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Life on the Farm

by Joe Writer Man

Chapter 20

I slept hard (pun intended) last night. I didn't even dream.

My next visitor was Kevin, dragging his blanket. He crawled up into bed and cuddled in close. Thankfully, his knee missed my fully elongated tool as he crawled mostly onto my chest. He looked into my eyes. In his, I saw only love and devotion. Without any advance notice, he leaned down and kissed my lips, "I love you, Jimmy." Then he wrapped his arms around my neck and about squeezed it off my shoulders. That earned him a moderated version of a tickle fest. Soon, he was squealing to his hearts' content, and I was getting smacked around with his 4 year old arms as he tried to get away. Then I let him go when I felt a trickle of water, very warm water at that, cascade across my stomach. He hurriedly got up and went running into the bathroom. Sheesh. One day I'll learn to stop when he starts screeching!

When I headed into the bathroom, Eric was busily aiming Kevin's wand into the toilet as the youngster went on and on and on again how I'd tickled him awake. Eric was having quite the time, since Kevin was totally wound up like a Slinky toy. Yeah, Thomas had one of those things from his earlier days. It was pretty kewl actually.

"Since you got him all excited... you get to give him a bath, oh Pee Boy." Eric snickered, then he and Luke performed a disappearing act, leaving me alone with a 4 year old holding his pajamas in his outstretched hand. This same 4 year old had this most innocent expression on his face, but before 30 seconds had passed... an ornery smile enveloped him completely.

I was a bit hesitant to disrobe so that my wand was fully exposed to him. Thinking for a way to buy some time, so that it would go down on its own, I turned around, leaned over and got the water to going. That didn't work, "Kevin, go get your clothes... you can dress in here after we're done."

His innocence shone through once again, like a brilliant light! He then expressed one simple little monosyllable word, "No."

Something had to give.

Then an idea came to my mind. Clever.

Just like nothing was wrong, I lowered my underwear, kicked them aside, and helped him into the bathtub. I reached into the cabinet to retrieve his toy boat. I sat it down in the water and turned on the switch so that it would go wherever he wanted it to go. I slipped in behind him. He was enthralled. I scooted him up so that he was sitting between my knees. I reached around him, pushed the boat in many different directions – while – and here's where my idea comes in... While one hand was busy playing, my other hand reached down to that which designates me male, grasped hold and went to playing myself. When the moment arrived (not two minutes later), I leaned over his shoulder to keep him occupied... I exclaimed a soft well placed "Ohhh... lookie!" That set Kevin off giggling! I laughed, too, but for different reasons.

Rest of bath – unremarkable.

We'd already done most of the hard chores last night, so morning chores didn't take very long. In fact, we had them all done just before sunup.

Just as we were headed into the house after doing the 'hated' chicken coop, a low rumbling rolling thunder was heard coming in from the west. I looked back just in time to see a huge cloud-to-ground lightning bolt split the morning serenity. Thankfully, it was off in the distance... but still, my butthole puckered closed and I took in a deep breath.

Luke and Eric, meanwhile, were intent on getting breakfast. With their pushing me along, I didn't have time to 'worry'. When we got in the ante room, we all stripped to our underwear, and walked in. Normally, we go upstairs to change into jeans, but Dad motioned for us to take our seats, so we did.

Simultaneously, as we said the "Amen", a brilliant flash of light shattered the room. Immediately, a crash-bang clap of thunder startled the hell out of everybody, even Dad's eyes went wide open. The lights also went out. Pure darkness enveloped the room, save for even more lightning and thunder. Thankfully, the lights came right back on.

Dad and Thomas got up, walked around to each of the windows to make sure something on our property hadn't been struck by the high energy "scare me shitless" lightning bolts. When they returned to the table, Dad pointed my way, wiggled his finger, and said, "Eat up." Then he smiled. Then he pointed just past my face. The rest of the room, Mom included, started snickering... what was all that about?

Eric grabbed my arm and pulled it 'down'. I'd been holding my hand up; grasping my fork like my life depended on it. I must admit I had to smile – and, immediately felt a blush traveling from the tips of my hairs down to the ends of my toes. They began laughing like crazy, even Mom... of all people... sheesh.

The 'moment' was taken away when a brilliant flash of white-blue light completely took over the room... and immediately the crash of thunder took over all else. The lights immediately went out... and this time they did not come right back on.

By the time the next lightning bolt struck somewhere... I fell to the floor and crawled under the table. I was shaking so bad that I couldn't sit still.

Thomas, knowing that I'm petrified of storms, reached down, took hold of my arm and pulled me from under the table – forcefully - I was NOT volunteering. Then he did something he hadn't done before – he pulled me into his arms and held on tightly, sat down, and rocked me gently.

Damn it.

I was crying like a god damned baby... deep racking sobs had taken over my body – all of it... not one single cell was calm, or calming down.

Thomas shifted around... my arms went around his. I pulled myself in tighter and tighter and tighter – as another serious round of storm nearly shook the house to pieces – in fact, the chandelier like lighting fixture hanging over the table – was jingling (a little bit... realistically, the house wasn't in any danger of collapsing – I just thought it would, you know, crash all around us and take my family out – I was positive! Kid stuff, I know, damn it!).

The next thing I knew, or realized, or felt... was... I was being carried up the stairs in Thomas' big strong arms. He turned right, went into the bathroom, closed the door, then held my head up high while he took off my shorts, and then sat me on the toilet. He said, "I'll be right back. Don't go anywhere...the storm is letting up. I'll be right back, promise."

When I nodded, he took off. I felt need, so I took care of that... then just as the last one was falling, Thomas returned, carrying two large lit candles, closed the door, leaned over the bathtub and started the water running. I tore off tissue paper... it was when I reached around that the full realization about what had actually happened sank in. I wanted to die right then and there, but Thomas very gently said, "James, I was afraid of storms, too. I still don't like them... they give me the willies. Truth be told, I, too, was shaking and rattling around in my skin. That storm was a doozie, if I ever saw one, and I've seen many in my lifetime." I vigorously nodded, then, feeling more need I took care of that, and then felt empty. Thomas, reaching for a towel from the cabinet, "Here's what we need to do... don't be embarrassed... it's happened to the best of us..."

After getting dressed, again, I went back downstairs, again. Mom was wiping off the table. Dad was walking back and forth in the kitchen, carrying Kevin in his arms, whispering that everything was going to be okay, and that he was safe and sound, and when he saw me, he drew me into his arms, squeezed firmly, and said the same thing to me. I believed him.

Eric and Luke were sitting at the breakfast nook table playing a game of Spades, chattering away like nothing had happened. Eric did turn to me and asked, "Are you okay, now, Bro?"

