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Almost Lover

I Cannot Wake Up In The Morning

“There you are,” Stryker sighed, sitting beside me on the back porch. I smiled over at him. I haven’t really got to see him all night. A lot of my friends showed up, and people were dancing all over my back yard. I just honestly needed a moment to myself. Today was my eighteenth birthday, and I just wanted to hang out with my boyfriend.
“Hey,” I smiled over at him. “What have you been up too?”
“Chilling out and looking for you.” Stryker replied, bumping my shoulder. “I missed you, Asher.”
I smiled over at him.
“I missed you too.”
Styker stared at me for a moment, not doing anything else. He just looked into my eyes, and I returned his intense stare. I was slightly aware of the dancing teenagers around us, but all that really mattered was Stryker. Maybe this party was just a bad idea? All I really wanted to do was kiss him, or hold him. Something stupid like that.
“Stop pouting, it’s your birthday!” He argued.
“It’s kind of hard not too.” I answered honestly. “Maybe we should have gotten a little more alone time.”
“I’m down with alone time.”
I smiled widely.
“I have an idea…”
“What is it?” Stryker asked, raising his eyebrows.
“I want to go out,” I stated. “Just us,”
“Okay…” Stryker trailed off. “Where? Asher, this is your birthday party. You can’t just kick people out?”
“I know, but it’s almost ten anyway. I’ll get my parents to get them to leave, because of church tomorrow.” I smirked, standing up. “Then I’m taking you out,”
“Thanks,” Stryker rolled his eyes.
I don’t think he realizes how fucking attracted I happen to be to him. I like him for much more than his looks, but he’s great to look at. When he smirks, it makes my insides crawl in a good way. When he laughs I feel like smiling. When he whispers in the morning kind of voice, it makes me want to jump him. I get turned on when he wears tight jeans. I love the way that they look on him. I love his since of humor. I love that he isn’t afraid to show how he feels.
It didn’t take my parents long to clear everyone out. I was surprised how quickly they left. I did have a lot of fun. I got to eat some good food, open some presents, got some money, and some other things. My mom took some pictures of pretty much everyone there. I didn’t expect her to go so overboard, but it is my mom. She tends to do that a lot of the time though. By the time everyone else was out of the house, my parents, Stryker’s mom, Mary Ann and Alyssa were the only ones left, just like we were before they came. Stryker was talking to Kaylie and Taylor while I grabbed us some water. When I came back, our parents were talking. I stood there while I waited for my boyfriend.
“I think that’s everyone,” Stryker stated, coming back into the dinning room. I wrapped my arms around his neck, and pressed our lips together before he had a chance to say anything else to anyone. I missed being able to kiss him all night long. I felt his hands grip the bottom of my shirt, and I smiled before pulling away. “Baby, you have to buy me dinner first,”
I scoffed, and un-wrapped my arms from around him. I held out my hand, and his fingers quickly intertwined with my own. I looked over toward our parents and I smiled.
“I’m taking this one out,”
“That’s why everyone was forced out,” Stryker added with a laugh.
“I just miss being with you,” I admitted sheepishly.
“Aren’t you a keeper?” Stryker joked.
I bit my lip. I really hope that I am a keeper. I can’t deal without him in my life. I need Stryker just like I needed air. He means the world to me. I can’t have him taken away from me. It would probably great my heart if that ever happened. I’m already in way too deep. We’ve been together for a short amount of time, but dammit, I love him already.
“I sure hope so,” I smiled, picking up our hands to kiss the back of his palm. “I love you,”
Stryker rolled his eyes lightly.
“I love you too,” He replied. “Stop making me feel like a girl.”
“You are the girl.” I stated, shaking my head.
“No, I am a man!” Stryker stated, making our parents laugh. “Dammit, Asher. Stop that,”
I chuckled, and smiled widely at him.
“Man up and accept that you do play the girl in our relationship.” I retorted.
Stryker groaned and shook his head.
“I could smack you,”
“That would be abuse,” I smirked at him.
“I don’t think that would stop me,” He stated, grabbing my scarf. He pulled me forward until our lips were pressed together once more. From underneath my eye lids, I could see the flash of my mom’s camera going off. She hasn’t put that damn thing down the entire night. He pulled away from me with a huge, stupid smile on his lips. “I’m grabbing my jacket. You want yours?”
