One Voice: Book Two
With all of his scratched and dented heart, Nate DeMarco wants to be two places at once, but he’s been forced to make an unbearable choice. Having barely survived high school, Nate and his boyfriends, Casey Minton and Zander Zane, are ready to move forward. Casey and Zander have left home to attend Boston City College. Nate remains in New Hampshire to protect his volatile younger sister from their increasingly violent, alcoholic uncle. Nate suffers with anger, resentment, and loneliness as what he wants battles against what he feels he must do.
Separated, the young men fight to stay in contact. But they are faced with separate issues. Casey copes with residual fear from having been bullied in high school. Zander obsesses over the establishment of One Voice, the gay-straight alliance at Boston City College. And Nate fights for his sister’s survival. Meanwhile, the intensity of the boys’ relationship increases, both sexually and emotionally.
Nate’s effort to live two lives leads to tragedy, which threatens to blast their relationship apart before they can adjust to the changes in their lives. They must find their way back to a united path before it's too late.
US THREE’S all divided up now. Casey and Zander are off to college orientation—where they oughtta be—so that ain’t no problem. And just sayin’, them two wanted me to go with ’em. They said we could get us an apartment, instead of them livin’ in the school dorms. They said I could get myself some trainin’ at the culinary arts school right near Boston City College, where them two are goin’. Said it’d be so fuckin’ great and we could study together every single night and build our future together.
And I wanted to go with ’em so fuckin’ bad I could taste it.
But I couldn’t….
Couldn’t leave my little sister.
Cindy needed me to run interference ’tween her and Uncle Rich since Mom’s still in the slammer. Loudmouthed fourteen-year-old girls and angry boozers needed some kind of a buffer zone in the middle of ’em.
So anyhow, I didn’t fess up to that shit like straight out in the open or nothin’. Kept on tellin’ Casey and Zander I was super into my job pumpin’ fuel at the gas station and I was hopin’ like hell to get promoted up to cashier at the minimart that was attached.
Woo-fuckin’-hoo. Mini-friggin’-mart cashier—my dream job! But sometimes you gotta say what you gotta say.
Casey and Zander never bought my bullcrap story. Every time I told them I was livin’ for the day I could spend 24/7 ringin’ in people’s beer and toilet paper and shit, they always looked at each other and raised up their eyebrows, like “Yeah, right—tell me another one, dude.” They knew the score—they knew I was stickin’ close by Cindy to protect her.
But finally them two had no choice about leavin’ without me, I guess. Wouldn’t change my mind—insisted I was gonna stay home. So off they went to Boston City College—gonna be each other’s roommates in this classy-ass dormitory place. My Casey’s so fuckin’ smart—gonna be a doctor someday, but right now he’s a biology major. And during senior year in high school, Zander got all sappy about helpin’ kids fit in, so he’s studyin’ to be a guidance counselor, which I think is cool cuz guidance counselors have the power to save kids’ asses in high school.
Zander’ll be a kick-ass guidance counselor.
Casey’ll be a top-notch doc.
I’ll be a dumbass gas station attendant. A fuel pumper.
And just sayin’, I know them two love me. I know I love them two.
I just couldn’t go with ’em.
Maybe I’ll take Cindy out to Friendly’s for a burger before I head over to the gas station. Or maybe I’ll just hang here in my room and try to stop missin’ them two so fuckin’ bad.
ZANDER ZANE’S One Voice Blog Spot—by invite only
Your host, Zander Z
[For the official record, nobody’s been admitted to this blog quite yet, but I am thinking about inviting my older bro, Dan, to be my blog guinea pig. He’s so cool, and it’d be a way for us to keep in touch. Plus he could write shit in the comments section so it wouldn’t be blank, which fucks with my mind.]
MONDAY AUGUST 22
There are three of us in this thing. Yeah, three… no questions asked.
It just plain wouldn’t work without me, Casey, and Nate.
And maybe all three of us are dudes… and maybe we’re all three in love.
Alert: Stop reading here if you can’t open your mind to those facts.
Or better yet, read on.
I challenge you not to change your mind when you see how it is with the three of us.
