1.0 – Japan, 11:44am
It had come to Mao’s attention that Shoma was, as she had heard, less-than-optimally-aware of some of the finer parts of life. The parts that happen in beds, specifically. She’d realized this when the twenty-year-old—and seriously, how had no one figured this out yet?—had left his gaming profile open on his laptop while she’d been visiting. She’d noticed a review for one of the adult games she’d seen Kanako playing, and been equal parts horrified and intrigued at the thought of him playing it. Wondering what he’d thought of the game, she clicked on the review.
nikuman97: boring. too many naked people. no plot. doesn’t seem to have a point.
Oh, honey. This was... She kept clicking. Another H-game.
nikuman97: why does everyone in this game just want to take their shirt off. it’s cold.
Did he—did he really not know? And why had he downloaded so many in the first place? She called Dai. He picked up after several rings, mumbling a bleary response.
“Hey. Has Shoma ever fucked anyone?”
“Correction. Does Shoma know what fucking is?”
“Mao.” She heard Dai sigh. “Do I want to know what this is about?”
“His gaming reviews. On H-games. He doesn’t seem to understand the point of them. Did his parents ever talk to him about sex? Or Mihoko? I got the puberty talk from my coach.”
“We don’t sprout hips when we go through puberty, Mao. My coach just talked to me about not getting distracted after she caught me fooling around with the competition.”
There was a pause, then they both spoke at once.
“Oh my god, Shoma never got the sex talk.”
2.0 – Canada, 3:06pm
Tracy knew some people called her the den mother of the Cricket Club, but really, this was ridiculous. She took a screencap of the text message chain and forwarded it to Brian.
Brian. I’m not doing this.
Her phone beeped.
She responded quickly.
I’m not having this discussion with him and that’s final.
Her phone showed him typing for several seconds before she finally got a reply.
I’ve already given Javier the talk. I’m not giving it to Yuzuru. He’s 23, he can figure it out.
Javier was 20 and had a girlfriend.
Yes, and I didn’t know anything about that sort of conversation, so look how well that went.
Look. You’re having gay sex, he’s probably having gay sex. You make more sense.
No response. She sighed. No one liked having to give the sex talk, but someone had to. Otherwise things got... complicated.
Brian, you have more experience with this than I ever will.
Absolutely not. I have skaters coming in, gtg.
Well, they all had skaters to teach, and she wasn’t going to let him weasel out of this one. Putting her phone away, she stood up and began to stretch.
1.1 – Japan, 11:55am
Shoma opened the door.
“Mao? Dai? What are you doing here, it’s,” he yawned, looking over his shoulder, “noon.”
Mao pushed past him, taking a seat on the sofa. She quickly busied herself with the large bag on her shoulder, rummaging through it.
As she unpacked books and pencils from her purse and pulled out her laptop, Dai joined her, crossing his legs and perching himself on the sofa.
“Sit.” Mao pointed to the floor in front of her, and Shoma sat, still confused. They were being awfully cagey. Mao and Dai exchanged a strange look, and she folded her hands primly in her lap.
“Shoma, did Mihoko ever give you the talk?”
“What talk? Me and Mihoko have lots of talks. About skating, and jumping, and telling me to eat more vegetables..." He counted off on his fingers as he spoke. He couldn’t remember any other talks they’d had, really. Mostly about those three things.
Dai sighed. “No, Shoma, the... the talk about how your body is changing, and stuff like that.””
“Actually, Mihoko told me I wasn’t going to grow anymore..." He pouted. It wasn’t really fair. Maybe he’d have a late growth spurt and show everyone.
“Any... urges you might be feeling?” Mao sounded like a teacher, which was annoying. He didn’t like when she got all teacher-y like this.
“Just to sleep, really.”
Mao took a deep breath, then opened her laptop, revealing some sort of diagram. “Shoma, this is a penis.”
Dai closed his eyes, letting out a soft exhale. “Shoma. You have a penis.”
