In unison, the elderly couple looked directly at me in horror. Their faces were engulfed in ambivalence, but that’s ok, they disappeared anyway.

            “Would you hurry it up?” she sighed. “Get to the point already!” the suited woman exclaimed.

            “Oh, yeah, sorry. I was just thinking where to start next. Anyway, I got bored about an hour into the search, that’s when I asked some lady to tell me who it was we were exactly looking for.”

            “And what did she say?”

            As I recovered from what I had just done, my only instinct was to run, but I wasn’t fast enough. The echoing sounds from the distance eventually caught me.

            “Oh, sorry, she said, "the boy we’re searching for was a twenty-one-year-old that goes by Steve Gomez. His parents hold this annual search party on the anniversary of his disappearance.”

            Nothing was going to be different anyway. My whole life was like living in a locked up cage.
Except this time I’ll have company. Honestly, that fills my heart with some happiness.

The women leaned in closer and asked, “What did you do then?”

“I panicked. Not because I forgot about his existence, but because it’s when I saw my parents. It took awhile before I approached them, but when I did, they didn’t recognize me in the slightest.” 

            “Your parents not recognizing you,” the shrink paused.  ”How did you react to this?”

            “Well I decided to hold off on telling them about my transition and continued with the search, even though I was the person they were searching for. That’s when it started to fall apart.”

            Demandingly, she replied, “Elaborate on that.”

            After the long process, I was finally in my cellar. Couldn’t believe I was going to see a therapist.

            “As our conversation grew personal, the more and more I hated them. They told me their son felt 'different' from everyone else and how the way they raised him took away their beloved son.” 

            “This is what caused you to lash out?” she quickly alleged.

            “No. It was when I stopped and told them ‘Mom, Dad, my name’s not Steve. It’s Jane.’ You should have seen them yourself. Disgust. It’s what consumed their faces. It drowned the disappointment in their eyes.”

            Soon, I walked to the booth, tied by shackles, and picked up the phone; the interrogation began.


© Jesus De La Cruz