"Yeah, I think so. I'm, uhm, sorry, you know. I... I..." I couldn't think of what else to say, except, I turned to Dad and asked, "Dad, can I go check on Coltrane... it sounds like the storm has let up, please?"

"Put on your mud galoshes. Be careful around your horse. He's probably very skittish. He doesn't like storms either. Be careful. Watch where you're stepping. And James?"

"Yes, Sir."

"I think the rainstorms are over. A front came through this morning. The weather people said that we were in for it. The front has passed. I expect it to get hotter than blazes later on today. And James..."

"Yes, Sir."

"You aren't a baby. Instead, you are afraid of storms... I didn't realize just how afraid you are of them. Your brother, Thomas, is afraid of them, too. Don't let him tell you anything different. As he's gotten older, he's better at dealing with them. Everybody's afraid of Something. Don't be ashamed. There's no reason to be."

"Dad, can I ask you a question?"

"Sure you can. You can ask questions all you want and need to, Son. That's how we learn things."

"Uhm, well, are you afraid of anything?"

"Yes I am, actually. Likely, you'll see me running to the house... creepy crawlers... the dang things..." The most intense expression passed through my Dad's being. Very quietly, almost reverently, grunted, "Snakes." He then patted my back, put Kevin down, and as he walked away, I heard him say, "If God ever made a mistake... it was putting those dang things on the Earth... curse you Adam and Eve!"

I got dressed in the old coveralls we wear to clean the chicken house and other stinky chores around the place. As I walked out the door, I looked up into the sky to make sure there were no other storms on the horizon. The light breeze was coming out of the west southwest. You could see the storm far off on the eastern horizon. The temperature had cooled to almost chilly. Goose bumps raised up on my arms, making the little hairs on them stand straight up and be counted. I shivered, but, really I wasn't cold. Oh well, I had things to do, so off I went, taking the path toward the barn, just to make sure everything there was okay and undamaged.

The goats were all huddled together inside of the makeshift hut that Luke had built for them to use in bad weather. As I walked by, the 'designated fearless leader, Arnold the Goat, took some tentative steps toward me. I called him over, but he wasn't in any hurry, in fact he stopped midway. I knew they had to have lost at least 5 years off of their lives, so I unlatched the gate, went in, securely closed it back and walked to the male goat. Seeing that I was inside their home area, the rest came walking over, and they began nuzzling my legs and sticking their snouts in my butt and pushing up against me with purpose. Then, like they always do, Arnold and another big goat stuck their noses in my crotch from the front-side, pushing my nuts around until I shooed them away. Their water trough was filled to capacity. Their dry food looked like mush. Several times I'd suggested to Luke to put the feeder under the shelter... so I guess this time it would be better out in the open... to dry out.

As I was walking toward the gate, I found myself up in the air with a severe pain in my butt... that son of a bitch butted me. I landed almost face first in the damn mud and 'whatever' else was lying in that mud and muck. I stood up... if there was ever a time that I thought that son of a bitch was grinning – that was the time! When I got outside the pen and had the gate securely fastened, I turned to that bastard and vigorously flipped both birdies off to it.

I walked all around the barn. Dad was going to kill someone for leaving the door on the west side open that morning... the door was half torn off its hinges. I surveyed it... the carriage bolts had given way to the fierce wind. The junctures were splintered where they'd pulled away from the stout walls of the barn. I went inside, looked around. Everything inside appeared to be just fine. I got on the intercom and told Dad about the door. He didn't even sound angry... he just told me to stay away from it. He told the other guys to stay away, too.

Using the water spigot, I washed my face and hands the best I could. Meanwhile, I was soaked to the skin with mud and gunk and water. With that in mind, when I took off again, I splashed through every mud puddle... like a 'little kid'. I'd already shown my baby-side, so I just gave in with a what the fuck anyway already attitude.

The east fence running a straight line from the barn to the creek was intact. The gulley ditch was running like a mofo... man, was it running full. I didn't want to get anywhere even close to it. One time, when it was dry, Dad showed me where it emptied into the creek, just down from our swimming hole.

As I topped the crest separating the flatter land with the descent down to the creek, I saw Coltrane standing next to the outcropping of rock ledge. He turned to me and whinnied loudly, then he shook his head... a definite 'NO'. He was, nevertheless, very glad to see me, and I was very glad to see him, too.

I twice fell on my ass while walking to him. The ground was slicker than snot on a doorknob... well... duh! Finally, I got to him... sore as all hell, aching a bit, too... whatever. I pushed it out of my mind, and willed myself to not hurt. Coltrane made everything worthwhile... I got nuzzled but good, saliva, goober, half-eaten grass and whatever else he'd chawed on that morning... if he wasn't my horse, then I'd think 'gross'! Yeah, don't let me kid you – it was gross. Nasty gross. But I loved it, and I damn sure loved him.

Since I was already totally 'mud', I got down on the ground and slid down the bank to the creek. The water was rushing pretty well, but it wasn't out of control. Nevertheless, I stayed away for fear that I'd fall in and get swept under... I had a healthy respect for it, a respect that had definitely been earned the last storm we'd had that filled the creek to capacity... I didn't want that to happen again.

The frogs were out like hell. I counted 18 of them. They didn't mind me being there. I even walked to one of the bigger ones, picked it up. He just eyed me, you know, like, "Let me down you idiot!"

Then I about shit my pants: as I was putting him on the ground, a snake slithered out from the grass and quickly made its way into the water, disappearing from sight. It was just a black snake, maybe 3 feet long and three or four inches around. I wasn't afraid of it, but I thought of Dad... I decided to keep my snake story to myself.

Coltrane, standing at the edge of the embankment had his eye cocked toward me, like he was worried or something. I shouted up to him, "I'm okay. Now I just need to figure out a way to get back up. Don't worry, I won't do anything stupid."

You have to understand that our creek, other than the opening on the west side, where all the water comes 'in', has banks on all sides. The side we swim from is a rock ledge... obviously, there's no way up that. I'd already slid down the embankment – I tried getting up that way... all to no avail... but I was having fun, all the same. I'd make it maybe 3 feet up, and then 'slick' would take over, and down I went, sometimes on my ass, sometimes on one leg, sometimes the other leg, and the last time I went down face first – man what a rush! I mean my clothes were already 'fucked', so whatever the hell anyway.

While I was sitting there contemplating what to do next, fond memories of mud wrestling came to mind... yup, I looked like that, and probably more so. Then a sense of sadness passed through, remembering that John, Rocky's partner in crime, was no longer with us, that he'd been killed, even. Coltrane whinnied loudly. I turned around, looked up, and saw him stomping his right front hoof into the ground... like he was telling me to figure a way out, to not be thinking 'sad' right at that moment... it was a weird feeling, like nothing I'd experienced before, or since.