“I do?” He couldn’t say he’d ever noticed one of those things. Maybe it was under his bed?
“It’s—it’s a thing that sticks out, on the front of you.” Mao said. “It’s a boy thing.”
Oh, that thing. “It’s annoying. I can never get it to fit in my costumes right.”
Dai smirked. “Yeah, I’ve noticed.”
“Can I get rid of it?”
The smile disappeared. “Shoma, you, no... do not get rid of your penis.”
“Why?” It would be a lot more convenient, honestly. It wouldn’t get stuck in his pants or hurt when he bumped into tables.
“It. It feels good. It’s a good thing.” Dai looked at Mao. “Can you help me out here?”
Mao picked up one of the pencils, pointing to a round bit on the screen. “So this, this is a penis.”
“Mao, those are balls.”
She moved her pencil up a bit, to an oval thing. “This is a penis. It sticks out, you use it to pee, and it can get big, sometimes—”
“If you’re lucky,” Dai added.
“Get bigger, sometimes, and then it’s used for sex things. It feels good during the sex things.”
Okay, now he was even more lost. “The what things?”
“You put your penis in things and it feels good, Shoma.” Dai didn’t make much sense, but it was Dai. He figured he was probably right.
“What kind of things?”
“Hole things. Like, holes in people.”
“Like... a mouth?” He bit his lip, trying to think of people holes. Nostrils maybe, but they were small. Or ears?
“Yes, that’s one kind of hole. Or... a girl hole.” Mao fluttered her fingers. “Or a boy hole! Any hole is okay, it doesn’t have to be one or the other.”
“She means an asshole,” said Dai, looking firmly at his hands.
“Well, yes. If you like boys. But that needs lube, or else the penis... sticks. And that doesn’t feel good.”
Shoma tilted his head. “Lube?”
3.0 – Russia, 6:13am
When Mikhail walked out of the locker room to begin warming up for practice, he didn’t expect to see two coaches—neither of them his—waiting for him outside the door.
“Ms. Tutberidze, Mr. Plushenko. This is a surprise,” he said.
“Sit,” Eteri said. He sat.
“It’s been brought to our attention, over the past few days, that some of your competitors have been... poorly educated, about some aspects of anatomy. And we will not have you falling behind.” Evgeni spoke, gaze directed somewhere above Mikhail’s head.
“So,” Eteri said. “The basics of the male anatomy..."
2.1 – Paris, 9:15pm
The hotel room was hot. Yuzuru scratched at his collar. He didn’t really know why they’d brought him in here. All he’d done was mention his texts with Tracy to Johnny and Stéphane, and they’d dragged him into their room and pushed him onto one of the beds.
“So, Yuzu,” Johnny said, smiling widely. “Looks like we’re way overdue on this conversation.”
“All I ask is, what is sex? I am hearing people talk about it. It sounds distracting.”
“Well, you’re not wrong, kid. It’s a whole lot of fun. Maybe even more than skating.”
Stéphane stifled a laugh. “That would explain your career trajectory.”
Yuzuru frowned, thinking hard. What an odd sentence. “What would be more fun than skating,” he said, “and I have not heard about it yet?” Then, he paused, thinking hard, before adding, “Is it another quad jump?”
1.2 – Japan, 12:23pm
“And that is a list of all the things people often use as lube!” Mao said with a flourish, putting down her pencil. She held up the paper in front of her as she read.
Dai leaned over, looking at her list. “You forgot to add skate polish,” he said.
Shrugging, Dai said, “It was the locker room.”
“You didn’t have lotion?” Her voice got higher, almost squeaking.
“Peppermint scented. That doesn’t end well. Oh, and Shoma, don’t use too much lube. I did that one time, it was..."
“No, Dai. There is no such thing as too much lube.”
“You say that now.”
“Yes, and I say it forever.”
“Oh, what about coconut oil?"
Mao scoffed. “Yeah, if you want to get pregnant. Oil breaks down latex, remember?”
