Jump to content
  • Join For Free and Get Notified of New Chapters!

    Are you enjoying a great story and want to get an alert or email when a new chapter is posted? Join now for free and follow your favorite stories and authors!  You can even choose to get daily or weekly digest emails instead of getting flooded with an email for each story you follow. 

     

    Jwolf
  • Author
  • 12,012 Words
  • 5,115 Views
  • 23 Comments

The English Year - 13. Homecoming Part 1: That Kind of Thing

“What’s the difference between going out and hanging out?” “Going out includes dinner.”

The next afternoon, after showering, eating a carb-loaded lunch, and packing a study bag, I ventured onto campus to find my friend Amanda.

I had texted her shortly after I’d woken up to tell her that I was alive and well, and that I’d made it home safely. She told me she’d be studying in the commons, and so after dodging my brothers, whom I still hadn’t seen since they’d thrown me into a pool of water, I walked onto campus to find her.

“You’re dry,” she smiled as I sat at the table across from her. The commons wasn’t the best place to study if one wasn’t looking for a myriad of distractions.

“I am,” I smiled back. “And not a minute too soon.”

“Are you going to study?” she asked, watching me put my back pack down with no indication of opening it. I leaned back into my chair and looked back at her.

“Actually, I wanted to talk to you,” I said. “I might have done something stupid last night.”

She perched her eyebrow up, and gave me a classic Mandy stare down.

“What kind of stupid?”

“You wouldn’t be proud of me stupid,” I said, delaying the inevitable. I knew that Amanda would judge me once I told her what I’d done, but I knew I needed to tell her. I needed her help, and therefore I had to rip the band aid off and tell her.

“Okay,” she said, sitting up and leaning on her elbow. If her neck was any longer, she would have been craned clear across the table. “Now you have to tell me. What did you do?”

“I might have called Mike last night,” I confessed.

“Mike the cadet?” I could see the judgment scribbled all over her face.

“No, Mike the milkman. We’re good friends, you know.”

“What the hell were you thinking?”

“It was a moment of weakness. I was so proud of myself for leaving Pete behind, and finally being clear enough to walk away, and I wanted to celebrate the moment with someone.”

“So you called the cadet? Talk about back tracking.”

“It’s not that big of a deal, and I really only called him for a booty call. A guy’s gotta eat,” I said. Amanda winced.

“Did he come over?”

“Well, no,” I replied. “It was after two. He was in barracks. But we talked for a little bit.”

“Doesn’t he split a room with like nine guys?”

“Three. And yes. But they have a bathroom, so he went in there to talk,” I answered.

“Gotcha. And what did you and Mike discuss?”

“This and that,” I said vaguely. Amanda raised an eyebrow. I swallowed hard and told her the details of my conversation with the cadet.

“Well, I invited him to hang out with me tonight, and he said he couldn’t. And then he asked me what I was doing next weekend and I said it was Homecoming. He asked me if I had a date, and I said probably not, and he said he would totally come down for Homecoming to hang out with me…”

“No…” Amanda’s face was priceless. It was like she had been pushed out of the way of a speeding train, right at the last second. Her eyes were wide, her mouth was open, and she couldn’t take her gaze off of me. “He didn’t.”

“He did. He practically asked if he could be my date to Homecoming,” I said. “I told him no!” I added quickly, watching the blood pull away from Amanda’s face. “I totally told him no.”

“Good.”

“But I told him I’d sneak him into the late night after parties,” I added, biting my bottom lip again and squinting my eyes at her. Last night, while talking to Mike, it seemed like the perfect compromise. No, he couldn’t be my date. As out and open as I was on campus, there was no way I was bringing a guy to a formal function. The rush implications would have been unbearable, and the guys would have had a fit. But there was nothing stopping me from loaning Mike some plain clothes and bringing him with me to the country, especially if it painted Pete’s face green in the process.

“So what exactly is the plan here?” Amanda asked.

“Well, this is where I need you,” I said. “Be my date to Homecoming. You’re only on the hook for cocktails on Friday and dinner on Saturday. Free catered meal… unlimited booze…”

“I plan on getting laid this weekend,” Amanda said.

“Which you’ll have plenty of time to do,” I replied. “After dinner and cocktails and Mike gets there.”

“You need a beard?”

“Just for dinner and cocktails,” I said. I gave Amanda my patented puppy-dog face, and as always, she couldn’t refuse it.

“Fine,” she said. “But I want Belvedere.”

“Skyy,” I countered.

“Belvedere or bust.”

“Oh, whatever. Belvedere isn’t better than Skyy, it’s just colder,” I said, managing to get a chuckle out of my Homecoming date.

“Where does this leave you and Pete?”

“What do you mean?” I played dumb.

“Are you doing this to make him jealous?”

“Absolutely not,” I replied quickly. Too quickly, I realized. It was a big fat lie, and we both knew it. “I’m not. I just… I can’t base every decision I make on how it’ll affect Pete and me. Especially because there is no Pete and me.”

“But you want there to be,” Amanda analyzed.

“What I want doesn’t necessarily matter anymore.” I looked her in the eye and folded my arms. I had decided last night that I wasn’t going to be Pete’s hollerback boy anymore. If I’m being completely honest, the thought of not pursuing him anymore made me lonely, and that’s probably why I picked up the phone and called Mike to begin with.

“You two exhaust me,” she said.

There was another reason I had asked Amanda to be my date to Homecoming the following weekend, and I would never tell her what it was. Sure, I needed a beard for the official portion of the evening before Mike the Cadet got there, but I could have asked anyone. The truth is, I wanted Pete to see me moved on. I didn’t necessarily want to make him jealous, but I needed him to observe that I was over our back and forth, whatever it was. Pete had let it slip that he was, in fact, going to take Amanda’s roommate Tamia as his Homecoming date. I figured that with Amanda coming to Chi Beta for our formal and Steph Doleman following Lee to Chi Beta as well, it was a surefire thing that Pete and Tamia would follow suit.

Birds of a feather, I’d reasoned, would flock together. And my plan to have Pete see me moving on with Mike could go off without a hitch. Maybe seeing Mike and me together would light a fire under his ass, or maybe it wouldn’t. Either way, I’d score on Homecoming.

I sat across from Amanda doing work for the rest of the day. We distracted ourselves fairly easily with the string passersby, and although I didn’t accomplish much actual schoolwork, I did finish the first draft of my column for the next issue of The Founder.

While Amanda put her headphones in and buckled down on Art History, I pondered the age old question of jealousy. It had been a tool used by men and women for years and years, and in relationships, it was definitely one of the most powerful. Jealousy allowed someone’s true feelings to come out, even if they weren’t ready for them to.

And although I was over Pete in my own way, I couldn’t resist the chance to make him jealous. I wasn’t deluding myself into thinking that he’d see me with Mike, get jealous, and immediately confess his love for me. But seeing another guy into me might have sparked something in him. It might have made him reassess his own feelings. And for that, my date with Mike would be worth it.

I was convinced that week that the professors at Old Dominion took pleasure in their student’s pain. I had just come off an exam/paper combo the week before, and now I was staring smack in the face of a double/double: two papers and two midterms… all within hours of Homecoming.

To make matters worse, that week was the week The Fancy Ball committee had decided to take applications for this year’s squad. As a former subcommittee chair, my application was more of a formality than anything else. I filled out my form on Tuesday afternoon, just before chorus, and tracked Alexandria down to give it to her.

“Hey,” she said with a smile. “How’s my favorite committee chair?”

“Still pissed that you haven’t found a distributions manager for the paper,” I joked, sitting across from her in the Founder cubicle, also known as her office.

“I’m working on it,” she said. “We’re getting back on our feet, which is good. And the other writers are all back on board, so it’s going to be a good year. What’s this?”

“My Fancy Ball Committee application,” I said, handing her the paper I’d spent approximately four minutes filling out.

“You didn’t even need to do this,” she said, scanning it over. “You want to lead decorations again this year, right?”

“Yeah, but this year I want big gym instead of small gym,” I said.

“I think Reagan Kerber has big gym,” Alex replied. “But I’ll see what I can do. Why don’t you sit in on interviews with us next week?”

“Really?” I asked, trying not to sound too excited. Girls like Alexandra responded to people who played it cool, not people who played it desperate. But interviews for Fancy Ball were an officer exclusive, and I felt honored to be asked to join.

“Yeah. You’d be perfect,” she said. “And you can help me assess who I need to rush for Kappa.”

It wasn’t a secret at all that the Kappas and KDs used their positions on The Fancy Ball committee to woo girls to their houses. Getting on the committee was the first sign that a girl was Kappa or KD material. It was just the way that it was. And by then, five weeks into the school year, there were already feelers out on the girls that the two big powerhouses would be fighting for.

