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22 November 2011 @ 01:02 pm
fic: come in closer (i want you to) [1/?]  
Title: come in closer (i want you to) [1/?]
Chapter: i: the axial catwalk - port blue/i see you, you see me (all we do is wait)
Author: say_thanks
Pairing: Jesse/Andrew
Rating: NC-17 (overall) PG-15/R (this chapter - mentions of masturbation and porn)
Word count: 3800
Author's notes: (under cut)
Disclaimer: fictionalised versions of the ~real people~ here guys
Warning: underage

Jesse takes Hallie Kate to swimming lessons and notices a boy his age with golden skin doing laps. He doesn't know what he feels (he can't feel this way, shouldn't feel this way) but all he knows is the boy at the swim centre makes him feel things he doesn't understand (can't admit, won't admit) and it's just his luck that he's forced to be friends with him, isn't it?

This is a tale of self-discovery and experimentation. Andrew reaches a hand out and Jesse is compelled to take it, even if Andrew is Jesse's pretty stranger and Jesse can't (he's not supposed to, it doesn't work like this) be Andrew's. 

Title taken from Blue October's Come in Closer. 

Also on AO3


Hello! Thank-you for taking the time to read my story! Well, it's Jesse's story, I'm just recounting it to you as best as I can. 

Jesse is 18 for most of the story, and Andrew is 17 for most of it. Also, please note, I'm from Australia, our school system is different from the Northern Hemisphere but I did my best. I've played around with spelling (had to force myself to write 'mom' instead of 'mum') but there will still probably be ~different~ spelling and general inaccuracies when it comes to school in the US. 

The story moves slowly, because it's supposed to. I've tried to be as ~realistic~ as possible, except I've stayed away from scatplay. There are other relationships but Jesse/Andrew is at the fore, obviously. 

The soundtrack for this chapter is Port Blue's instrumental album The Airship, or just their song The Axial CatwalkAll graphics and words are my own unless specified. 



