I Love Luke Skywalker - Yes I Do (by Grant Bentley)

Image from an article at starwars.wikicities.com, distributed under the terms of the GNU Free

I Love Luke Skywalker — Yes I Do

By Grant Bentley

It was Halloween and, lucky me, I had two choices. One, sit at home all evening handing out candy to the ‘kiddies’ as Mom called them, or two, take my darling little brother, Matty, and his darling little friends trick or treating. Now, considering I wanted to continue living, I decided ‘Fuck that!’ would be a somewhat inappropriate reply. So…sit by the door handing out candy to a bunch of little freaks or…walk all over the freakin’ neighbourhood with four twelve-year-olds hyped on sugar, running in ten different directions at once…hmmm…let me see. Okay, after due consideration, I was willing to make the obvious sacrifice. I would spend a perfectly good Monday evening sitting at home handing out candy to a bunch of little freaks. This I could do for my sweet, loving, devoted, mother…who, by the way, wouldn’t think twice about grounding my skinny little ass until I was thirty if I didn’t. Oh yeah, and handing out candy meant eating candy. I could do that.

Oh, I should also mention that one cannot hand out candy to a bunch of little freaks on Halloween or chase four kids all over the freakin’ neighbourhood without first dressing up like a freak. This year, knowing how my friends and I were Star Wars fanatics, Mom decided I would be Yoda. Now don’t get me wrong, Yoda is a wonderful character, in fact he’s one of my real-life heroes. However, Yoda is like three foot nothing and I happen to be six foot two. So…I’m thinking there’s something not quite kosher here. Well, leave it to Mom to make it kosher. I would be spending the entire evening on my knees. Thank God I didn’t choose to take Matty and his buddies trick or treating.

Now I can think a couple of reasons to be on my knees, but handing out candy to a bunch of little freaks isn’t one of them. Also, I don’t remember Yoda’s knuckles dragging on the ground when he walked. Anyway there I was, at the door, on my knees, knuckles dragging on the floor, talking Yoda talk and handing out candy to a bunch of little freaks. God, could life get any better than this?

Actually, yes it could…when I saw Luke Skywalker leading Princess Leia and Wicket up the front walk. Now I realize there’s a slight age difference between Yoda and Luke, but I was quite willing to overlook that minor detail. Of course there were a couple of other minor details. I had never seen young Skywalker in the neighbourhood or at school before so was I likely to see him again after tonight? And, if I did what was the likelihood he and I were of the same persuasion? Plus, I wasn’t so sure I could overlook the hysterical laughter. I mean come on, even Yoda has feelings.

“Size matters not. Look at me. Judge me by my size do you?” I said forcibly as I dropped some candy into the offered bags.

“I’m sorry master, I did not mean to offend you,” he replied, “Will you accept my humble apology?”

“Meditate on this, I will,” I replied

“What are you doing later master?” he asked, “May I try to make it up to you?”

“No. Try not. Do or do not. There is no try,” I responded.

“A trip to Murphy’s it is then,” he said, “I’ll see you about nine-thirty.”

“See me you will young Skywalker. Waiting here will I be.” I answered, “With you the Force shall be this night…go now.”

“That wasn’t really Yoda was it?” a young voice asked as they walked away.

There was a slight chuckle before he replied, “No kiddo, that wasn’t really Yoda.”

“His arms are kinda way too long,” the same young voice explained.

Their exchange almost made the evening worthwhile…almost. However, young Skywalker did invite me to go to Murphy’s with him, and for some inexplicable reason, I had a good feeling that this just might be a worthwhile evening after all. Of course, he hadn’t seen my face, but I kinda liked my face, so I didn’t think it would work against me.

But, back to handing out goodies. Now I don’t mean to complain, but three hours on your knees gets to be a bit much. And that one run to the bathroom to pee didn’t quite do it for me. Especially considering I had to grab onto the handrail just to stand up. And is a seventeen year old supposed to hear crackling noises coming from his knees? I think not. Next year I’m going to be Chewbacca. Screw this undersized, knuckle-dragging, short shit.

Mom, or should I say, Morticia Addams, finally arrived home with Matty and his friends. Ever watch four twelve-year-olds, who’ve just eaten a pound of sugar each? They give a whole new meaning to the term buzzed. Of course, when they saw me stand up with my costume ending above my knees, it didn’t help. They nearly peed themselves laughing. I’m not sure if I looked like Yoda on stilts or a really ugly chick in a short dress. I, however, refused to be offended. I’m a bigger man than that. Besides, at least now with Morticia home, I could stand up and walk around. She could feed sugar to the little freaks at the door for a while.

By nine, we hadn’t seen any little freaks for almost half an hour. Well except for the four on our living room floor. I was now free, so I went to my room and began to change. It was gradual but inevitable. The persona began dissolving. The change back to the human form had begun. A mere thirty minutes from now I would once again be facing young Skywalker. Not as his Jedi master, Yoda. Not this time. This time would be different.

At exactly nine-thirty, the doorbell rang and I jumped up to answer it.

Standing there with a big smile on his face was young Skywalker, blond hair, blue eyes, and dimples to die for.

“Hi come in,” I said.

“Hi, thanks,” he replied.

“So, when I’m not busy harnessing the Force, I’m normally referred to as Zander,” I introduced myself.

“Luke,” he replied. “For real,” he added when I started to laugh.

Of course Mom was at the door in an instant to see who I was talking to. I introduced Luke to her and she immediately offered him some candy.

“No thanks,” he responded, “I talked to Zander earlier when I came by with my little brother and sister. I asked him if he wanted to go with me to Murphy’s for a bit.”

“Oh how thoughtful,” Mom replied glancing at me, “I’m sure he’d love to go.”

“Uh…thanks Mom, but I can handle this,” I said, “Why don’t you help the boys sort their candy?”

“Okay, okay, I can take a hint,” she said laughing, “Nice to meet you Luke. I hope we see lots more of you.”

“Oh God, Mom…please,” I almost begged.

