Jake slowly stretched as he woke up to the sunshine streaming in through the window. He groaned as he started to sit up, and rubbed the back of his neck.He finally focused and saw a grinning boy sitting cross-legged next to him.
"Good morning, Son."
Trevor leaned forward and kissed him on the cheek. Jake wrapped his arms around the boy and hugged him.
"Is your mom up yet?"
"I don't think so. I was just waiting for you to get up."
"Well, let me go to the bathroom and we'll go check on her."
Jake got up and took care of business before he and Trevor went to Sandy's bedroom, followed by Dee. They went in and Jake leaned down and kissed her. She opened her eyes and smiled.
"Morning, guys. What time is it?"
"Eight thirty. How's your head?"
"Much better, thanks. Okay, you guys get out of here and let me get cleaned up and dressed."
They left the room and walked to the kitchen. On the way Jake went into Trevor's room and retrieved his gun, slipping it into the back of his pants and pulling his shirt over it. Trevor had gone ahead to the kitchen, and got some cereal and sat down at the breakfast table. Jake noticed a car parked out front with two guys sitting in it. He smiled and went out the front door. He smiled as he neared the guys who sat in there. He walked over to them and leaned in the window.
"Hey, boss. We just came on duty, relieving the two who were here last night. Tom called us last night and told us what's going on. Is everyone okay?"
"Yeah, we're fine, thanks. Did Tom tell you he'd be by this morning?"
"Yes sir, he said it'd probably be about 10."
"All right, thanks."
Jake went back inside and got a pot of coffee going. He sat down and had a bowl of cereal with Trevor.
"Where'd you go?"
"I went outside to talk to a couple of my guys who're outside."
"You mean the security guys that work for you?"
"Yeah, your Uncle Tom called some guys to watch over us for right now."
"Do you think Roger might try something?"
"I don't think so. He's probably long gone, maybe even in Mexico by now, but the Sheriffs have a deputy watching over Jeremy just to make sure, and I decided I wanted the same thing for my two favorite people."
"Are we going to see Jeremy today?"
"Yes, we need to. He probably doesn't know about his mom yet and he needs us there. We'll wait until your Uncle Tom and his family get here before we go."
"Good, Jeremy's going to need Jared."
"Yeah, that will probably help, but he's going to need family too, and that's us, at least it is for now."
Trevor nodded and they finished their cereal. A few minutes later his mom came in, picked up the phone, and poured herself a cup of coffee. She kissed Trevor on the top of his head; he looked up and smiled at her. When she neared Jake she leaned over and gave him a quick kiss, before she sat herself at the table. She dialed a number and waited for it to be answered.
"Morning, Keith... ... No, I won't be in today... ... . . I got jumped by someone last night... ... No, I'm okay, they say I had a minor concussion, but other than that I'm okay... ... No, I didn't see who it was, just a dark shape... ... It was here at the house... ... Yeah, I'll be in tomorrow. The reason I called, besides letting you know that I won't be in today, is to ask you about what I, well Jake and I, need to do, to become guardians for a boy we know... ... . It's kind of a long story and I'll talk to you tomorrow about it, but the short answer is that he lost his mom yesterday,y and since he and Trevor are real good friends, we decided to see if we could get custody of him and be his foster parents... ... The police are checking for other family, but there's not much to go on, so they'll let us know if they find any family; until then we want to be his family... ... If they don't find any, then we plan to make him part of our family permanently... ... Okay, thanks, let me know what we need to do. Call me on my cell.... I'll talk to you later... Yes, bye, and thanks, Keith."
She hung up and looked at her two guys who were sitting quietly waiting to hear the answer.
"He says he'll look into it, and he thinks that he can get a temporary foster parent order, until we can get a more permanent license. He thinks that the foster care service should not have a problem, since they've always have a hard time placing older kids, but he'll let us know as soon as he can."
"Fair enough. Also, just so you know, I have some of our security guys watching the house. Alex, the Sergeant who talked to us at the hospital, said that they have a deputy stationed outside Jeremy's room, just in case, so I have our guys watching us. Tom and the family will be here about ten. Once they get here, I thought we'd head on over to the hospital."
"Okay, that sounds like a good idea. Trevor, why don't you get a couple of those travel mugs and fill them with coffee and take them to the guys out front?"
"Sure, mom. I'll go change first."
Trevor rinsed his cereal bowl out and put it in the dishwasher before doing what she asked him. Once he had left the house she looked at Jake.
"Do you think Roger may still try something?"
"I don't know for sure, but I'd rather be safe than sorry. He's probably long gone, maybe even out of the country, or at least the state."
"You're probably right about being safe. I hope they find him soon."
"Yeah, me too."
Trevor took the full mugs outside and received some grateful smiles from the two guys in the car when he delivered them. He waved and went back inside the house. Jake and Sandy were sitting in the living room, watching TV and drinking coffee; their fingers were entwined. He sat next to Jake who put his arm around Trevor's shoulders.
At about ten, they heard the familiar sound of Tom's Suburban pull up out front. Trevor got up and went to the door. He no sooner had the door open when he was nearly knocked off his feet by Zach. Zach held him in a bear hug that was so tight that he could hardly breathe. After a few moments in which Jared and Terry walked around the two boys, Zach loosened his hold and pulled back a bit to look Trevor over. His eyes threatened to overflow as he studied Trevor's face and he reached up and touched Trevor's bruised cheek where Roger had hit him a couple of times. Trevor smiled at Zach, which brought an answering smile to Zach's face.
"Okay, Zach, you can see that he's all right, let him breathe."
Zach looked over his shoulder at his dad, as he entered the house after talking to the security guys out front, and grinned before he wiped his eyes clear. Zach took Trevor's hand and they walked together into the living room, where they took a seat next to each other on the couch. Everyone gathered around, looking at Jake, Sandy and Trevor expectantly.
"All right, Jake, we're all here, the family is gathered. What went down? The boys have been driving me nuts all morning, wanting us to come here sooner, but I told them to let you guys relax a bit and get well rested before we came over."