“I’ll do it, yeah,” I said breezily. “If you find a distributions manager.”

“I’m working on it!” she said. We made plans to make plans, and I left Alex alone to go to chorus.

Later that evening, we had the pre-Homecoming chapter meeting. Dom got up in front of the brotherhood and reminded everyone that all events that weekend were mandatory. Jacket and tie were required for dinner, shirt and tie were required for cocktails, dates were highly encouraged. Fines would be imposed on any brother that skipped out on any event without a valid excuse.

“What if we skip out because we’re rushing freshmen at a different event?” I couldn’t stop myself from asking.

“I think the fact that the social chair is trying to ditch is a little worrisome,” one of the seniors said. I almost retorted that I could smell his cocaine residue from across the room, but I refrained.

“I hope you have cash to pay the fine,” Dom replied to me decisively.

Once he was done, I stood up and went over everything else that needed to be discussed. I assigned sober officers, sober drivers, and brothers on duty. I passed around the sign-up sheet for security and bar duties.

“It’s a double Late Night, so plan accordingly guys,” I reminded everyone as they signed up for different time slots. “Set up is all hands on deck, not just sophomores. So if you aren’t in class, please make yourself available to set up. If I have to track anyone down or if anyone is too drunk, or otherwise, to do their job, I will be imposing fines.”

Several brothers started talking at the same time. I raised a hand and waited until the commotion settled down.

“What? If the EC gets to fine people for not wearing at tie or being at dinner, I think I should get to fine people for not setting up or manning the bar during one of our biggest parties of the year.”

“That’s a little different, Corbin,” Dom said from his end of the table.

“Really? How?” I challenged.

“I’m with Corbin on this one,” Austin said. “You assholes be where you need to be when you say you’ll be there.”

There was another round of commotion before Dom stopped everyone and settled them all down. My work there as the agent of chaos was done, and I took my seat.

Hutch was next to go over the rush list and the guys we’d be sending invitations to. The sophomores worked to write down names and look up room numbers as he read off the master list.

By the time he was done, there were 48 guys that would receive invitations to Homecoming. Those guys comprised our short list of rushees, and extending a Homecoming invite was our way of telling them they were still in the running. Some frats, as well as Chi Beta in the past, gave out blanket invitations. Come one, come all. But we’d stopped that practice a few years back in the hopes of maintaining exclusivity like some of the bigger houses.

Without an invitation, the only way to get into a Homecoming party was with the help of a girl who knew the brothers really well. Certain girls, depending on their popularity and hotness, could finagle an invitation for their dates to certain houses. My freshman year, after a month of hard partying and enemy making, I’d smartly asked a senior girl whose popularity amongst some of the more attainable houses allowed me entrance. It was how I beat the system after cutting my chances pretty low.

“What’s the story on Lee?” Dom asked Hutch after the meeting was adjourned. Austin, Roberto, Brian, and I had stayed behind to help Hutch address envelopes to our rushees.

“What do you mean?” Hutch asked. I didn’t look up from the envelope I was writing on.

“I heard that if he’s out, we lose Brandon and David. Is that true?” he directed his question towards Hutch, but I couldn’t help inching my eyes upward and seeing Hutch’s response out of my peripheral.

“Yeah, I might have heard that,” Hutch shot back. “But we’re going to get him, so don’t worry about it.”

“We’d better hope,” Dom said, forebodingly.

He left the room, leaving only the guys in my class and Newby, one of the sophomores on the social and rush committees, behind.

“We’d better hope,” Roberto mocked, faking Dom’s Russian infused New York accent. Brian, Dom’s little, shot him a look. “Why is that guy so serious?”

“Why so serious?” I snapped back in my best Heath Ledger impersonation.

“He’s just worried,” Hutch defended. “We can’t have a bad year.”

I know he didn’t mean it to, but Hutch’s gaze fell on me. I was the direct cause of Dom’s anxiety and we all knew it. From my loosely wired cannon to how I’d alienated our golden boy rushee. I knew that the concern over Lee was my problem, and Hutch was taking the brunt of it for me.

“Don’t worry, sir,” I said, sitting back and giving up any more envelopes. “I’ll be on my best behavior this weekend.”

“We’d better hope,” Newby chimed in, getting a laugh from Austin and others.

I went upstairs a few minutes later to clear my head. It had been a rollercoaster weekend for me emotionally, and I needed some time to be alone. I studied in my room that night, drifting back and forth between actual school work and analyzing my own thoughts and decisions.

I had been right to leave the Brit at the party on Friday. I had been right in my decision to walk away from him, and to not look back. What I hadn’t been right about was leaving him and calling Mike the Cadet.

I knew that Pete had his anxieties about me and other guys, and there I was fueling those fears. But at the end of the day, Pete hadn’t stepped up to the plate, so could he really be upset at me for inviting Mike over that weekend?

And then part of me thought that if I’d sat Pete down and really talked it out with him, maybe we would have been at a different place. But the bottom line was, I was dealing with an adult who could read people as well as I could, and he knew I liked him. He knew it, and he’d done nothing about it. I didn’t feel the need to spell it out in the sand for him. Maybe it was my pride. Maybe it was my fear that if I told him, he’d reject me and that would make it definite. Whatever it was, I wasn’t going to spell it out. Instead, I was going to take a cadet out.

The rest of the week flew by, mostly because I was busier than a whore during fleet week. I managed to squeak through my chemistry midterm more or less unscathed, and I aced my English test, using what I’d read in Sister Carrie for every response question. It was a strategy I’d been employing since high school… learn one book and learn it well… coast for the rest of the term.

I only saw Pete a couple of times that week—once at chorus where he asked me what he was expected to get his date for Homecoming.

“Just liquor,” I told him.

“No flowers or anything?”

“This isn’t the eleventh grade,” I replied. “Just buy the two of you a bottle of vodka, or Pimm’s, or something, and call it a day. Any idea where you and Tamia are going?”

“There’s your guys’ cocktail party. And I got invited to dinner at Phi Psi and cocktail parties at a couple of other places,” he said. “Fiji, Pi Phi. Sigma Chi. I think Tamia might have helped at Sigma Chi.”

“I’m sure she did,” I countered, sitting down and getting ready for chorus to start. I felt a pang of jealousy course through me that she got to take him out and I didn’t. I knew it was irrational, bordering on stupid, but I couldn’t help it.

I finally called Mike on Wednesday to shore up our plans for the weekend.

“Is there any way for you to spend the night Friday?” I asked, not pleased that he’d have to be back in Lexington and in bed in the barracks before two.

“I couldn’t get permission to sleep off,” he said. “Not even from my wrestling coach.”

“Okay, well… um… why don’t you plan on getting here around nine on Friday and we’ll go from there,” I said, trying not to sound disappointed. I’m not sure why I was surprised; it was the same every time with Mike. He could only ever be half there, even when he was all there.

“Okay,” he replied. “What should I wear?”

“You have to leave campus in uniform right?” I asked.

“Yeah, but I can bring clothes. As long as no one takes pictures or anything,” he said. It was the fastest way to get in trouble as a cadet: get caught in street clothes.

“You can borrow anything from me,” I told him. I had more confidence that my clothes would blend in at OD better than his. “As long as you keep it here.”

“You just wanna watch me change,” he said. I could tell he was smirking.

“Nothing I haven’t seen before.”

“And jacked off to,” he replied. I blushed.

“I’ll see you tomorrow,” I said. I almost called him killer, but I stopped myself. For some reason, I thought it was crossing a line calling someone that wasn’t Pete killer.

“I’ll see you tomorrow,” Mike said. “I’ll make sure to do extra sit ups tonight, just for you man.”

I hung up. In a way, Mike wasn’t enough to satisfy what I was really craving: a relationship with someone that could be all there. But he was perfect for filling the void that a Brit had created, and I spent the rest of the night studying and thinking about Mike. Not once did I slip back into thinking about Pete.

That all changed the next morning when Pete called me after my English class to see if I wanted to have lunch. I made the mistake of thinking about it for just a split second once I felt my phone vibrate. Once I let myself think, I was done. I answered and told him I’d meet him at the D-hall at 11:45.

“He lives!” he called, waiting for me at the swipe machine at the entrance of the dining hall. “Do you need me to swipe you in?”

“No, I’m good,” I said. I didn’t even reach into my pocket. Instead, I walked to the student working the swipe machine and told her that Vera, the manager, said I could come down for lunch if I wanted.

“Sure thing,” she said, letting me pass through.

“I’ll never get used to your connections,” Pete said as I followed him to the Italian food station for some spaghetti and meat balls. After filling our plates with food that could only be described as questionable, we found a seat in a booth near the back, away from the freshman and the other international students.

