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Realistic or Modern The Pioneering Roommates

Sub Genres
LGTBQ, Romance, School, Slice of Life, Supernatural

Pokeking

New Member
Dawn. The start of the beginning. The young man had spent his hours last night from dinnertime until midnight making sure that he had everything ready to go. Sleep was uneasy as a thought gremlin kept prodding him. Did you pack this? Did you pack that? He growled and turned over. Let me sleep. Just for a few hours. Let me sleep. Here comes the dawn. Joshua Ryota Nakayama climbed out of bed and washed up. No bath, no shower. Just wash the face, cram the final meal, and get going on the long journey.

The weeks since graduating from St. Isidore High passed by in a blink. First, there was the brief interlude between the ceremony and their vacation to Japan. He had never been, his mother had never been, and his father hadn’t been back to the country of his birth in nearly 30 years. Two weeks of fun and knowledge that was capped off by a family reunion in Ibaraki, a suburb of Osaka, where he met his father’s family for the first time. After that, came a cavalcade of lasts. Not final lasts, but lasts before he headed to college. He spit out the used toothpaste and looks at the mirror. Better get used to this face buddy. You're going to be rocking the human look 24/7. He could envision the wolf inside sulk and retreat to the metaphorical corner. Josh hated to do that to himself. There was just something liberating about being a wolf. His parents were totally understanding because it was just their son in another form. The rest of the world might not be so accepting.

Magin College in the town of Sutter had been chosen meticulously for one who was so unique. Here was a small town population of a few thousand, a school with a student body half the size, and a healthy forest.

Here is the family SUV and here is his truck. They set out from Houston and traveled freeway and lonely road for six hours to reach Sutter. It was a scenic town worthy of Rockwell. One of the few modern blips was the campus nestled in the northwest part of town. Its size was three blocks by four and the forest lay to the north. Beloved by locals and travelers, there were camp grounds and trails.

In the lot in front of Selby Hall, Josh parked and exited his truck. He is an Asian male who is five feet and ten inches tall. He wears tan cargo shorts and an olive green short-sleeved shirt in the Henley style which covers an athletic build with firm musculature. His face is pleasing and his pitch black hair is shoulder length and is pulled tightly into a man bun.

Josh checks in at the front desk where he gets his resident packet and his keys. He heads to Room 321 where he inserts the key and twists. Has he arrived first or is there someone on the other side?
 

Rihou

I love wolves!
"You got everything you need?" His mother said as she gave her youngest son a hug goodbye. It was before dawn they they were up, living on a ranch does that to you. Having to get up early and tend to the cattle, cleaning out the stalls, collecting eggs from the chickens. They were out in the middle of nowhere in a small town in Kansas, that's what Matthew liked about the college he was getting ready to travel to. Another small town. He didn't really like to big cities, a bit overwhelming to him. He was the only one to go to college in his family so far; there is still his little sister whom was in her junior year of high school. His older brother, he stayed at the ranch after high school helping their parents, it's what he wanted to do. Matthew Shane Wolf, not so much, he wanted to get of the small town he's known his whole life and move to another small town and make something of himself. Original right?

Blue eyes looked at the same but older blue eyes as they pulled away from their goodbye hug. He was taller than his mother at five foot eight inches where she stood a five foot one, she shared the same dirty blonde hair of his father as well as his tan complexion. Probably the German blood in him from his dad's side, they tan really well and hardly get sun burnt. "Yeah, I have everything." he said as he hugged his the rest of his family goodbye as well before getting into his truck. His mom wanted him to take her car that was better on the gas mileage, but with everything that he needed for the dorm room wouldn't fit in the tiny car. So he was stuck with his old gas guzzling truck. He bought the truck off of their neighbor whom just had it sitting there not doing anything but collecting dust and rust. He spent all of his high school career fixing the thing up.

"You have clean underwear? Socks? You got your toothbrush right?" His mother asked worried and not wanting her son to leave. His father stepped in and place a hand on his mother's shoulder. "That's enough, honey. I'm sure he's got everything he needs. He needs to get going or he won't make it there in time." Matthew gave is father a grateful look before starting the engine and slowly pulling out. "Make sure you call us when you get there!" His mother called after him as he drove off. "And make sure you keep your grades up!" Matthew stuck his hand out the window signaling that he heard his mother, and off he went.

The drive was long and boring, but he made it to Sutter in a timely manner. Looking around as he drove by towards the college, Matthew couldn't help but smile. He was definitely going to like it here. Checking in at the front desk, getting his resident packet and his own key; Matthew made it to his dorm room of 321. Looking around the room, it was small, but he was use to that. Two twin beds on either side a desk at the end of each bed and a small dresser and closet on either side of the room as well. There was two of everything. He was to have a roommate, whom didn't look like was there just yet. "I guess I get first pick."

Having moved his stuff in and already picking a side, Matthew was sitting in his bed with a sketch book in hand. Drawing was a favorite past time of his. There wasn't much else to do in a small town. Looking out the window before looking back to his book, charcoal pencil in hand, he was sketching the scenery out the window. Wiping his hand on his blue jeans before rubbing a spot on his right cheek, not noticing the charcoal residue still on his hand smearing on his face. Matthew looked up at his heard the sound of a key being pushed into the hand and turning, watching the door open. His roommate?
 

Pokeking

New Member
The door surrendered to Josh’s gentle nudge. So I am not the first. Oh well. It was a 50/50 chance anyhow.

