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    Superpride
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Best Men - 3. Chapter Three

After more internal deliberation over this supposedly simple matter, I approached Beth’s mother and told her that I would stay at her house. Despite the poor phone reception, I managed to access my online banking account and came to the realization that I should spend the absolute minimum during my stay back in Beckett. When I returned to New York City, I needed all the money in my checking account to pay for the rent of my apartment. I’d be surprised if I still had fifty dollars remaining.

After confirming the arrangement, I stayed at the backyard even when the night sky appeared, and more than half the guests returned to their homes. Luckily there were outdoors lights that illuminated the area. I sat down on a stone bench that overlooked a small patch of flowers that have closed their petals for the night. I then checked my phone and decided that right then was the perfect time to call my mother, though, I still didn’t know what she wanted to talk about. I thought the timing was too much of a coincidence, and I received my answer when I called her, and my mother answered a few seconds later.

“Rick! Beth’s mother told me you’re back at Beckett for Elizabeth’s wedding!” my mother stated.

Smothering a sigh, I said, “Yeah. I’m here. How are you, Mom?”

“I’m wonderful. Your father and I had a romantic dinner by the beach earlier today, and we ended the date with a dive into the water, with all our clothes still on!” My mother laughed.

I smiled, knowing my parents were still madly in love with one another even after thirty-five years of marriage. I could only wish that I’ll eventually meet that special someone who could fulfill my every dream with time being our only enemy.

“But I didn’t call to talk about myself. How are you, honey?” my mother asked lovingly.

“I’m all right. Happy to be attending Beth’s wedding.”

“Oh, that’s wonderful! Beth’s mother also told me that you’ll be the best man.”

I chuckled and said, “I will…well, I’ll be one of them. Beth’s brother, Freddy, is going to be the other best man,” I informed.

“Oh, that’s very interesting. You know, your father and I didn’t even have a wedding. We eloped and decided to marry in front of a judge at a courthouse instead. Your father didn’t even have a ring when he proposed to me!”

“I know, Mom,” I said before laughing heartily. “And didn’t your honeymoon consist of a cross-country trip in a friend’s RV that broke down halfway through Arizona?”

“Yes, those were the times.” My mother chuckled and continued by saying, “It wasn’t all sunshine and happiness, but we always overcame the struggles and hopefully we set a good example for you.”

“Of course you two did.”

“Are you sure? You haven’t told me about anyone special over the past two years,” my mother said with concern.

“Don’t worry, Mom. I’m just waiting for the right person. It’s hard to find someone when my parents displayed such a high standard,” I joked.

My mother, however, was silent.

“Mom? Are you still there?” I asked.

“We haven’t made you think you had to hide who you are, did we?” my mother asked suddenly.

I scratched my head and said, “What do you mean?”

“You’ve told me the reason why you broke up with Beth, and I’m just wondering if we pressured you at all into being in that relationship. We love Beth, and we honestly thought she was the perfect choice for you. If we would've known...”

“No, Mom. You and Dad didn’t pressure me into anything.” Looking around, I continued, “There was just a time when I thought I truly loved Beth, and I knew she loved me back… Later I discovered who I really am and that I couldn’t hide behind her like some kind of shield. So, I ended it before things between us became even more serious… You two are great parents, supporting me when I came out and encouraging me to pursue my dreams of going to New York City… I love you, Mom.”

The other line was silent for a moment, but then my mother spoke up and said, “I love you too, honey. And your dad as well.”

I heard my father say the three words every child should hear from their parents in the background, and I smiled. “Love you too, Dad.”

My mother and I continued to talk on the phone for about thirty minutes, both of us catching up from the last time we chatted which was over a month ago. I really should talk to them more often, at least every week since it was really a joy conversing with my parents and laughing at whatever ventures they were involved in. I wished I could see them both in person, maybe visit them at Florida and have it be a vacation.

But with my financial restraints, I didn’t think was possible. And I couldn’t ask them to visit me in New York City where I only had a one-bedroom apartment which was crowded with my art and other crafts that helped sustain my continued existence in the city.

