Sunday, January 30, 2011

Chapter 10 Preview


Barbara visits Oliver and they discuss George.

Cristian tells Kyle about Nick’s visit to Oliver

Kyle tracks Nick down.

Oliver confides in Zach.

Chapter 9: A Kish Family Thanksgiving

Kyle continues to look into Oliver’s eyes. Kyle is pleading silently with Oliver to talk. Oliver tries to look away, but is entranced by Kyle’s eyes.

Kyle sits on the hospital bed next to Oliver. He keeps his eyes locked on Oliver. He then grabs Oliver’s hand with his own hand.

“What’s goin’ on? What’s goin’ through that head of yours?”

Oliver again tries to look way. Kyle grabs Oliver’s face with his other hand and pulls Oliver’s face back to his. “Look at me, Oliver.”

“I’m not sure I can be who you want or need me to be,” says Oliver struggling to get the words out.

“Where’s this comin’ from? What happened between the time I left this morning and now?”

“I just think you will be happier with someone else. Someone who is more out and more gay.”

Kyle chuckles. “More out and more gay. Did you really just say that?”

Oliver becomes irritated with Kyle’s chuckle. “You know what I mean, Kyle. Don’t you want someone who knows and accepts himself completely? Don’t you need someone who can comfortably and without any hesitation hold your hand in public?  Or even kiss you in public? I don’t know if I can do any of that. I want to, but you deserve to have someone who knows he can. You deserve someone better than me.”

Oliver’s last words hit a nerve inside Kyle. He stands, crosses his arms and heads over to the room window staring outside. “Fish. Don’t you tell me what is best for me. I am a grown man and can make my own decisions. Why do ya’ insist on bein’ so hard on yourself?”

“I’m only thinking about you. I want you to be happy.”

Kyle turns to face Oliver, but remains by the window. “This isn’t about me. This is about you. Why can’t ya’ believe in yourself? Why can’t ya’ see how great ya’ are?”

“I’m anything but great. Look at how I’ve treated you since college. You should hate me for the way I treated you.”

Kyle’s anger builds. “Stop tryin’ to put thoughts into my head.  Stop tellin’ me how I should feel. I don’t hate ya’ and ya’ know that. I have forgiven you. I understand where ya’ were at then. It doesn’t excuse the behavior or make the hurt feel any less real, but I’m ready to put the past behind us. You need to do the same.”

“Its not that easy, Kyle.”

“It is if ya’ want it bad enough. Do ya’ want this, Oliver? Just days ago you were pleadin’ with me to give ya’ another chance. I’m givin’ ya’ that chance. Are ya’ really goin’ to screw it up again? Do I mean nothin’ to ya’?”

Oliver leans his head back against the pillow and briefly closes his eyes. Oliver then opens his eyes and looks over to Kyle. “You’re my world, Kyle.”

Kyle raises his arms and shakes them at Oliver. ‘Then stop this insanity.  Quit tryin’ to derail us before we even get started agin. Lets see where things go. Don’t push me away again. Did your mother say somethin’? Did you talk with or see your father? Where’s this coming from? ”

“This is all me. No one else.”

“I don’t believe ya’, Fish. I know ya’ pretty damn well. Someone has put these thoughts in your head. They’re playin’ on your vulnerability. Who was it, Fish?”

Oliver looks away from Kyle. “There’s no one. I already said this is all me.”

Kyle knows Oliver is not telling him the truth. Oliver not being able to look at him as he says his last words give it away.

Kyle is firm in his stance. “I’ll figure out who it is, Oliver. “

Kyle’s beeper then goes off. Kyle looks at it.

“They need me in the ER.”

Kyle walks over to stand by Oliver next to the bed. “This discussion isn’t over. I‘ll find out who’s been messing with your head and when I do.”

Oliver continues to look away. “There is no one, Kyle. How many times do I have to tell you?”

“Fine, Fish. You’re so damn frustratin’ sometimes, but that’s part of the reason I am so drawn to ya’.”

Kyle bends down and brings his lips to Oliver’s lips. Oliver melts in his kiss. The previous discussion is temporarily forgotten as the kiss deepens in intensity.  The two pull away from each other and Kyle walks to the door.

Kyle grabs the door handle and looks back at Oliver. “Ya’ made me a promise, Oliver.  Ya’ said we would talk through things and ya’ would let me help ya’ with things as we move forward. You’re not goin’ to push me away again. I won’t let you. I’ll hold ya’ to your promise. I’m not goin’ to give up on us as easily as you gave up on us back in college. I want this too bad. I want you. I know ya’ want us too. I’ll be back later to check on ya’.”

Kyle exits the room.

Oliver lets Kyle’s words soak in. ‘I’m not goin’ to give up on us as easily as you gave up on us back in college. I want us too bad. I want you. I know ya’ want us too.’

“You’re right, Kyle. I do want us to work. I only hope I can be what you want me to be.”

The next afternoon Cris and Layla sit at the kitchen bar making a grocery list for the upcoming Thanksgiving meal.

“Can you think of anything else we need?” asks Layla.

Cris surveys the list. “I think this should do it.”

Layla stands and grabs her purse off the counter. “Great. Your Mom and I are going to the store to pick this stuff up. It might take a while. Going the day before Thanksgiving is probably not the best idea. The store will be super crazy.”

Cris stands and smiles. “Well you guys have fun.”

“You don’t want to join us?”

Cris smiles. “Well I love spending as much time with you as possible, but Kyle is supposed to bring Fish home sometime this afternoon. Kyle’s shift does not end until 10PM so he asked if we could keep an eye on Fish while he goes back to work.”

Layla smiles. “Ok. You’re a good guy Cristian Vega.”

 “Don’t let that get out. I have an image to protect,” says Cris.

Layla smiles and approaches Cris.

The two kiss.

Layla breaks off the kiss and heads toward the door. “I’ll be back as soon as I can.”

Layla opens the door and sees Oliver and Kyle.

“Hey guys.”

Cristian comes up behind Layla. “Hey. You should have called we could have met you downstairs.”

“Thanks Cris, but Oliver doesn’t want any special treatment. He’s not exactly the best patient,” says Kyle.

Oliver slowly makes his way into the apartment. He is still in a lot of discomfort from the two surgeries.  He carefully sits down on the sofa.

“Very funny, Kyle. It’s good to be home. Are you heading out, Layla?” Oliver notices the purse over her arm.

“I’m meeting Carlotta to get the groceries for our Thanksgiving feast tomorrow.  Do you need anything before I go, Fish?”

“I’m good. Enjoy the shopping trip,” says Oliver.

Layla kisses Cris goodbye.

Kyle and Oliver smile at each other as they watch the kiss between their friends.

“I’ll be back as soon as I can.” Layla exits the apartment.

Kyle walks over to Oliver and stands in front of him. “I need to get back to the hospital. Are ya’ goin’ to be okay?”

“Layla has me watching some laundry. I’m going to check on it. I’ll be back in a few.” Cris heads to the laundry room.

Oliver looks up at Kyle. “I wish you could stay.  I already miss you.”

“I’ll come back after my shift if you want me to.”

Oliver continues to look up at Kyle. He grabs Kyle’s hand. “I would love that.”

“Great. I’ll see ya’ later tonight then. Ya’ need to take it easy today. You’ll probably be more tired than ya’ realize.” Kyle bends down and gives Oliver a kiss.

Kyle turns and tries to walk toward the door, but Oliver will not relinquish hold of his hand.

Kyle turns backs and notes a look of concern on Oliver’s face.

Kyle sits down on his knees in front of Oliver. “Oliver?” Kyle places his hands on Oliver’s knees.

“Are we okay? I feel like such an idiot for yesterday. I wish I could more confident in myself and in us.”

“Hey. In time ya’ will be. Ya’ just came out. Give yourself a break. Don’t be so hard on yourself.”

“I don’t want to let you down, Kyle.”

Kyle places both of his hands on Oliver’s face. “Listen to me. I’m still here. Ya’ through a curve ball at us yesterday, but I’m still here. I’m not goin’ away. You’re in my heart, Oliver Fish. Ya’ always have been. Ya’ have some flaws. Who doesn’t? You’re still adjustin’ to the new you. Some roads bumps along the way are to be expected.”

Oliver sheepishly smiles. “You’re so great, Kyle. Why did I push you away for so long?”