It was a blond young man upon the bed with a sketchpad. As his buddy Brett McPherson would say, totally rad. He ignored the smudge of charcoal on the guy’s face. He waves his hand in salutation, “Konnichiwa. I’m Josh. Nice to meet you.” He tossed the packet on the vacant bed which was just around the bend from the bathroom. That was pretty good in case he needed to make a discreet retreat. He smiles, “I’d love to sit and chatter but my stuff isn’t going to be sprouting legs and coming here. Excuse me.”

He headed back down stairs and out the building to get his stuff. The task was helped by Takeo, his father, and Mariko, his mother. Both were slim unlike their son whose body shape was typical of Ishida men because his Uncle Kunio was similarly muscular. Josh did most of the carrying. It would be shameful if he hadn’t. His parents demurely introduced themselves. After dropping off the last box, they said their goodbyes. He walked his parents out of Selby Hall. In the front, they had one last hug before they got back in the SUV and left. By the time his folks got back home, it’d be time for bed.

Josh let out a puff of air and closed the door. “That’s that. What do I unpack first?” The question was more directed to himself. “Toiletries!” He set aside a small blue plastic crate. He placed his toothpaste and floss and mouthwash inside as well as his face mask paste, cologne and deodorant spray. Next to it, he plugged in his toothbrush. In a corner of the tub, he placed shampoo, soap, and conditioner. He asks while he set his stuff up, “Name? How do you want to be addressed? My name is Joshua, but only when I screw up. Otherwise, I’m Josh or Ryota, but my middle name was really only ever used by my teammates.” He exits the bathroom.

Next the bed sheets. He hadn’t had a bed this size in years but he still had his old sheets. The ones chosen for this journey: the mint green sheets and the Pac-Man sheets. Which one shall be first? He then made his choice. As he dresses the bed in the Pac-Man sheets, “I see you have a sketch pad. I draw also. I have a pad of my own in one of these boxes. I use pencil and ink, not charcoal." He taps a part of his face that corresponds to his roommate's face where the smudge is. "Sometimes, I will use the computer to spruce up my work and colorize occasionally.” He takes out a homemade blanket. One side is navy blue and the other has a star field pattern. Made by his Aunt Ayumi, it was shipped from Japan and given to him during his graduation party. He folds it across the foot of the bed.

Josh sets the mint green sheets on a shelf in the closet which is soon occupied with his garments and then he begins to set up his computer. The only items let are his personal effects like his calendar, but that can wait until later. For now, time to get to know the guy that he will be spending the school year with.
 
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Rihou

I love wolves!
"Hi.." Was all he could get out before his roommate left and came back bring his belongings into the dorm. He watched the other do that several times before he just turned to his sketch book and continued drawing, flipping to another page, this time with a different medium to draw with, a pencil. Matthew couldn't help but smile in amusement at his roommate talking to himself. I'm going to have to get use to that. The farm boy continued to draw until he was addressed by the other. "Huh?..." he was slightly confused at first. "Oh! Sorry... Dazed out." he said with a small laugh as he placed his sketch book and pencil down beside him.

"My name is Matthew. But others call me Matt or Mattie. I guess it just depends on what you like best. I'll answer to both." He was use to having mainly girls call him 'Mattie' but he had a few guys call him the nickname before as well, mainly as a joke or trying to tease him. But they quickly stopped once they saw it didn't bother him. He wasn't popular by any means, but he wasn't picked on. He would classify himself as the unpopular that knew almost everyone but didn't have very many friends. Of course now, in a new town and a new school, he didn't know anyone or have any friends so he was just... unpopular.

Teammates? Before he could ask, he saw Josh tape his own face, at first he was confused but then realized that the other was pointing something out on his face. Getting up off of his bed, Matthew moved to his mirror that he had on the wall by his desk. He would use the mirror for self-portraits when drawing at the desk. Seeing the smudge of his face, Matthew took the bottom of his grey cotton t-shirt and pulled it up to wipe his face. A bit of his abs showed a nice toned six pack, curtesy of working on a farm, "Thanks" he said once he made sure the charcoal was gone from his face, though now it was on the bottom of his shirt as he placed it back in place over his jeans.

"That's cool. Love to see your work sometime." he said finding it easier to talk with Josh after learning a common ground between them. "I use different mediums. Ink, Pencil, Charcoal though I'm not very good at it, still practicing. I also use marker, my favorite is the Copic, Tombow, and Ohuhu. Haven't really done anything with the computer yet." He said sitting back on his bed, realizing he still needed to unpack his markers and other art supplies, but he would do that later. "I also play some music, I don't sing, just play."

"Where you from?" he asked wanting to get to know the other since they'll be somewhat spending a lot of time together in the dorm. Might as well get to know the other.
 

Pokeking

New Member
Sitting on the bed, Josh undid the laces on his sneakers. They plopped onto the floor and the socks followed. He reclined against the headboard and wiggled his unshod toes, “Ooh. That feels good.” He looks at his new roommate, “Nice to meet you Matt.”

After Matt cleaned his face, he answered, “No prob. Just hope it comes out of the shirt. It’s like chocolate. Nothing gets chocolate out, but I digress. Looks like you work out also.” He noticed the hint of groomed abs. “I know that there’s a gym in the Athletic Center, but I don’t know how good it is and it is certainly not going to be open at all hours. Luckily, I was able to get my gym card upgraded to a universal pass. An upcharge, but gladly paid.”

He popped open the lid of the last box, the one with his knickknacks like his plush potato with the googly eyes and a perpetual smile. At the bottom was his most recent sketchpad. His others were home, but he had scanned the images from those. “Tada!” He sets it on the nearby chair.

