The Saturday Boy
Chapter 20 - Confronting the Worst Day of My Life (Part 2)
"So, you finally decided to show your face," Shaun asked, wearing a disgusted expression.
At first I didn't respond to him, I was too busy checking out the damage I had done to his good looks. Shaun was lying on his bed, his face badly bruised. I noticed his eyes the most; they were tainted in a shade of purple and black, probably the side effect of a broken nose I assumed. His lip, although still fat, had crusted over now and had started to heal. I viewed him with pity, but still with a tinge of anger, after all what he did, was still what he did!
"I'm here because I have to be Shaun." I replied, folding my arms and leaning on his door frame.
"Get a good look at what you did to me, your best friend; make you feel good did it?"
I chuckled falsely. "Oh Shaun, don't you talk to me about friendship, I don't think you know the meaning of the word."
"So if we are no longer friends, why are you standing in my doorway?"
"Because I have to apologise for what I did to you, it's part of my prison sentence. So Shaun, I am sorry for assaulting you and for being a good friend to you. I hope you have enjoyed shitting over me."
"You think I've enjoyed these last few weeks?"
"I don't know… I don't know what's been going through that head of yours Shaun. What I do know is you have betrayed me on a level I never thought possible from my worst enemy, let alone someone who I thought was my best friend."
"And so did you Joey, look at my face!" Shaun barked, pointing at himself.
"I gave you so many chances, so many opportunities to be honest with me, and even when I thought you were being honest with me it turns out to be another lie, another game. You might argue that what I did to you was over the top, and yeah maybe it was but I deserved better from you Shaun."
"Jack's the problem here, ever since he came along it's like you are a different person."
"No I'm not, I'm the same person I've always been," I retorted.
"You've become obsessed by him Joey, everyone can see it, even Dean."
"Obsessed by him, that's rich coming from you. What about all the secret meetings with him at school, calling me to see if I'd seen him, telling him stuff that was between us."
"He listened when you didn't."
"Shaun, he listened but as he's told me, you never made any sense. I mean what exactly did he listen to? You trying to pull us apart, you wanting to get into his pants, or you trying to get into mine?"
"Yours?" he said, raising a brow.
"Makes sense don't it?"
I scratched my head furiously. "Well tell the big picture then Shaun; let's hear it."
"What big picture?"
"You know, your big plan, your end game… what is it you have been trying to achieve with all this weird behaviour."
"There is no end game Joey, I think this is all in your head."
"Stop with the mind games Shaun, it's gone on long enough. Please don't sit there and tell me that everything you have been doing and saying to different people is what would be considered normal."
"I don't know what you are talking about."
"Oh so I have to spell it out do I? Ok, well let's see. Tell me why you went to the hospital and told Jack that I would prefer me and him to just be friends… Yeah, that's quite a fucked up one, so we'll start with that."
"I don't remember ever being at the hospital."
"Shaun, for fuck sake just stop this, be honest, this is your chance, maybe your last one. Just PLEASE tell me the truth. I know you were there, stop lying!"
"Ok I was there!" he hissed, "Happy?"
"No, I wanna know why you were there, and why you said those things."
"Because I can't stand looking at you two together ok, it makes me sick. I've fancied him for fucking ages, never being able to say anything because as far as everyone knew I was straight, and then what happens, you burst out the fucking closet and who do you end up with… of all the people you end up with it had to be him."
"You kept that from me, why did you never say anything, we talked about everything?" I asked. I was astonished by his outburst and my face probably confirmed it as my jaw was now on the ground. His outburst must have really triggered some emotion as I eyed him tearing up.
"I've lived a lie my whole life Joey."
"So how long…when you say ages, how long have you liked him for?"
"Two years! Fucking hell, two years, and you never said anything?"
"What was I supposed to say, how did I know how you would react, you were straight, and my best friend, I didn't wanna lose that. I didn't wanna lose anything, and then when you came out to me I thought, wow, now I can finally pluck up the courage to tell you about me, and how I really liked Jack. But no, at about the same time it was becoming obvious that you liked him as well and… and you were getting closer to him… I panicked!"
