Best Friends Forever

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----------=BigCloset Retro Classic!=----------

How far will a person go for their friend?

Best Friends Forever

by Jennifer Sue

Copyright  © 2014, 2016 Jennifer Sue
All Rights Reserved.

 
Admin Note: Originally published on BigCloset TopShelf on Tuesday 10-28-2014 at 09:54:57 pm, this retro classic was pulled out of the closet, and re-presented for our newer readers. ~Sephrena
 
Divider licensed for use in publishing from Photoshopgraphics.com ~Sephrena.


 
Kyle didn’t understand. Every time he’d played with other kids, the adults always told them to share their toys. Now they were telling them to keep the ball away from the other kids! The adults had everyone was running around kicking a big black and white ball that they called sock her. He’d been told to never hit anyone, especially girls. Yet now they were supposed to sock her? The other guys seemed to understand what was going on except for the boy who looked a lot like a girl. What was worse was that boy’s dad was always yelling at the confused boy, almost as much as his own dad yelled at him. Just then the ball rolled to a stop at the feet of that other boy. As he stared down at the ball another boy ran up knocking him to the ground and kicked the ball away leaving the first boy on the grass crying. Then Kyle saw a massive wet spot appear at the boy’s crotch. Even at three he knew peeing yourself was not a good thing and that the crying boy would really be in trouble with his dad. Feeling compelled to help, Kyle ran over to the soggy sobbing boy and did the only thing he could think of that could help. He opened his fly and peed right on top of the large spot. The yells and screams of the adults as well as the laughter of the other boys ended all other action.

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The first week of August and the third day of football practice, the routine was already well established. By the second turn they were at the rear of the pack. As the rest of the guys pounded around the track, Alex Hanford and Kyle Deacon's were once more toilet paper. The guys had already nicknamed Alex ‘Toilet’ and Kyle ‘Paper’. That was the coach’s doing. On the second day of football practice he’d angrily called the duo ‘Toilet Paper’ because no matter what they did, they always brought up the rear. The rest of the team thought that was hilarious and the nicknames were bestowed.

Just slightly ahead Kyle kept an eye on Alex as they trotted along. Coming out of the second turn on their second of four laps Kyle nudged their effort to the outside of the track. A few seconds later the jocks of the team could be heard approaching from behind as the duo was about to be lapped. The previous days the jocks had bumped and jostled the slower boys while making nasty comments. Kyle’s strategy worked as the faster guys were feeling the strain and didn’t make the effort to travel the extra distance to make contact although it did nothing to stop the verbal abuse.

By the time they began their last lap they were the only ones remaining. Since the laps were the end of the daily practice, the others were already heading home. It was just the coach and their disgusted fathers waiting at the finish line. As they entered the third turn, Alex stumbled and went down hard. Kyle promptly headed for his best friend.

Alex was sprawled on the track silently crying. The tear streaks on his dusty face told Kyle his friend had been crying before he fell. Instinctively he knew Alex had been blinded by the tears and tripped over his own feet. Kneeling, Kyle helped his buddy to his feet as the cursing of their fathers reached their ears.

Alex almost fell again as he tried to complete the run but his will to go on erased the last of his remaining endurance. Kyle slipped under his friends arm and helped him hobble to the finish.

“Jesus Christ, Alex, just how fucking pathetic are you? I’m freaking embarrassed to be your father! Move your God damned ass!” Barry Hanford yelled at his poor excuse for a son.

Coming into the fourth turn Alex did his best to stop his tears knowing he’d really get chewed out if his dad saw his tears. “I’m sorry, Kyle,” Alex sniffled as he did his best to stem the tears.

“Hey, there’s nothing to be sorry about,” Kyle reassured him.

“Yeah there is,” Alex continued. “You’ve been holding back to help me and your dad gives you grief for helping the DAMNED SISSY. Don’t try to deny it. I’ve heard him say it.”

“My dad is as big an ass as your dad,” Kyle reassured his buddy. “They know neither of us want to play sports yet they make us go out for every team! Now that we’re starting middle school, we’re finally old enough for football so here we are. Once more they’re trying to force us to be jocks because they know everyone who tries out for middle school sports makes the team. On the bright side we’ll be fourth string players so we should only be in for a play or two per game.”

“I know, but I’m just so tired of all the crap,” Alex sighed as they plodded toward the finish. “I’m just so damned tired of everything. I’m sorry to be such a burden for you. You deserve a better friend than me.”

‘Hey, you’re not a burden! Besides,” Kyle declared. “I couldn’t ask for a better friend than you!”

“It’s the other way around,” Alex sniffed. “You’ve always been there for me. I remember when we first met. I’d just wet myself and was scared out of my wits cause I knew my dad would be so angry that I was a little baby. Suddenly you were there. You pulled out your pecker and pissed on me! I just cried harder. You got in a lot of trouble and my dad took me home. He chewed me out but that was it. It was only later I realized you peed on me to hide the fact I’d wet myself.”

“Yeah, remember my punishment was to apologize in front of everyone and to promise never to pee on anyone again,” Kyle chuckled. “But we became best friends and the rest of the kids on the team stayed away from me.”

“And I’ve been a burden for you ever since,” Alex sighed. “Even when we started school you were by my side. I can’t even begin to thank you for all the grief you saved me. You deserve better.”

“You’ve never been a burden,” Kyle smiled. “We like the same things and hate the same things. Neither of us like being bullied. Except for our dads we’ve stopped most of the butt heads.”

“But it’s not fair to you,” Alex insisted as he fought of the tears threatening to fill his eyes as they finished their laps. “You’ll be better off without me.”

Just then their dads were there yelling and cursing as the coach walked away shaking his head. The dads took their sons to their trucks to head home.

The dads, Keith Deacon's and Barry Hanford had become good friends. They shared the frustration of non-athletic sons and commiserated their common issues. They took the boys camping and fishing and to minor league baseball and hockey games. They simply could not understand that their sons were not in the least interested in sports.

That night Kyle had a tough time falling asleep. Something was niggling at his brain but wouldn’t come into full thought. For the fiftieth time he rolled over in frustration and squeezed his eyes shut as he tried to clear his mind and force himself to sleep. Suddenly his eyes flew open and he sat upright. Alex! For the last several weeks he’d been growing more and more depressed and being signed up for middle school football had made things much worse! The last phrase Alex had spoken rang in his ears: “You’ll be better of without me.” He hadn’t said YOU'D be better off, he said YOU'LL be better off! Alex was going to kill himself!

Kyle leapt out of bed and hurriedly dressed stuffing his phone in his pocket. A quick glance at the clock told him it was 1:00am. Rushing into the garage he grabbed a flashlight then his bike and pushed it outside. Once the door was closed he leapt into the seat and took off to their special spot.

Normally it was an hour bike ride to the Army Corp of Engineers flood control lake that doubled as recreational area, another 25 minutes down the hiking/biking trail that ran around the lake, and five minutes through the trees and undergrowth to the site. At one particular isolated point on the trail a stream ran down a steep valley into the lake. The trail dipped into the valley and circled the steepest portion. Curious, the boys pushed their bikes into the forest, chained them to a tree, and followed the stream to a spot where the it burbled over a rocky three foot drop. The secluded site was peaceful, relaxing, and private. They went there as often as possible.

