Re-Edited - Draft One
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To my friend and editor Leo, who has spent a great number of hours revamping the face of EIWT.
To my friend and fellow writer Hunter, for all the support he has shown during the course of my writing. Check out his story Open Hearts.
Songs In This Chapter
1. Almost Over by Aquilo
2. Poison & Wine by The Civil Wars
3. Kill Em With Kindness -- Acoustic Version by Selena Gomez
In The Last Chapter: Another day in hellish paradise' for the Sam and Ethan turns into an even more ludicrous turn of events when Ethan learns that
Sam may or may not be partnering up with him for the science-fair. So Sam is left in
Even If We Tried
By D.K. Daniels
Part 10 - SEGMENT 1/2
Song 1: Almost Over by Aquilo
Sent: "Ethan, I'll stop being friends with Austin if you'll talk to me."
I knew I was lying of course, but I did want Ethan to talk to me, so I figured a little white lie -- as mom called it --
wouldn't hurt all that much, considering what was going on.
Received: "Leave me alone!"
That was the last message I had sent to him. He hadn't bothered to try and message me since yesterday.
I think the word was getting around the school, because I was getting quite a few messages from people who were saying
"congratulations Sam" or "is it true Sam, that your gay?" It was getting out of control and I could not quarantine the problem.
It was like a disease that was living on my back and I couldn't shake it off. It was just there and had no purpose other than to ridicule me.
I wondered how Austin put up with it the first time it happened to him.
Then I remembered I'm not the only one in this predicament and I messaged him that morning and made arrangements to walk into school together.
If we were going to be ridiculed at least let us show our dignity and face it head on.
After I showered, I headed down for breakfast. It was the quietest breakfast I had ever had.
My mom didn't really speak much this morning which was weird too, but she did down three cups of coffee since I got up,
so maybe she was suffering from some sort of exhaustion.
Getting up from the kitchen table I washed my bowl out and left it on the draining board.
I gave mom a hug and slung my backpack over my shoulder, headed out the patio door and wheeled my bike out to the front.
Doing the same ritual as every day, I hopped on and cycled toward school.
Arriving at school I dismounted at the curb side and pushed my bike into a free slot in the bike rack.
I dug into my bag for the bike lock and put it around the wheel and through the frame of my bike and onto the mount of the bike rack,
just like any other day. When I finished zipping my bag up, I heard Austin say, "Good Morning."
Come to think of it, I was getting used to hearing his voice, so much so that I recognised it without even having to look at him.
It was the little details that drove me crazy about this boy.
I know I couldn't exactly give him up, but I wanted to try and win my friend back.
There were only two other people about whom I could honestly say that I knew their voices without having to look at them.
One being my mom, of course and the other being Ethan.
I had spent a great deal of time when I was younger with Ethan, so it was a natural thing to know his voice.
Although I spent quite an amount of time with my little sister, I guess you could say I sort of knew her voice,
but I wasn't as clued in on it as the most important ones.
Turning around to Austin I gave him a smile and a small wave as I strode away from the bike rack and walked over toward him.
Slipping my backpack strap onto my shoulder I now stood in front of him. It was then that he said in a teasing but soft tone,
"Do you have a sore throat or something?"
It was a weird question but then I realised that I never said good morning back to him, so I quickly caught on.
"Oh... I'm sorry your lordship. Good Morning!" I said dryly.
He gave a soft smile and looked down at the pavement and then caught my gaze. "How are you today?" He asked with sincerity.
I thought about telling him how yesterday went. I mean it didn't exactly go the way I wanted it;
but I guess it was going to be the best I was going to get for now, or possibly forever.
`That is kinda sad', I thought, `what if I'm losing Ethan forever?'
It would be something that I could get over, sure. But it would all be new to me, because I would be navigating in an unknown fog without him.
Just without him things are a little cloudy in my life, like `seriously, where's the sunshine, it's depressing down here.
' Snapping out of my trance I became aware of Austin eyeing me with curiosity.
Pointing for the school building we started to break into a slow walk.
I jumbled the thoughts around in my head and contemplated about how to start this conversation.
Once I reached my conclusion I slowly braced myself for the muddled mess I was about to try and embark on.
"Well, I tried talking to Ethan yesterday after school... I don't think he wants anything to do with me anymore.
I mean, I said sorry a couple of times. I even said that I would play lacrosse with him. I don't know what else to do."
