The middle of the end of the beginning
He's straight..... such a cold, stark realization.
AFTER A WHOLE FUCKING YEAR!
Ok, calm down, Chase. Take a breath; a deep breath. Breathe, gaddamit, BREATH!
I can't believe he's doing this to me...Now? After a fucking year? Now he wants to be straight?
I hear myself laughing. Somehow my voice sounds different. It's like I'm hearing myself, but as someone else. I can feel my body shake as a guttural laugh bursts forth; it seems from the depths of my soul.
I'm aware that throughout all of this my eyes are still focused on Riley, but even now, he's still refusing to look at me.
LOOK AT ME DAMMIT! I feel a fire burning within me, threatening to explode.
You're straight? I mentally taunt, only wishing I were so cruel a person so as to say it out loud.
You can't be gay? Again, I have a sudden urge to laugh out loud.
This boy is not fucking serious...he's just not!... I mentally watch myself put my hands over my face...I exhale. I'm laughing again, not loud, but just enough for it to be audible.
Ok, Chase you're being a drama queen. You knew this was going to happen. You saw it...you were prepared for this...remember?
I knew that my mind was right. I did know this was going to happen. A blind man could have seen it. The last few weeks were hell. We would be together, but every time felt as if we weren't with each other.
Sure, we went to the movies...we hung out at my place, but it was like we were just friends...and not even close friends...just...friends.
Riley had stopped holding my hands months ago. He barely kissed me; we'd even stopped having sex. I kept asking him what was going on, and he kept telling me that he just needed time.
His excuse? "I'm just not a touchy person."
Bull-fucking-shit! And he knew it. In the beginning, all he wanted was sex. A blow-job here, a hand-job there...I'm not even going to mention actual intercourse; he could never get enough! And all of a sudden...it just stopped. He stopped asking. He stopped initiating. He just stopped everything as if I were diseased.
I kept asking him what was wrong.
Our relationship had changed. I mean, come on, we had gone from having sex all the time to pointless conversations that got us no where, always starting with me and ending with him. Always the same.
Me: "Riley, can I ask you something, please?"
Him: "Sure, ask me anything."
Me: "Are you still attracted to me?"
Him: (Almost incredulously) "Of course I am. Why do you keep asking me that?"
Me: "Well, you've stopped touching me."
Him: "No, I haven't. Where are you getting this from? I touch you all the time."
Me: "No you don't...well, you touch me...but you've stopped touching me. Have I done something to turn you off?"
Him: "Chase, what's going on? Why do you think you're not turning me on anymore? I'm with you, aren't I?"
Me: "You're with me, but at the same time, you're not? You know you could tell me if you didn't want to be with me anymore, right?"
Him: "Why do you keep saying that? Are you trying to break up with me?"
Me: "No! You know I'm not. I love you too much to not want to be with you. But I just need to know why you don't want to have sex with me. You say I'm attractive, but the most you do is hug me. You don't even kiss me."
Him: "I'm not the kissing type. You knew that from the beginning."
Me: "You kissed me in the beginning...why not now?"
Him: "I'm just not that into kissing."
Me: "Does my breath smell? You can be honest with me, you know."
Him: "Nah, you're breath is just fine...everything about you is just fine...perfect even." (He smiles). "Please let it go. I'm just going through some things right now... School's really stressing me out."
Me: "So, you're still attracted to me then?"
Him: "Of course I am, baby."
Me: "So, touch me. Let's have sex...right now."
Him: "What's up with you...why you so damn consumed by sex all of a sudden? WHAT'S FUCKING UP WITH THAT?!"
Me: "Why are you shouting at me?"
Him: "I'M NOT FUCKING SHOUTING OK! IS THAT ALL I AM TO YOU...A GOOD FUCK?"
Me: (Exasperated). "Look, forget about it. I'm sorry I brought it up."
Always the same. That's how it always went; me asking him what's wrong, and in the end, me always getting him angry. You would be amazed at how many times we had that exact same conversation.
I'm not now, nor was I then a fool. There were many things I didn't understand. I'm not even going to pretend that I knew everything, but men were definitely one of the only concepts that I understood fully. I knew then as I know now that he always got defensive to take the heat off of himself. What I didn't understand though, was why!
I realized that I'd been silent for too long. Thankfully, I also realized that I didn't owe him anything, so I didn't care if I made him sweat it out.
I looked at Riley, still refusing to look at me. I took another deep breath setting my resolve.
"Ok, Riley, I'm not going to beg you to stay with me. I think I can see that this really isn't what you want. I'll accept that, but I need to understand some things first...please... for me!"
He looked up, finally. Damn, even with tears in his eyes, he still looked so damn good.