“Okay, I’m gone,” she said and walked off towards the boys.

“Sorry about that,” I said to Luke, “You ready to go?”

“Yep,” he replied, “Let’s go.”

“I like your Mom,” he said laughing as we walked down our front walk.

“Give it time,” I said with a grin.

As we were walking over to Murphy’s which, unfortunately, was ten blocks away, I learned that Luke’s family had just moved to town two weeks ago. His dad worked for a major computer networking company and had been transferred here from Toronto. Luke didn’t get here until two days ago as he had stayed with friends to finish his mid-term exams before leaving. He was seventeen and a high school senior. He lived four houses down from us…bonus. Not that I was really surprised for some reason, I also learned that he was gay and totally out…double double bonus. He had come out when he was fourteen. He learned that I had lived here all my life. My mom was CEO for a leading accounting firm. My dad was a lawyer. Mom and Dad were divorced and my dad lived in Vancouver. I was also seventeen and a high school senior. And, I was gay and had been out since January. Oh, and we were both big Star Wars fans…like duh.

When we finally got to Murphy’s, we each ordered a milkshake and one of Murphy’s giant banana splits to share. Once we got our order, we found a table close to the front window and began chatting and enjoying our ten thousand calorie order.

“So how did you know about Murphy’s?” I asked as we were chatting.

“My dad grew up here and this is the first place he took us after I arrived on Saturday,” he replied.

“Cool, I love Murphy’s,” I said, “But Mom won’t bring us here. She says she gains weight just walking by the place.”

“Speaking of your mom, sorry, but I just gotta ask this,” he said laughing, “Does your Mom come on to all the boys for you, or am I special?”

“Oh God, that was so embarrassing,” I said, “She might as well have asked you if you were gay and available, and told you I was gay and available.”

“Are you available?” he asked.

I looked at him and grinned for a few seconds before responding, “Mmmm…yeah I guess you could say I am.”

“You guess?” he queried.

“Okay, I haven’t had a date since I was twelve,” I said laughing, “So yeah, I’m available.”

“Since you were twelve?” he asked grinning, “Ouch.”

“Well I didn’t come out until this year,” I said in my own defence, “So I have an excuse.”

“Okay, I’ll accept that,” he said.

“What about you, were you dating anyone in Toronto?” I asked.

“I had a boyfriend for about a year when I was fifteen. I’ve dated off and on since,” he replied, “But not in the last several months.”

“I guess that’s good,” I said, “It would be hard to have to move and leave someone behind.”

“Yeah, that happens to a lot of high school romances,” he said, “That’s what happened with Joey. His dad got transferred and I got left behind. I think I cried for a week. It wasn’t fun.”

“I bet it’s not,” I replied.

“Okay this is getting depressing,” he said with a chuckle, “Topic change. Who’s your favourite Star Wars character?”

I just looked at him and grinned. “Luke Skywalker’s at the top of my list at the moment,” I said.

“And before this moment?” he asked grinning.

“Han Solo,” I replied, “He’s such a brash smartass on the outside but a total sweetheart on the inside.”

“Mine has always been Yoda,” he said laughing, “But thanks to you, I’ll never be able to look at him again without laughing.”

“Oops, sorry about that,” I said grinning, “But you can blame my mom for that one. I don’t know how she figured I could pull off being Yoda at six two.”

“Well her idea did have some serious entertainment value,” he said with a chuckle.

“I guess,” I replied, “I just hope no one from school saw me.”

“Right, school. We should probably be thinking about heading back soon,” he said glancing at his watch, “School tomorrow.”

We finished our shake and banana split and started the long walk home. Again, we talked about whatever came to mind. We covered a fair bit about his life in Toronto and how much bigger and more hectic it was than Calgary. He said he liked the pace of life, or what he’d seen of it here, much better. We talked about how much I missed my dad since he had moved to Vancouver and how much fun it was when I went to visit him. I actually love Vancouver…in the summer when it’s not raining that is. There weren’t too many personal topics we hadn’t covered by the time we got back to my place and had to part company.

When I went to bed that night, I thought about everything we had discussed for a long time as I slowly drifted off to sleep. I thought about the fact that we had not only clicked right off, but there had been an instant trust between us as well. I thought about him too. He was funny, intelligent, kind-hearted, gentle, and seemed totally genuine. I also got the impression that, although he seemed strong and determined, he was very sensitive and could be easily hurt. His sensitive side came through when he mentioned Joey. But his strength came through when he mentioned coming out at fourteen. I mean that takes courage and some serious inner strength. I didn’t have the courage to come out till I was seventeen and fifty other guys and girls at school were already out.

He was also the first thing I thought about the next morning when I woke up. I was up, showered and just finishing breakfast when the doorbell rang. I got up and answered it. It was Luke with a big smile on his face. He was wearing white sneakers with purple stripes, a purple very well fitted shirt, a large rainbow pendant, and very nicely fitting black skinny jeans. He was definitely going to make an impression when he walked into the school for the first time.

Since we had lots of time, we didn’t hurry on our way to the school. Our first stop when we got there was the office. His dad had registered him several days before, so all he needed to do was pick up his schedule, get his books, and his locker assignment. The secretary was pleased to see me with him, as I could show him around and that simplified things for her. Once we got his stuff, we headed for his locker. It was actually just down the hall from mine. Once we had his books stowed away, we looked at his schedule. Except for Biology, he had all the same classes and teachers as me. That suited us both just fine. Our first two classes were English and French. He grabbed his books and we wandered over to my locker, I grabbed my books and we were on our way to English.

As soon as we sat down in the classroom, Bev Wicks was right there, all smiles and giggles, and wiggling her ass all over the place. I was actually quite surprised she didn’t dislocate her back. She gave him the, “Hi! You must be new here!” intro. I just looked at him and gave him the ‘well duh, you’ve never been here before, so yeah, you must be new here’ look and he just grinned. Then she saw his pendant. Well, the smile disappeared, the giggles disappeared, and she disappeared, minus the wiggle. Something I’m sure her spine was very thankful for.

