The Saturday Boy
Chapter 15 - The Deception
I was helping mum and dad clear up the last few glasses from the tables. The pub had been shut for around twenty minutes and it had been a busy night. Roman had gone upstairs to do whatever, I knew that he would never stay down and help us clear up.
"So how is Jack, Joey? I'm sorry I never got chance to ask you, we have been so busy tonight," my dad asked as our paths met.
"Not too good, he knows his mum is dead and he has nowhere to live once his dad goes down for this."
"Poor guy, I feel so sorry for him Joey, I wish there was something we could do."
"Well actually dad I was gonna…"
"Honey, can you put the washer on please the tray is full" my dad called to my mum, pretty much ignoring what I was about to ask. I sighed and walked away from him, deflated. Feeling that I had done all I could down in the bar I wandered upstairs and slumped in one of the sofas.
"What's up with you squirt?" My brother asked, walking into the lounge with a bottle of beer.
"What's up? Is that like a serious question or what?" I snapped
"Whoops, sorry, didn't mean to touch a nerve."
"No, I'm sorry too, it's just, I tried to talk to dad about Jack and he just ignored me and started talking to mum."
"I doubt he ignored you Joey, it's just been a busy night that's all."
"Yeah, well it felt like it."
"Look, why don't you wait until everything is done down there and ask them when they come up. There is no point trying to talk about Jack when they are in the middle of trying to get the place cleared up is there."
"I guess your right Roman I just don't like all this sitting around doing nothing while he's lying there wondering what's gonna happen to him."
"Just be patient, getting in a state over it is not gonna help your case. All that will happen is when you do go to talk to them what you wanna say is all gonna come out wrong and mum and dad are just gonna think you are acting on impulse."
"In a way I am Roman."
"Hmm, well I've given you my advice, it's up to you if you wanna take it or not."
"What advice is that then?" my mum said coming to join us in the lounge followed by my dad. "Man alive, what a night."
"Uh mum, well, erm…"
"Spit it out Joey, It's been a long night and I want to go to bed."
"Well, go to bed then, why don't you all go to fucking bed and not worry about anything else because as long as the pub doors open every fucking day and people spend money and get drunk then nothing else matters in the world. Let em' in, let them all fucking in and they can get smashed and beat up their families and I'll keep changing the barrels and doing all the other fucking shit around here when the person I'm falling in love with is lying in a hospital bed with nowhere to live when he comes out."
"Erm, I'm… I'm gonna head off to bed," Roman said sheepishly while my mum and dad just looked at me with shocked expressions on their faces.
"Honey, are you ok?" My mum asked me, her tone soft and wary.
"Not really," I replied tearing up.
"Son, did you just say that you were falling in love with… with erm…"
"Andy, not now," My mum said to him, no doubt giving him a glare. Yeah, I had just outed myself to my dad in pure frustration, but I didn't care, I was so annoyed, so helpless, so… tired!
"I'm going to bed, I'm sorry I swore," I said rather emotionlessly.
"I'm sorry mum, I just need to sleep."
"Ok well, we'll talk in the morning then, I'll bring you in a cup of tea."
"Thanks, good night."
I left the lounge with my parents still occupying it. I was sure that there would be a brief conversation about my outburst before they went to bed and I just hoped that my mum would explain to my dad what the meaning of what I had said was, rather than me having to have one of those awkward conversations with him.
I closed my door and crashed onto my bed still fully clothed, only just managing to toe my sneakers off before pulling the covers over me. I felt like crying but managed to hold it in wondering what the point would have been. Even crying felt like an effort and I didn't care much for something that was just going to make me think about Jack more than I was.
"Knock knock, can I come in?" The voice of my mum sounded through my closed door.
"Yeah, hey mum, come in." The door slowly opened and she gave me a thoughtful look before entering my room and closing the door behind her.
"Joey, have you even been to sleep, you look terrible."
