Two Boys

Rocco Paperiello


This story is about relationships between and among teenagers. This includes intimate relationships between young males. If you don't approve or are offended, then how come you're reading this? Go to some other Internet Site. (Of course some people actually cultivate being offended; if that's the case, read right on). As far as detailed descriptive sex acts, I think you may find some good ones in other stories right here on Nifty, but as of now I do not envision a lot of explicit detail in this one.

If, for some legal reason, you are not allowed to read this in your area of the world because of illogical laws, again I will not condone (publicly) anyone breaking the law, so either move or read sentence four. I definitely don't want the thought police after either of our tail ends.

Please, this story is sort of my property, so if you ever want to quote some of it (whatever for I wouldn't know), please e-mail me and also give proper attribution. As of now no one has permission to put this story on another Internet Site.

This story is almost entirely fictional, and autobiographical ONLY in the sense that many of the incidents in the story really happened, but in some cases to different people and under different circumstances. In other words I've simply adapted things that happened in my life to a fictional story. In fact, some aspects of both main characters are in part modeled from my own experiences. Some of my family members are also in this story, and perhaps (definitely) distorted a bit (a lot) at times and sometimes approaching caricature, but since I really don't expect them to sue, I'm taking the chance. All other characters are fictional, except as noted).

I welcome any feedback. Constructive criticism appreciated.

Rocco Paperiello

Most of the next 10 chapters are nearly finished so I'm hoping to have them online pretty quickly. A lot of things will be happening in the next few chapters that will change much for the two boys. Chapter 65, the start of Part III, will see a radical departure for the story, but is integral for almost everything that follows. Hope you all are continuing to enjoy this story.


PART II -- Discoveries

Chapter 59a -- Dan's Story (part a)

On our way to see the races, and so far here, we were talking about everything else BUT what I thought we were going to. I finally asked: "You said you work in the library. How big is it? Jade and I've been doing some research and it's hard to find much about what we're looking for."

Apparently, Dan was as intelligent as his sister. He looked at me with an expression that seemed to say: "Would this subject be the one I think it is?" But he instead replied: "In fact, it's one of the best research libraries in the city. It also has one of the best collections of Jewish culture and Jewish religion around. It IS a Jewish University if you didn't know from its name."

OK, say I'm ignorant, but I DIDN'T know that. But now it seemed obvious.

We all seemed to be looking at each other waiting for the other person to bring up THAT subject. It wound up being Consuelo. "OK, if no body else will do it I will. What both Jade and Rocco want to ask but don't have the nerve is this. Anything good there on homosexuality? Will that get the conversation going where you all wanted it going? And how about I leave you guys at it for a while." And Consuelo walked down to the river.

Dan looked at his sister as she was leaving then smiled. He yelled after her: "I guess it will." And he turned backtoward us. "And to answer my sister`s question, not very much. Unless you're interested in the condemnation of homosexuality in the Livitical Holiness Codes." He turned towards both of us. "There are only a couple interesting books I've searched. I don't know what you've actually seen yet. You've seen the Kinsey Report?"

What the hell did he mean by these Holiness Codes? I wondered if he meant all those "abominations" in Leviticus.

But before I could ask him about that, Jade answered his question. "Yes. Rocco and I have a copy we found at Leary's downtown."

Dan looked surprised. "I never even heard of it until I got into college. It sure made me feel better when I finally found out that I was not as alone as I had thought."

We talked a bit about how we were trying to research some stuff and about the things I had gotten from Father Hearn.

Dan then described his one attempt to talk to a priest. "One day I looked into the mirror and finally acknowledged that I was a homosexual. I said it a few times to get used to the idea. And then fell onto my bed and cried almost uncontrollably for the next hour. But the next morning I awoke with a new determination that I would at least find someone to talk to about my problem and maybe even find a way to change myself. After a lot of thought I decided that I couldn't approach any of the teachers or counselors at school since I could not let any one at school know about my problem. I was also too scared to approach my mother or friends at that time. I finally decided to work up my courage to talk to a priest within the anonymity of the confessional. I am still not sure why I picked a priest since we hadn't gone to church for years. But I thought priests were trained to help people, right? What a disaster that was. The priest actually yelled at me. In this sonorous voice loud enough the whole church had to have heard he said: 'How can you want to be that kind of pervert. I advise you to go to your parents as soon as possible and get the help you need.' I never heard what else he said. I ran crying and almost in shock. It was only a couple hours later that I could go home and think of something else. As if I actually chose to be homosexual. As if I actually liked the idea. As if I really wanted everyone to hate me. As if I wanted to hate myself."

