Oakleaf Academy For Boys (BxB)

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twelve

Lucky was sat behind the outdoor equipment shed with his new best friend. The two had their backs leant up against the wooden wall, their legs sprawled out before them, absentmindedly ripping up pieces of grass. It was peaceful out here, away from the chaos of the school, merely the sound of birds and the faint grumble of shouts from the courtyard.

“That’s really sweet, Lucky.” Benji pulled his knees up to his chest and wrapped his arms around them. “But I should head home for half term. My Mum needs me.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?” Lucky pried curiously.

“Y-You know, just that she misses me.” He carefully replied. “Your parents probably do too. I don’t want to intrude—”

“You’re not intruding.” He rolled his eyes. “I just don’t want you putting yourself in danger for no reason other than you being too polite to accept an offer!”

Benji froze, the grass clasped in his hand slipping through his limp fingers. “P-Putting myself in danger?” He whispered.

Lucky sighed heavily, casting his grey orbs onto Benji’s baby blue ones. “Save us both the time and don’t bother denying it, yeah?” He said dryly. “I know you have a shitty home life. You’re always jumping and giving me your food. You’re generous, like you’re trying to buy my kindness so I don’t beat the shit out of you. You never even talk about your parents, Pup. Just admit it.”

Benji was seconds away from opening his mouth and spilling a million different lies and excuses. But he stopped himself, knowing it’d be useless. Lucky had already figured it out, and no matter what Benji said, Lucky would know the truth. He wasn’t gullible enough to believe that Benji was fine. “Okay.” He muttered.

"Okay?”

“Well, what d’you want me to say?”

“I don’t know...something. Anything.”

“There’s nothing to say.” Benji whispered. “My Dad likes to hurt his family, so what? It happened every day to a million different people all around the world. There’s no use crying about it.”

“But it’s not right. You can’t just accept that—”

“Look, maybe I deserve it, alright?”

Lucky froze, his lips parted, his brows twitching into a frown. “You’re kidding...right?” He questioned uncertainly.

Benji sighed heavily and buried his chin between his knees, his freckled cheeks squishing in the process, “We’re all screwups here. We’ve all fucked up.”

“That’s completely different.”

“How?” Benji whispered softly. “I must have done something pretty shitty to end up here. So, maybe I deserve everything I get.”

“That’s not true. What could you have possibly done to—?”

“I almost killed him.” He uttered in a voice so small, it was barely audible.

“Who?” Lucky’s brows furrowed in confusion. “Your Dad?”

“I stabbed him.”

He didn’t try and defend his actions. He didn’t give an explanation or a brief description of events. He left it as it was. Plain and simple. Benji Cooper stabbed his Father — that’s all there was to it. Because at the end of the day, no one cares if it was self defence. No one cares if Mr Cooper deserved it for abusing his family. All anyone cared about was the fact that he was stabbed by his own son.

Lucky was silent. He leant back against the shed and tilted his head up to gaze at the sky. “I saw a baby bird this morning.” He said, his eyes following a flock of crows gliding across the cloudy sky. “They’re ugly lil’ things, aren’t they?”

Benji’s lips pulled into the faintest of smiles as he repositioned himself to face the stormy sky too, “I thought they were quite cute. All small and fluffy, y’know?”

“I don’t know how many baby birds you’ve seen, but this one looked like something straight out of a horror film. It was bald and squawking at me, as if I could help it.”

“And did you?”

“Fuck no.” He snorted, “What am I supposed to do?” They both chuckled lightly, staring into nothingness, the vague sound of laughter and chatter drifting over from the courtyard fading into the background. “Hey, Benj?”

“Hmm?”

“You said you had a boyfriend before.”

“Oh.” Benji blushed, fiddling with his hands. “Yeah.”

“What was he like?”

“A bit of a wanker really.” Benji sighed. “I mean, not at first...obviously. He was way out of my league, I should’ve known better, y’know?”

Lucky grinned, “Wow, of course. Of course you think that.”

“Think what?”

“That everyone’s better than you.” Lucky laughed, “You seriously think that’s true? ’Cause it’s really not.”

“Well, in some cases it is.” Benji protested. “This guy was like the fittest boy I’d ever met. He was older too.”

“How much older?”

“Three years.”

