This story full of Love is my gift to YOU.


Chapter 7. Eating slippers...

    We entered the kitchen, still laughing and trying to bump into each other.
Being barefooted, I was very happy to have at least some carpeting on the floor.
Little Harry let go of me and looked around critically, with a pensive look on his face as if he tried to remember where everything was.
He went to the refrigerator, opened it, and peeked inside.
    He closed its door, disappointedly shaking his head:

    "Your fridge is bigger than Jack's, but there's almost nothing in it. What do you have for breakfast?"

    "Well, until yesterday, it was only me in the house, and I didn't know you were going to live here. However, I think there's some cereal in one of the cabinets, and there's still some milk."

    "I promised to teach you how to cook properly, so let's start right now. I saw a couple of eggs, but do you have any tomatoes?"

    "Yes, I do have some eggs; and no, there are no tomatoes."

    "Do you have any vegetables, beans, or maybe potatoes?"

    "I’m not sure... Why don't you have a look for yourself?"


    Little Harry's small frame almost disappeared into the huge refrigerator, while he started to rummage around.
Soon, he showed up again, carrying all the eggs, a small leek, two little onions, and a clove of garlic.
    He put them onto the kitchen table, and expectantly grinned at me:

    "Do you have some curry or other spices?"

    "I don’t know. Maybe, there is some in the cabinets over the sideboard."

    He took a chair, climbed onto the sideboard, and carefully inspected all the cabinets.
Inwardly, I laughed at the funny sight of such a small and still naked savage, rummaging everywhere.
Soon, he found small tins of curry and black pepper, a container of salt, and a bottle of hot sauce.
He put them onto the sideboard, and jumped down onto the floor without any help.
    He picked up the spices, set them on the kitchen table, and again grinned at me:

    "Do you have some slippers?"

    "What? I hope we are not going to eat SLIPPERS..."

    The little imp started to shriek with laughter, almost hiccupping:

    "No, silly, I'm not THAT hungry! I want to get some herbs from my garden in the backyard, but the ground is still too dewed."

    I offered him my own slippers from the hallway closet, feeling curious about what he would do next.

    He put his small feet into them and tried to walk a couple of steps.
Of course, he almost tripped over his own legs, and promptly started to laugh again.
He tried to show me a sour face, but his happiness won and he surprised me with a quick cuddle.
    Next, he shuffled towards the backdoor, but stopped just in time:

    "Where are your keys? The door is still locked..."

    "You know where you put them. My trousers are still upstairs."

    "Oh yeah."

    He kicked my too big slippers off and raced to my bedroom.
Within ten seconds, he was back with my keys, and unlocked the backdoor.
He put the keys onto the kitchen table, and stepped into my huge slippers again.
Walking carefully, he shuffled into the backyard, still having fun trying not to stumble.

    I followed him through the open door, suddenly feeling very aware of being clad only in my briefs.
What would happen, if one of our curious neighbors saw me, being almost naked like this?
Or, maybe even worse, would see my completely naked little savage, being clad only in his birthday suit?
Wouldn't they be VERY suspicious about what I was doing to such a small and vulnerable child?

    Little Harry seemed to be oblivious of the effect he might have on any nosy neighbors.
He shuffled to a corner of the backyard, squatted down, and started to inspect his herbs.
Obviously, this was HIS abundantly flowering little garden, carefully marked out by a couple of white cobblestones.

    I remembered I had seen it before, unintentionally stumbling over a few stones and wondering about who had put it here.
Now, I saw that he had put the fallen stones upright again!
Had he been angry with me, for damaging his little property?

    After a moment, he returned, again walking carefully and trying not to trip over the huge slippers.
He carried some green leaves, a couple of yellow thingies, sort of a small brown carrot, and a little reddish pod.
    Proudly, he showed them to me, enthusiastically explaining:

    "These are from my herbs garden, with all sorts of spicy plants in it. Jack and I laid it out after I returned from the hospital; with the help of my herbal learning book.
"Of course, I will teach you how to use them..."

