> a Man loves a Boy - book 1 <
- Last time, my ongoing 'Gypsy Series' story ended with:
Feeling guilty, I slumped down on my folding chair, hoping that my young friends would show up and accept my humble excuses. Only, the street in front of my house was empty and it remained empty. After looking around and waiting in vain for a long time, at last, I gave up. I closed my eyes and started to look back upon my own difficult youth, to try to obtain some more insight and find some more peace in myself.
I was sure I had loved my little brother. Little Joshie was the younger brother every kid in the world would wish for. He was like my little shadow, because, wherever I went, he followed me. Always when I was at home, he was there too, now and then staring at me with a knowing expression in his deep brown eyes, as if the little imp knew something that I didn't need to know yet...
My little brother never bothered me. He just always was there, quietly playing in his room or sitting at our table in the living room. Of course, we didn't have any 'television' or 'internet'. Sometimes, we listened to our old radio or we played a game, until it was time to go to bed. My parents were always 'busy' or 'socializing'. They always told me they trusted me enough to leave us alone, from the time when I was twelve years old and Joshie was six.
Indeed, my little brother and I never had any problems. We were always in perfect harmony with each other, even after the little duffer did something stupid with a burning candle and I had to help him with everything, even with his showering and going to the bathroom...
- CHAPTER 3. A little spy, my nightmare, and pondering.
How strange... Now that I closed my eyes, I could have sworn I felt my little brother around! That was impossible, of course, because little Joshie had been dead and buried for more than fifty years. However, I had a strong sensation as if he was here, on my new porch, watching me from nearby. Again, I sensed the well-known feeling of being in perfect harmony with my own little brother. I even opened my eyes and looked around, almost expecting to see him staring at me with his knowing eyes. Of course, nobody was there, and I was all alone on my porch. Now, I felt a bit silly...
Surprisingly, the feeling of not being alone became stronger and stronger. Even with open eyes, I now clearly sensed my little brother watching me, although I was all alone and didn't see anybody around. Strangely, the unusual feeling didn't alarm or frighten me. On the contrary, in some way, my inside felt reassured, as if everything was all right now. Could my little brother be my so-called 'guardian angel' my old Indian Shaman once told me about, watching over me from 'the beyond'? Only, I didn't really believe in these strange 'new-age' things. Dead was dead, and death was the definitive end of everything. Everybody knows that!
Slowly, the unusual feeling changed, as if my little brother took my head and turned it around, to make me look past my house and into my backyard. At the same time, a warm sounding grownup voice in my inside 'told' me to look at some thick bush in a corner! Or, did I make these strange sensations up in my own mind? I wasn't sure...
Although I again felt a bit silly, I decided to listen to the warm and soulful voice in my inside. I even turned my folding chair around, to look at my backyard without straining my neck. Staring at some thick bush, I wondered what could be happening to me. Was I now turning into one of those weird 'new-age' believers I always despised? A moment later, I was sure I saw a tiny movement, as if a few branches swayed back and forth on their own. Clearly, somebody WAS hiding inside that thick bush, probably staring at the 'old man'!
My first thought was: 'Some nosy neighborhood kid is spying on the ancient grandpa.' However, why should anybody do such a thing? Then, another thought popped up in my mind: 'This could be little Harry'... At that thought, my heart jumped up in my chest with pure joy, while my inside reacted with a strangely happy feeling, as if my dearest dreams were fulfilling themselves!
Again, I sensed the same strange feeling I had felt before, as if my life was rapidly reaching its 'final destiny'. As if meeting this burnt little Gypsy boy was what I had been waiting for all my life. Again, faint 'memories' showed up in my mind, of an enormous grizzly bear attacking my screaming little son, while I stormed outside with only a small knife in my hand. Unfortunately, the bear turned towards me and killed me, while my little son stopped screaming and died.
Shuddering from living through the same emotions again, I immediately wanted to rescue my attacked son and bring him to safety! I even had to restrain myself from running towards that thick bush and take 'my poor little son' into my arms! Fortunately, my 'normal' brain was still working, telling me that such wild behavior would almost certainly scare the hiding little spy away...
Carefully, so as not to alarm the hiding child, I sat back on my chair and forced myself to relax. To play it even safer, I closed my eyes, while secretly peeking through my eyelashes. By pretending to fall asleep, I hoped the hiding spy would show up and let me see some more of himself. Inwardly, I 'tuned in' into the burnt little Gypsy orphan, opened my heart towards him, and started to send him as much Universal Love as I was able to muster. At the same time, I 'told' him in my mind that he could trust me and would be more than welcome in his old home; hoping his unconscious mind would pick up some of my energy and my sincere intentions. Then, I waited...
