“You behaved really badly today, didn`t I ask you to behave proper? To swear like that, and in front of the vicar no less. All in all, you have been acting quite impossibly this summer.” Rachel Wills ranted on to her grandchild, who stood in the guestroom, hanging his head down, looking as if he would be sorry, even though he really wasn`t.
Michael had been in the villages own summer feast, with his grandma and grandpa. He had played with his ten year old cousin; Tara, when some red haired boy, from her school, had come over to them and started calling names at her, making her cry. Michael just couldn`t stand seeing his cousin being insulted like that, so he had charged towards the boy and knocked him down and started to fight with him. When some adults came to separate them, and ask them, what was their fight all about, he had told them this;
“That bloody idiot, that shithead, he called Tara…I won`t repeat what.” And yes, the vicar had been there, and he had been horrified of his choice of words, as were several other adults on the scene. `I wish they had heard what that idiot said.` Michael thought, while listening to his grandmothers ranting.
“You will apologize to God, for all your sins.” Rachel insisted.
”Sorry God.” He said with tired voice.
“Not like that! You`ll pray, in a way that God listens, He will not listen to that. Go on, kneel in front of the bed and cross your hands on top of it.” She explained. Michael sighed and went into the position that she had wanted. He thought that it was just stupid. He was sure that the God would listen, without him being forced to be in this stupid position. Wasn`t God suppose to hear everything? Isabella had told him that, and besides Isabella was much nicer than Rachel and Michael was sure that she was more wiser as well. He closed his eyes.
“Pray out loud.” Rachel told him and sat on the chair near the door. Michael wondered what he should say.
“Dear Father, who are in heaven. I did wrong to day, I cursed and I fought. Although, if you ask me, that boy Tommy deserved it. You must have heard what he said to Tara? Well, anyway, I am sorry about what I said, and what I did…” He opened his other eye, and looked at his grandmother, who didn`t seem pleased with this. He tried to remember other things that she had complained to him about that summer, she must have expected for him to apologize those times too. “I`m also sorry that I didn`t eat those peas and asparagus the other day, or before. I just don`t like them, and I thought that I would puke if I ate them. Grandma said that I should eat what ever is offered, because there are a lot of children that won`t have food at all. That`s is really sad to hear, but I`m sorry if I am a bit stupid, I just can`t understand how it`s going to help them, if I eat my peas and asparagus? I feel fine without them, quite full enough I mean, wouldn`t they be happier if I didn`t eat them and give them to those who would want to eat them? Thank you, if you could answer this one for me, because I have been wondering about it quite a long time. I will, however, promise to eat them, if it really helps someone. Although I think You have a lot of other things to think about, then what to answer to this. Like wondering how we could give them the food, or how we could stop all the wars?…”
Grandmother didn`t seem very happy with this either, so Michael thought it was best to continue. “Three days`s ago I broke grandma`s inheritance vase, but it was an accident! I`m not usually that clumsy, but there was a terrible thunderstorm outside, and I got scared of the noise and the lightning, so I stumbled over where the vase was. I`m sorry anyway, I`ll try not to be so clumsy in the future, or if I crawl in the future, then I`ll try to hit on something not so valuable. Hm…What then…Oh, and I`m sorry that I called Kate O`Dwyer a fat cow, I was just mad at her, because she called me a Spanish bastard, who has no manners. I thought it was pretty unreasonable, because: a) I`m not a bastard. b) I do have manners, I just didn`t like that she tried to kiss me, and I made it very clear to her, and c) I`m the citizen of Britain, not Spain. Do not get me wrong Lord, I wouldn`t mind being all Spanish, but it was a not right what she said. I think people should think of a better things to say, if they mean to bother someone with it. I admit that what I said wasn`t very clever either, but what can one expect after the thing she said to me? Kate, however, is fat, but she is not a cow, not by word anyway. I hope that I`m not waisting too much of Your time with this, but grandma said that I should apologize, and I quite agree if I indeed have upset You. I`m sorry and I thank You. With kind and honorable regards; Michael Wills” Michael finished his pray, and looked over at his grandma with a smile on his face. She looked like she had just eaten a sour apple.
“Hasn`t your mother taught you how one prays properly? What in God`s name was that?” She asked and rose up from her chair. “You finish pray by saying Amen, not like that, and over all your pray was…”
“I`m sorry to interrupt grandma. I just thought that God might want to hear something different once and a while. At least I think it would be quite boring to hear the same lines over and over again.” Michael said and rose up.
“What in the world am I going to do with you Michael?! Tomorrow I`ll take you to see the vicar, you will apologize to him and then he shall tell you how to pray proper.”
“Alright grandma, if you insist.” He said disliking the idea with all that he was. He didn`t like the vicar, he was somehow a very strange man.
Michael didn`t know why it had returned to him. For some reason, he noticed thinking of his childhood a lot. He remembered the day after when he had indeed went to see the vicar. The man had made him to read parts of the Bible out loud and at the same time, this odd man had looked at him closely, and in a manner that felt really uncomfortable. At times he had walked behind his back, and breathed on his neck. “Read this son.” He had told him and shown him the right places. The day had been long and dull. It had been beautiful and warm outside, and he had just wanted nothing more than to go outside and play. He didn`t understand why he had to read the Bible. He had just defended his cousin, why did they punish him for that? And he didn`t think that there was something wrong with his pray, why did everything have to be so serious all the time? He had only been 8-years old at the time. Now days it was beginning to be difficult to believe in God, or then He hated him very much and was the way that most people believed Him to be.
Jean walked into the room, carrying a tray. He sat next to him on bed, and placed more pillows under his head, so that it would be easier for him to eat. Michael`s hands were once again locked onto the bedposts, over his head. “You must eat.” Jean said. On the tray, was a bowl of soup, some bread and a glass of watter. Jean brought the spoon close to his mouth, and Michael opened his mouth and ate. He didn`t like this helpless feeling, having him feeding him, but this wasn`t the worse they had done, so what was the point to argue anymore. He was hungry, so hungry that he was tired to move or speak. He ate, because he wanted to survive. He wanted to go home and see his loved ones once more.
Once he had eaten, he laid his head back onto the pillow, he was exhausted. He looked at Jean with his tired eyes.
“What happened to us Jean? Why did everything change?” Michael asked quietly.
“I don`t know, you and Sam…” Jean started, and Michael was beginning to feel tired hearing that, but he had to keep this feeling to himself.
“I did so wrong Jean, I was just so mad at you…I shouldn`t have left you like that…You were right, he can`t touch me the way you do, it`s not the same as it is with you.” Michael said, and this was true, Sam couldn`t touch him the way Jean had, because he could never hurt him. But Jean would be stupid enough that he would think something else from what he said. Jean looked at him with confusion, then a tender smile rose to his lips.
“Really?” He asked and played his fingers in Michael`s soft hair.
“Really…Only you made me enjoy it, only with you, it felt good and right.” Michael said once he had closed his eyes. He was thinking about Sam in his mind, the words he spoke, were really meant for him, not Jean.
He opened his eyes and saw that the man was smiling to him.
“Do you love me Michael?” Jean asked. Michael had to close his eyes again and take a deep breath.
“Yes.” He answered.
“Say it then, tell me that.” Jean asked, his hand touching his face. Michael wondered why it felt so hard to say it, those were just words, but they were important words. He thought about Sam, keeping him firmly on his mind.
“ I love you.” `Sam` He added silently. Jean`s smile only grew.
“I love you too Michael.” He whispered and leaned in to kiss him. Michael felt sick. `Your love is nothing more than a sick obsession, mixed with lust.` He thought, trying to kiss him back like they had kissed before. He had to do this, Jean was his chance to save himself.
“I could take you away, we could travel to southern France, just the two of us.” Jean whispered, waking Michael from his thoughts. `Oh my dear God, it worked.` He thought, slightly relieved, but he knew that the game hadn`t been won just yet.
“I would love that Jean, I need you.” Michael answered, and forced a smile.
“I`ll try to think of a way to save you chéri, don`t worry, I`ll save you.” Jean said. `Save me?! You`re the one who brought me here, you fucking idiot!` Michael`s mind was screaming, but he managed to keep the smile on his face.
“I trust you, help me Jean, save me.” Michael whispered, and Jean kissed him again.
“Try to get some sleep, I`ll come back later.” Jean promised, rose up with the tray, and left.
It was evening already, and he was alone in the dark room. He hated the dark. He wasn`t able to sleep well, he was just too scared to sleep. Memories run through his mind, as an endless current. Fear and pain, happiness and love. He wanted back the former, but knew that he couldn`t have that. He wanted back the happiness, but didn`t have the fate, that there would be any left for him. Everything was gloomy and dark, endless suffering and fear.
The sort time, that he had slept, he had seen a dream, where dark, deep river, separated him from the beautiful meadow and the sun, where everyone, who had ever mattered to him were, everyone he had ever loved. Sam was the one closest, trying to reach him, telling him that he needed to try. He had tried for his lover, but could not reach him. Everything around him, had been dark, the shadows clutched on to him, not letting go. He couldn`t reach Sam, he couldn`t reach into the sun, and the warmth. Perhaps it had been an omen, he didn`t know. He was just so tired, and there were times, when his mind tried to convince him in giving up, giving up on death. He didn`t know where he got the strength not to listen, perhaps it was his love for Sam? Or perhaps it was a stupid, stubborn will to live, even though life had given him so much pain and suffering.
`Not everything was suffering.` He reminded himself, and once again he remembered his lover, and what it had felt like being next to him, what it had felt like making love with him. It was so odd, that the thing, that had brought so much pleasure with Sam, which had been so beautiful, and good, was here now, and had been before, the worst torture that he knew. `Life wasn`t always suffering.` His mind reminded him again. And he also remembered his childhood. He remembered the sun, all the summers, plays with Tony, the way Isabella had smiled, the soft voice of his mother, good night kisses, what it had felt like to fancy someone, what it had felt like to fall in love and be loved. `Everything was not bad.` He thought over, and over again. He needed to remember the good, he needed to hold on to that, so that he wouldn`t give up. He needed to see his family, and tell them, that he loved them.
The door opened, lights went on. Michael looked at Ricky, who neared the bed. He opened the handcuffs, and pulled him up with force.
“You didn`t think that it was over yet, did you?” Ricky asked with evil voice, and started to drag him out from the room. Michael tried to fight against him, but he was just too weak.
“We`re going to wash you up.” Ricky told him, when bringing him into the bathroom. He pushed Michael under the shower.Michael looked at him, anger, aversion and the fear filling his mind, he saw him holding a gun in his hand. “Better clean yourself good, right sweetheart?” Ricky grinned, playing with the gun in his hand.
“You have no heart.” Michael said with a quiet voice.
“Heart? What would I do with that?” He laughed. ”Mmm…You look good, so fucking sexy there.” He said then, touching his back, letting his hand to slide down onto his buttocks. It was no point to resist him. Michael let the watter run down on his body. He closed his eyes, when he felt him washing him with soap in his hands, touching him everywhere. He didn`t know, how he could take it again, the pain seemed to eat him inside. `Please lett this pain end.` He prayed silently and lifted his hands up to his face, feeling the water on his skin, it could be the last time he would feel it, he didn`t know. He tried to forget about Ricky and his rough hands and concentrate on the feeling of the warm watter.
Ricky closed the tap, took a towel and dried him. Michael let him do this, and then wrapped the towel around his waist, a faint attempt to protect his own nudity, that made him such an easy victim. Ricky pulled him in front of the mirror, standing behind him.
“Look up.” He told him. Michael lifted his gaze up, and looked at himself, and the face of the man behind him. His own face, so familiar, yet at the same time so strange, his own face. He hated himself, hated the way he looked like, the pride was forever lost. The distant, inconstant memory of his former self, looked at his reflection with pity. `You could have had anyone, and now look at yourself!` The brightness of his eyes was gone, he looked tired, a mere shadow of his former self.
