Jack knelt, rubbing his still stinging cheek and, with the back of his free hand, rubbing the dripping cum from his chin. As he went to turn the water off, a figure emerged from one of the curtained changing stations on the far side of the room; a figure of Venus stained with tears. It was Rose, naked and unashamedly sobbing, her shoulders convulsing as she tried to hold herself together. Jack looked at her as one would look at the Medusa, unable to turn away and turning to stone when all they wanted to do was look away and run. He finally had the courage to rise. No words were spoken, none were needed. The silence filled the room as thick and heavy as the steam that poured from the heated water in the basin on the wall.
Jack, finally breaking his gaze, managed to turn off the spicket, allowing the rolling steam to reach a stagnant hover. And Rose hovered. And he hovered. And nothing was said. Turning away, Rose returned to the changing stall to dress herself, still crying quietly. Jack returned to the stall he and Cal had shared earlier to dress himself, waiting until Rose left before drawing back the curtain and exiting the now less humid room. Little did he know that by midnight the room would be underwater and little did he know the short amount of time he had to figure out his heart before his time could be up. Confused, broken, and wanting the secure arms of his first and true love, Jack hurried down the corridor enroute to his cabin.
Upon reaching the door and searching for his key in his pocket, Jack began to open the door when he heard sounds. Thumping, moaning and groaning leaked into the hallway as Jack heard two people having sex on the other side of the door. He was amused, almost laughing, until he heard a particularly familiar whine emit from the room. He then recognized and Irish accent...followed by and Italian one as two men were enraptured by the throws of passion. Jack couldn't take anymore. Holding back tears and in a slight state of shock, the young man made his way back the way he came. Finding a bench, Jack sat until he saw Tommy come down the hall with a huge smile on his face, obviously satisfied with himself. Jack hid his face, successfully avoiding the encounter.
As Jack reached into his pocket, discovered a slip of paper with something round secured in the makeshift envelope. He withdrew the paper and opened it, confused and intrigued. What he found inside took his breath away. It was a ring, pure gold, with a large emerald set in the middle surrounded by white diamonds. The gold had been smithed into beautiful cherubs anchoring the gems. In a state of disbelief, Jack noticed a note had been written on the inside of the envelope. It stated:
Rose may have the diamond, but you have the emerald. It may be unknown to you, but diamonds are a dime a dozen in the natural world, man just puts a price on them because they are beautiful. Emeralds are truly rare, valuable and one of a kind. Gold is the standard of all value. In the short time I have known you, you have proven more valuable than all three combined. Please, take this ring as a reminder of my true feelings and my true devotion.
Love Always, Cal.
In disbelief, Jack fixed the ring onto his left hand; a sort of wedding ring. Unlike Rose's adornment however, Jack did not see his as a shackle. Rather, it was the completion of something. The completion of his heart. He had to get back to Cal. He knew where his future lay. Just then, a steward came down the hall and stopped at Jack's cabin door. When turned away by Fabrizio, the steward continued his way down the hall and Jack stopped him.
"Looking for me?" the boy asked.
The gentleman, dressed in a formal white suit, turned with a surprised expression and said, "Why yes!"
In his hand was a personal message sealed with a small wax circle.