|The Lernier Family|
|© 2011 Russ Nielsen
All Rights Reserved
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|Chapter 29: Purev|
The next morning, Ashley asked, "Dad, are you coming to my awards ceremony?"
Rick looked surprised, "I think we said we were going last night. Has something changed since then?"
"Well, you always go to Kyle's games and he is playing again, tonight," Ashley said. "I wasn't sure you really meant it. I know how much you like watching Kyle play football, Dad."
Comprehension crossed Rick's face upon hearing Ashley's explanation. "Thank you for clarifying your question, Ashley. I'm sorry that I didn't make it clear that we are going to your awards ceremony first and then, if there is time, we will go to Kyle's game. Does that sound like a plan?"
Reassured, Ashley smiled and said, "Yes, Dad." She turned to her brother and asked, "Kyle, are you okay with us coming late to your game?"
Kyle nodded his head. "Dad already talked to me about it and it's okay if you miss my game tonight. The whole family has been to every one of my games. I think it's only fair that you have the family attend your special event. I wish I could be there, Ashley."
Ashley smiled at her brother and said, "We'll take lots of photos and a video so you can see me do the flag ceremony."
I said, "That sounds like a great idea, Ashley. Finish your breakfast. It's almost time for you to leave for school."
They finished eating and cleared their plates. They each hugged me and thanked me for breakfast. Lastly, Rick pulled me into his arms and kissed me. He pulled back from his passionate kiss and looked me in the eyes, "Please be kind to Todd today."
I smiled, "I will be extra kind to him, Rick. I bruised his ego pretty badly yesterday."
Rick laughed, "Yes, you did. I love you."
"I love you, too," I said. I followed them into the foyer and closed the door behind them as they left the house.
Scott and Alonzo had just finished opening the health clinic doors when a man stumbled through the doors. He was bleeding from several wounds on his face and head and he looked like he was bleeding from a wound in his side. Alonzo ran to catch him before he fell on the floor. He called out to the receptionist, "Call Dr. Munteanu!"
Scott came out of his office and rushed over to help Alonzo carry the man into one of the examination rooms. Scott moved out of the way as the other two nurses joined Alonzo to assist in assessing the man's injuries. The doctor joined them as Scott left the room.
Scott returned to his office, glad that there were medical professionals present to help the guy. The man looked like he was in pretty bad shape. While Alonzo's strengths were in the medical field, Scott's strengths were in marketing, finance and law! They were very excited at the prospects of working for themselves when Rick and Glenn gave them their wedding gift and suggested that he and Alonzo start their own businesses. Shortly after they were married, they began the preparations to start their business ventures. Rick and Glenn had provided the capital they needed to purchase the building in Fairfax County and fund the renovations it needed. Scott and Alonzo had overseen the renovations to suit their needs. Most of the building went to the urgent care center and health clinic; with the remainder being set aside for Scott's law offices.
Their attorneys had set up all of the legal and business structures so they could run the business. Rick and Glenn had offered to pay the legal fees for a separate set of lawyers to represent Scott and Alonzo just in case they felt there was a need for it. Scott had talked it over with Alonzo and they had declined the offer. However, they did ask for help finding lawyers who knew all of the regulations, etc., surrounding the medical industry.
It was a good thing, too; because Scott had never dreamed that running a health clinic which included an urgent care facility would be subject to so many regulations, rules, policies, and bureaucratic red tape. Scott wasn't sure they didn't make a mistake trying to start a business in the medical field.
Since they had opened their doors and begun taking patients, Scott marveled at how Alonzo could be so calm when emergency patients came in with such horrendous injuries; some of which should have really been sent to the emergency room at the hospital. He admired Alonzo's quiet confidence. Nothing seemed to shake him or surprise him. Alonzo's personality was almost the exact opposite of his own. Scott had a volatile personality and he knew it. Alonzo knew exactly what to say to calm him down and to help keep him on an even keel. He truly loved Alonzo because he was a better person when he was with his awesome husband.
He finished his administrative work for the health clinic and then went in search of Alonzo. He walked into the waiting room and found Alonzo sitting next to a little girl who had a broken arm. Her mother was sitting next to her as Alonzo asked her some questions. Scott sat down and waited while Alonzo took the two of them back to an examination room to wait for the doctor to see them. Alonzo returned and asked with a smile, "Are you ready to go to your real job?"
Scott stood up and wrapped his arms around Alonzo's waist, "My real job is taking care of you, Babe."
Alonzo laughed, "You are doing a great job of keeping me happy. I meant your other job."
"Oh that. Yes, I'm going to my other office, but I won't be too far away." He kissed Alonzo and released him.
Alonzo said, "I will see you for lunch."
Scott grinned, "I'll be waiting!" Alonzo watched as his hot shot lawyer husband walked towards the door. He loved watching Scott's gorgeous bubble butt. He was getting really turned on watching his lover. Scott turned his head to see Alonzo watching him and blew him a kiss.
Scott walked next door to his law offices. As he entered the office, his paralegal looked up from his desk. "Good morning, Christopher," Scott said in greeting. "What do we have on our schedule for today?"
Christopher was a first year law student at George Mason University. He was a 22-year old Nordic God. His flaxen blond hair brushed his shoulders and his brilliant blue eyes sparkled with intelligence and humor. His aristocratic nose, generous smile, and strong square chin always gave Scott a thrill of excitement. Christopher worked out regularly and it showed. He matched Scott in height and weight. They had hit it off from the moment they met. Of course, Scott hired him immediately! Not only did he have the good looks, but he was highly intelligent!
Christopher smiled and replied to his boss' inquiry, "You are due in court in about an hour. You are free for lunch but you have two appointments this afternoon." He handed Scott a printout of his schedule.
Scott said, "Thank you. You're so efficient."
"I have to be," Christopher said. "I will be heading to class when you leave for the courthouse but I will be back in time for your first appointment. The case files are on your desk for you to review."
Scott smiled and said, "Thank you, Christopher. Don't let me forget to leave on time. Do you have a friend that needs a job? We could use someone to fill in for you when you need to be at school."
Christopher said, "I don't know of anyone right now; but I'll ask around. I won't let you forget to leave on time; I promise."
