Chapter 5: Settling In.
**Author's Note:** Please read the disclaimer in Chapter 00 before you read this.
After fixing both of us breakfast, I called work and let them know I'd be late. We ate quickly and then I drove Colt to his new school. Before we got out of the car, I asked him to hold out his hand. "What for?" he wanted to know.
"Just do it and you'll see," I told him. Hesitantly, he did as I requested and I placed something in it.
"What's this?" he wondered aloud.
"It's a key to the house," I responded, noting the look of wonder on his face.
"You're giving me a key to your house?" he asked, amazed.
"Of course," I replied. "You'll be getting home before I do, so how else would you get in?"
"I thought I'd just have to hang out until you got home," he told me.
"But what if the weather was bad?" I asked, trying to put this into perspective.
"Then I'd just have to hang out at school longer," he stated, unfazed. "Not a big deal."
"Well, that's not acceptable to me, so just take the key," I insisted.
"You really trust me that much?" he pressed.
"Look, if you're going to live in my house, you need to have a key and that's all there is to it," I explained. He seemed pleased by this small gesture and a satisfied grin covered his face. Once he accepted the key, I slipped him a few dollars, so he could buy his lunch.
We got out of the car and made our way to the main office, where I announced our intentions. There was a flurry of activity, before the secretary went to get the principal to handle things. The principal guided us into her office, where we could discuss the situation in private.
I quickly informed her that Colt had been kicked out of his home, which wasn't technically true. I quickly added that he was seventeen and I was getting a lawyer to deal with his emancipation from his family.
"He is old enough to drop out of school without parental permission," she told us, "so I guess he is old enough to transfer himself, especially since you are seeking to have him emancipated. My only question is, who is going to pay his tuition?" She was a typical private school bureaucrat, quickly getting down to the financial bottom-line.
"I will be covering that expense and he will be living with me," I told her.
"And you are?" she countered.
"A close family friend," I lied, feeling that it was none of her business. She gave me a quick once over and made a face that told me she thought I had motives other than just helping Colt. However, she gave us the paperwork to fill out and told Colt he could start attending classes, as soon as his tuition was paid. I immediately asked the amount, wrote out a check, placed it on her desk and then we both thanked her. As I left, the principal was escorting Colt to the guidance office, to get his schedule.
I drove directly to work, as I didn't wish to be any later than I already was. After taking care of a couple of minor emergencies, I called my company's legal office, so I could speak with an attorney I knew that worked there. I told him about Colt's situation and asked him to recommend a lawyer we could use to handle his emancipation. He said he'd do a little research and get back to me before the end of the day. I thanked him and then turned my attention to the mounting pile of work that I had to deal with.
All day long, I had trouble concentrating. That's because my brain was filled with Colt. I could almost see him, hear his voice and even feel his touch. I continually looked up, as if I expected to see him standing there, even though I knew that would be impossible. Not only was he in school, but there was also no way he would know where I worked. I never gave him that information. However, logic wasn't playing any role in my thoughts that day. Instead, I was fixated on a younger guy who had been in my life for only a short time. How could I be so consumed by him, after only a few days?
I continually tried to force myself to focus, but no matter what I did, I could only think about seeing Colt again. During our first day apart, I found myself obsessed by an urge to rush home to be with him when he got out of school. I even considered feigning illness, just so I could leave early, but then I decided against it. If I did that today, how would I make it through the rest of the week? Would I have to leave early every day or stay home until the following Monday? I couldn't do that. First of all, my boss would require a doctor's note to excuse an absence that lasted that long. No, I'd have to tough it out.
It was the longest day I had ever worked, or at least it felt that way. Every time I looked at my watch or up at the clock, only a few more minutes had passed, even though it had seemed like hours. In the long run, I accomplished very little, except for getting the name of a lawyer we could use from my friend. It was almost 5:00 when he got back to me, so I decided to wait until the next day to call the other lawyer. I was in too much of a hurry to get home to my baby to take the time to do it now. All I wanted to do was to see how Colt's day had gone and spend a little time with him.
Colt had been home for more than an hour, by the time I arrived. He must have heard me enter and came rushing to greet me. I had two arms wrapped around me before the door had closed. "Well, I'm happy to see you too," I told him. "Did you have a good day?"
"Yeah, it was great," he said, excitedly. "The school has a lot of neat things and there aren't very many people in any of my the classes, so the teachers are able to help me with the things I've missed. I think I'll be able to catch up easily."
