Landon looked down at his textbook, some random worn down tome filled with pictures and descriptions, charts, the human body laid open and raw.
He could, after years of doing this –because as far as hobbies went, he was obsessed– tell you exactly how the human body worked. Left ventricle, right atrium. The femur, something along with the ankle, parts he wasn’t too fond of, they were hard to control bones and often got in the way. The trapezius, the most alluring of them all, that firm muscle lining the back, inching its way up towards and across your shoulder and connecting flawlessly to the curve of your neck. That tuff of muscle that juts if you wear your shirt like they tell you, a perfect cut for a perfect gym hardened body.
He reached between his legs for his highlighter, scratching the yellow marker across words in between the pages and theories, a subcontract for authenticity in the form of the human body, when the door flies open.
“Landon,” Brent is standing there at the door, a towel and the moisture of a shower being his only choice of weapons against gazing eyes, a questioning look drawn across his eyes –lacrimal caruncle….pupil…sclera. Landon quickly jots them down.
“Yes, Brent?” He hums his answers as his eyes jut from his page, to the lure of Brent’s eyes, to his sketchpad and back to his book, referencing shape and form, maybe emotion, if there were ever an empirical way to capture that.
“Have you seen my cologne? The one I let you borrow?”
He thumbs to a top shelf. Brent grins in way of appreciation, his high cheekbones wrapped around muscle –zygomaticus major. Landon couldn’t be sure when it came to Brent’s smiles. He was always smiling at him for no reason in particular; it was absolutely cheesy and breathtaking at the same time. It could be mirroring or the man really appreciated a good smile, Landon never asked.
He moves his way over, causally, his undressed state a throwaway thought. Landon’s eyes catch his movement as he reaches high for the cologne.
Brent’s body was a work of art. Anatomically speaking, it possessed a symmetry that was inherent, as if this was how perfection should look. Yes, hard work, the continuous flipping of food packaging to count calories, the copious intake of water, reps, lunges and dead lifts, narcissism…they all played a part. But you can only mold so much; most of it was filling in between the spaces, coloring in the lines. Landon’s pencil was sharp enough just to do that.
As he reaches, Landon notes, there are only so many times when a perfect specimen was within finger’s reach. Latissium dorsi, the stretch of back muscles slick with water…deltoid, an arm’s reach…gluteus minimus..the smooth line of his hip visible in the dip of exposed skin…gluteus maximus…that slight well under towel. He watches with completely unassociated thoughts as the water droplets touch places he’d never dared.
A gulp. Sternyhoid muscle, he thinks absently.
He snatches his thoughts back as Brent turns, still unbothered and still half dressed. Rectus abdominus. Pectoralis major. It’s hot. He sets his book on his lap. “Thanks, man.”
Landon clears his throat. “Yeah…sure.” He watches calf muscles undulate, the flex of his achellies heel as he exits the room.
He threw his book away. Who needed anatomy books, anyways?