He grinned, “I like music but I neither play nor sing. I just listen. I can sing, but you wanna wear some muffs first. Supposedly, I sing better in Japanese than in English.” Josh chortles and then quiets as he’s asked where he comes from.

“Houston. Born and raised. Lots to see and do. I love it, but I like small towns also. Every now and then, me and my parents will just get in the SUV and go on a little jaunt. There are plenty of small towns within a few hours to spend the night. I love the stars and don’t often get to see the multitudes.” He sighs in contentment. He opens the packet and starts to complete the forms. There is a vehicle registration form that he needs to turn in so he can get a sticker, then the emergency contact form. There are other forms, but are mostly informational. One is about is styled as a welcome meeting which takes place tonight. Mandatory, but well worth it. Meet staff and residential advisors. Raffle for a variety of small prizes, namely gift cards. Plus refreshments. Yippee! “How ‘bout you? What part of our world you call home.”
 

Rihou

I love wolves!
Matthew smiled and laughed a bit, "Oh I don't go to the gym." he said. "This is all from working on the farm back home in Kansas. I live in small town south of Dodge. Just me, my parents and two siblings, my younger sister and older brother. My sister is still in high school and my brother stayed at the farm to help my dad and also to eventually take over." Also opening his packet and began going through it and filling out whatever form needed filling. "So you speak Japanese? That's cool. Have you ever been to Japan?" he asked finding it intriguing that his roommate was bi-lingual. "I don't speak any other language myself. Unless animal talk counts?" he said with a a grin as he finished the forms and stood up from his bed. "Well, better get this thing over with." he said talking about the mandatory gathering of meeting the staff and making friends.
 

Pokeking

New Member
Josh nodded, “Farm, huh. Never been to a farm before. I guess it’s like yard work. I help my parents in the yard a lot. I do the bulk of the work. Carry bags of mulch, mow the lawn, and more. I’m an only child. It’s just us three. We don’t even have pets.”

Josh said, “Yup. I’m fully fluent in both languages all the way around.” He opened his mouth and mentioned in Japanese that he and his parents spoke it predominantly in the home. Back in English, “I’m a big draw at school because gamers come across articles from Japan and they ask me to translate for them. I went to Japan for the first time some weeks ago and it was awesome. I love being an American, don’t get me wrong, but seeing all the signage in Japanese was heartwarming as well as speaking with others besides just family. I knew we were going, but my folks wanted to toss in a surprise. It didn’t quite work out that way though because I realized that I was packing more clothes than days listed in the itinerary. Dad has an older sister who is four years older. I thought our family was going to have dinner with them. Nope, we stayed with them for a week. I have two cousins. Maiko is two years older than me while Daisuke and I are the same age but I’m 18 days older than him. Dad was born and raised in Japan and came stateside to study but he and Mom kicked it off right away.”

Josh reflected, “On Mom’s side, it’s my aunt and uncle and my cousin Tyler who’s three. Grandpa Kent is Nisei, second generation, and was interned along with thousands of others.” Here he noticeably paused. “He got out though and served as an interpreter on the Pacific Front. He just retired last year and he bequeathed his tags to me.” He reached under his searched and showed them which displayed the name of Ishida, Kentaro. He then slipped them back inside.

“Huh? Get this thing over with?” Josh looked at his watch and at the welcome meeting. “It’s just 2pm. Meeting is at 7pm or 1900 if you enjoy 24 hour style. Plenty of time to take the shower I missed out on this morning and then go grocery shopping to stock the mini-fridge. Wanna come with?” He reached behind his head and pulled off the black hair band. Foop! His hair fell down to his shoulders and he got off the bed to go to the dresser where he took out a pair of briefs. He turned to Matt, “No pressure and you don’t have answer right away. Just think about it.”

Josh headed around the bed and entered the door. The light came on and the door locked behind him. Soon, the sound of the cascade.
 

Rihou

I love wolves!
Getting to know Josh was to say the least interesting as Matthew watched the other go take a shower. But he did learn a lot about the other in the short duration of their conversation and he found himself liking his roommate. I'll definitely get a long with him I think. Seeing that it was the time that Josh had mentioned, he didn't realize it was still early, it felt like to was later in the day than that. Shrugging it off, Matthew decided to unpack the rest of his boxes that held his art supplies, meticulously setting them up on his desk in a certain order. His most used mediums on display on the desk against the wall leaving enough room for him to also spread out on the table. He less used mediums in drawer that he had set up under the desk to the side. Placing his different sketch books on the table. Once he was done with that, he felt better seeing his art supplies on display. They were his pride and joy.

Looking around his side of the room, He spotted the packet that he left on his bed and picked them up, placing them on his desk. He may be a farm boy, but he was a clean farm boy and didn't like leaving things on the floor or dirtying up a room. He preferred things clean and put away. Looking over to Josh's side of the room, his roommate definitely had some interesting taste in things. Much different than himself, but he didn't mind that. He liked that they were different but also had some things in common as well.

He wasn't use to taking showers in the middle of the day, so he opted to just change his clothes. Picking out another pair of jeans and a clean white t-shirt before pulling on a long sleeve light blue paid shirt. Sitting on the bed, pulled his boots on before he began to roll his sleeves up to his elbows.
 

Pokeking

New Member
Was Josh a clean freak? Maybe? Seemingly? He did wash his hands quite frequently and he was always one of the first, if not the first, to head to the showers after Coach Hayes adjourned the team meeting after practice or a game. Every now and then was the comment, “Why does it smell like wet dog in here?” Sorry guys, I can’t help it. It’s just that time of the month.