”I still remember the night that I first saw you, you looked so high and mighty, and so sexy, I saw the way the others were looking at you and I made my mind that I would have you, that I would brake you, that confidence, and that pride… You`re so beautiful, and it would be a shame to kill that kind of beauty while so young, when you would have so much of that beauty left, many years still…” Ricky spoke, pressing himself tighter against him. He bite his neck with his teeth. Michael couldn`t say a word, he was feeling so numb inside. “Perhaps…hm…perhaps we won`t kill you, we could come up with something else…Your beautiful body, would give pleasure so much longer. Maybe will keep you, so good and sexy whore you are.” Ricky whispered. Michael closed his eyes. `I would rather die a thousand deaths.` He thought and almost said it out loud, but thought better.
“I hate you.” He said instead. Ricky only laughed.
“I know sweetheart, I know.” He said.
The memories filled his mind once more. He remembered his best friend Tony, his first love, those cool summer nights, together, out, drinking, having fun. All those crazy ideas they had had, all those dreams of future, that had broke, piece by piece, when now, nothing was left. `Tony…` Thinking about him, hurt the most, everything was still picture clear in his mind. The sound of Tony`s voice, the way he had smelled like, what it had felt like being close to him. It was odd, how some moments stuck to your mind so clear, for many years. `If you saw me now, would you even recognize me anymore?` The weak voice inside him asked.
Ricky`s lips pressed against his neck, his teeth, small bite, his hand under the towel on his waist, squeezing him tightly. Michael groaned quietly.
”This night will be so much fun sweetheart, how I will enjoy it.” Ricky whispered, looking at him closely through the mirror. Michael hated when he called him sweetheart, it was too gentle word coming from the mouth of such a monster.
Ricky leaded him out from the bathroom, not into the bedroom, as he first thought, not into the living room, but towards the hall.
“Where are we going?” Michael asked in confusion, and noticed his voice trembling slightly. They stopped in front of the dark wooden door.
“You`ll see.” Ricky grinned, when opening the door. The stone steps leaded down. “Go.” Ricky told him, and Michael took insecure steps down the cold stairs, Ricky was right behind him.
`The cellar.` Michael remembered the cellar in his home, and how he had feared the place when he had been a child, and when he had to get something from there. He remembered the dimness, and the food closet of the cellar. He had been sure that there lived a bogyman, who just waited it`s chance to catch him. He remembered how the door had creaked, when one had opened it, and even greater darkness had come against him. His small hands had tried to find the light switch, it always seemed to be too high up for him to reach. He had tried to lean forward, one leg between the door, keeping it from closing. He had tried to reach to the jam char, something had touched him, he had been sure of it. Panic rose.
“Mommy!…Mom! the bugbear is there and it touched me!” He had screamed and searched safety from the gentle eyes of his mother.
“Sweetheart, there`s nothing in there, you`re just imagining, our imagination sometimes tricks us.”
“But it is, the bugbear is there…it is.” He had told her, firmly believing in it.
“Oh my poor little bambi, do you want me to come down there with you and look?” She had smiled, and received a fearful nod for answer. She had took her sons hand in hers, and walked towards the cellar with him. Down the stairs, lights on. Then in front of the horrible door, she had opened it, creaking sound, lights on.
“Look sweetheart, there is nothing in here, no reason to fear. The darkness sometimes fools us in seeing and feeling things, that are not real.” She had told him with a gentle voice, stepped in further and taken the jam char in her hand. Michael had looked at her, and then into the food closet, that didn`t seem so scaring now. His mother had pressed a gentle kiss on his forehead and smiled. “Come now little one, lets go upstairs.” The light closed, then the door. Back upstairs, into the kitchen, but Michael still wasn`t convinced. The bugbear, must have been cleaver enough to hide from his mother, but she would protect him, all he had to do was scream for her, and the bugbear would be powerless.
But now, as he stood in this other cellar, he knew, he could scream as much as he could, and no one would come to his help. The lights didn`t help anymore either, the evil did not care, not anymore. He looked around his new surroundings, quite cozy for a cellar, someone would have said. The soft yellow light, couch against the wall, wooden couch-table, an armchair, yellow rag rug, above, near the ceiling, one small window; it was so dark outside already. There was also a small tv in there. Then he saw the video camera, and looked at it with disgust. He wrapped his arms around himself, and stood in the middle of the room, feeling scared of what was to come, no where to hide now.
Ricky came closer to him.
“Well, sweetheart, you know what happens? They say, that they haven`t had enough of you, that they haven`t had a big enough price of the trouble bringing you here. We have to fix that of course. This will be a long night for you.” Ricky smiled and touched his cheek. Michael startled, taking few steps back. Ricky however, came near again and took a hold of his wrists, his hold was strong.
“Let go!” Michael screamed. The will to struggle had awoke once more in his tired body. Ricky laughed at him.
“Let go? Oh Michael, wouldn`t it be easier to give up already?” He asked with amusement.
“I`ll never give up, never!” Michael screamed, his eyes lightening from fury. He fought with his remaining strength against him. Ricky pushed him against the wall, his head hit the stone wall, and a gasp escaped from his lips.
“It`s your choice, actually I quite like this when you struggle so much. It gets me so hard. That`s the best part of you, you don`t give in easily, many others would have broke a long time ago, but not you, not you pretty one.” Ricky spoke, his hot breath was on his face.
“You fucking perverse bastard!” Michael hissed. Wondering where had this fire to fight come from. Ricky only laughed, his laughter made him feel sick. He pressed against him violently.
“You would know that.” He whispered, and kissed him with that violent way of his, drawing blood.
Michael tried to kick him away, and soon Ricky lifted his head up, not releasing his hold on him. Ricky licked his lips.
“Your blood tastes good.” He laughed evilly. And then Michael heard the door open, steps echoing on the steps. Michael gasped, his body tensed from fear.
He looked at the men that had come down, Jean was with them. He sat farther away from the rest of them and lifted a bottle up to his lips. `You pitiful, weak bastard!` Michael thought, fear growing inside. Ricky pulled him to the middle of the room, and only then Michael noticed the shackles, coming from the roof. Joe hold him from behind, when Ricky lifted his hands up, locking them up. His position was anything but comfortable.The men looked at him for a while, Ricky grinned, came near to him again and pulled the towel off of him. Another violent kiss, Michael tried to take a step back, but running from him was impossible now. He looked at Jean, trying to plead with his eyes for his help, but the man looked away from him, like in quilt. Ricky opened his belt and pulled it off.
“Everyone who runs from me, get punished because of it.” Ricky said stepping behind him and Michael knew what was coming. He felt the firs stroke on his lower back and jerked, then there was another, and another. `I can take this, I can.` He kept telling himself, as the beating continued. Although he had promised himself not to cry, and that he would not beg, whit each coming stroke, it was beginning to feel impossible. That was what Ricky was after. His eyes were glimmered from his tears, he felt so humiliated, and the thought that this would only be the beginning of something worse, didn`t help at all. The moans of pain, escaped from his lips.
“Ricky…” His voice was almost a whisper.
”Yes darling?” His voice was cold, but pleased at the same time. The beating had stopped.
“Please…no more.” Michael hated himself, for saying that, begging in front of them all. Ricky circled him around, stepping in front of him, and lifting his chin up. There was a smile of triumph on his lips.
“No more? I knew that I could make you beg.” After saying that he released him from the shackles and Michael let himself fell onto the cold stone floor.
For a moment he just lied there, but soon the rough hands pulled him up to his knees. He looked at the eyes of the bald headed guy, with tattoos. The man kissed him, almost as violently as Ricky had done. His lips were burning, and he could taste the blood in his mouth. He started struggling again, pushing him away, and for his surprise, he succeeded in it. Ricky however stopped him, and pulled him up to his feet`s, pressing him against the cold wall.
“Michael, listen…that boyfriend of yours; Samuel, is it? He`s pretty fine, quite delicious looking I could say. I can imagine him having almost as beautiful body as you do, firm and…” Ricky smiled, looking at his shocked reaction, Michael hardly dared to breath. Then Ricky continued.
“You know I like brunets better…But I think, that I could make exception with your dear Sam.” He had an evil grin on his face.
“No! You couldn`t…Don`t you dare to touch him!” Michael screamed in shock.
“Oh, sweetheart, what could you do to stop me? You know I could do it, it wouldn`t be even that hard. He doesn`t even know how I look like, does he?” Ricky said, enjoying to see the distress on his face. Michael could feel the tears falling down even harder.
“No!…You can`t, I hate you, I hate you, I hate you!!! You will not touch him!!!” He screamed as loud as he could. From the corner of his eye, Michael could see the satisfied look on Jean`s face, as he had thought about Sam`s suffering. `You fucking sick bastard!` Michael thought of Jean. His breathing tensed.
“I won`t do it if…” Ricky started releasing his grip on him. Michael let himself slit against the wall, onto the floor.
“Please, no…I`ll do anything, anything at all, just promise not to touch him.” Michael whispered, with tear filled voice, he looked up to the man standing in front of him.
“Good, just what I wanted to hear.” Ricky said. Michael closed his eyes, and felt so empty inside. Somewhere, from the closed memory`s of his mind, he could hear Sam`s voice. `I love you.` The voice said, sounding so kind, gentle and loving. He could remember the soft kisses on his skin, the touch of the soft hand, they way Sam had looked at him; always loving, always admiring, never blaming, never hating, always wanting. `No, I can`t think of you now.` And at that moment he felt the violent hands on his skin, lifting him up once more.
Other man behind him, other on the front. Other kissed his bruised lips, the other bite his neck. He could feel how hard they already were. His throat was being bitten, he groaned as he felt the teeth biting into his tender skin. The other one`s nails dug into his hips.
“I want to hear him scream.” Ricky said, some where near. He was forced onto his knees, and the man in front of him, opened his pants.
“Take it in your mouth, vous stupide Anglais putain!” Jacques voice commanded, as he grasped his hair roughly. Michael opened his un-willing mouth, and felt the man starting to fuck him there violently, Michael gagged.
The other man had knelled behind him, still leaving biting marks on his neck. Michael looked at Jean once more, and he could see that his ex-lover was aroused by this. `You fucking selfish bastard! You say you love me, and yet you get aroused by this, that they are raping me, you must see my pain.` Michael thought bitterly.
The man behind him was pressing on his back, forcing him on his all fours. Jacques had stopped fucking his mouth, but only for a moment. The man behind him, spat on his hand, and forced his fingers inside, first one, then the second, and the third. He was finger fucking him at first, and then took them out. The next thing that Michael felt, was the big, slippery organ against his opening. He trusted in with force. Michael moaned, he almost felt as though he would choke.
Jacques pulled out from his mouth yet again, and pulled him roughly from his hair. Michael screamed from the agony. His mutilated body, felt like it was cutting in half. Jacques mumbled something in French, something about the English, Michael didn`t hear him well enough, nor did he care to. His whole body was trembling from pain, that was worse than anything else he had ever felt.
The men had came all over his body. Sweat, sperm and pain. He wept on the floor.
“Come here.” Ricky demanded. He sat on the couch, his trousers were open, his hand was on his hard cock. Michael groaned, he didn`t want to move.
“Anything? Remember?…Now I don`t care will you crawl here, or will you walk, but I demand that you`ll come to me this instant.” Ricky told him. Michael breathed in deeply, and forced himself to move, until he was on his knees in front of him. “Now, suck my cock, like the good whore you are.” Ricky sneered, and Michael obeyed. It was no use to fight anymore.
After Ricky, it was Joe who took him, forced his legs open and thrust inside. He hardly heard himself screaming anymore. He fled inside his own security place, inside his mind. He thought about his home in England, he thought about Ireland, the Atlantic Ocean hitting against the rocks…What it had felt like to be a child…horses, the green heaths, the sound of hoofs hitting on the ground, how it felt having the wind blowing against your face, the feel of the ocean watter on naked skin…How it had felt like being a child.
