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Mom Discovers His Secret

It was a typical Saturday morning, like any other. But Claire’s life was about to change, and nothing could prepare her for this shocking discovery. The morning began with her methodical cleaning and tidying of the home. Her husband started working weekends years ago and this day was no different. Dutifully, she handed Oliver his coffee as he gave her a quick peck on the cheek and walked out the door. After Quinn was born, they grew apart as the marriage gradually disconnected. Since his birth, the marriage had never been the same. Quinn had already left for art class as he always did on Saturday mornings, before Claire and Oliver awoke. It was good for him; one less morning to face the monotony of his parents’ existence. As Claire vacuumed Quinn’s room, she gathered a few bits of clothing for laundry and noticed that he had forgotten to arrange his bed. Loving mother that she was, Claire straightened the linens just as a book fell to the floor from beneath a pillow. The leather binding was worn and soft to the touch as though it had endured a thousand hands. Halfway into the book a mechanical pencil divided the pages. Claire knew better than to violate her son’s privacy. But for some reason, her heart sank as she flooded with dread. Giving in to curiosity, Claire opened the sacred book to the divided pages.
CLAIRE 1 – “How can I do this? She asked herself, remorsefully. But she did it anyway. And this is what she read: DEAR DIARY – Dear Diary, I don’t know why Father must be so strict. He is always breathing down my neck. Ever since I was a young boy, he made me go to church twice a week. I’m much happier being with Pierre and drawing designs for our future business. We talk about life in London together, when we finally move there. I get so excited when I’m around him, especially when we spend long hours together drawing and working on our sketches together. When our lips touch, I get overwhelmed with desire. The other day we had a chance to be alone for the entire afternoon and our time together was amazing. I used to think I might like girls, but now I’m sure that I have no interest. I think Mother wonders why I’ve never had a girlfriend. I’m afraid that if I tell her the truth, she’ll be devastated. I think Father would disown me.
[PAUSE] Claire dropped to the bed as her initial dread, now confirmed, swelled in her throat. At first, she cried tears of relief, as the book’s insights validated more than a decade of disconcerting questions that lived in the corners of her mind about Quinn eccentricities. CLAIRE 2 – “My dear son.” Claire cried, sorting through the torrent of emotions that gushed into her mind. [DIARY CONTINUES] Sometimes I catch him looking at me with disgust as though he sees something repulsive in his son. But he will never, ever confront me about it. He’s suspicious that I’m hiding something. Or maybe he already knows. I think he resents my secret. And I think he is angry with me. [PAUSE] Claire’s tears turned to sobs as her son’s life flashed before her with the dreaded notion that Quinn could face a future without the support of his father. Oliver was not the kind of person to accept the alternative choices of his son. And one word came to mind: rejection. Claire reluctantly opened the diary again, despite her guilt in doing so, and continued to read.
[DIARY CONTINUES] The whole situation makes me entirely uncomfortable, and the silence in the family is bloody awkward. It’s gotten to the point that I dread being around Mother and Father. But the truth is that I’m in love with Pierre. He makes me feel so special. He and Julia are my only friends and I love them both because they accept the real me. But school is lonely, and the others look at me like I’m a freak. But it’s okay. I prefer to be alone with my studies and my art. Perhaps I should tell Mother and Father my secret. Maybe it isn’t such a secret after all. [CLAIRE CLOSES THE BOOK] The entries continued but Claire had all she could take. So, she returned the book to its original location, careful to leave it exactly as she found it. And she wondered what to do. CLAIRE 3 – “Should I confront my son and ask him what this all means?” CLAIRE 4 – “Or should I pretend it never happened, since I have violated his privacy.” Feeling nauseous, she went to the kitchen to fetch a cup of tea. As she sipped the warm, comforting fluid, she asked herself, CLAIRE 5 – “Maybe being heterosexual is not the only way. But what sort of lifestyle would it mean for my son if he is not heterosexual? CLAIRE 6 – “Will his happiness be compromised?” CLAIRE 7 – “How can I face my friends and family as the mother of a young man who is not straight?” Riddled with questions, Claire was emotionally paralyzed, incapable of drawing any conclusions. Suddenly, the front door opened, jolting her into reality, as Quinn entered. “Hello, Mother. How was your day?” CLAIRE 8 – “Hello Quinn. It was fine.” [PAUSE] Surprised by his mother’s rigid response, Quinn suspected something. She was always warm and loving with him, except if she was angry or upset. “Yes, Mother?” CLAIRE 10 – “Why didn’t you tell me?”

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