He lathered with his soap and shampoo and conditioner. Josh loved his shower water warm, very warm. He made sure every bit of him was good and clean before he turned the faucets off, stepped out and toweled off. Psst, psst. Psst, psst. Cologne applied and deodorant added. Fresh undies on and he put his clothes back on. Lights off and he stepped back in. “Ah. That felt nice. I usually shower in the mornings, but I was eager to get on the road.”

Josh stepped in front of his mirror and combed his hair. His hair used to not be so long. As a kid, he sported a crew cut. However, he started to grow his hair out in the seventh grade. He had seen pictures of samurai with their topknots and he wanted his hair to look something like that. “I went to Catholic schools all my years of education and we wore uniforms. I wanted to grow my hair out but my parents weren’t sure if the dress code allowed it. Thankfully, it was. I like my hair like this.” He gathered his hair in one hand and picked up a hair band in the other. He pulled his hair back tightly, folded it, and pushed it through the band to secure it.

Josh turned to Matt, “Looks like you would like to go.” He picked his wallet up and made sure he had everything he needed in there and claimed his keys. “We can go in my truck. Ready?”
 

Rihou

I love wolves!
Looking up at Josh as he came out of the shower, he then realized just how long Josh's hair was. Matthew saw it when the other took his hair out before going to the shower, but never paid much attention. "Ah... I just want to regular ol' public school. My parents couldn't afford private or religious schools. I'm lucky to be here with the scholarship and grant I got." He had gotten it through his art and music he did in high school. His teachers talked him into applying for the programs and the scholarships and grants he applied too accepted his application. He was the first in his family to ever go to college. But he knew he wouldn't be the only one, his sister wanting to go for a psych major of all things when she graduates high school.

"Looks good on you." He said commenting on the hair. It really did, not many men could pull it off with having long hair and having it looks decent or good. "Yeah, I wouldn't mind goin' " he said as he stood up, grabbing his wallet and placing it in his back pocket, as well as grabbing his own keys and putting them in his front pocket.

Walking out of the room with Josh, "So you play sports? You mentioned teammates before. Going to try out for a team?" he asked walking down the hall with the other.
 

Pokeking

New Member
Josh felt his hair, “I get a trim every three months, more or less. I’ll probably get an inch or inch and half trim next time I go.” He sighed, “Eventually, I’ll have to cut it all off and go back to my crew cut. I think of the type of career I’m interested in and I don’t think this hair style fits. My mom and uncle are big on law enforcement and Dad’s a scientist. I’m interested in becoming a forensic scientist in either a local capacity or with a federal agency. I’m also taking a minor in Astronomy. How about you? What are you studying?"

“Teammates? Ah, funny story about that. I have a best buddy back home. Brett McPherson’s his name. Blond hair in the curtained style, vibrant blue eyes, and a build just like mine. If our faces were the same, you’d think we were twins. He’s an only child also and lives next block over. Since we were both had no siblings, we hung out lots. Go catch a game, watch movies, and more. He’s big on football and always has been. My parents only go to the gym for stuff like yoga. Never much cared for it. I’d just spend the time at the treadmill or the bicycle machine. Brett uses those too, but he likes to work the weights also. My parent’s work schedules are really hectic and my grandparents aren’t always available, so I would hang out with him and his folks regularly which included visits to the gym. We would take turns spotting each other.”

Exiting the dorm building, “Wind the clock back four years. It’s Freshmen year. He pleads with me to go with him to watch him try out. I go with him and we blindly chitchat and before we know it, we are at the registration desk. The guy didn’t even wait to be asked what position. He blurted out that he was trying out for quarterback. The coach asked me what I wanted to try for. He thought I was there to try out. I could have said that I was just there to watch my friend, but nope. I said that I wanted to try for running back. I was really good despite never having played and I got in.” He let out a puff of frustrated air, “My parents were pissed to the extreme. Why didn’t I ask them beforehand? What if I hurt…what if I get hurt? The storm was brief though. I explained that it was a spur of the moment. I thought they were going to make me tell the coach that I changed my mind. That didn’t happen. I would be an adult eventually and would need to learn to live with my choices. They said that they might not understand my choices but would be supportive.”

Here is Josh’s truck, formerly Uncle Kunio's. It is red and there are various decals attached to the rear window: the logo of his high school displaying the face of a raven, the flag of the United States next to the flag of Japan, and an emblem consisting of a tree and the initials AF beneath which was a sticker distributed by his neighborhood. He opened the door and looked at Matt, “Talent scouts tried to recruit me, but I declined them. I just didn’t see myself playing college ball. Brett on the other hand declared himself for LSU.”

Josh opened the door and set his phone down beneath the AC controls. He pressed the ignition and the stereo began playing the last thing he had it on. It starts playing a song by Nova Dream, a popular J-Pop boy band. Aware that he wasn’t alone, he switches it to another playlist and Johnny Cash starts singing.
 
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Rihou

I love wolves!
Listening to Josh, "That's cool. To have a friend like that. I didn't have many friends back home. Mainly stuck to myself, school, homework, then home helping on the farm." he said as they climbed into Josh's truck. "Nice truck." he commented before finishing his thought. "Got a truck of my own. It's just an old beater truck, but it gets me from point A to point B. '84 Chevy. Not much, I bought it from our neighbor and got it working." Matthew chuckled, "Of course when I say neighbor, he lived like, five miles down the road. It was just sitting there for the longest time. I'm surprised he agreed to sell it to me, but he did. I worked on that thing for almost my whole high school career. Middle of my senior year, I finally got it start and running." Laughing at the memory.

