Karen laughed. "Please, please, don't tell me this hideous, already-very-complicated love triangle then turned into an even square?"
"Oh, no. No. Definitely not," I laughed along with her as she sighed from what I can only imagine would be relief. I didn't blame her. Knowing my track record with men, it probably could have turned out that way somehow, just to add another level of fucked-up to my life.
"Landon's still one of my best friends now. And he's now actually dating my brother Brayden." I laughed awkwardly at the thought of Landon and myself ever having been anything more than mates. I found him attractive, sure; but he was always just a very good friend.
"Wait. I thought you mentioned he had a girlfriend back then?" Karen asked curiously.
"Yeah, he did: Keely. She was lovely and one of the most inspirational women I've known in life. She never took shit from anyone, least of all from guys. It wasn't a persona she put on to fit in or stand out, and she never needed to work at either. It was just who she was. Everything she said and did just quietly demanded equal treatment from and for everyone without making a big deal of it. She was my first exposure to a feminism I never knew existed until then. No crazy bra burning. No outspoken man-hating. Just coexisting peacefully and respectfully, and not making a big deal of it. My kind of feminist."
"I assume they're not together anymore then, if he's dating your brother?" she asked with a chuckle.
"No, but they were together for a long time. I think it was about five years or so. But they're still really good friends. Landon and Brayden haven't been together for that long. Only this past year. Landon lives nearby, which is great because we usually get to see each other at least a couple times a week. We do dinner at one of our houses, or he tags along on a Sunday morning to Madden's games if he doesn't have anything on.
"With Bray helping Seth coach Madden's team when he wasn't working, it meant that he was around a lot too. And, of course, being my brother the whole time I'd known him meant they already knew each other a bit anyway, but they obviously grew closer with time.
"Landon had never dated a guy before Bray, so finding himself attracted to my brother was a difficult thing for him to come to terms with, both in regards to him being male and my brother. I had always thought he was attracted to men though, or at the very least was very open and fluid in his sexuality, which I guess I was right about in the end."
I enjoyed being right, and I told Landon as much when he first disclosed to me that he had feelings for Brayden.
It was so amusing for me to remember back to those late night conversations with the both of them — Landon trying to grasp what was happening, and Brayden apologetic for developing feelings for my best friend. They would both tell me intimate details of how they felt about each other, which was weird at first because he was my baby brother after all. But I loved them both and was happy for them if it was what they both wanted. In the end, they made so much sense as a couple that I was surprised I didn't see it coming sooner.
"That day in the park, I'd be lying if I said Landon wasn't at least a little flirtatious with me, but I learned quickly that that was just his standard way of speaking to people. He's just a naturally flirtatious person. We've never been more than friends, which is handy considering his current choice of partner." I said, cringing at the thought of it. "He was just very attuned to his own sexuality, and didn't think that a girl should be made to feel bad for enjoying intimate things like that just because of their gender. If it was okay for guys to talk so freely about sex and not be made to feel guilty or ashamed about it, then a woman should be able to as well — a lesson I'm sure he learned from Keely along the way," I said proudly, glad to have now learned the same lesson she taught my best friend.
YOU ARE READING
Rise and FallChickLit
Life has reinvented the definition of rock bottom so many times for twenty-six-year-old Sadie Blake. With each revised edition, Sadie believes herself skilled enough to bury those rocks a fraction deeper in her memory. . . . but Life is much better...