Archive-title: Playing in the Major Leagues - 5
Chapter 5. Love: Rafael and me
I was about a bit less than midway between Savannah, Georgia
and the turnoff to Charleston, South Carolina, headed north on I-
95. It was an unusual time of day. There few trucks or cars on the
road because it was close to lunchtime. I still had a long way to
drive that afternoon and already I was sleepy. I almost didn't see
the boy. He was standing by the side of the road, near one of the
overpasses that occur every mile or so as the inlets and rivers
forge inland from the coast. I was doing close to 85 m.p.h., sitting
back in the leather Recarro seat of my Porsche 928, listening to
my favorite ancient-history Rolling Stones tape, and holding the
steering wheel with two fingers while I played the guitar, or
rather pretended to play. The music was about 20 decibels higher
than the human threshold for auditory pain, the necessary volume
to get a mental high from the Stones.
I glanced at the kid as he blurred past and just caught the
slight movement of his thumb as he gestured. For an instant I was
unsure whether I should stop. I was miles from anywhere and it
probably wasn't a good idea to go around picking up young kids by
the side of the freeway. Nonetheless, I stomped on the brakes and
tightened both hands on the wheel, simultaneously checking in the
rear-vision mirror to see whether anyone was close behind me.
There wasn't a car in sight behind and there was only one car
in front and it was probably a mile or so ahead. A Porsche under
hard breaking gives an incredible feeling. There's a kind of
whommph as the huge disk brakes with their dual calipers lock onto
the ventilated disks and the air behind the car comes rushing past.
The enormous low-profile tires grip the blacktop and the car slams
to a stop so fast that you feel yourself pushed forward into the
seat until the seat-belt takes up the slack.
I engaged reverse gear and backed up, the exhaust gurgling
loudly. I stopped the car opposite the kid. The boy was small, maybe
nine or ten. It was hard to tell, perhaps he was even younger. He
looked at me as he slowly walked over to the car. "You want a lift
kid?" I asked. Up close, I guessed the boy was about ten years old.
He was dark, his bronze-colored complexion and dark brown hair a
clear sign that he was probably Mexican, Cuban, or, more likely,
part Puerto Rican given his facial features. His right eye and most
of his cheek were badly bruised and it looked as if he'd been in a
fight and come off second best. The boy looked at me suspiciously.
"You okay kid?" I asked. "You look like hell."
He smiled weakly and gently rubbed his fingers across his
bruised eye, then blinked several times. It obviously still hurt a
lot. "Yeah,... I guess I'm okay. Could you give me a lift, mister?"
he said slowly. He was barely able to support himself and he leaned
against the car with his small dirty hand on the door pillar.
I nodded and leaned over and opened the door. The boy sat down
slowly as if he was in a great deal of pain. He winced as his body
met the smooth black leather and he adjusted to the necessary
contour. Then he breathed out, half-closing his eyes. "You okay
kid?" I asked again.
The boy nodded and swallowed as he breathed fast and shallow.
If there is one thing that young boys like, it's going fast in a
car. I decided to give my little hitchhiker the thrill of his life.
I engaged first gear and pulled back off the shoulder, accelerating
rapidly through the gears and letting the quad-cam V8 whine up to
five and half thou' before shifting. The Porsche hurtled forward.
Its acceleration seemed endless as the needle of the speedometer
passed the ten mile increments just about every second until I
backed off at cruising altitude. I glanced sideways at the boy. For
the first time I realized that the boy was very good looking. Even
with the bruise on his face he was one hell of a good looking kid.
He was the kind of kid that could do fashion ads. The kind of cute
kid that mothers just love. The kind of boy that young girls swoon
over and that men like me fantasize about. His dark hair was unkempt
but it still glistened. His smooth skin had a bronze lustre. His
eyes were dark, nearly black, and contrasted sharply against the
vivid white. The boy slumped back in the seat. He breathed heavily,
still swallowing, and his brow was dotted with beads of
perspiration despite the fact that the a/c was going and the car
was pretty cool inside.
"You sure you feel okay?" I asked. You'd have to be blind not
to realize that the boy was sick. He looked as though he might pass
out any minute.
He shook his head slightly and sniffed loudly and then closed
his eyes completely as yet another wave of pain came over him. The
boy shivered as if he was cold and the sweat on his forehead
increased quickly. I looked away, back to the road as I passed a
truck and trailer. Suddenly the boy winced and let out a small
groan. I looked back at him. His upper lip was moist and he was
breathing very quickly now, taking short gasps of air that never
reached his lungs. "I'm gonna,... gonna be sick,... I think,...
Mister," he moaned.
The last thing I wanted was kid-vomit all over my car, even
from a boy as cute as this one was. There was a a sign up ahead for
a rest stop. It was one of those old rest stops without services,
a mile away. A mile away, less than sixty seconds. "Can you wait a
minute," I asked, ready to slam the car to a stop again if he said
he couldn't make it that far.
The boy nodded weakly and his small hand moved to cover his
mouth. Bad sign. I accelerated and let the speed pick up to ninety.
Forty-five seconds. Thirty seconds. The boy's breathing was coming
in spurts. Twenty seconds. He was trembling, his little hands
shaking. Ten seconds and I got ready to jump hard on the brakes as
I rocketed into the exit ramp. The boy was going to retch any second
and I could see him taste the bile as it rose in his throat. Five
seconds and the car started sliding sideways on the gravel with
stones flying out in all directions. The car stopped and the boy
tried frantically to open the door but he was unsure of how the
door handle worked. I thought about leaning over past him and
opening it but I changed my mind and I opened my own door and jumped
I ran to the other side of the car and jerked his door open.
The boy looked up at me, too frightened to move as vomit rose up
his throat and into in his mouth. I realized that he was too weak
to raise himself up. I held his head, touching his soft dark hair,
and pulled his head toward me and out over the door sill towards
the ground. The boy shuddered violently, gagged for a second, and
then his vomit seemed to pour out. There was a horrible choking
sound and then deep long sobs that rose up from deep in his chest.
Then more vomit. The sweet sick smell rose up from the ground and
from where it had splattered over the side of the car. I felt his
small body heaving as he shuddered with each spasm. In those few
terrible minutes I was suddenly very aware of how fragile the boy
was. He seemed very young and I began to rub his back gently,
letting my fingers travel from the end of his spine all the way up
to his neck to brush the long silky-soft hair lightly before going
downwards again. He recovered very slowly, wiping his nose with the
back of his hand and smearing away the vomit from his mouth as he
began to breath more normally. I gave him my handkerchief. The
boy's face had become very pale and I could see that he was still
in a great deal of pain.
"You okay, kid?" I asked again stupidly. It was obvious he was
anything but okay. "Where does it hurt?"
The boy looked at me distrustfully. His jaws were shaking and
I knew that he was still tasting his own vomit. "I,...
I,...It,...", he groaned. I reached forward and tenderly brushed
the dark hair back from his forehead, smoothing his eyebrows as I
wiped the sweat from his forehead.
"You want me to take you to the hospital?" I asked.
He shook his head abruptly. How stupid could I be. If there
was one thing ten-year-old boys hated it was the hospital, closely
followed by the dentist and the doctor. "What's wrong? Maybe I can
help?" I said gently as my thumb stroked his small soft cheek and
wiped away the wet stains of his tears.
"It hurts,... down there,..." he breathed out. The boy pointed
to between his legs. I must have been blind. For the first time I
noticed the dark stain that had spread over the boy's crotch. The
blue denim of his shorts was dirtied and nearly grey.
"What's wrong?" I asked again.
The boy swallowed, "Hurts,... real bad mister."
I nodded, uncertain of what to do next. "You want me to look?"
The boy looked up at me suddenly, questioningly. Slowly he
decided that he could trust me. He nodded his head a fraction of
an inch. Very carefully I unfastened the boy's woven red-leather
belt. The clasp was harder to get to and I fumbled with it clumsily
for a long while before I finally opened it. As I slowly pulled
down his zipper the boy trembled. He breathed in sharply as my
clumsy fingers brushed against the small bulge in his groin. I
tried to pull the zipper upward and away from his body as I eased
it down. Through the V of his open shorts I could see that the boy
had white Fruit-of-the-Loom underpants on, only they weren't white
The dark stain in his blue shorts was a red-brown stain on his
underpants. It covered most of the front. It was still damp in the
front, below the horizontal pocket in front of the boy's genitals.
It was very clear that the boy had sustained some sort of injury
to his groin. I looked up at the boy, seeking his permission to
remove his shorts. He nodded as he continued to rub his badly
bruised eye with the back of his thumb. From the wet streaks on his
cheeks I realized that the boy was crying very quietly. Very
carefully I placed my hand under his back and pushed forward to
lift his buttocks off the seat. With my other hand I eased his
shorts down. He winced in pain as I carefully pulled his underpants
up and away from his groin. The cotton was stuck slightly to his
flesh and I had to peel it away.
What I saw was not pretty. The boy's penis was leaking reddish
fluid, not blood because it wasn't thick enough. His little penis
was a dark purple. It was badly bruised and puffed up like a fat
little sausage. But it was the other part of his anatomy that
frightened me. His scrotum was nearly black and it was swollen to
the size of a golf-ball, the skin stretched so tightly that it was
almost transparent. "God what happened to you?" I breathed out.