"I got an hour I think, I was just lying here thinking about…"
"Jack, yeah I know honey, look I'm sorry I didn't give you time to say what you wanted to last night, I was just so tired and it had been a busy night."
"Yeah I know, maybe I was being a bit selfish too, I just wanted someone to listen to me and I didn't think about anyone else at the time."
"Are you going into school? I'm not going to get on your case if you want to stay home today after what's happened with Jack and the lack of sleep you've had."
"If you don't mind then I won't, I really wanted to see Jack today seeing as I have been, and probably will be his only visitor until he gets out of there."
"You can go see him on one condition, and that is you try and get a few hours' sleep before you go. I don't want you getting ill over this Joey."
"Thanks mum, I'll try my best. What's Roman up to today?"
"I'm not sure; do you need him to take you to the hospital?"
"If he didn't mind, yeah."
My mum cupped my head in her hand. "Look, I have to go down to the wholesalers later on today, so if you like I'll take you there. In the meantime, what did you want to discuss last night?"
"Do you want me to just say it, or shall I beat around the bush like I feel like I should do, to explain it better?"
"Just say it, at least I'll understand straight away rather than having to think this early in the morning," She said with a slight grin.
I took in a deep breath and got ready to give her my request of the year. I was nervous, the thought of her saying no too much to think about, but here goes.
"Mum, when Jack gets out of the hospital he will be homeless and I would be really grateful if you and dad would let him stay here for a while until he gets himself sorted. He can work for his keep and he is welcome to stay in my room with me. I think that's how I planned to say it."
The silence that ensued was chocking, and a feeling of dread came over me as I saw my mum's expression change to one of deep thought. I wanted to push her to answer but knew that would be a bad move so I just sat there looking at her. There were instances where she was about to reply but then changed her mind and continued in thought, until finally she spoke.
"There are conditions Joey," my mum uttered, still half thinking.
"Name them, anything, just please don't say no."
"If he's here I still want you at school every day even if he's not. I don't want you involved in the police investigation Joey either, we need to stay out of this, and finally if he's staying in your room you need to be honest with me about what direction your relationship with him is going, because I'm not sure I like the idea of you both sharing if… well you know."
"Oh my god mum, thank you so much." I leapt out of bed and slung my arms round her and kissed her cheek like a hundred times. She chuckled and pushed me away before adding that she still needed to clear it with my dad. I knew that was gonna be ok because my mum was the boss in their relationship so it should be a green light. To say I was ecstatic was a gross understatement. I was so excited I could have pissed my pants there and then but decided it would be better to use the toilet instead.
I got back to my room to find my mum gone and my note pad on my bed with the words DON'T LET ME DOWN scribbled on it by her. I made a mental note to ensure that would not happen. I rushed out of my room and into Roman's who was still fast asleep and jumped on his bed, causing him to sit up in shock.
"What… what is it, are you ok?"
"You never guess what?" I said beaming a smile from ear to ear.
"Mum said yes perhaps?" He said sleepily.
"Yeah Ro, she said yes, I can't believe it, she actually said yes. Oh my god Jack is gonna be so happy."
"Great news Joey, now get out of my room so I can go back to sleep."
I did as he asked and skipped out of his room like some kid that had just won a life supply of chocolate, making a detour to the bathroom again, this time to take a shower. I locked the door and stripped off last night's clothes and turned on the water. I hummed to myself in the mirror while brushing my teeth, killing time while the water warmed up.
Spitting the contents of my mouth out in the sink, I stepped into the cubicle and used the shower water to rinse my mouth, then went to work on cleaning my body. I soaped up my pits and groin area, as usual bringing little Joey to attention, which normally happened when I touched myself. Not wanting to waste a good boner I worked my cock to a climax and spat a load of my jizz up the tiles, watching as it washed away down the plug hole. Sometimes it was nice when a wank didn't take long. Some wanks were for just for relief or to flush the tubes, while others were reserved for people like Jack, I thought.
