Frank & John, Not Lovers Ch. 03

tagIncest/TabooFrank & John, Not Lovers Ch. 03

Chapter 3
(All characters are at least 18 years of age.)
After lunch, Frank and John cleaned up the kitchen together. Frank was helpful and hard-working, scrubbing the crusted pans and washing at least as many dishes and utensils as John did. At the same time, she acted the buffoon the entire time, just as John remembered her. She had been his best friend for most of his life. She splashed him with water, pretending it was accidental, butt-bumped him when he was in her way, which evidently was most of the time, and kept up a stream of jokes and off-color stories about her friends. The time passed much faster than if he had been cleaning up by himself.
"It's like the last two years never happened," thought John to himself. He was happy that the awkwardness they had both felt only a few short hours ago seemed already to be a distant memory.
"Hey, you wanna play some ball?"
John knew this meant basketball. His stomach, stuffed with food, heaved slightly at the thought. The only sport John truly enjoyed playing was baseball, which was also the only sport he liked watching. Frank not only disliked baseball, she did not consider it a true sport. John recalled they had once had a long debate on the subject. John and Debbie, both avid Brewers fans, took up the pro-baseball side, while Frank took the contrary position. As John recalled, both sides declared victory in the end.
"Sounds great," John said, in answer to Frank's question. He tried to keep his voice bright-sounding even as he considered the soul-crushing pummeling he was about to receive on the unforgiving concrete court.
"Great! Let's go get changed!"
Frank was already wearing proper basketball shorts and shoes, so John assumed she must want to change her top. He, on the other hand, needed to change into his workout clothes and tennis shoes, the closest he could come to wearing proper basketball gear.
On the way back to their respective bedrooms, Frank walked ahead of him by several paces. He noted that Frank did not close her door after she disappeared into her room, even though she was about to change.
"What is it about Frank and doors?" John thought. "Or am I just paying more attention than I used to?"
John closed his own door and made sure it closed fully, pulling the silver metal knob until he heard a telltale click. He did not have any basketball-specific clothes, so instead fished out some tennis shoes, running shorts, and a white t-shirt.
Despite, presumably, having more items of clothing to change, John finished before Frank. He could still hear shuffling noises coming from her room as he departed his own. Figuring he had another minute or so, he returned to the kitchen where had earlier noticed a cooler bag and water bottles. The weather was still sweltering outside and they would need to stay hydrated.
"Even gay girls take a long time to get dressed," John thought, as he filled the bottles with ice and filtered water. Just then, Frank silently materialized in the kitchen, having settled on an outfit at last. For reasons beyond John's comprehension, she had decided to swap out every item of clothing. The white cotton crew socks had been replaced by a pair of green-and-white striped over-the-calf compression socks. Her blue shorts had been swapped for otherwise identical black ones. She had also changed into one of her old practice shirts from the basketball team, a white and green tank top. John could see that she had changed bras as well. The one she had inadvertently exposed during lunch was solid black, whereas this one was charcoal gray. She had even changed shoes, opting for white Air Jordan's over the All Stars.
Frank noted the self-satisfied smirk on John's face and issued a warning, "Don't say it."
"Don't say what?"
"'I thought butch dykes wouldn't take so long to get dressed'," Frank said, lowering her voice an octave, in a surprisingly accurate imitation of John's speech.
"What the fuck, dude," John said, "now you're reading my mind?"
Contrary to his words, John was far from shocked by Frank's display of cousinly telepathy. He burst out laughing, mostly at himself. Frank tried to keep a straight face for a few beats, but then a huge smile broke out on her face. This lead her to consider that she had smiled more, in the scant hours since John's arrival, than she had over the previous seven days. She went over to her chortling cousin, hugged him, and gave him another big wet kiss.
"Why do I keep doing that?" Frank thought. Meanwhile, out loud, she said, "Arright dude let's blow this Popsicle stand." Her mouth was inches from John's ear.
