Kyle, Part 3
Disclaimer: This story is a continuation of the story of Kevin Foley, Rick Mashburn, and their "sons," Tim Murphy, Kyle Goodson, Justin Davis, and Brian Mathews that started in "Tim," continued in "Justin" and "Kyle," "Kyle, Part 2," and now continues in "Kyle, Part 3." It is about gay men and gay boys living and loving together as a family, and it contains descriptions of sex. The sex is never intergenerational, though. If you are offended by descriptions of gay sex, or if the law in your area forbids you to read them, please exit the story. Otherwise, I hope you enjoy it. I appreciate feedback, and you can send it to me at email@example.com.
Taking the kids out of school for three days to go to Mardi Gras had been sort of risky, I thought. Tim and Brian made straight A's every grading period, but Kyle struggled to make B's and C's. The irony of that was that Kyle was every bit as smart, if not smarter, than Tim and Brian, but for some reason his personality was just not suited to school. He had started off his educational career by repeating kindergarten, and the road had been sort of bumpy off and on since then. Rita and I had discussed it in New Orleans.
"Kevin, I'm so glad we came to Mardi Gras," Rita had said. "You know that your mother and I have become very good friends?"
"Yeah, she talks about you and asks about you every time we have a phone conversation," I said.
"The way your parents have opened their home and their hearts to us is just wonderful," she said, "and they seem to be so fond of the boys. And speaking of them, they seem to be having a glorious time. Kyle has been so excited, he's just about been jumping out of his skin."
"I was a little worried about them missing three days of school for this trip," I said.
"But Kevin, this is such a wonderful cultural experience for them. When you come from a little backwater town like we do, you have to get your children to a big city as often as you can. Gene and I have always believed that. We tried to see to it that our boys traveled and experienced the world."
"You're right about the cultural experience, that's for sure. I worry about their grades, though," I said.
"My Kyle--bless his heart, he's such a sweet boy--has never been the scholar Clay was," she said. "You know he repeated kindergarten, but did you know he had to take medicine for hyperactivity for a number of years when he was little?"
I didn't know that, but I wasn't one bit surprised.
"No, I didn't," I said.
"It sort of cleared up at puberty, which came rather early for him. Our pediatrician had said that would probably happen, and it did," she said.
Oh, yeah? I thought. How much have you been around him?
"Do you ever worry about his future," I asked.
"Not at all. Kyle's going to be just fine. He's a very happy person by disposition, and he'll always survive and have a wonderful life."
Yeah, with his big fat trust fund standing behind him. That could happen. Survival could happen.
"You're right, Rita. Kyle is the natural leader of our boys. I guess you know that," I said.
"Yes. We talked about that some at Christmas, if you remember. He's always been that way," she said.
"Yeah, I do remember."
"He's going to run for president of Student Government at school. I hope and pray that he's not hurt, if he loses," she said.
"Do you think he would be, Rita?"
"Yes, but only for about an hour," she said.
She and I laughed. Maybe you know Kyle better than I thought you did, I thought.
"Kevin, changing the subject a little, has Kyle talked to you about becoming a Catholic?"
"No, he hasn't," I said.
"You and Rick are a profound influence on him, as I know you know, and you're both Catholic. Tim is Catholic, and I guess Brian and Jeff are, too. He also thinks very highly of your friend, Father Jerry, I believe his name is. Anyway, he's talked to Gene and me about it, and I hope you and Rick will give him whatever support he needs in that decision."
"You know we will, Rita," I said.
"Yes, I do know that. Kevin, if anything should happen to me, I hope you and Rick will take my place in Kyle's life. He loves you two so much."
She suddenly got huge tears in her eyes.
"Rita, are you okay?"
"Yes, I'm fine. Let's go catch some beads. And don't worry about Kyle's grades. He'll do just fine."
As it turned out, three of Kyle's four teachers had been at Mardi Gras at the same time we were, and their substitutes hadn't done any more than assign the busy-work the teachers had left for them to assign. In one class they had watched a movie video all three days that Kyle had already seen twice. In another they had free reading time, and in the third, they had done worksheets.
