Neka sighed and leaned back on the park bench, letting the frigid wind assault his face. As a firm hater of warm weather the cold was welcome. The loud rushes of air tossed his two toned hair out of its usual style, creating a wild mass of black and grey-blue. His pink red eyes were shut to the sun overhead that gave off little heat. In the back of his mind, he wished he had dressed warmer than he had in black jeans and a black and gold hoodie over a plain purple t-shirt. All the noise nature made prevented him from hearing the approach of another individual.
"Barone?" Neka bolted upright, turning his head quickly to see a short guy with brown hair streaked with two shades of blue wearing teal pants with an unknown emblem above the knee, converse and a grey suit jacket.
"Who the hell are you?" he asked snidely.
"Come on, we met once a long time ago, I'm Cyon Kingston!" he said enthusiastically, "Don't you remember? My mom is Lucy-Rose."
"Oh, I've heard that before," Neka replied, turning away from the boy.
"But you don't remember when we met," Cyon said, his face falling.
"I'm afraid not."
"Weird, you're the one who's older; you had the better memory back then." He sat down next to him, a little too close for comfort. "It was summer, twelve years ago. Our moms worked together, we were both stuck at your mom's baby shower. She had a girl, right?"
"Yeah, April. She's a pain to have around."
"Really? You know, I always wanted siblings, with you around that day, I felt like I had one for a while."
Neka blushed, he wasn't used to compliments. "Thanks… I think." He was also surprised by Cyon's sappiness.
"I'm serious, that's how I really felt!"
"So, why are you here in Boston?"
"Oh, college," he said, "I'm going to the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts, but I live here in Boston with a friend."
"What about you, your mom said you got out of Washington as soon as you could, left like a flash and didn't even say goodbye." Neka thought he detected a hint of sadness in Cyon's voice.
"There was nothing left for me in Seattle, so I bought a one way ticket to Boston and never looked back." He overlooked how dramatic it sounded.
"I guess that makes sense," Cyon said, steadily growing sadder.
Neka stood up quickly and turned to face the other boy, "Come on, short one, you haven't had lunch yet, right?"
"No, not yet."
He sighed, offering his hand down to him, "I know great place, let's go." Cyon smiled a little, taking the proffered hand. Neka then led him away from the bench, toward another street until they reached a pale gold Toyota Camry.
"Is this your car?"
"Yeah, get in."
"Now that's a little creepy."
Neka chuckled, "I suppose, but I get the feeling you trust me."
Cyon shrugged sliding into the shotgun seat. The car was fairly clean with plain grey upholstery. The owner revved the engine before heading out into the thick Boston traffic. After a few minutes of awkward silence Neka pulled out his iPhone and gave it to Cyon.
"Find 'Regina' in the contacts and when they ask for your order just read what's in the note for the contact," he commanded. The blue haired one did as he was told, thinking the request was odd. A little over ten minutes later they arrived at a building amid a mass of others bearing a sign that read Regina Pizzeria. Earlier when Cyon had been about to hang up, Neka told him to stay on the line and to tell the person on the other end when they got there. Moments later a woman ran out holding three pizza boxes she passed to Neka who put them in Cyon's lap before giving her money. "Keep the change." he said before she ran back inside and they drove off.
"Where are we headed next?" he asked, lifting the edge of the top box, releasing the delicious aroma into the enclosed air of the car.
"My place," he said. Not long after they arrived at a plain building that could be nothing but an apartment building. They climbed out, walked in and quickly began to ascend the stairs to the third floor.
Neka unlocked the door, flinging it open to reveal brown haired boy sitting in the lap of a boy with titian hair. Making out with him. Furiously.
The taller one sighed, "Soren, I thought I told you to move that into your bedroom! I don't want to have to worry about sending the couch out to be cleaned a third time."
"Aw, Kitty, don't be like that," the blonde drawled.
The brunette turned around and his eyes went wide. "Cyon? I didn't know you knew Neka."
"Barely," he replied, "Funny, I didn't know you were into guys, Kai."
Kai giggled, "Yup." Neka took the pizzas from Cyon and took them to the kitchenette and pulled plates from the cupboard. "Hey, Neka, how'd you meet Cyon?"
"He recognized me from when we met over ten years ago." He started pulling pieces out of the boxes and beckoning Cyon over and proceeded to explain what was in each one. Finally, they ended up sitting on the couches eating, Kai still half on Soren's lap.
"So, Kai, you're roommates with Cyan?" Soren asked, licking some of the sauce from around Kai's lips.
"It's Cyon," he interjected.
"Obviously, we got to be friends after he came over to the east coast," Soren's boyfriend said, "And brush your teeth after you're done eating, Ren, you know I hate the taste of meat."
Soren chuckled, "I know, baby. There's ice cream in the freezer, too." Kai affectionately nuzzled his neck, Cyon almost expected him to purr.
Neka leaned over toward Cyon and whispered, "They kind of make me sick sometimes."
"I'm glad they don't do this at my apartment," he replied.
"Kitty! I thought you loved me!" Soren cried in shock.
"Where did you get that idea, bastard?"
"Please don't argue!" Kai said quickly, hugging his boyfriend closer, his eyes just beginning to water.
"Baby, it's nothing," Ren said comfortingly, running his fingers through his hair.
"Dramatic much?" Cyon muttered, munching on his pizza. Kai pretended not to have heard him, jumping up to take his empty plate to the sink and take peach cobbler ice cream out of the freezer.
He came back with a bowl and returned to eating. "I'm worried about Emrys," he admitted.
"Who?" Neka asked, bewildered,
"You know the player down the hall?" Kai reminded him, "That one apartment where people are always yelling at night?"
