Hey everybody!! I've got something completely different this time! MIWK over, I had a little trouble with writers block, but this came out of it. I think this is just a short story, I don't plan on writing any more for it, but if you think there's too much more to just leave it, then, well, email me and tell me what you think. neodave@skyenet.net or neodavenet@hotmail.com

Save Me

by David

Ryan and Brandon....

"Wait, wait. Do you have a condom?" Ryan said with as small a voice as he could udder without being inaudible. It sounded so odd, all this hot talk and kissing and suddenly things seemed too far- and now he had to ask this.

'What? Uh, no, actually. I don't." Brandon said, looking as if he had just woken up, the lust gone from his eyes.

"Oh." was all Ryan could think to say. He'd never done this before, but he knew well enough to know these days you didn't do it without a condom. He sat back against the headboard of the bed, bringing his knees up and wrapping his arms against them, he was suddenly cold in just his boxers.

"Well, I mean, I don't have any diseases, and I assume you don't." Brandon said, talking in a very normal voice again, which really surprised Ryan, because just moments earlier you would've thought he was some sexual god, and because of this Ryan, who'd had no idea tonight could be his first night, let himself get caught up in the moment. He'd had enough sanity to stop before anything serious happened, but the kissing and rubbing and all was enough to set his hormones screaming for more, he was very close to forgoing the safe part altogether.

"I... I'm sorry. I just don't think I can do it, I'm not sure, we've only known each other a few days now, only been on one date-" Ryan started.

"Doesn't tonight count? I mean, c'mon, that's two, how long were you planning on going? You're hot, baby, I just want to make you happy. Besides," he leaned close and kissed Ryan's ear, "I've known you were the one ever since I saw you."

Ryan perked his head up in surprise. "What? What are you talking about, the one?"

"You know," Brandon said, kissing at his ear again, "the one, I mean, I know it's soon, but I think I love you baby." Brandon hammered this point home as he kissed heavily on Ryan's neck.

"Uh, no. That's just.. just.. I don't know, that's way too soon. You don't even know me!" Ryan pushed him away gently. "I don't even know you, and I know I'm not in love."

Brandon looked annoyed. "Yeah, so? What did you expect? Alright, let me rephrase this, I've known I've wanted to fuck you since I met you." Ryan look half surprised and half disgusted at this, and Brandon reverted. "I didn't mean that, I'm sorry, it's just, well, baby, you're so hot, I mean, really, you're like the hottest guy I've ever dated. It's like you were put on this earth to be loved by all. A cute thing like you can't go around a silly virgin. You've got to share it, baby, don't be so selfish with this bod of yours."

Brandon again started kissing on him heavily, running his fingers all over his chest, feeling his muscles and then pulling him down onto the bed, and kissing him passionately on the mouth, their tongues met and collided and swirled around until Ryan wasn't sure who's was who's. Brandon ran his hand down over his chest, his stomach, under his waist band-

"Hey!" Ryan said, and using those finely tuned muscles of this, pushed Brandon clear off the bed. He made a slight thumping noise as he hit the ground, and the bed bounced. It was pretty funny, and Ryan would've laughed, if that hadn't been his first boyfriend ever, or, at least, the first guy he had ever dated. It was odd, this whole thing seemed stupid, nothing at all like what the movies always portrayed. He wondered what it would've been like to see Rose kick Leonardo Dicaprio and his little sketch pad off the bed, and he make that very same thump. Suddenly, he did feel like laughing.

"Goddamnitt! Ow, fucker, jesus." Brandon said, and all the thoughts of laughing or anything comical left Ryan's head.

"Yeah, exactly what I thought. I can't believe this, I just, I mean, the first guy, my first guy! Nothing more than a, than a, a sex starved maniac!" Ryan felt stupid the second he said it, like some childish term you'd use on a elementary playground. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean that, I'm just, I'm just not ready. Maybe after we get to know each other better, and we have a condom."

"Stupid tease. That's all you are. You just slut around, being as cute as humanely possible, all to give me blue balls. Fucking tease." Brandon got up, rubbing his tail bone, apparently where he hit.

"Right. Well, then, I guess you'll want to take me home now, actually, I think that'd be best for both of us." Ryan was angry now, Brandon was just being mean.

"Ha! You think I wanna do anything for you after what you just did to me? That hurt man. I don't think I feel like taking you home now." Brandon said.

"Oh, c'mon, you're not serious. I live on the other side of town!. I don't wanna walk at this time of night, that's crazy!"

"Well, I guess we'd better fuck then, because there's no other way I'm driving you anywhere." Brandon now had a triumphant smirk on his face.

"I don't think so. I'd rather walk then fuck you. Go fuck yourself." Ryan got up and started to put his clothes on.

