Anytime, Anyplace


On the first nice day of March, it was inevitable that the quad would be crowded, that students would line the low stone wall that ringed it, jostling for position and joking noisily. Warmer weather meant that they bounced off each other with smiling gibes instead of hissed warnings as they made their way across the unevenly-paved square. It also meant that the sun was high and bright, glaring off the white stone as it peered over the spire of the administration building.

All of which meant that when Archer looked up in response to a shouted "heads" to find a frisbee coming at him, he tripped, resulting in both the frisbee bouncing off his forehead and his books spraying across the quad. Given the current set of circumstances, that fall was only to be expected and had nothing to do with the row of jocks showing off their bulging biceps in t-shirts.

Archer had noticed the jocks--it paid to be observant--but it was the frisbee and the flagstones and the sun that had made him trip, not the boy with the floppy blond hair who'd been watching him back.

The jocks laughed when he went flying, which was also to be expected. Slapstick comedy, such as he'd unwittingly performed, was universally amusing across all languages and cultures. Laughing at his fall didn't necessarily indicate ill humor towards him in particular, but there was no need for the boy with the floppy blond hair to call further attention to him by coming over.

"Are you all right?"

"Fine."

He stood up, which only brought him about four-fifths as high as the jock, and brushed at his pants. They seemed to be in one piece and his phone hadn't come out of his pocket and was also in one piece, thank God. It was a brand new Samsung with the Infinity Display, worth more to him than his pride.

The jock scrambled around picking up the books he'd scattered.

"Going to carry those for him, Jordan?" one of his friends taunted from his spot atop the stone wall.

A gay joke. Archer got it. It probably wasn't personal, as he didn't believe there was anything in his appearance that would make his sexual orientation obvious to strangers. Perhaps the boy with the floppy blond hair was gay, but more likely his friend had a sophomoric sense of humor which equated homosexuality with weakness. Lack of originality with respect to humor was a common failing in college-aged men.

Archer held out his hands for the books, but the boy with the floppy hair, who was apparently named Jordan, didn't turn them over.

"I could walk you to wherever you're going," he offered.

His friends hooted in the background as Archer physically reclaimed his books. "Why would you do that?"

Jordan didn't seem to have an answer, so Archer turned his back and resumed his walk across the quad.

"Wait," the man behind him called. Archer waited. "Are you sure you're OK? Maybe I should walk you just to be sure."

The peanut gallery burst out laughing again. It was too much. Archer had tripped and fallen, yes, but that didn't render him needful of an escort, nor did it justify the level of derision to which he was being subjected.

"Oh, fuck you," he said and then departed so quickly that he almost didn't catch Jordan's reply over the volley of laughter that accompanied it.

"Anytime, anyplace."

That was what Jordan said.

It was a joke, not an invitation, as Archer reminded himself repeatedly over the next few days, not that the disclaimer helped because he was definitely thinking about fucking Jordan now that the idea had been put in his head.

He wasn't always good at knowing when people were interested in him as opposed to when they were just pretending to be interested in him as a sort of joke, because feigning sexual attraction seemed like a very pointless joke to him, but Jordan's words had sounded sincere. He might be one of those straight-ish guys who figured it didn't count as gay if he topped, but being topped wasn't what Archer was thinking about.

He wanted to fuck Jordan, to hold him down and hear him--begging, begging--while he drilled him with his surprisingly big dick.

Most people incorrectly believed that dick size was directly proportional to height despite the multitude of studies which showed at best a moderate correlation accounting for no more than half an inch on average with a heavy distribution of outliers.

All of which information was easily accessible on the internet.

Anecdotally, and Archer knew the plural of anecdote wasn't data, but anecdotally, his dick was a very nice size and looked particularly large with his hand wrapped around it because his hands were proportional to his height. It was like using models with tiny hands in hamburger commercials so that Big Macs looked bigger, proving once again that everything was relative.

Archer refused to avoid that section of the quad with the row of jocks gracing the stone wall, but he did steel himself the next time he walked past them, making very sure to keep his eyes on his feet without looking like he had his head down out of fear, which was a tricky maneuver that required mentally mapping his next four steps and caused him to almost miss the fact that Jordan had fallen in next to him.

"Can I walk with you?"

"I'm going to the science building," Archer warned him.

