For Your Eyes Only
by Eliot Moore
Chapter 12 (May 2007)
Sunday at 10:45 I was on the railroad tracks bisecting the park watching Glyn bounding down the spring-green slope on the north with my heart in my throat. Glyn had paused when he reached Meighen Street and saw me waiting; he waved and then quickened his pace. I could see the Fleming smile and dreaded the moment when he reached me.
Against all odds, Pino and I had managed to untangle ourselves eventually and we returned to the task Peter had set me. It took time. We paused to talk about most everything but what would happen next. Looking back, I don’t think my mind turned to practicalities until later, after Pino had declined a shower and decided it was too close to supper to go out with me. We didn`t kiss goodbye, I suppose that sort of intimacy would have been too intense a parting gesture for the novices we were. We stood grinning like fools just out of arm`s reach and then Pino bounced down the street towards the park. I had my shower and then lay down on the couch to think.
It took me seven years to recognize the closet I was in. I gave no more thought about stepping out of it than I suppose most fourteen-year-olds would. Glyn had suggested I had weight in the school, but I was a feather against the tornado my coming out would generate. At that moment, my closet comfortably fit two and I saw no reason to change that. I invited Pino into my closet. I could dismiss my friends for the time being; except perhaps Glyn. When I should have been relaxing on the couch dreaming of Pino, I found myself worrying about the closest person to the boy I loved.
Peter stopped in late to check on my work. He walked through the third floor room with my dad and they agreed our work would do. I should have been pleased when Peter mentioned my idea of renovating the second floor of the store. My mind was on other things. Pino and I talked in the evening and then when we exhausted ourselves I nerved myself to speak to Glyn. He happily agreed to come over Sunday morning.
Glyn slammed my shoulder with his and grinned at me when he reached the dividing line of track. He was clearly puzzled why I had chosen to meet him halfway. “What`s up Si?” I stepped away from him to give myself some space and time to think. He must have thought I had a destination in mind and began following me. Feeling pursued, I led him down the track for fifteen paces or about the length of time it took me to choose my first words. I turned on him and he stopped abruptly.
“I’m gay.” This was met with silence but Glyn’s face reflected the magnitude of my disclosure. I felt a sudden anger that life had left me so vulnerable and that it might take Glyn away from me. I bore back down on Glyn challenging him to respond to my words. At the last moment he stepped aside taking a glancing blow as our shoulders reconnected. He turned to watch me as I nervously paced back the way I had come. When I stopped, I buried my trembling fists in my pockets and confronted him again. “I love James.”
I stared defiantly at Glyn, suddenly conscious of the tears streaming down my face. His face softened and he gave a small nod. All I could do was stand there, frozen in place waiting. He glanced away to where I suppose Pino might have been and then looked down at the ballast at his feet. “Yeah, I know Si.” I tried to rub the flow away but it only seemed to increase. The enormity of it all was oppression for both of us. Glyn seemed so calm that morning. “Pino and I are close, you know? He told me how he felt about guys when he was twelve. There were other hints.” He glanced at me but it was my turn to stand in silence. “You remember that first game of capture the flag?” As if I would ever forget, “I saw the kid fall for you and my heart sank.” I must have sobbed because he smiled gently at me. The spring wind plucked at my clothes and ruffled Glyn’s long hair. “What did Pino know about guys? I worried at first, Justin and Nate; they talk sex like whores, and sorry I know Justin is your best friend,” which wasn’t true I realized or the two of us would not be facing off in the park. I was looking at my best friend. “But not you Simon, I’ve watched you and you’re not like that at all,” Glyn stopped. “Still, Pino really hurt, he swore it wasn’t you, and now suddenly he is high as a kite. That’s good Si, only Jessica and you seem to fit so well, are you just wading here?”
