Acting 101 Ch. 02: The Friend Zone


This is the second chapter in a series of so far indeterminate length. While it begins with something of a TLDR, I’d fully recommend that you read Chapter One first to really understand what is happening.

Thanks for the views and ratings on Chapter One. Based on them, you liked it.

As with all my stories, should you be looking for ‘Realism’, just move on. I aim for ‘Ridiculously Plausible’.


Friday morning, I awoke relaxed and happy.

I was relaxed, because I had had the best orgasm in my life the night before. Furthermore, it was the first in a long time when I wasn’t alone for any orgasm, of whatever quality.

I was happy because I had a date that night– a first date with my very good friend Steff, who had helped out with that awesome orgasm the night before.

My mind also spun with confusion and uncertainty, on a host of issues, all of which, in one way or another, involved Steff.

To start with, you may have noticed the order of things. Spectacular ejaculation first, first date second is not a natural progression, at least not with anyone I’ve ever known. Steff had become one of my best, if not my best friend over the course of the last semester in which we shared Acting 101 as a class, but our relationship had from the very start been unspokenly but quite firmly as buddies… with no benefits. Well, no benefits other than a neck rub here and there from me to Steff while we were in class. Lots of people confidently assumed that we had been dating all semester, but we were both exasperatedly firm that we were not dating in any way whenever anyone suggested that we were. And now suddenly we actually were going on a date. What the hell did that all mean? Much of my body was primarily concerned with speculating about that spectacular orgasm and when more might be in the offing. Tonight? Some time later than that? Gulp, never, if things didn’t go well? My relationship and dating record was not spectacular, though through no fault of my own… I thought. I hoped.

The rest of me had a bunch of other issues that kept intruding into my speculations about Steff and my penis. The central focus of these further issues was Meredith, whom I’d only met that Sunday. Remember I said that Steff had ‘helped’ with that amazing orgasm? Yeah, Meredith had been the other helper, and moreover, had really been the instigator. See, I also had an upcoming date with Meredith, a first date as well, on Saturday–as in the day after my first date with Steff. Both of those dates had been made Tuesday, two days before the amazing orgasm. Meredith had asked me out with Steff right there in the room, and Steff had immediately asked me out as well, in response. The two, I discovered, are very good-naturedly competitive. Thursday, that competition got deliciously out of hand and resulted in Meredith alternating between demonstrating oral skills miles beyond anything in my limited twenty-three year-old experience with teaching Steff a wonderful selection of those same skills, using me as the teaching aid. It was the best… God, I don’t know how many… minutes of my life.

Meredith is utterly beautiful: taller than Steff, much older than Steff, bigger-breasted than Steff, and otherwise nearly as spectacularly hot as Steff. And oh wait, here’s the topper: Did I mention that Meredith is Steff’s fucking step-mother? Oh, and she’s twelve years older than me, too.

So as far as I was concerned, I clearly was in the best situation in the history of guys, but it is easy to see why I was also nervous as a double-espresso about the myriad of ways I, or possibly forces beyond my control, could make everything blow up like the Hindenburg.

I popped out of bed and put my nervous energy into a good breakfast. I constructed one of my favorite protein fruit smoothies, but used double the normal pineapple. It had been suggested that I ought to eat even more pineapple, and… it’s not important. Gulping down the new concoction, I resolved to focus all my mental energies on tonight’s date, and ignore any Meredith-related complications. Multi-threading my analysis of the entire situation all at once was more likely to make me lock up than be insightful. And I needed to concentrate on Steff because she was today… and because she was Steff. If you have an awesome friend, who is also stupidly hot, and you suddenly see light at the end of the Friend Zone, you would be crazy to think about much else until you had to.

Steff had to be my ultimate priority.

For today, at least….

That was a dangerous proviso. Nevertheless, I couldn’t help making it, even if I then immediately tried to suppress it.

I only had two classes on Fridays. At 10:30, I had Astronomy. It was a course that I was taking for my science distribution requirement. The professor was just awful, but I was getting an A anyway. For me, the material was easy to self-teach, though I did feel really sorry for those kids who needed some actual instruction. For most of the quarter up until now, I had occupied my asyabahis yeni giriş mind during class checking out the copious number of Freshman and Sophomore girls who made up a majority of the small auditorium, many of whom were reasonably to quite attractive. That day, however, I focused my thoughts on plans for that night, and on Steff… and occasionally about Meredith, damnit.

