ROOMING WITH MY BEST FRIEND: AFTER GRADUATION 29


Posted:  December 17, 2014     PDF

It was just before seven in the morning when I got up and out of bed.  The day was here for us to move all of our belongings into our new house.  Inside, it was so exciting but there was so much to do.  I rolled out of bed to let Corey sleep a few more minutes. 

Heading down the short hall, I saw Kris sitting alone with a glass of water in front of him.  “Bro, you took the coffee pot,” he said showing off his taut naked body.

“Again, we can live,” I said and sat next to him and was nude as well.

Kris grabbed my leg, “Another big day for you and Corey.  I know you’re excited.”

“I am but more excited about having everything there and really living there.”

“I bet.  Matt, I’m really jealous… well envious of you and Corey.  You’re able to do shit that I can only dream about now,” Kris said.

“Your day is coming right around the corner.  Corey and I had a house on our list and planned for it,” I stated.  “Honestly though this is much sooner than I thought possible.”

“I know what is next on your list… a kid,” Kris said.

“That could be our biggest hurdle ever.  We need more help with that than anything,” I said.  “I envy you in that respect.”

“Bro, you know there’s a way to get that,” Kris said with a smile.

“One I have no desire to explore either.  To me that’s the only downfall I see to being gay,” I said.  “When you and Melissa have a child, I’ll be the one so jealous and envious.”

“Don’t worry.  I have a feeling that you and Corey will be a big part of that occasion,” Kris said.

“Kris, thanks for coming and being here with us on another big day in my life.  There is common theme going here where you are always around on my biggest day and I love it…”

“Hell bro, I love it too.  There was no doubt in the world that Colt and I weren’t going to be here,” Kris said.

“I’ll be glad when both of you are around again…”

“That day is coming or else Melissa will go crazy,” Kris said.  “Hey we better get going.  There’s lots of shit that has to be moved.”

“There is,” I said.  I stood and kissed Kris’s cheek before we went to wake up Corey and Colt. 

Once they were up and we were all dressed, we stood in the living room.  “I’d suggest we start with the big stuff first,” Kris said.

“Then we’ll get the boxes after we get that,” Colt said.  “Matt, you need to strip the beds while we start.”

“No problem,” I said and headed back to do so.  It took just a minute and came out to see their strength on display.  Corey and Kris manhandled our couch and had it going out the front door.  Colt had one of our chairs behind them.  With the moving van close, they were able to start loading things with Kris and Colt discussing the best fit. 

With the couch moved, I was ashamed to see all the stuff that was hiding underneath.  I grabbed a trash can and began throwing away various bits of paper and crumbs.

“Beds are next,” Corey said.   Our bed had to be broken down so it could fit through the doors.  There again was crap under our bed and a few boxes that I had forgotten about. 

Thanks to strong friends with Shawn and Scott coming over to help as well, all our furniture was out with my computer and other items that could be broken in my vehicle.  We began loading up all the boxes into the moving van with me seeing how little stuff that we had.  The entire process didn’t take near as long as I had imagined it would.

They started heading out.  I put Scott in charge of things at the house until I arrived.  I stood and watched Corey pull away in the van with Colt.  Kris drove his vehicle with Scott riding with Shawn.  I walked back inside and called Mom.  She was close and surprised to hear that they were finished. 

I began walking around and checking every closet and every crook in the apartment.  This place would hold a place in my heart.  Corey and I knew from the beginning that it was just temporary.  I walked over and found the spot where Corey proposed to me.  It made this place special.  I continued to walk around and remember things but nothing really outstanding like there was in college.  I knew that our house would have many special days in the years to come.

Mom and Vince showed up with everything needed to get the apartment clean. 

“Matt, they really did that fast,” Mom said.

“In case you haven’t noticed, Matt has some pretty strong friends including Corey.  I’ll know who to call if we ever decide to move,” Vince said.

“Don’t hesitate,” I said.  “Man, I can’t thank you enough.  You don’t know how much this helps us out.”

“Matt, you know I’m more than happy to help you,” Mom said.

“It’s no problem at all,” Vince said.  “Now you better get over there and get everything in place.”

“Maybe I can help y’all get started,” I said and did feel guilty.

“We’ve got this.  They’ll need you to show them where things go,” Mom said.

“Alright but when you finish, please come by,” I said.

