Castle Roland

Life on the Farm

by Joe Writer Man

In Progress

Chapter 24

Posted: N/A

I went to my bedroom, grabbed my boots so that I'd be prepared to do chores after we'd eaten, tossed an extra pair of socks inside them, then headed downstairs.

Everybody was seated around the big dining room table, digging in, engaging in lively discussion, sharing this and that, passing the bowls and plates around the table, just like always. I dropped my boots next to my chair, sat down in my usual place, bowed my head to say grace, and thanked the God I didn't yet know for the bounties and blessings... Tears came to my eyes, but they only lasted briefly, as Thomas handed me a bowl of mashed potatoes. I looked into his eyes, grabbed the bowl, and thanked him... I so wanted to hug him, and did just that after putting the bowl back on the table. In his ear, I whispered, "Thank you."

Dinner was wonderful. Mom and Stacy started the parade of taking dishes to the kitchen. When Stacy returned, she handed me a snail mail envelope. The envelope was large and was addressed to me, or the 'old me' – James Edward Talley, in care of CPS.

The return address had Angela Tally, and was sent from a Prison for Women located in a neighboring state.

Eric hollered from the back door, "Come on, James. We're going swimming after chores!"

Mom came walking into the dining room to get some more things to put away. I looked up, sensing her presence. I guess... I didn't quite know what to think about why Angela Talley would write to me... she's no longer my mother; she only popped me out; just like a horse pops out its offspring... I was probably dropped in the grass, too. Mom walked over to see what the envelope was all about. I pointed to the return address. She put her arms around my waist, but didn't say anything. She didn't need to say anything... her presence, her arms around me was all I needed.

Thomas came walking down the stairs... his footsteps were unmistakable – clump, clump, clump, clunk, clunk, clunk... then they stopped.

I pulled out of Mom's arms, and said, "I've got chores to do." I laid the envelope on the table, walked to the ante room, pulled off my clean clothes, put the coveralls on, hiked up my boots, then took off outside and joined Luke and Eric as they headed toward the goat pen.

I got some superhuman strength, or something, because I walked up the stairs to the hay loft, pulled and pushed off an 80 pound hay bale, dropped it to the ground, then went back down the stairs, drug the heavy bale to the feed bin, reached for the snippers, grabbed them up and aimed their sharp teeth to the baling wire that held everything together. Luke took them from my hand. I looked up; ready to snarl, but the look on his face told me that he was only concerned. Eric dropped what he was doing and came over and asked, "What's up, James? You know, you can talk to us... we're full-fledged brothers, now."

I took the snippers from Luke, bent down to do the deed, snipped the wire loose, got the hay fork, and started filling the feeding trough. I'd tossed the 3rd forkful, then spat, feeling a sense of anger coming up from deep within, "I got a letter from That Woman. I mean what the fuck anyway... I haven't heard shit from her since I've been here. The bitch didn't even check on me when I was in the fucking hospital for 3 goddamned months, and she didn't give a fuck when I was there... so why is she getting all concerned, now? I don't get it. Wanna have a bonfire?" I wanted to do with that piece of paper.

Then I was confused. I wondered what kind of smack talk she had to say. Did she know her fuckmate for life was dead? She probably didn't even know that I was living here... she probably didn't know, or care, that I had a family who I loved and who loved me. How could she know? And why would she want to write to me, her accident, her mistake, her pain in the ass – kid.

Well, I'm finding out more, day by day, that 'that' life is not what it is today, in a very good way. I looked into Eric's eyes, and then Luke's. They were both looking back with deep concern. Their concern is what gave me a calming effect... I hadn't even realized that I was all tensed up and shit, until right then. "ot let that letter fuck up my day – I refused to do that so I handed Luke the pitchfork, then pulled him into a hug, held tightly, then did the same for Eric.

Eric said, "Are you serious about the bonfire, Dude? But then again, maybe you need to see what the letter says... otherwise you'll always wonder. Does Mom and Dad know?"

"Mom does. She saw the envelope."

"That's why we got parents. It's up to you what you do. We'll be here anyway." Then he got this sinister look in his eyes, like I hadn't seen for a very long time... before I could tear out, he had me on the ground, and both he and Luke pounced my ass, but well.

Mood broken.

It's funny how they know to do the right thing at the right time.

But then again, it was my turn to get pounded. Luke had his turn yesterday morning, and Eric's turn had been last week sometime... so whatever.

Wore out from the frolicking and rolling around on the ground, we lay there quietly just looking up into the clear blue sky... the sun had begun its trek down in the western sky. There were two jet contrails crisscrossing at 90 degree angles, right overhead... damn, those things were flying fast. They were way, way up there, almost a hundred miles up, for sure. Eric announced, "I want fly one of those fuckers some day... that would be so kewl. Ya okay, Bro?"

"Yeah, I'm good. Let's get our chores done so we can go swimming... you think Dad'll let us go after dark... that would be wicked?"

"Maybe, probably not, though. We could saddle up and go for a ride... whatya think about that?" Eric asked while standing up. He reached down his hand, grabbed hold and half-yanked and half-pulled Luke then me up so that we were standing in front of him.

"Fuck yeah... I'll ask Dad if it's okay. I'll be right back."

"Okay, we're heading to the barn. See ya there in a few."

Luke grabbed a big sack of feed for the feeding trough. Eric helped him while I finished scattering the hay. Luke looked at me, then sat down to receive loving from his goat family. He was getting into it, then Eric screamed... at the same time, I got butted hard by the male, sending me to the ground, with the wind knocked out of my lungs.

That shit happens. The fuckers. That thought doesn't much calm the panic one feels when their breath is knocked out. As soon as I got calmed down a bit, and saw that daddy goat was cornered by Eric, I started breathing again, got up. I had to stand there for just a moment to get my bearings back, and to let the shards of pain emanating from my body, pass.

They passed, but as I took a few steps toward the gate, my leg felt like it had a 'catch' in it. It wasn't getting any better; though the pain was dissipating the more I walked. "I'm going on to the barn... meet you there."

Dad was in the barn, in the stall, getting ready to release momma and its foal into the field. The stall was a mess, so I got the pitchfork and shovel from an adjacent stall. I asked, "Dad, can we go for a ride tonight?"

Dad looked surprise, then smiled, "Haven't you rode enough today, Boy?"

"Daddddddddd .... That's not what we mean... we mean the horses? Sheesh..."

"This is a conspiracy... who put you up to this?" Dad said, then clucked his tongue against the roof of his mouth.

"Dadd... we, can we, may we, please ride...?"

"Help me get this foal out of here and into the pasture. You boys can go riding for a while, but be back here by dark."

The horses were anxious to get out to open pasture. The little one followed its mother to some sweet grass where they got busy chomping away.

On our way back, with Dad's hand across my shoulder, I said slowly, almost in a whisper, "I got a letter from Angela, my mother."

He looked down. There was grave concern in his eyes. He slowly ran his hand up and rested it between my neck and shoulder, and rubbed it slowly, and said, "What did she tell you?"

"I haven't read it."

"Do you want to?"

"She don't care none about me. That's okay, though. I'm really your son. Dad, she can't come get me, can she?" I asked, suddenly very, very afraid, not knowing if she could or would.

"No, Son, she has no legal standing, none whatsoever. You are our son in every way. I want you to think about something... would you do this for me?"

"Sure. I'll do anything."

"James, I don't have any experience with being separated from my parents back when I was a young pup. So, I don't know what it's like from within myself. I see you and Eric... your Mom and I were talking on the way home tonight... we're very blessed, and oh so fortunate, too, I see you and your brother getting on with life. You guys are strong. I'm not sure that I would have handled things that have gone on in your lives very well... not like you two are. Luke is doing okay, too. The doctors have hope for him. Mark is getting the help he needs. Hopefully, he'll be home soon... we have hope. Here's what I think... I think you should read the letter. If you don't then you'll always wonder. Of course, you do not have to read it right now... you could wait until you're older. You'll probably see things different then... what I'm saying is that whatever you decide is just fine... we'll support you no matter what."

