What A Surprise

“Mikey! I’m making a snack run, wanna come.” Jordan said, standing in the teenager’s bedroom door twirling his car keys.

Micheal smiled as he snapped his book close, tossing it down on the bed beside him. Making their way downstairs, the uncle and nephew informed Maddy, Micheal’s mom and Jordan’s sister, that they would be back shortly. Hopping into Jordan’s cherry red Challenger, Micheal pushed the stop/start button and the monsterish engine was alive. 


Making their way through the streets of Micheal’s childhood neighborhood the young man stared up at the night sky. His uncle had been in town for the past two and a half weeks and Micheal had spent all of that time trying to get Jordan alone. 


Jordan was a digital nomad and a business guru. He spent the majority of his time traveling and helping companies of every size level up their marketing. For a couple months he would take over their departments and slowly make changes that took good businesses and made them incredible, six figure companies. 


Jordan didn’t do breaks; partly because he loved his job and partly because he and Maddy never had anything as children. With a drugged up mother and a ghost for a father, money wasn’t something Jordan and Maddy came across too often; So when Jordan made his first million he quickly grew addicted and kept at it, making him quite a difficult man to get a hold of.


So when Micheal found out that his favorite, and really only, uncle was coming to town, Micheal was over the moon. For weeks he’d been trying to get his uncle alone, but between Micheal’s father Bill constantly wanting to ‘talk business’ and his mother’s watchful eye, Micheal could never seem to find the opportunity.

But now that they were finally alone, Micheal found himself unable to speak. Thinking a mile a minute, all the things that he wanted to talk to his uncle about bounced around in his head like a pin ball.


“Did you spend so much time trying to get me alone that you didn’t think of what to say once you finally did?” Jordan asked, looking over at his nephew.


Micheal looked over at the older man stunned.


“How did you know?” He asked.


“Reading people is a big part of my job Mikey.” Jordan said, stopping at a red light.


Jordan looked over at his nephew and Micheal felt like he was center stage at a big award show. Jordan had a way of looking past the facade people liked to put up and looking straight into their soul; it was what made him such a great business man. 


Squirming in his seat Micheal felt a thin layer of sweat forming on his palms. How was he even going to start this conversation?


“Take your time Mikey. Russ’ is open twenty four hours.” Jordan said with a smile.


Jordan was calm and patient; unlike the rest of his family, he never got caught up in emotions. If Micheal ever needed to talk through a problem, Jordan was the best person to do it with. He never rushed Micheal or got angry when his nephew couldn’t string together sensible sentences. 


Ringing his hands together, Micheal searched his mind for the right words. Jordan would be the first person Micheal was telling this massive discovery to and Micheal wanted all his words to come out perfect.


“Uncle Jay I think-” Micheal shook his head. “No, I know, I’m gay.” He said, saying the words out loud to someone other than his reflection for the first time.


Time seemed to stop as the men headed down the empty street. Micheal’s heart quickened as he wiped his sweaty palms on his denim shorts.


“That’s the first time you’ve said it, isn’t it?” Jordan said as he pulled over.

Micheal nodded, unable to trust his voice at that moment.


Jordan stroked his hairless chin, seeming to look back on a memory.


“I remember the first time I said it. I was about your age, maybe a little older. I told my buddy Mark. Man I was so scared I bout shit myself.” Jordan said with a laugh.


Micheal exhaled the longest breath he’d ever held. Out of all the scenarios he’d dreamt up, this was never one of them.


“Wait! You’re gay?!” Micheal asked.

Jordan laughed.


“Well don’t sound so surprised!” Jordan said.


Micheal shook his head.


“But mom, and grandma.” 


It was no secret that much of their family wasn’t the biggest fan of the LGBTQ + community. Maddy and Jordan’s mom, along with Maddy and much of their extended family weren’t shy about their hatred for the queer community. Family get-togethers were usually spent spewing biggoted hatred. The only reason Micheal had even thought about coming out to his uncle was because Jordan was a firm believer in people minding their own business and accepting everyone for who they are. 


“Yeah, I haven’t actually come out to them. Your generation is all about living your truth and being out and proud and I love that. I love all the resources and platforms. I love hearing people’s coming out stories and all that. But I’m a private guy. I tell people what they need to know, and the fact that I have a boyfriend isn’t something that EVERYONE needs to know.” Jordan said with a shrug.


That got Micheal thinking. He’d never really had an urge to tell any of his family aside from his uncle. All of his friends knew, hell most of them were there when Micheal finally figured it out, and aside from telling Jordan, he didn’t really feel close enough to anyone else to let them know. But shouldn’t he want to tell people?


“But doesn’t it feel like harboring a secret?” Micheal asked.


Jordan shook his head.


“Not everyone gets the privilege of knowing me in such grave detail. I’m not ashamed of who I am but people like to pigeonhole you. Being one of a handful of black men in a room already comes with it’s own challenges and being gay and black is a whole other ball game. It’s a privilege to know me and it’s an even bigger privilege for me to bare my all to you.” Jordan explained.


Like a puzzle all the pieces began to fall into place, allowing Micheal to see his uncle in a whole new light.


“Can I ask you a personal question?” Micheal asked timidly.


“Yes, Jason is my boyfriend.” Jordan answered, already knowing where his nephew was going.


Micheal smiled, he’d always idolized Jordan and Jason’s relationship. The men were close and respected one another, something that wasn’t very common in a lot of the other romantic relationships in their family.  


Micheal loved the respect with which the men spoke to one another and the best friend type of relationship that they had; that was probably how they flew under the radar for so long. 


“Two questions. What made you finally one to come out? And why to me?” Jordan asked.


“Well you travel the most, you’re the most educated, and I kinda figured you’d get it better than anyone else. But I never expected you to say samesies.” Micheal said, causing both men to laugh. 


“Well surprise!” Jordan said.


“So, I have to ask, any boyfriends?” Jordan asked.


Micheal scratched the back of his head as he looked away.


“Two.” He said shyly.


“Like you’ve had one, broke up and got another one or you have two at the same time?” Jordan asked.


“Two at the same time.” Micheal said.


Jordan nodded.


“Nice. Love a poly couple.” Jordan said high fiving his nephew. 


The men drove around talking boys and business, the best b’s according to Jordan. Jordan told his nephew to call him day or night whenever he had boy problems. Then, making their way back to Micheal’s house, Micheal thanked his uncle before the two headed inside.

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