    Until now, I had been convinced that my little boy would be way too young to be a 'real' cook...
However, after watching him, I had to admit that I was rather impressed.
He really seemed to know what he was doing!
What kind of a surprise would this little imp pop up next?

    We went back to the kitchen, and I closed the backdoor.
Little Harry put all the herbs into the sink, and carefully washed them until they were spotlessly clean.
He dried them, took them to the kitchen table, and spread them out next to the other things.
    Now, he started to look in all the drawers, but couldn't find what he needed:

    "Do you have a sharp kitchen knife and a cutting board, to slice my herbs?"

    "What? Are you sure you know how to handle a sharp kitchen knife? At your age, MY parents would never allow me to use one!"

    "How come all the grown-ups I cook for, ask me the same questions? Maybe, I am only a little cookie, but I KNOW what I am doing."

    I was a bit wary about letting such a small boy handle a huge kitchen knife...
What would happen if he accidentally sliced his little fingers, together with his herbs?
Wouldn't everybody blame ME for it, accusing me of not properly looking after him?
I also didn't want to find any little boy meat in my breakfast.
Had Jack ever allowed him to use such a knife, or would this be his first time?

    After hesitating, I decided to follow my heart and trust my little soul mate.
He told me he knew what he was doing, and he acted as if he was absolutely sure about himself.
So far, he had not disappointed me, at least not yet...

    I got my old cutting board and a frequently used but very sharp kitchen knife from a box on the sideboard.
Still having some doubt, I put them onto the kitchen table and stepped back.
Of course, I also decided to keep a very close eye on him, in case something went wrong.
Where had I put my, fortunately still unused, first aid kit...

    A moment later, I stared at his ministrations wide-eyed and with growing amazement!
I gasped from the unexpected show, while my chin almost dropped to the floor.
Never before had I seen such a small boy handle an enormous kitchen knife with such an amazing skill.
Of course, he was putting on a little show as well, but he absolutely DID know what he was doing!

    Little Harry bundled the herbs with his little fingers, and adeptly chopped them into small pieces at an astonishing speed.
Looking up at me with a big smile on his face, he used the blade of the knife to scoop the pieces into a cup.
He frittered the onions, sliced part of the leek, and diced the carrot and the small pod, again working at lightning speed.
He skillfully smashed the garlic, adeptly using his small fists to punch the blade of the enormous knife.
He scooped everything into the cup, and added salt, pepper, curry, a few drops of hot sauce, and some milk.

    Now, he started to mix everything carefully, this time using his fingers and the tip of the knife.
He tasted his mixture, shook his head, and carefully added a little bit more salt and some more curry.
Again, he tasted the mixture, sniffed at it, and nodded.
    Without looking up, and still mixing some more, he asked me:

    "Could you please take a pan, put two small spoons of butter in it, and heat it?"

    I did as I was told; and put a pan on the electric cook top, obediently adding two spoonfuls of butter.
Suddenly, I felt proud to be allowed to be the kitchen help of such a skilled chef.
What a truly amazing child!
He certainly would be able to teach me quite a lot about cooking.
Would I ever be able to equal his amazing skills?

    Little Harry dumped the cutting board and the knife into the sink, and took a spatula from the drawer.
Next, he dragged one of the folding chairs towards the electric cook top.
He climbed onto the chair, looked in the pan, and asked me:

    "Could you hand me the eggs, please, one at a time?"

    I took the eggs from the table and handed them to my little cook; one by one, as he had asked.
Skillfully, he broke them, by tapping them against the rim of the pan, without crumbling the shells or making a mess.
Wow! That was what I tried to do myself all the time, but never succeeded.
I was always fishing shattered shells out of my egg mixture...

    Finally, I threw the empty shells into the trash, and handed my skilled cook his cup of herbs mixture.
He poured the cup’s contents into the sputtering eggs, and started to scramble them.
In the meantime, I went to the table to prepare some toast and butter the slices.

