I like-like a boy now.
Its been so long that I didn’t even notice for a while.
It was like 8pm at night and I was sitting in theatre rehearsal and I was like “Jeez. This is the fifth time I’ve thought about this guy all day. Usually I only think this much about fandom. What the fuck is going on.”
Then I was like “Wait. Think about what would happen if he let you hold his hand.” and then I had to control my smiling lest people think I’m some kind of mad-person/freak as I sit there grinning and no one has said anything at all to me.
And then I realized that this is what having a crush is like.
I haven’t had a legit crush on someone in over 6 years. Usually I just sleep with people or date them because I can. Or see someone I like and just snatch them up and wring them dry.
But now my face gets all hot and my heart skips beats and I’m all types of awkward acting and I JUST WANT IT TO STOP.
He was a God in the guise of a boy. He played with the others like anyone else. Pulled on jeans and sneakers. Made out with girls behind the bleachers. And wrote essays about American history. He could have chosen any time, but he relished this one in particular. It was the chaos that did it. The discord. The moans of agony, disappointment and confusion were so many and so lush it turned him on. “Ah, the 21st century,” he said, with arms spread wide. “Who knew I could be so brilliant.”
I asked him what he had nightmares about, and the first thing he said was “Not being friends with you anymore.”
He said he dreamed we had fights, terrible fights and that we weren’t friends, and then he woke up and he was like ” Fuck that.”
What a sweet kid.
He literally has no idea how touching that is to hear.
You are, quite simply, the finest thing I’ve ever seen.
I think I might like him.
and it feels fucking weird.
I just want to go to sleep next to him and wake up next to him and see his brown eyes in the sun.
Not sure what to do with this one, really.
Hopefully, it will pass.
The tale of one of the most fascinating boys I’ve ever known
Andy and Edie
I met Nicholas the second week of my first year of high school.
Things are peculiar during the beginning of high school. Social constructs are not yet erected. Everyone scrambles for friends. It’s terrifying, yet I’ve never seen a more even ground. No one knows who the weird kids are yet. There’s no bullying. There’s no popular crowd. Everyone speaks to everyone equally, as we have not yet decided who we like the best. That, and we wouldn’t want to get on the wrong side of anyone who might turn out to be advantageous to be friends with.
I had arrived there with a middle school classmate so, unlike everyone else, I already had someone to cling to in those first moments of uncertainty. Rachel was a social goddess, she never wanted for friends. I sort of just trailed behind her happily. I was in no particular hurry to join her clique or go off on my own in the hunt for companionship.
I’m only mentioning her because she’s the one who introduced us. Nick and me.
It’s surprising that I didn’t notice him before we were properly introduced. Nicholas is rather hard to miss.
Nicholas looked like a martyr. He was a stick thin ragdoll of self destruction, his striking face smeared in gritty makeup. Nick was tall and thin, sinister yet vulnerable, magnetic but distant. His eyes were tired and wise. It was almost like he was surrounded by violent electromagnetic static; something we were all instantly aware of once we step into its path. Women and men looked at him and lusted after him, and I understood why. He was slinky, his lankiness bringing him an unnatural grace. Where we would amble, he sauntered, where we wandered, he’s stride. It was effortless. Everywhere he went, crowds of women followed, twittering like birds, lunging for his heart despite his insistence that he preferred men.
Girls like me scoffed at girls like them.
Before you wonder, I wasn’t in love with him, I didn’t fall in love with him, and I’m not in love with him now. Nicholas is one of those men who is surrounded by warning. And unlike many other women, I actually heed it.
Our first encounter was unnerving. He happened to be a part of a large group of people who were heading towards the train station, on our way home after a long day of school. It was rush hour and there was hardly any room between business people and other older students. I was in a rush to keep up with my friend Rachel as she slipped between the train doors. We pushed our way through the crowd heading towards the last car.
We were almost through the third to last car when a hand grasped my forearm. I called to Rachel to wait up, but she couldn’t hear me over the other passengers and pushed onward without me.
I looked at the offending hand in confusion.
I followed the thin wrist up to thin arms, wide shoulders and the very determined face of a gloriously drunken Nicholas White. I didn’t know him yet, so I was a bit more than startled.
“ I know you.” He deadpanned.
I stared at him.
I get this often. I must have one of those faces that people find familiar.
It has been happening to me for as long as I can remember. Strangers claiming we’ve met when I’ve never seen them before. I was fully prepared to launch into a tirade of denial when he cocked his head to the side and said:
“ You’re Rachel’s friend, right?”
The train was getting more and more packed the further we went and I was forced closer to him as a particularly large man shoved himself behind me.
He smiled. Nick had blonde hair, it was straight and messy, hanging lank over his bloodshot, kohl rimmed eyes. He looked me over in cautious contemplation as I introduced myself nervously, not relinquishing my wrist from his grasp. He fingered the many bangles I was wearing, then leaned against the support beam.
“ I’m sorry we’re meeting like this. I’m pretty smashed.” He laughed lightly and tossed his hair out of his eyes. “ Forgive me if I don’t remember this later.”
Babbling incoherently at this point, I assured him that it was fine.
He rubbed my wrist softly with his thumb, then lightly clasped my hand in his.
“ You know what’s lovely about the first weeks of school?” He murmured “ The freedom. It’s absolutely priceless. You can meet people and say whatever you want and do whatever you want and no one will judge you because they’re too busy watching themselves. Making sure they give a good first impression. Its silly really. From this point we could become best friends, or we could step off this train and never speak to each other again.”
I told him that I didn’t think that was true, but I knew he was right. I think at the time I was just surprised he was even talking to me.
Nicholas let go of my wrist and leaned against the wall of the train, closing his eyes. His bag roughly smacked the woman on the seat next to him when he moved and she turned around angrily as if to say something to him about it. Her face softened when she looked at him and she bit back her retort. He had that effect on people.
I turned back to him to comment on what he had said, but he had fallen asleep. We rode the train home in silence.
More recently, I asked him if he remembered when we spoke that time and he, embarrassed, said he didn’t. Nick’s drinking problem cut into much of his early high school years, so He doesn’t have much recollection of anything that happened then.
Since he didn’t recall our first meeting, it seemed necessary for him that we have a second.
By the time he gathered the courage to speak to me again, two years had passed and I’d almost forgotten him.
*Names Unchanged, so be gentle with this one.