“Jesse! Look!”
Jesse looks up from the atlas he’d been perusing. Hallie Kate waves furiously as she walks to the end of the diving board. The parents sitting near Jesse chuckle when Jesse hides an embarrassed smile. He watches Hallie Kate dive messily into the water. Okay, so diving isn’t really her strong point.
He claps anyway as she scurries to him and he hands over her dolphin towel.
“You saw me, Jesse? Was I good? I think I made a bigger splash than Rory but he didn’t do it properly so it doesn’t count. Also did you like my backstroke? I was doing it before.” Hallie Kate chatters and Jesse trails after her, clutching their bags, into the change-room. The family change-room. The family change-room that has mostly women and their young daughters. Jesse keeps his eyes on Hallie Kate, holding the towel around her, as she gets changed.
“You’re improving. It’s good.” Jesse shuffles about. It’s true that there are men helping their daughters in the change-room but he still feels awkward. All the boys who come to the centre are under 10 years of age and they get changed in the boys change-room; Jesse’s the oldest, and he doesn’t even attend swimming lessons.
If Jesse can’t swim it’s because he never learnt how, which is why he approves of his mother’s decision to get Hallie Kate swimming lessons. He’d rather that it wasn’t him who had to take her though – he doesn’t even have his full license yet and so walks with Hallie Kate to the lessons.
The centre is actually a part of their school. Only a 15 minute walk but Hallie Kate is too young to go on her own, Kerri’s off at college and their parents thought 10am swimming lessons would be a good way to force Jesse to get up on Saturday mornings. And it’s fine; Jesse secretly enjoys watching his sister not struggle in the water, however he feels self-conscious when he sits and waits for Hallie Kate, as the only teenager in the small centre filled with adults and loud children.
“Did you want to take a shower?” Jesse asks.
Hallie Kate sighs. “You ask me that every time, Jesse. No! I’ll take a shower at home.” She’s taken off her goggles and pulled out her ponytail though.
“Okay, okay, just let me put up your hair.” Jesse doesn’t bother to comb it, knowing Hallie Kate will squirm and complain, so he takes the hair tie from her and carefully ties Hallie Kate’s long, curly, wet hair into a (poor excuse for a) bun.
She wanders out of the change-room to the outside and Jesse avoids the smiles of the parents around him.
They’ve just emerged from the school grounds when Jesse remembers.
“Oh, hey, put this on. Um, Mom said.” He takes out a powder-blue beanie from his backpack. It’s only September, and the heat hasn’t quite left yet, but Hallie Kate grabs for the knit wear anyway and pulls it over her head, covering her wet hair.
They walk home, with Jesse whistling.
It’s Saturday again. School has only recently started but Jesse is already stressing over the homework that’s accumulating. His friend Emma tells him that there really is no need to stress and senior year should be fun and their other friend Armie agrees. Joe isn’t even worried about his senior year and JT could care less. Kristen just patted his shoulder when Jesse voiced his concerns. It seems like everyone but him knows what they’re doing with themselves.
Jesse goes to school, does his homework, eats, drinks and sleeps, hangs out with his friends, and takes Hallie Kate to swimming lessons. He goes to the gym, sometimes, with his father when he’s so inclined, which is not often. However aware Jesse is of his lack-of-muscles, he cannot bring himself to become a regular attendee. Instead he cycles to friends’ houses and walks to school. It’s enough, for now.
Jesse smiles and laughs and nods when his friends talk about growing up and going to college and eventually getting married. He pretends he knows what he wants from life and what he wants to ‘be’. A man. A friend. Successful in what he does. Or at least successful enough so he doesn’t have to live with his parents for the rest of his life. Jesse wonders if he’ll suck so much that that’ll be what happens.
And what will he study at college? He’ll probably end up studying history, or geography or something, but secretly, he’s entertained the idea of becoming an actor. Jesse thinks he’d like it – knowing his place, becoming a character whose life has been written for them. All their decisions and mistakes, already decided; he’d just have to bring them to life.
School has been stressing him and he woke up late this morning, thus forgot to bring anything to amuse himself with.
So it’s when Jesse’s watching Hallie Kate beat everyone else in the breaststroke race that he notices the teenage boy swimming in the next lane. Jesse has never seen him before. Or thinks he hasn’t anyway. Does the boy go to their school? The school’s certainly big enough that Jesse doesn’t know everyone personally, but he’s sure that he has glimpsed everyone’s faces at least once in the past years.
Not that Jesse can see the boy’s face, only his rear end as he freestyles. He’s wearing black swim briefs and his strokes are clean, neat. The boy’s kicks are controlled, not frantic.
