Have you ever had the spotlight make you the shining star of the stage? Or have you ever had paparazzi flash their cameras at you while posing on the red carpet, worshipping your every bow, breath, and blink and wanting your attention for the lens of their cameras?
Well, Donatello Maguire was definitely shining, shining with sweat as he walked through the hallways of his high school while holding the hand of his boyfriend. And lights were definitely pointing at him, more specifically laser crosshairs from everyone's eyes, warning him to stay away from them like he was a rabid bear, which was ironic because Don was light-years from being a bear in both meanings of the word.
Not everyone was against him, but every disapproving and disgusted look he received was amplified tenfold versus people who showed either apathy or acceptance.
Don hated being the focus of everyone's attention. He was like an animal without its shell or armor, vulnerable to attacks from predators ready to sink their teeth and claws into him. The laughs and leers definitely stabbed at him, and it only deepened and twisted the longer he was exposed. He'd rather play dead, so his predators would lose interest and walk away, looking for new prey to taunt and tease.
However, after what he experienced on the top of a building in downtown Felicity, with firing weapons, an exploding helicopter, and a sadistic, whiplashing corporate man who was part of a secret, evil organization whose goal was to kidnap people with supernatural powers to enslave the human race, he thought the stares and shocks of his classmates would be less challenging. It was still a debilitating and draining experience in the beginning. Don sometimes wanted to hide under his bed sheets and wait for the smoke to clear before inhaling the clear air again. But whenever his hand shivered and his skin whitened, another hand connected their palms together, transmitting both warmth and color back into Don. And when he had trouble breathing, a pair of lips locked onto his, making his decision more strong and secure.
Danny was his name. The cocky, cool pot dealer who lived right across from Don's apartment unit since last year, assigned by Don's father to protect Don from the hands of the organization after his father rescued Danny from a laboratory controlled by the same people. And just recently Danny enrolled in Don's high school to protect him, not from the organization, but from all the pointing fingers and profane mouths of his peers.
Two weeks have passed since Don first held Danny's hand in public. The hurricane that occurred in the beginning dissipated. The air was cool and calm as they passed him in the hallways and settled in his class periods. However a tornado still loomed, threatening to become bigger, stronger, and cause more destruction in its path.
Don knocked on the front door of Danny's apartment unit, clutching the shoulder strap of his backpack that had the Superman symbol and was molded from the Man of Steel's ripped chest and stomach. In the beginning, he was embarrassed for having to carry the children's backpack during school since his other backpack was ruined. However, Danny loved Don's backpack, thinking it made him look "so fucking adorable."
"Come in," Danny called out.
Don opened the door and walked inside to see Danny eating a slice of pizza while watching television, wearing only his boxers. Don smiled at Danny's exposed athletic body, staring at the defined pelvic muscles and the hair under his navel. And the way his boxers hung low on his waist, he was total eye candy. Don wished he had a similar body that Danny could drool over.
"Hey, Don, do you want a slice?" Danny asked, leaning his hip against the arm of the couch.
"Sure, I didn't have breakfast yet," Don accepted, taking off his backpack and dropping it on the floor.
"Great." Danny set his pizza down on the couch cushion and gave Don a smirk. "Hurry, before it gets cold."
Don bowed his head and chuckled. He licked his lips and slowly walked to Danny with his head still down and his hands in his pockets. Don stopped in front of him and he felt Danny's fingers under his chin, lifting up his face. Don looked into his half-lidded eyes that were steaming with lust. He touched Don's face, his thumb brushing over his round, right eyebrow that had a slit at the arch from a scar he got when he was a child. Danny lightly chuckled and kissed Don firmly on the lips.
Don moaned and leaned into the kiss. Danny placed his warm hand onto Don's cheek and lightly bit and tugged his lower lip. Don's hands ventured from Danny's shoulders and down to the waistband of his boxers, feeling the hills and valleys of muscles underneath his palms. Danny licked Don's lips with the tip of his tongue before submerging it into his mouth. Don gasped and whimpered from the pleasure that hit him like a wave. Several strokes from Danny's tongue and Don tried to say something, but instead he gave into the pleasure and both of them collapsed onto the couch.