"It was a pretty shitty evening yesterday, but everyone came out of it okay for the most part. Jeremy is in the hospital and we're going to go see him in a little bit, but here's the story. Yesterday afternoon, Trevor went over to Jeremy's. When he knocked on the door, Roger Smith, Denise's boyfriend, was there and invited him in. He escorted him to Jeremy's room and Trevor saw Jeremy... damn, sorry, but this is not going to be good, but I know that the boys are going to hear it from Trevor anyway, so I'll just tell you. I don't think Trevor wants to say what he saw."
Trevor shook his head, unshed tears in his eyes. Zach put his arm around Trevor.
"I thought not. Okay, when he went in the room, he saw Jeremy naked and tied to the bed. Before he could do anything Roger hit him a couple of times, then put something under his nose that knocked him out. Trevor woke up after a while and found himself naked and tied up on the floor, and he saw that Roger... was forcing... himself on Jeremy."
"WHAT!? HE DID WHAT!?"
Jared was standing there pale-faced and shocked. Tom went over to him and guided him over to the chair, and took him up in his lap. Jared started to cry into his father's chest. Jake paused for a bit as Terry went over to the chair and knelt next to it; she rubbed Jared's back. He subsided after a bit.
"I'm sorry, Jared; there was no easy way to say this. Do you want to hear the rest?"
Jared lifted his head from his dad's chest and looked at Jake with his eyes red and puffy and he nodded.
"Okay, so when Trevor became conscious, he saw Roger... preoccupied, and he also noticed that Roger had not tied him up too tightly, so he was able to move carefully enough that he was able to move without Roger noticing him. He picked up Jeremy's bat and was able to sneak up behind him and hit him with it."
"Good, I hope he killed him."
"No... he only knocked him out; he was still a little woozy from whatever Roger used on him. Anyway, he was able to get Jeremy and himself freed; they ran back here, well actually to my house. During the struggle Trevor lost his keys and couldn't get into the house, so they passed out on one of the lounges in my backyard. I was out and Dee guarded them while they slept. When I got home, I saw Sandy's car in the driveway, but no lights on, so I came over here and I got kind of a funny feeling as I got closer, so I quietly made my way up to the front door and when I opened it, I found Sandy out cold on the floor. I think Roger found Trevor's keys and went looking for Trevor and Jeremy, thinking they went here to his home. I think he was in the house and Sandy surprised him is all, and he hit her and knocked her out. There is no proof that it was Roger, but it makes sense as the house was not broken into. Lucky it wasn't anything more than that. Anyway, I called 911 and the Sheriffs and Paramedics showed up. While they were taking care of her, I decided to go home and make some calls to try and find Trevor. My plan was to call Jeremy and then you guys if he wasn't there. I thought it was just a surprised burglar at the time. Anyway, as I was trying to dial, Dee kept jumping up and down in the backyard and barking and he wouldn't stop. I finally went to the back door and was going to tell at him to shut up, when I noticed the boys out cold in the back. I quickly ran out front and yelled for the deputy – it was Rick Bonelli – who had answered the call."
"Oh yeah, Rick, good guy."
"I told him to stop the paramedics and follow me. I turned and ran out back, finding the boys cuddled up on the lounge in just their shorts; they were battered, bloody and bruised. Trevor woke up when I got to them, but Jeremy stayed unconscious. The paramedics called another unit, and one of them worked on the boys while the other tended to Sandy. When the other unit arrived, the paramedics left for the hospital with Sandy, and after checking on Trevor, the guys from the second unit concentrated on Jeremy; he was bleeding and they needed to get him taken care of. They quickly got him on a gurney and got him out of there and to the hospital. I followed with Trevor in the Jeep. We followed right behind the paramedics and they took us all into the trauma room. After a short time in the Trauma Room, they moved Trevor and Sandy to another room nearby, because they weren't in too bad a shape, but Jeremy had to have surgery, because Roger had damaged him when he... forced himself on him. Alex Tratner came and took Trevor's statement and that's when Sandy and I heard about what happened. They sent a unit to Jeremy's house and they found Denise. Roger probably killed her."
"Oh my god!"
"Yeah, they found the evidence of what Trevor described; she must have surprised Roger as he was trying to clean up and he killed her. Jeremy doesn't know yet."
"Okay, what now? So did they catch the son of a bitch?"
"No, he seems to have gotten away. They have an APB out on him; I gave him a description of his car, so they're looking for that as well."
"So I guess the first thing is that we need to go be there for Jeremy. Did he have any other family?"
"I don't think so. Do you know of any, Trevor?"
"No, I can't remember any. We can ask Jeremy when we see him, but I don't think so."
"So Sandy, Trevor and I have talked, and we're going to take him in until we find out about family, or if there are none, he can stay with us as long as he wants."
"Good, but isn't social services going to get involved?"
"Most likely, but I've got my boss working on getting the foster care forms and all that taken care of. He's going to call us later today and tell us what we need to do."
"How are you doing, Sandy?"
"Fine, Terry, just a little headache, remnants of the concussion, but nothing serious. I'll be fine by tomorrow. I'm supposed to rest today, but there is no way I'm going to abandon that boy in the hospital when he finds out about his mom. So I'm going. And don't even think of stopping me, Jake."
Jake, who was about to say something, closed his mouth at her determined look. The look on Jake's face broke some of the tension. Jared jumped off his dad's lap.
"What're we waiting for? I gotta see Jeremy and see if he's all right."
"Yeah, we should go."
They gathered everyone together and left the house. Jake stopped and said something to the security guys before they got in his Jeep. Tom followed them in the Suburban. They drove to the hospital and went inside. At the front desk they found out what room Jeremy was in and they went up. He had been put into a large private room. As they neared his room, they saw a Sheriff's deputy sitting outside it. Jake motioned the families to wait and he walked up to him.
"Good morning Deputy. I'm Jake MacLaren and we've come to visit Jeremy Davis."
