After an afternoon of swimming, eating,
laughing and talking Larry and I finally get away from Chris
and Jason about eight
o’clock. The light of the day is fading quickly and the
sun is well below the western hills.
In the car we really kiss for the first time since this morning.
His mouth covered mine and our tongues fought it out. I could
cry with the amount of need that I have for him.
We drive down the hill from their house
and in a couple of blocks we’re at the intersection at Sand Hill road. I
reach over and take Larry’s hand. “You had a good
time didn’t you? They’re good guys.”
I feel Larry’s body tense and straighten and he yells, “Alex!”
Ellen Morgan drank too much, her husband
was on the verge of divorcing her, her daughter was married
to a man who couldn’t
hold a job and didn’t care, and she had just been hit
with a property tax bill that she couldn’t pay and on
top of that she had just run out of cigarettes. In seconds
none of that would matter because Ellen Morgan would be dead
and she was beginning to realize that.
In some part of her brain she knew that there was a silver
car sitting at the stop sign up ahead but the exploding pain
that was consuming her chest made all else seem as nothing
and even now a darkness that had been at the edges of her eyes
was closing in.
The, essentially driverless 4000 pound
car, veered slightly to the right of where it should have
been and plowed into Alex’s
BMW going fifty miles an hour. The impact was just behind the
driver’s seat and sent the smaller car into a wrenching
twisting flip that ended in the drainage ditch while the demolished
Mercedes continued on into the wooded area off to the right.
David and Mark
The Gulfstream G550 flew out over the Pacific in a wide banking
arc and crossed back over land well south of San Francisco
and just north of San Jose. It was losing altitude quickly
now and as it dipped down below the cloud cover David was able
to look out the window and see the lights of the peninsula
off to his left and directly below the reflection of those
lights shimmering off of the bay.
There was a distinguished gray haired
man sitting across from David and he said with a heavy German
the plane is yours for as long as you need it. Just tell the
pilot. They will do what you require.”
David looks away from the window. “Thank you, Jon but
you’ve done more than enough. I’ll be here for
a week at least. I’ll catch a commercial flight. Besides,
Mark will be here in a couple of hours and he may have other
ideas. In any event please pass on my sincere thanks. The Zander
Gruppe has always been very kind.”
The man asked, “What will you do
when we land?”
David said. “I’m being met. Mark has a friend
here who’s an Army doctor. He went to the hospital and
checked on Alex for us. He’ll meet us and fill me in.”
The limousine pulled up to the stopped
plane and David walked over to it just as the back door opened.
A man of about fifty
with close-cropped hair and a military bearing got out and
shook David’s hand. He pointed at the car.
“It’s not mine. I guess that you arranged for
it. They paged me at the hospital and said that it was waiting
for me.” He looked at the car like he still couldn’t
believe that it was there.
“Doctor, we really appreciate you doing this for us.
I just spoke with Mark and he’ll meet us at the hospital
in an hour or so. But there’s no reason for you to stay.
I just need you to fill me in on Alex’s condition.”
They climbed into the back of the car and as it began to move
the doctor explained what had happened.
“The lady driving the Mercedes had a heart attack. She
was probably dead before the impact. She impacted the boy’s
car right about on the left rear door and that caused the BMW
to flip over to the right and at the same time it flipped front
to back. It’s a solid car and it had side impact airbags,
which helped a lot. Alex was closest to the impact and he got
hit the worst. The other fella pretty much was able to walk
away although I tried to get him to stay in the hospital so
that they could check him over. Internal injuries are common
with this type of accident but you never know.”
Your friends Chris and Jason heard the impact but it sounded
pretty distant to them and they really didn’t understand
what was going on until the ambulance was already there. They
stayed at the hospital until all of the tests where done and
it became clear that all of the damage to Alex is superficial.
I finally got them to go home around two in the morning.”
David finally spoke. “Why is Alex
in the ICU?”
“Because he was unconscious for a while. The doctors
just want to monitor him through the night………..plus
the fact that he’s in some pain. They also did a CAT
scan to make sure that everything was okay with his internal
organs. Most of his injuries are bruising or muscle tearing
injuries. He’s gonna ache like hell but I believe he’ll
be fine. They may even have moved him to a regular room by
David asked, “Alex’s friend………..he
“We think so. I got a stethoscope on him for about thirty
seconds. He wants to be with Alex and that wasn’t always
possible. I haven’t seen him for a while, maybe he went
back to the university.”
