"Johnnycakes..." Ponyboy said.

"Yeah, Pony..." Johnny said boredly.

"I'm bored." Ponyboy said and shifted a little bit on the tree branch.

"I am too, Pony..." Johnny said, turning to look at Pony.

They were in one of the trees at the lot. The sun was starting to go down and it was getting nippy outside. The boys had gotten bored of sitting on the ground and decided to just climb the tree. It was as boring as sitting on the ground.

Ponyboy sighed and lit a cigarette. He handed Johnny the lighter.

Johnny took the lighter and lit his own cigarette.

They sat there on the tree branch for a few more minutes.

"Hippopotomonstrosesquipedali ophobia."

"What did you just say?" Ponyboy asked.

"It means fear of long words." Johnny said as he looked down at the ground below them.

"What smart ass came up with that?" Ponyboy asked.

"I don't know." Johnny laughed. "Its a stupid word."

"You ain't awoofin." Ponyboy said. "You wanna know another stupid word?"

"What?" Johnny asked as he took a drag from his cigarette.

"Decadent." Pony said. "I hear this everytime I see a commercial for a brownie or sundae or something. What does it even mean? Is it a decadent cake? Am I a decadent young man?"

Johnny laughed. "I guess that is kinda bothersome when you don't know what they're talkin' about."

"You got another one?" Ponyboy asked.

"Uh..." Johnny thought for a moment. "Monopoly."

"How's that stupid?" Ponyboy asked and watched the burning butt of his cigarette.

"Mono means one," Johnny said as he put out his cigarette using the bark on the branch. "And poly means many."

"What does monopoly mean?" Ponyboy asked.

"Don't know..." Johnny said.

Ponyboy put out his cigarette. "How 'bout a naysayer."

"What's that?" Johnny asked.

"Some one who always says no." Pony said. "Ya know, 'nay'."

"Sounds like somethin an old person would say." Johnny said. "Hell, I think my reading teacher says that."

"Ain't your ass goin' numb?" Pony asked and shifted some more on the tree branch.

"Not really." Johnny said. "What's another stupid word?"


"Huh?" Johnny looked at Pony.

"Love." Pony repeated. "It's a stupid word."

"Why?" Johnny asked. "That words means a lot-"

"It means nothin'." Pony said. "It's just a word."

Johnny looked away. "It aint just a word..." He said.

"Sorry, Johnny." Pony said. "Didn't mean to dampen your mood."

"Why is it a stupid word?" Johnny asked and looked at Pony again. "Why doesn't it mean anything?"

"Think about it, Johnny." Pony said. "People say it all the time and for no reason."

"They say it for a reason, Pony." Johnny said quietly. "They say it if they want some one to know they love them, don't they?"

"Sayin' 'I love you' is rhetorical." Pony said. "People don't have to mean it to say it."

"Some people mean it..." Johnny said.

"Johnny, no one's ever said it to you so shut your trap." Pony snapped. He immediatly regretted it when he saw Johnny wince out of the corner of his eye.

Johnny closed his eyes and turned away. "I didn't need to be reminded that no one loves me, Pony." Johnny said bitterly.

"Sorry, Johnnycakes." Pony said guiltily. "I didn't mean it like that."

Neither of them said anything for a few minutes.

Pony sighed and looked at Johnny. "See ya around, Johnny. I gotta get home." He said and jumped down from the tree. He landed on the ground with a small thud and started walking towards his house.

He heard another small thud behind him. "Pony, wait." Johnny said and ran up to him.

"What?" Pony asked as he turned around. Johnny stood in front of him.

"If...If I said 'I love you' to you, would that mean nothin?" He asked quietly.

Pony looked at him for a second, watching Johhnny's eyes for any sign of a joke or prank, but he found nothing. "I...I don't know, Johnny." He said finaly.

"What do you mean you don't know?" Johnny asked.

"I'm sorry, Johnny." Pony said. "I didn't mean to upset you. I gotta go." He said and turned around.


Johnny grasped Pony by the shoulders and turned him around.

Pony gasped when Johnny kissed him. Pony turned his head away from Johnny, breaking the kiss but Johnny still had him by the shoulders.

"Did that mean nothin, Pony?" Johnny asked quietly.

Pony didn't say anything. He closed his eyes and honestly thought he was dreaming. But when he opened his eyes, he was still in Johnny's arms.

"Pony, say somethin." Johnny said.

"Say what?" Pony asked and looked at Johnny again.

"Did that mean nothin?" Johnny asked again.

Pony shook his head. "I don't know..." He said.


"What?" Pony asked and shrugged out of Johnny's arms. "You don't just drop something like that on somebody!"

"I'm sorry, man." Johnny said, his face turning red.

"I gotta go, Johnny." Pony said. "Darry will get worried." He said and started walking toward his house.

"Okay." Johnny mumbled. He sighed shakily and sat down beneath the tree. He didn't feel like going over to his usual place in the lot. His stomach churned whe he thought about what Pony was probably thinking. He knew Pony wasn't gay. He didn't even like girls, let alone boys.

+++a half hour later+++

Pony sat on the couch after dinner. He and Darry had done the dishes and Soda was in their room 'doing laundry'.

"Somethin' bothering you, Pony?" Darry asked as he sat down with his newpaper.

"Nah, I'm fine." Pony said. "Thanks for dinner, Darry." He said and stood up from the couch and started to walk towards his and Soda's room.

"Yep." Darry said.

"Soda?" Pony asked and walked into their room and shut the door with a small click.

