The Circle


Chapter 10

Yet Another Birthday Surprise


  Tuesday Night

I stopped dead in my tracks, stunned. I knew Jeff's mom well enough to know that she wouldn't let him stay over on a school night. True, there probably wouldn't be school tomorrow with all that snow down already and more falling, but she had come to get him and Todd almost an hour ago. 

How could he even be here? I wondered.

"What kind of prank is this?" I asked, still standing at the top of the stairs.

"Not the usual kind, dude. You coming in or what?"

I hesitated, then walked slowly into my room, waiting for Todd to jump out with something to throw at me; I half expected the whole gang to jump out. The idea of them pulling another prank on me wouldn't stop running across my mind.

"What?" Jeff asked, seeing that I was acting oddly by looking around so obviously.

"What, exactly!" I said. "What the hell-e-o? What're you doin' here?"

"Staying over, I hope," he said with a shrug and another drink.

Staying over! On a school night? Without even talking about it first? And after the thing two weeks ago? And all the last two weeks?

More and more such questions came to my mind, cluttering it up. When he had arrived at the party I had been surprised, to say the least, but him laying on my bed, talking about staying over, it was beyond surprising.


"Yeah. Is it okay?"

"With me? Sure! What about your mom? And my folks?"

"Your folks don't care, and my mom called and asked if I could stay over here tonight since there's prob'ly no school tomorrow. She said she was sure there wouldn't be 'cause there's like over a foot coming tonight on top of the foot now. And she didn't want to drive in it if she didn't have to. So your folks said that it was okay with them if I stayed over. I'll just take the bus with you guys if there is. So I asked them not to say anything and I was going to surprise ya later when the party was over."

"Cool!" I replied, grinning from ear to ear. "So where's Todd?"


That's weird, I thought. Tom don't like Todd's ability to irritate him, and Tom was a wet towel over Todd. Them being around each other all night is something I'd like to see!

"That's got to be a weird night!"

"Don't you know it!" he said, laughing, his braces showing at the corner of his lopsided grin.

"So, Tom knew you were up here just a minute ago?"

"Nah. He came up the stairs and I was in the can and saw him but he didn't notice me. I didn't know what to do! I'm glad you guys didn't have to go!"

We laughed at the image of Tom or I finding Jeff hiding in my bathroom for a bit before the embarrassment was too much. 

"So, did you hear us? You know, talking and stuff?"

"Nah. I mean I could hear you guys sometimes, mostly Tom, but not really hear what you were saying. I was in the shower then, hoping Tom was leaving and I could explain coming out of your bathroom! You don't know how glad I was when I heard you guys leaving so I could sneak out!"

Still standing in my doorway, Jeff across the room on my bed, I asked, "So, like, is everything okay? You know. You're not ..."

"Forget it. Okay?" he said with a huge roll of his eyes and his head.

I saw on his face that he didn't want to speak of it. I saw how serious he was that it be forgotten. I felt a relief of pressure that nearly caused my legs to fold beneath me.

"If you want to, sure. Okay. I just, I ..."

"Just forget it, like it never happened. Okay? Forget it."

"I ..."

I wanted to simply forget it, that was certain! I would have liked nothing more than to forget the entire incident. Jeff laying on my bed, telling me to forget it seemed ludicrous though. He must have sensed that or seen it in my face.

"Look, Al. It was my fault. All you did was ... look, I overacted, okay? I should a just scooted away or something. I don't know. But I shouldn't a left. Okay? Can we just pretend it didn't happen?"

What more could I ask for?


Feeling tingly and squirmy all over, I sat on the bed near him. We didn't have to think of things to talk about, having two weeks of things to catch up on, the topics came naturally, flowing from one to another seamlessly. We talked, sometimes while watching the snow fall outside. Jeff liked the newer style of rock, so the radio stayed on the station that played it. The dee-jay said that Cook County was under a snow emergency for the overnight and morning, as well as probably the entire day tomorrow. That meant no school, and mandatory work for mom. Dad could probably get to work, as usual.

By midnight I had rolled and smoked an entire joint with Jeff, who had smoked it right along with me. The radio had announced our school, along with most, as closed tomorrow with alternate schedules; that meant that anyone that showed up could go to the gym and mess around, or the band or computer rooms, or the library so long as the right teachers showed up to open them. 

"I always kind of wanted to get really high with you alone."