“So how’s it been going?” he asked me two bites in.

“Not bad,” I replied. “Just busy. School, getting ready for Homecoming. You know the drill.”

“Yeah, of course,” he said, nodding at me and twirling his fork around some pasta. “You kids here sure know how to work hard and play hard.”

“Yeah,” I said with wide eyes. It was a moniker that had come to describe OD, and it was quite accurate. As much as we partied, we also got our shit done.

“Excited for your date this weekend?”

“I am,” I said, looking up and smiling. I put my fork down. “Amanda told you we’re going together?”

“That’s not the date I meant,” he said, cocking his head to the side. “Are you excited about your cadet?”

He lingered on the word cadet in a way that was pretty sexy. He put his teeth together and almost spat the last syllable towards me, his jealousy eeking out just a tad. I wondered how he knew already, but I wasn’t surprised if Amanda had told him.

“I guess,” I replied breezily. “I haven’t seen Mikey in a couple of weeks, so it’ll be fun to catch up. Plus, there will be a ton of VMees walking around campus this weekend, so he won’t be too awkward.”

“Yeah, I’ve heard a few of the girls are taking them.” I nodded. And then I noticed something about Pete’s face that made me swallow a touch of guilt. His jealousy had softened him in a way. He wasn’t asking me about Mike because he was happy for me. He looked genuinely hurt that I was spending the weekend on the arm of a different guy.

And as quickly as I noticed it, the look across his face vanished. It was only there for a split second, but it wasn’t lost on me. I picked up my fork and brought a meatball to my lips.

“I think you think this thing with Mike is more than what it is,” I said slowly after an awkward pause.

“What do you mean?”

“I mean that I’m not dating the guy. I’m not in love with him. I liked him in the past, he’s a good friend, and we happen to be hanging out this weekend.”

“Okay,” Pete replied simply.

“Are you cool?” I asked.

Pete looked up at me with wide eyes and a raised eyebrow.

“Why wouldn’t I be?”

“That is a very good question,” I swallowed, looking down at my plate and swallowing another bite of food as well as my attitude.

That would have been the perfect time for Pete to tell me how he felt. It would have been the perfect moment for him to say, ‘You know what, Corbin? I’m not cool with you taking a Vmee to Homecoming when you should be taking me.’

But he didn’t say that. Hell, for all I knew, he wasn’t even thinking it. I was sitting there making the whole thing up, conjuring up this straight man’s jealousy towards me, when he very easily couldn’t have given two shits less. It aggravated me that he cared so much all of a sudden. I’d let him go, and who I went out with didn’t seem like any of his concern. And yet it was, and I was affected by it. That part, I hadn’t let go of.

I was done with the conversation at that point, but I was only bites into my meal.

“What about you?” I asked, deciding to change the subject. If I couldn’t escape lunch with him, I could at least control the topic of conversation. “Are you excited to go out with Tamia?”

“I guess it’s the same way with you and Mike,” he said, spitting the last word again. “We’re friends. Hanging out. That kind of thing.”

He looked at me for a second and then back down at his plate. I shook my head, and suffered through another ten minutes of tepid, passive-aggressive awkwardness before excusing myself and walking back to the house.

Preparation for Homecoming began early on Friday morning and rested on me, almost exclusively. The only portion of the weekend that wasn’t in my control was the painting of the banner, which the seniors—with the help of a few choice freshmen rushees—took ownership over. Everything else was my domain.

I woke up on Friday and had a brief meeting with our cleaning lady, emphasizing that we needed everything to be spotless for the weekend. We went over what needed special attention, especially in our library and Great Hall where cocktails and dinner would be served.

Next, I consulted with our house mom, Laney, on what I needed her to accomplish for the weekend. We agreed that she would pick up and plate all of the hors d’oeuvres for both nights, and arrange them for me. By nine o’clock, I had filled my daily quotient of charm on those two ladies alone.

I made a to-do list during my ten o’clock class with all of the things I needed to get done. I skipped my eleven o’clock to walk to the police station to get noise permits for both party nights. After that, I borrowed Hutch’s car and drove to Walmart to pick up mixers, cups, napkins, and assorted things for the cocktail party.

I talked to Austin on my way back, and he volunteered to go to the ABC for the liquor since he already had the cash from collecting 50-dollar weekends from the brotherhood. I scratched that off my list.

By the time I got home, all I needed to do was set up the bar and stock it with the mixers I’d bought from Walmart, help the house mom arrange hors d’oeuvres in the library, on the large oak table that was usually reserved for the EC during chapter meetings. I also had to coordinate the sophomores with helping DJ Swayze move his equipment in downstairs. That task took about an hour of heavy lifting, while I hung out with Swayze and talked about some of his new music.

By five o’clock, I had everything out except the shrimp cocktail that was still defrosting downstairs. At five-thirty, I ran out of the shower in just a pair of pajama pants and a wife beater to greet the bar tenders, an older African-American couple who took all of the headache out of mixing drinks for me all night for only eighty bucks in cash. We used them every single time.

I went back upstairs to finish getting ready, and at five to six, I texted Amanda to see where she was.

To Corbin: Waiting on Tamia and Pete. They’re deciding where to go tonight.

To Amanda: Will they come here?

I couldn’t help my mild excitement at the thought of seeing Pete all dressed up. I’m sure he was all kinds of Bond worthy in a dark suit, and the thin material of my suit did little to hide my excitement. I sat down to do my tie, just in case anyone chose that moment to walk in.

To Corbin: Probably not. They’re going to cocktails and dinner at Phi Psi, Lamda for a band afterwards. We should go to that.

To Amanda: We’ll see.

I sent my disappointment over the airways of technology and finished getting dressed. By the time people filed into Lambda for their bands, I planned on being drunk and on the arm of a plain clothes VMI cadet.

Austin, Roberto, and I strolled in downstairs at a little after six. I immediately went for the bar and ordered my signature vodka gimlet for these events and made small talk with the bartenders. Austin, who was proudly dateless for the night, ordered scotch on the rocks after me, and Roberto, who was supposed to be going with an international student but she hadn’t shown up yet, had a tequila sprite.

Amanda arrived by herself at 6:20, wearing a light blue cocktail dress. Her hair was slick and pulled back, and she looked pretty. Very pretty.

“You almost look good enough to turn for,” I smiled, giving her a hug and leading her into the library. There were almost forty people milling around, shooting the shit, and getting wasted.

“I could say the same about you,” she replied. I smiled.

The purpose of the cocktail party, besides drinking booze that my brothers and I had chipped in for, was two-fold. First, we were trying to get to know the freshman on our rush list on a more intimate level. Sure, we’d partied with them, had them over for ragers, or taken them to wing night to watch football games. This was our chance to really get down to the nitty gritty: we want you in our house. Let’s talk shop.

The second objective was to parade around the girls that we had access to. Girls from all over campus came in and out of our house at various times, but that didn’t necessarily mean we had access to them. We couldn’t just ask any girl that walked in on a date. These girls we had on our arms were the ones we could hook up with when Kappa struck out. These were Chi Beta girls… and they’d be your girls too if you joined us.

And with that in mind, I started working the crowd.

First up for me and Amanda were David Marcossi and his date. She was a bigger freshman girl with a very pretty smile and jet black hair. I had no doubt that she’d rush Pi Phi, and so I let her and Amanda schmooze it up while I got to talk to David Marcossi.

“Why not join the tennis team here?” I asked after bringing up that he’d played varsity for four years in high school.

“It’s hard to play tennis when you’re smoking up every day,” he said with smile. At first I thought he was joking, but then after an awkward silence, I realized he wasn’t.

“You don’t seem like a pothead,” I said. “That’s a good thing!” I added quickly.

“Well thanks,” he said to me. “You don’t seem like a lot of things you are.”

I cocked my head to the side.

“Such as?”

“A gay,” he said without skipping a beat. That sent a roll of laughter up from my stomach and out of my mouth, filling the library. His delivery of the line had been perfect, hilarious, and I hadn’t realized before that night that David Marcossi was actually quite funny.

As I made my way around the room, I kept one eye on the door thinking that Pete and Tamia might come in. It was stupid, and slightly selfish of me considering the plans I had for the night, but I couldn’t help it. I wanted to see him.

But of course, they never came. They went to their awesome dinner at Phi Psi and ate awesome food, and drank awesome drinks, and probably soaked up each other’s awesomeness, while I spent two hours that night chatting it up with freshmen I barely knew but had to pretend to like.

I will note that I made a point of talking to Lee that night, with Stephanie Doleman in close proximity. I approached them with a harmless smile and offered a peaceful hand in an attempt to ease the tension that had built up thick between us.

