The following story is non-erotic. If you're expecting the gay teacher to jump in bed with her female student; you might want to skip this one. This is a story about a teenage girl struggling with her feelings, and how her friends see her.
Being heterosexual I can't pretend to understand what it means to be gay. However, having my own closeted sexual desires that mainstream society looks down on, I can empathize with the gay community, and what they endure every day of their lives.
This is a fictional story. However, I would like to think that it does resonate with someone, somewhere in this world.
All characters in this story are at least eighteen years of age.
It is a beautiful spring day at Parnell High. The sun is shining, the birds are singing, and the leaves are beginning to bud on the trees.
The students have ditched their winter clothes, and are coming to school dressed in short sleeve shirts, shorts, and sneakers.
Even the teachers and faculty are dressing more casually. The men have replaced their long sleeve dress shirts and ties with short sleeve pullover shirts, and comfortable casual slacks. Some of them are wearing knee length shorts, and white socks.
The women are wearing comfortable short sleeve shirts, and above the knee to knee length shorts.
Melissa Andrews, the social studies teacher is the only exception to the casual dress style. She keeps her long auburn hair in a tight bun on top of her head. She wears white long sleeve shirts, covered by a blue or black blazer, and knee length grey, blue, or black skirts throughout the school year. Her shoes are sensible, and usually black, brown, or blue. She wears no make up or jewelry at all. At 31 years of age, Melissa is an exceptionally beautiful woman, yet she tries to hide her beauty behind the severe bun, and her frumpy style of dress.
Everyone likes Melissa, including the students.
She is an open, outgoing, and friendly woman. Yet for some reason she dresses like an outdated old lady during school hours.
It is the last hour of school for the week, and the students are anxiously waiting for the dismissal bell to ring.
The teachers have handed out the final papers of the week, and are waiting just as anxiously for that bell to dismiss everyone for the weekend.
In Miss Andrews' class, the seniors are poised to launch themselves at the door.
Melissa is sitting behind her desk, watching the young adults, while trying to pretend she is busy preparing for next weeks lessons.
The clock has counted down to two minutes.
Most of the students have already finished their assignments and turned them in.
Only Corky Talbert is still working. The shy eighteen year old seems to be struggling with her paper.
Melissa doesn't understand why Corky is struggling to finish her assignment.
The girl is one of the brightest students at Parnell High. Yet lately she has been one of the last to turn in her assignment. Today she is the only student still working.
As the minutes finally tick down to zero, the bell announces the end of school for the week.
The students immediately bolt for the door.
"Enjoy your weekend," Melissa calls out to the students as they rush past her.
"Bye Miss Andrews, or you too Miss Andrews," several students say as they rush past her desk.
As the last of the students exit the class room, Melissa notices that Corky is still working on her assignment. The girl seems to have a troubled expression on her face.
Melissa stands up, and walks to the class room door. Closing the door, she approaches the still working girl. She leans on the back of the desk directly in front of Corky, and waits for the young woman to finish.
After a minute, Corky lays her pen down, and picks up her assignment. She looks up and notices her teacher in front of her. "I'm finished," she says as she hands her teacher the completed assignment.
Melissa takes the paper and glances over it. She then looks at her student. "Corky, is something wrong?" She asks in a concerned tone.
The pretty brunette averts her eyes for a moment before responding. "What makes you think something is wrong?"
"Lately, you've been slow at finishing your assignments. I've always been careful not to overload my students with work on Friday so they can enjoy their weekend. Yet you just finished a paper that shouldn't have taken you more than fifteen minutes to complete. You've also been very withdrawn lately."
Corky lowers her gaze to her desktop. Looking at the desk, she replies, "I guess I have been a little preoccupied lately."
Melissa notices the sadness in the girl's features. "Would you like to talk about it?"
A twinge of fear crosses the girl's pretty face.
"You don't have to talk about it if you don't want to," Melissa quickly adds. "And whatever you say will stay between us."
Corky continues staring at the desk for a few seconds. Finally she sighs. "I would like to talk about what's going on, Miss Andrews, but not here. I don't want anyone overhearing our conversation."
