The Rush 1: The Hazing Begins (Gay SPH)
Rodger stood in front of the big, brick house emblazoned with the frat’s letters. He’d seen it before on campus tours and visits with his family, but today it felt bigger and more imposing against the overcast sky. Rodger’s grandfather, father, and older brother had all been members of SPH during their time at the college. He knew he had to make it into the frat to continue his family legacy. Plus, hearing all his brother’s stories of wild parties and sexy girls made sure that Rodger had fantasized about joining SPH for years.
Rodger had walked over with a few of the guys from his hall. He’d met them on the first night of college and bonded over a shared love of rum, sports, and tits. Kevan was the boy Rodger most admired; at six-foot-four and 250 pounds, Kevan was a tank. He’d been the star running back in high school with infinite prospects for college football until an early-season herniated disc dashed his aspirations. Rather than being bitter, Kevan seemed to take it in stride. “No football means no dry season, after all,” he’d shrugged. He was an easy-going charmer, already popular among the student body after just a few weeks.
Lance was a pretty-boy type: blonde hair, green eyes, a killer smile and almost no body hair. He played club lacrosse and told a lot of stories about his summers on Cape Cod. Rodger knew that Lance was just another rich asshole, but he also knew that making connections with rich assholes is what joining a frat is all about. These were the people who got you high-paying jobs even when your grades tank from all the partying. SPH alums were spread all over Fortune 500 companies, Big 4 accounting firms, tech powerhouses and innovative start-ups. Getting into SPH meant being set for life.
Rounding out the crew was Tony. Tony was a short, rotund New York Italian with a wild mop of curly black hair. He was wearing a graphic t-shirt, basketball shorts, and New Balance sneakers and sporting a patchy, unkempt beard. His wire-framed glasses always sat a little askew. But Tony was hilarious, not to mention the most genuine and warm person Rodger had met at school, and his winning personality made up for his lack of dress sense.
For his own part, Rodger stood at about six feet tall. He was fit but not particularly cut, and the freshman fifteen had definitely started to pad out his midsection. He was proud of the well-manscaped carpet of honey-brown hair that covered his chest, stomach, and pubes, which he’d been able to grow since age fourteen. Early puberty leaving him taller and more masculine than a lot of his classmates had given Rodger a lot of confidence. It helped him make friends and date girls in high school — being captain of the soccer team certainly didn’t hurt, either. But now he was a little fish in a big pond, and could only feel anxious.
“Well, lads, should we head in?” Kevan asked.
Lance started walking up the steps without answering. “I hope they have girls here.”
“Recruitment’s supposed to be a total sausage party,” Tony chimed in. “They don’t let you hang with the girls until you’re a member.”
“It’s supposed to be so we all bond,” Rodger explained, “as brothers.”
Lance scoffed. “You can’t fuck a brother.”
“Not with that attitude,” joked Tony.
The boys were greeted inside by older members of the frat wearing matching green shirts. “SPH Recruitment 2022” was written on the front tee pocket. On the back was the frat’s sigil, a ruler with a snake wrapped around it — a vestige from back when the frat was a society for medical engineers.
Now, the frat was open to everyone, as evinced by the 100 or so young men who’d gathered in the SPH basement for recruitment. The first night was meant to be a simple mixer. The goal was to talk to as many brothers as possible. Rumor had it that the members figured out who to cut from Round 1 after just a few hours.
Lance seemed to know a lot of the other recruits; there was always a boarding school contingent. Kevan and Tony were natural extroverts and had no trouble working their way into conversations. Rodger, however, could feel his heart pounding in his chest, not sure where to go or who to talk to. Surely someone with this much social awkwardness wasn’t SPH material…
“Hey, are you Rodger?” he heard a voice ask. He turned around to see four green-shirted guys standing behind him. “We’re Aaron’s friends; we knew you were his brother as soon as you walked in. It’s uncanny!”
“He was all of our big brother when we were pledging,” said another one of the guys.
Rodger smiled. He quickly slid into easy conversation with the brothers, who told him stories about his brother’s infamous escapades: scaling the Sciences Building in nothing but his boxers, making his way through the entire women’s crew team in one semester, chartering a bus on a whim and taking his whole frat class to the beach.
Rodger wanted the guys to know he was just as cool as his brother. He saw an opportunity when one of Aaron’s friends, Carter, talked about how he was banging twins who didn’t know he was seeing them both. “Senior year I dated twins who did know,” Rodger said. “We all went to bed together.” That story was true, if embellished: the girls were weirdly inseparable, and while they did have several sleepovers, he’d never fucked either of them.
“Ha,” chuckled Oliver, another of the group, “I’d expect nothing less from a Higgins.”
Carter had called over a few other guys, telling them about the recruit who dated twins in high school. Suddenly, Rodger was being pulled into all sorts of conversations. He started feeling magnanimous, his nerves fading and his confidence kicking back in.
After an hour or so, he spotted Tony standing by the drinks table alone. “Hey man,” he said, pouring himself a Jack and coke. “How’s it going?”
“Not great,” Tony admitted. “One of the other recruits spent like 10 minutes roasting me in front of a bunch of brothers for my weight and stuff.”
Rodger scowled. “What an asshole. Don’t listen to him. I mean, just look at the president of the frat — he’s bigger than you! I don’t think they’ll want someone around who makes fun of big guys.”
Speaking of, the frat president himself had walked to the front of the room and started signaling for everyone’s attention. “Everyone shut the fuck up,” some of the brothers bellowed through the crowd.
Kyle McCloud was massive. Five-foot-eleven, three hundred pounds, he looked like a lineman who’d pudged out after his career ended, but in the way that you still wouldn’t want to mess with him. He had a reputation for his temper, but he was fiercely loyal to his brothers and committed to the fraternity. It was under Kyle’s tenure that the frat had adopted a zero-tolerance policy for sexual harassment against women. The man ran a tight ship.
