Westpoint Tales

by Kiwi

Jason and Jordan's tale - 6

The girls came back, five of them together, carrying their books and their lunch stuff ahead of them. They filed down through the crowded hall and spread out to sit around the, mostly, empty table.

"Sorry, Jordan," the blond-haired girl, Sandie Metcalf, touched his shoulder as she spoke. "That was wrong. We shouldn't have walked out on you like that. We already knew that you are gay, well Brenda and I did. If you want to make a public stand about it, then we should support you if we're your friends, not walk away. So, sorry. Okay?"

"Yeah." "Right." "Amen to that." "Sorry, Jordan." The other girls all nodded in agreement.

"Okay." Jordan beamed. "Thanks Girls, and thanks for coming back. You're all good friends - bloody great friends. This here is Jason. Say hello. Maybe he'll talk to you, he doesn't want to talk to me."

"Hello Jason," Sandie turned to him. "Why don't you want to talk to Jordan? Jordan's a good guy; he's a really nice kid. Ask my Gran, she thinks he's a lovely boy."

It was Jason’s turn to be embarrassed now. He blushed and looked down at the table.

"Maybe. I wouldn't know. I don't know him or your gran - or you." He raised his head and looked Sandie in the eye with a spark of defiance. "I'm not used to it remember? Nobody talks to me."

"No," said Brenda. "And that's wrong too. If we owe Jordan an apology, then we all owe you a hundred apologies."

"Me?' Jason asked unbelievingly.

"Yes you," Brenda replied. "Of course you. Ever since you've been at this school, I, and everyone else, have treated you like shite. I'm not sure how it started, but it ends now. I can't talk for anyone else, but as for me - I'm sorry. I'm sorry for shunning you and ignoring you and everything else. If you're gay, so what? Jordan's gay and he's a nice guy. I'm happy to call him my friend and I hope that we can be friends as well, if you want to be."

"Umm. Yeah." The red-faced boy sat staring at his hands on the table, then he looked up at Brenda and smiled shyly. "Thanks Brenda. I'd really like that," he whispered.

"Me too, Kid." She reached over and squeezed his hand. Both of them were a bit teary-eyed.

"If I can interrupt here," Rachel interrupted. "Hello Jason McDonald. Brenda's right, she was wrong and so was I. I’ve been a right pig to you and I'm really sorry. I even told Jordan not to sit next to you because you're gay, and I'm feeling stupid for that now, and sorry. So, can we start again?"

"Thanks, umm, Rachel. I'd love to start again."

"Me too," said Dawn.

"And me," Nettie agreed. "We're sorry too. Friends?"

"Cool," Jason blushed.

"Just me left then," Sandie said. "I apologise too Jason. I really am sorry. Thanks Jordan. I don't know how you do it, but you've got a talent for sorting people out."

"I dunno about that, Sandie." Jordan glanced back at where the big girl, Janice Carver, was sitting. "Some people would rather be enemies."

"What do you mean?" Sandie followed his gaze. "Oh. Her. Don't worry about Janice, she's just a pig."

"Yeah, Jordan." Brenda agreed. "Some people just need their arses kicked."

"Oh well. I guess you're right. Shame though."

"So, Jason," Nettie changed the subject. "Now we're talking, finally. Tell us about yourself. Got any hunky brothers hidden away somewhere?"

"No," he grinned shyly. "No brothers. None at all."

"Sisters then?" Nettie persisted. "Got any sisters?

"No. No sisters either. Well I did have, I had three sisters, one older, two younger, but my mother took them with her when she split. I haven't seen them in years."

"So she took your sisters and not you? That's a bit rough. Who lives at your house now then?"

"Just me. Me and my dad."

"That'd be cool," said Brenda. "I wish I didn't have to go home to a house full of squabbling kids."

"Hang on a minute." Sandie turned back from greeting her Tommy who'd just joined them. "I thought your dad was never home? He's been seeing our dizzy Aunt Daisy and she's always complaining about how he's always away with his job."Weeks at a time," she says."

"Yeah. He is away a lot, but he's home for five or six days a month, and for holidays too. Though I think he's taking your aunt away for a trip this year - a cruise in the Pacific."

"Without you?"

"Of course without me. They don't want a teenage gooseberry on the love boat."

"And you'll be left home alone?" Sandie queried.

