The Smile is a story about gay teenagers who are discovering their sexuality. If sex between male teenagers is offensive to you, illegal for you to read or if you are underage then you should move on to something else.
The Smile is a work of pure fiction -- the characters and the events do not represent any person or situation. Copyright © 2003-2004 by Reader of Tales, all rights reserved. You may contact me by firstname.lastname@example.org. Note this is a new email address once again.
~Reader of Tales, Jan 12, 2004
The Smile - Chapter 4 - Questions
Ian just sat there stunned. He didn't know what to do. This was the last thing he'd expected to have happen and he didn't know how to react. He wasn't even sure what he was feeling.
His first reaction scared him to death. He actually enjoyed the kiss. There was electricity in the touch of Kyle's lips against his. He was actually disappointed that the kiss had ended so quickly. But this wasn't right. Guys weren't supposed to kiss other guys.
He had always liked girls. He remembered the first time he'd stolen a kiss with a girl - it was at a birthday party. The two of them were alone in the hallway upstairs. He'd just come out of the bathroom and she was waiting there. They looked at each other and then she stepped forward and kissed him. He remembered thinking to himself at the time that it was OK but really, what was the big deal.
Now he wasn't sure what to think. Did he like girls? Yes. But what was this sudden feeling he was having for Kyle? He was so confused.
Robert sat on his bed with his head in his hands. He was confused about what he'd just heard downstairs. How could this have happened to his brother? And, this had caused Andy to almost commit suicide? That really bothered Robert a lot. He remembered the comment his dad had made at Kyle's birthday last year. "Only homos cry. You're 15 years old now. Time to get tough." Now he understood Andy's reaction to his dad's jibe. He also understood Kyle's reaction as well.
Robert was 12 years old but he understood what the problems were that faced his brother and Dan from here on in. The sermon at church two weeks ago was about homosexuality being an abomination. That at least explains Andy's actions after the service. He was rude - just ran out of the church. They found him at home later that day - no explanation. Then the next day to be in bed sick, they all thought that explained the actions of the day before but Robert now saw them in a different light.
How could this have happened to Andy? Why had God done this and then demand that he not give in to his feelings? There must be some mistake.
Kyle sat there wondering why Ian didn't just get it over with. He was expecting a slap or a fist in the face. Anything but this silence. But he couldn't look up to see what was going on.
He didn't know what had come over him. Well, actually he did but he couldn't understand why he'd given in so completely. Why couldn't he have stopped himself before it was too late? Now it was over. His friendship was over. And how could he face Ian in Band, now? He was supposed to be helping with his training.
He knew something like this would happen. That first night at band he'd thought to himself that this was a dangerous way to be thinking and he was right.
And Ian was just sitting there. What was he thinking now? All the possibilities of what would be told at school on Monday started to pass through Kyle's head. He was a dead man now. There was no way this was gonna be just a rumor. He was gonna be killed. What could he do about it now?
Andy looked at Dan and voiced the question he saw in Dan's eyes as well, "Now what do we do?".
Dan was at a loss for words. They hadn't planned on telling anyone about them being gay just yet. In fact they hadn't even planned if they would tell someone. "I suppose it was just a matter of time before our families found out. Looks like that decision has just been made for you. And who knows what that will lead to."
"But what should we do about it? My parents aren't gonna be too happy about this. You heard what our church believes and my dad implied that 'homos' were not welcomed in his house on several occasions. I don't know what's gonna happen but I'm more than just a little nervous about this at the moment."
"Look on the bright side. Whoever it was didn't come storming in here yelling about what was said." Dan paused for a moment, thinking. "Who could it be? What if it was your mom?"
"I guess perhaps she'd want to talk with dad about it first. Or maybe she doesn't agree with dad. I don't know. I would have expected her to confront me directly but perhaps she is gonna wait 'till after you leave. I don't know."
"I guess if it was your dad we'd know? Or do you think he would have waited to talk about it later as well?"
"Perhaps but given that he said something in front of my best friend last year at my birthday about 'homos', I would have expected him to come barging in instead of leaving."
"That leaves your brother. Did you see that look he gave us at dinner? I bet it was him. What do you think he would he do?"
