The daily serial fictional based on Chicago's Boystown neighborhood: Boystown series by Danny Bernardo

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11-15 Recap (Volume 6)

Charlie reaches his breaking point and Robbie finds a way out in week 3 of BOYSTOWN Volume 6. Volume 7 launches 3/25!

11-15 Recap (Volume 6)
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Charlie reaches his breaking point and Robbie finds a way out in week 3 of BOYSTOWN Volume 6. Volume 7 launches 3/25!

The last time Alex went up these stairs, he'd been hopeful that he and Tyler would become boyfriends. Now, months later, he climbed up for less selfish reasons. The door opened and on the other side was a disheveled, unshaven imposter of his former English teacher.

"Come in," he said, quickly closing his robe to conceal his boxer shorts. The hunky jock guy drawing on the couch took off his headphones and stood up.

"Whoa, Charlie, you sure it's such a great idea to have this kid here?" he asked.

"Hunter, will you give us a minute?"

Alex maintained his decorum and tried to remain civil (despite being called a kid) as the A&F wannabe sauntered off to his room. Mr. Parker slurped his glass of white wine. "Can I offer you a glass?" he asked snidely.

"Do you have any red?"

"I was joking Alex. So what's this about Robbie's dad beating him?"

"It's just awful, Mr. Parker. Robbie looks like a punching bag. You've got to do something."

"There's nothing I can do, Alex. I met with my union delegate yesterday and I'm suspended until my disciplinary hearing with the principal. If I try to interfere, it might complicate matters."

"But what about poor Robbie?"

"Nothing I say will help him, they'll think I'm making it up to save my own ass. Especially since he reported that I initiated the kiss. So unless he retracts that statement... "

"But he can't! His father will beat him more!"

Charlie sighed. "If you want to help him, Alex, maybe you should call Child Protective Services or... "

"But then he'll be lost in the system. And who knows long that will... "

"Well what the FUCK do you want me to do?!" Charlie spat out, throwing his arms up in frustration and spilling his wine in the process. "Wave my fucking magic wand and make it all go away? But I can't, can I, because SOMEBODY took a fucking picture and spread it around the fucking school."

"Mr. Parker, I don't know what you're implying, but... "

"Oh, I'm not implying anything, you little shit. I'm saying it out right. Fuck you. Fuck you for taking that picture. Fuck you for ruining my life. You try to get back at me for whatever reason and now congratulations. Both Robbie and I are fucked."

"This has nothing to do with... "

"You know, I may fuck up my life quite a lot, but at school, I used to like to think I was doing something right. I tried to do the right thing for my friend and you take your revenge. I took over as faculty advisor for the GSA and somehow become the queer teacher who molests his kids. Every time I try to do the right thing, somehow it comes back to bite me in the ass. Well, I'm done."

Alex stood there in shock, fighting back tears of frustration. "Mr. Parker, I know we haven't always seen eye to eye, but I wouldn't never do anything so heinous, so malicious, to you or Robbie. It's true, I saw it, and it's true maybe I was going to use that information to prod at you. But I would never, ever have... "

"Save the speeches, Alex. It's done. My career's ruined, my life is ruined, and I am fucking done."

Tyler opened the front door and stopped at the sight of Alex.

"Tyler," Alex said, nobly acknowledging his presence.

"Zan," Tyler said, staring at Charlie in disbelief. Charlie poured himself another glass of wine as Tyler scurried off to his room.

"I'm trying to do the right thing too," Alex said after a moment. "I'm trying to help. Believe what you want about me, but Robbie is suffering at the hands of his father for something that he can't help. And it's only going to get worse before it gets better. I'm afraid that if his father doesn't stop hurting him, Robbie will do something... drastic."

Charlie chugged his wine, bitterly. "Anything I could've done for Robbie... I'm powerless now. I've been robbed of the opportunity to help. And it makes me sadder than you'll ever know. " Charlie poured himself another glass and walked to his room. "Lock the door on your way out."