Danny unlocked their lips and laughed in the crook of Don's neck. "Never try to talk with your mouth full."
Don laughed, combing his fingers through Danny's short brown hair. "Yeah, coming from the guy who leaves his drink on the coffee table without a coaster."
Danny looked at the canned soda on the coffee table. "Guilty."
Don smiled and stood up onto the floor. "Well, Danny, if we're done, we have to go to school."
Danny stood up and grabbed the pizza from the plate. "All right, I'll get dressed now."
Don sat back down on the couch and watched a crappy reality show as he waited for Danny to get dressed. He fixed the soft, front spikes of his tapered, undercut hairstyle and adjusted the tightness of the jean fabric between his legs. Danny soon walked out of his bedroom, wearing a white shirt printed with a pencil sketching of a man's face, straight jeans, and high tops. He had his backpack hanging off of one shoulder and a device in his hand.
"Ready?" Don asked, turning off the television.
"Almost." Danny showed a device to Don that looked like a blood glucose tester. "Let me see your hand."
Don sighed and offered his hand. It was a small price to pay, less than a cent on the price tag, to be the boyfriend of Danny who was HIV positive. Don did a lot of research on the virus since they became boyfriends at the school library, and he learned that the virus did exist in saliva, but in extremely low concentrations. The risk of contracting the virus from kissing someone who was HIV positive was practically nonexistent. And that's all they did, but Danny always wanted to be certain.
The needle pricked Don's ring finger and Danny looked at the screen, and sighed with relief. "You're negative." He pulled out a bandage from his pocket and applied it on Don's finger. "All right, let's go."
"Wait. No lollipop." Don smirked.
Danny chuckled and held Don's hand, leading him out of the apartment and into the car.
Outside, Don was introduced to a surprisingly bright morning with a clear blue sky. Or it could have been the rainclouds that have disappeared over his head since Danny became a big part of his life. Not even a meteor shower could dampen, or destroy, Don's mood because at least he would be with Danny during the end of the world.
Don's high school had started undergoing maintenance since Blake inherited the ownership of the corporation that controlled the school after his father's death, for about five seconds. He sold the company and gave the schools under its control back to the government's hands. Students won't have to purchase the company's overpriced products and programs that assist special and disadvantaged students would return. The most significant change though was the teachers. The number of teachers would increase, including their salaries and their health and retirement benefits would return. However, since the majority of the teachers are inexperienced because they were trained by the company and were a cheaper alternative to certified instructors, they would have to undergo maintenance too by undergoing training by a legitimate institution. Things were going to become much better.
"We're getting new textbooks. Isn't that cool!" Wendy said, sitting on the middle of the wide set of stairs that led to the front entrance of the school with Don and Danny. "The new textbooks won't have anti-science, revised history, or corporate propaganda like the old ones," she pointed out with a smile.
"Yeah…that's real exciting," Danny drawled as he sat behind Don, massaging his shoulders.
Wendy rolled her eyes. "Anyways, Don have you completed your story for the Writers' Club tomorrow?"
"Yeah! I think this is one of my best," Don said proudly.
Have you ever questioned where superheroes get their abstract and astonishing outfits? Don's new story was about a man who worked in the business of making and repairing superhero outfits. After a boring and slow day, the tailor decided to try on one of the most famous superheroes outfit, and the unfortunate happened. The fabric suddenly became skintight and fused with his body, giving him superpowers of invisibility and multiplicity. He would have to spend his Saturday off trying to return the outfit back to its original owner behind his boss's back, fighting against a team of supervillains who have plotted an attack against the mayor, and using his new identity to kiss his high school crush while dodging annoying paparazzi and female fans. It was a very light-hearted story compared to the serious ones he wrote a couple weeks ago and it was proof that his mood has been improved greatly.
"I agree," Danny said, playfully shaking Don's shoulders.