Scott walked into his office and closed the door. He sat down at his desk and leaned back in his chair. He thought about Christopher for a few moments, wondering if he was gay or not. He had never mentioned a girlfriend to Scott but that didn't necessarily mean he was gay. He knew that Christopher had a roommate but that is about all he knew of Christopher's personal life. He and Christopher talked about everything under the sun but never about their personal lives. Christopher had made it clear from the beginning that he didn't want to discuss his family or his personal situation with Scott. Rather than continue to speculate about Christopher's sexuality, he turned to the case files on his desk.
An hour later, Christopher tapped on his door and then walked into Scott's office. He walked over to Scott's desk, "Scott, it's time to go."
"Thanks, Christopher," Scott replied. He stood and stretched his arms over his head as he grabbed his suit jacket from the hanger in the little closet near the door.
Christopher said, "I called my roommate about working for you and he said he was interested."
Scott smiled, "If he looks as good as you do, I'm sure he'll do fine!"
Christopher laughed, "Yes, Diego is very good looking."
"Good, have him come in for an interview this afternoon," Scott replied.
Christopher said, "I'll let him know. Oh, I do need to disclose to you that he's my boyfriend."
Scott grinned broadly, "I'm sure that Diego will do just fine, unless there is some reason you think he shouldn't work with us. Is he going to graduate school?"
As they locked up the office, Christopher replied, "I think he will fit in very well with us. He is from Costa Rica. I met him last summer when I was on vacation there. He has a green card but wants to become a citizen. Diego would like to attend college but he doesn't have the funds to do so."
"Does he speak English?" Scott asked.
"Yes, he speaks French, English and Spanish," Christopher said.
"I look forward to meeting Diego," Scott said. Scott got into his silver BMW Z4 convertible and drove over to the Fairfax County Courthouse.
Christopher pulled out his cell phone and called Diego. "Diego, you have an interview with Scott this afternoon."
Diego said, "Thanks for helping me find a job, Scott. I hate living off of you. I want to pull my own weight."
"You already do that, Diego. You make me very happy. I'll stop by and pick you up in a couple of hours or so," Christopher said.
He walked over to his black Volkswagen Jetta and climbed inside. He sat and thought about what he had just revealed to Scott. He hadn't intended to out himself quite yet to Scott. He knew Scott was married to Alonzo from what Scott had revealed to him about their relationship. He didn't like being so open about being gay even with someone who was gay. He worried about his career and didn't want prejudice against gays to prevent him from establishing himself in the legal community. He had heard the anti-gay slurs of his fellow law students. It really disturbed him to hear them coming from people who could one day become a judge or prosecuting attorney. He had always felt that anyone going into a profession that dealt with the law needed to be impartial and open minded.
He had confronted a couple of his friends, Darren and Tom, about their hatred of gays. He had asked them how they could claim to aspire to be part of the legal system with such a vile hatred of their fellow human beings. Both of them said they would try to persuade lawmakers to pass laws to make it a criminal act to engage in such behavior. One had gone so far as to advocate the death penalty for homosexuality. He had grown angry and told them they were some of the worst people he had ever met and hoped they failed to pass the bar exam because they didn't deserve to have that kind of power over someone else's life.
He had stormed out of the library that day. He had cut off all communication with them. Christopher had gone to their professor and asked to work with a different group. He explained the situation and the professor had agreed to make the change.
He looked at the clock on the dashboard and realized he needed to get moving or he'd be late for his class. He turned the key in the ignition and backed out of his parking spot. He drove to the law school campus and parked his car in a nearby parking garage. He jogged to class and managed to slip into his seat just before the professor entered the room.
After class, he was headed to his next class when Darren and Tom approached him. He braced himself for a confrontation with them. Darren said, "We wanted to invite you to rejoin our group."
"Why would I want to do that? I've been studying with a new group for a couple of weeks now; one that doesn't hold extremely prejudicial views towards other people." Christopher asked with an edge to his voice.
Tom looked at Darren before he turned back to Christopher and said, "We want to apologize to you for our remarks. You were correct to rebuke us for expressing our prejudices in the manner we did."
"Your apologies mean nothing to me because I don't believe that your opinions have changed. The answer is no," Christopher responded. "If you'll please excuse me?"
He didn't wait for their answer but brushed by them on the way to his next class. He was having difficulty controlling his anger at the sheer audacity of their request to have him rejoin them. Did they think he couldn't see they weren't really sorry or even contrite? He was still steaming when he drove to his apartment to pick up Diego.
He rode the elevator to the 6th floor of their apartment building in the Crystal City area of Arlington County. They had chosen the apartment because it was close to Washington, DC.
He remembered how excited Diego had been the day they looked at the apartment.
Diego walked out on the balcony and immediately exclaimed, "Christopher, come look!"
Christopher joined him on the balcony and Diego excitedly pointed to the DC skyline, "See? There is the Capitol Building and the Washington Monument!"
Christopher laughed at his lover's exuberance. "Is this the apartment you want to live in?"
"Yes, Christopher! Oh, yes!" Diego said, his eyes shining with his happiness. Diego had only dreamed of coming to the United States. To actually be here, renting an apartment with his boyfriend, was the realization of two of his most heartfelt dreams: 1) to have a boyfriend and 2) to move to the United States.
Christopher took Diego by the hand and led him back inside the empty apartment. He said, "Let's look over the rest of the apartment."
The two bedroom apartment had parquet floors which caused their footsteps to echo hollowly. One room was much larger than the other and had double closets.
Diego enthusiastically started to outline where their furniture would go. "Our king-sized bed can go here and our dressers over there. We can set up your office in the smaller bedroom."
Christopher laughed, "Okay, I can see that you want to move into this apartment. Are you sure you're happy with the kitchen?"
Diego frowned slightly. He hadn't even noticed the kitchen in his haste to take in the view from the balcony. He said, "Let me check it out." He left the bedroom and walked out into the front room and into the galley kitchen. He stood with his legs spread apart and his hands on his hips.
Seeing Diego's deeply furrowed brow, Christopher asked, "What's the matter?"
