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

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11-15 (Recap)

Brad messes up while lives collide at an art show in Week 3 of BOYSTOWN Volume 8. Volume 9 launches on June 17!

11-15 (Recap)
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Brad messes up while lives collide at an art show in Week 3 of BOYSTOWN Volume 8. Volume 9 launches on June 17!


"You what?" Charlie asked, sitting up in bed. 

"I applied before we met. I never thought I'd get in but...I did." 

"But...where? How?" 

"I don't know yet. It's all about playing the waiting game now. I could be placed in a month. Or six months from now." 

"It's And how long would you be gone?" 

"Nine months. A year. It's all's new to me too."

Charlie lay back down, his head spinning. "But...we just found each other." 

"That's why I'm asking: will you go with me?" 

"I'm about to get tenure, Ben. I don't know if I could leave it behind." 

"You could write, like you wanted to when you were a kid. I don't know where I'd end up. Africa, Asia, who knows. It's something I've always wanted to do, but...I don't know if I could lose you." 

Charlie thought about a promise to himself he made years ago: he'd move out of Boystown by the time he turned thirty. Now, with his thirtieth birthday looming in a couple of months, laying next to the man he loved who was proposing a major life change and adventure...he didn't know what to do. 

"Just promise'll think about it. Don't say no. Just think about it." 

Charlie turned and faced him. "Ok." 


"Yeah," Charlie said, kissing him. "Promise."




"You're at my mirror," DeLisha heard a sassy voice behind him in the cramped dressing area at Roscoe's. 

"Child, this has been my mirror for years," DeLisha said, not dignifying the accuser with a look back at her direction. 

"It weren't yours last week when I WON," said Sassy Voice, daring to enter DeLisha's personal bubble.

"Audiences are known for their lapses in judgment." 

"You keep telling yourself that, you dried up old queen," Sassy Ebony Goddess said. 

"Who the fuck does that little queen think she is," DeLisha asked the quirky queen beside her. 

"Jai Owe? You don't want to cross that bitch," quoth Alexis Bevilles. "She's on fire." 

"Fires were made to be extinguished," DeLisha declared, her eyes narrowing to slits. 

And then the Race was on.

"That was amazing," Hunter said, as the Drag Race crowd gave way to dance floor desperation. 

"It was adequate," DeLisha said, ripping off her wig and wiping off the pound of makeup from her face. 

"Darryl, I haven't seen you perform like that since...well, ever." 


"You were robbed. You should've won tonight." 

"I'm tired of should'ves. I'm sick of dwelling in the past. Maybe it's time to hang up my sequins forever. You know you've hit rock bottom when drag is a drag." 

"That's from something isn't it?" 

"Don't trump my Kushner quoting with an Elizabeth Taylor reference." 

"And now you've lost me completely. What's up?" 

"Hunter, I can't begin to tell you how much I appreciate you coming tonight despite all the...untowardness between us. But you may have just witnessed my last performance." 

"Daryl, seriously, what's up?" 

DeLisha looked at that fucking sassy bitchy, Jai Owe, who'd reigned supreme again, ruling the dance floor with his over-the-hill twink entourage. 

"They just keep...getting younger. And hungrier. I can't compete with that." 

"Stop it. You are DeLisha Fucking DeVille. And you're a Storm. We never say die." 

Daryl looked at him, his face half gone, his thinning hair matted down with sweat. "But we will some day. And you and me, little brother, a lot sooner than others." 

Hunter looked away, speechless. Darryl kissed him on the cheek. 

"Be well," he said, as he slipped out the patio door, never once looking back at Hunter.



Brad was enjoying a pint on a patio before the storm was sure to hit. He didn't give a fuck, it was the first nice night in Chicago in forever. Felt like it could almost be summer. Mostly, he was just happy to be out of Boystown for a night. And, he hated to think it but, he was happy not to be with Tyler at this very moment. All of Tyler's focus on how "gay" Brad actually was weighed heavy on him. It was the same pressure he felt from Becka the closer they got to the wedding that never was. Worst of all, he might've lied a little bit to make Tyler feel better and to get off his case. Truth be told, math was never Brad's strong suit and when pressed for an actual gay percentage (which was the most fucktarded thing he'd ever heard of) he might've fibbed in favor of gay.

Truth be told, he just wasn't sure and he knew Tyler was sick of hearing that. Maybe there was something wrong with him. It was a big enough step for him to come to terms that he liked guys, now it had to be this big grand statement that he had to make to the world to appease the one person who treated him decently in his life. Eighty-seven percent gay, he'd said. That was a solid B in the gay grade book, right? If he actually had to tally up all the people he'd slept with since he started sleeping with people, it'd be an even split. If you counted Cub Scouts, well, that might skew the numbers again in the gay favor. But, why was it so important to everyone? And more importantly, why was it so unimportant to him? 