It was difficult seeing the trail in the darkness of the overhead tree canopy. Still, Kyle made good time covering the trip in about half the normal time. His fears for his best friend were realized when he saw Alex’s bike leaning against a tree where they headed down to the stream. Whipping out his phone he dialed 911.

“911. What is the nature of your emergency?”

“My best friend is trying to kill himself,” Kyle almost screamed into the phone. “Please send paramedics ASAP!”

“What is your location?”

“We’re just off the hiking trail at Burnside Lake. The closest access is the North Creek parking area, we’re about a half mile down west side of the trail. You’ll see two bikes. I’m pointing mine down the hill in the direction I’m going. Please hurry!”

“I’m contacting the police and paramedics. What’s your name and your friend?”

Kyle proceeded to give the operator the information as well as the names, phone numbers, and addresses of their parents as he made his way through the dark underbrush, tripping and stumbling several times.. By the time he heard the babbling water, he’d finish giving the details.

“He’s here,” Kyle exclaimed. “He’s sitting against a tree and it looks like he’s asleep. Shit, there’s an empty bottle of vodka and an empty bottle of sleeping pills! Please send help as quickly as you can! I’m going to drag him to the creek to see if the cold water can wake him up.”

With that Kyle put his phone down and dragged his unconscious friend to the creek. Laying him by the water he cupped his hands and splashed water onto his face. Alex spluttered a little bit and his eyes fluttered open only to shut quickly again. Kyle splashed more water on Alex’s face. Once again Alex spluttered and his eyes fluttered open. Kyle slapped his cheek sharply several times and called out his name. Despite the darkness their faces were so close Alex’s eyes slowly focused on his friend. An expression of confusion crossed his face as he tried to figure out what was going on.

“Come on Alex, wake up,” Kyle desperately urged his friend. “Come on! I’m not going to let you die!”

“K...Kyle... wh... what are you doing here...” Alex mumbled as his eyes fought to focus. “You can’t be dead too! You’ve got to live! I killed myself so you could live!”

“Whoa, Alex, we’re both alive,” Kyle reassured his foggy brained buddy. “I figured out what you planned and came out here to stop you. Alex, you’re my best friend. I NEED you, knucklehead. Besides, as my best friend you’re a great excuse for keeping me out of sports! Now come on, wake up!”

“You don’t understand,” Alex sniffed as he slowly began to return to at least a partial sense of reality. “Please, just let me die!”

“No way! You’re my best friend! Now come on, let’s stand up and walk a bit,” Kyle urged as he helped Alex to his feet. Kyle pulled an extremely disoriented Alex to his feet ducking his head under the wobbly boy’s arm to support him. It took several attempts and falls until they managed to get out of the creek bed. Both boys were wet, muddy and chilled as they stumbled out of the muddy creek bank. There was no way Kyle was going to get Alex up the steep gully to the trail. With Alex leaning heavily onto him he began to drag/walk him about the small area.

“Please, just let me die,” Alex whined as he numbly stumbled alongside his friend.

“Not going to happen,” Kyle declared. “You’re not leaving me here alone! I need you.”

“No you don’t,” Alex sniffled as he began to cry. “I’m the biggest burden you have. You’ll be better off when I’m dead.”

“That may be your opinion but it sure as hell isn’t mine,” Kyle declared. “Now come on, let’s walk this off until help arrives.”

Just then they tripped over a tree root and both crashed heavily to the ground. Alex was openly crying as Kyle struggled to get his friend back on his feet. About halfway up Alex started to heave and choke. Kyle quickly knelt down and held Alex on his hands and knees as the suicidal boy became violently sick. Gouts of foul smelling acidic vomit spewed from Alex. In between gushes, Alex moaned piteously. After a few moments when the heaves ceased, Kyle helped Alex to the stream so he could rinse the vile remnants from his mouth. Again they slipped and fell several times as they struggled up the muddy bank. By then they were totally soaked and covered nearly head to toe in mud.

“Please, as my best friend, I’m begging you to let me die,” Alex cried.

“Tell me why you want to die,” Kyle replied firmly as he made Alex walk. “Don’t give me any of that burden crap either. I want the truth!”

“You want the truth? I’ll give you the damned truth,” Alex almost screamed as he shivered in the embrace of his friend. “Then you’ll let me die!”

“So what’s so terrible you want to die?” Kyle asked.

“I’m a lie! My entire life is a lie! I can’t take it anymore! I can’t hide who I am and I can’t be who I really am,” Alex cried. “If I don’t kill myself, my dad will when he finds the note I left them!”

“So what’s your big secret?” Kyle softly asked as he tried to calm his friend.

“Duh! Look at what I’m wearing! I’m not a boy. I HATE being forced to behave like a boy! Anyway, when dad finds out, he’ll kill me. Itll be better if I die this way,” Alex sobbed.

It was only when Alex pointed it out that Kyle noted his best friend was wearing a very muddy frilly nightgown! “So you’re wearing a nightie. Neither of us are tough macho boys,” Kyle retorted. “That’s why we’re such good friends! We have each other’s back.”

“You don’t understand! No one understands! I’m not a damned boy,” Alex wailed. “I’m a girl! My boy’s body is just a birth defect! But no one would ever believe me! Look, we’re both starting puberty. Do you have any idea how terrified I am of getting all hairy with a deep voice and a pecker that gets hard? Knowing those things are starting to happen to me is more than I can handle! I HAVE to die!”

“Okay, so that explains the nightgown,” Kyle acknowledged. “In fact it explains a lot of things. But it sure as hell isn’t reason enough to kill yourself! Damn, Alex, you’re my best friend! Girl or boy makes no difference to me! It’s the person you are I like!”

“Really? You’re not upset I’m a girl stuck in a boys body?” Alex asked in a trembling voice.

“The only thing I’m upset about is not realizing you’re a girl!” Kyle retorted.

“I tried to hide it,” Alex sniffed.

“I know,” Kyle said. “You did a good job, too. But killing yourself isn’t the answer. Alex... no... make that Lexi! You’re still my best friend and I’ll help you get through this. I’ll stand up to your dad if he gets stupid about this! I know your mom would rather have a live daughter than a dead son and I think your dad will eventually reach the same conclusion. Now, let’s get up and walk this off until help gets here!”

“Lexi... Lexi... Lexi...,” Alex softly muttered as they stumbled about.

For the next twenty minutes they stumbled around the small clearing. Then they heard the sound of ATV motors up on the trail. They could make out the flickering of headlights up on the trail. When the engines shut down they heard shouts from the trail.

“We’re down here,” Kyle yelled back as he stooped to pick up the flashlight where he’d dropped it to shine it up toward the trail.

The sounds of men pushing through the undergrowth and the bouncing beams of their flashlights showed they were rapidly approaching. Kyle kept shouting “Down here!” and waving his flashlight as he continued to keep Alex moving. It took the rescuers five minutes to bull their way to the boys.

Both boys were shivering, wet and covered with mud. The one wearing a nightgown was clearly the one in distress. The other boy looked relieved and exhausted. The paramedics quickly took Alex and laid him on a stretcher they’d carried down and strapped him in place.

