Another short story

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This one I am not very proud of but hey ho, it’s all about exposure and stuff.

This one was also a bit more like life writing or more autobiographical that straight up fiction but I think it flows well and I quite like the dialogue in it.

So here it is:

Home Truths

“Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you. Happy birthday dear Steven. Happy birthday to you!” Everyone cheered at the end of the song. By everyone, that just meant Stevens sister Claire and his mum as who knows where his dad was currently. Steven hadn’t seen him since he was eleven and apart from the odd phone call here and there, he hadn’t really spoken to him either as every time he would call it would be late at night and he would be too drunk to even make sense of what he was trying to say. This sounds like it was an every few months’ thing but it was more like every year thing instead. So, no, dad wasn’t around and Steven couldn’t really give a toss. As today he was eighteen and he didn’t even have to speak to him if he didn’t want to, no matter how many times he called. By this point, he was just as much of a stranger as the guy who serves in a coffee shop that you visit on occasion, who vaguely recognises you in his hungover haze at nine o clock on a Saturday morning.

 

His mum had finally bought him driving lessons for his birthday as she was convinced that you can only start driving when you reach eighteen, not seventeen. So, last year she didn’t even consider getting him lessons and whilst Steven was a bit put out, he could see the funny side to it as his mum was a bit clueless on these sorts of things. Whilst it wasn’t a physical gift per say it was nice to finally have something that would go towards his future. The idea of the wind in his hair as he travelled through the countryside with no one to answer to made him smile and was something he was very much looking forward to.

 

Steven didn’t really have much planned for the day. Cake and tea with the family this morning then hopefully seeing his two best friends Adam and Kimberly later in the evening, besides that it was a quiet Saturday really. With it being early May the spring showers outside covered the ground: it felt nice to be indoors, both warm and cosy with his loved ones around him. But the one thing he couldn’t shake was the tight knot in his stomach. The kind that makes you feel both sick and dizzy at the same time. He knew why it was there and what he had to do to make it go away. Now that he was 18, today was the day he was going to come out to his mum.

 

He had known since he was thirteen that he was different from the other boys at school. Maybe the big thing was that he hated P.E and sports or maybe it was due to the fact he was also diagnosed with depression when he was thirteen. Whatever the reason, being seventeen and gay with no one knowing was both hard and frustrating. Especially when keeping your true self a secret and burying it deep down as far as it would go. Although it was hard keeping such a big thing under wraps, it felt nearly as difficult to come out to the people who had been in his life for what felt like forever. After four years of keeping the truth hidden, he finally gained the courage to lift the massive weight off his chest and that’s exactly what he did. He managed to gain the strength to come out to Adam, Kim and his sister but not his mother as at the time he didn’t want to include her in the people to come out to as he felt it would just disappoint her. No kids, being persecuted and judged by other people, the list went on but, after contemplating this for nearly a year, he felt now was the best time. Well, as good a time as any as for this kind of revelation!

 

“How does it feel to be old eh?” asked Claire as his mum went to get come plates. She was only two years younger than Steven but she was the more mature of the two. Being the eldest he couldn’t help but be overprotective of her but she was more than capable and clever enough to look after herself. When he came out to her she dealt with it in her usual mature way and took it all in her stride. “I kind of had an idea after never seeing you with a girlfriend. Well, apart from when you were 9 and you went out with Kelly Morris for three weeks.” He remembered that she laughed as she said this and made Steven feel at immediately at ease as she could always do in that supportive way. Steven was admittedly terrified she would disown him or grass him up to mum but those were worries that were totally unfounded and low and behold, Claire was as laid back as ever, thankfully.

 

“I dunno, I’ll tell you when I’m older” replied Steven with a nervous laugh. Claire picked up on the atmosphere almost straight away and asked what was wrong. “I want to tell Mum about me, you know. The real me. Today.” Whispered Steven. “Well, it’s about time bro. Try not to worry, though, you know what Mum is like. She may be ditzy but she loves you.” Claire embraced him in a tight hug and kissed him on the cheek. As she pulled away, she gave Steven a wry smile and said: “You’ve got this Steven.” She then turned and walked out of the room just as Mum was walking back in from the kitchen.

 

“Oh, where is she off to? I haven’t even cut up the cake yet. Claire come back and get this cake eaten!” exclaimed his mother as she placed the plates on the table. Steven couldn’t help but notice she had picked out the fancy China for the cake to sit on. A gesture he couldn’t help but feel both honoured and pleased about. “Claire’s just gone upstairs to do some homework, she will be back down later.” Lied Steven. Homework was the last thing on Claire’s mind on a Saturday, a fact they both knew but Steven just decided to run with it.

 

He pulled out a chair from the dining table for his mum and gestured for her to sit down. As she did, all the while looking slightly perplexed, Steven went and pulled a chair opposite her and sat himself down. As he lowered onto the chair, he took his mother’s hands into his own and looked her straight in the eye. The look on her face made him even more nervous, as it was that worried yet slightly confused expression every child knows their parents to have at some point in their lives. “Firstly, I just wanted to say don’t worry as it is nothing bad,” he said with that nervous wobble in his voice “and I want you to know that I love you.” “I love you too sweetheart but what’s wrong honey? You look like you’ve seen a ghost” asked his mother. Steven took a deep breath and just wanted to get it over with a quickly as possible. As he looked from his mum’s gaze down to the ground he said “There is no easy way to say this mum but” he paused slightly before the next word, as if to swallow all his doubts and then he just came right out with it.

“I’m gay. I’ve known since I was thirteen and even though I have told a few people, I didn’t tell you right away as I was terrified of what you would say.”  He took another deep breath and looked up into his mother’s eyes to try to work out how she had taken it. He was unsurprised to see her crying, he hadn’t even noticed one of her hands had escaped his and was covering her mouth. In that moment, the World began to fall away for what felt like an eternity. He too began to tear up, waiting for his mother to say something to him in response to her only son being gay.

 

“Oh, Steven” she began. “My beautiful boy. I just want you to know that I love you too. I am so sorry you felt you couldn’t come to me before now to have this conversation but I want you to know that I understand and I couldn’t be more proud of you and the man you have become.” Steven was in shock. So much so he didn’t even remember standing up and being held tight by his mum in a hug he never wanted to end. As they both cried into each other’s shoulders Steven finally felt accepted and proud to have such a wonderful mother. He finally felt like everything was going to be ok.

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