Chapter 9

"Boyfriend Part 2"

Usually, he'd be reading, studying, whatever else good boys do. But Bobby couldn't concentrate. In his particularly neat script, in what started as Calculus homework, turned into a write out of every silly thought that crossed his mind. His silly thoughts usually revolved around Zackery. Which is fine…. but… still…

'Mr. and Mr. Zackery Fishborune.' Bobby blushed. Two guys getting married. It's such a crazy thing. It doesn't have the same ring to it as Mr. and Mrs. Who'd go down the aisle at the wedding? The shorter one? Bobby didn't know how it worked. He needed a formula, there had to be a system to follow or else…

'Mr. and Mrs. Zackery Fishbourne' He bit his lip. 'The Fishborunes.'

'Bobby Fishborune' The black haired boy flushed. "I'll be the Mrs." He whispered to himself. 'Mrs. Bobby Dean Fisbourne.'

"Oh god..!" His cheeks burned. This was so embarrassing but he couldn't stop himself. He definitely wasn't going to going to marry Zack anyway. What happened to being satisfied just being his friend? In the end, someone can't force themselves to feel less huh? And the feels he has for Zack, well, have been going on like an overactive volcano.

Bobby groaned again before rolling over and falling off the bed entirely. He hit the ground with a loud thud. Bobby didn't' move, instead he lied still and let himself think. He needed other things to do and think about that had nothing to do with Zack.

"Impossible," Bobby sighed to himself.

"What's impossible?" asked a voice above him. Bobby rolled over to his back to see his mother standing over him. She shook her head. "Bobby, the floor isn't for sleep."

Bobby and looked up at his mother. The urge to pout was stronger than him and he made a face his mother had never seen before.

"What's wrong?" She asked. She blamed puberty for her son's sudden dive into the strange and unusual. Bobby is already sixteen now though, she'd silently hoped Bobby would go onto his adult years as rational as she tried to raise him.

"I can't tell you…" Not ever. His lips were sealed.

"OK, then we'll call your father and you can talk to him." She turned on her heel but Bobby's yelp stopped her from going on.

She looked over her shoulder. Bobby was trying to compost himself, standing straight, but held sad eyes. Elaine couldn't guess what was on his mind. What do teenagers go through? Classes, social anxieties, sexual revelations… oh boy. It could be anything under the stars.

"Please…" Bobby sighed. "I don't want to talk to dad. I'm on the floor because I want to be."


Bobby sat on the bed. "You and dad… always liked each other?"

There was a pause. Elaine let it sink in that her only boy was in love. "Actually, I didn't like him at all when we first met in college." She sat next to Bobby. "We shared one biology class and he thought he was the smartest guy in the world. He was full of it really." She laughed. It was the most honest version of how she met George.

"He was just so annoying to me. I would tell him so. And he would call me dumb."

Bobby gasped. This wasn't the frilly image of his parents meeting that he imagined. Love at first sight. Some fluffy serendipity moment that whisked them off to a magical life ending with a bouncing baby boy. It was then that Bobby discovered he was a hopeless romantic.

Elaine laughed at Bobby's reaction. "Just before graduation, I ran into him at the train. I was reading a book on veganism and he decided to give me an earful about it. I called him an asshole and had a smack down of a debate on it." She shook her head. "Arguing with him made me late for class. And I yelled at him for that too. But I won that little spat, he hasn't touched meat since. It took him months to convince me to go out with him."

"And then?" Bobby asked. He obviously knew how it ended. His parents loved each other and showed it quite often. Even to the point where it got uncomfortable.

"Then we went out, debated some more. Then it suddenly wasn't a just a debate and we talked about things that made us happy and laughed for hours…"

Bobby smiled a little. "Glad to see things worked out."

"Of course we still have to work through a lot. Being married isn't easy." With that, she stands. "I think you'll be fine Bobby."

Bobby hoped so. And really, it's either Zack magically became gay or he meets another boy who could actually love him back the same way.

"Hey shorty!" Zack throws himself against the locker beside Bobby's with a big smile. Bobby looks up and smiles back but his voice is lost for a moment. Zack continues, "Alli wants to do a thing so you have to come with me."

Bobby quietly closed his locker door. "A thing?"

As they moved to walk down the hall, Zack put his arm around Bobby's shoulder and gave it a shake. Was Zack always so chummy? Bobby didn't get it and Zack felt so natural with Bobby that he didn't notice.

"Alli wants us to hang out with Cory." There was a beat of silence before Zack spoke again, "She really likes him, you know? I think relaxing and just getting to know him will make me less paranoid."

