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...And I will, personally, teach you the five fingered, instant 'sphincter-explosion' technique!!!*

*(Previous Statement May Not Be True)


- My dad called the house today.

Is it weird that I....I just...felt a bit strange about hearing his voice?

I shouldn't. What's changed between the last time that I spoke to him and today? I guess my perspective on what went down between him and my mom had changed slightly. The idea of him just...walking away from us the way he did...I don't really started to rub me raw for the first time. It felt more like I was talking to a stranger than my own father. I'm a bit conflicted about that.

It's not like I hate him or anything. I just found myself making random small talk and wanting to pass the phone off to my mom as soon as possible. The whole situation just felt uncomfortable. Just...yeah...just uncomfortable.

Speaking of which, Brandon sent me a message super early this morning that sounded a bit awkward. Well...not awkward so much as it was oddly timed. He sent it at like 6:30 in the morning. There is no reason whatsoever for a teenage boy to be up at 6:30 in the morning during the Summer. Hell, if it wasn't for work, I doubt I'd ever roll out of bed before noon. But it was basically him saying, " know that I love you more than anything in this world, right? I always have. I always have. Call me later, k?"

Normally, I would look at that message and think that it was super sweet, but...there was something seriously 'off' about the vibe of his message. I wrote back and asked if he wanted to talk for a bit, but I didn't get a message back right away, so I figured that he was busy with other things.

It makes you paranoid to think that your boyfriend might have something awful to tell you. Something that could really hurt. I've allowed Brandon into the deepest parts of my heart and soul, and we agreed on starting over with a clean slate...but I know that I still have a few revelations to lay on him when the time is right. Now...I'm starting to wonder if he has a few painful revelations of his own.

I'm glad that Sam came knocking on my door before I was able to dive too deep into the madness of wondering what was on Brandon's mind today. initial thoughts were starting to drift towards the notion that maybe something happened between him and Stevie yesterday. now...I KNOW that I'm supposed to be trusting him to be faithful, and that I need to have some confidence when it comes to Brandon's love for me. But...this whole 'ex-boyfriend' thing REALLY makes me nervous sometimes. Am I being fair about that? I mean, how would he feel if I was hanging out with Bobby Jinette every Monday? It's not like he wouldn't think that was strange...especially if I kept it a secret from him all Summer long.

Anyway...let me get my thoughts together. I don't have many pages left in this journal to ramble aimlessly like I am.

So...Sam came over, and he checked to make sure that my mom wasn't home before walking to my bedroom and closing the door. Do you know what he said to me? He's like, "Look, I don't want you to freak out or anything, but I heard from Jimmy last night and this morning...and it sounds like he has it out for you, big time, dude."

What the...??? I was like, "What the fuck FOR??? I don't even TALK to Jimmy anymore!"

Sam said, "Doesn't matter. He's hurt, and he's super jealous, and he's pissed that you won't contact him and let him explain himself."

I'm like, "EXPLAIN himself? What is there to explain? He's a goddamn nightmare!" I felt so fucking betrayed at that moment! What kind of a heartless asshole picks a fight with somebody who hasn't done a damn thing to provoke or antagonize him? That doesn't even make any kind of rational sense. I'm like, "What did he say about me?"

And Sam's like, "He's talking about how 'fake' you are, both as a lover and as a friend. He says you led him on and pulled his heart into a relationship with you, just so you could use him for sex and dump him when you were finished with him."

Shocked, I shouted, "That's a fucking LIE!!! That's SUCH a fucking lie, Sam! i would NEVER do that! That's not what happened between us at all! He's making it all up! Don't listen to him! He's a fucking LIAR!!!"

Sam put a hand on my shoulder and gave me a smirk. He giggled while wrinkling up his eyebrows at my reaction. He's like, "Hehehe, calm down, dude. I know he's lying. long have I known you? You wear your heart on your sleeve more than anybody I know. I, honestly, doubt that I could find a sweeter, more compassionate person if I tried. That's not you at all. I know it. Anybody that has ever spoken to you for more than a few minutes knows it too. There's no way that I would believe such a ridiculous lie from someone who is clearly looking to make you look bad. Why the hell would I listen to someone talking shit about my best friend when i already know who you are, through and through. What am I, an idiot? It wouldn't make much sense at all to believe a single bad word that he ever said about you. So no worries on my part, k? Promise."

I'm like, "Why would he even go through the trouble of doing that? I don't even care enough to hate him right now. I'm happy. I'm in love. My life is finally getting back on the right track for the first time in forever. He can walk away and never have to think about me again. If he despises me so much, I'm cool with that. But whatever it was that we had for that first few weeks at the beginning of the's over now. It's been over for a long time. What the fuck is he bitching to YOU for?"

Sam sat on my bed, and he said, "'s no different than what he did to keep you and Brandon apart before the Summer even started. It's the same childish tactics, and they wont have any more significant impact now than they did back then. He just figures that he's miserable, so he can't stand you NOT being miserable with him. But I actually give a shit about your happiness, dude. I WANT you to be happy. I want you and Brandon to get butt naked and ride a big ol' gay rainbow slide into a pot of gold until you're both laughing so hard that it hurts. Hehehe! But that's just me. Still, all of his efforts are in vain. You still got what you wanted, and he's still sad and alone. What else can he do but be mad about it?"

I said, "I swear, Sam...I didn't do anything to hurt Jimmy on purpose. I may have made my mistakes, and I know that I'm partially to blame for..."

