Time and Time Again by Tagsit
FeatureSummary:

Did you ever wish you could go back in time and change just one thing you’d done - just one - thinking that you could change your whole life for the better? Well, Brian Kinney did. He was sure that all his problems stemmed from that first time he broke his first rule about sex - never let a trick stay the whole night. If he had never let Justin Taylor insinuate himself into his life, he would still be the top Stud of Liberty Avenue, free from the heartache and headaches of a relationship, with his friendships and family intact. At least that was what Brian was thinking the night after Justin left him and went to live with the stepford fags, Michael & Ben. But, every action has some direct or indirect consequence and Brian may not necessarily like the results that he gets when he wishes he could go back in time and change his life. This story begins after Episode 5.07 but flashes back to episode 1.02 & 1.03.


Categories: QAF US, Reader's Choice Award Characters: Brian Kinney, Justin Taylor
Tags: 10k+ Word Count, Out of Character, Violence
Genres: Alternate Universe, Angst, Magical/Supernatural, Romance, Science Fiction
Pairings: Brian/Justin
Challenges: None
Series: None
Chapters: 21 Completed: Yes Word count: 91141 Read: 80156 Published: May 04, 2016 Updated: Dec 02, 2017
Story Notes:

Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author.  The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise.  No copyright infringement is intended.

The gods of sleep are still not being at all kind to me - good news for all of you because I spent the hours betewen 2:00am and 6:00am outlining this story for you. It's likely to be a little darker than some of my other stories and not nearly as porny but much more plotty. So, if that's the sort of thing you like, please, read on. TAG

******* Beautiful Banner by Marny - Endless Thanks! **********

1. Chapter 1 - The Night Before the Morning After by Tagsit

2. Chapter 2 - Business as Usual by Tagsit

3. Chapter 3 - No Regrets? by Tagsit

4. Chapter 4 - I'm Pretty Sure I'm Not Crazy by Tagsit

5. Chapter 5 - No Way Out by Tagsit

6. Chapter 6 - I’m Pretty Sure I AM Crazy - Why Won’t They Believe Me? by Tagsit

7. Chapter 7 - Crazy Happy Day's Disastrous End by Tagsit

8. Chapter 8 - Craig’s Version of Crazy Day by Tagsit

9. Chapter 9 - Murder, Anyone? by Tagsit

10. Chapter 10 - R.I.P. Craig by Tagsit

11. Chapter 11 - How To Ruin a Perfectly Good Funeral by Tagsit

12. Chapter 12 - Getting Back to The Living by Tagsit

13. Chapter 13 - Who Is This Guy? by Tagsit

14. Chapter 14 - A New Plan by Tagsit

15. Chapter 15 - Operation Convince Craig by Tagsit

16. Chapter 16 - Operation Convince Craig - The Justin Variation by Tagsit

17. Chapter 17 - Almost Perfect? by Tagsit

18. Chapter 18 - The Hobbs Variable by Tagsit

19. Chapter 19 - The Reverse Bashing by Tagsit

20. Chapter 20 - Zen and The Art of Twink Maintenance by Tagsit

21. Chapter 21 - The Prince and The Palace by Tagsit

Chapter 1 - The Night Before the Morning After by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

This story came to me in part from reading all the fics (mostly one-shots) where an author rewrites a scene from the show so that the outcome is more in line with what he or she would have liked to see. The problem with all those fics, I was thinking as I read, is that QAF wouldn’t have been the show we all loved if it hadn’t been for all those bad or questionable choices the characters made along the way. It might have been better, but it might also have been a lot worse. You know - sort of the ‘Butterfly Effect’. Or maybe it’s good old Newtonian physics: for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Or maybe it’s Karma or Fate. You pick, depending on your particular belief system and/or favorite deity. But, this is my idea of what would/could result if you tried to change even one moment of time. The story is all told from Brian’s POV. TAG

 

Chapter 1 - The Night Before the Morning After.

 

Brian’s POV

 

“You already know what I want. I’ve already told you,” Justin had said to me.

 

“That’s right. That you have - a husband, a family, a home - all the things that make life worth living,” I had responded sarcastically, throwing all those dreams back into his face.  

 

“Would you fucking cut it out. Just stop it, Brian.” Justin had finally lost his temper, the anger glinting in his bright crystal blue eyes, but he instantly swallowed it and continued to try to discuss things in that reasonable tone of voice that made me even more angry. “And, I know you can’t give me those things.”

 

“Not CAN’T. Can’t implies that I’m incapable. It’s that I WON’T.” I’d responded.  

 

The conversation keeps repeating over and over in my mind. Why the fuck did I say that? Yeah - it’s the truth. But, I guess I didn’t have to say it like that. It’s just that I’m having a really, really fucking lousy week and Justin had to pick that night to get into this all AGAIN. Why the fuck did the twink have to pick this fucking week to go all domestic on me?

 

That stupid fucker, Brandon - I blame my entire fucking crappy week on that asswipe. How the hell did I get here? Why the hell do I even care if the latest fad on Liberty Avenue - with his flat ass, his shaggy, greasy hair, thin lips and an expression that perpetually looks like he’s smelling a particularly unhygienic trick - turned ME down?

 

I’ll tell you why - It’s because I’m off my game. It’s because I’ve spent the last four years of my life being slowly brainwashed by the fucking stepford fags and that needy fucking twink. They almost had me, you know. I broke all my fucking rules for Justin and look where it’s landed me. He’s fucking gone - I broke every single one of my personal rules for him and it still wasn’t enough. Now, here I am, pushing 35 and because of him. . . . .

 

Because of him I’m now standing here in Mikey’s Stepfordville kitchen, drunk off my ass, having this ridiculous screaming match with my former best friend while the twink hides somewhere upstairs. Well, fuck them all. I won’t do it. Brian Kinney doesn’t do imitation hetero happiness. Justin knew that from the start. He seemed perfectly happy with the way things were until Mikey and the professor got to him.  

 

“He was never perfectly happy,” Michael is yelling at me now, and it’s pissing me off cause I think I’m starting to sober up. “He’s been waiting for years for you to say ‘I love you. You’re the only one I want’.”

 

“That’s not who I am!” I yell back at the one friend that’s stood by me since I was fourteen but who has abandoned me now because of the stupid twink.  

 

“Don’t we all know,” Mikey insists, his tone full of disdain for me and my life.

 

Well, if they all know it then why the hell are they all trying to make me act like someone I’m not? This is Brian Kinney. What you see is what you get, fellas. This is the way I’ve always been. Why should I change?  

 

I still don’t even know why I’m here. What the fuck did I think would come from my confronting Michael? Oh, yeah - I didn’t think - I was a lot drunker when I decided to come over here and it seemed like a good idea then. Especially after I was practically driven out of my own club by that interloper, Brandon, who stole MY trick. I got nothing to go home to now that the newly domesticated Twink Version 5.0 has left. I guess I thought that Mikey knew who I really was and would at least understand. I guess I thought wrong. AGAIN.

 

“He didn’t leave because I ‘infected’ him, Brian,” Michael was still ranting at me even though I’ve already moved on from this conversation. “He left because of you. Who wouldn’t”.

 

Okay! Ouch! What a fucking mistake it was to come here. I really need another drink before I’m completely sober and that last lick starts to sting. I could also use a bump. And a blowjob.  

 

Screw the twink. Screw Michael and the Professor. Screw all these fucking hetero values they keep trying to shove down my throat. And, mostly, screw that fucker Brandon. I’m going back to Babylon and get my needs met, like I should have been doing all this time instead of playing house with Blondie. If only I’d stuck to my principles and not let the twink get to me that first fucking night. If I’d stayed with the tried and true and kicked him out before dawn, I wouldn’t be in this fucking situation.  

 

It’s time I got back to the basics! I still believe only in fucking - get in and out with the maximum of pleasure and the minimum of bullshit. Fuck all the relationship crap.  If the twink wants to go off and tell himself he needs ‘Love’ and all the crap that goes along with it - the 2.5 kids, the golden retriever and the white picket fence - then let him. I should have never wasted my time on him anyway.

 

Fuck, I need another drink.

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<1.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

The fucking alarm is going off. Shit. It feels like my head is going to explode. When did I move the alarm back over to the other side of the bed again. If I roll over there to turn it off I’m probably going to puke, but if I don’t the noise is going to break my eardrums. Fuck.  

 

I roll over towards the alarm on the side table on the far side of the bed and have to reach across another warm body to get there. Shit, last night’s trick is still here. My eyes aren’t exactly open yet and I roll back to my pillow and lay there trying to will away the headache.  

 

Fuck. This isn’t a good way to start over with my rules - never letting the trick stay overnight is rule number one. Why the fuck didn’t I throw the guy out last night before I passed out. Probably because I passed out, is why. God, I’m going to just close my eyes and lay here for a few more minutes and hopefully, he’ll get the hint and disappear.

 

I start to drift back off to sleep thanks to my still relatively high blood alcohol content. That’s when I feel a soft, warm, oddly familiar hand on my shoulder. And, then, a moment later, the hand reaches across my body and a soft, only slightly stubbled cheek replaces the hand on my shoulder. It’s so familiar - the touch, the scent, the feel of the person next to me. I rouse from dozing enough to roll over and snuggle into that warm neck, the familiar ticklish hairs trailing against my nose and cheek. Then it hits my brain that this is NOT right and I bolt up onto my elbow to look down at the familiar and beautiful face on the pillow next to me.  

 

Shit! What the fuck is Justin doing back here? What the fuck did I do last night after I left Mikey’s? The last thing I remember, I was at Babylon. I saw that fucker Brandon getting sucked off on the dance floor and told security to have him permanently banned. Then I got a little drunk - okay a LOT drunk - I don’t remember leaving the club at all. When did Justin get here and why is he in my bed?

 

“What the fuck are you doing here?” I ask the twink.

 

“You said I could stay,” the twink replies like there’s no problem at all with him just crawling back here after he practically slammed my balls in the door on his way out the other night.  

 

“Well, I was fucking drunk out of my mind so don’t believe anything I said,” I snark at him, roll back onto my own pillow, and cover my face with my hand to keep out the annoying sunlight.  

 

Something about this is just not right, though. I manage to sit up enough to look around the bedroom and through the doorway out into the living room area. It’s a fucking mess; furniture overturned, clothing everywhere, the blinds all pulled wonky. It looks like I had one hell of a great party here last night, I just wish I could remember it.

 

“Jesus Christ, what the hell happened?” I ask Justin, who’s sitting up in the bed next to me and smiling over at me with the most adorable twinkie smile.

 

Then I look at Justin more closely and - fuck me - what the fuck is GOING ON HERE? Am I still tripping? What the fuck did Anita sell me last night? The twink looks like he’s seventeen again. He’s got that same prep-school buzz cut hair that he had the first night I met him. His skin and eyes and mouth - they all look just the way they did that first night. I mean, it’s not like Justin ever really looks his age, even today at twenty-one he still looks seventeen most of the time. But this morning he fucking LOOKS seventeen again.  

 

I carefully run my hand through his hair looking at his right temple and I CAN’T FIND IT! The scar. The fucking scar from the bashing isn’t there. What the FUCK! I jump the fuck out of that bed as fast as I can and stand there stark naked looking down at the beautiful fucking SEVENTEEN YEAR OLD TWINK IN MY BED!  

 

‘Okay. Don’t panic, Brian’, I tell myself. Think. I bend down and reach over to feel the warm smooth skin of the blond twink; he’s definitely real and not just an hallucination. I pinch him and he yelps and giggles as he scoots out of range of my fingers. It’s definitely not an hallucination. So, what then?  

 

“You were doing handstands and juggling,” Justin said, laughing, obviously responding to my last question. “You’re not very good.”  

 

Well, if this present moment wasn’t an hallucination, and it didn’t look like it was a practical joke from the adoring look on the twink’s face - oh and the fact that there was no scar - then was the rest of what I THOUGHT I remembered the hallucination? A drug induced dream? But, if so, how come I already remembered doing this particular morning before? Deja vu was one thing but this was fucking amazing. What the hell was in those drugs Anita gave me?

 

“Shit. Why do I do these things,” I said aloud, noting that the twink was about to respond, so I stalled him. “I’ll tell you. It was that fucking pig Anita. She told me that was E. That wasn’t E; that was some shit they cooked up in a bathtub in Tiajuana.”

 

“That’s why you should never take drugs that aren’t prescribed by a physician or recommended by a reliable pharmacist,” Justin announced with that completely innocent and sincere look I remember from when he was seventeen - which was apparently now - in fact, if I remember correctly, that was the same fucking thing he said to me four years ago.  

 

I think . . . Maybe I’m fucking crazy. Was it all a fucking dream?  

 

“Can I take a shower?” the twink asks, his face is so young looking, it’s totally creeping me out.  

 

I start to tell him to go ahead, but then I stop myself. Wait a minute - even if that was just a dream, wasn’t I just telling myself that I needed to stick to my rules? Rule number one - don’t let the tricks outstay their welcome. That means they don’t stay overnight and if, by some mistake they do, then they’re kicked out as soon as I come to. No shower, no nothing. Here’s my chance. I need to do things right. Dream or no dream the message is clear, I can’t start breaking my rules for this twink or for anyone else.  

 

 

“Wear it home with pride,” I tell blondie, trying to convince myself that this boy is just another trick and everything I think I ‘remember’ about him is just some stupid figment of my imagination. “Time for you to go, Sunsh . . ."

 

I start to use that stupid pet name that seems to just fall off the tongue every time you look at the boy. But I manage to stop myself - that was just a dream, right? Hell, for all I know this twink’s name is Fred or Larry or Dweezil. I just dreamed that I knew the kid and we were together for four years and his name is Justin, right?  

 

“What was your name again?” I ask the twink, just out of curiosity.

 

“Justin,” he says with such a disappointed look on his face.

 

I start to pick up the kid’s clothing which is strewn all over the floor of the bedroom to hide my panic. Fuck. Fuck, fuck, fuck. It has to have been a dream, right? This kid is obviously NOT twenty-one and he hasn’t got any scar from any bashing. Everything I think I remember can’t have happened or I wouldn’t be here now with a pristine, recently de-virginized seventeen-year old twink with no noticeable scarring of any kind.

 

“Time for you to go home, Blondie,” I say, tossing him his clothes and practically dragging him out of the bed.

 

“You don’t have to shove me out the door, Brian. I’m going, alright,” the kid complains but then his tone changes as he nears the door and turns to look at me while he hastily dons his clothing. “When can I see you again?”

 

“Never. I don’t do repeats. Get the fuck out!” I practically scream at him, shoving the kid out the door onto his ass and slamming the loft door shut.  

 

I lean back against the loft door, breathing hard. I feel like crying for some reason. What the fuck is wrong with me? Anita’s so fucking going to pay for whatever the fuck shit she gave me this time. Why the hell do I feel like I just threw my best friend out the door? I don’t even know the kid, it was just one night and fuck it . . ."

 

I walk over to the kitchen counter where there’s a fifth of scotch almost all the way full and upend the bottle into my mouth, downing a good half of what is left in one swig. That was one fucking weirdass dream, though, and I need to do something to get it out of my mind. Imagine, me - Brian Fucking Kinney - settling down into semi-domestic bliss with some fucking twink. I would NEVER do half the shit I seem to remember from that dream. I would never go to some fucking kid’s prom with him. I would never play fucking nursemaid to some gimp kid. I would never . . . Would I? Fuck, it all felt so goddamned real. I quickly upend the bottle again and down the remains of the bottle of scotch and head back to bed, hoping that by the time I wake up from the second hangover I’m going to have after drinking this bottle, that I will have forgotten all about the beautiful, wonderful twink named Justin Taylor that I may or may not have spent the last four years of my life with.

 

 

End Notes:

Originally published - 7/22/12.

Chapter 2 - Business as Usual by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

Brian gets his second chance to redo that day - I don't know if he's going to like how the redo turns out though.  Read on!  TAG

******Sorta Warning - (Not Really) Major Character Death.*******  

I'm not sure how to word this warning without giving away the entire plot of the story but here goes - throughout the rest of this fic there will be occasional discussions and/or descriptions of the deaths of major characters. However, as you read you will see that it doesn't really happen the way you think. They sort of don't 'really' die. That's really all I can say without giving everything away. Please don't let this throw you off reading my story though - I PROMISE this will not have an unhappy ending.  TAG

 

Chapter 2 - Business as Usual.

 

Great, Michael’s finally here with the Jeep so we can get some breakfast and I can get to work. Although I’m not sure how productive I’m going to be with this fucking killer headache. I wonder if Justin made it to school . . . Fuck, I need to stop thinking like that. It doesn’t fucking matter. It was just a dream. It WAS just a dream, right?

 

“Briannnnn!” comes Mikey’s bellow from the street below.  

 

It’s a good thing that my neighbors are rather understanding people since this is a pretty common occurrence when I’m too drunk or stoned to drive myself home. I tromp down the stairs and through the loft entrance doors and then notice the lovely new paint job the Jeep is sporting.  

 

“Oh, that’s beautiful, Mikey. Just beautiful!” I comment on the word ‘Faggot’ spray painted on the side of the car.

 

“It’s not my fault. I told you about those two psychopaths down the street,” Mikey whines.  

 

“It doesn’t matter anyway. It’s a company car,” I say as I get in to drive, Michael jumping into the passenger seat beside me.  

 

“So what happened to Boy Wonder,” Michael asks as we head towards the Big Q.

 

“I sent him packing as soon as I was able to string together two words this morning,” I tell Mikey, trying for callous but feeling a little nauseous as I say it.

 

 

 

“Good. He was way too young for you anyway,” Michael comments.

 

I don’t say anything. I just sit there trying to convince myself that the weird dream was just that - a dream - and the coincidence of the Jeep getting vandalized like I knew it would be doesn’t mean anything. Luckily, Michael is too busy talking about Gus and me being a father and showing me the pictures he’s already printed out on his computer from last night to notice that I’m a little quieter than usual. He gives me a stack of photos to keep - like I’m the kind of sentimental fag who would make scrapbooks or something - and I toss them quickly in my briefcase without looking at them, then promptly forget about them as soon as I drop him off at his fabulous place of employment.  

 

Then I’m off to Ryder to put in a regular day of advertising brilliance. Okay, I’m less than brilliant today, but I have a lot on my mind what with being a new dad and all - that and the hangover - not to mention this stupid knot of what-the-fuckever (fear/sadness/indigestion/whatever) in my gut all day. I down about twenty ‘Tums’ but they don’t seem to help much with the shit making my guts ache. I just have to buckle down and ignore it as best I can and promise myself that I will never do Anita’s shit again.  

 

After lunch, I go to get into my briefcase for something and find the stack of photos Mikey dumped on me this morning. I decide to pull them out and look them over after all, still marvelling at the concept that I have a baby. Brian Fucking Kinney is a ‘father’ - it’s inconceivable! Looking through the photos, I’m kind of amazed at how cool it is to see this little nipper and I decide to keep a couple photos in my desk here at work.

 

That’s when I come across the photo with the twink in it. Fuck. He’s so goddamn beautiful. I’m still staring at that cursed photo like twenty minutes later when Cynthia comes in to tell me that I’m late for the Diverson strategy meeting.  

 

“Is that the baby?” Cynthia asks, looking over my shoulder at the photo I’m holding.  

 

“Yep. That’s Sonny Boy!” I answer in my best proud papa voice.  

 

“Who’s the gorgeous arm candy next to you Boss?” Cynthia asks next.

 

Okay. How do I answer that one? I just sit for a few more moments, staring at the photo before I finally respond, “Nobody. Just some guy I met last night.”

 

“Too bad. He’s a doll!” Cyn comments, then starts to hustle me out of the office, so I shove the photo into the top drawer of my desk. “Anyway, come on, Brian. You’re gonna get your ass handed to you on a plate if you make Ryder wait much longer.”

 

God, the meeting seems to go forever and I still feel like shit when it’s over. My headache is gone but my gut is still tied in fucking knots. I’m probably getting ulcers or some shit like that. When Mikey calls me just before 5:00 pm to find out if I’m gonna meet the rest of the gang at Woody’s tonight I beg off, citing my ongoing hangover symptoms. Okay, maybe I’m also just a bit worried that the twink might show up at Woody’s tonight, since that’s what he did in my ‘dream’. I don’t want to even think about that and I know I don’t want to deal with seeing him. My resolve to stick to my rules is pretty weak right at this moment and I know I’m better off not tempting fate. So, a night with Marlon Brando on my DVD player sounds like a much better call.  

 

I lay low for the next week or so - probably not really necessary, I know, but that fucking dream really got to me, you know. I figure it’s better safe than sorry, right? So, I blow off Mikey and the guys when they ask me to go to Woody’s and Babylon.  

 

Besides, I’m still feeling a little off - not sick really, but just not myself, you know. I still have this weird feeling in my gut and it gets worse when I look at that photo of the kid, me and Gus that I still have in my desk. It’s a really good picture of me and the baby and I think I’ll get it framed, actually. One framed picture of my kid on my desk at the office doesn’t mean I’m turning into a lesbian, right? And it’s a good photo. I kind of don’t mind seeing the kid in the picture either, for some reason, except for this sick, lonely, nauseous feeling in my gut sometimes, but I’m sure that will go away with time.

 

So, it’s a good thing that I’m just staying home alone. I’m NOT hiding. There’s nothing to hide from - it was just a fucking dream - it’s not like, if I go to the bar or the club I’ll see the kid, that’s just my superstitious Irish genetics trying to insinuate themselves into my psyche and I’m not going to listen to it.  

 

I finally make it back to Woody’s after about two weeks and the guys act like I’ve been gone for months. And I mean both the guys that I refer to as my ‘gang’ as well as all the other guys who apparently haven’t had any other dicks to suck the entire time I’ve been gone. For the first couple of nights after I return from my self-enforced exile, I’m pretty much a fixture in the bathroom at Woody’s and the backroom at Babylon - so many tricks have apparently missed my singular attentions that I barely have time to recover between blowjobs before another needy fag is begging for my cock.  

 

It’s quickly back to business as usual for Brian Kinney, Stud of Liberty Avenue - which is EXACTLY as it should be. If anything I’m even more ruthless when it comes to my personal rules than I’ve ever been before. No seconds. No tricks staying overnight. Nobody with a dick less than 7”. And, as always, no excuses, no apologies, no regrets and nothing even remotely resembling a relationship. It works for me. It always has and there’s absolutely no reason for me to change.

 

I decide to keep the photo of me, Gus and the twink on my desk at work, though. It’s a really good picture and there’s no reason not to keep it around. Okay, so it was a weird and completely improbable dream - me with a partner all settled down and everything *pffft* - but, there were some good parts to it, too. I still remember that dream so vividly - it’s the strangest thing I’ve ever experienced. I even dream about the dream sometimes - like I’m dreaming about things that happened in my past.  

 

And the twink - well, he was pretty fucking fantastic in bed - so it doesn’t hurt to keep his picture around. If it’s a slow day at work or I’m stressed or anything, I even jerk off to the picture of him sometimes - of course I will never admit that to ANYONE. Some of those dreams about the dream are pretty hot, too - the ones with the twink in them, I mean. Some of the shit I imagined the two of us doing . . . well, okay, I jerk off to those too. Shit, who am I to turn away a good fantasy fuck, right? So what if I occasionally imagine it’s the twink I’m fucking instead of whatever random trick I’m plowing in the backroom - if it makes me cum harder, then who the fuck cares how I’m getting my rocks off, and the tricks never know the difference.  

 

So, yeah, I keep the picture and I think about the kid every so often. But I don’t see him again so that’s that, right? After a few months the shitty feeling in my gut goes away altogether and everything seems back to the way it should be. I’m even starting to forget about the dream. Well, maybe not forgetting about it, but thinking about it less and less all the time.  

 

By spring, I’m so busy at work that I haven’t got time to worry about the twink or the weird dream much anymore anyway. Ryder has promised to make me a full partner if I increase profits by not less than 10% over last year and I’m well on my way. That’s all I’m thinking about right now. I don’t have time for anything else - not the gang, not even Gus, just work, work, work, with a little sex thrown in to keep me sane, of course. I even manage to somehow ignore the fact that I’m about to turn thirty.

 

Well, I HAD forgotten about it until the guys show up at my loft this morning, pulling me out of bed in spite of my complaints and the second worst hangover I think I’ve ever had. If they think they’ve surprised me, though, they’re wrong - the ridiculous ‘Deathday Party’ they are staging is almost exactly like the one I remember from my dream, complete with 'RIP' cake and coffin. How unoriginal can they get?  

 

Since I’m prepared for their shit, I manage to not let it get to me too bad. The only thing I miss is that there’s no blond twink here to give me the celebratory birthday fuck after the idiotic party that I remember from my dream. In my dream it seemed like it was one of the top ten fucks of my life - but no twink means no fuck so I just end up with mediocre fucks at the baths instead. Happy Birthday to Me! At least it’s not so bad that I feel compelled to do the one other thing I remember from my birthday in my dream - no scarfing for me, at least not this year, I decide.  

 

I’m pretty proud of myself that I manage to survive my thirtieth birthday relatively intact and without too much melodrama - the Deathday Party notwithstanding. Okay, I do admit to feeling a little stressed out and jumpy all day, but what the hell, I was turning thirty and I never actually expected to make it this long.  

 

That ulcer might be coming back too - I have that weird feeling in my gut again that I thought I was over.  But anyone in my situation would feel a little stressed, right? I’m probably just still suffering the consequences of the hangover from last night again, too. Great, one more thing to enjoy about getting older - the hangovers are worse.  

 

So with the stress and the ulcer, or whatever it is, should I really be surprised that I can’t sleep at all? Every time I do start to drift off, I dream about the fucking dream again. In the dream, the night after my thirtieth birthday was not a good night for me. Or for the twink. It was probably the worst fucking night of my life - well of my dream life at least. After the third time I wake up almost completely freaked out, I give up on sleeping altogether and get up and watch movies the rest of the night.  

 

At 6:30 I drag my ass down to the Liberty Diner to get some breakfast, some coffee and some company. I know that Deb is scheduled to work the breakfast shift and she’s usually a perfect way to get your mind off anything you’re thinking about since she never shuts up talking for even a second. It’s still way too early for any type of crowd so I have my pick of seating and decide to pull up to a stool at the counter where I can more conveniently chat with Debbie while I let her feed me. Deb of course thinks that I’m just up late after a night of bars, clubs and tricks rather than getting up early after a night of not being able to sleep due to nightmares, which is good because I DON’T want to try to explain this all to her.

 

At about 7:15 the newspaper delivery guy comes by and drops off the Diner’s three regular copies of the morning edition of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. I grab one before anyone else can get to it and start to read. I’m still feeling way too tense and hyped up to go home and sleep so I read the paper with more than my average care - which means I don’t just scan the headlines and then look over my competitions’ various ad campaigns - I am actually reading the stories.  

 

It’s when I get to the front page of the Metro section that I’m thrown for a fucking loop. That ball of stress or whatever in my gut practically explodes as I read the headline - “Local Teen Murdered at High School Prom”. And there, right below the headline is a picture of the hotel where the prom was held and next to it a picture of the victim, one Justin Taylor, showing a beautiful, smiling young man with bright shiny blond hair and sparkling blue eyes.  

 

 

 

“Brian, honey. What’s wrong,” Debbie asks me.

 

All I can do is point to the article in the newspaper. Deb picks the paper up and starts to read the story about the kid who was killed at his prom.  

 

“Says here this Taylor kid was found dead in the parking garage of the hotel where they were having his Senior Prom. Police have no suspects yet. Fuck - it says they suspect it was a hate crime ‘cause the kid just recently came out and had been suffering lots of harassment at school because of being gay. Poor fucking kid. I’m going to go call the rest of my PFLAG group right now and see if we can’t reach out to the kid’s parents. They have to be just devastated.” Debbie says, hustling off to the phone and forgetting about my little outburst.  

 

I snatch back the paper from Deb as she starts to walk away and I read through the entire article. Then I read it again. Then again. It just can’t be true. He’s so young and so talented and so full of life. He can’t be dead. Justin can’t be dead.

 

It was just a dream, right? I mean, I know that in the dream he is bashed. I guess I was worried that this might happen - that would kinda explain why I’ve been so weirded out all night - I knew that in the dream this was the night it would happen. But, even in the dream he doesn’t die - he was bashed, yeah and it was iffy for a while but he doesn’t die and he’s okay after a while. I take care of him and he ends up being okay. He can’t be dead.  

 

This just doesn’t make any sense though. The way I remember it, the reason Hobbs gave for the bashing was because I came and danced with Justin. That’s what he said to the police and at the trial. But I wasn’t there last night. So Hobbs wouldn’t have had any reason to hurt Justin. Right?

 

Unless, of course, that was all just fucking bullshit - I know that Justin had been having trouble with Hobbs all last year. Maybe it wasn’t that dance at the Prom that made Hobbs do it - that was just his convenient excuse. But I wasn’t there last night and he hurt Justin anyway. So, it wasn’t ever really my fault after all.  

 

Except that now it is my fault. I wasn’t there last night. I wasn’t there to stop Hobbs. Instead of hitting Justin only once, he could have hit him multiple times. And I wasn’t there to call the ambulance. Fuck. I wasn’t there to help him.  

 

Justin’s dead because I wasn’t there to help him. I wasn’t there because I kicked him out of my loft that morning. I didn’t want to get involved with him. I didn’t want him to mess up my well ordered life where I get to fuck anything that moves without repercussions. I didn’t want to risk my feelings getting hurt. I was mad at him for rejecting me, again, and leaving me and trying to change me. So, I went back to those stupid rules and kicked him out of my life and now he’s dead because of me.  

 

“Brian? What’s wrong, Brian,” I hear Mikey’s voice and I look over to discover him sitting on the stool next to me. “Ma called and said you’ve been sitting here for like two hours not saying anything. She said you were upset about that gay bashing that’s on the news? I don’t understand, Brian. What’s some stranger getting killed out in the suburbs got to do with you?”

 

“It’s not a fucking stranger, Mikey. It’s Justin,” I try to explain, but it’s hard to talk because of the huge lump in my throat.  

 

“What’s just in? The new Armani Summer Collection?” another voice chimes in and I notice Emmet seating himself on Mikey’s other side. “What’s wrong with you, Brian? You look like shit. I’d ask if someone just ran over your dog, but first of all I know you don’t have a dog and secondly, even if you did, I still couldn’t see you getting this upset because I’m not convinced you have a heart.”

 

“Shut the fuck up, Em. Brian’s upset about this gay bashing thing,” Michael reprimands his joking friend and hands Emmett the newspaper section I’m reading, which he pulls out of my hands as I protest with a moan. “I think Bri must have known the kid that was killed.”

 

“Let me see. Ooooh! Too bad - that boy was a cutie!” Em comments on Justin’s photo. “You know what?  He does look kinda familiar. Hmmm?”

 

“Who’s familiar?” Ted says as he walks in and leans over Emmett’s shoulder to see what the other man is looking at.

 

“Hey, Teddy. Take a look. Does this kid look familiar to you?” Em shoves the paper at Ted for his opinion.  

 

“Yeah . . . Bri, isn’t this that trick you picked up the night Gus was born? I recognize him from that picture you have on your desk.” Ted states authoritatively. “I was just looking at it the other day when I was at Ryder’s dropping off some tax docs.”

 

“He’s NOT a trick. He’s not a stranger. It’s JUSTIN,” I say, trying to explain as I grab the paper back, but I stop when I notice the splashing drops of moisture splattering the paper now and realize that these are my tears. "It’s Justin. Don’t you understand? Justin is dead.”

 

Mikey is totally freaking out now because, except for the 2 or 3 times that I had a really exceptional run-in with Jack, he’s never seen me cry and I’m bawling now. Ted and Emmett look concerned and confused - pretty much in equal parts - because I don’t think either one of the them ever thought I was physically capable of creating tears or even of expressing sadness at someone’s death. But I don’t know how to explain to them that this is JUSTIN who is dead and that it’s my fault. They don’t even remember him, really. I’m the only one who remembers him and God how I’ve missed him all these months and now he’s dead.  

