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This story deals with many areas of teenage mental health which go deep into the reality of depression; thoughts and attempts at suicide and death. These topics are a reality of growing up for some gay teens. I draw from my experiences to explain this difficult time of life but accept these topics are not for everyone so I just want to add this note to let folks know before you start this book. Many thanks, James

For Everything You Are - 7. Him

En route to the airport. 10.44am


The Stevens family arrived at Gatwick airport around twenty minutes after leaving their house for the last time. As Alan pulled the car into a slot, he pulled out his mobile phone. Turning the engine off. Dialing a number, he waited, and after two rings, a young man answered.

"Jerry's Auto Exchange, Lee speaking, how can I help?"

"Eh, yeah, hi, this is Alan Stevens; I called you yesterday about the car.

"Oh yeah, I remember; so, it's at the airport, right, and uh, we agreed three thousand eight hundred?"

"Yeah, that's right," Alan replied. "We are going to go check our baggage in, and then I'll come back out and do the deal with you. Can you meet me in, say, one hour?"

"That's no problem, Mr Stevens, um, would you like cash or cheque?"

"Better take cash; I need to exchange some, anyway, better your money than mine," Alan chuckled.

"Cash it is then, sir, see you in an hour. Bye for now."

"Yeah, bye." The line went dead.

"You're selling the car, Dad?" asked Jake, immediately realising it was a stupid question. Alan just laughed.

"What, Jake, you want me to leave it here for a few years to rust?"

"Yeah, okay, I know it was a silly question," Jake said, frowning.

"Hey Jenny, Jake, before we get out, there is something I really want to say. Something I should have maybe said a while ago now, but we have just been so busy and stuff, it never seemed appropriate." Jenny was looking at Alan while Jake pulled himself forward from the back seat. "I, um, just wanted to say that I know this move has been hard on both of you for different reasons, and I know the sacrifices you both made when agreeing to this. I'm really glad, you know, that I have you guys, and the fact you would do something this big and make such a huge change in your lives for my work. So I guess I... well, just wanna say thank you and want you to know that I'm taking this job, not just for me, but to make sure you both have the very best life in the long term. Now, Jake, I know this has been especially hard on you, and I'm sorry about…well, everything, really. I just hope you'll see the reasons why we need to do this in time." Alan smiled as he finished, hoping that his speech was not too sad or depressing.

"It's cool, Dad, and yeah, I have been cut up about this, but me and Mum, we talked, right? And it's gonna work out," Jake replied, smiling at his dad.

"We're all in this together, Alan, for better or worse," Jenny added, placing her hand on Alan's leg.

"Well then, what do you say, shall we go to America?" Alan asked, enthusiastically. They all exited the car and began to take their luggage from the boot. The icy wind had picked up and was turning everyone's face a shiny red.

"Man, it's freezing today," Jake said, rubbing his hands together. Alan shut the boot and locked up the car. He led them into the terminal, where a blast of hot air drenched them as the automatic doors opened, sending a warm wave of relief over them as heat replaced cold.

"Where to, Dad?" Jake said, looking around.

"Check-in first, son. Let's get rid of these cases and lighten the load." Alan advanced and glanced up at the departure and arrivals board. "Hmm, now where are we…ah, there. BA1745, gate two, it says." Alan scanned the various check-in desk screens, fixing his eyes on the one they needed. "C'mon, guys, over here." He led them over to the young woman who was currently staffing the desk.

"Good afternoon, sir. How many of you are travelling today?" She smiled, exposing her immaculate teeth.

"Three," he said, looking behind him.

"Okay, can I take your passports, please?" Alan turned to Jenny, who was already pulling them from her handbag. Alan passed them to her, and she began typing on the computer. "Did you all pack your own bags today?" All three of them nodded together. "Good, can you place the first case on the belt, please?" Jake lifted the first of the cases onto the belt and looked at the weight indicator. "Can I ask, do you have any sharp objects, liquid, or anything flammable in your cases, or anything listed on this card?" she asked, pointing to an upright sign on her desk.

"No, nothing," Alan said.

"Okay, next case, please," said the woman, as the first bag was shunted somewhat violently along the belt until it fell and disappeared off to the right.

The rest of the cases were checked in, and Alan suggested they go and find somewhere to sit for a while. Being an international airport, Gatwick was quite large, with many shops and restaurants.

"Do you want to get a drink or something, Jake, and how are your sugar levels?" Jenny asked.

"Just going to the toilet," Alan interrupted before letting Jake answer his mother.

"Not sure," Jake replied. "I never checked this morning. Can you hand me my tester?" Jenny pulled the contraption from her bag, and Jake pricked himself with it before placing the tab of blood into the machine. The machine beeped seconds later, showing a 9. Jenny pulled Jake's hand, holding the device into her view.

