Better Than The Alternative? : Chapter 9

Jordan had been given a second chance to live after overcoming a very unique medical condition. While the procedure saves his life, the side effects that he faces are the last things a 14 year old boy would want. Convinced with what he knows lies ahead, is it better than the alternative?

Better Than The Alternative?
Chapter 9

By Rebecca Jane
Copyright© 2018 Rebecca Jane
All Rights Reserved.

Author's Note:Apologies for taking a bit longer on this one. It encompassed a lot more, and at the same time I wasn't able to get as far as I wanted. That and I also had a senior and junior in high school with finals this last week... It's been a bit hectic, but then again that's pretty much my life anyway... Warning, there is an altercation in this one, so small bit of bit of violence with some heated language... Hope you enjoy {hugs}-~Rebecca

Chapter 9


I spent most of Sunday alone in thought. Sam and her parents had always been fairly religious and Sunday they spent most of the day at their church. My parents and I used to regularly attend church before my health started going downhill. Of course, I quit going, especially when I got too sick to go. With how the doctors found the cause of my problems and the ‘cure’, my parents considered it a miracle and they have returned to church with a renewed sense of purpose. I couldn’t, I couldn’t bring myself to think of it as a miracle, it certainly didn’t feel like a miracle to me… My ‘cure’ seemed to me like just another challenge, or test… I felt that I had been tested enough… The treatment that saved me, wasn’t a miracle… It was just another challenge for me to endure… I was tired of simply enduring… At least they didn’t force me to go with them, even though they did ask. Getting me back into the church was going to probably take another miracle, maybe they knew better than hoping for two to happen in the same year… They left after breakfast and I returned to my room in an attempt to catch up on some reading assignments, but that only let my mind wander and think some more…

I remembered how I had thought about the trust that Sam and I shared on the softball field, except our trust wasn’t just on the field. With the way I trusted her, I knew I could tell her what was going on with means that she would be okay with it. I knew that she wouldn’t turn her back on me, and I knew that she would be there for me. I wanted to tell her, I really did. Every time I tried to think of a way to actually say it though, my stomach would start knotting up in fear. The thing was, I didn’t know why I was afraid. I knew, or least was pretty sure, that she was into me more than just a friend, and I also knew I was falling hard for her… That’s why I had to tell her, even though in doing so would change the way things were going. I had already convinced myself that we could only be friends, and I was mostly okay with that. I was still afraid though…

The fear is what was bothering me the most… I guess most people learn to deal with it, and even overcome their fears, they have to. I didn’t know how to overcome what I was feeling. I honestly never remembered feeling afraid before, which most people would probably call bullshit on, but I’m serious. I had never felt afraid of anything before in my life. Even lying on my deathbed and knowing I probably wasn’t going to survive, I was never afraid. When my friends would say that I was crazy for standing up to bullies twice my size, the truth was I stood up to them because I was never afraid of them in the first place. That’s why I was so confused as to why I was afraid of telling Sam, or basically anyone, the whole truth about me. I wasn’t afraid of what was happening to me, even though it was difficult at first, I had accepted that. That didn’t mean I wanted it to happen though. The thought of saying it to someone would first make my stomach cramp, then my heart would race, and then it would get hard to breathe… It was crippling… Finally, I decided that I actually wanted to talk to Dr. Byrnes about something, no more like I needed to talk to him about this. Maybe he had learned some Jedi mind trick when he got his PHD that could help me get over this. I thought I could make it okay for the next two weeks until our session, so that’s what I decided to do. I didn’t think this declared an emergency visit, so I would do my best to not lead Sam on in any way. I was just going to be her friend… That should be easy, right?

The next week was mostly mundane school stuff, no need to go into depth about classes. Since last week had three ‘A’ days, thankfully this week had three ‘B’ days. That meant I only had to deal with P.E. on Tuesday and Thursday, which honestly wasn’t that bad. Brett had actually been pretty cool, and while Clint looked like he wanted to kill me he never tried anything. Of course, Brett was never far away from him either. Lunch on those two days was only with Rick and Tom, none of the other guys sat at the table with us. When I found out they still hadn’t talked to Sam yet, I threatened them again, I even added the mysterious ‘or else’… Thankfully they didn’t ask or else what… Hell, I didn’t know…