All the men had used him, and he laid on the cold floor, all curled up, not able to move. Everything was hazy somehow. An old Spanish lullaby, that his grandmother had sang to him when he had been a little, played in his head. He missed her so much, she had loved him, knew him through and through. “You remind me so, you remind me from the young girl that I once was, just as stubborn, just as wild…Your grandfather was always so strong, he always protected me from everything.” He could hear her voice saying from inside his memory`s. `Give up, sleep, give up.` The voice in his head told him. `No, I won`t give up, I can take this, I can…won`t give up.`
It was so dim, so cold, and he was in pain. Michael nipped his bruised bottom lip slightly, trying to distract himself from the worse pain. `Am I alone here?` He wondered and listened carefully. No, he could still hear their voices. He opened his eyes and saw the shadows move past him. He wanted to move, but couldn`t stand up, his body refused to listen the orders, it just hurt so bad. His sense of time, had dimmed, all his senses were concentrated around the feelings of cold, pain, and weariness. Someone knelled by his side, and turned him to lie on his back.
“Open your eyes.` Ricky`s voice demanded, holding his chin. Michael opened his tired eyes and looked at the man knelled by his side. “The night isn`t over yet.”
Sam laid on the couch, and listened to the peaceful, Irish music cd. The memories brought tears to his eyes.
They laid together on bed, kissing. Michael was under him, his soft hands caressed his back gently. His fingers moved down his neck, down the spine. Sam moaned, and pressed himself tighter against his lover. They pulled away from the kiss, and Sam lifted his head up so that he could look at his lovers face. Michael smiled. “I could kiss you always, be like this always.” He whispered, and lifted his hand up to Sam`s face. Sam turned his head and kissed his palm.
“Me too.” He whispered.
”Mo ghrá thú” Michael said then and lifted his head up to kiss his lips again. “Pardon?” Sam asked with a smile, raising one eyebrow.
“I love you, I said it in Irish.” He told him.
“You amaze me constantly, you can speak Irish too?”
“Only few words or phrases, I learned the things that seemed most important to learn, like that one.” Michael grinned. “I sometimes forgot that you are part of Irish too, you look so…hm…more like a latino, but then again, you`re not hairy, and I thought that latinos usually are?” Sam was wondering, making Michael laugh.
“Well I don`t know Sam, haven`t really looked into it.” He grinned.
“You`re a weird mix, did you know that?” Sam smiled.
“A weird mix? Weird?” Michael wondered, rolling his eyes, as though he would be hurt by this. “Just listen to me Samuel, if I were you, I would think my words more careful, because the chances are…” Michael rolled them both by their sides, and moved Sam`s hand away from his body. He grinned. “…That you`ll be very bitterly sorry about it.”
“Did I say weird? I meant my beautiful, wonderful, Spanish, Irish, English mix.” Sam pressed him gently on his back again, and returned on top of him. He kissed him. “Made from the absolutely best ingredients” He whispered and rose up a little, supporting himself with his hands.
“oh, ingredients? What am I? Some kind of food?” Michael asked laughing, and Sam leaned down again to kiss him.
“Yes, you`re mine dessert, in which taste I`ll never get bored of.” Sam kissed his face, still with want. “How can you taste so good my love? How come you`re so beautiful?” The kisses continued down on his smooth upper body.
“Oh god Sam…No one has ever…mmm…Feels good, don`t stop, I love you…”
Sam tried to pull himself away from these memories, and went into the kitchen to boil some tea. Evelyn joined his company.
“I`ll have to go and take care of somethings today. Perhaps it would be good for you and Henry to go out, get something else to think about? You could go to the Eiffel-tower, shopping, or to see the paintings in Louvre?” Sam suggested. A sad smile rose to Evelyn`s lips, she sat in front of the table.
“I have seen the Eiffel tower once, with my son, when he was a child. We were visiting one of my friend here, and Henry didn`t care to join us. Henry has some weird thing towards everything that is too French for his liking.” She said, shaking her head slightly. There was still sadness in her face and in her voice. Sam turned to look at her, and cave her the tea cup. He sat down opposite from her. “Michael was so excited, I can still remember how his eyes sparked, we spend almost the whole day together, just walking through the city, going in places that he wanted to see…Children grew up too fast.” Evelyn continued, looking out from the window.
“Michael told me about that day once, it meant a lot to him.” Sam said.
Evelyn turned her eyes to meet with his. She looked at his face closely.
“I can see what my son sees in you, you have such a friendly, and beautiful eyes. Eyes do tell a lot, you`re a good person.” Evelyn smiled and took his hand in hers. “I hope to see you two together soon.” She said, and then her eyes filled with tears. “Oh God, how blind can one be…I want my son back…I`m so sorry about these tears, these past years, seems that I have done nothing but cried all the time. I`m so sorry.” Evelyn tried to wipe the tears away, Sam squeezed her hand soothingly. “There is nothing to be sorry about. In this situation, no one can blame that we cry, I have done it myself a lot too in these past few days…We will see him again, I know it in my heart.” Sam said. He was always stronger, when helping others. If he would have been alone, he would probably have lied in bed still, not able to get anything done.
“Thank you Sam.” Evelyn said and rose up. She still wiped some tears away. “I`ll go now, to wake my husband, maybe I can convince him to go out with me. The fresh air would do us both some good.”
“If you can call the air in Paris fresh” Sam smiled weakly and continued. ”But yes, I think it would do you some good.” He then rose up too. He went to shower, changed his clothes, and left outside.
After he came from the police station, he met with Erick.
“How are you holding up? Has there been any news from him?” Erick asked, while they were walking towards the familiar coffee house, down the block.
“Well, I`m holding up, somehow…One agonizing minute at the time…They don`t have much clues yet, some woman had seen Michael, just minutes before he reached that alley, but that`s all…I told them about Ricky though, and they promised to search some information about him…Oh, and did I tell you that Michael`s parents came to my place yesterday?” Sam asked and looked at his surprised face.
“His parents? Really? How are you getting along, how are they like?” Erick asked.
“Well, I have been talking a lot with Evelyn, she is an amazing woman, reminds me so much about Michael…As for his father…hm…well, he seems like a serious man, pretty much like what Michael described him to be, he hasn`t spoken with me much. I think he might be a little unease staying in a home of his sons lover.” Sam laughed dryly.
Once they reached the coffee house, they saw a familiar figure sitting by the window table, with his friends. Sam felt the rage boiling inside him. He walked over to them.
“Patrick!” He yelled, once he had gotten close. The man lifted his gaze up to him, an arrogant smile played on his lips.
“Ah, Sam…Where`s the fire?” He asked, the smile never leaving his face.
“Where`s the fire?! You know damn well what this is about, where are they??” Sam shouted, the other people in the cafe, had turned their curious eyes to them.
“I`m sorry, but I can`t understand what you`re on about Samuel, you`re just making a fool out of yourself, by shouting like this.” Patrick sneered, his tone of voice annoying Sam even more.
“You know where Jean is, you know what he has done with Michael, where has he taken him?” Sam spat through his teeth`s. “I`m not the keeper of Jean, and I have absolutely no idea where that slut of yours is…If Michael has indeed got lost from you, did it ever occur to you, that the money hungry whore could have found another, who is even richer than you? That wouldn`t be too new, after all.” Patrick said, looking at his own friends sneering faces.
“You will not talk of him like this! You know the truth, I can see it in you!” Sam felt how his whole body was shaking from the fury, that he felt towards the man who had hurt his lover so badly, and now he sat there, with that god damn grin on his face, knowing that he had gotten away with what he had done.
“I couldn`t care less where Michael is. That British whore was a good fuck, yes, but nothing else. Being the nice man that I am, I can give you a great advice Sam; forget about that slut, and move on to another…That is what Jean is doing.” Patrick said, looking at him and then again to his friends, who were laughing quietly.
Sam couldn`t hold back his fury no longer. He took a hold of Patrick`s shirt collar, lifted him up, and looked at him with warning eyes.
“I swear to you, that I`ll kill you if…” Sam started, squeezing his hand into a fist, his intention was to hit that bastard and hit him hard. Erick walked behind him, and pulled him of off him. The owner of the cafeteria was about to come to them.
“He`s not worth it Sam, lets go.” He said, and looked at Patrick with an evil eye.
Sam let Erick lead him back outside, while a big part of him wanted nothing more than to charge back over there, and beat the shit out of Patrick. God knew that he would deserve it.
“He will get whats coming to him, sooner or later, just believe me. They will all get their sentences of the bad things that they have done.” Erick told him.
“I really do hope so, but…World is anything, but fair. Good peoples suffer, while the evil dances over their suffering, it has always been so.” Sam said with a voice filled with bitterness.
Michael woke from the bedroom, his hands were locked up again. He knew that he had passed out at some point, but didn`t know how long ago that was. His whole body was flickering with pain. He didn`t remember how many times it had happened anymore, they might have raped him, even after he had lost his consciousness. `How long will they keep me alive? Perhaps I`ll die to this pain.` He thought and squeezed his eyes close. He remembered how they had forced him to lie over the table, on his stomach. Dan had hold him down, and Ricky had walked in front of him and shown him the knife. Then he had walked behind him, and when he had felt the knife on his lower back, he had thought, really thought, that Ricky would tease him for awhile and then kill him with it, but he hadn`t. Ricky had engraved his own initials on his lower back. “I marked my own.” Ricky had told him, and he had felt the blood dripping down off the newly made wound. Michael had whimpered from the pain. Everything that had happened after, were very hazy and dream like in his head. Small pieces there and there, and the pain. The pain had been and it was still, something that drowned everything else under it.
He didn`t even notice the door opening at first, someone came in. Only when the person was beside the bed, he noticed. Jean was opening the handcuffs, releasing his hands. Michael looked at him in confusion, and pulled his hands close to his chest, thankful of the relieved feeling of his freed hands.
“You must be very quiet now, understand?” Jean whispered. Michael nodded his head. ”You have to get up, put these on.” Jean said and placed his clothes on the bed. Michael tried to move, he gasped, he was shocked of how weak he felt, even a small movement hurt. He looked at Jean with watering eyes.
“I can`t, it hurts.” His voice didn`t sound like his own.
“You must, you must try. You wouldn`t survive it, if they would do it again to you.” Jean said. After that horrible thought, that they might do it again, Michael found some strength to move. He turned over to his side, he wouldn`t dare to sit up, it would probably hurt like hell. Jean helped him up to his feet`s. Jean was supporting him, and helping him to dress the clothes on. He nipped his bottom lip from pain, trying to endure it. Michael had to lean over to Jean, to take more of his support, trying to collect some strength to run, despite the pain.
“I`m sorry about last night, I had to, or they would have suspected something.” Jean whispered. Michael closed his eyes, and held back the urge to shove him away from him, he wanted to scream his mind clear from the agony that he felt. `You could have told them that you were too drunk.` He thought bitterly.
“I understand.” He forced himself to say, his voice still sounded so strange.
It felt good to have his clothes back on, it felt so save. He followed Jean, letting him hold his hand.
“We must be very quiet now.” Jean whispered. Michael`s heart was beading up fast from the fear and also from the anticipation, now that freedom was a chance. They walked through the dark house, as quietly as they could. They could see the front door now, Jean had a nervous expression on his face. They stopped every once and awhile, and listened to the quietness of the house. Just as Jean was opening the door to outside, they heard steps coming from upstairs.
“Jean, what the fuck?!” Ricky`s voice shouted with anger. Jean pushed the door open and let Michael before him.
“Now run!” Jean shouted to him and Michael felt his tired body obey. He really didn`t know where the strength had come from. Jean ran beside him, and soon enough Ricky was behind them too. Michael didn`t know where to run, he could feel the cold air on his limbs, it was late, it was dark. He ran towards the forest that could offer some hiding places.
“Jean stop, or I`ll swear I`ll shoot you both!” Ricky shouted behind them. Michael ran, he heard the first gun shot, it hadn`t hit him, or Jean, which he noticed when he had looked at the man running beside him. They had just reached the forest, a second gun shot, pain, burning feeling on his left side, he had still been able to move, deeper into the forest. The burning pain kept growing and it made him fell down onto the cold, wet ground. It was hazy, he tried to crawl forward. Jean lifted him up, said something that he didn`t understand, and brought him behind a big rock.
