“Man, Kristen has got an ass on her. You can’t believe what we did last night. I’ve got that bitch sucking my dick like a pro.” Jason smiled and nudged his best friend Ryan as they sat in the balcony of the school pool watching swim practice.

“How are you making time for Kristen when you’re dating Miranda?”

“Her mom hates me with a passion. The bitch makes me have Miranda home by seven. I got my cock sunk in Kristen’s throat by seven thirty. She’s the biggest whore in school.”

Ryan shook his head and eyed his friend. “I thought that was you.”

“Okay, yea. I’m a whore, but you know what I mean. The bitch will go down on a fucking mule if it says she’s pretty. I can’t stand to look at her face, but I swear, I’m gonna be balls deep in that ass right after The Valentines Day Dance. She just doesn’t know about it yet.”

“How are you going to pull that one off?”

“It’s call the afterparty. Miranda has to be home right after the dance. I’m gonna be working Kristen over something fierce. I’m planning to get her so blitz she can’t even see straight. By the time she knows what I’m doing, my little swimmers will be doing laps in her ass. I’m gonna video the whole thing.”

“Not bad. You’re gonna videotape date raping a girl in the ass. Can’t say it’s the smartest plan in the world, but it’s all you.”

“Damn straight. If Miranda won’t put out, I have to get it anywhere I can. Law of the jungle, man.” Jason slapped Ryan on his back as he stood up. “I gotta go. Kristen wants to go pick out a dress for the dance. If I’m really really good, maybe I’ll get to squeeze her tit for a solid two seconds before she chickens out.”

“Why are you even dating her?” Ryan stood with him, shaking his head in disbelief.

“Untapped pussy, man. I just have to pop that sexy little brain’s cherry. I’m gonna video that event too. Maybe even post it for making me wait so fucking long. Cock teasers need to be punished.”

“Good luck with that.” Ryan said as his friend walked away.

Ryan sat back down and rested his feet on the railing in front of him. With a heavy sigh, he pulled the digital recorder out of his pocket and listened to the conversation again. Satisfied it would be enough. Ryan stood and walked from the pool facility. He was home and finished with his homework by six. At seven ten, he watched Jason’s car disappear down the street as he looked out his bedroom window at Miranda’s house.

He waited until Saturday morning to walk down the street and knock on Miranda’s front door. Mrs. Emily Tan answered the door and smiled as soon as she saw Ryan. Her dark hair with hints of red highlights in her bob shaped her face perfectly as usual. He was drawn to her dark almond shaped eyes and rounded cheeks. She seemed like a tiny jewel imported from a far off land. He really didn’t know if Singapore was so far away these days, but it always seemed to be when she spoke about her earliest memories there before her parents had immigrated to America.

“Ryan. How are you?”

“Good, Mrs. Tan. How are you?”

“Fine. I was just getting ready to go out shopping. What do you need?”

“Miranda. I need to talk to her about something.”

Her eyes narrowed at his scowl and odd sound to his voice. “What’s wrong?”

Ryan shrugged. His eyes found hers and dropped. “I’m betraying a friend Mrs. Tan. I don’t really know what to do. I don’t really know which loyalty is more important.”

She motioned him in and shut the door. “Explain it to me.” Emily said as she guided him to a sofa and sat down next to him.

Seated, Ryan pulled the recorder out of his pocket and looked at it. “I’ve never known a world without Miranda in it. All the birthday parties, street parties, and Fourth of Julys. Even though we don’t really talk much anymore, I still consider her a friend. I don’t want her hurt.”

“Who’s hurting her?” Her voice was sharp and demanding. The brown eyes locked on the recorder in his hands.

“I’m not sure you want to hear this, Mrs. Tan.”

“If it concerns Miranda, I do.”

Ryan looked up to see her breathing had increased. Her lips were pursed together in a combination of worry and determination. It was the expression she had when she was really concentrating on something. He held the recorder up and hit play. His eyes were closed as his friend’s voice filled the silence. He heard Mrs. Tan’s sharp intake of breath and then a heavy exhale. Ryan’s eyes flew open when he felt her hand latch onto his wrist. It gripped tighter as the tape went on.

When the tape was finished, he stopped it and placed the recorder on the sofa next to him. His hand dropped to hers. “That kind of hurts, Mrs. Tan.”

“Oh. I’m sorry, Ryan.” Her head came up as her fingers uncurled from around his wrist. Her voice grew in anger with each word. “I didn’t mean…that little prick. I’m gonna cut his balls off.”

