I've been real upset at how it took so long for the people in New Orleans who were flooded out by hurricane Katrina then Rita to get taken care of. So I decided to write this story “Escaping Katrina”. See chapter 1 for a longer introduction that explains more about why I decided to write this story. While it is loosely based on these real incidents that I saw on TV in my AP U.S. History class and read in the newspaper, it is a work of fiction. The events I depict did not happen, and the people are completely the product of my imagination.
This story is Copyright © 2005 by Colin Kelly. It cannot be reproduced without express written consent. The Nifty Archives has written permission to publish this story. No other rights are granted.
This story contains scenes of explicit consensual sex between minors. If reading this type of material is illegal where you live, or if you are too young to read this type of material based on the laws where you live, or if your parents don’t want you to read this type of material, or if you find this type of material morally or otherwise objectionable, or if you don't want to be here, close your browser now. The author neither condones nor advocates the violation of any laws. If you want to be here, but aren't supposed to be here, be careful and don’t get caught!
Kendal laughed. “You have any idea how long we’ve been asleep?”
“I guess like a few minutes?”
“It’s almost six-o-clock-in-the-p-of-m!”
I sat up and looked down at him. “No fuckin’ way!”
“Yes, fuckin’ way! Look!”
He twisted his left wrist so I could see his watch. It read 5:57.
“Your folks must be wondering where you are! Will you be in trouble?”
“No, I usually wander around or go outside or come here most of the time. They expect me to be gone.”
“Well, I hope Lincoln isn’t worried that I’ve been kidnapped or ran off or something.”
“Lincoln… oh, you mean my grandpa, not my little brother. Well, let’s get up and get dressed and see if we can find them in the commissary for dinner and grandpa can see that you’re alive. Plus I’m hungry!”
“I am too. After all that exercise!”
We laughed and hugged, then got up and got dressed. Getting out of Kendal’s secret place was harder for me. It seemed the space between the bleachers and the wall had gotten smaller or I’d gotten fatter, and I got kinda stuck but Kendal prodded and pushed me and I finally squeezed through.
Lincoln and Kendal’s family and his cousins were in the commissary at one table. They had saved us a couple of seats.
Patrice looked at us. “You’ns are both a mess. Where you boys been? Been bein’ doin’ nasty with each other or somethin’?” She burst into laughter, and so did everyone else at the table. I was shocked and embarrassed, and I was blushing big time. I could tell because my ears were hot and they get hot and red when I’m blushing big time. I also realized that my mouth was hanging open, so I closed it.
“Mama, we just were sleeping. Both of us were tired, specially Cody ‘cause he just got here from that long bus ride with grandpa.”
“Well, if you’re gonna be messin’ around with that boy you be careful that no one sees you! And you, too, Cody Williams!” I blushed even more! She was saying we were messing around with each other, having sex!
“Yes, mama. We’re gonna get our dinner now.”
Kendal grabbed my arm and dragged me off toward the food line. “Don’t mind mama, she’s just always looking after me.”
I whispered, “She knows you’re gay? She thinks that I’M gay? She thinks we were messing around having SEX?”
“Sure. Why not? I told here when I started messing with my friend Miller. That way if she came into my bedroom when we were messing around she wouldn’t be surprised by it. She’s OK with it. My uncle, mama’s brother, is gay, and a couple of my cousins are gay. Lots of folks in our family are gay and no one cares.”
“Shit, that’s un-fucking-believable! I always figured if someone’s parents found out they were gay they’d throw them out or beat the shit out of them or have them locked up in a metal hospital or something.”
“Not my folks”
“Kendal, you lied to your mother. She asked you if we were being nasty with each other, and in my book that means messing around, and you said we were just sleeping!” I don’t like to outright lie, maybe just not tell the whole truth sometimes.
“I didn’t lie to her. What I said was ‘we JUST were sleeping,’ see, the ‘just’ was in front of the ‘were’ not in back of it, and that’s like saying ‘most recently we were sleeping’ and skips what we might or might not have been doing before ‘we just were sleeping’.”
I looked at him with a new respect. “Kendal, you are one a real smart kid! I would never have come up with that! That’s very sneaky! I love it!”
He giggled. “Hey, look, they have fried chicken! My favorite!”
We grabbed our trays and got our food and returned to the table. There was no more talk about us messing around, but I had to tell my life story again. Everyone seemed sad about my mom and dad, and they hoped I would find Granny, and they were totally nice and friendly. It was like I had become a member of their family.
Lincoln was saying he wanted to move him and me to cots next to his family, but Arnold told him they were all in use and that no one would be willing to trade. Kendal looked up. “Hey, grandpa, how about I swap with you. That way you can be with the rest of the family and Cody and I can talk and play games on my PSP. OK?”
Of course, Patrice had to put in her two cents worth. “Yeah, and then you two can snuggle together!” She burst into laughter, then the whole family did, then Kendal and I did too, even so I was blushing again. People at other tables looked around to see who was finding something to laugh about, and a few gave us dirty looks. That’s when I realized that there wasn’t much laughter among all the other people in the Astrodome. Most of them were pretty glum, they had probably lost their homes and everything in them, maybe their pets, and maybe family members and friends too. No jobs, no money, nothing to laugh about. I felt embarrassed and sad.