A loud inhale snapped me out of my trance. His eyes met mine, and just for a moment, I swore the world stopped. It was like we were one... just like in the beginning. It seemed like the last twenty minutes never happened.
I saw so much love in his eyes.
In that instant I wanted to kiss him; to feel his soft lips pressed firmly against mine... to taste his tongue flicker on the inside of my mouth.
"What do you want to know?"
It felt like he was speaking directly to my soul. He looked into my eyes like he was searching me. I needed to look away, but I couldn't.
Without having to think, I spoke. I mustered all of my pain, and all of my love. I needed him to see what he was doing to me. He often told me that my eyes were the most expressive part of me; that they showed him everything I was feeling. I hoped with everything in me that they were doing exactly as he said they did. I hoped they wouldn't fail me...not now.
"I need to know what's changed. Why are you so determined not to be with me all of a sudden?"
There. I'd asked what I needed to know.
"I... I just know this isn't what I want. I'm...I...I'm sorry."
Enough with the fucking apologies already. SHIT! You don't want to be with me. I get that. I can't change your mind. I get that, but stop fucking apologizing.
He went on. "I, I... (exhale) it's just that every time I've been with you...every time we have sex, I feel dirty afterwards, like I've done something wrong. I feel...I feel like I'm going to hell or something."
I watched intently as his face contorted. I could see pain, and hurt. I could see confusion. I knew then that it was hurting him to have to hurt me, but I also knew now that I needed to let him go.
He had just played the trump card; he mentioned "hell". Who was I to argue with religion? What was I supposed to say, `no, you're not going to hell. God loves you.'? There was no competition as far as I was concerned, and a part of me resented Riley for that. He knew my thoughts on religion and sexualities like mine. I couldn't help but feel as if he were purposefully manipulating me; knowing that once he mentioned any aspect of religion, I'd shut down.
"Chase, look... I never wanted to hurt you, honest. I just thought...well, I just thought you'd want to have sex and that would be it, you know? I never really understood the love stuff...I mean, two guys in love? I...I just thought it would be sex."
I must have been looking confused...or maybe even hurt, because he quickly added,
"Look, I wasn't using you or anything, but ...well, it's just that I thought you just wanted to sleep with me, you know?"
No, I don't know. What the fuck! How could he think that I was just in it for the sex? Was he not listening to me, or was he simply using every weapon in his arsenal to make a clean break of it?
"I love you, ASSHOLE...I never said I wanted to just have sex! I NEVER EVEN BROUGHT UP SEX! Shit, it was you who started it, and now you're telling me that you thought that I only wanted sex!...FUCK!!!"
Again, I mentally chastised myself for not having the will to express my thoughts out loud. God knows I wanted to. I felt that fire burning in me again. It had begun to simmer, but all too suddenly I felt it roar to life. I wasn't sure if I could control the rage that seemed imminently explosive; to be honest, I wasn't sure I wanted to control it. But I needed to... He was not going to win this...
Sadly, I realized that this was all a game. It was life, but at the same time, a game. Chess.
While still looking at him I quickly went over our conversation in my head. I took stock of the last few months of our relationship. I replayed the look of his tear filled eyes this evening, him telling me he didn't want to go to hell, and finally, him saying he thought this was all about sex for me.
I felt a sharp pain stabbing at my heart so deeply that for a second I thought I would die. I looked at him...intensely looked at him. I searched his eyes for answers, and deep within him, I saw what I needed to know. What I saw hurt even more.
The tears, they weren't genuine. Deep within his eyes, I saw ... relief. Relief that I wasn't going to push the issue; relief that I wasn't going to fight too hard; relief...that we were done.
I began to wonder if any of what we had was real.
I know the sex was, but what about everything else. I mean, I also knew that he loved me. I couldn't deny that; but was he ever really in love with me?
Almost instantly, I felt a strong surge of resentment. It felt like it was being kindled deep within the balls of my feet and was quickly spreading upwards. Within moments, I was certain that it would seep into my heart... I didn't want that.
I refused to hate him.
If this was all a game to him, then I could turn it into a play. I would act out his script just the way he wanted it. I would play the character he seemed to hope for, and play him well.
I felt myself smile...almost sweetly, but not quite saccharine. I wasn't going to beg anymore. I felt my brain begin to take over. The resentment and the hurt that had begun to threaten my heart began to act as a protective layer. I felt my heart being caged. I would deal with my emotions later... when I was alone. Right now, I would give him what he wanted.
"Ok." I said simply.
That's all I was prepared to say. I had a calm look on my face, but inside everything was screaming. I wanted to cry. I wanted to hit him...to tell him that I felt I had been used. To let him know that I had given him my heart and now he was returning it...used...damage...masticated and in terrible condition. I wanted to slap him; throw him out of my house. I wanted to ...