I nodded and watched as he walked off. An audiable sigh left my lips, making my dad laugh. My head snapped toward him, and he just shook his head at me. Mary Ann, Alyssa, Shelley, my mom, and my dad were all just staring at me. I felt uncomfortable just standing there. I shuffled a little bit, and chewed on my bottom lip before their eyes got to me.
“Okay! What’s wrong?” I bursted.
“You two…” My dad shook his head. “It’s amusing?”
“How?” I laughed, furrowing my brows.
“You go from arguing to kissing in a matter of seconds, dear. It’s rather funny.” My mom wiggled her eyebrows. “I can’t believe how…you’re acting. It’s weird!”
Shelley nodded.
“I’ve never ever seen either of them act like that.”
I took a deep breathe.
“So…you’re okay…wi-with us?” I asked.
My insecurity showed majorly when I asked her. I don’t want to admit it out loud, or to myself, but I begged from Shelley approval. I was scared that she hated me, or us, now. I did yell at her, sort of. I guess I yelled at her? It was more of a stern talking to? God, I don’t even know what to call it. I just didn’t want her to be mad at me. I wanted her to see how much he means to me. I felt bad for ‘turning’ Stryker gay. I didn’t mean to. He’s the one who kissed me. Not the other way around.
“If you love him and make him happy…” She trailed off with a sigh. “It’s just different, Asher. Please forgive me. I want you and Stryker to forgive me,”
“You’re forgiven,” Stryker stated, tossing my coat at him. I caught it and slipped on the leather jacket.
“I just…couldn’t imagine my son…turning gay? I don’t even know how to word that sentence,” She laughed nervously. My mom patted her friends back. She understood what Shelley was going through. Although my mom never acted on her feelings, I knew that she had just as a hard time accepting me as Shelley was. Shelley is just more vocal about it.
Stryker rolled his eyes, but laughed slightly.
“Do you guys want to know a secret?”
My dad laughed.
“Do tell,” Mary Ann winked toward us playfully.
“I kissed Asher first,” He wiggled his eyebrows before kissing a surprising peck to my cheek.
“No way!” My mom giggled.
“Nah uh!” Alyssa laughed.
I shrugged and nodded. Alyssa was a pretty funny girl. We got to know her pretty well tonight. She was really great at keeping us a secret. Our friends seemed to like her, well except for Izzy but she didn’t count.
“Yeah. Drunk and all,” I pinched his cheek. “Stryker will do whatever he wants when he’s had a little bit of something in him. He’s more loose with his words.”
“Hey, I thought it so I did it.” Stryker shrugged. “I would blame it on the alcohol, but I kind of love this guy, so…”
“Okay…now let’s get out of here,” I stated. “It’s getting late,”
“Alright.” Stryker sighed. “I’m ready when you are,”
I smiled, and laced my fingers with his again before we said goodbye to everyone. I led the way out to my car, and we quickly got in. I was excited to take him out.

“I had so much fun last night,” Stryker whispered in my ear the next morning. Chills went up and down my spine. His arms wrapped tightly around my bare torso and he trailed kisses from my neck, down my shoulder, and then my back. I shook a little bit under his touch. I felt the smirk planted on my skin, and I turned my head to look at him.
“I did too,” I replied. “Thanks for letting me take you out,”
“I can’t believe that you took me to some gay bar,” He shook his head.
I laughed.
“It was fun though, right?” I asked. “We were able to make up without anyone seeing us. And it wasn’t even Baltimore,”
“I know,” He sighed, resting his head on my shoulder. “I better go get a shower,”
“Probably,” I admitted.
Last night was Sunday. After my birthday party Saturday night, we went out to catch a movie. Stryker went to church with me the next morning, and last night, we decided to go out and have some fun. Oddly enough, there were a lot of straight women in the club last night. I guess they figured that they could go there without being hit on. It was nice to not be feeling like people were staring. There were so many…girly looking men. Cross dressers were everywhere! Then there were guys in weird costumes. It felt like Halloween. Then there was Stryker and myself. We were wearing our casual attire. We were the only ones that looked normal. It was weird…but in a cool way.
“Pick me out something?” He asked.
