Warning: this story contains some strong language and depicts suicidal ideations. If these trigger you, please read no further. But don’t worry, no characters were killed in the making of this story, so please enjoy. Author’s Note: I’m hoping that in writing this, I can help myself through a deeply depressing time in my life.
Home for the Holidays – By James Lancy
Breaking up over the holidays wasn’t the best reason to drink, but for Devon, it was the only reason. He didn’t want to go to any gay bars or his favorite bowling alley with any of his friends. Instead, he kept himself inside curled up in his college throw blanket and a bottle of Merlot.
‘I’m attractive, right?’ he’d think to himself as he took another sip from his glass. It was time to refill and did so almost instantaneously. All of the thoughts about failure and regret seeped to the forefront of his mind. Between his onyx locks was a tumultuous storm and all he had to navigate was the blacked out stars and a slow leaking frigate.
He was indeed attractive. Devon was irresistible to both sexes; which made his Bisexuality a mixed blessing. He never discriminated when it came to lovers. Perhaps such a mode of thought became his undoing.
“Jeez, are you going to sit here all night?” Cody asked Devon as he was just about to put on the winter coat he procured from the closet. Cody was Devon’s roommate and was heading out to meet with a very attractive younger woman, then take her to have dinner with his family.
“I have nowhere to go,” Devon groaned out just before taking another sip of Merlot. “Jared broke up with me and you know how things are with my parents.” Then he felt like joking. “Feel like taking home a stray?”
“And embarrass myself in front of my parents?” Cody asked incredulously. “I think I’ll pass.”
“Why?” Devon asked, his tone growing sour and even more slurred with the more he drank. “Because I like men? You’re embarrassed that they’d figure out I’m half gay?”
“Dude, get a life,” Cody said with an equally sour tone. “Get out of the apartment and find some guy or girl to sleep with. Maybe then you’ll feel a little better about yourself.”
“I had a life,” Devon persisted and turned himself over on the couch he was sitting on. Then he knelt towards the back of the couch and hung his wine glass over the edge. “I had a pretty fucking good one too. But somehow…” He waved his glass around in a circle while he thought of the next words to say. “Jared got bored of me. I want to know what the fuck I did wrong.”
“Then ask him,” Cody replied to Devon’s brooding. “Don’t ask me. I’m not Jared. I gotta go.”
“Wait…” Devon said urgently. He put down his drink on the coffee table and got up to meet his roommate. “Can’t you just stay for a little while longer?”
“Oh no, I see that look on your face,” Cody said, objecting to whatever he was going to ask. Devon certainly looked like he wanted something. “I am perfectly straight, thank you very much.”
“Yeah, you’re right,” Devon said, defeated and looking at the carpet on the floor. “Have a good time, then.” He tried to look up and smile, but it looked entirely too forced, Cody didn’t believe it for a second.
Cody walked right out of the door and left Devon alone in the living room of the apartment, left to his thoughts which grew darker as the minutes and seconds ticked by. For five minutes after Cody left, he sat on the couch in silence, then laid down sprawled across the cushions.
It was after Cody left that Devon was then switched into autopilot, he was hit so hard by the breakup and the degradation of his life thereafter. On his way home from his last date with Jared, he stocked up on his favorite fermented liquid and told the clerk he was planning a big holiday party with a rehearsed smirk. It was hard to believe he could act in such a manner after an event that shattered his balance into a million pieces.
So he went back and forth between the couch and the kitchen for more alcohol. Once for a new glass because the one he had accidentally fell off of the coffee table. Then another trip to the bathroom for tweezers and an adhesive bandage because he cut the bottom of his foot on the broken glass.
Cody had a pretty nice night. He picked up the stunning blond he had chatted up on Tinder and on the ride to where his parents loved to dine during the holidays, the two of them came up with something to tell his parents when they got there.
“So we met at my frat house…” Cody started to say but then thought better of it. “Wait, that sounds too ridiculous. Where could we meet that doesn’t have my mom freaking?” He thought long and hard about it. He went over a few options in his head then settled on the best thing he could think of. “Let’s just stick with Tinder. It wouldn’t be a total lie.”
“Sure, why not?” Katy said with a smile, a chuckle, and a shrug of her shoulders. “What’s next?”
“Well, we’ve dated for a few weeks,” Cody went on as he stopped, looked both ways, and turned a corner. “You’ve even come out to meet me at work, I work at Simpson and Simpson Law Firm. I’m a paralegal working on my law degree. And you’d bring me lunch to be cute.”
