Disclaimer: This is a story about teenagers in high school. While not in this chapter, there will be descriptions of consensual sexual acts between high school students of the same gender and age. If this kind of story offends you, why are you on nifty? Stop reading :). If you are under the age of 18, or whatever the legal age is in the country you currently reside in, stop reading. This story is completely fictional and any similarities to people, places or events are entirely coincidental.
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Now to the fun stuff!
Hey everyone, I am Chris. For all those who have written me: Thank you very much! I will answer each and every e-mail I get and I am glad that people read the story and even like it! As I have mentioned in my last submission, this is my first time writing anything even close to a story such as this. There will be mistakes, of that I am sure. I will try my best to bring the story that I have in my mind to you, but writing a story is hard work and my lack of experience is not helping.
I am however trying my best, and hope that it shows. Please enjoy the second chapter of Chances and Changes! If you have any criticism, feedback or comments to the story, writing or grammar, please write me an e-mail to <email@example.com>.
Chances and Changes: Chapter 2
"So, how was your first day?" Dad asked as they watched some TV-show.
"Tiring. I'd almost forgotten just how long a school day can feel."
Nate didn't mention the things Thomas had said to him. What was he supposed to say? That it hadn't even taken him a week to make some enemies at his new school? He pushed the thought into the back of his mind.
"But at least I made some friends. Sam is really funny and I ate lunch with her and her friends Sarah and Claire. We compared schedules and I have almost all classes with at least one of them and we all have Spanish together! We must have been super lucky, Sam said it almost never happens that people share so many classes. The only classes without any of them are English and Sociology"
Again thoughts of Thomas crept up as the latter was the only class he had with him. He really hoped he would be able to clear up whatever misunderstanding had occurred between them.
"That's great. How are the classes?"
"Fine so far. Our math teacher seems to be really strict and... let's say ambitious, but I don't mind. He said we could switch classes to someone else, but I don't think I will. English and Physics seem kinda boring, but the teachers are nice enough."
Nate fought with himself about whether or not to tell Dad about Thomas but decided against it. There wasn't all that much to tell really.
“And what did you do all day?” Nate asked.
"Nothing much, I just got us some new plates as a housewarming gift to ourselves." Dad grinned mischievously "How about we break them in by ordering Italian food. There is this place I saw today while shopping and I got the flyer."
"Ha, you're just too lazy to cook us something yourself. You'd find something to celebrate everyday if it got you out of kitchen-duty!" Nate laughed but didn't protest too vehemently. Italian food was his favorite and his father knew it.
"Well now that you mention it, we are living in a new house, you just started the new school year and found some friends and I got to live out my shopaholic tendencies! All of that just screams celebration!"
The food was great and he enjoyed spending time and relaxing with his father but as Nate went to bed that evening he couldn't help but think about the events of the day.
'Stop worrying, what is one guy gonna do?'
The next couple of weeks went by in a flash. Nate and his Dad put the finishing touches on the interior of their new home and he was really starting to warm up to it now that he had gotten used to it. Having two bathrooms was nice since he and his Dad had to leave the house around the same time and there had been more than one "bathroom-argument" back in Houston when one of them was hogging it for themselves.
His friends were really great and while he didn't see much of Sarah or Claire outside of school beside the occasional study session, Sam quickly became a constant in Nate's life and they hung out together all the time. He hadn't pegged her the type at first but she loved videogames just as much as he did himself. She had two younger brothers and told him that whenever they weren't trying to kill one another they would play videogames together. Between hers and his own collection they pretty much had anything they wanted to play.
As they sat on her bed Nate tried to at least get up to second place in Mario Kart. He had given up trying to catch up to Sam after their first few games, she just made him eat dust whenever he tried. Nate was totally absorbed in the game when Sam asked:
"Nate, you remember Thomas?"
"Hmm?" Nate asked absentmindedly
"You know, Thomas, the guy you asked me about when we first met. Did he give you any kind of trouble?"
"No, what kind of trouble?" Nate quickly dismissed thoughts of that Monday when Thomas told him he wanted him gone. He had never approached Nate or even acknowledged his presence after that time. They didn't see much of one another anyway, since they only had one class together and neither Sam nor Sarah or Claire seemed to be in the same social circles as him.
"I was just going home the other day and thought I heard your name. When I turned that direction I saw Tom scowling at me. I'm not sure but I think they were talking about you but they stopped when they noticed me. They know we're friends. So I thought I'd ask, if something happened between you and him."
"Well, now that you mention it... The first and only time he spoke to me he told he wanted me gone and called me a faggot. I was worried at first, but he never looked at me again, so I just thought I'd leave well enough alone."
