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Not Just a Buddhist River In Egypt

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Added to the Roswell Slash Archive June 2, 2001

Not Just a Buddhist River In Egypt
Author: Debbie
Rating: PG-13/R for language.
Disclaimer: Metz/Katims/WB/UPN own Roswell. I'm just warping their creation.
Distribution: Guilty Pleasures and the RSA. All others please ask first.
Author's Note/Summary: Sean and Kyle talk after they leave the Crashdown in "Departure". Remember that remark Kyle made about Sean's earring being "a gay thing"? Credit goes to Pixiedude for the inspiration behind this fic. Thanks go to Bennie for the title suggestion, and to hah for your wonderful beta-ing skills.
Feedback: I live for your comments. Both positive and constructive remarks are fine.



       "So, what's the deal with you and Michael?"

       Kyle glanced at Sean as they walked down the street. "There's nothing going on with me and Michael."

       "You and Max, then."

       "What the hell are you insinuating?"

       "Well, you got up and left pretty quickly when they arrived, so I figured something must be up with that."

       "No, there's nothing 'up with that'," Kyle mimicked. "They're just … strange."

       "Strange how?"

       "Just…. Look, I don't want to get into it right now. They do some weird shit sometimes and it makes me uncomfortable. So I left. Yeah, so it's a pretty gay excuse, but there it is."

       Sean smiled in amusement. "You seem to like using that word."

       "What word?"

       "'Gay'."

       "What the hell are you talking about?" Kyle stopped and glared at Maria's cousin.

       "My earring was 'gay', your excuse was 'gay'…. What else do you see as a gay thing?"

       "Look, I'm sorry if I offended you with my remark about your stupid earring. It's just that not many guys around here have done the piercing thing, so, you know, I just thought…."

       "You thought I was gay."

       "No! See, that's it. I know you've been after Liz, so I was confused."

       "You're confused about being gay?" Sean cocked an eyebrow as they continued walking.

       "Will you stop putting words in my mouth? Geez. No, I am not confused about being gay. I was confused about you and your earring. But, clearly, I was wrong. You're straight, your earring is straight. Everything is hunky-dory. Can we move on?"

       "So you like the earring?"

       "Yeah, sure. It's great."

       "Ok, let's go get you one."

       "What?! No, I meant it's great on you!"

       "So, why couldn't it be great on you, Kyle? Still afraid of being pegged as gay?"

       "Did you make it your personal goal to piss me off today? Because you're doing a great job of it. God, no wonder Maria complains about you."

       "No, I'm just trying to have a conversation. Is that suddenly against the law? I'm really not looking for something else to report to my parole officer."

       Kyle sighed. "No, it's not against the law. Fine. Keep talking. Just know that if you piss me off much more, I'll have to use one of my wrestling holds on you."

       Sean shrugged nonchalantly. "Fine by me. So. Where were we? Ah, yes. "Today's debate topic: 'Does Having an Earring Make a Man Gay?'"

       "Been there, done that," Kyle said impatiently. "I already apologized for assuming you were gay because of the earring. Men can have earrings and be straight." Kyle rolled his eyes.

       "Darn right. Except I'm not."

       "Not what?"

       "Not straight. I'm bi."

       Kyle stopped in his tracks, staring in disbelief. "What the fuck were you messing with my head for, then?"

       "I was trying to make a point."

       "So you made it. Can I go now?"

       "Does it bother you?" Sean leaned nonchalantly against a storefront wall.

       "What, the earring? I still think it looks stupid."

       "No, you moron. My being bi. God, how far in denial are you, anyway?"

       "Why do you keep bringing this back to me? We're talking about you here."

       "And you."

       Silence.

       "You know," Sean went on casually, "it's really not a big deal. Being gay."

       "You said you were bi."

       "Whatever. Still not a big deal."

       "Does Liz know about this non-big-deal?"

       Sean shrugged. "It hasn't come up."

       "Well, you'd better tell her. She might think it's a big deal. I know I do."

       "Why? It's only a big deal if you make it one, you know. I used to be like you, getting all riled up over labels. But if you'd had my life, you'd get sick of labels pretty quick. 'Juvenile delinquent' … 'troublemaker' … 'bi'. If I spent all my time focused on how people have pigeonholed me, I'd never get my life back. I'm me. I don't have a problem with it."

       "Well, goody for you."

       "You know what else I don't have a problem with?"

       "What?"

