Chapter 19

Blake walked over and hugged me tightly. He pulled away, looked around the bedroom and tearfully said, “I can’t believe your aunt and uncle are going to let me stay with them.”

“You can’t let them down,” I replied.

He promised, “I won’t. It’s like I’ve been given another chance. I’m not going to mess it up.”

“You better not,” I replied as I leaned in and kissed him.

Blake pulled away and looked sadly at me. “What about you?” Tears welled up in his eyes. “What’s going to happen to you?”

“I don’t know,” I sighed as I walked over and sat on the edge of the bed. Blake sat down closely beside me. “I guess I’ll find out in a little while when Mr. Ellis returns.”

Blake gripped my hand and squeezed it. “Do you want me to go with you?”

“No,” I responded. “This is something I have to do alone.” Tears appeared in my eyes. “I guess I can always come here to stay.”

Blake smiled and replied, “That would be kind of cool.”

I rose and started pacing around the room. “I wonder what’s happening with Craig?”

“Can you call him?” asked Blake. I pulled my phone out of my pocket. I had forgotten to turn it on. When I did, I noticed several messages. None were from Craig. Four were from Stacy. I knew that they were probably threats, so I deleted them without even reading them. Ty had also left a message, and there were two from Roni. Ty said he heard what happened, and he wanted to know if I was okay and to give him a call. Roni wanted to know where we were. She said she had called Craig a dozen times and he wasn’t answering.

“Is everything okay?” asked Blake when I closed my phone.

“Yeah,” I responded. “People want to know if I’m okay.” I sat back down beside him. I yawned and said, “I’m kind of tired. Let’s lay down for a minute before dinner.”

I didn’t have to say anything more. Blake toed off his shoes, removed his shirt and lay down. He watched as I did the same. He turned onto his side, and I put my arm around him and snuggled into his body.

He purred, “This is nice.”

“It is,” I replied as I pulled him tighter to me. “I wish life wasn’t so complicated, and we could do this without all the bullshit we have to go through.”

He responded sadly, “Maybe someday.”

I asked, “Do you think we’ll ever be happy?”

He rolled over and faced me with tears in his eyes. “I don’t know, Seth,” he replied. “I almost gave up on being happy.” He leaned forward, kissed me and said, “Until I met you.”

I grinned and asked, “What about Craig?”

“Oh, yeah,” he smiled. “Him too.”

“It’s crazy,” I replied, “I can’t believe what we did this morning. Do you regret it?”

He shook his head and asked, “Do you?”

“No,” I said. “I thought it was kind of special that the three of us made love like that.”

“I felt the same way,” he said.

I rolled over on my back and stared at the ceiling. “All my life I thought I wanted a boyfriend. But today I felt different. I felt like I could love two guys at the same time.”

“I thought the same thing,” replied Blake. “It’s like I love you both equally.”

I turned and stared into his eyes. “So, you don’t think it’s wrong?”

“No,” he smiled. “As long as you’re okay with it.” I leaned over and kissed him.

“I am,” I said. Blake rolled onto his side, and I snuggled into his warm body. I wanted to make love, but I was too tired. Blake gripped my arm, and soon we were both sound asleep.

We were awakened an hour later with someone tapping on the door. I put on my shirt and walked over and opened it. It was Uncle Steve. He walked in, looked at Blake still lying in bed and asked, “Did you boys get some sleep?”

Blake sat up and replied, “Yes, Uncle Steve.”

He walked over and pushed on the mattress. “Is the bed comfortable? It’s been on this bed since Charles was a little boy. It may be time for a new one.”

“It’s fine,” Blake assured him.

“Good,” said Uncle Steve. “Marie sent me up to tell you boys that dinner is ready.” His smile turned to a frown. “Mr. Ellis is downstairs. He’s back from his meeting with Craig’s parents.”

“Is Craig okay?” I asked worriedly.

“He didn’t say,” replied Uncle Steve. “He’s joining us for dinner, so I guess we’ll find out soon enough.” He patted me on my shoulder. “Now, wash your hands and come down for dinner.” He started to laugh. “It’s hard to say where your hands have been.”

“Uncle Steve!” I squealed. “You’re dirty old man!” He laughed louder as he left the room.