"Jake!" she said sharply. "It should not be that high; what have I told you?" She pulled out his insulin from her bag, clicked the pen around a few notches and handed it to him.

"Urrg, do I have to?" Jake said, shuddering. He hated this part of his disease – the needle. He would instead rather feel lightheaded and shit than stick that thing in himself. Taking the pen from his mother, though, he closed his eyes and jabbed it in his stomach through his sweater. He found it weird that although it never really hurt, it never got easier to do. Jenny looked at him with a satisfied look on her face.

"If I have to start doing twice-daily checks on you again, Jake I will, mark my words. You need to take proper care of yourself, understand?"

"Yeah," he mumbled.


"Okay, I get it, jeez, Mum."

"Don't jeez, Mum me, when you end up rolling around the floor convulsing, with foam coming from your mouth."

Jake huffed and looked away from her. "Yeah, thanks for that image, Mum," he replied, cringing.

"Well, sometimes you need to hear the consequences." She didn't need to say anymore.

"Right, well, I better go sell this car then," Alan said, returning from the toilet. Jake was glad his father didn't know about his sugar levels, and he knew his mother wouldn't tell him unless it was necessary. Alan's best friend had died as a result of hypoglycaemia back when they were in college. So after he found out Jake was diabetic, he got furious when he found out Jake was not sticking to his medication regimen consistently.




Alan had walked outside the terminal, back into the car park, and called the cell number to the car place stored on his phone. The dealership worker answered and said he was about five minutes away. Alan walked over to his car, got in, and waited. Moments later, he scanned a small van entering the car park with Jerry's Autos written on the side. He left the car and walked over to greet them.

"Alan Stevens?" said the young man in the driver's seat.

"Yes, that's me," he said, showing the man his driving licence for proof.

"Can you show me where the car is, and I'll have my colleague write you out a sales receipt?"

"Sure, follow me." Alan led the man to his car and let him have the keys. Lee looked around the exterior, then got in and started the engine, revving it a few times.

"Engine sounds okay, half tank of fuel, clean inside, okay then, looks like we have a deal," he said, smiling at Alan. Lee's workmate approached the car and handed Alan the sales receipt, along with a black plastic wallet containing the money. "Would you like to count it?" Lee said, switching off the engine. Alan looked inside the wallet and saw a wedge of £50 notes.

"It all looks here," he said, not really knowing, but trusting the dealership not to con him. Plus, he didn't want to reveal that kind of money to any lurking opportunist.

"Okay, well, if there is nothing else, we'll take the car off your hands, Mr Stevens, and thank you for doing business with us," Lee said, smiling before starting the engine again. His colleague returned to the van and followed Lee out of the car park while Alan looked on. Goodbye, old girl, he thought, as the car disappeared from his sight. Alan then returned to the terminal to catch up with his family.




Cody was in his bedroom, his eyes fixed on the sealed box lying on his bed. He went over to his dresser and pulled out a penknife before heading over to it. He sat down and hesitated before slowly piercing the brown parcel tape. He carefully ran the knife around until the lid could be taken off. He just sat there for a moment, almost scared that once he opened it, it would be like some genie he could not put back in, should the contents make him too emotional. Then, thinking what Jake would have left him, his hands trembling, he gripped the lid of the box and slowly pulled it off.

Looking at the contents, he could see a few items that immediately conjured memories. The yoyo, various keyrings, a small picture of them taken on a rollercoaster, and while he knew almost immediately that he had given Jake these items, there were others he could not remember so easily. He began taking the items out and inspecting them before setting each one on his bed, his emotions starting to falter again. As he pulled out the last item, he carefully studied it - a blank CD in a protective wallet. He flipped it over, again and again, hoping each time he did, writing would appear, telling him what was on it, but there was nothing.

Curious and scared, he removed the CD from its wallet, made his way over to his hi-fi system, and switched it on. Pressing the eject button, he hesitated before placing the CD on the rack and watched as it closed. He heard the laser engage and the disc spin up before quickly pressing pause. He began pacing his room, running his hands through his hair. Anyone watching would have been convinced he was on the verge of panic. He sat down on his bed and pulled his hands to his face to calm himself. He knew that whatever was on the disc was gonna hit him hard, so he decided to just get it out of the way. Quickly getting up, he closed his door, locked it, went back over to the CD player, and hit the play button. As the introduction filled the room, he immediately knew it was a song by James Blunt. He sat back down and listened as haunting words began to invade his ears.