Alex tried to resist but Kyle quickly soothed. “It’ll be okay. Lexi. They only want to help you get better so you can be the girl you were always meant to be! Come on girlfriend, just let them help you!”

The rescuers instantly understood the nature of the suicide attempt and the powerful protective friendship Kyle felt. Whatever their feelings towards transsexuals, they knew it was critical to treat the suicide victim as if she was a girl/ Furthermore, Kyle’s reassuring words convinced Lexi to cooperate with the paramedics trying to help her. Hastily but efficiently the professionals cleared the mud off her arms to check her vitals and begin an IV.

Kyle was shaking as he showed the rescuers the empty pint flask of vodka and the vial of sleeping pills as well as the vomit. They found a backpack with the clothes Alex had worn to get to the site neatly folded inside. They assumed he’d brought the nightgown in the backpack and changed once he’d arrived. A park ranger contacted the county dispatch to inform them they found the boy and while he was still in danger he was alive, awake and that he was being prepared for transport. Once they stabilized Alex, they began the arduous task of carrying the stretcher up to the trail.

“Kyle! Kyle! Please.... don’t let them take me away...” Lexi screamed as she struggled against her bonds.

The paramedics began to worry that her struggles would make them trip. However they knew she couldn’t be sedated.

“Relax, Lexi, I’m right behind you. I’ll stay with you,” Kyle reassured his best friend. “You know there I no path back to the trail. I’m right here following the guys carrying you. Just relax, Lexi.”

The paramedics were relieved that their patient settled down as they struggled up the slope through the underbrush. The entire rescue party knew the boy/girl strapped to the stretcher would be dead if not for her loyal friend. When they reached the trail, they strapped the stretcher to the back of a large ATV. A smaller vehicle led the way with Kyle on the unit behind Lexi so the suicidal boy could see her friend.

When they reached the parking area they transferred Lexi to a gurney and loaded her in a waiting ambulance. Once more the still unbalanced youth began to thrash about as she screamed for Kyle. Knowing that Kyle was a calming influence on the distraught youth they asked him to join them in the ambulance. Kyle verbally kept Lexi occupied during the trip to the hospital.

Upon arrival at the emergency department, they wheeled Lexi into a treatment room allowing Kyle to accompany her. The emergency staff had been forewarned that Kyle had saved Lexi and kept her calm so allowed him in the treatment room.

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When the phone rang for the third time after going to the answering machine the first two times, Barry Hanford sighed and picked up the phone. “This damn well better be a fucking emergency!”

“I’m sorry to disturb you, sir. I’m Ranger Parks from Burnside Lake. Are you the father of Alex Hanford?”

“Why the hell are you calling me at this time of night to ask such a dumb question? The kid’s asleep in his room,” Barry snapped. “This couldn’t have waited until morning?”

“No sir,” responded the ranger. “I just helped the paramedics evac your son from the hiking trail at Burnside Lake. He’s in an ambulance heading for the hospital. He tried to kill himself.”

“WHAT?” Barry yelled. “On his way to the hospital! You’re fucking nuts! That’s impossible! Alex is in his bedroom!”

Although only able to hear her husband’s side of the conversation, Sally learned enough to slip out of bed to check on Alex. She found his bed was neatly made with an envelope lying in the middle. Alex was nowhere in sight. “Barry, Alex is not here,” Sally called out as she rushed in to tear open the envelope.

By the time Barry rushed to the bedroom with the phone Sally was crying as she waved the neatly typed note. “Barry, he went to Burnside Lake to kill himself!”

The ranger heard Sally’s anguished. “I think your son will pull through. A boy named Kyle somehow figured out what was going on and found him, kept him moving and called for help.”

Ten minutes later Barry laid a patch of rubber as they peeled out of their driveway headed to the hospital.

At the Deacon's home it was Jill who answered the phone. As she listened to the ranger explain what had occurred, she headed to Kyle’s bedroom to verify he was missing. Fifteen minutes later she and Keith were headed to the hospital.

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As they wheeled Alex into a room Kyle quietly explained that Alex had tried to kill himself because he felt he was a girl. The weary boy firmly advised it would be best to refer to their patient as a girl named Lexi. That knowledge helped determine the treatment Alex was given. The pitiful lad wasn’t the first transsexual suicide they had treated. Knowing what Alex had ingested and that he’d vomited, the emergency staff quickly administered counter medications as they stripped and cleaned him. By then Alex was nearly incoherent but every time they attempted to ease Kyle from the room Lexi began to thrash and scream. Kyle’s words of friendship and caring for his best friend soothed the distraught boy/girl. Once they realized Alex wouldn’t let Kyle leave they brought disposable booties and a scrub shirt for Kyle to change so he could get out of the damp muddy clothes he was wearing. A hasty wipe down with damp paper towels cleaned the worst mud from his body. The entire time he had to keep up a soothing conversation with Lexi.

When the Hanford's arrived at the emergency room, they were assured Alex was being given the best of care but that they had to fill out the paperwork before they could see him. Sally was nearly hysterical and told the clerk to go to hell as she needed to immediately see her child. Barry told the clerk he’d stay to complete the paperwork so they could let Sally go to Alex. In truth Barry was simply disgusted and debated whether or not he even wanted to see his son. The suicide note, which Sally had tearfully read to him as they drove in, had cut him to his manly core.
 

Dear Mom and Dad,

I’m sorry I’ve been such a disappointment to you. Even though I hated all the sports and stuff, I tried to be a boy like you wanted. But inside, in my heart, I’m a girl. Doing that guy stuff just didn’t work. As long as I can remember, you punished me for being a sissy and made me do stuff to man up. But I’ve never been a boy! When I tried to tell you how I felt, you’d get angry and punish me - so I learned to hide my true self. You know I was never happy. Soon I’ll start puberty. I just can’t handle that. The thought of getting all hairy just grosses me out. Seeing how the older guys on the football team are developing and how they act, I just can’t let that happen to me.

It’s better this way. You’ll be happier without me. By the time you find this note I’ll be dead. Just to let you know, I’ll be wearing a nightgown. I want to die as the girl I am. You can bury me as you want, but at least I’ll end my miserable life as a girl.

Kyle will know where to find my body. Tell him I went to our special place to die. Please be nice to Kyle. He’s been the only friend I’ve ever had and is the reason I’ve lasted as long as I did. Tell him I want to thank him for everything he’s done for me.

Please don’t be too upset with me. I really don’t want to hurt you, but I just can’t handle being a boy anymore. Please enjoy the rest of your lives.

I love you

Your hidden daughter,

Alexis

 
Sally was escorted to the treatment room and shown in. Bursting into tears upon seeing him she rushed to Alex and hugged him. “Alex, it’ll be alright. Everything will be okay. We’ll get the best doctors to help you be a boy. We’ll....”

“NOOOOO,” screamed Lexi as she began to thrash and struggle against the restraining straps. “Get away from me! Alex is dead! I’m Lexi and I’m a girl! If you try to make me be a boy I’ll... I’ll keep trying to kill myself until I succeed!”

Sally pulled back from Alex with a look of confusion, horror and shock upon her face.