    Slowly, a wonderful aroma started to fill the kitchen, caressing my nostrils and making my stomach grumble aloud.
This certainly smelled as if my little cookie was preparing something very special!
    He grinned at me, and cheerfully hopped off his chair:

    "Could you put the toast onto our plates now? My scrambled eggs are ready."

    Again, I did as I was told, almost feeling respectful.
I took two plates from a cupboard, some cutlery from a drawer, and placed them onto the kitchen table.
Both of us sat down, took some toast, and scooped some greenish looking scrambled eggs onto our plates.
I took my first bite, and tasted...

    I felt like I was in heaven, and looked at my skilled little cookie in awe!
Never before had I ever tasted anything this delicious.
These scrambled eggs 'a la little Harry' tasted absolutely exquisite.
My little boy was a VERY skilled cook!
I ruffled his hair, and told him he was a wonderful cook and that I was jealous of his special skills.
He beamed with pride, and gleefully took the next piece of toast and some more egg.

    Trying to outdo each other, we started to devour our tasty meal, fighting for the last piece of toast and carefully scraping the pan for the last crumbs.
Little Harry burped loudly, and I tried to join him by making the same noise.
He looked at me with a stern face, and both of us started to laugh at the same time.
It felt good, to act like a little boy again and be a bit mischievous...

    Working closely together, we washed the dishes and dried everything.
I put the cutlery away into the drawers, while little Harry climbed onto the sideboard and put the spices away.
Both of us washed our hands in the kitchen sink, and dried them using the same towel.

    Suddenly, little Harry pushed me backwards onto one of the folding chairs and climbed onto my lap.
He fell backwards against my chest, and heaved a deep sigh of content.
I laughed at his forwardness, but threw my arms around his small body and held him close.
Obviously, he needed another morning cuddle!
I kissed the top of his head, and he squeezed my arms to let me know he enjoyed my friendship.

    Strangely, I totally forgot I was clad in only my briefs, and my little boy was still naked.
I had never thought I would be used to being sort of a naturist this fast...
Little Harry even seemed to be a natural naturist.
Perhaps, his parents had always allowed him to walk around like this?

    I thought now would be a good time to ask him a few questions.
Ultimately, I didn't know anything about him or about his past.
I only knew he was of Gypsy origin, around eight years old, and had been in a caravan fire two years ago...
    I tickled his ribs to make him laugh, and asked him something to boost his ego:

    "How did you become such a skilled cook?"

    "Strangely, I don't know where it comes from! I seem to have a gift, but I don't remember why that is. The fire seems to have burnt away all the memories from my youth.
"The doctors told me my brain tried to shut down the pain; but, at the same time, it also shut down all my memories.
"During the first days in the hospital, I could hardly remember my own name! Since then, some memories are coming back.
"Now, I can vaguely remember our huge mountains with glowing tops, enclosing an enormous circle of caravans around a campfire...
"Every day, all our children went into the surrounding woods, to catch wild animals and roast them over the campfire. I am sure I always collected lots of nicely smelling herbs to spice them.
"I also remember being called 'little prince' or 'cookie', but I don't remember why.
"I also think I was allowed to enter our huge forest all on my own, because I was a gifted trapper, but I'm not really sure...
"Maybe, I'm only remembering a beautiful dream I once had."

    He fell silent, wiped his eyes, and stared into space.
Obviously, he tried to remember his beautiful dream, but felt disappointed because he couldn't...
I cradled him some more, slowly, being careful not to interrupt his train of thoughts.
As a therapist, I was relatively sure that, in time, all his memories would return.
We only had to be patient, until something unexpected triggered them and they returned.