Melissa nods her understanding. "Would you feel more comfortable discussing what's bothering you off school grounds?"
Corky nods her head.
"I tell you what. Since you live just a few houses from me, why don't you come over to my house tomorrow morning, say around ten? We can talk there."
Corky looks her teacher in the eye. "I didn't know you live near me?"
"I live in that green house three houses east of your house. Would you like to come over and talk?"
Corky gives her teacher a big smile. "Thank you Miss Andrews. That would make me feel better. I'll be at your house at 10 am sharp."
Corky is sitting on her bed watching the clock. The young woman's nerves are pulled so tight she is ready to explode.
"This is a mistake," she groans.
Corky had struggled with keeping her feelings a secret for so long. Not once had she ever acted on her desires.
But now people are starting to suspect.
Her friends have been avoiding her for over two months.
Corky knows Miss Andrews is a kind woman, but talking to anyone about her problem is terrifying to the girl. Still, Corky desperately needs someone she can talk to.
At precisely 10 am Corky rings Miss Andrews' door bell. She looks around, not understanding why she's never seen her teacher coming out of this house.
The only person she's ever seen coming or going from this house is a gorgeous woman who looks like she could be a model. On more than one occasion, Corky has spotted the sexy woman leaving her home.
The woman is usually dressed in a sleeveless shirt, and mid thigh length skirts, that show off her long legs.
Corky had noticed in the past that her neighbor would usually smile and wave at her, whenever they saw each other, but Corky had never approached her neighbor to speak to her.
Corky begins to realize that the woman she has seen on numerous occasions looks a lot like Miss Andrews. "Could the woman be Miss Andrews?" Corky immediately dismisses the idea.
Miss Andrews would never be seen dressed in clothes that shows off that much skin.
Suddenly the front door opens, and Corky finds herself staring at the beautiful woman she has seen in the past. Corky is unable to speak as she stares at this lovely woman.
The woman is dressed in a sky blue sleeveless shirt, red shorts, and sneakers. Her long, flowing hair cascades down her back, with a few strands running down the front of her shirt.
She smiles at Corky. "Hello Corky."
Corky stares in disbelief. "Miss Andrews?"
A welcome smile appears on the woman's face. "Yes, it's me."
Corky continues to stare. "I don't believe it. You look amazing."
"Thank you for the compliment." Melissa steps to one side. "Would you like to come in?"
Corky shuffles through the door, still feeling stunned by what she's discovered.
Melissa closes the door, and then turns to face her student. She eyes the amazed girl, and gives her a warm smile. "You're asking yourself why I look so different when I'm at school, aren't you."
Corky nods as she stares at the woman before her.
"I'm about to sound like I'm bragging, but I'm not. I have to dress that way at school. When a woman looks like me, she tends to be looked upon as a sex object. In order to effectively teach my students, I have to downplay my looks. Otherwise the boys would spend the entire class ogling me instead of listening to me. They look at me enough as it is. Can you imagine how distracting it would be if I showed up to class looking like this?"
Corky took in her teacher's beauty. "I see what you mean. The boys would spend all their time staring at you instead of listening to you." Corky paused for a second. "Please excuse me for asking, but I am curious why I've never seen you coming out of your house dressed like an old lady."
Melissa gives the teenager a small wink. "I roll my skirt up when I leave the house. Then I wait until I'm in the school parking lot to pull my skirt down and put my hair up in a bun. I do it so you don't recognize me. That's why I wave when I see you, but don't speak." Melissa's expression turns serious. "To be honest, I wish I could come to school dressed in short sleeve shirts, and shorts during warm weather days. But that would be a distraction for the boys. The male students would be too busy ogling me to do their school work. The school board would have no choice but to let me go. Corky, I need to ask you to keep my real appearance quiet. I get enough stares as it is, without the students finding out what I really look like. I lost my last teaching job because of my looks, and I don't want to lose this one."
"I won't say a word, I promise."
Melissa looks her young student over. "I'm surprised you don't get a lot of attention from the boys."
Corky lowers her gaze yet again. "Boys used to look at me, but that has sort of changed in the last year or so."