"Hi, Mr. MacLaren. Sergeant Tratner said you'd probably be by this morning."
Jake lowered his voice. "Has anyone told Jeremy about his mother yet?"
"No sir, the sergeant said to let him know when you came in. The detectives want to talk to the boy, but the sergeant said that they had to wait until you guys came in before that happens. Since you're here, I'm going to let him know."
"Okay, thanks. Oh, I almost forgot; Tom, come here, would you?"
Tom walked over to join Jake and the deputy. When he got there, Jake pulled out his wallet and took a card out of it to show to the deputy. The deputy's eyes registered surprise when he looked at the Concealed Weapons Permit. Jake looked at Tom.
"I assume you have your card with you?"
Tom smiled and pulled his wallet out as well. He also took out a similar card and showed it to the deputy. He nodded to them after inspecting the cards.
"I'm guessing the reason that you are showing me those is because you are presently carrying?"
"Yes. Mine's in the back of my pants under the shirt."
"I have mine in an ankle holster."
"Fair enough; thank you for letting me know. I will also inform the detectives when they get here so that there are no misunderstandings."
"Thanks, Deputy... Harrison."
"Part of the job, sir."
Jake motioned for the families to come over and the deputy stepped away and put in a call to the dispatchers. Jake opened the door and they filed in. There was a bed with a curtain that could be closed for privacy. The rest of the room held a few chairs for family members to sit in while visiting the room's occupant. The blinds in the room were partially closed and they could see that Jeremy was sleeping. The blanket was pulled up to cover most of his body and he was lying on his side facing away from the door. There were several chairs in the room. There was an IV next to him that was running under the blanket. Jared couldn't help himself; he moved quickly around the bed to the side that Jeremy was facing. He could see the bruises on his face, and he reached out to lightly touch Jeremy's face. Slowly Jeremy's eyes opened and as they focused, Jared's welling eyes overflowed and he smiled at his boyfriend.
"Ja... Jared? Wha... whe...."
Then Jeremy's face changed as realization set in and he closed his eyes; tears leaked out as he started to cry. Jared quickly leaned down and snaked an arm under Jeremy's neck and the other around his back; he quickly but gently got into bed with him and held him, kissing his forehead and cheek and murmuring to him. His own tears mingled with Jeremy's. Jeremy's arms came out and wrapped tightly around Jared, and now he really started to cry. Trevor and Zach moved forward and leaned down to put their arms around both of the boys, giving them all the comfort that they could. They stayed like that for several minutes until Jeremy's crying subsided down to some sniffles, which were copied by the other boys, and the adults in the room for that matter. Jake heard a sniff and quietly drawn breath behind him. He turned and saw the deputy wipe his eyes. He smiled and got a smile returned. The deputy motioned for him to come out in the hall. Jake followed him.
"Call me Jake; I used to be one of you guys."
"Yes si... uh, Jake, and call me Jim. I just heard back from the station; the detectives working this case are on their way here to ask the boy some questions and anything more that anyone else can add."
"Okay. When they get here, please have them wait and call me out of the room. I want to talk to them first before they go talk to Jeremy, and I still have to tell him about his mom, and that's going to rough on him. So please ask them to be patient with us and give us some time if they get here before we're ready."
"Sure, Jake, I'll let you know when they get here."
"Thanks for the help and for watching over him."
"I'm glad to help. I have a younger brother; he's in high school, but if something like this had happened to him at that age, I'd have been looking for blood."
"I know, I don't know what I'd do if I saw Roger Smith right now. I'd be very hard pressed not to let my Indian blood take over and take his scalp and hang it from my lodgepole while he is still alive."
"Well, if you want, I'll hold him while you scalp him."
"Ha, but we wouldn't want you to risk your career."
"It'd be worth it for that."
He clapped the deputy on the shoulder and shook his hand before turning back to the room. The blinds had been opened more to let in some sunlight, now that Jeremy was awake. Jake saw that Jeremy had calmed down and was cuddled up with Jared; his eyes were closed. Sandy was sitting in a seat next to the boys in the bed. Trevor and Zach were standing by the windows with their arms around each other. Tom and Terry were sitting in chairs in another part of the room. The adults looked up when Jake came back in the room. All of them had a look of sadness on their faces as they looked at him; he knew what was coming. Jake took a deep breath to calm himself, and slowly let it out as he moved forward. He put a hand on Sandy's shoulder and she moved her hand up to cover his; she gave it a squeeze before letting go. Trevor and Zach's eyes followed Jake as he neared the bed. Jake took a seat on the bed and reached out to the two boys. He tried to take Jeremy in his arms but Jared looked at him and shook his head. Jake nodded and stretched his arms out to encompass both boys and gently rocked them together. After a few moments Jeremy opened his eyes and turned around to look up at Jake's face. Jake tried to smile at him, through his own tears. Suddenly Jeremy got a puzzled look on his face as he realized something and he started to look around the room. He frantically searched for the one person who was not there. He let go of Jared and got more agitated.
"Wh... whe... where's my mom?"
His voice started to climb.
"Where is she!? Is she hurt!? Why isn't she here!? Where's my mom!?"
He looked up at Jake and saw the stricken look and the tears running down his face as he looked at Jeremy.
"N... noo... noooooo!!!"
His voice had climbed to a wail and he started to struggle against Jake, hitting him on the side and the chest. Jake tightened his hold on Jeremy, trying to control his movements and get him calmed down. Jeremy's thrashing knocked Jared back off the bed and onto the ground. His swinging arms ripped the IV out of the back of his hand, which caused it to bleed. Jake exerted more control and eventually Jeremy just stopped fighting and tightened his arms around Jake and sobbed. While he did that, Tom had found some gauze pads in the room and had grabbed Jeremy's hand and put pressure on the IV site to stop the bleeding. Jake got him under control, and Jared got up off the floor and rubbed his butt and winced. He got back up on the bed again behind his boyfriend and snaked his arms between Jeremy and Jake and held him, laying his head against Jeremy's back, whispering to him, doing his best to soothe him. Finally Jeremy calmed down and finally looked up at Jake and with a shaky voice asked what happened. Jake smoothed the hair back from Jeremy's damp forehead and kissed him there, before speaking.
