Change In Latitudes, Changes In Attitudes by MonaCK, Cathy Roberts
Summary: It's a slashy A/U story about how Season 8 might have been and contains no spoilers for the current season. By MonaCK and Cathy Roberts
Categories: Regular Characters: Dave Malucci, John Carter, Luka Kovac, Other-Female, Other-Male
Genres: General
Warnings: None
Challenges: None
Series: None
Chapters: 31 Completed: No Word count: 177069 Read: 685985 Published: August 30, 2004 Updated: September 10, 2007
Chapter Twenty-Nine by MonaCK
"Changes In Latitudes, Changes In Attitudes, Part 29"
By MonaCK and Cathy Roberts

Both Dave and Luka agreed with the doctor -- that they should stay out
of sight when the doctor entered the room. And they followed him up
the stairs, waiting for Mrs. Carter to situate herself in her lift so
she could meet them up top as well. And silently they stood while the
doctor first tried to knock on John's door.

As he walked up the stairs, Dr. Meyers tried to think of the best
tactic to use to get John to let him into the room. The one thing
that the doctor felt would never waver with John was his devotion to,
and love, for Millicent, so telling John he wanted to talk with him
about her condition would most likely gain him entrance. "John? It's
Dr. Meyers, may I come in? I'd like to update you on Millicent's

After Dave had left, John had once more curled up under the covers,
still crying. It was no good, none of it -- not his life or the way
he loved people. Just no good at all. He lifted his head when he
heard a soft knock on his door and then Dr. Meyers was asking to come
in. Had something happened to his grandmother?

John rushed out of the bed, leaving some of the covers trailing on the
floor in his haste. His hands were trembling as he unlocked the door
and then opened it. "Is Gamma okay? What's wrong?"

"Nothing's wrong, John. I just want to update you on how she's doing.
May I come in?" Dr. Meyers asked as his mind registered how John
appeared. He didn't like it at all and he was glad he had decided to
butt his nose into things. There was no way that John should have
been left alone for one hour, let alone five or six.

John nodded and was about to open the door wider when he heard someone
sniffle and it wasn't Dr. Meyers. Dave was using Dr. Meyers to get to
him -- and that made John angry. "What did Dave tell you? Never doesn't matter. Go away. All of you." John slammed the
door shut, quickly locking it again. The door was too heavy for anyone
to actually break down, despite Dave's earlier threat to do just that,
so John wasn't worried about that. Except that if Dave tried, he
might hurt himself. But Dr. Meyers was there and could help him if he
did. "Leave me alone!" John yelled through the door, hoping and
praying that this time he would be listened to.

Millicent was shocked at John's outburst and her heart ached for the
pain he was obviously feeling. "Let me get to the door," she said as
she rolled down the hallway to John's room. "John? Please open the
door. Dr. Meyers just wants to talk things over with you, but I
promise you that he won't mention Dave or Luka. Please, John?"

John frowned as he heard his grandmother's voice and he couldn't think
of what Dr. Meyers could possibly want to speak with him about, unless
the man hadn't been lying about wanting to update him on Millicent's
condition. "What does he want?" he asked, not willing to risk opening
the door to find out.

"John...I...I can't tell you through a closed door. Please open the
door," Millicent urged him.

John shook his head, even though he knew she couldn't see him. "No.
It's a trick. I'm fine and I don't want to talk to anybody. Just go
away and leave me alone. Please leave me alone!" He backed away from
the door, not wanting to listen to them any more.

Dave wanted to kick himself for sniffling at just that moment...that
moment when Dr. Meyers had actually gotten John to open the door. His
own emotions were right on edge, and he really didn't know what to do
anymore. John was obviously hurting, really hurting, and he was
fighting back like a caged animal who didn't want to be there anymore.

Luka's heart was breaking for John. He still wished that he knew what
it was that had set John off in the first place...all that he had done
was go and take a shower in the morning...and it was like some sort of
revelation had come to John while Luka was away, and he simply didn't
understand it at all. "Maybe...maybe I should try speaking to him?"

