The Sailor's Stories

1037 Chapter thirty seven – The Sailor’s Awakening.

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The wind had been strong that day, although it had eased a little from when he had first sat down. It was, however, still strong enough to swirl through the sand, pushing it up into the air, driving it in lazy almost angry circles, before letting it rest only to drive it skyward again. The tempestuous scene was quite interesting to watch, and the boy had thought to himself, had it been any stronger it would have been nothing short of awe inspiring. Now in the bright light of day, he realized much to his chagrin that, that was  somewhat how he had been feeling when he got here. He couldn’t help but imagine, that his thoughts were just like those grains of sand, and the wind that swirled through his mind, the emotions that had been stirred up in him lately. Unfortunately for him though, he didn’t have enough time to bring those thoughts fully to fruition, as he noticed far to late, that he had been found by the very person he had been trying to avoid for the last few hours.

With the fall now in full swing, the weather had certainly turned for the worse, the wind was strong and biting, the rains had started and it was turning cold. Sunny dry days were now well and truly at a premium and the leaves were all too often falling lazily from the trees. He’d become all too acquainted with that fact over the last few weeks of having to rake the lawn. It was a job he particularly despised, but it did afford him some time to himself, to think his way through the many things that were bothering him. As he had sat there all alone, looking out over the sea, he couldn’t help but wonder about this latest turn in the relationship, and at the same time, feel that it may be going the way of those leaves. Why was this so hard for him, these were supposed to be the best years of his life.

Two boys now sat silently together side by side on the beach. To be fair…, you couldn’t really call it a beach per se, as it really wasn’t that large, not compared to the sweeping great expanses of the Californian or Florida beaches anyway. Sure, it went on for a good few miles in length, curving away at either end to stretch off even further out of sight. But the flat expanse of sand barely stretched for fifteen yards anywhere along it towards the waters edge at low tide. And at the other side from the water, there was a sharp grass covered sandy rise. Although it did somewhat look like it, you couldn’t really tell whether it was man made or not, but it did do quite well to stop the water from going to far inland. It was a rather peaceful spot actually…, even in this cold dark and windy weather.

It was on that sandy rise that the boys sat, on this slow but chill lazy afternoon, though it was hard to tell whether it was the air temperature, or what was between them that was causing that chill. The summer had been fantastic, and none of this had been a problem, but with that season well and truly out of the way, everything had been getting busier in their lives again. Now that they were juniors in high school, the work load had increased, and with swim practices hotting up for the few upcoming meets, it had left them little time to share with each other outside of their commitments, or the social strata. Adding to all that, with what had happened that very morning, he felt even more betrayed, and all it did was to further fuel his anger.

They had had their first fight that morning, and we’re not talking just a little tiff either, no this was a full on grudge match. They had only just found each other again, though not for the lack of someone’s searching, and someone else desperately trying to avoid being found. Although they had been sitting quietly next to each other for some time, still not a single word had yet been spoken, neither one knowing quite what to say, or even how to begin. The gulf between them was growing steadily with each passing minute, and someone was going to have to say something or it would all be over. It wasn’t until the taller of the two looked out over the water, for the umpteenth time, breathing in a huge lungful of air, only to let it out in a pitiful exasperated sigh…

“You really hurt me you know?”

“I…, I know…, I’m so sorry…, I really didn’t mean to say it like that.”

“Sorry might not cut it this time…, I mean…, how long have we known each other?”

“A long time…, but…, I mean…, what? … What’s that got to do with anything?”

“Everything…” He said, letting slip another frustrated sigh…, He really just doesn’t get it sometimes

The wind was starting to pick up again and that last word was almost lost in it, it was said that quietly. But he had caught it, and knew what it might mean. He knew he really had screwed up badly, but he thought that his friend was strong enough to handle it…, after all, he had only been joking. Of course that didn’t change the way his friend had looked at him at the time, the pained and embarrassed expression that he had held on his face, was still all too fresh in his mind. Why is it that some things, once said, are so hard to take back? Sadly he knew, that he could do little about it right then, and just had to hope that he could do enough damage control to avoid any further hurt.

