A week had gone by, and Max found herself in Mike's basement again, enjoying a few final quiet hours, just the two of them. They had gotten good at compartmentalizing their feelings, keeping things as a proper friendship when they needed to. It would become critically important once El and the rest of their friends returned and things had to go back to the way they used to be. At the very least, they were far more comfortable with each other and that former tension would no longer hang in the air when everyone got together.
After their last night together, Max's mother had become suspicious and set out a new rule that no boys were to be over at the house unless she was home. They were never sure just what tipped her off, whether she had seen or heard something, or if a neighbor had spotted Mike leaving. In any case, her house was off limits during the day and Mike's basement was no better. Karen and Holly were home the entire day, so there was no chance of things happening there, either.
They sat around the table playing Gin Rummy, Max thoroughly destroying Mike and quite proud of herself. At last count, he owed her nearly three dollars; not a large sum, to be sure, but it was more the principle of the thing. At this rate, he would be funding her next few trips to the arcade in full. If he was honest with himself, his heart wasn't really in the game, and he could see a similar distant look on Max's face. El would be back tomorrow, and they had already agreed they needed to spend the day apart to try and get their minds back into a proper place before she was there. It had been an amazing few weeks and they were sad to see it come to an end, though they had known that was the deal from the beginning. Mike couldn't deny the feelings he had from Max, something much stronger than a regular friendship. He tried to justify in his head how he could be feeling it for two people, and how to keep one or the other from getting hurt as a result.
"Mike?" Karen yelled down the stairs.
"Yeah?" he answered, abruptly pulled out of his thoughts.
"Holly and I have to run out for a minute. Your dad forgot his lunch again and we have to run it over to his office. We'll be back in 15 minutes or so, and then I can fix you guys lunch."
"Okay mom," Mike yelled back, his mind already shifting into overdrive as she pulled the basement door shut.
"Max, I need you," Mike blurted out, looking back across the table.
She was taken aback by the abrupt shift, blushing a little at his admission.
"El's back tomorrow, and I have no idea what happens next, with you and I, with El and I, with any of this. Something has happened between us that goes deeper than any of us intended, and I don't know what happens with that either. All I know is I need to hold you in my arms one more time, to let you know just how amazing you are, and how much you mean to me."
"Well, how can a girl refuse an offer like that?" she feigned, desperately trying to hide how much she needed him, too. "What did you have in mind? We don't have very long." They could already hear Karen's station wagon starting up in the driveway, so they knew the clock was ticking.
"Could I eat you out again?" Mike asked, the request more blunt than he would normally be, knowing he could probably bring her to an enjoyable climax in time.
"What about you?" she asked, not sure there would be time to do something for him as well.
"It's alright," Mike admitted, "if I can do something one last time for you, that's enough for me."
"You're really going to have to stop being so sweet to me if we're going to have any hope of getting over each other." she teased.
She thought for a moment and decided on something that should work for both of them.
"Drop your pants and lay on the couch," she ordered, already getting excited and taking control of the situation.
Letting her shorts and panties drop to the floor, Max came over to join him, pleased to see his shaft already rising to the occasion. Mike was puzzled, knowing there wasn't time for what she seemed to have planned. He then felt like an idiot when she settled on top of him, her face near his cock and her damp pussy close to his waiting mouth. He wanted to kick himself for not thinking of it straight off.
Not wanting to waste another minute, Mike reached up and took hold of her ass, a cheek in each hand, and pulled her down to his mouth. Max let out a deep sigh as Mike's hot tongue began to slip between her folds. Eager to return to the favor, she took hold of his cock and gave the whole length a lick, starting at the base and swirling around the head as she she reached the top. This time it was Mike's turn to let out a satisfied moan as she wrapped her lips over the head and slurped his girth into her mouth. She sank as low as she could without gagging and then pulled back, working the full length of his shaft with her tongue as she did so.
Mike worked over Max's pussy with wild abandon, first running the firm tip of his tongue along her full length, starting at her clit and nearly reaching the tight rosebud of her ass before starting forward again. He would alternate long, slow laps across her engorged nub, followed by quicker, swirling flicks. Sliding one hand around so he could bring his fingers into play, Mike worked over her clit with his thumb while plunging his tongue into the tight confines of her vagina.
Unexpectedly hitting just the right rhythm, Mike brought Max to a quick orgasm. She came hard, grinding her pussy against his face and glazing him with her tangy juices. He switched to long, slow strokes of his tongue to let the moment go on as long as possible for her. Max lost herself for a moment, moaning around Mike's cock, still buried in her mouth.