“That will be the last time you get hit on by one of the school’s sluts,” I said grinning, “Your preference will be all over the school before lunch.”

Luke almost burst out laughing when we looked over and noticed her texting like there was no tomorrow.

“Whoa, make that female sluts,” I said as Cruze Westmore came bouncing over. Before he could get to us, Luke looked lovingly at me, smiled, reached over, brushed the hair off my forehead and ran his fingers gently down my cheek. Cruze made a distinct and sudden left turn, bee-lined for the back of the room and sat in the last desk of the row beside us.

As he did, we heard, “Get a room,” from the desk behind us. I turned to see Charlie Morrissey trying to fake gag, but it wasn’t working, as he couldn’t keep the grin off his face. I just had time to introduce Luke and Charlie when Mr. Leonard walked in and class began. He said welcome to Luke, quickly introduced him to the class, and his lesson began.

“So, what, none of the guys here good enough for you so you had to import one?” Charlie asked grinning, as we headed out the door when class was over.

“Look around,” I replied laughing as I pointedly glanced towards Cruze, “What do you think?”

“Point taken” he said to me. Then to Luke he said, “By the way, welcome.”

“Thanks,” Luke replied with a grin, and the three of us hurried to get to French before the bell.

We had no incidents in French other than Ms. Felder had Luke introduce himself and tell us where he was from, etc. Thankfully, the class didn’t drag on as usual and we were soon on our way to the cafeteria for lunch. We got our food and headed over to my usual table where Charlie, Greg, Kevin, and Theo were already sitting. I introduced Luke to everyone and they immediately made him feel welcome…before they started picking on me that is.

“So, you finally found someone who doesn’t know you,” Greg said laughing.

“Fuck you,” I replied as I reached out and smacked his arm.

He immediately looked at Luke and said, “Okay, there’s his violent side. I hope you’re taking notes.”

“I think it’s supposed to be our job to try to make him look good,” Kevin said, “You know, cover up his flaws, not point them out.”

“Good luck with that,” Theo remarked.

“You guys are so fucked,” I said, faking a pout, “I don’t know why I even associate with you.”

“That’s easy, we’re the only ones who’ll talk to you,” Greg responded laughing.

“Like I said,” Charlie said to Luke grinning, “Welcome.”

“By the way, if you take anything we say seriously,” Greg said, “You need to go to the counselling office right away and get some serious help.”

The rest of the lunch break was reduced to normal conversation and since I was the target of the day, I was also the object of much of the discussion. Thankfully, my portrayal of Yoda never came up. One more reason to like Luke. We did spend a minute or two talking about movies, the latest CD’s, and the English assignment that was due in a week. When the warning bell went, we were on our way to Physics. An hour and a half later, we were on our way to our last class of the day. We dropped Luke off at his Biology class and headed for Math 31, which is calculus. Thankfully, math was one of those classes where the time never dragged. We needed to be focused on what we were doing so the time flew by. As soon as class was over, I grabbed my homework, met Luke at his locker and we were on our way home.

Once again, we took our time and walked leisurely home. Since Mom wouldn’t be home until after six, and I knew Matty would be at his friend Bobby’s till Mom picked him up, I went to Luke’s. As we walked in the door, Luke called out, “Hi Mom.”

We heard a, “Hi Honey,” from the direction of the kitchen.

As we walked into the kitchen, she looked at me and remarked, “You must be Zander. We’ve heard so much about you, it’s good to meet you.”

“Thank you,” I replied as I glanced at Luke and grinned as he blushed, “It’s good to meet you too…”

“Call me Fran,” she said when I hesitated, “All Luke’s friends do. It’s so much less formal than Mrs. Skywalker.”

When I looked at her with my mouth open, she just laughed and said, “Okay, it’s much less formal than Mrs. Richardson.”

“Mom,” Luke said, “You have to stop doing that. People know I’m related to you and it really doesn’t look good for me.”

“Oh and your room covered in aliens and Star Wars characters does?” she responded laughing.

Just then the backdoor flew open and I assume the transformed versions of Princess Leia and Wicket ran in, Wicket leading the way.

A simple quiet, “Hi,” came from Princess Leia.

“Hi Mom. Hi Luke. Hi Yoda,” came in rapid fire succession from Wicket.

“Yoda?” their mom asked.

“This isn’t Yoda,” Luke replied, “This is my friend Zander. Zander these are my favourite siblings, Mikey and Jackie.”

I got a little wave from Jackie and, “Hi, why are you wearing Yoda’s ring then…and what’s a sibling?” from Mikey.

“Yoda’s ring?” their mom asked.

“Yeah, this one,” he replied as he grabbed my hand and showed them my ring.

“You don’t miss much do you?” Luke remarked.

“Nope,” Mikey replied, “And thanks for the Mars Bar,” he added looking up at me.

“You’re welcome,” I replied, surprised he even noticed what I threw in his candy bag, never mind he remembered.

“And what’s a sibling?” he repeated looking at Luke.

“A sibling is a brother or sister,” Luke replied, “You and Jackie are my siblings and Jackie and I are your siblings.”

“So you and me are Jackie’s siblings,” he said.

“That’s right,” Luke said.

“What about Yoda?” he asked, “Is he like a sibling-in-law?”

Their mom, or Fran I guess I should say, just burst out laughing. “Oh God, Mikey, where do you come up with this stuff?” she asked.

Luke just looked at me and grinned as he said, “I hope so.”

“Me too,” Mikey said grinning, “Yoda’s cool,” then, in the next breath, he asked, “Can I go to Tommy’s?”

“May I?” Fran said to him.

“He’s kinda young for you to play with don’t cha think Mom?” he asked.

“I give up,” she said laughing, “Yes you can go to Tommy’s, but be back by 5:30.”

“Okay,” he said as he dashed out the door, almost as fast as he had entered it a few minutes ago.

“How can two boys be so far apart in age and yet be so much alike?” she asked no one in particular.