“Michael…” Jean`s voice was trembling, he held his body close, and felt the warm, sticky fluid, under his hand. He lifted his shaking hand up and looked at it horrified. He looked down, only to see what was already clear, the white shirt, was covered with blood, on the left side of Michael`s back. “Oh God, Michael…stay awake, don`t you dare die on me now.” Jean`s voice was filled with panic. Michael tried to look up to see his face, but he couldn`t see so clear. Only moaning came out, when he tried to speak. “Just a little farther away, you`ll make it…you will…I can`t see…I can`t see him anywhere.” They rose up, Jean was supporting him. Everything was like in a dream, in a nightmare. They reached the highway, he saw a car waiting. Jean helped him inside the backseat and followed him in. He kept his head on his lap, pressing something against the wound. The car started.
“Drive to the hospital, now!” Jean ordered the driver.
“Jean, what the hell happened? Is he?…” The voice was Patrick`s, Michael couldn`t see him, but he knew that it was him. “Ricky shoot him.” Jean`s voice hadn`t calmed down, his other hand was stroking his hair.
“Oh God how much blood there is, I`ll never be able to wash it away from the seats.” Patrick said. Michael hated him, it would only serve him right, having his blood all over his precious car.
”God dammit Patrick, drive faster, he`s dying!” Jean shouted. The words seemed so strange to his ear. `I`m dying?` The words echoed in his mind, as his consciousness started to fail, moment, by moment.
He heard humming in his ears, a familiar voice somewhere near him. “Don`t fear niño, the night will past soon.” The soft Spanish voice spoke, and he could see her face so close, her tender smile. “Abuela…” He whispered. “Have you ever seen so many stars?” She smiled, her smile had always made you feel so special, so welcomed. “Abuella, I miss you…” He whispered, and he could feel her touch on his face. “Do not fear niño, new day will rise soon.” Soon she disappeared from his vision. “Come back, don`t leave me…” He mumbled, when coming back to the reality and pain.
“He`s being delirious.” Patrick said, looking at the rear-view-mirror. Jean just looked at Michael with worry, and stroked his hair as gently as he could. The quilt was weighting on him. He had caused this, and he could never live with himself if Michael would die, the only person that his messed up heart had ever loved. He despised himself, the man that he had become, and he knew, that if he would drink, he could do it all over again. The bitterness inside him would take him over, sooner or later it would have him completely.
The car stopped.
“Help! My friend has been shot at!” He heard Jean shouting, but everything was so hazy and broken. People came to them, they lifted him up onto a litter. Talking, shouting, questions. No, he couldn`t understand any of it. His eyelids became heavy, he returned to the familiar surroundings of his childhood and heard the familiar voices. He saw Tony, his best friend, who his heart had never stopped loving or missing. In this weird dream, they were children again, it was summer, they were running and laughing on the coast of Ireland. Happy and lost moments, when everything had been more simple, when the little things had brought a smile on your face, when months had felt so much longer than what they felt now. Childhood; the time when you couldn`t wait to grow up, and the time you come to miss in the future.
It was an early October morning, when Sam had received the call. They had all still been sleeping, and it was the first time in these passed days that Sam had been able to sleep for a couple of hours. Still sleepy, he was awoken by the phone’s insistent ringing, he had a hard time at first, understanding what was being said to him from the other end of the line.
“…We had a message from one of the hospitals, a young man, who fits the description of your friend, has been brought in. This young man has a gun shot wound, he’s being treated in the intensive care unit. If you could come and identity him?” The officer spoke calmly. Sam felt his heart almost stop, it felt hard to breath. The man’s words echoed in his mind, still somehow unreal. ’Hospital?…gun shot wound?…identify?’ “Mr. Grey?” The man asked once he had been quiet for awhile.
“I`m sorry, I… Um…What?” He was finally able to say.
”You need to come to the hospital, to make the identification. Do you have a paper and a pen? I’ll give you the address. We’ll wait for you in the lobby.” Sam was feeling nervous; his hands were shaking as he wrote the address down. When he finished the call, he had to stop thinking for a while. ‘Michael could be found’, he felt relieved. But the relief was gone as quickly as it came. ‘He had been shot, he was in a hospital, in the intensive care, and he might be…dying?’ Sam felt the pain in his heart, and in his chest… ‘And perhaps, it wouldn’t be Michael? Maybe it would be someone else?…… Maybe…’
“Who was it?” Evelyn asked behind him, Sam turned around to face her. She looked worried, she was waiting and she seemed scared somehow.
“They called from the hospital, they might have found him.” Sam said with a weak voice. Evelyn stood in front of him, surprised expression on her face. She was opening her mouth to say something, but the words got lost from her.
“The hospital?” She was finally able to ask.
”Yes, they said that he has a gun shot wound, he’s in intensive care…Assuming that it is him.” Sam said. The words just slipped out from his mouth, as his mind tried to deal with the confused feelings tied to them. He shook his head slightly and raised his hand onto his temple. “I…better just go there straight away.” He said then and searched for his car keys. He was still in slight shock. `Breath, easy…just calm yourself. I must calm down, if I’m going to drive there.` Sam kept telling himself.
“We’ll come with you.” Evelyn said. Sam nodded his head; realizing then that he had almost gone out with only his boxers and a t-shirt on. He came to the living room couch, where the clothes that he wore yesterday laid.
Evelyn woke up her husband, it really was amazing how the man could sleep so heavily. Evelyn was quite sure that Henry wouldn’t even wake up if there was a sound of fire alarm going on.
“Henry, wake up!” She said, while shaking his arm. He opened his tired eyes finally.
“Get dressed quickly, we need to leave now!” Evelyn screamed and got up quickly, to change her clothes.
“Um…What?…Go where?” He asked, still very sleepy, it was 6am for God’s sake. He rose up to sit, and yawned deeply. “Henry! I said quickly! They called from the hospital, they might have found Michael!” Evelyn’s tone of voice was shrill, like when ever she was nervous. Henry suddenly didn’t feel tired at all anymore. He got up, took his clothes, and put them on quickly. He wasn’t sure what to think, except, they were in a hurry. Although he doubted that the hospital would disappear to anywhere, even if they would leave without such a rush. Sam was waiting for them in the hall, when they came out of the room. No one said a word, as they left. The silence ensued, when they sat in the car, or even through out the drive to the hospital.
The doctor leaded them to the hospital door, while the officer followed them.
“He’s still unconscious.” The woman doctor explained while opening the door.
“It is best that only one of you goes in to see if it is him.” She added with a gentle voice. Sam looked to Michael’s parents behind him.
“It’s alright Sam, you can go.” Evelyn said, as she noticed his questioning expression. Sam walked inside the room, followed by the male officer. He looked at the hospital bed, walking slowly towards it. He had known from the door that it was him. As he came closer to his unconscious lover, he felt the tears rising to his eyes. It felt hard to breath. All those hospital apparatus around him…He was standing right near the bed now.
The lump in his throat seemed to grow, he couldn’t turn his eyes away from him. He heard the peeping sound of the machine, measuring his heart beats. He saw the marks on his lover’s neck, for someone had bitten his neck all over. `How far down do they go?` Sam wondered, squeezing his hands into a fists, from the hatred that he felt towards whoever had done this to him. It was beginning to be clear what they had done to him, the thing he had feared that they would do. He however still hoped that it wouldn’t be so. His face looked so peaceful however, still as beautiful as ever before. He lifted his hand up to touch his face gently, wanting to feel that he indeed was real. His skin felt so warm.
“How come you’re still so beautiful my love?…” He whispered, looking at his face with wonderment.
The anguish spread even deeper in him. It was beginning to be harder, and harder to breath. His eyes were darkening, he felt dizzy. He had to take support from the bed.
“Mr. Grey, are you alright?” The man behind him asked and came to him.
“I…well I…” Sam tried, he didn’t know what it was that he had wanted to say. The man led him out of the room, and guided him to sit on the chair in the corridor. Sam leaned forward, and buried his face into his hands.
“Sam, are you alright?” Evelyn asked, and sat beside him. Sam nodded his head. “Was it him?” She asked then.
“Yes.” His voice quietly answered. Sam lifted his head up, and looked at the doctor, who looked back at him, a bit worried. “Will he survive? How did he come here?” Sam asked.
“What if we would go somewhere more privately to talk?” The woman suggested and they followed her into a small waiting room.
She sat onto the chair, and motioned for them to do the same. The officer had come with them.
“Two men, brought him here last night, but unfortunately, in all that fuss, these man had time to leave, before we had the time to ask them some questions.” She explained. Sam felt angry.
“How the fuck is that possible?!, you let them go?!” Sam shouted. Evelyn placed her hand over his shoulder.
“Calm down Mr. Grey, we will do our best to track these men down.” The officer said, as Sam was at glaring him, with suspicion. He tried to calm down. `Damn French, they can’t do anything right. ` He thought, furrowing his brow. Well at least these two speak English, which was some kind of a miracle in this country. Sam reminded himself.
“Will he survive? Will my son live?” Evelyn asked with weak, worried voice.
“We were able remove the bullet, but he did loose a lot of blood, and there were other severe bruises on his body as well…His condition is not that good at the moment, we can’t deny that, but there is however, a great possibility for him to heal perfectly, as far as his physical wounds go. This all depends greatly on himself, the next 24 hours are critical.”- The woman told them, struggling a little with her English ‘A great chance for him to heal perfectly, at least physically that is, but,…What about the mentally?’ Sam wondered.
“I need to know this…What exactly have they done to my son?” Evelyn asked, slightly scared of what the answer would be, but she really did need to know.
The woman looked at them, wondering what to tell, or how to say it. It just seemed that there was no right way to tell something like this to the victim’s family, she wondered would there ever be such way. She took a deep breath.
“There was clear evidence of sexual violence, and rape.” Sam felt ill, he felt pain inside, and he felt rage. Sure he had wondered about this, but now that someone said it out loud, it made it real. He remembered the marks on his lover’s neck. He looked at Evelyn, who was in complete shock, her face had paled, eyes glimmering from tears, holding her hand over her mouth. Henry looked mad as hell, his hands were squeezed into a fist, there was pure anger in his eyes, and he had no one to take that anger out on.
“Do not worry, we will find the men who did this, and they will be sentenced. We have good enough prove, DNA-samples and such.” The officer said meeting with the eyes of Evelyn Wills. He tried to smile soothingly to the shocked mother.
“Can we see him now?” Evelyn asked, once she had calmed down just a bit.
“Of course”, said the doctor standing.
They walked into the hospital room. Evelyn took her husbands hand in her own, as they approached the bed. When she saw her son’s face, she felt all the six years fear, worry, and anticipation rush through her. She lost her ability to hold back her tears. She would have collapsed onto the floor, had not her husband pulled her close to his chest, and held on to his crying wife.
“Everything will be alright my love, everything will be alright.” He spoke to her soothingly, and stroked he hair. Henry looked over at his son, and felt the tears in his own eyes too. He had never before cried. ‘Men do not cry Henry!’ He reminded himself, when ever tears had made their way. The voice in his head, had always been the one of his fathers, but now it was the time to quiet that voice.
Finally Evelyn had calmed down, Henry wiped the tears away gently from her face. Evelyn turned around to face her son. She walked closer to him, and sat on the chair, that had been pulled close. She touched her son’s cheek gently, then his hair. She started slightly when she saw the marks on his neck, she lift her hand up to her mouth, and felt the tears starting to fall down on her cheeks again.
“Those Monsters!” She sighed. Henry stood behind her, and placed his hands on her shoulders. The anger inside him kept on growing. Evelyn took her son’s hand in her own, and kissed the back of his. She lifted his palm up to her cheek. “You must wake up sweetheart; you must, now that we have finally found you.”
Sam had stood a little farther away, not able to move, until now. He walked over to the other side of the bed. Evelyn lifted her gaze up to him, and smiled weakly through her tears. She still stroked her son’s hand, only now looking closely at it. She saw that the skin around his wrist was slightly red and chaffed. They all saw it, and saw that his other hand was the same. Sam couldn’t even imagine the amount of pain that his lover had gone through, and he knew that Michael had tried to fight against them with all his strength.
Evelyn stayed alone with her son, when her husband and Sam and went to get some tea from the cafeteria. She still held on to his hand, and stroked his hair with her other. So many memories rushed through her mind. She saw the young man on the hospital bed, as her own little son, who she had not been able to protect from the evil. She could hear the child’s voice in her mind; she remembered it all so clearly. She remembered how it had felt like, to hold her new born baby in her arms at the maternity hospital; it felt like it hadn’t even been that long ago.