"I was almost afraid that I wouldn't get it to start. But I had my brother and dad help when they could. Got some busted hands and fingers working on it, that's for sure." Watching Josh mess with his radio, Matthew then looked out at the window.
 

Pokeking

New Member
Josh wistfully nodded, “Yea. Brett’s a great guy. I didn’t have many friends growing up because my parents were very protective. School time with peers was okay, but birthday parties and sleepovers were out of the question. Brett was the first one I could call friend and hang out with. Grandpa Kent would pick me up from school and I would stay with my grandparents until Dad or Mom picked me up. I would do my homework, but what was there to do when I finished? No playing with friends for me. There wasn’t much to do so I began to draw. My first subjects were shows or comics I read and progressed from there.”

The grocery store loomed ahead, “When I got bored of drawing, I would sit in the kitchen watching my grandma cook until one day she got annoyed and said that it didn’t do me any good to just sit there and watch. If I was going to be in the kitchen, I should help. She didn’t mean stuff like work the stove or oven or use knives, but I could help take out supplies like the flour or measuring cups. It’s how I began to read, honestly. I opened her cookbooks and would look at the pictures. How do you make those delicious tarts? So instead of starting with toddler books, the cookbooks were my foundation.”

They pulled into the parking lot and he stopped the truck. “I don’t have a list with me but I have a general idea what I’m looking for. Nothing too complicated or too perishable. I’m looking for drinks like lemonade, iced tea, root beer and snacks like crackers or jerky. I would hate to have late night munchies and we have to go out.”
 

Rihou

I love wolves!
Matthew nodded, Josh had completely thrown him for a loop. He had him pegged as the classic jock type, then just from the brief time talking with him, he's the complete opposite. Still a jock, but not your stereotypical jock. "I guess I had your average up bringing..." he commented as they pulled up the the store.

Walking into the store with Josh, "Glad one of us knows how to cook. My mom never let me in her kitchen. She'd say I would burn water if I attempted to cook anything."

"That's alright, I don't mind snack food. I can make a mean top-ramen though..." He said with a small grin. "Meet you at the check out?" he said before wandering off by himself down the isles. He went straight for the chips followed by top-ramen and bottled water, getting a couple cases of it both for drinking and cooking if they wanted too. This also gave Matthew time to gather his thoughts as well. Getting to know Josh was easy, the other was being pretty open with him. A lot more open then he has been, but then there were things that just wasn't to be discussed. Like me being gay...and finding your roommate to be a hot jock...a nice hot jock. He wanted to be friends and nice with Josh, but he was a bit afraid of when his roommate would find out his sexual orientation. Some guys were just weirded out by it and some weren't.

He was lucky to have his family support him, though it took awhile for them to get use to the fact that he was into the same sex. So it was easy to find Josh attractive, and the other was making it easy for Matthew to like him as well. Whether friendship or other. Friendship obviously being the first option for the moment. They just met, no need to jump ahead when not warranted.

Grabbing a few other things from different isles, Matthew started to make his way over to the check-out counter to purchase the item he got.
 

Pokeking

New Member
Meet at checkout. “Right.” Josh jerked his head in acknowledgement.

He could near imagine himself on the TV screen with the voice of Sir David Attenborough, “Among the sea of humanity, the Ryota lycanthrope stalks the supermarket habitat. He first browses the fruits and vegetables. Only prime specimens are chosen.”

Josh goes up and down the aisles. This first visit is just to reconnoiter because he doesn’t know this store. He looks over the produce to study the quality. Back home, the responsibility of going grocery shopping fell upon him almost all the time. Taking into consideration the limited capacity of the mini-fridge, he picked out a bag of Mandarin oranges and a bag of crasins. He then left the area. Attenborough again, “The Ryota lycanthrope spends most of his time around the meat and fish counters. Although he eats cooked products like the human, his body can readily process raw meat. He rarely gets the chance though. Rarer still, live prey.”

Every now and then, Josh sees Matt going about his shopping. He picks up a crate of bottled sweet tea and then one with bottles of water. He also gets a six pack of root beer bottles. There are aisles that contain nothing for him to get like pet food. He concludes his shopping by getting a bag of walnuts.

While he shopped, Josh thought about Matt. He’s a great guy, but what are the odds that he’s also attracted to guys. He was very sheltered growing up. Swears were kept away and he didn’t even know what the word gay was, unbelievable that may seem. However, around the age of 12, he knew that he wasn’t developing the same feelings as his male peers. The feelings became more vibrant as the years past. It was during the interlude between his Freshman and his Sophomore years that he decided to take a leap of faith.

Josh’s parents weren’t too surprised because they saw the way their son looked at other guys. For the past few years, they had waited and watched. His orientation became just another facet of his identity. All they ever wanted for their son was for him to be happy and safe. He then expanded his openness. Brett was the first outside of his family to know this new truth.

“Really?” His best friend looked at him with uncertainty. “Yea.” Brett rolled his eyes, “I had no idea you felt that way. Do you have feelings for me?” Josh looked away. The attraction he had for his best friend was strong. His reluctance to admit his feelings proved stronger, but he looked at his best friend. “I do. Does that make you feel uncomfortable?” Brett shook his head, “Mon Dieu Ryota. You’re my best friend. Why should it bother me? I’d be concerned if you didn’t.” He had a brief chuckle, “Another time and another place, we’d be promoting our status from best buddies to boyfriends. You’re wonderful, but I just can’t return the same feelings.” Eventually, quickly, word spread that Josh was gay. It knocked him down a few pegs in the eyes of some and he feared being kicked off the team. His comrades were reluctant to have him on the team now, but Coach Hayes intervened. In his eyes, orientation was irrelevant. Do you have talent on the field? Do you make good enough grades to remain on the team? That is what mattered to him and since Josh fulfilled both requirements, he stays. Did anyone quit over Coach’s decision? No.

