I know I should feel dirty, but I don’t. Lying on top of Colton with my lips pressed to his seems…natural. I don’t feel full of sin as I would expect to feel.
I can feel his erection against mine, as we grind our bodies against each other. For a brief second, I wondered what my father would think if he knew what I was doing. Colton had just come out to his parents, and he didn’t feel any remorse. In fact, it was something he said he had been planning to do, all because of me.
But at this moment, I don’t want to think about my father. I don’t want to consider if what we are doing is right or wrong. For just this moment, I want to experience and revel in the love that Colton just confessed for me.
I jumped when Colton snaked his hand between us and rubbed my hardness. “No,” I pleaded as I pulled his hand away. “I’m not ready for this yet.”
He smiled and asked, “You sure?” I nodded my head.
Colton rose from the bed, extended his hand to me and pulled me up. He then leaned in and kissed me gently.
“God, Bobby,” he said as he put his cheek against mine. “I can’t begin to tell you how I feel right now.”
I hugged him tightly and replied, “Probably about how I’m feeling.” He looked at me, smiled and then kissed me again.
He took my hand and pulled me toward the door. “We better go downstairs before people start getting suspicious.”
When we entered the kitchen, Jerome was sitting alone. He looked up and said, “It took you guys long enough.” I know my face blushed, but he didn’t seem to notice.
Colton asked, “Where’s Tiffany?”
He replied worried, “She’s with her father and your dad in the study.” He explained how Mr. Martin had arrived while we were gone. Jerome said he appeared angry, and that he wanted to talk to Tiffany alone. “Your father insisted on joining them.”
I looked worriedly at Colton. I felt Tiffany had been through so much. The last thing she needed was a confrontation with her father. Her mother and grandmother had already gone to jail.
“I hope things turn out,” I said as I sat beside Colton and began drinking a soda. I looked up at the clock on the wall. It was after midnight. Colton appeared like he was ready to fall asleep at any minute.
A few minutes later, Tiffany, her father and Mr. Wilder entered the kitchen. I was surprised that Tiffany was smiling. She walked over to Jerome and grabbed his hand. “Come on,” she said as she pulled him off the stool. “Daddy said you can spend the night. He called your parents, and they said it was alright.”
Jerome appeared surprised as Tiffany led him from the kitchen. Before leaving, Tiffany ran over and kissed me and Colton on the cheek. “What’s that for?” I asked.
“Just because,” she replied with a smile. She turned, grabbed Jerome’s hand and led him from the room. Mr. Wilder followed behind them.
I gave Colton a puzzled look and asked, “What is going on?”
He replied, “I don’t have a clue.” He shook his head and said, “This night can’t get any crazier.”
I giggled and said, “You didn’t say that ten minutes ago.” He started to lean in and kiss me, but his father entered the room.
Colton asked, “What’s going on, Dad?”
“Mr. Martin’s a pretty down to earth guy,” he responded. “He’s having trouble dealing with Tiffany being like she is and all. But I think he’s handling it pretty well.” Colton’s face turned red when his father added, “Kinda like I’m doing with you right now.”
He walked over to the refrigerator, took out another Bud Light and then came and sat down at the counter. “It’s not easy being a parent,” he said as he popped the beer open and took a swig. “There should be a book for night’s like tonight.”
“Sorry, Dad,” mumbled Colton. I wanted to reach over and take his hand, but I was too afraid. His father didn’t seem to mind that Colton was gay. However, he might object to us showing how we felt about each other.
“You’ve done nothing wrong, Son” insisted his father. “Things just are what they are. I think Mr. Martin and I realized that tonight.”
I asked worriedly, “What about Tiffany’s mother and Mrs. Oliver? Do you know what’s happened to them?”
“They were detained at the police station,” he replied. “Mr. Martin picked them up before coming here.”
Colton looked at me and said, “That means you can go home tonight.”
I was surprised when Mr. Wilder said, “Not if you don’t want to.”
“What does that mean, Dad?” asked Colton. His father said that he had talked to Mrs. Oliver, and they agreed that because it was so late, that I could spend the night if I wanted. I readily agreed.
“I’m also taking you boys to school in the morning,” he continued. “What happened tonight has to be dealt with. Mrs. Edwards has some explaining to do about how things got so out of control.”