Melissa notices the sadness returning to Corky's features. "Why don't we go to the kitchen and grab a couple of glasses of lemon-aid. Then we can talk about what's bothering you."
Melissa leads her young student into the kitchen.
Corky can't keep her eyes off the woman's long legs as she follows her.
"Have a seat," Melissa offers as she approaches the kitchen counter.
Corky sits so she can watch the woman prepare the drinks.
Melissa grabs a couple of glasses from a kitchen cabinet, and sets them on the counter. She then opens the refrigerator, and pulls out a pitcher of lemon-aid.
Corky stares at her lovely teacher as the woman prepares the drinks. She is stunned by the woman's beauty.
Melissa places the drinks on the kitchen table. She then sits opposite Corky, and takes a sip of the cool, yellow liquid. "Now, why don't you tell me what's troubling you?"
Corky picks up the glass, and takes a swallow. She isn't thirsty, but decides that she needs a minute to collect her thoughts. After a few moments, she speaks. "I have a problem with boys."
"What, do they harass you?"
Corky slowly shakes her head. "They used to ask me out on dates, but they haven't in a while."
"Why do you think boys have stopped asking you out?"
Corky lifts the glass to her lips to take another drink. After swallowing the cold liquid, she sets the glass down. "I guess it's because they think I'm gay."
"Why would they think you're gay?" Miss Andrews asks, her voice filled with concern.
Corky takes a deep breath before answering. "I guess because I always said no when they asked me out."
"So, because you didn't go out with any of them, the boys have all decided that you are gay."
Corky once again silently nods. "It's not just the boys. The girls think I'm gay too."
"Have the other students been harassing you?"
"No, they just don't pay any attention to me. It's not just the boys. My friends have stopped talking to me as well."
Melissa takes a deep breath. "Corky, why do you think you've turned boys down when they ask you out?"
The pretty brunette picks up the glass and takes another drink. She then lays her right arm on the table.
Melissa patiently waits for the girl to find the words to respond.
Corky struggles to find the courage to answer the question. "I guess because I'm not interested in going out with them."
Melissa begins to see what is going on. "Corky, I'm going to ask you a question. You don't have to answer if you don't want to."
Corky nods once again.
"Do you think you're gay?"
The student shrugs her shoulders. "I don't know. Maybe! I'm not sure what I am."
Melissa considers her next question carefully. She doesn't want to alienate the young woman. "Corky, do you have romantic thoughts about girls?"
The nervous young woman stares at the tabletop as she nods yes. Tears of shame begin to flow down her cheeks. "I can't help it. Girls are beautiful. I want to be with them." She wipes away the tears, before laying her hand back on the desktop. She takes a deep breath before continuing. "The truth is I think I am gay. No, I know I am. I just don't know what to do about it." Her face reveals the anguish she is experiencing.
Melissa impulsively reaches out and lays her hand on the top of Corky's hand. "It's ok. You have nothing to be ashamed of. You don't choose who you are attracted to. You either are attracted to someone or you aren't."
"Yeah, but now my friends are afraid to be alone with me. They think I might hit on them."
"I know. It's hard when you're different from your peers." Melissa knows she is taking a risk, but the girl needs to know she isn't alone. "Corky, the truth is you're not the only lesbian in school."
The crying girl raises her eyes, and looks at her teacher. "There's someone else like me? Who is she?"
Melissa knows she's probably making a mistake by revealing her own secret. If the wrong people find out she is talking to the girl, they might misinterpret her actions as a teacher trying to take advantage of a student. Yet Melissa knows what it feels like to struggle with feelings that society tends to frown upon. "Corky, I'm gay. So I know exactly what you're going through. I know it's difficult for you. I know it can be painful. But I decided a long time ago that I wasn't going to let my sexuality eat me up inside. I'm gay. It's that simple. If people can't handle it, that's their problem."
Corky absorbs the statement like a sponge. "Does the school board know you're gay?"
"Superintendent Brand knows, as do the other teachers. I don't go around announcing my sexuality to the world. But at the same time, I don't hide it."
"But I thought gay people are supposed to come out, you know, loud and proud?"
"Do your parents go around announcing that they are straight?"
Corky shakes her head. "No."
