Title: Turn Right and Continue Down Confusion Alley
Author: The Unintended Muse
Warnings: Boy on boy, beware, homophobes! Also some language, but nothing you can't handle, 'cause you're tough! =D
Disclaimer: I don't own cherub, I don't make any money making this, yada-yada-yada. I already tried mailing Rob and ask whether there could possibly be some more James/Kyle, but he continues on to claim that James is heterosexual. Bah, that's BS, we all know that he and Kyle are meant to fucking be! :D
Summary: When James run into trouble, he can always rely on Kyle… to confuse him like hell. That's what best friends are for, right?
A/N: I was inspired to write this little piece one evening when I searched through CHERUB fan fiction on FF-net, and I was surprised to see that there are people other than me that write James/Kyle slash! And it was such a nice surprise that I decided I had kept my readers waiting for too long, and that it was time to create something new! Now, I've been tumbling with a lot of ideas recently, but none of them ever turned into something good. This wasn't planned, it wasn't thought through, I just had it in my head and had to write it down. Can't promise it's brilliant, but it's been too long since I've uploaded something, and I wanted to just write something. So, here goes nothing, hope you enjoy it.
He stomped loudly from one end of the room to the other, stubbornly keeping his eyes on his feet. Kerry's shrill voice rang through the room, tearing apart his eardrums and he was pretty sure that the entire campus would be able to listen in on their fight. Had no one ever told her how to be discrete? Surely not cherub, no!
"… and I just can't believe that after everything we've been through, your mind is still filled with all those filthy ideas! Stupid, sexist thoughts and childish… James, are you even listening to me?" His name, screeched in Kerry's frustrated tone, broke through his daze and he was suddenly paying attention.
James glanced up at her briefly and nodded, before rolling his eyes and dropping his shoulders. He was seriously screwed – how could he save this without having to go through a long, painful, boring fight? Why did she need to yell this much? Did all girls react like this whenever their boyfriends tried to appreciate their body? Or maybe that was just Kerry.
"Look Kerry, it's not that I'm not listening, it's just… I've heard you say this about 53 times, practically. And that's probably only through last month!" James couldn't help the heavy sigh that escaped him, running one large hand through his tangled blonde hair. "All I ever wanted was to have a normal relationship where I can kiss my girlfriend whenever I want to–"
But he broke off that sentence as he once again looked up at the girl's pale face. Her eyes were now narrowed into angry slits, her hands on her hips in that pissed-off pose girls do. Not good. She glared at him angrily, lips reduced to one thin, pink line.
"Don't tell me you've counted how many fights we've had!" She sneered, in a tone that warned him not to push her any further. Sometimes he was afraid that she'd literally explode! Like, with her guts all over the place and everything. She tended to look like she was about to at the best of times, that was for sure. James shrugged, not sure whether he should get on his knees to beg for her forgiveness yet; or if he should try to participate whole-heartedly in this fight, which he really wasn't all too eager to do.
"James!" Kerry growled, her voice becoming more and more threatening. "Do you think this is funny?" She almost spat at him, stepping closer and looking directly into his face. He tried to avoid any possible eye contact with the outraged teen. She looked about ready to start breathing fire, her eyes now wide open in near fury. She was certainly extra hormonal or something, today. But James was only feeling really bored of this argument and found no humour in slagging her less-than-attractive 'angry face' right then.
"No. In fact, I find this really annoying Kerry. I mean, I know we have to talk about our problems, but I don't think yelling counts for–"
James staggered backwards slightly, rubbing at his now red cheek and biting his lip as to not break out in a howl of pain. He glared furiously at Kerry, who had just crossed her arms and turned swiftly away from him, her nose high in the air. Go figure.
"What the hell was that for?" James shouted. Kerry didn't answer him though. Clearly she had progressed from the "pissed-off-and-bitchy" to the ignoring and "bow-down-before-me-in-my-presence" stage, where nothing short of him kissing her feet and begging her for mercy would help him. Well, she would be begging for mercy when he was done with her.
