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The Journey

Chapter 16

By Sunshine Boy

"What's wrong sweetheart?"

"Oh Beau, I'm so sorry."

Beau's chest tightened; he'd heard these words before.

"Alright, well if you feel that way..."

"Wait, let me finish." Tonya insisted. "Beau I love you so much and I want to be with you but we're moving."

"Oh." Beau was in shock, Tonya loved him...and she was moving?




"I know. Damn it Beau, I have plans, a life of my own. I want to stay here and go to school and be with you. But my dad just accepted this new position."

"How long?"

"We have a month, then who knows how long before we move back...if ever."

Beau sighed and was silent for a moment, then, "It's not too late."

"For what?"

"To live in Res at the university."

"What? No, I can't afford that, neither can my parents."

"Student loan."

"Beau I ..."

"Tonya listen to me. I love you more than anything. Let's figure this out together. We can do it I know we can. I just don't want to lose you."


It was evening. Doctor Todd looked out her window and saw her son sitting on the grass with Sam and Dan, smiling and talking. She too had recognized the special connection between Sam and Dan right away.

There had been times when Margaret Todd worried about her son, never going to experience 'true love'. But now, seeing these two boys and the bond between them, she began to wish everyone could know a love like Sam and Dan's.

"Thank you so much for letting us spend the night, I don't know how to thank you and your mother for everything you've done for us."

"No worries dude, I'm so glad to meet you and spend some time, we're even."

"Dan?" Sam whispered.

"Yes babe?"

"I'm tired, I think it's the pills. Could you...?"


Dan helped Sam to bed and told him he'd join him soon. Then he went back outside to talk to Sandy some more.

"What's it like, to hold him? To wake up in his arms?"

Dan thought, "It's so wonderful it hurts. Sometimes I cry, I wake up and we're holding each other and I feel so, so full and complete I actually cry."

Sandy looked to the ground.

"What will become of me Dan?"

"Can I tell you something? You''re..." Dan struggled, nothing he'd seen or heard before had prepared him to properly word this statement. "You're hot."

Sandy smiled and was red faced but Dan couldn't see because it was getting dark. "Serious, you're a great looking guy, you could have anyone. And from what I've seen so far you have a personality to match. Be strong and patient, you'll find someone in time. When I wake up next to Sam it's the most wonderful thing in the world, and I realize now that if I weren't gay then that wouldn't be possible, I wouldn't feel about Sam the way I do. Being gay will challenge me, I know it will and I'm sure it will you too, but holding Sam... it's worth it." Dan stopped; he didn't like giving advice because he always felt that what he was saying was dumb and rambling.

"Thank you Dan." Sandy said very seriously.

Sandy and Dan talked a while longer about nothing too important, just friends getting to know one another. "What do you want to do, you know, career wise?" Sandy asked.

"I think I'd like to be a teacher but I'm not sure."

"Why not?"

"I dunno, I really want to do it but is it right for me?"

"You really want to, isn't that enough?"

"No, I need to know that it's the right choice, that going to school for it won't be a waste of money and time, that I won't hate teaching all my life but feel obligated to continue because I went to school for it for 6 years and don't want to spend more time taking something else that I could hate more."

"Wow, you're one of those people huh?"

"What do you mean?"

"The kind that can't make a choice, at least not an important one without knowing every eventual outcome of both sides of the decision."

"I guess...I'm only like that when it comes to life altering decisions."

"Choosing a career isn't really that life altering you know."

"Of course it is it's what I'm going to do for the rest of my life."

"Well when you say it that way. But you know, you don't have to do anything for the rest of your life, there's nothing to stop you from changing your mind along the way and doing something different, could be anything. Ever heard that saying, do what you love and the money will follow?"

"That's a stupid saying. I mean, what do I love?"

"Your thinking too hard man. Do you like kids?"

"There okay, not so much at a young age but by the time they reach high school and can pretty well take care of themselves then sure. I like kids."

"What would you teach?"

"I dunno, physics probably, it's my favourite subject...well that's not true, social studies was my favourite but I don't really want to teach that because there's too many essays to mark."

"So do it, go for it."

"But what if I don't really like it?"

"Then do what you do like. Think of it this way, you're life should be about making yourself a better person and finding happiness so no matter how long it takes, you should look for what you love."

"Wow, thank you Sandy." Dan said with a smile.

"My pleasure dude."

"You know, it's not too late, I might be able to get into the University this fall."

