Clay looked down at the boy's hair. It was combed back in a tight, soaking bunch just above the back of his neck. Clay never expressed how great that hair made him feel. The boy, fully aware of his own attractiveness, probably never knew.
“I mean, it's not like we'd do anything serious. You know? I mean this could be a one time thing. Just kinda seeing how it..I dunno, how it feels.” Clay paused, bit his lower lip. “You know what I mean?”
The boy took awhile to answer. Typical. When he wasn't running his mouth – his cute mouth, Clay thought with a twist of his stomach – he was combing that hair. One swipe wasn't enough. No, it usually took twenty to satisfy.
He yanked a piece of grass from the earth. He twisted it, stuck it between his teeth. Then he said: “Yeah. Yeah, I know. I always wondered how it was. But it's up to you.”
What else? Christ, the idea was hard enough to bring up. What else could there possibly be to clarify?
“I mean, where would we do it?” the boy asked. A thin strand of green saliva rolled off his chin. “We'd need a place, and a time, I guess. I never done this before.”
“Me neither,” Clay said.
The boys were sitting on a slopped hill overlooking Camp Greenwood. The mess hall building stood the tallest and ugliest, painted a rancid puke green. One of its windows, the cracked one on the left, glistened in the afternoon sun. Clay had to squint when he glanced downhill, but the boy was wearing a pair of cheap pink sunglasses. He was on his back, staring up at the sky. Clay stood over him. Thinking of what to say next.
“They're always doing camper check up after supper,” the boy said, the grass blade bopping along between his lips. “And in the morning they do it again. And then again after breakfast. So when are we doing it?”
Clay spat. He reached in his pocket and unwrapped a piece of gum. He chewed, not really satisfied. Barely any sugar. The boy once joked that Clay chewed more gum than a chain-smoker smoked.
Clay spat again.
“How 'bout this?” The boy lifted himself from the ground, using his elbows. His hair was corkscrewed in the back and sprinkled with dirt. Soon the plastic comb would be out. “How about we meet here tonight after lights out, or something. After the counselors are sleeping and the guys are sleeping, we'll come down here.”
“Uh, yeah. I guess that'll work,” Clay said, distracted.
“But we'll make it quick. Really quick. We always have a second chance with this, right? If it don't go right this time, there's always next time. You know what I mean?”
Clay knew. He popped another tasteless piece of gum. He knew.
What about the guys? What if they found out?
“Here would be good I guess, but what about Patterson? He always stays up at midnight.” Clay stopped, chewed. The boy was nodding slowly, as if keeping rhythm to a song stuck in his pretty little head. “We need an excuse.”
“We don't need one,” the boy said at once. “Patterson doesn't even like you.”
“If he doesn't like me, he'll turn me..us in.”
“Nah, he won't.”
Clay suddenly felt angry. It crawled up his throat. It made his gum, already lacking flavor, taste like soap. He spat a third time, right beside the boy's pretty blonde head. “What the fuck are you talking about?” he asked.
“C'mon,” the boy said. He hopped to his feet and spat himself, the grass blade dancing and twirling as it fell. “C'mon.”
Camp Counselor Rickley didn't want to be your friend. He only wanted to help, but he wanted to stay put on a strict teacher-student level. Clay was fine with that. In fact he felt relief when Rickley announced this himself on the first day of summer, when Camp Greenwood opened its two oak entrance doors.
When Clay and the blonde boy walked into Rickley's office, he was leaning back on a hard-looking meta chair, his feet propped up on his desk, reading a thin Sci-Fi novel. He was halfway through, his lips slightly pulled apart as his eyes scanned the pages. A grotesque alien and a sexy muscular woman graced the cover.
“Rickley?” Clay said softly. He gave the office door two quick taps just to make sure. Rickley heard. He looked up in mild surprise and marked his place with an old Pokemon card. “Could we talk to you?”
“Sure guys,” Rickley said. He leaned forward. His hair was dry, burnt orange, and tied up in a last-minute ponytail. His skin had a greasy gleam to it. Perhaps the harsh fluorescent lights above were to blame. Clay wasn't sure. Considering the problem on his shoulders at that moment, he didn't care. “Sorry guys about the chairs. You'll have to stand. Sorry.”
“No problem,” the boy said. “We just wanted to ask one question.”
Rickley smiled. A strictly professional smile. A bit ugly. “Shoot.”
