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05 February 2011 @ 02:56 pm
[twitfic compilation] Wipe off that angel face (and go back to high school) 3:3/5  
Title: Wipe off that angel face (and go back to high school)
Volume 3: Friendship Caught Fire (Chapter 3 of 5)
Author: tiptoe39
Rating: PG-13 for discussion of sex (yes, among minors- gasp.)
Summary: Sam/Gabriel High school AU. WIP. Done through twitfic / twitlonger. Thanks to jabber_moose for an amazing title!!

Volume 1: Bully and the Beast
One | Two | Three

Volume 2: You Gotta Be Honestly Sincere
One | Two | Three | Four

Volume 3: Friendship Caught Fire
One | Two

Chuck Shurley is the editor-in-chief of the Lawrence Lion, the high school's newspaper. Everything about Chuck screams integrity and honesty and goodwill. There's not a malicious bone in his body. His girlfriend, Becky, is constantly telling him that's why he'll never make it in the writing world. "You have to be vicious to be a journalist," she says. "You have to be willing to write those things that nobody else is going to write."

"Becky, you make it sound like I've got a Watergate scandal hiding under my bed," Chuck complains. "This is a high school. Nothing happens here."

"This is a high school," Becky parrots. "Everything happens here."

"I know what you're thinking," Chuck warns her. "We're supposed to report on official happenings. Not breakups and fistfights."

"You're just chicken," says Becky. "You're afraid to get yourself in trouble by admitting you were at that party."

Chuck hides his head in his hands. "I'm not writing anything that's going to get anyone arrested!"

"You're chicken," Becky repeats. "Chicken, Chuck!"

And then she stops, delighted at her own cleverness. She tries out the new word she's invented - "Chucken" - but it fails to catch on.


What does this have to do with Sam and Gabriel? Well, not a hell of a lot, at first. Except for maybe that Sam tends to read the Lion when he's done with his homework afternoons in the auditorium. Most of the time Sam sits on the piano bench, using the keyboard cover as a desk; sometimes he sprawls on the floor just below the stage where the orchestra sits during performances. Today it's the latter, and he's got his math textbooks open, sheafs of handouts sticking out of every other page like anarchist bookmarks.

"How can you read that tripe?" Gabriel asks, peering over the edge of the stage. Gabriel does most of his work on the stage, sprawled out on his belly, looking up every so often to announce his train of thought to the audience-that-isn't. Sam cocks his head and rolls his eyes and endures sudden spontaneous monologues about the sine of X or the Chinese immigrants who built the nation's railways, then goes back to what he's doing. Whatever helps them learn.

(In this way it's much the same as it's been between them since before they got together. They hang out, enjoy each other's company, and once work is done, if they get a chance, they'll talk, or kiss, or end up down below the first row of seats with their shirts hiked up and their lips swollen. They still go out on dates, too, but this is their time to put away all those sorts of expectations and just be themselves.)

Sam answers Gabriel's question with a "It's interesting," he says. "Besides, it's good to know what's going on in the school."

"Why?" Gabriel worms his way up to lean his head off the edge of the stage, looking directly down at Sam. "It's all about school board meetings and dumb-ass pep rallies. You don't even go to them."

"All the more reason to know what happened," Sam says. "In case I've missed something important."

"You know who's missing something important?"

Sam looks up at him. It's sort of bizarre at this angle, his face is craned up toward the ceiling and there's a Gabriel-face hovering there. "Who?"

Gabriel-face gives a big smile. "Get up and I'll tell you."

Sam rises to his feet and Gabriel reaches out, looping his arms around Sam's neck. "The rest of the world," he says. "They're missing out on us."

Even though Gabriel's on his belly like a slug, propped up only by his hands around Sam's shoulders, he still kisses like a master. Sam sighs into it. Then says, "You're melodramatic."

Gabriel smirks at him. "You noticed."

"Maybe you should join the paper," Sam suggests, hoisting himself up onto the stage so he can sit next to Gabriel (and so Gabriel can roll over, going from beached whale to puppy in 0.2 seconds.) "Write a gossip column."

"Ff, I have my extracurricular already," Gabriel says, and pats the stage. "Maybe you should join. Write an advice column."

Sam snorts.

"Dear Sam," Gabriel says, "I am the editor of a school paper, but my paper sucks. How do I liven it up? Signed, Frustrated Writer With a Premature Goatee."

Another snort from Sam. "Dear Frustrated," he says, "Go to the next school board meeting and start a controversy over something. Say, condoms in school. Or dirty text messages sent between two teachers. Then report on it."

Gabriel laughs. "And you think I'm the dramatic one."

"I've just seen too many movies," Sam says.

But in the next few days he finds himself penning an editorial in his head. And then a movie review. And he starts to wonder.

When Sam gets home, Dean and Cas are playing poker with M&Ms;and drinking Mountain Dew out of shot glasses. It's delightfully amateur.

