CHAPTER ONE
PERSUASION

"Have fun."

Those two words left Keith's mouth before his best friend even finished speaking, leaving the blonde staring at him in shock. His expression was almost the equivalent to that given if he had been slapped with a raw piece of fish. Xear different colored eyes were wide, mouth agape as he struggled to get words out in the order he wanted.

"You're not coming?!" He swung his arms up in disbelief. "Dude, they've been talking about this party for weeks, how could you not come?!"

"Studying." Keith shrugged, pushing his glasses up a bit. They had always been a bit to big for him. "I heard talk from a few teachers in the lounge near the library that there may be a pop quiz either next week..." He paused, thinking for a second before adding under his breath, "or the week after that." He lifted a few heavy hardcover textbooks onto his desk. " 'Tis always better safe than sorry."

"Man, come on!" Xear whined, dropping in a sitting position onto the newly pressed bed sheets of Keith's bed. "I'm the one who's gonna be sorry if Chastity LaGrange doesn't see us at that party."

"Her name hardly goes with her lifestyle." Keith scoffed, rolling his eyes. "I don't even interact with her. That's all you and your gossip group." He turned the page. "Besides, why should I care if she sees me there or not? She'll have her mouth too full of male genitalia and liquor to care."

"Slut-shaming ain't cool, bro."

There was a stiff silence for a second, until Xear sighed heavily and fell back completely onto Keith's bed.

"I'm begging you." He whimpered. "Every hot chick from school is gonna be there. I need you to be my wing man!"

"I never really understood that ter-"

Getting up quickly from the bed, Xear covered Keith's mouth with annoyance clear on his face. "Which means you need to cut the nerdy talk..." He removed his hand when his friend's glasses began to fall. "...and start wearing contacts."

Keith scowled. "I don't see how my eye-wear should affect my social status." His eyes went back to the text book, until it was shut closed by a much stronger hand. This time it was Xear's turn to roll his eyes.

"It does when you've been wearing the same pair for the last six years." He finally removed his hand. Keith turned to him, and pushed his glasses back once more.

"I have no interest in going." He said sternly, gripping a pencil from his desk in his right hand. "And I know for a fact that you have almost every jock in school as a best friend. Why not take one of them?" He turned back to his studying.

For a moment, Keith thought he had won the argument, until Xear scratched his head and muttered beneath his breath, "I'm just worried you'll be a virgin forever..."

It had been said in such a quiet voice that Keith almost didn't hear him. However, when he did, the sound his back made when he turned as fast as he did would truly echo throughout his house for years to come.

"What?!" He cried, stammering in embarrassment. Xear shook his head and sighed, sitting down on the bed again with his head in his hands. He looked like a distressed father.

"Well, I always just thought you..."

"Never had sexual intercourse?!"

"Okay, dude, you can't blame me!" Xear lifted his face and pointed an accusing finger at the nerd. "You always get kind of grossed out when you see boobs in any type of way. Remember that time Kadaver brought by dirty magazines and you literally almost puked?"Keith flinched, furthering Xear's point. " And, to be fair, you do call it 'sexual intercourse'!"

Keith was a bright rouge now, suppressing a scream in his throat. He felt his body freezing up with the simple thought of having this discussion. He had never spoke about this type of thing with absolutely anyone and he wasn't going to start now. Calming himself, he muttered, "I would have rather you just asked instead of jumping to-"

"Are you a virgin?"

"Xear!"