Nick (Sequel to JP)

1st & Goal


By luvyalots

“Have you read this article, Coach?” Nick – the sports section of the Washington Post clutched tightly in his hand – burst into Coach Palmer’s office, interrupting the quarterback meeting he had been having with Brandon and Peter. Nick’s powerful shoulders swung the door open so hard, the glass almost shattered as it hit the wall behind him, making the two other teens jolt.

“You mean the one in the Post?” Palmer asked calmly. “Yeah, I read it.” Nick could tell he knew exactly what he was talking about and could see in his eyes that he wasn’t crazy about it either. The Spartans had breezed through the state football tournament once again, but they would come up against their toughest opponents yet in the final – the Goodwin Falcons from Richmond.

“Listen to this,” Nick seethed, opening up the crumpled paper to read. “When asked if his team could stop the momentum of the Central Spartans, Goodwin Falcons quarterback Derek Blasinski stated, ‘Well, when your team is made up entirely of two sophomores, it doesn’t matter how good they are, anyone can beat them.’ What kind of crap is that?” Nick blurted, staring up at Palmer for answers.

“It’s just trash talk, Nick,” he responded quietly. “Don’t let it get to you.”

“But this is the Washington Post. They should know better.” Nick went on. “Don’t they know we have one of the strongest defensive lines in the state; Billy holds the record for most sacks, for God’s sake. Not only that, but our punt returner has more returning yards than anyone else in the league and we’re the only school in the district with an 85% field goal kicker! This stuff is bullshit,” he screamed, throwing the newspaper onto the Palmer’s desk.

“Hey, Angelakis,” the coach bellowed, immediately causing all three boys to freeze.

“Sorry, Coach,” Nick muttered. “It’s just not right for them to say that when they know it isn’t true.” Palmer looked up at his star wide receiver with a glint in his eye.

“It’s their coach, McMullen,” he explained. “I know him. He pushes his boys hard…and they’re notorious for shooting their mouths off.” He sighed, leaning back in his chair. “Like I said, don’t let it get to you. They know we don’t have many weaknesses.”

“Their defense is also one of the best in the state,” Brandon interjected, “but they don’t have the offense we do.” He gazed right at Nick as he spoke, immediately calming him down. “They’re just probably trying to rile themselves up.”

“Brandon’s right, Nick,” Palmer stated soothingly. “Relax. He was most likely misquoted anyway.”

“Yeah,” Peter laughed, “I heard that instead of saying that our team was made up entirely of two sophomores, he really said two queens.” Instantly, Nick glared fiercely over at his teammate.

“WHAT!?!” he yelled. Peter looked down at his feet, knowing it was a bad thing to say. Sometimes, the kid thought before he spoke. “You have to be fucking kidding me?”

“Nick,” Palmer stood up and leaned over his desk, glowering at Peter himself, “that’s only a rumor.” Nick closed his eyes and took in a deep breath. He looked over at Brandon who was just staring straight ahead stone-cold stoically. He had to keep his head for his sake…but it was too late. Nick saw a single tear creep down Brandon’s cheek as he ran out of the office. “Brandon!” Palmer called after him.

“Coach,” Nick said softly, holding up his hand. He could tell Palmer knew what this was about. “Let me talk to him,” and he hurried out into the hall. There, Brandon was leaning with one hand against the wall, his head hung low between his broad shoulders. “Hey, B,” Nick called to him. Brandon lifted his head; his eyes were heavy, sad. It broke Nick’s heart every time he saw them like that. He went up to him and placed his hand on his trap, giving it a little squeeze. “Coach is probably right,” he began. “Those probably are just rumors.”

“Yeah, but even if they are,” Brandon protested, “they’re still out there.” Nick looked down at the floor, realizing the truth in his best friend’s words.