"I'm not sure. He's never said anything when dad makes his comments but then he is usually quiet about anything that might get dad goin'. He used to tell on me a lot when we were younger but he hasn't done that for a while. I guess he might just keep it to himself. I really don't know. We haven't really been close for the last year or so."
"Well," Dan was thinking, "I guess for now we should just wait. But we probably should be careful about what we do tonight. I want to sleep cuddled up with you but I'm not sure that would be wise."
"Wait a minute, I'd like a say in that." With that, Andy stood up and walked over to the door and locked it. "There, now no one can barge in on us unexpectedly."
Dan just sat there smiling. "I'm glad one of us is thinking. I've waited all day to hold you in my arms and here I thought I was gonna miss out."
With that Dan pulled Andy into his arms and they just relaxed into the couch. It felt so good to be held like this, thought Andy. I could stay like this for the rest of my life. "I like this," he said. "If we never do anything else other than this I could be happy."
"I know what you mean. It feels too good to hold someone like this, like I was meant to be here with you. I guess I was." Dan stopped to think a moment. He wanted so much to read poetry to Andy at this moment but his mind was a blank - not to mention that he had always hated poetry. "Andy, I love you so much. I can't believe I am here with you."
Ian looked up at Kyle. He realized what Kyle must be feeling at this moment and decided not to over-react. But he wasn't sure what to tell him. He still wanted to be friends but it scared him to think of anything else. Now, after this, he realized that anything was gonna be hard.
Kyle was still looking away. Could he be crying? He couldn't tell for sure. The last thing he wanted to do was hurt Kyle.
Should he tell him what he was feeling? And what would he say? He decided that he wasn't ready to cross that bridge, perhaps later on. He'd just have to wait and see how he felt after tonight.
It was Kyle who finally broke the silence. "Listen, I'm sorry about that. I don't know what came over me. I'm so embarrassed. It won't happen again. Honest."
As Kyle looked up he was relieved to see that Ian was just sitting there, not looking angry or upset, but calm. Kyle was relieved but didn't know what to do next.
Now it was Ian who broke the silence that threatened to overtake them once again. "Don't worry about it Kyle. I'm not upset. I'm a little surprised but not upset." With that Ian gave him a little smile.
Kyle smiled back but was still not sure what Ian was thinking. "You still wanna sleep over? I'll understand if you want to go home, now."
"No, that's fine. Like I said, I was just surprised. We're still friends, aren't we?"
"Sure. I'd like that," Kyle replied, relieved. And with that the settled down to sleep. Kyle took the floor and gave his bed to Ian.
It took quite a while for Robert to fall asleep that night. He couldn't stop thinking about Andy and Dan and what they were doing downstairs. There was no way he would spy on them again. That was a mistake, he realized, that he would not make again.
What was bothering him at the moment was how he felt. He liked girls. They really turned him on. Every time he thought of a girl he liked he got this feeling in his stomach, not to mention other places. That brought a smile to his face.
But what about guys? He'd never thought about that before. Could he like a guy like that? He thought about Andy and Dan and wondered what it was like. What did they feel? Had Andy felt something similar for Kyle? What about Kyle? Now that he thought about it there was something there between Andy and Kyle before they moved. And they both seemed pretty upset when they found out we had to move.
So, what did Robert feel about guys? He wasn't sure. He hadn't thought about guys like that before now. But it didn't scare him. The more he thought about it the more he was comfortable with Andy's and Dan's relationship. He couldn't explain why.
His mom's and dad's reaction was another thing altogether. He'd never heard his mom say anything but his dad had definitely not been kind in his remarks.
And what about what the bible said about it? If they continued to go to church that was definitely gonna be a problem. But as far as Robert was concerned it was OK. He'd have to do something to help his brother. But what?
Dan sat next to Andy at church. He wanted so much to put his arm around Andy as the preacher talked about sin. If only he could hold Andy's hand but he couldn't risk it, especially at church. The preacher was making it clear that this wasn't right as far as God was concerned.
He'd just read something from the bible that said "homosexual offenders" would not, um, what did he say, something like "will not inherit the kingdom of heaven". The preacher went on to say that they would go to hell instead.