“Stop worryin’ about the past. I told ya’ before every thing happens for a reason. The past is the past. We’ll ultimately be stronger because of the past.”

Oliver’s smile grows. “You’re so confident in yourself, in us. I wish I could tap into that and stop being such a drama queen.”

Kyle pulls Oliver’s face to his and places a kiss on his mouth. He then lets out a big smile.

“What are you smiling at?”

“You silly.”

Oliver with one of his famous scrunch faces. “What?”

“The Oliver I knew a few months ago would never call himself a drama queen. That’s progress.”

Oliver lets out a laugh. “I guess your right. That’s kind of funny. Are you sure you can handle a drama queen named Oliver?”

Kyle continues to smile. “I can handle it. Ya’ know why?”


“Because I’m with the most beautiful man I’ve ever known.”

Oliver’s face goes red with embarrassment. “Stop it.”

“Ya’ okay now? I hate to run off. I would love to stay, but I need to get back to the hospital.”

“I’ll be fine. Thank you.”

“For what?” asks Kyle.

“For being you.”

Kyle smiles and brings Oliver back into a kiss. They get lost in each other for a few minutes.

Cris then enters the room. “Hey guys.”

Kyle and Oliver break away from the kissing, Kyle stands and they look over at Cris.

“Sorry guys. I’ll come back.”

“Its okay, Cris. I need to be goin’ anyway.”

“I always seem to walk in at the wrong moments. It all started back in the alley a few months back. Maybe I am secretly jealous of you, Kyle.”

Kyle and Oliver laugh.

“That’s it, Cris. You’re jealous of me being with Kyle. You want me for yourself,” says Oliver.

Cris, continuing to go along with the banter, walks over and sits next to Oliver on the couch. “Oh my, I see the truth now. I want you for myself, Fish. You need to let Kyle go and give us a shot.”

Kyle joins in on the fun. “Do we need to take this outside, Vega? I’ll fight for my man. Of course you have some extra muscle on me, but I think I could take you.”

Cris stands. “Lets go. The truth is liberating. I need Oliver for myself.”

Oliver shakes his head and laughs. “You’re hilarious, Cristian Vega.”

“I know, right. You guys are so lucky to have me on your side.”

Kyle and Oliver look at each other and agree. “We’re indeed very lucky to have a good friend like you. We appreciate ya’ bein’ a part of our lives,” says Kyle.

“Lets not get all mushy. I do have an image to protect,” says an embarrassed Cris.

Kyle walks to the door. “I really do need to get going.”

Cris looks over to Oliver. “Did you give it to him?”

Oliver looks over at Cris. “Not yet.”

Kyle with his hand on the doorknob turns and looks back at Cris and Oliver. “Give me what?”

Oliver slowly stands and makes his way over to the bookcase. He picks up a key off the shelf net to the door. “This is for you.” Oliver hands the key to Kyle.

“What’s this?” asks Kyle.

“Its a key to the apartment.”

Kyle is not sure what to make of the gesture, “Are ya’ sure?”

“I’m not asking you to move in or anything, Kyle. I just thought it made sense as I hope you’ll be spending more time here in the future.”

Kyle looks over to Cris. “Are you and Layla cool with this?”

Cris shakes his head yes. “We support the idea.”

Kyle smiles at Oliver. “Okay. I accept the offer.”

Oliver smiles and goes over to Kyle. He kisses Kyle again and brings him into a hug. “I’m so happy you’re here with me. Thank you.”

“I don’t want to be anywhere else,” says Kyle

Cris continues to joke around. “Hands off my guy, Lewis. We can still take this outside. Oh and by the way we plan on eating about 2PM tomorrow.”

Kyle and Oliver pull apart from the hug.

Kyle opens the door. “2PM sounds great. I’ll see ya’ tomorrow Cris.” Kyle looks back to Oliver. “I’ll see you later tonight.”

“I can’t wait,” says Oliver.

Kyle exits the apartment and closes the door behind him.

Cris walks to the kitchen. “So are you okay? You seemed a little tense when you guys came home.”

Oliver walks slowly over to the breakfast bar and has a seat in one of the bar stools.

“Oh, Mr. Unsure Oliver almost blew it yesterday.”

Cris looks at Oliver from across the bar. “What happened?”

“I had a another self-doubt episode. I’m so unsure of being an out and gay Oliver. I let those fears get the better of me and tried to tell Kyle he deserved better.’

“Fish man. He loves you. He’ll help you through all that.”

“I know. Kyle’s great. He’s awesome in fact. He said he wasn’t going anywhere, but my doubts seem to take control sometimes.”

“What brought all this on?”


“Kyle’s ex?”

“Yeah. He stopped by the hospital and just asked me if I was ready to be the man Kyle wanted or needed me to be.”

“He had no right to do that.”

“I don’t think he meant anything by it. He still cares about Kyle.”

“Bull, Fish. He knew exactly what he was doing. He knew where to hit you at and he used it.”

“Its only because he cares for Kyle. It’s natural that he is hurting. I’m not upset with him.”

“Why the hell not? He played on your insecurities. Fine, he is hurting. I still don’t get that as I do not think him and Kyle were together all that long, but that doesn’t give him the right to disrespect you like that. Did you tell Kyle about the visit?”

“No. No way. I’m not telling Kyle. He kept trying to say yesterday that someone put these thoughts in my head, but I told him it was all me.”

“Why did you do that? He has the right to know what his ex is up to. Trying to undermine your relationship with Kyle is not cool.”

“I don’t want to cause anymore trouble between Kyle and Nick. Nick was great with Kyle when I was first shot and taken to the hospital. It’s important to Kyle that they remain friends. I don’t want to come between them.”

Cris leans on the breakfast bar with his hands. “You should tell Kyle. I think him and Nick still need to have some closure. This may help with that.”

“I can’t. I don’t want to come off as the jealous type.”

“I think Nick will come off as the jealous type.”

“I’m not telling Kyle about the visit Cris. I just want to forget it happened.”

Cris notices the increased stress in Oliver’s face and tries to lighten the mood. “I see what I need to do now.”

Oliver scrunches his face again. “What?”

“I need to pay this Nick character a visit. No one messes with my boys.”

“Your boys?”

“Sure. You guys are part of the Cristian Vega team now. No one messes with a Vega.”

Oliver laughs. “I appreciate the sentiment Cris, but I think we’ll leave the Nick issue alone. Kyle is really special. Nick sees that too and only wants to make sure Kyle is going to be okay.”

“What about you? You deserve to be okay, what he did yesterday is so not cool.”

“It came from a good place.”

Cris shakes his head. “You’re not going to change your mind on this, are you? You‘re too nice, Oliver Fish. I would go and set that guy straight and I would tell Kyle exactly what happened.”

Oliver delicately stands. “Its all good. Listen I’m going to get some rest. I’m a bit tired. Do you need anything from me before I crash a bit.”

Cris laughs. “No. You’re the one who just got home from the hospital. Go. Gets some sleep. Layla and I will check on you later.”

Oliver walks towards the bedroom. ‘Thanks for being such a good pal. I appreciate it.”

“Anytime, Fish. Anytime.”

Oliver exits to the bedroom.

Cris walks over to the sofa, has a seat and flips on the TV.

Oliver wakes up from his sleep. He initially forgets that he is back home. At first he thinks he is still in the hospital. When his eyes come into focus he looks around and realizes he is at home. He looks over at the clock, which displays 3;07AM. Oliver thinks to himself. ‘Wow! Have I really been a sleep that long?’

He looks next to him in bed hoping to see Kyle, but the bed is empty.

Oliver’s self doubt takes over again. ‘Kyle didn’t come back. Kyle’s more upset with him than he let on.’

Oliver misses him. He had become so accustomed to Kyle being with him every night at the hospital that it now seems strange to even be home, yet alone . Oliver knows he needs to adjust again in terms of being apart from Kyle on some occasions. After all, they could not spend every waking hour together, even though Oliver wishes they could be.

An exhausted Kyle then enters the bedroom trying to be quiet and not make a lot of noise.

Oliver switches on the light. “Hey you.”

Kyle smiles. “Hey I didn’t mean to wake ya’. Sorry I’m late. Did ya’ get my text? I had to work over. I got out of work around 2 and then went by my place to grab some clothes and bathroom stuff for tomorrow. I figured I’d just get ready here so we could spend the day together.”

