Author's Notes: Oh wow. This seems so unfamiliar. HI, GUYS. I'm back...kind of. And so far behind. So many awesome authors' fanfic chapters to read and catch up on. And write. Oh boy do I have to write. I am quitting my job this Friday, so while I'll still have the play going on, at least my afternoons will be free. Hopefully I can sneak a few updates in between now and July! Anyway, I'm just updating this right before bed, so I apologize for the mistakes. Thanks to everyone for reading so far! And I'm so sorry this update took so long.
When it came to drinking, Joven knew his limits. He knew as long as he had to drive, he could only have two glasses of wine, carefully sipped throughout the meal with plenty of water sprinkled in between. Anthony, however, didn't have that same knowledge. He apparently looked at the bottle of wine and thought it was a shame to let it go to waste, so when he wasn't trying to top Joven's glass off, he was progressing through the alcohol at an alarmingly fast rate, and by the time the meal ended - Anthony was trashed.
Joven paid for their dinner and then requested Melanie's help in getting Anthony to his car because there was no way he was letting Anthony get behind the wheel of his own - no matter how much his friend insisted that he was fine (the fact that he was slurring those words was not working to his favor). Melanie agreed since she was about to take her fifteen minute break anyway, so together they took a side and walked Anthony out to the parking lot.
He led the way to his car, reaching out his arm to open up the passenger's side before puzzling over the situation, "So how do we get him in?"
"You get his arms and I get his legs?" Melanie suggested with an upraised brow.
"Guys, I'm fine. I can do it myself," Anthony insisted. And when they listened to him and let him go, he fell straight on the ground with a muffled grunt. "I'm okay." Immediately afterward, he snorted a laugh.
Joven rolled his eyes, "Great. I get the joy of babysitting him all night."
"As soon as you get him laying down, he'll pass right out. He always did whenever he got drunk with Ian," Melanie assured, repositioning herself in order to take Anthony's legs.
Joven followed her lead, hoisting up Anthony's torso in order ease him into the passenger seat. It was a lot more difficult than it looked, and by the time they managed to get him strapped in with the seatbelt and everything, they stood up at about the same time - nearly bumping into each other and coming ridiculously close to being face to face. Joven lingered there for a second before he colored and put a bit of distance between them, mumbling an apology.
Melanie laughed, waving it off. "You're fine. It's fine."
If there was one thing Joven discovered about himself tonight, it was that he was drawn to people's smiles. Seeing her able to smile like that even after all she had gone through showed a real strength of character, and before Joven could even stop himself, he was blurting out: "Ian was an idiot to leave a beautiful girl like you."
She blinked in surprise, arching a brow before a hint of color reached her cheeks and she tucked a few blonde strands behind her ears in embarrassment. "Well, thank you." Then she lapsed into a fake southern drawl. "You're not so bad on the eyes yourself there, Jovenshire."
"It didn't do me a whole lot of good with Mari..."
"Well, Mari's..." Melanie began and then looked as though she had just been about to divulge something top secret. Her hands came up to her lips and she shook her head. "Nevermind."
"No, wait. You can't do that!" Joven protested. "The word 'nevermind' just means I want to mind. I HAVE to mind now. Tell me!" And then realization dawned. "You know who her super secret boyfriend is, don't you?"
She grimaced, "I know, I know. I'm sorry. But I'm sworn to secrecy. You know, pinky sworn. So there's no way I could break my vow. Not when I have such cute pinkies." Melanie held up her hands, wiggling her little fingers at him.
"You won't distract me with your cute fingers," Joven shook his head in determination. "For your crimes, the penalty is gonna be coffee. And that coffee is gonna be with me, so you have one last chance to redeem yourself and tell me or suffer the consequences."
Melanie appeared to debate it, tapping her chin thoughtfully. "You know...I guess I'm just gonna have to accept my punishment." She pulled out her phone. "Give me the digits, Ovenshire."
Joven honestly couldn't believe that worked, but he spewed his number regardless, watching as she plugged it in before grinning. "Got it. Be forewarned, though. I tend to bombard those on my contact list with lots of weird texts at weird times in the morning."
"I think I'm prepared."
She sighed and glanced down at her watch, "Well, I better get back inside. Break's almost over."
"Right. And I better make sure Anthony doesn't choke on his vomit otherwise I'm probably gonna be out of a job."
