Tommy and Jake
My Kid Brother Tommy and His Best Friend Jake
I am so sorry it took so long to get this chapter posted. No excuses. Well, maybe one. I just didn’t like any version I wrote. This is version # 4 and I like it. I hope you do too. Thank you, thank you, thank you for all the comments and messages you have sent. You blow me away with your support. Please keep reading the story and sending me email. I love you guys!
This is a gay teenage love story. It is also about discovering and overcoming obstacles in life. There are going to be sexual situations depicted but that is not the purpose of the story, If you don’t like gay relationships or are legally not allowed to read about them, please refrain from doing so. Do not copy without permission. Please enjoy! firstname.lastname@example.org
Chapter 7: The Incident
I felt like I was struggling to stay afloat in a sea of black tar. I couldn’t move my arms and legs. My lungs were on fire and I could barely breathe. I ached liked I had never ached from head to toe and back again. I battled to open my eyes and they just would not cooperate or if they did, I must be blind because all I could see was black. Was this a dream? A black smothering nightmare?
I quit fighting and released myself to the calming tantras of meditation I had learned in my martial arts studies. Focusing on one imaginary spark of light, I tried to calm my mind. I could feel a whirlwind of activity around me but I centered my soul on that imaginary spark. I endeavored to be one with the spark and block out all my fears and pain. I found I could almost breathe without trembling from the extreme effort to draw in each breath. The excruciating pain racking my body became a dull throbbing minor annoyance in the background of my awareness.
After an indeterminate amount of time, my trance deepened and I could feel my spirit and awareness leaving my body to hover ia few feet above my body. The harshly lit white tiled room was a flurry of activity as ten doctors and nurses worked in unison on my battered body. Battered. What a clean and clinical word. The view afforded to me from above was anything but clean and clinical. The sheets were soaked in crimson and there were small pools of blood on the floor around my bed. I also had open wounds either caused by the doctors or being fixed by the doctors. I couldn’t tell which.
I was in an operating room. Tubes and wires attached me to a multitude of noisy machines in the room as two groups of medical personnel worked feverishly on my broken body. One group was working on my face and head while the other was operating on my chest and lower body. I must have been in a car crash or a horrible accident of some sort to end up like this. I realized there were sounds of conversation around me and I struggled to make sense of the fragments I could understand.
“Jesus, I can’t believe he’s still alive...”
“More suction over here...”
“Careful Doctor, too much pressure and the damage could be permanent...”
“Blood pressure dropping...”
“Deal with critical, life threatening injuries first...”
“Feel like I’m back in Iraq...”
“He’s a fighter that’s for sure...”
“He’s the same age as my son, what sort of sick...”
There was a loud buzzing intense pain and I couldn’t make out any more conversation. I was back inside my body. A short time later my head hurt less and I relaxed further into my trance and was able to project my consciousness outside my body once again. Seeing that the surgery would take a while, I expanded my search for answers. I focused all my energy and attention on finding Tommy and Zack. I knew they would be close by. I just hoped they were in better shape than I was. I still couldn’t imagine why I was here in surgery.
Finally I tracked down the auras I recognized as Tommy and Jake. I was surprised to find them and our moms huddled together for support in the hospital waiting area. Tommy and Zack were both being held in their respective mothers’ laps and were sobbing hysterically. I zeroed in on Jake as Mrs. Clayton smooth his hair and tried to calm him.
“Jake, sweetie, Josh is a strong boy. I’m sure he will be alright.”
“But mama, they said he wasn’t breathing when they brought him in. The EMT’s worked on him and worked on him just to get him breathing again. He has to be alright. If he dies I don’t know what I’ll do.” He broke down and sobbed hysterically.
I drifted next to Tommy just as he lifted his head from our mother’s shoulder where he too had been sobbing. “Who would want to hurt Josh, mama? He is about the nicest boy in the whole world. And to leave him for dead like that...I don’t understand.”
“I don’t understand either baby.” Mom answered gently. “Right now we need to focus on Joshie being okay. He is going to be okay. I do hope we hear something soon.”
Mrs.Clayton turned to my mom and asked. “Where are the guys? They’ve been gone a while. I hope they are getting some information from the doctors.”
“Me too,” Mom choked back a sob. “Not knowing what is happening is scaring me to death.”
Still unsure what the story was, my consciousness sought my father and Mr. Clayton. Hopefully I could learn more information from them. It took a while, but I finally found them in a well furnished office on the first floor of the hospital. The plaque on the door said William Johnstone, Hospital Administrator.
I heard my father’s anguished voice from inside the office. “I don’t understand Bill. Why can’t you give us any more information?”
“it’s not that I don’t want to Matt.” The older gentleman answered gently. “I don’t have the information to give you yet. Josh is still in surgery and will be for a few more hours from the looks of it. From what the EMT’s reported when they brought him in, he’s lucky to be alive at all. Whoever did this to him, left him for dead.”
