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What a great time to be alive

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“What a great time to be alive” Patroclus thought when he accidentally bumped into Achilles while striding down the halls of high school. He was clutching his books, keeping his head low to try and avoid any eye contact with the athlete jocks who were always bullying him for his nerdy glasses and oversized, ugly jumpers. He had no time to process what was happening, until he felt a hand steady him on his feet and a sweet voice apologizing.

“Sorry, bro. I didn’t watch where I was going.” The bulky, blonde hair guy told him with a shy smile tugging on his plump lips. Patroclus was lost for words and tried not to make a fool out of himself, so he just uttered a rushed “ok” before quickly taking the books that the god-looking guy had gathered for him from the ground.

Patroclus was beating himself up all the way to class for acting like a complete jerk. That was the first time he ever spoken (if mumbling an “ok” is considered talking) to Achilles.

“What a great time to be alive” Achilles thought as he caught a glimpse of Patroclus with his nose buried in a book and a fork idly twirling pasta on his right hand. When Achilles had bumped into Patroclus he was caught off guard with the way he acted, but he was so intrigued with the shy, nerdy boy in his math class that he had been checking out for the past semester. So, when he “accidentally” bumped into him, he caught a better look of him, making his heart skip a beat.

It was spring and the weather was warm enough, so during lunch break, everyone preferred the benches outside in the fields rather than the blunt looking cafeteria inside the school premises. Achilles was playing rugby and he was almost hit by the ball while he was staring at Patroclus.

“Hey, yo, Achilles. Are you still playing, dude?” Odysseus shouted from the field across. Achilles caught the ball and returned back to the game, making a mental note to find a way and get closer to the curly-haired boy reading poetry during lunch.

“What a great time to be alive” Patroclus thought when Achilles popped out of nowhere and was punching Agamemnon and his gang. Patroclus was walking in the parking lot, backpack slouched on his left shoulder, when Menelaus shouted over to him and before he could even respond, he was punched in the face and dragged in behind a wall.

“Not even gonna defend yourself, Menoitides, huh?” Agamemnon spat in his face while landing a blow on his stomach making Patroclus wince in pain.

“Maybe you should fuck right off.” Everyone stopped looking at the source of the voice. Patroclus was dropped to the ground, clutching his sides, while trying to take breaths. Everything hurt. Even breathing.

“Pelides, my dude. Did you come to join us?” Agamemnon cocked an eyebrow.

Achilles chuckled taking a step towards him. They were eye level.

“Oh, I see. Fags taking care of each other. I get it.” Agamemnon barked a laugh holding his hands in defence.

Achilles’ reply came in punches while everyone else from Agamemnon’s gang came to his side ready to defend him. Too bad for them, because Achilles was more strong than any of them, so they quickly scrambled off with Agamemnon throwing empty threats.

“Are you ok?” Achilles helped Patroclus back to his feet. Although Patroclus was getting dizzy from the pain, he caught a glimpse of Achilles hair glistening under the sun that was getting hotter. Or that’s what Patroclus thought.

“Yeah.” He lied, not knowing what else to say.

“Do you have a ride home?” Achilles asked and Patroclus shook his head. “I’m driving you home.” It was a statement and not a question.

Patroclus tried to say that it was ok and that he could handle walking home but Achilles brushed him off, as he helped him walk all the way to his car.

The ride was silent only with Patroclus giving Achilles directions to his home. Patroclus could sense that the tension in the car was heavy. He caught a glimpse of Achilles’ eyes on the rear view mirror and he could see how angry and tensed he was.

“It’s this one.” Patroclus pointed his finger to the house in the corner.

Achilles pulled over in front of Patroclus house. Patroclus was almost out of the door when Achilles touched his arm, making him turn around to look at him.

Achilles didn’t say anything for a couple of seconds. “Take care.” He said and Patroclus nodded, slamming the car door after him.

“What a great day to be alive” Achilles thought when he spotted Patroclus the next day at math class. He approached him and took the seat beside him as it was empty like every day.

“How are you feeling?” Achilles asked a slight smile on his lips.

Patroclus cleared his throat. “Better.” He gave him an awkward smile. It was an improvement from the rushed answers he usually gave him. He was always so nervous around people, especially those who he was crushing on.

Achilles nodded, turning his head towards the teacher who was making his way to the board. It was unusual of Achilles to get this shy, but Patroclus was making him feel emotions he hadn’t thought he would ever have for another guy. But he was fine with it.

The class was boring and Achilles was losing interest. He turned his head towards Patroclus who was scribbling down notes with his tongue out and his glasses half way through his nose. He subconsciously smiled at the image, and that’s when he decided to act.

“What a great day to be alive” Patroclus thought as he tried on a T-shirt but quickly discarding it on the floor, and searched for a new one.

It had been a week ever since Achilles had beaten up Agamemnon and the rest of his pathetic crowd, and ever since Achilles had been at Patroclus’ side. The next day after the incident, Achilles ate lunch with him. They were talking, laughing and he even discovered Achilles love for poetry. Agamemnon had reached their table with the rest of them, throwing insulting comments, making Patroclus want to hide away and never face anyone. His rambling attracted attentions from the rest of the students, making Patroclus’s blush even more visible.

“Maybe I should beat your ass again. Along with the rest of your pathetic puppies.” Achilles nodded to guys standing behind Agamemnon.

“You bet.” Menelaus took a step closer. They were clearly more than Achilles had faces the previous time, and Patroclus was feeling guilty. “This time your ass will get handed to you.” He smirked but Achilles remained calm.

“I don’t think so.” Another voice said and Patroclus turned his head towards it.

Patroclus could recognise him. Odysseus. Achilles best friend. Behind him there were others that he could recognise from some of his classes and the rugby team.

Achilles chuckled and stood up. “So, is the offer still up?” Achilles cocked an eyebrow.

Agamemnon furrowed his brow and Menelaus uncrossed his arms as the rest of them started taking a few steps back. Agamemnon cussed, Menelaus spat and everyone else scrambled off.

“You okay there, Menoitides?” Odysseus nodded to Patroclus.

“Yes, thank you.” Patroclus managed to say, pathetically.

Odysseus patted Achilles shoulder, saying “later”, before he walked away with the rest of the team.

That was the day Achilles had asked him to go out on Saturday. And that was the reason Patroclus was now all stressed out, searching frantically in his closet for something clean and something that could fit his body more.

After an hour searching he finally settled in a button up black shirt and black jeans.

His phone buzzed on the bed while he was fixing his wild mop of curls in the mirror.

i’m outside :)

Patroclus took a deep breath; his stomach was twisted in a knot from the nerves. He was going on a date with Achilles.

“What a great day to be alive” Achilles thought when he saw Patroclus making his way towards the car.

Achilles’ smile grew wider when he saw how handsome he looked. As soon as Patroclus was in the car, Achilles leaned in and pecked his lips catching him off guard.

Patroclus cheeks were pink. “You look hot.” Achilles smirked making Patroclus blush harder. They had shared a kiss before so it wasn’t their first one, but still Patroclus felt like he was just dreaming and it wasn’t reality.

“Thanks.” Patroclus grinned at him. “You look handsome yourself.” He commented and Achilles winked at him from the rear view as he was rolling off the streets.

They spend the rest of the night eating, drinking and talking about everything. Achilles had planned a dinner outside in the lake, since the weather was warm. Candles, wine, pasta and fruit were on table which were now gone and now they were lying on the grass, looking at the stars. Achilles reached over and intertwined their hands together.

“What a great night to be alive” Achilles whispered and Patroclus hummed.

“Indeed” He whispered and closed his eyes.