The two cousins left the house to find a court. Because of the sweltering heat, John thought it would be easy to find a court. Surely only Frank could be obsessed enough to want to play basketball in this heat. However, the first court they came to was already occupied with a big group of players. Most of them were tall, well-built, and shirt-less. John felt instantly nervous as he instinctively calculated that any one of them could beat the crap out of him. They also seemed to be experienced players, as far as he could tell.
To John's surprise, Frank showed no sign of being intimidated herself. She waited for the orange ball to go out of bounds, then walked up to one of the taller men during the ensuing break in play. John had noticed this particular player barking out orders to the rest of his team. He was probably the de facto team captain. When the man saw Frank, he broke out into a huge smile. His deep bass voice rang out, "Lil' Frankie!" He put a lot of emphasis on the "e" sound. A few other players echoed back, "Frank-E, Frank-E!"
John, hanging back, was too far away to make out the ensuing conversation, which was conducted at a lower volume. He could, however, see Frank and the captain perform a series of complicated, handshake-like gestures with each other.
"I always mess up those sports handshakes," John thought. He was impressed with Frank's cool, confident demeanor.
Frank walked back. "They're going to be a while," she said, jerking her thumb over her right shoulder to indicate the players. "But I know another court we can check out. There's usually nobody there."
They left the court. Their walk took them down gently curved, tree-lined sidewalks, deeper into the suburban neighborhood. John was completely lost. Each block felt like a mile in the sweltering heat. Both Frank and John were drenched with sweat from head to toe.
After a few minutes of walking, they ran into three young women walking together in the opposite direction. Frank seemed to know them, just as she had known some of the basketball players a few minutes earlier. John automatically estimated each young woman's body measurements, as Frank introduced each in turn. These estimations were easier to make accurately than they usually were. The young womens' clothing was plastered to their bodies. Moreover, there was not much material to plaster. In compensation for the hot weather, they were wearing as little as they could get away with.
The five of them chatted casually for a few minutes. At one point, John cracked a joke about the ass-whipping he was about to receive on the court. This made the rest of the group laugh. Conversation continued for another minute, then the two groups continued on their separate ways.
Once out of earshot of the departing trio of girls, Frank said quizzically, "You didn't seem very nervous." She emphasized the word "seem", making it sound like a question.
John thought Frank was talking about the basketball court. He was still feeling sheepish that he had not accompanied Frank to be introduced to her friends.
"I didn't? I thought I was pretty nervous actually. But I'm glad it didn't seem that way?"
"No really. You seemed pretty cool to me," Frank said.
John's eyebrows scrunched up a bit. "But I was hanging back the whole time."
Now it was Frank's turn to scrunch up her brow. Then her face cleared as she realized that John had misunderstood her. "No dummy, I didn't mean back at the court, I meant just now!"
"Why would I be nervous just now?" John remained confused.
"Hello! Cute girls? The way you described your dating issues I thought you'd turn into, like, a puddle of goo around those chicas!"
John was genuinely mystified. "They were cute?"
"Yeah! Like, what the fuck dude, are you blind?"
"I guess they all looked okay?"
"'Okay'? What do you fuckin' want? They barely had any clothes on, they had cute faces, nice curves, nice boobies. Are you sure you even like girls?"
John realized, too late, that the conversation was turning in a direction he had been hoping to avoid. In truth, the bustiest of the three girls' breasts had been around the size of large apples. He had never been attracted to women unless their tits were somewhat bigger than that, around the size of small cantaloupes.
"I guess I like girls a little more, uh, voluptuous?" John tried, hoping to provide just enough information to answer Frank's question, without triggering an interrogation.
Frank was not buying it. "By 'voluptuous' you mean 'mongo huge tits', right? I think I'm noticing a pattern here Johnnie. Wasn't that girl you tried to ask to the movies … uh, Janey?"
"OK, Jennie. So she had big tits too, amiright?"
John realized how shallow he must be seeming. He felt like a pervert. "I guess the girl with short hair was closest to my type," he said, in the hopes of seeming less obsessive about breasts. He was also hoping to avoid describing Jennie, as it would corroborate Frank's theory perfectly.
"The 'girl with short hair'?" Frank said incredulously, "You mean you don't remember her name?" Frank punched him in the arm.
