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Skirting The Issue
“Thanks a lot for the hard work, guys,” I said, shaking the hands of the three movers, slipping each of them a twenty while I did it.
The unloading of all my earthly belongings into my new condo had gone smoothly, and the money I”d paid for the movers was well worth it, considering the stairs. There was an elevator, but it was at the other end of the building and the guys had decided it was easier just to move everything up the stairs on my end. Having walked up and down it a few times carrying small items as an act of solidarity, I”d decided I wouldn”t be doing anything so foolish. It was the elevator for me.
I walked over to the railing and stared out over the water. The condo complex sat on the intercoastal waterway, so there was an inlet behind me called Bayou Bay, and the Gulf of Mexico in front of me. A steady breeze was blowing off the water, rustling my light brown hair and cooling the light sheen of sweat on my arms and neck. The day was still hot, though we were nearing dusk. For a moment I thought about just how grateful I was that I didn”t move furniture for a living.
While I enjoyed the deepening colors of dusk, I heard a noise. A door had opened two down from mine, back towards the stairs, and it had grown just dark enough that the spill of light from inside was noticeable. A young girl saw me noticing her and she smiled and gave me a shy wave as she walked by me, heading down the open hallway toward the elevator.
Cute kid, I thought, and I went back to watching my sunset. I was debating between going in and getting started on putting things away, or grabbing a beer and returning to the railing. I made a mental note to get myself an outdoor chair. I”d seen a number of such up and down the way.
I”d just decided that I better get some work done inside if I wanted a place to sleep that night. The movers had set up the bed for me, but I”d have to unpack the linens and find my pillows. I leaned back from where I”d been resting on my elbows and saw the light of the elevator as the door opened and light spilled out, revealing the little girl from earlier.
Then I found myself wondering if going inside as she was walking toward me would be rude, or if waiting for her would be creepy. I decided to wait while pretending not to, if that makes any sense. As she got closer it seemed weird to not even acknowledge that she was there, so I turned and smiled.
“My mom forgot something in the car,” she explained with a shrug. “You just moved in, huh?”
As I said before, she was a cute kid. About twelve I thought. She had surprisingly short hair for a girl, a sweep of auburn across her brow and her ears and neck were bare of hair. She was wearing a girly little choker and a long-sleeved t-shirt with a plaid skirt over crimson and green leggings. She didn”t have any bumps under that thin shirt, so maybe twelve was pushing it. Or maybe she was just a late bloomer.
“Yup,” I smiled. I indicated the deepening scarlets and purples of the sky and said, “I”m using the view as an excuse not to go in and start putting everything away.”
A tinkle of laughter. “Me and my mom moved kayseri escort in a few months ago. We”ve still got boxes full of stuff.”
“You”re filling me with confidence, kid,” I grinned. Then, “Well, I better get to it. Nice to meet you, neighbor. I”m Danny.”
“Oh! I”m Ethan,” she said. Wait, she said? I must have looked momentarily confused because he took sympathy on me and said, “I”m a boy.”
“Uhhh… of course you are,” I said awkwardly.
Another tinkle of what I now knew was boyish laughter, and he stepped forward and offered me his hand. I took it, feeling the warmth of it as we shook. He surprised me again with a firm handshake.
“Nice to meet you, Danny,” he said, and then he released my hand and walked past me to his condo, where the light swallowed him up with a cutesy little wave. I just stared after him, still feeling the warmth of his hand.
I was still thinking about Ethan as I put away the last of my flatware. I didn”t have any real plan for unloading boxes. After finding my sheets and pillows I just grabbed boxes as I came to them; the most recent had been marked “kitchen”.
I”m going to surprise no one reading this by disclosing that I”m a boylover. It”s the reason I didn”t pay Ethan much attention when I thought he was a she. Still, I liked boys. Not girls. Not girlish boys. I know there are a lot of fetishes and kinks in the disparate community of boylovers. You”ve got your foot fetishists, your B horny and mostly uncaring where they got off so long as they got off. Nice and uncomplicated. The Mexican kid had just been after my money, I”m sure. He hadn”t been a child prostitute or anything, just an opportunist. That left Luke, my last little boy lover, who had most definitely been gay and knew it when I”d met him at eleven. We hadn”t hooked up until he was twelve, but he”d been aiming for me for awhile by that point.