“Good genetics,” Luke replied laughing before telling his mom he was going to show me his room.

When we walked in the door, I froze. This was not a room, this was a shrine to Star Wars. He had everything. Posters, statues, figurines, everything you could imagine. After about half an hour of exploring and being given an explanation of where, how, and when he got each and every item, I realized what his mom meant when she said he and Mikey were alike. Neither one of them missed much, nor did they forget much. Once the tour was over, we flopped back on his bed and looked at the posters he had on his ceiling.

“Well you’ve met my siblings,” he said with a grin, “Jackie won’t say much more than ‘hi’ till she gets to know you. Mikey, on the other hand…is Mikey…and you…you’re Yoda.”

“He can’t really think I’m Yoda,” I said laughing.

“Of course not,” he replied with a laugh, “He knows you’re Zander, but that won’t stop him from calling you Yoda.”

“He’s such a total little sweetheart,” I said with a grin, “I guess I can be Yoda for a while.”

“I hate to tell you this,” he said, “But knowing Mikey, fifty years from now, you’ll still be Yoda.”

When I repeated, “Fifty years from now?” I just got a big grin from him.

“Maybe I should start calling him Wicket then,” I said laughing.

“He’d probably like that, he likes you,” Luke said smiling, “And he’s an excellent judge of character. Like we said, he doesn’t miss much.”

We just lay there for the next hour or so, simply talking about life, dreams, siblings, and whatever else came to mind. After about a half hour, I felt his hand brush mine. When I didn’t move mine, I felt him turn his hand over, slide it under my hand and lace his fingers through mine. When he did, I just gave his hand a little squeeze and got a squeeze back.

As we were laying there, my cell rang. It was Mom and she wanted to know if I wanted KFC or Subway for dinner. I opted for Subway.

We were still lying there when Mikey came flying into the room and landed in between us on Luke’s bed. We were just able to pull our hands apart before he landed.

“Don’t you knock?” Luke asked him.

“I don’t gotta knock unless the door’s closed,” he replied, “You said so.”

“Yes I did,” Luke responded, “So did you have fun at Tommy’s?”

“Yep,” he replied, “They got a trampoline. ‘Cept his brother kept hoggin’ it. He’s not very nice. I think he’s from the dark side.”

Since he was being quite serious, I had to bite my lip to keep from laughing. I think Luke was doing the same, because it took him several seconds to respond.

“Well did he at least give you a few turns?” Luke asked.

“He did after his mom yelled at him,” Mikey replied, before asking, “You guys were holding hands. Are you boyfriends?”

“Uh…we’re working on it,” Luke said, as he looked at me and gave me a smile.

“Cool,” Mikey responded, “Oh yeah, we’re supposed to wash our hands for dinner,” he added as he jumped up and dashed towards the bathroom.

“I guess that’s my cue to head for home,” I said with a chuckle, “Mom should be home soon with my dinner anyway.”

“You can stay and eat with us if you want,” Luke said.

“Thanks, but Mom will be expecting me,” I said, “Some other time though…for sure.”

With that, we got up and Luke walked me to the front door. “See you later Fran,” I called out to his mom, before saying more quietly, “I’ll see you in the morning Luke.”

“See you,” Fran called out.

“Count on it,” Luke said with a big smile, “If I didn’t have three or four hours of homework and catch-up to do, I’d ask you to come back over after dinner, but…I do.”

“You just have the one chapter in Bio to catch up on and one topic in Physics so that shouldn’t take long,” I said.

“Nope, tonight should do it,” he replied.

“Good,” I responded, “See about 8:15 then. G’night.”

“G’night,” he replied, as he leaned in and gave me a quick kiss. I quickly returned it, and I was on my way home…grinning from ear to ear.

Just before I got to our driveway, I heard a little voice yell, “G’night Yoda!”

“G’night Wicket!” I yelled back as I saw Mikey standing on the sidewalk waving. I gave him a little wave back and he disappeared back into the house.

Mom was just pulling into the driveway as I got there. “Who was that?” Matty asked.

“That was Mikey, Luke’s little brother,” I replied.

“Looks like you were a hit with him,” Mom responded grinning, “How about with Luke?”

“You don’t give up do you?” I asked.

“Nope,” she replied laughing.

Once we got in the house and got our dinners unwrapped, I told her all about my day with Luke. When I told her about Mikey and his antics, I had her laughing so hard she was finding it difficult to eat. Matty, on the other hand, just sat quietly eating his sub.

As soon as we finished dinner, I headed up to my room to start my homework. Just as I was sitting down at my desk, Matty knocked on my door.

“Hey,” I said, “What’s up?”

“Can I ask you something?” he asked as he walked over to me.

“Yeah, of course,” I replied.

“Mom asked if you were a hit with Luke,” he said a little nervously.

“Yeah?” I questioned.

“Does that mean…” he hesitated, “Does that mean you like guys?”

“Uh…yeah,” I said also with a little hesitation.

“How come you told Mom and not me?” he asked quietly.

“Oh God,” I replied, “I’m sorry Matty. I never thought about it. I guess I figured if Mom knew, you knew, and I do have a rainbow flag above my bed.”

“I did know,” he said, “I’m twelve and I’m not stupid. I just wanted you to tell me. Brothers are supposed to tell each other stuff. Specially important stuff.”

“Matty,” I said quietly as I reached out and took his hands in mine, “I’m so sorry bud. I promise, from now on, I will tell you about all my important stuff first, even before I tell Mom.”

“It’s just we don’t talk much anymore and I miss it,” he said as he teared up.

I immediately pulled him into a hug as I said, “Matty, I really am sorry. I guess I haven’t been a very good brother lately. Just know I love you more than anybody. Don’t ever forget that.”

As he pulled back, he asked, “Do you love me more than Luke?”

“Yeah, I do,” I assured him.

“Okay,” he responded with a little smile breaking through, “But it’s a different kind of love isn’t it?”

“Yeah it is,” I replied.

