CHAPTER 48 — Love, Raw

About mid morning the Stuebings arrived. The kids ran back down the road toward the pond while their mom and dad came over to where Lenny, Reggie, and I worked in jeans and jackets. A front had come through during the night and the temperature had dropped into the forties. The sky was overcast.

“Absolutely incredible,” Mr. Stuebing said, his eyes taking in the bluff. “My wife told me that you had worked wonders.”

“And you didn’t believe me,” Mrs. Stuebing said.

“I thought Lenny would do alright, or I wouldn’t have hired him. But this really is terrific.” His eye settled on Reggie. “We haven’t met,” he said, extending his hand. “I’m Stan Stuebing.”

We introduced the Stuebings to Reggie and told them that he had helped the previous weekend as well. They asked about his school, and his family.

Mrs. Stuebing looped her arm through her husband’s. “I’m going to start on lunch; homemade bread and soup. Then I’m going to show my husband around; don’t you dare let him look around without me, Lenny.” She gave her husband a threatening look.

He grinned. “I’ll carry in the groceries, and I won’t look anywhere else.”

“Oh,” Mrs. Stuebing added, “lunch is going to be a little late, but you boys are eating with us. Ya’ll like beef soup and fresh baked bread?”

“You gotta be kidding,” Reggie said.

“You sure you have enough?” I asked.

“Sure we do,” Mrs. Stuebing said. “We hoped Lenny would have his crew here and planned for it.” She turned toward the house and motioned for her husband to follow.

He started to, but stopped. “How was the fishing on Thursday, Sean?” he asked me. Mrs. Stuebing turned back and took his arm.

“Great,” I said. “I hope you don’t mind; we ate one of your fish.”

“Just one?” he said, jovially.

“There were only two of us.” I said. “And it was a big fish.”

Stan Stuebing frowned. “You didn’t eat Big George did you?”

“Big George?”

“Yeah, a big one that I’ve been trying to catch. Hangs around the clump of stumps at the south end of the pond.”

I tried to think where we caught the fish; which end of the pond.

“Stan!” his wife fussed, punching his arm. Then she turned to me. “He made that up. There’s no Big George.”

“Well not anymore, Honey,” Mr. Stuebing complained. “He ate ‘im.”

“Sean,” his wife said, eyeing my worried face. “He’s teasing. He does that to the kids all the time. If there was a Big George, he would have been fishing there himself.”

Mr. Stuebing winked at me and I relaxed. While they were walking away, Reggie slapped my ass. “You ate Big George!”

. . . . .

Later, while Reggie and I worked at planting a small pecan tree, Lenny showed the Stuebings around the bluff. That’s when Dan drove past us in his jeep and parked beside the Bronco.

“Was that Dan?” Reggie asked. “I thought you said he wasn’t coming.”

“He wasn’t,” I said, brushing my hands off on each other. “I’m glad he changed his mind. I’ll be right back.”

Dan got out of the jeep as I walked toward it. He was frowning.

I cursed under my breath. He would have to drive up while I was working with Reggie. He had probably decided that Reg and I had screwed all night. “Hi, Danny” I greeted him as I drew close.

He directed his frown past me toward Reggie. “You didn’t tell me that Reggie was going to be here.”

“I didn’t know,” I said. “I didn’t find out till I got here.”

“When you got here… last night?” he asked, crossing his arms over his chest.

“Yeah, last night. He was here when I got here.”

Dan’s eyes dropped to the ground and he gritted his teeth.

“Dan,” I said. “We didn’t do anything.”

He glanced at me angrily.

“We didn’t, Dan. I’d be crazy to after last weekend.”

“After last weekend!” Dan exclaimed. “We haven’t talked since last weekend. It’s almost like you’ve been avoiding me, all week. I’ve been wondering if you fell for Reggie harder than I thought. And then I get here and find you two together.”

“I’m sorry,” I said. “I had a damned busy week… college student, remember? Trevor, remember? Wedding?” I gave him a scowl of my own. “Geez, Dan, for once in my life, I didn’t fall for somebody. I like Reg, but I haven’t fallen for him. So give me a break.”

Dan glanced back to where Reggie was working. “You really expect me to believe that he left you and Lenny all alone while the two of you got it on last night?” He looked hard into my eyes, searching. “Don’t fudge the truth, Sean. If he was with you, even if Lenny was sandwiched between you guys, then he was with you.”

I planted my hands on my hips and glared at him. “I slept in the Bronco, Dan. They slept inside.”

That set him back a moment. “You serious?”

“Yes, I’m serious. When I got here, I went inside and we talked. Then I slept in the Bronco until this morning. I know that you think I jump every butt I get a chance at, and maybe I have… some. But I’m trying, OK? Since last week, I’m trying.” I looked away from him; off toward the house. “Shit, it’s been a whole week since I had sex with anybody, and last night, I came out here and wound up having to jack myself off so I could sleep.”

Dan looked at the ground, pensively, kicked a rock, and walked away.

I followed. “Dan,” I said. “You know I don’t lie to you.”

He waved me off. “Just give me a few minutes, OK?”

I watched him walk over to the bluff and then down along the edge, away from the house, and I returned to Reggie, more than a little pissed, myself. Dan had no right to be mad after I’d told him what really happened. And he better believe me about that! I told myself.

Lenny and Mr. Stuebing returned. Mrs. Stuebing went inside.

“Lenny says you guys have been working for free,” Mr. Stuebing said.

“The others have,” Reggie said. “I got paid last week, just not this week.”

“Why?” Mr. Stuebing asked with a lopsided grin. “Why are you guys working for free?”

“Because we’re all friends,” Reggie quickly said.

Lenny was watching me. He was getting as good… or as bad… as Dan, at being able to read me, and it looked like he could tell something was wrong.

Mr. Stuebing shook his head. “You guys are sure different than I was at your age. Somebody’s going to nominate you for sainthood; especially you, Sean.”

