It’s amazing the things your friends can teach you about life. And half the time, you never realize it until it’s already happening.
Four years into what ultimately became my seven-year college journey, I was just trying to survive. A full-time course load was one thing, but combined with my involvement in no fewer than four other on-campus organizations and I found myself spending what little spare time I had trying to catch up on my sleep. Which made no sense, because I was twenty-two years old. Wasn’t I supposed to be spry and full of energy? Yet it seemed like every time I slowed down just long enough to catch my breath, my eyelids grew heavy and it was nearly impossible to keep my head upright.
But when my best friend of nearly ten years to that point, Darren—with whom I had roomed with my junior year—told me he needed to confide in me, I made sure I had the energy to give him my undivided. Whatever this was, it was serious. Darren and I never got serious like this. Our friendship was built on him being a massive goofball, race cars, and nerdy shit like White Wolf tabletop roleplaying games. We didn’t do confiding or deep, thoughtful discussions. Come to think of it, I had no friendships like that with other men. All my emotional attachments of any depth happened to be with women.
Whatever that said about me, I wasn’t sure it was good.
By the time Darren got to my on-campus apartment that night, dressed in his typical plain t-shirt, cargo shorts, and flip flops, he was uncharacteristically quiet. Not cracking any jokes, barely greeting my roommate as we went from the living area to the bedroom. Darren wasn’t even looking at me, sitting on the edge of the bed and picking at his fingernails instead. All things he never did.
I sat at the plain wooden desk where my computer sat, some monster desktop model that was four years obsolete. But I couldn’t afford a new model yet, and likely wouldn’t until I got my leftover aid money at the beginning of the spring semester. So I just needed this honker of a machine to last me two more months.
I leaned forward in my chair, elbows on my knees. “You alright, man? You’re never this quiet.”
Darren lifted his head, but he still wasn’t meeting my gaze. It was actually kinda scary at this point, and the paranoid part of me couldn’t help but wonder if this was something having to do with me. Had I said or done something to upset him? Considering most of our interactions the last six months involved twenty-sided die and character sheets, that couldn’t be it. Could it?
Had something happened in Darren’s family?
“I need to admit something about myself,” he finally said, glancing my way before again finding a random spot on the floor incredibly interesting. “But I need you to promise me you won’t freak out.”
“Dude.” I sat back and shook my head. “Unless you’re about to tell me you killed someone, I seriously doubt you could say anything to freak me out.”
I blinked, unsure I had heard Darren correctly. Cocking my head to the side, my lips curled into a sideways grin and a smirk passed through my lips before I could stop it. “That’s it?” I shrugged, leaning forward again. “That’s the big revelation you were scared to tell me?”
Darren shrugged. He was still staring at the floor—seriously, was there a stain there? A bug or something? But at least his shoulders relaxed and a small grin had crept onto his face. “Yeah, well…”
“Need I remind you that the first girl I ever fell in love with wound up being a lesbian?” Another shrug and I sat up straighter. “And that she and I are so close today that I practically consider her family? Why would you being bisexual bother me?”
“Well, that’s different,” Darren said. “Gay girls are easier to accept than guys who like other guys.”
I wanted to tell Darren he was wrong. Really, I did. But the fact was, there was a grain of perverted truth to what he was saying. Not that lesbians were accepted; they were just fetishized. Crafted to cater to porn addicts who had never seen two women actually being intimate before. Whereas men who liked other men were ridiculed and mocked and threatened and, in the most extreme of circumstances, killed. As was so often the case, humanity was not nearly as tolerant or evolved as it liked to think.
“We’ve been friends for how long?” I asked, not really in search of an answer. “You’re still Darren. That doesn’t change.”
Darren finally let himself look at me. Like, really look at me. And I didn’t know it at the time, but in hindsight, it was the first time he had looked at me as something other than a friend. Then again, I’ve always been terrible at picking on signals like that. I need people who are interested in me to be more explicit in their interest. I mean outright tell me they’re interested. Flares shot into the sky and blinking neon signs aren’t obvious enough for me.
But he was more relaxed now. More himself. So anything in his gaze beyond that slipped under my radar. “You’re sure this doesn’t bug you?”
“No!” The sideways grin on my face grew. “Why, you wanna hit on me or something?”
“Well, I do like thin guys,” Darren quipped.
I could see Darren hold his breath as soon as he said that, staring at me and bunching his hands against the legs of his shorts. Breaking into a full smile, I got up from my chair and sat on the edge of the bed next to Darren. Chuckling, I slapped him on the shoulder. “I’m glad you told me,” I said once the laughter died down. “It’s a big thing, admitting something like that about yourself, and it’s cool that you trusted me enough to tell me.”
