Chapter 1: One Word Can Change Your World

Lace's face had never been so pale. He had never been so humiliated in his entire life — or at least, that's what it felt like at the time. His limbs were cold and there was a tingling sensation at the base of his neck, making him want to shudder violently. The crowd that was gathered around him and his locker was suffocating him; choking him. He felt claustrophobic.

He took one, slow step away from his locker and the horrible message displaced across it. The students continued to laugh, some yelling insults while others just looked at him sympathetically. Most laughed or giggled to their friends.

It was truly amazing how one word could change everything. One, simple word.

Insulting; disgusting. Such a dirty word to describe someone. Lace didn't like the word at all, he was sensitive to it. Part of him relentlessly denied the fact that, yes, maybe it was true, while the other bit at the back of his mind, whispering over and over, "It could be true, it could be true."

Realization had been a violent slap to the face. Lace's "friends" had actually been the ones to write this message, and not only was Lace hurt, but he was embarrassed and scared. His reputation had just changed for the worse in one second. As soon as he had walked up to his locker and seen the word that was displayed across it, he knew it was over.

He didn't know what to do. He was confused.

Yes, he noticed the signs that maybe he was changing; that maybe he was different. He certainly wasn't what people defined as "normal". This realization had never been all-too-consuming, although he had been having many hints thrown at him.

Holding back a frustrated, hurt, and confused scream, Lace turned around and pushed his way through the growing crowd. Those sick parasites who were feeding off of his pain and embarrassment. The sadistic psychotic student body who understood so little. He tore through them, breaking away from the circle of attention. Once free, he darted down the hall and turned the first corner he could find.

Of course, there was more cruelty awaiting Lace around the corner — or that's what he believed, anyways.

He didn't see who it was who he crashed into until he was on top of him. There lay his best friend, Colby, confused and in obvious pain, on his back, while Lace was on top of him. Automatically, unwanted thoughts invaded his mind and he desperately fought to keep them away.

Panicking, Lace jerked away from Colby and forced himself to get on his feet, trying his hardest to fight down a growing blush that tried to stain his cheeks. Some thoughts continued to leak into his mind, making him feel guilty and dirty. He couldn't help but stare at Colby and his perfect pale blue eyes, so full of life and ignorance; his silky blond hair that fell before his eyes, his friendly, boyish smile...

Shit. No.

"Whoa, where's the fire?" Colby uttered out, a little put off. He winced a little as he raised himself slightly into a sitting position. He held out his hand to Lace and cocked his head. "The least you can do is help me up, you damned bull."

Lace stepped away from Colby's hand, feeling torn. He felt as if he touched Colby's hand, Colby would forever be stained with disgrace. Colby didn't deserve that. Besides, once Colby learned about Lace's new reputation... he would be disgusted that he had even touched him.

"What's wrong? Am I suddenly contaminated?" Colby said jokingly, yet he still furrowed his eyebrows in concern nonetheless. He pushed himself into a standing position without Lace's help and regarded him with confused eyes. "Are you alright, man? You're pale as hell, and you look ... I don't know. Scared?"

"I gotta go," Lace murmured, ducking his head to hide his red face. He took off running once more, not noticing the hand that shot out in attempt to stop him. Colby frowned, watching his best friend disappear out the double doors and into the school yard. Slowly, he dropped his hand and just stared down the hall. He was confused. Lace had never acted so strange before. He had never bolted out of the school before, on the verge of panicking, either.

After a few minutes of simply thinking, Colby turned around and rounded the corner of the hall only to see a huge crowd gathered by a set of lockers. A set of lockers that Lace's locker also was a part of.

Tilting his head in confusion while ignoring the strand of blond hair that fell before his pale blue eyes, Colby approached the group. A few people looked at him, snickered, then turned away, but Colby paid them no mind. Instead, he shoved his way through the crowd, curiosity tugging at him childishly, until he came to the front. The scene. The locker.

Most importantly, the word on the locker.

Right on the center of Lace's locker, was one word that made Colby step back in shock.

"Fag".


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A/N: Myeh... yeah, I know it's a little sketchy right now. This is just a short chapter, to get the story started. Future chapters will be longer. Yes, in case you haven't guessed from the summary, this story is yaoi. Slash. Boy on boy. m/m. All that yummy stuff. If you don't like it, don't read. It's as simple as that.


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