"Oh, cool. Me too."

"Why?"

"I'm a biology major?"

Jordan didn't sound entirely sure he was a biology major, or maybe he wasn't certain that being a biology major was a good enough reason to go to the science building. It was in Archer's book. He wouldn't have pegged Jordan for a biology major but that was him stereotyping, which was rude and unscientific and led to incorrect conclusions such as the one he'd jumped to about Jordan only being on campus to look pretty and maybe win football games. It seemed every college was required to have a certain number of those people in order to put out brochures, but Archer was glad to learn Jordan wasn't one of them.

He was in physics himself, which made their interests adjacent, plus being a biology major should mean that Jordan would know that thing about dick size not necessarily being proportional.

"What year?" he demanded, in an attempt to determine how far along Jordan might be in his studies on that subject.

"Sophomore. You're a sophomore too, right? I've seen you around. I'm Jordan and you're Archer, right?"

If Jordan was following Archer to mock him, he'd left his audience behind, but Archer could still be reading him wrong. He'd found the best method for ascertaining important facts was simply to ask.

"Are you gay?"

"Yes!" Jordan's affirmation was both loud and certain, but then he softened it a bit. "Well, I'm bi, but that's gay enough, right?"

"The range of genders to which you're attracted isn't relevant as long as I'm included in one of them."

"You're definitely included."

Archer glanced over and found Jordan watching him back, which was likely to result in stumbling given the unevenness of the stones as he'd proven himself a few days ago. He turned his head back in the direction they were traveling. Jordan could conduct his own experiment on the importance of watching where you were going.

"I'm not going to blow you just because you've got a lot of muscles and floppy blond hair, you know." He felt it was best to make that clear. "It's a common misconception that men who are smaller or smarter are automatically bottoms. I happen to be a top. If we're going to fuck, it'll be my cock in your ass."

"I was going to ask if I could take you out to dinner, but OK. We could do that."

"Why would you want to take me out to dinner?"

"I think you're cute?"

"Why is there a question mark at the end of that sentence? I may or may not be cute by some objective measurement, but you prefaced your remark with the words 'I think' which puts it squarely in the realm of the subjective. You either think I'm cute or not. It doesn't require anyone else's input."

"I think you're cute. I was afraid saying so would make you angry."

"It won't if you mean it. If this is some kind of joke to make me feel bad, I'll be annoyed that you wasted my time."

"I mean it."

Jordan sounded breathless, as though he were struggling to keep up despite his longer legs. It was an erroneous assumption that a person with longer legs would automatically walk faster than a person with shorter legs, because speed was all about foot turnover which came from adding impetus to the back heel at push-off. Archer would've expected Jordan to know how to push off his back heel, given his apparent athleticism, but whatever sport he engaged in that made him look so pumped-up and perfect, it was probably all physical application and very little theory.

"You were in my philosophy class last semester," Jordan said. "Mr. Barnhardt? Ethical Treatment of Animals? I guess you didn't notice me. I don't talk a lot. But I noticed you. You said that thing about how we assume animals have more feelings than plants because they're closer to us in appearance which is the same fallacious reasoning the leads to racism."

Archer remembered. That had been an excellent point logically, though perhaps a bit far-fetched in terms of applicability.

"I don't always believe what I say," he warned Jordan, "but someone had to counteract Mr. Barnhardt's weepy sentimentality. Philosophy is not psychology. Philosophy is a time-honored discipline which brings coherence to what would otherwise be a chaos of factual information. In fact, there's evidence that atoms themselves may have certain moral properties. I hope to one day unify philosophy and physics into an overarching approach to ethical existence."

"I know. I read your blog."

That stopped him. Literally. He turned to Jordan who had stopped when he did. "You read my blog? All right," he agreed after a moment's pause to consider this new piece of information. "You can take me to dinner."

"And after dinner, maybe we could "

He waited for Jordan to finish. Sometimes people needed a moment to collect their thoughts and it was polite to give them that moment.

Jordan looked down at the ground before mumbling, "Maybe you could fuck me."

