"Well, how's it going with the ex?" Ravi asked as soon and Nick met up with him at the noisy arcade.
"Ex?" Nick looked at him as if he didn't know what he was talking about. Then he remembered. "Oh, oh, just fine." He nodded wondering if he was suppose to make up something about Kelsey or not. He really didn't feel like discussing Heath with him. After all, they were there to play games. Take their mind off classes.
"I'm suppose to go to the Funny Bone with some girls I met at dinner last night at the cafeteria. Do you want to come?" Ravi asked after they'd played a few games of foosball.
"No, I don't think so." Nick shook his head.
"So are you seeing someone?" Ravi smiled.
"No, um, kind of." He let slip.
"Really? Did I meet her?" He wanted to guess.
"No." Nick made a funny face and kind of laughed. "We don't go that many places, Ravi."
"I know, you never want to go anywhere." Ravi reminded him. "You probably met her online." He looked perturbed then. "Just don't tell me you met her on Craig's list, some awful things happen on Craig's list."
"Stop worrying." Nick grinned, but by the intense look Ravi was giving him he knew Ravi was worried. "Look, if I told you something, you might- I dunno, not feel the same way about me. I just-"
"What is it?" Ravi winced as he bought them drinks so they could sit out of the game area.
Nick wasn't sure if he could tell him. He hadn't breathed a word to anyone, and yet it was killing him not to talk about Heath. He wanted to share it with someone. Except, Ravi might not want to hang out with him.
"I'm seeing a guy." Nick gritted, wanting to smile, but wouldn't.
"A guy?" Ravi squinted as if perhaps he didn't hear him correctly. He just stared at Nick for a moment. "Well?"
"I've never done anything like this before." Nick hugged himself as if he might make himself sick discussing this with Ravi.
Ravi nodded. "What made you decide to do it?"
"That's a hard question." Nick smiled. "Believe me, I didn't think I would. I mean, I've felt bad about a lot of things for a long time. You know, I kept thinking, what's wrong with me? And I could never figure it out. I always felt I was doing everything the way my parents would want me to do it, or my peers at school. It was always that way. And then I got into some trouble with this girl in high school. She'd said I'd raped her when all along it was, actually, the other way around." Nick gritted a scowl then. It was making Nick nervous telling him this stuff.
"Did you go to jail?" Ravi wondered.
"No, no it was, you know, just one of those things where I ended up doing community service." Nick sighed.
"And now you're dating a guy." Ravi smiled.
"Um, yeah." Nick wasn't sure he wanted to tell anyone he had a guy in his room.
"Where did you meet him?"
"Why do you want to know all this stuff?" Nick found himself laughing.
"You're my friend," Ravi told him. "I care about you."
"I met him at a party, but I didn't think I'd call him. Except, I kept finding the number he gave me that I thought I threw away. After awhile, I thought, maybe there was a reason why. Anyway, we went out."
Ravi nodded with a smile, but Nick had to wonder if this was the last time they'd be going to the arcade together.