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if you can dodge a wrench

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monday

Steve doesn’t really know how else to describe Billy Hargrove. Asshole just seems to fit. Well.

With Starbucks, aviators and what is clearly yesterday’s beard growth, he stands out front of the school, not five feet from Steve, and spits.

Classy .

There’s been a steady trickle of students so far, dropped off by parents before the majority of buses have made their stop.

“Mr. Harrington!” A little girl with blonde hair like wisps of wind waves from across the parking lot and instantly his irritation melts. Lacy Morris. Second grade. Gifted student, however a lousy drawer, despite his best efforts. It’s that damn left hand. Smears everything.

“No one likes a kiss up, Morris.” Hargrove snorts from nearby, punctuating his little quip with a slurp of coffee. It smells good but Steve wishes he’d spill the stuff down his white polo.

Lacy only falters for a second before she giggles and skips by, undeterred. Already a flirty thing at seven. Steve sighs and makes a face in Hargrove’s general direction.

Asshole .

“Are you ever even remotely civil?”

Hargrove doesn’t even bother to turn his head to let Steve know he hears him. He just, grins.

“Wanna hug it out, Harrington?”

Not likely . Steve doesn’t give him the pleasure of a response, but instead puts on his best Monday morning smile as the first bus of the day pulls in.

“Good morning!” His students light up as they descend the steps, feet landing on pavement with little slaps. He’s lucky most kids like art, or his class. They have fun in his class.

“Mr. Harrington, can we paint today?” Paul Rittle, the smallest five-year-old in existence, chirps from Steve’s side. He squats to look the boy in the eye.

“We’re working on collage. Remember, buddy?”

“Oh yeah.” Paul sticks out a fat bottom lip and Steve is tempted to poke it back into his mouth. He chuckles and rustles black curls instead.

“You liked using the scissors though, remember?”

“Oh yeah.” This time, Paul’s eyes brighten.

Cute little stinker.

“Come on, Rittle. Scoot.” Hargrove calls.

Yeah, maybe the kid is lingering but...he’s five . Steve frowns up at the scruffy blond as Paul scampers away.

“Seriously?”

“Yeah, seriously . This isn’t a meet ‘n greet, Harrington. Some of us have actual work to get to.” Hargrove chooses that moment to walk a few paces down the sidewalk so Steve can’t retort. Even if he wanted to.

“Says the guy who teaches glorified indoor recess.” He grumbles to himself as he watches the guy go, not noticing how his khaki’s grip his ass.

Not at all.



He takes lunch duty for Nancy, because he’s nice like that and Nancy is so pregnant she can’t handle the smell of ketchup without turning green. And the cafeteria always, somehow, reeks of the stuff. Standing at the back of the room, he smiles when Dustin saunters up and leans beside him on the wall.

“I fucking hate kids.” His friend mutters.

Steve snorts. Louder than he means to and a few heads turn and he covers his mouth, coughs.

“No, you don’t.”

“Actually, I do. They’re animals.”

Dustin teaches fifth graders, which is a razor’s edge. They’re angels one day and complete monsters the next.

“It’s Monday. They’ll tucker out by Wednesday.”

“I know the feeling.” Dustin mumbles. “Mike and I are hitting up The Hawk for happy hour. Tell me you’re gonna show.”

He likes Mike, mostly, but it’s weird. For god's sake, he used to fuck the guy’s sister. That’s weird . Dustin makes a face.

“Dick.”

“I didn’t say I wouldn’t go.”

“Your face did.” Dustin sighs. “When was the last time you went out anyway?”

Before Nancy was married and knocked up by some hipster photographer .

“I think I’m growing out of the whole, bar scene.” Lie . “You realize how expensive going out to drink is? I can stay home and get wasted for half the money.”

Dustin nods.

“Right on. So when should I come over?”

“Christ.”

He laughs and a few of the kids look over. One smiles and waves and something inside Steve warms.

“I miss you, man.” Dustin sighs. “We used to party all the time.”

“Which was cute when we didn’t have to be at work before eight in the morning. Also, how can you miss someone when you see them every freaking day?”

“I’ll rephrase. I miss cool you.”

Steve mutters a gee thanks as Tracy Phillips stands up and walks over, pigtails swaying as she goes.

“Mr. Henderson, can I go to the bathroom?” His friend’s mouth lifts at the corners a little. Dustin’s a good teacher. Young. Whiny . But still a good teacher.