"Go for it."


"Are you sure you can do this, I'm heavy you know." Sam protested.

"Sure I'm sure." Dan said.

Sam was sitting comfortably in the large bike trailer with all the gear. The mountain bike attached to the trailer was adjusted to fit Dan.

Dan had to sign his life away to rent the bike and trailer. Sam insisted that he'd be able to cover the $210 rental when they got it back to Calgary and Dan was glad to hear that because he couldn't afford it.

"Sandy, Doctor Todd, I don't know how to thank you. You've been so kind. Sandy, here's my E-mail, and phone number. Please write or call me I want to hear from you." Dan stuck a paper in Sandy's hand. Sandy's mom at that point wished them a safe trip and started walking back. Dan and Sandy stood two feet apart.

"Well I better go." Dan said.


Dan hesitated then stepped forward and gave Sandy a warm hug. "You'll find him one day patient."

"Thank you Dan. Safe journey." Sandy held Dan a moment longer then let go and Dan stepped back leaving Sandy's arms once more empty.

"E-mail me, that's an order." Dan said grinning as he got on the bike and kicked up the kickstand.

"I will I promise."

"Godspeed Sandy Todd."

"Take care Dan, Sam."

Dan pushed down on the pedals hard and Sandy watched as the only two boys he'd ever known who were like him rode away.

"Damn leg" Sam muttered.

"You ok back there?" Dan asked.

"Yeah, it's just... how come you got to hug the cute guy?" Sam giggled.

Dan rode down a quiet street a few blocks then turned onto the bike path. The path was an old train track line that had been closed and sold to the government who'd filled the space between the rails with asphalt and made it into a section of the transcanada bike path.

Dan peddled hard trying to maintain a speed of at least 20km/h according to the little speedometer on the handlebars. It was hard going and it would be 8:30 that night when Sam and Dan finally arrived at the rail yards in Field.

"This is it, this is where the spiral tunnel's are." Dan said. "Cathedral Mountain over there, mount Ogden there. The tunnels are inside, we'll see more tomorrow."

Dan was sitting on a log, leaning against a tree with his feet in the pan of hot water, Sam was sitting next to him.

"Dan? Do you think Sandy really will find someone?"

"Yes, in time I'm sure he'll find someone. After all I found you and I'm not nearly as cute as Sandy."

"Who's Sandy?" Sam said with a grin.


"Beau, I talked to my parents about living in res."


"Well it was interesting. They instantly guessed I'd met a boy."


"Yeah, so I told them they were right, and I told them all about you."

"Nice things I'm sure."

"Perhaps." Tonya said mysteriously. "Anyway, they said that they can pay my tuition and books and maybe help a little with the housing but they can't pay it all. I'll have to get a job."

"So they agreed?"

"Not exactly."

"What's that mean?"

"Well they said they'd help me with this on one condition."

"Hit me."

"They want to meet you, and if you're 'a nice boy' according to my father's definition then yes, they'll help me."

"Us." Beau corrected.


Dan was in bed with Sam, their bodies pressed together and their arms wrapped tight around each other.



"How long until we get home?"

"At this rate, probably four days."

"I see."


"Well, it's nothing, I'm just looking forward to a hot shower and a real meal."

"Hey what's wrong with my cooking?" Dan joked.

"Oh I don't know, could it be that it's about as imaginative as Kraft Dinner can get?"

"Well, I don't have a gourmet kitchen here."

"So what your saying is, when you get home you can cook something great for me."

"Yes. Sure I'll cook something great for you, on one condition."

"Oh yeah?"


"Well what?"

"I take that shower with you." Dan said as he kissed Sam's nose.


A sleepy Dan emerged from his tent into the rain. "What the fuck!" He bellowed in the early morning air.

"'ll attract attention." Sam said.

"Who cares, look at this weather. Damn it."

"Well we could always spend a day here."

"I'd like to but every day we spend out here is another $50 on the bike rental bill."

"Ah no biggie, I can cover it."

"Also, we have almost no food left, and very little money to buy more."

"I suppose that is a problem."

Dan packed up the camp and got Sam into the trailer. Then he put on his raincoat and turned off onto the highway. They would have to ride on the shoulder of the highway all the way up the 2 kilometre, 6% grade.

"Damn this rain." Dan mumbled as he peddled. "Damn this hill." He added a short time latter as he stopped for a rest. Just then a huge truck rumbled past with it's wheels blasting Dan with ice water off the road. "Goddamn truck!" Dan shouted.