I replied, “It was my father. He was behind all this.”
“Then maybe I need to have a word with him,” he suggested.
Colton laughed and said, “You do know his father is Pastor Long?”
“All the more reason to have a talk with him,” replied Mr. Wilder. He looked up at the time. “Why don’t you boys go on up to bed now. I’ll wake you up in the morning around nine.”
Colton asked excitedly, “You mean we can sleep late?”
“Just until nine,” replied Mr. Wilder. “Now go get the sleeping bag out of the closet. And try not to wake your brother.” He rose, stretched, yawned and left the room. I followed Colton into the garage. He went to a closet and took out two sleeping bags.
I asked, “I thought we only needed one?”
He laughed and said, “You don’t think I’m letting you sleep on the floor alone, do you?”
I giggled and replied, “I kinda thought you’d sleep on the floor, and I would sleep in your bed.”
“Not a chance,” he laughed. I followed him to his room. I hadn’t noticed before, but there were two twin beds in the room. The one we had lain on earlier was Colton’s. On the other side of the room was Colton’s brother wrapped up in a blanket asleep. Colton quietly opened on bag and laid it on the floor. He then took the other and used it as a cover.
I gave him a puzzled look and asked, “Are we sleeping together?”
“Of course,” he smiled. “Just don’t get any ideas.” He glanced over at his brother. He then whispered softly, “He might see us.”
I giggled and replied, “Not if we’re careful.” We undressed down to our underwear. I wore briefs, Colton was wearing a gray pair of boxer briefs. Both of us were fast asleep as soon as we lay down.
Colton’s brother woke us up around 7:00. When he jumped out of bed, he looked down at us on the floor. “What’s going on?” he asked his older brother.
Colton’s brother looked like a smaller version of him. He appeared to be about fourteen, and his hair was cropped shorter than Colton’s. He had the same brown eyes, and long, lanky body. He looked at me and asked, “Who are you?”
Colton covered his head with the blanket and mumbled, “Why don’t you go get ready for school and leave us alone?”
“You didn’t answer my question,” his brother stated. He crossed his arms and continued to stare down at us.
Before Colton could get upset, I told his brother, “I’m Bobby.”
“What are you doing here?”
Suddenly, Colton rose up and shouted, “Get out!” His brother turned and scurried from the room. Colton covered his head once again and muttered, “Be glad you don’t have any younger brothers.” His brother returned several times to get dressed, but he tiptoed around the room so he wouldn’t disturb us. I waited until he was finished before I got up and went to the bathroom across the hall. Since I was in my underwear, I peeked out to make sure no one would see me.
When I went back to the room, I tried to sleep, but I couldn’t. Colton was out to the world. I lay for a while listening to him snore lightly before finally deciding to get out of bed. I dressed quietly so as not to awaken him.
When I went downstairs, his father was in the kitchen drinking a cup of coffee. He smiled when he saw me. “Sleep well?” he asked.
“Yes, Sir,” I replied. My face began to redden. I wasn’t sure if he had looked in the room to see us sleeping together, or if Colton’s brother had mentioned it.
He pointed to the refrigerator. “There’s milk in there,” he said. He then pointed to the cabinet and told me that there were several boxes of cereal. “Have what you want,” he laughed. “With seven children around here, I should buy stock in General Mills.” I grabbed a box of Cherrios and poured them into a bowl. After adding milk into the bowl and a glass from the cabinet, I stood and looked around the kitchen.
“I don’t bite, Bobby,” laughed Mr. Wilder. “You can join me,” he said as he pointed to a chair across from him.
We sat for a few minutes in silence. I was eating quickly so I could finish and go back upstairs to join Colton. Mr. Wilder got up, poured himself another cup of coffee and sat back down.
He cleared his throat and then said, “Tell me what happened last night. So far I’ve only gotten bits and pieces. I know Tiffany is involved, but what I don’t understand is how all hell broke out.”
I wasn’t sure where to begin. I figured that since Mr. Wilder was going to confront Mrs. Edwards, he would need more information about what had occurred.
“Mrs. Edwards isn’t to blame,” I began. He nodded his head and told me to continue. It took me about ten minutes to relate what had been happening at school. I told him how other students had been taunting and ridiculing Tiffany because of her appearance. He smiled slightly when I told him how Colton had protected her several times, including the incident where he had injured his hand.