Casey and I are making tracks to the bookstore when he gets out of the shower. Gotta buy books so we can study our butts off, right? Hate for Casey to study his butt off, it’s so freaking cute. LOL.
Gotta try to get my mind, and Casey’s mind too, off Nate and what he’s doing by himself back in our hometown in the sticks of New Hampshire.
Miss the fuck outta him.
CASEY’S REAL LIFE
BY THE middle of senior year at Benjamin Franklin High School, just about everybody at school had figured out our not-so-secret love alliance. In addition, our parents had developed a fairly clear picture of what we were to each other. My parents were basically fine with it, which seemed unlikely, but considering the alternative, their son being in love with two guys was the best option available. They had watched as Nate and Zander literally lifted me out of a deep pit of depression in the middle of my junior year after I’d been bullied, both mentally and physically, beyond the limits of my endurance by the popular girls. Or as I called my tormenters, “the Queen Bees.” I’m reasonably certain that Mom and Dad had experienced the normal reservations in regards to their son’s threesome love relationship, but instead of making waves, I believe they chose to consider Zander and Nate as bonus sons. As for Zander’s mother, she didn’t much care what Zander was up to as long as he steered clear of trouble and got decent grades, so she didn’t factor in as a big issue for us. Nate’s uncle was the only “guardian” of one of us—and I used that term very loosely when it came to him—who didn’t have a clue about the charmingly romantic “throuple”—a combination of three and couple—in which we were involved. But that was a story in itself. Suffice it to say, what Uncle Rich didn’t know wouldn’t hurt Nate.
The three of us had basically been inseparable for the past year and a half. Every day since the winter of junior year in high school, we sat together in classes and at lunch and drove to school together and then back home as well, when Zander and I didn’t have after-school activities. Nate didn’t participate in extracurriculars, except for the gay-straight alliance at our school, called One Voice, which he and Zander founded in an effort to support me and other LGBTQ kids at school during junior year. If we didn’t have sports or clubs, he usually just dropped us off at home and went straight to work at the Humane Society, where he helped out with the dogs.
The summer before our senior year was like an amazing dream—a time in my life I’ll certainly never forget. The three of us were completely infatuated with each other, and we had sufficient time to spend together. Zander and I had part-time jobs at the mall—Zander at the movie theater and me at Abercrombie & Fitch—and we managed to work our hours around Nate’s schedule. That was the summer when he started working at the gas station and at the Humane Society so he could buy better quality food and clothing for his little sister, Cindy. But we managed to see each other almost every day. And every single day of that summer we all fell a little bit more in love.
Senior year. I was happy at school for the first time ever. School was fun, and I actually wanted to go. I loved getting up every day, climbing into Nate’s truck, kissing my boyfriends good morning, and then heading for the very place I used to refer to as “hell on earth.” And no, we never officially “came out” as being gay or as being three boyfriends, because I didn’t want to, and Nate and Zander respected my wishes. I’d been through a lot during my junior year. I’d been humiliated, not to mention assaulted, for being gay, as well as for being nerdy and different. Residual fear remained in my head and heart. I wasn’t willing to expose myself to that kind of scrutiny.
At least not until the senior prom. The three of us went stag. Well, we went “alone-together,” as Nate said. Nate and Zander told me they would wear color-coordinated tuxedos, with the single condition that I’d let them dance with me in public. As in the three of us shaking our groove things together. Our “big secret” was out on June seventh. Strange thing was, nobody, not even the teachers, appeared to be particularly shocked by the revelation that we belonged to a loving threesome, or a throuple.
Although Nate had a presence like a bodyguard, I give much of the credit for my feeling of safety at school to Zander and his obsession with the club he started, with Nate’s help. One Voice, our school’s gay-straight alliance. The existence of One Voice, and the fact that nearly two-thirds of the student population at BFHS had joined, made our school a kinder and gentler place.
Plus there was the fact that Liz Trainer, the girl who had assaulted me so viciously, had been shipped off to a private boarding school way up the northern part of the state. From what my parents had been told by the school’s lawyers, she was still dealing with the legal ramifications of her violent actions.