The worksheet teacher had passed them out the Friday we left and had told the class they were due on the following Thursday. Kyle had brought them with him and had, unbeknownst to us at the time, distributed them, along with pens, to his brothers at the start of the return trip. I had seen all of them, except Justin, working on something, but I assumed it was their own school work. By the time we got to the Louisiana-Mississippi state line, about forty-five minutes into the trip, that work was done. Not only was Kyle a natural leader and delegator, he knew not to enlist Justin because that would have attracted our suspicions. When I found out about what he had done, I thought about my conversation with Rita in New Orleans. Yes, Kyle will survive, and he'll make a shit-load of money doing it, I thought.
Kyle's fourth class, Outdoor Living, was a physical education elective that basically offered no challenge to an Eagle Scout who also wore the Order of the Arrow sash.
The last week in February was the beginning of our Spring Break season. True, it wasn't officially spring anywhere, but it was certainly spring-like in Emerald Beach. It started with the northern-most tier of states, and we had kids from Maine here as early as February 21st. To us it was still wintertime, and the temperature rarely rose above 75 degrees in the hottest part of the day, but to them, I suppose, it was spring. Our kids were still wearing long sleeve shirts and long-pants jeans to school every day, and now and then they even put on a light jacket to go out at night.
We were in the tourist business, of course, and we depended on the migration of people from elsewhere to make a living. I had worked very hard to make our four "brand name" hotels into convention destinations, and that was beginning to pay off very nicely. The other seven were still primarily for tourists who were here to enjoy the beach, and that would probably never change. But there were ways of marketing them, too, and I made sure my Marketing Director and his staff knew how to do that. Our best months were, in this order, June, July, March, and April. June and July had two major national holidays going for them--Memorial Day and Independence Day--as well as summer vacation for school kids. All March and April had going for them was Spring Break. MTV was coming back after a four-year hiatus, so we got a lot of free publicity from them, but we advertised heavily in campus news papers and on campus TV stations all over the place east of the Mississippi.
Rick's part of the business was just as dependent on traffic as mine was, maybe even more so. We figured out that spring that Mister Gene had gotten two very good brains for the price of one-and-a-half good brains, but that was okay. We were family, after all, and we still made a lot more money than we needed. Rick and I never fought at home or over personal stuff, like sex or money or family, but we fought like two dogs after the same bitch in heat at work in the first couple of weeks of Spring Break that spring. We'd have meetings with our staffs that always started off very cordially. Then things would begin to heat up. After a while, we'd be calling each other filthy names and castigating each other's parentage. The people who worked for us and who attended those meeting all knew we were an unshakable couple, and I'd occasionally see a grin or even hear a stifled laugh when we really got down on one another.
Rick and I were often mad as hell at one another over some business issue, but I was never mad at him as my husband, and he was never mad at me as his. In fact, the unwritten rule became the more ferocious the fight at work, the more passionate the love-making at home. Or, sometimes, in the office. We were testing and challenging one another at work, and we were growing so much closer to one another at home.
"You guys have been getting mighty lovey-dovey lately," Justin said one night near the end of the first week of Spring Break. "I'll bet it's seeing all those big fine boys all day that's making you pump out all that testosterone."
We were on the sofa with our shirts off, and I was holding Rick in our usual position.
"What are you talking about? Go do your homework," Rick said.
"I don't have homework. I'm a working boy, remember?"
"Go do Brian's for him, then," Rick said. He was teasing Justin, as usual.
"I'd rather sit here and watch you get hard."
"Justin, you are a fundamentally flawed human being, you know that," Rick said.
"Yeah, right, asshole," Jus said.
"Come here," Rick said.
"What?" But he came over to us anyway.
"Sit here with us, Buddy. We are so proud of you, we could bust," Rick said.