“My sweet, innocent son, forgive me for all that I said to you, when you told me. Forgive that I was so stupid back then.” She whispered, and pressed a soft kiss on his forehead. “I don’t want to lose you again.”
Those six years, had been painful and full of sorrow. When she had read the letter, that her son had left to them, as his goodbye, almost exactly six years ago, it had broken her heart. She had been worried sick, and she had cried the whole day and night. Then he had called her. They had only spoke few words, and she remembered his hasty voice, when he had told her, that he would call her back soon.
And Evelyn had waited, but nothing had been heard from him, and they hadn’t been able to track the number down. In her heart she had known, that her son was in trouble and in pain, and she could do nothing to help him. The nightmares that she had had, where horrible and they had always seemed so real, too real. The days, weeks and moths had passed, and there had been no news of their son. She had always waited and hoped for his return. Some people had tried to tell her, that it was likely that he was dead. She had refused to believe them. She had known, that he was alive… somewhere.
The Christmases and his birthdays had been the most difficult times to go through. She had had her problems with Henry. There had been a time when she had blamed herself, and a time that she had blamed Henry, and a time that she had blamed them both. But Henry had never given up on her, not when she had been like a ghost in her own home, not when she had been cruel with words to him, nor had he given up on her, when she had been just a fragile creature, crying inside their bedroom all day long.
Those years had made her see how much Henry loved her. Coming through those hard years, had only made their love stronger. Henry had changed, and she had changed, but they had changed together, to understand and respect each other even more. They had learned to talk, and love in a way that she had never known existed. And all this time they had mourned, the important part had still been missing, their child, that they both loved with all their hearts, and they feared that he would never know that. They feared Michael would die, believing that they did not love him, and that they despised him.
“I love you…Can you hear me? Your mother loves you.” She whispered.
“Mommy, please don’t cry.” The boy asked, and climbed to the arms of his mother. He looked at her mourning face, with worry. She smiled through her tears, and pressed a gentle kiss on his forehead.
“Do not fear my sweetheart, mom is okay soon, I’m just sad and that is why I’m crying. Sometimes tears help when you’re feeling sad.” She whispered.
“You are crying because Angelia died?”
“Yes.” The boy lifted his hand up to his mothers face, and wiped the tears away gently.
“Angelia, is whit angels now, right?” He asked and looked at her face, thoughtfully.
“Yes sweetheart, she is with them.”
“Is Angelia an angel now? Do babies grow up in heaven, or will she always stay as a baby?” He asked then.
“I do not know sweetheart, she waits for us. When we get there, then we will see.” She placed a kiss on his head. The boy was quiet for a moment and played with his small fingers in her long hair.
“I hope that she has play mates up there.” He said thoughtfully. She smiled at him; she was feeling much better now. “I’m sure she does.”
She remembered the conversation that she had, with her own mother, when Michael had told them the truth about himself, and went to live with her.
“What does it matter if Michael likes other men? He’s still your son, exactly the same person that he has always been.” Isabella had looked at her firmly, and asked.
“It’s just not right. God didn’t intend it to be so, and Michael will come back to his senses.” She had told her mother, lifting her head up proudly, sure that she had been right.
“God this, and God that! I’m so sick and tired of all that hypocrisy. I’m sure that God has much better things to do then, guard our love lives.” Her mother had said to her, and looked at her impatiently, before she had continued.
“Evelyn, open your eyes it really doesn’t matter. What matters is love!”
“But it does matter! It does, he should find some nice, decent girl, marry her, and have children. That is normal and This is not!” She had insisted.
“I thought I raised you better than that, I didn’t think that you would be this prejudice…Really Eve, is it not the most important thing, for him to be happy?”
“Of course I want him to be happy, but this is not the way to make him happy…People will talk and…” At this point Isabella had sighted deeply.
“Is this what you worry about? What other peoples think? What does it matter what everyone else thinks, this world is crowded with idiots that think there is only one way for peoples to live their lives. We live only once, and what does it do, to constantly worry about how you can live your life the way, that they want you to live! It’s his life, not yours. Do not close your son out, he needs you now more than ever, he needs for you to accept him.” Evelyn had noticed her distress, something had weighted on her; worry. She was dying, and she had been worried about Michael. Perhaps she had seen something that they hadn’t? But Evelyn had been too stubborn to listen carefully then.
Sam knew he looked dreadful. He hadn’t slept in three days, or nights. He had hardly eaten anything. He just waited; spend the agonizing hours in the corridors of the hospital, in the waiting room, or by the bed. He prayed, and waited. He feared for the worse, and hoped for the best.
It was third day and Michael was still unconscious, still not moving. Sam sat at his bed side, and stared at his chest; that kept rising and falling, as his lungs breathed in the oxygen. His gaze strayed only for a moments to the machine, that tracked his heart beat. They were the only sign he was still living. Sam leaned forward and laid his head on his chest.
“Come back, please come back, I need you.” Sam stayed like this for several minutes, listening to his heart beat, eyes close. He lifted his head up to look at his face; frustrated with the in-expressiveness it depicted, frustrated that the beautiful eyes that he had been missing; stayed closed.
“I’m loosing my mind here, you need to wake up and save me from this, save us all from this…Michael…love…please.” Sam tried. He leaned to kiss his forehead, and pressed a light kiss on his pale lips. “Michael…I need you.” He stroked his arm, which lay close to his body, unmoving. “I’ll never forgive you if you die, and leave me here. Understand?” Sam whispered, but regretted his words as soon as they were spoken. “No, forgive me. I would never forgive them, I’ll hate them always…I would never love another, I couldn’t, I would die with you.” Sam said, and pressed his head against his arms. The fingers of Michael’s left hand moved a bit, it was the first movement in all this time. Sam looked at his hand feeling ecstatic. “Michael, you hear me, right?!” He tried, holding his breath. He looked at the hand, and there was yet another slight movement. Had Sam looked at his face, he could have seen his lovers head turning slightly, and his eyelids moving, but he had not looked. Sam looked at his face now, but his eyes were obstinately closed still, and the expression had not changed. “Michael?” Sam tried again, but there was no answer. Sam however felt some kind of relieve, somewhere in side his subconscious, inside his deep dream that he was having, Michael could hear his voice, and was trying to come back. Sam knew that he was. At that moment the nurse walked in.
Sam raised his gaze up to the young woman approaching. She smiled to him gently.
“You need to leave for a moment, I came in here to change his drop Pac, and see how the patient is doing.” The woman explained in French. Sam nodded.
“He just moved his hand; does that mean that he’s waking up?” Sam asked, when getting up. The woman looked at the patient lying on the bed.
“It’s a possibility, yes, his vital functions have remained stable, and the worst is over. I can’t promise anything for sure, though, there is always the possibility that something could go wrong.” Sam nodded again and left the room. He came into the waiting area, where Michael’s parents where.
Evelyn’s eyes were red from tears; she laid her head on her husband’s shoulders. The words that the doctor had told them three day’s ago, where repeated over, and over in her head. ‘They raped my son. Rape.’ She was only now beginning to realize just what it meant, and how horrible it was. She felt angry towards the police and the doctors, even though it wasn’t their fault. She was mad at the world and she was mad at God. How could God let something like this happen? How could God allow her son to be hurt so? Michael was innocent, he had never hurt anyone, why him? Why their family? She felt her husband’s hand stroking her hair gently. He pressed a gentle kiss on her forehead. ‘Why should I believe in you God, when you have given me so much suffering? You took away my little girl already, wasn’t that enough? You had to put my son through this? Haven’t I always lived by your word, what did I do, that was so wrong to deserve this punishment?’ She questioned in her head, and made her mind up, that if Michael would die, she would loose her fate all together.
She looked at Sam who sat beside her. He looked so tired, they all were, but it broke her heart to see the young man in so much inner pain. She smiled just a little. Sam loved her son, he really did. There was still love in this dark world.
“Sam, I think you need to get some sleep. You should go home and try to sleep, I’ll stay here with Henry, and we call you as soon as there is some change in his condition.” Evelyn said, lifting her head up to look at him. Sam stared into the emptiness. “He moved his hand; I want to be here when he wake’s up.” He said. Evelyn took his hand in hers.
”Then wouldn’t it be better to feel fresh when he wake’s up? I promise that I’ll call you if he does.” She said, with warm motherly like voice.
“I guess you’re right. I’ll call Kitty, she can pick me up, as I’m in no condition to drive myself.
Henry sat by his son’s bed side, when his wife had gone off to speak with the nurses. He looked at his unconscious, sleeping form, thoughtfully. He was a shamed of himself, when remembering how he had acted like, when finding out that Michael was gay. It had just been such a big shock for him back then. The words he had used? He quivered, when remembering. He used to think that all gays were pathetic excuses for men. The kind of men, whom dressed themselves up, in a girl like manner, and were afraid of hard work, of getting themselves dirty. Michael had never shown any such signs. He had been in a football team; he had never shown any interest in playing with girls toys, something that Henry had thought that all gays would like to do when they were children. Michael had always made him proud. His son was smart, athletic, and very handsome. Henry remembered how Michael had been very careful of the way he looked, when going somewhere in his teen-age. Henry had thought that, it was normal and acceptable. Gentlemen’s always take care of their appearance.
“Dad, dad! We won! We won the game!” The boy shouted, when running into the kitchen. His face and his clothes were muddy, His knees scratched, and had dried blood in them but, on his lips, was a bright smile and his eyes were sparkling. The father could not help but to smile to him.
“Oh, you did now, did you? Who were you playing against?” He asked.
“Gregory’s brothers and their friends.” The boy told him with pride in his voice. “We won even though we are younger than they, and I made the determining, goal! It was so bloody brilliant!”
“Sure sounds that way. I’m really proud of you.” Henry said, rose up, and ruffled his son’s hair.
“Michael! You have left all these muddy traces in here!” Evelyn screamed, and followed the traces into to the kitchen. She looked at her son, who stood by his father, looking at the mess that he had made.
“And just look at yourself! There’s dirt all over you. Oh my dear boy, when will you learn?” She was shaking her head. The boy looked at her, a little shyly, and nipped his bottom lip, looking then at himself more closely.
“Eve, do not be so hard on the poor boy, he won a game, and I think that calls for a celebration! What if we would go out for dinner, the whole family?” Henry suggested.
“Yeah, lets!” The boy cried out happily. Evelyn looked at her husband and her son, trying hard to be firm, but those cute faces melted her heart.
“Alright then, you young man, go wash yourself clean and change your clothes. I will wash up the mess you have made here. Next time do nut rush inside with muddy shoes.” She said.
“Of course mother! I’m sorry about the mess! Can Tony come with us?” He asked.
“If it’s alright with his parents.”
“I call him and ask!” He shouted and started running up the stairs.
”Michael for God’s sake, take your shoes off!” Evelyn cried out.
Henry smiled as the memories returned. He wished to be given a chance to make it all alright again, that he could have said or done everything differently when finding out the truth. There was no chance of such to be had, but the future would give another kind of chance but, only if Michael survived. It was indeed the cruelest thing to go through; to see your own child suffering in front of you, fighting for life, and you being unable to help in any way. You wouldn’t wish that fate to anyone. Henry leaned his head against his arms. Michael just couldn’t die. Not now, when there was still so much to left to say. Henry rose up, and walked over by the window, it had begun to rain outside.
Michael moved slightly, and opened his eyes carefully; it was so bright inside the room. He blinked his eyes a bit, trying to get used to the light. ‘Where am I?’ He wondered, and looked around himself; there were some machines around him, weird looking things. He tried to move his hands a bit, just to make sure, that there would be nothing holding him. He still didn’t quite understand where he was, or if he was really alive. He turned his head, and saw a man standing in front of the window, looking at the view, his back turned against him. Michael startled slightly for fear of this stranger but, then he looked at the figure more carefully. He was somehow very familiar. ‘This has to be a dream…it can’t be him, or can it?’ Michael wondered with confusion.