Dave quickly shook his head. "I don't think it'll work. Dr. Meyers,
I think we're gonna have to break in there...and you said you had a
sedative... a sedative worked last time this happened, too. Man, what
a mess, he's...really not doing well, is he? And I don't think that
either Luka or I are helping much here..."

Taking the paperclip he had been playing with out of his pocket, he
looked over to Dr. Meyers. "You ready to do this?"

Dr. Meyers nodded and reached into his pocket, pulling out his wallet
so he could retrieve a credit card. "You should get something ready.
Just enough to calm him, but not enough to put him out," he said to
Luka as he handed his Visa card to Dave.

Luka nodded, and opened up Dr. Meyers's medical bag, quickly finding
the meds and the syringe. While he prepared the dosage, Dave set to
work on John's door, easily picking the lock with the paperclip. He
turned towards the rest of the group as he was ready to open the door.
"You guys ready?"

Luka nodded. "I'm ready with the medicine..."

Millicent looked up at the men around her, tears in her eyes and
nodded. Dr. Meyers put his hand gently on her shoulder and also
nodded. "I'll try to talk with him once we're inside, but I'll need
the both of you behind me while I try to convince him to let us give
him the sedative. And Millicent, I really need you to stay out here."

Inside his room, John was frantic. He had heard voices outside of his
door and then watched with disbelief as the lock turned. He didn't
know whether to try to relock the door or to run -- although he really
had nowhere to run except the bathroom, and if they could unlock the
one door, then they could unlock that one, too. He looked around and
saw a vase of flowers. It was heavy enough to throw and he grabbed
it, ready to toss it toward the door if it should open -- not to hurt
anyone, but to warn them away, although he really hoped he wouldn't
have to resort to that.

"Stay out," he called to them. "I'm warning you...stay out of my room
and just leave me alone!"

Dave looked up towards the group, tears in his eyes again. "Man...he's
fucked up...he's really fucked up...I hope this works. I hope we can
at least calm him down..."

Dave turned the door, stepping back to let Dr. Meyers through first.
Both he and Luka lined up behind Dr. Meyers, close, but not too close,
ready to do whatever they had to do to try to get John to stop from
being so upset.

Dr. Meyers slowly opened the door, not sure where John was in the room
and not wanting to bang the door into him if he happened to be right
behind it. "John? I'm not going to hurt you, but I do need to speak
with you."

"Get out!" John yelled as he threw the vase, flowers and all, at the
door. It crashed against the wood and shattered, sending glass, water
and irises all over the floor. John frantically looked around for
something else to throw. "I warned you to stay out," he said as he
grabbed his clock radio, tearing the cord out from the wall as he
tossed that in the direction of the door as well and making the
plastic crack and scatter. "Stay out!"

The first crash hadn't really surprised Dr. Meyers, and the
possibility that John wouldn't welcome anyone into his room had been
the main reason why the man hadn't opened the door wider. When the
second object hit the back of the door, he turned to the others.
"Does anyone have any idea how much stuff he has in there that he can
throw? I'm more than willing to wait him out as opposed to us risking
being hurt by a flying object. I doubt if he's trying to hurt us and
I don't want to add to his issues if one of us should be hurt by

Millicent shook her head. "There are a few knick knacks, some
paintings and photographs...books, I think. I really don't know."
She looked up at Luka, her eyes begging him to remember. "You've
stayed in his room, Luka, what do you remember being in there?"

Another crash punctuated her question as something with glass in it
hit the door and broke.

Dave turned away as Mrs. Carter addressed Luka, not wanting to admit
he was still jealous over the fact that Luka had spent time in John's
room, and he hadn't. What did it really matter, though? At this
point, they all needed to work together to make sure John was
okay...and Dave understood this...but he still couldn't help but feel
the irrational feelings inside him.