"Fine, suit yourself. God, you're no fun." Brandon laughed, and walked into the bathroom, shutting the door behind him.

Ryan started to cry as he dressed. He looked around at the alien room, the bed and dresser and possessions of someone else, and he thought about calling his parents. But what would he say? They didn't know he was gay, and he really didn't want to leak anything to them. He was only a sophomore in high school, there was plenty of time for all that coming out stuff later. Brandon, however, was a born faggot. He was a flamer by definition, just without the lisp. He could pass for straight, but he chose not to. Ryan just didn't understand him, but then again he was older, he was eighteen. Ryan realized he must've been the perfect catch for Brandon, a cute sixteen year old. What more could one want?

Ryan, however, knew he was more than that. He was worth a lot more, he had a personality and interests and a sense of humor to go with the exceptional looks he had. He wanted someone to love, someone he could have a relationship with. Sure, he wanted sex, but he wanted to cuddle and just be intimate, meaning close, with someone. Going to the local gay hangout, a diner called Polly's, probably wasn't the best idea. It seemed like most of the guys there were there for sex.

Ryan, red and wet faced, stormed down the stairs and opened to door to leave. Brandon appeared at the top of the stairwell.

"Hey, you're really leaving? Aw, c'mon, man, I didn't really mean it, I'll take you home, really! Just come back up here, we don't have to do anything!" But Ryan wasn't going to fall for all of that again. He slammed the door behind him, hearing an angry "dick tease" yelled after him. What a night this was turning out to be, he thought.

Brandon lived in an apartment complex, he had graduated high school and was working. The whole lure of living without parents had looked good to him, and was probably part of the reason he went their in the first place. Being able to be open and flirt around and do everything Ryan wasn't comfortable doing in public was very appealing to him in this small apartment.

But all that was over. Ryan was charging down the street, hunched over and suddenly at a lost for all the muster and anger he had before. The silence of the night was frightening to him, and he disliked Brandon even more for putting him in this situation. Maybe he was a tease, though. I mean, it was clear what Brandon was after, and that that's all he was after, but Ryan hadn't made it clear exactly what it was he was after, or wasn't after, had he?

All the doubt and self-loathing set in now. He began once again to hate this whole gay thing. Nothing seemed to work out, from the hurtful and pointless crushes he had at school, to the failed tries at finding another like him. He's tried the local groups, which contained all older guys, to the internet, and many other dead ends. He just couldn't find someone he liked, or someone that wasn't just after sex. The clubs were his last resort, because he knew that most went to find someone to take home for the night. He found Brandon, though, who seemed fine, and nice, to boot. He had treated him like a king (or is that queen?) when they first met, and had been great up until the whole bedroom thing. He felt defeated, again, and this time he didn't think what to do next. He was tired of trying, maybe he should just give up on finding a loving relationship, at least that way he wouldn't feel rejected, at least he would be getting laid.

Ryan walked on into the night, deep in thought, his face cold now from the dried tears that glistened on his cute and round face.

Calvin and Rachel...

The café was low lit and gloomy. It looked more like a place to sulk rather than to relax. The red and blue lighting seem to give off a sort of creeping panic, like something crazy was about to break out but you didn't know when. Well, that's how Calvin interpreted it, anyway.

"Tell me, Rachel, when do you think a person should give up on love?" He asked, sipping from his coke and looking out the window at the moonlit sky. Tonight he was in an especially skeptic mood, one of those days where everyone he ran into was guilty of being evil until proven otherwise.

"Oh, shove it. Don't start that melodramatic crybaby bullshit with me. I'm not in the best of moods either." Rachel said, sitting opposite Calvin in a booth. She was drinking some fruity alcoholic drink, even though they were both underage, Rachel was friends with most everyone who worked there and could get whatever she wanted. She was a nice girl, and a great friend to Calvin, but she was ultra-real, she really didn't play into Calvin's more creative and moody environment. She believes he created it all from himself, that things really weren't as bad as he thought they were. She helped him balance things in his life, and he made sure she was never bored. They really were quite the odd couple.

"I mean, being gay is bad enough, but being gay and wanting a meaningful relationship? I swear, Rach, I'm doomed, just plain doomed to a life of solitary amusement." He surveyed the room, doing his usual, looking for some lost soul, some lone person that he could sweep off their feet and walk off into the sunset with. But that was impossible, both because it was night out, and because there was no such looking person in sight, as usual.