I finished washing up and stepped out of the shower to dry myself, vigorously rubbing the towel through my hair creating quite a cool style all on its own. My hair had started to get long and it was quite unusual for me to leave this long before cutting to be honest, but Jack had made an off the cuff remark that it looked cute, so that might have something to do with the reason why I had not frequented the Barber as of yet.
My mum had wanted me to get some sleep before seeing Jack but I was buzzing, I was in such a lively and happy mood there was no way I was going to be able to sleep with all these good feelings running through my head. I decided to just lie on my bed and put the TV on hoping that it would take my mind off Jack, and make me a little sleepy. After all, I had literally only got an hours sleep before my mum came into talk to me, and I knew that if I didn't sleep soon I was gonna pay the price later on when I would be needed to do my usual after school chores in the cellar.
"So I guess this means that I'm gonna have to listen to you two fucking like rabbits when he gets better then?" Roman asked, appearing in my doorway.
"Roman you are so crass sometimes you know that?" I replied, putting a disgusted look on my face.
"So how did she react when you asked her?"
"It was painful Ro, she sat there in silence for at least two minutes before telling me it would be ok."
"Well I'm pleased for you, looks like you got what you needed to hear, you look much happier this morning."
"I am mate, It's been a hellish night and I didn't know what I was gonna do if she had said no."
"Joey, I don't think she really could have, seeing as she feels responsible in a small way for what happened."
"Really, why would she think that?"
"Well your little speech the other day didn't help, especially the bit where you said blood was on her hands and all."
"Shit, yeah I remember. I shouldn't have said that should I?"
"Not really Joey, it was kinda cruel, but look at it this way, your emotional blackmail may have just got you the decision about Jack you needed, so it's not all bad hey?" he said, a sly grin forming quickly on his face.
"So, when they release him, do you think it would be ok if you came and help me collect him?"
"You mean, you help me collect him, since I'm the one with the car?"
"Whatever, so will you do it?"
"Well since you are in such a good mood, and I hate it when you're not, then yeah ok, I'll do it."
"Thanks Ro, This really means a lot to me."
"Yeah I know. Oh hey, I've been meaning to ask since I got back. How are Hinge and Bracket, you haven't mentioned them, they doing ok?"
"Shaun and Dean? Haha, yeah they are fine. Shaun is gay you know, came out on our camping trip."
"Get the fuck out of here, Joey!"
"It's true, and yeah I was a bit surprised but it's all come out nonetheless."
"Fuck me Joey; I never had him down for liking dick."
"Roman Cork, watch the words you are using in this house please." My mum said, walking past my bedroom. Roman dipped his head as if he was about to get slapped.
"Sorry mum," he called to her before turning back to face me, now speaking in a quitter tone. "So have you and him…"
"No way, he's my friend, that kinda makes it a little too weird."
"So how did you find out, or rather what made him out himself?"
"He was after Jack I think, and I was getting suspicious."
"Hmm, that could have been a good three-way, had you let it be."
"Roman! Jeez, you really like all this don't you."
"I find it… fascinating," he said, with extra emphasis on the last word.
"I'm sure you do, so how are things in your love life?"
"What love life," he said with a tinge of sadness in his voice.
"What, no girl in your life?"
"If I had, she would be here, and no, after Donna shit on me I'm going solo for a while. Girls can be such bitches sometimes."
"Well you could always come over to the dark side if things are that bad."
"Yeah well, when I get that desperate I'll come see you for tips, but until then I'll stick to pussy." We both laughed and hugged, god I loved my brother's hugs!
I had managed to get a couple of hours sleep after Roman left my room and it could have possibly been longer if my cell had not woken me up. I looked at the screen and saw it was Shaun. It was just gone twelve so I assumed he was at lunch wondering where I was.
"Hey Shaun, yeah I'm not in school as you may have guessed."
"Hi Joey, yeah I was starting to wonder where you were today. Dean said he hadn't seen you either so I'm guessing you're sick again?"
"No not exactly Shaun, it's kind of a long story. Listen why don't you come by the pub on your way home, there are some things I need to tell you, bring Dean if he can make it too."