“You haven’t told Coach about what happened last week, have you?” he asked. He knew Brandon wasn’t proud that he had broken down that one night at dinner. Star quarterbacks aren’t supposed to do that kind of thing. “Brandon,” Nick spoke more softly, “you’ve been through a lot in the past year. Nobody blames you for that.” Brandon sniffled.

“But that’s not it,” he said. “I’m the quarterback. I have to keep my head in the game. I can’t let the whole team down.” Nick flexed his jaw, understanding what he meant. “This is the state championships, there’s gonna be a lot of press…and even more because of us.” Nick stretched his huge arm full around Brandon’s shoulders.

“You know what you need,” he grinned infectiously. “You need to relax.” Brandon looked into his eyes and immediately cracked a slight smile. Nick knew no one could keep from feeling better when he did that. “Come on,” he went on, “Let’s get you out of here. I have to pick some stuff up at CVS on my way home anyway.”

Minutes later, Nick’s Mustang pulled into the CVS parking lot down the street and the two jocks climbed out. As soon as they entered the store, Nick felt the eyes of everyone on them. Yeah, they all knew who they were – the two most muscular, most gorgeous jocks in all Spartan history…who also happened to be gay. But no one cared about that anymore. They were heroes to the community, role models to the younger generation. It didn’t matter what anyone else at any other school thought. He just hoped Brandon felt the same way.

Slowly, they made their way through the aisles – Brandon having to walked behind Nick instead of beside him because his body was so broad – Nick grabbed the stuff he needed: shampoo, deodorant, vitamins – he wanted to pack on a bit more muscle for the upcoming wrestling season – and three boxes of condoms. As they did, they talked about football: how they planned to cream the Falcons, what plays they wanted to use during the game, how they were going to celebrate afterward. They knew anyone within earshot was listening. When they reached the checkout counter, the girl behind it eyed them dazedly and kept making mistakes with their purchase. They were used to it; they got it all the time.

“Brandon, give me your cell phone,” Nick ordered his teammate, as they waited for the girl to correct her latest error. Brandon fished his cell out of his pocket and handed it over. He watched Nick text someone and hand it back to him.

“Who’d you text?” he asked, though Nick could tell he already knew the answer.

“Who do you think?” Brandon blushed…Greg. “Like I said,” Nick continued, “you need to relax.” And he knew Greg was truly the only person that could do it completely. He grinned, flashing his perfect white teeth – and causing the girl to make another mistake. “Dude,” he said to Brandon, “you are so whipped.”

“Excuse me,” Brandon defended himself. “I’m whipped? You’re the one who’s wrapped around Erin’s little finger?”

“And what do you mean by that?” Nick taunted. Brandon laughed.

“Man, you knew exactly what kind of maxi pads to grab for her without even thinking about it,” he said. Nick comically narrowed his eyes and nudged him in the ribs.

“Shut up!”

“Ashley, I’m so happy for you!” Mrs. Maloney squealed as she wrapped her large arms around her son’s fiancé. Ryan laughed as he saw the look on his girlfriend’s face. “I can’t believe I’m going to be a grandmother,” his mom went on, her body quivering excitedly. Then she stopped suddenly and looked in horror at her husband. “But I’m too young to be a grandmother.”

“Maureen,” Mr. Maloney stated, “our kids are growing up. Deal with it.” Ryan smiled to himself again. He and Ashley had just told his parents the news of the coming baby…and they took it better than he had thought. Given that they were a bit old-fashioned, he assumed that they wouldn’t exactly approve of a pre-marital relationship like they had been having. JP’s coming out must have eased them up a bit. Regardless of what their children did – or how they did it – they were still proud of them. “Well, son,” his father continued, nudging him in the shoulder, one eyebrow propped in impending displeasure.

“Dad, it was an accident,” Ryan immediately assured him, as if that would do anything. But his father grinned and shook his head.

“Just make sure it’s a boy,” he ordered jokingly, beginning to laugh. Ryan breathed an inward sigh of relief and accepted his dad’s hug. Suddenly, Mrs. Maloney gasped, her eyes growing wide.

