Appreciating Bright's Inner Self
by Zeelee

Bright didn't hear the news from Ephram, and at first he was a little insulted--best friends were supposed to tell each other this shit. But then, Ephram had always been weird and more than a little sneaky, and Bright didn't really blame him.

So Ephram had knocked up Madison. What the fuck? Ephram was supposed to be the smart one, didn't he know to use protection?

Whatever, it didn't matter now. Bright's life suddenly sucked, and Ephram's life suddenly sucked, and Bright knew he was duty-bound as a best friend to get Ephram as shit-faced as possible ASAP.

He enacted his plan a few nights after Ephram came back from New York. He dragged a protesting Ephram away from the surely precious brooding he was doing in his room, and they ended up in the middle of the park at midnight, huddled up in parkas, listening to cheesy, sorrowful pop music on the car radio and nursing beer bottles.

"It's not like I want to be a perfect husband or anything--I mean, fuck man, I'm nineteen, what's with all this settle down crap? Girls are freakin' weird. But you know, it would be nice if I could meet a chick who saw more than my chiseled good looks, you know?" Bright pouted and took a gulp from his sixth beer.

Ephram snorted. He was still hunched up, looking out the car window, nursing what was probably his seventh. "Poor you. Seriously, man, I don't know how you get by without bursting into tears."

Bright scowled. "If I was a chick, this would totally be a valid complaint. You're sexist, Ephram."

Ephram rolled his eyes, and Bright knew it meant'I'm not sexist, you're just an idiot,'but for once Ephram didn't actually say the insult that he was thinking. Bright considered this, taking another gulp of beer.

"Gillian called me mindless, you know."

Ephram shot him a blank look. "You are mindless."

Bright kicked him lightly. "Dude, I'm serious here. And I'm getting a little tired of everyone constantly calling me stupid and worthless. It would be nice if my best friend didn't join in." That came out a little sharper than he expected, but whatever.

Ephram looked surprised. The first real emotion Bright had seen on his face since he'd picked him up. "Sorry, man. I was just joking. Since when are you all Mr. Sensitivity?"

"Whatever. I mean, it's like--I know I'm not the most colorful crayon in the box, but. But." Bright could feel the alcohol working, a faint buzzing in his skull, and he took another gulp, looking over at Ephram.

"Come on, dude. I did not want this to be my own semi-private pity party. It's your turn to spill your guts."

Ephram laughed softly, and Bright thought he didn't sound amused at all. "Wallowing in self-pity isn't exactly my favorite activity." He tipped his head back, emptying the rest of his beer.

"It's okay to wallow when you're drunk, man. It's, like, a rule."

"Okay, fine. You want wallowing? I can wallow with the best of them, Bright. My girlfriend dumped me, I think I have a freaking child running around New York somewhere, I'm not speaking to my father and, oh yeah, any hopes I had of ever having a future have been dashed."

Bright... didn't really know what to say to that. His own concerns really did seem shallow and dumb, comparatively. "Well, hey, look on the bright side. Now you don't have to go to New York and leave us all."

Ephram gave him a withering look. "Why the hell would I want to stay here?"

Bright knew he was supposed to be a good friend and pat Ephram on the back and let him bitch or whatever, but he felt himself start to get angry. Maybe it was the beer. "Gee, E, I dunno. Not like you'd be leaving your best friend or anything," he said sarcastically.

Ephram just rolled his eyes and went back to staring out the window. Bright felt distinctly blown off.

"Dude, why do you always have to do that?"

Ephram sighed the sigh of the long-suffering. "Do what, Bright?"

"Always blow me off. Act like I'm too dumb to understand english. Whatever."

"Bright, come on-"

"You always act like I'm too dumb, too blonde or whatever to understand your vast artistic New Yorkian angst." Bright was on a roll now. "You treat me like a frickin' sidekick, man. You never take me seriously! You," he said, pointing dramatically at Ephram for effect, "don't appreciate my inner self."

Ephram blinks at him. "Bright, that's-" He blinks again, and looks at him--actually looks at him. A serious, not-sarcastic look, and Bright holds his breath for what Ephram will say next.. "Man, you are so gay."

Bright barely manages to restrain the urge to throttle Ephram. "Dammit, Ephram, I'm serious-"

"No really, so am I. Think about it-"

"Hang on a second, I'm a basketball player, you're a piano guy and you're saying that I'm gay?"

"That's stereotyping, Bright. It's very evil and you should never do it again."

"You are so wasted, Ephram."

