…There's gotta be someone else out there that supports this pairing.
Keegan-Michael Key was flipping through the scripts for the next episode of Key & Peele. He sat at a desk behind the studio, examining the pages under a desk light. It was really late at night and there was no one else around.
Or so he thought.
"Sigh…" he leaned back in the chair and looked toward the ceiling. "It's really late… What time is it?"
A face suddenly obscured his view of the ceiling above him. "Almost midnight."
"Waahh!" Keegan yelped, throwing his hands up and the papers flying everywhere. He sat upright and spun around, noticing his best friend Jordan Peele reaching out to grab as many of the scattered papers as he could. When the papers he missed hit the floor, he stood there with his arms out and stared at Keegan.
"I missed a couple," he said. Keegan made a face.
"What the hell, Jordan?" Keegan looked at Jordan, who still hadn't put his arms down. "I thought you left already!"
"No, I've been here the whole time," Jordan finally moved, gathering the papers in his hands and setting them in a pile on Keegan's desk. "I've been in the bathroom for awhile because, I gotta tell you," Jordan patted his stomach and made a sour face, "that Chinese food didn't sit very well in my tummy…"
Keegan frowned. "I…apologize…but I don't think I needed to know that."
"Well it's too late now!" Jordan chuckled and knelt down to pick up the rest of the papers. "I didn't think I would scare you so much."
"I wasn't expecting anyone else to be here."
"Good point," Jordan stopped to point at him. Keegan watched him pick up the remaining papers off the floor. The shorter man stood up and placed them on the desk on top of the rest of the script.
"So, why are you still here?" Keegan asked.
"I should be asking you that," Jordan leaned against the wall behind him.
"I asked first."
Jordan raised an eyebrow. Keegan did ask first. "Another good point." He crossed his arms. "Because you're still here."
Keegan blinked. "Huh?"
"Now you answer."
Keegan glanced at the script and placed his hands over them. "I was looking over these and checking over which ones I wanted to use for next week's episode and which ones I think we should use later."
"But it's midnight, and if you thought I wasn't here, why wouldn't you want to consult me on it?" Jordan asked. Keegan blinked again, then turned away from his gaze.
"W-well," Keegan scratched his chin, stuttering nervously. "I just wanted to, y'know, look them over myself first…"
"But you never do that."
"Well, I thought maybe I'd start."
"That doesn't make any sense."
"Why do you keep questioning me?"
"That wasn't a question."
"JORDAN!" Keegan jumped out of his chair and stared wide-eyed at his shorter friend. Jordan didn't flinch.
"Keegan, is something going on?" Jordan said, gazing intently at Keegan. "I'm your best friend. You know you can talk to me about anything."
Keegan averted his gaze again. "I-it's nothing…"
"Okay!" Keegan reached for the script on the table and held it out to Jordan. "There's something in this script that bothers me!"
Jordan opened his mouth slightly in shock. "W-what? Keegan, you're normally cool about everything we choose to do! What in the script could possibly deter you from wanting to do something?" Jordan grabbed the papers and began glancing through it. "Are you scared of Luther's high-flying kicks threatening to rip your balls apart again?"
"No, no, not that," Keegan glanced through the papers until he found the page he was looking for. "Th-this one!" He handed it to Jordan and turned his back to him.
Jordan skimmed over the words and paused when he read what he thought Keegan was troubled over. "Oh, Keegan…"
Keegan didn't respond.
"You mean the KKK skit with black people trying to join in? Keegan, I figured you'd be okay with that. We discussed this last week."
"No, no!" Keegan turned back around and pointed to the bottom of the page. "That one!"
Jordan read it and his eyes widened. "The skit where we parody I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry?"
Keegan nodded. "Yes. That one."
Jordan raised an eyebrow in confusion. "Why? We've never had a problem doing gay skits before."
"B-but, we have to…um, y'know…" he rubbed the top of his bald head.
Jordan didn't understand. "What?" he glanced over the script again and tried to comprehend what the problem was. "Um, we have to kiss at the end of it…"
Keegan made a strange noise, like a short internal scream or something, and Jordan looked at his back. "Keegan?"
Keegan didn't respond again.
"Keegan," Jordan grabbed his shoulder and spun him around to face him. "Look at me."
"We've had a kissing scene before. What's the problem now?" Jordan asked.
Keegan tried to avert his gaze again, but Jordan used his hand to squeeze the bottom of Keegan's face and prevent him from turning away. "Th-that scene was just a quick peck! This time, we have to, like…make out!"
Jordan stared at him for a moment before sighing and releasing his grip on his friend's face. "Okay. So what do you want to do about it?"
"I-I don't know!" Keegan said. "Doesn't it bother you at all?"
Jordan shrugged. "I-I don't know… We've done a lot of crazy shit, so I guess I'm not really troubled by it. Why does it bother you so much? Because we're guys?"
Keegan huffed. "Well…I-I don't know… I just, I…" he glanced at his best friend, who was eyeing him curiously. They were best friends, but he never imagined having to immerse himself into a full make out session with him!
