He still avoided thinking about Kyle and the other boy still avoided him. Kyle had set his alarm clock earlier so he could walk to school. In class, he had returned to his former self, always being able to at least say something on a topic, and most likely answering the question to the full extent. Stan, too, went through his classes like before, uninterested and doodling. "Mr. Marsh, would you please pay attention!" was something he heard a lot, "I'm sorry." was something, he said a lot.
During lunch break, he would catch himself staring at the door, hoping to see Kyle – who would use the other entrance, which was not in the line of sight from Stan's usual place. "Seems like the fags had a fight!" Cartman kept joking, and Kenny kept laughing about the same old jokes Stan had to endure over and over again. "Shut up, fat ass." he would snap, as he had given up thinking of explanations.
The constant avoiding, thoughts in Stan's case, the other boy at Kyle's, kept going on but grew more and more unbearable to both of them. Kenny showed his concern as he took Stan aside while Cartman was busy picking on Butters. "Stan, what in the world has happened between you and Kyle?" Stan's view moved to the ground as he snapped "Nothing."
Kenny sighed. "Don't even try." He glared angrily at the black haired boy.
"It's ... none of your concern."
"Stan. You and Kyle, you have been together ever since ... like…kindergarten and both of you are my friends, so this is, in fact, quite much of my concern. Since I can't seem to get hold of Kyle, I'll have to torture you until you tell me what the fuck's going on."
Stan felt uncomfortable. "Listen, Kenny, I need to sort this out m..."
"And as your friend, I can help you with it." He paused. "That's what friends are about, right?"
Stan looked up to Kenny, who smiled and patted his friend on the shoulder. "Thanks Kenny, but I... I have to think about it a little. Maybe ... Maybe you've already helped me with it."
Stan turned around and went home, leaving the blond behind, puzzled. He had been waiting for the bus with the others, but decided to walk. More time to think. He needed to think. He needed to stop evading those thoughts, he needed to make up his mind. He thought about how he had nearly lost his friend just yesterday and came to the conclusion, he'd better sort this out quickly. He knew this was his fault. He knew ... then his cell phone vibrated. He reached for it. He wasn't in the mood to talk, he had to think!
However, when he saw the name "Wendy" flashing on the display, he once again cast away the depressing thoughts. "Hey, Wendy!" he greeted, not without a certain happiness. "Hey Stan! I thought we could... you know..."
"Go to Raisins?" Stan knew Wendy hated that restaurant.
"Yeah sure, why not, and before that, we could cut your balls off!" Wendy stated in a matter-of-fact like voice. Since Stan liked his testicles, he agreed to not mention the place anymore. "Well, where do you wanna go? I'll take you anywhere!" Stan regretted that at once.
"What about the art museum? It's been ages since I've been there! Oh, I can't even remember any of the pictures!"
Stan pinched the bridge of his nose and shut his eyes tightly. There was no way out of it, now. "Yeah, sure, why not?" He pretended to be happy. At least, Wendy would be happy. And so he met her at the entrance of the large building and began what he knew would be a boring trip through hell which would only be bearable because his girlfriend was close.
Kyle was sitting at the piano, again. He altered practicing the hard parts with one hand at a time and the easier ones with both hands. The piece was truly beautiful. He thought of that guy from Germany. He wanted to be able to play that piece before he met him again. But then again, what good was his talent, if he had no one to show it to. Even though he knew Stan wasn't interested in that kind of music, he had hoped to impress him a bit, maybe even get him to like the music. But he refused to give up the hope, even though it might alter the experiment's result. He chuckled a bit at the thought of his breakdown the other day and, once again, started playing the random notes.
The next few days would be the same for Kyle. He would walk to school, manage his classes, play piano, finish his studies, maybe watch TV or read a good book for a while, then go to bed early, since he had to walk to school the next day.
Stan had started thinking. Oh, how he thought! However, he didn't reach a conclusion. This was not surprising, since he always thought about Kyle. How he was feeling right now, how he could mend their shattered friendship, what he would tell him, once he got the chance to talk to him alone ... He approached the problem from the wrong side and didn't realize it.
