For Apollo and Starbuck however it was no fun, they had to swot for their finals at the academy. But only a secton and it would be over, they tried to console themselves. Indeed, that secton passed finally and right after their last examination they went to their favourite swimming pool with artificial waves and with crazy golf. Apollo had passed them well, Starbuck absolutely precise.
The two searched for a place in the shadow, barely finding one. After having lain their things down they ran down to the shower and then right into the pleasantly cool water. As always they swam to the end of the basin where they couldn't stand anymore. Within minutes the waves came on and close to each other they conquered them, sometimes their legs or arms touching briefly. Neither of them did mind, in fact they both enjoyed it.
After that they lay down on their towels, talking, day-dreaming, relaxing and enjoying their closeness. Starbuck had never seen Apollo relaxed to that extent before and he liked it, knowing that the brunette was a very responsible man. He never let go off his duties, even when he was off.
'He must have gotten this from his Dad', Starbuck mused.
The Commander had certainly made sure his children knew and faced duty and responsibility.
The sun had dried them again, so they decided to head back into the water when the waves were due. Once again the two friends were between the high waves. But this time they weren't as focused as before and fate wanted them to crash, their lips colliding softly.
Apollo was appalled, his eyes growing wide-open; suddenly he realized he wanted this, that he wanted more… Starbuck broke the connection. This wasn't fair! It had almost been unbearable for him, already knowing that he wanted his friend, but also knowing he couldn'tnhave him for various reasons.
#1: Apollo barely had dates, be it with women or men. He just wasn't interested at the moment. It was more important to him to succeed at the academy.
#2: Apollo was certainly straight. Starbuck had never seen him with a guy, only with women.
#3: They were close enough to talk about their love lives and Apollo had never mentioned a guy.
#4: Apollo's type was completely different. The women had long, dark hair and bright eyes, a slim build, big boobs and were very intelligent.
From now on, Apollo seemed very absent-minded, not paying attention to the waves or anything that Starbuck said. He was glad when it started to rain soon, even though under other circumstances he would have liked to stay. But now he had to figure out what to do… if anything at all.
Back at the academy, Apollo mumbled something about having to do some researching and fled out of their room. That's how it remained the next few sectars. Apollo avoided Starbuck like the plague, making sure he was never alone with him. To their room he returned early and went straight to bed, so that he was asleep when the blonde got there. Starbuck wondered
what the hell he'd done to deserve that and came up blank. It couldn't be about this little almost kiss, could it? He'd always thought Apollo to be someone not being the type of guy who would freak out because of something like that.
But that it was. The realization that he loved Starbuck had freaked Apollo. His best male friend out of all people! How could he look him in the eye again? He definitely had to figure out what to do. His options were not great: Either acting as if nothing had happened at all or tell Starbuck what he felt and probably loosing his friendship forever. It never crossed his mind that his feelings might be returned. So he avoided him, postponing the decision he had to make. Apollo missed him dearly, although he thought it best for the both of them, not having reckoned with his friend who wasn't one to endure such treatment.
After a sectar when he returned — like the last centars — early to their room he found Starbuck already there, eyes sparkling with anger, hands on his hips. The blonde had never been mad at him, but Apollo knew him well enough to know he wasn't going to get out of here easily.
"Apollo, nice to see you again!"
Starbuck said ironically.
The brunette's tone was neutral, his mind racing trying to come up with something that was enough to calm his friend's temper.
"What's up? You're definitely avoiding me. For the sake of the Lords of Kobol, tell me what's going on!"
"I'm not! I just had a lot to do…"
Starbuck didn't let him finish, knowing that wasn't true. He was tempted to just turn away and leave, but he worshipped Apollo to much to do that. His friend had never lied to him, why now?
"Don't you dare!"
Apollo sighed inwardly, he should have known, that would never work with Starbuck.
"It's not because of the incident at the public pool, is it?"
Starbuck asked, suddenly gentle and calm. This question took Apollo aback, so that he didn't notice that his friend studied him closely to get the answer right from his reactions. Right he was, piercing green eyes widened and his friend's body stiffened. How could Starbuck have figured this out?
"Ähhh… Well… You have to know…"
Apollo stuttered, unable to find words. His determination not to tell him was almost broken and he allowed Starbuck to grab his arm and lead him to one of the beds to sit down.
" 'Pol, I've never seen you like this before, it scares me. Whatever it is, tell me, I'm not gonna bite!"
The nickname was his secret weapon. If that failed, everything else could be forgotten. Now Apollo searched eye contact finally, having avoided it the whole time. That was not unnoticed by a thankful Starbuck who saw this as a progress, as well as the deep breath the brunette took.
"Promise me you won't hate me."
What the hell? Why should he suddenly hate his best friend, hell, his only friend? This was getting weirder and weirder…
"Of course! I promise it. But I can't see why you'd need that. Don't you know you're my best friend and come what may come I'll never hate you?"
These words were spoken with favour, every single word stressed, so that Apollo felt that Starbuck meant what he'd just said.
"This… this incident at the public pool, it triggered something… Somehow I questioned what I felt for you… If maybe it was more than friendship…"
Starbuck listened intensely, focused on every single word. Did this mean what he hoped it meant? Would his dreams come true? He'd craved for it, but had never guessed Apollo saw more in him than a good friend. The brunette was obviously at a loss of words now, seemingly uncomfortable. The blonde looked straight in his eyes, searching for confirmation, then he followed an impulse and leaned forward. Their lips collided once more gently, a feather light touch that sent chills through them. This time Apollo didn't freak, instead he reached out for Starbuck, pulling him closer and deepening the kiss until it was a full-blown, passionate one, their tongues dancing slowly. When they broke the kiss because their need for air became unbearable, he smiled happily:
"You got it!"
"Sure… Didn't you know I could read minds?"
At that, they both just loved. Just typically Starbuck…