Luka thought for a moment. "There's not much in there...books...some
cologne...which judging from the smell that's coming from the room, is
probably what he just threw..."

Another thud hit the door, and Luka surmised that was the beginning of
the book collection being thrown at them. The thuds were then coming
regularly. "I don't think there's much more that he can throw at us.
I would recommend at this point waiting until the sounds stop."

Dr. Meyers nodded. "I agree." He placed the toe of his shoe in the
small opening, not wanting to give John the chance to relock the door,
and then he waited. One benefit of letting John throw everything at
them was that he'd quickly tire himself out, which would definitely be
to their advantage should John refuse to be sedated.

Minutes later, John was feeling extremely frustrated. He had thrown
just about everything he could get his hands on at the door and it
hadn't closed at all. Damn them, he thought as he sank to his knees
in the middle of the debris strewn room. Damn them all. "Just go
away," he said, his voice hoarse from yelling and his energy spent.
He knew he couldn't keep them from coming in and it saddened him that
there was one more aspect of his life in which he had no control.
Resting his head in his hands, the only thing left for John to do was
to beg. "Please just go away. I'll be good and talk to you later,
but please, please, leave me alone now."

Luka spoke now. "I'm sorry, John, but we can't do that.
We're...we're all just worried about you, and we want to make sure
you're okay. If you let us in, and let us see that you're
okay...we'll leave you alone...please...please John..."

Dave nodded. He was too full of emotion, and for once the young
doctor was speechless. He just looked over towards Mrs. Carter and
Dr. Meyers helplessly -- hoping that they were doing the right thing.
This was too much like what had happened last time, only this time,
Dave was sure that he wasn't going to be the one spending the night
with John, making sure that he was okay. It was likely going to be
Luka, or no one at all. And Dave was just consumed with worry for
John to feel jealous over that.

John grabbed hold of Luka's words, knowing the man wouldn't lie to
him. "You promise? Once you see that I'm okay, you'll leave?" he
asked, getting to his feet and taking a tentative step toward the
partially opened door.

Luka looked over towards Dr. Meyers and Mrs. Carter, wondering why
they hadn't tried this approach in the first place. "Yes. We're
going to make sure you're okay...and then we'll leave. But we...we
need you to let us in. Please, John, we're worried about you..."

"I'm fine," John automatically replied as he took two more steps
toward the door. If Luka was there, then did that mean he had changed
his mind about dumping him? John found himself hoping so, but then
his hopes fell as he realized that he would have to not choose Luka,
either, and for the same reasons he couldn't choose Dave. It simply
wasn't fair to either man and they'd only be hurt in the long run.
But, he didn't have to tell Luka that right then. He could let Luka
see he was fine and then Luka would leave him alone -- and so would
the others -- and then John could have time to figure out how to tell
Dave and Luka that news in such a way as to get them to believe it.

"There's no need for you to worry," John said as he crossed the rest
of the space and put his hand on the door knob, ready to open the door
fully so they could all get their good look. "I'm fine," he repeated,
not realizing that the glass and other broken debris that he had just
walked over had cut his bare feet. At that point, John's body was
beyond feeling pain of any nature, although it might have registered
in his brain that he was hurt if he had happened to look behind him
and see the bloody footprints on the carpet, or even looked down at
his feet as they oozed blood beneath him. But he didn't do either of
those things, instead, his attention was fixed on the door and the
people on the other side of it as he opened it wider and forced
himself to smile at them.

"There. You're seeing me and I'm fine. Now you all can go."

Dave was the first to spot the blood, and his face paled. Had John
tried to kill himself, on top of everything else? But then he
realized that the blood was coming from his feet -- which didn't
change the worry -- only refocused it. "'re
are most definitely not okay," he said, as he took a step into the
room, with the others following behind.