"Because I thought if you were gay and cool with me being gay then I could make a move with him, but you started getting in the way, and then at the camping trip it finally became clear that you and him were something more… more than I could deal with, that's when it really started to get messy. I got in too deep, I was desperate, and I'm sorry ok, I'm sorry for all of it!"
"But… but you said you were ok with Jack and me… I remember, you said it was cool and you didn't mind."
"It fucking killed me Joey if I'm honest. I tried to back off like I promised you, but you never knew how much I liked him, not really. I mean, yeah, I admitted to you that I liked him, but you will never understand how much, for how long, and how hard it was to keep a secret like that. I thought I could deal with it, thought I could get over it, but it was eating away at me."
"So that's when you started the silly games?"
"You seem to favour that word game, but to me they were not games, they were me trying to… well I don't know, but in my mind it was not a game I was playing."
"Surely you must have known I was going to find out what you were up to?"
"I think I did deep down, but I didn't care, I had no choice, I just didn't want to lose him."
"Shaun, you never had him, even when I had my suspicions that this was what you were up to, Jack told me… he told me that he wasn't interested in you."
"You really enjoy saying that don't you, go on, rub a bit more salt into the wound!"
"I didn't mean it like that, I'm just trying to figure out that if I knew he didn't fancy you, why you didn't, maybe then all of this could have been avoided. I mean did you actually get to the point of telling him your feelings?"
"Not directly no, but thanks for making his clear to me, Joey!" Shaun spat. Ok it was kind of cruel to word things that way but I wanted him to know there was no future between them; he needed to know, for all our sakes. It was damage limitation.
"And the Spanish kid?"
"What about him?" Shaun asked, looking at me concerned. Yeah that's right another lie, I thought, looking at him.
"Well you put on this big fanfare to me that you had slept with him, yet you told Jack you hadn't, which was it? Was you lying to me, or lying to Jack?" Shaun's eyes left me as he focused his view on a spot of no significance.
"I lied to Jack."
"But why?" I asked, passionately.
"Because I didn't want him to think I just slept around with random guys, it's hardly a good selling point is it."
"Then why the hell did you tell him about the guy, I mean you didn't even need to mention it to Jack."
"Because I thought you had already told him, so I rushed in and thought of a story to say it wasn't true that I had screwed him."
"Shaun, I never said anything to Jack about the Spanish kid, that was between us. Jesus I thought you had enough respect for me to know what we discuss stays between us."
"Like I said earlier Joey, you've changed, for all I knew Jack was aware of all our secrets."
"So you offered him information not even knowing he knew about it, nice one Shaun. Well I can't take the blame for that, can I."
"Yeah ok I fucked up there, rub that in as well, why don't you!"
"Shaun I take no pleasure in this conversation one bit, but I think it's important we have it because I'm about to go nuts you have screwed my head up so much. So, just to clarify, you spoke to Jack about our holiday in Grand Canaria, then what?"
"Well you apparently told him about the Spanish kid anyway, so I worried you told him about our episode."
"Shaun, fuck… I told Jack we played volleyball with him and that he wrote me a letter; I didn't tell him you screwed him for fuck sake." I said, exasperated.
"Well like I said, I didn't know that did I?"
I sighed. "Ok next question, why did you tell Jack this was all about sounding me out, his words, not mine."
"It was a decoy; I wanted to see his reaction. I made it look like I had feelings for you to see if he would reveal any feelings he had for me."
"And did he?"
"You know he didn't Joey because like you said, he doesn't fancy me. It backfired, it was a stupid idea, and I just ended up walking away feeling like a fool."
I looked at Shaun as his whole plan unravelled, he looked broken. His sad and bruised face advertised how much this had taken out of him and I felt suddenly sad for him. He was lost from the result of being discovered. It was the end of the war it felt like, with Shaun the commander of a defeated army. But this wasn't about winning or losing, it was about the truth. The truth that he never told either me or Jack, and for that he ended up hurting everyone.
