A lone cicada buzzed in the still, hot air, the sun burning into my skin until I swear I could feel the freckles popping out. I didn't care. I'd spent the morning swimming in the river, and now me and Michael basked on the bank, pleasantly tired. My stomach rumbled but I was too sleepy and content to move to the bench where we'd stowed our bikes and sack lunch.
"Can't believe school starts in a few weeks. You ready, John?" Michael asked in the direction of the blue sky.
Well…damn. Why'd he have to go and spoil the moment like that?
"I guess," I said, noncommittal. We'd be starting at the local high school this fall. New classes, teachers…the locker room. My cousins told me horror stories of the gym's locker room, the towel snaps on bare skin, stolen underwear, being shoved into lockers by the older boys. They might have exaggerated. I hoped so. Middle school gym had been bad enough.
And I'd still have to shower with other guys. My face grew hot, having nothing to do with the heat of the day. I wiped my sweaty palms on my shorts. Sighing, I stared at the brightness of the sun against my closed lids and tried to regain the peace of before. The cicada's tone changed but continued its incessant buzz, nudging me towards sleep. The afternoon spread out before me with absolutely nothing I needed to do. Perfect.
"Ready for some of that watermelon?" Michael asked after a moment.
"Not yet," I murmured, stretching languidly, smelling the dry grass I crushed under my skinny body. "Think I'll take a nap first."
It surprised me when Michael didn't get up, his contented sigh warming my heart but also starting that little pang of loneliness again. I peered at him through my lashes. Small, dark haired, kind of plain looking, until he flashed that grin that made my heart jump and rush and me wanting to join whatever mischief he had concocted in that tricky brain of his.
As if he felt me looking, he turned his head. We stared at each other a long heartbeat, then against all expectation, he reached over and brushed his fingers against mine. Happiness came near choking me.
We'd been best friends forever. Maybe we could finally be something more.
And then that grin I lived for sprang on Michael's pixy face. "Hey, want to sneak into that new film?
"It's rated 'R'. We'd get caught."
"Nope! I know for a fact they keep the back door propped open a bit for fresh air in the summertime. My brother worked there last year and told me. They'd never know we were there."
I nodded, my heart singing. Things might change when school started, but at this moment I had the rest of summer before me with Michael to share it with.
Pic by One Good Eye Photography
Dianne is the author of m/m erotic romance, both contemporary and fantasy, the psychological thriller, and anything else that comes to mind. Oh, and a floral designer. If she can’t be writing, at least she has the chance to create through the rich colors and textures of flowers and foliage to bring a smile to someone's face. Currently, Dianne lives in the Willamette Valley of Oregon with her incredibly patient husband, who puts up with the endless hours she spends hunched over the keyboard letting her characters play.