"You can always just commit to a life of one night stands and freaky sex." She said, stirring her straw around in its glass, watching the drink intensely. She was getting a little drunk now, this was her fourth or fifth drink this evening. She didn't admit to being an alcoholic, but sometimes, in the haste of a hangover and the consequences of the day after, she often considered such a state. She really only came here, after all, for the booze. She liked hanging out with Calvin, of course, they were best friends, but she could do that at any number of places. Calvin wasn't the one that suggested they come here, it was always her. She thought sometimes that maybe he really had given up on finding someone, after all it had been a burden lately trying to get him to drive her here. She wasn't a lesbian, but she liked hanging around all these types of people. The guys, especially, seemed like some of the most interesting and entertaining people she'd ever encountered. Something about knowing for certain a guy has absolutely no intention of trying to get down your pants has its satisfaction. That's why her and Calvin were such great friends. Lately, however, Calvin seemed to catch on to her increasing drinking problem, and seemed a little bitter at having to come here. You could always tell he was tired of being here when he started in on the topic of casual sex and empty love.

"... and really, why are all these people here? Sex isn't really this great, and are they all oblivious to all the dangers and diseases? Yeah, there's safe sex, but that makes it even less fun, and don't these people have lives? How can they come here day after day hunting for prey, and then go back to school or a nine to fiver knowing that they were sluts the night before? What could be so-" Calvin was interrupted.

"Hon, I gotta go to the bathroom, be back in a minute." Rachel said, and got up from the booth.

"Okay, don't get beat up by the lesbians, babe." Calvin said, as a joke, of course.

"Don't worry, I brought my cattle prod."

"Heh." Calvin chuckled as her friend made her way to the restroom. He really was worried about her. She didn't look so good, again, and he knew she had drunk too much already. She really was drinking a lot, and he didn't exactly know what to say. She seemed so much more distracted lately, and always focused on getting through the day just to come here. He supposed, though, that it'll work itself out, and since she didn't drive much, he didn't think there was a D.U.I. in her future. She wasn't that stupid, anyway.

Little clear drops had formed on the window, it was raining. What a depressing night, Calvin thought. It seemed like there was supposed to be so much more to it, like some secret thing was passing him by, he was missing some big point. He realized he hasn't had any real fun in months. It's just been working, college, and nights here. At first he came here with hopes of meeting someone serious, but after the few he'd tried he quickly discovered the purpose here. Which, he thought, wasn't really the only reason people came here. It's just that the people who do want a real relationship either conform to the casual sex scene and lose themselves, or they simply look elsewhere. Calvin really didn't know why he kept coming back. I mean, yeah, Rachel always wanted to go, but something inside himself did too, something inside him still had this hope of finding a guy around his age with a real personality. Now, of course, he wanted good looks, but who didn't? Calvin himself was no super model, but he was attractive enough to be able to fit into that casual sex scene if he wanted to, where you needed either good looks or money. Although maybe he was making it all out to be something worse than it was. Yeah, there really wasn't that much prostitution, just the occasional forty-something looking for a guy for a night. That didn't happen too often. Maybe it was all just a big group of friends, maybe they all did care about each other in some way, and they just all had a lot of sex.

Calvin still, however, didn't understand the big thing about sex. It seemed really odd, almost embarrassing, to take off his clothes in front of some near stranger. He just didn't get why people loved all that. Sex was great, yeah, but could it be that good? Did he just have a few bad orgasms?

"I think I'm ready to head on out, how about you?" Rachel said, standing in front of the table, waking Calvin up from his thought trip.

"Yeah, sure. Wait, you don't want to finish your drink, do you?" Calvin said, smiling.

"No, thanks," said Rachel, sluggishly, "I think I've had my fill, Cal." She warily made her way towards the door.

"You know, I think you've had enough fill for both of us." He said, as he opened the door for her. As they were leaving Calvin almost bumped right into someone, he had seen him once or twice before, he was pretty cute, although a big part of the casual sex brigade. What was his name? Brad? Brandon? Yeah, that was it, Brandon.

Calvin opened the door to his old Camaro and watched a somewhat drunk friend try to navigate her own way in. It would be funny, if he didn't know the possibly serious implications behind all this. Somehow, it was hard imagining Rachel to be an alcoholic. Hell, it was hard imagining anything lately, he was practically an adult, and having a hard time accepting the cold truths that came along with such a title. Such imperfections and problems like drinking and sex were suddenly a bigger part of your life than you wanted them to be. Calvin turned the ignition key, and the old car sputtered to life. He wondered why it was that as a child he was able to have the best and easiest time of his life, but had to be so naive as to not realize it. Decided it was worthless to dwell on, he put the car in gear and pulled out of the newly wet parking lot.


"Brandy! How is my little queen tonight?" The bartender said.

"Ok, I guess, How's your's been, Jerry?" Brandon said, sitting down at the bar and pulling out a cigarette.

"What? No witty comeback? What's the deal tonight, friend?" Jerry said as he wiped down the counter in front of him.

"I don't really wanna talk about it." Brandon said as he lit up.

