The following is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to persons living or deceased is purely coincidental. This story depicts sexual situations between minor males including incest and if reading such is illegal where you reside or you are not at least 18 years of age, please read at your own risk. This work is the property of the author, Kewl Dad, and should not be reposted or reproduced without his permission.

Nifty needs your support.
Please give generously by clicking on the link below.


The Reynolds Twins

By: Kewl Dad

Chapter 21
It's all in your head

"Jeremy...come on, let's go. You're gonna be late for your date," Isaac yelled up the stairs.

"I'm coming, I'm coming...I had to change...again."

"Bro, it's just a date. Relax, you're gonna rupture something if you don't."

"How do I look?" Jeremy said as he skidded to a halt at his brother's feet.

"Wow, hot...did you grab a condom?" Isaac teased.

"It's not like that bro, we're just going to eat in the mall and then go to a movie."

"I'm joking, relax. You look good though, just be charming and most of yourself."

"Make up your mind, do you want me to be charming or be myself?" Jeremy joked.

"I don't know what you're worried about. It's just Dee. You sit with her every day at lunch, what's the big deal?"

"You's the leg," Jeremy said looking forlorn.

"I don't understand. You're not gonna tell her that on the first date are you?"

"Yeah, I am. I've decided that if it's going to make a difference I want her to know up front."

"You know bro, I got a lot of respect for you and if this is what you want to do then...go for it. least let her get to know you a little before you drop the news on her. At least let her eat her burger or whatever."

"I know, I'll wait till the time is right, but I don't want that hanging over us."

"Okay, well...if we don't get going you're gonna miss your date so...come on."

When they picked Deane up Jeremy was surprised at how rundown the apartments she lived in were. He knew her mom had a hard time making ends meet and that Deane wore thrift store clothing and didn't have the sort of things that most teenagers had, but knowing and seeing were two very different things.

"You look nice," Jeremy said when Deane appeared at the door wearing a pair of jeweled jeans and a lacy pink top. What Jeremy didn't know was that Deane's mother had somehow found money in the budget to buy her the outfit at Walmart.

"Thanks, you look handsome," she said blushing.

When they got to Isaac's car, Jeremy opened the back door for Deane and helped her get in before closing it. As he scooted in on the other side he turned to her and smiled. He couldn't believe how pretty Deane looked tonight. Was that makeup she was wearing? And her hair looked so soft and pretty.

"This is my chauffeur Isaac," Jeremy joked.

"Hello ma'am," Isaac said grinning.

"I know your brother from school...remember?" Deane laughed, "Thank you Isaac for driving us."

"Yeah, thanks bro," Jeremy said sincerely, "I owe you."

"No prob bro."

"Are you hungry?" Jeremy said turning to his date.

"A little, I'm kind of nervous though," she said smiling.

"Me too, but we got nothin' to be nervous about, right?"

"No, it's not like we don't know each other or anything," she laughed, "We see each other everyday at school."

"I'm really glad you said yes when I asked you out," Jeremy said blushing.

"How could I say no? I'm just sorry it took you so long to ask me," she chuckled.

"You mean...uh, that you've been wanting me to ask you out?"

"Yeah, for a while now. You boys are always so shy though," she said grinning, "sometimes I think girls should do the asking."

"That would be fine by me," Jeremy said smiling, "anyway I finally asked and I'm really happy."

"Me too," she said gazing into Jeremy's eyes.

"Did I mention you look pretty tonight?"

"Yeah, I think so. Thanks though, I actually feel pretty for once."

"You're always pretty, what I meant was you're...well, beautiful tonight. Stunning and awesome."

Deane giggled, "Don't lay it on too thick Jeremy, but thank you."

"I bought the tickets online so we won't have to wait in line as long. I got us good seats too."

"Wow, great. I didn't know you could do that."

"Sure, the internet is great. You can do all kinds of things and never have to leave home."

"Well, we could have just stayed home and Skyped I guess," she kidded.

"Nooo...I didn't mean that," he laughed, "I...can't hold your hand like this," he said taking her hand, "if we we're just Skyping."

Deane smiled and shivered a little at Jeremy's touch. She knew she liked Jeremy, but she didn't know what a gentleman he was until tonight....and so handsome it nearly took her breath away. Squeezing his hand gently she smiled and leaned into him and kissed him on the cheek.

In the rear view mirror Isaac witnessed the kiss and smiled. He had heard their conversation and it was obvious to him that not only did his little brother have a crush on Deane, but she was crushing on him as well. Ah, puppy love, he chuckled to himself, ain't it sweet?

When they got to the mall Isaac dropped them off at the south entrance and they said goodbye.

"Just call me when you're ready bro and I'll be here in like ten minutes."

"You got it, and bro...thanks again."

"Have fun you two and don't do anything I wouldn't," he teased as Jeremy closed the door.

The food court was packed when they arrived and there were lines at most of the eating places and after deciding on Arby's they got in line and visited as they waited. 

"I heard this movie is very funny," Deane said, "Thanks for letting me pick."

"That's okay, I don't care what movie it is as long as I'm there with you."

Deane smiled and took Jeremy's hand and held it as they waited, "How did I not know you were so sweet?" she teased.

"I don't know, I try to spread the word," Jeremy teased.

Deane laughed, "Well, now that I know..."


"We'll just have to see, won't we?"

Jeremy's heart was beating fast and his stomach was all tied up in knots, but he thought it was the most amazing feeling ever. He thought about his brother teasing him about having a condom and he realized sex was the furtherest thing from his mind. He tried not to think about what had happened with Jaden and Jimmy, and he knew he'd never ask. He knew he should be jealous or upset, but he didn't care about all that. If Deane was happy, he was happy. However, if things got serious between them he'd expect her to stop all that, if...things got serious.

"What are you thinking?" Deane asked pulling him back to the now.

"Oh, nothing, just how much fun I'm having and how nice it is to be here with you."

"What fun?" she laughed, "So far we haven't done anything but hold hands and stand in the line at Arby's."

"Even that's fun with you," Jeremy said giving her a little smile.

"You are sweet," she said smiling, "Jeremy?"


"We're next," she chuckled.

When they had their food they found a table as far away from the crowd as possible and settled in to share their meal. Taking a bite of his roast beef sandwich Jeremy watched Deane with loving eyes. Even the way she ate was cute, taking little bites and chewing daintily, her cute little nose twitching as she did so. 


"Yes Deane."

"Yes what?" she asked giggling.

"Huh, oh," he said blushing, "I'm sorry...what did you want to say?"

"Just that...well, I'm not good with words, but...I've liked you for a long time and I hope you like me too."

"Then yes was the right answer. I've liked you since the first day we met. I wanted to talk to you and get to know you better, but I guess I was just too shy or unsure or something."

"Why? You're cute and nice and well..." she blushed, "a real hunk. Any girl would be happy to be with you."

"But I don't want to be with just any girl, I want to be with you," Jeremy said looking sad.

"Why are you looking all sad Jeremy? Is something wrong?"

"Maybe...there's something I need to tell you. I'm not sure what you'll think about it and you may not want to be with me...I mean if you were ever considering it."

Deane was confused and it showed in her voice, "Wait, what could be that bad, are you really a girl in a boy's body or something?" she teased.

"I wish," Jeremy snorted, "worse."

"Well, are you going to tell me or make me die of curiosity?"

"We should eat first," Jeremy said grabbing a curly fry and dipping it in ketchup.

"Okay, but as soon as we finish we're gonna go out to the mall and find a nice quiet place and talk."

"Okay, I promise."

Jeremy was really too nervous to eat now, but he wasn't about to show Deane just how nervous. He just hoped he didn't wind up puking later. 

Deane ate slowly and Jeremy had to wait for her to finish, all the time thinking about how best to tell Deane his secret and running all the scenarios over and over in his head.

At last Deane ate her last fry and sucked down her last bit of soda. She wasn't nearly as nervous as Jeremy, perhaps because she thought she already knew what he was about to reveal, but mostly because there wasn't much he could tell her that would change how she felt about him.

Gathering up their trash they deposited it in the trash can and Deane took Jeremy's hand and led him out into the mall. Steering him toward the little fountain in the middle and to a bench she sat down and pulled him with her.

"Now Jeremy, what is so bad that you think I wouldn't want to be with you?"

"Well, see...when I was 10 I had an accident. I was riding my bike to school and this lady backed over me. My leg got caught between my bike and the pavement and well...I lost my leg. The lady that did it had a heart attack and died so it wasn't like she did it on purpose or anything, but now I have to wear this," Jeremy said knocking on his prosthetic with his knuckles.

"And?" Deane said smiling, "You thought I'd be so shallow that I wouldn't like you because you got hurt a long time and ago and now you're living with the result of it? You must think I'm pretty shallow if you think that would matter to me."

"No, I just...I'm sorry," he said frowning.

"Look, Jeremy...I already knew about your leg. I didn't know what happened exactly, but it's not exactly a big secret."

"It's not? But the only person I told was Aidan and he told his brother...they promised."

"It wasn't them. I heard one of the teachers talking about it one day and I guess some other kids heard it too. After that I kept kind of looking at you and checking you out and I finally figured out which leg."

"You've known this all along and you didn't say anything?"

"Why should I? It's your business. It didn't bother me at all. In fact it made me realize just how strong a person you are. So...if you can live with my bitchiness and my smart-ass attitude I can definitely live with this," she said grabbing his prosthetic and squeezing it."

"You're amazing," Jeremy said then leaning in and intending to kiss her on the cheek he was met instead by her lips.

The kiss was sweet and chaste, but no less stimulating to both, and when it was over they held hands and stared into each other's eyes. If ever there was a case of love at first sight, this was one.

In the movie theater they held hands and snuggled and occasionally kissed and though the movie was indeed a good one, neither remembered much of it when they exited the theater 90 minutes later. Wandering out into the mall they sat on a bench and Jeremy called Isaac to come pick them up.

"Tonight was amazing," Jeremy said smiling and brushing back a stray lock of hair from Deane's cute face.

"It was, wasn't it?" Deane said smiling and gazing into Jeremy's eyes.

"So, do you want to do it again?"

"Yeah, I do. Or maybe we could just hang next time," She suggested.

"Yeah, totally. Think your mom would let you come to my house? I'd really like my folks to meet you."

"They okay with you dating white trash?" Deane said sadly.

"Don't you say that. You're not trash. And as far as you being white, well...we're all the same color inside. It's what's inside that matters. My folks are good people and very open minded. They will love you as much as I do."

" love me...already?"

"What do you mean already? I've loved you since the first day I met you, but I just never thought I had a chance with you."

"What are you saying Jeremy Wilson?"

"Uh, I guess what I'm saying is...I know we've only dated this one time, but it's not like we don't know each other, and well...I was wondering'd consider being my girl."

Deane smiled and grabbed Jeremy and kissed him excitedly and wetly, "Yes..yes, yes, a hundred times yes."


Aidan's TV appearance was a big success. At the last minute Isaac agreed to play bass while Jeremy played keyboards and Aidan the guitar. Jaden sang backup as well, but Aidan was the obvious star and got the most attention.

After his appearance his YouTube views went up to over 10,000 and were growing daily. His mom had recorded the whole thing on their DVR and that was posted as well and earned his channel even more hits. Aidan was on cloud nine, but there was one thing that troubled him, how to convince his folks to let him make more public appearances.

Jaden and Jimmy were shocked to say the least when Jeremy and Deane announced they were a couple now, but they wished the two well and privately consoled each other at the loss of their gal friend. They were glad they'd had that last fun-filled evening, but neither boy assumed there would be a repeat of that or for that matter any paling around at all from now on.

Isaac congratulated his little bro on his new girlfriend and as expected Jeremy's folks were crazy about Deane. Having come from a poor family himself, Mr. Wilson sympathized with her situation and he and his wife went out of their way to make her feel welcome and comfortable in their home.

Life went on, life was good, but despite Aidan's new found success there was still a sadness and longing inside him that no one was aware of. While he had once been a pleasant and predictable young man, lately he had begun to lash out unexpectedly and behave in a way that perplexed not only his family, but his friends as well.

"Mr. Reynolds do you have your book report?" Ms. Green when she came to his desk.

"No ma'am," Aidan mumbled, "the dog ate it," he smirked.

"I see. What kind of dog?" she said straight-faced.

"What? Oh, uh...a pit bull."

"Mr. Reynolds, do you even have a dog?"

"No ma'am, I lied. I just didn't have time to do it."

"Aidan, you had three weeks to read the book and do the report. Now I know you're a famous TV star and YouTube personality, but I still expect you to take some time out for your school work. Since you seem to be so busy with your new career, it may be hard for you to find time to tell your parents that you got a incomplete on this assignment. I will however give you an opportunity to turn it in late for half credit if you can tear yourself away from your adoring fans long enough to write it."

"Gee thanks, that's not fair and you know it." Aidan said angrily.

"Mr. Reynolds you are skating dangerously close to being disrespectful. Are you done or is there something else you'd like to add."

"No ma'am, thank you ma'am," he said stiffly.

"I will need that report on my desk by Friday. Do you understand?"

"Yes ma'am, Friday."

Aidan fumed the rest of the period and didn't hear a thing the teacher was saying. There was a time when he'd enjoyed English Literature, and though he thought Ms. Green was a bit too preachy at times, they'd gotten along okay. Today he was convinced she was a real bitch and he was sure he hated her.

At lunch Aidan was still grousing about his experience in Ms. Green's class and Jaden picked up on it right away.

"Bro, what's with you lately? You used to love English Lit and you've always been a good student."

"Well, maybe I've changed. Maybe I don't need all that stuff now. Maybe I think I can make it with my music and skip all that crap."

Jaden looked as if he'd been hit in the face with a two by four, and most of the other kids watched them with their mouths open in shock.

"A, you know mom and dad aren't gonna let you screw up in school. They'll shut the music thing down in a  heartbeat if you don't keep your grades up and can the attitude."

"You're just like everyone else," Aidan spit out acidly, "everyone is jealous of my success and don't want me to make it big. Well, I don't need you guys," he said standing suddenly and grabbing his tray. "I think it's time to find a new table to sit at, somewhere I'm appreciated."

The look on Jaden's face mirrored that of the other kids at the table, but for Jaden it was a lot more personal. This was his brother spouting this crazy stuff, and worse of all directing it at him, the one person who supported him more than anyone else.

"You okay J?" Jimmy said touching Jaden's are gently.

"If I didn't know better I'd think he was on drugs, or one of those pod people. I feel like I don't know him anymore. He's fine one minute, then crazy the next. I'm telling you, I'm almost afraid to say anything to him anymore."

"Are you sure he's not doing drugs?" Deane asked frowning.

"Pretty sure, I mean...I guess it's possible, but I don't think he has that kind of money, plus, I think he's smarter than that. He's always been against that sort of thing."

"What if...what if he's sick? I mean maybe there's something wrong with know, his brain or nerves or something." Jeremy suggested.

"I don't know, but he's gonna be dead if mom and dad find out what he did at school today," Jaden sighed.

"Look, he's over there at the cheerleader table. God, he's really desperate," Jimmy laughed, "hanging with girls."

"Those are his adoring fans," Deane laughed, "I mean...I have to admit...I'm sort of a fan too."

"Hey now girl," Jeremy laughed, "You belong to me now."

"I'm not your property," Deane said slapping at her boyfriend playfully, "but it's sweet that you're jealous."

"I'm not really, I know you would never cheat on me," he said grinning, "especially with a gay boy."

"Hey, that's my brother you're talking about."

"Sorry bro, it's not a dis. I'm cool with A being gay."

"I think he's invented a new kind of sexual....angry-sexual," Jaden said sighing.

"I bet the ride home today is going to be fun," Jimmy joked, "I wonder if he'll give your mom attitude."

"If he does, you're invited to the funeral," Jaden joked.

"Well, maybe what he needs is a good spanking," Deane teased.

"He'd probably like that," Jaden laughed, "he's kind of a freak between the sheets."

"Well, I'll expect a full report tomorrow, but for now me and Dee are gonna go hang out in the common area," Jeremy said wiggling his eyebrows.

"No making out you guys," Jaden teased.

"Only if we can get away with it, right sweetie?"


The ride home was as confusing as lunch had been. Aidan seemed just fine, in fact cheerful, and told his mom right off the bat that he'd messed up but that he was going to make up for it by finishing the book report and apologizing to Ms. Green.

Jaden sat open-mouthed in the back seat with Jimmy watching the whole conversation as goosebumps ran up and down his body. It was like Aidan was two different people these days. Polite and happy around his folks and a crazy man at school. It worried Jaden, but he wasn't quite ready to bring the issue to his folks attention yet. He felt he owed Aidan that much, but his patience was wearing thin.

Jimmy elbowed Jaden and mouthed, "Pod people," and he couldn't help but laugh.

"What's so funny boys," Mrs. Reynolds asked.

"Inside joke," Jaden said, "how was your day mom," he added changing the subject.

"Fine, I spent most of it cleaning house and baking cookies for the school bake sale."

"I hope there were some broken ones or some leftovers," Jaden said, his mouth practically watering.

"I think we can spare a few for three  hungry boys."

When they got home Aidan ran straight up to their room but Jaden and Jimmy followed Mrs. Reynolds into the kitchen for their snack.

"Where did your brother go?"

"Dunno," Jaden said pouring two glasses of milk.

"Is something up with you two?" She asked suspiciously.

"No, nothing," Jaden lied.

"Well, you'd tell me if anything was wrong, right?"

"Sure mom, if I thought there was anything you needed to know, I'd tell you."

"That's a very diplomatic answer, have you considered a career in politics, or perhaps becoming a lawyer?" She chuckled.

"Actually I think I'd like to work with kids," Jaden said suddenly turning very serious, "I think I'd like to be a teacher."

Mrs. Reynolds was surprised, but her surprise soon passed, "Is this something you've given some thought to?"

"Yeah, actually...I've been thinking a lot about it lately. I mean I think I'd make a cool teacher. Mr. Reynolds," he chucked.

"Well, it's not one of the highest paying jobs, but it is very rewarding. If you're truly serious about it then I think we should discuss it some with your father."

"I mean it's not like I need to decide right now...right? But the more I think about it, the more the idea works for me."

"Well, your grades are certainly good enough, and you have the personality for it. Actually I think it's a wonderful idea, but as you's not a decision you have to make right away."

Aidan breezed in about then dressed in shorts and a tank top. He looked totally out of character and under-dressed for the weather and Jaden gave him a curious look.

"What? I'm working out after my snack. You guys should join me. You're getting soft."

Jaden gave Jimmy a WTF look and rolled his eyes, "I'm in if you are."

Jimmy shrugged, "Sounds like a lot of hard work to me."

"You're getting fat," Aidan said grabbing a Gatorade from the fridge, "both of you."

"Aidan, that's not very nice," Mrs. Reynolds said frowning, "besides Jaden is exactly the same size as you," she chuckled.

"I don't care if I have a little extra meat on my bones," Jimmy laughed, "J likes it, don't ya'," Jimmy laughed.

"TMI Jimmy," Aidan said making a face.

"Well, I'll let you boys hammer it out, I've got to go do some laundry."

As soon as she was out of the room Aidan looked at Jaden and Jimmy and smirked, "So did you tell mom what a bad boy I was today?"

"No, why...should I have?" Jaden said hotly.

"I wanted to give you plenty of time to rat me out, that way I'd know who is on my side and who's not."

"Bro, are you high? You sure don't sound like my little brother."

"I'm not your little brother. We're the same age...a few minutes don't count. I'm equal to that?" he all but screamed.

  "Oh I got it all right," Jaden said looking hurt, shocked, and a little angry, "You know I've been thinking about this for a while, and I think the time might be right. I'm gonna ask mom and dad about moving into the other bedroom. I don't think our room is big enough for the two of us anymore."

"Good, that's fine. I need more room anyway."

"Good, you'll have plenty of room from now on. Come on Jimmy let's go upstairs and take a look at my new room and see how much work is ahead of us."

"Us?" Jimmy laughed, "Guess I'm gonna get that exercise after all."

Once they were upstairs Jimmy finally voiced his opinion of what he'd just seen.

"I see what you mean about Aidan. How long has he been like this?"

"Well, it all started after John left, but it's gotten worse. As his fame increases his ego grows bigger. He's like those egotistical movie stars you read about."

"J, I'm worried about him. He used to be the sweetest person I knew, now...I'm afraid of him."

"I'm worried too, but I don't know what to do. I just...I need some space from him. My only problem is how to convince mom and dad my wanting to move isn't because Aidan is crazy," he chuckled.

"I don't know. Maybe you should tell them what's going on. Maybe it's like Jeremy said, maybe he's sick or something."

"I don't know. If he hates me this much now, how much would he hate me if I told on him?"

"He needs help. What if he does something really stupid and gets hurt?"

"I'll watch out for him. It's not like I'm abandoning him or anything."

"I'll help anyway I can, you know that, but if things get too bad...promise me you'll tell your folks."

