One who understands - S01 E01

4 days ago

Read Story: SEASON 1 EPISODE 1

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“Hey, Mister Ed!”

Edward Walters looked over his shoulder and raised his hand in greeting as the pickup cruised past him on the town’s main street. He recognized the speaker as Reggie Halston, one of the wide receivers for the Bearcats, the high school football team Ed played the Guard position for. Reggie was grinning as he leaned out the window of his buddy’s pickup. His buddy being Mark Thompson, their quarterback.

Mister Ed. He hated that nickname because… well, he didn’t like to think about it so he pushed it aside.

He gave his head a shake and continued down the street. He was on a mission. He had to buy his sister a birthday card. Grace was turning 22 tomorrow and he wanted to get her a really pretty card. A pretty card for a pretty woman! He blushed at the inappropriate thought. He’d known Grace since she was 10 and he came to live with her and her mom Shirley Wilson when he was just a young boy of 6.

When his mom died in a car accident, Shirley, being her cousin and the only living kin available, took him in. He found out later that her charity was mostly to get her hands on his mother’s limited estate and the insurance money. Shirley made sure he was aware that she was not replacing his mother. She also told him that while he was actually her cousin once removed he could call her Aunt Shirley for simplicity. She did make efforts to keep him fed, clothed, sheltered and educated. Through the years he’d spent with her she’d often remind him of those efforts. He heard her complain that he ate too much to afford keeping him fed, grew too fast to keep him in clothes that fit, was too big for their furniture, and most recently wasn’t smart enough to get a job to pay back those debts he owed her for taking him in. Shirley wasn’t exactly the warm and fuzzy type.

Grace had been delighted to find Ed was an easy going little brother who pretty much let her do anything to him as long as he was allowed to hang out with her. Dressing up, make up parties, you name it, if Grace wanted to do it Ed would be right there indulging his new big sister. She had no idea the young boy was starving for the lost love of his mother and would take anything resembling affection. All she knew was that Ed was a fun new plaything. She had more of a nurturing nature than her mother and until she reached that age where boys suddenly became attractive, she would cuddle up to him on the couch to watch TV with him.

When the puberty fairy started to fill her out in areas Ed was secretly enthralled by she began to restrict her physical signs of affection to ruffling his hair, pats on the back, an occasional kiss on the cheek, and the even more rare hug but she always had a smile and kind word for him. She saved the boy from a very lonely childhood and he loved her deeply for it. Though they were second cousins they grew up together as brother and sister.

Puberty struck early for Ed and he exploded upwards and sideways as his frame grew to support the muscle mass it was destined for. His keen eyed gym teacher started him on strength training early and his body filled out quickly. Shirley’s food bills were the source of many a verbal flaying during those days.

When Ed got to high school he was immediately enrolled in the football team. He wasn’t particularly aggressive but he was good at the game as he was bigger and stronger than most of the others. He continued to grow bigger and stronger than his peers. He wasn’t as smart as most of them but he got along with many of them regardless of his shyness.

Then came the fateful day when the coach walked into the showers to get the guys to stop clowning around. He saw Ed delaying his own shower until the others had left. He’d pushed the boy into the room and told him to get to it. Red faced, Ed hung up his towel and stepped into the shower. The room went silent until the coach’s voice boomed out.

“F--k, I guess we’re going to have to call you Mister Ed from now on.”

When some of the players asked him what he meant he just told them to look it up. Edward recalled the look of disgust on the man’s face as he left the shower room. When his teammates discovered ‘Mister Ed’ referred to a horse their laughter was a knife in his guts and his shame was complete. He couldn’t help that he was so big. Being called a freak by his teammates was particularly painful even if they did it as a joke. He did his best from that time on to avoid showering with the others either by being first or last. He avoided the coach most of all. When he could. He took to wearing loose fitting pants. Anything to hide his shame.

At home he moved his bedroom to the spare room in the basement. There was a small bathroom down there where he could take his shower without Shirley or Grace accidentally seeing him. He couldn’t bear the thought of them seeing his freakish nature.

Edward gave himself a shake when he found himself dwelling on that old history. He was eighteen now and he did his best to put up with the ribbing from the rest of his team though it still hurt.

He made his way into the card shop and began his hunt. He didn’t want something too drippy or sappy as Grace was not sentimental in the least. She was a practical woman. He wanted a pretty card with a simple heartfelt message.

While he was hunting he felt eyes on him and looked down the aisle to see Melanie Stanwell and Izzy Desmond looking at him and giggling. They worked in the store. With a bold look at Izzy, Melanie walked down the aisle towards him with a smile on her lips. She was a tall, slim girl with lovely brown eyes and long wavy brown hair which went to her mid-back. He’d heard the other guys talking about her, saying it was too bad she didn’t have big t--s to go along with her sleek curves. Ed just thought she was nicely proportioned. She wore a lot of rings which always drew his eyes to her long elegant fingers.

Edward was watching her nervously as she approached and gave her a friendly nod when she stopped beside him.

“Hello Ed.” She glanced at the pink flowery birthday card in his hand and looked back into his pale blue eyes. “Buying a card for a girlfriend?” she said boldly.

He jolted a little then shook his head. “Sister. It’s her birthday tomorrow.”

Melanie’s smile grew and she leaned in a little closer. “You need help finding a card for her?”

“Nah, I think I’ve got this. Thanks!” he mumbled, a blush traveling up his cheeks. Melanie’s eyes twinkled when she saw the effect she was having on the big man.

“Well if you need some help just let me know,” she smiled.

He nodded his thanks and she strutted back to Izzy with a coy smile at him over his shoulders. She caught him looking at her sweet little ass and her smile got wider and the sway in her hips got a little more pronounced. He quickly looked away as he felt himself begin to stiffen. He cursed under his breath, closed his eyes and ran through his mantra to calm himself. His pants, which had been baggy two years back, were no longer that way due to the increased muscle mass he’d put on from training for the football season. He couldn’t afford new pants so he couldn’t afford to get excited in these ones. He had to make an adjustment so glancing around to ensure the coast was clear he shifted himself in his pant leg.

From the burst of giggles he heard he realized the coast hadn’t been as clear as he’d hoped. Blushing madly he quickly settled on a card and went up to the cash to buy it.

Izzy was the cashier and she was doing her best to catch a glimpse at what he’d had to adjust. He paid and hustled out of the shop. The evening air felt especially cool against his reddened cheeks.

Next Episode

One Who Understands - S01 E02

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