Disclaimer: This story involves, or is going to, characters from X-Men. The characters in this story have no relation to the REAL characters and/or the actors that play them in real life, and imply nothing of their sexual orientation, (No matter how much we would like it to) and any similarities are purely coincidental. All X-Men and other related elements are property of Marvel.
The rest of the car ride was spent in silence and me lost in thought.
Exactly how was I going to tell them, “Hey Mom and Pops, I just found out that I am a mutant because this kid Devin; from school, you know the big football player looking one, was going to kick the ever loving shit out of me and in the process of defending myself, I destroyed part of Bal Harbour. Okay, see you guys later,” and just leave.
In the process of thinking about all of this, Liz and I got to my house. I spoke,
“Were you driving like super fast the whole time?”
“I swear, I was going the speed limit the while way over.”
I looked at her questioningly, raising an eyebrow.
“Promise,” and she criss-crossed over her heart.
I looked at her face, then to the side. I began to fidget, my hands were on my lap and they were the only things that I could stare at.
“Liz, I… I… I don’t,” I was beginning to breathe heavily.
She reached over the center armrest with both arms wide open, “I know. I wouldn’t know what to say either.” By the end of the sentence we were in a tight embrace; she wasn’t just a friend, she was my sister. I began to think, she’s practically family and she’s okay with it, why wouldn’t my real family be as well.
I lifted from her shoulder, “I mean it’s going to be like coming out. Again.” I said while wiping my tears.
She had a little smile, “Hmmhmm,” and wiped her own tears.
“They already know I’m gay. I don’t see a whole lot of difference between the two. Sure, I prefer a dick over a vagina, big whoop,” I said this as I twirled a finger in the air, “I also, just so happen, to be able to stop people, hurl them across a mall…” My voice began to trail off.
“Listen, J,” Liz broke my silence, “if things don’t, you know, turn out well you will always have a place with me.” She criss-crossed her heart, and mouthed the word “promise.”
I almost damn near lost it when she told me that. I hugged her tightly; I am incredibly lucky to have a friend like Liz. We let go, took a deep breath and let out an audible sigh.
“Do you want me to go in with you?” She asked.
I thought about it for a second, “Tempting, but I think that this needs to be between me and them,” I said nudging my head towards the house.
She nodded and we began to get out of the car. Both, in silence, went to the back seat to collect out purchases. Leave it to Liz to make sure that we got them even in a time of peril. We separated the different bags, silently handing things to each other.
Once we were finished we slammed the back doors at the same time, and to me it seemed that the echo was much louder than previous times. Liz walked around the car to hug me, “Call or text me if anything okay? I will not go to sleep until you do.” She looked into my eyes as I nodded and began to walk towards her car that was parked near the front of the house. I just stared as she placed everything in the trunk. Remarkably, everything was able to fit in the tiny thing and she drove away.
I was alone, standing there, just thinking. I looked around the side yard, that’s where the garage is, and I breathed in the night air and looked at the palm trees. Funny thing, the way that the leaves of the palm leaves were swaying, it appeared as if it was telling, well I guess more like pointing, for me to go inside. I took the hint. I took one last deep breath and headed inside, closing the garage door behind me.
I stepped into the laundry room. Luckily, Emily wasn’t there to startle me this time. Wouldn’t want to unintentionally throw her against a wall. I cringed at the thought of that image. I was glad that she wasn’t there, along with everyone else. They would have seen me and would have began to ask questions about the trip, what did I get, etc; a topic that I probably would have enjoyed.
I made my way to the living room/kitchen area. I stepped in, I watched as everyone was trying to get a plateful of raviolis that Emily made for dinner. Food was another thing that I wasn’t in the mood for. I cleared my throat to make my presence known, no one flinched.
I cleared my throat again, a little louder this time. They all turned around with plates in their hands and Emily was holding a large wooden spoon that had Marinara on it. My throat was suddenly dry, “I uh… Hate to interrupt. But, um… I need to call a family meeting.”
My dad was about to say something in protest, probably about postponing the meeting until after dinner, but I said, “It’s really important,” in a very serious whisper, “In the study.” And I left to go to my room so that I could leave the bags, which felt like they suddenly had fifty pounds of sand in them.