“Can you, or may you?” He asks. Tracy makes a face.

Then pukes on Dustin’s shoes.



In the teacher’s lounge, Hargrove says, “Nice catch, Henderson.” Dustin dumps a salad labeled Hargrove in the trash and Steve stays away from the lounge the rest of the day.



wednesday

Maxine and Lucas, the school’s new faculty it couple, corner Steve by the library during recess. They have a friend, a classmate from college, they want Steve to meet. She’s cute and sweet and sounds like the last four dates he’s been forced into, which makes him want to pluck his eyes out with the weak plastic spoons from the cafeteria.

“She does something with computers.” Lucas blurts, like something with computers is a selling point. Max rolls her eyes, swats his arm.

“She’s a graphic designer. How many times—”

“Look guys, that’s nice of you…” Steve tries to back away, look busy, somehow slink away to his classroom. Blind dates are gross but double dates are just...agony.

“Steve, you’ll never find someone if you don’t try. ” Max likes to state the obvious, from time to time, and usually Steve can point it out and get a good laugh. But the sad look on her face combined with a supportive nod from Lucas makes Steve sigh.

“What time?”



Hargrove is teaching dodgeball again, it seems, because Tyler Ross shows up to his class with a bruise under his eye and a dripping baggy of ice to mash against his face.



When Caitlin Miller shows up with a skinned knee, Steve makes a point to find Hargrove in the teacher’s lounge.

“If I have one more kid come to class injured, I’m going to go talk to Hopper.” Their principle is about as aloof as can be; but Florence, his secretary, always takes Steve’s side. And really, Hopper takes his orders from Flo.

“Oh boo hoo , Harrington. Some uncoordinated kid wasn’t paying attention, turned their back to a room full of third graders with bad aim and bit it. How is that my fault?” Hargrove chomps on kale like it should be something more...meaty. Steve doesn’t know how he eats the stuff without burying it in dressing. It tastes like turf.

“Can’t you get those foam balls that are...softer?” He knows it was a dumb thing to say the second it comes out of his mouth. The laugh that fills the little room is dripping with sarcasm.

“Are my balls not soft enough for you, sweetheart?”

Steve rolls his eyes.

“You know what I mean—”

“Listen.” Hargrove leans forward, points a metal fork at him and peels back his lips to bare flawless, white teeth. “When I want advice from some crayola pusher, I’ll ask.”

Steve squints, like somehow that’s going to intimidate a man armed with actual silverware.

“One more bruised kid, Hargrove, and I’m going to Hopper.”

He doesn’t like that Hargrove grins.

And that it makes him shiver.



Nancy finds him after school lets out, when the roar of children thundering through the halls has subsided to only a few stragglers. She waddles into his classroom as he’s straightening up the debris from the last class of the day. Someone managed to drop what feels like a thousand colored pencils on the floor and he’s under a desk when Nancy’s slender ankles pop into view. He promptly slams his head into the underside of the table.

“Oh Steve!” Her voice rings in his ears as she gingerly touches his shoulder. He slips from beneath the desk, rubbing his head. “I didn’t mean to startle you.”

“It’s fine.” He puts on a good impression of a smile and she buys it. She always did. Even when she’d told him that she’d fallen in love and it all happened so fast , he’d managed to convince her that his heart wasn’t lying shattered at her feet.

His eyes inevitably fall to her swollen belly and he swallows down the sour taste of jealousy.

“What can I do for you, mama?” He asks cheerfully, walking over to his desk to busy his hands and distract his head. Nancy’s face warms and he can see how his kindness eases her mind.

“I just wanted to see how you were.”

He glances at her over his shoulder and his face falls when he sees the concern wrinkling her brow.

“Who told you?” Steve groans, rubbing a hand across his forehead. “Was it Dustin?”

“Mike.”

“Mike?” Steve scoffs, sits back on his desk. “He wasn’t there. Heck, no one was.”

“I think he listens in on the intercoms.” Nancy says with an arched brow, giving the phone on Steve’s desk a pointed look. He snorts. But Nancy only shrugs, like it’s totally normal for some bratty, glorified, help desk nerd to bug their classrooms. “So you went up against Hargrove, huh?” She prods.

Leaning down, Steve speaks directly into the phone.

“I’m not afraid of telling some grumpy jock to eat my shorts.”

Nancy’s grin is dazzling.