The light flooding through the centre’s glass walls bounce off the boy’s golden skin and ripple across the waves around him. Is his skin golden? It looks golden, in the sunshine, but then again the sun’s rays sweep across the pool and cast everything in a golden hue.
It’s curious and Jesse finds he can’t stop watching this boy as he swims. Who is he? The only people who come to the swim centre at this time are children and their parents, and Hallie Kate and her older brother. Not other teenage boys who actually get in the water and do laps.
The boy has a lean body and his arms look powerful; with every stroke he pulls himself through the water, Jesse thinks, effortlessly. His shoulder muscles tense and then un-tense as his elbows bend and straighten in the freestyle movement.
Jesse’s eyes betray him and his gaze falls to the boy’s ass. Clad only in spandex, not much is left to the imagination.
Jesse watches the boy swim to the other side of the pool, and as he comes back, Jesse continues his scrutiny.
His thighs also look powerful, muscular. Jesse imagines there wouldn’t be much to feel up. Not that he’s going to feel the boy up, or anything. Jesse frowns. Um.
Hallie Kate’s lesson finishes after 30 minutes and Jesse hasn’t been able to divert his eyes.
Jesse jumps. Hallie Kate is clambering out of the pool. He trots over with their possessions and she grabs her bag and towel and scampers away to the change-room. Jesse turns to follow her and steps right into the boy.
“Oh shit, sorry.” The boy apologizes and backs away from Jesse. They stare at each other. Jesse hasn’t seen him before. His skin really is golden. He’s toned, his chest is sort of hairless, and he’s taller than Jesse but not really any wider. His brown hair is dripping water into his eyes; they’re inquisitive and soft. He’s only wearing swimming briefs that do nothing to hide… And Jesse really needs to stop staring and go after Hallie Kate.
Jesse nods and walks away, face reddening.
Back at home Jesse stands in front of his mirror, naked. The boy at the centre was kind of like Adonis, or something, but less muscular, and maybe he’s not as vain. Or maybe he is. There are plenty of boys at his school who are built like Adonis – perfect male specimens, the kind girls swoon over and everything. The ones with the biceps and broad shoulders and who probably are regular attendees at the gym.
Jesse glances at his arms. Yeah, not comparable. He looks at his legs in the mirror. If anything, his best body part is his legs. Sort of. Well, he does cycle a lot, so surely that’s done something. But not really. His thighs don’t look nearly as lean as those of the boy’s.
The boy wasn’t muscular though, or built like the Adonises at his school. Just, lean. Muscular but not?
Jesse holds his dick and stares at it in the mirror. It’s just a dick. He’s seen other dicks, in porn, when Armie had the boys over and JT wanted to show them a really awesome video. It turned out to be porn and they’d all stalked off to the bathroom one after the other once the video was finished. Jesse didn’t though. He’d gotten an erection, sure, but whatever, Jesse just thinks about the coastline of South America and the erection goes away eventually.
In porn the guy always has a huge dick, or even if he doesn’t the girl pretends that he does and that it’s the best thing she’s ever felt. But it’s just a dick, Jesse thinks. It’s not the size that counts; it’s how you use it. Right? Not that it matters. Jesse’s masturbated a few times except it’s not really satisfying because he feels dumb afterwards. There, on his bed, with come splattered on his sheets, dripping down his hand and dick, and he just feels dumb, ‘cause he wasn’t really thinking about anything. Just wanted to get rid of the erection quicker.
Maybe Jesse’s indifferent to sex, so what?
The boy at the centre had a big dick, or what looked like a big dick. Maybe it wasn’t. Joe looks like he has an exceptionally large one when soft, but when he’s hard it’s just normal size. That’s what Joe says anyway. Jesse doesn’t really look at his friends’ dicks.
Jesse cups his balls and shivers. He’s indifferent to sex but his body’s not, if that makes sense. He thinks he’s indifferent anyway; he never had a sexual revelation like the rest of his friends and he doesn’t really get crushes on people but his body’s not averse to the odd erection or two.
“Jesse! Do you want an early lunch? I made sandwiches.” Jesse’s mother calls from downstairs. His alarm clock says 11:30.  
“Yeah, just a minute.” Jesse calls back.
He circles away from the mirror to get his clothes but catches a glance at his ass. Slowly he brings his hand to squeeze at the part where ass becomes thigh. Huh. Well at least he’s got something to feel up.
He gets dressed.
“So, Jesse, you feeling okay now?” Kristen rests her chin on her hand, drawing squiggles on her work with the other. It’s English class and they’re supposed to be collaborating about something, but it’s nearly lunchtime and even the teacher has kicked back at his desk.
“About what?” Jesse asks.
“You know, you were stressed about homework, and stuff. Is it all right now or what?
“Oh. Yeah, whatever, you know? I just want to get into a good college.” It isn’t really about the homework, more about everything that life encompasses, which includes homework, but he can’t be bothered explaining that to Kristen right now.