This whole conversation had made Nate uncomfortable. Why would Thomas talk about him to his friends?
He had never told Sam the whole story about what happened to him in Houston but he thought she suspected at least some of it. She was a very empathetic person and was good at reading people. She said she wanted to be journalist someday and he supposed it would be a helpful skill. Besides, simply being near her made you want to tell her everything about yourself. She had a very motherly air at times, and made her friends feel like if you just told her what bothered you she would understand and make you feel better.
Nate trusted her, he really did, but he just couldn't help himself. The last time he thought he could trust someone it had all blown up in his face. It was hard for him to open up and talk about his past and he didn't want to just push his problems on her.
Sam frowned at that: "Why didn't you tell me?"
"I don't know, it just never came up."
"Whatever. If something happens, you'll tell me, right? I never really thought him the bullying type, but that look on his face..."
"Sure." She just rolled her eyes at him, probably taking note of his evasive answer.
"And now, I've got a race to win and someone to pound into the ground at Tekken after that!"
The next day he arrived at school he immediately knew something was off. Wherever he went, whispers seemed to be trailing behind him. When he tried to greet Trey, one of the guys from his English class he had struck up a conversation with last time, avoided looking at him and left after mumbling some excuse.
'That was weird' Nate thought.
It was as if the whole school was talking about some secret he wasn't privy to. He tried not to think how similar this whole thing felt to what happened before.
Once he got to his locker he immediately realized what people where whispering about. Someone had written "FAG" in huge, pink letters over his locker door and hung some very girly, pink panties over the lock. When Nate saw it he blushed bright red. After snapping a quick picture he threw the panties in the nearest trash can and did his best to wipe off his locker with some paper towels and water from the bathroom and it came off easily enough. He knew however that this wasn't over yet, and the damage had already been done. He had tried to stay out of the high school rumor mill and since he had only transferred here a few weeks ago no one really knew much about him. And now the first thing they heard would be "Nate, the pink panties fag".
The transformation was immediate, as if someone had flicked the switch in the hive mind’s head from "nice" to "douchebag". People that were friendly to him before ignored him to stay out of the way of the scorn they thought for sure was coming his way and kids he had never seen laughed openly when they saw him, showing one another something on their phones.
He had to suppress a blush every time someone pointed at him and snickered. If he got a nickel every time someone did that he'd have enough money to pay for his lunch for the rest of the year by the end of the day. He finally got to class and sat down, releasing a sigh of frustration.
He didn't know why this was happening to him. AGAIN. He wasn't effeminate or flamboyant like some guys he had read about and seen on TV. While he wasn't bearded or anything like that and had a somewhat lean build, he looked masculine enough for his 17 years and had his father's facial features and dark hair. 5 foot and 7 inches of height meant he would never be a professional basketball player, but it wasn't all that short either.
He didn't let on that he was gay and he had never had a boyfriend or even looked at someone in a way that would imply any kind of romantic interest.
'Well, you were basically drooling when you saw Thomas the first time... But that couldn't have been enough to arouse any suspicion, could it?'
He pressed his hands to his temples as he felt a headache coming on.
"Nate!" It was Sarah and Claire.
"Have you seen it yet?" Sarah asked him, seeming agitated.
"My locker? Yeah, I cleaned it up already."
"Your locker? What's wrong with it? Never mind, it can wait. Haven't you seen the text?" Sarah pulled out her phone and showed him. Nate left out a sharp hiss. It was a picture someone had taken of him from behind, probably when he had been tying his shoelaces or something. They had photo shopped the picture to make it look as if the pink panties from the locker were peeking out from under his jeans. Next to it was written: "Call Nate for a good time <3". So that's what they had been showing one another on their phones. Nate was close to tears now. What could he do? Everything had been going so well and now this. At least the bit of back that was showing on the picture seemed to be fake as well, or he would have even problems to deal with. Claire and Sarah looked at him with worried expressions on their faces.
"Don't worry Nate, I'm sure this is just some stupid prank. Give it a few days and no one will remember anything happened. Something similar happened to Diane Sterling last year and she was totally fine" Claire said as she tried to calm him down.
"Now, what happened to your locker?" she asked.
I despondently showed them the picture I had taken with my phone before cleaning my locker.
It was their turn to scowl now "Whoever did this has some serious issues! Do you know what shithead might’ve done it?"
"No..." He had his suspicions but he was too upset to talk about it for now.
Sarah and Claire gave him one last worried glance and went to their seats when Mr. Peters entered. Almost at the same time Nate got a text and just about jumped to his feet and thought 'Oh God, what now?' as he discreetly dug up his phone from his pocket. He felt better when he saw it was from Sam "whats up N.? Every1 in class is buzzing with some rumor but no1 is telling me anything. U ok?"