“I think he was more concerned about you,” he said. I looked away as my face reddened. “It’s okay, Bobby. I don’t mean to embarrass you.”
I looked over and responded nervously, “Yes, Sir.”
He smiled again and continued, “It took a lot of courage for Colton to come out to his mother and me last night. He said he wanted to wait a few more years, but he wanted to do it now.” He took a sip of coffee before continuing.
“He came out now because of you.”
I looked at him and asked, “Me, Sir?”
“He cares a lot for you,” replied his father. “His mother and I don’t quite understand right now, but we love Colton. We respect his decisions.”
Tears welled up in my eyes. “I wish my father could be like you,” I responded sadly.
He looked worried as he asked me, “You want to tell me about it?” I thought a moment and then nodded my head.
“It’s a long story, Sir,” I replied tearfully.
He got up, poured another cup of coffee and said, “I have the time. Why don’t you tell me?”
I don’t know why I wanted to confide in him. Maybe it was the concern I saw in his eyes. He was the father of seven children, and for some reason, I thought he would understand. For so long, I wanted someone to listen to me. I had been carrying the pain alone for so long. So I told Mr. Wilder everything.
When I finished, both our eyes were wet with tears. Telling him about the feelings I had been experiencing for so long sounded even worse when I put them into words. I had broken down several times, and Mr. Wilder would pat my arm while I composed myself.
He stood and looked down at me, “Someone needs a hug,” he smiled as he as he opened his arms wide. I stood and collapsed into his strong embrace. He held me several minutes while I cried. At that moment, it felt like a huge weight had been lifted from my shoulders.
Finally, he pulled away and smiled. “Feel better?” he asked.
“Yes, Sir,” I replied as I wiped tears from my eyes. “I’m sorry for being such a baby.”
“Bobby,” he insisted, “It took great courage for you to open up to me like you just did.” He stepped forward and gave me another hug. It surprised me when he said, “You’ll be the perfect boyfriend for Colton.”
Before I could respond, he grabbed his cup and poured more coffee into it. “Now why don’t you go get that lazy bag of bones.” He looked up at the clock. I looked up and realized that we had been talking for almost two hours. It was almost ten o’clock.
When I went upstairs, Colton was wrapped up in the blankets sleeping soundly. I lay down beside him and kissed him deeply. He moaned and asked, “What was that for?”
“Just because,” I replied with a smile.
Colton wanted to do something, but I insisted that his father would probably come upstairs and get us if we didn’t leave right away. Begrudgingly, he put on his clothes. Since I was watching his every move, he made sure to make it an enjoyable show.
When we got downstairs, Mr. Wilder informed us that he had spoken to Mrs. Edwards on the phone. He said that Tiffany and her mother would also be there. Colton’s father looked up at the kitchen clock. “We better be going, Boys,” he said. “The meeting is at 11:00.” I looked up and it was 10:45.
When we arrived at school, students were heading towards the cafeteria for the first lunch period. Mrs. Edwards was standing in the hallway directing students to their classes. She approached us when we entered the building.
She stepped before Mr. Wilder and stated, “I should warn you before we go into my office that Mr. Steele, the superintendent, and Mr. Jacobsen, the school board president are waiting.”
Mr. Wilder asked, “Has Tiffany and her mother arrived?”
“No,” replied Mrs. Edwards. “I was out here waiting for them.” Just then, Jerome came running up to us.
He timidly waved at Colton and me. “Hey, Guys.”
Mrs. Edwards warned him that he would be late for class if he didn’t hurry. “Can’t I attend the meeting?” he pleaded. “I was involved last night, too.”
“But your mother isn’t with you, Dear,” she insisted. “You really should be represented by an adult.”
Mr. Wilder said, “I’ll assume that task.” He put his hand on Jerome’s shoulder and walked away. It appeared that Jerome had given Mr. Wilder his mother’s phone number. He talked to her for a minute before stepping back over to Mrs. Edwards.
“Mrs. Norman has given me permission to act on Jerome’s behalf.” Mrs. Edwards seemed upset, but she didn’t protest.
“I really don’t see what good it will do to have all these children present for the meeting,” she said.
Mr. Wilder replied sarcastically, “It is about ‘the children.’ They have every right to speak for themselves.”
