One of the few perks of living in royal hell was the private gym. I’d spend hours in there, lifting weights or running on the treadmill. It helped me escape, and it helped me feel better about being stuck in the wrong body.
I was rarely ever bothered while I was in here, and no one ever joined me in my workouts. It was my own little safe-haven. That’s why when the gym door opened and Hawk peeked his head in, it threw me off guard.
“Uh hey Thorn, how’s the work out?” He was nervous and fidgety, he was usually a cautious person but that doesn’t make him a nervous wreck like this.
“Good. Why, what’s up?” I asked, slightly breathless.
“When do you think you’ll be done?” He completely ignored my own question.
“I was just finishing up.” I lied, something was obviously up with him. My workout could wait.
“What’s up dude, you’re acting really strange.”
“I need to talk to you about something, so can you meet me outside by the pool?”
“Uh yeah, I guess. I’ll meet you there in five, I’m gonna change first.” I decided not to question him further, he was obviously going to tell me about whatever was bothering him when we met outside.
“Alright, take your time. No rush.” He fidgeted nervously with the hem of his shirt.
“Noted. I’ll be down in a few.” I smiled at his as he walked out of the room.
I was a little nervous too, after seeing the strange way he was acting. What was he about to tell me? Was he leaving? I knew he wanted to go to college, so maybe it was time for him to start school. Or maybe he was sick or something. A million outcomes flashed through my mind before I realized I should suck it up and get changed.
A few minutes later I was in the backyard staring at Hawk. Did I really know what he wanted to say? I had a horrible feeling in the pit of my stomach and I just couldn’t shake it.
But I didn’t really have a choice to back out here. No matter what, he was going to tell me whatever he had to tell me. There was no point in prolonging it.
“Hey.” I greeted as I approached. He immediately jumped up from the lawn chair and nervously grabbed at his collar.
“So, what do you have to talk to me about?” I thought it’d be best to just get it over with.
“Well, a lot actually. So I’m just going to dive right in.”
“You’ve been my best friend for as long as I can remember. You’ve been there for me and I for you, I can’t imagine a life without you. You make me insanely happy and I can be myself around you.”
“What are you getting at here?”
“Thorn, I think I’m in love with you.”
“Are you fucking kidding me?” I felt the anger bubbling up inside me. I wanted to punch him.
“W-what? No, I wouldn’t joke about something like this.”
“After all this time, I thought you were different. I thought you saw the real me, I thought you understood. I mean, hell, you were the one who convinced me to transition! But you’re just like everyone else, you only see me as a girl.”
“Thorn, it’s not like that at all, I swear. I’ve only ever seen you as a guy, you know that. I like boys. I’m gay, and I think I’m in love with you.”
“How come you never told me this before?” I still didn’t fully believe he liked me as a boy.
“I tried to be with girls, I tried to repress it. I didn’t and still don’t know if you like boys, so I tried to be with girls. But I just couldn’t love them like I love you.” He looked and sounded like he was going to cry.
“You really love me?”
“More than anyone else.”
Caught up in the moment, I pulled Hawk close to me and kissed him. I regretted it almost immediately.
Hawk was my best friend. A relationship between us could ruin everything and I could end up with no one. Besides, I wasn’t even sure if I liked boys. I didn’t know any girls my age, so how do I know I don’t like them?
As suddenly as I pulled him in for a kiss, I pushed him away.
My jaw dropped open and I made an animal like screech, then took off. I couldn’t face this right now.
“Wait, Thorn, come back! I’m sorry!” Hawk yelled after me, but I didn’t turn around. I just flew straight into the castle.
The bench in the courtyard was where I went went I was stressed or confused. It wasn’t exactly private, since it was surrounded by windows, but it was pretty and the small pond was soothing to me.
I didn’t know what to do or what to think. This was all so confusing, I felt like I was going to be sick.
“Thorn?” Hawk’s dad, Grape, sat down on the bench next to me. I really wasn’t in the mood to talk, but I also didn’t want to be rude to the only man who actually treated me like a son.
“Yea?” I responded miserably.
“What happened?” He asked. I debated with myself on whether or not I should tell him. I mean, Hawk was his son after all. This conversation might be awkward. But ultimately, I didn’t really have anyone else to talk to about this. Nutmeg wouldn’t really understand.
“Hawk’s in love with me. He says he sees me as a boy but I’m not sure I believe him. And, I’m not sure I even like boys myself. I’ve never actually met any girls my age and I don’t want to settle for the first person who shows interest in me, y’know?”
“I knew this would come someday. Hawk’s feelings for you have always been apparent to his mom and I. But, I know for a fact my son sees you as a boy. He’s always been your biggest supporter, there’s no way he would change his perception of you just because he has a crush on you.”
“I mean I guess, but I’m not exactly the most masculine guy in the world. It’s pretty easy to see me as a girl, I’ve still got tits after all.”
“Trust me, Hawk doesn’t care about that. He sees the person you really are. But if it really bothers you, we can buy you a chest binder, to make your chest flatter.” He offered.
“You’d do that for me?”
“Of course, you’re like a son to me. I want you to be comfortable. I’ll talk to Nutmeg and we’ll get it sorted out. As for the other part of your problem, I think I can arrange for you to meet some more kids your age.”
“What? How?” I felt like Grape was a fairy godfather or something, here to make all my wishes come true.
“Ginger and Aloe are going out of town next weekend. We’ll have the castle to ourselves. We can have Hawk bring his friends over, that was you can get to know them. That is, if you want that.”
“I’d love that, that sounds awesome.”
“Then it’s settled, when you’re parents are out of town, we’re throwing a party.” He chuckled.
“What a teen-movie cliche.” I laughed with him, then switched into serious mode. “What if they don’t like me? I don’t exactly have the best social skills.”
“How could someone not like you? You’re one of the greatest kids I know. Once they get to know you, they’ll love you.”
“I hope so.” I wrung my hands nervously. Though I was excited about the idea of meeting new people, it was a little frightening as well.
I was just hoping for the best.
A/N: Hey guys, I’m so so sorry I took so long to post, I’ve been sick and I’m back in school, so I’ve been a little busy. But I’m going to try to keep updating regularly, hopefully I can! Thanks so much for reading and I hope you liked the chapter 🙂