A nurse stepped up and moved Sally to a corner of the room. “Give the child some space. Now is not the time to have that discussion.”

Kyle, who had stepped away for the gurney when Sally entered quickly stepped back and laid a comforting hand on his best friend. “Relax, Lexi, things will work out. I’ve still got your back. I’ll help your parents understand that you’re a girl.”

Lexi promptly settled down as she grasped Kyle’s hand. A look of forlorn hope was in her eyes as she looked up at her hero. Loopy from the meds she smiled timidly. “Thank you, sir knight. Once more you’ve rescued this fair maiden.”

Sally was gobsmacked as she witnessed the interaction between the two. They seemed to be a boyfriend/girlfriend... with Alex as the girl! Disconcerted by the observation, she knew their past relationship, while close, had never crossed the line of simple friendship. Looking at Alex as he desperately and hopefully clutched Kyle’s hand, for the first time she saw her child, although physically a boy, was indeed a girl.

“Lexi,” Sally timidly spoke as she used the girls name she’d heard Kyle use. “Please forgive me for upsetting you. I was just so glad to see you I forgot... that you think you’re a girl.”

Lexi started to get worked up but Kyle spoke first as he soothed Lexi. “Lexi, it’ll be okay. At least she’s trying. Just remember, everyone has known you as Alex. This is the first time any of us knew that Alex was a mask you wore to hide Lexi. In my heart I accept you as Lexi but my mind has known you as Alex. I’m probably going to mess up and call you Alex at some point, but I know you’re Lexi. It’ll take us a while to get it straight. Try to give us a bit of slack.”

“Kyle is right, Lexi,” Sally declared hopefully as she slowly approached her child. “You are my child and I’ll always love you. Please understand it’ll take me a bit to completely accept Lexi... but I promise to do my best for my daughter.”

As she said the word ‘daughter’ she placed her hand on Lexi’s hand. Lexi responded with a hopeful tentative smile. “Mom... mommy... how will dad react to me... Lexi?”

“Your dad loves you, but it won’t be easy for him to accept you’re not his son,” Sally sighed then drew herself up like a mother bear defending her cub. “But rest assured, I’ll stand by my daughter. If it comes down to it, I’ll divorce him rather than ever risk losing you again. Lexi... I love you!”

As the mother and daughter hugged and cried. Kyle smiled. “I’ll give you some time to bond. I’ll see if I can talk to your dad.”

“Kyle, thanks for saving Lexi,” Sally gratefully smiled.

Then she looked at the nurse. “Could you please show Kyle to the reception desk? I’m sure my husband is still there.”

The nurse nodded and began to guide Kyle to reception.

“I hope you can help Barry accept Lexi.,” Sally added as the boy left the room.

“I’ll do my best,” Kyle smiled before he exited the room.

Barry was just finishing up at the reception desk when Kyle emerged from the treatment area. The only good thing about the seemingly endless paperwork was that, bizarrely it kept his mind off Alex. Seeing Kyle brought the distraction to an end. “Kyle... how did you know?”

“You knew Alex was upset after practice,” Kyle began. “A lot more upset than normal. The last thing he said to me bothered me all evening and when I went to bed I couldn’t get to sleep. Then it hit me... he was saying goodbye! I jumped out of bed, got dressed and headed out to Burnside Lake.”

“Burnside Lake?” A clearly confused Barry asked. “Why there?”

“We found a special place out there,” Kyle answered. “It’s where we went to get away from everything. I just knew if he was going to kill himself, he’d do it there. I was right.”

“Thank God,” Barry declared as he struggled not to choke up. “Was Alex... wearing a n... nightgown?”

“NO!” Kyle stated firmly almost fiercely. “Alex wasn’t there. None of us ever understood Alex never really existed. I found Lexi. SHE was wearing a nightie. SHE wanted to die as HER real self. I found HER and saved HER.”

“She... her... my son thinks he’s a girl,” Barry shook his head as he tried to make sense of his child’s gender identity. Barry had always assumed all the transgendered crap was just a bunch of gay bullshit so it was difficult for him to get past his prejudice.

“I was there. I saw the emotional suicidal mess. The sooner you realize your son never really existed, the sooner you can finally be a family,” Kyle calmly answered. “I didn’t know until I found Lexi but now that I do. It certainly explains a lot of her past actions. She was a girl doing a bad job of pretending to be a boy.”

As Barry tried to wrap his mind about that Kyle continued. “I mean no disrespect but what’s even worse was you kept pushing her to ‘man up’. She was terrified how you’d react if you ever found out the truth. So terrified she thought her only option was to end her life. She almost succeeded! I saved her... now it’s up to you to help keep her alive. You have a choice. Do want a live daughter or a dead child?”

Just then Kyle’s parents rushed into the emergency waiting area. Seeing Kyle they rushed over. Quietly, Kyle revealed all that had occurred.

Barry watched as they swarmed the boy. His soul ached. Kyle’s last question tore him apart. “Do you want a live daughter or a dead child?” What had he done to his child? How could he have been so blind as to not see the Alex’s suffering? Yes, he had pushed incessantly to make the boy ‘man up’. Yet Alex’s past behavior did make sense if he was a girl... but he wasn’t a girl... he was a boy. But what good would it do to insist Alex was a boy if he killed himself? Barry was totally confused and becoming increasingly distraught.

Their reunion done, the Deacon family joined Barry as he stood thinking about his progeny. After exchanging greetings, the adults simply exchanged looks of uncertainty. They had no idea what to say or even what to think about Alex’s declaration he was a girl.

“I met Lexi tonight,” Kyle finally spoke up. “There is no doubt in my mind she IS a girl. Think for a moment. Lexi has always been a girl but she was forced to masquerade as a boy. Everything Alex ever did made him seem like a wimpy sissy. But since it was really Lexi doing those things, her actions make perfect sense.”

“They do,” Barry wearily sighed. “But damn it, Alex is a boy not a girl!”

“I’ve read a bit about transsexuals,” Jill stated. “Physically they’re one gender, but mentally they’re the other. Brain scans have shown that the wiring of male minds is different from female minds. The brains of transsexuals are wired opposite their physical gender. They have no choice but to feel they’re trapped in the wrong body... it’s simply the way they’re made. Barry, Alex tried to kill himself because he’s a transsexual, you have two choices. If you continue to force him to be a guy, he’ll either succeed in killing himself or when he’s of age he’ll leave and never return. You’ll lose him either way. Accept Lexi as your daughter, let her be the girl she truly is, love her as your child, and you’ll never lose her. Which is the better choice... to lose or keep your child?”

Barry hung his head. “I don’t want to lose him... her. But how can I do it? Every time I see HER I’ll see HIM. I’ll screw up and drive her away.”

“If you truly love her she’ll forgive your mistakes,” Kyle declared.

“How can you be so sure?” Barry asked with genuine hope.

“Because I’ll be with her to keep her calm,” Kyle firmly stated with utter conviction. “Mr. Hanford, dad, do you remember when Alex and I first met?”

“Yeah,” Barry frowned. “You were three and it was the first day of kiddie soccer. You pissed on Alex.”

