Suddenly, holding Parker’s hand in public not only began to feel normal...but it brought on a feeling of true pride for me. It’s moments like this that really makes me question what the hell the big deal is when it comes to two boys just showing a little bit of affection for one another. It’s seems so silly to me most times, and yet I allow the prying eyes of strangers shame me into keeping it some big secret. But WHY though??? I just wish that I could understand why I feel like I need to be a part of the deception by pretending that boys like me and Parker don’t exist. As though we’re not a part of this world just like everybody else. I mean...obviously we are. We’re both living proof of that. I don’t know...life is grand, but society is fucked up. How hard is it to just leave us the fuck ALONE, you know?
As Ally and her friends were practically skipping their way towards the anchor at the end of Navy Pier, Parker and I couldn’t help but to giggle at one another. I guess after living here for my entire life, and Parker having paid a few visits himself since he moved to town, we’ve kind of trained ourselves to take the spectacle of it all for granted.
Ally, the most talkative of the bunch, was grinning from ear to ear. Saying, “You too are so cute! I mean it! I can’t even stand it! Look, Morgan...they’re holding hands!”
This caused them to all melt and wiggle and sigh in unison. Weird...all of that earlier paranoia, and it seemed like such a little thing now. Our fondness for one another. Jessica was quick to take her phone and step in front of us and take a selfie with us in the background. Hehehe, it seemed like it was more about her than either one of us, but we smiled and joined in the fun regardless.
“You guys are just like another Taryn and Justin! I swear!” Ally said. “Am I right? Look at them. Did you guys meet out here?”
“No, actually.” Parker told her. “We were out to buy the new movie display at the same time, and we just kinda, like...ran into each other, I guess.”
Brianna said, “Sounds like fate to me. Maybe there’s a vampire scripture out there somewhere with you two in it.”
“Omigod, how cool would that be?” Ally squealed. “This is so amazing, isn’t it? You guys just made our trip out here so much more epic. I’m, like, shaking right now.”
I said, “You guys traveled all the way from Toronto just to see the anchor at the end of the Pier? Wow...”
“Well, not necessarily. Me and Anna are actually here for my uncle’s third wedding. He moved here about a year ago.”
“Third wedding?” Parker grinned.
“Trust me, you don’t know my uncle. He can be a bit hard to deal with. The very fact that he had a first wedding boggles the mind. He’s what my mom would call a serious handful. BUT, I get to come to Chicago! And once I told my besties here, they started saving up to come with me. So we’re sort of planned out a route to take a ‘Gone From Daylight’ tour of the city. Well, all of the places that we could figure out addresses for, anyway.” She said. “I think our next step is Buckingham Fountain, and then that Dennis’ Place For Games arcade where Justin sees Chad for the first time...we just have to figure out how to get to Belmont Street.”
Parker told her, “You can get to Belmont easily on the train, but Dennis’ isn’t there anymore.”
“What? Oh no! Awwww! Jessica, did you hear him? No more Dennis’.”
“Are you serious?” Jessica said.
Parker shrugged. “Sorry. I hate to say it, but arcades aren’t really, like, a big thing anymore. They’re pretty much all gone.”
“Damn...” Ally said with a pouty lip. “Jessica wanted to go in there and see if they had the GFD fighting game so she could take on some serious competition. She kicks ASS in that game. Plus, Chad is one of her favorite characters.”
“I don’t know. Kevin here is pretty damn good himself at that game. He knocked me around a couple of times. I’m sure he could take your girl on for a few rounds. Easy.” Parker said, looking back at me and smiling for a moment before leaning in to give me a kiss on the cheek. I couldn’t believe how much this felt like a fairy tale come to life. I was giddy from the sensation of being around other people who shared our fandom, our obsession, and accepted us for everything that we were and ever could be. It was truly a whole new experience for me. Maybe for both of us. And was I blushing now? I’m definitely blushing now!
“Ooooh...I think I hear an online challenge brewing, Jessica!” Brianna giggled.
“Psh! Whatever. We’ll see.” She replied. “At least it won’t be face to face. I hate to see boys cry from defeat and a total loss of their pride.” We all snickered in response, but I’m thinking that I might have to get her gamer info so Parker can get together and see what she’s made of. That might be fun.
Ally took her notebook out of her backpack and opened it up to scratch their visit to Dennis’ off of the list. “Ok, so I guess we missed out on the arcade part of our GFD journey...but we can just stick around the fountain for a bit longer. And then...the main event!” All of them seemed to practically dance with excitement when she said that. “Are you guys going too? We should all go together!”
Parker and I looked at one another, completely lost as to what she was talking about. I was like, “Going where? What main event?”
“Omigod! You didn’t hear? There are posters and announcements everywhere online! The actors from the movie, Julian Clarke and Adam Turner are going to be at the AMC theater this weekend! Signing autographs, having a Q & A, and they’re gonna debut the full official trailer for “GFD: Ressurection” live! How can you not know about this already?”
