(c) 2011 Mychyl Kime (KimeNet Corp.)
This is a work of fiction, depicting teenage males in romantic and/or sexual relationships. The people depicted in this story (to the best of the author's knowledge) do NOT exist. In the rare case that they're based on real people, the names HAVE been changed... not so much as to protect the innocent as to spare the poor people listed within the unnecessary fame this story might bring to them... not that I'm saying lots of people will read this, or even people where I've lived, but there's always a slight chance... And these events are, for the most part, all the imagination of the author, although I've seen the events depicted many, many times. The places listed are as perceived by the author, and thus subject to my creative license, though the town used as the main character's hometown is easily as evil as depicted.
If you are under 18 years of age (or whatever the legal age in your area is) you're supposed to leave according to law. Of course, I can't very well make you leave... but if you choose to stay, DON'T GET CAUGHT! It is neither my fault, nor the fault of this wonderful site, if you get caught running around here.
Also, if you are repulsed by the concept of homosexual romance and/or sex, please feel free to leave at any time. In fact, now would be a good time. But hey, it's your call, of course... I can't make you leave, either... but if you choose to stay, feel free... who knows, you might even change your mind! My only question is: why are you here if that's the case?
Fair warning: this story is the follow-up to my previous trilogy, labelled The Ukiah Chronicles, under gay/highschool. Having read that trilogy is by no means a pre-requisite to this story, and may in fact change the way you read the beginning of this one; however, the stories are fairly divergent, and any important back-plot to the main character of this story will be discussed within, without needing to worry about his "mysterious past". Your choice, either way.
Please feel free to email me with your comments/suggestions at email@example.com. If you'd prefer, you can also IM me on the chance you catch me online (which is off and on, depending on the time of day and whether or not I'm working):
And now, without further delay:
My mind wandered back to the person I saw outside in the grass. I started wondering idly what he looked like, what he was doing there, how he would've responded if I'd tried to talk to him. Was something wrong? Would he have been grateful for my attention, or some compassion? I didn't know, and worse, I partly didn't want to know. His problems are his own, I tried to tell myself, but my conscience wouldn't listen.
Sighing, knowing I'd know no peace until I checked on him, I went back outside, but didn't see him. There, happy? I asked my conscience. Whatever it was, he's gone. Leave him be, you can't get involved in the life of every person you see from afar.
The rest of the night passed relatively uneventfully. Eventually, I settled down and completed my homework, though the first rays of light were filtering through my blinds as I finished printing the last paper. I stripped down and headed to bed, allowing myself to drift off into sleep...
Several hours passed before I woke suddenly with a start, feeling a bit chilled. It seemed like there was some dream, just beyond my memory, but no matter what I tried, I couldn't call it back to the front of my mind. Something about the cold... the cold that haunted me, even though I had no idea what it was all about. I thought maybe someone was trying to talk to me, through the cold, but it was no good, I couldn't remember anything.
I sighed, getting up and dressing quickly... I wasn't planning on seeing anyone for a couple days, so I just tossed on the same clothes I'd worn the day before. With my homework done already, I turned on the TV and fired up a video game, just wanting something to do, anything to keep my mind occupied.
After an hour or so, I thought I heard a noise in the courtyard, and paused the game, getting up to glance out the window. Through the blinds, I saw... someone in the courtyard, much as I had the night before. I wasn't sure, since I hadn't seem the figure very well in the dark, but I thought it could be the same person. He was sitting in the grass, facing away from me, the sun playing in his raven-black hair and glinting off his smooth, bronzed back. He shook a little, as though cold or... crying?
Without a moment's hesitation, forgetting my slight fear of the night before in favor of my curious compassion, I opened the door and stepped out onto the balcony, taking the stairs quickly down to the courtyard. He never moved to look, not even when I came to stand right behind him.
He sat, slumped over his knees, and I could hear him sobbing softly to himself. I stepped around in front of him and kneeled down, touching his shoulder gently; that got his attention, as he pulled back quickly from me, his eyes wide with apprehension as they found mine.
"Are you all right?" I asked... Stupid question! I chided myself as I heard the words. Of course he's not all right, he's crying! "Um..." I tried again, "what's wrong?"
He shook his head, rubbing his eyes and half-smiling. "No, I'm all right," he replied in a shaky tone, the sound of his voice like the sweetest melody to never be written. "I'm OK."
"OK doesn't cry like that," I said, trying to make a joke, but I felt him pull away, as though trying to protect himself. "If there's anything I can do..."
He shook his head again, forcefully. "Really, I'm all right," he said again in that beautiful voice. "I'll be fine."
I took a moment to size him up, trying to think what to say next. As I'd thought the night before -- because now I was certain this was the same guy -- he was about my age, maybe a little younger, 16 at the youngest. His round, smooth face looked like it was normally more used to smiling than sadness, and his beautiful eyes, the chocolate-colored pools of light in his face, were a bit dark, likely heavy with yet-unshed tears.
The light glinted off a small gold ring in his lower lip, which only served to accentuate his perfect lips. It was hard to tell from the way he was sitting, but it looked like he was my height, or possibly a little shorter, with a slim build that was obvious, even with his body folded up on itself. Slim, but not skinny like me; rather, I had a feeling that he could handle his own in a fight, if he'd had to.
His hands were clasped over the knees of his black jeans, almost tight enough to be painted on, with a pair of sneakers covering his feet... unlike mine, his feet weren't comically large, but instead seemed to fit his body (from what I could tell, from the way he was sitting) perfectly.
I decided that, no matter what I said, he wasn't ready to talk -- to me, at least -- about whatever was bothering him. "Well, tell you what, I'll leave you alone, but," I interjected quickly, "if you change your mind, I'm right here." I pointed up to my door and his eyes followed. "I live there, so if you need to talk later, you know where to find me. Deal?"
"OK," he said quietly, his half-grin fading.
"By the way, my name's Damien... good to meet you," I said lamely, trying to prolong the inevitable.
"Thanks Damien," he said softly, getting up and walking away. No name, nothing else, just... left. I watched as he turned the corner and walked out of sight before getting up and heading back upstairs to my apartment, closing the door once more behind me.
I didn't know what to think, to be honest. The boy was beautiful, but he obviously had his own troubles to deal with, and there was no way I'd be able to help him if he didn't want help. Besides, I still knew nothing about him, not even his name... how was I to know if he was straight, gay, or whatever? Even if he was gay, maybe he had a boyfriend, maybe that was why he was upset... and even if he was gay and single, what were the odds someone as beautiful and, dare I say, perfect as him would even be interested in someone like me?
Wait... what'm I thinking? I asked myself, shying away from that line of thought. I know nothing about him... I don't even know how old he is! He could be underage for all I know, and then what, fall in love with someone too young and end up in jail?
I shied away from that as well. No harm in looking, in having a momentary crush. I'd just have to avoid him in the future, or at least make sure I didn't go falling for him if he ever did come to me. Not likely, I thought, but my heart was hoping it wasn't true...
This chapter's a little shorter than my average fare, but I thought this was the perfect place to stop for this chapter.
So, now we've met our mystery boy... who's still a mystery in the end. No worries, I'm sure we'll see more of him in the future.
So far, so good with the pacing, though I don't expect this to hold for long. Ideally, at this rate, I should have chapter 3 ready to go within a couple days of this one being posted, but between school and looking for a job... well, we'll see what we see.
Thanks to the fan mail (already!) so far, and feel free to keep them coming! firstname.lastname@example.org is the address (please make sure to include From Afar in the subject line), and if you're interested about being added to the From Afar mailing list, let me know and I'll add you so you can receive updates as they become available!