I walked away to head to my room with everyone staring at me; I could feel their confused eyes on the back of head. Went up the stairs and into my room, threw the bags onto the floor near my bed and went into the bathroom. I need to throw some water on me. I turned on the hot water, placed my hand under the stream and just threw the water right onto my face. I felt better. I headed over to the towel and I looked at the bathtub, very tempting.
“Not right now,” I mumbled to myself as I dried off.
I had to pick up my feet as I walked because they were getting heavier with each step I took in the direction of stairs.
“Everything will be alright,” I told myself. “It can’t be any worse than when I came out to them, it’s basically the same thing.” I reassured myself. That made me feel a little better.
I remember that day, the day that I told them. They basically had caught me lying about how I wasn’t with the friend that I told them that I was going to be with. I came home really late one night, my phone had conveniently died on me, therefore I was unable to call the house to say that I was going to be out as late as I was. So, my parents ended up calling my friend, Morgan. Once they found out that she was out of town for that weekend, they began to worry, and waited until I got home.
When I did get home, both if them were waiting in my room with stern and disappointed faces. My mom was the first to speak, “Where have you been?”
“I said that I might be late.”
“Exactly, ‘might be late.’ Which would involve a phone call to tell us that you were going to be late.”
“I called the house, but it went to the machine after it rang. My phone died, shortly after.” I said as I held up my phone and pressed random buttons to show that it, indeed, did die.
I thought that I had thoroughly distracted her and the situation would be settled, “You never said where you were.”
That came out of nowhere, I thought that once she knew that I was fine that I was going to off the hook and the dead phone would take the blame. Not today. “I told you guys before I left.”
My mom continued to speak. Looking as if she was slowing getting angrier, “Jacob, you’ve answered other questions that I was going to ask you. But you have failed to mention where you have been.” She looked at me, I was about to speak, when she interrupted, “Don’t say that you were with Morgan. I called her when I couldn’t reach you because of your dead phone. She isn’t even in town this weekend.”
“Damn phone!” I thought.
“So, where were you?” She paused after each word.
I didn’t know what to say. They had caught me red handed. I couldn’t just talk my out of this, I was completely cornered. I couldn’t come up with anything on the spot, other than the truth. Truth was that I was sort of on a “date” with David, but some of his friends had tagged along. So really it wasn’t a big deal. I could’ve told my parents that I was going to go see David; they had no idea who he was. I just felt better telling them that I was with someone else, fewer questions. Why did I say one of the few people that my parents could get in contact with? Stupid, stupid move.
My answer was obviously taking too long. My mom came up to me, “Where have you been?” She said almost hysterical. I paused again, not answering. She slapped me across the face, “Where were you?!”
I began to cry right on the spot. After about 10 seconds, my instinct took over. I ran. Not away, just away from them. I ran down the stairs, into the living room turning on no lights along the way, sat alone in the dark, and began to cry again.
Within about 2 minutes a light behind me turned on. “Damn!” I thought. I knew that they were going to find me; I didn’t put that much effort into hiding. I felt like they came a bit too soon.
They both came around the sofa that I was sitting on with my knees by my chest and my arms wrapped around my legs. They dragged over the iron and marble coffee table towards me and sat about 2 feet away from me. We sat in silence.
My mom broke the silence, “I’m sorry ab…”
I interrupted her, “I don’t want to tell you.”
“I don’t understand why.” She said, confused; knowing that there was a big piece that she was missing in all of this.
“I just don’t want to tell you.” I said holding back tears for a moment.
My dad spoke for the first time, “Why? What are we missing?”
“What is it that even after I slapped you,” she swallowed loudly, “that you don’t want to tell us? Help me understand Jacob. I don’t…”
“I’M GAY!” I yelled in their faces. Then I began to spill everything, “The only reason I lied was because I went out with this guy, David, and his friends for some food and a movie. So, to just bypass an interrogation on the way out, I just said that I was going to be with Morgan. There! That’s what I didn’t wan to tell you!”
Everything was quiet. My face was back in between my legs; I just didn’t want to look up.