“That’s right, but none of you ever realized WHY I did it,” Kyle chuckled. “I didn’t want to be there and Alex was clearly terrified. The ball rolled up to him and he just stood there looking down at it while you yelled at him to kick the ball. Another kid ran in knocking Alex over and ran off with the ball. Alex laid there crying while you yelled at him to get up. What you didn’t know was that he was so upset he’d pissed himself. I saw the wet spot growing. I knew he’d really get yelled at when you saw that. I don’t know why but I desperately wanted to help him. I did the only thing I could think of. I went to him and added my piss to his so no one would ever know he’d wet himself.”

“My lord,” Jill gasped. “I always wondered why did that! You never gave us a reason. You had me worried for a long time that there was something wrong with you.”

Barry and Keith both unsuccessfully tried to stifle their chuckles but when they saw the other trying they broke into guffaws. Jill and Kyle quickly joined the hilarity that had everyone in the area looking at them.

“Alex and I were meant to meet and become best friends,” Kyle solemnly declared when the laughter finally subsided. “I finally understand why. When she was pretending to be Alex it never occurred to me. Now that I know she’s Lexi, I know she’s not only my best friend, she’s my GIRLFRIEND!”

That declaration left the three adults speechless.

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The next days were hectic. As a suicide, Lexi had to see a psychiatrist and convince her that she was past her suicidal stage. The psychiatrist called in a gender specialist who provided a temporary diagnosis of gender dysphoria and prescribed testosterone suppressing medication pending continued weekly counseling.

With the aid of a laptop, Lexi and her mom did a bit of on line fashion browsing as they did their best to figure out Lexi’s style. Pink and lime green were her favorite colors and while she liked girly girl fashions she was wise enough to know her basic wardrobe would need to be age appropriate. After making a few basic selections and armed with Lexi’s measurements to determine proper sizes, Sally purchased two mid thigh length nightgowns with shortie robes and matching slippers. A pink T shirt with a butterfly applique and mid rise skinny jeans with butterflies embroidered on the back pockets as well as Puma Vikky Animal sneakers in a color they called Dubarry (they looked pink to Lexi) completed her going home outfit.

Lexi was allowed to go home Sunday morning, her suicide attempt having occurred Wednesday night into Thursday morning. Once she knew her parents accepted her, Lexi blossomed. With each passing day her parents saw less of the heretofore quiet, repressed sad person their son had been as the long repressed giggly perky girl emerged and asserted herself. Barry was totally blown away by the love her felt for his daughter. Her deportment and gestures were so naturally feminine that even Barry realized Alex’s clumsy behavior as a boy had been an act, one of poor quality.

At the urging of Jill and Keith, Barry and Sally contacted Gary Hassman, a local lawyer who successfully accepted LGBTQ clients. Both families signed on since they knew if anything happened, Kyle would be at Lexi’s side. Gary explained their rights and the laws in place to protect transgendered.

Kyle spent the last days of summer at the Hanford home. Now that she could let her true self out of hiding, Lexi realized that she wanted to be Kyle’s girlfriend. Both sets of parents could see the love the preteens shared. During the two weeks between her discharge and the start of the new school year Sally and Jill took Lexi shopping for her new wardrobe. Kyle accompanied them, proud that Lexi considered his opinion of her selections to be important. While they bought a few skirts and a couple of dresses, her basic wardrobe was jeans and tops. Kyle headed for another area whenever they headed into a lingerie department. While they were out and about, Lexi had her ears double pierced and had her longish hair trimmed into a cute girly pixie cut. Lexi appeared and behaved as a cute preteen girl without the slightest trace of boy being evident.

Two more visits to the gender specialist further cemented the initial GID diagnosis. With Lexi finally freed from her restraints there simply was no way Alex could ever even momentarily return. It would be Lexi starting the school year when it began.

The psychiatrist, the Handfords and the Deacon's main concern was how Lexi would be received once the school year began. Sally and Barry along with their lawyer, made an appointment to see the principal, the head guidance counselor, the district superintendent, and the schools solicitor to present the psychiatrist’s documentation that Lexi was transgendered and had begun her RLT.

The meeting was a bit stilted since the school district had never had a student change gender roles. They were aware of the federal and state laws forbidding discrimination and the district had a policy on the books so there was never a question of Lexi starting the sixth grade. Instead the meeting reviewed the special accommodations that Lexi needed. These included using the handicap restrooms and using the infirmary to change for Pys-ed and shower afterward. It was agreed Lexi and Kyle would have the same schedule and that their class would be made up of students who never had contact with Alex. The middle school absorbed the incoming sixth graders from three elementary schools, each of which had four classes per grade level averaging twenty five students per class. Thus there were three hundred incoming sixth graders of whom a hundred had been in elementary school with Alex and Kyle. Since there would be twelve sixth grade classes averaging twenty five students, it wasn’t difficult to rearrange class assignments to keep those who knew Alex out of Lexi’s classes.

During the teacher and staff orientation prior to the start of the new term they were notified that a sixth grade MTF transgender student was enrolled. They were informed the state and district policy mandated a zero toleration policy concerning bullying by students or staff and that it would be strictly enforced. Most of the staff was supportive although concerned about how to determine hidden bullying amongst the students. The few who were upset by having a transgender student knew better than to voice their opinion.

By the first day of school the rumor mill about a transgendered student amongst them was going full tilt through the student body. Most were eagerly looking for a guy in drag. With Kyle by her side, Lexi made a low profile entrance. They heard a lot of discussion about the topic. Most of it was curiosity, many had a what ever floats your boat attitude although a handful were quite derogatory.

In homeroom the teacher took role and reviewed the basic school rules for the incoming sixth graders. Since it was their first day in middle school all the students were nervous which allowed Lexi to stay off their radar. The fact no one in the room except Kyle knew Lexi eliminated fear of immediate recognition of her past identity. The girls noticed that Lexi and Kyle seemed to be a couple. That meant Lexi wouldn’t be competing with them for the remaining boys but several were a bit frustrated since Kyle was physically attractive and his actions toward Lexi bespoke a maturity many guys never achieved.

The first week went smoothly. Kyle and Lexi became acquainted with their classmates in a friendly and open manner. Since they were not close friends with their classmates, no one thought anything was unusual during lunch when Lexi and Kyle quietly sat by themselves near the cafeteria proctor, a place few voluntarily sat. There were three ugly incidents where genetic girls who would never win a beauty contest had been accused of being the mysterious transgender. Two boys and five girls received after school detention because of their hurtful actions. Lexi and Kyle were happy the vast majority of students were upset by the false accusations. No one could figure out who the transgendered girl might be. Many students began to question if a transgendered student really was attending their school.

On Monday of the second week of school an assembly was held. The gender identity psychiatrist treating Lexi gave a presentation that explained the agony transgender people endure because their brains are the opposite gender of their bodies. She presented medical evidence in the form of brain scans that reveal the difference between male and female brains. She also explained it was impossible to change the brain’s gender while it was possible to change the body’s gender.

The principal then addressed the students informing them of state laws and school district policy with regard to sexual discrimination and harassment. The zero toleration of bullying was also reviewed. Violations of the laws and policy would yield prompt and harsh actions as deterrents.