“Wait, wait...what are you talking about?” I asked.
Parker then added, “What official trailer? Kevin and I just saw the new trailer a while ago.”
“That was the TEASER!” Ally said. “This is, like...a full trailer. New footage and everything. All the ‘Day-Hard’ fans are drooling all over themselves waiting to check it out. Omigod, you two HAVE to come with us now! It’s, like..and order or whatever!”
Have Parker and I been so involved with one another that we missed out on hearing about something this tremendous? How are the main actors from the movie coming to one of our major downtown theaters for an extended amount of time to take pictures with fans and sign autographs...and we don’t know anything about it? Dammit! To say that this was unexpected would be a severe understatement. Thank God Parker was wearing his GFD T-shirt and the girls spotted it, or we would have been banging our heads against a wall with anger and regret for having missed out on such a monumentally awesome event like this.
“Jesus...” I mumbled.
Parker turned to me and asked, “Did you hear about this?”
“NO! I swear! You’re pretty much the only person that I would have told about it if I had!”
“Do you, like...I mean, you wanna go?”
“Hell YEAH, I wanna go!” I said, my thoughts briefly entertaining the thought of me being able to see Julian Clarke in real life and having someone take our picture while hugging him around the waist. Oh man, they’re going to have to call security to drag me out of there once I get my hands on that boy. Hahaha!
“Me too!” Parker said. “Whoah...you know what we should do? We should bring our cardboard cut outs and have them autographed! How crazy would that be?”
I hadn’t even thought of that, and my jaw dropped. “Not only would they be rare...but they’d be signed by the actual actors too! That’s a great idea!”
Ally jumped up and giggled out loud, grabbing her phone. “SWEET! Give me your info, you guys! We’ll call you as soon as we get the details!”
“Me too!” Morgan said, and we started exchanging numbers and contact stuff before we started walking again. “We’ve gotta get there pretty early, because they’re only going to be around for a few hours. But we mostly want a good standing spot to see the new trailer, and room to jump around like a bunch of maniacs if necessary. Hehehe!”
“Are we really doing this?” Parker asked me with a big smile on his face.
I blushed deeply and said, “I think we are. We’re actually going to see them in person! Like...we’ll be close enough to reach out and touch them if we want to!”
“I definitely want to!” He giggled, and my expression changed to one of shock.
“Or maybe NOT! How about that?” I gave him a little shove, but he already knew what was on my mind.
“Don’t you dare stand there and tell me that you weren’t standing there entertaining your Julian Clarke boy fantasy.”
“That’s none of your business. Hehehe!”
“Riiiiight...” He said. “Just know...if you try to keep me away from Adam Turner, I will fight you, Kevin. Like, I will knuckle up and get blood all over my hands before I let you come between us.”
“Hahaha! Jesus, Parker! Violent much?”
Just then, Ally began getting all animated and happy, and her friends joined her in celebration. “Omigod...there it is! It’s the anchor! Whoah, it’s a lot bigger than I thought it would be! C’mon, you guys! Let’s go! I need, like, a hundred pictures in front of it!”
Brianna said, “No wonder an entire boy could hide behind it. Oh, and this must be the railing the story was talking about. The waves of the lake are, like, right there! Oh wow! It’s just like I pictured it!”
Jessica was already taking more selfies in front of the anchor and everyone else went to go join her. Parker and I even noticed a few people dressed in cosplay outfits that we were able to recognize. These movies had definitely brought the fans out in droves, and something about standing there among them just felt like home. You know?
Finally...an entire community where I could easily fit into...just by being myself.
“Take our picture! Parker? Kevin? One of you!” Ally said, and practically threw us her phone before hoping up on the anchor with everybody else. And they all shuffled around until they got a decent pose going, and we snapped a few pics for them to keep. “Nice!”
That’s when Brianna said, “Ok, you guys! Your turn!”
Parker and I both giggled cheerfully at one another, and I said, “Why? We live here. We can come out to the Pier any time we want to.”
“First of all...that is SO unfair!” Ally said. “And second of all, I want to remember this moment and you two forever. So get up there, and we’ll send you copies later.”
We both blushed a little bit, and the Pier was pretty full that day. But they were just going to keep egging us on and getting louder and louder with ever request if we didn’t go along with it all. So, bashfully...we gave Ally her camera back and tried to keep from feeling really silly about this.
It was then that Parker happily jumped up on the anchor, and he turned around to lend me his hand to help me up and join him. I felt so goofy, and kept looking down at my feet while trying not to snicker too much. “Come on, Kevin. I kinda wanna remember today too.” I sighed to myself, knowing that I’d end up giving in eventually...but I sort of fidgeted and shifted from foot to foot anyway. Parker said, “Hey...don’t ever act on any impulse that...”
“...Any impulse that requires hesitation. Yeah, I know.” I said, rolling my eyes with a grin as we quoted the book. “And don’t do that! You know that’s my weakness.”