Finally recovering, she pulled off and asked, "Please. Keeping going. Again?"
All to happy to comply, Mike dove back in, repeating his former circuit around her most sensitive bits. Max resumed sucking the length of Mike's cock, licking him slowly then dragging tight lips from the base to the top. Her head bobbed up and down his shaft in time with her own pounding heartbeat. She could hear Mike's breath coming more rapid than before, his hips rising to meet the fall of her lips.
"Max!" Mike moaned into her pussy, unable to tear himself away. "Close."
A few more thrusts of his hips, driving his cock deep into Max's lips, and Mike spilled over. As she held tight to the base of his cock, keeping him from thrusting too hard and choking her, Mike fired shot after shot of hot cum into her mouth, which she swallowed just fast enough to make way for the next blast. The sensation sent her over again, harder than before, squirting her juices across his face.
They lay panting for a few seconds before Max swung herself around, planting her lips on Mike's. He could taste his own cum on her tongue, and he knew she could taste herself on his. For a quiet minute, they just lay in each others embrace.
"Whatever happens, thank you." Mike began. "I wouldn't trade these last few weeks for anything. I need you to know you mean a lot to me, way more than I ever thought possible, and I'll do everything I can to make sure this all turns out alright."
"Thank you too, Mike." she said, nuzzling her face into the crook of his neck. "I'm glad you called and asked me to that movie. These last few weeks, you've taught me a lot about myself, and maybe someday I can actually explain how, but for now just know that this time with you has meant the world to me."
Mike pulled her close, his arms warmly around her, certain this was the last time he would be able to do so. As Max let her mind drift and settle, Mike kept a cautious ear open. When he heard his mother's car pull into the driveway, they shared one final kiss, long and slow, before getting up from the couch and pulling their clothes back on. By the time Karen hollered down the stairs that she and Holly were home, they were settled at the table again, Max ready to win the rest of Mike's arcade money.
The next day, after two long months of not seeing each other, El was back in Mike's arms. She would be staying with Max while she was in town, but Karen and Mike were still the ones to meet her at the bus station when she came in on the afternoon run from Chicago. Mike stood outside the station doors, watching the flood of passengers making their way out to the parking lot, when a familiar voice rose over the crowd.
"Mike!" El squealed, running toward him, dropping her bag at the last minute and nearly knocking him to the ground as she threw her arms around him.
Their lips met, eager to make the connection so long denied. They parted only a moment before coming together again. Their hearts overflowed and the whole world seemed to melt away around them as they held one another. Nothing felt as right, nor the world as complete, as when they were wrapped up in each other's arms.
"I missed you, so much," Mike breathed when their lips finally separated.
"I missed you, too," El said with a smile, pulling Mike tighter.
"Alright you two," Karen teased, calling the back to reality. "Ready to head home?"
Mike blushed a deep crimson, having forgotten his mom was there. He reached down and gathered El's duffel, taking her hand in his own and started off toward the car. Somewhere in the back of his mind, he knew she would ask him about Max and whether they had done anything about her offer, but he did his best to suppress those thoughts for the moment. Right now, he was back with the girl he loved and he wanted to savor every moment.
Back at the house, El excitedly told him everything about the program. She passed him a whole stack of typed pages - everything she had written in in the last few weeks - and asked if he would read them all and let her know what he thought. Mike readily agreed, intrigued by the bits and pieces she had told him during the nightly chats. She got to stay through dinner, but then it came time to walk her over to Max's house. While he would have much preferred her staying with him for the two weeks she got to spend in Hawkins, he had a feeling Joyce had arranged things this way to keep a limit on what she had to know was occurring by this point.
Max met them at the door with a smile, overjoyed herself to have her best friend back, even for a little while. As El pulled her into a hug, Max's eyes met Mike's, and a brief, wistful look passed between them. They both knew this was going to be hard, going back to the way things used to be. After giving the pair a minute to say a private goodnight on the porch, Max helped El bring her bag inside as Mike started down the front steps and off toward home.
They put El's things in the guest room - in actuality Billy's old room, but redecorated to be more suitable for visitors and to clear some of the painful memories. After changing into pajamas, they settled down in Max's bed, talking for several hours and catching up as the sky darkened outside. At one point, Max turned out the lights, knowing sleep would overtake them soon enough. A few minutes later, El realized Max had drifted off, and she lay back with a smile. She was back among her friends, in the place she belonged. They Byers were her family, and she could never thank them enough for taking her in, and being so patient and kind with her, but Hawkins was still the only place that felt like home.
