Memories Part 1: The Gathering

Sean woke up with his face just inches from Cory’s face. “Ewww … Morning breath!” Sean thought to himself. He had to stifle a giggle as he slowly snuck out of the bed and shuffled to the bathroom to empty his bladder. As he finished he thought to himself ‘Great! It looks like he’s gonna sleep for a bit more; that will give me a chance to take care of something real quick.’ He looked over at Cory sleeping on the bed in the early dawn light, and felt as if his heart would burst from love and pride; his Cory was on his way back. Sean quietly went to his room and fired up the computer after making sure the speakers were off so that nobody was disturbed.

Sean went to his closet while the computer was booting and got out his old laptop. He dug out a patch cable and connected it to the network hub. After both machines were running, he used the laptop to unlock the file he had hidden deep in the main computer, then mapped that file to a drive letter so that he could access it. In no time he found the file he was looking for; and after fifteen minutes of reformatting it so that it looked just right, he printed it out and put it behind the Plexiglas on a plaque he had picked up a while back.

‘I really hope he likes this.’ Sean thought. ‘I’ve waited so long to give it to him.’ With that thought, a single tear ran down his cheek. Sean wiped the tear away, and then wrapped up the frame in some tissue paper. He then closed out the file and put the laptop away. Even though the pass phrase required was virtually unguessable, he did not want to take any chances of someone figuring out how he kept his most private writings and journals hidden.

He then logged into his favorite message boards and caught up on the recent posts. He posted an update to everyone on the happenings of the last 2 days; he figured it was only fair after all the support they had given him over the last year. When he heard his mom moving around, he sat up with a start. “Oh man! I better hurry; I need to get back into the other bedroom before Cory wakes up so I can get this hidden where I want it!” Sean muttered to himself.

Sean shut down the computer. He managed to sneak back into the room without waking Cory, and hid the package in Cory’s underwear drawer. Sean didn’t relax until he was back in the bed. He was pleasantly surprised when Cory rolled over in his sleep and snuggled tightly to him. The feeling of the one person he loved more than anyone else in the world laying so close to him relaxed Sean, and he immediately drifted back to sleep.

About 10:30 Sean awakened with a start to find Cory straddling him, tickling him under the armpits. In between fits of laughter, Sean managed to get out “Cory! Unless you want your butt pressure washed, you better get off of me NOW!” Cory took one look at Sean, then with a huge grin jumped off of the bed and ran to the bathroom. Sean was right on his heels, and the two boys proceeded to try to fill the toilet with the contents of their bladders. As they finished, Sean commented: “We better get some clothes on; I’m gonna grab some clean stuff outta my room, I’ll meet you back here in a few minutes.”

“Okay, bro; I’m betting Mom is wondering where we’re at anyways” Cory replied. “Dang, it feels weird calling her Mom after the last year!”

Sean just smiled. “It may feel weird, but it’s about the best thing I’ve heard in a long time; besides, for you feeling weird should be normal, since you ARE weird!”

Cory slapped Sean’s butt. “I may be weird, but it’s only because I’ve been hanging around YOU and it’s rubbed off on me!”

They giggled and hugged, then separated to their rooms to grab some clothes.

Sean had just finished deciding what he was going to wear when he heard a sound behind him. He turned around to find Cory standing there holding the package he had hidden, still wrapped, with a smile on his face and tears of joy running down his cheeks.

“I found this in my drawer, it says ‘To the number one person in my life, from Sean’.” Cory said in a low voice.

Sean walked over to his bed, and motioned Cory to sit next to him. “Come on over bro, why don’t you open it?”

Cory sat down and proceeded to carefully unwrap the package, making sure he was able to save the wrapping paper. Once he had the paper folded up to save, he looked at what was on the plaque. “Oh my God!” Cory reached over and pulled Sean into a bear hug, the looked back at the plaque in his hands.

The background was a semi-transparent picture of both of them when they were ten. They were standing in the back yard with their arms over each others shoulders, wearing matching Speedos. They both had huge grins on their faces. Superimposed over the top of the picture was a poem:

I sit here, Dream and wonder,
I look into your eyes and fade away.
You tempt me, you lure me,
Your innocence will let me dream today.
Your eyes, they look in beauty,
They send the sense of lovingness.
And they forbid me to look away.
Those eyes, they make me slowly drift away.
Today, is the day,
I’ll never turn my back and walk away.
I’ll tell you, I love you,
I’ll take my chance, in a twist of faith today.
If only, you’ll be mine,
I’ll be with you, until the end of time.

Sean Short May 12, 2004

Sean looked at Cory: “Flip it over bud, please?”

Cory got a puzzled look on his face, and then flipped it over. On the back was hand-written:

For Cory with all my love, August 2004.

I have waited for the day I could give this to you,

You will forever be a part of my heart and soul.

Sean

Cory carefully laid it off to the side, and then looked over to Sean. When he saw the worry in Sean’s eyes, he wrapped his arms around him. “Thank you Sean! It’s beautiful, I’ll treasure it forever. Even though I still don’t remember everything, I know that nobody has ever done anything this special. I love you, it’s the best thing you have ever given me.”

The two boys settled into a loving cuddle. After holding each other for a while, they got up to finish getting ready. “Sean?” asked Cory

“Yeah, Bro?”

“Would you mind if I took this to breakfast and showed Mom? It’s so beautiful I need to show it off.”

Sean blushed. “Sure Cory! It really means a lot to you, don’t it?”

“Of course, silly! How often does the one person you care about the most give you a present that shows how much he really cares.”

“Aww man; you’re gonna make me all mushy. You know, I didn’t really realize how much you really meant to me until I almost lost you. I heard Mom telling Dan that she could tell whenever I had spent time with you; she said it was the only time I was happy. Last night was the first time in a year that I went right to sleep; and it was all because you are finally back home.”

“Now, you’re making me blush!” Cory giggled. “Seriously, usually I have to jog in the morning to clear my head; my head is usually all messed up after I wake up. Not only is this the first time in a while that I didn’t need to run, it’s also the first time I’ve slept in. I didn’t realize it until yesterday, but I need you to feel secure. When I’m with you, I feel good; when you’re not around it feels like somethings missing.”

Sean smiled. “I know what you mean; I’ve been feeling the same way. I’m just glad you’re back, I’m not sure how much longer I could have handled not having you.”

Cory walked over and hugged Sean. “Bro, I’m really sorry for hurting you like this. If anything had happened to you because of my screw-up I woulda died. Sooner or later I would have remembered, and there’s no way I could handle knowing I was the reason you were not around.”

Sean kissed Cory’s cheek. “Don’t worry about it anymore. Dan promised that you would come back to me, and now you’re here. That’s what kept me going, and I learned to care for you more in the process. Who knows, maybe this is something good that’s taking a while to develop.”

Cory giggled. “If this was something good happening, remind me to run if something bad happens!”

Sean joined Cory in his giggles. “You know, when you put it that way you’ve got a point! I won’t have to remind you to run; I’ll be grabbing you and dragging you behind me!”

Cory smiled. “You got a deal! You know, we better get downstairs; Mom’s gonna start wondering what we’re doing.”

Sean smiled. “You might not remember it, but this wouldn’t be the first time she’s wondered what we were doing!”

Both boys headed out the door and headed down the stairs. They walked side-by-side, arms over each others shoulders; just like in the picture on the plaque Cory held tightly in his free hand.

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