I then brought up the talks I had with Father Hearn. We all had a good laugh when I got to describing the expression on Father Hearn's face when he realized that I was thanking him for helping me conclude there was nothing wrong with being a homosexual."

Dan exclaimed: "You mean you really TOLD him you thought having gay sex was OK, and that God wouldn't condemn you for it!?"

Now Jade looked at both Dan and then at me, a bit confused. He asked: "Gay? What do you mean gay sex?"

"You've never heard the word `gay'?" Dan asked.

I guess I just heard that recently myself. Or rather saw it that newspaper article. But I wasn't used to using it.

Dan continued: "A guy at that bar I went to used it. I guess some people didn't like the word `homosexual.' That word was used originally by psychologists who consider it a pathology." And when I looked at him with a question mark on my face he added: "Something psychologically wrong."

"But what does it mean?" Jade asked. "How can it mean homosexual?"

Dan answered: "Well, I'm not really sure. I just heard a couple people using it. I thought maybe it stood for "good as you," meaning we're just as good as heterosexuals, but don't really know if that's how it originated. I tried to look up the word origin but it seems as if nobody is completely sure. It was definitely used by the 1920s and probably goes back a lot further. One reference I read said it could be derived from gaycat or geycat, a slang term for a tramp or hobo who is new to the road. Gaycats were commonly in the company of older tramps, implying a homosexual relationship."

We talked about this for a while and then I asked: "They used that word gay in the paper. I'm just not used to using it. And what about this bar? Until a bit ago I never even thought there could be any place were homosexuals, or gay people, actually got together. Was that the one the paper said was raided by the police a while back? And how can anyone ever find out about it?"

"I found out about the bar when I saw some graffiti written on the wall of a stall in the men's room on campus. It was painted over a couple days later. I borrowed someone's ID and went several months ago. I guess most people hear about it by word of mouth. It was really weird. I couldn't believe it. There were two people there who I thought were girls until I heard them talk. They were two guys dressed in dresses and everything. They had makeup on a mile thick. And one wasn't even bad looking."

Jade looked at Dan. "Holy shit! That's sick. I can't believe anyone would do that."

I piped in: "But why be a girl if you aren't attracted to girls? That don't make sense to me."

"There's a lot of different kinds of people out there. And I been reading up on some of this. Besides sexual identity, there is also gender identity. They are two separate things. And one of the guys I talked to was really interesting, even if weird. I only went one more time. With a rare exception, I just didn't like the people there, even if I could almost feel free for the first time in years. Most of them were only trying to find someone for sex."

We talked about the bar and possible other places where homosexual, I mean gay people met. He didn't know of any others. And it WAS the one raided. Dan said: "Glad I didn't go there that night. Quite a few of the people ended up in the hospital. And I don't believe the story the police gave. How many people you know would try to attack a policeman who was brandishing a billy club?"

Jade and I both looked stunned. We finally realized I think for the first time that we could even be seriously beaten for being how we were -- by the very people who were supposed to protect us.

Dan continued: "One thing I do know, however, there are a whole lot of us out there. I just wish we didn't have to hide from everyone. You can't believe how ecstatic I was when Con told me about you two guys. Except for the guys I met at the bar, I don't know another single person like us. I still can hardly believe it. Just having this conversation is amazing to me. You can't believe how lonely it is." Then he looked at us. "Or maybe you can."

Chapter 59b -- Dan's Story (part b)

Dan started to have this wistful look and even had tears showing. Rocco was starting to ask something when I leaned over and whispered: "You do realize I hope that Dan has tears in his eyes."

Rocco I think changed what he was about to say. He did remark: "You know, I never realized how really lucky Jade and I have been. To have found each other at all now seems almost like a miracle." He leaned over and hugged me. Consuelo returned just in time to see it. "Just remember you two. This is a public place."

I was feeling great. And lucky. "Thank you Mama," I thought.

Dan watched as we hugged and gave out a big sigh. "I wish I could find someone some day. It's just hard. There must be a lot of us out there but everybody is afraid to let anyone else know. And those that aren't afraid, are too flaming weird about it, or just looking for sex. How the hell did you guys find each other anyway!?"

We talked about this for a while. Eventually Consuelo added: "I know how you must have been feeling Dan, so when I discovered Jade and Rocco, I just HAD to have them meet you."