“Look at you, champion for the little guy.”

There’s something about the way she says the words that makes him flinch, clear his voice and smile down at the floor. Even when they’d been together, Nancy hadn’t ever looked up to him as a savior. He wasn’t the type to end a fight. He wasn’t a dominant male who bared his teeth and made his strength known. He was the nice guy . He was the boyfriend who held the door, kept his hands to himself and didn’t use tongue on a first date.

Parents loved him.

Nancy dumped him after over a year with almost no warning. He’d been thinking about maybe proposing, even looked at what kind of ring he could afford with his salary. Next thing he knew, she’s dating some local artist and frenching the guy outside Starbucks when all Steve had wanted that morning was a cup of coffee and to pretend he wasn’t still miserable.

Steve is the champion of getting his ass kicked by karma.

Or something.

Life maybe.

“I was just…” He picks at one of the chucky pink erasers on his desk, brushes red dust against the pad of his thumb. “He’s sending me eight-year-olds fresh from the nurse’s office. I’d had it.” For some reason, he punctuates the statement with a snort.

“He’s an asshole.” Nancy concurs, setting a soft hand on his restless one and tapping her little fingertips on his knuckles. “I just wanted to make sure he didn’t...I don’t know...threaten you.”

Jesus .

Steve holds in the sigh that builds in his lungs. Was he really so pathetic that he needs a seven-month-pregnant woman to make sure he hadn’t been bullied by a gym rat?

His smile is a little less convincing, he can see it in Nancy’s eyes this time.

“I’m fine, Nance.”

After all, Hargrove isn’t the one who broke my heart.



The double date is a dud. He pays for dinner but isn’t the least bit surprised when she doesn’t ask for his number. It doesn’t really bother him because he doesn’t ask for hers.



thursday

Before the buses arrive, Hargrove stands close enough to Steve on the sidewalk that he can smell his cologne. Usually, he can ignore how good it is, can push the thought into the back of his head where it’s harmless.

But he hasn’t been laid in months and Hargrove smells like sex, coffee and sporty cologne and it’s been a long goddamn time so he makes a noise, a ragged sort of noise, and Hargrove arches an eyebrow over his coffee cup.

“Got a problem, Harrington?”

“Allergies.”



Sydney Cross’s mother sends cookies with her to school again, the words “Mr. Harrington” written across masking tape on a little tin in neat, feminine handwriting. He takes the offered gift with a smile that verges on a grimace and Sydney thinks nothing of it. She’s seven. She doesn’t realize that her mother is only sending one of her teachers goodies for a reason.

Poor Sydney doesn’t realize that her mother is lonely and after her art teacher’s cock.

Steve hands the tin over to Dustin the second he sees him in the cafeteria and the guy is quick to shovel one into his gob, moaning around a huge mouthful.

“You’re the absolute worst.” His friend groans, shoves another bite in before the first is even clear of the hatch. “I work my ass off teaching these fuckers how to survive in the world while you teach them how to finger paint and you’re the one getting cookies.”

“If one more person mentions finger painting to me this week…” He sighs and shakes his head while Dustin snorts.

“I take it you didn’t get laid last night.” Steve sighs a second time and Dustin simply pops the rest of his cookie in his mouth with a roll of his eyes. “I’m amazed. Truly. You are blessed with that face and that hair and even you can’t manage to get a girl’s number.”

“How do you know I didn’t get her number?” The halt in chewing is a dead giveaway and Steve groans. “Jesus, was it the group thing again ?”

“We worry about you.” Dustin rationalizes and Steve pushes on his eyelids with his fingers until he can see white. Dustin, Max, Max’s best friend El, Lucas, Mike, and Mike’s roommate Will are on a group text that occasionally meddles in his love life, among other things. If one of the party passes along info, the whole group knows in seconds.

It’s terrible.

“I heard you ordered a Diet Coke.” Dustin says, eyebrows high on his forehead. “We both know you’re checked out the second you order a Diet Coke on a date .”

“That has got to be the weirdest thing you’ve ever said to me.” Steve mutters, shaking his head as he looks out at the cafeteria. It’s french toast stick day so there will be puddles of maple syrup everywhere. But the kids are better behaved on french toast stick day, too preoccupied with horking down sugary goodness to cause mayhem. Thankfully.

“You’re avoiding the subject.” Dustin says with a mouth full of cookie. “You’re dialing it in on the ladies, pal.” Steve winces before he makes an annoyed sound in the back of his throat.

