Isaac lay on his bed, staring up at the ceiling. This night certainly had not turned out the way he’d planned. Not even close.
There was a soft knock on his door and he rubbed his arm over his eyes, hoping it came away dry. It didn’t. Still, he said, “You can come in.” And damn it, even his voice gave everything away.
His foster mother stepped into the room. “What’s going on, Isaac?” she asked as she sat on the side of the bed. “We expected you to be at the dance longer. Did you and Jonas have a fight?”
He’d laugh, but that would probably make him start crying again. Him and Jonas fighting? It was almost unbelievable. And not quite what you’d call what happened tonight. When he didn’t respond, Cristine put a gentle hand on his shoulder. “What happened?”
“Did you know?” he asked. Maybe he was the only dumbass who hadn’t figured out something was up with his boyfriend.
“Know what, Isaac?” He could hear the worry in her voice and knew he’d actually have to say it.
“That Jonas was enlisting in the Army. After graduation, he’ll be leaving for basic training.” He didn’t even know when exactly. He hadn’t stuck around to let Jonas give him the details. “Did you know?”
“No, but that’s great.” He stared at her, shocked she said that. “Isn’t it?”
He pushed himself up and wrapped his arms around his legs. “How can it be great? He’s leaving. He could be hurt or k-killed.” There went his voice, cracking again. “He could-”
“What?” she asked when he stopped. She’d always been good at getting more out of him than he’d planned to say.
“He could turn into my dad. He was in the Army, too. Did you know that?”
“We did. But, that’s not what turned him into the monster you grew up with. You know that, right?”
“Yeah,” he choked out. “But, it just-”
She put her arm around him. “Your fears don’t have to make sense, Isaac. But, you shouldn’t let them keep you from that boy you love so much. His dad and brother both served, too. And he’s been forever trying to live up to them.”
Isaac hadn’t thought of that as part of Jonas’ reasoning. And now he wanted to shout at him that it wasn’t necessary. That he loved him just as he was. He didn’t want him to be someone else. “I can’t do it,” he said “I just can’t.”
“Okay,” Cristine said. “I know it hurts now, but you’ll figure it out.”
He hoped she was right. because this, it was almost more than he could take. But, he’d learned early to start sealing his pain away. That’s what he’d have to do now, too.
Ha! I didn’t think I’d get both words in there for this week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday. This takes place right after my ‘ick’ piece from 2 weeks ago. I do have plans for Jonas and Isaac…eventually. I have a couple stories in the series to get through before that, though.