The most beautiful boy in the world lived in a castle in the sky with a mirror by his side. All alone, he wished on the full moon for a man who would make him happy. The moon heard his supplication and, taking pity on the boy, promised his wish would be granted. However, he would have to make a sacrifice in exchange. The moon wanted the boy’s long, curly hair, which he had not cut since he was a child. Wanting love more than anything else in life, he cut the long, black hair that covered his eyes, and let the moonlit wind take it away. The moon then told him his wish would be granted before the next full moon, and the now bald boy shed a tear of gratitude. But after a month of persistent solitude, the full moon returned, and love had still not reached his castle in the sky.
He complained, “Why did you not keep your promise? Now I am alone and have no hair. I only grow sadder everyday.”
“But growth, even when sad, makes you a man,” the moon replied.
“I didn’t ask you for growth, I asked you for a man to make me happy!” he yelled back.
“And you’ve always had this, creature of flesh. Just turn around and see,” the celestial lady commanded.
The boy turned around as she had asked, but only his mirror was there. In it, he saw a sad bald man and nothing more.
“It’s only me, but I don’t recognize myself,” was all he could muster sadly.
“And until you recognize that man,” The moon cursed him, “your wish will never come true.”
After this, she left him alone in his castle in the sky with the only man who could ever make him happy.
I woke up from my dream and I could say was, “That’s some bullshit!”
Back in the real world, I started my day in the same mundane way I always do. Oatmeal breakfast. Jump rope cardio. Weight training. Protein charged, post-exercise meal. Making love to my hand. Shower. Assembling an outfit with the three clean garments I have left. Somehow still managing to match. And off to school I went.
Things were going as smoothly predictable as ever, until I got a text message from Terence: the guy who never calls.
Terence is a ridiculously attractive Black man I once had the pleasure of bedding. It was one of those rare encounters that was much too good to be only about sex. The connection was seamless and organic (and trust me, as a gay man, I know those are two words I rarely hear to describe gay sex). He was also the only man ever to read my mind like a book.
After the deed was done and we were cuddling together, he looked deeply into my eyes and said, “You know, you’re kinda like a home.”
I was confused, “A home? Like… big and spacious?”
Terence just chuckled, “No. What I meant to say was, well, that you have a special kind of vibe. A hurricane could destroy the whole city, but being next to you, I’m sure anyone would feel just at home anyway.”
I hesitated for a second and then blushed. It was the greatest compliment I had ever received. And he didn’t stop there.
“You’re the type who always thinks about everyone else before you think of yourself, huh? And that’s real great, but people take advantage of that. I can tell by the look on those sad eyes of yours.”
He had me mesmerized. I couldn’t say anything back. Terence analyzed me the way I analyze characters in literature: without their permission and better than they can understand themselves. So, like any normal boy who’s been swept off his feet by a tall, dark, and handsome man, I started making out with him again. ‘Cause, really, what would you do if someone said that to you?
Naturally, this was way too good to be true. I didn’t hear from the bastard for a week, and then he would only text sporadically for the next few months. I immediately put him in the category of men who are lost causes. And then, out of the blue, a text?
“I need to talk to you,” it read.
A lot of thoughts went through my head. Did he want to start dating seriously? Did he realize I’m the one? Is he gonna propose? I chuckled at my silly fantasies and texted the guy I barely knew back.
“Come over at six!”
The bastard didn’t make it until eight. But when he got there, Terence was even cuter than I remembered. He gave me that kind of smile that would allow him get away with murder. But I feigned disinterest.
“So what did you need to talk to me about?” I asked with a serious face.
His answer to my question was a kiss, and it became that kind of conversation – mostly in French, if you know what I mean. Being in bed with him was intoxicating. It was the kind of physical connection that makes you wish you lived back in the Stone Age when there were no words or society to prevent you from leading a naked, lust-governed existence.
In the middle of passion, he looked me straight in the eyes. It was the same look he had on his face when he called me a home, but this time completely on fire. He gave me the longest kiss of my life, and after it he asked, “Do you want to be with me?”
Before I tell you what I answered let’s review the facts. He could read my mind like an open book. He was the best-looking guy who ever took any interest in me. We had the best physical connection I’d ever experienced. And he gave me the best compliment of my life. Hmm… a difficult choice, isn’t it?
“Yeah,” I said with a big smile half a millisecond after he asked.
That full-moon night we held each other until dawn, but somehow I couldn’t help but wonder how the boy in the floating castle looked right now. After I got the man he had asked for so desperately, I didn’t want to fall asleep and look into his mirror. Despite how magical the man in my arms was, the only boy I could think of was myself.
To be continued.