"Problem with the locals, Brady?"

"No, actually, my neighbors have been somewhat tolerant lately." Brandon took a drag and surveyed the place as usual, looking for the hottest piece of meat he could see.

"Then what is it, guy?" Jerry filled a glass with beer and set it in front of Brandon.

"Oh, you know that guy I was with the other day?"

"Yeah, his name was Ryan, right?:"

"Yeah, that was it. Well, the fag was totally into me, we were making out on my bed, having a good old time, and then he suddenly pulls this 'do you have a condom?' thing on me, and I'm like 'no' and he like freaks out on me thinking I'm some diseased maniac. I mean, c'mon, do I look like some dirty diseased hag to you?" Brandon took a big gulp of the amber colored liquid and winced. He still hadn't gotten quite used to the taste.

"Oh, baby, I'm sorry, so what'd he do?" Jerry pulled out a bottle of some foreign beer and slid it down the table.

"Well, after I told him no, he kicked me off my own bed and proceeded to lecture me on the how he just wasn't ready for all this, and how he wanted to get to know me, and all then I told him that I really wanted him, that he was the cutest thing I'd laid eyes on, and he freaked out again and called me a sex-starved maniacal slut." He said, the bartender putting on a sad look and patting him on the shoulder.

"Oh, baby I'm sorry, it's a shame that a pretty thing like you get hurt like that."

"I know, and so then I told him I'd take him home, and he was angry by now, and he told me no way, that he'd rather walk, and he told me to fuck myself and he left." Brandon said in his best soft voice.

"Damn, what a total ass! I mean, he builds you up all night, and then he doesn't satisfy your needs. He's a totally selfish bastard, honey, and you deserve better. What a dick tease." Jerry said, then walked over to another guy that had just sat down.

"Exactly." Brandon said to himself. He took another drag and blew smoke up into the air. He couldn't believe Ryan, all that play and those looks and that kissing, damn! It was just so annoying, guys today are just way too formal and stuck up, Brandon thought. Ryan was lucky to be getting a guy like him, but he just had to waste it. Well, Brandon would make sure everyone here knew about Ryan, that he was one of those controlling boyfriend types.

Still, Brandon couldn't help but wonder, did he misread him? Ryan had only been here a few times before he met him, and he supposed Ryan wasn't here for the same that most of the guys here were for. Hell, when Brandon had first come here, he had also been looking for a boyfriend. One that would last, someone he could confide everything in, someone he could count on, someone to be with more than a night. He remembered dreaming of just being with a guy, just holding him for awhile, and not doing anything. Those fantasies were gone now, though. Now he didn't know what he fantasized about, he really didn't think he had many, except for wishing he had more money. Now, everything seemed to focus around sex, if he wasn't currently screwing somebody, he was looking for someone new. This all happened quite frequently, he'd date a guy for awhile, they'd have sex, sometimes more than once, but often just once, and they'd both move on. He rarely ever even stayed friends with them. Deep down, though, with every new guy he found, he always wondered if he could be the one. They'd have sex, though, and it'd be just the same as the previous one, he felt nothing afterwards. Ryan, however, seemed special, like maybe after they fucked he'd feel something more. Or maybe Ryan was just special because he was young, Brandon always got off to thinking he'd be the first guy to put a part of himself inside another's. Was it possible, though, that sex wasn't the best route to what he wanted? What did he want, really? Could he go through life like this, this never ending orgy? He felt happy, but simply that he was questioning that he was is a sign that he's not. "I'm probably just telling myself that," he thought. Ryan could have been the one, and he'd gone too far too soon, and his own pride had kept him from realizing this. Suddenly, he felt a lot worse than the simple rejection he felt. He felt as if he'd violated some principle, like he was a rapist, a rapist of the mind. What had he done to Ryan, and did Ryan think he was this absolutely awful person now, and that he really was just a sex starved maniac?

The worst thing was, though, that Brandon himself couldn't be sure that he wasn't. Maybe he should rethink this whole casual partner routine.

"Hi sexy, what's your name?" Said a dark haired and cute guy dressed in the most fabulous fitting jeans and a T.

"You got it, man, that's my name. Sexy." Brandon said, taking another drag, smiling, and exhaling the smoke from his mouth.


It was very cold out, and Ryan, neglecting to notice the change from summer to fall, hadn't brought a coat or jacket with him. Mostly because he never expected to be outside for more than a few minutes, certainly not this long. The rain didn't help.

So he was wet, cold, and very frustrated. He was very much beginning to regret his decision earlier. No, no, that was ridiculous, having sex just for a ride home was not the way he wanted to experience his first time. Still, if he hadn't of resisted, he'd probably be lying naked in Brandon's arms right now, warm and not a virgin.