"Yes." Archer stuffed his hands into his pockets to disguise the fact that his nicely-sized cock was expanding at an alarming rate. "Yes," he repeated. "I could fuck you."

~~~~~~~

Jordan picked him up, which was an inappropriate application of outdated gender roles, or possibly just a courtesy, so he allowed it. They went to a pizza place off campus which didn't make sense since they were both on a meal plan, but spending money was a universally recognized mating ritual, so he allowed that too.

The conversation at dinner was spirited. Jordan listened to him, which more people ought to do more often, and when he gave Jordan his turn to talk, which he made sure to do at regular intervals according to social norms, Jordan had interesting contributions, although he had a tendency to drop his eyes and fiddle with the edge of his placemat if Archer made eye contact too long, which was a combination of endearing and arousing. Archer found himself doing it a lot and not always paying attention to Jordan's actual words.

After dinner they went back to Archer's dorm where Jordan lurked around until Archer finally said, "I thought I was going to fuck you." Jordan jumped for the door, trying to open it for him but since he had the keycard required to unlock it, the gesture failed. Strong as Jordan might be, even he couldn't open an unlocked door.

Once in his dorm room, Archer waited for Jordan to make a move. Then he remembered that he was supposed to be the top here, which probably meant it was up to him to make it. Jordan was doing the adorably shy thing again, looking at his toes in between quick peeks at Archer's face. Archer wanted to see him naked. He wondered if Jordan would be adorably shy about that too--try to hide himself behind his hands or something--and decided there was one way to find out.

"You don't think we should kiss first?" Jordan asked when Archer had him stripped to the waist.

Archer had figured he'd leave the kissing for after the undressing. It seemed inefficient to do it the other way around, but relationships required compromise, so he went up on his toes and got hold of Jordan's shoulders and pulled until Jordan came down to his level and kissed him.

And that was pretty nice, he had to admit--well worth moving up in the order of business. Jordan's mouth was warm and tasted like he'd snuck a mint in there on their walk back. His tongue had a rough texture that tickled at Archer's and his shoulders were round balls of firm muscle. He made a little sound of contentment and then sat down hard on Archer's bed like his knees had given out.

Archer went with it. He climbed on top of Jordan, straddling him, and that was nice too. It made their dicks line up and allowed him to hold Jordan's face still so he could go after it with more force. The harder he kissed Jordan, the more little noises came out of him, seeping out around the seal Archer had formed over his mouth. His fingers sort of scrabbled at Archer's hips like he wasn't sure where to settle them and he kept leaning farther and farther back, almost as though he were trying to get away except Archer was pretty sure he wasn't.

They landed together, Jordan on his back and Archer falling on top of him, and lying down was even better than the straddling had been except it was now obvious that Archer's original plan of getting their clothes off before the kissing started had been the better one. It was possible Jordan wasn't very experienced, or very logical--Archer wasn't sure which--but either way he'd clearly need Archer to guide him.

Archer sat up, stilling Jordan's reflexive attempt to follow him with a hand to his chest. It was a very nice chest. Felt good under his hand. But that wasn't the point. The point was to get organized.

He'd gone out and bought supplies that afternoon, which he now pulled out of his desk drawer and laid out on the bed. He'd also informed his roommate that he'd be commandeering the room for the evening according to the agreement they'd reached at the beginning of the semester for handling situations of this sort. When they'd made their agreement, he hadn't anticipated activating it himself but, as with health insurance, it was good to have a policy in place before you needed it.

The chances of him having someone like Jordan naked in his bed were statistically insignificant, but that was the thing about statistics. In an infinite universe, any event with a greater than zero percent chance of occurrence, no matter how small that chance, would ultimately occur. People who didn't understand statistics tended to call these lower-probability events miracles.

"You have a lot of muscles," he observed, even though the observation was trivially obvious.

"Do you like them?"

Muscles were an outdated way of measuring a mate's suitability. Brains were now significantly more useful than brawn when it came to survival, but the biological preference lingered and apparently he was susceptible to it, because he did like them.

"I want to lick every one of them," he told Jordan, which made Jordan smile. Archer smiled back. Then he proceeded to lick all the muscles he'd told Jordan he wanted to lick. There were a lot of them. Jordan, being a biology major and a jock, might be able to name them, and maybe someday Archer would ask him to, but not right now.

When he'd finished with the licking and gotten the rest of everyone's clothes disposed of while he was doing it, Jordan looked as hungry and needy in real life as he had in Archer's imagination, but maybe a bit of something else too, something like nervous.

He didn't know how much Jordan had bottomed. Maybe he hadn't. Maybe he'd followed the stereotypical role foisted on him up until now and had only topped. Or possibly he had bottomed before, but Archer wasn't going to ask. An exchange of sexual histories might have been a good prelude to finding themselves in bed together, but he liked the idea of it being Jordan's first time, so instead of launching into a sensible line of questioning, he said, "Nervous, big guy?"