Blake giggled and said, “I’m going to like staying here. Uncle Steve is funny.”

“Wait until he puts shaving cream on your hand and then wakes you up,” I laughed.

Blake gave me a puzzled look and asked, “What’s that mean?”

“You’ll find out,” I laughed. “We better get downstairs.” We headed out the door and walked across the hall to the bathroom. After watching each other relieve ourselves, we washed our hands and headed downstairs. The adults were sitting talking quietly when we entered the dining room.

Aunt Marie looked up, smiled, and told us to have a seat across from Mr. Ellis. I sat down nervously and looked over at him. I asked, “Is Craig alright?” Aunt Marie suggested that we eat first, and then we could discuss Craig’s situation after dinner. I ate very little because I was worried about what had happened to him. Blake, however, ate like it was his last meal.

When we finished, Blake and I cleaned the table and put the dirty dishes in the dishwasher while the adults went into the family room to talk. I tried to hear what they were saying, but they were talking very softly so we couldn’t listen. When we finished, we went into the room and sat together on a loveseat.

Mr. Ellis smiled slightly, cleared his throat and said, “First, Boys, Craig is okay.” I let out a breath of air that I had been holding since sitting down. “I don’t want to go into too much detail because it is a private matter between Craig and his parents. If he wants to talk about it later, then he has every right to do so.”

Tears welled up in my eyes, “Is he getting kicked out of his house?”

“No,” replied Mr. Ellis. “Let’s just say his parents were very upset with what has happened, but they aren’t going to do anything rash like putting him out of his house.”

“He’s lucky,” muttered Blake.

I asked, “Are we going to be able to see him again?”

“That wasn’t discussed,” he replied. “But since you go to the same school, I don’t see why you wouldn’t.”

“Does Craig want to see us again?”

Mr. Ellis grinned and replied, “I don’t think you have anything to worry about. All the way to his house, he talked about how much you guys meant to him. I don’t think an army could stop him from seeing you guys.” He looked at Blake and asked, “Are you going to be happy with the arrangement of living here?”

“Yes, Sir,” responded Blake excitedly. “I promised Uncle Steve I’m not going to give them any problems.” He looked at Uncle Steve and smiled.

“That’s wonderful,” replied Mr. Ellis. “I’ve already made a few phone calls. When I get to my office in the morning, I’ll get the paperwork started. If your parents agree, then it should only take a day or two to finalize everything.” I took Blake’s hand and squeezed it tightly. I wasn’t sure what would happen to me, but I was glad that things would be better for him.

Mr. Ellis looked worriedly at me. “Well, Seth?” he asked, “Are you ready now?”

Blake squeezed my hand so tightly, it hurt. Tears welled up in my eyes, and I nodded my head. “I think so, Sir.” He rose and shook my aunt and uncle’s hand. He then turned to me and asked if I was ready. I gave Blake a tight embrace. I wanted to kiss him, but I remembered what Uncle Steve had said earlier. I walked over and hugged Aunt Marie and Uncle Steve. Both had tears in their eyes. I then headed out the door and followed Mr. Ellis to his car.

In a few minutes, I would learn my fate.

Mr. Ellis tried to prepare me for what to expect. He said each case is different, but most parents react the same way. They are first surprised and shocked to find out their child is gay. However, over time, most parents begin to accept it.

“What about Blake?” I asked. “His parents kicked him out of the house.” I was wondering if my mother would do the same to me. At least I knew that I could go stay with Aunt Marie and Uncle Steven if she did.

Mr. Ellis replied, “It’s not unusual, but it does happen. That is why my organization exists. We try to help keep young people off the street and provide them with safe places to stay. Your aunt and uncle are remarkable people for taking Blake in. He’s going to get a lot of support he hasn’t had in years.”

“I know,” I replied as tears filled my eyes. “I’m happy for him.” Mr. Ellis looked at me and smiled.

Soon, we pulled up in front of my house. My hands were shaking so bad that I had to press them against my legs. My breathing became more rapid, and I felt weak. I had no idea what would happen when I entered the house. I would have given anything to turn the clock back twenty-four hours. However, life isn’t that simple. I had made a big mistake, and now I had to face the consequences- whatever they may be.