“And you were...?”

“Fifteen.” Benji admitted bashfully.

Lucky just rolled his eyes again, “You dated an eighteen year old when you were only fifteen?”

“M-Maybe.”

“What happened?”

“We had a good few months, but he got bored eventually. I found out he’d been seeing a bunch of other guys the whole time.” Benji shrugged.

“It is weird to date dudes? Like...different, I mean.” Lucky asked awkwardly.

“I don’t know. I’ve only ever liked guys.”

“I think Diesel’s friend might be a bit of a bender. What’s he called? Something Starr?”

“Quinn.”

“Yeah. Him.”

“Maybe.”

“You should fuck him. Or get fucked by him. Whatever you’re into.”

Benji’s jaw dropped, his eyes widening in alarm, ”What?”

“C’mon, you’re surrounded by boys, it must be torture—”

“It really isn’t—”

“I’m sure he’d be up for it.”

“We don’t even know if he’s gay! Even if he was, he wouldn’t be into me.”

“Seriously? More self depreciation?” Lucky laughed cynically.

Benji didn’t reply to his friend’s statement, merely remained silent and waited for the conversation to change. He and his old boyfriend never even got round to sex, and since the incident with his father, the idea of being intimate with anyone sent shivers down his spine. He knew Lucky wasn’t being serious (well, he hoped), but it freaked him out nonetheless.

Kit was sitting in class, his eyes twitching every so often, focussing on the blond boy sat a few rows ahead. His mind was spinning, giving him a throbbing headache as he tried to solve a problem on the board. He was stressed out about half term. Almost his whole life had been spent hopping between homes and despite the name, Kit didn’t have a real home. He was preparing himself for a week at Oakleaf by himself, once all the students and most of the teachers had left to spend time with their families.

He knew there would be a foster home waiting to take him in, but the idea of that truly repulsed him. He’d rather spend a week at Oakleaf than a week in a place where everyone hated him. And yet, after all the stress of half term, only one thing was on his mind.

Quinn Starr.

He was continuously telling himself that what they were doing was purely sex, nothing more, nothing less. And yet, he wanted to kiss him. Not because he wished to initiate physical contact in order to fuck his brains out. He wanted to kiss him merely to feel his lips against his own. He wanted to taste him and bask in his body heat, brush his hair out of his face and roll his eyes at dumb jokes.

But he couldn’t. Because Kit wasn’t gay and Quinn was. He couldn’t mess around with his feelings and then decide he was bored a week in. That would break Quinn into a million pieces, especially after he confessed his feelings a few weeks ago.

So, he sat at the sidelines, admiring from afar and enjoying their ‘strictly no strings attached’ relationship. And he hoped that one day, things would make sense again.

Diesel fiddled with his ripped sleeve, staring into the dim light of the storage cupboard. He wasn’t paying much attention to the guard, groaning softly in pleasure as a boy he’d recruited kneeled before him. The little plastic bag was tucked into his back pocket, ready to be distributed the second he left the room, but his mind was elsewhere.

He was thinking about his supposed ‘best friend’. Diesel had protected Quinn from day one, even throughout the countless attempted assaults. People thought Quinn was a arrogant snob with a pocketful of cash and loving parents. They were jealous, spiteful, bitter. They thought that by causing him pain, they’d somehow destroy the society which treated deprived kids as lesser beings.

But that wasn’t Quinn. He hated everything about his life and having money didn’t make him selfish. He was probably the kindest and most unnecessarily generous person Diesel had ever met.

But lately, he’d been acting like a bit of a prick.

Quinn usually spent all his free time with Diesel, save a few study hours. And if he wasn’t with Diesel, then he was cooped up in a corner somewhere, his nose in a book, a cigarette hanging from between his lips. But recently, the boys were behaving like a couple of strangers.

Quinn had been sneaking off at every chance he got, making up excuses and lying nonstop. And Diesel could tell - Quinn was the worst liar he’d ever met. But he couldn’t figure it out. He couldn’t understand what the boy could possibly be hiding from his best friend.

Plus, he’d stopped doing his hair. He left it messy nowadays, falling into his murky green eyes. That was odd in itself.

And no matter how confusing this situation was, Diesel knew he’d figure it out sooner or later. No one kept secrets from him.

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