Finally, the day came, when he would take Wendy to the movie. They were at the same place they frequently visited lately: they were eating ice cream at their favorite restaurant. It was about an hour to the movie, and Stan was excited to know if it was any good. Kyle would like to know too...
"Stanley, what in the world are you zoning out for all the time? Just now, you were staring blankly into space again!" Stan considered telling her what was bugging him lately, but decided to go for a "Sorry".
"What's going on with you recently? You seem so unsure, as if you don't even know about your own feelings anymore! Do you ... think about your feelings?" Stan was astonished. His feelings? "Stan, what makes you so confused? Is this about ... Kyle?" Sure, it was about Kyle, he was thinking about Kyle all the time. His feelings? Why his? "Stan, you know, women can feel things." He nodded absently. His feelings... She prepared herself to ask the question which had been bothering her over the last week. "Stan ... Do you still love me?"
Stan looked up and right into her brown eyes. But slowly, they changed their color, as if grass would grow on the earth, covering it with a green blanket. Her face suddenly became beautifully boyish, as her long, black hair changed into red curls... Stan was shocked, his face went pale... "No way..." Wendy closed her eyes, a tear escaped them, as she realized she had lost her boyfriend forever.
Stan felt pushed backwards onto his chair. He didn't love Wendy. "No fuckin' way..." This feeling, after Kyle had confessed... He just couldn't grasp its meaning. But now, clear as day... his confusion, the avoiding of the thoughts, his shock... "Kyle..." he whispered. Everything fit together in a perfect harmony, creating the melody he used to hear when he thought about Wendy... The melody...
He suddenly jumped up and ran off, leaving Wendy alone. She started sobbing, but she knew, no one was to be blamed for her sadness. That's just the way it goes...
He ran all the way back to school, where he had come from just hours ago. How could Kyle ever forgive his stupidity...? He reached the school and as he pushed against the door to see if it's open, his heart skipped a beat – the door didn't move a bit. "Pull" the sign at the handle read. So he pulled and the door opened. He ran through the corridors, uncertain where this piano room was, as he heard a melody, quiet but clearly audible, sad, but hopeful. He followed his ears until he reached an open door.
He slipped inside unnoticed by the player and the man sitting next to him. Again, his heart skipped a beat, as he saw his best friend's dainty fingers move dexterously along the keys. When Kyle played the finishing chord, he wanted to clap, but was interrupted by the man. "Really good Kyle, you managed to perfect the piece in one week, that's pretty amazing! Do you think, you're ready to put some more emotion in it?" Kyle nodded, steadied his posture, closed his eyes for a second and put his fingers on the keyboard, searching for the first keys to press.
He took a deep breath, and started with what seemed like random notes which concluded in a simple chord. As the left hand kicked in, he closed his eyes, gently giving life to the black dots which rested on thin lines on the paper. He let the melody under his fingers flush out his own feelings, and, as sadness overwhelmed him, the melody filled the room with an air of awe, as if some royal figure had just entered the scene.
Slowly the volume of Kyle's play rose, as did the temperament of the melody, and a tear ran down his heated cheeks, and just in the same moment, Stan was moved to tears, as well. When the piece reached it's moving climax, Stan had completely lost control over the torrents his eyes had turned into, and as Kyle brought the piece to an end with a chord which sounded in a noise as moving as a sunrise after a stormy night, he left his seat in the back and walked towards the piano, in a trance like the one that had lead to this week of loneliness for both of them.
All the time he had the book in his hands, he had taken it with him to school to read during lunch break. When Kyle saw his former best friend, he wiped away his tear quickly, but then he saw the wet streams on Stan's face... "Kyle ..." The weak, whiny voice was totally untypical for the manly athlete. "...I ... wanted to return that book to you ..." Confused, he took "The Perfume" from Stan as two long pieces of paper fell out. "Oh ... The movie tickets, seems like I forgot them in there... I guess they're yours now." Stan managed to smile, he was still deeply moved by Kyle's performance.
"Would you like to take me with you?"
Kyle's confusion didn't seem to decrease. He stared at the pieces of paper he had just picked up. They read "The Perfume – Story of a Murderer; Begin: 6:00 pm Seat ..."