“I’m drowning Glyn.” Glyn nodded. “Or I don’t know, maybe I’ve been drowning and now I’m finally reaching the surface.” My sigh was ragged. I continued on with a tone of desperation, “It’s not something I can explain to you. I don’t expect you to understand.”
“Si,” Glyn said my name sharply and I paused, “I get how you and Pino could want each other this way. I can understand his feelings for you.” I absorbed that silently. “Thanks,” Glyn added.
“For what?” I asked.
“Telling me, this means a lot to me.” I squatted down and stared at a rusty spike as Glyn continued. “Pino trusts me, thank you for trusting me too.”
“We’re friends.” It was more than that, but how could I say that to him? I was drained and the prairie wind might push me over. Exhausting, I couldn’t imagine finding the energy to tell anyone else. I wanted to be a ghost for a while, completely anonymous except to Pino. I could hear the gravel shifting beneath Glyn’s feet as he moved closer. “I’m glad you moved here. I mean I’m glad I met you Glyn. I’m sorry I dumped all this on you. It isn’t fair I know.” I had pressed Glyn with my shattering news only to find no opposition. I needed the resistance to fuel my convictions.
“I’m glad you were here in St. George for us too Simon. We’ll figure things out,” Glyn touched my shoulder. His touch was reassuring even if I didn’t share his optimism. “Look, I brought Spiderman 3 along. What say you we take this back to your place? We could phone Pino.”
“Sure, but let’s not call Pino right now. This is complicated enough right now.” we were retreating to safer ground. I stood up and began leading the way to my house. “I’m sorry about this Glyn. It is not what I wanted.”
“Are you sure? Pino has no regrets.” I tried to read Glyn’s voice. Sometime later, I thanked him for being so easy on me that day. Glyn confessed he had not been as sure as he might have appeared. He kept saying the things his thirteen-year-old brother believed he would say and then too I mattered to him.
“I’m asking a lot.” I confessed glad to keep my eyes on the trail.
“What are you asking? To be the boy Pino wants? He’s not my kid sister Si. I seriously doubt he would do anything he didn’t want to. He never has before.” Mercifully, we did not pursue that in any depth.
An hour later, Glyn had distracted me enough to return to the topic. He explored the new apartment with interest. Peter was finishing the third floor plumbing while Emma sat in a lotus position on a toilet patiently. Peter paused long enough to kiss her in an easy manner and mention two cans of ylang ylang a pair of fifteen-year-olds might begin slapping on a wall. We retreated to my bedroom at the suggestion. I slumped on my unkempt bed as Glyn loaded his game. He dropped down close beside me, our shoulders together. After a bit of play he pushed a sock-covered foot onto mine and I pushed back reassuringly. I reflected that Brittany had schooled us both to the value of our friendship. Perhaps Glyn needed some guarantee that things had not changed. Glyn was excuse enough, but he also brought something of Pino into the room; I disciplined myself as best I could. We played the game by turns focusing on our game until Glyn cleared his throat. “Pino’s pretty cautious Si; letting people know,” he moved his foot off where it had been draped across mine.
“No worries Glyn,” I snagged his leg with my heel and drew it back. “He can trust me.” I offered the controller to Glyn.
“You need trust.” Glynn did not resume the game. He sat beside me toying with the pad. I let him be. I thought he was thinking about his brother and the grief he could get in hanging around with me. He pulled away suddenly and began pacing the room. I sat against the wall, legs crossed, waiting for him to unburden himself. I had injected far too much drama into his day.
“Has James told your mother and father?”
Glyn paused at a framed picture of Jessica my mother had inserted on a shelf. He studied it a moment before continuing without answering me. “Does it last? You feel for someone, but how long does it last?”