Sam stopped me. "No, Billy. Maybe you made some mistakes, and I get it...screwing Jimmy, knowing how he felt about you was a majorly bad idea. But that's over now. You made a decision, you broke it off, you sent your apologies...and it's time for you both to move on. Jimmy's being a fucking asshole by chasing you around like some kind of deranged stalker. But you've got a bright future ahead of you now without him. You've got love in your heart, and true friends who love and care about you, and this uncanny ability to truly attract people to you without much effort at all. You're Billy Chase. I doubt you'll ever have anything to worry about Jimmy whispering false gossip into somebody else's ear, trying to make you look like the jerk in this situation." He said, adding, "When Jimmy looks at his reflection in the mirror tonight, before he goes to bed...he'll know in his heart of hearts that he was a total bastard for even trying to turn me against my best bro. And he'll have to deal with that on his own. Not your problem. Certainly not mine. It's not going to happen. It's sad that he would even try."

The pain I felt was temporary. Intense, but it faded once Sam reassured me that he was standing with me. Just like always. He was the pure definition of a best friend, hands down. And when he stood up to hug me around the shoulders, I almost felt my eyes misting up from the affection I felt coming from him.

This is a level of bonding and appreciation that some people will never ever know. I'm just thankful that I found it in his loving embrace. What kind of human being would I be without it?

I sniffled, "You've always got my back, Sam..."

And he replied, "Damn straight. Until the end of time." He patted me on the back and then let go, telling me, "Listen, Jimmy's being a creep. And I, honestly, don't want anything else to do with him. That kid is bad news. And I'm starting to realize that all he ever did was try to make me another 'you' by latching onto me the way he did. Also not cool. So, I don't know if I'm going to be much help going forward with all of this...but...just know that I'm on your side. Ok? I'm not going to let some 'butt-hurt' son of a bitch tell me who you are as a person. I already know. And I'll take your random mistakes and mishaps over Jimmy LaPlane's bullshit rumors and blatant lies any day. You have my word on that."

I'm like, "Thanks, Sam. I'm done with this whole thing. I just find it hard to even care anymore. I'm not really worried about it."

He said, "Thatta boy! Me either!" Then he said, "If he's not careful, he's gonna end up with me throwing another one of his shoes on the fucking roof! Hahaha!"

Thinking way back to that middle school incident, I had to laugh out loud at the absurdity of it. That seems like it was so long ago! I told Sam, "Asshole behavior aside...hehehe, you still shouldn't have done that to him."

Sam giggled, and said, "Seemed like a good idea at the time. Sue me." Then he asked, "So, moving on to something that's actually important...are we hitting this Jamie Cross party this weekend or what? I'm in a partying mood."

I said, "Yeah. I think that would be cool." But, after a brief pause, I said, "I told Brandon about coming with us yesterday."

Sam was all like, "Really? What did he say?"

I'm like, "Well...I think he wants to go. least, he seems like he's interested in going."

Sam could hear the uncertainty in my voice, and asked, "What does that mean? You don't sound too happy about it."

I hesitated for a moment, and then told him, "I asked him if maybe he'd want to my date. Instead of just a friend."

He tried to hide it, but I heard a little gasp from Sam as his eyes widened slightly. "Dude...are you serious?"

I'm like, "I dunno...maybe?" He looked worried. So I asked, "Do you think that's a mistake?"

He's like, "No! I'm not saying that it's a mistake, it's just..."

I'm like, "You DO! You think it's a mistake. Sam...come on, honest with me, ok?"

And he struggled with the next words that he was planning to allow to come out of his mouth, but eventually he said, "It's just...I thought that you might tell one or two people at a time. A little here, a little there...let the word spread on its own. Among friends, you know? People that you"

I said, "Well...I was thinking that too at first, but...everybody is going to know eventually, right? Why not rip off the tape and get it over with?"

He's like, "Because it fucking HURTS! That's why!" Then he calmed down and said, "Look, whatever you do...I'm with you. sure, ok? You see what happened to Stevie when he moved too fast. I'm just looking out for you. That's all."

I knew that. I knew Sam would stand at my side, no matter what. But I really do think that Brandon and I have come too far together to go running back into hiding again. The last thing I'd ever want is to see the love of my whole life in the hallway and be too scared, too ashamed, to reach out for his hand. Or stare lovingly into his eyes. Or possibly give him the sweetest of kisses on the cheek before he went to his next class and I went to mine. That kind of torture was meant for secrets that are bad. Secrets that are immoral, unlawful, or inhumane and despicable in nature. That's not what Brandon and I are building together. That's not a part of who we are.

How can we love each other while feeling too ashamed to say it out loud? You know?

Anyway, I think Sam understands why I wanted to do things this way. And he's hesitant, but supportive. protective Sam.

I've got to run. Brandon wrote me back while Sam was here, but I didn't get it until just a few minutes ago. Brandon wants us to get together tomorrow and talk. Yeah...'talk'.

He even suggested that we go to the Hill to do it, which has me even more worried than before. I wish he could just tell me what was on his mind already, but...I guess wants to make this a personal affair, so...I'll just have to wait for a little while longer.

PLEASE tell me that it doesn't have anything to do with Stevie! I'm going to break both of his arms and legs myself if I find out he laid a hand on my boyfriend! I'll give that weasel something to be afraid of!!! Believe me!!!

Ok, I'm thinking into this too much. I should go.

Yeah, I'm gonna go. Laters.

- Billy

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