"Hey Danny!" a guy called out.
"One of my customers. I'll be right back." Danny patted Don's head and stood up with his backpack that carried the merchandise.
Don watched Danny doing business, and then he saw Wendy was staring at him. "What?"
"I'm just noticing how happy you've been since Danny enrolled into this school. And let me get this straight. He dropped out after being expelled from his other school last year and now has enrolled here to finish school. Is that right?"
"Yeah." Don smiled, and then he said, "Do you like him?"
Wendy looked at Danny laughing with his customer. "If you like him, I like him. As long as he doesn't sell anything more than pot. It's just…"
"What's wrong, Wendy?" And then Don knew, noticing the same face she made when he first told her. "We're being safe, Wendy. You don't have to worry. We're not even having sex, and Danny insists on testing me every couple of days."
"That's good." Wendy smiled, and then her eyes widened at another direction. "Don't look, Don. It's…"
Don saw Yasmine walking to the stairs with her group of friends. The raincloud returned above his head, forming a tornado and destroying his elated mood. It was inevitable that Yasmine would discover Don's new boyfriend since news about two boys holding hands and kissing spread throughout the school like a virus. Yasmine still smiled and greeted Don at Bazaar Town, the food store that her father owned and where he worked as a cashier, but she would always disappear into the storage room or behind one of the aisle to restock or sweep. Don felt guilty about not notifying her about his sexual preference, but…no, there was no excuse for not telling her in the beginning and making her believe that they had a connection beyond a professional relationship.
Don sighed when Yasmine and her friends stopped at the front of the stairs and that was when Danny finished his deal and came back. He sat beside Don and kissed him on the neck just when the group of girls walked up onto the same level as them. Don gave a Yasmine a small wave and she gave a quick smile before facing forward with her friends giving amused looks to each other and Don.
Don sighed and rested his head on Danny's shoulder while grasping onto his hand. The fresh scent of fabric softener and the warmth emitting from his palm relaxed him and began clearing the clouds above his head when Kavi appeared into his sight. He was laughing with his two friends as they walked up the stairs. Kavi gave Don a nod and continued walking up the stairs and disappeared.
Ever since Cupid stomped on his bow and arrows in defeat, unable to make Don fall in love with Yasmine, Kavi took this opportunity to get closer to her and occupy her time she used to spend with Don at the store. Whatever got them to possibly have a romantic relationship was okay by him. He only wished she would start talking to him again since standing at the cash register and rereading old issues of Griffin was getting boring, and Don did not believe that would ever happen. And then he remembered.
"Oh, the homecoming dance is coming this Saturday. Wendy, are you going?" Don asked.
"Hell no. The ticket alone costs fifty bucks, and I don't even have a dress to wear which will cost even more. No, I'm saving my money for a Dorothy doll. But don't let me discourage you. All you need is a decent dress shirt, pants, shoes, and a tie which you can reuse for next year's dance. Lucky you."
Yeah, and I'm so poor that I don't even have that.
"Do you want to go, Don?" Danny asked.
"Maybe, but I don't have the money for the ticket. And I'm definitely not going alone." Don chuckled.
"What are you talking about?" Danny pulled out money from his backpack and placed it in Don's palm. "Your money's right there…and so is your date."
Don blushed. He looked at the money in his hand that totaled a hundred dollars. He hadn't held that amount of money he hadn't earned before. They were fresh off the press, clean, smooth and ready to be spent. He could not accept it. Besides, he still could not dance and did not have anything to wear that won't make him look like white trash.
"Danny, I can't."
"Yes you can because I'm asking you to the dance and that makes me obligated to purchase things like your ticket, and maybe dinner if you want." Danny rubbed Don's leg.
"Really?" Don placed his hand over Danny's.
"Yeah, I don't think I remember the last time I went to a school dance." Don chuckled, knowing Danny's dilemma.
"But I don't even know how to dance, Danny, or have anything presentable to wear."