“Look, Lee, despite everything that’s gone down, I’m glad you came tonight,” I said to him.

“Well, it’s hard to say no when Hutch is calling you every other day,” he replied with a smirk.

“He’s quite the aggressive rush chair. I can have him cool it if you want,” I said.

“No, it’s fine. It’s cool. Look, I like this place, so I’m just glad to see that I didn’t completely ruin my chances of getting in,” he said. I nodded, understanding almost completely why he’d done what he’d done. For a freshman, the four months of the rush process are daunting, and Lee had just wanted to buy some assurances early on. And he’d done that. But while he may have been buying the option to venture out and explore his options, I’m sure Doleman had told him now was the time to make a clear statement that he wanted Chi Beta, and he was sorry for what he’d done.

I was willing to give him another chance, I decided. In light of how fucked up my actions had been in reaction to what he’d done, he wasn’t a bad kid. He had just gotten out of the gate too quickly and tipped his hand too aggressively. He’d been punished, and it was time for me to forgive and forget.

“You’re good,” I told him sincerely, resolving that I probably wouldn’t ball him when it was time to make that decision. “We should hang out sometime this week. Be beer pong partners or something.”

“Yeah, that’d be cool,” he nodded.

“Look who’s talking again,” David Marcossi slurred, coming towards us and putting his arm around both Lee and I. Being almost a foot taller than I was, I had to look up to assess just how drunk the freshman was.

“Well, you can’t stay away from this smile forever,” I said charmingly, hoping to break the ice and ease away from the conversation.

“Evidently not,” David replied with a look that I didn’t quite understand.

After cocktails trickled down and ended at about 7:30, the freshman who’d received multiple invitations took their dates to a house that was serving dinner that night. Those who stuck around, we assumed hadn’t received multiple invitations, or at least weren’t interested in the others and were pretty much suicide rushing Chi Beta.

That group included Finch, one of the junior’s little brothers, as well as David Marcossi, Brandon, and Lee. The foursome were all pulled into Hutch’s room with their dates to take shots while we made dinner plans. While Hutch debated between ordering some pizzas for the group and taking everyone out for wings, Amanda and I decided that we’d go and get food from the co-op and save some money.

In our suits and dresses, we walked to campus and had Vera make us up some sloppy hamburgers and greasy fries. On the way home, stuffed from greasy burgers, my phone vibrated. Part of me thought it might be Pete asking about my plans for the night, but when I pulled it out and looked at the screen, I had to settle for a call from Mike.

“Hey bud,” he said cheerfully on the other line.

“Hey sexy,” I said, looking at Amanda and mouthing the words ‘Mike’ to her.

“What time should I come down? I’m done with dinner, and just shooting the shit,” he said.

“You can come whenever,” I said. “Now if you want. I’m about to go put on something casual and then head to a couple of parties.”

“Okay,” he said. “That sounds good. So I’ll give it about twenty minutes so you don’t think I’m too eager.”

“Killer, I know how eager you are to get into my bedroom, so give it however long you want.”

“I’m getting in my Jeep right now,” he said. I could tell he was smiling, buttering me up, playing nice for the night that was about to come.

“Y’all are seriously at the corner of dysfuntion junction,” Amanda said when I’d hung up.

“What?”

“Nothing, it’s just… how does he even claim to be straight anymore?”

“Beats me,” I said.

“And how are you okay with him coming down, flirting with you, having you do whatever it is that you want to do, but when you go out together, he hits on your girlfriends?”

“It’s an occupational hazard that comes with dating a straight guy.”

“It shouldn’t,” she said.

“I know,” I replied matter of factly. “But I’m the one he goes home with after his flirting and hitting, so… I live with it.”

Amanda shook her head, and I could tell she disapproved. I knew she wanted more for me, but this was my situation. I was gay at one of the most conservative schools in the nation. For the time being, that was as good as it was going to get.

“I’m gonna go change and then make some decisions,” she said.

“Okay. You can come back to the house and pregame with Mike and I, if you want,” I told her.

“You don’t want me to do that,” she smiled.

“Okay, maybe not.”

“I think I’ll meet up with Pete and Tamia when they go to the Lambda band party,” she replied. We said our goodbyes and promised to meet up later. Phase one of my date night walked back to her house in the dark.

When I got back to the frat house, I found the rest of my class playing beer pong with some of the cooler freshman in the game room upstairs. They’d ordered pizza, brought a ton of beer up from the basement, and were verging on blackout. I can’t lie, seeing the guys playing beer pong in suits and ties and their dates sipping Natties in cocktail dresses was comical to say the least.

“Hey dude, where’ve you been?” Hutch asked when I entered the room and said a quick hello to everyone.

“I just went to grab a bite with Amanda,” I replied, already back at the door and ready to make my exit.

“What do you have going on tonight?” Hutch asked, jumping over Hayley so he didn’t have to talk across the room.

“Nothing man,” I said, walking him out and into the hallway. “Late Night is set up, so I might hit up some of the bands in town and then the country. I’ll be back here at some point.”

“Why not stick around and play some pong with us?” he asked. It was a direct question that deserved a direct answer, so I gave Hutch the truth.

“I’m meeting up with the cadet, so… I thought we’d party it up before we come back here,” I answered. There was no way the cadet was hanging out at a kickback with my brothers. They wouldn’t have stood for it. It was tense enough for a Vmee at a big party where he could blend in and be anonymous. But if he were to try and kick it in a small venue, all eyes would be on him. And they wouldn’t be welcoming eyes.

“Are you seriously going out with him tonight?”

“I’m not in the mood for a lecture,” I cut him off, walking around the corner towards my bedroom.

“I’m not lecturing you, I’m just… what about Pete?”

“I’m done with Pete. Done chasing Pete. Over it,” I said, probably too loudly for the ears of that hallway.

“But Corbs, the cadet? Talk about one step forward, two steps back…”

“I’m really not interested in hearing it from someone who’s Homecoming date is the same girl he’s been claiming to avoid for four weeks,” I retorted, probably nastier than I intended, but the meaning was all there. Hutch got the point and backed off.

“Well, you have fun tonight,” he said with a deep breath. “I’ll see you at Late Night.”

“For sure,” I said, letting myself into my room. I took a deep breath.

I was more than slightly annoyed at how everyone was reacting over the Mike invitation. Sure the situation with the cadet was less than ideal, but what was I going to do? The gay dating population at OD was small to nill, and the one guy that I was interested in couldn’t have given a rat’s ass about me. If I had to compromise a little bit of my integrity for a warm shoulder that night, I wasn’t going to apologize for it, and I didn’t see why I needed to. Every single person who had had something to say about the cadet and I had done even worse things for sex. I wasn’t apologizing, and that was that.

Exactly eight minutes later, Mike texted me that he was parked in front of the house. I walked down, through the great hall that had been cleared for Late Night, and out the front doors. I watched as my sexy cadet, in his full on white fatigues, stepped confidently up the steps towards my house.

“Well that’s a sight,” I said with a smile.

“You can’t take your eyes off of me,” he smiled back. He gave me a half hug when he reached the top, and I led him into the house with his arm draped over my shoulder.

Why couldn’t it be like that with Pete, I thought? Mike was as deeply in the closet as anyone I knew, and yet when it came to our chemistry, it wasn’t something that he went out of his way to hide. He was confident enough in his masculinity to be seen walking around with his arm around a guy. And yet, his claims of straightness were as loud as the Brit’s.

We bound up the stairs to my room, where I sat down on the couch with two full Solo cups of vodka and Gatorade.

“I’m ready for that striptease, killer,” I said, leaning back and giving Mike my lustiest look.

“Are you?”

“I am,” I nodded.

“What am I gonna wear?”

“Anything you want,” I said. “I have polos, jeans… whatever.”

“I like your clothes,” he said, looking through my closet. My room was laid out in such a way that the door-adjacent wall was one long closet, covered by a sheet. Mike pulled it back from the middle and ruffled around, looking for a suitable outfit, while I watched him from behind.

He finally settled on a pair of straight cut jeans, a striped Henley t-shirt, and my green Polo puffer vest. I knew my clothes would look good on his muscular frame. They clung to his pecks, his arms, and most importantly his ass.

“Are you gonna blink ever?” Mike asked. I smiled, stood up from the couch as fluidly as possible and walked right up to Mike, I put my hands on his chest and undid the second and third buttons on the Henley shirt, getting as close to him as I could get.

“That’s better,” I said softly without looking down to verify. “I want to kiss you.”

“Corbin, you know how I feel about that,” he said, putting his hands on my wrists. “Hanging out, having fun. That’s one thing. But making out… I dunno, it’s a little weird for me.”

“We’ve done it before,” I said, trying not to sound as desperate as I felt.

