“Enough Time Now”
Jeremy Bynes doesn’t know how to say it, exactly. He has been trying to say it for minutes. Every time the sentence forms on the tip of his tongue and he’s about to open his mouth and spill it out, he loses his confidence and snaps his jaws shut again. But Holden is patient. Holden is older than Jeremy, about two years older. It’s not much of a gap; it’s big enough for patience and maturity to leak through.
“Here man.” Holden offers a perspiring bottle of water to Jeremy. “Just take a deep breath.”
Jeremy does just that. Deep breath in, deep sigh. After that little exercise he chugs water, relishing the painful numbness in his throat.
“I’m sorry,” he chokes. “I just….I just can’t word it right, you know? Fuck, I’m sorry.”
“No problem.” Holden takes the bottle back, caps it, stuffs it in his back pocket. The day is unbearably humid. He’s sweating profusely, his shirt collar already soaked. His bangs are clumped on his shiny forehead. Sweat is even running down his lower back, no doubt pooling in his ass crack like a miniature river bed.
But he is very patient.
“Is it because you’ll think I’ll judge you? Fuck that, man,” Holden says. He dabs at the bridge of his nose with one sleeve. “Fuck that. You know me.”
“I know, but-“
“But just tell me,” Holden pushes gently. Never a rough push. Holden knows that Jeremy is on the edge, and a rough push is the last thing he needs. Instead he needs a gentle tug backward until his feet are touching concrete ground.
“Okay, Holden. Okay. It’s just really tough. I could tell you online. That’s the thing. I could tell you online because I can’t see your fucking reaction. But now….now it’s like I’m so exposed and shit. Give me a cigarette.”
“I quit,” Holden says.
“Yeah, right. Fuck.”
A long pause. Jeremy holds up his index finger and middle-finger as if a cigarette resides there. “Okay, Holden. Dude. I’m trying.”
They are standing outside in Holden’s backyard, which is well-kept and cozy, if not a little too small. Roses over there under the windowsill; dandelions sprouting right over there next to the dilapidated swing set Holden’s dad put together back in the early 90’s. There’s plenty of time left because summer has just unfolded and senior year is millenniums away. Plenty of time to lose your virginity and get drunk in the park when it’s dark and tell your best friend – your best friend since fucking Kindergarten – a deep dark secret to end all deep dark secrets. Holden chuckles to himself. That phrase reeks of middle-school, but there’s no other way to put it. Generally secrets aren’t bright and shallow.
Jeremy clears his throat for perhaps the tenth time. Then he began: “Okay. Uh, you remember when I told you all that shit about Nikki? That she told me she was bi at Frank Weakland’s party?”
Holden gropes. Nikki. Nikki who? Nikki Fincher? Mellon? Does it fucking matter? “Sure,” he says. A featureless girl with a blank face materializes in front of his mind’s eye. The details will fall into place later. As for now, it just doesn’t fucking matter.
“Well, at first it really bugged me. It really bugged me, but I don’t know why. Like it was like Nikki was my daughter, right, nd she just told me that she was pregnant or fucking every guy on the Football team or something. I was just disappointed, that’s all, I guess.” Jeremy took out a pack of gum and popped a piece in his mouth. “It’s stupid, I know. But I loved Nikki, and when I was dating her, everything she told me about her sex life bugged me. You ever see Chasing Amy?”
“Nope,” Holden says. “It’s a Kevin Smith movie, right?”
“Yeah. There’s one character that flips on his girlfriend when he finds out about her past. It bugged the shit out of him. It’s like that. I can’t explain it.
“Anyway, I let it go. But then it hit me. I’m so hypocritical. I’m so stupid and I know it’s just going to weird you out.”
Holden sighed. But he was still so patient. “It’s not going to. Just say it. You’re so close.”
“I’m a hypocrite because….I’m bisexual too.”
The sentence – the sentence that took Jeremy so long to say – hangs in the air like smoke. Holden stands with his hands in his pockets. His heart is beating fast. This is probably what Jeremy felt that night at Frank Weakland’s party, when Nikki (probably tipsy on cheap vodka) came out as bi. It doesn’t have a name. It’s shock; it’s anger; it’s sadness, all rolled in one. So many emotions that pinning a name on it would just be ridiculous.
Jeremy senses Holden’s shock, his anger, his sadness. He hangs his head and starts crying. It breaks the silence, at least.
Holden is almost grateful.
“Oh, God,” Jeremy moans. His face is hidden behind his hands. His shoulders are trembling. “You fucking said…you fucking said you’d no-not get creeped out. Fuck!”
Holden stares off in the distance instead of replying. He sees some neighbors lounging out on their porches, sipping lemonade behind their paperback novels. A dog is galloping back and forth, getting soaked by a sprinkler. It’s hard to believe these things are still unbroken – still functioning. For Holden Poupel, the world should have paused and broke when Jeremy uttered, “I’m a hypocrite because….I’m bisexual too.”
