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Uni

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Uni

By Trab

No matter how many times I?d rehearsed, I had been unable to tell my dad. It had been wonderful to be home, but now, at the point of my return to Uni, I was worried to death. Sleepless all night, I had packed my things. Dad had made breakfast, but I couldn?t eat a thing. If I didn?t say something now, I was damned sure I never would, and I?d be leaving home forever. In desperation, hoping to be forced to break through my own fears, I dropped a hint. Then another. And then?

I blurted out that Curt is my boyfriend but, in terror, I couldn?t look at dad. I had on the rest of my winter garb, and as I heard his, ?Oh,? I walked away, legs trembling, at the point of collapse.

I barely heard him when he said, ?Goodbye, son. I love you, boy.?

Thank God I heard him. I raced back into his arms, my eyes just as wet as his, knowing I was only going to Uni after all.

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Wow. I never had a helping of homage before. Let me tell you, it's a lot better going down than porridge! (Trab's flash is in response to my flash "Departure" posted in the previous thread: http://forums.awesomedude.com/index.php?showtopic=4338

Thank you, Trab, for your lovely backflash. You are completely in sync with what I had imagined to be in the mind of the son, David, and I think both he and his father are quite relieved at the outcome. But wait: what about Curt?...

Journey, for Trab

by Merkin

Curt paced nervously along the curbing in front of the coffee shop. David was late and he was getting worried. When David had called earlier it was to say that he intended to tell his dad about them before leaving home, and now it was way past the time for David to pick him up. What had gone wrong?

Just as Curt was about to flip open his phone to try to call, he saw the familiar car pull up. Quickly he yanked the door open, tossed his bag into the back, and slid into the passenger seat. "Trouble? I was really getting worrried."

David leaned over and they kissed intensely, each communicating both relief and hunger at seeing the other.

"No. It's all good, believe me. Here." David handed Curt a large paper bag.

"What's this? It smells delicious."

"Muffins."

"Muffins? I thought we were going to have breakfast in the coffeeshop."

"My dad and I made them while we talked. I told him all about you." David started the car, made a u-turn, and headed back the way he had come.

"Where are we going? You're going the wrong way."

"Relax," said David, "we don't have to register until late tomorrow. I'm taking you back home to stay the night."

"Wha--"

"Dad wants to meet you. He says if you're important enough that I can't eat breakfast with him, then he wants to cook dinner for both of us and find out for himself."

______

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Sweet. Thanks, Merkin. :wav:

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Excuse me while I wipe my eyes...tears of joy from not only the stories, but the gestures of authors welcoming each others contributions.

Well done guys. It is a Happy New Year!

:wav:

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Three flash stories make the start of a collaborative novel, methinks!

Colin :wav:

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Is anyone preparing the next bit, or can I have a go??

So long as Merkin and Trab don't mind... :wav:

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Whoops. These old bones like to sleep through the North American night, and I just saw your post, Bruin. By all means have a go. Unlike Disney, these characters need no license. All are welcome to pitch in, wouldn't you agree, Trab?

James

(BTW the dad's name is Jonathan, if you need it)

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Thanks James. For some reason I thought his name was Kelvin, but I'm glad to be properly introduced!

You okay with this, Trab?

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Mary's Viewpoint

by Bruin Fisher

with apologies and thanks to Merkin and Trab whose bandwagon I'm leaping onto.

I sometimes wish we'd had a daughter. It's not that I don't love David, I love him more than life itself, but as he's grown up he's developed a special and very wonderful bond with Jonathan that leaves me feeling left out sometimes. I'm not jealous, well, perhaps I am, just a little, but those two have something so precious together, something just for the two of them, and I would give anything to share it with them. Perhaps if we had a daughter it would be me she'd be that close to.

There's a lot I can't do since my MS got bad, but I still have eyes in my head. I see my boys, father and son, and I know when something's wrong. For months now there's been a barrier between them. It's hurting both of them and I can't see any way I can help because neither of them is talking about it.

Our David's been home from university for the holiday and it's been wonderful to see him, but it hasn't been like old times. It was bound to happen that he'd grow away from us a little, it's the first time he's lived away from home and I suppose it's good that he's developing his own life, new friends and all that, but I think it's more than that. Something's changed. He's been tense all holiday, and Jonathan can see it as well as I can, and it's upsetting him. He doesn't often lose his cool but he was quite short with me yesterday for no good reason that I could think of. This thing with David is breaking his heart like it's breaking mine.