"I'll teach you how to dance and you can borrow some of my clothes. I think you'll fit in them just fine. Do you have any other obstacles you want me to cross?" Danny leaned his elbow on his leg and raised an eyebrow. Don shook his head. "So…do you want to go to the homecoming dance with me?"
Don smiled. "Yes."
Danny placed a hand behind Don's head and kissed him. "Then it's a date."
The cafeteria was already crowded to the walls with loud and hungry students. Don, Danny, and Wendy sat down in their usual spot in the middle of the cafeteria with their trays of food. Unfortunately, even though things from the textbooks to the teachers would improve, the food still was overcooked and outdated since before Blake sold the company. What Don would do for a serving of Mrs. Gupta's butter chicken? Luckily for them, they received pepperoni pizza fresh out of the oven.
Through the mass of bodies, Don saw a more concentrated group of students getting tickets for the dance. "I'm going to get the tickets now, and don't touch my fries."
Danny quickly put his hand back under the table and looked up with innocence.
Don walked to the crowd with the money clutched tightly into his hands. As he waited, he suddenly saw Yasmine and her same group of friends walking toward him. He nervously rubbed the back of his neck and turned his body the other way.
"Hi, Don," Yasmine greeted and gave a small wave.
Don turned to face Yasmine. "H-Hi, Yasmine. H-How are you?"
Oh God, stop stuttering Don.
"I'm good." Yasmine gave a small smile. "So, you're going to the dance too?"
"Yeah," Don said, showing Yasmine the money. "I'm g-going with D-Danny."
"Hey, Don," one of Yasmine's friends said, "we're going to go to the mall to get our dresses Friday and also get hair and nails done. Do you want to come with us?"
"Oh, um…thanks for asking me, but—"
"You don't have to get your hair and nails done too if that's what you're thinking." She chuckled with a hand on her hip. "You can just hang out with us. What do you say?"
Don scratched his head. "Um…sure."
"Awesome." She clasped her hands together. "We'll definitely need a gay guy's point of view too when we get our dresses from the shop and get our nails and hair done!"
She flipped her hair and wiggled her fingers and the other girls cheered. Yasmine looked at her with an I-can't-believe-you-just-said-that expression on her face. Don just glued on his best fake smile as she held his arm with both hands and jumped up and down. This definitely garnered the attention of several people in the crowd and he took deep breaths to release the anxiety in his chest.
She thankfully released Don's arm and said, "I booked our appointments two months in advance. The name's Ashley." He shook her hand. "We'll meet at the mall right after school Friday. Can you make it?"
"Uh…yeah, I can make it."
Ashley smiled gleefully and they were soon next in line to purchase and receive their tickets. They then exchanged phone numbers and he waved them goodbye. He returned to his table and sat down; the anxiety that was simmering inside him was cooling down.
"Did you get the tickets?" Danny asked, popping a tater tot into his mouth.
"Yeah…I'm also going to go to the mall with Yasmine and her friends on Thursday after school," Don added, giving the tickets to Danny.
"Really?" Wendy questioned. "Why?"
Don shrugged. "Apparently they need a gay guy's perspective or something like that." He took a bite of his pizza.
"Oh, wow." Wendy shook her head. "My best guess is that they want you to be their 'gay best friend.'" She made quotation marks with her fingers. "They're asking you because they want you to be their walking accessory. I don't think you should go, Don."
"No, it's okay. I'll use this opportunity to talk to Yasmine and get everything straightened out between us."
"Well, if that's what you want." Wendy drank her milk.
Don needed to kick himself in the ass and finally make things normal again between them. But first, he needed ketchup to spice up those bland fries on his tray. He didn't bother asking the cashier, knowing that asking for anything extra would only sour her mood. He understood that being a lunch lady was not the career option she envisioned for her future, but she did not have to take the built-up anger on Don whose feelings bruise like an overripe banana.
"I'm going to get some ketchup."
Don stood up again and walked to the condiments table. He grabbed a few packets of ketchup when he felt a hand on his shoulder.
Don turned his face to see Kavi. "Oh, hey, what's up?"