"Part of me just wants to slam shut that door... you know... the old doors... to my old life... and just get on doing things, living... Dad, I love it here, and I love you and Mom so much. I've never had it this good... sometimes I think I'll just wake up..."

Once again, the seriousness of the moment -disappeared-... Dad picked me up and threw me over his shoulder. Of course, I was raising hell, demanding that he let me down... but ya know what? I didn't want to be let down... he'd threw me over his shoulders earlier today, and got me away from what had happened... I had no reason to be afraid, "Dad, I'm going to thrash you if you apologize one more time for what happened today... you saved my life today... there is no doubt that he was going to hurt me. Actually he would have killed me. The devil was in his eyes... I saw it! Dad, do you believe in the devil?"

"No, not really. The devil is an imaginary creature that some people use as a weapon on other people. Evil is a profound lack of love, James. Sometimes people are just plain out insane. I have no doubt that your birth father was insane. I saw the look in his eyes, too, Son. Seeing that level of rage was a shock to the system. How are you?"

Just then Eric and Luke came running into the barn and up to us. Both of my brothers looked at me... they were asking the question, "Did I ask if we could ride?" I grinned. That was all she wrote.

Dad helped us saddle up our horses, and after receiving strict orders to not go swimming and be back by dark, we were off. I'd never galloped Coltrane. He hesitated and looked back to see we were to follow Eric and Luke tearing across the field. I patted his neck, sat up securely in the saddle, gave him a swift kick in the side, bounced the reins and hollered "Giddyupppppppppp!"

I was stoked! The wind was rushing up through the holes in my shirt sleeves where my arm comes together with my chest, and my hair was blowing wildly in the wind, I was bump butting in the saddle like crazy... not all that great a feeling since that damn goat butted me but good... Not only did we catch up with Eric and Luke, but, like a speeding bullet we passed them in the dust. I slowed him down using the usual methods. Coltrane was very acutely aware of his surroundings, and paid attention to my calls for him to come to a stop. He did so, then neighed as Eric and Luke came bounding up to us. I slipped out of the saddle, hugged Coltrane's neck, telling him over and over again that that was total and complete STOKE!

The horses were thirsty, they had to be. The portion of the creek where Rocky had hung out in bad times was just across the tree line, so we walked our beasts (heh heh) to the water so that they could drink. Rocky wasn't there. I wish he was. I figured I'd catch him tomorrow... I'd make a point to go find him. Then, I got to thinking about how I missed him... I hadn't really felt that way with Seth... sure I wanted to be with him... we were really good friends... and I'm glad to know that we would remain friends, just not like before. What does 'different' mean? A shiver ran up and down my spine thinking about how he likes to be tied up and dominated. No thanks, not my cuppa tea, but, hey, if Seth's happy then who am I to say anything negative or derogatory about his preferences... I'm just glad he's happy.

"Earth to James!" Eric hollered. I guess I had zoned out cuz when I looked up, he and Luke were stripping.

I hollered back, "Dad doesn't want us to go swimming!"

"We're not. We're going to hunt down some frogs – YUMMY!"

Oh, okay, that's a different story. I love the way mom fries those critters up in bacon grease, using plenty of seasonings, and then battered up to perfection. Hell yeah!

The frogs were pretty dumb. Soon, Eric had 6, Luke had 4 and I had 3. We put them in a saddlebag, then went and rinsed off the piss or whatever it is their bodies give off to keep them slick so that they are not easy prey... usually... but when you have 3 dudes who love fried frog for dinner – watch out!

By the time we got back to the barn, it was very close to being dark. Dad and Thomas were working on the tractor. They were putting on the mower. We were quick to pull out the frogs, showed them to Dad and Thomas. Dad took them, and said that he'd gas them later when they got finished with what they were doing.

It wasn't pretty... but we pulled the saddles off, wiped them down and put them near the hooks that they hung on when they weren't in use, then we got busy brushing down the horses. They were hot and sweaty, to the max. Coltrane interrupted a number of times by turning his head around, bumping into me, and slobbering my chest and neck like crazy... YUCK! But I loved it, too. And, I loved my horse. And he loved me.

The last thing to do was to head them out to pasture for the night. They went voluntarily and wandered off into the darkness.

The only thing left to do was to clean out the stall that had been vacated earlier in the day. With the three of us all working together, we got it done in short order. Luke pointed to his butt, let out a fart to be proud of, then tore off in the direction of the house.

Thomas was driving the tractor out of the bay. The mower was hooked up. When he got outside, he kicked the blades in. That certainly blew dirt, gravel and bits and pieces of this and that around all over the place. I went into a crazy sneezing fit. I think I sneezed something like 15 times before they ended, leaving me breathless and my eyes burning. Tears, not the sad or happy kind, were freely flowing in all directions. Erick, obviously the smart one of the two of us, took off for the loft, effortlessly climbed up and disappeared, saying he'd be right back. He was. He took my arm in his hand and led us outside by the machine shed. He reached into his pocket and pulled out the pack of cigarettes, saying, "Don't let Dad catch us... but I really need one right about now."

Who am I to argue?

We stood at the back of the shed, smoking, and talking about this and that, nothing really important, yet it was important to us, at the time.

Can't fool ole dad, though. He came around the corner – just as I was taking a deep inhalation, just as Eric was blowing a smoke ring. Of course, we stood there like a deer in a pair of headlights – we'd been busted.

"I oughta thrash the both of you. But, you already know the hazards so I won't, unless your Ma catches ya. Be careful about where you put them out... can't have no fires."

I said, "Uhm, Dad, Mom knows I smoke... she caught me at the courthouse... after... when I was out with Adam..."

Dad gave me the eye, and said, "So... that's where you went..."

"Dad, it's not like you're thinking... we did not go out to 'smoke'. We went out to talk about the decision I had to make. Adam lit one up. I took a cigarette from him and smoked it. We had another one; that's when Mom saw me. She wasn't mad, Sir. Honest."

He replied, "Just don't make it a habit. You don't need for me to give you all the warnings and stuff... just be discreet. I was a Boy, once upon a time."

"Yes, Sir. Thank you, Sir." I said, automatically. Eric repeated the sentiments, with the utmost respect. Dad took off, saying he was heading to the house, and for us to get our butts up there, too.

Speaking of butts, we dunked them (the cigarettes!) into the horse water trough, took off for the house, telling ghost stories that were scaring the shit out of ourselves... such as big ole rattlers ready to crawl up our legs, a skunk quietly sneaking up and spraying its juices all over us, not to forget to mention coyotes, werewolves, and the like. By the time we entered the house... our minds were going 90 to nothing. Stripping in the ante room took no time whatsoever, not with all those critters, creatures and slinky things on the doorstep just waiting to be allowed in...

Dad was just coming down the stairs. His hair was wet and all slicked back. He said, seriously, "You got the last chore taken care of, correct?"

"Yes, Sir. It's all taken care of." Eric said. I nodded, seriously agreeing with each and every word Eric said decisively... Eric's a wise one, for sure.

Mom called my name from the living room. I was seriously pudged up, the obvious was obvious, so I walked to the corner, peered my head around it, making sure my front side was out of full view. Stacy snickered, "Got a problem there?"

I stuck my tongue out at her, then turned to Mom, "Yes, Ma'am?"

"You have doctor's appointments tomorrow morning. We'll be there at 9. Get to bed and get to sleep, don't mess around. I'll see you in the morning... run on, now."

"Yes, Ma'am. Mom, Dad, thanks for everything today. I love you."

"Night, Mom. Love you, too." Eric acknowledged while hooking his thumb in my underwear and yanking them half off my butt. Then he took off up the stairs and turned right, while I pulled them back up to cover the essentials. Dad snickered. His chair was in the line of sight. Thankfully, Mom's vision was obscured by the wall.

