A week had passed since marco had heard the "Conversation", between Tom and Star.

And while janna's theories were in the back of his mind, that wasn't his main focus.

No, his main focus was to keep being a good friend and not act like he had just heard something personal and private that he wasn't supposed to know about. He needed to get back into spirits, hang out with his friends, and be as supportive as possible for the two of them until they were comfortable talking to him about whatever it was they weren't sure about mentioning to him.

They were his friends after all, he didn't want to lost them due to being a terrible friend.

But while he was ignoring janna's ideas, as anything janna claimed was really never true, and as much as he tried to keep happy, he still somehow felt irked and he didn't fully understand why. He was trying to come up with reasons, maybe he felt his friend liked each other more then him? Well he knew that wasn't true, tom almost always seemed to hang out with marco when he had the chance, so did star.

Maybe he felt this way because tom was really succeeding with his crush and marco wasn't? After all marco already had gotten upset about tom being so good at karate when it took years for him to even break a single board.

But somehow it didn't feel that way, marco had already squashed that bug, especially when he realized how much it hurt tom.

So what was it?

What was it really that was bothering him so much?

"Marco? Hey dude, did you hear me? I got the tickets!", tom waved his hand in front of marco's face, waking him up from his thoughts, Tom was smiling and laughing at him, playful as ever. "Dude, you alright? You're so spaced out", marco shook his head, he really needed to start paying attention to his best friends, especially if he wanted to not come off like he was suspicious or anything.

Thankfully tom didn't seem too bothered, probably chalking it up to marco thinking about school or jackie.

"Uh sorry, yeah, that's really awesome tom, i can't wait to go with you!", marco was actually genuine about that, he was pretty excited to go with tom. He'd never been to a concert in person and he was sure if he did he'd go with star, having a guy friend who liked the same band was not something he expected to happen so quickly. And they were going to hang out and sing together? God it was the best thing marco had ever gotten in awhile.

Well, hopefully it would at least.

"Me too, i've never been to a concert before...", he said, voice wandering, "I never really got to y'know "Hang out" with people much back home. So...I'm actually really kinda excited to just do stuff like this with a friend.". He smirked a little, "Besides, maybe after we can go get some tacos and smoothies and just hang out for a bit...maybe i can sleep over at your house if you want?".

That sounded...amazing.

"Yeah! I'll ask my parents, but i know they'll say yes anyway...we could even try and get justin tower's autography while we're there...maybe...hopefully".

"Yeah of course, i think i can do that".

"You can?", marco asked, puzzled and ecstatic.

"I've never been to a concert before, but i did meet him in person once, when i was back at my old home...so he might remember me and meet us or something", wait a second, tom had MET the lead singer of their favorite band?! And never told marco about that!? Was tom some celebrity or something secretly?! How in the heck was tom so lucky-

Tom must've seen gears turn in marco's head as he quickly stepped in.

"Sorry, i wanted it to be a surprise before but i guess i might as well spill the beans on that one".

He seemed actually a little sheepish about that one, but marco patted his back, "Tom, you don't have to go so overboard for me but...it all sounds like a lot of fun, i really appreciate it. I'm probably gonna have to owe you for this one, like majorly, though i'm not sure what can beat meeting one of my idols in person, a sleepover, and a concert...".

"Dude, you don't have to-".

"I know, but i want to.".

Tom seemed to blush a little at that, touched at marco's words.

"So yeah, i'm excited...big ole hangout, just you and me. Consider it a big thank you for y'know...not making me feel alone or weird out here. Then tom let out an oo as marco hugged him tightly, almost knocking the wind out of him. "No one has ever done something that nice for me before, god, i'm gonna have to work to one up you after this whole thing".

Tom laughed, "You don't have to...".

"But i want to", marco replied, repeating tom's words teasingly.

"Very funny...but yeah...oh and maybe we can make cookies during the sleepover, something fun...could top it off with movies or games if you're still awake by that point", he winked, "Make it the best night ever". He bumped marco's shoulder as they disbanded, noticing people were staring, Mostly a lot of his classmates. Marco nearly forgot they were still in school, simply waiting for the bus to take them home.

