It's obnoxious, how addicted I am to this pairing. You'd think that, with all of the over-slashed fandoms out there, I'd pick one less... incestuous to become obsessed with.

Here is yet another Tom/Jake story, because I can't stop.

Disclaimer: I don't own Aliens in the Attic or the characters. Also, I am dearly sorry if any of the actors ever come across any of my AITA fics. I swear, I'm sane in real life, and I'm not (that) obsessed with gaying up everything.

Also: There's gay in here. And incest. I'm sorry. Like it or leave.

My Defense: This pairing is just so... there that I feel justified in making them gay.

Reviews are enjoyed, but my ridiculous pride won't allow me to beg for them. Flames are mocked and urinated on.

*WARNING: THIS IS SLIGHTLY AU. I KNOW THEY DON'T GO TO THE SAME SCHOOL, BUT COME ON. YOU CAN TOTALLY PICTURE THEM SITTING LIKE FOUR CLASSROOMS AWAY AND TEXTING EACH OTHER EVERY TEN SECONDS, YEAH? YEAH.*

Also, let me know if there are errors. I'm tired and just can't make myself read through it again, so there is a chance there'll be mistakes. A small chance, but one nonetheless.

Okay then.

Tom was about ten seconds away from stabbing his eyes out with his sparkly blue mechanical pencil.

He had already been in his stupid class for two hours and he still had another hour and a half to go. And this class… it really couldn't get any more boring. His teacher was ancient, to the point that the class kept tensing when he paused because he looked an inch from keeling over.

The topic was even worse. Well, at least to Tom. Cognitive Science had sounded like such an interesting class, and Tom was intrigued by the mind and how it worked. But this? This was ridiculous.

And he couldn't fall asleep, because the last time a student passed out for a moment in the class, the teacher had traded his rightly earned A for a sorrowful D.

So Tom sat there, trying so hard to keep his eyes pried open and not even bothering to take notes anymore. The teacher never stayed on one power point slide long enough for anyone to jot down the contents, anyway.

He felt his phone vibrate in his front pocket ten seconds later, and, keeping an eye on the teacher, tugged it out and pressed a few buttons. He had received a text message from Jake, who was currently in a classroom six doors down from Tom.

how iz ur brain class?

Tom rolled his eyes. Jake had chosen, for his senior year, to take all easy courses that required no textbook and didn't issue homework. Right now he should've been in cooking, although usually he was too absorbed in making surprisingly good food to text.

Tom sent a typical reply announcing how utterly boring his class was, hiding his phone under the desk. If his teacher thought it was weird that he was staring down at his crotch, the man didn't say anything. His phone buzzed again, and he immediately hit a button so the message popped up.

Iss kewl, man. I'll make u a strawberry cake okay

That was the best part of Jake taking cooking classes; Tom got half of his creations. Or, in some cases, he got the entire thing. And Jake was a pretty good cook, so it was usually worth suffering through a boring class. Before he could text back a thank you, his phone vibrated again.

I want something in return tho.

Tom rolled his eyes. Usually Jake didn't ask for repayment, but when he did, it was something stupid and unnecessary and the sole purpose was to make Tom do something pointless. He glanced down at the rest of the message.

Can u go on IM?

Tom glanced up at his teacher, but unsurprisingly, the crickety old man was still droning on about the formulas used for thinking out logic problems. Tom smirked and logged onto his instant messenger account. Because his uncle Nate and his dad had decided to use the same phone plan, both Jake and Tom had received Blackberry's and could use the built in instant messenger. It was faster and less annoying than text messages, anyway.

Jake: Heloooo

Thomas: Why aren't you cooking or something?

Jake: Waitin 4 the cake 2 finish baking

Thomas: Oh.

He frowned. The only problem with IM-ing was that it caused way more awkward pauses then texting. And he ran out of things to say ten times faster, and half the time he felt like he really had nothing to say to his cousin.

Jake this girl won't stop staring at m

Jake: *me

Thomas: isn't that a good thing?

Jake: shiiiii she's coming over

Jake: she's weird I don't like her

Thomas: ooooh jake's got a girlfriend

Thomas: ….

Thomas: I'm kidding jake

Thomas: jake

Thomas: …

Thomas: fine ignore me

Tom logged off after five minutes of typing at a non-responsive Jake. A full six minutes later, his phone vibrated with a text from his cousin

Go back on stupid

Thomas: What

Jake: why'd you log off

Thomas: you stopped responding

Jake: god that girl

Thomas: did she ask u out?