"So this is where you spend every Saturday night!" Cyon accused.
"So, Emrys, he never has a steady boyfriend and he's like, thirty or something," Kai went on, "He needs to get in a serious relationship for a while."
"Or get castrated," Neka suggested.
Kai's lower lip trembled and tears started to roll down his alabaster cheeks. Soren pulled him close, kissing the top of his head. "Shh, it's okay, Kitty doesn't mean it, he's just making a joke. A very mean joke, but it won't happen."
"You never know, it might happen," Neka said quietly.
Kai gasped before breaking into sobs and running into the bathroom and slamming the door shut, locking it.
"Oh, now you've done it, Neka," the titian hissed, walking over to the bathroom. "Kai, baby, Kitty didn't mean it! Come on, open the door, please!"
"But what if he's right?" Kai yelled through his tears. "What if it's against his will and he can't have children."
A knock sounded on the front door. "Oh, lovely," Cyon grumbled, "We needed someone else here." He pulled the door open find himself looking up at a pair of ice blue eyes.
"Whoa, I didn't expect to see such a cute boy in a place like this," the man said, pushing his hand through his platinum hair. He wore a white button down shirt under a black vest and dark grey trousers.
Cyon blushed a little; the man was handsome, and probably hitting on him. Neka came up behind him, his arms crossed over his chest. "Emrys McNeil, right?"
"Yeah, I heard the noise and I got worried," he said, leaning against the door jamb.
"You don't have to, Kai's being the dramatic guy he is," Neka replied.
"You sure?" In the background Soren was still pleading with Kai to come out of the bathroom. It was amazing to see such a seemingly tough person nearly reduced to his knees pleading with his boyfriend.
"I'm sure they'll work it out," Cyon said, trying to lighten the mood, "Kai can't hold a grudge."
"Still, it's worrying, it must have been something bad," Emrys said, edging into the apartment.
Soren turned to see the taller man advancing into the room. "Kai, there's a very good reason for you to come out!"
"Is he really alright?" Emrys asked, sounding worried.
"I don't know," Ren sighed.
"I'm not okay!" Kai shouted through the door. "Neka is an asshole!"
Emrys turned toward the reason for the chaos, his expression accusing. Neka tried to appear innocent. He turned back to the bathroom door and knocked gently on the door. "Kai, Neka doesn't often say things that are true."
The door clicked as it was unlocked and Kai stepped out, his eyes red and rather swollen from crying. Soren stood behind him, holding on to his shoulders. The brunette leaned into him and appeared almost childlike.
The blonde turned back toward Neka, "I think you ought to apologize."
Neka looked scandalized, "What the hell did I do?"
"You did a lot," Soren shot back.
"You should," Cyon coaxed, pushing Neka toward the others.
"Sorry, I got confused," Neka said, "When someone says apologize, my mind immediately goes to how Soren apologizes to people."
"And how's that?" Cyon asked.
"He has sex to apologize, anyone who ever dated him knows that," was Neka's reply. Cyon's eyes went wide, that was not what he expected, but Neka did apologize to Kai. Wait, Neka dated Soren? Well that explained the 'Kitty' nickname.
"Well," Emrys turned to Cyon with a grin, "It was nice meeting you, I hope to see you around again."
After Emrys left, Cyon grabbed his jacket from the hook. "I should get going now; I have a time slot at a place."
"Oh, is that the one place in a basement?" Kai asked.
"Yes, you went once, didn't you?"
"Oh, right, the place where that punk chick hit on me and that other super muscular guy tried to start a fight after I wouldn't let him touch my ass," Kai recalled, shuddering, "That place is creepy."
"Yep! I've got a gig." Cyon was out the door just as Soren was telling Kai never to go to that place again and Kai said he was going to take a bath and a nap. He rolled his eyes and sighed, thinking he was going to be spending a lot more time at this place in the future. He stepped out of the building and started down the sidewalk, he was closer to the place than he would have been otherwise. Down the street a way and around a corner was an rundown cafe that supported small concerts the basement below. Luckily, he had a locker there for his guitar, he didn't want to haul it there and back to his apartment. He climbed down the stone steps to the door and found the room mostly empty except for a few employees.
"Cyon, good," Kira said, advancing from across the room. Kira was the owner and she was glad she had someone booked for gigs the whole winter, no one really wanted to go out during this time of year. Besides, Cyon needed the money since he couldn't do odd jobs in the cold like this. "We thought you would never show up!"
"Sorry I'm a little late, I was having lunch with friends and everything went kind of haywire," he replied, taking out his instrument. There was already a stool, microphone and a bottle of ice water on the stage.
"I think there are some regulars waiting upstairs," Kira told him, "Plus some new ones. You're getting pretty popular, the way you look."
"Now that makes me feel good about myself, it's not my music that draws them in, it's my amazingly handsome face," Cyon said placing his hand on his chest in false hurt.
"God, you performers are so dramatic, just go sit on the stool and get ready to play, I'm letting them in," she snapped, turning toward the door.
"Yeah, yeah," he intoned, doing as he was told, taking a quick sip of the water. People began to filter into the room, the people of the more alternative groups of Boston. More people would come later. The listeners milled around the bar and the stage, drinking whatever was there, Cyon didn't know, he was eighteen for God's sake! He noticed a boy sitting at one of the tables drinking what looked like lemonade, he was Asian, but his hair was bleached blonde. It looked rather ridiculous. But it looked kind of appealing with his sweet brown eyes. And then walked over the one Kai had feared for, the one Cyon now recognized as the face of a men's clothing line. Emrys. Was he going to make a move on the guy? Yes, yes he was.