Green Room II
Chapter 16

I was on a major high when I arrived home. Got undressed and hung my chinos in the closet. I take good care of those because they fit so damn well. Then I noticed my `stuff' on the shelf; the strap, the needle and other bits and pieces, just as they were before I left for Kyle's. The battle would intensify even more, I reckoned.

I phoned Bob to check about tomorrow's appointment. He asked if I wanted to chicken out, and said a third guy would be there, his new boyfriend. After that, I slept like a baby.

Bob collected me early Friday morning and we drove straight to his place. I won't tell you what happened there, G. You wouldn't dig it, especially the fact that I enjoyed it, maybe more than I should have.

So where to now? First off, start over with Graham. He's changed too, grown up a bit. The drugs are still in the closet in case you wondered if I returned them to Bob. I won't use it now, but you must understand why it needs to stay there, at least for the moment. Will I use it sometime? I can't answer that. The H? After the trip I experienced visiting Kyle's folks, I don't think I could handle the downers again. But... I can't answer what you're thinking right now, G. I hope you appreciate how hard this is.

Graham's comment that he needed to clear things with his mates before he's prepared to hang with me again? I could have lost my rag when I heard that, but I didn't. You pissed me off badly with that email about my dad, G. I want you to know that.

Before my visit to Kyle's last night, and seeing Graham again, I didn't have a lot to live for. But, deep down, I had the correspondence from you and a means to offload my feelings. It was like being on a psycho's couch, able to say anything I wanted. But those psychos know fuck all. I saw one when I was 13. My folks caught me with coke and figured this old shrink could sort me out. He was ancient, and wore glasses. I was terrified, and didn't resist while he stroked me into a hardon. He tried to convince me I didn't have a problem. I jizzed in my pants, and was so embarrassed while he got off on my heavy breathing. Back home, I washed my own briefs and pants before my mom found them.

I never told my folks because they would not have believed me. The worst was, I often wondered if I enjoyed it. Anyway, I never saw that lamo fuck again.

So what's that, G? Seeing Kyle's folks and Graham: is that the first rung on the hero ladder? I wish I could tell you I'll be fine, and that everything is okay, and that I'll be a right saint. I'd be liar if I did that. I've never asked anyone for much, but right now... I dunno. You got me this far, you and Kyle. I'm no hero, but it would be cool to be just a little decent.

A letter from Spencer to G: How ya doin'? I just read, then re-read, the latest chapters of the Stuart story. This love/hate syndrome you describe is exactly what I went through with my bud Willie during his rehab group counseling sessions. He would say--no, scream is more like it--`I HATE YOU MOTHER FUCKER! GET OUT OF MY LIFE!' At the end of the session he would hug me and tell me how much he loved me. All the group participants went through the same stuff. It was an emotional rollercoaster for sure. I came so close to quitting sometimes. Maybe I liked the abuse. Ha! Actually, I did get off by screaming back at him the same shit. One time another bud attended the session with me, and Willie screamed at both of us: `YOU TWO GOT EACH OTHER TO FUCK AND I GOT NOBODY WHO EVEN CARES!' We were mortified as you can well imagine, in a room full of strangers, including parents. My bud answered calmly, "That's because no one likes you," and walked out. Meanwhile, I just wanted to die. My bud never went back even after Willie asked because he wanted to apologize.

I can see the parallels between Willie and what Stuart is suffering right now ... uncaring parents, no buds that really care. Ya know, if Stuart did attend rehab, those group sessions are mandatory, and who could Stuart ask to accompany him? Who would put up with all the sexuality and other shit? Stuart needs to come to terms with himself or he ain't ever gonna get better. "Hey, I'm gay, okay?"

So hang in there, G. You're making a big difference to the dude's life and he's got nobody else now. That's what my dad said when I wanted to quit Willie's sessions. If I'd known how things would turn out in the end between Willie and me, as close buds, I would never have considered quitting. You got an advantage with email cuz you can choose your words. Face to face, you sorta fly off the handle at times.

Friday night, before clubbing, I phoned Melanie to ask her out.

"Leave Graham alone, Stuart."

"What's your problem, Melanie?"

"You're 18 and he's 14, that's the problem."

"Why is that suddenly an issue? Why wasn't it an issue with Kyle?"

"Because you're an evil son of a bitch, and will never be like Kyle."

"Are you going to hate me forever?"

"And longer."

"Cheers, Melanie."