"Seriously Kerry, I don't get this…I don't get you!" James was the one screaming now, loosing whatever semblance of self-control he'd had not moments ago. "You want me to be a loving and caring boyfriend; you want me to compliment you and show you that I like you. But at the same time you can't handle me kissing you more than once a day in front of your stupid, stuck-up friends? What's your problem? Why can't you just decide whether you want me or not?"
He knew well enough that she'd storm out of the door in just about ten seconds, but he couldn't stop himself – he was hanging on to the very end of his patience for her insufferable bitchiness. It was as if she could do nothing but complain, instead of – oh, well – enjoying their relationship maybe?
Exactly on par with his estimation, Kerry just sent him a burning hot look of rage before spinning right around 180 degrees, flicking her black mane in his face and leaving the room. Not without slamming the door behind her, of course. Can't forget the dramatic exit. And, as James always would, he opened the door and stared after her, knowing she wouldn't leave completely without having the last word.
"Well, if you hate me and my friends so much, maybe you should just stop seeing us - me - Adams!" She shrieked across the hallway, before slamming her own door. He rolled his eyes. Bam. And then it was over – again. Or was it? Something told him that they'd keep fighting till the end of their days, as long as they knew each other. Whether they were together at the time or not. But when they did cut to the chase, they couldn't really cope without each other.
Or could they?
James had been doing fine in those last few months before they got back together. Honestly he didn't mind the quiet, laid-back outlook being single afforded him. It seemed that whenever Kerry was at the forefront of his life however, all he was met with was bitchy attitudes and a girl who took the phrase 'playing hard-to-get' way too seriously.
James could only retire to his room, and so he tried to ignore the fact that every cherub would know by the morning that he was single again. He didn't really want to talk to anyone about it – Lauren would either be mad at him for upsetting Kerry, as it was of course, always his fault that they broke up; or she would joke about him messing things up. Again. Nope, he definitely didn't need that.
Michael wouldn't understand, because he had a perfectly happy relationship with Gabrielle, and the boy just didn't get how others could have problems in their relationships – why couldn't everybody be like Gabrielle and Michael? Bruce wasn't really the ladies man, and he sure as hell didn't know how it felt to have trouble with them. So if he were to go visit Bruce, it would only be because he needed to kick some ass in some random computer game. And, somehow, he didn't really feel like gaming all night after this. Generally, Kerry always seemed to suck out all his energy that he reserved for things like playing Fifa and having all-nighters. The things the boy usually spent all their time doing.
Actually, he found himself wanting more than anything, to be with his closest friend Kyle, who was with him no matter what state he was in. He would make jokes, yes probably. Most likely he'd be a jerk until the moment he saw how mad James really was and then he'd find some way to lighten up his mood. Whether it was through talking or just watching TV with him, being with Kyle was always the better solution after one of his rows with Kerry.
James sat in the office-chair in the middle of his room, spinning around until his eyes felt like they were rolling around in his skull, his head already dizzy with all these thoughts. One thing was for sure, he was not going to sit in his room and sulk – he was going to find someone whom he could force to keep him company, and that someone was going to be Kyle Blueman.
He knocked three times. James had always thought it'd be cool if they got a secret knock or something, but they hadn't. It was kind of disappointing, them being best friends and everything, but he'd told himself he could live with it and he had…
He should suggest that they got a secret knock, shouldn't he?
James entered the room before Kyle had barely answered the door. He smiled wryly at his best mate, who looked a bit confused. Kyle had thought James and Kerry were hanging out tonight and had set his mind upon doing some homework. So, he was surprised to see James standing in his doorway like that.
"Uh, hey mate, what are you doing here?" Kyle asked, slightly bewildered. It wasn't like James to skip out on an opportunity to grope his girlfriend in private, not that he didn't do that in public whenever given the chance. James glared at him with a sulky, put-out expression.