Then it was like the world had come back alive. The birds were chirping their fool heads off. They'd swoop down, grab big ole honkin worms, and then fly off with their prey. The butterfly's were flying all around, landing on leaves still soaking wet from the rains that had washed everything clean and sparkly. I looked up into the sky... it was perfectly blue, a very deep blue at that. There was even the hint of sunlight.

Not caring about a thing in the world, I laid onto my back into the mud and muck, looked up into the heavens and wondered what was really up there in that vast picture perfect sky. Then a peaceful drowsiness started settling over me, but I could go to sleep... shit, my luck would be that I'd get stuck... you know, the mud would dry but I'd be left there stuck to the dirt without a way to get out (there I go again – thinking kid stuff).

Maybe I was thinking and acting like a kid, a young person... I was 12 years old, after all. As I was lying there, I had this thought that maybe life was okay... I had people who loved me, and they weren't just saying it to get state money... they really loved me. No, they don't 'say' they love you all the time... in every way they show you that you're okay, that you matter, and they treat you like you're a real person... there I go talking in third person, again. I decided that maybe I would have to get to know this 'God' that everybody talks about... you know, the creator of Love and happiness. As I was lying there, I thought that hell could be the stuff Luke, Eric and I had been through in our lives... and how the hell was still happening... John was killed. Then I got mad, clenched my fists, and started crying, though I was trying very hard not to... I got up, and using seedling trees, sheer determination, careful stepping, and tapping into that anger... I made it. Coltrane whinnied, then bashed his head into my side sending me on my ass. No, he didn't INTEND on hurting me, never... I just got up and smacked him upside the head, and I received a fierce and sincere nuzzling.

With some difficulty, I climbed up the rock, walked to the edge, surveyed the situation... the water was high, but not much higher than normal. The racing was pretty much gone... oh, it wasn't normal, but it wasn't raging, not like I had thought it would be... you know, right after the storm and all...

I sat down. With quite a bit of difficulty, I got my galoshes off. Even they were filled with mud and muck and water. When I turned them over, so that the openings were pointed down, the water ran out of them. I stood up and debated about going in for a swim. Whatever. I walked to the edge, checked the water level one more time, and then took a leap of faith. In the second it took to splash land, I thought, "I'm so fucked..."

But I wasn't fucked. The water, although cold, felt really good. I surfaced. While there was a bit of a tug from down below, it wasn't overwhelming, and certainly did not feel like the riptides that I'd felt in the ocean down in Texas during those trips Adam, Tony, Seth and I'd taken. Comparatively speaking, the current in the creek wasn't of any concern. My clothes were somewhat heavy, but, again, not a big concern.

Coltrane had been seriously spooked by the storm; understood!

Sometime later, I couldn't tell you how long later, I got out, sat on the bank, with great difficulty pulled off my t-shirt, shoes and socks, then stood and pushed down to the ground my other clothes, kicked them aside, then worked off my underwear.

My nuts were shriveled up like prunes. My pecker was standing straight out at a 90 degree angle from my lower belly, though it wasn't from sexual arousal – I don't think any way! After that was all done, I walked into the water and let it cascade all around my body. I love going skinny dipping... there's nothing like the feel of being free from the confines of threads people put so much emphasis upon... I could definitely live the naturist lifestyle... mainly cuz we're brought into this world without clothes, and, ultimately, we skip out of life the same way.

After dunking my head several more times, I was fairly assured that, at least most of the mud and muck imbedded into my scalp and hair was gone. I got out, grabbed my clothes, then made the arduous trip up the side of the rock outcropping to sit out and dry off. I spread out my clothes so that they, too, would and could dry as much as possible.

The air was getting warmer. The chill was gone. I looked up into the sky to see that the remaining clouds were disappearing. I figured the sun would soon be shining in all of its glory.

After checking on Coltrane and seeing that he was okay, under the circumstances, I laid on my back, brought my legs up so that my feet were resting flat on the hard granite floor, and started thinking...

The first thing I needed to do was to call Seth. I realized that my life was changing 180 degrees from the old one, the life where I had nobody. Tears began falling out of my eyes, rolling down my cheeks... all I was really thinking about was how he, Adam and Tony had taken me in and made me feel like somebody, and gave me the first glimpses of what love really means, that I could love, and that if I would only open myself up – I could accept love, too.

But... where were Seth and I going? Relatively speaking, they lived so far away, that their coming here was a burden on them, though they consistently said the travels were absolutely no burden on them.

I needed to talk to Seth... things had changed, and were still changing between us... yes, we had some really good and powerful 'bonding' experiences, but the people now in my life were much, much deeper, or different, I'm not sure what I'm trying to say here... maybe I'd talk to Dad first, perhaps he could help me straighten things out... he'd helped me a lot of ways.

Then my mind turned to Rocky... what we did together... and I'm not talking about sex, well, maybe a little... the thing I could not get out of my mind was his use of the word 'gay'... he even said that he was. Is that what I am? I sure liked having sex with Seth... and I damn sure liked what Rocky and I did up there in the loft.

Okay, I'm thinking about sex... let's get real here... Rocky kisses differently... and then I thought about how we went rock hard and exploded just as soon as our lips touched... that hadn't ever happened with Seth. Then there was the matter of Rocky's eyes... they were absolutely beautiful... crystal clear... they are a greenish-grayish color... but they are 'see through'... I saw through them to his very essence, his core, his soul. Sure, Seth and I often stared into each others 'eyes', but I didn't feel the same way with Seth as I do Rocky.

Then there is the matter of his name: Rocky. Is that his given name or is that a nick-name? I ran a bunch of names through my mind, trying to figure out what Rocky really stands for, and could come up with nothing. I'd have to ask him.

I closed my eyes. Not tightly, just lightly, as I wanted the image of his face to become clear. His face is oval, his eyebrows full, his lips, oh my God, his lips – perfect... not too big and definitely not too small... they were just right as the Three Bear rhyme goes... sheesh, the things I'll think of. He's got one or two freckles under his eyes... they are so cute. And he's got a very teeny tiny zit like thing on the tip of his nose.

And then there's his butt. I'd pretty much lost control of myself when my hands went THERE, but, but, I remember his butt... it was perfect... kinda bubbly but not quite (how's that for a sentence full of but's and butt's), full is more like it.