"Deal you in?" Dean asks when Sam lingers in the doorway. Compared to these two Sam's got no poker face, and it's kind of humiliating, but something occurs to him then and he shuffles over, plunking down between them.

Cas cuts the cards and deals Sam a hand. Dean shoves a dozen M&Ms;in his direction. Sam shakes his head no at the offer of a shot of Dew.

"So I've got a question," Sam says as he surveys his cards. Two, four, seven, king, ace. Every suit represented. He honestly doesn't understand how anyone ever gets dealt a winning poker hand. He's never had anything better than a pair.

"Shoot." Dean nods approvingly at his cards and slides three M&Ms;into the center of the table.

"Actually," Sam says, matching the bet, "the question is for Cas."

Cas raises by three. "Go ahead."

"You work on the Lion, right?"

"The newspaper?" Dean frowns and lays down two cards, which Cas replaces in short order. A flicker of worry goes through Dean's features, and the fact that it's barely perceptible doesn't mean it's not fake. "What about it?"

Sam figures the two and the four could give him a straight, but better to hold the king and ace so at least he has a high card. He puts down the three lower ones. "I was just wondering if it's fun."

"Are you thinking about writing?" Cas replaces only one card in his hand. Sam nods. "You should join. The people are very affable and the atmosphere is pleasant."

"But nobody reads the paper." Dean slides four more M&Ms into the mix, and now Sam has no idea what his hand is.

"It's not about whether people read it, it's about the experience of doing it," Cas counsels. "The ethic of a journalist. Learning how to gather and process information. Writing clearly for the public to understand."

"Process information, huh? Must be easy for you, you're a fricking computer."

"How do you decide what to report on?" Sam peeks at his cards and tries to suppress a shiver. Cas just dealt him two more kings. It's the best poker hand he's ever had. "Do they assign things to you?"

"We look at what's going on in the school, and we all choose the areas we're interested in. It's your call," he adds, gesturing to Sam's cards.

Sam starts and matches Dean's bet. He's playing overcautiously, perhaps, but it's M&Ms, and who cares. "I think I might want to join."

"You'd be most welcome." Cas raises by six. Sam gulps.

"I fold, man," Dean groans, tossing his cards on the table -- nothing -- and pours himself another shot of Dew. He'll be up until three tonight.

"Sam?" Cas nods at him again.

"C-c-call." Now Sam remembers why he doesn't play poker. He doesn't like confrontation much. He gets stuttery.

Cas lays his cards on the table. "Two pair, eights over threes."

Sam doesn't say anything, just lays down his three kings, the ace and the nine. Neither Dean nor Cas moves. Sam gingerly begins to gather up the M&Ms.

"You should definitely join us," Cas says, sounding vaguely dizzy. "With luck like that, you might land a scoop."

The next day Sam is introduced to the staff of the Lawrence Lion. Chuck, who is incredibly enthusiastic and nearly shakes his hand off; Becky, who looks at him flaring her nostrils in a way that could be either hostile or lustful; Ed and Harry, who look like they were just spat out of an '80s revenge-of-the-geeks movie, and a few others. The faculty advisor on the paper is Mr. Turner, who used to work at a major midwestern newspaper and still sounds like he's got a bottle of whiskey stashed under his desk. And Sam's surprised to see that Rose Red, Ruby Veldt, is also on the staff.

"It's not glamorous or anything," Chuck says apologetically, as though Sam was expecting champagne and red carpets. "But it's all about the public's right to know. Our job is to keep students informed about issues that affect them. For example, how much money is the school board cutting from our budget? Are the new rules about going off-campus fair? There's all kinds of things that if students knew about, they'd want to do something about. Things that affect all of us."

Sam likes that idea. He nods. "What about more personal things?" he asks. "Not everything people have to deal with is academic."

"I like him," Becky purrs, gripping Chuck's shoulder and giving it a firm squeeze that makes him wince in pain. "He's got the right idea."

"Don't mind her," Cas says in his ear. "She's been agitating for a gossip column for a while now."

"It's a good idea," Ruby chimes in. "That's what people are interested in reading. Not whether the superintendent can't find his dentures."

"Ruby, Becky, please," Chuck says in a tone of voice that musters up no authority whatsoever.

"That's not what I mean, " Sam says. "My... uh, my friend suggested to me that you might have an advice column. Where people can write in anonymously and get advice from one of their peers. It might help more than that one person. Other people who are having the same problem, you know? Might feel like they're not alone," he adds lamely. "Sorry, I guess that was kind of afterschool-special-y."

He dares to meet Chuck's eyes and is taken aback to find that they're dancing.

"He turned you down?"

Sam whirls in his seat. "No! He just said I had to earn it. He's a really nice guy." Gabriel grumbles, but relents and settles in to listen. Sam goes on. "What he said was, if I can show that I'm able to get students to be honest and talk about their problems then I can have the column. So I have to do this article first."