She slipped her hand away as he turned it over. Pulling up his sleeve to get a better look, he revealed four perfect indents in his skin. The blood was already pooling around the wounds.

“Oh, Ryan.” She gasped. “I’m so sorry. I didn’t know I was doing that.”

Emily took his hand and nearly dragged him upstairs to the master bathroom. He watched as she rummaged through a drawer and pulled out a well-stocked first-aid kit. She worked with practiced ease as she cleaned the wounds. Her bottom lip between her teeth. Ryan’s eyes looked down at her and found her cleavage staring up at him. After a full minute, he realized what he was doing and turned his head. He was now staring at a pair discarded red lace panties. They’d been tossed on a bench seat in front of her makeup mirror.

“They’re panties, Ryan.”

Ryan blinked. His head slowly turned towards the voice to find Mrs. Tan smiling up at him. He felt his cheeks growing warm and knew he was blushing. Dropping his eyes from hers, he locked on her cleavage again. He let out a startled gasp when her hand came up and lifted his chin.

“Those are breasts.” She was trying not to laugh at his obvious discomfort. Dropping her eyes she looked down his body. “And that appears to be an erection. I guess everything works the proper way, Mr. Walker. That’s always nice.”

“Sorry.” Ryan mumbled with his eyes shut tight.

“Have a seat, Ryan.”

She motioned for him to sit after she picked up her panties and tossed them in the hamper. Ryan’s eyes had followed them as they drifted in an arc through the air and disappeared. His hand came up to wipe imagined sweat from his brow. He scooted over quickly when she sat down next to him.

“Look at me, Ryan.” His head came up. She was staring at him intensely. “Do you treat girls the way Jason does?”

“No, ma’am. I don’t treat girls at all.”

“What does that mean?”

“I’m…I’m not aggressive. I’m not like that at all. I just don’t…”

“You’re a virgin.” Her lip curled up in a soft smile. The way she said it was more of a statement of fact than a question.

Ryan nodded. “I’ve had chances. I think. I’m just not the aggressor. The initiator. I want to, but I don’t want to make a fool out of myself being horrible.”

“Very few boys are good the first few times. A girl’s first time is usually extremely disappointing. It’s just the way it is. You’ve always seemed like a good boy. Do you talk and think about girls the way Jason does?”

“No. He’s a friend. Always has been. I just follow along the way I always have. Kind of a habit, I guess.”

“Have you ever heard the phrase, guilt by association? That’s where you are at the moment. Jason is a despicable human being. If you call him a friend, so are you. It was brave and honorable what you did. You can’t make excuses for what he is and you can’t be friends with someone like that. He’ll only lead you into trouble.”

“What am I supposed to do. He’s one of my only friends.”

“You’re graduating in a few months. Go off to college and become something. Make new friends when you get there. Decent friends. It’s natural to drift apart from the people you grew up with. Don’t worry too much about Jason. He’ll probably end up in prison while you’re away. You don’t want to be in the cell next to him. Do you?”


Mrs. Tan wrapped her arms around him as far as she could and gave him a gentle squeeze. Ryan felt the swell of her breast pressed against his arm and then her warm lips on his cheek. His eyes were once again focused on the gap between her breasts. Her golden brown skin looked so soft. There was a gentle sheen to it like she’d used a lotion on her skin. Her hand once again reached up to focus his eyes on hers.

“You like them?”

Ryan nodded while scrunching up his face as if in pain. He was making a fool out of himself. The only reason he was already out the front door was the arm she had wrapped around him. “I’m sorry. They’re right there. I can’t help but look at them.”

“It’s okay. They haven’t got this much attention in years. If they could blush, they would.”

Before he could react, Mrs. Tan leaned in and kissed him gently on the lips. It was just a soft press of skin. Ryan’s eyes opened wide. He saw her eyes curl with her smile as her kiss went from his lips to the corner of his mouth and then his cheek. He could feel his heart rate increasing exponentially each time her silky warm lips touch his skin. He felt her hand run along the other side of his face and then her thumb ran across his lips. She wiped dark smudges of lipstick from his cheek then ran a hand through his sandy blonde hair.

“That was a thank you for caring for my daughter.”

“Mom?” Miranda’s voice carried into the bathroom causing them both to move away from each other. Mrs. Tan was rearranging the first-aid kit when Miranda appeared in the doorway. Her face turned to surprise when she saw Ryan sitting on the bench seat. “Ryan? What are you doing here?”