"Yeah, Pony?" Soda asked. He was sitting between two small piles of clothes. One of them, Pony assumed, was probably what Soda thought was 'folded'.

"I gotta ask you somethin." Pony asked and sat down on the ground beside Soda.

"Then ask away." Soda said and continued 'folding' him clothes.

"It's about Johnny...and you can't tell nobody this." Pony said.

"No one?" Soda asked.

"I know Johnny doesn't want nobody to know this." Pony said.

"Then why you tellin me?" Soda asked.

"I don't know what else to do."

"Does it involve you?" Soda asked.

"Oh yeah."

"What is it?"

"Johnny and I were talking cause we were bored..." Pony started saying. "And he told me that...that he loved me." Pony said the last part quietly, as if there were a ton of people around them listening.

"What do you mean?" Soda asked.

"Like how you love Sandy."

Soda nodded. "Okay." He said, thinking. "So he just now told you this?"


"What did you say to him? Did you give him an answer back?"

"No, I was just...like really surprised." Pony said. "I mean, it's Johnny. It's hard to talk to him about girly like things."

"Girly like things?" Soda laughed. "Where's you come up with that one?"

"Sensitive things." Pony restated.

"Okay. And your asking for advice?" Soda asked and pushed all the clothes under the bed.


"Alright, so to start off, figure out your feelings for him." Soda said. "And the think about it and make sure you're certain of what you're feeling, whether you like him or not." Soda said. He was good at giving advice without having to know Pony's personal thoughts, and Pony appreciated that. "And then figure out what you're going to tell him, again, whether you like him or not. Don't just leave him hangin."

"What if he starts cryin?" Pony asked. "He cries a lot."

"Okay Pony first of all, a man always has a good reason to cry." Soda said. "Secondly, tell him that he'll find someone who smells better than you. That's what I do."

When he says, 'someone who smells better' he means that they're just not meant to be together and all the girly like stuff.

"But I know you won't make him cry." Soda says. "Cause you like him too."

"And how would you know?" Pony asked defencively.

"Because I see the way you look at him, you don't know it but you like him." Soda said. "It's the same way he looks at you. I knew that he liked you before he even did."

"Wait, you knew?" Pony asked.

"Pft, yes." Soda laughed.

Pony shook his head. "Okay, thanks Soda." He said and stood up.

"No problem." Soda said and stuffed some socks under the old dingy rug.

Pony ran out to the living room and after convincing Darry to let him go back out to the lot, he ran down to the lot. It was now dark out, and it was really cold. When he came up to the tree where he and Johnny had been, he saw that Johnny was sleeping on the ground beside the trunk.

"Hey, Johnny." Pony said and kneeled down beside Johnny. He gently shook his shoulders. "Wake up, Johnnycake."

Johnny groaned. "I don't wanna."

"It's still early, c'mon." Pony said and tugged Johnny up.

"Pony, what do ya want?" Johnny asked and leaned against the tree.

"I wanted to talk to you, you know, about earlier." Pony said and sat beside Johnny.

"I said I was sorry." Johnny said and looked at Pony.

"I know you did. I'm sorry too." Pony said. "I was really surprised. I just didn't expect that from you."

"What do you mean?" Johnny asked.

"I thought that if you loved any of us at all, it's be Dally. Not me." Pony said.

"Dally?" Johnny laughed quietly. "I love him, I love all of ya guys, honestly. You're my family." Johnny said. "I just always really liked you."

Pony nodded and put his arm around Johnny when he saw that he was shivering. "You okay?"

"Yeah." Johnny said. "Can I ask you somethin?" Johnny asked.


"You just have to say yes or no."


"Do you love me back?" Johnny asked.

Pony closed his eyes and contemplated once again his feelings for Johnny. Finaly, he decided for sure. "...Yes." He said quietly.

"What?" Johnny asked.

"Yes, I love you." Pony said a little louder.

"R-Really?" Johnny asked. "You're not just saying that?"

Pony grinned softly at Johnny and pressed their lips together carefully.

Johnny leaned into the kiss and out his hands on Pony's waist.

Pony put his arms around Johnny's shoulders hesitantly. They pulled away after a few more seconds.

"That was the first time I've ever willingly kissed someone." Pony laughed.

Johnny smiled, one of his rare, real smiles. He kissed Pony again and hugged him closer. He gently licked Pony's lips and dipped his tongue in between them.

Pony didn't actually know what he was suppose to do, but he had enough common sense to open his mouth. He fidgeted slightly when Johnny's tongue went inside his mouth.

Johnnny licked the inside of Pony's mouth for a few moments until Pony started to suck on his tongue. He grabbed Pony's knee and pulled it over his waist so that Pony was straddling his lap.

"Hey!" Pony said and pulled away. "I'm bigger!"

"I'm older."

"Who cares, I'm bigger." Pony said stubbornly.

"Fine, okay." Johnny said and pushed Pony off off him. He sat on his lap instead and put his legs around Pony's waist. "Better?"

"Yeah." Pony said sheepishly, grinning. He kissed Johnny again and wrapped his arms around Johnny's chest. Johnny hugged Pony around the shoulders and gently pushed their chests together.

Pony pushed Johnny onto the ground and got on top of him. Johnny wrapped his legs against tightly around Pony.

"You ain't shy or nothing?" Pony asked as Johnny wrapped his arms around his neck.

"Nah, it's just you." Johnny said.

"Okay." Pony started to kiss Johnny's neck. Johnny moaned quietly and arched his back gently.

"I love you, Pony." Johnny said.

"I love you too, Johnny."

review and I'll write more 3