Emma walks over and seats herself next to Kristen. “Hey, I’m sitting here. Joe and JT are being idiots.” Jesse looks over to their desks. JT is scribbling feverishly onto a bit of paper and Joe is chortling. Armie is nonchalantly doing his work but has a smirk on his face. Jesse looks at Emma.
“They’re drawing dicks as different types of food and giving them faces.”
Kristen snorts.
“Are they naming them too? Did you know guys name their dicks?” Jesse grins at Emma’s expression. JT’s is called ‘Big Guy’. It’s not ingenious, but he understands what JT’s trying to get at.
“So how’s the Hallie Kate and swimming thing going? How long’s she been swimming now? A year?” Emma leans over to take a pen from Jesse’s pencil-case and adds to Kristen’s scribbles.
Jesse hums. “She started mid last year or something. She’s better. Better than most of the kids in her class anyway. Still sucks at diving though, but I guess that wouldn’t matter if she was in the middle of the ocean.”
“Do you think I could start there? Like, are there kids our age who swim when you go? Or is it just little kids and shit.” Emma absent-mindedly draws a love-heart and writes ‘Emma and Kristen’ in it. Kristen smiles and adds an arrow.
“Ah, no, just little kids. You’re better off swimming at the new place that opened up, you know, the new outdoor one that has heating?” He makes a face.
Emma sighs and the bell rings.
As they meander out to the cafeteria, Jesse thinks about the boy at the swim centre. 
Jesse and Hallie Kate arrive a few minutes early this time, so Hallie Kate sits next to him, swinging her legs. Jesse is bent over her, trying to tie her hair into a ponytail when the boy enters the centre. He sulks over to the front desk and talks to the teacher, furtively glancing around, whilst the teacher just laughs and taps him on the hand, offering a sympathetic smile. Jesse wonders what they’re talking about.
The boy is already dressed (or not really dressed) and he’s holding a simple black sports bag. It’s 10 o’ clock and Hallie Kate goes to join her classmates in their lane. The boy hastens over to Jesse’s bench and Jesse can see the light layer of hair on his arms and the uneven cut of his nails, but then the boy dumps his bag on the bench and walks over to his lane, where he enters the water gracefully.
The teacher at the front desk comes over to the lane and says something and the boy nods and pushes off the wall with a backstroke. Jesse can see his armpits are hairy and Jesse wonders of his own armpits, which are kind of hairy too.
The boy’s goggles look funny on him, but goggles look funny on everyone because they’re goggles. The boy stares up at the high ceiling through his goggles and does backstroke, powerful pushes through the water, thumb out first but pinky first in, shoulders rotating slightly, hips even and kicks, small.
Bellybutton near the surface of the water, head kept straight so he doesn’t zigzag, and when he nears the other end, the boy rotates his body smoothly into one stroke of freestyle then does a tumble-turn, pushing off the wall and continuing towards Jesse’s end with backstroke.
At least he tries to do a tumble-turn. It’s a better tumble-turn than Jesse could ever do but the boy ends up on an angle and splutters when he resumes the backstroke, faltering for a few seconds. Jesse laughs quietly to himself.
When he gets back to Jesse’s end the boy stops and Jesse can see him grumble. The teacher laughs and says something; Jesse can’t hear them over the squeals and conversations echoing around the swim centre. The boy starts to practise tumble-turns, over and over, spinning in the water and pushing off the wall, returning to the wall, and repeating the motion again. How doesn’t he get dizzy?
The kid eventually stops and he’s managed to improve. Now, when he kicks off, it’s not at an angle, but Jesse can see he finds it hard not to cough when he emerges from the turn.
Jesse looks at Hallie Kate. She’s waiting and laughing with one of the girls.
“She yours, then?”
Jesse startles. The woman next to him smiles brightly. A young mom, holding a complacent two-year-old girl.
“Um yes, my little sister. The one with the curly long hair.”
“She’s gorgeous. How old is she?”
Why is this woman attempting small talk?
“Eight. Nine soon. Well, not soon. In August next year. Yeah.”
“That’s my daughter she’s laughing with. She’s eight, too. Carina’s her name. Your sister’s is…?”
Jesse pauses. “Hallie Kate.” He likes his sister’s name, but sometimes people think that ‘Kate’ is her surname, and it isn’t.
“Oh, that’s gorgeous, too.”
Is Jesse supposed to compliment her daughter’s name now as well? He smiles vaguely and is distracted by the boy’s teacher walking past him, holding flippers.
The woman is relentless. “I’m Sophia. You’re a very nice boy, bringing your sister here for lessons. What’s your name?”
He looks back at her. He doesn’t really want to talk anymore, but he can’t just ignore her question. “Jesse. My name’s Jesse.”
“Nice to meet you, Jesse. I’ve always liked the name ‘Jesse’ for a boy. If Lea here had been a boy, she would have been named Jesse.” Sophia gestures at the child in her arms, who is gazing at Jesse curiously. He doubts that’s true, but appreciates the kind words anyway.