“Gentlemen, thank you for coming by today. We hope you’ve enjoyed drinking our alcohol and meeting our brothers. But being a member of SPH is more than getting drunk and hanging out. We cultivate real men here. You’ve been evaluated on your conversation skills since you came in. Our members become CEOs, entrepreneurs, philanthropists, disruptors — you need to be able to hold your own among other leaders. That said, some of you have demonstrated that you are fucking useless.”
You could hear a pin drop. The convivial atmosphere from the previous few hours had changed in an instant to one of anxious tension. It was time for the first round of cuts.
“The following boys have been identified as unable to hold a conversation, or have a personality so awful no one would tolerate being around them. That, or you’re here as a joke: Eddie Duke, Jack Brennan, Louis Anders…”
One by one, the rejected pledges started filing out of the basement. Tony gently nudged Rodger, pointing out the boy who’d bullied him earlier as one of the rejects. Rodger was heartened to know that the frat wouldn’t take in guys like that.
All in all, about 20 guys had gotten cut, leaving 80 or so pledges. Kyle directed the group to head outside to the back yard, and Rodger and Tony filed outside with the rest of the boys. The yard was large but unmaintained; the grass was mostly all dead, leaving caked, dry earth to cover most of the surface. Empty beer cans were littered everywhere, between broken lawn chairs and picnic tables painted in SPH’s signature green and orange.
“Why are they watering the lawn?” someone asked from behind Rodger. “There’s no grass…”
Indeed, two brothers had already been outside, dousing the ground with water. It was after dark as well, which made the scene even stranger.
Kyle had made his way back to the front of the crowd. “Alright, gentlemen. There’s more to being in SPH than being a conversationalist. We expect physical strength and endurance out of our men as well. You have to be well-rounded and take care of yourself. We have a reputation to maintain here.”
“That’s fucking ironic,” muttered the same guy who’d commented on the lawn.
Unfortunately, he’d made his quip during a lull in Kyle’s intro. “What was that?” Kyle asked. “Does one of you have something to say?”
There was a moment of painfully awkward silence as no one came forward.
“Alright, if no one tells me who spoke out of turn, then we’ll just cut the whole back of the group,” Kyle boomed. There was a short scuffle as guys started pushing the culprit forward, not wanting to rat on their fellow pledge but not wanting to lose out themselves.
“Now,” said Kyle, when the boy was finally in front of him, “why don’t you repeat what you said?”
“I said that’s fucking ironic,” the boy mumbled.
“What’s fucking ironic?”
“It’s fucking ironic that your fat ass is telling us we have to be fit to join this frat!” Without missing a beat, Kyle had lifted the kid a few inches off the ground and launched him several feet into the mud.
“If there’s one thing we believe here at SPH,” said Kyle, “it’s to never judge a book by its cover. You’re cut, by the way.”
Rodger had already heard tales of Kyle from his brother. Kyle quickly earned a “firm but fair” reputation first as the frat’s social chair, then as its president. As terrifying as it was seeing that guy thrown by a man three times his size, no one present could deny that he had brought it on himself. As the reject made his way out through the gate, Rodger noticed that while he was covered in mud and clearly humiliated, he was not hurt at all.
“Boys, you’re army crawling,” said Kyle. “You start here on my signal; you end at the other side of the yard where those brothers are standing. Back 20 get cut.”
Rodger weirdly felt a sense of relief. He’d done plenty of army crawls through the mud for soccer practice, and it wasn’t like it’d been years since he was at his peak. The row of brothers marking the finish line on the other side of the lawn were about fifty yards away. Strenuous but not impossible.
The yard was large enough for all 80 pledges to line up at the starting line, although there wasn’t much wiggle room between them. Rodger was flanked by two strangers, having been separated from Tony and his other buddies. Almost in unison, the men got down on their bellies and prepared for the race.
“On your marks,” called Kyle, his voice faint from the other side of the yard, “get set… Go!”
There was an immediate flurry of sound — arms brushing against each other, mud squelching, men grunting — as the pledges fought for their futures. Rodger made it roughly halfway before he started to get winded, but the effort wasn’t so bad at first. It felt good to be exercising after neglecting to take care of his body during orientation. He took comfort in the feeling of the bodies pressed on either side of him; he knew to speed up if he felt one getting too far ahead, and their warmth reminded him he was not going through this alone.
Rodger finally popped up at the finish line, feeling a rush of endorphins and a sense of pride and excitement. He looked around to see that he was among the first to finish — he spotted Kevan, no surprises there, and a few other athletic guys already standing behind the row of brothers. Rodger spent some time looking for Tony — he was worried about his overweight friend’s chances in the race.
“What a night,” said Kevan, walking over to Rodger with a twinkle in his eye. “did your brother tell you about all this?”
Rodger shook his head. “No, he wanted it to be a surprise. Which so far it has definitely been.”
“Well, someone I was talking to told me there were 5 Tenets.”
“Yeah, of the frat. Like core values. We’ve been through two…”
“Charisma and strength?” Rodger asked, to which Kevan nodded. “But what are the other three?”
The brother closest to them turned around. “Shut up,” he snapped. “You’ll learn them as we go, and only brothers know the full five.”
Rodger spotted a mass of mud heading towards them — this was by far the pledge with the worst luck on the ground. When he was close enough, Rodger recognized him as Lance. “Whoa,” said Kevan, “what happened to you?”
“This is such bullshit,” Lance spat, wiping more mud from his face. “I wore my fucking new Balenciaga sneaks to this and now they’re totally scuffed.”
“Worth it for SPH,” was all Rodger said in return. Lance scowled.
Rodger turned his attention back to the yard; there was still maybe half of the pack left. He was trying to keep an eye out for Tony, but it was hard to make sense of the muddy bodies writhing almost on top of each other.
