SUMMARY: At a time of national turmoil, the lives of four boys become connected as each struggles to accept his sexuality and to address the challenges he faces in life. To the extent the boys succeed in coming to grips with those challenges, it may be in ways that prove surprising or troubling. This story is also being published on my blog and you can find a longer synopsis there. While some events, locations and features in the story have been moved forward or back in time for dramatic and other purposes, it takes place during an era when prejudice against homosexuals is rampant and the gay revolution in America is still in its infancy. Italics are typically used within the story to indicate what a character is thinking or saying to himself. Any resemblance to any person living or dead is purely coincidental.

WARNING: Sex is not the primary focus of this story. If you're looking for erotic content, you'll do much better with other stories on Nifty. While sexual content is secondary and incidental, the story does include some scenes that depict sex and violence, sometimes graphically depending upon the characters and circumstances involved. For that reason, the story is intended for mature audiences only. If you do not wish to read such material or it is illegal for you to do so, please look elsewhere. The story remains the property of the author and may not be reproduced in any form without written permission. It is protected by the copyright laws of the United States and other countries. You may download a single copy to read offline and to share with others as long as you credit me as the author, but you may not use this work for commercial purposes. You may not use any of the characters, bars or other fictional locations described in the story in your own work without my explicit permission. Nor may you use, alter, transform, or build upon this story in any way.

AUTHOR NOTES: This is my first effort at writing a story. As a general rule, I only plan to publish one chapter a week, usually on Thursdays, but there will no chapter next Thursday (December 29, 2011). Instead, the story will resume in January. If you find this chapter confusing, there is a discussion of it here. This story may or may not be moved to a different section than this one in the near future, but I can't tell you where or when because I don't make those decisions. If you don't find it here, you'll have to look around for yourself. The latest chapter will always be posted on my blog before being published here. You may want to bookmark the location of my blog in the event you cannot find the story here at some point in the future and you wish to continue reading it: As always, comments and constructive criticism are welcome. Flames will be ignored. If you would like to let me know what you think, feel free to contact me at Thanks for reading the story. I hope you enjoy it.

THE PREVIOUS CHAPTER: In Chapter 27, Danny teaches Tommy the ins and outs of hustling and how to protect himself. He also introduces Tommy to Washington's gay scene, showing him around different parts of the city and introducing him to its many gay bars and clubs. The friendship between the two boys deepens. Eventually they get high together and then have fun back at Ray's place. Not too long after that, the time comes for Danny to decide what he will do. He chooses to remain in Washington and that evening he and Danny take their place at the Wall outside the Café Palermo. Nervous, Tommy fantasizes about escaping, but chooses to remain. The evening is slow, but the men who show up focus on Tommy. His first two encounters are profitable and don't amount to very much. But the third is different, leaving Tommy ashamed, embarrassed and angry. When he and Danny finally go back to Ray's place, Tommy throws up. Unable to get to sleep, he tosses and turns in bed, replaying what happened in the hotel room over and over in his mind. Finally, Danny offers himself to Tommy. Tommy accepts, but it's only later that he understands exactly what happened and why. Alone and about to find himself on the streets, Tommy vows to get control of his life as fast as he can and never to lose control again.


Part III - Desperation, Degradation and Despair


As I walk this land of broken dreams,

I have visions of many things.

But happiness is just an illusion,

Filled with sadness and confusion.

What becomes of the brokenhearted,

Who had love that’s now departed?

I know I’ve got to find

Some kind of peace of mind, baby.

The roots of love grow all around,

But for me they come a-tumblin’ down.

Every day heartaches grow a little stronger,

I can’t stand this pain much longer!

I walk in shadows searching for light,

Cold and alone, no comfort in sight.

Hoping and praying for someone who’ll care,

Always moving and goin’ nowhere.

What becomes of the brokenhearted,

Who had love that’s now departed?

I know I’ve got to find

Some kind of peace of mind

Help me

Please ...

I’m searching though I don’t succeed,

But someone look, there’s a growing need.

All is lost, there’s no place for beginning,

All that’s left is an unhappy ending.

Now what becomes of the brokenhearted

Who had love that’s now departed?

I know I’ve got to find

Some kind of peace of mind

I’ll be searching everywhere

Just to find someone to care

I’ll be looking everyday

I know I’m gonna to find a way

Nothing’s gonna stop me now

I’ll find a way somehow

I’ll be searching everywhere

I know I’ve got to find a way ...


Please check the Author Notes in the header above if you haven’t already done so

There are some holiday treats waiting for you here. The password is love :-)