The group was now inside, blocking the door from being closed again.
And Luka found himself walking closer to John, intent on helping him
back into the bed so he could take care of cleaning up John's cuts.
But then he realized that he still held the syringe in his hand, so he
looked helplessly over towards Dave.

Dave nodded, and focused his attention on John once more. "Let me
help you lie down. I just wanna take a look at your feet. Please,
man, you're bleeding..."

John had backed up into the bedroom when Luka and the others had
pushed their way through, not quite believing that Luka would make up
some story in order to not follow through on his promise. But then
Dave mentioned that he was bleeding and John looked down at his feet,
seeing blood there and on the carpet. Strange how it didn't hurt, he
thought, but he had no intention of letting anyone look at anything.

"I'm okay," he said, looking up and directly at Luka. "You said that
if I was okay you'd leave. So leave. All of you. They're just
scratches and I'm okay."

"John," Dr. Meyers said, "You're not okay. Please allow us to take a
look at your feet. If for no other reason, then do it for Millicent,
let her be satisfied that you're physically fine." Inwardly, he was
glad that Millicent had defied his request that she remain in the
hallway, since he knew that John would do just about anything for her.

John heard Dr. Meyers and he looked from the man over to his
grandmother, taking in her worried appearance and immediately feeling
guilty for causing that worry. He walked over to her wheelchair and
knelt down by it. "I'm okay, Gamma. Really. There's nothing for you
to worry about."

"Oh, John," Millicent's hands were shaking as she reached out to
gently stroke his hair. "There's so much for me to worry about, but
it would help if you'd let Dave and Dr. Meyers examine you. Please,

It always killed John to see tears in his grandmother's eyes, mostly
because Millicent Carter hardly ever cried, and this time was no
exception. He mutely nodded, then stood and walked over to the bed,
sitting down on the mattress. Once again, his focus landed on the
blood stains on the floor -- at least they were footprints and not
handprints, he thought, remembering back to that Valentine's night
when he had left quite a few bloody handprints on the floor of Curtain
Three. Those had been cleaned away, as had the rest of his blood and
Lucy's blood, and he was sure that the bloody footprints on his carpet
would also be cleaned away and forgotten in time. "I'm okay," he
repeated, but his hands were grasping the bottom sheet as he struggled
to find something -- anything -- to hold onto, just some little bit of
reassurance that he could control *something* in his life.

Dave tentatively walked a little bit closer, hoping that touching him
wouldn't send John into a panic like it had last time this had
happened. Last time John hadn't hurt himself, either. Dave had never
realized just how mentally unstable that John was, and in a way it was
almost good that all of this had happened. Maybe it was a cry for
help...he didn't know. But one thing Dave was aware of was the guilt
that he felt for letting things get this far in the first place.

"Okay, John, listen to me...I'm just gonna lift up your foot, and put
it on the bed, so I can see where the cuts are, okay? Let me do this
for you...let me help you stop hurting..." Because Dave knew that he
alone wasn't going to be able to stop John's heart from hurting, as
much as he wanted to, since he was partially to blame for the
heartbreak to begin with.

Luka stood back, ready with the sedative if Dr. Meyers requested it,
and feeling a bit frustrated that he was really unable to help. So
instead, he kept half an eye on Mrs. Carter, to make sure she was all
right with everything that was going on, because frankly, Luka was
worried about her as well.

John lay back on the bed, rolling onto his side so he wouldn't have to
see Dave and Luka and his grandmother or Dr. Meyers. He just wanted
them to take a look at his feet and leave. "It's just a few
scratches," he said. "Nothing to worry about. I'm okay and Luka said
you all would leave once you saw I was okay. He promised."

Dr. Meyers stepped over to Luka and silently took the syringe from
him. "I think he needs *you* more than he needs this right now," he
whispered, and then he went to stand beside Millicent, touching her
arm reassuringly. She looked up at him and managed a shaky smile,
then returned her attention to her grandson. If she ever got her
hands on Jenny, she'd kill the woman, even if she was Corrine's niece.
It was clear to Millicent that this...breakdown, or whatever it could
be called, could be traced back to that bitch and whatever it was she
had done to John.