"At least Frank doesn't sound mad," John thought to himself, with relief. Despite Frank's chiding words and forceful punch, he could tell she was just trying to rib him. To his further relief, she also kept any further questions to herself.
They soon reached the alternate basketball court, and John could see why it was not crowded like the other one had been. This court was in a small park that was dominated by a playground. It had a tiny parking lot. The court was only half-sized, as well. It would suit their pending game of one-on-one, but would be sub-optimal for a real game.
"Arright, bitch, prepare for some ass whompin'!" Frank shouted and dribbled her way onto the court.
Sadly, for John's ego at least, Frank's prediction was entirely accurate. What followed was a series of humiliating losses. Frank had been one of the best players on the junior varsity basketball team in high school. She had also been team captain, and, had she stuck with it, would most likely have gone on to be a star player on the varsity squad.
John and Frank played three games of twenty-one. John lost one game by a margin of seventeen, and fared worse in the other two. With frequent water breaks, the games took an hour, by the end of which they were both exhausted. John did not feel up for walking home yet, so he suggested they drink what remained of the water he had packed. The freezer bag had kept the bottles cold despite the muggy weather.
Towards the center of the park there was a low hill with a big, shady ash tree at the top. John figured it was around twenty-five feet in diameter. He headed for the plentiful shady area at the base of the tree with Frank padding noiselessly behind him. The shade provided welcome relief after the hour they had spent playing in direct sunlight. John lay down on the grass with his water bottle, and Frank slid down next to them. They were shoulder to shoulder, and their completely soaked arms and thighs were touching. "She's got no sense of personal space," John reflected. With almost anyone else he would have found this behavior annoying, but not with her.
Frank ribbed John about his basketball skills, or rather lack thereof, for a while. Conversation then drifted into a number of tangents, such as the best local coffee shops, Frank's latest musical interests, and a few of the movies John had recently seen, including a documentary about a controversial Egyptian environmental advocacy group. Then they fell into a companionable silence.
Frank was just about to fall asleep when John surprised her with a question, "Hey Frank, how come you don't have any BO?"
"What?" Frank said.
"BO. I just realized something had seemed funny to me since we lay down here," John explained. "Here we are, coated in more sweat than, like, anyone's ever been coated with in like the history of humankind. And I smell basically … nothing. Do you have some kind of like magic sweat glands or somethin'?"
Frank looked thoughtful. "No … I actually know for a fact I have pretty strong BO, because all my exes frickin' told me so," she said. "And by 'told me', what I really mean is if I tried to go anywhere near them after workout, they'd be like,", here Frank raised her voice an octave, "'Bitch get in the shower!'"
"That's weird," John said. "So why can't I smell anything?"
Frank looked quizzical and said, "Now that you mention it, I can't smell your body odor either." Several beats later, she added, "Here, take off your shirt and raise your arm."
John removed his sodden exercise shirt with some difficulty as the damp material clung to his skin, resisting his efforts to lift it over his head. He then raised his arm over his head. Frank stuck her face in his armpit, almost, but not quite, touching the hairs there with the tip of her nose. She inhaled deeply, held her breath, then pulled back and exhaled. Her face was expressionless. John put his shirt back on.
"Don't smell like much to me," she said. "Now you do me."
Frank raised her arm as John had. She did not need to remove her shirt since she was wearing a tank top. John maneuvered until his nose was mere millimeters from the center of her armpit. He took a substantial whiff. "Nothing for me either," he said.
"Hmmm," Frank thought to herself, "now that's unexpected!"
To John, she said, "Try seeing what it tastes like?"
John was both shocked and excited by her request. After a moment, his excitement won out. He was not going to pass up the opportunity to, essentially, French kiss his beautiful cousin's bare wet skin. He inclined his head forward once more. Frank's perfectly hairless armpit, lacking even the faintest trace of stubble, was slick with sweat. John extended his wide tongue and licked the smooth indentation from top to bottom. He lapped up approximately one teaspoon of liquid. Many years later, John reflected that this single interaction was to drastically alter the course of both of their lives. Neither of them could have realized this at the time.
"How's it taste?" Frank asked.
