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Chapter Seven

A son. Dave had a son. A four year old son named Matthew, that had to
have been conceived around three months after Dave had called it quits
with John. Three months. Three fucking months!

It was making John go out of his mind. It had taken him *years* to get
over Dave. Not months, years. Years!! He'd moped around for the
longest time, locking himself into his room for hours on end,
sometimes days. Hell, it'd nearly taken him three months to get rid of
all the crap that he'd accumulated while in a relationship with Dave:
pictures, prizes won at the boardwalk, souveniers from trips.. the
bedsheets.. even clothes that he'd worn, like that sweater Dave loved
on him.. all of that had gone into the trash. Well, eventually into
the trash; he'd broken a lot of the items in anger first.

Three months, John thought, his eyes stinging as he stood in the same
supply closet he'd been standing in for an hour. He rubbed his mouth,
fighting back the tears. Jesus Christ. Even now Dave had the power to
make him feel this way. Again. This was the second time he'd had his
heart broken by the same man.

He was "fucked up." He was "too into the scene." Oh, whatever, John
seethed. Had he been fucked up when he'd decided to get into the scene
in the first place?? Or maybe he'd just missed John so much he'd
decided to party the pain away. Yeah, whatever.

Or maybe he'd just missed John so much he'd decided to not feel any
pain at all. That's what drugs did, right? Make you numb. Or, at
least, make you feel something else. Maybe he really hadn't been
himself when he'd fucked that girl. But, Jesus Christ, a son??

He rubbed his eyes tiredly. This was too much to handle.

For who? his alter-ego asked him, the part of him that wasn't
completely self-absorbed. Imagine how Dave feels.

He didn't want to. Because that would mean he'd have to feel something
other than bitter anger towards him.

It might also mean that maybe Dave had been hurting too, his alter-ego

He told that annoying voice to take a hike. He didn't need this shit.



He rolled his eyes. He didn't need this shit!

"What do you want?" he snapped, reaching forward to rummage through
the shelves for something he didn't need. He just wanted to look busy,
to not look like he'd been hiding in here crying.

"I don't know," Dave replied, almost urgently, and then he calmed. "I
don't know. But I.. " He paused, pursing his lips, trying to find the
words. "I can't take back what happened. I made a mistake. And you're
right, I am going to live with it. I do live with it. But I just.. I
just wanted you to know that it didn't take me three months to get
over you. I'm here, aren't I?"

John looked at him, surprised. He *was* here, wasn't he? John hadn't
gone to Grenada, Dave had come to Chicago.

John looked away. "Is that it?"

They both knew he wasn't just asking if Dave was finished speaking. He
wanted to know.. was that it? Was that the simple answer to all of
this? Because even if it had taken John three years to get over him,
Dave had never gotten over him at all. And there only had to be one
reason why: Dave still loved him, even after all these years.

"Yeah," Dave replied. "That's it."

"Okay," he said, but he was far from okay. He was exact opposite of
okay, in fact. "Um, excuse me. I have to go."

He slipped past Dave, but the doorway wasn't wide enough. He brushed
past him, his chest touching Dave's, Dave touching his heart. He kept
moving, trying not to be fazed by how warm Dave was, how that warmth
shot straight through him, but it was hard to ignore leaving a part of
yourself behind, the other half of you.

"John," Dave called.

He turned, shaking his head desperately. "Please, don't."

He didn't. He just nodded. But John knew. Dave loved him, and he loved
Dave, and there was nothing anybody could do about it. He knew. He'd
known all along.


To be continued..
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