The following story is about the development of a fully consensual and loving relationship between a man and a pre-adolescent boy. At some point through the story's progression, there will be a graphic display of sexual acts between the man and the boy meant to show the natural progression and development of an intimate and caring relationship. If the topic of man/boy sex offends you, or if this material is illegal in your place or residence, or if you are under legal age, please leave now.
Any similarities between the characters in this story and any persons living and/or dead is purely a coincidence.
This story is protected under the nifty archives license agreement, and the author (me!) releases the right for nifty and nifty alone to post it on the internet. Please do not post this story anywhere else without my consent or knowledge.
Here is the next installment, after a wait that hopefully wasn't too painful. Please stay tuned for chapter 22, as it will be the concluding chapter of the story.
As always, please let me know your thoughts at firstname.lastname@example.org
The dull white glow of the florescent lighting gave the sparsely decorated hospital a cold, sterile feeling, providing no comfort in a place where it was most needed. The usual hustle and bustle of nurses, doctors, and patients seemed subdued for a weekday night, leaving the ICU waiting area quiet and empty, excepting himself and Josh's mother.
Steven gave a quick glance in her direction. She was still slouched over with her elbows on her knees, head down, and fingers rubbing her temples in large circular stokes. He knew she had a lot on her mind, and a great deal to think about. Though he had no idea what could be going on inside her head right now, he knew that her fundamental view on the world had been turned on it's side. At first he had despaired she might seek to bury everything that happened and refuse to cope with it, but she had proven him wrong. For better or worse, Josh had forced her to face herself, and question everything she believed.
The moment of truth had come at the police station. After the paramedics had arrived, both Steven and Josh's mother had been taken in for questioning. The police officers, the same ones who had been working the case against him, had been none too kind in the beginning. They let him speak his side of the story, though he could see from their faces they weren't taking it seriously. Truthfully, he couldn't blame them. He had a hard time himself believing that a boy barely eleven years old could rush into his mother's apartment with a gun in his hands, threatening to kill her. Hell, he had done more than threat, he had blown a hole in the wall the size of his mother's head.
Steven was convinced that the sole reason Elizabeth still drew breath was due to the size of the weapon Josh had chosen. If he had used a gun a little smaller, with not quite as much backlash, Steven may have walked into an entirely different scene.
It was unbelievable. Everything that had happened, that was happening. It all seemed so surreal. Sitting in the interrogation room, not for the first time that very same day, he had thought it was over. They said they had Elizabeth in another room, and were hearing her side of the story. For the longest time, that was all the information they would give him.
All she had to do was deny everything, call Steven's story the lie it sounded like, and place all the blame squarely on his shoulders. The police, no... everyone would more likely believe that he was the culprit through all of this, that he was the one to blame.
It was amazing really. In the blink of an eye, all the power Josh had wielded had vanished, as quickly as the gun could be taken out of his hands. But his mother's weapon, that could not be taken away so easily. Once again, she had the power, over both of their lives, as surely as Josh had it only a little awhile ago.
He couldn't help but remember the words Josh had spoken so calmly. "Once she's dead, everything will be okay."
Let me kill her. I want her to die....
For minutes he waited, minutes that seemed like hours. He couldn't help think that maybe Josh was right. What if he had let him pull the trigger? Would he have been there facing her judgment? Facing everyone's judgment?
"It seems your story checks out. From the sound of it, you may even have saved her life. At least... that's what she believes," the officer had said.
Steven was struck with utter disbelief when those words rang through the air. He had been so sure of the swift blade that would cut his life to pieces.
Maybe he shouldn't have been so surprised. The words Josh had spoken must have been rattling in her brain as well. For a mother to hear those words spoken by her own son... he couldn't even imagine what it had done to her.
He didn't know exactly how she had related the story to the police, but whatever she had said, it had eased all the pressure off of him. Only a few minutes later, they let him go, meeting Elizabeth in the waiting room. When the officer offered to take her to the hospital, she insisted that Steven come as well.
"Josh will want to see him," She had said. "He should be there when my son wakes up."
The whole trip to the hospital, she hadn't said another word, but she didn't need to. She had defended him. She had told the truth, even though the truth was devastating. Maybe removing the gun from Josh's hands hadn't taken away all his power after all. Maybe he had actually accomplished what he had set out to do, even if the outcome hadn't turned out how he intended.
The outcome.... Elizabeth's life may have been spared, but it had left Josh in critical condition. Even now, the boy was in the emergency room. Steven could only hope the wound wasn't fatal.
There had been a lot of blood. He hadn't the time to examine the wound, only wrap it as best he could, trying his best to staunch the blood flow. The ambulance had taken forever, and the boy's breathing only got more shallow. His only glimmer of hope had been when the paramedics said that his life signs were stable, and rushed him off as fast as they could.
Now all he could do was wait. Josh's life or death would now decide everything.
They both had been there over an hour now, still with not a single word exchanged. Steven replayed what happed at the police station over and over again in his mind, trying to decipher the reason for Elizabeth's actions. It was possible she believed he might be needed to calm her son when he woke up, to keep him from going crazy when he was still in critical condition, and then later tell him they could no longer see each other. It was possible she was just playing for time until Josh got better, then she would see that she had her way.