"Is everything ok?"
"I think so but I would rather talk to you both in person."
"Is it about Jack and the whole murder thing?"
"Yeah how did you know?
"Its on the news, the school made an announcement today, but obviously didn't say the full story, just said Jack would be off for a while."
"Yeah he's in hospital," I said.
"Really, oh, I didn't know, anyway gotta go."
Shaun agreed to come over and said he would collect Dean if he could make it too. But there was something not quite sitting right with my call to Shaun. He seemed eager to get off the phone when I mentioned Jack was in hospital, but then again, Shaun had been acting weird for a while now, so I just put it to the back of my mind.
I was planning to go over to the hospital with my mum when she was ready to leave for the wholesalers and I knew I would need to be back for about three thirty to meet Shaun and Dean. This prompted me to go and see what time she would be leaving as I really wanted to spend at least two hours with Jack before leaving him again.
My mum was in the pub kitchen making a list of all the things we needed when I walked in. "Hey mum, what time are you thinking of leaving today?"
"Desperate to see Jack are we?"
"Is it that obvious?"
"Yes," She said grinning. "I just need to finish this list and then I'll run you over to the hospital. Do you need me to pick you up on the way back?"
"How long do you think you will be?"
"About an hour and a half."
"Hmm, let me see how the visit goes, I was planning to stay for two hours. Shaun and Dean are coming over here to see me before I start work in the cellar if that's ok?"
"Sure honey, just make sure you are up straight with all your jobs at some point tonight."
"Don't worry I will be. I take it the beer order has come in?"
"Yes, your father has dealt with it and all the empties have been taken away. You will need to roll the new ones in as well tonight; I don't want them in the warm to long."
"No problem. So can we go now, can we?"
"Yes, just hold one a minute I'm almost done. Look you haven't even got any shoes on so how can you be ready to leave." I looked down at my feet. The anticipation of seeing Jack was making me lose my most basic faculties. I ran upstairs and pulled on my sneakers and was back downstairs before my mother had even noticed I had gone, I suspected.
"Ok, I'm ready, ready when you are, to go, to go now, like immediately." I squealed like a desperate weirdo
"Jesus you have it bad," my mother muttered to herself more than me, as she completed her list. But what the fuck, she was right, I did have it bad.
"Right all done," she blurted, and we both left the kitchen.
The drive over to the hospital was a nervous one for me. I hoped Jack was still ok and able to talk. I wanted so bad to give him the good news about living with us and I was suddenly afraid he would be pumped up on pain meds and sedatives to the point where he was not with enough to speak or think.
"Will you please stop jogging your knee up and down, it's driving me up the bloody wall," mum yelled at me.
"Sorry, I'm just a little nervous."
"Yes, and your nervousness is making me feel sick, honestly, it's like being on a boat in here."
"Did you manage to speak to dad?" I asked, changing the subject.
"About what?" she asked, appearing confused.
"About Jack staying here." I said, perplexed she may have forgotten.
"Oh right yeah, its fine." She said, nonchalantly.
"Did you ask him or tell him?" I asked, suspicious.
"Oh Joey, I told him of course, it's better not to let your father try and make a decision, believe me it can be quite dangerous you know."
"Well that's a relief, so what did he say?"
"He said that as long as it didn't interfere with your school or your work here then he was fine with it. We also talked a little about your admission last night and I have explained to him that you have feelings for Jack and that if he needs to talk to me about it I'll be there to listen, he seems fine with it though. He might not understand it, but it hasn't freaked him out."
"Hmm, well that's good. But how come you are so cool with it all, it's like I have told you I have a wisdom tooth growing rather than I was gay."
"Pfft, like I didn't see that one coming Joey. I'm just surprised it took you so long to tell me."
"You… you mean you knew?" I asked, gobsmacked.
"Joey, a mother always knows. I might look like I'm not really involved in your life, but believe me I am, and I always make time to ensure you are ok, even if I don't look like I am."