"I see something that's fixing to bust. Those buttons on your jeans are fixing to bust wide open," he said laughing.
Rick laughed. "Hey, Justin, guess what? I'm human, man. I get an erection when the man I love holds me like this."
He sat down on the edge of the sofa and put his hand on Rick's chest.
"Rick, I know you're human, and I'm glad you can still get hard at your age."
"Go to bed, Justin. Go to fucking bed, man," Rick said.
All three of us laughed.
"Seriously, I have three things I want to say to y'all. First, I love both of you more than I have words to say. And this is about to make me cry, so I'll move on to number two."
All three of us laughed.
"Number two is, thank you for taking me in and giving me a home. A very happy home. You have taken me places and let me do things that I didn't even know existed. The words 'thank you' weren't even in my vocabulary when I came here, but I know what they mean now. And I mean them when I say them, too."
"Come in here with us. I want to hold you, Bubba," Rick said. "Kevin and I love you so much, man."
Justin got on the sofa with us, and we hugged one another. We really did love that boy, and we were so proud of him. I had my worries about his long-term future because of his past, but at that moment he was all ours.
We stayed that way for a while. I had an erection, and I knew Rick had one, too. Justin had one, as well, I was sure, but those would have to go down on their own. That was a moment of emotional bonding with our son that had nothing to do with sex. Rick and I had both agreed that we didn't give Justin enough of our time. "You said you had three things, Jus, but you only said two. What's the third thing," Rick asked.
"I don't want to say that now," he said.
"Why not? Say it, man," Rick said.
"Jus, if you're not going to say it, go on to bed," Rick said. He was playing with Justin, and we all knew it.
"It's stupid, Rick. Don't make me leave. You've never held me like this, and I've wanted it so bad. I'm about 90% okay from before, you know? But I've still got a little bit to work out, you know?"
"Don't you go anywhere," Rick said. He squeezed Justin tighter.
"What do you still need to work out," I asked.
"That guy in that house in New Orleans. The guy who recognized me and wanted me," he said.
"Kyle nutted him pretty good, I thought," Rick said.
"Kyle was fabulous. No question," he said. "But that was the second one that got after me. Do you remember the guy at our bar and grill here? Where we always go after church?"
"Yes, we remember him, Jus," I said.
"So, that was number two in New Orleans. Am I going to have to do that all my life? I'm almost scared to go places now. I don't know what's going to happen. I was so scared with both of those guys. And the worst part is it makes me feel like a bad person, like I'm not worth anything when it happens."
"If your brothers are with you, especially Kyle, you know nothing is going to happen to you. We can't guarantee something bad won't happen to the other guy, though," Rick said.
"I know Kyle wants to kick ass big time. He's so gentle with us, yet he really wants to hurt somebody who is messing with us. I love him, but I don't really understand him sometimes. Why does he want to hurt them so bad?"
"His motivation is very complicated, Jus, and I only understand a part of it. Talk to him about it," I said. "Back to your original point. I hate that you're scared, but I can understand why you would be. You're not responsible for anything you did or what happened to you when you were with Burl Jackson. You are definitely not bad. You're a good person, and don't ever forget that."
"I never told you all this before, and I hope it won't make you mad at me. It wasn't always rough. Sometimes when I was having sex with those guys, I would come." He said that like he had committed a crime. "I enjoyed it sometimes."
"That doesn't matter, Jus," Rick said. "Sex is one of those automatic things, man. If somebody is sucking your dick, you're going to enjoy it, whether you want to or not, don't you think? And if they keep it up long enough, you'll probably have an orgasm, whether you want to or not. And you know what I've heard?"
"Orgasms are like pizza."
"There's no such thing as really bad pizza."
"That's a joke, isn't it," Jus asked.
"Yeah, and obviously not a very funny one if you're not really sure it's a joke," Rick said.
"Ha! Ha! Ha!," Justin said, mocking Rick.
"I deserved that for that joke. How have things been going at work," Rick asked.