She lay for a long time in thought, listening to Max's slow, rhythmic breathing, and realized there was something she needed to do. Slipping silently out of bed, careful not to disturb her friend, El pulled on her shoes and slipped open the window. She looked down at what she was wearing - sleep-shorts and a tank-top with no bra - and decided it was probably fine for going out in the dark of night. She followed the all-too-familiar route to Mike's and was happy to find the house dark and still. With practiced silence, she twisted open the lock on the front door and slipped inside, securing it again as she stealthily made her way up the stairs and down the hall to Mike's room.
Stepping out of her shoes, El crawled into Mike's bed and curled against his warmth, brushing away the chill of the night.
"You came," he whispered, wrapping his arms around her.
She hadn't given him a heads up like she often did, but he still had no doubt she would find her way to him that night. He had waited up, watching the clock slowly click past 10:00, 10:30, and 11:00, but he had known she would be there eventually.
"I missed you, alright," she confessed. "I've only been here a few hours, and I already know how much I'm going to miss you when I have to go back."
"I know," Mike admitted. "This gets harder every time." Then he added, "But like we keep saying, each time is one less time we have to say goodbye, until we can be together for good."
She smiled at the thought. It was still a couple years off, but they had already talked about college and the fact that wherever they went, they were going together. They were getting apartment together, and no one was ever going to keep them apart again. Her lips found their way to his, her fingers tracing gentle lines across his chest. She needed him, in a physical sense to be sure, but the longing went deeper than that. He completed her in a way she couldn't ever put to words, but one that made her feel safe and whole.
Their kisses slowly grew in passion, lips parting and tongues passing gently along one another. Mike relieved El of her top and her shorts, surprised to find no panties beneath. She blushed in the darkness, knowing even when she had gotten dressed for bed over at Max's that she would be making this trip. El helped Mike out of his boxers, a pair she had already decided she was taking with her when she left. She already had several pairs, and it was a guilty pleasure of hers, wearing them in the night when she missed him. Sure, she had a few stolen t-shirts as well, but something about the boxers felt dangerous.
Laying in the cool air of his room, illuminated by the soft blue glow of his clock, Mike gazed lovingly down at El. In one smooth motion he slipped inside her, sinking deep and eliciting a moan from El, which she contained with a bite to her lower lip. They would find time later for noisier, more impassioned intimacy, but for now they both knew they had to keep quiet so they didn't raise his parent's suspicion. Beyond sex, they craved the connection, a moment all too brief, where they could be as close to one another as possible. They made love with long, slow strokes, each one sending charges running through them. El came quickly the first time, her pussy milking Mike's cock as the feelings exploded in her abdomen, and Mike continued his well-practiced thrusts, helping drag out the moment and then begin pulling her up the hill again.
She wrapped her legs tightly around Mike's waist, pulling him down to her, pulling herself up to him. She kissed along his jaw, his neck, his collarbone. She nibbled lightly at his ear, pulling moans of his own from his lips. Her hands on his back, she could feel each muscle tensing and releasing beneath her fingers as he thrust. His breathing changed, quicker and shallow, and knew he was getting close. She shifted her hips, getting just the right contact against her clit, feeling her own orgasm deliciously close.
"El!" Mike breathed, barely a whisper as he pushed back against her.
That first warm, thick shot of cum splashed in her pussy, coating her cervix and sending shivers up her spine. A second stream, bigger and more forceful than the first, hit her again, beginning to fill the space and squeeze its way out. A third shot, accompanied by a deep, sustained thrust, sent her over the edge and El came again, hard. She pressed her face deep into Mike's neck, moaning softly as the pleasure raced through her.
"I love you, El," Mike whispered into the darkness, pulling her close as their breathing slowed.
"I love you too, Mike", she answered softly, curled up against him.
His arms were safe and warm; Mike Wheeler was her home, and she needed to ensure that would always be the case. She had a question - one she knew at least part of the answer for - and she had to make sure he could be trusted.
"Can I ask you something?" El began, her fingers drawing slow circles on his chest.
"Always," Mike answered, somehow knowing what was about to come. Despite it being her idea, he still had a sinking fear it had all been some elaborate test he had failed miserably. All the same, he and Max had agreed they would both be completely honest with her and deal with whatever fallout might come.
"A few weeks ago, I gave you and Max permission to help each other out. Did you?"