I headed up the stairs, much slower than Eric had gone... of course, I hadn't done what he had done. I opened the bathroom door and went inside. Eric was sitting on the pooper wearing a big ole grin on his face. I replied happily, "Paybacks are a bitch... you just wait and see."

"Like I'm petrified – gah! Close the door, you idiot." Eric was saying as I headed back down the hallway to my room for some clean clothes, while he sat to be seen by anybody who happened to be walking in that direction. I smiled.

I grabbed clean undies and a pair of shorts. I wanted to go down and hug Mom before going to bed, then slowly sauntered back to the bathroom. Eric stood up just as I was entering. His fully erect rod was proudly waving out in front. I entered, closed the door and took his place while he started the bath water, then he got in, took his dick in his hand, started lazily stroking it, all the while looking at me with a curious expression on his face. I finished up, wiped and flushed, then got into the tub after he made way for me.

The way we were laying was that he was facing sideways, so I slid in and wrapped my legs around his waist, then snuggled down so that my butt was touching his hips. I needed to stretch out in the hot water... my leg was killing me, and so was my butt. I took hold of my fully erect organ and began the age-old ritual of masturbation, not too hard, not too soft... Eric said, "Sleep with me tonight... if you want to... I mean... well, you know... it's your choice, of course."

"No prob. Actually, I just want to soak for a while. I'm pretty sore."

"Yeah, I noticed. You're limping like crazy."


"Yeah, really. I sure hope they find out what's the matter. Oh, Rocky called earlier today... sorry, I forgot to tell you earlier. I think he just wanted to talk to you... he wouldn't tell me what about. Uhm, well... did you get to talk to Seth today?"

"Yip. We're good."

"Is he still your boyfriend? Nevermind... you don't have to answer..."

"It's okay. No. We're not boyfriends anymore... we're just good friends. He's got another boyfriend... it's all good. He's happy. So am I."

"Are you going to hook up with Rocky? He's a kewl dude... aren't you glad I introduced you two? I mean, well, that don't sound right... the circumstances were bad... forget I ever asked that question."

I had to snicker, then I had to flick his ear with my thumb and forefinger. He pulled back, but not soon enough... I got him but good. He smiled and let it go, then got busy washing his body, as did I. We moved around so that he could wash his hair under the faucet. I soaped up a washcloth and washed his back and butt. I paid particular attention to that which was staring me in the eyes. I decided to test the waters a little more... instead of washing the area around his hole with a washcloth, I used my hands and let my thumbs trail through his valley of darkness, opening his cheeks and pulling them aside so that I could (and did) get a full on view of what which brings me pleasure... I wondered if he would mind... he wasn't turning around to stop me... so, not receiving any negative feedback, I replaced my thumb with my index finger, pressed on his backdoor and broke the plane. Instead of pushing me away, like I initially thought he was doing... I realized he was pushing his butt back toward me, not away.

Okay, I'll admit it. By that time I was crazed with lust... pure and simple... no doubt about it.

Softly, I put my left hand on his lower back, thus permitting his butt-cheeks to close, and then began rubbing his back door with my finger in little circular motions, and felt it relax bit by bit, and then I put more pressure right in the middle... I definitely broke the plane of resistance... and then, in one fluid motion was inside to the hilt, with very little muscle spasm. Eric looked back and into my eyes, despite the water running down his face, and then said, very quietly, "That feels good. I didn't think it would. I really didn't. You can take it out now. I just wanted to see what it felt like."

Because we weren't using any lube, I very slowly withdrew my finger from his orifice so as to not irritate those tender tissues. After kissing his left cheek, I rewashed his 'hole' area, and then we changed places.

Just before I put my head under the faucet, Eric asked, hesitatingly, "Can I do it to you?"

"Go slow, I'm really sore down there. Use some of the hand lotion, please."

Eric was getting up to grab the bottle as I stuck my head under the faucet. Soon, very soon, he was back in the tub, doing the same massage thing that I'd done for him, and then, his hands were zeroing in my usually high erogenous zone. With full use of the lotion, he easily entered into my hidden valley, then worked his finger toward the bulls-eyes. Though it stung like crazy, I relaxed to permit him easy entry. It had been quite some time since I had anything going 'up' there, so I was a bit tight, but, like I said, I quickly relaxed. Once he got past the ring of fire, I urged him on in by pushing my butt toward his hand. Soon, I was fully impaled... and loving the hell out of it. Soon, too soon, he withdrew, a little too fast... stung like hell, then he exclaimed, "James, you're bleeding... what am I supposed to do, now? I'm sorry. God, I'm sorry... I didn't mean to hurt you!"

"Relax, Eric. I'm just irritated down there. It's no big deal. I'm going to the doctor tomorrow, you heard Mom. Just wash me; I'm just about done up here."

I got dressed while Eric tore down the hall wearing only a frown... he really was upset, thinking that he'd hurt me, despite my assurances that I liked his ministrations to my most private of places. Seriously, his finger felt really good despite a bit of sting. I hugged both Mom and Dad, and, once again, thanked them for everything. Mom shooed me off to bed. I took Kevin from Dad's lap. He crawled onto my chest and buried his head in my neck, and off we went. I was afraid as all hell that I'd drop my little brother on the way up, so, at the base of the stairs, I had him get down and walk up with me by his side. I then took him to his room, got him all undressed and put into jammies, kissed him good night, then headed into Eric's room, closed the door and got into bed beside him.

We were both tired as hell, so we didn't waste time talking. I pulled off my shorts and underwear, tossed them to the floor, and when I was turned away, Eric grabbed hold of my tool and began working it, massaging it, much to my delight. I was horny as hell. I knew I wouldn't last long with him jacking me like a pro... not too fast... not too slow... I rolled back and put my head on the pillow that we shared when I slept in his room... to say that I was enjoying being masturbated would be an understatement.

By the time I realized, a passing fleeting thought, that I should be returning the gestures, I was already blasting off into the next world. Upon return, Eric was busily working his tool to go to, to experience, and to return from a distant planet, yet unnamed, far, far away... however, I pushed his hand aside, then, without hesitation – went down on his hard male gland, engulfing it in one fell swoop. I may be a dumb-ass in many ways, but I can suck a dick. At the same time, unknown to Eric, I scooped up some slobber with my finger and worked its way into his anal orifice. He didn't miss a lick; in fact, I thought he was going to squeeze it right off my hand when he took off into orbit. Well, not really, not literally anyway. When his spasms died away, using my teeth I gently scraped them across his sensitive penis, causing him to violently jerk as three aftershocks shook his body. Then I rested, stayed still, and experienced his penis deflates to the point of where it was just a nubbin. He was asleep in a matter of seconds, right after I slowly, gently extracted my finger.

I pulled up the covers, laid down on the pillow we shared, and went to sleep while thinking of Rocky and how I so wanted to bring him pleasure in every way.

My chores were finished by 5:30. Instead of having breakfast at my home, I went over to Rocky's. I thought he was going to have a stroke when I slowly, carefully, stealthily walked up behind him and wrapped my arms around his back then his chest. Also unknown to him, I had stood at the door of their barn, just peering in and watching him work. Once his fright went away, I lowered my hands along his bare stomach and sent them down south. I worked my fingers beneath the waistband of his Fruit of the Looms, heading south to the Promised Land, but he grabbed my hand and pulled it away just as I was about to grasp hold of his non-erect evidence of maleness.

That caught me off-guard. I didn't know what to think. He said, "Not now. Not until we talk. Hand me the pitch fork." His voice was direct, to the point, and had a trace of iciness to it. I had not a clue – why.

"What's the matter?" I asked, while picking up the pitchfork and scattering hay across the floor.