“Does Mom know you love Luke?” he asked.

“Not yet,” I said, “I told you first. Actually I haven’t even told Luke yet.”

“Thanks,” he said in almost a whisper as he threw his arms around me and gave me a big hug which I returned.

“I love you too Zander,” he said as he broke away and gave my a big grin, “I should let you do your homework now.”

“Yeah,” I said grinning back, “I’ll be in big trouble tomorrow if I don’t get it done.”

“Yeah,” he said as he disappeared into the hall.

‘Whoa’ I thought to myself, ‘Those were about the most emotional minutes of my life. I can’t believe I didn’t think to tell him.’ It actually took me a few minutes to get to where I could concentrate on my homework.

Luke was at the door to pick me up at exactly 8:15. Again, I got a quick kiss, and we heard a little giggle behind me. I quickly introduced Matty to Luke and the three of us were on our way. We took our time and Luke and Matty were chatting about Toronto, what high school was like, and whatever until Matty had to turn off toward the junior high school. Luke and I continued our leisurely walk to the high school.

“Matty’s a little sweetie,” Luke said as we were walking along.

“Yeah he is,” I said, and then told him about Matty’s little visit.

“Whoa,” Luke responded with a smile, “Some brotherly love went down last night. That is so cool.”

“Yeah it was,” I responded.

Once at school, we met up with Charlie and made our way to our lockers, throwing in what we didn’t need and digging out what we did. English and French aren’t the most stimulating courses, so the morning managed to really drag. Finally it was lunch time.

Almost before we sat down, Theo looked at us and grinned. “That didn’t take long,” he said.

“What?” I asked.

“Love,” Kevin replied, “Our little man has finally found someone to love.”

“And someone to love him back,” Theo said, “Who woulda guessed?”

At this point, Luke and I were blushing so badly, it would have been hard to deny that we had feelings for each other.

“It’s been like two days guys,” Greg said, “I think it’s a tad early to commit our little man to a love relationship. Let’s at least give it till tomorrow lunch time.”

“Okay,” Theo said with a smile. “But you guys are radiating something.”

“Is this where I run to the counselling office for some serious help?” Luke questioned.

“Nope,” Theo replied, “This is one of those very rare moments when we actually mean what we say. So take notice. It may be a very long time before the planets are in this exact same alignment again.”

Thankfully, Kevin redirected our conversation to other more mundane topics, like our English assignment that was due on Friday and nobody had started yet. We even got into the weather and the fact that we were into November and it hadn’t snowed yet. Finally the warning bell rang for afternoon classes and we were quickly cleaning up our mess and heading for our lockers. I don’t know about Luke, but with Physics and Math, my afternoon flew by. When I got to my locker, Luke was already there with his homework tucked away in his backpack. As soon as I had my homework ready to go, we were on our way home.

“So,” Luke said, “We’re radiating something, huh?”

“I guess so,” I replied with a chuckle.

“Well I know I’ve never felt so close to another guy this quickly before,” he said.

“I feel the same way,” I said, “But then I haven’t had a date since I was twelve.”

“That’s true,” he said grinning.

“You did hold my hand yesterday and you did kiss me though,” I said.

“I know,” he said with a grin, “It felt so natural.”

“Yeah it did,” I replied, “I think we should forget thinking about it and keep doing what feels natural.”

“Me too,” he said, as he laced his fingers through mine.

And that was the end of the discussion. We continued walking hand-in-hand. Even after a couple of guys honked their horn and one guy let out a wolf-whistle we just ignored them and continued on. The new subject for discussion became our English assignment. Luke had just learned about it yesterday. I, on the other hand, had known about it for two weeks. We decided that tonight we would work together on it and at least get an outline drawn up.

As we were walking up the street to Luke’s, our hands were suddenly pulled apart. In place of Luke’s hand, I felt a much smaller hand grip mine as did Luke.

“Hey guys,” a familiar little voice exclaimed.

“Hey Mikey,” Luke responded laughing.

“Hey Wicket,” I greeted as I gave his little hand a squeeze.

“You guys like each other lots,” he said, “Don’t cha?”

“Uh, yes we do,” Luke replied.

“I like you lots too.” He said, “But Mom says it’s a different kinda like. She says my like is a brother kinda like. But you guys’s is a in love kinda like. Like she and Dad got.”

Luke just looked at me and grinned before asking, “Are we the topic of everyone’s conversation?”

“Nope,” Mikey interrupted, “Just me and Mom. Nobody at school talked about you once.”

We both had no choice but to crack up laughing. When Mikey wanted to know what was so funny Luke told him we both just thought of something funny. Of course, he wanted to know what it was. Not wanting him to think we were laughing at him, after a little hesitation, Luke told him it was a big boy thing and he wouldn’t understand.

“How do you know?” he asked.

Now how many conversation-stopping big boy things can you bring up with a six year old? In the few seconds he had to think about it, and since six year olds are at that ‘girls are nasty’ stage, he replied, “It’s like a girl thing.”

“Ewwww,” Mikey responded, “Girls things are icky.”

“Yes they are,” Luke replied causing us both to crack up laughing again. I think Mikey figured we were losing it, so he didn’t ask any more questions. And, by this time, we were walking up their driveway anyway.

“Mom! Yoda’s here!” he yelled at the top of his voice as we walked in the door.

“Okay, okay, I’m not that far away. You don’t have to yell kiddo,” Fran said as she walked out of the kitchen.

“Hi Mom, we’re home,” Luke said laughing.

“Hi boys,” she responded, “How was your day?”

“Interesting,” Luke replied.

“That’s good to hear,” she said, “So school is finally interesting. Dad will be pleased to hear that.”

“May I go to Tommy’s,” Mikey asked.

“Oh my, things really are looking up,” she said laughing, “Yes you may. Just…”

“Be home by 5:30,” Mikey finished for her.

“Yes please,” she replied and he was gone.

“We have an English assignment to work on,” Luke said, “We’ll be up in my room if you need us.”

