A word of advice to you, dear reader. This is a story about love between two teenage boys. If that's not your cup of tea, then go to a coffee bar instead. If you are underage, whatever that means wherever you live, then please leave. If you don't leave, then don't get caught. If you get caught, then don't blame me. I did warn you. Now then, if you're still here I guess you're going to read the story. Please take a minute or two afterwards to tell me what you thought. My e-mail is email@example.com.
Chapter 1: Breathtaking News
My mind is always at its most active when I lie down to sleep. I run through the day's events, or tomorrow's, piecing together the string of happenings that make up life. I think a lot about love. In fact, it's the most common subject of my musings. All right, second most common, but don't expect me to reveal number one. I'm always in love. That's my biggest problem. I fall in love oh so easily, but unfortunately, I'm slow to fall out of it. Which of course used to lead to a lot of heartache. Yes, used to. Heartaches are no longer a problem to me. But I'm getting ahead of the story...
I was fourteen when it all began. The summer holidays had just started. Slowly mending from a terrible crush I had on a guy in my swimming team, I was... Yes, I did say a guy. I knew early on in my life that I had little interest in girls. Fortunately, my mom is pretty cool, and never had a problem with it, so I didn't have to hide my feelings at home. Dad wasn't overly happy when I told him, but I don't much care, since he moved out on us when I was four. What he thinks doesn't matter. Anyway, I was having one of my nightly sessions, staring at the ceiling through a blur of tears as I thought about Jim. He was new at my school, and had turned out to be a swimming star. As a team member, I had a lot of time to drool over his lean, hairless body, fantasising at night about what I managed to glimpse in the showers and the dressing room. Which was quite a lot. The rest of us, ranging from tiny twelve year-olds to dashing seventeens, were usually pretty self-conscious, but Jim strutted around naked with his goodies on display as if there was nothing to it. Well, you know what they say about swimmers, and at my school, it was more true than average, which meant some of us suddenly turned to face the wall when he walked in. Unfortunately, none of the guys who were openly gay, or whom I suspected to be, were my type. No, I go for the hotties, those guys who turn heads wherever they go, the guys who'd make the pope horny. So naturally I fell hard for Jim, and naturally, I got bruised when I landed. My midnight musings were full of Jim for weeks, my mind returning to the shower room every time I... well, you-know-what. I was deeply in love, already picturing the two of us as life-long lovers. I mean, showing off like that to the rest of us guys, he must've been interested, right? Wrong! One day when we were competing against a neighbouring school, there was a girl in the audience, who cheered so loudly for Jim that I thought she'd bring the ceiling down. She broke my concentration, making me lose my race, and I disliked her instinctively. While I was waiting for my second race, I glanced at her, noticing that she looked a little like Jim, and my hopes went back up. Maybe she was his sister, and thus no rival. Wrong again. Once the competition was over, she ran up to him, and they kissed deeply. On her way, she trampled my heart, and trod on my soul, crushing them both. Mom knew the signs, and thankfully let me have a good cry before she tried to comfort me. It didn't work, anyway. Usually when I fall for a new guy, I find out pretty soon that they're straight, but this time I had been so sure it was the right time, and I got really depressed in the days to come. Well, you know how it goes; I recovered with time, and soon I was all but completely over him. Okay, I'm lying a little here. It still stung as hell when I saw his girlfriend clinging to his neck like some damn vine of poison ivy. I had to clench my fists and look away, to avoid strangling her. Or drowning her. In between my fantasies of Jim, I fantasised of murder. Jealousy was too mild a word. So, to sum it up, I was still recovering from a crush and a crushed heart, when I had the carpet pulled away from underneath my feet, and my whole life changed forever. After a day of hanging out with my friends, I went home for dinner, still feeling pretty low.
"Davey, we need to talk."
The minute I stepped in through the kitchen door, I knew something was up. Mom was wearing her best please-don't-be-mad-at-me look, as she ushered me to sit down at the table. There were more alarm bells ringing. She had made the table, which was usually my chore, and set us up for a roast beef and potato salad dinner. My favourite. But what really made me want to run screaming from the house was the fact that she called me Davey. That was a nickname reserved for when I was feeling hurt, depressed or just cuddly. Her pet name for me. She never used it like this, except for when she'd had a call from school. Not that she gets them often, mind you, I'm a good boy. All right, I lied again, I'm not a stranger to trouble. But this time I knew I hadn't done anything, and I had the words `Mom, I'm framed!' rolling on my tongue. However, I decided to hear her out before I started defending myself. She sat down next to me, not across the table as she usually does, laying her arm around my shoulder. At this time, I guess my distress had become tangible, because she stroked my cheek, giving me a reassuring smile that, to me, looked like something the cat would flash the mouse, before devouring it.
"Mom, am I in trouble?" I managed to keep my voice steady, but only just. "Whatever I did, I didn't do it."
"No, Davey, you're not in trouble, not that I know of. I've just got something important to tell you."
"You know I've been transferred from accounts to admin, right?"
"Of course I do! Mom, talk to me or I'll start chewing on the linoleum!"
"I'm sorry, my boy." She hugged me tightly, and I knew the end of the world was coming. "I just don't know how to tell you this."
"You've been fired? We're being evicted?"
"No! Just let me finish."
"Gladly." I broke out of her hug and stared into her eyes. They were the same as mine; large and blue, and completely unable to hide her emotions. She was scared, and distressed. "Mom, talk to me, please!"
"I... I've met somebody. A guy at admin, Ronald Bradley, he's as sweet as they come. Davey, I'm in love."