"I trust you."

"Good, because I'm going to take care of you." Which he hoped was true.

He'd said he was a top because he knew he was. A person didn't have to kiss X number of men before he could call himself gay, and he didn't need to fuck X number of men before he could call himself a top. But he wasn't exactly an experienced top.

He'd done plenty of research, though, and had calculated the best angle of trajectory--factoring in the curve of his particular cock and taking into consideration the various positions in which he'd like to fuck Jordan--to hit someone's prostate, assuming it was located in the anatomically-expected position within a reasonable degree of variance.

He lubed up his fingers and set Jordan's feet wide on the bed so he could see what he was working with. Jordan didn't try to cover himself with his hands, but he did look away like there was something really interesting on the other side of Archer's dorm room, which there wasn't. Archer put his fingers on Jordan's chin and turned it so he could see into Jordan's eyes. It was important to monitor his partner's reactions. Communication was the key to a successful encounter.

Also, making Jordan look at him when Jordan didn't want to was hot.

Archer swallowed down the burst of arousal that threatened to swamp his common sense and brought a finger to Jordan's hole, watching him carefully as he pressed inside. That first moment of penetration was mirrored in Jordan's eyes, a sensory feedback loop between the sensation of slick heat against his finger and the glory of seeing his possession of Jordan's body written across his face.

He worked gently, adding a second finger, letting the two of them stretch Jordan incrementally. They had all night and though Archer's cock screamed for him to move on, his mind begged him to slow down, to write every moment of this night into his memory banks in searing detail. All the research in the world couldn't have prepared him for the actual experience.

When he crooked his fingers, he found Jordan's prostate right where it was supposed to be, and the motion had the appropriate effect on Jordan, though the effect it had on him was beyond what he'd anticipated. So much pride? love? anticipation, lust, heat. He wasn't good at identifying emotions, but the tightness in his chest seemed to encompass all of them.

He leaned forward and traced a kiss along Jordan's cheekbone as he brushed his fingers a little harder over that spongy constellation of nerve endings. Jordan arched up against him, bringing their chests together, a choked sound of incomprehensible longing bursting from him.

He wanted more of that, so he asked Jordan: "What? Tell me?"

"Please."

Yeah, that. "Please?"

"Please, Archer. Please?"

So, so sweet. So, so beautiful. So exactly what he'd imagined.

"Perfect," he told Jordan. "You're perfect."

He shifted back onto his knees and Jordan's eyes opened to watch him as he put on the condom. He'd practiced sufficiently that even his shaking hands didn't impede his execution.

"I'm going to give you what you want now," he told Jordan. "OK?"

Jordan nodded, so he lined the head of his cock up with Jordan's hole and pushed, just a little. Jordan's sphincter oozed open around him. It molded him perfectly as the head of his cock popped through, snapping shut like a vice around the bottom of his flare. Archer held there, admiring the way the shaft of his cock led up to Jordan's asshole and then just disappeared inside of it. A perfect joining, a seamless meld.

Jordan's fingers clutched tight on his arms, digging in with unspoken urgency.

"OK?" He asked again. He hoped like hell it was OK because the need to push in further was overwhelming. It was fuck or flee, and his vote was fuck.

"Fuck me," Jordan answered, his words perfect, his voice a little soft, his expression plaintive but unsure, and Archer slid the rest of the way in, trying to go slow, to appreciate every inch, but finding himself balls deep before he could blink.

It was so, so good. It was nothing like a Fleshlight or a fist, because the channel Archer had buried himself in was a man, a living body, a face and a voice and a buffet of muscles and a symbiotic need. This thing Archer was fucking wanted to fucked, as much as Archer wanted to fuck it. More even, if the way Jordan arched and tugged and moaned was any indication. Yes, Jordan was loving it and Archer was giving it to him and it was good, good, so good.

He fell forward, landing on top of Jordan's firm chest which was slick with sweat and heaving with hunger. Their bodies slipped against each other as he continued fucking in and out, working his hand between their torsos to find Jordan's sticky cock, rutting without any rhythm or thought, reduced to his animal self and communing with Jordan's animal self until the wetness of Jordan's release burst against his hand and he allowed himself the same release.

He probably didn't have to worry about smothering Jordan, not given their relative sizes, but withdrawal was a matter of courtesy even if he did sort of want to live inside Jordan for the rest of his life. He went over and threw out the condom, then retrieved the container of wipes he'd bought in consideration of their need for post-coital cleanup. He mopped up his hands and his dick and, regretfully, the trace of come Jordan had splattered across his stomach.

When he went back to the bed to offer Jordan the box of wipes, he found him asleep, his mouth open, his body lax and come-streaked, spread wide across most of Archer's small bed. Archer swabbed Jordan down himself. He doused the lights and pulled up the covers and found a way to wedge himself onto the bed with his head on Jordan's chest and their legs twisted together.

Miracle turned out to be a pretty good word for it after all.