But they were just actors. So it's not like the feelings were mutual or anything. Besides, if he had to kiss any man, wouldn't he prefer it to be his best friend over someone he hardly even knew?
…His best friend? Jordan Peele was his best friend.
Just his best friend.
After a moment of awkward silence, Jordan adjusted his glasses and spoke. "If you really don't want to do it, we can just throw it out…"
"N-no!" Keegan said much too loudly, and Jordan jumped. "W-we can keep it!"
Jordan blinked, confused by his friend's behavior. "Um, all right."
Jordan and Keegan stared at each other for an indeterminate amount of time. Keegan wanted to say something, but he wasn't sure what. His chest felt tight when he thought about Jordan, and he never could understand why. He could make him laugh more than anyone else and he enjoyed his company. Key & Peele was probably one of the greatest things Keegan had ever been a part of, and he was glad he had Jordan to share that with.
As Jordan had mentioned, they had done a lot of gay skits and have even kissed before. But even then, Keegan had always felt uneasy about something.
But the next thing Jordan said was about to test all of that.
"D-do you…do you want to practice?"
Keegan felt his heart skip a beat as what Jordan said slowly sunk in. Practice? Practice…what?
"I was just asking!" Jordan immediately retorted. Now he was the one fidgeting nervously and turning away.
"J-Jordan, I know how to kiss!"
"I'm not saying you don't!"
"Then what are you—?"
"I'm just asking so that when we actually have to film the scene, you'll be comfortable with, y'know…kissing me…"
Keegan blushed. Was Jordan really asking him this? How should he respond?
Well, they were just friends…so it should be okay. Right? It would make for good TV.
And they were really good friends…
"F-fine!" Keegan finally agreed. "Fine. Let's practice. It's better to do this now than to have to struggle to get through the scene when we're filming…"
"I-I agree," Jordan said, and they continued to stare at each other. Neither knew what to do.
"…W-what are we doing?" Keegan asked.
"I-I don't know!" Jordan shrugged and looked around. "What do we do?"
"It's like we've never kissed anyone before!"
"Well, I'm pretty sure we both have!"
"Well then there shouldn't be a problem!"
"No, there shouldn't!"
Silence. No one moved.
"WHAT ARE WE DOING?" They both grabbed the sides of their heads in frustration.
"Okay, okay," Jordan took a deep breath. "L-let's do this…" he reached his hands out and slightly touched Keegan's face. Keegan flinched at the touch.
"O-okay, this is a start…" Keegan said, slowly mimicking Jordan's gesture and touching Jordan's face with his hands.
"Do we both need to be touching each other's faces?" Jordan questioned.
"Well, maybe it'd be easier if it was just one of us doing it."
"Well, who should it be?"
"…You're the taller one." Jordan dropped his hands and Keegan puffed up his cheeks.
Jordan smirked. "Sure."
Keegan inhaled then exhaled slowly. "O-okay…" he lowered his head, trying to get to Jordan's level. Jordan closed his eyes, and Keegan began to do the same, making sure that he didn't miss his mark.
Sure enough, Keegan's lips touched Jordan's and they both twitched in surprise. Keegan kept his lips connected to Jordan's and wasn't too sure what to do next. He then broke the connection and huffed like he had a hard time breathing.
"K-Keegan, I don't think that was long enough…" Jordan said, his eyes still closed.
"S-sorry," Keegan leaned back down and kissed him again, this time slipping his tongue into Jordan's mouth. Jordan returned the favor by wrapping his own tongue around Keegan's. They continued to make out for a few minutes, completely caught up in the moment when Keegan blinked and pulled back prematurely.
The two friends breathed heavily and gazed at one another in a mix of confusion and…lust?
"U-um…" Jordan finally spoke.
"I-I'm sorry, Jordan…" Keegan looked down, not able to face Jordan directly. His face was burning and his heart was pounding against his ribs. Had he ever felt this way before? He couldn't even recall if his first kiss was anything like this.
"Y-you're fine…" Jordan adjusted his glasses. "Just fine…"
Keegan nervously shuffled his feet. "I-it's getting late. Why don't we head out now? We can go over the rest of the script tomorrow…"
"Sounds like a plan," Jordan said with a bright smile. Keegan grinned back. He wasn't sure if it was a good idea to act like it never happened, but maybe Jordan was just trying to lighten the mood. "Let's get the hell outta here."
Keegan turned off the desk lamp, leaving them to maneuver in the dark to find the door. The light from the hallway outside was still on, so they spotted the light from under the door. They both reached out for the doorknob, only for their hands to touch.
"Sorry!" They both apologized, but neither removed their hand. Instead, their fingers somehow managed to intertwine with one another.
Jordan used his other hand to open the door, letting the light shine on their faces. They were both grinning at one another.
"We're best friends," Jordan chuckled. "It's not gay."
"Okay, Jordan," Keegan rolled his eyes. "Continue to reassure yourself of that."
They walked out together still hand-in-hand as they both began to internally question the same thing:
Are we really just best friends?