Searching for Him (by Grant Bentley)

Searching for Him

by Grant Bentley

If any nice person, nasty person, place, event, happening, thing, or sport, seems familiar, it is purely coincidental.

When you’re searching for that special him and your ‘gaydar’
doesn’t work worth sh** — well, you just never know.

I guess if we can start celebrating Christmas in October we can start celebrating Valentine’s Day in January. Anyway at school that’s exactly what we were doing. I mean Valentine’s Day was a whole month away and the poster for the dance had already been up for week. For crap sakes, they were already putting decorations up in the hallways, and even taping stupid hearts on each other’s lockers. All I could think of was, ‘come on people, seriously?’

But then again I had no reason to celebrate. You see there was no him in my life. I won’t say I was feeling desperate, but like, if only I could find a him, but a him who? I didn’t know. Hell I couldn't even picture him. Well okay, there was a him or two in my dreams. But even so, how the hell was I to know he wouldn’t try to kick my ass if he found out I liked him? It’s not like I have friggin’ gaydar that works worth shit.

And yeah, yeah, my name is Zac and I want a him. So yeah, I’m gay… and it was gonna be stupid Valentines in a month… and I was lonely. And all I knew was I desperately… oh damn, there I said it… wanted to find a him to celebrate it with.

“Don’t be so down on yourself sweetie, you’ll meet someone,” Mom told me over breakfast one morning.

And yeah, my folks know. Actually I think they knew before I did. And yeah, we talk about shit most guys would never talk to their folks about. It’s actually kinda weird, but kinda nice too.

“I'd kinda like it to happen soon Mom, like today or tomorrow. I mean it’s Valentine’s Day next month and I’ve got nobody.” I said, “And anyhow, if I do meet someone I like, how am I supposed to figure out if he’s gay, never mind if he likes me?”

“Doesn’t the school have a GSA or some sort of gay club?” she asked.

I had no idea.

But guess what, when I got to school that morning, right there on the bulletin board next to the front entrance was a poster, a GSA poster. It was right next to the gigantic Valentine’s Day poster, but about a tenth as big. And guess what, they had meetings every Thursday right after school.

And yeah, yeah, yeah, okay, so I never read the bulletin board messages. But then I never gave a crap about the next volleyball, football, or basketball game, or the chess club, or the school chorus rehearsals, or the cheerleaders’ practice… or yeah, yeah, whatever other stupid crap meeting they had going on. And yeah okay, I can’t help it if I’m one of those quiet, studious, mind your own business, lonely, nerdy boys.

That doesn’t mean I don’t have friends though. Well okay, people who sit at the same table I do to eat lunch. But we talk. I mean I talk to them and they talk to me.

So anyway, speaking of that, and after giving it some serious thought, I decided it was time to make some changes and hopefully not get my ass kicked in the process.

So at lunch, between, math sucks, Ms. Granville is a bitch, and Misty’s got the hots for Kyle, I announced, “I'm going to the GSA meeting tomorrow after school.”

“You’re gay?” Scotty asked.

“Uh, yeah,” I replied, “And I’m thinking it’s kinda maybe time I climbed out from under my rock and met some someones I can relate to.”

“Cool,” he stated with a grin.

“How do you know?” was Cheryl’s response.

“How do I know what? That I’m gay? I just know. Like how do you know you're not?” I responded, wondering why she would ask a stupid question like that.

“Cause she likes playing with dicks, and I don’t mean guys named Dick,” Jon said laughing.

“And apparently Zac does too,” Sharon added, laughing as well.

“I don’t play with dicks,” Cheryl retorted.

“Oh okay, what do you do with them then?” Jon questioned.

“Twat!” was her rather loud response as she threw the last bite of her sandwich at him.

“So are you out to everyone?” Sharon quickly asked in an attempt to prevent a full-scale food war.

“Actually, besides my folks, you guys are the first to know,” I replied.

“Hey cool, thanks for trusting us Zac,” Scotty said with a smile.