"You didn't call me last night." He replied, not even looking up from the lamb he was getting ready to sheer. He then turned on the clippers, sending out loud metal on metal sounds, and then he applied the sheers to the lamb, running from near its tail to the middle of its back before flipping the hair aside into a sack and repeating the motions. The lamb got a bit frisky so I went up front and held its head. That earned me a lick across the face – yuck, and I thought Coltrane was bad.

"My ex-dad tried to kill me yesterday. He's dead. My friend, Tony, Seth's father, accidentally killed him. And then I got adopted. And then we had chores. And then I slept with Eric. We messed around. I wished it was you. Your were my last thought before going to sleep. Yes, we need to talk, only if you want to, though."

The lamb was settled down, so I let go of its head, walked to the stairs leading to the loft, but Rocky stopped me, "They're on the work bench. Grab me one, too."

The first lamb was finished fairly quickly. It seemed to like being nearly hairless as it romped around and ran into the pen through the relatively small gate.

"One down, 11 to go. Your Dad is going to be here shortly. We're mowing hay today. It should be dried out in a day, maybe two, then it will be ready to be baled. Have you told them?"

"Told them what?" I replied. Rocky looked into my eyes incredulously. "Oh, that, yes I did. I have a doctor's appointment at 9."

"Good. James, what happened yesterday?" Rocky's expression quickly turned to concern.

I lit our cigarettes, handed him one, and took a deep drag off of mine, then said, "My stomach gets all upset and shit when I'm scared, so I went to the restroom, then headed into the canteen to get a package of crackers and a drink. The change dropped all over the damn place... he grabbed me by the hair and yanked me into the corridor... I knew he was going to kill me..."

"Who is 'he'?"

"My ex-dad..." Rocky's eyes narrowed to slits, his jaw set, his nostrils twitched, and took a deep breath... then he froze in that position, though he nodded for me to continue, but before I said anything, he added, "I thought he was in jail... like my Dad... forever..."

"They said he got out because of a clerical mistake..."

"Some mistake... so where is he?"

"He's dead. It was an accident, really. Tony had a knife at his throat... I flailed... Dad grabbed me... I kicked away... guards and police were rushing in... Honest, Rocky, I really didn't want him dead... I just wanted him out of my life forever."

"I'm sorry, James. I'm sorry for getting on your case. I should have known there would be a good explanation why you didn't call... are you okay?"

"I think so."

"You think so?"

"Yeah, I'm okay... the adoption got finalized... they're my Real Family, now. It's all good."

Rocky took me into his arms, hugged me tight. I gave in... His arms felt good, so good, in fact, that I didn't want us to part, but I did part and said, "I got a letter in the mail from my ex-mom..."

"What did it say?"

"Dunno. Haven't opened it. Dad says I have my whole life to think about it, you know – to decide if I'm going to."

"Maybe you ought to read it, get it over with. Nothing's going to change what you have now... knowing what it says could very well end your old life."

"Yeah, that's what everybody is saying..."

"There's no hurry." He then changed tactics, "So, your real name now is James Edward Richardson? It has a nice ring to it."

"Yup, I think so, too. So... what's your full name?"

"Richard Randolph McBride. I hate it. Everybody calls me Rocky. My Dad called me Dick. Mom only uses my real name when she'd trying to get my attention. She used it this morning. They wanted me to spend the day with them, but I have work to do. I can't let the town folk do all the work... I should, at least, be helping. I don't do hand-outs."

That snapped my head up. In fact, I dropped my cigarette into the straw – but quickly picked it up and stomped where it had landed, to make sure there was no flame. "I don't do hand-outs either. I don't take charity either... well... I mean, letting people do stuff for me... stuff that I can't do, or don't know how to do... I can't really explain it. Mom and Dad just say to let people do stuff, cuz they want to and it makes them feel good. I think I've figured it out – I like to do things for people just because I can... so I need to let them do things just because they can. Dad also says to pay their giving back by passing it on."

"It's hard."

"I know. I'm starting to see what Dad means. It's like I want to be here helping out, so I am, just because I can. I don't expect anything in return. Oh yeah, one more thing, the prosecutor was in the courtroom yesterday morning... they were going to arrest me, or something, cuz I stole a welfare check from my old parents... the judge dismissed the charge. He granted the petition after the shit happened... I don't remember much of what he said... I was sorta dazed and out of it."

"I can only imagine... I'm sorry that happened to you, James. I wish I would have been there."

"I'm glad you weren't. It was terrible... I mean... I wish you were there, but I'm glad you weren't... I hope this makes sense. Sorry."

"Is your friend going to face charges? You know for..."

"I don't think so. They didn't hold him or anything. There were gobs of people all over the place... the guards and cops were there in a split New York second... he wasn't arrested... besides he's a lawyer." I replied, then walked around; needing to stretch out my hip cuz it was starting to cramp up hard.



"Tell the doctor everything, don't hold back. Promise?" Rocky said, walking to me, then continued, "You don't have to promise me anything, just be honest so that you can get well."

I nodded. "Seth and I are no longer boyfriends. He's got a new boyfriend. I don't know everything about it... but they seem more... uhm, compatible."

"Compatible? What do you mean?"

"Compatible. Like... well... Seth has found out that he's into leather, ropes, pain and shit. I don't mean 'shit' shit, I mean stuff... I don't think he's into shit. Shit... this ain't making any sense."

"You mean you didn't know... or Seth didn't tell you... or he didn't act like..."

"No... I mean, well, most of the time Seth was pretty aggressive... he'd take control... but he never hurt me or anything like that."

"Okay. I'm not like that, James. I don't know what I'm like... you know... like that... when I think of us... I mean when I think of being with somebody... I think of us as together... as equals."

"Us? As in -us-... As in you and me? Really? Wow, okay, I mean, it's great... but I didn't think you'd want me... I've had lots of sex, Rocky..." I took in a deep breath, thought for a minute, wondering if I should say, "There was this boy I met on the beach..."

Rocky's eyes narrowed into little slits, then he opened them, started to open his mouth to say something, but then held back. I needed to be open; I felt it was now or never. I'd never really felt ashamed of what I'd done... and that's because I'd never thought what it would do to someone that I really loved... did I love Rocky? Eric's words came back to me... he said that he saw something between Rocky and me that he hadn't seen between me and Seth... I said, somberly, "I never really realized that I was doing wrong by Seth... it would hurt me if he would have done the same thing with someone else... I didn't realize it. Rocky, Seth and I love each other but... it is a different kind of love... maybe as friends... I have to be honest with you... no, I want to be honest with you... and I am. This is all confusing to my brain, but I'm just going to let it come out... I want to get to know you; I mean I want to be with you. For the most part, Seth's and my relationship was our dicks... sure, he was and is a great friend; I'll never forget him... but we just aren't right for each other... and I feel totally different about you."

Rocky looked at me carefully, chose his words carefully, then dropped a bombshell... one that I was thinking of, one that I was trying to understand in my own head, "James, I think about you all of the time. My Mom, last night, said, "You are not the product of your experience... you are who you are today." She asked me about what I was thinking and feeling... I said I don't know... which is true in a way... anyway, I just want you to know that IF we become Better Friends... I mean boyfriends... I mean in a truly committed relationship – then I do not want to have someone who will fuck around on me. My Dad fucked around on my Mom... we've talked about this before... I won't do it."

I nodded. I... who am I to say..., but it came out, "I won't fuck around on you, Richard Randolph McBride. Just to clear the air, please don't say that I told you, Eric and I messed around last night, and a few other nights, too... I sucked him off. I had my finger in his butthole... and I have wanted to do more. He's not like us, though. We've jacked off, and I've sucked him before. He's sucked me once, no, twice... he's not into it."

