Aaron's Journey Down The Long Road chapter 6

As the weeks and months passed, Aaron and Clark’s love deepened as did their commitment to each other. Before they realized it, their one year anniversary was upon them. Having no idea what to get Clark, Aaron called his sister, whom he had met one time when his family came to visit. “Hi, Susan, this is Aaron, Clark’s roommate. How are you doing?”

“I’m fine Aaron. It’s nice to hear from you. How’s everything?”

“It’s great, but I need your help with something. I just recently received a promotion, and I couldn’t have done it without Clark’s help, so I’d like to get him a little appreciation gift, but I don’t have a clue as to what to get for him. Got any ideas?”

“Wow, congratulations on your promotion. Let me think a minute.” There was a momentary pause, which took less than the requested minute. “You know, he’s really into dragons and metaphysical stuff, so anything along those lines would be perfect.”

“Dragons; got it. Thanks, Susan. Please give my best to everyone.”

“Will do and you’re welcome, Aaron. Give my love to Clark. Bye, bye.”

“Bye, Susan.” Hmm, Dragons; not very romantic, but it’s a start. I know he likes candles, but we can’t have open flames in the dorms. Maybe if I got him one of those electric ones. He picked up his phone and dialed the orderly room. “Hi, this is Senior Airman Suarez. May I speak to the First Sergeant, please? Thank you.”

“Airman Suarez, what can I do for you?”

“I just had a quick question regarding the regulations regarding candles in the dorm rooms. I know we can’t have regular candles because of the regulations against open flames, but are electric candles permitted?”

“Yes they are as long as they are not left plugged in when they aren’t being used and when nobody is in the room.”

“Okay, thank you First Sergeant.”

“You’re welcome, Airman.”

Great, I can get him an electric candle for the romantic gift. He left the dorm hopped into his car and headed for the mall. The first stop was Spencer’s where he picked up a couple of dragon sculptures and a bumper sticker that read “Meddle not in the affairs of dragons for you are crunchy and taste great with ketchup”, then headed to Yankee Candle where he emerged a short time later with a couple of electric candles and a huge headache from the overwhelming scents of all the candles. God I hate that place. The scents are so strong I get a headache just standing in the doorway. Happy with his purchases he headed to the gift wrapping counter, got everything gift wrapped then headed back to base where he hid the presents. He had arranged a day of leave so that they could spend their anniversary together, making love, having a romantic dinner, giving the love of his life his gifts, then making more love. He counted the hours until Clark got off duty. Clark didn’t know it, but he had made reservations at a hotel for the two of them. Since he had an Arizona driver’s license, nobody questioned him making reservations so he didn’t worry about word getting back to base about him renting a hotel room, especially since he showed his military ID to get a substantial discount on the room. At last Clark came through the door. As soon as it was closed Aaron pounced on him and smothered him with kisses. “Hurry up, get changed and pack an overnight bag, baby.”

“What for” He asked, puzzled.

“That’s for me to know and you to wonder about.”

“Alright, what’s going on in that devious mind of yours?”

“All in good time my love, all in good time.”

“Okay. So what am I packing?”

“Only what you need for an overnight stay.”

“An overnight stay where?”

“Baby, what’s tomorrow?”

Clark immediately replied “Our one year anniversary” A response that made Aaron tear up slightly, knowing that he had remembered.

“Yes, and I’ve booked us a hotel room for tomorrow. When we get up tomorrow, we’re going to get dressed and head out there. We’re gonna fuck all day, have dinner and then fuck all night.”

“No, we’re not gonna fuck, we’re gonna make love.”

“Yeah, and the lovemaking is going to start right now!” Aaron growled as he started tearing Clark’s clothes off. Clark had no choice but to respond in kind.

The next morning found the two men up early, showered, shaved, dressed and headed for breakfast at the chow hall. After a quick breakfast, bags were loaded into Aaron’s car and they headed towards Las Vegas. “Where are we going, baby?”

“You’ll see. Remember what I told you last night?”

“You mean about the hotel reservation. You never told me where.”