“I suppose that would sound like me,” Katy said sarcastically. “Bringing lunch to be cute.” She was one of those more down to earth girls despite being a total bombshell blonde.
Cody was blonde as well, but his looks were really the only good things going for him. His attitude would be described as tolerable at best and at worst, a number of his friends would have to call him out for being a total ass.
A few more turns and they made it to the local wine and dine Italian restaurant where his family liked to meet on Christmas every year much to the chagrin of the wait and cook staff. They understood that people didn’t like to cook, but that didn’t mean it would be up to the people who did it for a living.
About that time of the evening, Devon resorted to texting Cody about his distressing state of mind. And as he was waiting for the waiter to take his order, he felt his cell phone go off in his pocket.
When he took out his phone, Cody instantly saw who was texting and proceeded to put the device back in its place. He rolled his eyes and quickly regained his composure to get back to dinner. Devon saw that his message went unanswered, thinking his roommate might be busy and tried someone else. Jared would never listen in his mind, he probably moved on at point anyway. Every other contact in his phone probably wouldn’t listen either.
Devon’s eyes started to roll to the back of his head, images of Jared plagued his senses surrounded by a vivid haze. The curly blonde was surrounded by a blackness, lit by a single spotlight. His full lips opened just slightly and his hands groped every curve of his own body. Not a strip of fabric in sight, nothing but a majestic rawness shaded in a light pink hue. He wanted friction and heat, he wanted to pour out his desires of the flesh. But this was merely a tease followed by a roar of laughter. “I would never do it with you,” Jared’s sweet and sultry voice said, dripping with poison.
Devon’s instinctual reaction to being denied what he longed for was to scream at the top of his lungs. Unfortunately for him, he was also drunk as hell, and the pressure he placed on his stomach was enough to make him sick. For whatever reason, his hazed mind made the sound decision to be sick in the one place nearby that could make it easy to clean; the kitchen. Probably the worst idea he could come up with to date.
The next few hours were filled with an existential back and forth between himself and his demons. The demons had the upper hand because they knew of deep-seated pain points that even he wasn’t aware. He found himself sitting on the lazy boy that Cody liked so much, the stench of sick still in the air. Thankfully, he didn’t get anything on his clothes.
Devon had to try one last ditch effort to save himself. Maybe Cody will answer him if he sent a desperate enough or a sad enough text. It was doubtful, but he couldn’t let his demons win so easily. But at the rate they were going, they had the upper hand. With every drink he ingested, they became more persuasive.
I want to die
That was his only text to Cody, the only one he wanted to send. Devon left out the punctuation because of the generation’s new fangled texting etiquette. He hit the send button and expected no replies, expected his words to shoot up into the air and come back down to him. The read notification reached Devon’s phone and the next half hour was spent with his phone buzzing so much that it would have fallen on the floor if it hadn’t been wedged between a cushion and an arm rest.
Cody: Your serious?
Missed Call from Cody.
Dude pick up your phone
Missed Call from Cody.
I need to talk to you
Missed Call from Cody.
Pick up your fucking phone!!!!!!
5 Missed Calls from Cody.
Damnit I’m coming over
7 Missed Calls from Cody.
Devon you better not be faking
During the time that Devon ignored his phone, he looked for some sort of implement with which he could take his life. His first instinct was to go for a knife, maybe he could slit his wrists or his neck. Slitting the wrists would take too long. He tried as hard as he could to think of all the ways he heard of to commit suicide, but it came back down to the knife.
While Cody was on his way back to the apartment, Devon worked up the courage to do it. He wanted it more than anything because he was so thoroughly convinced that his life was going to hell. The end was inevitable, he just needed a reason to bring the hammer down, and this was it.
He might have waited for a little too long, because just before he could do it, Cody burst through the door.
“Stop!” Cody shouted, so very alarmed that the deed might have already been done. He rushed over and ripped the knife from Devon’s hand and threw it down beside him. “The hell are you doing?”
“Cody, what are you doing?” Devon asked, his temper flaring. “I had it! I was just about to do it.” A few tears started to drip down his cheeks, a mixture of fury and hopelessness.
“Come on, man,” Cody tried to talk Devon down. “Look at you, you have something else, I dunno. I had a date with a hot girl and I gave that up just to make sure you’re okay.”