She laughed, "Nevermind the fact that it's the humane thing to do."
They paused, and there was that awkward moment where neither knew whether this was a hug moment, a kiss moment, or just a moment where you said 'see ya' and walked away. Melanie was the one to make the first move, though, stepping closer and pressing her lips against Joven's cheek before stepping back with an illuminating smile and skipping away toward the restaurant energetically. Joven watched her go, practically in awe that someone so pretty actually seemed to be...remotely interested in him. Maybe not landing Mari was a good thing. Maybe Ian and Lasercorn not making dinner was also a good thing. And maybe now, things could start to look up.
Joven got in the car, smiling over at Anthony. It didn't matter that he was drunk and semi-conscious. Joven had to share the good news, "Soooo, I think I just maybe landed a date with an extraordinarily hot girl."
Anthony shifted a bit, not bothering to open his eyes as he mumbled lazily, "'m not a girl."
Laughing, Joven started the car, "But you look so damn cute in those dresses of shame."
Anthony mumbled something incoherent, lolling his head back toward the window. Joven regarded him in mild amusement before putting his focus back on the road. He did reach one hand over to pat Anthony's head.
"There, there. Sleep off the worst of your drunkenness."
When Anthony didn't answer, Joven assumed it was because he was taking his advice. He looked over and saw Anthony with his eyes closed and lips parted. It was only when he looked over that he realized he had stopped patting Anthony's head and started stroking his hair soothingly. Joven reared his hand back as though he was touching something diseased - returning it to the steering wheel. But his fingers tingled, not forgetting the softness of Anthony's hair - and that was something that weirded him out a little. Finally, he rationalized it was fine to appreciate soft hair - whether it belonged to a man or a woman.
Joven pulled into the driveway of his house, parking there for a second before looking over at Anthony with a sigh, "Alright. The real challenge becomes getting you out of the car."
He got out, heading over to Anthony's door and opening it. Joven reached over, unclicking Anthony's seatbelt before feeling his body practically fall out of the car. He struggled to catch him quick before dragging him onto the pavement, adjusting Anthony in his arms so he could carry him over his shoulder. Joven did his best to get Anthony inside without bumping him too much (he was sure Anthony was going to have a nice-sized knot on the side of his head, though, from where it accidentally collided with the door frame).
Joven got Anthony to the couch, laying him down there. He had just been about to straighten upright when Anthony's arms wrapped around him and dragged him down on top of him. Joven was surprised and looked up to see if Anthony was awake, but his eyes were still closed. Joven frowned and tried to dislodge himself from the weird situation. "Umm...okay. I'm not a teddy bear."
"Mmm, Kalel..." Anthony moaned out softly.
Joven went rigid, his eyes widened, "I'm not Kalel either!"
"Why did you leave me...?"
Joven's shock became sympathy. Anthony looked so sad and unguarded - so vulnerable that it was impossible not to feel sorry for him. He reached up, brushing Anthony's bangs away before murmuring gently, "It's not your fault, Anthony. Think positively. She might have left you now, but she also might come back. Or you could find someone even better."
Anthony's eyes opened and Joven offered him a smile. That was until Anthony reached up and dragged Joven's face to his, pressing a clumsy kiss against his lips. First, Joven was shocked. Anthony was kissing him. Legitimately kissing him! This wasn't some kind of joke. A mistake? Yeah, probably. But definitely not a joke. But the worst thing of all was that Joven didn't pull back. No wait, the worst thing of all was that he returned the kiss. He chalked it up to loneliness, the fact that it was nice to have someone's lips on his, and also the fact that he didn't want to hurt Anthony's feelings by rejecting him.
But after a few seconds, Joven realized he was probably hurting Anthony more by returning the kiss. It would make things weird if he remembered it when he was sober. Hell, things were already weird. He pulled back abruptly and put the equivalent of a high school dance floor between himself and Anthony, clearing his throat.
"You're drunk, Anthony. Let me get you a glass of water..."
"I don't want a glass of water. I want you." Anthony's tone was earnest, even though he was struggling to sit up.
"...now I know you're drunk. Hello. It's me. Joven. The nerdy guy with glasses, remember? So nerdy he went on King of the Nerds?"
"But not nerdy enough to win," Anthony grinned slowly. "I know who you are, and I still want to make out with you."