The other three days were of course my ‘B’ days, where I spent almost the entire day with Sam each day… She did tell me at lunch on Wednesday that Rick and Tom had stopped her in the hall to talk, she said it was a bit awkward, but they seemed cool with her at least. I smirked when she told me that had said a vicious leprechaun had threatened them… I had to laugh, only cause my hair isn’t red…

On Thursday Rick and Tom did invite me, and Sam, to come to the cheap movie theater for the Saturday afternoon matinee. They had hoped that we could all hang out some and they could get to know Sam again, but with me there for a buffer I guess… I felt kinda weird about that, but if they were trying, so no matter how weird it felt, I’d do it for Sam… When I told her about the idea she got all excited and thanked me with a hug and a kiss on the cheek, except her kiss lingered longer than normal and she had almost missed my cheek. As she drew back I felt the corner of her mouth brush the corner of mine, and my knees got weak. Do I need to tell you that trying to only be a friend when all you want to do is be more…? It’s impossible…

During my three study halls that week I did check out some books from the library, mostly self-help books that they had. You guessed it, about overcoming one’s fears. It seems the main key to overcoming your fear is knowing what you’re afraid of… So, they were absolutely no help to me, it only made me almost induce four separate panic attacks just trying to think about overcoming whatever it was, just so I could tell her…

The rest of our spare time that week was used for, you guessed it… Softball… We practiced every afternoon with her pitching, and then changed up to working on her reflexes hitting soft line drives directly at her… I wouldn’t do it first unless she was wearing my catcher helmet, I’d have felt awful had I hurt her. Without an appointment we met with the team earlier on Saturday, and well over half the team showed up to practice with us, for a total of fifteen girls. A few of the girls were interested in learning to try to catch… Until Sam threw one of her fastballs… It just freaked the girls out too much to try it again… I didn’t really understand why, she was throwing a baseball faster than that the last time I had caught with her… Of course, the softball seemed to hurt a bit more and was a lot louder hitting the glove… Overall though we had a great practice, and seeing how the girls were accepting of Sam made me feel great for her… I was relieved to see her part of such a good group of girls, I couldn’t help but see her with them and smile… Which she caught me doing a few times, but instead of getting upset, she just smiled back at me. Which usually resulted in me blushing and turning away…

Once we got cleaned up from the practice, Sam met me back at my house and Mom took us to the old cinema in town. We all referred to it as the ‘cheap seats’ movie place, as it was the older four screen theater in town. It also showed movies that had been out four to five months and the tickets were only two dollars for the matinee, which is what we were aiming for. With it being as old as it was, the popcorn machines were well ‘seasoned’, or at least what my parents called it. Regardless the popcorn was much better than the new multiplex in town.

It did have a small arcade in the lobby, and that’s where we met the guys at. We had decided to see The Avengers, well Rick and Tom decided for us. Neither Sam or I had seen it, since we had both been dealing with our own issues when it was released earlier this year. I had also missed a lot of the movies leading up to this one, which Sam said we would have to rectify as soon as we could. I was also glad to see that Sam was still into action movies, while if she wanted me to I’d see a chick flick… Thankfully she didn’t seem any more interested in those type of movies than the rest of us.

We joked around and played a lot of the arcade games while waiting for the movie, and while at first Rick and Tom seemed a bit… I won’t say uncomfortable, but they were definitely holding back… At first… The longer we hung out, the more they relaxed, and by the time the movie was starting it was almost like old times. Like we used to, Sam and I shared a large popcorn, and about half way through the movie, it suddenly quit feeling like old times. After one too many times of reaching in the bag at the same time and bumping hands, Sam apologized and gave my hand a soft squeeze… Except she didn’t let go for the rest of the movie… Like a fool I didn’t do anything but smile at her and let her keep holding my hand… Even with the greasy popcorn butter covering both our hands, I got that warm flushed feeling that passed through me. As long as I let her hold my hand it stayed, and it honestly felt so good just sitting there next to her… The last thing I wanted to do was let go… So, I didn’t… I realized as the credits were rolling, I couldn’t remember the last half an hour of the movie… All I could do was think how incredible it was to sit there with Sam…

When I finally came to my senses at the after-credit scene, I immediately thought about how I should tell her this evening… So, when the nerves kicked in, and with a stomach full of greasy movie junk food, I got sick… As in bad sick… My stomach ended up empting everything it had, plus it kept trying to empty what just wasn’t there… I could see Sam’s immediate look of concern when I turned green and bolted out of the theater to the restrooms… Rick and Tom kept taking turns checking on me, and keeping Sam filled in on what was going on… With my previous issues, they all were scared… Of course, nowhere near as scared as my Mom was when she came rushing into the boy’s restroom while I was still dry heaving… It seemed Sam told her how bad I was when she came to pick us up, which left her getting out of the car with it still running to rush in and check on me. It was all I could do to calm her down enough not to take me to the E.R.

