The Bully, the Pussy, and the Sociopath

Chapter XVI

They're not society's ideal example of a normal relationship; they're about one too many for the comfort of the masses, and they could probably check off more than one box on a list of abusive relationship warning signs. It doesn't mean they care any less about each other, the exact opposite is more likely, but they can't help it if their dynamic with each other makes others uncomfortable. Their relationship just works a little differently, a little more violently with a little more fighting that has the bonus of a hell of a lot more communicating, whether they want it or not. Petey's happy for it, but Jimmy and Gary argue that they could do without.

Dates aren't a common thing. They hang out. Of course they hang out, they're friends as well as lovers and, in Petey's case, the only friends he'd had before Trevor. But dates are different than just hanging out with someone you're going to take home afterward to get hot in the sheets. Not that they don't get hot in the sheets after everything they do. Or before, for that matter. During even. They bang a lot, but that's not the point. Long story short, they hang out a lot and fuck even more, but dates are an almost never sort of thing.

It's not that Gary doesn't enjoy going on dates, because he does. He'll be damned if he ever admits it to anyone, but he like how cheesy and domestic it is. The hand holding and the public displays of something that looks suspiciously like cuddling. Being all over each other and, for a brief period of time, not giving a fuck who sees. They're disgustingly in love buried deep beyond the teenage lust and aggressive demeanor of broken boys; Gary thinks its important to have dates every so often as an outlet for those feelings so they don't walk around, acting like lovesick pussies for the town to see.

Usually when they plan to go in public for a date, which Petey maintains is a requirement if they want to grace it with the title of a date, they make it goal to find somewhere semi-private. Restaurants work really well, like the diner they went to for their first date where the waitstaff hates them, but puts up with their bullshit pretty well anyway. They're in public, but they're not specifically in the eyes of the public. Anyone paying any attention to them in a restaurant is at fault as far as they figure. In reality though, date or not, they make quite a spectacle of themselves. Or Gary and Jimmy do, anyway.

So far, they've avoided the carnival for good reason. Gary finds it harder to behave in large crowds of people, and he doesn't have patience for the lines. There's just too little payout for such a large investment of time. Jimmy had had to bite back a snide comment about how long their relationship would have to last before an ending would still be well worth the time invested in trying to have them for himself. He likes to rile Gary up, get him angry and bothered where there's a little fight in him when it's time to get naked, but he doesn't want to poke at any open wounds. The topic of breaking up, even jokingly, is off limits.

Jimmy doesn't have an opinion either way on the carnival; he's just not dying to go. He'd had his fun freshman year with long nights spent among the flashing carnival rides, passing out long after curfew in the beach house and even a couple of times on the beach itself. Though, the very idea of having to spend a night grounding a jittery, overstimulated Gary has always had him shying away from the place as a potential date location. It isn't exactly his ideal after-date activity.

The problem lies in Pete. Petey really, really loves the carnival. Has always loved the carnival since his first bleary-eyed visit with his parents. Both his parents. His mother in particular had always found the place very appealing for artistic reasons, settling him on a blanket tucked away at the edge of the fairground, next to her easel and paints.

He doesn't remember, but he has pictures. Petey loves the carnival and hasn't been in years. Not since it suddenly wasn't cool to make carnival dates with your dad. There hadn't been anyone else to go with.

They know, instinctively through mystical boyfriend senses, that he wants to go. He doesn't have to tell them for them to know. Petey's too considerate to ask that of Gary and too timid to explain his reasoning for wanting it in the first place. ut Gary knows Pete, probably better than anyone, and he knows what the carnival means to the younger boy. So they're going; end of story.

—-

"When did it get so cloudy?" Petey asks, staring out the bus window sadly.

"Dunno. But it works out. There'll be less people and they double the ride times when there's nobody there," Gary says, nudging at Jimmy in protest at being shoved into a window seat. Petey sighs and slinks down in his seat.

"What if it rains?" Petey points out, pouting. Gary perks up at that.

"Do you think it will?" he asks brightly, receiving an odd look from Jimmy. Gary stares back before shrugging. "I like the rain. Nobody said we have to leave if it rains. They'll keep the rides running." Jimmy rolls his eyes at the response and prods Gary in the hip.

"Stop squirming and annoying me. You'll get out when we get there," he instructs, hissing when Gary prods him back in retaliation.

"I'm not a dog, I don't need to be caged in on the bus," Gary argues.

"No, dogs are better behaved. Maybe a puppy," Jimmy agrees, smirking.

"I will piss on everything you love," the older boy threatens, crossing his arms.

"Hear that, Petey? Gary wants to try out watersports," Jimmy says, keeping his grin focused on Gary whose face goes shockingly blank for a few moments while processes the comeback.

"That's disgusting. I can read between the lines. Keep your hidden affectionate comments away from me," Gary groans, turning towards his own window. Jimmy rolls his eyes and turns slightly toward Pete, but worms an arm to wrap around Gary's waist. As a position, it's a little awkward, but it's not good to leave Gary feeling trapped and abandoned.

