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The Talon House

Staking My Claim


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Staking My Claim

Chapter Fourteen

by Nick

As a rule, I try my hardest not to ogle those I think might be straight. I mean, I wouldn't want some girl to push up on me, so I think it's common courtesy for me to be considerate of other's preferences as well. Still, there are some times when I can't help myself.

Take Kyle Porter for instance. I have no doubt in my mind that he's straight as an arrow, but he's so damn gorgeous that I have a hard time peeling my eyes off of him. His dark toned skin, a gift from the Sun Gods that he was granted when he took his shirt off in their presence, was perfect in every way. Not a blemish to speak of that I could see and that includes his acne free face. When he peels his shirt off his anatomically superior frame calls out for horny girls to get hot and bothered in his wake.

The way his hair, which consists of just a few dozen naturally brown strands that have been bleached blonde or saturated with peroxide half way up sit just perfectly over his brow and flutter so carelessly when a stiff breeze blows over. Unless he's coming out of the water with his surfboard, which happened to be the case on this particular afternoon.

I was on my way back in with my board when I caught a glimpse of the sincere smile he was flashing me. I noticed that his strands were plastered across his forehead, blending in nicely with his creamy complexion as his chest heaved up and down with exhaustion from the thirty minutes he'd spent catching wave after wave. I got the feeling that the real reason for his smile was laying on a beach towel spread out across the sand, covered in Coppertone and smelling like Coco and Shea Butter.

To call Renee pretty wouldn't be doing her justice. She was a bronzed Goddess, and even I could see it. I always had, though. At school, I always admired her from afar. Not that I was interested in her or anything. I'm just saying, she was always the most beautiful girl I'd ever seen. That said, it doesn't surprise me one bit that she and Kyle wound up together. They were a stunning couple to watch, and even though they weren't snobs, or even conceited as far as I knew, they had an air of exclusiveness about them that could be intimidating to someone who doesn't know them.

I know I used to feel that way about Renee. I mean, even if we'd have hung out in the same group at school all these years, I would have been a little cautious about how to approach her. She just seemed that way, but I'd never tell her so. Instead, I realized, I was grateful for her friendship, and happy to return her cute hugs and other innocent signs of affection that she gave me when we saw each other.

Of course, that made me wonder what the approaching school year would be like. I wasn't necessarily one of the kids that got picked on, but I was far from popular. I'd been asked to go to parties, but there was a part of me that was scared to go, because I didn't know what would be going on. I was honestly scared to try drugs and alcohol my freshman year, so I always withdrew. Eventually, the invitations stopped and I relaxed.

I guess I never considered the possibility that Jarred would be the one to introduce me to not only Renee, both Kyle's and Phillip, but also to the weed and the alcohol I used to be so afraid to try. My idea of fun before I met him was surfing, riding my skateboard, jumping my bike and being a Boy Scout. It was safe, it was drug free and it was something my parent's approved of.

I climbed on my board and paddled out toward the giant wave that was building and heading my way, then, at the right moment, I stood up and rode it out. By the time the water was receding all around me, leaving only a white layer of bubbles in its wake that quickly dissolved and revealed the smooth sand, Kyle K and Jarred were heading toward the blanket, where Phillip was already sitting with Renee and Kyle Porter. By the time I made it back to the blanket, the conversation had shifted toward where we were going next.

"Let's go back to your place so Porter can get his car and we can go eat," Jarred said decisively, looking at me with an expression that said hunger was racking his body. I was right there with him, and I'd have been surprised if anyone else would have said they weren't starving. We gathered everything up and started our trek back to my place. I noticed right away that Kyle K was carrying his best friend's board, as well as his own, while Renee rode on her boyfriend's back.

Five minutes later, we were back at my place, and I took it upon myself to turn the hose on and rinse myself and my board off, then I handed it off to Kyle K and let everyone take their turns while I went inside and changed into something dry and put deodorant on. Normally I'd have been in the shower, but I didn't want to be rude, so I was quick about everything. I was about to head back downstairs when Kyle K popped his head in my bedroom door.