“He got scratched up and I was putting him back together.” She said offhandedly. “I need to talk to you about something.” She turned to look at Ryan. “Where’s the recorder?”

“On the couch.”

“All right. Come on downstairs.” She motioned for Ryan to follow her out of the bathroom. Miranda had turned and disappeared. Emily stopped in the doorway and spoke in a low voice when Ryan got close. “You should adjust so it’s not so obvious.”

Ryan groaned as he tried to hide his erection. He leveled a tiny exasperated glare at the soft laughter coming from Mrs. Tan. Adjusting as best he could, he followed her downstairs. Her head turned a few times to catch him watching her ass as she walked. He was surprised to see a slight blush creeping up her cheeks. When they got to the front sitting room, Miranda was staring at them both with her arms folded around her thin body.

“I should leave.” Ryan blurted out as Mrs. Tan reached for the recorder.

“No. You should be here.”

Ryan shook his head. “She’ll hate me. I don’t…I can’t see her like this.” He spun on his heals and disappeared before anyone could react.

Three hours later, Ryan was absentmindedly playing video games between cleaning an already clean room when his cell phone chimed. Looking at it, he read the words, “Please come over.”

Five minutes later he was raising his hand to knock when the door opened. Mrs. Tan smiled at him and waved him in. “I have to go shopping and run some errands. I don’t want her to be alone. She’s upstairs in her room.”

“She okay?”

She nodded. “She will be. Go on up, she’s expecting you.”

“To her room?”

“Yes, Mr. Walker. Talk to her and listen to her. I’ll bring home pizza. You can stay for dinner. Just make sure you’re both virgins when I get back.”

Her lips curled as she poked fun at him. With that, she turned and left him at the front door slipping out of his coat and shoes. His feet seemed to get heavier with each step up the stairs. The image of the little neighbor girl, who cried on the bus the first day of kindergarten until he’d sat next to her and held her hand, flashed in his mind. The very next day, he was waiting on her doorstep and they walked hand in hand to the bus. Her eyes had filled with tears, but had remained silent. She’d simply rested her head on his shoulder and clung to his hand. He’d always hated to see her cry. Almost as much as he’d hated to see her kissing Jason.

She was sitting on her bed with her back against the wall and her knees tucked under her chin when he stopped in her doorway. They looked at each other for a moment. Her eyes were puffy and red. Her normally perfect skin was mottled with streaks of redness. She smiled a sad smile up at him.

“You okay?”

She shook her head slowly at first but it became frantic as the tears started again. He watched as she curled in a ball on the bed facing away from him. Ryan didn’t know what to do. Hesitantly, he stepped into the room. With each step he gained momentum and was soon climbing onto the bed and tucking himself in behind her. His arm went around and found her hands clutched under her chin. He froze when she spun around and clung to him with her head pressed to his chest and her arms trying to pull him tighter.

“Shh.” Ryan whispered into her hair as his arms encircled her. She rose up to let him slide his arm under her body so she could rest her head on his upper arm. “I’m sorry, Miranda. I didn’t mean to hurt you. Shh. Just stop crying.”

It took what seemed an eternity for her tiny hiccup-like sobs to quiet. His hand was running up and down her back as he tried to ignore the growing pain of her head on his arm. When she finally pulled her head up to look at him, he grabbed a pillow and tucked it under them both. After pushing some hair from her face, his thumb began to brush the skin at her temple. She blinked long slow blinks as the tears dried up. Her voice was low and raw when she spoke.

“He never liked me, did he?”


“Why didn’t you tell me?”

“I did. I told you when you two first started hanging out that he wasn’t your type. You didn’t listen. I told you all about him. You didn’t care. You started dating him, anyway. You wouldn’t have believed me.”

“But he’s your friend.”

“Not anymore. He was planning on hurting you. I’m done with him. So are you.”

“Is that why you stopped talking to me? Because of him.”

“No. It was because of you. You liked that asshole. There are a ton of guys, but you picked him. I had to watch you make out with him. Had to hear the things he said about you behind your back. It was killing me.”

Miranda’s head came off the pillow to stare at him. It was a searching look trying to find an answer to a question she didn’t ask. Her brown eyes danced back and forth as he stared back at her. Unnerved, Ryan rolled to his back and stared up at the ceiling.

After another minute, Miranda snuggled closer and rested her head on his chest. Her hand lay over his heart, feeling the heavy beat of it. “He was your friend. I thought if he was good enough for you, he was good enough for me.”