“Dad?” He asked with a weak voice, before thinking it any longer. The man turned around, and stepped closer to him, with a surprised expression on his face.
“Michael! You have wakened! I…” Henry wasn’t sure what to say. Michael looked at his father, now even more confused. It was him, but how? He certainly hadn’t expected to see him, and there he was, looking at him, both of them at a loss, for the proper words. His father had aged more than he would have thought; his hair was almost completely grey now. His face seemed somehow softened, there was no despise in his eyes, like the last time they had seen each other.
Henry noticed his son’s confusion.
“Where am I?” Michael asked looking at the room once more.
“You’re in a hospital. How are you feeling?” Henry asked with worry.
“Um…it hurts, everywhere.” His voice was hoarse.
“Wait I’ll go and get someone.” Henry said, and left the room.
Soon, a middle-aged woman doctor came into the room. Michael looked at her, when she approached.
“Your father told me that you have awakened. How are you feeling?” She asked and gave her most gentle smile to him. Michael still had a hard time understanding all that was happening, and concentrating into anything.
“I’m tired, and it hurts.” He was finally able to answer. The woman still kept smiling to him. She took a little flashlight, and checked his eyes with it. Michael did not understand the meaning of why she did so.
“I’ll give you some pain medicine.” She said next. Michael looked away, when she took the sprayed, and pressed the needle in his arm. “I’ll come to check up on you, in few hours. If you need anything, just press this button, and someone will come.” She explained, and showed him where the button was, then left.
He hadn’t been alone very long, when his father returned to the room, behind him was his mother, still as beautiful as she had always been, and Michael couldn’t help, but to cry. He had missed her so much.
“Mom.” He said and reached his arms to her. She rushed to him, and took him in her arms. Michael held on to her tightly, they were both crying.
“Oh my dear son Michael…my dear child.” She whispered while kissing his face all over. A mother, who’s heart had been broken from the sorrow of loosing her son, was now slowly beginning to heal, and a son who had missed her through out these hard years, missed to feel her arms around him, missed her gentle voice, wanted nothing more now, than to hold on to her and never let go again. “I’m so sorry dear, forgive me…I love you…I love you so much.” She kept saying.
“Forgive me mom, I was so stupid. I love you.” Michael opened his closed eyes, and looked over her shoulder to his father. “I love you both.” He said and received the gentlest smile that he had ever seen on his father’s face.
Finally both he and his mother had calmed down enough. Michael felt tired, millions of questions were running in his mind, and he didn’t know which he should ask first.
“What day is it?”
“Friday, The 10th of October.” Michael tried to count the days back, but he didn’t remember how many days he had been in that horrible place. ‘Maybe five? It seemed longer.’ He wondered.
“How many days have I been here?”
“Three days.” His father answered. ‘Three? Have I really been unconscious for three whole days?’ He wondered. “Where’s Sam?” He asked, and looked around again and then he looked at his mother. It was because of Sam that they were here now, he knew it.
“Sam is coming here soon, he has been by your side, all these three days, and he needed some rest.” She smiled and continued. “He’s a good man, he loves you so much.” It felt weird to hear her say that, and even weirder, when his father smiled and seemed to agree with her.
Finally Sam came in, Evelyn and Henry smiled to them both and left them by themselves. Michael looked at Sam closely as he approached. He thought that Sam looked like an angel. Sam felt a huge relief when he watched his lover awake. He almost couldn’t breathe, when he looked into his eyes, and when he saw a weak smile on his pale lips. Sam smiled back at him gently. “Hey.” Michael said weakly, when he sat by his bed side.
“Hey.” Sam answered and for a moment they just looked one another, Sam touched his face, and stroked his cheek gently.
“Oh God, I missed you. It feels so good to see you awake.” Sam sighted, he would have wanted to climb in next to him and never leave his side.
“I missed you too.” Michael whispered and tried to smile again. Sam leaned closer and kissed his forehead.
“How are you feeling my love?” He asked then. Michael thought about what he should answer for a moment.
“I feel fine, considering the circumstances…I’m just so very tired, funny really, one would think that three days of sleep would be enough.” He answered and tried to laugh a little, when in truth, he was feeling rotten despite the pain killers.
“Everyone has been so worried about you, my parents were here yesterday, and they ensured that you got the best possible treatment. Kitty, Erick and Paul, have also been here.” Sam told him and then continued. ”The police have been informed that you have woken up, they want to talk with you tomorrow do you think you can do it?” He asked carefully. Michael closed his eyes for a moment.
“I think I must.” He answered then and opened his eyes.
“Good. Sleep now, you need your rest. I’ll see you when you wake up, I love you.” Sam said and kissed him as gently as he could. He noticed straight away that his lover’s body tensed from the mere kiss on the lips. He looked at Michael with worry and noticed a hint of fear in his eyes. Michael noticed his worry, he tried to smile and relax himself.
“I love you.” He whispered. Sam rose up, and walked towards the door.
“Sam.” Michael called. Sam turned to look at him. “Thank you, for getting my parents here, I need them.” He said, and received a warm, loving smile from Sam.
“I thought so my love, sleep well.”
When he was alone, the horrible memories returned to him. Everything that happened. How they had raped him. He remembered the sounds, the pain, how Ricky had held him down, how they had spread his legs and his arms open. His whole naked body on a display for them, and he had not been able to do anything, but scream, when they had taken him, called him a whore, claimed that he had enjoyed every minute of it. His breathing became fast, as these horrible mental pictures forced themselves back to his mind. The tears filled his eyes, and he wanted to scream, and he wanted to run, but he could not. He squeezed his hands into fists. He tried desperately to think of something else, but couldn’t. He feared that Jean would come for him, or Ricky. Michael shook his head at the idea. Surely he would loose his mind, should it happen once more.
Michael hadn’t even realized that he had screamed out loud. His whole body was shaking; his breathing was restless and dense. The doctor came into the room, and tried to calm him down. She spoke something, which Michael couldn’t understand. She had taken a hold of his arm and pressed the needle down on his vein.
“This will help you sleep.” The woman explained, and soon he felt his body calming down, his breathing smoothed, and he fell into a sleep.
He walked down the street towards his home. It was autumn and the tree leaves had magnificent colors on them, the air smelled like rain. The house looked empty. He opened the door, came inside and met with the silver blue darkness.
“Mom? Dad?” He called, but there was no answer. He saw something moving upstairs, the figure looked at him, and disappeared into his room. “Tony?” He asked, but still there was no answer. He walked up the stairs, the door to his room, was slightly open. The boy stood there, facing the window. He looked at the stranger with confusion.
“Who are you?” He asked finally. The boy was still for a moment, and then started to turn around slowly. Michael sighted from shock; the young, teen-aged boys face was covered with blood on the other side, and his skull was slightly broken.
“It will never stop.” The boy said, and looked straight at him, with his ghost like eyes.
“Evan?” Michael’s voice was shaking.
”He will never stop…Death is the only way to end it. I did it. It was the only way out…He would never stop. He will never stop.” The boy continued. Michael wanted to run, but his legs refused to move, and at this same time, this dead boy, covered in blood, approached him.
“I knew him, I knew him for many years. Ricky will never stop, he will have his way…He said that he would hurt my sister, if I said no. He said that father would loose his job, and my mother would do. But in the end, I won, death is the only way to run…My family was saved…Ricky is the devil, he will never stop.” The boy stopped, only few meters from him, and he could see the clear damage in his face, that in the boys living he had been beautiful.
“Death is the way, the only way.” The boy said, handing the gun in his hand closer to him, and he laughed.
Michael screamed, and awoke from his nightmare. He looked around the dark hospital room, and sighted with relieve. ‘It was only a dream, a bad dream.’ He thought, and looked out from the window, he could see the sky filled with stars, it was weird, he had never seen so many stars so near the big city. The door opened.
“Michael, you naughty boy, you ran from me again.” The voice said, and he looked at the man with horror.
“How are you here?” He asked, with shaking voice, and watched how Ricky neared the bed.
“I came to get what’s mine. Have you forgotten that you belong to me? I own you.” Ricky sneered; he was right by the bed side now. His rough hand moved under his hospital gown, stroking his naked skin. Michael shivered and tried to call for help, but no one came. “They do not care sweetheart, they all know that your mine, I have marked you.” Ricky spoke and his hand moved to his genitals. “You are my whore, always mine.” He laughed.
Michael woke up to his own screaming, this time for real. He tried to calm himself down. ‘It was only a dream, only a dream.’ He kept telling himself, and looked around the room. ‘Ricky is not here. I’m still at the hospital; everything is alright, only a dream. Relax, calm down.’ A nurse that he hadn’t seen before stepped in.
“Good morning.” She said with a smile. Michael looked at her, but did not reply. “How are you feeling today?” She asked, once getting closer.
“Fine.” Michael lied quietly.
“We’ll move you today to another section. You are doing much better now.” She smiled, and Michael smiled back to her.
They moved him at noon. It was a private room as well. Michael liked this room better; there weren’t so many machines around him now. His parents and Sam came to him, almost directly after the move. When Michael saw them, he smiled.
“How are you doing my little one?” His mother asked, and pressed a kiss on his forehead. Michael smiled a little; he thought that it was funny that she should still call him her little one.
“I’m fine.” Michael replied, somehow this answer seemed like the easiest one.
“My brave little soldier.” She smiled. “Mom, I’m not five years old anymore.” Michael reminded her, and smiled weakly. Sam and his father laughed slightly.
“Yes, but your still my own baby, even when you are 70-years old.” She said and touched his face.
“I brought your favorite chocolate and a book.” Sam said and looked at him.
“Thanks, would you put them on the table there?” Michael said and pointed at the little nightstand, close to his bed.
“The Lord of the Rings, haven’t red that one yet.” Michael said when looking at the cover of the book.
“I know that’s why I brought it. Everyone should read it at least once.” Sam smiled.
“Well, for once I have the time to read that brick stone, nothing better to do.” Michael said, he was just teasing Sam, knowing how obsessed he was with the book. Sam gave him a weird look.
“Nothing better to do? You don’t know what you have missed, that is the greatest book ever made, and it’s not just for killing time.” Sam explained. Michael couldn’t help, but to laugh at this.
“If you say so Sam, I’m sorry if I insulted your favorite book. I’m sure that it’s okay.” He said the last part with slight doubt in his voice.
“It is good!” Sam pointed out.
Silence followed. Michael tried hard to push everything that had happened away from his mind, but it seemed impossible. He succeeded in it only for small moments, but then it came back. And when he looked at his parents and Sam’s faces, he saw their worried looks, he saw that they were all wondering what they could say to him, and what could they do for him. They were feeling sorry for him, and Michael didn’t like that pity around him. He wondered how much they knew, especially how much his parents knew. He was feeling a shamed, he felt so dirty and it was almost like the word: *raped* would have been engraved on his forehead. Michael shivered slightly. He would never have wanted for his parents to find out about that.
Evelyn saw the distressed expression, on her sons face; she saw that his thoughts had wondered of to somewhere. His eyes showed the pain most clearly. She remembered her son, the way he had been at the age of 17, and she could not help but to notice, how much he had changed through these years, she saw all of this, just looking at his eyes.
”Can I talk with Michael alone?” Evelyn asked from the two men, standing behind her.
“Sure.” They both answered almost at the same time, and left the room.
“Michael, talk to me. You’re not well, I can see it…I want to know what you’re thinking.” She spoke with serious tone, and came face to face with his confused and scared expression. “You don’t have to act brave, and tell us that you’re fine, when it’s not true. We all want to help you, but you must let us do that.” She continued. Michael looked away from her, towards the window.
”I…I don’t what…” Michael struggled to say. Evelyn placed her hand on his cheek, and turned his face gently to meet hers. “Honey…I fear that you’ll close all of this that you’re feeling, inside you, and that sooner or later the pain will eat you up inside. You should talk, if not to us, then to someone else.” Michael felt the tears in his eyes, and his mother leaned to hug him. “Everything is alright, it’s alright to cry.” She comforted him with soft voice, stroking his hair.
“I don’t deserve your love.” Michael muttered in her arms, and it made her heart ache to hear him say that.
“What are you talking about dear, of course you deserve it. You deserve only the best.”