“Okay, thanks,” Fran said and we were on our way to his room.

We grabbed a loose-leaf binder each, flopped across Luke’s bed, and during the next hour and a half we worked on our assignment. The topic was, of course, the same for both of us, My Favourite Book, but we obviously couldn’t use the same book or ideas. We could use the same outline though because Mr. Leonard wouldn’t see our outlines. We decided on things like, main characters, story line, why we liked it, what we got out of it like, did it have any significant meaning for us, was it believable or a little far fetched, and stuff like that. Once we had our outline complete, we set it between us and started to fill in the details for each section on our own loose-leaf sheet. When Luke said something about Skeezie, Addie, Joe, and Bobby, I had to stop him and ask what book he was writing about. He laughed and said it was a book he had read in junior high, The Misfits. I just stared at him for a few seconds and then started to laugh. When he asked me what was so funny I turned my page so he could see it. On the top of the page was the title Totally Joe.

“Oh my God, you’ve got to be kidding,” he said laughing, “How weird is that.”

“Karma baby,” I said laughing, as I leaned over and gave him a quick kiss, “If there was any doubt before, it’s gone now. We are in sync…totally in sync.”

“No kidding,” he said with a big grin before he returned my kiss.

You see, our favourite books were not only ones we had both read in junior high, but they were both were written by the same author, James Howe, and both had a lot of the same characters.

After another half hour or so, we were at the point where we could write a pretty good detailed account of our books with comments and evaluation. Which was good, because in an instant, a certain little six year old was through the door, airborne, and headed right us.

“Whatcha doin’?” he asked as he landed on the bed between us.

“Homework for school,” Luke replied.

“How come I don’t gets homework?” he asked.

“You don’t get homework until you’re in the bigger grades,” I told him.

“Oh,” he said, “I don’t think I’d like homework. I couldn’t go to Tommy’s if I had homework. How come you need homework? Doesn’t your teacher teach you stuff in school? Miss Hathaway teaches me lotsa stuff. Mom says to wash our hands for dinner,” and he jumped up and once again dashed towards the bathroom.”

“I guess that’s my cue again,” I said laughing. This time, Luke slid over, wrapped an arm over me, and gave me a little more than a quick peck on the lips. I did try to kiss him back with the same feeling but I don’t think I quite had it.

As soon as he pulled back, I grinned at him and said, “I think I’m going to need a lot more practice to perfect that.”

“Well that can be arranged,” he replied grinning, as he kissed me again.

Just then we heard a car pull into the driveway. “That must be Dad,” he said, “He’s been dying to meet you.”

“Oh really?” I asked.

“Yep,” he replied grinning as he sat up, grabbed my hand and started to pull me up.

I quickly grabbed all my stuff and shoved it into my backpack and we headed up the hall. As we got to the front door, his dad was just walking in.

“Hi Dad,” he said, “This is Zander…Zander, this is my dad.”

“Hi Zander, it is Zander, right, not Yoda?” his dad asked with a chuckle.

“Yes, it’s Zander,” I replied smiling, “I’m pleased to meet you sir.”

“I’m pleased to meet you too son,” he responded, before looking at Luke, grinning, and saying, “You’re right he is really cute.”

“Oh God, Dad,” Luke managed to say as he turned bright red and his dad headed for the kitchen laughing.

“You think I’m cute?” I asked laughing.

“I’m sorry about him,” he replied, “And I think you’re way past cute.”

“Hmmm, thank you,” I said, as I gave him a quick kiss, “I think you are too.”

“Thanks,” he said, “But with your mom and my dad, I think we’re screwed.”

“We can handle them,” I said laughing, “But I better get going and let you eat. You want to come over after, and we can work on the rest of our homework together?”

“Yeah, for sure,” he replied, “About 7:00?”

“Yeah, 7:00’s perfect,” I said.

About 7:00, Luke was there with his Physics and French books. Mom met him at the door and almost rivalled his dad at embarrassing us. We managed to convince her that we had a lot to do and escaped to my room. As we were starting work on our Physics homework, there was a knock on my door. When I looked up, Matty was standing there with his homework in his hand.

“Hey,” I said, “Need some help?”

“No not really,” he said shyly, “But can I do my homework in here with you guys?”

I looked at him for a second, smiled and said, “Yeah of course, if you want.”

“Thanks,” he said with a big smile, as he dropped his books on the floor by my bed, flopped down, and flipped them open.

“I think there’s room up here,” Luke said as he slid over a little closer to me.

That got him a huge grin from Matty as he grabbed his stuff and flopped down on the bed beside us. We were all quickly immersed in our homework. Every once in a while I’d glance over at Matty. Most of the time he was working away, but occasionally I’d notice he was watching us with a big smile on his face. After about an hour, we had our Physics homework done and decided to take a break. Matty was still working on something, but he pushed it to one side and stretched.

“You got a lot of homework there bud,” I said to him.

“Yeah,” he replied, “Junior high sure is a lot harder than elementary school.”

“It doesn’t get any easier when you hit high school either,” Luke said.

“Thanks, I really needed to know that,” he said laughing.

All three of us just rolled onto our backs and stared at the ceiling. Actually, we stared at Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Yoda, and Obi-Wan.

“Some of the grade eight kids were picking on Bobby at lunch today,” Matty said after a few seconds.

“Why were they picking on him?” I asked, “Not that bullies really need a reason.”

“Cause they decided he looks gay,” he replied.

“Looks gay?” Luke responded, “That’s just bullshit. Gimme a break.”

“Yeah I know. I told them to Fuck off and leave him alone,” he said, “But they just started calling me a faggot and asked me if I was his boyfriend. And then one of them pushed me, but I was ready for it so I didn’t fall down like he figured I would. I just stood there staring at him and looking all pissed off. Then Jason from across the street and one of the other grade nine guys stepped in and told them to fuck off, and if they ever mess with Bobby or me again, they’d kick the shit outta them.”