That reminded him.

"So uh...where's star?".

She usually was here by now, unless she got held back to be scolded or something, or maybe star forgot something at her locker perhaps, she never ran late to get out of school with her friends. Mostly because these days star was pretty happy to avoid having to do schoolwork and deal with people like Brittney, though her not being here seemed to leave marco and tom both super worried.

"Should...we look for her?".

She was going to miss the bus if she didn't make it here soon and marco didn't want to leave her here. He gripped his backpack strap a little tighter in nervousness, tom trying to reassure him before star made her way around the corner in a hurry. Clearly knowing how late she was to meet up with her friends and tugging them onto the bus before they could even ask what happened.

Both letting out a small noise as she did so.

Marco felt the wind knocked out of him being thrown onto his seat and tom on the opposite one, star breathing faster then usual.


"H-hey guys...sorry i'm late and everything I uh...got caught up in stuff", the boys looked between each other and she quickly ushered them to the bus so they could get home, "C'mon, we need to get home...". Marco felt her squeeze his arm rather forcibly, and he wondered just what star got herself into. He had the impression whatever it was, it might've been...well, bad.

And Star confirmed this for him the moment they sat down in their seats, the girl trying to fix her hair and huffing.

"Star...what happened?".

"I-...i was talking to jackie and ugh...brittney passed by".

Oh, oh no.

"Apparently her stupid birthday is coming up and of course none of us are invited because of course and jackie told her off for acting so mean and said if none of us were coming, she wasn't interested in coming either", star sounded so irrtated by that but that seemd very in character for jackie to do. Marco had to admit, the fact jackie stood up for them like that was actually...it was rather sweet, especially since jackie was considered decently popular among the school.

"Well that's cool of her...it's ok, it would've been a boring party anyway".

"Marco, you don't understand...brittney told us to come!".


"Apparently she'd rather we show up then have jackie not show up, because the scene she made when defending us got a LOT of people's attention, that's why i was late, we got sent to the principle's office and in the end...she said we're coming", she seemed to be resisting the urge to stab someone at the moment, her anger searing through her teeth.

Even Tom looked baffled and grossed out, "Then why bother showing up, let's bail, ruin her party...like i care".

"Except she called our parents already to make sure we couldn't back out-".

"She didn't".

"The principle technically made the call...but..."

He couldn't believe this, they got themselves roped into a party with the girl who was spreading lies about them and being awful to them? Why? Why even bother, they had better things hey could do then hang out with someone as awful as Brittney, but somehow by a stroke of luck they seemed to get themselves roped into going to her party anyway.

There was an inkling that brittney almost planned this, like she had malicious intention with them coming, she would really rather have them there then not jackie? C'mon, there had to be something up.

"Pfft, we'll just pretend to be sick that day then...".

"Our parents aren't that stupid tom...we just all conveniently get sick? On the same day of a party of a girl we don't like? Ha, right", tom hated to admit it, but marco was right about that, there was no way they'd buy into that no matter how convincing they might make their sickness. Tom felt a wave of anger and frustration hit him, his good mood with marco suddenly ruined.

"Fine, but if we're going, i'm not speaking to her".

"Don't worry, we won't either".

This seemed to make tom a little better, a smile, faint as it was, appearing on the corner of his mouth for a split second.

"I'm glad to have you guys around as my friends, ugh...i hope jackie knows what she got us into-", it wasn't jackie's fault of course, she was trying to help, but seems it only led to more problems in the end. Star sighing, "She told me she was really sorry about that, she'll probably text you guys soon about it...i think she's hoping to make things up to us later if she can", that sounded like jackie alright.

At least she was taking responsibility for it.

But being sent to a party of the biggest bully in school? That sounded like there was no way it could end well.