"I'm getting there." Ephram scoots closer, waving the bottle for emphasis and gaining momentum. "Hear me out, man. So you're having all this--existential angst or whatever, right? About you and girls?"

"Exit what?"

"Stop interrupting me. Like I was saying, you're feeling all bad all the flimsy relationships you keep having with girls. How you've never stayed with anyone for long, how you've never really been in love, how you've never been serious, blah blah blah-"

"I'm really touched by your sympathy dude."

"Shut up. Anyway, have you ever actually thought about that? Here you are, this gorgeous guy who can probably get any girl to fall in love with him, who has so--so much to give in any relationship, who's kind and funny and has, like, the biggest heart ever-"

Bright blinked. Ephram pretty much never complimented him. "Dude, if you think my heart's big..."

"And yet you can't make anything with a girl last longer than a few weeks," Ephram continued stubbornly, ignoring Bright's potty humor. "Now, if you think about the real, serious, long-lasting relationships you've had, they've all been with guys. Like with Colin, like with..."

Ephram's voice faltered, and his mouth snapped shut. He was really close now, having leaned forward so as to better lecture Bright, and he looked... confused.

Bright hated when Ephram looked confused. It usually meant that something really, really terrifying was happening.

Ephram swallowed, and Bright could see his adam's apple bobbing up and down. He could also see Ephram biting his lip just slightly, and okay so maybe he was a little gay but he was also drunk so it didn't count.

That wasn't, technically, one of Bright's rules, but he could so make it one.

"So, uh." Bright coughed and ran a hand nervously through his hair. "I'll humor you by going along with your little theory for now. Just say I was gay--I'd have to, like, test it right? I mean." Bright shifts a little so that he's sitting up, leaning closer to Ephram. "It's the scientific process or something like that."

"You'd have to... experiment," Ephram says vaguely, like he's not paying attention. And he doesn't look like he's paying attention: his face is dazed and his mouth is hanging open a little bit, and he's staring at Bright's eyes.

"So, yeah. In... theory, I'd have to experiment. And seeing as you're my best friend and all, you'd be duty bound to help me out. Because I so totally suck at science, man."

Bright watches as Ephram stops looking at Bright's eyes and starts looking at Bright's mouth. "Yeah. In theory, I'd help you out."

Bright honestly isn't that drunk--Ephram's much more of a lightweight than he is--but. He can always use that as an excuse, he thinks, and leans forward to press his lips against Ephram's.

It's really not much different from kissing a girl; but then, Ephram's always been kind of girly. The kiss gets deeper, and since the car is small Bright pulls Ephram onto his lap--and whoa. It's definitely not like kissing a girl anymore. Because Ephram has these muscled legs and skinny, hot little hips and his half-hard cock is pressing against Bright's thigh. Bright makes a mental note to get Ephram drunk more often.

Ephram is making these soft, deep little moaning noises into Bright's mouth, and he keeps moving in Bright's lap, rocking back and forth, making Bright harder every time he does. His hands are just clutching at Bright's collar, but that's okay because his hips are doing more than enough. He lets Bright get his hands up underneath his coat and his (two shirts, why does he always wear two damn shirts?), and when Bright slips a hand down the back of Ephram's pants he still doesn't make any noises of protest, just pants a little against Bright's cheek and grinds harder in Bright's lap.

Ephram's ass fits really nicely in Bright's hands. Amy used to go on about how hot Ephram's 'back' looked like in the jeans he always wore, and Bright had always brushed her off, but now he finds that he really has to agree: Ephram's ass is truly a thing of beauty, all muscley and dimpled in good places, and Bright thinks he wants to spend a lot of time feeling Ephram up, just like this.

And doing more, because helloooo, Ephram's ass is so not the only fine thing on his body. Bright is a pretty big fan of the soft hair on the inside of his thighs, of his hips and the teasing trail of hair leading down to his dick. Ephram's already leaking when Bright finally touches him, and he bites at Bright's earlobe when he squeezes him.

Bright always thought it was so hot when chicks did the ear-biting thing.

Except that it's even hotter when Ephram does it, licking behind his ear and down his jaw, and twisting and rocking his hips into Bright's hand--and fuck, he's like, humping Bright's hand, and Bright totally shouldn't find that hot but he does.

Ephram starts sucking at his neck, at the same rhythm that Bright is jerking him off, and Bright doesn't even think of warning him not to leave hickeys. Who the hell cares about hickeys? Not Bright, that's for sure, not when Ephram's dick is slick in his hand, not when he finds out that Ephram bites the nearest surface hard when he comes. In this case, the nearest surface happens to be Bright's skin, but Bright's not complaining.

