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My Best Friend is Gay

by Victor Thomas

Chapter 13

I spotted Cody's mom in the park after school on Friday. She was alone and it was the perfect opportunity to approach her. I remembered our few times together and the bulge in my shorts grew.

I was seriously tempted to approach, flirt, and put the moves on her. I needed sex, but I was meeting Rebecca tomorrow after the game. There was something about her. Even as I thought of her, my heart beat faster and a feeling I could only describe as happiness mixed with anxiety coursed through me. Instant gratification or the girl of my dreams?

I turned away. I almost thought I could hear a slight whimper coming from my bulged pants. My dick needed some. It would have to wait.

I sought out the same bench where I had read before and opened ' The Last of the Wine. '

I hope I didn't just make a huge mistake. No. You didn't. Like Spencer said, you need to stop thinking with your dick. Rebecca is special. She's worth the sacrifice.

I picked up where I'd left off with the story. It was not at all the kind of thing I usually read. To be honest, my reading was mostly limited to sports magazines, a few sports biographies and other action type books such as Clive Cussler, Tom Clancy and the like. The thing is, I liked this book. The main character, Alexias was a lot like me. He was an athlete. There was some gay stuff in the book. Apparently, in Ancient Greece guys my age had older male trainers/lovers. Normally, I would not have been into reading about that, but I had just found out my best friend was gay and the book helped me understand him a little better.

What I didn't get is why Rebecca liked books like this so much. I could see where it would appeal to history buffs, gay guys, and even guys like me into masculine pursuits, but a girl. I didn't get it. At least her and I would have something to talk about.

I read in the park until the light began to fail, and then headed home. After I finished my homework, I read some more, but was unable to finish before I fell asleep.

I awakened late the next morning. I was a little concerned with my upcoming… not date… rendezvous with Rebecca. What if I screwed this up? I just knew I was going to do something stupid.

I was glad I had been unable to finish ' The Last of the Wine' the night before because reading helped me keep my mind occupied. I absolutely had to finish it before I departed for the game. The thing is, I was really into the book, too. I would not have to pretend when I met up with Rebecca. I planned to loan it to Spencer. I knew he would love it.

I finished just before lunch. Mom made grilled chicken, mashed potatoes, and cream gravy, one of my favorites. I fueled up for the game. Eating a lot might not sound like a good idea, but I didn't stuff myself and I was accustomed to eating quite a bit before a game.

My entire family was coming. Mom and dad were coming because I was playing, hopefully. Mary was no doubt going to the game to hang out with boys. I wasn't sure why Valerie was going, unless her girlfriend was going to be there.

Rebecca and I had not set an exact time, but we were meeting in the park after the game. I didn't know if she was attending the game or not, but I fantasized she would be up in the stands watching me do my stuff on the field. Perhaps it was better I didn't know if she was coming or not. She made me nervous and I sure didn't want to trip over my own feet again.

There was both excitement and nervous tension in the locker room as we stripped and put on our uniforms. We were playing the Oswego Indians, which wasn't one of the toughest teams around, at least they weren't last year, but they weren't easy to beat either.

My shoulder pads made me feel bigger as we walked out to the field. The pads made even a smaller guy look large. They also made heavier guys look more athletic, but I didn't need help in that department. I scanned the stands when we arrived, but I couldn't even spot my parents in the crowd so I probably had zero chance of finding Rebecca.

Coach Barrett put me in right away. I lined up against an Indian who looked somewhat like a giant, but a flabby giant. He had mass, but I had muscle. When we collided, I had trouble holding back his bulk, but he didn't have the strength to stop me. I slipped past. By then, the Indian quarterback had passed the ball, but I'd done my job.

It wasn't an exciting game. Shawn scored a touchdown soon after we gained possession of the ball. It was a sign of things to come. The Indians couldn't score to save their lives and by the end of the first half we had scored three touchdowns.

The coach put in some of the lesser players for the second half. He took Shawn out and put in Steve, but Steve proved to be as talented as his older brother and soon we were ahead 28-0.

My chance to do my thing came late in the game. By that time, we were ahead 35-0, so there was absolutely no chance of becoming a hero by scoring an unlikely touchdown in the final seconds of the game. I did penetrate the Indian line and get into the clear. The Indians took out the intended receiver, but Steve spotted me and passed the ball. I caught it and raced down the field. The Indians were on my heels, but I made it to the thirty, the twenty, the ten, and then planted my face in the turf less than five yards from the goal line. I wasn't quite sure what had happened, but I feared I had tripped over my own feet. The Indians were laughing at me and some of my teammates were trying hard not to laugh.

"Did I…" I asked Spencer.

"Yeah, you tripped over nothing."

"Noooo! How humiliating."

"Gaining over thirty yards and putting us within ten of the goal line is not humiliating," he said.

"Tripping over you own feet is," I said.

"You see the glass as half empty," he said. "I see it as half full."

"Yeah, but you didn't just make yourself look like a clumsy idiot," I said.

"Think of it this way," he said. "In a hundred years, no one will remember it."

"That makes me feel so much better."

"Glad to help," he said.

We joined the huddle.