“Sure,” I nodded in agreement. Stryker kissed me softly before he left to grab a shower. I slipped off of my bed, and slipped into some simple skinny jeans, a band t-shirt, and Stryker’s black TOMS. I really need to get me some, but I haven’t yet. I smiled at myself, and grabbed my long necklace that Stryker gave me before deeming myself ready. I let my hair go today. It’s a wavy mess, but that’s okay.
I went to my closet, which slowly became our closet, and I grabbed some black skinny jeans, an aqua colored shirt, and my converse. When he walked out of my bathroom wearing boxers, I smirked at him. He rolled his eyes, and flipped his perfectly set hair. He winked back at me, and looked at him clothes that I picked out. Stryker laughed, and accepted the things that I wanted to see him in. he quickly got changed in front of me, and slipped on some socks. He gladly slid on my converse without saying anything.
“So we are that couple now?” He joked.
“What couple?” I asked him, amused slightly.
“That couple that shares clothes, and says stupid cute things,” He answered.
I smiled.
“I love you, and you love me. So what if we become that couple?”
“I have nothing against being that couple…it’s just weird.” Stryker shrugged. “It’s a little weird.”
“I agree,” I nodded.
Stryker and I grabbed our bags for school, and raced down the stairs. We grabbed some toast that my mom made for us before she went to do whatever it is that she does now. The drive to school was filled with us laughing and singing with Izzy in the back seat. She hasn’t said much of anything since we told her. She’s rather quiet whenever she is with us. It’s weird, but I have almost gotten over it. It’s not worth worrying about.
Stryker and myself didn’t like putting on a show. Well, at least I didn’t. We acted like normal best friends at school. We are definitely not normal best friends. It’s getting harder to act too. For me, I want to shout to the roof tops that I’m in love with him. I don’t know exactly where Stryker stands with this whole thing. I just want to be with him. Is that too much to ask? To be a normal couple with my loved one.
“Why are people staring at us?” I asked, looking around.
Stryker looked a little uncomfortable.
“I don’t know. Ignore it?” He asked.
“Fine,” I sighed, walking straight up to our friends. Taylor walked quickly toward us, and I furrowed my brows at her.
“Guys, rumors have been spread.” She stated.
“What?” Stryker and I stated at the same time.
“Apparently someone saw you guys at the movies Saturday night saying how you were all over each other in the theatre.” She explained. “No one will say who it is exactly, but apparently it’s some guy from the football team. Chad told me,”
“Are you fucking kidding me?” Stryker sighed, running a hand through his hair. He shook his head and started to walk off, and quickly.
“Stryker!” I yelled after him.
He shook his head and kept walking away from me.
“Where do you think that he’s going?” She asked me.
I shrugged.
“I have no idea.” I answered honestly. “We were careful, I swear Tay.”
“I know that you guys probably were, but how long do you think that you could honestly keep this up?” Taylor asked me. “It’s been two months since you were involved from the beginning. It was bound to happen anytime soon.”
I sighed heavily.
“Stryker’s not okay with us, Tay.”
Taylor shook her head.
“Looks like he is going to have to get over it,” She retorted. “Cause it has spread like wildfire. It seems like everyone is believing it.”
“That’s bullshit!” I nearly yelled. “Why do people care if we’re dating? Why does he have to care so fucking much?”
“I don’t know, baby doll,” She smiled sadly. “Take that up with him.”
I rolled my eyes.
“I definitely will.” I replied, walking over to our friends.
“Dude, what’s going on?” Seth asked me the second that we got there. “There are rumors going on…and Stryker looked pissed.”
“I was trying to tell them that his pride was probably hurt,” Kaylie stated, covering it up quickly.
“Yeah…probably,” I answered honestly. Stryker doesn’t take stuff like this easily. “We’ll talk about it more at lunch okay?”
“Yeah,” Chad sighed. “So you two aren’t…”
“Um…no,” I answered curtly.
They nodded and took my word for it.
Stryker didn’t show up to first period. I didn’t see him in-between classes like I expected to. I was getting angry. I walked into the lunch room, feeling like an idiot when I saw him talking to some football player.
“Why in the hell would I like guys? That’s just fucking stupid, Justin.” He retorted, crossing his arms. Anger boiled up but I tried to cover it up. “Being gay is nasty anyway. Man, I don’t know who in the fuck told you this bullshit...but it’s not true.”