His hand is all sticky, and he realizes that he got a little on his pants, too. He should find it gross because this is some other dude's jizm, not his (and it's still gross when it's his), but.

Ephram is breathing hard, shaking a little. If Bright had any free hands, he'd cross his fingers in hope that Ephram wasn't about to freak out or something. Because Ephram had that look on his face, that look he got right when he was about to blow up or crumple or freak out or something.

But Ephram doesn't freak out. Instead he kisses Bright hard, and scoots back in the truck until he's--oh fuck. At eye level with Bright's crotch.

Bright has been in this situation with drunk girls before, and knows how much it can suck for the girl the next morning. He sure as hell doesn't want Ephram to stop now, but he should say something.

"Ephram. Ephram, man, you're drunk, you don't have to-"

"Shut up, Bright." And then Ephram was giving him that quirky little half-smile, and he looked totally sure about what he was doing when he undid Bright's fly and pushed down his pants. He did that quick little thing with his eyebrows and the quirky half-smile got wider, and then Bright couldn't see his mouth anymore because his mouth was around Bright's cock and Bright was making some really embarrassing noises.

Ephram was good at this. Either he'd done it before or he was a natch, because he was sucking Bright down smoothly and quickly, over and over again, and his tongue was doing these things, and then he was going all the way down. His nose was pressed up against Bright's stomach, and Bright knew it was bad blowjob etiquette but he couldn't help but grab Ephram's hair and buck up, again and again until he felt every muscle in his body tense up, the orgasm washing over him as he saw stars behind his eyelids.

Ephram gives him kind of a dirty look when they're done, and hurriedly spits out the window. "Ever heard of warning a guy?"

"S-sorry, man." Bright's brain cells cannot possibly devote time to feel guilty about accidentally coming in Ephram's mouth. Bright's brain cells are too busy regrouping and processing the information that fucking Ephram just gave him a fucking blow job.

Not that Bright's complaining. It's just.

"Dude, you've hooked up with my sister."

Ephram snorted. "Do you always discuss your sister after sex?"

"I dunno, man. I've never had gay sex before. Maybe the sister-talk will become, like, a tradition."

Ephram yawned and leaned back in his seat, propping his feet up. "You're weird, Bright."

"Yeah, well, you're a dork, E." But Ephram's eyes were already closed, his lips slightly parted; fast asleep. Bright wondered if he could ask Amy if Ephram always fell asleep right after sex, or if that was one of those things you just didn't discuss with your little sister. Bright figured it was probably the latter.

Bright realized that he didn't, actually, have anyone he could talk to about this. Usually he spilled his guts about something like this to Ephram, but, well. He couldn't really do that in this case. He could talk to Hannah, but it was just mean to tell a girl you knew was into you about you hooking up with someone else (although, on the other hand, maybe telling her 'Surprise! I'm gay, or at least gay for Ephram!' would finally end her little crush).

'I'm gay.' Was he gay? Did this make him gay? Bright mulled it over as Ephram snored next to him (guy had no alcohol tolerance).

He'd never really felt attracted to a guy before. Yeah, so maybe he'd stolen looks at other guy's bodies in the locker room, but didn't everyone do that? They were all naked, after all, and it was natural to compare the goods.

He thought about Jake King, the senior football star he'd hero-worshipped freshman year. He probably wouldn't have said no if Jake wanted to do him, but then, he wouldn't have said no if Jake had asked him to jump off a cliff.

He thought about Colin. He had never really... felt like that around Colin, but maybe he had just repressed it really well. He glanced at Ephram. Ephram had probably felt like that about Colin, and from the way Colin used to act around Ephram, he probably felt like that, too.

The beer was starting to make Bright feel a little dizzy, even though he was sitting down. Fuck this shit, he thought. Overanalyzing was for worry-warts like his sister or geeks like Ephram. He just went with the flow of things, and if the flow of things wanted him to suck Ephram's cock, he was okay with that.

He might need some practice being gay, though. Or at least some solid research on the topic, so he didn't look like an inexperienced ass when Ephram pulled his 'Oh, I'm from New York and am therefore the expert on all things homosexual' schtick. Heck, Bright could even turn this into his own personal project. If he was gonna be gay, he should be gay the whole way, right?

Bright grinned to himself at the rhyme. Ephram was still asleep next to him, and as soon as he was sober enough, Bright would drive him home. Maybe zip up Ephram's pants first, though, because he so didn't want to explain that to Dr. Brown.


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