John marveled at Frank's tone of voice; it was so clinical sounding! There was no hint of either discomfort or sexual interest. By contrast, John's body reacted as it had earlier in the day. After licking up her sweat his penis swelled uncontrollably. It was even slightly painful.
"It really doesn't taste like much," John said truthfully. "Mostly neutral, like warm water, with just a hint of a sort of … sweet taste I guess."
"So we've just got some kinda compatible biology or something?" Frank mused. John could see her face adopt a thoughtful expression. He wondered what she might be thinking about. She had never, in all the time they had spent together over the years, seemed even slightly attracted to him. He remained certain she was not thinking about sex or romance now. But beyond that, he had no idea what her curious look could possibly mean.
In actual fact, John was correct in his one, limited, conclusion. Frank had had no sexual reaction to the physical contact from her cousin's tongue. If an attractive woman had done the same thing, her reaction would have been different. Her vagina would have become instantly wet with arousal. In this instance, she did not even need to check down there to know that her genitalia remained bone dry, beyond perhaps some incidental moisture from the day's exertions. Frank loved John more than almost anyone in the world, but in a strictly platonic way. She had never met any man she found attractive, and John was no exception. Frank was, however, thinking about sexual activities. Had John somehow intuited the precise idea that was forming in her mind, he probably would have fainted on the spot.
John lay back once more in the grass and stared up into the fading blue sky. He was feeling pleasantly overwhelmed by the day's events. He let his mind wander and hoped that his stiff penis would go limp soon. Frank also lay back, lost in her own internal machinations. The two friends lay together until the sun began to dip below the horizon.
"Hey, let's take a selfie!" Frank said, out of nowhere. In the fading light, the two friends stood up and put their heads together. Their cheeks were touching.
"Co-jack!" Frank said and took a photo with her smartphone. She uploaded it to Instagram using the message, "#bff iz back in taown!" She tagged John's account. John looked down at the notification that popped up on his phone. He felt a warm glow suffuse his chest when he saw that she had used the phrase "BFF" to describe him. It certainly described how he felt about her.
Then they walked home together in silence. Upon arrival, back at the house, Frank stalked into the kitchen, fished around in some drawers that John could not see, and returned with a large yellow notepad. She handed it to John; it was a hand-written list of tasks that Debbie had left for him. These tasks, in principle, would compensate for the free room and board that she was providing to John.
Frank said that Debbie had referred the contents of the notepad a "honeydew" list. Frank's amused expression indicated that she found that term hilarious for some reason. John had only heard the word "honeydew" used in the context of the melons; he did not understand what Frank found so humorous. In any case, the "honeydew" list was long, extending over two full letter-sized pages. Some of the tasks were daily ones like cooking meals (two per day, at least five times per week). Others were big, one-time jobs like fixing cracks in the cement walkway leading up to the house, redoing the landscaping in both front and back yards, fixing the garage door, fixing broken or outdated electrical outlets, replacing the flaky dishwasher, insulating the garage, and so forth.
"Now I'm starting to see why Debbie's letting me stay here for free," John said wryly.
Frank said earnestly, "Oh yeah! I almost forgot! Mom forgot to write this part down before she left, so she texted me from Toronto. She said she knows the list is like super long but she doesn't expect you to do all of that stuff right away. She said you can spread it out over the next three years even."
John was too stunned to say anything at first. He had assumed he would be able to crash with them for six months at most. Even with his agreement to do work around the house, that duration had seemed like it would be an imposition. Now Debbie was implying that she would put him up for the rest of his college career, without him even having to ask! John felt an overwhelming sense of relief. The last few months had been more stressful than he had realized, with the uncertainty about where he would be able to continue his studies and how he would get by financially. He started to cry. It was the first time in years.
Frank said nothing and gave John a tight bear hug. She rubbed his back and shoulders firmly. He could feel her breasts pushing against his pectorals but, for once, this did not provoke an erection.
"Sorry I'm such a mess." John's voice was muffled by her shoulder. "I guess it's just been a rough year. Especially the last copula months. And I can't believe how nice you and Debbie are being. I feel like such a leech."

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