David looked at him but said nothing.
As the limo pulled up to the hospital
the doctor said, “He’s
in room four of the ICU……unless the moved him.
David turned and shook hands with the
man. He said to the limo driver. “Take the doctor wherever
he wants to go, drop my bags at the St. Francis and have
someone meet me here
David walked into the ICU and found room
four. The lights had been turned down so that those who could
sleep did and
when he looked in room four he saw only a blanket-covered figure.
He walked slowly into the room and beside the bed saw a sleeping
man curled up into a ball that he assumed to be Larry. He stepped
carefully over him and bent over the bed and looked at Alex’s
battered face. There were just bruises, the result of being
in a car that had been flipped over and spun around. He glanced
at the instrument readouts over the bed and after a moment
he bent over and kissed Alex on the forehead.
David hunkered down next to Larry. He
reached forward and touched the boy’s hair. There was blood in Larry’s
hair and his sleep was restless. So much worry for a young
man to deal with. David stood and stared down at the boy. Finally
he bent back down and touched the boy’s shoulder.
“Larry!” His voice was a whisper “Larry!”
Larry said, “Alex?”
“No, Larry, my name is, David. I’m one of Alex’s
dads” He pulled a semiconscious Larry up by the shoulder.
Larry stood shakily and blinked away sleep
Larry was slowly gathering his wits and
did you get here?”
David moved Larry toward the hallway. “I
flew in a little while ago. I need to talk to you. Can we
get a cup of coffee?”
Larry said, “Wait!” and he went back and leaned
over the sleeping figure and then lightly touched Alex’s
hair. Finally he turned to David and whispered. “He seems
okay….don’t you think?”
David said, “Where are your shoes?”
Larry looked down at his bare feet and
then up at David. “I
dunno. I…I’m sure that I had shoes on………..before
David put his hand gently on Larry’s back. “It’s
okay, we’ll get you shoes……and after all
this is California.”
Neither one of them was familiar with the hospital and it
took awhile but finally they found the coffee shop and slid
into a booth.
They ordered coffee and the David asked, “Have
you called your parents?”
Larry’s head was down and he just shook it. “I’m
not hurt. A little achy but it’ll go away.”
“Larry, what’s your last
“Donovan.” He sighed.
David said, “Donovan Sintered Metal?”
Larry looked up slowly. “How’d
you know that?”
“A guess. I heard of the company………..somewhere.”
A voice boomed out and Larry jumped. “There you are!
Jesus you’re hard to find.”
Mark put one knee on the seat of the booth and leaned forward
and kissed David on the lips. Then he took one look at Larry
and instead of sitting next to David he slid in next to Larry.
He grabbed Larry’s hand and shook it. “I’m
Mark……………Alex’s other dad.” He
smiled. “Must get confusing.” Larry just looked
back with a stunned look on his face.
Mark looked at Larry for a moment and
then said, “Son,
are you feeling okay?”
Larry stared down at the table and his
hands began to tremble. Finally he put his hands shakily
to his face and said forcefully, “No!
I’m not fucking feeling okay! The only person…that
I ever loved…who loved me back…was almost killed
today and I’m not fucking feeling okay! I feel like shit!
Mark put his arm around the trembling
boy and pulled him over and hugged him. Larry was crying
and exhausted and finally
let himself be held until he eventually collapsed sobbing against
Mark. Instinctively Mark turned and kissed the top of Larry’s
head. He looked across the table into David’s green eyes
and wondered for the millionth time what he was planning.
Mark said quietly to David, “You might as well tell
me. I know that you’ve already made up your mind about
what needs to be done and it’ll save a lot of time if
you just give it to me all at once.”
David slid slowly around the circular
booth until he was next to Larry but on the other side from
Mark. He rested his hand
lightly on the boy’s head.
“I want to buy a condo or townhouse near the university.
Alex is going to need some space to heal in….what with
maybe needing a wheelchair…and other things.” David
waved his hand. “But the important thing is that they
need space, they need a home.” He sighed. “I wanted
to be sure about how they felt about each other………but
I guess that’s obvious.”
Mark said. “David, didn’t
we go through this in the beginning. The school wants first
year students to be in
“I feel certain that I can convince
them that my idea is best.”
Mark smiled broadly. “Sweetheart, there’s no doubt
in my mind that you can.” He looked down at Larry still
in his arms and spoke to him quietly.