I shook my head. “I’m no saint,” I said, thinking that, at the moment, Dan would heartily agree. Maybe I should have just turned around last night and gone back home.

Mr. Stuebing smiled and patted my back with a strong hand. “I wish I had friends like you guys when I was your age. Hell, I wish I was like you guys when I was your age.”

Lenny smiled to himself and I was glad Mr. Stuebing didn’t see the smile, because it would have given a lot away as to who we were really were.

I glanced around again for Dan.

“Whose jeep?” Mr. Stuebing asked.

“Dan. You remember him?” Lenny asked. “The blond guy.”

“Oh, sure. Your best friend, right Sean?”

“Yeah,” I nodded distractedly.

Mrs. Stuebing leaned out the door of the house and called Mr. Stuebing in.

“Where’s Dan?” Lenny asked, after Mr. Stuebing went inside.

So I told Lenny and Reg what happened.

Lenny squeezed the back of my neck. “We’ll vouch for you.”

“Or we can give you another shot at last night,” Reggie suggested with a grin.

Just then, Dan came out of the trees close to the bluff. He stood there, looking at the ground and kicking rocks; waiting for me to come over.

“I’ll be back, guys,” I said.

Dan and I walked back into the woods together, hands in pockets. We walked out of sight of the house and the others, strolling down toward the main road.

“I’m really, really sorry,” he finally said.

I shrugged. “What can I say? We’ve given each other plenty of reason to jump to wrong conclusions.”

He glanced at me sadly and looked away. “I called your dorm room yesterday afternoon.”

“Yeah, Eric told me.”

Dan looked off through the trees. “He said that you were coming up here after the wedding.”

We stopped in a small, sloping clearing out of sight of the others.

Dan sighed. “I called because, after thinking about it, I decided that I still wanted a shot at Reggie. Oh, it wasn’t the same after he fell for you – I wasn’t thinking he would ever by my Lenny. But I thought that if he wasn’t too hung up on you, maybe we could… well, anyway, I decided to pop down to San Marcos and look him up. I figured that I’d tell him I’d come down to see Linda and stopped in to see how he was doing. You know, just see how things developed. That’s why I called you. I was going to tell you what I was going to try.”

“Oh shit, Dan!” I said with a groan. “Let me guess — you went to San Marcos and found out that he’d come down here.”

“Yeah,” Dan said, and tried to force a smile. “It threw me for a loop, Sean.”

“What? You thought I was going behind your back?” I asked surprised. “After last weekend; what you said – I wouldn’t do that. I thought you knew me better.”

Dan shrugged. “Sometimes, if a guy gets hung up on a guy… well shit, Sean. In the past, we sometimes didn’t tell each other things until after something happened.”

“Not lately, Dan.”

He nodded. “Yeah, not for a while.”

Angry, I looked off over the tops of the trees. And then I recalled how when we were first together, it was me who did Aaron and Stef and then told Dan later. Or did I ever tell Dan about that bus ride? Of course Dan was no angel, especially that one year in Houston. I didn’t like to think about that.

“I’m sorry you thought I could do that; sneak behind your back to do Reggie,” I said. “I can’t blame you for thinking it, but I’m sad you did”

Dan shrugged. “Yeah, well, I’m sorry, too.”

“How come you didn’t come out last night?” I asked.

“What? And walk in on Reggie and Lenny screwing your brains out.”

My blood boiled. “Well, I guess I’m finding out what you really think of me.”

Dan gave me a “screw you!” look and angrily kicked at a rock. “Damn it, Sean. After last weekend, what was I supposed to think?”

“After the last few months?” I said. “I would hope you’d think differently.” I walked away from him and then came back. “So what did you do?” I asked. “Last night?”

Dan shoved his hands into the back pockets of his jeans and pried up another rock with his toe. “I cried.” He said simply. “I drove around San Marcos and I cried.”

Somehow, I didn’t expect that. I reached toward his shoulder, but he stepped away. “No. Wait,” he said. “I need to tell you something else.”

“What?” I asked, concerned over the tone in his voice.

He looked away. “I decided to go see Linda. I thought I’d cry on her shoulder.”

“Was she there?”

He nodded. “Yep. She and two other girls were in her room doing their nails or something. Linda chased the other girls out and well… I told her what I thought had happened, Sean. She didn’t think you’d do something like that, but I told her gay guys were no different than other guys when it came to getting sex.”

He glanced at me apologetically. “She was right. I was wrong.”

“I like Linda,” I said.

He looked away again. “We went out to a party Linda knew about. She told me that I needed to take my mind off things, and I felt like getting drunk; cross-eyed, falling-down, forget-the-whole-world drunk.”

“So?” I asked. “Did you?”

“Yep,” he said. “Maybe not falling-down drunk; but drunk. Somebody had grass and Linda and I got a buzz on.” He glanced at me and looked away. “I did her Sean.”

I shrugged. “You’ve done her before, Dan. You did her; I’ve done her. Linda’s cool. We both like her. But,” I said with a raised eyebrow. “I thought you were gay.”

He frowned at me and kicked violently at a new rock; two, three times, trying to dislodge it from the hard ground. “I did her to hurt you,” he said.

I laughed unintentionally; a high, abrupt laugh; a surprised laugh, because Dan sounded like he would have liked to hurt me very much… but with Linda? “How was getting it on with Linda going to hurt me?” I asked.

Dan shrugged. “I don’t know,” he said. “I wasn’t exactly thinking clearly. She wanted to do it, and it seemed like a damned good idea. While you were off screwing Reggie, I’d screw your girl,” he held up a forestalling hand. “Don’t deny that she’s special to you,” he said.

“It was like upping the ante,” he continued. “After I did her, you could worry about me doing girls like I used to worry about you.”

“I imagined telling you about it,” he said. “Oh, Sean, don’t worry about sneaking off to do Reg. Linda and I had a great time screwing our eyes out. She loved it Sean. She thinks I’m hot as hell. Oh, and did I tell you. I think I like girls now. And not just any girl; but your girl.