Sam ended up staying at our house most of that evening, it was like she didn’t want to let me out of her sight. Seeing how much I scared her I tried to apologize several times, and each time I started to tear up… I felt so horrible for upsetting her like I did… We ended up mostly sitting on the couch watching her copies of Thor and Captain America she had brought over after the scare at the theater. She told me it was as good a day as any to stay in and get me ‘up to speed’ on the Marvel-verse. We didn’t cuddle or anything, but she did sit close enough that when I would start to apologize and get choked up, she could just wrap her arm around me and hold me till it passed.

The next week was essentially the same, except I had a total of four panic induced sick moments… Two of them were in school, one of those was bad enough on Friday that the nurse had to check on me in the restroom… Which ended up getting me pulled out of school and taken to the doctor… Which of course they couldn’t find anything wrong with me physically, well anymore wrong than what was now considered normal for me… The good news during my checkup was that I had gained a bit more weight, the bad news was it was in all the wrong places… Which I also asked to the doctor about… I had been on the hormone therapy since I was castrated, which was almost six months ago now. I wanted to know why after almost four months there hadn’t been any noticeable differences, and suddenly in the last two months…Boom… Yeah in the mirror now I can’t make myself look like a guy, maybe an underdeveloped girl, but yeah, definitely a girl. I had hoped for two or three months of being able to take P.E., as it was I wouldn’t make it a full month. His answer made sense, even though I didn’t like it. It seems that I had been so malnourished not only had I been lacking severely in muscle, but also in fat… I had been developing the entire time, but once I regained enough strength to start exercising… The muscle that had formed just highlighted just how much and where the estrogen was distributing my fat… I was still leaner than the doctor wanted, but it was now obvious to me… Now the main problem is going to be how much longer will my clothes be able to hide it. I’ve already gained enough weight my clothes were starting to become snug… Well at least in certain places.

I think I scared my Mom on Saturday morning… I was up and ready long before she had even gotten her first cup of coffee… At least she was somewhat pleasantly surprised to see me actually eager to go get my head examined for a change… I guess there truly is a first time for everything… The Doc was almost as surprised as Mom had been when we got there forty-five minutes early and arrived just as he was unlocking his office.

He greeted us, “Morning, I didn’t expect you two this early? How are you doing Jordan?”

I said, “Morning Doc… I’m… I really need to talk…”

He glanced at me and then to my Mom then back at me, “What’s going on Jordan?”

I said softly, “I really need some help with something…”

Since this was the first time he’d seen me willingly here and ready to talk, he said, “Well let’s go on in to the office… I haven’t had time to make coffee or any other drinks, if either of you want some though.”

Mom spoke up, “I can get drinks and bring them in…” Then she paused for a moment and looked at me and asked, “Do you mind if I sit with you?”

I shook my head, “No mom… I don’t mind…”

She hugged me and whispered, “Go get started, I’ll be in there in a few minutes.”

I just nodded and then looked to the Doc who just motioned me into the room. I immediately sat in the chair I was accustomed to, but this time instead of slouching I sat up straight and was looking down at my hands sitting in my lap.

Dr. Byrnes looked really concerned as he asked, “Jordan, what do you need help with?”

I looked up at him for a second, but I couldn’t keep looking at him. I was about to admit to another person that I was afraid of something, and I felt ashamed of that. Instead of trying to tough it out I knew it was more important to just get it out, so I just stared at my hands as I talked. I told him about Sam, other than I didn’t mention her by name. I told him how she had surprised me that first day of school, and how our friendship just started right off like it used to be.

My mom then walked in, without a word she gave Doc his coffee and handed me a Gatorade, then sat next to me. I thanked her, and then continued on about how my feelings had started changing towards Sam. It was then that I felt the first tear, but I was so focused on getting the words out I didn’t even try to wipe it away. As I told my story more and more joined it, and I barely felt my moms arm around my shoulders.

I told him about our conversation, where she told me she liked guys, and I knew she was interested in me, but as a guy… Then about my fears on what my condition meant to our possible relationship and how I felt that we could only be friends. He listened without interrupting for the entire story. As I was getting to what I needed help with I finally took a pause to wipe my face off with my hands.

