Nearing the tracks is a mindless matter of it’s own. Where you just tell the feet to move and not bother to tell the location or how to get there. Just let it go.
Hands tucked away from sight, close to the body. For warmth or fright.
Head is not down nor looking about the area around. Just doing what the bones within do. Simple and just in it’s own right.
Eyes do the same. Keeping busy. Busy away from all and yet locked on them.
The body still moved on, giving a weak wake towards the voice. Not really taking notice of who it was.
“Hey wait up!”
Somehow the body does.
“Thanks, man. Hey how you been?” The other said with a smile, swinging an arm around the other’s shoulder’s in a greeting.
The other, Tai just gave a shrugged and started to move again. The other not far behind.
“I asked my mom if you could have dinner and spend the night. She said it was okay.”
Tai gave a glance to the other.
“We’ll just tell her your parents said it was okay. There’s a phone booth not far from here. Maybe Ms. Calleham will help like last time. What do you think?”
Tai only shrugged.
“Great! Speaking of Ms. C . . . damn, did you see her sister?”
That made Tai stop in his tracks and face the other. The once calm and lax face, eyeing the other in questionable wonder.
“What are you up too, Henry?”
“My god! He speaks!” Henry cheered and walked with glee, telling himself for such a grand goal, a sweet was in need. With that, called out. “Tai, let’s go get ice cream! My treat!”
“Henry!” Tai called out to him, picking up his pace to follow his buddy.
“Yes . . . ” Henry said back, sounding like a snake as doing so.
“Leave Jess alone.”
“I was just playing. Come on, know I’m as straight as cinnamon-bun unrolled.”
Tai just rolled his eyes, stopping in time before a car hit him at the crosswalk.
“Hey Chump! Watch your speed, ass!” Henry yelled to the driver as the car soon faded down the road.
Not long slapping Tai’s head for spacing out like he did. He rubbed his head, sighed, stretch his arms over his head waiting a crack, and went on before the light turned green.
The tone was a mock, but in hushing matter then the other.
The sudden grabbed on his right made him jump. Henry took notice and quickly let go.
“You have to tell someone, Tai.”
“Drop it.” Tai said, leaning against the wall, eyes finally choosing to look at the tracks.
“We could tell my mom, hell even my dad. He’s been looking a case. Yours would be just gold to him. He could get you out and . . . ”
“Henny . . . ”
Henry flitch at the nickname, glaring at the other. In his mind cursing his mother for speaking of that name when his friends were around.
“Sorry.” He sighed, letting his eyes looked at the building Tai was leaning against.
“I’ll take a dark cookie dough.”
“Alright. Don’t run off.” Henry order in mock before going in.
Finally leaving Tai be for a moment. Eyes never leaving the tracks. Unknowing rubbing his sore right arm through a thick jacket. Soothing the pain the best he could.
“Tai?” A soft voice called to him, snapping him out of his train of thought. “Tai Dewitt.”
He turned to face where the voice came from.
“Jessica. Hi.” He greeted her with a nervous smile, running a hand through his slightly dirty, short, black hair.
“Hi. How have you been?”
She gave a nod and started to look around.
“He’s getting us some ice cream.”
“So, um, school being good this time of year?”
“As it can be. Tutoring is what makes harder.”
“You finally caved in?”
“Had to. Grade was dropping. Sis wouldn’t hear it any other way.”
Jessica gave a shrug with little care.
“They’re are some perks. Wish I could drop it. But then I would be at home longer with that . . . thing. And not to forget about him.”
Tai tried not to laugh.
“I’m sure Bubba is a tame tabby once you know tell him yes.”
“In his dreams. I really hate it though. He’s a great and all. But . . . ”
“Burr . . . the cones of yummy cream always freezes what it shouldn’t.” Henry said in a ramble coming from the shop.
“Wouldn’t that be a shame.”
Henry looked to see Jessica.
“My oh my, the girl that make me straight. Have my prays been answered?”
“Henry . . . ” Tai gave a warning.
“Just like Brainless Bubba the Tall. In your dreams. I still have time before any so-lushly giving can happen. A green fairy is last on my list.”
“Oh, hurt me not. Bitter sweet false truth. Makes the mantle want more. Thy still strike again, I will ready the hold of lust.” Henry ended with a wink, walking over to Tai, who at the moment wished he was somewhere else that very moment.
He took the frozen treat with a tone of sadness of humiliation of thanks.
“You know Henry Gerald Hampertton V, you should put more thought like in your work not your insults.”
“Nah, then my buddy here would be lonely if I did that.” Henry said, once more pulling Tai in a shoulder hug.
“I think I’ll live . . . while you try to get some learning in that brain of yours.” Tai stated, but fell on deaf ears.
“Make learning with porn or something, Jessie Fessie and we’ll see.” Henry said to the girl.
She answered back with. “Health is for that.”
“If I take that class one more time, the teachers might catch on.” Henry word in the most hush tone there was.
Finding her eyes rolled, landing on Tai, who tried to find something great about the ice cream in his hand. Not was going with the others.
“Are you coming back to school, Tai?”
Henry then cutting in with. “But that’s okay. Tai’s got me.”
“Good to know, Henry. Where’s the nearest bridge.” Tai ending with a few licks from his treat.
Jess butted in. “I better get going. Stop by when you can. My sis loves seeing you . . . though only one of you, and I can understand why.”
“Hey! What is this? Insult the gay day! I’m a ball of fun! Ask anyone! In fact as Tai right here, Miss. Fessie. He’s known me for years and not once has he never told me to buzz off! So Ha!”