The boy followed my gaze downward, looking at his injury
absently, as if he didn't care any longer, "It hurts," he cried.
I was afraid to touch the boy's genitals, there was nothing I
could do there by the side of the road anyway. "Look, I'm going to
take you to the hospital."
"Don't wanna go,... not to no hospital mister,... okay?...
Please?" the boy pleaded.
I wondered what the boy was afraid of. "You don't have much
choice kid. This looks really bad." I closed the car door and went
around to the driver's side and dropped down into my seat.
I started the engine and engaged first gear and accelerated
back on the freeway. Only this time I drove a lot slower than before
because I knew now that the boy was in considerable pain. God only
knew where the next exit was that had a hospital. Ten miles up the
road I passed an exit. Like most exits in this part of the country
there was nothing but a gas station and a road to nowhere. Another
ten miles and then a sign that indicated two gas stations and a
restaurant. I thought about getting off and asking about the
location of the nearest hospital. Right before I passed the exit I
saw a small green sign that said 'hospital this exit'. I swerved
the car across the two lanes and careened onto the off ramp. The
boy looked at me angrily as he saw the sign.
"Look I'm sorry kid. I don't know what else to do, I think you
need a doctor worse than you realize." I glanced at the boy as I
came up to the stop sign. I didn't stop and made a quick right-hand
turn on the county road.
"What's your name anyway?" I asked.
" I can't keep calling you kid can I," I answered.
That elicited a small weak smile from the boy. "Rafael," he
said, his voice little more than a whisper. There was something
wrong with the boy's voice. He spoke quietly, almost whispering as
though he was hoarse or his throat was sore.
"Hi Rafael!" I said gently, "My name is John".
I reached my left hand across to the boy. He looked at it
suspiciously and then he smiled slowly as he allowed me take his
small moist hand. We didn't shake. I just squeezed lightly.
"They were gonna kill me," the boy blurted out.
I looked at the boy in surprise, "Huh? What did you say? Who
was going to kill you?"
The boy looked away furtively, "The men who left me there,...
Near the freeway.... I got away...."
I overshot the turnoff to the 'hospital' and I braked quickly.
I reversed back up to the intersection. "What men?" I asked. But
the boy had said enough and his jaws were clamped tightly together.
A minute later I pulled up in the driveway of a small clinic,
certainly not a 'hospital' by any stretch of the imagination. It
was a single story building with window air-conditioners buzzing
loudly. I turned off the engine and leaned over the boy and very
carefully eased his shorts and underpants back up and closed his
zipper. I went around to his side and lifted him out of the car.
He was very light and I easily carried him up the three stairs and
into the reception room.
An overweight receptionist came around from behind her desk
as I stood there looking around me impatiently. She moved like a
sloth. "The boy's been injured," I said abruptly. "He needs a
The woman nodded, "Well now,... and just what,... is the
matter,... with him?" she drawled in a deep-southern accent.
"He's in a great deal of pain," I said. I breathed out trying
to control my rising temper. "Can you just get a doctor, NOW?" I
My raised voice was enough to bring a nurse-type out from an
adjoining room, "What's the problem here? What's wrong with the
boy?" she asked with concern.
"I don't know. He's been injured. Seriously I think. It looks
like he's been kicked in the groin or something. I found him up the
road about twenty miles."
"Oh! Well bring him right this way, and Susie, you get on that
phone and find the doctor, NOW! Move it!" the nurse said. The
receptionist moved a little faster than before though it was only
I carried Rafael into the surgery and placed the boy gently
on the examining table. I stayed by the boy's side, holding his
hand gently as the nurse took his temperature and blood pressure.
I could see that she was worried. In just the minute since I had
first carried him in, the boy had become even paler. I helped lift
him up and the nurse tried to ease his shorts down, The boy yelped
then began to cry as his underpants started to come away. She picked
up a pair of scissors and carefully cut through the cloth at the
sides of the boy's hips and then peeled the front section away. "Oh
my God!" the nurse said softly as soon she saw the boy's injury.
A moment later tires squealed outside the building and a
doctor came hurrying into the surgery. He took one quick glance at
the boy on the table and then talked quickly with the nurse. Finally
he turned to me. "I'm sorry would you mind stepping outside for a
while," he said quietly.
Rafael opened his eyes and began to shiver and shake his head.
"No... No... Please?... I want him here," he begged.
I glanced at the doctor. I could tell from his expression that
my presence in the surgery was a disruption and that serious work
was required. I was going to be in the way. "No Rafael, I'll be
right outside. I'll be here in the next room, okay?" I said as I
stepped back toward the door.
The minutes passed slowly. I wanted to go back inside and make
sure that the boy was all right. For some strange reason it seemed
as if the boy's well being was very important to me though I knew
nothing about him other than his first name. I flicked through a
few dog-eared magazines, unable to read more than a few words. The
air-conditioner kept buzzing and switching on and off. I waited for
a long while, unsure as to whether I should just get up and leave,
but something kept me there. I had a feeling that I was somehow
responsible for the boy. All I could think about was the terrible
minutes as he leaned out of my car and vomited, the choking sound
that went on and on and the softness of his dark hair.
The nurse came out of the surgery where I had carried the boy
a few times. She smiled or nodded to me and disappeared down the
corridor always returning with several small packages. I became
increasingly nervous. I had no wish to stick around. I'd done my
'Good Samaritan' act and the boy was in a hospital, more like a
clinic, but at least he was getting medical attention. I hoped that
he was all right, though somehow, deep down inside, I knew he
wasn't. The memory of his nearly-black swollen scrotum haunted me.
It must have been terribly painful for him. I remembered the
reddish liquid that leaked from his penis, not red enough to be
just blood, but obviously there was a lot of blood in it.
I looked over at the receptionist. She smiled and nodded, is
that all they did here, smile and nod? A moment later she stood up
and came over to me. "You want some coffee,... or somethin'?" she
I shook my head, "No thanks! Is the boy okay? I really have
to get back on the road," I asked, "I'm running late enough as it
She smiled, "I'm sorry. I don't know anything yet. I'm sure
the boy is doin' jus' fine. The doctor's been with him for a while
now." She went back to her cubicle-office. I sat back in the seat,
still wondering if I should leave. Except for the hum of the air-
conditioner, the room was quiet. Minutes passed slowly. Soon half-
an-hour, then nearly an hour later a man came out of the room where
we had taken the boy. He was dressed in a white lab-coat. The
obligatory stethoscope was around his neck, pens and thermometer
were in his breast pocket. He came straight over to me.
"Hello, you're the man who brought the boy in here?" he asked
"Yes," I said, "How is he?"
"I'm Doctor Webster," he said, extending his hand. I didn't
say anything but merely shook hands with the man. "He's good
enough,... considering. He should be in a hospital. His condition
has stabilized now. What happened to him?" he asked.
I breathed out, "I don't know. I found the boy by the side of
the road, I-95 going north. I guess about twenty miles from this
exit. He seemed okay when I picked him up but I guess he was in a
lot of pain because he started crying a few minutes later. I got
off at the first rest-stop. That's the old one before this exit.
He vomited quite a bit. That's when he showed me,... well, what had
happened to him. I brought him straight here. Other than that I
know nothing about him."
The doctor nodded thoughtfully. "He say's his name's Rafael.
That's all he'll tell me. He's been injured pretty badly. Do you
have any idea what happened to him?"
I shook my head, "That's what he told me too. The boy wouldn't
tell me anything else. I asked him, I think he's scared stiff."
The doctor nodded, "He's in shock. That kind of injury can be
very traumatic. Well, I think you better come into my office.
There's a few things we should discuss. We need to figure out what
to do. I have no idea of how to contact his parents. And we need
to contact the police."
I followed the doctor along the corridor. He turned into the
third door on the right and closed the door after I had entered.
He turned and went back to his desk, talking as he crossed the room.
"I don't know whether I should be telling you this. You obviously
cared enough to bring the boy here. I gather you've seen the
injuries he sustained. Right now the boy is doing about as good as
can be expected, considering what happened to him. From the look
of his injury I'd say he's been kicked very hard in the groin,...
a number of times. It looks like it happened two or three days ago.
The injuries are quite bad. I've only seen one case as bad as this
and that was when one of the local boys got kicked by a horse. It
can do a lot of damage. Your boy's lucky to be alive, another few
days and he wouldn't be here."
I sighed, "Poor little bugger. I hope he's going to be
alright. How bad,... is it?"
The doctor nodded, "His bladder was damaged and it was
extremely full. He probably hasn't urinated since he was injured.
That's not unusual in this kind of injury, but bladder failure can
have serious consequences. I catheterized his penis and drained off
the bladder. I don't know how much of his injury you've seen.
There's a lot of bruising on the penis, but that will go away pretty
quickly. It's remarkable how sturdy the penis is. His testicles are
quite a different matter."
I nodded, "He was almost black there. I think that's what
scared me so badly, that and the fact that it was all swollen up
like a golf-ball."
The doctor got up from his chair and walked over to the window.
Outside, a magnolia tree covered with Spanish moss filtered the
light and gave a deep shade to the room. "The boy will be in a lot
of pain for quite a while. Right now he's on cortisone treatment
to bring down the swelling and an anticoagulant. Um," He paused as
he consulted the notes before him, "Dicumarol. Hopefully it can
break down the blood clotting that has occurred in his testicles.