Luka nodded, silently thanking the man as he handed over the sedative
to Dr. Meyers. Walking over to opposite side of John's bed, he sat on
the edge, turning his body so that he could look at John. "We're not
trying to hurt you, John...we just want to make sure you're okay...and
Dave is just going to check your feet now, and take out any glass that
might be in them, okay?"

Dave turned towards Dr. Meyers, indicated that he needed to use some
of the things that were in his medical bag. The older doctor
willingly gave the bag over, and Dave dug through it, picking out a
bottle of alcohol and a sterile gauze pad. "Okay, John, I'm warning
you, this might sting a bit, but it's only because I haveta clean out
the wound..." Dave knew that he was talking to another doctor, but he
was pretty sure that proper doctor procedure was not uppermost on
John's mind at that moment.

"It doesn't feel as if there's glass in either foot. I've stepped on
glass before and had a piece stuck in there, remember?" John asked
Dave over his shoulder. Then he frowned. "No, you wouldn't remember.
It was the day that Abby talked me into helping her replace the
aquarium in Luka's apartment and she forgot her key and she crawled in
through his window and a neighbor called the police." John found
himself smiling at the memory. "Right when we were ready to leave,
thinking we had managed to switch tanks, the doorbell rang and it was
the police. Then Luka showed up because they called him and you were
so angry." John looked up at Luka. "Do you remember that? You
wouldn't even look at us, you were that upset."

"I do remember that," Luka said, turning away from John. "I wasn't
very fond of you back know that know
how my feelings for you changed..." The older man was distraught,
trying to figure out why John was bringing all of this up, now. That
was ancient history.

Then John's smile vanished as he remembered something else. "That was
the day you were caught fucking that EMT in the ambulance and got
fired." He looked back over his shoulder at Dave, sadness in his
eyes. "That was when you first thought about leaving Chicago, wasn't
it? I know you didn't mention anything about it until a few days
after that, when we were finally able to get together to talk, but
that were already planning to leave me, weren't you?"

Dave looked up at John, surprise mixing with sadness as he looked over
to the man. "I...John, I didn't wanna leave you. I wanted to take
you with me. I...I needed to start a new life after everything that
happened at County. God, John, we've...we've been through this.
I...I slept with that woman out of anger. I shouldn't have done it.
I never meant to hurt you. God, John, I love you. I loved you then,
and I love you now."

Dave forced himself to look down at John's feet, not trusting himself
to look John in the eye any further. No. Dave had to focus on fixing
John, and making his physical pain stop.

"I know," John softly said. "I never meant to hurt you, either.
Either one of you." He looked back at Luka. "I'm sorry about last
night. I didn't mean to make you remember bad things. A person
should never have to remember anything that they don't want to, and it
was wrong of me to not even think about what I was saying. You were
right to see that I was selfish, so very right, and I don't understand
why you came back. Especially since I have to hurt both of you one
more time because I can't bear the thought of hurting either one of
you, and I know I will. It's my nature and I can't help it. I'll
hurt you over and over and over again and never see it, never
understand it, and I'm sorry about that."

John looked back at Dave. "I really am sorry. I never should have
asked if you'd still be my friend. I realized that this morning, too,
when I knew Luka had dumped me. I couldn't stand the thought of going
to work and just being his friend and nothing else, not now. And I
can't stand the thought of ever just being your friend, either." John
reached out with both hands, one arm stretched out toward Luka until
he could touch him and the other toward Dave until he was also
touching him. "It was selfish of me to ask that because I know how
much it would hurt you," he looked over at Luka, "both of you, to go
back to that. That's why I can't choose either one of you. Yes, that
means I'll be alone, or, rather, without love, but I can handle that.
I've lived without love this long and I can go back to that. But I
won't be alone. It's not in my nature to stay alone, and I know that,

Luka shook his head. "There is nothing to be sorry for," he said, his
brow furrowed in confusion. And as John continued, Luka shook his
head once more, this time his eyes opening in surprise. "But...John,
I didn't break up with you this morning, where did you get that
impression? I told you I would give you as much time as you need.
I...I got up to take a shower before going to work, and when I came
out, you were gone. I didn't say anything to you, why did you think
that I broke up with you?" Luka's voice was laced with hurt and
confusion, and he didn't even try to hide the fact that he was very,
very upset.