"It's probably not going to rain," Jimmy reassures, rolling his eyes when he feels Gary slink into the seat.

"We could go to the park if it rains," Gary throws out, grinning a filthy grin reserved for talks about sex.

"What is your obsession with the park? Besides the sex, obviously," Jimmy asks.

"Having sex in the park is fun," Petey points out, biting his tongue at the statement. Petey's not usually very open about talking about sex unless they're actually having sex, so it's always funny to watch him get all embarrassed about it.

"That's because you're a dirty pervert!" Gary yells, whimpering softly when Jimmy punches him lightly in the stomach in warning.

"Behave," he chastises, glaring at the few people on the bus still staring at them.

"I like the park," Gary whines, like that's what he's in trouble for. "I wasn't allowed around other people's children when I was little. Nobody wanted to play with me except Zoe, and she's poor, so that wasn't ever going to be a thing outside of school."

"Petey played with you," Jimmy points out. Gary rolls his eyes, like even thinking the statement was stupid.

"Pete didn't want to play with me," Gary argues.

"I really didn't, though," Petey agrees, smiling at the older boy. "I play with you now." Gary sends him a filthy look.

"You play with something of mine, yeah," he flirts, pouting when Jimmy pushes him back in the seat.

"The point being, you were allowed to play with Pete," Jimmy says, bringing them back on topic. Gary shrugs.

"Pete's not poor. He's not living in the Vale, but they've always been well off. At least enough that his mom didn't have to work," Gary points out.

"You don't talk about your mom a lot," Jimmy tests, pulling Pete to sit between them. Mostly on top of, really. The boy comes willingly, and it's a squeeze, but they've never really had complaints about being squished together in small spaces.

"Don't remember much," Petey says with a shrug. Jimmy takes that as a sign that it's not touchy enough of a subject that he'll regret bringing it up on a city bus.

"But Gary does?" Jimmy asks, eyebrow raised. Everything Jimmy knows about Petey's mother, he knows from what Gary has said, and even that's not much.

"Gary was older when she died," Pete offers, but it doesn't really explain much.

"You guys have really known each other forever," Jimmy says in amazement.

Jimmy hasn't known much of anyone for longer than a year before he moved to Bullworth, and this new record is just because his mother's convinced the school cleaned up his act.

"Our moms were friends. In school. I guess outside of school too, but Bullworth, as shitty as it is, it isn't the real world. Just because something works in high school doesn't mean it's real," Gary mumbles the last bit, staring out the bus window. They're getting close to the fairground, which doesn't bode well for the night if the tone of the conversation is anything to go by.

"Shut up, Gary," Petey hisses, the acidity of his tone shocking Jimmy. Pete gets mad, all the time even, and gets upset even more often, but Jimmy's never heard a tone like that from him.

"What? You're in denial," Gary says, grabbing Petey's arm. But Pete rips himself out of the older boy's grip and shoves him against the window. Even Gary looks a little startled at the aggressive act, coming from Petey no less.

The younger boy crawls up so he's towering over Gary and holds him against the window where he'd have to deliberately defy Petey to move. And right now, Gary is a little horny and a lot freaked out, so he's not going anywhere.

"And you have abandonment issues a mile fucking wide, but we're not talking about that right now. Right now, we're about to get off the bus and go to the motherfucking carnival and have a great date. And when we get home? We're not going to have sex. No, we're going to sit down and have a clearly necessary heart-to-heart where we try to convince you, once again, that we fucking love you. We. Fucking. Love. You. And if you think you're getting any ass within the next 24 hours, you're out of your god damn mind. Do you understand me?" Petey hisses.

Gary nods slowly, mouth open from shock. Jimmy'd make fun of him, if he weren't so stunned himself.

"The bus stopped," Jimmy offers helpfully. Petey smiles and climbs over Jimmy into the aisle. Jimmy and Gary are both watching him warily, but Pete only returns the looks with impatience.

"Coming?" he asks, crossing his arms.

They stare blankly at him for a second, causing him to huff a sigh and make his way towards the front of the bus. Gary and Jimmy scramble after him, shoving each other in an attempt to not be the last one off the bus after that rare show of dominance from their boyfriend.

After pausing to allow one of the other boys to handle payment, Petey leads the boys into the carnival, satisfied that he has them at least a little subdued for the night. A reasonable distance behind him, Jimmy and Gary quietly shove each other, careful not to alert the boy in front of them.

"You pissed him off," Jimmy whispers angrily, jabbing Gary in the side.

"I am so turned on right now," Gary agrees, hip-checking him in return.

"Are you fighting?" Petey asks innocently, not even pausing or turning around to check. They share a look, running to catch up with him.

"Of course not Pete," Jimmy placates, wrapping an arm around the boy's waist.

"What kind of idiots do you take us for?" Gary adds.

Petey gives them disbelieving looks, but he gets nothing but twin looks of innocence in reply. He lets it go. If they're lying, at least they're lying together.