“Bastards!” Jake’s father hissed through clenched teeth while he paced around the office. “When I find out who did this...”
“Calm down Mark.” My dad got up and faced his best friend. “We can’t go vigilante on this. We will make sure justice is served, but legally, through the court system.”
“I know, I just can’t believe anyone would attack little Josh like that. He’s barely eleven years old for Christ’s sake. What did he ever do?”
“I have been racking my brain and all I can think of is it goes back to what happened at his birthday party.”
My birthday party. Dad was probably right on that one. What a disaster that turned out to be. It started out so great and ended up so terrible...
My eleventh birthday. All my friends had been there, the entire sixth grade class from my private school, my karate buddies from the dojo, lots of parents but especially my little brother Tommy and his best friend Jake. My favorite people in the entire world. Even though Tommy and Jake were only in fourth grade we still loved to be together.
The party had been held in our church’s back yard. There was a volleyball net set up and a soccer field and even a basketball area. All the kids had been having so much fun. After a couple of hours, Mom called us all over and everybody sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to me and we had cake and ice cream. After refreshments, it was time to open presents!
Jake handed me his gift to open and hugged me saying, "I love you Joshie."
As usual I replied, "I love you even more Jakey!"
The three of us had always hugged and said ‘I love you’ since before I had started first grade. It was all innocent fun. But today there was a boy
at the party that didn't think it was innocent or fun. He thought it was ugly and sinful. He was a couple of years older than the rest of us and wasn’t even supposed to be at the party, but he came with his little sister. His name was Kenny Johns and he was a notorious bully.
Kenny yelled out. "Josh Hayes is a fag! Jake is his boyfriend. God hates fags!"
I didn't know what to think. Me and Jake hadn't done anything wrong and now everyone had taken up the chant, "Josh is a fag, God hates fags! Josh is a fag. God hates fags!” Over and over until finally the parents were able to break up the spontaneous hate fest.
Needless to say, the party was ruined. Parents rushed in to rescue their children and get them away from me.There was a fag on the loose and their children were at risk. My best day ever had just become my worst day ever. Some kids even took their gifts back.
"Why was everyone so mean, daddy?" I cried into my dad’s huge chest as he carried me to the car a while later. The caterers had come and dismantled everything and my parents were finally able to get us loaded up to go home.
"People can be mean, Josh. They don't understand how close you are with your brother and Jake so they make fun of you and try to hurt you. Don’t you worry about it, this will all blow over soon enough."
That night when I was laying in bed trying to go to sleep, I heard mom and dad yelling and fighting. Words like ‘gay’ and ‘fag’ and ‘embarrassed’ were what I could make out. Tommy snuck into bed with me and held me close as I cried myself to sleep. Kids could be heartless and cruel and contrary to what my Dad said, some things don’t blow over.
I could feel my grip on reality starting to loosen and get fuzzy around the edges. It was time I headed back to the operating room. I had been out of my body longer than any previous meditation and I needed to get oriented before I lost myself somewhere in the cosmos. My Sensei had been teaching us the value of meditation and he and I had discussed my ability to ‘escape’ my body. He said it was rare ithat someone my age was able to accomplish it. He said most masters took years to be able to achieve that level of consciousness.
As I found my way back to surgery, I felt another presence near me. It was familiar and foreign at the same time. I looked around and was startled to see my Sensei standing next to my body in the operating room. He was motioning for me to come to him, so I floated down and ‘stood’ next to him studying my bruised and broken body.
“Josh.” His voice whispered in my mind. “I perceived you would be projecting during your surgery.”
“It is in your nature.” He chuckled. “And I would probably have done the same thing. We are very much alike in some ways. Mischevious yet serious and still very curious about what makes us tick. You are wise beyond your years yet still naive and childlike in many ways. Did you know I consider you one of my most promising students?”
“No Sensei.” I replied, awed that he felt that way about me. “I am honored. But why me?”
“You have more passion and spirit than almost anyone I have ever taught. Plus you have an intuitive grasp of martial arts and ancient culture. You are a natural.”
“Thank you Sensei, for the praise.” I looked at the floor embarrassed while feeling an incredible sense of pride.
“Josh, my child.” He placed his hand on my shoulder. “We need to make plans for your recovery and your future.”
I gulped and just looked him in the eyes as he continued.
“You probably don’t realize what has happened to your body today.”
“No, that is why I was meditating and projecting my consciousness to find out what happened to me.” I hesitated a moment then asked. “Can you tell me what happened?”
“Yes, I can. But first you must relax and center yourself once again and make sure you control your emotions and concentration completely.” He warned me seriously. “If you lose control of your emotions and come out of your trance, your consciousness could get separated from your body and you could be crippled psychologically.”