Almost immediately, I saw the same tiny movement again, as if the boy had taken a small step towards me. Obviously, he had picked up my Love and my thoughts, and he reacted as if he could have heard my unspoken words! Much to my surprise, I now saw a pair of very bright blue eyes, curiously peeking through a small gap in the thick bush as if trying to have a better look at me...
For a moment, I felt too stunned to react. Did I really see two bright blue eyes, staring at me from within that thick bush? This was very strange, because John had told me that his little brother was of Gypsy origin, and I always thought that all Gypsies had dark eyes. Maybe, this hiding child was not 'little Harry' but someone else? Well, it didn't really matter. Again, I opened my heart towards the little spy, sending it all the Universal Love that I was able to muster. Inwardly, I continued to speak to the hiding child, hoping he or she would again pick up my Love and my thoughts, and trust me enough to show up and let me see some more...
However, I waited and waited, but nothing happened. The hiding child just stayed where it was. Only its bright blue eyes blinked from time to time, telling me it was still alive and kicking.
After a long time of waiting in vain, I grew too impatient and decided to take some more risk, although I hoped I wouldn't scare the hiding little spy away. First, I opened my eyes and looked directly at where I saw the pair of bright blue eyes, still staring at me. Then, I raised my right hand in a greeting gesture, and tentatively waved at the cleverly hidden child...
Immediately, the bush moved wildly! A small boy bolted out of its backside and raced towards the adjoining yard, nearly tripping over his own feet. For a split second, I saw a small but firmly built boyish frame, adorned with a mop of unruly blond hair. Then, he was gone.
Dammit! This had not been my intent! Clearly, I had been too impatient, in my eagerness to see more of the hiding little spy. Why hadn't I waited for my hiding little friend, until HE was ready to show up and contact me? Feeling disappointed, I rose from my folding chair, entered my house, and closed my front door.
First, I went to my kitchen and brewed another cup of coffee, to squelch my coffee addiction. Then, trying to divert my thoughts, I started to unpack the next cardboard box and stow my belongings away. Only, immediately, my mind started to brood again, this time about what could have gone wrong.
Why was that little boy so scared of me? Could he be afraid I would laugh at him because of his burns? Of course, he didn't know that I was already used to seeing a boy with a badly burnt face, because of my own little brother. Would I ever be able to tell 'little Harry' about little Joshie? Or, would he be too scared from now on, and wouldn't I see him back for a long time? That would be very sad, because I really wanted to meet him. I also wanted to give him his 'own' room back, and ask him about the small 'garden' full of abundantly flowering weeds I had found in my backyard. That is, if he ever dared to return to my house and contact me...
For a long time, I went on brooding about that burnt little Gypsy boy who seemed to be afraid of me. How would I ever be able to contact him, now that he seemed to be too scared to show himself to me? Would I ever be able to meet him and talk to him? Or, would I have to talk to John first? Perhaps, John would be able to convince his 'little Gypsy brother' to join him towards my house and pay me a visit? That is, if John wanted to come back, after I suddenly left him and his friends alone on my porch. Of course, the children didn't know why I suddenly started to cry and fled into my house. Obviously, I had to explain first why I left them alone on my porch without giving them a reasonable explanation...
All these thoughts kept milling around in my brain, until I started to develop a headache and tried to think about something else. Only, although I really tried to divert my thoughts, I seemed to be unable to put that burnt little Gypsy boy out of my mind.
At last, I decided to do something else that might help. I went to my living room and sat down on my couch; planning to 'relive' what had happened. 'Reliving' my actions often helped me see things more clearly, and it certainly gave me a deeper insight into an otherwise too difficult client case.
After closing my eyes, I started to relive the moment when I saw the little spy for the first time, peeking at me from within a thick bush. For quite some time, he only stared at me, probably trying to see some more of the sleeping 'ancient grandpa'. That is, until I became too impatient and waved at him, hoping he had picked up my Universal Love and my thoughts of being welcome, and would trust me enough to show up and contact me... Immediately, a small boy bolted out of the thick bush and stormed into the adjoining backyard, nearly tripping over his own feet in his sudden hurry to get away.
Here, I stopped my mental picture, to have a better look at the fleeing boy. Although he looked a bit small for being eight years old, he showed me a surprisingly strong physique. Unfortunately, I hadn't seen his face, but I was sure I had seen a mop of unruly blond hair on his head. However, immediately, my analytical brain started to doubt again. Didn't all Gypsies have dark hair?