“You want us to call your mom and
Larry disengaged himself from Mark’s arms and sat up.
He ran his fingers through his hair and seemed to pull himself
together. “No. I’m okay.” He picked up his
coffee cup with both hands and drank it all. He looked at David. “Did
you mean what you said about a condo………….for
Alex and me?”
David looked at Larry for several seconds
and then said, “Yes.”
Larry said quietly, “You don’t
David glanced up at Mark and then said
to Larry. “In
a way I feel that I do. And………the worst thing
that could happen is that you two would break up and in that
case I could always sell the condo or rent it, in a way it’s
just another kind of dorm.” He put his hand on Larry’s
shoulder. “But I don’t think that you’re
going to break up.”
Larry looked intently at David and said, “We’re
not gonna break up. I’m never gonna leave Alex………..and
I pray to God he never leaves me.” He started to get
up. “Lemme out. I gotta see how he’s doing.”
Mark slid out of the booth and Larry followed and then strode
off it the direction of the ICU.
Mark put one elbow on the table and laid
his face on his palm and with his other hand he played with
the salt and pepper
shakers. He spoke quietly to David. “You’re not
afraid that they’re too young?”
David spoke carefully. “They are young but I’m
not sure that that’s necessarily a bad thing.” He
reached over and touched the tips of Mark’s fingers with
his own. “Larry reminds me of you. I guess that’s
why I like him.”
Mark smiled. “Me? I was never that
David said. “He loves Alex, that much is for certain.
I think that he’s good for Alex……..and I
think that Alex is probably good for him.” David yawned
and rested his chin on his fist. “Lord, I’m tired!
By the way, we’ve got a room at the St. Francis if we
ever get a chance to use it. Did I tell you that I met Larry’s
mom and dad once?”
Mark sat up. “No you didn’t.
Was this before or after the guys became roommates?”
David looked up and smiled. “You’re so suspicious.
It was a couple of years ago. Some big cocktail party thing
that we did for potential investors………his
dad’s nice………..his mom is one of those
women that makes you wonder why the guy married her. Nice family
company though……..started by the grandfather.”
Mark said. “Alex told me that they had virtually kicked
Larry out because he’s gay. Send him here to get him
away from them.”
David yawned again. “I could see
the mother doing that but not the dad.”
Mark reached over and held David’s hand. “So
how much is this condo gonna cost?”
“Well, till we find one no one knows but my guess is
that we could buy Milwaukee for less. I’ve got someone
working on it.” Mark groaned in mock despair.
David said. “Did you stop and see
“Just for a second. He was asleep but other than superficial
stuff he didn’t look too bad.”
David looked at his watch. “It’s almost six. Let’s
get back there and see what’s going on. The doctors should
be moving around soon.”
Mark and David stopped in the hallway
outside of Alex’s
room. Like all of the rooms in the ICU this one had a large
window and they could see Larry standing next to the bed holding
Alex’s hand. The boys were talking quietly and then Larry
bent and wrapped his arms gently around Alex’s head and
then slowly kissed him. They both looked up when David and
Mark walked in.
When Alex saw David and Mark he began
to speak but then seemed to choke up as David bent over the
bed to kiss him. Larry tried
to move away but Mark held him by the arm. Larry tried to pull
away but looked up at Mark’s face and then seemed to
relax. Mark put his arm around Larry’s neck and pulled
David looked into Alex’s eyes. “How
bad are you hurt?”
Alex wiped his eyes with the back of
his hands and said, “They
said that I’m okay. It hurts a lot though.” David
lifted the edge of the blanket and looked at what he could
see of Alex’s body. He sighed.
David touched Alex’s face. “Nothing bad is gonna
happen. The bad part is over.” David looked around. “I’m
gonna see if I can talk to a doctor.”
He turned to Larry. “I want you to allow a doctor to
really examine you.” Larry started to protest but David
interrupted him. “I don’t want to be in the position
of explaining to your parents that you could have been saved
from dying if we had only insisted on an examination.” David
turned to Alex.
“Alex, we need to have a doctor examine him and he’s
been so busy making himself crazy over your condition that
he hasn’t allowed that. Get him to agree.”
Alex lifted his head. “Larry, just
fucking do it. Do it for me.”
Larry looked up at Mark in frustration.
Mark smiled and said, “You
have no idea what you’re up against.”