Never Give Up
Well we made it to Tim's sweet sixteenth birthday and everybody was there. Dan's parents grouped with Rory and Bobby and were deep in conversation, some friends from school were there but not many, it was more of a family barbecue thing. A laid back night with just background music, nothing too heavy that's what he wanted, a family chill out night.
We cut the enormous ice cream cake that the boys had made, another triumph and started handing it around. Donny was nervous and seemed somewhat excited. He looked so sexy in his black hip hugging jeans and emerald green t-shirt, that kid was just bloody gorgeous. His bright blue eyes shone, his ginger curly hair flowing gently in the slight breeze. Tim had chosen his dropped waist shorts with a pair of white briefs poking over the top and white tank top but his hair was down. When he had it trimmed the girl had cut it straight across the bottom so it touched his shoulders and looked great with his long elegant neck. We made some speeches but nothing like Donny's, it included funny stories about their childhood and some not so funny fights but it was light hearted and the speech of the night. Rob made a beautiful speech and near the end he thanked me and Dan for bringing up his grandson to be a beautiful man inside and out. Dan was holding me to him when Becky passed a guitar to Donny and he said, "This one's for you Tim."
He played a medley of chords and when he reached a low note he stopped, looked at Tim and mouthed 'Happy Birthday'. Tim's eyes widened as Donny started to play an old Air Supply song, 'making love out of nothing at all'. It was from the heart, Becky did backup and Donny never took his eyes off Timmy.
It started Tim's tears streaming down his cheeks and he looked like he was going to collapse.
Donny to his credit did a wonderful job of it all but when he came to the last verse he handed the guitar to Jamie who strummed the last chords.
Every time I see you all the rays of the sun
are streaming through the waves in your hair;
and every star in the sky is taking aim
at your eyes like a spotlight,
The beating of my heart is a drum, and it's lost
and it's looking for a rhythm like you.
You can take the darkness from the pit of the night
and turn into a beacon burning endlessly bright.
I've got to follow it, cause everything I know, well it's nothing till I give it to you.
The silence when he finished the song was deafening.
He walked over to Tim, held his hand up and slipped a beautiful white gold ring on his finger "Happy birthday Timmy."
Tim was in shock, he just stood there not moving, all of a sudden he threw his arms around Donny's neck and said, "Thank you."
They didn't kiss but they nuzzled and ran their hands over each other's backs, they both teared up again, so did I.
After a few minutes Donny walked Tim over to us and everyone was patting Donny on the back as they passed by.
"Dan, Cody can I talk to you in private?" Donny asked.
"Sure, let's all go for a walk. Do you want Tom and Trent to come?"
"No, I spoke to them earlier, they know what I'm going to say to you."
When we got to a quiet part of the beach we all sat down. Donny took Tim's hand and started, "I've always loved Timmy from the second I showed him how to make sandcastles to the pain of watching him put himself in danger. I had to tell my dads the night after I wrecked the house. I was so worried I might lose him to some nobody who would use him," he looked at Tim whose mouth had dropped.
"Why didn't you say something Donny we would have understood, it could have saved some pain on all sides?"
"His age Dan, he was a minor."
"What?" Tim shrieked, "Donny I'm going to kick your ass into next week."
Don put his lips on Tim's mouth,
"Be quiet for a minute baby."
He then turned back to us saying, "I'm going to say something you might not like but there are reasons I kept quiet. I didn't want to start something with Timmy that felt wrong and dirty, I want it to be perfect for us. I know about Trent's problems when he met dad and I have spoken to Bobby about Rory's pain and I suspect something happened to you Codes but that's your business. I don't want to start out with any regrets, I wanted us to be perfect." He looked at Dan and squeezed his shoulder. He continued, "It killed me when he stopped our sleepovers but it also saved me from many sleepless nights, and I'm thanking him also."
He smiled at Tim and he nodded, oh and blushed.
"I want Tim in my life like forever, but I also wanted to wait until he was old enough, he's now at the age of consent and can make some decisions on his own."
"But Donny we would have supported you," I said.