    After some time, little Harry heaved a deep sigh, and went on:

    "Once, when I was in the hospital for my next operation, Jack bought me an herbal learning book, because I was bored and had asked him about using spices.
"I read it, and immediately recognized many plants. I knew how they tasted and how I could use them in our food, but I didn't understand where my knowledge came from.
"After I was back home, Jack and I bought several plants, cuttings, and seeds; and we set up my herbs garden in our backyard, surrounding it with painted cobblestones.
"Next, we started to experiment with my herbs. Now and then, the food tasted awfully yucky, and we had to throw it away and start over again. At other times, it worked out great, like now."

    Suddenly, little Harry sat upright, tilting his head as if he listened for something or someone...
It looked as if he was surprised, to hear or sense something he didn't expect.
    A broad smile lit up his beaming face, while he exclaimed:

    "Here comes John!"

    He opened my arms, slid off my lap, and went to the front door.
Ten seconds later, the doorbell rang, loudly reverberating through the hallway.
I heard my naked little savage joyfully unlock the front door and open it.
Then, John's pleasant voice enthusiastically greeted his little brother!

    How the heck did my little soul mate know that John was going to pay us a visit, this early in the morning?
Could my gifted boy be a clairvoyant as well?
This was eerie.
Did he have any MORE surprises in store?

    What should I do now, wearing only my briefs?
Should I hurry upstairs and don some more clothes, before John's innocent eyes caught my nudity?
Unfortunately, there wasn't enough time to run through the hallway, without being seen and making a fool of myself...
I was trapped in my kitchen, and could only hope for the best...

    Thinking fast, I tried to position myself strategically at the back of the kitchen table.
There, I hid my briefs behind one of the folding chairs, and waited...
What would John think of me, when he saw me in this indecent state?
Would he be shocked, and run away to tell his mother about my 'improper behavior'?

    Two excited boys tumbled into the kitchen, obviously being happy to see each other.
John looked around, and sniffed the air approvingly.
    He embraced his little brother with pride in his eyes:

    "It smells wonderful here! I think you cooked one of your famous breakfasts. Did you leave anything for me?"

    Next, he acknowledged my presence, smiling broadly and looking genuinely happy to see me.
He rounded the table, and came straight up to me.
Enthusiastically, he put his arms around my naked waist and happily kissed my blushing cheek.
He didn't seem to be surprised at all, as if being clad in only briefs were quite normal to him...
    He cuddled up against me, showing me a beaming face:

    "Good morning, sir. Harry is a brilliant cook, isn't he? I am sure that, one day, he will be famous!"

    Then, he left me and went back to little Harry:

    "Come on; let's hit the shower. Are you joining us, sir?"

    He draped his arms around little Harry and tenderly pulled him close.
Little Harry melted into him, and two pairs of beaming eyes expectantly looked up at me...

    What should I do now, still feeling ashamed of being almost naked?
I felt VERY uneasy with this situation, and didn't know how I could escape from it.
Why had I listened to little Harry, instead of ignoring his objections and properly dress myself first?
What would happen, if John told his parents about me, being clad like this?
They would immediately forbid John to visit me ever again!

    Besides, did my boys really expect me to join them in the shower?
That would be VERY improper, and the last thing I ever wanted to do!
They weren't related to me, and I knew how our over prudish society would think about this.
Everybody would see it as 'seducing two innocent victims', even when they wanted it themselves...

    I felt more and more uneasy with my situation, and started to protest:

    "Sorry, but I don't think that would be a good idea. Maybe, I even shouldn't..."

    Suddenly, little Harry left John's arms and interrupted me:

    "Come on, don't spoil the fun. Let's go upstairs and shower together."

    Determinedly, the little imp took my hand, telling John:

    "He is still a bit shy, because his parents taught him the same bullshit your dad did to you, about being ashamed of your own body.
"He still has to learn that all boys are the same, maybe except for some hair, and that all of us will get stiffies from time to time.
"Now, take his other hand, and help me!"

    John started to laugh, went to my other side, and firmly took my other hand.
Working together, both boys dragged me out of the kitchen and towards the stairs...