Especially with all the rumors being spread around, and marco felt his chest stop when he really thought about it. A lot of the rumors around came from him hanging out with tom, what if they got worse? There was a real chance of it after all. Tom could get teased about their relationship and tell everyone off for it and...well, he could tell everyone that he didn't feel that way for marco.

And that seemed to sting to marco for some reason.

What if this ruined their friendship?

He didn't want brittney to tease tom, it could ruin tom's social life entirely and their friendship and-

"Marco? Everything ok?".

Star and Tom were staring at him, both highly concerned for their friend.

And no wonder, marco looked like he might burst from all the anxiety building up inside of him right now, all this stuff that was getting to him even though nothing had actually happened yet. He needed to pull himself together, calm himself down, do what tom did when he had moments like this, take a breather and remind himself nothing bad had happened yet.

"I'm ok, i'm sorry, i'm just worried what's going to happen if we show up...i don't trust brittney, she might take advantage of us being there or something.".

"You're not wrong about that marco, she always looks like she's up to something bad".

Star then grew a grin on her face that marco didn't like, the boy quickly snapping into her face to get her out of it, "Hey uh...don't, we could do without being banned from school or sued...instead of causing trouble let's maybe just be super careful around her instead".

Star looked sad, but she didn't seem surprised either.

Next time.

As they were dropped off, they were quickly surrounded as both marco and tom's parents left their respective houses tp give the kids large hug, as if somehow this situation was something to actually celebrate. "Oh KIDS! I heard you got invited to a big PARTY with your friends! That's so wonderful! It's been so long since i saw you go to a friend's birthday party like that marco!", marco was embarrassed as he was squeezed tighter by his father.

Gee, tell the whole world why don't ya?

"Tom's never been invited to a party before, that's wonderful!".

"DAD!", Tom blushed, him and marco both uncomfortable and humiliated now.

At least tom understood his pain, even if they both wanted to be out of this as soon as possible. Their parents eventually let them go though, noticing their kids didn't look nearly as thrilled as they did about this whole thing. They had to know what brittney was like at this point from how much their sons complained about her, there was no way they didn't.

And yet this thought this was a good idea?

They had to be desperate to get their kids out of the house at that point.

"Sorry sorry sorry, i'm just happy to hear about you being invited to an outing with a lot of kids, your mom is already considering what you should wear so you look good for it". His mother nodded and tom felt even more embarrassed, he wasn't dressing up for the meanest girl in school, he would for star, marco or even jackie but not for the girl who glared at him during lunch.

"Ooo! We'll help!", and marco grumbled as his father approached tom's parents.

He desperately hoped they didn't give the three of them matching outfits.

Because if given the chance, they would.

Star motioned to the boys, and pointed down the road and marco was quick to put the pieces together.

"C'mon, she's inviting us to her house tonight to uh...,avoid...this", he motioned to their parents talking and tom shrugged, maybe star's house was a better place to hide right now, at least star's mom might actually see the problem with all of this. The three heading down ways to get to star's house, a place marco had been a few times but tom had not been inside yet.

In fact, he'd yet to even see what it looked like.

It was a nice blue house, white door and windows, with a well maintained garden in the front and well kept lawn. You'd never think it was the kinda place someone like star really would live in if only because star would never have a house this nice looking if she actually owned it. Her parents must've really put in the effort to keep it this good looking.

And upon further inspection there was a lovely butterfly print on the door.

Tom was taking it all in but none of this was new to marco, he'd been here before enough times, and star's messy room contrasted this nice looking house to the extreme. He also remembered it because jackie lived on the next street, he remembered when star moved in and he felt slightly jealous how lucky she was to be so close to jackie, though really it was a blessing to have an excuse to wave at the girl when visiting star and she was riding past them.

"Up to my room, c'mon...before mom notices", star motioned for them to enter, not wanting to deal with her mother and her strictness, Marco couldn't really blame her, her mom always seemed a little too uptight, even if she was cool with her having friends over, he tended to make a lot of rules himself but Moon was on another level of strictness to make sure stuff didn't get out of hand.

It was like she thought star was a bomb or something that could explode any second.

