There aren’t many words I can think of to describe cuddling with Dizzy that night. I would’ve thought it would be uncomfortable, but there was just something special about getting to hold him. I mean this is the boy I’ve been hearing about since I got here. This is the boy that climbed through a window on my first day! Yet here he is, in my bed, in my arms.
“Good morning.” I was able to force out as my phone alarm began to ring.
“Just a few more minutes.” He grumbled. I went to pull away but as he lightly grabbed my arm I moved in closer. “I could lay in your arms all day.”
“Considering we have school, I don’t think you can.” I teased as a smile began on my face.
“At least it’ll be with you.” He continued to flirt.
“I think you’re just tired.” I pressured as he broke free and turned towards me.
“I think I’m just falling for you.” He corrected. He went to lean in for a kiss but stopped as I pulled back.
“I can’t.” I exhaled before he could get the wrong idea. “I-I still have to figure out this whole thing. It wouldn’t be right.”
“Do you honestly think you’ll pick Ky?” He forced out as our eyes connected.
“I don’t know,” I confessed. “but I can’t go all this way with him and not get to know him better. Then I’d have just led him on.”
“Are you that worried about me?” Dizzy questioned with a serious look on his face.
“Somehow I think you’ll be fine.” I replied as a smile grew on my face.
“That means you’re going to pick me.” He happily replied.
“I didn’t say,”
“You didn’t have to.” He shrugged as he caught my smile. “Well I can’t wait to date you Arthur Price. I have so many different things I want to do with you.” I shot him a skeptical look as I heard those words. “Not in bed!” He quickly clarified with a blush. “Just like, around the city. I want to show you this world.”
“Well if I pick you, I want all of that to start with your art.” I explained, starting to climb out of bed.
“When you pick me.” He corrected, getting out of bed himself. He went to say something else but as he saw the hat on my dresser froze. “Artie!” He exclaimed, now fully awake. “Is that a cowboy hat?! You actually own one?!”
“Well yeah, like I said I worked on a farm.” I answered, walking over and picking it up before he could grab it.
“But I didn’t know people actually wore them!” He began to laugh as I showed it to him.
“Of course, it keeps the sun out of your face.” I shrugged, not understanding what all the excitement was about.
“Wait!” He suddenly shouted as his mind jumped to another topic. “Did you have spurs too?”
“Well I had them. I think you’re struggling to grasp the whole, worked on a farm concept.” I couldn’t help but tease.
“That’s crazy!” He excitedly shouted, taking a seat on the bed. “Why would you even need them though? It seems so, cruel.”
“It’s only as cruel as you make it.”I shook my head. “It was for both our protection. My leg cues on a horse weren’t too good, so my spurs helped to emphasize them. It’s not like I was stabbing the horse with them either, just a little prick to keep them in line.” I tried to explain as a million stories from home flooded to my brain.
“Like this one time!” I began but caught myself. “Sorry, I’m sure you don’t want to hear about it.”
“Are you kidding?!” Dizzy smiled as our eyes met. “I’ve been waiting to hear your stories since you got here!”
“Alright.” I exhaled, taking a seat next to him. “This one time we were herding some cattle, and one of the cows broke free and started charging us. I needed my spurs to help us dodge it.”
“Us?” Dizzy provoked.
“Me and my horse.” I answered, thinking back to the powerful grey steed I had left behind. “Well it wasn’t my horse, it was my friend’s dad, but I rode her the most.”
“What was its name?” Dizzy smiled.
“Her name was Scout.” I answered feeling the bittersweet moment starting to take shape. I think for the first time since I got here, I’m kind of missing Texas! I miss riding Scout through the open fields, and feeling the wind rushing past us. I miss watching the sun rise with my Mom when I woke up, and watching it set on my way home from the farm.
“I can’t imagine you working on a farm.” Dizzy shook his head. “What did you do?”