There was a subtle pause from Austin as we reached the front door. I pulled open the glass door for him to go first.
It felt like the natural thing to do. I guess I'm not what you call a proper gentleman, but I do have manners, I guess.
Watching Austin slip through the open door, I then shifted the palm of my hand to the middle of the steel framing and slipped though it myself.
Then Austin said with his right eyebrow arched and a coy smile,
"You got lacrosse?" He asked it with a content and merry ring to it.
He was certainly happy compared to the last couple of days.
It was like his mood had completely shifted and it was not like how he had been acting previously.
I found it both weird and intriguing at the same time.
Heading down the semi busy hallway, I looked around in hopes that Ethan was here. I just wanted to see him.
That would make me feel at ease. But in the meantime, I decided to get back to Austin's question. Digging deep into my thoughts,
I became aware that I had told Austin about my getting lacrosse.
I also noticed that a couple of people were looking at us as we passed them; it was such a negative stigma.
Can I not even walk with someone without being judged?; it's ridiculous. I mused about the day I'd leave this crappy place.
Playing around with the thoughts in my head I tried to wrap my brain around what everyone's problem was...
"Are you there?", Austin teasingly mocked.
Coming back to reality, I turned to him and gave him a soft smile. Looking over at him, I found myself admiring the life size puppy in front of me.
I mean literally he was cuter than a puppy. That's the only way I can say how cute he really was.
His small snub nose and brown eyes were so dreamy; this was made clearer by his freshly washed and soft ruffled
hair that fell into place on his forehead and below his ears. He was so kissable,
but then the ambient noise of mumbling faded the soft silence away and was replaced with talking, laughter and slamming of locker doors.
"Em... Eh... Yeah", I quickly shot back, trying to show that I was actually listening.
"Really?, then what did I say?" He knowingly mocked, as he gave a toothy smile.
Blushing I shrugged my shoulders and decided to go with the casual approach.
"Em... Gay stuff", I sarcastically teased.
He sniggered and gave me a playful push, as we stopped beside my locker.
"No seriously," he asked with all joking aside.
"You said something about lacrosse, right?", I asked hoping that he was actually talking about sports.
He gave a slight nod in agreement and then started walking toward his locker.
Stopping in front of my locker, I gave the dial a few twists and entered my combination.
The locker door was getting old and stiff so I had to push up on the handle as I opened it;
this was the only way to get it to budge. I gave it a firm yank and the locker opened without a problem.
"So how come you didn't tell me?" Austin asked while he stood at his locker. Rummaging in my cubby-hole,
I found my coursework that I needed to submit and then leaned slightly out from the locker to look at him.
"I'm sorry; it never crossed my mind. Besides, I'm doing baseball with you."
Sighing on the inside I thought I was free from further interrogation but I guess that would have been wishful thinking.
He turned and looked in my direction and said, "Yeah your right, but it would have been cool to know that you got both."
I felt a little agitated by his comment, I mean did he have to know every little thing I did.
I know it was not that big of a problem, so why was he digging into it. I was now conflicting with my decision.
I'm probably becoming a snarky or impatient person; I likely have a low tolerance for bullshit now.
Not that that is a bad thing or anything, but it would probably make me unapproachable, right.
Whom am I fooling; I'm already unapproachable, so what would be the difference?
What if me and Ethan started talking again; would that make things worse or better?
Like right now, I'm not talking to him, which is annoying and driving me insane; but what if we never talked again.
Would it be unfair to say that I'd have that free time to do whatever I wanted?
I know that free time would be cool, but it's never that appealing for that long -- like it's maybe cool for a couple of weeks or months,
but when it finally gets to years it would be very lonely. Sure, I'd have Austin, and as much as he is perfect in every little way,
I don't think I could be around him all the time. I mean I like doing my own thing sometimes.
Austin has really helped me see some things for what they really are.
I maybe blind sometimes, but he has taught me to see the bigger picture.
Sighing, I admitted to myself silently that I would be honest to Austin from here on; he at least deserved that much.
"I promise, I'll tell you everything from now on." I stated softly and locking eyes with him.
He gave a bashful smile and a small nod and then continued to do his thing at his locker.
I decided that I had everything I needed for the day, and opted to run to the bathroom while I waited for Austin to finish with his business.
Closing my locker door, I rotated the lock dial and turned to gawk at Austin.