“Well, we..” Clay started. He looked over at the boy for support. The boy shrugged, reached into his pocket for his plastic comb. So typical. And this was his idea. “..we wanted to move cabins. We have Cabin 4. We were thinking about Cabin 6. Maybe 7?”
The boy stepped to the plate this time. Four swipes and the comb was gone, retired for the time being. He cleared his throat. “Patterson is so annoying. He's annoying us.” As if for emphasis, or evidence, the boy added quickly, “And he hates Clay.”
Rickley crossed his pale arms and sighed. His eyes fixed on Clay, then switched over to the blond boy.
“I don't like Patterson that much,” Clay said. He was being honest.
He knew Rickley heard the honesty. “Sure, guys,” he gave in. “But you better go pack your stuff now. It's getting dark.”
Clay held back his smile, but the boy couldn't help a crooked grin. Clay saw it before the boy could put it away. His heart fluttered. His cheeks flooded with warmth.
“Thanks!” the boy said.
“Yeah, thanks Rickley,” Clay said.
“Sure, yep,” Rickley said. He got up. “But one thing before you guys go and pack. You guys remember what I said on the first day?”
Clay looked at the boy. The boy looked back. Their faces were blank. It must've been a funny sight, because Rickley chuckled: gawk, gawk, gawk. “I just said to try to tolerate your cabin-mates,” he said. “Even if they're buttheads. Right?”
“Sure, Rickley,” the boy said. “C'mon, you know Patterson's an asshole.”
“I know anyone can be buttheads, kiddo,” Rickley said patently; professionally. “Watch your language in my office.”
Clay finished first. He picked his box up and carried it outside Cabin 4's entrance, holding his breath under its respectable weight. A few books and t-shirts there, two or three CDs here, and he was finished. Piece of cake.
He waited for the boy. He couldn't hear him – the boy was, and had always been, a silent packer – so he sat down on his box and counted the leafs.
What's happening tonight? He couldn't help the question wandering into his head. Once it was there it demanded an answer. What are you going to do? What the fuck is happening?
Clay had spent so much time planning, so much time nervously imagining the feel of the boy, what the boy would do without clothes...Now he couldn't even answer a simple question. A question he asked himself.
Here's the bottom line: Clay didn't know. Nothing can be planned perfectly, Clay was aware of that. Nothing is perfect. The night would just have to unravel, blossom. If it happened, it happened. If it didn't, well....
“But we'll make it quick,” the boy had said, not four hours before. “Really quick. We always have a second chance with this, right? If it don't go right this time, there's always next time. You know what I mean?”
So what exactly did the boy mean by that? Did he plan on doing this with Clay again? Did he like Clay? Did he have a-
“Clay! C'mere a second!”
Clay perked up a bit. He hopped off his box and poked his head into the boy's room.
The smell hit first; a strange mixture of sweat-dried socks, cologne, and bubblegum. Then his eyes adjusted to the room's dim light, and he could see the boy hunched over his own box, his arm under his bed, his tongue stuck out in frustration.
“Help me with this,” the boy told Clay.
They settled on Cabin 6. It stood closest to Burnblack Hill, the boy assured. He was right. The boy assured Clay that the interior would be cozy, that the other campers would have a helluva hard time hearing them. Again, the boy was right on the money.
They stumbled in, dropped their boxes.
“Lookit this,” the boy said loudly. He smiled. He clapped Clay on the back. “Ah, yeah. This is good.”
“Yeah,” Clay said. It has a rug. Lookit the rug.”
“I know, man, I see it.”
The floor was spotless. The windows were streak-free and sent back perfectly-made reflections; Clay and the boy, standing side by side. A table had been nudged into one corner. Books, papers, and candy wrappers littered the surface. The boy picked up the thickest book, thumbed through it.
He dropped it and began a rhythm; stare, touch, smell, chuckle. He treated Cabin 6 like a high class four star hotel room.
It could have been a hotel room, expect for the TV. Someone had broken it.
The smell of cigarette smoke hung in the air. The boy was sucking on a crumpled Camel. Clay hated cigarettes. He tried to persuade the boy not to light up, but it was pointless. Like trying to kick his own gum habit.
He pulled the covers over his nose and counted the brown ceiling tiles. He was naked. The boy was naked.
The boy didn't bother with covers. His dick sat limply on his left thigh, shaven, swollen with greenish veins. Clay gave it a friendly hey-how'sitgoing-look, then turned on his side.