Mike swallowed hard, took a deep breath, and nodded. "Yes. We did."
"Once? Or more?" she asked, still tracing circles with her fingers, drifting lower to his stomach.
"More than once. Three." he admitted.
"Can you tell me about them?" she asked, no hint of jealousy or anger in her voice.
So Mike started in, describing that first night in the basement, the tentative first kisses and the oral that followed. The sex that turned out to be Max's first, and how he had brought her upstairs to his bed, explaining how her first time deserved to be somewhere better than the couch. His cock betrayed him, stiffening again at the memories as Mike recounted their time together.
"What about the second time?" El asked, her heart beating faster, knowing he was about to tell her things she hadn't seen. He explained their second encounter, and the phone calls that had set them off on that course, both needing some comfort. In the middle of his description, Mike was surprised when El straddled his waist and sank herself down on his cock, slowly riding him as he continued his description.
"And the third?" she asked, her breath already quickening.
Mike was shocked, not only that she was apparently okay with what had happened, but that it seemed to excite her as well. Still, he hoped their final time together wouldn't change her feelings about the whole thing. Forcing himself to remain honest, Mike included the fact that they both wanted one last time together, knowing it would all be coming to an end and admitting some kind of feeling had grown between them that neither could explain.
El listened closely, picturing the scene as he described it. Mike laying on the couch, his cock standing at attention, his face buried in Max's dripping pussy. Max laying atop Mike, her lips wrapped around his shaft, her head bobbing along its length. Her cunt spasming as Mike's tongue worked over her sensitive clitoris. His cock erupting its hot cum in her mouth, effortlessly swallowing each shot.
Already feeling close, El planted her hands on Mike's chest, leaning forward and grinding her hips to draw out the pleasure.
"Mike," she gasped, her body flooding with pleasure as she came again, her sweet juices flooding out, the pulsing walls of her vagina pulling Mike quickly toward his own finish.
"El. El, I'm there," Mike whispered, face flushing as he came hard, flooding her pussy with another round of cum.
They pulled each other in a tight embrace, moving against each other and dragging out the exquisite moment as long as they could.
"I love you, Mike," she said again, planting a series of slow kisses up his neck. "Thank you for telling me the truth."
"I love you too, El. Friends don't lie, right?"
She smiled, pressing her lips to his. The old saying still held the same weight for them it always had, and she truly appreciated his honesty. Mike wrapped her in his arms, holding her in that way only he could, that way that let her know she was safe, and loved, and that everything was going to be alright. Glancing at the clock, she let out a sigh; as bad as she wanted to stay, she needed to go before anyone noticed her missing.
"I have to get back to Max's." she said, a hint of regret in her voice.
"I know," he said with a resigned sigh. "Can I walk you back, at least?"
El gave a shake of her head. "I'll be alright. You know you'd never manage to sneak back in quiet enough."
She knew him all too well, so he lay back with a contented smile and watched as she pulled her clothes back on. In the dim glow of the room, he could just make out the smooth, gentle curve of her hips, the beautiful swell of her chest, as she pulled everything back on, then knelt to slip on her shoes. Coming over to the bed, she gave him one last kiss.
"I'll see you tomorrow," she whispered. "I love you."
"I love you too, El. Welcome home."
Only after she had gone, did Mike fish around on the floor for his boxers. Not finding them, he flipped on the light, only to realize his shorts were nowhere to be found.
"Naughty girl," he thought with a grin, realizing El had stolen yet another pair.
Safely outside, and the front door locked behind her, El glanced down at herself in the moonlight. The edges of the boxers peaked out under her sleep-shorts, but it wasn't too obvious. She wanted to wear them tonight, but she knew she would have to slip back out of them in the morning before Max saw; her best friend would subject her to no end of teasing if she found out about El's habit of wearing the stolen underwear. She crossed the few blocks quickly, sneaking around to the back of Max's house and in through the window. Everything was still silent and dark as she entered the room, slipping out of her shoes and sliding back into bed. She was actually feeling just a little proud of how stealthy she could be.
"Feel better?" Max asked quietly.
"Damn," she thought, realizing she hadn't been as stealthy as she hoped.
"Yes," El admitted, blushing in the dark. "Sorry."
"El, it's okay if you want to go over and see him. I understand." Max reassured her. "Just tell me before you go, so I can cover for you if mom checks on us."
"Thanks." El whispered with a smile. "I will."