And then there is his male gland. Although I didn't see it... I was trying to imagine it rubbing up against me as we shared 'our moment'... nah, I was too far gone, but then again, I saw 'it' through his jeans, right after we shared 'our 'moment'', just before going downstairs... I would venture to guess that he's very well endowed, what with that sizable mushroom shaped – head... I wondered how big or wide his slit was? I wondered if he had a nice frenulum, or if he had none at all... was he circumcised? How long was it? How wide around? It had to be just perfect.

And then I'm wondering about that 'g' word... 'Gay', to be exact... what does that word really mean? In the dictionary (I'd looked it up) it essentially says 'happy'... Okay, I can deal with happy... I'd have to run it by Rocky to see if he also thinks along these same lines. But he was scared... he said he was gay... but he was frightened... I could tell it. I felt his fear. He was wondering if I would reject him... no fucking way.

And then I'm wondering why I like my hole diddled with, and stuffed with a male gendered sausage, and filled with male cream and essential nectars... the flavor was wonderful, too.

And then there was the hairy boy on the beach in South Texas... he's kewl... I wondered how he was doing, if he was feeling accepted, if he'd found a boyfriend yet, was he enjoying life now that he told someone he was 'gay'... he sure seemed gay, as in happy, silly. He told me he was 'gay'.

Coltrane interrupted my analysis of the world and people in it by whinnying loudly. I looked over to him, wondering if everything was okay. He then snorted in his "I'm okay" way. I turned back and looked straight up in the sky. The view was the deepest blue I'd ever seen, it was like you see into the soul of the universe.

I let out a butt-cheek flapping fart, which relieved a lot of pressure down south of the border, or, well, most of it, anyway. There were other 'pressing matters'... you know, up against my belly... I wondered what Rocky was doing right then and there, at the same time... I wondered if he was thinking about me like I was thinking of him.

I turned my attention away from Rocky to Seth. Now, Seth is all dude. He's a pure Adonis, well, a black Adonis... he's beautiful. What else can I say... you already know our story...? I love him. But then Dad and Mom had talked about a few of the different kinds of love – their love for each other – their love for each of their children... they loved each one of their kids in a different way, but the same... confusing, huh? Definitely.

Coltrane whinnied again, this time louder. I wonder what's up with him, or does he do that all the time, anyway. I got up... the rock was slippery. He looked up when I looked down. He took that opportunity to shake the water out of his hair. I laughed... he shook his hair out just like I do after taking a bath and towel drying it. He turned his head back down and began nibbling on some of the grass and weeds right next to the big rock, a rock as tall as he was. Nice to be ignored, huh?

The sun was shining on the other side of the ledge, so I walked over there and felt the heat coming down and resting on my skin. While I was up, I reached down, grabbed my clothes, spread them out in the sun so that they would dry better.

I laid back down, flat on my back, scratched my pubes, relished the thought that they were nearly back to normal, then reached further back to scratch a mean, nagging itch on my left anal labia. I looked at my finger and saw that it had rock dust on it... I knew, from experience, that putting my finger inside was not an option... the sand had done a job on those sensitive tissues... not a good thing, not a good memory.

I closed my eyes. I took myself back to how Seth 'medicated' that soreness, and how he applied good medicine to those sensitive tissues... hmm... with my male gland leading the way, I got up, checked up on Coltrane... he was doing okay so I jumped down, walked around, petted his sleek silky horse hair, gave him encouragement and assurances that we were just fine, all things considered. He nodded his agreement, then I received yet another thorough nuzzling from his mouth and nose.

Assured that he was okay, I relaxed, walked to our weed patch, bent over at the waist, relieved pent up bowel contents, jumped in the water to rinse off, climbed back up onto the rock, laid out in the sun, and enjoyed the breeze blowing over my body. Once dried, I reached down, took hold of that which designates me male...

After receiving a tremendous, colossal conclusion, all the while alternating my thoughts between Rocky and Seth, sometimes simultaneously, I just thought that things would work out the way they were supposed to. I guess, if 'gay' means boys liking boys and not boys liking girls... but I liked girls too – but not in THAT way – gross... a nasty thought came into my mind – it was about those times when my old dad and mom were fucking their brains out, not giving a shit that a little kid was in the house, listening to them, and sometimes even seeing them... gross. Gag me with a spoon. Gag me with a thumb!

Then I thought of my dream... a dream that I'd had forever and a day... of having children of my own – so that I could love them like I hadn't been loved and cared for... tears came to my eyes... I'd held onto that dream for so long... I didn't want to give it up... but the thought of 'doing it' with a girl just to be doing it to a girl so I could have kids... someday I'd have to rethink it. I wiped eyes, then to break the slight melancholy, (I'd grown balls after seeing Eric and Luke do it many times, and I'd even done it myself), I stood up, and then took a flying dive into the creek. I'm glad it's deep enough for us to do that! I just lazily goofed off, doing nothing really, not thinking of too much either... except, maybe, yeah definitely, I was wondering if Rocky might have been swimming in his part of the creek... he didn't really live that far away... I don't know exactly, for sure... but it didn't seem to be very far away... I mean Eric walked it the other night when he came home, and I stayed with Rocky... you know, when he quietly and peacefully slept in my arms... is that what everybody means by 'just be yourself'?

But, still, my age old question of 'who am I?" has yet to be answered... I still don't know. Dad says to take it easy, to let things grow like a flower does... you know, when it first sprouts out of the ground, then grows up some, and how its first blooms leave much to be desired, but then, over time, at least perennials do, they grow and become beautiful... not that they aren't nice and pretty before... he says I'm right where I should be at this point in my life, and that I'm coming out of that trench I was in before coming HERE. HERE – I love it HERE.

Without a care in the world, I grabbed 'our' rock, tossed it into the really deep water, just like we always do, and then went after it, brought it back, tossed it again, and went after it again... and so on and so forth. Tired, I stepped onto a boulder in the middle of our swimming hole. I saw a small turtle giving me the evil eye... I suppose I was disturbing its habitat... yeah, probably. Actually, that boulder was more like a ledge. I walked to the shore where the turtle was... I leaned down to check it out more carefully and closely. It was actually pretty... I hadn't seen a turtle up close and personal like that before... of course, it ducked inside of its shell when I reached over to it, then he (or she) snuck its head back out when I pulled my hand away...

It was then that I heard a clearing of the throat type cough. At first, I thought the sound came from Luke or Eric... but when I turned around... I was both shocked and very pleasantly surprised... the dude of my thoughts: Rocky... was standing like an Adonis atop the rock, looking down. "Whatcha looking at?"

"A turtle. Hey Rocky... how are you this morning?"

"I'm fine. How are you?"

"I'm fine, too. Man, that was some wicked storm we had this morning."

