The Bartender

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Chapter Four

We left the school to Kyle’s house via my car. Kyle drove since I didn’t know where he lived. There was silence throughout the journey but it was a comfortable one, at least, for me. I was glad that we had been able to talk things over even though it was because I cut. Now that I thought about it, it didn’t seem like a bad idea. But I knew not to do it again. I didn’t want to end up in hospital. Not again.

When we got there, I was a bit surprised. It was a nice house, but there was no car in the driveway. That meant Kyle’s parents were not home, I thought. When I went inside, I realized that the living room was messy. There were clothes laying around, on the floor and couch, packs of chips which were finished, also lying around and an empty pizza box. Strange, because I’ve always known Kyle to be a tidy person. I scrunched my nose in disgust as the smell hit me.

I looked up to see Kyle in the kitchen and he didn’t even look bothered. After tip toeing to avoid stepping on anything, I made my way to him.

“Where’s your mom?” I asked.

Kyle shook his head. “She doesn’t live here”. I swear I saw a hint of pain flicker through his eyes. It was gone in a flash though, as if it wasn’t even there.

“What do you mean?”

I sensed a little hesitation from him. We had a lot to catch up on. I needed to know what was going on in my best friend’s life. I didn’t want to make him uncomfortable as we just started our friendship.

“You don’t have to tell me if you don’t want to” I told him. “Only when you’re ready” I assured him.

He nodded and handed me a can of soda which I took after muttering a thank you.

“But, what you do need to tell me is, what the heck is going on here?” I asked gesturing with my hands to show him that I was talking about the living room.

Kyle chuckled. “Brian”.

“Who’s Brian?” My curiosity had me there. I took a sip of my soda and leaned against the kitchen counter.

“We live together”.

“As in roommates?” I questioned making him nod. “Okay, but that doesn’t explain the mess back there in the living room”.

“Let’s just say, he has this strange and fake allergy to neatness. But he’ll come around”. He chuckled as if it wasn’t a big deal.

I only nodded. However, I kept wondering about who this Brian was and why Kyle wasn’t living with his mom. Or dad for that matter. I knew that his parents got divorced before he moved from St. Lawrence. But why would he be living alone? And why did his roommate live like such a pig? I gagged. Internally, of course.

I am a very neat person. I didn’t have OCD but I did like to keep my surroundings clean. I kept everything well arranged. Kyle was also neat, since I had learnt the art of organizing from him. And he was a pretty good teacher.

“You coming?” Kyle asked.

“What?” I looked up at Kyle who was already on the stairs. I must have zoned out when I was thinking. I looked around for a bit and I noticed that there were no rooms downstairs, except the living room, the kitchen, and a bathroom. So the bedrooms might probably be upstairs.

“I said let’s go up to my room” Kyle replied, already leading the way.

I nodded even though Kyle couldn’t see me since his back was turned to me. After chugging the remains of my soda, I put the can in the small bin by the kitchen counter and rushed up to join my best friend. We had so much to catch up on. I wanted to know why Kyle came back and why he was living alone. But I decided not to bring that topic up, since he seemed uncomfortable when I asked at first.

Kyle’s room was nice. The king sized bed was by the window, so you could sit and look outside, there was a desk, and a chair. The carpet was woollen and white. His closet was closed. The books were well arranged on his desk and his bed was well laid. Exactly like Kyle. It had a nice scent to it. Probably his Cologne.

I tugged off my shoes and sat on the bed. I watched as Kyle put on a movie on his laptop.

“What are we watching?”

“I don’t know? What do you want to watch?” He asked me.

I pondered for a while before answering. “Maybe Sleepy Hollow. I haven’t watched the season 3 yet so if you have it”.

“Why didn’t you just watch it on TV like everyone else?” he asked.

“You know I like to binge watch seasonal movies” I said rolling my eyes. Watching a series weekly was a pet peeve of mine. I’d rather sit through a 24-hour long series done wait for the next episode to air. I hate having to wait for stuff. The suspense is the worse.

“Of course, how could I forget?” he chuckled. Kyle had it on his laptop already which I was thankful for because I didn’t want him to pay for anything.

“It’ll take a while to load so I’m gonna get some chips. What do you like? Cheetos?”

“You know it” I smiled at him. I’ve always loved Cheetos. They make me melt inside. I sighed dreamily.

Kyle laughed as he went out the door.

I took the time to look at my surroundings. This room was definitely much better than Kyle’s old room at their old house. That was four years ago and we were 14 by then so a lot had changed. I shifted a bit on the bed and I felt a book nudging my bum.