This whole thing seemed out of control. He felt stupid, as if maybe he'd freaked out for all the wrong reasons, maybe sex wasn't as big a deal as he'd originally thought. Maybe sex was just something people did. Maybe it wasn't this awesome experience that should be praised and reserved for those in love, those who are ready to share themselves totally. Perhaps, sex was completely and wholly loveless. An act which many did in recreation, something which shouldn't be reserved for those in love, because maybe it's not quite so spectacular. What, then, Ryan thought, could possibly show love the way he always thought? He'd figured sex, or "making love," as he'd always thought in context, sex was so dirty, he figured it ought to be something great, something so sensual and personal that there was no other way to show the one you were with just how much you cared.

He'd always pictured his first time very much like the movies. Low lighting, candles even, with very passionate kissing under the covers, and words of love and the look of pure acceptance and intimacy in the eyes. Now, everything seemed so spoiled, like sex was this ugly thing that animals did, animals with crazy looks in their eyes, looks of rage and lust, every animal fucking to their hearts content, everyone on the planet fucking like dogs. Everything seemed crazy now, and everyone seemed so insensitive. Maybe this is why religion considers lust one of those seven deadly sin things.

He trudged along, deep in thought and wary of the long walk even still ahead. How easy it would be if he'd driven, how convenient a car would be right now. He had this very desperate feeling now, and he felt like running. He was seeing just how vulnerable he was right now, he simple and exposed he was. Suddenly, casual sex seemed not to be quite as horrible as it first had been.

As if to punctuate his thoughts, a man stepped out in front of him and Ryan stopped dead in his tracks. He was older, much older, no doubt about it. He was wearing a long black coat, with brown trousers and he sported at least a day or two of stubble. Everything about him, his hair, stance, and body seemed very tired, but his eyes said something else. His eyes had a very fierce look in their eyes, a look Ryan had seen before, but couldn't quite pinpoint. Except, maybe the eyes of an animal.

"It's a little late out to be walking so freely, don't you think?" The man said, in a very calm and cool voice.

"I don't know. I- I lost my ride home, so I'm walking." It was a mistake and Ryan knew it, but he wasn't exactly thinking as the words flew out of his mouth. He was suddenly sweating, and if he held him arm out straight, he knew he'd be shaking.

"Oh, well then, why don't you come with me? I'll get you warmed up, and then I'll take you home." The man said it almost sarcastically, like he was actually trying to put forth that wasn't his intention. Ryan didn't need any kind of sign to know what this man's real intentions were.

"N-No, no thanks. I'm fine. I mean, um, I'm enjoying the walk, you know." He was stuttering over his words.

"Really, though, in this cold? I don't think so, I think you should come with me. I'll help you out, show you a good time. C'mon, I know you don't want to walk in this." He said, still as calm and cool as before.

"Really, no, I don't want to. Thanks anyway, I'll b-be going now." Ryan started to walk past him, but the man grabbed his shoulder.

"I've got money. You could make a little cash, and get a ride home. You don't have to do anything, I'll do everything for you, I'll make you feel so good, better than you've ever felt. You're so fine, kid, I just want to make you happy." Hunger had taken over his collectiveness, and the man now looked desperate. His grip increased as Ryan's alarmed expression turned to horrified. He tried to break free, but the man just gritted his teeth and grabbed to get a hold over Ryan. Ryan pushed and grunted, trying to break free.

"Get off me!" Ryan tried to say, but his voice cracked, something it hadn't done since he'd first entered puberty. His eyes saw red, panic and fear consumed him, which all quickly turned to rage. He reached back with his one free arm, and threw it at the man, hitting him awkwardly on the jaw. The slight crack it made sent the man into a fall, instantly letting Ryan go of his grasp.

Ryan turned and fled down the street, running like he'd never before, running to get away, far away. He didn't know what direction he was running in, he had no idea where he was going. He just knew he had to get away, had to distance himself as far as possible from that man, what he saw in his eye was not some sort of monster, but rather, what he saw in the man when he grabbed him, he saw genuine fear and desperation. When he hit him, a look of hurt, actual hurt, gripped the man, and he looked as if he'd just woken up, as if he realized then what he was doing.

It didn't scare Ryan that the man intended to rape him, or whatever, what scared him was that look. That man wasn't a monster like he'd always thought of those kind of people, in fact, what Ryan saw in his eyes, Ryan saw a person. He saw the look of someone who was as equally scared as Ryan was, only with a hint of longing. There was no diabolical laugh as Ryan ran away, no evil remark. The man just laid there on the ground, staring off into nowhere, looking in just a state of panic as Ryan had been.