 

I can’t take this anymore. I get up from the Diner stool and literally run out of the building. Mikey and Em are trailing behind me and yelling my name, but I can’t hear them. I run out into the street and just barely avoid getting hit by the number 22 city bus that pulls around the corner right on time. Luckily the bus makes it impossible for Mikey and Em to catch me and I manage to get around the corner.  

 

I run for about ten more minutes before I realize I’m finally safe from pursuit by the gang so I slow down. Images of my life with Justin are still inundating my brain - whether or not they are real memories, it doesn’t matter since they are killing me either way. I know it’s not even ten am but I need a fucking drink - NOW. I look around the area I’ve come to and see one bar that looks like it’s just opening for the day and I make a beeline directly for that source of comfort and oblivion.  

 

 

Chapter 3 - No Regrets? by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

Brian is a complete mess in this chapter. What else can I say. I'm having so much fun messing with his head - poor boy! *Bwa ha ha* TAG

 

Chapter 3 - No Regrets?

 

Here I am sitting in this bar telling all my woes into the sympathetic ear of Moe and getting happily - or not so happily - shit faced drunk. I don't actually know the name of the bartender, or for that matter give a crap, but I'm a huge fan of the Simpsons so I'm calling him Moe and he doesn't seem to mind. I don't even really know where the hell this bar is and I'm pretty sure it's NOT a gay bar. But, Moe seemed to become very gay friendly as soon as he saw my platinum MasterCard and he's been keeping my whiskey glass full and listening to me ramble on about Justin for fucking hours now. I really like Moe.

 

"I should have told him, Moe. He was the bravest man I ever knew. He put up with my shit for years. Why the fuck didn't I ever tell him that I loved him?" I confess to Moe as the tears again drip down my cheeks - I think I'm getting just a bit maudlin but who gives a crap, right? "And now he's dead and I can't tell him."

 

For the most part Moe has just been sitting there listening to my babbling without comment. But, now he speaks up, trying to offer actual bartenderish advice. "What about his family? You can't tell this Justin how you feel, but maybe it would comfort his family if you told them."

 

Moe is abso-fucking-lutely brilliant, isn't he? I suddenly remember Jennifer Taylor and how great a mom she ended up being to Justin. And, I remember how we ended up pretty okay friends, too. She's gotta be just as devastated as I am. I walk around the bar and give Moe a huge bear hug and a big sloppy wet kiss right on his straight boy lips to thank him for this wonderful suggestion. Moe looks like he's about to slug me for about fifteen seconds and then he obviously remembers the platinum card, closes out my bar tab and adds a very generous tip for himself as I sign the credit card slip. Then I totter outside to find a cab.  

 

First I try Jennifer's condo. The frightened elderly woman living there eventually manages to convince me that she's lived here for over five years now and doesn't know any Jennifer. Okay, I think, in this parallel fucking universe - or whatever the fuck it is - where would Jennifer live if not at her condo?

 

Back in the dream/not dream, I remember visiting the Taylor residence that one time. And, now that I think about it, it makes sense Jenn would still be there. If I wasn't around in Justin's life this time around, adding just that much more to Craig's latent homophobia, Justin probably wouldn't have been kicked out by his dear old dad. No confrontation in the alleyway behind Babylon and Justin would probably have gone on happily living at home with his family and the Taylors wouldn't have gotten that divorce.  

 

So, off to the burbs I go, via the liquor store because I'm starting to lose that nice numbing buzz, which is simply unacceptable. Joe, the cabby - again, his real name is irrelevant since he looks like a 'Joe' to me - is very understanding about driving around aimlessly until I finally recognize the Taylor's house. I mean, depending on how you look at it, it's been either five years since I was there that one time, or else I've never been there at all, so it's understandable that in my inebriated state I have a hard time finding it. But, my buddy the platinum Master Card again works it's charm and Joe is more than happy to drive me around as long as I wish.

 

I finally locate the right street and that little hetero-heaven homestead that Craig & Jenn called home together. I tell Joe to go ahead and take off because I don't have a clue how long I'll be. Then, taking another large swig of courage from my bottle of whiskey, I stumble up the walkway and ring the doorbell.  

 

Fuck! I wasn't expecting that shit-for-brains Craig to answer the door. Deep breath, Kinney. He doesn't recognize you so just play it cool.  

 

"Mr. Taylor, I was wondering if your wife, Jennifer, was available?" I ask, trying not to slur my words too much.

 

"My wife is unavailable. Can I help you, Mr . . . ?" Craig said with only a slightly rude snarl.  

 

"Kinney, Brian Kinney. I'm a friend . . . I was a friend of Justin's. I wanted to come and offer my condolences to Jennifer . . . We're acquaintances . . ." Okay, that was a bit of a lame start, but I'm going with the excuse that I'm drunk - it has nothing to do with the fact that I have no idea what to say to the asshole father of my never-actually-a-lover who's now dead.

 

"I'm sorry, Mr. Kinney. We were up most of last night and my wife is understandably very upset. She's lying down right now. If you care to leave your number, I can have her call you later." Craig said with that condescending attitude of his.  

 

Fuck. I know she's upset. That's why I'm here, you jackass. I'm upset too! I really want to talk to her. I feel like I'm about to really lose it myself. This is too weird and much too real . . . Standing here talking to Craig about HIM. About Justin. Fuck, it's real. Justin really is dead?

 

"Uh. Okay. I'll just go . . ." I stammer as I back away from the door and trip down the walk, crumbling onto the curb.

 

What the fuck am I doing here? Jennifer doesn't know me from Adam. It was just a dream and I never really did all that stuff I seem to remember, right? So, what exactly was I planning on telling Jenn when I saw her anyway? 'Sorry I didn't save your son. I knew he was going to be attacked last night because I dreamed it already happened but in the dream I was there to help him and he didn't die'? Yeah - that sounds completely insane, Kinney.  

 

I pull out my whiskey bottle and just sit and sip, not really having any idea what to do next. I just keep seeing all these images of Justin in my head - I let myself remember every minute we were together, every laugh, every touch, every word, every fuck. I miss him. I've been missing him for months but I hadn't been letting myself think about it. Now, though . . . Now that he's gone and I'll never see him again, never get a chance to make it all up to him, I can no longer stop the memories - the dream images - from flooding my brain.  

 

Damn! The whiskey bottle is empty. I wish I had more. Something inside my chest feels like it's broken. The alcohol seems to help a little with the pain. Apparently, though, not everyone agrees that I should have more booze - that guy over there yelling at me seems to think I've had enough. Oh, it's Craig. Well, fuck him. What do I care what he thinks? I just ignore him and he goes away.

 

These new fuckers though, I don't think they're gonna go away as easily. That short one over there is yellng at me but fuck if I can figure out what he's saying. Those swirling colored lights are really distracting. Why is he shining that flashlight in my eyes? I wish they'd just go away and leave me alone. Oh - I get it now - they're cops. Oops, looks like I kinda passed out on the Taylor's lawn and Craig wasn't too happy about it. And, now these nice police officers are here to help me home.  

 

That's nice. I think I'll just go back to sleep and let them take care of me. Maybe I'll go back to dreaming about Justin.

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<2.>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

“FUCK! That goddamned alarm! Argh! My head is gonna split in two. Where is the alarm?” I yell as the beep, beep, beep keeps stabbing my brain tissues.  

 

“It’s over here, Brian. I’ll get it.” I hear the most beautiful voice in the world saying my name and then, thank the heavens, the alarm is shut off.  

 

I happily roll over onto my left side and wrap my arms around the warm pliant body next to me. I bury my face in his neck and breathe in that sweet, musky scent that is my Sunshine. I feel my entire body relax at the connotations of pleasure that scent always brings.  

 

“Mmmmm, Justin,” I mumble happily before my brain switches on and I suddenly realize that Justin being in my bed is impossible.  

 

“Fuck!” I bolt out of the bed at speeds beyond which even I thought were possible. “NO! No. Nononononono. This is NOT possible. You’re fucking dead. It was in the newspaper. I talked to your fucking father. What the fuck is going on here?”

 

After about two minutes, I realize that I’m standing buck naked at the foot of my bed and screaming at the beautiful blond twink cringing in my bed. He looks a little bit freaked out by my behavior, which isn’t really surprising because I’m acting like a complete lunatic - screaming at him and telling him he’s dead - not really making an impression of overall sanity here!  

 

I try to calm myself down and manage to at least stop screaming at him. I must still look a little freaky though because the boy is huddled up at the head of the bed as far away from me as he can get without leaving the room. I remind myself to breathe and I slowly sit down on the end of the bed. Then, in the calmest voice I can muster with my heart racing at about 1000 miles an hour, I start asking questions.

 

“I didn’t mean to scare you. Can you. . . Can you just tell me. . . What’s your name?” I decide to start with an easy one, I hope.

 

“Justin. I told you that last night, Brian,” he says, looking at me with major amounts of confusion still on his face.  

 

“Okay. Good. When did you meet me?” Still easy, I think.

 

“Last night. Don’t you remember? Are you okay, Brian?” Still with the confusion and now a little bit of fear too.  

 

“Yeah. I remember. But, I just want to make sure what I remember is what you remember,” I start to explain but then stop, because there’s no way to explain what I’m going through without adding to the crazy factor. “How old are you?”

 

“Seventeen. I told you that last night too, Brian. How high were you?” In spite of how easy these questions are, nothing I’m saying is reassuring Justin regarding my sanity.

 

“YES!” I sing out, doing a little victory dance around the bed in all my nakedness. “It’s not too late. It’s not too late!”

 

Justin is eyeing me warily as I do my little dance. I can’t believe my luck. I don’t care what the explanation - if it was another dream, a dream within a dream, quantum time fluctuations, alien life forms or twilight zone television reruns - whatever the reason, all I know is that Justin is alive and I’ve got another chance to make things right.  

 

Fuck my rules. Fuck all that shit I was spouting before about everything bad being because I let the twink into my life. All I know is that JUSTIN IS ALIVE! I have another chance. I’m not going to let him get away this time. This time I’ll do it right - I’ll be there to protect him, I’ll tell him how much I care about him. Fuck - I’ll marry him! Whatever it takes to make him understand that I want to be with him and protect him and I don’t ever want to feel the way I did when I thought he was dead.  

 

“Oh, Justin. I’m so glad you’re here and okay!” I say as I practically throw myself on him. “I thought it was too late. Oh, Justin. Sunshine!”

 

I’m kissing him frantically now. My lips are trying to touch every part of his skin. I kiss his lips and nuzzle at his neck in that one spot right behind his ear that I know gets him every time. God, I  want him so badly - it’s been so long since I’ve had him and I want that perfect ass so bad. I want every part of him and I want to touch and taste and feel every part of him all at once.

 

“Oh, Justin. Justin. God you feel so good. I want you, Sunshine. I need to be inside you. I need to feel you right now.” I’m not even sure what I’m saying anymore since I’m almost frantic with desire for this wonderful, beautiful man that I’ve missed so much for months and months.

 

So, I guess that even though I’m being a little bit too overly emotional, Justin is still interested in whatever I have to offer because his protests slowly turn into moans and then I hear him panting. He is rutting against my thigh as I kiss him hard and deep, trying to get every bit of myself inside him at the same time. I thrust my tongue down his throat as hard and deep as I can. I’m probing at his sweet, tight little hole with eager fingers. I would be balls deep in him too if I could stop all my other activities long enough to find a condom. I never want to stop touching him. My Justin. MINE! I’m never letting him go again!  

 

I grope around on the bed with my one free hand and joyfully find a condom left over from last night - or at least from the last night in this dimension - and I tear it open and roll it on my dick as fast as possible using only one hand. But, before I go ram into that glorious tight deep opening, I have to pause and try to collect myself.  

 

I want to savor this because, for the Brian Kinney that just spent the last nine months trying futilely to convince himself Justin didn't matter only to have reality crash in on him when I thought Justin was dead, this moment is earth shattering. I am here with the one man I love more than I ever thought it was possible. He's alive and I have a second - or maybe this counts as a third - chance to make things right with us. I want to do this right. I want this to be more than just another great fuck. I want to make love to Justin. Only, I've never tried to do that before and it scares the shit out of me.  

 

"Justin, I love you. I know that probably sounds crazy to you, but I thought - maybe it was a dream, I don't know - I thought you were dead, though, and it almost killed me. But, here you are. You're okay. We have time to do this right. And I just need you to know how much you mean to me.” I pour my heart out to this beautiful wonderful man that I now know I can’t live without.

 

Then, I slowly press just the tip of my achingly needy cock into my Sunshine and the soft moan he makes almost starts me crying. As I slide in oh so gradually, I feel that ball of tension that has resided in my gut for the past nine months dissolving and whatever was broken in my chest seems to begin to heal. Yes, this tight, warm embrace, this sweet, caring, talented young man, this is home. I can be whole again.

 

While I want this to be a long, slow, languid session, drawing out the sense of pleasure for Justin, I know after the first thrust that I simply can’t last. It’s been too long. Not that I’ve been at all celibate over the last few months - get real, I am Brian Kinney - but none of those men have been my Sunshine. The feeling of being deep inside this singular boy is too much for me.  

 

And, oh yeah - those mewling, whimpering sounds are me, not Justin.  

 

So, I give up on the slow, long drawn out love making session and just plow the boy’s ass. I’m in and out not more than five or ten times before that drawing in feeling in my balls and my gut tells me that I’m done for. I try valiantly to stop myself, pulling almost all the way out and holding my body still, but then Justin makes just the tiniest little movement with his hips and it’s too much to resist. I surrender to the waves of pleasure inundating my body. I’m convulsing, my muscles all spasming as I feel my cum shooting out into the condom.  

 

Those sobs and the tears, the moans of something between pleasure and utter, utter abandon - those are me too, I’m afraid.

 

“Justin, I love you so much,” I cry into the soft blond hair of my beautiful Sunshine as I collapse onto his perfect, soft body. “I’m so happy you’re back, Sunshine. I love you. I don’t ever want to live without you again.”

 

I know I’m babbling and I’m a teary, blubbering mess - it’s VERY un-kinney-like, but I’m completely out of control by now and once you open the floodgates on all those emotions I’ve been damming up for more than thirty years now there’s absolutely no stopping the deluge. I’m kissing and stroking Justin as I prattle on, still unable to get enough of him. I don’t want to pull out, even though I know I have to soon or I run the risk of losing the condom completely.  

 

Let’s face it, people - I’m a fucking mess!  

 

So, is it any wonder that I’m kinda freaking Justin out again? Not really.  

 

I feel the body beneath me squirming and I finally accept the fact that I need to pull out and roll off him before I crush the boy. Justin never did get off that last time, but he doesn’t seem to be very interested in that anymore. He’s trying to surreptitiously inch away towards the edge of the bed nearest the door.  

 

"Um, well, I better get going now, I guess," Justin says in a forced casual tone as he rapidly gathers up his scattered clothing. "I need to get to school, you know."

 

"Right! School. You need to get to school." I say, wiping at my face as I hop out of bed, following Justin's every movement with my eyes. "You don't need to rush off, Justin. I'll drive you to school like I always do. Let's go get a shower first, though."

 

"Oh, um, that's okay. I'll just take the bus. You don't need to bother Brian. Really,"

 

Justin is almost fully dressed already so I guess we aren't going to get that shower. I start to grab up my own clothes and dress too. I follow Justin out of the bedroom as I awkwardly stuff one leg after another into a random pair of jeans I find.  

 

"No, really, I want to drive you, Sunshine," I say as I come up behind Justin and wrap my arms tightly around him, nibbling at that perfect shell-like ear.  

 

"Actually, you can't," Justin replies as he peels my arms off of him. "Michael has the car since you were too high to drive last night."

 

"Oh, yeah. No matter though, as soon as Mikey gets here to pick me up we'll take you to St. James'."

 

"Brian, how do you know where I go to school?" Justin asks as he turns around, eyeing me suspiciously. "I never told you where I go to school."

 

"Of course you did, Sunshine. I've been there tons of times," I add, not really thinking about what I'm saying in my happiness. "On second thought, though, why don't you blow off school today and we can just hang out. I'll just call up and pretend to be Craig and tell them you're sick or something. Come on, Sunshine, let's just goof off together today."

 

"I never told you my dad's name," Justin insists, backing away from me towards the door, tinges of panic in his voice now, which finally seep into my giddy consciousness.

 

"Sure you did - last night," I try to convince him.  

 

"No, I didn't. I think I'm just going to go now, Brian. Okay," Justin says as he pulls open the loft door and backs out, watching me like he's prepared for me to jump him.

 

"Okay. I could pick you up after school though. We can do something then," I offer.

 

"No! No, that's okay," Justin is saying as he starts down the stairs. "Last night was fun. Thanks. But, um, I'm not looking for more, you know."

 

This is not going well. Justin is NOT supposed to just say goodbye and run away out of my life. Why is this not going right?

 

"Justin," I yell at his retreating back which is already rounding the landing. "When can I see you again? Please, Justin. I can explain. Justin!"

 

It's too late though - the boy has already raced down the stairs and I hear the sound of the front door latching closed. I groan. 'Sunshine, come back'.  

 

 

Chapter 4 - I'm Pretty Sure I'm Not Crazy by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

I'm back! Poor Brian's been having such a rough time of it lately. Opening yourself up emotionally and then not getting the response you thought you'd see is hard for the boy.  And things are bound to get worse before they get better. Sorry. TAG

***************Major Angst Alert*************

 

Chapter 4 - I'm Pretty Sure I'm Not Crazy.

 

So, I'm acting a little crazy. I know it. I know it but I can't seem to stop myself. When the fuck did I become this desperate dick-whipped pussy? I wouldn't be if Justin would stop running away from me, but I guess I freaked him out pretty bad this morning.  

 

When Mikey picks me up, I make him drive with me out to St. James Academy. We get here pretty fast - I hope it's faster than Justin can manage on the bus because I need to talk to him and try to explain. Mikey is whining over in the passenger seat asking again why we're here, but I have no idea how to explain any of this so I just ignore him and eventually he shuts up.  

 

There's Justin. Yes! I tell Mikey to stay put and jog over to my Sunshine who's standing on the front steps talking with Daphne.  

 

"Hey, Daphne. Justin, I'm glad I caught you. I really need to talk to you," I start off, trying to appear calm and not insane.

 

“Excuse me? Do I know you?” Daphne interrupts my attempt to get Justin to listen.

 

“Um . . .” is all I can come up with.  

 

Get it together, Kinney. I am a college graduate. I’m the top ad exec at Ryder. I have a well known reputation among my friends and peers for being witty, in a rather sarcastic way, and even, on occasion, charming. But all I can come up with right now is ‘Um’?

 

The reason behind my lack of eloquence is my realization that I’ve slipped up again and I can tell by that look of concern in Justin’s eyes that he caught my little goof. Of course, from my perspective I’ve known Daphne for more than four years and we are good pals. Daphne’s always liked me and been in my corner, rooting for me to finally get it right with her best friend. However, this Justin just met me last night and I’m not due to meet Daphne for a few more days - at least I don't think so. Since this is my third time living through this particular day, I’m no longer sure exactly what is ‘real’ and what isn’t anymore. Neither am I sure what is ‘supposed’ to happen. But, I can tell from Daphne’s and Justin’s expressions that they don’t think I should know Daphne yet.  

 

“Daph, we better get to class,” Justin says, tugging on Daphne’s sleeve to pull her away from me. “Uh, later, Brian.”

 

“Justin, please stop for just a second,” I’m pleading but he’s already more than halfway to the front doors and not looking back.

 

I walk dejectedly back to Mikey at the Jeep. I’m afraid that I’m really screwing this up. AGAIN. I have to figure out how to fix this because I know I’m not strong enough to deal with losing Justin again.  

 

“Brian, can you please tell me what the hell we’re doing here?” Michael asks me again. “Why are you following that kid, Justin, around like this? It’s bad enough you brought him to the hospital last night, but why are we at his school? This is really NOT like you Brian.”

 

I get in the Jeep, grip the steering wheel with both hands and rest my head on my hands. I'm still suffering from last night's hangover - or should I say next May's hangover? My head is pounding and I have that queasy feeling in my gut. But by far the worst thing I'm feeling is the fear that I've scared Justin off for good.

 

"So, Mikey," I ask, trying to figure out what's happening to me, "if you could do over one day in your life, what day would it be?"

 

"Huh? Why?" Michael responds so eloquently.

 

"I mean, if you could do just one day of your life over, would you pick the best day of your life, the worst day or some other random day?"

 

"I guess I'd want to relive the best day of my life, then. I mean who wants to relive their worst day? Wasn't it bad enough the first time around?" Michael reasoned.

 

"See, Mikey, that's where I think you're wrong. I'm with you up to a point - I wouldn't want to relive the worst day of my life. Like you said, it was probably bad enough the first time around. Plus, the way I look at it, anyone's worst day has to have been just so bad and for so many different reasons that even if you tried to redo it, it probably wouldn't get substantially better anyway. "

 

"But I wouldn't want to relive the best day of my life either. What if you were reliving it and did one tiny little thing different and somehow changed it? One little mistake could ruin that perfect day. And you might not even think that what you did - that one change - was all that bad, but it could still ruin everything.

 

"That's why I think it would have to be just an average day. Chances are you could actually make a change to an average day that would make a difference. Of course, you could really screw that day up - and it might turn into your worst day. But maybe you could make it better too. The trick is figuring out exactly what little change will make it turn out the way you want - that's not so easy, you know . . ."

 

"That's real interesting and all, Bri. I'm sure I read a comic once like that. But, um, Brian why are we still sitting here in front of the twink's school discussing this shit? I've gotta get to work," Michael groused.

 

"Because, Mikey, it's all tied together. You, me, the psychopath kids who spray painted 'Faggot' on the Jeep, Justin - we're all tied together and you change just one little thing and *poof* . . ."

 

"Yeah . . . Okay, Bri. Isn't it a bit early in the day for doing drugs? What are you on? You better let me drive." Michael starts to push me out of the driver's seat.  

 

"I'm not stoned, Michael, just scared," I tell my best friend - the ONLY person I would ever admit something like that to - then I add, under my breath, "I'm fucking scared shitless that I'm going to screw this up. Again."

 

I can tell my visit to Philosophy 101 is making Michael a little annoyed. If I keep prattling on Michael is going to insist I'm high and refuse to let me drive. So I give up the deep introspection thing for the time being and take Michael to the Big Q - well, not all the way to the store, because he refuses to have me drop him at the actual store in a Jeep with the word 'Faggot' painted on the side, so I drop him off about five blocks away instead. Then I drop the car off at the body shop near work and stroll into the office only twenty minutes late for the Diverson Account meeting.

 

Instead of getting any real work done, though, I spend most of my day planning how I'm going to convince Justin that I'm not a complete nutcase - which is what I'm afraid he thinks after my performance this morning.  

 

I take off from work early and drive back to the burbs, park in my usual spot in front of Justin's school, and wait for him to emerge from the building. Right on time, the final bell rings at 3:45 pm. The uniform clad preppies start boiling out almost immediately. Then my heart skips a beat when I see that golden mop top that I've been waiting for. I quickly hop out of the car and intercept Justin and Daphne on their way down the front stairs.  

 

"Brian? What are you doing here? Again?" Justin demands, still with a little fear but more with a hint of anger in his tone now.

 

"Justin, please don't run away from me again. I just want to talk to you. Okay? Please." I'm begging here - not only is Brian Kinney going after someone, but I'm begging him to 'talk' to me - what is this world coming to?

 

"I don't know, Brian . . ." Justin is so uncertain, he looks at Daphne for guidance and I could kiss her when she shrugs her shoulders giving Justin the go ahead. "Okay, fine."

 

"Thanks. We could go get a coffee or something to eat," I offer - food is always a good place to start with this kid.

 

I can already see he's contemplating backing out again, so I quickly add, "you're welcome to come too, Daphne."

 

"Okay, sure. There's a coffee shop just a couple blocks over. Is that good?" Justin offers.

 

"Of course," I just barely stop myself from answering that of course, I know the shop he's referring to since we almost always stop there for coffees in the mornings when I drop him off for school. "That sounds great. Hop in, I'll drive."

 

After an awkward silent ride, made bearable only by the fact that it's so short, we all pile out at 'The Human Bean'. I offer to get everyone's drinks and send the teens off to find a table. I finally locate them, a trayful of hot drinks and snacks in my hands, and sit in the chair next to Sunshine.  

 

"Mocha - for you Daphne. Justin here's your cappuccino, two sugars. And I got scones, some chocolate chip cookies and a chocolate muffin for you, Daphne. Everybody happy?" I ask as I hand around drinks and food.  

 

Shit, what did I do wrong this time? They're giving me those looks again. How could I screw up just ordering drinks?

 

"Brian, how did you know our favorite drink orders?" Daphne asks, getting right to the point the way she always does. "Jus filled me in a little today about the two of you. So, what's bugging both of us is how you seem to know so much, not just about Justin, but about me too - I mean, I didn’t sleep with you, so how do you know my name and favorite coffee drink, and even that I always get a chocolate muffin when we come here? This is beyond creepy - this is borderline stalker. So, start talking or Justin and I are out of here!"

 

What do I say to that? I do know that neither of these two believe in psychics or reincarnation or any of that other new age shit - which normally I would applaud - but how else can I explain what's happening to me? The 'dream' thing? This is way more than some freaky dream. I have no fucking idea what it is, but it isn't just a dream. That seems like my best shot, though.

 

"I know this is gonna sound a bit . . . weird . . . but you see, I had some sort of dream or vision or some fucking thing," this is already not going well, I can tell from their sidelong glances at each other. "Um, Justin, I dreamed that we were a couple for several years. Somehow, in that dream I saw stuff that I can't explain - like how I know where you go to school and your Dad's name. Even I think this all sounds like bullshit - I know - but it's the best explanation I've got for now."

 

"Then, it was like the dream changed and I saw it all happening again only this time you and I weren't together, and that time around you got hurt - killed, rather - and I felt like it was sorta my fault that second time because I wasn't there for you. So, when I woke up this morning and saw you there I was so happy to see you - and know you weren't dead - I got a little nuts. I really didn't mean to freak you out. I just want another chance to make things right with you."

 

Okay, that didn't sound too desperate or crazy, right? I stop talking at this point and watch Justin as a slew of conflicting emotions run rampant across his face. Disbelief, unfortunately, seems to be the dominant emotion there. All I can do is wait to see what he says.

 

"What do you mean I got killed? You said that this morning, too. That freaked me out more than anything else, I gotta admit," Justin asks, reserving judgment as to my sanity until I answer him this one big question.

 

"You're attacked at your Prom by Chris Hobbs. He bashes you in the head with a baseball bat because you're gay," I state, bluntly.  

 

"Chris Hobbs?" Justin asks, looking back and forth between me and Daphne with an expression I can't read.  

 

"Yeah - Hobbs - Hot brainless jock type. You know, the guy you've been crushing on for years? So, he finds out you're gay, and after you make a couple advances on him, he gets all homophobic on you and after Prom he . . . " I stop at this point, since Justin jumps up to his feet and grabs his backpack and backs away from me. "Justin, wait, what is it? What did I say wrong this time," I'm pleading as I follow him, Daphne in our wake.

 

"You CAN'T know about that. Nobody knows about Chris - I haven't even told Daph about . . . I don't know how you know all this shit, and I don't really care, either. All I do know is that this is too fucking nuts. I don't believe you - nothing you say makes any sense, logically. So just leave me the fuck alone, okay? Thanks for last night, whatever, but just leave me be now. Let's go, Daph," Justin was pulling his friend after him out of the coffee shop as he spoke.

 

"Justin. Don't. Please, I can't do this again without you," I'm shouting as I run after Justin. "I love you, Justin. I can't do this, again . . . "

 

I watch him go. I can't stop him. I would never try to keep someone - anyone, let alone someone I truly care about - from doing what they want. But watching him go is tearing out my heart. I told him I loved him - in front of all these people, even - and he's just going to walk away?  

 

Now what do I do?  

 

I wait. I watch for my chance. The first time around I used to kid that Justin was my 'stalker'. Now I'm the stalker. Only it's not a joke this time - I really am becoming a stalker.

 

I can't let him go. I wasn't kidding before when I said I couldn't do this without him. I can't sleep. I've lost weight - and not in a good way. I have nightmares about the Prom and the bashing. Obsess much, Kinney? I just can't get over the idea that it's all gonna happen again if I'm not there with Justin that night.  

 

Even worse, I worry about what might happen to him all the other times I'm not there. What if this time through I've changed something so that Justin gets hurt sometime other than at Prom. Since I warned him about Hobbs, what if someone else - some other jock or homophobe - comes after him. It could happen ANY time at all. It could be ANY one.  

 

I start to follow him at odd times - after school, weekends. I even sit in my car outside his house sometimes. I just can't get the picture of him lying in a pool of blood out of my head. I have to be there to help him this time. I just have to.

 

I think I'm being subtle. I try to be surreptitious - I don't want him to know how ridiculous I'm being. I've even taken to renting cars sometimes since I know my Jeep is pretty ostentatious and would stand out too much.

 

I know I'm not doing a great job at tailing him covertly though - I've caught his eye too many times in places where I really shouldn't be - libraries, on the street, even in that suburban Hell known as 'The Mall'. I simply have to see his face sometimes. Seeing him from afar isn't always enough. So, I'm pretty sure Justin knows I'm following him now. He never acknowledges me though.  

 

God what I wouldn't give to be able to hold him in my arms. But, I can't let myself even think about that - it just hurts too much. Seeing him, watching him has to be enough. For now at least - I'm not giving up on getting him back. Not yet.

 

Mikey and the guys have slowly given up on me. It's been months now since I've been out to a bar or a club with them. I'm glad they gave up because I ran out of excuses for why I couldn't join them a long time ago. So far I've been able to keep the real reason why I'm not out drinking with them private - if I hadn't, I have no doubt that Mikey or Deb would have me seeing a shrink by now, if not committed altogether.   

 

The closer it gets to spring, the worse I get. Prom is in May.  

 

By March I'm pretty much a complete fucked up basket case. I can't sleep at all anymore. I look like a zombie. I can't concentrate at work anymore and I've actually screwed up a couple campaign presentations. Ryder has been riding my ass a lot lately - threats have been issued even. Fuck him - all the years I've been working for him up till now I've been his best ad exc. He can cut me some slack now, for fuck's sake.  

 

The last week of March is Justin's spring break. He'll be out of school the whole week. I start to panic a little thinking about all that time he'll have to just wander around where heaven knows who could be lurking, waiting to take him down. What can I do?

 

That Monday, I'm a wreck thinking about him all day at work. I leave at lunchtime and drive out to the burbs to his house. I don't know if he's there or not, though. I'm just sitting in my Jeep, parked across the street from his house trying to decide what I should do, when I see Craig drive up and pull his car into the garage.  

 

About fifteen minutes later, I'm still sitting there watching the house, without a clue what I'm gonna do next - I only know that I need to see Justin to know he's all right, and then I can go - when Craig comes out of the house, down the walk and approaches my car. Shit! What the fuck does he want?  

 

"Can I help you with something, buddy?" Craig barks, ever the polite asshole. "You've been out here a while, according to my wife, just staring up at our house. If you don't have any business here, then I think it's time for you to move along."

 

I've always detested Craig. Maybe it's because the first time I met the guy he rammed my Jeep with his car and then the next night sucker punched me and tried to break my ribs. Maybe it's just that attitude of supreme entitlement and the way he always seems to be talking down to everyone. Whatever the reason, today is really not the day to fuck with me. I've had like 5 hours of sleep total over the past three or four days, my nerves are on edge and I'm just itching for someone - anyone - to take out my frustrations on. And, lucky Craig, he just happened to be the one available.