I stood behind Mr. Ellis as he knocked on the door. My mother sounded very upset when he introduced himself to her. I held my head down as I entered. Suddenly, we were standing face to face. Before I realized what was happening, she slapped me across the face.

She screamed, “What the hell is wrong with you, Seth!” She pulled her hand back to slap me again, but Mr. Ellis stopped her.

“Mrs. Miller! If you put your hands on this boy one more time, I’m taking him out of here and calling the police!”

She cried as she looked disappointedly at me and asked, “Why, Seth? Why?”

She walked over to the sofa, sat down, buried her head in her hands and began crying. “I leave home for a few days, and I come back to this mess.” She looked up sadly and said, “My son is gay, and he’s having sex with my daughter’s boyfriend.” Tears streamed down her face as she asked again, “Why, Seth? Why?”

What could I say? Mr. Ellis put his hand on my back and patted it. He pointed to an armchair off to the side and told me to sit in it. He then sat down beside my mother. He said soothingly, “Mrs. Miller, we have to talk about this. I know you are hurting, but…” He looked over at me. “Seth is hurting also.”

She looked at me angrily and snarled, “He should be!” She asked, “How long has this been going on?”

Mr. Ellis interrupted and said, “It would be best if we take this one step at a time. Perhaps, we should discuss Seth’s sexual identity, and then we’ll go from there.”

“What’s to discuss?” snapped my mother as she looked at me with hate in her eyes. “My son is queer. He could have at least told me. He didn’t have to go behind my back and have sex with Stacy’s boyfriend. She’s so distraught right now. She’s been doing nothing but crying since it happened.” She rose and started to approach me. “And my god, Seth! You had your sister arrested!”

Mr. Ellis rose and grabbed my mother’s arm. She tried to pull it away, but he had a firm grip on it. “Sit down, Mrs. Miller,” he pleaded. “Please?” She gave me another angry look before sitting down and crying again.

Suddenly, we heard someone bounding down the stairs. I turned and saw Stacy charging across the room at me with a boot. “You Mother Fucker!” she shouted. “I’ll kill you!” She swung the boot at me, but I was able to duck. Mr. Ellis grabbed her from behind and tried to stop Stacy from attacking me.

My mother rose and started screaming at Mr. Ellis. “Get your hands off her!” I tried to pull my mother away.

“Let me at that faggot!” screamed Stacy. “I’ll kill him!”

Suddenly, the front room door opened, and Aunt Marie and Uncle Steve entered. Aunt Marie rushed over and grabbed my mother while Uncle Steve helped Mr. Ellis subdue Stacy. She kept kicking and trying to bite them. In one swift jerk, Uncle Steve pulled Stacy away and held her arms tightly as he pulled her away. We listened as Stacy called me every gay slur she could think of. Her shouting became muted, so I assumed my uncle had put his hand over her mouth to shut her up.

“Ouch! Damn, Stacy!” We heard him scream. “You bit me!” The bedroom door slammed shut, and we could hear him shouting at Stacy.

Aunt Marie was sitting beside my mother. She was crying as she said, “I knew something like this was going to happen. That’s why Steven and I rushed over here.”

My mother was inconsolable. She was crying with her head buried in her hands. Aunt Marie was trying to comfort her by rubbing her back. Mr. Ellis was pacing around the family room unsure what to do next. I think he was considering calling the police to restore the chaos that was occurring.

He finally sat beside my mother and said, “We need to talk about this Mrs. Miller. Right now, I don’t think this is a safe environment for Seth to be in.” He looked at me, and I nodded my head. Within just the past few minutes, I had been slapped by my mother and violently attacked by my twin sister. I was beginning to wonder if I could ever return home.

My mother raised her head, wiped her eyes dry with a tissue and said, “I’m okay.” She drew a long breath and continued. “I can do this. I can handle it.” She looked at me with a sad expression. “But I’m not going to like it.”

Mr. Ellis took her hand and squeezed it. “It’s not going to be easy for anyone,” he replied. “It will take time, but someday you will be able to accept your son.”

With tears running down her cheek, she replied, “I can accept that Seth is gay. I’ve suspected it for some time.” She looked over and cried, “But did it have to be with Craig?” She buried her head in her hands and began to cry again.