He was crying again. Ryan didn't really feel anything, he was just crying. He didn't know where he was, and he was very tired. All of the adrenaline had left now, he used it all up in running. His lungs were burned every breadth of cold air he took, and his fist hurt from where he hit the man. It looked like it might swell.

He realized he'd never felt so bad about being gay in his life. He despised this life that had been thrown on him, he didn't seem to fit it. If it really was all just sex, fucking despicable dirty sex, then he didn't want it at all.

"FUCK!" He screamed into the night. He cursed whatever or whomever did this, what gene or path or what the fuck ever caused this, even if it was himself, he cursed it. He hated it all. All he ever wanted was someone he could be with. He didn't care about sex, or looks, or anything anymore. All he wanted was to be close to someone right now. He wanted to collapse in their arms and cry for hours about everything in the world, he wanted to confide every hope and thought and fear and desire he'd ever had, he just wanted someone to purely listen. A pair of ears without a mind or a dick or whatever with hidden agenda. Someone to hold him and comfort him, to tell him that they felt this all too, and that no matter what happened, that they'd still be there, that there was something consistent in this existence.

He fell on his knees and curled up into a fetal position. He'd stopped crying, but he was way too tired and afraid to go anymore. He didn't know where he was going, anyway. He didn't even know where he had landed, other than it being soft earth. He was too afraid to open his eyes suddenly, not really afraid of another like the man, but afraid that he'd discover, once and for all, that he was truly alone.

"Hey, kid, are you alright?" Ryan opened his eyes, expecting some old man in a black coat with that animal look in his eye. Instead, however, he found a guy, looking to be at least near his age, with a dark blue jacket and a look of concern. There was a car, an old Camaro, idling softly behind him.


"You know, maybe you've been drinking too much lately, Rach." He said it. Finally. It took more courage than he'd originally thought it'd take to tell his friend anything, but he finally was out with it.

"Any maybe you need a boyfriend. We all have our problems, Cal, you're gay, and I'm an alcoholic. No one's perfect." Rachel said, and Calvin was hurt.

"Hey. You see, that's the alcohol talking, because I know my sober and real friend knows that being gay isn't a problem, and while I'm not perfect, being gay certainly doesn't attribute to being imperfect." Calvin said, knowing full well he was a sober man trying to reason with a drunk. This wasn't going to happen tonight.

"What?" Rachel said, in a tone that told Cal she hadn't been paying a bit of attention.

"Really, though, Rach, you've gotta stop this getting drunk every night. It's really not healthy." Calvin said.

"God, you act like you're my mom. And is this really the best time to talk to me?" Rachel said, although it took awhile and slurred slightly.

"Yeah, I guess. Thank god you're not my child, too, I'd be on numerous drugs, have no hair, and probably be a bitter drunk myself." Calvin said, a little mean, but he knew Rachel wasn't drunk enough yet to not know he was joking.

"Thanks hon." She said.

Silence again. What an awkward moment. Usually, they'd be wrestling over one of those topics you can't prove the other wrong or right on, and they would just talk for hours about it. He remembered so many times when they never had to go anywhere, just driving and talking were entertainment enough. Those days seemed lost, somehow. He didn't know what Rachel was going to do about her problem, if anything. He hoped somehow this was the worst of it, but he knew she hadn't seen any consequences aside from the hangover, so more than likely it was yet to get worse. Consequences even, these days it seemed, still never taught people. Calvin, however, would be there for all of it. He'd stay by her, because she'd been there for him, especially when he first came out, and because he was a friend.

"Well, it's been great sir, you'll excuse me if I don't invite you in for tea and.. and... coffee." Rachel said, still drunk.

"It's jerky, babe, beef jerky. And it's okay. Call ya tomorrow." Calvin said as he reached over to pull the door handle, apparently she was drunker than he thought.

"No, hon, I don't think it's beef. But call me anyway, I'll be ear. Bah." Rachel said and stumbled out of the car, making her way slowly to the front door of her apartment. Her roommate was up, and Calvin could tell, and that made him feel a little better. She could take care of Rach now, he thought.

He left the parking lot of the complex, and headed out. The usual stuff was running through his mind, what he was going to do tomorrow, worrying about Rachel, thinking about school, whatever. Thankfully, he'd lost most of the thought train he'd had earlier, and decided it wasn't worth solving tonight, that love and sex and everything opposite or in between would just have to wait for another bar conversation.

Something ahead caught his view. There was something laying in the grass, curled up, it looked to be... a body? Calvin couldn't believe it, this neighborhood at least wasn't known for problem drinkers as bad as that. He'd seen it on a few corners, it was nothing new. For some reason, however, he couldn't stop looking. That body looked smaller than the usual drunk, maybe, and didn't look quite so dirty. Calvin, against his better judgment, pulled off to the side of the road to see what it really was.