But it seemed neither of her parents were back yet from...wherever they actually worked.

Their house was...mostly tidy, and it seemed rather elegant from the inside, thought that probably came from moon more then anything. The rest of her family were way too rowdy to have a place looking as nice as this. If river and star had in their way the place would probably look like a giant mess with several animals running around and only moon kept this place together.

But overall, it was nice.

Nearly the opposite of tom's much more gothic type home.

Star dragging the boys to her room, wanting to avoid her mom as much as possible and to hang out with her friends, the two finding themselves in the messiest room in the house. Star's clothes were everywhere, so were her books, and trash and so much more. Another thing she and tom had in common, they both weren't the peak of tidiness, though tom seemed marginally better in comparison.

Usually when marco slept over, he tended to sleep downstairs, both because River tended not to trust marco to sleep in star's room and both because it was too messy for him to sleep up there anyway.

Marco wasn't mad about that though, Star's room was a safety hazard.

Even now he and tom had to carefully step over the girl's trinkets and clothing to take a seat on her fancy canopy bed. Star dropping her backpack and items just on the floor without much of a care in the world, before falling on her floor, tuckered out. "Y'know, i've never been invited to a party since i've moved in here...well, aside from marco's at least, i just wish it wasn't brittney's of all people", she pouted, looking at the ceiling.

"You really think we're gonna be forced to go?", marco asked, star nodding.

"Yeah, we're stuck now...you know your parents aren't going to let you back out...".

Tom laid back on the bed, annoyed, " I can't believe that, it was so embarrassing, announce my partylessness to the whole world why don't ya dad...", tom covered his face, blushing under it as marco tried to calm him down. "It's ok tom, lots of teens don't go to those kinda parties, you aren't alone...it's not that embarrassing, and it's totally cool".

"You don't get it marco...i already feel anxious enough from barely talking to people...it's like rubbing it in my face".


"I'm sure your dad had no ill intent...if it makes you feel any better though, i usually don't get invited to parties either, i usually throw some but never go to much myself", tom was quiet, leaving marco wondering if tom was comforted or not by his words. But he kept talking, just in case he may of stepped out of line, "I know it's lonely and everything...not having fun with the others...i'm sorry this had to be your first party here...".

"That's ok marco...i guess at least, i get to go with you".

Marco felt his face grow warm rather quickly, turning away to hide it, though unfortunately turning away from tom...meant looking at star.

Star smirked, seeing marco's face as he turned away.

If star and tom were dating in secret he didn't want either of them getting the wrong idea.

"Uh yeah, that at least sounds like a lot of fun...i'd rather go with you both then...alone".

"We'll just stick together so that leech doesn't mess with any of us...", tom hissed, "I might have to wear my good suit and everything, just in case...get a little tired of everyone acting like i'm some criminal or something because of how i dress.", it was really a shame the rumors were starting to spread like this, tom was still fairly new, well...not THAT new anymore but he'd hadn't lived here long and everyone was judging him.

it really made marco mad.

How was tom supposed to fit in if everyone was treating him like a danger to society for no reason?

Ok sure, maybe tom had well...scared jeremy half to death, several times, but he hadn't actually done anything criminal! He hadn't robbed anyone or attacked anyone or even harmed anyone for the sake of it. Jeremy was also being a bully during those times as well and tom hadn't even really laid a finger on him either, he came out unhurt...well...his social standing might've been hurt...

No, tom protected him and stood up to a bully, that wasn't the same thing.

These accusations were done to slander the boy.

Really it might've been possible with how tom had stood up to jeremy he might've been getting some attention Brittney didn't like, she hated attention being driven from herself after all, which was why Star bothered her so much. Now there was another strange new student getting the attention of others for her to scoff at, and with him even spending time with star and her best friend she might've felt more threatened.

Of course the new kids who got people's attention were friends, of course they were.

At the very least, that sounded like the reason Brittney was like this.

She could never just handle people taking attention away from herself.

Which then gave marco an idea, something he seemed to share with both his friends in the room.