 

"This is a public street, isn't it? I'm not breaking any laws by parking here. So, BUDDY, why don't you fuck off and leave me alone," I bark back at him, doing my best Jack Kinney imitation.  

 

"I don't think so, you creep. I don't care what you're doing here, anymore. I want you to get the fuck out of my neighborhood. NOW!" Craig spits back at me.  

 

"Fuck you, Craig!" I'm yelling now at a fairly loud decibel range, as I shove open the Jeep door, conveniently knocking it into Craig's thigh. "I'll leave when I fucking feel like it."

 

"You'll fucking leave now, asshole," Craig says as he grabs ahold of the lapels of my suit and tries to drive me back into the driver's seat.

 

"Get your fucking hands off me, Craig," I snarl at him, glaring with hatred and frustration.

 

After twenty seconds, Craig's hands are still wrapped around my suit and I simply lose it. Unconsciously channeling dear old Jack, I just let loose and watch as my fist makes contact with Craig's jaw. It's an absolutely perfect punch - Jack would've been so proud - although I'm horrified at what I'm doing. Craig's eyes roll back into his head and he crumples gracefully to the ground.  

 

I'm standing there amazed at what I've just done and I don't even notice at first all the noise and fuss my actions have garnered. Justin's voice calling my name is what finally snaps me out of my daze.  

 

"Brian! What the fuck are you doing?" Sunshine is yelling at me and pulling me away from where his Dad is starting to come to.  

 

"Craig. Oh my God! Craig, honey, wake up." Jennifer kneels next to her fallen husband, stroking his cheek and trying to help him sit up.

 

"Sorry, Sunshine. Your Dad just pissed me off," I try to explain, happy to be touching and talking to Justin after so long.  

 

In fact, it was taking everything I had not to wrap my arms around him right now. I was close enough to smell him now. God the aroma was going straight to my cock. And he was holding my arm. I move my other hand up to cover his. The feel of his bare skin is so amazingly satisfying. I am completely distracted from everything else around me.

 

Too late, I realize that Craig has recovered enough to stand. He taps my shoulder, causing me to turn around. That's when he slugs me in the gut so hard I double over, providing him with a perfect target for an uppercut to my chin. The second punch knocks me to my ass. Craig immediately follows through with a couple of well placed kicks to my gut and ribs. Justin is now pulling his Dad off me.  

 

By now, one of the other fine upstanding residents of suburbia has called the cops, who rush to the protection of all things WASPish & beautiful. How is it that even in my Armani suit, which probably cost more than Craig's monthly house payment - regardless of how wrinkled it now is - the police instinctively know I am the one who doesn't belong here? Do I have 'Irish White Trash Fag' written across my forehead in some invisible ink only suburban cops can read?

 

Well, whatever it was, the cops focus all their attention on me and roughly tow me toward the patrol car before I even get a word in to defend myself. I'm locked in the backseat while the officers take Craig and Jenn's statements. All I can do is stare out the window, watching Justin who's looking back at me sadly. I wish I could tell if he's sad for me or because of me. But at least I was able to see and touch him for that short time and I know, at least for now, he's fine.

 

 

Chapter 5 - No Way Out by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

 

One more angst ridden chapter - sorry. I promise though that things are bound to get better after this. Brian is pretty much hitting rock bottom here - There's no place to go but up, right? TAG

*******Major Angst Alert (With a little smut thrown in for good Measure) *******

 

 

 

Chapter 5 - No Way Out.

 

The cops return to the car after about twenty minutes. They don't ask me any questions - my side of the story is irrelevant, obviously - they just read me my rights as we drive away. Justin is still looking after me as the patrol car rounds the corner at the end of his block. The last thing I see is that loathsome Craig yelling at my Sunshine, pointing towards me in the retreating police car, with an ugly bitter sneer on his face.  

 

At the station I’m informed that Craig is pressing charges against me for assault. Okay, I guess I did throw the first punch, but he got more than a few of his own licks in too. Pressing charges against me is just adding insult to injury. But, whatever - when was life ever fair - I know where I stand in the eyes of these cops and that I won't rate any special treatment around here.

 

By the time I post my bail and get out of there it’s after 6:00 pm. I clearly hadn't made it back to work and I really hadn't told anyone where I was going when I left. It seems that my absence was noted pretty quickly when I didn't show for a meeting with one of Ryder's biggest clients at 3:30. Believe me, Ryder gives me an earful about that the next morning when I finally do make it back to the office after another sleepless night.  

 

Even then I probably could eventually placate Ryder if only it hadn't been for Craig Taylor's overactive sense of revenge. See, I’m just leaving Ryder's office after my little disciplinary talk, when a burly looking black guy pushes past the receptionist as I walk into the lobby. The guy looks at me with such outrage and hatred on his face it’s almost palpable, even if I don't know what I've done to deserve it.

 

"Brian Kinney?" the guy asks.

 

"Yeah. What's it to you?" I snarl right back.

 

"You've been served, you fucking pervert," he says thrusting a wad of papers into my chest.  

 

"What the fuck? What the hell is all this," I demand, gazing in confusion at the documents I'm holding.

 

"It's a Restraining Order and a Stalking Prevention Order against you, preventing you from coming near that kid you molested. Goddamned fucking pervert. I hope you fucking burn in Hell for this, you bastard." The black guy spits out, looking at me like a piece of dog turd he's accidentally stepped in, then he turns on his heel and stomps out the door.  

 

To say I’m stunned would be an understatement. I look briefly at the papers crumpled in my fist, but don't have time to try and make sense of them. Unluckily for me, my Boss, along with more than half of the agency, has witnessed this little exchange.  

 

"That's it, Kinney!" Ryder fumes at me. "You've caused enough trouble around here lately. Your work has sucked and you take off all the time, missing important meetings, without a good reason. Now it seems one of the reasons is that you've been out stalking some kid? Fuck this. You're fired. Get your ass out of here immediately. I don't wanna see you back here EVER!"

 

Ryder then turns to Dorothy at the reception desk and tells her to call building security to have me escorted out. I’m paralyzed momentarily by all the emotions rushing through me - rage, fear, disbelief, confusion and panic. I’m still standing there in a daze when two security guys come up and, gripping me by the upper arms, lead me to the elevator, out through the main building lobby, and then through the front doors onto the sidewalk.  

 

I don’t even have time to get my briefcase or keys. I slump down on a bench in front of the building and take several deep breaths until I have my anger and panic under control. Then I pull out my cell phone and call my former assistant, Cynthia, who brings my personal property - keys, briefcase, personal files, my spare suits and other clothes - down to me, smiling her sympathetic smile at me and assuring me it'll all work out.  

 

Oh yeah - how the hell is this all going to work out? Hmm? I’ve lost Justin - he’s sure I’m a complete nut by now and to top it all off I’ve attacked his father. He’s never going to come near me again. I’m facing a buttload of criminal, and now civil, charges which means I’ll need to hire an attorney, and we all know how fair the legal system is when a fag is the defendant. I’ve lost my job, to boot, which means I have no way to pay for all the legal help I’m gonna need. And, probably worst of all, I can’t do anything to help protect Justin with a fucking restraining order against me - I might as well just go out and buy Hobbs that baseball bat he’s gonna need for all the good I can do now.  

 

Since I have nothing better to do right now, I sit and read through the Restraining Order and Stalking Prevention Order documents which I’m still holding. The affidavit sworn by Craig, which is attached to the Restraining Order, gives a watered down version of how Justin and I met - without the part about me taking him home and fucking his brains out for the night - which means that my little scene at his house has probably outed Justin to his parents. Great! Another thing I’ve fucked up for him. That must have been what Craig was yelling at him about as the police drove me away yesterday. I hope that Justin is okay and that Craig isn’t being the total asshole to him that I know he can be. Of course, I can’t go see him or call him or take any other action to contact him to find out if he’s okay or not thanks to the lovely legal docs I hold in my hands.  

 

How did I get to this place, again? I thought that this time around I would do things differently and I would be able to keep Justin. Instead I just scared him away. Face it - even I’m starting to think I’m crazy, why wouldn’t he. Why is this happening to me? Maybe I really am delusional. I can’t be reliving the same year over and over again, can I?

 

Shit, I need a drink - or ten!

 

Back at the loft I break open a brand new bottle of Beam and carry it over to the couch where I also break out my stash of pot. I’m planning on getting so wasted that I can’t feel anything - that should solve all my problems, right? *Ha ha* We all know how well that type of pain management works. But I’m short of options here so numbing the pain is the best I can come up with for now.  

 

Unfortunately, this doesn’t appear to be working this time. The more drunk and stoned I get the sadder I feel. Is it possible that I’ve fucked up worse this time around than I did last time. At least when I stayed out of Justin’s life, he wasn’t outed to his father and his life was likely more stable and happier - at least up until Prom.  

 

Now? I can just see Craig breaking him down again - the way he did that first time I remember. Justin was so fucking hurt by Craig’s betrayal. I think it was worse for him than for me as a kid. Both of us had to deal with parents that disapproved of us, but with Jack and Joan I never had any expectations that they would love or understand me. With Justin it was different. Up until the day Craig found out Justin was gay, he was a doting, loving proud father. Then, in a matter of minutes, he changed completely and became this hateful, denegrating monster who could abandon his son simply because Justin was gay. And I just set Justin up for this wonderful experience. AGAIN. So, who’s the bigger asshole - Craig or me?

 

Apparently I can’t do anything right. Why the fuck do I even try? Why the fuck am I still trying? I can’t stop Hobbs - I can’t even go within 500 feet of Justin according to the Restraining Order. Maybe my being there would just make things worse anyway - look what just happened with Craig.

 

I hate what I’ve become. This sniveling waste of space. I’ve fucked up the only relationship that ever really meant anything to me and no matter what I do I just keep making it worse. And there is NOTHING I can do to stop Justin from getting hurt again.  

 

The images of Justin lying on the ground of that parking garage in a spreading pool of blood, his face more than just normally pale, how cold his skin felt, how hopeless and useless I felt - all these thoughts are pressing down on me. I CAN’T go through this again. I CAN’T. I WON’T.

 

I won’t go through this again - watching or even just hearing about Justin getting hurt, maybe killed, is just too painful to even think about. I won’t be living through it again. No fucking way. And, since I’ve always sort of had this particular contingency plan in the back of my brain for just such an occasion, I decide it’s time for ‘Operation James Dean’. Go out in a blaze of glory, forever young and beautiful and no longer having to deal with any of the shit that life keeps throwing at you - that’s always been my plan.  

 

I don’t have a white silk scarf this time - I haven’t gotten around to buying that yet this time around - but I do have a lovely cashmere scarf that is almost as elegant. This time I’m not going to bother with the romantic shit like the candles and the music, either. I remember exactly how to get the scarf over the beam and precisely which chair I need to use to get the height right. I down the remains of the bottle of Beam and finish off the joint I’m halfway through and then climb up on the chair.  

 

Oh yeah! I can already tell this is going to be one fantastic orgasm. That first time around I never really finished thanks to Mikey’s interference, but that’s not going to happen this time. This time I’m going to get to enjoy the full effect of scarfing. It feels so amazing already. I see Justin there right in front of me. God, he’s still so beautiful. I can picture his face with that sunshine smile gazing at me with so much love it hurts my heart. And if I just tweak my imagination a smidgen, then I can feel his hands on me jerking me off.  

 

“Oh, God, yes! I’m cuming, Justin. I love you. I’m coming for you!” I hear myself shouting as my vision starts to go black and the room seems to spin around me faster and faster, then I let go of all my troubles in a mind-bending orgasm.

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<3.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

*Beep, beep, beep, beep* The fucking alarm is going off. Again.  

 

Shit - it didn’t work. I thought I would be dead by now and I wouldn’t have to deal with this anymore. I wonder how the fuck I got back to bed? Mikey again, probably. My head is pounding from the amount of Beam I drank last night and I just wish I could sink down into the mattress and disappear. I wonder briefly how long the alarm will continue to beep like that if I don’t roll over and shut it off - will it do that all day or does it shut itself off after a certain period of time. I’ve never let it go on long enough to find out. Maybe I will today.  

 

But, just as I’m wondering this, someone else turns the alarm off. Probably Mikey, I think. I really didn’t plan on having to deal with a morning after this time so I’m having trouble convincing myself that opening my eyes is worth the trouble. I don’t have the strength to deal with today. And I’m out of pot and Beam so another scarfing attempt is probably out, at least until I can make a trip to the liquor store and to meet Anita. I finally decide not to ever bother opening my eyes again and hope that if I lay here long enough I’ll die of thirst or starvation or something after all. Whatever it takes so that I don’t have to face another shitty day.

 

“Brian? Your alarm went off. I assume that means you need to get up,” Justin’s voice sings into my ear as he rolls to wrap his left arm around my chest and leans his head against my shoulder.  

 

“No. Fuck, no. Not again,” I whine quietly, feeling like tears are already starting to leak out through the corners of my tightly closed eyelids. “Please, don’t make me do this again.”

 

“What’s wrong, Brian?” Justin sounds concerned, he probably looks concerned too, but I haven’t yet braved an attempt to open my eyes and look at him.

 

“I can’t do this again. I CAN’T. Why is this happening?” I’m asking in a hushed voice, not really directing my questions to anyone in particular, just the universe at large, since I’m pretty sure no one is listening anyway.

 

“I don’t understand, Brian,” Justin says, his soft lips brushing against my jaw as he speaks and eliciting an unwilling groan from me. “What can’t you do? From what I saw last night, it would seem you can do anything you want. *he he he*”

 

I have to do it. I can’t resist seeing him again, in my bed, all beautiful after a night of passionate fucking. I open my eyes and see him there, propped up on one elbow and looking down into my face with an adorable, impish glint in his eyes. Then he swoops down and kisses my lips, deep and hot and wet, his mouth open and his tongue seeking entry to my own mouth. I remember what a fast learner he always has been and how eager he always is to try something new. Not to mention that he’s a natural at kissing and sucking and pretty much anything else having to do with those succulent, juicy lips. So, even though I know this can’t be, I don’t even try to resist as Justin’s kisses deepen and his hands start to wander over my body with definite lascivious purposes.  

 

In spite of the hangover, I’ve still woken up with my usual morning wood, which Justin discovers as soon as his hands venture far enough south. He seems downright gleeful at his discovery - like it’s a miracle or something to wake up with a hard on? And, with all the enthusiasm and teenage spunk he can muster, he dives under the covers to begin using those newly awakened sucking skills.  

 

Justin starts out with licking - attacking my cock like it’s a popsicle at the height of summer and he’s a kid worried his treat will melt. He licks at my hardened shaft, stroking it with his tongue from the base to the tip over and over. God it feels wonderful. Then, the talented youth tongues at my slit for a moment or two, making little ‘yummy’ sounds at the taste of the precum he samples there. But, when he finally sucks in the entire head and begins swirling his tongue around the head as he sucks and bobs his head up and down rhythmically, I let out a moan like you wouldn’t believe. He’s so fucking talented - and I’m not talking only about his painting.  

 

My dick hasn’t had this much attention in months - well, it’s been months in my fucked up repeating timeline - so it’s no surprise that I only last about five minutes. That tingle in my balls and the drawing in feeling in my gut mean only one thing - I’m shooting into that gorgeous mouth, spurt after spurt of cum that the boy just laps up as if it was the finest ambrosia. He licks me clean in no time and then his head pops up from under the covers with such a beautiful, smug grin on those coral pink lips that I almost giggle when I see it. I manage to control my laughter only by towing him close enough to kiss, loving the intimate taste of my cum on his tongue and lips.

 

“Justin,” I moan. “You are fucking amazing, you know that?”

 

He positively glows at the compliment - I mean he literally glows, his pale ivory skin shining from the inside somehow.  

 

“I guess I just learned from the best, is all,” Justin says, smiling his sunshine smile back at me and melting my heart a little bit more. Then, looking at the clock briefly, he adds, “mind if I use your shower, Brian. I need to get going or I’ll be late for school.”

 

“Go ahead, Sunshine,” I gesture to the doorway as he crawls over me to get out of bed, leaving several light, tempting kisses on my chest as he goes.  

 

I’m still lying in bed when I hear the sound of the water in the shower starting and then Justin yelps a little, obviously getting into the shower before he adjusted the water enough. That little yelp is enough to pull me out of bed, even though I know this entire morning is futile. It simply won’t end well. I’ve already done this three times before and I KNOW it won’t end well, but I can’t resist him. I can’t and I don’t want to, so I follow the noises from the other room and end up in the shower stroking that slender, taut, twink body with the bar of soap.  

 

Justin is rambling on, in his special way, talking about Gus and the visit to the hospital last night, but all I can think about is that smooth, silky skin that my hands are gliding over and then the soft, golden locks that I’m shampooing. I wish I never had to leave this shower. I’m already so hard again that I know I can’t resist having him again, even though I know it will just make what I have to do later that much harder.

 

“You up for another round, Sunshine?” I ask and, as he smiles his acceptance, I spin his body around and push him against the glass shower surround, taking him again in the shower.

 

Mikey walks into the loft just as I’m tucking Justin away into his briefs. Justin is such an amazing young man, I wish that I could keep him. But, my time with him today is almost up and I know that there won’t be anything else after today. He’s so fun and eager right now, so open to anything I might suggest. I almost give in to my secret desires and ask him to stay for the rest of the day. But. . . .  well, it’s just not possible for me to stay this happy and I don’t plan to wait again till it all falls apart. This time I’ll make sure.  

 

With Justin finally dressed, I allow Mikey to shepherd us out of the loft and down to the Jeep. The ‘Faggot’ spray painting on the side doesn’t even phase me - I’m so used to it by now - and I just get in the car without even pausing.

 

“Aren’t you going to say anything?” Mikey asks, waiting on the curb for the reaming he thinks is coming for letting my Jeep get vandalized.  

 

“No. Get in. We have to take the boy to school, Mikey.” I direct him, as Justin hops over the side and into the back without any direction.  

 

We scream down the side street next to St. James Academy, almost running over a couple of unsuspecting students who aren’t quite fast enough getting out of the way of the Jeep. I’m in a bit of a hurry, unfortunately, since I still have to get back to downtown and drop Michael off at his work. I have plans and I can’t be late this morning. So, the slug-like students will have to scurry to get out of my way - fuck if I care about their goody-two-shoes asses.  

 

I’m wary about kissing Justin goodbye in front of his schoolmates, even though that is all I want to do right now. I settle for just touching his cheek briefly and telling him ‘Later’, before I jump back into the Jeep and peel out of there as fast as I can. Mikey’s in a talkative mood as we drive away, but I just want to remember the image of Justin standing in the street and smiling at me as I drive away so I don’t bother listening to Michael’s little soliloquy.  

 

As soon as I drop Mikey off - as close to his work as he’ll let me get him in the ‘Faggot-mobile’ - I head back to Liberty Avenue. It’s still only ten till 9:00, so I have time. I shuffle into the Diner and seat myself at the counter and ask Deb for a coffee to drink while I kill time. I hand off the photos from the hospital that Michael took to Debbie as I savor my coffee so ‘Gramma’ can gloat over her new grandbaby. I’m not really listening to the drivel she’s babbling at me - Gus is adorable, I agree, but my mind is still focused on this perfect morning I’ve just experienced with the most perfect man I’ll ever know. I’m sorry for Gus, but I can’t help it - I have to do this, I just know that I can’t do this year over again, no matter how it’s going to play out.  

 

At exactly 9:38 I take a twenty out of my wallet and leave it on the counter to pay for my coffee and a nice little tip for Debbie and head out of the diner. I only glance at my watch once more as soon as I reach the sidewalk in front of the building. Noting that it is precisely 9:40 am, I look to my left and see the reliable #22 City Bus plowing down the street right on time.  

 

While most of the public transportation in the City of Pittsburgh is not exactly what you would call reliable, the #22 is almost always on time - something I’ve noted many times as I’ve left the Diner after breakfast on my way to work. And, it doesn’t disappoint today. I smile a quiet little smile, thinking again about the perfect morning as I step off the curb directly in front of the speeding bus.

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<4.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

*Beep, beep, beep, beep. . . .* “Well,” I think, disappointed but trying to deal with the situation which I obviously have no control over, “at least I don’t have a hangover this time around.”

 

 

Chapter 6 - I’m Pretty Sure I AM Crazy - Why Won’t They Believe Me? by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

 

As promised, a little less angst and a little more fun here.  I'm sorry that no one seemed to understand the end of my last chapter - I've tried to explain it more through this chapter where Brian talks to the psychiatrist at the hospital. Hope this explains things a bit for all of you.  Hope you all enjoy and, as always, thank you sooooooo much for reading and for all your reviews.  TAG

 

 

 

Chapter 6 - I’m Pretty Sure I AM Crazy - Why Won’t They Believe Me?

 

I roll to my left side and smile at Justin who is looking at me with those adorable sapphire blue eyes. Every single time I see him I'm amazed at this boy's beauty. How does he do that? I lean forward to kiss those popsicle pink lips, still slightly swollen from all the fun he had last night. His mouth tastes so sweet.  

 

"Good morning, Sunshine," I say, a small smile on my own lips. "Can you make it to school today on your own? I've got somewhere I've got to go."

 

"Sure, Brian," the blond twink responds, agreeably. "I planned to take the bus home anyway."

 

"Good. Take your time. The shower is through there," I gesture to the bathroom door. "And, please be safe."

 

"Huh?" came the anticipated Twinkie reply.

 

"You. Be safe. Don't get hurt, you know," I start to explain, but stop myself, knowing where this will probably lead and not wanting to go there. I have to add one more thing though, "Hey, Sunshine, do me one favor, please. Stay far away from Chris Hobbs."

 

He's still staring at me from the bed with that weirded out expression as I get out of bed, pull on a pair of jeans that I find lying on the floor next to the bed and a long-sleeved cotton tee. I bend over and leave one more kiss on those delectable sweet lips, I stroke his soft, slightly stubbled cheek with one finger and then I pull away reluctantly, heading for the loft door.

 

“Goodbye, Sunshine,” I whisper as I slide the door closed behind me.

 

Twenty minutes later I’m standing at the admissions desk at Allegheny General Hospital trying to explain to an obtuse twenty year old why I’m insane and need to be admitted to the hospital’s psych ward. Strangely enough, apparently you can’t just show up at the hospital, declare you are insane and get help.  

 

It seems that people who think they are insane are often just crazy and therefore not really in need of medical help? This girl keeps trying to explain to me over and over again that if I KNOW I’m insane, then I couldn’t possibly be crazy enough to be here. I feel like I’m living in that old WWII novel - ‘Catch 22’. If you are sane enough to know you’re crazy then you’re not insane enough for help - that appears to be the bottom line here. But, the girl at least decides to cover her butt enough to send me down to the ER and request a psych eval for me. I’m willing to be compliant - at least for now - so I follow directions and head for the ER.

 

I’m met at the ER by an elderly man dressed in a white lab coat with a pair of brown polyester slacks, a blue button down shirt and a striped brown and yellow rayon tie underneath. This guy looks like he’s based his hairstyle on one of Einstein’s worse hair-days, one where using a comb was only optional. Between the wild graying hair and the ragged untrimmed goatee, I’m not sure if this guy is a psychiatrist or a patient. But who am I to comment - I’m the one trying to get myself committed here so I shouldn’t be so judgmental.

 

‘Son-of-Freud’ here takes me into a small cubicle area near the rear of the ER and seats me in a chair while talking to me with soothing quiet words. He opens up a file folder and pulls a pen out of his pocket and starts asking me a series of questions - all of which are incredibly personal and very annoying. I’m still trying to be cooperative here, though, so I try to rein in my temper and let Freud ask me whatever he thinks is necessary.

 

“So, Mr. Kinney,” he finally asks after he’s gone through his checklist and closed his folder. “What makes you think you need medical attention for your mental health?”

 

“I’m definitely going crazy.” I state emphatically.

 

“I’m not sure I see that,” Freud says, still in that placating tone of voice, trying not to anger the potentially crazy man. “You were able to answer all of my questions about current events. Your cognitive abilities seem intact - you are able to perform simple math and logic calculations as well as complete abstract thought processes. I see no evidence of dementia or memory loss. I do feel that you are emotionally unstable, but that would seem to be more due to depression, which can be treated without having you admitted to the hospital. So, exactly why do you think you need to be here?”

 

“Because I’m living the same year over and over again and I can’t get it right, somehow.” I’m telling him this with a completely straight face but he doesn’t even blink. “No matter what I do I keep waking up in the same bed with the same man and I can’t stop him from getting hurt. I’ve tried to stay away from him, I’ve tried stalking him, I’ve even told him I love him but it didn’t work. I even tried to kill myself twice, but instead of dying I just wake up back in that bed again with Justin and there’s nothing I can do to stop it.”

 

“That’s very interesting. You say you’ve tried to kill yourself?” Freud’s file folder is open again and his pen is making rapid notations now, apparently the suicide thing is important. “Tell me about these suicide attempts, Mr. Kinney.”

 

“The first time I tried scarfing - you know erotic auto-asphyxiation? I did get a great orgasm out of it but then I woke up the next morning in bed just like usual with Justin there again. The next time, I decided not to waste time with fancy methods and just threw myself in front of the #22 bus on Liberty Avenue. That didn’t work either. I’m not going to do this again though. I can’t. It hurts too much to know that Justin is going to get hurt and possibly killed again by that stupid homophobic prick, Chris Hobbs, and there isn’t anything I can do about it. So, I want you to commit me and keep me here until I’m cured and I stop reliving this horrible year.”

 

Freud is ‘hmming’ at me as I go through this recitation. He seems very fixated on the suicide attempts and not at all curious about my time/space perception issues. “So, Mr. Kinney, would you say that you are still suicidal right now?” he asks.

 

“No. Not particularly. I mean, I already tried that - twice - and it didn’t work, so why would I try it again?” I say to him honestly. “What I really want is to have this fucking year stop repeating on me. Can’t I just skip forward to where I was before? The night after Justin broke up with me? I wouldn’t mind re-doing that night again - I have an actual shot at getting that night right this time around so that wouldn’t be such a bad night to re-live. I mean, all I have to do is tell Justin I love him and ask him to stay - if I do that then he will be happy and we can just go back to our same old life, right. I can do that now, I’m sure of it. After seeing him get killed that one time, I know I can tell him the truth - that I do love him, and that I want him to stay with me. So, that’s what I want, Doc. I just want to skip forward for four years and not do this year over again.”

 

“I see,” Freud says again, looking over his notes as he chews on a longish corner of his mustache. After several minutes, he finally looks up at me and begins his ‘clinical’ diagnosis. ”Mr. Kinney, I AM concerned that you are clinically depressed and struggling desperately with this relationship you have with . . .  what was his name? Ah, yes, Justin. Your boyfriend I take it? It sounds like the two of you have some serious issues to work through. Many of my patients feel that they are stuck in a rut of some type, making the same mistakes over and over again and that they are unable to make valid choices that will help them get out of the cycle of their past mistakes. That is a fairly common symptom that is often associated with depression. Your depression would also explain your prior suicide attempts. And, I would be happy to help you work through those feelings. But, be that as it may, I feel it would be more than adequate to treat you on an outpatient basis for these issues. You have told me that you aren’t currently suicidal and you clearly aren’t suffering from acute dementia. While you do have some psychiatric issues, you don’t really need to be admitted for inpatient care, Mr. Kinney.”

 

“But, I WANT to be admitted. I’m sure that I’m crazy.” I try again to explain. “I’m fucking living through the same year over and over again. I can’t be sane - this doesn’t happen to normal, sane people.”

 

“I’m afraid that hospital regulations will not let me admit you as a patient under these circumstances, Mr. Kinney.” Freud repeats, his ‘sympathetic’ look firmly in place. “If you want to set up an appointment to come in and meet with myself or one of our other therapists, though, we would be happy to work through some of these issues with you.”

 

“You don’t understand,” I’m seething now, trying not to bite Freud’s head off at his deliberate failure to listen to what I’m saying. “I’m RE-LIVING the year. I’m not just imagining that I’m reliving it. I’m not just stuck in some rut and making the same mistakes over and over again. I’m actually living the same year again and again, you moron. I’m insane. Don’t you get it?”

 

“Mr. Kinney. I know it sometimes feels like we are doing the same things over again and again and letting ourselves fall into the same mistakes, but I assure you that what you feel is normal under the circumstances. That is one of the primary symptoms of depression. It doesn’t mean that you’re ‘insane’,” Freud is doing his 'calm the irrational patient' thing again. “This is what I propose, Mr. Kinney. I’m going to write you a prescription for an anti-anxiety medication that I think will help with the depression and also a sleep aid since you mentioned that you haven’t been sleeping well lately. Then, we can make an appointment for you to meet with one of our therapists the beginning of next week. After he or she has had a chance to meet with you and do a full evaluation of your case, then I’m sure you and your therapist can work out a plan of action that will satisfy your concerns about what you feel is happening to you.”  

 

Fuck. No. No no no nonononono! Please don’t make me do this again. I don’t want to have to live this year again. Why won’t Freud listen to me - I mean REALLY listen to me without all the psychobabble? I’m finally admitting that I AM CRAZY and no one will believe me. I’m voluntarily seeking out psychological help here - that should prove to them that I’m crazy since Brian Fucking Kinney would never do this unless he was completely over-the-top-bonkers. How the fuck crazy do you have to be for them to admit you are insane enough to get admitted to a hospital? Are they trying to tell me I’m just slightly crazy but not truly nutso enough? I’m seeing things that are impossible here, fellas - that should count as crazy! Why the hell won’t anyone listen and have me committed?  

 

Freud is looking at me with those ‘I really care about you’ eyes again - fucking hypocrite - trying to gauge my cooperation. Shithead! He’s the one that obviously needs a psychiatrist with that insane hairdo. Fine, though. Whatever. I can tell that I’m not going to get any help here.  

 

“Just give me the ‘script, doc. I’ll make the appointment with my own doc if you won’t let them admit me,” I offer in compromise, not explaining to him that I don’t really have a doctor of my own and have no intention of following up with anyone.  

 

So now I’m sitting here back in my loft staring at the bag full of medication that Freud prescribed for me. Fucking idiot - depression! Like that explains what’s happening to me for the past six years or so. Yeah right! Fuck you, Freud.  

 

Well, the good news is that I’m not, officially, crazy. I’m just depressed. But, not depressed enough to be crazy, especially since I’m not currently suicidal anymore. Oh goody! So, that means if I take all these little blue sleeping aid pills, it’s not because I’m crazy and it has nothing to do with the fact that I can’t get off this fucking roller coaster ride of a year. It’s just that I’m depressed. Great one, doc. I definitely plan to use that one in the future - any time I drink too much or take too many drugs, it’s not going to be because I’m an asshole with no self control or because that’s the only way I know to manage my pain, as Mikey likes to put it, it’s because I’m ‘clinically depressed’. Great! That’s all I fucking need - I’d rather be considered crazy than to have all the fags on the Avenue talking about how ‘depressed’ I am.  

 

Fuck you, Freud. I guess I was wrong about not being suicidal anymore. You’ve talked me into it. So, lets see, what if I take about a dozen of these little blue ones and add a couple of the weird white ones and add three or four tabs of E with some trail mix. Better wash it all down with a bottle of Beam. How’s that for you for depressed, Freud?  

 

“Cheers! Here’s to Depression. A lovely alternative to being Crazy!” I toast to the wise doctor who knows so much about crazy that he wouldn’t even listen to me, as I down my lovely and colorful pile of pills along with a about a half a bottle of whiskey.

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<5.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

“Ah. The lovely sound of the remarkable, time-travelling alarm clock,” I spout at the sound of the familiar *Beep, Beep*.  

 

Sitting up I immediately lean over to kiss the luscious red licorice lips of my Justin, who’s just starting to stir in response to the alarm clock himself. Okay, I think - waking up to a randy, seventeen year-old Justin every morning isn’t so bad - if only I didn’t have to live through the rest of the year every time as well. Hmm. Let’s see what I can do about that.

