Spin the Bottle

by Kanaye

 

I hated this. I knew I shouldn’t have agreed to this. Spin the Bottle for Seven Minutes in Heaven. Everyone knows I'm gay but somehow Theresa managed to talk three other guys, besides me, into playing. I stared at the bottle pointing at Dillon Thompson. The girls were giggling but I was rooted to the spot. I had spun it.

Maybe I should start from the beginning. Well, maybe not the beginning. I'm sure you don’t want to know how good of a baby I was and how my Mom died, so let’s start 5 months ago at the beginning of 10th grade, when I came out.

Most of the kids didn’t care or were ok with it and a few weren’t. I didn’t get pushed around, spit on or beat up, being bigger than most everyone else but I did get made fun of sometimes. Even that dwindled when I threatened to hit the main culprit.

I'm not the stereotypical gay guy. I'm not flamboyantly out nor am I shy and cowering. I'm just… normal. Sure, I do get shy sometimes but that’s usually when one of the cheerleaders grab my ass. Theresa, my best friend, is the head cheerleader and constantly asks me to join the Squad.

“Come on, Teresa.” I always say. “How can I play basketball and cheer for myself at the same time?”

“Well, Gabe, you could always quit. We like you better than the guys on the team do.”

It’s the same conversation, over and over again. While it is true a few guys on the team and I don’t get along, it’s not everybody. Plus, I always felt I had to do something to make my Dad proud of me. When I came out, he didn’t rant, hit me or throw me out of the house. He simply said it was fine, that it didn’t matter to him but I always felt like I disappointed him.

Dad had played basketball all through high school and most of college so when I saw the sign-up sheet for try-outs two weeks after I told him, I had to put my name down.

“Gabe, what are you doing?” Theresa asked when saw me writing my name down. “Do you even know how to play basketball?”

I rolled my eyes at her. She knew my Dad and I played at least once a week. “You know I do! Me and my Dad-

She cut me off. “I know but this would be real basketball. With real rules. You can’t just say ‘Do over’ and have the score fixed.”

I laughed. “I haven’t done that since I was 10.”

She looked at me.

“Ok, fine. 12.” I admitted. “But I want to play. For my Dad, you know.”

She got this ‘I’m so sorry’ look on her face. “I know, sweetie. But…” she looked at her feet before continuing. “You’re out. If you try for the team, the coach isn’t going to put you on it and even if he does... The other guys are going to flip, want you off. You’ll get made fun of, hit, and probably sabotaged on the court.” She looked back at me. “I don’t want you to get hurt.”

I shrugged. “If the coach doesn’t put me on the team, at least I can tell my Dad, I tried. If I do make it, and that stuff happens…” I sighed and hugged her. “I’ll deal with it then.”

I'm tall, 6’3”, and when I tried out the coach loved me. I had lots of practice playing with my Dad and when I made a three-pointer, I knew I was on the team. After he told everyone who had made it and who didn’t, the coach pulled me aside.

“I know you’re out.” He said. “I won’t tolerate any funny business on my team.” I was getting mad but he continued. “From you or them. If I find out they are harassing you, I’ll throw them off the team but if I find you hitting on them, I’ll throw you off.” He nodded at me and let me go. I was surprised. Oh, I knew he was going to talk to me about trying to get it on with the team but I didn’t expect him to be fair about them not being allowed to harass me either.

Like I said, most of the team is ok with me, even in the locker room. At first I was showering as fast as I could and dressing in the bathroom stalls but after the first month or so of practice was confronted by 3 of the guys.

“Hi Gabe.” Shawn, only in a towel, stepped right in front of me, blocking my way to the stalls. When two of the other guys joined him, I got worried.

“Uh, hi Shawn, Dillon, Kevin. I'm gunna get dressed.” I was looking at the floor the entire time and only looked up when Shawn put his hands on my shoulders to keep me from moving around them.

“Look, Gabe. We, the guys and I, don’t care if you are gay.” I looked at him, then the other two, who nodded.

“Okay… thanks.” I tried to get by him again but he didn’t move his hands and when I looked back at him he went on.

“You make us feel uncomfortable. Always darting around with your head down. We aren’t bad guys but you make us feel like we are.”