It was my turn to kick a rock. “I hope you didn’t let Linda know what you were thinking while you fucked her,” I said, angrily.

Dan shook his head and sighed. “Nope,” he said. “That all passed through my mind — or whatever part of my mind was working – while I was thinking about doing it. Once we started… well, I like her, too, Sean. She is different from other girls. And I realized that she might be doing it partly to be nice to me since I was hurting.”

“Oh, yeah, sure,” I said. “I’m sure she did you just to be nice.”

His mouth twisted in a half-smile. “She does think I’m hot. And she did like it, and,” he looked up at me, and his smile widened, “she can be real, ummm… persuasive.”

“Tell me about it,” I said with a shrug. “Who else can seduce gay guys?”

Dan nodded, and then grew serious again. “I’m sorry.”

“You really wanted to hurt me?” I asked.

He nodded.

Ironically, if I had deserved it, I would have been angrier. Instead, I found myself almost dispassionately considering Dan’s viewpoint for a moment. For him to want to hurt me, he must have been hurt, even if it was only his imagination that hurt him.

I faced him. “If you had only dreamed – you know, a when you’re asleep type dream – if you’d only dreamed that I’d snuck off with Reggie, would you be mad at me?” I asked.

He laughed. “Yeah, I might. I might just tell you off in the morning.”

I raised an eyebrow.

“Well, I might. You know how dreams are… sometimes if something’s on your mind.”

I crossed my arms. “OK then, do it now. Tell me off and let’s be done with it; because what you imagined had less truth than a bad dream.”

He waved me off, shaking his head. “You’re crazy.” He tried to walk away, but I followed.

“I’m serious Dan. Tell me off. Chew me out for giving you the least bit of reason to imagine I’d sneak off behind your back. After a dream, you might think, no smoke without fire — you might think there was a reason for the dream and get pissed at me, right? So go ahead; let me have it, because I’m about to let you have it for thinking what you did.”

He stopped walking, and I stopped a few feet behind him. He turned, and his gaze met mine. He bit his lip, and his eyes narrowed. He let his anger go and it flared up in his eyes.

He strode up to me and grasped the back of my neck tightly in his hand, and he put his face nose to nose with mine. His eyes held fire, and anger, and hurt, and love, and desire; all raw and mixed together – especially the anger. My eyes and my heart returned them all – especially the anger.

His hand tightened on the back of my neck and his eyes bore into mine. We looked into each other’s very soul; naked, unvarnished. Our love in its power looked as wild-eyed as rage, yet strangely fragile, vulnerable. With gritted teeth, I glared right back into his eyes and my own fire consumed me.

We threw our arms over each other and squeezed each other hard; almost hard enough to hurt, and we kissed fiercely.

I tasted blood, whether from my lip or his, I didn’t know, I didn’t care. Because in that moment, more than in any promise we’d ever make, I knew that nothing would ever tear us apart. I owned him; absolutely, completely, eternally… I knew it; Dan knew it. And he owned me just as completely. We had each other by our living, beating hearts; and we always would.

. . . . .

I glanced up at the overcast sky as we walked side-by-side back toward the house. “I’m actually glad you saw Linda,” I told him.

He glanced at me.

“Really,” I said. “She’s been a little lonely. You said she likes sex and she does, but last time I talked to her, she hadn’t been with anyone for a while. She’s been waiting for the right guy to come along, Dan. She’s been trying to do things right.”

Daniel nodded. “She still is. I had breakfast with her this morning. I was going to just go back to Austin, but she talked me into coming up here.” He put his arm over my shoulders. “She said I needed to ‘find out the truth, and not make guesses that could be all wrong.’”

I smiled and placed my hand between his shoulder blades, rubbing. He looked tired. “We still need to talk,” I said. “But it doesn’t have to be right now. We need to talk about last weekend and the stuff that Lenny told me… he fussed at me, Dan. Like I told you on the phone, he gave me your viewpoint.”

Dan started to smile, then winced and pressed his lips to the back of his hand, looking for blood. I tongued the inside of my upper lip, feeling for the cut that matched his.

“Want to drive somewhere? Find a room?” he asked.

Off through the woods, I heard one of the Stuebing children calling to the other. A mocking bird flew low past us, and a puff of breeze blew up the hill. The faint sound of the dinner triangle came echoing down through the trees.

“Let’s talk tonight,” I said. “The Stuebings invited us to a lunch. After that Lenny needs a little more help, and later the Stuebings are going back home — they just came out to get things ready for Thanksgiving. We can stick around and talk; maybe spend the night in the Bronco.”

“Weren’t you going to head back? I thought you needed to study tonight.”

I shrugged. “So do you. But we need to be together tonight. You know that.”

Daniel stopped and pulled me into an embrace. We were still out of sight from the others and I relaxed against him. His eyes roamed my features before he lightly pressed his lips to mine.

Just then, the smell of cooking beef and vegetables, along with the unmistakable aroma of fresh-baked bread came wafting down to us from the bluff.

Dan rubbed my back with both hands, pulling our bellies together. “Yeah, let’s stay.”

We came out through the trees and could see Lenny and Reggie, already on the patio. I stopped Dan with a hand on his arm. “Dan,” I said. “Hold on for a second. Last night Reggie asked about Lenny and me, and I told him about the SA boyfriend thing. When I did, he joked that maybe you needed a San Marcos boyfriend – honest, he said that. So I wound up telling him how you thought he could be a Lenny for you.”

Dan frowned. “You what?”

“Look,” I said, “obviously, the idea crossed his mind and after I told him that you were interested, he was all for it. I mean, he really liked the idea.”

“Why did you do that? Why couldn’t you just let things develop?” Dan turned away and looked up into the sky as if about to complain to a higher power about me.

“Yeah, well maybe I shoulda,” I said. “When I’m with you like we were just now, it seems crazy to talk about doing other guys, but we’ve got over half a school year to go before we’ll be together all the time. In the meantime, I’ve got Lenny. On the other hand, Marco’s going with someone else and Sammy’s never been that special to you. You like Reggie. And Reggie likes you. He thinks you’re hot.”