“So, what I need help with Doc… I’m afraid to tell her what’s actually happening with me… I’ve read several books about overcoming your fears, and everyone one said I had to know what I was afraid of… The problem is… I don’t know why I’m afraid… When I say afraid, I mean full blown panic attack kind of afraid… Lately they’ve been making me sick… Every time I think about telling her…”

Mom gasped, “The movie theater?”

I just nodded, “That was the first time it actually made me sick… The last time was when you came and got me to take me to the doctor…”

She gave me a squeeze, “Honey, why didn’t you tell me?”

I softly mutter, “Mom… I was afraid… Don’t you get it?” At her questioning look, I asked her, “When was the last time that you remember when I was ever afraid? Of anything?”

She thought for a moment, “Jordan… I don’t remember you ever being afraid… Even as a young boy you were never even afraid of the dark, or anything else… Even in the hospital… You never once acted afraid…”

I nodded, “That’s because I wasn’t… But now… I don’t know what to do… I want to tell her... No, I need to tell her… I’m just so damn afraid to, and I don’t even have a damn clue as to why… I’ve run through every possible scenario that I can, and I’m okay with whatever happens…”

Doc thought about it for a moment, then he told me, “Jordan… Over our talks the last six months I’ve noticed one thing… I think I might know what’s wrong…”

“Then just tell me Doc… Whatever it is I’ll do it…”, I tell him.

“I can’t tell you what to do… I can’t even be sure if I’m right, you have to figure this out for yourself.”, he started to say.

“Then what good are you then if you can’t help me?”, I blurt out in anger. Then softer I pleaded, “I’m sorry… I want help this time… please…”

Softer he said, “What I’m here for, is to help you figure it out… I can’t do it for you though, I can only toss out the breadcrumbs that you need to follow…”

I nodded, “I think I get it…”

He sighed, “Okay… You’ve already covered all your reasons of why you aren’t afraid… Let’s try and think of what will happen when you tell her…”

I said, “Doc, I’ve already thought of everything that might happen… That’s all that I’ve been thinking about the last two weeks…”

Calmly he stated, “You’ve thought of how she’ll respond, things that she might say…That’s not everything… Humor an old man okay? Close your eyes and try to picture her face… Okay now imagine what happens, not what she says, but what happens to her expression when you tell her that you’re transitioning to save your life… Keep your eyes closed and just tell me.”

Keeping my eyes closed, I say, “She’s upset at first… But understanding… Maybe a bit jealous that I’m already taking hormones.”

I hear his voice, “Ok and when you tell her about becoming a girl, and knowing she’s attracted to guys…”

I think for a moment, “It’s about the same… She’d be upset, but understanding… Then maybe relief that I can still be her friend…”

I hear him take a deep breath, and then ask, “And now after all that… When you tell her that you never wanted to be a girl in the first place…”

I thought hard about that, at how she would respond to that… She was transitioning to be herself, I had already been myself, but still transitioning… Then I pictured the expression I thought she would have. I gasped, and my eyes popped open…

He asked, “What did you see Jordan?”

I softly whispered, “I saw… I saw the look on her face… It was the same look she had the last time I saw her at the hospital…” At his confused expression, I added, “When I asked her not to come back to visit me anymore… I told her I didn’t want her to remember me like that…”

Mom spoke up, “You had told all of your friends that honey…”

I said, “I know… That’s because they all had the same look mom…”

Both Dr. Byrnes and my mom had the same confused expression as they were trying to understand. Dr. Byrnes was the first to ask, “What look Jordan?”

I tried not to remember all the different faces that stared at me those last few weeks at the hospital before I couldn’t take it anymore, but I couldn’t. The memories came back to me in waves, and I felt my body start to tremble. I finally said, “They were looking at me with pity… They were all feeling so sorry for me… I couldn’t take it anymore… So, I came up with that lie, so I wouldn’t have to see them look at me like that anymore…”

Dr. Byrnes told me, “Jordan they were just concerned, you were probably mistaking that for pity.”

I blurted out, “No! You’re wrong Doc. I already told you they had given up… Mom… You and Dad had too… It was no longer concern people were showing me… It was pity… It was like I wasn’t even there anymore… It was like being conscious for my own funeral…”

Mom gasped, “Jordan… I… Why didn’t you say anything?”