"If you touch him ... any which way ... if I learn he even had so much as his shirt off in front of you, I'll get money and pay Brett's airfare to Byron."

"And what then, Melanie?"

"You know what Brett will do."

I slammed down the phone, literally shaking with rage. Then I went clubbing. Big bro was there but I don't think he saw me. I kept a low profile.

I got home about 1am, sat by the pool and smoked a joint. I spoke to you and Kyle. I guess you must've heard me. I told Kyle about all the shit you give me. Hahaha! He told me to watch out for the devious old fossil.

Got naked and checked my battered reflection in the mirror, and realized I needed to put everything back together. I've lost so much weight! The bruises are healing, though. My eyes are sunken, with dark rings around them.

I meant what I said, G, about ceasing to write at some stage, especially if I'm busy surfing and hanging with Graham. That's if Melanie butts out. She knows I'll be careful with her so I don't upset the grommet.

I phoned a friend about 2am and spent the night with her. When I got home, I slept most of the day. Late that evening I took a walk down to the beach to do some thinking, and to remember Kyle.

Sunday I spent locked in my room, studying school work, then went for a late surf. Found an uncrowded spot on the backline and chilled out. No word from Graham so maybe Melanie chewed his ear or something. I don't know.
So, another week ... can't be any worse than the last. And there you have it, G. Boring, boring, boring.

So you had a boring weekend? Obviously not from the lack of activity, just the lack of mental stimulation. Anyway, it's normal for teens to be easily bored, which explains their susceptibility to drugs, music that further deafens a deaf man, and clothes that make a `statement'. Teens are impatient. They want to live life to the full. They can't see themselves at 25 or 30. Everything needs to happen NOW. Sooner or later, you'll appreciate that brick walls are built with one brick at a time.

Monday, I trained with Bob at his place. He trains three times a week. It's better to train with him than try to motivate myself alone at home. He has more gym equipment anyway, and a better kit. Besides, he gave me a BJ while I worked the lat machine. Hahaha! And he forbad me to let go of the handles.

Sean phoned me at home just to annoy me. "You're a shit stirrer, Sean, why don't you piss off."

"Come and make me, or are you shitters for Joe's brother?"

"What's your problem, huh?"

"No problem, just making convo. Thought you might like someone to speak to because, the word is, all your friends have ducked. Need boxing lessons or something?" he laughed. "Maybe Graham can train you. He hammered a guy good and solid at school the other day."


"About a week back. Graham is just soooo cool."

"Yeah? And big bro called me a bully?"

"Hey, this guy's a senior!" More laughing. "How ace is that? Joe should've asked Graham to take you instead of his big bro. That would be solid!"

"When you guys are ready, you can come get me anytime."

"I'll make sure Graham gets your message."

"You know what I meant. You're chicken shit."

"I'm shaking in my boots. Oooooo!"

"See ya, Sean."

"No worries. See you on the tarmac." More laughing.

So what do you think, G? I thought Graham would have phoned me after our meeting at Kyle's. I picture him getting some screwed message from Sean, and not bothering to check its authenticity with me. Maybe Melanie is in on the conspiracy as well.

My boxing bag and kit should arrive soon. I expect it to cause a total freakout with my dad, but I want to train. Kyle changed a lot when he boxed regularly with Brett. Besides letting off steam, his fitness improved.

On Tuesday I woke and promised myself a smoke-free day. But I lit a joint anyway and smoked by the pool. I thought about Kyle and the trip we took to the Gold Coast for the surfing comp. That is definitely one of the most awesome memories I have of him. Just the two of us hitched there and back. Two hunky teen surfers walking along the side of the road with just our backpacks and boards. We were frustrated by trying to hitch a ride while carrying our sticks. You know what Kyle was like. We were on a long stretch of road coming into Murwillumbah and could not get a ride. Kyle took off his shorts and scants, and dared me to do likewise. We walked like that for about 5 kilometers in the dark. It must have been the night air that caused our woodies to rise.

The first car to approach, pulled over. It must have been the funniest sight; the two of us struggling to get our shorts back on before the driver backed up. We left our briefs in our backpacks. The driver was a hoot, though. "I thought you guys had mini shorts on. Then I caught sight of your dicks as I drove past. I couldn't believe it!" Hahahaha! So he stopped to offer us a ride, and laughed all the way to Byron.

Have a cool Valentine's, G. I know you'll be thinking of Kyle too.

What did Kyle see in you, Stuart? I think you're beginning to see it yourself.