Chris - Erick's Boyfriend
Hunter - Erick's Neighbor Friend
Eugene - Erick's Neighbor Friend
Erick enters his apartment. He is just returning from the funeral of Miss Emma, his grandmother’s best friend.
Erick stares blankly toward nothing in particular as he walks into his bedroom. He unties his tie, unbuttons his shirt and pulls the belt from around his waist. He takes off his suit jacket and tosses it onto a nearby chair. He unbuttons his pants, exhales for the first time since putting them six hours prior and lets his pants fall to the floor.
Just as he collapses onto his bed, there’s a knock at the door. “Come in,” Erick groans.
Eugene opens the door and walks in. “Erick?”
“I’m in here.”
“Why is your door unlocked?” Eugene asks as he walks into Erick’s bedroom. “You never leave it unlocked – not even when you’re home.”
“There’s probably going to be a lot of changes in life,” Erick laments.
Eugene picks up Erick’s pants and tosses them onto the desk chair. “What sort of changes?”
Erick pulls the covers over his lower half so that Eugene doesn’t see him in his boxers. “If you ever wanted to know what might have been between us, you might get that opportunity.”
Eugene chuckles. “So you had your first fight. It’s not the end of your relationship.”
“Yes it is. Chris thinks I’m ashamed of us because I suggested last night that he not come to Miss Emma’s funeral today.”
“Chris thinks nothing of the sort.”
Erick sits up. “How do you know? Have you spoken to him? I haven’t heard from him at all since he left here last night to go to his company’s reception."
Eugene smiles. “He text me when he got home. Then he called me. We chatted for about two hours.”
“Why didn’t he call me?”
“Why didn’t you call him?”
Erick lies back down on his bed and pulls the covers up to his neck. “I can’t talk to him when he’s mad at me.”
“That’s probably why you haven’t heard from him.”
“He thinks I’m mad at him?”
“And you think he’s mad at you.”
Erick sits back up. “But I’m not.”
“Neither is he.”
“Really? Well, I feel stupid.”
“You should. You both should.”
Erick jumps out of bed and fishes through the pockets of his suit jacket for his Blackberry. As he’s calling Chris, he hears the ringer of another cell phone nearby. “Is that your phone?” Erick asks.
“Nope,” Eugene says with a knowing smile.
Erick smiles, kisses Eugene on the forehead and runs out of his bedroom. As he approaches the door, the ringing stops. He looks through the peep hole, but it’s obstructed – presumably by a finger. He opens the door.
“Surprise!” Hunter exclaims, laughing hysterically.
Eugene, also laughing hysterically, comes out of Erick’s bedroom with a pair of sweatpants. “You might want to these on. There’s a lady present.”
“Please, Eugene. I’ve seen more of Erick than you ever will,” she teases.
“Where’s Chris?” Erick asks as he puts his sweatpants on.
Chris pokes his head into the doorway. He smiles. “I’m right here.”
“I suppose this is just a big joke to all of you,” Erick charges.
Chris walks through the door. “It’s not a joke, Erick. We’ve never fought before. I thought you were mad at me, so I used Eugene and Hunter to test the waters.”
“I ad-libbed the surprise part,” Hunter explains. “If you didn’t want to talk to Chris, I figured you’d at least talk to me.”
“And then when you opened the door for her, I’d push through so we could talk,” Chris continues.
Erick looks at Chris, Hunter and Eugene. “That’s quite a rouse,” he remarked.
“And pretty complicated considering what you two had wasn’t really a fight,” Eugene comments.
Erick and Chris look at Eugene. Erick turns his into a glare. “What would you call it?” Erick asks.
“I call it the most exciting thing I’ve seen out of the two of you since we met – which isn’t saying much.”
Erick and Chris look at each other and chuckle.
“What Eugene is trying to say,” Hunter adds. “Is that you two are fun to be around but as a couple you’re pretty boring.”
“Because we don’t fight?” Chris asks.
“That and because you two can sometimes be so sickeningly adorable that it’s really unpleasant to be around.”
“But we intentionally don’t do anything lovey-dovey when we’re out and about with you guys,” Chris responds in defense.
“It’s subtle – glances, smiles and inside jokes. Eugene and I make fun of you two all the time.”
Erick smiles at Chris. Chris leans down, kisses Erick on top of the head and pulls him into a hug. “That’s how this drama ends?” Eugene asks.
“That’s it,” Hunter answers.
“What did you two expect?” Chris asks as he and Erick start to sway.
“Fireworks – yelling, tears, door slamming, punching and hair-pulling,” Eugene replies. “That’s why I allowed myself to get involved in this farce.”
“I shave my head,” Erick points out.
“So it wouldn’t be a fair fight,” Chris piggybacks.
“Whatever, be boring. But now that I’ve gotten you two back together, I need your help,” Eugene says.
“What’s that?” Erick asks.
“I passed my Physical Trainer exam so I’m now a licensed PT.”
“Congratulations,” Chris says.
“Would you like to be my first client, Erick?”
Erick and Chris stop swaying -- Erick, because of Eugene’s question and Chris, because of Erick’s presumed response to that question. Erick looks up at Chris. “Did he just call me fat?”
“No,” Chris answers.
While still embraced, Erick and Chris rotate so that Erick can face Eugene. “Did you just call me fat?” Erick asks Eugene.
Eugene looks at Chris, who offers him nothing. He then looks at Hunter. “You’re on your own here,” she says as she pats him on the shoulder and walks out the door.
Eugene looks at Erick, who returns a very intense stare. “Um…no,” Eugene replies.
Chris breathes a sigh of relief and walks into the kitchen for a glass of water. “How was the funeral?” he asks Erick.
“I felt bad for my grandmother. She and Miss Emma had been best friends for thirty years. My mother said a few words. She was very poised and eloquent. At the repass, she surprisingly asked why I didn’t bring you.”
“Although there are some areas I think I can help you improve,” Eugene adds as he makes a quick escape out the door.
“You know what?” Erick says. “I’m going to do it. There’s no better way for me to get back at him for that last comment.”