“He’s not. He’s just always been my friend. I don’t have many. I don’t have any, now.”

She mumbled something Ryan couldn’t decipher. Raising his head to look at her, he saw her eyes were shut. Her body seemed to relax into him. She was asleep. Resigned to be a pillow, Ryan laid his head back down and closed his eyes. His hand came up and rested on hers as he listened to her breathing regulate. He could hear the tick tock of a clock on the wall and the whoosh of the heat flowing through the vents.

Sometime later he felt fingers running through his hair. His eyes struggled to open. He’d fallen asleep as well. Looking up, he saw Mrs. Tan’s smiling face staring down at him.

“Dinner’s ready.” She patted Miranda’s back and then shook her gently when that didn’t work.

The two of them stumbled down to the kitchen to find the pizza waiting for them. They ate in relative silence. Emily watched them both from across the kitchen counter with a curious smile on her face.

“Why haven’t you two ever dated?” She asked.

Ryan looked up with surprise written all over his face. He looked from one to the other and then lowered his head. “I don’t know. I never thought it was an option.”

Miranda stared at him for a moment without saying a word.

“You’re handsome and she’s beautiful. Both of you looked so sweet sleeping together. It seemed natural somehow. You’re telling me you two don’t have any romantic feeling towards each other?”

“Mom.” Miranda exclaimed in a loud desperate voice.

“What? You think he’s cute, don’t you?”

Miranda eyes bulged as she tried to silently shut her mother up with a look. Ryan was staring at her out of the corner of his eye. He was still looking at her when Mrs. Tan spoke again.

“She’s beautiful. Isn’t she, Ryan?”

Miranda’s head turned to see his answer. The two of them stared at each other. Neither one of them sure what to do or say. Ryan lowered his head and almost imperceptibly nodded.

“Have you two ever kissed?”

“Mom!” Miranda stood up so quickly the stool tipped over and crashed to the ground. She was out of the kitchen and her feet stomping up the stairs in an instant. They both heard her bedroom door slam shut.

“Have you?” Mrs. Tan was staring at Ryan.

“No. Not really. A few pecks when we were really little. Nothing that really meant anything.”

She came around the counter and sat down on the stool Ryan picked back up from the floor. Patting the stool next to her, Ryan sat back down and took a drink of soda. Her fingers ran through his hair again as she stared at him with a curious little smile on her face.

“I made a decision today. You’re an actual good boy. A good man.” She corrected. “You’re both technically adults and both virgins. I want you to be her first.”

“What?” Ryan choked on a bit of pizza. Spitting it onto the counter. It brought a giggle out of her.

“You are skittish, aren’t you. I don’t know many mothers who would actually give a boy permission to have sex with their daughter. I figured you’d already be slamming her bedroom door by now.”

“You want me to just go up there and crawl into bed with her?”

“No.” She was still giggling as she shook her head. “Not like that. I want you to treat her right. Respect her. She was planning to lose her virginity to that monster on Valentines Day. Thank God that didn’t happen. I want you to date her. When it’s right and you both want it, it’ll happen.”

Ryan exhaled a long heavy breath. His eyes looked up to the ceiling as if he was trying to see into her room. He’d never thought of her like that. She’d always just been the girl next door. “I don’t know how to be someone’s first. I’d be horrible. She deserves someone better than me.”

“Wow. Are you really passing up sex with my daughter?” Her smile grew until she was laughing loudly. “How do you know if you don’t try? You can’t be that bad. I didn’t really give you a chance to kiss me back, but I assume you’ve at least kissed a girl before.”

“I have.” Ryan said defensively. “I’ve made out at parties with a few girls who attacked me.”

“Never you? You’ve never initiated at all? You’re that shy?”

Ryan shrugged. “I don’t know if it’s shyness. I just don’t know how to start things. Girls are a bit tough to read sometimes. The idea of having my balls crushed is a pretty good deterrent. I have no idea what Miranda thinks of me.”

“She likes you. I know she trusts you. If you two would just talk honestly about things, you might figure it out all by yourselves. Are you at least a good kisser?”

“How should I know? I don’t kiss myself.”

Mrs. Tan buried her face in her hands and snickered. “Good point.” When her head came back up, she saw him with his arms folded and glaring at her. “Sorry. I just forget how teenagers are so clueless when they aren’t trying to pretend they’re experts at everything. Miranda’s the same way. I think maybe everyone is. I certainly was at your age.”