"Yeah, don't let me come in or anything, that's OK with me!" He knew he shouldn't act like such a PMS-ing girl, but he'd expected a bit more friendliness and a bit less… well surprise, from the brunette. Okay, so he was in a bad mood tonight and was being selfish and stupid. But was it really so wrong to be after the fight he's just gone through? But then Kyle just grinned and stepped aside to let the younger boy in. When James entered, Kyle tousled his hair playfully before closing his door.
"Sorry mate, I wasn't thinking for a second. But how come you're not with Kerry right now? Thought you guys were hanging out tonight?" James rolled his eyes at that and threw down his arms in defeat. He felt a bit grumpy right now, maybe Kerry was a bad influence on his temper.
"Well, cause I'm not WITH Kerry anymore, dumbass!" He said, as if it was well known fact. But then he was sighing, knowing that he shouldn't be so harsh on his best friend. He calmed himself a little before he decided to continue and explain, as Kyle's even more confused expression started to become bemused as well. "You didn't hear all the yelling and head-smacking and door-slamming before?" James asked hopelessly, walking to Kyle's bed and collapsing on it. It seemed somewhat softer than his own, much more comfortable. James breathed in deeply… it smelled nice too. He didn't know what the scent was. Just that it smelled like Kyle. He'd never admit it to the guy obviously, but he had a really great smell.
James thought maybe he should hug Kyle some more. Though he didn't really noticing the direction of his thoughts as he turned his head slightly into the sheets to get more of that smell, while Kyle wasn't watching. Though he did feel pretty damn stupid doing it, but it wasn't like it was illegal or something, right? Not as far as he knew.
"What?" James heard Kyle ask, the boy now completely puzzled and he raised his head from the comforter to look at the older boy. Kyle had been listening to The Police all night, and had turned the volume up because he wanted to block out the world when he studied. His forehead creased, the line between his eyebrows deepening in frustration? "You guys are breaking up- broken up? Again?" James couldn't help but smiling before he shook his head. Were they? He couldn't tell anymore, couldn't tell whether they were going out or not, even when they claimed to actually be seeing each other.
"I'm not really sure anymore," he sighed, rubbing his still sore cheek. That had been some slap. James dropped his head back into the sheets on Kyle's bed. "I mean, I can't tell what she wants anymore, she's like a freaking schizo dude. One day she's all happy and wants to see me, the next I'm the lowest, most disgusting thing on earth. You know what I mean? She just can't decide whether she wants to be with me or not and I'm growing sick of it to be honest, I …"
Kyle sat down beside him and put his hand on top of James'. He smiled softly at his friend, but also grinned a bit. James lost his voice for some reason and didn't bother to continue.
"Jamie, you're freaking out. You do know that, don't you?" Kyle chuckled softly and stroked one long-fingered hand across stray locks blonde hair, maybe a little bit too lovingly. Suddenly realising what he was doing, he jerked his hand away as if he'd been electrocuted, a slight flush staining his cheeks. He cleared his voice in a cough.
"But what happened with you this time? You had a fight?" Kyle didn't really seem sincerely interested in what had happened, maybe because he knew that that wouldn't be anything new. It was the story of James' life. Kerry being a bitch, James doing something wrong, the incident being the last straw to make the relationship fall to pieces again.
"Yes, we had a fight, and I barely fucking remember what it was about anymore. It's always the same, the same bullshit being fired at me. Like she just does it for fun. Hooks up with me, points out all of my flaws, makes a big scene and then dumps me." James blew his hair out of his eyes in a puff of air. "Why do I keep doing this, Kyle? Why do I always try to get her back?"
James felt stupid then: as if the other boy would know what to tell him! No one knew the answer for those questions, probably not Kerry and obviously not even James himself. And as he'd told Kyle, he was growing tired of trying to solve their relationship issues. Kyle flopped down beside him, and turned his head to look at James. Kyle stared at the other for some time and James couldn't help but hold his gaze, before Kyle broke the stare and glanced up toward the ceiling.