“Yeah, now he does, after you gave him the stiff arm.”

I glanced over to the patio and saw Mrs. Stuebing set a large pot on the patio table before going back inside. Lenny was watching us.

“Look, Dan,” I said. “To be real honest, I’m not thrilled that you might shack up with a stud like Reggie, but you deserve a Lenny, too, and I don’t mean just someone to screw with. Lenny’s my friend.”

Dan shook his head slightly. “Reggie’s no Lenny.”

“But he can be a friend,” I said. “He’s a nice guy.”

Dan took a deep breath. “We’ll see. At any rate,” he said, laying his arm over my shoulders once more, “those two can take care of each other for now.”

Poor Lenny, I thought, remembering his look the night before when I pushed Reggie off on him and went outside to sleep. All week we had talked about getting together and Lenny probably looked forward to it as much as I did.

He watched us approaching. I smiled and Lenny gave me a small smile back.

. . . . .

The Stuebings ate inside. The four of us ate on the patio at a small, round table; me across from Reggie, Dan to my right, Lenny to my left. As we ate, the overcast sky began to recede like a blanket being pulled back toward the southeast.

I watched Daniel as they talked, his pale-blond hair bright in the breaking sun. I surveyed him, one part at a time… one little part at a time.

It was the hollow at the base of his throat that I studied first. That little hollow between the strong cords of his neck muscles. I liked to lick in that hollow. I wanted to lick in it right then.

My eyes traveled up to his chin, and lingered over its perfect balance between strength and elegant grace. And just then, I could picture a lifetime of admiring Dan’s chin, or the redness of his lips, or the graceful, fluted flare of his thighs, or the fine white hairs that rose up the back of his neck, or any other of Daniel’s countless perfections; and it seemed to me that I would enjoy such a lifetime.

Men draw contentment in many ways. It was the contentment of owning a great and rare treasure that I understood as I sat there. I owned Dan’s perfections, from his lips to his toes, just as surely as a man could own land, or buildings, or a work of art; only owning Dan was infinitely better, in large part because Dan owned me back.

The greatest of all my treasures just then, was the knowing smile that Dan gave me.

“I’m leaving the rest of the soup in the refrigerator,” Mrs. Stuebing said, as we finished eating. “And there’s still a loaf of bread left on the counter for when you boys are hungry later.”

Reggie perked up with interest, and I decided we’d have to tie him down if we were to have any of that loaf ourselves.

“You guys staying overnight again?” Mr. Stuebing asked, stepping out onto the patio.

“Dan and I thought we would,” I said.

Reggie shrugged. “I think I’ll head back at dark.”

“I still have a lot to do,” Lenny said. “I’m staying over.”

“Well feel free to sleep inside,” Stan Stuebing said looking up at the sky. “It could get cold tonight.”

“You guys getting it on tonight?” Reggie asked the three of us after the Stuebings returned inside.

“Sean and I need to be alone together, guys,” Dan said. “We may sleep in the Bronco.”

“Just don’t freeze anything off,” Reggie said, smiling at Dan. “I have plans for you.”

Dan’s brow furrowed slightly.

“Hey,” Reggie said, “your boyfriend’s already told me that you have the hots for me. And that’s cool, because I have the hots for your body too,” he said, giving Dan a good look over to drive home his point. “All you guys really turn me on.”

“Baby,” Lenny said, “I think you turn on real easy.”

Reggie laid his large hand on Lenny’s shoulder. “You turn guys on real easy.”

Lenny sucked on his fork and winked. “I’m good.”

I patted Lenny’s leg under the table. “You don’t need to tell anybody, Baby. We all know.”

Lenny’s smile turned a little sad as he looked my way. The weekend hadn’t gone the way either of us had imagined it would.

Reggie turned back to Dan, his smile being replaced by a more sincere look. “I want to try… you know the second-string boyfriend thing.”

“Second-string?” I asked with a chuckle.

“Yeah,” Reggie said defensively. “Lenny’s backup lover for you. I can be backup lover for Dan… second-string.” Then he frowned. “Course, I’ve never been second string in my life.”

“Call it being a sparring partner,” Dan suggested. “It’s sorta like being a training buddy.”

Reggie grinned, taking Dan’s suggestion as assent.

“Or practice dummy,” I couldn’t resist saying.

Reggie’s mouth dropped and Lenny looked like he’d been hit.

“OK, OK,” I quickly said. “Bad joke.”

Reggie nodded with a cocked eyebrow. “You’ll get yours later,” he warned.

“I said I was sorry,” I repeated, wanting to kick myself; Lenny wasn’t in the mood for that kind of joke.

“Now where was I?” Reggie asked, turning back toward Dan. He laid his hand on Dan’s forearm and rubbed. “My roommate has a Monday night class. He never gets back before ten. Let’s try it this Monday.”

Dan took a bite of food, but he didn’t pull his arm away from Reggie. I could tell he was considering it.

Reg leaned closer to Dan. “You’re getting hard aren’t you?” he asked, with a grin.

Dan chuckled.

“Because I am too,” Reggie said. “Real hard.”

Dan glanced helplessly at me. “See what you started?”

I cocked an eyebrow. Technically, Dan was the one who first spoke of his interest in Reggie, but I didn’t argue.

“Monday night,” Reg said, patting Dan’s arm confidently.

I felt Lenny’s hand slide onto my thigh, under the table. His light gray eyes looked into mine, and I gave the faintest of nods to let Lenny know that, yeah, I wanted to get together sometime soon.

And I realized that no matter how much I might love Lenny, there was one great limit to what I could give him; time.

. . . . .

The Stuebings left and Reggie stayed, working with us until dark. We talked him into staying for supper and managed to save half the loaf of bread from him. Then we talked Reg into staying the night.