"Deception, double deception, the lies, the games, sacrificing our friendship… Shaun, why the hell didn't you just come and talk to me, honestly?"
"I don't know, like I said earlier, there were hurdles and before I knew it, it had all just got way out of control," He replied shaking his head. I saw a tear drop from his bowed head on to his chest and I had to wipe away one of my own.
Although I felt really sad I couldn't help let out a small chuckle as I wiped my wet eyes. Shaun looked up at me confused.
"What's funny?" He asked, softly.
"Nothing really, I was just thinking about how certain Jack was about you fancying me, and I actually believed him."
"You? Pfft, no way, that would be incest," he said, a little wry smile appearing on his face.
"Yeah, it did seem a bit way out there."
"So what happens now?" Shaun asked, seriousness returning to his battered face.
I let out a long sigh. "I don't know Shaun; it's a lot to take in."
"Well, if it means anything, I helped convince my mum to drop the charges against you, me and your mum, I will add"
"You had something to do with that?"
"Yeah, despite what you did, I felt kind of guilty about the whole thing and I know in some way I was to blame."
"Well thank you, whatever you did worked. I know it was wrong, and all I can say is, what you saw that day… well it wasn't me, at least not the me I know."
"Yeah, I know. Maybe I deserved it, who knows."
"No, it was wrong, I'm not violent Shaun you know that, I just felt backed in to a corner and I lashed out."
"Hmm, so when are you going to tell Jack?"
"About what?" I asked, confused.
"Well he's the one we've been fighting over, maybe it would be best if we cut him loose." Shaun said, shrugging his shoulders. To say I was astounded by his comment would have been a gross understatement.
"Cut… What the hell do you mean?"
"Oh C'mon Joey, ever since he came on the scene our lives have been shit, we've been fighting, things have gone wrong. I just think if we got him out of the picture, things would go back to normal."
"Normal… out of the picture… Shaun, have you not learned anything from our conversation?"
"Then let me make it clear, I am not walking away from Jack, I am not going to do that to a guy I'm in love with."
"Don't say you're in love with him, don't say that!"
"Well I am, and you better get used to it."
"I won't do it Joey, I can't watch you with him, I can't… Joey please, you gotta get rid of him."
"Shaun, can you hear yourself, you sound like some crazy dude."
"I'm sorry, Joey please I'm begging you, don't put me through this, please Joey, please."
"Shaun, you are freaking me out now," I said, as he got up and was now hanging on my arm. It was as if he was begging for his life."
"Joey, you can't be with him, not if I can't, I won't let this happen."
"Did I bang you on the head harder than I thought… what the fuck Shaun? Jack and I will be whatever he wants us to be. You might be upset about that, but I won't let you come between us. If he liked you then things might have been different, but he doesn't so why are you hell bent on ruining this for me? Jesus, I was actually on the verge of giving you another chance after you finally told the truth, and then you blindside me with this crazy shit."
"What… what if I didn't tell the truth, what If I was lying to you. Yeah, I made it all up Joey… I made it all up."
"You desperate fucking asshole, you are one sick, sick puppy Shaun. I'm going now, I need to paint your damn fence. Just stay away from me." I barked, walking out of his room.
"I can still have those charges pressed against you Joey." He called out. I stopped, and headed back to his room.
"Not even you would go that low," I growled, in a low and slow voice.
"I will if I have to Joey, stay away from Jack, and I won't, I promise. All you have to do is stay away from him."
"You need help Shaun, and I pity you, do you know that? Yeah pity… I'm not even angry at you anymore. You talked about me being obsessed with Jack? Fuck me, I haven't got anything on you."
"So you're willing to give up on our friendship for a fuck?"
"You gave up on our friendship when you screwed me over Shaun, and you're still doing it, even now."