Hooking up with a boy was always problematic. I suppose anything that could get you sent to prison for a horrible number of years can tend to be viewed as problematic. So many things could go wrong. You were dealing with a younger person who didn”t always understand all of their feelings, which I suppose is why it”s illegal to begin with, but anyone who tells you kids are easy to manipulate into sex is either an idiot, or a soulless predator. Kids are a lot more savvy than they are given credit for, and they see through that kind of bullshit pretty well. I”d never had to manipulate any of the boys I”ve been with, as a kid or as an adult. They”ve all known what they wanted, or at least an idea of it, and I”d found that allowing them to take things at the pace with which they were comfortable was the safest and easiest road.
I wondered if Ethan were gay. Again. I was still wondering about it when I lay down for sleep.
Ethan wasn”t my first thought when I woke the next morning, but he was probably the second or third. I pulled on a pair of thin cotton jogging shorts and peed, then navigated through all the boxes into the kitchen. I didn”t have anything fresh in the fridge, so I had to settle for a power bar and a handful of dried Cheerios. I”d have to get to the grocery store.
I”d opened the drapes. I told myself it was so I could see the sun on the water, but really I was hoping for a glimpse of Ethan. Twice I”d glanced up as shadows passed by, but each time it turned out to be an adult neighbor. Neither had glanced at me.
Around noon, I decided to go to the grocery store. While I was driving I spotted a school bus and it hit me. It was April. Kids were still in school. No wonder keçiören escort I hadn”t seen Ethan. I felt a mild bit of uneasy guilt as I realized that I”d already decided to get online and check out school bell times for local schools as soon as I got home.
The problem, it turns out, is that I didn”t know what grade Ethan was in, so deciding what school he might attend was difficult. Assuming he was a bit younger than I thought, he might be in elementary school, which in this area started between eight and nine depending on the school, and let out between two and three. If he was a middle schooler, then they universally started at 9:40am and let out at 4:10pm.
Finally I gave myself a mental kick for obsessing over this kid I”d only met once and wasn”t even sure I was attracted to and got back to the onerous job of unpacking. I made decent progress through the afternoon, in spite of keeping an eye on the front windows. I still hadn”t seen any sign of him by three, but that didn”t necessarily mean anything.
About three-thirty I saw a lady walk by. I was in the bedroom, which also had a window which looked out to the walkway. I was immediately sure she was Ethan”s mother. She seemed the right age, early to mid-thirties. Her hair was an almost identical shade of auburn and the quick look I had of her face somehow reminded me of him. Also, there were only four more condos that way before you reached the stairs, and why would she be taking the stairs?
I thought about going out quickly and introducing myself, but she was only two doors down and I didn”t think I could get to my door before she went through hers, and even if I did, it struck me as a bit desperate. I let it go and went back to work.
I was working on setting up my computer in the second bedroom, which would be my office. I work from home as a programmer, or a code monkey, as I prefer to think of myself. Luckily, I”m a skilled code monkey and my reputation as an independent contractor was good enough to keep me working and allow me to select my jobs and my hours.
I knew it was after four o”clock, as my eyes kept slipping to the clock. I wasn”t sure how long it would take him to get home. I was pretty sure I”d have noticed if Ethan”s mother had left to pick him up, so he was likely taking a bus. If his school let out at ten after four, it could take as little as maybe ten minutes and upwards of thirty probably to get home. I didn”t want to miss him.
As I worked and watched the clock I thought about just going out and waiting. I”d bought a lawn chair while I was out and I could grab a beer and just wait. It seemed a bit suspicious however. Or likely I was just paranoid. As it was, I nearly missed him. I”d gone ahead and grabbed that beer and I was in the kitchen when I saw him passing my windows.