 

“Good morning, Sunshine,” I say to rouse him further, adding a couple of extra kisses for good measure. “I know that no one is willing to believe me, but I feel even crazier than usual today. I’m tired of being crazy sad, though. Let’s be crazy happy instead. So tell me, what’s the craziest, happiest place you know of?”

“That’s easy, Brian. Kennywood!” Justin announces as he sits up in the bed next to me, giggling softly.  

 

Kennywood Home Page

 

“Ah, yes, the infamous Kennywood. Pittsburgh’s answer to the amusement park.” I begin to reminisce. “Of course, it wasn’t very amusing the one time I went there - Jack found out I skipped school to spend the day at the park and beat the shit out of me for it - the fact that I stole the money for the admissions ticket price out of his wallet while he was lying there passed out probably didn’t help matters much. But, prior to the beating, I remember it being fun enough.”  

 

Woops - shouldn’t have mentioned Jack. Justin’s face just dropped about a foot and a half and that’s not part of the crazy fun agenda for the day. Note to self - no more mention of Jack or beatings for the rest of the day.  

 

“Well, Sunshine,” I prod him out of bed with a finger to his ticklish ribcage. “Let’s get going. All that fun isn’t going to happen on it’s own. Get into the shower with you. Come on. Kennywood awaits!”  

 

I goose his perfect bubble butt rear as Justin clambers over me to get out of bed. His silly little boy giggle lights up the room and his face is the perfect sunshine smile I love. This is much better than sad, morose crazy, I think. I pull him back before he can get all the way away from me though and toss my cell phone to him.  

 

“Call a friend if you want to have someone join us for the day,” I offer, careful not to name names and set his stalker radar off again, but knowing that the only person he’d think of calling is Daphne anyway.

 

“Brian, what about school?” he asks, my good little straight A student at heart.  

 

“Fuck school - for one day at least,” I give my best advice. “You can miss one day, Sunshine. As brilliant as you are it won’t kill your GPA. Besides, I can call and pretend to be your dad and excuse you because of your terrible, probably contagious, illness - based on your terrible symptoms, it could be whooping cough, or cholera or even ebola. The school nurse wouldn’t want you there with such a dreaded illness anyway, now would she.”

 

“Okay, but you’ll have to call for Daphne, my friend, too. Her parents are even more strict about school shit than mine are.” Justin grins at me, already dialing Daphne’s number.  

 

While the boy is on the phone with his fag hag, I use the landline to invite along my best buddy, Michael. “Hey, Mikey! We’re playing hooky today! Get your ass over here and come dressed for fun!” I announce to the barely awake Mr. Novotny as he mumbles incoherently into the phone. “My little blond boy toy wants to go to Kennywood for the day so you’re going to come with us and we’re going to have fun all day. You better call into work sick and then get over here with the Jeep. Oh and send Emmett out to watch the car while you’re getting ready so those juvie kids from down the block don’t vandalize it while you’re dawdling along.”

 

"Brian? What the fuck are you talking about?” is Michael’s less than brilliant response, although I have to give him a break seeing as I just woke him up.

 

“You, me, Justin and his fag hag. Kennywood. Now. Get dressed. Make sure Emmett guards the Jeep. Let’s go, Mikey. Daylight’s a wasting and I need to have crazy happy fun today!” I order then hang up the phone as Michael starts to protest, as expected.

 

Three hours later I’m sitting strapped into some god awful mechanical contraption called ‘The Black Widow’ wondering what exactly I’m doing here at 10:00 am on a random Friday with Justin strapped into the seat next to me, Daphne on his far side and Mikey on my left. Oh shit! This is one fucking hell of a ride, is the only coherent thought I have as the damn contraption starts spinning me around and around and I giggle along with the teens to my right.

 

The Black Widow - Youtube Video Brian's View from the Black Widow

 

 

End Notes:

 

Check out that great Youtube video to see Brian's POV on the Black Widow ride.  It's a really fun video - provided you don't get motion sickness.

 

Hope that the discussion with 'Freud' at the hospital answers some of the questions you all have had about Brian's motives at the end of the last chapter.  Depression can make you do and think pretty horrible things.  Even our hero isn't immune from the devastating effects of depression, and when he saw Justin killed and then found he couldn't stop it even when he tried, he was struck pretty hard.  I'm sorry that my explanations weren't very good before - like I said, I'm writing in 15 min increments these days so my prose is a little more disjointed than I would like.

 

For anyone who has struggled through depression - your author included - it isn't really a laughing matter.  Here is a worldwide website dedicated to helping all of us who struggle with the illness.  Hope it helps some of you:  Befrienders Worldwide - Suicide Prevention website

 

Hope you enjoyed this installment.  I'll try to write more asap.  TAG

 

 

Chapter 7 - Crazy Happy Day's Disastrous End by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

It looks like Brian is doing something right this time! Yay! Look out though - nothing is as it seems, dear Brian. Somehow, I don't think our boy is off the roller coaster ride of this story yet . . . TAG

 

Chapter 7 - Crazy Happy Day's Disastrous End.

 

After five roller coasters, two water rides and one 'Adventure' ride - my favorite since it was dark the whole way and I get to spend it making out with Justin - even the teens are worn out enough to take a break. We've just ordered some food and we're sitting on a shady picnic bench waiting for the hot Latino server to bring our meals.

 

I'm busy trying to fondle Sunshine under the table while he keeps squirming away - complaining, 'Brian, stop', in a hushed voice. So far the breeders who frequent this place seem to be ignoring our out and proud homo displays, but I can tell it's making the boy a bit nervous. Daphne seems amused by the interplay between us - laughing hysterically every time I steal a kiss when Sunshine's guard is down. His friend's laughter seems to just annoy him more. This annoying of the boy and entertaining of Daphne is fun, so I just keep it up no matter how much Justin keeps protesting. Michael sits there scowling at me in disapproval but knows better than to say anything.

 

I indulge my crazy fun self with a greasy burger, fries AND a milkshake today - who knows, you just might get hit by the #22 bus later, so why worry about carbs? Mikey is watching me like he's worried I've been replaced by a pod person. Poor Mikey, he's never been very open to change and my behavior today is really challenging him. But since it's good for him to stretch himself like this, I'm glad I'm able to help. Maybe I should be a little more concerned though with how far I'm pushing Michael - he's looking a little on edge.

 

Daphne decides she wants an elephant ear doughnut for dessert and I offer to go with her to find this exotic delicacy. When we return, I overhear Mikey giving Sunshine his version of 'Kinney 101'. What he doesn't understand is that those directions don't apply anymore - I'm not sure they ever did where Justin was concerned.  

 

"I'm just saying, Brian doesn't DO relationships. He doesn't DO boyfriends. Fuck, he doesn't even do repeats," Michael explains how he sees things, however warped his perspective might be. "You seem like a nice kid, so I'm just trying to give you a heads up, you know. Don't expect too much from Brian. He's had you, and this little outing aside, don't expect that you're going to get more out of this than you already have."

 

"Bullshit, Mikey!" I interrupt as I straddle the picnic bench behind Justin, snaking my arms around the boy's slender waist. "I DO whatever the fuck I want to, who I want to and whenever I want to. And, that definitely includes doing Sunshine here. So shut your trap, Mikey, and don't try to scare the boy off."

 

"Fuck, Brian. What the hell has gotten into you today. This is just not like you," Mikey voices his confusion.

 

"Nothing's 'gotten into me' today, Mikey. At least not yet. Care to help me out with this little oversight, Sunshine?" I ask, waggling my eyebrows at the boy provocatively as I extend my hand to help him off the bench.  

 

"I'd love to help you, Brian," my brave little blond says assertively, accepting my hand and letting me lead him towards the closest men's room.

 

I pat Mikey on the shoulder as we walk past to reassure him that the world isn't going to end just because his idol has publicly stated an inclination to let a cute little blond twink top him. Poor man is still sitting there with his mouth hanging open when we return about fifteen minutes later. The look of horror on his face is almost too comical, but I stop myself from laughing because I don't want to hurt him that much - stretching Mikey's boundaries is one thing but I don't want to permanently traumatize him.

 

"Better shut your mouth, Mikey, or you'll start to catch flies," I say, repeating one of Debbie's catch phrases.

 

Justin has the perfect 'Kinney-esque' smirk on his beautiful lips as he sits down next to Daphne and retrieves his now lukewarm soda.

 

"Justin" Daphne whispers at him, "you didn't . . . ?"

 

"Oh, yes he did. And quite well, I might add, if my sore ass is any proof," I respond on Justin's behalf, kissing the chuckling blond as I sit next to him.

 

"What the fuck is going on, Brian?" Michael finally blows his top, standing up and yelling into my face. "This isn't like you at all. Tell me what the fuck is going on right now or I'm calling Ma and you can bet she'll get to the bottom of this shit pretty damn fast."

 

I try really hard, I do, but I just can't stop myself from laughing at poor Mikey's outburst.

 

"Michael, listen to me. Are you listening?" I demand his attention.

 

"Yeah, I'm listening, Brian, but this better be good."

 

"There is absolutely nothing wrong with me other than that I decided I want to have fun today. I am allowed to have fun once in awhile, aren't I? I want to do things I've never done before. I want to have fun. You and I both know I didn't get to have much of it as a kid. So I'm doing it now. Now, sit down and stop acting crazier than me. I hate being upstaged."

 

Even though he occasionally continues his fish out of water, gaping mouth routine every so often, this appears to shut Mikey up for the rest of the afternoon while Justin, Daphne and I have more crazy fun and ride more rides. I even do the macho man thing and manage to win a stuffed elephant for Daphne at one of the carney booths. We finally struggle out of the park around 3:00 pm so I can get my delinquent teens home at about the same time they would arrive after a normal school day. We're all exhausted, sunburned, stuffed with junk food and laughing our asses off as we load into the Jeep for the ride home. Even Mikey seems to have enjoyed himself a little once he stopped worrying about me being crazier than usual.  

 

I can honestly say that I haven't ever had a day this fun in all my 30 (or is it 37 now after redoing all those years?) years of life.  

 

Too bad it doesn't last.

 

We drop Mikey off first since he says he has no interest in visiting suburbia again today. Then I take Daphne to her house - dropping her off around the corner so as not to alert the parents to our school-free escapade. I've definitely won that girl over - she kisses my cheek as she jumps out of the car and gushes at me with thanks for a good five minutes before Justin makes fun of her enough that she finally leaves, walking around the corner and waving to us as she goes.  

 

Next stop, Taylorville - although I would have loved to find an excuse to keep Justin with me for the rest of the night, I didn't want to push him. I drive the Jeep to the end of his block and park. I pull him towards me for one last, deep kiss - his lips taste like ketchup from the last batch of fries we shared at the park. I love kissing these pouty, full, delicious lips. If I never had to release my possession of those lips, I would be blissfully happy. Understandably, the kissing goes on for quite a while and both of us are oblivious to what's going on around us in the meantime.  

 

We are interrupted though, long before I would have chosen to stop my attentions to those wondrous lips.  

 

"Justin. Get the fuck out of that car right this instant! And you - you fucking pervert, get your god damned hands off my son!" I hear the words being screamed at me, the all too familiar tones of Craig Taylor's voice grating on my eardrums. "Justin! Let's go! NOW!"

 

"Shit," Justin mumbles under his breath as he disentangles himself from me and tumbles out of the Jeep, standing sheepishly at his father's side and looking at me apologetically.

 

"Get the fuck home, Justin. I'll talk to you when I'm done here." Craig orders.

 

"Sorry, Brian," Justin apologizes as he beats a hasty retreat down the block towards his house. "I'll call you later."

 

"The fuck you will. You'll be grounded till you're 30 if I have anything to say about it, young man," Craig expostulates. "Just get the hell home and I'll talk to you in a minute."

 

I'm caught off guard here, unfortunately, since this particular situation hasn't come up before in any of the prior permutations of this year.  As such, reacting a little slowly, I don't do anything in response to Craig's verbal attack until Justin's already halfway down the block. I'm still not sure how Craig found out about us this time around. All I know is that, once again, I've set my poor boy up for a world of trouble with his homophobic prick of a father.  

 

Shit, why can't I get this right. I don't want Justin to have to deal with Craig yet. All I wanted was to have a fun, carefree day with my lover and somehow, without even knowing how, I've fucked up again. Damn you, Craig. Why can't you just let your son be happy for one lousy day.

 

Once Justin is out of sight in his house, Craig turns to me with venom dripping from his words.  

 

"I don't know who the fuck you are, you pervert. But, I'm warning you now, you stay the fuck away from my son. If I so much as hear that you've been anywhere near him ever again, you'll fucking regret it. Do you hear me?" Craig is spitting his hateful words into my face, his angry, ugly lopsided mouth only inches from mine.

 

"Back the fuck away from me, Craig," I hiss. "You have no idea who the fuck you're dealing with. I love Justin and I'm not about to give him up for the likes of your puny, pathetic, homophobic ass. Do your worst, you little slug. I'm not going to take orders from you and as long as Justin wants to be with me, your opinion on the matter means diddly squat."

 

I start the car and shift into drive, not waiting for Craig's predictably offended response. I just wish I could storm into that house and pull Justin out with me. The only thing stopping me is the realization that I have to let him make his own way in life or he'll hate me for it in the end. But that doesn't mean that I don't detest Craig even more than before for forcing this confrontation.

 

I'm not more than five blocks away before my cell starts ringing. I quickly pull over so I can safely answer the call, thinking that it has to be Justin calling to explain what the hell happened. But it's not him - it's Daphne.

 

"Oh thank God, Brian. I'm so glad I got the right number. Justin only had time to call me briefly before they took his phone away. I could hear them yelling at him in the background as he talked and then the line went dead. Before they took his phone, though, he told me to call you and explain,” the words are tumbling out of Daphne almost faster than I can understand. “It’s all my fault, I’m afraid. My mom came to school today to bring a book I forgot that she thought I would need and found out I wasn’t there. And of course she called Justin’s mother - it’s kind of a given that when one of us is up to trouble the other one isn’t far behind. Well, it wouldn’t have been so bad if it was just Mrs. Taylor - she’s pretty much okay, you know - but she called Justin’s dad, who’s a royal pain in the ass almost all the time. Shit, Justin’s going to be grounded for, like, the rest of his natural life after this.”

 

“Stop, Daphne,” I interrupt. “Take a breath. I don’t know how you manage to talk so much on so little oxygen. By the way - it’s worse than you know - when Craig found Justin he was sort of wrapped in my arms being pretty much tongue fucked. I don’t think Craig was all that happy to find out his son was gay in that particular fashion.”

 

“OH SHIT! Poor Justin.” Daphne sounded like she was about to cry on the other end of the phone line.

 

“Oh shit is right. Daphne, you have to do me a favor. Please, find out how Justin is and let me know, okay. I didn’t mean to get him outed like that. I know Craig is a shithead and can get violent sometimes. Can you let Justin know that  . . .  Well, if he needs anything or if Craig gets too out of control, just let me know.”

 

“I will, Brian. Sorry about all this. Anyway, I’m grounded too so I better get off the phone before my parents take mine away too. Don’t worry though. I’ll make sure Justin is okay. Bye, Brian.”

 

All I can do now is drive back to the loft and wait to hear from Daphne or Justin. Fuck. I just wish there was something I could do. Sitting here waiting is a bitch. I know that Craig isn't as bad as Jack used to be, but that doesn't mean the fucker won't hit Justin - I've seen him do it before. Half a dozen times I reach for my keys, ready to rush back to the Taylor house and rescue my poor little twink - the only thing stopping me is my fear of making things even worse.

 

I turn in the end to my old pal, Jim Beam, who gives me what comfort he can as I slowly get shit faced and eventually pass out.

 

The incessant hammering on the inside of my skull eventually wakes me up in the morning. After a couple minutes though I realize that the hammering I'm hearing isn't just in my head - some of it is happening on my door as well. I manage to roll off the couch, where I apparently slept last night, and unkink my back sufficiently to stand. Then I stumble to the door.  

 

"Thank god, you're home, Brian," Sunshine declares as he launches himself into my arms before the door is opened more than two feet. "I'm so sorry about all that shit with my dad. Daph did call you and explain what happened, right? Shit, I'm so fucked, Brian."

 

"Calm down, Justin. Come in and let me look at you," I say, pulling him into the loft, closing the door and scanning his face to fully assess the damage. "That fucker, Craig. Look what he fucking did to your face. Are you okay, Sunshine?"

 

Justin's lip is split and he's going to have a hellish bruise on the left side of his jaw, but his injuries don't seem to have dimmed the firery glint of defiance in his eyes. I adore that unquenchable spirit of his. Nothing deters Justin for long - I'm living proof of that.

 

"I'm fine, Brian," Justin says, swatting my hands away as I try to get a better look at his swelling jaw. "It doesn't hurt that bad. My asshole father thought he could beat the gay out of me. But I told him that no matter how much he hit me, I was still going to be his queer son. That didn't exactly shut him up, but he quit trying to hit me at least."

 

"I feel like shit about this, Sunshine. I didn't think our day playing hooky was going to cause such an uproar. Shit. Let me get you some ice for you mouth."

 

Justin follows me to the kitchen and I get out a baggy to fill with ice then wrap it in a towel. Justin's actually smiling as I hold the makeshift ice pack to his jaw - I'm not sure why since getting your ass handed to you by your father after getting inadvertently outed isn't usually the kind of stuff to make you grin. He's looking at me with that shit eating grin and those adoring sapphire blue eyes though and I can't help smiling back even with my raging hangover.  

 

"What the fuck are you so happy about, twat?" I can't help but ask.

 

"My dad said you stood up for me," Justin starts to explain. "You told him you loved me?"

 

"Don't let it go to your head," I respond, curling my lips under to hide the smile that wants to break out without permission. "I was just having fun poking at the beast. You should have seen how his face turned sort of purple-red when I said that."

 

Justin didn't say anything more, he just kept right on grinning at me and I eventually gave up and let myself grin back. What a couple of lesbians, right? I'd better check and make sure my dick's still there after all this drivel.

 

"So now what, Sunshine?" I finally get to the point.

 

"I don't know. My dad gave me an ultimatum - he said either I give up my 'disgusting lifestyle' and promise never to see you again or I shouldn't bother coming home again. The fucking prick." Justin wasn't smiling anymore as he related what his dad said. "So, since I don't really have a lot of options, I guess I'm off to eat my pride, kiss the prick's ass and pretend to be straight for a few more months till I can leave for college. I didn't want to just disappear on you without saying goodbye, though."

 

"Fuck that! Don't ever let them make you pretend to be someone you're not. You have options, Justin."

 

"Well, yeah, but homelessness just really doesn't sound all that fun. And, with no job, no money and nowhere to live, that is really my only other choice. So, dad wins for now," he says with a resigned shrug. "I'll get through this and I figure once I'm in college he can go jump in a lake - I'll be able to do what I want then. It's only a year. I can deal for that long. If only . . . "

 

"If only what?"

 

"It's just that I'll miss you, Brian. I know we haven't known each other that long, but, well . . . it's been really great and I wish . . . "

 

"Justin, is that what you really want?" I ask, trying not to push too hard. "Can you really do this - pretend to be what Craig wants for another year?"

 

"No. It's not what I want. I just don't have a choice, Brian."

 

"Yes, you do. You could move in here, with me," I make the offer, hoping that I'm not rushing things again - I don't want to scare him off.  

 

"You don't mean that, Brian," Justin scoffs at the out of character offer. "Don't worry. I'll be okay. I'll get by somehow."

 

"You're right that you haven't known me for long. Once you have, you'll learn that I never say anything I don't mean," I advise the boy, watching the hope grow in his eyes. "I wouldn't offer to let you move in here unless I meant it. You're more than welcome if you want to stay here, Sunshine. I admit that I'm a bitch to live with sometimes, but at least with me you'll never have to pretend to be something you're not. So, what do you say, roomie?"

 

"Really?"

 

"Yes, twat, really."

 

"Okay. I guess you have yourself a new roommate, Mr. Kinney," Justin says giving me one of his full out sunshine smiles - the one I can never resist.

 

 

End Notes:

 

After all the angst I've put you though for the past few chapters, I felt my loyal readers deserved some happiness and fun. Hope you enjoy it cause it ain't gonna last - just warning you . . . The evil torture of Brian isn't over quite yet, folks. TAG

 

 

Chapter 8 - Craig’s Version of Crazy Day by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

Was it just me or did there seem to be a real lack of smut in the last few chapters of this story? I'm so sorry.  I made sure to include a little in here for your reading pleasure. But, don't get too happy over the little shower scene - more angst is on it's way.  Sorry, again.  You can't say you haven't been warned, though. TAG

 

Chapter 8 - Craig’s Version of Crazy Day.  

 

Previously: "Okay. I guess you have yourself a new roommate, Mr. Kinney," Justin says giving me one of his full out sunshine smiles - the one I can never resist.

 

I can’t believe that I did it. I think I’ve managed to work this the right way this time around. I’m going to get my Sunshine back. This time, I’m going to do it right.  

 

"Good.” I say, my happiness almost as transparent as Justin’s. “Now, I'm going to take a handful of pain relievers to dull the fucking hangover that's making my brain feel like it's being mined by an army of small evil dwarves with large pickaxes. Then we’re going to go celebrate our new living arrangements in the shower, where you can show me your undying appreciation by sucking me off. And, finally, we'll go get some breakfast then head over to your house to pick up your stuff. Does that sound like a good plan to you, Sunshine?"

 

"Yeee Haw!" is the enthusiastic response I get from the boy, who is already shucking his clothing as he heads towards the bathroom, eager to get to step two of the plan.

 

It's almost enough to get rid of the hangover, even without the pain killers! And, who said I wasn't flexible? I'm perfectly willing to rearrange things so we can start with the shower and the sucking and move the hangover cure to second. 'Yeee Haw' indeed, I think, and I follow the boy's lead, dribbling off my own pants as I head into the bathroom where I can already hear the water running.   

 

He's already standing under the water, his back to me and rivulets of liquid dancing down his back and sides. The tiny misgivings - 'what the hell am I thinking' and 'why am I doing this again' - evaporate immediately as soon as I see that gorgeous, taut, flawless, ivory skin and that tempting luscious butt. God, whatever troubles it causes me in the future, knowing that I have that perfect little ass all to myself from here on out is totally worth it. It takes only that one brief glimpse of that sweet little ass to cause all the blood in my brain to relocate to my dick. I'm as hard as a fucking steel rod in under 30 seconds. Oh the things you can do to me Sunshine.  

 

"Hey, beautiful. I think you missed a spot," I tease, taking the soap out of his hand and working to soap up his crack really well. "Let me get that for you."

 

As soon as I have a good lather going, I gleefully use it to pop a finger in that oh-so-tight little hole, causing the kid to jump a bit before he settles back, moaning and wriggling his greedy ass down further on my finger. With my other hand I'm stroking in circles on his chest and abs, pinching the supple skin every so often when I feel the urge. And my mouth is busy at the same time, nibbling down the side of his sensitive neck, trying to hit each nerve ending that I know will give him the most pleasure.  

 

The stream of happy noises he's making egg me on. I add another finger, fucking him with my hand the way he loves - or will love - I'm still iffy on the whole time frame thing, but know that he's not gonna hate it any time soon either way. Justin is probably the most energetic lover I've ever had - he's already writhing and gasping and thrusting his ass back at me, trying to feel every sensation at once and, if it didn't make me so fucking horny, I'd probably laugh at his antics. But, luckily for the boy's ego, I'm so eager myself that I don't have time to fully savor the humor of the situation.  

 

Grabbing a condom from my stash in the soap dish, and completely abandoning the sucking plan, I decide to go for the full deal instead. I'm not wasting any time getting it on, even doing it one handed while I continue to finger the sweet blond boy ass I love so much.  

 

"Brian, I need you. Now, Brian. Please," my boy is pleading with me.

 

Before I pull out my fingers though, I twist them around and stroke across his sweet spot several times until the boy lets out a gratifyingly loud groan. He's so ecstatic by that time that, when I do pull out and replace my fingers with my aching dick, Justin hardy notices.  

 

I feel so at home as I slide into that tight embrace. Justin is always so amazingly tight. It feels so right, like we just fit so well. I can finally get out from all that tension - Justin is here with me, finally, and we're both okay - I've got him back. This is truly a celebration. I abandon myself to the joy of the moment and pump into that lusty ass, finally content that this is right again.

 

It takes no time at all for both of us to climax. I feel my release at the same time I finally acknowledge that I've got my Sunshine back. Justin is only moments behind me. We both collapse against the glass shower wall and enjoy the bliss, neither of us eager to separate.

 

"Not that I'm complaining or anything, Brian, but wasn't I going to get to suck you off to show you my never-ending appreciation?" Justin asks as he pushes away from the wall, resting his head against my shoulder.  

 

"No problem, Sunshine. I didn't mean to steal your thunder. I just couldn't resist the sight of your hot little ass all wet and ready for me in the shower. You know how bad I am. Just give me about five more minutes of your time and attentions and I'll be ready for the sucking phase of our plan."

 

Twenty minutes later, thanks in large part to Justin's talented tongue, we're done in the shower and heading out the door for some breakfast. I figure it's time to introduce this version of Justin to Debbie, so we head to the Diner. Saturday mornings are typically slow, since most of the usual patrons are, like me, still recovering from Friday evening's overindugences. But that's good for us since we get our choice of booths, Debbie's full attention and no interference from the rest of my friends.

 

I know that my news is going to go over like a lead balloon with some of them - namely, Michael - so my plan is to let Deb do the honors of spreading the news and dealing with the boys' initial reactions before I even have to see them. Brilliant, right? As long as Deb cooperates, it should be fine.

 

"Morning, Brian. To what do we owe the pleasure of your company on this very early - too fucking early for the likes of you, I might add - Saturday morning?" Deb's greeting proves she's in the exact mood I'd been hoping for. "And who is this adorable fucking ray of sunshine you've brought with you?"

 

"Good morning, Deb. This is Justin. Justin, meet Debbie - the closest thing to a mother that I'll ever publicly acknowledge." That gets a smile out of the old girl right away - the Kinney charm rarely fails. "Deb, we need two coffees, as quickly as you can, before my fucking head explodes. You're right about it being too fucking early. But I had to get up and feed my twink here before he started getting grumpy. You know how it is - grumpy twinks give lousy head, and we wouldn't want that now would we?"

 

"Ha!" Debbie's usual guffaw echos through the room, her laughter making Justin's blush an even darker shade of red. "Two coffees coming up immediately, your Hungoverness!"

 

When Deb brings our plates several minutes later, she yells at Kiki that she's taking a break and slides into the other side of the booth, waiting with what, for Debbie, is an incredible amount of patience for me to start with the expected explanations. I know it's futile to resist so I sigh and start in directly. After all, if I'm going to do this right this time, I figure I better start off with full disclosure. I don't want anyone to have any mistaken ideas this time around.

 

"So, Deb. You better get used to seeing Sunshine here around the Diner a lot - he's going to be moving in with me." There, I did it - and remarkably, the earth didn't crack open and swallow me whole, although from the look on Deb's face that probably would have surprised her less.  

 

"Brian, honey. Are you feeling okay? You're not still tweaked from last night are you? I coulda sworn I just heard you say this kid's moving in with you?" a concerned Debbie asks for clarification.

 

"I'm not stoned and you heard right, Deb. I sorta, inadvertently, outed the kid yesterday - his dad thought he was gonna catch his son coming home after playing hooky from school and instead caught him playing tonsil hockey with me in the Jeep," I start to explain. "Daddy dearest told him to fly straight from here on out or get the hell out of the house. No way I'm gonna let Justin go back there and deal with that shit. So I asked him to move in with me."

 

Predictably, Deb spends the rest of her break trying to talk both Justin and me out of such an 'insane' idea. Justin's the one who finally gets her to shut it, surprisingly enough.

 

"Thanks for your concern and all, Debbie," Justin asserts. "But Brian and I are going to do whatever the fuck we want, with or without your approval. I don't mean to be rude, exactly, but I don't really think it's any of your business. You ready to go, Brian?"

 

Have I mentioned before how much I adore this boy? He's got one huge set of titanium balls on him. There's not much to add after a statement like that, is there? I just grin at Deb's 'deer in the headlights' gaze and slide out of the booth after Justin without saying anything more. I peck Deb goodbye on the cheek, leave enough money on the table to cover the bill and follow my gutsy little blond out the door, chuckling under my breath as I go.  

 

As soon as we're outside, I spin Justin around, circle his waist with my arms and kiss him hard.

 

"What's that for?" Justin asks as soon as he gets his tongue back.

 

"It's because you're so fucking amazing. In the last three days you've come out on your own, lost your cherry, confronted your parents and dealt with their disapproval and now, to top it all off, you just told off Debbie Novotny, Liberty Avenue's self appointed mother hen. You don't realize how ballsy that is, Sunshine. I'm so fucking impressed. You have no idea."

 

Justin merely shrugs. "I didn't like how she acted like she could tell you what to do, Brian. I know you said she was like a mother to you, but I still didn't like the disrespect she was showing you," Justin states, matter of factly.  

 

Like I said - he's amazing. "Let's go get your stuff, Sunshine."

 

When we arrive at the Taylor abode, unfortunately, both Craig and Jennifer are waiting for us. Neither appear very happy to see me walking in with their son. So much for getting off on the right foot with the inlaws.

 

"What the fuck are you doing here!" Craig hissed at me as Justin and I walk into the Taylor kitchen hand in hand. "I thought I told you to stay the hell away from Justin?

 

"Yeah, and I told you I didn't give a crap what you wanted as far as Justin was concerned, so back the fuck away from me, Craig," I respond, then turn towards the usually more level headed of the Taylor parents, extending my hand to Jennifer.  "Sorry about that. I'm Brian Kinney, Mrs. Taylor."

 

"Ummm, uh Mr. Kinney," Jennifer stammers, clearly not prepared for the 'pervert' corrupting her son to actually be human or to seek to introduce himself to her. "I have to agree with my husband and ask what ARE you doing here?"

 

"He's here because I want him here," Justin answers. "You said that if I wasn't able to give up my 'disgusting lifestyle' I shouldn't bother to come home, huh Dad? Well, I've decided you're right - I won't be coming home again. Brian has offered to let me stay with him. I just came to get my clothes and stuff and then me and my queer lifestyle will be out of your life forever, Dad."

 

"Justin, please, you don't mean that," Jennifer begs, trying to intervene between him and Craig. "We don't want you to leave, Justin. Your dad and I were just a little shocked by everything yesterday. You've got to understand it's a lot to take in. Craig, please, tell him that you weren't serious about all that last night. Craig?"

 

"The fuck I wasn't, Jenn," Craig spits back. "If you leave here with this goddamned pervert, Justin, you're not coming back, ever. Do you understand? I will not have MY son traipsing around with some fudge-packing fruit twice his age. If you know what's good for you, young man, you'll get back up to your room and I'll come deal with you after I've gotten rid of this trash."

 

"Craig, think about what you're doing - what you're saying," Jennifer is still trying to salvage the mess, but it looks to me like she's fighting a losing battle.

 

"No, Jenn, I'm serious about this. We've been too lenient with the boy for too fucking long and look where it's gotten us. Justin is never going to learn unless we make it clear to him where we stand."

 

"Yeah, Craig, those bruises on his face show just how 'lenient' you've been," I can't help but add. "And it's pretty clear that you stand right alongside the rest of the homophobic pricks that despise your son just because he's gay. You should run for 'father of the year', Craig."

 

"Nobody asked you for your input," Craig screeches back at me, his face a dark purple with rage and the veins in his temples throbbing visibly.  