"I'm gonna ask you one more time Joey, please stay…"
"No Shaun, I'm not listening anymore. I love him ok; get over it, if you can't then stay out of the way of us. No, in fact stay away from us anyway. I don't want a friend like you, your fucking mental Shaun, mad as a hatter."
"Dean will side with me you know."
"Dean, oh so that's your next move is it, to turn Dean against me. How far Shaun, how far will you go?"
"As far as I need to. I'm not going to let you take away the only person I have ever truly had feelings for."
"Shaun, get it through your thick skull, he doesn't like you like that."
"That's because you have got in the way of him finding out, I'm sure he does like me, its just gonna take time. I need to convince him that's all."
"I'm going Shaun, you are sending me mental just standing here listening to this."
"Don't you walk away from me Joey!" He screamed, like a scorned woman.
"Or what Shaun, you gonna hit, me, go on then get it out of your system, you twisted fuck, take your best shot, C'mon, do it, do it, DO IT!" I screamed at him back. You ooze desperation on a scale never seen by the fucking world Shaun, you…"
"I'll fuck it up for you, Swear me down I will make sure you and him can never be happy."
"Why, so you can just sail off into the sunset while I rot here, my fucking parents helping me along the way."
"You told them, not me."
"I have nothing, and you have everything Joey, we're friends, aren't you gonna help me?"
"Help you… I can't even fucking look at you. I'm going, I have to go, I'm going, now!"
I tried to leave, but Shaun kept pulling at me. I managed to push him off and started walking down the stairs. Shaun's mother came through and stood at the bottom, asking us what was going on."
"Your son is fucking mental, fuck the fence, fuck him and fuck your punishment. Press charges if you want, but get him some help first. Him and his fucking desperate games, you and you're fucked up views on gay people. I'm leaving now because I refuse to stay in a fucked up house full of fucked up people, now get out of my way. Oh and by the way…I'm gay Mrs Winters, why don't you call my mum and ask her to send me to a specialist, I might need fixing."
I barged past her and out of the door. Shaun came running down the stairs screaming at me in the street. I suddenly remembered I had not text Roman, and I really should have. I had a feeling things were going too smoothly when I got there.
I now had Shaun's mum shouting at me for swearing at her. It was quite comical actually, that was until Shaun grabbed me and threw me to the floor. I got up ready to hit him again, but decided that would be a dumb idea. I needed this to happen, what they were doing and saying only pushed the tide of support towards me.
Moments later a car came screeching round the corner, it was Roman's. He pulled up sharply and I knew he had witnessed everything that had happened in the street. Mrs Winters was still yelling at me, and Shaun was pulling at my clothes. Roman got out and pushed him off me.
"Joey, get the fuck in the car," he screamed at me.
"But Roman, I didn't…"
"Joey, just get in the car," he demanded again. I did as he asked, the act being made easier by Roman pushing Shaun off me.
"Shaun, do yourself a favour. Take your mum inside, and step away from me." Roman barked. But Shaun was in no mood for orders as he tried to take a swing at my brother. I unbuckled my seatbelt and dived out of the car to assist him.
"JOEY! Stay in the fucking car."
"I'm not just gonna sit here and watch him throw punches at you." I cried, stamping my foot on the road.
"I can handle it, just get back in," Roman said, looking between me and Shaun. "Mrs Winters, get your son under control or I will call the police this time."
"Don't you order me about young man, who do you think you are?" She squealed.
"I am trying to defuse a bad situation, Look I don't want no trouble and nor does Joey, just take Shaun inside and we will go," pleaded my brother, as Shaun got up and tried to take another swing at him. "Shaun I am really going to put you on the floor if you don't stop making a fool of yourself. Just go inside and calm down."
"What so he can have Jack?"
"Shaun, I will not have you discuss homosexual matters in the street," Shaun's mum cried out.
Roman took his opportunity while she was arguing with her son to get in his car and drive us away. I looked back watching Shaun running after the car screaming obscenities before collapsing in the street and hitting the road with his fist, sobbing. I saw his mother coming towards him but then we turned if to a different street and my view was cut off.