We then drifted off into the usual idle chatter until the bell sounded for bitch Ms. Granville’s math class. Of course we covered several interesting topics, like how exciting it was that the Valentine’s Day dance was coming up in a few weeks.

I guess my being gay didn't matter anymore than my being a nerd.

And then it was Thursday, GSA day, and as casually as possible, I walked from my locker towards the meeting room. As I turned the corner down hallway 2, something that I definitely wasn’t expecting happened. Someone was suddenly walking beside me. That someone was Scotty. He didn’t say anything. I didn’t say anything. We just walked down the hall and into the room together.

It was a quiet meeting, just a kind of general discussion. They touched on shit-for-brains bullies and talked a lot about how to support each other. Lots of the guys and girls contributed to the conversation. I didn’t. I was a bit shy, not that I’m not always a bit shy, but I hardly knew anyone and this was my first time kinda actually being out to a group of people I didn’t know.

After the meeting I gave Scotty a wave and had to smile. I’d mentioned that I was going to the meeting to maybe meet other gay guys, and apparently I’d been sitting across the lunch table from one I rather liked for a couple of years. So yeah, I was right, my gaydar didn’t work worth shit.

About half an hour after I got home I was just laying on my bed day dreaming and thinking of the possibilities when my phone rang. Scotty had been a possibility off and on for a while now, and thinking of the possibilities had just become more interesting.

 When I answered it, a quiet voice said, “Hi, it's Scotty. You got anything going on?”

“Not even close, I’m just sitting in my room vegetating,” I replied.

“Ya wanna get together, I can be there in like about ten minutes,” he said.

“Yeah, for sure,” I said, immediately becoming quite intrigued with the possibilities. I mean I didn’t even know he knew where I lived.

I went out and waited on the front step. I felt kinda weird as he came flying down the street on his bike. We’d never even said hi to each other besides at the lunch table, so it seemed like stuff between us had just become kinda different. And since he was one of my favourite possibilities, and he was riding like his life depended on it, I guess maybe there was no ‘seemed’ about it.

“Thanks,” he said as he hopped off his bike.

“What for?”

“For what you did for me today. I don't know anyone gay, well I know you but I didn’t know, you know? And then knowing, and knowing you’d be at the meeting made me brave enough to actually go. I mean I’ve thought about it lots but never had the balls to do it.”

“Well, you helped me too. It felt good to have you there. But you’re welcome.”



“This gay stuff.”


“Does it kinda scare you?”

“It did for a while.”

“What changed?”

“Well, it’s kinda taken a while. I guess I got to thinking there’s always going to be scary shit we have to deal with, but so does everyone I guess, gay or straight. Then when Mom and Dad gave me their full support, that helped big time. And then, I dunno, I guess I just got tired of feeling lonely and figured, if I want a life, I need to be me.”

“I know how that lonely shit feels. I haven’t told anybody. Well I guess I kinda did this afternoon. Ha ha.”

“Yeah well, except for mom and dad, I just came out today too, and I’m feeling better already.”

“Yeah me too. I know this is gonna sound kinda weird, but when you said you were going to the meeting it was like I felt lighter or something, I dunno. It was like I know someone else who’s gay, and not just a someone, but a friend someone. It was kinda like, yeah, I’m not alone.”

After chatting for a few minutes, I gave him a poke and said, “Hey, let’s go up to my room, I have something I want to show you.”

He just grinned, poked me back, and responded, “I’ve already seen it in the showers.”

“Not that dipshit. I got some great stuff on coming out you might like to read.”

“Oh okay, stuff to read, uh sure… I mean, yeah, yeah, I’d love to read some coming out stuff.”

He called his mom to let her know he’d be late getting home, and before we knew it we were munching on cookies and looking at some of the stories I’d found. And yeah okay we were sitting kinda close. I mean my laptop screen’s not exactly big. And as we read and talked, and time progressed, we seemed to get a bit closer. Then for whatever reason, we both turned our heads, and after staring into each other’s eyes for like forever, I felt his lips touch mine. And they kinda lingered there for a while.

When we both finally started breathing again, he asked, “Do you have any idea how long I’ve wanted to do that?”