#### Did I disappoint you or let you down?
Should I be feeling guilty or let the judges frown?
'Cause I saw the end before we'd begun
Yes, I saw you were blind, and I knew I had won
So I took what's mine by eternal right
Took your soul out into the night
It may be over, but it won't stop there
I am here for you if you'd only care
You touched my heart, you touched my soul
Changed my life and all my goals
And love is blind, and that I knew when
My heart was blinded by you
I've kissed your lips and held your head
Shared your dreams and shared your bed
I know you well, I know your smell
I've been addicted to you
Goodbye my lover
Goodbye my friend
You have been the one
You have been the one for me
Goodbye my lover
Goodbye my friend
You have been the one
You have been the one for me
I am a dreamer, and when I wake
You can't break my spirit; it's my dreams you take
And as you move on, remember me
Remember us and all we used to be
I've seen you cry, I've seen you smile
I've watched you sleeping for a while
I'd be the father of your child
I'd spend a lifetime with you
I know your fears, and you know mine
We've had our doubts, but now we're fine
And I love you, I swear that's true
I cannot live without you
Goodbye my lover
Goodbye my friend
You have been the one
You have been the one for me

Even minutes after the song had finished, Cody sat, face wet with tears, in a trance. He was broken, and everything that had ever been said between them since they found their feelings for each other was flooding back through his mind - the yelling, the hurt, the hugs, the laughs, and the heartache that had consumed both of them. Their time had passed; it was too late, too late to fix it, too late for honesty, and too late to apologise. The song was his retribution for not giving Jake all of himself when he needed it and when it mattered. Jake's moving could not have been stopped, but he thought this could have ended so much better.




Seated on the plane by the window, Jake stared out as the aircraft was being pushed back. He was in a faraway place, thinking about Cody and how he already missed him. He wondered what his friend was doing - was he laughing, crying, asleep, out with Kit? He hoped that at some point, Cody thought of him. Then he thought about the box, the box with all their memories, the Cody box.

"Are you okay, Jake?" asked his mother, tapping his leg.

"Uh, what…oh, yeah, I'm fine, just thinking is all."

"About anything in particular?" she asked, digging a bit.

"Mum, do you think Cody will be okay?" Jake asked, still looking out of the plane window. Jenny thought about his question. The truth was, she didn't really know herself. Would he be okay?

"I think he will be just fine," she replied, trying to sound convincing.

"I hope so," was all Jake could say.

The whole family watched as the air hostess went through the safety drill, and then the captain came over the intercom.

"Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen; welcome aboard this British Airways flight to Reno, Nevada. My name is Captain Martin Harris, and joining me on this flight is First Officer Gary Simmonds. So, the weather is looking okay as we depart, with a few storm clouds building over the Atlantic, but we'll try and get above those. We're looking at a total flight time today of thirteen hours and thirty-six minutes. So please sit back and enjoy the flight." The crew took their seats as the plane pulled onto the runway and waited for clearance.

"I thought we were flying to Beale?" Jenny turned to Alan, looking somewhat confused.

"We pick another plane up at Reno, honey. Commercial flights can't land in Beale; it's military only. So we should have a person from the base meeting us at the airport."

"Oh," Jenny said as the plane's engines roared into life, causing the plane to vibrate as it gathered speed. Jake felt his stomach flutter as the rear wheels left the tarmac, confirming they were now airborne.

"I hate that feeling," he shouted over the noise. Jenny just smiled at him and held his hand.

About an hour into the flight, after refreshments had been served, they had all had slipped into a light snooze. After that, the flight was mostly uneventful, barring a few jolts of turbulence. Dinner was served six hours in and then snacks again after nine .Apart from the periods when they were eating and drinking, Alan and Jake had been asleep, while Jenny had been reading a novel, unable to really get comfortable.

Jake was awoken by the sound of the captain's voice again. "Good evening, ladies and gentlemen, we, uh, have about an hour until our arrival, and we have now started our descent; local time will be around nineteen thirty. Cabin crew, please prepare the cabin for landing."

Jake looked out the window again, following the dimly lit roads that connected the various towns - an orange glow, bright in some areas and dim in others. He fixed his eyes on specific points of light, wondering if that was where they would live, but the truth was, they were nowhere near their new house.

"Can you see anything, Jake?" Alan said, leaning forward to look at his son.

"Not really, Dad, I can make out some buildings and the odd car moving, but that's about it," he replied.

"We'll be on the ground soon, and you can stretch your legs," Alan said, seeing Jake was starting to get fidgety in his seat.

The ground was now coming up fast as the plane slowed, the hydraulic systems whirring as the flaps extended. The plane's engines surged momentarily before a light thud was felt, the captain then slammed the plane's engines into reverse, and the Boeing 747 began to roar as it lost speed, eventually veering off onto a taxiway.

"Well, we made it," Alan said, smiling. Jenny put her book down and sighed. "What's wrong, Jen?" he said, looking concerned.

"It's just the thought of now having to get on another plane after spending thirteen hours on this one."