Jake: No worse

Jake: She asked for my cake

Thomas: :-/

Thomas: whad you say

Thomas: *what'd

Jake: I said no

Jake: she wouldn't leave me alone

Jake: … I kind of told her its for someone

Jake: and she kind of took it the wrong way

Thomas: … she thinks you have a girlfriend now? Isn't that good tho? She'll leave you alone

Jake: um… I might have said it's for a boy

Thomas: so?

Thomas: oh

Thomas: AHAHAHA she thinks your gay

Jake: shut up! I didn't mean to it just slipped

Thomas: what did you say exactly

Jake: she asked why she couldn't have it

Jake: and I said…

Jake: um Tommy plz don't get mad

Jake: she asked who it was for

Jake: and I said that everything I make is for Tom

Jake: and she's like oh who's Tom your boyfriend

Jake: and I guess I didn't answer her right or something

Jake: so now my entire cooking class thinks I'm dating a guy named Tom

Tom stared at his phone screen, having to reread the messages twice just to comprehend them. When he realized exactly what Jake had done, he bit his lip hard enough to make it bleed. Gossip traveled faster than light in his school. It was a split high school, where grades nine and ten took place in a completely different building at a completely different address. The only students in his school were in either eleventh or twelfth grade, which tallied up to just one hundred and sixteen kids. The reason for the split was to 'stop' bullying, because too many seniors were pulling vicious pranks on poor little freshmen. Unfortunately, the smaller population meant that everybody knew everybody's business, and that when a rumor started, it not only spread like wildfire but it stayed around for ages.

Jake: …

Jake: tommy please talk to me

Jake: it's not that bad… not like they know it's you

Jake: tom

Tom actually growled then, and a few students near him glanced his way curiously. But he didn't even notice because he was currently jabbing out a message entirely set in caps lock.

Thomas: I AM THE ONLY STUDENT NAMED TOM IN THIS SCHOOL YOU MORON

Thomas: NOW EVERYONE IS NOT ONLY GOING TO THINK I'M GAY, BUT THAT I'M DATING MY IDIOT COUSIN

Jake: oh

Jake: shit

Jake: okay okay we can fix this

Jake: right?

Jake: right?

Jake: …

Jake: u kno, they might not even think its you

Jake: they probably think it's some other Tom

Jake: like from another school

Jake: cuz that'd make more sense anyway right

Jake: …

Jake: o wait nvm they think it's you

Tom shut his phone off and shoved it into the deepest corner of the deepest pocket of his messenger bag.


"Oh- hey Tom! Tom, wait up," Jake called out, instantly noticing his cousin in the hallway after the last class and running up to him. Tom glanced back and, upon seeing who it was, whipped around and began stomping away. Jake sprinted after him, catching up easily and grabbing him by the arm. "Tom, just talk to me, man."

"Get off! And no, I will not talk to you!" He tried to tug his arm away, but Jake gripped him with both hands and pulled on him a little.

"Come on, please! Let's go to an empty classroom or something; just please talk to me!" Jake begged. Tom flushed as a few people stared at them, and one guy muttered 'lovers spat'.

"Shut up, stupid! Don't mention anything about going anywhere where no one else is!"

"What if we go to the bathroom? We can lock ourselves in a stall but I need to talk to you!"

"You're making it worse!" Tom cried, noticing that people were definitely forming an audience around them. Jake glanced around and winced, realizing that them going into a bathroom stall together was a really stupid idea. He finally released Tom's arm.

"I'll walk you to your locker," Jake begged, immediately recoiling at, once again, saying something that didn't help at all. He tried again. "Can we go for a walk then?" Again. "Let's go get pizza. I'll buy…" He mentally slapped himself and settled for grabbing Tom's wrist (although their audience would insist that it was his hand) and hauled him away from the crowd, eventually bringing him into an old art classroom. He tugged open one of the closets, which was large enough to be a small store, and pushed Tom inside. Slamming and locking the door behind him, Jake finally leaned against the wall, sighing.

"It's like you want the rumors to spread," Tom said flatly, crossing his arms and glaring. Jake closed his eyes, counting to ten. "If anyone finds out about this, you are dead. It's bad enough that there's rumors already, but now they're gonna see us coming out of a goddamn closet together."

"I'm sorry, okay? But I don't really care what they think," Jake finally said, peering at his cousin. "I was trying to apologize to you for the whole deal. And for burning your cake."