"My personal life is my personal life. If I'm out on a date with another woman, I don't hide the fact that we're dating. I'm not a covert lesbian. But at the same time, you won't see me wearing a rainbow shirt, and shouting my sexuality to the world. Please understand; I am not condemning those who do. Personally I think those who do shout it from the rooftops are needed. I'm just saying that I live my life as I choose to live it. I live my life openly, but I don't announce it to the world. Like I said, I don't shout it from the rooftops. But I also don't hide my sexuality like it's something to be ashamed of either. There are a lot of gays who live quiet lives. Some hide their sexuality because they are afraid of what people will think of them. Others, like me don't hide our sexual preference, but we do live quiet lives."
"Do you have a girlfriend?"
Melissa shakes her head. "I did have a girlfriend until a few months ago. She's a teacher in another school. But, she was afraid that if the school board found out, they would look for an excuse to fire her, so she broke up with me."
"But if you found the right person, you would enter into another relationship?"
"Of course I would. I want what most people want. I want that special someone in my life. I want someone to love, and I want someone to love me. You want that as well, don't you?"
Corky smiles as she nods her head. A ray of hope appears in Melissa's eyes. "So, it's ok that I like being with girls?"
Melissa squeezes Corky's hand. "Yes, it's ok for you to like girls."
"How do I handle my family and friends? What if they can't accept me as I am?"
"The only thing I can think to do is tell your family and friends the truth when you're ready. Tell them you're gay. Tell them it doesn't change the fact that you still love them as family and friends. Tell them that you still want to be in their lives. Corky, I do need to warn you that if you tell your family and friends, they still might not accept you. Some people don't have a problem with having gay relatives or friends. Others have serious problems with it. The problem is usually caused by prejudice, fear, and ignorance. You can't keep your friends by pretending you're like them, because you're not. And you can't make your loved ones happy by pretending you're straight, because it will only make you feel miserable."
"I'm already miserable. But I still worry about what my friends will think. They already suspect, and they are avoiding me. If I tell them the truth they might reject me completely."
"Yes, they very well might reject you. But by talking to your friends, it will at least give them a chance to see the real you. Then they can make up their own minds if they want to be your friends. It's a big risk. But you have to be the one who decides when and if you're ready to take that step. I took that step ten years ago. I lost a lot of my friends, and some family members. But I don't regret my decision for a moment."
Corky nods her understanding. She has finally heard something that makes sense to her. "Thank you Miss Andrews. I really needed to hear that." The young woman's brow suddenly furrows as a thought enters her head.
"What's wrong?" Melissa asks.
"If you feel you don't have to hide you really are, then why do you come to school dressed like an old lady? I don't see why you should have to hide the fact that you're beautiful. Also the school board shouldn't have the right to fire you for your looks. You didn't choose to be beautiful; you just are."
Melissa releases her student's hand and leans back. "You know something, I've been thinking about that for a long time. You are right, of course. I shouldn't have to dull my appearance down just to keep a bunch of teenage boys from doing their assignments. I'm their teacher. They will listen to me, and do their class work, or face the consequences. Come Monday morning, Parnell High is going to get a good look at the real Melissa Andrews, whether they like it or not."
Corky and three of her friends are walking down the school hallway. They are chatting and laughing as they head for Miss Andrew's class.
"Do you think it's true?" Cynthia Reed asks as they approach their class.
"What, that Miss Andrews is wearing a T shirt, and shorts?" Mandy Brewster laughs. "I think someone has decided to start April Fools a couple of days early. There is no way Miss Andrews is dressed like a normal person."
Corky smiles, but remains quiet.
"I heard she's wearing makeup, and her hair is down," Cynthia replies conspiratorially. "Jarrod attends her morning class. He said she looks hot."
Mandy laughs. "Mark my words. When we walk into Miss Andrews' class, she'll be dressed like she always is."
During lunch hour, Corky had sat down with her closest friends and talked to them. She admitted that she is gay. She also told them that she still wanted to be their friend, and hoped they would accept her as she is.
They were glad that Corky had told them the truth.
Her revelation gave the girls a chance to talk to her, and ask questions.