“Whoa, that was pretty brave,” I said, “And that was pretty cool of Jason too. You need to stand up to bullies and don’t take any shit from them…and it’s good to stand up for your friends and other kids who are getting picked on. I’m so totally proud of you bud.”

“I’m proud to see you stand up to the bullies too,” Luke said, “But, be smart about it. You don’t want to get into a fight and get suspended. Or get your ass kicked if the guys are way bigger than you, or there’s two or three of them. Then, you should get a teacher out there to deal with them.”

“Yeah, I don’t need my ass kicked.” Matty said with a grin. Then after a slight pause, he asked, “Could you guys maybe talk to Bobby? He was really scared and looked pretty shook up about it. When the bell rang, I saw him sneak out of the school yard and run towards his house.”

Bobby and Matty had been friends for years, so if there was any way I could help him I would. Even though Luke didn’t know him at all, we both said we’d be happy to talk to Bobby anytime. We also got back to work on our homework so we would actually get it finished tonight. At about 9:30, Mom poked her head in the door to remind Matty it was nearly bedtime.

As he got up and started for the door, he looked back at us grinned and said, “Good night and thanks guys.”

We both said, “Good night,” and he was off to get ready for bed.

It was a couple of days later that Matty told us that he had finally persuaded Bobby to talk to us. I was a little surprised because Bobby was almost like a second little brother to me, so I knew something was up with him if he was nervous about talking to me. The next day, after school got out, Luke and I headed directly for my house. We grabbed some chips and four cans of Coke and stretched out on my bedroom floor. About three minutes after we got home, Matty knocked on my door and came in with a very nervous looking Bobby following closely behind him.

“Hey guys,” I said as they came into my room, “We got Cokes and chips if you want.”

“Thanks,” Matty replied as they sat down beside us. Then after a awkward prolonged silence, he poked Bobby and said, “You can’t find two better people to talk to than Luke Skywalker and Yoda.”

As nervous as he was, he couldn’t help but smile.

“Matty told us what went down at school the other day and we think it’s total bullshit,” I said to him.

“Right, no one should have to take crap from anyone for any reason” Luke said, “And we’re here for you anytime you need help, or just someone to talk to, day or night. Okay?”

He just sat the for several seconds looking at us before his eyes began to tear up. In another few seconds, tears were running down his cheeks. Matty immediately moved closer to him and put his arm around him.

After a few minutes he wiped his eyes on his sleeve and, and asked, “How do they know?”

“They don’t know Bobby,” I replied, “They’re just picking on you because you’re smaller than them. They’re calling you a faggot because they know it’ll bother you, and they think it’ll turn other kids against you so they’ll be on their side.”

“So they don’t know?” he asked.

“No they don’t,” Luke replied.

“It’s not a big deal anyway,” I said, “It’s just small-minded assholes, who like to bully people, that have a problem with it.”

Although he hadn’t actually, outright, admitted to anything yet, he quietly asked, “You wouldn’t care?”

“No we really wouldn’t care,” I said giving him a big smile.

At that point, Matty gave us a ‘why don’t you tell him why’ look.

But, before either of us could say anything, Bobby said between sniffles, “I tried so hard to make it go away but it won’t. I don’t know what to do. I’m so scared Mom and Dad are gonna hate me and I’m gonna lose all my friends, well except for Matty and you guys. Nobody will understand.”

“Bobby,” I said quietly, “I know it seems really scary right now, but you do know someone who will understand…two someones.”

He looked at us for a few more seconds and when we both smiled at him, he suddenly clued in. “You guys?” he questioned.

“Yeah,” Luke said, “We’ve both been exactly where you are right now. Thinking we were the only one. Thinking we were all alone. Thinking we were gonna lose everyone around us. But it didn’t happen. We still have our families, we still have our friends, we’re still loved.”

“People know?” he asked.

“Everyone knows,” I said, “We’re both totally out, at home, at school, everywhere.”

“Oh wow,” he was all he could say. Then after a short pause, he looked at Matty and said, “You knew didn’t you.”

“Yeah, the morning kisses kinda gave them away,” he said laughing.

Once Bobby felt safe with us and more importantly felt he was one of us, he opened up completely. He told us exactly how he felt and he had tons of questions. The big one, of course was coming out. Matty was the only person he had felt he could trust and luckily, he was right. But…what about his other friends, and most importantly, what about his mom and dad? The consensus was that at thirteen, he did not need to be in a hurry. He would come out when and only when he was sure he was ready. As for right now, he had the three of us to confide in and knew he wasn’t alone or without support. Also, he knew Matty, Jason and Jason’s friends had his back at school, so he was pretty sure the bullying would stop.

We talked for over two hours. It wasn’t all about being gay though. Once we had Bobby’s fears more or less dealt with, we did move on to other topics. It wasn’t until Mom drove in that we realized it was 6:15 already. Bobby jumped up, said he was going to be late for dinner, thanked us and gave us all a hug, before he dashed for the door, said ‘hi’ to Mom and ran for home.

“Oops,” Luke said laughing, “Looks like my dinner is going to be in the oven keeping warm. Homework, my room…7:00 he said grinning.”

You could almost see Matty deflate when he said that. He obviously had enjoyed being one of the guys the last few nights as he chatted and did his homework with us in my room.

Luke picked up on it immediately and glanced at me. I nodded and he said, “That means you too Matty.”

“Really?” Matty said, as a big grin appeared on his face, “I got tons of math to do and some science.”

“Cool, I’ll see you guys at 7:00,” Luke said as he gave me a quick kiss and after also saying ‘hi’ to Mom, he was off.

Matty and I made our way into the kitchen, each gave Mom a hug, and we all sat down to a meal courtesy of KFC. We talked about our day, and what wonderfully exciting things we had done at school or Mom had done in the office…not. Matty told her that Bobby had come over to visit and cause he got to talking to Luke and me, he had forgotten the time and was probably late for dinner.

As Mom and I were cleaning up and Matty had run to the bathroom, Mom asked, “Bobby told you didn’t he?”

