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About this Story
Chapter 6 of “A Love so Star-crossed”
30 Jan 2013
A Love so Star-crossed
Chapter 6 – Losing
Even with our rock-solid relationship that seemed to always grow and never fade, Max and I both understood that there would come a time when all hells broke loose; there would come a day when our relationship was forced out of its privacy. And we agreed that we always had to be ready for that day, and be fully prepared for it.
I can never forget the first weekend of that my first December in California. Winter was in the air. In any given morning, I could hear trees squeaking around the house. Looking outside my bedroom window, all I saw was the signs of the approaching winter, and so I feared the loss of life and cold weather, which I loathe.
My parents were out of town for a funeral of some relative I hadn’t even heard of, and when Max and I insisted on a sleepover, they suggested we do it at Max’s house. And so we agreed. That was the first time I spent my evening at his house, and we couldn’t wait.
The only thing that I love about the freezing winter was a chance of snow, however slim. But Max said he was used to the lack of snow here – he never saw snow his entire life, and decided he probably wouldn’t like it even if he did.
On Friday afternoon, I went straight to his home after school, leaving all my school stuff in his house. There were still some assignments left in my own house, but I wasn’t planning on getting them. I was looking forward to a weekend of continuous fun – not bottomless boredom.
We played a few rounds of Mass Effect on the Xbox, and then caught some kids’ movie on Disney. It was silly alright, but there was nothing better to do.
“It’s getting dark out there,” Max said, looking bored.
“Yea. We having dinner here?” I asked, looking blankly into the horizon, seeking something that probably didn’t exist. I noticed though the balcony wasn’t as elegant as the one outside my room, it had a better view, and allowed us to see part of the beach.
“I guess Mum’s cooking,” he finally responded. I nodded.
“Man! There’s nothing to do,” I complained. “I’m actually tempted to work on my assignments.”
“I wish we had perpetual boners. I’d never be tired of making out with you.”
“You wish,” I grinned, but soon I was overcome by complete dullness. God. Even breathing this air felt especially depressing and boring. Everything seemed to bring me down in December, especially one without snow.
And so we made out again (after a million times), sending (less) passionate kisses everywhere, without our erections, which we truly depleted not long ago. We were not capable of another climax, but every now and then we got semi-hard and rubbed our members together, lost in another celestial embrace that built on entwined mutual thoughts rather than physical arousal. Just being beside the one I loved the most was enough to drive off the dullness in this life, even if it was only temporary and in gradual increments.
We all looked comfortable enough when the five of us were seated around the rectangular dining table when dinner was served. There were a total of five: Max, me, his parents, and his 15-year-old brother Nick.
“We’re glad Max is spending a lot of time with you, David,” Max’s mum said.
“Yeah we’re like boyfriends,” I joked. I regretted it the moment I said it. It was too risky to joke about something that was actually the truth when I wasn’t even sure whether my face could lie like my words could. I rubbed my eyes with my hands and took that opportunity to calm and shield myself. When my eyes opened, I thought I saw confusion in the parents’ eyes then, but soon it was all laughter. Note to self: No more jokes.
“You and my little brother are so alike,” Nick laughed. “David’s like your lost son, dad.” Max’s dad nodded presently, shooting me this caring smile that made me blush a little.
Dinner was over soon. We had roast chicken and mashed potatoes, with a couple of sweet apples to follow as deserts. And I was so content, feeling that I didn’t need fancy stuff to lead a happy life. Surrounded by all this warmth and love, I knew it was already enough. I wondered if Max felt the same way.
After dinner we all went to Nick’s room upstairs for silly card games. We played absent-mindedly, because mostly we chatted, about school and everything else. Nick told us some of his favorite bands and played us some of their albums. It was much better than this afternoon with Nick here, who really seemed to fill the room with endless laughter and topics.
“Now you guys,” Nick finally said, “run along, head back to your room. I’m gonna talk to Jane.” Max shot me a look. I got it – his girlfriend. We returned to Max’s room.