    At first, I felt overwhelmed by their pushing, and didn't know what I should do.
Would they really force me to join them in the shower?
Then, I decided to let them have their innocent fun, at least for now.
I would certainly be strong enough to escape, in case they went too far!
I was also a bit curious about how far they dared go...

    In front of the stairs, little Harry snickered, having little fun lights in his eyes:

    "Can you walk on your own now, or do we have to carry you upstairs?"

    Yeah, well... Of course, I HAD to go upstairs, to put on my clothes!
Feeling like a lamb, heading for the slaughter, I dragged myself up the stairs.
John and little Harry followed me at a short distance; giggling and pushing each other.

    All the time, I was very aware of them, looking up at my bare legs and scarcely hidden bum.
I felt hot with shame, while I kept on walking as if this were my daily habit...
Why was this so difficult for me?
Why did I feel so terribly uneasy when somebody else could see certain parts of my body?  
Obviously, the boys did not seem to have any problems with it, so why did I?
Had my strict upbringing hindered me like this, or was it due to what our society keeps telling us about being 'indecent'?
Was I, at this very moment, damaging these two innocent victims for the remainder of their lives, as society tries to tell us in all its wisdom?
Had I now transformed into one of those filthy child molesters; being the lowest scum on earth?
As a therapist, I KNEW that this was total nonsense, but I was also sure that nobody would ever listen to my excuses...

    I continued to drag myself upstairs, forcefully trying to will down my blushing.
After I finally reached the hallway, I went straight to my bedroom and snatched my clothes from the chair.
Sitting down on a corner of my bed, I started to put them on, but soon fell silent.
My head was in turmoil, and I couldn't think straight any more...

    I remembered how my own parents always taught us to dress properly first, before walking around in the house.
My little brother and I had never seen them naked, nor they us, once we were big enough to wash ourselves.
Later, as a psychotherapist, I had to deal with many so-called 'abused' or 'molested' children.
Unfortunately, many of them had really been abused, being severely traumatized because of the terrible things they had been forced to endure.

    However, quite a lot of them had only been playing with somebody else's 'private parts'; in mutual consent, willingly, and having lots of fun...
They HAD been severely traumatized, but AFTERWARDS, because of the harsh and condemning reactions of their parents, their wardens, or our so over-prudish Big Brother society!
In my eyes, our society had cruelly victimized these children, in the name of 'protecting' them...
'Protecting' them, but against what...

    During all those years, I had never seen any child traumatized, or even upset, just by seeing or touching a naked grown-up.
They had always been traumatized or frightened AFTER the fun, by the extravagant reactions of their over-prudish and shameful educators.
Then, afterwards, merely seeing some nudity could trigger their fears again, of having to undergo the same frightening treatment...

    Why didn't our society THINK some more; instead of blindly chasing after so-called child molesters?
You can't get a better harvest by rooting out all the weeds!
You will have to nurture the highly valuable vegetation; and forget about the few nasty weeds.
They aren't important!
Unfortunately, the weeders are ruling our world...


    "Sir? Uncle Harry? Are you feeling well?"

    Slowly, I woke up from my sad train of thoughts.
I looked up, and stared into the concerned faces of John and little Harry, both of them looking worried.
They seemed to feel relieved, now that I reacted to them and started to smile again...
   Tentatively, John put a warm hand onto my still naked shoulder and asked:

     "Is it our fault? We were only teasing you, and didn't really mean it."

    "No, John, none of this is your fault. It is the fault of our over-prudish society, making me frightened about the consequences of being almost naked where you can see me.
"If you ever tell this to anybody else, the authorities could put me into jail for a very long time, accusing me of displaying 'indecent behavior' in front of minors..."

    "Yes, I know... But, Harry and I promise that we will never blabber about what you and we do in private.
"We never told anybody about Jack either, and he was never in any jail. You can absolutely trust us!"

    "Yeah, well... I am sure I can trust you; but I am still afraid, and not going to take any risks. Now, go take your shower; and I will wait downstairs until you are done."