"You could have anytime, man."

"I know. But, just, you know."

I yearned to touch his hair as he shook his head. His waves of shiny, light blond hair weaved a dance in those movements. His lips were darker and seemed even more luscious than usual as I tried not to get caught admiring them. I loved that my lips were touching the same joint as his were. His wonderful blue eyes were like magnets for my own. I knew the pot was making me horny, but he really seemed to look even better than usual. Our being alone on my bed probably had a great deal to do with that as well.

Those quivering, squishy feelings were back, like with Toby. I felt as if all my insides were mobile, roaming wildly around inside of me, bumping into each other and caroming off my ribs and spine. My muscles all turned to Play-Dough. There was a feeling of weightlessness, of giddiness, of overwhelming warmth.

He looked at me and met my eyes. We grinned. His cornflower blue eyes sucked me right into them.

"Al, I don't think I'd mind, you know? I guess, what, well ... shit! Just, I'm sorry I walked out a couple weeks ago. It was just, just ... I don't know, really. Ya know?"

He looked so uncomfortable, and I wanted nothing more than to release him from any such condition. I wanted to make him comfortable, happy. I was glad he was there, and still my friend, and not afraid of me. Especially not afraid of me.

"I shouldn't'a done it. I know. I'm sorry, too. It was my fault, don't deny it, okay? If I hadn't done it, then you wouldn't've had to leave. Okay?"

He nodded and said solemnly, "Let's never talk about it. Okay? It never happened. Okay? Swear?"

I nodded, we swore. I wanted to forget it, too, and I tried.

"I wanted to say, you know, too, that, it wouldn't be bad, or, I'd ..."

He gave up again with a sigh. I wished that I could somehow read his mind, so that he wouldn't have to say it, so that I could save him the trouble of it. I only wanted him to be happy around me.

"I don't know, but I mean, I ..." he gave up with another sigh.

"What? What is it, man? You can tell me anything, you know. I mean, you know, or, you know, kind of ..."

I trailed off, not knowing what to say.

"I know. And I don't mind if we, if, uh, I won'tminddoingitsometimes," he blurted out in a rush.

I knew that I had misheard him.


"I won't mind if we do something sometime. Okay? Just don't, like, surprise me. Okay? That's all. Okay?"

I felt the butterflies in my stomach, whirling.

"Okay ... but, you said to forget it."

"I mean that I left! I, if I'd known you was gonna, uh, if I knew it was coming, or something, but, I don't know! It surprised me, and made me feel ... I don't know!"

"You still won't mind? Then, why did you leave?"

He shook his head and looked up, drawing my stare to his own again. His cheeks were ruddy red, nearly the color of his lips. His eyes twinkled powder blue. He shook his head again and smiled wider. His brows furrowed a bit, his light eyebrows more visible than usual against his blush. His wide, soft, plush lips were moist from nervous turns inward and outward. He was slightly chewing his lower lip - one of his cute affectations.

I could tell he was nervous, and a bit scared. I could tell I was the cause of it, and why he was in the entire situation. I only wanted to make him happy, and hoped that what he wanted could make me happy, too. I didn't know what to say to him, and my guts were tying themselves up into knots the size of watermelons. I said the only thing that seemed to make sense.

"I wouldn't hurt you," I said softly.

"I know you wouldn't, would you?" he said as softly. "I don't think you would. I bet you'd be gentle, and careful, huh?"

I was nearly shocked when I realized that he thought I had meant physically; I had been thinking along more esoteric and intangible - emotional - pains.

"You have no idea, Jeff!" I said suddenly, surprising myself. 

I was going to cry. I didn't dare though, I didn't want to be so wussy in front of Jeff. He didn't move or speak. He just sat there, chewing at his lips and watching his fingers picking at each other. His eyes were wider, though.

"I'm sorry!" I said, standing up and walking away from him as fast as I could.

"It's okay, I kind of know anyway," Jeff said as I heard the bed squeak, letting me know that he had stood up.

"Can everybody tell I'm a fag?"

I wanted to cry so badly, but wanted not to in front of Jeff, especially while talking about that, even more. That was before I realized that I had just officially came out to Jeff. I was sure that my heart had stopped, and would have stayed stopped if I hadn't noticed.