"Y'know what, i think going might be a good idea, don't you think so?".

"Yeah marco", tom said with a grin that janna would envy, "Y'know something, maybe we HAVE been too hard on her, we should do to her party and give her the BEST birthday she could ever get from someone like us!". Even Star actually seemed delighted, rubbing her hands together, "Ooooo, yessss, i'm already gonna get started working on my gift".

Their smiling faces were quickly wiped however, at the sound of an opening door downstairs.

It seemed star's parents were finally home.

Which naturally starting sending star into a mood, quickly getting up and placing her ear at the door to hear how close they were and if they were talking about her or anything important. Though marco noticed she was glancing back to him more then anything as she listened in, like she was worried he'd hear something he shouldn't for some odd reason.


"Shhhh, my parents are home, keep quiet!".

The boys exchanged looks between them, waiting for star to stop...whatever she was doing, a few minutes passing before she headed outside her room to greet her parents downstairs. Hearing her mother ask if she got detention again and her father erupt in laughter, but overall they both seemed happy. Tom and Marco waiting just in case star didn't want them to come down yet.

But sure enough they heard star coming back up.

"Star? Is everything-?"

"Mom knows you're here...she's asking for you two to come down".

The two boys looked at each other before getting up and heading down the stairs carefully, hoping they weren't in trouble.

Tom actually looked really nervous all of a sudden and marco felt a bit concerned, was tom just nervous to meet his crush (Possibly girlfriend) 's parents? He seemed to look that way, guess he was so eager to get away from his parents he hadn't really taken the time to think about the fact he might of been going to run into star's own parents by being here.

Marco felt a sudden urge to comfort him.

Star's parents weren't THAT bad...but granted, Tom's look might give them the wrong idea.

Especially to someone like Moon who Marco and star both agreed seemed to be a bit more uptight.

But as the boys finally made down moon and river looked upon them pretty normally, the woman wearing a suit and river wearing the most dad outfit you could imagine someone who liked hunting and the outdoors would wear. Though before the boys could relax they were fixated on Tom, and that seemed to make marco really worry, were they judging him?

But they didn't seem mad...they seemed...surprised? Worried? Like they wanted to say something but couldn't?

Marco couldn't read their minds but something felt off when the couple looked at tom.

Like they'd seen him before.

But marco didn't even have much time to really ponder any of that, before River pulled him into a hug that crushed his bones. "MARCO MY BOY! GOOD TO SEE YOU!", this was how the guy usually greeted marco whenever he saw him but marco would prefer to just shake his hand...actually, maybe less then that. River was so strong marco wouldn't be surprised if he could punch a hole in the wall at this point.

Jesus, where were all these super strong people even coming from?

At this point maybe they all came from the same place and everyone was secretly superheros.

"Yeah...good to see you too...", marco managed to get out despite being crushed in the man's arms.

He fixed his clothes as he was let go and noticed moon had pulled tom aside to talk, though marco couldn't even tell what the two were saying to each other, peaking his curiosity even more as star stood nervously by.

Something was going on here and it was super weird, that was for sure,

Though star quickly dragged him into the kitchen to offer him some cereal, away from tom and her parents, only making marco more suspicious of what exactly was going on around here. It was like everyone was in on something he wasn't allowed to know about, and it gave him an uneasy type of feeling as he looked at star skeptically, not buying her attempt to change the subject and distract him.

Before he could even call her out on what was happening she was already making him cereal and answering his question, "Don't worry marco, it's all good...they uh...they just know about the rumors about tom and stuff...so they're nervous...that's all".

Was it though? Would star's parents really care about those rumors that bad? Especially since they were started by a bunch of teenagers?

Star could tell marco wasn't buying it, and she nervously poured him some juice, clearly regretting the choice to take the boys here. She quickly tried to change the subject again despite marco's clear uninterest, "Anyways we could do homework and stuff...come up to my room later so we have some quiet time away from my parents and everything.".

Yeah something was wrong alright, considering star NEVER wanted to do homework.

