excerpt

“Hey there,” Ollie said when I opened the door, that million-watt grin lighting up his face again. “Like the hair. Got another one of these for you.”

“Thanks.” I tried to kick-start my mouth into saying something interesting, but it refused to cooperate and decided it wanted to dry out instead. I suppose it was slightly less embarrassing than drooling over him. In an effort not to stare, I forced my gaze away and fixed it on the front garden next door. There was only a low, brick wall separating my spartan, gravel driveway with Mrs. Felpersham’s garden, but it was like another world over there. She’d crammed it full of blowsy pink flowers, a wooden wishing well and more garden gnomes than you could shake a stick at. Those gnomes always gave me the heebie-jeebies, but at least there were plenty to keep my eyes occupied at times like this.

“Oh, sweet! I’ve got that exact same T-shirt! ’Course, mine’s a bit smaller.” Ollie started bouncing up and down on his heels, and I wanted to lick him all over, he looked so appealing. At that thought, despite being full of dialysate, I felt my cock starting to stir. It’s a good thing I was in the XXX-Large version of the Wolverine shirt. Still, I leant forward a little just to make sure nothing showed.

My mind got stuck on the idea of how much I wanted to see him in that T-shirt and then out of it. I started to worry that I was going to blurt it out by accident, so I kept my mouth firmly shut. I must have looked like a right stuck-up twat. Didn’t seem to bother Ollie, though.

“I should bring some of those comics round for you to read. It would be good to have someone to chat about them with. Most of my other friends think I’m nuts, you know?”

What? Other friends? Did that mean he considered me a friend? We’d only known each other for a few weeks. I realised I needed to speak, and fast, if I wasn’t to make a terrible impression and get struck off that friends list.

“Yeah, uh, great. I mean, I’d like that, if you don’t mind lending your stuff to a stranger.” Great. Now I’d called myself a stranger when he was trying to be friendly.

“Nah, it’s cool. I know where you live, after all.” He gave me another huge grin that made his cheeks dimple. It really wasn’t fair. No one should be allowed to be that cute.

We did the parcel-signing thing, and I instructed my hands to stay where they were and not go straying over to stroke his. He had a graze on the knuckles of his left hand, and I wanted to kiss it better, like I used to with Zoe.

“Looks nasty,” I said.

“Oh yeah,” Ollie said, flexing his hand. “Skating injury. I was going for a 360 kickflip, but I bollocksed it up. Looks worse than it felt.”

Shit, I must have been staring. I hoped I hadn’t started making kissy lips or anything.

“I didn’t know you were a skateboarder,” I said. After all, dressing like a skater was no guarantee of actually taking part in it. “Are you any good?”

He twisted his lips in a half smile and wrinkled his nose, but his eyes still sparkled. “Not as good as I’d like, but that’s okay. I know I’m never gonna compete, or anything, but it’s fun. I like hanging out with the guys, you know? Studying their technique.”

There was this glint to his eyes, and I thought maybe he was trying to imply something, but I wasn’t going to risk making a fool of myself and spooking a straight bloke.

I mumbled something even I couldn’t understand and hugged my parcel close. Then I worried that it would pull my T-shirt in tight and reveal the tube, so I dropped my arms to my sides and tried to look casual.

“What have you got today?” Ollie asked, pointing at the parcel. “Another film? You should sign up for that Love Film thingy, you know? Save you a heap of money.”

“Uh, no… I mean, they’re not all films.” Shit, why hadn’t I prepared a lie for if he asked me that? I was rubbish at making things up on the spot, and I wasn’t about to tell him it was a couple of DVDs about delivery guys who liked to deliver more than just the mail to their eager customers. “This is work stuff,” I added lamely.

“Oh yeah? What is it you do?”

Okay, this I could handle. The trick was trying to make it sound interesting enough so as not to send other people into a coma. “Software design. I’m currently working on the code for a complex payroll system.”

Ollie nodded, and I was pleased to see that his eyes hadn’t glazed over. “So does that make you your own boss? Nice one.”

“Not exactly, but I only have to check in with him now and again. I’m mostly left to my own devices.”

“Ah, that’s not so bad, then. I wanna be my own boss one day. I’ve got two bosses, and they’re both bastards, but at least the one in the café lets me have free coffee on my shifts.”

“You work in a café too? How on earth do you fit that in?” And how the hell did he have the energy to get up in the morning after holding down two jobs? “You must be knackered.”

“Nah, it’s no trouble. I just do a couple of hours there early evenings and on weekends. Need to save up some money coz I want to open a little café by the ramps in Caversham Park. I could sell proper coffee and watch the guys skate all day, and whenever it gets quiet, I could draw. That’d be well sweet.” He had this faraway look in his eyes that made him look so young and innocent. He had to be at least eighteen, though, right? It’s not like they’d let someone who’d just passed their driving test out in a big van like that.

Then the sparkle was back. “Shit, man, I’d better get going or someone’s gonna wonder where I am. Listen, I’ll bring those comics next time, all right?”

“Yeah, great. I mean, that would be really kind of you.”

“No trouble.” He grinned, and for a moment, I thought he was about to hug me or something, but then the moment was gone, and he was bouncing down the drive.

“Bye, Ollie.” God, I envied that energy. And I was so fucking desperate to get my hands on those pert buttocks and squeeze.

“Laters,” he threw over his shoulder with a smirk, and I flushed as I realised I’d been caught in the act again. Damn it! It was such a tease, trying to work out just what his arse looked like under those baggy trousers.