The following is a work of fiction. Any similarities are entirely fortuitous. The story may contain profanity and references to gay sex. Any relation to similar events or persons, fiction or real, is completely coincidental. If such content offends you please leave now. The author retains all rights to the story. Do not copy or use without written authority from the author. Write Bobby at with your comments.

Mad World 05

To understand why I'm driving through such an undesirable neighborhood, you must first understand what happened three nights ago in a dream I unfortunately had.

Collin and I finished having sex in a park of some sorts. It wasn't an area I was familiar with, but then again it was a dream. The air was somehow energizing and when I asked Collin to go again, he said "yes." This amazed me given that Jacob didn't ever want to go twice in a row. Of course, I never asked him to go twice in a row-far from the point, though. So, after having sex again, we laid under a tree and talked. This is where things became tricky.

"You're so amazing," Collin gushed.

"I know. I even amaze myself sometimes." I replied smugly. Sadly, I was completely serious.

"Out of all the guys I've slept with, you have been the best." He rolled himself over so that he was lying face down on top of me.

"I've had better,"

For some reason, that statement didn't faze Collin whatsoever. He simply replied, "Who? That Jacob guy?"

Really? That Jacob guy?

"Oh, God no!" I exclaimed dramatically. "He sucked," I remember then Frenching the hell out of Collin. And as if what I said wasn't enough, I added, "I wish I would've met you before Jacob. All that wasted time."

When I woke up the next morning and found Collin snuggled next to me, I was a little upset. I jumped out of bed simultaneously waking him. He wasn't sure what was going on, but he soon came around and realized a possibility. It wasn't obvious or anything given my face was red as an apple or the breathing that came out like sobs.

"Michael, what's wrong?" Collin asked. I recognized the fact that he didn't have any clothes on. Neither did I for that matter.

I grabbed a pair of boxers off the floor and shucked them on.

"Did we have sex?" I breathed out angrily, face still glowing red.

"Yeah, don't you-"

"Did we at least use a condom?"

"No, but I'm-"

"I'm giving you two seconds to put some clothes on and get the fuck out of my house." Collin didn't waste any time in dressing, but I wasn't in the mood to wait. I charged at him, screaming absurd things like "you fucking piece of shit," and "worthless whore."

Collin dodged me and bolted for the front door. Right when he left I broke down like the pathetic person I had become. The rest of that day was spent crying. I felt I betrayed Jacob and could never regain his respect because of the severity of what I did. But then something incredible happened. While bawling and clutching at Jacob's pillow, I had an insight. I came to the conclusion that Jacob wouldn't ever want to see me like that. There was this powerful force in my body that was willing me to get up and be strong. It was like what happened with Collin wasn't frowned upon. That's exactly how it felt. So, with my newfound strength I went back to work the following day. Jumping back into work wasn't easy, and I'll be honest, I struggled the entire day, but once I left for home I knew I accomplished something. Everyone at the office was supportive and very casual, not overbearing in the slightest. The day was normal. When I arrived at the entrance to the complex, I had another insight. What I said to Collin was inexcusable and completely unlike me. I turned the truck around and searched for him. The first two nights were futile attempts, however.

So that's why I'm currently driving through an undesirable neighborhood. I haven't had any luck with any other part of the city. I'm praying for the best. Driving aimlessly has also given me plenty of time to think. For example, my feelings for Collin are so confusing. He's cute and from what I do know of him he's a decent person. But Jacob's been gone less than two weeks and here I am thinking about another person already. The desire for a man's touch is overwhelming. Nothing is sexual, either. I don't need sexual intimacy. I just need to be touched-kissed, hugged, cuddled. The basics are what I need. I'm in the rebound from Jacob, but Collin might be more than that. Who am I kidding, though? Collin probably doesn't even share the same feelings for me. And it is entirely possible that the feelings I possess for him are only rebound.

The night was beginning to wear on me. Sleep deprivation hits hard when it happens. I've been up late with worry the past few nights. Collin's wellbeing is very important to me, which also makes things even more confusing. I was just about to turn back for HQ when I had the most powerful urge to drive down one final street.