“Then go back to her!” Devon nearly roared. “If that’s all you care about, then go! I’m sure you’ll have a much better time than my pathetic ass! Because you have something to live for, I don’t.”
“Devon, I get it,” Cody said in return. “You’re depressed and stressed because you feel alone. If you want me to, I’ll stay here with you. I’ll clear my schedule, tell everyone that I can’t spend Christmas with them, they don’t need to know why.”
“Now you’re pitying me,” Devon fumed with balled fists at his sides. “You feel sorry for me because I lost a good thing. Just stop, your good deed is done. Go back to your parties and have your fun. Let me rot in peace.”
“Shit man…” Cody uttered taking in a deep breath and turning away before turning back to take Devon’s cheeks in his hands and bringing the other male close. He had to do something so unexpected as to give Devon a kiss to try and pull the brunette out of the water he was drowning in. Then Cody furiously tore himself away. “I’m willing to take one for the team so you can feel better. What does that say to you?”
“Uh…” Devon muttered for a moment, it took him a moment to process what just happened. He had to sit down. “You just kissed me.”
Cody nodded his head, in utter disbelief over what he just did himself.
“Yeah, I did,” Cody finally answered. “And you know what, it felt kinda good. Just like kissing a…never mind.” He rested his hands on his hips and continued his thought. “So, what will it take to make you feel better? I’m willing to sharp breath do anything.”
“Bullshit,” Devon replied sourly. “You told me before you left that you would never sleep with me because you’re straight.”
“I didn’t say I would never sleep with you,” Cody retorted with a raised index finger. “I just reminded you I’m straight. That doesn’t mean I’m not…willing to experiment.”
“Can I just call bullshit twice?” Devon shot back. “Because it’s very clear that you’re lying through your teeth. You don’t want to sleep with me because I’m a dude and this would complicate our friendship. You’re not even being serious about this, you’re hesitating!”
“Because a few hours ago, the thought of doing it with you sickened me,” Cody said trying to defend himself, and sounding oddly smart while doing so. “Then Katy showed me some pictures of her gay friend and his boyfriend. They looked so into each other. It made me realize that something like this is okay.”
“And seeing me and Jared together didn’t?!” Devon asked desperately. He was clearly trying to put two and two together. “You can let a strange girl show you the light but I can’t?”
“Look, do you want me to do things with you or not?” Cody asked frustratedly. “Because if you don’t, I can go back to my date and we can forget this happened.” He also turned to leave to make a point.
“Wait, I’m sorry,” Devon apologized with a solemn tone. “Please don’t go. If you want to stay and keep me company, I’m not going to argue.”
“Good,” Cody said in return, and he approached Devon still somewhat hesitantly. He tried to work out in his mind how he was going to go about something like this since the thought had previously never been conceivable to him. Cody was always firm and absolute in his sexuality and never thought he’d be capable of reasoning any differently. “Don’t make any sudden moves, okay?”
“Got it,” Devon said softly and opened his arms to receive Cody’s affection. Cody approached Devon and knelt down to straddle the other male and went in slowly for a kiss.
One thing led to another and Cody ended up having the best sex of his life, even if he did bottom. The two of them laid in Devon’s bed, still panting fifteen minutes after finishing.
“You know, I never thought that would feel as good as it did,” Cody admitted, the covers reached to his waist and not an inch more while he laid on his stomach.
“You’d be surprised, when I was with Jared, I was the bottom,” Devon commented, but he was quickly shut up by Cody’s sudden frustration.
“Let’s not talk about that asshole, okay?” Cody said, annoyed. “He left you in a mess that I had to clean up. So if I hear his name one more time, I’m moving out.”
“Okay, okay,” Devon said quickly, lifting up a hand in surrender. “No more talking about him.”
“Good,” Cody said, feeling proud of himself for some reason. “I’ll hold you to that.”
Somewhere on Mt. Olympus, the Greek Gods looked down upon those two mortals and simultaneously shook their heads in disapproval. The collected thought was, ‘Humans can be such irrational beings.”
(Story was edited for inconsistencies.)
Suicide is an unfortunate part of the holidays, and it can occur for a number of reasons. Lost loved ones, disownment from one’s family, and the inability to make meaningful friends can send a normally happy person to a dark place. So when going about your days until next Christmas, please keep in mind that not everyone has a place to be or loved ones to visit during the holidays. So take in a stray, I’m sure you’ll make their day all the better for it.