"Hey dude," he said almost shyly. "Just seeing what you were up to."

"Getting something dry to wear so my crotch doesn't rot," I said with a grin. "Want something to wear?"

"If you don't mind," he said, sliding his hands in his pockets and looking down at the floor in a gesture I found irresistible. His rich, red lips were turned upwards in a smile, with his bottom lip hanging down just enough that I could see the wetness of the back of it. I smiled back at him and met his eyes, locked in the gaze we were sharing for almost a full minute until the sound of Jarred's voice broke our trance.

"Do you guys know where you want to eat?" he asked as he walked through the door, then he looked between us almost awkwardly, as if he could sense the chemistry in the air. He cleared his throat, then he went on. "We were thinking about going to Norfolk for Shoney's. Is that okay with you guys?"

"Sure," Kyle said, pulling his hands out of his pockets and straightening up.

"Sounds good," I said, turning my smile toward Jarred. "I don't know if I have anything that'll fit you guys, but if you want to borrow something, go ahead. Tell Phillip and Kyle, too."

"I brought something," he said. "I think everyone else did too."

With that, he turned and walked out and I opened my closet so Kyle could pick out what he wanted. He settled on a green Quicksilver top that I found at Dillard's and had to have because it was so cute, and a pair of tan corduroy shorts that went well with the top. As it turns out, Kyle and I wear the same size, which was what I suspected but wasn't a hundred percent sure of. I sat on my bed and watched as inconspicuously as possible as he peeled his wet shorts and boxers off, and almost fainted at the sight of his round, silky buns, which were no more than a couple feet from where I was sitting.

As hard as I tried, I had no control of my body and its reaction to what I was seeing. Blood rushed to my dick and before I knew what was happening, it was twice the size and solid as a rock. I thought I might be able to keep things cool, but when Kyle turned to face me, I realized I was in more trouble than I initially thought.

"Can I get a pair of boxers?" he asked me, his smile trapping me all over again. I cleared my throat when I realized that I was going to have to stand up, but I knew I had no choice. I stood and as quickly as possible, I made a beeline to my dresser, trying hard to hide the bulge in my pants, but it was no good. As soon as I stood up, Kyle's eyes drifted downward and caught the site of my hardon, and his smile got bigger before he looked away shyly.

I turned to hand him the boxers he asked for, but he had moved from his spot and was now standing at the head of my bed, laying out the shorts and shirt I'd handed him neatly across the bedspread, leaving me no choice but to walk back his way. As I approached him, we made eye contact again, and I couldn't help but notice the look of mischief in his eyes as he accepted the boxers from me.

"Do you need a pair of socks?" I asked him once he was fully dressed and prepping himself in the mirror.

"Please," he said, so I turned and got them for him. I took a seat on the bed and waited for him to finish. Much to my surprise, he brought the socks over to the bed and sat right next to me. When he brought his feet up, our shoulders made contact. A lot of contact, in fact. So much contact that I could feel and hear every breath he was taking as he slid each sock over each foot. While he was straightening the sock on his right foot, he surprised me again by resting his left hand on my right thigh, then turning and giving me another smile before he went back to what he was doing.

In reality, all of this took less than a few minutes, but it seemed like an eternity to me. It was almost as if I'd lost track of time, but the sound of Phillip and Jarred's arguing brought me back into the present.

"Hey, can we get some socks?" Phillip asked, casually walking in and taking a seat at my desk.

"Sure," I said, a little relieved that I wasn't alone with Kyle K anymore. "Do you guys need anything else?"

"Some wax for my hair would be nice," I heard Kyle Porter say from the doorway.

"Down the hall, in my bathroom." I said, standing up. That's when I noticed that Kyle K still had his hand on my leg, and I breathed a little sigh of relief that we weren't sitting side by side anymore. I walked with Kyle and Renee to my bathroom and opened the cabinet to show them what I had, then I walked back down the hall to my room to see if everyone else was ready.