The tables have turned. Now Holden is trying to explain.
Two hours have passed since Jeremy found enough courage to tell Holden his deep dark secret. His face is puffy and pink from crying too much. The water bottle is stuck between his lap, nearly empty.
And he’s patient – just like Holden.
“I don’t know why I felt that,” Holden is saying. “It was like the world was ending.”
“Yeah, I know what you mean.” Jeremy props his feet up on the porch railing. Holden’s parents have gone to sleep. There’s still plenty of time for explanations. It’s a day full of explanations. “Like when Nikki told me she was bi, it felt like I was going to throw up.”
“I’m sorry. I just…why didn’t you tell me before?”
That was the basis of it. Holden felt betrayed somehow; out of the loop, if there ever was one. Why hadn’t Jeremy told him earlier? Why now?
Jeremy pauses. “I was scared. And I just realized it recently. Nikki kind of gave me the confidence. It’s weird. It’s, uh, complicated.”
He’s lying, Holden thinks. Not recently. It’s been going on for awhile. And he didn’t tell me.
“You shouldn’t have kept it inside, man. That’s not good for you. I was here all the time. You could’ve-“
Jeremy suddenly picks up the water bottle and tosses it off the porch. “Yeah, dude. I could’ve. I could have, but I didn’t. What’s the point of going back and trying to fucking change it? Fuck. I’m sorry I didn’t confide in you when I started liking cock. It’s just not something I’m proud of. Fuck.”
For a moment Holden thinks Jeremy will start crying again. But the tears have dried up. Another silent moment crawls by.
“I’m just…” Holden begins. “I’m just trying to figure this out. Like you said, it’s complicated.”
But no. It isn’t complicated. Holden knows what he needs to say. If he says it, it’ll uncomplicated things. A simple concept. But no. He can’t say it. He can’t – A vivid image suddenly pops in Holden’s head. It’s so bright and pure, Holden thinks he’ll go blind. And it’s all just a memory. Someone dims the lights and he can make out the scenery. A beach. Vacant. A beach towel has been laid out, and it’s baking in the sun because no one is there to shade it with their body. Then Jeremy and Holden enter from stage left. Holden is fifteen and Jeremy is about thirteen. It’s his birthday. The Holden watching this memory unfold knows this because Jeremy is wearing a paper birthday hat.
The two friends since Kindergarten shake out the towel. They sit down, inseparable. They’re holding hands and smiling and brushing sand off each other’s bodies.
I knew it was wrong, Holden thinks, eyes closed, watching this memory as if it were an old nostalgic film. I was fifteen. I knew it was wrong to hold his hand but I didn’t care. It wasn’t wrong to me.
When all that pesky sand is gone, Holden reaches in his pocket and pulls out a small handheld radio. He turns the knob and settles for George Harrison’s version of “If Not For You”. Holden sings along while Jeremy stares down at his hand, Holden’s fingers. It was his idea to hold hands. He brought it up in McDonald’s, when Jeremy’s mom and dad were ordering the food. Holden couldn’t make up his mind at first. Then Jeremy took his hand under the table. That decided him.
“This is wrong,” Holden had said. His heart felt like it was going to explode because it was beating too fast. His face had gone red, and his penis had twitched to life and slowly rose against his jeans. “It’s gay. It aint good.”
“It feels good,” Jeremy had said.
And that’s all.
No one is on the beach to witness what happens next. Perhaps that’s a good thing. Perhaps it’s unfortunate that no one was there to witness that beautiful, unprecedented event begin and end, come alive and die off.
Jeremy lets go of Holden’s hand. Holden looks down in surprise. He glances up at Jeremy. He doesn’t have time to say anything. Jeremy leans forward and kisses him, right on the lips. Jeremy’s eyes are squinted shut, but Holden decides to keep his open. He needs to see everything to believe it. The sight of Jeremy’s puckered, sour face is so comical that Holden has to stifle laughter. He doesn’t want to ruin the moment for Jeremy. For both of them.
The moment lasts for about thirty minutes. Occasionally Jeremy will break off to take a swig of soda and let Holden wipe droll from his chin. Then it’s back on.
Holden falls back on the towel. Jeremy is very skinny, but at that moment he feels extremely heavy and warm. Electricity is coursing through Holden’s body, and Jeremy is the lighting rod. Ten more minutes. Five. The world around them – the beach, the sand, the handheld radio – has been forgotten, and the only thing that matters now is the heaviness, the electricity, the wetness. Jeremy senses something hard pushing against his bare chest. He wants to see it and do something to it, but he’s not sure. He is aware of masturbation, but doing it to someone else is foreign terrain.