“Alright,” one of the brothers yelled out. “We’re down to 21 on the field. One slot left. Who wants it?”
The remaining men picked up their pace, invigorated knowing that everything was on the line. One guy who was all the way in the back stood up and left wordlessly, realizing that he had no way to catch up. The throng of pledges and brothers gathered around the finish line near where the two frontrunners would cross — a skinny Latino guy who couldn’t seem to get traction, and — Tony! Rodger couldn’t believe it. He started cheering for his friend; Kevan joined in and soon the crowd was split between cheering on Tony and cheering on the other guy.
Tony was behind, but only by a head. “Put your hips into the forward motion,” Rodger called out. This seemed to be the piece that Tony was missing — swinging his thick midsection with each extension sent him careening forward just that much more through the mud. After a few beats, Tony’s curly, black hair was sticking past his opponent’s head, then his belly surpassed him, then his knees–
“We have a winner!” called out a brother. Rodger and Kevan drew Tony into a big embrace, with the rest of the pledges piling on. Rodger felt a swell of camaraderie, like he was home.
Everyone gathered back on the paved part of the yard, shivering from the cold mud on the brisk September night. Kyle emerged from the back door, red plastic cup in hand, and stood in front of the pledges once more.
“Well done. You’ve made it through two rounds of cuts, representing our frat’s commitment to cultivating charming and healthy young men. Now, we have one more opportunity for you to show off your stuff tonight, but first we need to get you cleaned up. Strip down to your underwear.”
Everyone knew better than to complain or question Kyle. With some nervous laughter, the boys started undressing. Rodger was just glad that the pledges weren’t being made to get naked — he had no qualms being in his boxers around these other guys, but had reservations about going any further.
Rodger looked around as the boys got back in a single row along the edge of the patio. Most of the guys were wearing boxer briefs, with baggy boxers like Rodger’s a close second. A handful of the guys were wearing briefs, including both Lance and Tony. Three or four unlucky guys were wearing jock straps, their asses now exposed — including Kevan.
A few of the brothers wolf-whistled. “Look at these studs,” another called out mockingly.
Members of the frat were walking up and down the line of pledges, collecting their clothes into big cloth laundry bags. Rodger panicked seeing this.
“For being such good sports,” Kyle announced, “we are going to do your laundry for you tonight. Save you the fifty cents on the dorm washers. But here’s the catch — you are to stay in the underwear you are currently wearing until you return for Day 2 tomorrow. Just those underwear.”
This time, some guys did whisper amongst each other — no one could really gauge if he was being serious. No one had quite enough time to react, though, as suddenly a group of brothers behind them unleashed cold hoses on the pledges.
Rodger turned around, using the opportunity to rinse the rest of the mud off his face. Slowly but surely, most of the other guys made the most of the situation, ‘showering’ in the hose water.
“About time you fucks bathed,” said Kyle with an impish grin. “Now get out of our house.”
The guys closest to the gate scooped up their phones and wallets and started ambling out of the yard. After a few beats, a giant cheer erupted in the distance.
The redhead next to Rodger turned around. “Those are girls’ voices.”
Sure enough, the brothers had invited the members and pledges of SPH’s sister sorority, Epsilon Nu Mu, to catch the young men in their undies. The ENM girls had formed a human tunnel of sorts, stretching from the front of the SPH house to the end of Greek Row. Now soaking wet, a lot of the guys with tighter underwear were displaying prominent outlines of their cocks, to say nothing of the dudes with white underwear. Rodger caught up with Tony, whose thick black bush could now be clearly made out through his wet tighty whities. All the pledges began running through the tunnel of women; a few yards ahead, Rodger saw one of the girls slap Kevan’s exposed, round ass.
Once out of the tunnel, Rodger and Tony caught up with Kevan and Lance, and together they sprinted back home to their dorm.
All four guys had roommates who weren’t rushing, so they settled into the empty common room to debrief. It was nearly four in the morning, so the hall was dead empty, even for a Friday night. Gathered in four armchairs arranged in a circle, the boys knew they could convene without being caught.
Rodger slumped back in his chair, running his fingers absentmindedly through his chest hair. He and Lance lived closer to the same end of their hall, so they’d run into each other in that communal bathroom a few times. He’d seen Lance’s slender, hairless torso and long, graceful legs before — the body of a natural-born runner.
Kevan and Tony were closer to the other bathroom, so Rodger hadn’t seen them in states of undress before. Kevan was as chiseled as expected, with a six pack of abs and ham hocks for thighs. His chest was shaved — unlike Lance’s, whose smattering of peach fuzz between his pecs hinted that he just couldn’t grow any — with a splash of jet-black curls on his belly leading into his jockstrap.
Tony was sitting cross-legged, his ample bosom hanging down over his belly, all of it coated in the same thick hair that graced his back and shoulders. Rodger noticed some real bulk under Tony’s fat — he shouldn’t have doubted his friend in the mud race.
“What time are we supposed to be back at the house?” Lance asked.
“Eight P.M.,” said Kevan through a yawn.
“So we have to stay in our underwear all day tomorrow? I feel like if we just show up in our drawers…”
“You think they haven’t thought of a way to check up on us?” Rodger asked pointedly.
Tony shrugged. “I was going to spend my Saturday playing video games in my underwear anyway.”
The boys all laughed. “Hey, Tone,” joked Lance, “I was glad I wasn’t the only guy who picked out their underwear on laundry day. I can’t believe I was in these things for this. I would have made sure to have my Calvins clean if I knew.”
“Nah, man,” countered Tony. “I’m a firm believer in the tighty whitey. I always feel so supported. Not sure how you deal with those shorts, Rodge.”
“I like to let the boys roam freely. Cage-free eggs, if you will.”
“Boys,” laughed Kevan, “my ass and taint are fully out. So y’all can quit your complaining.”