"What- you burned my cake?" Tom demanded, sounding slightly more upset about that then about their current predicament.

"Well I was kind of preoccupied in that class, so excuse me for not being able to watch a freaking cake while I'm trying not to butcher your social life."

"What about you? Why aren't you affected by this at all?" Tom asked, almost sounding jealous. Jake stared at him as if the answer was obvious.

"I'm Jake Pearson. No one messes with me, even if they think I'm an incestuous homosexual." Tom gaped at him, and then slid down the wall to sit on a small cabinet that was jam packed with paintbrushes. He rubbed at his eyes tiredly.

"Jake. It's not even… this isn't about how intimidated by you other people are. They think you're screwing your cousin. Your male cousin. What happens when this gets back to the other half of the high school? The ninth and tenth graders practically thrive on the drama that goes on here. Besides, your brothers are there. What happens when they find out?"

Jake didn't answer. He walked over to sit next to Tom, letting himself collapse against a large bucket of industrial strength glue. He picked up a stray pencil and began scribbling circles on his shoes.

"Maybe it won't be so bad," he finally said, earning a bewildered stare from Tom.

"Are you serious? Of course it will be bad! The entire school-"

"Thinks I'm dating my cousin, I know, I know. But I mean… at least they don't think I'm dating some weirdo, right? Like, I'd rather have the entire school think I'm dating you than have one person think I'm dating Becky Elleman," he said brightly. Tom opened his mouth to reply but couldn't think of a response. He sat there awkwardly for a moment, trying to think of something, anything really, to say.

"But… at least then they'd think you're dating a girl," he finally managed. Jake shot him a dumbfounded look.

"What difference does it make if it's a girl or boy?" He leaned back against the glue bucket, stretching his arms back. "Becky's a creep. She's had a raging crush on me since third grade, and I'd rather have my ears sliced off then date her. So yeah, in comparison to that, having everyone think I'm with you is fine."

Tom kind of just stared at the floor in front of him a little, not sure how to take that.

"You… you said that it didn't matter… about boys or girls. Are you… um…"

"Bisexual. Not that hard of a word there, Mathlete."

"Oh. Oh. That's… you never told me that," Tom forced out, tripping over his words.

"Does… are you not okay with it? Because I hate to break it to you, but it's kind of not gonna change," Jake muttered. He glanced sideways at Tom, a little worried about the reply he was about to get. Tom didn't say anything for a few moments, fidgeting with the knees of his jeans and looking away.

"I guess it's cool," he finally said quietly, and Jake released a breath he had unknowingly been holding in. "Have you ever… I mean, with a guy?"

"What, had sex?"

"Wha- no! No, kissed!" Tom insisted. He hesitated. "You… you had sex with a guy?"

"No," Jake answered, and Tom relaxed a little. "I've kissed one though. Two, actually."

"What! Who?" Tom wiggled around so that he faced his cousin, sounding shocked and slightly outraged. Jake glared at him.

"I thought you didn't have a problem with it."

"I don't!"

"Then why do you sound so pissed off?"

"I-" Tom paused, realizing how angry he had been. He deflated almost instantly, dazing off to the side. "I don't know. But who did you…?"

"One was a guy when we all went to Disney World. I didn't even see it coming, but I guess he got a vibe from me, or something. He was one of those background skaters from the ice show, remember? The one who asked if I could help him untie the back of his uniform?"

Tom remembered. The skater had been quite attractive, probably only two or three years older than them. At the time he had thought it was odd that a skater asked some random teenager to help him with his outfit, but now it kind of made sense. Tom winced as a small spark of something flared in his gut. He placed it as jealously that a pretty female skater hadn't come up and started hitting on him.

"And… and the other guy?" Tom didn't miss the flash of guilt that streaked across his cousin's face.

"Promise you won't get mad, okay?" Tom did some odd combination of nodding and shrugging, but it was enough for Jake and he sighed. "You know your friend Emery?" He stopped there and it took a second for Tom to piece it together. He grew furious in a matter of two seconds.

"You made out with my best friend?" he demanded, pushing himself to stand. Jake stood too, looking apologetic.

"It was the last time he came over-"

"That was two days ago!"

"And he kind of cornered me in the kitchen and said he thought I was cute-"

"Liar!"

"And he just pushed me against the counter and-"

"Okay I get it!" Tom half-shouted. "What the hell is wrong with you? First you've been hiding your sexuality from me for god knows how long, and then you go and make out with my best friend-"

"He started it."

