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Earth, As it is in Heaven
By:  Roman Genesis

Chapter 15
From Heaven to Hell

     If life was ever going to have any semblance to normality for Sebastian and I, I think we had reached it.  We had finally fallen into a sort of pattern, and although it wasn't always pretty, it was a pattern nonetheless.

     We'd go to school, I'd go to practice, I'd go to work, I'd play football, and then, and only then, did I actually get to do what I had set out to do.  I got to be with Sebastian.


     I put my arms around Sebastian and leaned against him as we sat by the small stream not ten feet away.  This spot deep in the snow covered woods had always been our special place and it seemed that these days when I thought about Sebastian I also thought of the rocks and the tiny scream of water that cut through our winter wonderland.  Our little piece of heaven, Sebastian called it.

     Sebastian reached down and put his hand in mine and I began running my fingertips across his as we sat in silence, listening to the ever present sounds of nature.  He was wearing the ring I had given to him and I twirled it around his finger gently.  "What are you thinking about?" I asked him after a while.  It was the question I wanted to ask anytime I saw him it seemed.  I never really knew what Sebastian was thinking and although it made me nervous and unsettled at times, I had grown to accept his unique ability to allude intrusion into his thoughts.

     "I was just thinking about life," he said.  I wasn't really sure how to respond to that so I just continued playing with his hand and watching the water move past us.  "Trevor," he said.

     I looked up at him and saw that he was staring off into space like usual.  "Yes?"

     "Do you ever wonder what the point of this is?"  At first I thought he was talking about our coming out to the whole town, but then I realized he was still talking about life.

     "I guess everyone does," I said.

     He was quiet for a while and we both watched as a bird flew down by the stream and began poking his head down into the freezing cold water and then lifting it back up and shaking until all of the water was off.  It seemed like a pointless activity to me, but I suppose animals only engage in activities that they deem as necessary.  When you stop and think about it though, humans do the same thing.

     "It all seems rather pointless to me at times," Sebastian said.  "I mean, our time here passes in the blink of an eye and when it's all over, we don't really have anything to show for it."

     "That's not true," I said.  "When it's all over, the people whose lives you have touched are still here and that counts for something."

     "Yes," he said, "but soon they're gone and eventually their memory and yours passes from this existence."  I sat up and looked at him.  He was still staring off into the woods, but he finally brought his gaze to look at me.

     "Is that really how you see this world?"

     "Can you blame me?"

     I shook my head as what he said really sank in.  Sebastian seemed so disillusioned with this life and it hurt that he still thought this way even now that he had me.  "Doesn't this count for something?" I said and leaned over and kissed him.

     He smiled as I pulled away.  "It counts for everything," he said.  "I don't know what I would have done without you Trevor."  I knew he meant it too.  I wrapped my arms tighter around him and he laid his head against my shoulder.  I was glad I made Sebastian so happy, but it was kind of scary knowing I was all he had left in this world.

     I was pulled from my reverie when I heard something coming through the woods up ahead and I almost let go of Sebastian.  I stopped though when I realized we had nothing to hide anymore.  I watched the woods ahead and saw a young boy come out into the opening across from us and stopped when he spotted us.  He looked to be about eight or nine, but I couldn't be sure from this distance.

     He watched us for a moment, but Sebastian and I remained motionless.  I guess he figured we weren't going to bother him, so he leaned down and began to gather up the snow using his tiny mittens as shovels.  I continued to watch him with interest and I noticed that Sebastian too was watching the curious young boy play in the snow.  It seemed odd to see such a young kid out here all by himself.  We were probably a quarter of a mile from anywhere.

     The boy soon had a huge mound of snow in front of him and he began making circular motions on top of it.  After a while he stopped and tried picking some up and packing it, but it kept falling apart on him.  I suddenly realized that he was trying to make a ball, probably to make a snow man or something.  He continued unsuccessfully to make the snow stick together and finally he stopped and just sat in the snow, looking down at the mound in front of him.  The snow was just too powdery to make a snow man today.

     He sat motionless, staring down at the snow for a long time.  I wasn't sure what he was doing, but finally, he lifted his fist in the air and brought it down on the mound, sending a cloud of snow flakes shooting into the air.  He lifted his other fist and pounded down again before he stood up and began to make his way back into the woods the same way he had come.