“I have no idea,” I replied, “but you did it very well.”

Needless to say we didn’t do much reading after that. We did do some talking, and for the most part we did behave ourselves. 

And needless to say we got together just a bit more often than just at school at lunch breaks. Then three weeks or so later, during one said lunch break, Kyle came up and joined us for a minute or so before he and Misty wandered off.

“He’s so totally hot,” Cheryl stated.

“But he doesn't seem very bright,” Jon commented.

“That’s not why she likes him,” Gary said laughing.

“So you’d actually like a guy like that?” I asked Cheryl.

“Actually no. I want a cute little sassy one just like you,” she replied laughing.

“Seriously, like Zac?” Jon asked grinning at me.

“Seriously,” she replied.

“Well sorry,” I said laughing.

“Yeah I know. Oh well,” she said.

Then she turned to Scotty. “You’re kinda cute and sassy, how about you, Scotty? Wanna be my date for the Valentine’s dance?”

He looked at me for a few seconds and replied, “As breathtakingly beautiful as you are Cheryl, I'm sorry but I’m taken.”

Now this was quiet little loner nerd Scotty who hardly talked to anyone, so everyone looked totally surprised.

“You're shitting me? I haven’t seen you drooling over anyone, ever,” Cheryl said kinda puzzled.

“I don’t drool,” he said grinning.

“So…?” she questioned.

“So… what?” he asked

“Don’t be a dick, dickwad,” she retorted, “So…?”

“Oh you want to know who I’m with?” he asked with a grin.

“Well yeah,” she replied, “So who’re you with?”

“Like seriously?” he questioned.

“Okay, I’m gonna kick your little ass if you don’t tell us in like ten seconds,” she threatened, “Who?”

“Zac,” he said grinning, “And he won’t like it if you damage my little ass.”

“What?” was the simultaneous group response.

“I’m with Zac,” he said.

“So, you’re...” Jon was almost able to ask, as he stared at Scotty.

“With sassy little me,” I stated.

“Fuck me!” Sharon exclaimed when she stopped chocking on the soda she was about to swallow.

“No thanks,” Scotty said, as he did a reasonably good job at faking gagging.

“Oh my God,” Jon finally managed, “Fuck! You two are together? Wait. Yeah. That’s just too cool. Yeah.”

"Yeah, no shit,” Gary said as he reached over and gave Scotty a pat on the back.

“Aww, how sweet,” was Cheryl’s response.

“You two are a right pair of assholes. You couldn’t have told us? I mean like who woulda guessed, holy shit,” Sharon stated looking back and forth between the two of us. “…and yeah, I'm like happy for you guys. Like totally.”

It was at that point we realized we had five minutes of break left and no one had really started eating yet. Suddenly food became more important than either Scotty, or me, or our relationship, or basically anything else.

Later that evening, as Scotty and I lay cuddled up on my bed, the subject of coming out to his mom came up. He wasn’t scared to death about coming out to her, but he was definitely nervous about it. After talking about it for a while, we decided that since Wednesday was her birthday, we’d give her something to remember, a big bouquet of her favourite flowers… and me. Scotty chuckled as he mentioned that maybe Sharon was right, maybe we were a pair of assholes.

So anyway, Wednesday quickly rolled around, Scotty came over after school, and we made our way over to the florists. He bought a huge bouquet of carnations and we headed over to his place. When we got to their back door, he hesitated, gave me the ‘please make this be okay’ look, and we walked into the kitchen.

Keep in mind, having guys over to visit or just hang out never happened with Scotty, and now he was standing in the kitchen, in front of his mom, on her birthday, with a huge bouquet of flowers, and me standing right by his side, the back of my hand brushing the back of his.

“Happy Birthday,” he said as he stepped forward, handed her the flowers and leaned over to give her a kiss on the cheek.

“Thanks honey, they’re beautiful,” she said as she gave him a big hug and returned his kiss on the cheek.

The whole time however, it seemed like she never took her eyes off me, and I gotta say it felt way kinda creepy.