“I’m just glad you’re okay with it.”
“There’s nothing to not be okay with,” I countered. “As far as I’m concerned, nothing changes between us.”
(Consider those my famous last words.)
Up to that point, I had never given much thought to any penis that didn’t belong to me. I understood there was this implicit belief that any man who wasn’t automatically repulsed by the mere thought of a dick that didn’t belong to him meant he was automatically gay (and thus decidedly less than male), but I never bought into that. For one thing, it was just a body part. It existed, in a variety of shapes and sizes and forms, and to be perfectly frank, why would I worry about anyone else’s? Since I still considered myself straight at this point, I had no reason to think about other men’s cocks. To be disgusted by them or otherwise.
I’m reminded of an old joke from stand-up comedian Ron White, who had a bit once where he convinced a friend he was at least a little bit gay because he enjoyed porn that involved “big, hard, throbbing, cock.” Granted, porn with flaccid dicks wasn’t really all that titillating; by nature, they had to be big and hard.
In the two weeks since Darren had come out to me, things had remained largely unchanged—just as I had promised. He was his usual nutso self, constantly cracking jokes about anything and everything. As it turned out, he had also come out to the rest of our small group of gaming friends, so when Darren started joking about being sexually attracted to…well, all of us, no one batted an eye or thought anything of it. Darren joked about everything else in life; why wouldn’t he also joke about—and I’m quoting him directly here—his “newfound love for the schlong?”
I did notice, though, that almost every such joke thrown my way came with a knowing look. It was the sort of look I couldn’t decipher, but I could tell it was different. I may not have been great at picking up certain signals, but I was at least observant enough to know when something had shifted. It was nice to know those journalism classes were coming in handy for something.
From there, it was simple reasoning. Darren had already made it known he liked thinner guys; Darren was not on the thin side of things, and between his stocky build, his buzzcut hairstyle, and the matching beard, he would likely fit right into what was called the bear community (I knew almost nothing about that sort of thing back then, but have learned plenty in the years since). On the other hand, I had always been the skinny sort. All through childhood and into my early twenties, I had little in the way of body fat or muscle definition. I would never be described as athletic or coordinated, and I would only be considered sexy by those already predispositioned to liking skinny, awkward, nerdy types.
People like Darren, apparently.
Is this was being hit on is like? I wondered during one of our Vampire: the Masquerade sessions. Is he being serious when he says all this, or am I just looking into things?
And if I was just looking into things, did that mean things had changed since Darren came out to me? Now that I knew he liked guys as well as girls, did I let that color every interaction we had? Maybe Darren was hitting on me, seriously or otherwise, or maybe I was seeing things that weren’t there because some part of me was whispering in the back of my head that my best friend was probably sexually attracted to me.
No, that couldn’t be it. Darren or anyone else, why would they find me attractive? No one found me attractive. That was just a fact. I didn’t think that to get down on myself or to engender sympathy from anyone; it was a simple, verifiable truth. I was not a sexy person, I was not a sexual being, and my entire lack of a social life of any sort—beyond tabletop roleplaying—bore that out.
It had gotten to the point where Darren didn’t even have to crack a joke to look at me that way. I still couldn’t make heads or tails of it, only registered it enough to know it was out of the ordinary. And since part of me was convinced I was imagining things, I made it a point not to say anything. Just act cool. Pretend Darren wasn’t making eyes at me. Just roll for initiative, then roll for constitution, then roll for…
Wait, where was I? I rolled my dice, but never saw the number because this time, when I caught Darren looking at me, he was biting his lower lip. I swallowed hard, and I’d be lying if I said there hadn’t been some stirring in my pants under the table.
I cleared my throat, then played it off with a swig of Mountain Dew. But the stirring wouldn’t go away, and I was glad to be seated close enough to the table that no one could see anything below the middle of my stomach. I was having a hard time meeting Darren’s eye now, though I did catch a sideways, knowing grin, even as his character argued with one of the local vampire magistrates about…something or other. I was really losing the thread here, and if a fight scene broke out in all this, my character and I were royally screwed.
Not that my character was a fighter anyway. I’d created a death mage who specialized in helping lost souls cross over. That would be no help against a vampire army.
Yet there I was in my dorm room one night—three nights after the awkward RP session, in fact—on my knees completely naked while Darren sat on the edge of my bed, his black boxers tented. Part of me was having trouble wrapping my head around the fact that I was naked in the presence of another man, but I was so hard (literally throbbing so hard, I felt it without even touching myself) it didn’t matter all that much.