Further down the street, I spotted three people walking in the opposite direction. One was further ahead of the other two, who were much taller than the first. The smaller guy turned into an alley, I think. Before following, the two taller guys looked around. My suspicion arose and I decided to just make sure that the smaller guy would be okay. By the time I pulled up to the alley, the two taller guys had the smaller one cornered. Something then caught my eye. The smaller guy was wearing a lime green American Eagle shirt.

It was Collin! That's the shirt I gave to him the night he stayed over.

I slammed on the brakes and rushed to the back to grab a tire iron. When I ran into the alley, the two bastards were harassing him.

"Come on, bitch. We saw you get out of that car. We know you have money, you little whore." the tallest said, giving Collin a shove.

That was my breaking point. "Hey!" I shouted. The aggressors immediately turned around to see who would dare break up their little love fest. "Leave him alone!" Even in the darkness of the alley I could see Collin's face light up with relief.

"Why don't you leave us alone? We're just having a conversation with our friend here." he said loudly, trying to portray authority. He then grabbed Collin under his arm and squeezed him in a friendly manner. But Collin didn't look happy. He looked completely petrified.

Honestly, I was probably more terrified than Collin was. Here I am standing with a tire iron in hand against two would-be gang members. Although it is heavy and can cause a considerable amount of damage, it's still minimal compared to what the two guys could have. But, ah, wait! Whenever I show clients a house, I always have a can of pepper spray attached to my belt, secure and out of sight. My arsenal just became effective.

The creep not holding Collin under his arm moved towards me. He looked ready to pounce, but what a foolish move that would've been. The idea was to just distract me, I'm sure. I was smarter than that, though. With the tire iron in my strong hand, I whipped out the can of pepper spray with my left. I pointed the can at Collin's captor and wielded the iron in front of me, ready for any move they dare made.

The taller guy said, "Aren't you a brave one," I only hardened my glare. "I can see our conversation is over. We will go now." He released Collin, grabbed his partner's arm and walked out of the alley. An idea suddenly popped into mind. The possibility of them returning wasn't improbable so I cautiously walked over to my Xterra. I reversed the truck into the alley providing Collin and I with a line of defense should anyone show up. In fact, I had to climb out through the cargo area because there wasn't enough room to open the doors.

"Collin," I breathed heavily, heart still pounding like mad. "Are you okay? Did they hurt you?"

He was shaking from fright. I took him in my arms and held him tightly. Our warmth bonded and it felt so soothing.

Collin sniffled. "I was so scared,"

"It's okay now," I sighed. "Come home with me. We have something to talk about." I started to move towards the truck, but Collin stubbornly wouldn't move.

"I don't think that's a good idea, Michael." he argued.

"Listen, Collin, what happened that morning... I am so sorry for what I said to you. What happened was I had a very, very bad dream and I blamed you for it without thinking. Please forgive me. I promise I'm not mad at you or anything."

"I still don't think it'd be a good idea."

"Please, Collin," I begged. "Just come home with me and we'll talk about things, okay?" Collin started to inch towards the truck. Under the lighting of the tailgate, I noticed he had a load of markings on his neck. The most predominant of the markings was a hand print that wrapped around his throat. Several bite marks trailed from his ear down to the base of his neck. "What happened to your neck?"

"It's nothing," he said quickly.

"No, who did this to your neck? They left their hand print!" I was angry that someone would actually hurt him.

"Michael, please, it's nothing." When he spoke, he wouldn't look me in the eye. Whoever did this to him is probably just some stranger anyways. Why not just tell me?

I moved his hair away from his neck so I could get a better look. The bruises and teeth marks weren't too bold, but they've had a few days to heal; he didn't have any when he stayed the night.

"Please, Collin," I tried again.

Still with no eye contact, he said, "You did," His voice, so soft and feeble, stung me like a thousand needles.

"I did this to you?" I was shocked. I couldn't believe that I would hurt him. I don't even remember doing anything to him.

"You were really rough. You thought I was Jacob, too."