“Well, you’ll find out in about a half hour, depending upon the I-15 traffic, so sit back, relax and enjoy the ride.” He reached out and took Clark’s hand and held it until they reached the interstate, where he insisted on keeping both hands on the wheel because of the crazy drivers. Fifteen minutes later they pulled off onto the strip.

“You’re not taking me to where I think you’re taking me, are you?”

“That depends on where you think I’m taking you.”

“The Tropicana.”

“Nope” He replied truthfully as he slowed down and turned on his turn signal, a huge, shit-eating grin slowly spreading across his face.

“You’re shitting me; CEASAR’S PALACE?!”

“Yup. Nothing but the best for you, my dearest love.”

“How could you possibly afford this place?”

“I hit the Texas lottery back in Basic for ten thousand dollars.”

“Oh.” Clark said quietly, turning his face away from Aaron.

Sensing something was wrong, Aaron, instead of pulling up in front of the hotel casino, pulled into the parking lot, parked and shut off the car. He unbuckled his seatbelt and turned to face Clark. “Clark, baby, what’s wrong.”

He looked at Aaron; dejection showing on his face, then looked away. “This.” He waved his arm towards the casino. “I can’t even begin to compete with this. What can I possibly give you for our anniversary that can even remotely come anywhere near this?”

“Baby, this is not your anniversary present. This is simply where we’re going to spend it, compliments of the Texas state lottery. Besides, what you have given me far surpasses this.”

“What could I have possibly given you that’s better than this?”

“I’ll tell you. You’ve given me a wonderful year full of love and happiness. It has been hands down without a doubt the happiest year of my life. When my parents threw me out and my entire family, including aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents disowned me, I was totally and completely devastated. I had no clue what I was going to do. Originally I only enlisted in the Air Force because it was the only way I would ever be able to become a Firefighter, which was a dream I’ve had for as long as I can remember. I had no clue what fate had in store for me. I do now. You. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t thank whatever higher power that intervened and brought us together. I love you so much. I can’t even begin to describe what you and your love means to me.”

“But you could have easily booked us into a Motel 6 and saved a lot of money for more important things.”

“Besides spending a day in a luxury hotel making love to you, the only important thing I had to do with the money was to have my car overhauled and everything fixed and or upgraded on, which I’ve already done to the tune of four thousand dollars. The rest of the money is just sitting in the bank, so please accept that I want us to spend our first anniversary in luxury.”

Clark sighed deeply and was silent for a few moments. “You know, I’ve always wanted to see what this place looked like on the inside.”

“Well” Aaron responded, his eyes twinkling, “there’s only one way to find out. Grab your bag and let’s go.” He leaned over and gave Clark a quick kiss before jumping out of the car and grabbing his bag from the trunk.

Clark slowly followed suit and soon found himself staring in awe at the inside of one of the most famous casinos on the Las Vegas strip. He had to pinch himself a couple of times to convince himself that he wasn’t dreaming. He practically jumped out of his skin when Aaron put his hand on his shoulder. “We’re checked in. Here’s your key card. Ready to go see our suite?”

“Suite? You got us a suite?”

“You didn’t think we were going to spend our anniversary in a double room, did you?”

“It doesn’t matter where we spend it, as long as we spend it together.” Clark replied, tearfully as Aaron guided him to the elevator. A quick ride and a short walk down the hall and Aaron open the door to one of the most amazing sights Clark had ever seen. He got dizzy trying to look at everything at once, which elicited a laugh from Aaron.

“Relax, baby. We actually have the room for two days.”

“How did you manage to pull that one off?”

“I took a day of leave and I knew you had a three day pass and I have three days off as well. Now, isn’t there someplace you’re supposed to be right now?”

Clark looked puzzled as he thought hard, trying to remember if he had any appointments. He knew he didn’t have any dinner reservations anywhere since he didn’t know what plans Aaron had made. “Ah, not that I can think of.”

“Ah how about you’re supposed to be inside me right now, fucking my brains out?” Aaron leered at him.

“Oh, right. How could I have forgotten? Must have been the heat” He snickered as he started ripping Aaron’s clothes off. In a matter of seconds both men’s clothes were lying in piles on the floor as they wrestled on the oversized bed. After two hours of intense lovemaking, the boys found themselves relaxing in the in-room Jacuzzi. “This place is truly beautiful. I don’t know how I’ll ever be able to thank you for today, baby.”