I felt relatively safe at Boston City College too, but it was just Freshman Orientation Week, so I was still being cautious. I wasn’t running around waving a rainbow flag or carrying a sign that read, “Polyamory: Love Multiplied,” but I was comfortable enough to hold Zander’s hand as we walked across the quad and to admit he was my boyfriend when asked directly. But it just didn’t feel right without Nate. I missed his strong, silent presence. I missed the way—with his hesitant and inarticulate mumblings—he expressed his love so very eloquently to Zander and me.
I was still trying to hide who I was in terms of my sexuality to some extent, but I would stop hiding if it meant I could walk through the quad with one hand in Zander’s and the other in Nate’s.
I’d take the risk. For Zander and Nate, I would.
ZANDER ZANE’S One Voice Blog Spot—by invite only—not yet for public consumption.
My main goal in starting up a gay-straight alliance at Boston City College is to make our school community a safer place for everybody—no matter what your sexual orientation or gender identity. To make it so Casey and me can walk through the cafeteria arm in arm and nobody bats an eyelash. And to make Anna and Claire, two girls I met in the almost endless line signing up for Ethics in Education class, able to feel welcome to go to the Freshman Fall Ball as a couple. To stop name calling on the sports fields, and to cut out the use of terms like “faggot” and “bean flicker” and “fudge packer” in regular life, by showing the whole school community how much they sting.
That’s a lot to spit out, but it’s exactly how I see it.
At BCC I want to take things one step further than I did at Benjamin Franklin High. See, my biggest goal is to encourage a “live and let live” attitude toward any type of love relationship that is legal. Can’t forget to mention the legal part—it’s big-time important. I’m not promoting relationships between adults and minors or any shit like that. What I mean is, if there are three or four (or more) people who want to be together in a romantic relationship, who the fuck cares?
If it works for you and it works for your partner(s), then be my guest.
This directly applies to our “throuple,” or so Casey calls it. FYI, as defined by Urbandictionary.com, a throuple is “a threelationship.” That is a cute play on words, but it’s actually a real fitting expression. A throuple is a relationship with three players—three loving, caring, committed, sexually active participants. And when I say sexually active, I mean only with each other, which is kinda important. I want “us three,” as Nate calls our cozy group, to have all the rights and recognitions of other people’s love relationships. I wanna be able to sit between them at a Daughtry concert, one hand gripping Nate’s big palm and my other hand rubbing on Casey’s knee, as we listen to “Waiting for Superman.” I wanna be able to take my guys out to the Village Pancake House for breakfast after a night of holding them in my arms, cut off bites of my cinnamon-maple-apple pancakes, and feed them, one by one, with my own fork—and not have it be a big fucking deal.
I held the first One Voice meeting in a physics classroom in the Ledyard Building this morning, as classes haven’t started yet. Yeah, One Voice officially opened its rainbow-colored doors on August twenty-third. Yesterday, Casey and I pretty much plastered the campus with flyers advertising the first meeting, and still all I got was nine people—just freshmen and a few upperclassmen who were at school early to help with orientation and registration—and that number included Casey and me. But you gotta start somewhere, and this is where One Voice starts.
Mia Kerick has written a story that is full of heartbreak, beauty, and hope. Here Without You is a continuation of Zander, Casey, and Nate's story. Zander and Casey have gone to college while Nate has stayed behind in order to make sure his younger sister is safe from their abusive uncle.
What I loved:
*Mia Kerick's writing. She's got such a poetic and melancholy way of writing, it never fails to draw me in.
*Nate, Casey, and Zander. Love them individually and together.
*Just like in book one, we got all three points of view.
*This book was pretty freakin' hot. The boys are growing up...
*The author did an outstanding job with their relationship. Showing us the difficulties of holding a long distance relationship, the work that it takes to keep a relationship together. There was never any doubt that these three loved each other.
What I didn't love:
*Cindy. She really got on my last nerve. I tried talking to myself, making excuses for her, but in the end she still left me with a sour taste in my mouth.
Although this book was at times difficult to read, I am so glad I did. It is a true story of love. This book made me fall even more in love with these three boys- I should say men-, and I'm hoping there will be a book 3 focusing on Zander. 5 Stars ?
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