"That's great," I told him, while giving him a hug, which was as much for me as it was for him. "I'm glad to see everything worked out so well."
"Yes, and I might even try out for some of the sport teams, if I go back there for my senior year," he announced. "Well, if that's okay with you," he added, thinking that he may have overstepped himself a bit.
"Why would I mind?" I asked him. "I think it would be great being able to watch you compete on the school teams." He beamed back at me.
"Oh, I also made dinner for us," he informed me. "I hope you don't mind that I dug through the freezer, fridge and cupboards to find things. I just didn't put it in the oven yet, because I wasn't sure what time you'd be home."
"Mind? I'm thrilled," I exclaimed. "I didn't even know you could cook."
"Some things," he told me. "Most of the time I was expected to have dinner fixed for my parents, by the time they got home from work. It's not really a big deal, but I don't know how to fix any fancy things - only some simple stuff."
"That's all right," I assured him. "So what are we having tonight?"
"Well, I found a ham slice, so I put pineapple on it and it's ready to go in the oven, along with some French fries and candied carrots. I hope that's okay?"
"It sounds fine to me," I announced, before giving him the largest smile I could manage. His chest seemed to puff out when he heard my response. He looked so proud of himself and immediately started placing things in the oven, which he had already preheated. I could see that he might turn out to be more of a blessing than I suspected.
While our meal was cooking, I went to my room, took off my work clothes and got into something a little more comfortable. When I came out, I thought of something else. "By the way, did you finish your homework?" I asked him. He flashed me a comical look in response.
"Most of it, Dad," he teased, while making another face.
"Well, I just wanted to make sure," I explained, thinking I needed to justify my reason for asking. "I just thought if you were living here with me, I should make sure you didn't fall any further behind. I'll also help you with whatever I can." He gave me a devilish grin.
"Now, that doesn't mean I'll do your homework for you," I announced, causing his smile to dim slightly, "but I will try to explain anything you're stuck on or check your work for you, if you want me to, such as proofreading your papers." His smile grew again.
"Thanks, I appreciate it," he told me, "and I'll be sure to take you up on that. I do okay, but I probably could do even better with a little help." I felt that was a good sign. It appeared he wasn't afraid to work hard or do well. That pleased me immensely, as too often teens feel those who do too well are geeks, or worse.
It wasn't long before dinner was ready and it was quite good. Colt had done an excellent job and I told him so. He seemed quite pleased by my praise. Once we finished, I told him to go finish up his homework, while I cleaned up and put things away. He started to protest, saying that was his job, but I told him it was only fair that I do the dishes and clean up the mess, since he had prepared the meal. He finally relented and went to his room.
When I finished my chores, I went into the living room and began watching CNN. I thought I needed to catch up on what was happening in the world, while my life was being turned upside down by Colt. I was engrossed in a story when suddenly Colt burst out of nowhere and leaped onto my lap. "Done," he announced, with a giggle.
"Damn, are you trying to scare me to death or crush me?" I asked, teasing Colt.
"Neither," he giggled back. "I just want to be close to my best friend in the whole damn world," he added, sappily, as he put his head against my chest.
I didn't know what to do or say at that point. It's not that I didn't like the physical contact with him, but this was looking more like a case of hero worship than love. "Hmmm, I guess you don't know very many people then," I shot back, to see what his reaction would be.
"I do too!" he countered, emphatically, while lifting his head and staring me in the eye. "But none of them have cared about me as much as you do."
"Oh, I'm sure some of them did," I explained, "but they just weren't in a position to help at the time." I was hoping this would get him to think a bit and maybe take me down from his pedestal.
"Uhnt uh," he shot back, in child-like defiance. "I might have other friends, but none of them care about me like you do. I think you even care more about me than my parents did. At least you wouldn't throw me out because you didn't like who I was."
"Well, I'm glad you feel that way," I conceded, "but I think you're blowing this all out of proportion. Sure, I care about you, but I'm sure your parents do too, in their own way. Maybe they just need time to deal with this new knowledge about you. I mean, think about how they found out - hearing it from someone else and not you. The shock of that alone might have caused them to react in a way other than they might have done in another situation." I hoped this might cause him to reconsider things.