His plaintive words stung me a bit. He was still looking at Jessica’s picture and I guessed he was wondering how committed I could be to Pino if I shrugged off Brittany and so easily dismissed Jessica. It was a fair question. I was only fourteen that year and Pino thirteen. Our youth didn’t register with me though. I had my passion and that was all that mattered then. I tried to answer carefully. “I’ve only just been honest with Pino, only just been honest with myself. Jessica and I are good friends; I don’t think it could have been anything more than that. I hope we can still be good friends. Maybe she wants more; I don’t really know what to say to her. She deserves someone special. Before that there was Brittany,” I had to stop there because that came too close to Glyn and what had transpired in the fall between us.
“She’s got someone else I think.”
“Yeah, she probably has.” My heart bled for him.
“How could you stand it?” Glyn asked turning finally from Jessica’s picture. He fell backward on the bed and rested his head on my pillow.
“I guess I didn’t give a shit.” I tried to say it lightly but Glyn’s body was distracting me. “Justin and Nate are not the only whores in my life I guess.” It was a chance, but I thought Glyn was ready to admit Brittany was not the girl he hoped she would be. I flopped beside Glyn and pushed at him to get his attention. “The girl has no sense, best looking guy in the class too.”
“You think so?” He looked at me speculatively. I sighed and lay down next to him so he couldn’t see my face, “What?”
“It’s not going to be the same is it?” I felt self conscious.
“What do you mean?” I stared at the ceiling waiting him out. He rolled on his side and this served to only bring us closer together. “Are you perving on me?” I rolled my eyes. He had not asked if I worried he might think I was attracted to him. He accused me directly. “That’s not so bad Simon.” He poked me in the side, “That’s not so bad.”
“I just said you were good looking, that’s all.” I could feel Glyn’s hand moving against my side. An hour ago we might have wrestled without it meaning anything beyond our friendship. At any rate it would have been nothing more to Glyn and I could have kept my thoughts to myself. “I’m new at this; don’t make it harder than it is.”
“It’s hard? I’m flattered.” I might have been a little hard. Glyn’s teasing did not seem to make it easier for my body to ignore him. He put his hand on my chest making things that much more difficult. “Simon, lighten up. I’ve had a year of practice teasing Pino. He laughs it off now. He’s my kid brother Si, he’s seen it all and so have I. I know him pretty well. He told you how he got the nickname right?”
“Oh sure, the haircut,” I smiled at the image of Pino with a shroom.
“Haircut?” Glyn sounded puzzled, “We were playing one of our little games and he boned on me.” I stared at Glyn and he caught my surprise. “Okay, I guess he didn’t want to tell you that. He was eleven I think. Haven’t you seen your brothers naked, goofed around with them?”
“John and Paul ignored me most of the time. I shared this room with Peter. He was around sixteen when I got Jasmine’s room. He used to bath me when I was little.” Peter’s erections in the morning; they were fascinating. I had not thought about that in years. I glanced at Glyn and smiled. “This is just not fair.”
“Ease up a little Si, its hard not to notice other people. I admit it; I look at Jessica sometimes and think you’re lucky. She probably knows it. I hope I don’t make her uncomfortable. Peter’s girlfriend,” I supplied the name, “Emma, she’s good looking. You’re good looking too Simon Wallace. Ask Jessica or half a dozen other girls you know, ask some guys, they’ll agree with me.” Glyn bolted upright and sat on the edge of the bed. “Maybe things have changed between us a little; it’s only that I understand what you like now.” He twisted so he could see my face. “Am I wrong?” I admitted he was not and earned an unexpected smile. “That’s not so much.”
It’s hard to pick a place to start. When is the moment you understand yourself? Was it that night with Kevin Stonechild? By the tracks that magic summer day playing Flag Tag I found Pino, and I found Glyn. Understanding followed. I watched the curve of his back and realized how fortunate I was. Glyn cared about Pino and he cared about me too. I was not sure if Pino’s brother understood our relationship as I did. It seemed he thought the two of us orbited Pino in some manner. I saw us in a three-way dance moving about each other. I sat beside him feeling better and less alone.
Feedback is the only payment our authors get!
Please take a moment to email the author if you enjoyed the story.