After a while more of banter, the guys disbanded to head to bed. They all agreed they had every intention of sleeping in — both to sleep off the copious amounts of alcohol they’d drunk, and to make it through as much of the day as possible before sprinting back to Greek Row for Day 2. Rodger tiptoed past his roommate, slid under the covers, and rested his head on the pillow…
What felt like moments later, fanfare erupted outside Rodger’s window. Literal fanfare, from trumpets, cracking through his pounding skull like an ice pick. Soon, the trumpets were joined by tubas and trombones, then cymbals and drums, and finally the winds to round it out — the school’s marching band had circled the building, playing the fight song at full blast.
Rodger looked at the clock — it was 9 a.m., mere hours after he’d gone to bed.
And then, Kyle McCloud’s familiar nasally voice resonated through a megaphone, “SPH pledges. Attention all SPH pledges in Advisory Hall. Report downstairs immediately. Anyone who takes longer than 5 minutes to get here is cut.”
Rodger’s heart started racing; he leapt out of bed and sprinted out the door. The 20 or so other pledges who lived in his building were also scurrying through the hallways; all of the other students had gathered in their doorways to watch the spectacle. Rodger felt dozens eyes on his half-naked body.
When he made it out front, he was greeted by ten or so brothers, the entire marching band, and the 40 other pledges from different dorms. Rodger scanned the crowd as he fell into line with the full group. A few of the guys from Advisory hall were still sporting morning wood, or at least half-chubs. Kevan slid in line next to Rodger and was in the semi-erect bucket. His jockstrap strained just enough that Rodger could see the base of his thick shaft and part of his scrotum. He felt a sudden jolt — guilt, he figured, for peeping at his friend.
The guys with boners were not in the worst position, however. A few of the pledges had changed before bed, putting on clean underwear or pajama bottoms. Others looked like they had thrown on clothes before running out, either forgetting the rule in their haze or thinking it had been a joke.
“You, you, you, you, and you,” called Kyle, no longer using his megaphone. “CUT. That’s five! Five from Advisory Hall alone. Three from Pitman, two from Lawrence. You’ve lost ten pledges from your ranks this morning. That’s the most I’ve seen in four years. Do you guys actually want to join this frat?”
“YES BROTHER,” chanted the pledges.
“Are you willing to do whatever it takes? Even if it means some fat schmuck telling you to walk around in your panties?”
“And are you willing to accept your punishment for your pledge class’ disloyalty?”
“YES BROTHER” — this one with less resolve.
“I have recruited the band here to teach you how to march. One cohesive unit, moving in unison. That’s brotherhood. You’re going to do three laps around campus with the band as they play through their repertoire. You fall out of lockstep more than once, consider yourself cut.”
A few members of the band came out amongst the pledges, explaining to them how they were going to line up. The guys gathered behind the band in the street, forming rows of five. Rodger was able to get in a row with all of his hallmates. Their fifth man was Zach, a skinny Taiwanese guy from Santa Cruz in weed-leaf covered boxer briefs.
The drum major began counting out the beat, explaining the leg movements and step patterns. It was basic marching in a straight line, but for the hungover pledges, may well have been a complicated ballroom dance.
Eventually, the motley crew set off to march through campus. The green-shirted brothers shuffled behind them, hooting and hollering and chugging cans of beer. It was early, but people were out and about, reading on the quad or drinking coffee at the student union. They seemed mostly annoyed and tried to ignore the marchers.
Around halfway through the first lap, as they passed the athletics complex, Zach stumbled on a landscaping stone and fell out of line. He jogged and caught back up, but they heard a brother yell from behind: “That’s one strike, Wu!”
Periodically, Rodger caught himself stealing glances at Kevan’s crotch. He told himself he should warn his friend if he exposed himself on accident again. But Kevan hadn’t gotten aroused again since the morning. He was disappointed — relieved, rather, that Kevan wasn’t going to flash any more than he already had.
They were close to finishing the first lap, and only Zach had fallen out of line. As they crested University Hill to go through the main gates and begin their second round, Rodger noticed that a small crowd had gathered where there had been nobody before.
“The cheerleading team?” Zach asked.
Kevan stuck his head up over the crowd and nodded. “Cheerleading team.”
All along the path on the main quad were women from various sports teams, sororities, and other organizations friendly with SPH. The sisters of ENM were there, of course, decked in their pink and black rush shirts. The three other major sororities on campus were all cheering at the boys as well. While marching past KD, one of their sisters called out Rodger’s name — he made eye contact and gulped, recognizing her.
He stood still for a moment in his embarrassment, causing the guy marching behind him to trip up as well. “Higgins, Carlisle, one each!”
“Fuck off, Rodger,” hissed Matty Carlisle.
“Sorry,” he called back apologetically.
The KD sister was a sophomore Rodger had almost hooked up with at party on the second night of college. She was the sexiest girl Rodger had ever seen in real life — way hotter than the twins from high school — with long, chocolate-brown hair and perfect, firm tits. But he hadn’t been able to get it up. They blamed whiskey dick — he’d drank more that night than ever before in his life — but never even took their underwear off.
She’d been cool about it, but he’d been kicking himself ever since.
“Who was that?” Tony asked suggestively.
“The sexy KD girl Rodger hooked up with first week,” Kevan answered.
Lance smirked. “Must have been a wild five minutes. We share a wall, remember?”
“I didn’t say it,” was all Rodger shot back.
After the main quad, the rest of campus remained relatively empty. But it was getting closer to noon now, and people were starting to wake up and head out for greasy breakfast food in the commons. It also meant that the sun was higher in the sky, beating down on the mostly naked pledges. Rodger could feel himself getting sunburned — and could watch Tony get sunburned in near real-time, pale as he was.
By the third lap, the girls had recruited more students — and some passing staff and faculty — to their crowd. The swim team was giving out free coffee to attract viewers. Of course, everyone in this crowd had their phone out — no doubt this would be all over YouTube and TikTok.