"Yeah, no kidding. Mom let me sleep in this morning. Fuckin woke me up... I about had a cow. Our lights are off. Did you guys lose yours?"

"Yup. We ended up eating breakfast by candlelight. What brings you down this way?"

Rocky shrugged his shoulders, then said, "Eric said you came to find your horse... is he <pointing to Coltrane> yours?"

"Yup. His name is Coltrane. Coltrane this is Rocky. Rocky this is Coltrane." I said giggling... I'd never introduced a horse to a human.

Rocky giggled. Then he bent over and rearranged my clothes... he held up my underwear. He grinned and asked, "Does this mean...?"

"You're pretty smart, you know." I said, seriously. My dick shot up against my belly... he was handling my clothes... woof. I also became very self-conscious... we'd never seen each other naked before... I was wondering if the time was right... I didn't think so a little voice was saying inside my head, between my ears, behind my eyeballs.

He laughed. I liked the sound of his laughter. It made me feel good, too. I'm so glad he's not crying. My eyes never left his, and his never left mine. Then he wiggled his eyebrows and said, "Turn around." He said that as an 'order'. If he was going to join me... then he'd be... would he wear his underwear?"

I turned around, my mind filled with suspense. I heard his belt buckle hit the rock above, and then a moment of silence, and then a huge splash that sent a wave of water my way, knocking me off of the perch. No problem, I caught myself just as Rocky appeared – right in front of my face. He was smiling... God his smile is beautiful. Automatically, we reached for the other to steady ourselves, to just hold one another... Playfully he asked, "Am I or am I not?"

"Are you or are you not 'what'?" I asked, perplexed over what he meant. Then I 'got it'. I reached around, but he pulled himself away and dove into the water... I saw wet shiny butt, but was it covered? I couldn't tell. He came up on the other side. He was grinning while chuckling.

Okay, two can play that game... I dove under and swam toward where he was last standing... you can't open your eyes in the creek water, not when it had been swum in... Too much mud and other stuff... when I came up... he wasn't there... he was where I had been, you know, standing on the ledge. Then he went underwater... his butt came out of the water... but it was so fast that I still couldn't tell if he was naked or not. I was kind of hoping he was... while I was standing there wondering where the heck he was... a pair of arms wrapped me up from behind, and then he took us underwater, and then, even more surprising was when I felt my lips being pushed against – by another pair of lips – his. And our kiss was hungry... however... we're not amphibians... he ran out of oxygen the same time I did. We surfaced... and it was then all doubts as to his clothing (or not) was answered fully and completely... his penis was free... and damn, was it hard or what... it was definitely fully elongated. We made our way to the ledge, and then our arms went around each other, and we did a proper kiss, and we brought our bodies together in perfect harmony.

When I reacted by reaching down... I wanted to feel it in every way... he pushed my hand away before I could get there... I looked into his eyes... I was wondering if I'd done something wrong... but his eyes didn't tell me that I'd fucked up... I saw hunger in them... yet, I also saw reservations.

He did permit me to put my arms around his waist... together, we pulled each other in. His penis and mine came together... I gauged that he was probably an inch longer than mine... it felt thin, not fat, and oh my God, there we went again. Our lips joined, searching, searching and searching for perhaps tonsil tissues, maybe further than that... we both exploded in showering sparkling fireworks.

Somewhat recovered, though still quite shaky, I whispered, trying to hold a giggle back, "At least we didn't mess our jeans."

"Yeah, that was so embarrassing yesterday... I mean when I went to the hospital with wet underwear... God, I was so embarrassed. They wanted to keep my clothes... something about evidence... but I told them my step-father hadn't touched me that way... so I got off."

"So, are you okay? I mean are you Really Okay?"

"They say I'm undernourished and my blood sugar is high, but the doctor says they can go together... something about my body depleting sugar to make up for the food I haven't eaten... they gave me two vitamin shots in my butt... damn, those hurt... they want me to get one shot a week for a couple of months to help bring my levels more to normal... but damn... those things hurt... I'm also on a strict diet... other than that I check out okay. The last time he got to me was nearly 3 weeks ago... the doctors told us that the bruising, caused by him, are slower to heal because my immune system... Anyway, I'm going to be okay."

"That's good to hear." Then I smiled, wrapped my arms around him, and then lowered my hands to rest on top of his cheeks down south of the border. He didn't resist, in fact, his went around mine... and he was looking deep into my eyes... searching for any sign that I wasn't okay with what he was doing... he winced once then, twice as I traveled my hands over his fine feeling globes, so I stopped, looked into his eyes – deeper, then added, "I could kiss them and make the owies all go away." My fingers were gently kneading his fine cheeks, and every once in a while, I'd trail my fingers into his dark valley... it was like I was drawn there... while his muscles were initially taut, they were relaxing, like he liked what I was doing, but, at the same time, I felt reservations.

We kissed very, very gently. It was almost a tease... but I really liked the feather, petal like kisses we were sharing... God, I was rapidly getting turned on... my innards were itching like crazy. I said, "Let's go sit on the rock up there... we need to talk." I needed to talk to him, but I didn't know what I was going to say, or if I did figure out 'what' to say – how was I going to say it...

He giggled, "But you'll see me butt naked."

"And your point is?" I said very playfully, while bringing my hands around to his front side. He let me take hold of his still very hard appendage. His eyes, already wide and expansive, opened just that much more... he liked... we both liked because his hand went around mine... I was a bit self-conscious because we were not of the same size and caliber.

He brushed my hand away from his male gland, then we took off up the path up to the rock. He insisted that I go first. When we got up there and were sat down on the hard surface, he said, giggling, "Nice view from down below, James. If I may say so, you have nice cheeks all around." With that, he kissed both of my 'upper cheeks' and then our lips touched. I slid my tongue into and around and finally 'inside'... lazily, we played 'tag', and gave each other thorough oral examinations, much to our delight. I shuddered, not because I was cold, but because I was totally entranced, relaxed, and comfortable with him, like I'd never really experienced before, not even with Seth.

"James, is everything okay?" Rocky asked while tracing beads of water down from my forehead, then used his fingers like a squeegee across my eyes, then he sat back, awaiting my reply to his question, a fair question.

I turned my head away and looked down to the rock we were sitting on. He put his hand gently against my cheek, and urged me to look into his warm pools of water eyes. He said, "I'm very honest, James. Tell me what you're holding back, and why... I'm not going to bite you."

