Quinn was sprawled out across his bed, his eyes scanning the words in a book his class were meant to read for English. He was almost certain he’d be the only one to make such an effort as to even skim the blurb. He sighed heavily when he heard a knock on the door. It was either Diesel after forgetting his key again, his boyfriend feeling horny again or a stranger asking for a lighter again.
However, what he wasn’t expecting was the boy who’d sucked his best friend’s face off the night before. “He’s not here.” He told Benji simply, ready to slam the door in his face.
“Wait!” Benji protested, wedging his foot in the door so it wouldn’t shut, wincing in pain shortly after. “Can you help me with something?”
Quinn rose his brows in surprise, “What’s up?”
“The pills Eli—D-Diesel keeps in his pillowcase.” He said quietly.
“Yeah, what about them?”
“I’ve fractured or...or broken a rib or something. It happened a while back. He said I could take some, so could I just—?”
Quinn blocked his path before he could enter the room. “Diesel doesn’t just hand those things out.”
“He told me I could—”
“And I think you’re lying.”
“P-Please, Starr.” Benji begged.
“If you’re just using him to get drugs then—”
“I’m not.” Benji quickly defended. “I swear. I-I’m sorry you saw me kiss him last night, I wasn’t thinking.” He hastily apologised. “I promised I’m not using him for anything.”
Quinn sighed, glanced over his shoulder at Diesel’s bed, and then back at Benji. “He’ll kill me if you’re lying.”
“I’m not lying.” Benji said firmly, wishing he could believe it himself.
“So, if I ask him when he comes back, he’ll be totally fine with it?” Quinn challenged.
Benji faltered slightly, his eyes falling to the floor, “Y-Yeah.”
Quinn rolled his eyes. “Well, I’m feeling nice today, so if you leave now before Diesel gets back, I won’t tell him you were here trying to steal his drugs. Yeah?”
Benji sighed heavily, “Okay.”
“Just head to the library or something, Pup. Distract yourself from the pain, you’ll be fine.”
“We have a library?” He asked in surprise.
Quinn snorted, “Yeah. Next floor up. Never been to it myself but I’ve heard it exists.” He shrugged.
“Th-There’s another floor?”
“Fucking hell, Pup, you’ve been here a whole term now.”
Benji blushed and shot Quinn one last smile before taking off. He strolled to the end of the corridor, past the showers and another hall of dorms he didn’t know existed. He eventually reached a small shadowed staircase, looking disused for years. The steps creaked beneath his weight as he climbed them until he came face to face with a locked door.
Dusty wonky letters were plastered across the entrance; ‘Bibliotheca’. But a heavy padlock sealed it shut, rust growing around it. Benji shoved the door a couple of times, ramming into it with his shoulder before giving up with a defeated sigh. From the looks of it, no one had stepped foot in Oakleaf Academy’s library in years.
He turned back and headed for his dorm, deciding to take a quick nap before afternoon lessons began.
Ironically, Lucky was unlucky enough to be paired with none other than Jake Wesley in English class. “Why do I have to play Desdemona?” He complained. The pair were meant to be reading through a scene of Shakespeare’s ‘Othello’ and making notes along the way. That, and ignoring the fact that Jake had beaten Lucky up not too long ago.
“Because you do.” Jake replied simply.
Lucky sighed and forced the words out, “My dear Othello!”
“If after every tempest comes such calms, may the winds blow till they have wakened death. If it were now to die, ’twere now to be most happy.”
Lucky skimmed the words with his silver eyes and gripped his pencil tighter, “Okay, so basically that means that—”
“Yeah, I know, mate. It’s pretty self explanatory.” Jake interrupted.
“Fine.” Lucky spat. “Don’t benefit from my extensive knowledge on Shakespeare then. Your loss.”
“Can we just keep reading?” He asked impatiently, jotting down notes absentmindedly.
