Matt slipped his hand out of Karl’s as they walked down the street. Karl looked over “What’s wrong babe? Are you ashamed of me or something?” “No of course not…it’s just…” he paused suddenly angry “Oh…it’s nothing” he stormed off. Karl ran after him and pulled him sharply down a side street “Get off me Karl! I’m not joking get your bloody hands off me NOW!” he shouted, almost screamed at him “I’m not letting go until you tell me” Karl replied calmly. Some of the tension went out of Matt as he collapsed into his boyfriend’s arms heavy sobs wracking his thin frame Karl realised for the first time how fragile Matt really was both inside and out and gently cradled him until he had stopped crying. “Right now tell me what that was all about” Karl wiped Matt’s eyes and brushed his hair behind his ears. Matt remained silent ‘Babe you got my school shirt wet you have to tell me what’s wrong’ Karl joked... Matt knew that Karl’s shirt was already wet and dirty because that was what he had slept in but offered no answer to the question except for a small smile twitching at the corner of his mouth. “I’m glad you find it funny Matt…Now come on tell me what’s wrong” Matt tried to hide his head in Karl’s shoulder “Nope, you’re not getting out of it that easy…come on Matt seriously tell me what’s wrong;’ Karl waited for a reply and after what seemed like an eternity and just as he was going to ask again Matt spoke “It’s just all the stress of you running off, me been the only one that knows whether you are safe or not…it’s just a lot of stress for me” Karl hugged Matt tight “I’m sorry Matt I never realised you were stressed…I feel bad for not noticing” Karl stroked Matt’s hair and picked him up “Come on I’ll carry you or else we will be really late!” Karl ran around in circles making car noises, making Matt laugh shakily they ran out into the street and down the road to their local college.