Oliver looks over at his phone on the nightstand and sees the message light flashing on his phone. The self-doubt is instantly erased.

Kyle heads toward the bathroom. “I’ll be right back.”

Oliver feels at peace knowing Kyle is now here with him.

Kyle exits the bathroom. He only wears his boxers now having taken off the scrubs he was previously wearing.

Oliver looks over at Kyle and admires the skinny, muscular man in front of him. “You’re so hot, Kyle Lewis.”

Kyle gets into bed and faces Oliver (laying on his side). “Thanks. How ya’ feelin’?”

“A little sore, but doing okay. You have to be exhausted. Lets get some sleep.”

Kyle drifts into sleep pretty quickly. Oliver smiles and is content knowing that a sleeping Kyle is right next to him. He switches off the light, but continues to watch Kyle sleep once his eyes adjust to the darkness. Kyle begins to slightly snore. Oliver smiles. All is right with the world.

The next day Kyle wakes up from his sleep. He looks over at the clock, which now reads 12:20PM. He looks over to the other side of the bed where he sees a piece of paper with a note on it.

Happy Thanksgiving! I can’t wait to spend this day with you. I am thankful to have you here with me. Love. Oliver.

Kyle smiles at the note and heads toward the bathroom to get ready.


About 40 minutes later Kyle enters the living room area of the apartment, He  feels rested and refreshed after his shower.

Cris and Oliver are both wearing aprons as they work together in the kitchen preparing the Thanksgiving meal. Layla is sits at the breakfast bar in one of the stools supervising the kitchen activities.

Kyle approaches and has a seat next to Layla. “Good mornin’, everyone. Happy Thanksgiving.”

“Well good morning,” says Oliver. “We almost thought you were going to sleep through the entire day.”

“I was really tired I guess, but I’m good now. Is there anything I can do to help?”

Layla looks over to Kyle. “Trust me. They have it all under control. You and I should just stay out of the kitchen. I tried to be helpful a little earlier and was just in the way.”

Cris looks at Layla and Kyle from across the bar. “That’s because I cannot concentrate on the cooking when you’re standing next to me.”

Everyone smiles at Cris’s comment.

“I hope its okay, but I invited one more person to join us today,” says Kyle.

Oliver curious. “Who?”

Kyle stands and walks over to Oliver. He gently grabs the apron with his hands. “That’s a surprise. You’ll have to wait and see. Are ya’ feelin’ okay? You’re not doin’ too much are ya’?”

“I’m good. I feel a lot better today. So who is it? This surprise guest.”

Kyle smiles and walks back over to the bar stool next to Layla. “You’ll just have to wait and see.”

“That brings our total guest count up to 7 today,” says Layla. “You guys better not let us down on the food.”

Cris and Oliver laugh.

“No chance of that happening. Right Fish?” Cris looks at Fish.

“The food will be great! Promise,” says Oliver.

Kyle continues to look at Cris and Oliver. “I must say you two are very hot in those aprons.”

“I know right. I was just thinking the same thing,” says Layla.

Kyle and Layla smile at each other. Cris and Oliver are embarrassed.

“Can you guys set up the tables and chairs from the other room? We can temporarily move the sofa and coffee table out and set up the tables in the living room.” Cris grabs some tablecloths from above the refrigerator and hands them to Kyle. “These will go on the tables once they are set up.”

Layla stands. “Lets go, Kyle. We can do this.”

Layla and Kyle go to get the tables and chairs from the other room and begin the set up process.

Cris and Oliver continue to work in the kitchen.

“Are you ready for some football?” asks Oliver.

“Am I ever,” says Cristian.

There is a knock at the front door.

“I’ll get it,” says Layla.

Layla opens the door and there stands John McBain.

“Hey, John,” says Layla.

“Hey. Happy Thanksgiving. I hope I’m not interrupting. I was hoping I could chat with Fish for a second.”

Layla motions John in. “Come on in. Oliver, you have a visitor.”

Oliver looks up and sees John. “Hey, John. Just a second.” Oliver washes his hands, dries them off with a towel and heads over to John.

“Happy Thanksgiving, John. This is a surprise. Is it a case you need my help on?”

“No work today, Fish. I brought you guys this bottle of wine and wanted to make sure your doing okay.” John hands Fish the wine.

“Thanks, John. This is very nice of you. I’m doing okay.”

“Sorry I couldn’t make it to the hospital, but I’ve been out of town with work. You did a great thing Oliver, saving Zach’s life.”

“I was just doing my job, John. I can’t wait to get back to work.”

“When do you think that’ll be?”

“Probably a few weeks per Dr. Evans.”

“Good deal. I need you back at the station. You’re a critical part of the team.”

Oliver is not great at accepting compliments and digs deep inside to get the next few words out. “Thanks, John. I appreciate that. Do you want to stay for dinner?”

“No thanks. Marty and I have our own plans, but I appreciate the offer.”

“Sure. Listen there’s someone I want you to meet.”

Kyle looks up from setting the tables up.

“Kyle, can you come over here?” asks Oliver.

Kyle walks over to John and Oliver.

“John, this is Kyle Lewis. Kyle, this is my boss, John McBain.”

John extends his hand to Kyle for a shake. Kyle takes John’s hand and they shake.

“Its nice to meet you, Kyle.”

“Likewise, John.”

“Kyle is my boyfriend, John.”

Kyle looks at Oliver in amazement. He never gets tired of hearing Oliver call him his boyfriend.

“I’ve seen you around before Kyle. Right?”

“Probably in the police station a while back. Things were a bit crazy then, but are back on track now. I have Oliver to keep me in check now.”

“I thought so. Well its nice to meet you. I really should be going now. Marty will be wondering what happened to me.”

“Thanks for stopping by John. I appreciate it. And thanks for the wine.”

“Sure. No problem. Happy Thanksgiving everyone.”

Everyone replies. “Happy Thanksgiving.”

John exits the apartment.

Kyle looks at Oliver. “That was really nice of him to stop by.”

“John’s great. I look up to him a lot. He has always treated me very fair.”

“Kyle, are you going to help me finish the tables?” asks Layla.

“Oliver, back to the kitchen. We have more work to do,” says Cris.

Kyle and Oliver smile at each other and head back to their respective tasks.

Kyle and Layla finish setting up the table and chairs.

Oliver and Cris continue the food preparation.

Within minutes there is another knock on the door.

Layla once again opens the door.

“Hi, Carlotta.”

“Hey, Layla.” The two hug. The hug disbands.

“Wow, it smells great in here. I’m starving. When do we eat?”

Cris walks from the kitchen to the living room. “Hey, Mommy. Happy Thanksgiving.”

Carlotta hugs her son. “Hey, handsome. Need any help in the kitchen?”

Cris knows better than to say no. “Sure. I can always use help. Let me introduce you around. That’s Oliver, as you know, helping me out in the kitchen.”

Oliver looks up. “Hey, Mrs. Vega!”

“Hi, Oliver. It’s good to see you. Please call me Carlotta. How’re you feeling?”

“Carlotta it is then. I’m doing okay. Thanks for asking.”

“Glad to hear it. We were all very worried about you.”

“Thanks for that.” Oliver returns to his activities in the kitchen.

“And this is Kyle Lewis, Mommy. He’s Oliver’s boyfriend.”

Kyle walks over to Cris and Carlotta. “Its nice to meet you, Mrs. Vega.” Kyle extends his hand and the two shake

“No need to be so formal. You may call me Carlotta also.”

Kyle smiles. “Thanks, Carlotta. I appreciate that.”

“Ok off to the kitchen we go Mommy.”

Carlotta and Cris head into the kitchen with Oliver.

Kyle and Layla return to the bar stools.

The five of them laugh, talk and cut up with each other. It is a happy time.


A few minutes later there is another knock on the door.

Kyle stands ordering Layla to sit with his hand. “I’ll get it this time. You stay seated and continue supervisin’ the cookin’.”

Kyle walks to the door and opens it. Roxy is standing outside.

“Hey, handsome.”

“Roxy! What are you doing here?”

“Having a Thanksgiving meal with my guys.”

“I didn’t know you were coming.”

Oliver walks from the kitchen to the door.

“Hey, Roxy. Come on in.”

Roxy enters the apartment. Kyle closes the door behind her.

“Can I hug you, Fish?” asks Roxy.