I got mad and smacked his shoulder with mine forcefully before walking right past him. I knew that it hurt him because my own shoulder was in pain. I wanted to punch his face in. I was pissed at him. He could have just said that it was a rumor and leave it at that. That fucker even went on to say how nasty it was? That douche bag. I got my food, and Stryker came up to my side.
“Asher…” He pleaded. “I didn’t mean it.” I ignored him. I got my food, but he stayed right beside me the entire time. He kept repeating how sorry that he was. I didn’t want to believe him. I was so fucking pissed at him. I know that I’m not over-reacting this time. I seriously want to beat his ass. It was un-called for. Is he still that much in denial? It doesn’t make sense to me, and it really hasn’t. I knew that it would be hard, but to toss me under the bus like that, it was stupid. “Asher, please talk to me?” He begged when we got to our lunch table. They went silent, and looked between the two of us. The entire lunch room seemed to watch. Wonderful, fucking nosey teenagers. I got aggervated, and slamed my lunch tray on the table.
“What in the fuck do you want to me to say Stryker?!” I yelled, causing more attention. I don’t normally yell. “What. Do. You. Want. From. Me.”
“I’m sorry, okay?!” He retorted back. “I didn’t mean for it to come out the way that it did.”
“No, I’m sick of hearing you say that you’re sorry!” I yelled back. “Do you know how fucking hard it is for me? Do you have any idea?”
He looked around uncomfortably.
“Can we please talk about this somewhere else?” He asked me quickly.
“No we can’t.” I argued back. “Stop running away from everything!”
“I don’t run away from everything!”
“Are you kidding me? Stryker, you’re so scared that it’s not even funny!”
“No, I’m not!” He replied, looking hurt and angry, which probably mirrored my own look.
“Yes you are! You’re way to fucking scared to admit your sexuality that it’s not even funny! You care way to much about what everyone in this hell hole thinks that you’re risking something that I know means so much more to you than they ever will.” I spoke. “I can’t do this anymore! I can’t be your secret boyfriend. I can’t stand by and watch you deny anything that has happened. I can’t stand by your side if you’re pushing me away from you!”
“You think that I mean to push you away?!” He yelled back. “I don’t, Asher! Dammit, you know how I feel. I don’t understand why that isn’t enough!”
“I’ve told you once, and I’ll tell you again; I can’t be with you if you aren’t willing to tell people. I’m sorry, and it’s killing me.” I huffed. “I can’t tell anyone that I love you because you’re too scared to say that you love me too.”
Stryker broke eye contact from me, and looked down at the ground. I was more aware now that people had figured it out. It wasn’t that hard, especially when we were yelling like we were in front of everyone. He finally looked back up at me, and I could see how upset that my words made him. I tried not to care. It was so hard. I didn’t want to break. I had to stand up for myself.
“I’m sorry,” He repeated, no longer yelling. “Please just…don’t…”
“We’re over,” I spoke with a shaky breathe. “I can’t…be with you, Stryk.”
Stryker turned around and pulled on his hair, and chewed on my lip. I watched him carefully for a minute while he avoided eye contact. I can’t imagine what was running through his head. He must have been freaking out on the inside. I can read him so easily now.
“Don’t, please, Asher,” He turned around and spoke. “I…I can’t handle this…without you. I-I love you, okay?” I chewed on my bottom lip. I kept waiting for him to say something else, but he stayed silent, watching me. “What more do you want?”
“I want you to admit everything.” I decided.
“Fine,” He shook his head. “I’m in love with Asher Blake. I’m so gay for him that it’s not even funny. We’ve been a couple for nearly two months. My mom didn’t really accept us, so I do live with him. I’ve had questioning feels for him since Freshman year. I’m the one that made the first move. I’m lost without him. He’s my best friend, but I’m so in love with him that it makes me sick to be without him. There. I fucking said it. I’m fucking in love with my best friend, and…I don’t…care.” He rambled to everyone.
A small smile formed on my lips, and he returned it. Being the true dramatic guy that he is, Stryker stepped in front of me, only inches away. He grabbed my shirt, and pressed his lips to mine tightly. I removed my crossed arms, and gripped onto the bottom of his shirt. The kiss was short, making me whine when he pulled away. He huffed and pressed his lips to mine again for a quicker kiss.
“I love you too,” I mumbled a reply before he let go of me.
What a fucking day.
♠ ♠ ♠

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