Hopefully something could be arranged sometime soon. I knew a person could be homesick, but in my case, I just wanted to hug my parents again to alleviate the tension that developed in my heart every time I thought about them. Beckett may have been where I was born and raised, but my parents would always be my true home.

I sulked for a bit, and then Beth approached me and said, “Hey there. Are you doing all right?”

I smiled and nodded. “I am. Just had a talk with my mom on the phone.”

“Oh, that’s great! I hope she’s doing well.” Beth sat on the stone bench next to me. “So…what do you think about Aaron?”

“He’s certainly a looker, I’ll give you that.”

Beth chuckled. “Well, hopefully you’ll get to know him more as the wedding approaches.”

“Has he always lived in Beckett? I don’t think I’ve seen him at school or anywhere else in town,” I noted.

“That’s because most of his school life was at an elite boarding school somewhere in West Virginia. After that, he attended an Ivy League university where he graduated at the top of his class.”

“Wow. Impressive… So, how did you two meet each other?”

“Funny thing about that. We didn’t actually meet, more like collided with one another at an intersection near main street.”

“Wait. You got into a car accident? That’s how you met him?”

“Yeah. He rear-ended my car to be precise. I’ll spare you the details. I’ll just say that he was very apologetic, saying he would pay for all the damages. Then one thing led to another, and we ended up resolving the issue by going out on our first date.”

“How romantic,” I said humorously which earned me a playful slap on the shoulder from Beth. “But to be serious, that’s great you finally found someone who you want to spend your entire life with.”

“It all feels like a dream, and I sometimes pinch myself just to make sure that I’m actually awake… but enough about me. What about you? My mom told me you’ll be staying at my house during your stay here.”

“I hope that’s not a problem,” I said.

“No, not at all. Be warned, though. Ever since I moved out and my dad went on his diet, my mother hadn’t had much opportunity to cook real food other than for the occasional church event. So, she’ll most likely stuff you until you’re you develop stretchmarks.”

“I don’t mind having homecooked meals every day, especially after eating mostly takeout food back in the city,” I informed.

“Well, if you’re sure… Are you planning to leave soon?”

“Yeah. But if you want me to help you clean up...”

“Oh, you don’t have to. Aaron’s servants will handle that mess. Just go ahead and leave. I’ll tell my mom about the next event happening on the list, because knowing her, she’ll tell you along with everyone else in town.”

I nodded, and we hugged one more time before I left the backyard. Inside the mansion, I was about to leave through the front entrance when I felt the pressure of my bladder. Knowing it could be a very uncomfortable drive, I looked around for a bathroom. A servant who was cleaning the living room was able to direct me to the closest one.

After thanking her, I crossed the foyer and entered a corridor. After opening two doors that only led to a study room and closet, the last door at the end was the only possible option left. I hadn’t relieved myself since getting into my car and driving away from New York City, so I didn’t bother knocking before I opened the door and was introduced to a shocking sight.

Pressed against the bathroom wall were two people making out. The man had his back towards me with the other person whimpered shamelessly as they kissed. I slowly took a step back, hoping I could leave the couple and not get caught. However, as I tried to close the door, the man lowered his head to kiss the other person’s neck. With open eyes, the person saw me over the man’s shoulder and jumped. I was shocked too since the other person was another man.

Before I knew it, the man who was also a servant dashed out of the bathroom like he was on fire, bumping my shoulder hard in the process. He then ran through the corridor before disappearing from my view. I looked back inside the bathroom and was shocked once again to see Freddy who looked completely pissed as he stared me down with narrowed eyes and baring his teeth as well.

“What the hell, man? Ever heard of knocking?” Freddy shouted.

“I’m sorry! I didn’t think—Oh, God!”

“Well, thanks to you, my hookup for the day just ran away with his tail between his legs.”

Freddy’s shirt was completely unbuttoned, revealing his muscular torso. Along with his disheveled hair and swollen lips, he looked like the human personification of sex. I couldn’t redirect my eyes off his body even as he began buttoning his shirt.

“What are you looking at?”

I was able to unglue my eyes from Freddy’s body and said, “Nothing.”

Shaking his head, Freddy then said, “Out of all the people who could’ve interrupted us, that person had to be you. Unbelievable.”