Dave was upset as well, and he gripped John's hand very tightly.
"John, I'm sorry about the phone call last night. I had too much to
drink...and I shouldn't have called. I'm...I'm so sorry man. I can't
deal with not having you in my life. Please, I'll...I'll give you all
the time you need, but, please don't...don't push me away. I can't be
without you in my life, and I don't think you can be without me
either." Dave knew John too well -- and he knew instinctively that
this was some sort of defense mechanism. It had to be -- for him to
all of a sudden make this decision. "And you're wrong about something
else too, you won't live without love, because pushin' us away,
pushing me and Luka away isn't gonna make us stop loving's
just not that easy, John."

This was one big mess, and Dave still knew that he was mostly to blame
for it. And he would spend his life making up for it if he had to.
"Maybe, I don't know...maybe we can try what you suggested...that the
two of us...share you..."

Luka's face blanched at those words, but he found himself nodding.
Anything, at that point, to keep John from continuing down this self
destructive path. Anything to make the man smile a genuine smile again.

John shook his head, then freed his hands, wrapping his arms around
his body and finding a spot on the ceiling to look at since he
couldn't bear to see Dave or Luka in pain. He wanted so much to take
them up on that offer, but he knew he couldn't -- it would hurt them
both so very much.

"No, I can't do that. It will hurt you too much, you said so. Both
of you said so. I don't want to hurt you any more, I just don't. And
I will, even if I kept both of you. I know I will. Some other person
will smile at me, then be nice to me, and I'll be her or his friend
and think that's a good thing and then one day I'll get kissed and
I'll kiss back and one thing will lead to another and I'll end up
hurting you both. I can't help it. My mind might want one thing, but
my always wants another. Always. And neither one of you
needs someone like me in your life. I'll only disappoint you and then
you'll leave me in the end. It's better this way. Just like you said
in my dream, Dave. Have some hurt now to avoid the bigger hurt later,
because I'm just not good enough for either one of you. That's not
what you said then. You kept saying you weren't good enough for me,
but I knew better. I know...what I am. I've always known."

Tears filled Dave's eyes again, and he frustratingly wiped them away.
He had shed more tears over John in the past few days then he had
remembered crying in his whole life, and he was tired of it. "What
you're doing right now is hurting me," Dave said, no longer caring
that Luka was still in the room. And then something that John said
caught his ear. "What...what is it that you think you are, John?"

If they could get him to talk about talk about Jenny - maybe,
maybe it would lead to something else -- some kind of revelation, some
way to start John healing again.

Luka stood back, knowing that too many people talking right at that
moment would not be a good thing. It was best to try to let Dave draw
it out of John..

"You said it once, Dave. You said it the nice way, but it's still the
same thing when all is said and done. A sex kitten. An insatiable
sex kitten. A slut. I was born knowing how to pleasure someone, it's
what I'm good at. A natural born cock-sucker. Hell, I shouldn't have
gone into medicine, I would have made so much more money being a whore
since I can bring pleasure to women and men." It pained John to have
to voice his failings, especially in front of his grandmother, but he
couldn't deny what he was, not any longer. Getting that truth out
would make Dave and Luka understand that they were better off without
him and never should have wasted their love on him in the first
place. No one else had.