"The kitchen is way too small. I can practically touch the walls with my arms outstretched," he said. He stretched out his arms to prove his point.
"What do you want to do?" Christopher asked.
Diego turned to look out through the sliding glass doors and then back at the kitchen. Christopher could see the uncertainty on his face. He waited in silence as his boyfriend thought things through.
Finally, Diego gave a huge sigh and said, "It's okay. I can deal with the small kitchen because I will have the best view in town."
Christopher embraced Diego and kissed him on the lips. "Let's go down and fill out the paperwork."
As he unlocked the door, he heard Diego call out, "I'm in the bathroom, honey!"
He closed the door and walked into the front room and sat down on the couch. Again, his thoughts wandered; this time back to when they first met and Diego's move to the United States.
They had been together for three months in Costa Rica where they first met. When Christopher returned to the United States, he convinced his parents to sponsor Diego so he could immigrate to the United States. They had gladly done so, and Diego had come to live with them. What his parents didn't know was that he and Diego were more than just friends! They were very religious people, and Christopher was afraid to tell them he was gay and had a boyfriend.
Christopher helped Diego apply for a green card. Diego had only recently received it. That is when they decided to move into their own apartment. Christopher had found the job with Scott's law office and now he was about to get Diego a job at the same law office.
Diego came out of the bathroom and walked into the front room. He asked, "How do I look?" He had dressed up in a form fitting cream-colored velour sweater that hugged his upper body, emphasizing his slim waist and narrow hips. He wore a nice pair of microfiber black pants that fit him perfectly. His jet black hair was neatly combed with an Elvis style wave in the front (Elvis being one of his favorite singers!). His dark eyes sparkled with his excitement. His honey colored skin was freshly scrubbed and he looked great!
Christopher grinned and said, "You look good enough to eat!"
Diego returned the grin, "Good, then I am ready to go."
Christopher gave Diego a quick kiss and then led him out of the apartment. They walked hand in hand to the elevator. When it arrived they walked in and Diego pushed the button for the lobby. As soon as the elevator door closed, Christopher swept Diego into his arms and gave him a passionate kiss. This was their tradition from their first day in the building. Every time they boarded the elevator, Christopher gave Diego a passionate kiss. Sometimes, he cornered Diego and held his arms above his head as he kissed him. Other times, he leaned him over and kissed Diego as he rested on Christopher's knee looking up at Christopher. On special occasions, Christopher marked his boyfriend's neck instead of kissing him on the lips. It was on one such occasion that the building manager stopped the elevator and caught them kissing.
Mrs. Mahorney had laughed and said, "Excuse me, boys. Don't let me interrupt you!"
They had laughed and exited the elevator. They took the stairs the rest of the way down instead of riding in the elevator with Mrs. Mahorney.
Today, they made it to the lobby without mishap and exited the elevator. Once they were inside the car, Christopher leaned over and kissed Diego before putting the keys in the ignition.
Diego said, "I hope I get this job, Christopher. I'm so very nervous."
Christopher said, "You don't have to worry. I think you will do fine."
Diego looked at his lover and wished he felt as confident as Christopher did about his prospects. They rode in silence for a few miles when Christopher said, "I outed us to Scott today."
Diego's eyebrows shot up in surprise, "Why did you do that? You have always told me to be very careful who I talk to about us, especially anyone who knows your family."
Christopher blushed in embarrassment. "You're right about keeping things under wraps about us; but I felt I had to be upfront about our relationship since Scott is thinking of hiring you."
"How did he react when you told him?" Diego asked.
Christopher replied, "He just smiled and said you would be just fine." He reached over and put his hand on Diego's knee. "It's going to be okay." A few minutes later, he pulled into his usual parking space and turned off the engine. He looked over at Diego and smiled. "Relax!" Christopher commanded.
"I can't," Diego replied, his voice cracking as he tried to master his nervousness.
Christopher got out of the car and walked around to open Diego's door. He reached in and took Diego's hand to help him out of the car. Diego's arms went around his waist and he clung to his boyfriend. It surprised Christopher to see Diego this way. He had never thought Diego to be shy or retiring. He hugged Diego tight to his chest and kissed the top of his head.
"Let's go inside," Christopher said. He hugged Diego and kissed him.
Reluctantly, Diego relinquished his hold on Christopher. Instead, he grabbed Christopher's hand and held on tight. Christopher smiled reassuringly and led the way inside the law office.
There wasn't anyone in the waiting area when they entered but they could hear voices in the inner office. The door opened and Scott came out. Upon seeing them he said, "Hey Christopher! Have you guys eaten yet?"
Christopher replied, "No, we haven't. Let me introduce my boyfriend, Diego Santander Uribe."
Scott smiled and extended his hand to Diego, "Nice to meet you Diego. Come into my office. I want you to meet my husband."
Diego looked at Christopher and mouthed the word "husband?" Christopher shrugged his shoulders and followed Scott into his office.
They entered to see a man dressed in a white uniform. He was looking out of the window, but turned around when he heard them come in. Christopher noted the well-muscled arms that made it obvious that this guy lifted a lot of weights. Scott, spying them, said, "Alonzo, this is Christopher and his boyfriend, Diego. Christopher and Diego, this is my husband, Alonzo."
They shook hands and Alonzo said, "It's nice to meet you guys. I've been after Scott to hire more people to help in the office and I'm glad he has finally listened to me."
Scott smiled and said, "Yes, I finally listened to your advice." He walked over and kissed Alonzo on the lips.
Diego glanced at Christopher who grinned. "I'm not used to such open displays of affection between men," Diego said. "Christopher and I have been extremely careful not to show our affection for each other because his parents would disown him if they ever found out he is gay."
Alonzo said, "I understand that feeling; but I finally gave up trying to make my parents happy and put myself first. That's when I married Scott. I haven't heard anything from my family in over a year. It makes me sad but I wouldn't trade my marriage to Scott for anything in the world."
Diego nodded his head, "I hope that we can be married someday."
Christopher said, "I'm not ready to be openly gay. I'm afraid of the negative impact it would have on my future as a lawyer."