"They're going good. The other day I found a package in a room that the people had already checked out of, and I hustled it down to the front desk and caught them before they left the building. The guy gave me twenty bucks as a tip," he said.
"That's good. You were thinking, and they appreciated it. What was in the package, do you know," I asked.
"I didn't look. I didn't think it was any of my business to look," he said.
"Jus, would you sit up, please. I'm getting hot wedged between you and Kevin like this," Rick said.
Justin sat up and Rick did, too.
"Thanks for talking to me," he said. "I sure miss it when Tim and Kyle aren't here."
"You don't really have much to do at night, do you," I asked.
"No. Brian studies so much I can't really play with him much at night. I'm usually too tired for much of a workout, and I want to stay awake so Bri and I can have some time together. I get bored," he said.
I hadn't thought about the fact that Justin had a very different kind of life now than he did when he was in adult school. He never had much homework, but the guys were usually all finished with theirs by the time he got home. Now that they were working out right after school, they did their homework before they went to bed instead of when they first got home from school. I was sure he did get bored.
"Have you learned much about how to use your computer," Rick asked. "A lot of people enjoy chatting on the Internet. You might like that."
"I haven't done much with it. I don't know anything about it or how to use it, really. The ones at school were all set up so that you could only do one thing with them, so I didn't learn anything about the Internet or any of that," he said.
"Jus, I know your brothers would be happy to teach you," I said.
"I feel dumb around them as it is, Kevin. I don't want to show more of my ignorance. Besides, don't you have to be able to type to use one of those things?"
"You can learn how to type, Jus. I taught myself how," Rick said.
"How'd you do that," he asked.
"I bought myself some typing software and just did what it said. You're pretty good with you hands. You can do it, too. I still have the software around here somewhere."
"I'll try it," he said. "I feel sort of out of it because the rest of them know so much about computers. I know I need to know that stuff, too. Maybe I could take a course at the college in that. Do they have things like that there?"
"Yes, of course they do. And the school district has community education courses on how to use the computer, too. If you want, I'll do some checking for you. Now let's go find that software," Rick said.
"I don't want to pull you away from Kevin, Rick."
"Kevin and I spent most of the day together at work screaming at each other," Rick said.
"Screaming? I've never heard y'all even argue, much less fight. What happened?" He got this pained look of concern on his face.
"We weren't literally screaming, Bubba. We disagreed about something, that's all. It wasn't about us. It was about work stuff. We still love each other, don't worry," Rick said. "There aren't any problems between us."
"Phew! That's good to hear. I can't ever see you guys busting up," he said. I considered that quite a compliment, and I knew Rick did, too.
"We can't either, Jus," I said.
"No, we're in this forever, Jus," Rick said. "But come on, let's go."
They went off to find the typing software.
Ever since we got back from New Orleans, I've had e-mail from Seth Adams every single day. Sometimes two or three in the same day. I really liked him, and I thought he was a great guy, but I just didn't know what to say to him.
"Just delete it without opening it," Tim said after I complained to him about it.
"I don't want to hurt his feelings," I said. "I want him as a friend, and I'm sure we'll see him again when we go back to New Orleans."
"Why don't you ask Kevin and Rick what to do."
"The problem is, he doesn't have any friends but us. He's started chatting on Gay dot com, and he now says he has a boyfriend on there," I said. "Do you believe you can have a boyfriend on the Internet? A real boyfriend?"
"Yeah, I've heard of that," he said.
"I need to be close enough to my boyfriend to get some of this," I said.
I started rubbing his dick through his pants. I was just doing it as a joke, but he didn't think it was funny. I felt him start to get hard in about two seconds, and that made me start to get hard, too. It was right after school, and we were in the den at Kevin and Rick's house. We were still eating our snack. We were going to work out, and we didn't usually make love at that time of day. I took my hand away.
"Why'd you stop," he asked.
"Are you sure," I asked.
"Yeah. Brian's off being a Den Chief for those Cub Scouts, and the rest of 'em are at work. Nobody's coming home soon," he said.