Then, with flowers in hand, she came over, gave me a hug, and as she glanced at Scotty for a second, said, “Hi Zac, it’s nice to finally meet you.”

Nice to finally meet me? I didn’t know she knew I existed. I don’t think Scotty did either. We just kinda stared at each other as the flowers went into a vase and cookies and glasses of milk were put on the table. Scotty got another big hug and kiss on the cheek, and we sat down.

“I sometimes wondered if you were for real,” she said looking at me, and then at Scotty, grinning.

“Excuse me?” I asked.

Then she patted Scotty on the cheek and, with a bit of a laugh, said, “He’s even cuter in person than in your drawings.”

Okay, could Scotty have turned any redder? No he couldn’t, and he just stared at her as a couple of tears appeared and ran down his cheeks.

Then after a few seconds he asked, “You saw them?”

“Of course. You can’t leave your drawing pad on your desk and expect me not to look at it. Moms are far too curious for that sweetheart,” she replied.

“So you know?” he asked.

“Yes honey, I know,” she answered, “And I think you’re perfect, you’ve always been perfect, I love you to pieces, and I always will… and he is kinda cute.”

“Drawing pad?” I questioned.

“Oh god no,” he responded, “You really don’t want to see that. It’s way too embarrassing.”

“Why? It’s just some drawings, right? Besides I want to see how talented you are. Hell, I didn’t even know you could draw.”

“No, please,” he almost begged, “I’ll never live it down if you do,”

“I won’t make a big deal of it, or tease you, or give you a hard time, I promise,” I told him.

“Come on honey,” his mom said, “You’re drawings are wonderful.”

“But Mom,” he begged.

“Honey, trust me,” she stated, “Zac will love them.”

It took a while but we did finally convince him to go and get it. There were tears in his eyes as he handed it to me. I immediately moved my chair so I was sitting beside him. I wiped away his tears, put an arm around him, set the pad on the table, and opened it to page one.

It was me.

It was amazing and it was dated to the day before Valentine’s Day, exactly two years ago. I had to smile, as I gave him a quick kiss on the cheek. It seems he’d been waiting for two years to give me that first kiss.   

As I turned page, after page, after page… of me, I don’t know how to describe exactly how I felt. I mean, I felt flattered, but at the same time humbled. This wasn’t just showing his amazing talent, or his amazing eye for detail, but love jumped out of every page. I could actually feel it. As I closed the book I gave him a big hug and an even bigger kiss… and not on the cheek this time.

His mom laughed and told us to get room. When he gave her his most evil grin, looked down the hall, and said okay… well let’s just say she changed her mind real quick.

That aside, as I held him and looked into his eyes, I knew I had found the him I’d been dreaming of, the him I at one time couldn’t picture. I realized that yes, now that I could not only picture him, but actually see him, and gaze into those mesmerizingly bright blue eyes of his, I couldn’t help but fully, totally, absolutely, without doubt, love him to bits.

And oh sorry, I guess I got a little carried away there. I almost forgot it wasn’t just Scotty’s mom’s birthday, but Valentine’s Day too, and the Valentine’s dance was Friday. And for once I wouldn’t be sitting at home alone daydreaming and thinking of the possibilities. I would be going to the dance with a real live actual date, and the love of my life… my boyfriend… yeah, my boyfriend… Scotty.

And yeah, my nerdy little self had now officially decided he loved Valentine’s Day, dopey hallway decorations, hearts stuck on locker doors, and all. And yeah, he never thought he’d actually say this, but “Happy Valentine’s Day.”


Thanks to Colin for editing, prepping, and posting this story for me.

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This story may contain occasional references to minors who are or may be gay. If it were a movie, it would be rated PG13 (in a more enlightened time it would be rated G). If reading this type of material is illegal where you live, or if you are too young to read this type of material based on the laws where you live, or if your parents don't want you to read this type of material, or if you find this type of material morally or otherwise objectionable, or if you don't want to be here, close your browser now. The author neither condones nor advocates the violation of any laws. If you want to be here, but aren't supposed to be here, be careful and don't get caught!