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 Chapter 14: Thrones & Knights

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Kell
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PostSubject: Chapter 14: Thrones & Knights   Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:09 pm

I left my house to go see Taylor & talk to him about Ted returning. Nobody was home so I had to walk there.

I got to his house a bit later & walked up the walkway to the front door. About 15 feet away, the door opened & I looked up.

"Can I help you?" said Taylor's mom, standing between the door & the frame, leaving me no room to see the house inside. Clearly, she didn't want me being near the door, let alone inside.

"Um, I'm looking for Taylor. Is he here?"

"No."

I paused to let her tell me where he was. It was two & a half seconds of my life that I would never get back.

"Ok. Do you know where he is then?" I tried again.

"He's at a friend's house. Don't ask whose, I don't know."

Don't lie bitch, you know. You don't know he's not THERE but you certainly know whose house he said.

"Do you mind if I come in & just wait for him then?" I said, making my way to the door.

"Well, actually-"

"Thanks," I smiled as I made my way by her & into Taylor's house.

"Where's the bathroom?" I said. If she was going to be a bitch, then so was I.

She looked as if she was about to protest, but then gave in.

"It's upstairs, last room on the left," she pointed up the stairs & then folded her arms & walked away.

"Thanks," I gave a shit-eating grin. Point for Owens.

I made my way down the hallway towards the bathroom. Just before I got there though, I passed a bedroom I couldn't help but glance into. It was clearly a teenage boy's room. I looked down the hallway to make sure no one was around & walked into the room. I was standing in Taylor's bedroom.

There was the typical stuff I saw; his bed, his desk & a tv on a table across the foot of his bed. But around the room was a seemingly endless display of medals, awards, trophies & ribbons. On his bureau must have been at least nine trophies, mostly sports. Though some were for academic championships apparently. On shelves were certificates for academic excellence, outstanding academic performance & honorary words of overall greatness.

His desk & night stand were covered with a few pictures of him in suits, mostly shaking peoples' hands for things he won. There were also pictures of him standing with people who looked to be in the sports industry. He was shaking hands with some football coaches.

The room was a shrine of academic & athletic honor. I glanced at his desk & saw a few letters from some incredible schools asking him to attend. UCLA, Florida State, BC, BU, William & Mary...

I couldn't have picked my jaw up off the floor if I had wanted to. I was beyond proud of Taylor for all these accomplishments. Everybody knew he was the A-student, most popular, star athlete, captain & quarterback for the school's football team, but this was something else.

I decided to do what any good person would do when in somebody's room & all alone.

I snooped.

I didn't dig around furiously looking for anything in particular, I just looked around more carefully to see what I could come across. I looked in his closet, which had half a dozen suits & dress pants. Nothing in there. I looked in his night stand drawers, in his bureau, in his desk & under his bed. There must be something in his room that would be juicy. And then it hit me.

I walked over to his bed & stuck my hand down the back between the mattress & the headboard.

What teenage boy doesn't have...Ah-HA!

I pulled out some magazines. You can guess what kind they were. I looked at the covers & realized they were gay.

Hey wait a sec...these were mine!

Sneaky closet queer boyfriend of mine was apparently stealing from me. I didn't whether to be upset that he was the one responsible for my stash disappearing, over thankful that he making sure my pile wasn't overloading. I decided to be thankful.

Suddenly, I heard a door close & in a panic, I dropped the magazines on the floor & dashed to the bathroom, closing the door quickly but quietly. Luckily, the suddenness of it all had made it easier for me to piss. Once I washed my hands & dried them, I calmly left the bathroom, only to hear voices from downstairs in the foyer. I sidled my way down the wall until I reached the corner, leaving myself out of sight, but able to hear perfectly what was being said. It sounded like Taylor's parents talking to each other.

"...is here," I caught his mom saying.

"Why?" his dad asked.

"Because he was looking for Taylor."

"Ok. Where are they?"

"Well Taylor's not here, he's at another friend's house. But this... boy just barged in."

"Why?"

"He wants to wait for Taylor to get back."

"For what?"

"I don't KNOW John. Just do something about it, I don't want him in my house. I can't stand the thought of our son with a 'homosexual'," she hissed out the last word. Don't flatter me.

"Wait, Nick as in that kid who was over here before?"

"Yes."

"Why is Taylor hanging around with queers?"

"I don't know John..."

"Well maybe a Bible & few smacks will bring him around. I'm not having that boy's life ruined just because some little fag wants him to do Lord knows what with him & keeps him away from what matters. I'll have him stay after Mass for a few hours each Sunday."

The homophobic comments I could deal with fine. But it was the sick & twisted things they were saying about how they thought I was corrupting Taylor was downright hurtful. The fact that they thought sweet prince son being happy & with someone who he cared about greatly would destroy his future was like salt in an open wound. It stung & it was no ingrained in me. They were talking about punishing Taylor for dong NOTHING, right in front of me. Part of me wanted to run & leave, part of me wanted to scream at them for their wickedness & part of me...was just too scared to move. An angry tear rolled down my cheek & over my lips as I lightly huffed & puffed. I was FURIOUS!

"Get him out of here," his mother ordered.