“Herding was actually rare because we were so young.” I began once more. “We took care of the chickens, cleaned the stables, tended to some of the crops or just whatever field maintenance needed to be done.”
“Sounds thrilling.” He joked, looking back at my hat. “So I thought the good guys we’re supposed to wear the lighter hats?” He asked, staring at the worn and dark grey hat.
“Maybe I’m not one of the good guys.” I teased, getting up and placing it back on the counter.
“Oh yeah?” He giggled, rising to his feet and walking up close behind me. “Well don’t worry, I’ll tame you.”
“Dizzy!” I yelped, quickly turning around to him.
“Little too much?” He began to laugh as I nodded my head. “Sorry, I just, I got lost in the moment is all.”
“You sure you’re not that big bad womanizer I heard about?” I asked with raised eyebrows.
“I have the skills to be,” He shrugged his shoulders. “but I’m not that guy. I swear.”
I nodded as I looked into his eyes. “You’re not going to try and fight with Ky when we get to school, right?”
“Not if you don’t want me too.” He exhaled. “But I want to know why he said that to you. I want to know if he’s really willing to stab me in the back here.”
“I don’t think he is.” I rejected, trying my hardest to comfort Dizzy. “I know I haven’t known Ky as long as you, but he doesn’t seem like that type of guy.”
“He’s not.” Dizzy agreed. “That’s why it sucks so much.”
“It’ll work out.” I reassured, taking a deep look into his eyes. “I promise.”
Once more Dizzy leaned in for a kiss, but this time I couldn’t pull myself away. Just like last night excitement and life rushed my body as our lips meant. Kissing Dizzy, it just makes me feel, alive.
“Thought you can’t kiss me again?” He immediately began as I pulled away.
“Well I, I shouldn’t’ve, you just, got, cute.” I sheepishly forced out.
“I didn’t get cute.” He rejected with a smile. “I got weak. I let you in on my worries about Ky, I trusted you and you kissed me for it, and that Arthur is why I’m falling for you so hard.
“You really have to stop calling me Arthur.” I quickly changed the conversation, realizing how serious Dizzy was being.
“Why? I like that name.” He teased with a growing smile.
I rolled my eyes and started to gather a change of clothes from my drawers before heading towards the door. “Just behave while I get ready.”
The rest of the morning was just as you’d imagine with Dizzy. Every little thing he saw he turned into a big conversation. He really did appreciate the little things about life. He wanted to hear about everything I was willing to share, no matter how small.
“Breakfast?” I asked, offering him a poptart.
“Happily.” He replied, taking it from my hand. Before he could say anything else his eyes darted to the note on the counter. “What’s that?” He asked. I went to cover it with my hand but he snatched it before I could.
“Have fun at school today. Harry Potter 4 is on the to do list tonight, so make sure to do your homework right when you get home! Lindsay will even be here to watch it with us! Be safe, and text me if you go out after school.
“He leaves you notes!” Dizzy exclaimed with a wide smile.
“Yes, and I happen to like them.” I warned, taking it from his hand.
“It’s cute.” Dizzy agreed. “It’s nice you two are so close.”
“I guess we are.” I proudly nodded.
“So when did he move from Texas?” Dizzy pressured, trying his hardest to force eye contact. “It was long before you right?”
“That’s a story for another day.” I shrugged. “Now come on, we’ll be late.”
“Fine.” He groaned, faking disappointment but I could tell he didn’t want to push. “But why’s he showing you Harry Potter? Does he want your only pop-culture knowledge to be from like 2004?”
“Because they were banned in our hometown,” I answered as confusion entered his face. “and they’re good movies.”
“They are good.” He nodded his head. “And so he’s from the same hometown as you.” Dizzy immediately began to tease. “There’s one piece to the puzzle.”
“Go ahead and collect as many pieces as you want.” I warned, looking over to him. “I don’t even have all of them.”
“Then we’ll find them together.” He smirked as we finally made our way to the front door. Yet as he pulled it open I froze. “Shit.” He sighed as a wall of fog sat outside. “I hate nasty days like these.”