I then thought about what had happened with the bully in the hallway yesterday and I had second thoughts of leaving him,
but my doubts where extinguished when Ms. Campbell took her post in the middle of the corridor and stood there like most
Wednesday mornings and observed that there was no messing around going on.
Deciding to throw a little humour into the equation, I said in a merry tone,
"Austin, I need to take a shit."
He turned to me and cracked a smile before throwing his head back to start a hearty chuckle.
I think that moment got to him, because he started going weak at the knees.
I watched him try to calm himself before he decided to respond. He started to speak,
"Alri...", he managed to get out before erupting back into another fit of laughter.
I then had the sudden urge to go the big toilet, as I was nearly ready to explode.
`I really needed to go', so I started to slowly back away from Austin.
Song 2: Poison & Wine by The Civil Wars
"I really need to go; I'll catch up with you in class," I mocked, flushed with embarrassment.
He closed his locker and laughed and finally said, "Alright, if you're more than thirty minutes, I'll send out a search party."
Cracking a smile at his joke, I turned and headed for the bathroom.
I pushed open the door impatiently for the cubicle and locked it quickly behind me.
I then coated the toilet seat in layers of toilet paper, unhitched my belt buckle and sat down.
While I was sitting on the toilet, I heard a couple of people come and go; the toilet door opened a few times and was accompanied by the
swift banging of it hitting the wall behind the door or the ruffling sound it made before it closed and returned the bathroom to silence.
I heard a conversation between two people about one of them having to redo their driving test for their licence.
But other than that, they soon exited as I began wiping you know where.
Once I had finished, I pulled my pants back up and redid my belt when I heard the door open again and then close shortly behind it.
Unlocking the bathroom door, I went for the sink bank and pressed the faucet for a flow of water.
After rinsing my hands under the lukewarm water, I turned to the paper towel dispenser,
when I noticed a boy standing at the urinals on the far end of the bathroom.
I could swear it was Ethan, but I didn't want to say anything. Again panic set in as I thought it could have been him.
I mean, I've spent so long with him you'd think I'd know him when I saw him.
Pushing forward for the paper towels, I tried not to look at the boy I thought was Ethan and reached for the dispenser.
He then shook himself and I pulled for the paper from the fixture when the boy's head shifted position and looked over his right shoulder.
It was Ethan, but as quick as he looked he was shocked that it was me.
He hadn't planned to be in an isolated area with me. He quickly returned his gaze to the front and zipped himself before
turning around and walking to the sinks, completely bypassing me. He pressed down on the faucet and washed his hands.
He stopped as soon as he saw that I was right beside the towel dispenser and after a couple of seconds he sat back on the counter and sighed.
"Are you going to talk to me?", I asked in a moment of hope.
He kept his head bowed and directed forward toward the cubicle, and tried to say uncomfortably,
"I know Sam; about... you know," he uttered in a gentle but diminished voice.
I thought about what he could have possibly been referring to. I had a good idea that he was talking about me being gay. I of course denied it.
"You only know what I want you to know!", I asserted.
"I know everything you don't want me to know", he confirmed his suspicion, and declared it bluntly.
I felt quite small on the spot. I couldn't deny what I was and if Ethan could sense it then there was no telling him otherwise.
I felt a soft whimper come from inside of me and I mumbled as I stared at the floor in humiliation.
"I can't change. I want to, but I can't."
I then sensed Ethan taking a step forward and place his wet hand on my shoulder as I sniffled.
I heard him blunder his way through the next sentence,
"Sam...," he said gravely, "I... em..." He then sighed and leaned in and gave up; he gave me a small peck on my cheek.
I froze in the sudden heat of the moment. He then leaned back and became a little flushed, but he didn't say anything.
His kiss was soft, it wasn't wet like Austin's, it was nice but it felt weird at the same time.
But then the door of the bathroom opened again, and in walked two students.
That's when Ethan lightly shoved me and I hit the paper dispenser behind me.
"What the fuck, faggot!", he shouted, while he turned and scrambled toward the door.
All I could do was blink from shock. The students looked at me as I licked my lips and slowly stumbled toward the door
and pulled open the heavy wooden fixture and started walking toward my English class.
Navigating around desks, I sat down beside Austin who teasingly said, "I thought you fell down the toilet."
"Nooo," I said with no enthusiasm.