“And we’ll probably do it again. Later tonight. When I’m drunk,” he replied. I took a step back.

“Don’t be like that.”

“I’m not being like anything,” I said, forcing my voice to sound tempered. I hadn’t expected the brush off to start so early, but there it was at eight minutes past nine.

Mike and I took two shots of vodka before he insisted on going to the game room.

“None of my brothers want to see you,” I said truthfully when he insisted the second time.

“Why not?”

“They don’t like cadets,” I answered. “It’s nothing personal.”

That was a lie. It was personal. They didn’t like the effect that Mike had on me. They thought I was being used by a sexually confused macho man who enjoyed having his ego stroked by a boy who enjoyed stroking other things.

“Well then you owe me the chance to prove that not all cadets are douche bags,” he said, looking me right in the eye. There was no way to say no to eyes that brown and that deep.

“Fine,” I said, pouring one more shot for the both of us. “But I’m going to need to get drunk for this.”

“Be my guest, babe.” Mike grabbed his glass and slammed it. I let my mind linger on the last word as my tongue burned on cheap vodka. A minute later, we walked into the game room to the on-looking eyes of Chi Betas, current and future.

There were about eight brothers hanging out, a mixture of sophomores and juniors. With them were a handful of potential new members, still in suits and ties. Sprinkled around the room were a random assortment of girls, all of which were substantially drunker than the guys.

“Where’s Jackson?” I asked Hutch as I entered the room, not saying anything about the poorly disguised Vmee standing right behind me.

“They’re smoking at their house,” he answered. I only asked because Jackson was the only other out Chi Beta that I was worried would try to flirt with Mike. With him at his own house, I was in the clear. I grabbed two Natural Lights from the cooler that was keeping them cold and handed one to Mike.

“Say, who’s up next?” Mike asked Brandon, who was standing center table watching Austin and Roberto play Newby and a freshman at beer pong.

“You if you want it,” the freshman replied.

“Who is that?” Sacha whispered to me as I watched Mike interact with Brandon.

“He’s a cadet,” I told her, keeping my voice as hushed as hers.

“His body…” she whispered. “Good job, Corbin.”

“I’m doing my civic duty,” I smiled at her. A second later, Mike crossed the room to me and said we were up next on the table.

“Are you sure that’s a good idea?” I asked.

“Of course it is,” he replied. “I’m amazing at beer pong.”

“We call it beiruit here.” Hutch was being blatantly rude and I shot him a look. “House rules.”

“Oh, cut him some slack,” Sacha chimed in. “I’m sure some of us here could learn a thing or two from him. You look like you have impeccable form on the table, Mike.”

I knew that Mike didn’t like it when I made a big jealous deal about things when we were together. It was an unspoken thing that my friends knew who he was and what we were, but we never made a play about it in front of them. But seeing Sacha and her herd of horny toads sitting there eyeballing Mike almost made me break that pact. I wanted to tell the cunts to backoff, but I held my tongue and checked myself.

“You should see me pick up ground balls,” Mike smiled charmingly. I almost gagged on my beer. I caught Roberto’s face, and I immediately sensed that he was already over the cadet being there.

We waited for the current game to wind down, and after a couple minutes of back and forth, Austin finally sank the last cup and ended the freshman run.

“Alright,” Mike said to me, slapping me on the back like a football teammate. “Who are we gonna beat?”

“You’ve met Austin and Roberto,” I said as we walked up to our side of the table. I arranged cups while Mike pulled two beers for us to use on the game.

“Yeah, I do know you guys,” he said.

“Last time we saw you, you were getting in a fight with a Phi Kap,” Austin said, arranging the ten cups for his team.

“Yeah, a guy that was talking smack to Corbin,” he replied. It had actually been pretty cute, Mike sticking up for me. It would have been super cute if he’d defended me to a Phi Kap anywhere except at that very Phi Kap’s house. It didn’t feel cute at the time, having to get between a Phi Kap and a cadet, but in hindsight, I appreciated it.

I watched Roberto shrug as he filled his cups up with cold beer from the cooler. Austin grabbed the water cup from his side of the table and walked passed me, looking into our water cup.

“I think your dip cup needs changing too,” he said, cocking his head towards me. I knew what he meant, and so I grabbed my solo cup filled with dirty warm water and followed him into the hall.

“What the fuck is this?”

“What?”

“You’re going out with the cadet now?”

“We’re not going out. We’re hanging out,” I said.

“What’s the difference?”

“Going out includes dinner,” I cocked my head with attitude.

“You are like a fucking yoyo,” Austin whispered harshly, flipping his water into the bathroom sink. “One minute you’re running off to see this British guy and the next minute you’re carting in a VMI cadet?”

“I’m waiting to hear how that’s a problem for you,” I shot back tartly.

“Corbin…”

“No, listen,” I said, squaring off with Austin as my cup of water overflowed in the sink. “What I do with my personal life is my concern and only mine. I brought my date to our little function. I played my part in rush, and now I’m hanging out with a friend.”

“Who didn’t speak to you once over the summer…”

“And who’s more than willing to talk now,” I shot back. I took a deep breath, and turned off my faucet. “Look, I know where I stand with Mike. He’s not confusing or… confused. We’re friends who occasionally hook up, and I’m fine with that.”

I looked Austin in the eye as I said more with less words. As my brother, and as an observer of the last month, he had to know how frustrated I’d become with my situation. He couldn’t have blamed me for seeking out something easy, something guaranteed. There were basic things that a guy in college craved, and if I wasn’t going to get a swallow from a Brit, I wasn’t going to apologize for getting one from a cadet.

“I just don’t want this guy to hurt you,” Austin said, grabbing his cup and leveling off the top.

“And when he starts to, I’ll let you know,” I said, my attitude subsiding. “And call off Roberto before he makes everything awkward.”

We walked back into the room just in time to hear some trash talking words from Roberto to Mike.

“This isn’t VMI. Real men play with ten cups, not five,” he was saying.

“If we’re talking real men, why not play full cup,” Mike retorted. His stance was wider and thicker than Roberto’s, who spent every waking moment in the gym. I watched the two eye each other like cats in an alley, waiting for the other to make a move.

Austin whispered something in Roberto’s ear, and I physically watched my brother deflate just a little. He still looked like he’d jump the table to get to Mike, but he eased off on the threatening stance.

“Y’all just kick off,” he said, his teeth gritted.

I wasn’t surprised that my pledge class was less than thrilled to see me with Mike. There was absolutely no love lost there, and they hated how he treated me. But the source of my annoyance towards them was how they babied me. I was a big boy, and I knew what I was getting into.

Austin was able to temper his teammate enough to make eight of their ten cups. Mike and I were able to control our emotions enough to make all ten of ours. What made playing with Mike so much fun was how supportive he was, winning or not. Every time I came off a shot without making it, he’d put his hand on the small of my back and whisper something incredible in my ear.

“You’ve got the next one, babe,” he’d say so that only I could hear it. It would make me blush, having someone so hot be so affectionate towards me in a room full of people. But the ambient audience wasn’t paying too close attention, and the only person it bothered was ‘Berto.

As much as Roberto hated Mike, he hated losing more. I watched his face as Mike extended a hand.

“Good game,” Mike said, trying to make peace. ‘Berto looked him up and down as if he was a piece of trash on a street corner, forced himself to shake Mike’s hand, and mumbled a response.

“Wow,” I said, not ready to let Roberto off the hook. “Very charming of you, ‘Berto.”

Roberto stopped at the door on his way out and gave me a look that easily could have turned me to stone. He cocked his head to the side, indicating I follow him out into the hall.

“Fill our cups, will you?” I asked Mike. “I’ll be right back.”

“For sure.”

I didn’t want to talk to Roberto while he was in one of his moods, but I sucked it up and followed him out into the hall.

“I’m sorry I was a jerk,” he said softly, leaning up against the wall, his accent thick with beer and whiskey.

“I wasn’t expecting that,” I said. I had expected him to grill me on what I was doing, what I was thinking, and how idiotic I was.

“I just… me da rabio cuando… it makes me mad when you don’t…,” he said softly, catching himself as he slipped into Spanish too advanced for my limited knowledge. “You can do better than that guy.”

I sighed, knowing that ‘Berto meant well.

“Look, he can’t hurt me, so don’t worry. We’re just hanging out,” I told him. “I needed a break from these stupid OD boys. Besides, this weekend is about finding you a girl, so focus.”

I decided to turn it around and be lighthearted instead. It would have been easy to crank up the attitude, but that wouldn’t have helped anyone.

“You’ll be my wingman in the country?”

“Are y’all going out to the country?”

“Of course! You’re not having all the fun, maricon,” he said, following me back into the room. He was still visibly annoyed, but to a much lesser degree than before.