He kissed my lips full square on, then took my head and laid it in his lap. By that time we'd both gone soft, but I saw his eye strainer lying right next to my cheek... it was really cute... and Rocky noticed that I found it to be very cute... in fact – beautiful... much to my chagrin, though, he rearranged his legs and tucked his beautiful penis to where I couldn't see it. All I could see was the beginnings of his pubic patch adorning man-boy-mound. I looked up into his eyes, smiling, thinking he was playing around... but the look in his eyes was serious and questioning... but not in a bad way... I didn't feel afraid or anything bad like that.

I basically told him my story, what happened to get me 'here'. I pretty much glossed over the relationship that Seth and I had had, or were having... Rocky sensed that I was holding back... he wouldn't have any part of it... and I really didn't want to have to hold back... so I didn't... I told him everything, though I would not and did not go into graphic detail about what we did together... you know, the sex stuff. I just told him that we'd been 'active'.

"Well, that's good. I don't know anything about sex, other than to do the usual 'guy' stuff. When you decide on what to do... that's not right... I'll always be here, James... I'll be your friend... you are already mine... and I love you for this... I'm not sure what I would have done the other night had you not been there... don't worry, I would not ever do harm to myself... I was ready to explode, though. You actually helped me release that dam that had been building inside me for a very long time... I thank you for being there when I really needed you."

I leaned up and brought his face down to mine. We kissed tenderly. Then we sat in companionable silence for close to an eternity, it seemed, though time meant nothing, really.

"My Mom and I talked last night, about deep stuff, about stuff we needed to talk about for a long time, stuff that we'd put off forever. She told me the truth about the relationship with my step-father... more to the point: she told me that he really is my father... I carry his raunchy blood around in me... I suspected it all along but was always so afraid to say anything... he just told me that I was his bastardized step-son... it was just one more way of tearing me apart... it worked, too. So, James, I understand how you feel – you know, wondering why our fathers hated us so much... like you, I don't understand it either. My Mom said for me to not place my value on HIS words, that, instead, we should and are to place value on who and what we are, and who we grow to love and respect. I told her that I'm gay. Do you know what she said?"

I looked up into his eyes... they were dripping wet. We changed places. I didn't hide away that which designates me male. Yes, he looked it over, very carefully even, but neither of us was inclined to do anything with them, then he lay back with a little smile on his face, nodded, and then we got back serious, "No... What did she say?"

"That I'm her son. She says that there are many kinds of love in the world. Each of us has to define our own sense of love. I asked her about he who calls me bastard, how is that love... do you know what she said?"

"Sorry, I wasn't there... remember? What did she say?"

"You're a smart ass, aren't you?"

"I've been accused of it before... so yes... I do have that ability."

I leaned down. I kissed those full beautiful lips one more time. Rocky continued, "That hate and love cannot coexist with each other. Hate is actually a withholding of love. We're born loving... it's all the crap that's thrown against us that makes us hesitant and afraid to let people inside of us. For instance, I love Eric to pieces... he's been my best friend ever since he moved here... and we even tried some of the sex stuff... but our love doesn't go that way, and along comes the likes of you making me cream my jeans just as soon as our lips touched... wild, man. My question for you is this: we are like electricity... I mean, geez, you blew my circuit breaker all to smithereens... not only that, but I feel like we are connected in some way... good ways... but you're holding back... and that's because you are in love with someone else... maybe. I don't understand all that stuff very well... I'm just shooting from my hip, James."

"Rocky, I'm not trying to get in your pants... Seth was always there for me... he's probably the first, no, he's the second person I ever felt that loved me for who I am, not for someone that I'm not... he's very gay... I could never say that word for him... okay... here it is... I laid on this rock for over an hour this morning trying to figure things out... I'm gay, okay... I said it. I am. But... I've had a dream all of my life – I want to have children... I want them to experience the love that I missed out on." Tears began leaking down my cheeks, as my dream played over and over... Rocky made no attempt to stop my tears... so they came freely... they were running down the sides of my cheeks and probably were landing on the rock, but I didn't look down to see if that was happening.

Rocky did put his soft hand on my chest... when I didn't speak, when I couldn't think of anything more to say, my secrets were all out in the open, now, he simply said to pay it forward, that perhaps Seth and I could foster or adopt kids. I was quick to point out that that plan was not in the works for us, Seth and me. Seth had told me a number of times that, really, deep, deep down, he didn't want children.

"So how do you feel about it, Rocky... don't you want to give some kids a chance... they need good parents... so whatever the fuck if they're gay, straight, black, white, purple, green or polka dotted or spotted... who gives a rats ass?" I said determinedly.

"Quite frankly, James, I haven't given it much thought. You've given me some things to think about. My Mom and I talked about kids and their parents quite a bit last night... in fact, we talked about so many things that I fell asleep in her bed. I woke up this morning with her arms around me... she was holding me tight... just like she did when I was a really small little boy. Just knowing 'he' wasn't coming home all drunked up and pissed off... sure, we talked about some serious stuff, too... like would we be able to keep the farm, which is one of our greatest concerns. She reminded me, and I'm not gloating or anything, that I do most of the outside work... a lot of our property is not worked. I do not know how to do a lot of things, but I can learn."

"Ask for help. I don't know much about our community, other than we help each other out. Dad doesn't have the money to buy combines and big fancy tractors and shit... he said that others help him harvest. And he told me that he helps others by helping them build things. He said that way back when his grandfather, or maybe his great grandfather, I don't remember which, well... anyway, when they homesteaded the place, the town came together to make sure they had a home to live in."

Rocky's eyes perked up. He patted my chest, then reached up to tenderly kiss my lips... with meaning behind it. "I sure hope so. I'll talk to Mom about it. Right now it's kind of overwhelming."

Gently, very gently, I rearranged us so that Rocky was lying on his back with his head supported on the rock. I lay down beside him and pulled him into my arms. There we kissed with meaning, but not hungrily, and without expectations of jumping each others' bones... although our bones were at the ready... the itch deep down inside me wasn't itching so badly.

The hard surface we were lying on did not do well for our hips, though. Rocky rolled onto his back and lazily scratched his pubes and on down beneath his scrotal sack. I leaned up on my elbow to observe. Something came over me... I looked into his eyes... God, they were totally penetrating my soul, like nothing else or nobody else had ever done before...

"Whatcha thinking of?" Rocky asked softly, his voice and inflection demanding... no, not demand as in demand, as in the literal sense of the word, rather, he was genuinely curious.