“I tried Mom… You didn’t listen to me… I didn’t need my friends and family to mourn me while I was still breathing… I needed you all to help keep my spirits up…I needed you to help me laugh… I wasn’t dead yet… You all acted like I was…”, I told her through my tears.

Mom was speechless as she just held her hand over her mouth, Dr. Byrnes started to try to rationalize with me, “Jordan, you’ve got to understand…”

I interrupted him, “No Doc, I don’t have to… Do you know how it feels for that to happen to you? To have all the people you care about constantly look at you with pity? Like you’re already dead? Do you have the slightest clue? That’s what you need to understand!”

He shook his head, “Jordan… I’m sorry… I don’t know what that’s like… Can you tell me?”

I wrapped my arms around myself as I slowly rocked, after a few moments to gather and calm myself I looked up and stared at him directly in his eyes, “Day after day of that… I started thinking maybe I was ready to die… I don’t know if I can take Sam looking at me like that again…”

We ended that day’s session with mom wrapped around me trying to match me tear for tear. For the first time Dr. Byrnes was speechless… Oddly enough as we left to go home, I realized it had been the most productive session we had ever had… I knew what I was afraid of finally… I had something to face now… Now it was just to find the courage to face it…


When we got home the first thing I did was text Sam and let her know I wasn’t able to make practice. At least I was honest and told her that I a rough session with the shrink was the reason. She was going to cancel going to the Saturday practice, and come over but I was able to talk her into going to the practice. Besides they needed to break in a new girl to catch, and if I wasn’t there it would force someone to have to do it. I told her to call me this evening, I knew that she wanted to come over, but I told her that my parents and I had a lot to talk about after today…

That’s what my parents and I did, was talk… I told them everything, starting from what I talked about during my session, up till now. I mean everything, including my feelings towards Sam, and how much I’ve physically changed. That ended up with me having to endure an inspection from my Mom… I could tell it was hard for Dad to talk about it, and I’m glad he didn’t want to see. After all I was his only child, a son… A son that was now growing breasts…

Mom was at least kind about it, in a brutal way… She didn’t pull any punches with me, at least she was surprised that when she started to demand that I okay my waiver for P.E. and I told her that was already the first thing I was going to do on Monday… She had me strip down to my underwear and as I did, I saw a small tear in the corner of her eye. For a moment I could tell she felt sorry for me, but after our talk she shook it off and started her inspection. She used a measuring tape to check all my measurements and estimated that I was now a large A… I had thought that starting an upper body workout would help disguise the ‘fat’ that had formed, unfortunately for me it only caused them to be pushed out and be more prominent…

Mom and I talked for a while after that, and even though I knew logically that I needed them, I cringed when she suggested that I needed new clothes… My jeans still fit me in the waist, but from the extra ‘fat’ and the countless squats that I’ve done with catching practice, my thighs and butt had become fairly enlarged from what they had been. It didn’t stop at my jeans either, even my underwear was getting tight around my hips as well. The problem wasn’t only there, I found as I started filling out, my shirts were starting to be a lot less baggy than they were, and it wouldn’t take much for someone to notice the growths on my chest with as snug as they were getting. Thankfully, I was able to get out of going shopping that afternoon, but since I was still changing she told me she’d just go to the thrift stores to get some things to get me by for right now… Thankfully she promised nothing girly, at least I didn’t even have to mention anything about that.

When I talked to Sam later that afternoon, I filled her in on as much as I could, at least until I started to feel the panic rise back up. While I wasn’t able to tell her what my medical issue was, I did tell her that we had figured out what was causing my panic attacks. I promised her that now I knew what was causing them, it was something I could now face and for her to please be patient with me a bit longer. I think she heard either the panic in my voice or the change in my breathing as we were talking, and she changed the subject to how practice had gone. She told me the girls were also worried about me, it seems the high school rumor mill had been in full swing as word got around of me getting sick at school. She also told me they were no closer to finding a catcher yet, and they all hoped I could be there next weekend. I promised her that I’d be there, no matter what. As we got off the phone, she told me that she’d see me Monday morning for our walk to school, and then told me how much she’d missed hanging around with me today. I couldn’t help but smile as I told her how much I’d missed her too.