*********************************

This morning David left early. He popped into my room to say goodbye and then went down to breakfast. The smell of cooking was wafting upstairs and I imagined the two of them across the kitchen table talking while they ate. But it wasn't long before Jonathan came up with a tray for me and it turns out David didn't stop to eat the meal he'd cooked for him. Jon was looking shaken and after he'd sorted my pillows so I could sit up in bed to eat, he stayed and sat in the armchair that faces the bed. And for a while he just watched me eat, and I could be patient. I knew he'd talk eventually, but I certainly wasn't prepared for what he said.

He said it like it was nothing, like it didn't matter, but he just sat there and told me that my son, my David, is homosexual. Well, I yelled at him, and threw the tray at him. Made an awful mess, but I don't care. How can he say that? My David's not queer. He can't be ? that's not how we brought him up. I don't know what's got into Jonathan, he's been behaving odd for ages. He's not the man I married and I'm thinking perhaps he's having an affair. I wish I was dead.

***********************************

Okay, I've calmed down a bit, now. Jon cleared up the mess and I cried a lot and he hugged me and cried with me and I wailed at him about how I'd always wanted a happy life for David, and pictured him with his own home and his own family around him, and it's true I've always wanted grandchildren, and that set me off worse than ever and he just held me for ages until I was all cried out. But I know I'm being irrational about it ? if he's queer he can't help it, and he's still the same David, and I still want the best for him, still want him to be happy. But it's so hard to think of him being gay. I've heard what people say about queers and I want to protect him from that. Why couldn't he have been normal? What did we do wrong?

Jonathan says I need to pull myself together and that we didn't do anything wrong. David's the way he is and we need to accept him and it mustn't change how we love him. I can do it, I know I can, but it's a shock and it's taking time.

********************************

He's just come back up with a new tray of breakfast for me, and he's told me David is bringing his boyfriend back here and they'll be arriving soon. They're going to stay till tomorrow. I don't know how I should feel about it, I'm going to have to lean on Jon for this ? he'll know how to deal with it. He and David are so close, it must have been an awful shock for him and yet he seems to be taking it so well. Did he already know, I wonder? Or guess?

********************************

My David, my darling boy, has just brought Curt up to introduce him. I'm so glad he did. He loves Curt and Curt loves him. You can see it in their faces, clear as day. That's all that matters, really, isn't it? They love each other. If either of them is to be happy they need to be together. I can deal with that. He's such a nice boy, Curt, I'm pleased for David, it doesn't matter that he's gay, it matters that he's found someone who loves him.

Jonathan's going to carry me downstairs so I can share the evening with them in front of the fire. I want to get to know Curt, find out where he's from, and about his family, and what he wants for the future. It's going to be okay. I think so.

*********************************

We've had a lovely evening. Jonathan cooked a roast. David carried me back up here when I got tired. When he laid me back on the bed I told him I'm glad for him and Curt, and I told him we'll always love him and support him, and I said I'm thinking of Curt as a son now. I got all that out without crying but he didn't do so well so then I hugged him and cried with him.

The best thing about the evening was watching Jon and David together. They're back to their old relationship. And I'm back to being jealous of it. I'm so proud of both of them.

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That's absolutely... stupendous! First Trab gives life to David, and now you have given a whole new dimension to a tale that started out as a private little interaction between father and son, both somewhat two-dimensional because the crucial backstory was missing, and here you've patched the whole thing up and given it wings!

I loved the part where Mary throws a hissy-fit in her fierce denial, oh so authentically, and then moves it up a notch: I don't know what's got into Jonathan, he's been behaving odd for ages. He's not the man I married and I'm thinking perhaps he's having an affair. I wish I was dead. Just wonderful.

I'm so glad you took this on, Bruin. I can't wait to see if someone else out there has new layers already primed on a palette for this increasingly complex portrait of a changing family.

James Merkin

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OK, without being invited, I'll crash the party. Hope no one minds.

Curt

by Cole Parker

“This feels weird.”

David snuggled tighter against Curt. “What does?” he asked.

“This. Being in bed with you, a real bed. And being in your house. With everyone in the house knowing we’re here, together, like this. Really weird.”

David laughed. All the tensions he’d been feeling were gone. He could tell that his mother still had some adjusting to do, but things were good. Very, very good.

“David?”

“Hmmm?”

Curt wiggled, and David loosened his grip on him. Curt quickly kissed David’s nose, causing the larger boy to grin, and then slid up so he was sitting against the headboard. David looked up at him, then slid up too. “Something wrong?” he asked.

“Not wrong. I just have so many feelings and thoughts bouncing around inside me right now, and can’t just lie still.”

“Lying still wasn’t exactly what I was planning.”

Curt grinned, and seeing the look on David’s face, ended up laughing while he nodded. “Me too,” he said. “But can we talk a minute, first?”

David reached over and took his hand. “Go ahead. Uh, just don’t take too long.” And he laughed. Curt joined him because when David laughed, his whole world got brighter and he couldn’t help himself.