Instead of directly answering his question with words, I leaned down, kissed his chest while putting my arms around his midsection and pulling him toward me. I then trailed down to his belly button and took a tentative lick inside... his dick was right up close and personal, nearly staring me to death. It was hard and pulsing with each heartbeat... I carefully observed it. Rocky was running his hands through my hair and rubbing my neck. His penis was unique; at least for me it was, in that it was more cylindrically shaped... kind of like a missile with a mushroom at the top. A lone vein with little branches going here and there was clearly evident. His nut-sack was hanging loosely against the very top of his thighs. Like me, his sack was devoid of hair, smooth and silky appearing, and held nice sized small-walnuts on either side, the left side hanging just a little lower than the right. Even with the breeze blowing, his aroma was something else... it was inviting, my nostrils flared trying to get each and every whiff. I guessed it was maybe 4 to 4.5 inches in length, maybe a little more, maybe a little less. Remember me wondering if he had a nice frenulum? He had one, though it wasn't terribly pronounced... and his slit... well it was perfectly shaped and sized. And there was not one single blemish along its entire length. And, oh yeah, he had a nice smattering of thin wispy, almost white pubes hairs sprouting from either side of the base of his penis... they were slightly moving with the breeze. Compelled, I reached my fingers down to feel them... just as they looked, they felt soft... not at all scratchy and fully filled in like Seth's. Seth's were kinkier than anything else, much like the hair on his head... I'd gathered that the textures of his hair, all over, were just a significance of his race. I like them, each of them.

What I did next just came naturally... I reached my fingers down beneath his balls, lifted slightly, and at the same time traveled the remaining distance between his belly button and penis head... just as I was about to engulf it, he lifted my head up and away, urging me to lie beside him so that we could see each other.

I was kind of wondering why he did that... I wanted to pleasure him in every way... I was drawn to him, and I wanted to taste his essence almost more than anything else in the world.

Rocky's eyes were filled with yearning, yet there was something about them that made me stop and think for a moment – with my big head, not the little one.

Rocky didn't give me too much time to think about the situation. He said, "Don't hurt Seth, okay? Besides, you are waking up a side of me that I didn't know existed... sure I want to have sex, who doesn't... but, when I do have sex for the first time, I want him to give everything, not just a part of his essence... I've done some reading up... and, well, it seems that a lot of gay people, straight people too, get wrapped up in their bodies and don't have a whole lot of room for who and what they really are... you know... sharing their minds and spirits. I can't believe I told my Mom about this last night... but you know what?"


"She said those are good qualities in a person. She even admitted that she'd been smitten by my father... before they knew it she was pregnant with me. She was also quick to point out that I was conceived in love... her love... not my father's. She made it perfectly clear that my father's hatred for me was not and is not my fault. That made me feel a whole lot better about everything... I had always thought that I wasn't good enough to be his son – he told me that countless times."

"I believe it. My sperm and egg donors told me the same thing. They said I was a total mistake, that I was a bother to them, and that I'd fucked up their lives... I still don't know why my old dad did what he did... Dan, my Real Dad, told me the man was sick because he saw nothing inside me that would justify anything the sperm donor said, or did. And you know what?"


"I'm believing him."

"I believe my Mom... she's a good woman. We've got a lot of things to get straightened out... she apologized for putting her love for me on the back burner, though she didn't intend for it to happen... I apologized to her for not getting more between her and my father... she told me that's not my position in life... I still feel bad about not getting more involved, and that instead of facing the devil I ran away from it."

"I was no match for my old dad, Rocky."

"Me neither. Me neither."

I wondered if Coltrane knew that Rocky and I needed to have our talk... that horse is sure intuitive. I say this because when Rocky and I decided it was time to get to work, he permitted us both to get on his back. He rode us up to the fence line at the far end of his pasture... I came to find out that their farm was adjacent to ours. The thing about it, though, was that our back pasture was next to the far pasture on their place.

I had a lot to think about.

And Seth had said that he needed to talk to me about something, but did not want to nor would he talk about it over the phone. Our schedules had missed each other quite often, and when they did mix, Adam and/or Tony were unavailable to get us together. I was learning that life was like that sometimes. And Rocky drove the point home, too.

When I finally got home, I learned that both Eric and Luke were sick in bed with a bad stomach flu bug. I checked on them both. Each was asleep in their own beds in their own rooms, resting comfortably. I changed into clean(er) clothes, went downstairs and watched Mom begin dinner preparations. She handed me some potatoes and carrots to peel so that they could be cooked along with leftover meat into a beef-vegetable stew... she makes killer soup... I don't mean it literally, of course.


"Talk to me, Boy. Oh, by the way, Kay and Virginia told me to thank you. They've been through so much. They appreciated your being there."

"I guess... uhm, well, I've been thinking about a couple of things... can I bounce them off of you?"

"Sure thing. Let me get this stew going, or you can... however you feel most comfortable."

I grabbed the peeler and a potato and got to work. The words, many were the same ones that Rocky and I used, just started flowing out... while I didn't directly mention the specifics of our sexual relationship, she was already aware that we'd been very intimate, I did share about the conflicts I was having. Other than acknowledging what I was saying, she didn't add anything or distract my words, my emotions. I drew in a deep breath, and without any real aforethought, I blurted, very softly, "Mom, I'm gay."

"I know. Moms know things about their children, James. Though you've only been with us for a short amount of time... I knew. I was just waiting for you to come to your own truth and acceptance." Mom said, turning to me. She walked over, wrapped her arms around my head and pulled me in firmly.

"Uhm, well, how did you know and I didn't?"

"It's just like I said... moms know about their children, sometimes long before the children know for themselves. That's why parents are adults, or should be."

"And you're okay with it?"

"Why wouldn't I be?"

"Oh, I don't know. I've just heard so much on the TV about how bad we are, how we're going to burn in hell for all eternity... and that idiot over in Topeka..."

"He's a nutcase, James. Don't let him define your goodness. At the very least, you do not go around spouting hatred and disrespect when you disagree with someone. There are many ways, and you'll find out for yourself as you age and mature, to disagree with someone without being disagreeable. Sometimes, the right thing to do is to simply walk away. Sometimes it's necessary."

"Like Rocky's family? I didn't even know they lived just across the fence."

Mom sat down in the chair next to me. She grabbed a knife and a carrot, then with precision began scraping away its skin. I took hold of another potato... Mom stopped me, then showed me how to peel better, more effectively. When we got into the groove, she said, "Child, I done wrong... in the worst possible way by staying away. You see, Kay, Virginia and I were best friends long ago. That all changed when they married men that were no good for them, or so I thought. I put conditions on our friendships... to the point where I walked away in their time of need... but I couldn't then see things as I see them today. Speaking of them, John's funeral will be the day after tomorrow. I expect you boys to wear nice shirts and ties... jeans are fine... your good ones will suffice."

"I've never worn a tie before."

"You're Dad or Thomas will help. None of our boys have had occasion to wear one. And that reminds me, Tony called this morning. Your adoption is scheduled for next Tuesday, that is if you want to go forward."