Holden knows exactly what to do. And this knowledge ends everything, halts everything, stops every wheel. He pulls back and stares up at his friend almost apologetically. “No. Not that. This is weird, Jeremy. No. Get off for a second.”
Jeremy cries in protest. He gets to his feet, not even bothering to conceal his respectable boner.
“Yes! It’s okay. I know what’s going on and I want to do it.”
“No!” Holden snaps, tuning the handheld radio for something to do.
Jeremy grabs his shoulders, spins him around, kisses him; kisses his forehead and nose and eyes and ears. “Please, please, plea-“
But the scene is getting fuzzy. A white light is blowing it away, melting the strip of film. Forty-five minutes. That’s all they had. That’s all the time they had.
Now they have all the time in the world.
Holden comes back to reality slowly. He remembers bits and pieces of the present. He knows he is sitting on a porch swing, and he knows Jeremy is beside him. He has returned from a trip to the beach. He has to shake the sand out of his clothing because the memory was so vivid.
“Dude, what’s wrong?” Jeremy asks.
Nothing is wrong. And that’s an understatement. Things are beginning to click. Something is returning and it’s making its home in Holden’s chest, his stomach, the rest of his organs. He can’t name it, but if he had to he’d call it HAPPINESS, or maybe FREEDOM.
He loves Jeremy. He knows this for a fact, and he can’t deny it any longer. The two of them had created something that day on the beach – the thing called HAPPINESS and FREEDOM. But over time it had died from neglect.
Now….it was alive. Perhaps it had never died. Perhaps it had just decided to sink in the shadows of their subconscious minds, waiting for the perfect instance to come out of hiding.
Now is the time….
“I love you,” Holden blurts out. He doesn’t realize he has spoken until he sees Jeremy’s shocked, pale expression. “I love you, man. Really.”
“Remember that day on the beach?”
Now Jeremy looks as white as a bone. His lips are trembling. “Wh-what?”
“That day on the beach. It was three years ago. We were happy and we were free and then we had to put it all away because it was wrong. Everyone else told us it was wrong because other people told them it was wrong. It’s all just one big fucking rumor. It’s right. It’s all right.”
Jeremy takes Holden’s arm, squeezes hard. Holden winces, but still Jeremy doesn’t let up.
“Holden. What the hell are you saying?” The last word was lost behind a veil of fresh tears. Jeremy started crying all over again. Soon his lap was damp with quarter-sized teardrops.
“You know what I’m saying. You know. I love you. When you said that shit about being bi it all cam flooding back. It sounds stupid. It’s not, and you know it and you love me too.”
Holden catches his breath. His hands are shaking. Jeremy continues to sob into his hands.
He has no clue what Holden is talking about, and yet he does. That day on the beach unlocked so many things. Time had buried so many of those things, but the wind was blowing in their favor, and all those lost treasures were becoming visible again. They were quite dusty and rusty, but…they were there.
“Holden, I love you too. But why did it all come back? Why is it back? Why-“
“I really don’t know,” Holden says. “It all clicked in when you said that. It’s weird. It’s fucking scary. But I’m not stopping it again.”
“I won’t either,” Jeremy says. “I’m not stupid.”
The sun is peering at them from behind a bruised cloud. All the neighborhood sounds are still floating down to them on the sweet air. Time is slipping by. Time is on their side but it won’t be for long.
Jeremy’s hand slips down Holden’s arm. He wraps his fingers around Holden’s. He squeezes, but not too hard.
“It’s like being high,” he says. He has only smoked pot two or three times, but he knows what he’s talking about.”
“Yeah,” Holden says. “Better than that shit. What are we going to do? We’re not going to let it go this time.”
Jeremy thinks with his eyes closed. He likes the darkness, especially when he’s thinking. It draws you in and makes you focus.
His eyes spring open. He gets up from the porch swing and walks inside Holden’s house. Holden follows.
He doesn’t have a choice. Time is running out. If they don’t seize the moment now, they might lose everything.
No sand this time; just crisp, clean sheets and a furry blanket. Jeremy slips his tongue through Holden’s pursed lips, stroking the roof of his mouth. A moan escapes. A t-shirt is flung across the bedroom.
Jeremy – shirtless, wearing nothing but his boxers – unbuckles Holden’s belt. One notch at a time. He grips Holden’s stiff cock with a free hand and starts up a rhythm he has used on himself since he first discovered masturbation at the age of fourteen. It’s good enough for Holden. He’s arching his back, gripping the sheets around him, gnawing his lower lip.
Off with Holden’s jeans. They too are flung across the bedroom and land near Jeremy’s t-shirt.