Oliver smiles. “Sure. Just watch the shoulder. You know gun shot wound and all.” Oliver points to his left shoulder.

The two hug. Roxy is very delicate to ensure she does not hurt him. “It’s great to see ya’ out of the hospital. Thanks for invitin’ me over today. It means a lot.”

Kyle looks at Fish. “You did this?”

Oliver blushes. “I wanted to surprise you. I know how close you guys are.”

Kyle brings Oliver into a hug. “Thank you so much. This means a lot.”

‘You’re welcome. I need to get back to the kitchen. It’s close to eating time.”

Oliver heads back to the kitchen.

Roxy and Kyle hug.

“Thank you for being here, Rox. My family is all here now.”

“Anytime, pal. Any news on the Fish thanksgiving surprise?”

Kyle looks at his watch. “Only time will tell. Keep your fingers crossed. Lets go into the kitchen and say hi to everyone else.”

Roxy and Kyle head to the kitchen. There is more talking, laughing and fun.


Cris finishes carving the turkey and brings the turkey on a serving platter over to the breakfast bar with the rest of the food. “Ok I think we’re ready. Everyone can grab a plate and serve themselves and then grab a seat over at the table.”

“Everything looks wonderful and smells great,” says Carlotta.

“I agree, Carlotta. Cris and Oliver did a great job, “ says Layla.

“I mimic those comments,” says Roxy.

Roxy looks to Kyle. Kyle glances at his watch. He shrugs his shoulders.

“Someone start filling their plates already,” says Cris.

Layla and Carlotta start filling their plates.

Then there is another knock at the door.

Kyle looks to Oliver. “Why don’t you get the door, Oliver?”

“What are you up to Kyle?” asks Oliver suspiciously.

“Just get the door.”

Oliver heads toward the door. Everyone except Roxy looks at Kyle with ‘a what is going on’ look. Kyle smiles and looks back to the door.

Oliver opens the door.

“Hey, Oliver.”

“Mom! What are you doing here?”

“I was hoping I could spend Thanksgiving with my son.”

Oliver grabs his Mom and hugs her feeling a slight twinge of pain in his shoulder in the process. “I’m so glad you’re here. This means so much to me.”

Barbara welcomes her son into her arms.

The two tear up.

Kyle walks over to them and places his hand on Oliver’s other shoulder. “Hey guys, lets eat. We don’t want the food to get cold.”

Barbara and Oliver release from the embrace and enter the apartment. “Everyone, this is my Mom.”

Roxy walks over to Barbara and wraps her arms around her. “Lets get ya’ some food. My name is Roxy or Rox for short. We’re super happy that ya’ are here. I know Fish is uber exited that you could make it.”

Barbara smiles at Roxy’s comment.

Oliver stands frozen by the door watching the scene unfold. His Mom introduces herself to Carlottta and says hi to Cris and Layla. Tears form in Oliver’s eyes. Kyle stands next to Oliver. Oliver grabs Kyle’s hand. He squeezes Kyle’s hand and looks over to him.

Oliver mouths the following works, but does not say them out load. “Thank you.”

Kyle smiles and wraps his arms around Oliver’s waist.  “She loves ya’, Oliver. She needs some time to git used to us. This is a big step for her.”

Oliver brings Kyle into his arms. This guy was so good to him even after all the crap he had put him through.


Everyone is now seated at the table with full plates of food.

Roxy is sits at the head of the table. Layla, Cris and Carlotta sit to the left of her. On her right is Kyle, Oliver and Barbara.

“Lets join hands please and pray,” says Cris.

“Thanks for the food we are about to share and most importantly thanks for allowing us all to be together as a family. Amen.”

 “Amen” says everyone almost in unison.

“That was beautiful, Cris. Short and to the point,” says Layla.

Cris smiles at Layla. “Thanks. Can we eat now? I’m starving.”

Everyone laughs at Cris’ child like comment.

They eat, laugh, talk and simply enjoy being together.


A half-hour later and after several helpings of food by all the guests, Kyle stands.

Everyone looks over at Kyle.

“I thought we could go around the table and say what we’re thankful for before we start clearing the dishes and putting the leftovers away. Roxy, could you start us off?”

Kyle sits.

“Should I stand?” asks Roxy.

“Its up to you.”

“I’ll stand. I like the attention.” Roxy pauses to gather her words.

“I’m thankful for my family, for my kids and especially for the health of my grandson, Shane. I almost lost him this year, but thankfully he’s fine now. I’m thankful for all of you letting me be here today. You guys rock! And most importantly I want to thank you. Kyle.” Roxy looks over at Kyle. “It’s super nice to have someone I can relate to on so many levels and who can handle all my craziness. You’re the gravy, pal. I’m beyond excited that we got past our differences and are now able to be great friends. I think you’re the best. And ya’ better treat Tuna right. Or I might just have to take him away from ya’. Thanks again everyone. It means a lot to be here.” Roxy sits.

Layla stands. “I’m thankful to have all you here with me today and to be a part of such a special group of people.  Oliver, I love you to death. Kyle, you’re so great with him. Mrs. Fish, I’m so excited that you could be here today. I know it means the world to Oliver. And Cris, thank you for being at my side and for sharing this day with me. I’m not sure what is ahead for us, but I can’t wait to find out.” Layla sits.

Cris stands. “Ok, I’m not a man of many words, but I’m thankful to have my Mommy here and for her to have  a chance to get to know my girlfriend (I love hearing that) Layla better.  I’m super glad you’re in my life, Layla.  I love you. I’m also thankful for my good friends, Fish and Kyle.  I love all you guys so much, but don’t let that get out or my masculinity could be questioned and we wouldn’t want that.”

Everyone smiles as Cris sits down.

Carlotta stands. “I’m thankful that my son has found someone to love. Layla, I think you’re the best and if you can put up with a Vega boy you’re a very strong woman! Most importantly I’m thankful for all the love in this room today. It warms my heart to be here and I can’t thank you enough for letting me be included.” Carlotta sits.

Cristian grabs her hand. “I love you, Mommy.”

“I love you too, Cristian.”

Barbara then stands. “I want to thank Kyle for standing by my Oliver when he was fighting for his life. I was foolish in the past. I didn’t understand how Oliver could want to be with Kyle or another man in general. But my eyes were finally opened as I sat in the hospital waiting area with Kyle. Kyle loves Oliver and Oliver loves Kyle. I was too blinded in the past to see how deep this love is. I’m sorry for that. I truly am. I’m sorry that I am partly responsible for keeping you guys apart these last few years. I hope you can forgive me and be patient with me as we move forward. I want to be part of your life. You’re my son. I just want you to be happy. I love you, son.”

Tears form in Barbara and Oliver’s eyes as she sits back down. Oliver places his hand on his Mom’s shoulder and squeezes her shoulder.

Kyle then stands to give Oliver a few minutes to recover from the tears. “I’m thankful that all of ya’ knocked some sense into me a few weeks back. I love this man sitting next to me with all my heart. I was too blind to see it for a while. I want to thank ya’ all for welcoming me into your lives and sharin’ Oliver with me.”
Kyle looks over to Oliver. “I want to thank you for givin’ us another chance. For lettin’ me back in and for acceptin’ who you are. I want to thank you for being you. Ya’ are my soul, Oliver Fish. There’s no escapin’ ya’. But the good news is I don’t want to anymore. I love you and can’t wait to build a life with ya’.”

Kyle bends down and kisses Oliver in front of the group. Kyle sits. Oliver slowly stands. His shoulder is throbbing in pain, but the day’s happy activities overshadow the pain. “I want to say how blessed I am to have all of you in my life. I was so lost the last few years and months. I tried to be what everyone wanted me to be, instead of being who I wanted to be. In the process I hurt a lot of people sitting at this very table. I apologize for that. I know Layla I don’t need to keep apologizing. “ Layla smiles at Oliver. “I’m thankful my Mom could find her way here today. I’m thankful that she’s willing to try and accept me for who I am. I’m thankful that she recognizes how much Kyle means to me. I only hope my Dad can come forward like this at some point. I miss him so much, but having you here Mom really helps. Thanks again.” Oliver looks down to Kyle on his left. “And you. I can’t thank you enough for not giving up on me. You knew who I am long before I did and you were okay with the true Oliver. You still are. I am not the most comfortable gay guy in the world, but here you still sit at my side. And having you at my side during my recent hospital vacation meant the world to me. Although, I just want to clarify, I don’t want any more vacations in the hospital. Hawaii would be good next time. To know that you are on my side and that you will be there when I need you is the best feeling ever. I don’t feel so alone anymore. I don’t feel like a shell of myself like I did just a few weeks back. I look forward to being this better Oliver. Thanks for sticking by me even when I hurt you so bad in the past. I still can’t believe some of the hurtful things I said to you. You’re simply the best and I can’t wait to build a life with you.”