"Kyle, I'm…so…so sorry that I just left without saying anything that day. I was confused... I was shocked, but not by your confession, but... I... felt... I had a strange feeling after you confessed. I just couldn't understand it. It was... a weird ... tickle in my stomach, and just ... just minutes ago I realized..." He trailed off. This was really hard. Really fucking hard.
He swallowed hard and continued. "Kyle Broflovski, Kye, my best friend, I can't ... I just can't live without you." As Stan's statement sank in, Kyle fell onto the chair he'd been sitting on before. Relief spoke out of his face and voice, as he said "Neither can I... live without you, I mean..." Stan looked into the beautiful jade eyes of his friend. He immediately was entangled by the view, just as he had been with the piece before. "I know Kyle, and that's why I have to apologize. I must have hurt you more than a best friend ever should... you must be so angry..." He approached the boy. "You must have felt terrible, and it's all my fault..."
The regret in his voice was too much for Kyle. "It's ok Stan, forget about it, you're back, that's all that counts!"
But Stan wasn't finished. "Kyle, let's watch this movie together. I'm nearly through with the book and I..."
"What about Wendy? Those tickets are for you and her."
Stan smiled. "We broke up."
Kyle's face changed into an expression of shock. "WHAT? Why? What did you do?"
The charcoal haired boy shrugged. "I don't love her anymore..."
"Did she say that?" –
"Well, yeah, but it's true, that's one of the things I realized today."
"So you're single again, huh?"
Stan decided to go for the straight, honest answer. "No…I have a boyfriend, now." he said in a matter-of-fact kind of voice. If Kyle had been confused before, Hell, then he was fucked up right now. He didn't know what to think, what to feel, just how to understand what Stan had just said. But Stan stopped Kyle's misery quickly, by pressing a gentle kiss on his lips.
Fortunately, the man had left the room before, knowing they would want to be alone, because otherwise he would have been way too ashamed to say what he had to. "Kye, you're probably the only sane person in all of South Park, and, for fuck's sake, I love you, I fuckin' love you, dude."
Kyle tried to say something, but no sound escaped his mouth. Overwhelmed by his luck, he didn't struggle as he felt lifted to his feet. Stan's arms where under his and, without breaking eye contact, he pulled his friend up to face him. Kyle had barely managed to stand. He felt something warm on his lips again, longer this time, with more passion, and the warmth spread from his lips and moved down to his heart, from where it reanimated his entire body.
Stan's tears mixed with Kyle's, and the red haired boy put his arms around that angel before him and pressed the boy's body against his own, squeezing the air out of both their lungs. He kept pressing as their kiss broke and started sobbing heavily, burying his face in the cloth on Stan's shoulder. Slowly, he calmed down, and Stan waited patiently until his freshly declared boyfriend faced him smiling happily. "Play it again." Stan begged, as he brushed the tears of the boy's cheeks.
Kyle sat down in front of the large, black instrument, and started playing again. This time, even though the melody was the same sad and hopeful one like before, the piece made their hearts beat with joy. Stan sat down next to Kyle and put his arm around his friend. As the final chord hung lightly in the air, Kyle rested his head against Stan's shoulder and Stan planted his cheek on the soft, silky, red curls.
Kyle suddenly chuckled. "What are you laughing about?" Stan asked, as the chord ceased.
"I had an incredibly schmaltzy thought here..." Stan grinned. Kyle had skills as a poet, and he was curious, what he was thinking of. "Tell me."
"No way, it's horrible!"
"Tell me anyway!"
Kyle coughed slightly, suppressed his laughter, but started chuckling again. "Ok." He said. "I just thought ... Well..." Another chuckle interrupted him. "Our love... hehe... is like this chord."
"The perfect harmony."
Author's note: Thanks for your help with making the language more user friendly, Jake, and thanks for everything, .MeloniousXx, your motivation, beta reading, helping me find synonyms and all that! I wouldn't even have started writing without you, you made it possible, to start with!
Also thank you all for your reviews, I loved them, it feels great to know you guys actually like what I wrote! Please continue to write reviews!
Over the past couple of ...years? people have continued to favourite the story and I can't tell you how good this feels! So I want to use this opportunity to also thank everyone who put it in their favourites, which generates an email to me. I will never mark those as spam, I love you guys!