Your name is Dirk Strider and you're an asshole. You don't necessarily have a problem with this fact; plenty of evidence to support it from numerous sources simply makes you shrug and smirk. Why let everyone else have all the fun when you can't have any? This is your mindset and has been for as long as you can remember. You remember other things too that you really wished you hadn't.

You remember cargo shorts hugging your best bro's ass tighter than you bite your lip at night when silent sobs wrack your tired body. Tumbling around in the dirt pretending you're both on an adventure, even though you're a little too old to play games like this, and 'accidentally' pressing your bodies together for far too long is another thing you remember-especially the heat, that beautiful warm feeling bubbling inside you.

You remember telling him how you feel.

Memories burn you.

Rejection tears up your insides and you're never the same again.

It's no surprise that the child prodigy sitting at the breakfast table is possibly gay too. He's seven years old and won't stop talking about the new friend he made at the park-to his Barbie dolls. There was never really a problem with him picking them out at the toy store, none ever presented themselves, but when he came from school with a shiner and the word 'FAG' written on his forehead in Sharpie, you decided to change everything for the better. Nothing goes as planned at first because he's as stubborn as you are and is still too young to understand the concept of what homosexuality is; he believes it's just another insult like stupid or butthead, but you're going to change everything for the better.

He's your little brother and he won't suffer the same you did.

When Dave reaches the age of thirteen he tells you, in his newly acquired calm demeanor, that he possibly thinks of Egderp as more than a bro. You can see in his eyes, even though they're covered by those totally unironic shades, that he's looking for your acceptance. Your fists bump after a curt nod of your head and the two coolest people in the universe understand each other without words.

Dave is fifteen now and you've trained him the best you could, but he could use improvement. Dave's friend is over again; all awkward limbs with a bucktoothed smile that makes Dave drop his poker face and that weakness alone is what pisses you off the most. Your brother mutters something he wants John to do with him that isn't innocent at all, they think you've left the room but you're always watching, while he's sharing sicknasty beats with the other male and you think 'This is it.' Everything you ever taught him has been wasted. Everything was wasted over a prankster with a bad overbite and terribly optimistic demeanor.

Keys clacked away, as you've returned to the computer that's almost always running and glowing-it surprising how long the modem lasts because that damn fan and keeps it from overheating. The words mingle together and it isn't because orange irises were staring at them for too long, but because there are tears welling up behind triangular shades that refuse to fall. What was it that was supposed to be typed up again? Another shitty puppet porn?

You forget what you were doing and Lil' Cal's inviting smile beckons. You flashstep over to him, looming over the puppet with what appears to be dangerous intent, but all that really happens is a shameless hug. This little dude is so fucking awesome and you tell him that while your fingers grip his squishy torso too tightly.
The voice that speaks to you is terribly high-pitched and sickly sweet, "I love you, Bro."
Being the badass ninja that you are, you find no need to check around to make sure nobody is hidden and watching. Dave's good, but not good enough to move around without tracking, especially with John in tow.

Pink lips mumble, "I love you, too, Cal."