"Oh, nothing much." Kavi grabbed a couple packets of mustard. "Just wondering what you and Ashley were talking about?"
Don rolled his eyes. "She asked me to go to the mall with them on Friday," he said casually.
"And you said yes?"
Don looked at Kavi. "What are you trying to say here, Kavi?" Kavi raised an eyebrow and a laugh escaped from Don's mouth. "Look, I'm going because I want to straighten things out with Yasmine, okay?"
"Straighten what out because if you're going back in the closet, you should go to the mall to shop for some better clothes?" Don sighed and Kavi chuckled. "Okay-okay, look, I already overheard Ashley talking about it and I was wondering if you can do a favor for me." Don tilted his head to the side and listened. "I'm going to the dance with my friends and none of us have dates. I was hoping you can persuade Yasmine to go to the dance with me so I don't have to sit on the sidelines again."
Don smiled. "Yeah…I can do that."
Besides healing the wound on Yasmine left by Cupid, Don also wanted to use this opportunity to erase any resentment Kavi had on him for being the first person she saw when Cupid fired his arrow at her, making a bloody crime scene that was the two-sided love triangle. Don thought they would make an ideal couple. Kavi's witty humor and Yasmine's bubbly and sparkling attitude always put a smile to the other's face.
"Wow, thanks, Don." Kavi shook his hand. "Oh, and I also came here because Yasmine told me to tell you that the store will be closed for the week."
Don's eyes widened. "Really?"
"Yeah, it's only temporary…hopefully." Kavi grimaced.
With not enough money coming into the store, Mr. Gupta could not pay his employees and other expenses of his business. This had been a continuous problem with the store for the past several weeks. Don did not really care anymore if he lost his job, but he was afraid of what would happen if the store closed. Bazaar Town was the only source of the Gupta's income. Hopefully things would improve.
"Yeah, I hope so too…well, thanks for telling me and I'll talk to Yasmine for you."
"Okay. Thanks again, man." Kavi slapped Don's back and walked away.
Don smiled and walked back to his table. Kill two birds with one stone, or save two friends with one trip to the mall. Perfect. He was no fan of malls. Too many people. But he was just going to have to go there well-armored to defend himself against guns called perfume bottles and bombs called children with tantrums. Hopefully he was going to make it out in one piece.
"Hey, Don," Danny said when Don returned to their table, "I received a text message from Evelyn. She told us to meet her at Fitzgerald's after school."
"Really?" Don said, scratching his head.
It had been two weeks since Evelyn had last contacted them. Everyone on the team had to remain low until the heat from the event that transpired cooled away. Don wondered what she wanted to talk about in person, at a fast food restaurant.
"Are Chen and Giovanni going to be there?" Don whispered to Danny as he squirted the ketchup onto his tray.
"Nah, she already talked to them. So, is it a plan?" Danny asked, taking a fry and popping it into his mouth.
"Yeah," Don answered before smacking Danny's hand away from his fries.
Danny chuckled and gave Don a quick kiss on the cheek.
As planned, Don and Danny drove to Fitzgerald's after school. The restaurant was the most popular and largest fast food chain in the world. The restaurant had a medieval theme that catered to children. The exterior of the restaurant looked like a castle, complete with flanking towers, a keep as the playhouse, and the gatehouse as the entrance.
It definitely looked fancy, but their meals from the king-sized to jack-sized meals, were just as fatty, oily, and artificial as any other fast food restaurant. The convenience and cheapness of the food was what brought customers back.
They entered the restaurant, walking by the creepy jester statue, the mascot of the franchise. Don used to have nightmares about him ever since his mother tried to take a picture of him while sitting on the statue's lap, and don't even get him started on clowns. He used to see an image of a clown with an evil smile on the popcorn ceiling of his bedroom and he slept in his mother's bed until he was seven.
Don spotted Evelyn waving at them at a table near the wall with a tray filled with food.
"Hi, Evelyn," Don greeted before sitting down across from her.
"Yeah, long time, no see," Danny said as he sat down on the bench next to Don.