“Oh, what if you won’t fit into the wedding dress, honey?” she exclaimed to Ashley. The girl looked at her amused.

“Mom!” Ryan yelled, embarrassed. The woman shrugged.

“Well, the wedding is four mouths away,” she said matter-of-factly. “She’ll be showing by then.” Ryan rolled his eyes and shook his head. Now it starts, he thought.

“God, you’re so perfect,” Greg exhaled as he made out with Brandon in Nick’s bathroom, most of their clothes already discarded on the floor. The two boys were only wearing their briefs, their cocks bulging through the fabric.

“Shit, what about you?” Brandon answered, slipping his hands underneath Greg’s underwear and palming his ass, pushing his body further into his own. Greg moaned, massaging Brandon’s thick lats. As soon as his boyfriend had walked through Nick’s front door, Brandon had his hands on him, worshipping his angelic body even with clothes on. He forgot about everything else…the game, his dad, what everyone else thought of him. Greg was the only thing he saw, the only person he could think about.

“Oh, God!” Greg breathed as Brandon slid his briefs down his legs, letting his erect cock free and slapping Brandon in the thigh. THWACK! He lifted his hand to flow his fingers through Greg’s long, silky hair, while Greg’s hands explored every inch of Brandon’s wide, muscled back. RRRIP!

“Oh, shit! Not again!” Brandon exclaimed as his tight briefs tore under the force of his throbbing cock; its 13 inches – and nearly 8 inches around! – proved too much for the material. He looked down to see the small tears along his hips. Fuck, this was the third one this month! “See what you do to me?” he smiled provocatively at Greg.

“Shut up and fuck me!” Greg ordered him breathlessly. Brandon ripped the remains of his brief off his pelvis in obedience just as Greg turned around. Brandon’s heart skipped a beat as he saw his boyfriend’s ass just inches away from his dick. God, it was great not having to pretend anymore. All his life, he had to fake it whenever he was with a girl and over the years, he had gotten pretty good at it. Of course, the girl was usually too infatuated with his gorgeous looks and monster cock to notice he really wasn’t as interested in her. But now with Greg, all that was over.

Without any more hesitation – he couldn’t take it any longer anyhow – Brandon drove his cock into his boyfriend’s ass. Greg yelped in pain and ecstasy, his mouth flying open. Brandon reached around his waist and clutched his abs, feeling how they flexed and relaxed with each breath. Suddenly, Greg bent his upper body over with his wicked flexibility…and began sucking his own cock!

“Holy SHIT!” Brandon shouted in shock. He had never thought it was possible to give yourself a blowjob…and here he was, blowing himself while getting rammed from behind. It was too much; Brandon felt himself splooge into his boyfriend with such force, Greg’s body shuddered uncontrollably. His muscular chest heaving up and down, Brandon pulled his cock out of Greg’s buttcrack and helped him stand up straight. Greg grinned, his lips covered in his own jizz.

“God, I haven’t done that in a long time,” he muttered. “Come on, let’s see how Nick and Erin are doing.” Without skipping a beat, he grabbed Brandon’s arm and pulled him into Nick’s bedroom…where the two other teens were embroiled in hot, passionate sex themselves. Nick was straddling his girlfriend’s body, pumping her rhythmically as she sucked on his left bicep, her lips just able to get around its peak.

“Damn!” Brandon hissed as Greg pulled onto the bed. Erin leaned her head back and grinned, gesturing for the pair to come closer. They’ve been planning this, Brandon quickly realized as the girl reached out her arm to pull him toward her, Greg following behind him. Then, she began sucking his left nipple as Greg simultaneously began licking his right one, his hand drifting down to his shredded obliques. Brandon felt his cock get hard again. Jesus Christ, this was amazing!