Kyle stands and hugs Oliver. Oliver suddenly feels really tired and places the majority of his weight on Kyle.

“Do you need to rest for a bit Oliver?” asks Kyle still embracing Oliver.

Oliver. “I don’t want to be rude, but I’m really tired all of the sudden.”

“Its okay, everyone will understand. Lets say goodbye and I’ll help ya’ get settled in bed. Ok?”

The two break away from the hug.

“Everyone, Oliver needs to take a break and get some rest. The activities of the day have zapped his energy.”

Oliver continues to lean on Kyle for support. 

Roxy hugs Oliver. “Take care of yourself. I hope we get to see each other soon.”

“Take care, Oliver. Feel better soon,” says Carlotta patting him on the back.

Barbara walks over to Oliver. “Is there anything I can do for you son? Anything at all.”

“You already have, Mom. You being here is the best. Thanks,”

Barbara kisses Oliver on the forehead. “Take care of yourself, son. Let me know if you need anything at all.”

“Thanks, Mom.”

Kyle leads Oliver to the bedroom.


Later that evening Oliver wakes up from a very deep sleep.

Kyle sits next to him on the bed reading a magazine.

“Hey. What time is it?” asks Oliver.

“Its almost 10.”

“AM or PM?” asks Oliver.

“PM, Oliver.”

“I slept that long?” asks Oliver.

“Its all good. I think ya’ needed the rest. You’re still recuperatin’, remember.”

Oliver looks up at Kyle. “I’m glad your still here.”

“Where else would I be?”

“I’m just happy you’re here.”

Kyle puts the magazine down and grabs a box off of the nightstand. “I have a surprise for you.”

Oliver slowly sits up still feeling a bit tired from the long sleep. “What is it?”

Kyle hands Oliver the box. “Open it and see.”

Oliver opens the box and sees two neck chains with two rings (similar to weddings rings) on the chains.

Kyle grabs one of the chains and places it around Oliver’s neck. “That looks great on you. These are the rings that I want us to someday give each other when we’ve decided that we’re ready to take the next step in our relationship. I hope you don’t mind me picking them out.”

Oliver grabs the other chain and ring out of the box. “Not at all. They’re beautiful and what a sweet gesture.” Oliver places the other chain and ring around Kyle’s neck.

“Whenever ya’ feel any doubt about us, Oliver, I want ya’ to look at and feel that ring around your neck. Think about how much we love each other. Think about how that love will be enough as we go forward buildin’ our lives together. When ya’ look at that I want ya’ to know that I’m with ya’ and that I’m not going anywhere again. We’re connected. These rings will serve as a reminder of that. Well unless you kick me to the curb.”

“You don’t have to worry about that. I’m not letting go of you this time. I already made that mistake once. I’ll not repeat it.”

“Good to hear, Oliver. Good to hear. Hey do ya’ want some pumpkin pie now?”

“That sounds great. I’m starving already even after all that food earlier.”

Kyle smiles. “I’ll be right back then.”

Oliver climbs out of bed and walks over to the mirror. He looks closely at the necklace through the reflection in the mirror. Was this for real? Did Kyle just commit to a future with him? He smiles to himself as he looks at the chain and ring around his neck.

Kyle returns with a tray and two slices of pie. He sets the tray down on a nearby dresser.

Oliver smiles as Kyle approaches from behind. They stare at their reflections in the mirror.

“This has been the best day ever. Thank you, Kyle.”

“Thank you, Oliver. Can we eat some pie now? I’m starvin’ too.”

Oliver smiles, turns and faces Kyle. He places his hand around Kyle’s neck. “Pie can wait. Oliver needs to taste some Kyle right now.” Oliver kisses Kyle. “That’s so much better than pie.” Kyle smiles and the two start passionately kissing.

Chapter 9 Preview


A Kish Family Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving 2009 is celebrated.

Chapter 8: Oliver's Visitors

A couple of days pass since Oliver’s surgery after the botched burglary attempt. Dr. Evans transfers Oliver from the ICU to a private room. Dr. Evans tells Oliver he is impressed with his desire and zest for a quick recovery. Oliver does have a few minor set backs in his ongoing recovery as he tries to do too much, too soon and too fast.  These too fast activities often result in longer periods of complete bed rest, much to Oliver’s dismay.

Oliver hates being stuck in the hospital with nothing to do. Kyle brings him some books and magazines from home, but Oliver can only stand to read so much. TV is an option, but like reading Oliver can only tolerate it in small doses. There of course is always sleep. Sleep is becomes one of his favorite past times during his stay in the hospital. This usually means he is up most of the night. This does have its advantages, as Kyle routinely spends the night with Oliver either in Oliver’s bed or on the nearby sofa. Oliver loves watching Kyle sleep and hearing the small snores that escape from Kyle as he is sleeping.

Oliver opens his eyes to the morning sun peaking through the hospital room window. He hears Kyle’s familiar snores nearby. He looks over to see Kyle asleep on the sofa. Oliver does not remember Kyle coming into the room last night. Oliver thinks to himself that Kyle probably had to work a late shift and came to the room immediately following.

Oliver smiles to himself as he watches Kyle sleep on the sofa in his white lab coat and green scrubs. This vision is definitely a perk to dating a future doctor. Oliver often fantasizes about Kyle playing his doctor ever since Kyle told him was going to medical school. These fantasies always end up with Kyle eventually coming out of the lab coat and scrubs so Oliver could thank the doctor properly for the physical he received. A smile forms on Oliver’s face as he fantasizes about the doctor scenario again.

“What’re ya’ thinkin’ about, Officer Fish?” asks Kyle after opening his eyes. He notes that Oliver seems lost in deep thought.

Oliver does not hear Kyle say these words as he is too deep into the fantasy. Oliver’s mind is most definitely preoccupied with his fantasy at the moment.

Kyle looks over at Oliver from the sofa. “Oliver! Callin’ ,Oliver Fish! Snap out of it.”

Oliver still does not respond.

Kyle climbs off of the sofa and walks over to the bed. He stands next to the bed and waves his hand in front of Oliver’s face. “Hello. Earth to Oliver. Are ya’ in there?”

Kyle’s hand waves finally catch Oliver’s attention.

“Hey.” Oliver says shaking his head to help himself snap out of the fantasy thought process.

Kyle smiles. “Good mornin’. Havin’ some serious and deep thoughts already this mornin’?”

Oliver suddenly realizes that he’s been fantasizing about this super hot guy who now stands in front of him. Oliver becomes embarrassed and his face turns a slight shade of pink.  “Sorry about that.”

Kyle continues to smile. “So what has ya’ so deep in thought, Mr. Fish?” Kyle sits down on the bed beside Oliver.

Oliver still feels embarrassed. “You!”

“Me? What about me?”

Oliver blushes again and his face turns a deeper shade of red. “I’d rather not say.”

“Why is your face so red, Oliver?” Kyle smiles and looks directly into Oliver’s eyes.

“I’m feeling a little hot this morning,”  says Oliver with a nervous cautiousness.

“Do ya’ have a fever?” asks Kyle. Kyle places his hand on Oliver’s forehead to check his temperature. “Nope. Ya’ feel normal.”

Oliver’s face becomes contorted in a nervous and mischievous grin. “I’m not sure your checking the right area for that temperature, Dr. Lewis.”

Kyle picks up on Oliver’s point and looks from Oliver’s face to the area in the bed under the sheets below Oliver’s waist and then back to Oliver’s face. “I see, Mr. Fish. How are we goin’ to take care of your sudden problem there?”

“I really hope you have some advice doctor. Ever since I saw some hot guy in a lab coat and some scrubs on a sofa here in this very room my mind has been racing with unimaginable thoughts and then this happened.” Oliver points with his hand to the problem area.