“I uh, I,” I stuttered, as my brain tried to comprehend what it was seeing. “Is everything okay? Are we safe?”
Dizzy began to laugh as he turned towards me. “Everything is absolutely fine. Welcome to fog city.”
“This, this happens?” I asked, finally walking out of the door. As I looked around the now familiar neighborhood I had trouble spotting things. The trees from the park looked gigantic as you could barely see the tops poking out through the fog, while the city lights barely shined around me.
“Yup.” Dizzy proudly replied. “One of the downsides of living on the bay I guess.” As we reached the bottom of the stairs Dizzy stopped and took a closer look at me, realizing how off put I had grown at the change of scenery. “Don’t be scared, I’ve got you.” He smiled, offering me his arm.
“I’m not scared.” I lied, lightly grabbing onto him.
“There’s no shame in being scared.” He tried to comfort. “The unknown terrorizes all of us.”
“How so?” I baited, knowing a story was brewing in his head.
“Well back in ninety-four before we were born this city had a power outage so bad you could see the edge of the Milky Way.” He began in an excited voice. “People were so scared they called 911 thinking it was a nuclear attack, little did they know that’s just the sky. That’s what’s always out there.” He began, starting to grow amazed by his own words. “It’s been there long before we got here, and will still be here long after we’re gone. I’ve dreamed of seeing something like that ever since I heard that story.”
“It’s amazing.” I proudly nodded.
“You’ve seen it?” He excitedly asked, quickly turning to me.
“Yup.” I smiled. “My Mom took me out to the desert a few years ago and we got to see almost all of it. It’s one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen.”
“Well how does a man of God like yourself respond to something like that?” He led, eager to see what I would say.
“Well,” I began to think it over. “God is infinite and amazing, so why can’t His creation be?”
“Well played.” He nodded his head. “So you actually believe then?”
“I don’t know.” I confessed, thinking about the silver cross around my neck. “I’ve been going back and forth a lot lately, but I’m starting to think He’s out there. Something taking care of me, I can just feel it.”
“That’s really sweet.” He encouraged as a genuine smile began on his face.
“What about you?” I asked, realizing I had never spoken to any of them about religion.
“I honestly have no idea.” He shrugged. “I don’t want to say either way. I can easily see it being possible, I mean the odds of the big bang happening all by itself are so small, so why couldn’t a God have started it? Yet at the same time we’re so small and insignificant compared to the universe that it makes me doubt we’re put here with any purpose.” He began to think over.
“I guess what I’m trying to say is that no matter what it’s just, amazing.” He explained as his smile grew. “Whether there’s heaven awaiting us after we die, or this just happened by chance. It’s all just incredible to me. Life’s pretty amazing.”
“Yeah,” I exhaled as he pulled me a little closer. “I think so too.”
We took as long as we needed walking to school that morning. It didn’t matter to us that we might be late, we were just enjoying every second together. I know I’m saying Ky still has a chance, but I don’t even know if I believe that anymore. Dizzy made all the right moves at all the right times. I just need to know if I can trust him. That he’s in this for more than just sex.
When we finally walked into the school we picked up our pace as the homeroom bell began to ring.
“Nice of you two to join us.” Mrs. Mowry provoked as we walked into the room.
“Sorry,” Dizzy began as he worked over an excuse in his mind. “we didn’t expect the fog to roll in like that, you know how it slows down the busses and all.”
“Is that true Mr. Price?” Mrs. Mowry asked, looking over to me for confirmation.
“Yes Ma’am.” I supported. “Plus I had never seen fog like this before, so I may have slowed us down more. Sorry Ma’am.”
“I understand it can be pretty jarring at first.” She nodded and motioned for us to take our seats. “Thank you for your honesty.”
“Where were you two that you needed to take the busses?” Charlotte asked as Ky unhappily stared forward.
“We just went to grab breakfast.” Dizzy lied. “It was a last minute thing.”