“We will.  Linda was telling me how great everything looked.  I really wanna see what Corey did to the yard,” Vince said.

I hugged them both and handed them the key just in case they need it.  I called Corey to tell him that I was headed over.  He asked that I pick up lunch on the way since no one had eaten. 

On the way, there was a barbecue place that was open.  I went in and got plenty for us to eat.  I continued and drove up with two kids playing basketball in the driveway across the street and down one house.  I got out and saw a nice SUV driving slowly down the street.  I was polite and waved to the SUV and to the kids across the street.  I got out our lunch and noticed the SUV was backing up. 

The dark window rolled down, “You gave me the wrong address.”

“Oh my God Ted, what are doing here?” I asked.

“Kris told me that you were moving in today.  Since we played Thursday, I thought I’d come by and see if I could help,” Ted said and stepped out in his team sweatshirt and sweatpants.

“It’s just great to see ya, Ted,” I said and noticed one of the boys had come across the street.

“Ask him,” the other one yelled.

Ted turned around and saw the boy who was wearing a team long sleeve tee.  “Ask me what?”

“I think you play for the…,” the boy said.

“Maybe, what position?” Ted asked with a big smile.

“Linebacker…you’re…ummm… Ted Wilcox that made all those tackles Thursday night,” the boy said with Kris and Corey coming out the door.

“I am,” Ted said.

“See I told ya,” the boy turned around and said to his friend.

“I’m here to help my buddies move in this nice house.  Hey Corey, Kris!” Ted said.

“Bro, you were the last guy I expected to see,” Kris said.

“I can think of a lot more but this is great,” Corey said with the two greeting Ted.

“Excuse me just a second.  Let me take care of these two guys first,” Ted said.

“Ted’s the best, bros,” Kris said to the kid who had stars in his eyes.

Ted reached in the back of his SUV and grabbed some tee shirts and a team poster.  Now the other kid had come across the street.  They had their phones out and had to take some selfies with Ted.  Ted handed them the shirts and posters.  They wanted them signed which Ted did.  He stood talking to them with the Dad coming out.  Ted walked over and greeted him.  Ted introduced us to Jay, the dad, Jay’s son Ryan and Ryan’s courageous friend Alden. 

We talked to Jay for a minute until I remembered that I had lunch in the car.  Ted said goodbye and helped me carrying in the food.  Everyone greeted Ted before Corey and I showed him around the house.

“This is really nice, guys,” Ted said after we finished showing him the house. 

“Thanks.  I’m glad you are here,” I said.

“I couldn’t stay away once I heard,” Ted said.

We walked back in and started eating the barbecue.  I stood looking at all the boxes that had been moved in. They had just started moving in the furniture when we stopped for lunch.

“Bro, I bet you don’t ever miss us,” Kris said to Ted while we were eating.

“I really do.  I miss this right here.  I miss just being a regular guy doing things with his buddies.  It’s nice and all playing in the NFL but you don’t have much of life once the season starts,” Ted stated.

“So they don’t give ya days off?” I asked.

“We usually are off on Tuesday except for this week when we played on Thursday.  Those days I don’t wanna do one thing and take it easy,” Ted said.

“How often do people recognize you when you’re out?” Shawn asked.

“More now that I’m playing.  Last year, I could go about anywhere without anyone knowing who I was,” Ted replied.  “I don’t mind like those two boys out there and know they will remember it for a long time.  I fucking hate the people that are after you to see what they can get.  I went home Thanksgiving and was hounded to death there.  I know they are proud of me but they went to some extremes.”

“I hope we’re not ever like that,” Corey said.

“Bro, have we ever ask him for one thing?” Kris stated.

“I appreciate that too.  You find our really quick who your friends are in this world.  Enough about me, what have all y’all been up to?” Ted asked.

We told him the big news of Colt getting engaged or about to.  Shawn told him how starting after the first that he was going to the Fire Academy on weekends.  Scott told him about him and Brennan dating. 

We finished up and started to head out to bring in the furniture. 

“We’ve got more help now,” Kris said and patted Ted on the shoulder.

“I wish I could help with the heavy stuff but if I messed up my back…” Ted said.

“Kris, just forget then.  The last thing we want is to be next week’s news,” Colt said.  “I can just see the papers and internet.  Ted Wilcox out for the year because he got hurt helping a friend move.”

