It needs to be said that sometimes my mom forgets important details when she talks. Like the time she told us she was considering leather (couches, it turns out), or when I was little and she said, "Here's a napkin to put your balls in" (the Atomic Fireballs that I was eating, she meant).
Then I wondered if that was what this was, like a Brokeback Mountain thing. We'd sleep in the same bed for a year, and finally we'd do it, but we'd never talk about it, ever, and then Ben would get married and I'd be killed in Texas. Probably not, but you can never be too careful with these things.
This is where we come, " he said. Albie and I look at each other. 'We?' 'Me and, you know.' Albie's eyes got wide. 'I really don't think I want to know about this.' I surprised myself. 'I do, ' I said. I guess I was tired of having to withhold the truth from Toby. Other than Ben, he and Albie we're easily my best friends at Natick. Toby looked a little surprised, like he'd just assumed we wouldn't want to hear the details. 'You do?' 'Yeah.' He looked around to make sure we were alone. We definitely were. No one came back here to my knowledge. Also it was cold. Like twenty degrees. Only three idiots would be in the woods in the winter, it seemed to me. 'Robinson' he said. 'Gorilla Butt, ' I said, nodding. 'I know.' 'You know?' 'Yup.' Toby crossed his arms an then deflated into a fake pout. 'You're stealing my scene, bitch. Scene stealer.' 'Sorry, ' I said. 'So you and Gorilla Butt. Wow.' He flipped me off. 'He hates that, ' Toby said. 'But, yeah. It's hairy.' 'Oh, look, almost anything else in the universe, ' Albie said, heading back to campus and leaving us in the clearing. 'He's such a prude, ' Toby said rolling his eyes.
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The hole in my heart, I can't even begin to describe. It's hard when you open your heart and let someone in and then suddenly they're not in it anymore. It doesn't matter whose fault it is; that empty spot stings so bad that you want to find any kind of relief, or wrap yourself up so tight you can't feel it anymore. I knew it might be there a little while. Or maybe even a long while. For both of us.