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The Meaning of the River Flowing

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I had gotten hard during rehearsal, when Armie and I kissed in the grass. Or Oliver and Elio. Was it us or them? I didn’t know. I didn’t know if Armie would kiss differently. I felt guilty that I wanted to know and pathetic that I yearned for more. There was a moment where the front of his jeans brushed mine. I took in such a shallow breath and he chose not to notice. That was embarrassing. It ended quickly after that. He broke the kiss. Probably because it went on slightly too long and I became a writhing mess much too quickly. Armie probably hates having to feel how desperate I am. Or maybe he thinks it’s part of Elio’s charm. I didn’t know, didn’t want to think about it. Even though that seems to be all I’ve thought about since rehearsal two days ago. After, I isolated myself with the piano and pasta. I didn’t want to see him more than I had to. I couldn’t explain why but it felt dangerous... it felt wrong to enjoy his company. Luca had suggested for me to live in a small apartment in Crema. Armie was in the building over. It felt too close and too far all at once. Knock. Knock. I took a deep breath knowing who it probably was.

“Hey Armie.”

His scent hit me so fast. A sensation floated through me that made my stomach sick. It wasn’t my dick that swelled but a small button deep inside me. I felt my body shiver from the inside out... I felt too empty. Fuck... What was happening to me?

“Hey, Tim... you ok?”

I shuffled awkwardly and screwed my face up. He didn’t know my mannerisms, I was fine.

“Yah of course. Why?”

“You’re just kinda flush... and it’s pretty cold in here.”

I blurted out.

“I’ve been kinda sick.”


“Then why did we make out?”


“Two days ago? Rehearsal?”

“Oh yah. Duh.”

I hated how nonchalant and comfortable he was while talking about locking lips with me. Just acting. Two guys “rehearsing.” Meanwhile I can’t feel my face because he hasn’t shaved and his stubble looks...



“I just came over to see if you wanted to run lines. Maybe get some coffee... but if you’re feeling sick I can...”

“Yes, Yes, why not, sure.”

Why did I stumble so much. I felt my eyes water before I could control them. Don’t cry. Don’t.

“Hey, you can talk to me dude. We’re going to be here together for awhile. If you’re not feeling good I can go.”

I touched his hand. Oh my god. Why did I do that. I took it away quickly then shuffled backwards.

“I think I’m maybe bi and I don’t really... it’s just hitting me hard.”

Where did that come from. I can’t believe I said that. I hadn’t talked to friends of family in so long and I was affection starved. I was lonely and so worried about my sexuality. He looked at me strangely but still sat on the couch, which made me assume he’s not too repulsed.


“Why what?”

“Why do you think you’re bi?”

You. Your hair. Those shorts they’re making you wear. Your blue eyes. How much I want to put my mouth on you... those lips. How much I want you inside me. I shook my head and bit my lip.

“I’ve never been attracted to a man before but now I’m having some... difficulty.”


He put his finger tips together then placed them on his knees. He looked in control, observant.

“Because of me?”

He smiled. That was encouraging. I couldn’t say yes. What would happen if I said yes. I couldn’t afford for this to be awkward. He stood and towered over me all too quickly.

“Because of the way I kissed you... and since you’ve been avoiding me.”

Why was his voice so deep and gravely? It made me break out in goosebumps.

“I haven’t been avoid-“

“-The way I slid my tongue inside your mouth and bit your lip. You groaned.”

Did he just say that? Maybe I wasn’t the only one enjoying myself after all. I smirked. I channeled Elio’s demeanor. It felt easier that way. Less intimate. I couldn’t let him see me. Not the real me.

“Maybe we should just be Oliver and Elio for a few months.”

Did he read my mind? Yes, Armie I can do that for you. I’ll spread my legs as Elio for Oliver. I was committed to the role and this sexual escape but not to real life. That was too complicated.

“What do you mean?”

“Well we can you know, just go method.”

Fun. Yah. What a good excuse for the tabloids. Somehow I knew this man would break not only Elio’s heart but mine too. So why was I the one that leaned in to kiss him?