"Larry, a school mate who you'll meet when school starts, is gay, too. I have to warn you that he makes himself available. He tells a convincing story, but everybody knows he's a fucking liar... he lies about the simplest of shit, stuff that don't mean anything... but it means everything, because he's lying through his teeth. He's, admittedly, got a fine body. I've used visions of his body to masturbate, more than once. I am attracted to his body. I would like to fuck him. But... I do not want him fucking me. If we did it, then all it would be is a fuck. Like my Dad did to my Mom..."

Just then Kay made herself known... "What did your father do to me... no, wait, Rocky, I know that your father was unfaithful to me, and to you and me. You know that I do not like that word... yes, that man did fuck around... his so called business trips... he was pretty dumb... and I was stupid for putting up with it all these years. May I ask what brought this up?"

"No, Mom. James and I were having a talk about some things. You know that I'm gay. I'm attracted to James. We're just laying down some groundwork... sorry, James... I didn't mean to out you... sometimes my mouth gets me into trouble. I'm sorry."

"Ma'am, I, too, am gay. I am attracted to your son." I looked to Rocky, then to his Mom and continued, "I have some things to work on... my past... Rocky said something profound a few minutes ago, something you told him just last night ... that a person is not a product of the past..."

"That they are what and who they are today." Mrs. McBride, Kay, finished.

"Yes. I don't quite understand... my Dad says that we are who and what we are because of the road we've traveled throughout our lives... heavy stuff... if we stay in the past then we piss all over today, sorry..."

"Rocky, I'm going to share a little confidence... I think it is important... James, Rocky is afraid that because he has his father's blood in him he will turn out like him."

I swiveled my head toward Rocky and glared into his eyes, "You can't be serious. I've never met your sperm donor, but I do not see anything even remotely similar to what you guys have told me about him... what did he go to jail for?"

"James, that's not important right..."

"No, Mom, it is important... it is what I am afraid of becoming... James, my father went to prison for raping a 14 year old boy. The boy testified that the relationship was consensual, that he wanted it. The courts thought otherwise... Kurt, the guy, tried to take his own life when he was 22. Mom, do I tell James or are you?"

Kay, visibly shaken to the core, gathered herself up, looked into Rocky's eyes, and said, "Kurt was or is, or would be, Rocky's half-brother. Though I am not his mother, he is Jed's son from one of his many relationships."

"Don't you have contact with him?"

"No. Dad called him a half-breed that did not deserve to have a father, that he was a bastard, and always would be one."

She turned to her son, "I called him after you went to bed last night. I told him what was going on with his father, your father... I invited him to dinner tonight. He declined..."

Rocky took a sudden deep breath, then with tears freely flowing out of his eyes and down his cheeks, said brokenly, "Mom, I have to make things right... I have to... I lied... he didn't hurt me, not Kurt... look Mom, Dad tried to rape me, not Kurt... I knew... that you and Dad loved each other... I... I... didn't want to hurt you..."

Kay walked to her son, pulled him into her arms, and held him tight as he released his pain into her bosom, into her being.

I had no alternative... I walked to Rocky and his Mom... the words, the conviction, welled up inside, and I said, "Rocky..."

Rocky turned and put his hand over my mouth, then brokenly, losing all control, he said to me and to his Mom, "Mom, Jed and Jimson raped John the morning that he died... John told me..." Rocky strengthened, turn away from us and blew his nose, stood up straight and tall, and said with total conviction, "I was ahead of John on the ATV... I was way, way ahead... I was going back to the house to get the shotgun... I was going to blow their heads off for doing that to him..."

Stone faced, ice cold, Mrs. McBride, said with venom dripping from her voice, "Richard Randolph McBride... now you listen to me very carefully. All that my question requires is a very simple yes or no... Did your father or your uncle rape you?"

"No. But they tried. I beat dad over the head with a 2×4. I told him that if he ever tried to do it again, then I WOULD kill him. If John would have told me that he'd been raped before... I would have killed them both... I would smile going to prison for the rest my life. I would have no remorse. None, zero, zilch, never would have given it a second thought."

"We need to tell the sheriff, Rocky. They need to know." She turned to me, "James, the coroner already knows that John was raped... DNA evidence hasn't returned from the laboratory, yet." Turning back to John, "Son, if that man, if any one of those two men ever show up anywhere around you, or me, then it will be me who goes to prison. I will go there with satisfaction, knowing I did this world a favor. Now, what do you say that we go have breakfast? Virginia is baking up some of her sweet rolls... James, you'll join us. Your Dad is going into town for gasoline for the tractor. He told me to tell you to take a shower here, and that your Mom will pick you up to go to the doctors." Her eyes twinkled, then looked at Rocky with a mischievous look and said, "I expect you to give any assistance that James may require... don't argue with me, Boy." She then winked and quickly walked out of the barn, heading to the house without another word being said... other than two groans from her underlings.

Meanwhile, I was about to experience spontaneous combustion from embarrassment. Rocky's expression clearly and convincingly spelled imminent nuclear meltdown.

When we entered the house, I glanced at the clock. It read 7:15. Virginia said, "These rolls have about 35 minutes to go..." Then she, winked. Kay giggled, then they turned back to breakfast preparations, leaving us standing there with our mouths agape, and once again feeling hot all over.

I grabbed Rocky's hand and drug him into his bedroom. "Are you kidding me?"

"The question is: are they kidding us?"

"I don't know about that... they're both in on it."

"Yeah... okay, so what do you need help doing?"

I wiggled my eyebrows. He flushed a deep scarlet red hue. To keep from spontaneously catching afire he walked to his dresser, retrieved two pair of underwear, socks and shorts then led us into the bathroom where he closed the door. I reached for the lock lever, but there was none. I found that odd, but didn't say anything.

Knowing that we didn't have much time, we stripped to our underwear... the obvious was obvious... the tension was thick... and I don't know why... I mean we'd seen each other naked before... we'd even shared fluids... we'd experienced orgasm before... and its aftermath... pleasurable in every way.

I swallowed deeply, took a deep breath, looked deeply into Rocky's eyes, then said, "May I?"

"Let's do it together." Rocky squeaked, then he reached his hands toward the waistband of my underwear. I did the same for him.


Rocky nodded, stepped closer, then without delay or hesitation, we took hold of our waistbands and lowered the last remaining threads to the floor and kicked them aside.

For the first time, I really, really looked at Rocky. The whelps... were turning dark. The bruises were more notable. The red places, redder. The blotches, blotchier. Then my heart went pitter patter when I looked deep into his eyes... they were very nearly translucent, made that way by the sunlight entering through the east facing window. His skin appeared velvety smooth, with only an occasional indentation here and there where his pores were especially large and noticeable. His lips, already luscious, were even lusciously-er, inviting, even.

The tension in the room was stifling. Our moment of truth had arrived. It was right then and right there... our lips came together, not hungrily or needily, they just came together naturally. My arms went around his back, trailed down, and rested on his bare cheeks. As soon as I touched them, they tightened, but only for a second, no more. His hands, meanwhile, were traveling a similar trail, and settled with his thumbs resting in my crevice and his fingers spread out over as much real estate as possible.

Rocky pulled his face away, thus breaking our kiss, saying breathlessly, "We're going to make a mess on the floor if we don't stop this. Are you ready for my assistance?"

"One of these days, real soon, I want to wash every single solitary micro-inch of your body... I want to feel all of you in every way imaginable, and then some more."

"Really, well I'd like for you to do just that. Meanwhile, I would love to smell and taste each and every pore on your body."

"Everywhere?" I said, nearly ready to pop my cork.


I shuddered. Rocky shivered. And believe me, the bathroom was extremely warm... their air conditioning was not working, so it was just us heating that room. Like I've said a number of times, had we been around gasoline... Bang!

We kissed one more time before separating. Rocky entered the shower, turned on the water, got it to temperature while I peed, taking care to not touch my dick, for obvious reasons.

