Fanart of Travis Phelps from Sally Face

Ah, Travis Phelps. AKA 'what religious trauma does to a MF': the kintype.

Perhaps there were signs of my being Travis before I recognized him as myself, as there was with Bede, Hunter, all of them... But all of those specific incidents are likely blending into the mess that was growing up in a homophobic Christian household. All of the things that I can point to; my anxiety about getting my Bible wet, my desire to help around my mom's church, my intense fear at the thought of people and God reading my mind; could also just be good old-fashioned signs of my religious trauma in the life that I know now. Maybe it's both. Who's to say?

Kinda fucked that I had to go through being queer and living in a homophobic Christian household where I had to repress everything that I was twice, though. Like, come on, was once not enough? Not cool, man.

So, yeah, my dad was a Christian. Exclusively a Christian. Not in a cult. Or... Um, in a different cult than he was in the source material? ... As far as I know? Okay, maybe starting with my dad wasn't the best way to explain my canon divergence. Look, Sal didn't die, I didn't die, Larry didn't die, nobody died. If The Devourers of God was a thing, then it was kept much more on the down-low than it was in the source. We were just kinda teenagers and then young adults trying to live. (Which probably would have been a better story if Sally Face was meant to subvert the stereotypes of a facial prosthetic-user, anyhow. But that's another topic.)

But, still. I suppose that I felt like I was dying for a really long time, anyway. Falling, scrambling to grab onto something. I had the bruises of someone who had hit a few things while they were falling. I had the terror of one. The terror of wondering what would happen once I hit the bottom, once I was dead for real, and if everything that I've always so desperately believed in and hoped was wrong and loved and hated was true, and if all of this would have been for nothing. If all of my prayer and crying to God and suffering and pleading to be fixed would have been for nothing. Until, of course, I let myself approach an angel. One that taught me that being a faggot was holy, and queer desire brought us closer to God.

Metaphorically, of course. I wasn't the type who could accept myself while keeping my religion; I had to completely drop Christianity in order to learn to love myself, which was a years-long process. But he did look like an angel. Acted like one, too, when he wasn't making crude jokes. And it is ironic how his name could be found in the first three letters of 'salvation', no?

(Oh, and fuck the people who purposefully choose to misinterpret who my love letter was for, by the way. It wasn't for Johnson, and y'all know that; the envelope I was going to flush down the toilet was literally addressed to Sal. It's not 'up for interpretation', dipshits. And stop fucking whitewashing me in fanart or I'll blow this whole fandom up.)