Short Fiction: Please Don’t Touch Me [2]

Previous Post on the prompt for this story is here.

Proszę, Nie Dotykaj Mnie.
[Please, Don’t Touch Me.]

After touch-averse collegiate spies his childhood friend having sex with an upper classman, he plants a hidden camera to covertly join them.

Dyngus Day involved dousing your crush with enough water to expose their naked body through soaked clothes. Since his youth, Tobiasz had visited Krzysiek’s on the Monday after Easter armed with a super-soaker water cannon.

Krzysiek fought back with a hose, but that spindly rubber cord was no match for his high-end water gun. Every year he heaped a thorough drenching upon Krzysiek and then ogled the results until his friend found time to change his clothes; how could he have not known that Tobiasz wanted him?

Tuesday morning found Tobiasz in the computer lab.

The campus firewall installation took hours, with all three IT students playing the waiting game. He brought coffee as promised, even a milk tea for Marko, who started the day drinking black tea sweetened with evaporated milk.

Marko said nothing about Friday, and Tobiasz prepared himself for a confrontation when the cordial advisor leaned over his shoulder, his sandalwood cologne permeating Tobiasz’s workspace.

 “Tobuś.” Careful not to touch him, Marko’s minty breath tickled his ear. “Bolonski’s birthday meeting is after classes today. If you’re not attending, let me know.”

“I have other plans,” said Tobiasz, eyes on the screen.

“That’s cool,” said Marko, stepping away. “Just leave some cash in the can,”

Tobiasz turned to him. “I can give you a fiver,”

“That’ll work,” Marko said, tapping the desk near the keyboard.

Tobiasz put the bill where Marko tapped. “Thanks.”

“No problem,” said Marko, grabbing the bill. “If you change your mind about attending, come get me in Bolonski’s office,”

Tobiasz looked Marko in the eye and found no judgment, easing his conscience while also confusing him. Technically, they hadn’t exchanged words that afternoon at Krzysiek’s, but he knew the man caught him standing there.

Sitting through the first of his two classes that day, he replayed the moment Marko’s gaze found him. He wasn’t mistaken, and he wasn’t misremembering it. The shame he’d felt in Marko’s stare still burned to the bone.

In his next class, he spotted Krzysiek in row eight.

Tobiasz had deleted every text his friend had sent since Friday, and when Krzysiek showed up at the apartment on Monday, he’d shoved his earbuds in to avoid hearing his name called through the door.

Hopeful eyes targeted him as he entered the lecture hall. He walked to the third row and sat near one of the shy girls. At dismissal, Tobiasz exited quickly, pretending not to hear Krzysiek saying his name.

The offices in the tech-wing vestibule got locked up this time of day since the advisors cleared out before commuter traffic clogged the byway. Tobiasz hadn’t changed his mind about attending the get-together, but he wished to address Marko again, knowing damn well the man saw him.

Bolonski’s door stood wide open, casting the only light in the darkened hall.

“It felt like we were twelve again.” Krzysiek’s boyish tenor filtered out. “We were digging in the sand, and I touched him, and he ran home crying.”

They’d known each other before kindergarten when their street boasted dozens of beachfront homes. Everyone’s yard contained sand, and he and Krzysiek spent those days designing their version of an Aztec city. Adding water to the canals proved futile since the refined grains absorbed the water, and when little Tobiasz expressed frustration, Krzysiek tried to hug him.

“He acted like I’d burned him. I’ve never felt so bad in my whole life,” Krzysiek continued. “Friday, it felt like that all over again. Maruś, what if he saw us?”

Tobiasz clenched his teeth; he thought his best friend understood. A touch felt like a blade dragged across his skin, and he carried wounds from every time someone touched him.

Marko’s deep voice indicated his movement.

“You came out as he entered the house, right?”

Krzysiek sighed. “Yes, but,”

“Then how did he see anything?”

Tobiasz brought his hand to his mouth; Marko hadn’t told Krzysiek that he had seen him.

“I waited in lit class for him, and he sat somewhere else,” Krzysiek said. “He’s never not sat with me, ever.”

“I know it’s none of my business,” Marko said softly. “But why is he the way he is?”