"Honey, you... your mom is gone."
Jeremy buried his head in Jake's chest and wrapped his arms tighter around Jake, shaking his head back and forth as his body shook. Jake and Jared both whispered to him and soothed him until he calmed down. His muffled emphatic voice came from Jake's chest.
"Okay, son. She was found in your home. I don't know if they have any direct proof, but I think she surprised Roger trying to clean up his mess, or he surprised her or whatever and he killed her. The police have collected evidence and they're investigating what happened."
Jeremy nodded in acknowledgement of what Jake was saying, but kept his head against Jake's chest for a few more moments before he looked up at him again.
"What's going to happen to me now?"
Jake ran his hand through Jeremy's hair and gave him a gentle smile.
"Well, that kind of depends on you. First, do you have any relatives that you know of?"
"My grandparents live in Simi Valley, but they're the only ones that I know of. My mom didn't have any brothers or sisters."
"Okay, then we need to get their name and phone number so we can call them and let them know what happened."
"Their phone number is probably in my m... mom's cell phone."
"Okay, as soon as I can get it, we'll give them a call."
"Will I have to go live with them now?"
"I don't know. We didn't know if you had any relatives, so Trevor's mom and I have started paperwork to have you live with us legally, but with your grandparents around, I don't know if they'll let us now."
"I'll talk to them. They're pretty old. I mean they were older when they had my mom and so they have to be in their sixties or seventies now. It might be hard for them to take care of me and I don't want to leave everything and everyone here. Please, please help me talk to them about me living with you."
Jake looked into the pleading eyes of Jeremy and grinned at him.
"I promise we will do everything we can. I agree, it might be hard for them to raise a teenager at their age, but we'll have to see. They are your next of kin, and unless they relinquish custody of you, then you'll probably have to go live with them, but we'll all make sure we stay in touch as much as possible."
Jeremy buried his head in Jake's chest for a few minutes before he let Jake go and turned around and hugged Jared again; both of them relaxed in the bed and comforted each other. Jared raised the head of the bed up. There was a knock at the door and the deputy looked in, motioning to Jake. Jake nodded and, after he had given Jeremy's shoulder a squeeze, he got up, followed by Tom. They went outside and saw a couple of men in street clothes standing with the deputy outside the room. They nodded to the two men as they exited the room, and closed the door behind them.
"Ja... Mr. MacLaren, these are the detectives working the case."
"Hello Mr. MacLaren. I'm Detective Bob Graham and this is my partner Detective Jason Matsura."
"Gentlemen, it's nice to meet you. This is my friend and business partner, Tom Browning."
Jake and Tom shook each one's hand.
"You guys can call me Jake; we don't need to be so formal."
"And you can call me Tom."
"Okay, Jake, Tom. I'm Bob and this is Jay. We need to ask the boy some questions about the attack; do you think he will be able to."
"Look, guys, I don't know for sure, because he just found out about his mom, and he's kind of shaken up. Give me a few minutes and I'll talk to him. I think I can convince him to talk to you, but it's up to him. Everything is a little raw right now."
"We understand. We heard from Alex that you are acting as his guardian right now?"
"Yes, Jeremy just told us that he has some grandparents out in Simi Valley, but until we can contact them, my fiancée and myself will be looking out for him."
"Sounds good. Do you know the contact information on the grandparents?"
"No, but it's supposed to be on Denise's, Jeremy's mom's, cell phone. So we need to get a hold of that to take care of it."
"Okay, we'll clear it so that you can get it. I think her purse was taken in as evidence. I'll check with the lab and see if the phone is in the purse and get back to you."
"Thanks, I appreciate it. I'll go talk to him now, just give me a few minutes."
They nodded as he and Tom reentered the room. Everyone looked up as they approached. Jake went over to Jeremy's side and sat on the bed again and gently smoothed his hair back.
"Jer, there are some detectives outside that need to talk to you about what happened. I know it will be real hard, but it's really important. They need to get all the information that they can so that can catch Roger and stop him from doing this to anyone else ever. Do you think you can do it? If you don't want to, I'll tell them to come back another time, but that's up to you. But I think it would be best if you get it over with. Do you think you can?"
He swallowed and nodded.
"I think so, Jake."
He looked at the other adults and turned a little red.
"Can Jared, Trevor, Zach and you stay? I'm sorry, but it's kind of embarrassing to... to talk about it in front of Jared's and Trevor's moms."
Jeremy suddenly got a worried look on his face.
"Jake, are the detectives... guys... you know... men?"
Jake chuckled. "Yeah, they are. They seem nice."
"Say no more, bud. I'll take the ladies out for some coffee, and we'll bring something to drink back for everyone else, okay?"
Jeremy nodded. Each of the other adults came over and gave Jeremy a hug before they left. Jake followed them out. Trevor and Zach took seats on the bed to be as near to Jeremy as they could. Jared continued to hold Jeremy. Outside Jake motioned for the detectives and they followed him back into the room. They were slightly taken aback when they saw the four boys on the bed and Jeremy being held tightly by Jared. They turned to Jake, who was behind them.
"Uh, Jake, do you think it's a good idea for these other boys to be here?"
"They know what happened and they are Jeremy's closest friends. He needs all the support that he can get right now and he wanted them here."
Jake looked at Jared and Jeremy, and Jared leaned close and whispered in Jeremy's ear before he looked at Zach and Trevor, who both nodded after a moment. The adults looked puzzled at the looks that passed between the four boys. Trevor turned to Jake.
"You can tell 'em, Dad. We don't mind."
Jake was puzzled.
"Tell 'em we're boyfriends, Dad."
Jake nodded at Trevor and received nods in return from the boys. He turned to the detectives.