But then sitting there in that moment, he felt abject terror as he once again looked at his friends face and found that the hurt was still very much there. The embarrassment was gone, however, but that was of little comfort to him right then, as that had been replaced by something far worse…, resignation. His heart rocketed through him to the very bottom of his stomach…, it was woefully obvious, by his friends expression, that he most certainly wasn’t as good at dealing with this as he had initially appeared. Except for when they were younger, he couldn’t even remember the last time that he had even seen his friend cry…, but the slow tracks of tears now cutting through the thin layer of windswept sandy grime on his face, was the most troublesome thing he had seen in a very long time. In all honesty, he didn’t think he could feel any worse right then, or that his heart could fall any lower…, but it did.

The boy sitting beside him was his everything…, his friend, his lover and his rock, he’d been there for him through thick and thin, someone that he could always depend on. Not having him by his side anymore would well and truly crush him, and he feared that what he had done, may have just caused that very fear to become reality. In fact, if the smaller, now very scared boy, thought hard about it, he could think of only one other time he had seen his friend so upset…, but then…, that was years ago and completely out of his control at the time.

All too soon, his own tears started to flow, as he reached over to put an arm lovingly, though at the same time tentatively across his friends shoulders. He hoped desperately to lend some much needed support but, knowing deep down that what he truly craved right then was for his friend to wrap his strong arms around him and say that everything was alright, that this was nothing, a small ripple, that they would get through it. They were selfish thoughts, he knew that…, but the strength of his desperation was winning out, and right then he was powerless to stop them. When his friend shrugged the offered arm away, his heart shattered, and he almost felt as if the world had come to an end…

“I…, I don’t know what to do…,” He said, feeling the emotions spilling over, and the tears brimming at the surface again. “I said I was sorry and I meant it…, can’t we please just get past this…, please?”

“FUCK! … You know how I feel about you…, you know I’d do anything I could for you…, but I just don’t think this is one of them…, GOD! … I don’t know what the fuck’s wrong with me…, I just feel so…, dirty…, so used.”

“Cam…, please…, I love you so much…, I can’t bare the thought of losing you…, I really thought you were into it, or I never would have done it…, I just wanted to…”

“You wanted to WHAT?!”

“To…, make…, you…, feel…, special…” He said, between new rounds of sobbing. He was instantly scared…, he had never raised his voce like that before, “To show you how much you mean to me…”

That was it…, it’s true, I really did love him…, I’d always loved him, at first it was as a brother, but as the years had gone on, it was as so much more. I knew that I would go to the ends of the world for him, and probably even beyond if I had to…, if there was such a thing…, but that wasn’t the point now was it? I loved him more than I loved anything else in my world, more than myself even. He really was my all, life would go on without him, of that I was sure, though it would never be the same again…, but he had hurt me so badly, was what I felt for him enough?

Taking a quick glance over at him, seeing the mess he had made of himself…, I guess it was. He had pulled his legs back into his body, hugging them tightly and rocking slightly as the tears flowed unabashedly down his beautiful face. So much so that it tore through my heart, it just wasn’t in me to watch him in so much pain, I couldn’t just sit there and do nothing while he cried his heart out, that simply was more than I could bare. Turning slightly, I reached out and pulled him into my arms, holding him close as he buried his face into my chest and cried himself out. Rocking him softly back and forth, whispering soft sweet nothings into his ear, I could feel his heart as it raced in his chest, but he was getting calmer. Through all that, my mind was still in turmoil, like a stormy nights waves crashing against a rocky cliff. I had to get past this if I wanted to keep him, and I did want to keep him, he was the best part of me…, I just didn’t know how.

All in all, it had been a pretty emotional day to say the least. The way it had started was incredible, the feelings that we had felt, the togetherness, the raw emotional sense of sharing each other…, of becoming one. The problem was though, I really hadn’t been ready for it…, it was like it just seemed as though things were moving way too fast for me. Sure at the time, I was kinda into it, but I always thought that it would have been him giving it up for me, not the other way around. It was that fact that really had me screwed up, like I said…, I was into it. But what does that even mean? Could I be into it again? For him…? Maybe…, I just don’t know. What we had done that morning was supposed to be the ultimate expression of how we felt for each other…, or at least it should have been…, the problem was, that for me at least…, it wasn’t. I did feel dirty and used and tricked into something I didn’t think that I could ever want…, but I did love him.