"I'm sure it will." Bobby mumbled, "I don't see why I have to go though."

Zack stopped, forcing Bobby to stop mid step with him. "Because you crept around with me that day! Besides, I don't really want to go either. I can share my misery with you." Zack laughed and the sound of it was so beautiful to Bobby's ears. How could he refuse?

Bobby gave a short nod. "Great!" Zack ruffled the head of black hair. "See ya, little guy!" and he was off to his next class. It was useless now but Bobby called after him anyway.

"I'm not little!" His heart shaped face turned beet red. He ran his fingers through his hair. He tried to smooth it out. But without a comb handy he couldn't change what Zack had done to him, he couldn't fake it, he was totally dismantled, inside and out.

When Bobby reached his biology class, he put on his lab coat and sat at a table. The teacher was late. As he waited, along with the rest of the class, he couldn't help but hear the mumbling of some girls across the room. Bobby tried to tune it out but it was obvious that they were talking about him.

Finally, one of the girls got up and walked right over to him. She had a clear brown face with lip gloss on. Her curly hair was tied up in a bun and she was only a little taller than him. Not threatening but girls were dangerous in their own right. He could only imagine what his own mother was like at his age.

"Hi." She greeted him with a smile.


She slides into the seat near him. "So, I'm asking for a friend. We noticed you hanging around Zack a lot, and she wanted to know if he was single or not."

"Uh… um… he's single… yes." Zack was free and single. One day he really will meet someone. Maybe it'll be this cute black girl in front of him. Maybe it'll be one of her giggling friends behind her. Either way, it wasn't going to be him.

"OK, that's good. So you guys are best friends or something?"

Best friends? Yes, they were best friends. Zack said so himself. Bobby finally smiled, the sight of it pleasantly surprising the girl. "Yeah, we are."

"So you can introduce my friend to him one day?"

His smile dimmed. "Sure, whenever you want."

"Great! See ya later!"

She scurried back to her table to tell the news to her friends. They continued to talk and laugh until the teacher finally arrived.

They were going to the movies and have lunch after. Bobby wore his school uniform every day at school and realized that afternoon, that he didn't own what other people could consider "casual." So he put on his favorite bow tie and waited outside for Zack to show up in his car.

He was nervous.

When Zack finally showed up, he was stunned by the shorter boy. "Hey," Zack said, he felt himself smiling too eagerly but couldn't bring himself to tone it down.

"H-Hi." Bobby had a stiff upper lip. Zack laughed out loud. "What is it?!" Bobby bit his lip.

Zack walked up to Bobby and adjusted his bow tie. Was Bobby cute? The answer was yes. Was Bobby even cuter in a bow tie? Zack had never known such an adorable thing can exist in this world.

"You look nice. Pretty formal don't you think?" Bobby's hair is the neatest Zack had ever seen it. He had to fight the urge to throw both of his hands in Bobby's hair.

"I didn't really have anything else to wear."

Zack shrugged. "It's cool. Ready to go?"

Cory picked a horror movie. Alli, pretty as a picture and totally focused on her boyfriend, hadn't cared what movie they would watch. Zack was indifferent and Bobby was the least excited.

His brain liked things that made sense. He was never afraid of things science could map out. Werewolves? Didn't exist. Vampires? Puh-leez! Zombies? Don't get him started. But he hated watching people get hacked to pieces by crazed murderers. The struggle, the screaming, blood and guts flying from their bodies. He hated the gore of it all.

How anyone could have fun watching scary movies, Bobby couldn't figure out, he'd rather watch action movies. He looked over to Zack. 'Or maybe something romantic.' Bobby thought pitifully.

Zack could see how much Alli liked Cory. She hung all over him. However, something about Cory's smirk didn't sit well with him. He could never tell Alli now though, after trying and failing to catch him in the act of something deceitful. Hating Cory wasn't worth Alli being pissed at him. Zack tried to think positive. This whole night is for them to get to know each other.

"I was thinking of calling it "Justify Me" or "Justifiable Homicide" and having a sweet cover made by my buddy Brad. You remember Brad right?" Cory went on about his self-made mixtape. "I want it to look really slick."

Bobby, listening carefully, found holes in Cory's ramblings. "Why homicide? Why is the theme "just?"

Cory didn't hesitate to answer. "My middle name is Justin."

Zack wanted to laugh at that. Cory Justin Diamond. Who thought of that?