The problem is that he'd shouldn't be given a pain killer,
something like Acetaminophen, at the same time.
"Why?" I asked.
"It increases the effect of the anticoagulant. It can be hard
to determine the end result, but it's very likely that the
testicular bleeding might start again. I've drained the boy's
scrotum already. The fluid buildup is what caused most of the
swelling of course. The boy's testicles are still very distended.
The Alclometasone, that's the cortisone-based drug, will take care
of that in a few days. Anyway, right now he doesn't have anything
for the pain so he's going through hell. In a few hours I'll put
him on Diazepam to help with the trauma he's going through. I don't
want the boy sedated until his condition has stabilized a bit
I nodded. "How bad was he hurt, Doctor?"
The man looked out of the window for a while, then turned back
to me. "Bad enough. It's hard to tell at this stage. It's very
likely, most likely, that the boy has been permanently damaged."
"Damaged how?" I asked awkwardly as I shifted uncomfortably
in my seat.
"In injuries of this type, as bad as this, well there's always
some loss of testicular function." He looked at me. "How severe it
is depends. Usually if the swelling comes down quickly and there
isn't too much clotting in the testes then there is no impairment
of the function, or very little." I nodded. "In his case, the
clotting has been very bad. As I said, from the look of the bruising
I'd say that it happened maybe two days ago. Frankly I'd be
surprised if any testicular function remains."
"Meaning what, Doctor? He's likely to be sterile?"
"Honestly? Yes! I'd say that was more than likely. At his age,
I'd guess he's about nine-and-a-half or ten, and the extent of the
damage, I'd say there's about a ninety to ninety-five percent
chance of that."
"Poor little bugger," I breathed out.
"Yes, you could say that I think. Being sterile is only half
I shook my head sadly, "What's that mean?"
"I'm sure you know that the testes produce more than sperm.
They also play a vital role in the boy's physical development," the
"I know that. You mean....."
"The Leydig cells are interstitial cells between the
seminiferous tubes that produce sperm. The reduction in blood
supply caused by the clotting and the amount of crushing that has
occurred is going to result in considerable cell deterioration."
"What in the hell does that mean?" I asked impatiently.
Doctor Webster smiled in resignation. "I've only seen one case
as bad as this. I told you about the boy that was kicked by the
horse. He's sixteen now. He's been on hormone therapy for the last
two years so that his body undergoes the maturation process that
normally starts with puberty."
"Oh! You mean that,... Rafael,...?"
The doctor nodded and breathed out. "'Fraid so. If anything
his injury is a lot worse because it hasn't been treated for so
I shook my head sadly as I thought of the little boy vomiting
from the side of my car and his tears running down his cheeks as
he heaved again and again. "How can you be sure it's that bad? I
mean kicks to the groin aren't that unusual."
"A kick, like most boys might get in say a game of football,
might be painful for an hour. This boy was kicked repeatedly and
very deliberately. Whoever did it to him wanted to hurt him very
badly. But you're right. Short of biopsy there is no way of being
certain and that would defeat the purpose wouldn't it." The doctor
smiled weakly. "By the time the boy is fourteen or so, the extent
of the damage will start to appear." He smiled resignedly, "Or
I nodded. "Meaning that the changes that are going to occur
at puberty will either happen or not happen."
"That's the general idea. At that point, a program for hormone
therapy can be started." The doctor paused. He walked over and
stood by the window, looking outside. I could see him thinking. He
turned back. "Do you know anything about what happened to him?"
I looked up in surprise. "Huh? No! I picked him up on the
freeway and brought him straight here. He didn't say anything. Just
getting his name was a problem. He did say one thing though."
"What was that?"
"He said something about men trying to kill him," I answered.
"The boy has been sexually assaulted," the doctor said quietly
"Oh God!" I breathed out in shock.
"There are some very bad anal fissures. The tears in the boy's
anus are the type that result from intercourse. He might have been
raped. It's hard to tell if it was forced," the doctor added.
"Is it bad?" I asked.
"No, not really. I would say it happened a few days ago. By
the end of the week there won't be any sign. The anus heals very
quickly. Even in a young boy like, uh, Rafael, there is a great
capacity for the anal muscles to stretch. The damage to his rectum
usually isn't that serious. The rectum is remarkably tough. Unless
there is excessive force the worst damage is a fissure or two. We're
treating him with just a protective coating of Zinc Oxide. That
kind of damage doesn't happen if he's been with another boy. It's
very likely to have been caused by a grown man." The doctor looked
at me curiously. "There's also a lot of old bruising around the
boy's anus. I'd say he's been sexually active for quite a while.
He might have been hustling, though he's a bit young for that I
would say. Still, you'd be surprised how much of that we get around
here. Maybe the boys just get bored and the money's good with the
tourists. I must see a case like this every month or so."
I nodded. "It sounds like New York City," I said.
"The boy should have an Aids test in about four weeks. He might
be positive." I nodded again. "I've also given him a Hepatitis B
injection. He might have already been inoculated though he's too
old to be on the standard program. We've started a program
nationwide for children that play sports and for newborns. Children
at risk, like this boy, need it even more but they're usually the
last to get it."
I stood up, deciding that this was a good time to leave. "Well
Doctor Webster, I'd like to thank you. I just wanted to make sure
that the boy was in good hands. "
The doctor came closer to me so that he stood only a few feet
away. "I'm sure the boy appreciates the trouble that you've gone
to. He's been asking about you for the last hour. He wasn't at all
happy with you outside the surgery. The boy's had a rough time and
it'll get even worse when he's told what has happened to him."
"I'm sorry doctor. There really isn't much I can do. I'll
leave my name with the receptionist and an address where I can be
contacted if you need it for the police. I'm already about an hour
late for a meeting." I turned and started walking to the door.
"Would you mind, just a few more minutes? I know the boy would
like to see you before you leave."
I looked around. I could picture the little boy as he sat in
the seat of my car, his hand clasped over his mouth as the sweat
poured from his face. I breathed out. I knew that the boy had been
in terrible pain and that his life, in one very important way,
probably had been destroyed. The least I could do was go and say
I nodded. The doctor smiled. "I'm glad. It's going to be very
difficult for the boy as he begins to understand what happened. He
needs all the support he can get."
"Does he know yet?" I asked.
"More or less. He knows his testicles have been badly damaged
but I don't think he fully understands what it means yet. He knows
that his testes are a very important part of him but that's about
I followed the doctor back into the corridor and we walked
towards the surgery. The boy was no longer inside and the doctor
went into the adjoining room. Rafael was half-sitting up in the bed
with his back against a pillow. The boy leaned over to one side.
His eyes were closed. A plastic I-V tube was taped to his right
arm. For the first time I really saw the terrible bruise across the
right side of his face. The eye was blackened. The little boy looked
so helpless that I wanted to hold him tightly. Slowly his eyes
opened and he blinked as he realized that we were standing next to
him. I could see that he was only a few seconds from crying as he
trembled. A little whimper of pain and anguish and then the first
tears began to form in his eyes.
"Hi!" I said gently. "How do you feel, Rafael?"
The boy looked up at me and slowly sucked on his bottom lip.
"It hurts,... Down there," he whispered.
I nodded. "I'm sorry. The doctor tells me he'll give you
something for the pain soon."
"The anaesthetic is beginning to wear off," the doctor said
to the nurse. "Let's try a cold pack for a while and see it that
The nurse nodded and left the room. While she was gone I looked
at the boy. The sheet reached just past his navel. Above, the boy
was naked. It was impossible not to admire the splendid young body.
His skin was a golden brown and unblemished by even the smallest
freckle. His nipples were pale and very tiny. He was lithe and
slender and firm taut muscles rippled under his skin. He was also
surprisingly attractive. No beautiful, so beautiful that I could
not take my eyes away. There seemed to be a magnetism that drew me
back time and time again. His eyes were big and dark and seemed
mysterious. His eyes were sensuous and as soon as the thought
entered my mind I was shocked. The young boy was both beautiful and
very, very sexy. I felt guilty.
Time and time again I tried to look away but each time my eyes
were pulled back to him. As each second ticked by I could feel
myself drawn to him. I could barely believe the intensity of my
desire and I was shocked that I was being so sexually aroused by a
little boy. Slowly I realized that my feelings were more than just
sexual. I wanted the boy as my son, as the son I had never had. I
wanted him to be my friend, someone that I could teach and help and
love. For more than two minutes that boy and I looked at each other
silently. In those few short minutes the first bonds between us
were formed. The nurse interrupted us by coming back with an cold
pack. Suddenly I was aware that the doctor was still beside me and
that he had been watching our silent communication.
The doctor started to lift away the sheet that covered the
boy's body when Rafael looked up at me in despair and then back to
the nurse who stood only a few feet away. The modesty of the ten-
year-old boy had just returned. I smiled reassuringly. "Ah, Doctor,
I think my young friend here wants some privacy."
The boy breathed out gratefully.
The doctor nodded. "Kathy, I think our patient might like a
drink of lemonade."