Scott smiled, "I used to think the same thing as you. However, I have found that most people don't care what my sexual orientation is when they are looking for a lawyer."
Christopher replied, "But you are already established in your business."
"Not really. I opened my law practice only six months ago," Scott countered.
"I didn't know that," Christopher said. "I've only worked for you for four months."
Scott thought for a moment, "What would you say about setting up our own law firm?"
"Do you mean setting up a partnership in this office?" Christopher asked.
"Yes, that's what I mean," Scott responded.
"But I'm only in my first year," Christopher pointed out.
"That doesn't matter. When you graduate and pass the bar, you can become a partner and we can practice law together out of this office. We could turn the break room into your office," Scott said.
Diego smiled, "I think it's a great idea. Christopher said you were looking for someone to work for you. Is that still true?"
Scott said, "Yes, it is. Do you want to work for me?"
"Yes, I do," Diego replied.
"Okay, you're hired. You can start right after we eat lunch," Scott said. "We have a couple of Subway sandwiches in the break room. Let's go eat."
The four of them walked into to the break room and sat at the table. Scott grabbed a couple of water bottles from the case of water on the floor and handed them around to each of the guys.
Alonzo said, "I got two, foot long Subway Club sandwiches. I hope that's okay with you guys."
Christopher said, "We aren't picky."
They split the sandwiches between them and started eating. Diego said, "Thank you for the lunch and for hiring me."
Scott said, "You're welcome." They chatted about Diego's new duties and Scott's expectations. "Christopher can show you where everything is."
They finished their lunch and Alonzo said, "I have to get back to work next door." Seeing Diego's questioning look, Alonzo elaborated, "I'm a nurse and I work at the health clinic next door."
Diego smiled, "That explains the uniform."
Alonzo nodded his head, "Yes, it does." He leaned over and kissed Scott. "I'll see you after work."
They heard the door close as Alonzo left the law office. Scott said, "I'd better get ready for my next appointment." He got up and went into his office.
Christopher said, "See, it wasn't as bad as you thought it would be."
"You are right, it wasn't anything like I imagined it would be," Diego replied, smiling at his boyfriend.
Christopher spent the afternoon helping Diego become familiar with the office. By the end of the day, Diego felt pretty confident that he would be able to do everything that was required of him.
Scott came out of his office, closing the door behind him. "Guys, it's time to call it a day." He walked over to the two guys. "I'd like to invite you to our place tomorrow for dinner. Here is our address." He handed them his card.
"Can we bring anything?" Christopher asked.
"No. Just bring yourselves," Scott answered. "We like entertaining guests. Come with your appetite and be ready to have fun."
Christopher smiled and said, "Thanks for the invitation, Scott. We will be there tomorrow night."
Jamie looked over at Eddie to see if he was ready to leave for home. They had been studying at the library for nearly four hours and he was more than ready to throw in the towel. His cell phone started to vibrate and he quickly retrieved it from his pocket. There was a text message from Kyle. He read it and then responded.
Eddie saw that Jamie had his phone out and asked, "Who was that?"
"Kyle. He wants to know if we are planning to go to his football game tonight. Rick and Glenn are going to Ashley's Girl Scout awards ceremony and will be arriving late to the game," Jamie responded.
Eddie smiled, "I'm ready to call it good for today. Going to Kyle's football game sounds like a good way to unwind."
Jamie nodded his head, "I think we should invite Scott and Alonzo to go with us. You know how much Scott loves sports."
Eddie replied, "Go ahead and text them."
Jamie quickly sent the text message and hit the send button. About 30 seconds later, a response popped up on his cell phone. He grinned, "Scott says they will be glad to meet us in Kingstowne for dinner and then we can go to the game from there."
Eddie nodded his head, "That sounds like a plan." They gathered up their books and left the library. Eddie was glad they didn't live very far from the George Mason University campus. He was mentally exhausted. They drove the short distance to their apartment complex and parked their car. Once inside their apartment, they dropped their backpacks at the door.
Eddie turned to Jamie and said, "It's time for some entertainment and relaxation." He grabbed Jamie's hand and led him into their en suite. They helped each other disrobe and they jumped into the shower together.
As Eddie washed Jamie's back he nibbled on his ears. "We'll have to tell Rick and Glenn that we really liked their suggestions for making our shower together the best part of our day." Jamie murmured his approval as he leaned back against Eddie's bare chest, his eyes closed.
Alonzo had changed into his street clothes and was sitting in the waiting room of Scott's law office. He leafed through a couple of the magazines Scott kept for clients to read while they waited. He looked up and saw Scott standing in the doorway to his office. He closed the door and came into the waiting room.
"I'll be about another 15 minutes. Is that okay?" Scott asked. "I hate to keep you waiting sweetheart."
Alonzo smiled up at his husband and said, "I'll be here when you finish."
Scott leaned down and kissed Alonzo lightly on the lips, "I love you."
"I love you, too," responded Alonzo. He was looking forward to a night out with his husband. He was very happy when Scott had sent him a text with their plans for the evening. Dinner with their friends, Eddie and Jamie, followed by a football game was a perfect ending to a perfect day. The day had been very busy for him starting with the severely wounded man who stumbled in the door. Fortunately, the man was recovering nicely. They had stabilized him and then called an ambulance to transport him to the hospital. He had called over to the hospital to follow up and he had been told the man was still in critical condition but was expected to recover. He liked his job because he got to help people. He didn't like seeing people get hurt. That part really bothered him; however, he did like seeing people recover and return to their normal lives.
Scott's door opened and an older gentleman walked towards Alonzo. He had pure white hair and a face so wrinkled with age it looked like his face was covered with a spider web. He was stooped over and leaned on a cane for support. He shuffled across the floor. Alonzo's attention was caught by the very bright blue eyes that peered out from underneath the man's bushy white eyebrows.
Alonzo stood up as the old man approached him. He was rather surprised when the gentleman addressed him, "You must be Scott's husband. I'm Mr. Eccles."
Alonzo took the outstretched hand in his. The skin of the hand looked paper thin and very fragile. Despite the look of frailty, the man's grip was strong. "Nice to meet you, Mr. Eccles," Alonzo replied.