 

Craig grabs hold of Justin's arm at this point and tries to tow him away from me. Jenn is wailing at Craig to stop. I'm trying to insinuate myself between Justin and his dad who looks to me like he’s about to start slugging if he doesn't get his way soon. The poor kid is just confused as hell, clearly not enjoying being the center of a three way tug of war. Suddenly the boy's patience snaps.  

 

"Everybody just SHUT THE FUCK UP!" Justin yells as he pulls out of his father's grasp, turning to face down all of us. "I'm not going to stay in this house, Dad. Apparently your idea of love involves making me into something I'm not and can never be, so you've left me little choice. Sorry, Mom, but I won't stay as long as dad feels this way. And, Brian, stop poking the beast - I know you like watching his face turn purple but I'm sure my mom would rather not have him dropping from a heart attack in the kitchen. Let's just go and I'll come back for my shit later."

 

That's my strong, brave Sunshine - his fearlessness makes me smile in spite of the heated situation. As we exit, I quickly hand Jennifer one of my business cards so she'll have a way to contact Justin. Then we're out of there and headed back to the loft in the Jeep.  

 

Justin is prattling on about his asinine father. I don't really know what to add - I'm hardly one to talk about how to deal with unaccepting fathers. Instead, I'm already thinking ahead to getting him some clothes and shit to tide him over till we can get his stuff. I start to plug my headset into my phone, thinking I'll hire Emmett as a personal shopper to get it done with the least amount of hassle - to me at least - when the stop light we were at changes to green. I shift into first and start to pull into the intersection.  

 

That's when a silver compact races up from behind me and rams into the rear of the Jeep. I had just taken off my seatbelt to lean down and grab the headset, so there's nothing to stop my head from hitting the steering wheel, hard. I manage not to lose consciousness, though. I look over and see that Justin wasn't so lucky, he's slumped against the passenger side door. When I look in the rearview mirror, I see that the car which hit us has backed up and is coming at us again. As it nears, I can see the driver's face.

 

Fucking Craig Taylor.

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<6.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

Here we go again. I really thought I was getting it right that time, too. Shit. Why did Craig have to go and ruin everything?

 

I think I need to maybe go about this more methodically. I should make a list of what works and what doesn't, I decide, as I sit in my office at Ryder's after getting Justin off to school - this time without the day of playing hooky - which I guess I need to add to the list of 'doesn't work'.  

 

Too bad, though, because I really enjoyed that version of the day. I didn't enjoy the vision of Justin collapsed, bleeding in the passenger seat of the Jeep, that I now carried around with me. Craig Taylor really needs to pay for that. Hurting me, beating me up, smashing my car - all these I can handle, but not hurting Justin, too.

 

So, how do I take Craig out of the picture without losing Justin over it?

 

I understand that Justin's relationship with his Dad is a lot different than with me and Jack - He doesn't actually hate his father. He has some good memories of his father. Craig's downfall didn't happen until after he found out Justin was gay. Which, in every case so far, is my fault.  

 

So, in order to keep Craig from losing it and hurting Justin, it logically follows that I either have to keep Craig from finding out that Justin is gay - yeah, that's not gonna happen - or take Craig out of the picture before he finds out.  

 

In a weirdly logical way, it makes perfect sense. Without Craig's involvement Justin wouldn't have been thrown out of his home, Jenn wouldn't have had to deal with all those financial problems, Justin would never have had to deal with the Sap to try to get money for school, we would never have had all those stupid arguments about money and his tuition and, best of all, I'd never have to worry about that fucker, Craig, again.  

 

So it's perfectly logical - I just have to kill Craig Taylor. Without Justin knowing I did it, of course.

 

Only I've never thought about actually killing someone before and I truly don't know where to start. Obviously me ending up in jail isn't going to get me anywhere - if the whole point is to get Justin back and fix this mess, then jail time would be highly counterproductive. So how do you kill someone and get away with it?

 

I'm a classic movie buff, so my mind instantly drifts off to all those Agatha Christie scenarios of the 'perfect crime'. What did I learn from all those hours of movie watching: Make it look like an accident? Stab him with a dagger made of ice? Make the butler do it? Shoot him from the fucking grassy knoll? Shit, killing someone and not getting caught is a lot tougher than it sounds.

 

Then a cartoon light bulb dangling over my head suddenly goes on - I vaguely remember Justin saying that he got a lot of his allergies from his dad, including all his allergies to different medications. Did that include an allergy to something as simple as Tylenol? I think, maybe, I have a plan.

 

 

End Notes:

I'm pretty sure the butler won't be doing it this time - he he he! And, of course, killing Craig would seem perfectly logical to someone who had very recently been questioning his own sanity. Right? Sorry, Brian. This is likely to blow up in your face even more than you might think. Hope you all enjoy in the meantime - especially some of my more bloodthirsty readers who get off on violently ending Craig's life. You know who you are!  TAG.

 

 

Chapter 9 - Murder, Anyone? by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming. When we last saw our time/space challenged Brian, he had just lived through an episode where Craig rammed into the Jeep while not only Brian was in it, but also Justin. That caused him to come up with the brilliant idea that in his next go round, he should kill Craig right from the start so that Daddy Dearest can't f**k things up. Here's what happens when he takes that course of action . . . Enjoy! TAG

 

Chapter 9 - Murder, Anyone?

 

"Cynthia, find out who does the advertising for a company by the name of Taylor Electronics," I order over the intercom. "Then set up a meeting with the owner, Craig Taylor, as soon as possible. Preferably today."

 

Cynthia, always efficient, is back to me within twenty minutes. "I got you an appointment with Taylor this afternoon at 3:30. Be prepared though, he thinks the meeting's about launching a new line of electronic PDA's. Sorry, but it was all I could think of on the spot. Oh, and their advertising is currently done by Sterling - which, by the way, sucks."

 

"Fabulous work, as always, Cynthia," I affirm. "Now, could you please run out and get me a large bottle of extra-strength Tylenol? Thanks. Oh, and one more thing - find out what kind of coffee Taylor likes."

 

Later that afternoon, I'm sitting in the office of Taylor Electronics, across the desk from an unsuspecting Craig Taylor, watching as he sips at the tall black Cafe Americano I'd brought him.

 

"So, let me get this straight, Mr. Kinney. You aren't here about a new line of PDA's?" Taylor asks, his smarmy salesman voice causing my skin to crawl.

 

"Nope. I'm here to see if you're interested in changing your advertising firm, Mr. Taylor," I start in on my standard Ryder spiel, not really giving it my usual Kinney flair since I'm not really interested in representing this cretin or his tacky little company.

 

What I'm really interested in, is whether or not Craig is enjoying his coffee. I'm hoping that the handful of Tylenol I added to his cup hasn't changed the taste too much - at least not enough to cause him to stop drinking. Since he's still sipping, though, I'm hopeful that he hasn't noticed.

 

"I'm sorry, Mr. Kinney. I'm pretty happy with Sterling," Craig starts to say. "They've been doing my ads for years and, um, *cough, cough*, they always do a, *cough* decent job."

 

"Everything okay, Mr. Taylor?" I ask as I watch him loosening the collar of his shirt, his face getting redder and his coughing getting more pronounced.

 

"I'm having trouble *cough, cough, cough*, is all he succeeds in getting out before another, stronger coughing fit hits him.

 

By this point, he's scrambling in his desk drawer for something, not bothering to waste what little breath he has on trying to explain. I sit and wait casually to see how bad a reaction he's really going to have. I don't want to tip him off too soon that I already know what's happening. But, when he bangs his hand against the desk to get my attention, I finally get up and come around his desk to see what it is he's trying to tell me.

 

Craig has found a pencil and managed to write 'EPI' on a pad of sticky notes.

 

"Epi? As in Epi-pen?" I ask him, watching as he nods and points frantically towards his office door with one hand while the other is gripping at his throat. "Are you trying to tell me someone out there has an Epi-pen and you want me to go get it? Now, why the hell would I do that, Craig? After all the trouble I went to getting you to swallow half a bottle of Tylenol, getting that Epi-pen for you would really defeat the purpose, now wouldn't it?"

 

Craig is looking at me with true confusion on his face, mixed in with a whole lotta panic and pain. But I've learned one thing from reading all those comics with Mikey over the years - don't waste time soliloquizing. That's usually where the bad guys slip up. They sit there gloating while their victim slowly dies and they give away their whole evil plan in the process. I'm not going to make that mistake. If by some awful twist of fate this waste of space should survive, I don't need to be confessing and give him any evidence he can use against me in the future. I'm content to just sit quietly and wait a bit.

 

Besides, in this timeline, Craig doesn't even know me yet. What am I going to tell him? Hello, I'm the guy who deflowered your son and in several of my past lives you either attacked me or Justin as a result, so I'm killing you now as a profilactic measure before you hurt either of us again in this lifetime. Yeah, right. I already tried crazy and it didn't work for me. I think I'll skip the confession this time.

 

I don't have all that long to wait, though. Craig's skin tone changes pretty rapidly from angry redneck to cold blue corpse. When he slumps out of his desk chair into a pile on the floor, I saunter over and carefully check for a pulse. When I'm sure there isn't one any longer, I sit back down in the guest chair and patiently wait another five minutes - I don't want to act hastily and risk some zealous EMT bringing him back. Then, when I'm sure it's been enough time, I rise, plaster a look of fear on my face and run to the office door.

 

"Help! Call 911! Mr. Taylor just collapsed in here, I think maybe he just had a heart attack or something," I yell at the receptionist and then stand back and watch the fun.

 

The EMTs arrive promptly but, despite their best efforts, they are unable to revive poor Craig. I wait around briefly while they're trying, just to make sure, you know. Craig's buxom blond secretary is hanging on me like a leech the entire time, sobbing into the shoulder of my suit until it's a nasty, snotty mess, bound for the dry cleaners as soon as I can get out of here. I do wonder why, exactly, the secretary is this upset - Craig never struck me as the type to endear himself to his employees. But then again, most of his employees were geek squad rejects, rather than voluptuous blondes. She certainly seems like Craig's type, but who knows.

 

As soon as I can escape the unwelcome clutches of the weepy blonde, I'm outta there. I'm glad to have that unpleasant little job out of the way and I'm a little amazed that it was that easy. Craig Taylor is gone. One of the least pleasant people to ever inhabit this planet is gone and it happened in the blink of an eye. I feel kinda weird that I was the one responsible, but it's even weirder that I don’t feel all that bad about what I've done.

 

I just intentionally killed a man. Shouldn't that freak me out? Of course, that man was Craig Taylor, who, as recently as yesterday, in my mind, intentionally ran me off the road knowing that his own son was in the car with me. He wasn't the kind of man whose passing engenders much mourning. At least not as far as I'm concerned. Still?

 

I'm not going to over think this, though. I did what I had to do. Now, I get to move on to my reward. I get Justin, without all the potential hassle that Craig would have brought us.

 

I decide to head straight from Craig's store to Justin's house. I can't wait another minute to be with him. I know that he should be home from school already. I don't know if the bimbo receptionist will have called Jennifer with the news yet or not. I guess I have some silly idea about being there to comfort Justin when he hears about his dad. Yeah, I'm way beyond caring about any ridiculous romantic drivel I might let myself indulge in these days. If it gets me to Justin, I no longer give a crap how lesbionic I'm being.

 

"Hello, Sunshine," I say as soon as he answers the door.

 

"Brian?" Luckily it's Justin who answers the door, since I hadn't really come up with anything intelligent to say to Jenn if she'd been the one who greeted me. "What the . . . ?"

 

"Oh my God! What happened? How? Oh, God. No!" Jennifer's screams from the kitchen interrupt the impending third degree that Justin was about to administer.

 

I follow him as he runs to his mother to find out what's the matter. Jennifer is standing in the center of the oversized suburban kitchen, staring at the phone clutched in her hand. She's not crying or yelling. She's in shock.

 

"Mom? Are you okay?" Justin asks as he cautiously approaches her. "Mom? Mom! What's wrong?"

 

"Justin. It's your father. He . . . he collapsed at work. That was Vickie from his office. Your father. . . your father, he's d-d-dead," Jennifer stammers out an explanation but all in all she's eerily calm.

 

Justin is likewise strangely calm, looking more confused than sad or upset. "He's dead?"

 

"That's what Vickie said. She said the coroner took the body and I . . . I guess I need to . . . I need to . . . What do I need to do?" Jenn's calm begins to falter a bit. "Molly. Where's Molly? I need to tell Molly. And Craig's mother, too. And, I guess I need to call the attorney. I can do that."

 

"Mom? Um, we need to go see dad first. We need to make arrangements," Justin says, holding his mother in a tight embrace.

 

And I watch, dumbfounded, as Justin and Jennifer sit together on the couch and calmly plan out a strategy as to how they're going to take care of this little 'issue'. There's no crying or yelling or loving protestations. Nothing I had expected. It's just eerie and quietly sad.

 

Plus, my whole, 'Be There to Comfort Justin' strategy is a complete wash. Justin hasn't looked at me once since he got the news. It's like I'm invisible. He and his mother are so absorbed in their own strange griefless mourning plan that no one else exists for them. This is not going the way I thought it would.

 

After several minutes, I clear my throat to get Justin's attention and he looks up as if amazed that I'm still there. I'm not even sure he remembers my name at that instant. Again, not the reaction I'd planned for.

 

"I'm so sorry, Justin," I say, falling back on conventionality. "Can I help with anything?"

 

"No, thank you, Brian. My mother and I can handle things. Um, can I call you later, maybe? We've got a lot to do and . . . "

 

I can't believe it - he's kicking me out. Justin gets up from the couch and lays a hand to my shoulder, gently guiding me towards the front door. There isn't even time for me to say goodbye to Jennifer - not that I got to introduce myself to her, either - but I'd planned on at least offering her my condolences. At the door, I start to put my arms around Justin, both to offer comfort and just because I love to feel him in my arms. But, he shakes his head at me and steps further away, grabbing the doorknob at the same time.

 

"I don't . . . Not now, Brian," he says brusquely. "I need to get back and help my mother. I'll talk to you later, okay?"

 

Before I can protest or even say goodbye, he's shoved me the rest of the way out the door and slammed it behind me.

 

Fuck! I'm getting a really bad feeling about this, already. This isn't right. I should have Justin in my arms right now. I could comfort him and hold him and kiss him till he felt better. Then I could have told him how much I cared about him and wanted to be there for him.

 

The Justin I knew in my past would have given almost anything to have me be more caring and demonstrative. Wasn't that one of his complaints when he ran off with the fiddler - that I didn't ever tell him I cared, that I wasn't demonstrative or romantic enough? Well, here I am. I'm ready, willing and fucking dying to be all demonstrative and he slams the door in my face? I just fucking can't win, can I?

 

I'm at a total loss as to what I should do at this point. By default, since I don't have a clue where to go, I end up at Woody's with a shot in one hand and a beer in the other. By the time Mikey and the rest of the gang get there three hours or so later, I'm already sloppy drunk. Which is worrying Michael since that's not my usual M.O.

 

But, then again, I've kinda lost track of what's 'usual' for me. I can't even remember if it's been six or seven re-try’s now. All I know is that I've been living this past year over and over again, each time trying something different, trying to get it right, and I've fucked up every time. So, regardless of what my 'usual' mode of operating might have been in one of those past attempts, I'm now so confused in my own mind about how I should be acting that I'm not even attempting to act ‘normal’. Fuck it. I don't even care enough to try to figure out what 'normal' should be.

 

"Brian? What the fuck’s gotten into you?" Michael whines at me in due course. "You're not usually this shit faced this early. What's wrong?"

 

Apparently I'm drunk enough that my brain no longer exercises any control over my mouth, because the words I hear myself speaking are NOT what I was planning on saying.

 

"I fucked up again, Mikey," I confess drunkenly. "I want him so bad, you know. I can't seem to work it though. First, I drove him off because I couldn't tell him how much I loved him. Then, the next time, I scared him off cause I DID tell him I loved him. Then I tried to go crazy, but that didn't work and I can't even kill myself 'cause I just keep on waking up anyway, Mikey. And, we had so much fun yesterday at the amusement park - that was fun, wasn't it? - but then his father tried to kill us and Sunshine was bleeding and all before I passed out. So, I figured this time I'd get rid of the asswipe father first, right? You'd think that would work, right? But it's still not working, Mikey. What the fuck am I going to do?"

 

"Um, Brian, what the fuck are you talking about?" my best friend demands, looking at me like I've grown a second head. "Who the hell is 'Sunshine' and what drugs did you take?"

 

That starts me laughing. "Sunshine doesn't exist yet, Mikey. He hasn't met Deb yet, so he's not Sunshine, he's still just a nameless twink. Only, to me he'll always be Sunshine. But I don't know if he's gonna meet Deb now or not. Craig was allergic to Tylenol you know, just like I expected. So now Sunshine’s gotta take care of the funeral and all. Maybe it'll never happen because of what I’ve done this time. But that's okay, just so long as he doesn't go to Prom, right?"

 

"Fuck, Bri. You're not making any sense. Come on, let's get you home. A few strong cups of coffee and a good nap and I'm sure you'll feel much better," Michael takes me in hand, pulling the empty beer bottle out of my hand and sliding my arm over his shoulder so he can lift me off my barstool and lug me out to my car.

 

I blink and when I reopen my eyes, I'm lying in my bed in the loft while Mikey struggles to pull off my boots and then my pants. He succeeds in undressing me and then rolls me under the covers, but I dart my hand up and catch his wrist before he can make good his escape.

 

"Don't go, Mikey. I don't want to be alone anymore. And I don't even know his phone number. That's hilarious, isn't it? You'd think after all these times I'd have learned his home phone number. But it just didn't ever come up."

 

"Who's phone number, Brian? Who are you talking about?"

 

"Fuck, Michael. I'm talking about Justin, of course. Wake the fuck up and listen, why don't you?"

 

"Justin? You mean that twink from last night? Why the hell would you want his number?"

 

"Because, he's not just some twink, Mikey. I love him. That's what I've been trying to explain all night. I love Justin and I want to be with him, but I keep screwing things up and I keep losing him."

 

"Whatever you say, Brian," Michael says, humoring me. "Why don't you just get some sleep now. Maybe you'll make more sense in the morning."

 

Michael turns out the light and crawls into bed, spooning up behind me. He's got his arm over me and it's comforting. It's not the body I want in bed with me, but at least it's someone warm.

 

"I probably won't make sense tomorrow either, Mikey. I don't even know if you'll still be here in the morning. I'll probably wake up with Justin again and have to start all over."

 

"Go to sleep, Brian. I'll be here in the morning. I promise," Michael whispers as I finally let my eyes drift closed, still unsure, despite his assurances, what I'll find when I wake.

 

*Beep, beep, beep*

 

I roll over and hit the button to silence the alarm, then happily curl around the warm body of the man in bed next to me.

 

"Morning, Sunshine," I mumble, kissing his sweet little ear as I speak and then following up with a series of light little kisses down the length of his neck as l press my achingly hard dick against his leg.

 

"Um, Brian? What are you doing?" asks a voice that is definitely NOT Justin's, causing me to practically jump right out of bed in surprise.

 

“Fuck! Mikey? What the fuck are you doing here? Where's Sunshine?" I demand as Michael stretches and rubs the sleep out of his eyes.

 

"Well, I WAS sleeping, that's what I'm doing here. Don't you remember begging me to stay last night?" Michael asks. "As for 'Sunshine', I have no idea, since you never got around last night to explaining who or what that is. As best as I could make out, Sunshine doesn't exist yet because Ma hasn't met him, and probably won't now because somebody named Craig is allergic to Tylenol. That's all I got out of your drunken rambling last night, Bri."

 

"Shit. Why don't I get a do over this time? This whole mess makes no fucking sense, Michael. Why don't I get another try this go around? Didn't I fuck it up badly enough? I don't have to live with this version, do I?" I rant as I pace around the bedroom, Michael following me with his eyes.

 

"You're still not making any sense, Brian. How the fuck much did you drink last night? You can't still be drunk, can you?"

 

"Shit," I say again in defeat, letting myself fall back into the bed. "No, I'm not still drunk, Mikey. I wish I was though. Now, what do I do?"

 

"Since it's Saturday, I suggest that the first thing we do is go back to sleep - sorry, I didn't know your alarm was set or I'd have turned it off last night. Then, much, much later, we'll get up, get some breakfast and then you can try to explain in English rather than drunken-brianese what exactly you were talking about last night. That's what we're going to do, Brian.”

 

And, since I don’t have any better suggestions about what to do, I opt to follow Mikey’s plan, and I let myself drift back to sleep. We finally wake again about 11:30. This time I check to see who’s in bed next to me before I start to make out with him. Unfortunately, it’s still Michael in my bed, not Justin, so I have to go to the shower and take care of my hard on myself. Then, while I’m drying myself off, I make a new plan of action - I’m going to figure this out, somehow, and get Justin back.

 

At the Diner, before I start on my breakfast - well, it’s more like lunch now since it’s already afternoon - I tell Debbie to put together a shitload of food for a take out order. That’s what you do when someone dies, right? You take the family food and flowers. So, I’m going to take Justin food and flowers, like a good, caring boyfriend would. I CAN do this whole caring, sympathetic, devoted lover thing if I want. It’s just that I never really tried before. This time though I’m going to do it right.

 

“What’s with all the food, Brian?” Mikey asks, reminding me that sometimes the boy is denser than platinum.*  

 

“Pay attention, Mikey. I told you last night, Justin’s father died. I’m going to take this stuff over to his house, because that’s what you do when someone dies. Right, Deb?” I ask, partly to get confirmation from my only source of motherly sentiments that I am, in fact, doing the right thing here.

 

“Who died, honey?” Deb bustles over, curious as always.

 

“The father of this trick Brian was with the other night died, Ma,” Michael answers for me. “But, I’m not sure why the hell Brian cares. He was just a trick. So, what’s with the food and shit, Brian?”

 

I hesitate to answer. Despite my drunken verbal diarrhea last night, I’m not sure I want to be explaining things to Michael anymore. One, I don’t think I CAN explain, since I’m still not sure what the fuck is going on. Two, we’re talking about Michael here - he’s still convinced that we’re both going to be perpetually fourteen and that we never need to grow up. How exactly am I going to explain that I want to grow up and have a real relationship with Justin to Michael? He doesn’t want to hear that about me. It would ruin his perfect image of me as this perpetual playboy. And, three, if I do explain, he’ll just want to interfere. So, I guess I’m better off doing this on my own, even though I kinda let a few things slip last night. But, I decide to cover up as best as I can and move on from there.

 

“He’s a nice, kid. That’s all, Mikey. I feel bad for him. No big deal. Don’t let it worry your tiny little brain,” I tell him as I grab the large bag full of take out boxes from Deb and pull out a wad of bills to pay for my load.

 

“But what about all that shit you were saying last night, Brian? That you loved him and all that? You were really freaking me out, Brian.”

 

“I said, don’t let it worry you. I was drunk. I was insane. Just forget everything I said, okay?”

 

"Are you sure you're okay, Brian?" Mikey's still asking as I walk out the door, ignoring his imploring tone.

 

When I show up at the Taylor abode, Jennifer happens to be the one who answers the door. She's dressed smartly, as always, her hair neatly coiffed and her makeup perfect. This strange form of WASPish grief is alien to me. I'm more used to the typical Irish wake mentality where any death in the family entails a lot of wailing and weeping, a few fist fights, and maybe even a little drunken singing. Instead, Jennifer is just calm, cool and life-as-usual collected.

 

"Hello, Ms. Taylor. I'm Brian Kinney. I'm a friend of Justin's. I was here yesterday when you found out about your husband. I didn't get to introduce myself or express my condolences."

 

"Thank you, Mr. Kinney. It's very nice of you to come by," Jennifer nods at me amiably.

 

"My surrogate mother packed all this food up for you," I say, handing the shopping bag full of food to her. "She's Italian, which means that she probably overdid it. But, Debbie means, well."

 

"Thank you, again. It's very kind of you, Mr. Kinney,"

 

"Please, call me Brian," I say with a dose of Kinney charm, determined to win her over as early in the process as possible. "Is Justin home? I'd like to see him if I could."

 

"Of course. Please come in, Brian. I'll go put this all away and I'll call him for you."

 

Jenn heads towards the kitchen, yelling up the stairs for Justin as she passes. I'm smiling, thinking 'so far, so good'. I can maybe work this after all. Which means I'm in a good mood right up until I see Justin coming down the stairs. But his dejected look and complete lack of enthusiasm at seeing me takes me down quite a few pegs pretty fast.

 

"Hey, Sunshine," I say as he nears. "Just wanted to check and see if you were holding out okay."

 

"I'm okay, I guess," he says, standing shyly a good five feet away from me.

 

I move forward and extend my arms, ready to pull him to me where I can hold him and thus satisfy my hunger to touch him as soon as possible. Justin, however, steps back almost as fast. He's looking around at the same time, apparently trying to figure out where his mother went. I settle for grabbing ahold of his arm instead, rubbing lightly through the fabric of his shirt.

 

"Brian, don't. Please," Justin says as he removes my hand from his arm. "My mother . . . She's got enough to deal with right now. She doesn't need me adding to her worries. What are you doing here, anyway? I said I'd call you."

 

"I wanted to see you," I answer simply enough, touching the back of his hand with one finger in lieu of his arm, since I just can’t seem to keep my hands away from him. “You didn't call and you never gave me your number, so I just came over instead.”

 

I want so badly to pull him into my arms right now. He looks so vulnerable and sad. I could kiss those cotton candy pink lips until he forgot he was sad, if he’d let me. I could do a lot more than that, if he was so inclined, but I don’t think he will be, even if I could get him somewhere alone. But I’m not ready to give up yet.

 

“Brian, I can’t do this with my mother here and all,” he says in a hushed voice.

 

“Then come with me. We can go somewhere and talk. Somewhere your mother isn’t,” I suggest.

 

“Yeah, I can guess exactly what your version of ‘talking’ would be like,” Justin says with the first hint of a smile I’ve seen yet today.  

 

“I’ve been told I’m a very good listener, you know,” I tell him with my own smile back. “I especially like to listen when you make those noises you do when I . . .”

 

“Mom,” Justin yells in the direction of the kitchen, interrupting before I can give him the full description of just what I plan to do to him to elicit those noises I wouldn’t mind listening to. “I’m going out for awhile. Do you need me to get anything?”

 

Jennifer steps back into the foyer right then and I’m glad that Justin and I are being wholly appropriate for once. She gives me a tight little smile that’s just full of questions like, ‘how, exactly, do you know my son, Mr. Kinney?’ Luckily for me she’s a bit too distracted by other events right now to pursue those questions. I would like, this time around, to NOT be the one that outs Justin for a change.

 

“No. I don’t need anything, Justin. Molly is at her friend’s house until 3:30 and there’s nothing else that I can do today. I feel a little lost, actually. I wish there was something I could be doing right now, but . . ." Jennifer responds.

 

“Maybe I should stay, then. I don’t want you just sitting here alone,” Justin starts to change his mind.

 

“No. That’s silly, Justin. Two of us just sitting here being sad is twice as useless as just me being here. You go, if you want. What were you planning on doing, anyway?”

 

Justin starts to sputter, at a loss for any explanation, but I swoop in and elegantly save the day.

 

“I thought I would take Justin to see my son, if that’s okay. Justin had volunteered a few days ago to babysit sometimes. I thought maybe this would be a good time to get him and the baby better acquainted and see if the plan will work out. Lindsey, my son’s mother, could definitely use a break every now and then. What do you say, Sunshine?” I ask, winking at Justin when I’m sure his mother can’t see.

 

“Sounds fine. I can’t wait to see Gus again,” Justin smiles at me, relieved that I came prepared with a good excuse. “Is that okay, then, Mom? I won’t be too long.”

 

“Go ahead, Justin. And don’t worry, Mr. Kinney, Justin’s a great baby sitter. He’s been helping me out with his sister from the day she was born. He’s great with kids.” Jennifer says, almost as relieved acting as her son now that she has a plausible reason for me to be asking to take her son out.  

 

“It’s Brian, please. And I know that Justin will be great with Gus,” I tell her, because it’s true, I do know this for a fact. “Ready, Sunshine?”

 

It doesn’t take long to get Justin in the car and drive far enough away so that we don’t run the risk of disabusing his mother of her son’s innocence. But as soon as I’m sure we’re out of suburbia proper, I pull the Jeep over to the side of the road, slide my seat back as far as it will go and then pull my Sunshine to me for that kiss I’ve been longing for so desperately. I just know I can’t wait even one more minute to claim those lips and feel that beautiful soft skin. Fuck propriety. I did the good boy thing for his mother, but I’m no angel and the good boy act is slipping fast.

 

“Justin,” I moan as he finally starts to show some enthusiasm, kissing me back almost as hard as he normally would. “I couldn’t wait to see you again. It was so hard keeping my hands off you at your mother’s. Fuck. I’m so glad you’re here with me.”

 

“Shhhh. Too much talk, Brian,” Justin says, as he unlatches his seat belt and crawls out of his seat and his pants at the same time, then insinuates his lithe little body between me and the steering wheel so that he’s on my lap and can kiss me all the better.

 

“Um, not that I’m complaining, Justin,” I try to say once he takes a break from sucking on my tongue for a moment or two. “But I really did mean it when I said we could talk if you wanted.”

 

“I don’t want to talk, Brian. I want you to fuck me and make me forget. Just make it all go away, please,” Justin mumbles as he works at the buttons on my shirt, pulling it apart till he can run his fingers over my chest, and driving me fucking wild with his touch.

 

“I’m happy to oblige, Sunshine,” I answer and proceed to fish a condom out of the arm rest console.

 

And, after that, there isn’t much talk at all, except for ‘move your leg’, ‘slide towards me’, and ‘Ouch, not there!’ - when was the last time YOU tried to fuck in the driver’s seat of a Jeep, hmmm? But Justin isn’t just enthusiastic about sex, he’s pretty fucking limber too. And, without too much trouble, about five minutes later, I’m happily reclined on the driver’s side seat, with a gloriously wanton Justin riding my cock for all he’s worth.

 

I’ve got a great view as I lie here, my hands on his slim hips helping to guide him as he moves up and down, his own hands gripping the roll bar overhead.  I love the feel of his ass muscles clenching and releasing my dick as he moves. He always was a natural at this. And, if he seems a little desperate because of everything, who am I to complain? We all deal with grief in our own way, but I have to say, I rather like Justin's way.

 

If we weren't so exposed, parked on the side of a damn highway like this, I'd happily lie here all day and let the boy play. But this might just be a stretch even for a veteran exhibitionist like myself, especially since we’re so far from Liberty Avenue and so close to the breeder burbs. So, I take matters into my own hands, literally, by grabbing onto Justin’s wonderfully thick cock and stroking him rapidly. His ecstasy level shoots through the roof at my touch, and I get to employ those famous listening skills of mine as Justin groans, moans, whimpers and chants my name as he rides my cock and I stroke his in rhythm. Fuck, he’s beautiful when he’s like this.

 

Too soon, I can tell he’s ready to shoot. He throws his head back erotically and I can feel his whole body tense for a moment. Then I feel the hot sticky cum shooting through my fingers and coating my chest. The mere look of lust on his face right then is all it takes to bring me over the brink too and I buck up into him giving him even more of a ride for a minute or two. As we both finish, Justin finally collapses onto my chest, panting but happy again.

 

Yes, this is more like it! I have my Sunshine back. Maybe I’ve worked things right, finally? Fuck, I hope so. But, for some reason, I still have this uneasy feeling in the pit of my stomach.

 

*For all you science geeks out there - like your’s truly - the densest metal is actually Osmium, but how many readers are going to get that reference, huh?