Lea starts gurgling and demanding her mother’s attention. Sophia turns away from Jesse and so he starts watching the boy again. The boy is…what? What’s he doing? What is that?
Jesse thinks it’s called dolphin-kick – Hallie Kate’s teacher tried to teach them, but the children weren’t ready yet and Hallie Kate had complained about it – because the boy is moving through the water like, well, a dolphin. His arms are to his side and he’s somehow manoeuvring his body in, out, in and out of the water, legs together and kicking down, ass bopping and he’s moving so swiftly. It’s the flippers, he’s wearing blue and yellow flippers, and he looks like a dolphin, except for the fact that he’s a boy, and Jesse is transfixed – the bopping. Every so often he kicks extra hard and his head pops out of the water and he gasps for breath, but then he’s right back in and it’s like he’s thrusting into the water, punishing it with every snap of his hips, harder -
“Hallie Kate should come over to our house some time.  You know, for a play date?”
Jesse tears his eyes away from the boy’s ass and says, “What?” Take a breath, Jesse.
Sophia smiles timidly. “A play date. We’ve got a pool and a small waterslide. Carina loves it.”
“Oh, sure. I’ll have to ask Mom first, but sure. Sounds good. Um, yeah.” Jesse breathes.
“Great! Well, look, it’s 10:30. I’m happy to give your mom a call to talk more about it. See you next week, Jesse!”
Carina bounds up to Sophia and they walk away into the change-room, whilst Hallie Kate waits in front of Jesse. “Was that Carina’s mom?
Jesse gets up. “Yeah. She says you can go to hers for play dates.”
“Yes! Yay! Thanks Jesse!”
The boy is pushing himself out of the water and Jesse suddenly has the dire need to get into the change-room before the boy comes over to retrieve his bag.
“Yeah, yeah, we still have to talk to Mom first. Hurry up, go.” He steers her towards the change-room and when they reach the entrance he twists to glance back at the boy. He’s standing at the bench where his bag is, and then he looks up in Jesse’s direction. Jesse turns on his heels into the change-room.
A routine is established.
Jesse sits on the side bench, the boy puts his bag near Jesse, gets into the water and Jesse watches him swim. There’s something mesmerizing about it – something aesthetically pleasing about watching the boy swim. Jesse’s favourite motion is the dolphin-kick, but all of the boy’s strokes are captivating.
He stops bringing books to read whilst he waits, and watches the boy instead.
Sophia called their mom. Carina and Hallie Kate start going to each other’s houses. They don’t live too far away, actually; Jesse could cycle there easily, but their mom drives Hallie Kate to and from Carina’s house.
Jesse is forced to make small talk with Sophia every Saturday now. He doesn’t really mind her but it means he has to divide his attention between her and the boy.
Other than this, life carries on the same. Kristen comes over to his and talks to Jesse about the new kid in her theatre studies class; his name is Rob, short for Robert, and he’s tall and has an accent and is funny when he speaks and apparently he came from Britain with some of his friends for senior year and one of his friends’ name is Matt, and she knows this because he is also in her theatre studies class. Matt and Rob sit and talk about British things and then Kristen became sort of friends with them because they had to do a reading together. Rob is cool, Jesse, Rob is cool.
So Jesse told her that she’s cooler and Kristen smiled very softly and told Jesse that Rob had said she was cooler than him, too.
The boy does backstroke and looks determined. Jesse furrows his brow. October is starting and it’ll be Jesse’s birthday soon.
Jesse takes Hallie Kate to swimming lessons, Sophia chats to him about Lea and her husband, Mickey; Jesse watches the boy swim and thinks about that time he walked into him.
Sometimes he catches the boy looking at him too, and Jesse supposes it’s because he’s the only other teenager in the swim centre, and for that reason there is a mutual fascination with the other’s existence.
They look at each other when Jesse passes him to go to the change room, Hallie Kate in tow. They look at each other when the boy puts his bag near Jesse and when Hallie Kate is dawdling so the boy retrieves his bag and leaves first. They look at each other when the boy is taking a breather and happens to scan the swim centre and Jesse is at that moment not turned towards Sophia.
They look at each other and it’s only for a few seconds, because one of them will turn away. You don’t hold a stranger’s gaze, you have to look away when you realize you’ve made eye contact and you have to pretend you weren’t really seeing them. You keep your face neutral, expressionless; you were just glancing around the room. If you make eye contact it’s because you just happened to look in that specific direction, not because you were actually focussing on them.
(but you are actually focussing on them)
Jesse keeps the line of his mouth slightly downturned and his face muscles perfectly relaxed. He has no readable expression because he is not feeling anything. He’s merely looking and the boy is merely looking and there is nothing to be said about it.
Except on the 5th of October, a Saturday, Jesse turns 18 and when the boy comes into the centre he seeks Jesse’s stare and smiles.
To Jesse’s surprise, he smiles back.

part ii
Current Mood: accomplished
Current Music: the axial catwalk - port blue