What the heck was going on?

But whatever it was, it was clear he'd have to push star on it later when she wasn't being...well...however she was being right now, There was no way she was going to tell him what was actually going on when she was like this, he was just going to have to wait. Though he could hear tom talking to star's parents outside, left wondering what they were talking about.

He felt so...left out.

And he really didn't like this feeling.

He never really felt this way before when it was just him and star, but something about tom since he arrived seemed to have marco more on edge, thinking about things he never really had to before.

Was he really overthinking all of this?

He doubted it.

His feelings right now just were...confusing, he didn't know what to think right now and suddenly the comfort he had just a few minutes ago in star's room seemed to have left his mind. Star went back outside to where the others were as marco sat alone, before tom came in to see him, smiling a little awkwardly and trying to brighten marco up, as unsuccessful as it was.

Tom wasn't dumb, he could tell this was all really strange to marco.

"So uh...i'm guessing you might want some answers to-".

"Yeah", marco said, not even needing tom to finish his sentence.

"I'm...gonna have to wait and tell you sometime later...maybe, if i'm allowed".

If he was allowed? What did that mean? Tom wasn't allowed to talk about what was going on? By Who? Star? Her parents? His parents?

Tom could only send him a reassuring glance to help him relax, though marco was having a hard time doing so...his mind swirling with questions, only making tom more worried.

"Marco...please don't-".

"It's fine...it's fine...", marco said, huffing, he needed to pull himself together, if tom was going to tell him what was happening he was just going to have to wait and hear about it, he couldn't lash out at his best friends without knowing what was going on. He felt tom trying to comfort him and reassure him nothing was worth worrying so much about, and marco finally cooled off.

He didn't meant to get so upset but something about this...bothered him.

These were his best friends, the people he should be trusting the most of anyone.

And yet they were keeping secrets from him and leaving him out, he just couldn't help but feel a sense of betrayal.

"Marco...i can tell you're not fine...and i'm really sorry, but please...can you trust me on this...when there's a good time...i want to talk about it with you.", marco turned to look at tom directly, into his green eyes before turning away, feeling his face get warm. He really couldn't stay mad at tom for long could he? Tom was being way too nice to him as per usual.

"I...hope you have a good reason for all this", marco mumbled.

"I do...i promise".

Marco munched on the cereal star laid out for him as he felt tom comforting him, "Hey...for the record...we didn't talk about anything you need to worry about ok? Star's parents just had some things they needed to say to me in particular". He was trying to ease marco and marco took a few long breaths to weed out the last of his pent up anger, he'd never been so moodly before.

Was he sure he wasn't the one with the anger issues? Not Tom?

Tom seemed usually very cool and Marco felt he was the one with so much...frustration.

Tom was here, trying to get him to cool down, not the other way around.

Why did om give him a reaction like this so often? First karate now this?

Marco slumped his shoulders, he felt bad now.

"Hey, i'm sorry, i don't know why i'm so moody lately...i didn't mean to take it out on you and star...", his voice change turned tom more towards him, worried, "Hey it's ok, i get what you mean...i get moody too...my parents always say it's hormones and everything but i know it's inherited...my parents have their own anger issues and everything...they're just better at dealing with them then i used to".

"Hormones?", marco now felt REALLY embarrassed if that had been the case, shaking his head and changing the topic.

"I just want to know i can trust you and star...ok? You're my only friends and it feels like you're not telling me something because of...", he didn't finish his sentence and now it was tom's turn to feel bad, "I know...and i really want to tell you...but not right here...it's not a good time...but i will tell you marco...don't think this means i don't trust you or anything".

"I'll take your word for it...ok?".

That was enough for tom, looking rather relived.

"Ok, thank you marco, i promise...i'll explain when i can".

Star suddenly headed back in, relieved, "Ok, think everything is back on track...sorry about that, i really should've thought a but more about bringing you over to my house when my parents might of stepped through the door. ". She actually did seem rather anxious, like this whole thing stressed her out more then usual, it seemed to soften marco just a little more.