Then our English teacher arrived and began with the lesson. I went about the morning from class to class as the current
replay of events aired in my brain in a loop that really hurt. Ethan had really hurt me, but why did he kiss me?
I'm confused, like seriously. Why would he do that and then say something like that? It didn't make any sense at all.
Ethan sat across the classroom; he had moved his position today.
I think he felt a bit embarrassed and bad for what had happened because every time he would occasionally glance over at me his eyes would
wander all around the classroom and stop on me with this saddened expression.
I wondered if this was just about over, because I know that we're not who we used to be anymore.
I gave Ethan all my time, all my trust and honesty.
I was pretty much reliant on him, and I think between the morning and lunch time something just clicked.
I got a sudden feeling that I was almost under water, like drowning. I have to breathe; I have to make myself be heard.
I didn't want to feel like I was drowning anymore. I waited for the moments on the clock to tick forward as it neared lunchtime.
When the bell chimed, everyone shot up as the teacher shouted out over the class and mentioned about assignments that were due.
I could see from the side of my peripheral vision that Ethan just vacated the classroom as quick as he could.
I waited for Austin to pack up his things, and the two of us made our way to the cafeteria.
We both cued at the lunch counter and then made our way to an empty table.
Placing the tray on the table, I unhitched the straps of my school bag and tossed it under the table.
With the same motion Austin did the same and then we both slid into the table at the same time.
Song 3: Kill Em With Kindness -- Acoustic Version by Selena Gomez
I wanted to eat, but I couldn't. I had a clear view of the traitors. They were eating and all seemed so content.
Ethan had seemed to have livened up a little since this morning and was starting to smile and that was slowly starting to eat away at me.
How could people be so susceptible to changing moods; there was seriously something wrong with them.
I mean that can't be normal, can it? But then it just got to a point where I couldn't take any more of these mind games they were playing.
I think Austin could sense it, but then it became evident when I shot up from the table.
Anger brewed deep down and I charged over to the table where they all sat.
Towering above Ethan I gave Nash a sinister glare until he felt so uneasy that he broke eye contact with me and the entire table's banter subsided.
Ethan turned around and squinted up at me out of curiosity and become uneasy once he had seen it was me.
He quickly dipped his head down to his lap out of disappointment until Nash stated sarcastically,
"Do you want something?"
Fuming with annoyance, I was not really in control of what was going to come next.
I saw my opening and I decided to lay the rules down for everyone to understand.
Responding in a sour tone I said,
"I'm just here to say how everything really is."
Everyone looked down at the table except for Nash, who looked baffled at the amount of balls I must have been showing to confront him:
he thought he was this untouchable character up there because he was rich.
He pretended to be nice but he was no different from any of the cliché school bullies.
He was just someone who thought he could abuse his power however he saw fit,
but I was about to shoot him down from that pedestal he was flying high on.
"Starting with you, Nash. You're a manipulative, confused bisexual with nothing to bring to the table other than
poisonous words and your daddy's wallet. Deep down you're a prick, unworthy of anybody's trust and you're a callous human being,
to be able to operate normally after treating your cousin like that."
I then turned to Blake, as I was now clearly ready for a spree of complete honesty.
"And you Blake- You were supposed to be my friend. I thought you'd be better than that,
to believe whatever an unstable individual could tell you was true without even looking into it.
I never thought you could turn out to hate gay people, considering your dads just got married."
Lastly, I shifted my attention to Ethan, who had assumed a slumped posture below me and looked frightened to death of what I was about to say.
"And what was that, if you cared, you wouldn't have done what you did this morning, especially after, you know...
I've known you all my life; we went everywhere together and spent every day together in the summer.
I broke my arm when I fell from that bridge our hideout was under; do you remember coming to my rescue,
just like the time I had your back when you got in a fight with Brice Hartwell?
He hit you and I took him clean off his feet for doing that, did that not mean anything to you?
I then looked around the table and directed my anger at everyone that was sitting in front of me, none of whom dared say a word.
Austin was just frozen beside me; at some point he must have followed me over and he couldn't bring himself to say anything either.
"If you have a problem with me and Austin, don't go behind my back.
If you want to fuck with someone, have the decency to do it to their face.
Half the people at this table are fudge packers, so what the fuck is the problem. Just grow up.
Finishing my rant, I felt Austin's small hand on my shoulder as he tried to guide me away from the table,
but I felt that I hadn't got everything out of my system. Just as I had started to turn,
I stopped and took a step back toward the table, toward Nash.