"I am glad to see young guys like you married to each other. My partner and I were together for 46 years before he passed away. When I saw Scott's advertisement specializing in gay legal matters, I called immediately for an appointment," he said. "I want to find someone to run a home for gay teens that have been thrown out of their homes and abandoned by their families."
"Do you have a particular location in mind?" Alonzo asked.
"No, I don't. I know there is a place in Washington, DC. I'm not aware of any shelters in the local area, however. I know of at least one gay teen in my neighborhood that has been recently disowned by his parents. Purev was evicted from his home last week, and is living with me at the moment. He is a 15-year old Mongolian boy. As long as I'm around, Purev can live with me. However, my health isn't good and I'm worried about what would happen to him if I die before he turns 18," Mr. Eccles said. He continued with obvious pride in his voice, "I'm 82 years old and I still have my driver's license!"
Scott asked, "Do you think Purev would be interested in going to a high school football game?"
Mr. Eccles said, "I'm sure he would love to get out of the house. He doesn't have any friends at school. They abandoned him when he came out as being gay. He is having a very difficult time right now. I have set up some therapy sessions for him, and I have met with the school. I have approached his parents about terminating their parental rights but I haven't done anything about it, yet," he said.
"If he is okay with it, we will pick him in about an hour. We are going out to dinner and then to the game. Our friends' son plays for the Edison High School football team," Scott said.
Mr. Eccles said, "I'm sure he'll want to go." The old man pulled a cell phone from his pocket with some difficulty. He handed the phone to me, "Please call him. The buttons on this phone are too small. I have a hard time dialing telephone numbers. You'll find his name in the list of contacts."
Alonzo found Purev's name and pushed the call button. He handed it back to Mr. Eccles.
It rang two times before Purev answered. "Hello, Mr. Eccles."
"Hello, Purev. I have made two new gay friends today. They are going to a football game at Edison High School tonight. Would you be interested in going?"
There was a silence on the phone. Mr. Eccles started to speak but was interrupted, "Yeah, I'll go."
"They will pick you up in an hour," Mr. Eccles said.
"Okay, I'll be ready," Purev responded and ended the call.
Mr. Eccles smiled and said, "Thank you for offering to entertain my young friend. I have to admit I'm at a loss as to what to do for him. He sits in his room all day and plays on his computer or plays games on his phone. I've never seen anything like it."
Alonzo laughed, "It sounds like he is a normal teenager!"
Mr. Eccles sighed, "It is so different with teenagers these days."
Scott said, "We'll follow you home if that is okay with you?"
Mr. Eccles nodded his head, "Let's go then."
He shuffled towards the door. Scott asked, "Mr. Eccles, did you have a coat?"
Mr. Eccles replied, "Yes, I did. Thank you for reminding me. It's over there on that chair." He pointed gnarled finger at the chair next to me. Alonzo picked up the coat and helped him put it on. "Thank you, young man."
He shuffled out the door while Scott and Alonzo quickly turned out the lights and locked up for the night.
They followed Mr. Eccles' 1990 vintage Cadillac out of the parking lot and down the street. He avoided busy streets whenever possible taking them through many back streets and into neighborhoods Scott and Alonzo never knew existed. Finally, they arrived at Mr. Eccles' home. They pulled into the driveway and got out of their car.
Scott walked over to Mr. Eccles' car and opened the door for Mr. Eccles. With some assistance from Scott, Mr. Eccles managed to get out of his car. He got out his cane and shuffled his way up the sidewalk to the front door. He pushed the door open and then turned to them and said, "Please come in."
Scott and Alonzo followed him inside and then took a seat in the front room. Mr. Eccles shouted up the stairs, "Purev, we're home."
A few minutes later, a teenager with smooth olive skin, jet black hair worn at the shoulder, almond shaped black eyes, a generous mouth and smallish nose walked into the front room. He was thin and gangly. Purev was 5'7" (170 cm) tall. He wore tight black jeans with a black t-shirt.
Purev looked Scott and Alonzo over for a few moments before he said, "Hi! I'm Purev Javklan."
Mr. Eccles said, "This is Scott and his husband, Alonzo."
Purev's eyes widened at the import of Mr. Eccles words. "You guys are gay?"
"Yes, we are, and we're married to each other," Scott said smiling at Purev's reaction.
"You are seriously? Really married? Like married, married?" Purev asked, in disbelief.
"Yes, we are really married. We went to Canada to be married since Virginia doesn't allow gay marriages," Alonzo replied.
Scott stood up and said, "Let's go. We are meeting some friends in Kingstowne for dinner." He turned and pulled Alonzo to his feet.
Mr. Eccles said, "Do you need me to give you some money, Purev?"
Scott said, "We'll cover it for tonight, Mr. Eccles."
"Thank you for taking me with you tonight," Purev said. "I've had a couple of difficult weeks."
The three guys walked out to Scott's car and got in. As they drove to Kingstowne, Scott asked, "Purev, tell us what happened with your parents."
Purev said, "I turned 15 last week and I decided that I would tell my parents I'm gay."
"Why did you decide to tell them?" Alonzo asked.
"I wanted to start dating guys and I didn't want to continue to hide the fact that I like guys from my parents," Purev replied. "After dinner on my birthday, I opened my presents and then I told my parents that I'm gay. My father refused to believe me at first. After a lot of yelling and screaming, my father told me to get my stuff out of my room and never to come back."
"That's when you went to stay with Mr. Eccles," Scott said.
"Yes, I knocked on his door and told him that my parents had kicked me out of their house," Purev said.
Scott heard a strangled sound from Purev and glanced at him in the rearview mirror. "Are you okay, Purev?"
Alonzo turned and looked at Purev. Seeing the pain and anguish on his face, Alonzo said, "Scott pull over for a minute."
Scott pulled into an empty parking lot and brought the car to a stop. Alonzo got out of the car and climbed into the back seat next to Purev. He wrapped his arms around Purev. Purev buried his face in Alonzo chest and clung to him.
After regaining control of his emotions, Purev moved away from Alonzo and said, "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to cry like a baby."
Alonzo said, "Purev, stop right there. It's okay to grieve for the loss of you family."