We built a fire in the fireplace and talked. When I relaxed back in Dan’s arms, Reggie glanced at Lenny, who invited Reg to lie on his stomach so that Lenny could sit on his back and give it a rub.

The night outside was still, and growing rapidly cold.

Dan and I discussed it and decided that the Bronco might be uncomfortably cold. So we decided to bring the bedding inside and set it on the floor, close to the fire. Lenny and Reg would share a couch and we’d pretend that they weren’t there.

The four of us undressed, brushed teeth, used the john, and sprouted wood together. Just before crawling into our respective beds, Reggie looped an arm behind Dan’s waist and pulled him belly to belly. “I’m going to say good night to my Austin boyfriend,” Reggie said with a twinkle in his eye, just before bending Dan backward in a kiss.

I held open my arms to Lenny, and he stepped into them, hugging me hard. He placed his mouth beside my ear. “All week,” he said. “We haven’t been together all week.”

I held his slender body to mine, and our semi-stiff cocks lifted each other’s balls. “I know, Baby,” I whispered. “Tomorrow night.” I kissed him and he wrapped his arms over my shoulders. “Maybe Monday night, too,” I whispered.

“Don’t forget, Baby,” he said. He kissed my lips gently. “Please don’t forget.”

Even at the time, it struck me as a little crazy that after the intensity of the confrontation with Dan and all that passed between us, I could still feel so much for Lenny. And yet I did. I pulled him tight and placed my lips over his.

When Reg and Dan finally parted, they were fully erect. Lenny and I parted the same way.

They took the couch. Dan and I crawled under our blankets and faced each other. We interlaced legs and pulled tight up to our crotches. Dan reached between our bodies and wrapped his hand around my cock. My eyes rolled a little and he smiled. “How’s the lip?” he asked.

“It’s alright,” I said. “That was a pretty incredible moment this afternoon. You need to get pissed at me again sometime.”

Dan’s brow furrowed. “Seanny, I…” he started to say.

“Later,” I said, rolling Dan to his back and moving over him. I didn’t want to talk just then. I wanted Dan. He let go of my cock and spread his legs for me. I rubbed my cock on his and pressed my balls down on his. I covered his mouth with mine and ground down with my pelvis.

There were murmurs from the other couch, but I ignored them. I’d been close to Dan all day, wanting him, needing him; wanting to complete with our bodies what had begun that morning in our spirits… fire joining fire.

We ground and kissed. With a hand under Dan’s thigh, I pushed his knees up and out to the side; I wanted him, to be in him. Dan wrapped his arms loosely over my neck and I pushed up on my hands, looking down at him as we circled hips.

“Got precum?” he asked, breathing open mouthed.

“Drooling it,” I said.

“Find me,” he said, his heavy-lidded eyes meeting mine.

Moving only my hips, I probed into his crack and he moved to meet me. I felt the depression of his opening with my glans and dabbed my precum in. We watched each other’s eyes as I pressed and he tensed. He opened to me, and his opening slid deliciously over my crown before tightening again at the top of my shaft. He clamped down with his sphincter, once, twice.

I closed my eyes. He did it again. A high-pitched whimper escaped my lips.

Dan grabbed my deltoids like handlebars as I eased in. I opened my eyes to find him watching my face as I hit bottom and then swayed my back to press my shaved pubes against his perineum, and my belly against his balls and up the underside of his cock. He bit his lip.

I slid my body up and back, rubbing on him, moving in him… again… and again.

I lowered myself the rest of the way on to him and wrapped my arms under his shoulders. Dan’s hands slid down my back and we came nose to nose. My lips parted, hovering over his mouth until he opened it and I covered his with mine.

Dan laid his legs way out to the side, and I spread my knees sideways on the sheets, going flat with him. I sucked the side of Dan’s neck, and laying as flat as I could on him, circled my hips, rubbing my belly on his cock as I moved inside him.

On the couch, Reggie’s butt rose and fell between Lenny’s uplifted legs, and the room filled with the soft sounds of our lovemaking.

Underneath me, a slight shudder ran through Dan’s body. I tightened my hold, clenched my gut, driving in hard, held it, and shuddered with him. Dan lifted his butt slightly. I pulled back and thrust again; fast, banging thrusts from the hips that kept Dan’s tightness low on my shaft and our bodies pressed together as much as possible.

Dan’s fingers dug into my back, so I slowed, circling my hips again, rubbing his cock with my belly. “I’m almost there,” I whispered.

“I’m ready,” he whispered back.

We moved faster, our moans and whimpers rising in volume until we silenced them in the nape of each other’s neck, and I pumped my seed deep into Dan just before our bellies grew slick with his.

“Stay hard,” he whispered, running his fingers up into the back of my hair.

I pushed up on my hands to look down at him, and kept circling hips, more slowly now. “You stay hard too,” I whispered.

He smiled, and we circled hips together. We made big, slow circles, and then little, tight ones. With a grin, I reversed direction and Dan chuckled, moving with me. And we stayed hard.

“I have a surprise for you,” he said. “I was going to wait, but I want to tell you.”

“It can’t be better than this,” I said, pressing my pubes to his perineum as we ground.

His eyes rolled up, he moaned softly. He slid the palms of his hands back and forth over my shoulders, feeling my muscles, and rubbed his cock against my belly.

“Doncha wanna know my secret?” he asked in a whisper.


His eyes returned to mine. “I got a room for us.”


“Tuesday, in Houston,” he said. “For you and me and Ry so we don’t have to camp out. And I got it for two nights, so we don’t have to take Ry to the airport before we’re ready.” His grin grew wider. “The airport Marriot.”

“No shit?” I asked in delight.

“No shit,” he said with a grin.

I dropped to my elbows on either side of his head and kissed him all over his face, then stopped. “What’s Roger going to say when he sees that on your credit card bill; especially when we’re both supposed to still be at school?”

“We’ll tell him it’s an early honeymoon,” Dan said, drawing his fingers lightly down my back. “Seems right to have Ry along on at least one of our honeymoons.”