The procession had almost made it to the other end of the quad when an errant corgi, leashed by a member of the softball team, lunged partway into the path. Its owner pulled the dog back before it really did anything, but it was enough to startle Zach, on the far-left side of the row. He flinched and fell out of rhythm.
“Wu!” called out one of the brothers through the megaphone. “Everyone, HALT!”
The band stopped playing and the marchers came to a standstill. Two brothers, followed quickly by Kyle, stormed over to our row. “We were generous. We gave you one slip up. But two means you’re cut.”
Zach slumped, clearly devastated. Noticing this, Kyle chimes in. “I think we can offer a penalty option. You can take the penalty and continue rushing, or you can go home.”
“Thank you, brother,” Zach said softly.
Kyle and the other two brothers stepped aside to confer for a few moments. Zach turned to look at Rodger, a sort of sad, resigned look in his eye. He looked how Rodger felt deep down — desperate for this.
The trio walked back over. Kyle cleared his throat and called out, “We have conferred and decided on a penalty. If Zach Wu surrenders his underwear to us, he can stay in the march. Or, he can keep his boxers and go home. The choice is his.”
Rodger felt his heart begin to race. Surely they couldn’t make Zach march through campus butt naked? At the same time, this was a rite of passage. You had to go through the humiliation to get to the reward. The shame and exhibition were just collateral.
Zach turned to Rodger. “What do you think? Would you do it?”
“I…” Rodger said, “I think it’s worth it, man. What’s another naked frat boy? No one cares.”
He heard Kevan let out a small, disapproving scoff. Rodger grimaced, wondering if he had counseled Zach poorly. But in any case, it seemed to strengthen Zach’s resolve, and in a fell swoop he ripped off his boxer briefs.
“Just rip off the band-aid,” said Zach, as if to himself.
Zach’s dick wasn’t big — maybe an inch and half soft, not very thick, and shriveled further from the autumn air. He was uncut and unshaven, pin-straight pubes exploding from the base of his shaft. One of the brothers chuckled — “That’s an omega dick if I’ve ever seen one.” Rodger didn’t understand what that meant.
By now, a larger crowd of girls had gathered around to watch, including most of the contingent from ENM. Their pledges and sisters were laughing the loudest, pointing their phones at Zach and holding up their pinky fingers. A few of the guys started chucking too, including Lance and Matty Carlisle.
“That’s enough,” called Kyle. “Let’s keep marching.”
The band started up again and the procession left the quad. The rest of the trip wasn’t so bad; there were more passersby than before, but in general nothing scandalous. Rodger couldn’t help but stare at Zach’s dick, jiggling about as he marched. It was a good-looking dick — from an objective standpoint — smooth and clean and nicely shaped. Rodger felt his own cock start to quiver, and hunched over a bit to disguise a quickly-growing half-chub. He was once again grateful to be in boxer shorts. All the adrenaline and moving around today was getting him excited.
As the clock hit 2 p.m., the boys completed their third lap. The band peeled off, and instead of circling back to the quad, the pledges continued down the hill to Greek Row. At the SPH house, the rest of the brothers were waiting in the yard with a dozen kegs and twice as many bottles of liquor. The pledges poured into the yard, sun-kissed and exhausted, and were immediately dogpiled by the brothers and greeted with hearty cheers.
As the exuberance died down, and the drinking began, Kyle made his way back to the front of the crowd. The din subsided and he announced, “Gentleman, today has been all about loyalty. That’s the third pillar of SPH. When your brother needs you — on the battlefield, in the marketplace — you help him.”
Lance leaned in to Rodger and whispered in his ear, “This guy has really drunk the Kool-Aid, huh?”
Rodger just shrugged, focusing his attention back on Kyle: “Even if it means running around in your undies for a whole day — you do as your brother asks.” There was a round of applause. Lance cast a knowing look at Rodger, who frowned. He knew it was just all hyperbole to get everyone hyped up for pledging. Grains of salt all around.
“That being said,” Kyle continued. “The final task to prove your loyalty is next. This morning, all us brothers drew random pledges’ names from a hat. The brother who drew your name is going to assign you a Task. Those who do not complete their Tasks satisfactorily will be cut. The Task can be anything, as long as it doesn’t put anyone in harm’s way. You’ll have from the end of the darty until midnight to complete your task. But, until then, drink and celebrate! You’re almost there, boys. Oh, and get dressed.”
More brothers came out from inside carrying the cloth laundry bags. The pledges mobbed the bags looking for their clothes and shoes. Rodger spotted Lance’s Balenciagas and tossed them over to him; Tony passed Rodger his blue gingham shirt. In time, the lads were all dressed again, and mixing with the brothers, doing keg stands, and taking shots. The brothers were really plying the pledges with alcohol, more so than at the first mixer. As the afternoon went on, the brothers would approach the pledge whose name they drew and hand them a small, green envelope with their Task.
For his part, Rodger was feeling euphoric — he’d made it so far, survived the public humiliation, and was that much closer to his dream. He was chasing down Kevan, trying to gather his boys for a round of shots, when a man in a green shirt intercepted him.
It was Oliver, his brother’s friend. “Hey, Rodge. Believe it or not, I got your name this morning.”
Rodger’s heart skipped a beat. He hadn’t really noticed Oliver before, too anxious the night before to pay much attention to anything in particular. But he was a compact guy, short and kind of buff — tan skin, light brown hair, a boyish smile — Rodger then noticed the little green card being presented to him.
“I actually texted your brother to ask for suggestions,” Oliver told him, “and he gave me a pretty interesting idea.”
Rodger gingerly took the envelope, looking at it blankly. “Uh — cool. Thanks, I guess.”
Oliver chuckled. “Just meet me back inside after the darty.” He walked away, leaving a befuddled Rodger in search of his friends and a bottle of rum.
By the time he’d gathered everyone, each boy had gotten his card. “Okay, do we open them?” Lance asked.