The Bitches gathered around the bar, enthralled by Efrain's pixelated face staring back at them.

"How did this creep even get your picture?" Braden asked.

"Who knows," Efrain said, disturbed that someone was passing themself off as him.

"Could've been any number way of ways," Tristan said, topping everyone's vodka cranberries.

"," said Jaison.

"Manhunt," said Braden.

"Adam4Adam," said Tristan.

"Scruff," said Braden.

"Ay! Enough!" Efrain protested. "I'm not that much of a cyber slut."

"Has he responded at all?" asked Braden.

"He asked if I liked the pic," said Tristan. "I said he was just ok."

"Just ok?!" Efrain pouted, slapping Tristan. "Mira, that's my face. Just ok?!"

"Well, it's not like he's going to meet him," Jaison laughed. The Bitches kept staring at Tristan's phone. "Right?"

"What if we did, though?" Braden schemed. "What if... we make this guy think Tristan's interested... have him meet up... and confront him, with Efrain in tow?"

"Ooh drama!" Jaison squealed.

"I dunno, girl," Tristan said. "That shit could get tricky."

"Oh you mean like that guido Jersey Shore lookin motherfucker that fucked you and robbed you?" Jaison asked. "Cuz that trick was the trickiest."

"I don't like this piece of shit going around, telling everyone he's me," Efrain said. "Who knows what people be thinking of me now."

"This is just simply too juicy to let go of," Braden said, shifting a challenging sideways glance at Tristan. "What do you say, Veronica Mars? You up for the challenge?"

Tristan looked at his Bitches, sighed, and picked up his phone. "Hey," he messaged JacksonMaxium AKA guy using Efrain's picture.

After a moment, came the reply:




"So what does it mean?" Edward asked, turning away from the livestream of the Illinois House Committee Debate.

"It means the bill passed and it's up for a vote in the House of Representatives now," Steve said, snuggling with Edward in bed

"One step closer," Edward said, taking Steven's hand in his, admiring the engagement ring he'd carefully picked out for his man.

"Pressure's on now. If it passes... "


"... when it passes, we're going ot have to go through with it."

"Cold feet?"

Steve smiled at Edward and kissed him tenderly. "Not at all. How could I possibly, what with all the registering we're about to do? And the showers and bachelor parties."

"Rein that in a minute, mister. That's not what it's all about."

All the color drained from Steve's face. "You're right. There's all the planning! There's the invitations and the reception and the catering. Oh God, we've got so much to do."

"Babe, we don't even have a date set yet."

"But it'll here before you know it! And we'll have to get a venue, a church, god, what's the license process going to be like?"

Edward stroked Steve's hair. "If things go right, the same as the process of straight people."

"And then... "

Edward kissed Steve's head. "Steven, all that... none of that matters. Hell, we could get married by a justice of the peace and I'd be ok. I just want to be with you."

Steve kissed Edward back. "Me too. But, I mean, maybe a little party... "

Edward chuckled. "Let's set the date at least."

Steve closed his laptop, turned off the light, and spooned with Edward. "How about... the day the bill passes?"

Edward smiled in the dark. "Deal."



David tossed the gnocchi and sauce in the pan and plated it for Josh.

"This is delicious," Josh said, taking a bite.

"Thanks. It's... well, it's David's recipe."

"So how's Charlie doing?" Josh asked, taking another bite of gnocchi.

"It's not looking good," David said, pouring them both another glass of wine. "I went with him to meet with his union delegate and unless the student retracts the statement... "

"Christ," Josh said. "I feel so bad for him. He's really... he's a sweet guy."

"What happened with the two of you, anyway? You guys dated for... ?"

"Bout a month or so. And I don't know, really. When we first met, there was this immediate spark, you know? Like I was supposed to be at that exact time and place to meet him and I don't know why."

"He has that way about him," David chuckled.