"Good to see you guys are all right." Evelyn smiled. "I wanted to talk to you guys about something important, but before we get started, do you guys want anything from my tray. I have everything from the King's Meal here," she offered.
"I guess I'll take Chicken Fitz Nuggets," Don said and took the small basket of steamy chicken nuggets drizzled with honey mustard.
"Eh, why the hell not?" Danny said and took the cold Chocolate Fitz Shake with a scoop of whipped cream on top.
Don took a bite of a chicken nugget and said, "Wow, for cheap food, I forgot how good these taste." Danny nodded as he sipped his chocolate shake.
"That's because the chicken nuggets and chocolate shakes, for example, contain an undisclosed ingredient that enhances the flavor of the food by tricking the receptors of the brain. It's similar to MSG, but much worse. It also tricks the brain into thinking you haven't eaten anything even though you just ate the King's Meal for example. Those advertisements that state the food is made out of all natural ingredients, total bullshit.
"This leads to customers purchasing a second order of the same meal or to increase the size. This is causing increased obesity, mostly to the poor who can only afford cheap food like Fitzgerald's. This corporation is also bribing politicians to drop funding for grocery stores and farmers' markets in poor neighborhoods where they can get healthy food like fruits and vegetables. So Fitzgerald's food is the only source of their nutrition, even though it lacks in almost every vital nutrient that helps the body function normally. And the stockholder of the company is part of the organization, giving tens of millions of dollars in generous donations."
Don looked at the chicken nugget that greased his fingers and dropped it back into the basket, wiping away the grease and bread crumbs with a napkin. "I'm not hungry anymore."
Danny chuckled and set the chocolate back onto the table. "So, you want the team back together so we can take down this corrupt businessman because that worked so well the first time?"
Evelyn smiled. "This is different. We're going to take our time to plan this thoroughly. I'm choosing this one specifically to train us, so we can be more prepared when we tackle the other corporate men and women in the near future. So, you say this is a tutorial before we start the real game. So, are you two in?"
Don was still shell-shocked from his experience on the top of that skyscraper. All those bullets flying above his head almost caused him to piss himself as he huddled next to Danny. But that experience was also enlightening since he discovered the true scope of his powers. The ability to create force fields that stopped the shooting debris of the exploding helicopter from hurting, and possibly killing, him and the others amazed him immensely.
Danny looked at Don with concerned eyes. "I don't know. Are you seriously considering adding Don to the team? I mean, you originally wanted his dad. The last thing I want is to get him hurt…or worse."
Don could not argue against Danny. He knew his abilities were very premature. The few times he did use his psionic abilities, it felt like all the energy in his body was sucked out of him. And it was not like he could go to the gym and practice using his abilities without anyone noticing. He would only be a liability than an actual asset to the team if he did not do something to improve his abilities. This was truly a dilemma.
"That's why we're going to train. Giovanni bought an abandoned warehouse not far from here. He's going to renovate it with fresh coats of paint and polished wooden flooring, and furnish it with equipment that will help us train. In the meantime, I will like you, Don, to accept this gym membership and start exercising." Evelyn handed Don a card. "Improving your abilities can also happen by exercising your physical body through aerobic and anaerobic exercising. Danny, I will entrust you to be the one who trains him and monitors his progress. Okay?"
Danny looked at Don with a reassured smile. "Yeah, I can do that." He held Don's hand firmly under the table.
"Wait. What's going to happen to Fitzgerald's after we deal with the owner?" Don asked with concern. "Many people are going to lose their jobs if—"
"Don't worry, Don. Fitzgerald's won't become another Revolt. Giovanni is currently looking for people who will replace the owner and management after their retirement. Fitzgerald's will hopefully become a source of great nutrition and well-paid employees," Evelyn reassured him. "This is going to help the people and help us take one more step closer to stopping the organization."
Don nodded. "Okay."
"Great. I'll text you two with updates as soon as they arrive. I'm going to go now. You guys can take whatever you want from the tray. I won't be eating it."