Of course, as a well-trained psychotherapist, I was relatively good at reading 'emotional reactions' and 'primary body language'. Plus, after attending an 'alternative' course in 'aura reading and healing', and practicing its powerful abilities during my therapeutic sessions, I was able to 'feel' the emanating energy fields of my little clients, while 'sensing' their hidden emotions and feelings. Therefore, I started to recall the boy's movements while he fled away, while combining my observations with what my 'reading ability' sensed while looking at the fleeing little spy's protective aura.
Surprisingly, I immediately sensed an astonishing amount of self-consciousness and Inner Awareness in such a small boy! His energy field also showed me something very special in his proud demeanor I could only describe as an aura of Pure Aristocracy, as if this small boy could be sort of a little Prince. Or, did all Gypsy children possess such an enormous amount of Inner Power?
While reading the boy's enveloping aura and sensing his surprisingly confident demeanor, I was sure this proud Gypsy boy was NOT afraid of me, and he would never be! Yes, he had been afraid, but only to be rejected for the umpteenth time, once this stranger would see his so badly burnt face. That was the only reason why he fled away, because I surprised him, and he had been afraid of being disappointed again. Too many people had reacted shocked, shooed him away, or called him a 'freak' or an 'alien', when they saw his so terribly damaged face for the first time.
I also sensed a strong emotional connection to 'my boy', as if I already knew him and we had been close friends before. Therefore, I knew how he felt by just sensing his mood. My inside was sure that, at this same moment, my little friend was regretting his panic and crying his heart out! Or, did I make this 'inner knowledge' up in my own imagination? Again, my analytical mind started to doubt.
Slowly, my thoughts drifted towards my five young neighbors I hadn't seen anymore. Where could they be now? Had they already told their youngest friend about my strange behavior? Of course, they still didn't have the faintest idea why the 'ancient grandpa' suddenly started to cry and fled into his house. I only hoped they wouldn't think it had been their fault, or that I had been angry with them.
For a second, I thought about going for a walk around my new neighborhood, hoping to see my young friends and offer them my well-meant excuses. Only, I took the coward's way out and stayed home. Feeling dead tired from living through so many disturbing emotions, I decided to go to bed early, hoping I would be able to get some sleep in my double waterbed. Quickly, I washed myself with some cold water, before I dived under the blankets and closed my eyes. Fortunately, I tumbled into a deep sleep almost immediately.
In the middle of the night, for the first time since my own horrible youth and Joshie's sudden death, I had a frightening nightmare. The night was pitch dark and, in a small clearing along the road, a Gypsy caravan was attached to an old car. At first, nothing happened. Then, two men sneaked towards the caravan and threw some liquid at it, followed by a burning match. Almost immediately, both the caravan and the old car were on fire! The caravan door opened and a little boy came stumbling out of it, already burning as a torch while screaming for help with a surprisingly deep baritone voice.
Desperately, I tried to reach the burning child, but my feet were stuck in mud and I couldn't move. Fortunately, somebody else quickly pulled the boy out of the blazing inferno and rolled him around and around in lots of cold water and wet grass, to cool his burns; until a howling ambulance showed up and raced him to a hospital.
Feeling totally devastated, I woke up from my frightening nightmare, still loudly screeching for help while trying to free myself from the sticky mud. For quite some time, I continued to struggle with the entangling bed sheets that prevented me from rescuing the burning boy. At last, I woke up some more, sat upright, and looked around, feeling surprised to be lying in some strangely wobbling bed in some foreign looking bedroom I didn't recognize.
Where was I, and what had happened to my bedroom? Had some unknown alien abducted me during my sleep and secretly brought me here, for whatever which reason? And, where was the burning little boy with his surprisingly deep baritone voice, because I still wanted to rescue him from the blazing inferno...
Just before I woke up completely, I heard a warm and soulful voice in my inside, telling me:
"You are approaching your destiny, and your boy needs you!"
Feeling very surprised, I immediately recognized the same warm voice that had asked me to look at that thick bush in my backyard! Although I looked around for who could have talked to me, I was still alone in my new bedroom, lying in my double waterbed, with my feet entangled in the crumpled bed sheets.
Surprisingly, I again sensed the well-known feeling of being in perfect harmony with my little brother, Joshie! Was really little Joshie's 'spirit' around me, here in my new bedroom, to watch over me as my 'guardian angel'? At the same time, my inside was sure I had heard the grownup voice of 'Jack', the deceased former owner of my newly bought house! Don't ask me how I knew, but I was absolutely sure that Jack's spirit was around me and watched over me as well. Could the spirits of both Jack and little Joshie be around me, although I sensed only my little brother's energy?