Sam sat in the trailer feeling very guilty. Dan was having a terrible time and there was nothing he could do to help. He felt so useless and guilty for not being able to share Dan's burden.

When Dan reached the top of the hill the rain had subsided and though it was still overcast it looked as though it might clear up and still become a nice day.

Dan stopped at a rest stop by the side of the road and bought a few things to eat. Then they stopped to look at a nearby lake, very dark green and almost cold enough to be frozen over. After that they looked at the spiral tunnels information kiosk by the highway then finally continued on.

They arrived at castle mountain junction that evening at 8:00. "I was planning to be in Banff tonight." Dan said with a little disappointed that he hadn't made it all the way he'd planed but Sam reminded him "Ah well, more time together."

"Well then I guess we should make the most of it." Dan said with a smile.


"Look at the price of rent for one of these things Beau. $300 a month for a 10 by 12 foot cinderblock room that you share with someone not of your choosing for only 8 months of the year."

"Ouch. Suggestions?"

"Well, there is one thing but I suggest we wait until you've met my parents tomorrow."

"Can't you tell me now?"

"Nope, not yet."

"Alright. Well by the way, what should I wear, how should I act, what should I say, is there anything special I should know?"

" father can't be pleased so just be yourself and try not to let him mentally destroy you with his constant verbal passive hostility."

"AGH!" Beau squeaked.


The following morning saw Dan and Sam ridding down the shoulder of the number one highway under blue skies. Meanwhile it saw Beau rushing around his room trying to find just the right thing to wear. Then rushing to brush his teeth and comb his hair. He rushed out the door and drove to the park near his house where he picked up Tonya who had walked there so that she could be with him when he got to her house to meet the parents.

"Do you think I look okay?"


"Was the vest a good idea or no?"

"Yes it was."


"Yes. Beau, don't worry, I'll still love you even if my parents don't." Tonya said with a smile.

"Okay, I can do this."

"I hope you mean drive under this stress." Tonya said sarcastically.

Beau pulled up in front of Tonya's house and took a deep breath.

"You gonna shut off the engine or do you want to make a fast getaway?" Tonya asked as Beau got out of the car leaving the engine running.

"Huh? Or right, yeah."

Tonya led the way up the steps and into the front door.

"Mom? Dad?"

"Hello dear." Tonya's mom said as she walked to the front door from the dinning room where she'd been sitting and reading. "And who is this?"

"This is Beau."

"Nice to meet you Beau."

"Nice to meet you Mrs. Rolands."

"Where's dad?" Tonya asked.

"Oh he's out working in the yard, I'm sure he'll be in soon." Just then the back door closed with a slam. "That must be him. Tonya, make Beau comfortable on the couch, I'll go get your father."

"Sure mom."

Beau took off his shoes and sat down on the couch keeping his hands in his lap. This house with it's pristine white carpet and delicate glass works dispersed throughout the room was without a doubt stylish but also made Beau uncomfortable as he was in new surroundings and unsure about the natives.

"So you're the boy who wants my daughter to be with him 4,000 miles away from her family." The man, older than Beau had expected entered the room and was staring Beau down. He seemed serious. "Mr. Rolands I presume." Beau said as he stood back up to great Tonya's dad. "I'm Beau."

"Yes I know who you are. Sit."

Beau now completely in a state of shock did as he was told.

"Ed." Tonya's mom said disapprovingly. "Can I get you anything Beau?" She asked.

"No, no thank you Mrs. Rolands I'm fine thanks."

"Oh call me Samantha dear."

"So how long have you and my daughter been seeing each other?" Mr. Rolands asked in a much softer tone than he'd used previously. Beau would learn latter that Mr. Roland's previous attitude toward Beau was really his attempt at a joke. For he had a type of humour that Beau would never fully come to understand.

"Umm well we've known of each other for a few years, we've been going to school together since grade 10 but it wasn't until the last semester of grade 12 that I really started to notice her." 'Fuck, bad wording, ummm...' "That is, I'd seen her in the halls and had always wanted to say hello but I never could find the courage. Then in the last semester we had two classes together and I got to know Tonya better."

"After that we became fast friends but I never thought Beau was seriously interested in me until he asked me to go to a movie at the beginning of summer."

"I see. Well you seem like a nice young man."

Beau stifled a deep sigh; 'perhaps I can get through this.'

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