Since Mark left Cape Town for Johannesburg, the only info I'm getting from Cody about Mark is via their phone convos, which is not sufficient for me to write the story from Mark's perspective. So, in the meantime, Mark's story will be told by Kyle. Obviously, Cody's email also includes lots of info about Wingnut, but I'll exclude that stuff from this story 'cause it'll only conflict with the Wingnut story. Make sense to you? Cool. Away we go! MrB
Busy, busy, busy. That was the only way I was gonna handle Mark not being here. Luckily, I had a pretty full life, so I managed to stay on top of the situation. Besides, Mr B had given me a fucking earful about being strong, not just for my sake, but for the sake of all my friends as well as my folks.
It had become routine for me to pop into the coffee shop before work each morning to meet with Sam, the waitress, and some of the guys from work. But on this particular Monday morning, I skipped coffee 'cause we had a staff meeting at the shop, mainly to familiarize ourselves with some new clothing lines. The other reason was that one of the guys had damaged some merchandise. Nobody would admit to being the culprit, so we were all getting a dock in pay to compensate the boss. That was such a load of shit 'cause I knew who the guilty party was, but I wasn't gonna rat on him 'cause I had to work with the dude. And I knew what a shit he was. Prob was we got along quite well together.
Had an OK weekend. Steph slept over on Friday night, which was pretty cool. First, we went to Wipeout, where we had a few drinks and played pool. Hey, that was one of the really neat things about Steph; she not only surfed, she also played pool. Like a bud and a girlfriend all rolled into one.
We met up with Ross, my old school buddy and last year's captain of the swim team. He was telling us about his starting university in about a month, but that he still had time to compete in the upcoming Old Boys Vs The School Swimming Comp. He was totally amped about it.
"You spoken to Mark about it?"
"Mark's working in Joburg."
"He's what? That shit hole? What for?"
I told Ross all about Mark's leaving Cape Town to work on building a yacht up there. Ross could hardly believe his ears.
One of the great things about having Steph sleep over was that I didn't have to put out the spare mattress. It was pretty cool 'cept we couldn't make as much noise as we normally did 'cause we'd make my folks all horny. :)
Saturday, I worked an extra shift and got home late. Kept me busy, though. Steph and I went to a movie that night and saw Wingnut and his gang there. That little dude could easily have been be a movie star with his spiky hair and his good looks. But that wasn't the end of the grommet for the weekend... he woke me at 5am Sunday to go cycling. He had to be kidding, right? Nope. Pushy bugger.
The following night, I was fixing a ding in my board, and talking to Wingnut, who also had a ding in his, when the phone rang. It was Mark, and I really let him have both fucking barrels for not phoning me earlier. So what did he do? He fucking laughed at me!
"Don't laugh! I miss you big time... prick."
"Big prick... don't forget that."
"And I've got a big mouth. Right?"
"You're fucking disgusting. You know that?"
"Yeah, I know... so tell me everything."
"We're in the middle of nowhere over here, in a place called Midrand, fucking miles outa the city."
"Cool... so you can behave."
"I'm fucking bored shitless, Kyle, and I need to hurry up and get my driver's license. But this place I'm staying in is pretty damn neat. I've got this huge fucking room with a walk-in robe. It's like something out of a movie. This dude is gonna buy me a TV for my room. It's already got a small hi-fi in it."
"He's after your body."
"OK, so here's the buzz. And don't you say a fucking word to anybody or I'll come over there and break your legs."
"I was right. He's after your bod. Tell him it's mine."
"Shut the fuck up for a minute! The second day I was here, he was showing me around, and he says right to my face that I've got quite a well-developed body."
"So he didn't notice back in Cape Town? Yeah, right."
"Shuddup, Kyle. So, I thought, 'well, fuck this, I need to ask him straight out if he's gay'. So he says no, he's not, but he's always been interested in being with a guy, and he's sure he's bi. I told him I don't have a prob with that. But he keeps on and fucking on about being interested in spending a night with a guy."
"A guy? Which guy?"
"He's got a fucking hot chick, though. She's about twenty, and, fuck, Kyle, she looks like a model, so I don't know what his case is."
"I fucking told you, didn't I? Come the fuck home where you're safe!"
"Safe from what? You? Yeah, right. Listen up. He tells me how fucking hot I am, and would I mind if he like touches my shoulders and stomach. Anyway, he's desperate, so I told him that if he touches my stomach I'm gonna fix his fucking jaw for him."
"Good. Now tell me he's fat and fucking ugly and gross."