"Okay, I promise, but only if things get too bad to handle."

The bedroom in question adjoined the old bedroom through the twins' bathroom and currently was used as a guest room, though few had used it. There was a full size bed, a night stand, and a mirrored dresser, but not much else. 

Jaden decided he'd like to have a bigger bed and though he wasn't crazy about the other furniture he could live with it. He'd need a desk, since he and Aidan had shared one in their bedroom, but he had his own bookcases already. Aidan was more into his computer these days than the gaming system so Jaden was pretty sure he would let him move that to his room.

Sitting down on the bed Jaden sighed, "I never thought this day would come. I just thought we'd always be together," he said sadly.

Jimmy sat down beside him and put his arm around him, "Jaden, you don't have to do this. Maybe you should hold off a while and just see how things go."

"No...I think it's time. Besides, think how much fun it will be when you sleep over, rolling around in this big ole' bed," he said pulling Jimmy down and kissing him.

"Well...that would be nice, and it's not like he's gonna be that far away..."

"Exactly, we should have done this a long time ago. Now to convince my folks."

At dinner that night Aidan seemed back to his old self and Jaden decided to strike while the iron was  hot, as they say.

", I want to talk to you about something," Jaden began.

Aidan gave Jaden the stink eye, but didn't say anything. Once Jaden started speaking though he relaxed.

"You know how you originally planned on me and A having our own rooms and sharing the bathroom? Well, we're getting older now and we both need more space, so we were thinking...maybe this would be a good time to split up and have our own room."

Mr. Reynolds looked at his wife questioningly but she just shrugged indicating that this was news to her as well.

"Well, if that's what you boys want..." Mrs. Reynolds said, "It's fine with me."

"I think it might be good for you boys to have some space of your own," Mr. Reynolds said embracing the idea quickly, "When I was your age I had to share my room with at least one brother until I was almost 16. I remember how wonderful it felt having my own room at first, but that night laying there all alone in my bed I realized I missed my loud smelly older brother."

"Well, it's not like I'm moving away. We'll still be living in the same house and only a few feet apart."

"True, I'm all for it. And if it doesn't work out you can always move back, right?"

"Yeah, but we'll need to buy another desk and chair and a few things..."

"I think we can manage that," Mr. Reynolds chuckled.

"So, I can do it?"

"Sure, how about tomorrow evening we go find a desk and chair and assemble them and then on Saturday we'll make the move?"

"You'll need some new bedding and curtains..." Mrs. Reynolds said perking up. This was right up her alley and she loved decorating.

Jaden was all smiles as he finished his dinner, but he couldn't read Aidan's face. He hadn't said much during the discussion, but he certainly hadn't opposed the move. His attitude seemed to be more neutral than anything, or perhaps as if it was nothing of importance to him, and that annoyed Jaden a great deal. This was serious stuff, them splitting up, and Aidan didn't seem to care one way or the other.

After dinner it was the boys turn to do dishes and Jaden dreaded having to spend time so close to his crazy brother, but surprisingly he seemed his sweet normal self at the beginning.

"I'll miss you J, but I understand why you need your space," Aidan said once his parents were out of the room.

"Uh, okay. Thanks. I was uh.. was wondering, do you care if I take the gaming system. I know you don't play it much, but you can always come to my room if you want to."

"Sure, that's fine. I don't need it. I might rearrange things once you've moved out.  Are you taking your bed or using the one in there?"

"I like the one that's in there but we can take my old bed to the attic or something if you need the room."

Aidan nodded, but he didn't speak for a long time and when he did it was as if nothing they had just said meant anything.

"I guess you'll be wanting the gaming system," he smirked.

"Uh, you just said that was fine," Jaden stuttered.

"Oh, yeah...sure..fine, but it belongs to both of us, not just you."

"Forget it A, keep the damn thing," Jaden said finally having had enough of his brother's craziness.

"Why are you getting mad," Aidan said sounding surprised and hurt, "I told you you could have it."

Jaden looked at Aidan like he was crazy and then threw down the dish towel he'd been using and stomped off to their room. Aidan shrugged and finished the dishes and then went in to visit with his parents. He just didn't understand Jaden these days, he was so moody.

In their room Jaden stripped off his clothes and grabbed clean underwear and walked into the bathroom. He was so upset he was shaking as he dropped his underwear and stepped into the shower. The warm spray felt good and soon he started to relax a little. 

He wanted so badly to understand what was going on with Aidan, but it was beyond his limited experience. They were twins after all and as such had always been close. So close that they scarcely knew where one began and the other ended, but Aidan was like some stranger with moods that went up and down like an elevator. It was too much for Jaden to comprehend and there was no one to talk to about it, not without getting his parents involved and that was unthinkable at the moment.

He was so caught up in his thoughts that he didn't hear the door open and when Aidan spoke he jumped as if he'd been shot.

"Hey, can I get in?"

"What, I'm almost done. I'll be out in a minute."

"Is that a no?"

"I guess it is," Jaden said getting agitated again.

"Fine, I'll be in my room."

Jaden wished he'd already moved and he didn't have to face his crazy brother once he was out of the shower, but that was not the case. Once he was dried off he slipped on his underwear and brushed his teeth as he steeled himself to face Aidan.

As he walked into the room he noticed a pile of clothes on his bed and Aidan was digging more out of their closet as he watched.

"What are you doing?"

"Getting your crap out of my closet," Aidan said tossing another pile of clothes on the bed.

"Whoa, hold up. I haven't moved yet. I'm still here till I leave my stuff alone."

"You can put it in the closet in there," Aidan said going back for another load.

"No, stop," Jaden stepping in front of his brother and looking defiant.

"Get out of my way or I'll move you," Aidan said through gritted teeth.

Jaden's eyebrows went up and his lip quivered as he spoke, "You better think twice about that. First of all, I'll kick your butt if you try, and second, mom and dad will want to know why, and I might have to tell them about how crazy you been acting."

Aidan seemed to consider this for a minute then gave his brother a scathing look and retreated to his side of the room and grabbed his clean underwear and stomped  off to the bathroom. When he was gone Jaden began to replace his clothes in the closet and tried to calm down.

His adrenaline rush was over and in it's place he was left with feelings of sadness and inadequacy. What had happened to the sweet loving brother that he'd shared so much with? He felt as if he's lost his best friend, and what was worse, he had no idea what to do about it. 

He wanted so badly to just hug his brother and tell him everything would be okay, but he knew it wouldn't be okay, and it would probably only make things worse between them. Maybe once  he got moved into his own room Aidan would discover he missed him and try to mend things between them, Jaden mused, but deep inside he knew that was unlikely. He was filled with sadness and despair as he crawled into bed anxiously awaiting the return of his crazy brother.

When Aidan finished in the bathroom he walked into the bedroom and gave Jaden a nervous smile, "Night bro."

"Night," Jaden said once again shocked by his brother's teeter totter personality.

When the light was out Jaden buried his head in his pillow and thought about how things used to be. Most nights they would have wound up in the same bed, talking about their lives and cuddling, and often engaging in sex, but Jaden couldn't remember the last time they'd done any of that. It was sad to think that all that had ended, and even sadder to know he had no idea why, or how to fix things. It was as if all this was some bad dream, only he knew he wouldn't wake up to find that was the case.


"What's up with Jaden and Aidan?" Deane asked as she cuddled with Jeremy on his couch that Saturday afternoon. 

"Still messed up, Jaden moved into his own room and Aidan has been like Jeckle and Hyde ever since. One time he's sorry J's gone and the next he's trying to accuse him of taking something of his or messing with his room."

"I'm worried about Aidan....really worried. I think he needs to go to a shrink or something. I know Jaden doesn't want to tell his folks what's going on, but surely they must've noticed some of Aidan's craziness."

"You'd think. He's even quit hanging with Isaac and me and that was a big shock. Now he makes his videos on his own. I haven't seen him since just after the TV thing, course I been kinda busy," he said grinning.

"Well, I didn't want to take you away from your friends. I told you, I don't have to have be with you every minute of every day," she teased, " Just most of them."

"Well, the same thing goes for you. You didn't have to quit hanging with Jimmy and Jaden."

"Yeah, I really did," she said looking anxious, "there's something I need to tell you...about Jimmy and Jaden and me," she said looking near tears.

"No, there isn't," Jeremy said taking her hand, "whatever it was is your business. I don't need to know. That was then, this is now...right?"

"But, it might be important. You know...sort of how it was important for you to tell me about your leg."

"Look, if it's about that night, that night at Jimmy's...I know all I need to. Whatever happened is in the past. I trust you and I know you won't do anything to hurt me. Heck, I'm not innocent either. I've done things, but that has nothing to do with how I feel about you."

"Are you sure?"

"Yeah, real sure," Jeremy said leaning in and kissing Deane on the cheek, then nuzzling her ear he whispered, "My folks won't be home for a couple hours and Isaac is at band practice..."

"What did you have in mind?"

"Oh, nothing...I mean it's up to you whatever we do..." he said looking nervous.

"There is something I want to tell you, something important. You may not believe me, but it's true..."

"I told you I trust you. If you tell me something I'll believe it."

"Okay,'s just that...well, I'm still a virgin and I plan on staying that way for a while. I know it's hard to believe, but I didn't let Jaden or know, go all the way."

"I don't find it hard to believe at all. I know that's an important thing for a girl. I respect that, and I would never try to pressure you into doing anything you don't want to."

"Let me finish," she said smiling, "I want to save that for someone I really care about and...well, I think that may be you, but...I want to be sure. So if you don't mind waiting."

"Dee, I'm in no hurry. I just want to be with you and share your life."

"But...there are other things we can do," Dee said grinning, "and I think you'll like those almost as much as going all the way."

"Oh? Well, uh...I'm down for anything you want to do," Jeremy said returning her grin and looking embarrassed.

"Come on, let's go to your bedroom. I want to show you something I've learned from my two buddies."

Jeremy was nervous to say the least. He's never had a girl in his bedroom and certainly not anyone that he had such deep feelings for. Sure he's messed with Aidan and it had been great, but his feeling for Aidan were more of friendship, and his venture into boy sex had been more out of curiosity than anything else. He'd learned some things from Aidan that he knew would spill over into his relationship with a girl and now it seemed that Dee had learned from Aidan's brother and boyfriend. It was ironic and almost funny, but Jeremy was too excited to give it more than a fleeting thought.

Jeremy's room was the typical teenage boy's room, but these days he kept it cleaner and picked up at all times, for just such a contingency as this. This was Dee's first visit to his most private of places and he was so nervous he felt as if he might pass out.

"Your room is nice," Dee said looking around, "I'm surprised there are no girly posters though," she teased.

", well...I got rid of them when we started dating."

"You didn't have to do that, but I'm flattered that you did. I don't want to own you Jeremy. You can still look at other girls and have your friends."

"I don't need to look at other girls, I have the prettiest one on earth right here," he said taking her hands and gazing into her eyes. She bit her lip and blushed. Tears filled her eyes and at first Jeremy thought he had done something wrong.

"What's wrong, did I say something wrong?"

"No, you silly boy. You said just the right thing. I don't need to look at any other boys either. I'm pretty sure I've found the boy I love, but...I just want to make sure, for both our sakes."

"I told you, I can wait as long as I need to. We don't have to do anything. I'm happy just to hold you and kiss your sweet lips."

"That's sweet, but I want to make you really happy so..." she said snaking her hand down to his crotch and feeling the lump there.

The lump grew bigger immediately and Jeremy shivered and let out a little sigh.

"I want to see you...all of you," she said looking excited.

"Do I get to see you too?"

"Oh yeah, but I want us to undress each other. Is that okay?"

"Very okay," Jeremy said trembling.

"Nice jeans," Dee said grinning, "Oh, nice undies too," she said as she popped open his top button. "But first the shirt," she said grabbing the hem of his pullover and working it upwards. 

Jeremy raised his arms to allow her to remove his shirt and then he removed hers. "Cute bra," he said drinking in her beauty as it was revealed to him.

"It actually hooks in the front," she said as she rubbed his almost hairless chest.

"Uh, okay," Jeremy said fumbling with the catch. His hands were shaking, but somehow he managed to get it open and suddenly Dee's creamy white breasts came into view. Jeremy sucked in a breath and gently and lovingly removed her bra and carefully folded it and tossed it on his bed.

Her breasts were small, but perfect, and her nipples were erect and enticing. Jeremy wanted so badly to touch them, but hesitated. Dee, sensing his nervousness,  took his hand in her's and brought it to her breast.

"It's okay to touch," she said softly, "cause I sure intend to."

Jeremy smiled, and emboldened by her easy-going attitude, he gave her cute breasts his full attention.

"Okay, now the pants," Dee said after a few minutes. Then finishing what she had started, she unzipped and pushed down Jeremy's jeans, "Do you need to sit down to get them off?" she asked remembering his leg.

"Naw, I can do it," he said stepping out of his pants. They had both removed their shoes earlier before cuddling on the couch.

"Nice," Dee said reaching between them to rub Jeremy's bulge through his boxers, "Well...are you going to help me out of my jeans or not?"

"Oh, yeah...sorry," Jeremy said blushing. Then gently he unbuttoned her jeans and pushed them down to reveal a pair of lacy pink panties. Sucking in a breath again, he steeled himself for the task at hand, and finally got her jeans down to her feet and  helped her step out of them.

"Well, here we are," Dee said moving up to Jeremy and placing her small hands on his chest. Tilting her  head up she waited for him to kiss her, and eventually he took the hint.

The kiss was wet and exciting, but tender as well, and both felt their excitement growing, Jeremy's more obvious than Deane's thanks to the tent in his boxers. Reaching down once more Dee wrapped her hand around the long tube snaking down Jeremy's leg and squeezed it gently.

"Can I free this thing?" she whispered as she nibbled at his lips.

"Uh huh," he said shivering. Even having full blown sex with that girl when he was twelve was no match for what was happening here and now, and they were only just beginning.

Grasping the waistband of Jeremy's boxers, Dee slowly and teasingly lowered them, first revealing his kinky pubes, and then the base of his cock. Pulling out the waistband to allow Jeremy's cock to clear the boxers, she lowered them quickly then stooped and worked them off his feet. As she rose she was at eye level with Jeremy's hard throbbing cock and she reached up and grabbed it and placed a gentle kiss on the single drooling eye.

" taste good baby," she said raising up to kiss Jeremy on the lips, pressing herself against his hardness.

"Your turn," Jeremy said grasping her silky panties at the waist and lowering them.

"You're smooth," Jeremy said with shock.

"I shaved it, do you like it?"

"Yeah, it's pretty," he said running his hand across her pubis.

"You can feel me...down there," she said spreading her legs a little to allow him better access, "yeah, like that...maybe we should lay down or something..."

"Yeah, you're right," he said taking her hand and leading her to the bed.

Helping her into bed he climbed in beside her and rolled onto his side to face her. Then leaning he kissed her as he ran his right hand up and down here body before finally letting it linger between her legs. Even though he knew all about girl parts and had actually had sex with a girl when he was 12, he was still a little overwhelmed.

Sensing his nervousness, Dee reached down and guided his hand to her puffy pink lips and between them. He took over then, exploring her hole and eventually finding her clit and eliciting a soft moan from her.


"Dee, can I...taste you down there?" Jeremy asked after a few minutes. He had sucked dick and supposed this couldn't be that much different.

"Yesss...I like that, use your tongue," she said guiding him between her legs.

He didn't know what to expect, but he liked what he found. She smelled like strawberries down there and tasted sweet as he lapped at her most private place. She moaned lowly and grabbed his head and ran her fingers through his nappy hair.

"Oh...yesss...ummm..oh, that. Rub my tits while you do that, pinch my nipples....umm...yess..yess...yess...oh...God...I'm" Then shaking as if she had been electrocuted her orgasm raced through her body as she gasped for air and her heart beat nearly out of her chest.

"Oh, baby...that was amazing. Let me rest a minute and I am going to make you feel so good. Come up here and kiss me," she said holding our her arms.

Jeremy swarmed into her arms, pressing his hard wet cock against her thigh as they kissed, and he felt in danger of coming just from the contact. Eventually Dee broke the kiss and instructed Jeremy to lay down flat on his back and relax.

He was thankful Dee was taking charger since he had no idea what he was doing, but he was a little concerned about her being so experienced. Had she learned all this with Jimmy and Jaden, or were there others before them? It really didn't matter in the scheme of things, since the past was the past and no concern of his, but he was curious none-the-less.

Starting at his face Dee kissed her way down his body, lingering at his hard nipples then licking down his washboard stomach and tonguing out his bellybutton. He had never felt anything so amazing in all his life, not even the things he and Aidan had done, though they were close. This was different, this was with a girl, and not just fun, it was serious business.

When Deane reached his wiry pubes she ran her fingers through them and giggled, "I like these, they're soft, but kinky...just like me."

Jeremy certainly couldn't disagree with that, the girl was kinky...but soft and all girl. 

Grabbing Jeremy's cock she held it in her hand and marveled at it's perfection. As a girl she had always been fascinated by boys and the treasure that sprouted between their legs. She had seen her first cock at age 6 and after that first one she was hooked for life. Not that she was sex crazy, or boy crazy, she was cock crazy. She liked everything about them, and only her conviction to save her virginity for the right boy, kept her from giving it to the first hard prick she encountered. But there were other ways to please a boy, and over the years she had learned pretty much all of them. She was as skilled at handing a cock as she was pleasuring herself and she enjoyed it almost as much.

Licking the pre-cum off Jeremy's cockhead she moaned her approval, "You taste so good."

"Be careful, I'm really close..." Jeremy panted.

"It's okay if you want to come, and you don't have to warn me, I want to drink you down when you come."

Jeremy shivered at the thought of that. Sure Aidan had swallowed his cum, but this was a girl, a real live girl and a girl he was pretty sure he loved. Not only had she accepted his disability without batting an eye, she had accepted the rest of him and now...this.

"Oh...okay...ummm...that feels really I come," he said as he grabbed the covers and held on tight. The orgasm started in his groin but soon spread to all parts of his teenage body. It was a spectacular orgasm, the kind that went on and on, like waves rushing in to the shore, and it left him weak and sated and panting like a dog on a hot summer day.

"That was really good..." he gasped, "Thank you," he said pulling her in for a kiss. He could taste his own flavor on her lips and it was a real bonding experience. He'd tasted his own cum before but somehow it tasted better today and there certainly was plenty of it. He hadn't cum in three days, but not because he thought he might get lucky today, but rather because he hadn't had the desire to.

Snuggling into Jeremy, Dee kissed him on the neck and ears and rubbed his chest, paying special attention to his erect nipples.

"Hmm...this is nice," Dee said contentedly, "When you rest we'll do it again," she said grinning.

"Oh, okay," Jeremy said smiling, "If you say so."

"I do, it may be a while before we get a chance again, so we need to make it count."

"'re so different when you're naked," he teased, "but I like it. Can I be honest? I didn't know what to do. I'm so glad you did."

" you think I'm a slut?" she asked looking concerned.

"No, way. I think you're the sweetest, sexiest girl I know and there's nothing wrong with and sharing your body with someone you care about. At least that's how I feel. I really, really like you..maybe love you, and this is so much better than I ever dreamed it would be. I'm glad you know what you're doing, it makes it easier on me," he chucked, "Like you said, maybe the girls should do the asking and maybe be in charge."

"That's sweet, no wonder I like you so much," she said, then rolled on top of him, pressing herself against his cock, which had begun to grow again, and kissing him deeply.

"I can't believe this is happening," Jeremy panted as they broke for air, "It's like a dream come true."

"Sometimes I wish I wasn't a virgin, that I'd already had my cherry popped, but I've waited this long..."

"No, that's fine. It makes you special, and who knows? Maybe I'll be that special boy you're looking for."

"Maybe," she said wistfully, "but for now, I am going to keep you happy in other ways."


"Okay, where is it?" Aidan said walking in unannounced on Jaden and Jimmy who were naked and in bed making out.

"Uh, dude, kind of busy..." Jaden groused.

"One of my flash drives is missing, what did you do with it?"

"What? Dude...I haven't been in your room all week. I don't know where it is. Maybe it rolled under the desk or something."

"No, I looked everywhere. Someone took it and I know it wasn't mom or dad. Come on, give it back."

"Bro, get out of my room and leave us alone. I don't have your fucking flash drive and if you don't get out now, I am going to throw you out."

"You'll regret this," Aidan snarled, "I'll get you for this." Then slamming the door behind him he exited like a bad dream.

"What the fuck was that all about?" Jimmy asked. He didn't curse often, but Aidan was bringing out the worst in both of them these days.

"He's crazy. I swear...he's like a ticking time bomb. One minute he's fine, the next he's screaming and accusing me of things, and I'm getting pretty sick of it."

"Guess he killed the mood huh?" Jimmy said frowning.

"Naw, not for me. Hold on," Jaden hopped up and Jimmy admired his cute butt as he watched him lock the door to the bathroom and the one to the hall, "Now, we won't be interrupted," he said hopping back into bed."