"Honey, the next flight is only a hundred and forty miles; we'll be there in no time," he said, cupping her head in his hand. The plane came to a stop at the gate, and the over-eager people started to get up, even though they had nowhere to go as yet. Alan, Jenny, and Jake just stayed seated to avoid the chaos. As the door opened, everyone started to file off. A chill came through the plane, which actually surprised Alan as he always thought it would be warmer. At least it was not as cold as the place from which they had come, he thought.

The family made their way to International Customs, then baggage reclaim, before arriving outside in the dry desert evening.

"Where do we go, Dad?" Jake asked as he took in his surroundings.

"There…over there!" Alan pointed towards a young man in an Army uniform holding up a sign that read, Stevens. " Let's go, guys," Alan said as he made his way over to the guy holding it. Once the young man saw the family, he lowered the board and smiled. Jake studied the hunk in front of him. He was tall, roughly 6'1", about 18, well-built and with a typical army buzz cut showing around the sides of his fatigue cap. His dark brown eyes gleaming in the dim light, he was clean-shaven, facial skin smooth, with plump pink lips that just said, Kiss me. That is fucking hot, Jake thought, looking at his first American in the flesh. I could get used to this; he thought, adjusting himself discreetly.

"Would you please follow me, sir?" The young man said to Alan after greeting the family, not that Jake had realised there had been a greeting. He was too much under the spell of this Adonis before him. "Do you need to freshen up at all, ma'am, sirs?" the guy asked in a deep authoritarian voice Jake found utterly seductive.

"Uh, no, that's okay," Jenny replied, shaking her head, and Alan just raised his hand to signal he was fine.

"We have dispatched a helicopter for your family, sir; I'll be driving you over to the pad immediately to board."

"Helicopter?" Alan asked, confused. "I thought we were travelling by plane?"

"There are none available, sir; we had to help out with a brush fire 40 miles west of the base. It was either the chopper or overland." Alan looked at Jenny, shrugging his shoulders; she didn't look impressed.

The young man led them towards an old 1950's Jeep parked nearby. It was dark green with a wheel clamped to the front. "We're going in this?" Alan said incredulously. The young man laughed, causing Jake to flinch as his cock twitched again. This guy is a wet dream waiting to happen, he thought, almost dribbling now.

"What did you expect, sir, a limousine?"

"No, it's just we have been stuck on a plane for thirteen hours, and I just thought…never mind," Alan said, shaking his head. "At least we're not going far." The young man smiled again before opening the door. Jake took the opportunity to get in the front before anything was said; he wanted to be next to the driver, and seeing as the Jeep had one long seat in the front, he made every effort to sit as far to the left as he could.

"I'll load your luggage, sir, and then we'll get going," the man said, leaving Alan and Jenny to get in the back. They didn't mind Jake taking the front seat; they were just glad he seemed happy, rather too happy, Jenny thought, as she looked at her son regarding the young soldier every opportunity he had.

The young man came round to the side and noticed Jake sitting in the front seat. He smiled as he got in and started the engine. As the car pulled out of the main terminal, the bumps along the road were making Jake's knee brush up against the young guy's leg. "So, what's your name?" asked Jake.

"Ethen Jones," said the man, turning to look at Jake, "And yours?"

"Jake… Jake Stevens," he gushed.

"Well, nice to meet you, Jake; I guess we're going to be neighbours," said the man in a way that suggested he was not saying anything out of the ordinary.

"What?!" Jake choked out, trying to compose himself immediately. "Neighbours?"

"Yeah, you guys are moving into the empty house near the base?" Jake turned round to look at Alan for confirmation.

"Um, yeah, that's right. How did you know?" Alan said, looking as surprised as Jake.

"My dad told me; I think he's going to be working with you, his name is Colin Jones. He works at the base with intelligence, and he said a British family was moving into old Sam's house. So that's why I offered to come to pick you guys up. You know, so you have a local face and someone who can tell you about the area and stuff?"

"Oh, right," said Alan, leaning back in his seat, thinking about what the young man had said, "Well, thank you, Ethen."

"So, Ethen, do you work in intelligence, too, or something?" Jake asked, becoming excited by the recently revealed information. Ethen just laughed.

"Oh no, Jake, I'm only seventeen. I just help out around the base; I wanna train to be an aircraft mechanic when I hit eighteen."

"Strange; don't you have school?"

"Dropped out," he said, matter of fact. "My mom died two years ago, and my dad was worried about me being at home before and after school all the time. I now spend a lot of my time on the base, so I'm close to him. He didn't like that I dropped out of school, but it's an outcome that's come to suit both of us. I spend a lot of time up there as my dad stays on base most days. The big house gets kinda lonely, you know?" Jake just nodded as he hung on to every word. Alan and Jenny had been listening and were looking at each other now and again, thinking how isolated the kid must feel, but he seemed happy enough, and they weren't about to start prying with questions of their own just yet. "So, here we are," Ethen announced as he brought the vehicle to a stop in a small car park.