       "This." Quickly, before Kyle could react, Sean stepped away from the wall, grabbed Kyle by the shirtfront, and pulled him in for a kiss. Lips pressed against lips, held for a moment. Then Kyle pushed Sean away.

       "What the fuck was that?"

       "I kissed you."

       "I know you kissed me, idiot! I was there! You not only kissed me, but you did it right here in the open where, oh, say, *everyone* could see us." Kyle crossed his arms and glared at Sean again. "Well, go ahead. Explain yourself."

       Sean shrugged. "I thought you were attractive, so I kissed you. I admit to being rather impulsive. Not my best character trait. Ask Liz. Or Amy."

       "You've kissed Maria's mom? Ok, now I'm even more grossed out."

       "No, but she's had to bail me out when my impulsiveness got me into other trouble. And were you really grossed out by the kiss? You could have pushed me away a lot sooner, you know. Where's my promised wrestling hold?"

       "Don't tempt me."

       They looked at each other in silence, one angrily, the other contemplatively.

       "You know," Sean said at last, "you're pretty good."

       "At what, kissing?"

       "Well, that too. I meant, you're pretty good at avoiding uncomfortable questions. Bravo." Sean clapped his hands.

       "Now what are you babbling about?"

       "Let's see." He counted off on his fingers. "Is there something between you and Max? What other things did you see as being 'gay'? Were you were afraid of being pegged as gay if you had an earring? How far in denial are you? And were you grossed out by the kiss?" He looked at Kyle. "You know what I think?"

       "No. Nor do I care. But why let that stop you?"

       "I think you should try answering one of those. Honestly. It might be enlightening."

       "It has nothing to do with Enlightenment," Kyle mumbled.

       "Yeah, well, excuse me for not being in on all the Buddhist mumbo-jumbo. That's your area of expertise. Observation is mine."

       "Modest, aren't we?"

       Sean shrugged. "I know Liz was helped by some things I've said to her. Amy and Maria, too. Think it over. Give it a shot."

       "Yeah, whatever. Fine. You going to send me home with a written list or something?"

       "No, I trust your memory."

       "Gosh, thanks for the vote of confidence. I appreciate it. Well, it's been … hmmm … can't say 'fun'. But it's been … interesting. Bye. Or … 'bi'. Or -- oh, man, you've got me so screwed up now. I'm getting out of here." Kyle turned on his heel and strode away.

       "See you later," Sean called after Kyle's retreating back.

<*>*<*>*<*>

       He was watching hockey when he heard the knock on the door. Damn. Amy and Maria were both out. Reluctantly, Sean put the TV on mute and went to answer the door.

       "Hey, Kyle. Maria's not here."

       "I came to talk to you."

       "Oh? Ok. You want to come in?"

       "Not really. I, uh, just wanted to say I did that thing you suggested."

       "And?"

       "And…." Kyle took a deep breath. "Lamp posts, zucchini, the picture of my dad and his police academy buddy, my history homework. And me."

       "Wow. You've had a productive couple of days. I hope that was a list of things you saw as gay, because otherwise you have a lot of explaining to do."

       "No, that was it."

       Sean raised an eyebrow. "You?"

       Kyle flushed a little, but he held his gaze steady. "Yeah. Much as I hate to credit you with anything, you were right. About the thing with Max, too, although he doesn't know it."

       "You might be surprised."

       "Yeah, well, between Tess leaving town, the baby, and Liz, I think I'm pretty far down on his priority list."

       "Baby? Oh, yeah. I remember hearing some gossip about that. Well, I still think he might feel something for you. You never know." Sean glanced back over his shoulder at the TV. "Look, I want to get back to the hockey game. You sure you don't want to come in?"

       Kyle peered around Sean into the living room. "You got the Stanley Cup on?"

       "Yeah. Avs vs. Devils."

       "Oh, sure, why the hell not." Kyle shrugged as he stepped into the house. "Just one thing -- you're not planning on kissing me again, are you?"

       Sean smirked. "Saving yourself for Max? That was Liz's excuse."

       "Nah," Kyle grinned back, flopping down on the sofa. "You're just not my type."

       "Boo hoo. My heart is broken."

       "Yeah, I get that a lot. You'll get over it."

       "I'm sure. By the way -- 'History homework'?"

       "Essay on the Hiroshima bombings. You know, the 'Enola Gay'."

       "Oh. Good one. Boy, you really are gay, aren't you?"

       "Yeah, pretty much."

       (end)

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