Caillou sat in the center of his bed, surrounded by things he had unpacked, but hadn’t gotten around to putting in their proper place. “At least the room is big,” he mumbled as he gave his new bedroom another once over. “Too bad I have to share it."
Caillou’s black eyes fell on the empty bed at the other side of the room. Unlike Caillou’s bed, which was still bare, his roommate’s bed was impeccably tidy and covered by a plush purple comforter. While Caillou’s side of the room was in a state of total disarray, his roommate’s area was neat and homey. Caillou had yet to meet his new living mate, but the sixteen-year-old was getting an idea of what his absent roommate was like.
His mahogany desk was covered by text books and notebooks. In the center was a sleek black laptop. Behind the desk was a black leather chain. A cork board, adorned with track and field medals hung over the desk. From all the 1st place medals, Caillou guessed that his roommate was one of the biggest track stars on campus.
“So is this guy a jock or a goody two shoes?” Caillou wondered aloud.
“A little of both,” answered a voice from the door.
Caillou turned with a start. “I didn’t notice you there,” he said defensively. The guy standing at his door was short, about 5’5”, and stocky. His brown hair was buzzed close to his head, which made his slightly pointed ears more noticeable. “Are you my roommate?”
The interloper laughed. “Me? Na. I’m Hamilton. I live in the box down the hall this dorm tries to pass off as a room.” Hamilton moved forward and held out his hand. “You’re the new guy, right?”
Caillou looked down at the offered hand and then up at Hamilton. “Yeah, I don’t shake hands.”
Hamilton pulled back his hand and shoved it in the pocket of his grey pants. “Fair enough, new guy,” he said with a shrug.
A frown formed on Caillou’s face. “I’ve got a name,” he mumbled.
“You still haven’t offered it,” Hamilton retorted.
The two stood in silence for a moment.
Finally he gave an answer. “Caillou,” he said. “I’m Caillou.”
“Cool name, new guy.” Hamilton turned and walked towards the door. “Anyway, I’m going out. Actually, most of the guys won’t be back for a while. There’s a meeting for club and team captains tonight and everyone in this dorm is a captain…” Hamilton paused and turned to Caillou. “I guess you’re pretty lucky to have gotten into this dorm,” he added before leaving the room.
Caillou fell back on his bed and sighed. “Yeah…lucky me.”
Caillou was awoken by a commotion coming from down stairs. He wasn’t sure when he had fallen asleep, but outside the window he could see the sun setting, so he had clearly been out for a while.
“Guys, keep it down. My roommate is sleeping upstairs,” Caillou heard someone say.
“Not anymore,” Caillou grumbled as he sat up in bed. His shirt was wrinkled from his impromptu nap, so he pulled it off. Without looking he pulled a t-shirt from the pile of clothes on top of his suitcase. “I guess I’ll go meet the gang,” he said as he pulled on the fresh t-shirt.
As Caillou made his way towards the stairs, he heard his housemates continue their conversation, of which Caillou was the topic.
“If chico wants to lie in bed all day that’s his deal,” said a voice Caillou did not recognize. “We can’t be expected to keep quiet all night on his account.”
Caillou recognized the voice of the person who spoke next. “Diego has a point. Anyways, I met new guy earlier and he’s not exactly a charmer,” said Hamilton
“Give him a break, guys.” It was the same person who had told them to keep the noise down; Caillou’s roommate. “We’ve all known each other for years, but for a new student this place could certainly take some getting used to.”
He was answered by a chorus of grumbles.
“Just promise me you’ll try to be nice,” Caillou’s roommate said. “The next time you see him say at least on nice thing.”
Caillou took that as a cue to enter the kitchen. Three guys surrounded the island in the center of the room. Caillou recognized Hamilton, but the other two were complete strangers.
“Hey new guy,” Hamilton said. “I made pumpkin muffins,” he motioned to a plate on the island. “Help yourself.”
Caillou raised an eyebrow. Muscular Hamilton did not seem like the baking type. If anything he came off as a jock with a chip on his shoulder. “The name is Caillou,” was all he said in response.
“That shirt is muy bueno,” the guy to Hamilton’s left spoke up. He had tan skin and warm brown eyes, a few shades lighter than his hair.
Caillou looked down at himself. He hadn’t even noticed what shirt he had pulled out of his pile. He was wearing a white t-shirt with a blue t-rex graphic on the front.
“Animals are kind of my thing,” the boy continued. “I study zoology. Oh, mi nombres es Diego. Pleased to meet you.” Diego held out his hand, but pulled it back just as quickly. “Sorry. Hamilton told us you don’t do hand shakes.” Diego put his hand into the pocket of his tan cargo shorts and leaned back on his heels; averting his eyes from Caillou’s.