El thought for a minute, deciding whether now was the right time to quiz Max. She had been planning to do it in the morning, but realized there was no point in waiting. Mike had told her everything, keeping perfectly honest about what had happened with Max after she made the offer. Now, she needed to know if Max could be trusted to be just as open and honest.
"Max, can I ask you something?"
She could practically feel the redhead tense up next to her, knowing what El was about to ask.
"Did you and Mike take my offer? Did you two help each other out?"
Max knew there was no point in denying anything, and she had promised Mike she would be honest if El asked.
"Yes. We did. A few times." she admitted.
"Could you tell me about it?" she asked, unsure why there was suddenly a hint of shyness in her voice; perhaps a little guilty at how excited the whole thing made her.
"Sure," Max agreed, starting in with their first time, down in the basement.
She described the gentle kisses, and how surprised she was when Mike offered to take care of her, first. She complemented El on training Mike so well in how to please a girl.
"Actually, that's all him, he just figured all that out for himself," El confided. "I was a little surprised, too."
Max smiled, continuing with her description, trying her best not to leave out any details. As she listened, El found herself getting wet again, even though she had already heard the story barely an hour before. Trying her best not to draw attention, she slipped a hand down the front of her shorts, under Mike's boxers, and traced a finger slowly along her lips, coating it in her slick juices.
Max went on, confessing how Mike had taken her up to his room, wanting her first time to be something special and how it had actually been better than she ever figured loosing her virginity would be.
"What about the next time?" El asked, doing her best to hide the quickening of her breath.
"El, are you touching yourself?" Max asked, a little surprised but also oddly aroused.
"Yeah," El sheepishly admitted. "Sorry, I just couldn't help it. I can stop, if you want me to."
"No, that's alright," Max whispered. "I don't mind."
"You can too," El offered. "I don't mind either. If you want to, I mean."
Max thought about it, and decided they were already crossing so many other lines, why not this one too. In truth, she had already masturbated once that night, after realizing El had snuck out to be with Mike. As badly as she wished it were her sneaking over to see him, she was somehow still happy for them, and had cum hard picturing the two of them together.
Slipping a hand down the front of her shorts, Max continued with her tale. Their second time, over at her house, in the very bed the two of them were now laying in. Their final time, a spur of the moment 69 in Mike's basement, desperate for one last moment together.
"El, I'm really sorry if I took things to far," Max apologized. "Mike is just really sweet, and I don't know, he just made me feel safe, and cared for." She had to catch herself, having almost said 'loved' instead of 'cared for.' "I wanted to feel, just for a little while, what you have."
"Max, it's okay, it really is. I meant what I said, how I don't think that was cheating, and I'm not mad about any of it. I promise."
Max lay back with a feeling of relief, her fingers resuming their attack on her pussy. She alternated between tight swirls around her clit and plunging two fingers deep within her tight tunnel. Not knowing what came over her, Max reached out with her free hand and rested it lightly on El's arm, feeling the movements of the other girl's hand as she pleasured her own pussy.
"I can't believe you guys kept going when your mom came home," El whispered, breathless.
"I think it made it better, somehow," Max said, blushing fiercely in the darkness. "I came so hard I could barely see straight."
El's fingers worked frantically, pulling herself over the edge.
"Max," she gasped, her face pulling tight, her whole body vibrating as her fingers coaxed another blissful orgasm out of her inflamed pussy.
Max could feel El's motion through the bed and the realization that her best friend was laying just inches away and coming hard at the description of the things she and Mike had done, sent her crashing over as well.
"Thank you, El," she moaned as juices splashed around her fingers, soaking her shorts. "El, I don't think I can every thank you enough for these last few weeks."
"You're welcome, Max" El whispered with a smile. "Thank you for taking care of Mike. And thank you for telling me the truth."
They lay there in silence, their breath returning to normal. Before long, El heard Max settle into the slow, steady breaths of sleep, her mind and body at peace. El smiled to herself in the darkness, her fingers still toying with her damp pussy. They had told her everything, their stories matched each other, and the things she had seen. They had been candid about the fact that they had gotten more out of the experience than simply getting-off with each other. There had been some feelings there, and that was okay as far as El was concerned. She still knew Max wasn't going to try and steal Mike away. She knew Mike wasn't going to leave her. If they still wanted to be together, with her blessing, she would allow it. But she had some conditions, ones she was certain they would agree too. Tomorrow it would be her turn to lay it all out there, and admit what parts of their story she already knew.
She closed her eyes, a blissful smile on her face, her fingers gently swirling around her clitoris as she drifted off to sleep.