I spent the rest of the evening and part of the next morning trying to do some of the mental exercises I had read about, trying to overcome my fear. Every time I thought I gotten myself psyched up enough, I would then stare at her picture I had saved to my tablet and start to ‘rehearse’ my prepared speech, only to freeze up again and again. I was getting overly frustrated, and then promised myself that if I couldn’t get up the nerve to tell her during this next week than I would force myself to do it next Saturday after practice. Somehow, I’d figure out a way to do it. I thought with the way I kept freezing up trying to talk to her picture, I would probably need the extra time that we’d have on Saturday. It seemed like a good plan to me at the time… How’s that saying go? When men make plans the gods laugh?

With my plan in place, when I met Sam on Monday morning when she arrived, I was in a really good mood. She was extremely surprised at how upbeat I was, but that still didn’t stop her from giving me a long hug and yet another kiss on the cheek as soon as she walked in the living room. Since I had already confessed to my parents how I felt about Sam, I caught my mom smiling at us during the long hug. My good mood continued all the way to school, as soon as was started to split up my mood started to falter. She picked up on it, but I reassured her I was okay… There was just something I had to do first thing, I didn’t elaborate but she knew I wasn’t happy.

That thing I had promised my Mom that I was going to do, was go in a tell Mr. Miller to put my waiver for P.E. into my folder. When I told him he looked sad, and apologized to me, but then again, he understood what was going on. He also told me that I’d have to go to P.E. today, but not to dress out. He said that would give them time to swap my schedule, now that school was in full swing that he couldn’t do the swap the same day as he did at the beginning of school. I told him that was okay, and I needed to clean out my stuff from the gym locker anyway. I didn’t make it to homeroom that morning, the meeting with Mr. Miller took up most of my time. I was at least thankful for that, since I wouldn’t have to deal with Teddy. After his outburst that one day at lunch we just didn’t really talk much and being around him was more than a little awkward now.

Other then my two hours of sitting on the bleachers for P.E. the day was just kind of blah. When I walked into the gym, the coach was already waiting on me. He pulled me off to the side and gave me the ‘I wish I had thirty more with your heart’ speech… I thanked him and cleaned out my gym stuff as the rest of the guys were starting to change. Most of them ignored me, Clint laughed and tried to make fun of me, while Rick, Brett, and even Teddy to some degree, seemed concerned. Rick asked me if it was due to my getting sick the last week or two, I just told them that it was something like that and then proceeded to my seat in the bleachers for the next hour and a half. I didn’t expect it to be as hard as it was, watching the guys run around and do whatever it was the coach would have them do. Just knowing that I’d never get to experience that again… Yeah, it was just hard… When the guys went to hit the showers, I didn’t even wait. I just left… What were they going to do? Kick me out of P.E. for cutting class early?

At least the last class was with Sam, and while she picked up on my mood from earlier, she didn’t say anything about it. It didn’t take long before things were pretty much back to normal after that, and we continued our normal routine for the rest of the day. Even as good as she already was, she was showing improvement every day with her pitching. We continued to work on adding different pitches, and by the time the season started she was going to be dangerous.

As I settled in that evening I was still scared but putting a ‘deadline’ on when I was going to come clean had given me a lot more focus. I was still scared, okay maybe terrified, but I knew it was going to happen. I knew at that moment that nothing was going to stop me from telling her everything, I just had five more days to go… You know the best laid plans, right?

My best laid plans fell apart on Wednesday, right after lunch. I had eaten with Rick and Tom, but it was mostly in silence. I think they were scared that my health was going downhill again, and while I told them that I was okay, it was obvious that they didn’t believe me… I ended up being the first to leave the cafeteria, I couldn’t just sit there any longer with their stares… I thought that maybe once I come clean with Sam, I can come clean with everyone… It’s not like I’m going to be hiding things for much longer anyway.

Since I wasn’t going to P.E. anymore after lunch on my ‘A’ days, I headed up to my locker to get some books to work on during my new study hall. I thought since I had time, that I could swing by Sam’s locker and hopefully bump into her… When I rounded the corner in the hallway I did see that she was there, but she wasn’t alone… That’s when my plan totally came apart…

The hallway was fairly crowded, but I clearly saw Sam trying to hide behind her locker door while Clint was taunting her. There were several students standing around watching but not doing anything but watch this asshole verbally assault my friend. Needless to say, I was pissed… I had to push my way through the crowd surrounded both of them, and I felt my anger rise even further as one of the people I had to shove to get through was Teddy. He was just standing there watching… What a dick…

“Move asshole!”, I yelled as I pushed my way by him.

That surprised him, and he blurted out, “Jordan?! Don’t!”

As soon as I got past Teddy, Clint shoved Sam and yelled, “Look at me freak when I’m talking to you!”