The nurse smiled. Ten-year-old boys were like that. One minute
they were totally uninhibited, the next, terribly modest. The boy
had just spent the last hour stark naked in the surgery and now he
was worried about the woman seeing him. She left as the doctor
gently pulled down the sheet. I swallowed and felt my rage building
as I saw the boy's injuries again. The 'golf-ball-size' scrotum had
deflated. It was still an ugly purple and black color but at least
most of the swelling had gone. Little more than an hour ago it had
looked as if it would burst any second. The boy's little penis was
also badly bruised. It seemed awfully small. There was a thin
rubber catheter inserted into the tiny orifice in his foreskin. It
drained into a plastic flask that lay between the boy's slender
thighs, taped to one leg. I gasped as I saw that the flask was half-
full of dark brown fluid.
The doctor nodded as he saw my concern. "There's been some
localized damage to his bladder. The blood is breaking away now.
That's what's making it so dark."
"Oh!" I said quietly. I took a deep breath and let it out
slowly. It was impossible to believe that anyone could inflict
damage like this on a child. Even the boy's lower belly was darkened
by the black and blue shades of bruises. There was also a lot of
bruises on the insides of the boy's thighs. It was impossible not
to feel a deep sadness for the boy.
The doctor carefully placed the cold-pack next to the boy's
little scrotum so that it was against the badly damaged flesh.He
stood up and sighed. "I have to go visit some of my other patients
at a rest home. I'll be gone for a few hours. The nurse, Kathy,
will be here of course. She'll get anything you want. I'll be back
later this afternoon to check on the boy. Then we'll make the call
to the police."
As he moved towards the door I followed him and thanked him
for all that he had done to help the boy. He shrugged. "Poor little
kid. He's ready to break. I don't know what's happened to him over
the last few months but whatever it is, he's a survivor. His parents
ought to be in jail for letting this happen." I followed the doctor
out into the reception area as he continued to talk. "Do what you
can to find out what happened to him. The boy trusts you and right
now you're all he's got. We tried to find out where he was from
when we were working on him but he clammed up. All he wanted was
for you to come back in. Just sit by him for a while. He needs to
have you near him."
I nodded, took the two lemonades from the nurse and went back
into the room where the boy was. He looked around and smiled weakly
as he saw me. Rafael would be a very easy boy to become fond of. I
walked over to the bed and sat down gently next to him. The doctor
was right. The boy needed a friend more that anything else right
now. He lifted his hand to take the lemonade but it was obvious
that he wasn't able to. His hand quivered and as he tried to close
it on the glass he almost dropped it. I smiled and held it to his
lips and he sipped a little bit. We sat together very quietly for
a long while before the boy finally dozed off. I sat very still and
watched the boy's chest rise and fall with barely perceptible
Rafael awoke about an hour later. "Hi Raf," I said. The boy's
mouth dropped open in surprise. "What's wrong?" I asked.
"Nothin'. 's just a friend of mine used to call me that."
"Oh! I'm sorry. Would you rather that I call you Rafael?" I
The boy shook his head slightly. "Na! It's okay. I like you
calling me that."
"How do you feel?" I asked.
"It still hurts. I wish it would stop."
I gently patted the boy's small bare shoulder. He was warm to
touch, almost hot. I wondered whether he was feverish and I placed
my hand on his forehead. The boy definitely felt hot. There was a
moist feeling to his skin and he seemed to be shivering slightly.
"I'm sorry about the pain," I said.
The boy sucked on his bottom lip and then swallowed. He was
clearly in a great deal of pain but he was bravely holding his own.
I felt very close to the boy, almost proud as he fought back tears.
He was a little boy trying very hard not to be. "'s okay," he
"Is there anything I can do, Raf?" I said gently. The boy
shrugged then looked away.
"If you wanna go it's okay." he whispered. "I'll be okay.
Thank's for helping me mister. Thank's for the ride too. I hope I
didn't mess up your car."
I smiled and then I leaned forward and lovingly caressed his
hair. It was soft and silky under my fingers. "I'm not going to
leave. I'm staying here right next to you until you walk out of
here or we find you parents."
"I don't have no parents," the boy said quietly. "I don't have
"Anyone," I automatically corrected him. "Where are you from?"
I asked. The boy was quiet for a long while. "Did you run away? Is
that why you're alone?" The boy looked up at me and then back to
"I kinda ran away," he said at last. "I live in a home for
boys." He looked back at me. I could feel his dark eyes searching
mine as he tried to decide whether he could trust me. I continued
to stroke his soft fine hair.
"You don't have to tell me if you don't want," I said. The boy
swallowed and then compressed his lips together firmly, resolutely.
"I'd like you to trust me," I continued. "But I know it's hard.
Sometimes it really helps to talk about the things that bother us."
"Centerville. Its an orphanage outside Miami." he whispered.
I nodded. "Is that where you're from? How did you get here?
Where I found you."
"Uh... I sorta got into trouble. Not at Centerville. I was
trying to get back there and some guys picked me up. They're going
to kill me."
I looked at the boy in surprise. "Yes. That's what you said
in the car. I think you have to tell me more. It isn't that I don't
believe you. I do! Why are they trying to kill you?"
"I seen Luis,..... kill someone.... A little girl." The boy
looked at me and I could see the fear in his small face.
"You're safe now," I said.
"No I'm not. They'll find me here. I got away. They have to
kill me 'cause I know what happened."
"Well," I said, "when the doctor gets back we'll call the
police. You'll be okay."
"I don't want the police. They'll make me go back to
Centerville. I know they will."
I tried my best to sound confident and reassuring but the boy
was very frightened. "I'm going to stay right beside you, Raf.
Whoever they are, they have no idea where you are right now."
The boy nodded as he followed my argument. He slowly calmed
down a little bit but the fear didn't disappear. It stayed as a
constant reminder of what he'd been through. His fear would stay
for a long while. I continued to stroke his hair and he leaned over
towards me so that his side was closer to me. I wanted to hug the
little boy. I wanted to take away all of his pain and fear.
Mustering my courage I placed my arms around his narrow chest and
leaned forward over him. I hugged him gently. I could feel him
trembling, fluttering almost like a tiny frightened bird. Not
trying to escape but terribly afraid.
When he spoke his voice was strained and barely more than a
whisper. "The doctor,... said my balls were hurt real bad. I,...
I nodded and continued to hug the hot little body against me.
There was something wonderful that I felt as I held him. I aware
of his soft smooth skin and the heat that flowed from his bare brown
body and through my shirt. I also felt close to him. What I felt
inside was much more than simply an attraction to his young body
though I could not deny that was part of it. I felt a powerful need
to protect the boy. I wanted to love him and have him love me in
return. I wanted Rafael to become a part of my life. I remembered
the doctor saying that Rafael might well be a hustler. While that
thought saddened me I realized that it really didn't matter to me.
What has happened in his past was only important in so far as it
affected his future. I wanted his future to be with me. I wondered
what Rafael wanted.
I tested the waters carefully. "Raf, do you want me to call
The boy shook his head vigorously. "No! I ain't never goin'
back there!" he said emphatically. "I hate it there".
"Where are you going to live then?" I asked.
The little boy shrugged. I nodded understandingly then quickly
the next question formed in my mind. I tried to hold it back but
it blurted out. "Would you like to stay with me? At least until
you're better. You can stay longer if you want of course. That's
up to you."
"Huh? The boy looked at me in surprise. "Why would you want
me to stay with you?"
I smiled gently. "You seem like a real nice kid whose in a
world of trouble. Maybe I can help, maybe I can't. You need a friend
right now and I want to be your friend. I guess I always wanted a
son, someone like you."
The boy smiled slowly and then he hugged me back. I felt
wonderful as his little brown arms clasped me and held me tightly.
Somehow I knew deep inside that we needed each other and that this
was meant to be. Rafael twisted slightly so that he could hug me
even stronger. He winced and grimaced as the pain shot through his
"You better take it easy." I said gently.
"Could I really live with you? I'd be good." The boy looked
up at me and I could see that there were tears forming in his big
I smiled and ruffled his long dark hair. "Are you house
trained?" I teased. The boy looked at me with confusion. I smiled
again. "I'd love to have you stay with me. You're welcome to stay
as long as you want. I have a spare bedroom that I can clean out
and make room for you." Rafael smiled happily. "And by the looks
of you I don't think you eat very much."
Lying there naked in the bed, his ribs were very visible. He
looked very thin and pale, though considering what he had been it
was surprising that he was still alive at all. Rafael settled back
in the bed and I lifted the glass to his lips again. He drank a
little more and then eased back. Even drinking seemed to exhaust
him. I continued to sit on the side of the bed next to him. I wanted
to touch his small body, to stroke the smooth skin of his shoulder.
I wanted to tell the little boy that everything would be 'okay'. I
wanted him not to be scared. I wanted him to know that no matter
what I would take care of him. I was very happy just knowing that
the boy depended on me as much as I was on him.
"How do you feel?" I asked after a while.
"It hurts real bad. I can't stop from.... thinking about it.
It's real bad isn't it? I heard what the doctor was saying to the
nurse. I probably won't grow up like other boys. Did you know that?
That's what he said. Because of what happened down there."
I nodded. "The doctor told me. He can't be certain Rafael.
When you're older, about four or five years from now,.... then they
can tell how bad it is." I said gently. "Don't worry about it now.
Right now all you've got to do is get better."