Mr. Ellis looked at me and nodded his head. I said, “I’m sorry, Mom. I never meant for it to happen. I never wanted to hurt you or Stacy.”

She looked up and asked, “Then why did you let it happen? Why did you seduce him? Couldn’t you have found your own boyfriend? Did you have to take Stacy’s boyfriend?”

“Mom,” I started to cry. “You’ve got this all wrong. I never forced Craig to do anything. He wanted me.” I then said the words I thought I would never say. “We love each other.”

“Oh, God!” my mother sobbed.

Mr. Ellis took my mother’s hand and squeezed it. “It’s true, Mrs. Miller. I talked to Craig and his parents earlier. Craig confessed to them that Seth didn’t force him into a relationship. He wanted it. He cares very deeply for your son.”

She raised her head and asked, “So, all this time he’s been lying to Stacy?”

Aunt Marie took her other hand and squeezed it. “It appears that way, Dear.”

My mother sat up and said adamantly, “I don’t ever want him to step foot inside this house again.” I wanted to object. However, I knew that this wasn’t the right time to do it. That argument would have to wait for another day.

Mr. Ellis said, “We need to discuss Seth’s situation. Right now, I’m not comfortable leaving him here in your care.”

My mother replied adamantly, “Seth is my son. I’ve taken care of him for sixteen years. I think I can take care of him now.”

“I’m not worried about his care,” replied Mr. Ellis. “I’m worried about his safety. What happened earlier has me concerned.”

My mother began to cry as she looked over at me. “I’m sorry I slapped you, Seth. I was just so upset over everything that happened. I came home to a mess. Stacy has been doing nothing but ranting and raving since I picked her up at the police station. I just assumed everything that happened was your fault.” She started to approach and hug me, but I backed away. I wasn’t sure how heartfelt her words were, or if she was trying to put on a good show for Mr. Ellis.

Just then, we heard Uncle Steven coming down the stairs. He looked like he had just spent ten rounds inside a boxing ring with Mike Tyson. His face was drawn, and he was breathing heavily. He also had several noticeable bloody scratches on his face.

“She’s asleep,” he sighed. “I think she’s exhausted.”

Aunt Marie rose from the sofa. “We’re going home,” she announced. “She walked over and wrapped her arm around mine. “Seth is going with us.”

“But…” replied my mother.

“Julie,” responded my aunt very adamantly. “I think it is best that Seth return to our house tonight. Emotions have gotten the best of everyone. Let’s sleep on everything that has happened. Steve and I will bring Seth back home tomorrow afternoon. We’ll all sit down and talk about it some more.”

Mr. Ellis walked over and stood beside my aunt. “I think this is a good idea,” he agreed. “If you want, I can come back with you.” He looked at me, and I nodded my head. I wanted him to be around in case my mother or Stacy attacked me again. He had dealt with situations like this before, so he would know how to respond if things got out of hand again.

“Come, Dear,” said my aunt as she pulled me toward the door. She looked at my uncle and told him to come to my room and get me some clean clothes for me.

“And get my laptop and phone charger,” I said. My phone’s battery was almost dead, and I would need it to call Craig later. We left, and a few minutes later, Uncle Steve and Mr. Ellis came outside. My mother stood at the top of the steps and looked sadly down at me.

I felt like shit. I had put her through so much. She had left for a few days to attend a conference, and she had to return to so much chaos. I understood why she was so angry. I felt that I deserved it. If I had not tried to hide that I was gay for so long, much of what had happened could have been avoided. I could have found a boyfriend, and Craig and I would not have formed a secret relationship. Craig would have gone on living his life as everyone expected him to be.

Now, the walls had crashed down, and our lives were on display to everyone. Going forward would not be easy, but at least I now had family and friends I could trust. I had Aunt Marie and Uncle Steven. I had Blake and Craig beside me. I also knew that I could depend on Mr. Ellis and Mrs. Reinhart if I needed them.

I was quiet on the drive to my aunt and uncle’s house. So much had happened, and I was emotionally drained. All I wanted to do was crawl into a bed and remain there for five days. I didn’t want to deal with anything.

When we arrived, I walked up the sidewalk and opened the door. Blake came rushing across the room, and I fell into his body as he wrapped his arms tightly around me.

I felt safe again.


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