I wrapped my arms under his shoulders, hugging him tightly, pushing myself deep into him. “I love you,” he whispered, running his fingers through the back of my hair. “Oh, damn, I love you!”

. . . . .

I returned with a towel and wiped Dan’s belly. He rolled to his stomach and rested his head on the back of his hands. I wiped his butt. Then I wiped off my cock and lay down, half-on Dan, a bent leg over his butt and my face close to his. I smoothed his hair back from his face and kissed his cheek.

Dan extended his arm down his side between us and laid his palm up. I accepted the invitation, laying my cock and balls into his palm.

Dan smiled and motioned with his eyes toward the couch. “Are they asleep?”

“Yeah. I think Lenny got his turn. He’s spooned behind Reggie. Looks sorta like a jockey on a horse.”

Dan chuckled and then yawned.

“Are you too tired to talk?” I asked.

“What do we need to talk about?” he asked. “We’re cool… obviously.”

I shook my head. “What? You think we kissed and made up and everything’s fine.”

“Works for me,” he said with a tired smile.

“Dan,” I said, kissing his bare shoulder. “I need to talk. I learned something last week.”

Dan looked into my eyes, waiting.

“I’ve been thinking all week long about what I need to say to you, Dan, and it’s this… I belong to you,” I said. “And I need to behave like I do.” I kissed his cheek again and left my lips close to his ear. “From now on, when we’re in the same place together, my focus is going to be on you; on where you are, on what you’re thinking, on what you’re doing.”

He started to say something but I went on. “You’re my world, Dan,” I said. “So focusing on you won’t be hard. But there’s something else I need to say; something else that Lenny, um… cautioned me about… my smile. He told me that I’m too damn transparent when I smile at other guys.”

“But…” Dan started to say.

“You know I like guys, Dan. Lenny says I need to not show it so much. It encourages them.” I tried a chuckle. “He didn’t say it in so many words, but he thinks I’m pretty naïve.”

Dan pulled his head back and looked into my eyes.

“Seany,” he said seriously. “Don’t change your smile; it’s who you are. And I need you to be who you are.” He fondled my balls, resting in his hand, as he searched for words.

“I’m not like you, Seany,” he said, quietly. “I don’t think I’d care much about most people if it weren’t for you… honestly. You see people. I take them at face value and think, oh yeah, Lenny’s nice, but a little campy. Or Ry’s a nice guy, but such a kid. But you… you saw who Lenny really was… same with Ry… same with everybody. You discover people and… share them with me.”

He bit his lip, thinking. “Look, I got you into bicycling and showed you how much fun it was, and we liked it together, right? That’s how it is with you and people. You show me how interesting somebody is and I end up enjoying them too.” He smiled. “I only showed you bicycling; you gave me friends.”

I started to tell him that he made his own friends, but he shushed me.

“I like watching you with people,” Dan said. “When your eyes light up at seeing somebody, or you’re all happy talking to someone, it’s fun for me too.”

He shook his head slightly. “Aww, Seany, I don’t know how to say it. I just don’t want you to change that part of you; don’t change your smile.”

I twirled the hair behind his ear with a finger and gave my balls a tiny circle in his hand. “I think I am going to change, Dan,” I said. “I’m learning things. I’m learning how to be your mate; your partner. And I want to do that really, really well.” I hugged his back and kissed the side of his face.

“Ah, Dan,” I whispered. “Whether I write or become a biologist or whatever, being your mate is who I am going to be. That’s going to me by life.” A surge of emotion rose suddenly in my heart. I squeezed him hard, and my cock, which had never gone completely flaccid, grew hard.

Dan grinned. “A whole week without sex, huh?” he asked with a sleepy grin, and slid his hand up to grab my cock. “Well if it’s being my mate you want, you better go ahead and mate me.

I sucked his shoulder and stroked his butt with my hand. Then I slid my fingers down between the back of his legs, rubbing his perineum. It was soft.

Dan yawned. “Sorry, Seany. I shoulda never gotten it on with Linda last night. I’m really shot, but you go ahead.”

“We’ll wait until morning,” I said.

“It’s alright, go ahead.”

“Let me get you hard,” I said, moving up over him, laying my cock in his crack, dropping my legs to the outside of his long, lean ones; kissing the back of his neck.

“It’s fine to go ahead,” he murmured once again. “Just make it nice.”

Normally, I’d wait for the morning; wait until Dan was ready, too. I’d already come twice. But besides being hard again, I wanted to connect with Dan again, to be one with him for just a little while longer. “Maybe for just a minute,” I said.

Dan was still loose enough, and still moist from our sex. I guided myself in, settling with the firm mounds of his butt under my middle. I squeezed his long legs between mine and slid my hands up under the front of his shoulders to grab on. I moved my hips back and forth, finding the fit. “You OK?” I asked.

He nodded, his eyes closed, a faint smile on his lips.

I kissed the back of his neck, his shoulders, and the back of his hair.

“Seany,” he said thoughtfully.


“Let’s do that getting pissed at each other thing again sometime.”

I smiled and pulled the hair back from the side of his face. “There was fire in your eyes, Danny.”

“Yours too,” Dan said, and then chuckled. “Your look was sure as hell transparent then, Seany, but you for fuckin’ sure didn’t look naïve. You looked,” he said, dreamily, “wild and beautiful. I thought I’d cream my pants and I wasn’t even hard.”

“What’s between us,” I whispered in his ear, “what holds us together, Danny… is powerful stuff.”

“Greatest force in the universe,” Dan said softly.

. . . . .

I woke up in the morning lying on my back. I woke up to the feel of Dan’s fingers fondling my balls. He put his lips to my ear. “I’m awake now, Seany,” he whispered. “And I feel really good.”

Without opening my eyes, I frowned. “So you wanna do that getting pissed at each other thing right now?”

Dan laughed out loud. Then he grabbed me and buried his mouth in the side of my neck to give me a raspberry.

“Ayeeee!” I cried, squirming away.