“You just did.” Aaron said, gazing deep into his eyes. “I love you so, so much.” He said as he started to cry.

“Hey, hey, hey, what’s all this?” Clark asked gently as he kissed Aaron’s tears away.

“I’m just happier than I’ve ever been in my life. I wish we could run down to one of those wedding chapels and get married.”

Clark pulled back in shock. He knew the intensity of his feelings for Aaron, but until that moment he didn’t realize the intensity of Aaron’s feelings for him matched his own. “I wish we could too, baby. If I had my way, we’d have done it months ago.” He kissed him passionately which led to them making love in the Jacuzzi, something neither of them had ever experienced.

Tired and sated, Aaron started to climb out of the Jacuzzi to pee when his stomach rumbled loudly. “I guess someone wants some attention too.” He giggled “How about some room service for lunch, then we fuck some more?”

“How about some room service for lunch and I take a nap. I’m exhausted. You’re like the Energizer bunny. You keep going and going…”

“And you keep coming and coming” Aaron interrupted, giggling.

“Shithead” Clark said, snapping his bare ass with a wet towel.

“OW! BITCH, THAT HURT” Aaron cried out in protest rubbing his reddening ass cheek.

“Aw, want me to kiss it and make it feel better?”

“No, but you can fuck it and make it feel better.” Aaron replied without missing a beat.

“Set myself up for that one, didn’t I?” Clark asked, sheepishly.

“Yep, you did.” He yawned. “I think you’re right about the lunch-and-nap thing.” He said as he finished getting dressed. After a leisurely lunch they both curled up, Clark spooned up against Aaron’s back. The fact that Clark’s dick remained soft instead of getting hard immediately as it normally did whenever he spooned up against him was a testament to his exhaustion. Soon both men were sound asleep.

Several hours later Clark had a dream that he was getting the most incredible blowjob of his life. It was so real he could swear that he felt the warmth of the mouth on his dick. The dream ended abruptly as he exploded in orgasm. Fuck! I haven’t had a wet dream since I was fifteen. Shit! Fuck! This is embarrassing. I hope I can get out of bed and get cleaned up without waking him up. He said to himself. He started to slowly open his eyes then they flew open as he saw his rapidly deflating dick pop out of Aaron’s mouth.

“This is your alarm clock speaking. It’s almost time for dinner.”

“I don’t remember buying that particular type of alarm clock” Clark said, sleepily “but I’m glad I did.” He sat up and gave Aaron a deep kiss, licking some of his nectar from the roof of Aaron’s mouth. “How did you manage to keep that up there?”

“Remind me to show you sometime. It’s a trick I learned from eating Jell-O. Before we do anything else, I have something for you.”

“What’s that?”

He went over to his bag and pulled out a small bag and handed it to Clark.

“What’s this?”

“The beginning; it’s impossible to wrap, so I just left it in the bag.”

Clark looked at the bag dubiously “Spencer’s, huh? I’m kinda scared to open it.”

“Aw, go on, ya big sissy. It ain’t gonna bite ‘ya.” He drawled.

Clark opened the bag and pulled out the bumper sticker and read it, then started giggling, which turned into uncontrolled laughter. “God, baby, this is great. Thank you.”

“You’re welcome. Like I said, this is the beginning. Are you ready for more?”

Clark, misunderstanding what Aaron was saying, looked down at his crotch. “Uh, it’s going to be a while yet before I’ll be able to get it up again. I’ve shot four loads in the last six hours. I don’t think there’s any cum left in me.”

Aaron slapped him playfully on the shoulder. “That’s not what I’m talking about.”

“Then what are you talking about?”

“This.” He got a beautifully wrapped package out of his bag and handed it to him. Clark opened it to reveal two beautiful dragon sculptures and a nice electric candle. “I didn’t have a clue as to what to get you so I called your sister and she told me you were into dragons and metaphysical stuff. You’ll have to explain to me someday about the metaphysical stuff.”