Dave's first instinct was to look over towards Mrs. Carter and make
sure she was okay with hearing this. And then, he turned his
attention back to John. "Don't you understand," he said, slightly
embarrassed that he was talking about his sex life in front of John's
family. "Don't you understand that if you told me that you never
wanted to have sex again, that I would still want to be with you? I
love *you*. Yeah, the sex is nice, but this is about so much more
then that. God, John...I think about you *all* the fucking time, and
*not*about the sex. You are *not* a whore...and...and..."

Dave was getting frustrated, and he had to stop speaking. He looked
over towards Luka, tears welling in his eyes once more. Luka nodded,
and brought his attention fully on John. He took a moment to compose
himself, still trying to recover from everything that had been said so
far that afternoon. " need to understand, John...what
happened with Jenny...whatever it was that she said to's
*not* true. You are worth *so* much more than that..."

"It wasn't just Jenny, Luka. I could have maybe forgotten about what
she said if she had been the only one. There was Alex and...." John's
voice trailed off as he realized that they were talking about Jenny in
front of his grandmother and he couldn't do that. He wasn't supposed
to ever say anything about Jenny. Never. He finally looked at Luka,
feeling more than a bit of panic. "I was never with anyone named
Jenny, I don't know who you're talking about."

Millicent move her wheelchair a little closer to the bed. "John, it's
going to be all right. I know about Jenny," she gently said.

John abruptly sat up, puzzled. "You know? He told you? But he told
me to never tell anyone about her, that I had embarrassed him more
than enough as it was and he didn't want any of you ever being hurt
because of what I did."

Millicent didn't know what to say to that revelation. John was
admitting that someone in the family or household knew what had
happened and she wanted to keep him talking, but she wasn't sure how
to do that without letting him know that this mysterious 'he' hadn't
said anything at all to her.

Dave was completely confused. As was Luka. But there was something
that Dave wanted to clear up right away. "John...I swear I never told
your Grandmother *anything* about Jenny, I swear."

Luka shook his head. "Neither did I, John, but, I do
wonder...who...who is this Alex?" That was a name that Luka hadn't
recognized. Was it a family member of John's? Was that someone else
who John had told about Jenny?

John scowled at Dave and ignored Luka's questions. It was bad enough
they all knew about Jenny, they didn't need to know how he had
embarrassed himself with Alex. Then again, maybe they did need to
know, since it showed even more just what he was. "First of all, I
know neither one of you told Gamma. You weren't there to see it, were
you? As for Alex..." John suddenly wasn't sure about talking about
Alex in front of his grandmother. She had been more than
understanding about him and Luka and him and Dave, and she didn't seem
to be too disappointed in him about Jenny, but that would change when
he told them all about Alex. "Gamma, maybe you and Dr. Meyers should
go downstairs now? You can see that I'm fine, so there's no need for
you to worry any more about me."

Millicent didn't want to go, but she nodded, thinking that perhaps she
and Dr. Meyers could figure out on their own just who John meant about
a man who had been there to see whatever it was that had happened with
Jenny. Had it been her husband? Had that really been what J.C. had
meant when he had said, time and time again, that John deciding to be
a doctor was his way of 'getting back' at him? It would be just like
the man to have known something so devastating and keep it a secret
for all those years. "We'll be down in my room," she said, and then
the two of them left, with Dr. Meyers pulling the door closed behind them.

John looked at Dave. "Are you done?" He wasn't sure why it was
taking Dave so long to simply look at his feet, but then again, when
he had sat up, he had moved, and his feet weren't facing Dave any
longer. Still, how long did it take to clean a few scratches?

Dave looked back down at John's feet, reaching out to touch one as he
spoke. "I'm almost done," he said, looking up towards John again.
"Why don't you tell us about Alex while I finish this up? I thought I
knew most of your friends...but I never heard ya talk about Alex
before today," Dave said sincerely, casting Luka a quick glance.

Luka nodded, and took his place on the edge of John's bed once more.
Turning towards John, he waited with patient eyes for him to speak again.