This was the proverbial blood-rushing-to-my-other-head scenario.
Even with his underwear on, I could smell Darren’s scent. That warm musk was filling my senses, and I felt my breathing shallow. A tentative hand rubbed his crotch; I felt him flinch, heard him hiss. The smallest of wet spots formed on his boxers.
Darren pulled his boxers off and I swallowed. Hard. This was it; I couldn't back out now, even if I wanted to. There, inches from my face, stood tall a 5-and-a-half inch beast with a slight up-curve and a glorious purple head. His shaved balls were tight in their sac, warm to my tentative touch. His cock twitched and again he hissed.
Darren was straining, his hands balled into fists, his jaw clenched; he was trying to keep his composure. Was he as nervous as I was? There was no telling how experienced Darren actually was when it came to being with other men. But he was as hard as me, and I could already see a dollop of precum on his tip.
Darren locked eyes with me and I couldn’t turn away. Part of me wanted to, but there was a finality to this moment neither of us could ignore. Just from the look on Darren’s face, I could tell he wanted me to devour him, but he understood this was my first time; it wasn't like Darren could just grab the back of my head and stuff his cock into my mouth.
I didn't even know how much of it I'd be able to fit. But I wanted to know.
I wrapped a hand around Darren’s base and squeezed, almost on pure instinct. I watched another drop of precum ooze from his slit, momentarily frozen—not in fear, but wonder. I don’t how to adequately describe the first time I held a cock other than my own in my hands. Only that my mouth was watering far more than it had in quite some time. Only that his heft in my grasp surprised me. Only that I wanted nothing more in that moment than to make him cum.
Slowly, I wrapped my lips around his head and slowly began lowering my mouth. I heard Darren moan, and I saw him toss his head back out of the corner of my eye. I got roughly half his thick length into my mouth before I stopped, not daring to test my gag reflex. One hand roamed up his considerable, hairy stomach, while my left hand disappeared between my legs and lazily worked up and down my own shaft.
I gasped with Darren’s cock in my mouth. Even as light as I was touching, I nearly burst.
What the hell was happening to me? I hadn’t been this quick on the proverbial trigger since the first night I discovered what masturbation was.
Saliva trickled down Darren’s shaft and I brought up a free hand to cup his balls. I started bobbing my head up and down, slowly and unsure, before steadily picking up speed and sucking in my cheeks. Every time my tongue swirled over his head, Darren shuddered and my tongue was greeted with another glob of precum. The next time I ran my tongue over his head, I squeezed his balls; Darren grabbed the back of my head and tugged on my hair.
"You don't want me to cum yet, do you?"
Truth was, I kinda did. There was a certain power in this, in the way he reacted to me. I more or less had Darren in my palm of my hand, and the confidence boost that came from how hard he was for me—for me—surprised me almost as much as how hard I was. Darren was more or less at my mercy—a fact I confirmed when I crammed even more of his length into my mouth and he arched his back with a loud moan.
Another squeeze of his balls, and my other hand was again between my own legs, pumping my throbbing shaft. Maybe I could cum at the same time as Darren? Fortunately, I didn't have to wait long; the next time I swiped my tongue along his head, his entire body went stiff and he screamed. I felt a warm rush flooding my mouth as his shaft pulsated against my tongue.
His reaction, his taste, his scent...it was all too much, and as Darren emptied himself into my mouth, I gave a muffled scream and blew my own load. Spunk flew onto the floor as I tugged rapidly on my cumming cock, my body shuddering as I pulled him out of my mouth and let his release spill out all over his stomach.
I wasn’t sure how much I liked cum in my mouth, but I loved the sight of it smeared all over Darren. I wondered, ever so briefly, how it would feel on my own skin, even as I kept lightly stroking his wet shaft. Darren hissed and twitched when my finger brushed just under his head, and it took all my willpower to keep from stuffing him in my mouth again.
I struggled to catch my breath, looking up at Darren through hooded eyes. He rewarded me by sitting up, grabbing both sides of my face, and kissing me with a growl. My first kiss with another man, all warm lips and awkward tongues and stubble—oh, and it was with his warm cum in my mouth.
Amazingly, I kept my hard-on. Which was good, because now I wanted his mouth on me.
Author's Note: The following is a sneak peek into a draft of my debut erotica novel, Lust & Lamenting, which will hopefully be out either late 2021 or early 2022. The events in this story are true, though the names of those involved have been changed. Please note, this is an early draft and might be subject to edits.