I must have fallen asleep because I was woken up by a soft knocking on my bedroom door. I opened my eyes to a room bathed in a very light glow from the light in the hallways under my door. I sat up wincing at the sharp pain in my shoulder and called out for whoever it was to come in. The clock read 8:23 which I assumed was still night and stretched out a bit to try and untwist my muscles. The person entered the room and it was Sam.
She came rushing in and gave me big hug, gingerly making sure that she was not squashing my shoulder. She sat down with me and handed a small envelope with my name on it without saying a word. I gave her a strange look as I tore it open and unfolded the letter inside. I had recognized the handwriting on the envelope and knew hat it was from Tim. My heart raced as I smoothed out the paper and started to read the short letter.
Dear Cute stuff,
I know that you are going through a lot at the moment and you have been through so much in the last few months. I just wanted to let you know that I adore you with al my heart and will stand by you, support you and cherish you forever.
Whatever you decide to do about school I will stand by you and support you in. My love for you is totally unconditional and if it means that you need to follow through with the legal case I will be there beside you.
Ever since I have met you my life has changed forever. I no longer feel alone or afraid of the future because I know that you will be there with me helping and loving me. Seeing you in so much pain and hurt at school today made me feel so helpless and small. I know that many of the people that make your life so tough are people that in the past I have called my friends.
Well that is no longer the case. I can't love you and be friends with people that hurt and torment you. I am not yet ready to come out and announce to the world I am gay, but as I see the hurt you go through on a daily basis I can't idly stand by and accept this. I don't know what I should be doing to support you more. I wish that we could run away together and get away from all of this. Where we could be ourselves without fear or hiding.
I remember that weekend we spent up north so well, waking up with you in my arms sharing our hopes and dreams together. This means so very much to and I know how much it means to you.
Baby, I will always love you and care for you no matter what the future may hold.
I have spoken to Sam and she has suggested that this weekend we still go out into the city after the musical if you feel up to it. She has agreed to cover for us both and say that we are staying at her place if we want to go. I am nervous about going out to a gay club, but I feel we need to meet more people like us and find a plae where we fully belong.
Baby, don't worry about school, it's almost over and we will never have to deal with those thugs and dickheads ever again.
I love you and will always love you
I put down the letter as tears splashed down my cheeks, I loved him so much and it was so wonderful that he loved me too. I turned to Sam and hugged her and she let me cry on her shoulder until I was all cried out. Once I had stopped crying we talked and talked. We talked about what I should do and how I should deal with the school issues and also how Tim and I could find a way to be together all of the time.
I thanked her profusely for the offer to cover for us when we wanted to go out. I half suspected that my parents thought Sam and I were seeing each other, and we laughed at what they must be thinking is going on right now in my bedroom.
I was at a loss as to what I should do. If I did press charges then the school would probably expel me. In some ways this was not a real problem because I could still sit for my final exams, just not at the school. But then on the other hand the stress of following through with a court case and being expelled was almost too much to cope with on top of everything else.
I decided that in the end it was best that I not do anything for a couple of days until I had spoken to Jo a bit more about what would happen if I did press charges. I also wanted to finish my last week and a half of formal school lessons before we went on study break. There was just so much to think about.
In thinking of all of this tried to rationalize what had happened and why Mr McAllister had gone so over the top in hurting me. I was usually a very well behaved student but lately something inside has seemed to crack under all the bullying and torment form people and I had just had enough. Every time someone harassed me or hit me, I would lose my cool so quickly and want to really lash out at them. This new feeling surprised and scared me at the same time.
Sam suggested that I was finally learning to stand up for myself and I gave her a wry smile and agreed that maybe I was indeed starting to "grow some balls"!
Sam left about 11 pm and I undressed and went to bed. I lay in bed for what seemed like hours thoughts spinning around my head, fear, loneliness because I wasn't in bed with Tim, excitement, feelings of retribution and horror of horrors plans to beat the living daylights out of the teacher.
I was so grateful to Cass and JO for helping me and finally on that thought I fell asleep. My alarm woke me in the morning and at first I wondered whether the entire day before had been a dream. I moved my left arm and a dull ache reminded me that it had been no dream and I had to face the world and the school.
There was no way that I was going to see the headmaster in the morning, I had had enough of his lies. Instead I was going to go straight to class and try and forget for a few hours that nay of it had ever happened. My father was up and I could hear him noisily argue with my mother about me. I closed my eyes and covered my head with my pillow to drown out the conversation, but in the end decided to get up and have a shower.