He quickly typed a reply "im fine. C u for lunch?"
Nate somehow survived the first two classes of the day without cutting anyone and met up with Sam, Claire and Sarah in front of the cafeteria. They told Sam about the picture and the locker and when they finished she seemed just about ready to explode.
"Someone did WHAT?! Did you tell anyone about it yet? You have to tell the teachers. I'm sure that drawing on lockers is considered vandalism and they'll suspend that muscle brained dumbass!"
"I don't want to make it even worse. Besides, what is there to report? It wasn't sprayed or anything and it came of easily. There isn't even a trace left." Nate said, trying to keep Sam from running wild. How had that happened? He had been sure Sam would start mothering him not try to go on a killing spree.
"You can't just let it go, those dumb jocks need to get their asses whooped!" Sam said angrily though she had calmed down somewhat.
"Fine, fine, just keep it down, will you..." Nate consented.
"How do you know who did it?" Claire interjected curiously.
"Didn't Nate tell you? I overheard Thomas and his little flock of idiot sheep talking about Nate the other day. They stopped talking when they saw me coming because they know I'm friends with'im!"
Sarah asked: "But why would they do that? Nate, you didn't pick a fight with them, did you?"
"Of course not! The moment Thomas first saw me he decided he hated me" Nate replied miserably.
"Let's just go and get lunch. I didn't eat anything for breakfast and I'm starving. I'll go see Ms. Dull afterwards to report what happened, okay?"
The somber-mooded group entered the cafeteria.
The line was short, so getting their food didn't take too long. She had to push down an immediate flare of annoyance as she saw Thomas and his cronies at the other end of the dining room. She couldn't hear what they were saying as they were high-fiving one another and patting each other’s backs.
'I'm a dipshit!'
'Yeah me, too'
'My mom says I'm a jackass, but she's just being nice'
'I counted 10 brain cells this morning!'
She filled their mouths with her own version of a conversation to distract herself as they waited. How could someone hate Nate? He was so nice and sweet, but somewhat shy and insecure. She couldn't wrap her head around how someone could try to hurt him. She hadn't known him for a long time, but she knew she loved him like a brother.
They got their food, or at least the brown slop the cafeteria-ladies were trying to convince them was food, and went to the only free table left. That however forced them to go past Thomas and his friends' table and Sam really should have seen what was going to happen coming from a mile away. It was like a cliché. When Nate tried to squeeze past the table without touching anyone, one of the boys sitting there kicked him right in the ankle. He yelped in pain and Sam spun around to see what had happened. She tried to steady him, but her own tray of food got in the way and she couldn't grab him before he fell.
He lay there for a moment, sauce seeping into his grey sweater.
"Look where you're going, you homo." The jock spat as he looked down at Nate. The whole cafeteria was laughing now as Nate stood up, face expressionless, and limped out of the cafeteria. Sam suppressed the urge to slap the shit out of the collective school body, grabbed Sarah and Clair, who didn't need Sam to tell them to go after Nate, and hastened after him. Sam had her priorities straight here: Nate came first, dealing with the jerks would come later.
They found him in the boy's bathroom, trying to salvage whatever he could of his sweater.
He let out a loud "AAARRGHH" of frustration as he pulled it over his head, took a look at it and threw it in the trash
"Nate, are you okay? That was terrible just now." Sam said coming closer to him and looking him over
"That kick looked really painful, is your ankle alright?" Clare asked, since she had been walking behind Nate when it happened.
"It's fine. I'm used to it." his voice and expression were devoid of any emotion. The statement rang in the girls' ears like a loud clap. Used to it? That sounded so wrong on so many levels, even the quick-witted Sam had a hard time getting a coherent thought through her brain. She was still the first to get a grip on herself. Damage control, that was what they needed to do now.
"Nate, sit down and let me take a look at your ankle. Claire, grab that sweater and try soaking it, that might help. Sarah, there is a supply closet down the hall, go check if they have some detergent or anything of the like to get the stain out." The girls, finally given something to do, sprang into motion. Sarah practically ran out of the bathroom just as Claire fumbled with the trash bag, trying to disentangle the sweater from it. Sam pulled Nate down and had him sit on the floor. She pulled his pants leg up a little and his sock down as she prodded at the ankle lightly, feeling for a break and producing a slight wince from Nate. With two very active younger brothers she had seen her fair share of bruises, sprains and breaks and knew what to look for.
"This is at least sprained. I'm going to take you to the nurse, okay? You'll probably need some help walking, since the infirmary is almost to the other side of school." Sam said and helped Nate stand.
