Have you ever looked at a picture, perhaps a photo of two guys in a tight hug, or two girls holding hands, and wondered, "What happened before that moment? What will they do next?"
These fifteen stories were inspired by images from the Young Adult LGBT Books Group. In these pages you'll find LGBTQ teenagers living their lives - experiencing first encounters and long relationships, coming out, staying closeted, questioning, loving, having adventures, dealing with family, with prejudice, with magic. Author Kira Harp provides this collection of Young Adult romantic, fantasy and contemporary short stories.
Any author royalties from this book will be donated to The Trevor Project, which provides crisis intervention and resources for LGBTQ youth. (**This book is a free download in ebook everywhere except Amazon, and also available in print.)
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Julio hooked his fingers in the wire. “So, are you off then?”
“Soon.” There were a thousand things I wanted to say. They boiled down to just one. “I don't want to go.”
“I know. We have to be adult about this though.”
He was only a year and a half older than me. I hated when he said stuff like that. “Screw you.”
He grinned, with that heat in his eyes that made my dick hard and my knees weak. “You have.” His lips hardly moved, but I heard those words right inside me. For a moment, all I could see was Julio. I stepped closer, grabbing the fence myself, pretending it was to support my bad leg and not because he made me want to drop to my knees. Our fingers brushed, a bare touch of skin. It was safe enough, two guys, buddies, on either side of seven foot wire mesh... it was dangerous enough to make the whole world stand still. Neither of us moved for a minute.READ MORE
“You have to go.” Julio's voice was low but urgent. “You know that. Your mom married this guy to get this chance for you. College, surgery for your foot, everything you need for your future.”
All I need is you. I couldn't say it. I did say, “I've gotten along with the damned club foot all my life—I walk okay; I don't need to jump and dance.”
“I actually wouldn't mind if you could dance better than the last time.”
We'd been in my room, safely alone, with Julio moving gracefully to the music from my iPod, opening his arms to me. I'd gone to him. We'd swayed together, found a rhythm for a moment, before I'd tripped over my twisted ankle. He'd caught me. Which had led to other things. “I fell on you on purpose.”
“Riiiight, you keep telling yourself that.”
“Anyway, I don't need to go off to some fancy college. I don't need my stepdad's money to be okay.”
“Maybe I want you to be better than okay. Maybe I want you to go to college, 'cause I can't.”
He'd said that before, and it still felt freaking unfair. Do it for me. What about what I wanted? Before Mom met Arne, I'd figured on going to community college and building a life here, with Julio. We'd been together for two years, and no matter what he said, I was nowhere close to getting tired of him. That would never happen. And now everyone in my life was telling me about this great opportunity, about New York surgeons and New York schools and how it would change my life. And all I could see was that it meant leaving Julio behind.
He must have seen the old arguments rising in my eyes, because he moved a little closer to the fence. I could smell his aftershave, and the sharp tang of his sweat. He said, “It's not forever. We'll text and I'll call you. Skype even, if I can find a way. You'll be home for Christmas.” Then he wrecked it by adding, “Just... if you do meet a guy, someone better, tell me. I don't want you to feel guilty. I just want to know.”
“Go to hell,” I snarled. God, I was so mad I could hardly breathe. And yet, that wasn't what I wanted our last words to be...COLLAPSE