Dan really didn't like this guy. The rest of the people were great. But this guy was really scaring Dan. He could tell that Andy wasn't comfortable about being here at all. Robert looked like he was taking it all in. He was even taking notes. Great, thought Dan. He's gonna start preaching to us now, too.
After the service, Dan and Andy decided to walk home instead of riding with Andy's family. They left the service almost immediately avoiding talking to the preacher after the service was over.
"Andy," Dan started, "I will go with you every week so you don't have to be alone. There was something about that preacher that I didn't like, other than his message."
"I know what you mean. I was really enjoying the service the first time I went until he started to speak. It's like he enjoys making people feel bad."
"Yeah, something like that." He paused before continuing, "You know, I really enjoyed just holding you last night. It was really special. I hope you don't think I'm weird but I think I'd like to keep it to cuddling and holding each other for a while. No sex until we are ready."
Andy was silent for a moment. He thought about what Dan was saying. He'd really enjoyed last night too. He'd been looking forward to more but realized just how special his time with Dan had been and had to admit to himself that he didn't really miss the rest.
"I agree with you Dan. It was real special. And I really did enjoy it. I think I can wait, especially if it means waiting for that special moment. I'd hate for it to be all sex and then we decide to leave each other."
They beat the rest of the family home which gave them one more opportunity to hug each other tight. It was hard to believe that only two nights ago they had held each other for the first time. It was hard to believe that so much had happened in so short a time.
Andy looked at Dan and said, " I can't believe I have a boyfriend. It's like a dream come true. When I looked at you that first day of school I dreamed of a day like today when I could hold you and tell you how much I love you, when I could tell you how cute I thought you were that day - how cute I think you are today. Thanks for going to church with me. It was easier with you there, even if I couldn't hold onto you for dear life. Just having you there was enough for now."
Dan kissed Andy with such passion that they melted into one another. Then he paused and said, "I understand what you mean. I don't think it has quite hit me that I have a boyfriend, either. When I first saw you at the bus stop I had that same thought about you. You looked to cute and vulnerable. I just wanted to run up to you and take you into my arms and hold you. If I had known what you were thinking that day I probably would have. I'm so glad I have you in my life, Andy. And, I am honored to be able to go to church with you."
With that they stole one last hug before they heard the door open upstairs.
Kyle and Ian slept in until almost noon. Ian woke up first and immediately remembered what had happened the night before. He still wasn't sure what to do about it. He had lots of questions - both for Kyle and himself. And, he wasn't sure he wanted to hear his answers.
As he sat thinking about what to say, he heard Kyle stir. He turned around to look at a very sleepy eyed boy who at the moment looked like an angel. What was he thinking? He had to get this under control. It was starting to really scare him.
"How did you sleep? Was my bed comfortable enough?"
"Yeah, how was the floor?" Ian replied.
"Well, a little uncomfortable but I'm used to camping and that is worse. Mind if I come up and sit beside you now, though?"
"No problem. It's your bed."
Ian looked away and then back at Kyle. "Kyle, would you mind if I ask you some questions about, ah, what happened last night?"
Kyle looked at Ian tentatively. "I guess so."
"Don't worry. I'm not upset. Really."
"OK. What did you want to know?"
"Well, have you ever, I mean, well, you know, kissed a girl?"
Kyle answered back, shyly, "No. In fact, other than my mom and dad, you are the first person that I have ever kissed. How about you?"
"Only once. It was a couple of years ago. I don't really remember it much."
Ian paused to think about what he wanted to ask next. "Do you think about girls in that way? I mean, like, being with them, hugging and kissing and stuff like that?"
Kyle was a little nervous now. What should he say? He'd thought about it but wasn't really sure that he was interested in girls anymore. He'd finally started to think that maybe he wasn't normal.
"Well," he started, "I used to think about girls a lot but that was when my friends were talking about them. Now that I think about it I wondered what all the fuss was about them. So, I suppose, I mean, I guess I'd have to say no."
"What about boys? Do you think of boys that way?"
"I don't know," he started. He'd thought about this one a lot lately. He'd definitely started thinking of Andy that way just before he left, or perhaps even before that but just hadn't understood what that meant.
"I used to think about my best friend in that way but I never knew what that meant. And it scared me a lot. I mean, it isn't normal, is it? And now, lately, I've been wondering, I mean, when I saw you, I really started to get confused. I mean, I know that guys are supposed to like girls but I don't feel that way about girls. I think I'm confused."
