ONCE AGAIN: Some readers may find this subject disturbing.
He knows that he will not fit in here. He did not fit in there. He only ever felt like a part of something when they were together. And now even that is gone, ripped away by those who will not even try to understand. And now alone, in this strange place, he does not stand a chance. He is sure of this. Of nothing but this.
Experience tempers expectation. At least for him.
“Come on, Jerry,” his mother says, looking over the back seat while she waits in traffic. Looking to where he sits, his legs folded to his chest, arms wrapped protectively around his knees. He will not meet her stare.
He looks at spattered raindrops as they slide down the window’s glass in arbitrary pattens. They meet and diverge, meet again, diverge again. He tries to think on this philosophically, gain some meaning from these random water droplets dancing before him, but he cannot. Not here. Not now.
He focuses instead on the rhythms of the wipers as they screech back and forth, back and forth on the glass; rubber rapes the windshield. He leans his head back, and he closes his eyes, and he imagines them together.
Warm lips on his neck. A secure embrace, swathing him, as ecstasy swallows them both. It drugs him, swells around him like the warm summer surf, enveloping his body, tickling his every cell, stroking the inner core of his mind.
No where else but there. That’s where he wants to be.
His mother’s voice intrudes, “ . . . give it a chance . . .”
Hands reaching. Hands on his face. Hands clasped. More.
“ . . . a fresh start . . .”
Sweat droplets around his hairline, dripping down his back. A feeling so intense, like fire, burning him from the inside out, soul, organs, sinew, muscle, finally skin.
He is no freak, just a boy in love. And he knows, with a certainty he has never known before: Mr. Harley loved him back.