“Yeah, thanks,” Caillou said in response to the compliment. He ignored the awkwardness toward the end of Diego’s introduction. Based off Diego’s voice, he wasn’t the same guy who had spoken up for Caillou as a roommate. And since Caillou had already met Hamilton, that left one guy.
Caillou looked over at the remaining housemate. He was tall with dark skin and a lean body. His clean yellow tank top showed off his defined muscles.
“I dig the bald look,” the track star said, running a hand over his own hairless head. He rubbed his hand on the leg of his black jeans and then gave a little wave. “I’m Bill. Welcome.”
Caillou unconsciously rubbed the back of his head. “You’re my roommate?”
“Guilty,” Bill leaned against the island. His long legs stretched out behind him. “You probably haven’t had anything to eat since breakfast. If Hamilton’s pumpkin muffins don’t interest you, I can take you to one of the on campus restaurants.”
“I strongly suggest trying one of Hamilton’s muffins,” Diego said through bites of muffin. “They’re delicioso,” he added while brushing crumbs off the front of his light blue t-shirt.
“I know you want to hit this,” Hamilton said, moving closer to Diego. “It’s gonna take more than flattery of my culinary skills to get you laid though.”
In one swift movement, Diego shoved Hamilton against the island and held the shorter boy’s face in his hands. “You sure about that, Hamilton?” Diego asked in a hoarse whisper. “I’d blow your mind.”
Hamilton and Diego stayed like that for a moment, before Hamilton shoved Diego away. The two broke into laugher and began rough housing.
Caillou stood stunned, until the sound of Bill chuckling pulled him out of his silence.
“That tends to happen,” Bill explained. “It can get a bit crazy here, but I think you’ll fit in.” Bill smiled at his roommate.
Caillou didn’t respond. He couldn’t help but notice that Bill had the whitest teeth he had ever seen. Caillou couldn’t help staring any more than he could help what came out his mouth next. “Whoa.” Caillou blinked. The blush he felt rushing to his cheeks brought him back to reality.
Luckily, Hamilton and Diego were too busy wrestling to notice and Bill was polite enough to pretend as if he hadn’t noticed either.
Bill picked up the plate of pumpkin muffins and left the kitchen, gesturing for Caillou to follow him. “Come on. Let’s get you unpacked,” he said. “We’ll get you something to eat later, but these muffins should hold you off for now.”
Caillou nodded and followed after his new roommate. As they made their way up the stairs, Caillou couldn’t help notice how nice Bill’s ass looked in those fitted black jeans.
Caillou sat at his desk, which was now covered by books, a lamp, and his laptop. It had taken over an hour, but there was finally some semblance of order to Caillou’s side of the room. “Well that was an ordeal.” Caillou leaned back in his chair and groaned.
Bill laughed. He was sprawled out on his bed, but he managed to look completely kempt at the same time.
He looks like a freaking model. Caillou thought to himself as he watched his roommate in what he hoped was a surreptitious manner.
Bill exhaled gently, causing his yellow tank top to rise, revealing a toned chest and those hot hip bone V’s. Do they even have a name? Caillou wondered as he checked Bill out. Sex bones? Na, that sounds a bit too pornographic.
“Are you hungry?” Bill asked suddenly, pulling Caillou from his lascivious thoughts.
“Oh, yeah. I guess I am,” Caillou admitted. His stomach growled in agreement.
Bill pulled his cell phone from his back pocket. “Well, we’re all going to Blondie’s later,” he said while tapping the screen of his phone. “We’re just waiting for Diego’s roommate to get back, which shouldn’t be long. Have a pumpkin muffin,” Bill said gesturing to the plate on Caillou’s desk. “They’re good. I promise.”
Caillou picked up a muffin and took a bite. “Whoa, this is good,” he said after swallowing. “Hamilton doesn’t really strike me as the baking type though.”
Bill nodded. “He’s been doing it all his life,” Bill explained. “It started off as a way to get attention. He’s the youngest of five and all his brothers hold the market on one sport or another. No one in his house could cook though, so Hamilton learned how.” Bill looked down at his phone. “Looks like Arthur is here. Arthur is Diego’s roommate. We can head over to Blondie’s if you’re ready.”
Caillou finished his muffin and got up. “What exactly is Blondie’s?”
“It’s an on campus diner,” Bill explained. “It’s a pretty popular place.” Bill stood and led Caillou out of the room and down to the kitchen.
In the kitchen stood Diego, Hamilton, and a third boy Caillou didn’t recognize. The boy was average height, just a bit shorter than Diego and a few good inches taller than Hamilton. He had tan, sun kissed skin, and sea green eyes. His sandy blond hair framed his face in the style of shaggy curls.