Robert realized what he had to do. He loved researching things on the internet and so he'd do what he could to help his brother and Dan out. There's got to be something out there that explains all of this, he thought. And, perhaps it will answer some questions about why this has happened.
He was still not sure how to tell if he was gay or not. Did Andy know at my age, he wondered?
His research took him to a number of sites. Some claimed that there is evidence that genetics played a factor in the determination. Others denied that evidence saying that it was a choice.
Then he came across a website with testimonials from hundreds of gay men and even some women who were lesbians. All of them described how they had no choice in how they felt. Many had had to deal with families who were not happy about their "decision" to be gay. Many suffered from any number of abuses from society, family and church.
One common comment from all of them was that if they had had a choice, why would they have chosen this? "Why, when society, family and religion, in general, shun what we are, would we choose this way of life?"
Robert thought about that one for quite a while. Can I choose? he thought. Would I choose to love another boy? Is there another boy that I feel that way about or could feel that way about?
He even tried to think of kissing his best friend of 5 years but could not stir the same feelings as those of him kissing a girl. That gave him the confidence that he hadn't realized he'd needed. He was not gay.
He also read that there was something called bi-sexual where someone could have feelings for both boys and girls and that those feelings could be more for one than the other. There were even theories that everyone could fit on a scale from one to ten, where one was gay and ten was straight, which means "not gay". Therefore, someone who was a 3 could like girls but would prefer boys.
That made a lot of sense to him. And it explained a lot of things that he had wondered about since hearing Andy and Dan speaking. Also, he was starting to believe the theories about genetics. I mean, he thought, if we have no choice in the matter, then there must be something to make us that way.
He also found a lot of information on the bible. It seems that many gays are also religious. His search led him to some books at the library which he would read in a secluded section so as not to be found out by others. The last thing he needed was to draw attention to what he was doing.
Kyle was still looking at Ian. "What about you? Do you like girls or boys?"
Ian said, "Until today I liked girls. I'd never even thought about boys that way. I admit that when I first saw you something happened that I didn't understand, in fact, I'm not sure I even noticed it. I just knew that I had to be your friend.
"Now, I don't know. I think there is something more. In fact, if I think about some of the boys in my classes I think that perhaps I could feel something like that with boys as well.
"And, that really scares me. I'm not sure I'm ready to be like that."
"Like what?" asked Kyle.
"Gay or bi-sexual," Ian replied. "I've read about it before but never really thought about it, I mean, about me being gay or bi-sexual."
"What is bi-sexual? You mean like being both sexes?"
"No, it means liking both. If I had to think about myself liking both boys and girls, then I would be bi-sexual. But I think I would have to choose girls. It would be a lot easier, that's for sure." He smiled trying to ease the tension a bit.
"Then I must be gay," said Kyle, "because I can't think of a girl that I feel like that about. But then I've only ever felt like this about my best friend, Andy, who moved away, and now you."
**** Please read this ****
In The Smile, both Andy and Kyle think about ending their own lives to solve the loneliness and despair that they feel. Fortunately for these two boys they are both still very much alive.
Although at times life may seem tough or even unbearable, please talk to somebody first before taking the irreversible step of taking your own life. There are many others around the world who are going through or have gone through the same things you are and they would be happy listen.
The two links below may offer you some help online. I know that for many of us this is our only contact with anyone in the gay community. The thought of actually talking to someone in person or even on the phone is intimidating. Please do the next best thing. Contact someone online.
The second link has many resources for those who are hurting inside. Don't keep it to yourself. Talk to someone.
Thank you for the opportunity to write this story for you, the reader. I can't tell you how much I've enjoyed it.
If you like The Smile and would like to see it continue, please send comments to:email@example.com. Note this is a new email address once again.
I am always interested in hearing what others have to say about my story. I also find it interesting to hear who your favorite character is and why, and perhaps even who you relate with the most. Are there things in my story that touch you in a specific or special way or that you can relate to most?
My goal for this story is to provide experiences from mine and other's pasts to help you, the readers, with situations in your own lives. Please let me know if I have done that for you.
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