    "But... Jack always joined us in the shower, and together we had lots of fun. Why do you have to behave so prudish? You are no fun at all!"

    "I am not Jack, and I am not sure whether he did the right thing or not. He could have been in a lot of trouble, if anybody ever found out about it...
"Sorry, but this is still too difficult for me! My parents raised me very old-fashioned, and my wife and I even didn't join the shower with our own daughters.
"I am NOT going to take any risks! Both of you are going to shower first, and I will wait for you and take my own shower after you are finished and dressed.
"Just read what the newspapers are telling us every day about so-called 'child molesters', luring innocent children into doing improper things. I don't want to be one of them..."
    John and little Harry looked at each other, as if they were deliberating in silence...
Then, both of them started to smile at the same time; but I had no idea why that was.
    John turned back to me, and told me:

    "Okay, but you will have to adjust the warm water tap for us. That thing is too difficult to handle, because we are only little boys and don't know how it works..."

    Now, I was in doubt.
Was John serious about not knowing how to handle a warm water tap, for such a clever boy?
Or, was he luring me into something?
I looked at him and at little Harry, but both of them seemed to be sincere about it and smiled back at me with open faces.
Well, okay...
Helping them, by adjusting the seemingly too difficult water tap, did sound innocent enough.

    I rose from my bed; and put the clothes I still had in my hand, back onto the chair.
Next, I followed the boys towards the bathroom; planning to help them out and then immediately leave them alone to get dressed.

    Jack, the former owner of my house, had cleverly rebuilt a small spare room into a luxuriously looking bathroom.
The room had a generous shower enclosure; and enough room left for a washing machine, a dryer, and a huge chest of drawers.
I followed the boys into the bathroom, to have a look at the too difficult tap...

    Within a split second, John had shucked all his clothes and thrown them onto the chest of drawers.
He offered me a broad smile, and joined little Harry who was already in the shower stall.
Obviously, John wasn't shy at all about showing his naked body in my presence...
Now, he and little Harry were standing side by side, both of them naked, having their arms around each other's shoulders.
They were seemingly patiently waiting for me to adjust the warm water tap.
Only, this time, they furtively started to snicker and push each other...
What were they up to?

    I looked at what had to be the water tap, but I had never seen such a strange thing before.
It looked like a short silver pipe, having one knob at each end, and a water connection in the middle.
One of the knobs showed several dots with temperature signs on them, and the other knob only had an arrow on it.
I stepped into the shower stall and knelt down, to have a better look at it...

    Suddenly, I started to snicker, when I found out what the wicked thing was.
These little devils! They WERE pulling my leg!
They had just been too cunning.
This was a modern THERMOSTATIC tap, and they knew it!
Even the smallest child would be able to handle this tap easily, without any risk of getting burnt or frozen...

    They had lured me into the shower stall on purpose.
Obviously, they had planned this, working together, without using any words...
Were they really able to read each other's thoughts?

    I turned around, planning to lecture them sternly about their naughtiness.
Inwardly, I admired their clever inventiveness, but I tried to look angry...
Within a second, I couldn't keep a straight face any more, and started to laugh at the funny sight.
Both boys had broad smiles on their faces, looking up at me expectantly.
    John threw his arms around my waist, leaned into me, and snickered:

    "Now that you have seen both of us naked, you don't have to be so shy anymore. We want you to wash our hair, because we are still little boys.
"Of course, you may keep your briefs on, to prevent our innocent eyes from seeing your pride and joy."

    I started to bellow with laughter, and I couldn't help it.
Again, I felt happy to have both boys around, with their sunny moods and playful use of words.
I started to love my clever and joyful friends more and more!
I grabbed both boys and pulled them into a big hug.
Immediately, they leaned into me and put their smaller arms around my waist and each other.
We stayed in our group hug for quite some time, enjoying our company and mutual love and warmth.

