Gentry has OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) among other issues (which I won't go into yet ^^!) This chapter is done in a different style to get into his mind.
There was no way Zach could understand.
Gentry hated the whole culture of ‘coming out.’ He hated the rainbow parades. He hated the gay best friend, the gay best man and he even hated that damn Harvey Milk for getting his damn ass shot.
Being gay was nothing to be proud of. It was nature.
No one celebrated being straight, what made being gay different? That straight people hated you and wanted to send you to therapy?
It was infuriating.
Gentry had lost his Southern accent along with his Alabama home, but it still rang through his mind like an angry church bells. He hadn’t been able to control that or any of his thoughts since that night. But he could control his body. That was his.
Each note in his voice, each strand of faded red hair, each freckle on his face… was his. His love was his own, and no one had the right to question it.
His body was his.
And if anyone tried to violate it again, he would beat them senseless.
How could Zach understand this?
Being gay was nothing to be proud of. It was a source of misery in his life, but it was his misery. His fault, and nothing to be proud of.
Gentry’s mouth was his, and he used it to keep his thoughts unspoken. They were horrible, but they stormed at him like a raging bull, taunting him in every conscious and subconscious moment. Rape, murder, death. Hanging himself, hanging a baby. Stomping someone to death, kicking them until they coughed blood. Yelling so loudly that people stopped to stare, yelling so loudly they would have to take him away.
Quiet. Now he was quiet. That was his.
These thoughts worried him. They made him avoid the tile by the trashcan and scrub his hands until the skin peeled. But these thoughts were his, too. There was no way Zach could know them, and there was no way Gentry would let him know them. But he knew if he chose to, Zach would understand. Zach accepted him, and didn’t expect anything in return.
Maybe, just maybe, Zach even loved him.
The thought of it filled Gentry with a quiet contentment, and for a moment the bull was quiet and the storm was still.