“Jacob,” my mom sighed, “you know how I have always told that if you were gay it would be alright.”
“Saying it is completely different to how you react when you know the truth.”
She stayed quiet, knowing that, like most things, it is easier said than done.
My dad spoke, “Why do think that she was telling you that. Jacob, your mom and I, kind of figured that you were.”
I looked at them, dumbfounded, “What?!”
“Well, you never have had a girlfriend.” My dad said.
“You don’t really have any ‘guy’ friends, to put it frankly. When you were 8 you wore my heels on a frequent basis and only stopped because I told you to,” I lightly smiled at that, “and…”
There was a short pause.
“A mom always knows,” she stated.
I looked up at them blankly. “So, what, you wanted to hear it from the horse’s mouth or something?”
They both looked at each other. “Something like that, I guess.” My dad said.
I still just looked at them, as if now I was the confused one. “So, actually I didn’t have to say anything because you two already knew it.”
Both of them nodded. I began to think, “Then why the fuck did we have to go through all of this! Why couldn’t somebody just have been like ,‘We know that you’re gay so, no need to hide it and it’s fine.’ We could have skipped all of this!”
But I look back at that night now and know that it was better that I said it. I have never looked back. We joke about it now. Saying how that being late that night really had nothing to do with my being gay. But, I guess at the time I saw it differently.
Thinking about that night, I had made it into the study without realizing it. Everyone was waiting for me; my mom, dad, sister, and Emily. Usually when a family meeting was called, it meant everyone in the house; we considered Emily as part of the family. But I didn’t want her or my sister there for what I was about to say.
“I just want to talk to mom and pops.”
Eve looked at me funny and with confusion in her eyes. Emily understood the gravity of the situation. She took my sister’s hand and began to walk towards the door. They both exited, but not before Eve gave another confuse stare. I realized after they left that the door was still open, but before I could even ask, Emily appeared. She smiled half-heartedly and shut the door.
I turned back around and faced my parents. I grew a pair and began to speak, “There’s no easy way to say this.” Both of their expressions changed from just listening to one that had puzzlement, worry, and curiosity. “It’s better that you hear it from me because it’s probably going to end up in the news.”
“The news?” both of them said.
“Yeah. You guys better sit down for this.”
In unison they nodded with fear ridden expressions and sat at a small table that my dad had in the study.
“Jacob, what happened?” mom said with worry.
“I’m going to start from the beginning and know that none of this is made up.”
They slowly nodded in agreement.
“Liz and I were sitting down about to have dinner at Bal Harbour and we were talking,” I began to already get uncomfortable, “the conversation turned into one about this guy from school that I’m currently tutoring, Devin. You guys probably know him, he’s on the baseball, football, teams; star player. I guess you can say that we were having,” I wanted to chose the right word, “an inappropriate conversation about him, I won’t go into details.”
They nodded. I’m sure that the last things that they want to hear are the kinds of conversations that Liz and I engage in.
I continued, “And, well… Um… He, Devin happened to be at Bal Harbour as well,” I let out a nervous laugh, “and was also eating. At the same restaurant. With 2 large friends.” Another nervous laugh. “Let’s just say, that he wasn’t too happy with the comments that I said about him.”
“Jacob, what happened?” My dad said with slight nervousness in his voice.
“I’m fine, really. I may have a few bruises. Liz’s ankle may hurt a little…”
“Let me see them!” My mom jumped.
“Can I finish the story? That’s not the bad part.”
My mom sat back down slowly. I can only imagine what is going through their minds right now.
I began to tell the story; “He got angry and pushed me off my chair. I skidded on the floor for like 20 feet, until a fountain stopped me. Before I even had the chance to move, Devin picked me up and threw me into the fountain.”
My mom gasped and placed a hand on her chest. My dad remained silent, and totally motionless. I knew that he was pissed off.
“I looked up from the water and I saw him coming at me, I knew what was coming. So, I threw my hands up in the air, like this,” I showed them by criss-crossing my arms in front of my face, “but he never came to me. I looked up and saw that he wasn’t near me. I noticed that there was a crowd of people gathered somewhere else, so I walked over there to see what was happening. Amongst all of the turned over chairs, broken umbrellas and glass tables; Devin had end up in it with his friends helping him up. He saw me and all 3 of them began to move towards me.”
