The next morning, Hayden climbed slowly out of his bed and took a much needed shower. He meanders slowly out of his room, with the school uniform in hand, and made his way to the bathroom. He looked himself in the mirror; he looks like he hasnt slept in days! But, to Hayden, he hasnt had any sleep in months. All of his dreams have been filled with Derek, and it's driving him crazy. He took a rejuvenating shower and slipped on his school uniform. Black trousers, with a black blazer, a white button-up shirt and a silk red tie. Hayden had to admit that he looked pretty good in the school uniform, but nowhere near how good Derek looked in it. He grabbed his backpack and headed off to school. 

Hayden can't figure out why Derek turns him on so much. He knows that he might be gay, but he doesn't want to be that right now. He hates the feeling of love for another boy; his father installed it in his mind that its morally wrong and is a win in the eyes of god, and thats what scares him; the fear of losing his fathers love. His whole upbringing was of catholic influence, and his father is pastor of the Church in town and also is a notorious homophobe.

 Hayden must keep his sexuality a secret at all costs. He walked up to the school and casually walked through the halls. He spots a group of boys laughing and shouting homophobic slurs at the boy in the middle. Hayden watched as the bigger group of guys intimidated the smaller boy, and he knew he needed to do something to stop this from happening. The boy looked frightened, and in that situation, who wouldn't be?

"if I see you eyeing me up again faggot, I'm going to slice your scrawny little throat." the biggest boy, Jason Briggs said. Jason is captain of the football team, the baseball team, and the lacrosse team.

 All teams have won at least one state championship in the last 4 years, and he was their star athlete. "hey! Leave him alone!" Hayden said. All 4 boys turned and glared at Hayden. He couldn't help but feel intimidated himself. "he didnt do anything to you! So, back off!" he added. "you a fag lover?" Jason said stepping towards Hayden with a menacing look in his eye. Hayden gulped nervously. "no... I'm just a guy who stands up for people who get bullied." Hayden said looking at the other boy. The boy smiled in gratitude and walked to his class. The boys surrounded Hayden; blocking any escape. "you don't want to be on my bad side, Miller!" he said trying to intimidate the smaller guy once again. 

"well... I certainly don't want to be your friend if you pick on people. You should be ashamed of yourself. That's not how a team captain should act." Hayden said. He was soon answered by a punch to the face by Jason. "that's for telling me off.. And THAT'S for helping out that faggot back there." he said as he kicked Hayden in the ribs. Hayden did the smart thing and stayed down. Jason walked off. Hayden slowly climbed to his feet as the boy from earlier rushed to his side and helped him up. "are you ok?" he asked. "yeah, I'm ok. I couldn't let them pick on the new kid on his first day." Hayden said as he stood up the best he could. "what gave me away?" he asked. Hayden smiled. "only because I've never seen you before. I'm Hayden; Hayden Miller." he said extending his hand. "Justin Cooley." he said taking Hayden's hand. "nice to meet you, Justin."

"likewise." he said smiling. 

"god, Hayden is adorable!" he thought to himself. 

"this kid is not that bad looking." Hayden said in his mind. Justin was Hayden's height, he had blonde hair, big brown eyes, perfectly white teeth, and looked about the same build as Hayden; maybe a few more pounds heavier, but they were pretty much the same in terms of height and weight. "I love his eyes." Hayden thought. "so, what's Your first class?" Hayden asked. "um..." he started as he looked at his schedule. "biology with Mr... Poranski."

"awesome! Me too!" Hayden announced. 

The two boys smiled happily and walked to the second floor. As the boys approached the door, Derek walks past the duo, and catches Justin's eye. "woah! He is HOT!" Justin said. "dont you think he's sexy, Hayden?" 

Hayden all of a sudden got angry. "are you saying I'm gay?!" he said with an evil look in his eye. Justin shuddered with nervousness. "n-no. I'm not saying that... Are you? Because it's--" Hayden grabbed a fistful of Justin's white shirt, and pushed him against the wall. Justin grabbed Hayden's wrists in fear. "I'm not.. Gay!" he said menacingly. Justin shook his head as he grew mire frightened. Soon, Hayden realized what he was doing, and let Justin go. "I-I'm sorry, Justin. I've been dealing with this feeling for a few years, and its--"

"driving you insane? you feel alone and unwanted and your afraid to come out because of the possibility of rejection? Been there, bro!" Justin laughed. "but, I can help you better understand yourself. I know that your going through a VERY hard time right now, and I want to help you as a return on you helping me with those guys back there." Justin said. Hayden started to cry next to the wall as he slid down and sat up against it. Justin following suit.

"I can tell that you are a good person, Hayden. And nobody can change that, much like you can't change who you are either. 

but, it's not like it's a bad thing. Because, no matter who you are, people will deep down still love you for you, and nothing else." he said taking Hayden's hand. 

Hayden looked down at the other boys hand intertwined with his, and it made Hayden feel weird; almost happy. "you have a friend who has been there, Hayden. And I'm not letting you go through this alone." he smiled. Hayden felt a tear roll down his cheek. "I've tried so hard fighting it, but no matter what I do, it gets worse." Hayden cried. "it will if you keep fighting it, Hayden. I started liking boys when I was 14, and I hated it. I tried so hard to fit in with everyone else, but it just... Didn't work out that way. But, I learned to accept it." he said. 

"what if I can't?" Hayden asked with water streaming down his face.

"you will, Hayden. You will." he smiled. "come on, we need to get to class." Justin added. As the boys walked to their first class, they were soon interrupted by Jason and his friends. "well well well... Look at this boys. Two for the price of one." he said giving Hayden and Justin an evil smile. Hayden put himself between Jason and Justin in an attempt to protect his new friend. "back off, Jason." he said. He gulped nervously as Jason grew angry. There was nobody around; Justin and Hayden were all alone. "I guess your a fag too huh, Miller?"

"I-I'm not gay..." Hayden said nervously. "oh, but you are. And I can tell. You and this fag are fuckin' each other aren't you?"

"no! I'm not--" Hayden was pushed up against the wall. "I can see it in you, Miller. Your as queerish as they come." Jason said. "you find me attractive Miller?"

Hayden didn't know what to say. He was so scared. "n-no... I'm not--" Hayden was interrupted by a punch in the face. "hey! Leave him--" Rusty, Jason's friend quieted justin by putting a hand over his mouth. Hayden staggered a bit, and tried to straighten himself out when another punch hit him in the jaw. "you find me attractive, Bitch? Huh?! You little faggot!" he said as he kicked Hayden more as he screamed for help, yet nobody came. "WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING?!?" Derek hollered. Jason took off down the hallway at the sight of Derek. He rushed to Hayden's side as so did Justin. Tears ran down Hayden's bruises cheeks as the situation grew less intense. "this is your fault!" he screamed in Justin's direction. "my fault?" he asked quietly. "I would have never been hurt if you didn't come to this school! I should have never helped you." Hayden yelled as he cried. "But you did! Because somewhere deep down, you know it's wrong to do this to people, and that's why you stopped them from hurting me. Now, let's get you cleaned up." Justin said as Derek helped Justin pick Hayden up. 

Hayden limped over to the bathroom and they started wiping off the blood from his face, and Hayden winced as they applied a slight amount of pressure to the wounds. "you can't let them get away with this, Hayden." Derek said. "I'm fine..." Hayden said. It was at that point that Hayden decided to learn how to defend himself. He hopes he will never have to, because everything has a rational solution, but, if push comes to shove, he will be able to protect himself, and Justin. 


Aaron Heights

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