Pt. 1: How It Began

Implied slash

Summary: When Steffan meets up with his mother after getting a call, he has no idea what is waiting him

Disclaimer: No character you recognize from the Masque is mine

He stared at her, incredulous of what he'd just heard her saying.

"You want me to do what?" he finally said.

His mother gave him a little smile placing her hand on his cheek.

"I know how it might sound," she said, her voice soft. "But it's really not that big of a deal. Just go in there and do whatever is asked of you."

Steffan looked away, this was not what he thought his mother had in mind when she called him and said that she needed him.

"Oh, puppy," said Josefine Kabala, turning his face back to her. "You know our situation. We're not rich, have never had any great wealth, but still we got to survive in this world. And to survive you sometimes got to make sacrifices. I know that, I've made these… sacrifices for long now." Her expression went thoughtful, a mischievous little smile coming to her lips. "Such delicious sacrifices."

Steffan watched his mother in shock. He'd known that she'd been seeing a lot of men, if she'd ever tried to hide it she didn't do much of a good job, but that she'd done… whatever she'd done to please them because they paid her… and now she wanted him to do the same.

"Puppy, we need this."

Steffan looked to his right, toward the door behind which he knew that the man would be waiting.

"It's for our future," she whispered in his ear, and Steffan could feel her hand on his back gently pushing making him take a few steps toward the door.

He inhaled deeply and slowly he began to walk toward the door. Reaching it he looked over his shoulder at his mother, she smiled at him encouraging.

Leaving his childhood behind he opened the door and entered a part of his life that would forever haunt him.

It was done. All that's been asked of him he'd done in wordless obedience. Now he was lying on the bed, feeling numb, listening to the sound of the man moving about in the room.

Steffan had his eyes closed, both because he didn't want to see the other and because he hoped that if the man thought that he was asleep he would be left alone. Feet approached and he had to do his outmost not to move away as a hand came to tenderly stroke his cheek.

"Till the next time," he heard the man's smooth voice say, and not for the first time that night did he feel tears of shame burn behind his eyelids.

Finally the feet moved away and Steffan heard the door open and close as the man left. First then did he open his eyes to stare unseeing in front of him.

Slowly, his body going from numb to aching, he rose from the bed and staggered across the room to the small bathroom, where he fell on his knees by the toilet and threw up.

He dragged himself up to look at himself in the mirror. The man (boy? No, he would never be a boy again) that stared back at him with the eyes filled with pain was pale and the hair framing the face was ruffled and the silver shine seemed to have dulled. His scalp was aching like the rest of him, at one point of the night had his male companion in the heat of the moment grabbed a handful of the hair and pulled hard, obviously not noticing Steffan's discomfort.

He didn't recognize the man that was staring back at him from the mirror.

Unable to, not trying to, stop it he sunk back onto the floor. He sat there leaning against the wall, feeling the cool surface of the floor and the wall against the skin of his naked body. He leaned his head back and closed his eyes.

That night had been the first time he had taken his cloths of for someone. That night had been when his mother had first sold him. That night had been the night when he'd lost his virginity.

His head fell forward to be caught by hands that would soon be soaked with tears.

The Steffan Kabala that had once been, the fun-loving innocent child that had been so completely untroubled, was dead.