Then it all came back to me. I do remember thinking it was Jacob underneath me, not Collin. Jacob was the one who liked it rough, not Collin. Even so, I never left markings like that on Jacob regardless. Disgust swirled in my stomach and nausea followed swiftly after. But the only thing I was worried about was getting Collin home and cleaned up.

"Collin, I'm..." I didn't even know what to say. An apology probably would have worked, but the markings said otherwise. Devoid of logic or fear, I moved into Collin until our lips pressed together. The kiss was magical, spontaneous and sweet, no pressure and no regret. "I wish an apology would work, Collin. That night I had a lot to drink and anything I said to you, or did to you, then I'm sorry. And I'm very sorry for what happened the next morning. But let's talk more at the condo, huh? Are you hungry?"

"Mhm," he mumbled.

Back at the condo, I gave another pair of clothes to Collin so he could take a shower. I again made a frozen pizza, but thankfully there was no alcohol. We cleaned out the last bit that night and I haven't been to the store yet. I'm trying to not drink, though, because I've definitely ingested way too much alcohol in the past week.

Collin walked into the kitchen looking like a brand new person albeit the bruises on his neck.

"Why didn't you stop me?" I asked him.

"I sort of tried, but you had my hands pinned." Collin replied, sitting on the same chair he sat on that one night. I noticed he winced when he did.

"Please don't tell me I hurt you down there, too." I was afraid of his answer, even though I already knew what it was.

"You had a lot of pent up frustration. I'm not into the rough stuff, but you were diggin' it so I just kept quiet."

"Collin," I started, "I feel so bad. I'm ashamed that I put a mark on your body, much less several. I swear to you nothing like that will ever happen again!"

Collin looked at me with confusion. "Again?"

I'm not even drunk and I still said something before thinking. Honestly, I do want there to be a next time, but it seems so wrong. Jacob... It's only been a little while. The feelings that are sprouting over Collin shouldn't be happening. None of this should've happened, but...that's just not how I truly feel.

"I don't know how to explain this, Collin." I sat on a chair opposite him. Anxiety was obvious given my fidgeting. "I have feelings for you and they scare the hell out of me. When I woke up and felt you pressed against me, it was so amazing. Well, you know, before I freaked out. I miss having someone, but it's just too early to feel that way, I think. Plus, I'm not even sure how you feel."

"Well," Collin started without even thinking, or maybe he already did, "I've always wanted to be with one person. Being with a different guy all the time who doesn't care much about you other than using you to get off isn't as fun as it sounds." He was joking, I could tell. "You should learn more about me before deciding on your feelings, Michael. I mean, I'm a whore, first off. And I have absolutely nothing to offer you."

"That's not true. You're not a whore, Collin. You do what you have to do in order to survive. I don't think any less of you, especially given what an incredible person you are. Jacob was right about you." Again. Retarded.

"He said that about me?" Collin asked happily.

I went to my room to retrieve the note Jacob left me. Collin doesn't really need to see it, but I figured it would be more sentimental that way. When I came back, he was looking around inattentively. I handed him the note and waited for him to finish.

"He left that for me," I softly spoke. "When I first read it, it made me so...insane. Then when he mentioned you I couldn't figure out what was so special about you." Collin looked to be growing uncomfortable. "Jacob was just a helpful, caring person. I'm beginning to understand why he became friends with you. You really are something else, Collin. You're definitely not what I expected."

An adorable, lopsided smile crept on his face.

"Thanks, Michael,"

The two of us met half way for a hug. Perhaps this is the start of something new. It feels like it is. It feels natural and warm. I feel like this is okay with Jacob. We're not official boyfriends so technically I'm not betraying Jacob, but at the same time we're more than friends, I think. All I know is that I miss having someone to hold and to cuddle with. Does that make me weak? Doubtfully. Collin is already filling a gap in my heart. He'll never replace Jacob, but it would be nice to have him fill in.

"There's something I want to ask you." I said, releasing from the hug. "Would you want to move in with me? I don't know where you're...staying now, but I'm sure you'd like it better here."

Collin seemed pensive. Could it be that he's staying somewhere else? Then again that would defeat the term homeless. Of course, moving in with a complete stranger can make anyone a little uncomfortable.