"And you- you… so what, are you two dating now or something?"

"No, of course not," Jake immediately replied, but something caught his attention. Was it just him or was Tom… pouting? "Are you… are you jealous?"

"What?" Tom snapped, but his cheeks burned pink. "Of course not!"

"Oh… oh crap," Jake said, suddenly realizing something. "You like Emery don't you?" He didn't really notice Tom's utterly confused look, but continued to spew out apologies. "I am so sorry, man, I had no idea! I swear, if I knew you had the hots for him, I would've shoved him off immediately! God, I'm so… but I swear, I freaking swear that there's nothing between us! It was a one-shot deal and it'll never happen again-"

"Jake!" Tom finally exploded, catching the blonde's attention. "Jake, it's… I don't like Emery, okay? I just… I got mad because… I guess it's just that it always seems like my friends like you better than me." He paused. "A lot better, in Emery's case. And it's fine that they like you too, but… then you hang out with them more than you do with me." He bit his lower lip stubbornly. "You're my cousin, not theirs."

"You weren't jealous of them knowing me?" Tom hesitantly shook his head. "So you were jealous of me knowing them?" Tom shook his head harder, but his face flushed and he broke eye contact. Jake grinned. "You are jealous of me knowing them!" Tom covered his face with his hands and shook his head weakly, leaning back into the wall for support. Jake stalked closer, pinning Tom to the wall by planting both palms on either side of the brunette's head. "You absolute dork. The only reason I was nice to them was because they were your friends!"

"Of course, it's not like you ever hooked up with them or anything. Oh wait, yeah you did," Tom snapped. Jake sighed.

"I said I was sorry."

"That doesn't fix it! You hooked up with my best friend! There are so many things wrong with that!"

"Like what?" Jake asked sharply. "What part of it is making you so mad? Is it that I'm your cousin? Or that he's your best friend? Is it that you didn't know? Or," he added in a low tone, "is it that we're both guys?" Tom closed his eyes and bit his lip, flattening his hands against the wall behind him. Jake idly watched the other boy's teeth sinking into his lip. Catching himself, he shook his head quickly and focused on Tom's response.

"It's not about that. It's just… why Emery? There's a million other guys out there, so why him?"

"I told you that he's the one who kissed me."

"And I'm sure you put up such a fight," Tom said sarcastically. Jake rolled his eyes, shifting his weight a little. He was still blocking Tom from moving from his spot against the wall, and Jake's slight movement caused Tom to realize just how close his cousin was to him. Their heads were only about five or six inches away, but it wasn't exactly like Tom could move back.

"It's because he was my type," Jake said, breaking Tom's thoughts and forcing him to remember what they were talking about. Jake was looking pointedly at the wall beside Tom's head. "I have a thing for brunettes."

"But he's… he's totally not like you! He's a Mathlete and he's socially awkward and he… and he…" Tom stared at Jake stupidly. "He's exactly like me," he murmured, although it was said more in realization than in accusation.

He knew something was up when Jake didn't react, didn't say anything, just stared at the wall and scratched at the wallpaper with a fingernail. Tom kind of just stared at him for a few minutes. If Jake had a thing for him, then that would explain a lot. Like why he always gave Tom food from his cooking class. Or why he threw temper tantrums when Tom went to hang out with other people.

Or why he was okay with everyone thinking that they were dating.

To test his theory (that's all it was, just a test) Tom lifted his hands and curled his fingers into the blonde's belt loops, tugging slightly. The response was immediate. Jake's eyes snapped over to Tom, and a bright flush smoothed across his cheeks and nose. Tom flicked his thumbs under the hem of Jake's shirt, pressing lightly into the hollow of his hipbones.

"Tom."

"Jake."

"What are you …"

"I don't know," Tom admitted, not moving to do anything else than he already had. He had only meant to see what Jake's response would be. But he hadn't exactly thought it through, and, meaningfully or not, he had put them in a most interesting and awkward position. "Am I your type?"

"I didn't say that," Jake muttered.

"You said someone exactly like me was your type." Tom yanked on Jake's belt loops when he didn't respond quickly enough. Jake ended up nearly falling onto his cousin, only stopping himself on time by rapidly placing both hands on Tom's chest and pushing himself away a little.

"It's just a stupid thing, okay, so just forget about it," he finally said, pushing himself a few inches away. "Just one of those stupid things that people sometimes get for their cousins, okay? No big deal."