From my house, there are two options for eating at Shoney's. You can either go to the one that sits at the edge of Norfolk on Virginia Beach Boulevard, or you can follow Atlantic Avenue all the way down to the end, where it rounds a corner and puts you on Shore Drive. From there, you can get on Little Creek Road and your there in no time. In my opinion, it's the same distance no matter which way you go, but apparently there's an ongoing debate amongst Jarred, Phillip, both Kyle's and Renee about which one is the most accessible.

"Oh God, do we have to have this argument again?" Phillip groaned, rolling his eyes.

"It's stupid to go all the way down Virginia Beach Boulevard when we're so close to the other one," Renee said, causing her boyfriend to give her a skeptical look.

"Dude, it's faster to go to the one on Little Creek," Kyle K said, and Renee turned and nodded at him.

"Does it even matter?" Jarred said. "I'm starving. Just drive, man."

Obviously, Kyle Porter was on Phillip and Jarred's page, but he was wise enough to do what his girlfriend wanted to. I had a feeling that Kyle K might have influenced that decision, too, but I didn't give it much thought. Instead, I just sat back and kept my input to myself until we got to the restaurant.

We claimed a booth with a large, round bench that wrapped around the table and was just right for the six of us, then we went up to the buffet for food. Jarred, in keeping with his ridiculous demeanor, piled his plate high with meatloaf, fried chicken thighs and enough cornbread to feed a family of four. While the rest of us ate like normal human beings, he shoveled his food down until there was none left, then he made Phillip stand up so he could get out for his next trip to the buffet.

When he got back, he had about ten yeast rolls on his plate and more fried chicken. As he systematically took his plate apart, Kyle Porter reached out and grabbed one of his rolls.

"Hey f**k face," Jarred bellowed in jest, but in a loud enough voice that the entire dining room stopped and stared at our table for a long, uncomfortable moment. Jarred looked around at all of the faces that were staring our way, and I suddenly felt Kyle K, who was seated to the left of me, sliding down in his seat, trying to duck out of site. I had a good mind to do the same, but instead I waited for everyone to go back to their meals.

Phillip closed his eyes and shook his head, chuckling to himself. Kyle and Renee were trying to hold their laughter in but having no luck, and Kyle K, who had brought himself back up, put his head back and laughed silently to himself. For my part, I was having a hard time keeping it together but somehow, I managed. Finally, I exhaled, and when I did, I let out a brief giggle.

"You're retarded," Phillip said with a grin, still shaking his head at Jarred.

"Well it's not like we'll ever see these people again," Jarred said indignantly.

"God, I love you man," Kyle K said, wiping tears from his eyes. Kyle Porter reached out and took another roll off of Jarred's plate, this time eliciting no outburst or protest, tore it in two, then handed his girlfriend the other half.

As accustomed as I was becoming to the scenes Jarred seemed to always make in public, I couldn't help but feel relieved when we left the restaurant for someplace a little less crowded. Kyle K's mom never seemed to be home, which seemed a little peculiar to me, but I didn't question it. I'd been to his house over and over again, and she was always either at work, out of town on business, or just out. Either way, I didn't mind at all, because we always seemed to have the freedom to drink and smoke all the pot we wanted when we were at his place.

It was a nice place, too. I think it could have been a lot nicer if Kyle and his mom took better care of it, but that was none of my business. They were happy with it, and that's all that counted. Kyle seemed to have more than Jarred, Phillip and I, at least materially. The fifty-five inch plasma in his living room was certainly bigger than the forty-two inch he had in his room, but I didn't hear any complaints from him about it.

Earlier in the week I had bought a hundred sack from Jarred, and that was currently the source of our amusement. I had a fondness for smoking joints rolled with the frostiest, stickiest buds in my sack, and was getting pretty good at rolling them. Everyone admonished me for my habit, lecturing that I was wasting good weed by not using a pipe. I wasn't too worried about it, though. I figured that somewhere, someone was growing more, and I'd just buy it when my stash was gone.

