Can't by Lute
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Can't


I can't touch him.
I just can't. If I do, I'll... do things. And I won't be able to help myself.
He tries to manipulate me. He asks me to go places with him, sell with him, share his bed at night... but I can't do it. Especially the bed.
I just can't.
I don't want to be that way. People die when they're like that. And I don't want to die. I'm only seventeen.
But he makes it so hard. Sometimes, I think it would be worth it. That is would be okay to die because at least I died with my needs satiated. It's not like I have much of a future anyway.
But I can't touch him. I can't lose myself to his sweet face. I can't let my heart get ahead of my mind.
I can't.
I can't.
I can't!
But I want to! I want to so badly! I want to go places with him, sell with him, share his bed. I want it so much I can feel my skin tingle when he walks by, and my fingers itch to just reach out and grab him, drag him into an alley and let instinct take over.
I think he'd let me.
That scares me too.
I don't even completely understand why it's him. He's a child. Or maybe not a child; I only have a year on him. But he acts like a child: sweet, naive, confused, charming. He laughs a lot, and he's ticklish. He sucks his thumb like a three year-old.
But he listens. And he thinks on a different level from others; he's insightful.
And he's beautiful.
Don't even get me started on how beautiful he is.
But I can't do anything about it. About what I want to do. Because I can't be that way.
Even though I am.
I can't help it.

~*~*~

"Skittery! Hey, Skittery!"
He turns, his dark eyes cast downwards, his fingers nervously tugging on the brim of his cap. "Yeah?"
"You wanna sell with me today?" A beaming, hopeful face watches him expectantly, certain that today is the day, the day he will finally say-
"No," he says. "I can't today, Snitch."
"You never can," the other pouts; he's cute when he does this, pursing his lips and tucking his chin into his neck. "You's always got other things to do."
"Sorry, Snitch." He loves saying the other's name. "But I can't."
"Why not?"
He grins. "I got other things to do."
The young one pouts again. "What other things?"
"Other things," he says, shrugging.
"Aw, c'mon, Skittery." A hand on his shoulder makes him stiffen. "Just today. Please?"
He tries to fight it, but he can't. The want has built up inside him for too long to let this go.
He leans over and catches the other's mouth with his own.
The young one hesitates, then kisses back.
The sensation makes them forget, and as their tongues slip past each other, the elder's mind creates a mantra:
I can't but I am I can't but I am I can't but I am...
I can't but I am!
He wants to stop, but he also wants to stay here forever. They're touching, groping, feeling. He thinks he's losing his mind; he can't keep a coherent thought in his head.
The other is trying to pull back; no doubt he's scared. But he's enjoying himself; the elder can feel that enjoyment against his leg, and he's sure the other can tell how much he's enjoying it.
They finally separate twenty minutes later, breathing hard, shining with sweat, safe in the dark corners of an alleyway. It's hard to part, so they don't do it fully; just their mouths. Their foreheads, chests and eyes stay locked, their fingers, arms and legs tangled. They are one being in two bodies for this brief moment s they stare at one another, lost in bewildered joy.
"We gotta get up," Snitch breathes. "We gotta go sell."
Skittery, who is on top, stays where he is.
"C'mon, Skittery. We gotta move."
Skittery grins. "But Snitch," he says quietly. "I can't."


END