Purev looked at Alonzo in surprise, "You don't think I'm a wimp for crying."
"No, I don't. I think it's a natural consequence of the deep sense of loss you feel, and the painful wounds your parents have inflicted because they have rejected you," Alonzo said.
"I can't believe my parents don't want to see me anymore. I feel so alone and so afraid," he said. Purev's eyes shone with unshed tears.
Alonzo said, "Our parents have disowned us as well. We sent them invitations to our wedding out of courtesy. They were returned unopened."
"Didn't that upset you?" Purev asked.
Alonzo replied, "Yes and no. Yes, it hurt me that my parents would disown me; and no because Scott loves me very much and I love him. Knowing that I am loved by Scott has helped diminish the pain and the sadness I feel."
Scott said, "It's the same for me. However, I haven't been as affected by my family's issue with me being gay because I have intentionally cut myself off from them since I left home right after high school."
"Is it normal for parents to disown their children?" Purev asked.
Scott said, "Depends on what you define as normal. Most parents love their children unconditionally and don't reject them because of their sexual orientation. It's only those parents who let their pride rule their actions that disown their children."
Purev nodded his head and said, "Yes, that describes my Dad. He brought me and my mother from Mongolia when I was a baby. My father's family is a very important one in Mongolia. He told me that I was a disgrace to my family and that I dishonored him by being gay."
Alonzo said, "My father said that and many other things. Fortunately, I was already living on my own when I came out to my parents."
"What do you think will happen to me now?" Purev asked.
"I think that you will be fine. You have a fine friend in Mr. Eccles and I think we can also help. Our friends will help, also," Alonzo said.
Purev looked uncertainly at Alonzo, "Why would you help me?"
"Because we have been helped by our friends and we, in turn, will help you," Alonzo said. "By the way, our friends are gay, too."
Purev smiled, "I didn't know there were so many gay men."
Scott laughed, "There are many more of us than you might imagine. Do you like Chinese food?"
Purev smiled, "Of course!"
Scott nodded his head, "I thought that would be the answer. We have found the best Chinese restaurant in Northern Virginia. It's called "The House of Dynasty." The food is great and we like the ambience of the place."
He drove them to the restaurant where they were to meet Eddie and Jamie. He pulled into the parking lot of the Hayfield Giant and drove to the end of the line of stores. He pulled into a parking space and turned off the engine.
As they were getting out of the car, Eddie and Jamie pulled into next to them. Eddie and Jamie joined them as they walked to the restaurant entrance. Eddie looked at Purev and said, "I'm Eddie and this is my husband, Jamie."
Purev smiled and replied, "I'm Purev. Nice to meet you."
Jamie said, "I'm glad you could join us for dinner, Purev."
They were quickly seated since Scott had called ahead for reservations. The place was completely packed with people waiting in line to be seated. Purev commented, "This place must be good because there are so many people waiting."
"It is very good," Eddie said. "Our friends, Rick and Glenn introduced us to this place. Their next door neighbors recommended it to them."
They discussed their menu options and finally decided on what to order. After the waiter took their orders, Eddie said, "Let me tell you about me and Jamie." He shared the story of how they met and their marriage. At the conclusion of his narration, he said, "As you can see, Rick and Glenn have been role models for us."
"They have been good examples to us as well," Scott said. He elaborated on his statement with Alonzo contributing his thoughts on the subject as they related their experiences with Rick and Glenn to Purev.
Purev's face reflected his amazement as he listened to the two couples stories. They could hear his astonishment in his voice as he asked, "Are these people for real? I just can't imagine anyone being so kind and generous. It almost sounds too good to be true. I used to think some of my friends were like Rick and Glenn but I was betrayed by them. Are they really as nice as you say they are?"
Scott smiled and said, "They are fiercely loyal to their friends and family. Does that mean they are perfect? I think not! In fact, we have seen Glenn get very angry at homophobic comments and he can't stand most religionists."
Eddie agreed, "Rick doesn't have any patience for organized religion."
Purev nodded his head in understanding. "I used to think that my friends would stand by me but most of them have told me I'm evil and that I would burn in hell for being gay."
"We've been told the same thing," Scott said. "People don't get it when I tell them to keep their religious beliefs to themselves. I don't need to hear their self-righteous judgments."
Purev nodded, "I agree, especially after the bullying I experienced at Lake Braddock High School the last week or so. I used to think that there wasn't any bullying going on at school; but I was dead wrong. It just hadn't been directed at me."
They continued to talk and learn more about Purev through the course of the dinner. When they had finished, Purev said, approvingly, "You were right. The food here is delicious."
Scott replied, "I'm glad you liked it."
They left the restaurant and climbed into their cars and drove the short distance to Edison High School. Scott parked the car and popped open the trunk and pulled out a couple of cushions, blankets and hand warmers.
Purev asked, "May I help you with those?"
Scott smiled, "Sure." He handed a blanket and a cushion to Purev. Scott closed the trunk lid and turned to take Alonzo's hand. They joined the rest of the spectators winding their way towards the stadium. Scott paid their entry fee and then led the way into the stands. He spotted Jeff high up in the middle section. Jeff saw them and waved.
Scott said, "There's Jeff."
Alonzo smiled, "His daughters are with him." They climbed the stairs to join their friends. Jeff had spread out a couple of blankets to save them seats. "Hey Jeff! Thanks for saving seats for us."
Jeff smiled, "No, problem. Who's your friend?"
Alonzo said, "This is Purev Javklan. Purev this is Jeff Dunn and his two daughters Marie and Caroline."
Purev said, "Nice to meet you."
Marie smiled and said, "Please sit with us."
Purev replied shyly, "Okay." He took a seat next to Marie.
Scott smiled and said, "You and the girls can check out the good looking guys."
Purev blushed and looked to see what reaction the girls had to knowing he was gay. Marie said, "It's okay, Purev."
He gave a sigh of relief. "Everyone at my school has stopped speaking to me because I'm gay."
Caroline frowned, "That's terrible. Which school do you attend?"
"Lake Braddock," Purev responded.
"Why don't you go to school here?" Marie asked.
"How could I do that?" asked Purev.