“Maybe I’m bored of the ladies.”

Dustin stops chewing again and Steve smirks. He knows his friend is recalling the time he’d walked in on Steve getting blown by a guy in a bar bathroom. He also knows that Dustin has always wanted to ask him about it. But never has.

“If you want dudes, I can find you eligible dudes.” Dustin taps him with the tin and Steve meets his eye. “Seriously. I know a few guys—”

“Oh my god.” He’s exhausted but there’s something endearing about his friend taking things in stride. Steve hasn’t really put a label on his sexuality, but admitting his attraction to men out loud, to someone other than a gay man , feels good. It feels, liberating. Steve is smiling when he claps a hand on Dustin’s shoulder. “Just shut up and eat the damn cookies.”

“Who’s your type?” Dustin prys and some crumbs fall from his lips to his shirt. Steve rolls his eyes and walks away, trying not to think about the smell of coffee and cologne.



friday

Florence remembers that it’s Steve’s birthday. It’s sweet, really, that she took the time to make note of the date somewhere on a calendar when his own mother can’t be bothered to remember the day he’d nearly split her in half. But he’s used to his family forgetting, he’s not used to Nancy forgetting. She’d been the one who had used to insist he have a party every year.

But this year, it seems, even she’s forgotten him. Which is fine except that it makes him wonder why he even bothers remembering his birthday.

Flo gives him a card and a kiss on the cheek when she spots him in the morning, before there’s anyone there to notice. It’s the most affection he’s received in months and it’s truly sad that the dry peck of an old woman gives him goosebumps.



He recognizes Jonathan lingering outside his classroom before the morning bell rings and Steve is tempted to pretend he didn’t see him but he doesn’t get a chance; the guy strides inside his empty room without an invitation.

“Hey Steve.” He says his name like they’re friends even though they very much aren’t and Steve holds in a grimace as he smiles.

“Jonathan, how’s it going?” He’d offer his hand but he really just doesn’t want to and Jonathan’s stay shoved in his pockets.

“It’s good.” There’s a little smile on the guy’s face that makes Steve think of the glow Nancy seems to have nowadays. Stupid in love. Happy. He envies the man before him but also feels a little robbed. Jonathan Byers, an artsy photographer and generally quiet man, is someone he has a hard time hating so he doesn’t anymore . There’s an edge to his tolerance of him, however. An unspoken dislike because, well, Jonathan is living the life Steve wanted. Married to Nancy and starting a family. Young and excited about their future.

“You here to see Nancy?” He tries asking casually, when really what he wants to say is what the hell do you want? Jonathan shakes his head, adjusts the camera bag on his shoulder.

“No, I’m working.” There’s a big grin on his face. “The school hired me to do the kids’ pictures.” He quickly waves a hand. “Well, my studio, but…” Steve puts the dots together.

“Congratulations, man. That’s great.” Really, he feels a little surprise. Jonathan generally did more fashion oriented shoots in the city, not photographing a bunch of grade school kids.

“Yeah, trying to get more steady work.” The guy shrugs. “With a baby on the way…” He grins again and Steve can feel a groan in his chest, begging to be set free.

“BYERS.” Hargrove’s voice startles them both and Steve glares when the blond appears in his doorway. “If you’re gonna clutter up my gym all freaking day with your junk, the least you can do is stay with it.”

Jonathan offers an apologetic smile as he rushes towards the door.

“Good seeing you, Steve.” He says gently, then vanishes from sight. Steve waits for Hargrove to follow, but he doesn’t. Instead, the guy lingers, saunters into his classroom and looks around.

“Chummy with your ex’s new squeeze, huh?” The guy asks, frowning as he leans in to inspect a kindergartener’s work, taped to a wall. He’s wearing a shirt that looks like it’s maybe a size too small and Steve wants to point out that they make larger sizes . But then he wouldn’t be able to see the way his biceps push the boundaries of the sleeves.

“They’re married. It’s a little different.” Steve hears himself muttering, even though he means what he says about as much as he likes saying it.

“It sure is.” Hargrove pokes at tissue paper glued to construction paper and Steve clears his throat.

“You need something?” The edge in his voice finally makes an appearance, the annoyed tone rising to the surface after he’d managed to keep it pushed away for Jonathan’s sake. But for Hargrove, Steve lets it simmer, lets it climb up his spine and tickle.