"Why not "Just Cuz'" or "Just in Case?" Zack laughed out loud this time as he threw an arm around Bobby's shoulders. Cory caught the moment and frowned a bit. Alli stood next to him and he took her hand. Alli blushed. Even though she didn't like Cory's music, and he was definitely a dork about it, Cory was sweet and good looking. That's all she needed.

Bobby nodded. "Or "and Justice for all" or similar..."

"None of those sound as cool as mine."

In the Theatre bathroom, Bobby splashed some cool water on his face. It was hard to be normal when Zack kept leaning over to whisper in his ear about the movie. Why did boys like Zack have to exist? Bobby sighed. He would pull all of his effort to get through this time of his life. Definitely.

"Hey." Bobby turned around to see Cory. He was smiling as he took up Bobby's personal space.

"Um, hi?"

Cory blinked and then laughed. Bobby had something special about him. It was undeniable. "We should hang out sometime."

"Are you…?" Bobby didn't' want to ask. Not really. It seemed like even a minute alone with Alli's boyfriend threw him into confused state of mind.

"Bi-sexual? Yes. And you're gay, which is cool. I have a lot of gay friends."

Bobby glared at Cory. He hated that there was a person who instantly could tell he was gay. But much, much worse than that, his gut feeling was confirmed too. Cory is a creep.

"I don't like you for my friend." If he could protect Alli from wasting any more time with Corry, he'd be happier. Bobby's never had a boyfriend, but he understood what a cheater was.

"Hey, hey," Cory took a step back. "It doesn't have to be anything serious. I'll give you my number and we can talk about our first times." Cory laughed. Bobby turned red. He was fuming. How did such a disgusting guy manage to charm Alli?

"What's wrong with you? What's stopping me from telling Alli how nasty you are?"

Cory shrugged. "I know, at least for now, you want to stay in the closet. Just hang out with me one day. I promise to play nice." Bobby had a special brand attractiveness that was hard not to chase after. Cory didn't think of himself has a bad guy but why hold back?

Cory knew he had the upper hand, as far as keeping this secret anyway. Bobby thought hard before nodding.

Cory blinked. "What? Really? No funny business either?"

"You don't deserve Alli. She'll see through you eventually."

"It's not like we're sleeping together. It's no big deal if we hang out."

"I might be gay, but that doesn't make me automatically attracted to you."

"Hm." Cory thought for a moment. "All I wanted was to be cool."

"If you want to be cool then be cool," his voice dropped to a whisper. "Don't do this."

"Ok, ok. I'll be good."

"Promise?" Bobby gave him a skeptical look. In a perfect world, he wouldn't have to ask Cory to behave.

Cory and Bobby got back to the movie later. Bobby struggled until the very end to keep himself from turning into goo every time Zack leaned right into his face to mumble something about the plot. It would be so easy to just turn a little to his left and lets their lips touch. So easy.

It wouldn't. Obviously. Bobby pinched the bridge of his nose. He has to try harder at this.

The drive home was a quiet one. Zack noticed how much more withdrawn had been after the movie than before. Zack hated when Bobby was like this. It's only during times like this that Zack feels overwhelmingly insecure. Zack isn't good with seeing things that he should notice. Alli had to stuff that into his brain but he got it now, he's not super observant, maybe he's even on the dumb side, but he still cared.

What should he do now? Small talk?

"Oh, uh. Cory turned out to be an ok guy."

Bobby turned to Zack. He had to say something. "He seems ok, but what if he wasn't?"

Zack stopped the car at a red light. "What do you mean?"

"I don't think Cory is a good person."

The light turned green but Zack hadn't moved yet. "I freaking knew it!" Zack punched the air. This reaction made Bobby flinch.

"You believe me?"

"Of course I do. Why wouldn't I?"

Bobby hesitated to answer. "…Because I doubted you before."

"Yeah, but so what? I still believe in you."

Bobby nodded. He was negative. Was he always like this? Zack mastered this thing that Bobby couldn't put his faith into. He was scared over everything. He doesn't mean to be though.

"Bobby?" The car still hadn't moved. Bobby looked up at him. It was dark out, Zack couldn't make out Bobby's face, but if he had, his heart would have fallen out of his body. Bobby's eyes were full of new love for Zack. It would have given it away.

"I have an idea about Cory. It requires some deceit though…"

"Deceit? Is Average Joe Smith and his partner Bob going to make a reappearance?"

Bobby laughed. "No!"

"Damn it, Bobby." Zack laughed. He started the car up again and zoomed through the streets.

Bobby considered what will happen once his plan goes through. He didn't want to break Alli's heart. He would give Cory a fair opportunity to check himself. He hoped things turned out ok.