Christopher Teese at Smashwords
you for downloading this ebook. You are welcome to share it with your
friends. This book may be reproduced, copied, and distributed for
non-commercial purposes, provided the book remains complete in its
original form. If you enjoyed this book, please return to your
favorite ebook retailer to discover other works by this author. Thank
you for your support.
14 year old Will
Shepherd stood in the bathroom, shirtless, in his blue flannel
pajamas, looking intently at himself in the bathroom mirror, hands
firmly clasped on either side of the bathroom sink.
He didn't move. Just
stared at himself.
The bathroom was dark.
The only source of light was the small nightlight on the middle of
the wall to the right of the sink. He would be able to see well
enough even if it weren’t there, though. His eyes had adjusted to
He stared at himself in
the mirror. At the fake twin image of himself. But what he saw
reflected there was not a reflection of the same Will Shepherd that
the rest of the world saw and knew.
He only saw an
abomination. A doppelganger.
He looked ugly. He
That's not to say that
he actually thought he was physically bad looking. What he saw as
ugly was not his outside physical appearance. No, he was seeing past
the facade. He was seeing past the image he had been trying so hard
to build and maintain in front of others and himself.
But today had been a
bad day. A really bad day. Moreso than ever before, as he looked into
the mirror, he could see the truth staring back at him, stronger than
before, and the truth was so utterly repulsive to him.
He felt as if he were
at an epiphany. Like he was finally on the verge of admitting it to
Admitting it to
yourself was the first step. Then once you did that, you could choose
to divulge your newly confessed truth to the world and live with the
consequences, or you could choose to hide it forever and live in
silent pain for the rest of your life.
Of course, you could
also deny the truth to yourself and try living out your life based
off the lie that you have already crafted and preferred to tell
yourself, but wasn't that what he had already been doing? He felt
Yes, he was on the
verge of confessing it to himself. But he didn't want to. Couldn't.
He closed his eyes and
started thinking of Julie. Of Addison. Betty. Matilda. All the
prettiest girls in school. He tried to imagine himself with them, in
various scenes in which he was in heated make-out sessions with each
one of them and… more.
Nothing. I feel nothing. Why do I
In his fantasy, he was
going at it with Matilda. Thinking about her pretty, long, curly
brown hair, her smooth lips, and her tight gorgeous body.
His tongue was in her
mouth, and their hands were in each other’s hair. Their bodies were
pressed close as they passionately grinded up against each other.
Yes... this is it... this is the way
things should be...
Fantasy Will pulled
away from the make out session briefly to look into Fantasy Matilda's
eyes, but was horrified to see that Fantasy Matilda was no longer
Matilda anymore but had become Fantasy Jake.
No no no no no no!!!!!!
Will slammed his fist
hard into the side of the sink. His hand was going to smart later,
but he didn't care. Breathing heavily, he held his head in his hands
and shook it violently as he slowly sank down onto the floor.
He tried to kick the
fantasy out of his head. But now that it was already there, it was
unstoppable. He wanted to be rid of it, but there was something else,
something much deeper, that pushed him hard to continue the fantasy.
He was trying to push
it out of his mind. But he was losing the battle.
Jake had resumed the
passionate make out session and was kissing him hard now. In the
fantasy, they were in the middle of the school hallway, alone. Even
though Will knew this was the last place he would ever want to fathom
something like this taking place, he found that he didn't really have
much control over where the fantasy was taking place either.
Jake was furiously
attacking his mouth. Will found himself melting in Jake's arms in a
way he never could have with Matilda. He was putty in Jake's embrace.
He reached up to grab Jake's hair and started returning the kissing
with a fiery passion.
Jake made a sudden
movement and slammed Will up against the lockers. Fantasy Will didn't
protest, but instead welcomed the roughness and sweet, sweet brief
rush of pain that pulsed throughout his body. He wanted Jake to be
Then the scene abruptly
shifted to Will's bedroom. Jake was shoving Will down on his bed,
then was on top of him, kissing his neck, moving his hand up Will's
Will was lying in the
fetal position on the floor. He was crying now.
Why? Why did this keep
happening to him?
Dare he admit it? Dare
he admit that he was actually...
Will tried to throw the
mental image out of his head. Tried to imagine Matilda replacing Jake
once more. But Matilda reappearing in his fantasy and him imagining
kissing her like he had been Jake made Will feel like throwing up.
Will reached up and
grasped the sink, slowly pulling himself up.
He looked at himself in
the mirror and was even more horrified now at the image he saw.
whispered angrily to himself, tears still coming to his eyes. "You
can't be like this! You just can't! This isn't the way you're
supposed to be!"
When he had first hit
puberty, everything had seemed alright. He had gone on a few dates.
Even received his first kiss (from a girl). But for some reason,
things had never gone any farther than that. He couldn't really
explain why. They just didn't.
It was himself. He knew
it was himself. It was like there was some kind of mental block in
his mind that he couldn't explain.