Back in the now, Josh passed his debit card through the machine to pay for his purchases. He saw Matt nearby and saw that he had several purchases also. He waved, “Did you find what you were looking for?”
 
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Rihou

I love wolves!
Looking at Josh, Matthew had just finished purchasing his items when the other came up. "Yep." he said giving a smile. "Even found some pancake mix. When mom wasn't home, that's about the only thing I could cook. Of course I always cleaned everything up before she would get back home. If she asked I would just say my sister made it. She has somewhat of an old fashioned mentality. The kitchen is a woman's domain and no made should enter unless getting something to drink." he said laughing a bit a the memory of his mother lecturing him.

"So my sister took me to buy a griddle and few other things to make cooking a bit easier for me when I came here. Of course she made me buy it all. " He said pausing slightly. "Which...I still have to unpack." Wondering if he unpack it or not, he didn't remember. Somewhat of a short attention span, specially when he gets caught up in sketching or.... talking with hot jocks. Shut up! He's probably not even into guys! Friends!! Think Friends!! You need friends stupid!

"What about you? Find everything you were looking for?" he questioned the other looking at the stuff in Joshua's arms.
 

Pokeking

New Member
Josh mulled over what Matt said about the kitchen, “Dad and I didn’t have much choice. My mom’s an Assistant District Attorney back home and her hours are all over the place. We’d have to do pick-up most of the time. It’s fine every now and then, but the crowds and the noise gets to me sometimes. Casseroles are a boon. Week before last, I made chicken enchiladas. I stripped the chicken off the bone and cut up the onion and pulverized the spinach. In the bowl it goes and the sauced. I took these hands of mine and kneaded the ingredients until well blended. Stuff the tortillas. Sauce, then cheese, sauce again, and more cheese. Got four good meals out of it.” I’m drooling again. He pressed his mouth against his sleeve to clean himself.

Pancake griddle? “Pancakes are okay, but I prefer the crispness of waffles. There used to be this fabulous place around the corner from my house that made excellent waffles. We’d go there after church if we went on Sunday. It was independently owned, not part of a chain. I think you lose something with large chain restaurants. It closed last fall and it felt like a punch to the gut when I found out.” Josh sighed. Over the years he had lost a number of favorite restaurants which were similarly independent, but that one’s loss stung more because an eatery that served breakfast was rare.

Josh looks in his cart and back at Matt. “Mission complete. There were lots of other things I wanted to get, but the mini fridge can’t possibly hold everything. I went with stuff that doesn’t need immediate refrigeration.”

Back at the truck, “We have plenty of time to put the stuff away and relax before it’s time to head down. Maybe we can look at each other’s artwork or watch TV while we wait. I think that we need to head down early to the main lounge for the meeting. I’m thinking at least 15 minutes till. What do you think?”
 
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Rihou

I love wolves!
"Yeah, we can do that. I don't mind being early. Kind of prefer it actually." he said as he placed his items in the back of Josh's truck before climbing in. "I'd like to see what you sketch. I'm working on landscapes and animals at the moment. One of the classes I'm in, it already has an assignment. I have to sketch out a logo for myself. So I'm sketching out something to deal with my last name. That's why working on animals. Wolves actually, my last name... Wolf. But I can't decide was pose I want it. Either the classical moon howling, or something else... I don't know." he said rambling on about his art assignment.

"What do yo draw?"

When they got back to the dorm and unloaded everything to it's proper place, Matthew got his sketch book and then plopped down on his bed. Opening to a page where he had different head shots on wolves, howling, snarling, plain frontal and side views. He show it to Josh. "See, I can't decide... Not really sure what I'm going to do. And I have to color it! I was thinking a black wolf, but... they don't really have an definition as far as art goes, so I was thinking maybe a grey or red wolf..."
 

Pokeking

New Member
His last name is Wolf? What are the odds? It’s like the founding members of ZZ Top. Two guys have beards and the third one has no beard but his name is Beard. Here, we have Matt with the name of Wolf and I am a wolf. The coincidence was pretty funny, but perhaps too much, because Josh’s cheeks started to bulge as they fought to contain the laughter.

Josh cleared his throat, “Sorry. I was thinking about the stuff I’ve drawn. My theme is random trippiness because I've drawn a variety of things. I've done fanart, fantasy scenes, scifi stuff, comical art, and more. I was just thinking about the few pieces of fanart I've done about the Three Stooges and you know how funny they are. Nothing with Shemp though. Never cared for Shemp. I prefer the classic lineup.”

Back in the room and once the foodstuffs were stored away, Josh got one of his pads and pulled his chair over to Matt’s bed. He had briefly considered sitting on the bed with his roommate, but thought that Matt might have about personal distance. “Personally, I’d go with a black furred wolf. I could…” Damn, I almost said I could shift and model for him. I’ve never been that close to revealing my other face, not even with Brett. That's twice now in such a short amount of time. “I mean I would go with the grey wolf if not the black. Not really a fan of reddish wolves though because they remind me too much of foxes. Let’s see poses. I don’t like snarling, but howling’s fun. I think the logo should be one that isn’t really tied to an emotion since it is a logo. Maybe half front, half side. Like this.” Josh turns his head to the side but slightly still looking straight ahead.

Josh’s pad rest on his lap as he patiently waits his turn to show the smorgasbord that is his art.
 
