FYI, please remember this is part of a rough draft. 

 

Chapter One

 

So I’ve got six rules for dating. They go like this:

1) Never date the same person for more than 1 month.

2) Never date the same person twice.

3) Always act like a gentleman, but try to remain distant and aloof.

4) Never give more than a kiss. Preferable short pecks. Definitely without tongue.

5) For the love of God, NO TOUCHING BREASTS!

6) Always end it with a “It’s not you, it’s me” speech, highlighting their greatness while making yourself out to be the dog.

I’ve got my reasons, but these keep me sane, keep most of the girls from getting too attached and keep my balls intact after I let them go.

A brunette ball of energy bounds my way, all smiles and twinkling eyes. My name is on her shiny coral lips and her curves are probably the focus of every hot blooded male standing on the green. Sighing, I open my arms to receive her but something else catches my attention.  Or someone else, I should say.

Who.

Is.

That?!

Shoulder length black hair with…are those blue strips artfully running through it? Skin like a porcelain doll. The sun reflects off a silver lip ring. It seems to be winking at me. Slight build, yet the skin tight tee shows that they must do some working out.

Shit. My jaw is hanging and there is drool on my chin. My teeth click with a snap and I try to focus on the girl hugging me. Maggie’s soft body is rubbing up against mine, to the envy of every other guy around I’m sure, as she greets me hello, but I cannot avert my gaze. Who is that Adonis?

Dream Boy turns his head and our eyes meet.

Hole-lee shit.

I swear my knees go weak. What the hell? Since when do I have lame Harlequin Romance type reactions like that? What’s next, gushing with the girls over how hot this guy is? Somehow, I don’t think my girlfriend will appreciate that.

A smart stinging sensation on my arm breaks the trance, followed by a high pitched whiny voice.

“Iaaaaan! You are not paying attention to me!”

The Asian Adonis smirks at Maggie’s words and breaks the connection, walking towards the school. Sigh. I plaster on what I hope is a realistic looking smile before looking down at the girl who has her arms wrapped around my waist.

“Sorry Maggie.”

She squeezes me. You’d think she was trying to break me in half with the effort of her embrace. My eyes close for a second as I pat her back a couple of times before breaking free from her gangly arms. Her beaming smile is bright.  I wish I had sunglasses on.

“I’ve missed you, sweetie!” She gushes. My fake smile stays in place.

Now you’re probably wondering why I’ve got this chick throwing herself at me, calling me pet names and telling me she missed me, when moments ago I couldn’t keep my eyes off the newest addition of the Leesville High student body. Welp, it’s pretty simple and I’m sure you’ve figured it out already, but just in case you haven’t, I’ll spell it out for you:

I’m gay.

Yes, a flaming homosexual. Well, okay, the only thing “flaming” about me is the tangled mass of red corkscrews on my head, but you get what I mean. I’m still tucked into the closet, where I need to remain, at least until I get out of this backwater Podunk little town. The inhabitants would crucify me if they knew I preferred the hard muscular plains of a man’s chest over two inflated bags of fat. Sorry ladies, boobs just don’t do much for me.

Maggie is what my friends call, the flavor of the month. That’s not to say I date twelve girls a year. I prefer to keep girls out of it all together, if I can. I’m not comfortable lying to them. I get it’s not right. I’m also quite aware that if my secret ever gets out, some will come after me with torches and pitchforks; but what else can I do? Some of them just will *NOT* take no for an answer.

“Where have you been hiding, you bad boy?” Maggie releases my waist and loops her arm through mine. My eyes meet Clay’s, my best friend, who’s sidled up to us, for some help. That bastard smirks at me. Rolling my eyes at his response, I explain to Maggie that practice has been keeping me quite busy. She nods knowingly.

“Colorguard practice has been ridiculously brutal lately too.”

Insert my grunt of acknowledgement here. The familiar loud clanging saves me from having to get more into the conversation. “Later!”

I disengage from her hold and follow Clay and the stream of students into the building. We’re all mindless sheep heading for the slaughter that are exams, term papers and high school cliques. Good times, right?

We stop at Clay’s locker.

“What’s your schedule like?” At his question, I extract a crumpled paper from my pocket.

“Hmm. Bio II first period, then English, study hall, algebra II, art, lunch, world history II and finally Spanish.”

“Spanish with Senorita Luiz? You lucky dog. I wouldn’t mind ending my day looking at that.” Clay winks. My head shakes slightly. He laughs, used to my antics.

“Looks like we’ve got English and lunch together. That’s good.”

I glance at his immaculately smooth schedule. “4 AP classes?! Are you nuts?”

Color blooms on his tan cheeks. “If I do well in them, they’ll count as college credits.” Clay  studies his feet. I don’t know why he’s embarrassed, it makes sense to me.

“Oh…well, good luck with that.”

Clay flashes a smile that would make my heart race…if it came from anyone other than him.

The second bell peels and we break away with a hand in the air. ”See ya later.”

Bio class is half full already. A couple of wrestling teammates have taken up residence in the back corner. Grabbing a seat, I’m greeted with the familiar sounds of my friends rating the girls as they come into class. So crass are teenaged boys, eh? They try to get me to play along, but I won’t take the bait.

We bullshit about our summers while the teacher takes attendance and hands out the fifty pound text book we’ll be using. There’s talk of dissection this year and if anyone has a queasy stomach, they better get over it right now or opt for a lab partner who’ll do all the cutting.

My head jerks up at the mention of lab partners. A feverent wish comes over me for the teacher to do the picking, but it’s dashed when I hear him say we’ve got two minutes to pick someone. My teammates are already pairing up. I stretch my arm out to tap one on the shoulder when I’m pulled away by the other. Shit. This cannot be happening. With panic-filled eyes, I glance over my shoulder to see that Maggie is the one with my arm in a death grip. My gaze swings back to the guys who are grinning and shrugging their shoulders. Traitors. Fucking traitors. Every last one of them.

Somehow I spit out that us working together would not be a good idea. She pouts.

“Why not?”

“Uhh it’ll be easier to study with the guys before and after practice.” Please oh please let her see the logic in my statement.

“Our practices end around the same time. We can meet up after just as easily,” she says. “We can go to your place to study.”

No.” No fucking way is she ever coming to my house. No one comes to my place. Not even Clay. Not anymore.

Her eyes bulge at my vehement refusal.

Sighing I run my hand through my messy hair.  “It’s just not a good idea Mags.”

Anger storms briefly in her hazel eyes. She swings around and takes stock of the class. Turning back to face me, hands on her hips, she raises her eyebrows.

“Welp, looks like there’s no one left, so you’re stuck with me anyway.” A glance around shows me she’s right. Shoulders sink in defeat. Dammit. This will not make for a good year.

A deep breath helps to calm me. Nothing to be done about it now. I’ll just have to make the best of the situation. Head down, I trudge along behind Maggie as she leads us to the last empty lab table. We barely get settled when the bell goes off.

“Got to bounce.” I scoop up the new fifty pound paperweight before dashing out the door. Please God, don’t let her be in any more of my classes.

 

 

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  1. Pingback: A Collection of Teasers | Keystrokes and Word Counts

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