He hoped to find the answer at the bottom of his sixth pint. Or maybe it was at the other end of his third shot of tequila. The clouds looked ominous as the winds started to blow the napkin holders off of the surrounding tables. There was a twenty percent chance of storms coming. He'd have to go in soon, take shelter somewhere. Maybe the answer was at the bottom of a seventh pint. Or a fourth shot. Or in the skirt of that hot girl that hadn't stopped starring at Brad from across the patio since he sat down.



Travell held the door open for LaTrice and Tyler as they left Haven. 

"Shit, I forgot my umbrella," LaTrice said. "I'll be right back." She gave Travell a quick kiss and ran back in. 

"Things seem to be going well," Tyler said. 

"That's my boo right there," Travell said, beaming. 

"And to think she was right under your nose the whole time." 

"Under my nose? I was all in her face all. The. Time. But she woke up, saw me for who I was, and gave it a chance." 

"What changed?" 

"I loves her for her. See, you didn't know me before you got here, but I was all over the place. On the DL, sleepin' with my boys on the fly. Trying to fuck with girls, trying to prove I was a man. I didn't know whether I comin or goin, gay or straight, and here the fuck am I, right?" 


"Sometimes you just meet someone, and it don't matter what the fuck they are, boy, girl, gay straight, whatever, you just feel what you feel and you give it a chance. You don't even think about it, you just know." 

"So if you had to label yourself..." 

"My label is LaTrice's man. And I am proud as FUCK of it." 

"Will you...I gotta run. Will you tell LaTrice I said see her tomorrow?" 

"For sure man," Travell said as Tyler ran down the street, braving the rain to Brad's apartment. 


Brad was still in his boxers, looking hung over and worse for the wear, when he answered the door. 

"Tyler? What are you doing here?" Brad asked, standing in the doorway with the door half shut. 

"I wanted to see you. I know we've been in limbo for a while and I've been doing some thinking and..." 

"Hey, who's your friend?" a pretty blond girl, standing in just her bra and panties asked from behind Brad. 

Tyler took one look at her and one look at Brad and walked away.



"I can't believe you guys showed up," Hunter said, greeting Charlie and Tyler at the Cultural Center. 

"I can't believe you didn't tell us about it," Charlie said. 

"'ve both been busy..." 

"Never too busy for you, dude," Tyler said. 

"And it's not that big of a deal. It's only a small showing for all the City College Art Programs." 

"That is a big deal!" Charlie said. "Come on, how many people from your class got their assignments chosen to be exhibited for the end of the term?" 

"Just me," Hunter said sheepishly. 

"See...huge deal." 


Tyler wandered around the Cultural Center, admiring the art work in the gallery as a jazz band played in the foyer. This is the City he'd moved to, this is why it couldn't compare to Strongsville. One could lose oneself in the beauty of a big city, something new around corner, not like a...  

"Small town, huh?" The hairs on the back of Tyler's neck bristled at the familiar voice. He cautiously turned. 

"Andy, what are you doing here?" 

"I'm teaching a semester of art next fall, thought I'd check out how kids getting their gen eds and going to vocational school express themselves through art." 

"Ah. Well, I should get..." 

Andy stopped Tyler from running off. "You look good." 

Fitz roamed the gallery trying to find Hunter. He stopped in front of a charcoal sketch:a forlorn Asian American man looking distantly out a window. It was Charlie. 

"Doesn't it speak volumes?" said a middle aged man behind Fitz. "Sorry, I didn't mean to startle you. I'm just so proud, this artist is one of my best students." 

"Oh, you're Hunter's teacher? I'm Fitz. Caleb. Fitzgerald. Fitz Everyone calls me Fitz." 

"A pleasure. What do you think of the piece?" 

"Oh I don't know from art. I'm not...the type, I guess." 

"Surely you must feel something." 

Fitz studied it for a moment. "'s a good likeness. It looks exactly like Charlie." 

"It's more than that. Look how Hunter caught the exact tone of melancholy in the eyes. The tension in the subject's hand as he presses it against the window. I tell you, I've seen a lot of sketches in my day, beautifully executed, sure, but this one...I feel as if it almost has a soul of it's own." 

"He's good!" Fitz beamed with pride. 

"Usually I'd say it's because the subject was so intriguing. But again, it's in the negative's apparent that Hunter feels something for the subject. Whether he knows it, deep down inside, there is passion and feeling there." 

Fitz stood there in front of the piece, studying it, trying to see what this artsy fartsy type saw that he wasn't. He saw none of what Hunter's teacher said. Maybe therein lay the problem. He glanced around the room again and saw Hunter and Charlie by the jazz band. Smiling, laughing. They fit so perfectly in this scene, something that Hunter would probably do more of. Which meant that Fitz would have to go to show his support. Fitz looked at them from a far: they just fit so perfectly together. 

Charlie looked down and saw Ben's number flashing on his screen, which was odd since Ben was supposed to be at work. 

"Sorry, I have to take this." 

"Don't worry about it. I've got to find Fitz anyway." 

"Hello?" Charlie asked as Hunter searched the crowd. 

"It's about Doctors Without Borders..." 

"They were able to replace you? You'll be able to stay?" 

"No," Ben said. "They've placed me. I leave for Africa on Monday."



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