Arctos: Cable (Part 1)

A shorter something based off a caption I did for a pic over in the bear TF discord channel.

I knew something was up when I came home to the sound of the TV on.  Jared, my roommate in the apartment we shared, almost never watched TV–he spent almost all of his time holed up in his room, either reading or studying for classes. We were both fairly nerdy guys: quiet and reserved, and we’d always gotten along well, which is why we’d moved in together. Listening, it sounded like the TV was tuned to a sports channel, which was even stranger. I went inside, dropped my bag–and that’s when I saw him.

Jared–he wasn’t the Jared I remembered. He was on the couch in a pair of mesh shorts, jaw dropped, a bit of drool in the goatee he had somehow grown in the course of a day…but it was the belly that had sprouted which I found the most concerning. “Jared?” I asked, and he didn’t seem to hear me, “Jared!”

With a start, he looked over at me, eyes a bit dull…and I saw the empty beer cans scattered over the side table. “Hey roomie! What’s up? Some Arctos cable guy came by today, said we gots a free upgrade on the box. Picture’s fuckin’ great now! Sit down, let’s watch a bit.”

I didn’t know what to say–did he not see what had happened to him? I tried to point out how different he was, but he didn’t seem interested in listening–and before I could get him to pay attention, he was focused back in on the TV screen. Unnerved, I retreated to my room, keeping my eyes averted from the TV, and shut myself inside my room. Was I just imagining things? Jared certainly hadn’t seemed to notice anything wrong at all–and the more I thought about it, the harder time I was having trying to remember what, exactly, Jared had looked like earlier that morning. After all, hadn’t I left him right there, like usual, watching TV? He was always watching TV, wasn’t he?

I did my best to focus on my school work, but I swear Jared kept turning the volume on the TV up as the evening wore on. I went out to get some food and asked him to keep it down a bit, but he didn’t pay me any attention and just kept chugging the beer he had in his hand. “Whatever, bro,” he said to me, and let off a huge belch. I retreated back to my room, still keeping my eyes away from the TV as best I could. Once it came time to get to bed, however, I could hear the TV–and Jared snoring–through the walls of the apartment. I was going to have to go out there and turn it off at least so I could get some rest.

I crept out into the living room, and there Jared was, snoring away, his big hairy gut hanging out, cap on backwards, passed out drunk. What a fucking lout, I thought–what was I doing sharing an apartment with a fat, lazy pig like this anyway? I started digging around for the remote and eventually found it wedged under Jared’s ass, pointed it at the TV and tried to turn it off–but I must have hit the wrong button, because instead of turning off, the channel changed to something else. It wasn’t a show that I recognized at all, but at first look it seemed to be a reality show of some sort focused around a chop shop–a bunch of grungy looking mechanics covered in grease talking about the cars and motorcycles they were fixing and modding at the moment–however, it was the guy on the screen that caught my attention. He was speaking in a deep southern drawl, and this big, thick beard, and looked to be close to 400 pounds–just massive, and all of it packed into the grubby coveralls he was wearing.

After staring at the screen for a couple of minutes, I found myself becoming more interested in the content too–I decided to have a seat on the couch and at least finish the episode out. Then, when that one was finished, I discovered it was a marathon of the show…and I couldn’t very well watch just one episode, right? My hand found its way down to the side of the couch, where it fished up a can of beer–I popped it open and took a long swig, while my free hand started rubbing the crotch of my shorts, thinking about how sexy it would be to work somewhere like that–the smell of grease, the musk of my fellow mechanics, working with my hands. Still, I was starting to get tired, and while I tried to fight it as best I could, the beers were only making things worse. The last thing I remember is lying my head over onto Jared’s shoulder, and then I was out.

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