I sucked all my saliva into the centre of my mouth and spat at him across the table.
My spit landed on the top corner of his nose and started rolling down the side of his nose and into his right eye.
He just sat there as he wiped away the spit with his hand and I coldly said,
"That was for Austin!" With that I turned and with Austin started walking back to our table.
The cold screech of metal, tunnelled through the room, not long after I heard a faint bang from behind me.
Turning around with a gut feeling that Nash was getting up,
I spun around and saw Nash trying to get through the narrow passage between his table and the one that was nearest to him.
I thought that was it; I was going to get my first black eye in school from a flower-power.
But before he could get any further, Blake and Ethan clung onto his jacket and arm to stop him from making his way to me.
"You're dead, Twomey!", he declared.
I ducked below the table I was sitting at, still fuming and gripped onto my school bag and made a break for the cafeteria door with Austin
and didn't bother to look back. I was surprised that no teacher had caught me, but I was sure that I would hear something soon, I knew I would.
We headed out into the courtyard and went through the small archway and decided to take a walk around the school to cool down.
I was content walking along with Austin. He was all I needed for support; fuck Ethan, that's right, fuck all of them.
They were getting on my case, I want to just be me, and show Austin that I was okay with how everything was between us, and more importantly, t
hat I worshiped the ground he walked on.
A couple of minutes of fresh air, clear blue skies and sunshine was all it took to change and lighten my mood.
It almost felt that summer was here, with the high temperature that it was reaching today.
It was even better spending time with someone who understood me and I knew that I was not going to be bullied because of it.
Walking on the tarmac path around the school building,
Austin finally broke the silence by saying with a burst of energy that he obviously could not contain any longer.
"Well, that was awesome."
Looking over at him with the school building as a backdrop I smiled at him; but then I knew deep down that I didn't help anything along in the matter.
It seemed like a good idea at the time, but I knew it would surface problems later on.
Letting out a sigh, I shrugged my shoulders and said with uncertainty, "Really, I don't think I made the situation any better."
He just let out a scoffed laugh and in a lively tone said, "screw `em, they deserved it."
Nobody else was around us and it was becoming a peaceful stroll with just him and nobody else.
"Maybe," I added as I just looked down at the tarmac that had flakes of the freshly cut grass across it.
Then he came back again with an animated gesture as he re-enacted the motion of me spitting at Nash.
"That spit though!" he retorted, before chuckling and showing his sweet smile.
I felt somewhat at ease because of his carefree demeanour and I guess that was all it took for me to smile about what had happened.
I gave us a voice, maybe not the voice I was expecting but I definitely said something.
"Yeah, did you see it rolling down his face?", I then erupted into a hoarse laugh, as I struggled to clear my throat.
For a couple of minutes everything was quiet and nothing was said, until Austin came back with a question.
"Em, Sammy?", Austin gently asked.
"Yeah, Aussy" I added as I looked around us.
"Nawh! That nickname won't work", he returned, in a serious sounding tone.
Looking over at him I broke into a small chuckle because his face expressed a quizzical expression,
but his voice suggested a serious nature. He then thought for a second before proceeding.
"Call me your precious", he wittily replied as he increased his vocal registry when he got the `Precious'.
It appeared that he was trying to imitate Gollum from The Lord of The Rings.
Smiling at his choice of words and effort at sounding like Gollum, I then tried my hand at imitating Gollum myself.
"Okay, my precious. What do you want?"
He gave a light chuckle after I tried to copy him and then bluntly stated, "Em... what did you mean with Ethan, about this morning?"
I never had thought about this and never thought about telling him. It wasn't like I was hiding it from him.
I just never got the chance to process it, but since I made him a promise to be honest with him, and if I was, well, dating him, I'd tell him the truth.
Actually, come to think of it, what are we? Are we a couple or are we friends or just friends who really like each other?
I have the balls to stand up to Nash and risk my reputation, but I can't ask a boy I like if he is my boyfriend.
It will stay that way until I can figure out how to bring that up in a conversation. I want to be able to escape if I don't feel comfortable.
"Ah-ha, yeah that," I bashfully cried on the inside.
Figuring out where to start I decided to start after I came out of the toilet.
"Well, when I went to the bathroom, I met him when I was coming out of the toilet to wash my hands.