"No Codes, it was wrong, it felt wrong, now it feels right so if you don't mind can I date your son and maybe have sleepovers again? I've missed my Timmy so much these past few years and dads. It's not a sex thing, it's just a sleepover, the other stuff we will talk about," he grinned, a bit embarrassed like.
"Of course Donny but it's not us you need to ask, let's go Dan, I need a drink."
"Okay Squirt, I'll get it."
We left them to it and after a few long minutes an excited Donny came running inside to the fridge.
"Timmy said yes and also he wants a Coke and some chips, thank god he didn't ask for an apple," he giggled.
Mum said, "Well I'm glad that's sorted Squirt, took his bloody time about it, I guess like father like son."
"Your right there mum, I don't think Donny realizes what's in stall for him, Tim's a handful at times but I wish them luck," I laughed.
She looked me up and down then shook her head.
"Like father like son hey Codes," she chuckled.
I gave her a small tap on the shoulder then kissed her cheek.
"Maybe," I whispered in her ear. I rolled my eyes at Dan.
"Can you get mum and I some chips Dan?"
"Sure Squirt, what kind?"
"Plain ones baby," I said.
What has Donny got himself into? I couldn't stop laughing and was still giggling when Dan turned the lights out. We would have a good talk with Tom and Trent tomorrow.
Tim apologized to Becky for being a pain, she told him she so wanted to tell him what Donny and she were up to but had to keep it quiet.
Their first painting arrived from Bobby in the form of a birthday present, it was a red and green apple. Looking closer, two school boys were walking hand in hand on the beach, I know now what Rory's comment meant.
We promised mum we would go up to the farm soon, Dan was in pre-season training and the next big event was the club gala night, but I'm getting ahead of myself.
We had a talk with the boys before we went off to bed and they understood our concerns and promised to keep this to themselves at school not wanting to invite trouble. They went to bed, I could hear Tim's shower running and a lot of slapping and giggling.
"I'm not really comfortable about the kids having sex Codes," Dan whispered.
"I don't think they are going to for awhile Dan, I've a new found respect for Donny, he's trying to do all the right things and laws seem important to him, they are not allowed by law to go the whole bit until Tim is eighteen."
"Do you trust them not to?"
"Yes Dan I trust Donny."
"It's Tim that's going to force it Dan."
"How do you know that Squirt?"
"I just know these things Dan," I winked at him.
"Oh, goodnight Codes, I'm so tired."
"Me too Dan."
I wiggled into him yawning.
He wiggled and yawned and sighed.
"Fuck this shit Codes."
We were very passionate that night, it was very late again when a very wasted Dan said, "I love you."
It never ceases to amaze me how just a few words can change a persons life. At breakfast I heard nothing but two kids having a good time, they both laughed, joked and ribbed each other about who snored the loudest, and yes there was plenty of snogging. Dan was very quiet but he found a gap in the morning to sit with the boys and talk about what they wanted.
"Dad we talked a lot last night and we both aren't ready to commit to full on sex, we have decided to wait until I'm eighteen to do the Cody dance." They both looked at me and giggled.
"We just want to be together like before, sleepovers and such," Donny said.
"Well that's very mature of you both and you know if there's a problem come to us or at least talk with Luke or Rory, we don't know it all but we do know about love."
"We will dad, I promise. Dad Codes can I ask you something?" Donny asked.
"Of course honey what is it?"
"Where do you hide the school uniforms?"
That started another round of aching laughter.
A week later Dan came home with two fancy dress costumes he had bought, a pirate and an apple, he left them on Tim's bed and that night after school all we could hear was giggling and banging coming from his room. They gave us a show and looked so sweet in them, I hope they don't grow up that fast but my guess is they already have. We would rather them making love in a safe environment than trying to have a quickie in the back seat of a car, it's just so tacky.
(Oh shit, did I just say that? Well it was Dan's idea to pullover to the side of the road and fuck the other night not mine.)
The music was loud and I could hear the giggling coming from their bedroom, Tim and Donny were having a private party and by the sounds of it they were having a ball. Dan looked at me so I shrugged my shoulders.
"Just dancing Dan."
He lifted his eyebrow and sighed then went back to his footy magazine.