Joven's voice caught in his throat and he wasn't sure what to say. He searched the floor for something before he shook his head, "You're just looking for a rebound, Anthony. I'm not worth it. It's not worth messing up our friendship over. I'm not even...you're not gay."
"I'm a little bit gay..." Anthony smiled sheepishly with a shrug. "You don't think Lasercorn's Ian's first, do you?"
"...what? Really? You and Ian...?" Joven stepped forward, staring at him in surprise.
"We never came out. He was too embarrassed of me. And we both decided it'd be better for Smosh if we were straight, anyway. At least that's what I thought until I saw him and Lasercorn happen. So now, why should I be straight? If he's not gonna, I don't have to either!" Anthony pounded his fist against the couch cushion petulantly.
Joven shook his head with a soft laugh, "Well, no. No one's saying you have to be straight in the first place. But you probably shouldn't view it as getting even with Ian. That's not exactly healthy." He walked over, stopping just out of Anthony's reach. "You probably shouldn't be making any decisions right now. You could say something you'll regret in the morning. Let alone do something you'll definitely, DEFINITELY regret in the morning. Or do someone you'll regret..."
"You could use someone to help you forget about Mari for a while, couldn't you? You've been so sad, Jovie. Let me make you feel good..." Anthony strained to reach him, only to fall off the couch, hitting his head on the way down.
"Anthony!" Joven lunged forward and immediately scooped him into his arms. When Anthony seemed unconscious, Joven's eyes widened. "Anthony! Hey! Are you okay? Oh shit, oh shit...what do I do?"
Joven panicked for about another minute before Anthony started to laugh, opening one eye to peek up at him, "Aww, you DO care!" He wrapped his arms lazily around Joven's torso for a minute before his hand lowered to settle right on his crotch. Anthony smirked, rubbing the area through the fabric of Joven's jeans. "How about a friendly handjob, at least?"
To say he was relieved that Anthony hadn't hurt himself was an understatement, but that was completely muted by the fact that he had Anthony's hand on his crotch and he was proposing a handjob. Worst of all, Joven was slightly tempted to take him up on the offer, but he felt immediately disgusted with himself. Anthony was drunk. It would be wrong to take advantage of him here. So with a bit of reluctance, he grabbed Anthony's hand and pulled it away, shaking his head.
"No. I'm sorry, Anthony, but it's not a good idea. You're so drunk, you probably won't even remember it. And that would just make things even more awkward, wouldn't it? C'mere. I'll help you back on the couch, alright?" Joven carefully supported Anthony as he lifted him and guided him back to his bed for the night.
"You're too good to me, Joven. You're such a good guy. You're gonna find a good guy. Or girl. Preferably a guy. Preferably me."
Joven plastered on a forced smile, going into the kitchen to get Anthony the water and aspirin and returning a few seconds later, "Okay. Drink up, Anthony. You need your beauty rest."
Anthony accepted the pill and put it in his mouth, tilting the glass back and winding up spilling more on himself than anything, "I am pretty sexy, right?"
"The sexiest," Joven muttered sarcastically, pressing his hands to Anthony's shoulders and pushing him to lay down. "Now rest." He stood there for a few seconds to make sure Anthony didn't choke on his own vomit or something.
"Can I get a blanket?" Anthony requested in a small voice.
"...oh. Yeah. Of course. Hang on," Joven ran upstairs to get the blanket real quick before running back down and gently laying it over Anthony. "There you go. And that's my Batman blanket, so please try not to puke on it in the morning."
"I'll try not to..."
"You need anything else?"
Joven rolled his eyes, "What are you, ten?"
"Indulge me. I'm drunk and miserable and you won't fuck me. The least you can do is read me a story..."
"I don't really have any stories," Joven frowned thoughtfully before he glanced over at his comic collection. He went over to the bookshelf and grabbed one at random before flipping it open to a page toward the middle. "Ooo. Oh yeah. Right there. Put your man meat right into my sloppy, wet-"
Anthony had fallen into snores before Josh could even finish the first page of the hentai. He smiled a little to himself, getting up and heading to the light to turn it out. Joven wasn't really sure what just happened that night, but the one saving grace was that he was pretty sure Anthony wasn't going to remember any of it in the morning. What he needed was some time upstairs, alone, to give himself his own friendly handjob and some sleep. So Joven tucked the hentai under his arm and rushed up to his room, sealing the door behind himself.