Closing the door to Max’s room and falling on the bed were easy tasks, but taking off our clothes and staying on the oddly small bed were hard when we were already burning with a thousand desires and desperate to feel each other’s skin after a nice home-cooked meal. Max’s skin was so smooth, and his eyes so blue, and his hair no longer spiky but still so good-looking. Everything about him drove my desires, and filled me with all sorts of fantasies when I wasn’t with him. But now I was, and we belonged to no one but each other in this tiny space.
“When are you cutting that hair?” I asked. He hadn’t cut it since we met. After five months, it already danced madly in the wind and blocked his vision most of the time.
“Whenever you want,” he smiled. We were entangled for another kiss.
Then the door was pushed open, the cracking sounds easily heard. “Hey guys I’ve got this CD…” We froze, so did Nick. But then he immediately said, “It’s alright. I’ll…”
That moment beckoned the beginning of a nightmare; it all went downhill from there. It was Max’s dad, right behind his elder son when we were about to pull away from the kiss and got off the bed.
“David, can you stay here? I will have to talk to Max downstairs.” he said firmly. I saw the two of them went down, leaving me and Nick with only confusion and embarrassment all over us. I started weeping then, immediately after Max was out of my sight. We got caught. We knew this day would come, and we said we’d prepare for it. But what could we have done? We hadn’t expected this moment to happen so soon. When the truth was revealed, it still hit us hard, like a thousand tons of rocks weighing me down, making sure that I could never get back up.
There. Your typical crybaby. I cried, for minutes without end, and it would continue till my eyes hurt too much and my tears ran dry.
“It’s okay, David.” It was Nick. He was still here, sitting beside me on the bed. Then he pulled me into an embrace, and his shirt was soon flooded by tears that eroded Max and me.
“Don’t worry. It’s going to be okay,” he assured. I wanted to shout out loud to make it clear to him that nothing was going to be okay, because it was all messed up and it was all over. I didn’t say anything.
When I finally fell into unconsciousness after running out of energy, I dreamed about Joel, and how depressing it was, how I cried for many nights because of this one boy, and how harsh the world was to me. Why did all our good times have to be fugacious? Why did the world have to exercise its ferocity on us when we were least prepared to face it?
Deep in my mind, I knew that Max was different – he reciprocated my feelings, and perhaps loved me more than I loved him. But what good did it do? It was nothing now; what was between us was nothing now. Just in that brief moment we were caught, every dream had been wiped out. All that running on the beach. All that kissing and hugging. All that looking at the stars and people. They were no more. From now on, it was only loneliness that dwelled inside of me. I still felt like I was crying in my dreams; I could no longer draw the line between dreamland and reality, for anguish had removed the boundary. It was no different now – anguish was everywhere.
When I woke, I felt my body had been stung by a hundred needles. Nick had gone back to his room. It was only me and this lonely bed in this empty room. Winter smelled terrible, and it was chilling down to my blood and bones. Given any other morning, Max would be here beside me; I would be hearing closely to his slight snoring and planting kisses on his cheeks to guide him gradually away from the invasion of wolves and rogue wizards. But this was not an ordinary day – this was judgment day.
My frail legs brought me downstairs like a ghost without direction. With each step I ran through all the possible scenarios inside my head. The most likely one was that I would be asked to leave and that we could never see each other again. It was also likely that I would be given a lecture about what we did wrong, and all Max could do was to watch silently without a single comment.
“Good morning, David,” Max’s mum said, in a polite and caring tone. “Come and have breakfast with us.”
I went over and take a seat on the other side, purposely distancing myself from Max to avoid further exasperation on his parents. Everyone was here, like the previous night. Max, Nick and I had worries written on our faces, but the parents seemed oblivious to what happened. What was going on? Had it all been a dream? I wished that were true.
“Shall we go to the mall today and get some Christmas decorations?” suggested Max’s dad. He was totally calm, acting as if he’d forgotten everything. Max and I tried to avoid looking directly at each other, but at times our eyes met, and it was all confusion that filled the scene.
It was an uneventful trip to the mall. In the vehicle, the father told Nick to sit between us in the backseat. Of course. How foolish of me to think and pretend that nothing had happened. I was getting it, except I didn’t know what I was going to get. And that made me crazy. I blinked wetly, looking dully at the feeble rising sun under an overcast sky with merely noticeable cracks to spare. Soon it started drizzling, and I could almost touch the melancholy in the rain.