" man," Jimmy teased, "take me you big stud."

"Mmmm...I love it when you play hard to get."


Next day at school Jaden had just sat down at the lunch table when he heard a familiar voice giggling behind him. Swiveling around he saw Deane and Jeremy headed his way. He greeted them warmly as they slid into their seats and bumped fists with Jeremy and took Dee's small hand a held it a moment.

"You guys look so cute together," Jaden said grinning, "how's things working out?"

"Wonderful," Jeremy said giving Dee a dreamy look.

"Yeah, and the great thing is...even our folks approve of us dating. My mom loves Jeremy like a son and his folks threat me like I'm a princess," Dee chuckled.

"That's cause you are a princess," Jeremy said smiling.

"Oh, god...please. I'm getting nauseous," Jaden said pretending to gag.

"Well, you should know how we feel, you have Jimmy," Dee said looking serious, "by the way, where is lover boy?"

"I...don't know, he should have been here by now," Jaden said looking around.

"Let's hope Aidan hasn't killed him and stuffed in a locker," Jeremy joked.

"Don't say that," Jaden said frowning, and then relating what had occurred last time Jimmy was over.

"Dude, you need to tell your folks what's going on. You know I saw a movie like this the other night. It had that kid from Home Alone, it was called the The Good Son, or something like that. See this one kid was like a total psycho..."

"I've seen it, the good kid is hot. I remember him from some other  movie."

"He was in Lord of the Rings after  he grew up," Deane added.

"But you're missing the point, Aidan is acting a lot like that kid, the bad one."

"Yeah, and as I recall no one believed the good kid when he tried to tell them what was happening. The bad kid blamed everything on him and even tried to kill his own mom."

"He killed his kid brother and she figured it out, that's why...but forget all that. If you don't want to wind up being hurled off a cliff, you better tell your folks what's going on," Jeremy said seriously.

"There are no cliffs here...but I get it. I just hate to be the one to rat him out."

"It's for his own good. Before he hurts himself or someone else."

"I don't know, maybe he just needs some time."

"You're hopeless," Jeremy said shaking his head.

"I'm gonna go look for Jimmy," Jaden said looking worried, "hold my place, I'll be right back."

Jaden backtracked to Jimmy's last class, but there was no sign of him. Next he began checking the bathrooms. He was down to the last one when he finally found him leaning over the sink and looking sick.

"What's wrong?" Jaden asked looking alarmed.

"Just not feeling too good." His face was white and his eyes looked vacant and it scared Jaden.

"Come on, I'm taking you to the nurse's office."

"Huh, okay...but take it slow...I feel like I might puke."

The nurse took one look at Jimmy and quickly grabbed a thermometer, "You're hot... better call your mom and have her pick you up. The flu is rampant this year. Jaden are you feeling okay?"

"Yeah, do you really think it's the flu? Will he be okay?"

"Yes, but he may be contagious so it's best you don't get too close."

Jaden wondered if it wasn't a little too late for that since they'd been exchanging quiet a bit of bodily fluid the weekend before, but so far he felt just fine. Instead of going back to finish his lunch Jaden stayed with Jimmy until his mom came and then walked him to her car.

"I'm taking you straight to the ER," Mrs. Durro said as she buckled Jimmy in, "thank you Jaden for looking out for him, you're sweet."

"'re welcome. I'll call ya' when I get out of school and see how things went. Get well, okay?" Jaden said closing the door and patting Jimmy gently, "I love you."

"I love you too," Jimmy said lowly.

As they drove away Jaden just realized what he had done, he had just expressed his love for Jimmy in front of his mother. He worried about that a little, but he guessed it was really no secret how they felt about each other and he was pretty sure Mrs. Durro knew they were having sex. He knew for a fact that his folks knew about the sex since they'd given him the "talk", and embarrassing as that was, using the L word seemed even more embarrassing. Oh, he guessed his folks knew that he and Jimmy had deep feeling for one another, but this was taking things to a whole new level, and he needed some time to think about it.

"Where were you?" Jeremy asked when they hooked up later in the hall, "I had to throw your lunch out when you didn't come back. I was worried."

"It was Jimmy, he's sick and I had to stay with him till his mom picked him up."

"Is he okay? What wasn't...Aidan was it?"

"No, the nurse said it might be the flu. He looked awful though. I'm really worried."

"Ouch, if he has it, we might all get it...especially you...since you're so close and all."

"Yeah, far I feel fine."

"Speaking of Aidan I heard he got detention for mouthing off to Mr. Thomas in math class. Guess now your folks will know something is going on."

"Damn, I knew this was going to happen. Somehow he'll blame me though, or someone else."

"Well, your folks are smarter than that. They'll know it was on him this time."

"What a day, what else can happen?" Jaden sighed, and soon he would find out what else.

His first class after lunch seemed to pass painfully slow and then just before the period ended there was an announcement on the intercom.

"Attention all students, please remain in class...repeat..remain in the classroom you are now in. If you are in the bathroom or hallway go immediately to the nearest classroom and wait for further instructions. Attention all teachers and faculty...code blue is in effect. Please remain with your students and await further instructions. Again all students and faculty are to remain in your classrooms and no one is to be in the hallways or bathrooms till further notice. Again this is a code blue."

Jaden looked at his friend Chris who sat across from him and frowned, "Your mom is a teacher, what does that mean?"

Chris shrugged, "I think it means someone is sick or injured and they want to keep everyone in one place so they won't interfere with the MT's or something."

"Wow, must be bad if they gotta shut down the whole school for it." Jaden said nervously. He had a bad feeling about this, in fact his "twin" senses were going off like crazy and he was so afraid this had something to do with Aidan.

He knew Aidan was in Science class that hour in room 12 at the far end of the building, but couldn't remember if any of their other friends shared that class with him or not. His stomach was all tied up in knots and he found himself biting his fingernails and awaiting an end to whatever was going on.

There were no sirens, which was a good sign. If it had been a real emergency they figured there would have been sirens, police, fire, ambulance...but so far it was quiet. Then just as Jaden was starting to relax the door opened and in walked the Assistant Principal Ms. Warner and after speaking briefly with the teacher, Mr. Clark, she asked Jaden to come with her.

As soon as they were in the hallway Jaden swallowed down the lump that had threatened to choke him, and his voice came out as a squeak, "It's Aidan, isn't it. What happened, is he okay?"

"I'm sorry Jaden, I don't know exactly what happened, but is your brother. Your parents have been notified and they're on the way. They requested that you be allowed to accompany them to the hospital."

"Hospital? Did Aidan get hurt..what happened?"

"I think it's best if you hear it from Principal Parker. He's waiting for us in his office."

"Where's Aidan? I want to see my brother."

"He's being attended to by the MTs right now and they're just waiting for your parents before they transport him."

Jaden knew it was pointless to keep asking questions about what happened since Ms. Warner had already told him he'd have to wait and talk to the Principal, so he just kept quiet and brooded, imagining the worst case scenario, and becoming more and more distraught with each step.

It seemed like forever until they reached the Principal's office and his heart was beating so fast by then that he feared it would explode out of his chest at any moment. Principal Parker was new this year and Jaden didn't know much about him, but he seemed nice enough and had been a stanch supporter of the anti-bullying campaign as well as the GSA.

"Jaden, come in please. Have a seat, I'm sorry to we had to meet under such harsh circumstances, but I wanted you to hear this from me and not second hand."

" my brother going to be okay?" Jaden asked, cutting right to the meat of the matter.

"I'm sure he will. First of all let me tell you exactly what happened and perhaps you can add some insight into why it might have happened," the man said rubbing as his temples as if his head hurt.

"What do  you mean?"

"Surely, being as close as you two must've noticed some changes in your brother. His teachers and fellow students certainly have. I haven't been around as long as some of the others, but even I have seen some disturbing changes in your brother."

"Well...yeah, I guess I just thought it was because of...well, his best friend moved away last year and then he started posting these videos and it kind of went to his head..."

"I see. I seem to remember he was on a local Television show as well. Well, sometimes a little fame can go to person's head, but I fear there may be more."

"What exactly happened?" Jaden asked again.

"Well, it seems that Aidan got into a rather heated argument with one of his classmates and there was some pushing and shoving. When Mr. Graham tried to intervene and your brother went a bit berserk and began trashing the classroom. It took two teachers to restrain him and then he collapsed and we immediately called 911. We also called your parents and they...."

His last words were cut off as Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds came bursting in unannounced demanding to see their son. Jaden jumped up and into his mother's arms and the tears finally came. He was too distraught to be embarrassed that he was crying to his momma, but no one seemed to think anything unusual about it considering the circumstances.

"Follow me, Mr. Parker said standing, "he's in the nurse's office with the MTs."

When they arrived at the nurse's office Jaden steeled himself for the worst, and rubbing the tears from his eyes, he followed the three adults inside. Laying on the green vinyl examination table was Aidan and for one horrible moment Jaden thought he looked dead. An oxygen mask covered his face and he was hooked up to an IV and had a blood pressure cuff on his right arm.

"Are you the parents?" one of the MTs asked.

"Yes, what's wrong with him?" Mr. Reynolds said taking Aidan's left hand in his and holding it gently as he tried to hold back the tears.

"We're not exactly sure, but we need to transport him as soon as possible. We'll be taking him to St. Marks. One of you can ride with him."

"I'll go," Mrs. Reynolds said, looking stronger than she felt. She was like a lioness when her cubs were in trouble, and her husband knew it and accepted her decision easily. 

"Come on Jaden, we'll meet them there," he said slipping an arm around his other son.

In the car Jaden was so quiet Mr. Reynolds feared he might be in shock.

"Are you okay son, did you see what happened? The Principal said there was some kind of fight and that Aidan went crazy and just collapsed."

"That's what they told me,," Jaden said looking forlorn, "there's something I should have told you. This isn't the first time A has gone sort of crazy."

"What do you mean son?"

So Jaden suddenly found himself recounting all the crazy things Aidan had done and said over the last few months and the real reason he had decided to move into his own room. When he finished he looked at his father with tears in his eyes and waited for the hail storm that never came.

"It's not your fault son, your mother and I noticed some things too. We just thought it was because of Jimmy and his newly found fame on the internet. We had no idea things were that bad and if anyone is to blame it's us, not you. We're his parents, we should have seen the signs and took some action, so don't blame yourself. I'm sorry you had to go through all that abuse though, and I take responsibility for that as well."

"I just didn't want to rat him out, that's all," Jaden said sadly, "I just wanted things to be like they used to be and I know, maybe if I gave him time...he'd get over whatever it was that was bothering him."

"I think there's more here and than meets the eye son. You don't think he's using drugs do you?"

"I'm pretty sure he's not dad. I think I would have noticed that and I would have come to you if I thought that was the case. I know that's serious stuff and something only an adult can handle."

"You're a smart kid, and a good brother. You have nothing to be sorry for about the way you handled things. Now we just need to move forward and find out what's going on and figure out what to do about it."

"You don't think he could...die do you?"

"Naw, if he'd been that serious the MTs wouldn't have waited for us, they'd have transported him right away."

"Yeah, yeah...I see that." Still Jaden felt funny inside and his twin connection was saying something was very wrong with his brother.

The ride to the hospital took only fifteen minutes and they arrived just as the ambulance did. While the ambulance unloaded Aidan at the emergency room entrance, father and son checked in at the desk.  After Mr. Reynolds gave them his insurance information and signed some papers they sat down to wait for word on what was happening.

"When can we see him?" Jaden asked after a while.

"I'm sure your mother will come tell us when she knows something and then we can see him. Right now they are probably doing tests to determine what the problem is."

"I wish Jimmy was here, but he had to go home early. He's got the flu or something."

"You boys are getting a lot closer lately, aren't you?" Mr. Reynolds said smiling. His look was soft and not at all judgmental, in fact in a way he thought it was sort of romantic.

Jaden just shrugged, he's already used the L word today once in front of Jimmy's mom but he wasn't quite ready to share any more of his feelings about Jimmy. Still he really did wish Jimmy was there and he couldn't help but worry about him almost as much  as he was worrying about his brother. Little did he know that Jimmy was indeed there, two floors above them in the pediatric section, and wishing Jaden was there with him.

After an hour or so Mr. Reynolds went to the desk and made some inquiries and after an animated discussion he came back to speak to Jaden.

"Your brother is having an MRI in the basement right now. As soon as they're done with that he's going to be moved to a room on the third floor. When they get him moved we can see him."

"Dad, what's wrong? Did they say?" Jaden asked nervously. It wasn't like his father to keep things from him, but it sure seemed like he was this time.

Mr. Reynolds sat down beside his son and slipped an arm around his eldest son, "The doctors think it might be a brain tumor," he said, looking stricken now that he had to voice what he'd only just learned.

"A...a brain tumor, you mean like cancer?" Jaden asked shakily.

"Not necessarily, some tumors are benign and non-invasive and can be removed or treated rather easily."

"But we won't know till they do all the tests, right?"

"Yes, I'm afraid so."

"So this tumor, that's what caused Aidan to change, to freak out and stuff?"

"Yes, tumors of this kind can cause loss of memory and personality changes. Have you noticed any other signs besides his mood swings?"

"Yeah, a couple times we talk about something and then it would be like he didn't remember them at all. I just thought it was because he was too busy thinking about what crazy thing to do next."

Mr. Reynolds sighed, "I need to call work. I'm going to sit over there so I won't disturb you, okay?"

Jaden nodded, but he was barely listening. His whole world was falling apart and he didn't know what to do about it. What if Aidan died? It didn't matter that his dad had said it wasn't his fault for not reporting Aidan's bizzare behavior, he would always blame himself if anything bad happened to Aidan.

Eventually Jaden managed to put his fear and self-blaming aside and decided to check on Jimmy. Pulling out his cell phone he opened his contacts and pressed the button for his boyfriend. It took a few minutes for him to answer, only it wasn't Jimmy who answered, but rather his mother.

"Hello, this is Jaden, is Jimmy okay?"

"Oh Jaden, I heard about Aidan honey. I'm so sorry, but I'm afraid Jimmy is in the hospital too."

"What, why? Was it the flu or something worse?"

"It's the flu sweetie, but Jimmy has always had a hard time with this sort of thing. And what with all the flu related deaths this year among children, they decided to put him in the hospital for a few days, just till the worst of it is over."

"That's awful. He's gonna be all right...isn't he?"

"Oh, I'm sure he will. They gave him some medicine to help him and he's resting now. Maybe later you can come visit him...when you get Aidan settled."

"Looks like Aidan will be staying too. Hey, maybe they'll be on the same floor."

"I'm sure they will be, that's the pediatric floor," she said gently, "Have you heard from the doctor yet...about Aidan?"

"Nope, dad talked to the nurse and they were still doin' tests and then they were gonna' move him upstairs and then we can see him."

"Well, just have faith sweetie, this is one of the best pediatric hospitals in the state."

"I know, but I'm still worried. I...can feel him...inside you know...and I don't like how it feels."

"You boys are really close aren't you? I've heard that twins have a very special connection, but right now he's probably going through some things that might be scary to you. Just trust in God and the doctors and try not to worry so much, okay?"

"I will, thanks. Uh, can you tell Jimmy I called when he wakes up and ummm...give him a kiss for me," Jaden said sniffing back a few tears.

"Oh sweetie, I will...take care, I'll see you soon, okay?" Mrs. Durro said as tears filled her eyes.

Mr. Reynolds finished his call and returned to sit by Jaden. He'd called his boss and asked for a few days off and called Mrs. Reynold's boss as well. He didn't want either of them to have to worry about anything but their two sons for the time being.

"Jimmy is here too," Jaden said softly, "he has the flu and he's pretty sick."

"Oh, that's too bad. What about you, how are you feeling? I know you and Jimmy are pretty close, any chance you might have any of the symptoms of flu?"

"No, I feel fine...well, sad and worried, but not sick. I guess I'm stronger than Jimmy in some ways."

Mr. Reynolds nodded and just about then Aidan was wheeled out and on a gurney and Mrs. Reynolds motioned them over.

"We're headed up to his room now. It's room 307. You can come on up and wait in the waiting room there till they get him settled, then you can come see him."

While the orderly and Mrs. Reynolds took the service elevator Jaden and his dad took the passenger elevator and emerged right off the waiting area. Finding a seat they settled in for the next lag of their wait. Jaden pulled out his cell phone and texted Jeremy and as expected Deane was there with him. After filling them in on everything he knew about Aidan so far, he told them about Jimmy.

Jeremy and Deane comforted him as best they could with just words and promised to help anyway they could and come visit if it was possible. Just as Jaden was wrapping things up Mrs. Reynolds appeared from down the hall and quickly gave Jaden and her husband a hug.

"He's resting now. The doctors are still evaluating the tests, but they said they should know something shortly. Meanwhile you two can see him, just brace yourself. He has a lot of junk hooked up to him right now."

"Mom," Jaden said hugging his mom and looking sad, "I told dad already, but I need to tell you...about A and what's been going on. I'm sorry I didn't say anything...if I had..."

"No,'s not your fault. I noticed some things myself, but I just ignored them. It was no one's fault, but later we'll talk...okay? Right now we just need to be with your brother and let him know he's loved and that we're here for him."

Jaden nodded and allowed himself to be led off to Aidan's room.

As far as hospital rooms go, Aidan's was cheery enough, but there was still that feeling of dread that most people experience visiting places like this. There were two beds in the room, but Aidan was the only patient at the moment, his bed the closest to the door. 

Jaden almost collapsed when he saw his brother laying there, a breathing tube in his mouth, machines beeping all around him and an IV slowly dripping into his arm. He was as pale as death and in no way resembled the vibrant, happy, and loving boy he remembered.

"Hey," Jaden said taking his brother's hand and holding it gently, "I know you can't hear me, but I think you can feel me, cause I sure can feel you. I'm sorry I didn't try to get you help...before all this went down, but I didn't want to rat you out in case you were just being an ass or something," Jaden said as tears ran down his face, "but..hey, you're tough and you got me and mom and dad and everyone else on your side. You're gonna beat this and then we'll be back just like we used to be. I'll even move back in..if you want me too. Well, just hang in there and get some rest. I'll be right here if you need me."

"It looks worse than it is," Mrs. Reynolds said softly, "they just want to monitor his vitals and such till they know what their dealing with."

Mr. Reynolds nodded as he stood beside his son's bed, then leaning down he brushed a stray lock of hair from his forehead and kissed him there. He was trying to be strong, but he was much more sensitive than most men, and it was a real struggle not to start bawling. He was grateful for his wife's strength and her calming presence and for Jaden's loving attitude. It was those two who kept him strong and focused as he coped with his feelings.

"Ah, you must be the Reynolds clan," a middle-aged man in a white coat said breezing in and smiling warmly.

"Yes, we're Aidan's parents and this is his twin brother Jaden," Mrs. Reynolds said taking the lead. 

"I'm Doctor Miller, I've been assigned to your son's case and I need to discuss our finding with you. If you would follow me, we'll go to one of the conference rooms down the hall."

"Can I stay with Aidan?" Jaden said still holding his hand and not wanting to break that fragile tie with his brother.

"It's up to your folks," Dr. Miller said smiling.

"All right, we'll fill you in later," Mr. Reynolds said. It was probably for the best, he decided, because if it was bad news, he didn't want Jaden to see him break down.

When they were gone Jaden moved closer and leaned down and kissed his brother's face, "Hey A, I'm still here. Mom and dad are talkin' to the doc. Probably gonna give you a brain transplant or something," he joked. Then he sighed, "I'm really sorry you had to go through all this stuff. I feel awful. I just..." he choked up then, "I just love you so much. You gotta' get better, I can't live without you. You're like...part of me." 

He wiped at his eyes and suddenly he noticed Aidan's eyes were open and he was staring at Jaden with a blank look in his eyes. He couldn't talk because of the breathing tube, but  he did make a sort of grunting noise causing Jaden to become agitated. Should he call for the nurse? he wondered. But before he could decide, Aidan's eyes closed and a peaceful look came across his face.

Jaden placed his hand on his brother's chest to feel the slow rise and fall as he breathed, then leaning down he placed his ear against his brother's chest and listened to his heartbeat. Satisfied that his brother was okay, he relaxed a little and continued to talk softly to him. 

Down the hall in a small room with only a couch and a chair Dr. Miller sat in the chair facing the two parents on the couch and filled them in on what they'd found so far.

"As we first suspected your son Aidan has a small growth in the cerebrum. This area of the brain is where most of our thinking processes originate and a tumor in this area may cause loss of memory, mood swings, and interfere with rational thinking. Have there been any instances of irrational or changed behavior?"

"Yes, for a while now," Mrs. Reynolds said feeling as guilty as Jaden had, "We thought it was because his boyfriend moved away at first, but he seemed to get over that rather quickly. Then he began to take an interest in music and began to post videos on YouTube. We thought perhaps the notoriety had gone to his head...." she paused to compose herself, "but apparently there were some things we didn't see. His teachers have noticed changes as well and his brother, being so close of course, saw all of it."