"Yeah. As usual."

"And you're there all by yourself for twenty-five days a month?"

"Yes. Me and the dogs, about that."

"Wow," said Dawn. "That'd be so cool. Twenty-five days, twenty-five nights, with no-one telling you what to do."

"Yeah," Nettie agreed. "You can do what you like, go to bed when you want to, get up when you want. Eat whatever you like, when you like. Man! You've got it made."

"No-one bossing you around," Brenda said. "Peace and quiet, that'd be so great."

Tommy looked hard at him. "So you could party all night and no-one to stop you? I think we might be on to something here. A party-pad. Cool."

"I couldn't have parties." Jason was a bit worried now. "My old man would kill me."

"Oh come on," said Tommy. "He'd never know. He's not there."

"Oh, he'd know all right, he'd find out."

Jordan was not going along with all the others' enthusiasm. "But, who looks after you?"

"What?" Jason bristled. "No-one looks after me. I look after myself. I'm not a baby."

Sandie said, "You do all your own cooking and cleaning and everything?"

"Of course I do. Cooking, cleaning, washing, the lawns and gardens, everything. Have done for years. I'm perfectly capable, and I pay all the bills - with Dad's money."

"So he treats you like an adult," Brenda smiled. "That's so cool."

"No it's not," Jordan insisted. "It's bloody awful. Who talks to you across the kitchen table? Who welcomes you when you come home? Who loves you?"

"My dad does, I guess. When he's home."

"And when he's not? Who do you share your life with then?"

"Nobody. And that's the way I like it. Not everyone lives in a 1950's sit-com family you know."

"Who does?" said Jordan, looking away. "There's not a lot of gayboys in 50's sit-coms."

The big girl, Janice, got up and bulldozed her way out of the hall, shoving several unfortunates aside as she went. Jordan quickly scooped up his stuff and stood up. "I'll see you guys later."

"Jordan?" said Sandie. "What are you doing? You're not going after Janice, are you?"

"No worries, Sandie. There's just something I’ve got to do. See you later."

He left quickly, they all sat and watched him go. "What are you doing, Jordan," said Sandie. "She's a lost cause. Don't worry about her."

"He really must be queer," her boyfriend smirked. "Really queer if he's attracted to her."

"Shut up, Tommy."

Jason looked at the blond and handsome Tommy. He didn't like him at all. He was easy on the eye, but he was a nasty piece of work. He looked over at the door when Jordan had gone. On the other hand, if this Jordan was what he seemed to be, he really was a nice guy. If. He hadn't exactly made a friend of him, had he? Still, he was surrounded by all these chatty girls. Life was looking up.

Over the next few days, things did seem to be looking up. Jason walked home from school and back again each morning with Sandie and Dawn who both lived over at his side of town. They got him to come and join the drama club. He wasn't musical at all, but the teacher, Mrs. Lewis, said that he showed, "great promise", and that he had a real talent for drama.

Maybe he could be an actor? Who knew. He'd had a lot of practice, he'd been playing a role for years.

Jason's life had never been so good. It was perfect, almost. Thanks to Brenda Lynch, or rather, thanks to Jordan Taylor's radical, public, coming out, his status had changed completely.

The group of girls, and some others, and some of their boyfriends even, were making up for lost time, and going over the top in trying to make up for past wrongs. Suddenly it was cool and trendy to be friends with the gayboy.

The drama club was a buzz, he fitted right in there and even he thought that he had a talent for this stuff. From being an outcast and a pariah, Jason suddenly found himself to be popular and busy. He didn't even have much time for drinking, although he didn't give it away completely - things were too good to last.

There was just one fly in the ointment. Well, two really. There still came a time each day when he had to go home to a cold and lonely, empty, house. The other kids had all said that they envied him his freedom, Jordan was the only one who saw it as it really was. Who loved him? Nobody, that's who. Jordan was right, it wasn't cool being left alone for day after day after day. It was horrible. He hated it.

The other bugbear in his life was - Jordan. The boy didn't want to know him. He didn't seem to want to know anyone actually, but in Jason's case it hurt. He would have liked to get to know Jordan, he felt that he owed him. He owed him a lot. His life had changed completely, he had acceptance now. He had company and friendly faces all around him and it was all thanks to Jordan - but he didn't want to know.

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