The students and staff left the assembly with a lot to think about. Many who had felt negatively about transgender realized they might be wrong. Those who had supported the transgendered felt vindicated. However, the bigoted haters simply took the information presented as propaganda to be snidely dismissed.

That afternoon Lexi had her first phys-ed class where they had to be in their gym outfits. While she appeared like the other girls she was nervous since she’d had to change in the nurse’s office. The class headed outside to learn the basics of field hockey. Like the other girls Lexi followed the teacher’s instructions. Her dislike of sports was shared by about a quarter of the class so her half hearted effort didn’t seem out of place. Since it was her last class of the day it wasn’t difficult to slip away from her classmates. As they headed into the locker room her classmates went to their lockers as Lexi simply passed through heading to the nearby nurses office.

It was wasn’t until mid-week that two girls in their homeroom noticed Lexi was changing for phys-ed in the nurses office rather than join the rest of the girls in their class. Knowing what had happened to those who had made false accusations as to the identity of the transgender student, the kept quiet but also watched Lexi closely. They soon noticed she was using the handicap restrooms instead of the regular girls facilities. The only thing that held them back from revealing their suspicions was that Lexi and Kyle were definitely boyfriend/girlfriend and had been since the start of school.

After watching Lexi and Kyle for a full week, the girls believed Lexi had to be the mysterious transgendered student. During lunch they brought their trays to the table where Lexi and Kyle sat. Smiling they sat beside the pair and made small talk for the first half of the lunch break.

“Lexi, Karen and I noticed you use the handicap restrooms and change for phys-ed in the nurse’s office,” Ginny explained. “The only logical reason is that you can’t use the regular girls facilities.”

Lexi sucked in her breath, paled and looked at Kyle silently begging him to help. Kyle reached across the table and placed his hand atop Lexi’s trembling hand as the two girls watched the pair.

“We think you’re the transgendered student,” Karen burst out after the awkward silence stretched on for nearly two minutes.

Half the students in the cafeteria heard Karen’s excited accusation and turned to look in her direction. They saw two girls expectantly watching Lexi who was pale and trembling. It looked like the accusation was correct. Excited whispering about the unveiling of the transgender student quickly grew to outright shouts as the revelation spread throughout the lunchroom until everyone was looking at Lexi. The proctor tried to calm the growing situation with little success.

Lexi shook with anxiety as tears began to run down her cheeks. Kyle stood and quickly moved around the table to wrap Lexi in a protective hug. Those actions confirmed in the students minds that Lexi was the transgendered student. Agitated comments swirled amongst the students.

“SHIT,” Jeff Wiggins, the eighth grade quarterback, exclaimed as he recognized Kyle from the brief time Kyle and Alex had been at football tryouts. A closer look at Lexi revealed she bore a striking resemblance to Alex. Rising to his feet he pointed and spoke loudly. “THAT’S PAPER SO SHE MUST BE TOILET!”

The rest of the guys on the football team quickly voiced their recognition accompanied by jeers and harsh laughter. The situation rapidly deteriorated. “I KNEW THEY WERE FAGGOTS!” “GOD DAMN QUEERS!” Many other nasty comments flew across the lunchroom. Crowd mentality took over as quite a few others, mostly boys but a handful of girls as well, quickly joined the jocks in dishing out verbal abuse. Many of those bullying Lexi stood, posturing as they vied to outdo each other in dissing Lexi. Led by Jeff, they menacingly began moving towards her.

Miss Baver, the cafeteria proctor realized she’d lost control of the students. “That’s enough!” she scolded. “Everyone sit down and be quiet!” But it was too late for her to stop the mob. As the proctor tried to settle the agitated students she pulled the walkie talkie clipped to her waist to call the vice principal. In a few terse words she explained the situation.

The vice principal dropped what he was doing and went to the room housing the monitors and recording equipment for the school security surveillance system. A quick look at the video feed from the cafeteria was all he needed. Just before he left the office he told the office secretary to contact the principal, the school nurse and the head guidance counselor to send them to the cafeteria STAT. Then he took off down the halls.

By then Lexi was in tears. Seeing the approaching angry mob Kyle stepped around the table, like a brave knight facing a menacing dragon, to stand between Lexi and the approaching taunting bigots. Realizing they’d unwittingly opened Pandora’s box, Ginny and Karen moved to either side of Lexi and protectively hugged her while they tearfully apologized.

As the jeering cacophony increased and Jeff led his followers towards Lexi, a few girls, disgusted at their hostile boorish behavior, stood and began yelling in defense of Lexi. Quite a few rose and scurried to join Ginny and Karen in comforting Lexi. With the table forming a barrier between them and the advancing nasty guys they glared at the crude boys. Seeing the angry expressions on the faces of the girls the quite a few of coarse guys stopped advancing and the volume of their jeering decreased. Upon seeing some of the obnoxious guys momentarily stymied, other girls who were disgusted with the normal repugnant antics of the guys quickly joined the other girls in verbally defending Lexi. Seeing the girls facing down the bullying boys, more girls and a few of the braver nerds and geek boys, joined those defending Lexi in opposing the jeering guys. However the girls didn’t slow Jeff or his neanderthal like teammates from advancing.

Without showing fear Kyle unflinchingly stood his ground. “Back off Jeff,” he boldly declared. “Lexi has medical and legal permission to be the girl she is inside.”

“That’s nothing put bullshit, fag,” Jeff snarled. “I figured the two of you were fags when you showed up for football practice! We should have beat the shit out of you then! But we’ll sure as hell do it now!” With that he hauled of and sucker punched Kyle in the face.

Girls throughout the cafeteria screamed at the wanton violence.

Kyle was knocked back into the table as blood gushed from his nose and split lip. Dazed but determined, Kyle shook off the blow and forced himself back to his feet. With slurred speech and blood splattering Kyle calmly spoke. “Do you feel better now?”

It had taken the Vice Principal a bit under two minutes to reach the cafeteria. He entered the door just in time to hear Jeff mouth off about beating fags and see him throw the punch. Swearing silently under his breath he dashed over to the bloody scene just as Kyle rose and spoke.

Jeff was momentarily flummoxed by Kyle’s calm action and retort.

“THAT”S ENOUGH!” The Vice Principal shouted as he pulled Jeff away from Kyle. “You are in a pile of deep trouble, young man!”

With the forceful appearance of the Vice Principal the situation almost instantly defused. The cacophony died down as the belligerents recognized the vice principal. The man had a reputation for crushing rebelliousness and his dark visage let the guys doing the bullying knew they’d been caught red handed.

“I want everyone who was abusing Lexi and Kyle,” the Vice Principal tersely ordered as he pointed to the massed boys and few girls. “To line up in single file along that wall. NOW!” The entire time he kept a firm hand on Jeff’s shoulder.

Like scolded dogs with their tail tucked between their legs the miscreants silently shuffled to the wall. The girls surrounding Lexi relaxed with quite a few smirking knowing the boys were in hot water. The Vice Principal stalked towards the bullies as the councilor, nurse and principal, who had both taken a peek at the video feed, arrived. The proctor pointed towards Lexi still hidden by the human wall. The councilor headed to the sobbing girl and the nurse to Kyle who by then was swaying a bit. She promptly helped him sit at the table as she began to triage his injuries.