“Hmmm. A very interestin’ problem, Officer Fish. I’m not sure I’ve seen a case like this before. I’ll need to do some closer inspection to identify the cause of the issue. Are ya’ sure you’re up for this? Ya’ did just have major surgery.” Kyle smiles devilishly.

Oliver smiles. “I really think this problem needs some immediate attention. Surgery or no surgery.”

Kyle for a moment debates in his mind if he should do what he is thinking and then moves his right hand below the sheet, lifts Oliver’s hospital gown up and grabs Oliver’s manhood.

Kyle’s touch sends shockwaves through Oliver’s body.  Oliver’s breathing quickens in pace.

Kyle continues to smile. “I do see some heated activity in this area. We need to try and relieve some of the tension.” Kyle completely wraps his hand around Oliver’s manhood and starts moving his hand in an up and down motion.

Oliver closes his eyes and lets out a soft moan.

Kyle watches Oliver’s face as he continues to work on Oliver. Kyle loves this playful, a little nervous and non-prudish side of Oliver. This Oliver drives him all kinds of crazy.

“It appears sir that we may need to also perform some mouth to mouth activity to ensure that you continue to breath in a normal fashion.” Kyle bends down and places his lips over Oliver’s lips. The two get lost in some very passionate kissing. Oliver can feel Kyle’s tongue inside his mouth and moans again in pleasure. Kyle’s hand continues to work its magic and the kissing intensifies.

The hospital room door then opens and Oliver’s mom enters the room. “Good morning, Oliver.” Oliver and Kyle freeze. Barbara instantly takes in the view in front of her, the kissing and the other activity below the sheets. Kyle quickly moves his hand out from under the sheets and lifts his head up from Oliver’s face. Oliver and Kyle look over at Barbara who looks as if she is in a mixture of shock, surprise and displeasure based on her facial expression. “I’ll come back later, Oliver.” Barbara turns and walks back out of the room.

Kyle jumps up from the bed. “Mrs. Fish, please stop.”

“Mom wait,” says Oliver.

Barbara is already out the door.

Within seconds Oliver and Kyle are both taken back in time to a very similar incident that occurred during parents weekend of their senior year of college.

Senior Year of College - Parents Weekend

It is the Friday night before the start of the Parent’s Weekend activities at LU, which starts tomorrow morning with a pancake breakfast to welcome the parents to the university.

Kyle and Oliver are in Kyle’s room laying beside each other on the bed holding hands. The bed linens are pulled down to their waists with their bare chests exposed.  Beer bottles lay around on the floor and the two nightstands that flank the bed.

Oliver turns his head and looks over at Kyle. “I can’t believe parent’s weekend is already here.”

Kyle looks at the ceiling but hears every word Oliver says. “Time does seem to be flyin’ by this year.”

“I’m going to miss you this weekend even though its only a couple of days.”

Kyle is visibly agitated. “It doesn’t have to be that way, Oliver. We can still see each other. We have discussed this before.”

Oliver senses Kyle’s sudden change in mood. “I’m sorry, Kyle. I can’t take the chance with my parents in town. I want you to meet them and I will introduce them to you, but I think we should hold off on the extra curricular activities until they are well on their way out of Llanview.”

Kyle continues to stare at the ceiling as his frustration grows. “Fine, Fish. I’m not goin’ to have this conversation agin. It always ends in the same way. You hidin’ with your parents and me left wantin’ to be with ya’, but unable to even see ya’ until the parents are gone.”

Oliver props himself up on his side so that he can look down into Kyle’s face. “You’ ll still see me. We’ll be at some of the same parents weekend functions.”

“It’s not the same, Fish. It’ll not be like it normally is between us.”

“I’m sorry, Kyle. I know this situation isn’t perfect, but……”

Kyle continues to look up at the ceiling much to Oliver’s dismay and places a finger over Oliver’s mouth. “Lets not talk anymore. We know nothin’ is goin’ to change. Ya’ still can’t accept us or who ya’ are.”

Oliver rolls back on his back and also stares at the ceiling. His anger grows. He hates these moments of time with Kyle. Kyle always seems so disappointed in him when these conversations occur. Oliver then gets mad at himself. Why can he not be the person Kyle wants him to be? Then the fear of his parents finding out sets in again and everything comes back into focus. It has to be this way. Oliver wonders to himself why Kyle has not moved on with another guy who is more open and comfortable with being a boyfriend, let alone having a boyfriend.

Kyle rolls over and blows out the candles on the nightstand next to the bed. “Lets get some sleep. I want this weekend to be over already.” Kyle returns to laying on his back and stares at the ceiling again.

Oliver grimaces. Kyle always gets a final dig in to make his point.

Oliver then rolls onto his side and touches Kyle’s chest with his hand. “We don’t have to go to sleep just yet. We could…..”

Kyle rolls over on his side away from Oliver. “Sleep, Fish. We need to sleep.”

Oliver sighs and lays back down on his back and stares at the ceiling.

Both guys feel the tension in the room as their minds race with thoughts. Oliver wonders why Kyle is so understanding about his situation sometimes and then the complete opposite on other occasions. Kyle wonders why he is so taken with this closeted guy laying next to him in bed. Would Oliver ever change? More importantly if Oliver can’t change, Kyle wonders to himself if he can handle the current structure of their relationship going forward.

Finally about a half hour later, but what seems like hours to both Oliver and Kyle, they drift off into sleep.

On Sunday morning of parent’s weekend Kyle is sitting at his desk doing some reading for his Monday morning class..  He glances out the window of his room. Oliver pops into his mind. He misses him more than he thought possible. It  seems strange to Kyle to be alone, after all he spends almost every night with Oliver. This routine has been happening since their freshman year of college. Yes, Oliver and him had spent nights apart, but not apart and in the same building. Knowing Oliver was right down the hall last night drives Kyle crazy. He could barely get any sleep with the hope that Oliver would come knocking on his door. But the knock never came.

Kyle’s cell phone vibrates on the desk nearby. He picks up the phone. It is a text from Oliver. “Parents are on their way out.  Can’t wait to see you.” Kyle’s spirits are immediately lifted. He races over to the closet and pulls out a pair of jeans to slip on over his boxers. He also changes out of his current t-shirt and puts on a new one from the closet. He then slips on some shoes and takes a quick glance in the mirror  to ensure that he looks okay. Kyle opens his room door and looks down the hall. He sees Oliver saying good-bye to his parents. Oliver hugs his Mom and Dad. Oliver’s parents then turn and head down the hall where they will have to pass Kyle.

They see Kyle standing in the door as they pass.

“It was nice to meet you, Kyle. Oliver is lucky to have found such a good friend,” says Barbara as she passes by. George simply nods his head in agreement with Barbara’s comments. The two continue to head down the hall and turn towards the steps. As soon as they are out of sight Kyle closes his door and walks down the hall to Oliver’s room. Kyle knocks on the door.

Oliver opens the door and sees Kyle. A smile comes across Oliver’s face. “Hey.”

Kyle smiles. “Is Wes here?”

Oliver shakes his head no. “He’s out with his parents. He probably won’t be back until later tonight.”

With those words Kyle barges in closing the door behind him. He grabs Oliver around the waist and brings him into an embrace. No words are spoken between the two as the mouths come together. The intensity of the kisses send shocks of excitement through their bodies. They can feel how much they want each other through their clothing. Oliver pulls off Kyle’s t-shirt. Kyle returns the favor in between more kisses. Kyle kicks off his shoes. Oliver grabs Kyle by the front of his jeans and leads him over to the bed as they continue to kiss. As they stand next to the bed still kissing Oliver unfastens and unzips Kyle’s pants. Kyle removes the pants as fast as possible. They roll around the bed in only their boxer shorts, kissing and grinding with each other. Then the door to Oliver’s room opens.

Barbara enters the room. “Oliver honey, I forgot my gloves. I got all the way downstairs.” Barbara sees the activity on the bed and quickly turns away.

Kyle and Oliver immediately jump up out of the bed realizing they had forgot to lock the door.

Oliver looks over to Barbara. “Mom, I…..”

Kyle panics seeing the look on Oliver’s face.

Oliver is practically in tears.

Kyle looks over at Oliver. ‘I’m going to give you some space so you can talk.”

Oliver does not respond and continues to look over at his Mom.