“You must be Caillou,” he said stepping forward. “I hear you’re not into shaking hands. I can respect that. I’m a fist bump kinda guy myself,” he said matter of factly. “I’m Arthur.”
Caillou was taken aback by Arthur’s abruptness. To Caillou, Arthur looked pretty sloppy in his tan pants, white v-neck, and flip flops, but Arthur had a steady confidence that made up for his unkempt appearance.
“Yeah, I’m Caillou,” Caillou said to Arthur. “Cool hair.”
A lazy smile spread across Arthur’s face. “Thanks, man. I’ve gotta say, you pull off the bald look almost as well as Bill.” He looked around at his housemates. “I’ve got a serious case of the munchies,” he said. “Can we get some grub?”
Diego rolled his eyes. “Aye papi, we’re going to Blondie’s.” He put his arm around his roommate’s shoulder. “We’ve been waiting for you this whole time.”
Arthur nodded slowly. “Much appreciated, my brother.”
What is with these guys? Caillou thought. They’re so odd. He never had much of a poker face, so his confusion showed.
Bill noticed that confusion and got the group back on topic. “Let’s head over to Blondie’s before it gets too late.”
The guys all nodded in agreement and made their way out the backdoor.
Bill nudged Caillou gently. “They can be a bit much sometimes, but they’re all good guys,” Bill assured him. “Come on, food’ll make you feel better,” Bill insisted as he led Caillou out the door.
Chapter 2: Chapter 2
Blondie's turned out to be a 50's themed diner located off the campus' main street, right next to the movie theater. Caillou and his housemates were greeted by a curly haired red head on a pair of roller skates. "Hey guys." Her voice was bubbly, but she sounded genuinely happy to see them. "You all want a booth, right?"
The group all nodded in unison.
"Alright, follow me." She turned and skated off to a booth with a window view of the bustling campus. Once the group was seated, the waitress placed menus in front of them. "I don't know why I bother bringing you guys menus," she put her hands on her hips in mock annoyance. "Ya'll always end up ordering the same thing." She turned towards Caillou. From the direct angle Caillou could clearly see the name tag on the front of her white t-shirt. Her name was Maggie. "I don't believe we've met. I'm Maggie."
Caillou smiled involuntarily. Maggie had a pleasantly infectious personality. "Caillou," he replied.
"Oh, so you're Bill's new roommate!" Maggie beamed. "I'm pleased as punch to meet you. Tell ya what, since you're new how about you let me make your order for you? You're not a vegetarian are you?"
Caillou shook his head. "No. Meat is fine with me."
"Good." Maggie took their menus. "I'll be back in a bit with your drinks," she said before skating off.
Hamilton nudged Diego. "You're as smooth as ever, buddy."
"Ay dios mio." Diego groaned. "Don't you ever get tired of riding me?"
Hamilton raised an eyebrow.
Diego playfully shoved Hamilton. "You're such a pig."
"Oink oink," Hamilton responded. He shoved Diego back and the two began to play fight.
Arthur, who had been leaning against the window, raised his head. "If your heart goes pitter patter every time Maggie is around, you've gotta bite the bullet and take a chance, brother."
Diego groaned. "Do we really have to talk about this in front of the new guy?"
"I couldn't care less about your love life. Don't change the subject on my account," Caillou retorted.
"Besides," Hamilton said with a snicker. "It wouldn't be long before new guy discovered your love for Maggie." Hamilton turned to Caillou. "He sings Teenage Dream every morning. It's a bit ridiculous."
At that moment Maggie skated over with a tray of drinks. "Sorry about the wait guys. So I've got a strawberry milkshake for Hamilton, a root beer float for Bill, a tomato juice for Arthur, lemonade for Diego, and I went ahead a got a malted milk for Caillou." She placed the drinks in from of them. The group thanked her in unison. "Your food'll be out shortly. Holler if you need anything."
The group all sipped their drinks quietly for a bit. Arthur stirred his tomato juice with a stick of celery. Hamilton licked whipped cream off his spoon. Diego sipped his lemonade through a swirly straw. Caillou looked down at his drink. It was white and a bit thicker than normal milk.
"It's good," Bill said quietly. "It's basically milk that's super charged with vitamins."
Caillou frowned slightly. Bill laughed. Maggie had brought them all glasses of water in addition to their other drinks. Bill finished off his water, then poured a bit of Caillou's malted milk into it. "I'll show you," he said before taking a long gulp of the drink. "See? It's good."
Caillou laughed. "You've got a bit on your lip." He picked up a napkin and cleaned the milk mustache from Bill's lip. Caillou sat back and smiled. Across the table Arthur looked at the pair with a knowing smile on his face.