My mom gasped again and my dad remained silent.
“Liz luckily grabbed me and we began to run away, or at least until we could find some security or they could find us. But Liz tripped because of her high heels and she brought me down with her. Devin and his friends were still after us, we hadn’t lost them or anything. He made his way towards me. I again waited for the impact, but when it didn’t, I looked up.”
I paused trying to find the right words to describe what happened. Everything I thought of just sounded crazy.
“I don’t know. It looked like there was some sort of ‘bubble’ that he couldn’t get through. I could barely hear him screaming at me. He got really angry and called his friends over. They all began to kick and punch, but the ‘bubble’ stopped them. I know it sounds crazy, but if it wasn’t for that, I wouldn’t be here in one piece.” They probably think that I’m crazy, or making this whole thing up but I kept on going. “I turned to Liz, who was still on the floor. I guess since they couldn’t get to me, they were going to go for the next best thing.”
I heard my mom whisper, “Oh no!”
“I screamed ‘NO!’ before they got to her. Devin looked at me and I at him. Then the next thing I knew, Devin is being hurled across the mall. Then his friends looked at me and the same thing happened to them. I ran over to Liz to help her up but she began to scream because they were coming back, stampeding this time. I yelled ‘STOP!’ at the top of my lungs. They stopped, frozen in time basically,” I said as a looked away. “I don’t how else to explain it to you, but after that me and Liz bolted out of there and yeah…” my voice trailed off.
There was silence; I could hear the crickets outside.
I broke the silence that I think that I startled my parents, “I think that I’m, I’m a mutant. I had no idea until a few hours ago.”
It was silent again. I took their silence, as disbelief in the story or they knew that I had lost it. I grabbed the remote from the table. I turned it on to the news channel and like what Liz and I thought, it was on the news.
The newswoman was at Bal Harbour, live. “Thank you, Judy. I’m currently here at Bal Halbour in Aventura. The story tonight, who is responsible for all of the damage that was caused tonight and how did it happen.”
They switched to some witness, “I remember eating my dinner,” began the elderly woman, “and then out of nowhere, my table was knocked down.”
“I saw someone being thrown into the air,” a man said in disbelief.
“They were like statues. Just there.” Another woman said in shock.
The newswoman continued, “What the last eye witness is referring to is the three men that are within the mall, that appear to be, literally, stuck in place. One of the men is actually hovering about ten inches off the ground,” as she spoke a clip showed one of Devin’s friends floating, “Police are trying to move them but they say that they won’t budge. They are also in agreement that is the work of a mutant…”
She was speaking but I couldn’t hear her. I completely forgot about Devin and his goons. “Oh shit!” I said out loud.
“What is it?” My dad said.
“I forgot about Devin and his friends. I don’t know how I can reverse it or whatever.”
“Try thinking of letting them go. Like you’re removing something off of them,” mom said.
I began to think about them being frozen as a “casing” around each of them and I was lifting it off of them.
“We have just received word that the three men have just begun to move again…” My dad shut off the TV.
“Whoa!” I said under my breath. “Wait? How did you guys know that would work?”
My dad spoke, “J, I think that this time, it’s you that needs to sit down.”
“Okay?” I sat across from them.
“I think that you should know how your grandparents died,” Dad said.
I pointed at my dad, “Didn’t your parents die in a car crash,” and then I pointed over to my mom, “your parents were in a boating accident.” I paused, “Sorry.”
Mom spoke, “No,” she said flatly, “the real reason they died.”
“What?!” I said confused, “What are you saying?”
“Luckily, you were young enough that you don’t have a clear timeline in your head of when they died.” My dad said.
He was right. My grandparents were all dead before I was 5 years old. But I was confused, what did my grandparents have to with the situation.
“Wait, why are you mention them?”
“Well for starters,” mom took over, “they are the earliest recorded members of our families that are mutant, like you.”
“What?!” I said stupidly.
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