"Nah. I don't think so. You aren't all sissy acting or anything. It's just, you know, I know you is all. You, well, it's not like you hide it real good from me. You know? I'm, well, I'm not sure how I feel about it, you know? I'm, I, don't know what to think."

It was again another ride on that roller coaster that never stopped, and it was a scary part of the ride too. I had many times wanted that very topic to come up between us, but I found that I was totally unprepared for it. But the opportunity there and then was far too great to pass up entirely.

"Jeff, I, can't help it. You're so cute! And so nice! I don't see how anyone can't, really like you!"

I had to concentrate on not crying, on trying to hold myself together. It was a difficult fight.

He said, "Yeah, right," in his cute, mocking way.

I laughed. 

"That's just what I mean! The way you say things. That stuff. Just how you are, dude. It's all so fucking cute!"

My whole world seemed to turn on the conversation, and I had no clues as to how any of the outcomes could be good, nor what way, if any, I should try to direct it.

"Man, if I was gay, I'd so be so lucky if you liked me," he said, sitting back down on the bed.

"Man, if you was gay, I'd be so lucky if you liked me!"

"Al, I do. If I was, I would, ya know?"

His voice was strained, and obviously so. I felt awful to be the cause of that.

"But good thing I'm not or mom would kill me," he said suddenly and quickly.

I knew what he meant. If his mom found out that I was gay, we both knew she would no longer allow Jeff any contact with me. Jeff's just knowing and talking to a homosexual would mean that she would have him blessed and baptized again, immediately, to protect him from my evil influence.

"Yeah, good thing, I guess," I said, sitting not too near to him on my bed.

"Yeah. But, you know, just messing around isn't any big deal. Most guys do it by college, you know," he said, repeating one of my frequently quoted statistics.

We smiled at each other, laughing a bit.

"And most guys do it more than once in their lifetimes, with more than one other guy," I finished.

"It's just, mom can't find out! Anybody!"

The horrified expression on his face made his intense worry about that possibility quite clear.

"Forget your mom. And Todd. Everybody. It's just us, between us. Nobody else's business, like you said in the van earlier. Right?"

"And the guys don't care, even if they know, huh?"

His words echoed his words earlier in the van.

I realized then why Jeff had taken advantage of the situation. When his mom had offered the chance to stay over, he had taken it knowing he could do so and no one but my parents and I would know. And his brother, who was sure to never tell anyone. And Jon, and he was pretty good at secrets. Tom was sure to keep quiet about it, no doubts or worries there. So as far as the rest of the guys knew, Jeff and Todd had gone home first. That was why he had waited in my bedroom instead of coming back to the party. It was all too convenient. And Tom, Todd, and Jon had agreed to go along with it. And knew.

They all know that they all know; and that's a lot of them knowing, I thought.

"Wait. What happened to Todd until the party broke up?"

"He played Atari then called next door and Jon said he was back and Todd could come over. He's been next door since."

He yawned and then stretched; I wasn't surprised, as I knew he was rarely up so late. The movements made his package strain against his jeans a bit more and revealed his belly as his shirt rode up, drawing my eyes there momentarily. His slight treasure trail of fine, light blond hair was briefly visible as the shirt reached its zenith at his adorable navel before it slid back down. 

I looked away quickly. I wanted to look more closely, like always, but I didn't want caught at that, not after breaching the gay subject with him so recently.

"Roll another joint?" Jeff asked, surprising me.

"Sure! You sure though? Remember the last time you got really stoned with me!"

"Yup!" Jeff said, doing his upward nod and tight-lipped grin.

I laughed and then rolled a joint. While he played Dig-Dug, I rolled and thought about the times we had jacked each other off. I hadn't known that Jeff was built that special and wonderful way then. I had pulled his skin back too far and too hard inside his shorts. It had caused him some pain, and he had told me why. I didn't believe it at first, and in the dark and inside his shorts, I had never gotten to see it. Later, when we had jacked each other off again, it had been in the dark, but I had gotten a slightly better look since he had taken his shorts down that time. The third time we jacked each other off, we had taken our shorts down to our thighs, and I did get to see something of him in the light from the streetlight, but nothing clear or distinct.

Jeff's foreskin wasn't tight, but it had a small opening which didn't allow his entire head to poke out of it when hard. It would slip back, allowing almost half of his head outside, but never revealing any more than that.