Mike and I proved to be a pretty solid team, defeating our next two opponents before losing to Newby and Hayley, who Hutch graciously let him play with, and packing us into a sober car to go to the country. On our way out of the house, we were reminded by Dom to make it back to Late Night.

It was just Mike and me in the backseat as the beer began mixing with the liquor in my system and going to my head. Without even thinking, I scooted in next to Mike and he instinctively put his arm around me. I saw Adrian, the sober sophomore on duty, look at us for a second in his rearview mirror, but he didn’t say anything. I didn’t expect him to comment at all. I was one of three people who knew about Adrian’s relationship with one of our super seniors, and I hadn’t told anyone.

“I think that Roberto character likes you,” Mike whispered in my ear. I could feel his breath on the side of my head. It would have been impossible for two people, especially one straight and one gay, to be any closer in the backseat of a black sedan.

“Oh you do?”

“He’s jealous of me. That’s the only way to explain his attitude tonight.”

“You don’t know ‘Berto,” I replied. “He’s protective. He’s the mother lion of our group.”

“He’s an ass,” Mike called out. I caught Adrian’s eye in the rearview mirror again.

“Don’t say that,” I said, turning to Mike.

“Sorry. He’s a tough pill to swallow.”

“Well good thing you aren’t swallowing anyone but me,” I smiled. Mike shook his head and smirked.

“I’m not swallowing anything,” he made a point to say loud enough for Adrian to hear.

“I’m sure,” Adrian smiled into the mirror.

“Now all of your friends are going to think I swallow,” Mike complained like a little kid. I laughed.

“You’d have to suck something in order to accomplish that,” I said. I turned to Adrian as the car came to a stop, and held his shoulder as I reiterated one more time that Mike the Cadet didn’t swallow.

“Got it,” was the kid’s only response.

Mike and I hung out for the rest of the night, enjoying each other in a way that only a straight guy and the gay guy that liked him could. He played his best game, keeping his flirting with girls and posturing to a minimum. It was something that always annoyed me when I went out with Mike, but it was something I endured.

I didn’t know if Mike could tell I had one eye roving the party scene at all times, expecting at any minute to see Pete. But I never did. We had four beers in the country before Mike stopped drinking so he’d be able to drive back to Lexington before two.

“Or you could stay the night,” I said when he announced that he was done.

“You know I can’t,” he said, half hugging me and putting his hand just above my ass. I could smell every inch of his body—musk and the faintest hint of Polo cologne.

“I know,” I said. “But one day I wish you would.”

He looked at me and shrugged. His eyes were getting narrower and I worried about his chances of sobering up in two and half hours.

“Would it be different if I was a girl?” I asked, looking him in the eye as I pulled out my phone to call Adrian.

“What do you mean?”

“I mean, if I was a girl would you be able to spend the night?”

“If you were a girl, I’d still have to go back to barracks,” he said. I nodded, looked down at my phone and scrolled until I found Adrian. I put the phone to my ear to listen to it ring.

I was just starting to think that everything with Mike had been a waste. Maybe it wasn’t the best idea to bring him in in order to push the Brit out. What I was going to get out of it? Nothing but an evening out with a guy who couldn’t spend the night.

And as I got ready to call us a ride to take us back home, I asked myself the tough question.

Was it worth it?

“I’d spend the night with you,” Mike said. “In fact, maybe one of these days I will.”

“Hey, Adrian,” I said into the phone, smiling up at Mike. “Can you pick me up from the country? Where you left us.”

“Already?” Adrian asked.

“Yeah, I have to get this asshole home,” I joked. He poked me under the rib. Adrian said he’d be there in a few, after he dropped some seniors off at an off campus house in town.

“Speaking of spending the night,” Mike said when I hung up on Adrian. “Maybe you should come with me next weekend.”

“Come with you where?” I asked.

“To our upperclassmen formal. It’s going to be huge. We’re renting out an entire floor of the Howard Johnson and literally trashing the place,” he said. “Last year, the school had to pay eight grand in damages.”

“After one night?” I asked, my eyes wide.

“One night. A couple hundred crazy Vmees and their dates. Unlimited booze. You’ll die.”

“Literally,” I said as we stood at the top of the hill waiting for our ride.

“You should come.”

“Really?”

“You brought me here. Obviously, I’ll take a girl date, but trust me when I say girls don’t make it past eight o’clock. Besides, I’d rather get filthy drunk with you than some slut from Mary Baldwin.”

“I’ll meet all of your friends,” I said. He shrugged. “You know I get grabby when I’m drunk.” He smiled.

“Like this,” he said, pinching the skin right under my rib cage. I squirmed and giggled like a little girl, attracting the eyes of the other Founders waiting for their rides. I didn’t give a fuck.

“Or like this,” I said, grabbing his crotch through my jeans that he was wearing. He looked around for a second, probably to see who was watching. The majority of the student body was too drunk to care what two guys were doing in the dark, and those who weren’t didn’t know Mike well enough to care who I was feeling up.

“Dude,” he said awkwardly, grabbing my wrist. He didn’t do much to push me away, so I kept my grip firm. “You’re gonna give me a hard on.”

“You say that like it’s a bad thing,” I smiled.

“You’re bad. Awful.”

“Again… bad thing?”

Just then, two sets of lights drove up down the street. I released Mike as the first set passed us, causing me to squint. The second set of headlights stopped right next to us. I saw Adrian in the driver’s seat, smiled, and hopped into the car with Mike behind me.

“Back to the house?”

“Yes sir,” I replied. “Has Late Night gotten going yet?”

“People are trickling in,” Adrian replied. “I think a lot of the people that are starting to get picked up are going there now.”

“Late Night?” Mike asked.

“Our basement party,” I explained. “Usually starts up around one or two and goes on until four or five.”

“Too bad I can’t stay for that.” Mike looked down at his watch. I stole a glance and saw that it was already 12:30.

“We can hang out in my room until you have to go,” I said. And that’s exactly what we did. I got Mike some coffee from downstairs and water to help with the sobering process. When I came in with two cups, one hot and one cold, he was sitting on my bed playing with Mister. As soon as I walked in, the cat jumped off Mike’s leg and ran to me, circling my leg as I approached the stranger.

“I don’t think your cat likes me very much,” Mike said, showing me a scratch on his forearm. “When I tried to pick her up.”

I looked at him and then down at Mister. It surprised me that my cat, who up until the week prior didn’t have enough energy to scratch anyone, was aggressive towards Mike. I brushed it off, but not before thinking that Mister was practically as in love with Pete as I had been.

Mike and I sat and talked for almost an hour. He explained what their formal the following week was all about and I listened, resting my head on his chest as he played with my hair. I would have loved to do more with him, straddle him, kiss him. But we’d already discussed the kissing thing once that night and I didn’t want to push it.

“I should leave here in about ten minutes,” he said, looking me in the eye. He raised and eyebrow and I knew what he was implying.

“What do you think we could get done in ten minutes?” I asked.

“What you started in the country,” he smiled with a wink. I slowly traced my hand from where it was on his chest, feeling every ripple of muscle, every curvature, as I inched my way down. By the time I got to the belt loop of his pants, Mike and I were making unbreakable eye contact. He licked his lips and drew in his breath just as I undid the button on his jeans.

“You really do make me feel good,” he whispered, kissing me on the head. I reached into his pants and immediately felt the heat from his dick. One graze and I knew he was impossibly hard. I didn’t even fish his dick out, but instead wrapped my hand around it right then, squeezed tight, and solicited a sigh from the guy who was powerless underneath me.

I could have given him a blow job, but between me and you, I wasn’t in the mood. I liked our positioning. I liked feeling him wrapped around me, my side getting to feel every move his body made under my touch. It was simple, but it was sexy.

And right then, after stroking his dick inside my jeans for ten minutes, I felt him tense up. I watched his eyes roll back, his toes curl, and felt his fingers clasp the hair on the back of my hand. His body arched up, sending my head reeling from his chest.

“Oh, fuck, babe,” he moaned. I felt his cum cover my hand inside his pants as he spasmed under my touch. I squeezed every bit out as I drew out every last feeling of his orgasm, his body contorting up and down and his eyes darting wildly as he came. It was a sight to behold, I’ll tell you that.

And a second later, Mike was up and looking for his uniform.

“You can wear that back,” I said, referring to the pants that now were filled with cadet cum.

“You know I can’t wear street clothes back to barracks,” he replied, pulling my pants off and stepping into his commandos. I noticed that he had left his underwear behind, and I couldn’t help but chuckle inside.

“Enjoying the show?” he asked as he pulled his shirt on and tucked it in.