I just stood there by the door, unable to comprehend what I just witnessed, but then I managed to say, “I didn’t know you’re—”

“Gay?” Freddy said before approaching me and grabbing me by the collar of my shirt. “Well, I am, and you know what? I don’t give a single shit if you decide to tell everyone in town that you caught me making out with another dude.” Nearing his lips close to my ear, he then said, “Unlike you, I don’t care about what anyone thinks about me.”

After a tense moment of silence with Freddy’s hot breath heating my skin, he released me and began walking away.

I could’ve just let him go, but for some reason I had to say, “It looks like we have something in common.”

Freddy halted his movement and turned halfway, looking at me with a raised eyebrow. “And that would be?”

Glancing back at the bathroom, I then took a deep breath and said, “I’m…I’m also gay.”

Freddy stared at me for a moment; he then snickered and crossed his arms before saying, “Yeah, I already knew that about you.”

“What?” I took a step forward. “How? For how long?”

“When you started dating my sister and you would post pictures of you two together like almost every day on your social media, all smiley and shit. They all screamed insecurity. And trust me, I have experience with people who can’t face the reality that the person who they’re with is nothing more than a mask to hide who they really are.” Aiming a finger at me, Freddy then said, “But I’m not like you. I’ll never hide behind a person to only break their heart like you did with Liza.”

I let out a harsh breath. “I was that obvious?”

“To me you were. But don’t worry. I’m sure the town will continue to view you as the golden boy.”

“The town doesn’t think that way about me,” I objected.

“Well, my parents do, especially my mother. ‘Oh, have you heard about Rick recently, son. He’s dating your sister now. Don’t you think he’s the sweetest boy ever! Why can’t you be more like him!’ Fuck, that got annoying fast.” Freddy scoffed. “Well, it turns out we’re more alike than my mother anticipated. But then again, liking dick is probably the only thing we have in common.”

“Look, I’m sorry your parents belittled you in that way, and it’s clear that you dislike me for more than one reason. But can we just…move on from all this.”

“You mean move away, while my sister was crying in her bedroom for eighteen hours of every day? Nah, I’m good. I’d rather be in a shootout than betray the people I care about.” Looking behind him, Freddy said, “With that said, I’m going to find that servant again. Hopefully, you didn’t fucking scare him too much… Later, Rick.”

Freddy offered a mock wave goodbye before sauntering through the corridor and disappearing from the corner. I was still left stunned by the conversation we just had, and I would’ve thought about it more if my bladder wasn’t pressuring me into using the toilet.

After doing my business, I exited the mansion and walked to my car. I got inside, and I just sat there with my hands on the steering wheel while staring through the windshield. The engagement party was certainly eventful with me finally meeting Beth’s fiancé and discovering that her brother was gay just like me. The conversation I just had with him continued reverberating in my head as I tried to make sense of it. I was getting a headache from thinking about this so much and in such a short span of time.

So, I decided to turn on the ignition and started playing my favorite playlist from my phone that I connected to the car speakers. As the music began to relax me and ease my headache, I then drove away from the mansion and began my short journey to Beth’s house where I would be stay for at least a month.

I was surprised that Beth’s wedding was happening so shortly after the engagement party. Usually weddings take months to prepare, but Beth casually told me in her email that all the events, including the wedding, were happening over the summer. I could only assume that she and Aaron just wanted a quick wedding. But the fact that she had Moira planning her wedding showed that everything was most likely going to be extravagant like the weddings in that hit television show.

The headache was coming back, and I just increased the volume of my music, so I couldn’t hear my own thoughts as I continued to drive to my destination.

Copyright © 2019 Superpride; All Rights Reserved.
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Chapter Comments

2 hours ago, Wesley8890 said:

Well someone has chip on their shoulder don't they?!?!

That is very true! I wonder what he'll think if he finds out that Rick is lodging in his parents' house, sleeping in his bedroom. 😮

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7 minutes ago, Israfil said:

I can see where he's coming from, but Freddy's holier than thou attitude is incredibly irritating, but then again, that's probably intentional. It can't have been nice for Beth but seriously, Rick was 18 years old - no one really knows who they are at that age - both in regards to dating Beth and not coming out. Teenagers aren't usually interested in making a statement and just want to fit in - especially in a small town. Freddy's accusations sound like the sort of thing one would throw at an adult who stayed in a loveless marriage for years before coming out, not at someone who was quite literally a child.