Steff had been the one to ask me out, but she at least was letting me choose where to eat, within certain parameters. What we were doing afterward, she was keeping on a Need To Know basis. And as long as my dinner choice was within specified bounds, I apparently did not need to know. It seemed a little crazy, but I genuinely trusted Steff in general, so I rolled with it and tried not to let my mind speculate too much about extreme possibilities like wild, underground, live sex shows, or after-dinner petit fours at the Junior League Tea Room.

About half-way through class, I decided on a bistro kind of place in the required Midtown area for dinner. I knew it had good food, and was always crowded and loud. I chose it because it offered the kind of subtle privacy you get from lots of two-person booths and a crowd that is there to hang with their friends, no See And Be Seen. I slipped my phone onto the desk in front of me and opened OpenTable to make a reservation. I was almost done when my fucking professor took notice of me in class for the first time all semester.

“Mr. Talbott,” he called out, interrupting his own convoluted and slightly wrong description of the phenomenon at issue that morning. “Have you just received some particularly important meme on your phone? Perhaps it is Astronomy-related and you’d like to share it with the class?”

I’d never spoken to the guy. Not once. But of course he knew who I was. I hadn’t missed a point on a test all semester. And now he had a chance to ruffle my feathers. His face wore a shit-eating grin.

My face showed my confusion, and embarrassment. “Oh, no sir! I’m… I’m just making a reservation on Open Table,” I replied before I realized that was the Wrong Answer.

“I see,” he said, with mock seriousness and the rest of the class looked on with glee at something interesting happening in this class for the first time in memory. “A Hot Date tonight?” That got a laugh. And a rise out of me.

“Yes, sir,” I said, probably too smugly for my own good. “A neutron star hot date,” I added, going for the Astronomy joke. Because he is a shitty professor, less than half the class got my joke.

My second class was supposed to be Shakespeare, but I decided to cut. I loved my professor in that class. She was this dear little old lady who knew the Bard like the back of her hand. She was brilliant but totally shy, and the class had taken to dragging her off to a nearby bar on Fridays instead of sitting in the classroom. Get a glass of sherry into the woman and she starts talking in a voice you don’t have to strain to hear. But she never took attendance on Fridays, and I was behind in my reading, so I cut for the first time. I wanted the time for more important things.

Instead of making fun of Malvolio and his crossed garters, I took a shower and scrubbed myself almost raw. I spent forever shaving, making sure I didn’t cut myself, but leaving my jaw smooth as calve’s leather. I fretted for a good while over which shirt to wear, finally settling on one of my more exuberantly colored and patterned ones. My best jeans completed the ensemble.

Then I changed out of the jeans. They were pretty tight, and the chances of a boner or two that evening were good. If I popped a full erection, it would look like I was wearing a codpiece in those jeans, not to mention how uncomfortable it would feel. I settled instead on my dark gray slacks. They were probably too tight as well, but at least I’d have a chance to hide things.

At long last, I managed to hurriedly complete my preparations for this all-important date… and discovered it was not yet four. I was picking up Steff at seven, and even with Atlanta traffic, I was an hour or more from needing to leave to get her. To while away the time productively, I practiced my part of the scene she and I were performing together soon for our final in Acting 101.

It is a sexually suggestive scene, and I enjoyed imagining Steff in my arms as I recited much of the dialog. Then I added in my newly acquired knowledge of what Steff looked like topless and really went to town practicing those lines. Then I realized I had gotten all sweaty merely rehearsing and ran to take yet another shower. By the time I had redressed in a different, non-sweaty shirt, I was later than I wanted to be to get to Steff’s on time.

Fortunately I have a Tesla, and used its speed and acceleration a lot more aggressively that I usually did to get to her house in the suburbs on time.

I swung into the front driveway with barely minutes to spare and sprang out. A knock on the door was answered by Steff surprisingly quickly. Steff continued to live with Meredith after asyabahis giriş her father died and had that woman been home as well, instead of pulling an all-nighter at the office that night, Meredith would likely have enjoyed answering the door herself and making me wait for Steff to get ready… probably while bending over a lot in front of me while I waited. Quit wandering off-topic on the fantasies tonight, Scott! Fortunately, Steff was, as always, an amazing babe and did not try to play any damned Make Him Wait games.