I had dreamt, fantasized, and thought often of more than simply jacking each other off. In my own mind I had done everything to and with Jeff, but in reality it had been just three mutual masturbations. 

I finished rolling and then lit the joint. As it burned, we laughed and talked. Eventually he asked why I wanted to do anything with him.

I delayed by taking a long, slow hit from the joint. I knew why I wanted to touch him, but I didn't think it would be a good thing to tell him. I settled.

"Because you're ... because you're cute."

I felt my face turn hot and I couldn't stop grinning. He snickered softly and turned red.

"Like there's anything cute about me."

"Oh, please! Tell me you don't know how great your hair is!"

"What's so great about my hair?"

"It's like, so smooth, and soft looking, and ... like, all liquid gold."

I sighed. He passed the joint. It was nearly a roach, and I had to hold it between fingernails as I took a hit. I offered it back to him but he waved it off. After putting it on the tray on my desk I returned to sitting next to him.

The desire to touch his hair overcame me, and without considering it, I asked if I could. To my surprise, he scooted so that he was nearly against my side.

"Go ahead."

I didn't hesitate to put my fingers into that thick mass of dense, straight, blond hair. It was silky smooth, and didn't have a tangle in it. It flowed through my fingers just like liquid gold. I sighed deeply, and Jeff relaxed a bit onto me, resting his back against my shoulder, his head back, facing upward.

I brushed over and through his hair, waking the smell of his shampoo from it. I tingled inside, nearly shaking. I worked up the guts to slip my hand down the side of his head to his cheek. The skin was smooth and hot under my fingertips. 

He smiled even wider as they passed over his lips. I let the back of my fingers caress up along the side of his jaw and back into his hair. I cupped his ear and traced down along his neck to his shoulder. He leaned away from me and turned toward me, his hand brushed my hair back from the side of my face, and his fingertips wandered around my face and neck for a time. 

I was nearly on fire! Every touch of him sent waves of electrical pleasure through me. My groin felt tense and hot, and I grew hard, very hard. My guts shivered and my skin grew hot.

I wanted to kiss him so badly. I wanted even more.

"Al, I'd like to, you know, uh, can we touch more? I think I really like it," he said hesitantly without looking at my face.

His voice was soft and shaky, almost breathless. He looked back at me once he had spoken, and I could almost feel myself falling into his eyes.

There was something so very potent about his eyes. Looking into them always felt as if I were looking into the past, as if I were looking into a place I had been many times before, but was now somehow strange, or new, or different. Yet comforting, safe, familiar.

I wanted to do whatever he wanted, to make him happy. I was afraid of making him afraid of me, though. But he had asked.

"Like this stuff?" I asked, putting both hands around his face and brushing his hair back, then sliding my hands down the sides of his neck to his shoulders. I let my hands continue down his arms, tickling the hairs there, then back up them.

He drew in a slightly shuddering breath and nodded, smiling in a way I hadn't seen before. It was a happy smile, but not wide or curved up much. It was more a satisfied, or maybe a yearning smile. His eyes glittered like never before, drawing me into them again, despite their being only half open.

"I could stare at your eyes all night," I said before I realized that I had. 

I didn't want to make him more uncomfortable. I knew he was willing to explore somewhat, but I also knew he couldn't want the full, emotional and sexual relationship I dreamt of.

"Yeah, sure. You just want in my pants," he laughed.

"I so do!" I said, surprising myself and making us laugh.

"Fine. Then will you stop loving me after?" he asked, like a teasing princess in a story of virtue.

We laughed so hard that we suddenly stopped, afraid of waking my parents.

"No, I won't. You'll always be something special to me," I said when I returned from closing my door. "Honest."

"Sweet talker," he said, touching my cheek with his fingertips again. "This touching is good. Tickles, feels nice, like, I don't know, like being somewhere safe."

"Jeff, when you're with me, you can't be more safe," I offered as I continued softly touching his face and hair.

"Makes me hard, too," he laughed.

Without thinking, I reached down and found his hardness. It was definitely at full attention. My own was roaring at full staff as well. I was very embarrassed that I had been so forward as to grope him so suddenly. I worried that I had shown him just how much of a raging homosexual I was. I suddenly worried that he was about to run.

"And, dude, I can't believe I'm going to ask this, but, um, can we do blow-jobs?"