“So what are we doing now?” the boy asked. He blew smoke, and it all seemed to swarm Clay's side. He coughed. “Sorry, man. So what you want to do now?”
“I, uh...I dunno.”
“Well, we have to do something. I mean, you're supposed to do something after you're naked. Like, I dunno...do something.”
Do what? Clay thought. His own penis, smaller and hairier, twitched to life, as if it to was waiting for something.
“I think we should, uh..” the boy paused. He dragged on his cigarette in the meantime. Coughed. Continued: “I think we should suck each other.”
Clay sat up. Something pierced his heart then, reminding him of the feeling he got whenever his name was mentioned during the morning announcements at school. The feeling always subsided on his way to the office, but that was at school. This feeling stayed.
“Here, I'm putting out my cigarette. Get ready, you're goin' first.”
Jesus. Jesus fucking Christ.
Finally happening. Clay could hardly believe it. He could hardly throw the cover off his lap, his dick was so erect. It looked almost purple in the moonlight leaking in.
“Nice,” the boy said, rubbing the tip. Clay moaned and shut his eyes. “Man, you want it. Don't you? Keep your eyes closed.”
Clay propped his head on a pillow, pushed back so the boy would have room to...work. He clutched Clay's thighs. He spread them until Clay heard his pelvis crack. A cool draft swept over his asshole, his ballsack, and he moaned again.
“What?” Clay asked. Eyes closed. Fists behind his head.
“Your asshole's really hairy. And your thighs-”
“Just do it,” Clay said forcefully. But he had a smile.
Those were the last words Clay remembered. Then the pleasure paralyzed him, wiped out his entire thinking process. “Oh, god,” he moaned in Cabin 6.
Clay took the bedsheets in his fists. By now he was sweating like a bitch. His bang were drenched. His back felt sticky and itchy. But he didn't fucking care. The pleasure was too great, too big.
His feet were up. The boy had his mouth full. His head was bobbing up and down in a rhythm even the mattress joined in on. The springs creaked as Clay screamed.
“Goofhod?” the boy said against skin.
The boy heard loud and clear. He kept up his rhythm. It was so perfect, almost rehearsed. His hands ended up on Clay's stomach, playing with his curled chest hair. Then his finger traveled south, tickled Clay's lower thigh, the space just below his ballsack, just above his...
“No, man. Not yet. It's gonna hurt.”
The boy took his mouth off Clay's cock, which was dripping and throbbing. He started a slower but more comfortable rhythm with his free hand. “Nah, it won't. It looks lose. I can't believe I found it with all this hair.”
“Very funny. Just c'mon and keep going.”
The boy continued.
It built slowly, starting at Clay's throat and then spreading to his stomach, the tip of his penis. Familiar, of course. He'd jerked off at least a million times since his first pump-pound in fourth grade, when he was only eleven.
But this feeling felt different. The fourth grade feeling built a dinky lego bulding. This feeling – the Camp Greenwood feeling – was building a fucking skyscraper. Building the Effel Tower and squeezing the Empire State Building on top.
Rhythm; up down, lick, suck, down up.
He couldn't control his feet. He had them wrapped around the boy's midsection, his toes buried in the boy's smooth ass cheeks. When he got tired of clasping the bedsheets, he decided on stroking the boy's beautiful blonde locks. The boy didn't mind. This was an exception. The boy, Clay supposed, gave in easily with a dick in his mouth.
“Little harder,” Clay said.
The boy made it harder.
The boy picked up the pace. His lips were smeared with his own spit, and Clay's cum.
Speaking of cum...
“Cuphmi'?” the boy mumbled.
Clay nodded. No more words. His tongue was frozen as the feeling hit every inch of his body. He cocked his head back as far his spine would allow, as far as the mattress would allow, and screamed.
Building, building. Bubbling to the surface. Soon he'd cum. He'd fucking choke the boy, but he couldn't help it.
The shape was just below the water. Clay could see it, dark and looking lovely. Soon it would burst through the surface and drench everything. The boy's face. The bedsheets. The ceiling, fuck if it could. Fuck it it couldn't.
Suddenly the boy's lips were gone. The shape dropped a little, and Clay – picturing all this in his head – struggled to see it. Struggled to persuade it.
He caught his breath. “Wha-what are you doin-”
“Shut up,” the boy said, and climbed on top of Clay.