He was silent then, and David, being David, simply waited. Finally, when Curt was ready, he spoke.

“I’m really happy. I’m especially happy for you. Your parents now know and have accepted you; me; us. I know what that means to you.”

He paused again, and still David waited. Curt was like this. He took his time expressing his thoughts, and it was just another of the many things David found endearing about him.

When the pause lasted longer than he expected it to, David asked, “What is it, Curt?” He asked it softly, and squeezed his hand when he did.

Curt sighed. “Well, I just hope…” He sat up straighter. More forcefully then, he said, “I just hope my family is as understanding.”

“What do you mean?” David was confused. “They know about you. You’ve been out to them for over a year. I don’t understand.”

Curt looked down. “They know I’m gay. It took them a long time to accept the fact. They do, now, but in an academic sort of way. I’ve never had a boyfriend before, I’ve never taken a gay boy home to meet them. My father is, well, you have to meet him to see. He’s not an easy man. And my mother can be very sharp, sometimes rude. But as difficult as they are, my older brother is worse. He still makes sarcastic comments to me. He’s never really been the same since I came out to them. He acts sort of like he’s personally offended that I’m gay.”

David was quiet for a moment, then asked, “So you’re not sure what they’ll say when you tell them that when you’re in college, you’ll be rooming with your boyfriend?”

Curt shook his head. “Worse. I’m not sure I can tell them. Dad’s paying for college. He might tell me he’s not going to pay my way if I'm going to be sleeping with another boy for four years, that I have to have a straight roommate. Or, maybe my brother will talk to him and my father’ll end up saying he’s not going to pay for college at all because I've now made it apparent I'm just going away to school so I can be gay.”

“So you’re thinking of not telling them? Really?”

“Yes. But it feels wrong, somehow. I should be open and honest with them. I was when I told them about me, and even if they weren’t real happy, I was still proud of myself. But now? This? I’m not sure what to do.”

David could hear the uncertainty, the pain in Curt’s voice. He slid over next to him, put his hands on the sides of his boyfriend’s face and slightly turned it toward him. Then he kissed him.

It was a long, slow, deeply moving, very personal kiss, one communicating with Curt, sending a message that couldn’t be misinterpreted.

When he was done, David pulled back a little, then slid down in bed and looked up at Curt with open, questioning eyes. Curt smiled, a little tenuously, and slid down next to David.

“Whatever happens, Curt, we’ll be figuring it out together. And my family’s on our side. It’ll work out. We’ll make it work out.”

“I know. I just worry, is all. But it’s just one more thing in front of us to overcome. We’ll have a lot of that. But I’m not afraid, just worrying. Talking to you helps.”

David smiled. “You do worry. And it makes you cute. You know you’re cute, don’t you?”

David’s smile always improved Curt’s mood. Curt tended to go through mood swings, frequently becoming upset and edgy. David had become a stabilizing force in his life, one he’d come to rely on. Now, seeing that smile, feeling the warmth of David’s body next to him, he felt himself relaxing. David saw the change.

“It’ll be OK. Did you want to just snuggle and go to sleep?”

Curt grinned, and slipped his hands under the covers.

“Uh, not just yet.”

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Good heavens. Look what happens when I'm tied up doing rally related business. Terrific developments.

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It just keeps getting better and better. The boys are beginning to have terrific personalities. Plus now we have a whole 'nother family to look forward to.

Er, Cole, no one was invited -- and for sure no one is excluded. You are a most welcome gate crasher. (That's how I got to all my best parties, when I was a young guy like you.)

James

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Yeah, right. Don't get in an age contest with Des or me, James. You'll get your ass stomped. Or breathed heaily upon as neither of us are up for much more than that.

I do like the idea of expanding the tale of Curt's family, however. I think something can be done with his homophobic brother and arrogant father.

Hope someone steps in.

C

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Yeah, right. Don't get in an age contest with Des or me, James. You'll get your ass stomped. Or breathed heaily upon as neither of us are up for much more than that.

I do like the idea of expanding the tale of Curt's family, however. I think something can be done with his homophobic brother and arrogant father.

Hope someone steps in.

C

I can cough heavily if that helps.

Does anyone else realise that Pecman is going to go ballistic when he sees this story. It has now become the ultimate multi-point of view story, not only have each of the main characters now had their fifteen minutes of first person fame, but with Coles contribution, we now have third person as well.

What's more important is that you have all made the multi-POV work to the story's advantage.

This is great stuff guys, who is next? (I'm snowed under with work, or I would have a go myself.)

:wav:

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Brandon

by Colin Kelly

Brandon sat staring at the TV. If someone had asked him what show he'd tuned to, he wouldn't have been able to tell them. All he could think about was Curt. His gay brother Curt.