They both came running out, Donny grabbed me and Tim took Dan's hand and started dancing with us, they were pumped and excitedly happy. Donny would be starting his training on the beach tomorrow and Tim was going to join in. They both have been running with my boys for a few years now but this time it will be different as officially Don was a team member and will play with the seniors next year. He maybe will get a game or two before then as he turns eighteen halfway through the season. He gets his car license in a few weeks so will be able to drive Tim to school, he's quite a responsible driver so we have no problem with him driving Tim around.
On the beach the next day the coach came up to the house and asked if I could find something for Tim to do, he was disrupting the training.
"Bum crack?" I lifted my eyebrow (sort of).
"Yes Codes, you taught him well," he laughed.
I got him to help Rory and me with the sausage sizzle we had prepared which kept him occupied for a while but he still posed for the boys.
"Coach isn't happy with you at the moment baby, maybe you better tone it down a bit."
"Oh no dad, it's not for the boys, it's for coach's son Shaun, he's a real homophobic dick so I like to rub it in," he replied.
"Okay, we all know that but can you tone it down a bit, you're only aggravating the situation."
"Okay dad, I know now why Donny has never liked him," he said.
"I don't know why he's like that Tim, you and he got along fine when you were little, he even kissed your cheek," I said remembering a very tiresome new years eve I had when Tom and Trent had to take Donny home because he was going to murder Shaun if he didn't stop kissing Tim. Only child's play but my guess is Shaun got wise at school and lost his sweet side. He was a gorgeous boy, same age as Tim but very outspoken on many subjects, he had an opinion on everything and sometimes to the coach's embarrassment.
He never came here when his parents were invited and it suited us beautifully.
He was nothing like his father.
"Tim, I want to talk to you about something," I said.
"I want you to start working in the shop on weekends just to get some experience, just a few hours every now and then, it will be good for you."
"Okay dad, how much do I get?"
"Same as everyone else Tim no favors," I replied.
"Oh okay then, I better do overtime because I want to buy something nice for Donny when he starts playing," he said.
"You have money in the bank Tim if you need to buy a gift."
"I know dad but I want to work for this money, it will mean more to me and Don."
"What have you got in mind?"
He leant over and whispered.
"A cock ring dad."
"I want to get Don a cock ring so he can wear it on the field, it will be like I was there with him," he wiggled his eyebrows and did a great job of it too, bloody smartarse.
I let out a giggle and couldn't stop shaking my head.
"What's up Codes?" Rory asked.
"He wants to buy Don a cock ring to play in."
"Okay, at least he doesn't want him to get it put through his nose," he chuckled.
"Baby, don't you think the guys will rib him when he showers?"
"Showers? No way is he showering there, he's coming home to do that," he said as a matter of fact.
"Okay baby whatever you say," I couldn't stop myself laughing and had to retreat inside as my boys came over to eat.
I got myself straightened up splashing water on my face. Dan came over to the barbecue and asked what was up. I told him and he said,
"How come you never thought of that Squirt?"
"I did Dan but your bulge is big enough as it is, but can you imagine Donny's when he puts it on? Especially if he throws a boner, he will look like he's carting around the Jerusalem donkey in his shorts." It cracked me up again I had to go inside, I was getting very strange looks.
After the next weekend at the shop Tim put his hand out to be paid then he quit. He said he had enough to buy Donny's present and didn't really like working that much. I swear everyone that was in earshot that weekend burst out in fits of laughter but he was perplexed as to why.
We forced him to keep the job telling him he needed to do something with his time, he agreed but asked for a raise.
"But dad these are third world country wages, time for you to give everyone a raise at the shop or we will go on strike." He stood up to me.
My god he was going to push me into bankruptcy.
Of course I had always overpaid my workers, I would be nothing without them but he had a point so everyone got a raise that week. Thank god the strike was avoided.
The night Donny got his license he asked Tim to go to the cinema, he would pick him up at seven for their first official date. Tim was rushing around trying to find something to wear, for some reason he was nervous, he changed three times until he settled on one of my outfits and he looked gorgeous.
Donny arrived spot on seven looking like a pumped senior football player. My guess is he changed several outfits until he decided on this one, I couldn't help myself, my eyes went to his package, it was on display and maybe he had a hard on, or maybe he got his cock ring, poor Tim. I giggled to myself.