"Maybe it's because you still feel the connection," he suggested. "I mean, maybe you're just in love with her, and have got no bloody clue of what to do about it because she's… well a bad party, you get me? Sometimes," Kyle said, his voice slowly drifting away, "sometimes you pick the wrong boy or girl, and you're stuck with them, just because you feel that they're so damn perfect for you…" Kyle bit his lip and this time James noticed the slight flush spreading over his cheeks. It was a bit sweet, kind of. But weird. But still sweet. James had never thought Kyle had been in love – in relationships, yes. A few times, but never anything serious. He felt sorry for his best friend at that point, because it was so much easier to get a girlfriend or a boyfriend when you were straight. Kyle had to jump out of the closet every time he would try to get laid by someone who didn't… well, pick up the fact that he was gay.
"I dunno, mate," James mumbled. He noticed how close they lay on the bed, James' arms still resting along his sides and Kyle's the same, his fingers nervously picking at loose threads on his stonewashed jeans. Usually, James would find this awkward. Mainly because he knew that his best friend was gay and that sentimental, mushy things were a big no-no around the boy. But right then, the slight intimacy actually somehow comforted him a bit. Their hands almost touched with every nervous twitch of Kyle's pale hand.
"I don't know if I'm in love with her. I just… I don't feel like fighting for her anymore. I get bored and I'm sick of getting bored. I want to go on with my life, our relationship. I don't wanna get stuck in the stage were girls still have cooties, you know? Maybe she's just too immature for me. Maybe I need someone older, someone more grown up …" James trailed off as he realised what he was saying didn't really make sense to himself. He wasn't entirely sure where he was getting all this from. Kerry was grown up, or at least she thought so herself. She was smart, she was responsible and she could easily take care of herself and others. But one thing Kerry just lacked in was romantic maturity. The fact that it still embarrassed her when James tried to kiss her in places other than her cheek in public was beginning to get simply… annoying. "I'm stupid, right?"
Kyle chuckled again, and turned to tousle James' hair again. James was beginning to notice how much Kyle liked to touch him. He didn't think he'd ever noticed it before. Was it normal that it felt so… normal?
"You're not stupid, you're a teenager, for fuck's sake! You're supposed to mess up your relationships all the time and fall in love with the wrong people – not that Kerry necessarily is wrong for you, but you probably get the point right? If you didn't do all these things… then I'd begin to get worried," Kyle told him with a warm smile. A heartfelt smile, which James couldn't help but return.
"How come you always…" James bit his lip and broke away from the now questioning gaze, as he considered his words thoroughly before ending his sentence. He then looked directly into Kyle's eyes. "Say the right things?"
Kyle grinned wryly. "Say the right thing? I'd rather do the right things, or maybe…"
James ended the last sentence before his best friend did.
"…feel the right things?" the words were just above a whisper in the air.
Kyle nodded thoughtfully, the cute blush colouring his cheeks once again. What was he thinking, James wondered to himself. What was constantly making him blush? And, more importantly, who was he thinking of that made him blush in that way? Because it was clear to James that Kyle had got the hots for someone. But who could it be?
"Why, aren't we being philosophic tonight, Jamie?" He asked with the same, lopsided grin. "It can't be healthy for us – kind of gay, isn't it?" James grinned, but rolled onto his side and, leaning over Kyle, smacked the boy's head.
"You just had to bring up the whole queer thing, now didn't you?" He asked, laughing over his words. "Just when I'd un-freaked out, you –" James, lying on top of his best friend now, was cut off as Kyle pulled him down further. Kyle pressed his lips against James', and met the soft opposite pair. He sighed in pleasure, and James could feel his muscles tensing. His mind was suddenly completely aware of the closed eyes in front of him, the soft breathing from under him, Kyle's scent overwhelming them as close as they were. His body was alert all over and he could feel the tingling burn of skin-on-skin and the relaxed but toned muscles against him, all over him, as if he was excited over this… madness!