“Turn over,” Nick whispered. Brandon looked up at his best friend, immediately meeting his hypnotic hazel eyes. Without even thinking, he obeyed him – how could he not? – and rolled onto his left side, Erin’s lips still around his left nipple. Somehow, Greg contorted his body once again to insert his cock up Brandon’s ass…while still licking his tit. Oh, FUCK! Brandon felt himself get closer and closer to another climax. Then suddenly, he saw Nick’s face come toward him and their lips touched. He had no choice but to kiss him back…and that was all that was needed to send him over the edge. Brandon’s cock shot a geyser so high, it nearly touched the ceiling, showering his juice all over the four of them. But they weren’t done yet.

“Come on,” Erin whispered in his ear. “I know you have one more left.” And no sooner had she said that, Brandon’s cock got rock hard a third time. By now, Nick had pulled out and was re-positioning himself to ass-fuck his girlfriend. That’s when Brandon realized what was coming next. “You haven’t forgotten how to have sex with a girl already, have you?” Erin asked, a smile on her face.

“No,” Brandon answered, the word barely escaping his mouth. Then, she reached up and wrapped her hand around the back of his thick neck, guiding his huge cock into her cunt. Even though he was gay, Brandon still admired the sheer perfection of Erin’s body. Her melon-sized breasts were firm and supple, her abdomen was hard and flat, her arms were toned and slightly muscular. God, she was the hottest girl he had ever seen…and he was about to fuck her.

“Go on,” Greg urged breathlessly from behind, still pumping him up the ass. Their groans filled the room as the four-way orgy continued. Erin screamed in ecstasy as she was invaded from the back and the front by two of the biggest cocks in the school. Suddenly, Brandon felt himself nearing ejaculation and he reared back. At the same time, Greg exploded into him and Erin screamed as Nick spewed into her. That was all it took for Brandon to unleash the biggest load he had ever let go in his life. He yelled out, his eyes squeezed shut. When he opened them again, their four naked bodies were lying in the mess of sheets made damp from the gallons of spunk.

“Now do you feel better?” Erin asked. Brandon could only nod.

“You have ten minutes,” the guard told Ian gruffly as he led him into the prisoner meeting room. He looked over at the table where Luke Johnson was sitting. God, he looked like shit, a shadow of his former meathead self. He’s smaller than me now, he thought as he walked over.

“Ian?” Luke’s eyes nearly flew out of his head as he noticed the teen sitting down across from him. “What the fuck are you doing here?”

“I need to talk to you about something,” Ian answered nervously. He had debated for a long time on whether to come or not, but he decided that he had to. “I have no one else to go to that can help.” He stared Luke straight in the eyes; they immediately averted away from him. Damn, he really was beaten down in here. “They say you may be getting out early,” he brought up. Luke gave a weak smile.

“Yeah, they’re lessening my sentence. Good behavior.” His eyebrows arched up slightly as he sighed. “A lot’s changed in the last couple of years since I’ve been in here,” he observed, leaning forward. “Is Brandon Jones really gay?” he asked. Ian glanced at him cautiously and nodded. Luke shook his head. “I can’t believe that kid’s a fag—” he suddenly stopped himself when Ian flinched uncomfortably. “Sorry, I didn’t mean to…I just can’t see him ass-fucking another guy.” Ian let out a puff of air.

“You should see him with his boyfriend,” he said.

“Brandon’s got a boyfriend?” Luke replied, shocked. “Jesus, things really have changed a lot.” He blinked and flexed his jaw. “Anyway, what did you want to talk to me about?” Ian paused before beginning his story, Luke patiently waited for him.

“I screwed up,” he began and then told Luke the entire story from the start – how he blackmailed him by releasing the video of Nick and Brandon making out, how they came out on their own. When it was all done, the two sat silently facing each other for a moment. Finally, Luke opened his mouth to speak.