But it had begun to
dawn on him as time went on. It wasn't girls that got him all hot and
bothered. It was other guys. This had profoundly disturbed him. He
had tried to push it out of his head right then and there. He was
determined that he wasn't going to be gay. He was going to be
straight. A ladies man. Like his older brother, Tom. It was his
Except it kind of
wasn't. Will never fantasized about girls. He couldn't. He tried. But
his fantasies always found themselves going back to the boys at
Jake was openly gay,
Will knew. And single.
Jake was always nice to
Will. Of course, Jake was always nice to everybody. But he always
seemed extra nice to Will in particular. Will wasn't sure if he was
just imagining it or if it was just wishful thinking.
Will usually went out
of his way to avoid Jake. He didn't want to, but he had determined he
wasn't going to give into his unnatural desires. He had been
determined he was going to beat this at all costs.
But he never could.
He had seen Jake this
afternoon. They were on opposite sides of the hallway. Jake had seen
Will across the hallway and had smiled brightly, waving at him.
Will usually returned
such gestures. But he couldn't today. His thoughts about Jake had
been at their all-time strongest this morning. He had been so upset
over it he couldn't think about anything else.
Seeing Jake this
particular day, and that warm, kind way he had smiled at him had
nearly caused him to crack.
Will didn't smile or
wave back. He immediately did an about face and starting walking
really fast in the opposite direction.
His brain had been a
blur at that point. He walked past a janitorial closet. Deciding it
was the most preferable place he wanted to be in his current state of
mind, he looked around to see if anyone else was looking in his
direction and then discreetly slipped in.
He had started sobbing.
He had cried for two
reasons. One, because he could not control or repress his pent up
feelings. And two, because he knew Jake had seen his reaction, and he
was now thinking of how Jake probably felt.
Could it have been,
that Jake had a crush on Will like he had been secretly hop...
thinking? And now he had gone and blown that. Jake's feelings were
probably hurt. Will would probably run into him tomorrow, see him
with some other guy, and his heart would...
Will had passed by Jake
towards the end of the school day. Will had been so lost in thought
he hadn't realized Jake was even in the crowded student hallway. He
saw Jake, but Jake didn't even look at him. This made Will feel like
Tom had told him he
looked upset on the way home. Will had denied it, but Tom didn't seem
to buy it.
The thought of his
brother brought another surge of rage through Will.
Will had been hurting
really bad that evening. But he and Tom were playing Street Fighter
on their Playstation 3 in the living room. The rush of competition
and spending time with his brother had been helping to take his mind
off his problems. Then he and Tom had started getting a little too
competitive and things ended up turning into a wrestling match in
which they started shooting off typical good natured insults at each
other, until Tom suddenly let loose with one that was unforgivable:
"Bring it on, faggot!"
The words had felt as
if they had struck Will hard at the center of his soul. He almost
lost control of himself again.
Tom had noticed Will's
hesitancy, but misunderstanding it, had laid in some more.
matter? You want some more or not? Come on and take it like a man!
Unless you like to take it like a girl!"
Will had slugged him.
He realized what he had
done only the moment after his punch connected, and a very shocked
Tom went falling on his back, a little bit of blood in his mouth.
HELL...?" Tom had said angrily.
Oh crap shouldn't have done that
shouldn't have done that
Tom leapt up and a
punch of his own connected with Will's face. Will just sat there
stunned and looked at Tom. Tom's eyes were anger (hate) filled.
Will wanted to cry.
Instead he got up and headed for their room.
"Lay off me!"
he had said.
"Lay off YOU?
YOU'RE the one who got so competitive you punched me hard in the
face! HEY!" Tom had yelled.
"DON'T YOU DARE
TALK TO ME!" Will had yelled as he entered their room and
slammed the door hard.
PROBLEM, MAN? WHAT'S BEEN UP WITH YOU TODAY?" his brother had
Will didn’t answer.
He jumped onto his bed and laid on his side. He didn't move. He
didn't cry. He was feeling so much hurt on the inside he couldn't
process anything. Tom didn't come in the room after him or hardly
acknowledge him for the rest of the day.
Will had laid on the
bed until their mom had gotten home and fixed dinner.
The dinner table was
more awkwardly silent than usual. Mom hadn't realized both he and Tom
had bruises on their faces until they were all sitting together. She
was a little livid over the fact that they had gotten into a fight
where they had bruised each other, but she couldn't get either of
them to tell her what it was all about.
Tom couldn't tell her
because he honestly didn't have a clue. And Will couldn't say
because... well, he just couldn't say. Mom had told them they had
until tomorrow evening to sort out their differences or they were
Will felt his brothers'
eyes on him the entire meal. Will couldn't look him in the face.
Tom didn't speak to him
the rest of the night. Tom had spent the rest of the night playing
his game by himself, and Will had spent it on his laptop.
When 10' o clock came,
they both climbed into their beds without a single word to each
other. Tom drifted off within minutes. Will couldn't. He was still
Will couldn't explain
to Tom why he did what he did. Ever.
Not after what Tom
"Bring it on, faggot!"
It was an insult. A
playful insult, but an insult nevertheless. It was meant to imply
that being gay somehow meant that Will was less than human. At least,
that was the way he felt.