Dan quickly straddled me, digging his fingers into my side.

“Aaaaagh!” I screamed. “Uncle! Uncle!”

Dan kept pressure on my ribs with his fingertips, sliding his hips backward on my belly. His cock felt wet. “You’re already lubed, you turkey!” I said.

He dug his fingers into my ribs again and grinned wickedly when I gasped. He leaned forward over me and maneuvered to get his knees in between my legs.

“Are you awake now, Seany?” he asked, slyly.

I tried to grab his forearms, but he dug his fingers into my ribs even more. “OK! OK!” I cried.

He eased the pressure on my ribs, but kept his fingertips firmly in place as he planted his knees on the floor between my thighs. “Spread you legs, Seany,” he ordered.

“Fuck you,” I said with a defiant grin.

His fingers dug in again.

“OK!” I gasped, pulling my knees up and out wide.

Suddenly Reggie was sitting on the floor beside us, grinning from ear to ear, his big, black cock pointing upward from his lap. “Get ‘im Dan!” he encouraged.

“Back off, second-string,” I said through gritted teeth.

Dan’s fingers dug in and I stifled a howl into a high-pitched hum.

“No mercy Dan. Don’t show him any mercy,” Reggie said, stroking his cock. “… calling us practice dummies and second-string!”

Dan maneuvered his cockhead to my crack, keeping just enough pressure on my ribs to threaten. “Now find my cock, Seany. Wiggle your butt. Get me to the spot.”

He pressed just a little with his fingertips. I gasped and moved my hips, working his cockhead farther in between my butt cheeks, toward my opening.

“Is that the spot, Seany?” Dan asked with a glint in his eye.

Before I could answer he dug his fingers in a little.

“Yes!” I cried, panting. “Right spot.”

“OK then, wiggle on, Seany. Wiggle onto my cock.”

“Shit, this is good,” Reggie said.

Both their smiling faces grinned down at me.

“Sadist!” I accused. Then I tried to cry out to Lenny, but Dan dug his fingers in again.

Lenny came over, cock jutting out in front of him, and knelt behind Reggie. He wrapped his arms across Reggie’s chest and winked at me. “You’ve been asking for it, Baby.”

“What? I didn’t do anything… well anything that Reggie didn’t deserve.”

Reggie leaned over and tweaked my nipple.

I howled again.

Daniel dug in with his fingers and pressed his cock snuggly against my hole.

Running out of breath, I grabbed onto Dan’s shoulders. “OK, OK,” I said, wiggling my butt back against him. “I’ll wiggle on.”

Dan’s crown popped it and we both froze. Then he eased in, scooting his knees forward, lifting my butt with his thighs.

“Fuck him good,” Reggie instructed, both he and Lenny watching Dan’s cock disappear into me. “Teach him some respect.”

Dan grinned and pressed his fingertips to my ribs. “Make me feel good, Seany.”

“OK,” I said, breathlessly. “I’ll make you feel good… you’ve got great hair, Dan. And I love your teeth. You’ve got marvelous teeth. And you dress well. There! Feeling good now?”

Dan dug his fingers in hard and I tensed, clamping down hard at my bottom. Dan gasped.

“Uh, huh,” I said, clamping down hard again. “Who’s got who now?” I asked.

Dan smiled, closed his eyes, and lowering his head in concentration, dug in with his fingers. I gasped, gripping his shoulders hard, and clamped down again.

Dan dove from his waist, going for my neck. With growls that were only half-playful, he planted his mouth on the nape of my neck and grabbed me by the shoulders.

He did for me what I did for him the night before, going flat with me, rubbing my cock with his belly. He sucked my neck and I nuzzled his hair, filling my nostrils with his scent. I stroked the hard, working muscles of his back and ran my hands over his shoulders. We quickly settled into a rhythm.

Beside us, Lenny and Reggie intently watched Daniel’s butt circling at my bottom. Lenny picked up Dan’s tube of lube and pushed Reggie forward, onto his side. Then while Reggie lay on his side and continued to watch us, Lenny lifted Reggie’s top leg to his own shoulder, and straddling Reggie’s lower leg, moved forward. He lubed Reggie and himself, and then guided himself in.

They settled into a rhythm of their own, Lenny stroking Reggie’s big cock while rocking into him with his hips. I suppressed an urge to wisecrack that the second-string was working out with the varsity and closed my eyes to concentrate on Dan and me.

A few moments later, when Reggie moaned, I looked over at them again. Lenny was pumping from the hips. His head was back, his eyes were closed, and his mouth was open. Reggie’s eyes were vaguely on us, and he fingered his nipples as Lenny stroked him.

Watching Lenny’s body as he moved, I thought of the phrase, “poetry in motion.” Lenny’s movements were an incredibly sensuous poetry in motion. His fine, slender body moved as naturally and as effortlessly as any athlete, excellent at his sport. I watched the play of the muscles in his legs and butt as he rocked. Reggie, in obvious pleasure, was moving with him.

They were beautiful, erotically so. But they were lost in their own pleasure. I returned my attention to the familiar feel and body of my lover, my Dan. I ran my hands over his back again and spread my legs wider to feel his weight on my balls and cock. He adjusted his angle and I let him know it was better. I tightened myself around his shaft; around little Danny – just enough for him to feel it, to know that I wanted to give him pleasure.

What we were doing was different from what Lenny and Reg were doing; it really was. And it occurred to me that sexual pleasure meant something entirely different when it was with your mate.

. . . . .

It was still early in the morning when Dan led me by the hand out to the edge of the bluff. In the valley below us, a few columns of chimney smoke rose from among the trees. “I hate this,” he said as we stood side by side. His strong hand gripped mine. “I hate always having to say goodbye to you. It sucks, Sean. It really sucks!”

I squeezed his hand in return. “Just until Tuesday,” I said. “Then we’ll be together till Sunday night.”

He nodded, and released my hand to step behind me. He wrapped his arms around my waist and rested his chin on my shoulder. “What’ll it be like when we’re together all the time?” he asked quietly.

