Boy in the Rain -- Chapter 2
Hey guys. I neglected the story and I apologize for it, but here is chapter two. And remember the cat!
Confusion was not a state of mind that particularly appealed to Jesse. The sensation of not knowing what was going on, or why it was going on, unsettled him immensely. A place of great confusion for Jesse was school. It wasn't the work per se that confused him, but rather the kids and their incessant need to pretend to be something that they weren't. Ironically, he was also guilty of this. Nobody but the sleeping boy on the bed next to him had an inkling of who he really was.
Speaking of which, Toby was Jesse's newest cause of confusion. When he got back to the bathroom soon after Dave left, the boy was laying on the floor, his breathing regular. He had fallen asleep on the ice cold tiles. Jesse couldn't comprehend what depths of exhaustion could have driven him to do so.
The incident in the rain and then later in the bathroom seemed to have been only the end of a very long day for Toby. Jesse wasn't completely sure of his facts, but he knew that Toby's parents must have had something to do with it.
He and Dave had been so worried about the boy that they didn't really take time to inspect him closely. It was only when Jesse picked him up from the floor that he saw the feint scars on the boy's inner thighs. Upon even closer inspection, he noticed small round marks around his groin area. Most of the marks were a deep pink in colour, but there were a few nasty looking ones that looked to be a brownish red.
This was what confused Jesse so much. He was not na´ve enough to overlook the fact that it might be some form of self-mutilation, though. He was confused about why the boy would want to do it in the first place. Jesse had never really had a reason to hurt himself before; therefore he couldn't comprehend the reasons why people perform the act.
He reached over to the bed table and picked up the innocent looking red and white box. Taking out a cigarette, he lit it. He finished three more that night as he contemplated his current situation.
`Wow.' That was the only word that Darren could utter. They were sitting in Dave's bedroom, and he had just explained the whole situation to him.
`How old is the kid?' he asked.
`I don't know. He looks to be around Jesse's age. He is quite, er, developed, if you know what I mean.' Darren could see a light blush creep on Dave's cheeks. This is too good to pass up.
`Uhm, no? What do you mean?' Darren, of course, knew exactly what Dave meant, but he decided to have a little bit of fun with the man he is so in love with.
Dave looked uncomfortable. `Uh... Shit. How do I say this?' Darren laughed. My boyfriend is such a prude! He started to snicker, and Dave immediately caught on.
`You bastard!' he laughed. `For a minute there you had me sweating.'
Darren chuckled. `You're too easy. But let's get serious now. Where did the boy come from?'
`I've got no idea,' Dave said. `His clothes weren't dirty and he didn't really smell, so I assume he isn't a street kid. Even his hair was cut neatly. He was extremely thin, though.'
`You're being a little bit stereotypical here, babe. Just because he doesn't look dirty and scruffy doesn't mean he isn't from the streets. What else can you tell me?'
`There is one more thing. I wasn't sure if I should mention this, because it may just have been my imagination. I only noticed it the second time I went into the bathroom.'
`Noticed what?' Darren asked.
`He had what looked like little scabs around his groin, as well as a couple of scratches on his upper thighs. Do you think that that may be the reason he left home? Maybe his father...' Dave trailed off.
It took a couple of seconds for Darren to reply, `It may be that the boy hurt himself. It sounds to me like the scabs may be cigarette burns. If nothing else did, then this just proved to me that this is a rather serious case. But from what you have told me we are going to have to wait for tomorrow to find out once and for all what exactly is wrong here.'
`Yes. I don't think it would be wise to wake him up now. But since we are going to have to wait a while...' Dave said with a devilish grin on his face.
`You horn dog.' Darren sighed mock-reluctantly. Then, without warning, Dave jumped on top of him and kissed him, pushing his tongue inside Darren's mouth. Inwardly Darren smiled. He knew that this was the way things were supposed to be.
Morning came quickly for Jesse, even though he hadn't slept at all. When the sun's first rays penetrated through his bedroom window he was still in the exact same position as the previous night when he laid down next to Toby.
He had been awake all night, staring at the ceiling and thinking of the boy that was lying next to him. Toby must have been really tired, because he didn't even wake up once during the night.
Jesse looked over at the alarm clock on his bedside table. It was still gloomy in the room, and the red digits of the alarm cast an eerie glow around it. It was only 06:15, and school didn't start till eight. Not that he was planning on going to school if he could help it. Somehow Toby just seemed more important to him than playing the popularity game for another day.
Sighing, he got up out of bed and walked to the small kitchen. It was, as always, spotless. He was a neat freak, something that most teenagers are far from. That was one of the reasons why he didn't like to invite friends over to his flat. He tried it once, and when they left, he was up most of the night picking up coffee cups and straightening pillows.
Walking to the cupboard above the sink, Jesse got out two mugs. He switched on the kettle and proceeded with filling them with Chai tea powder. Although he kept coffee in the cottage, he didn't like it all that much. Chai tea was much healthier and he loved the spicy cinnamon taste. When the kettle was done boiling, he filled the two mugs to the brim with hot water and walked with a mug in each hand back to his room.
`Toby,' he softly said near the boy's ear. `Toby, wake up.' The boy's eyes opened slowly. He made two fists and rubbed the sleep out of them. And then his eyes widened and he gave a deafening scream.
Toby couldn't believe the volume of the sound that came out of his mouth. He was frightened, yes, but not even he could say why he is screaming like this. Something just felt wrong. Then he remembered.
`...people like you don't deserve to live...'
`...Martha! Bring me my gun NOW...'
`...do the world a fucking favour...'
`...burn in hell forever...'
Instinct suddenly took over and he took one of his still balled fists and caught an extremely confused Jesse in the stomach with a mean uppercut. He swung his fists again and felt his left hand hit something hard. All he wanted was to get out of this place, away from everyone and everything.
He wasn't thinking rationally. Hell, he didn't even know where he was or who he just punched. He just needed to get away. He could feel hot liquid splash over his face and naked chest. And then, for the third time in the space of about twelve hours, everything went black.
Jesse stumbled from his bedroom and into the small hallway in pain. The punch on his stomach hurt like hell, but it was the shot Toby delivered to the side of his head that was bothering him. He was unsteady on his feet, and the room was spinning around him at a rapid speed.
He staggered to the compact kitchen and opened the tiny freezer compartment in his fridge. He took out one of the gel ice packs that he kept in there and slowly made his way to the living room where a fell down in his favorite chair -- a black lazy boy. The spinning was starting to slow down, but every now and then it would gain a random burst of speed before slowing down again.
He slowly raised the gel pack and put it on the exact spot where Toby had hit him -- his right temple and closed his eyes. That is exactly how Darren and Dave found him thirty minutes later.