"It kind of is."

"No it's not!" Jake burst out, sounding almost desperate. "It doesn't have to change anything, and we can just pretend that I just happened to make out with a kid who was kind of like you-"

"Exactly like me."

"But it was just some stupid coincidence!" He gave a rough shove and heaved himself off of the wall and backed up rapidly, causing Tom to release his grip on Jake's belt loops. Jake backed all the way up to the opposite wall and pressed himself against it as if hoping it would absorb him and get him out of the situation.

"Jake, calm down-"

"It's just a stupid little thing, okay? Not even a crush, all right, just… just a stupid little thing," he mumbled, sliding down the wall and tilting his head back to rest against the wall. "Just a stupid, pointless, disgusting little thing that needs to stop but it won't." Jake sat there miserably, closing his eyes and breathing slightly erratically. Tom kind of just stared at him, trying to figure out what he should do.

"Jake, I don't-"

"I know, okay? Please don't rub it in," the blonde muttered, covering his face with his large hands. Tom sighed.

"I wasn't going to say what you thought I was going to," he said finally. Jake didn't move. "You thought I was going to say that I don't feel the same way, right?" Jake peered out between two fingers.

"What were you going to say, then?" Tom bit his lip.

"That I don't know what to say."

"Because that's just so much better," Jake said, closing the gap in his fingers and shielding his face completely. Tom inhaled deeply, trying to think of what he should do.

Admittedly, he kind of had a 'stupid cousin thing' for Jake. A little. They had grown up so close, and were one of each other's closest friends. Had Jake not been related to him, and had just been a really good friend, Tom probably would've had a Big Bisexual Realization a few years ago and hooked up with the kid then.

But they were cousins; they were blood related. And on any other day, he would've given his cousin a big hell no and been on his merry way. But today…

Well, the entire school thought they were dating anyway, right?

Tom knelt down in front of Jake and gently peeled his hands away, revealing startled, bright blue eyes.

"You know, I'm starting to think you told your class you give me your food on purpose," he commented quietly, placing Jake's hands lightly on the floor at his sides. Tom not-so-subtly wedged himself between Jake's knees, bringing himself as close to his cousin as possible without falling awkwardly on top of him. Jake kind of just stared at him, like he wasn't sure what the hell Tom was doing. And really, he had no idea.

Well, maybe some idea, but he wasn't about to go and make assumptions and ruin whatever plan Tom had.

"I didn't mean to give them that whole idea," Jake replied cautiously, hoping against hope that Tom wasn't about to sock him or something.

"But you don't mind them having it."

"I don't care what they think."

Tom placed his own hands on the wall behind Jake, just above the blonde's shoulders. "Is that the only reason why you don't mind?" He leaned his face a little bit closer to Jake's, and the blonde could swear that he saw a smirk forming on his cousin's face.

Now, Jake was never a kid who would stand by and let someone else control the situation and watch him flounder. No, whenever possible, Jake would gather his seemingly endless confidence and take charge to get what he wanted. So it shouldn't have been a surprise when a determined glint flashed in his eyes and he lifted his hands to grab at Tom's shirt, bunching it tightly and dragging the brunette right up to his face. Tom's eyes widened, and Jake realized that his actions may have been a teensy bit aggressive, but without further ado, he shrugged off the pounds of doubt and heaved Tom's mouth to his own, pressing them messily together and trying not to groan at the absolute awesomeness of it.

Tom kind of just stared at him stupidly for a few minutes, watching as Jake kept their mouths welded together and had his eyes squeezed shut. After just a few moments, Jake pushed Tom away, as if the brunette had been the one holding on, and kind of just sat there with his eyes closed, expecting the worst.

But instead he felt Tom grip his chin lightly and tilt it upwards, and then he felt the brilliance of Tom's mouth pressed gently to his.

Tom had no idea what he was doing, and his entire body felt dizzy and fuzzy and overheated, but it didn't matter as he leaned forward and kissed Jake. And yeah, he could totally be cool with throwing away his (admittedly small) reputation for this.

They broke apart (again) after just a few moments. Tom was still confused and his knees hurt from kneeling so long and he was still a little afraid of trying the full make-out thing with his cousin, and oh Christ he had kissed his cousin for god's sake, but it was nice and Jake tasted good and he was actually a whole lot more okay with it than he had previously thought he'd be.

They sat there, staring stupidly at each other and kind of grinning like idiots, but it wasn't awkward or tense.