His faggot brother Curt. That's the part that scared him. Brandon knew that their relatives would never accept Curt the faggot. They'd shun him, and shun their mom and dad as well. For himself Brandon didn't care about that part, about being shunned by them. He had little use for their relatives. They were assholes, narrow minded, bigoted people. But they were his parent's families, and his mom and dad would be devastated if the relatives found out about Curt and cut them off.

It wasn't that Curt was gay or not. What pissed Brandon off was that he'd decided to come out to their folks first, then afterwards to him. Why couldn't Curt have talked to him first? That was just like Curt, always going off half-cocked, doing what he wanted without ever thinking it through first, and never coming and asking his big brother for advice.

What did their folks really think about Curt's announcement? Brandon didn't have a clue.

Mom was very opinionated, she made up her own mind about everything, and made sure everyone always knew exactly what she was thinking. She told Curt that being gay didn't change how she felt about him, he was still her baby boy. Geez, what did that mean? Curt was 18 years old, and he was still Mom's baby?

Dad was something else. He was always a "man's man" who kept his opinions to himself, but didn't give an inch anytime. He was simple, and straightforward, and no-nonsense. His response to Curt was that it was his life and he could make something positive out of it or not. Did that mean Dad was okay with it or not?

Things would become a lot more of an issue if Curt ever brought home a boyfriend. God, that sounded so wrong, Curt having a boyfriend. Why the hell did he decide to be gay? Did he meet someone who confused him, twisted him, seduced him, turned him gay? No, that wasn't Curt. Like Mom, he was just as opinionated and made up his own mind, and he just couldn't keep things to himself. If he was gay it was something he'd decided -- or as Curt had put it, discovered -- on his own.

Brandon leaned back and closed his eyes. What did he think about Curt being gay? It was a lot harder for him to define his own opinion than to understand his folk's opinions. Did he approve? That was tough. On one hand, he felt to his core that it was wrong. But this was Curt, his little bro. They'd been best friends while growing up. Curt had attended every one of Brandon's basketball games and been his biggest fan. Brandon had been Curt's protector whenever he got into a scrap. He opened his eyes and shook his head. He just couldn't abandon Curt. He wouldn't abandon him. He was still Curt, he was still his little bro, and he probably needed his big bro to be his protector even more now.

He grabbed the remote and shut off the TV. He'd been acting... what, brusque? ...yeah, that was the word, he'd been brusque to Curt ever since he made his announcement. He owed Curt a phone call. He had to tell him that his big bro was still there for him, that he didn't give a damn if he was gay. He grinned. He just knew that Curt was waiting for that phone call. And he realized that he'd been waiting to make that call.

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This is the best literary adventure ever. I'm walking around, at work, with a smile on my face that won't go and my colleagues are all looking at me funny. Do I care? They've always thought I'm weird anyway, so it doesn't make a lot of difference. But I'm enjoying my first day back at work, which is a first for me!

Fantastic, Cole and Colin!

And thanks, Merkin and Trab for getting us started!

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Interesting. So Curt's older brother is a much more complex character that an earlier writer had led us to believe...

Good one, Colin. If I'm not mistaken, the first new writing you've had time to do in quite a while thanks to your Uni. Even more cause for applause!

James

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Interesting. So Curt's older brother is a much more complex character that an earlier writer had led us to believe...

Good one, Colin. If I'm not mistaken, the first new writing you've had time to do in quite a while thanks to your Uni. Even more cause for applause!

James

Cole was writing from Curt's POV. What he wrote shows how brothers, no matter how close, can fail to understand each other at some point and it causes a rift. I saw Brandon as more complex, and struggling with Curt's announcement that he was gay. It took almost a year for Brandon to finish resolving his feelings about Curt, and how he was upset that Curt hadn't told him before telling their folks. Also, when I read how Curt described his mother I saw him as being much the same as her. That's in part because he had come out to his folks when he knew it would be a huge shock to them, and in part because when he was talking with David it seemed clear to me that he is planning to introduce David to them as his boyfriend.

James, your story and the additions to it are wonderful. It moved me, and I reacted to it by deciding to describe Brandon's feelings. (I hope my choice of 'Brandon' as Curt's brother's name is OK; it was the first name that came to mind when I read Cole's section and it just seemed to fit.)

Now we need someone to write from Curt's mother's POV, and someone to write from Curt's father's POV. :wave: Hello, hello out there! :wave:

BTW, this is the first thing I've written and completed in a long time. School has been my only focus, but maybe this summer I'll have time to finish the half dozen or so short stories I've started. It took me about 30 minutes to finish my first draft of 'Brandon', and in aggregate a few minutes of editing/polishing after rereading it several times (including some changes soon after it was posted).

Colin :icon_geek:

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