Mr. Reynolds joined in then filling them in on what Jaden had told him and Dr. Miller seemed very interested in what he had to say.

"From what you've just told me the symptoms seem to confirm our first diagnosis. Now we just need to find out exactly what kind of tumor we are dealing with and decide what to do about it. Meanwhile we'll need to keep Aidan for a few days just to make sure there hasn't been any permanent damage."

"What kind of damage?" Mr. Reynolds asked feeling a sinking feeling descend over him.

"Oh, I don't think there's anything specific, but his outburst today probably means the pressure in his brain is building and without proper treatment there could be...well, seizures or brain damage."

"Brain damage," Mrs. Reynolds said sounding frightened.

"Look, I'm not trying to scare you. I just want you to understand the seriousness of this situation. We still have a few more tests to run, but at some may be necessary."

"When will you know more Doctor?" Mr. Reynolds asked trying to keep his voice even.

"Tomorrow I should be able to tell you more. For now all we can do is let him rest and monitor him to make sure there is no recurrence of the episode he experienced today."

"All right, thank you Doctor. I will be staying with him until he goes home, I hope that's all right?" Mrs. Reynolds said softly.

"Of course, I understand, I have a son of my own. In the meantime, if you need anything just call my service, the desk has the number. Otherwise I will see you tomorrow sometime after one."

"Thank you Doctor Miller," Mr. Reynolds said rising and offering his hand, "What's you've told us is encouraging, if not a bit scary."

"Don't worry, we see this sort of thing a lot and we have a pretty good track record when it comes to complete recovery. We'll know more tomorrow and map our his treatment and I'll keep you informed every step of the way."

Back in Aidan's room Jaden was softly singing to his brother and when his parents entered he continued and only then did he turn to his parents.

"That's A's favorite song," he said wiping a tear away.

"That was lovely honey. We need to talk with you, maybe we should go into the waiting room."

"But I don't want to leave him..."

"He'll be fine honey, it will only take a few minutes and then your father is going to take you home and pick up a few things for me. I'll be spending the night."

"I want to stay too..." Jaden said growing agitated.

"Only one of us can stay son," Mr. Reynolds said gently, "besides you have school tomorrow."

" I have to go to school?"

"We'll see..." he mumbled, "but right now we're going to go get mom's clothes and have some dinner. Dear do you want me to bring you something to eat?"

"Maybe a sandwich or something, an apple..." she muttered as she turned her attention to her son lying in the bed next to her.

"Okay, any special clothes?"

"Just some jeans or slacks and a top and clean undies and a bra, oh and my pink Reeboks."

"Shampoo, deodorant, toothbrush and toothpaste, and anything else I can think of," he said giving her a hug and kiss.

"Thanks, you're the best. Jaden give me a hug dear and try not to worry. I'll keep you guys informed...okay?"

"I wish I could stay..."

"You need to rest son, you can see him tomorrow."

"Okay, I love you mom," Jaden said sadly, then going to his brother one last time he leaned down and kissed him on the forehead, "I love you bro, get well...okay?"


In the car Jaden stared out the window at the passing cars and streetlights and brooded. He knew what happened wasn't totally his fault, but he still felt guilty. If he had said something sooner would that have made a difference, or would his parents have just tried to handle things themselves? 

Then suddenly he remembered Jimmy and he felt even worse. 

"Dad, when you go back to take mom her stuff, can I visit Jimmy?"

"I don't see why not, if he's allowed visitors, but it's very important that you don't get too close. I don't want you getting sick or infecting the rest of us."

"I...never thought of that, maybe I should just call him."

"That might be best."

"I don't want to risk A getting sick," he said frowning, "poor kid's got enough to worry about."

"You know, if I haven't said this a million times before, I am so proud of you," he said patting his son on the leg, "And we are going to get through this thing, all of us."

"I know dad, I know, and I'm pretty proud of you too," he said grinning, then leaning in he hugged his dad, "I love you dad, but I'm so scared," he said breaking down at last.


"Hey, it's me...Jayden."

"Oh, hi. Hey, what's the deal with Aidan? Mom said he's here, in the hospital."

"Man, it's awful. He went crazy at school and then collapsed. The doctor says he has a brain tumor or something."

"No way...oh man, I'm so sorry...but he's gonna' be okay....right?" Jimmy said sounding ready to cry.

"Yeah, sure...totally...they can operate or something. The doctors here are the best. They do this stuff all the time," Jaden said enthusiastically, trying to convince himself as much as Jimmy.

"That's good. So...are you gonna visit me?"

"I can't man. I can't risk getting infected and exposing Aidan or my folks. I'm really sorry."

"Hey, it's okay. The Doctor says I'll be out in a day or two and by then I won't be contagious. You just take care of A, okay? I'll be fine."

"I'm sorry. I really wanted to see you. I love you so much. I wish you were here with me right now."

"I know, I love you too, but right now you need to be with your bro and your folks."

"You know, I been thinking a lot lately...about us, and I think...I think we should tell our folks how we feel about each other."

Jimmy laughed nervously, "Dude, I think they already know."

"No, I don't mean about the sex...I mean know, that we love each other."

"Are you sure about this?"

"What? Oh, do love me too....don't you?"

"Are you kidding? I don't just love you, I'm in love with you, but I wasn't sure exactly how you felt."

"Well, I'm telling you now Jimmy Durro, I'm in love with you too, and I want everyone to know it."

"This is so sudden," Jimmy giggled.

"When you get better we'll tell them, okay?" Jaden said excitedly.

"Okay, but...what about A? We shouldn't mess with our folks' minds till A is better."

"Well, as usual you are right, but as soon as A is better, then we'll tell em'."

"Okay, sounds great. Oops, mom is back and the nurse is here. I gotta' go. Call me tomorrow, okay?"

"Yeah, I will. I know you can't say it back with them there but...I love you."

"Yes, I can...I love you too, goodnight," he said grinning.

Jaden pocketed his phone and went off to join his parents in Aidan's room. He was pleased to see that they had removed the breathing tube and Aidan was awake and looking much better than the last time he'd seen him.

"Hey bro," Aidan said in a hoarse voice.

"Hey," Jaden said cheerfully as he approached the bed, "you look great today. How do you feel?" he asked taking his brother's hand in his.

"With my fingers," Aidan joked, "but seriously, except for a headache I'm fine."

"Don't you ever do that to me again," Jaden scolded as he hugged his brother and kissed his face.

"Do what?" Aidan said looking puzzled.

Jaden looked at his folks and seeing the look on their face he debated what to say next.

"You know, scaring me like that. But you're better now and when you get home I'll take care of you."

"I don't need anyone taking care of me, I'm fine."

"Has the Doctor been in yet mom?" Jaden said turning to his folks.

"Yes, we'll talk later."

Aidan looked at his mother curiously and frowned, "Don't I get to know what's going on?"

"Of course dear," she sighed, "but we'd like to talk to your brother first."

"I don't get it, I'm the one who's sick...why does J need to hear it first?" Aidan said growing more agitated by the minute.

"Son, relax," Mr. Reynolds said soothingly, "We're not hiding anything from you. I promise, we are not going to treat you like a little kid. You have a right to know what's going on and we'll share everything we know with you."

"Okay, sorry. Oh crap...I need to pee..."

"Do you want me to ring for the nurse, or we can help you dear?" Mrs. Reynolds said smoothing back his hair.

"I want J to do it, can you leave us alone a minute?"

"Oh, all right. I guess Jaden can handle that. Here dear, here's the urine bottle. I assume you know how it works," she teased.

"Uh, let's see...he sits on it..right?" Jaden joked.

"This should be interesting," Mr. Reynolds laughed as they headed out the door.

Once they were alone Jaden threw back the covers and discovered that Aidan was wearing only one of those flimsy hospital gowns beneath. 

"Nice look for ya' bro," Jaden laughed.

"Thanks. If you're done admiring my clothes could you maybe hurry? I need to pee really bad."

"Sorry," Jaden said raising the gown to expose Aidan's shriveled penis, "Bro, what happened to your wang? It's tiny."

"Shut up and stick it in the bottle please or I'll piss on you," Aidan laughed. 

It was good to hear his brother laugh and Jaden smiled as he grabbed A's limp penis and stuffed it in the bottle.

"Let er' rip bro. Fill that sucker up. Too bad we're not in the shower, you could hose me down," he laughed.

"Ahh..that feels good.

"Man, you weren't kidding. What did you drink, a six pack?"

"Not unless it was in the IV bag," Aidan joked.

"Surprised they didn't give you one of those catheter things."

"They did, but I made em' take it out as soon as I was awake and my dick still hurts."

"Ah man, I don't want to hear about that. It sounds awful."

"It is, they shove this tube up your pee hole..."

"AHHHH...shut up, I don't want to hear that," Jaden said covering his ears and causing Aidan to laugh.

"Pussy," Aidan laughed.

"Pussy, pussy? I'll show you who's a pussy when you get outa' here," Jaden said making a menacing move toward his brother.

"Security!" Aidan laughed, "Oh..oh, it hurts when I laugh."

"You okay bro?" Jaden asked with concern.

"Fine, just got a super colossal headache."

"Ah...sorry bro. Want me to rub your widdle head?"

"My widdle head? Is that my dick head?" Aidan joked.

"Well, I could do that too, if the nurses stay away long enough," Jaden said grinning.

"Maybe later, right now...I think I'll take a nap."

"Oh, okay...need me to fluff your pillow?"

"Umm...naw, it's okay," Aidan said yawning.

"Okay, I'll just sit over here and watch you."


"Yeah bro."

"Will you...sing to me?"

"What, well...yeah, but you're the singer. What would you like to hear?"

"How about Heart Like Stone? It's my favorite."

"Oh, okay...I know the words, but I've never sang the chorus, just backup, but I'll try."

"Thanks," Aidan said yawning again.

Jaden moved closer and took his brother's hand and began singing softly. As he got further into the song he became more confident and his clear and beautiful voice filled the room. Unknown to Jaden a nurse stuck her head in, but seeing Jaden singing to his brother she quietly closed the door and went back to the nurse's station as she wiped a tear from her eye.

When Jaden was sure Aidan was asleep he let the song wind down, humming toward the end and then leaning down, he kissed his brother's face. Sighing deeply he went to the window and stared out at the city and thought about all that had happened and soon tears were streaming down his face.

Mr. Reynolds came in a short time later and went to Jaden and hugged him gently and led him from the room and into the little family conference room where Mrs. Reynolds awaited their arrival.

Jaden knew something serious was about to happen, some horrible truth was about to revealed, and he felt a sense of panic wash over him. What if A was going to die? he thought as a scream struggled to escape his lungs, but instead he sat down and numbly listened as his father began.

"We talked to Dr. Miller while you were with A just now. The tests have confirmed what he suspected, that it was a brain tumor that caused Aidan's attack and the personality changes. According to all indications it's not malignant, which is a good thing."

"Uh...that means it's not cancer, right?"

"Yes, which means it hasn't and won't spread. It's a small growth right now and Doctor Miller says removing it is the best option, however..."

Uh oh, Jaden thought, he knew things were going to good.

"The tumor is locate in a part of the cerebrum that makes the surgery very tricky. Doctor Miller says there is a small chance that there might be some lasting damage if anything goes wrong."

" what?" Jaden asked swallowing hard.

"Oh, nothing life threatening, maybe some memory loss, or a slight change in personality."

"What happens if they just leave it alone and don't take it out?"

"Dr. Miller says that's not a good option, because of what has already happened. The episode the other day could have been a lot worse than it was simply because there were other people around. If something like that had happened when he was alone, he could have harmed himself, even died," Mr.  Reynolds said looking very serious now."

"So...our only choice is for the Doctor to operate and take the tumor out, and then...wait to see if A's gonna be different?" Jaden said sounding agitated, "Mom, dad, I'm just as kid, but I watch a lot of TV and movies...and in them they always ask for a second opinion before they make decisions like this...shouldn't we?"

Mrs. Reynolds smiled sadly, "You're exactly right, and for that reason we have another Doctor, Doctor Ishgood, who is also evaluating your brother's case. We should hear from him by tomorrow at the latest."

"When are you gonna tell A?"

"As soon as we hear back from Dr. Ishgood. Meanwhile, we'll tell him the basics and that we are still waiting for the results of the tests and a final prognosis."

"He won't buy it, mom. He's smarter than me and he'll know something is up. I think you should cut the bull...sorry, and just tell him the truth. If it was me I'd want to know. He's strong, he can handle it."

The two adults locked eyes and communicated silently, much as the twins did. Then Mr. Reynolds sighed and taking his wife's hand he nodded, "I think once again, our son has proven that he knows more about his brother than we will ever know.  And in this case, I think he is right."

"I think so too," Mrs. Reynolds said smiling sadly, "and there's no time like the present. When he wakes up I think the three of us should tell him what's going on."

The three took a break first, eating a light lunch in the cafeteria, but none of them had much of an appetite. As Jaden sipped his soda he thought about Jimmy and decided to give him a call and fill him in. Excusing himself he went outside to the little garden just outside the cafeteria and called Jimmy.

He answered on the first ring and sounded almost cheery.

"You must be feeling better."

"My fever broke and the Doc says I can go home tomorrow if it stays down."

"Awesome. I'm glad, but I really called to tell you about A."

"He's okay, right?" Jimmy asked sounding panicky.

"Yeah, he's awake and barking at everyone," Jaden chuckled, "but..."

"But...but what?"

"He has a brain tumor Jimmy. That's what caused all the crazy stuff and the breakdown at school. It puts pressure on his brain and effects things like memory and his personality."

"So, now that they know they can fix it...right?"

"Fortunately it's not cancerous, so if they remove it things should be fine...but..."

"Here we go again, but what?"

"But the Doc says there's a chance there might be some temporary or...even permanent changes if things go wrong."

"But that won't happen...right? The Docs will make sure things don't go wrong..right?"

"Well..sure, they know what they're doing and they are pretty sure things will be fine, but there's always that slim chance..."

"But you gotta' let em do it, right?"

"Yeah, there's no other way to get rid of it, folks asked for a second opinion and we're supposed to hear from him tomorrow."

"Does A know?"

"Not yet. My folks were going to sort of tell him part of it and not all, but I convinced them that he needed to know it all. I mean, after all it's his head and his life."

"Yeah, I'd want to know. You did right bro."

"So, that's what we're gonna do now. We just finished lunch and they're waiting on me, so I guess I should go. I just needed to talk to you. I wish you were here with me...I need you Jimmy," Jaden said sniffing back a few tears.

"Oh man...don't cry. I'll be out of here soon and I promise I'll spend every minute with you that I can."

"I know, I'm sorry. I just feel so alone right now. I mean I always had A before, or I have no one."

"What about Jeremy and Dee?"

"They're kind of busy with each other right now," Jaden laughed sadly.

"Well, I bet they'll come see A as soon as they can."

"Yeah, probably. Well, I gotta go. I love you babe," Jaden said softly.

"I love you too," Jimmy said, and for once he didn't care that his mom was right there in the room listening, "I love you more than ever," he added looking up to see his mom smiling warmly, "Give A a kiss for me and tell him I said to get better."

When Jaden hung up he pulled himself together then went off to gather up his parents and together they went back to Aidan's room.

Aidan was awake now and looking bored and a little agitated, but when he saw his three favorite people he perked up.

"Hi guys, where ya been?"

"We had a delicious lunch in the cafeteria, NOT!" Jaden joked.

"I had Jello and some soup that looked like watered poop," Aidan laughed, "so lucky you."

"Ewww...guess I'll have to see about smuggling in some junk food," Jaden said grinning.

" guys look kind of serious. Did you get some bad news or something?" Aidan said looking at this parents.

"No, nothing like that, but we would like to talk to you about what the Doctors have told us."

"Oh, okay...but first, can I ask one thing?" Aidan said looking serious.

"Yes son," Mrs. Reynolds said smoothing back Aidan's hair and kissing his face.

"All I ask is...give it to me straight, don't lie to me..okay?"

Mrs. Reynolds nodded, "Thanks to your brother, we have decided you deserve to know everything about your condition."

Between the two adults, and with Jaden's help, they filled Aidan in on what they knew so far and what was to come. 

"Wow, so I've been going crazy because I have a tumor in my head?" Aidan said frowning, "Why didn't you guys tell me I was being such an ass and acting all crazy? I swear I don't remember much of that stuff."

Jaden looked stricken when Aidan said that and squeezed his hand, "It's my fault bro, I didn't say anything because I didn't want to rat you out. I just thought you were being...well you know..."

"A little bitch?" Aidan giggled, "I get it J, don't sweat it. It wasn't your fault. I just didn't know I was doing all those crazy things. It's weird, it's like I don't remember much before I woke up in the hospital."

"Well, that's to be expected, but some of it will come back to you eventually, according to the Doctor." Mr. Reynolds said.

"So...if this Doctor says it's okay then they're going to open up my head up and remove the tumor. Will it mess up my hair?" Aidan said, trying to be humorous, but he felt anything but.

"I hope not," Jaden said kissing his brother on the forehead, "cause your hair is perfect, just like mine."

Mrs. Reynolds laughed softly, "You boys and your hair. You're worse than some girls."

"And prettier than some girls," Jaden reminded her.

Mr. Reynolds shook his head and smiled, "'re okay son? I want you to know that we'll be here every step of the way and we'll make sure you get the best treatment possible."

"I know dad," Aidan said smiling, "I'm not worried. I just...well, I wonder if this will affect my singing?"

"Oh, I doubt that. You might forget some lyrics, but you can relearn them easily enough."

"But...what about the thing the Doctor said about changes in me or memory loss...will I be the same boy once I have this surgery?"

"You'll always be Aidan Reynolds, no matter what," Mr. Reynolds chuckled, "The Doctor seems optimistic that everything will go well, he just has to disclose every possibility. We'll know more tomorrow after this new Doctor looks everything over. I'm told he is one of the finest brain surgeons in the Southeast."

"Wow, I bet he's expensive," Aidan said frowning, "Will our insurance cover this dad?"

Mr. Reynolds sighed, "Aidan, it wouldn't matter if I had to take another job and a second mortgage, all that's important right now is getting  you well...but..yes, we have very good insurance. So don't you go worrying about that."

"I'm not, I guess I just never thought about stuff like this before," Aidan said then fell quiet.

"A, don't're gonna be fine, I just know it," Jaden said patting his brother gently.

"I know, thanks. I'm kind of tired now, but I really need to pee. Mom, dad can you go and let Jaden help  me pee? Then I'm gonna take a nap."

"Of course honey. We'll be in the waiting room if you need us," Mrs. Reynolds said kissing him on the cheek.

Mr. Reynolds patted him gently and smiled at him as she spoke, "Rest now son, I love you."

"Love you too dad."

When they were gone Jaden took care of business, but this time didn't joke around. He knew Aidan was feeling a little down and he felt helpless to help him. As soon as Aidan was done peeing he replaced his gown and pulled the cover back up over him and took the bottle to the bathroom and emptied it and rinsed it out.

When he got back Aidan's eyes were closed and he appeared to be asleep. Pulling the covers up around his brother's neck, he kissed him on the lips and slowly left the room.

"He's asleep," Jaden said as he sat down by his parents.

"I hope what we told him hasn't upset him too much," Mrs. Reynolds said frowning.

"Of course he's upset," Mr. Reynolds said calmly, "but he has as right to know what's happening with him. We just need to keep reminding him that we're here for him and that we love him. Thank you for being so good to him Jaden. He will need you most of all since you boys are so close."

"I can almost feel what he does," Jaden said looking serious, "and I think he's gonna be fine, I really do. I just think the brain tumor is making him depressed or something. I don't think it's what you told him, I think it's the pressure or something."

"You may be right," Mrs. Reynolds said nodding her head, "Aidan has always been so upbeat and the old Aidan would have tackled this with enthusiasm and been reassuring us."

"That's what I mean, he's not really himself yet."

"You know, for a teenager you're pretty smart," Mr. Reynolds teased as he put his son in a headlock.

"Well, for an adult you're pretty smart yourself," Jaden giggled.

"Being smart isn't all it's cracked up to be. Sometimes it's best to be ignorant," Mr. Reynolds said sighing, "I just want my son back again."


Jaden decided to go back to school the next day, thinking that school might keep his mind off Aidan and the operation. Unfortunately he was swarmed by well wishers and the curious wanting to know what was going on. By lunch Jaden was exhausted from telling and re-telling the story and ready for some down time.

As he opened his lunch bag Jeremy and Dee slid in across from him.


"You look like shit," Jeremy said grinning, "but I would too if it was my bro in the hospital."

"Is there anything we can do?" Dee asked patting Jaden's hand gently.

"You could go see him I guess," Jaden said sighing, "he needs to see his friends right now."

"Absolutely, we'll go today," Jeremy said, "Can we hitch a ride with you?"

"Sure, I'm sure dad won't mind. Mom hasn't left the hospital since it happened though."

"So...when are they going to operate?"