Lovingly I placed my hand on top of his. The boy's hand was
very small compared to mine. His little fingers were hot and moist
and he seemed to tremble as I squeezed his hand. A part of the boy
seemed to flow into me. He seemed so fragile lying there on the
white sheets. His body had been damaged, perhaps irreparably. He
had been terribly abused and while some of the damage that had
resulted would heal eventually some never would. I suspected that
the boy would be emotionally damaged. He needed my support and
friendship. He needed my affection and love.
I realized at that moment that not only was I prepared to give
Rafael my support and affection but I would do what ever it took
to love him. I was in love with a boy who was at the perfect age
to be my own son. The realization of it stunned me. I had never
thought of myself as gay but my interest in young males had always
been deeply repressed. I had been attracted to boys for as long as
I could remember. There was no denying that unpleasant fact, though
I had not done anything beyond simply look and admire. Here in the
bed was a beautiful young boy and it was all that I could do to
restrain myself from sweeping him up in my arms and carrying him
off into the sunset in my Porsche.
I smiled at the boy and resisted the demanding urge inside me
to kiss him. It was hard not to. I placated my rising desire with
a gentle though very loving brush of my fingers on his smooth
forehead as I pushed his silky dark locks back. The boy gave me a
smile that went straight to my heart. I looked into his dark eyes
and then remembered what the doctor had said about the boy being
repeatedly sodomized. I wondered whether the beautiful young boy
was a prostitute. I denied the possibility and decided that he had
been raped. There was another fear that was equally possible, that
he'd been infected with the Aids virus but I denied that as well.
He was far too beautiful to die a shocking death like that.
For a long while we just sat and stared at each other, looking
into each other's eyes as the bonds continued to be forged between
us. I was captivated by the boy's big dark eyes. There was a mystery
within him, a primal sensuous mystery as old as time itself.
"How old are you, Raf?" I asked at last.
"Ten. My birthday's on March 26," he volunteered.
I smiled as I memorized that wonderful day. "So you're ten
years and three months and,.. uh,...five days old,..." I said.
The boy giggled, "Yeah I guess. How did you figure that out
I grinned. "Raf, I've got to make a phone call. I'm supposed
to be in a meeting in about thirty minutes but I'm going to stay
here with you instead. I want to call them and cancel out, okay?"
I asked gently.
"Please don't leave me?" the boy pleaded, "Please?" Tears
formed in his eyes and he began to shiver uncontrollably.
"Raf, I promise I'll only be gone a few minutes. I'm going to
call from my car. Just five minutes, I promise."
The boy nodded uncertainly and half-closed his eyes in
resignation. I was sure that the boy thought that I was leaving for
good but there wasn't much I could do about it. The last thing I
wanted to do was to upset the boy. I brushed his forehead again and
let my fingers linger at the side as I gently stroked the soft dark
curls behind his little ears. "Trust me, Raf." I begged. I wanted
desperately to gain the boy's trust and I clumsily unfastened my
watch and gave it to him. "Here, Raf. You time me. If I'm more than
five minutes you can keep the watch." He looked at me uncertainly
and I smiled at the young boy. "It's just ten past now, okay?".
The boy nodded again, this time a little more confidently. I
stood up and backed towards the door. His dark eyes followed my
every move. I knew that tears were building up as he sniffed and
then wiped his small hand against his eyes. I sighed, sooner or
later he would have to learn to trust me. I turned and walked as
quickly as I could out through the reception area and over to my
car. It seemed to take forever to get a connection to Charleston.
I was probably on the limit as far as distance and the voice on the
other end was fuzzy. I managed to get the message across that I was
going to be delayed indefinitely and then I grabbed my briefcase
and headed back into the clinic.
Rafael had his face turned away and the nurse was trying to
comfort him. She smiled at me and moved away as soon as I came into
the room. I touched the boy's tear stained cheek gently as I
lovingly turned his head back to look at me. The boy was red-eyed
but he managed a small smile as soon as he saw me.
I grinned at him as I sat down on the bed again. "So how long
was I?" I asked. The boy shrugged and held out the watch
uncertainly. It was time to change phone companies. The time was
seventeen past three and my little game had just cost me well over
three hundred dollars. I began to laugh because I really didn't
care about the watch. All I wanted was Rafael. I wanted him to be
happy, healthy and mine.
The boy smiled shyly, his eyes blinking rapidly as his tears
stopped. "It's yours," I finally got in.
The boy shook his head resolutely as he looked at the gold
face of my chronometer. "It's beautiful,... but it's yours," he
said with embarrassment. "I should have known you weren't gonna
leave me. I was dumb to start crying wasn't I?"
I smiled. "It's never dumb to cry, Raf. If what you're crying
about is important to you. But you are right about one thing, I'm
never going to leave you."
The boy smiled and for the first time his pale lips parted.
His pure white teeth were perfectly shaped and spaced. I reached
forward and gently took his right wrist. I could feel the slight
pulse of his beating heart. His wrist was thin and very smooth. I
took the watch from the boy's hand and started to fasten it. "But
I don't want it, really I don't. It's yours and,... and,..." he
I grinned. "You better learn that when I make a deal I stand
by it," I said. "Besides you don't have a watch. You need one."
"But not this one. You owe me okay?" he grinned cheekily as
he took the watch back and refastened it around my wrist. "There.
That's better. Besides it's way too big for me."
I grinned back at the beautiful young boy and was rewarded by
a smile as he beamed at me. His dark eyes seemed to twinkle cheerily
despite the pain that he was in. "I owe you one," I promised. We
grinned at each other again like two starry-eyed lovers
To break what seemed like an endless silence I reached down
and opened my briefcase. It took a few seconds to find the book I
had brought with me to read. When I had left earlier that day it
had been in something of a rush. I had planned to stop by at one
of the discount malls on I-95 and pick up another book on my way
to Charleston. Fortunately I had thrown a 'Sherlock Holmes Omnibus'
of collected stories into my briefcase just in case the meeting
went longer than I expected and I decided to stay over in Charleston
for the night.
"What's that?" Rafael asked curiously.
"You know who Sherlock Holmes was?" I asked.
"Sure. The detective guy who hung out with Watson. Everyone
I grinned. "How about I read one of the stories to you?"
"Yeah! That would be cool. Would you? Please?" he implored.
I opened the book and scanned the contents. There was no place
like the beginning so I started with the 'Adventures of Sherlock
Holmes'. Rafael settled back into the pillows and listened
attentively. He giggled uncontrollably as I did my very poor
imitation of English 'English'. My accent was impossibly way off
the mark but it was still fun. I read to the boy for hours, until
the doctor came back and looked in on us. He nodded and smiled from
the doorway and then came over to look at the boy.
"How do you feel, young man?" he asked.
Rafael looked at me for reassurance and I smiled back at him.
It was heartening to see that in just a few short hours the boy had
started to depend on me. The boy looked back at the doctor, now
unwilling to discuss what had happened to him.I breathed out and
took over the role of protector. "He says that it hurts a lot more
than it did earlier. I've had the nurse bring in a few more cold-
packs while you were away but they don't hurt much."
The doctor nodded. "Probably not. I really don't want to give
him anything stronger than the sedative he's already on." He looked
at the boy and then asked, "Do you mind if I lift the sheet up for
Again Rafael looked at me for advice and protection. I smiled
and reached forward, lifting up the white sheet for the doctor. The
boy's groin seemed even darker in color that it had been earlier
though it looked as if the swelling in his scrotum had gone down
slightly. The doctor nodded and then turned to me. "Have you talked
to the boy about his injury?"
I shook my head. The doctor breathed out deeply. "I don't know
how much you heard when we were working on you earlier. I want you
to listen very carefully. What happened to you is very serious.
You're lucky to be alive. There has been some internal damage,
mostly to your bladder. It's quite likely that it could have killed
you if this man hadn't brought you here. There's also some bad
bruising on your stomach and thighs but it's largely superficial
and it should start to go away in a few days. The real damage had
been done to your testicles."
Rafael looked at me uncertainly. I leaned forward and
whispered, "That's the right name for what you probably call your
balls." The boy nodded slightly. He looked very uncomfortable and
I knew he was frightened much more than he was letting on. I wanted
to take all of his problems away forever but I knew that he had to
hear it sooner or later.
"It's very likely, almost certain I think, that you're going
to be sterile. That means you won't be able to father children."
The boy looked at me clearly afraid now. The doctor continued with
his prognosis. "Not only that, because your testicles were badly
crushed, it's also likely that you will not be able to mature
physically without drug therapy."
Again the boy looked at me for support. I placed my arms
protectively around his small shoulders and gave him a small hug.
"You'll be okay, Rafael. You'll see. Everything will work out all
right," I promised.
Rafael leaned closer and whispered quietly in my ear, "Can I
talk to you alone? I,... I don't want him to hear."
I nodded and looked back at Doctor Webster. "Rafael would like
to say something to me. Do you,... uh,... think,...?"
The doctor smiled and nodded. "I'll be right outside."
He stood up and walked to the door and closed it after him.
Rafael and I were alone. I could see that the boy was very nervous.
I wasn't at all sure of what he wanted to tell or ask me. He looked
down at his feet for a long, long time as he searched for the words.