"Is that the helicopter over there?" Alan said, pointing to a waiting Blackhawk.

"That's the one! I helped the guys replace the blades on it just last week." Ethen said, sounding pleased with himself. "I'm not supposed to get involved, but I love seeing how these machines work," he gushed.

"Are you coming with us?" Jake asked, hearing the motor start as the pilot saw the family approach.

"Oh yeah, I didn't drive here. The Jeep kinda lives here; it's used for shuttle runs mostly. You really don't think I drove that stiff old thing a hundred and forty miles, do ya?" Ethen grinned.

"I guess not," Jake said quietly.

Jake waited until Ethen had chosen a seat before deliberately finding the one next to him as they climbed aboard. Jenny just smiled to herself. She knew exactly what he was up to, but it didn't bother her. She was just glad to see Jake happy, and if that took her son dosing himself up with a touch of shallow flirting, then who was she to intervene?

The helicopter lifted off and tilted forward as it made its way to their final destination, Beale.




Cody was feeling better now that he had slept. He was slowly coming to terms with the fact Jake was really gone. However, it was 6am and still dark outside. His room was cold, as the central heating had long since gone off. He knew he had been dreaming about Jake but couldn't decide if that was what woke him up or the fact his bladder was about to explode. He climbed out of bed and found his bathrobe, quickly putting it on to keep out the cold.

He went to the bathroom and closed the door, turning the light on. Looking in the mirror, he wiped the crusty bits from his sleepy eyes and then approached the toilet. He stood there as his annoying morning wood slowly deflated, allowing him enough flexibility to push the organ down to face the bowl. "Ahhhhh," he sighed as a steady stream of piss went splashing into the water below. He washed his hands and quickly went back to bed to cocoon himself in the warmth he had left. He laid there for a moment before very slowly moving his hands down to his nuts. He realised that he had not taken care of himself since giving Jake the once over in his room. His nuts were tight from the cold, but the contact made his cock inflate quickly as if telling him that it had been too long.

Cody reached down and felt under his bed until he grasped a small bottle of lube. His mother undoubtedly knew that he masturbated, but she didn't really need to see the evidence when she visited the room. Cody was not one of those who had dirty magazines stashed away. Instead, he preferred to use his imagination. This was very handy right now because of his shifting sexual preference. He knew that if he had magazines stashed, they would no doubt be of scantily dressed women, not really what he was into... lately.

As he gently glided his hand up and down his shaft, he closed his eyes and begun to think about Jake, but not just Jake naked, no, this was Jake being manhandled again, up against the wall, his cock hard, his whimpering, his thrusts, his facial expressions, his….

"Ah, shit! Yelped Cody quietly as he spent himself under the covers, spraying his hand, chest, and neck. He ran his fingers through a puddle of it on his chest and watched it hang like jelly before putting it in his mouth. He grimaced quickly swallowed, shuddering. He hoped by tasting his own seed, it might make him think it was Jake's, but the heat of the moment had passed, and the excitement he felt while jacking himself off had obviously gone, too. "Gross!"




Ethen led the Stevens family to a parked SUV just outside the base and begun driving out. "It's about 4 miles out, your house, I mean," he said, looking at Alan. "But you might wanna hold on tight; after we get off the base road, it's mostly desert track." Ethen was not wrong about holding tight. The track was bumpy and very dusty. Jake closed his window as small stones and dirt were being flicked up into the back seat. The road was pitch black, with no street lights as far as the eye could see. "I do this journey almost every day," Ethen said, grinning as he watched them all getting thrown about the car. "Does wonders for your back," he added.

"Yeah, you don't say," replied Alan, frowning and pursing his lips. "Looks like I have it to look forward to."

"Well, as long as you avoid the bigger potholes, it's not too bad. I'm just trying to get you home in good time."

Home, Jake thought on hearing that. It felt like such an alien world right now.

"Would you like to come in for a cup of coffee or something, guys, you know, before you unpack or whatever you're gonna decide to do for the rest of the evening?"

"That would be lovely, Ethen," Jenny spoke, not waiting for anyone else to answer. Her mouth was dry from the desert environment, and she needed a pick me up before doing much else. Jake grinned; he would have said yes himself if his mother had not gotten there first. Any opportunity to spend time with this hunk was not going to be passed up.

"So, will your father be home, Ethen?" Alan asked.

"Naa, he's on assignment today and tomorrow at another base. So when are you due to start, anyway?"

"Two weeks. We need to get settled first - furniture, food and of course, unpacking," Alan replied.