I hate malls. Walking in one only added to my depression. I thought I couldn’t breathe then, being surrounded by unrelenting concrete walls and crowds of people one after another, with happy faces that were only disturbing.
I was a ghost once again, floating through nicely decorated shops and joking salespeople, reminiscing gloomily, missing my crushed dreams already. I couldn’t help but look at Max occasionally. I knew deep inside he was in pain too. While I worried about myself, I worried more about him. I thought back to when he lost control and burst into tears the first time we kissed.
We had hamburgers for lunch. Nick, Max and I started talking casually, and no one stopped us. Nor were we looked at like we committed an unforgivable sin. Had we been forgiven? Would everything be all right now?
The whole afternoon was spent looking for little decorations for Max’s house. We got a Christmas tree, some Christmas socks, two Christmas bells, and a lot more, though I can’t remember more.
By dinnertime we got everything we needed and started heading back to the house. It had been a busy Saturday. Back in the house, I was told to continue to sleep on Max’s bed. When Max said goodnight, his tone made him a totally different person. His looks were emotionless, and his movements unstable. Slowly he headed for Nick’s room, and I knew I was alone for the night, and many nights ahead.
Good things in life slip away so easily. This statement is so true. I wanted to cry myself to sleep pondering on that, but I couldn’t even sleep. I ended up sitting on the edge of the bed staring into the cold and empty darkness. But somewhere in me, I was building up confidence – the kind that Max had. If Max could be strong, so could I. We would get over this. I was sure that his parents would think it was just a mistake, and it would all be forgotten in time. After all, we were allowed to talk and laugh together today. I believed it would all be okay soon, just like Nick had said. I fell into sleep believing that.
Sunday came and passed like a flash of light. It was a day when the sun decided to appear again in its full form, blessing the land, not holding back for the first time in weeks. But it wasn’t really blessing Max and me.
The day was spent watching TV and playing games. Xbox games. Computer games. Card games. All kinds of games. Max and I had fun like normal 13-year-olds would, but we never had the room to ourselves. It was either Nick watching us play our games, or Max’s parents sitting beside us on the couch in front of the TV screen. That was fine. I told myself it would all get better.
My parents returned at three o’ clock, and decided that I would have dinner with them. I left at four-thirty, waving Max goodbye as if we would never see each other again. But in our eyes, I could sense a faith burning with a promise. I was able to convince myself that our passion would be there forever if we didn’t let it go willingly.
I was back home at five. The beautiful house welcomed my return, but I didn’t have the mood to admire it. It’d been a rough weekend. All way up to my bedroom, I never stopped thinking how I could fix things with Max’s parents and how long it would take before time eased the tension and there would be a Max and me again.
That was when I saw them. Mum and dad. I was so busy thinking about Max I didn’t even think about how to explain this to my parents, who seemed to already know the story that I was yet to tell. Dad had his hand on Mum’s shoulder, pulling her to him. This was looking serious, and I was prepared for whatever that was about to come. I walked forward without a word.
I silently approached them, looking at the floor most of the time, avoiding eye contact. But instead of words, they simply pulled me into a tight hug.
“We understand, honey,” my mum said softly, patting my back.
Dad was wordless. When I pulled away, I didn’t cry. “I’m sorry,” I said.
“Always returning home late is your fault,” my dad said, “but this isn’t.” That did it. I could no longer hold back my tears. I cried, and my mum cried with me. My dad stood there, pulling us close, as if saying that he would always be there.
My dad continued, “As much as we want to help you with this, it’s hard for us to change another person’s judgment.” He paused, and I nodded slightly. “It will be up to you and Max to convince his parents.” Then I cried, even harder, this time not for Max and me, but because of my parents. I was thankful.
I eventually stopped crying. Dinner was over in heartwarming silence. I was in my room lying on my bed coming up with ways to persuade Max’s parents, and that was when my mobile rang.
“Hey,” I said, “You’re allowed to call?”
“Yeah” The confidence was gone in his voice; there was nothing but sadness in it.
He continued, “I’m sorry all this happened. I should’ve locked the door.”
“It’s not your fault. And you know what? This thing, us being together, it isn’t our fault either.”