“Whatever.” Ky grumbled from next to me.
I went to say something but Mrs. Mowry stood up and actually started homeroom before I could. The whole time Ky refused to look over to us. Instead he kept a steely eyed stare dead ahead. I never thought I’d be able to refer to Ky as scary, but there’s just no other way to describe the look on his face!
“Ky!” Dizzy called out as homeroom ended and Ky quickly made his way to the door. “Don’t do this man.”
“You’re one to talk.” He remarked, finally turning back towards us.
“Am I?” Dizzy asked as I saw irritation starting to spread on his face. “At least I didn’t spread lies about you.”
“Lies?” Ky repeated. “What do you mean lies?”
“You told Artie I’m some type of man whore. You said I bounce around from girl to girl.” Dizzy answered, unafraid to speak his mind.
“What the hell Artie?” Ky let out, looking over to me.
“What was I supposed to do?” I defended. “I don’t like to play games. Obviously I’m going to ask him about it.”
“You don’t like to play games?” Ky repeated in a sarcastic voice. “Alright Artie.” He rolled his eyes.
“Hey man.” Dizzy began in a strong voice before taking a step in front of me. “Don’t take it out on him.”
“Guys.” Charlotte tried to interrupt as she realized how many people were watching us. “Not the place.”
“So why’d you say it ?” Dizzy asked, too agitated to listen to Charlotte.
“Because it’s true.” Ky shrugged. “All I’ve heard you talk about since we got to High School is about what girl you fingered, or what girl you want to bang next. That’s you. Lie about it all you want, but it is.”
“You ever think I was just trying to impress you?” Dizzy began silencing the group. “You ever think I was too embarrassed to tell you I kept getting dumped. I’ve been in your shadow since I was a kid.” I gulped hard as Dizzy began to open up. “You’ve always been this amazing Surfer who gets good grades and flirts with cute boys. You don’t even take my art serious. You say its vandalism.”
“Come on Dizz.” Ky grunted, not believing a word of it.
“He’s not lying.” Charlotte suddenly began. “He started telling me about it a few months ago.” She confessed. “He’s been trying to find a way to tell you for a while now.”
“You knew?” I asked, glancing over to Charlotte.
“I told you Ky had it wrong,” She forced a smile. “I just wanted it to come from Dizzy, not me.”
“So after all of this you’re on his side?” Ky asked, turning towards her.
“I’m not on anyone’s side.” She defended. “Except maybe Artie’s, but that’s only because I don’t want you two hurting him.”
“Us hurting him?” Ky asked with another roll of his eyes.
“What’s your problem?” Dizzy asked, he went to take a step forward but before he could I grabbed his arm.
The second my hand wrapped around it Ky stared at me. “So I guess you’ve made your choice.”
“I guess I have.” I nodded my head, taking a step forward. “But I honest to God didn’t before this moment. You can ask Dizzy.”
“He’s been defending you all morning.” Dizzy nodded. “Said you’ve just been misunderstanding me the past few years, that you’re too good of a guy to talk shit.”
“Alright.” Ky dismissed, starting to walk away.
“I did.” I confirmed in the strongest voice I could manage. “You can be mad at Me, Dizzy, or even Charlotte if you want, but you did this yourself. You convinced yourself I was going to choose Dizzy and it became self-fulfilling prophecy.”
He froze for a second and went to turn around but kept walking before he could.
“I’m sorry.” Dizzy instantly began, turning towards me. “I’ve seen him get mad before, but I didn’t expect him to blow up.”
“It’s no one’s fault.” Charlotte comforted before either of us could blame ourselves. “Like you said Artie, Ky did this to himself.”
“Are you sure about that?” I asked, looking over to her.
“Positive.” She confidently nodded. “And Dizzy,” She warned beginning to stare at him. “if you play around with Artie, I’ll castrate you myself.”