He wasn't ready for it. It was this guy, this young guy from what it looked, and he was just curled up, it looked like he might be shivering, and looked so wet and cold, Calvin's heart felt as if it was going to melt right there. He felt like he'd just discovered this puppy dog with a broken leg.

"Hey, kid, are you alright?" Calvin asked. The guy opened his eyes, and he looked like a deer. Literally, some frightened animal caught in headlights. It was almost comical, if it wasn't for the fact that this guy really looked scared. Calvin just stared when the guy didn't answer. He was noticing, however superficial, that, well, this guy was pretty good looking. Absolutely gorgeous, in fact.

"Are you high? Drunk? Hurt? What? Can I help you?" Calvin was suddenly desperate to help this guy. He never felt more needed and never wanted to be more needed than now. The guy looked up at him more clearly, his mouth fluttered, and he looked like he was about to speak.

Brandon and.....

"Hey there. Wanna make some money?"

Brandon looked over at the voice that addressed him. He was drunk as he came out of the bar, after an overall unsuccessful night he'd taken one too many complimentary beers from the bartender.

"What?" He asked, looking dumbly over at a man who was out of the street light, causing Brandon to squint to see him clearly. He was tall, and much older looking. He had stubble and was wearing brown pants, under a black coat.

"I asked if you wanted to make some money. I've got enough, all you've gotta do is give me a little of your time." The man said all this very slowly, almost cautiously. He looked tired, and his face was weary. He didn't seem quite as lively as the usual men hunting for sex.

"I don't know." Brandon said, aware at once just how drunk he was. He couldn't think, ever since he'd stood up from the bar he'd barely been able to tell which way was which. He suddenly realized there was no way he'd be able to drive home.

"You look like you need a ride. Here, forget all that other stuff, just let me drop you off at your house. We can talk some other time." The man said, stepping out of the shadows with a friendly smile on his face.

Brandon wasn't sure what to think, he felt like throwing up. Everything was happening so fast, it was hard to remember what the man had even said. He did remember something about a ride home, and Brandon knew he needed that. Something in the back of his head told him to run, run home away from this man, but that was absurd. After all, he was pretty strong, if the guy tried anything, he could fend for himself.

"Alright, yeah, can you take me home? I promise, we'll hook up some other time for a couple of drinks here or something. Thanks." It was all slurred, and slow, but the man apparently got the message, because he motioned towards his car, a very plain dark Oldsmobile. Brandon followed him and got in the passenger side, which was already unlocked.

Inside the car, Brandon told him his address and they started moving. The movement of the scenery outside caused him to feel even more sick, so he looked down at the floor. The man said nothing, but Brandon felt chilly, like he could feel eyes on him.

After awhile, Brandon looked up to see trees around him. They had been on the road for exactly how long he didn't know, but he knew at least that it was too long to be going to his house.

"Hey, man, where are we going? This isn't anywhere near my neighborhood." It was a small and squeaky voice he had, he realized, although drunkenly, that he'd gotten himself in way over his head. He looked over at the man, who's eyes were straight on the road.

"We're just taking the long way. I've got something I want to do before we get there, okay? Just relax, you'll be home soon enough." The man said, eyes never leaving the road. Such a calm and cool voice.

"What are you talking about? What things? Hey, I just wanna get home." Brandon said, this time a little louder, and with fear.

"Just relax, I said. It'll all be over soon enough." The man said, and reached over, putting his arm around Brandon. The car stopped, and was turned off. Brandon reached over towards the door handle and saw, much to his surprise, that it was missing.

"You're really cute, you know that?" The man said, putting his other hand on Brandon's leg.

Brandon, feeling a sudden panic as the hand moved up his inner thigh, lurched over, putting his head near his knees, and vomited.

Calvin and Ryan.....

"Save me." The guy said as he laid on the ground. Calvin's heart leaped in his chest, and visions of carrying this guy across a threshold to whatever safety he wanted took over his mind. But Calvin just continued to just look bewildered at him. Then the guy acted more suddenly, he sat up, looked around, and some form of normalness seemed to return to his eyes again. Calvin just stood there, still half bent over, still studying him. The guy looked at him again, and Calvin decided to speak up.

"I'm Calvin." He said, with a very soft voice, softer than he'd intended. He just felt a little more shy than usual.

"Ryan. My name is Ryan." The newly name assigned Ryan said. Calvin offered his hand out, and Ryan just looked at it for a moment, as if pondering it. Calvin was about to withdraw it when Ryan took it. Human touch, not sexually arousing, just comforting, warmed both Ryan and Calvin. Ryan was up on his feet, and their eyes met on level. Neither had to say anything, there was just something there. They both saw the equal longing is the other's eyes. They smiled at each other. Their gaze broke, unfortunately, when a car backfired somewhere.