Jeremy sucks at the fabric covering Holden’s dick. He immediately senses stickiness and saltiness near the tip. Pre cum. Just delicious. He laps at it, making the stain even worse. Now it looks as though Holden has pissed himself. And Holden is trembling with pleasure.
Off with the Fruit of the Looms. Holden’s perfect 6 inch cock flops out, and Jeremy gobbles it up as if it is about to disappear. He sucks with his eyes closed (always with his eyes closed), working the tip with his tongue, stroking the lower part with both hands.
Holden is fucking going crazy. He’s tossing and turning. He lifts his legs and presses his thighs up against Jeremy’s head, closing Jeremy’s ears. That’s perfectly fine. Silence – like darkness – makes him concentrate. And right now he needs to concentrate on his first ever blowjob. His first will definitely not be his last. He can taste Holden’s pre-cum. The saltiness of it; the thickness. Jeremy bops his head back and forth, back and forth. His hair is flailing, he’s bobbing so hard.
“Hey, hey, I’m cumming!” Holden whimpers.
“Gooff,” Jeremy says around Holden’s cock.
He doesn’t slow down. He doesn’t speed up. His rhythm is so perfect, Holden can’t feel his legs. His pelvic region is buzzing. He feels the build up, and he bites down so hard on his lip he sees black spots.
“Ah! I’m-I’m cum-“
“Goof!” Jeremy says. And then he coughs as a jet of cum hits his throat. And another. And another, until Jeremy’s entire mouth is full. He looks up and sees Holden’s sweaty face, his forehead now building with veins.
Jeremy gets up, kisses his friend since Kindergarten, and swallows. The cum doesn’t go down without a fight. There’s a terrible moment when Jeremy thinks he’s going to throw up. But the moment passes quickly enough. He sits on Holden’s naked and damp lap, playing with his cock, which is still convulsing.
“Your turn, bub,” Jeremy says.
Jeremy is on all fours, his heart-shaped ass sticking up in the air. His asshole is winking at Holden, a perfect pinkish red. Holden wonders if Jeremy has ever shoved anything up his ass before.
Well, there’s a first for everything.
“Alright,” Holden says, adjusting the condom on his dick and applying extra lube. Better safe than sorry. “I’m going to do it slow. Tell me when to speed up, okay?”
Jeremy nods against the pillow he was clutching. “Just please do it. I’m fucking so horny, I going to pass out.”
Holden approaches slowly and aims the tip of his cock at Jeremy’s asshole. He swallows. Inserts. Jeremy gasps and rocks forward a bit.
“You okay?” Holden asked.
“Ye-yeah. Just go.”
Holden shoves it in a little farther, about an inch. Once again Jeremy rocks and gasps, but the gasp is more out of pleasure than surprise, which is good. He slips it in farther. Father. Now the entire head of his cock is gone, buried inside Jeremy.
“Ju-just put all of it in.” Jeremy’s voice sounds muffled. He’s biting at the pillow. “Go on.”
Holden sighs, slips it in until his pubic hair brushes against Jeremy’s asscrack.
Holden starts thrusting. Slow. Slow, but gaining speed. Jeremy cries out, gets on his elbows and looks back at Holden, looks him square in the eyes. He’s pleading. More. More.
He gives Jeremy more. He speeds up until the sound of bed springs creaking fills the air. His thighs slap against Jeremy’s. He moans as the buildup starts all over again, dwarfing the last one. This time it feels enormous.
“Oh, fuck me!” Jeremy cries. “Harder! Ah, GOD!”
Holden watches Jeremy’s ass jiggle. He watches his cock slide in and out. Hide and seek. Thrust and repeat. He feels his tip jabbing at something squishy and incredibly warm. It is the target. Holden closes his eyes and cocks his head back. He’s in love, and that loving feeling is mixing with the urge to cum. And Holden feels nauseous because it almost feels too good.
“I’m going to cum, Holden! FUCK ME!”
He follows orders until it feels like his cock is about to burst. He thrusts, slows down momentarily. And thrusts harder than ever.
Jeremy reaches back and spreads his cheeks. His dick is head banging and spraying cum everywhere. Nothing is safe on the bed. Even the headboard gets sprayed.
Holden pulls out, peels off the condom (trying not to notice he small fragment of shit on the tip) and releases all over Jeremy’s back. Some cum hits Jeremy’s hair, his earlobe. But it doesn’t matter now. They have all the time in the world to clean up.
Holden hugs Jeremy from behind, rubbing his dick on his ass cheeks.
“It’s time for a shower,” he says, exhausted.
“It’s time for a nap,” Jeremy replies.
I apologize if there are any inconsistencies with past tenses and present tenses. I had to publish this thing quickly, and I didn’t have time for revisions. Plus, I basically do revisions while I write the first draft, anyway. I know that’s a horrid habit, but I can’t kick it.