"Congratulations!" I felt a ton of anxiety fall off my back. "So why were you so upset?"
"Well, you see..." She looked away, as if she was ashamed.
"Mom, what's wrong!?"
"I'm pregnant, too."
"You're...?" For a second, my head swam, and I thought I was going to faint. My mom, pregnant? A bun in the oven? I was going to be a big brother! I whooped with joy, tossing myself around her neck. "Mom, that's great! When's the... deliverance?"
"The doctor said mid-November." She hugged me back. "I'm so glad you're not mad at me."
"Why would I? I've always wanted a kid brother. Or sister. Whatever. Why not twins?"
"Don't get carried away!" She laughed, kissing my cheek. "I know for a fact it's only one, but I asked the doctor not to tell me the sex. It'll be a surprise."
"Wow." I sat back down, resting my head in my hands. "Mom, it sure is a surprise."
"But that's not all..."
"Ronald and I are talking about getting married." She grinned meekly, her eyes still betraying her worry about my reaction. "What do you think?"
"Well..." To tell the truth, I wasn't overly thrilled with the idea of sharing my mom with a stranger, but then again, if she liked him he couldn't be all bad. Just to prolong her agony a little, I put on a frown, scowling as I pretended to think about rejecting the idea. Naturally, she saw through it as soon as she looked into my eyes. We both broke out into happy smiles, and hugged again. "Whatever makes you happy, mom. I promise to give the guy an honest chance."
"There's more still. You said you wanted a kid brother..."
"How about a big brother?"
"Stop confusing me."
"Davey, Ronald's divorced, too, and he's got a son from his first marriage. His name is Alex, and he's seventeen. He'll move in with us, too, if all goes well. Ron's talking to him about it tonight."
"Well, I suppose I'll give him a chance, too." A big brother! True, a big step-brother, but anyway! What if he was good-looking? Our house wasn't too big, maybe we'd get to share rooms. That could be...
"Wipe that grin off your face, boy!" She gave me a mischievous wink. "You'd better not be planning to molest my future stepson!"
"Mom!!" I felt my face turn crimson. "I wasn't... I mean..."
She giggled, then leaped out of my way as I pounced at her. We chased each other around the kitchen, until she did just about the only thing that could stop me from further attacks. She opened the lid of the bowl of potato salad. I stopped dead in my tracks, and quickly sank down on my chair, grabbing fork and knife. Laughing, she served me a liberal helping, then sat down to eat, as well.
"I'm glad you're taking this well," she said. "I was so afraid you'd be... apprehensive."
"Well, I can't say I'm anything but shocked. It'll be a whole new life."
"I was thinking about letting Alex and you share your room to begin with, but..."
"I fear for his modesty."
"Mom, do you want my plate in your face?" I blushed again, but couldn't help grinning. Yes, my mother is a cool woman, but she can be a terrible tease. "Is he cute?"
"Ron? He's a dream! A body to die for, and such a handsome face."
"I take it you've seen all of his body, then." This time, she was the one who blushed a deep, deep red. Another trait we share. I couldn't resist teasing her a bit more. "Or were you planning to tell me the stork was paying us a visit?"
"Anyway, I wasn't asking about Ron." Her immediate smile set me off, and we were starting to look like a couple of traffic lights. "Is Alex cute?"
"Well, Maybe your ol' mom shouldn't be talking like this, but yes. He's cute. Not as muscled as his father, but he has a nice smile."
"A nice smile?"
"Yes, a nice smile."
"Oh, seventeen years old, an even six feet tall, brown hair, brown eyes, glasses. Maybe a couple of pounds overweight, but it actually suits him. He looks... cuddly."
"Yep. Not the athlete type, but he's smart and sociable. And like I said, he's got a nice smile."
"And his... preferences?"
"Davey, please! You don't think I've asked him if he's gay?"
"No! If you want to know, you ask. But he showed me his room, and he had a framed photograph on his bedside table, showing him arm in arm with a cute blond girl. So don't go getting your hopes up too much, okay?"
"Okay. Thanks for telling me. I really don't need false hopes right now."
"Still hurting, is it?" I nodded, feeling tears well up in my eyes. "Come here."
I sat down in her lap and let her hug me, and suddenly it was as if all my troubles melted away. She has this magical ability to soothe away just about anything, just by being there. I was about to tell her how much I loved her, when she pinched my butt, making me squeal as I jumped to my feet.
"Mom! What was that for?"
"For thinking naughty thoughts about poor Alex." She grinned as I blushed again.
"I wasn't! Not particularly naughty."
"Well, be that as it may. I just hope you'll like him, even if he isn't the athlete demi-god ton of muscles you usually go for."
"Please! I look for inner beauty, for a poet's soul and a mild, loving heart."
"In sports stars?"
"Yeah. Won't hurt if inner beauty comes in a nice package."
"My middle name."
"So you say, David Allen Jones. I happen to know your middle name."
That night, I lay awake for hours. I had much to digest, and since there was no school, I knew I could sleep in the next day. I had a feeling mom would let me, too. So I was getting a stepfather, and a stepbrother. Not to mention there'd be a baby in the family in less than half a year. My head kept spinning around in circles, but fortunately this also kept me from moping about Jim. For the first time in weeks, I felt like there was life ahead of me. I tried to picture Alex in my mind, but the image wouldn't really come. Despite how mom had described him, I was picturing him as a hunk, blond and blue-eyed, queer as a six-dollar bill and madly in love with me from the moment he laid eyes on me. Needless to say, my musings took a more carnal route after that, but at least I could go to sleep afterwards.