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Rihou

I love wolves!
Matthew listened to Josh, "Yeah? You think?" he asked as Josh told him a pose he hadn't even thought of. "I'll have to try it, see how it looks." he said as he took his book back and set it to the side. "I see know what you mean with the red wolves. I personally like the black wolves better, they... what's the word..." Matthew pause to think a bit. "They're more... intense? Regal. They stand out more than your average grey. All that black fur surrounding those amber eyes. Just something about them. They're gorgeous." Then Matthew smiled a a thought came to his head. "Oh fun fact if you didn't know it. Wolves can't bark like a dog. They don't have the capability to. Yip, scream, howl, all the other noises they can do just not bark. I thought that was kind of cool when I found out."

He could go on an on about wolves if he really wanted to. Probably another small hobby of his that he doesn't reveal almost always. So why was he telling Josh? Matthew didn't dwell on it too much longer. His passion was music and art, but he also wanted to work with the conservationist with wolves and study them, or maybe be an artist but sketch the wolves in real life? He really wasn't sure what he wanted to do yet, that's what college is for right?

"Well, Lets see your work." he said nodding his head to Josh's sketch pad. He never questions why the other didn't sit on his bed with him and he didn't ponder on the why either.
 

Pokeking

New Member
Intense? Regal? I don’t think those words exactly fit me. People say that I’m quiet and reserved.

“Just the passage of the eons I guess. Humans have bred dogs for centuries for a variety of tasks. Corral sheep, ferret out prey, or just simply lie upon laps and look pretty. Think how different dogs look from each other. We have huskies that look very wolf-like and then there is the dachshund which doesn’t even look like the other two. Speaking of the dachshund…”

Josh opens up his pad and thumbs through the pages, “I call this one A Real Hot Dog. There are people that dress dachshunds in hot dog bun costumes. I took it to its logical extreme. I gave the hot dog wiener a dog face and tail. The feet are part of the bun. The hot dog leaps up to try to catch a pickle slice which doubles as a Frisbee.

Turn the page, “This one is called Mount Nakayama. It’s a play on my name because yama means mountain in Japanese. I’ve patterned it after Mount Rushmore. Dad’s face is where George Washington’s, Mom is where Lincoln’s face is. Mine is in the middle, repositioned because it is just three faces.” Turn the page, “I also draw a variety of yokai, creatures from Japanese folklore. Here are a group of kappa having a pool party.” Another page, "Here's me arm wrestling an oni. I decided to be fair and make us evenly matched so it could go either way."

Josh thumbs through more pages, “I’ve drawn plenty of me and Brett. It helps that we have the same body shape when I start the process. This is called Against the Legion.” Here, Josh wears mystical samurai armor colored cobalt blue while dual-wielding a katana and a wakizashi. Next to him is Brett who wears jeans and a white tee as well as a sleeveless hoodie of the same color. His hands ripple with magical energies. Careful attention is paid to the musculature of the young men as they steel themselves against an unseen adversary. Another page with another drawing, “I name this one A Whole New Game. It’s fanart based on Tron Legacy, but with me and him. We have on bodysuits like they wear on the Grid and we’re holding our identity discs as we stand back to back."

Josh browses the pages of his art with eyes of affectionate reflection, “I have vivid dreams every now and then. A good portion finds their way to the sketch pad.” One page has a tan-furred minotaur plucking the strings of a lyre while he sits on a wooden bench. A second page depicts an anthropomorphic gorilla wearing clothing similar to Clint Eastwood’s Man with No Name. He appears to be posing for a trading card. In all his art, background scenery is sparse or nonexistent. “I don’t do backgrounds too much. Did your school have a journal that students and staff contributed to where they could contribute artwork and short stories and poems? Ours was called Visions. Brett suggested I contribute, but I was reluctant because I’m a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to my art. I’m afraid to goof, that it won’t turn out good, but objective people have said my artwork is top notch. Still, I work on just one drawing anywhere from two to four weeks. It's another reason why you hardly see backgrounds from me. So for the first edition of Visions I was able to contribute to, I submitted a drawing which was of a pair of dancing cupcakes in our school colors.”

Josh looks up at the clock. It is nearly time to head down to the main lounge. “Almost time.” He puts his socks and shoes back on. There’s nothing worse than having to scramble at the last minute.
 
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Rihou

I love wolves!
Looking at Josh's art work, Matthew was to say the least, impressed. "Wow, these are really good! The detail is amazing!" he said as Josh showed and told him about his work. He looked at the one with both him and his friend Brett. Matthew couldn't help but feel a bit jealous at the close relationship they had. Wish I had a friend like that. Before he knew it, it was still to get ready for the mandatory meeting. "Yeah, my school wasn't big enough for anything like a journal or school newspaper."

Standing up from his bed, Matthew put his sketch book back on his desk, he hadn't taken off his shoes or socks. "I'll meet you down there." he said leaving the dorm and walking down the hall. Josh is a great artist and very open about himself. He makes it hard not to like him. Matthew knew if they continued to get close and getting to know each other, that he was going to develop a crush on the guy. Not even 24 hours of meeting the other and Matthew almost instantly took to the guy. Sighing, Matthew knew it was hopeless and quickly vanished the thought from his mind knowing it was a lost cause. Who would want a guy like you anyway...

Reaching the main lounge, Matthew followed the crowd and stood off towards the back. He wasn't really much of a social person, usually kept to himself.
 

Pokeking

New Member
I thought we were going down together. Josh said softly trying not to convey the feeling of disappointment, “Okay. See you down there.” He gets his keys and his resident packet and heads out the door.