All she did as she opened the door was smile, waggle her eyebrows, and exclaim, “Are you ready for this? We are going on a date!”

“Your chariot awaits,” I said sweeping my arm toward the car and bowing low. I had been mildly heartened by the tiny waver I caught in her voice. I needed somebody besides me to be nervous about all this!

We slid into my car and headed toward the restaurant. On the way down, our conversation was smooth and normal, the easy chatter of good friends. Far less awkward than any first date I’d ever had, but a lot less charged too. That was weird.

Dinner was similarly a hangout between friends. We each nursed a single large beer, and had fun making fun of how bad the onion rings were that night. It was fun at first, but the fact started to hang over our conversation that we were acting and feeling more like two buddies hanging out for chow than two people on a first date who were both attracted to each other. Both of us were attracted to the other, right? It wasn’t just me, right?

Our conversation began to wane as I fretted. It was ridiculous to be doubting like this, right? I mean, this girl had quite gleefully and energetically sucked my cock almost exactly 24 hours earlier. She had to be into me. But that whole blowjob had been part of Steff and Meredith’s apparently long history of gleefully competing about everything. It might have been their first time competing around a guy, but still, it had been Meredith egging her on.

Steff suddenly took a long sip of beer and a deep breath. She leaned forward, her hands on the table in front of me. She looked me in the eye and said, “Look, I’m glad we are finally out on a date. I… I want to thank you for finally letting me out of the Friend Zone.” She saw my eyes widen at that, and she went on in an almost panicked voice, “You are letting me out of the Friend Zone, right?”

For once, I didn’t do or say anything stupid when the bolt came from the blue. Instead, I lifted my hands and laid them on the table as well, letting my fingertips rest on hers. It was the first time I think I’d ever touched her hands with mine, aside from a few fist bumps. I leaned forward and stared into her deep blue, magnetic eyes and said with soft sincerity, “What the everliving fuck are you taking about? I’m the one who has been jammed into the Friend Zone the whole time I’ve known you!”

We stared at each other for a long moment, then both burst into deep, enjoyable, but slightly hysterical laughter. My fingertips never left hers. As our peals of laughter, which had been loud enough to draw a few looks, even in the crowded anonymity of this place, died out, I went on. “Look, you are easily my best friend I’ve yet made at this university. You are probably my best friend in the world right now. And you are definitely, by a country mile, my best female friend ever. And we’ve been friends almost since the moment we met. But you are also, in my opinion, the hottest girl in this university. I’d have asked you out a hundred times already if it had not been so plain to me that you totally wanted to be ‘just friends’. I even convinced myself that you were right.” I left my fingertip on hers, but that was all I did.

Steff just stared at me, her expression warring between flushing at my flattery and irritation at my words. “Listen, asshole, you treated me like I was just one of the guys from day one. I love that you are my friend. But it has been a weird friendship. We never hang out as just the two of us. And you never seem the least bit dissatisfied with that. Meanwhile, you would regularly, without meaning to, do things that left me positively thirsty over how hot you are. I’d say my predicament is the fucking definition of the Friend Zone.”

We stared at each other a little resentfully for a moment. Then we both smiled ruefully. “I don’t know how this date is going to go tonight,” I said, “but how’d you like to go out again next Friday?”

Steff chuckled and said, “Sure, what do we have to lose, except the last two and a half months.”

I slid my hands forward and Steff flipped hers over beneath mine. We held hands and just looked at each other for a bit. But the moment did not hold for long, as our sense of humor took over again. In minutes, the intensity of our conversation was entirely gone and we are arguing about baseball and the Braves.

As I was paying the check, I begged again, “Okay, how are we doing on time, and what are we going to do next? I’ve been dying to asyabahis güvenilirmi know.” I even threw in a leer for good measure, since I half-hoped (half?) that the answer would be that we were going to go back to Steff’s house and fuck like bunnies.

Alas, she laughed and replied, “We are good on time. The JokeDome is only a couple of blocks from here.”