She only shook her head, bit them goodbyes, and went on her.
“Man, I’m so glad she’s doesn’t have a dick . . . ”
“Stop right there, Drama Queen.”
“Still . . . ”
“Be gay or not. The world can’t take it.”
“Fine. What did you ever see in her anyway? You have a thing for the hot-nerd-redheaded-stepchild ideal?”
“I never saw anything in her.” He stated before adding. “She’s nice and not loud like someone else I know.” Ignoring that last bit Henry said.
Henry only glared at Tai. Looking away along with his glare, eating his treat.
“I liked it better when you were quiet.”
“Fine. I will.”
“No! Don’t do that!” Henry spoke out, grabbing Tai the sleeves of his jacket, cone on the floor. Leaving a streak on Tai’s jacket.
“Good, you didn’t go quiet.”
“Can’t, when I have to yell at you right now.”
Even though the tone was far from that.
Brushing off his friend, able to see how bad the mess was. To which gave Tai a grim look.
“I’m sure, Miss. C could get it out and . . . we get to see Jess, again . . . ” Henry gave a slight pause before adding. “Wait, my mom can clean it.”
Freeing Tai from his finish cone, eating the part he won’t seeing he couldn’t do it with his. But Tai was fighting against it.
“Henry, chill. I’m not going back anyway.”
He looked back at his friend.
“Yes. I like to walk around some more before dark. Now you can be my fairy and lead? Or run on home and go get wax?”
Not waiting for an answer, Tai went on. Heading to the tracks this time.
“I only did that one time! Let it go!”
Henry rushed off to catch up.
Using the sun as their clock, the duo walked on. Balancing on the steel beams of the track.
Henry whistling tone unknowing if it was a real song or not. Tai walking backwards on his beam, looking to see the town getting smaller every step he took.
“Mom’s breaking out the family style for dinner. Sticking to our roots as she’s says.”
“Not wanting to no Crackers cramping her ways?”
Henry looked to Tai with a raise brow.
“But she loves you. She thinks pulling you out in the sun and hard labor long enough, you’d be part of the family yet.”
Tai gave a lumpy smile to Henry as a thanks.
“How, ah, you get hurt this time?”
“Don’t . . . ”
“A real answer will less likely put you in a arm lock. Blacking out is also a bonus.”
“My parents don’t like you.”
“I’ll go find a giant pond of bleach, right away.” Henry growled with an eye roll.
“No not that. Your fruit side.”
Henry stopped, jumped off the beam he was walking on. Turned to face where Tai’s house was. Cupped his hands around his mouth and gave a big shout.
“FUCK YOU, DWITTS!”
“BESIDE MY BEST BUD, TAI! YOU CAN SUCK MY HORSE LOT!”
“What?” Henry asked with a cheesy grin, adding. “You offer first dibs?”
“You’re such a dick!” Tai shouted, jumping from the beam, trying to meekly-joke hit Henry.
Knowing it was all for play. Henry could see the giant grin on the other’s face.
“I would hope I am. Fairy or not. This baby will get me places!” Henry said in proudness, pointing at himself with a large grin.
Tai finally gave a weak shove to the other and kept walking. Henry did the same, but stopped, seeing they were nearing the border of the next town.
“Tai. We better head back. Dark. Food. Hungry. Sleep.”
Tai did stop, noting his feet were just inches away from the huge welcome sign that greeted the nearby town. Glancing over to see Henry waiting for him to follow back.
“You’re not coming back, are you?”
“I’m that easy to read?”
“Have been for the years I’ve known you, man. Easy.” Henry said, giving a weak laugh at the insight joke of the words he used.
“Seems like a harmless jump really.”
“Would you do it?”
Tai didn’t answer.
“You’d be miss.”
Tai only nodded, knowing very well of who he speaking about.
“I might turn into those housewives that lost husbands to war.”
Tai busted a laugh. Henry soon following.
“If my wife is going to miss me, why don’t she come with?”
“She’s not as brave as you are.”
“We would have each others back. Head north.”
“And what . . . meet Santa? We’re fifteen. A little old don’t you think?”
“Beats for whatever left for this town to give us.”
“My mom and dad and sibs will someday understand my choice. Someday.”
“You really think that?”
“Just as I think your parents will soon see that their assholes who need to see help. Yes. Because . . . ”
” . . . It’s everything that got the stiches to stick together through even heaviest winters. No more show tunes for you. It rots your brain.”
Tai let a small sigh leave his lips, looking ways of the path that lead north. Longley and wishfully.
“But I’ll tell you one thing, Henry. It’s a real none thinker to do things like this.” Tai said, mindlessly, soon meeting eyes with the other, before adding. “But that taste of freedom, only get’s stronger with every waiting moment.”
Another deep sigh, Tai quietly thinking to himself of what to do when dark was finally setting.
Henry face then brighten.
“What?” Tai asked, when being cut off from his thinking.
“Let’s do it after we have our last hot meal. Pack what we can and go north. With our heads straight up our asses that they look like hats!”
“Who’s the brave one now?”
“Only because if I don’t, you’ll leave without my knowing. Remember. I have known you for a long time.”
Tai rolled his eyes. Upon seeing Henry’s hand in front of him, a blob of spit within. Tai copy the motion.
“If you’re not up. I’m leaving without you.”
“I’m like a bloodhound. I’ll find you.”
The deal was made. They headed back to enjoy their last warm meal. Waiting night to pack. Heading down the tracks that went north. Knowing that they won’t be looking once they did.