"Fuck… Sorry, I mean, how long…how long have you known?"
"Oh I don't know Joey, what a silly question. I just had a feeling that's all. The lack of girls, the little things you would say, the TV programmes you would watch. Oh and the porn I found on your dad's laptop two weeks ago sort of put the final piece of the puzzle into place, I guess."
"Shit, I thought I erased that."
"Well you should have, I was about to go and ask your dad if he was seeing another man, before thinking it might have something to do with you."
"It could have been Roman."
"Roman hasn't been here, and anyway you've admitted it now so don't try and pass it off as not being you." She said, giving me an over the glasses look.
"Well, you got me there."
"And Joey, just so you know, I don't care ok, its fine. You like whoever makes you happy. I just worry about you and Jack that's all, you are both so young, and…"
"He's good for me mum, I dunno if you understand that but he's like the missing link in my life."
"I dunno how to explain it to you. It's like for a while now I have always felt like there was something missing, that I wasn't complete in some way. It was like I was constantly yearning for some sort of object that might not have existed, that sort of feeling."
"I think I understand."
"Yeah well since I have found Jack, or rather now I have found how I feel about him, that feeling has gone away. Maybe I've been this way forever but never knew what it was… I was."
"You mean gay?"
"I guess. I always thought I liked girls. I mean I did, do maybe, but I have never been mad over them, not like Dean, or Roman for instance."
Before I knew where we were my mum was pulling into the hospital grounds and bringing the car to a stop in a space she found. "Now remember, call me if you need picking up, or you'll need to get the tube home. Like I said, I'll be around an hour and a half."
"Thanks mum," I replied leaning over to give her a kiss on the cheek. I got out of the car and waited until she pulled onto the road before making my way into the main entrance. Walking up to the main desk I was greeted by a young woman who asked if she could help me.
"Is Jack Stanton still on the same ward I asked," not wanting to go on some wild goose chase looking for him should he have been moved.
"Just let me check for you young man," she said, beginning to tap away on her computer. "I have a Jack Stanton on Churchill ward."
"Yes that's him, thank you."
"Do you know the way?"
"Yes I do, thank you for your help." I said leaving the desk and heading towards the lift. I began to tremble, my stomach in knots thinking about seeing him again. What he had been through just seemed to amplify my feelings towards him. I wanted to nurse him, to take care of him, and to see that his life got better after years of abuse at the hands of his evil poisonous father. I was gonna make damn sure no one ever hurt him again.
I stepped out of the lift and went through the process of putting that disgusting gin smelling substance on my hands before walking through the ward doors. I made my way to the small desk to find a young male nurse sitting at the computer.
"Can I help you?" He said smiling up at me.
"Yes, I'm here to visit Jack Stanton?"
"No problem, if you could wait a few minutes the consultant is with him at the moment going over a few things, you can take a seat over there and I'll let you know when you can go in," He said pointing to a row of four chairs opposite his desk. I went and sat down, clasping my hands together trying to rid some of the anxiousness from my body. My shirt was sticking to my back as I had begun to perspire. It always happened when I got nervous and I was worried I would start getting sweat patches if it carried on, and we all know sweat patches are hardly attractive.
Sitting with my eyes closed I tried to do some long breathing exercises like I had seen on some TV program. Breath in for ten seconds, hold for five seconds, breath out for ten seconds, hold for five seconds. I played out in my mind. I'm not sure if it helped but at least it passed the time as I was taken from my thoughts to the voice of the young guy telling me I could now go and see Jack.
"Mr Stanton is in the last room on the left, please go down when you are ready," he said with a smile. I pretty much leapt off the chair and hurriedly made my way towards his room before stopping short and almost having a panic attack. Shit, what do I say first? Do I let him talk, do I just tell him about what happens when he gets out of here, will he wanna see me? Question after question raced through my battered brain. I wiped my clammy hands down my jeans and pressed down on the handle of the thick teak veneered door. It creaked quietly and I wandered inside.