     "The beauty of defeat," Sebastian said.  I looked over at him and noticed that he was staring at the destroyed mound of snow with a sort of detached longing in his eye.  He looked so beautiful, but isolated in his world of hurt.

     I was beginning to feel a little sick to my stomach as Mrs. Jones pulled out more newspaper clippings about gay hate crimes.  She was discussing the very real need for tougher hate crime laws, especially how they pertained to gay victims.  I didn't know how much more of these "examples" I could take.  It was absolutely appalling how cruel and downright evil some people could be to do something like this.

     I looked around the room and saw that the other students that were here were feeling the same uneasiness that I was.  We sure did have more people here this week.  The turnout had more than doubled.  Granted, most of them were freshmen girls who had decided this would be something "cool" they could do together, but I saw that there were now four other guys here instead of just me, Sebastian, and Chad.

     Chad caught my glance and smiled to me.  I really was glad I had his support here.  Even if Mike and some of the other guys couldn't make it, it was nice to see that I had a representative from the team to show me that every single person there didn't hate me.  I noticed that the new boys that were here were keeping really quiet and to themselves.  I wondered if they too were gay or if they had just come to add support.  It was interesting to think about, but it really wasn't any of my business.

     Mrs. Jones finally began putting her news clippings away and said, "That's all for this week.  I'm really glad we had such a huge turnout.  Try and spread the word and hopefully we can double our membership again."  We all stood up and made our way out into the hallway.  I had Sebastian's hand in mine as usual and I found it odd that even some of the people who had been in the meeting were giving us quick glances.  I guess they couldn't really believe it until they saw it.  I couldn't blame them though.

     I noticed that the new boys especially were looking at Sebastian and I.  I pretty much knew now that they really were gay and they weren't just here to add support or check out the freshmen girls who were starting to come to the meetings in large numbers.  If anything, the boys were coming to check out Sebastian and I.  I laughed under my breath as I turned to Sebastian.

     "What's so funny?" Sebastian asked.

     "Nothing," I said, still grinning like an idiot.  "I'll see you after practice, okay?"

     "Okay," he said.  He leaned over and kissed me and then Chad and I began walking to the locker room as Sebastian and Shannon went out to the parking lot.

     "Pretty intense meeting," Chad said as we walked down the hallway side by side.

     "Yeah, I can't believe some of that stuff she had with her," I replied.  The conversation pretty much died after that and it suddenly hit me how much of strangers me and Chad really were.  We had almost nothing in common and I began wondering why he went out of his way to come to the meetings.  I quickly dismissed it and we walked on toward the locker room in silence.

     Vanessa picked up Mike and I from the front of the locker room and we were soon all on our way to the coffee shop.  I was happy that Mike had started hanging out with Sebastian, Shannon, and I.  It made my little group complete.  "How did practice go?" Sebastian asked from the front seat.

     "Cold," Mike said back.

     I nodded in agreement.  "Hell yeah.  It's getting colder and colder out there everyday it seems."  The rest of the way to the coffee shop Shannon and Sebastian engaged in their pointless banter about anything and everything and Mike and I talked about practice.  I guess our conversation would have sounded like banter to those who really weren't interested in football.  Like say, Sebastian and Shannon.

     We got to the coffee shop and we walked inside to see that the tiny place was really packed.  We made our way to the far end where there was only two tables left and we sat down at one of them.  This was only the second time Mike had come here with us, but I was glad to see he was starting to become a little bit more comfortable around Sebastian and I.  I wasn't sure if it was my imagination, but sometimes I thought Mike and Shannon were flirting with each other a little bit.

     "Who's going to go get the drinks?" I asked quickly so I wouldn't have to be the one to go.  Shannon and Mike quickly looked out the window so I looked at Sebastian.  "Looks like it's all you dude."

     He groaned jokingly and got up and went to get our drinks.  I guess he remembered what we had yesterday because he didn't ask any of us what we wanted.  "So," Shannon said, looking at Mike.  "What position do you play again?"

     "Fullback," Mike replied with a slight smile.  Shannon probably had no idea what a fullback does, but she just nodded her head and smiled back to Mike.  Yes, I'm pretty sure they were flirting with each other.

     Sebastian came back to the table with four drinks and passed them out.  "Wow, you remembered," I said.  He sat down next to me and got really close.  It couldn't get any better than this.  I put my cappuccino to my lips and tasted the hot sweetness on my tongue.  I looked over Sebastian and he looked back and smiled.  No matter how many times I saw his smile, it always send a tingling sensation up my spine.  Sebastian was so incredible.  I must have been the luckiest guy on the planet.  "I love you," I whispered.