    At last, we disentangled from each other; and little Harry grinned and turned on the too difficult thermostatic water tap without any problem.
John and I yelped; and jumped out of the way to avoid the initial cold-water stream.
Impatiently, we waited until the water would be warm enough.
Then, all three of us started to wrestle, trying to have the best place under the nicely warmed water.
I felt like a little boy myself, and basked in the sudden joy.
Both boys totally accepted me without any restrictions, as being one of them.
Soon, all three of us were giggling and pushing each other, like three little children having the fun of their lives.

    For the first time since Joshie's death, I was able to feel like a child again, and I loved the wonderful experience!
Finally, I understood what therapists really intended, when they told their clients to 'comfort their inner child'...
    Maybe, this was what the Bible had been intending, by offering us the wise advice:

    'Unless you become like little children, you shall not enter the kingdom of heaven.'

    We shampooed each other's hair and carefully rinsed it, while protecting each other's eyes with our hands.
We lathered, washed, and rinsed the soap off each other.
We teased each other, group-cuddled again with six arms around each other, and everything we did felt totally NORMAL.

    Never before had my Inner Child enjoyed a shower so much, and both boys seemed to have the same amount of fun.

    Could our society be WRONG with its assumptions about 'molesting' and 'displaying indecent behavior' between bathing children and grown-ups?
Could it be that the REAL, and absolutely needed, 'protection from predators', had been overturned into 'throwing away the child with the dirty wash'?
I was absolutely sure, even as a trained therapist, that both showering kids weren't being harmed in ANY way!
Unless our meddlesome society would interfere with our harmless fun, and force the boys into feeling ashamed of what they were doing...

    Being spotlessly clean, we left our shower; and little Harry shut the difficult water tap off without any problem.
We dried each other, but all of us had to use the only bath towel I had been able to find so far.
Soon, our towel was soaked, and we had to wring it out a couple of times to be able to use it some more.
Of course, we were still wet; but we had lots of fun!

    I stripped my wet briefs off, threw them into the hamper, and looked in the chest of drawers for dry underwear.
This time, I wasn't afraid at all that they would look at my now unclad bum...
I was right. They weren't interested.
Why should they be?

    We stepped out of the bathroom, and started to laugh at each other:

    "You look like a shriveled prune."

    "Oh yeah? You look like a wrinkled pig."

    "I think you look more like a drowned rat."

    "Grrrrr. I will GET you for that!"

    Both boys chased each other towards my bedroom, followed by old me at a bit slower pace.
Little Harry bolted into the room, threw himself onto my waterbed, and immediately scrambled upright.
    He started to jump up and down the wobbling bed with beaming eyes, shouting:

    "Look, John, we have a WATERBED, and it can carry two elephants without trouble!"

    John threw himself onto the bed, next to little Harry, and teasingly tried to tackle him by catching his foot.
Little Harry grinned and attacked him back, by jumping onto his back and trying to pin him down.
However, John was too strong for him, and easily threw little Harry towards the other side of the wobbling bed.
Both of them started to jump up and down, trying to touch the ceiling.
They had lots of fun, enthusiastically cheering and now and then playfully trying to push each other off the bed.

    I sat down onto a chair, watching their playful antics.
Inwardly, I chuckled at the funny sight of my two naked savages, trying to outdo each other.
They weren't shy at all, so why should I be?
Only our society's crazy beliefs kept me from joining them...

    At last, they were too tired to go on, and decided to have a break.
Panting heavily, they let themselves slump down onto the still wobbling bed.
    Both of them looked at me expectantly, and John teased me:

    "Aren't you going to join us? Again, you are no fun."

    Of course, I wanted to prove to them that I could be more fun than they expected!
I went to my waterbed; and let myself fall down next to them, making them lift off for a moment because of the wobbling water.
Immediately, both boys crawled onto my stomach and held on to me, playfully competing for the best place...
That felt good!
I put my arms around them and tenderly pulled them close.
Feeling very content, I savored this special moment of loving togetherness.
I started to love both boys more and more, feeling rich to be the Big Friend of my little soul mate and of my thirteen-year-old special friend.