"What's the matter? You want
some more or not? Come on and take it like a man. Unless you like to
take it like a girl!"
He couldn't explain how
Tom's words, playful though they had been, had brought on such sudden
indescribable emotional pain.
It was at that moment
that Will's real identity shown through. At least in his
subconscious, he confessed to himself in that who he really was. And
Tom's epithet was not
merely just a humorous insult. It was an attack on his identity,
rejection of him for being who he was.
Will looked at himself
in the mirror and started to laugh. It was not the laugh of humor.
His laughs were as
silent as he could possibly make them, as he didn't want to wake
"I'm gay." he
whispered to himself in the mirror, and laughed some more.
So, that was it, was
it? The jig was up? He had finally confessed it to himself?
His mind still didn't
want to believe it. But his subconscious was telling him otherwise.
He found himself slowly
collapsing to the ground again. He curled up into a ball in the fetal
"I'm gay." he
whispered again to himself.
Yeah... that's why it hurts so bad.
Will didn't want to be
gay. He wanted to be normal. He wanted to fit in. Now, because of
this, he would be an outcast. If people knew, if anybody ever figured
him out, he would be constantly made fun of and ridiculed.
He already had to put
up with some bullying because he was a total nerd. He could only
imagine what he would have to go through once his true sexual
identity became known.
Tom has already rejected me.
Technically he actually
hadn't yet. But he would.
He imagined confessing
his secret to Tom. He imagined the disgusted look Tom would surely
get on his face. His and Tom's relationship would be torn apart. Tom
probably wouldn't even want to sleep in the same room with him
anymore. Not that they had much of a choice in the tiny house they
lived in ever since their parents had gotten a divorce.
And then the ridicule
wouldn't just end at school. He could only imagine the torrent of
insults he would have to put up with at home from Tom.
He had already done it.
He had already shown EXACTLY what he thought of gays. Will didn't
think he could handle being hated by his brother.
As much of an ass as
Tom could be sometimes, he was the closest thing in the world to
Will. Being hated by Tom would be unbearable.
Will closed his eyes.
The scene with Jake returned.
Will found himself
longing now for it to NOT be a fantasy, but a reality. He wanted to
go to school tomorrow, find Jake very first thing, apologize, and
tell him how he really felt.
But he couldn't do such
a thing without cluing Tom into the fact that his baby brother was in
fact an actual "faggot".
Will didn't even want
to think about what his parents would think of him. How disappointed
they might be.
He could tell Jake. He
might reciprocate, and Will would find himself in a fulfilling
relationship for once. But then he would be hated by everyone he
cared about and persecuted by most everyone else at school.
Or he could just keep
it to himself. Be accepted. Lose Jake. Live his life alone, secretly
feeling forever miserable on the inside.
There was no way he
Will managed to pull
himself up one last time and slowly trudged back to his bedroom.
He looked over at Tom's
bed. Tom was sleeping contentedly smiling in his sleep. Probably
dreaming about some girl. The bruise from where Will had slugged him
was still very noticeable even though it was dark.
Will started feeling
angry again, but it was less anger now and mostly a very deep hurt.
Will turned away from
his brother, pulled himself into his bed on his side, and pulled the
covers all the way over the top of his head.
Tomorrow he was going
to have to make a decision. Either way, he was sure it was going to
hurt like hell.
He wanted to just fall
asleep and forget, if for only a blissful short time, that this day
had actually happened. But then the sobs started to come. They were
heavy. He tried to be as silent as he could, but he had officially
lost all control.
Tom said in an elevated whisper.
Will felt his comforter
being pulled back.
He had been too loud.
He had woken Tom up.
Tom sounded genuinely
concerned. As Will turned to look up into Tom's face, he could see
actual worry etched in his brother's face. The anger from earlier
seemed to be long gone.
Worried, is he?
Will thought. Well, let's see just how long he's worried. Let him
know. Let him know his brother is a stupid little "faggot"
after all. Might as well. Might as well hurry up get the rejection
over with. I'm sure I won't be able to hide it forever anyways. Why
not? I'll tell him. Then he can hurt me. Hurt me like the worthless
little faggot I am.
In between heavy sobs,
Will simply looked up into his brother's eyes and said: "I'm
Tom's face took on a
look of confusion, then shock, then finally lit up as he suddenly put
two and two together and it dawned on him. "Oh, God." he
Here it comes. Will
thought. He was prepared for whatever was about to happen. He just
hoped it came and went quickly.
Tom sat down on the
bed, grabbed Will, and gently pulled him into a hug.
"I'm sorry, Will.
I'm so sorry. I didn't realize... I mean... I didn't mean what I said
the way I did earlier. I didn't know!"
Tom sat there, holding
him, not moving the rest of the night, as Will continued to sob,
feeling the pain beginning to wash away for the first time in nearly
About The Author
Teese lives in from Houston, TX. He has written several books, mostly
of the drama/dark fantasy variety.
Other Books by Christopher Teese:
The Pit 2: The Boy
Who Lived In A Pit
The Pit 3: The
The Pit 4: The
The Death of
Connect With Me Online