"Please do not put this in the report or anything, but the boys have given me permission to tell you that they are all gay and each pair is a couple. My son Trevor and his boyfriend Zach are the two sitting toward the end of the bed, and Jeremy and his boyfriend Jared are the two cuddled up together. As you can see, Zach and Jared are twins. They are Tom's sons. Jeremy wants them here, so they stay. If there is a problem, tell us now and the interview is over."
"Oookaaay, we can work with that. Did you say Trevor?"
He looked through his notes and looked at Trevor's bruised face.
"Good, we'll need to talk to you as well."
The detective nodded and both of them took a seat in the chairs, and Detective Graham directed a smile to Jeremy.
"Jeremy, my name is Bob and this is Jay; you can call us that, okay?"
"Oka... y, yes sir."
"Just try to relax. I know this is going to be hard, but we really need your help."
"Okay, I'll do my best."
"Fine, that's all I ask. Okay, can you tell me about what happened?"
Jeremy swallowed a couple of times, but with the encouragement of his friends he launched into his account of what had happened. They asked him to clarify a few things and then asked Trevor some questions as well, and Jake interjected some stuff, including his theory about Roger possibly having been Sandy's assailant. When they were satisfied, Bob closed his notebook.
"I think that's about it for now. Thank you all for your help. We got the toxicology report and it looks like this Roger used something like a mixture of chloroform and poppers. You know what those are, Jake?"
"Yeah, I know they have been big in the club scene for quite a long time."
"We think this is what knocked the boys out."
"Makes sense. So where do we go from here?"
"Well, we checked around the house for any pictures of Smith and found nothing. Have your families ever done anything together where there might have been pictures? The description is pretty average, black hair, brown eyes, around 5'10" to 6', average weight. Pretty average guy, allows him to blend in, since there are a few million with the same description."
"I don't know. We had a party for Trevor's birthday at my house back in November that he attended; maybe we got him on some photos. Sandy and I'll look when we get home."
"Great, I hope so. If not, I'd like to have you boys sit with a sketch artist so we can get a good likeness. We have an APB on the car, a late model Mustang, is it?"
"Well, maybe we'll find that and be able to connect him to it. Anyway, thanks again, and Jeremy, I am so sorry for your loss, son. We'll find him, and with all the help you've given us, he won't ever be able to do something like this again."
Jeremy nodded as they left. The other adults returned about that time. Sandy handed Jake an ice tea and gave sodas to the boys. The adults moved their chairs away from the boys and talked quietly while the boys huddled together. Jeremy shifted a little and screwed his face up in pain.
"What's wrong, babe."
"Jared, it hurts down... there."
"I know, love, I know."
Jared looked behind the huddle of boys towards the adults, and they seemed to be giving the boys some space and did not appear to be paying attention to them. He then looked at Trevor.
"Trevor, could you please try to do something for Jeremy?"
Trevor and Zach looked around and saw that the adults were busy with their conversation, so they turned back to the other two boys and nodded to each other. Jeremy looked back and forth between the others with a puzzled look.
"What are you guys talking about? What do want Trevor to do?"
"Jer, this is... uh... going to sound really strange, but trust us... it's real. When Zach was hurt, Trevor did... something to him. I saw it, but no one else did. He kinda... healed him a little. Remember how bad he looked when we got to him, but he didn't look too bad by the time he got out, and it was just in a few days."
"Yeah, I thought he was going to die when we found him."
"Well, he was in real bad shape and I think he could have died. Anyway, Trevor and I spent some time alone with him while our parents waited outside and Zach was unconscious; the doctor had said he might be in a coma. Trevor was pretty upset and he kind of laid on him and hugged him, and this is the weird part, I saw a faint glow coming from Trevor that spread around both him and Zach for a few moments, and then it went away when Zach moved his arm to hug Trevor and woke up. Suddenly Zach was awake and within a couple of days, he was pretty well healed up. I think Trevor actually started healing him in that restroom at school when we first found Zach, but everything was so nuts that no one noticed it. I've been thinking about it a lot, and I think that if Trevor had not done that, Zach might've died right there. Remember how his eyes rolled back and it looked like he stopped breathing? I think Trevor's ability started working on him right then and saved his life."
"Yeah, please keep this to yourself, Jer, but remember I told you about Zach's roommate with leukemia. Well, he looked real bad the first day that Zach was there. Trevor went over to him and talked to him. He held his hand as he did. The next time Trevor came to visit, I think it was the next day, he looked a hundred percent better, and a few days later when we went to visit him after Zach had gone home, he was in complete remission, healed and looked like any other healthy boy except for being bald. So I think that Trevor healed him too."
"You can heal anybody anytime?'
"No. We did a test and it didn't work."
"What kind of test?"
"Jared scratched his hand and I tried to heal the scratch, but nothing happened."
"So I was thinking, maybe because it's you, Jer, and you were hurt kinda bad, that maybe Trevor could try again, and maybe it will work. If it doesn't, you won't be any worse off, but if it does, then maybe we can get you out of here sooner. We were thinking that maybe as he gets older, it will be easier for Trevor to do this, but you know practice makes perfect."
"Oookaaay. You're right, and this is kinda scary, but if it works, I'm all for it. Okay, Trevor, give it a try."
Jeremy held out his hand and Trevor took it gently. He held it with both of his hands. He sat there and concentrated. He closed his eyes and screwed up his face as he concentrated. He let out a breath and shook his head. He looked at Jeremy with a disappointed face.
"Nothing. I didn't feel anything."
"Me either, it still hurts."
"Wait, the first time, you were hugging Zach, Trev. Maybe that's what you need to do."
"Okay, I'll try."
Trevor leaned forward and put his arms around Jeremy. The movement caught Jake's attention and he looked over at the boys. He saw Trevor hugging Jeremy and smiled before he turned back to the other adults. Trevor and Jeremy stayed like that for a few minutes, but nothing seemed to happen. They reluctantly let go.