I dropped the peeler to the table. The potato fell to the floor and rolled away... I grabbed up Mom and hugged her to pieces, tears once again leaking from my eyes with abandon. "YES! YES! OH GOD, I LOVE YOU SOOOOOOO MUCH! THANK YOU. THANK YOU!"

Mom held me firmly in her arms, and wouldn't let go, not that I wanted her to let go, because I didn't, not then, not ever... I was so damned happy. And they were adopting a gay child, me, and Mom had no trouble with it, nothing whatsoever. I heard no reservations in her voice, nor did I feel them from her arms or bosom... suddenly, I realized I wasn't that bad child my old parents said I was. While I didn't know who or what I was... I only knew that I wasn't the same kid they told me about all the time. I'm afraid that I broke down, entirely, upon experiencing the realization. I believe, that, to my dying day, I will never again experience anything like 'that'.

The rest of the dinner preparations, dinner itself, and the time after that until chore time, was like I was way up there on cloud nine...

Even chores didn't seem all that bad. Even the chicken house didn't seem all that tough... I only walked out and puked, only once, not the two or three times, as was usual.

Luke's goats were insistent for attention and affection. One of the wires holding their feeding trough together had came loose. I was sitting on the ground using a pair of pliers that I'd gotten from the tool shed to fix it. They were milling about, sticking their snouts in my neck, down into my shirt, nuzzling me here and there and everywhere... it was quite distracting... but, I sensed just exactly why Luke liked taking care of them... they gave their unconditional love to him, in a goat sorta way.

I don't know how long I was in their pen... I wasn't in any hurry to leave, and they weren't in any hurry to get me out of their home-grounds. Dad, Thomas and Sandy approached. They all laughed at seeing me surrounded by the 'wild' animals, but they just stayed and watched until I was finished feeding them. Then we went to the barn. Thomas had me drop down a bale of hay so that we could feed the two ready to foal horses. We all checked them out very carefully. Dad was quick to point out what to look for... you know, changes in their vaginal and titty areas... they were very close to delivering, in fact they were pretty sure one of them would drop that night. Dad took the first shift and Thomas took the second. A shift is a period of time right around 6 hours. I asked if I could be present since I'd been around birthing before... both agreed. When asked what shift I wanted to take... the answer was easy – both.

Dad was okay with the arrangement, so long as my chores were not neglected.

Then Dad surprised me... he thanked me for jumping right in and pulling up the slack for Eric and Luke. I seriously stated that I was just doing what they would do, and had done when I'd been gone for various reasons... like the trips Adam, Tony, Seth and I had taken, just to name one.

Dad told me to take credit when due.

When Thomas and Sandy took off, Dad held me back. He put his arms around my shoulders. Carefully, deliberately, he said, "Rocky's a good boy, James. He's been through so much and never once complained, even when he had every reason in the world to complain. As you know, I'm aware of where you boys are even when you don't think so. It's my job, as a parent, to know... it's my job to keep you safe, too. Here's a little word of advice, take it or leave it, it is not a big deal, yet it is, in my estimation, or else I wouldn't say anything... talk to Seth. You need to make some decisions. Keep in mind that honesty is our best ally, for without honesty life is a series of shambles. I strongly believe that if you take care of things now, good things are in your future."

"I know. It's hard though... do you remember us talking about love and all the different kinds?"

"I do."

"Well... Rocky gave me a whole lot to think about when we talked today... I had to add another kind of love... I mean we became best friends, literally overnight... and no, we didn't do anything like 'that' even though... Dad, I've got to admit that I wanted to... you know... uhm, well, you know... do sex things... there, I said it. But... well, I don't want to goof things up. Is that weird?"

"No, not at all. It's a sign that you're growing up. Son, our sex powers are the strongest there is... sometimes, if we let them, they rule our relationships, or can... I've seen it happen in other people. I've not had that problem, or situation, it's not really a problem unless we make it one. Now, I know you are budding into your full potential, that the little guy does most of the thinking in a very convincing way... it strikes our basic instincts, to the core, to the essence of our being. But, that's not all there is to life and a relationship... I feel that you are learning of this as you go along in life. I'll give you all the guidance that I know how to give, but, ultimately, the decisions have to be yours; unless I see you on a course of pain and destruction... this is when I'll step in. I do not want to make your decisions, James. Good decisions and bad ones are how we grow into an understanding that permits us to live in this world, as it is. I still make mistakes, and some of them have long lasting effects... I'm just being honest with you."

"Like what... you made a bad decision, too?"

"Absolutely. I feel bad for Virginia, her sister Kay, and Rocky, too. I knew those men were bad business... I just didn't know how bad... or I wasn't looking for it... I realize that now, and will act differently in the future."

"Yeah, I feel bad for them, too." Smugly, I added, "The Sheriff says that Rocky's dad will never see freedom ever again... is that true for John's dad, too?"

"Oh yeah... but for reasons I cannot talk to you about. They are held in confidence. What do ya say that we go get the ice cream freezer going? By the time you have your bath it should be ready... or at least well on its way. We'll need to get back here by 9. I don't think she'll birth until later, but you never know."

On our way to the house, I asked, seriously, "Dad, can I call Seth. If Eric and Luke are okay, you know over the flu bug, can I go with them this weekend... he and I need to talk about some serious stuff?"

"Oh, I don't see that being a problem... so long as you're home by Sunday night. You know that we will be going to court to take care of some 'little' business, right?"

"Oh heck YES! Thanks, Dad. YA-HOOOOOO!" I said while jumping up and down... then stopped... as a shard of pain captured my attention to the max. Dad quickly put his arm around my shoulders to keep me from falling on my butt.

Seeing that I was okay, that I was acting okay, we continued on. To put my attention away from what I was feeling, I asked Dad, before he could say anything, "Dad, I hear about heaven and hell and all that stuff... do you think John's in heaven?"

"That I have no doubt about. I'm not sure about all the stuff the preachers talk about... you know, heaven and hell... a man can live hell on earth. The God I know and understand forgives anything if forgiveness is asked for... you know, honestly."

"I'm gay."

"You're a human being, James. Who you have sex with, who you fall in love with is irrelevant... the important thing is to love and to pass it on, and accept their love, too. I'm not gay, but that doesn't make you wrong because you are. Don't hurt. Don't harm. These are my guideposts to living... everything else falls under them. You're my Son. It will be official next Tuesday – no if's, and's or buts. And thanks for sharing with me. By the way, I'm not surprised... I do not mean this in a bad way... I knew you would come to your truth. Thanks for sharing with me."

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