I entered, closed the door to the enclosure. Quickly, Rocky soaped me up and began scrubbing everywhere, taking care of those vital places. He had me turn around, facing away, at which time he began washing my back and on down south to where my feet met the floor, then back up he went... I was in total heavenly bliss, then he took hold of my penis, stroked it exactly twice... which sent me over the edge. Once again, I felt myself sliding down. The coolness of the shower floor was noticeable, and brought me out of my induced stupor just long enough to notice that his penis was directly in front of my face. I would have to reach up, though, and I didn't want to do that for fear that I'd scrape him with my teeth. Fully composed, now, I stood up, with his assistance, ignoring a shard of pain emanating from my lower belly and right hip, and got busy washing his beautiful body from the tip of his head to the bottoms of his toes... he's ticklish, I found, so I didn't linger there... no, I saved the last few minutes to pay attention to that which was standing out proud and tall from a patch of pubes nestled in his lower belly. I took hold of it, and not satisfied – I knelt down, then engulfed his rigidity, and went to town. He, too, lasted no more than one minute before he blasted into outer space. Like me, he slid down the wall to the floor to keep from falling down.

Despite the searing white hot pain caused by wrapping my legs around his torso, we got situated and brought our lips back together; a relaxed passion taking over... that is until a knock on the door interrupted our interlude. Rocky, his voice much, much deeper said, "We'll be out in a couple of hours. Go away."

I giggled at his silliness... a side of him that I'd not seen before. Right then and there I resolved to watch for and hopefully see yet more sides to this boy that I was pretty sure I loved... yes, I love him... I feel much different than with Seth... it's almost like Rocky and my souls are touching, or trying to touch. I leaned in for one more kiss... but his mother opened the bathroom door, stuck her head in, grinned when I looked up (the shower doors are clear, not frosted as many are), and said that my Dad was here.

That got us into motion. Rocky washed my hair, then we rinsed off, got out, dried, and brushed out our hair. He handed me a new toothbrush. With that business taken care of, we put on clean underwear and shorts, and then headed into the kitchen using our noses to lead the way.

Dad looked up, smiled and beckoned for me to be seated. Virginia and Kay dished us up bounties of food... it was scarfed down in two New York seconds. Mom arrived just as the last morsel of the last sweet roll passed through my lips and suffered a sucking much like a vacuum would do. She said that we had to hurry along, as my appointment was at 9:00am. It was 8:35. And we had a 20 minute drive. She told me to put a shirt on, that Rocky's shorts were just fine to wear.

Just before we were to leave, Dad took me aside, looked into my eyes with intent, and said seriously, "You tell the doctors exactly the truth. I know you're hurting... I see it in your eyes. You do exactly what they tell you to do, no lip, no argument, and don't play any games with them. Do you understand me?"

"Yes, Sir. Perfectly. I will. I promise."

"No games, James."

"No games, Sir, Dad. Dad, I can't quit, though. I've got to keep fighting... I have to."

"You need to get well. You do whatever you have to do in order to get fixed up. Cooperate. Don't argue. Tell the truth... no matter what... no matter when... no matter how hard it may be. Are we understood?"

"Yes, Sir. I will. Dad?"

He nodded.

"I love you. Thanks for being my Real Dad."

His eyes softened, rapidly blinked a few times, then put his arm around my shoulders and walked me to the car. Mom was waiting. So was Kay, Virginia and Rocky. Although we didn't kiss, we looked into our eyes and said I love you that way.

I was almost giddy with excitement as Mom worked our way into town, and on up to hospital hill where the doctor's offices and the hospital are... obviously, right? Right.

No, I wasn't particularly happy with going to the doctor, rather I was giddily excited about the time that Rocky and I had intimately spent together. With those thoughts running through my mind, those thoughts were also running down south of the border. The shorts, thin but well constructed, didn't show the obvious, too much.

The receptionist handed me an iPod, punched some buttons on her computer terminal which lit up a screen on the pod. She then instructed me to take a seat, answer the each of the questions honestly and forthrightly. She told me that only the doctor would be given the results, that the answers are securely safeguarded and used by medical personnel to guide and direct my care. She was serious. She made me feel confident. While Mom was completing paperwork, I sat down and got busy answering those questions, being totally honest, even when it came to my sexual history and preferences. Sheesh, there were like 20 questions, because when you answered a question, three more popped up. They wanted detailed information... so I gave it. I no longer wanted to hide. Rocky was making me see things differently... I was utterly amazed that he was so, what, cognizant? Yeah, cognizant, aware of things that I'd not really been aware of before.

I signed my name and validated it with my date of birth. It asked for my social security number, but as far as I knew I didn't have one... and if I had one, it would not be valid since my name had just changed. I smiled as I signed James Edward Richardson, for the very first time, ever. I then clicked the Send button. I took the gadget to the receptionist. She confirmed the information had been saved to their secure computer system, and once again assured me that only the doctor would see the vital parts of my history. Once the information was processed, she said the computer scored me at 98% consistent, and that they sure wanted all people my age to answer correctly and truthfully. I nodded, thanked her, went and sat next to Mom. The nurse then called my name. When Mom stood to go with me, the Nurse asked her to please wait in the waiting room while the doctor examined me.

I weighed in at 83 pounds. I'd grown to 5 feet and ½ inch. My blood pressure was 106/84, pulse 84. My oxygen level was 98.2%. My vision was 20/40. All of the information was stored in their system... the nurse only pushed a few buttons and everything was saved.

I was taken to an exam room. The nurse put a gown on the table, gave me instructions to strip down, that I was going to get a complete physical since I'd never been seen in the clinic before, so that they could get a baseline, and everything needed for long-term care.

I'd just put on the gown when a knock on the door interrupted my method to madness on getting that damn thing on backward... as it turned out I dropped it just as the doctor entered the room. There I was already naked and ready, I guess. She introduced herself as Dr. Sara Blair, my doctor. She helped with the gown so that the essentials were covered.

Immediately, I liked her. She was really, really young, but not too young. The main thing I noticed was that her demeanor told me that she was a real people person... I know things about people, remember?

For a while we talked about my recent adoption, my life on the farm, how great things were going, and how I was feeling about when EX-Dad died... I was doing okay with it... I really didn't think too much... finally I just said, "He lost me a long time ago... I didn't want him to die... I just wanted him to be in prison for the rest of his life, but it is what it is. I'm moving on. I love my family, and they love me. I'm gay, does that bother you?"

"No. As a matter of fact, I have a gay brother and a gay brother-in-law. They are family, just like the rest of us. My husband's family has a big problem, yet my husband is a really kewl guy. He works here, too."

"Oh yeah? What does he do?"

"Charles is one of our two surgeons. We just graduated from our specialty training in December... does this bother you, because if it does, we have a really old guy who's good with kids, too."

"Oh no, you're fine... I already like you."

"Well, that goes both ways. Okay... some of the answers to our questionnaire are concerning, particularly the questions where you said that you had received severe punishment at home... I have to ask you, James... and please answer me totally truthful... are you being abused in any way?"

"Oh no, Ma'am. No way, not now." I said, looking directly into her eyes. Adding, "That stuff is in the past, Ma'am. I promise."

"We have to ask. My nurse is in the process of requesting electronic medical records from Wesley in Wichita. I'm going to want to carefully review those to see exactly where you are today... so we'll be running a bunch of lab tests. Tell me, James, how are you feeling today, right now."

Talk about being blunt and direct... she doesn't mince her words. "James, how are you feeling right now... I can't help you very well if I don't know exactly what is going on right now..."

"Okay... I hurt. My hip is killing me. It always hurts, but I fell yesterday. I was running through a pasture, tripped, fell... and, you might as well know... I broke my hip a few months ago... a doctor in Kansas City operated on me and put a plate and screws in... I've hurt it before... the doctors have all said that I'm okay... so I don't complain about it. My Dad gave me, he told me to be honest, so I am. My backside hurts, too... it's not as bad, though it bleeds when I poop. Mom has me drink some stuff every morning, except this morning, that helps to keep the yuck soft. That's about it. And, oh yeah, I noticed that my right breast is growing... uhm, I'm not turning into a girl, am I... I like boys 'that way'."