Of course, Freddy isn't much older than Rick so I can't imagine he's gained enough distance from the past to think like that. He just sees how his sister got her heart broken....which honestly, while it sucks, isn't that big of an issue - high school relationships usually end with graduation - it's how it works.

Thank you for the very in-depth look into this chapter! Freddy is certainly irritating, not taking into account that Rick was indeed only eighteen with many people at that same age don't even know what major they want to pursue in college. Rick was smart for ending the relationship before it became even more serious like marriage and children, and divorce is much more serious and nasty then breaking up with a high-school lover. And the small-town setting must've also contributed to Rick's need to hide his sexuality and fit in with the rest of the townspeople. It can be assume that Freddy and his family used to live in the city, a place that was more progressive, so he never had to deal with the pressures of small-town gossip, especially since he only spent his senior year in Beckett. Something major must've occurred in his past that causes him to look down at Rick. Maybe it's related to his five-year relationship that ended after he moved to Beckett. Hopefully, that is revealed soon, and Freddy's character is seen in a different light. Maybe Freddy is also harboring some feelings that he thinks he cannot express, so instead he pushes people like Rick away. We'll see as the story continues.

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18 minutes ago, Tonyr said:

Well to me it is clear thar Freddy carries a torch for Rick.

Yes, a torch that he wants to hide rather than share and will undoubtedly burn him in the process.

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The 'you broke my sister's heart and made her cry' has to be one of the flimsiest and almost desperate of excuses to harbor a grudge. Beth is quite obviously long over it. A serious romantic relationship would have been doomed to even greater and longer lasting sorrow. I think the bulk of Freddy's seeming ore lies elsewhere. Maybe he has secretly lusted for Rick all along. I also think Beth is playing matchmaker. Rick staying in Freddy's old room is priceless.

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3 minutes ago, drpaladin said:

The 'you broke my sister's heart and made her cry' has to be one of the flimsiest and almost desperate of excuses to harbor a grudge. Beth is quite obviously long over it. A serious romantic relationship would have been doomed to even greater and longer lasting sorrow. I think the bulk of Freddy's seeming ore lies elsewhere. Maybe he has secretly lusted for Rick all along. I also think Beth is playing matchmaker. Rick staying in Freddy's old room is priceless.

Yes, Freddy's reasoning for his ire towards Rick seems very conflicting and unreasonable. This anger may have resided in him long before he and his family moved into Beckett. Also, it is clear that Beth knows that both her former high-school boyfriend and older brother are gay. Maybe she is playing matchmaker. We'll see. And I wonder what Rick will stumble upon in Freddy's bedroom. 😉

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Very interesting chapter, first meeting where they actually talk interesting times ahead, they say oil and safer do mix together eventually

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2 minutes ago, Superpride said:

Yes, Freddy's reasoning for his ire towards Rick seems very conflicting and unreasonable. This anger may have resided in him long before he and his family moved into Beckett. Also, it is clear that Beth knows that both her former high-school boyfriend and older brother are gay. Maybe she is playing matchmaker. We'll see. And I wonder what Rick will stumble upon in Freddy's bedroom. 😉

Yeah. All sorts of secrets are in a boy's old bedroom.

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9 minutes ago, mikedup said:

Very interesting chapter, first meeting where they actually talk interesting times ahead, they say oil and safer do mix together eventually

Thank you! The conversation between Rick and Freddy certainly brings up plenty of questions about Freddy's past and why he acts this way towards Rick. They don't seem to be mixing very well right now, but maybe there will be a catalyst that causes a reaction between the two men.

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11 minutes ago, drpaladin said:

Yeah. All sorts of secrets are in a boy's old bedroom.

I know there were plenty of secrets in my old bedroom haha. Hopefully the bed sheets are new or at least clean.

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1 hour ago, mfa607 said:

Freddy needs an attitude adjustment! Great chapter! Thank you!