Suddenly, I heard footsteps coming up the stairs. I quickly wiped my face & tried to act as though I had just left the bathroom. His father made it to the top of the stairs & stopped when he saw me. I quickly made my way past him, keeping my head down. I was humiliated, like some sort of pathetic clown.

"Um, I think I'm gonna go. Can you just have Taylor call me?" I said as I went down the stairs & to the door, past his mother.

"He'll be busy," I heard his dad call.

As I made it to the door, I opened it & turned around. I opened my mouth to say something, but instead breathed out & shook my head as I slammed the door shut behind me.

I was just leaving the property when my phone rang. It was a restricted call, but I picked it up.

"Hello?"

"Hey...it's me."

It was Ted.

"How did you...you remembered my cell number?" I asked.

"Are you kidding? I memorized it when we were...ya know...so what's up?" he asked.

"I just left Taylor's house."

"Oh."

"He wasn't there & I overheard his parents."

"What do you mean?"

"They were talking about how they think I'm gonna hurt Taylor's future if he's friends with a gay kid."

"Why?"

"Because they're religious whack jobs. And his dad was saying how he's gonna hit him & force him to stay after Mass on Sundays. This sucks. I just can't believe they think I'll corrupt him. You have no idea how much that hurts," I sniffed, starting to get upset as I kept walking.

"You think I don't know?" he said.

"What?"

"My parents MOVED us because they ALSO thought you were gonna corrupt me & because they thought maybe living in a new place would 'fix me'. I know how you feel Nick. My own parents...thinking that a 'friend' of mine would make me turn into this gross, disgusting kind of person."

"Were your parents religious?"

"No. But they thought it was disgusting to be gay."

I always remembered his parents as being really friendly. I guess that goes to show people can fool you easily.

"Are you ok?" he asked.

When Ted & I were together, we were completely & always honest with each other. Had this happened back then, I would have flat out said no, I WASN'T ok. But as he asked the simple question, it dawned on me how little I trusted him now. I was surprised. It wasn't that I DISTRUSTED him, it was just that after two years of him not being around, I couldn't find the comfort of telling him things, like how I ACTUALLY felt.

"Yeah, I'm fine."

"Nick," he said, knowing I was lying.

"I'm fine Ted."

I heard him faintly sigh over the phone.

"Well I wanted to know if maybe you wanted to hang out tonight? We could catch up, talk, whatever."

"I don't know, I kind of got a lot goin' on right now. Maybe another time."

Slight pause.

"Sure. Call me when you wanna do something."

He gave me his new cell phone number & we hung up. I was almost to my house now.

**********

I woke up from a nap several hours later to the sound of the doorbell. I got up, put some pants on & went to the door to see who it was. I looked out the little window & saw that it was Taylor.

"Hey," I smiled sleepily as I opened the door.

"Hi," he grinned as he came in.

I kissed him on the lips as I closed the door & we walked over to the living room.

"So I heard you were at my house earlier," he said as he sat down in a chair & crossed his legs.

"Yeah, & I felt like a clown with them talking about shit."

"What were they saying anyway?"

"They think I'm corrupting you if we're friends."

"Wow. Imagine what they'd think if they knew we were together," he smiled.

"Taylor, this is so NOT funny. I mean your parents hate me. This is like a one-way Romeo & Juliet for Christ's sake!"

"I'm Romeo."

I rolled my eyes.

"Nick, don't worry about my parents," he said, getting up & sitting down next to me & placing his hand on my leg. He leaned over & kissed me on the lips.

"How can you tell me not to worry? My mom can't stand me being gay, BOTH your parents would rather die than let you hang around with me, let alone accept that you're gay & have me as a boyfriend. This sucks."

"I know. Think about it like this...you're not the one still in the closet, so you don't have as much to worry about."

I nodded. He was right, at least about that. I knew that Taylor's coming out would be more difficult than mine. So for now, I shrugged my shoulders & we messed around like we were planning to before we were interrupted.

**********

Later that night as I was drifting off to sleep, I thought about the damn obstacles in the way now.

There were our parents. Granted, my dad was...tolerant of it, my mom wasn't proud of my "choice" as she liked to call it. But like Taylor had told me earlier, at least they KNEW I was gay. For all I know, Taylor telling his parents that he was gay could be suicide. Unlike other gay friends I had who were pushy & always trying to get closeted boyfriends to come out, I was patient. I had to stick to my mental check-off list that had gotten Taylor & me this far. I NEEDED to help Taylor through this, & if I had to suffer a little bit from the prowling eyes of our parents & peers, then so be it.

Then there was Ted.

Just yesterday was one of the countless days I wasn't thinking about him & today, he shows up on my doorstep like a puppy finding its way home after so long. It killed me to think about him. My heart couldn't help but reach out to him. I wanted so badly to reconnect with him & be friends & put our middle school years behind us.

But my brain, conscience & reasoning told me not to. I was in love with TAYLOR. Not Ted. And even if I wanted to become friendly with Ted again, could I really trust him to stay & not fuck us up again? I didn't know. I tried convincing myself that while I usually felt that heart beats mind...this time, I knew that if I wanted my heart to stay safe...I needed to stay away from Ted.

With a stressful sigh, I turned over & brought the covers up closer to me.

What else could POSSIBLY go wrong?

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Chapter 14: Thrones & Knights
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