And the guy snorts.

“If I needed something, Harrington, I’d ask.”

In the same way he’d wandered in, Hargrove wanders out, like strolling into classrooms uninvited isn’t rude or something.



Dustin is the first of his supposed friends to wish him Happy Birthday. Ironically, there are more birthday well wishes on his facebook wall than the number he’s received in person when Dustin grabs him by both shoulders and shakes him. He nearly suffocates on a mouthful of turkey sandwich as his friend plops down in the chair beside him.

“Happy Birthday, old chap!” Dustin cries, proud of his terrible english accent, obviously, shooting Steve a toothy grin. Nancy pauses halfway through a mouthful of pasta salad and her eyes go wide in horror. Yeah . Steve thinks.

Oops.

“Steve…” She swallows and instantly her face is set in a pathetic, guilty expression. “It totally slipped my mind…”

“Don’t worry about it.” He tries to brush the thought away but Dustin is clapping him on the shoulder again and he’s really tempted to shove the guy out of his chair.

“It’s the big THREE OH, man. We gotta celebrate!”

Steve rolls his eyes.

“My idea of celebrating is not babysitting you and your weird, drunk friends.”

“Not babysitting, old man.” Dustin wags his eyebrows and Steve snorts. “Wingman Dustin is at your service, good sir.” He announces loudly and a hot blush fills Steve’s cheeks. “Next stop, pound town.”

Dustin’s stupidity wrenches a hard laugh from Steve’s chest. It feels nice; so he does it again. And again, until his ribs hurt.

Nancy is laughing too, her mouth curling upwards as she presses her fingertips to her lips.

“Seriously, my man.” Dustin hits him again and this time Steve does shove him, until he nearly topples over. “We need to get you laid. After that disaster of a date—”

“Jesus, Dustin.” Steve hisses, giving his friend a solid slap on the arm. Nancy’s smile slips on her face a little, interest sparkling in her eyes.

“You had a date?” She inquires with a sweet voice. Steve holds in a groan because talking about his love life with his ex is exactly what he wanted to do at lunch.

“Not really.”

“Except he did.” Dustin butts in and Steve debates smothering him. “And he didn’t even ask for her number.”

“Steve.” Nancy purses her lips like she’s disappointed and he groans, rubs his hands down his face in a dramatic show of why the hell is my life so stupid . “Was she nice?”

“She’s a designer.” Dustin offers before Steve can murder him and grins at the glare being leveled in his direction. “And a Libra.”

“Why don’t you date her then.” Steve mutters. “You meddling twerp.”

“I’m a dedicated bachelor.” His friend pats his chest like he’s proud of being single. Steve doesn’t mind being single...but he’s not walking around puffing himself up over being alone either .

Hargrove strolls in the room and doesn’t miss a beat, steals the comeback right out of his mouth.

“Bachelor is just another way of saying alone, Henderson. Don’t pretend.” He quips, tugging open the fridge to yank a water bottle from the shelf.

“Agreed.” Steve adds, arching a brow at Dustin while the guy’s mouth falls open. Like he’s been betrayed .

“I happen to like being single, thanks.” Dustin says loudly, as if volume makes him sound convincing.

“Like not getting laid too?” Hargrove asks with a deadpan expression. Steve laughs and some of his water hits the back of his nose, which results in a loud coughing fit, turning him bright red. Nancy, even though she’s enormous, reaches over the table to pat him on the back while Dustin just watches. Smirking .

“Serves you right.”

“Still funny.” Steve croaks when he can safely breathe again. Hargrove is watching from the counter, water bottle to his lips as he leans back, his stomach flexing under his shirt. It’s made from one of those wicking materials and it shows off every line of his muscular frame.

Which is just distracting .

“For your information, I don’t have trouble with the ladies.” Dustin shoots across the room. “Where as we all know there’s no line forming for your charming ass.” He adds.

“Oh I can be charming when I want to be.” Hargrove purrs . “Don’t doubt it, mop top.” For some reason, Steve knows he’s telling the truth. Knows that, looking like he does, Hargrove probably never goes home alone. He probably has his pick from the women in any bar, can be as choosy as he likes. Steve used to do the same in college, when hooking up was like a sport rather than something personal. After Nancy? He feels exposed when he thinks about getting naked with another person.

Bare and vulnerable.