"I just hope nobody else discovers us Consuelo. It's getting complicated enough as it is." I was a little disturbed that Consuelo figured us out. I started thinking we'd better be more circumspect.

Suddenly we realized the first race had begun. We were soon all shouting along with everyone else. It didn't help though. Temple came in last.

We talked a lot more about how Rocco and I met, and how Rocco was helping me with my schoolwork. Also about how now some of the white kids from his neighborhood, and Negroes from my neighborhood even played together at times.

"And that's another thing. I was afraid to ask earlier, but now that you brought it up, how the hell did a Negro meet up with a white kid and become friends? At the schools I went to, everybody kept to their own group. I had to stay with the Hispanics. The black kids would not accept me since I don't look black at all. Nobody believed me when I said my Dad was Negro. Con and I don't really look like we're even related. And my aunt and uncle won't admit I even exist after Mom told them about me. And my Mom. . ." Dan stopped and just looked away.

Then Dan suddenly jumped up and walked away saying something about a rest room. But I could hear the sudden tears in his voice. I looked first at Rocco, then Consuelo. It was Rocco that asked the question.

"What happened between Dan and your Mom?"

Hello everybody:

When I saw what Jade had written from what was said on that day at the sculling races, I knew I had to rewrite it properly.  This is MY part of the story and I insist it be accurate.  (OK, maybe Dan's too).  So the next part is the corrected version.  Dan and I got together and put this together.  I just added my own small introduction that I had Jade promise to include.

~ Consuelo ~

                   Consuelo's introduction:

This happened almost two years ago so I am trusting my memory a lot. (Fortunately Dan was able to add a few details I couldn`t). Dan still had that terrible letter from Mom so that helped also. (Please do not let Dan know this, but I have always looked up to him and believe that perhaps I am a better person for him being in my life).

So anyway Dan, Jade, Rocco, and I were sitting among the cherry and dogwood trees that lined that portion of the Schuylklll River. They were all in bloom. It was a sunny and blissful day, just right for the first day of the season with shorts. Dan was in a very good mood for a change, not that he's in bad moods a lot, but he tends more toward the melancholy. Rocco of course was acting like the world revolved around him. Though I guess he now includes Jade within that circuit. Jade is more like some tragic figure out of Dickens -- full of pathos and angst, and possesses a strength of character I have rarely seen in any boy our age. I was really starting to go for him, until I started getting signals that something was just slightly amiss. (Only because of knowing my brother, however, was I able to home in so easily into where Jade`s affections really lie). Sigh! I hope Rocco realizes just how fortunate he is to have Jade so intimately in his life. Rocco, conversely, is a strange mixture of intelligence and cluelessness. His personality poses a conundrum, as it possesses such a polarity of attributes. Carlotta I believe homed in on the one aspect that perhaps redeems him. She claimed that after she got to know him a bit, she believed him to be one of the more caring individuals she had known. I believe that she may be correct. I suppose I shall withhold judgment for now. But for both their hearts I hope he does a considerable amount of maturing real soon. (I couldn't believe he took such a risk by kissing Jade right in a public forum like he did. He is definitely too na´ve).

Well, I guess we better get to the crux of the story. The exact beginning is perhaps necessarily vague. Things didn't happen all at once. I didn't even realize at first how serious things were. For a while I just thought that Mom was just mad at Dan for something he did. I could never find out what. Much later I found out from Dan that he finally went to Mom about what he called his problem. He was a Junior in High School then. Well he had been dating all along and Mom simply refused to believe him. She kept telling him when he meets the right girl and all that stuff. She kept introducing him to everybody she could find. That went on for quite some time. Dan admitted to me that he finally couldn't take it anymore. They finally had a showdown one night when Dan simply refused to go out on a date Mom had fixed him up without even telling Dan about first. That's when I first heard one of them use the word homosexual. I knew what it was but couldn't figure out why they were arguing about it. The word kept coming up and I wondered who they were talking about. I guess I was pretty naive about it all. Believe it or not, it plain never occurred to me that Dan was that person.

I asked Dan the next day what was the matter between him and Mom. I had never seen her so upset. I'd never seen him so upset either. But I was all ready to kill my brother for his contretemps of the day before. I had just gotten home from school and Mom was still at work. So I caught him in the kitchen and just asked him. I always believed it is so much better to simply be forthright about things. I got right to the point.