“The heavens forbid but that our loves and comforts should increase, even as our days do grow.” Lucky read monotonously. “That’s ironic, isn’t it?” He snorted.
“It’s intentional.” Jake noted blandly. “It’s called foreshadowing.”
“I know what foreshadowing means.” Lucky informed him. “And in this case, it means they’re both deluded because soon enough, they’re both going to be dead.”
Jake just nodded simply. “Hey...you’re Steel’s roommate, right?”
Jake’s head was spinning. Sebastian was his mate; they smoked together, they drank together, they picked on people together. Suddenly, the boy never had time for him; all he ever did is hang out with his roommate. Next thing he knows, Sebastian tells him he’s gay.
Lucky had something to do with it. He knew it.
“No reason.” He brushed it off nonchalantly. “It’s your line.”
Benji was looking dazed when Lucky saw him sat in the canteen, playing with his food mindlessly. “What’s up? You look tired.”
“I just woke up.” He yawned. “Did you know we have a library?”
Lucky scoffed, “No, we don’t.”
“Yeah, we do.” Benji corrected. “It’s on the third floor—”
“There isn’t a third floor.”
“Yes, there is.”
“No, there isn’t. I’ve been here a whole term now, Benj. I’d know if we had a third floor.”
Benji rolled his eyes incredulously. “It’s locked, I don’t reckon it’s been used for years. I wanna see what’s inside. There could be hundreds of books in there for all we know.”
Lucky shrugged and stabbed his pasta hungrily. “I’m sure you’re skinny enough to crawl through the crack under the door.” He teased before waving his utensils at Benji’s untouched tray of food, “Eat.”
Benji nodded obediently and quickly began to eat. “Lucky, something happened last night.” He admitted heavily, his words shaking with trepidation. “It’s about Diesel.”
“What’d he do? Steal your clothes so he could inhale them as he slept?” Lucky asked in a bored tone.
“What...?” Benji frowned in confusion before waving it off. “H-He kissed me. Well, no, I kissed him. But that’s only because he kissed me the other day.” He whispered hurriedly, his eyes darting around the canteen to check no one was listening. “If that makes sense.”
“It doesn’t.” Lucky’s brows furrowed curiously as he stopped shovelling food into his mouth. “Diesel doesn’t have a soft side. He wouldn’t just...would he?”
“I don’t know. He said he...” Benji paused, his lips curling into a small smile at the warm memory, his chest tingling with happiness. “He said he liked me.”
“But that’s ridiculous.” Lucky said plainly. “What’s he playing at? It’s not like you’d ever fancy someone like him anyway.”
Benji blushed in embarrassment and gave his friend a guilty, apologetic look. “I-I said I liked him back.” He whispered.
“What?” Lucky exclaimed. “Benji!” He hissed.
“You don’t know him like I do—”
“I know he’s a sociopath—”
“Yeah, and how do I know Steel’s not?” Benji shot back. “I never once questioned you for dating someone I knew next to nothing about.”
“Yeah, well...” Lucky stumbled over is words. “Sebastian is different. I know he is.”
“And I know Diesel is.” Benji said. “If you’re happy, I’m happy. Why can’t you do the same for me?”
Lucky growled in annoyance, “Fine!” He decided. “Just be careful, Pup. Please.”
When they were finished eating, Benji headed off to chemistry while Lucky headed back to his dorm. He was done for the day; his afternoon consisted of free periods and he was craving a nap.
When he opened the door, he found Sebastian asleep on his bunk, his arm spilling over the side of the bed, his shirt untucked and tie laying forgotten on the floor. Lucky smiled faintly and crossed the room, kicking his shoes off and peeling the duvet away from Sebastian’s body. He slipped in beside him and snuggled up to his warm body, his head resting on his hard chest, his blue hair tickling the boy’s chin.
Sebastian instinctively tightened his arms around the smaller boy and held him close. And that was all Lucky needed in order to drift off into a deep slumber, feeling safer than ever in Sebastian’s protective grip.