“Don’t you have a class right now?” Nancy asks Hargrove, like he’s a fresh pile of dog shit, and he grins. His smile reminds Steve of sharks.

Oddly enough.

“They’re with your husband, Wheeler. Thought he could use a little play time .”

“You left him alone with a whole class ?” She sounds distraught and Steve is annoyed that her tone makes his blood pressure rise, like he’s going to leap to her aid.

“That’s your job, Hargrove. Not Jonathan’s.” He sighs, tries to sound bored. It’s not hard.

“He’ll live.” Hargrove snorts. As he pushes off the counter and saunters back out the door, Nancy visibly bristles.

“How and why is that asshole an educator?” She hisses under her breath when he’s out of sight. “He’s a horrible person.”

“He’s a gym teacher .” Dustin points out. “I don’t think they set the bar all that high.” He glances at Steve. “No offense.”

“What does that m—“

“Besides have you seen his arms?” Dustin plows ahead, shoves half his sandwich in his mouth in one go. “He can probably even bench press you , Nance.”

Steve chokes on his water again. This time, Nancy doesn’t pat his back.



That night, Dustin gets him mildly drunk before he dares to ask Steve what he looks for in a man. The last beer Steve remembers drinking is number twelve.



saturday

“You don’t remember anything?” Dustin is talking far too loudly over his waffles and Steve groans into his coffee cup, pledges silently that he will never ever drink again. Which, honestly, is like lying to himself because he knows he’ll be drunk again in under a week.

He’s a teacher for fuck’s sake.

It’s required.

“I remember that I asked you to stop shouting a minute ago.” He grumbles, staring at his friend over his Ray Bans. “People in Sweden can hear you.”

“You really don’t remember?” Dustin is shaking his head, his curls dancing around his ears. “I can’t believe you don’t remember.”

“Jesus, either spit it out or shut up.” His coffee tastes burnt, like he’d gotten the dregs of a nearly empty pot instead of fresh. It sucks but he’s not deterred. He’s survived teacher’s lounge coffee for over five years. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not the worst thing he’s put in his mouth in the last twenty-four hours.  

“You told me I was gross .” Dustin whines.

Steve laughs at that, which he immediately regrets when his head gives a pointed throb . Dustin isn’t amused. His mouth is turned down at the corners when he continues. “You said you like curly hair and I have curly hair —”

“For fuck’s sake.” The foggy memory of Dustin poking and prodding him for details on his preferences in men starts to rise to the surface. “Why would you even go there?”

“Science!” Dustin exclaims. Steve points a finger at him and glares.

“If you yell one more time—”

“I can’t find you a boyfriend if I don’t know what you like, buddy.”

“You’re buying breakfast.” He mumbles into his coffee. “And then I’m never speaking to you again.”

“I’m the wounded party here.” Dustin gestures between them with animated arms but somehow manages to keep his voice from rising to frantic squawking. “I was being a good friend and you called me gross.

“I called you gross when you asked if I thought you were attractive.”

“It’s a fair question.”

“It’s gross.” Steve sighs when the waitress makes her way over to their table and he sees the fresh pot of coffee in her hand. She fills his cup and Dustin, thankfully, waits until she leaves.

“I was trying to establish a baseline.”

“Dustin.” Steve sips his coffee loudly, lets the scalding liquid burn the tip of his tongue before he swallows it down and levels a stare across the table. “You’re like a brother to me.” His friend’s expression shifts and Steve can see a hint of a smile under exasperation. “Which is why talking about you like that is gross .”

The answer seems to work and Steve takes three long sips of coffee before Dustin speaks again.

“So you don’t remember saying Hargrove has a nice ass?”

Steve splashes a little of his coffee on the table and curses, wiping up the mess with a paper napkin as Dustin smirks.

“I said what now?”

“After you insulted me, you started yammering on about khakis—”

“Oh god.” Steve rubs his face with both hands and can still smell the hops oozing out of his pores.

“And when I asked why you were talking about khakis, guess what you said?” Dustin is full-on taunting him now with a smile full of teeth and his hands clasped together on the table.

“Dustin—”

“You said that Hargrove wears the wrong size because he likes to show off his assets .” Steve closes his eyes. Wishes he’d stayed in bed instead of letting Dustin drag him out for pancakes. “You giggled too.”

“I was drunk , Dustin.”

“You were giggling, Steve. Over Billy Hargrove .”



Fuck.