The division of the students showed sixty percent stood supporting Lexi. Twenty five percent had been jeering, harassing and posturing. The remaining fifteen percent, unsure of what, to do slunk down in their seats just wanting to avoid any conflict.

The proctor explained the situation to the principal who sighed heavily. Then he headed to the girls supporting Lexi. “I want to thank you for supporting a fellow student. You did the right thing. What I need from you at this point is written statements briefly describing what happened. I’d like at least eight signed written statements and more than one person can sign a statement. Having the statements will make it easier to discipline those who were bullying. If you’re willing to assist in this, please do so now and give your statements to Miss Baver.

Meanwhile the Vice Principal was calling off names that Miss Baver dutifully recorded. When he finished he looked at them. “Each and every one of you is a disgrace to this school. What you’ve done is outright bullying. You were informed that a transgender student was enrolled and told there would be a zero tolerance of bullying. Until further notice, you’re all on a minimum of two weeks after school detention.”

That elicited moans from the reprobates with hateful glares directed toward Lexi and Kyle.

“Depending on what our investigation reveals, some of you will receive further discipline. Let me spell out what this means. Those of you on the football, soccer, and cross country teams will be dropped from the roster for missing consecutive practices. In effect, those three sports are now over for the season since there will not be enough, if any, players to field a squad.”

The moaning grew and several became surly. Even though the Vice Principal still firmly gripped his shoulder Jeff cockily sneered, “You can’t do that! You can’t shut down the sports programs over a couple of freaking faggots!” Quite a few boys nodded their agreement and numerous “Yeah’s” were heard.

“Well, Mister Wiggins,” the principal declared as he walked up to stand beside the VP. “You and those who support you have just upped the group detention to FOUR weeks! In addition, your obvious hatred of transsexuals is clearly a HATE CRIME and a clear violation of Pennsylvania laws which clearly state harassment based on sexual orientation and gender identity constitutes a hate crime. I am by state law required to notify the police and district attorney to start a civil rights violation criminal investigation. I strongly suggest the you keep your mouths shut! Furthermore, I will be sending out notifications to the PIAA that Southern Middle School will be forfeiting the remainder of our fall boys sporting schedule.”

The boys were clearly shocked. Quite a few were angry but wisely kept quiet.

“We will be calling your parents to explain the seriousness of what happened,” the principal continued. “If any of you decide to seek revenge against our transgendered student, even if it is making derogatory comments, you will be promptly suspended pending expulsion. State law REQUIRES schools to ensure the safety of it’s students. Your actions today have threatened a fellow student. If we do not take prompt and harsh actions to stop the harassment, the school can be held liable and sued. YOU are the ones who have pushed things to this state so you only have yourselves to blame.”

“You can’t prove any of the stuff you say we did,” Jeff snarled. “Sticking up for a fucking faggot that should be put down for being an insult to masculinity. Our parents will take this to the school board and we’ll have your freaking job and that damned sissy will be run out of town!”

Again several others joined in agreeing with Jeff.

“I have a difficult time believing you boys are so ignorant,” the principal shook his head. “Just look at the ceiling in the corners. You’ll see the FOUR security cameras that have been recording EVERYTHING that has happened. Mr. Wiggins, you’ll be coming with me to the office so I can turn you over to the police. I’ll be calling your parents to let them know your are suspended pending expulsion for you words and actions. Now, the rest of you, return to your seats and clean up your meals. Lunch will be over in two minutes.”

Mumbling, the boys did as they were told. Most had been intimidated by the harsh words and punishment. A few burned with the desire to get back at Lexi.

The principal told the Vice Principal to keep Jeff Wiggins under control as he headed over to apologize to Lexi and check on Kyle. Then he collected a very defiant Mr. Wiggins as he told The Vice Principal to shadow Lexi between classes for the rest of the day.

The councilor had calmed Lexi enough to control her tears. It was only then she realized Kyle had been bloodied. “Oh my God, Kyle!” She exclaimed as she shrugged away from the councilor to get to Kyle.

“I’ll be okay, Lexi,” Kyle reassured her as she tearfully took his hand. “What’s important is that it’s MY blood, not yours!”

The girls still surrounding Lexi and Kyle almost swooned at his gallantry. They had witnessed the event and knew Kyle was not boasting but being utterly sincere.

The other students had silently listened as the principal read the riot act to the haters. None of them had fully comprehended the seriousness of the actions against Lexi and Kyle. That the boys sports were to be forfeited drove home the dire situation since they all knew sports was an integral of the school and community.

The nurse insisted Kyle be taken to the hospital since she was sure he needed stitches to close the wound in his lips where several teeth had been forced through the flesh. In addition, she was sure he had a concussion. An ambulance was summoned as calls were placed to the Hanford's and Deacons. Jill and Sally agreed that it’d be best if the distraught Lexi was allowed to accompany Kyle as they would meet them at the hospital. Barry and Keith would come to the school.

The principal called the police and the district attorney to tell them of the hate crimes and ask for prompt action. Then he called the parents of Jeff Wiggins. When Barry and Keith arrived, without mentioning the names of the miscreants he explained the actions he’d taken. In turn they explained their lawyer would be joining them in a few minutes. Attorney Hassman arrived ready for bear.

The police arrived in fifteen minutes and within a half hour of the call a county detective and an assistant District Attorney arrived. The school administration affirmed their full cooperation as the superintendent and the solicitor arrived.

When Jeff’s parents arrived they saw the smirk on Jeff’s face as he sat in a chair to the side of the office. Before they could speak to their boy he principal and the district superintendent with curt formality greeted them. With the heavyweight welcoming committee they realized the situation was dire. They were shown to the conference room and introduced to the school solicitor, Attorney Hassman, the county detective, the assistant District Attorney, the police officer, Mr. Deacon and Mr. Hanford. All four views of the security camera video of the events in the cafeteria were shown so there was no doubt what had occurred. It was clear that Jeff had stepped way over the line.

Mr. Hanford and Mr. Deacon's were clearly furious but held a tight lipped silence. Attorney Hassman waited patiently giving the school a chance to handle the matter. The Mr. and Mrs. Wiggins were clearly embarrassed and humiliated by their son’s behavior. They didn’t like the fact a transgender student was in the school but they knew the laws. There was nothing to be done to prevent such an enrollment. They silently accepted Jeff’s suspension pending expulsion review. They were furious with Jeff because they knew the case against their son was rock solid and there was a very real chance he’d face criminal charges.

The smug expression on Jeff’s face disappeared when he saw the fierce expressions directed at him by his parents as they exited the conference room. Without a word they collected their boy and left. Wisely, Jeff kept silent.

Attorney Hassman told the administration he was satisfied the school’s prompt action but would be keeping a close eye on the situation to assure they followed through. Barry and Keith agreed.

At the hospital emergency Sally and Jill kept an eye on Lexi as she kept bursting into tears not only out of concern for Kyle but also for what returning to school would hold. Kyle stoically accepted the stitches and gave Lexi a loop sided smile. He had a concussion and a growing shiner but the hospital deemed he could go home. School was still in session when they left. Having received text messages the men were in meetings they decided to return to the school to relieve Lexi’s fear that she would be expelled for causing the mess.