After my shower I got dressed in my school uniform which was not easy because of my shoulder and put my am back in it's sling to let it heal. I was intending to wait until my father had gone to work before going downstairs, but the doorbell rang and I was curious and bit scared as to who it could be at this time of the morning. I opened my door a crack and listened to my mother opening the door. I was worried that it was someone from school come t stop me from going or something. But my mother called upstairs, "Josh, Tim's here he's going t drive you to school".
I was so excited that I almost tripped trying to get downstairs to see him. I ran down the stairs and my gorgeous boyfriend was standing there in the doorway with a concerned look on his face. His dark hair was combed perfectly and his beautiful brown eyes stared at me communicating his love for me. I took a silent breath in because he always looked so stunning in his school uniform. His body filed out the shirt perfectly and I could see the small impressions of his nipples peeking through the thin material.
I grinned at him and he gave me perfect smile, his white teeth shone in the light and his smooth boyish face lit up. I grabbed my bag in my good arm and raced for the door.
"What about breakfast" my mother called out after me?
"I'll get something on the way I yelled back over my shoulder as we raced for his car. He had his father's MX5 again and the top was down. He grabbed my bag, opened the boot and threw it in. We had nearly an hour before classes started and I was really desperate to spend some time with him talking and if possible hugging and kissing him.
We jumped in the car and drove off, but instead of turning left at the end of the street towards school he turned right and sped off towards the national park He put his hand on my leg and told me that we were going to coffee shop in the park on the way where we could talk. I gently squeezed his leg and he looked at me with such intensity and love that I almost melted into the leather seats.
After arriving at the coffee shop and giving our orders to the girl we went outside and sat in the warm morning sun on the deck looking over the river. We sat there holding hands just watching the birds swoop down into the river looking for there breakfast without saying a word, enjoying the serenity and the feeling of being together.
The girl bought our orders out and gave an extra special smile when she saw our hands together and said hi to Tim. It turned out that she was the sister of one of Tim's school friends and she had guessed a long time ago about Tim. Tim smiled and blushed slightly as they quickly spoke and traded some gossip about her university course and current boyfriend. Then Tim's face turned serious and he asked her not to tell her brother about him. She laughed and said she would never do that and then walked back inside.
I started off by telling Tim how much I loved him and how special I thought he was for sending me the letter. It was exactly what I needed last night and it was perfect. We talked and talked until we both agreed that the best thing to do for the time being was nothing. I would hold off pressing charges for a few weeks and then see how I felt, but I had to tell the school that McAllister had to go or I would be taking legal action against the school as well as pressing charges against him.
We ended up sitting there leaning against each other with Tim's arms around me. I felt so very safe and loved at that moment and knew that whatever would happen at school and in the future I would be fine because Tim was with me.
We had to hurry to school after that because we were running late by that stage. We did get to class just as the final bell rang signaling the beginning of class. I was terrified as I walked into the room, but the biggest consolation was that my first and second periods were with Cass and I knew she would look out for me. Cass gave me a brilliant smile as I walked in and came over to ask how I was. I told her I was ok just a bit sore, but feeling a lot better about the whole thing.
I had expected that the other boys at school would be giving me hell, but it was really strange. Some of them wouldn't even look my way or acknowledge that I existed, whilst some of the others looked at me as if they were scared of me. Ben who usually was very well behaved in class whispered in my ear that he hoped I was ok and he was behind me 100%. That quite surprised me as I knew he was quite bad at dealing with his own insecurities about his sexuality being found out, and aligning himself with me was a dangerous move for him to make.
Surprisingly the first lesson went off without anyone making any sort of derogatory comments at me and I guessed that Cass had said something to everyone before I had arrived. My suspicions were confirmed at the end of the lesson when Cass came over to me and told me that she had threatened anyone who said or did anything to me with a Saturday detention. Well so far so good I thought!
She also told me that most of the teachers had heard about it and most of them were absolutely horrified at the way I had been treated and had told the headmaster as much. I was overwhelmed that most of the teaching faculty was behind me, I would have thought that they would have closed ranks and sided with one of their own. But I was totally mistaken by that. She did tell me that Mcallister had not been reprimanded and was there that day and for me to be very careful and not to go to his class if I had it.
I did have him straight after lunch but had already decided to go to the library for that our instead. She also told me that thee was going to be a special meeting of the school board, but that she expected that the board would not reprimand him either. I was livid with anger over that, but decided that the best way for me to deal with this was to do nothing.
The other periods that day were much the same, except most people as they passed me instead of saying nasty things, hitting me or tormenting me mainly kept out of my way. Tim, Nick, Dan and Ben found me at lunchtime as I was going to the Music master to tell him that I would not be able to play in the musical orchestra tomorrow night because of my shoulder.
