Friday, 18 November 2005

Word count: 889

Viscosity

With Lex, any skin shown is the same as being naked. Pale forearms flashing in summer - sleeves rolled up indoors because castles don't have climate control - are erotic. Muscles like knots of fine clay smoothed out slightly along his bones, I figure that if you look close enough you can still see the fingerprints left behind. I had imagined Lex in his bather's would be awe-inspiring.

I was slightly disappointed when I realised that under the clothes that cover like armour, he's just Lex. Tall and fit, but just beyond weedy, like he's not quite finished growing.

Lex is a strong swimmer, but he sits on the side of the pool, only wet at the shoulders from the short dive and glide to get to the side in the softest sun. It's early afternoon and his skin is like chalk or soap. By the end of the day his shoulder blades and arms will be the colour of milk with cinnamon freckles. I swim laps, or float on my back and we talk, our voices echoing inside the pool room. I ask him to pass the water bottle, and he lobs it at me, getting me square in the stomach. He grins like he's only twenty-one, and it's a shock to me that he is.

But no foolery goes unpunished, not in Smallville. The water tastes resentful as I cut through it to haul him in, a hand around his waist and one on his thigh, tossing him over my shoulder. I turn to watch him. He's swallowed up by the cool water, his palms hitting the bottom of the pool, an elastic handstand and he twists underwater, bouncing back. His feet don't get wet until he flips upright. The pale angles of his ankles drive me wild.

He leaps at me, finding a leverage point somewhere, one that probably doesn't exist in this dimension, tackling me around the shoulders. I allow my self to crumple, flung backwards, his hands on my shoulder and a foot on my knee as he uses my body as a springboard, flitting away as water goes up my nose. When I break the surface again he's standing feet away, watching me with this amused look on his face. His body seems so insubstantial, sharpness and lines corrupted by the refraction of the water.

He'll be stocky maybe, like his father.

I lunge at him, thick and heavy because we haven't started swim training in gym and I forget that there's anything thicker than the heavy air that sometimes hangs between us. He side steps me with a smirk, and darts away. I imagine that in another life he'd be a river otter or something, so sleek and light and fast. I move against the water but it parts for him. All the elements are in love with Lex. He could set ice on fire with a platonic caress.

We chase each other around the pool, him running from me and always just out of reach, until he can find something solid to launch himself from, something that's gone when I stand in his place. We crash into each other, always hard but light, the altered gravity liquid brings keeping us from harm. If we were in the real world, and maybe wearing lycra, it'd be like some epic superhero battle.

I grip the side of the pool and kick my feet against the wall below, torpedoing into his side. He twists, the blow of my body glancing to the side. I grab at him to keep him close, my finger tangling in the wet fabric of his swimming trunks. Navy blue, but black in this watery shade. Making him look pale, like talc. I don't let him twist away, pinning him against the wall. He lets his body hang there; his feet cutting through the water to land on my chest, trying to push me away, but I don't let him.

He's wearing this half grin, like him being pinned to the wall is some kind of embarrassing-endearing crude punch line that no one told me about. Me pinning him, and him this ball of Lex with his heels digging into my stomach. He's got this look around his eyes like 'go on, show me what's next'. Like I know. But I've never seen Lex like this before, weedy and amused and oh, we're so totally mostly naked.

There's water beading on his collarbones and the dip between, and it looks like it would probably taste really good. I shift my weight, and he drops his feet down, one on each hip. I figure maybe his stomach's tired or whatever.

But yeah. Nearly naked, dripping wet, Lex pinned, legs akimbo. Hotness. He's twenty-one. I'm only fifteen, sixteen next week. I'm only a kid and he's gonna let me do this. I suspect that when I kiss him, I'm the only one surprised. He tastes like pool water, and his legs fall around my waist. My tongue is in his mouth, and he makes this little hitched-breathing sound, pressing against me. I can feel in his skin and his blood and his body that's going to grow and change and become a bit more than he is now.

I hope he doesn't. I hope we're like this forever. Liquid, flexible, touching.