“Baby, these dragons are, well I don’t have words to describe how beautiful they are. Thank you so much. I know just where I’m going to put them. I’m not sure about the candle, though.”

“Not to worry. I talked with the First Shirt and he told me that we can have electric candles as long as we don’t leave them plugged in when we’re not using them or not there.”

“Cool. I love it, baby. Thank you so much. Now I have something for you.” He went and grabbed a package out of his bag and handed it to him. “It’s not the most romantic gift in the world, but happy anniversary, baby.”

 Aaron reached over and grabbed Clark’s dick. “This is romantic enough.” Clark batted his hand away. He opened the box and pulled out a brand new baseball glove, the most expensive one on the market. He just looked at it in shock and awe as tears welled up inside.

“I know it’s not very romantic, but it’s the only thing I could think of to get you.”

“I-I-I don’t know what to say.” He whispered as he lovingly ran his fingers over the glove, the leather soft against his fingertips.”

“There’s more in the box.”

He looked in the box and pulled out an assortment of cloths and jars. “What’s all this?”

“The guy at Modells said that this stuff will help keep the glove in perfect condition. He said to stop by and he’ll show you how to maintain it. His name is Rob.”

“Wow. This is amazing. I never knew you had to use stuff like this to maintain the leather.”

“Most people don’t. It’s something they teach in the minor leagues. There should be something else in the box, unless I forgot to put it in there.”

Aaron looked again in the box. “No, I don’t see anything.” He started pulling the wrapping tissue out. “Oh wait, there is something el-” His voice stopped cold as he pulled out an eighty dollar set of darts and a set of shafts. “Wait a minute. These are the Extreme darts. I’ve wanted these for a long time, but every time I had the extra money, they were sold out; and Dynastar shafts? Wow. These are like the best shafts available. But what are these?” He held up a little packet of three little cylindrical objects.

“Those are adapters that will let you use your existing flights with the Dynastar shafts. At least now when you kick my ass at darts, you’ll be doing it with style.” Clark snickered.

Aaron threw himself on him. “God I don’t know how to thank you for these wonderful gifts. Oh, shit. I forgot to give you your card.”

“Fuck! I forgot to give you yours too.” Both men ran to their bags, grabbed and exchanged cards, each shedding tears over the other’s cards and the words of love hand-written within them. “There’s another card that came in the mail from my parents.” Clark said as he dried his eyes. “I was expressly forbidden to open it until today.” He grabbed the card and opened it. It was a beautiful anniversary card. The text of the card had originally said “For our son on his anniversary” but had been changed to read “For our sons on their anniversary” which set them both off again, and they hadn’t even opened the card yet. When they did finally open the card, two tickets for a dinner and show at the Star Dust fell out. “Wow; two tickets for dinner and a show at the Star Dust. I wonder who’s playing there.”

“Does it say anything on the ticket?”

Clark carefully scanned the ticket. “Yeah. Would you believe we’re going to go see the Fifth Dimension?”

Aaron jumped up and punched the air excitedly. “YES!” He shouted. “I LOVE THEM! What time is the dinner?”

“It’s in two hours.”

“Good. We have plenty of time, then.”

“Plenty of time for what?”

“Plenty of time for you to fuck my brains out, shower, fuck me again, then get ready to go.”

Clark rolled his eyes and groaned. “How did I know you were going to say that?” He said as he reached for Aaron and cooperated with the inevitable.

After a marvelous meal, which incidentally was the only thing they would remember about the dinner, that it was marvelous, not what it consisted of, they eagerly awaited the show to start, having bribed the maitre‘d into giving them one of the front tables. The show was truly magnificent, but the best part was when Marilyn McCoo was wandering through the audience she sat momentarily at their table and held each of their hands briefly as she sang to them before continuing to move through the audience. Neither of them remembered returning to the hotel room, going to bed or falling asleep they were on such a natural high. Strangely enough, they didn’t even have sex. They simply fell asleep in each other’s arms.

The next day Clark called his parents. “Mom, Aaron and I want to thank you so much for the dinner and show tickets and the card. It really meant a lot to both of us.”

“You’re welcome, sweetie. How was it?”