Jack had been facing away from me up until the point where I opened the door, but he immediately turned his head to face me and our eyes locked.
"Hey Champ, said I would come back didn't I?"
"Joey, what are you doing here, you should be in school, and I thought you were coming later?"
For a second I looked at him slightly confused, Later? When did I say that? I thought
"What are you my dad?" I said instead trying to lighten the mood.
"No but, you really shouldn't be making such a fuss over me, you have your own life to lead." I don't know why but that comment hurt, and hurt bad. I tried not to let it show on my face, but if I didn't know better I would say he was trying to reject me.
"Jack, I'm here for you," I said, sounding rather pathetic.
"To do what?"
"Just to… I dunno, I thought you might need someone, I thought you might need me?"
"You're a good friend Joey, and thanks for coming to see me, I'm sorry. I think it's the drugs they have me on."
"Friend? Is that what we are, friends?"
"Of course Joey, what else would we be?"
"Well I… I dunno but?" Jack was just looking at me waiting for me to finish. What the fucking hell planet was he on? I felt embarrassed all of a sudden. It was like I was talking to a different person.
"Joey, are you ok?"
"Yes, I'm fine, " I replied softly. "Uh, do you need anything before I go?"
"Before you go?… Joey you just got here."
"I know but I feel kind of stupid and I don't think we're on the same page here. I feel like a fool and maybe it would be better if I just went and left you to it."
"Joey, what have I said, you were fine when you walked in, what's happened, please sit down and talk to me."
I went and sat in the chair by his bed and looked at my lap before lifting my head to look at him. He was staring into my eyes expectantly, probably wondering if I have just lost my mind.
"Have you not thought about us?"
"Us?" he said, wearing a confused look.
I got up again, frustrated, and went over to the window. "Yeah us, Jack," I snapped staring out of it.
"But you don't want there to be an us Joey."
"Well I thought you may have done last night but then Shaun came and…"
"Sorry, Shaun, what's Shaun got to do with this?"
"Well he said you would be coming in later but apparently you had told him that it would be better in light of what happened we didn't go any further and just remain friends. Anyway it was something like that, my mind is still a bit fuzzy, but I do get it and I won't push the matter."
"Push the matter, what the fuck is going on? Shaun was at school today, he called me from school on his lunch, he doesn't even know that your here."
"Joey I may have taken a hit to the head but I assure you Shaun was here today. It was around twelveish, I know because that's when I get my pain med top up."
"Sorry take me through this again, I'm not getting it."
"Shaun came up here and said the school had made an announcement that I would not be attending for a while due to a family bereavement, but said that most people knew what had happened because it was on the local news, you know, about my dad and shit. He then said that he would see if I could come and stay with him until I could get a place of my own from the state. He said that you would probably be coming in later to see me but you had told him that we could never be anything more than friends because of what had happened and that it was too complicated for you. Like I said, I may have got a few things confused but that was the gist of it."
"Jack, I haven't even spoken to Shaun, not until he phoned me today and that was around half twelve."
"I'm sorry everything is just so confusing right now, I can't think straight. But… but I'm sure he was still here then, and he only left to go to the toilet. He went back to school about ten to one, I think so how could he call you?"
"Well I don't know, but I'm not making it up,"
"Well anyway Joey, I'm sorry you don't feel the same way I do, I know a lot of shit had happened and…"
I didn't give him chance to finish as my lips connected with his. I pushed my tongue in and explored his mouth. It took a while for him to respond but I'm guessing that was because my move was the last thing he expected, thanks to fucking Shaun!
"I beg to differ," I said pulling away. "I hope that convinces you that I do feel the same way, and that Shaun is a fucking dead man!" Jack just looked at me, eyes wide.
I just sat there trying to digest what I had just heard. There were many lines in the sand I had drawn for Shaun lately, many things I had forgiven him for… him and Dean. But this… this was a fucking deception so low it made me grind my teeth in anger.
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