Dai looked at her. “Mao. Pregnant. Me.”
All of this talk was confusing. Wasn’t pregnant what his mom was with Itsuki? Was Dai going to have a baby? “Is Dai pregnant?”
“No he is not. And you’re not going to get anyone pregnant either. No way.” She shook her head emphatically.
“Mao. Come on. Look at him. He’s like a meter tall with a baby face.”
“I’m a meter and a half. Well, a bit taller, actually.” He hadn’t been a meter tall since he was a teenager, thank you very much.
“He’s a kid. He’s not gonna be knocking anyone up.”
This was confusing. And really, he didn’t see the point of it at all, if no one was having any Itsukis. “I liked the diagrams better,” Shoma said.
“Yes, Dai, let’s get back to diagrams.” Mao pointed at the diagram, her finger landing on something wrinkly. “And this thing covering the penis is a foreskin. You can..." She looked at Dai. “Do things with it?”
Shoma had a question. “Mao, have you ever seen a," what had she called it... “a penis?”
Mao rolled her eyes, Dai laughing next to her. “Yes. Once. And it confirmed that I very much would never like to see another one.”
“I feel like I should be offended,” said Dai.
“Don’t be,” Mao said. “It was an accident. Besides, have you ever seen a vagina?”
“Of course,” he said, crossing his arms over his chest.
“And being born doesn’t count.”
“Anyway, Shoma. We covered penis stuff.” Dai glanced at Mao. “Do you know what a vagina is?”
2.2 – Paris, 9:59pm
“But you see, you have to start with foreplay. The brain is the biggest sexual organ in the human body. Make them feel good,” Stéphane said, his hands fluttering, “and then make love to them.”
“Or you could, you know, just suck his dick,” Johnny said.
“Only if you’re uncouth,” hissed Stéphane. “I will not raise Yuzuru to be a bad lover. Sensuality is key.”
Johnny leaned towards Yuzuru, one hand on the side of his mouth. “Suck. His. Dick.”
Stéphane sighed, pressing his fingers to his temple. “I’m disappointed in you, Johnny. Besides, we haven’t even covered the basics of safety. We’re athletes. Our body is our weapon. You must keep it in good condition.” He produced a banana and a foil packet from somewhere behind him, ripping open the foil square. “Now, when you roll on a condom, you have to pinch the tip.”
“Of the condom,” Johnny said, earning a harsh look from Stéphane. “What? Just clarifying! Well, or the nip. You can pinch the nipple, too, if you like. If they like.”
Yuzuru looked between the two of them. This wasn’t answering his questions at all. “I’m just here because Javi say to ask you what ‘head’ was, when Tracy not explain to me. He say you would know.”
“Well, clearly Johnny knows all about head,” Stéphane said. “Though which head he thinks with, I’m starting to question.”
4.0 – China, 1:32pm
“No, no, I’m not doing this by the rink. We’re going in here!” Wenjing said brightly, shoving open the door to a conference room. Cong shuffled in after her, followed by Misha, leading Boyang with a hand on his back.
“Look, I can look this stuff up. You really don’t have to teach me,” Boyang said. It seemed unnecessary, and probably embarrassing.
“Oh, no. We’re going to.” Misha’s eyes glinted.
“Now,” Wenjing said, standing at the head of the table. “Here are some handouts.”
1.3 – Japan, 12:40pm
“And,” Dai said, wrapping up his explanation, “is what a vagina is. A fancy hole. You can put things in it.”
“Well, if she wants you to,” Mao added.
“Like fingers.” Dai added, one hand on his chin. “Or... marbles?”
“I mean, you could, right? Fit them up there?”
“Well... probably, actually.” She turned to Dai, saying something about marbles and volume. Math words. He didn’t really care about math, if that’s what they were talking about now.
Shoma pulled out his phone, opening up his game. This seemed like a lot of discussion, and he didn’t care about marbles anyway. Video games were better. He’d only gotten halfway through one battle when Dai reached out and took his phone.