I saw Ethan glancing into my window as he passed, but I”m not sure if he saw me. I raised a quick hand in greeting, but he didn”t react. He”d seemed polite last night, so I doubt he”d ignore me. I figured that the late afternoon light was bouncing off the window, making it difficult to see inside. I could only see the boy”s upper body, which was clad in a jeans jacket with pink lapels and a gray hoodie underneath. I got the impression that the shirt underneath that was white, but he passed too quickly. He”d worn a backpack of some sort.
And that was it for the day, I”m sad to say. I went out a couple of hours later, sitting in my chair and sipping a beer, but he didn”t make an appearance. I was even bold enough to sidle down the walk a bit and glance at his windows, but both sets showed closed blinds. I wondered if he slept in the front or back bedroom. ankara kendi evi olan escort I imagined him in bed at night with his curtains open and the moonlight playing over his delicate little body. I wondered if he wore boys briefs or if he took the whole girl clothes thing all the way and wore panties. I was surprised to realize that I didn”t know which I”d prefer.
The next day was Wednesday. Now that I had an idea of his schedule, I was better able to plan for a “chance” meeting. I got up earlier than my usual ten o”clock, rising a few minutes before nine. My Keurig gave me a nice cup of Dunkin” Donuts coffee, which I took outside with me. Then I planted myself in my new chair and waited.
I was taking only my third sip when I was rewarded by a sound off to my left. I glanced over to see Ethan emerging from his condo. Today he seemed to be wearing the same denim jacket from yesterday, with pink lapels and several little stickpins, featuring unicorns and kittens and other cartoony little characters. Underneath this was a pink t-shirt which also featured a cartoon unicorn. He was wearing another skirt, also in denim, which matched the jacket. Below that were brightly colored tights or leggings which I would almost describe as rainbow stripes, except that the only colors were black, dark blue, pink, yellow, violet and then light blue. They were stuffed into zebra striped high top sneakers. It was certainly a look.
“Hey,” I said with a smile, lifting my coffee mug in greeting. “Ethan, right?” As if I could have forgotten.
“Right,” he smiled. His voice was sweet.
“You must be heading off to school,” I said.
He walked closer, stopping only a couple of feet away. His skin was so soft and perfect. I noticed now that he was close that he had hazel eyes. His nose was a cute little thing, and his lips were so delicately pink that I wondered if he was wearing lipstick. I imagined from the bit of shine that he was wearing lip gloss at the least. I wondered if it tasted like strawberry. I remembered kissing a girl who wore strawberry lip gloss when I was about his age. He had what I generally termed as chipmunk cheeks when he grinned. There was another choker around his neck, covering his immature Adam”s apple. He smelled of girlish perfume, a bit too sweet, like candy. Maybe it was strawberries, too.
“Yeah,” he said, leaning a bit to the side so that he could glance through my windows. “I guess you”re getting all unpacked, huh?”
“Getting there,” I allowed. “I hired movers to get it here. I should have hired someone to put it all away for me.”
“I could help, if you really mean it,” he said, the eagerness in his voice apparent.
That was intriguing. Get him alone in my apartment? Not that I”d make a move on him or anything, of course, but getting to know him would be nice, and getting him used to the idea of coming over was another great step. If I was interested. Was I interested?
“Well, if you really mean it, I”d be happy for the help,” I told him. “The move has put me behind on my work and that”d really make things easier for me.”
“I could come over after school!” he said, bouncing on his toes.
“Okay,” I allowed, “but only if your mother is okay with it.”
“She will be,” he assured me.
“So how much do you think you”d want?” I asked.
He glanced down at a pink rubber watch on his skinny wrist, then looked pensively down towards the elevator. He bit his lip nervously, which I found adorable. “I really have to catch my bus. Can we talk about it later?”
“Sure,” I said, waving him down the hall. “Come see me after you”ve talked to your mom. Or bring her over if you like. I”d love to meet all my neighbors.”
“Okay, thanks, Danny,” he said, and he spun off down the hall, his My Little Pony backpack bouncing on his shoulder.
All I could think about was that he”d remembered my name.