"What's that Codes?" Dan asked.
"Nuthin Dan," I smiled.
Getting a phone call after ten isn't the best and when it's the police it's even worse. I went into shock as the caller told me about the accident, I asked if he could repeat what he said and handed the phone over to Jamie, after a few minutes he thanked him and hung up. I was dazed and looking at Dan who was confused by my actions.
"Dan, Cody, there's been an accident with the boys but they are okay. Tim is in hospital with suspected concussion, the car is a write off and Donny has very minor scratches and cuts. It seems they had a blowout and there was nothing Don could do, he sideswiped a guard rail. It was an accident, no charges and no one is being arrested."
I think at this moment in time was Dan's undoing, he started shaking then a few tears flowed. I pulled his head into my shoulder and rubbed his back, after some minutes he got control of his emotions and grabbed his car keys.
"Let's go Codes," he said.
I drove and Luke and Jamie followed us. I knew everything was all right and re-assured him many times on the way.
We passed Donny's car three miles down the freeway, it was being loaded onto a tray truck, the left hand side was a wreck. I could see Tom's car with its flashing lights parked on the opposite side of the road.
"Dan give Tom a call to see if he knows anything more," I said.
He flipped his phone and rang.
"What happened mate?"
He listened then said, "See you there," then hung up.
Some minutes went by before he could talk, I took his hand in mine and he said,
"Tom said that the car is a write off but Donny has insurance and he won't be charged because it was a simple accident. Tim banged his head on the side window enough to keep him overnight in hospital, he said that the left hand front tyre blew out and Donny reacted immediately and started to slow down to pull over. He didn't see the safety rails until it was too late and they collided with it."
"Okay Dan, all's well then, there was nothing they could do, thank god the car was solid," I replied.
We parked at the hospital and Dan almost ran.
At the nurses station we were directed to a room on the third floor where sitting by Tim was Donny and Trent. Tim was holding court and telling Trent how brave Donny was after the accident.
"He was so cool Trent, the first thing he did was to get me off the freeway and then he rang the RACQ emergency line."
"Hi dads, sorry about this but I have to stay here the night, guess Donny can't stay with me but I'll cope," he sighed.
He had a small bandage on his forehead and when Luke arrived, he checked him out and agreed that all was well.
Donny held Tim's hand while he drifted off to sleep. He told us he would stay the night anyway and call us if there was any change and for us all to go home and get some rest.
We left the hospital late and didn't talk on the way. I had to get Dan out of the car, he looked so far away and lost. I made coffee and put some biscuits out, it was a bit chilly so we sat inside on the couch. Unbeknown to Dan I crunched up one of my herbal sleeping pills and put it in his coffee. Nothing was said, I just held him while he drifted off to sleep, I gently laid him down and put his feet up, then covered him with a blanket.
I lay down on the floor next to him using cushions for a pillow and the crochet rug mum had made for me.
I drifted off finally but my slumber was broken.
Waking up before dawn I felt for Dan but he wasn't there, he was on the porch curled up in the swing. I put the coffee on and then went to see how he was feeling.
He was just looking out to sea, tears were dripping down his cheeks, he made no sound.
"Dan why don't you go take a shower, they will both be home after lunch and Donny said he would ring if there was any change."
He gave me a sorrowful look and said, "I'm sorry Codes I don't know why but I feel like shit, I need to see him Codes."
"Okay baby, we will go as soon as we have coffee, I know how you feel."
So back to the hospital we went, Dan ran to the ward and when we got there, Tim and Donny were laughing and hugging.
"Dads why are you here so early, I'll be home after lunch, there was no need to come back, I'm fine thanks to my bodyguard," he smiled at Donny.
"We needed to be here son just to see you," I said but nodded my head towards Dan.
"Dad what's wrong?" Tim asked Dan.
Dan broke down then pulled Timmy into his arms, he wept as he rocked Tim from side to side. I touched Donny's shoulder and whispered,
"Let's get some breakfast."
"Okay Cody, be back soon hon," he kissed Tim's cheek and we left them to it.
"What's the matter Cody, Dan's a wreck did he sleep at all last night?"
