Part 2 Chapter 4 : Alive.

Copyright 2005-2006. All rights reserved. Applies to all chapters in this series.

This story is fictional based on fictional characters. Any similarity to any person living or dead is coincidence. This story may contain man/teen boy or man/preteen boy or teen/preteen boy sex. It may contain no sex at all. I haven't decided yet.

If this is legal for you to read and is the sort of stuff you enjoy reading then read and enjoy. If this is not legal for you to read and/or is not the sort of stuff that you enjoy then do not read. You have the choice.

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It was weird.. I went to sleep hearing the phone ring.. Then silence. Absolute silence.

What felt like a long time later I was dreaming again. Not of anything of any beauty. I was in a wasteland. Everything, as far as I could see, was burnt and broken. What wasn't ash was a twisted mess, unrecognisable from what it was before. The whole world had been destroyed by fire. Nothing moved. Nothing lived. All was dead.

For a while I looked around. I could see nothing to give me any hope that there was something other than destruction. Just blackness. Even the sun seemed distant and cold. And somehow much darker.

After a while I began to be aware of something.. A gentle warm breeze brushed past my cheek. No, something else. I could not place it but something would brush past my cheek every now and then. At first it reminded me of David's touch, and I wanted to run and hide. But where could I hide, and how could I run from something unseen?

Panic was soon replaced by hope. The touch, while unknown, meant that I was no longer alone in this dark, desolate place. Something else was alive here.

A short while after that I thought I could hear someone calling me. Then I began to realise that I could hear David. Somehow, he was able to speak to me from the world that I had once called home. Despite whatever distance lay between us, I could hear his voice. I listened as he spoke.

“What a mess. I am so sorry my love. I wish I could bring you home. We could clean this mess up and fix things. Come back to me please. Come back home. We can work this out and fix it, make it better than before. Please, come back. I love you so much and can't live without you”.

Suddenly things changed. The world got darker. With a thump I was lying on my side. David was sitting next to me, stroking my cheek in the way he used to, gently talking to me in little more than a whisper. It took me a few moments more to realise what was happening.

I was alive, and in hospital. I had just been taken from some weird dream world back to reality, and with the state of my mind I cannot actually tell when the change happened. It just happened. It seemed almost seamless.

I was in a darkened room, with only a nearby night light and lights from some machines that were hooked up to me. David was sitting next to me, telling me of his love. The love he betrayed. I said all that my mind was able to think of at the time.

“Go away”.

Whether he did or not I don't know. Shortly later I was back in my lonely desolate world. All other life was far away, either in time or space. Again, I was the only thing alive that I could see. Nothing else moved. Nothing else lived. Then all was black.

Some time later I came round again. I could see my mother sitting a few feet away. She looked absolutely wasted. I could see that she had been crying. She was asleep, but woke when she heard me calling her name. She came over to hug me.

As she did, I tried to sit up. Suddenly I felt hot and faint, and collapsed back into bed. Mum grabbed at something by my side and then started kissing me in between comments about how good it was to have me back, how happy she was to hear my voice.

A few moments later a nurse walked in. She checked a few things with me before noting them and leaving. Mum and I continued to talk for a while. Just general stuff though, nothing about why I was in there, or about how long I had been there. A short while later a doctor came in, checked my chart, and said that I should be able to go home that afternoon.

A while later a psych was sent in to see me. She talked with me about why I had tried to kill myself, what was going on at home and so on that made me try. I didn't go into much detail, just told her that my partner had been seeing another guy, we had a messy break up, and that I had lost a couple of good friends as a result. She tried probing for more information, and I guessed that she already knew about me and David, but I didn't say any more.

The surprise visit came from Dan Travis. He was there on another issue but heard that I was there and came in to visit me.

He was not the same guy I met at Jane Oliver's funeral a while ago. He seemed much gentler and to have developed a genuinely caring side. He talked about a break up he had when he was not much older than I was, and how bad he had felt about it and tried to kill himself. He went on to say that it was made worse because he was totally wrong about it. He threw away the relationship and almost threw away his life because he saw his girlfriend hugging another guy. He put his own meaning on it and dumped her. He said that he was to stupid to think of anything other than that she was screwing around on him. It was some months later, after she had moved on, that he found out that the guy she was hugging was her brother who she had not seen in some months. He said that we had to be careful when we place meanings on things that happen to us, because often while our meanings are valid, they are very wrong. He suggested that I at least talk to David and see what he and Peter were up to.

I still don't know if I can stand seeing David again, and I told him that. He had to leave then, but he just asked me to think about it. Then the strangest thing happened as he walked out the door. He turned, looked me in the eye and said “By the way, I forgot to thank you. I'll see you later”.

I still can't think what it was he was thanking me for.

Next was Angela. She was on duty on my ward that afternoon, and she came in to see me. She didn't appear to know why I was there at first. She did a check on me, then left. A few minutes later she was back.

“Louise, have you had any lunch yet?” she asked.

Mum shook her head, so Angela suggested that she would stay with me while mum took some time out to get some lunch.