Kyle grabs his shirt, jeans and shoes (he would soon get back to is room and realize that one of his shoes is missing), quickly gets dressed and races toward the door. As he passes Mrs. Fish he says. “I’m sorry ya’ had to find out this way. I truly am.”

Barbara does not respond and continues to look away from both Kyle and Oliver.

Kyle exits the room closing the door behind him.

Barbara still can’t bring herself to look at Oliver.

“Mom. Let me explain. Please. This isn’t what you think.”

Barbara slowly walks over and grabs her gloves off of Oliver’s desk and turns back towards the door. She grabs the doorknob with her hand.

“Mom, please. Lets talk about this.”

Barbara is still in shock and does not look back at Oliver. “I’ll call you in a few days.”

She opens the door and walks out closing the door behind her.

Oliver’s head is spinning. He can’t believe his Mom just walked in on him with Kyle. The disappointment on her face was like a knife being driven through his heart. Oliver does not know what to do next. He simply stands in the same spot he landed in after getting out of bed and watching the look of horror on his Mom’s face.


A few hours later, Oliver stands outside of Kyle’s room door. He knocks. A few seconds later Kyle comes to the door.

“Hey, Oliver. Are ya’ okay? How’s your Mom? Come on in.”

Oliver doesn’t move. “I can’t come in Kyle.”

The tone in Oliver’s voice is different than normal. It sends the inside of Kyle’s stomach into a whirlwind of fear and discomfort. Kyle knows what Oliver is going to say next and tries to stop him.

“Oliver, please don’t do this. We can talk about it. We’ll figure it out together.”

Oliver wants to run into Kyle’s arms and forget the events of the morning, but after seeing the look on his Mom’s face he knows being with Kyle is a huge mistake.  His Mom’s face would be permanently be engraved in his thoughts. He could not bear to see the disappointment in her eyes. “We can’t see each other anymore.”

“Oliver, don’t. Don’t ya’ dare say that. What about the last three and half years. You’re just going to throw all that away? I need ya’. Please.  Don’t do this to us.” Panic rises in Kyle’s voice as he gets these words out.

“There is no us, Kyle. There never was.”

“I don’t believe that, Oliver. You don’t know what you’re sayin’.”

Oliver begins to lose his courage to say what he came to say. He digs deep and continues.

“Kyle. You need to move on. This, us, whatever we’ve been doing. It disgusts me. It hit me in the face today as I stood there watching my Mom. This is not who I am.”

“This is you, Oliver. When are ya’ goin’ to accept it?”

“There’s nothing to accept. Please don’t talk to me ever again. Please stay away from me. I don’t want to see you anymore.”

Kyle begins to get angry. “We live in the same house, Oliver. We’re goin’ to continue to see each other around. Ya’ can’t avoid me.”

Oliver responds with a stone cold look on his face. “You disgust me, Kyle. I see that now.  I don’t know why it took so long for me to see that.”

Oliver’s words hurt Kyle with a type of hurt he has never felt before. This is not Oliver. He wants his Oliver back.

“Ya’ can’t turn off your feelins and push me away by sayin’ nasty things, Oliver. You’re in my heart. Just like I’m in yours.”

Oliver sighs in frustration. “I’m sorry, Kyle. I don’t want this. I don’t want us. I don’t want you. Please just stay the hell away from me.”

Oliver turns to walk away. Kyle grabs his arm.


Oliver pulls his arm out of Kyle’s grip, looks back and says, “Don’t ever call me that again.”

Oliver walks away.

Kyle’s anger builds and he slams the door shut.

Kyle leans his head against the door and then pounds his fist into the door three or four times. As he hits the door some of the skin breaks over his knuckles and begin to bleed.

Present Day

Kyle hesitates to look over at Oliver. He fears he may see the same look he saw on Oliver’s face that fateful day back in college.

Oliver can’t believe that this is happening again. His Mom’s face looked almost identical to what he saw back in college.

Kyle tries hard to not let his nerves get the better of him. Oliver is out now. It is different than when they were in college. Then why is he feeling so hopeless? Even though he had tried to put the past hurt behind him a twinge of those painful times still resides inside of him.

Oliver begins to laugh. A slow laugh that grows louder over time.

Kyle looks over at Oliver puzzled. “Why are ya’ laughin’?”

Oliver in between laughs responds. “Come on, Kyle. This is kind of funny. I mean what are the odds that my Mom would walk in on us again.” He continues to laugh.

Kyle smiles and walks over to the bed and sits next to Oliver. He glances into his face, but does not see the same shame he saw in Oliver back in college. “I guess so. So this doesn’t freak ya’ out?”

“Well it’s kind of embarrassing to have your Mom walk in when your boyfriend is helping you out with something down south. “ Oliver smiles up at Kyle and the periodic laughs continue.

Oliver’s laughs are contagious and soon the two are laughing together.

Kyle becomes more serious. “Are ya’ sure you’re okay?”

Oliver grabs Kyle’s hand and squeezes it. He looks up into Kyle’s eyes. “This isn’t college. I’m not that person anymore. I want to be with you in every way, You know that.”

Kyle smiles in relief.  He bends down and kisses Oliver. The two get lost for few minutes in each other until Kyle breaks away. He stands and says. “Ya’ made my day today, Oliver Fish. Thank you for not pushing me away this time.”

Oliver cringes as he reflects on his treatment of Kyle after the incident back in college. Wow he said some really hurtful things. He was damn lucky that Kyle could forgive him now. “Thank you.”

“For what?” asks Kyle.

“For being the stronger person. For helping me to stop denying what I feel and for simply being you. For being the man who makes my heart jump every time I think of him.”

Kyle smiles and runs his hand across Oliver’s cheek. “I need to get home. I need to study before my shift starts again later this afternoon. Will ya’ be okay?”

“I’ll be fine. Will I see you later?”

“I’ll stop by before my shift starts.”

Oliver smiles. “A kiss or two for the road.”

Kyle sits backs down on the bed and brings his mouth to Oliver’s again.

There is a knock at the door. The kissing stops, but Kyle remains seated on the bed.

“Come in,”  says Oliver.

Zach peeks around the door with his head before coming into the room. “Hey, Oliver. Up for a visit?” Zach then notices Kyle sitting on the bed. “Oh you have company. I can come back later if you like.”

“Its okay, Zach. Come on in. Kyle is getting ready to leave.”

As Zach enters the room Kyle stands.

“Zach Stafford, this is Kyle Lewis, my boyfriend.”

Kyle looks over at Oliver with surprise and amazement on his face.

Oliver notices Kyle’s expression. “What?”

Kyle. “Nothin’. You’re full of surprises today.” Kyle is impressed. His Oliver just said he was his boyfriend to a work colleague. Wow!

Zach stretches out his hand to shakes Kyle’s hand. “Its nice to meet you.”

Kyle recollecting that he probably should wash his hands. “Hold that thought.”

Kyle runs over to the bathroom and proceeds to wash his hands.

Zach looks over to Oliver. “What’s that about?”

Oliver shrugs his shoulders knowing the reason, but not wanting to discuss it. Oliver is begging Kyle with his mind to hurry up.

Kyle walks out of the bathroom and over to Zach extending his hand. “Sorry about that. Ya’ can’t be too careful with all the H1N1 stuff going around.”

Zach shakes Kyle’s hand. Kyle is impressed with the firm grip.

“Very nice to meet ya’, Zach. Oliver says your new to Llanview.”

“Yes and on my first day of work I go and get your boyfriend shot. “

“Oliver, the hero. What can I say.”

Zach smiles. “Well he’s my hero. I’m very appreciative of what he did for me.”

Oliver is embarrassed. “Its no big deal, Zach. I was just helping out a colleague. You would have done the same for me if the tables had been turned.”

Zach still stands next to Kyle and looks over at Oliver. “Yes I would, but I still owe you my gratitude.”

Kyle notices Oliver’s embarrassment and tries to intervene by changing the course of the conversation. “Well guys. I need to be off. I’ll catch up with ya’ later, Oliver. It’s nice to meet ya’, Zach.” Kyle starts to walk towards the door.

Oliver clears his throat and says. “Excuse me. Are you forgetting something?”

Kyle turns and looks back at Oliver puzzled. “What?”

Oliver smiles. “Are you not going to kiss your boyfriend goodbye?”

Kyle walks over to Oliver with a half smile on his face. He bends down and whispers. “What have you done with Oliver Fish?”

