Chapter 7: Mystery
For some reason, Tyson was singing as
they walked along. It was just a tune he was making up out of the blue.
"It's sun-ny and it's Sa-tur-day! The sun shines like it did
yes-ter-day! So what do me and ma pals do? We go rent a mo-vie to watch
Lewis laughed the entire time. "How d'you survive walkin' in the city actin' like that?"
"Ya weird if you sing on the street so one thing I like about this
place is almost no humiliation." Tyson grinned. He started singing
again. "So what do we rent for an a-fter-noon? Alien or may-be Spa-der-man
As they neared Edward's house he seemed to tire of singing. "Glad ta know I cheered you up, Lou."
"Huh? I'm not sad."
"Not sad, just bothered."
"Yeah, argument with Leslie."
"You two'll get over it. Where's the bike?"
The motorbike had definitely disappeared.
"Did it need a repair maybe?" suggested Lewis.
"I guess that could explain it."
The doorbell rang. It opened after some time to reveal a puzzled Roy. "Hello?"
"We're gonna be ren'in' a movie for the afternoon. We thought we'd ask Ed what 'e wan'ed ta see."
The Principal looked rather apologetic. "Didn't he tell you?" He
received blank looks. "Last night he got a call, his brother got
injured in an accident so he left straight away. Sorry you had to come
here to find out."
"It's fine, really," assured Lewis. "We know family's important to 'im."
"Yeah, I just hope Al gets better," added Tyson.
Roy seemed relieved somewhat by their understanding, he still didn't
smile. "I'm just glad you understand. You take care now alright?"
"You too," replied the visitors with slightly different timing. They
left the closing door behind them as they descended the Elric-Mustang
"We can still watch it on your TV," pointed out Lewis.
"Yeah...it's big enough. We can have ice cream! And we need salt popcorn."
"Mmhm," affirmed Tyson with a nod.
"Whose car we takin'?"
"I'll drive. You drove me around enough already."
"It's not like there are too few jobs, just too many inconvenient ones. Or ones I'm not good at," explained Lewis.
"Like nature pictures?" offered Tyson. They were walking in the main shopping district.
"I can do landscapes but not close-ups or mood reflections or stuff
like that. The jobs that are inconvenient are the ones that involve me
goin' t'another place miles from home and stayin' there a couple o'
nights while doin' a project."
"Why can't you?" ... "What's wrong?"
"I don't like bein' alone more than a couple o' hours. I
get...nervous." Tyson gave him a questioning look. "It reminds me when
I was a teenager. I didn't tell no one I was gay. I trusted no one and
I wondered if my school secretly knew."
The friendly shorty laid a hand on Lewis' shoulder reassuringly. He then looked out in front of him and...laughed.
"What's so funny?"
"That window in the toy store." Tyson pointed.
In the display window were 2 transformers. (I would name the toys but I
don't know which toy ranges currently exist so I won't bother. If I did
name them I would say G1 forms of Cliffjumper and Sunstreaker; that's
right lambo fangirls, you've all been shamed!) One was bending over and
the toy's rear was touching the groin of the transformer standing
behind it. Lewis couldn't help but laugh. They continued their journey
to the DVD rental store.
A couple of days later Lewis and Tyson stepped out of a car they
borrowed (from one of their husbands, I don't care which). They were in
the supermarket car park.
"I still think it's weird that Roy was at Church," Tyson protested. "Just happens to go when Ed's not around."
"That weren't the first weekend Ed 'ad gone," Lewis pointed out. "Is that 'im there?"
Up ahead, loading an open car boot, they saw the back of a man with
strawberry blonde hair kept in a pony tail, tied in the middle of his
head rather than near the neck like his plait used to be. He was talking to
Dean. They rushed over.
"Ed!" Tyson shouted.
Edward turned around and beamed a Barbie smile. "Hello. How are you?"
There was no sign of any leather on him, nor his brimming confidence. He was wearing a loose red
T-shirt with white jogging bottoms and completely white freshly bought
The pair were aghast.
"Wha..." Lewis couldn't word his thoughts.
"What happened? Why d'you change?" demanded Tyson.
Edward, still smiling, shrugged. "It's a change for the better."
Dean looked rather proud for some reason. "Don't 'e look great? Best of
all, with that motorbike gone, we don't 'ave ta worry about any more
terrifyin' sounds and Edward 'ere won't be rushin' off someplace all
Tyson grabbed Ed's shoulders aggressively. "What happened?" he growled.
"What made you change? Who forced you? Where's your leather? Didn't you
"That's enough!" Dean was looking rather aggressive himself. "Hands off
'im! 'fore I call Lucien! He's with our youngest and I don't want 'im
to see this ugly sight!"
Edward was trembling and distraught. "You're scaring me," he whimpered in a small voice.
Lewis laid a hand on Tyson's shoulder. "Come on, we came ta get some things, not cause trouble. Let 'im go."
Mustang's partner was still trembling slightly when Tyson let go. Dean
quickly soothed him and gave assurances but Edward just put the
remaining shopping bags into the boot as quickly as possible. He was
still depressed and wanted to escape. Tyson glared fiercely at the
perfect housewives behind him as he got pulled away by Lewis.
"I just still don't get!" he snarled. He spotted 2 teenage girls giving
him and his friend suspicious looks. They were both wearing T-shirts of
some High School club and each had their name on the front somewhere.
The black girl, whose truly black hair was braided, was called Keisha
and the white girl with shoulder-length brown hair was called Hilary.
"Why you starin' at us like that?" demanded Tyson. "Thought there were
no homophobes in this town!"
"There ain't," snarled Hilary. She and Keisha each had a bag of her own.
"We're just wonderin' when you turn weird," told Keisha.
Lewis approached them. "You say it like it'll definitely happen."
"Always has so far," said the darker girl. "First it happened with the
couples who live here, now when a new gay or lesbian couple move in one
just turns...housewifey. It's creepy."
"Can you remember when it started?" the photographer asked.
Hilary considered this. "Not too sure. It was either before or after
the first kid came, Jack's girl I mean. The lesbians' kids came earlier
since one of 'em always went around proud 'n' pregnant."
"So what was this town like before the kid came?" asked Tyson.
The paler girl gave him a disbelieving look. "How should I know? I was young and can't remember too well."
"There did used to be that Minor Association," helped Keisha.
"As in, the Proud Men's Minor Association?" checked Lewis.
The girls nodded. "Nice talkin' to ya but we gotta get goin'," Keisha promptly said and they left.
Lewis and Tyson stared at each other in disbelief. "There's clearly somethin' goin' on here," Tyson stated firmly and slowly.
"Yeah. Feel like tryin'a find out what it is?"
"Course!" He put his arm around his taller friend's shoulders, possibly
squeezing them a bit too tight. "We can be a two-man detective team.
Like...Cagney and Lacey."
Lewis gave him the most disbelieving of looks. "They're female."
©Ruth Amy Louise Hüneke 2008