Everything inside of me lower than my shoulders fell into my ass simultaneously, then shot right back into proper position, quivering there for long, queasy moments. My heart started pounding even harder than it had since we started touching each other. 

"You really ... ?" I asked, not knowing why, since I was sure that I wanted to give him one and didn't want to give him an opportunity to deny it or change his mind.

"Want to see what it's like, anyway. I mean, if you want to. I guess you do, I don't know. I think you have, with Tom."

I was stunned!

"What? Why?"

"I think you and Tom do everything. Right?"

I was stunned yet again.

"Are we that obvious?"

"Nah, I don't think so. Just, I know you guys. And I been here when you guys stayed over and it was, well, like obvious you guys were, you know, more than just hands and stuff."

"Why? What was so obvious?"

"Dude. Vaseline by your bed? Tom doing that bee-jay move thing and you blushing? Tons of stuff."

"Great, everyone knows?"

"Probably," Jeff said with a laugh. "Nobody cares, for sure."

"They don't, do they?" I asked, remembering the conversation in the van and my thoughts as I had sat in the kitchen.

"Nope. I know I don't. Well, jealous some. I mean, I'd love to get a bee-jay! Supposed to be the best!" he said enthusiastically.

"Jeff! It so is. I'll show you!" I said enthusiastically. "But not right at first, okay? I want ..." I didn't want to tell him what I really wanted, but he seemed to like the touching, so, "to show you more touching stuff first, okay?"

He nodded and smiled, and we were touching each other, and I was enjoying it a huge amount, but a sudden thought worried me. 

"What?" Jeff asked, obviously able to read me.

"Um, one thing. Probably stupid, I know, but, well ..."


I was humiliated to even ask, and feared any possible answer, but I had to ask.

"You doing this just for my birthday?"

"No. Yes, sort of, because it's your birthday, but not just. I want to. And tonight, the snow, and mom calling to see if I could stay, and the guys at the party thinking I went home, it was too good to pass up, ya know?"

I did. I said as much. I still felt ridiculous, but Jeff pushed that away with his next statement.

"I've been trying to figure out how to for a while. You know, do more than, you know, just jack off."

"You have? Really? How long?"

The very idea had always seemed impossible to me. I had always thought I was lucky Jeff had allowed the jacking sessions. His wanting more, wanting a blow-job, had always been just fantasy. That he had been thinking about how to ask simply stunned me.

"I don't know. Like at Christmas break, when you changed out of your grandma's sweater and those funky slacks? I got so ... man, just say I noticed, okay?"

I blushed heatedly and my heart fluttered. He had noticed after all, and he had liked what he saw! The idea that perhaps Tom was right about Jeff began to seem far less idiotic. 

He's just like most guys, just curious. Don't go putting more into than it holds. That's all. He's curious, and wants to see what a blow-job is like. So show him! And see if he tries it out or not. That'll tell a lot, if he gives it too. And how, too. But shit, just be glad he doesn't hate you for being a fag! YES!

His face was slightly blushed, his lips a darker red than normal. I wanted very badly to kiss him, as badly as I'd ever wanted to kiss anyone at any time, including Toby. It bothered me that the desire was that strong, but I tucked it deep down and hid it from him, as I had become used to do doing with such feelings when I was with Tom.

"You, you really want to, you know ... I mean, you don't have to or anything. It's just that ..."

I had no idea what I had wanted to say as all traces of the thought I was trying to express was forced from my mind as Jeff reached out and pulled my shirt off over my head. I was motionless, silent, shocked. Then he was undoing my jeans and then helping me off with them. I leaned over and did the same for him with hands that nearly shook as much as the rest of my body.

Fuck! Can this be? Is this going to happen? Why does my body feel like I'm being electrocuted? It's kind of hard to breathe! Fuck! I'm unfastening Jeff's pants! I'm unzipping his zipper! I can feel the body heat coming out! He's leaned back so I can do this easy! I'm taking his pants off!

I finally stopped wondering if it was really happening, and finally let it happen.

I wanted to hold him, cuddle him, kiss him. I knew not to, that I would have to hide those desires deeply inside again.

Well, it won't be the kissing, cuddling kind of sex I want with him, but still something, I thought. Almost-sex with the most gorgeous guy I know, and for who I feel so much. And for so long! Finally!

chapter eleven chapter eleven x
Chapter Eleven
Jeff, and The Circle Begins
The Circle - Chapter 10