It didn't immediately occur to James what was going on - or how he was supposed to be reacting, even - before he could feel Kyle's hand resting on his back. That gentle touch was what shocked him into movement, however and he quickly pushed himself back. Their lips parted, the kiss broken. Their heads were still inches from each other. James was speechless, out of breath. He didn't know if it was because of how long they'd held the kiss, or… He glared into Kyle's eyes, unable to take his eyes off the other boy.
"… and then you do that." James finally finished, more as an afterthought than anything else.
Kyle suddenly looked perplexed, probably only becoming aware then, of what he'd just done. He opened his mouth to say something, but couldn't get in a word before James had jumped off him and covered his face in his hands. Was he disgusted with Kyle? James felt his voice snap as he shrieked out.
"You… you KISSED ME?" He looked at Kyle, who had sat up on the bed, his head hung low with guilt. Shame? …regret? James couldn't quite understand it – understand what had happened just moments ago, on this very bed, with this very boy. His best friend, his … his gay best friend. Who obviously had feelings for someone. Not him. No, it couldn't be him. That would be crazy, wrong… right? But if it was, it should feel more wrong than this!
"You- what- I don't… you KISSED ME?" James just shouted again, not finding anything else to say. That he could say. His eyebrows were creased and his eyes were wide, with some anger but mostly confusion. He did nothing, just continued to watch his friend, pinning him with an accusing gaze that wasn't very convincing. Kyle found it hard to meet his eyes.
"Sorry, but you- I thought- you were the one who implied… oh hell, I don't know what just happened, can't we just forget about it?" Kyle pleaded his best friend, he was starting to panic a little but knew he couldn't let James see that. James shook his head and ran a hand through his messy hair. The hair that Kyle had tousled and felt so many times this evening. The way he touched him, the way it would sometimes feel like some strange sensation tingled through his fingers and across his skin – James did not want to think of it.
"I… I what? You think I brought this on myself? That I led you on!" He sounded almost hysterical now. Panicking, obviously. Freaked out to the farthest corners of his desperate mind. Kyle shrugged, and kind of hugged himself, arms wrapped around his torso, curling into himself in fear of James' reaction. He didn't look directly at James. Couldn't.
"No, I just- you seemed so- we were so… didn't you feel it too?" He then asked, a desperate edge to Kyle's voice and it wavered on breaking into a sob. God forbid, James didn't think he could take that! But how could he have imagined James liking the closeness and the intimacy before? Was he really that deep in? That it was all only in his head?
"Sorry mate, I … I would never have thought I'd been sending out those kind of signals, really. Sorry if I…" James trailed off as he could tell that Kyle was both highly uncomfortable with the situation, and definitely not happy with the way it was panning out. Wasn't it sort of James' responsibility and duty as a friend to comfort him, then? He moved closer to the other boy, and couldn't help but noticing that again, the closeness didn't scare him as much as before. Maybe he'd learned from the many fights he'd had with Kerry, that he shouldn't be afraid of it – that it was okay to have this kind of friendship, to love one another without it meaning you were attracted to your friend. Which in this case, Kyle apparently was. Sadly, because James had no idea of how to deal with it – he could barely deal with hugging the boy, let alone accepting that they had just kissed - he couldn't help feeling apprehensive. He didn't want Kyle to misunderstand him again. But, at the same time James found himself wanting nothing but to do it – to hug him, of course. Nothing else but to hug him.
There was really nothing to say – what should be said? He was sorry, but James knew Kyle knew that. Kyle understood that James would never hurt him intentionally. So the blonde walked right up to the confused boy and just hugged his best friend tightly. Feeling a rush going through his stomach as he smelled Kyle, and felt Kyle. Felt him being so close to him. What was wrong with James today? He was confusing himself. Kyle hugged him back eagerly, his hand clenching James' t-shirt. He clung to the larger blonde, neither of them wanting to let go, but they knew they couldn't stay this way forever.
That would be nice though, James thought. And somehow, that thought became very hard to ignore.