“No, it’s my entire fault, I was so stupid, self-satisfied and I deserved it.” Michael’s body was shaking against his mothers. “What ever they did to you, or made you believe, it’s not true, you never did anything to deserve it, no one deserves to go through what you have…And you’re not self-satisfied, you never were. You are a warm hearted, beautiful and wise, my own dear son. You were still a child when you left, none of this is your fault, understand? Nothing!”
Finally Michael calmed down; he laid his head back onto the pillow. Evelyn wiped the tears away from his face.
“Everything will be alright, everything will turn out for the better, even if it would look bad now, believe me.” She smiled gently. Michael was quiet for a moment.
“Do you know anything about Tony? Is he alright?” Michael asked suddenly, he really needed to know.
“Tony is fine. After you left, he came to see us very often, always asking news from you. He still visits us, when ever he can. I don’t know what exactly happened between you two all those years ago, but Tony seems to believe that your leaving was his fault. He misses you greatly.” Michael could hardly believe what he was hearing. Tony had asked about him? Felt guilty for him? Missed him?
“It wasn’t his fault.” Michael muttered, while staring at the wall.
“Maybe you could give him a call sometime, when you’re feeling better?” Evelyn suggested. Michael thought about this for a moment then Sam returned to the room.
“The police are here, you think you can talk with them now?” Sam asked from the doorway. Michael nodded his head for reply. Sam left and soon returned with one female and one male officer.
“Could you wait outside mom?” Michael asked he really didn’t want her to hear any possible details that he might have to tell them.
“Of course sweetheart.” Evelyn kissed his forehead, and left. Sam sat by his bed side.
“Sam, maybe you should…” Michael started, but Sam looked at him with confident, interrupting him.
“No, I stay here, by your side.” Michael looked at him with doubt, he wondered would it be any good for his boyfriend to hear this, but when he saw Sam’s definite expression, he let him stay. The officers sat down on the extra chairs brought in. “Would you tell us what happened? Can you name the persons, who kidnapped you? How many were there? That sort of thing.” Michael was quiet for a moment, trying to calm himself down. ‘Ricky will kill you if you tell. Somehow he will avenge this on you. You know this.’ The voice in his head tried to tell him.
Sam took his hand, and squeezed it soothingly. Michael looked at his boyfriend once more with insecure, before he started. “There were six men…” His voice started quietly. From the corner of his eye, he could see that Sam had startled after hearing this. He seemed to go pale a little.
“Can you tell us who they were?” The woman officer asked.
“Ric…Ricky Matthews, Jean Parouxe, Joe Taylor…As for the others, I did not know them from before. They called one of the men; Dan, he was a Yankee, and another Yankee man, who’s forename was Steve…and then there was a French man, called Jacques.” The male officer was writing the names down.
“You need to give us a statement of what happened, tell us what they did to you.” The man officer said. ‘Oh God.’ Michael thought horrified. He didn’t want to go through that hell all over again, and Sam would be hearing this? The woman officer noticed his distress.
“Calm down, take your time.” She said and smiled gently. Michael took a few deep breaths before he began telling the main features of what happened. He finished his telling to how Jean had saved him from the place, but that Ricky had seen them and shot at him. Jean had brought him to the car, driven by Patrick, and they had brought him into the hospital. He told them that Jean had originally planned to take him some place else, if the shooting had not happened.
“Can you describe what they looked like?” The man asked. And Michael tried to explain it the best he could, it felt so hard, he would rather forget all about them.
He looked at Sam, who seemed even paler, once he had heard all of this.
“Can you tell us where the house is situated?” Michael tried to think. He remembered that the drive there had seemed really long, but on the other hand he had been in complete panic at the time, and wasn’t sure was the drive there really that long, and on the drive to the hospital, he had been only half conscious, so…
“I only remember, that it was a big, white house surrounded by forest, I think the house belonged to this Jacques guy.” He remembered the house really dimly; he had only looked at it once, while they had been running towards the forest. The man stopped writing.
“We’ll rewrite your statement clean, and bring you the copy tomorrow for you to sign.” The man said, and both of the officers rose up.
“And do try not to worry, we will get these men, and they will be behind pars for many years.” The woman said and smiled to him. Michael smiled back to them a little insecurely. Then they left.
Michael hardly dared to look at Sam, who sat silently by his bed side, looking both mad and shocked at the same time. ‘Six men?! Six? Touching him, hurting him… They all deserve to die; they all deserve a fucking painful death!’ Sam thought darkly.
“Sam?…” Michael asked carefully, not getting any answer. ”Sam?” He tried again, this time getting him to wake from his thoughts. Sam looked at him, and Michael could see that he was thinking about all that had been done to him, and it brought pain in his eyes. ‘Sam hates me…He thinks of me as a whore…’ Michael thought, feeling scared and sad, he nipped his bottom lip.
Sam’s heart almost broke when he looked how scared his boyfriend looked. He leaned in closer to Michael, who startled a little of his approaching. Sam wrapped his arms around him, and felt how his body was shaking in his arms. Suddenly Michael pushed him off. Michael’s breathing was tense and he looked even more frightened, than before.
“What is it?” Sam asked with worry.
“I don’t know…I just…I remembered something. I’m sorry Sam.”
“You don’t have to say you’re sorry, it’s alright, I understand. I love you no matter what, remember that. Everything will be alright.” Sam comforted. Michael was sure that he would be hearing a lot of the phrase: ‘Everything will be alright.’ He just wasn’t sure could he believe in it anymore. It felt like, it had just happened too many times already.
Michael looked out from the window; the book was resting on his stomach, left open to the page, on which he stopped reading. He did like the book very much, but he was too frustrated to concentrate on reading properly. He wanted to rise up and walk, go outside, anything but, to lie still. He sighed deeply, and looked at the small table next to him; filled with flowers and cards. He felt somewhat darkly amused by them, and he wasn’t really sure why. He had been in the hospital another three days since he woke up. ‘Almost eleven days chained down.’ He thought darkly. The chains may not have been visible, or real any more, but he felt like they were still around him. “You need to rest.” They would say. “You lost a lot of blood, the surgery wound must heal thoroughly…You’re still too weak.” He sighted again. He was still in pain, but the pain seemed to be more inside him now; it was in his mind, in his soul, and in his heart. He felt it; as a constant anguish inside his chest that refused to leave him alone, and made breathing difficult at times.
Sam, his own parent’s, Kitty, Erick and Paul visited him often. And it wasn’t as if, he wouldn’t have been thankful of their support; the fact that they wanted to spend their time in that bleak hospital room, trying to cheer him up. It was just that, he could also feel the pity, and the worry around him, and it was starting to get somewhat depressing even agonizing, for him to feel. He could see so clearly, how careful they were with their choice of words around him, fearing that they might say something that would upset him.
The dreams were the worst, endless, horrifying nightmares. Repeating of those afoul five day’s and nights, or those years spent with Ricky. At times, the dreams started out well enough, but always turned into as nightmares towards the end. Sleeping-drugs were a blessing. He had noticed, once strong enough, they gave you a sweet, dreamless sleep, and Michael knew he would need them in the future.
“The worst is over.” They would say, but he felt like the most difficult part was still ahead of him. Every day would be a struggle; getting on with the normal life, learning to live with the nightmares and demons that would surely follow him to the grave. Fear, he would always be living with that feeling. He would never trust that the worse was over. His tortures were still out there. Ricky would try to gain revenge upon him, he was almost sure of it, and Jean? Jean still wanted him back. He would have been too weak to escape from Jean and Patrick that night. So perhaps the gunshot had saved him really. Michael shivered and closed his eyes, he hadn’t told anyone about his fear that Jean would come to get him, and he wasn’t going to tell them either. He didn’t want them to worry anymore than they already did.
The door opened.
“I have a great news love.” Sam said happily, when walking further into the room. Michael turned to look at him, and smiled. Seeing Sam smile, somehow always made him feel a little bit better.
“Tell me.” He asked. Sam sat on the chair next to him.
“They have captured Ricky, Joe, and those other two American’s from the airport. They have arrested them!” Sam told him, smiling with satisfaction. Michael could hardly believe this, he felt both relieved and scared about this information. “Ricky won’t hurt another person, ever again.” Sam continued. Michael closed his eyes, sighted deeply, and then looked at Sam with a smile.
“It is good news, thank you Sam.” He said then. His smile however, vanished soon, he stared into the emptiness.
“What is it? I thought that this would cheer you up.” Sam asked, touching his face gently.
“Jean is still out there and, what about that other French man?” Michael asked.
“It’s only a matter of time till they find them, don’t worry.” Sam tried to comfort. Michael felt panic gathering inside him, as he thought about the future trial that would inevitably follow.
“What about in the future, will I have to go testify? I don’t want to go to the court, do I have to? Must I meet with all of them again? To tell all those strangers what happened…I don’t want to, please, Sam say that I don’t have to do that…” Michael’s voice was small, filled with fear, he was shaking, and tears had gathered into his eyes. Sam took him into a gentle embrace.
“I know you are scared, but they will get their rightful sentences, do not fear.”
“How long sentences? What if they won’t believe me? What if they let Ricky go? He will hurt others, he wouldn’t stop.” Michael asked his arms still around his lover, who gave him comfort.
“The evidence against them is so strong; no judge would let them free. Remember that you’re not alone in this, you have me, your parent’s, and our friends.” Sam spoke; he stroked his lover’s hair soothingly. Michael thought about this for a moment. He tried to calm himself down and find some courage inside. He needed to be brave now, for as long as Ricky would be sentenced behind bars. ‘Finally it’s his turn to feel, what it’s like to be locked up; freedom taken away.’ He thought, feeling a slight satisfaction inside. Michael looked at Sam, smiled weakly, and squeezed his hand.
“I can do it; I can, because I have you at my side.”
“So, how are you feeling today?” Sam asked.
“I’m starting to feel better…” Michael started, hesitating slightly. “…But, its damn boring to stay here in the hospital, I would like to move already.” He said, still keeping his darker thoughts inside to himself.
“Wait, just one second, I’ll be right back.” Sam told him, and rose up. Michael looked after his boyfriend a little confused, he just told him that he was bored, and what does Sam do? Runs off?
Sam returned to the room, with a nurse and a wheel-chair, he had only been gone for ten minutes. Michael looked at them with doubt.
“What now?” He asked.
”Well, I thought that we could go for a little walk around the hospital or that I’ll do the walking and you…” Sam looked at the wheelchair and smiled. Michael was quiet for awhile, he looked at Sam, the wheelchair, the nurse, and then back at Sam.
“A wheelchair?” He said, looking at it again, sniffing his nose at it. Sam noticed, and grinned.
“Don’t you sniff your nose, you can’t walk just yet, you’re still too weak, so…” Sam was smiling, as the nurse came to Michael, and helped him to sit. The woman supported him as he rose up to his feet. ‘This is so stupid.’ He thought, feeling himself so helpless, and weak. He sat on the wheelchair.
“This is just so stupid, I can’t understand why I couldn’t just walk, and there is nothing wrong with my legs you know, just look.” Michael sighted, and lifted his other foot slightly, and then the other, proving that they indeed could move. Maybe Sam wasn’t aware of that? Maybe Sam thought that he was paralytic? He wondered. Sam laughed as he pushed the wheelchair to move on the corridors.
“Darling, I know that there’s nothing wrong with your legs, but they did an operation on you, only six day’s ago, we need to be careful still…and besides, this is good practice for me when I move you around in a nursing home, when we’re old.” Sam sneered.
“You move me around? Well I’m sorry to break this in to you Samuel, but it’s going to be me to push you around in a wheelchair, after all, I’m younger then you are. So enjoy this while you can dear.” Michael told him. Sam smiled behind him; he wouldn’t mind that at all, it would be so great to be together so long, until they both die of old age.
Lilly Doyle looked at her friend in disbelieve.
“Ricky’s been arrested?” She repeated. The younger woman took a sip of her coffee and lifted her eyes up to Lilly.
“Yes, I got the call yesterday, and I’m not really sure what to think of it.” Linda said, burrowing her eyebrows.
“Why have they arrested him?” Lily asked.