    Little Harry tilted his head and kissed my cheek; immediately followed by John's more forceful kisses.
Both of them slumped down onto my chest, trying to melt into me as deeply as they could.
Obviously, they used to do this with Jack as well...
We all felt totally at peace with each other, being absolutely sure we would be close friends for the remainder of our lives!
Nothing would ever be able to separate us from each other; not even our so mistrustful society...

    After some time, all of us drifted into a deep slumber.
I was vaguely aware of a huge wave of love engulfing us, while everything around us felt warm and peaceful.
A bright light started to shine around me, seemingly coming from everywhere...
I looked up; and saw Jack, looking at me with a friendly and understanding smile on his face.
    He lifted his hand in a greeting gesture, and told me:

    "Thank you, for having so much fun. I watched you, together with a couple of other spirit friends, and we all enjoyed your playful antics very much.
"Please, never again doubt what your heart tells you! Fortunately, you did the right things; and, because of that, all of you are now in an accelerated process of learning.
"Your youngest boy is already coming out of his shell and leaving his fears behind. Soon, he will start to remember his youth, and you will have to guide and help him.
"Our oldest boy is a loyal friend, with a big heart full of love. Soon, you will be asked to take care of him, at least for a while, so be prepared.
"Now, I am leaving you, so that you can wake up from your induced trance. In time, I will be back and talk some more..."

    I didn't WANT to wake up!
This 'induced trance' felt so good, so full of love and peace; that I wanted to bask in it some more!
Besides, would Jack allow me to ask him any questions?
    Hesitantly, I asked Jack in my mind:

    "May I ask you a question, Jack?"

    "Look..." Jack immediately answered; already anticipating my question and slowly fading away.

    In his place, he showed me a vision of little Harry, in the possible future.
My little soul mate was only slightly older, but I almost didn't recognize him.
This time, he had a nice and smooth face, a funny pug nose, a cheerful mouth with lips that only hinted at something artificial, and normal ears.
His chest and belly showed only faintly visible scars, his hips and legs had only a few colored marks, and he had a small but very normal looking pecker.

    Jack's voice told me, still sounding in my head:

    "This is what you will be able to do for your son, but don't be too impatient. Just wait until the right moment shows up..."

    The bright light slowly faded away, while I started to wake up with a wonderful feeling.
Jack had called little Harry, 'your son', and I almost started to cry from happiness.
I so wished Jack was right!
Finally, I knew what Jack's intention had been, when he told me to 'spend everything I had' on my little soul mate...

    Yes, he could count on me. I would be there!
I would do everything I could, to help my boy get a normal looking face and body.
Besides, I didn't need to be 'royally rewarded', for spending all my money on him...
Seeing my boy happy would be all the reward I needed!



Thank you again, for all your wonderful and stimulating emails!
I will still try to answer them all; unless I am getting too many of them.
Here are a few (maybe abbreviated) excerpts:

    I have been reading your story for a few months now. And i have to say I love it. i look forward to reading the next part. I have cryed and laughed, sometimes at the same time. the love you show in your storys shines through. thank you very much for puting the love on my computer. though I never meat you, you must be a wonderfull person. and look forward to all you put to pin.THANK YOU AGAIN. MAY THE LOVE IN YOUR HART NEVER FADE.

    Thank you so much for sharing your talent with us. The story is so delightful and I await each posting with joy. Again we are so delighted that you have taken the time to share the story with us.If you have not guessed by now........I am a fan.

    I guess emotional rollercoaster is a good description, or maybe I'm just an emotional mess, but I can just cry my eyes out reading this, and I don't even really know why...

Did you enjoy my story? Then, please, send me an email!:

Or, have a look at my site, to read all my stories and buy the book:

Thank you very much in advance, for your stimulations to go on!

Harry AnderS, writer of 'books with a message'