She waited for a few seconds after mum left.

“Ok Nathan, I want to know why you tried to kill yourself. No bullshit, I won't stand for it. I want to know what the fuck made you think that you had some right to hurt your family and your friends like this?”.

“I don't have any friends. No one but maybe my mum cares about me” was my reply.

“Bullshit. You heartless little bastard. “ She said slowly. “Have you not seen how upset those around you have been as you've shut them out of your life? I can think of a dozen people who are really hurting because of how you've treated them, and you know what? I barely know you, and I barely know your friends, and I can see it!”

“If they care, then why have they sided with that freak?” I asked, aware of the tears starting to well up in my eyes.

“WHAT? We've been in to see you. Sure, we've talked about David, but that's because you to are so good together. I think it's meant to be. I'm a Christian, and I believe that homosexuality is a sin, but when I see you two together I can't see any reason to object to it. And we talk about him because we see you as being very happy with him. Look at yourself. Two weeks without him and you can't even LIVE. Three weeks ago you were the happiest teenager on the planet!”.

She stopped for a moment as if in thought, as if struggling with her own views even. When she spoke again, it was quieter and softer than her last bit.

“It's meant to be Nathan. You and he should be together. And look at your friends! They were so happy three weeks ago, and now they're all sad and crying. Why? Because you're not happy. Their happiness depends on your happiness and they love you so much that unless you're happy, they can't be. In future, don't be so damned selfish!”.

I couldn't answer. I could see that she had learned some of David's tricks, and that I would not get an easy time. As I thought about this, I realised that she might even make me start to think of David in a positive light again. I was scared of that. All I could do was what came naturally. I broke down. No matter what answer I thought of, all it lead to was more pain. I couldn't cope.

I was surprised as she came over and cuddled me. She could not be as cruel and heartless as David can. She was still holding me a few minutes when mum came in. Before Angela left, she cupped my face with her hand and forced me to look into her eyes. With tears and a tenderness I have hardly seen before, she said “Nathan, remember that you are loved by many in this world. Even though it may not always seem like it, you are a very special guy and a lot of people really love you OK?”. With that, she smiled, gave me a kiss on the forehead, smiled again and then left.

I never returned her smile.

The hardest visit came shortly after I got home, late that afternoon. I was still feeling quite tired and weak, so headed up to my room to sleep. I had not been lying down long when Bob arrived. I heard Mum tell him that he should go home and not come back, but I couldn't stand to be alone any more. I finally began to understand my dreams. The desolate place I had been in while I was in hospital was my own heart. It was burnt and destroyed, and all but dead. I decided it was time for some life and that Bob would be a good place to start. I called to Mum.

By the time she came up to me, Bob had gone home. I asked her to call him and ask him to come over to see me. He was there a few seconds later.

When he got to my door he didn't come any closer. He just stood there, looking at the floor. For a while he said nothing, then quietly said that he was sorry. I told him to come over to the bed. Again, he came to the side of the bed and just stood there, looking at the floor. I reached out and grabbed a hand and pulled him towards me, while patting the space on the blankets beside me. After some hesitation he got on the bed and lay down, facing me but not touching me at all. I had to move to get us close enough to put an arm around him.

As we lay together, Bob started to cry. He told me about how I was his best friend, and sometimes even his only friend. He told me that he really cared about David, but loved me a lot more. He talked about how upset he was that his two best friends were having problems (he always tries to protect his friends from hurting each other), and he talked about how hurt he was to lose my friendship, and then how scared he was when he heard that he could lose me forever.

I did the only thing that I could think of. I started to stroke his cheek as David had done for me many times before. It worked.. After a while Bob settled, and then fell asleep. I was soon asleep beside him.

As I drifted off, I wondered about if I should talk to David again or not. He had really hurt me, but maybe this was all I had seen him doing with Peter after all. Maybe it wasn't what I thought.

But can I face him again?.

[Scared you eh? You thought I wasn't going to write any more!. I'm sorry, dear readers, but leaving the last chapter as it was without even a comment was a deliberate thing on my part to add to the story. I already had much of this chapter planned out before I finished that one. In fact, I started thinking about this chapter when I wrote parts of P2 C2.

It's been made all the more real to me as, less than a half an hour before I submitted this chapter, I returned home from preventing a potential suicide of a close friend. Readers, please do not ever put your friends through something like this, no matter what life brings your way. There is someone in this world who really cares about you, and will do all that they can to help you. Don't ever put them through that please! Don't even threaten it! I have lost some good friends to suicide who would still be around today if they had just talked to someone, let them know that they were having problems, and let someone help. Sometimes all it needs is to talk to someone for a little while and the feelings pass. So please, if you feel like it's the only way out, talk to someone else and see what they can do to help you.

To those who have helped with this, including those at Nifty, you have my thanks. And to my extra special person other than the guy that inspired Nathan – I want it on public record how much you mean to me – I love you far more than even my own words could ever say, and I write that here to be recorded as long as Nifty lasts - TC].