"Awesome," Danny said, grabbing the wrapped quadruple cheeseburger and dropping it into his backpack.
"Danny," Don complained, pulling the chicken nuggets away from him.
"What? We can't let this food go to waste," Danny explained before popping a chicken nugget into his mouth and closing the three baskets of fries, onion rings, and chicken nuggets before dropping them into his backpack too.
Don sighed and Evelyn chuckled. "You two are so cute. Well, see you guys later."
Don waved goodbye to Evelyn and stood up. He took the empty tray while Danny took the chocolate shake and placed it on top of the trash bin before leaving the restaurant. Excitement began to spark inside him, tickling his systems. The thought of taking down another corporation thrilled him, and terrified him too.
Don knew he was going to have to train religiously if he wanted to be a promising member of the team. The thoughts of hot sweat, heavy breaths, and lactic acidosis really did not appeal to him. However, Danny being by his side, training him, Don was certain, no, confident that he could do it. And the thought of possibly growing muscles and filling his slim body definitely appealed to him. He would like to be one of those drawings of muscular and athletic men Danny had drawn on his sketchbook, and Don wanted to be more than just a cute face that blushed in uncomfortable situations.
Don sat at the desk of his bedroom with a headlamp over his head, taking a paintbrush with small bristles and painted the chest of Aquila. Leo was a few inches away, drying from his third coat of paint. Don was a master of painting six inch figurines of his favorite superheroes like Aquila and Leo, and was the closest artistic thing he could do that did not require words. He was a perfectionist, making sure every painted detail was exactly like the ones on the box. This was another form of entertainment for him other than writing and reading comic books since he could not afford the latest gaming console. The final product of hours of work could have been compared to getting the highest score in multiplayer.
"Hey, Don, I'm done."
Don turned his chair to see Danny sitting on the end of his bed, his back against the footboard with his sketchbook on his lap and pencil in his hand. "Oh, really?"
"Yeah, come and see it."
Don stood up and sat on the side of the bed next to Danny. Danny gave him his sketchbook and Don saw a very detailed sketch of him working on his figurines from Danny's point of view. But something was off.
"Hey, where's my shirt…and where's my pants?" Don turned to Danny who was smirking.
"I guess I was also fantasizing while I was sketching you." Danny chuckled and moved to place his chin on Don's shoulder. "Do you like it?"
"Yeah…yeah, I do. You definitely sketched me on my good side."
"What are you talking about? You look great on every side," Danny complimented and lightly kissed the crook of Don's neck. "Put that sketchbook down and kiss me."
Don smiled and gently placed the sketchbook on the floor. He then faced Danny and locked their lips together. The heat of Danny's lips immediately transmitted to Don's. Danny then pulled him closer and rolled them so Don was on the bottom.
Their kisses became hungrier and Danny slid his tongue into Don's mouth, the heat pouring in. Don whimpered, causing Danny's tongue to venture his tongue deeper into his mouth and Don placed his hands behind Danny's head to hold him closer.
Danny then moved his lips to Don's neck and Don hugged Danny's head, submerging himself in the sensation. Danny kisses moved to his jaw, then his chin, and returned back onto his lips, Don smiling under his mouth.
The tightness in Don's jean felt like they were going to tear away the seams and he began pumping his hips, his groin demanding friction. He grinded his groin against Danny's thigh and his breaths became hotter and heavier. And then Danny detached their lips and looked into Don's eyes with concern.
"What's wrong?" Don asked.
"Nothing. Just…are you okay with this? Just this?" Don gave Danny a confused look. "What I mean is…are you fine with just kissing? Are you okay with the fact that I won't be able to give you everything in a relationship?"
"Oh…Oh! That. Y-Y-Yeah, I'm totally fine with what we have now," Don said and smiled.
Don was not comfortable with having sex either. His slim body was not something companies wanted to wear their underwear and advertise on city billboards for example. They only got sexual with their clothes on and he cringed whenever Danny's hand ventured under his shirt and felt the flat plains of his chest and stomach. It was actually a good thing that they were not at that level of their relationship yet.