"Are you sure? I mean, moving in is a big deal and I don't have anything to give back to you. It'll cost you more money to have me here." Collin went on, but I stopped listening. Money means nothing to me. I enjoy it, don't get me wrong, but I enjoy spending it on other people even more.

"Collin, stop," I said, interrupting his run-on. "I don't do well living alone. Having you stay here would be very comforting, especially since..." I couldn't quite say what I wanted to, but from the confirmation on his face I'd say he understood. "Yeah, since that. The thing is I'm so lonely and when I'm with you, Collin, things feel...okay." I blinked back the tears swelling inside of my eyes. There's something about him that soothes me, though, because I don't cry in front of just anyone. I never even cried in front of Jacob. Ever. "And I don't know why that is, but I want to learn."

"Well, I think there are things we both need to learn from each other. Maybe then you'll get your answers. For now, however, let's just take it one day at a time, huh?"

We ate the pizza that was eventually done cooking. He shared some tender moments with me and me with him. The one thing that was never brought up was Jacob. There wasn't a need to ruin such a comfortable moment. Someday, though, I am going to have to come face to face with that uncomfortable topic with Collin. It could be soon or it could be weeks from now, assuming we make it that far.

Around eleven, I told him I needed to head to bed so that I wouldn't be exhausted at work the following day. He was more than ready to sleep as well. Lying in bed with him was a little awkward, but the awkwardness was overpowered in the end when Collin decided to rest an arm across my abdomen and place his head on my chest. At that precise moment, I came to the conclusion of something.

Collin needs me. He lacks human contact, especially in an intimate way. I'm not talking sexually intimacy here. His family abandoned him during his time of need. He needs the compassion of a person that is willing and able to love him. Collin needs that. I'm going to be that person. And I need him. What he can do for me is exactly what I can do for him. I need the same thing as him. I need the physical contact of another person to remind myself that I'm human. Otherwise, if I don't have that contact, guess what is going to happen? Liquor.

The next morning I woke without any trouble. For the first time since Jacob was alive, I was happy to roll out of bed and begin another day. Collin slept peacefully while I showered and ate before heading to the office. Hopefully he'll be okay here by himself for a few hours. Surely he will be, I mean, he is sixteen. There's food and many different drink options-non-alcoholic, of course. And I left a note, which had the time I'd arrive home give or take a few minutes.

I only stopped by the office to gather materials. I'm showing a newlywed couple some houses so hopefully I can secure a little more than their interest today. A sale would definitely boost my morale. For three hours, I drove them to quite a few houses. Either the garage wasn't big enough for him or she didn't like a bathroom. Yes, a bathroom. The coloring was wrong she says. So...can't you just buy some paint? Some people anymore, man.

Two o'clock rolled around and I was sitting in the office reading. I should be going home soon, but a seller is supposed to be calling any second with his decision on an offer. I told Collin I'd be home around this time so hopefully he won't mind if I'm a little bit late. With the grace of God my cell phone rang. Some grace, though.

Mom calling


"Michael, I stopped by your condo a few minutes ago." I sat straight up as soon as she said that. "Would you like to explain who's sleeping in your bed?"

God, that woman is so nosey. She's like freaking Tammy Wetherford. Well, okay, she's not that bad, but it's becoming pretty damn close.

"He's a friend of mine," I said coolly. "He's in a bad place right now so I offered to let him move in."

"Don't you think it's too soon for that, Michael? Jacob's only been..."

"Mom, I know," I interrupted her. "It's not like that, though. I'll bring him with me to the barbeque tomorrow so you and dad can meet him. Just go home and don't think about this, okay?"

She sighed, "All right,"

"Love, bye,"

I can only imagine the whispers that will ensue when mom meets Collin. She was very close with Jacob so this is going to be slightly awkward for her more likely than not. Most of my family will be there, too, and they'll all be talking about me by the end of the night. There's no doubt in my mind that won't happen. But that's all right because there's nothing to gossip about. Collin and I are...friends with serious intentions, I guess. Nothing wrong with that and I feel no shame, nor should I.

April 11 2011

She saw Michael kiss me today. She knows...

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