~~~~~~~

The next morning he had to rush to bundle Jordan out of there because he hadn't thought to set his alarm early enough to take advantage of waking up with a naked man in his bed, a mistake he'd rectify next time. Jordan asked if they'd see each other again and he said, "Of course."

The evening had resulted in a highly satisfactory outcome. It should definitely be repeated at the first possible opportunity.

~~~~~~~

They were both naked. He'd proven the efficiency of immediate, comprehensive disrobing over the course of their encounters and Jordan now stripped on command, his cheeks turning red and his eyes peeping up to check on Archer's progress every time, as if it never got normal.

They were in Jordan's dorm today, with all the time in the world because Jordan's roommate had gone away for the weekend, and Archer planned to use the luxury to test his hypothesis that the volume of semen and force of ejaculation directly correlated with length of build-up. He'd never really been able to prove his theory on himself because he always gave in to orgasm immediately, but today he had a test subject.

He put Jordan on his back on the twin bed. Jordan's sheets were white, and Archer appreciated the contrast of Jordan's warm, sumptuously-toned skin against the cool, crisp linen. Jordan was a prime specimen, laid out but not restrained. If this were a dissection, he'd have Jordan's limbs anchored to keep them in place, but this was a seduction and Jordan was conscious, which was necessary for the sort of experiment he wanted to run, so he merely warned Jordan to stay still as he separated his legs and straightened his arms so they lay along his body.

"Is this going to hurt?" Jordan asked.

"I hope not." He was there to catalog pleasure, not pain.

He slicked up Jordan's dick, which was already hard. Though Jordan made a show of being too shy to undress, it got him fierce-hard as far as Archer could tell, considering he'd never seen Jordan's dick come out of his pants in any other state. Either undressing aroused him or Jordan just walked around like that all the time.

"What percentage of the time would you say you have an erection?" he asked, in an attempt to narrow down the possibilities.

"Around you? Too close to a hundred."

"Yeah?" That was flattering.

He had to admit he spent a lot of time around Jordan hard himself. That was anticipation and also appreciation. Jordan was gorgeous, even more gorgeous naked, and he got to see that now, which was pretty spectacular.

Right now, for instance, with his lighter hand on Jordan's darker dick and the wet, squelching sound of skin against skin filling the small space, and Jordan already squirmy, his balls tight against his body and his mouth open in that slack expression of helpless lust that really pushed Archer's buttons--this was spectacular.

"Does it ever hurt?" he asked Jordan. "Like, if I leave you hanging?"

"Ungh," Jordan said, which wasn't even a word.

He mentally recorded it as a yes. Occasionally he and Jordan saw each other when they didn't have an opportunity to get naked, and he always had to go straight home and beat off like mad to prevent a case of blue balls after, so it was affirming to know that Jordan had the same experience. How did heterosexual men ever figure out what they were dealing with?

Well, they could experiment, like he was doing.

He evaluated his subject--flushed skin, heaving breath, sub-verbal vocalizations. Yep, it looked like Jordan was about to come. He removed his hand from Jordan's dick.

"What?" Jordon spluttered, his hips chasing after it.

"How close would you say you are to orgasm? Like on a scale from one, where you're not aroused at all, to ten, where you're actually coming, would you say you're an eight? Seven and a half?"

"Nine," Jordan panted.

"Hmm, I'm not sure that's accurate." He lowered his hand and jerked it up and down Jordan's shaft a few more times. "See? You didn't come."

"I could," Jordan protested when he removed his hand again. "If you didn't stop."

"Exactly. You require more stimulation, but you're close. Let's call that a seven."

"Seven," Jordan repeated as Archer went back to jacking him. He closed his eyes and twisted his hips up, and Archer stopped what he was doing.