Waking up next to Mark a few hours after it had happened, was not overly special in and of itself, as we had been there in that moment so many times before…, but the hunger in his eyes over what we had done…, or more, what he had done to me…, had really freaked me out. So much so, that it had turned the whole experience into a place I just didn’t want to be in. Did what we do make me gay? I mean…, I’m not gay…, I’ve got a girlfriend…, I can’t be gay…, can I? But could I be gay? It’s true I had enjoyed it once the pain had passed, I had enjoyed the feeling of being one with him, of sharing each other. But what did that really make me? I think it was those very confused thoughts that had forced us into the first real fight that we had ever had.

We’d both said some things that we really shouldn’t have, and in the end I just couldn’t take it any longer and had gotten dressed and stormed out of his house. I’d walked around for a while trying to get a handle on what I was feeling, and had found myself alone on the beach, thinking. It was all so confusing, and I felt like the fragile world I had created for myself was crumbling all around me…, I just couldn’t get over the fact that I always thought I would be the dominant one in the relationship…, but that morning…, he had taken that all away from me, and to tell the truth, I really liked it, but I was petrified that I wasn’t a man anymore.

When it all came down to it, I really did have a great time. To be woken up that way, has got to be the best thing in the world, and yes what came after was pretty damn good too. Thinking about it seriously, I would be lying if I tried to tell myself any different. Pretty sure I was still not gay though, Maybe this is just a phase? I kept telling myself. Even then I doubt I really believed that, as I looked down into my lover’s red puffy tear stained eyes. They were still the most beautiful things I had ever seen, even the way they were right then…

“I was into it Mark…, and I do love you…, I just didn’t like who you were and what you did after.”

“Guess I did kinda get a little carried away huh?”

“Ya think?”

His giggle was infectious, I had always loved that, and soon found myself in a similar condition. When things had settled down a little, almost in unison we reached out to gently wipe the tears off of each other. It was a tender moment and I saw myself, against my better judgment, falling even harder for him. That he loved me was without question, I could see it in his eyes, right there along with the pain of him hurting me, and that alone broke my heart in two again. Forcing me to think very hard about what I was going to do, or more to the point what I would do for him…, all I could think about right then, was god forbid if he ever found out I was incapable of saying no to him…

“Next time just be a little more concerned about my feelings…, ok?”

“Next time?” He said, with a somewhat mischievous little smirk.

“You heard me…”

“I love you so much Cam…, but the steaks are burning…”

“Huh?”

“I said, the steaks are burning…, Jesus Cam…, are you ok?”

There was smoke in my face, and my eyes were starting to water a little. I could feel a trickle of sweat drip down my back under my t-shirt, and wondered why it was so hot all of a sudden. But then coming back to myself fully, I looked down and saw that the steaks that I was supposed to be cooking, were indeed in danger…, I quickly flipped them and found that only one was almost beyond hope. Where the fuck did that come from? With the danger averted I looked back up into Caleb’s face and smiled a distant almost embarrassed smile…

“Um…, yeah…, sorry bud…, was a million miles away for a second there…”

“A second? … I’ve been calling you for ages…, are you sure you’re ok…, you’re looking a little peaky.”

“Yeah man…, I’m fine…, was just thinking…, and a little hungry too I guess.”

“Mmhmm…, I thought it was only Jarheads that got the thousand yard’er going…, but from what I could see, you definitely had it down pal.”

“Ha! … Shut up smart ass…, here, these are done…,” I said, as I piled a plate. “Why don’t you take them in to the oven to keep warm.”

Caleb just shook his head, making tsk sounds, and took the plate loaded with meat into the kitchen. As he walked away I couldn’t help but wonder what had brought that memory back. It wasn’t the worst moment of my troubled relationship with Mark, but it was certainly right up there. I put it all out of mind though, when I saw the boys heading back up from the beach…, maybe that was it. I have to admit, that I had been a little emotional lately, and the conversation with JJ had kinda caught me off guard. I guess the combination of that, plus seeing the boys walk down to that very same beach, must have just triggered something in my fried subconscious.

The boys had made it back to the table just in time to help Reggie with the fixings. That woman…, she never failed to impress, there was drinks, crusty bread, salads of all types, and her very own potato salad, that was just…, well, words can’t describe it really. It appeared that everything was ready, and they were just waiting on me to finish the meat, which itself was almost done, or at least it would be in a few minutes…, just enough time…

“Dale! … Front and center!” I called out.