"If you request to attend Edison's International Baccalaureate (IB) program, you can attend classes here instead of going to Lake Braddock," Caroline replied. "We live in Hayfield Secondary School boundaries but we go to school at Edison because we want to earn an IB diploma. You could do the same thing."
"But wouldn't the kids harass me for being gay just like the kids at Lake Braddock?" Purev asked.
Marie said, "Not if you are friends with the football team."
"How would I become friends with anyone from Edison's football team?" Purev asked.
Caroline smiled, "We will introduce you to our friends, Robert and Kyle." She pointed to the football field. "Kyle is number 61 and Robert is number 32."
Purev looked doubtful, "Are you sure they won't hate me because I'm gay?"
"We're sure," Marie said, reassuringly.
Rick arrived home just in time to change clothes, grab a bite to eat and jump back in the car to drive to Ashley's awards ceremony. He walked into the library and found the meeting room where the Girl Scouts were to hold their meeting. He walked in and sat down next to me. We had come early since Ashley needed to be ready for her flag ceremony. One of the girls stood in front of the audience and asked us to stand.
I turned to look behind me where Ashley stood holding the flag. Ashley grinned and I gave her the thumbs up sign before returning my attention to the girl at the front of the room.
The color guard advanced with Ashley leading the way. They took up their positions at the front of the room and Ashley posted the colors as directed. We recited the Pledge of Allegiance before being seated.
Todd leaned over to me and whispered, "Ashley did a fine job."
I smiled and said, "Yes, she did."
Ashley and her companions returned to their seats with the rest of the Girl Scouts. The ceremony continued as I tried to keep the twins quiet. Cameron and Skye were very interested in the proceedings and hadn't made a peep during the entire time. When it was time for Ashley to receive her award, Mrs. Desatnik called us up to join our daughter at the front of the room.
Mrs. Desatnik said, "It is with great honor that we award Ashley with the Girl Scout Silver Award. We are proud of her and all of the work she put into her project. We would like Ashley to give a brief description of her project."
Ashley stepped forward and said, "I did a food and clothing drive for the Lorton Community Action Center and the Kononia Foundation. I placed collection boxes at libraries, schools and grocery stores. I advertised the drive in the local community newsletters and placed flyers on bulletin boards. I collected over six hundred pounds of food and hundreds of outfits for young children and teenagers. I also solicited cash donations from businesses to help prevent homelessness. Both the Lorton Community Action Center and the Kononia Foundation will use the funds as emergency relief to aid needy families."
Mrs. Desatnik smiled and said, "Ashley's service to the community has already benefited many people. I have letters of appreciation from both organizations to present to Ashley for her work." She held up two framed letters for all to see. She handed them to Ashley. Next, she held up the Silver Award and said, "We encourage all of you to strive to improve yourselves as well as your community. Ashley's project has not only helped others but has helped her to improve her leadership skills. Congratulations Ashley!" Mrs. Desatnik handed Ashley the award and then shook her hand. She then beckoned us to join her and Ashley for a photo. Todd stood next to the official photographer and took photos for us.
Rick hugged Ashley and said, "We are very proud of you, Ashley. Well done!"
Ashley smiled and said, "Thanks, Dad."
"Way to go, girl!" I said as I hugged her.
Ashley grinned, "You have always told me to dream big and to believe in myself. Most importantly, you believed in me even when I didn't believe in myself. Thank you for believing in me."
I smiled, "You know, Ashley, you are truly awesome!"
Ashley nodded her head and smiled at me as she returned to her seat. Rick grabbed my hand and led me back to our seats.
Todd said, "Ashley is growing up so fast, Glenn. She is turning into a beautiful young lady. She has a certain glow about her."
Rick said, "It is because she is confident in herself and her abilities."
"She has two very wonderful people who have helped her along the way," Todd said.
The awards ceremony continued as several other Girl Scouts received awards. Afterwards, we stayed for the reception. While we snacked on light refreshments, Mrs. Desatnik walked over to us, "Your daughter is truly remarkable."
"Thank you," Rick said. "We think she is pretty special ourselves."
"Whatever you are doing, keep doing it," she said. "It's a joy to have her in our troop."
She moved past us to the next set of parents. I said, "We need to go or we will miss Kyle's football game completely."
Rick asked, "Ashley, are you ready to go or do you want to spend more time visiting with your friends?"
Ashley said, "I'm ready, Dad."
We gathered up the boys who had availed themselves of the many types of cookies that were laid out on the table along with other types of snack food. I looked at JJ and Josh and started to laugh, "My, oh, my! I think we need a photo of those two faces." Their faces and hands were covered in melted chocolate.
Todd pulled out his camera and snapped a photograph. "I'll make sure you get a copy for their photo albums."
Rick and I picked up the two boys and took them into the restroom to wash them up. JJ protested, "I don't want my face washed!"
Rick responded, "Well, next time don't get chocolate all over it!"
We finished washing their hands and faces. When we returned to the reception, Todd asked, "All cleaned up?"
"Yes, we are ready to go now," Rick said.
We gathered up the children and herded them towards the car. I looked over at Rick, "It's like we're herding cats. Just as we get one going the right direction, another one strays or gets distracted."
Rick laughed, "That is so true."
We managed to get everyone settled into their seats and Rick started the car and drove us to the game. We paid our entrance fee and moved towards the stands. Jeff was there to meet us as we had sent a text message to Jeff that we had arrived.
"I'm glad you guys made it. We have saved you some seats next to us. Kyle is doing very well," Jeff said. "The score is 14 to 7 in Edison's favor."
We climbed up into the stands and sat down next to Jeff and his daughters. We greeted everyone. Scott said, "I'd like to introduce you to Purev Javklan. Purev, this is Glenn and Rick, and these are their children JJ, Josh, Ashley and David."
"Nice to meet all of you," Purev said.
I said, "Nice to meet you, too." I noticed that Purev had eyes for only David. I looked at David and noticed he was staring at Purev. I looked up to see if Rick had noticed. Rick was talking to Scott, so it was obvious he hadn't seen anything.
I sat down with the twins on either side of me. David took a seat next to Purev. David asked, "Where do you go to school, Purev?"