“To tell you the truth,” he said, “this doesn’t sound at all like Travis.” Ian’s mouth dropped open. Luke had had dealings with him and had actually known him longer than he had, but…

“What do you mean?”

“I mean, the way he usually works is quick, impulsive almost,” the older boy explained. “This plan he made up sounds too patient, too methodical for him.” Ian narrowed his eyes at him.

“What are you saying?” he asked cynically. “Are you saying that he wasn’t behind it?” Luke thought for a second and then leaned back in his chair, his eyes squeezed shut.

“Ahh!” he groaned. “Why didn’t I see this?”

“What?” Ian leaned forward. “What is it?”

“It’s Brionna,” Luke blurted. “It has to be. That’s the only thing that could explain it.” Ian jerked his head back, forcing his thick neck to explode outward.

“You mean Ryan Maloney’s old girlfriend?” Luke nodded sternly. “How is she involved in this?” It just didn’t make sense to him. How could she be behind this whole thing?

“She vicious,” Luke said through his teeth. “She knows exactly how to hit people where it’ll hurt them the most. She goes after them from the inside out.” Ian’s shoulders fell in realization. Shit! “Look,” Luke continued, “there is one way to stop her that only a few people know about, but you’ll need me.” Ian looked back at him intently.

“Why can’t you just tell me what to do?” he asked hurriedly.

“Because I have to deal with certain people directly, in here and outside.” He sighed and licked his lips, as if he suddenly had a renewed look on life. Ian could tell he knew this was his chance to make things right. “My family has connections that my dad doesn’t think I know about.” Oh shit, Ian thought, what am I getting into? It all sounded so…he couldn’t find the word. Luke leaned forward one more time and looked him straight in the eyes.

“You’ll just have to trust me.”

“Did you see that sign up there?” Brandon asked Nick as they lined up along the sideline just after the national anthem had been sung.

“The ‘Welcome to Brokeback Stadium’ one?” he answered, cocking his eyebrows. “Yeah. You should’ve seen some of the ones they confiscated at the gate.” It was finally the night of the state championship against the Goodwin Falcons and UVA’s football stadium was jam-packed. He side-glanced his teammate and grinned. “Are you thinking what I’m thinking?” Brandon smiled as he put his helmet on.

“Let’s go out there and show them what a coupla gay guys can do?” he growled. Nick smiled and put his own helmet on and followed his fellow team captains to center field for the coin toss. Almost as soon as they were within earshot of the Falcons’ captains, they heard their trash talk.

“Is that some extra padding,” one of them taunted, “or are you two just happy to see me?” He immediately laughed. Nick recognized him as Derek Blasinski, the quarterback who was quoted in the Washington Post. He clenched his fists and tightened his jaw in an attempt to curb his anger. Now was not the time to do anything.

“Maybe you should take a timeout,” Blasinski continued, nodding toward Brandon, “and loosen him up a bit.” He laughed again. Nick forced himself to look away.

“Really,” Brandon suddenly interjected. “Well, we weren’t the ones holding hands with our co-captains walking out here.” Nick smirked to himself…good one.

“Alright, boys,” the referee stepped in between them. “We will have none of this.” That seemed to quiet them down and the coin toss commenced. The Spartans won it and elected to receive. As they jogged back to the sideline, Nick silently checked to see if Brandon was ok. He was. This is going to be a tough game, he thought.

The Falcons kicked off and Jason Petrelli, the Spartan punt returner charged his way forward, making it as far as the 40-yard line before he got tackled…good field position to start with. Lining up for their first play of the game, Brandon signaled for their normal pass play, designed to test the opposing team’s defense. They broke and Nick instantly ran around and forward, the Falcon cornerback right on his heels, giving him no room to even turn around. Christ, get off of me, he mentally screamed. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw the football come sailing toward him, but the cornerback still wouldn’t give him space. Nick twisted his body as best he could, but he couldn’t stretch his arms out enough to make the reception. He felt the rough skin of the ball braze against his forearm as the defender tackled him hard along the sideline. Shit! He hesitated before getting up – he had been hit harder than was probably needed – and that only invited denigration from the cornerback.