“To be honest, mom, I couldn’t even tell you what I had for dinner.” He glanced at Aaron who shook his head. “Aaron can’t either. We can only tell you that the food was great, but not as great as the show. Mom, we saw the Fifth Dimension and Marilyn McCoo actually sat at our table and sang to us.


“She even held our hands for a few moments as she sang to us. It was incredible.” He said as he started to choke up.

“Honey, are you crying?”

“No, but I am a little misty-eyed.”

“Let me talk to Aaron for a minute.” Clark handed the phone to Aaron.

“Mrs. Bronson, thank you so much for the tickets and the card. You have no idea how much it meant to me.”

“You’re very welcome, honey. You know Gerald and I think of you as another son and we couldn’t be happier that you and Clark are together and are happy.” That simple statement of unconditional love and acceptance caused Aaron to collapse on the floor in great, heaving sobs. “Aaron honey, are you all right?”

Clark took the phone. “Mom, what did you say to Aaron? He’s hysterical.” Clark asked as he took the sobbing Aaron into his arms.

“I simply told him that your father and I consider him another son and how happy we are that the two of you are together and are so happy. Why? What has upset him so?”

“Mom, his parents threw him out and his entire family, including his brother, sister, grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles, not to mention all of his friends, disowned him when he came out. He has no family now.”

The hell he doesn’t. Put him back on the phone.” Clark reluctantly handed the phone to the somewhat calmer Aaron.

“Aaron, honey, Clark just told me what happened with your family. I’m so, so sorry they did that to you. That was so wrong of them. Know this, no matter what, you’ll always be a part of our family and will always have a home here with us whenever you need it. That’s a promise.”

Aaron sniffled. “I don’t know what to say. Thank you is so completely inadequate.” He whispered into the phone.

“Thank you is more than adequate. Now pull yourself together and enjoy the rest of your day. We love you both. Bye, bye.” She hung up. Aaron struggled valiantly to pull himself together.

“What’d she say?”

“Well, it looks like I have a home and a family now.” He replied with a sniffle.

Clark pulled him into a rib-crushing hug. “And you always will, baby. We’re your family now.” He reassured him.

Driving back to the base neither man said much. They were simply content to be in each other’s presence. After getting off the interstate they held hands until just before reaching the main gate. As they approached it a strange occurrence happened. Normally, because of the registration stickers on his bumper, Aaron was waved through. This time he was stopped. “Is there a problem?” He asked the cop on the gate.

“No, but if you want to avoid one, the two of you might want to wear shirts with collars for the next few days.” He said with a wink before waving them on through.

Aaron quickly looked in the rear view mirror. “Holy shit, we’re so fucked!” I never even thought about the hickeys.

“Oh, fuck, Aaron. I’m so sorry. God I hope he doesn’t turn us in.”

“There’s no way anyone could prove we gave them to each other. For all they know we were up at the Chicken Ranch.”

“If anyone asks, that’s what we’ll tell them.”

“Works for me” Aaron replied as he pulled into the parking lot. “You know, it just occurred to me. You couldn’t have picked a better time to give me this glove.”

“Why’s that?”

“The day after tomorrow I try out for the base baseball team.”

“Wonderful. What time?”


“I’ll see if I can take my dinner break then and come support you.”

“There are other ways you can support me, you know.”

“Yeah, yeah, yeah. Later. I’m hungry.”

“I’ve got something you can eat.”

“That’s dessert. I need to eat my regular meal first.”

“Race you to the chow hall.”

“You’re on!”

During dinner Clark tried to figure out the best way to ask Aaron about the estrangement between him and his family. He finally decided the best way was to simply come out and ask. “You know, we never really talked about it. Do you want to talk about it now?”

“Talk about what?”

“What happened between you and your family. It’s okay if you don’t.” Aaron took in a deep breath and let it out slowly as the light in his eyes dimmed, indicating his pain. “I’m sorry, baby. If I had known it was going to bring you this much pain, I wouldn’t have said anything.”

“No, it’s okay. Let’s get out of here and go for a drive, maybe out towards Lake Mead, somewhere where we can be alone and undisturbed.” An hour later they were parked along the shore of Lake Mead.