“The JokeDome?” I asked, aghast. “You did not agree to join Tony and Kimmie on their improv team, did you?”

“Fuck, no,” laughed Steff, who didn’t want to get up in front of strangers without written material any more than I did. “But they are competing tonight and they are our friends. Kimmie got us a front-row table, so we are going to go support them,” she added firmly.

“And laugh our asses off at them if they suck, come Tuesday in class,” I added.


The JokeDome was a shoe-string little space that used to be a large Gymboree. You could still see some of the childish decorations on the walls. The ‘stage’ was a platform raised barely half a foot, and seating was little tables and motley chairs from thrift shops and garage sales. Worse, they only sold beer and wine. But the place was rapidly becoming a success. It was sold out that night, so getting a prime table had been a demonstration of the value of having connections. Three teams were competing that evening, and only Tony and Kimmie were a duo, The others were foursomes.

As the teams went back and forth, trying their hands at improv games with direction from the judges and the audience, it was clear why Tony had been so whiny lately about wanting Steff and me to join their team. Two players, no matter how talented, were at a distinct disadvantage to four. Still, our friends gave it a good show, and kept barely within striking distance of the other teams as things went on. “I hate to admit it, but they are both pretty good,” whispered Steff to me at one point, and I had to agree.

Things reached a point where I was pretty sure that Tony and Kimmie had been finally, mathematically eliminated. The next round, the two of them were assigned a crime scene scenario. Tony naturally assumed the role of a cop interviewing a victim. Kimmie rapidly scored some points by deciding that the crime she was a victim of was someone chaining a dildo to her bicycle while she was in class! It got a good laugh, but I could tell they were struggling with where to go next, beyond the lock being a Kryptonite and well-nigh unbreakable. I was just feeling sorry for Tony when the fucker struck.

“I’ll need to canvas for witnesses, ma’am,” he said officiously, then peered into the crowd as if searching for a victim. But he knew right where we were sitting… “You there, lady!” He called out, stepping up right in front of Steff, who looked at him like she’d like to feed him his dog’s entrails. Unfazed, he went on, “A crime has been committed, and I’d like to ask if you saw anything.” Steff looked at me for rescue.


She was the one who brought us here. I grinned widely and broadly gestured that she should respond. The crowd that was close enough to see the byplay (which was most of the people) laughed at Steff’s irritation and booed me for my betrayal. She slowly stood and moved into the lights. There were a few low whistles when people got a look at… my date.

“Ma’am,” Tony began, but Steff interrupted him, demanding to know the nature of the crime. When he answered, she started torturing Tony by making him describe the imaginary dildo in more and more excruciating detail. Kimmie, who might not be as funny as Tony (or me, or Steff), but who possessed zero shame, jumped in with various graphic details. Once Steff recognized that they had exhausted the bit and had thoroughly punished Tony for dragging her up there by making him talk about fake veins on fake dicks, she ended it by saying, “Okay, I get it now. Sorry, but no. I didn’t see anything.”

Then the jerk turned on me and said, “But that guy was looking the other way from you. He probably saw everything then!” Every boo I had heard for hanging Steff out to dry was now a laugh at my trapped ass.

But I think four moves ahead, and had time to think about this inevitable outcome, so I was ready. I trudged up onto the platform, and delivered my bland setup. It went over like a lead ballon, and Tony vamped to try to cover my boring sally. I tried a sudden second idea, and it went okay, but you could feel the audience feeling like we were failing. I waited as long as I could, then got ready to circle back to my initial setup.

Then Steff paid off my setup for me. She had recognized the opportunity I’d provided, and delivered an even better version of my intended follow through than I’d planned of myself. And because it wasn’t me who paid off the joke, it looked a whole lot more ‘improv-y’. The audience lost it. I saw two of the judges lose it. Kimmie lost it. Tony deadpanned a perfect topper, and ended the sketch on a perfect high note, proving he was a lot better at this than the crew in that viral video he showed me the week before. Tony and Kimmie bowed. Steff and I did not. We weren’t the players, after all. Tony waved at us to bow as well, and when we still didn’t, he slapped Steff on her perfect ass and shouted, “Bow!” Steff glared at him, I glared at him, but we bowed… to loud applause.

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