“Must be laundry day,” Cypress noted with a chuckle, nodding at Orion’s attire. It didn’t escape anyone’s notice that Orion had a favorite shirt and seemed to wear it days on end. But not today. He was sporting a regular striped shirt with a collared one underneath.
The guys had been jamming at Orion’s house without Nick again. Nick always seemed to be getting in trouble and grounded in the evenings which severely limited his practice time with the rest of the band. Luckily there was enough raw talent between Orion and Cypress to carry on without their guitar player.
Cypress was a constant guest of the estate, being Orion’s best friend since they were in elementary school. Orion’s family consisted of a legacy of musicians and they practiced in the music room which held at least three guitars, the bass, and an extra drum kit that Cypress used because it was impractical to haul his trap set from house to house.
Orion just smiled with a roll of his eyes before closing them and deftly plucked out a line on one of the bass strings.
It was nearing sundown when they decided to stop and retreat to Orion’s room to hang out and listen to records. It was one of their favorite things to do.
“What did Nick do this time?” Orion wondered aloud after putting a Pink Floyd vinyl on the turntable and took a seat on one of the enormous speakers. He knew that Cypress, being Nick’s cousin, would probably have the details.
“Well you know, his grandma just died,” Cypress indulged in answering the query.
“Yeah…that was sad, I gave my condolences.”
Cypress’s mouth quirked upward slightly in amusement.
"Well Nick was supposed to give his Uncle a poem to read at the funeral..."
"...and Nick instead gave him the lyrics to a Marilyn Manson song."
"Aunt Harmony was really pissed off at that.”
Orion winced, imagining the confusion of the mourners. Then his wince turned to a bit of worry since the competition was less than two weeks away, “So any word when he can make it back to practice?”
“Probably Saturday, unless he does some other stupid thing that gets him in trouble,” Cypress answered. They had known Nick since they were kids and Nick couldn’t resist a prank or a challenge. He never thought things through either, and seemed surprised that his negative actions had negative consequences.
Cypress leaned forward and pulled one knee up to his chest and bobbed his head slightly to the song as it was ending, “Man, this song is so good.”
Another thing Orion admired about his friend was that Cypress was so very chill. He didn’t get stressed out or worried about life and just seemed to go with the flow, like fa piece of dandelion in the wind, and took in grace whatever was thrown at him.
“The next one is even better,” Orion turned the music volume up and hopped off his seat on the speaker. He held out his hand for Cypress to take to stand.
Cypress grabbed Orion by the forearm with a raised brow, and Orion pulled him up. They were about the same height. Orion seemed only a bit taller because of the way his hair stuck out.
“It’s still pretty good, but I liked the last one better” Cypress mused, referring to the song. He slowly released his grip on Orion’s arm but Orion caught his hand and held onto it; Orion didn’t know why, but it felt nice.
Cypress was looking at their hands in a perplexed manner, before looking to Orion for an explanation. He was used to Orion grabbing his hand to pull him this way and that to show him places and things but Orion never lingered like this before.
“I…”Orion’s voice was suddenly croaky, his throat tightening. He met Cypress’s gaze and he could swear his heart started beating harder than before, probably hard enough Cypress could feel it through their fingertips.
The hand in his went from relaxed to rigid and before Orion could explain himself, Cypress had yanked his hand back and held up the opposite, blocking Orion from any kind of advancement, “I better be getting home.”
Orion could feel his whole body slump with dejection. He hadn’t meant to weird Cypress out, but lately his feelings for Cypress seemed to be evolving
. He had always been passionate about music, and for some reason seeing Cypress play drums as he did…it had awoken something in his heart. He just hoped he could suppress the feeling enough to not ruin the dynamic of his band, or even worse, lose him his best friend.