As they arrived in the office parking they saw an extremely forlorn Jeff being firmly escorted out of the building by his parents. They waited until they saw the boy being thrust into the back seat of a Hummer. It was only when the Hummer backed out of it’s space and pulled out with spinning tires that they exited their car. Kyle slipped his arm into Lexi’s and boldly escorted her into the building as the smiling mother’s followed. They entered the office just as the the others exited the conference room.

Lexi held her fearfully drew in her breathe. When she saw her dad’s smile she knew she was not in hot water. Kyle was a bit confused as his girlfriend began to cry. Both fathers promptly and proudly hugged their children.

After the principal assured Lexi she and Kyle were not in any type of trouble they all returned to the conference room where Lexi and Alex made their statements. Permission slips were signed to allow the hospital to release the records of Kyle’s injuries and treatments.

With the involvement of the police and the detective and the District Attorney as well as the ambulance dispatched to the school, the confrontation came to the attention of the news media. To head off rumors, at Attorney Hassman’s suggestion, a brief news conference was called involving himself, the District Attorney, and the school superintendent and solicitor. It was held in time for the 5:30pm local news.

They explained that due to the rapid response of the school authorities the bullying confrontation was shut down with only one bit of violence. However, serious threats against a transgendered student had been made and the matter was being investigated as a hate crime. Without revealing names the students, nearly all boys, who instigated the confrontation it was released they had received four weeks of after school detention while the student who resorted to physical violence was facing much harsher consequences. The consequences of the four weeks of detention meant those who played sports would lose their positions on their sports teams for non attendance of practice and games. In turn, that meant all the male fall sports teams no longer had enough members to field a squad thus they would forfeit the remainder of their games. The District Attorney reminded the media that all the students involved were underage and any violation of their right to privacy would be prosecuted.

Of course, the students in the cafeteria told their parents and within the school district the grapevine flourished. The District Attorney had placed a tap on the Hanford phone and Sally and Barry were told to keep any abusive and threatening callers on the phone for at least a minute to enable traces. The Hanford's received numerous calls that evening, many simply wanted to verify that Lexi was transgendered. About a third were neutral about the revelation. Much to their surprise about a third were supportive. However another third expressed their negative feelings. Of those about five percent here openly hostile and threatening. The District Attorney was able to record those calls and the source. Before the evening was over police began visiting homes to arrest those who threatened violence.

The school administration was doing all it could to shut down further confrontations. One thing that puzzled them was why Jeff had identified Kyle as ‘paper’ and Lexi as ‘toilet’. It didn’t take them long to discover the derogatory nicknames came from the coach of the football team. The coach, a phys-ed teacher, was promptly suspended with intent to terminate.

The next morning, Lexi fearfully clung to Kyle’s arm as they entered the school. Everyone gaped at Kyle’s purple face and the black threads stitching his lip. No one really knew who started it, but the students began raising their right fist in the air smiling in clear solidarity with Lexi and her boyfriend. There were still haters, but they kept their views unspoken with only a few muted glares since a solid majority of the students had Lexi’s back. In homeroom, their classmates stood and applauded the duo.

Kyle was once more mystified by Lexi’s tears. Despite loving his girlfriend, he simply didn’t understand why girls cried when they were happy
 

End

 

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Comments

Thank you,

A great story and well told,unfortunately so true for people like us------there is always some animal with no brains and no understanding ,mainly because they don't understand and don't want to.

ALISON

Lucky!

Hypatia Littlewings's picture

Lexi is very lucky to have Kyle.

Gee, I was made to play a couple of seasons of Little League (do they still call it that?) Baseball. :(

Good Story, I likes!
~Hypatia >i< ..:::

little league

yea, and there are quite a few GIS girls on teams which do pretty well. But, there are just some that are not sports minded of either as well as some that are. Again, we adults are sitting here trying to throw stereotype labels around like confetti. let the child be whom they are not what we want them to be.
those interested I'm gettin to be an old dinosaur. who will never see my true self except glimpses. BUT like the OLD IBM Mainframe computers I worked with most of my adult lfe. Ive lived and seen, and shared when I believed it would do any good. Jack

super sweet ending!

I'm tearing up now ....

DogSig.png

Great story

I loved the story. Very well told . Kudos to you.

There is a lot left to continue the story too.

Joanna

true friend ship

It's said you only have five true friends that will stick by you for life.

Just like with Kyle and Alex/Lexi but that is what I'd call true love.

And that shows you a boy can have a girl as a best friend.

Because I do and I've loved her from the day I met her. Witch reminds me she also kissed me that day over 28 years ago.

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Read again

Podracer's picture

T'was good to revisit this story. Have courage, kids.

"Reach for the sun."

Although I understand team

Although I understand team sports as ONE of the ways to teach team efforts to children, I also know that many times it is the wrong way to do so.
Not every child is interested in sports, any more than every child is interested in hunting, fishing, or other things that people try to do. Just because a girl is not interested in sewing or crochet or whatever is considered "girl things", does not make her any less feminine.
If a girl or woman is sports minded and loves that "line of work" or she loves sports in general, more power to her.
The same applies to boys or men, if they are more adept or focused on what might be considered "female things".
I know of no-one who ever made fun of Rosie Greer for his crocheting and knitting skills any more than they did of Lynn Swan for his dancing skills. Both these men were MAJOR football players. One used his skills to "center" and calm himself after games; while the other used his ballet dancing skills, which he translated to the playing field, that kept him from being tackled a lot when he had the ball and was running.

Best Friends...

forever speaks to fears and feelings often out of sight. It speaks to the power of friendship to make things possible. This story does us the favor of not arriving where we want it, but where it is! Wonderfully told, I agree with one comment that Allison should continue writing and that it become a novel.
This story has the power to speak to so many. Some it could be a story saying they're not alone. First responders, medics, etc could testify many meet more tragic outcomes. Parents and others simply how little they understand. So many who won't take the time and effort to accept one another.
Jennifer Sue, you have experienced much and did so well to humanize this story to us.

Hugs of love,
Jessie C

Jessica E. Connors

Jessica Connors

This was just...wow. A great

This was just...wow. A great read and one that stands the test of time. It's a retro classic and one that deserves to be reread!

I'm told STFU more times in a day than most people get told in a lifetime

Sweet but poignant

Jamie Lee's picture

No parent should force their child to participate in any activity. They should encourage participation, let their child try activities they want, but never use force.

Both dads were guilty of trying to relive their youth through Alex and Kyle. Both were guilty of not being sensitive enough to their children's needs, desires, and ability. And for not having the kind of relationship with their sons that would have let their sons' talk openly with them. Hence Alex's suicide attempt, not knowing what else to do.

Kyle was the life saver throughout this entire story. Peeing on Alex so no one would know he peed his pants--Kyle taking the heat. Being there the entire time in school during practice. Then standing up to Jeff after the two girls unknowingly started a problem with the bullies by revealing Lexi being the transgendered student. And Kyle was the one who asked Lexi's dad if he wanted a dead son or live daughter. Kyle's actions throughout this story are not typical for a boy his age. But actions of a boy much older and much much more mature.

A very poignant, but sweet, story that might require a box of tissues during reading.

Others have feelings too.