"Thank you for telling me what's going on... is there anything else that you are concerned about?"


"One last question for you... for right now... do you mind if I examine you... some boys don't much care for a woman examining their private areas?"

"You're fine. I trust you. Uhm, I'm, my, I've got an erection... it does that all the time. Sorry."

"Boys with erections is as common as boys with erections... all guys your age have them... they're pretty unpredictable, right?"

"Oh yes, Ma'am."

"Tell ya what... I don't have a problem with you being a boy. Do you have a problem with me being a woman?"

"Oh no, Ma'am. Like I said, I like you."

"Let's get busy then... we're gonna get along just fine... have you thought about being a doctor when you grow up?"

"I've thought about it. My grades suck, though... well, I haven't been in school for about a year... I'm looking forward to going school... I've met some kewl people."

By the time she got to my appendage, it was behaving itself, and didn't go hard again until she did my rectal examination. Her fingers are small enough that the examination didn't hurt... not too much... maybe a little sting... it's okay. Then, pushing aside my half-erect penis, she examined my testicles, first one side, then the other, and then she ran her fingers down the length of the shaft, "I'm just checking for tumors and abnormalities... you're just fine." She arranged my gown and the sheet so that I was covered.

She had me sit up, and then she did some manipulations to both of my legs, and then to my right side, that sent shards of pain throughout my body... to the point of almost being nauseated. Quickly, I brushed away a tear that had dropped down my cheek... I hadn't even realized they were leaking.

The ruse was gone. The faking was gone. I was fucked. I knew I was fucked. I could never farm again. I'd be a burden. The old thinking was coming back...

"James, are you with me? Are you with me in the here and now? Do you want me to get your Mom?"

"I can't be a burden... I have to work... I just have to..." I said, laid back onto the table and bringing my legs up so that my feet were resting flat on the table, and started crying... I covered my eyes... I hated it when I cried like that, like a baby.

"James, tell me... are you being forced to do things you are incapable of... at least right now?"

I shook my head no.

"What kinds of chores are you assigned?"

"Mainly the barn. I help my brothers... they're my same age... the chicken coop... Sometimes I help with the goats... oh yeah, the ram bucked me hard yesterday... knocked me on my butt... that hurt... it was my own fault, though, I turned my back on it."

"Anything else?"

"My brother Eric and I toss, or scoot off bales of hay from the loft to the floor... that doesn't hurt... ladders do... but I go up them anyway."

"Your chores sound pretty typical for a 12 year old. I know the Richardson's. They love their family and would never do anything to bring harm... James, tell me something... go ahead, look at me... I'm in your corner."

I uncovered my eyes. She handed me a Kleenex to wipe my eyes, but I stayed lying down... it was halfway comfortable... at least the shards of pain weren't slicing through my body at lightning speed.

I nodded, feeling my composure returning.

"Could it be that you're at least a little afraid that they'll kick you out if you're unable to work and do heavy chores as you get older? Is this what you're worried about?"

The tears started all over again. Brokenly, I replied, "No... not really... I want to work... it makes me feel good, like I'm doing something... I don't take charity and hand-outs... never have... probably won't ever..."

"I understand, James. Let me show you something. Can you look over here at me?"

I turned my head. Dr. Blair took two steps back, lifted her pants legs up to mid-calf... then seeing that I saw those, she turned away to face the door, then lifted her smock to her mid back... there I saw terrible scars all over her back. She turned to face me, put herself together, and then said, "I lost my legs in an ATV accident. The machine caught fire. I was trapped until my father could get the thing off me. I was in the hospital for over 9 months. I thought medical school was going to kill me, but I kept with it. I met my husband in school. Here's the deal, James. Listen to me very carefully... if you are in physical pain, then I'll give you pain medicine. If you are feeling sorry for yourself, then I'm going to kick you in the butt... and I can do it... just ask my donkeys... yep, we get in some real ass kicking contests... ya know what?"

She had my total and complete attention, I shook my head, "No, what?"

"We have a healthy respect for each other. They know that if they kick, then I'll give them a run for their money with this prosthesis." She was smiling as she talked. I couldn't help but smile, knowing all too well that she was and would give them a hard time.

"Do you understand what I'm talking about?"

"Yeah, but..."

"Yeah but my butt... they get you nowhere, James. Not here, anyway. Ya ready for the straight scoop?"

I looked at the ceiling and counted a few of the little holes that present the texture appearance, then turned to her, nodded, "Go for it."

"First, the easy stuff... your breasts are both a little puffy and tender, the right side is pronounced more than the left side. We call this gynecomastica. By definition, this word, your condition means that the normal balance of hormones in your system is a little out of whack... this is quite normal in adolescent boys. About 6 percent of boys have this occurrence during their adolescent years. The good news is that it is not cancer. The better news is that you're not turning into a girl, although there is a hormone called estrogen that runs around guys' bodies... it is an abundance of this hormone that causes breast enlargement in guys, particularly boys in your age group."

"So, what can be done about it?"

"Nothing at this point in time. The condition will last anywhere from 6 months to a couple of years... it will go away on its own, once your hormones get synced up. You'll probably be most comfortable wearing light thin t-shirts. Another rare cause of gynecomastica is testicular cancer. As you know, I examined your privates very carefully... I felt no masses or any other abnormality that is indicative of cancer. Your penis is normal. Another cause can be malnutrition. You do not appear malnourished."

"Oh but I was... I just about died..." I told her about the basement deal, eating whatever and whenever I could... all that stuff...

"Thank you for telling me about your difficult period in life. This may explain your bone problems, too. I tell you what... Dr. Dornenburg, from Kansas City, comes to our clinic every Wednesday... he's here today."

"He's the doctor that operated on me... kewl..."

I'll arrange you for an appointment. He's not very busy today. Maybe he'll have time to see you before you get dressed... I'm going to let him order any x-rays... we'll get a chest x-ray when you get the other ones. One last thing... your bottom: you have a fissure that isn't healing. This, too, I mean it's slow healing can be another caused by malnutrition... If it's okay with you, I'm going to have my husband take a look-see. We need to get that healed up before you get so much scar tissue that you cannot experience sexual intercourse."

She already told me that she doesn't have a problem with gay people, but still, I'd never heard it said that way... so I was a bit embarrassed... Seemingly, she was reading my mind, "I've had to have two surgical procedures so that I am capable of having sexual intercourse... I was burned there, too. <She giggled>. Trust me. I do not show that part of my anatomy to anyone other than my husband and doctors." She scrunched up her face... she was smiling.

I relaxed, then nodded and said, "Okay. I like sex. My boyfriend and I want, actually I want him to make love to me that way... I just can't right now... it hurts too badly."

"Understood. We'll give you every opportunity to enjoy a healthy physical relationship. My husband is in his office. If you have no objection, I'll call him in. Meanwhile, I'll let your mother know what's going on so far."

"Tell her that I love her, would you?"

"I'll do better than that. Would you like for her to be here?"

"Yeah, if that's no problem."

"Sure thing, I'll be right back."

"Ma'am... I need to use the can... may I go?"

"Sure thing. It's right next door. Let's bundle you up... unless you want to show off your cute-cheeks." Dr. Blair laughed.

"Very funny."

I returned to the exam room. Dr. Blair, a man and Mom were waiting, chatting. Dr. Blair introduced Dr. Blair. The man, Dr. Blair, shook my hand, saying, "Most people around here call me Dr. Charlie. You are certainly welcome to use this name, especially when my wife, also known as Dr. Anne, is present. Dr. Anne tells me you are having a problem with your bottom. I may be able to help you, with yours and your mother's permission, of course."