John lay back down so that the soles of his feet would face Dave. "He
sent me away, just like Jenny had said he would if he ever found out.
If I was bad, then I'd be sent to boarding school, it was that
simple. So, I went. They'd already started the school year though,
and I was in late. All of the kids my age were already assigned
roommates, so I ended up with Alex. He didn't really want some
homesick kid sharing a room with him, so he mostly ignored me, which
was fine with me. I was too worried about what the teachers were
going to do because Jenny had said that the men who worked at boarding
schools liked the boys, you know?" John found himself staring at
Luka's knee, a safe place to look, he thought.

"But, I think she was wrong about that and probably said it to scare
me because as it got closer to Christmas, none of them even hinted
anything, which was fine with me. And it was at Christmas when Alex
started to like me, I think. Gamma and grandfather were out of the
country and I found out that my parents were also traveling and I
couldn't come home. Alex was going home and he invited me to come
with him. At first I didn't want to go, because I didn't want to be a
pest, but he insisted, so I went. His family was really nice about
having me around and I had a pretty good time even though I wasn't
home. I wanted...I...Jenny had said..."

Saying what he had done was going to be a lot more difficult than John
had thought it would be.

Dave's touch was gentle on John's feet, and he listened intently as he
heard John speak about his past. Again Dave felt something akin to
anger building up inside him, but this time towards this guy Alex --
whoever he was -- for also very likely taking advantage of a young
boy. "Who...who sent you away, John?" he asked, his voice soft.
"And...what had Jenny said? What did Alex do?"

Luka kept himself close to John's side, but didn't touch him --not
wanting to send John back into his shell again. This was good...John
talking this out -- whether John realized it yet or not.

"She always said that the best way to properly thank someone for being
kind to you, or doing something for you, was to give them pleasure.
And Alex had been nice to me...more than nice...I knew that I liked it
when Jenny...when she sucked on my cock, so I thought that Alex would
like it, too. We stayed there through New Year's, so on New Year's
Day I decided that I'd wake him up by pleasing him. He didn't seem
too happy about it when he woke up, but then he seemed to like it. He
kept running his hands through my hair and telling me how good it felt
and that I was doing a great job...better than a woman, even, and he
asked if I had been born just knowing how to do that." John shrugged.

"Looking back now, I guess I was, although I didn't realize it then.
So, we went back to school and Alex liked me a lot better then. He
wouldn't let me sleep in his bed with him or anything like that, but
every morning I'd wake him up that way and every night before he went
to sleep he'd ask me to suck him off and I would. I thought...I
thought he was really liking me. He kept saying how much he loved
what I did with my mouth, but...but when he graduated, he didn't even
invite me to go out to dinner with him and his parents, even though he
did ask me to suck him off before his parents got there. The seniors
didn't leave the school when they graduated, so he had a few more days
to stay there, but he still didn't say anything about how he felt.
That last day, he packed, never even looking at me. And then, when I
thought he was going to leave without even saying goodbye, he turned
to me and undid his pants, telling me he needed me to suck him off one
more time. And when he came, he just laughed and said something about
how lucky he had been to have had a born cocksucker for a roommate and
then he picked up his suitcase and left."

John was about to stare a hole through Luka's leg as he remembered how
hurt he had been that Alex hadn't said anything else. "It was my
birthday and my first present was finding out that Alex didn't really
care at all. Then school ended and I went home and found out that
Jenny had gotten married and I never saw her again, and I realized
then that she hadn't really cared either. I think it's safer that
way, for them, anyway. Because when you care about someone like me,
then you'll just get hurt when they move on to the next body, and
there's always a next body. I guess I can understand them not caring,
but I don't understand why they left without at least saying goodbye.
They were the only ones though...everyone else said goodbye or fuck
you or something...until you left." John directed that last bit
toward Dave, but he didn't dare look around at the man because he
didn't want to see if he had succeeded in making Dave realize just how
much of a nothing he really was.

To be continued.
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