Feeling very strange, I first disentangled my stuck feet from the crumpled bed sheets. Still feeling tired and sleepy, I rearranged my bed, slumped down, and tried to get some more sleep. Fortunately, hearing Jack's warm and soulful voice in my inside had been a surprisingly soothing and reassuring sensation. Jack's engulfing Cosmic Love had convinced my inside that everything was all right now. I had received his message and could go back to sleep! Feeling reassured, I soon disappeared into a sound and dreamless sleep, without any more frightening nightmares...
The next morning, I woke up with the bright morning sun that teasingly peeked through a crack in my new curtains and tickled my eyes. For a second, I didn't know where I was or what I was doing here, lying in a strangely wobbling bed in some foreign looking bedroom that I didn't recognize. Then, I started to chuckle, because I remembered my new house, my nightmare, and Jack's warm voice in my inside. Obviously, I really was becoming a forgetful old man!
Still yawning, I dragged myself out of bed and ambled downstairs, to get some toiletries. After searching through my cardboard boxes, I found a toothbrush, a comb, and a bar of soap, and took the only kitchen towel I had been able to find so far. Still feeling like a stranger in my new house, I washed my face, combed my hair, and got dressed. Thinking about John, I worked my still wet handkerchief out of my pocket and threw it into my new hamper. Fortunately, I had found three clean ones in one of my cardboard boxes and stuffed them into my pockets. Only, where was my huge packet of tissues I had brought from my old home? I was sure I had put it in one of the many cardboard boxes, but I hadn't been able to find it yet.
After dressing into something casual, I first prepared a more or less decent breakfast from the few scanty leftovers I could find; and I brewed my first cup of heavenly smelling coffee. After squelching my coffee addiction, I would return upstairs to have a closer look at my still unused shower stall. Then, I needed to find a nearby supermarket, to restock my kitchen cupboards and nearly empty refrigerator. That is, if I could find a super-market in this small village.
Still hoping to see my young neighbors, I took my coffee to my porch and sat down on my folding chair. Absent-mindedly, I sipped my drink, while staring at a flock of twittering sparrows that playfully chased after each other through the surrounding gardens, obviously having lots of fun. One of them landed on the railing of my porch, staring curiously at the bearded newcomer it hadn't seen here before. I smiled at the little bird, and it looked back at me as if it thought:
"Don’t you have any breadcrumbs for me? Shame on you, and I expect you to behave better tomorrow!"
Shaking its tiny head, the little animal took off and followed its friends, resuming whatever sparrows were supposed to do for a living. Smilingly, I made a mental note to try to make a couple of new friends, starting tomorrow, by offering them some breadcrumbs. Then, I looked around again, still hoping to see my young neighbors. Or, were they now afraid of me, after my peculiar behavior, and would they try to avoid my house from now on? That would be very sad, because I really wanted to see them again, especially John and his burnt little Gypsy brother. Maybe, they had to go shopping first with their parents, or they had to do some chores first.
Still feeling tired from my unusual emotions, I closed my eyes and slowly dreamed away, while enjoying the nice warmth of the morning sun on my face and the quietness of my new surroundings. This was my new home; and I would make the best of it, with or without any neighborhood children and their burnt little Gypsy friend...
Suddenly, I sat upright, feeling VERY surprised about my own peculiar behavior! Why, for heaven's sake, was I thinking about these KIDS all the time? They were not my clients, I had never seen them before, and I had spoken to them only once, for crying out loud! Yet, these young children seemed to rule my life and dominate all my thoughts, especially John and his burnt 'little Gypsy brother'. Was I really becoming senile, at this way too young age? Never before had I felt this dependent on what was only a bunch of young neighborhood kids. Since yesterday, my whole life seemed to revolve solely around John and his burnt little Gypsy brother, as if they had become the center of my universe and the real meaning of my existence.
What the heck was happening to me? Where had I left my own free will? This certainly was not my usual 'professional' behavior as a well-trained psychotherapist, being retired or not! Obviously, I had to take this situation into my own hands immediately. Perhaps, I had to have an honest therapeutic look at my own behavior first? Hopefully, after I freed myself from my unwanted emotions and cleared my disturbing inner thoughts, my mind would be at peace again.