Until the door to the closet swung open and there stood two girls Tom recognized to be in their grade. One was a quiet, thick girl who rarely spoke to boys, and seemed utterly shocked by finding two of the male creatures in the art closet.

The other girl immediately gasped and stomped forward, glaring down at Jake.

"So this is Tom? Seriously, Jake? I am so much better looking than him," she insisted huffily. Jake gently pushed at Tom's chest until he stood, and pulled himself to his feet. They both turned to face the girls.

"Tom, this is the girl I told you about. The one who wanted my cake. Your cake," Jake explained, and Tom made a silent 'oh'. He eyed the girl, who was petite and had round hips and quite a bit of lip-gloss on. She wasn't particularly pretty, and Tom took slight offence that she thought he was worse looking than her.

"It could've been mine, if Jake woke up and realized that cousins aren't people who you hook up with," the girl pouted. Jake rolled his eyes.

"Emily, this is Tom. My…" He looked at Tom questioningly. The brunette looked away nervously, not wanting to look at Jake while he introduced him as his cousin. The girls had already walked in on them in a goddamn closet, so there was no real doubt about what they had been doing, and the fact that they were cousins was already established. But Tom dreaded the inevitable cousin because that… well, that was just rubbing acid in the wound. But it would be the truth, wouldn't it? Even though they tainted the meaning of cousin, Jake had every opportunity right then to throw it all away, clean the slate, by giving the truth. His cousin. God, Tom felt so stupid.

"This is my boyfriend."

Tom winced on instinct, but instantly realized that what he had expected to hear and what he had actually heard were two entirely different things. Jake reached over and gripped his hand, tangling their fingers and squeezing pointedly. Tom glanced at him to find the blonde staring at him expectantly, and Tom realized that his silence wasn't doing anything to confirm Jake's statement.

"Uh, yeah," he squeaked out, clearing his throat immediately after. The girl's- Emily, he thought it was- jaw dropped.

"So go spread the word. And stuff. Whatever it is you bigmouth gossip freaks do," Jake waved idly and slipped past the gaping girl, pulling his cousin with him. He tugged Tom all the way out of the art classroom and down the hall, past the lockers and out of the school building. In fact, Jake didn't stop walking until Tom finally snapped out of his stupor.

"Wait! My books are still in my locker," he exclaimed, planting his feet on the sidewalk trailing from the school and refusing to move. Jake tried to keep pulling him by his hand, but Tom was stubborn and stayed put. "I have homework to do, stupid. I gotta go back."

"You can skip one night of homework," Jake said flatly.

"No, I can't. I'd like to stay on honor roll, if you don't mind."

"I do when it interferes with my life," Jake stated, and with a sharp tug he had Tom stumbling forwards a few steps and right into his arms.

"Hey!" Tom cried, colliding with Jake's chest. "How does my homework interfere with your life?"

"Because if we get your books, you're gonna study and do school stuff for the rest of the night."

"Not the rest of the night-"

"And I want to go out." Tom stared at him blankly, still not understanding what that had to do with him. "With you."

"You can go do whatever it is by yourself. You're a big boy-"

"On a date, moron."

"Oh." Tom kind of just opened and closed his mouth several times, and Jake was tempted to call him a fishy but he knew that if he wanted something from Tom, name-calling wasn't (usually) the way to go. "Oh."

"Yeah, oh."

"Oh."

"Is that all you're gonna say?"

"Um." Tom blinked at him, still leaning into him with his arms bent between their chests and his hands half-heartedly clenched into fists. "Um."

"Usually there's a yes or no given."

"Um. Yes. Right?" Tom asked hesitantly, still looking entirely unsure. Jake grinned and squeezed him tightly, getting a startled ack! from the other teen.

"Good." He finally released the poor, squashed brunette and opted instead for wrapping an arm around his shoulders. It was ingenious, really, because outsiders and family members wouldn't question a gesture like that, but he got to keep Tom close. Plus, whenever he lightly brushed a thumb along Tom's neck, the other boy shivered minutely and Jake liked that reaction even after the tenth time.

"We will have to stop at the grocery store at some point," Tom stated about halfway through their walk home. Jake glanced at him.

"Why?"

"You need ingredients."

"What? For what?" Jake asked, letting his arm momentarily slip down to curl around Tom's back and letting his hand grasp the brunette's hip. Tom gave him a mock-glare and crossed his arms, forcing Jake to give him a little of unwanted space.

"You still owe me a strawberry cake, stupid."