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We were six years old when I fell in love with Gage Beaumont.
We were 17 when he realized he felt the same.
His dad was the town troublemaker, and I was the son of a cop. We couldn’t have been more different, yet we were best friends, had each other’s backs, and kept each other’s secrets. “What you are, I am,” we always said.
Then one night irrevocably changed our lives forever.
It’s 10 years before I see Gage again, and instantly I can tell he’s not the same boy I fell in love with. We’re both haunted and hardened by the memory of that night – of everything we did and saw.
Yet as much as we’ve changed, the connection between us lingers. Our history is so devastatingly complicated that it’s difficult to allow ourselves happiness. With every touch, every laugh, every moment we take back, the more signs I see of the old Gage resurfacing. Little by little, I’m becoming the Joey he remembers, too.
But it’s never that easy. If we truly want to heal, we have to find strength not only in each other, but in ourselves. Life is filled with beautiful and terrible things, and this time, we’ll do whatever it takes to hold on to the good, and to each other.
Warning: While this is a story about friendship, found family, and two men epically in love, it also deals with difficult themes: childhood physical and verbal abuse, some violence, depression, and anxiety.