"About who's having sex."

"About how people feel about sex, and whether they can talk to people about it, and feel like they know about it and stuff. It's not like I'm going to be writing Penthouse Letters or anything."

"How can you possibly know what to say about sex if you've never had it?"

"Like you could do much better."

Gabriel's silent for just long enough. Sam's eyes widen.

"Just the once," Gabriel admits. "At summer camp, last summer. We used to sneak out at night and meet on the beach. We figured we'd never see each other again, and we might as well try."

Sam's jaw isn't working right. "Y-y-you... with a girl?" Gabriel shakes his head. "With a guy?" Nod. "Seriously?" Another nod. "D-d-did you--"

"I topped," Gabriel declares. "It was okay. So weird, though, I feel kind of--" He shudders. "Well, dirty is the wrong word. But it's just weird to be in my house and know... know that I've done that."

"Huh." Sam's not sure what to do with this information. He had figured Gabriel had more experience, given how comfortable he was in his own sexuality. But for whatever reason, he'd never wondered whether Gabriel was a virgin. It didn't seem like it was in the realm of possibility.

Well, he supposes it doesn't matter. It's not like Gabriel's gonna press him to have sex tomorrow or the next day. Still... it's new information.

"You should do a poll," Gabriel says.

For a minute Sam thinks he is making some sort of innuendo-laden pun. "What?"

"Like, an online poll. That way kids can say how they feel anonymously."

Sam screws up his face. "That's not gonna work. They'll just troll the hell out of it. You would."

Gabriel's pleased-with-himself look fades. "Good point."

"Yeah." Sam's eyes are somewhere distant. "Chuck wanted me to prove I could talk to people. So I think that's what I'm gonna do."

Something to Talk About,
Nobody to Talk To

By Sam Winchester

Sex is on the average adolescent's mind over half his or her waking hours. That's what a study out of the University of Virginia says, but chances are most adolescents also think they're the only one who thinks about it that often. If that's you, you're not alone - twelve of the twenty-five students I talked to in preparation for this article said they thought about sex more often than the majority of their classmates. In fact, that's the one common thread I found in all the interviews I did -- everyone seemed to feel that, in some way, he or she was completely alone.

"It's not a surprise when you think about it," says sophomore Jessica Moore. "I have the most open-minded, liberal parents there are, but when I ask a question they're not expecting, they give me a weird answer and look really uncomfortable. We're taught that this subject should make you squirm, so even if you're well-informed, you don't want to raise the topic."

Moore isn't the only one to feel this way. A freshman who asked to remain anonymous told me that when he asked his mother about masturbation, she said it was something he'd have to deal with on his own. "She said to me that even if you did it, you didn't talk about it," the freshman says. "It made me feel like I'd done something wrong by even bringing it up. And I didn't even know what I was asking. I saw the word in a book. I had no idea what it meant."

Most students I spoke to said their parents had told them "the facts of life." Many said they were even told to use protection or to tell their parents if they became pregnant. What was missing, for most, was any talk about the realities of sex - peer pressure, what it's like, what to expect.

"All I knew about sex was what I saw in movies. All that screaming and hair-tossing. But that's not at all what it was like. I wish someone had warned me before I spent ten minutes in the back seat of a car, trying desperately to feel something," said a senior girl who asked not to be named. "Honestly, I'd rather eat chocolate."

Questions of sexual identity are also rampant. Junior Meg Masters said she "always felt like a bitch" for dumping guys. "And it took me a while to figure out I just didn't like them, in general. I still don't know just what I am, but I know it's not a bitch."

Another junior told me, "I'm worried that now that I've slept with one guy, anyone I date will expect it. And I don't want to, not yet, anyway. I swear I'm the only one who feels that way, and it sucks."

I can now happily tell that junior: No, you're not.

So where can students with questions turn? Believe it or not, resources are available. (See the top of this page for a list of places to go in school, in the community and on the Web.) And I'm happy to announce one more resource: an anonymous advice column starting in next week's paper. Submit your question to the Ask Leo box in Mr. Turner's room, or e-mail AskLeo@lawrencehs.lawrence.city.ks.us. All identities will be kept secret.

lady_drace on May 9th, 2012 06:56 pm (UTC)
I just rushed through this entire verse. And I want more. MORE! I HUNGER FOR MORE!!!

And did I mention it's amazing? Cause it is.
Tiptoe39tiptoe39 on May 9th, 2012 07:09 pm (UTC)
I haven't touched this in a very, VERY long time. But maybe someday I shall again! I'm glad you liked it!
lady_drace on May 9th, 2012 07:33 pm (UTC)
Oh, I thought this was left hanging since I saw no links to the last 2 parts! FOUND MORE! READS NOW!!