"Dunno yet, this other Doctor is giving them a second opinion today and dad says this new Doctor is like some kind of expert."

"That's good. I'm sure he'll be fine though. I'm just sorry we didn't figure out what was going on before all this crap happened," Dee said frowning.

"Yeah, well...I still blame myself for that," Jaden said picking at his lunch, "I should've went to mom and dad and told them what was going on."

"No man, it's not your fault. Your folks should've noticed something too," Jeremy said soothingly.

"I just... I wish it was me instead of him. He's not as strong as I am..."

"Whoa, dude. Don't say that. He'll be fine. He's got you and your folks and half the school behind him. He's a popular dude and we're all rooting for him."

"I know, everyone has been nice...even if I am kind of tired of telling the story."

"Well, its probably all over school by now, so you should be fine this afternoon," Dee said smiling.

"Yeah, I guess. Man, I wish Jimmy was here..." Jaden sighed.

"So, how's he doin'?"

"He said the fever broke and he could probably come home today. I sure hope so. But mom and dad won't let me see him till he's over it. They don't want to risk me giving the flu to A, which I can totally understand. But it still sucks."

"Yeah, I heard a bunch of kids came down with the flu, but I don't t think any of em' wound up in the hospital," Dee offered.

"I'm surprised I didn't get it too, after all we swapped a lot of slobber," Jaden said grinning.

"And God only knows what else," Jeremy laughed.

"That too," Jaden confessed, "just didn't want to embarrass you virgins," he teased.

"So who says we're virgins," Dee chuckled.

"OH...oh, I you two did the deed?"

"Not exactly, but we had fun," Dee said grinning.

"Nothin' wrong with a little fun, huh Jer?"

"I got nothin' against fun, boys or girls."

"Wow, so open-minded," Jaden chuckled, "maybe when Jimmy and A get better we should have a little party."

"Uh uh, not sharing my lady with you horny dogs," Jeremy said taking Dee's hand, "I just got her away from you guys."

"Well, I had to try, but I totally respect that. I think it's cool actually."

They were interrupted by a boy neither of them knew, but who apparently knew Jaden. He was tall and chubby with dirty looking hair and a what looked like a perpetual smirk.

"So I hear your faggot brother has a brain tumor. Good riddance to one more homo," he said loudly causing everyone within hearing distance to hush and tune in, "Too bad all of you faggots don't get brain tumors and die."

Jaden was up and out of his seat in a second, but Jeremy was up and moving too. Jaden had him by the collar and was just about to deliver a nose smashing punch when the lunchroom monitor, Mr. Gray, came running up and pulled them apart.

"What's going on here? Jaden I'm surprised at you, fighting...really?"

"He said horrible things about my brother," Jaden said still seething and ready to strike if he got an opening.

Another teacher appeared then and led Jaden off to the office while Mr. Gray stayed with the kid.

"Did anyone else see what happened?" he asked of everyone within earshot.

Jeremy and Dee were first to speak up and then a dozen or so other kids, most of them friends of the twins, reinforced their story.

"What's you name young man?"

"Billy...Billy Nelson," he kid said still looking smug, "I gotta' right to my opinions. It's a free country ain't it. Freedom of speech and all that?"

"This school has very strict rules about bullying and harassment and you, young man, have crossed the line. Come with the Principals office."

By the time they arrived at the office Jaden had already been interviewed by the Principal, and pending verification of what Jaden had told him, he saw no reason to punish Jaden. When Mr. Gray showed up with Billy Nelson, Jaden was asked to wait in the outer office while he questioned the other boy.

"Jaden I'm so sorry about your brother," the office secretary said once he was seated, "everyone in this school thinks the world of you and your brother and our prayers go out to you and your family."

"Not everyone I guess..." Jaden muttered. 

"What happened? Or would you rather not talk about it?"

"I think I'll let the Principal tell you, I'm pretty mad right now."

"All right. Well, you know Principal Parker is a fair man and he'll do what needs to be done."

Jaden shrugged and stared at the clock. Not only had this douche bag pissed him off by spewing his homophobic garbage, he had ruined Jaden's lunch and now his stomach was all tangled up in knots.

Suddenly Jaden heard a loud commotion coming from the office and a few moments later the school security officer, Mr. Bowers, who was an off duty policeman, came bursting in and headed straight to the Principal's office. 

A few minutes later Officer Bowers came out with the Nelson kid in cuffs and led him away. Jaden stared wide-eyed as they went out the door and stood to look over the counter separating the outer office from the Principal's. In the open doorway he could see Mr. Parker talking to the office secretary and holding his eye. Jaden was confused at first, then it occurred to him: the kid must've punched Mr. Parker in the eye. As much as he wanted revenge on the kid, he felt a little bad that the kid was led away in cuffs. What would happen to him? he wondered, Punching a Principal had to be a big deal even if you were a kid.

"Mr. Reynolds," Principal Parker called after a few minutes, "You may go back to class. Under the circumstances there will be no disciplinary action against you, but I will remind you that violence is not allowed in our school."

"Thank you sir," Jaden said warmly, "and sorry about...the eye."

Lunch was over but at least the bell for the first afternoon class hadn't rang yet and Jaden was able to make it to class on time. Several of the students in the class had witnessed the incident at lunch and were peppering him with questions, but he was in no mood to answer them.

"Settle down class," their instructor said after a bit, "since the lunchroom incident seems to be of interest to everyone, I think we need to discuss that first and get it out of the way."

Jaden groaned internally, but in a way he was glad to get things out and express his feelings. He was proud of who he was and of Aidan and wasn't afraid or ashamed to tell everyone just what happened.

"So that's pretty much it. I was so mad I wanted to hit him, but Mr. Gray pulled me off him in time and then I went to the Principal's office and told Mr. Parker what happened. Then they brought that kid in and I guess he punched Mr. Parker and they took him away in cuffs."

"Since this is Social Studies, why don't we spend the rest of the hour talking about what happened and how it relates to you as students? Anyone want to express their feelings?"

A hand toward the back was raised rather quickly. It belonged to one of the boys on the football team that Jaden only knew by name, Jeff, though he'd always seemed friendly and seemed like a decent guy.

"I think that guy was a jerk. It's no one's business whether someone is gay or straight or whatever and to say things like that about someone's brother, especially if they're sick or whatever, is just wrong. I would have punched the guy myself if I'd been there."

Jaden had a whole new insight into Jeff and he gave him a smile.

"Anyone else?"

A girl near the front, Becca, was next. "I love Aidan, he's so cool. I follow him on YouTube and I think he's amazing. I don't know why anyone would say those horrible things about him. That kid that did it must be sick or something himself."

Another girl, Maryanna, a Hispanic girl, raised her hand then. "I think maybe that boy...maybe he has problems. Maybe he doesn't have a good family or he's abused or bullied. You never know why people do those kind of things. I'm not saying he was right or that he shouldn't be punished, but there's reasons people are the way they are."

"Good point Maryanna. Studies tend to prove that a majority of those who become bullies were bullied at some point in their life. Also abused kids tend to lash out at other kids who are weaker, constantly trying to balance the scales of power in their favor."

"So you're saying that if someone is bullied or abused, they do it to other people to try to take back some of the power that was taken away from them by the abuser?" Jaden said not even bothering to raise his hand.

"Exactly, Jaden...I know you know a lot about this subject. You and your little group have done some wonderful things in this school to stop bullying and make sure it gets reported. Your safe haven table in the lunchroom has caught the attention of not only the students but faculty as well, and your idea has spread to other schools. Also, it was because of you and your brother and your friends that we finally got a GSA chapter and it is thriving.

I'm not trying to embarrass you. I said all that because I wanted to ask you this: because you understand bullying and because you do so much to prevent it, how did it make you feel to be the target of such hatred and intolerance?"

Wait, this had to be a trick question. He had to know it made Jaden as mad as hell, thus the reason he was going to clean the kid's clock. But the more he thought about it the more Jaden knew that wasn't the real issue here and that Mr. Clark was just trying to make him think.

"I guess I just felt like it was so unfair to pick on someone who wasn't there to defend themselves...someone who was fighting for their life and who has never done anything to hurt anyone in his whole life," Jaden said barely able to control his emotions, "The lashing out was just instinct I guess. Someone hurt me, I wanted to hurt them back, but the truth was I just felt so helpless. I knew no words I could say would change what he said or how he felt and I just felt so...hopeless. I felt like maybe I hadn't made a difference at all...if kids still felt that way. But now I realize...I can't change how anyone feels by beating them up. It takes patience and understanding. My boyfriend Jimmy is an example of that. Some of you guys may remember what a jerk he used to be, but it's like Maryanna said, once we figured out why he was acting that way it was easy to see what the real problem was."

"I'll be honest: when I saw them take that kid away in cuffs...I felt sorry for him. I knew he was in deep trouble and I don't know if he has folks that will take up for him and help him or if this will just make things worse for him at home. I feel bad that I let things get that far. I wish I had just let his words roll off my back and tried to control my anger..." Jaden lowered  his head and composed himself as the teacher took over.

"Very well said and obviously heart-felt. Thank you Jaden for sharing. It's no secret why you and your group are so successful in what you do, you are intelligent beyond your years and most of all you have good hearts. Now, who's next?"

By the end of the day Jaden was exhausted. When his dad came to pick him up he asked about giving Jeremy and Dee a ride to the hospital and as expected he agreed. On the way home Jaden filled his dad in on what happened at school. When he was finished he sighed and looked to his dad for his reaction.

"Jaden, son...I'm very happy that you stood up for your brother, but please keep in mind that your school has a zero tolerance for violence. You were lucky this time. Your teachers and Mr. Parker know what a difficult time this is for you and they all think the world of you two boys, but if you had hit that boy, it would have been a very different situation. I know how you must've felt, I'm not sure I wouldn't have done the same thing, but sometimes you just have to take a deep breath first and be the bigger person."

"I'd have to put on 50 pounds to be bigger than that jerk," Jaden mumbled.

"Son, I'm on your side here, but I don't want you to get into trouble over something like this."

"I know, are you gonna tell mom?"

Mr. Reynolds stared straight ahead for a moment as if studying the road then he turned to Jaden. "You know, right now your mom has enough to think about, maybe we should save this for another time," he said smiling.

"Yeah, I think you're right."

After a quick snack Jaden did his homework and took a shower. The plan was to go eat a quick dinner then go to Jeremy's to pick up the two young lovers and then go visit Aidan in the hospital. Mr. Reynolds had worked half a day and was finishing up some things online when his phone rang. 

Jaden was just coming down the stairs as he heard his father talking on the phone and suddenly his father was yelling for him.

"Jaden, come on..we gotta go NOW. It's your brother he's had a seizure and they want to operate on him right away."

Jaden followed his dad to the car then as soon as they were on the way he called Jeremy to let him know what had happened. Jeremy seemed as upset as Jaden and said he would get Isaac to bring him and Dee and they'd meet him at the hospital.

"What did the doctor tell mom exactly?" Jaden asked as he hung up.

"She just said that Aidan had some sort of seizure  and though they have stabilized him, he thinks they need to remove the tumor as soon as possible to relieve the pressure."

" this a dangerous operation dad? Please don't try to hide anything from me dad, if it's serious I deserve to know," Jaden said with wet eyes.

"Your mother and I agree that you deserve to know everything that's going on, but I admit I don't know any more than you do at this point. Is it serious? yes. Any surgery is serious, and opening up someone's head is always risky, but the Doctors here are very good and very experienced. Your brother is strong and healthy, and everything is in his favor. We just have to trust in the Doctors and pray for the best outcome."

"He's gonna be okay...once the surgery is done...right?"

"I don't think anything has changed as far as the outcome, we just had to move things up a bit, that's all."

"I know dad, but I'm still worried," Jaden admitted.

"You wouldn't be human if you weren't. I'm worried too, but I have this feeling...deep down inside, that everything will be fine."

"I'll feel better after I see him and talk to him..."

"Well, we'll be there soon. I've asked them to wait till we get there to prep him, so we'll be able to visit with him before the surgery."

Jaden fell quiet then, thinking his thoughts and trying to be upbeat and positive, but there was a sinking feeling in his chest that just wouldn't go away. He wished once again that Jimmy was well and with him, but he knew Jeremy and Dee and perhaps Isaac would be there waiting for him and that would help. No one should be alone when they were facing something as traumatic as this, and he was thankful for his family and friends.

As they stepped out of the elevator they were greeted by Mrs. Reynolds, who despite having lived at the hospital since Aidan's admittance, looked fresh and in control.

They hugged her and she led them off to Aidan's room with only the usual greeting. Aidan was sitting up in bed, but he looked nothing like the boy Jaden had left the night before. There were dark circles under his eyes and he had one of those little oxygen tubes in his nose. 

When he saw Jaden a huge smile filled his face and he reached out the hand that didn't have an IV in it.

"Bubba," Aidan said in a shaky voice.

"Hey," Jaden said taking his hand and squeezing it gently, "can't leave you alone for a minute. I hear you been causin' trouble again."

Aidan laughed weakly, "Sorry bro, you know how I am, always begging for attention."

"It's cool, their gonna give you a brain transplant and then you won't be so lame," he joked.

"Maybe we could just switch brains," Aidan teased.

"Huh uh, I don't want to be gay," he laughed.

"J...thanks for making me laugh. I was pretty scared, but I know if you can make jokes that I must be going to be okay."

"You are going to be okay. We got the best docs in the country working on you and you'll be good as new before you know it."

"Thanks, how's Jimmy?"

"He went home today, but he's still off limits cause' he might still be contagious, but Jeremy and Dee and Isaac are coming."

Aidan nodded, "Head hurts," he said winching, "be glad when they get me fixed up."

"Did they give you anything for the pain?"

"Nope, cause they didn't want to give me anything before the surgery. Hey, how's Jimmy?"

Jaden's face dropped when he heard his brother repeat the question about Jimmy once more. It seemed his short term memory was fading again. The sooner he got that operation the better."

"He's better, he went home today."

"That's good. Have you talked to Jeremy and Isaac lately?"

"Yeah, they want to come see you."

"That's good. Is dad here?"

"Here son," Mr. Reynolds said stepping up and kissing his son on the forehead, "how you feelin'?"

"Like someone hit me in the head with a ball bat," he said grinning.

"Sorry son, but just hang in there. Things are about to get better."

", what time are they gonna do the surgery?"

"Soon dear, just relax until then. The nurses will be in soon to prep you."

Jaden's phone alerted him of a text and he quickly checked his phone. "It's Jeremy. They're here, can I bring them in to see Aidan?"

"Yes, your mother and I will step out so you kids can visit," Mr. Reynolds said giving his sick son a kiss on the forehead.

Jaden found Jeremy and Isaac and Dee in the waiting room and they hugged him, almost causing him to break into tears.

"Come on, A's waiting to see you guys. We don't know how much time we have before they come to take him to surgery."

Jeremy looked stricken, but Isaac led the way with the young couple following close behind. Jaden pushed the door open and led the three to Aidan's bed. 

"Hi guys," Aidan said weakly, "thanks for coming. Sorry know, being an ass all those times."

"Hey, no need to apologize. We get it, right guys?" Jeremy said touching Aidan's arm gently. Sudden thoughts of what they'd done in bed that first night flashed through his head and he blushed. As much as he enjoyed doing stuff with Dee, the things he and A had done still seemed special and so amazing.

"Hey, dude, we love you and we got your back," Isaac said taking Aidan's hand and patting it gently, "You ain't got nothing to worry about. The docs are gonna' fix you all up and then we're gonna make some new videos and you're gonna be bigger than that Bieber dude." 

Everyone laughed and Aidan squeezed Isaac's hand, "Thanks, but I might lay off of the videos for a while, I want to spend some time with my family...and my friends. Being sick has made me realize just what I've been missing. Thanks guys for coming, it means a lot to me."

"It's not just us bro," Jeremy said whipping out his phone and pulling up his FaceBook page, "I posted a story about you on my page and Ive gotten a hundred likes and comments already and everyone is pullin' for you."

"Wow, cool," Aidan said as tears filled his eyes, "I'm gonna try to be the kind of person I should be from now on."

"Hey," Dee said coming over and kissing Aidan on the cheek, "We've missed you at school. The place isn't the same without you."

"Yeah, like rioting in the classroom..." he chuckled.

"Naw, the good times. I can't wait till you're back at our table lunch."

They were interrupted then by a nurse and  an orderly with a gurney, "Oh...time to say goodbye to Aidan kids, we're taking him to prep him for surgery," the nurse said.

Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds returned then and after the others had said goodbye they remained with Aidan till he was on the gurney and then accompanied him to the prep area. Jaden waited outside the door and kissed his brother goodbye and wished him luck then went to join his friends.

"Hey, it's gonna be okay, "Jeremy said when he saw the look on Jaden's face, "you just gotta' trust in the Doctors."

"Yeah, he's gonna be fine," Isaac said putting an arm around his friend, "and we're gonna be right here when he wakes up."

"Thanks guys, but who knows how long that might be. You don't have to stay..."

"Oh yeah, trust me...we do. We're not gonna leave you guys to face this crap alone," Dee said joining Isaac and hugging from the other side. 

"Hey, make room for me," Jeremy said moving in to join the hug, "group hug," he laughed.

Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds returned a short time later and led the group to another waiting room, this one right outside the wing with the operating rooms.

"Is anyone hungry?" Mr. Reynolds asked after a while, "It's going to be awhile and there's nothing we can do till it's over."

"I could eat," Jaden said gathering up his buddies, come on guys, dad's buying," he chuckled.

The six found a large table in the cafeteria and sat down their trays and despite their nervousness and fears they managed to eat their impromptu dinner. Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds were impressed that the twins' friends were offering their support, but then it was typical of the kind of friends the twins attracted.

"How long will the surgery take?" Jaden asked as they finished up their meal.

"No more than an hour or so," Mr. Reynolds said, "then he'll be in recovery for a while before they return him to his room. One of us can be with him in recovery and your mother has volunteered for that."

"I think you kids need to call your parents and make sure it's okay for you to stay," Mrs. Reynolds said looking at the three with mothering eyes.

"I know our folks will be cool with it, but if Dee's mom wants her home I'll take her," Isaac said smiling.

"My mom's at work right now anyway," Dee said, "I called her before we left and she's fine with me staying as long as the boys do."

Back in the waiting room Isaac went off by himself and called his folks and they agreed the boys could stay as late as 9 pm if necessary. They were genuinely concerned and offered their prayers and love.

"It's cool, our folks said we could stay till at least 9."

"I'm sure he'll be back in his room long before that," Mrs. Reynolds said.

The four teens busied themselves with their phones and chatted quietly among themselves as Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds sat holding hands and silently praying for their son.

The time passed slowly, people came and went, and the teens grew more and more restless. Finally Jaden suggested they go down to the garden area and get some fresh air and the adults agreed it was a good idea.

Once the teens were outside Jeremy and Dee found a bench and sat down holding hands leaving Isaac and Jaden to talk privately.

"How you holdin' up?" Isaac said as they walked around the small lush garden.

"Fine I guess. Better since you guys got here. Thanks again for coming and bringing Jeremy and Dee."

"Welcome. Speaking of those two, ain't they cute together?"

"Yeah, they really have hit it off, that's for sure. I'm surprised Jeremy wasn't mad at me and Jimmy because of...well, you know because we used to hang with her."

"Why? If you mean cause you guys messed around, which I'm only guessing, Jeremy isn't innocent either. I shouldn't say this, but I know he'd be cool with it. After he and Aidan pulled me into their sex play, we tried some stuff on our own. Just a couple times, but it was fun and we're cool with guilt or shame. None of us are innocent and it's stupid to think girls can't have that kind of fun without being labeled sluts, or for us to expect them to be virgins when we're sure as hell not. So whatever went on with you three, that was then, and this is now, and Jeremy could care less."

"I'm not sure I could be so open-minded, but then Jeremy is a cool dude. I'm glad he and Dee found each other and it's working out for them. I think they might be falling in love," Jaden said smiling.

"I think my bro was already in love with that shorty before they ever started dating," Isaac laughed.

"Yeah, he was always staring at her and drooling," Jaden laughed. It felt good to laugh, to be alive, and to be with people he respected and maybe loved a little. Life was good, but there was a sadness deep inside that wouldn't go away until Aidan was well again.

Jaden's cell rang then and as he fished it out of his pocket he saw it was his dad calling.

"Come back up son, Aidan is out of surgery."

"Be right there dad," Jaden said then hanging up he called to the others, "Come on guys, A's is out of surgery."

On the way up to the third floor Jaden was quiet. He had a million thoughts running through his head, and sensing his mood, Dee slipped her hand in his and squeezed it gently.

"It's gonna be fine J, and we're here with you."


As the elevator opened Mr. Reynolds joined them and the look on his face sent shivers down his spine.

"Jaden, could I speak with you alone for a moment?" he said taking Jaden's arm.

Jaden's legs had turned to Jello and he was thankful for his father's strength. 

