Would he be ok? Was it going to hurt? This and a thousand other questions raced through Simon’s busy mind as he smoothed the comforter. It had to be perfect. Perfect for Adam.

Just saying his name curved Simon’s lips into a smile. Dark lashes feathered above caramel eyes, set square jaw and the adorable chipped front tooth, Adam was beguiling.

Simon’s smile widened as he thought of running his hands over those corded muscles, not overly worked but perfectly defined. He’d always been trim, but since that night over a year ago, Adam had become obsessed with becoming stronger, faster, more agile.

The smile slid from Simon’s face. He went back to lighting candles and readying the room. Neither were virgins, but Simon’s belly did flip flops thinking about it.

Topped by Adam. Seemed like forever ago, and yeah a year plus change might as well have been forever. Since the rape, a word neither of the two had been able to mutter since it happened, things had expectantly changed.

Beaten unconscious, found by a tourist in an alley, Adam had been left for dead. The denial phase lasted three days after returning from the hospital; resulting in a crumpled, crying heap of Adam in the shower. Simon tried his best to be the quiet, supportive partner he wanted to be for Adam, but he wouldn’t talk about it. Any of it.

Knowing and feeling had been two separate and hard things to reconcile. His head got it; Adam was damaged at the moment, changed and yet his heart ached for the Adam he’d loved. After six months of sleeping separately, unable to see the possibility of things improving, Simon moved out.

His rationale may have been oversimplified. He had to leave so he wouldn’t resent Adam. Simon became just as empty as the shell that was Adam had looked; disheveled, vacant stare, eyes without light.

A month later, Adam, realizing that he needed help finally got a shrink. The therapy had been intense to say the least. And even though the doctor had told Simon in a private session that Adam most likely felt weak, Simon knew the kind of strength it took to get past something like this.

He made Simon love him more, but still tread precariously around him as they stayed in touch. Simon always hoping for a full reconciliation. He never even looked at any other men. His heart was Adam’s, always would be.

It leapt into his throat when he heard the doorbell.
Turkey, Christmas sales, family....that's what most people think of this time of year. But not everyone does.

Is there someone in your life that maybe you've lost track of? Or someone that you care about, but don't really want to bother with? Maybe it's a friend that you enjoy when he/she is up. However, that same life of the party can be a total party pooper when the mood swings the opposite direction. And you are busy or tired or whatever and just don't feel like dealing with that person.

So you just push that person to the back of your mind for now, deal with it later when you are more "up" yourself, right?

But what if that person was having an exceptionally hard time? Your words could make the difference between life and death. Would that make you reach out?

I've been on both sides of this coin. At the moment, I'm wishing that my friends would realize I've dropped off their radar. Part of me - you know the logical side - reminds me gently that people are people and as human nature is, we fail one another. But the soft center that gets too easily bruised, screams "Why am I so unworthy?"

I've been known to fall off before, but my core group was responsive, reminding me I was cared for. So I am not sure why things seem different, are hitting me harder this time. I probably just wore everyone out.

If I get past this episode, I hope I remember it the next time someone is bending my ear about their problems. Hopefully I will be in tune to see if someone has gone into hiding just hoping someone will look for them.

That would be something to be thankful for.



January 2011



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