"Fuck. I know it will work somehow."
"Wa... wait a minute. I got an idea. Now trust me, I don't know if this will work, but maybe... . I, uh need to touch him... down there."
You could almost hear the nervous gulp as Jeremy digested that. Jared was looking thoughtful and then nodded.
"Yeah, maybe. I guess. Do you want him to, Jer?"
"I don't know, I mean, I guess, but it's going to feel real weird, him touching me down there."
"You? I think it's going to feel a little weird too. I mean I don't mind touching Zach that way, but he's my boyfriend, but you're one of my best friends, so I'll do anything I can for you, if you want me to, that is."
"Oh... okay, let's try."
Trevor nodded. Jeremy pushed the blanket down to the middle of his thighs. Trevor gave him a nervous smile and put his hand on Jeremy's pelvis right above his penis and closed his eyes, concentrating. The three boys watched him and waited to see if the glow started. He put his other hand next to the first one and continued to concentrate. Nothing happened. He started to sit back and then thought of something else. He moved his hands to the bottom of the gown and looked at Jeremy for permission. Jeremy blushed and nodded. Trevor smiled at him and turned a bit red himself. He moved the gown up until he uncovered Jeremy's pelvis. Trevor smiled again and blushed, still a little embarrassed. Jeremy blushed and turned his head against Jared's neck to hide his face. Trevor placed a hand in the same position as before and took his other hand and moved it between Jeremy's legs and eased it against his butt. He could feel the bandage that was there from the surgery. He placed his hand over the bandage and gave gentle pressure over each position as he closed his eyes once again. He took a deep breath and reached inside himself for all the love he had for Jeremy and his friends and family. Slowly he felt warmth in his hands. Jeremy and the twins watched Trevor; their eyes slowly widened as they saw a faint glow start to come from Trevor, and their mouths dropped open. Trevor opened his eyes and his bright blue eyes had changed to a bright glowing blue. He seemed to be staring down at Jeremy as if he was looking inside. Zach remembered seeing these same glowing eyes before at the assembly when he and Trevor had been facing each other touching foreheads and looking into each other's eyes. Jeremy started to feel something, and he pulled his head away from Jared and his eyes opened wide. They saw the glow cover Jeremy's pelvis, and suddenly Jeremy's eyes and mouth opened wide and he started to whimper a little. Several things happened at once. Jared put his hand over Jeremy's mouth to keep the noise down, Jeremy got rock hard in a second and he started to get flushed, and the glow brightened a little as Zach instinctively put his arm around Trevor, like he was lending him strength. After a few moments, Trevor then took his hands away and Jeremy took some deep breaths as the glow faded. Over with the adults, Jake looked over and he rubbed his eyes, and then looked again as he saw a faint glow disappear from around Trevor. He could see Jeremy's naked lower half as Trevor removed his hands from Jeremy and sat back.
"Huh, what... sorry, blanked out for a second there. What did you say?'
"I said, why don't we go out to dinner this evening, all of us."
"Yeah sure, sounds good."
The others turned back to the conversation as Jake looked back over at the boys. He saw Jeremy push his gown back down. Jake shook his head and closed his eyes.
'What the heck was that? I could have sworn I saw a glow coming from Trevor and Jeremy. It's probably just a combination of stress and the lights shining in.
He turned back to the adult conversation as they discussed where to go eat.
The boys were looking at Trevor with awe.
"Did it work? I saw you glow a little, Trevor, and then Jeremy started making a noise and he got hard, like in a split second."
"Oh, shit, I couldn't help it; I felt everything get warm and then it felt like, I don't know, but it was kinda like when me and Jared are messin' around, you know, touching each other and stuff, and I could feel Trevor's love for me and all of a sudden it was warm and... wow!"
"But do you feel better? Does it hurt?"
Jeremy concentrated a little and wiggled around in the bed. He started to smile as he looked at Trevor and then the others. When he spoke, his voice was kind of breathy with a little awe as he looked at Trevor.
"Nothing. It doesn't hurt at all. I feel like everything is fine. Even some of my bad feelings about what Roger did to me are kinda fading too. I mean. it doesn't bother me as much. I still miss my mom a lot, but it's like I can handle it better now."
"Cool. Damn, Trev, that was really cool. There was a glow coming from you and your eyes were glowing bright blue, and then it covered Jeremy's hips and then it faded away. And Jeremy, your dick was glowing."
Jeremy blushed and punched Jared lightly in the stomach.
"Wow, now your face is glowing. I wonder if you dick is glowing again, only red this time."
Jared started to reach for the bottom of the gown to investigate and Jeremy slapped his hand away.
"Awwww. I bet it is and it's cute."
"Shhh! Any more cracks and you better get acquainted with your hand."
"I'll be as good as gold."
Jeremy looked at Jared and smiled. He then leaned close and kissed him. When he sat back Jared was smiling.
"I'll be better than gold, with that kind of payment, platinum in fact."
All of the boys giggled. Zach leaned against Trevor as they put their arms around each other. He closed his eyes for a moment; he was feeling a little tired. They looked back as the adults got up from the chairs and came over to the bed. Trevor noticed a strange kind of look that Jake directed towards him and then he smiled, but shrugged it off as Jake just being worried. Jake then turned his attention to Jeremy, and the first thing he noticed was that Jeremy's face didn't look as bruised as had a short time ago. He looked better and he was even smiling in the embrace of his boyfriend. Jake shook his head as if to clear it and looked again.
'I guess the sunlight is washing the bruises out a bit. It was probably because it was so dark in here earlier. But he seems almost happy. I can see the sadness in his eyes, but it looks like he's going to be okay. Well, they say that kids can bounce back quickly if they have the right support, and I can guarantee he will have plenty.'
The adults crowded around the boys and let them know about their plans to go out for dinner that evening. Jeremy started to pout a little. The door to the room opened suddenly behind them and they turned around as a doctor entered the room. He looked up and seemed a little startled by the number of people in the room. He took in the sight of the four boys on the bed and Jeremy cuddled up to Jared. Trevor and Zach held hands and had their arms around each other. He was surprised at this a bit, but recovered quickly.