“Well, Kendal, that there is a mighty fine idea. You are the smart one in this family.” Lincoln looked at Patrice and grinned. “Not sure where you got your smarts, though!” Everyone burst out laughing, and for once Patrice was the one who blushed!
“Thanks, grandpa! We’ll move my stuff right now! Can you help us?”
“Sure thing, grandson. Let’s get it done. I’ve got a lot of jawing to do with your daddy and mama and cousins about what we’re gonna do next.”
We got up and emptied out the stuff in Kendal’s locker. I was surprised that he had so much, and I asked him about that.
“We got out right away when the mayor said we should evacuate. So we took lots of the good stuff from home to one of those locker places over in Lafayette, and packed what we’d need to live on in the SUV, and picked up my cousins and drove here to Houston. When we got here they had just opened the Astrodome, so we were able to move in here and find cots so we can be all together. My folks want to stay here for a while until they figure out what to do. I took my computer, my PSP and all my games, and books to read, and school books and stuff, and clothes of course.”
“Wow, you’re lucky you could bring all that stuff with you. I have my computer and some books and a few clothes and pictures of Granny and my folks and some of my friends. It’s all crammed into my backpack.”
Lincoln and I helped Kendal carry his stuff and we set him up in what had been Lincoln’s cot and locker. He and Lincoln exchanged locker keys, and Lincoln took his small handful of clothes.
“Grandpa, we have to tell the Red Cross people that we moved. Let’s go over there now, you can drop off your clothes on the way.”
“OK, let’s do it! You comin’ too, Cody Williams?”
I grinned at Lincoln, still calling me Cody Williams. “Yeah, and I can check if they found out anything about my Granny.”
When we got to the check-in table the same lady we had talked to this morning was at one end of the table where there were a couple of chairs set next to her at the end. “Cody? Is that Cody Williams?”
“Yes, ma’am.” I walked over to her, and Lincoln and Kendal went to someone else to tell about their swapping cots and lockers.
“Sit down, please, Cody.”
I sat down. “Ma’am, did you find out anything about my Granny?”
She looked at me and reached out and took my hands in hers. I knew instantly that it was going to be bad news and the tears started flowing down my cheeks.
“Your Granny passed away the day she was rescued. She had a heart attack, and even if she had been in a hospital she would have passed.”
I pulled my hands back and covered my eyes, and began crying.
“I’m so sorry, Cody. There was nothing anyone could do. The report I have says she passed in her sleep, so she didn’t have any pain. I’m sure she’s in heaven looking down and helping to protect you.”
I sobbed out a “Thank you ma’am” and continued to cry.
Kendal and Lincoln saw that I was crying. Kendal rushed over, kneeled on the floor in front of me, and took me in his arms. I buried my face in his shoulder and continued to cry.
I heard the Red Cross lady explain about Granny. Lincoln put his hands on my shoulders and started softly massaging them. “We’ll take care of you, Cody Williams. You just cry and be sad for your Granny.”
We stayed like this for a few minutes, then I took some deep, shuddering breaths and sort of regained myself. “Thank you, Lincoln. I don’t know what I’d do without you and Kendal and your family. I’m so scared about what’s going to end up happening to me!”
“The Carters are going to take care of you, you never mind about nothing! If we have to we’ll adopt you.”
That made me burst into tears again. These people, who I didn’t even know until yesterday and today, were willing to take me in and even adopt me into their family. I hugged Kendal, then stood and hugged Lincoln and cried into his chest.
Patrice came running up. I don’t know how she knew something sad had happened, but it was like a magnet for her! “What’s happened, why is Cody cry’in?”
“Cody’s Granny passed away, mama.”
With that Patrice burst into tears, and pulled me away from Lincoln and hugged me tight to her ample bosom. She sobbed, “Oh, you poor, poor dear boy! Why can’t God keep things good for a young boy? Oh, that’s so sad! Kendal, you have to look after Cody, hear me? Anything happen to this boy, I’ll beat your black butt until it’s red! Understand? He only has us now, and you’re the closest to him, so it’s your responsibility!”
She pushed me away and into Kendal’s arms. By now I’d stopped crying, but it still felt good to be held by him.
Lincoln was talking to the Red Cross lady. “What can we do about this, ma’am?”
“Well, it depends on whether he has any relatives who can take him in. Cody, where are your relatives?”
I told her that Granny had been my only relative.
She turned to Lincoln. “Well, Mr. Carter, it depends on whether you’re going to take custody of Cody in Texas or wait until you move back to Louisiana or to somewhere else. You should decide on where you’re going to settle, because if you or anyone else in your family are appointed his guardian or foster parents you’ll have to stay in that state. States are very possessive about turning children over to someone for guardianship or foster parenthood.”
Lincoln nodded. “We’re gonna be meeting together to decide what to do. I don’t think we can move back to New Orleans, much as I want to, ‘cause it just ain’t gonna be fixed up for folks to live in for some long time in my opinion. And thanks for the advice, ma’am.”
To be continued…
I hope you like this story, and if you have comments, suggestions, or questions, email me!