Consuelo and Dan's written text:

"Dan, stop right there and tell me what happened yesterday to get Mom so upset."

"Sorry Con, but I can't tell you. It's too complicated." And he started walking away.

But I would none of it. I walked after him and barged right into his room when he tried to close the door. "Dan, you can't make me move out of here `till you tell me what happened. I've never seen Mom so upset. Not even when she talks about Dad. So tell me. I will hate you forever if you upset Mom like that and won't even tell me why."

Dan looked at me with such a sudden sadness I instantly became frightened.

"Look Con, I know we don't hang out a lot but I always believed that we did got along pretty well. I have always admired your spirit. I just wished I had some your fiery determination. Mom is too much for me."

Dan turned away.

"Dan, we will have this out now. If you think you can not contest Mom, you surely can't thwart me. I will find out eventually so you may as well give me your version first."

"What the hell. You may as well know. Just please promise nothing you hear will leave this house. I know you'll keep your word -- so promise."

"OK." I was so apprehensive I didn't say any more. I had finally just added up the numbers and reached four. But I was determined to hear it from Dan himself.

"I told Mom a while ago that I liked guys, and not girls." He stopped, waiting for me to say something. I just stared. "Come on Con, say something!"

As Consuelo stared at her brother, she got more and more angry. How could her own brother do that to their own Mom? How could he hurt her that way? She was barely dating again after their Dad had left years ago. She thought that her mother was finally able to be happy again, and now this. She got even more furious as she thought about how hurt her Mom must be. Finally she got up and walked to her brother. She was only a couple inches shorter. And not intimidated. Suddenly she slapped him as hard as she could. She seemed to be in a daze. She was not used to yielding to her emotions. Then she burst into tears and ran to her own room, slamming the door behind her.

Dan sat there in his own daze. He never expected that kind of reaction from his sister. They really liked each other and she was smart. Really smart. He always believed she had gotten the best from both parents. He finally realized that all she was thinking about was Mom. Not him at all. Damn! Now what? He couldn't take much more. His Mom said that she'd never let a marišon live under her roof. It was a disgrace to God. And his mother had not gone to church for years. They used to be all Catholic, but nobody had gone to church since their father had suddenly left years ago.

Dan started crying himself. His life had gone to hell. If the kids at school ever found out he'd better not ever show up again. He wouldn't survive. Why had he been so stupid and tell his Mom? But he knew why. He simply had to connect with someone. Had to share with someone what he was. What his problem was. He really thought his mother would eventually understand. But she simply refused to think about anything but what a disgrace he was to the family. She even started yelling that it had to have been his father's fault. That man proved he was no good, and now his son was no good. Daniel wasn't her son anymore.

He cried harder. He lost his Mom. He would never have believed that a few months ago. He really loved his Mom.

And now Con. He couldn't stand to lose both. Working up his courage he finally stopped his tears by brute force of will and walked mechanically to his sister's room. He knocked. And then knocked louder.

"Come on Con. Please let's talk. Con!"

He stood rooted to the spot for minutes. Finally he knocked again. "Con! I can be as stubborn as you. Open this door!"

She did. She was wiping her own tears. She left the door open and walked to her bed.

"Please Con, we need to talk. I couldn't stand it if I lost you too!"

She looked up. "What do you mean `lost me too'?"

"Mom won't let me live here anymore. She said I have to move out."

"I don't believe you. You're lying. Mom wouldn't do that!"

"Yes she did. She's even already rented an apartment for me. It's on the other side of the school, almost two miles from here. I guess she couldn't even stand me near her. I just found a note in my room and a key when I got home from school today. She wrote that she never wanted to see me again."

"I can't believe you. I hate you like hell right now, and I wouldn't even do that. Where's the letter she wrote?"

Consuelo got even angrier as she read the hastily written note.


I will never understand how you can disgrace me and our family this way. You refuse to be a man and live like one. I will not allow a marišon under my roof. I will be home later this evening and do not wish to see you ever again. You are no longer my son. And Consuelo is no longer your sister. I intend to forbid her to see you. Here is a key to an apartment I have rented for you. I will pay the rent and groceries until you're 18. That is all I will do. Start assuming some responsibility for your own life. Maybe some day you can learn what a man's supposed to be.