"Well, come here, then, you little sex monkey." That made me very glad.
We started kissing, and it felt damn good to be that spontaneous. I could make love to Tim any time, any place. Sometimes I worried I was hornier than I was supposed to be. I told that to Rick one time, and he laughed and said it was my job to be horny. Well, in that case, I ought to get the employee of the year award.
We kissed and made out for a long time. We took our shirts off and played with each other's nipples. He could do things to my nipples with his tongue that were unbelievable. I hoped what I did felt as good to him. It had been a while since we had just jerked each other off, and that's what we did that afternoon. I know a lot of people think you have to stick you dick into some opening for it to really be sex, but I think a good handjob can be just as satisfying and just as much fun as anything else. We took a long time doing each other, and that was nice. I've gotten to the point where I can tell when Tim's real close, so I slack off and make it last for him. He can do the same for me, too, although sometimes he doesn't pay good attention and he forgets to slow down.
When it comes to hand work, I favor the gentle touch. You see these movies where guys are jerking off, and they're going at it so hard they look like they're about to pull their dicks off. Nuh-uh. I want it soft and delicate and gentle. The same thing goes for blowjobs and fucking. I've never done those things with anybody but Tim, but I think he's a master at all of it.
I always like it when Tim shoots his cum on my dick and balls, and that's what he did that day. Ohhh, that's hot to me. I did the same to him.
"Let's clean each other up," he said.
I went for my underwear to wipe us off, but that little monkey had something else in mind. He meant clean each other up with our mouths. Well, you guessed it, and we both came again hard in a sixty-nine.
"I don't think I can have sex again for a week," I said when we were all through.
"Shit, Kyle, you know you'll want it again when we go to bed."
I laughed because I knew he was right.
He grabbed me and hugged me tight. God, I love that guy.
That night I brought up the subject of Seth and all his e-mail to Kevin and Rick. We had just finished the snack we had instead of eating dinner, and we were all in the den.
"I don't know what to say to him," I said. "I can't just ignore the guy. I consider him a friend, and I know he doesn't have many friends."
"What does he write to you about," Justin asked.
"Mostly this guy he says he's dating," I said.
"He's dating someone," Kevin asked.
"Well, not really. Not in person, anyway. In chat," I said.
I saw Rick cut his eyes to Justin, and I wondered what was up. I knew Justin wasn't chatting with anybody, and I knew Rick wasn't chatting, either.
"What is this chat you're talking about, Kyle," Rick asked.
"You don't know what chat is?"
"I'd like you to explain it, if you don't mind," he said.
Then I knew what was up. Justin didn't know what it was, and Rick didn't want to embarrass him by saying so. Rick also knew that I knew. I went ahead and gave a good explanation, not using any technical words so I knew Justin could follow it.
"Do y'all think that's a real boyfriend," Jus asked when I was finished explaining it.
"That's the kind of boyfriend I had before you, Buddy," Brian said.
"What did y'all do?"
"Jus, that's kind of a personal question, don't you think," Rick said.
Justin got a frustrated look on his face.
"Rick, I know sex is private and we don't talk in public about private matters, but how can two people sitting at computers, miles away from one another, possibly have sex? I'm not trying to be nosey. I'm just needing information."
Justin was always cute, but he was especially cute right then.
"I don't mind talking about it, Rick," Brian said.
"Well, okay," Rick said.
"Buddy, mostly we just talked about stuff we were doing or had done that day."
"No lip action, huh?"
"Did you guys cyber," Tim asked.
"Yeah," Brian said.
"Cyber? Have we done that," he asked Brian.
Kevin and Rick were trying real hard not to laugh out, and it was pretty hard for me to keep from doing it, too.
"Cyber sex is doing it with somebody over the Internet," I said.
"I'm getting more confused by the minute," Jus said. "To me, having sex means touching and kissing and . . ."
"We know how it's done, Bubba," Kevin said.