I closed my eyes and meditated to go deeper into my trance so I could stay focused. “I am ready Sensei.”
“Yes.” He smiled. “I can see you are. I am so proud of what you have accomplished in so few years.”
I smiled at his praise and strengthened my trance even further.
“Today, after school, you were attacked by a group of people and dragged into the boys locker room. Before you could defend yourself you were knocked unconscious by a golf club that crushed the back of your skull. The attackers then beat you and kicked you while you lay unconscious on the floor, breaking ribs and damaging your spleen and stomach. They finally stripped you naked, crushed your testicles by stomping on your groin and raped you repeatedly with the shaft of the golf club used to knock you out. You may lose one or both of your testicles and you have had extensive damage done to your lower intestine and rectum.”
“Who attacked me?” I asked as tears streamed down my face. “Why would they do this to me? I haven’t done anything to anyone.”
“As you know, I teach martial arts and self defense to the local police departments and I also used to be a county deputy. I have a lot of friends on the force and I have been in contact with many of them trying to find out what they know. To answer your question, they don’t know who attacked you. No witnesses have come forward and your school does not have video surveillance.
“The attack as I described it to you is the best timeline the forensics team can put together based on evidence at the crime scene. They are fairly certain at least three suspects are involved and maybe up to six suspects total. Other than that, they don’t have much to go on. Fingerprint and DNA evidence is pretty useless as so many people use the locker room and there is so much ‘evidence’ to be had.”
“I wish I could remember something, but all I remember is walking out of class and heading to my locker and then it gets all fuzzy.” I shook my head trying to remember more. “I think I remember stopping to get a drink of water and...the lights went out and I couldn’t see anything. I kind of remember being dragged somewhere, but I’m not really sure.”
“Hmm, maybe someone drugged you.” He rubbed his chin as he thought. “I should make sure you are tested for drugs in your bloodstream. Or maybe they covered your eyes or head. It is all speculation at this point.”
“How bad am I hurt?” I finally asked. Afraid of what he would tell me.
“I am not going to lie, Josh.” He sighed heavily. “By all rights you should not be alive. The two things that saved you are the fact that you are in incredible physical shape from martial arts and running and exercise on the weight machines. Someone with less physical strength could not have survived. The second thing that helped save you was the fact your attackers threw you into a cold shower after they finished with you. We assume they did it to cause more pain, but the cold water actually slowed your body processes enough that you could make it until help arrived.”
I looked at my body lying on the operating table. Although the room was crowded and there was a flurry of activity I could see I was covered in bruises and bloody areas. I was hard to recognize and I would probably have a lot of scars.
“What is going to happen to me?” I finally asked.
“Now, is when you will need your mental strength the most. You will be in the hospital for weeks while you mend. Then there will months of physical and psychological therapy. You must be tenacious and meditate daily on getting stronger. You are a warrior Joshua and you will overcome this adversity. I will be with you as will your family and your friends. There will be highs and there will be lows. You will want to give up at times. But you will remember this conversation and think of all the strength you have to conquer this setback.
“Joshua, there are times in life that can define you. This is your defining moment. Your moment to shine. I promise you we will get through this together and you will be stronger and faster and more determined after we put it all behind us. I believe in you and trust your strength. You are a champion.”
He put his hands on my shoulders and tears streamed down his face just as they did mine. I now knew what had happened to me. I was attacked and almost killed. Probably because someone thought I was gay. I now also knew I would work as hard as I possibly could to get back to healthy again. But first I had to make it through surgery and find out how I could beat this.
I opened my eyes and Sensei was gone and I was in another part of the hospital. I was in another room. A room filled with tubes and wires and monitors and hanging IV bags. But most importantly, Tommy and Jake and my parents were there.
“Hey look everybody!” Tommy practically screamed. “He’s awake! Josh is awake.”
I wasn’t able to speak and I couldn’t move, but I guess Mom knew I was trying ask how long, because she answered. “Oh! Joshie, it’s so wonderful to see you open your eyes. The doctor said you would wake up today. You have been in an induced coma for six weeks while your brain and body healed.”
Six weeks? Coma? Instead of panicking which would have been a normal reaction, I focused on what Sensei told me about inner strength and meditation and getting better faster. I slowed my breathing and heart rate and tried to smile. I was awake and the recovery process was already beginning. I could do this. I would do this. I would be okay.
The day following the attack of Josh, this article appeared in the ‘Local News’ section of the local paper.
“An eleven year old boy was attacked and left for dead in the boy’s locker room at Rudolf Private School, at 3:30 p.m. Monday. The boy who has not been identified was beaten and sexually assaulted by unknown assailants. He is clinging to life in the critical care unit at an area hospital. Police have made no arrests and are asking that anyone with information about the case please contact them.”
Thank you so much for all your comments on the first six chapters. You all are my inspiration.