We laughed but we knew it was true.  Ted did pitch in with the lighter stuff.  With all the help we had, getting our furniture inside wasn’t a big deal.  I did realize how big our house was once a few things got moved in.  It would give us room to grow. 

Once everything was moved in, we took a break with Kris handing out the beers.  I saw the loveseat wasn’t a perfect match for the couch but did come in handy quickly plus we had extra barstools.  Ted left and went out to his car to bring in shirts for all of us and a few hats.   He reached in his pocket and handed me a gift card.  He said that he didn’t have time to go shopping and wanted to get us something we could use.  We thanked him and were appreciative of the gift.

I began pulling out pictures to place on our mantle.  They were great conversation pieces with all of us having something to say.   We were interrupted when Mom and Vince came to the door.  Mom couldn’t believe that we were sitting around but Vince told her that there was plenty of time to unpack.  Kris got Vince a beer to join while Mom took some water. I continued to unpack some pictures and was interrupted again.  It was Daniel and Cale coming over.  It was a great opportunity for me to introduce them to Colt, Shawn, Mom, Vince and Ted. 

“Bro, we’re gonna have kicking New Year’s Eve party here,” Kris stated.

“I’m sure you will,” Vince said.

“Tell VJ to come over and join us,” Kris volunteered.

“I’m sure he would but I imagine he’ll be out with his friends,” Vince said.

“You’ll have to count me out.  Hopefully I’ll be preparing for a game,” Ted spoke up.

“We hope.  We’ll miss ya,” Scott said. “Last year was so fun at your place.”

“We were at Ted’s place last year,” I said to Daniel and Cale.

“Bro, y’all are coming,” Kris said to them.

“I guess we will,” Daniel said.

After we sat around talking, Ted stood and said that he needed to head back for he had film study in the morning.  Since he was leaving, Mom and Vince said they would as well.  They said goodbye with me and Corey following them out the door.  We thanked Ted for the gift card and said that we’d expect to see him again soon.  He said that he would and told us that he had a great time as always.  Mom and Vince waited so I could tell them personally how much I appreciated what that they did.  Mom handed me the key back before she kissed us goodbye.

“Bro, Daniel is in total shock about how normal Ted is,” Kris said once we got back inside.

“He’s just a regular guy.  He didn’t seem to have the big head at all,” Daniel said.

“He never has,” Colt said.

“He’s the best,” Shawn added.

“Did he just show up to help?” Cale asked.

“He did,” Scott replied.  “He told us that he misses being a regular guy.”

“You could really tell how much he enjoyed coming here,” Corey said.

We talked about what Mom and Vince had done for us.  They agreed that was a big help.

Kris stood, “Alright, I’ve stood this shit long enough.  I’m ready to jump in that hot tub out there.”

“I don’t know if it’ll hold all of us,” Corey said.

“I guess we’re about to find out,” I said.

“We’ll see how good of friends we are,” Shawn laughed.  “Kris, one problem, we don’t have any swimsuits.”

Kris laughed, “Fuck no.  Matt and Corey said no swimsuits are allowed.  We’re going butt ass naked.”

“Is that okay, Shawn?” I asked.

“Y’all have seen my white ass before,” Shawn laughed.

“Daniel… Cale, y’all are getting to really see how we are,” Corey said.

“It’s fine.  I like it,” Cale said.

“Everyone is cool as fuck if you ask me,” Daniel stated.

“Bro, we are,” Kris laughed.  “Matt, grab some towels and we’ll grab plenty of brews to enjoy out there.”

“Our neighbors will be so thrilled with us,” Corey said.

“They better get used to it,” Scott said.

I headed back to grab some towels.  Walking in the hall, I noticed a small scratch in the freshly painted walls.  It didn’t seem like a big deal and the price of having your friends move us in.  I grabbed all the towels and turned around to see Corey standing there naked.

“Is everything cool?  I came to check,” he asked.

“It is but we’ve got so much to do,” I replied.

“We do.  There will be time.”

“I know but I’m feeling a little stressed and just plain exhausted right now,” I said.

“I’m too.  We’ll need the week to rest up.  Would have this any other way though?  We’re very lucky to have such great friends…”

“We are but I hope nothing goes wrong.  Oh I saw the scratch in the hall,” I said.

“I’m sorry.  Blame me for that,” Corey said. “They’ll be waiting on us.”