"Hell, y'all were probably the inventors," he said.
Everybody laughed hard on that one.
"With cyber sex, you write back and forth what you would do if the person was there with you in the room or in the bed with you," Brian said.
"People think that's having sex," Justin asked.
"You're of the old fashioned grunt and sweat school, Bubba," I said.
"I'm sorry, but, yeah, I am," Jus said. "I'm just an old-fashioned kind of guy."
"Bubba, basically what people do when they have cyber sex is they describe what they would do, just like Brian said, and then they masturbate," Kevin said.
"Oh. See, I don't think of masturbation as real sex if it's just you doing it to yourself," he said. "There's no communication of feelings."
"Damn! Where the hell did that come from," I asked.
Justin and I tapped knuckles together.
"It came from right here in my head," he said.
"Shut up, Kyle," he said, laughing.
"So Seth writes to you about his friend," Rick asked.
"Yeah, he even sent me his picture. The guy looks like he's about twelve. He's fifteen, but he looks real young in that picture. He's got braces and pimples," I said. "Definitely not cute."
"Can't everybody be a big, hairy-chested stud, you know." When he did that, he pulled on the front of my shirt, but he made sure he got a lump of hair between his fingers.
"Ow! That hurts, man. I can't help it. It's connected to real skin, you know? I told you that. Don't do that," I said. "I'm going to start pulling your pubic hair and see how you like it."
"Don't be pissed at me, Bubba. I'm sorry. I won't do it any more," he said. "Okay?"
"Okay, but mean it this time, okay?"
"I do, Kyle. I'm sorry, man."
"Where was I," I said.
"You were telling us about the boyfriend. Seth's boyfriend," Rick said.
"He's sent me some logs of their chats, too. I read about a third of one of them, but I haven't read any more of them. I mean, I like Seth a lot, and I want him to be my friend. Our friend. But he writes me these real long letters, and there's nothing to say in return," I said.
"Why don't you tell him that you'll write to him once or twice a week, but that's all," Kevin suggested.
"Do you think I could get away with that," I asked.
"It wouldn't hurt to try," he said.
"I just don't want to hurt him, you know," I said. "He's such a nice guy, and I know he doesn't really have any friends. He didn't tell me that, but I just know it."
"I'm proud of you for having that attitude, Kyle," Kevin said. "I want to tell all of you something, and I hope you'll never tell this to Seth. Okay?"
"Whatever you say, Kev," Justin said. He was speaking for all of us.
"Seth apparently has very low self-esteem. Do you all know what that means?"
"He feels like he's worthless, like nobody likes him, like he doesn't matter to anybody. Is that what you mean," Justin asked.
"That's exactly right, Jus."
"Been there, done that," Jus said.
"I think we all have been, Jus. Everybody feels that way to some extent at some point in their lives. A lot of young gay boys feel that way. All of you did, probably. I certainly did. But then we found love and acceptance. We found somebody who said, basically, I don't care what you are. I love you, and you are valuable to me," Kevin said.
"Isn't that what happens in this family," I asked.
"I hope so," Kevin said.
"Shit, Kevin, I know so. That's exactly what y'all did for me, and for Brian and Jeff, too," Justin said. I knew he wasn't mad or pissed off. He just felt real strong about us, and he was saying so right then.
"That's also what you guys did for Seth, and, Kyle, like it or not, need it or not, in his mind the main focus of that is you. I don't think you boys fully grasp the impact that all of you together can have on a person," Kevin said.
"But we didn't do anything. All we did was be nice to him," I said.
"Think about it, Kyle. You're Seth and you think you're a worthless piece of shit. All of a sudden somebody like Kyle and Tim take you aside and spend an hour and a half showing you their Web site. Then, they take you outside for a parade, and they joke with you and tease you and include you in their fun with their closest friends. And all the friends include you, too. Then they want you to party with them that night in the French Quarter. You think you're a worthless piece of shit because you're gay, and, all of a sudden, these great guys, who are fun and good looking and well built and masculine and self-confident and happy, tell you they're gay, too. Am I getting my point across?"