“I’ve lowkey already opened mine,” Tony confessed.
“What is it?”
“Well, tell me yours first.”
Rodger let out a small huff. “Okay, the rest of us open on the count of three, then we all say it. One, two, three.”
There was a brief pause as everyone opened their envelopes and took in the challenge being presented to them.
“Alright,” said Tony, “Mine is to make a dessert from scratch and bring it to my brother before midnight.”
“Seriously? That’s it?” balked Kevan. “Mine is to ‘accidentally’ post a dick pic on my Story and leave it up for 10 minutes!”
Lance let out a low whistle. “Jesus. That sucks. Mine is to build a popsicle stick bridge that can support a 15-pound weight.”
“Yours must be an engineering major,” mused Tony.
“Rodge,” asked Kevan, “what’s yours?”
Rodger was looking at his card in disbelief, wondering if it was a joke or a mistake. “Mine just says, ‘Give me a bath.'”
“Holy shit,” said Lance. “These really run the gamut, huh?”
“Okay, but Rodger’s is definitely the weirdest,” Kevan frowned.
“I’m sure it’s just a troll. I’ll get there and it’ll be something dumb,” was all Rodger could think to say. Truthfully, his mind hadn’t stopped spinning since reading his Task. He was supposed to bathe Oliver, and it was his own brother’s idea? Why did Aaron think this would be a good Task for him? Rodger felt butterflies begin to flutter.
The boys downed two shots of rum each and continued to partake. They played beer pong with some brothers, chatted with the other pledges, and drank plenty more rum. The darty went on for longer than anyone anticipated. Around 8 p.m., the brothers shut everything down — the pledges now had four hours now to complete their tasks. Most of the boys scrambled out of the yard, off to complete various challenges. Rodger had heard some of the other Tasks: skinny dip in the fountain in the main quad; find an entrance to one of the school’s old underground tunnels; hook up with someone and bring proof.
Lance and Tony went to head to the market to get supplies for their tasks; Kevan set about to find the most strategic time to post his nudes on main. Rodger waited until almost everyone had left, and crept into the frat house.
Rodger knew there were no bathrooms with bathtubs on the ground floor, so he headed upstairs. Sure enough, there was a single light shining through a door in the hallway. Rodger heard running water.
The bathroom hadn’t been updated since the 70s — avocado green fixtures and checkered tile to match. Oliver sat on the rim of the tub, wrapped in just a towel. Rodger stepped into the bathroom and shut the door.
“What is this about, man?” Rodger asked. “Are you and Aaron pranking me or something?”
Oliver gave a gentle smile. “No, Rodger — your brother thought this would be good for you. I guess he’s had a hunch you might have some… feelings about boys… and this is a chance for you to explore it safely. I’m gonna get in the tub, you’re gonna get to know my body and decide if you want to fuck it or not.”
Rodger had been preparing to protest, but was taken aback by Oliver’s matter-of-fatness. “Are you gay?” was all he could think to say.
“I’m whatever,” Oliver shrugged, rising from his perch. With a wiggle of his eyebrow, he unwrapped his towel from around his waist. His rich olive skin was the same golden tan all over his body, save for a thin bikini line. His manhood was impressive — cut, just about four inches soft, but massive in girth — his whole body untrimmed, including a wild bush surrounding his meaty cock. His compact stature made his dick look even bigger in comparison; he had the overall impression of a sexy caveman.
Oliver settled into the bath and Rodger knelt next to the tub. He grabbed a large sponge from the rim and squirted some body wash on it. Timidly, he moved to wash Oliver’s firm chest, matted in fine tawny strands. He was conscious, as he moved the sponge in tight circles, that the center of pressure was being exerted over his nipples. Oliver couldn’t help but let out a light sigh of pleasure.
Rodger went through the motions of washing Oliver’s arms and armpits, legs and feet, before returning to what he really wanted to scrub. Starting slowly over his belly, Rodger closed his eyes and thought about Zach Wu’s tiny exposed dick, the tiny glimpse of Kevan’s ballsack as his boner peeled back his jock. Aaron had been right after all — Rodger did like cocks. He wasn’t ready to admit it to the world, but he was willing to admit it to Oliver.
He dragged the sudsy sponge down into Oliver’s crotch, patting coyly at his dick and balls. When he pulled away for a moment, he noticed the cock had grown even larger. Now six inches and thicker still, his cock stuck slightly above the water.
Rodger was hypnotized. “Oliver,” he asked, “is it okay if I stroke it?”
Oliver nodded. Gingerly, Rodger grabbed the big shaft and started sliding his hand up and down. The fingertips of his large hands barely touched around the girth of the cock. Fully erect, he was easily seven inches. It was unlike anything Rodger had ever seen. He felt the low pulses in Oliver’s cock as it reacted in pleasure, growing to full mast and dribbling precum.
“Do you want to suck it?” Oliver asked.
Rodger nodded as Oliver stood up, water and suds dripping off him. His raging boner was pointed straight at Rodger’s mouth, which hesitantly opened. Rodger licked the head of Oliver’s cock, then moved on to his shaft, and his low-hanging balls. He smelled like rosewater from the bath, and tasted salty, like seaside air. Rodger took Oliver’s dick into his mouth, slowly swallowing him deeper and deeper until he was gliding along Oliver’s impressive length. As Rodger got into the rhythm, greedily taking in Oliver’s dick, his whole body began to react in pleasure. He felt a tingling in his spine, and an urge deep in his guts. Rodger was close to asking Oliver to fuck him — he was becoming insatiable.
But just then, Oliver announced that he was going to cum — he pulled out and jizzed thick ropes of cum on Rodger’s face. His semen got into Rodger’s hair and eyebrows, and a good bit into his mouth. Rodger was surprised to find he didn’t mind the taste.
“You are a natural cocksucker,” Oliver said fondly, settling back in the tub.