"I go to Lake Braddock but I'm thinking I might transfer to Edison," Purev said.
David looked sad, "That's too bad. I hoped that you went to Hayfield."
"Is that where you go to school?" Purev asked with interest.
"Yes," David replied. "I really like math and science."
Purev said, "I really like music and drama. I played the prince in the musical "Beauty and the Beast." I want to be an actor." He turned to Caroline and asked, "Does Edison have a good drama department?"
"Yes, it does. I'm taking drama classes," Caroline said.
My attention was diverted away from them when JJ said, "I need to go, Daddy."
I looked over at Josh and asked, "Do you need to go, too." When Josh nodded his head, I said, "Let's go then. Rick, I'll be back."
Rick nodded his head, "Okay, Babe."
When we returned to our seats, the teenagers had disappeared. I sat down next to Rick and asked, "Where did the kids go?"
"They went down to the concession stand to get some snacks," Rick replied.
Scott said, "Glenn, I have been talking to Rick about Purev."
"What about him?" I asked.
Scott related Purev's story to me. He ended by saying, "He really needs friends right now."
"I wondered if he was gay," I said. "I agree that he needs a support network. It's unfortunate that his parents have chosen to disown him."
"I want to take him in," Rick said. He looked at me when I didn't respond right away. I wasn't sure I liked taking in someone without getting to know them better.
"I think we need to talk it over before we make a decision like that," I responded. "Let's invite him to stay with us over the weekend so we can get to know him. I think we need to include the children in this discussion as well."
We were prevented from discussing it any further by the return of the children with their snacks. Purev was laughing and talking with David. I was quite surprised at the ease with which David was interacting with Purev. This was quite abnormal for David. He rarely spoke to anyone outside of the family and if he did, it was only to state facts and often ended abruptly.
Rick looked over at me with a surprised look and I replied to his unspoken question, "Yes, I have noticed."
We chatted with our friends and enjoyed the rest of the game. Of course, we cheered for our favorite wide receiver, who scored two touchdowns for Edison to win the game. As we were gathering up our things, I turned to Purev and asked, "Would you like to spend the weekend with us?"
Purev's downcast expression quickly turned into one of excitement, "Yes, I would love to spend the weekend with your family. I need to call Mr. Eccles to let him know what I'm doing."
Purev pulled out his cell phone and called Mr. Eccles. While they talked, Scott said, "Thank you for offering to let Purev stay with you for the weekend."
Purev said, "Mr. Eccles said it was okay with him; but he want to talk to you first."
"Hello. This is Glenn Lernier." I said.
"Hello, Mr. Lernier. I needed to speak with you for a moment. Are you friends of Scott and Alonzo?"
"Yes. You could say we introduced them to each other," I said.
"Good. I think I can trust you with the safety of my young charge, knowing that Scott trusts you," Mr. Eccles said. "You are aware of his situation?"
"Yes, Scott told us what happened. My husband's family disowned him when they found out he was gay," I said.
"Then you understand why I am worried about Purev," Mr. Eccles said.
"Yes, we understand. This is our address and phone number should you need to reach us," I said, giving him the information.
"Thank you, Glenn. I will look forwarding to meeting you and your family on Sunday evening. Please plan to dine with me and Purev when you come. I would love to get to know you better," Mr. Eccles said.
"Thank you for the invitation," I replied.
"Good bye," Mr. Eccles said and ended the call.
I handed the phone back to Purev with a smile. "It looks like you're staying with us for the weekend."
We carried our blankets and cushions back to the car and then waited for Kyle to leave the locker room. This time, Robert's parents picked him up from the game.
Kyle climbed into the van and buckled his seat belt. David said, "Purev, this is my brother, Kyle."
Purev said, "Hi. You really did a great job tonight. I watched how you handled the ball and I know I could never play that well."
Kyle smiled and said, "Thank you. I only did what I had to do to make the touchdown."
"Do you like going to Edison? I'm thinking of transferring from Lake Braddock. Caroline said you are a good student," Purev said.
Kyle blushed at the compliment, "I do okay. I do like Edison. I think you will like it, too."
Rick glanced at me as we drove towards our home. Once we arrived, Rick and I took the two little ones up to their beds. When we entered the kitchen, we were surprised when David asked, "I want Purev to sleep in my room. Is that okay?"
Rick looked over at me and I said, "Yes; however, you can't stay up talking all night long."
David finished his hot chocolate and then said, "Let's go upstairs and get out the trundle bed."
The two boys disappeared from the kitchen. We could hear them talking excitedly as they climbed the stairs.
Kyle said, "I think David likes Purev."
Ashley laughed and asked, "Do you think? They haven't stopped talking all night."
"I think Purev likes David as well," I observed.
Again, Ashley laughed, "Daddy, we all could see that they like each other."
"I'm glad they are staying in David's room. I'm tired and want to get some sleep," Kyle said.
"Okay, it's time for bed. Good night," I said.
The two teens gave us hugs and left the kitchen. Rick pulled me into his arms and said, "It's time for us to go to bed as well. Come upstairs, Babe."
We shut off the lights and followed the children upstairs. Once in our room, Rick said, "Let's get a quick shower." We undressed and Rick pulled me into the shower with him. After drying each other off, Rick pushed me down on our bed and said, "I'm going to make love to you like you have never experienced before."
I grinned up at him and replied, "I am ready and waiting."
|Prev||To be continued . . .||Next|
A Gay Family Friendly Post - http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/02/lgbt-families-wayne-vince_n_2063847.html?ref=topbar
Shelters for gay teens in the Washington DC area:
The Wanda Alston House - http://www.wandaalstonhouse.org/About-Us.html
LGBT Homeless Information http://www.nationalhomeless.org/factsheets/lgbtq.html
Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network - http://chapters.glsen.org/cgi-bin/iowa/northernva/home.html
The House of Dynasty - http://www.houseofdynasty.com/
Girl Scout Awards – http://www.girlscouts.org/program/highest_awards/silver_award.asp
Lorton Community Action Center - http://www.lortonaction.org/
Kononia - http://www.koinoniacares.org/