"What's wrong dad?" Jaden managed to squeak out when they had found an occupied corner.

"I don't mean to scare you, but we promised we'd tell you everything," he began, "and there was a problem during the surgery."

"What...what happened?"

Mr. Reynolds took a deep breath and Jaden suddenly saw something in his eyes that really frightened him. Was it the look of fear and uncertainty? The same look Jaden had been wearing for the last few day. He'd never seen his father show any weakness before and it chilled him to the bone.

"First of all they lost Aidan when they were operating, but...they were able to revive him quickly."

"You mean...he died?" Jaden asked, ready to collapse at any moment.

"Yes, but that's not the real problem. I'm told that sometimes happens to patients under anesthetic. The real problem is: the tumor was a bit bigger and more embedded than they'd first suspected and the operation was a bit more involved."

"But he's gonna be okay, right?"

"The doctors say he should make a full recovery, but...there may be some memory loss and some changes in his personality. With time they should go away, but I just wanted to prepare you for things, just in case."

"But he's okay...right? I mean he's not gonna die or be a vegetable or anything..." Jaden said shaking as if he were cold.

Mr. Reynolds threw his arms around his son and hugged him, but he realized he needed comforting as much as Jaden did.

"No, nothing like that, it just may take some time before we have our old Aidan back. Mom is with him now waiting for him to wake up. We'll know more then."

"Dad, can we go to the Chapel and pray?" Jaden said looking up at his father with tears in his eyes.

Though the Reynolds only attended church on special occasions they had brought up their boys to believe in a God, and most of all the power of prayer and the importance of love. The lessons they'd learned had served them well and the boys had always been fine and decent kids. When they had discovered their sexuality, both had been concerned how that fit in with those teachings, and sought their parents help.

As expected their parents had taken their questions seriously, and after a series of discussions, they had worked through their feelings. Love seemed to be the key issue, love was love, was love, no matter whether it was between two men or two women or one of each. Being gay or bi, was not an abomination in the eyes of God, even though some churches preached hatred and intolerance on the subject. The Bible was clear on one thing, all of us were commanded to love one another and not to hate.

"I think that would be fine, do your think your friends would like to join us?"

Jaden nodded, "I'll go get them."

The little chapel was located conveniently near the surgery wing and at the moment they were the only ones there. Though none of the teens attended Church regularly, they all had their own beliefs and feelings when it came to a higher power and prayer was not a stranger to any of them. As each silently thought their thoughts and prayed their prayers, the fear and uncertainty they had felt began to drift away. Once Jaden had filled them in on Jaden's condition they had been a somber bunch, but the chapel had offered them sanctuary for the moment. 

Afterwards they went back to the waiting room and Jaden called Jimmy and filled him in on Aidan's condition. As expected Jimmy was as upset as Jaden was, and wanted all the details. They talked for a long time and exchanged I love yous and Jaden promised to let him know if anything changed.

 Jeremy posted an update on Aidan's condition and asked for prayers and was immediately inundated with likes and comments.

"Wow, looks like the whole school follows you," Dee said looking over his shoulder.

"Just since we began posting the videos and stuff, but I know it's Aidan they're really crazy about."

"Oh, I don't know. I see a lot of girls and guys looking at you," Dee said grinning, "and I just laugh, cause I know you're all mine now."

"And you're all mine. When this is over we should all get together, J and A, and Isaac, and you and me and have some fun."

"Oh, what kind of fun?" she said suggestively.

"Not that kind of fun, I meant like a party or something, maybe go out for pizza or something."

"I knew what you meant and I think that's a great idea, but who knows how long till poor Aidan is ready to party."

"Soon...I just know. That kid is tough. I know everyone thinks he's soft or something and that J is the strong one, but I tell you this, I know how tough that kid can be. He'll beat this thing and be stronger than ever."

"I think you're right," Dee sighed.

They were interrupted by Mrs. Reynolds who looked tired but not nearly as upset as they'd expected.

"They're taking him to his room now. As soon as they get him situated we can visit him but only three at a time."

"Is he talking mom?"

Mrs. Reynolds nodded, "Yes, but he's still pretty groggy. The anesthetic hasn't completely worn off yet."

"Have you talked to the doctor any more?" Mr. Reynolds asked looking concerned.

"Yes, for a minute, but he seems to think there's nothing to worry about. They will be monitoring him closely for the next few days, and if we're lucky he should be going home by the first of next week."

"One of us will need to stay with him at all times, so we'll need to work that out."

"I'm taking some time off from work. It's a slow time and Arlene said to take as much time as I need, so you won't have to worry about that."

"No fair," he teased, "I wanted some time off too."

Mrs. Reynolds laughed, a rare thing for her the last few days, "Well, you can do that. I'd love your company."

By the time the nurse came to tell them Aidan was settled, they'd decided that Jaden and his parents would go first, and then the three teens could see him for a few minutes afterwards. 

As Jaden followed his parents to his brother's room he felt a knot growing in his stomach and felt ready to pass out. He was sorry he'd eaten earlier and feared his dinner might make a comeback at any moment. When he saw his brother he felt even more ill.

He was laying in bed propped up with a white bandage around his head, a breathing tube in his nose and of course an IV.  He was hooked to some kind of monitor that peeped regularly and In addition he had a catheter again and the bag had some yellowish liquid in it already. But the worst part was the look on Aidan's face. 

Along with his hollow eyes, he now had a blank expression and didn't seem to respond to them at all when they entered.

"Hey,'s it going?" Jaden said approaching the bed and taking his brother's hand in his.

"Okay," he said in a hoarse voice.

"Good, Jeremy and Dee are here with Isaac. They're gonna come see ya in a minute."

This time Aidan didn't respond although his eyes did seem to convey some unspoken message.

"Hey son," Mr. Reynolds said smiling and patting his son affectionately, "We just wanted you to know that we've talked to the doctors and everything went fine and you're going to make a full recovery."

Yeah, except you died on the operating table, Jaden thought bitterly.

"Okay," Aidan squeaked out, "Mom, can I have a drink?"

"I'll ring the nurse, but I think for now it will just be ice chips."

"Okay," Aidan said again. It seemed to be his favorite word now and it worried Jaden for some reason.

It was as if he couldn't command the language to express himself. Jaden hoped it was the lingering effects of the anesthetic and not something more sinister, but he was still worried.

"Everyone at school is praying for you and wishing you the best," Jaden said, "I expect your room will be filled with flowers by tomorrow," he teased.

"Okay," Aidan said looking into Jaden's eyes with a muddy sort of stare.

"Bro, are you sure you're okay. You're actin' kind of weird."

"Just tired," Aidan sighed.

The nurse arrived then and after hearing Aidan was thirsty she went off to get some ice chips. When she returned she offered to feed him the ice, but Jaden insisted on doing it instead.

"You're a good brother," the nurse said smiling, "and to think there are too such handsome boys in this city, I'm sure you're very popular with the girls.

"I'm bi, my brother is gay," Jaden said almost angrily, staring the nurse down as if to say...So now what you gonna do?

"Well, then you must be very popular with both," she said not missing a beat.

"Jaden..." Mr. Reynolds said in a warning voice.

"I'm sorry," Jaden said sincerely, "I...just...I'm just a little upset right now."

"I understand, no offense taken. For what's it's worth I happen to think everyone should be allowed to love whoever they want to without having to answer to anyone else."

"Thanks." Jaden said smiling.

When the nurse was gone Jaden turned his attention to his brother and spooned in a few ice chips. Aidan fell back and let them melt in his mouth as he continued to stare blankly at Jaden who's discomfort continued to grow.

Eventually Aidan said he'd had enough ice and they left him to allow the others to visit. Isaac decided at the last minute to wait till A was better to visit him and so Jaden went back in with Jeremy and Dee.

"Lookin' good," Jeremy said grinning as he patted Aidan's hand, "What a way to get out of goin' to school."

Aidan actually grinned, though he still looked a little spacey but when Dee came over and kissed him on the cheek he actually blushed.

"Hi," he said grinning, "Do I know you?"

The look of surprise on Dee's face was quickly replaced by one of love and compassion and taking his hand she simply said, "I'm one of your biggest fans."

"Oh, okay. I'm sorry...I'm sort of........." he began then seemed unable to finish. 

Jaden didn't like this at all. It was more than just the effects of the anesthetic and he knew it. Maybe this was part of the stuff the doctors had warned them about, short time memory loss or something.

"That's Dee," Jaden said softly, "Jeremy's girlfriend...our friend. She sits at our lunch table with us."

"Oh, okay...yeah...thanks for the kiss," Aidan said blushing again.

"I think we should probably go and let Aidan get some rest," Dee said then. 

"Oh yeah, okay. Hey Aidan, get well soon bro. We'll come see you again tomorrow if it's okay."

"Yeah, okay...I'd like that. Maybe I won't be foggy then."

"Yeah, I understand bro, it's no big deal. I mean you been through a lot and you deserve to be foggy," Jeremy laughed.

"Mmm...just need to sleep...." Aidan said closing his eyes.

"Would you guys send in my folks when you go out, oh, and tell Isaac thanks for coming and bringing you guys."

"We will," Dee said kissing Jaden on the cheek. "We'll see you at school tomorrow...okay?"

"Yeah, thanks again. You guys are the best."

When they were gone, Jaden took Aidan's hand in his and just held it as Aidan drifted off to sleep. When his parents arrived, they took one look at the two and smiled. They knew that Jaden was the best medicine in the world for Aidan and his dedication to his brother was never more evident than it was at that moment.

"He fell asleep," Jaden whispered.

"Rest is the best thing for him right now. Why don't you go home with dad and get some rest?" Mrs. Reynolds said hugging Jaden.

"Okay, but I'll be back tomorrow with the gang," he said allowing his mom to lead him out of the room while Mr. Reynolds stayed behind.

Once they were outside she hugged her son and then held him at arm's length, "I am so proud of you son. For taking care of your brother and being there for him."

"Mom, it's what brothers do. He'd do the same for me. Besides, it's like as long as he's sick, I'm sick too. I know it's hard for other people to understand, but we feel each other's feelings, and mom...I don't like what I'm feeling from him right now."

"Remember dear, he's been through a lot the last few days, that coupled with the surgery and the anesthetic...he's not going to be at his best. Just give him time. I bet by tomorrow we'll see a big change."

"I sure hope so. If anything changes you'll let us know...right?"

"Of course dear, don't worry though. He's resting and will probably sleep through the night."

Isaac, Jeremy and Dee walked down with Jaden and his dad and split up to go to their vehicles. As Jaden slid in beside his dad his exhaustion finally took over his body. His eyes closed almost immediately and he slept the all the way home. He was awakened by his father as they pulled into the driveway and when they were parked he unbuckled and stumbled inside.

"I'm going to bed dad," Jaden said giving his dad a hug, "I'm beat."

"Goodnight son, I'll see you in the morning. Pleasant dreams."

"I'll settle for no dreams tonight," Jaden said sighing.

Jaden stumbled into the bathroom he shared with his brother and peed and as he was washing his hands he suddenly saw Aidan's purple toothbrush in the holder above the sink. As he looked around there were other reminders of his twin and suddenly it was too much to bear. 

Sinking to the floor his back against the vanity he began to cry. He thought about all the times they'd shared the shower or stood side by side and peed. How they'd talked as they brushed their teeth and got ready for bed each night and it was just too much to bear.

"Oh A...please don't die...please come home to me. I promise I'll move back into our bedroom and never leave you again," he sobbed.

Sudden he looked up and saw his father standing in the doorway, "Son, I thought I heard someone in here. Come on let me put you to bed," he said pulling his son up off the floor and hugging him.

"I want to sleep in A's bed tonight," Jaden said wiping at his eyes, "I want to smell him. Does that sound weird?" he sobbed.

"No, not at all...I understand. I think that's just fine. His scent will be comforting for you and you need that right now."

"Thanks," Jaden said letting his father help him to Aidan's room. Jaden stripped off his shirt and sat down on the bed.

Kneeling his father pulled off Jaden's shoes and socks and gazed lovingly into his son's eyes, "This reminds me of when you were a little boy. I used to carry you guys to your bed and take off your shoes and socks for you. Sometimes I'd tickle your feet and make you laugh. You guys are growing up so fast," he sighed.

"You can tickle my feet if you want to," Jaden said grinning.

Mr. Reynolds smiled and ran a finger nail up the bottom of Jaden's foot causing him to flinch, but he didn't feel much like laughing.

"I guess it's just not the it?"

"No son, things change, but that's not always a bad thing. Look at all the wonderful things you have and do now that you're older."

"I guess...but sometimes I just wish I was a little kid again and didn't have to worry about things so much."

"Me too son, me too. Well, I guess we should try to get some sleep," he said rising.


"Yes son?"

"Would it be too...too weird if I ask you to sleep in here with me? There's lots of room."

"I don't think that's weird at all. I think both of us could use some company tonight. I'll go shower and get ready for bed and I'll see you in a bit."

Jaden was asleep when his dad slipped into bed beside him but he roused long enough tell him he loved him and to thank him for sleeping with him. His dad patted him and gave him a kiss on the forehead then settled down on his side of bed, but sleep did not come for some time.

Jaden fell back to sleep rather quickly as his dad lay there listening to his soft breathing and inhaled his teenage scent. He could smell Aidan as well, and it was both comforting and disturbing. To think that they'd almost lost one of the twins sent shivers up and down his spine. 

He and his wife had downplayed Aidan's death on the operating table, but they both knew how serious something like that was and it frightened them. In the semi-darkness of the room he could just make out his son's handsome face and his blond hair crowing his face. He was so proud of both his sons and loved them more than life itself. If anything ever happened to them he was sure he could not go on. But he hoped and prayed he's never have to find out. 

Their little family was perfect in his eyes and the boys sexual identity had never been an issue. Oh sure, he and his wife would like to have grandkids some day, but who was to say that might not still happen, even if both boys chose males as partners. There were surrogate moms and in a world where there was always plenty of orphaned kids, adoption was a real possibility. Mr. Reynolds knew he could love an adopted kid as easily as a biological one. He loved kids in general and he and his wife had even discussed adopting a couple of times, but it had just never happened. Maybe now was a time to revisit that discussion, maybe adopt a girl or one of each. The twins were growing up fast and it would be nice to have some kids around when they went off to college. It was with these pleasant thoughts filling his mind that he finally drifted off to sleep.

"Jaden, breakfast son," Mr. Reynolds said gently shaking his son. He had let him sleep while he fixed breakfast, but he had allowed plenty of time for them to enjoy it.

"Mmmm..okay, thanks dad...for letting me sleep in. I was really beat. I don't remember anything after you came to bed."

"You mumbled in your sleep a few times, but you didn't wake. I know cause I was awake most of the night," Mr. Reynolds chuckled.

"Did I keep you awake dad," Jaden said throwing back the covers, then realizing he had a bad case of morning wood he tried to hide it with his hands.

"No, just had a lot on my mind." then laughing he said, "I think you need to go take care of the tent in your undies. I'll see you downstairs. I hope you're hungry."

"Starved," Jaden said moving his hands and just letting nature be seen. He didn't even know why he had tried to cover himself to begin with, after all it was just his dad and he was the coolest adult he knew.

Breakfast was scrambled eggs, bacon, oatmeal, and toast. Jaden had milk while Mr. Reynolds had coffee and as they ate they talked about their plans for the day.

"Don't suppose I could skip school today?" Jaden said grinning.

"Nope, we both have things to do today. I need to earn some money and you need to learn something new," he chuckled.

"Okay, but...I wish I could be with A."

"He needs his rest and your mom is there, he'll be fine."

"I know, I'm not worried about him, I'm worried about me," Jaden joked.

"Besides your friends would miss you. By the way, when is your other half coming back to school?" he teased.

"Jimmy? Oh probably not till next week, hopefully Monday."

"Unless there's someone else I don't know about," Mr. Reynolds said looking amused.

"Oh, you know how it is. I'm so popular and all, but I guess Jimmy is my main man."

"You know, I'm very proud of you boys in the way you've handled your relationships. Most boys your age don't have the level of maturity that you boys do. I know when I was your age, most of my buddies were going through girlfriends like some guys go through underwear," he chuckled.

"Do  you think it's because girls are so weird?" Jaden laughed.

"Well, I might have chosen a different word, but they are more intense in some ways. They expect more and yet give so little," he chuckled.

"'Speaking of girls, Dee is pretty cool. I think her and Jeremy are in love already."

"Love is pretty fickle at that age, but I wish them the best. They do make a nice looking couple."

"Jer even told Dee about his leg right up front, but she already knew."

"His leg?"

"Oh, yeah...I forgot you and mom don't know. When he was 10 some lady backed over him and they had to remove his leg. He has two different prosthetic ones. One of em' is pretty cool, it's like aluminum and looks like something from T2."

"I would never have suspected, he just looks like a regular healthy teenager."

"Yeah, but he's sort of sensitive about his leg. He really didn't want anyone to know, cause he said he don't want people feeling sorry for him."

Jaden related the story of how Aidan had discovered Jeremy's spare leg and how Jeremy had shared his secret, expecting the worst and instead discovering it didn't matter at all to his real friends.

"Dee heard it from someone who heard it from a teacher, so she wasn't surprised, and of course she was totally cool with it. Since then most of the school knows and no one treats him any different."

"That's wonderful. Well, I'm going to go take a shower, just put you dishes in the sink when you're done. Want a ride to school today?"

"Naw, I think I'll take the bus. It gives me time to think."

"All right. See you in a bit."

Jaden finished his breakfast and loaded the dishwasher with his and his dad's dishes and started it to save his dad having to do it later. He dressed for school and grabbed his backpack and met his dad downstairs to say goodbye. 

As Mr. Reynolds drove away Jaden started for the bus stop, hoping there would be no surprises today.

After school Jaden rode the bus home and after a quick snack he did his homework and waited for his father to get off work. He had called Jimmy while he ate his snack and was pleased to hear that he was home and feeling much better. He seemed concerned about Aidan, of course they all were, but Jaden had nothing new to add to what they already knew.

When Mr. Reynolds arrived he greeted his son then excused himself to take a shower. While he showered Jaden called Jeremy's house and Isaac answered. He said he and Jeremy were going to pick up Dee and meet them at the hospital about 7, in time for visiting hours. He was just finishing his call when Mr. Reynolds appeared looking clean and refreshed.

"Ready for some dinner son?"

"Sure, can we go to the diner mom likes so much? I thought maybe we could get her one of those sandwiches she likes."

"I think that's an excellent idea. Grab your jacket and let's roll."

By the time they got to the hospital Jeremy and company had arrived and Jaden joined them while Mr. Reynolds took his wife her sandwich and to spell her for a while.

"Hey guys, thanks for coming. I know A will appreciate it. So who wants to go first?"

"I...would," Isaac said stepping forward, "I feel like I let him down not seeing him before, but I...I just didn't want to see him that way."

"It's fine, he was sort of out of it anyway. I'm sure he'll be much better today. How about you and I go see him? Then Jer and Dee can go when we get back?"

Everyone was cool with the arrangement and when Jaden and Isaac got to the room Mr. Reynolds was sitting in a chair by his bedside talking to his son quietly.

"Hey," Isaac said patting Aidan's hand, "You're lookin' good man. You bout' ready to blow this joint?"

"Yeah, it's really boring here. Nothing to do but sleep and watch old TV shows that I never heard of before."

"Well, we all miss ya' at school, so you need to quit loafing and get back as soon as you can."

Aidan closed his eyes tight and frowned and Mr. Reynolds was up and out of his chair and by his side in a heartbeat.

"You okay son?"

"Just...just got a...a sharp pain....ahhhhhhhhhhh....oh God...make it stop," he screeched grabbing his head in both hands.

"Jaden...go now, yell for a nurse," Mr. Reynolds cried as he tried to soothe his son.

In the hallway Jaden yelled at the top of his lungs and a Doctor who was lingering at the desk came running.

Dee and Jeremy heard their friend's call for help and jumped up but they knew there was nothing they could do and didn't want to get in the way.

Jaden and Isaac were sent out to the waiting room and Mrs. Reynolds, who was just coming out of the ladies room, saw them and rushed over to see what was going on.

"It's he started screaming that his head hurt and was holding it and begging God to make it stop...I'm so scared mom," he said hugging her.

"It's going to be okay son," she said kissing his hair, "right now I need you to be strong and stay with your friends. I need to go to your brother now. I promise I'll let you know what's going on as soon as I know anything."

Jaden nodded and wiped at his eyes. Isaac who had turned white as a sheet (well maybe tan) gathered Jaden into his strong arms and led him to a couch and pulled him down beside him. 

"Oh God, this is so awful," Jaden wailed, "Just when we think he's getting better, something else happens. I just want this be over with."

"It might be nothing. The doc is there, he'll know what to do," Isaac said soothingly, but the truth was he more upset than Jaden. The real reason he hadn't visited Aidan the day before was because he was terrible at handing this sort of thing.

