Well Santa, I went off to boarding school.
Which was pretty horrible.
Being only twelve I was one of the younger boys and with my uselessness at sports and such I didn’t make friends easily. Plus I wasn’t the boarding school type, I guess, so my teachers were generally pretty disappointed in me too.
I felt lonely and dumb.
The one bright spot was art class, where I could draw.
One day after class the art teacher looked at my drawings of Bradbury the axolotl and said he saw promise in me.
I was so happy!
Then he touched me between my legs.
He told me how handsome I was and how he could see that I was a sensitive, loving kind of boy.
That we could be special friends.
No one had ever spoken to me that way before, Santa.
So I let him kiss me and put my penis in his mouth and I have to say that it felt good.
Although I felt guilty about it later.
He used to make me stay after class so we could be alone. We did many things together which pleased him and I loved him with all my heart.
He told me I was his special boy, but we have to keep it secret.
Of course it ended badly.
Another boy he was doing things with told his parents and it all came out.
I had to leave school.
“Ugh! How could you?!” said my stepmother when I arrived home. “Doing it with a man. Little pervert!”
“I didn’t know it was wrong,” I said. “Really he was a nice person.”
“Little sissy,” said my dad and this time I knew he meant it.
We didn’t speak much after that.
But Boris, my stepmom’s brother who took over my room, he looked at me funny and that night he came to me where I was sleeping on the couch and said he wanted me to do the same things with him that I did with the teacher.
I said please no it got me into trouble but he just put all his weight on my chest pinning me down and told me to start doing it.
Then he called me some nasty names while I did what he wanted.
I was so scared my dad would catch us I used all my skill so that Boris would finish quickly.
He moaned and quivered and clutched me tightly.
I kept going till he was done.
Then he pushed me away and told me never to tell or I’d be sorry.
I was sorry already.
Boris visited me every night and even caught me in the bathroom a few times.
I remember the rug on the bathroom floor and Boris looking at himself in the mirror. He wasn’t like the art teacher, who was kind and said nice things. Boris was rough and called me names.
Like he hated me for what I let him do to me.
At least he stopped beating me up.
Luckily, I was soon sent to live with my aunt in Texas.
My father couldn’t stand the sight of me anymore, said my stepmother.
“So long, kid,” she added. “Good luck.”
She handed me $30 and put me on the bus to Amarillo, Texas.
My father didn’t even see me off.
My aunt picked me up at the station in Amarillo.
Her name, believe it or not, was Sissy.
Which made me laugh!
She laughed too. She had kind eyes like I remember my mother had so I gathered my courage and told her my story and how I came to be on her doorstep.
“I know,” she said softly. “Your daddy told me.”
“He thinks I’m a sissy,” I said.
“What do you think you are?” asked my aunt.
So we talked about it and I told her everything that I’d kept locked in my heart until then.
“It’s okay,” she said when I finished and it was the best thing she could have said.
Christmas that first year with aunt Sissy was fun. She had a daughter older than me away at university who came home for the holidays and with aunt Sissy’s husband Roger we all decorated the tree and had a grand time!
It was the best Christmas I ever remember!
You brought me books that year, Santa, including one that became a favorite, James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl.
I suppose I identified a bit with James.
But then, don’t we all?
After awhile living with my aunt and her family I sort of forgot about Boris and the art teacher and the things I’d done with them.
I became a boy again.
Aunt Sissy encouraged me in my drawing. She took me to the rodeo where for the first time ever I drew a live horse! She looked at my drawing and said my mother would have been proud of me.
Boy! That was a great day!
Over the years aunt Sissy and uncle Roger became like my mother and father.
They loved me and treated me with kindness.
And I was a good son to them, making them proud mostly.
I left Texas when I was nineteen, and went to New York where I hoped to become an artist.
“Don’t go, Rusty,” said aunt Sissy. “Stay with us and go to school here. You can go to New York later if you still want to.”
But I had wandering feet.
“I have to try,” I answered. “The bright lights of the big city beckon. I love you and uncle Roger and I’ll be forever thankful, but something calls me and I have to go.”
To be continued…