JJ and Carl both looked up when I called him over, but soon went back to their conversation. JJ it seemed had certainly come out of his shell, he was smiling that sweet smile of his far more often and being very engaging. I caught a brief glimpse and an appreciative smile from his father, once he too had seen his boy interact with mine. This was going to be an interesting evening I think, as Dale walked up, all smiles…

“Reporting for duty sir!” He said, saluting with a cocky tone and a shit eating grin.

“Hey now…, watch yourself you little shit…, or I’ll open up a can tickle on yo ass.”

“You wouldn’t dare…” I think the boy was actually shocked.

“Watch me…” I said, not able to hide the mischievous smirk any longer.

Once he realized I wasn’t serious, he couldn’t himself, as he burst out laughing and I soon found myself following suit. He hadn’t been serious or rude, just friendly. It was indicative of the relationship I shared with my boys, and I loved the fact that we could joke with each other. Time was short however, and I wanted to know how JJ was, I was concerned for the poor boy, because if I was right…, well, I’ve been there before…

“So…, JJ looks a lot more comfortable…, you guys had a good talk?”

“Yeah we did…, he’s really kewl when he opens up a bit.”

“That’s good to know…, did he say anything to you about school?”

“He said he doesn’t want to go back…, and that he thinks he might be…, well…, think you already know huh?”

“He didn’t say, but I’ve got an idea…, so do you think you guys might become friends…, I think he could use some right now.”

“Yeah sure…, like I said Uncle Cam…, he’s kewl…” he said, as he leaned into me, then with a cheeky grin covered slightly by his hand, he whispered, “And he’s cute too.”

I laughed out loud with that, throwing my head back. Caused quite a stir actually and many heads turned in our direction. I was still laughing somewhat, a few minutes later, when I handed my nephew a plate full of meat and then gave him a light spank on the butt, sending towards the table. That was the last of the meat, and for now my work was done, and I was able to sit back and enjoy the fruits of my labors with good food and even better company. The meal went incredibly well, not that I had any real doubts. Everyone went away satisfied, although I had to make a point of telling Corey to eat some greens…, that boy was a shocker when it came to eating vegetables.

An hour or so later, and the table had been cleared, the kids had surprised us and gotten up to do a marvelous job, even JJ helped out. With the five of them working together, the job was done in no time. So as a reward for their labors, I opened up the spa pool, and after a little while, all but Sam and Corey had jumped in and were relaxing and chatting in the frothy bubbling warm water. As to where the other two were, I would find out later, but then to be honest, it wasn’t much of stretch to know what they were up to. Since I had forgotten to mention the spa pool on the phone to Caleb earlier, neither Sam or JJ had brought a suit, but Dale had immediately offered to help out and taken him upstairs, a suddenly worried Carl following closely. This left the adults plenty of much needed conversation time together at the table. Don’t get me wrong, I love my boys dearly, but I have to admit I latched onto that conversation like a hungry man at an all you can eat buffet. It never occurred to me I could be so starved for adult conversation, but it was like a balm to my tired mind, so after that night I was determined to not get that way again.

After a while, Corey and Sam snuck out of the house and into the pool. It escaped the notice of her parents, but not mine…, or Reggie’s. She looked over at me with an inquisitive little look, and I subtly shook my head to assuage her fears. She let it go, knowing that I would tell her later if there was a problem. As the night grew darker and cooler, the kids had gotten out the pool and had gone upstairs to shower and change. Now that it was quite late, Caleb and Cassie were making rumbles of leaving, so Dale came up to me to ask if JJ could sleepover. I had no real problems with it as the next day was Sunday, so I looked over at Caleb, and he also agreed telling me to just send him packing when he became to much of a bother. Corey was a little upset that Sam couldn’t stay also, but succumbed to looks that we all gave him…, he took it well but was still not happy. With that sorted, the others left, and the boys settled down in the family room to watch a movie. I made a few snacks for them, then headed upstairs, I was exhausted and needed some proper sleep in a proper bed. After a quick shower, I settled in and began to drift slowly into a somewhat peaceful sleep, wondering what the next day would bring.

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Written by bigct/Octavius

April 2, 2010 at 09:00

3 Responses

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  1. Nice chapter.

    Brian

    April 2, 2010 at 15:35

  2. Another awesome chapter. Well worth the wait. Cheers

    Dawngreeter

    April 3, 2010 at 00:40

  3. 😉

    Beach

    May 7, 2012 at 17:02


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