Freddy's attitude is in need of a total rehaul haha. Thanks for the commenting!

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Go Freddy!!!!

I like how unabashed he is in going for what wants;  Seems he knew about Rick all along and has a legitimate gripe against him, thing is, everyone’s journey to self acceptance isn’t the same or always easy, unfortunately people can get hurt along the way.  Rick will have a lot to do to impress Freddy.  
 

Beckett may have been where I was born and raised, but my parents would always be my true home.“  ❤️

 

Be warned, though. Ever since I moved out and my dad went on his diet, my mother hadn’t had much opportunity to cook real food other than for the occasional church event. So, she’ll most likely stuff you until you’re you develop stretchmarks.” 😆  With an endorsement like that, I certainly hope she’s a good cook.

You have a way with a line, both humorous and sentimental.  👏

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by FanLit
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3 hours ago, FanLit said:

Go Freddy!!!!

I like how unabashed he is in going for what wants;  Seems he knew about Rick all along and has a legitimate gripe against him, thing is, everyone’s journey to self acceptance isn’t the same or always easy, unfortunately people can get hurt along the way.  Rick will have a lot to do to impress Freddy.  
 

Beckett may have been where I was born and raised, but my parents would always be my true home.“  ❤️

 

Be warned, though. Ever since I moved out and my dad went on his diet, my mother hadn’t had much opportunity to cook real food other than for the occasional church event. So, she’ll most likely stuff you until you’re you develop stretchmarks.” 😆  With an endorsement like that, I certainly hope she’s a good cook.

You have a way with a line, both humorous and sentimental.  👏

 

 

 

 

 

Great to know that someone's rooting for Freddy! He certainly doesn't hold back and gets what he wants like that male servant's lips in the bathroom. You're right that it's going to take a lot of elbow grease from Rick to try to break into Freddy's hardened shell and see who he really is inside. Also, I'm glad that certain lines were impactful for you, and thank you for commenting!

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20 hours ago, droughtquake said:

It sounds a third party was closeted and caused problems for Freddie and his ex…
;–)

Yes, and who that third party is will be revealed as the story continues. What is know now is that the breakup definitely affected Freddy and has contributed to his current state of mind. Thanks for the comment!

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Brother Freddies scruffy appearance in the earlier chapter, it appears was a red herring dragged across the trail of his being gay. And his negative attitude is designed to reinforce his negativity. I will bet that as soon as he takes a shower and shaves, he and Rick will begin to see promise in each other, though I do not see them falling to bed together in the next few chapters!

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On 4/9/2020 at 9:42 AM, Will Hawkins said:

Brother Freddies scruffy appearance in the earlier chapter, it appears was a red herring dragged across the trail of his being gay. And his negative attitude is designed to reinforce his negativity. I will bet that as soon as he takes a shower and shaves, he and Rick will begin to see promise in each other, though I do not see them falling to bed together in the next few chapters!

Yeah, I love slow-burn romances, so reading them about getting wild under the sheets in the next chapter will most likely not happen haha. 

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I think I tried reading this story when chapters first came out but did not proceed due to numerous problems with grammar and editing; none of which are detectable now.  What a remarkable improvement.

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42 minutes ago, GanymedeRex said:

I think I tried reading this story when chapters first came out but did not proceed due to numerous problems with grammar and editing; none of which are detectable now.  What a remarkable improvement.

Thank you for telling me this! I use the "Read Aloud" feature on Microsoft Word. You're offered a choice of three voices, and that voice will read the story aloud. This feature helped me a lot with spotting errors before I post the finished chapter. However, even with this feature I still miss a couple or more errors if don't use it more than once.

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exxxxcellent chapter ! 😂🤣

well if Freddie didn’t want to be caught, he would have locked the room. He was supposed to be the cop 😆

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On 7/24/2020 at 5:16 PM, Danilo Syrtis said:

exxxxcellent chapter ! 😂🤣

well if Freddie didn’t want to be caught, he would have locked the room. He was supposed to be the cop 😆

Thank you so much! And yes, Freddy should've locked the bathroom door since cops should always think ahead in every situation haha!

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