But Steven didn't think so. Not after all that she had seen, what she saw her son was capable of. He could see it in her eyes, he could see that Josh had shown her he couldn't be pushed around, subjected to her will, at the cost of everything he held dear. He had shown her he was willing to fight for what he wanted, even willing to kill. She knew now that she had completely lost control of him, and could have possibly lost much more. In all likely-hood, she was thinking how much she could gain back, if anything. Now, waiting in the hospital's Intensive Care Unit, She would be lucky to have back her son's life, let alone his love.
So Steven waited, choosing to remain silent. Anything that needed to be said, Josh had already said. Now, everything was up to her, and the outcome of Josh's surgery.
"Steven..." Elizabeth began, "I don't even know where to start."
Steven met her eyes, giving her a sympathetic smile, even though he felt none.
When she got no response, she lifted her head up. "The world is such a different place now, isn't it? So different from when I grew up. My childhood seemed so much simpler. I went to a small Catholic school, and went to church with my father every Sunday. We had a TV, but didn't use it much. We had a piano too, my late grandmothers, but no one knew how to play it. I'm sure Josh is the only one who has gotten any real use out of it since it was purchased by my grandfather 60 years ago. My grandmother gave it to me because I showed an interest in it, but my father refused to pay for lessons, even though I wanted them. Thought it would be a complete waste of his hard earned money, which was needed to put food on the table, clothes on our backs, and for the churches good cause."
Elizabeth straightened up a bit. "My father was a strict man, but he was a good man. After my mother passed away, he always tried to do right by us, to provide and make sure we lived good lives. He showed us, even when times were rough, that god was there for us, and would watch over us, as long as we remained faithful."
She let out a heavy breath. "That's all I ever wanted for my son. I wanted him to see that god loves him, and to have faith, so he can find true happiness in this life. But... I can see now Josh needs more. He's... he's so unlike how I was when I was his age. I didn't know a thing about the world, other than what my daddy told me, and had no idea what I really liked. The way Josh plays the piano, I can tell how passionate he feels about it. It's in everything he does... he puts his whole soul into it. I worry about him so much. The world is such an unforgiving place. It can take your dreams, and wring them out, like an overused washcloth," She shook her head. "There I go, sounding just like my father again."
She looked up at Steven, meeting his eyes again, though he could tell how hard it was for her. "I don't know why I'm telling you all of this. A few hours ago, you would have been the last person I would want to discuss my son with. Yet the way he reacted with you... it was as plain as day. Whether you deserve it or not, he loves you with all his heart. He's totally devoted to you, and he won't let anything stand between the two of you. I... I can only hope you realize what you have, what a precious gift Josh has given you. He hasn't been very open with anyone since his father left us, so long ago now. He's so vulnerable, so susceptible."
"I fear so much that.... No. I think Josh has shown us both how strong he is, how determined he is to get what he wants. I think if I tried to push him... it would just make things worse..." She looked around the room, tears beginning to well up in her eyes again. "Though I don't think they could get any worse than this."
She put a fist up to her mouth, trying to control her tears. "If my son lives through this... this horrible thing that's happened to him, I want you to be there for him. Promise me that you won't leave him. I... promise not to get in the way... not to interfere... but you must promise me you will stick with him, and not just throw him away when he doesn't tickle your fancy anymore."
Steven fought back his own tears, struggling to find an appropriate response. "Mrs. Chambers," Steven said as reverently as he could. "I promise I will be there for your son, no matter what. I won't leave. I will remain in Josh's life as long as he will have me. I'll be there for him in any way I can, though his high school, though his college, and through his adulthood. I love him dearly, and I will be there for him, in any capacity he needs me."
Elizabeth closed her eyes and nodded, leaning back into her chair. It looked somehow as if a great burden had been lifted off her shoulders. The battle she had been fighting so hard was over. Josh had won, even though the poor boy might never live to know it.
The wait seemed easier then, though Josh's condition still lay unknown. The future suddenly looked a lot better now, for both Josh and himself. A future with Josh included was more than he could have hoped for, and had feared was truly not possible.
Now it all seemed possible. Everything. Anything. Right there in the hospital waiting room, Steven swore, if Josh lived, then he would do everything in his power to make his dreams come true.
Steven was so entranced in his own thoughts, he hadn't heard the nurses call.
When Steven stood to follow Elizabeth, the nurse stopped him at the door.
"Sorry, the doctor wishes to discuss the boy's condition with his mother alone. You will have to wait."
Steven glanced at the nurse, then at Elizabeth with pleading eyes. She stood there for a moment inside the doorway, showing no sign of emotion.
Finally, she spoke. "This is the boy's godfather. He saved my life, and the life of my son. He deserves to hear what the doctor has to say."
The nurse studied her for a moment, then arched a brow at him. Finally she stepped into the doorway, allowing him to follow. "This way please."
With the nurse a few paces ahead of them, Steven opened his mouth for a word of thanks, but he stopped short. She looked at him with serious eyes. There wasn't forgiveness in those eyes. He was only fooling himself if he truly believed she would ever forgive him. Her glance made clear the pact they had, one that was not meant to be put into words.
I'm giving you this one chance, now don't go and prove I was right.