“You’ve only known him a week and a half.” Dizzy played along in a fake nervous tone. “Isn’t that a bit extreme?”
“Nope.” She happily replied.
“Please don’t get my dick cut off.” He smirked, turning back to me.
“No promises.” I shrugged, walking past him and joining Charlotte as she began to walk.
“Really?!” He groaned, walking behind us. “What? Do I have to beat Charlotte for your attention too?”
“That’s not a battle you’ll win.” I rejected drawing a laugh from Charlotte.
As we walked into cooking I noticed Ky sitting on the opposite side of the room. I never meant for it to get like this. I didn’t even realize it could go so bad so quickly! It was like he just snapped. Did the idea that Dizzy and I went out for breakfast really hurt him that bad? It’s not like we didn’t have plans alone together. It’s not like we didn’t go surfing and have plans for dinner on Sunday. He had just as many chances as Dizzy. Dizzy just capitalized on the ones he was given, and made even more for himself!
The rest of the day was just like cooking. Ky stayed as far from us as possible. Even in classes where it was just him and me. He wanted nothing to do with any of us, and he was trying his hardest to make that known.
“So,” Charlotte began as she walked me home. “where were you and Dizzy actually this morning? And don’t say breakfast!”
“Promise not to tell anyone.” I began with a smirk.
“Swear!” She yelped, getting excited from the look on my face.
“I really need you to promise though.” I couldn’t help but tease.
“Oh my god Artie!” She groaned. “Don’t do this!”
“Don’t do what?” I giggled. “I just need this to stay a secret.”
“I swear on my life!” She insisted. “Just tell me already!”
“Well he, he broke into my house because he got into a fight with his Mom’s boyfriend.” I began in a serious voice.
“I hate when that happens.” She complained, looking into my eyes. “Not that it happens often.”
“And he was sleeping on my floor and I asked him about what Ky said.” I explained, capturing her full attention. “He just came forward with everything. He told me that girls only use him for sex and to shock their dads.”
“He told you all of that?” She asked in a surprised voice.
“Yeah,” I slowly nodded my head. “why?”
“It took me years to get him to open up like that.” She shook her head. “He’s really falling for you.”
“Well that’s not all.” I exhaled as she looked right back up at me. “I may have let him sleep in my bed after that.”
“Yes Artie!” She encouraged in a loud voice. “Did you guys bang? I need to know everything!”
“No!” I rejected as a blush engulfed my face. “We just, just, cuddled all night. We even had our first kiss!”
“Awww.” She whimpered, instantly changing gears. “That’s so sweet!”
“I really like him.” I confessed for the first time to anyone. “I thought I’d be nervous hugging another guy like that but he, he just makes it feel natural.”
“I’m so happy for you.” She cheered as we reached my house. “You need to keep me updated on everything, got it?”
“He’ll practically be dating both of us!” I teased as she began to laugh, yet as I thought it all over once more felt my smile fade. “Do you think Ky will be okay?” I suddenly asked.
“He’ll be fine.” She nodded her head. “Let him sulk and go through the motions. You hit the nail on the head. He was so scared that you’d choose Dizzy that he pushed you into his arms.”
“I just feel bad.” I began to sway my head.
“Don’t.” Charlotte rejected. “He was being a total dick to you today. If he deserved you he wouldn’t’ve snapped like that.”
“You’re the best.” I finally began to smile again.
“I know.” She accepted as she pulled me in for a hug. “Text me?”
“Already sent.” I teased with our normal response to one another.
We exchanged smiles one more time before I climbed the steps and walked into my house. As I approached the couch I noticed Lindsay and Adam both fast asleep. I couldn’t help but giggle to myself as I took a closer look. Lindsay’s head was lying on his chest as his arm stretched around her. I guess today’s just the day for friends to become lovers. As bad as I feel for Ky, well, my excitement for Dizzy is stronger than anything I’ve ever felt in my life. I’m ready for this adventure. I’m going to grab on with both hands, just like my Mom taught me to.