"He's in pain Donny, not physically just in his head, he's scared to death Tim is going to be hurt more than he was. It's always been like that baby, he feels he has let him down but he doesn't see that Tim was being protected by you which I have to thank you for from the bottom of my heart."
"Cody, doesn't he know I've always been protecting Timmy. I always saw how fragile he was and it makes me feel good to look after him, it has a bonus you know, Tim loves me to death which makes me feel so complete, I know he manipulates me but it's cool to feel wanted," he smiled.
"Okay baby, I know that but if you get a moment can you tell Dan, just remind him you will always be there for Tim."
"Sure Codes, is he going to be all-right?"
"God I hope so Donny, he's taken a lot on his shoulders over the years this just might break him, I have to somehow shock him out of it otherwise he's going to wallow in self pity."
"Well he's stronger than me Codes, always has been," Donny said.
"Not this time kid, there's more to this than you know, remind me one day to tell you a story, it's long and not pretty but it's something you must know about, just you okay?"
"Okay Codes, when we get a quiet moment I would like that."
I decided to tell Donny our story because I don't want him to take on what Dan has over the years, none of it was his fault but he blames himself so much, it's been eating away at him forever.
After eating some breakfast we headed back to Tim's room, I opened the door and saw a beautiful scene, Dan was lying next to Tim, his head was on his chest and Tim was running his hand through Dan's hair.
"Prince Daniel loved Princess True Love with all his heart, he was very lonely without her and worried because she lived with a very bad man in a tower, one day while he was walking in the woods he came upon a frog... and so it went. Tim was telling Dan his story, Dan laid quietly. Donny and I left them to it and sat in the waiting room, it was an hour before Dan came and got us.
He saw Donny and whispered, "Thank you," before he hugged him then he turned to me and pulled me into him and kissed my head whispering, "I love you Cody Mitchell, I'll never leave you and I'll never let you down."
"I love you too Daniel Lawrence, you are my strength, you have always owned my heart and you have never ever, not once let me down."
"Cody, Dan why don't you go home and get some rest, I will see that Tim gets home safely. Dad left his car for us last night, I will look after him so there's no problem we cant fix but I want you both to do something for me," Donny said.
"Anything Donny," Dan replied.
"Let me worry about Timmy, he's my responsibility, I promise you nothing is going to happen to him and I'm never going to hurt him. We are starting our journey, you both have taught us so much growing up you are the best role models apart from my dad and Trent that I have. Dan, the most important thing to remember is the downsides of life are nothing, absolutely nothing compared to your love for each other, nothing. Focus on that part of your lives, everything else pales into the background compared to that. It's the same for your son and me, this is just a hiccup, we are stronger for it and Codes, we will never give up." He kissed us both and we went in to see Tim, Dan was all smiles and held me to him, not letting go.
While Dan made coffee I slipped into my hipsters and harness then walked out into the kitchen, I leant over the breakfast table spread my legs and whispered to Dan, "Was that your kilt on the bed I saw Dan?"
His eyes popped and he said, "Stay there, don't move." He ran to the bedroom then looked at me again, he hit the wall, spun around then changed at lightning speed.
If it wasn't for the sound of a car coming up the drive we would still be doing the washing, I was holding the lid down by sitting on it and Dan was making sure I didn't move by attaching a very important part of him to my insides, we just made it.
We had talked about what Donny said to us and decided on two things, one was that he was a very clever young man and we were proud to call him son and the second was that whatever happens we will always have each other, nothing else matters.
Tim was being his usual self when he got home, he headed for Dan and cuddled him.
"Daddy?" he said.
I rolled my eyes and Donny giggled.
"Daddy, can Donnie's and me get a house?"
"Because you hate housework."
"Forget it Tim, help me make some sandwiches."
"Can't do that dads, I'm sick but Donny can help you," he smiled and leant on the table, bum crack for miles.
"Timmy," came a very stern rebut from Donny.
"Aren't you supposed to be helping to make sandwiches?" Tim smiled.
"Fuck I love this family," Donny screamed.
He leant into Dan and said,
"That's why I love your son."
"That's why I love his father."
Dan looked over to me and smiled, I was trapped by his grey eyes for a moment, I mouthed "I love you Mister Lawrence."