Clark took a hold of Aaron’s chin and gently turned his head to look at him. “Baby, I want you to know that I’m here for you and that you can tell me anything, and nothing you say will make me love you less. But I only want you to tell me what you feel comfortable telling me. If it hurts too much, stop. We don’t have to talk about anything you don’t want to talk about. Okay?”

“Okay” He sighed an endearing, child-like sigh. “It was my senior year in high school. My baseball team had just won the state championship for the first time in like fifteen years or so.” His eyes took on a faraway look.

“I bet you pitched that game.”

“Yeah, I pitched a no-hitter. The whole town went crazy. They had a special dinner in our honor and one of my teammates had a big party at his house. I really didn’t want to go.”

“How come” Clark asked softly.

“I didn’t have a date, not that it mattered. I was never much of a partier. Anyway, about an hour before the party my former best friend” Clark winced at the pain in Aaron’s voice when he said ‘former best friend’ “stopped by and wanted to know why I wasn’t ready. I told him I wasn’t going to the party. He told me I had to go because we wouldn’t have won the championship without me and that if it was because I didn’t have a date he’d fix me up with his sister. He wouldn’t take no for an answer, so I decided to come out to him. Needless to say he didn’t take it very well. He started screaming and yelling at me, then stormed out of the house. My sister came into my room and asked what had happened so I told her. She looked at me like I was some kind of disgusting insect that needed to be squashed out of existence.” Silent tears were flowing down his cheeks. Clark pulled him in close and kissed him lightly on his forehead. “I didn’t know what to do, so I threw a few clothes into a bag and got the fuck out of there. I drove around for a few when my dad called. He had gotten a call from Jerry’s father claiming that I made a move on Jerry, which was a total lie. I explained that he was pissed because he wanted me to take his sister to the party and I refused. He claimed I refused because I was gay. I told him it had nothing to do with the fact that I was gay but everything to do with the fact that I was eighteen, she was twelve and that there was going to be alcohol at the party and I didn’t want to get into any kind of trouble.”

“And you basically outted yourself to him.”

“Yeah, and I told him that I wasn’t the same person I was before I came out, that I was a better person because I was no longer hiding and lying about who I was. My father wrote the book on homophobia.”

“And that’s when he threw you out.”

“Not only that, but he also called the school about getting me expelled to keep me away from my brother and sister. Not that it mattered. They, at least my sister, made her feelings perfectly clear, and since I had already accumulated enough credits to graduate, they gave me my diploma early, so I went straight to the recruiting office and signed up.”

“What about your brother?”

“I never got the chance to talk with him, but he made his feelings perfectly clear as well. Everyone had their cell phone numbers changed and every letter I wrote to my parents and my brother and sister were returned unopened.”

“I’ve heard stories about the mental link between twins, especially identical twins. Have you ever tried to reach your brother that way, to try to get a sense of what’s going on inside his head?”

“I don’t need the link to know that. I know what’s going on inside his head.”

“Do you? Do you really?”

Aaron was quiet for a moment before responding “No, not absolutely for certain.”

“Why don’t you give it a try?”

“What good would it do?”

“At least you would know for sure.”

“I guess.” Aaron closed his eyes and steadied his breathing. He mentally reached out for his brother’s mind. A few seconds later his eyes popped back open, wide with outrage. “What the fuck!”

“What?” Clark asked, surprised at Aaron’s outburst and the expression on his face. “What’s the matter? What are you getting?”

“I’m getting confusion and feelings of devastation and abandonment from him. What the fuck! He’s the one who abandoned me, not the other way around. What fucking right does he have to be confused and devastated?”

Either Aaron’s misreading his brother or there’s something else going on here, something he’s not seeing. “Baby” he began carefully “is it possible that you misread him or that your own feelings of abandonment are interfering with your senses?”

Aaron’s anger subsided as he considered the possibility of what Clark was saying.

“I suppose it’s possible. Guess I have to live with the fact that I’ll never know for sure.”

Clark wrapped his arms around him. “I’m sorry, baby. I shouldn’t have pushed the issue.”

“It’s okay. You were only trying to help and I love you for it.” Aaron snuggled into Clark’s strong arms and allowed himself to be comforted.