“And girls, they have lots of things they feel good. Boobs feel... nice? I think?”
Mao nodded enthusiastically. “Yes. Very, very good.”
“And there’s a clitoris..." Dai said, staring at the diagram. “Somewhere.”
4.1 – China, 2:18pm
“Well done, dude!” Misha looked up, having finished grading Boyang’s worksheets. “Perfect score.”
“It’s not that hard. You guys had a good PowerPoint.” Wenjing preened at Boyang’s words, reaching out to high-five Cong. “Anyway, I had a question.”
“So. Did you guys..." Cong backed away from Wenjing, shaking his head, but Boyang continued, “do it together?”
Wenjing slapped a hand over her mouth, coughing violently. Misha dropped his pen. Cong waved his hands in an X-shape.
From where he sat, Boyang could see Cong crossing his fingers behind his back.
2.3 – Paris, 10:20pm
“Look, I don’t know why you think you’re the expert on this topic. Which one of us was able to bring someone to climax thirteen times in one night?” Stéphane shouted. Yuzuru looked up from his phone, where he’d been looking up half of the words they’d used. He had no idea, frankly, what they were talking about anymore. Though he was pretty sure he’d figured out what “head” was, at this point, and why it was so important.
“Well, sorry,” Johnny snapped back, waving his hands in mock surrender. “Didn’t realize someone was still trying to make up for Torino.”
5.0 – Canada, 6:41pm
Patrick sighed. He’d been hearing all day from Javier about the crazy and probably very factually inaccurate lessons Yuzuru had gotten. While he didn’t understand how anyone could make it to the age of twenty-three without figuring this shit out, let alone someone who’d been at the Olympic Village twice, he almost felt bad for the kid. Certainly none of the people he’d asked were any good as teachers. In fact, he was sure he could do better.
He turned back to Scott and Tessa, who were cleaning up after dinner. “Hey, guys, think we could teach sex ed?”
“Oh, definitely,” Tessa said. She folded her dishrag over her arm, then turned around. “I can cover anatomy, Scott can cover safety, and you can cover the dangers of internet porn.”
“One time, Tessa. One. Time.” He was going to pay for that interview for the rest of his life, jeez.
“One time, and you brought it up on fucking television.”
“How hard can it be?” asked Scott from where he stood by the stove, scooping food into Tupperware containers. “People have bits, and some people have boobs. Boobs are nice.”
“They’re called breasts, Scott. We have to be informative.”
Patrick uncorked a bottle of wine. “But none of the Canadian kids need sex ed. Which is good, I guess. They aren’t idiots. But still. I think it would be fun, you know?” He saw Scott creeping up behind Tessa, bowl in his hand. “What would you say, Scott?”
Scott started stirring the bowl with a spoon. “I’d say that this is what good puss—”
Tessa slapped him with a dishrag.
+1.0 – Canada, 11:24am
“Brian. Yuna Kim is here.”
Brian put down the schedules they'd been reviewing. “What is she doing here?”
“I don’t know,” Tracy said, “but she went straight to Jun and pulled him aside. I think they’re talking in Korean now.”
Gabby ran into the office. “Brian, Tracy, Yuna’s here to talk to Jun about that.”
“Gabby, what on earth is ‘that.’”
“That! The thing neither of you wanted to talk to Yuzuru about, and he asked some of the other skaters, and now everyone is getting lessons!”
Tracy sighed, closing her eyes. All of this drama because Brian didn’t want to go through fifteen minutes of embarrassment. He was almost as immature as the kids, she would swear to god. “Well, did it look bad?”
Tapping a finger on her arm, Gabby paused. “Honestly, not really. She handed him a book and they went into the side room.” She looked behind her briefly before turning back to face them. “Oh, they’re out.”
“Well, would you look at that,” Brian said, staring out the window. Tracy walked over and watched Yuna give Jun a short hug before walking back out.
“She seems to have handled it just fine.”