Don's package below his waist was not something he was ready to unwrap and play with others either. It was average just like the rest of his body. Sometimes at the library, Don would look around before skimming a website with gay men that had muscular bodies drenched in oil and big, tightly wrapped packages. These were the kind of men Danny would draw in his sketchbook and he thought until he could achieve that look, there was little chance that he was going to give what Danny wanted.
"Are you sure?"
"Yeah, Danny. As long as we're together, I'm happy," Don reassured him.
Danny smiled like he was relieved and he kissed Don lightly on the lips. "Me too."
Don kissed him back, and then a small alarm was heard. "Is it time?"
Danny looked at his wristwatch and nodded. "Yup, time to be a superhero again." He kissed Don again on the lips before standing up from the bed and retrieving his sketchbook.
"Hey, Danny, can I ask you a question?" Danny nodded. "Since Evelyn is going to help you find the serum that will get your memories back, why are you still dressing up as Anomaly?"
"I have to get the pot from someone so I can restock and sell more." Don's eyebrows raised and Danny chuckled. "You didn't think I have a boss who I split the money with? Also, I feel like I have an obligation now to the people, especially the people in the gay district. They need some to keep the haters in check. I'll feel bad if I start abandoning them."
"Maybe I can join you and Chen one day," Don said, standing up and walking Danny to the front door. "I can be your second sidekick."
"No, Don, I don't want you to get hurt."
"Well, we're going to be fighting corporate thugs soon anyways. I think I can handle a few Fallen Saints," Don countered.
"Maybe. I'll see you tomorrow, okay?" Danny placed a hand on Don's cheek and stroked his thumb over his cheekbone.
"Okay," Don said and kissed Danny before opening the front door and letting Danny leave.
"Hi, Ms. Maguire," Danny greeted Thea who appeared in the hallway.
"Oh, hi Danny."
Danny gave Don one last smile before unlocking his apartment door and walking inside. Don smiled back and closed the locked the door.
"Danny has been here every day, hasn't he?" Thea said as she took her coat off.
"Yeah, I hope that's okay."
"Of course it is. He's a nice friend to have."
"Yeah, about that. Mom, he's…more than a friend. He's…my boyfriend." Don swallowed.
"Oh," Thea said, dropping her coat on the couch.
Don was worried what his mother's perception of Danny would be, but he promised her that he would not keep anymore secrets from her. At least not the ones in his personal life, and he had to tell her before Sergio accidently told her himself since they ate together at Padre Giovanni's Pizzeria where his mother worked twice during the weekend.
"Yeah, if I haven't told you already, he's a junior at my high school and is paying for his apartment with a job that he has. And…he asked me to go to the homecoming dance this Saturday. Is it okay that I go?" Don asked, fumbling with his hands.
Thea looked at Don for a couple of second before smiling gleefully and hugged him. "Of course you can go with your boyfriend. My son's first dance. What are you going to wear?"
"Danny said I can borrow his clothes and he's taking me out to dinner before the dance."
Thea placed her hands on Don's cheeks. "I'm happy for you, Donny. But you have to do something for me." He nodded. "I'm going to take dozens of pictures of you two together in your formal attire or no dance, okay?"
Don chuckled. "Okay."
Thea kissed Don's forehead. "Well, get some sleep, young man. It's past your bedtime."
Don nodded and went back into his bedroom. He closed the door behind him and smiled. And then he frowned. He still had another secret he had not told his mother yet, the secret that his boyfriend had HIV. No, she already had enough on her plate without the whopping weight of Don's infected boyfriend that would send the plate crashing to the floor. Then again, that was the same excuse he made when he did not tell her about the robbery that happened in Bazaar Town and the bullying he endured from Blake. Maybe eventually.
Don breathed and sat back down on his desk chair and refocused on painting Aquila. Through the window, he saw Danny, in his all-white outfit, walking on the sidewalk and immediately disappearing in the blink of an eye. Don smiled again.