Meanwhile, in the Suarez household a loud thud and cry was heard from Justin’s room. Alison told the friend she was on the phone with that she would be right back and rushed into Justin’s room to find him sitting on the floor holding his head. “Justin, what’s wrong?” she asked as she stared into his blank eyes. “Justin, come on. Snap out of it. JUSTIN! SNAP OUT OF IT!” Slowly recognition came back into his eyes and he closed them, sitting back against his bed. “Justin, what’s going on? What just happened?”

“I don’t know. I was just sitting here studying when all of a sudden I felt a strong surge of anger. Alison, I could swear Aaron was in my head, that it was his anger I was feeling.”

“But why would you be feeling his anger? He turned his back on us, not the other way around.” She said, not knowing that she was echoing Aaron’s words.

“I don’t know. There was something else. Something I can’t put my finger on. What if someone is deliberately trying to keep us apart?”

“Oh, you and your conspiracy theories. Nobody is doing any such thing.” She responded, chidingly, but inwardly wondering if there might not be some truth to what he was saying.

“This whole shit just doesn’t make any sense. Why would he just up and leave like that without saying anything to us?”

Do I tell him or not? Might as well as I doubt we’ll ever see him again. “Justin” she began slowly “there’s something you should know about the night he left.”

“I know he got into some kind of fight with Jerry, but I don’t know what or why.”

“You remember about Eddie’s party, right; the one right after the dinner to honor the baseball team?”

“Yeah, what about it?”

“Aaron didn’t want to go. Jerry assumed it was because he didn’t have a date and tried to get him to take his sister.”

“But his sister was only twelve or thirteen, somewhere around there.”

“Twelve, and there was going to be alcohol there. Being eighteen, Aaron didn’t want to get into trouble so he refused to take her. Jerry wouldn’t take no for an answer, so Aaron told him.”

“Told him what?” Silence. “Told him what, Alison?” he insisted.

She took a deep breath. “Justin, Aaron’s gay. That’s what the fight was about. Aaron came out to Jerry and Jerry couldn’t handle it.”

Justin was silent for a few moments as he digested that information. “Wow. That must have hurt Aaron pretty badly. Wait a minute. He didn’t hit Aaron, did he?” He started to get up, angry. “I should kick his fucking ass all over this city.”

“No, he didn’t hit him. He just yelled and screamed at him then stormed out. But that’s not all of it. I ran into his room and he was on the bed crying. When he told me what happened and that he was gay I didn’t know what to do or say. I wanted to go kick Jerry’s ass for hurting him like he did. Aaron apparently mistook my not saying anything because he said something like “I’ve lost you too”, grabbed some clothes and was out the door before I could catch him. That was the last I saw him except that day at school when he was waiting for us. We should have talked to him then.”

“I know. I was just so hurt and pissed off I didn’t want to see him. Now it’s too late and that’s a mistake I’ll regret for the rest of my life.”

“So what do we do know.”

“We find him. Somehow, some way, we find him and get him to talk to us.”

“You’re okay with him being gay?

“He’s my brother, and even though he’s cut us out of his life I still love him.”

“Me too, Justin, me too.”

They were both startled to hear their father’s voice at the door. “You will not go looking for him. He is no longer a part of this family. I have sworn out orders of protection against him for both of you so if he comes within two hundred feet of either of you, or this house, he will be arrested, prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law and sent to prison where I’m sure he’ll enjoy himself thoroughly.”

“Peter, what have you done?” their mother asked.

“What I had to do to protect Justin and Alison from that pervert and child molester.”

“He’s neither a pervert nor a child molester. How can you do that to your own son?”

“He’s no longer our son, Margaret. He’s been legally disowned and disinherited.”

“YOU BASTARD” She shouted as she slapped him in the face as hard as she could before locking herself in her bedroom.

Justin and Alison looked at their father in shock, then at each other. Justin got up and extended his hand to Alison. “Come on, Alison.”

“Where are you going?” their father demanded.

“Anywhere but here” Justin spat.

“You two are not going anywhere.”

“FUCK YOU!” Justin shouted as they rushed down the stairs and headed out, leaving their father standing there in a state of shock.

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