"Well, if you need any help, I am free in the evenings. I don't mind," he announced thoughtfully.

"Thanks, Ethen, that's a very kind offer and one we might take you up on." Jenny smiled as she caught a glimpse of him through the rear-view mirror.

Ethen had to slow the car abruptly as a large boxer dog ran out onto the dirt track in front of the car, barking. "Dolly, shush," he hissed, leaning out of the driver window.

"Dolly?" Jake looked at him inquisitively.

"Yeah," he frowned, looking back at Jake, "she's my dog."

"You have a dog?" Jake said, surprised.

"Yeah," replied Ethen, confused, "Like, don't you keep animals in England, as pets, I mean?"

"Well, yeah, but I never had any," Jake said, dejected somewhat.

"Yes, you did, you had that hamster, Romey, Roysten um…."

"Rover, Mum! I was nine." Ethen just laughed, causing Jake to blush.

"Well, it's still a pet, I guess, but hey, Dolly is friendly, and I'm sure you will like her."

Not as much as I like you, Jake thought, smiling. "Do you take her for walks?" Ethen didn't answer as he pulled into a large gravel driveway and stopped the car. In front was a big foreboding red coloured property, with a large farmhouse style double brown door with the name Timberlog House hanging just above.

"Well, here we are, guys. Oh, and here are your keys and alarm codes, sir. I'll help you get your luggage in, and then I'll head home and put the stove on and boil some water."

"Thank you, Ethen, you have been most kind and generous to us," remarked Jenny, squeezing his arm.

"You're welcome, ma'am, anything I can do to help," replied Ethen, tilting his cap down with his fingers. He then slid round to the car's boot and started hauling the family's luggage out and placing it by the brown door before heading back to his own property.

"What a charming young man," Jenny said, watching him walk away, with Alan regarding him, too.

"Yes, he is. At least we know one of our neighbours is decent. Let's hope they're all like that," Alan replied, taking the keys from his pocket. "Now, I wonder what one does this door," he said, looking at the eight keys on the ring before selecting a random one and trying it in the lock. "Nope, not that one!" He tried another, and this time, it slid in with no problem. "Ah, sweet," he exclaimed as he turned the key.

The door made a typical old 'horror film' creak as it opened. The first thing that hit them was the strong smell of paint and varnish. "Smells weird," Jake said, pinching his nose with his fingers as they all walked in.

"Just the paint, honey, it will soon go," Jenny said, venturing into what looked like the kitchen. It was a big room that amazed Jenny. The kitchen alone was probably as big as the whole ground floor at their old house. In the middle stood a large island work surface with a big white butler's sink with modern tap fittings and one of those jet sprinkler things you see in the posh houses back in the UK. Probably standard here, she thought, glancing at the contraption. Around the edge of the kitchen were more work surfaces, some with glass fronts. It was all dominated by a massive 8 burner gas cooker with stainless steel hood. "Alan is this all…?"

"New?" he said, cutting her off. "Certainly looks like that, but Trevor said it had only been painted."

"It's beautiful, Alan; I love it," Jenny gushed as she ran her hand over the smooth granite surfaces. Then, as they were admiring their new kitchen, there was a knock. Curious, they all wandered to the large wooden door to their new house. Alan opened it, finding Ethen standing in front of him. He was now out of his uniform and had put on a pair of grey sweat pants and a black t-shirt. Jake could not help glancing down and admiring the way Ethen's soft cock pushed out the material at the front of his loose cotton pants ever so slightly.

"Is everything okay? Would you like that coffee now, or I can come back later if you like?" Ethen said, wondering if he was actually disturbing the first tour of their new house.

"No, Ethen, of course not; I'm looking forward to a hot drink." Jenny shifted forward and out into the driveway, signalling the rest of them to follow. She let Ethen take the lead as he led them towards his property, which was set back a little from the rest. "That's the Underwood's house," Ethen said, pointing to a house a little further down the track. "You'll like them; they're cool, Jackie and Trent; they look after me sometimes when my dad is not around. Hey, and Jake, they have two kids, one is the same age as me, his name is Edward, and then there is Luke, he's sixteen. They're cool dudes. I think you'll get along with them," he said, grinning at Jake.

"Cool," replied Jake, wondering if they were as hot at Ethen but hoping that they weren't, so he could let his hormones give Ethen their undivided attention.

"That house over there is where the Garrets live; they have two daughters, Kim and Holly. They're twins, but not identical, both 15. Kim is a little bit wild but nice with it. Their parents are Richard and Sally; nice folks and Richard also works on the base, sir," Ethen said, turning from Jake to Alan.

"And that other house?" Alan asked, pointing to what looked like a rundown secluded property surrounded by trees.