I shrugged and wrapped my arms over his. “Perfect,” I said. “What else?”

“Perfect?” he asked thoughtfully. “You don’t think we’ll get pissed at each other more often?”

“You wish,” I said with a chuckle.

Dan squeezed my middle and kissed the side of my neck.

“You know it’ll be good,” I said. “Remember what it was like before your family moved. We were together all the time then. We were together all the time on the first bike tour. I virtually lived with you in Houston that summer. It was great then, and it will be great now; and you know it.”

Dan nodded on my shoulder, his chin tickling a little. “Our being together is more important than school, Seany. It’s more important than anything.”

I leaned the side of my head against his, looked out across the valley, and sighed. “What can we do?” I asked.

“I don’t know,” he said.

. . . . .

Dan, Reg, and I left while it was still early. Back at Trinity, I found Eric in our dorm room, along with a couple of football buddies. They’d won the game, and Eric had to tell me all about it. It sounded like a great game, and I enjoyed hearing about it.

But one of the other guys in the room was one who usually avoided me, and I was surprised he didn’t leave when I came in. He was never hostile; he just seemed uncomfortable when I was around. A lot of guys were like that, now that they all knew I was gay.

So I gathered up my homework and typewriter and took it with me to Lenny’s. I got there in time for the Cowboy football pre-game show and turned it on. I took off my shoes and long pants, settling onto the floor on my stomach, in just briefs, socks and shirt; I could do that at Lenny’s. I spread my books in front of me and began to read.

After a few minutes, the sound of bouncing bedsprings came from the direction of Michael’s room. Then later, about halfway through the first quarter of the game, Ken came out in just shorts. He came over and lay down on his back, and using my butt for a pillow, he put his legs up onto a couch.

“Sounds like you’ve had a good weekend,” I observed.

Ken nodded his head on my butt and yawned. “Yeah, we were out late at a party.”

“What kind of party?” I asked

“A gay party,” Ken said, twisting at the hips to rest the side of his face on my butt. He lifted the back of my shirt. “It was cool,” he said as his finger lightly tickled the fine, blond body hairs that fanned up from my butt crack. He blew on them, lightly. “It was at Rafael’s house.”

“Oh?” I asked, glancing back. It was funny, I observed to myself, that the kind of sexy that Ken was, in loose briefs, was entirely different from the kind of sexy he was in speedos, and it tickled me that so little fabric could make such a difference.

Ken pulled his legs off the couch and into a loose fetal position, still playing with my lower back. “He asked about you… Rafael did.”

“You didn’t do anything with him, did you?” I asked.

“Nope,” Ken said, pushing my shirt up higher. “He was too busy chasing a kid who didn’t look any older than, like twelve.”

“Oh, shit,” I said. “There were kids there?”

“I only said the guy looked that young,” Ken said, drawing a fingertip up my spine. “But, yeah, there were a couple of guys there that had to be in high school.”

I thought about Trevor, and finding someone his own age for him. But then I thought of what an encounter with someone like Rafael might do to him and put the thought away.

“He did invite me over again sometime,” Ken added. “You might have to save me from myself again.”

“Yeah, right.”

“You hungry?” he asked.

“Nah, I had a little breakfast earlier.”

“I’m hungry,” he said, rolling to get up. He kissed low on my spine, just above my waistband. “Yep,” he said. “For sure, you’re going to have to save me from myself.”

When Ken went to the kitchen, I moved to the couch, thinking I might take a little nap before studying more.

I woke to the feel of lips on mine, and the scent of Lenny and dirt. I opened my eyes.

“Hi, Baby,” he said softly. “I thought you might be here.”

I smiled. “I’m glad you came back. You need to rest some, too.”

He nodded and got up from where he’d knelt beside me. “Shower first,” he said. “Then I’ll be back out.”

I gathered my books and typewriter and went to the kitchen to set up at the table there. I needed to type a school paper as well as a story for Tom.

Before long, Ken joined me with his own books, and we had a two-person study hall going. Michael came out in a robe and sat in Ken’s lap, kissing him before resting his head on Ken’s shoulder. It was obvious that Michael really loved him, and I hoped Ken would hang in there with him.

. . . . .

That night, Lenny and I finished making love with Lenny sitting astride my lap, riding me. When we were done, he simply lay forward half-onto me, and made himself comfortable with his head on my shoulder and a leg over mine.

He ran his hand lightly over my pecs, petting, stroking. He kissed my chest and took a deep breath. “I believe you now, Baby,” he said softly.

“About what?” I asked

“About you and Daniel,” he said, running a fingertip over my nipple. “I thought you two were just boyfriends, no matter what you said about getting married and all.”

“You mean like… temporary?” I asked, stroking his back.

He nodded. His breath tickled my chest. “Watching you this weekend… you didn’t act like any boyfriends I’ve seen before. You two act like…”

“Assholes,” I completed for him. “Getting pissed at each other.”

“Friends fight,” he said, quietly. “You acted like friends. You acted like you’ve been best friends all your lives and like you always will be.” He lifted his head and looked into my eyes. “The way you are together makes me wish I had a life partner, too.”

He stroked my hair back. “I wish it was you, Baby.” Then he quickly shook his head before I could say anything.

“I love you,” he said simply. His eyes roamed my face. “I love you more than you can know.” Then his eyes met mine. “You started something, Baby. The way I feel about you… the way you feel about me… but knowing you’re going to be with Daniel.” He stroked my hair silently for a moment. “I want someone, too,” he said. “I’m going to try to find someone.” Then his brow furrowed. “Do you mind, Baby?”

I rolled toward him, leaving my arm under his neck, slipping the other behind his waist to pull his belly to mine. “Yes,” I said softly, my eyes close to his.

“But you understand?”

I nodded reluctantly. “Whoever you find better be damned good,” I said.

He smiled and gently kissed my lips. “He’ll have to be,” he whispered.

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