“Well that’s the strangest part of it…He’s being accused of deprivation of freedom, of rape, and attempted murder, with some other men. Apparently Joe Taylor, is one of these men.” Linda told her.
“Ricky and Joe rapists? No, I can not believe that…You said that they were arrested in Paris? Who is this woman, who accuses them?” Lily asked, very confused of what she had just learned. Linda was quiet for a moment; there was a strange look in her eyes, as she looked at her back.
“It’s not a woman Lily.” The younger woman said finally, with serious voice.
“What do you mean?” Lily asked.
“The victim is not a woman, it’s a young man.” Lily rose up, the disbelieve clear in her eyes.
”But you said that…” She started. Linda looked at her.
”That they have raped him? Yes Lily that is what they are being accused off.” Lily tried hard to take in what she heard, she just couldn’t understand it, it was so strange, and she had known Ricky from the age of seven.
”But…Ric-Ricky…Ricky is a straight man….Why on earth would he rape some man?” She was stammering. Linda gazed into the inside, of her coffee cup.
“Believe me Lily, this is just as hard for me to understand as it is for you….After Evan died, Ricky has been like a brother to me. I haven’t slept all night, I have just been thinking of what I learned last night. I talked with Ricky’s lawyers, and apparently the evidence against him is strong…I do not know what to think anymore, and on the other hand…I started thinking about him last night, Ricky is handsome, successful man. Why is it, that he has never had any serious, long term relationships? I used to think, that he far too busy man, for a wife, but now…” Linda sighted and continued. “I wouldn’t want to believe this, especially when it brought one very horrible thought into my mind, that…” Linda’s voice broke, and she started to cry.
Lily leaned her back against the kitchen counter, and closed her eyes. The thought that was in Linda’s mind had rose to her own mind too. If the thing, that they accused Ricky of, was indeed true, then what if?…Lily lift her shaking hand up to her temple, trying to force the terrible thought out. Linda rose up.
“I really have to go now Lily, I’ll talk to you later.” She said and came to give her a hug… Lily looked at her, opening her mouth to say something, about the thought that ran inside both of their shocked, and scared minds, but Lily noticed that she could not say it. She prayed that it would not be true.
“I’ll see you later Linda.” She said then, her voice trembling.
“See you.” The other whispered, smiled weakly, and left. Lily listened to the front door closed after her.
She walked into the sitting room, and sat on her favorite armchair. She looked at the only photograph, on the bookshelf. During countless sleepless and lonely nights she had gazed at this photo. “I love you Lily, always have, and always will. I want to spend the rest of my life with you.” She could still hear his voice in her mind, even though it was over 30 years ago, when she had last heard it form his own mouth. She walked over to the shelf, took the photo in her hand and returned back to her seat. She looked at his face carefully from the picture, and felt the tears in her eyes.
“This is for you.” The boy smiled, and handed the small box to her. Lily opened it up, and saw the beautiful golden heart necklace inside it. “Oh Evan, this is so beautiful.” She sighed. “I had it engraved, look.” Evan said and turned the necklace around. “E&L, Love you.” She looked at her boyfriend and kissed his lips. “Wait, I’ll put it on for you.” The boy said, as they broke from the kiss. He brushed her hair gently a side from her neck and affixed the necklace lock. Lily raised her hand to touch it. “I’ll never take this off, I’ll wear it always. I love you Evan.” “And I love you Lil.”
She had done what she promised; she never took off the necklace. She had worn it ever since. Even when some other necklace would have been better to wear to some function, she had refused to take it off. She could still remember, the touch of his hands on her neck. They had meant to spend their lives together. They had been very young, but they had counted on each other’s love. They had known each other since playing age, and slowly their friendship had turned into love as they grew up.
“I know that we’re still young Lil, but I also know that I’ll never love another…I’m not a rich man like Ricky, I don’t think I’ll ever be, but I know I could make you happy. I want to have children with you, and grow old with you.” Lily remembered all their dreams, all Evan’s dreams. She remembered how often they had just lied side by side, talking about their future. They had been each others firsts. Lily still remembered what it had been like to make love with him, how soft his hands had felt like, his lips; like smooth, warm petals of a rose. No one had ever touched her the way he had, it had never again felt so good, as it had with him.
The tears fell down on her face. She remembered the change that had taken her angel away. A darkness had fallen on them, without warning. Evan had changed, and disappeared into his dread more quickly than any of them had time to understand. One moment he had been there, and the next; he was gone forever. One, warm June day, they had been laughing, making love, and dreaming of future, and the next she came face to face with a boy, who had refused to let her close. “Go away! Do not touch me Lily! I want you gone! Leave!” He had screamed, eyes glimmering with tears. He had never before screamed at her, never before had he pushed her away so roughly when she tried to get near. Lily had not understood, she had begun to cry, begging for an explanation to his behavior, but he had still refused to let her close, and anyone else who had tried. He only started to get worse, he seemed somehow haunted, tired, and desperate. He started to drift even further away, and she had desperately tried to get a hold of him, but she had failed.
7.31.1973, she would never forget that day. She had walked over to Evan’s house, attempting to finally get out, what ever was troubling him. When she had reached close to the house, she had seen the police cars and an ambulance. Two men were carrying a litter, with a covered body on it. She remembered seeing Ricky in the yard, the boy had been crying. Evan’s parents; Emily’s heart wrenching cries, and David; she had never seen a man crying so hard. Lily had run over there, hardly seeing anything through her tears.
“Evan!” She had cried out, over and over again, but the boy had not come, and she had known, but her heart didn’t want to believe. Her legs had given up from under her, and she had fallen on the lawn with her knees. “Evan!…No, no!…Ev…” Ricky had come to her, and knelt down beside her.
“Oh Lil, this is so horrible…so horrible…” He had said and wrapped his arms around her.
“Evan…I want Evan, I want him…Why isn’t he coming? Ev…”
Lily hardly remembered anything that happened the next month. She had wanted to die, her heart seemed to have broken into so many pieces, that it would be impossible for it to heal ever again. Everything had seemed to lost it’s meaning, there had been nothing but pain, she had cried out for him, called her boyfriends name in her sleep, prayed that he would return by miracle. She had almost taken her own life too, but Ricky had found her before she had managed to do that, and he had stopped her. Ricky had been there for her, and she had been there for him.
Lily shook her head. She walked into the bedroom and took an old letter between the pages of her old diary. The letter that Evan had wrote to her, for his last goodbyes. She stared at the paper, which now had a yellowish color on it after all these years, she looked at the familiar handwriting, before she began to read.
I have struggled for hours with writing this letter. I never thought I’d be saying my goodbyes to you this soon. There’s still so much to say, but the time is running out. I’m so tired, I haven’t slept in days. I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t scared, but I have already made my decision. I know that it’s a sin, what I’m about to do, but I find myself in-able to carry on any longer. I’m so sorry Lily, I hope that you’ll forgive me for this. That you all will.
My dear, sweet Lily, do not ever think, that I did not love you. I love you with all that I am, or all that I was before, I have loved you all my life. Remember us, and remember me the way that I was before, not what I have become. Those things that we talked about, the future that we planned, I wanted it, all that I said then was true, and it came straight from my heart. Something happened though, something that I can not speak about. It changed me so completely, that I cannot live another day, carrying the horrible memory of it inside. It haunts me, and it’s eating me up inside. I know, that it will not stop, the demon will not leave, and I cannot live my life with that demon that possesses me. This is the only way I can run from it, trust me, I have tried, but I can not see any other way out of this.
My love, you deserve a man, who can give you everything that he has. Who will love you everyday, and who will make you smile, and laugh. Your laugh, is the most beautiful sound in the world that I have ever heard, and you are the most beautiful thing that I have ever seen. I want you to be happy, and to be you loved. Be happy Lily, remember me, but you must carry on with your life.
I ask for your forgiveness once more. Remember that you could not have done anything that would have changed things. I just can’t go on like this. Maybe we’ll see each other again someday, in another life, or in heaven, if it welcomes me. I’ll wait for you, in the after life. I wait and watch how you live your life till you become an old lady. My last wish is to see you happy, remember this Lily.
With my undying love: Evan.
Lily looked at the letter long, squeezed it against her chest and cried. ‘Why Evan, why?’ She asked the same question, that she had asked herself all those 30-years. Evan’s last wish had been, that she would be happy and that she would carry on with her life. She tried, but happiness had been difficult to reach, her heart had never healed. She had married at the age of 26, and she had divorced four years later.
“I can not compete with a dead man, to win your heart. I’m tired of his ghost Lily.” Harry had told her, when telling her that he wanted a divorce. Lily had not said a word, she had understood. She had never really loved Harry. It had always been more like a friendship on her part. After Harry, she had been alone, her heart would always belong to a boy, who had died over thirty years ago. She knew that many thought that she was weird because of it, but she really didn’t care.
”Is Ricky the demon that you spoke of? Did he hurt you in some way?” She asked from the emptiness. She needed to know the truth, after all those years, she needed to finally know what happened in that summer, over 30-years back. She would travel to Paris to get her answers.
Ricky sat in front of the table, of the bleak, gloomy room, his hands resting on the table, handcuffs on. When Lily walked in, the man looked at her with a smile.
“Lily I’m so happy that you came, I was missing a friendly face.” Ricky said, as she sat down on the opposite seat. Lily looked at him, wondering. “This is just so ridiculous. Did you hear what they accuse me of?” He asked.
“Yes, I heard.” She answered, not taking her eyes off him.
“Me? Raping and trying to murder someone? Have you ever heard something so absurd as that?” Ricky asked, shaking his head.
Lily had heard more information of the case, during these few days, and was now very skeptical towards her old friend.
“Then why do they have your DNA?” She asked.
“How should I know? The boy is crazy, and they believe him more than me! Surely you believe me, Lily?” The woman sighed deeply, it was beginning to become clear to her that Ricky was indeed guilty, and he still tried to deny it.
“I heard that, two years ago, that same young man lived with you Ricky. For almost four years! They have witnesses, who say they thought he was your nephew. How can you explain that?” Lily asked, and leaned backwards on her chair. Ricky’s expression darkened, he was quiet for a moment. “Did you do something to Evan? Do you have something to do with his death?” Lily asked her voice tense. ‘Why didn’t I see this before?’ She asked silently to herself.
Ricky stared at her, his eyes seemed to blacken even more, than usual, and a cruel smile rose to his lips. Lily felt slightly scared of him.
“I think Lily that; I may end up in jail…” He started. “Evan was beautiful, wasn’t he?” He continued, his eyes seemed to dig into her very soul. Lily felt very uncomfortable. “Our sweet Evan. Yes, I think of him often…He came to me, that one evening, we were at the pool and he talked about you constantly ‘Lily this and Lily that’ –Do you know how annoying that was? And at the same time he was teasing me, with that perfect body of his, swinging his tight, little as in front of me…You remember that? Remember how perfect he was Lily?” Lily looked at him, so shocked that she could barely speak. “You really want to know, do you?…You want to hear, how your boyfriend begged for me? How he screamed under me? Moaning like a whore, screaming like a woman, when I took him…He bled Lily. That night he was truly beautiful.” Lily was shaking all over from fury and shock, under his piercing eyes. “You want to hear more? I took him again, on the same bed that you two must have made love on. I asked him, would he rather have me to take you instead, and he sacrificed himself for you. The wretched whore must really have loved you Lily. How stupid love can make you?…It is a shame that he killed himself, I had so much fun with him, as I did with the whore that is the reason that I’m here now.” Ricky laughed.
“You sick, disgusting, sadistic perverse! He was your friend! Evan was your friend!” Lily screamed rising up, she walked towards him screaming and crying. “Rot in hell Ricky! I hope that they rip you apart in jail!” She cried, and was about charge over him, when the guards came to pull her away. “Rot in hell!” She kept screaming when the guards lead her out. Ricky leaned back, and smiled with sick satisfaction on his face. Oh, how he enjoyed others suffering, and their pained screams. Lily would have nightmares, he thought, and his smile grew. He knew that he was going to jail, but he had no intention of staying there for the rest of his life. No, he would be free sooner or later. He knew how to play this game. He knew what to do…