"This isn't going to work if you interfere. Promise me you'll stay still."

"Seven," Jordan repeated mournfully. "I'm not going to survive this, am I?"

"Promise you'll keep still?"

Jordan nodded. His squirmed his hips deeper into the mattress as if anchoring himself and gripped the edges of the mattress with both hands.

"Ready?"

He put his hand back on Jordan's dick which he noted was lying flat against his stomach again, no longer bobbing at a forty-five degree angle. He figured Jordan was back down to a four or five so he went at it hard, twisting his hand and working his palm over the head of Jordan's cock with each pass until they were back in the seven range, which he catalogued as including a deepening of color as well as the appearance of beads of sweat on Jordan's forehead.

"Seven?"

"Yuh."

"Little more then. Tell me when we're at eight."

"Eight, eight." Jordan's hands clawed at the sheets and his hips lifted, despite Archer having told him not to do that. Perhaps involuntary movements were one of the indications of being at eight.

He lifted his hands free since he wasn't ready to bring Jordan up to nine yet. Jordan whimpered and he chased after Archer--not with his hips this time but with his torso, leveraging himself into an abdominal crunch so he could lean his upper body against Archer's.

Archer put an arm under his back to help support his weight and let Jordan nuzzle into his neck.

"Hmm?" he asked, as he traced his hand lightly over Jordan's cock, too lightly to produce the answering shudder. Someone was definitely overstimulated.

"Kiss me?"

Archer wrapped his arm tighter under Jordan and helped lift him up high enough so they could kiss. His visual observations were hampered by Jordan's face being mashed into his, but he had to admit he enjoyed having those little moans made directly against his mouth as he ramped up stimulation again.

"Seven?" he asked into Jordan's mouth. Jordan sucked harder, like he could pull strength from Archer's body.

"Eight. Fuck." Jordan dropped back onto the bed and his hips came up again.

So, he'd been right. Involuntary movement was a sign of impending orgasm. Also, Jordan's mouth opened and his head tilted back as if he could suck in more air that way. His eyes squinched into wrinkled lines.

"Yeah," Jordan gasped. "That's it, that's--"

"Nine?"

Jordan didn't answer, but Archer was pretty sure about the nine so he let go. Jordan swore and his body collapsed in disappointment but, interestingly, his breathing got heavier. He'd probably been holding his breath, Archer decided. He'd heard oxygen deprivation could intensify the sensation of orgasm. Perhaps holding one's breath was an instinctive attempt at chasing pleasure.

Or maybe Jordan had just forgotten to breathe. He didn't look very coherent at the moment. He looked angry, Archer decided when Jordan opened his eyes and he had more features to judge by.

"Nine, right?"

"Yes, fuck you. Nine."

"Would you say, like, straight nine? Or nine and a half?"

"Nine and three fucking quarters."

"Oh, I doubt that." He trailed a fingertip over Jordan's cock which looked almost as angry as he did. It jumped at being touched but it didn't start spurting come, so he figured they had a ways to go yet. "Let's begin again. Now, this time ."

The next day, when he had a moment between classes, Archer pulled up his journal to record his findings.

Subject's arousal levels

Erectile firmness consistently measured

Pre-come was observed to increase in direct correlation with

He backspaced over everything he'd written and typed HAWT. After a moment's consideration, he added some exclamation points. That seemed to cover it.

~~~~~~~

Archer eyed Jordan across the quad, ignoring whatever Dave was nattering about. Research suggested that men found prospective partners more attractive than current partners, preferring the thrill of the chase and the conquest of the unknown over certainty and familiarity, but he hadn't found that to be the case. Every time they fucked, Jordan got a little hotter. The muscles, the floppy blond hair, the shy glance away and the bold request for more--those all belonged to him now.

