It was two weeks ago when David found out his girlfriend was born a boy, and he doubted it was news he'd ever fully get used to. If anything, he was more embarrassed than heartbroken at the moment. Not as if other people in his school knew, no one apart from David did. And he was struggling in his decision to make it public or keep it a secret.
There were two possible scenarios. One, he tells everyone he knows in the hope that they believe he was unknowing and completely disgusted by the idea of kissing a boy turned girl. Two, he doesn't tell a single other soul, ensuring his own safety and eradicating any risk of being branded as gay, and he would never ever talk to her/him again! (It was hard deciding on which pronoun to use. He or She?)
At this time neither scenario appealed to him. The first was cruel, very cruel, too cruel for him to even consider. And it was a lie. Well, not a complete lie, he hadn't felt as disgusted about it as he initially thought, but a lie all the same. And the second was good in that no one thought him gay, not that gay was a bad thing, but it was hard to be accepted in the place where he grew up. Most families were of a strict religion, and coming out was utterly shamed upon, possibly even life-threatening. And if David was perfectly honest, he wasn't sure if he never wanted to speak to her again, even if as just friends. Because that's the trouble, he didn't only like her sexually, but they had become genuinely close.
His decision was still yet to be made as he headed up the path leading to the school's entrance. David saw a group of his friends standing beside the yard's apple tree, and swerved hastily away in order to avoid them. Conversation meant questions, and questions would lead to horrible answers. People had already began to notice the distance between David and his girlfriend. Actually, they weren't even 'officially' together. They were close, yes, and they would go out together on what could be considered as a 'date'. And okay, they had kissed a few times, something David hated thinking about. But the term had never been said allowed or had been discussed by either of them, meaning she wasn't really his girlfriend! Now all he had to do was convince others of this fact.
As if planned, David bumped into a fairly tall, but slim built girl, literally bumped into her as he turned the corner fast, knocking the books from her grasp. He reached for her arm in order to steady her before she too went toppling over. David let go of her the moment he remembered his life ruining predicament, sighing with annoyance at having to greet the girl he wanted so desperately to avoid.
Her hair was unnaturally dark, bottle dyed black, and her eyes were equally dismal. But her skin, soft and pink, brightened her appearance, and her brilliantly rosy cheeks made him want to smile. And then he remembered that he couldn't, he shouldn't. She seemed to react in the same way as he did, her instinctive smile shied into a questioning glare.
Her previously beautiful feminine name seemed now contaminated. He didn't like using it. David contemplated on whether to bend and help her pick up her books, but ultimately decided to leave her to it.
"We can't even say hello to each other anymore?" She asked, flicking her hair as she rose. It was only now that he knew the truth that David noticed the slight husk in her seemingly girly voice. He was starting to notice a lot of things, or maybe he was just imagining some of them - trying to make this easier on himself. A group of girls went quiet as they passed, desperate to overhear the reason behind the 'golden couple's' sudden breakdown. David gave them a long stern look until they got the message and left them alone.
"Hi," He greeted Clary flatly, hating himself for being so horrible but knowing it was necessary.
"You hate me, don't you?" She asked, the sadness evident in her tone.
"I don't hate you." He wasn't sure if his answer was honest or not. David didn't know how he felt. He was still confused. He pushed away memories of the two of them, of kisses, of hugs, of his embarrassing confession about his feelings for her. And he hated that it made him feel sick. And sad. It didn't make sense! He couldn't see how this odd but strikingly beautiful girl was really a boy. Well, technically, she wasn't a boy anymore. But she had been. Once. And the thought was terrifying. "I just don't know what I'm supposed to do now," David admitted. "It's weird."
"I could talk to you about it," Clary suggested. She sounded sympathetic."I would like to make you understand."
She reached out her arm in a comforting gesture. David filched away, afraid of the touch, afraid of the surrounding eyes he felt were all glued to him, waiting for his reaction, all knowing the truth. But he wasn't gay. He wouldn't have gone for her if he had known.
People could not judge him for this, it would be completely unfair.
A pang of hurt hit her features, watering her eyes. But she still wasn't angry. Clary remained the calm and sweet girl she had always been. Dressed in a floral pink shirt and a flowing summer skirt, she was more girly-looking than most girls here were. Seventeen years of age, and completely beautiful. His eyes fell to her chest for a fleeting moment, he hoped Clary hadn't noticed. Were those real? Those lumps? He knew people like her could take stuff, hormones, but he didn't understand enough about it to know what was real and what wasn't. He should have googled it when he found out.
"Sorry," Clary mumbled. "I know not to touch you." Why wasn't she getting mad? David had been angry - for almost a whole week he had been fuming. I was born a boy. The moment he heard those words the anger had become so impossibly hard to control. He had almost hit her, punched her in the face, kicked her in the gut, over and over and over until she wasn't what she was anymore, until she wasn't anyone, until she was dead, and then David wouldn't have had to be humiliated. Well, not exactly the moment he heard. At first he laughed, convinced it was nothing but a sour joke.
But seeing her now, so fragile looking, he was glad he hadn't lost his temper. He would have regretted it for the rest of his life.
"You don't think we can be friends?" Clary asked when David said nothing. The bell rang for lessons, but neither moved, waiting for his response. It was a difficult question to answer. They couldn't be together romantically because who and what she was made David feel too uncomfortable. And they couldn't be just friends because what he wanted was still more than that. It was a no win situation.
"I'm not sure what I think," David confessed. His tone was softer, he felt more relaxed now everyone was heading inside and no one was looking their way. "I'm confused." And he was, even more so than a boy his age should be. It was unfair. In a way he blamed Clary for all of this, for not telling him sooner. She made him befriend her, like her, fall for her, and then told him what he never thought he would hear. But at the same time, he understood that she had to keep it a secret, at least until she knew him well enough to confide in him. David hadn't taken it well, and he still wasn't. He was being ignorantly harsh. Yet, he could not be blamed for the tension either. Clary had made him feel in ways for her he had never felt for any girl before, and without considering his feelings. And now here she was, stood in front of him, sad and wide-eyed, asking for his forgiveness.
He knew in actual fact there was nothing he needed to forgive her for. But he wasn't allowed to. David had to stay away, it was for his own good...