"You should take up ballet, Bronson," said Kevin.

"Shut it, Braxton. That was an amazing run up until the end. If this was a close game, that gain would be critical. Good job, Philip," Steve said.


Steve scored two plays later by carrying the ball over the goal line as I should have. The game ended without our opponents scoring.

My parents found and congratulated me. Why they congratulated me for falling on my face I didn't know, but I guess that's what parents do. Like Spencer, they focused on the yardage not my humiliating face plant.

"Watching you made me nervous."

I turned at the sound of Rebecca's voice. I was both elated and horrified that she had witnessed my performance on the field.

"That was not my most spectacular performance," I said. "I usually try not to trip over my own feet, but I seem to have a habit of it."

"I don't see how you made it past those huge players or how you run wearing those pads," she said. "I'll wait for you over by my car and then we can talk about Mary Renault."

I grinned and my heart beat faster. This was actually going to happen.

I jogged to the locker room. I didn't even mind the guys razzing me about my clumsiness. My thoughts were on Rebecca. I showered and dressed quickly. Spencer gave me an encouraging nod and then I headed out to meet Rebecca, right after I checked myself out in the mirror. What was I thinking wearing my blue plaid button down shirt? I should have worn the green or asked Spencer for advice. What was the point of having a gay friend if one couldn't ask him for fashion advice?

I headed across the parking lot, carrying my well-worn copy of 'The Last of the Wine.'

Rebecca smiled at me as I neared. My heart raced and I feared for a moment that I was going to throw up. Why did she make me so nervous?

"You brought your book," she said.

"Yeah," I said. "I just finished it this morning… again, I mean. Sometimes I like to keep a copy with me."

"Like Alexander carrying his copy of 'The Iliad,'" she said.

"Yeah, like that."

"Can we walk and talk?" she asked.

"That will be great," I said.

"I would have never taken you for a fan of Mary Renault," she said.

"I'll be honest, I've only truly come to love her books recently," I told her.

"I figured you for the type who only reads sports magazines."

Oww. Direct hit.

"Well, I might read a few of those too," I admitted.

She laughed. I loved the sound of her laugh.

"What attracts you to 'The Last of the Wine' most?"

"Alexias," I said. "He's like me. Well, I'm no hero like him, but we're a lot alike."

She nodded.

"I guess it's difficult for you."

I didn't understand what she meant. Perhaps she was talking about keeping up my rep.

"Um, not really," I said. "I'm pretty comfortable with who I am. Don't believe all the stories you hear about me. I'm not the big player that most think I am."

"So, the stories about your exploits with girls is a cover?" she asked.

"Yeah… you could say that," I said.

I was still confused, but the less Rebecca believed my reputation with girls, the better. I had been with plenty of girls as well as two older women, but the rumors and stories about me were exaggerated. I usually encouraged that because it made me look like an even bigger stud than I am, but I wanted to downplay being a player with Rebecca.

"I love Alexias," she said. "I find him very noble, but also heroic."

"I admire his strength and athletic ability," I said. "I wouldn't mind looking like him either."

"How do you picture him?"

"Extremely handsome, even beautiful, muscular and perfectly proportioned and defined," I said. "I think of him as a young man with a perfect body. I wish I looked more like him."

"You're very handsome, Philip," she said.

"Thank you," I said. "I mean… I'm not all that handsome…"

"You are," she said. "It's no wonder so many girls swoon over you, the poor things."

"I think you're beautiful," I said with complete honesty.

"That's very sweet of you," she said. "So, do you read other books with gay characters?"

Sweet? That's it? Was she completely immune to my charm?

"Uh… not really."

"I suppose they are hard to find," she said.

"Yeah. Sure."

"I'm sorry I was rude to you before," she said. "I'd heard a lot about you and thought you were hitting on me."

"Um… it's okay."

I was getting increasingly confused. It was so much easier when I was just trying to get into a girl's pants.

"You know, you don't have to pretend to be a player," she said. "You don't have to hide. A lot of boys are out at school. Look at Shawn and Steve."

I was profoundly perplexed now, but then I slowly began to understand.

"Wait. No. I'm not…"

"You don't have to be frightened," she said. "I won't tell anyone."

"I'm not gay!" I said.

"Oh. I'm sorry. You're bi?"

"What?" I said. "No. I like girls, only girls."

She stopped and peered at me, as if trying to figure out if I was telling the truth or not.

"So, you and Spencer aren't…"

"What? No! Why would you think that? I'm not gay. He is, but…" My eyes widened and my mouth dropped open. "Oh my god! You can't tell anyone that! Please. No one is supposed to know. I promised him I wouldn't tell. I am the worst friend ever!"

I actually thought I was going to start crying for a moment. That's just what I needed, to cry in front of Rebecca.

"Philip, I won't tell anyone," she said.

"I am a complete screw up," I said. "I wanted to impress you, but instead I keep falling on my face. I made you think I'm gay, and I tell you the one secret I'm not supposed to tell anyone."

She smiled at me as she might a small child.