There was another phenomenon at play, of course. Humans were socially conditioned towards loyalty, which contributed to the survival of the species as a whole and the survival of the family unit more specifically. The loyalty effect explained why people always thought their favorite sports team was the best despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

Archer thought Jordan was the best, but he had better justification for thinking so. Jordan actually was the best. He could write a paper.

He pulled out his phone to check his calendar to verify that he and Jordan had a date scheduled tomorrow. He knew they did, but he liked to double-check his appointments. It was a nervous tick that did not approach the level of OCD and was useful for keeping him on track, so that was fine.

Having verified the appointment, he put his phone back in his pocket. Dave nudged his elbow.

"What?"

"You've got the hots for that guy, don't you?"

"Yep." He absolutely did.

"Like you'd ever have a chance with a guy like him," Dave scoffed.

"I don't know on what rationale you're basing that opinion, but I can assure you that your conclusion is erroneous. That's my boyfriend."

"Boyfriend," Dave mocked.

"Boyfriend," he repeated. He and Jordan hadn't officially applied a label to their relationship but according to any commonly accepted definition of the term, Jordan was his boyfriend.

"Why aren't you talking to him then? Why're you sitting here with me?"

Archer had assumed that he and Jordan's friends wouldn't share common interests, but there he was stereotyping jocks again. Jordan had proven to have many insightful things to say, even aside from "fuck me" and "please" although those were his favorites. Dave had a point. Why wasn't he talking to Jordan?

"Because you know he doesn't want to acknowledge you in public," Dave supplied. "Maybe you're hooking up with him and maybe you're not, but he's not going to admit it in front of his friends."

"Who said that?"

"I'm saying it, and you know it's true."

"It's a simple matter to prove you wrong. I'll go over there and kiss him." Resolutely, he began his trip across the quad, his eyes fixed on Jordan who had yet to notice him coming.

"Don't." Dave grabbed at the long-sleeved flannel shirt he wore unbuttoned over his Blade Runner 2049 t-shirt.

"Why not?"

"If you really are hitting that, you sure as hell don't want to fuck it up. It's like that saying about the bird in the hand."

"That's a terrible analogy." He stopped moving so he could concentrating on making his point. "In that metaphor, you have a bird in your hand. If Jordan won't acknowledge me in public, then he's not in my hand, is he? He's the bird in the bush. Or the closet, as it were." Point made, he started walking again.

Dave held onto his shirt harder. "OK, how about the one about killing the goose who lays the golden eggs? Be glad for what you're getting."

Archer stopped again to consider. "That's closer. You're suggesting that my tapping Jordan's ass is like getting a golden egg and that if I walk over there and kiss him, the eggs will stop."

"Wait, you're tapping his--?"

Archer shook him off.

"But, here's where the analogy falls down," he explained. "Jordan's ass isn't the golden egg. Jordan himself is the golden egg. And if I can't walk up there and kiss him, then he's never coming out of the bush and I didn't have a bird in my hand in the first place."

"You're mixing your metaphors," Dave pointed out.

"I'll clean it up later. Right now I need to drag a golden goose out of a bush and make him lay some eggs."

Since Dave wouldn't let go of his shirt, he let it slip off his shoulders, which made him shiver. Jordan only had a t-shirt on himself, but he was more muscular and muscles, despite common misconceptions to the contrary, retained warmth better than fat, not that Archer had any fat to keep him warm either.

The thing about them both being in t-shirts was how apparent the contrast in the size of their arms was. Those were Jordan's arms, and these were Archer's. And there was Jordan standing up to greet him, the smile dropping from his face as Archer stalked closer, and those were his friends, standing up too, as though Archer might be an actual threat.

Archer didn't know what was going to happen, but there was no point in theorizing what could easily be determined so he didn't stop until he was directly in front of Jordan.

"Kiss me," he commanded.

"Anytime, anyplace," Jordan said, just before he did. Then he turned Archer around and introduced him to his friends.

"So this is the legendary Archer," one of them said.

"Thank God you took pity on this lovesick fool," another one chimed in.

"He had it bad."

"Still does have it bad," Jordan said into his ear.

Archer smiled and beckoned Dave over. He had it bad too, but in this case bad was good. The English language was funny that way.


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