"Uhnt uh," he responded, defiantly. "They wouldn't have accepted that I like guys, no matter how they found out. My dad has said many times that fags are disgusting and shouldn't even be allowed to live. What's worse is that my mother agrees with him. I couldn't have lived there no matter what. They'd have made my life a living hell and would have tried to `fix' me." Colt was so worked up by this that his body was shaking. I wrapped my arms around him, to make him feel better, and he slowly melted against my body, letting go of all his pent-up frustration.
"I think maybe it would be best if we just ended this discussion here," I advised him. "I think we need to find something a little more enjoyable to think about for now. Here, you take the remote and find something on TV, while I run to the toilet." As he got up to let me out of the chair, I handed him the controller and then rushed off to the john. I didn't really need to go that badly, but I did want to get away for a few minutes. I was getting emotionally choked up listening to the things Colt was saying and wasn't sure it would be wise to let him see me reacting like that. Right or wrong, I went into the toilet, forced myself to urinate, washed my hands and then went back to join him in the living room.
Seeing Colt was sitting in my chair, I went over and sat on the sofa. "Hey, no fair!" he exclaimed, while leaping out of the chair and racing across the room. He sat down beside me and leaned tightly against me. Instinctively, I lifted my arm and wrapped it around him, as he got comfortable.
"Oh, this is nice," he whispered. "I like this even better." He quickly made himself comfortable, while flicking through the channels. He finally found something he wanted to watch and we settled in.
While Colt watched his program, my mind raced over the past few days. I thought about everything that had happened and then wondered where all of this was going to lead. I knew I would have to do better at work tomorrow, as I wasn't very effective today. In order to do that, I would first have to cope with my feelings for Colt.
Colt seemed to sense that I wasn't really watching the program with him, as I didn't react to scenes when he did, so he was curious about what I was doing. "What are you thinking about?" he asked me, breaking my reverie.
"Uh, just some things from work," I lied, having had to come up with an answer with little forewarning.
"Oh, just forget about that stuff and relax," Colt advised me. I think he wanted a little more of my attention than I was giving him.
"I'll try," I replied, switching my focus to the program I was supposed to be watching.
Colt leaned back against me again, making sure I knew he was there. I bent forward and kiss the back of his head, without even realizing I did so. This caused him to spin around and give me a very wicked grin. Seeing I was somewhat oblivious to what had caused his reaction, he eventually turned back around and leaned back against me again.
When the program was over, Colt got up and went to his room, while I went around and locked up quickly, so I could follow suit. After getting to my room, I took a quick shower, put on fresh undies and slipped into bed. Before long, I heard my bedroom door open, saw a shadowy figured walk briskly across to the other side of the bed and then I felt the mattress sag, as he crawled in beside me.
"Colt, I though we discussed this last night," I announced.
"But we aren't going to be as busy tomorrow," he protested.
"But I still have to go to work and you have to attend school," I replied.
"So, what difference does it make where we sleep?" he asked me. "We'll still get our rest." I really didn't want to spend the night arguing with him about it.
"Okay, but just tonight and no funny business," I told him.
"What kind of funny business?" he asked, before bursting out laughing.
"You know, so just go to sleep," I answered, before rolling onto my side, facing away from him. I guess he didn't take that as a deterrent, because he slid his body toward mine and spooned up against me, resting one arm over my chest. He sighed dreamily as he did so and I just let him have his way. Actually, I found it quite enjoyable too.
We must have slept that way all night, because that was the position we were in when I awoke the next morning. As I attempted to get up, I gently lifted his arm and crawled out from under it, when I heard a sleepy voice behind me speak. "Hey, where are you going?" it asked.
"It's almost time for the alarm to go off," I began, "so I was just going to make some coffee and get things ready for breakfast."
"K, I'll come help you then," he mumbled, still not totally coherent. He got out of bed and began to follow me when I realize he wasn't wearing a thing, as his erection was leading the way. He must have slept naked with me all night long.
"Uh, maybe you'd better go to the toilet and slip something on first," I advised him. "I don't need a mess on the kitchen floor and would prefer not to have any pubes in my eggs." Colt glanced down quickly, showing he obviously forgotten he was naked too, before looking up at me and giving me one of his erotic grins.
"But I didn't try any funny business, did I?" he asked, raising his eyebrows as he did so.
"I'm not sure," I shot back. "Did you?" He began laughing.
"I guess you ARE a sound sleeper then," he teased, before running off to his room. I wasn't sure what that was supposed to mean, but I think we had just reached a new level in our relationship.
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