I immediately dropped my backpack and ran full speed into him shoving him as far away from her as I could and yelled, “Stay the fuck away from her!”

Time just sort of paused, as everyone just stared at me. I guess I can’t say I could blame them, here I was, a five foot nothing standing up to one of the football players who made me look like a child standing next to him. It had to look like I had lost my mind, maybe I had…

Clint was the first to react, he laughed… “That’s the last time you fuck with my fun…”

I shook my head, “Fuck you Clint, you’re not going to touch her again!”

He laughed again, “Who’s going to stop me? You? You fucking midget!”

Sam whispered, “Jordan don’t do this!”

I glanced around to make sure she was okay, but as soon as I turned back to Clint I barely had time to react from the punch that I saw heading directly at my face. I started to try to roll away, but he still caught me with a glancing blow across my cheek. It spun me around and slammed me into the lockers. It was a hard lick, and I struggled to get back to my feet before the next swing. I stumbled and heard a lot of commotion before I was able to get back on my feet.

Brett was there and holding Clint in a headlock and was wrestling him away from Sam and me. I heard him yell, “What the fuck are you thinking?!? I’m not covering for you ever again, you dumb shit!” While they were struggling he glanced at me, I guess to see if I was alright. I just nodded at him, relieved he was there. Maybe I should have been more shocked than I was that he came to our rescue, but then again, he had done it once before. About that moment in the struggling I watched as Brett rammed his head into the lockers across the hallway, and Clint went limp.

I took a sigh of relief, but before I could turn to help Sam up, Teddy came up to me yelling, “What the fuck were you thinking dude? He’d have killed you…”

I spun around and faced him, “Somebody had to step in, especially since you weren’t going to. You think it’s okay for assholes like that to pick on anyone they want?”

He deflated slightly, “Jord… You could have gotten really hurt… Why’d you risk that it for him?”

He just kept pushing my buttons… “Her! You idiot, Sam’s a her. Does she look like a guy to you, dumbass?” I didn’t give him time to answer, I was on a roll. “Sam’s my friend Teddy, which is more than I can say for you! Do you remember when we were in fourth grade and those high school kids started picking on you trying to make you do the ‘truffle shuffle’?” He winced at that memory, the teenagers were calling him Chunk like the fat kid in the Goonies. “Just who stood up for you back then?”

He snorted, “Dude… You got your ass kicked…”

I yelled, “That doesn’t matter! Who stood up for you?”

He whispered, “You did…”

I was still yelling, “Because you were my friend! Sam is my friend… I won’t let assholes pick on my friends! You should have stepped in, she was one of your friends too.”

He muttered, “But... She’s changed man… She’s not the same person she used to be…”

I screamed, “You’re wrong Tubby! The Sam that you knew? The one that was your friend? That Sam is right here and if you’d just talk to her for fifteen minutes… Fuck that! Five minutes is all it would take… Then you’d realize that Sam is finally happy… Once you realize that… It’s fucking amazing man!”

I paused, I was still so angry though. I growled at him, “You should have stood up to him Teddy… Even if you don’t want to be friends with her… You still should have stepped in… You know what it’s like to be bullied by bigger kids.” I saw the look on his face, that hurt him.

He tried to blow it off, “You’re crazy man… Do you not see how big he is? He’d have killed me…”

I blurted out, “Really?!? You’re almost as big as he is. Do you not see how small I am? It didn’t stop me from at least trying!”

He shook his head, “Like I said, you’re crazy Jordan…”

Still yelling at him, “You know what? Fine I’m crazy… At least I’m not a fucking coward!!!”

As I said that last word, all the anger I was feeling just disappeared… I glanced at Teddy and how hurt he was at what I said, then I looked down at Sam who was still sitting there looking up at me in awe. Then I realized… I was a coward… I have been one since that day in the hospital when I asked her not to come back… I glanced back and forth at them for a few moments, completely stunned at that revelation… I was willing to stand up to certain death for Sam… I couldn’t overcome my own bullshit fear though to tell her the truth… It was Teddy who snapped me out of my daze.

“Dude… Are you crying?”, he asked with a hint of concern in his voice.

I reached up and felt the wetness on both of cheeks and didn’t realize when I had started this. I then looked around at the crowd still around us, and the anger I had felt came back a bit… This time it was directed at myself… I yelled, “FUCK!!!” and quickly snatched up my backpack to get away.