Leaning back, I closed my eyes and started to relive what had happened since yesterday, this time focusing on my own emotional reactions. First, I recalled five young neighborhood children, leaning against my closed iron gate while staring at what the 'ancient grandpa' was doing. The youngest girl started to fumble with its rusty lock, and five shocked looking kids tumbled over each other and into my driveway, shrieking with laughter! Fortunately, I liked children and always enjoyed working with them and helping them overcome their emotional problems. Many times, both my little clients and their grateful parents told me I was an excellent therapist, having an enormous amount of love and understanding for their troubled kids...
Next, I recalled the oldest boy, who asked where 'Harry' was, and seemed to be very fond of his 'little Gypsy brother'. Unexpectedly, my inside was sure it recognized this young boy with his deep brown eyes, as if he was my dearest friend and I had known him all my life! Although my analytical mind still refused to believe in 'new-age' things like 'reincarnation' or 'past lives', my inside seemed to be sure this young boy and I had been close friends of around the same age, during at least one of our 'past lives', including 'little Harry'...
Again feeling very uneasy, I discarded my strange ideas, and went on reliving what had happened since yesterday. So far, as a trained psychotherapist, I had always been in control of my own feelings and emotions. However, immediately when John told me about his burnt little Gypsy brother and nearly every stranger calling him a 'freak' or an 'alien', all my so carefully built up defense mechanisms fell into shambles! For the first time since I had trained myself to forget my own horrible youth, I lost my self-control and started to cry my heart out, not knowing what to do or how to cope with my emotions.
Surprisingly, I had a 'gut feeling' that somebody else could have arranged our meeting! Could Jack, the deceased former owner of my newly bought house and the 'Big Friend' of the little Gypsy boy he had rescued, have had a hand in this? Could Jack have ARRANGED our meeting in front of his former abode, knowing I was a psychotherapist and thus able to help his little Gypsy friend cope with his burns? Only, Jack was dead and buried since two months ago, and my too analytical mind stubbornly refused to believe in any 'ghostly' or 'spiritual' influences from 'the beyond'. Dead was dead; and death was the definitive end of everything! Everybody knows that! There had to be a more reasonable explanation; unless my rational mind was wrong in its assumptions, and strange new-age things like 'past lives' or 'rein-carnation' were a reality I had to reckon with...
Why did I AGAIN feel little Joshie's energy around me, as if he watched over me as my 'guardian angel' or 'spirit guide'? Why was my inside sure I also felt Jack around me, the deceased former owner of my newly bought house? The strange feeling of being not alone was becoming stronger and stronger, so that my inside couldn't deny it any longer... Both the late Jack's and little Joshie's 'spirits' WERE here, on Jack's former porch, again making me sense the same perfect harmony I always felt when my little brother was around me.
Could my old Indian Shaman have been right, after all? Were really some people able to survive death and stay in or around their former property; to 'haunt' innocent people who unwittingly bought it, as I once saw in some weird 'paranormal' film? Still feeling very uneasy, I fled from my folding chair and hasted inside. Trying to distract my confused mind, I started to unpack the next cardboard box and put its contents away.
Only, within a second, I was again brooding about where the children and their burnt Gypsy friend could be now. Had they already forgotten about the 'ancient grandpa'? Or, had they decided to play somewhere else, and would they avoid my house from now on? That would be truly sad, because I really wanted to meet my 'former son from a past life' who seemed to need me, according to what Jack's warm and soulful voice told me after I had a frightening nightmare...
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- A few excerpts from your wonderful 'fanmail' emails:
> Thank you, for your wonderful story. I've enjoyed each and every chapter. The writing is so gentle and filled with love that it makes most of the other stories seem a little like "little pieces of dirty laundry" (should be hidden away). I look forward to reading the tale of Little Harry, I search the new releases each and every day.
> You are a good storyteller and know how to tell a tale of love and tenderness. To be a story teller is a gift.... you have the gift. I look forward to reading all you write. You have just started a wonderful well balanced story. Please keep the story as deep and proper as you have started and you will end up with a masterpiece in this genre.
> You’ve really touched my heart with this tender, gripping tale, and I have the feeling it’s only going to get better and better as it progresses, and as Big Harry learns to know Little Harry. What amazing kids that bunch of neighbor children are! John is such a little man, so mature already, and I absolutely adore the way they have taken the poor little gypsy boy into their hearts and lives. Jack must have been an amazing man, and I have the feeling Harry is just as wonderful.
> Just read your story and must tell you that it has brought many tears to my eyes. I don't think you need any suggestion on how to continue, as you seem to have a gift to write from the heart. What a truly wonderful story here. I can't wait to read each chapter. As a fellow author your story is sweet and caring.
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