“I always do,” I smiled. I got up and handed Mike his hat and watched him put on the final touches as he straightened up.

“I had fun tonight,” he said.

“We’ll do it again tomorrow? There’s an even bigger party out in the country that we can go to pretty early on,” I told him.

“I’m there,” he smiled. I wanted to kiss him so bad, but I knew I would be pushing it if I tried. Instead, I patted him on the back.

“Come on, killer,” I said, leading him out. “Did you park in the front or the back?”

“The front,” he replied. Instead of sneaking him out the back landing and making him walk all the way around the house, I led Mike through the Great Hall where people had already begun to gather. I didn’t give a flying fuck who was watching me lead a cadet from upstairs all the way down and through the hall. I knew eyes were on us as we made our way through the crowd, but I ignored them and kept walking forward.

“See you tomorrow,” I said once we got outside. Mike smiled, tipped his hat to me and sprang down the stairs, across our lawn and to his jeep.

I took a deep breath and for a split second congratulated myself on successfully spending a party night not obsessing over the Brit.

I had done it, with the help of a sexy cadet, and it felt good. Freeing. I hadn’t wondered where he was or if I’d run in to him. I hadn’t had the urge to call him and invite him over. I didn’t once picture how much more fun I would be having with him on my arms.

I turned and walked back into the house.

And as if he knew, by some weird sixth sense, that I had been thinking about him, there he was as soon as I walked through the door. He stood there, looking at me, wide eyed, both of us deer in adjacent headlights.

“Hi,” I said innocently, not sure if he’d seen me walk the Vmee out.

“Hi,” he replied. There was an awkward pause. A still silence in a room full of moving people. And then he asked the question that I can still hear wringing in my mind to this day.

“Was that him? Was that the cadet? Was that your guy?”

I hope you enjoyed the chapter! As always, comments and reviews are always appreciated.

Copyright © 2016 Jwolf; All Rights Reserved.
  • Like 25

Recommended Comments

Chapter Comments

I know. I know. There's a method to all the madness Pete and Corbin not hooking up is causing me, but I feel it in my heart your have your reasons for torturing me and all those other readers with.

I hate to admit this but I am beginning to really like Corbin and beginning to feel like one of the brothers.

Thanks for posting this so I am able to read it.

Link to comment

I'll leave it at this; Great chapter! I can't really say much more a I just don't know what to say in regards to Corb and Pete. I do, somewhat, like Mike. Don't really like his flirting with girls while out with Corb but I do understand it. Maybe it would be better for Corb to just work on Mike and see if he can get him to commit to him a little more.

Link to comment
On 01/20/2013 05:16 PM, Swhouston44 said:
I know. I know. There's a method to all the madness Pete and Corbin not hooking up is causing me, but I feel it in my heart your have your reasons for torturing me and all those other readers with.

I hate to admit this but I am beginning to really like Corbin and beginning to feel like one of the brothers.

Thanks for posting this so I am able to read it.

Hey SW! Thanks for the review. I always appreciate hearing from you. That's a big compliment, saying you feel like one of the brothers. I'm really glad that I've been able to make Corbin's struggle so real for you. There is a method to it all, and the next chapter is huuuuuge. HUGE. I hope you'll enjoy it. Thanks again!
Link to comment
On 01/20/2013 06:21 PM, CW Prince said:
I'll leave it at this; Great chapter! I can't really say much more a I just don't know what to say in regards to Corb and Pete. I do, somewhat, like Mike. Don't really like his flirting with girls while out with Corb but I do understand it. Maybe it would be better for Corb to just work on Mike and see if he can get him to commit to him a little more.
That's the thing about Mike that I have to try and capture from real life and put into the story: he sneaks up you. You'll watch him start to soften all of the people that Corbin introduces him to. You don't really know why, but you end up liking him for some reason. I think that's what grabbed Corbin in the first place. Anyway, more soon, and thanks for the review!
Link to comment

Pete and Mike are a fascinating contrast. Mike offers what he can, given his situation, and appears to be up front with Corbin on that. Corbin has at least a basic understanding of where Mike's at in terms of their relationship. Pete, on the other hand, remains non-commital, for whatever reason. Pete's on the dance floor, but he's not dansing.

Yeah, I like Mike as well. I'm wondering if at some point you'll let us know what "direction" he eventually took, if you know that is. It's a curiousity more than anything.

I really enjoyed this chapter! :2thumbs: Definitely looking forward to the next.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
On 01/21/2013 05:11 AM, Conner said:
Pete and Mike are a fascinating contrast. Mike offers what he can, given his situation, and appears to be up front with Corbin on that. Corbin has at least a basic understanding of where Mike's at in terms of their relationship. Pete, on the other hand, remains non-commital, for whatever reason. Pete's on the dance floor, but he's not dansing.

Yeah, I like Mike as well. I'm wondering if at some point you'll let us know what "direction" he eventually took, if you know that is. It's a curiousity more than anything.

I really enjoyed this chapter! :2thumbs: Definitely looking forward to the next.

Hey Conner! Glad you enjoyed the chapter. It was definitely intentional to make Mike the anti-thesis of Pete. What's funny is that I'm writing about conversation and events that really did happen, and at the time I had no clue how much of a contrast Mike and Pete were. Now, it's like duh! Anyway, keep reading the story, and I'm sure your curiousity will be satiated... at least in epilogue :)
Link to comment

I am still really proud of Corbin. He is doing exactly what needs to be done, even if I don't agree with it. I just want him to get with Pete. He is being smart about it. If he forces the issue Pete will shut down and run away. At least this way, Pete thinks its his idea.

Mike... Hmmm don't really know what to think of him. Part of me likes him because I think he is a good guy but then part of me does not like what he does to Corbin. The ONLY saving grace he has at this point is that he has always identified himself as straight. He is not comfortable in his own skin. What is it about poor Corbin that attract these types to him. Goodness. You know what makes me think that Mike is going to be a pain in the ass later? Mister didn't like him. Cats are a good judge of character.

Anywho. Wonderful chapter. I still think they should make a show out of this story. It would be funny as hell. It would be the hell out of that Honey Boo-Boo idiot crap. UGH.

Link to comment
On 01/21/2013 10:52 AM, Carrie76 said:
I am still really proud of Corbin. He is doing exactly what needs to be done, even if I don't agree with it. I just want him to get with Pete. He is being smart about it. If he forces the issue Pete will shut down and run away. At least this way, Pete thinks its his idea.

Mike... Hmmm don't really know what to think of him. Part of me likes him because I think he is a good guy but then part of me does not like what he does to Corbin. The ONLY saving grace he has at this point is that he has always identified himself as straight. He is not comfortable in his own skin. What is it about poor Corbin that attract these types to him. Goodness. You know what makes me think that Mike is going to be a pain in the ass later? Mister didn't like him. Cats are a good judge of character.

Anywho. Wonderful chapter. I still think they should make a show out of this story. It would be funny as hell. It would be the hell out of that Honey Boo-Boo idiot crap. UGH.

I think figuring out why Corbin attracts these confused guys. I won't tease too much, but its definitely a theme in his relationships. I will say, mister's actions weren't written accidentally. More soon :)
Link to comment

Oh, Petey! Feeling a bit jealous are we??? Hmmm? LOL.

 

Loved this chapter. Corbin takes what Mike can give and seems to be able to keep his head on straight. Loved Mister's reaction. :o)

Link to comment
On 01/22/2013 01:46 AM, secretsides said:
Oh, Petey! Feeling a bit jealous are we??? Hmmm? LOL.

 

Loved this chapter. Corbin takes what Mike can give and seems to be able to keep his head on straight. Loved Mister's reaction. :o)

Wait till you see what Petey throws at our boy next chapter! Glad you enjoyed the chapter, and thanks for the reviews!
Link to comment

Oooo! Poor Pete, he seems to be so clueless. I cannot begin to imagine where this is headed. You have gotten a lot of us addicted to it! Good job. :boy:

Link to comment
On 01/22/2013 11:14 AM, charlieocho said:
Oooo! Poor Pete, he seems to be so clueless. I cannot begin to imagine where this is headed. You have gotten a lot of us addicted to it! Good job. :boy:
Addicted? Wow... that's high praise. Thank you so much for following the story. Don't worry, you'll know where the story is headed when it gets there :)
Link to comment

Heya Jon! :)

 

Ya know, Corbin can tell himself he's over Pete till his blue balls are in his face, (Corbin's blue balls, not Pete's b/c really, we have no idea if Pete even GETS blue balls! lol), but he's full of shit. Who is he fooling? If he's spending so much time and energy concocting up plans to make Pete jealous and to make sure Pete knew Corbin was bringing Cadet Mike to the after parties, there's no way in hell he's over Pete! It's tres obvious, lol.