“Come on, faggot,” he bellowed. “Surely you’ve been hit harder than that!” Nick looked up to see the defenseman, who was nearly the size of Billy, peering down at him and subtly thrusting his hips back and forth. Nick shut his eyes as he pushed himself up and ran to the huddle.

“Sorry, man,” Brandon immediately apologized. “You were the only one even close to open. This is the biggest, strongest defensive line we’ve seen this season.” Nick’s face was visibly seething with anger and he knew Brandon could read his thoughts. “Let’s do the Chinese Rocket play!” he called. Andre Jackson, one of the running backs flashed his already-sweaty face, nearly backing out of the huddle.

“B, in’t too early in the game for that?” Brandon glared at him seriously. “’Aight,” Andre acquiesced and the huddle broke. Nick lined up, eyeing the cornerback angrily. The cornerback gave him a little air kiss just as the ball was snapped, but Nick ignored him and blasted past him. As expected, the guy was on his heels once again, assuming this play was going to be similar to the last one…but that was what the play was designed to do. After five yards, Nick turned on his heels and jetted in the oblique direction, pumping his powerful legs as hard as he could, leaving the cornerback in the dust. He caught the spiraling ball in his sight and grasped it flawlessly in his huge arms, now running at full speed toward the goal line. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw another defender trying to cut him off at the 20. Oh no, you’re not, Nick thought and tucked the ball under his right arm and Hesimaned him off his side, his massive body making only a glancing blow that did little to stray Nick’s path. TOUCHDOWN! The crowd erupted in cheers as Nick scored the first points of the game. He didn’t even bother looking at the Falcon players who no doubt were feeling dejected from being deceived so easily.

After the extra point, the score was 7-0 Spartans. But that would be the only score they could manage for the rest of the half. The Falcons got far enough on their first drive to score a field goal – making the score 7-3 – but they turned up the juice on their defensive book. Brandon had trouble connecting to anyone, especially Nick who was being covered by two, sometimes three, defenders. And even the offensive linemen were having trouble stopping them; Brandon got sacked twice before he could throw the ball away.

Meanwhile, on nearly every play, the Falcons were taunting them, always seeming to come up with new lines every time. By halftime, Nick could tell that Brandon was ready to explode. As they jogged into the locker room, he watched his teammate go into the showers and scream, hitting his fists against the wall. The sound reverberated off the tiles, practically scaring the rest of the team. Nick instantly ran in there and tried to settle him down.

“B, relax!” he said, grabbing him by his pads.

“AAAAAHH!” Brandon screamed again, his chest heaving up and down. “Why can’t they just fucking shut the fuck up!” he yelled. Nick pushed him into the wall and leaned into him. He could feel Brandon’s spit hit his face as he breathed, his sweat pouring down his cheeks.

“B, you have…to calm…down,” Nick hissed. He was feeling the same thing his best friend was. He wanted to smash them every time they said something, but he knew that would be what they wanted. “What they’re saying is not going to keep us from scoring,” he continued, “so just ignore it.”

“I can’t,” Brandon seethed.

“You have to,” Nick demanded. Carefully, he let go of him and backed away. Brandon cracked his neck and walked out of the showers, passing his teammates who had gathered at the entrance to see what was going on. Coach Palmer gave them a pep talk before heading out for the second half, but the game pretty much picked up where it left off…purely defense. That was, until the Spartan defense received a five-yard penalty for offsides. From there, the drive went downhill, resulting in a 45-yard touchdown for the Falcons – the score was now 10-7.

“What happened?” Nick quietly asked Billy as the defensive line sullenly jogged off the field.

“It was me,” he stated plainly. “You don’t wanna know what he said.” Nick closed his eyes. Shit, the whole team was feeling it. As soon as they had possession of the ball on the next play, he signaled a timeout.