Joints burn so much easier, and aren't as harsh as a pipe can be. I like hitting a bong, but sometimes if there's smoke left in the chamber, it can make me cough, and I'm not fond of the staleness of someone's left over bong rips. So we passed the joint around, and it seemed like that was all it took to get us all blazed.

Renee took her pipe out, and Jarred packed it with his own bud, then we passed it around a few times. I was in orbit the last time the pipe came my way, and I almost missed my hit, as if I needed it anyway.

"Hello, earth to Andrew," Kyle K said with a grin as he waved his hand in front of my face, causing me to crack up. I took the pipe from him and hit it, then I tried to pass it to Phillip, who waved it off, so I wound up handing it to Jarred.

At the other end of the sectional, Renee and Kyle Porter were in the middle of a very long, very heterosexual kiss that I found sweet but disgusting at the same time. I turned my head and noticed that Kyle K was staring off into space, then I looked over to where Phillip and Jarred were and saw them smiling dumbly at each other. I knew what they were smiling about, but I also knew that they couldn't do anything in front of the rest of us, so I turned my attention back to Kyle K.

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Renee and Kyle Porter get up and hold hands as they made their way toward the staircase. I looked over at Jarred and Phillip again, and realized that they were grinning at each other because they knew where the couple was heading and what they'd be doing, and they had the same thing in mind.

I felt a little crushed when that realization hit me, but I kept a stiff upper lip and tried not to let my thoughts consume me. Of course, in my state, that was easier said than done. All I could think of was the possibility that Jarred and Phillip were going to find a way to sneak off and have sex, and that Phillip didn't even care that I was sitting right there. I sat and stewed about it for about five more minutes, then I got up and made an announcement.

"I need some fresh air."

With that, I got up and walked out the front door, closing it behind me and taking a seat on the top step of Kyle K's porch. I rested my head against the vinyl siding that covered the outside of his house, and took a deep breath, trying to think about what the hell I was doing. Just then, I heard the front door open and close, and I lifted my head just in time to see Phillip sitting next to me.

"Are you okay?" he asked, and I sadly nodded my reply. "You don't look it."

"I'm okay," I lied. "I was just wondering when we were going to be together by ourselves today."

"Do you want to leave?" he asked, and I shrugged. "We can go back to your place if you want to."

"We don't have to," I said quietly. "Will be alone later tonight?"

"I promise, my love," he said softly, then he looked around before he leaned in and planted a kiss on my lips that brought a smile to my face. I put my hand over my heart and said, "I love you."

"Love you too," he said, standing up and reaching down with his hand to help me up. I placed my hand in his and let him pull me to my feet, then I held his hand as we took the five steps we needed to take to make it to Kyle's front door. Before he reached out and turned the knob, I leaned into him and let him wrap his arm around my shoulder for a long hug. When he released it, I let go of his hand and stood up straight while he opened the door and we walked back in.

At some point, Kyle K and Jarred got wrapped up in playing Halo 2 on his X Box360 and Phillip took the opportunity to be daring by wrapping an arm around my shoulders and pulling me into him as we sat on the couch and watched. I could feel his arm move from my shoulders and down my back, his fingertips tracing down my spine from the outside of my shirt. I gazed up at him, and out of nowhere, he planted a kiss on my lips, his eyes locked on Jarred and Kyle the whole time. It was obvious that they were immersed in the game, but we had to be careful, which was why I almost choked when I felt lips part and his tongue invade my mouth.

When we broke our kiss, I sighed and looked up at him dreamily, then I mouthed the words, "I love you" to him. He replied in kind, and I sighed again as I rested my head on his shoulder and closed my eyes. When I reopened them, Jarred was still playing, but Kyle K had crashed. Phillip was out like a light, too, and at some point, I wound up with my head on a throw pillow. I sat up and cracked my neck, and Jarred turned and smiled at me.

"Hey Andrew," he said, reaching into his pocket and pulling his weed out. "Wanna go smoke another joint?"