It wasn't even signed. Consuelo didn't know what had shocked her more. Her brother's actions or her own mother's. She looked up, probably more unsure about things than she had her entire life. He brother was crying. And he NEVER cried. He refused to cry when he was six and had broken his leg falling out of that tree. With the jagged bone stuck through his own flesh. He refused to cry when he was 10, and three bigger kids beat him so badly when he claimed he was a Negro. He refused to cry when his best friend since first grade moved away when he was twelve.

But he was crying right now. The earth had come unglued from its orbit. And her Mom simply could not have done this. Abandoned her own son. Yet she did. She hated her brother as much as she'd hated anything her whole life. How could he do this to their family? But she couldn't do as her mother had until she at least understood.

"Dan. Sit down and please tell me why you're doing this to our family."

Dan collapsed onto the side of the bed. "The only thing I've done is simply tell you and Mom how things are. What I am. I just couldn't pretend any longer."

"Pretend what? I can't understand why you're doing this. Only perverts do those things. You want to be a pervert?"

"Look Con. You're one of the smartest people I know. Answer the question for yourself. Why would I choose to be a homosexual?"

Consuelo seemed to be arguing with herself. She got up and paced about. She swung around. "Dan help me understand. I can only come up with one answer. You wouldn't. But then why did you?"

"Con, please. You're smarter than that. Don't believe all that propaganda you think you know. The answer is quite simple. I would never choose to be this way. Why would I? I tried to deny it for so long myself. But eventually had to admit it to myself. I like boys; not girls. It's simply the way I am. It's not a choice! Don't you see? IT'S NOT A CHOICE!"

"But you must have done something! What did you do?"

"Why do you think I had to have done something? Con, all I have done was eventually discover I can only like other boys and not girls. I've done nothing other than that. I was just born this way. I don't care what all the asshole psychologists say. I DID NOTHING! I MADE NO CHOICE! Do you think anyone would actually CHOOSE to be this way? Would you?"

"I'm trying Dan. But this is different from everything I've heard, or thought. How come you didn't tell Mom all this?"

"You think I didn't? She simply refuses to believe me."

Consuelo went and sat next to her brother. She was still mixed up about what she actually believed, but she WANTED to believe her brother. Besides really hating him right now, she also loved him too. "All right. Tell me about it. Make me understand. How did all this start? I guess I mean, when did you first suspect things were wrong?"

He didn't like her use of the word `wrong.' But they started talking. An hour later they were still talking. There was even a laugh here and there as Dan started talking about certain girls he dated.

"Please never tell Mom about this, but I even once tried to have sex with a girl. To prove to myself I could. Remember Angelina? The girl I dated about a year ago? Well it was at her house and her parents were away for the evening. And she was willing. More than willing. She was no angel, I clue you. But I eventually just couldn't. There we were, naked, and I simply deflated. I couldn't stay hard. And it felt so wrong. I can't explain it. I even tried to think about Mark. He was my current fantasy boy at that time. And it even worked for a while. I was even able to eventually, well you know. But every time I though of Angelina, of the girl I was with, I simply couldn't keep going. I finally left."

Consuelo simply stared at him for a minute. Her brother and she talked about a lot of things, but never the actual descriptive acts. She was embarrassed but realized Dan must be pretty desperate to make her understand. "Mark?! You mean as in quarterback Mark Daniels? He's that way too?"

"Unfortunately no. Or I really don't think so. I just fantasized about him at times."

Consuelo got up and paced again. "OK, I have to believe you, but it's hard to accept." She saw his reaction to her words and quickly added: "Not you Dan. That's not what I mean. It's just hard to make my self actually believe all this. I mean, I think my brain does, but not the inside me. Just give me time. Please."

"OK Con. Thanks for listening and trying to understand. I really couldn't handle it if I lost you too. It just hurts so much right now. Can you understand how much it hurts?"

"Yes. But we're all hurting. You, Mom, and me. But you're still my brother. I'm still your sister. Let's get going."

She stood up and started to leave the room.

"Where are you going?"

"Basement. Come on. We need a few suitcases if we're going to get you moved tonight."

"But you know what Mom said. She. . ."

Consuelo never let him finish. "Don't be stupid. Let's go." And they did. He should have remembered. Consuelo ALWAYS got her way. "By the way, do you have money to get a cab? I don't know how we're gonna get all your stuff moved otherwise."

End of reconstruction.

Finally Consuelo just stopped. Maybe she was thinking about something really sad. There were a few tears in her eyes. Rocco and I sat there digesting what we had just heard. I thought that Dan had a lot more guts than I seemed to. I was sure glad he at least had Consuelo. Then I heard a lot of shouting. The next race had just started. And we just sat in silence for a while. Each with our own thoughts.