Jeremy and Dee came over and joined them on the couch to offer their support. It was tight with all four of them on the couch, but the closeness was actually comforting.

"Mr. Reynolds came out about fifteen minutes later and the four jumped up to meet him."

"Is he okay Dad?"

"He's fine now, they gave him something for the pain. The doctor says it was probably just an irritated nerve. They're going to watch him closely tonight just to make sure, but they don't feel it was anything serious."

"But he was in a lot of pain," Isaac said winching, "that seemed pretty serious to me."

"The head has a lot of nerves. Think about how many times you're banging your head or had a headache that you thought was going to kill you. The Doctor says it probably felt worse than it was. And I'm sure it looked worse too. I know I was really scared at first."

"I don't know, I'm still worried. I guess I won't stop worrying till he's home and back to normal."

"Hopefully he can come home Monday, but it may be a while before he's a hundred percent himself."

"Can we see him again?"

"You can, but he's asleep. Whatever they gave him put him out pretty quick."

"I don't care, I want to see him before we go."

"Me too," Dee said grabbing Jeremy's arm, "come with me please."

"You know I will. I wanna see A too."

"How about I go get your mom then the three of you can go in."

Mrs. Reynolds looked tired and frazzled and ready to collapse, but when Jaden gave her a big hug she seemed to perk up some.

"Thanks for being there for A, I know he appreciates it and so do we, right dad?"

"Your mom is amazing. I don't know what we'd do without her," he said kissing her on the cheek.

"I don't know what I'd do without my boys either," she said smiling, " kids go see A, but don't expect much from him, he's sleeping soundly now."

When the three teens were inside Aidan's room they watched him sleeping peacefully and felt some better. He was beautiful as he lay there, his blond hair slight messy and crowning his cute face. He had a slight smile on his face and Jaden wondered what he was dreaming. 

Bending down he kissed his brother on the lips causing the smile to widen. "Get better bro, I love you and I need you to come home to me. I want us to sleep in the same room again...if you do."

"He looks good," Jeremy said softly grabbing his foot and rubbing it gently.

"He's so cute," Dee said giving him a kiss on the forehead.

"Whoa, slow down girlfriend," Jeremy teased.

"Oh, why's that. You know him better that way than I do," she teased.

"True dat," Jeremy laughed.

"You guys, he's not a piece of meat."

"Sorry, we know that. But if he was...he'd be prime rib," Jeremy chuckled.

"Fillet mignon," Jaden corrected him.

"Boys." It was Mr. Reynolds at the door, "Your mom and I are going to the cafeteria for some coffee. Will you be okay? If you need us call my cell."

"We're fine dad. Is Isaac okay?"

"He's a little upset right now, he could use a friend I think."

"I'll go," Jeremy said, "he's my bro. I'll talk to him. You guys keep A company."

When they were alone Dee looked at Jaden and smiled sadly, "I can't even imagine  how bad you must feel right now. It's got to be like seeing yourself laying there."

"Worse, I can actually feel what he feels sometimes. When his head was hurting, mine hurt a little too."

"So...what do you feel now that he's asleep?"

"Actually I just feel a calmness and peace. It's a good feeling for a change."

"That's good."

" is it working out with you and Jer? Are you having fun?"

"Yeah," she said blushing, "he's really sweet."

"You're blushing, is there some sexy stuff going on already?"

"Well...I'm still a virgin, know."

"Oh, yeah...I know. Hey, I was wondering, since you don't like secrets, does that mean you told Jer about me and Jimmy?"

"Sort of, but he was cool with it. He says that was then, this is now. Besides he told me that him and Aidan did some stuff."

"And I'm guessing you're cool with that..."

"Yes, very cool. It's like Jeremy says, that was then, this is now."

"So, does that mean you guys are exclusive now?"

"For now...yes. I mean we've never really discussed getting with anyone else, together, but I think that might happen at some point."

"That would be cool. All of us together...a real orgy," Jaden chuckled.

"We'll see. I think I'm going to go find Jeremy. Will you be okay alone?"

"Yeah, go ahead. I want to talk to A anyway."

Dee gave Jaden a knowing look then smiled and gave him a kiss on the cheek.

When he was alone with his twin Jaden sat in the chair by his bed and held his hand. Bringing it to his lips he kissed it softly and rubbed it against his face.

"Oh bro, I miss you so much. Please get well soon. I know this is harder on you than me, but I guess I'm just selfish or something. I promise when you get back everything is gonna be fine again. I won't ever let anything happen to you again and if you start acting weird are so gonna get ratted out.

Seriously though, we all miss you and want you to come home as soon as you can. I been thinking a lot about things since you've been in here, and if this music thing is that important to you, then I want to help you with it. I know I wasn't much help before and I really didn't have your back, but I promise now...I will. I love you bro and I'm here for matter what."

"Jaden, it's time to go," Mr. Reynolds said from the door. He's heard most of Jaden's speech to his brother and didn't want to interrupt him.

"Okay," he said standing and giving his brother a kiss on the lips, "see ya' tomorrow bro. Sleep good okay?"

After hugging his mom and telling his friends goodbye he followed his dad to the parking garage and climbed in beside him. He was tired and he hurt inside. It wasn't a physical pain, but it was still strong and worrying and it was slowly taking it's toll on him.

"It's gonna be okay son," Mr. Reynolds said as if reading his son's mind.

"I know, I just want A back home. I miss seeing him all the time."

"I know he misses you too. You boys have been through a lot together and you'll get through this."

"I guess," Jaden said yawning, "I'm beat. Maybe I'll actually sleep tonight."

"Well, if you need some company you know I'm there for you son."

"Thanks, we'll see. Right now I think I'll be okay."

"That's good," Mr. Reynolds said, then looking at his son with a serious look he said, "There's something you should know son. Don't worry, it's not about Aidan, it's about Isaac and Jeremy."

"What dad?" Jaden asked giving his dad a curious look.

"When Jeremy had his accident, Isaac took it pretty hard. He was only 12 or 13 at the time, and he and Jeremy were, and still are, very close. So you can imagine how he felt seeing his brother in the hospital knowing that he would lose his leg and all."

"I never really thought about that, neither of them ever mentioned that part of it to me."

"Well, Jeremy evidently opened up to Dee about it and Dee told  your mother and now I'm passing it on to you. In case you hadn't noticed Isaac was a little hesitant to visit Aidan. It wasn't because he doesn't care about you brother, he just has a fear of hospitals and sick people in general since Jeremy's accident. That's why he didn't visit Aidan last night."

"But he did tonight, and then all hell broke loose. I bet he's really freaked now."

"He did a good job of hiding his feelings, but yes...I think he was pretty upset. He may not be so keen on seeing Aidan as long as he's in the hospital, so just take it easy on him and don't push him, okay?"

"I won't. I don't blame him for being freaked out though. I'm pretty freaked out myself. When A gets home I hope I never see a hospital again."

Once they were  home they had a snack and talked then got ready for bed. Jaden was tempted to ask his dad to sleep with him again, but he didn't want to impose any more than he already had. He reasoned if he had a bad dream or started feeling alone he could just go crawl in bed with his dad. He smiled when he thought about all the times he and Aidan had done that until they finally figured out that they could comfort each other. That was when the fun first began. It started with cuddling and rubbing against one another then progressed to masturbation. Eventually they tried oral sex and finally anal sex and each new thing had brought them that much closer together.

As Jaden fell into bed he tried to remember the last time he and Aidan had been together that way and he frowned. With all the craziness going on they hadn't shared their bodies for some time and it made Jaden sad. He vowed that when Aidan was home and up for it, he would make up for lost time though and that made him smile.


The weekend finally came and Aidan had continued to improve. There were no more seizures or pain and the Doctors all agreed that Aidan could go home on Monday. Though he wouldn't be able to go back to school right way, he would be allowed to stand and sit for a few hours each day, but most of his time would be spent in bed.

Jaden spent most of his free time over the weekend moving back into his brother's room, and with his dad's help had moved the beds together so Jaden would be close by if Aidan needed him. Furthermore, Aidan would be sleeping on the side next to the wall with Jaden to block the other side, so there would be no danger of Aidan rolling out of bed, however unlikely that might be.

The TV and gaming system was set up for Aidan's convenience and everything was ready for his arrival on Monday. Mr. Reynolds had even installed a hand railing near the toilet and one in the tub, though they doubted it would be necessary, no one was taking any chances with Aidan's safety.

Sunday Jeremy and Dee came with Jaden and his dad to the hospital, but Isaac opted out saying he had a test to study for. Jaden had yet to breach the subject of Isaac's feelings about hospitals and sick people, but he planned on talking to Jeremy about it the first chance he got.

Aidan was in high spirits as he greeted his brother and friends and he looked almost back to normal. All his tubes and wiring had been removed and he had been eating regular food for a few days. His only complaint the last few days was of boredom and he was more than ready to come  home.

When they left that evening Jaden rode up front with his dad and the two love birds sat in the back seat, but after they dropped Dee off Jaden moved back to sit with his friend. This was the opportunity Jaden had been waiting for to have a talk with his friend about Isaac.

"So...I guess Isaac sort of got weirded out when Aidan had his attack or whatever?"

"Yeah, Isaac is a strong person, but not around sick people and hospitals. When I got hurt...well, he took it pretty hard. He even blamed himself at first, but we all knew that was silly. We went to different schools and never rode together. I guess I never knew how much he loved me or cared about me till that day I got hurt. He was there for me every minute they'd let him, but mom and dad said when he got home he pretty much fell apart each time."

"I can totally relate to that. I sort of feel the same way, but I have all of you to help me through it and I'm doing okay. I'll just be glad when A gets home. I wanted to throw a party, but mom and dad said no, that he didn't need that much excitement that soon. may have to wait a while, but eventually we are going to celebrate."

"Well, count us in when it's party time."

Monday was torture for Jaden. He'd wanted to stay home and go with them to get Aidan, but his folks had made him go to school anyway. Since Aidan wasn't going to be released till sometime after noon, they assured Jaden that he wouldn't miss much, and when he got home from school his brother would be waiting.

At lunch Jaden picked at his food and talked non-stop about what he was going to do with Aidan to keep him entertained and comfortable while he recuperated. Jimmy had come back to school that morning and was coming home with him after school to see Aidan. Jimmy teased that Aidan could watch him and Jaden making out and getting reacquainted and Jaden laughed.

"I don't know, A's probably pretty horny by now, he might want to get in on the action."

"Is that allowed? I mean with his surgery and all?"

"Well, we could do all the work and just let him lie there," Jaden joked.

"Umm kay, sounds good," Jimmy said taking him seriously.

"We'll see. Who knows, he may sleep all day. Depends on what kind of meds they put him on."

"How long till he can come back to school?" Dee asked.

"The Doc says maybe three weeks, but it could be sooner if things go okay."

" he going to get to make up his work while he's out?"

"Yeah, absolutely, he's going to take classes online till he gets back. It's pretty cool actually. He can lay in bed and go to school," Jaden joked.

"Let's hope it's not a two way video or anything," Jimmy laughed, "or the teacher may get turned on."

"Yeah, especially if A wears one of those skimpy hospital gowns," Jeremy laughed.

The day passed slowly and by the time Jaden got home his stomach was all tied up in knots. Would he find Aidan there or would there have been some catch? He hadn't heard from his folks all day so he supposed everything was okay, but lately he'd begun to worry about every little thing.

"I'm home," he said bursting through the door and rushing upstairs.

The bedroom door was open and Jaden's heart jumped for joy as he saw his twin sitting up in bed, and he laughed when he saw his brother.

"'re home," he said going to his twin and hugging him fiercely, "I've missed you sooo much."

"I missed you too," he said kissing his brother on the lips, "Hey, who said you could move back into my room?" he teased.

Jaden looked stricken at first. He knew they'd talked about it, but had Aidan forgotten, then he saw the smile on his brother's face and he relaxed.

"Butt hole, you had me for a minute. I'm not letting you out of my sight till you're back to normal."

"Oh, so I'm abnormal now?" Aidan teased.

"Bad choice of word, until you're well. God Bro, you don't know scared we've all been. I don't ever want to have to go through anything like this again."

"I guess I was pretty inconsiderate," he mocked, "next time I'll be more careful."

"Okay, okay...I get it. It's not about's about  you, but I just love you so much..." Jaden said as a few tears leaked from his eyes.

"'s okay, I was  just bustin' your balls. I know it was rough on you. I was out most of the time and really didn't know what was going on. It must've been awful seeing me like that."

"It was pretty scary. If I could've traded places with you I would have."

"I know, but I'm home now and pretty soon I'll be going back to school and we'll forget all about this."

"Well, the sooner the better, scoot over Bro, I wanna snuggle," Jaden said laying beside his brother.

"I've missed this," Aidan said smiling.

Mrs. Reynolds appeared at the doorway a few minutes later and smiled, "Well, I see my two pups are bonding again."

"Hi mom, gotta snack for me?" Jaden said grinning.

"Sure, are you hungry Aidan?"

"A little, whatever you have for J is fine with me."

"Well, you boys just relax. I'll bring your snack to you," she said smiling.

She returned a few minutes later with bottles of Powerade and a plate of fresh bakes cookies. 

"Need anything else boys?"

"Naw, thanks mom," they echoed and then giggled.

"I'll be in my room taking a quick nap if you need me."

"We'll be fine mom, thanks," Jaden said munching on a cookie.

"I feel sorry for mom," Aidan said when she was gone, "she spent all the time with me at the hospital and she must be tired."

"Yeah, she's the best. Dad did a lot too though. I know he doesn't always show it, but this thing was hard for him too."

"I know, and you must've been going crazy wondering if I was gonna die or if I'd be a veg."

"Yeah, you said, it's all over with now. We're probably stronger cause of it and closer. Which reminds me...I want to apologize for not realizing you needed help and for being such a butthole."

"You weren't a butthole, I was, but it wasn't my fault either. It was the brain tumor. I didn't have any control over it and there was no way you could know what was going on. So don't beat yourself up over it. I'm sorry for the things I did and for forcing you to move out and all, but now you're back now and everything will be fine."

"So, when do you start your online classes?" Jaden said changing the subject.

"Tomorrow," Aidan sighed, "but it will be pretty cool and won't take up too much time. I'll have plenty of time to watch TV and play video games."

"And jerk it," Jaden laughed.

"Oh no, that's way too strenuous. I'll expect you to take care of that for me," Aidan laughed.

"Sounds good to me, how you feelin' right now?"

"It's been a week since I got off, you tell me," he said giving Jaden a leering smile.

"Hmmm...hold on, be right back."

Jaden crept down to his folks room and peeked in the open doorway to see his mother sound asleep and when he returned he closed the door behind him and latched it. Then closing and latching the bathroom door he returned to the bed to find Aidan laying naked atop the covers.

"Wow, you are ready...aren't you?" Jaden laughed.

"It won't take long..."

"Too bad, I was hoping for an hour of hot sweaty sex."

"Well...I can come twice I guess. Come on, get naked and let's get at before mom wakes  up or dad gets home."

"Yeah, wouldn't want to have them banging on the door while we're banging on each other," Jaden joked.

"Please, no banging. Take it easy, I'm delicate," Aidan teased.

"Yeah, well...I'll do all the work."

"How bout a 69?"

"Works for me, sorry if I'm a little sticky down there. I been thinking about this all day."

"Sticky is good, I'm leaking like mad myself," Aidan said as they moved into position. 

Soon they were lost in each other's body, rubbing, touching, licking and sucking as they moaned softly. It felt wonderful to be together this way again, and soon the feelings were boiling up as they headed toward what they knew would be an unforgettable orgasm.

Suddenly Aidan cried out and began to unload into Jaden's eager mouth and Jaden wasn't far behind. When they were sated and after a quick cleanup, they dressed and Jaden unlatched both doors and climbed back into bed with his brother.

"That was nice," Aidan sighed, "I've missed that."

"Tonight we'll do some more stuff...if you want."

"You know I do. I think I'd like to feel you inside me."

"Okay, and I'll ride you so you won't have to do any work," Jaden said grinning.

They were interrupted by a knock on the door, "Come in," Jaden said, and was surprised to see his dad poke his head in.

"You boys decent?" he teased.

"We are now," Jaden laughed, "Hi dad, get off early?"

"I couldn't keep my mind on work, I had to come see how my boys were doing. How you feeling Aidan?"

"Great now that I'm home."

"That's good. I see your mom is sleeping. I think we'll just get pizza for dinner, how does that sound?"

"Great, pizza on a Monday, that's my kind of dinner," Jaden said enthusiastically.

"Sounds good to me," Aidan said happily, "especially after the hospital food. I thought cafeteria food at school was bad..."

"Yes, hospitals aren't known for their gourmet food," Mr. Reynolds laughed, "but it is nutritional..if you can choke it down."

"Well, I'll leave you boys to visit. I think I'm going to go lay down by your mom for a while."

" gonna play the quiet game in bed?" Jaden giggled.

"Jaden!" Mr. Reynolds said trying to suppress a smile, "What happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom."

The twins were laughing as their dad headed off to the bedroom and his wife and it seemed things were finally back to normal.


Aidan returned to school two weeks later and was greeted by a crowd of friends and well wishers and spent much of his day telling his story. He didn't mind the notoriety and in fact basked in it. Just as his videos had brought him attention, his brain tumor and hospital stay had propelled him into the limelight again.

At lunch several newcomers showed up at their table and after introductions were made the conversation turned to Aidan once more. However, he was getting tired of telling the same story over and over and decided to pull the new kids into the conversation and find out a bit about them.

One of the boys was a cute red-haired boy named Zak. His skin was not as white as most gingers though he did have a scattering of freckles across his nose. His emerald green eyes were captivating and he was a cute boy all around. His body was well defined and he was a little tall for his age, but he didn't seem as awkward as most boys with these characteristics.

"So Zak, did you just move here?" Dee asked once Aidan got things going in that direction.

"No...I been around. I guess you guys just never noticed me," he said shrugging.

"I think I've seen you before," Jaden offered, "in the halls maybe..."

"Probably, but I'm pretty forgettable," he said sounding sad.

"Why do you say that?" Aidan said reaching out to the boy. For some reason he felt an incredible attraction to this boy and it was a bit overwhelming.

Zak shrugged, "Dunno, just am. No one really seems to notice me most of the time."

"Well, if you want to join our table, you'll get noticed plenty," Dee offered, "When I first came here, my life was miserable till I found these guys. Now...I gotta cool boyfriend and lots of cool friends," she said squeezing Jeremy's hand.

"I heard some kids talking...about you..." he said looking at Aidan and blushing, "and how you helped other kids and and your brother and friends, so...I thought I'd come see what it was like."

"Well, I hope you'll stick with  us," Aidan said warmly, "You seem like a cool guy."

"Yeah, and you're cute," Dee said grinning.

Zak blushed bright red, "Naw...I'm not."

"Yes, you are," Aidan said then blushed himself, "I mean...I don't mean to embarrass you, but you are very cute...right J?"

"Absolutely, if I didn't have a boyfriend I'd be tryin' to figure out if you liked boys or girls," he laughed, then taking Jimmy's hand he leaned in and put his head on Jimmy's shoulder to show Zak just who he was talking about.

" guys are...are boyfriends?" Zak asked looking down at his plate.

"Yeah, a few of us are gay or that cool with ya'?" Jaden said shrugging.

"Oh..sure, absolutely. That's cool., I'm not really sure what I am," he confessed, "I don't really have a lot of experience either way."

"Well, this is a good place to figure things out. We don't judge anyone and between all of us we have a lot of answers to the questions you might have," Aidan said smiling.

"Thanks, you guys seems nice. If it's okay I guess I'll come back tomorrow."

"Absolutely, right gang?" Jaden said enthusiastically and everyone agreed.

The other newcomer was a girl named Ann and she hardly spoke the whole time despite Dee and the others trying to pull her into the conversation. She never returned after that day and the gang decided she might have not been as cool with their sexuality as most kids were.

That evening at home Aidan piled down on his bed and closed his eyes.

"You okay bro?"

"Fine, just tired. I forgot how tiring school was."

"Grab a nap if you want. I'll go downstairs and let you rest."

"Naw, it's okay. I'm hungry anyway. I think I'll change and go grab a snack, you with me?"

"Sure, so what did you think of the new kid, Zak?" Jaden asked as they started undressing.

"I know it sounds crazy J, but I felt like I'd known him forever and that we had a real connection."

"Do you like him, like him, or just like him?"

"I don't know. I mean I'm not saying I love him or anything, but if he's willing I'd like to get to know him better."

"Oh, I think he's willing. He kept sneaking little peeks at you all during lunch."

"Really?" Aidan said slipping on a favorite worn tee shirt.

"Yeah, he is sort of cute. Why don't you invite him over sometime this week and see what happens?"

"I might, but I think I'll see if he even shows up again tomorrow."

Zak did show up the next day, and the next, and by Friday he seemed to have melded into the group just fine. He still didn't say much, but he answered any questions thrown his way and seemed to enjoy the lively conversation at the table. He seemed especially interested in the two couples, Dee and Jeremy, and Jaden and Jimmy, but a good deal of his time was spent watching Aidan and smiling at him.