"That's, um….that's where Mr White lives, I don't know his first name, and I don't wanna. He's a mean old drunk who beats his son, Callum and always threatens to shoot us. He's an unemployed layabout who has no time for anything but his liquor. Poor Callum," Ethen finished, shaking his head, "He's such a nice kid, you know, very shy but a good soul." Alan and Jenny looked at each other, horrified that this drunk was beating on his child and nothing had been done about it.

"Where's his mother?" Jenny asked, perplexed, as they reached Ethen's front door.

"Nobody knows, and most are too afraid to ask. They have been in that house for about two years, and nobody has ever seen the man's wife, a bit strange if you ask me, but I don't ask any questions. I'm too scared I'll get my head blown off with his shotgun. The folks around here just leave that house alone, and White too." Ethen replied, putting the key into his lock and walking in. "Please come in," he gestured. "You can follow me through to the sitting room, and I'll bring the coffee."

"Can I, um…give you a hand, Ethen?" Jake asked nervously.

"Sure, Jake," Ethen shrugged. He led Alan and Jenny into the sitting room and told them to take a seat. "Put your feet up, sir, ma'am, my home is your home, and I know you've had a long journey," he said in a friendly manner, smiling a killer smile that was making Jake go weak in one area and hard in another. Alan and Jenny sat down and started to chat about their journey while Ethen took Jake into the kitchen, where water was continuing to boil away. It was a set in typical farmhouse style with lots of thick pine furniture and a lilac colour theme. The floor was made of rough-cut stone lightly buffed to create an almost reflective sheen.

"So Jake, tell me, how old are you?"

"Sixteen, I'm seventeen in four months."

"Cool, I turned seventeen three months ago, so we are almost the same age," he said, grinning. "So, do you like sports?" he asked, trying to settle into a conversation, starting with general everyday questions.

"Well, I played football sometimes, but nothing serious."

"Football, as in soccer?"

Jake Laughed. "Oh yeah, I forget, your football is like our rugby, ain't it, with the big shoulder pads and helmets and stuff."

Ethen grinned back. "Yeah, that's right. I don't care for the sport much, though; it's a bit rough."

"What, for you, I would have thought you'd be well suited to it, with your height and build?" Jake replied, again checking out precisely that.

"Na, I prefer baseball, and hey, maybe we can play catch one day when you're settled. I'll invite Ed and Luke round."

I'd rather have you all to myself, you adorable bastard, "Yeah, that sounds great," Jake replied.

In the sitting room, Alan was standing up, his hands clasped behind his back, looking at the photographs on the wall of Ethen and his parents. It looked like they had some happy times when his mother was alive, he thought. "Jenny?" Alan said, still staring at the photos facing away from her.

"Yeah, honey?" she replied, glancing up at him.

"Is our son hitting on that young man?" He turned around, grinning suggestively. Jenny let out a sharp uncontrolled laugh.

"It's that obvious to you, too?" she replied, composing herself somewhat. Alan turned back to the pictures on the wall and continued speaking in a concentrated tone like a doctor does when examining a patient while still talking to them.

"You know, Jenny, if I didn't know better, I'd say he had a crush on him. Not saying I'm experienced in these things, but he reminds me of myself when I first laid eyes on you all those years ago."

"What do you mean, all those years ago? You make me feel old," she replied, laughing. "Anyway, he's happy, Alan, and if it takes a little crush to make him happy and settled, then who are we to argue."

"Oh no, Jen, don't get me wrong. I don't mind. It's just unless he wants it to become obvious very quickly, he needs to play it cool a bit more."

"Oh, Alan, you're so slick. Is that how you played it with me…cool?" she teased.

"Na, I was like a bull in a china shop." He turned and burst out laughing

"Here you go, sir, ma'am, two cups of pure Columbian." Alan cleared his throat and tried to act serious again.

"Oh, Ethen, thank you, sweetheart, and please call us by our first names." Jenny smiled at him.

"Sorry, ma'am…er, Jenny, you'll get used to that here in the US. I heard it's a bit more informal in the UK, no?"

"It is, yeah, but hey, I guess there will be a lot of adapting to do for us too, as some things we do differently back home, but I'm serious about the first name thing. You really don't have to call us, sir and ma'am. Besides, it makes me feel old," Jenny added, laughing, causing Ethen to smile his million-dollar smile again - Jake melted!

There was silence in the room as they all sipped on their beverages. It was not an awkward silence but enough of one to make Ethen speak again.

"So, is there anything else you would like to know?" he asked, not aiming the question at anyone in particular.

"Yeah, where can we buy food and lots of it?" Jake asked, rubbing his stomach.

"Ah, right, well, there is a store about 5 miles down the track if you head away from the base. It sells all sorts of stuff, really, but it closes at ten; you won't make it now."

"Damn," Jake said.