"Sure," I said, stretching my arms and legs as much as possible before getting up and making a beeline for the bathroom. When I came out, I followed Jarred out the back door. We each took a chair at the patio table by the back door and I watched intently as Jarred rolled a perfect looking joint. The table had a built in umbrella for shade and a glass surface that made it easy for him to break up the bud and scoop up every bit of it to dump into the paper.

Once the joint was rolled, he set it out of the shade so it could dry, then he turned and smiled at me.

"So you like Kyle K?" he asked, and I looked down and blushed, causing his smile to spread out even more. "I knew it!"

"It's not what you think," I said quietly. "I just think he's cute. He's not gay though."

"How do you know?" he asked in a tone that said he thought I shouldn't dismiss the possibility.

"I don't,' I admitted. "But even if he was, I, I don't know."

"Andrew, I want you to know something," he said. "I meant what I said when I told you I'd always care about you. You really are one of my best friends, and I always want it to be that way."

"Even if we don't.." I asked, letting my voice trail off at the end of the sentence because I knew he knew what I meant.

"Of course," he said. "That was never a condition of our friendship."

"I thought that maybe you were pissed at me for not wanting to anymore," I told him.

"I might have been," he admitted, then he sighed. "I'm sorry I made you feel that way, though. You didn't deserve that."

"I'll always care about you too, Jarred," I said with a smile. "So are you going to light that joint, or are you letting it age?"

Once the joint was gone, Jarred got up to go back inside. "Are you coming in, dude?"

"Nah, I'm going sit out here," I said. "The breeze feels good."

"Okay," he said with a shrug, then he turned and went inside. As it turns out, the time alone might have been just what I needed to mull things over in a more reasonable fashion. Jarred had officially given me the green light to get over him. It was all up to me now. The question was how willing Phillip would be to commit to me and me only, especially now that I had done that for him. Of course, in order for him to realize that I had made a sacrifice of my own to be with him, he'd have to know all about the months I'd spent as Jarred's lover. I knew it was risky, but I had to level with him if I expected him to ever be true to me.

That thought terrified me, though. Just thinking of the hurt I'd be putting my boyfriend through was overwhelming, and I found myself shaken at the thought. So shaken in fact, that I started to feel a little sick to my stomach. I used both hands to fan my face and try to calm down, but it wasn't getting me anywhere. I knew that the only way to get myself back on track would be to decide not to tell Phillip anything, so that's what I did. I told myself that I was just stoned, and that Phillip never had to find out. I let out a small sigh of relief and calmed down just in time to crack a smile when the back door opened and Kyle K walked out.

"Hey," I said, feeling a little flush again when I took the time to soak up his sleepy smile. I noticed that his hair was matted against the left side of his head, an obvious result of his slumber.

"Hi," he said through a small yawn and a small stretch. "Jarred said you were out here all by yourself."

"Yeah, the air's nice and cool," I replied. He finished his yawn and put his arms down, batting his baby blues as he walked up to where I was sitting and leaned across the table for the orange Zig Zags that were on the other side of me. He could have easily walked around and grabbed them, I knew, but instead he opted to put himself where I could pick up his intoxicating scent. He reached out and grabbed the papers, then he slowly pulled back until he was face to face with me, his nose less than an inch from mine and his lips so close to mine that if either of us so much as puckered up, they'd touch.

Without a word, he smiled at me and we both stayed where we were for an extended period of time. I could feel his breath tickling my face, so I grinned at him, wanting him to know that I liked his close proximity and wanted the two of us to join at the lips more than anything. He responded with a smile of his own, so I brought my left hand up and let my fingertips brush against the back of his hand in small circles. I figured that if he needed a signal to go further, I was only too happy to send it his way.

When he didn't make a move, I knew he was nervous, so I decided to take the initiative. I used my tongue to lick my lips from right to left, and I could almost feel the surface of his lips on the tip of my tongue. I heard him sigh, then he inched a little closer, but still not close enough for our lips to touch. I looked deep into his eyes, which were full of uncertainty and nervousness, and I gave him a warm, accepting smile before I puckered my lips. And just like that, I was kissing Kyle Kammersguard on the lips.

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