I didn't know it was him at first, but I had a gut feeling that it was him, if that makes sense. No pun intended,"
I mocked to inject some humour into the moment, but he didn't really laugh at it. I guess my jokes are really that bad.
We kept on walking toward the front of the school building as we were about halfway around the building at this point.
"But anyway, once I saw that it was him, I asked him if he was talking to me; while I was drying my hands.
A couple of seconds passed without him saying anything to me and then he suddenly had one of his hands on my shoulder.
I told him that I was gay, but he didn't really react; he just stood there.
I thought he was going to say it was okay and everything would be fixed,
but then he leaned in and gave me a peck on the cheek that was totally unexpected.
I didn't know what to do, I mean he has never done anything like that before, so I just kinda froze, I guess."
Austin was looking at me with a serious glare; all the giddiness was gone and he asked with a hint of suspicion,
I felt my heart sink. I looked at him with expressive eyes. I was like, please let me finish.
"I'm being honest, please", I said nervously and cautiously before continuing.
He gave me a weak smile, but it was enough to reassure me that he was not mad at me -- yet. "Okay, continue", he stated as he smiled a wider smile.
"Before I could get a word in to ask what that was for, or why he did it, the bathroom door opened and two other boys came in."
"And...", Austin cut in clearly getting inpatient.
"He pushed me away and shouted what the fuck, faggot? and stormed off."
He was still listening closely and he let me get what I had to say off my chest.
"Then I returned to class and you asked did I fall down the shitter."
Austin then smiled a white-toothed grin at that and I knew that he was just listening to what I had to say and that he was not angry at me.
The crinkles under his eyes became prone when he smiled and that was the indicator to me that he was content deep down, c
onsidering he had such a baby face.
He then sheepishly said, "So you didn't like kiss him back."
I was definitely a little surprised by the frankness of his question; it was a little worrying to think that in the future,
would he jump to conclusions before I've reached an evaluation even.
Shaking my head at his question I said in an earnest manner that I had nothing to hide
"No..., why would I? He's a jerk. Besides, I have a precious."
He then smiled at my honesty and I felt relieved for getting over that obstacle.
"Thanks for not lying; it means a lot to me", he said as his expression told me that it was a sincere apology for having jumped to conclusions.
"I promised, remember?" I said knowingly.
"I know, but it just means a lot to me though." he said again looking at me proudly.
"And you were, em... pretty cute when you got annoyed" h e said with a subtle but flirty tease to his statement.
I did feel myself starting to blush; I think he could see it and started to blush himself.
I could feel the heat of the moment rise between us and quickly shot back,
"Eh yeah, totally", he said as he bobbed his head up and down indicating that his word was the only word I should be accepting.
Feeling the butterflies in my stomach flutter and the blushing intensify, I said "you're the cute one."
Teasingly, he coyly returned the response to me "Nawh, you are." He then curled his bottom lip out into a small pout and declared
"I'm always right." Just then he gave me a playful dig on the upper part of my left arm.
Flinching from the impact I quickly shot back, "Oh! That hurt." He gave a hearty chuckle before replying wittily, "Good; now shut up and look cute."
I knew I couldn't compete with his little game, he was being so damn cute that I decided to back down and play it safe while he was happy.
`And yes, his punch was pretty hard.'
He looked over at me with puppy eyes as we reached the front entrance of the school and asked, "do you maybe want to meet up tonight?"
"Do I?, hmm" I teased. He gave me another dig in the same place he had given me the first time, and said optimistically,
"Seriously, can we, like meet up tonight?" Nodding my head and saying,
"Yes", I knew the deal was set; like how could you say no to that, he was being totally sweet.
Going back inside the school for the second half of the school day I made my way back to my locker with Austin.
I had art in the afternoon and I needed to get some of my art supplies.
Turning onto the corridor that houses our lockers I saw a rather large crowd clump around in the middle of the corridor
and walked ahead with my heart pumping faster.
I could sense an anxious feeling work its way up through my chest and it almost felt as if my heart was in my mouth.
Approaching the back of the crowd I drove through the people that were gathered around where our lockers were supposed to be.
Was there a fight, Iwondred, but when I had broken through to the far side of the circle there was no focal point, no fight.
I looked around in confusion, as I felt Austin's hand prod my hip.
Turning around to him he bobbed his head toward the lockers and that's when I saw what was written across my locker in thick black marker,
"Cum Guzzler." I thought I could sense what everyone was talking about, I thought they were laughing at me.