Sometime during the race, Dan had come back. He had been away for quite a while. He smiled at his sister. He knew his sister would have filled in for him.

When the race was over he spoke up. "Con, did you finish the whole story?"

"Yes. And I told the correct version. The one where I explained you were an idiot most your life but I still loved you." They both smiled. It was a sort of private joke between them. She turned toward me and Rocco. "One thing I might add was that I eventually realized that Dan was the exact same brother I had my whole life. Then the choice was easy. I just hate hiding everything from Mom. She still pays his rent. But that's all. And she doesn't even know he took in a roommate. But he needs to get through college and it's only right. Neither of us feels the slightest guilt. I just wished he hadn't moved so far away."

I could tell Rocco was still uneasy after hearing this story. He finally half said to himself: "I wonder how MY parents will really react? And if I stay with Jade, they eventually have to find out." And I was wondering almost the exact same thing. How could Rocco even survive if not at home? And I could almost hear the worry circling round his head.

Dan smiled and said: "Well, at least you guys have each other. You guys give me hope. If you can find each other, then maybe I can find someone. There has to be a way. Maybe I'll have to screw up my courage and just start letting people know who I really am. Or if either of you decide you need a change." He looked at his sister: "Or maybe Con can find someone who doesn't already have a boyfriend."

"No way! How fair is it that I finally find a boy I felt I could really fall for and he's like my brother? That's simply not fair! The next one I find will be for me!" She looked at me and I was too surprised to say anything.

Dan again made some remark about either Rocco or I, if we decided to look elsewhere for a new boyfriend. Consuelo then said something about even finding a boyfriend for herself wasn't that easy. She wanted romance, but all guys wanted was sex.

Rocco and I were both amused by their interplay, but if I knew my White-boy at all, he had to be thinking. And Jade would have been pretty close. Rocco had been thinking; he turned toward me: "What about the future? Our future. Can we survive financially? Or even emotionally? And even if we do, can we REALLY make it as a couple? How come so many young couples don't? And they have all the support of their family and friends. We have to make it without all that! Damn it! It WILL work! I will MAKE it work!"

I looked over at Rocco. "Hay Rocco, do you tell them or do I?"

"You." Was all he said.

Consuelo asked: "Tell us what?"

I just started: "There's one . . ."

But then the last race began, and the noise got so loud it was impossible to be heard without shouting. And Temple came in last again. But the entire afternoon was great. We had a new ally. A couple new allies. And of course being here with my own White-boy made anything worthwhile. I moved over and we held each other close. A few minor stares but who cares? Dan seemed to be a bit envious. The crowd started to leave, but we remained. Each of us seemed to be involved in our own thoughts. Eventually I remembered what I had let slip to Joey.

"Oh, Consuelo. I just remembered I needed to tell you something. I accidentally let it slip to a friend of mine this morning that you had an older brother. Sorry, but it just slipped out."

"Who is it?"

"Do you remember Joey Whittenger? He's actually a good guy."

"Yeah. If it's who I think I remember, he's the Joey in Math class with us?" I nodded. "He is a nice guy. So I guess not a big deal. Even if he asks me about Dan, he doesn't really know our family. And he doesn't really know my cousin either. I'll handle things."

Rocco then got their attention. "Jade was going to say this but the last race started. So I'll tell you." He had their attention now. "Jade and I are actually more than boyfriends. We intend to stay together. Forever. I guess you could say we're engaged."

That last caused a reaction. Consuelo got in the first question. "Just what do you mean engaged?"

"Just what it usually means. We intend to get married!"

"But boys can't marry each other. That doesn't make sense." Then Consuelo laughed. Her brother, however, seemed intrigued. He asked: "You're serious aren't you?"

"Of course we are. I don't care what anyone else does, says, thinks, or believes. We WILL get married. No one can stop us. Even if we can't find someone to perform an actual ceremony, we're STILL going to get married."

Consuelo wasn't convinced, however. "But marriage is between a boy and a girl." Then she smiled. "Which of you is the girl? Which one will have the babies?" She looked and suddenly she realized that Rocco wasn't kidding. He was serious. "OK, what am I missing?"

Rocco continued: "Look, why can't a marriage be for two boys? Can't we love each other like any other couple? And you don't need to be able to have children to get married. Look at all the people that really can't have children. Does that mean they can't be married either?"

