Chapter 1

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*AUTHORS NOTE. Hey all! I know I said this would start in mid-September, but I just can't contain it! I'm a little nervous but without further ado...  Enjoy! :)

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Hi, I'm Mitch. 

I like music, junk food, Netflix and video games just like any average teenage boy going into high school. I sound normal, right? Well... That might be because I left out the part that I have been homeschooled my whole entire life. Yeah, I know. You're all wondering why I would put myself through all of that loneliness. Well, it's not like I ever had a choice. My parents are super religious and strict so they think they're "protecting me" from the big-bad world or something like that. My mom is the one I can really talk to but when dad's around she just agrees with everything he says. That's why I waited until dad was at work a few weeks ago when I came out to my mom. It was my birthday when I finally told her. She told me that she already knew I was gay, but had just been waiting for me to say it all by myself. It was a relief the way she reacted, because although she's very religious and strict I learned that she is also even more so gracefully accepting and loving than I once thought. I don't know what I'd do without her. She wants me to tell dad because she says "He will accept you", but I beg to differ. He was against the idea of me taking drama at Martin High this fall no matter how much I begged and told him I loved acting because, and I quote, "I can't have you dressing up in costumes and wearing makeup, Mitchell. Not as the elders son. How do you think Reverend Michaels would feel about that in church on Sunday?"

So how would he feel about me being gay? I can't tell him. Not yet. I don't know how he would react.

Being told I couldn't take drama at Martin High was a bummer because not only would it have been my first chance to experience a public school, but I would have gotten to be with Kirstie. And who is Kirstie? You might ask.

Well you see, there's one thing I love that my dad supports me in and that's church choir, but he doesn't support me wearing show-makeup and costumes for simple plays. When I was as young as 8 and knew nothing about my sexuality, he judged me for being in CATS the musical. It was only a community theatre class my mom put me in because I loved to sing and it would help me make friends and not feel like a loner. And not feel like a loner I did. I met Kirstie there and we have remained best friends to this day, almost 7 years later. I also met a few other people in CATS. Jake, Naomi, Kate, Alexander... I'm not as close to any of them as Kirstie, but it's nice to feel like I have friends.

I text Kirstie every day as she gets out of school and we rotate going over to each other's houses on weekends. It's become our routine and it helps me feel less lonely while also getting to spend time with that amazing girl. I love Kirstie so much. She and I "dated" for a few months back when we were 11, but we were young and just wanted to experiment. That was about a year before I knew I was gay, and when I came out to Kirstie she didn't react negatively at all. I remember it clearly...

*

Kirstie and I sat in my backyard on one of our weekend hangouts having a little "picnic" that consisted of peanut-butter jelly and lemonade, the faint Beyoncé (whom I LOVE) playing in the background.

I swallowed down the growing lump in my throat accompanied by some sandwich. "Kirst, I have something important to tell you and I really hope you still want to be my friend afterwards."

She slowly turns down the volume on my boom box as she stares at me, urging me to continue. When I don't is when she finally speaks up (frantically, might I add) "Mitch! Are you hurt? Moving away?! Please tell me or I'm going to start crying."

She knew I always hated seeing her cry so of course that motivated me enough to blurt out, "I-I'm gay, Kirstin!"

Kirstie's movement ceased and she didn't respond at all. The moment that tears began to form in her eyes is when I knew she would leave me.

"P-p-please don't l-leave me. I know I'm a disappointment but I trusted you and you're the first and only person I wanted to tell and now we-"

"-Mitchell, don't you do that to me. I thought something was wrong! I love you and it doesn't matter what you identify as, it won't change a thing about how I feel towards you. Thank you for letting me be the first to know. I would never leave you. I WILL never leave you, got it?"

I nodded frantically as fesh hot tears streamed down my face. The tears blurred my vision but the next thing I knew,  I was engulfed in a tight hug.

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