The young man lumbered down the hallway wondering if he said or did something wrong. “Was I too much in your face about Brett? About my schooling? Am I being haughty?” No one knew this is what he was asking himself as he passed by residents. All they saw was an Asian guy babbling to himself in Japanese. He was so lost in his head, that he missed the turn and had to backtrack.

The lounge was busy even though there was plenty of time before the scheduled start time. Apparently I wasn’t the only one who had the early bird idea. His nostrils flared and his head homed in on the refreshments. Boxes and boxes of pizza alongside cans of soda, a bowl full of punch, and a cooler dispensing tea. He made a beeline towards it but never made it. “Yo! Manbun guy! Over here.”

Josh turns his head. Figures. A cluster of young men wave him over. He doesn’t see Matt yet and he would hate being by himself, “One moment.” He dashes to the table and gets three slices of pizza and a bottle of soda. As he makes his way back, desiring eyes are upon him and the other jocks. As he compares stats with them, girls try to get their attention. The guys forget their conversation and make sappy faces while showing off their biceps. Not Josh who turns and sees Matt off in the back. By himself. He casually tells them, “Excuse me.” They look dumbfounded as he withdrew, a voice calls for attention before he reaches his roommate.

“Can I have everyone’s attention?” Heads turn while they dine. “My name is Zebulon Wicker. I am the lead director of Selby Hall. I’d like to welcome each and everyone. No need to come up right now to hand over your packets. There will be time to turn them in after the meeting and if you forgot yours in your room, we’ll be here for thirty minutes after we adjourn as well as tomorrow in the office.” He then introduces the rest of the dorm staff and for the next hour, Mr. Wicker goes over resident rules, rights, and responsibilities. First the serious and now the fun. He goes over upcoming events. Every Saturday is movie night and every first Saturday doubles as a birthday party for residents celebrating their special day in that month. Josh’s special day was October 13, born on a Friday.

The meeting is adjourned and residents slip back into the chatter. Josh resumes his way back to Matt, “After I turn in my packet, I’m heading back up to our room. I’ve had my fill of crowd for today.” He looks into his roommate’s eyes tenderly, “Okay?”

Josh turns his packet in and he waits for Matt by the double door that leads the way back to corridor that will take them back to their room.
 

Rihou

I love wolves!
Watching the crowd, Matthew felt uncomfortable, so he continued to stand at the back leaning against the wall. He couldn't believe that being from a small town to going to another small town would be any different. Boy was he wrong, this small town was big. Looking at everyone coming in, Matthew had spotted Josh coming in and felt bad. He knew they were suppose to come down together. He also knew eventually once they began classes Josh would go off with his sport buddies, making friends and Matthew would only see him in their dorm...maybe.

Looking up at the stage when the director began speaking, he didn't notice Josh had been moving towards him until it was the end of Mr. Wicker's speech. Blinking in surprise at seeing Josh, Matthew couldn't help but blush at the look in Josh's eyes. " 'Kay..." he said in a soft voice watching the guy walk off to turn in his packet. Letting out a breath that he didn't realize he was holding, Matthew hung around for another minute before making his way up to the table to turn in his own packet over to the staff. Matthew turned and began to walk towards the double doors to leave, crowds really weren't his things.

He paused at seeing Josh by the doors. Matthew was surprised seeing the other, he really didn't expect the other to still be there. Walking towards the other, "I thought you were going back to dorm?" he said as they begin walking back to said dorm. "So you're not one for crowds either?"
 

Pokeking

New Member
Josh looks back at the crowd one last time before he exits. The jocks are still there and they take one last look at him. They flex their arms to show off their biceps which they point at before point at him. Insistent aren’t they. Oh, fine then. Josh tugs his sleeve back and flexes. His bicep, 15 inches round, inflates. Satisfied, they go about their business and he leaves with Matt. “I was going back to the room, but I wanted us to go together.”

Along the hallway, “Crowd tolerance depends on my mood, number of people, size of the room, as well as decibel level. I don’t mind crowds at the gym or during games though. Regular games only had a few hundred in attendance, but try performing in front of 10,000. Back to back State Championships in my Junior and Senior year which we played in a professional sports arena. Sensory overload, I tell you what. The roar of the audience and all the snap, crackle, pop of professional football. One of the reasons why I chose to not go to a major college to play college ball.”

The room is in sight, “When I was 12 years, my parents and I headed up north to Dallas for the Ishida-O’Connell wedding when Uncle Kunio married Aunt Susan. Wedding was fine and so was the reception but as the night wore on, I started to feel boxed in. My parents could tell I was becoming anxious. So they tossed me the room key and I headed up.”

As soon as he got back into the room, he felt better. Unlikely to eat again for the rest of the day, he began to brush his teeth. He returned to the room and got out his pajamas which consisted of a tank and red basketball shorts with black trim, the colors of the Houston Rockets. He absentmindedly peels off his clothes until his cargo shorts are halfway down his knees when he remembers that he’s not alone, “Sorry.” He quickly pulls his shorts back up, grabs his sleepwear and changes in the bathroom.

Josh goes the closet to get out his mat. “I mediate on a regular basis, just so you know.” He rolls it on the floor and gets out his earbuds. He picks up his phone and selects his meditation playlist. Mostly Gregorian chants and miscellaneous tones, but a plethora of newly added Shinto chants from Cousin Daisuke who often volunteers at the local shrine. He sits on the mat cross-legged and looks at Matt, “No pressure Matt, but if you have ever have anything on your mind and want to talk, my ears are here. Just think about it.” He slides in the buds. His breathing slows and rest his hands on his knees in contemplation.
 

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