Taking it, I looked at the cover and it looked like a diary. Since when did Kyle start keeping a diary? I opened the first page. I knew it was a breach of privacy but I was intrigued as to why my best friend would keep a diary, or a journal, whatever it was.

The first page read:

“This is the property of Kyle Summers. Keep your filthy paws off it. Close it. Now. I mean now! I know I’m not the one reading this book because it is my book, and why the hell would I read this part? I know right? Ugh! But hey, you are not supposed to be here. Just like, close it and go back to whatever shit hole you came from. This is private. It is confidential. Please close it. Now.

CLOSE. THE. FUCKING. BOOK!

Yours Sincerely,

The One, The Only,

Kyle Summers.

Bye!”

I giggled as I set the book back. Right on time too. Because Kyle entered as soon as the book was out of sight. He tossed a packet of Cheetos to me and checked to see if the series had finished loading. It had. He put the laptop on his bed and sat next to me.

Putting my head on Kyle’s shoulder, I shifted a bit to get comfortable. Just like old times. I smiled at the thought. Now, nothing bothered me anymore. I didn’t worry about Kyle not wanting to be my friend anymore, I didn’t worry about Niall and his sinful life and I wasn’t in the least bit bothered about school. I was living in the moment.

What annoyed me though, was that Kyle’s phone kept ringing and buzzing. I wanted to know who it was but I didn’t want to come off as pushy. This was the first best friend time I had got since Kyle moved back and I wasn’t going to waste it. Besides, Kyle was discrete about who called and who texted so I didn’t bother to ask.

I must have dozed off after a while because the next I thing I know; I’m living in a beautiful mansion with my family. Not my real family, but I guess the future one. I had two kids, a boy and a girl but my wife was nowhere to be found. My dream however was interrupted when I heard the bell at the front door ring.

I stirred awake. I wasn’t fully awake though. I heard muffled voices but I wasn’t bothered. I yawned and stretched as I sat up on the bed and waited for Kyle to come back.

Kyle came back wearing boxers and to be honest, I was quite surprised at how much Kyle had grown. He had a wonderful body, his packs were gorgeous. It gave him that muscular look which was sexy and hot as hell. I gulped.

I was somewhat shocked at myself for noticing these things about my best friend. But I brushed it aside. After all, I hadn’t seen him in a long time so it was kind of normal wasn’t it?

“So when am I meeting this Brian?” I asked, hoping to get thoughts of my best friend being sexy out of my head.

Kyle checked the time on his phone. “He’s at work now”.

“Work? What’s the time?”

“9:00pm. Why?”

“9?!” I exclaimed. “What the Fuck?! Have I been sleeping for that long?” I don’t sleep this much.

“Well, you were tired I guess” Kyle smiled reassuringly.

“I need to text my mom or something”.

“I called her. Told her you’ll be sleeping over”.

“I am?”

“Yeah? Don’t you want to?”

“Sure. I will”

I grinned and took off my flannel. I left my bracelets on though because I didn’t want Kyle to see the intensity of what I had done. I rubbed his eyes. Then he stretched. I guess I was that tired.

“But I really want to meet this guy. Like why are you staying with him?”

“Long story. We can go now if you want”.

“Okay. Did you go back for your truck?” I noticed that he rushed off and didn’t properly answer my question but I decided to let it go. I know that he will tell me in due time.

“Yeah. You’re a really deep sleeper”.

“What can I say? I was tired”.

Kyle just smiled as he looked for clothes to wear. I was lost in my thoughts again. I had been doing a lot of thinking of late. But at this moment, what really bothered me was how Kyle was able to live alone. And then, Kyle’s phone rang again. Taking it, I looked at the caller ID before handing it over to Kyle.

Kyle answered though and I noticed that he didn’t want to talk, with me being there so I got up and went to the bathroom adjacent to the room. Closing the door behind me, I stood behind it trying to hear what Kyle was saying. I was very curious and I couldn’t help but eavesdrop on his conversation.

“I’ll see you tomorrow at school...come on, don’t...no. It’s nothing like that. What? No. You know I wouldn’t do that. No. Tomorrow. I’m sorry. Don’t come...please don’t. Just tonight. Good. I uh... lo… uh… talk to you tomorrow”.

That was weird. I had this strange feeling that Kyle was going to tell Niall that he loved him, but that’s just wrong. And he also kept saying no to him. Did he not want him to come over because I was here? Well, I wasn’t planning on hurting Niall, if that’s what Kyle thought. At least not out of school.