I never felt so humiliated in all my life, but I couldn't react. I felt myself welling up when I felt Austin try and pull me away from the situation,
but I refused to move. If anyone had seen from afar they would probably think I was not fazed by this, but I was mortified, I was crushed.
I had no words to offer. I rubbed my arm nervously as I looked down at the ground and then back up. That's when Ethan caught my eye.
He would have been going to his next class and we would usually meet up and talk for a few minutes here before heading to class,
but he didn't say anything. He just looked from me to my locker and back at me and Austin.
He looked guilty, but before he did anything else he just gripped the straps of his backpack firmer and dropped his head as he
pushed his way out of the crowd on the far side and disappeared. Austin walked over toward my locker and started to try and rub it off,
but it was no use. I could feel people sniggering at Austin, so that's why I turned around to him and grabbed his hand to tell him to stop.
Then I heard a familiar voice raise above everyone. It was our principal.
The people in the immediate area started to vacate as she cut through the crowd and saw us, since we were the focal point of the circle.
She observed how quiet I was and then noticed the words on the locker behind my head,
where Austin was standing with a smudge of black ink on his hand where he had been rubbing the locker door.
She then said in a serious tone, "What happened boys."
I was about to tell her that I came back from lunch and my locker was like that, but before I could get out "I came back...",
I started to whimper and break down in the hallway from embarrassment.
She sensed this and said in a more caring way, "Oh sweetie," before pointing at Austin to get the classroom door that was across from our lockers.
Doing so Austin ran and opened it for us and we went inside. She told Austin to wait outside, but I quickly snapped, "I want Austin."
She then nodded her head and told him to "Close the door." By this point I was starting to hyperventilate.
Austin looked scared and looked like he was on the verge of crying himself, but then the teacher said in an understanding way, "boys take a seat."
Doing so I slipped into a seat as the teacher and Austin did also, she tried hard to get me to come down from my frantic state.
It was working somewhat and when I finally stopped hyperventilating, she marched up to the teachers table and grabbed a box
of paper handkerchiefs and placed them on the desk in front of me. I played with my wrist band as I was clearly distraught with what had happened.
She looked from me to Austin, as she was trying to understand what was going on. "Sam, everything's going to be okay,"
Austin added with a softness that felt so soothing to me.
"It will," Ms Daly added before she asked "Boys, do you want to tell me what's going on, when you're ready?"
Before I got a word in Austin started talking for me on my behalf. "We came back and Sam's locker was like that."
"I see.", she said, "How come your hand is all black," she finally asked as she had noticed it.
Austin stumbled on his words and that's when I spoke for him as I sniffled, "He was trying to rub it off my locker."
I then started to snivel again and that's when Austin reached out and put his arm around me.
"I'm sorry Sam", he said despondently. Eyeballing him with teary eyes I leaned in to him, forgetting that our principal was actually in the room,
and talked muffled into his chest and hoodie that he was wearing.
His embrace was heaven, and his sweet smell made me forget all about this miserable place for a couple of moments.
"Don't be", I cried; then the teacher reminded us of her presence. "Boys, do you know who did it?", she questioned.
I was about to say yes, but Austin confirmed what I was about to say.
All I had to do was just confirm that what he had said was inherently true, when the principal asked me if his statement was accurate.
I added that it was someone from my old group of friends.
I knew it was not a lot to go on but it was all that I could give, I list of suspects, but not a particular individual; besides that, I was not rat.
She then asked, "Have you guys been threatened?" When both of us shook our heads no, she sighed.
Evidently, I was threatened but I didn't want adults getting involved, because they screw everything up.
"I'll get the caretaker to clean the locker immediately, okay Sam?" she told us; she then stood up and said to us to "wait here",
as the class had nobody scheduled to be in it and left the room.
Austin didn't say much but I could sense that he was as distraught as I was. I've had embarrassing things happen to me before but this was, this was... sigh.
Austin then leaned in again and hugged me, he clearly had no idea what to say other than comfort me.
It was nice of him, but the way he kept clinging onto me was starting to agitate me, however,
before anything else could annoy me the principal returned and gave a warm smile as she closed the door behind her.
Austin sat up as she looked over at us. "Okay, well Sam, the janitor is cleaning the locker as we speak.
Are you okay hunny? Do you want to go home?" She asked, trying to console me, like Austin was doing, but I was somewhere else.