Clay opened his eyes. The boy was sweating, his face so close to Clay's..He kissed his lips, and he tasted Chap Stick. Clay was sure his own lips tasted like gum.
But the boy wasn't listening. He grabbed his cock, stiff and at least seven inches, thrust it into Clay's ass, and began a third rhythm. Much more violent. Much more forceful, and sloppy, and determined.
The boy grunted. Clay shrieked.
“OW. NAH! C'MON, STOP!”
Another grunt. That was Clay's answer. He couldn't even see the shape in the water now. His dick went limp. He punched the boy on the chest. The boy laughed.
“C'mon, Clay. Dude. Just relax. Relax. I need to do this.”
“DUDE. RELAX.” Like a teacher talking to a retard. “Close your eyes.”
Clay tried. The pain kept them open. His asshole was ripping down there, he could feel it. Something was dripping down his leg, he was sure it was blood. Not cum. Not the boy's.
“Relax. Rela-ugh. Relax.”
Pump. Pump. Thrust. The shape came back, and so did his erection. The boy's rhythm was better than ever.
Everything was back on.
“Ugh, uh, AH!”
The sounds of sex echoed against the walls. The springs creaked. Clay had his hands around the boy's neck, the boy had his lips on Clay's cheek. Their damp bodies collided, stuck, and the sound joined the others.
Clay had to cum. The feeling was back, and it was somehow stronger.
“Man, I'm cumming!”
“Hold on,” the boy answered.
Another thrust. The boy's dick was smeared with sweat and shit. He didn't look down, only felt Clay's pleasure, smelled the smells.
He couldn't hold it back. You can't hold a dolphin down, you can't tell it not to break the ocean surface. The shape broke the surface. Clay came everywhere. He could almost hear the pinched squirt. He certainly saw the squirt. The boy's chest caught everything. On the third pump, the bedsheets were the target. “Uhhhh.”
“I aint done yet,” the boy pronounced. He gave his final thrust strength. “AH!”
It was all over. Clay felt as if someone had loosened his bowels. Everything came out, the blood, the cum, the shit. His asshole twitched. He farted. The smell seemed to haunt the air. It stank of shit, and blood, and cum. Clay tried to cover himself, but the boy pulled his hand away. “Let it out,” he said, panting, wiping his chest. “You're probably going to shit blood.”
“I don't care,” Clay said. He was staring at the sliver of moonlight outside. It must have watched everything from up there. It almost seemed to applaud.
Clay cleaned himself up. He found a fresh pair of boxer shorts, slipped them on, checked himself in the bathroom mirror. He looked horrible. But he looked happy.
When he walked out, the boy was on an armchair, flipping through the textbook he'd found earlier. He was still naked, but clean. No sweat.
“C'mere,” he said, his eyes still on page four-hundred. Clay sat down next to him. His asshole kept twitching, and walking made it worse.”You smell good.”
“Thanks,” Clay said. He kissed the boy on the cheek, and looked down at the textbook.
“Read this poem,” the boy said. “Right there, at the bottom.”
It was written by a guy named Otto Baumberger. Baumberger's picture was included beside the text; handsome, with a long salt-pepper beard and thick eyebrows. Wearing a suit and tie. Frowning.
“I will build a window,
I will open a window,
What will you see?”
Clay remained silent as he finished the last word, the last question mark. He ran a finger over Baumberger's picture, as if that would reveal the poem's mystery,
“I like it,” the boy said. “I don't know what the hell he's talking about.”
Clay didn't have a clue either, but he liked the picture the poem painted inside his head.
Clay and the boy, holding hands outside a beautiful home. Clay and the boy kissing. A carpenter working on the windows. He finishes. It's Otto Baumberger himself. Yeah. His beard is dripping with sweat. “There ya go,” he says, motioning to the final window, which happens to be the biggest. Clay and the boy wander over, hand in hand, cheek to cheek. They look through. Clay cries, and the boy soon follows.
They're looking at a decked out living room. They're looking at grand kids and parents, and themselves, and little kids, and a Christmas tree, and a roaring fireplace, and Clay's father, proud of his son. His gay son.
“I'm cold,” Clay said “It's cold in here.”
The boy smiled. He dropped the textbook and Otto Baumberger down on the coffee table. He spread his hairless thighs. His asshole looked loose, which didn't surprise Clay.
Never done this before my ass, he says to himself before starting a little rhythm of his own.