The link brings them to an online folder with every video, audio, picture, and text involving the two of them. Everyone in the room begins to talk. Some people start to laugh. Some are gasping.
Some are whispering. Some are outright beginning to make jokes about it.
Clay looks around and quickly stands up, He pushes through people as he makes his way down the bleachers.
It feels like the longest 30 seconds, but he makes his way down without stepping on too many people.
He begins looking around for Bryce, but everyone is starting to stand up and he can't see him. He looks for a couple more seconds before a hand grabs his arm.
"Clay." He turns and it's his friend Tony, he looks concerned. "Do you need a ride home?"
"Yes please." Clay is holding back tears as his heart begins racing.
Clay and Tony run out of the gym.
Bryce freezes as he sees the text. For a couple of seconds, he stops breathing. His entire body shuts down. He doesn't think about anything. He doesn't do anything.
Then a hand on his shoulder makes his entire body jump.
"Bryce." He turns and both Justin and Zach are giving him this look, a look that Bryce hates more than anything else... a look of pity.
Bryce jumps to his feet.
"Hey, Bryce." Justin tries walking up to him, but Bryce freaks and starts walking away.
He then bumps into someone, Monty. The two meet eyes and for a second he can see sympathy in Monty's eyes. Monty, out of everyone, knows exactly how he feels.
Monty understands the fear of this moment. But then a group of guys from the team walks up, laughing.
"Look at the fag! I've got a soda bottle in my locker if you want it? Or do you only do beer bottles?" A faceless guy in the back of the group shouts and Bryce can visibly see Monty change.
"Yeah. I was just thinking, this faggot probably only threw all those parties for those bottles. Are was it to watch all of the team get drunk and shirtless?" They all laugh.
"Now I understand why you take so long changing in the locker room. You bust be so preoccupied starring at this beautiful ass." Monty turns around and rubs his ass towards Bryce.
"Fuck. You." Bryce continues walking away, slowly speeding up and out of the gym.
As he exits the gym he sees Clay walking away with Tony, fast.
"Clay!" He shouts and they stop.
They both turn around. Clay starts walking forward, meeting Bryce. They are about to move forward and kiss, but they both stop. The look around, people coming out of the gym and starring.
"Will you make sure he gets home safely?" Bryce looks at Tony.
"Of course." Everyone is quickly filing out of the gym and watching. "We should get going now." Tony walks to his car and gets in.
"Come with us." Clay goes to grab Bryce's hand, but he pulls it away.
"I should go home. See if my parents got the text."
"You should talk to your parents as well."
"I will." Clay is holding back a lot of emotions right now. "Just text me when you get home. Let me know your safe. Then we can talk about all of this. I don't want you to be alone right now."
"Thanks for caring." Clay walks to the car and Bryce goes towards his.
TEN MINUTES LATER...
"Just remember that I'm here if you want to talk about this." Tony parks the car.
"Thanks." He opens the door and walks out.
"It will all be alright."
Clay walks to his front door and opens it. The house is quiet, which isn't unusual. Both his parents should be home.
He walks into the kitchen and sees them both sitting at the dining room table.
"Hey Clay." The room is quiet and somber.
"Hey mom." He takes a seat across from them. "Hey dad." He closes his eyes and breathes for a few seconds, his heart pounding. "Did you... get the text?"
"Yes." His mom says, his dad silent.
"Did you see it all?"
"No. But enough." All she wants to do is hug him, but she's trying to stay tough for him.
"I'm sorry." Tears begin to come out of Clay's eyes. "I'm so sorry." Clay's mom quickly runs around the table and begins hugging him.
"You have absolutely nothing to be sorry about." She grabs his head and stares at him in the eyes. "You are still my perfect little boy no matter who you like."
"Actually..." It's starting to hurt for Clay to breathe as he cries harder. "I think I may love him." That makes his mom smile and she hugs him harder.
Clay looks over to his dad. His dad turns his head to look at Clay. For a second Clay can see the fear in his dad's eyes. But then a small smile grows on his face.
They just look at each other and his dad just nods as his smile grows bigger. Clay nods, and in those few seconds, they say everything they need to each other.
5 HOURS LATER...
For the first hour, Clay and his parents just sit in silence. They hugged. They cried. The took it all in. After they all calmed down they began to talk.
Clay let it all out, with a few edits when it came to the more explicit things. At first, Clay's mom was furious. She was ready to find this mysterious person and take them to court.
After a few hugs and words from Clay's father, she calms down.
By the time five hours pass, they are all exhausted. But they all know there is no way any of them can sleep right now.
"How's Bryce doing?" Clay's mom asks.
"Oh shit!" Clay completely forgot about him.
Clay grabs his phone and looks at it. There are tons of texts and notifications from dozens of people. There are hundreds of notifications on all of his social media. But nothing from Bryce.
He texts Bryce and waits. Nothing. Then he calls. It goes straight to voicemail.
"I'm worried about him." Clay looks to his parents.
"Why don't we go to his house and check on him. That will give us a chance to speak to his parents." She looks to her husband and he grabs the car keys.
"Thank you." Clay looks to his parents, smiling.
They walk to the front door. As Clay opens the door there stands Bryce. Bryce has one large black eye. His cheek is swollen and bleeding. His eye is red and blood is spilling out.
His shirt is ripped. He's wearing no shoes. He's tilting towards one side. His lower lip is big, purple, and bleeding. Clay looks into his eyes and all he sees is sadness.
"Can I stay the night?" Bryce mumbles.
Clay looks back at his mom then back at Bryce, a single tear going down Bryce's cheek.