"That's it? Just... `ok'?" I heard him say, his voice cutting into my thoughts, threatening to shatter the calm disposition of the character I had built at his insistence. I saw the confusion on his face, but I was determined to keep calm.
"Yup, that's it."
I needed to sound nonchalant, like what he was saying didn't bother me. I was hurting, but I wasn't going to lose any more of my dignity. He made known what he wanted extremely clear... anything but me.
He played dirty...he mentioned religion (hell), knowing that I would never argue with religious convictions. We'd had that conversation too many times, so it was impossible for that word to have slipped. It was deliberate, and again I found myself seething at that realization.
He didn't care about me; not the way I cared about him. I had given this relationship my all and in return, I was left feeling like a marionette.
"Chase, are you alright?"
He was beginning to sound nervous. I looked at him, calmly. I wanted him to see that I was calm.
"I...I..." I smiled.
I wanted him to think that I was over it. I couldn't let him see that I was hurting.
"I'm good...I'm all right. I just don't know what to say." I shrugged, laughing nervously.
I felt the left corner of my mouth twitch.
"It's obvious what you want, and to be honest, I want nothing more than for you to be happy."
This had to be the biggest lie ever told...but I did it well.
Now I was the one surprised.
I heard myself say the words, but they weren't the ones I wanted to say. I just wanted him to know that I was giving him what he wanted...not that I wanted him to be happy, but I wanted him to feel that I'd meant them. The character I'd slipped on seemed to have taken over my consciousness.
I had become the marionette, controlled by the strings of my love for him. I couldn't help the sincerity in my well wishes. I couldn't stop the realization that I loved him, even now, knowing what I knew.
Now that I think about it, I really did want him to be happy, even if that happiness could not be found with me.
I got up, and walked over to him. He looked so fragile, almost nervous. As I lifted my arms to hug him, he flinched. I guess he was expecting me to hit him. Not my style though.
I shook my head from side to side, and just smiled. I wanted him to remember me, to remember us on good terms. As I took him into my arms, I squeezed him tight. I felt him rest his head in the crook of my neck. His cheeks felt wet. I could feel his heart beat against my chest, and deep down I knew that this was the last time I would hold him.
"I love you, ok." I whispered as I pulled away.
He tried to hold onto me, but I needed him to know that this was it. Looking into his eyes again, as if it were the last time, I said
"Maybe you should leave now. My parent's are going to be home soon, and maybe I should start dinner. Thanks for being honest with me. K?"
For a second, he looked hurt. "Yo, why can't I stay?"
It amazed me how quickly he had slipped into his street tongue. I guess his grammer didn't matter anymore because we weren't together.
"I'm cool with your parents dawg. You fohgettin' I always here?"
I hated hearing him talk that way.
"Ri..." I saw him cringe. I knew he hated that name, but he also knew that I hated when he spoke street talk around me. I closed my eyes as if composing myself.
"...could you please not talk that way...Ahhh, never mind. It doesn't matter, I guess. Look, I just need time, Ok? I need time to get over this..."
Again, he looked hurt, but what was he expecting. He just broke up with me...shit, HE JUST DUMPED ME!!! And he had the nerve to look hurt because I ask him to leave. Again, I felt taken advantage of.
"Look, I'll see you around, Ok. I'm sorry." I needed him to leave...now. I turned dismissively and walked to the front door, holding it open. He walked towards me; he seemed angry.
I saw the fire in his eyes, and for a brief moment I almost reverted to my passive self; the person I had allowed to govern my relationship with him, thinking that it would keep him hanging around.
"Look Yo, you bein' childish. You said we'd always be friends...and now you tellin' me you need space? Bullshit, yo!"
He was angry. I looked at him. He looked at me. I closed my eyes. I heard him sigh.
"Later yo, I'm out." With that, he was gone.
Ok, so chapter two is done with. This chapter was very ... hmmm...let's go with "inspiring" to write. The thoughts and emotions written about come from a place so deep within me that I even forget they existed. See, I had this boyfriend, and after being together for about four years..lol...yeah. I guess it seems weird for me to write about it, but hey, if I've already written about it indirectly, as well as saying that this story is based on true experiences, why not just come out with the whole truth. I am so disillusioned with life, right now. I'm disillusioned with love, also. I'm in a bad place emotionally, where I think I've had too many of these experiences; too many times. It's my fault though. As I attempt to capture all of this in my writing, feel free to write me and let me know. I know that this story may have some mistakes, and may not be the best written story you've ever read, but hey, cut a guy some slack. firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com (preferred).