“I know,” I said and dropped my clothes.  I took a deep breath and exhaled loudly with Corey putting his arm around me.

We walked out with Kris actually telling everyone how we needed to be under control so our neighbors wouldn’t hate us.  Corey and I were last in the hot tub that was just big enough for all eight of us. 

“Now let me get this straight.  All of y’all met when you were freshman and have stayed friends ever since?” Daniel asked with a bottle in his hand.

“That’s right,” I answered. 

“I came in late my freshman year,” Shawn said.

“Bro, you did?” Kris asked.

“He and I had a class together, remember?” I asked.

“It just seems like he’s been with us the entire time,” Colt said.

“I think that is so damn awesome,” Cale stated.  “I can tell y’all are tight.”

“Very tight,” Corey said.

“Really tight,” Scott added.  “Hell, this will be the first time I haven’t lived within shouting distance of Matt and Corey.  I don’t know what I’m gonna do.”

“Scott, you know you’re always welcome,” Corey said.

I sat listening to them talk and drink.  My hope was that the warm water would melt away the stress and tension caused by moving.  It didn’t hurt that I was beginning to enjoy a cold one or two in the process.
 
We left after staying in for a while.  The cold chill was sent over my body stepping out and before grabbing a towel.

“Bros, the fun is over.  We’ve got a shit load boxes to unpack in there,” Kris stated.

“Thanks, Kris!” Corey said.

“Corey, we really need to return the moving van and the carpet cleaner as well,” I said with us walking towards the house.

“Colt, wanna go with me?” Corey asked.

“Sure, I’ll go,” Colt replied.

Corey and Colt dressed quickly and headed out with instructions to get a hammer and nails so we could start hanging things.  We dried off before tackling the many boxes around the house.  Thanks to my labeling, they were in the right room.  My job was to start on our bedroom and get all of our stuff back in the drawers like they were before.  My name began calling from various spots around the house with one or the other wanting to know where I wanted this and that. 

Eventually most of the boxes were emptied by the time Colt and Corey returned.  We took a break before I grabbed Cale and Scott for their assistance in hanging pictures.  Our bedroom was easy since I knew what pictures I wanted and where I wanted them.  I came out with Kris and Colt hanging our group picture from our wedding. 

“Sorry guys but I didn’t want that there,” I said with it hanging in our living room near the kitchen.

“Bro, this is perfect spot,” Kris said, gesturing.

“I actually wanted the picture Daniel and Cale gave us to go there.  It really expresses the meaning of this place to me,” I said.

“You can put that anywhere.  Everyone will see this awesome picture when they come in the room,” Kris stated.

I reached up to take it down and felt Kris’s hand pull my hand away.  “Kris, let me just check it out,” I said.

“Bro, you know you’ll like this one better,” Kris said. “Corey?”

Corey threw up his hands, “I’m staying away from this.”

I did manage to get down the picture and replaced it with the other one.  I stood back while the others had now gathered around.  “I like that one much better.”

“It looks like shit right there!” Kris said.

“I don’t think that it does for your information!” I yelled.  “I had plans for the group picture in the hall.”

“Yeah, their picture will look good there!” Kris said and moved to change the picture.

I turned to Scott and Cale, “What do y’all think?”

“It’s your house,” Cale replied.

“I agree.  Either one will look fine but I like Matt’s idea,” Scott replied.

“Fuck it then!  I see my help is no longer needed or wanted!” Kris yelled and showed his temper.  He stormed off and grabbed to the kitchen.

I removed the group picture and hung the one I wanted.  I carried the group picture to the hall and asked for Scott’s assistance in hanging it. 

“Hey Matt, I think we’re gonna run,” Daniel said.

I lowered my head.  “I’m sorry that you had to see that.  I feel really bad and feel like I’m running you off.”

“You’re not.  It is getting late and again we stayed longer than we intended to,” Cale said.

“Thanks,” I said.

I heard them saying goodbye to the others and then leaving.  It was pretty much settled that the rest of them would be staying the night. I came back and sat next to Corey and began looking around for Kris.

“Where did Kris go?” I asked.

“I think I heard that other bedroom door shut,” Colt replied.  “I was wondering if we’d ever see the fireworks again.  We didn’t see the full display but a few sparks.”

“Thank goodness,” Shawn said.  “Hey is any of that barbecue left?  I’m sorta hungry.”

“It’s in the fridge,” I said.  “I think I need to go solve this matter right now before it goes any longer.”