"It's ok star, don't worry so much, you got everything under control".

Those words seemed to send a wave of relief to her, "Yeah, yeah i did".

"You think we outta leave before things get more awkward?", star's eyes wandered to marco and back to tom, "Uh...well, maybe for now let's stick around, don't wanna risk getting into another situation or something".

"Actually, good point".

Last thing they needed was to add to the already tense situation they were currently under.

And marco didn't need any more stress placed upon him then he had already placed on himself. Star headed back out of the room and marco finished eating, waiting in silence for star's return, glancing at tom every once in awhile. Sometimes he caught himself looking a little too long, carefully looking anywhere else he could, not wanting to look like a weirdo.

He swore tom had glanced at him a few times though, even if he was trying his best not to think about it too hard, tom was probably just feeling as awkward as marco was. Marco wasn't even sure he knew how to make light conversation right now, he had pretty much all but got into a serious fight with tom and tom was probably being careful not to freak marco out more.

Earlier that day they were talking about how excited they were to hang out at a concert and now marco was freaking out about tom keeping more secrets from him, it was such a long range of emotions that he couldn't fully figure out. He felt sick to an extent, though he knew he was probably exaggerating the situation worse then it already probably was.

"Hey tom i-".

"Tom, marco, your parents are looking for you", moon wandered in, fixing herself up, "I know your visit was brief but you should head back and see them, i think they're worried about you since neither of you told them where you were going and it'll be dinner soon". Tom nodded and stood up, marco doing the same, actually happy to be leaving and getting out of this awkward situation.

Star sending them an awkward wave and promising to text them later so they could figure things out when it came to Brittney's party.

Leaving Tom and Marco to walk together.

"Marco, your friendship means a lot to me...", the tall boy mumbled, "I don't want you to ever doubt that...".

Marco nodded as they walked side by side, "I know, i didn't meant to freak you out, i guess...tom i know something is off, and i know you're not being completely honest with me...star's parents looked at you REALLY funny, like they wanted to say something. I don't...want to pry and stuff, i just...i don't want to feel like i'm being lied to either...like i want you guys to trust me".

"Yeah, i know...", he brushed at his hair, sighing, "I figured something like that would happen eventually...it was nothing against you marco, i promise...".

"So you'll really explain this to me?".

"I will, when i can, i promise...", tom stopped their walk, they stool on the sidewalk between their homes, knowing they needed to part ways and move on for the night, "I really care about you marco, this stuff is just...private...and i need to think about it...before i can consider it.". As much as marco wanted to know what tom wasn't telling him, he had to admit, tom didn't HAVE to tell him anything, this was personal to him and he had a right to talk when he wanted.

Marco gripping his backpack and letting out some air, "Alright, i'll respect that, i'll text you later tonight ok?".

Tom smiled, "Yeah, and we can plan our gift for brittney and our love sentence stuff!".

Marco smiled back, "Yeah, sounds good".

They stood there, as if wanting to hug or something before they parted, but instead, they awkwardly shrugged and avoided eye contact, both a little flushed before marco headed to his house. Tom stood there a second longer before heading to his, marco turning to see the boy wave at him as he closed the door, waving back meekly. The relief of home hitting him.

After dinner, and a long conversation about marco running off to star's without telling his parents, followed by discussing what he should wear to a teen party. Marco was happy to be in his room, getting ready for bed and ending this long day. His cell phone sitting nearby as tom started texting him, the phone constantly buzzing with energy over and over again.

Marco grabbing it and sitting on his bed.

Tom sending him a few pics of him and his rabbit, next to some clothes he wanted to wear for the upcoming events.

He looked so happy.

and marco quickly felt himself blush a little at seeing him before realizing the warmth and shutting it down, thinking about what tom said earlier.

"Hormones...yeah...", he mumbled, texting tom back for a long night of chat.

He'd have to check in with a doctor later...get that sorted out.

Something was up with him and the sooner he fixed it, the better.