"He's got a crush on you," Jaden informed his brother Thursday evening on the ride home.

"No way. You sure?" Aidan said smiling.

"Yeah, trust me. I know that look."

"Well, I've decided to take your advice. Tomorrow I'm going to invite him over Saturday."

"Good idea, I'll be at Jimmy's so you two will have the place to yourself."

"Who are you boys talking about?" Mrs. Reynolds said checking them out in the rear view mirror.

"Oh, just a new boy that A likes," Jaden giggled, "his name is Zak and he's a ginger."

"Oh, well...when do I get to meet this boy?"

"Maybe Saturday. I was thinking of inviting him over if it's okay."

"That's fine dear, just don't do anything too strenuous. Some video games maybe or a movie."

Jaden made a rude gesture poking a finger through two circled fingers causing both of them to giggle, but their mom ignored them.

"Do you know where this boy lives?"

"No, not really. I guess I'll find out tomorrow. I know he rides the bus, but I don't know which one."

"Well, if his mother needs to talk to me just give him my number."

At home they had their snack and started on their homework without being told. Afterwards Jaden called Jimmy, and Aidan called Jeremy's house and Isaac answered.

"Hey, how's it going A? Brain all better?" he teased.

"What brain? The zombies ate it," Aidan giggled.

"I bet it was tasty. What's up bro?"

"Oh, well..I was hoping to talk to Jer about a new video I been thinking about."

"Great, I was wondering when you'd get back to it. What did you have in mind...?"

They talked about the video for a long time then somehow the subject of Zak came up. 

"He's that new kid Jeremy's been talking about...the ginger?"

"Is ginger an insult, like the N word?" Aidan wondered aloud.

"I guess it's not nice to label people," Isaac said thoughtfully, "so from now on I'll say red-haired...okay?"

"Yeah, or just Zak. He's really cool Isaac. I'm going to ask him over Saturday and try to get to know him better."

"Oh, as in get in his pants know him better?" Isaac teased.

"No, not that...not yet anyway," Aidan giggled.

"You really like this dude, don't ya'?"

"Well, let's just say that there's something about him that I'm attracted to and I think he's attracted to me too."

"That's so cool. This might be just what you need. I know the thing with your old bf was tough, but it's time to move on and find someone new."

"I'm over John," Aidan said, but he wasn't sure that was exactly true, "but I don't know if I'm ready to get into another relationship yet. I just want to be friends with Zak and take it slow."

"Slow is good, but don't be afraid to go with your feelings. You have good instincts and you're smart. You'll know if it's right."

"I guess, well...I should go. Tell lover boy I called," Aidan chuckled, "and tell him I'll see him tomorrow at school."

At lunch the next day Aidan got Zak aside and ask him about coming over the next day. He was surprised to see a look of panic on the boy's face and his answer was not what Aidan  had suspected.

"I can't. I'm sorry...but I just can't. I don't have a way to get to your house and anyway my mom would probably say no."

"We could come get you and your mom could call my mom," Aidan suggested, "and my mom could take you home whenever you wanted."

Zak tried to think of something to say that wouldn't reveal the real problem, that he didn't want Aidan to see the run-down apartments he lived in or for him to meet his family. He was ashamed of them and that was one reason he didn't have any friends at school, at least not until now.

"I just can't. I'm sorry, but thanks for asking," Zak muttered, "I gotta go...I need to use the bathroom before class starts..." he said hurrying away and leaving Aidan to stare after him feeling sad and confused.

"Something is wrong," Aidan said on the way home that evening, "he acted like he was terrified that I asked him to come over."

"Weird, maybe he has like really strict folks that don't allow him to have friends or visit anyone."

"I don't know, but I felt really bad for him. He seemed embarrassed or something. I wonder if we could find out where he lives without him knowing it?"

"Well, there's always Google," Jaden said making a funny face, "Do you know his last name?"

"Yeah, it's Brown."

"Well, we'll give it a try anyway. Who knows what we'll find out."

There were five Zak Browns in the online phone book, but none of them was their Zak Brown, and even if Zak had been a Jr. none of these Zak Browns had a son named after them. They were just about to give up when suddenly Jaden remembered something.

"Hey, Dee works in the office sometimes, suppose she could find out Zak's address for us?"

"I don't know, we could ask her. I think she has access to the computer and I'm sure all that stuff is in the data base."

"Then we'll ask her. The worst thing she can say is no."

"No, absolutely not," Dee said firmly, "I will not risk my job or being expelled by doing your dirty work. Why don't you just ask Zak where he lives? If he won't tell you, you can always figure out which bus he rides and at least you'll know approximately where he lives."

"Not a bad idea. Sorry for asking you to help us though. I sure don't want you getting into trouble."

"It's okay, you boys never think things out. You just think about what you want and what it takes to get it and not the consequences."

"Wow, that's pretty judgmental," Jaden said swooning, "that really hurts."

"Just telling you how it is."

"Jeremy is she always this mean?" Jaden asked pretending to lick his wounds.

"Yeah, she keeps me in line, but I don't mind," he said kissing her hand.

"Ewww...gross, lovey dovey stuff with girls," Jaden teased.

"I seem to remember you doing some lovey dovey stuff with this girl," Jeremy reminded him.

"OH, well, that was an experiment."

"And...?" Dee said looking angry.

"It was a successful one. Very nice indeed," Jaden said grinning.

"That's better. You know what? Why don't you let me talk to Zak. He might open up to me since he's not crushing on me," Dee suggested.

"Why does everyone think Zak is crushing on me?"

"Cause he is doofus," Jaden scolded.

"Yeah, he definitely is," Jeremy added.

"It's obvious to us cause we get to watch you both. I think it's cute the way you look at each other and if I can do anything to get you two together then I'll be glad to."

"Well, your best then."

The weekend passed slowly for Aidan. Jaden was at Jimmy's Friday night and most of Saturday, and when he got home the two enjoyed family night with their folks. They had take-out Chinese and popcorn and sodas later and had a good time.

At bedtime Jaden scooted in beside his brother and they talked quietly before engaging in sex play. Aidan was strong enough by then to do his own fucking and they took turns before falling down in a heap and snuggling up to go to sleep. They awoke early the next morning and had sex again, then got up and peed and washed up and slipped their underwear back on before going to their separate beds and sleeping a bit more.

Dee called Sunday afternoon as Aidan was working on a new video in the room he shared with his brother.

"What's up girlfriend?" Aidan teased.

"I found out some very interesting things about Zak, but not from him, from the girl that sat with us that day he joined us....Ann."

"What does she have to do with this?"

"Ann lives in the same apartments as Zak. She said the two of them were sort of friends, but not close, and he suggested they come to our table to try to keep the bullies away and maybe make some new friends."

"So why didn't she come back?"

"She was uncomfortable with the gay stuff I guess. She said she doesn't have anything against gays, but that she just doesn't feel like she fit in."

"That's silly, we don't talk about gay stuff all the time. You should invite her back."

"I did, but in the meantime, I found out what you wanted to know."

"Okay, is it bad or good, or what?"

"I think he thinks it's bad. See he lives in these low-income apartments over on Berry Street and I think he's sort of ashamed cause he mom is on Welfare or something and they don't have much money."

"That's awful, but it doesn't matter to me. I'd like him no matter what," Aidan said feeling bad for his new friend and for himself.

"I know that, and I plan on telling him that when I see him. Meantime just be nice to him and don't worry. I think I can convince him to come around."

"I hope so. I guess that's why he was so upset about my mom coming to get him. Maybe he could just ride home with us after school sometime...oh, but then how would he get home?" Aidan mused.

"We'll figure something out, don't worry. So how's your day going?"

They talked for another fifteen minutes then Aidan went back to his video, but his heart just wasn't in it at the moment. He wanted to talk to someone about Zak, and though he knew Jaden would  understand and  be on his side, what he really needed was someone who could shed a different light on things.

"Mom, dad...can I talk to you for a minute?"

"Of course dear, have a seat. What's on your mind?"

"Well, I have this new friend...." Aidan spelled out the whole situation as his parents listened carefully, nodding and digesting what he had to say, and when he got to the end they paused a moment before replying.

"Well, first of all, I feel sad for this boy," Mrs. Reynolds said patting her son's hand, "Unfortunately this is something that is more common than you might think. Of course a child has no control over his parents financial situation, but that doesn't stop them from feeling bad about things. I remember when I was growing up, there was this one girl in my class who was always dressed rather shabbily and was the brunt of a lot of bullying. Then one day she didn't show up for class and a few days later we learned that she and her family had been evicted from their home and were living on the street."

"What happened to them?" Aidan asked with a serious look.

"Well, once the school learned what had happened, a few of the parents and the PTA go together and had a fund drive and they found the family a place to stay and someone even offered the dad a job. She came back to school a week or so later and she was wearing new clothes and looked like a new person. We became friends after that and to this day we stay in touch.

I guess what I'm trying to say is this, sometimes a friend can make all the difference in the world to someone who is struggling with their home life, regardless of what that problem is. If this boy really likes you and you like him, his home life or his financial status should not be an issue."

"I agree," Mr. Reynolds said, "I had a buddy in high school who's family was dirt poor, but me and my buddies never treated him any different. We used to pool our money to make sure he was included in all our activities and when he graduated he got a scholarship to Law School and today he's a big shot lawyer."

"But how can I help Zak without hurting his pride or making him feel bad?"

"That's a good question son. It shows that you can empathize with his situation and that you care about his feelings. All I can say is this, if he knows you care about him he is more likely to open up to you and let you help him. Just make sure you treat him as you treat your other friends and don't make him feel like he's being singled out for any reason."

"So what can I do about this situation with him not wanting to come over cause he doesn't want me to see where he lives?"

"That's a good question, let us think about it. Meanwhile let us know what Dee finds out and maybe you could talk to him as well."

"Yeah, that sounds good. Thanks for talking to me. It helps a lot."

"Thank you for trusting us enough to talk to us. I know some kids don't have that kind of relationship with their parents."

"Yeah, well...that's cause they don't have such cool rents," Aidan said hugging both of them.

On Monday Aidan made it a point to hunt down Zak at his locker and walk with him.

"How was your weekend?" Aidan said smiling.

"Okay I guess," Zak muttered, even though it had been rather boring.

"Mine was okay too, kind of lonely. My brother was gone most of the time, but I did make time to work on a new video."

"Umm...yeah, I heard about those, but I've never seen any of em'."

Aidan assumed that meant Zak didn't have access to the internet and he knew he didn't have a phone of his own.

"Well, maybe sometime I could show you some of them. Right now I'm just trying to get back into the swing of things, after being in the hospital and all."

"Yeah, I heard about that. So you had a brain tumor or something...right?"

Aidan told Zak about all that had happened and he listened with interest. Everything about Aidan was interesting to him and he found himself getting more attached by the moment. But he knew he couldn't let himself get too attached, because they were from two different worlds, and he was sure Aidan could never like a poor kid from a bad family.

"I'll see ya at lunch," Aidan said as they parted a short time later, "enjoy your classes," he laughed.

Zak rolled his lovely green eyes and laughed, "You too."

At lunch Aidan was concerned when Zak didn't show up right away, but eventually he came in followed by Jeremy and Dee. He wondered if Dee had found time to talk to him yet, but decided not to worry about it for the time being and just be as friendly as possible to Zak.

"Hi you guys," Aidan said as they sat down.

"Hi," Zak said blushing as he gave Aidan a shy look.

"What are you eating?" Aidan said staring at Zak's tray.

"I don't know, some kind of nuggets. Might he chicken, might be rat for all I know," Zak said in a rare show of humor.

Aidan laughed, "I got an extra sandwich if you want it," he said opening his lunch bag.

"Naw, this will be okay," Zak said dipping a nugget in ketchup, "Actually not bad."

"Did you guys hear about the dance next Saturday night?" Dee said excitedly.

"Dance? Nope, where is it?" Jaden asked looking interested.

"It's off campus, so even gay couples can attend."

"Woo hoo, count us in," Jimmy whooped.

"You guys mean you'd go together and dance or something?" Zak asked with surprise.

"Sure, we're not ashamed of who we are?" Jaden said looking straight into Zak's eyes.

"That's, but I'd never have that kind of nerve...I mean, if I"

"You never know till you been there," Jaden said smiling, "there was a time when I wouldn't have been so bold, but a lot has changed here at school. We have the GSA now and the safe table and most of the kids here are very cool about things. We don't tolerate bullying or abuse of any kind and it makes the teachers jobs a lot easier so they're behind us a hundred percent."

"I don't know, I don't think everyone is as cool as you think," Zak mumbled.

"Someone bothering you?" Dee said before anyone else could.

Zak shrugged, "Naw, not really," he muttered.

"If there was, you'd tell us..right?" Aidan said looking serious, "That's what we're here for, to help kids who are being bullied or taunted."

"I know, thanks. Just being here is helping. I just don't want to get into it right now, okay?"

"Sure, we get it, but I'll tell you right now if I see or hear about anyone messing with you, I'll take care of it personally," Jaden growled.

"Yeah, me too," Aidan added and the others voiced their approval as well.

"Thanks guys."

After lunch Aidan noticed that Dee was tagging along behind Zak and leaving Jeremy behind. 

"What's going on with her?" Jimmy asked.

"She's just going to talk him about some stuff, I'll fill you in later," Jaden said to his bf.

"Yeah, she told me all about it," Jeremy said nodding, "If anyone can get to him, Dee can."

"I hope so," Aidan sighed, "I really hope so."

Later after school Aidan was standing at his locker when Zak approached him from behind.

"Why did you send Dee to talk to me?" he asked angrily, his face bright red.

"Whoa, calm down. I'm sorry. I just wanted to help, that's all. I really want us to be friends and I was hoping you would talk to her and tell her what the problem was."

"You wanna know what the problem is? You really want to know? I'll tell you what the problem is..." he said practically foaming at the mouth. 

A few kids had stopped to stare and Aidan knew he had to get Zak out of there before he said something he'd regret later.

"Come on, let's get out of here. We can talk somewhere more private, okay?"

Zak knew Aidan was right, and his anger was slowly slipping away. He knew he didn't want anyone else to hear what he was about to say to Aidan, and so he allowed himself to be lead outside to a quiet spot beside the school.

"Zak, I want you to know this before you say anything else. I like you a lot, I'm not sure if you like me or not, but I think you do. I don't know if you like me the same way I like you, but that's something we can figure out as we go along. But first you gotta trust me and talk to me. I don't care about where you live or what happens at home, all I care about is you and getting to know you better."

"You might not feel that way once you know everything about me," Zak sighed. His adrenaline rush was gone and had been replaced by a feeling of hopelessness and despair.

"Short of you being a serial killer or a drug lord, I can't think of much that would bother me, and I might even be okay with that as long as I wasn't a victim," Aidan said grinning.

The grin was contagious and despite his feelings Zak felt his lips curling up into a smile.

"I guess I don't have any choice, do I? Dee already told you part of it...where I live."

"And...that doesn't make any difference to me. You don't have any more control over that than I do over where I live or who my folks are. We're just kids and we don't get to make those kind of decisions."

"That's fine for you, you got rich folks and a nice house and plenty to eat and nice clothes...."

Aidan felt tears sting his eyes, and for a moment he couldn't speak, but when he did it was in a soft and soothing voice.

"I know I'm lucky, but I don't flaunt what I have and I share with my friends. I try to help other kids and my folks are great people who do a lot to help other people. My dad got Jimmy's mom a job and we helped them when his dad got sent to prison. You can't hold it against me that I live in a nice house and have good parents and stuff. In a way you're the one who's being prejudiced, not me. I would never shun someone because of their situation."

"Maybe, but how do I know you're not just feeling sorry for me?"

"Because I liked you before I found out anything about you. Remember I asked you to come over before I knew why you felt like you couldn't. Dude, trust me...I want to be your friend and I don't care about your family or where you live. My family doesn't care, my friends don't care, and you shouldn't either."

"I don't know...I just don't want to cause anyone any trouble."

"How would that be causing trouble?"

"I don't know...let me think about it okay?"

"Sure, take all the time you want. I wish we could stay in touch somehow though."

"I don't have a cell phone, but we have a regular phone at home."

"That would work, here's my number," Jaden said ripping a piece of paper out of his notebook and jotting his number down, "call me any time you want. That's my cell and I keep it with me all the time."

"Must be nice," Zak muttered.

"What bus do you ride?"

"What? Oh shit...I probably missed my I'm gonna have to walk home."

"No you don't. Come with me, my mom will take you home. She's picking me and Jaden up in a bit."

"I...I don't know."

"Relax, this will give you a chance to meet my mom and see how cool she is."

"I's that or walk 3 miles."

"Hey, there you guys are," Jaden called to them as he approached.

"Sorry, we needed to talk. Is mom here yet?"

"Yeah, she just texted me. What's up?"

"We need to give Zak a ride, come on."

Jaden just shrugged and followed his brother with Zak bringing up the rear. When they arrived at his mom's van, Aidan opened the front door and spoke to his mother for a moment then opened the sliding door and ushered Zak inside. Jaden took the front seat next to his mom and after everyone was buckled up Mrs. Reynolds turned to ask Zak for directions.

"My apartment in on Berry Street, ummm...I think they're called Pine Wood or something like that."

"Berry, and what side street?"

"I'm not sure, there's a 7-11 on the corner though, you can just drop me off there."

Mrs. Reynolds remembered what Aidan had said about the boy being embarrassed about where he lived and didn't ask any more questions. 

Zak was quiet all the way there, speaking only when spoken to, but when they got near the 7-11 he became animated. 

"That's it, up on the right. You can just let me off there. I want to get a Big Gulp anyway," he said hoping Mrs. Reynolds wouldn't insist on taking him all the way home.

He was relieved when she pulled into the parking lot of the 7-11 which was packed even at that time of day, many of the customers looking a bit unsavory.

"Thanks for the ride ma'am," Zak said as he followed Aidan out. 

"You're welcome Zak, it was nice to meet you."

"You too. Well, I guess I'll see you tomorrow, thanks for the ride and all," the last part being said to Aidan.

"Hey, you're welcome. You think about what I said and call me, okay?"

"Okay, I will."

"Great well, see ya'."

As they drove away Mrs. Reynolds voiced her opinion, "He seems like a nice boy. I'm glad you've made friends with him boys. He looks like someone who could use a good friend or two."

"Heck he already has about six," Aidan said grinning, "anyone who sits at our table has our friendship."

"Just one more reason I'm proud of you boys...all of you, Jimmy and Jeremy and Dee and all the others."

"Think he'll come over now?" Jaden asked.

"Well, he's gonna think about it. Maybe he'd feel better if we picked him up at the 7-11...if he decides to come."

"That might work," Mrs. Reynolds said grinning, "he might be more comfortable with that. Whatever works for you boys is fine."

"Well, it may take some work, but I think we're on the right track," Aidan said sighing, "At least he didn't beat me up for sending Dee to talk to him," he added laughing, "Now I just gotta earn his trust."

End chapter 21

Next: Aidan's new BF.

I have updated my story list if you see any missing please let me know.

Other stories by Kewl Dad

* Denotes Series, rest are short stories

  1. A Christmas for Joey

  2. A Christmas With Nick

  3. Accidental Dad*

  4. Adolescent

  5. Alex and Aidan*

  6. Andy Tastes Like Candy

  7. At the Dike*

  8. Black Cock

  9. Boy Glory Hole

  10. Bullied

  11. Christmas Boy

  12. CL Cock Sucker

  13. Cory*

  14. Corey's Scent

  15. Cody's Christmas Wish

  16. Dirt Bikes and Blowjobs

  17. DMV Boy

  18. Dougie's Story #Part 3 of a series

  19. The Family*

  20. The Ginger and the Chub

  21. Hair Salon Boys

  22. I Heart You

  23. Little Brother's Feet*

  24. Lost in Fear*

  25. Mars

  26. McChicken

  27. My Best Friend's Dad *Related story to My Son's Best Friends

  28. My Not so Miserable Life

  29. My Little Runaway #Part 1 of a series

  30. My Son's Best Friends *Related series to My Best Friend's Dad

  31. My 11th Summer*

  32. One Night

  33. Poindexter Files*

  34. Pride-Pride

  35. Rabbit: A Christmas Story

  36. Second Chance for Love

  37. Six Black Boys*

  38. Skateboard Boy*

  39. Skateboard Christmas

  40. Sudden Family*

  41. Taking a Chance on Love

  42. The Year I Learned to Love my Brother (TYILTLMB)*

  43. The Reynolds Twins*

  44. Tommy Boy #Part two of a series

  45. To the Max

  46. Tracy*

  47. Trailer Park Christmas

  48. Trick or Treet Dress Up

  49. Tween to Teen*

  50. What a Dollar Will Buy

  51. It's Amazing What Sex Can do for a Guy (as smoothoperator52)