"I,... I,... don't know,... how to say this," he finally stumbled
I smiled and placed my hand on his forearm. Unlike my arm, his
small arm was perfectly smooth. It was almost as if it had been
shaved because there wasn't a trace of hair, not even the peach-
fuzz that most children have. "Don't be frightened, Rafael. I think
you know by now that you can trust me. There's nothing that you can
say that can change the fact that I like you a great deal."
The boy nodded slowly. "Yeah, I guess I know that. It's just
that,... well when the doctor was fixing me up,... he kinda looked
all over me,... and well,..."
I wanted to kiss and hug the boy so much that I could barely
stand it. I knew now what he was struggling with. "Doctor Webster
told me about the damage to your bottom," I said gently. I breathed
out and added, "Is that what you want to tell me? I know you've had
sex and that you've done things that most boys your age generally
don't do." I paused searching for a way to tell Rafael that I
understood. "I don't know whether you were forced the last time,
when you were hurt, but the doctor thinks it's been going on for
some time. That's all in the past though, Raf."
Rafael looked up and I could see his reddened eyes blinking
and starting to water as he neared tears. "I'm sorry. I really am."
He swallowed and choked back a sob as it started to rise from deep
inside him. He wiped his hand over his eyes. "I wasn't forced to
do it. I've only done it with boys,... except for the last time.
Do you hate me?" he asked.
I smiled reassuringly and shook my head. "I could never hate
you, Rafael. You have to live your own life. Maybe you made a
mistake, that's all and I'm not even sure about that. It's really
none of my business."
"In Centerville,... it's kind of hard not to do that stuff.
All the boys do it. I s'pose because they're lonely. I was and I
couldn't help doing it. I think I'm gay, I really do. I'm sorry."
I stroked his small arm lovingly, letting my fingers travel
from his hand almost to his elbow. "There's nothing to be sorry
about. You're too young Rafael. Way too young to know if you're gay
or not. Just because you did those things it doesn't automatically
mean that you're gay."
The boy pulled his arm away guiltily and looked down at the
bump in the sheets that was caused by his feet. "But if I am then,
well,... you wouldn't want me to live with you would you? I know
I'm....gay. I think I've known it for a long while but I've always
been too scared to admit it."
I sighed. I wanted to tell the boy that I loved him. After
spending only a few short hours together I loved this beautiful
dark-haired ten-year-old boy. I loved him more than I ever imagined
was possible. "What if I was gay too?" I said slowly.
Seconds passed. It was as if the boy had not heard me. It was
the most frightening time of my entire life. I could not live if
he rejected me. His head lifted very slowly and he turned to look
at me. "Are you?" he whispered.
I breathed out in relief. "Do you want me to be gay?" I asked.
Rafael nodded. "It wouldn't bother you if I was?" I asked
uncertainly. He smiled and shook his head, almost eagerly as his
dark mane bounced over his forehead. I grinned back at the boy,
realizing that he had accepted me just as I had accepted him. We
needed each other.
"What the doctor said,... 'bout my balls? Do you think,...
well,... you know,... Can I still do that stuff?" he asked
"I don't know, but I'll ask him," I said.
Rafael started to giggle. "You can't do that. Don't be silly."
I laughed, "Just wait and see, Raf."
I got up from the bed and went over and opened the door. Doctor
Webster was talking to 'Slow Susie' but he broke off the
conversation and came over to me. I led the way back into the room
and stood next to Rafael's bed. "Doctor Webster I think Rafael
needs to know how the damage will affect him in other ways. I
suppose the question is will he still be sexually responsive?"
The doctor looked up at me quickly. I guessed that he was
surprised by my openness. "Yes, that's a very good question. I
don't have the answer. There is a chance I suppose that he'll be
impotent but I wouldn't expect the boy to suffer like that for very
long. His penis will recover fully in a few weeks. If there is a
problem, well, it'll be psychological. Only time will answer that
question, I'm afraid."
I nodded and translated. "It sounds to me like the less you
think about it the better. I'm sure everything will be fine and Raf
Junior will be up and about in no time at all."
Rafael blushed slightly and the doctor smiled warmly as he
looked down at the young boy. "Don't worry about until you need to,
okay? I'm sure everything is going to function normally. You do
need to take better care of the other part of your body though,"
he said more seriously and then added, "You and I are going to have
a long talk tomorrow morning."
Doctor Webster looked back at me thoughtfully. "You and I need
to decide about tonight. It's nearly six o'clock and my
receptionist wants to close up soon. We generally don't keep the
clinic open at night. Anyone who needs that kind of care we move
to hospitals either in Charleston or Savannah. I don't think we
need to move the boy at this stage but the problem is that there's
no motel around here. At least not one where you'd ever want to
stay. I'm prepared to let the boy stay here if you'll stay with
"Certainly. Of course I'll stay here with Rafael. That is if
you don't mind me sleeping in the other bed. I'm just about
exhausted," I said.
"No. Of course not. There's nowhere else except the couch in
the waiting room. Anyway I think it would be better if you stayed
in here with him. You can always give me a call if there's a problem
during the night. I think he'll be okay once I've given him
something for the pain. Well that's decided. Now about dinner. If
you'd like I'll have Susie pick up something downtown and bring it
back for you. I don't imagine,.. uh,.. Rafael is very hungry but
she'll get some soup for him."
"That sounds great," I said.
Shortly after that the doctor left for the evening and about
twenty minutes later 'Slow Susie' came in to see what I wanted for
dinner. What I really wanted for dinner was lying in the bed next
to me though I certainly wasn't about to say that. I told Susie
that I'd settle for anything even resembling food because I was
starving, even the standard junk-food fare of fried chicken or a
hamburger, fries, coleslaw, and coke. I reminded her to pick up
some soup, vegetable or chicken or something like that, for Rafael.
It didn't sound to me as though soup was going to do very much to
lift Rafael's spirits so I asked Susie whether she thought he could
have ice-cream. Susie said she didn't think it would hurt him so I
asked her to see if she could get a couple of icecreams or frozen
yogurts as well.
I gave her a ten and didn't expect to see much change. About
a half an hour later she came back and I was pleasantly surprised.
Not only had she brought back some of the best fried chicken I had
ever smelled but also the icecream. She left and I put my food on
the table while I helped Rafael eat his soup. The soup seemed to
perk the boy up a little bit. At first I had to hold the spoon to
his lips but by the time the styrene mug was about half gone he was
helping himself, albeit with some difficulty. His hand shook with
the effort of lifting the spoon and I began to understand something
about the traumatic stress that the boy had been through during the
last few days. Not only was he physically exhausted but he trembled
uncontrollably again and again. It made me feel both sad and angry
that he had been made to suffer like this. It was very hard to sit
on the bed next to Rafael and watch him struggle to eat, to see his
badly bruised face and know the damage that had been done to his
young body under the sheet, without thinking of murder.
The boy tried as hard as he could not to spill the soup but
every minute or two some would dribble off onto his beautiful brown
belly and I would wipe him clean with my handkerchief. Still I knew
better than to stop him from trying. The boy needed to rebuild his
self-confidence and self-esteem and having me feed him was not the
way to go about it. Anyway, it gave me a chance to eat as well and
I hadn't eaten since breakfast. My fried chicken not only smelled
good it also tasted good. I was hungry and I barely paused to breath
as I wolfed the three pieces while Rafael finished his soup.
As the boy's pain began to lessen as a result of the combined
effects of the Diazepam and the old standby of Tylenol, Rafael
began to get livelier. Finally I ended up feeding him french fries
by popping them one at a time into his mouth while he chewed
hungrily. I knew he was beginning to recover. I wasn't sure whether
Doctor Webster would agree with my diagnosis but it seemed that
what the boy needed was rest and plenty of food. I didn't think
that a few dozen french fries would do too much damage to a ten-
year-old boy. We polished off our icecreams and I went back to
reading the adventures of Sherlock Holmes after I had cleaned up
the mess on the bed.
The next few hours passed slowly and I read page after page
of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle as Rafael listened attentively. Just
before nine o'clock I realized I was reading to myself. The boy was
sound asleep. I stopped and spent a long, long time doing nothing
but sitting still and looking at Rafael. Finally, at a few minutes
before eleven o'clock I quietly got up from the bed and went over
to the other bed that was close to the window. I lay down and closed
my eyes. I could still remember every detail of our first few
minutes together and I replayed them and again as I drifted off to
I don't know what woke me up. It was in the early hours of the
morning, somewhere around two or three o'clock. I lay still,
listening to the sounds outside. There seemed to be a million
crickets right outside the window. In the dim light that filtered
into the room I could just make out the shape of the boy and his
dark body contrasted against the sheets. He seemed to be sound
asleep. The voices were barely more than a whisper. The sound
intruded into my consciousness in slow motion. For long valuable
seconds I could not believe the sound I was hearing. Then it sank
into my mind and I sat up quickly. Except for the crickets it seemed
quiet and deserted and I lay back down again. A few seconds later
I heard the whispers again. This time I was alert and I realized
that I hadn't been mistaken the first time. The voices seemed to
be right outside the window. I strained my ears to pick up the
words. "...course he's 'fuckin' here,... Luis will kill us...only
hospital in miles.....
Rafael had not been wrong. There were men trying to kill him.
He had witnessed something he was not supposed to see. The
whispering ceased and I slid off the bed and onto the floor
crouching still as my heart pounded a noisy rhythm in my ears.