Oliver smiles back. “It’s the new Oliver. Oliver 2.0 at your service.”

Kyle laughs. “You’re too much today.” He kisses Oliver and Oliver returns the kiss. 

Zach watches the kiss, but genuinely does not seem bothered by it.

Kyle breaks away. “Okay, I really have t’ go now.” Kyle runs his hand across Oliver face. “I’ll see ya’ later. Again Zach, it’s nice to meet ya’.” Kyle exits the room.

Zach sits in the chair next to Oliver’s bed. Oliver lifts the bed using the lift adjustment control so that he is sitting up more.

“You guys seems happy.”

Oliver is still a bit uncomfortable talking to a stranger, let alone another cop that he works with, about Kyle. He’s unsure how to respond, but forces himself to spit out some words. “Finally. It’s a long story. We have a lot to work on. The past, thanks mostly to me, was not very kind to us. But I’m sure you didn’t come here to talk about my personal life or my boyfriend.”

Zach shrugs his shoulders. “I don’t mind. Maybe someday you can tell me about it.”

Oliver is slightly shocked by this response. “You would want to listen? Knowing one of your fellow cops is gay doesn’t bother you?”

“Not in the least. My motto is whatever makes you happy.”

“I appreciate that, Zach. Can I ask a favor?”

“Anything, Fish. You saved my life.”

Oliver is embarrassed again. “Stop saying that. I was hoping I could ask you to not say anything else to the other people at work about me being gay. I need to come out on my own terms.”

“My lips are sealed, Fish. Don’t worry. I’m not in the business of outing people. It’s not my style.”

Oliver is really impressed with Zach’s words. “Thank you. I appreciate that!”

Zach stands. “Anytime, man. Listen I need to go. Bad guys are calling this cop to duty. I just wanted to stop by and say thanks again and maybe I can take you to lunch or dinner some time to show my appreciation.”

“You don’t have to do that, Zach. I’m just glad that you’re okay.”

Zach smiles. “I insist and I’ll not take no for an answer. You can even invite Kyle if you like.”

“Okay I’m not going to argue with you.”

Zach lays his hand on Oliver’s arm. “Seriously, man. I really am thankful for what you did for me.”

Oliver smiles as Zach’s hand lingers on his arm. “You’re going to give me a big head or something with all this praise. Get going. The cop shop is calling.”

Zach continues to let his hand rest on Oliver’s arm. There is a moment of quiet tension between the two guys. Zach feels some electricity in his body as his hand touches Oliver’s arm. The lingering hand perplexes Oliver, but he ultimately figures Zach is just saying thank you yet again.

Zach then seems to come out of a trance and removes his hand. “Okay, I’ll catch up with you later, Fish. Getting out of here soon?”

Oliver smiles. “Maybe tomorrow if all goes well.”

“Good for you and you’ll hopefully be home before Thanksgiving.”

“That’s the plan.”

Zach is at the door with it slightly open and looks back at Oliver. “Catch you later, man.”

“Later, Zach.”

As Zach walks out the door Nick comes around the corner not really paying attention to where he is going. The two literally bump into one another.

Nick finally looks up and sees Zach in front of him. “Sorry! I should pay more attention to where I’m going.”

“No problem, Mr. Chavez.”

Nick is impressed that Zach remembers his name. “You can call me Nick. Mr. Chavez is what the kids call me when I substitute teach.”

Zach nods his head. “Nick, it is then. It’s nice to see you again.”

Nick cringes with desire inside. “Likewise.  You don’t need to rush off on my account.”

“I’m not. I’m on duty in half an hour.” Zach looks back at Oliver. “Fish.”

Oliver waves.

Zach turns back to face Nick. “Goodbye, Nick.”

Nick gets lost in Zach’s blue eyes yet again. Nick seems to freeze as he stares into Zach’s eyes.

A sly smile forms on Zach’s face as he realizes Nick is lost in his eyes. “Nick, I really need to go now!”

These words snap Nick out of his trance. “Sorry. Right.” Nick steps out of the door so Zach can pass. Zach continues to smile at Nick and leaves the room. Nick then enters Oliver’s room.

Oliver sees Nick and is puzzled by his appearance. “Kyle isn’t here Nick.”

Nick comes over to Oliver and sits in the chair previously occupied by Zach.  “I came to see you, Oliver.”

“Really? What about?” asks Oliver a little perplexed.

“How are you feeling?”

“I’m fine, Nick. Now what’s the real reason you’re here?”

Nick hesitates. “Kyle is the reason. I need to know that you’re not going to hurt him Oliver.”

Oliver is not sure why, but when Nick says these words he suddenly feels mad and angry. “It’s not my intention to hurt him, Nick.”

“Was it your intention to hurt him college?”

Oliver is troubled by the direction of the conversation. “Things were different then. I’m not the same person.”

Nick stands and paces on the side of the bed where the chair sits. “Just saying you’re ‘out and proud’ does not make you a different person, Oliver. Are you going to be able to kiss Kyle in public, hold his hand in public, invite him to the Llanview PD Christmas party and introduce him as your boyfriend? Kyle wants that type of relationship you know.”

“I don’t need you to tell me what Kyle wants or needs, Nick. He can speak for himself.”

“You’re right. Kyle can speak for himself. But even though it may seem impossible in the short time we were together, I have very real feelings for Kyle. I still care for him immensely. I can’t stand by and do nothing if there is even a slim possibility that you’re going to hurt him again.”

“I appreciate that you care for Kyle. I wanted to even thank you for being with him when I was shot and sticking by his side. It meant a lot to him.”

“I would do anything for Kyle.”

Oliver’s tension mounts. “As would I. I would give my life for him.”

Nick fires back. “You wouldn’t have said that just a little over a month ago.”

“I beg to differ with you, Nick. I like to think that I would say that even being as conflicted as I was. I beat myself up everyday for the way I treated Kyle. He didn’t deserve any of that. I made some big errors in judgment out of fear. Luckily, Kyle has been able to put the past behind him. He’s forgiven me.”

Nick sternly asks. “Can you be the man he needs you to be, Oliver? Are you sure you’re ready for a real relationship with him? This is not college anymore. You’re adults now.  Do you even know how to make him happy? Do you know what makes him tick? Do you know why he gets into some crazy situations sometimes? Look I don’t mean to be a downer. I hope it works out for you guys. I really do, but if there is any doubt in your mind I’m begging you to deal with it now or back out before you hurt him again. He doesn’t deserve to be treated poorly by you yet again. He didn’t deserve it the first time.”

“Are you done, Nick? I’m tired and need to get some rest.”

Nick stops pacing and stands by the bed. “I’m sorry if I hit a nerve, Oliver. I think you need to ask yourself some of these questions. Kyle is way too special to be just be tossed away when  your fear gets in the way.”

“Why can’t you trust in Kyle? He’s willing to put himself out there again and give me a chance.”

“I trust, Kyle. I simply don’t trust you. I know first hand the very real pain you caused him.”

Oliver looks away from Nick. “Please leave. I think you’ve made your point.”

“I guess your right. Think about what I said. If there is even one little doubt about being with Kyle or accepting yourself, please back away now. Let him have some true happiness.”

“With you right, Nick?”

“With whoever makes him happy, Oliver. I’ll see you around.”

Nick exits the room.

For the next few hours Oliver repeats the conversation with Nick over and over in his head. His starts to doubt himself and his ability to make Kyle happy. The fear and doubt quickly gain control over Oliver’s thoughts. Oliver finally drifts off to sleep. His last thought being that he could not risk hurting Kyle again. Maybe Nick had a point. Maybe he could not be the man that Kyle needed.

Later that afternoon before the start of his shift at the hospital Kyle stops by to visit Oliver.

Kyle smiles as he walks into the room. ‘Hey you!”

Oliver looks up and Kyle sees the fear back in control all over Oliver’s face.

“We need to talk, Kyle,” says Oliver.

The smile fades from Kyle’s face.

Kyle shakes his head in a back and forth motion as he looks over to Oliver. “Not again, Oliver. I’m not going to let ya’ do this.”

Oliver looks away from Kyle. “I’m not sure this is going……”

Kyle walks to the other side of the bed to look Oliver in the eyes. “No, Fish. This isn’t happenin’ again.” Kyle pleads with his eyes for Oliver to talk to him as the anger begins to churn inside.