Rodger was grabbing toilet paper to wipe the cum off his face. “And nobody hears about this?”
“I promise,” Oliver affirmed.
The guys who had finished their Tasks were back mingling in the yard. There was a keg or two left, and Rodger was sipping on warm beer with Zach Wu and Damon, the redhead.
“My task to was bring my brother an eighth of weed. I already had it on me,” Zach was telling them.
“That’s so lucky,” said Damon. “Mine was to livestream myself jerking off until I came. So I just made a random throwaway account and streamed to no one. But I was so nervous it took me like, 45 minutes to finish. No one viewed… but it was still kind of a thrill.”
That had reminded Rodger of Kevan’s Task. He pulled out his phone to check his friends’ stories — nothing from Kev. A few minutes later, Lance returned to the yard with his popsicle stick bridge. “It holds no more than 16 pounds,” he told us, “but it passes.”
“Well done,” said Rodger.
“How was bath time?”
Rodger shrugged. “Just the guy being goofy. It was fine.”
It was getting close to 11 p.m., and only about a quarter of the pledges had returned. Rodger was relieved to see Tony get back at around a quarter past. “Cannoli were not the smartest choice on a time crunch, but they were a big hit.”
“Nice, man,” Rodger said. “I hope Kevan’s okay.” He pulled out his phone again and refreshed the stories. There it was — the little ring around Kevan’s picture. Rodger tapped it and was greeted with a black screen that read “Story deleted.” He had just missed it.
As midnight approached, Kevan returned, along with many of the other pledges. A lot of them seemed distressed — word through the grapevine sounded like a lot of the guys had failed their Tasks. Kevan, however, was over the moon: “Zero views! I timed it perfectly. It was when everyone was mid-party, post-pregame and pre-hookup. No one looking at their phones.”
It seemed like most of the pledges had returned, and a lot of the brothers were filtering back into the yard as well. When the clock hit midnight, one of Kyle’s subordinates announced the boys who hadn’t made the cut. They had either failed their Tasks or done such a poor job as to be disqualified. After the culling, a scant two score remained.
Kyle took over from his deputy. “All, it’s time we told you that there are 24 spots open this year. The next round of cuts will be the final one. 15 of you will be cut, and the rest will be admitted as brothers.”
A curt round of applause. Everyone was exhausted from the march and their Tasks. Even the brothers were weary from a long day of heavy drinking. Rodger took another sip of his beer.
Kyle continued, “We’ve focused on your charisma, your strength, and your loyalty. But you need to be strong of spirit as well. At SPH, we work hard and play hard. We can’t have our men making any party fouls, especially not in front of girls. So, this last task is simple. You are all going to keep drinking. Our brothers will make sure everyone is taking in their fair share. The first 15 pledges to puke, pass out, or otherwise lose control of themselves — cut.”
Rodger’s stomach dropped. He’d partied some in high school, but was never a huge drinker. He knew guys like Lance had been binge drinking for years already. Rodger was suddenly at a disadvantage. All the same, he just kept telling himself to keep it together for one night.
One of the brothers, a short, boyish baseball player named Quinn, walked over to Rodger and his friends with a handle of Captain Morgan. “Boys, I’ve heard you like rum,” he greeted with a grin.
“That we do,” Tony replied enthusiastically.
“I thought we could play my favorite game,” said Quinn. “And get through this bottle together.”
The lads exchanged glances with each other. At the end of the day, they knew they didn’t really have a choice. Quinn hadn’t been the most involved with rush so far, so they didn’t have a good read on him yet. Finally, Lance just said, “Sure.”
Quinn motioned for the boys to join him around the cracked plastic table nearby. He placed a red cup in front of every guy, and an empty beer bottle in the middle. “The rules are simple,” he explained. “Before every round, we all take a shot. Then, we spin the bottle and play truth or dare.” He uncapped the bottle of rum and poured a few generous glugs into each cup. “By the way, I’m really good at telling when people are lying. Bottoms up!”
Rodger tried to shoot as much of the rum down his throat as he could without tasting it. It worked; the first shot was not so bad. He looked around and saw that the brothers had pulled all the pledges into small groups to play drinking games.
Quinn reached into the middle of the table and gave the bottle its inaugural spin. After what felt like ten full minutes, the bottle finally settled on Lance.
“Truth,” chose Lance.
“Okay,” said Quinn, “how long did you last the first time you had sex?”
Lance turned red. “I don’t know, like 30 minutes?”
“I can tell you’re lying.”
“2 minutes, barely. But I was like 15 and had no refractory period, so the second round was longer.”
“… 5 minutes.”
Quinn grinned. “Alright man, good on you. Honesty is a big part of loyalty. And bravery is part of strength. That’s what makes Truth or Dare such a good rush game… as long as you all play fair.”
Quinn poured them all another round of generous shots, and it was Lance’s turn to spin the bottle. It landed on Tony, who chose dare.
“Alright, Tone,” said Lance. “I dare you to text the last girl you fucked asking for a performance review.”
Tony chuckled and pulled out his phone. Last weekend, he’d made it with Myra, a petit brunette girl who couldn’t stop laughing at his jokes. He sent her a message asking her to rate his fucking, to which she replied a few minutes later, “8/10.”
Kevan and Rodger whooped. “Way to go, Tone!”
“I gotta say I’m surprised,” said Lance. “But good for you.”
The group played many more rounds, drinking bigger and bigger shots as they went. Tony asked Kevan if he’d ever done coke (“No”), Kevan dared Rodger to do 10 pushups, Rodger asked Lance his ACT score (24), Lance dared Quinn to sing the school fight song, and on they went.
They had finished the bottle of rum, and Quinn was pouring a hodgepodge shot from the bottom of a few leftover liquor bottles. “Guess this is the last round,” he said with a belch.