"Did you guys ever date or anything?"

"Almost. That's how we met, actually. We started chatting on and we'd made plans to see a movie but he cancelled last minute. So I stayed in and that's when I started chatting with David. And the rest, well... "

"Do you ever wonder what would've happened? With you and Charlie?"

"We would've killed each other," David laughed. "David on the other hand, huge crush on him."

"You guys should've... tried what we did. Do. Are doing?"

"With Charlie? No... I mean, well the thought never occurred to us until you."

Josh smiled. "So when is David due home?"

"He's not actually. He's visiting his mother for the week."

"Oh. So this is... "

"Just dinner," David said, sipping his wine. Josh's foot traced its way up David's leg.

"How about some dessert?"

"David and I agreed that we wouldn't separately."

"Then why did you invite me over?".

"I don't know, I... "

"I think you do." Josh's gaze pierced right through David. David wiped his mouth and put his napkin on his plate.

"I'm getting pretty tired Josh. I should get to bed."

Josh grinned and got up from the table. "Alright, I'll get going." He stopped at the front door and looked back at David, who watched him go with such longing. "A week's a long time. Call me if you change your mind."



Robbie sat in his room trembling with fear and despair as his parents paced outside his bedroom in the hallway. The phone rang continuously and his mother snatched it quickly.

"Who?" he could hear his mother say. "Listen hear, Alex, you little faggot, let's get one thing clear: you are never seeing my son again. I don't care if you think he's your boyfriend or God knows what else, but do not call here again." And the phone slammed down.

"This is your fault! You coddle him!" his father bellowed.

"Well maybe if you'd spent more time with him... "

"You little bitch!" Robbie heard a loud smack as his mother uttered a scream and knocked over framed pictures as she hit the ground. Robbie began to sob quietly, waiting for another round of bruises on top of the ones that hadn't healed yet. He wished he could call or text Alex, ask him for help, ask him for advice, but his parents had taken his cell phone away. He would jump onto Facebook and cry out for help or even email Mr. Parker and tell him he was sorry and that he didn't know what to do, but his parents had taken away his computer. He looked out the window and wondered what life on the other side was like. He hadn't been allowed to leave the house for two weeks and for most of it he barely left his room for fear of his father's wrath.

"... but they do electroshock therapy or worse!" he could hear his mother say.

"It's either that or I beat the gay out of him," his father said. "Pastor says he's sent lots of boys to this place and they come back regular."

"What if we just talk to him? Or send him to a shrink?"

"So what? They can tell him that everything's alright? That what he feels is normal? No, we're sending him to this place and that is that."

Robbie ran to his door and locked it. He pushed his chest of drawers in front of it and collapsed to the floor, sobbing hysterically. When he first realized he was gay, Robbie scoured the internet for a way to be normal. He found stories about conversion places like his dad wanted to send him to. People submerged in ice water, shocked with electrodes while being shown pornography. It sounded like Hell.

What could these people at this place think they could do that he hadn't tried himself? Didn't they think he'd try to cure himself, pray the gay away? But God hadn't heard that prayer nor the prayers for this nightmare to be over. Desperate, he realized there was only one way out of this life. Out of this nightmare. To stop all the pain at home, the pain with his father. The confusion, the fear, the anger.

He ran to his bed, gathered his sheets, and fashioned a sort of rope out of them, then looped it around. He looked and measured exactly how much he would need.

He needed out, once and for all. And this was the only way.

Volume 7 launches March 25th! Catch up here:

Volume 1 -
Week One, Week Two, Week Three, Week Four, Week Five

Volume 2 -
Week One, Week Two, Week Three, Week Four, Week Five

Volume 3 -
Week One, Week Two, Week Three, Week Four, Week Five

Volume 4 -
Week One, Week Two, Week Three, Week Four, Week Five

Volume 5 -
Week One, Week Two, Week Three, Week Four, Week Five


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