“Yeah.” This was Kevin. “Today you almost slipped cause Dillon walked by you in the shower.” I blushed but he ignored me. “If you keep being all nervous you’re gunna get hurt and we’re gunna feel guilty about. Not to mention what Coach will do to us.”

“We don’t care if you look.” I looked at Dillon, surprised at this announcement. “We all look sometimes.” He blushed, but didn’t stop talking. “Take your time in the showers. Get dressed by the lockers. You’re one of the team. Act like it.”

At this Shawn turned me around and led me to my locker. “Get dressed.” He said then walked towards his own locker.

I was nervous, dressing in front of everyone the first time but soon it became natural. I even got used to getting my butt ‘towel whipped’. The first time I retaliated, snapping my own towel at Kevin, everyone froze for a minute before Kevin started laughing. I was scared for that minute but everything went fine.

Now, with things going so well with the team, I had to kiss Dillon. In the closet for 7 minutes. After a minute or so of staring, I grabbed the bottle. “I’ll just spin again.”

“Nope. Theresa grabbed the bottle from me. “Remember the rules.”

“Dammit.” I looked at Dillon, who was blushing. “Dillon, I-

He cut me off. “Come on man. I mean, it’s just a game, right? I promise I won’t hold it against you on the court. Plus, like Theresa said, remember the rules. No spinning again, you have to kiss and, most important, no one can tell anyone who kissed who.”

He stood up and grabbed my hand, pulling me up. “Get ready to start the timer, Marissa,” he told the cheerleader in charge of setting the alarm for 7 minutes. She nodded. “Have fun guys.” She started giggling again.

Shaking my head, I followed Dillon into the cramped laundry closet. As soon as he closed the door, I pecked him quickly on the lips and whispered, “There, I kissed you. Now we can just wait until-

Once again Dillon cut me off but this time with his lips on mine. I quickly pushed him away. “What are you doing?” I hissed, trying to be quiet.

Dillon looked at me oddly. “I thought you would be ok with me kissing you.”

“I don’t want trouble with the team and certainly not with Coach. If he found out-

“But you’re not hitting on me, I'm hitting on you.”

“What? Why would you hit on me? Are you…?” I trailed off, expecting him to cut me off again but he just blushed and looked at his feet.

“Ive like you since 7th grade.” He said, so quietly I almost missed it. “When you came out and then joined the team, I was so happy. I thought I’d have a chance to… you know.” I saw his face turn red again. “There’s never been an opportunity for me to tell you so I asked the other guys if they wanted to join in the cheerleaders “Spin the Bottle for Seven Minutes in Heaven” game and they agreed. I was worried you would land on them instead of me.” He grabbed the back of my head and started kissing me again.

“Wait” I pushed him away again. “Is this a trick?”

“A trick?” He looked mad. “A trick? Here,” He grabbed my hand and placed it on his fly. “Does that feel like a trick to you?”

Surprised, I snatched my hand away from his boner. “Uh, I guess not.”

I was shocked. I had studied, through quick glances, every player on the team and I never noticed Dillon looking back. I mentioned this and he sighed, his anger fading.

“I'm not as brave as you. Coming out would not be good for me but…” He swept his hand through his hair and looked at me again. “Do you think we could have something? Maybe?”

I looked at him, really looked at him. I took in his black hair, tousled from his hands running through it, his sincere blue eyes, the way he worried his lip with his teeth and smiled.

“Maybe.” I answered as I bent my head and gave him a full blown French kiss. I was soon lost in exploring Dillon mouth. Apparently Dillon lost himself as well cause next thing we knew the door was pulled open and Marissa was gaping at us.

We pulled apart a bit guiltily. “Times up?” Dillon asked her hoarsely. He cleared his throat and tried again. “Times up?”

“Uh, yeah.” She continued to gape at us.

We just smiled, walked past her, and sat at our original seats. Theresa looked back and forth at us. “We expected you guys to come right out as soon as the alarm went off. Marissa waited a full minute afore opening the door. What were you guys doing in there?”

I looked across the circle at Dillon. “Just playing the game, right Dillon?”

He smiled back at me. “Right. Just playing the game.” And we both burst out laughing.



The End

 

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