They all came with me and waited as I chatted with him. He was a kind and popular teacher and he sat me down and we chatted for almost 15 minutes about the incident. He understood that I would not be able to play, but suggested that I should some anyway and site with the orchestra as I deserved to be there. I thanked him profusely and agreed that I would indeed still come.
I left his office and the entire group of us went to one of the benches overlooking the oval to talk. I was talk that the entire school was talking about what had happened, not just the assault, but also how I had stood up to McAllister and told him where to get off. I knew that he was an unpopular teacher at the best of times, but it seemed that I had really struck a raw nerve in the school student population with my outburst and most people agreed that I was damn plucky to have done so. In some ways I had become a bit of a school celebrity, but I knew that the worst was not over yet and if the school did not do anything about his behavior I would.
Tim discretely grabbed my hand and squeezed it as I spoke to the group getting their opinion of what I should do. They couldn't agree, with Nick and Ben thinking I should sue the school and have him charged while Dan and Tim agreed with me that I should wait and see what happens. In the end I shrugged and said that I would wait and see before doing anything drastic.
AS the bell rang I saw the headmaster heading in my direction with the school vice principal. They were making a beeline towards us and I knew that they were there to find me. Tim stood up as they approached and stood between me and them. They had a short conversation before he let them pass and approach me.
They wanted me to come to a meeting between myself, Cass, the headmaster, Mcallister and he school counselor. I looked around at Tim and he shrugged his shoulders letting me make up my own mind. I decided that if Cass was there it would be fine so I agreed. I said goodbye to the boys and told Tim I would meet him after school before following the head and vice principal to an office.
Again they had lied to me and Cass was not there. Instead the two men who had been at my house the night before were there along with my father. My heart sunk at the site of them and I started to back out the door. I was stopped by the vice principal who was blocking the door and I became panicked at the site of Mcallister entering the room from another door.
I was made to sit down at the table, and did so sullenly not looking at anyone in the room. I was livid that my father was there and I had been lied to again by the headmaster about what was happening. Once everyone had sat down the headmaster introduced the two men at the table as the school solicitors who were there representing the school. I looked up and scowled at them as they stared contemptuously at me.
It turned out that my father had been in a meeting with this group since early this morning discussing their version of the incident and coming to an agreement. The agreement it seemed had already been agreed upon and I was there to sign it and shut up.
The headmaster outlined the agreement and told me that if I did not sign it I would be expelled immediately. The agreement outlined that the Mr Mcallister and I had had a disagreement after class. During the disagreement I had fallen over injuring my arm and shoulder. Mr Mcallister had then taken me to the headmaster's office where he organized for the school nurse to see me and give me medical attention. Cass had attended and seen Mr Mcallister helping me into the headmaster's office. I had called the police because I was disorientated from the pain.
I stared at them all in the room with absolute disbelief and couldn't believe that they had twisted the whole incident to try and look like they had no responsibility. A piece of paper was passed to me with a pen. I looked down and saw that everyone except myself and my father had already signed the statement. I looked up and around and steadfastly refused to sign or even pick up the pen. My father exploded at me and told me to just sign the form and get it over with right now. I pushed the statement away and my father grabbed at it and signed both my name and his name.
"you can't do that, I screamed at him. That is not what happened. I am not going to sign that. One of the solicitors then said well he is under 18 therefore his parent or guardian can sign on his behalf, it's not quite as legally binding but that's fine.
The solicitor then handed my father another form which he explained was a non disclosure agreement for him to sign barring any of the events surrounding the incident from being disclosed publicly.
I sat there in shock as everyone shook hands and said that it was the best thing for all involved. Mcallister sat there with a smug look on his face and looked at me contemptuously. I couldn't believe that my own father had sided with these people and let them get away with a full on assault on me. My head was again swimming as I sat there taking in everything that had just happened. At that moment I hated my father almost as much as I hated the school and Mcallister. The headmaster came and stood in front of me and told me that it was best that I forgot al about this and got on with my exams. He then turned and walked away leaving me and my father alone.
As soon as the room was empty I turned to my father and told him that as of that moment I no longer had a father and I wanted nothing to do with him. I was 18 in a week and finishing school in less than 6 weeks time. I would never respect him again because he had totally broken my trust in him.
My father didn't say a word, he just sat there looking at me. He sagged in his chair and suddenly looked twenty years older than he was. I meant what I said and had nothing more to say to him. I walked out of the room and left him there to think about what he had done.
My mind was doing somersaults and I felt like I was going to start crying at any moment. I had no idea what to do and the only thing I wanted to do was find Tim and hug him. I needed him to tell me that everything was going to be ok and I would be fine. I knew that I couldn't go and drag him out of class because hat would cause too many problems. Instead I decided to go to the only person that I knew would support me apart from Tim, Cass.