I headed back in the direction of the bedroom.  Going there, I could hear our neighbors and knew that they were having a great party.  I knocked and opened the door with Kris on the phone.  He quickly hung up.  “I see your friends left,” he said.

“Kris, this isn’t really about the picture… is it?”

“Fuck yeah, it is.  You’re now all high and mighty!”

“I am along with Corey in this house,” I said and sat down. “Why can’t I have my way in my house?”

“I just thought it would look great there.  You wanted to impress Cale and Daniel and put their picture in that spot,” Kris said.

“It’s not about the picture at all,” I said and looked at him. 

“It was… bro, trust me it was.”

“Look… I may have catered to them more than the others but I’m talking to the guy who I still consider my best friend… well… you know… the best one I’m not married to.”

“I can feel our bond slowly slipping away,” Kris said.

“I agree but… you’re about to be married and I’m already married.  It’s just natural that it would.  If I ever had a big problem, say between Corey and me, do you know who the first person that I’d call?  It wouldn’t be Cale or Daniel either,” I stated.

“I wonder.”

“Seriously?  You really think that?”

Kris looked at me and smiled, “You think that I was pissed earlier…”

“We did get to see what is left of the old Kris.”

“Sad but true.  I had to show my white ass,” Kris said and chuckled.

“Kris, Corey and I are trying to bridge the gap until you and Colt get here plus I think Daniel and Cale are looking for friends as well that they can hang out with. I don’t think that they had any true friends to do things with and be around. Tonight, imagine that was you around six guys who had been friends for six years and longer.  I tried to keep them involved and fill in a few gaps as well…”

“Bro that would be tough.  I’m sure there was times they didn’t have a clue what we were talking about,” Kris said.

“Kris, in all honesty, I did think their picture fits the area better.  You can have your opinion too.  And another thing, my ass is worn out and stressed like you wouldn’t believe.  All we have done for five days is do things in this house.  I’ll take some of the blame for fanning the flames a little bit.”

“I’ll take the rest for being hard headed and fucking blind,” Kris said.  “I thought maybe you were trying to impress the new guys and make them feel good.  I’ll admit that I did feel like I was now just a guy and not like I was.”

“Kris, you’ll never be just a guy to me.  Yes, things are changing but when the chips are down, we’ll have each other in the end,” I said.

“Damn right we will,” Kris said.  “Bro, I love you.”

“I love you too and will always love you,” I said.

We stood and embraced.  Kris mentioned about the party and how that I had nothing to worry about.  We headed out the door.

“Bros, I’m sorry that I showed my ass earlier.  Things are now all good.  Corey, you’ve got a really good one here,” Kris said with everyone eating.

“I think so too,” Corey said.

“Damn, I was really hoping that we’d see more of Kris’s temper.  Hell, I can’t remember the last time that we did,” Colt laughed.

Kris walked over and grabbed him by the head.  “Shut your fucking mouth or you’ll see it again.”

The barbecue was finished up with nothing but bones to show.  We headed to the living room and sat down with everyone still nude except for Shawn.  Corey put his arm around me while we were sitting on the loveseat.

“Feel like home yet?” Scott asked.

“Not yet.  All seriousness, Corey and I couldn’t have done it without you.  I’m not just talking about today.  Each one of you are so special to us and don’t you ever forget either,” I said.

“I will say y’all did make it so easy today.  We’re so thankful for good friends.  We really do have the best,” Corey said.  “Tomorrow if you’re willing, there are a few things out front I could use some help with.”

“Just name it, bro,” Kris said.

“I will,” Corey said.

We sat and did check out the TV with Kris wanting to test out our gas fireplace.  He got it started but after a few minutes the heat was overbearing.  My head leaned over and felt Corey’s chest.

“Wake up, bro. You and Corey need to go to bed,” Kris said shaking me.

“We’re fine. I just dosed off,” I said.

“If you call thirty minutes dosing off,” Colt laughed.

“We were getting tired of seeing Corey drool,” Shawn laughed.

“Okay,” Corey said.  “The house better be standing in the morning.”

“It will,” Scott said.

The next memory was crawling in our bed and feeling Corey’s lips on mine.

TO BE CONTINUED…

Again, I hope you enjoyed another chapter in my story.   There's still a few more to come before the end of the year.  

READ CHAPTER 30

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