"Nope. He's not any of that. But he's like forty or something. Pretty good bod for his age. Spends ages in the gym. And that's another thing... he says he'll get me a gym membership. He reminds me a bit of your dad... like a recycled teenager."
"Come the fuck home!"
"Chill out, Kyle. Do you really think I'm gonna let this dude get into my pants? Anyway, he's pretty cool, Kyle. I don't think he's gonna try anything... and he's pretty nice to me. Brings me coffee in the mornings. YOU NEVER DID THAT!"
I enjoyed listening to Mark's laughter before I responded. And I could picture his face. How I loved that handsome face, and that dimpled grin. "Coffee in the mornings?"
"Yeah, and he sits on the bed and chats. So he gawks. So fucking what? Before I met you, that would've freaked me out. If you'd been here, you would've gotten a kick outa him getting a fucking erection when he stares at me."
"Hey, he tries to hide it... but it's nature, my bro."
"Just watch out... he might drug you or something."
"Nah... he wouldn't. Hey! You must see this fucking ship he's building here. I don't know how they're gonna get this thing down to the sea. It's fucking enormous! Just a shell at the moment, so there's a stack of work to be done."
"Ah, fuck! So you're gonna be away forever!"
"Nope. When I need some sex, I'll fly down there to see you. It's as hot as hell here, and dry. Last night we had this electrical storm. Awesome!"
"Cool. I can smell the sea from here."
"Yeah... it's your blood you're smelling."
"Can I phone you there? What's the number?"
"He's buying me a cell phone while I'm working here. He says I can just keep it."
"He's fucking buying you, Mark."
"Fuck that. I think he knows that's not gonna happen. Anyway, as soon as I've got the cell, I'll give you the number."
"Fucked Carol on Friday night... said it's the best she's ever had."
"Yeah, right. With that tiny, white thing? She use tweezers to get it?"
That totally cracked me up, and it took a few moments before I could speak again. "Fuck, I really miss you," I admitted. "Can't you get down here for the school's old boys swim comp?"
"Do you really?"
"Yes, Kyle... I do, really. Honest."
"So you miss me?"
"Hey, we're bros, right? Of course I fucking miss you! I phoned you, right? Hello? This is Mark here."
"Do you jack off thinking about me?"
"Well, do you?"
"You're fucking outrageous... totally."
"How often is sometimes?"
Mark and I chatted for ages. I kept inventing convo just to keep him there so that I could enjoy listening to his voice for as long as poss. I loved that voice. I loved him.
Finally, he said, "I've gotta jet, Kyle. I don't wanna take advantage of this. I'll try to phone again during the week. And don't worry. OK? I'm not stupid or naive. I know where this dude's coming from, and he really is cool."
Putting the phone back on the hook was like watching the bus pull away from the bus station. *Poof* Gone again. I was battling to handle Mark being away, but I guessed it had to be 'chin up'. I stared at the phone for a while, and imagined being able to crawl through the wires to get to him... popping outa the phone at his end instead of being just a voice. That would've been so fucking excellent. But, hey...
Truth was, though, I'd never realized just how hard handling Mark's leaving was gonna be. I was trying my best to be good, and wrote Mr B about how much effort I was making, but sometimes the downers would just suddenly happen and catch me by surprise... like the one last night. They happened as soon as I imagined never seeing Mark again. But, as Mark always said, "That's life. Handle it." I guessed the other option was for it to handle you.
"I can understand why Mark would say that," Mr B wrote. "You've led a charmed life by comparison to Mark's. His dad walked out when he was just a boy, then in walked shitforbrains. You never had to come home to a rubber hose, mate... you always came home to a family that loved you. So it's not hard to see where Mark's coming from. And you've gotta hand it to him. He rose above all that crap -- all the attempts to intimidate him, to make him feel worthless -- and survived. So when he says things like, "That's life," which pisses you off, you've gotta remember that his attitude is what saved his sanity."
B was right, of course. The old fossil was the kinda dude who'd step into the ring while Mark and I were beating the crap outa each other, and try to talk some sense into us. B was a total wuss 'til he was called upon to help a mate, then the wuss disappeared, and he was like instant Super B. Y'know, like Clark Kent... 'cept B dashed into a phone booth, stripped, and wrapped a towel around his waist. Crazy dude. Totally off the fucking planet.
But it wasn't just B who was helping me cope with this whole Mark thing. Wingnut's grinning face kept bobbing up outa the blue, ordering me to do this or that -- cycling, or swim training for the School Swim Gala. And Steph had been totally fantastic. She knew how much I was missing Mark, even though she didn't know the physical extent of our relationship. Or did she? Hmmm.
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