“But my parents…”
“Your parents will understand sooner or later that we only want to be with each other. We just have to keep believing that this will all work out. That’s all we need. Trust me, Max.”
“I do, Dave. But don’t you think it’ll be impossible to convince them?”
“It will take time, yes. But someday they’ll understand. My parents understand, and someday yours will, too. I promise.”
“I wish I had your parents!” I could hear he was on the verge of a breakdown.
But I didn’t know how to respond to that, so all I said was “Don’t worry. It’ll be okay.”
“Even if they don’t approve of this, we still have school,” I reminded.
“That’s true…but…wait! Dad, what are you doing? Dave, I…” Then the call ended. And I knew calling back wouldn’t mean anything.
All I could do was to wait for the day they would be willing to accept our relationship. Besides, there was still school. And the fact that our feelings for each other would never go away. So there was nothing to lose. At least not much to lose. We would hold on. We would never give up.
The next morning I woke up with a morning wood that reminded me of Max. Slowly I wrapped my hands around it and stroked it, first tenderly, then increasingly violently. But with every stroke I thought more about Max, and the more I thought about him, the more I wanted to cry, and my eyes hurt. I was so afraid of losing what we had together; I was so scared that it would be taken away by the unfair prejudice in this world. Why did it have to be so unfair?
Stroking my manhood fast hurt, but my heart hurt more. I felt a familiar feeling building up inside of me and soon it was over. But I felt empty and lonely after that. I wasn’t relieved at all.
If anything, it only proved that our relationship was much deeper than the physical level. And I reminded myself once again I would never give up on Max.
On my way to school, I couldn’t think of a day when Max and I went to school separately. However, I concluded that calling him might not be such a good idea. I was afraid it would make things worse if his father had confiscated his phone. I knew I would see him in the campus anyway; I knew our love wasn’t going anywhere with him beside me, at least during every school day. I could live with that, for now.
The campus was crowded as always. Somehow it often felt more crowded on Mondays. Meandering through the crowds to look for Max might have been hard had I not known where he would be. I headed straight for the canteen, where we would have breakfast every day. Max always joked about how he couldn’t stand an entire day of boring classes without a breakfast with milk and fried bacon and scrambled eggs.
I ordered just what he wanted and started looking for him, only to find that the canteen was mostly empty, and that he wasn’t anywhere to be found. Of course. I was late. He was probably already in Math class “preparing” the exercise he didn’t do. Indeed, our form of “preparation” was none other than sharing our answers between a group of friends.
Anyway, I finished my breakfast as quickly as I could and hurried to class. I hadn’t seen Max for almost an entire day, so seeing him in class would be the first pleasant feeling today. Well, just as I predicted I was rather late because the room was almost full. Almost full. But wait. Something was missing. Max. Max was missing. He wasn’t there.
Did he...get grounded…from school? Was that even allowed?
I guess I don’t have to mention that the rest of day passed in grave discontent. I was sitting there every single lesson and yet I felt like I was elsewhere the whole time. I was at my house, watching the two of us make out. I was at the beach, and there was a tent under glazing sunlight; two shadows converged inside. I was at the boulevard, and two teenage boys walked along the path in silence, understanding each other better than anyone else in the world. But eventually I was at Max’s house, and then it was all blurry and unclear; I was back in the classroom, and I didn’t even know what lesson I was having.
Without Max, it was all for nothing.
P.E. was last. When the lesson ended, we all went for a shower. I hoped to find Max there, with his back against the wall, pulling me to him for a hot kiss, just like that time. Those were unforgettable memories, and now it hurt more than ever.
Without him, the day felt like it was ten times longer.
But I believed that he would be back in my life soon. His being grounded had to stop soon. I’d talk to him when he returned to school again. He would return in a day or two, and if not, I would go straight to his house and talk to his parents head-on. Everything was going to be just fine. As long as I was still holding on, I knew deep down that nothing could terminate this bond.
Turning off the shower, I looked down on the wetness and softly whispered to myself, and to someone I cared for deeply, “Max, I’ll see you soon.”
A Love so Star-crossed (gay/young-friends/2012Dec -)
Growing Intimacy (gay/young-friends/2012Nov – 2012Nov)