It's six months on from our last chapter and things aren't going as smoothly...
Jason Costello sat at the kitchen table with his face in his hands. The apartment was in darkness and an eerie silence crept through the building. He was alone. Jason wanted to cry, but the testosterone that was surging through his body wouldn't let him.
Two days earlier, he and Bart had had a blazing row.....
Bart had confronted Jason about not being upfront with other people about being gay and Jason had laid into him.
''Are you ashamed of who you are, Jase?'' Bart shouted.
''Of course I'm not!'' replied Jason.
''Then why won't you tell anyone that you are gay?" questioned Bart.
''Do you have any idea what it is like for people like me, people who are in the spotlight?''
Jason continued, "If others knew I was transgender, let alone gay, the press would have a field day and my career would probably be over. Star striker or not, I can't take that risk.''
Bart wouldn't let it go.
''Are you ashamed of me then, is that what it is?''
''No, Bart.'' replied Jason. ''But what about you?'' said Jason sharply.
''Eh?'' said Bart puzzled.
''Well, if you are with me then you must be gay. Why don't YOU come out?" shouted Jason.
Jason was both confused and upset about Bart's behaviour towards him. He knew that he shouldn't have said that, but in the heat of the moment he couldn't help himself.
''I'm not gay,'' said Bart.
''How is that possible?'' said Jason, ''If you are with me, a guy, then you ARE gay!'' ''You are the one who is ashamed Bart.''
Bart raised his fist. At that moment, he wanted to hit Jason. But as he was about to throw a punch, he saw the look in Jason's eyes. Bart couldn't do it.
Jason mumbled under his breath, looking at the floor. ''Get out.''
''What?'' replied Bart.
Jason shouted at Bart, ''Just get out, I don't care where you go or what you do, just get out!''
Bart walked out of the apartment. Jason fell to the floor, exhausted, tears starting to stream down his face.
So now Jason sat in the dark. His mind was blank. He hadn't slept or eaten properly for two days. Right at that moment he didn't care about anything. He hadn't been outside the apartment since the row with Bart and had called his Coach with the excuse that he couldn't go to training because he had come down with a virus. he didn't want to do anything. He didn't even know where Bart was and was trying to act like he didn't care.
Jason wandered over to the sink to get a glass of water. Suddenly, without thinking about it, he picked up the knife off the draining board and stood there with it close to his wrist. Jason looked at what he was doing and the knife dropped to the floor. He didn't want to go down that path again. He knew that he needed to get out of the apartment and get some air.
Walking slowly up the beach, Jason felt numb. He could feel the cool air hitting his face, but he felt as though he could have been a million miles away. Stopping for a minute, Jason sat down on the sand, unaware that he was being watched.
Bart stood some distance away, looking at Jason sitting motionless on the sand. Bart had spent the last two nights sleeping rough on the beach. He didn't know what he was going to do. Should he go over there and talk to Jason? Events, however, were about to make his mind up for him.
Jason looked out at the ocean. He felt desperate. What was all this for if he didn't have Bart? His success was worth nothing without him. He hadn't asked for any of this. He didn't ask to be born with a girl's body, he hadn't wanted his family to be torn apart and he didn't ask Bart to come out there. He had wanted to make a clean break of things and now he was completely shattered. Jason reached into his pocket, pulled out his penknife and sat there.
Bart suddenly noticed that something wasn't right. He began to walk over to where Jason was sitting. Jason then slumped to the ground and Bart's walk became a run.
''Jase!'' shouted Bart. Bart fell to the ground at Jason's side, who was now barely conscious. Bart looked at Jason's wrists.
''No, Jase, what have you done.'' shouted Bart, panicked.
Bart began to rip at his shirt and tried his best to tourniquet Jason's wrists with the fabric in a bid to reduce the blood flow.
"Jase, stay with me, please.'' Bart pleaded.
Bart ran to the nearby lifeguard post and explained the situation.
''I need an ambulance quick, my mate's gonna die if we don't get help to him quickly, he'll bleed to death, please hurry.''
Bart ran back to Jason.
Bart held him as he waited for help to arrive.
"Don't you go anywhere without me Jase, you hear me?''
Jason finally fell unconscious.
''Jase?'' Bart's breathing quickened. ''I'm sorry for what I said, please......Jason!"
Bart came to. He didn't know where he was, then he remembered.
Help had got to Jason just in time. He was in a bad way when he reached the hospital, but now, having received the necessary treatment, he was out of danger. Bart hadn't left the hospital since Jason's admittance and he was about to see him for the first time since the incident.
Jason opened his eyes and when he saw Bart, a smile started to form.
"You don't have to say anything, I'll just sit here." said Bart.
"I'm sorry....." Jason said quietly.
"I just want to ask one thing," said Bart ''Why?''
Jason replied, ''To be honest, I don't know. I just couldn't see any future. I keep who I really am hidden from everyone else...and you had gone....so...''
"forget all of what I said before,'' said Bart ''I was being an idiot, 'labels' don't matter, love does.'' Bart continued, ''I nearly lost you back there, I couldn't bear it.''
"Are we OK then?'' asked Jason.
''We are more than OK,'' replied Bart. ''Look, we can talk later. Just rest and I'll be right here when you wake up.''
Bart held Jason's hand as he drifted off to sleep, still with the smile on his face.
To Be Continued.......