“I don’t know. His mom went on this religious kick after his dad died. Like, she always threatened to pull him out of school over the littlest things. The priest was at their house at least once a week, calming her down.” Krzysiek’s voice came laced with pity. “My mom felt so bad she’d bring Tobiasz into our place when she caught him outside after dark.”

“What was wrong with his house?” Marko asked.

“His mom never threw anything away. Tobiasz used his bedroom window to get in and out of the house because she blocked the hallway with all her shit.” Krzysiek said. “My mom washed his school uniforms for him because he couldn’t get to the washer and dryer in his house.”

Tobiasz clenched his teeth. Mother’s hoarding had nothing to do with it; he wasn’t germophobic or put off by messes. His aversions might’ve been rooted in his mother’s constant control of everything around him, but hearing Krzysiek diagnoses violated him more than anything his mother ever enacted.

“Dad always let him eat dinner with us and slept overnight four or five times a week. When we started high school, my parents got divorced. Tobiasz’s mom stopped him from coming over, but he always found a way,”

“You came out to him, right?” Marko asked.

“Before we started classes here, yes. Most of my hookups were when I went into Gdansk with my mom, so he knew I was gay but didn’t know I had sex?”

After a beat, Marko spoke. “Did he ever ask you out?”

“Never. Like, I never suspected he felt that way about me or anyone, for that matter,” Krzysiek sounded tearful. “What a shitty fucking friend I am, right?”

“Not at all, Krzysiu,” Marko’s honeyed words made Tobiasz sick.

“Like, how did I not know?” Krzysiek sobbed. “If he never speaks to me again, I totally deserve it, right?”

“Clearly, he counted on you staying in life,” said Marko. “Wanting to hook up with you might be his next logical step.”

“I don’t think he’s capable of hooking up,” said Krzysiek.

Anger coursed through him; he hated being touched, but he wasn’t broken; like every other man, he possessed a sex drive. He’d visited gay escorts and tried fucking them, but his anxiety soon eclipsed his desire, causing him to go limp. Therapy had made him more touch-averse, but the counselor at least provided him a means to purchase an anal masturbation sleeve.

“I should go over there,” Krzysiek said.

“No, you should give him some space,” Marko said. “He’ll come back to you when he’s ready.”

“What if doesn’t?” Krzysiek countered.

“I don’t think that’s how it’ll play out. He loves you as a friend first,” said Marko. “He knows his problems, and he knows he needs therapy,”

Krzysiek sulked. “He stopped seeing his therapist,”

“Well, then he has his reasons for that too,” Marko defended. “He’s not obligated to fix himself to fit anyone’s standards, Krzysiu.”

“You’re right, I guess,” Krzysiek murmured.

“Just give him time,” Marko advised. “I don’t think he’ll want to lose you as a friend, so give it time.”

Despite Tobiasz’s anger, Marko’s assessment resonated.

Suddenly, their mouths came together noisily.

“I’m sorry you’re both going through this shit,” Marko whispered.

Krzysiek hummed. “You’re coming over tonight, right?”

“When’s your mom due back?”

“She said not to wait up for her,”

“I got some birthday cake to eat first,”

Krzysiek cooed. “I’ll be your birthday cake.”


Tobiasz seethed as he sped over the highway.

He could forgive Krzysiek for being a callous ass like everyone else in the world, but right now, it hurt too much to try. To him, Tobiasz and his crazy mother were something terrible that had occurred in his life, like a car accident he witnessed as a child.

Soon enough, Tobiasz’s anger gave way to longing.

Krzysiek’s pale white buttocks fixed to his lover’s tanned and muscled groin. Inky strands laced across his sweaty throat, which trembled when he uttered how good it felt with a dick in his ass.

Tobiasz could make him moan, loud enough to wake the dead. This fantasy clouded his head as he rummaged through an equipment box in his spare room and pulled out a wireless spy camera still in its packaging.

Bitter dreams prevailed, with Krzysiek on his knees choking as Tobiasz fucked his throat. His erotic gagging became background noise while Tobiasz watched his friend’s mother get into her Fiat, dressed up for a night on the town.

Inside the house, Krzysiek’s bedroom proved familiar territory. He nested the tiny camera among a collection of shelved plush toys, then synced it with his phone. He then adjusted the camera to center the bed on his phone’s screen; Krzysiek’s privacy was a suitable penance for revealing Tobiasz’s childhood trauma.

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