 

 

End Notes:

Just when you think everything’s going so well . . . the evil author comes up with another twist. I'm so twisty, I scare myself sometimes. But you'll have to wait for the next chapter to find out why Brian still feels like this isn't going to be the perfect outcome after all. I'm off to write. See you all soon. TAG

 

 

Chapter 10 - R.I.P. Craig by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

Maybe Brian actually got things right this time? Maybe killing Craig was a good thing? What do you think? Will this work out. Brian is hopeful. But, I don't know . . . I don't think killing your lover's father is really a good solid basis for a relationship. But, you never know. If Brian can keep it a secret from Justin, this might work . . . He he he! Read and see. Enjoy! TAG


P.S. I forgot to mention - Really good smut in this one, so beware if you don't like that kind of thing (Ha!).

 

Chapter 10 - R.I.P. Craig.

 

The funeral is on Thursday afternoon. That means I get Justin pretty much to myself for most of Saturday and Sunday. Jenn already took care of most of the funeral plans on Saturday morning, and there's not much else they can do over the weekend other than fend off well wishers, so Mother Taylor doesn't have any grounds for objecting to my borrowing Justin to 'babysit'.

 

We actually do take Molly and Gus to the park Sunday afternoon for a while, just to get 'The Mollusk' out from under Jennifer's feet for a couple hours. I bring Gus along more to maintain our 'cover' than anything, although I've always loved watching Justin and Gus interact. Molly is totally baby crazy by the end of the visit, too. It's a fun, stress-free outing for everybody. The only downside of it is that I have to be a good boy and keep my hands to myself the entire time, since we've got Molly.

 

Jennifer and Justin spend Monday morning at the attorney's office dealing with the legalities of Craig's Will and what's going to happen with the business. I convince Justin to come meet me for 'lunch' afterwards and he tells me that there weren't any big surprises: everything goes to Jennifer except for a certain amount to be deposited in trust funds for him and Molly. The business was already partly in Jennifer's name - after all, it was her family who gave Craig the money to start the business in the first place - so Jenn can just step right into Craig's shoes and run the company if she wants. Financially, between the business and Craig's life insurance, the family is set.

 

So then, why do I still feel so weird? Getting rid of Craig has been a good thing all round, so far. I mean, yeah, they're all sad about him dying and all, but nobody seems devastated. I hardly get the impression that the relationship between Jenn and Craig was all that passionate. And Justin and Molly liked their dad, but neither will be crippled with grief now that he's gone. Justin seems more upset about how hard this is on his mother than by his father dying. But, still . . .

 

After our lunch date - which comes complete with a lovely interlude of me plowing Justin's sweet, tight ass in the men's room at the Diner - he heads off to spend some time with Daphne, promising to bring her over to meet me after I get off work. I, of course, easily win Daph over. She's always been one of my staunchest supporters. I'm careful though not to slip up with any references to my past lives or things I know about her that I shouldn't. It all seems to work just fine, and by the time Justin and I drop her off at her house later, so that we boys can have a fun little sleepover of our own, she's clearly a Brian Kinney supporter.

 

It isn't until late that night that I finally see the first real signs that Justin is actually hurting. He's been all 'brave faced and strong' for his mother and sister every time I've seen him. And even when they weren't around, he's been maintaining the facade. But I know better than anyone how deeply Justin's feelings really run, so I should have been prepared. I wasn't ready for this, though.

 

I don't know exactly what it is that wakes me. I don't think he's making much noise. Maybe it's the lights on out in the living room. Maybe it's just his absence from the bed next to me. But something disturbs me out of a deep sleep and I immediately know that Justin isn't in bed.

 

I find him on the couch, huddling under a blanket, tears streaming down his face which is frozen in a grimace of pain. As soon as he sees me, he lets out an audible sob and tries to hide his face from me in the blanket. I maneuver myself onto the couch behind him and bundle him into my arms, but he still won’t show me his face. I can feel his whole body shaking as each sob wracks through him. I hate seeing Justin in pain, but for the moment, all I can do is hold on and let this run its course.

 

“Tell me, Justin,” I ask when the sobs have subsided to sighs and the tears are only a trickle.

 

“I was always such a disappointment to him. I never lived up to his expectations for me and now that he’s gone, I’ll never have the chance to prove to him that I can do it,” Justin says in a now almost calm voice.

 

“That’s bullshit, Justin. You can’t live your life always trying to satisfy what someone else wants from you,” I immediately respond angrily. “If your father was disappointed in you, that’s his loss. You are an amazing, talented, intelligent man and if he didn’t see that it’s because he wasn’t looking.”

 

“You don’t know anything, Brian. He was a good man, a good father. He gave all of us a good life and all he wanted was for me to live up to my potential. He was right that I always was taking the easy way out - messing around with my art rather than learning other more marketable skills or getting a job. I’ve always had it so easy and he worked so hard to support us and now he’s gone. I never got a chance to show him that I can be what he wanted me to be. I can.”

 

“Justin, listen to me. Are you listening?” I demand his attention.

 

“Yes, I’m listening,” he confirms with a lingering sniffle.

 

“You can only be what you are, not what someone else thinks you should be. Do you hear me. Don’t ever try to be something you’re not because someone else tells you that’s what’s ‘right’. And, if your father was trying to make you into something you’re not, then he really wasn’t such a good father - at least not in my opinion.”

 

“Fuck you, Brian. You didn’t know him.”

 

I want to tell him that, yes, I did know Craig and that he was an ass who would have only made Justin’s life miserable if I hadn’t done something about it first. But, I can’t say that, now, can I? I can only sit back and watch as Justin idolizes a man that I knew didn’t deserve it. But, since Justin never got a chance to come out to his father, Craig never had an opportunity to show that side of himself. So, what, Justin is going to forever mourn this great man he thinks his father was? Great. There’s nothing I can really do about that now though, is there.

 

“I just wish I’d tried a little harder while he was still alive, you know?” Justin continues. “I guess I never thought that I’d run out of time, like this. I figured that I’d have plenty of time to work on my art and find myself and everything and that I didn’t need to settle down and apply myself, like dad wanted. If I’d only known how little time I had. . .”

 

“Shit, Justin. You couldn’t have known that. How could you ever predict something like this - that something as innocuous as an allergic reaction would cause his death? Nobody ever thinks about shit like that,” I try to reassure him, still holding him in my arms to comfort him the best way I know how.

 

And, that’s how I know I’ve screwed up. As soon as the words are out of my mouth, I feel his body suddenly tense up and I hear him taking in a sharp breath. He’s very still then for several minutes before he turns to look up at me with definite confusion and a hint of suspicion in his beautiful sparkling blue eyes.

 

“I never told you it was an allergic reaction, Brian. How did you know that?”

 

"Didn't you?" I say, trying not to look like I'm obviously lying.

 

"No, I didn't. Mom and I only found out this morning," justin says in a quiet, questioning voice. "Everybody just thought it was a heart attack. But mom talked to the coroner this morning and he told her that it was actually anaphylactic shock caused by an allergic reaction. But I didn't tell you that. How did you know?"

 

"I must have heard it from somewhere, Sunshine," I offer, lamely. "I'm sure you must have said something about it earlier."

 

Justin doesn't say anything further about the subject, but I can tell he's still uneasy. He doesn't relax back against my chest the way he was before. Instead he's moved a little away and is sitting facing me with his knees drawn up to his chest forming a sort of shield. His eyes dart to my face then back down to his hands, which are restlessly playing with the blanket.

 

"You are right, though," I say after scrambling for a moment to find a way to distract him from my gaffe, "we never know how much time we'll have. So, let's not waste what we do have, Sunshine. If for some reason, all this isn’t here when I wake up tomorrow, then I don’t want to have missed my opportunity to show you how much you mean to me. Come on back to bed.”

 

I take his hand and pull him towards me off the couch. He only resists for a split second and then I feel him relax. He lets me tow him towards the bedroom without further protest. I guide him to the bed and let him lay down, gently pressing at his hip until he rolls to his stomach. Then, I fish around in the side table drawer and locate the small bottle of massage oil that I hoped would still be there - not that I’d ever thought to waste good fucking time with something as inane as a massage, but there had been that one masseuse I’d fucked who had offered that one time. . . .

 

I can feel the tension still in the muscles of Justin’s back. I quickly fill my palm with the sweet almond scented oil and rub my hands together to warm it slightly. Then, I start to knead at the knots of muscles under my hands. I know he usually carries his tension mostly in the shoulders, so I start there, lightly massaging until I find a tender spot and then working it with harder, deeper pressure until I feel the muscles relax. It takes me a long time - I don’t think I’ve ever seen him this tense before. But, when I’ve finished with his shoulders and back, he’s pretty much turned to jelly in my hands and from there, I know I can do whatever I want with my pliant little boy.  

 

Using a towel I find nearby, conveniently left there after we showered earlier, I wipe off most of the oil before I move on to step two of my plan. Then, I scoot down Justin’s pliant and tranquil body until I’m lying between his legs with my face at a good level to taste his luscious ass, something I’ve been wanting to do all night.  I begin by lightly trailing my tongue down from his lower back, down his crack and just tickling over his tight little pucker. Even as boneless as he is after the massage, that elicits a bit of a jolt out of him as well as a happy little moan.

 

I love rimming, and even more, I love rimming Justin. He tastes so good - his skin actually has a sweetness to it that I’ve never known in another man before. And I love hearing the delicious, needy, erotic noises he makes when I’m rimming him. He’s always responsive, but when I’m sucking at his hot little hole, he becomes so passionate and carnal that he spurs me on even more. I keep licking and sucking at the tender rim of flesh until Justin is writhing beneath me and only my body weight on his is keeping him in place. When I finally let my tongue venture inside, his whole body jumps involuntarily and I have to hold his hips in place with my hands to keep him still. His reaction makes me want to devour him like this forever.

 

But, Justin’s escalating moans and his struggling body soon make it clear that he wants more. I do too, but I also want to make this time last. We’ve already fucked a half dozen times today, including our lunch date earlier, so my need isn’t as frantic and immediate as it usually is when I’m with Justin. What I want now is something more intimate, more lasting. I want to make love to him, not just fuck him this time. And, yes, I realize that I thought that completely out of character thought and I don’t care a bit.

 

I quickly find a condom and some lube. After all we’ve done tonight, Justin isn’t in need of much more prepping, so I simply slide the condom on my dick, slather on some lube and slide right into his oh-so-welcoming ass. It feels so right - so tight and hot - that I could almost cum just from that initial caress as I push into him the first time. I have to stop for a moment, not only to let him adjust, but to get a hold of my own surging lust. I know then that if I really do want this to last, regardless of how many previous goes we’ve already had tonight, I need to make a few changes.  

 

First, I roll over to my side, pulling Justin with me so we never lose contact. In this position, I don’t feel the same need to drive into him. It feels more open and relaxed than when I’m fucking him into the mattress. It also feels more intimate, because Justin for once isn’t trapped under me by my body. We have to move together to get to our goal when we’re in this position. It’s freer, but more demanding somehow as well. And, it’s definitely more intimate, which is why I’ve never fucked any other guy in this position except Justin.

 

I’m bracing my body up on my elbow with my right arm and using my left to hold Justin to me. He’s half turned so that we can still kiss as I thrust into him from behind, steadily and slowly moving in and out as he arches his body towards me with each motion. His hand is gripping my thigh to guide me and pull me in deeper. Everything feels different from this angle and I feel pressures and pleasures in places I’ve rarely felt before. The pace is agonizingly slow but at the same time more erotic than anything you could imagine.

 

We move together in this manner for ages. The steady stimulation becomes almost painful but in a way that I never want it to end. Then Justin moves - it’s just a little sideways motion of his hips, nothing big or out of the ordinary - but that one novel little motion is all it takes to throw me over the cliff of sensation and cause my orgasm to rip through me. My nerve endings all explode without any prior warning and I can’t control the spasms that rip through my body as I cum again and again, somehow pulling Justin with me into his own climax.

 

“I love you, Justin,” I tell him as soon as I regain my breath. “You’re all I ever want. I want you to know that, in case something happens to me or I never make it back here again. I DO love you. Everything I’m doing, it’s for you. Please believe me.”

 

“I do, Brian. And, I love you too,” he whispers back, the stress of the past few days as well as the massage, washing over him at the same time so that his words fade as he falls asleep in my arms before I can even pull out or clean him off.

 

I’ve told Ryder I’m taking the day of the funeral off. I know it will be a difficult day for Justin. Even though I know he won’t want to let his vulnerability show, he’ll need all the support he can get to make it through this day.

 

We wake up early and head over to the Diner for breakfast, first. Debbie finally gets to meet Justin - well, in this timeline at least. She instantly dubs him ‘Sunshine’ at his very first full-wattage smile in her direction.  

 

“That’s strange,” Justin comments immediately. “That’s what Brian has been calling me, too. Did you two compare notes or something?”

 

“He didn’t discuss it with me, Sweetie. But then again,” Deb says, looking at me quizzically for a brief instant and then smiling her big mother hen smile, “Brian’s no dummy. He knows a good thing when he sees it. He doesn’t always listen to his instincts, but he should.”

 

“Thanks, I think, Deb,” I tell her and she slaps the back of my head affectionately as she moves away to place our breakfast order.

 

We hardly get a chance to start on our food, though, before Michael and Emmett show up and join us in the booth without being asked.

 

“Good Morning, Brian and Brian’s beautiful new friend,” drawls Emmett before he’s even completely seated.

 

“What’s HE doing here?” adds Michael, rudely.

 

“Good morning, Honeycutt. This is Justin. Justin, Emmett. Oh, and keep your hands off, Honeycutt - he’s taken,” I say acknowledging the tall southerner and ignoring my rude best friend.

 

“Don’t call me Honeycutt,” Emmett instantly barks.

 

“Brian. You didn’t answer me - why is this trick here? I’ve been trying to get ahold of you all weekend. Where have you been?” Michael interrupts before Emmett can add anymore pleasantries.

 

“Good morning to you, too, Michael,” I finally respond, realizing that Michael will not go away simply because I ignore him. “And, to answer your rather obnoxious questions: Justin is here because I asked him out to breakfast, he is NOT a trick, and you haven’t been able to reach me all weekend because I didn’t want to take your calls. There. Happy now?”

 

“Briannn,” is Michael’s already anticipated reply.

 

“You look even more dressed up than usual, Brian,” Emmett goes for the change of topic, I suspect in an attempt to help me stop Michael’s whining. “Are you off to some ultra-elegant locale this morning?”

 

“Unfortunately, no. I’m going to a funeral today,” I reply, wishing that Emmett hadn’t picked that particular change of topic.

 

“Oh, my! Who died? It wasn’t Mark Rossi, was it? I knew he was sick but I hadn’t heard he died. Oh my, God!” Emmett is off and mourning before I can stop him.

 

“Emmett, stop. It’s not Mark Rossi. And, why the fuck would you think I would bother to go to his funeral even if it was?” I say when I finally get a word in edgewise between his wailing. “It’s for Justin’s father.”

 

“Oh, Sweetie. I’m so sorry,” Emmett turns his crooning in Justin’s direction at this news, and I get to take a break from the conversation for a while as Emmett engages Justin in a discussion of everything wonderful Craig ever did.

 

Instead of participating in the Craig Taylor lovefest, I sit back and trade glares with Michael, who’s still fuming over my last remarks. I sense that mixed in with the anger, there’s also some questioning in those glares. I know he hasn’t forgotten my blathering from the other night’s drunken ravings. I’m worried that he’s going to confront me about Justin and make a complete ass of himself. I’m not completely sure what I said to him, either, which makes me doubly worried. Not only is Michael potentially going to cause problems between Justin and me simply because he doesn’t like the idea of me actually settling down with one man, but what if I also told him something about Craig? I wish I remembered better exactly what I said.

 

That’s when Debbie comes back over to the table, ostensibly to get Michael and Emmett’s orders, but more likely just to join the conversation and nose into whatever’s going on over here.  

 

“Good morning, boys. You guys ready to order?” she asks and promptly takes down the two additional breakfast orders. “How you holding up, Sunshine? If you’re still hungry, I can get you a sweet roll or something for dessert, Honey.”

 

“‘Sunshine’?” Michael immediately catches the pet name his mother’s given to Justin and I know I’m in trouble since I DO remember telling Michael about how ‘Sunshine’ didn’t exist yet since he hadn’t met Debbie.

 

“Actually, we have to go, Deb,” I say before Michael can voice any disturbing questions that I don’t want to answer, especially not in front of Justin. “Come on, Justin.”

 

I manage to bustle my blond away from the scene of potential disaster before Michael can say anything more. I know I’ll have to deal with Michael later, but I’m just glad that I was able to avoid the confrontation for the moment. Fucking Michael. Why the fuck did I always have to get drunk and babble to Michael about everything? I just hope that this time it doesn’t come back to bite me in the ass.

 

From the Diner, we head back to the burbs and I deposit Justin at Daphne’s house, where he was supposed to have spent the night. He’s pensive and quiet. I wish I didn’t have to leave him even for the short hour between now and the time when the funeral is scheduled.  But, I won’t out him to his mother if at all possible, so I have to play along with this farce for at least a little longer. All I can do is kiss him long and hard and hope that will tide him over until after the funeral when we can be together again.

 

After I drop Justin off and drive around aimlessly for about forty minutes, just killing time, I park my car in the lot at the Presbyterian church where the funeral service is being held and wait until I see the black stretch limo that’s bringing Justin and his family arrive. I follow the Taylors inside and quietly wait until the family has been greeted by the minister, the funeral director and sundry other pseudo-officials.

 

When they've finally been seated, I respectfully make my way to the front pew. I'm not really sure what I planned to do - I can't exactly join the family but I want to be there for them at the same time. Justin looks so ridiculously young in that off the rack suit he's wearing. It's so fucking endearing that I'm staring against the urge to take him in my arms and drag him out of here.

 

Luckily, before I can act on any of my wild ideas, Jennifer notices me and stands to greet me.

 

"Mr. Kinney - sorry, Brian - it's so kind of you to come today," Jennifer says as she shakes my hand, collected and prim as always, even at her husband's funeral.

 

"It's the least I could do. And, please, if there's anything you need, I'd be very annoyed if you didn't come to me first for help," I willingly offer.

 

"Thank you. But, you've already done enough. Even keeping Justin busy and distracted with all your babysitting lately has helped him more than you'd know. I'm sure if it weren't for you, he'd have just been moping around with me these last few days. Is your wife here with you today? I'd love to meet her and thank her as well," Jennifer says, craning her neck around to see if she can spot my mythical wife.

 

"I'm sorry if I gave you the wrong impression, Jennifer," I respond right away - I'm not going to out Justin, but I'm also not for one minute going to pretend to be anything I'm not. "I'm not married. I'm gay. My son's mother is an old college friend of mine who wanted a child, so we came to an arrangement. She and her partner, Melanie, are raising Gus. I'm still planning on being a part of his life, of course, but I'm not one of his primary parents."

 

"Oh, I'm, um . . . I didn't realize. . . " Jennifer stutters, clearly at a loss for any more articulate response.

 

"It's quite all right. You wouldn't have known," I try to put her back at ease, knowing that this isn't really the place to have this conversation. "Well, I'll take my seat. I just wanted you to know that you can ask me if you need anything."

 

"Brian, wait," I hear Justin say as soon as I turn my back and start to move away.

 

Justin rises and starts to follow me, grabbing my hand before I can move too far away. I look down at him and see that he's smiling sadly at me. There's something else there in his gaze, though, beyond the sadness. There's respect and what I would call pride.

 

"Please, sit with us," he asks, gently tugging at my arm to pull me into the pew with them.

 

I glance briefly at Jennifer who's looking at her son critically but not saying anything. But, since she also isn't saying anything against the idea, I nod at Justin and let him take me with him to a seat at the end of the pew beyond where Molly is sitting. I settle into my seat next to him, ridiculously happy to have been included.

 

He keeps my hand in a firm grip the rest of the service.

 

Craig was being cremated so there was no graveside service. Instead, after the religious service Jennifer had opted for a 'reception' period at the church, rather than having some kind of gathering back at the house. Again, the WASPish nature of these services, so proper and devoid of overt emotionalism, seems so alien to a recovering Catholic like myself - you mean to say you don't actually HAVE to invite your drunken relatives back to your house to eat and get drunker? I love this.

 

The funeral director sets the family up in seats near the doorway to the small hall where the reception is held before ushering the rest of the mourners in. I again start to move away, not wanting to intrude. This time, instead of trying to keep me with him, Justin kisses his mother, whispers something to her and then follows after me.

 

"I don't want to have to shake all those hands and listen to the hypocrites all saying how sorry they are," Justin tells me in a hushed voice as soon as we're out of his mother's range of hearing. "Please don't leave me there."

 

"Sure thing, Sunshine. You can come hide in the corner with me," I tease as I lead him away from the growing crowd surrounding his mother and sister.

 

We gravitate towards the large coffee urn set up on a table against the back wall. I fill two styrofoam cups with a brownish tepid liquid that's pretending to be coffee and hand one to Justin. After a brief sip, I quickly add about half the bowl of suger to the cup, hoping that might make the drink tolerable. I'm just about to offer the sugar to Justin as well, when I hear a vaguely familiar voice behind me.

 

"Taylor. Sorry about your dad, man," the laconic voice intones.

 

"Yeah. Thanks, Chris. It was good of you to come," I hear Justin's response as I turn around, only slightly curious about Justin's acquaintance until I see exactly who is standing there talking to my boy.

 

It's Chris Fucking Hobbs!

 

 

End Notes:

 

Don't you just LOVE cliff hangers! At least it keeps you readers coming back.  My only problem, as the author of this story, is trying to decide which way Brian is going to screw things up next. Each day I come up with at least 2-3 other ways he can mess things up. The hard part is actually coming up with a way he can fix this. But, still, I'm open to ideas. If you have an idea as to another novel way Brian can mess up his own or Justin's life, let me hear from you. I just might use your idea. This story could conceivably go on forever and ever if we all pitch in. Now, I'm off to write some more so I can get all of you off the Chris Hobbs cliff I left you on. TAG

 

 

Chapter 11 - How To Ruin a Perfectly Good Funeral by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

So, what did you think was going to happen when Brian sees Hobbs? Bet it's not what's actually going to happen in this chapter. Sometimes the true danger doesn't lie where you'd expect . . . I just can't wait to hear what you think about this chapter.  Hurry and read and then comment so I know if you like it or hate it! Hurry. Read faster! But, don't forget to enjoy! TAG


*****Heavy, knee-deep, up the wazzoo and coming out your pores, angst here. Be prepared*****

 

Chapter 11 - How to Ruin A Perfectly Good Funeral.

 

It's Chris Fucking Hobbs!

 

I'm paralyzed with shock for a minute or two. My brain isn't functioning well enough to help me devise any proper response to seeing this monster, especially when he's standing so close to my Sunshine. My first semi-rational thought is to grab Justin and run. My second thought is to quickly punch Hobbs' face in before he can get to Justin. While my primal mind is busy trying to determine which is the best course, I completely miss it when Justin starts to politely introduce us.

 

"Brian? You okay?" Justin interrupts my fight or flight determination with an elbow to my ribs. "I was saying, that this is a friend of mine from school. Our parents are . . . were . . . all members of the same country club. Chris, this is Brian Kinney. Brian, Chris Hobbs."

 

"Nice to meet you," Hobbs says, extending his hand in my direction.

 

There's no fucking way in hell I'm shaking his hand, though. "Yeah," is all I say, turning abruptly and focusing on my coffee, leaving the proffered hand hanging there.

 

Hobbs manages to cover pretty well though, acting as if he didn't notice my snub. "Your dad was a pretty decent guy, Justin. You know I used to caddy for him; he was always nice and he tipped real well. I'll miss seeing him around the clubhouse next summer."

 

"Thanks, Chris," Justin says, then the two 'friends' proceed to talk more about school and the 'club' and a dozen other things they have in common.

 

I meanwhile watch in utter dumb amazement. This monster, this savage homophobic freak, who has hurt and even killed Justin in my past lives, is standing in front of me amiably shooting the breeze with the man I love. I've harbored such hatred for this man for so long - I want to kill him, tear his limbs off with my bare hands, bash HIS fucking brains in with a baseball bat - I can't just stand here and watch him and Justin getting all buddy-buddy and even planning to meet up later for coffee. But there's nothing else I can do.

 

This Chris Hobbs hasn't ever hurt Justin. As far as I know he's never hurt anyone. He's just your average suburban teen whose primary concerns are to win the big game on Friday night, pass his Trig test next week and try to get laid over the weekend. He’s not acting hostile towards Justin at all. In fact, I’m getting a definite closet queer vibe off him as he stands just a little bit too close to Justin and touches his arm or his back just a few times too many. Fuck. No wonder Justin had a fucking crush on this guy for so long - my gaydar is hardly ever wrong, and it’s definitely pinging right now. In fact, as I’m thinking about it, I intercept a subtle glance from the creep checking out MY package, too. This is just way too fucking weird.

 

And, while I stand there contemplating this perceived threat, I completely miss the real danger which is even then approaching our little group from across the room.  It comes in the form of a buxom bleached blonde bimbo named Vickie.  No one would know from her innocuous appearance, clad as she is in a skirt that’s too short and a blouse that’s too low cut and much too bright a color for a funeral, that she’s the real threat to my happiness with Justin.

 

“Mr. Kinney! How nice to see you,” Vickie croons at me from more than ten feet away and her volume only increases as she gets nearer. “It’s so nice of you to come to Mr. Taylor’s funeral, especially seeing as you didn’t really know him all that well. Oh, hello, Justin. How are you and your mother holding up, dear? I’ve been just devastated myself. I just can’t believe it - your father was so young and vital and really very fit. I can’t believe he’s gone. It was just such a shock when it happened, too. Didn’t you think so, Mr. Kinney?”

 

“Uh. . . um. . . “ is what I hear coming out of my mouth - truly, it hasn’t been one of my more eloquent days.

 

“Brian? How do you know my father's secretary? And, what does she mean that you didn’t know my father all that well?” Justin picks up on the one incongruity in the greeting instantly.

 

"Well, you know dear, Mr. Kinney was there when it happened." Vickie plows on, answering Justin for me, as I listen helplessly while the bitch blabs. "He was meeting with your father about a new electronics line or something. Isn't that right Mr. Kinney? And then, when your father collapsed in the middle of their meeting, it about scared the living daylights out of us both, don't you know."

 

"Why were you meeting with my father?" Justin demands when he turns angrily to confront me as soon as Vickie stops for a breath. "You don't sell electronics. You didn't even know him, but . . . You were there when he died? Then you came to see me and were there when Vickie called, but you didn't say a word to me about it. You never said anything to me about this, Brian. And, you knew about the allergic reaction? My god, Brian. What the fuck?"

 

Shit! Justin's voice has gone dangerously low and quiet as he speaks - the way it does when he's not just mad, but furious. Justin is far too smart not to connect the dots immediately as soon as he hears the facts. He's already looking at me like he's never seen me before and has taken a couple steps back away from me. It's as if I'm some alien life form that he's afraid to get too close to. And, instead of sparkling blue eyes, he's looking at me now with a cold blue steel gaze that's filling with hatred.

 

"Justin, please, I can explain." The words sound so hokey even to me, I can't believe I uttered such a lame assed cliche, but I didn't really have anything else. "Can we just go somewhere private and I'll tell you everything. Please, Sunshine?"

 

"Fuck you, Brian. I'm not your fucking 'Sunshine'. And, I'm not going with you anywhere," Justin hisses at me, then pulls out his cell phone and hands it to Hobbs who's still standing next to us. "Chris, call the police. I think they're going to want to ask Mr. Kinney here some questions. I have to get out of here. I can't stand the sight of this. . . this fucking monster."

 

"Justin, please don't do this," I say, grabbing his wrist as he tries to pass by me. "It's not what you think."

 

"Don't touch me!" he yells loudly enough to draw all eyes in the reception hall. "Get your hands off me. You fucking disgust me. I can't believe I fell for your shit. I don't want to EVER see your face again. I said, LET ME GO!"

 

Justin wrenches his arm out of my grip and runs towards the exit. I start to follow right away, but Chris Hobbs and two other men are there, pulling me back before I can get more than a step. The last I see of Justin is the back of his blond head as he pulls the exit door closed behind him. The metallic clang of the heavy steel fire door ringing hollowly through the silent hall before pandemonium breaks out, ripping the quiet to shreds.

 

I don't really care what happens after that. There are police officers and detectives asking me endless questions, none of which I bother to answer. There are angry faces drifting around me, but none of them are Justin so I don't even look. There is a police car and rooms I don't recognize but none of it really matters. I've already lost the only thing in the world that ever mattered to me. I've lost Justin, again.

 

A lot of hours later, I'm sitting handcuffed to a table in another strange room somewhere. There are two police detectives with me, one seated across from me and the other pacing around the room. They've been asking me questions and using every tactic ever shown on television to get me to talk - threats, cajoling, nice guy cop routines, appeals to me to help the family reach 'closure', and more - but I really don't have anything to say. It's no use anyway, I can't fix this so why bother.

 

The one pacing cop gets frustrated finally and leaves. About ten minutes later, a tall uniformed cop opens the door and leans in. The seated cop looks over at him and they both get matching nasty smiles on their faces. Apparently, they both know something I don't, because I don't find any of this at all amusing.

 

"Chief Stockwell wants a confession on this one," says the leering cop in uniform. "Turns out the Chief was a golfing buddy of this Taylor guy. Bad news for you, Kinney. I'm supposed to tell you that the camera in this room just broke. You've got about fifteen minutes before its fixed, Richards. Make 'em good. Have fun."

 

The uniformed cop disappears and the door locks automatically behind him. The seated cop - Richards, I guess his name is - stands up and walks around the table to stand behind me now. His hands are resting on my shoulders and I can feel his acrid breath on my skin as he bends over me to whisper in my ear.

 

"You ARE going to talk, Kinney. This is your last chance to do it the way that doesn't involve you getting seriously hurt. Nobody's gonna care much if a fag like you has a bit of an accident in here. And, the Chief doesn't much care for your kind. He's not gonna care what the fuck happens to you. Especially not after you fucked over a pal of his. You gonna confess now or . . ."

 

The dickwad ends his sentence with a hard rabbit punch to my kidney that knocks me right off the stool I'm sitting on. Since my left wrist is still handcuffed to the table, when I fall, I pull it over with me. The edge of the heavy metal table crashes painfully against the side of my head and I see stars for several minutes. My ears are ringing so much that I miss whatever it is that Richards has been saying while he proceeds to kick me repeatedly in the stomach and the groin.

 

When I'm able to focus again on what's going on around me, I notice that I'm lying on my side on the floor, the table on its side in front of me, and there seems to be a growing pool of something wet all around me. The asswipe cop is still standing behind me raining kicks on my side and back while keeping up an endless stream of profanity. He's busy trying to come up with even nastier ways to call me a fucking fag, but he doesn't appear too gifted in the art of insults and eventually falls back on the tried and true: fairy, faggot, pervert, etc. Nothing I haven't heard before.

 

Oddly enough, the pain from the cop kicking me feels muted and distant, like it's happening to someone else. The only real pain now is coming from my temple where the table hit me as it fell. I reach up with my free hand and touch the tender spot, noticing the sticky wetness there. When I pull my hand away, I see it's covered with blood. That must be what this puddle is that I'm lying in now. It's blood.

 

'Hmmm? I always figured getting bashed in the head would hurt worse than this', I think as a red mist closes in around me before I finally close my eyes and let myself rest.

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<<7>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

"Aaaaagggggghhhhhhh!" I hear someone screaming. I also hear this annoying beeping noise that's going on in the background, but it isn't as loud as the screaming, so it's easier to ignore. Then, I hear a crash and the beeping noise stops. That's when I finally realize the screaming noises are coming from me and I abruptly shut my mouth.

 

"Brian? Fuck, are you okay? What's wrong?"

 

It's Justin, of course. He's standing next to the bed, gloriously naked, leaning towards me in concern. I can't really fully enjoy the vision standing there, however, since my mind is still full of images of that fucking police interrogation room and Richards kicking the shit out of me while I'm lying in a pool of blood. Not really the best thoughts to wake up to, I'm afraid.