"Yeah, and it's kind of scary, too, Kevin," I said. "I can't drop this kid. It's like we helped make him or something, and if I dropped him, he'd break, wouldn't he?"
"He'd bust into a million pieces, Kyle. Please don't do that, Bubba. I'll write to him some for you. Kyle, I was more fucked up than he is, and you didn't give up on me. Please don't give up on him," Justin said. He had tears in his eyes.
"Jus, he asks about you every day. I'll give you his e-mail address so you can write to him. He'd love that," I said.
"Kyle, I talked to Rick and Kevin about this the other night. I don't know what e-mail is. I'm going to learn because I know it's important, but it's going to take me a while," Jus said.
"Buddy, I'll teach you," Brian said. "We all had to learn. I didn't think you knew about it, but I didn't want to embarrass you by asking. We'll all work with you. Won't we?"
Brian looked at me and Tim.
"Abso-fucking-lutely, dude," I said. "Stud, you're going to be a computer whiz by the time we finish with your ass. And don't ever be afraid to ask questions, man. I didn't know shit about how to do anything with a Web page until I asked Jeff to show me. Now I can do a lot. In fact, I'm going to make my own Web site. It's going to be called 'Kyle for SGA President,' and I'm going to put the address on all my campaign stuff. There will be pictures of me naked for the girls and for a few select members of our team."
They all laughed when I said that.
"And, no, Kevin, I'm only teasing. I don't need a private chat," I said.
Again, we laughed some more.
I was talking again. "I think what I'm going to do is just let him keep writing me like he wants to. I'll give it another month or so. I bet he'll slack up some because he's making friends in real life, too. He told me about a girl who sits next to him in some class. English, I think. They've been talking before and after class. And he's started giving his neighbor a ride to school. It's a guy, and I think he's fourteen. Maybe they'll start hanging out, and he won't have so much time to write to me."
"Has he come out to his parents yet," Kevin asked.
"Well, yeah, but it was sort of a reverse of him coming out," I said. "He said his parents were talking about us and said something like, 'If more people knew gay guys like them, the stereotypes would disappear.' Then they went on to talk about us and that we were gay, and that they knew he was gay, and it was perfectly fine with them. It was just like Cherie said it would be. So, yeah, he's out to them."
"Who outed me? I'll kill the motherfucker," Justin said.
We all laughed.
"Yeah, you've been in the closet so long you got hanger prints on your face," I said.
They thought that was funny, too.
"I'll get your hanger, dude," he said.
"But it won't be hanging when you get after it," I said.
"All right, guys. I think that's enough for tonight. Go do your homework," Kevin said.
"And I've got home keys to work on," Justin said. I didn't know what he was talking about, but Rick hugged him.
I started upstairs with the rest of them, but Kevin called me back. Shit, I thought. Another private chat. What the hell did I do?
"Kyle, Rick and I want to talk to you," Kevin said.
Double barrel this time, I thought.
"Sir?" I was going to play this one meek because I didn't have any idea of what this was about. I usually knew.
"Kyle, we are so proud of you for the way you're dealing with Seth. That boy needs you badly. Please don't give up on him," Rick said.
Phew, I thought. This ain't a chew-out.
"You heard what Justin said, didn't you? You didn't give up on him, and he was a lot worse off. And he was, Kyle, and you didn't give up on him," Kevin said.
"I'm not going to give up on Seth," I said.
"That wasn't an order," Rick said.
"I know, but I have a conscience, you know? I know what my responsibilities are, Rick. And I do 'em, man. I do my responsibilities."
"Yes, you do, little man," Kevin said. He had tears in his eyes. What the fuck was that all about?
Both of them grabbed me up in a big hug, and I gave it back to them. I wasn't sure what that was all about, exactly, but I liked it. I went upstairs then to help Justin with e-mail. Imagine! Helping somebody with e-mail! Jesus.