Carefully I moved to one side of the window and then cautiously
came back to my feet as I looked outside and down the side of the
building. The moon was nearly full and I could make out the shapes
of two men as they moved towards the front of the building. They
were both armed with what looked a lot like sawed-off shotguns but
to my unpracticed eye I had no idea. All I knew was that Rafael and
I had better get out of the clinic, and fast. I went over to
Rafael's bed. Already my heart was racing and I was breathing
quickly as adrenaline rushed into me. I shook the boy awake. Rafael
looked up at me drowsily, still numbed from the effects of the drug
that he'd been on since early evening.
"There are two men outside with guns," I whispered as I began
to wrap the sheet around the small naked body.
Rafael shuddered with fear and I saw his face begin to crumble
as fear overpowered him. "They're gonna kill us," he whispered
"No they won't. I'm taking you out of here." I said quickly.
I pulled the end of the I-V from the bottle, leaving the plastic
tube taped to Rafael's arm and I slid my arms under his knees and
back and lifted up. The boy gasped from the sharp pain that wracked
his body. There was a terribly loud crash at the front door and I
realized that the front door had been disintegrated by the powerful
blast from a twelve-gauge shotgun. I heard more crashing sounds and
I stumbled out through the doorway and into the surgery as Rafael
choked back a scream of pain by biting onto his fist. Just through
the next doorway was the reception area. There was another door in
the wall directly opposite me and I carried Rafael through the
surgery and over to it. Luckily the door opened as I pushed against
it and I went through hoping that I could find my way to the rear
of the building. The crashing sounds seemed to be right behind me.
I came into an examination room and I pushed the door closed with
my foot. There was only one other door and I was certain that it
opened into the corridor that led down towards the doctor's office
and hopefully, to the rear entrance.
I was breathing hard and Rafael was making a whimpering sound.
He was still biting on his clenched fist and I knew that the boy
was both terribly afraid and in a great deal of pain. I knew that
I couldn't go into the corridor because it was clearly visible from
the reception area. I froze as I heard the men in the surgery, the
loud noises coming straight through the door that separated us.
There was a second or two of quiet and then the shotguns roared
again. It was only a matter of a few seconds before they searched
the room that we were in. I opened the door that led into the
corridor and rushed out, knocking Rafael's legs hard against the
door jamb as we went through. The corridor was clear but the fastest
way out of the building was right in front of me. I charged across
the reception area and through the splintered front door. Behind
me, the shotguns roared one more time. I leaped the three or four
stairs in one bound and nearly crashed to the ground with the extra
weight of the boy. I recovered and scrambled up and then ran as
hard as I could for my car. It was parked maybe forty or fifty feet
away under the trees and it seemed to take forever to cover the
distance. I didn't remember whether I had locked the doors but I
hoped not. The passenger door opened and I dropped Rafael down. He
screamed in agony. I slammed the door and ran to the other side. I
hadn't locked either door and I jumped in, searching for my key as
The car started on the first go and roared into life as I
flattened the accelerator, pulled it into first gear and dropped
the clutch. Three hundred and fifty German horses hit the ground
and the car leaped forward. I glimpsed the two men on the porch,
their guns already lifting up and taking aim. Pea-sized gravel flew
out as the car careened outward, going sideways as I fought to bring
it back under control. I was headed into the end of the parking lot
and I knew I had to turn around to get out. I spun the wheel keeping
the car going at maximum power and spinning the car around wildly.
The men were coming down the stairs with the shotguns aimed right
at the windscreen. I hit the headlights and the horn at the same
time. I've always appreciated German engineering. Halogen lights
and air horns burst into the night and the men leaped away as I
swerved towards them. In that instant I cut the lights and the car
rocketed down the driveway, its engine making a banshee wail as the
tachometer went into the red zone. I narrowly missed hitting a van
that was parked halfway across the road. I thought I could see
Florida plates but I couldn't be sure in the darkness as we flashed
by. I knew it belonged to the two men and I looked at it in the
mirror. It looked as though it was a dark red in color with one of
those elevated tops that some conversion vans have.
Seconds later I reached the road and I spun the wheel, changed
gears and accelerated, leaving black rubber streaks on the grey
road surface. I had valuable seconds before the two men got to their
own vehicle and I planned to make the most of it. Even though I
knew that there was little likelihood that they would be able to
catch me I was still frightened. The car hurtled down the country
road at over a hundred miles an hour without lights on. I realized
that I had turned the wrong way as soon as I gone about a mile and
realized that I had missed the turnoff. I was going away from the
freeway. There wasn't much I could do about it. I went for nearly
five miles with only the light of the moon to see by. Every few
seconds I glanced in the mirror to see if we were being followed.
I hoped that the men had thought that I would head towards the
freeway but I expected that the tire marks would give the game away.
All that time the boy was sobbing in waves as his pain returned
again and again.
I passed a few run-down farmhouses and considered stopping at
one to get help but it seemed pointless. In this part of the US I
was more likely to get shot by accident by doing that. Finally I
passed an old decrepid-looking barn and there seemed to be a lane
that ran off from the road. I braked hard and backed up as I
searched behind me for any sign of pursuit. I backed up into the
lane until I pulled up next to the barn. I turned the engine off,
opened the window and listened. Except for Rafael's gasping it
seemed still and quiet.
"You okay?" I asked gently as I felt my own pounding heart
begin to subside.
"Yeah,... Yeah I guess so," he whispered.
I leaned over to the boy and placed my arm around his shoulders
comfortingly. I could feel his little body trembling and I hugged
him gently. "We're okay now. That sure was close."
"Now do you believe me?" the boy demanded angrily.
"I believed you before. You don't look like a liar. Who were
they?" I asked.
"They was with Luis," Rafael replied.
"They were," I corrected. I started to laugh.
"What's so funny? They were gonna kill us you know?" Rafael
"But they didn't did they? I guess they are with Luis."
"Nothing, Raf. Just relax. They won't find us here," I said
"How do you know? They found me back there and you said they
I squeezed the boy's shoulder. "We're okay now. I'm going to
stay awake. I want you to get some sleep."
The boy shook his head and pressed his lips together angrily.
I continued to rub his shoulders gently. My fingers lightly
massaged his slender neck and caressed the silky dark hair. It
slowly relaxed the boy and his eyes closed. After about ten minutes
his head dropped down onto my shoulder. I held him to me tightly,
feeling his warmth through the thin cotton sheet. There seemed to
be a wonderful life in the small sleeping body that seeped into
mine and for the rest of the night I absorbed him. The hours passed
slowly. Time and time again looked at the car clock and saw that
only a few minutes had passed since I last looked. No cars came
past until just before sunrise and they were pick-ups that I felt
certain were owned by local farmers.
Rafael awoke just after eight o'clock. The sleep had been good
for him. He was stiff though not where he usually was the first
thing in the morning. He stretched like a lazy cat as he began to
struggle awake. It was fun watching the boy wake up. His eyes opened
slightly, saw the morning light and then closed again from lack of
interest. A few minutes later they tried again. This time he
stirred and sighed. He blinked several times and his eyes remained
opened as he yawned sleepily. He managed a weak smile at me.
"Hi Raf!" I said cheerily. "You sleep okay?"
"Huh? Oh yeah, I guess. Did they,...?" he murmurred.
I shook my head sleepily as I tried to clear the fuzz from my
brain. I would have given anything for a cup of strong coffee. "Not
a sign of them all night. How do you feel?" I asked.
"Okay, I guess. It still hurts down there a lot but not like
it did yesterday."
The boy paused and then he slowly started to giggle.
"It sure sounds like you are feeling a lot better. Okay so
what's up?" I asked.
"I don't have any clothes on do I?" Rafael giggled.
I grinned back at him. The sheet had fallen away during the
night so that it was only half over him and revealed a large part
of his beautiful brown body. "No, you don't do you? You have a
wonderful body so you've got nothing to be ashamed about. Besides
I've seen everything already."
Rafael grinned cheekily. "I'm starving. Are you?"
I nodded and started the engine. "I bet you are. First we
better go back to the clinic and find out what happened. We need
to get some clothes for you too."
The boy looked up at me uncertainly. I could see he was still
very frightened. "Do you think it's safe? They might be waiting."
"I don't know, they might. We'll be careful, okay?"
I eased the car back onto the road and drove slowly back
towards the clinic. I couldn't believe how far we had gone in the
middle of the night. It had taken only a few minutes to get to the
barn. Going back seemed to take forever as I looked constantly for
any sign of the red van. Finally I pulled into the driveway that
led to the clinic. I crept slowly up the narrow road in first gear,
ready to slam the car into reverse and 'get the hell' out of there
at the first sign of trouble. Two cars were parked in front of the
clinic and I parked under the trees where I had stopped the
"Stay here, Raf," I ordered. "I'm leaving the key in the
ignition. If you need me or see any sign of the men I want you to
hit the horn and then get down as low as you can."
The boy nodded and I opened the door and got out. Dr. Webster
came out onto the porch as I walked up to the clinic.
"Whew. I was beginning to think that you two hadn't made it,"
he said with obvious relief.
"Meaning we were dead?" I smiled.
"Something like that. How's the boy taking it?" the doctor
asked with concern.