 

I'm sitting up, leaning against the head of the bed, my knees pulled up to my chest, my arms wrapped around them and clutching at the blanket. I can hear myself sobbing and muttering. It's almost like I'm looking down on my body from somewhere outside of myself. I'm watching myself, but I'm not in control of what I'm doing anymore.

 

I'm also not really in control of time, either, it seems. The next thing I know, I see Michael, now hovering next to Justin, and they're both looking at me and talking quietly. Justin's dressed now, I notice unhappily. They both seem upset about something, but I can't focus enough to figure out what's bothering them.

 

"What the fuck happened? He was fine when I dropped you two off here last night?" Michael is saying, looking at Justin angrily.

 

"I don't know. Fuck! I don’t know what's wrong," Justin replies, he looks scared as shit and seems ready to bolt. "He was just like this when we woke up this morning. I didn't do anything, really. He's been like this for, like, an hour now."

 

"Brian? Brian, it's me, Michael. Snap the fuck out of it, Brian," Michael is saying and I can feel him running his hand down the side of my face and through my hair, obviously concerned about something. "Shit. Maybe he took something - did you see him taking any drugs after I left you?"

 

"No. I didn't see anything but that would explain it - if he's having some kind of bad trip or something. . . " Justin says, backing away from the bed.

 

"Shit, shit, shit. I'm calling an ambulance and taking him to the hospital. If he did take something, maybe they can pump his stomach or something," I hear Michael say as he reaches for his cell.

 

"I've gotta go, Michael. I'm already going to be late for school. I can't stay," Justin says, his jacket in hand as he hovers near the steps. "I left my number on the pad by the phone. Can you call me later and tell me how he is?"

 

"Yeah, whatever. Just go. Get the fuck out and I'll take care of this," Michael says, then he starts speaking to someone on the other end of his cell phone call.

 

"Brian? I've got to go," Justin has moved back to stand beside me, his hand hesitantly resting on my shoulder. "I'm so sorry about all this. I . . . I hope you're okay. Bye."

 

Justin leans in and tenderly kisses my cheek, then intently turns and walks away. I don't want him to go, but at the same time it's a relief to have him gone. I don't have to try to focus now that he's not here anymore. It's easier to just let go. So I do.

 

"Mr. Kinney? Brian? Are you back with us, Brian?" says a man with bad hair, ugly clothes and a white lab jacket.

 

"Hey! Son-of-Freud! It's been what - two or three lifetimes now? So how've you been?" I ask the man I now recognize from my prior attempt to get admitted to the psych ward at the hospital, realizing all of a sudden what that means and, by extension, where I must be now. "Looks like you finally believe me about being crazy. See, I told you so."

 

"Brian, I'm Doctor Richards. Do you know where you are?"

 

That makes me laugh. "You don't, by any chance, have a relative who's a cop, do you? If so, you should tell him that his attempt to kill the 'pervert fag' didn't work. See, I'm back! You just can't keep a good fag down these days, can you, Doc?"

 

"Please try to focus, Brian. Do you know where you are?"

 

"Well, let's see. Flimsy scratchy cotton gown that doesn't cover my ass, guy wearing a lab coat with a stethoscope draped around his neck, the smell of antiseptic, loud beeping machines nearby, big bed with metal railings? I'm going to guess its a hospital. Am I right? Love the restraints, by the way - it adds a real homey touch - although I usually prefer black satin ties myself. Leather straps really aren't very classy, you know. But, whatever gets you off, I always say."

 

So, I know I'm babbling, but for some reason I just don't seem able to stop myself. Freud, Jr. is writing furiously in his file. I really wish I could get an arm free because my fucking nose itches, but the restraints around my wrists are too tight. I'm a little worried though because I can't remember what my safe word is this time. Then I remember that I'm apparently in the hospital, so they probably don't let you have any safe words.

 

"Brian, you're drifting again. I really need you to focus for me, okay? Do you know what day it is?"

 

"Nope. I've got no fucking idea. I don't know what year it is even. Although, I supposed that technically it's still the same year it's always been, since the year just keeps repeating. But, if you're asking if I know how many times I've done this year, then, no I don't have a clue. I kind of quit trying to keep track of them about three lifetimes ago. It's way too confusing to keep them all straight. But, can I ask you something?  How am I supposed to know what I'm supposed to know and what I'm not each time?  That's where I keep tripping up, you see. It's just getting so confusing."

 

"Okay. Can you tell me who is the current President, Brian?" Son-of-Freud asks, ignoring my ramblings completely.

 

"Boring, boring, boring. Your questions are completely irrelevant, Doc."

 

Freud keeps asking his questions, though, even though i’m no longer listening or responding. I'm already tired of this game and the stupid questions. I think maybe I'll take a nap - I feel so fucking tired. But then I remember a question of my own that's vitally important, and I immediately interrupt the Doc.

 

"Where's Justin? He's still okay, right? He didn't go to Prom yet or get run off the road by his father or anything?" I don't think I'll be able to rest until I know that Justin's okay. "I know he said he didn't want to ever see me again, but I have to know. Please, Doctor, tell me that he's alright."

 

"I don't know who this 'Justin' is, Brian," Freud finally responds to my imploring. "You've mentioned that name several times over the past few days since I started treating you, but you still haven't explained who Justin is. Tell me about him, Brian."

 

But I can't. I can't tell this stranger about Justin. It hurts too fucking much to talk about him, to think about him. I can already feel tears building up at the corners of my eyes and starting to trickle down at the mere thought of what I no longer have.

 

"He's my Sunshine. And I've lost him," is all I can say through my sobs.

 

 

End Notes:

 

So, did you like it? Did I trick you by using Chris Hobbs as my 'Red Herring'? Who'd a thunk the blond bimbo would be the one to bring it all crashing down? If you really did see that one coming, you must be psychic!  Now, it's off to deal with poor traumatized Brian. The question is will he ever be the same after this experience? Will he ever get his swagger back on? Help. How do I get back to our true Brian? I'm writing, writing, writing. See you soon. TAG

 

 

Chapter 12 - Getting Back to The Living by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

My readers are just so smart - so many of you guessed what was going to happen in the past chapter. I doubt you will have forseen this one though. Probably because you wouldn't want to see Brian like this. I don't either, but this is where the story has taken me. I promise to bring the real Brian back soon. But, he has to get through this horribleness first. Keep reading and I promise that we'll get there. I swear on a stack of Brians. Enjoy! TAG

***Angst Alert - Still so much angst that It's almost unbearable, I'm afraid ***

******Also - Topsy!Justin Alert - Don't like, don't read, folks ******

 

Chapter 12 - Getting Back to The Living.

 

Time seems to behave strangely here in the hospital. Whole days seem to slide by unnoticed. Then, some small trivial happening will pop through to my consciousness for a brief time before another large block of time disappears. I'm sure this is partly due to whatever medications they're giving me. I think they're sedating me - I vaguely remember getting a little violent a couple times, but I don't really remember why. At least I'm no longer restrained in my bed. Mikey brought me some clothes and I'm allowed to walk around now.

 

Right at this moment I'm still sitting on my bed though, watching through the window at the streams of cars driving by on the freeway. My revery is disturbed though by the familiar voices in the hallway. I didn't know Mikey was coming by today, but that's definitely his voice. I can't help but listen, but even then, the words don't seem to really register completely.

 

"Are you sure about this, Doctor? I just don't know if it's such a great idea. Brian barely even knows this kid. They only met the night before he had his breakdown. Why would Brian care so much about this one trick?" Michael is complaining, as usual.

 

"I don't know why he's so concerned about this one man. The human mind is quite complex and I wouldn't presume to tell you I understand why it causes some people to do the things they do," Richards' voice replies in his typical 'I'm a doctor and therefore know so much more than you' tone. "But, we've talked about this. Brian is fixated on this man. He talks about him almost constantly. I think it's important for his recovery for Brian to see him. Maybe then we can piece together a bit more about why this has happened and hopefully help your friend to recover."

 

"Fine. I just don't understand any of this. One day Brian's fine, and then the next he's . . . like this. It's just hard to see him this way, you know," Michael sounds so sad, and I'm sure it's my fault, which would make me feel guilty if I still had any real feelings left.

 

"I know it's been difficult, but maybe this will help," the doctor advises, effectively quashing any further objections from Michael. "Why don't you two wait in the lounge and I'll bring Brian out."

 

Doctor Richards comes into my room then, and tells me I have visitors waiting in the lounge. I follow him, not because I really care about seeing Mikey, but because it's the easiest thing to do. I mostly do as I'm told here, since deciding what to do on my own is far too tiring. As it is, I feel half asleep pretty much all the time anyway.

 

But when we get to the lounge, I'm instantly awake and alert. That's because the first person I see when we enter is Justin. He's here. I can't believe he's actually here. Of course, I have no idea what to say to him, but that doesn't matter, just so long as I can see him and maybe even touch him?

 

"Justin." I say his name reverently.

 

"Hey, Brian," he says right away, smiling at me with that heartbreakingly beautiful smile. "You look good. I wasn't sure if you'd . . ."

 

He falters, clearly uncomfortable and not knowing what to say either. He looks aside at Michael for encouragement but Mikey just shrugs, then gets up and walks off. It's almost too much, just seeing him after all this time and I'm not sure I won't break down into a sobbing mess. But, I don't want to - I don't want to drive him away. I have to somehow pull myself together enough to keep Justin here a little longer.

 

"I'm glad you came, Justin. I . . . " I start but don't know how to end my sentence - I love you, I miss you desperately, I want to fuck you so badly right now my balls ache - all seem somehow wrong.

 

"I've wanted to come visit for a while now, Brian," Justin rescues me and the conversation easily. "I've been really worried about you. I ran into Lindsey and Mel on Liberty Avenue a few weeks ago and they've been keeping me updated on how you're doing. Oh, yeah, before I forget, I brought you something."

 

He hands me a scroll of sketch paper tied with a ribbon which I open. The picture inside is one I've seen before - Lindsey holding Gus in her arms. It's a beautiful sketch and seeing Gus makes me almost want to cry.

 

"It's wonderful. Thank you, Justin. How is Gus? I can't see him here - they don't let children visit. Is he doing okay?" I ask, grasping at conversational straws.

 

"He's perfect. God, he's growing so fast though. You'll be amazed when you do get to see him at how big he's getting. . . " Justin says then proceeds to tell me everything he can about Gus and the girls and everything else.

 

We simply talk after that and it's refreshingly easy. He tells me about Daphne and school. He tells me about the antics Molly has been up to lately. I ask about his art and he tells me proudly about Lindsey getting him a spot in the GLC art show. Talking to him just feels good and real and not difficult. I almost feel alive again. And, when he moves to sit next to me on the couch so he can show me some photos of Gus that he has on his phone, I put my arm around his shoulders and I relax for the first time in weeks. I think I even smile a little while we look at the photos.

 

All too soon, though, Michael and the doctor come back and interrupt us. The doctor says that that's enough of a visit for now and he doesn't want to overtire me. I want to protest but Justin's already getting up and preparing to leave.

 

I suddenly can't breathe right. I feel like there are steel bands around my chest that are crushing my lungs and preventing me from getting enough air. I'd ask for help but I can't get enough oxygen to form words. Michael is talking to the doctor a few feet away so they probably wouldn't hear me anyway. Justin sees, though, and he must somehow understand. He comes over to me immediately, reaches for my hand and pulls me up to stand next to him. He puts his arms around me and he squeezes me tightly, tilting his face up so our lips meet briefly. I can breathe again after that.

 

"It's going to be okay, Brian. I'll come back again on Friday. I promise," Justin whispers and then kisses me fiercely once before turning to follow Michael and the doctor out through the doors of the closed ward.

 

After that I start to be alive again. Justin comes to see me every Tuesday and Friday right after school. I spend most of my time counting the hours till his next visit. He brings me pictures of Gus, drawings, even food to try to tempt my appetite since he says I've lost too much weight. But more importantly, he brings himself. I get to see him, touch him, smell him and I know he's okay, which helps me to be okay. I get other visitors too - Debbie, Lindsey, Michael - but the only visits that I couldn't live without are with Justin.

 

Eventually my four months of insured inpatient care are up. My health insurance won't pay for further inpatient care and I'm told I'm being released at the end of the week. Doctor Richards isn't happy because I'm still refusing to talk to him or any other therapist about what happened to bring me here. I have actually talked through a lot of shit about my family and my crappy childhood with Richards, so the stay hasn't been completely wasted. But, if I ever want out of here, I know not to bring up the whole time traveling thing. I've heard very bad things about long term mental health facilities and I'm not interested in landing in one - which just might happen if I were to try to convince Richards that the trauma I suffered causing my 'breakdown' occurred in another time/space/dimension.

 

I'm not completely sure I want to return to the loft all alone, though. What will I do all day? I don't think I'm ready to go back to the stress of the advertising business. I still have another six weeks of disability insurance so I don't have to go back to work right away. But if I don't, what will I do? I've never NOT worked - at least not since I was fifteen and got my first part time job. I don't do daytime television and I have no hobbies, unless you count fucking as a hobby.

 

I guess Justin can tell something is wrong when he arrives on Tuesday. He asks me at least a dozen times what's wrong before I tell him about getting released on Friday. He thinks it's wonderful. He prattles on for at least ten minutes talking about how great it will be when I'm out of here and the things we can do together outside before he sees that I'm not as enthusiastic about the prospect. With that amazing sense of intuition he has, it only takes a couple of seconds, once he does notice my reticence, before he puts it all together and knows precisely what the problem is.

 

"Oh! Shit. You can't go back to the loft all alone," Justin exclaims.

 

"Where else would I go," I ask, and for once I'm not even being facetious, because I really would like to know if he has another idea.

 

"I didn't mean you can't go back to the loft. I just mean that you can't go there alone. It would be just too big and empty with only you there all the time," he says and then falls silent for a time, clearly thinking hard.

 

Justin is subdued for the rest of the visit and I feel bad that I've worried him. I'll be fine. I've been alone almost my entire life and I've done just fine. Well, mostly fine, up until the last few years/lives, that is. But, Justin shouldn't have to worry. None of this is his fault.

 

"What time are you being released on Friday," he asks right before he leaves for the day.

 

"I don't know. Probably in the morning sometime, I'd guess," I answer.

 

"I'll be here. Don't leave until I get here, okay?" Justin says as he kisses me lightly on the lips, which he always does before he goes.

 

"You have school, though?"

 

"I can miss one day, Brian. Just don't leave till I get here, promise?"

 

And I promise him, of course. It's Justin and I never have been able to deny him anything. Why would I start now?

 

Friday morning arrives and so do Michael and Debbie. They help me pack up the few personal items and clothing I have here at the hospital. Then we wait for the doctor to sign off on my release and then we wait some more for the pharmacy to fill all my medication prescriptions. Then there's nothing else to do and they want to get going. But I promised to wait so I just sit there.

 

Justin shows up right when Michael is starting to get unmanageable. He's got a large duffle bag with him, along with his usual messenger bag. He's also sporting a darkening bruise on his face and a cut on his lip.

 

"Sunshine! What the hell happened to you, Baby?" Debbie is the first to exclaim at the unwelcome sight.

 

"It's nothing, Deb. I just got in a fight. I'm fine," Justin says, predictably trying to avoid the subject. "Sorry to keep you waiting, though. Ready to go, Brian?"

 

I'm ready, now that he's here. I let myself be trundled out of the hospital wing and downstairs where we wait at the front entrance while Michael brings my Jeep around. Then we all pile in and before you know it I'm back at the loft.

 

I'm not really sure what emotions are going through me as we ride up in the elevator and then as Michael unlocks and opens the door. I'm glad to be home, I guess, but I'm also afraid for some reason. I don't have anywhere else that I want to be though, so I follow the rest of them inside and look around at the big empty place.

 

"We did some shopping for you yesterday, Sweetie," Deb is saying, opening the fridge door to reveal that it's fully stocked. "I didn't know if you'd feel up to coming to the Diner or not, not right away at least, but you have to remember to eat. Are you sure you don't want to come stay with me for a little while, Brian?"

 

"I'll be fine, Debbie," I tell her for the umpteenth time that morning.

 

Michael and Debbie putter around in the loft for several more minutes. I just sit calmly on a stool at the kitchen island watching them and waiting. Justin's sitting next to me, not saying much either. He holds my hand, though, and smiles at me a lot.

 

I'm getting the distinct impression that Justin has plans for me as soon as the Novotny's leave, and I'm more than willing to put those plans into action - it's been a long, long four months. I haven't gone this long without sex since I was fourteen. All I can think about right now is getting Justin naked and into my bed. I think Justin's thinking about the same thing. And, when the tip of his pink tongue darts out, wetting his bottom lip seductively I moan aloud. Deb at least gets the message at that point and quickly bundles Michael out, both of them kissing me goodbye as they leave, with many hurried directions about not forgetting to eat and calling if I need anything.

 

The second the door clangs shut, Justin leaps off his chair and onto me. We've kissed and petted a bit during his visits at the hospital, but we were never alone like this before so there was never the opportunity for more. It feels so marvelous to have him in my arms now, his body pressing urgently against mine. His lips are everywhere, kissing, licking, biting at my neck and my jaw and then my mouth. He always did have the softest, most sensual lips on the planet.

 

"I've been wanting to do this for so fucking long," Justin says finally, smiling up at me as his hands find my zipper and start to undo my pants. "Every time I was at the hospital all I could think about was wanting to suck your dick, Brian. Shit. It's still just as fucking beautiful as I remember."

 

That's the end of the conversation for a while though. Justin gracefully sinks to his knees and before you know it his mouth is around my dick and he's sucking and licking and I'm in fucking heaven. Maybe that old saying about absence making the heart grow fonder is true, because after four months of neglect, my dick is simply loving this. I love it too, relishing the feel of Justin's soft hair playing between my fingers, his warm mouth on my cock and his firm hands gripping around my thighs.  Fuck, I missed him so fucking much.

 

Needless to say I only last about two minutes - its been a really long time, you know, and jerking off alone in a hospital bed is no substitute for a Justin Taylor blow job. I cum long and hard, shooting over and over, and I'm a little amazed how hungrily Justin laps it all up. I guess he was as needy for this as I was after all.

 

When he finally rises, wiping at his lips, they’re fixed in a huge grin. But I notice immediately that something is wrong. There's a thin trickle of blood coming from where his split lip has opened up again.

 

"Justin, you're hurt," I say, reaching for a nearby kitchen towel.

 

"It's nothing, Brian," he says, wiping away the trace of blood. "Really. Stop looking all concerned. It's just a split lip. I'll survive."

 

"So, are you going to tell me what really happened?" I ask him as he tosses the towel away once the bleeding has stopped.

 

"Nope. At least not till you've fucked me. I'm not wasting all this uninterrupted Brian time on talking. I've been waiting four months for you to fuck me, Brian. So," he says as he pulls his shirt over his head and starts to unbutton his jeans, "do you want to talk, or what?"

 

His jeans puddle at his feet and he kicks out of them easily. I note with pleasure that he's not wearing underwear. I opt for the 'or what' immediately, moving towards him and indulging myself by letting my hands roam over all of that perfect creamy skin. His hard, thick dick is jutting out proudly in my direction and I have a very tough time not sinking to my own knees and worshiping him accordingly. But that's not what Justin wants. He wants me to fuck him, to fill him up and take possession of him. I can definitely do that.

 

We make it back to the bedroom and Justin sprawls on the bed, lying there on display for me while he strokes himself, waiting not so patiently for me to get rid of my clothes. As soon as I'm naked, he reaches up and gently pulls at my dick to lead me towards him. Fuck it. He can lead me around by the dick anywhere he wants.

 

Especially if where he wants me is on top of him. Which is where I finally end up, kneeling between his thighs, his legs wrapping themselves around me and pulling me towards him even more. I only have time to get the condom on and apply a bare minimum amount of lubrication before he's guiding me into him without any other preparation. I know it's going to hurt him, but he's too greedy and impatient and he won't let me pull back.

 

"Please, Brian. I need you right, fucking now. Don't stop, please." I hear him moan.

 

So I comply with his demands and let myself slide into his tight, warm depths, going as slowly as I can, until I'm all the way in as deep as I can get. I hear him hiss in pain but he's moaning and bucking up into me at the same time. Then he's tapping at my hip, ordering me to move.

 

It feels so fucking amazing and it's been so long since I've had Justin. I can't really keep myself to the slow and gentle pace I'd planned. Instead, I grip tightly onto his hips and fuck him hard, thrusting into his ass as deep and fast as I can, over and over. All rational thought has escaped me. I just keep ramming into him. He's not complaining though and I can feel him arching to guide me deeper and take more of me into him.

 

It's over much too soon though. Justin cums without me even touching his dick. One minute he's just there and I feel ropes of thick sticky cum drenching my chest as his ass contracts tightly around my cock. That drives me over the edge as every nerve cell in my body fires instantaneously, my mind goes blank and I freeze while my own cum fills the condom. Then I collapse onto the slim sated body beneath mine, revelling in the sensation of his legs slowly sliding down my hips and his arms trailing down my back till we both relax into one big heap of fucked out flesh.

 

I start to roll off him then, sure that my weight is crushing him. He stops me, though, holding me to him tightly.

 

"I hate it when you pull out, Brian. I wish you could stay inside me forever," Justin murmurs as he nuzzles tenderly at my ear. "When you're inside me I feel complete. Whole. And when you pull out I feel so empty and abandoned. Please. Just stay for a while longer."

 

I wish I could stay inside him forever, too. I need this connection even more than Justin does. I wish I could feel complete and whole again. But, after everything I've been through, I'm feeling more empty than you can imagine. Being home, in bed with Justin, helps a lot, but I still feel so vulnerable and raw. I don't feel complete.

 

I know what I need, but it's hard to bring myself to ask for it. All those years of conditioning, working hard to be the Stud of Liberty Avenue and keeping my reputation intact, kind of skew your perspective. But I remind myself that I haven't been that person in several lifetimes now. I shouldn't let the person that I once was control the life of the person that I am now. I've always said there's nothing wrong with getting your needs met . . . And this Brian Kinney needs to be taken care of and wants to be made whole.

 

"Justin," I say when I finally do pull out, grabbing another condom and tentatively handing it to him.

 

But I can't say it. Instead I show him what I need by rolling onto my stomach and pulling a pillow over to brace under my hips. I hear his breath catch and then I can feel his hand caressing slowly down my back and over my ass and down my thigh. I spread my legs further apart to give him better access and then I sigh when I feel him moving to cover me with his strong, slight form, his hand already coated in lube and gliding up to work at my hole.

 

Justin's a good lover. He's gentle and goes slowly at first until I've adjusted. He's right, too, about how good it feels to be filled like this. I love the sensation of his thick, hard cock up my ass making me feel claimed and wanted. Right then I'm needed and, yes, whole. But it doesn't last for long because, as he was complaining before, I just feel abandoned again when he's forced to pull out.

 

Afterwards, I'm lying with my head on his chest, his arms draped casually around me. Somehow we've switched roles. He's become my protector now. I don't hate it, but it does feel strange. I shake off my uneasiness though because I don't want to ruin this near perfect moment.

 

"When do you have to leave," I finally ask, noting that somehow the time has flow by and it's getting late, the early winter sunset not far off.

 

"Never," he says with a defiant air. "I'm staying here. For as long as you need me. That's what the duffle bag is all about. Unless, that is, you don't want me to stay . . ."

 

"Of course I want you to stay, but how . . ." I ask, moving so I can see his face better.

 

"I didn’t want you to have to come back here alone. And I knew you would never agree to go stay with Deb or Lindsey. So, I . . . well, I told my parents last night that I was gay and that I was coming to stay here with you for a while," he blurts out, all in one breath.

 

"You did what?" I'm just a little shocked by his announcement, although I'm sure I'm not nearly as shocked as his parents had been the night before. "What did they say? Are you okay with all this? Fuck. This is huge, Justin. You didn't have to do this for me. I would have been fine."

 

"I didn't do it just for you. I did it for me. They were going to have to find out sometime, right? Now's as good a time to come out to them as any, I figured. They didn't take it all that well, though. At least my dad didn't. Mom just seemed a little shocked. But dad got . . . well, let's just say he's in denial and leave it at that."

 

"He hit you?" I say, half question and half plain statement.

 

Justin shrugs. "It's not that bad, really. He just slapped me. I probably deserved it, I was kind of mouthing off."

 

"What did you tell them about me?" I can't help but be curious.

 

"I told them you were a successful ad executive. That I'd met you several months ago and we'd been seeing each other ever since - I didn't want to get into the whole hospital thing with them, you know. But I did tell them that you'd been sick and that I wanted to come stay with you until you were better. I think that's what my mother objected to more than anything. But I pointed out that I was eighteen now and I didn't really need their permission."

 

"Hmm. I'm sure that went over well. I had a similar conversation with Jack once. It ended with me getting tossed out of the house if I remember correctly,"

 

"Sounds like my father and yours would get along just great," Justin laughs humorlessly. "My dad said that I could come stay with you if I liked, but then I needn't bother coming home again. Oh, and he used a lot of unpleasant epithets like fairy and faggot and pervert. That's when I called him some names back and he slapped me. Then he and Mom started fighting, too. I just wanted out of there at that point, so I packed up a bag and went to Daphne's for the night."

 

"Shit. I'm sorry, Justin. That sounds even harsher than usual. Are you okay?"

 

"I'm fine. Especially now," he says, squeezing me tighter. "I'm sure Mom will work on him and they'll eventually come around. I probably should have eased them into the whole gay thing a bit more gradually. But it's done and I can't take it back. And now I can stay and take care of you and I don't have to worry about my stupid parents or their hang ups. I'm all yours for the foreseeable future."

 

 

End Notes:

 

Brian has Justin back and they're together in the Loft! Yay! Right? Wrong. Sorry, this isn't the right life for Brian either. We need our swaggering, proud not vulnerable Brian back. I'm working on it. Really. TAG

 

 

Chapter 13 - Who Is This Guy? by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

Uuurgh. I hate this Brian. I don't know how he managed to show up in my story. I certainly didn't plan on having a sad vulnerable Brian, but here he is anyway. Sometimes I think our stories write themselves without consulting us authors. But I'm determined to get rid of this Brian and help him back to his old (sorta) self. He's pretty much hit rock bottom in this chapter. It should be all uphill from here. So, read on if you dare to see how Brian manages to get himself back on track. Enjoy! TAG

Chapter 13 - Who Is This Guy?


That's all it takes. Justin is officially moved in with me from that point on. Justin goes to school during the day while I work out, surf the web, watch TV or whatever. Sometimes I even go out to the Diner or to see Lindz and Gus. Mostly, though, I just stay in and wait till Justin gets home. As soon as he gets home, we fuck. Then he makes dinner, we eat, we fuck again, we read or watch TV or I help him with his school work, then we go to bed and fuck some more. It's pretty idyllic, at least at first.


Eventually I have to go back to work. It's not easy. I've been out of the game for six months and I feel rusty. I seem to have lost that killer edge too. I'm not the same person I was before the . . . well, just before. I keep wondering ‘Who is this Guy’ - the one I’ve turned into that I don’t even recognize half the time. I don’t really have any answers though. Needless to say, things aren’t going all that smoothly at work.


I seem to get a lot more stressed out these days, too. Well, maybe I used to get just as stressed out before, but back then I used to handle it differently. If work got to be too much, I’d just go out, get drunk, get stoned and fuck as many guys as I could lure to the back room. But I don’t do any of that any more.


Justin has been trying to get me to go out more lately. I’m worried that he’s getting bored. Ironic, isn’t it - he used to beg me to stay home for just one night every so often and now he’s begging me to take him out. We still go to Woody’s occasionally to have a drink with the rest of the guys, but I don’t drink very much or do drugs and I really don’t enjoy going to Babylon or the other clubs any more. I won’t say anything to Justin, let alone any of the others, but I get sort of panicky feeling sometimes with all the loud noises and wild lights. I totally see what Justin was dealing with after he was bashed and I’m more amazed than I can say at how quickly he recovered. I don’t think he’ll be able to say the same thing about me. Justin’s always been stronger than me emotionally.


I’m not really interested in other guys either - now that I have Justin back, especially after everything I went through to get him, I’m just not willing to screw it up with some random fuck. Nobody’s really commented that much about my big change in attitude. I guess my little breakdown and four months in the hospital was enough to convince even this crowd that I deserve the right to change that part of my life. Michael will still occasionally point out a hot guy to me as if to tempt me with some forbidden fruit, but I just can’t get up any enthusiasm for any of them so he doesn’t push it. Sorry boys, Brian Kinney is off the market.


But, without the booze, the drugs and the boys, I don’t have any outlet for the stress. All I can do is just hold on for now, I guess. Justin has been pretty wonderful through all this. But, even he is starting to show some irritation by this point. The other day we had a fight over something - I don’t even remember what it was about anymore - but I do remember that he said I was being too clingy. Me? Brian Kinney being ‘clingy’? Fuck. Where exactly did I lose my dick anyway? I’m pretty sure I had it around here once upon a time.


I get what he’s saying though. I have been a bit. . . . needy lately. I shouldn't have given him such a hard time the other night when he got in so late after going to that party with Daphne. I was the one who told him to go - fuck knows I didn't want to go to some high school beer bash. And I really do want him to go out and enjoy himself. I know he's young and deserves to have fun, it's just that I got worried when it started to get late and I didn't know where he was.


He also complained that I was hanging all over him the other night when we were out at Woody's. I admit it, but I had a very good reason. I saw someone there that made me just a little more than usually insecure - Ethan Gold had been there with a crowd of artsy types. I don't think Justin even noticed him. But I definitely saw Ethan checking out Justin when he was leaning over the bar reaching for a stack of napkins, that delectable little bubble butt wiggling in the air for all to admire. After that, I kinda didn't let Justin out of my sight for the rest of the evening until Ethan's group left.


Then there's also been the little disagreements lately about sex. I can't help it that I've felt a little bit needy in that department lately, too. That first time we argued over who was going to get to bottom, it was actually sort of funny - it was just so out of character for me. Lately, though, Justin says I've been selfish and making him do all the work. The more stressed I feel, though, the more I crave that feeling of being filled, cared for and claimed. Oh how the mighty top has fallen!


The upshot of our argument though is that I've agreed to give Justin a little bit more space. We set up some new 'rules' - not unlike those he demanded of me once in a different time. Justin now gets at least one weekend night to himself to go out and party with his friends and I'm not allowed to complain. He does agree to be home by 3:00 am and to at least call me and let me know where he's going in advance. And, I promise not to be so possessive of him when we're out together.


We've never really had the whole discussion about tricking. Justin knows I haven't been with anyone else since the hospital. I'm equally aware that he has been. I'm the last person on Earth to complain about my partner not being monogamous and he's always been discrete and considerate so I have no reason to complain. But, now that he's asserting a little more independence, I'm starting to worry. He's definitely tricking more. I can smell them on him when he gets home at night. I don't say anything but I don't like it much now that the shoe's on the other foot, either.


Somehow we make it through to the end of the school year, though. Justin graduates with honors and he's accepted into PIFA for the fall, as I knew he would be. I adamantly refuse to let him go to his Prom though, with or without me. Instead I take him away for the weekend to a little B&B in Virginia where I spend the whole time over-the-top romancing him. Ridiculously romantic without the bashing - much, much better in my opinion.


I'm starting to think that maybe I've fixed things and I'll make it past this year, finally.


At least I think so until about two weeks after we get back from Virginia. That weekend, Justin goes out on Saturday night. He tells me he's going to Boy Toy because he feels like dancing. I have a weird feeling about tonight but I refuse to say anything because I agreed to this and I never go back on my word once I've promised something.