"Good Afternoon, everyone. I'm Dr. Guy Terras. I'm Jeremy's doctor here and I wanted to come in and see how he's doing and check everything out. Could I ask everyone to step outside for a few minutes, while I do my examination?"
"Of course, doc, we'll get out of your way. C'mon, guys, we'll wait outside; it won't be long. We can talk about where we want to go eat."
The boys got off the bed; Jared gave Jeremy one last hug. The adults waited to usher the boys out of the room. Jeremy's voice stopped them.
"No, wait. Sir, could I have someone with me?"
"Well, I guess that's okay, but I'm going to be checking out the surgery area and it could be kind of embarrassing to you."
"I want Jared and Jake to stay, if that's okay, please?"
"Okay, if you want them to stay, then that's fine."
He turned to the group. Jared and Jake moved over to stand by Jeremy. Jared stood on the side of the bed away from the doctor and Jeremy reached out his hand, which Jared gladly took. Jake stood at the end of the bed. The rest of the group filed out. Dr. Terras turned back to Jeremy with a smile.
"Okay, Jeremy, last chance, they can wait nearby if you want. I'll just pull the curtain."
"No sir. I don't care, I'm ready."
"All right if you... wait, what happened to your IV?"
"Oh... uh... sorry sir; I kinda pulled it out accidentally."
"He was... a little upset, Dr. Terras, when he found out about his mother, and he started thrashing around a bit before I could get him calmed down. We just stopped the bleeding and turned it off, so it wouldn't drip on the floor."
He looked at Jeremy.
"Well from the outside he looks fine, so I guess we won't worry about it right now. Do you have any pain, Jeremy?"
"No sir. I feel pretty good right now. In fact I'd like to get out of here. I feel all cooped up; I want to get up."
"Now, now, don't go rushing things. You were torn up a little bit and we had to put some things back together."
Jeremy blushed at that; Jared squeezed his hand, which got a grin from Jeremy. Jake smiled his reassurance and leaned over to pat his foot. Jared looked at him gratefully.
"Okay, Jeremy, please turn on your side and face away from me."
Jeremy turned and took both of Jared's hands. Jared brought himself down to Jeremy's level and smiled at him. The doctor pulled the blanket and sheet down and opened the back of Jeremy's gown. Jake could see the bandage as he uncovered Jeremy. The doctor carefully pulled the bandage and tape away, causing Jeremy to wince a bit as the tape pulled on his tender skin. The area was quickly uncovered.
"Everything okay so far?"
"Yes, sir. It's just kind of embarrassing. I'm not used to someone seeing my bare butt."
"I understand. I'm going to take a look at everything and make sure it's healing properly, okay?"
The doctor put on some gloves from a nearby cabinet and carefully pulled Jeremy's cheeks apart and looked. He frowned and pulled a small light out of his pocket. He turned it on and pointed it at Jeremy's butt. He frowned some more, and touched Jeremy around his sphincter, causing Jeremy to giggle a little and squirm. He turned off the light and looked at the bandage closely and shook his head.
"Jeremy, this will feel a little uncomfortable, but I have to put my finger inside of you, to check the inside, okay?"
"Don't worry, I'll be careful and do my best not to hurt you."
The doctor went over to a cabinet and took some gloves, a piece of gauze and a small foil packet. He opened the packet and squeezed out some KY jelly onto the gauze. He put the gloves on and coated his finger in the KY. He then rubbed some of it onto Jeremy's sphincter.
"Jeremy, try to relax down there and push out a little; let me know if it hurts."
Jeremy concentrated a little and the doctor eased his finger inside. Jeremy clamped down at the intrusion and the doctor stopped moving.
"Try to relax a bit more, and when you're ready push out again."
"I'll try, it just feels weird."
"I know, we're almost done. When you're ready."
The doctor waited and Jeremy concentrated. When the doctor felt him relax, he gently pushed in farther and started feeling around.
"Did that hurt?"
"No, just feels weird."
Jeremy looked at Jared and smiled; his eyes were half closed. The doctor continued his exam and suddenly Jeremy's eyes shot open and he glanced down at his gown, drawing Jared's eyes to follow where he was looking. He jumped again.
"Sorry, Jeremy. Are you okay? Did I hurt you?"
"Yeah, I'm okay... but what did you just do?'
"Oh." The doctor chuckled. "Sorry, I just touched your prostate. Did it hurt?"
"No, no, it didn't hurt."
Jeremy mouthed to Jared "WOW!" His eyes went wide. Jared grinned at the look on Jeremy's face. They could both see the tent in the front of Jeremy's gown, as could Jake. Jake covered his mouth and looked away for a moment to control his laughing. The doctor continued his exam and his face took on a puzzled look. He pulled his finger out and stood up. He closed Jeremy's gown back up after taking off the gloves and throwing them away.
"Okay Jeremy, you can turn back."
Jeremy turned back and looked at the doctor.
"So is that it?"
"No, I need to go get a piece of equipment. I'll be right back. Just wait here a moment?'
The doctor went to a phone on the wall and dialed a number.
"Hi Carol, this is Dr. Terras. Can you bring a scope to 320 in Millers? Good, yeah, the small one... thanks."
He hung up and turned back.
"If you don't mind, I'm having a scope brought up to take a look inside."
"Why, what's wrong?"
"Nothing. Anyway, nothing's wrong, I just want to make sure the stitches inside are fine and the healing looks good. It should be here in a few moments."
Outside the group saw a nurse walk down the hall with a black case and go into the room. The three in the room heard the door open and looked as the nurse entered.
"Here it is, doctor."
"Do you need any help?"
"No, that's fine, thanks again."