"Listen," I said. "I only began reading Mary Renault books to impress you. I did read ' Fire From Heaven ' and I just finished ' The Last of the Wine' this morning. Ask me anything you want. I read them and I do like them, but I only began reading them a few days ago after I found out you like them. I really like you. I don't feel abut you the way I do other girls. I am a player, Rebecca. I hook up with as many girls as I can, but that's not what I want with you. Well, I do want you, but I want to just be with you. I want to hold hands and go on dates and…"

"Philip, breathe."

I stopped and looked at her with a wild panic in my eyes.

"I am such a loser," I said, and this time tears did come to my eyes.

She smiled, and this time it was a smile of warmth and kindness.

"You're not a loser, Philip," she said, "and you're not the creep I once thought."

"I am a player," I admitted "I've never taken advantage of a girl and never promised anything more than a good time, but… I am a player and I'm obviously not good enough for you."

"I think whether or not you're good enough for me should be my decision to make," she said.

"Okay," I said. "Let me have it. Let's just get it over with and I can crawl back into my hole."

She laughed.

"Fine, laugh at my pain."

"You're certainly dramatic enough to be gay," she said.

I frowned and looked down at the ground, but she grasped my chin and gazed into my eyes.

"Now, we can truly begin. I'm Rebecca, but those close to me call me Becca."

"Um… I'm Philip," I said.

This girl was so confusing.

She took my hand and pulled me along. We began walking again.

"You are full of surprises, Philip."

"I'm mostly full of clumsiness," I said. "I'm also good at humiliating myself and blurting out secrets."

"I'm glad."

"You are?" I said. "So, all I had to do to get your attention was be a big fool?"

"What you needed to do is be honest and be the real you," she said.

"You're seeing the real me now for sure," I said. "I'm not Alexias."

"I don't know," she said. "You look much as I picture him, and I like how you stand by your friends. Have you always known about Spencer?"

"No," I admitted. "That's a recent revelation. It was a huge shock. I would probably have screwed everything up, but Steve took me aside and had a talk with me. Steve, now there's a good guy. He explained what it was like for Spencer and told me the danger he might be in. When I thought that he might kill himself it scared me so bad all I could think about was finding him. I think we're better friends now than we were before."

"There is much more to you than I thought."

"Spencer is the only real friend I have," I said. "My teammates are great, but we're not truly friends, not like Spencer and me. I'm just sorry that I didn't catch on to the fact he was gay. If I had done that years ago, he wouldn't have suffered as much."

"How could you have known?" she asked.

"I don't know, but I feel like I should have," I said.

"You're a good friend, Philip."

"I recommended Mary Renault's books to him," I said. "I didn't realize they had so much gay content."

"That's just part of the story," she said.

"It must have been something to live back then and fight real battles," I said. "Reading this last book makes me want to compete in the games and put on armor and fight for Athens."

"You know they competed nude," she said.

Spencer would probably enjoy that, I thought.

"That would sure make football different, especially in cold weather," I laughed.

Becca and I reached the park, sat on a bench and talked about 'Fire From Heaven' and 'The Last of the Wine' since those were the only two Mary Renault books I had actually read so far. I did intend to read more because I had grown to enjoy them.

"You know, if this was Ancient Greece, we couldn't speak like this. I would be kept hidden away and at most you'd only get a glimpse of me," she said.

"That's one reason to be happy we live now," I said. "That and electricity, TV, football…"

"I love to read about it, but I don't think I would want to live there," she said.

"It's nice to fantasize about it," I said.

"Have you, Philip?" she asked.

"Well… I have fantasized about strapping on armor and fighting with a sword while wearing one of those super cool helmets," I admitted. "Actually, doing it would be terrifying, especially when someone came at me with a sword. I'd probably trip over my own feet and get killed. It's probably best I stick with football."

"That's dangerous enough," she said.

"It's not dangerous," I said. "Almost no one ever dies while playing and about the worst that can happen are broken bones. Sure, that's not fun, but it's not like being skewered with a spear."

"I guess I don't understand the male love for violence," she said.

"You like to read about it," I grinned mischievously.

"I'm guilty I suppose, but there is much more in Renault's books than that," she said. "I love the beauty of that time and of Greece. I know I'm idealizing it all, but it is fiction."

"I'm sure I have an idealized view of warfare," I said. "To be honest, I hope to stay as far away from a real battlefield as possible. The football field is as real as I want to get."

"I'm so glad you aren't one of those overly macho types."

"I'm not sure how to take that," I said.

"It's a compliment," she said. "You're masculine, but without being ridiculous about it. You're athletic, but you're also sitting here talking to me about books."

"I'll be honest, I don't know much about books."

"Yes, but you are open to reading them, even if it's only to impress a girl who gives you the cold shoulder," she said. "I bet I convince you to read other books."

I sighed.

"I have a feeling you can convince me to do about anything," I said. "I've never felt this way about anyone before. If I had any sense at all, I'd run away."

"It's not to late to escape," she said, gazing at me and drawing closer.

"It's far too late for me."

I closed the distance and we kissed. I do not say I kissed her because I'm uncertain who kissed whom. Before, I had made all the moves with the girls, but now even that had changed.

We pulled apart and smiled at each. I felt dopey, goofy, and giddy. What had this girl done to me?

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