Consuelo remarked: "Wow. You guys really ARE serious. You've thought about this a lot. But talk about shotgun weddings. Only now it's the couple holding the gun on the preacher. `Marry us or else'. Wow. What an idea!"

I was smiling at the image myself. So was Rocco. I finally joined in. "No date set yet, but when we do, we will actually look for a minister who will agree to marry us. I can't believe there isn't someone. With all the homosexuals in the country, you'd thing at least some of them were ministers. And all we need is to find ONE who will agree with us."

Rocco continued. "Look, even if we can't find a minister to marry us it doesn't matter. Even according to our church, a minister doesn't actually do the marrying. He's only a witness to the marriage. Two people marry each other. If need be, we'll just let God be the witness!"

We were about the only people still there. The nearest was about a hundred yards away. I leaned over, pulled my White-boy tight and kissed him. A really proper kiss. He melted. We finally came up for air. We had a very wide eyed brother and sister looking at us. Finally Consuelo spoke up. "Holy shit. I just never saw two guys kiss before. Not like that. That takes some getting used to."

Dan seemed amused. "I second that `holy shit'. You guys just made me the most envious person on the planet. But damn! Out it the open?"

I asked: "What? Someone going to arrest us? We're not in the south? Interracial couples are allowed to get married in Pennsylvania. Just don't cross into Maryland."

Consuelo laughed. And then Dan. They finally realized the irony of the statement. White-boy and I had a good laugh over it a while back when I mentioned we could get a lot of grief not only from anti-homosexual people, but segregation types also.

I then just remembered something else. I turned and looked up at both Consuelo and Dan. I said: "And your own parents wouldn't have been allowed to have married in almost 20 states. You mentioned that after that movie. But did you know that right now in Arizona, neither of you would even be allowed to marry ANYONE! I looked it up."

Now I had their attention. Both started shouting that I was crazy. "What do you mean we can't marry in Arizona? That's crazy."

"Well, while Rocco and I were looking for stuff on homosexuality a while back, I just happen to see this book about marriage laws. It went state by state and Arizona was close to the beginning. Now the book was several years old, but if it hasn't been changed, they have a couple anti-misogyny (or something like that) laws. But how they're worded is this. A Caucasian can't marry any non-Caucasian or their descendants. And a non-Caucasian isn't allowed to marry any Caucasian or any of their descendants. Well, if you think about it, that means anyone who is already half and half can't marry ANYONE!"

There was a sudden barrage of talking, but it was Consuelo that out shouted everyone else: "Well, I can't believe they actually enforce it that way. That's just preposterous. No law can be that stupid!"

I answered: "I couldn't believe it myself until I read it several times. But that's not all. You just said that it couldn't be enforced that way but in fact it was! It said there was a case in 1942 where a part Indian was barred from marrying a white woman. It went to the Arizona Supreme Court and they ruled that since he was part Indian and part white he could not only not marry the woman, he was barred from marring ANYONE!"

That brought on another barrage of arguing.

Rocco looked at me finally and asked: "That's amazing, but how come you didn't show me the book?"

"That was when you found something you got all excited about and it just slipped my mind."

That kept the conversation heated almost all the way to Dan's apartment. A bit later Dan explained what he had meant about our kissing: "Arrest hell. I was thinking that someone might kill you!"

Eventually Dan drove Jade, Consuelo, and me to the bus stop on Roosevelt so we only had one transfer. It was getting late.

On the way home we had the same thing on our minds. How can we both survive long enough to get through college without anyone finding out? It definitely wasn't fair. If we were a boy and girl, we could shout our love from the rooftops.

As we were walking toward Rocco's door, he suddenly turned and stopped. But he kept staring at the ground. I just waited. He was in one of his really thinking moods. I figured he was thinking about this most the way home. "Jade, please don't think I'm just being my usual religious self. This is too important to me. But just what can God be thinking? Are we really part of his plan for people? I had thought I had made sense out of things, but if we always have to hide ourselves, I just don't know."

I had no answer. I can only say one thing. "Love can't be wrong. Just think on that and we will take things as they come." He looked up and smiled.

"OK. But I'm still going to think about these things. Let's exchange lockets again. Here's the silver one."

I gave him the bronze one. It felt each time we exchanged them we were exchanging a part of ourselves.

Rocco then said: "Too bad I have to keep it hidden at home."

Copyright 2006 by Rocco Paperiello