“Well,” huffed Mrs. Edwards. “Mr. Steele and Mr. Jacobsen won’t like it.”
Colton, Jerome and I snickered when Mr. Wilder responded, “I don’t give a damn what they don’t like.”
Just then, Tiffany and Mrs. Martin came walking towards us. Mrs. Oliver was with them using her cane. Jerome ran up to Tiffany and grabbed her hand. He noticed the scowl on Mrs. Edwards face, and he released her hand.
Mrs. Edwards assembled us together. She looked at us and warned, “Please keep this meeting civil. There’s a lot at stake here, and the best way to deal with it is in a mature manner. After Saturday night, we don’t need people to get upset again.”
Mr. Wilder replied, “That works both ways.” Mrs. Edwards frowned, and we followed her down the hall towards the office.
Instead of going to her office, we followed her into a large conference room. Three men in suits were speaking softly when we entered. They stood when we entered. They introduced themselves to Mr. Wilder, Mrs. Martin and Mrs. Oliver. None of them made any attempt to speak to the rest of us.
Mr. Steele seemed to take charge. He pointed to the chairs he wanted us to sit. Naturally, he had the adults sit nearest him while the rest of us sat on chairs around the wall. We turned when we heard someone rap on the door. It was Cathy.
She looked around the room before walking up to Mrs. Edwards. “May I attend, too?” Mr. Steele angrily insisted to know who the ‘rude little girl’ was. Of course, Cathy is anything but little. It was obvious that he was trying to be insulting.
“I’m Catherine Downing,” she informed him. She pointed towards me and the other boys. “I was with them Saturday, and I feel I have as much right to be here as them.” Mrs. Edwards whispered something in his ear.
“Very well,” he remarked rudely. He pointed to a chair next to Tiffany. “You can sit there. But behave. Any outbursts and you’ll be removed.” Colton and I giggled because we saw Cathy give him the finger when she turned to sit down.
Mr. Steele spoke first. He looked around the room and said, “I have been doing nothing since Saturday night but answering the phone.” He looked at Tiffany, furrowed his eyebrows and stated, “This is quite a mess you’ve made.”
Mrs. Oliver rose, leaned across the table and shouted, “That is my granddaughter you’re talking about! All she’s asking for is the chance to use the restroom.” She slammed her cane on the table. “I wouldn’t call that a mess.”
Mr. Wilder grabbed her cane. I think he was afraid she was going to strike Mr. Steele with it.
Mr. Jacobsen stood and shouted, “This isn’t natural! The whole country is beginning to buckle under to these extreme radicals!” He jumped back when Mrs. Oliver tried to hit him with her cane.
“People!” shouted Mrs. Edwards. “We have to be civil!”
“Civil, my ass!” responded Mrs. Oliver. Colton looked at me, and we had to stifle a laugh. It was funny watching an old woman getting upset. “We came here to try and work out a problem.”
She lifted her cane to strike Mr. Jacobsen, but Mr. Wilder grabbed it. “All we got was a damned bunch of bigots!”
“Mrs. Oliver! Please!” pleaded Mrs. Edwards. “Can’t we conduct this meeting like adults?”
Mrs. Oliver ignored Mrs. Edwards as she leaned over the table and stared Mr. Steele in the eyes. She asked, “Are you going to give my granddaughter the right to use the restroom?”
Mr. Jacobsen replied, “He has the right to use the boy’s restroom, just like any other male in this school.”
Mrs. Oliver spat, “She doesn’t want to use the boys’ restroom. She wants to use the girls’. Are you going to let her do it?”
Mr. Jacobsen stood and insisted adamantly, “Of course not! If he has to use the restroom, then let him use the one he’s been assigned.”
“Fine,” replied Mrs. Oliver. She walked over, grabbed Tiffany’s hand and said, “Come on, Dear.”
She pulled her from the room with the rest of us following. We thought she was going to leave the building, but instead, she continued to hold Tiffany’s hand as they walked down the hall. She stopped before a girl’s restroom.
“Come with me,” she said as she pulled Tiffany into the restroom. Mrs. Martin and Cathy followed them inside. Three girls soon came scurrying out.
Mr. Steele and Mr. Jacobsen rushed up and stood before the door. Mr. Steele looked over at Mrs. Edwards and ordered her, “Call Sheriff Tackett.”