 

And I want to like Cadet Mike, but I don't know if I can. He was sending Corbs mixed signals; he was calling him 'babe' and sitting so close to him, but then all he did really is take from Corbin. He didn't offer anything back after Corbs gave him that nice hj. I think he's just using him. Of coure at this point Corbin is using Mike too, but he's not getting anything physical out of it. I understand that Mike way deep in that closet, but then stop sending Corbin mixed messages. Stop with the 'babe' and getting Corbin's hopes up. I mean, has he ever done anything physical with Corbs on his own, w/o Corbin doing anything to him? The chapter with him and Corbin at his place are a little fuzzy, so I don't remember. I thought though that Corbin left Mike's place with his blue balls intact. lol

 

I did have to laugh though when Mike told Corbin he thought Roberto had a thing for him. Because to me, Roberto and Austin make an awesome couple! lol And we know how hung up on 'Berto's body Corbin is! lol ;)

 

Well, needless to say, I'm on pins and needles waiting to see what happens between Pete and Corbs now. At least if they go back to Corbin's room to drink, Mister will be happy! She certainly didn't like Cadet Mike! lol

 

Great job Jon! This was definitely one of my story nominations. =)

Link to comment
On 01/24/2013 06:42 AM, Lisa said:
Heya Jon! :)

 

Ya know, Corbin can tell himself he's over Pete till his blue balls are in his face, (Corbin's blue balls, not Pete's b/c really, we have no idea if Pete even GETS blue balls! lol), but he's full of shit. Who is he fooling? If he's spending so much time and energy concocting up plans to make Pete jealous and to make sure Pete knew Corbin was bringing Cadet Mike to the after parties, there's no way in hell he's over Pete! It's tres obvious, lol.

 

And I want to like Cadet Mike, but I don't know if I can. He was sending Corbs mixed signals; he was calling him 'babe' and sitting so close to him, but then all he did really is take from Corbin. He didn't offer anything back after Corbs gave him that nice hj. I think he's just using him. Of coure at this point Corbin is using Mike too, but he's not getting anything physical out of it. I understand that Mike way deep in that closet, but then stop sending Corbin mixed messages. Stop with the 'babe' and getting Corbin's hopes up. I mean, has he ever done anything physical with Corbs on his own, w/o Corbin doing anything to him? The chapter with him and Corbin at his place are a little fuzzy, so I don't remember. I thought though that Corbin left Mike's place with his blue balls intact. lol

 

I did have to laugh though when Mike told Corbin he thought Roberto had a thing for him. Because to me, Roberto and Austin make an awesome couple! lol And we know how hung up on 'Berto's body Corbin is! lol ;)

 

Well, needless to say, I'm on pins and needles waiting to see what happens between Pete and Corbs now. At least if they go back to Corbin's room to drink, Mister will be happy! She certainly didn't like Cadet Mike! lol

 

Great job Jon! This was definitely one of my story nominations. =)

HI! Can I just say I'm so so glad you used the word 'tres obvious?' That's going in a future chapter for sure! I agree with you on Mike the Cadet. He doesn't really offer Corbin much more than a little companionship, but expect that to get a little deeper very very soon. I'm not going to tease anything, but Mike steps up in a big way, and I hope you like it. I just sent the next chapter to the editors, so... expect an update soon :)
Link to comment

First of all, I love Amanda. She is the perfect friend and beard for Corbin and seems to understand him and that his reason for seeing the cadet is to get Pet's attention.

Roberto seems pretty protective, but in a good way. I kind of wonder about Mike. In my little mind, he seems more into Corbin than what he is actually showing. There was almost a naturalness with him and Corbin, the only puzzling thing was the "no kissing" though. Go figure.

Wep, Pete was there and saw the caded. I wonder if Corbin will get as much satisfaction out of that as he seems to think he will. The Brit may not live up to the green eyed monster pic that Corbin seems to have of him in his mind. Guess that remains to be seen. On to the next chapter.

 

Great Chapter btw:P

Link to comment
On 01/27/2013 03:38 AM, joann414 said:
First of all, I love Amanda. She is the perfect friend and beard for Corbin and seems to understand him and that his reason for seeing the cadet is to get Pet's attention.

Roberto seems pretty protective, but in a good way. I kind of wonder about Mike. In my little mind, he seems more into Corbin than what he is actually showing. There was almost a naturalness with him and Corbin, the only puzzling thing was the "no kissing" though. Go figure.

Wep, Pete was there and saw the caded. I wonder if Corbin will get as much satisfaction out of that as he seems to think he will. The Brit may not live up to the green eyed monster pic that Corbin seems to have of him in his mind. Guess that remains to be seen. On to the next chapter.

 

Great Chapter btw:P

Amanda and Corbin have a couple moments coming up, but she really is a stellar friend. As for Mike you may be on to something with what you're feeling. There's a lot more going on there. I can't wait to read what you think of the next chapter :)
Link to comment
On 04/19/2013 06:20 AM, pfox25 said:
the cat brings a nice twist to the plot :)
Glad you like it. Mister was always a good secret weapon.
Link to comment

Some things you play with makes my heart skip a beat. Like the possessive pronouns. We got "his" guy here. And Mike's simpler truth. Brutal, if honest, truth about what he is able to offer Corb and what he expects in return. There's something satisfying and demure about Mike's and Corb's interactions (and of course, frustrating and so foreboding about the nano-second facial expression from Pete and his carefully chosen words), and I thought you did a fabulous job conveying the very subtle complexities of human emotion. Bravo! 

Link to comment
On 1/20/2013 at 7:11 PM, Conner said:

Pete and Mike are a fascinating contrast. Mike offers what he can, given his situation, and appears to be up front with Corbin on that. Corbin has at least a basic understanding of where Mike's at in terms of their relationship. Pete, on the other hand, remains non-commital, for whatever reason. Pete's on the dance floor, but he's not dansing.

Yeah, I like Mike as well. I'm wondering if at some point you'll let us know what "direction" he eventually took, if you know that is. It's a curiousity more than anything.

I really enjoyed this chapter! :2thumbs: Definitely looking forward to the next.

I love this - on the dance floor but not dancing. 

Link to comment
32 minutes ago, jlee09 said:

Some things you play with makes my heart skip a beat. Like the possessive pronouns. We got "his" guy here. And Mike's simpler truth. Brutal, if honest, truth about what he is able to offer Corb and what he expects in return. There's something satisfying and demure about Mike's and Corb's interactions (and of course, frustrating and so foreboding about the nano-second facial expression from Pete and his carefully chosen words), and I thought you did a fabulous job conveying the very subtle complexities of human emotion. Bravo! 

I’m so glad you’re enjoying reading it back. More complexities between Corbin/Mike/Pete to come, so hopefully I can continue to illustrate those at a high level

Link to comment

WTH?!?!?! Speechless to say the least! Corbin's obviously just being immature by expecting Pete to read his mind as to why he's getting the cold shoulder. Pete on the other hand needs to pull his head out and grow a few telling Corbin how he truly feels. Sure, he's upset and jealous because he has deep emotional feelings toward Corbin that've been developed over the last 2 months and Corbin just gave him the ice with no explanation whatsoever except an open forum display in front of the world - READ forcibly outing someone - what was Pete supposed to do? Of course he's confused and scared and Corbin is just treating him like yesterday trick. Mike, I don't even know what to think of Mike. He has to be a scorpio is all I'm saying! LOL!!! 

Link to comment
11 minutes ago, Chris L said:

WTH?!?!?! Speechless to say the least! Corbin's obviously just being immature by expecting Pete to read his mind as to why he's getting the cold shoulder. Pete on the other hand needs to pull his head out and grow a few telling Corbin how he truly feels. Sure, he's upset and jealous because he has deep emotional feelings toward Corbin that've been developed over the last 2 months and Corbin just gave him the ice with no explanation whatsoever except an open forum display in front of the world - READ forcibly outing someone - what was Pete supposed to do? Of course he's confused and scared and Corbin is just treating him like yesterday trick. Mike, I don't even know what to think of Mike. He has to be a scorpio is all I'm saying! LOL!!! 

I honestly think you may be right about the Scorpio thing... I'll have to look up when Mike's birthday was, but I'm pretty sure it was sometime in November... good guess. Their relationship is definitely complicated and Corbin doesn't do much here to uncomplicate it. More to come! Glad you're enjoying the story. 

  • Love 1
Link to comment
View Guidelines

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Newsletter

    You probably have a crazy and hectic schedule and find it hard to keep up with everything going on.  We get it, because we feel it too.  Signing up here is a great way to keep in touch and find something relaxing to read when you get a few moments to spare.

    Sign Up
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Our Privacy Policy can be found here. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue..