Out on a Limb


"So, he got you back inside?"

"After he cornered me and made me tell him what was wrong with me. I told him, Jose. I told him I'm gay and that I like him. I told him because he wouldn't let me come in otherwise." I sniffed again, willing myself not to cry again.

"That bastard!"

I shook my head. "When we did get be back inside, he just left. Didn't say a thing, he just left." I turned watery eyes to Jose. "Let me stay here for awhile, please. I can't face him, not right now."

"Of course, Baby! Don't you give it another thought. It will be like a slumber party, okay?"

"Okay," I gave a weak laugh.

That night I did nothing more than curl up on the empty top bunk and stare at nothing. Jose talked none stop about nothing important, occasionally sending me sympathetic looks. Near three in the morning, I was looking out the window at the courtyard bellow, wrapped in my blanket at the desk and listening to Jose snort in his sleep when someone began pounding on the door. Jose gave one great snort and sat up in bed to look over at me. I shrugged my shoulders and looked back at the door. Jose jumped up and ran over to the door, pulling his night shirt farther down his thighs. "Who es it?"

"Open the door, Jose," Derek's commanding voice shot through the wood barrier.

I jumped up from my chair, dislodging a sleeping Boots who complained an hid under the bed. I was half tempted to follow him but was afraid I wouldn't fit.

"Don't you know what time it es?"

"I said open the door, Jose."

"I em trying to sleep in here. Now shush or you will wake up Tim."

"I just saw Tim getting cozy with Peter Shanks out in the entertainment room, so your story is blown there."

Now, me? I would have known this was a ploy to open the door, but my poor misguided Jose suddenly forgot about protecting me and thought about how his boy toy was playing with someone else. Throwing open the door, a very displeased Jose poked his head out into the hall. "What? Where es he? I will scratch his eyes out."

"Thank you," Derek said as he stepped into the room and closed Jose out into the hall. With a resounding click, he locked the door.

My heart dropped to my feet.

Jose started pounding on the door, demanding to be let in saying what a dirty trick that was. Derek ignored him. The dim light from the window reflected off of his eyes, giving them an unholy light.

This was it, I was sure. He was going to kill me or yell at me or hit me or something equally displeasure able. Leaning against the desk, I tried to look casual all wrapped up in my blanket, my bare feet kicking at the carpet. Not an easy task, but I like to think that I pulled it off. "What do you want?"

"I want to talk to you. I waited for you back at the room, but it didn't take me long to figure out you had turned tail and left."

The accusation stung, but it was true. I fled like a scared little kid. "I don't want to talk."

"Well," Derek said as he sat down on Jose's bed. "Good thing I didn't ask, huh?"

I scooted over to the far wall which was only about five paces away, but I figured if I could manage it, I could break for the door eventually.

"First of all, screw you for thinking I wouldn't be your friend if I knew you were gay."

The venom in his voice made me flinch. I glared at him. "It's a rather new thing for me and I didn't feel like advertising it."

"And after we were friends? What, you didn't trust me enough to tell me?"

"The last time I told someone I got my ass kicked, so sue me for being a little more cautious! Wouldn't that have just made the perfect dinner conversation?" I threw my blanket onto the chair, my hands waving around wildly. "Hey, Derek, I'm gay. Oh, and by the way, I've had the hots for you since I met you at the water park. Yeah, I could barely wait to tell you that!"

"It would have been nice if you had told me something rather than springing it on me like that!"

"Springing? It wasn't like I wanted to! You were holding me hostage up in that tree! You wouldn't let me come inside! You made me tell you," I ranted. How dare he put all the blame on me. I never would have told him if I hadn't gone out on that tree limb. This was Boots fault.

Derek rose from the bed, a soft laugh on his lips. "Yeah, maybe I did."

I scooted closer to the door, not watching him. "What was the second thing?"

"Second, that was a pretty nasty thing you did out there on the field, but," he raised his hands to hold me off as I opened my mouth to retort, slowly advancing on me. "I understand why you did it and that's okay, I guess. I don't like it much, though. You put me in a pretty tight situation back there."

"You know what, I don't care what kind of situation I put you in. I'm sure your smooth tongue got you out of it just fine." I turned and headed for the door. I was tired of this, I just wanted to go to bed. I'd definitely had enough stress for one day. "Why don't you just go back to your girlfriend and let yourself be roped into a loveless marriage that you'll regret within a month. I'm done."

I didn't get very far. Before I knew it I was back against the wall with Derek leaning his elbows on either side of my head so I had no where to go. Even as angry and hurt and tired as I would, I couldn't help but notice how close he was standing to me. We weren't quite touching, but we were oh-so-close.

His eyes bore into mine. "Maybe I don't want to go back to April. Maybe I'm not into a fake relationship with her anymore. Maybe I broke up with her down on the field, told her what you said was true. Maybe, just maybe I want something different."

I think the guys down the hall heard me gulp; the rapid bounding of my heart that was trying to jump right out of my chest. "What . . .err . . . what do you want?"

"Maybe I'm finding myself a little more into you than is right. When you were down there on the field picking a fight with April, I was strangely fascinated by you. And back there on the tree, I didn't know whether to hit you or . . ."


"Or kiss you," he said so softly, I almost missed it. Part of me wanted to believe it was my imagination playing tricks on me. This was Derek my roommate, the guy I'd had a crush on since he came to my rescue at the beginning of summer, the guy who's girlfriend was a complete limelight seeker, the STRAIGHT GUY!!!!! Surely, he could not have said what I think he had just said.

"I'm sorry, what?" Probably not the best thing I could have said at that moment, but I was really at a loss.

Derek just laughed softly, shaking his head. "Only you could have utter disbelief in your voice at a time like this."

"But your straight! You had a girl friend just a few hours ago that doesn't even resemble a guy in the slightest! You've never given Jose a twice over when he really dresses up, you've never tried to check a guy out as he's walking away, you don't even like fashion! I mean I don't either, but still! You are one of the straightest guys I know!"

He leaned in close and whispered in my ear, his breath just brushing my lobe making goose bumps breakout over my arms. "Even straight guys wonder if they really are straight."

Wasn't that the very thing that had set me on the path to discovering who I really was? The gay guy who had not yet actually gone out on a date with a guy because he was too nervous to let anyone know he was really gay? Even if he wasn't honest with anyone else, he was honest with himself to say he really liked to watch reruns of Baywatch and it wasn't because of Pamela Anderson. It had all started with a question, 'What if I'm not as straight as I think I am?'

When Derek pulled back to look at me, I know my mouth was hanging open. Not in invitation, mind you, but in shock! He apparently thought it was the first option. He leaned in and kissed me! I thought my knees where going to give away, but I had them locked just as tightly as every other part on my body. Oh, the conflicting emotions I was feeling right then. Shock, first and foremost, terror wondering if this was really real or was he just using me as some kind of self discovery experiment, and burning desire I couldn't deny even if I had to.

Derek leaned back and gave me what I could only describe as a shy smile, which looked so damned cute! "I wouldn't do this with anyone else. You have to know that Ethan. You're my friend and mean so much to me. I don't know when I'll have the courage for this again."

I knew then it was now or never. Even if I was an experiment on his part, I would regret it forever if I didn't have this moment with him. I couldn't speak, my voice having decided to desert me at this crucial moment, so I did the only thing I could to let him know how I felt. I leaned in and kissed him. It was a soft kiss barely containing the burning hunger I felt within me. He moaned low in his throat with desire and nearly undid me right there.

Even knowing I was gay and liked guys, I still had never actually kissed a guy yet. It was nice, so different from kissing a girl. Derek's lips were strong and demanding and I felt myself yielding to him.

One of his hands moved to cup my cheek, my own hands creeping up to grip the back of his neck holding him close to me. With a pull of his other hand, he began to lead me back to the bed. I didn't resist. It was like a fantasy come to life. It was everything I had wanted since I had realized I was gay just before summer. And now I was with the one guy besides Colin Farrell that I really wanted.