"Hey, if you're hungry, I can make you something. Pancakes, waffles, eggs, oh, and we have bread if you prefer a sandwich."

"Hmm, Bread sounds good. I never had the first two you mentioned," Jake said, creasing his forehead. Ethen laughed.

"Pancakes and waffles are an American staple, especially topped with syrup. I'll make some for you some time; you don't know what you been missing!" A defeated look came over Jake's face.

"I can't have that sort of thing," he said, looking towards the floor.

"Oh?" Ethen replied, somewhat confused.

"Jake's diabetic, Ethen, so that means no syrup," Jenny piped up, wagging her finger at Jake.

"Oh…oh, I see", Ethen replied quietly. "Well, you don't have to have the syrup, Jake. I'm sure you can sample them with something else," he said, trying to brighten Jake up. "Honey, perhaps?"

"Thanks, Ethen," Jake replied.



The Stevens' and Ethen had settled into a light chat with almost an hour passing quite quickly they all agreed. Ethen had mostly been chatting to Alan about the base and answering some basic questions Alan had, both aware that certain thing could not be asked, nor what Ethen could answer - him not being allowed to know much of what went on in some parts. Jake automatically found his way to the kitchen to wash up his plate and all the cups that had been used leaving them to drain on the sink. Whether this was done to impress Ethen could not be proved but Jenny certainly looked surprised. She'd not seen this odd teenage behaviour before and found it quite disturbing.

Alan stood up. "Anyway, young man, thank you for your hospitality, the food for Jake here, and of course for the ride over here. You have been brilliant. We should be getting back now to try and sort some sleeping arrangements out," he said, holding out his hand to Ethen. They both shook with a nod.

"Yes, thank you, Ethen, you have been too kind to us," Jenny added. Ethen just smiled and showed them to the door.

"Well, if you need a hand with anything, I can let my dad know I'll be helping you, and he'll be cool with that. He knows how hard it is when new personnel arrive here from scratch."

"Thanks, Ethen, we'll bear that in mind. But, first, we need furniture, food, and I need to somehow get hold of a sim card for my cell phone," Alan said, scratching his chin.

"Hey, no worries, you can use that SUV out there; it belongs to the base, but you should be able to use that until you get a car of your own. Just check with the allowance office, and I don't mind coming with you and showing you where all the stores are you need."

Alan snapped his fingers at Ethen. "You know what, that's a great idea, Ethen. I'll give you some extra cash for your troubles. Come by at ten tomorrow morning, and you can come with us down to the stores, I mean if you wanted to."

"Yeah, sounds good, and don't worry about the money, Alan. I'd be glad to lend a hand."

"Nonsense, Ethen, I'd feel like I was taking advantage. Anyway, it's late, and I'm sure you need to sleep. Thanks once again for your help tonight, and we'll see you tomorrow."

"Okay, cool, well, good night, all of you. I hope you sleep okay in your new home." Ethen waited until they were off the driveway before he waved and closed the door. Then, as Alan, Jenny, and Jake arrived back at their new house, they took a good look at it from the outside. "Bigger than I thought I would be," Jenny exclaimed.

"Yeah," Alan replied.

"Ethen seems nice," Jake added. Hearing that from Jake, Jenny and Alan just looked at each other and burst into laughter.

"Yeeeaaah!" they both said at the same time.

"Well, he is!" Jake frowned, bemused as to what his parents found so funny.

Alan let out a sigh and put an arm around his wife and son. "C'mon, let's go inside." and they both nodded.

Their journey was over!

©Copyright 2021 James Matthews; Mark Baker; All Rights Reserved.')
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This story is a 2020 re-release and re-edit. Some parts have been changed and the 2013 story has been kindly re-formatted to third person with substantial input from my good friend Mark Baker.

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Great chapter! Looks like Jake has found a new interest😊. Looking forward to the next chapter!

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Great chapter. I worry for Cody.

But Jake seems to have found himself an interest in Ethan, which has taken his mind off the move.

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7 hours ago, CincyKris said:

The son of an intelligence officer dropping out of school sounds highly unlikely to me.  I'm confused, how is a 17 year old drop-out in the army?  And at his father's base?  This is not how the current U.S. military works.  

He's not technically in the Army, he just helps out at the base doing odd jobs. If we assume that his father is quite high up in the intelligence department on the base then his son would be allowed to do what his father permits. With dropping out of school, we don't know the reasons why, or if his father even knows. Everything is under assumption at the moment. :)

Thanks for the comments CincyKris, Appreciate your feedback. 

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I suspect that there are some personal issues at play for Ethan, time will tell the story.

And now...get ready for some culture shock!

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Ah, sixteen year olds and the galloping hornies!  At least it will keep Jake out of a funk while he gets adjusted to Nevada.  Knowing our author, we're not done with Cody either.

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