Edd Interrupted

Chapter 3 - Summer After Freshman Year II

The next time they met was when Double D was walking home from the grocery store, wobbling unsteadily with two paper grocery bags, one in each arm. Kevin was just climbing into his car when he noticed the loser and passed briefly to watch him. His skinny arms were trembling. He had a line of sweat soaking through the back of his gray T-shirt and the guy was loony wearing blue jeans and his dorky hat when it was this hot out. He was still staring when the bottom of one of the brown bags ripped and oranges, laundry detergent, and bars of soap fell to the paved drive way.

“Oh, dear . . . oh, dear, oh, dear . . .”

Kevin chuckled, debating a second or two, before heading across the street to take the unbroken bag from Double D, holding it easily in one arm. “You walk to the store?”

When Double D returned from chasing fruit down the driveway, he answered. “I don’t drive.”

“Don’t or don’t know how?”

Double D stiffened his spine, arms full of fallen groceries. “I never cared to learn.”

“Damn weird. Where are your house keys?”

“My what?”


“Oh!” His arms were too full to fish it out from under the potted plant in the entryway, so Kevin did.

As to be expected, Double D’s house was immaculate. It wasn’t just tidy, wasn’t just organized, it was sterile. There wasn’t a speck of dust on any surface. The baseboards were white and spotless. Books on shelves were in order, tallest to shortest. The entire place smelled just like Double D, clean, fresh, with a touch of soap and fabric softener. He was about to step through the living room and into the kitchen with the groceries when he noticed Double D slip out of his shoes and tuck them into the coat closet. Figuring he’d indulge the loser, he kicked off his flip flops.

“Why the hell is everything labeled?” Kevin grunted as he shoved cans of soup and boxes of brown rice into the pantry.

“Organizational paradigms can help one live a more satisfying--”

“What? Life? You think labeling stuff will make you happier?” He snorted. “Get real, dork.”

“It’s not that,” Double D insisted and moved to stand in front of the pantry with Kevin, twisting each can and box so the label was visible, so everything was uniformly facing forward.

Strangely, Kevin thought it was endearing.

“I like seeing words on things.”

“What, like, you forget a bed’s a bed and a chair’s a chair?”

Double D blushed and shut the pantry door. Kevin thought that was endearing, too. He blushed like a girl, all dainty and sweet. The sweetest, most indulgent cherry just begging to be plucked.

“All right, I’ll buy all this crap. So, if I’m gonna label Rolf, he’d be, what . . . ‘Foreigner?’”

“That depends entirely on what he is to you. Labeling things is relative. You may label Rolf ‘Friend’ while I might label him ‘Neighbor.’”

Kevin slumped at the kitchen table, letting Double D finish unpacking. “Dork.”

“I might call you a dork for attending a prestigious college just to play baseball,” he huffed in return.

“I’m there because I used to play baseball,” he corrected, not at all phased by being called a “dork” by Double D. It was like a puppy squeaking at you: harmless. “I’m on scholarship. I’m majoring in political science.”

Stunned, Double D turned around, holding two cans of tomato sauce. “Really?”

“Thought I was a dumb jock, didn’t you?”

“Well, yes. I mean . . . I . . . assumed that . . . not to say . . .”

Kevin took pity on him and chuckled. “What’re you majoring in?”

Surprisingly, Double D didn’t know. He hadn’t thought about it. He had so many interests, was so good at so many things, it was hard to pinpoint what he did well with something he supremely enjoyed. His freshman year had been consumed with the mundane, general studies every student needed to graduate in anything. Now it was time to dabble in his major classes. He still hadn’t registered.

He ultimately said, “I’m not sure.”

“You’ll figure it out eventually.”

It was the best response Double D had ever gotten. His parents and advisors and teachers all pushed him to choose something. Choose now, you’re already behind, you should know this, choose now, now, now. He found he greatly appreciate this laid-back view of his education, even if it was just Kevin, someone who had nothing to do with it.

Just as he opened his mouth to thank him, Kevin was heading to the door. “Catch you later, dork.”

“You’re . . . you’re leaving now?” He couldn’t stop himself from following Kevin to the front door.

“I’ve got stuff to do.”

“What kind of stuff?”

Kevin snorted as he slipped into his flip flops. “What’re you, my girlfriend?” Before Double D could stutter out a reply, Kevin opened the front door and slipped out. “Later, babe.”


The week before Double D was scheduled to leave for school, Kevin let himself into his house and remembered to slip out of his flip flops at the entryway. Double D noticed and was touched.

“Can I get you something, Kevin? A cold beverage?”

As though he’d been doing it for years, Kevin slumped in one of the kitchen chairs and scratched his taught abdomen. “A Coke would be good.”

He’d expected Double D to hand him the can. When he didn’t get it, he watched Double D bustle about the kitchen like a housewife. He took a sparkling glass from the cupboard and filled it with crushed ice from the freezer. He studied the amount, took a little ice out, put more in, took some out until he was satisfied. Then he opened the can and poured it. As though the chore was entirely jolly, he put the glass on a coaster in front of Kevin and then smiled broadly.

Kevin cocked an eyebrow and looked up at him. “You’re such a girl.”

The smile disappeared. “That is a terrible stereotype, Kevin. An ignorant observation as young men may be hosts just as well as--”

“Yeah, how about you eat something.”

“Lunch isn’t until an hour from now, and I would be remiss to ruin my--”

“Then how about you just stop talking all together?”

“Need I remind you this is my home?”

“I’ll remind you I can still kick your ass across the street. How’s that?”

Double D sighed heavily and went to the refrigerator, defeated. “Can I make you some lunch, Kevin?”

“Good idea, dork.”


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