“You knew?” I asked.

“I didn’t actually know, but I had a pretty good idea,” she said, “You can’t spend seventeen years with a gay son and not be able to pick up on it in someone you see as often as Bobby.”

“Yeah, I guess not,” I said.

“He’s a very lucky boy to have you and Luke to confide in,” she said.

“And Matty,” I said.

“And Matty,” she responded, “But you’ve been where he is. You understand. Matty can have compassion but he can’t completely understand.”

“Maybe,” I replied, “But Matty stood up to the bullies with him and brought him to us, so I think he has an idea of what Bobby’s going through.”

“He’s a lot like his big brother that way,” she said as she patted my arm. I immediately leaned down, patted my face, and was rewarded with a kiss on the cheek.

“Where’s mine?” Matty asked as he came back into the kitchen and Mom laughed and gave him his kiss on the cheek.

“We better get our books and head over to Luke’s if we going to get our homework done tonight,” I said.

“Oh yeah,” he exclaimed, “It’s nearly 7:00.”

Mom just looked at me and smiled as Matty disappeared down the hall. I smiled back and ran to get my books as well, and the two of us were off to Luke’s.

“Yoda!” was the first thing I heard as Matty and I walked into the kitchen. Matty just looked at me and grinned. I’m sure the memory of me in my Yoda costume was suddenly fresh in his mind.

“Hi Mikey,” I responded, “This is my brother Matty.”

“Hi Matty,” Mikey said, “Do you got to do home work too cause your teacher doesn’t teach you enough?”

“Hi Mikey,” Matty replied, “Yes, I have homework too.”

“That really sucks the big one,” Mikey responded.

“Mikey!” Fran’s voice rang out from down the hall, “God where do you learn that stuff?”

“Hi Fran,” I said laughing.

“Hi Zander…hi Matty,” she said, “Luke’s in his room.”

“Hi,” Matty said as he gave her a little wave.

“Holy shi…I mean…wow!” Matty said as we walked into Luke’s room, “I thought your room was totally Star Wars. It’s nothing compared to this.”

“You like it?” Luke asked.

“Oh yeah,” Matty replied, “It’s wild.”

After Luke showed Matty around for a few minutes, we were all stretched out across Luke’s bed working on our homework. About an hour later, Fran came in with three cans of Sprite and a box of cookies. We thanked her, sat up and decided to take a break. We chatted about all sorts of things including Bobby. As we were finishing up our drinks and were getting ready to attack the last bit of our homework, Matty announced that he wanted to be called Matt. He was going to be thirteen in a month and Matty was too much of a kids name. Of course we agreed with him and promised it would be Matt from now on. I did warn him that I might slip up once in a while as I had been calling him Matty since he was little. He figured he could live with that.

By 9:00 we all had our homework done and Matt decided he should head home as Mom would be calling Fran and asking her to send him home soon anyway. We walked him to the door. He said good night to Fran on the way past the living room and she wished him a good night too, as did Luke and I. Like the first night he worked with us, he thanked us, said good night guys and he was off. Our weeknights soon became routine. A slow leisurely walk home, relaxing till dinner, homework till 9:00 or 9:30 if we were lucky, then time to cuddle, talk, and dream, until 10:30 or 11:00. Matt became a regular for our homework sessions as did Bobby after a while. You could actually see their confidence grow the more we spent time together, working, talking, joking, and laughing. They even got used to a very rambunctious, often airborne, little six year old.

Weekends were spent at the mall, at Murphy’s, or going to movies, often just the two of us, but also often with Matt and Bobby, or with the guys from school. A favourite pastime was going for long walks along the river, just the two of us. We often hung out at Charlie’s or Greg’s, playing card games, or listening to music and simply chatting. Along with Matt, Bobby and the guys, we joined our local youth group and attended different socials with them. Things like skating parties, snowboarding at Nakiska once, a couple of dances, and a couple of fundraisers for the Doorway, which is a group that works with street kids to help them get off the street. Matty, oops, I mean Matt even found himself a very cute dance partner, Lisa. Bobby was involved in most things, but he avoided the dances. As he said, he wasn’t ready to come out and hadn’t found the right cute guy to dance with yet anyway. He also wasn’t about to come to a dance and stand around by himself feeling like an idiot or worse, have some girl make a move on him.

Luke and I were seldom apart except at night. Neither his mom nor mine felt comfortable with us having sleepovers. Go figure. We spend a fair bit of time in Luke’s room or mine stretched out across the bed. We would usually cuddle up, sometimes talking quietly, sometimes squeezing in the odd kiss, and sometimes just thinking. It was one quiet evening as we were cuddled up quietly thinking and enjoying the closeness that I thought back to Halloween. The Force had indeed been with me that night. Luke was more than a dream come true. As I was thinking, I pictured him as he interacted with me, with Matt, Mikey, and Bobby and realized I was in the arms of one of the most kind, caring, thoughtful, compassionate, guys on the planet. I thought about how lucky I was to have been Yoda for an evening. What at the time, had seemed like a horribly embarrassing experience had, in fact, won me the heart of Luke Skywalker, a.k.a Luke Richardson.

That evening after we got in one last kiss before we got up and I had to head home, Luke walked me to the door, his arm around my waist and mine around his. Fran was nowhere to be seen, so we managed one more good night kiss before I had to leave the comfort of his arms. As I stood there, holding his hands and looking into his eyes, I realized I just how deeply in love with him I was. I couldn’t help but grin as I squeezed his hands and said, “I love you Luke.” Before he would let go of my hands he grinned and responded, “Not half as much as I love you.” I managed to stop grinning long enough to give him one more kiss, turned, and started for home. I was still grinning when I got to my room and as I flopped down on my bed and looked up at his poster, I exclaimed, “I love you Luke Skywalker…yes I do.”

The picture of Luke is from an article at http://members.shaw.ca/david.p.z.888/star_wars/luke_skywalker.html which is copied from an article on starwars.wikicities.com and is distributed under the terms of the GNU Free