The girls began to chant, “Do it! Do it! Do it!” Until I finally took Parker’s hand and stepped up to stand at his side. The girls started taking a bunch of pictures of the two of us together almost immediately, and I think a couple of other people at the end of the Pier took a few photos themselves.
Parker looked into my eyes, and we both found ourselves locked in a timeless moment where the rest of the world just seemed to fade away for a little while. Just a blissful minute or two where I fully understood why someone in a fictional story would consider sacrificing daylight itself to spend an eternity with a boy so breathtakingly beautiful. So perfect in everything that he does. Perfect in everything that he is. It warmed my heart to know that there was a magnificent soulmate out there in the world...someone that the angels made JUST for me...and I found him. Sweet Jesus...against all odds, I actually found him.
“KISS!!!” Ally shouted out, her entire posse of romantic cohorts nearly falling to pieces in a fit of giggles. “C’mon! Do it!”
I looked at Parker, who was so red in the face that it was almost comical in its appearance. It was then that I took a hold of his hand again, and I said, “I believe we have a request from our ‘fans’. What do you say?”
Parker didn’t say anything at all. Instead, he just leaned forward, and I made sure to meet him half way so our lips could meet with an innocent passion that caused my heart to race so fast that it nearly left me breathless. And not just a little peck on the lips either. We allowed it to linger for a while, enjoying the intimacy of being able to openly display our tender union in front of other people like this. On a pedestal, no less. I had never done anything like this before...but I think I liked it.
Don’t worry though. There were kids around, as well as a few frowny faced adults who were probably waiting for the opportunity to complain about something being dirty or lewd in the public square...so we kept our kissing to a minimum. It’s not like we were deep tongue throat fucking each other while shoving our hands down each other’s pants or anything. Still, we shared our lovely little smooch and savored it long enough for the girls to squeal and swoon over seeing us being so intimate with one another like that. But what really shocked and surprised us both...was the sound of a few clapping hands coming from the left of us.
We turned to see a few people, who I guess knew the story about as well as we did, or at least the movie version...and they began to applaud us for being such a cute couple. That led to a few more applause, and soon there were about ten or fifteen people that we had never seen before in our lives cheering us on. Calling us ‘brave’ and giving us their support. It was, like...too surreal for my brain to really process at first. I mean...this is ok with them? Are they actually celebrating a couple of teen boys for having the guts to exist in their own version of ‘normal’ without being forced to change or labeled as immature and confused? Who the hell could have seen THAT coming???
Trying to be a little bit silly to fend off our embarrassment for getting so much attention all at once, Parker and I started to bow and blow kisses to the crowd before it got to be a bit too much for me and I had to hop back down to the concrete. Hehehe! And just like he had done for me...I extended my hand to Parker to help him jump down to join me.
He climbed down and we smiled at one another. Holding our eye contact as words couldn’t possibly convey what we were both feeling in that moment. And yet...our eyes said it all. Honest and unrestricted. And as a few people were still clapping for us in the background, Parker lightly lifted my chin with two fingers, and with a smile...he whispered, “I love you...because you saved me.”
There’s something about the way that he said it that made me tear up and get a lump in the back of my throat. It was intense. Almost too intense. “I love you too, Parker...” I said with a quivering bottom lip. And then we kissed again before he just wrapped his arms around my shoulders and hugged me tight while I snaked my own around his slender middle...just trying not to be overwhelmed by the love in my heart. It wasn’t easy. Trust me.
We just rocked back and forth for a few moments in each other’s warm embrace, until Parker giggled and said, “God, you smell good.”
“Oh...it’s bath gel.” I grinned.
“Well, yeah...it smells good.” He said. “I kinda want to be alone with you right now. Is that weird?”
“If it is, it’s the kinda weird that I like.” I replied.
“I think...no, I’m sure...I meant what I said, Kevin.” He said, still holding me close so he could rest his chin on my shoulder and I wouldn’t b able to look him in the eye. “I think I love you. I mean, I’m like...in love with you.” Then he paused before nervously asking me, “Is that ok?”
All I could do was melt in his arms, moaning back, “It’s better than ok, Parker. It’s a perfect match to what I feel for you too. Love you.”
That’s when he loosened his hold on me and we leaned back a bit so we could kiss again. “I think people are sort of watching us now. Hehehe!”
“Let ‘em watch. Who cares?”
Just then, Ally and her friends came rushing over to gather around us for a group hug! Squeezing us until we could barely breathe! “I can’t STAND how cute you two are!!! Omigod! I’m feeling so faint right now!”
I laughed. “It was just a kiss...”
“We got SO many pics! We’ll send you every last one of them, k? Promise!” She said. “So, we’re still going to the AMC meet and greet the day after tomorrow, right? You’ve gotta be there with us!”
Parker and I exchanged a joyful look, and he said, “Sounds like a plan to me. Just let us know where to meet up with you guys and we’ll be there.”
So we’re really ARE doing this then! Ummm, ok! That’s cool with me! Hehehe!
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