"Roman I swear I didn't…"
"I know, I saw it all, I hung around because I didn't hear from you."
"Ro, he's gone mental, I mean actually mental."
"It did look that way I must admit."
"I think he's had a breakdown, he's just coming out with all this stuff about… man I was actually getting scared up there."
"Its gonna be ok, I'll let mum know what happened, she'll know what to do."
"Uh, well it's not quite as simple as that."
"Oh fuck Joey, what have you done?"
"I kinda lost it with his mother, and said some stuff."
"What stuff?" asked Roman, taking his eyes off the road to look at me.
"Well it went something like… Your son is fucking mental, fuck the fence, fuck him and fuck your punishment."
Roman rolled his eyes and banged his head on the steering when making the horn honk. I just stayed quiet, knowing once again I should have just kept my mouth shut seeing it was getting me in to trouble lately.
"Oh Joey, when are you going to learn?"
"I'm sorry, he was just on my case and going crazy on me, and then his mum got involved and…"
"Look, I'll do what I can, but if she decides to press charges then there's nothing me, mum or you can do about that."
"I know, and I'll take the hit as you said. You wanna know something though?"
"I don't know, do I?"
"It felt fucking good saying it to the old hag though."
"Yeah, I'll bet," Roman replied and we both burst out laughing as we drove towards the pub
Back at the pub, Roman and I walked in the double doors and past my mum serving someone. She eyed me, a look of concern on her face, before whispering to Christie and then following us upstairs. I went into the lounge and sat down, I knew she was close behind and was ready for whatever was coming my way. Roman also sat down; I think he wanted to be there to set the record straight just in case Mrs Winters had called our mum.
"Your home early, and I wondered why, and then I realised the phone call I just had with Mrs Winters. I said no, Joey wouldn't let me down again, he wouldn't make me out to look a fool, and you know what, I realised that's exactly what you've done."
"Mum, hear Joey out, I think you'll find it wasn't his fault."
"Not his… Roman he said the F word about ten times in one sentence to Mrs Winters, didn't stick to his arrangement and bellowed at her in the street. I'm sorry, am I missing something here? Because that says everything to me that it's his fault."
"She was shouting at him, he remained calm and handled it well, I saw it all."
"You boys… Jesus you boys, what am I gonna do with you. Joey, you really want me to come and visit you in prison."
"Mum, I don't think it will come to that," I said.
"Oh you think so huh, with your temper?"
"Mum Roman already told you, I didn't do anything, it was Shaun, he went mental. I even apologised like I was supposed to, and I actually meant it."
"Then why did you swear at his mum?"
"Because she knows he's gay and she hates gays, she is sending him to a specialist to get him fixed and I… well not that I care, I think he needs help to be honest, but not that kind of help."
"Fix him, what do you mean?"
"Like turn him not gay."
"What? That's ridiculous, she actually said that?"
"Dean told me, that's what she told Shaun when she found out."
"Send him to see a specialist, because he's gay."
"Yeah, and I got annoyed, that with everything I had to listen to from Shaun."
"Ok, time out." My mum said, falling back on to the sofa Roman was occupying. "Right, you stay away from Shaun's house and his mum, I don't want you going around there anymore."
"Gladly." I said, causing a smile from Roman.
"You are still grounded though young man. No matter what Shaun said, or the views of his mother, strange as they are, it does not give you an excuse to hit another human being. I did not bring my sons up to be violent."
"No problem mum, just don't make have to go near that psycho house again."
"Funny, I never had Shaun down as coming from that sort of family, even though you did tell me she hated gay people," she mused before getting up.
"Can I go see Jack now?" I asked, before she left the room
"I guess, just be back by seven. You need to eat something and then I want you back down in that cellar, the place is a mess"
"Want me to run you?" Roman asked.
"Sure," he said, getting up from the sofa.
I got up and followed him out, the realisation coming over me that I had did it. Yeah it was bad, it was hard, and it was heavy, but I had confronted and gotten through… the worst day of my life.
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