All I managed was to cry and nod that something was wrong.
Shaking my head I indicated that I wanted to stay in the school, as I started to wipe my tears away and attempt to be brave.
She then asked again for reassurance and once I said, "Yes", she was content.
She asked me nervously, as she reached for my hand, "Do you want me to have a word with these people? If so, you can tell me their names."
I knew there was no way in hell that I was going to tell her what their names were. I didn't want anything worse to happen.
I guess you could say the worst had already happened but I doubt the worst has hit because as they say,
no matter how bad you think something is, it can always get worse.
Shaking my head again as a no, she nodded in confirmation and turned to Austin. "Are you okay?" she asked.
When Austin said "yes" she said that she would write us notes as to why we were late for class;
she reached around to the teacher's desk and grabbed a pencil and a piece of paper and started writing two identical
notes and tore them into two separate pieces and handed them to us.
Standing up, we all started to walk for the door when the principal stopped us, before she opened the door and said confidently,
"Don't let other people win the power of influence over whom you want to love."
She then smiled and both me and Austin let out a sigh of relief and exited out into the corridor.
The janitor had been at my locker and it was cleaned freshly already. It was remarkable at how quietly Ms Daly had dealt with everything.
I went to my locker but hesitated to open it, I felt a little sick and paranoid of even touching it, considering what was written on it not too long ago.
But I quickly broke that barrier when I looked at Austin, who had enough influence to cross that barrier.
Fumbling the right digits on the lock, I took my art materials from the locker and then closed it.
I looked at Austin with a hopeful expression and leaned in for a hug, before we both parted ways for our classes.
The rest of the afternoon was as uneventful as you could possibly imagine. I had the dignity to finish my day.
A couple of people asked about the locker, but when I retreated into my inner sanctuary,
I think they got the message when I didn't respond to the locker incident.
When mom picked me up she didn't say much until we were nearly home.
Since Lauran decided to get the bus she obviously took the option to talk about what had happened today.
"Sam, I got a phone call from your principal today." my mom said right off the bat.
"You can talk to me if you want to; what happened Samster?"
Looking out the window, I decided to evade her question and ask about Jonathan's graduation that was coming up.
She took note of it and changed the conversation with me, but I knew she would come back to me with what was happing at school or with my friends.
That evening I moped around finding it hard to concentrate, I tried drawing, I tried exercising, I tried jacking off,
but nothing would work to put me at ease.
Around midnight I fished out my phone and went to Ethan's chat log and started to type a message."
Sent: I guess we're not friends anymore, so it's something I'll have to learn to live with.
I really looked up to you; I could have never imagined myself without you, but we're finished.
When you walked by today like you didn't know me, it was the end of everything.
I thought you were my friend, and friends don't do that. You kissed me and then said some horrible things, they hurt.
Do you think I'm impenetrable? I can only put up with so much stuff before it breaks my respect for someone.
I hope that you are happy with your new friends, because you can go fuck yourself, Ethan.
I then went to my Facebook account and deactivated it, along with Twitter and Instagram, before I rolled over and fell asleep, feeling emotionally drained.
I knew that with what had happened today, me and Austin had made arrangements to just skip meeting up tonight and that was enough
for me to just forfeit and give in for the sake of peace.
The End Of Part 10 - Segment 1
If you've made it this far, thank you for reading.
Please, comments are welcome. Actually needed, lol.
Bibliography; of LGBTQ stories by D.K. Daniels, on Nifty.
Even If We Tried (First Draft) - Gay Male, Young friends
Spring Tide (Unfinished)- Gay Male, Young friends
As They Say (On-going) - Gay Male, Young friends
Our Little Darlings (Stand-Alone Edit)- Gay Male, High School
Ghouls, Goblins & Ghastly Boys (Mini-Series)- Gay Male, Young Friends
Light The Night (Mini-Series) - Gay Male, Young Friends
Who We Are (Stand-Alone Edit) - Gay Male, Young Friends
Bibliography; of LGBTQ stories by D.K. Daniels, on Iomfats
Who We Are (Listed under D.K. Daniels Author)
Bibliography; of LGBTQ stories by D.K. Daniels, On Cornercafe.us
Ghouls, Goblins & Ghastly Boys(Listed under D.K. Daniels Author)
Light The Night (Listed under D.K. Daniels Author)
Who We Are (Listed under D.K. Daniels Author)