I looked back at the car and waved to Rafael. I saw him smile
through the window. "He's feeling a bit better I think. It scared
both of us pretty bad. Must have been about two or so this morning
when it happened."
"What did happen?" the doctor asked.
"I woke up and heard two men moving around the building. They
were carrying guns. Looked like shotguns or something like that,
maybe about this big," I said, holding my hands about two and half
The doctor nodded. "That's what it looks like to me. They
blasted their way around in there."
I nodded. "I'm really sorry about that Doctor Webster. Rafael
had said something earlier about two men trying to kill him. I
believed him then but I really didn't think they would find us here.
I guess I was dumb. When you think about how badly the boy was
injured I should have expected that they would search here at some
The doctor looked away and sighed. "That might be it but I
think Susie had a role in it too. She was down at Jake's place last
night. That's a bar down the road about four miles. She blabbed
about an injured kid staying here so.... Anyway the main thing is
the two of you are safe. This place is insured. Maybe I'll be able
to get it repainted now."
I smiled. "Have you called the police yet?" I asked.
"Yes. They've already looked at the damage. They had to leave
because of a wreck out on '95. I guess they'll be back in an hour
or so." He paused. "What have you managed to find out about the
boy?" he asked.
"Not much really. I know he's a runaway, but then you already
suspected that. He's from an orphanage in Florida, near Miami. A
place called Centerville. He was very lonely there and I guess he
got involved with some of the other boys. I don't know how he got
here though. I think he wants to tell me what happened but he's
still too frightened."
The doctor looked at me curiously. There was a long silence.
"What's with you and the boy?" he finally asked.
"Huh?" I looked at him with surprise.
The man smiled. "I'm not blind or stupid you know. What's with
the two of you?" he asked again.
"I,... uh,... I'm not exactly sure what you mean Doctor
Webster," I replied.
The doctor smiled. "Let me be honest with you." He breathed
out and then took a deep breath. "I came down here from 'DC a few
years ago. My friend,... had just died from a complication caused
by Aids. There wasn't a thing I could do to save him. I was a damned
good doctor and I couldn't help him. I came down here to escape and
try to pick up the pieces." The doctor looked away and sighed
deeply. "I loved him. He was just nineteen when he died. I had known
him since he was sixteen. You understand what I'm saying?"
I nodded, "You're gay? You're not the only one, Doctor
The doctor smiled. "For God's sake call me Colin. What's your
"John," I replied cautiously.
"Well John, I'd have to be blind not to see that you and the
boy are,... uh,... what we might call attracted,... to each other.
You are aren't you?" I nodded very slowly and looked at the doctor
quizzically. The man looked over to the car, to Rafael. "If he's
been living in a home I guess he's had a miserable life up till
now. You could change that."
I nodded slowly. "I guess,... What are you driving at?" The
doctor shrugged and started to turn away. "Colin?" I said loudly.
He turned around and looked at me. "Yes I could change his life. I
fully intend to. I want Rafael to live with me."
He smiled. "I was hoping you'd say that. He needs someone like
you desperately. Peter, my friend, was a lot like Rafael. A real
nice kid whose life was shit. He was working the streets. Boy
hustlers have a hard life in 'DC. He came into the hospital with
Hepatitis. I sort of adopted him. Peter lived with me right up to
the time he died."
"I'm sorry," I said simply.
"Take the boy away with you and give him a good life. He
deserves something in this life. It'll be the best thing that could
happen to him. Probably the best thing for you too, going by how
you were looking at him yesterday."
I smiled. "I'm that obvious huh?"
"No. I guess I just knew what to look for. That boy needs you
every bit as much as you need him. What the two of you decide to
do together after he's better is nobody's business but yours. Peter
and I had a good life for three years. He'd been infected before I
met him and he tested positive at the hospital so I knew that we
only had a few years together. They were good years. I only wish I
had met him earlier or he'd lived longer. Three years weren't
enough. It happened very quickly at the end. I wasn't ready to let
I looked at Rafael and waved again. This time the boy waved
back. "Do you think Rafael's got it?" I asked. The fear rose up
inside me and I waited for the answer.
"Aids? I doubt it, but he might. He needs another test. It
usually takes about six weeks for the body to react to infection.
Any number of health clinics can do it, or if you'd rather you can
bring him back here."
"What about the police?" I asked
"As far as I know you disappeared sometime last night." The
doctor passed me a business card. "I don't want to know who you are
or where you live but I would like you to give me a call or write
and let me know how things turn out for the two of you." He stepped
back through the doorway. The shattered front door lay on the floor
at a crazy angle. Its painted surface was splintered and
pockmarked. I followed the doctor back into the surgery and through
into the room where I had stayed the previous afternoon and evening
with Rafael. The surgery had been systematically destroyed but
nothing prepared me for the destruction in the next room. The bed
where Rafael had slept was blackened from powder burns and there
were huge gaping holes into the mattress where several shotgun
blasts had been fired. Only a few seconds longer and Rafael would
have been lying there in a pool of bright red blood. I turned away.
The window had been smashed and sheets and pillows had been
scattered over the floor as the men had vented their anger. My
briefcase had been torn open and papers had been strewn across the
"What a mess, Colin. I'm truly sorry. If I can help in any
way,...?" I said.
"No. Like I said I'm insured. The best thing you can do to
help is take the boy away from here and give him the best life you
can. Let me get a few things for you. He's going to need more
Diazepam, at least for the next few days until the pain goes away.
I want to keep him on the cortisone too."
I bent down and picked up my investment reports and papers,
stuffing them back inside the briefcase with the book I had been
reading to Rafael. By the time I finished the doctor came back into
the room. He handed me two small bottles and the boy's clothes. The
shorts and tee-shirt had been washed and looked clean and fresh.
"I wrote some instructions down. Basically one of each at breakfast
and dinner for the next few days." I nodded. The doctor passed me
a tube of ointment. "This is Zinc Oxide. You need to put a good
coating on his anus until the fissures heal. It should take only
take a few days too."
"Thanks a lot Colin. I appreciate everything. How can I pay
for what you've done so far?" I asked and then smiled as I added,
"I don't think Rafael's got a health plan to bill this to."
Colin grinned. "It's free. It's the least I could do. I'm just
very glad that everything will turn out okay for him."
"You better get the I-V out though," I grinned.
"I think he's still got that catheter in too," Colin said.
"It's not all that hard to pull it out but I guess I had better do
He walked with me to the front porch and I waved to Rafael
again. He waved back again. The doctor and I went over to the car
and I opened Rafael's door and leaned over the boy to unfasten his
seat-belt. I helped him straighten up and I unfolded the sheet so
that he sat naked on the seat. I moved out of the way and the doctor
squatted down next to Rafael.
"How do you feel?" he asked gently.
Rafael looked up at me and I smiled reassuringly. "Okay. It
still hurts a lot but not as much as yesterday," he said nervously.
Colin nodded. "The swelling has gone down a lot. Before you
know it you'll be back up and keeping John real busy."
Rafael blushed and looked up at me. I nodded. "He knows you're
going to live with me," I said.
"Oh," Rafael said. "Ouch! Man that hurts!" He yelped as the
doctor gently pulled the thin orange catheter out from the tiny
puckered end of his penis. A little bit of dark red fluid dribbled
from the end of the boy's penis and out of the catheter, making a
reddish brown stain on the white sheet. Carefully the doctor
unfastened the plastic bottle that was secured to the inside of
Rafael's right thigh.
"That's better. Does it still hurt?" he asked. Rafael shook
his head. The doctor turned and looked up at me. "There'll probably
be some drainage during the next day or so and then his urine should
be normal again. If it's not or if it hurts when he goes I want you
to call me right away." He eased the tape back and carefully pulled
the I-V needle out from Rafael's forearm. He rubbed the soft
underside of the boy's arm and replaced the tape. "Not quite as
good as new but he'll do," he teased as he stood up. "Give him a
week or two and the bruising will disappear."
I nodded and squatted down. Rafael lifted his legs up as I
slipped his shorts on. He managed to lift his buttocks up without
too much difficulty and I pulled the shorts up very carefully to
cover him. I placed my handkerchief under the boy's shorts so that
it formed a soft clean pad over his injured genitals. I smiled as
I unfolded the little tee-shirt. "Cute mouse," I said. "He looks a
bit like you."
"My best friend gave me that. I really liked him a lot," Rafael
murmured. "Before he left Centerville...." His voice trailed off
and I knew that his memories were unhappy ones.
"Well," I said, "You're not going back there again. Unless you
want to, of course."
I pulled the tee-shirt over his head and guided his hands
through the sleeves. I could have looked at him naked all day but
it was also nice to see him dressed and the damage to his body
covered up. I straightened up and turned to the doctor. We shook
hands and I thanked him again before the doctor squatted down
"I guess this is good-bye, Rafael. You take care of John,
hear. He has my phone number and I want you to make sure that he
calls me and tells me all the news about the two of you. Promise?"
Rafael grinned and looked at me with a happy smile as I got
into the seat next to his. "Sure thing. Bye Doc'. And thanks for
taking care of me," he said.
I started the engine and the doctor closed the door. "You guys
be good to each other," he called out as I pulled the car around
and headed down the drive to start my new life with Rafael.
End Chapter 5 (stay tuned for the continuing adventures)