She nodded and smiled to everyone as she left. The outside group shrugged as she walked back out without the case. Inside the room, the doctor put the case on a nearby stand and opened it. He took a long black tube with what looks like an eyepiece at one end and laid it on the bed. Then he went back to the cabinet where he got a larger packet of KY jelly. Jeremy looked at the scope on the bed and then back at the doctor.
"Is... is all of that going inside me? I thought you said the small one on the phone?"
His voice ended in a squeak, accompanied by widened eyes. The doctor started to laugh.
"Sorry, Jeremy, but no, just a little bit. I meant small in circumference, you know, around."
"Oh... uh, okay."
The doctor finished his preparations and motioned to Jeremy.
"Okay, roll up on your side again."
Jeremy rolled over and the doctor opened up his gown again. He put the tip of the scope in the KY and then brought it to Jeremy's sphincter.
"Jeremy, just like you did before, relax and push out again, when you feel the tube against you. This will be a little easier since it is not as big around as my finger."
He placed the scope and flipped a switch. Jake saw a light come on at the end. The doctor waited and then slipped the scope in easily. He put his head down to the eyepiece and started moving the flexible tube around. The doctor concentrated on what he was doing. After a minute or so, he gently pulled the scope out and looked puzzled.
"Is everything okay, doc?"
"You can clean up and turn back over, Jeremy. Yeah... uh, yes, it is. In fact, it is more than okay. Everything looks great, in fact, Jeremy, how would you like to go home today?"
Jeremy looked up at the doctor hopefully, looking back and forth between Jared and the doctor, smiling.
"You mean it? I can leave?"
"Yes. If you want. I see no reason to keep you here."
"Then I guess that's a yes. Very well, let me go get some paperwork filled out and you can leave."
Jared helped Jeremy clean up as Jake made his way over to Jeremy's side as the doctor packed everything up. He reached down and smoothed Jeremy's hair back.
"Well, I guess we'll have to let you come to dinner with us."
Jeremy stuck his tongue out at Jake. Jake laughed and ruffled his hair. He followed the doctor and motioned for everyone to come back in the room. Jeremy was sitting up and could hardly wait to tell everyone.
"Guess what? I get to leave. The doctor's filling some paperwork out so that I can get out of here."
The group congratulated him as Jake slipped out the door. He let the deputy know what was going on.
"That's great. I'll radio it in."
"Good, let Alex know that I'm going to take care of watching the boys, so you guys can concentrate on catching the son of a bitch. I'll have some of my security guys watching over them."
"Will do. Good luck."
They shook hands as the deputy walked away. Jake spied the doctor standing at a counter nearby writing in a chart. He walked over.
"Excuse me, Dr. Terras?"
The doctor looked up, then finished what he was writing and closed the chart.
"I couldn't help but notice that you had kind of a puzzled look on your face."
"Oh yes, that, um, well, during the examination I was surprised by how well he was healing."
"I was the one who found him and I saw a lot of blood, so what did you have to do?"
"Well, we had to repair some tearing around the outside, and there was some inside as well. So I closed everything up with stitches."
"So why the surprise?"
"This is one for the books. When I checked the outside area, I could find no evidence of the stitches that I put in yesterday. Now they are self dissolving, but there was nothing there, no trace. It was like a week or two of healing went by. No scar either. So I felt inside..."
"I thought he was going to jump out of the bed when you hit his prostate."
"Yeah." The doctor chuckled. "Me too. It can be pretty sensitive, especially at that age. Anyway, I felt around in the area where I put some stitches on the inside and could not feel them. So I sent for the scope to look inside and nothing, no trace. I could see a small scar, but other than that nothing. So since he looked pretty healthy, I saw no reason to keep him any longer. I take it you will be taking him home with you; I noticed that your name was listed as the responsible adult, you and a Sandy Garrity."
"Yes, my fiancée and I are taking care of him, for now at least."
"Well good luck with him; lucky for him he's a fast healer."
"Yeah, lucky. Thanks, doc."
The doctor walked over to a nurse and handed the chart as he gave her some instructions. She took the chart and nodded. Jake walked back to the room, muttering as he did.
"Lucky, my ass. That boy was seriously hurt. Something's going on here."
He walked back in the room and joined the others. He looked at the boys, particularly Trevor. Trevor felt like someone was staring at him. He looked around and saw Jake was studying him. He cocked an eyebrow in question. Jake smiled and shook his head, causing Trevor to shrug and turn back to talking with Jeremy. A nurse came in a few minutes later. She smiled as she made her way to the bedside.
"Well, young man. I guess you're getting sprung from this joint. I'm going to send an orderly with a wheelchair while you get dressed."
"Uh, I don't have any clothes here."
"Oh, I didn't know. We'll get you some pajama bottoms to go with the gown and you can wear those out of here."
"I'll be right back."
She turned to the adults.
"Who is Mr. MacLaren?'
"Okay, Mr. MacLaren, I have some forms here for you to sign. I'll take them when I get back."
She left and Jake started signing forms. She came back shortly with the pajama bottoms for Jeremy. He took them and under the covers of the bed, he slipped them on before throwing the covers back and sitting on the edge of the bed. Jared quickly sat down next to him and put his arm across his shoulders. The nurse collected the forms from Jake as the door opened for an orderly, who came in with the wheelchair.
"All right. Here is your ride."
"I'll go get the jeep and meet you outside."
The nurse left when Jake did. Jeremy got up and walked over to the wheelchair. Jared stayed at his side as they left the room and went down the hall. They went outside the front entrance of the hospital and waited. A few minutes later Jake drove up and Jared helped Jeremy get into the back seat. He then ran around to the other side and got in next to him.
"I guess we'll see you guys back at the house. Trevor, I guess you're riding with Zach."
"Not much choice the...."
"Ow, you didn't let me finish. I was going to ask to ride with you anyway?"
"You'll have to make it up to me."
"Ooo, can't wait."
"Jeesh, boys, TMI."
Everyone laughed as Jake drove off. Zach and Trevor followed Tom and Terry to the Suburban and got in. It didn't take long before they were home and everyone was safe.