“Aiden, you ready?” Kyle shouted from his room.

“In a minute!” I shouted back. I flashed the toilet so it would seem as if I used it before making my way back to the room. Kyle was already dressed in faded blue skinny jeans, a black T-shirt which hugged him tightly with a pair of white sneakers. He looked so handsome and quite grown for his age. It’s probably the hair. I smirked. It may seem as though I was admiring him but I couldn’t help it. It felt weird not to.

“You ready?” Kyle asked after I out on my flannel.

“Yeah, but where are we going?”

“A club”.

My eyes went wide as soon as he said that. “A club?”

“Yeah. He’s a bartender. Do you have your ID with you?”

I nodded but took out my wallet to check anyway. “Yeah but why do I need it?”

“Because it’s one of those high profile night clubs. They don’t just allow anyone in there and you have to be of legal age.“.

“Oh”.

I followed Kyle out of the house but before we left, I realized the living room had been cleaned. Thoroughly, may I add. I smiled. Well at least, we won’t be sleeping in a stinking house.

We got into Kyle’s car and he drove us to the club. When we got there, I was quite surprised. I hadn’t been to one before. The bouncers were really big. Like tall and muscular and just, big.

Looking behind me, I saw Kyle talking to one of them as if they were friends. After a while, the guy allowed us in. I clung to Kyle because I wasn’t used to the atmosphere. I had just heard a few stories about what happens in clubs. You know, the fights and all.

“Relax” Kyle said rubbing his fingers over my arm.

I only nodded and followed Kyle through the many people who we’re dancing over to the bar stand. Looking around, I felt my heart leap into my stomach. There were no girls.

“Dude” I called out to Kyle. “Where are all the girls?”

Kyle just chuckled. “In their side of the club”.

I didn’t understand but I wasn’t bothered so I just nodded and turned to the bartender.

“Hey” I called to him and he looked at me with a smile making me gulp. “Can uh, can you make a mojito?”

The guy smiled at me and for some reason, my stomach fluttered. “Oh I can. Question is, can you drink a mojito?”

What the hell did he mean by that? I asked myself. I raise an eyebrow at his question. “I fucking can” I answer as if I was determined to get the drink at all costs.

He gives me a curt nod before holding out his hand. “ID?”

Taking out my ID, I handed it to him. The guy just snickered as he looked at it and I felt my face heat up in embarrassment. Did he think I was too young or something? I didn’t know why but that made me feel bad about myself. It’s as if I wanted him to like me which was weird because I didn’t know why.

Giving my card back to me, he smirked. “Can’t serve alcohol to a minor” he said.

I smacked myself mentally for forgetting that I need to be 21 before taking alcohol. I’ve never had to deal with this before.

“It’s just rum” I said rolling my eyes and he looked at me unamused. He stared me down for a while and I was getting nervous. “Can’t you make one with a little less rum?” I ask and he chuckles.

“I’m not trying to fucking lose my job here”.

I sighed and rolled my eyes. “Sure”. What was it with these people? I wondered. Now that I was 18, I kind of thought I was legal enough to buy alcohol, but apparently not since I’m not even allowed to have a fucking cocktail. Oh sorry. I didn’t mean to swear. Not!

“Tell you what, I’m gonna make you my best non-alcoholic cocktail since you’re new in this club” he smiled at me. For some reason, I felt all jittery on the inside. Something I’ve never really dealt with before.

I smiled back at him, I hoped it was a smile because I was fucking nervous. When he’s done, he looked at me with those soulful brown eyes and handed it to me. I took out my wallet to give him money but he stopped me.

“On the house”.

“Oh” I nodded as a smile tugged at the corner of my lips. “Thanks” I said and turned to Kyle, who was having a beer. How? How was Kyle able to have a beer and not me? I glared at him.

“What?”

“How the heck are you having a beer when I can’t?” I inquired. Kyle just shrugged making me grumble in annoyance since we’re both 18. I scanned the dance floor slowly and there were actually no ladies here at all.

The way some of the guys were dancing was erotic and kind of turning me on. No wait. It wasn’t. I was just feeling a little hard in the lower region but that’s normal since I haven’t had sex in a while. Jeez. I’m not gay.

“Looks like everyone here is a dude” I said.

“Yeah. It’s a gay bar” the bartender responded. “Strictly gay” he said with a smirk making me choke.

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