To Drs. Blair, Mom replied, "Of course you have my permission." Then to me, "I'm going to step into the hallway for your privacy."

She gave me a hug and stepped out.

They then had me sit in a chair while making changes to the exam table configuration, namely lowering the head and raising up the end, pulling up the footrest thing. I wondered how the heck he was going to examine me, not even thinking that I'd be put nearly upside down.

Dr. Anne gave me a medicine cup with some fluid in it. She explained that it was mild sedative so that I would relax and not experience any pain. The flavor was cherry. Although it was sweet to taste, there was bitterness to it, too. Immediately, my eyelids felt heavy and droopy. They helped me to the table where I laid face first on it. They then hiked my butt way up in the air, rearranged the sheet... everything after that got pretty fuzzy, though I nearly jumped off the table when I heard a spray and an immediate ice cold sensation. I then recall hearing a door close. Sometime later, I cannot tell you how long it was, the door opened, a table like thing with gadgets on it was wheeled into the room. I got fuzzy again, but then Dr. Charlie said to me, "James, while you're sedated, we're going to perform a laser treatment for a tear in your bottom on the right side. You will feel no pain, although you will feel another shot of cold... I will be putting anesthetic into your bottom. Do you need some more sedation?"

I shook my head no, rested my head back onto the table, and did, indeed, feel a burst of cold in my bottom. The cold sensation soon went away. I went fuzzy again. The next thing I knew was the table being adjusted so that I was level to the floor. They helped me into the chair to sit down.

Mom reentered the room, sat down next to me, took my hand, squeezed it, and said that everything was okay, that I was healed down there. Dr. Charlie confirmed Mom's statement, gave her a prescription to fill, and asked if I had any questions for him. I had no questions, so he exited the room. The wooziness was passing minute by minute.

Next, with a nurse on each side, I was taken to another exam room down the hall. Dr. D. was sitting at a small desk waiting. We shook hands and he began the questions, like how long had I been hurting, if any accidents had happened, did I think the operation helped, was I ever out of pain, etc.

X-rays were ordered. He came back and said that he wanted me to get a CT scan. By then I was fully coherent without any sensation that I was drugged. The CT scan was performed at the hospital. By then it was 11:15. I was hungry and thirsty. Mom said the return appointment wouldn't take too long, surely, then we'd either get something quick to eat or we'd just go home. I made mention that my bottom no longer had any pain in it. She said that Dr. Charlie had performed a laser procedure to close the fissure, that everything turned out okay, that I would require some cream medication for a week, and that I'd be fine so long as I didn't give birth again and refrained from 'other' activities. She didn't have to spell what 'other' meant. I knew immediately... her face flushed a little bit. Meanwhile, I was looking for a crack to slink into.

Returning to the clinic, we were ushered into Dr. D.'s office. He was busily looking over the x-rays on a computer monitor.

After sitting down and getting comfortable, he offered, "James, you have what we call a slipped capital epiphysis, also known as SCFE. This is where the growth plate at the upper end of your femur, the big long bone in your thigh, slips and separates from the big bone. Most often, this occurs in adolescent boys; its cause is unknown. We don't know why it happens. You have a history of trauma injury... this may be what caused the SCFE to happen, though we do not know for certain. Let's just assume your injury is the cause."

I nodded, saying, "So what do we do now?"

"That brings us to another problem I found on your x-rays. The problem is that the plate that I put into your pelvis a few months ago has detached from the bone. The good news is that the fracture has healed. I do not think this is causing your pain. I'm convinced the SCFE is the main source of your discomfort. Which brings me to treatment recommendations... first, we need to operate as soon as possible... we need to stabilize the SCFE. I use the method of screw fixation." He reached into a briefcase on the desk and pulled out a long screw, about 5 inches long, held it to the x-ray display and showed me how they would put it in. Continuing, "Treatment is urgent, James. The longer the fracture is unstable, the greater are chances of complications. I only come here on Wednesday's; the rest of my time is in Kansas City, at the University. I do not want you waiting until next week. I would like to perform the operation this afternoon, otherwise I want you to come to Kansas City and have it done tomorrow, Friday at the latest. I am going to leave the room for a few minutes so that your mom and you can talk, alone."

"Doctor, I'm sure this is first on James' mind, and mine too... Will he have limitations?"

"That's a very good question. James, you'll be on crutches for weeks, or even months; it all depends on how quickly you heal. Being off of your leg during the immediate post operative is imperative... 6 to 8 weeks out, at least."

"Mom, I can't be laid up like that... I have chores and stuff to do."

Dr. D. added, "James, if you do not have the operation, you'll steadily go from bad to worse. If this operation gets put off or if it is not done, then your limitations will steadily grow until you are unable to do anything that requires the use of your leg. One of the complications is a frozen joint... and if this happens, then even walking will become increasingly impossible. I'm going to step out to let you and your Mother discuss everything I've told you... Before I go, as with any operation, there are possible complications to watch for, though they are relatively rare, I must mention them."

"The most common complication is that the head of the femur will have its blood supply compromised. This is a serious complication, though it only happens about 1% of the time. There nothing we can do about it; there is no treatment, in other words. The others, of course, is the very, very low risk of infection, contracture... meaning that your leg freezes up, and, of course, the rare anesthetic complications – which can include death. I simply have to say these things so that you are fully informed. You are young and otherwise healthy, so I see no big complications."

"Post operatively, you will require physical therapy. It must be done to prevent your legs from freezing up. It will also help to relieve post operative discomfort. This is the where you come in, James. I can do surgery all day long, I know a bunch of operative procedures... my work takes 2-3 hours, in your case, but unless you cooperate and do everything that is recommended, then my work is all for naught. You and your Mom talk about this. I need to see another patient... I'll be back in half an hour, or so."

He exited and closed the door behind him.

Immediately, I burst into tears, sobbing quietly.

Mom, with a clear parental voice, said, "James, stop it right now. There is no choice. You must have the operation. And you will have the operation. The way I see it, you will have the operation today. The sooner the better. I will not see you become a cripple, especially when you have an option to not become one. Dry up your tears. Having the operation and doing exactly what Dr. D. says to do is simply a challenge in life, one that you must face up to and meet with vigor and commitment."

And so it was. When put that way, I had no choice but to go forward.

Stacy answered the phone when Mom called home. Dad and Thomas were over at Kay, Virginia and Rocky's, cutting hay. Mom then called Kay's house and informed her of the news. Kay assured us that she'd inform Dad.

Right around 2pm, Dad arrived and reiterated what Mom said about going forward. He would not listen to my whining about needing to do chores to be a part of the family. He said I was already a part of the family, to get over it, and to move forward. Then he grinned and left the hospital room that I'd been admitted to. Five minutes later, a knock interrupted the remaining chain of 'feeling sorry for me'. The door crept open... it was then that I saw what Dad was grinning about.

Slowly, carefully, hesitatingly, in walked Rocky. The expression on his face clearly spelled worry and concern. I reached out my arms to him.

A little later, at 3:17 I looked at the clock, memorized its facing as I went to sleep in the operating room, lying on the table, ready to face the next challenge.

To be continued

Editor's Notes:

Well, I guess James has figured out that when it comes to medical treatment, it is important to follow the Doctor's orders. We mere mortals are simply meant to follow the orders of those superhuman providers of eventual wellness.

Yes, I know, they are only practicing medicine. You would think that eventually they would learn it well enough that they could just do the stuff to make us well, instead of having to keep practicing.

I am sure that James is in very good hands. He has his family and the love of his life, to give him moral support, and to love him. And he has a very good Doctor, who really does know what he is doing, and who will do everything in his power to help James back to being healthy and fit.

Let's hope that everything will work out well, and that James and Rocky will have the rest of their lives to love and care for one another.

I do hope it won't be too long before we get the next chapter.

Darryl AKA The Radio Rancher

Previous ChapterNext Chapter