I heard Teddy say, “I’m sorry Sam… I really am.

She told him, “It’s okay Teddy…”

She then called out for me, but I had already shoved my way out of the crowd and was trying to just get away. I made a break for one of the stairwells and no sooner did I enter I felt weak, I just wanted to hide for a moment and I knew I couldn’t outrun her. I went around to behind the stairs and sat down trying to hide.

A moment later, I heard the door open and Sam called out for me. I tried not to make a sound, but I couldn’t stop the soft sobbing. I heard footsteps coming around the corner, and then heard her voice.

“Oh my God Jordan! What’s wrong?”, she blurted out as she came up and squatted down beside me. I tried to keep my face hidden behind my hands, but she quickly pulled them off to the side, “Let me see Jordan… That’s going to leave a bruise, but you should be fine… What’s wrong?”

I just mumbled, “I’m sorry…”

She softly laughed, “What are you sorry for? You came to my rescue… You’re my hero. Every girl wishes for one of their very own. But why did you step in, he could have hurt you.”

I finally glanced up at her and whispered, “Because nobody else was going to do it…”

She smiled, and gently stroked my cheek wiping the tears that had finally quit falling away. She asked, “Just what were you thinking?”

I laughed softly, even though my cheek hurt some, “Probably not much… Just that I had to stop him… Did he stop messing with you?” She nodded softly, then I said, “Then I guess I showed him, right?”

She laughed, and I couldn’t help but smile at her. I looked down and it was in that moment, I knew I was no longer afraid to tell her. She was my best friend, someone I was pretty sure I was in love with, and I thought she felt the same way about me. I knew I could do this, I softly said, “Sam I need to tell you something.”

I hadn’t paid attention to how close she had gotten to me, and when I looked back up at her, her face was only inches away from my own. Before I could say or do anything our lips met. I was so stunned I just sat there for several long seconds while she kissed me, and that warm flushed feeling that I had been having, completely filled my body with an intensity I had never felt before.

I think she misunderstood why I froze as she started to pull away, “Jordan I’m sorry… I didn’t mean to…”

I didn’t let her finish though, I slid my hand up her cheek and gently around her neck to pull her back down to me. As we kissed again, this time with me kissing back I felt like I was going to explode, my entire body was tingling and all I knew is I never wanted it to stop. I gently cupped her cheeks with my hands as we kissed, and then I felt her rest her hands on my chest. As her hands brushed across my nipples my body arched as I moaned into her mouth with my body shaking. We kissed for a few more seconds before she realized what her hands were resting on, and as she gave them a soft squeeze she quickly drew back.

“Jordan… What the fuck?!?”, she exclaimed.

My mind was in a fog, and as my body was still tingling all I could say was, “Wait… let me explain!”

She told me, “Explain what? That you’ve got breasts? Breasts that are bigger than mine?” I could see the hurt on her face.

I tried to sit up some more and told her, “Yeah, its not what you think though.”

“Not what I think? How are they so… It’s like you’re on hormones…”, she said in shock. I guess from the look on my face she got her answer to that. “You are… What the fuck Jordan? Are you transitioning?”

I nodded but said, “It’s not what you think, please let me explain.”

She stood up and muttered, “Fuck, fuck, FUCK… How could I have been so stupid… The emotional outbursts… Why couldn’t you tell me!!! Did you think I wouldn’t understand? Really Jordan?? REALLY!!!”

I tried to get up, but my entire body was weak and slightly wobbly from the kiss and whatever had happened to me when she touched my breasts, I pleaded, “Sam I promise… This isn’t what I want… I don’t want this!”

She was crying now as she backed away from me, ‘What did you not want? For me to find out? For me to finally know that you don’t trust me. You were my best friend… I thought… I thought…”

I finally was able to get up on my feet, but I had to hold the wall to keep from stumbling, “Sam… please… listen to me…”, I begged.

She shook her head, “Jordan… I just… I can’t talk to you right now… I just can’t” She then sprinted out of the stairwell leaving me alone to try to follow her.

After I stumbled for a few steps I managed to get to the stairwell door and as I opened it I almost ran into Mr. Miller.

“Jordan… There you are, thank god… Son you need to come with me.”, He told me.

I begged, “Sir I can’t I need to go and find…”

“Jordan, that’s not an option… Brett has told us what happened… We’ve already called your parents… Now come with me.”, He ordered.

I felt my shoulders slump, and I uttered under my breath, “Shit…”

To be continued.

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