"I need a ride home." Ryan said.

"Where do you live?" Asked Calvin.

"Over on Broadway. Corner of Market."

"Jeez. That's a long way. Were you walking?" Calvin asked.

"Yeah. And I will never again." Ryan said as they moved to the car. Calvin got in and unlocked the door for Ryan. He got in and looked around, this was all very sudden, but he felt nothing like what he'd felt from both Brandon and that man. The look in Calvin's eyes, even, was something so different. It was like it was devoid of lust, it simply just had compassion in it. Were they in love? No, that was silly, Ryan thought. But was this a person it seemed he could love? That question, although still a little scary, had definite promise. It must've seemed pretty weird to Calvin, Ryan was sure of that, to find him the way he was... and yet, he was still totally accepting, and even caring. He wondered what Brandon would've done in that situation. He certainly didn't want to know what that man would do.

Calvin drove on, towards Broadway. He couldn't believe himself. He'd seen the guy before, at Polly's, the bar. Calvin had just possibly picked up this kid who might be gay, like him! And to top it all off, the first words he uttered were "save me." Calvin couldn't have dreamt something more perfect. He decided he should give it a shot.

"Listen, I was wondering, uh, I think I've seen you at Polly's before, you ever been in there?" He asked.

"Yeah. Actually, I have. That's a gay bar, right?" Ryan couldn't believe his ears, was this guy actually gay?

"Yeah, it is. So, then, uh, well, does that mean you're, you know.." Calvin said, trying to tip toe around all this as much as possibly. His hope was growing, however.

"Gay? Yeah. I've never told that to a stranger, but, well, you seem different. So, I guess that means you are, too?" Ryan was surprised himself at his honesty, but he didn't think there was ever better a time for it. It was like something was falling into place here, the pieces of an extravagant puzzle. How unlikely was it he'd be found be this gay guy, someone who also seemed not to have any interest other than decent, unlike Brandon and that man? He awaited Calvin's response eagerly, looking over at him with anticipation.

"Yup." Calvin said. Shit, Calvin thought. How unromantic was "yup?" He felt like a modern Homer Simpson.

"Cool." Ryan said, trying to keep the feelings of joy from bursting within him. He felt like laughing and crying at the same time. Thankfully, however, he only blushed.

They drove most of the rest of the way in silence, although at one point Ryan did exhibit some courage and grasp Calvin's hand. Calvin simply looked over, smiled, and blushed. This all seemed too unreal, but it was happening.

Calvin pulled into Ryan's drive and stopped. He looked over at Ryan, who was smiling. Instantly, this caused him to smile. Ryan squeezed his hand and let go. He opened the door and hesitated.

"Can I call you?" Ryan said, of course, Calvin had been too stupid to think of anything like that.

"Yeah, of course, I'm sorry. Here." He got out a pen and notebook and wrote down his number. He handed it to Ryan, smiling again.

"You know, this all seems sudden, I know, but, well, I think there's something fateful about this night. You believe in fate?" Calvin said, trying to start one of his little talks. Anything to keep this guy in his car.

"I don't know about fate, but I know at least that there's something special about this. I'll call you." Ryan said and leaned over, giving Calvin a small kiss on the cheek. "See you later, Calvin."

"My friends call me Cal." He said.

"Really," Ryan said from outside the car, "what do your boyfriends call you?" Ryan smiled.

"uh, d-... uh..." Calvin was at a loss, mostly just because he was surprised by the question.

"Later, Cal." Ryan said, and walked away, to his house.

Calvin sat in amazement for a moment, trying to remember and recollect every single second that had occurred just now, making sure he didn't forget a detail. His cheek still tingled from being kissed, and abruptly he shivered. Then, realizing he was idling in Ryan's drive way, he backed out and started to head home.

"Wow." Calvin said to himself. Maybe there was stuff to this love thing. Although he wouldn't mind sex with Ryan, that really didn't matter. He would enjoy it if it ever happened, but if not, there would still be Ryan, and, well, that seemed enough for him.

He smiled brightly as he thought of Ryan, filled with a sense of wonder and hope. Things really didn't look quite as bad now, maybe he'll find what he's looking for after all. He put a CD in by Aimee Mann, turned it to a song called "Save Me," and drove home, singing quietly along with the music.


Well, that's it. It feels good to be writing something new. Oh yeah, this is for wwjd405174460@cs.com, I can't reply to your email!! I don't know what it is, but I keep getting it returned. So, here's a message, thank you for your letter, and I know it's hard to be in your position, I was once too. I survived, though, and everything's a lot better now, unlike what I thought it would be. I'm having a great time in college, and after highschool you will too. Good luck, man. Bye everyone!

neodave@skyenet.net neodavenet@hotmail.com

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