He leaned on her heavily and Sam grunted slightly under the weight. Just as they were preparing to leave the bathroom Brian came in, Thomas' best friend and number one henchman. He seemed surprised to see them but didn’t miss a beat.
"Did little Natey hurt his ankle?" he taunted, but Sam had just about had enough for a day.
"Shut it this instant and fuck off if you know what's good for you, Brian." She said menacingly.
"What, you having girls fighting your battles now?" What Brian didn't know before saying that, is that Sam's father served in the military and had taught his daughter quite a few moves in case she ever needed to protect herself or someone else. She'd never been forced to actually fight anyone, but she whispered to Nate "Just a second" as she helped him stand on his good leg. She tried to assess the situation and came to the conclusion that stopping Brian would be better than waiting for the whole thing to escalate. She was sure that Brian would try to hurt Nate again, who wouldn’t be able to resist with his wounded ankle and if Brian was braced and prepared for a fight it was clear who would come out on top. She decided to go on the offensive.
She spun around and glared at Brian. He was almost twice her size in height and weight, but Sam had always been a strong and athletic girl and he was obviously not expecting her to attack him. She delivered two quick punches to his gut and as he doubled over, eyes widening, she finished with a left hook to the young man's face. He hit the ground hard and was dazed for several seconds.
"Now said girl whooped your sorry ass. Next time there'll be worse."
"Good job, Sam. Brian was the one that kicked Nate." Claire said, who had watched the whole thing almost with amusement. She had known Sam for a long time and knew she was no pushover.
"That felt great!" Sam said and smiled at Nate who had a smirk on his face himself.
They walked in silence for a minute.
"What did you mean when you said you're used to it? Does your... does your father hurt you?" She felt awkward asking that, having met David several times now and while she certainly didn't think badly of him, who knew what went on behind closed doors.
Nate laughed: "Dad? Nah, he wouldn't hurt a fly. My old school..." He said and sighed.
"That's what my life there was like for about a year. I never told Dad and in fact, you're the first one I've ever told. I don't even know why I am talking about it now, since there is no use to it. My father never said anything, but it's the reason we moved here. He hoped I would have it better here and I am ruining it. Again."
Sam tried to read his eyes and come up with something she could say. What she found were empty eyes and emptier words. What could she say? Was there anything she could say to make it better?
"Won't you get in trouble because of Brian?" Nate's question stopped her train of thought.
"Nah. Brian won't say anything. I didn't hurt him really and he'll be too embarrassed to admit that it was me who beat him up."
"Okay." Nate said, hobbling toward the infirmary.
Chapter 2: END
I decided to name this little section of every submission Chris' Babbling. I will write down some of my thoughts and emotions about the chapter or maybe just rant a little about whatever is going through my mind as I write this. This is in no way important to understand the story itself and not reading this will not detract from the story (I hope). In fact, skipping this might save you some brain cells. :D
Even as I am writing this, I am fighting with myself on whether to end the chapter at this point or not. It's not as long as I would want it to be, but the break would be somewhat clean, without too much of a cliffhanger. Just in case I decide to write some more, I originally intended the chapter to end right after Nate and Sam's somewhat emotional walk to the infirmary. The biggest problem with writing long chapters, I have found, is having to read it again and again. It's like repeating a word until it loses any meaning and doesn't even sound like a word anymore. While you try to go through the plot and the dialogue again and again to find and erase inconsistencies the words turn to mush and you start wondering if any of what you wrote even makes sense or if you should just start over from scratch.
I had originally decided to tone Sam down a little, but I somehow made her personality even more dominant. :D I'm still not sure how I managed that but as I tried reading my own mush (haha) I found that I just like her the way she is right now and having her punch someone’s lights out was immensely satisfying to write.
Something else I noticed: Both the first chapter and this one take place mostly on Mondays. I don't know if it's just my general dislike of Mondays that makes bad things happen or some issue I would need a therapist for. hehe
Fun fact: I implied there was an "Incident" in Nate’s past in the first chapter. This chapter contains a little hint, or at least some foreshadowing concerning the aftermath of that incident.
Something I was asked was whether or not stuff will get too bad for Nate. My answer is that this is the beginning of the bad stuff. It will get rougher. It should mostly be done by next chapter but that doesn't mean it's going to be pretty or short.
As always, shoot me an e-mail, talking to all you guys was even more fun than I imagined it would be. Let me know if I should include the babbling or if you just find it silly. I hope you enjoyed the second chapter of Chances and Changes.
PS: Okay, so I decided to end the chapter. Sue me.
PPS: Just kidding, don’t do that.