At that point in the evening, the first five boys had already been eliminated. All of them threw up after forcing down a shot they weren’t ready for. But as a group, the pledges were now extremely drunk. For his part, Rodger was not feeling as off-kilter as he had feared, but he was definitely smashed. He knew all he had to do was stay awake and stay the course, but he also knew it would only get harder as the night went on. They were quickly approaching sunrise.
Quinn gave the bottle one last hearty spin, and it landed dead straight on Rodger. “Okay, Rodge,” said Quinn, “truth or dare?”
“Truth,” said Rodger.
“Alright,” Quinn thought for a moment. “Let’s go out with a bang. Tell us about your sexiest lay. In detail. Make us feel like we were there.”
Rodger’s pulse quickened. In truth… he had never fucked a girl before. He’d had girlfriends in high school, and gone home with girls at parties, but never quite made it to sealing the deal. The twins and his previous girlfriends hadn’t wanted to at all; he had started to get a handjob from Pauline Wyatt at a party his junior year, but someone started banging on the bathroom door because they had to shit. At university, he’d been more interested in partying with his boys, and the one time he’d gone home with a girl in college — well, it was with the sorority girl who he couldn’t get it up for.
But then, he realized, he’d had the closest thing to a real sexual encounter with Oliver just hours earlier. He told the boys that story, obscuring some details and the timeframe — it was a girl who had coyly invited him up to the bath, and made him clean every inch of her body, then had him eat her out while he stayed kneeling.
“And she squirted all over my face,” he finished.
“But you didn’t get to smash?” pressed Lance.
Rodger shrugged. “It was hot. I didn’t need to.”
“Shut the fuck up, Kennedy,” snapped Quinn with a grin, “that’s a real man who knows how to put a woman’s pleasure above his own. And for longer than 5 minutes.” Lance scowled.
One of the other brothers had walked up to the Truth or Dare group. “Four more down,” he told Quinn. “Two pukers and two passed out in the lawn chairs.”
Rodger looked over, and sure enough, Damon the redhead and a boy Rodger didn’t recognize were fast asleep on the patio.
“More than halfway there,” Quinn grinned. “Anyway, Higgins here got me all hot and bothered talking about his exploits. I’m gonna see if Twyla’s still up and down to hit. Want to take over my group?”
Suddenly, Tony gagged and doubled over. He ran over the big, metal trash can — and stood still over it as the rest of us watched in horror. Rodger walked over slowly and placed his hand gently on Tony’s back.
“You’ve gotta pull it together, man,” he said encouragingly. “We’re so close. Deep breaths.”
Tony pulled in a few shaky gasps, then shook himself out and turned back to Rodger. “Thanks, man. I think it’s passed.”
Two more boys had walked out, finally reaching a breaking point and deciding it wasn’t worth it. Cesar Velasquez, an early favorite to make it all the way, sat down under a tree for a break and immediately fell asleep.
Lance was swaying where he stood; Kevan seemed steady but with a glassy look in his eye. Tony was still nauseas, and Rodger just felt unbearably tired more than anything. The frat had by that point run out of alcohol, so it was now just a matter of time.
A few yards away, a tall guy with an afro puked all over the ground. The pledge closest to him, seeing and smelling it, lost his lunch seconds after. In an instant, there was only one cut left to make. One more reject, and everyone else would become members of SPH. Rodger kept repeating how close he was to himself, like a mantra. Just don’t throw up and don’t pass out.
The remaining 25 boys had slowly, organically formed a large circle in the middle of the yard. Everyone looked haggard, but it was hard to deny that the remaining pledges all the markings of true SPH men. Athletic, determined, masculine. Even in near-delirium from sleep deprivation and drunkenness, they cut a hale figure as the sun crested over the horizon.
“So, who’s going to take the L so we can all just go home?” Lance asked, breaking the silence.
Everett Kelly, a hulking rugby star with curly hair down to his shoulders, glowered. “Not a chance, pretty boy.”
“Now that we’re out of booze, it’s going to be a long haul,” observed Callum, a slender computer science major known for his liver of steel.
Just then, there was a flurry of noise as Kyle flung open the back door and reappeared in the yard. “Good news, fellas!” he cried. “I found an old bottle of Everclear in my closet.”
A few of the boys audibly groaned. Kyle explained that there was enough left for one shot each, but the potent high-proof Everclear would certainly send someone over the edge. Rodger had never had Everclear before, but he could smell it already as the first shots were being poured a few pledges away from him.
Eventually, one of the brothers came to Rodger and filled his cup with a trickle of Everclear. Rodger had grown used to seeing Quinn’s shots, so seeing just an ounce and a half in his cup provided some reassurance. The acrid smell of pure alcohol was singeing the inside of his nose.
“Alright boys — raise your cups,” Kyle called out. “A toast to you fine men for making it this far. Let’s see who’ll make the final cut. Now drink!”
In unison, the pledges tossed back their shots. Rodger felt a wave of dizziness and queasiness wash over him, and felt unsteady on his feet for a few beats. He felt his eyelids grow heavy and fought to keep them from slamming shut.
But Rodger didn’t have to fight for long. Gideon, the largest remaining pledge, was doubled over at the base of tree, emptying his guts. He straightened himself and faced the crowd, a look of shame and disappointment on his face. “Well, it’s been real, guys,” he said, and walked out of the yard dejectedly.
The brothers who hadn’t gone to bed yet gave a half-hearted round of applause. It was now a bright and sunny Sunday morning, and the lads did not have it in them to celebrate. It hadn’t even really dawned on Rodger yet — he made it. He was going to officially be a brother of Sigma Rho Eta. The Higgins family legacy would continue — his dad and Aaron were going to be thrilled.
“Alright, boys,” Kyle told the group, his voice gentler and kinder than it had been all weekend. “Go home, take a shower, and get some rest. Be back here at midnight for the induction ceremony. You should all be very proud.”
To Be Continued…?
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