Alex went straight to the airport. He got a ticket for the first flight back home. Then left. He didn't say anything. He didn't do anything. He just sat in silence by himself.
He went through the plane flight not saying or word or doing a single thing.
He makes it home late at night. Almost midnight. When he arrives he just sits on the steps outside his house. He knows his dad's inside. He knows he's going to wake up.
He knows he'll have to explain why he's back early. Where he really was. What's really going on. So he just sits there. He sits and waits. He doesn't know what he wants to do. He truly doesn't.
He sits there and time goes by quickly. Before he knows it the sun begins to go up. As the sun goes up the front door opens and Alex's dad comes out.
"Alex?" He goes down the stairs and turns to him. "What are you doing here?" He notices Alex begins to cry. "What's wrong?" He sits down next to him and wraps his arm around him. "Alex.
" Alex doesn't say a word. "Let's go inside."
"I can't move." Alex blurts out.
"Alex..." He just hugs him and stars to tear up.
"I...I..." Alex takes a deep breath in and then begins to tell his dad everything, or at least the abbreviated version.
"Wow." That's all his dad says as Alex finishes telling his dad everything. "Oh, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to say it like that. It was just like that.
" He turns Alex's head so they look into each other's eyes. "I'm so sorry you never felt like you could come to me about any of this. I want to make sure you know that I love you.
I will always love you. I support you and everything you do. If you want me to help with this or just sit and be supportive, I'll do whatever you want."
"Thanks." Alex smiles.
"Do you think we could go inside? It's a bit cold."
"Yeah." Alex just laughs and his dad grabs his bag.
"I'll call off work today. We can order some Chinese food and watch a movie."
"That sounds perfect." They walk inside. "Can we watch Die Hard?"
"Of course! You read my mind!" They both laugh and close the door.
3 WEEKS LATER...
Alex and Bryce have not seen each other. They have not spoken to each other. But Alex has been doing fairly well.
Ever since he came out to his dad and told him everything, he's finally felt a weight come off his shoulders. He and his dad are closer than they've ever been before.
But he still feels like something is missing. He feels like just as he got his dad back, he lost Bryce.
But now winter break is over, and it's time to go back to school.
"Are you sure you don't want to wait a couple more days?" Alex and his dad stand by Alex's car.
"Yeah. I need a couple of days to settle in."
"You know though, if you need anything I'm just a short car ride away."
"I know dad. Thank you." They hug. "I really appreciate everything. I always will."
"Well, you know... I'm just that amazing." They both laugh.
"Oh geez. Now I've really gotta go." They both laugh again and Alex gets in the car and drives away.
Alex drives to school. To his dorm room. Unpacks. Then he just sits in his room alone. He knows what he's going to do next, but he's nervous.
He's been planning on going to Bryce's dorm room for weeks. He told himself he would go there right after unpacking his stuff.
So after a few more minutes he gets up and starts walking across the empty campus. Each step he takes makes him sweat. His mouth gets dry.
He eventually arrives at Bryce's dorm room and just stands there. He stares at the door and waits for the courage to knock. But he's frozen. He truly can't get the courage to move his arm up.
His heart begins to beat faster.
"Alex?" The door opens and Bryce's mom is standing there with a full box in her arms.
"What's going on?" He's just so shocked that he loses himself.
"Um... Bryce is not coming back to school this semester."
"What?" He thinks it and accidentally blurts it out.
"Yeah... um Bryce's father and I think it's best if he goes away for a while."
"There's a very nice private university across the country that we have connections with."
"When is he leaving?" Alex feels like he just got hit by a truck.
"Tomorrow morning." They just stand there in silence. "Um... do you think we could talk in here for a minute?"
"Sure." They walk in and take a seat.
"I just wanted to let you know that..." She breaths in. "I've noticed lately just how happy Bryce has been. He's been different. And I know that it's because of you.
For the longest time, I was worried he would become... become like his dad. But I could tell he was changing. He was changing into a man that I could be really proud of.
" He leans forward and grabs Alex's hand. "I want to thank you so much. I truly wish things had turned out differently. I really hope that things work out well for you.
I hope that someday the two of you will find your way back to each other. I truly do. It may be the one thing I want the most in the world. But things happen for a reason."
"Yeah." Alex truly has no idea what to say to this.
"Just let me know if you ever need anything." She stands up and Alex does the same. "Anything at all." They hug and walk over to the door.
"Actually, there is one thing I could use your help with." He turns to her.