It wasn't long before he had me on my back on Jose's bed, moving restlessly under him, practically begging for him to take me. Wordlessly, we stripped each other, our eyes locked. No words were needed, not between us. I may have only known him for the last four months, but I felt as though I'd known him my entire life and everything about this moment was right. I didn't need to tell him to go slow, I didn't need to tell him I'd yet to be with a guy, I didn't need to tell him how badly I wanted him. He knew it all, I could see it in his eyes. In their murky depths, I could see he was even more nervous than me and that made me feel so good.

When at last we lay together with nothing between us, Jose's K-Y in my hand that I'd found in his desk moments before, he looked at me, his bottom lip between his teeth. "You, uh, you're sure about this?"

I grabbed his throbbing member in my hand and grinned at him. "Don't tell me you want to back out of this now?"

He groaned with pleasure. "No. I just, I wanted to give you a chance to, you know, if you weren't sure about it."

I leaned up and kissed him deeply. It was so sweet that he was thinking about me, not wanting me to regret what we were about to do. I wanted to jump him right then. "You're sweet, but no, I definitely don't want to back out."

"Okay." He watched me with fascinated eyes as I pored the lubricant out onto my hand and warmed it up. Gently, I rubbed it onto him, delighting when he moaned out my name.

Leaning up, I whispered into his ear, "Take me, Derek."

Not waiting further, he pushed into me, just his head. The pain was abrupt and fierce, making me gasp. He didn't move, waiting for my body to adjust to him. It hurt, but I could tell that the pain was fading fast, only to be replaced with one of the most curious sensations I've ever felt. When I nodded I was okay, he began to push into me farther. I felt so full and so beautiful wrapped in his arms. Then came the pleasure.

I began to buck back against him as he began to move, He kissed my collar bone, nipped at my neck, making me cry out in delirious delight. Sweat beaded out on our bodies, but still we held tight to one and other. In the throes of passion, we came together, falling from the heavens back down on to Jose's bed.

He fell asleep in my arms. I simply laid there, holding him to me as I watched the sun rise out the window. Even if he wanted nothing more to do with me for the rest of my life, I would always have this moment to cherish close to my heart.

Somewhere around noon, we both awoke to furious pounding on the door. Derek jumped up and threw his pants on, while I wrapped Jose's blanket around my middle. For some strange reason, I could not find my pants. Strange.

Derek opened the door to an indignant Jose. "Well. Es about time you let me back into my own room, you brute. Look what I had to go around campus in! Just look at me! I had to sleep in your room, and borrow your clothing. I look like a disgrace!"

I began to laugh as I really looked at Jose. He was dressed in one of Derek's extra football jerseys, which was belted around the waist, and a pair of my skinny jeans. I couldn't remember the last time he had looked so much like a guy. "You look good, Jose."

"Don't you get started on me, girl. I will scratch your eyes out, you-" Jose looked at the blanket around my waist and the blushing Derek who was leaning casually against the wall next to the still open door. "Oh, girl, you have to tell me everything! You look like you were ridden all night long and enjoyed every minute of it. Mmm!"

"Jose!" I'm fairly certain my face had turned a red somewhat similar to that of a ripe tomato, my eyes doubling in size. Did Jose have no shame? No, not really.

Derek laughed and moved over to me, encircling me in his arms. He wasn't making this situation any better, let me tell you. "Would you stop badgering my boyfriend, please?"

"Oh, honey, really?" Jose asked with excitement, clapping his hands in front of him.

I looked up at Derek in shock, still trying to keep the blanket around my waist. "Really?"

Derek leaned down and kissed my nose. "Yeah, really. If your game for it, that is."

"Of course, he's game, honey! What do you think he's been waiting for all this time? A beer buddy?" Jose asked, hands on hips, eyebrow expertly raised.

Seeing the look in Derek's eyes, I couldn't help but smile. "Yeah, I'm game."

And that was how I found the love of my life. College goes pretty smoothly when you are in love and dating the Captain of the football team, let me tell you. Maybe the Fates weren't laughing at me. Maybe they were telling me to stop being so afraid of what others thought and to just take a chance? Who knows?

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