The Devil's Quill

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Kaitlyn Wiehe

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A twin bed, in the middle of a room, with two boys. Remements of their night were scattered across the comforter: flashlights, books on space and sports and videogames, crumpled wrappers. There’s a playboy shoved under the bed.

One in blue flannel pajamas, the other in basketball shorts and a star wars t-shirt. Soft and hard, light and dark, the same but different. The boy in the flannel pajamas stirred and woke first. He rubbed his eyes, adjusting to the light filtering through the shades. Turning over, he gazed at his friend. He thought he looked peaceful, that normally overly expressive face so full of excitement and smiles was nowhere to be seen. Instead, just a pout, and the quiet whistle of air going out of his nose. Adorable.

The boy leaned in with closed eyes, wanting to meet his lips. Not so much a kiss, but enough of something to make it stealing. But then the boy in the basketball shorts stirred and turned away to the other side of the bed. How silly of him, he thought, and turned over to his side of the bed. He pretended to still be asleep, as if nothing happened, cursing his own heart.

On the other side, the boy in the basketball shorts was awake. His heart beat out of his chest, thundering in his ears. What was that? What was he trying to do? Does he like me too? His mind raced, but finally settled on one thought: I’m not alone.

Together they lay there, separated by their own minds, but so alike in their own thoughts. Maybe, one day, they would share them. Maybe one day, but not today.

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