“What is this about?” Palmer questioned him as the entire team surrounded them.

“Trust me,” he said to the man. Palmer nodded and let him speak. “Guys,” Nick began, “I know we’re all fired up, I know those assholes over there have been giving us shit all night, but we can’t keep letting it affect us.” He paused, making sure he looked into the eyes of every teammate. “Whatever you’re feeling right now, direct it to the right place…not up here.” He pointed to his head. “Right now, the Falcons are winning the psychological game…don’t let them win the football game.” He glanced over at Brandon as he finished and watched him look at his feet.

“Let’s do it,” Palmer boomed before sending them back out. Nick’s speech seemed to give new life to the team and despite what the Falcons would say, they devoted their minds to the game and nothing else. Billy and the defense shut down the Goodwin offense and Brandon made some spectacular plays for yardage, including four first downs on four consecutive plays, followed by a touchdown, pumping up the crowd in the process. Halfway through the fourth quarter, the score was 14-10, Spartans.

But then, disaster struck. Nick could almost see it coming before the ball was snapped. He could see it in the eyes of the Falcon defenders as they rocked their weight during the count. It was 1st & goal with just over two minutes left…he tried to somehow warn Brandon, but he was too concentrated on the play – they needed this touchdown to clinch the championship. As soon as the lines broke, Nick shifted his body inside toward the middle linebacker, who had been pressuring Brandon the whole game…but it was too late. The noise of the crowd rose dramatically as they saw what happened next.

Nick had gone for the wrong guy.

The two other linebackers barreled through the Spartan offensive line and straight for Brandon just as he was about to pass. To Nick, it all happened in slow motion; he could do nothing to stop it. Both defenders smashed into Brandon with such force, the ball was flung from his upheld arm…one tackled his legs, while the other rammed his exposed side…twisting his body in two directions. The look on Brandon’s face was horrific as he went down painfully hard to the turf. Meanwhile, the ball bounced freely a few yards away…and was scooped up by another Falcon who began running the opposite way. It took nearly three seconds for the Spartans to respond, but by that time the defenseman was almost to the 50. The crowed was going ballistic as he neared the endzone…and scored a touchdown off the shocking turnover.

But Nick wasn’t watching him…he was looking at Brandon’s motionless body still lying on the ground. Immediately, he signaled to the referee. While the Falcons continued celebrating, Palmer ran onto the field to check on Brandon. Nick headed toward him as everything went back into real time.

“Brandon, are you alright?” he asked worriedly as he watched his best friend grimace through the pain. He jerked his head yes.

“I’m fine,” he grunted. He tried getting up, but he couldn’t. Instantly, the trainer arrived and began tending to him. At first, Brandon tried waving him away, saying he was alright, but he…

“The ball was dead,” Palmer argued with the ref.

“No,” the ref rebutted. “The ball went loose long before hit the ground. The turnover is good.” Nick’s heart fell as he realized the touchdown was going to be counted, but then he looked back at Brandon…who still hadn’t moved.

“Brandon!” he yelled, not knowing what to think.

“Angelakis!” the trainer reprimanded him. “Stay away!”

“I’m fine!” Brandon repeated, his face wet with sweat…and what looked like tears streaming from his eyes.

“No, you’re not,” the trainer corrected him, looking down at him sternly. A nervous look on his face, he began gently slapping Brandon’s legs. “Does anything hurt down here?” he asked.

“Down where?” Brandon answered, confused. Then, he awkwardly lifted his head to see what the trainer was doing. And that’s when the look of horror that Nick had never seen before crossed his face. He suddenly began twisted his upper body, his abs flexing back and forth. “SHIT!” he screamed.

“Jones!” the trainer ordered. “Try to stay still!” But it was no use; Brandon wasn't listening to him. He kept yelling in terror.

“I can’t feel my legs!” •

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