     He slipped his hand into mine under the table and we just sat there listening to Mike and Shannon.  "And what did he say?" Mike asked.

     "Well," Shannon said.  "He didn't like the idea to much..."

     Mike began laughing really hard, cutting her off in mid sentence.  That was the Mike I knew.  "That's horrible," he said.  "Declining a pretty girl like you.  He should be ashamed of himself," he said playfully.

     Shannon blushed and looked out the window.  I looked over at Sebastian and he smiled back knowingly.  Mike and Shannon would make the cutest couple.  "Oh shit," Shannon suddenly muttered, still looking out the window.

     I sat up taller to look out the window that was overlooking the parking lot, but I couldn't see anything.  "What is it?" I asked.

     She turned around and looked at the entrance and we all followed her gaze.  The most incredible pain in the whole world filled the pit of my stomach as I saw Vanessa and Nathan walk into the coffee shop.  "Oh shit," Mike said.

     I quickly turned around and crouched over so they wouldn't see me.  Why did this have to happen to me, I thought.  Sometimes, I had the worst luck in the whole world.  Mike put his head down on his hand and whispered, "Oh god, they're coming this way."  I suddenly remembered that the only tables in the whole place that had been open were this one and the only right next to it.  We were screwed!

     I guess neither of them had seen us until they were sitting down at the next table over because Vanessa froze when she spotted us.  I looked back at her blankly, my heart racing in my chest.  I couldn't believe she could still make me feel like this even after we had broken up.  Finally she looked away and sat down by Nathan.  "Look who it is," Nathan said when he saw us.

     Nathan had been a little nicer to me at practice lately, but with Sebastian right next to me and Anthony not around, this opened up all sorts of outlets for him to be cruel.  He was probably the person on the team that hated me the most for being gay.  And now he was right here with Vanessa.  I had to get out of here.

     "Hey Nathan," Mike said.  He nodded to Vanessa when she looked at him.  "Vanessa."  She didn't respond, but instead looked around the room, probably to see if there was another table open.  No such luck though.

     "So, Trevor," Nathan said.  "Is this your boyfriend?" he asked, indicating Sebastian.  Sebastian was staring out the window and I could tell he wanted nothing more than to get out of here as much as I did.

     "Yes," I said.

     "Hi, I'm Nathan," he said, sticking his hand out for Sebastian to shake.  Sebastian didn't move though.  "Hey, I'm talking to you."

     "We were just leaving," I said standing up.  Everyone else at my table stood up and I glared down at Nathan.  I really couldn't figure out why he was being such an asshole to me.  Vanessa looked up at me and then scooted over closer to Nathan and put her arms around him.  I don't know why, but it really pissed me off.  They were obviously an item now, and she was doing everything in her power to display the fact.

     "I'll see you two at practice tomorrow," Nathan said, smiling ear to ear.  It was one of those looks that told you that you were on the receiving end of some joke.  I couldn't take it anymore.  I took a step toward him, but Mike put his arm up and held me back.  Nathan was on his feet instantly.

     "You want to hit me?" he said loudly.  Mike started leading me away and Sebastian and Shannon were right behind us.  "You better walk away fag," he yelled.  If there was ever a straw that broke the camel's back, that was it.  I spun around and lunged at Nathan, all rational gone.  I was going to beat this fucker's face in!

     I swung my fist and connected with the side of his face, sending him toppling over his chair.  Mike grabbed me and pulled me back.  I was furious.  Tears were streaming down my face and I began yelling, "I'll kill you."  Everyone in the coffee shop had become quiet and were watching us.  Nathan looked up at me from his spot on the ground.  He didn't look angry in the least.  If anything, he looked shocked that I would do such a thing.

     I finally turned around and let Mike guide me out of the coffee shop, but I was still blind with rage.  I wanted to smear Nathan's face all over the ground!  We were soon out in the parking lot and I saw Sebastian and Shannon standing by the car.  My eyes connected with Sebastian and I stopped in my tracks.  I can't even describe the look he was giving me.  There was shock and fear, but the look that he was giving me that scared me the most was a look of pity.  He knew something like this was coming and he thought that I would have been strong enough to walk away.

     I had failed him.