I never can get to sleep until he gets home, though, which means I'm still awake when 3:00 am comes and goes and Justin doesn't return. I'm not too worried though until after 4:00 am also comes and goes without word. I've left messages on his cell phone and called the office at both Boy Toy and Babylon but no one's seen him. I have visions of bloody puddles and baseball bats in my head and I feel like I want to scream but I'm too afraid.


The sun is already up before Justin finally stumbles in, still wasted and reeking of some other man's cologne. I don't care. I run to him and wrap him in my arms, just glad that he's home and that he's okay. He doesn't seem nearly as happy to see me. He shrugs me off and heads to the bed without a word.


I follow him but much more slowly. What can I say? I have no right to be angry, not after everything I've done to him in the past - well in my past. How many times did I come home late - granted I never missed our agreed upon curfew except that one time I was in jail - drunk, stoned and smelling like my latest trick? A hundred times? More? So he screwed up one time, big deal, right? I have no right to complain. Still, I wish he'd showered before coming to bed because I haven't slept yet either but I can't get into the bed without smelling that cologne on the sheets. But I can't sleep away from him either. This is fucking hell.


By the time I finally wake up again, Justin's already getting dressed and ready to head out. I know I should just keep my mouth shut. Confronting him about this won't do anything. But, I just fucking can't stop myself.


"Justin, please stop. Tell me what's going on. What happened last night? We have an arrangement, you know?"


"Brian, I don't want to do this right now. I promised to meet someone for lunch. Can we do this later?" Justin says, looking at me with disdain.


"No, we can't do this later. I was fucking worried sick about you. You promised to be home by three. Where were you?"


"Drop it, Brian," is all he says before he storms out, slamming the loft door behind him.


Fuck. When did I turn into this needy little hausfrau who requires constant reassurance that I'm loved? I hate being like this. This isn't me. I thought that this was what I wanted, but it's not right. I'm not right. I'm afraid I'm going to lose him again. I'm driving him away and I can't stop myself.


In a panic I decide to head out and find him. I want to apologize. I need to make this right. I need to make Justin understand. I decide to finally tell him everything. I'm going to finally confess to him what happened nine months ago, why I ended up in the hospital, why I can't bear to be apart from him. I'm going to tell him all about all these strange past lives and all the fucked up ways I tried to get him back before. I hope that once he understands, he'll be able to forgive me.


I head to the Diner first. If he's there, great. If not, maybe someone there will be able to tell me where to find him - the queer community is pretty tight and everybody knows everybody, so all I have to do is tap the Diner's gay grapevine and I'm sure I'll find out anything I need.


But, it doesn't look like I'll be needing that grapevine after all. As soon as I walk into the Diner, I see them. Justin is sitting in a booth with his back to the door. Across from him is . . . well, it's me, sorta. The guy sitting there holding Justin's hand is dark haired, thin and, although he's sitting now, he looks tall. He's got that same arrogant swagger that I remember having once. He's younger than me by a good five years. But, he's pretty much the old me.


Deb sees me standing in the doorway and tries to intercept me. But, I'm not going to be deterred that easily. I sidestep around her, avoiding her concerned gaze, and walk over to Justin's booth. I stand there silently, looking down at their entwined hands, simply fascinated and unable to look away.


"Brian," Justin says, completely unashamed and apparently unsurprised to see me. "I told you I was meeting someone for lunch and we'd talk later. Why are you here?"


"I want to talk now, Justin. I . . . Can we please go somewhere so we can talk?"


"No. Brian, you know as well as I do that it's over. I'm sorry, but there's nothing to talk about," Justin calmly explains. "Brad has asked me to move in with him and I've agreed. We'll be over to pick up my stuff later. If you still want to talk, we can do it then, but it won't change anything. It's been great, but . . . I'm only eighteen and I'm too young to settle down and stagnate with you, Brian. I'm sorry."


That has to be one of the funniest things ever said to me. I start to laugh as soon as Justin's finished speaking. Justin's leaving me for someone more like me? Ha! This time it's not like the fiddler - I've given him romance, I tell him daily that I love him, I've fucking smothered him with care and concern, I've told him and shown him how much I need him and he's leaving me for some arrogant stud muffin? Ha, ha ha! And if that's not enough, it's someone who even looks like me. Ha ha hahahahaha! I'm laughing so hard now that tears are leaking out of my eyes and I absently wipe them away with my sleeve.


Justin and Brad are staring at me now with a mixture of horror and contempt. Deb has come up behind me and is trying to guide me away. For the first time I notice that Ted and Emmett are here too, and they're trying to help Deb get me outside. I don't resist. What's the point. I've done everything I could do to make this right and I've still fucked up. And the irony is that, after all is said and done, Justin didn't really want the romance, he wanted the old arrogant me all along. Ha!


Even after Ted and Em get me out of the Diner, I can't stop the hysterical laughter. Eventually Mikey shows up, probably called in by Deb, and the three of them somehow manage to get me back to the loft. I'm only chuckling occasionally now. They still look at me askance as if I'm about to explode or something. I can't explain to them why this is all so humorous though, so they don't get the joke. They just think I've lost it again. And maybe they're right, I probably have.


It eventually comes out that they've all known about Justin and Brad for a while now, but everyone was afraid to tell me. This isn't just some spur of the moment thing. It turns out Brad is the newest, hottest stud on the Avenue. They even say that he reminds them of me when I was younger. That starts me laughing again though and shuts them up pretty quickly.


I slowly get a hold of myself and the laughing stops. Mikey seems relieved that I'm taking this so well. He says he thought I'd break down, cry or at least get angry. But, he's glad I can see the humor in the situation. Oh, Michael! You never did understand my relationship with Justin. No matter how many times I've lived through this, Mikey still doesn't ever seem to get it. At least he's consistent.


I finally succeed in convincing them all to leave. I'm really a pretty good actor when I put some effort into it. I tell them I'm going to be all right and that I'm just going to go take a nap so I can be ready when Justin arrives. Michael seems a little unsure, but in the end I even convince him to leave.


Time to hit the reset button. Or, end it all, if that doesn't work. I really don't care that much anymore. I'm already prepared for this though. I've saved up some of my old medication from back when they first released me from the hospital. The sedatives they gave me to help me sleep were pretty strong. I haven't needed them in quite a while, but I never got rid of the extras, either.


There's twelve pills left in the bottle. It should be plenty. I chase them down with some scotch just to make sure. Then I change the sheets on the bed, strip and get under the covers. I've got an old tee shirt of Justin's that smells like him and I wad it up next to me as I wait till the pills start to kick in.  


It's late and dark when I feel someone shaking me, trying to wake me up.


"Brian! Brian, fuck! Wake up. Wake up, damn it!" Justin's voice sounds angry and worried. "Shit. I should have known he'd do this. Call 911."


I want to reassure him that it's okay and he doesn't need to worry. I'm just going to start over again. But, I don't seem able to form words. His voice is fading but I can still hear him and then in the distance I hear a siren blaring and a strange *beep beep beep* noise closer to me.


"I'm sorry, Brian. Fuck. I didn't mean to hurt you like this. I'm so sorry," I can just barely hear Justin now. "Wake up, Brian. Please wake up . . ."


<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<8>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


*Beep, beep, beep*


"Wake up, Brian.” I hear Justin saying.


Shit. For a minute or two I worry that it didn’t work and I’m still stuck in that last lifetime where I was a pathetic lump that Justin eventually got tired of taking care of. But, then I notice that it’s daylight out so it couldn’t be the same night I was living through before. Then Justin lightly shakes my shoulder, not as if he were desperate to save me but as if he’s trying to gently wake me for a normal day.


“Your alarm has been going off for five minutes now. Don't you need to get up?" Justin says, and promptly rolls over to switch off the beeping noise.


"Good morning, Sunshine," I say, completely relieved and ready to try again, as I roll towards him and pull him into my arms. "It looks like we've got this brand new day and a clean slate ahead of us. So, how should we work it this time around?"


"Huh?" he asks, with an adorably confused look on his face.


"It's nothing," I tell him, not wanting to start the day off with awkward explanations, but wondering nonetheless exactly what I should do next.


How DO I want to work it this time around? I don’t want to just do the same things over and over that I know don’t work. I don’t know what will work, what will eventually get me through this fucking horrible year that I keep reliving, but I do know what won’t work. I know for a fact that I don’t want to repeat the last year where I was a pathetic schmuck who was afraid of his own shadow. I’m still probably fucked up a little over the whole police bashing incident, but that was more than a year ago - in my altered timeline, at least - and I think it’s time I move beyond it. I don’t want to just repeat the past though. I’m sick to death of doing the same things over and over. How about I try a wholly new tack? Honesty, maybe? Fuck, it’s worth trying, I guess.


“Fuck it, Sunshine. I’m getting sick and tired of this whole dance. Can’t we just cut to the chase, hm?” I say, sitting up in bed and pulling Justin up so he’s sitting in front of me giving me his full attention. “You’re young and this is your first time through this, so this is all new to you. But it’s not for me. I’ve done this before and I already know how this is going to go. So, let me tell you what’s going to happen.”


“You really like me, right? Maybe even more than like me?” I ask and smile as he shyly nods at me. “Of course you do. Well, I could pretend that I don’t care about you as much as I really do and we could go back and forth and eventually I would give in and you could move in with me and sometime after that I’d admit that I love you. But the bottom line is that I do care about you, Justin. I know this seems sudden to you, but for me it’s been a long time coming.”


“So, for the sake of my questionable sanity, can we please just skip all the bullshit this time? I want you, Justin. I want you to stay with me. Even if for some reason I didn't want to want you, I have no choice  - I have to make this work. And, I know this seems incomprehensible, but it's true. You're fucking IT for me."


"And I'm assuming that you really do, after everything's said and done, want to be with me, too, otherwise none of this would make sense," I look at him and he's blushing adorably, which I take as an affirmation.


"This is what I propose, then - let's forget all the games and just get on with it. We'll just start off with the understanding that we are officially a couple. That should speed things up considerably. Good?"


"Brian, not that I object or anything, but you do remember that I'm only 17 right? And you're . . . older. So how exactly does this work?"


"That, my dear, is the million dollar question, isn't it. I have no fucking idea how to make this work. The only thing I know that we do right is fuck - well, most of the time. Outside of bed, though, shit gets way too complicated. I'm open to suggestions, though."


"We could just stay in bed all day and never leave," Justin suggests enthusiastically.


"Why not?" I agree, pouncing on my blond boy and pinning him against the mattress. "We can always try it. I'm pretty sure that eventually I'll have to go to work and your family will come looking for you, but I'll try anything once. Let the sex marathon commence!"


And, even if this tactic doesn't work in the long run, it certainly starts off great! We start the day with a quick fast fuck right there to seal the agreement. Then I call into work and tell them I’m not coming in today while Justin calls and tells Daphne where he is so she won’t worry. Next, I pretend to be Craig and excuse Justin from class for the day. Piece of cake, right?


When Mikey shows up, we’re just getting out of the shower and I’m towelling off Justin’s hair after forcibly taking away his towel and throwing him down on the bed again. Fuck he’s insatiable sometimes. That’s probably why we’re such a good match.


“What the fuck, Brian. Why the hell aren’t you ready to go? You’re going to make me late!” is the first thing out of Mikey’s mouth when he lets himself into the loft and storms into the bedroom to find both Justin and I naked and obviously not interested in the least in finding clothes or getting ready to head out for the day. “And what’s Boy Wonder still doing here? I thought you’d have had enough of him by now.”


“Sorry, Mikey. I’ll never get enough of Sunshine here, so you’d better just get used to seeing him around. And, I’m not going to work today, so you can keep the Jeep.”


“Why aren’t you going to work?” Michael demands, standing there with his arms crossed and an accusatory look on his face as if he was channelling the local truant officer.


“Justin proposed that we stay in bed and fuck all day, and I thought it sounded like a great idea. So, for the foreseeable future, or until both our dicks give out, we’ll be here in the loft. Don’t forget to lock up on your way out, now,” I tell him, proceeding to crawl up the bed to where Justin is waiting for me, slowly stroking his cock, already getting started on the next round. “Oh, and Mikey, when you’re done with it, can you please drop the Jeep off at the body shop next to my office so it can be repainted.”


“Shit. How’d you know about the Jeep getting tagged? Brian? Brian, Fuck!” Michael finally gives up waiting for an answer when he notices my mouth is full of Justin’s dick, and he stomps back out of the loft.


From then on it’s nothing but sucking and fucking, rimming and ramming for most of the rest of the day. We have to stop about 10:00 am when Justin’s stomach starts growling so loudly I can’t stand it any longer. I order in a huge amount of food from the local deli - hopefully it’s enough to keep us going for the rest of the day. We also take a longish nap in the middle of the afternoon since we were up most all the night and it’s hard to fuck when you’re yawning. But, otherwise, we keep up a pretty good, steady pace all day until about 6:00 pm when we both have to admit that neither of our asses can take any more and even another blow job seems like it would be just too much. I don’t know what the world record is for consecutive fucks in a 24 hour period, but we have to have come pretty close to it.  


“What do you say, Sunshine? Do we dare venture outside for some sustenance and maybe some company?” I ask, only partly joking, sure as I am that any course of action this enjoyable can’t be the right one - shouldn’t there be more trouble and angst involved in getting this right?


“I think we can risk it,” Justin says with a smile. “What’s the worst that can happen?”


“You DON’T want to ask that, Justin.” I tell him, now convinced that he’s probably jinxed us.



End Notes:

Ahhhhh! I feel much better now. I always prefer a sucking, f**king, assertive Brian - although he's learned a lot from these experiences so I don't think we'll have to deal with any of his more asinine qualities from here on out. Unfortunately, though, I'm not quite done messing with him. So, read on and we'll see how he gets out of this one and whether or not he's learned his lesson.  TAG


Chapter 14 - A New Plan by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

 

Like I said, I'm not quite done messing with him. So, read on and we'll see how he gets out of this one and whether or not he's learned his lesson.  TAG

 

 

 

Chapter 14 - A New Plan.

 

I can’t really come up with a good reason to hold Justin hostage in my loft any longer, so I have to finally agree to accompany him out for dinner at least. We head to the Diner, of course. I figure I might as well get the preliminaries with the family out of the way, like explaining that Justin isn’t a trick, that he’s here to stay, that I’m retiring my Stud status immediately, etc. My hope is to get the family straightened out right away about Justin and I before it can lead to any misunderstandings.

 

So I introduce Justin to Debbie and he officially get’s his “Sunshine” moniker. Then I lead him over to the booth where the rest of the gang is assembling and introduce him to Ted and Emmett. Michael is already there and busy scowling at Justin for daring to have lasted more than one night with me. He starts to open his mouth but I stop him with a warning, "Michael!"

 

When Debbie comes over to take everyone's order, I stop her before she can say anything.

 

"I have an announcement to make while you're all here," I begin. "Sunshine and I are officially a couple from here on out. So I don't want you all to be giving him shit about overstaying his welcome or telling him that I don't do repeats or boyfriends or whatever other shit you were planning on telling him. I do what and who I want and I want him. He's not a trick or a fling or someone I'm going to get tired of soon. Got it? And even though I think of you as my family, none of you have the right to dictate to me how I choose to live my life. So don't even start with this. Do you all understand?"

 

"But, Brian . . ."

 

"Don't start, Michael," I warn him.

 

Michael's mouth snaps shut and he just sits there looking at me in total confusion. The other faces around the table are equally flabbergasted. If I wasn't so dead serious I'd bust a gut laughing at all their gaping jaws and furrowed brows. Justin's not able to maintain quite such a stoic demeanor and he covers his mouth to stifle the chuckle I hear starting. But not one of them says a thing.

 

"Well . . . Okay, then," Debbie eventually breaks the silence. "Welcome to the family, Sunshine. Now, are you gonna eat or did you just come here to pontificate, Asshole?"

 

The rest of dinner goes fairly smoothly, although Michael continues to glare at me the entire time, especially when I do anything he’d consider out of character, like kissing Justin or otherwise showing open affection in public. Poor Mikey - this is a big change for him to swallow all at once like this. But Emmett seems thrilled to find Brian Kinney coming down to earth with the rest of humanity and he’s effusive in his efforts to include Justin. I always did like Emmett, even if I do enjoy giving him tons of shit.

 

Since we’re still not ready to go back to the loft for more fucking, Justin and I go with the boys to Woody’s after dinner for drinks and pool. I’m not used to having all eyes on me again after my last hermit-like year, so it feels weird to be back at Woody’s with every guy there coming on to me again. For them, nothing has happened. But I’m getting a bit annoyed by the time I have to tell the seventh or eighth person that I’m ‘not interested’. I think I kinda growled at that last guy even.

 

“Well, butter my butt and call me a biscuit,” Emmett exclaims loudly at this point. “I can hardly believe it, but I think it’s true - our Mr. Kinney is officially off the market boys. So what's your secret, Justin? How did you tame the wild beast?"

 

"I'm not 'tamed', Honeycutt. It's just that Sunshine has a perfect ass, a fabulous cock and he gives fantastic head. Once you've got perfection, why bother with the hordes of mediocrity," I answer for him, enjoying the beaming smile he gives me as a reward, as well as the fact that I've effectively shut up Emmett.

 

Ted and I start playing pool after that and I try to back off and let Justin have some 'space'. I will not be 'clingy' this time around. Besides, I know that he can take care of himself, even if I have trouble turning off my overprotective mode. Brian Kinney does do jealous these days, but I'm trying to control it. Really.

 

I don't even react when I see Mikey cornering Justin with a determined look on his face. I'm convinced that he's doing just what I told him earlier not to do, but I figure I'll give Justin a chance to deal with it on his own. My Sunshine should be more than a match for Michael.

 

“Hey, Brian. Have you seen my cell phone? I was sure I grabbed it when we left your loft but I can’t find it now. I really should check in with home or by the time I do go back there I’ll be grounded for life,” Justin comes up to me and asks sometime during my third game of pool.

 

“Sorry. Haven’t seen it. I remember you taking it with you though when we left. You want to check in the car?” I say and hand him the keys, not really thinking much at the time about a silly missing phone.

 

It’s only when Justin still hasn’t come back into the bar after more than twenty minutes that I start to get worried. I head out to the parking lot to see if he’s just out there talking on the phone where it’s more quiet. There’s no sign of him though, either in the parking lot or in the car itself. I turn to head back inside but the street light glints off something metallic at my feet and it catches my eye. Looking down I see my keys lying on the ground near the car door and I know something is seriously wrong.

 

“Justin’s missing and I found my keys on the ground outside,” I tell everyone at the table as I run inside to get my jacket and my own cell phone. “Did any of you see where he went?”

 

“It was probably just past his bedtime,” says Michael with a nasty snicker.

 

“Fuck you, Michael. He wouldn’t have left without saying something to me and he wouldn’t have left my keys outside on the ground by the car. Something’s happened to him. Now, did you see him or not?” I demand, getting right in Mikey’s face.

 

“Calm down, Brian. I’m sure he’s fine. Besides, it’s better that he’s gone. He was way too young for you anyway. You might like chicken, but the rest of us don’t appreciate babysitting your tricks when you’re busy drinking and playing pool,” Michael says with the ugliest sneer on his face that I’ve ever seen.

 

“Fuck you, Michael. I’m calling the police. Give me my phone - it’s in my jacket over there by you, Ted.”

 

“Brian, stop,” Michael says as he intercepts the jacket that Ted is handing to me. “You don’t have to call the police. Justin’s fine. He’s gone home.”

 

“Michael, what the fuck have you done,” I demand, Michael’s nervous demeanor and guilty look giving him away.

 

"I just borrowed his phone and called his parents," Michael says, practically bragging about his underhanded deed. "I didn't think they'd be happy about their kid being here at a bar seeing as he's underage. His dad was very thankful to me for letting them know. He said he was coming down to get the kid and take him home. So you don't need to over react, Brian, the kid is just home, tucked up in bed where the little tyke belongs, and the rest of us adults can enjoy our evening without the babysitting."

 

“Shit! Michael, why the hell did you do that? His father is a total homophobic prick and you just sent him back there without any warning? Fuck, fuck, fuck.” I yell and try to reach across Ted to get to the now cowering Michael.

 

All hell breaks loose at that point. Ted and Emmett as well as some other bar patrons are trying to hold me back while I’m trying to get to Michael to strangle him. Michael, who by the way still has my jacket, is trying to climb over the back of the booth where we’d been sitting to escape from me. Before long though, Bruce, one the trainers from the gym I go to, comes over and grabs me in a half nelson hold and effectively puts all my struggles to an end.  When I agree not to try to kill Michael anymore, Bruce finally releases me and Ted gets my jacket back from the cowering coward. I give him a look that should, if this were a just world, shrivel his gonads into raisins, before turning and jogging out to the car.

 

Looks like I’m going to have to confront Craig. Again.

 

“You can’t just hold me here like a fucking prisoner, Dad!” I hear Justin yelling from inside before I’ve even reached the front door of the Taylor house.

 

I don’t bother to knock - I doubt they could hear it over all the noise going on inside. Besides, I don’t really think I’d be invited in anyway. Luckily, in the confusion of dragging their captive son into the house, it appears that the Taylors forgot to lock the door, so I just walk in. I follow the general uproar towards the back of the house until I find Justin with his parents, all standing in the kitchen, yelling at each other at the tops of their lungs.

 

“I’ll skip over the fact that you lied to us about where you were, but what exactly did you think you were doing going to a place like that. You’re only 17, Justin. What the hell were you doing at a bar, let alone a gay bar?” Craig yells, his face turning that ugly purplish red he gets when he’s angry.

 

“He was with me,” I pipe up, announcing myself as I come into the kitchen and move straight over to where Justin has been cornered between the sink and the kitchen bar. “Sorry to have to introduce myself to you under such circumstances, but I’m Brian Kinney. I’m the one who invited Justin to come to the bar to hang out with myself and my friends. So, if you’re angry at anyone, it should be me, not Justin.”

 

“Brian. You don’t have to do this. I can handle this,” Justin says, trying to protect me I would assume, although it’s far too late for that, I note, as Craig’s face turns an even darker shade of purple.

 

“I’m not going to abandon you to deal with this all by yourself, Sunshine,” I tell him calmly, reaching out to lace my fingers through his to show my support. “It was my fucking friend, Mikey, who ratted you out so I’ll stay and help you sort out the repercussions.”

 

“Get your god damned hands off my son you fucking pervert,” Craig says with predictable vehemence.

 

“I can’t do that, Craig. You see, I love your son and I’m not going anywhere so you’re going to have to get used to seeing me,” I say as calmly as I can, not bothering to look at the raging breeder, but keeping my eyes on Justin instead, gleaning strength from his sparking, angry blue eyes.

 

Of course, if I had been looking in the right direction, I probably would have seen Craig’s fist before it hit me square on the jaw. He really does pack a fucking wallop, too. His one punch knocks me back into the kitchen counter where I hit my head as I fall.

 

I see Justin’s face turn even paler as he looks down at me right before I pass out and I hear him call my name, “Brian!” Then, it all goes dark.

 

‘Fuck,’ I think as I feel my consciousness slip away. “I was really enjoying this time, too.’

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<9>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

Justin is asleep next to me in the bed. This time around I didn’t feel quite as desperate to reassert myself into his life as I did last time so we didn’t really need to repeat the sex marathon, but, well . . . that part worked just fine and I didn’t really think it was necessary to mess with something that was actually working. So I kept Justin with me again today when the alarm went off and we woke up back where we always start. He’s a little worn out - not that I’m not, but I need this time to think more than I need to sleep. And while Justin snores, I’m sitting here trying to take stock of all my past lives and figure out exactly what I need to do to fix this.

 

From the lives I can remember - shit, what if there’s more that I can’t remember that have been even worse, but I can’t worry about that now - there seems to be one recurring theme: Craig Taylor. In almost every situation, except those where I just went crazy all on my own, Craig Taylor was the element that defeated me. I can’t even keep track of how many times he’s beat me up or run me off the road or done something else to derail my life. So, I need to deal with Craig.

 

Killing Craig didn’t really work, obviously. So what are my other options? I’ve tried to avoid him and that really didn’t work either - eventually I always have to deal with the little shit no matter what. I briefly contemplate kidnapping Justin and leaving here never to return. Somehow, though, I don’t think my strong-willed and independent boy will go for being hidden away from the world for as long as it would take to get Craig off our backs.  

 

So that leaves confronting him. But that’s never really worked either. At least not when I was trying to ‘shove my lifestyle’ (as he calls it) down his homophobic throat. He’s never really been the kind of reasonable guy I could try to talk to, though - not that I’ve actually tried. Fuck knows that talking about crap isn’t usually my forte. Well, except for at my job. When I’m selling a campaign pitch I’m fucking unstoppable.

 

Should I even TRY to talk to the fucker? I have little or no hope of getting anywhere with that tactic, but . . . well, I can’t think of anything else to try. So I just have to come up with the perfect campaign to ‘sell’ homosexuality to Craig Taylor. Yeah, right. I’m fucked. But even just making the decision to try kind of takes a weight off my shoulders and I’m finally able to relax and catch a few zzz’s with my Sunshine.

 

I’m still so pissed off at Michael that I can’t even think about seeing him. It was bad enough that I had to talk to him briefly this morning to tell him NOT to bother coming to pick me up. I know he doesn’t have a clue why I’m angry at him - in fact, I’m angry at him for something THIS Michael hasn’t even done yet. But that doesn’t mean I want to see him either. So I decide that we need to just skip going to the Diner for a while. Instead, when we’re all fucked out this time, I take Justin out to dinner at a nice Asian Fusion cafe I know that’s downtown but far enough away from Mikey’s usual haunts that we’re not likely to see him.

 

"So, Sunshine, talk to me about your dad," I ask once our food has been served. "Tell me everything about him."

 

"Why?" a very confused and totally cute blond asks as he slurps up an extra long vermicelli noodle, splashing hoi sin sauce on his nose in the process and almost distracting me from the conversation.

 

"Because, I think that if this is going to work I'm going to have to introduce myself to your parents and I need to do everything I can to win them over. Which means I need information. That's how I always close deals with my clients at work. I make sure I know everything I can about them. Then I can tailor my campaign accordingly. If you have the right info, Sunshine, you can sell anything."

 

"Okay," he easily agrees and we spend the next half hour discussing my nemesis, Craig Taylor.

 

Things I didn't know about Craig Taylor:

 

1) He's not from the east coast. He actually grew up in a small town in Idaho. He came to the east coast because he got a scholarship to Dartmouth and didn't move to the Pitts until after he met Jennifer. From the way Justin explains it, he was desperate to escape the boredom of small town life and his small-town-minded family. It also means he's smart which gives me some hope.

 

2) He grew up in the Mormon Church - which explains a whole fucking lot about his attitude towards gays. The Mormons still, to this day, are even more closed minded about homosexuality than even my mother's beloved Catholic Church. According to old Joe Smith and his church, the ONLY reason to have sex is to make babies. And since there's no possibility of that for me and Justin, it's an automatic sin. At least they're not rabid about it, though - basically, being gay isn't really any worse than committing adultery for them. Hopefully, that's a point I can use with Craig.

 

3) Craig had to defy his family in order to marry Jennifer. This might be the most important factor of all. According to Justin, Craig's strict Mormon family disowned him when he went and married someone who wouldn't join their church. There was no way, though, that Jennifer, tough independent and smart like she is, was going to subject herself to the stricter tenets of the LDS faith. In the end, it wasn't much of a hardship for Craig though, because Jenn comes from old money and they took care of setting Craig up in business, not to mention buying the couple their first home. Craig's family never spoke to him again.

 

Based on this info, by the time we've finished dinner, Justin and I have a plan for how to win over Craig Taylor. We hope. But first, I'm keeping him with me for one more night because our plan is going to take a while and it's going to require a little deception that's likely to keep Justin out of my reach for a while - he's going to have to pretend to be a good, dutiful son.

 

I escort my blond back to the loft and let him lounge on the couch for a bit while I pull out my treadmill and run for about twenty minutes. Working out always gets my brain going and I spend the time reviewing and tweaking our plan. I'm still not sure I can do this. But it's better than the alternative of trying to kill Craig again. I guess. Eventually all those natural endorphins from my run flood out the doubts I have and I start to think that maybe I can talk Craig into accepting me and Justin.

 

As soon as I've worked off the yakisoba noodles I had for dinner, I jump off the treadmill and start to put it away, intending to head for the shower. Sunshine beats me to it, somehow, and by the time I get there, he's already standing under the streaming water. I'm mesmerized by the sight of rivulets of water running down over his flawless porcelain skin, streaming down his back and dripping into the crack of his perfect plump ass. Oh yeah, I remember, that's why I'm doing all this.

 

I quickly join him, grabbing the soap and letting my fingers run over the planes of his silky soft yet firm skin. I soap his shoulders and back, trailing my fingers slowly down his lightly muscled torso. He twists slightly so he can look over his shoulder at me and I can feel the play of those muscles under my finger tips. I let the bar of soap slide lower, gliding over each pale round globe and then guiding it back up his deep welcoming crack, just brushing against that sweet little hole with one finger as I pass it by, eliciting a happy little moan from my shower companion. I can't believe I'm hard again after our earlier exploits last night and all day today, but I simply can't ever get enough of this beautiful man.

 

I have to pull him close into me, loving the feel of every inch of his wet bare skin pressed against me. My cock is rubbing slickly against the small of his back, engendering little flashes of electricity each time he moves. I am amazed at how erotic just holding him like this is to me, but the effects on my dick don't lie.

 

I take a breath to calm myself and take the opportunity to soap along his chest, caressing each hard erect nipple as I pass it by, and then down over the taut lean stomach till I reach the treasure of his already hardening cock nestled in the patch of downy pubes. Justin leans back languidly against me as I tend to him, the increased pressure against my groin encouraging me to grab his nice thick cock and stroke it till it's standing to attention in front of him. I look down over his shoulder and get an eyeful of that proud jutting member and I want to simply devour it and its owner.

 

I have to taste him. I spin Justin around fast and shove him against the shower wall, dropping to my knees on the hard tile without even thinking. I take a tiny lick at the head of his dick at first, tasting the residue of soap but also the salty sweetness of his skin. His skin is hot under the sheen of cooler water and the sensations of both on my tongue cause a ripple of anticipation to rush to my own throbbing dick.

 

That little taste isn't nearly sufficient, though. I eagerly reach out to cup his heavy balls with my hand, lifting them up and at the same time exposing the underside of his cock to my ministrations. I lick up the length of his hot hard rod, exploring the texture of the skin and running my tongue along the pulsing veins I find there. Then I take it all in and suck hard, reveling in the cascade of mewling happy noises that fall from the boy standing above me. It's still not enough, though. I need to be inside him. I need to feel all of him surrounding me.

 

"You up for one more?" I whisper in his seashell ear as I gently push at his hips until he turns back to face into the glass shower surround.

 

Justin's hungry hips shove back into me right away. He's more than up for this - my hot little blond is insatiable. I use the soap to lather up his crack again and slip a slick finger into his sweet little pucker. He's panting and wiggling his ass at me, doing his best to encourage me. I add another finger and then another as Justin thrusts eagerly back onto my hand, fucking himself with wanton abandon. His hands are gripped over the top of the shower wall, holding him in place, but his lower body is writhing against me, almost with a separate will.

 

I pull out my fingers, ignoring his groan at the sense of loss, because I know what he needs more. Quickly slipping on a condom, I ardently thrust into his hot tight depths, loving the wild moans that Justin simply can't hold back. I can't believe we're both so eager for this again, but we are. I'm driving into him, again and again. He's so tight and hot even after everything I put him through last night, and I'm in fucking heaven for this endless moment in time where all that exists is the two of us joined together with each focused solely on the other.

 

I reach around his svelte body, wrapping my arms around him to pull him tighter to me, feeling like I'll never get close enough. He abandons himself to me completely, my arms the only things holding him up as his head lolls back on my shoulder and his arms snake up behind us both to wrap around my neck. With one hand I'm pinching and twisting at one of his hard little nipples while my other hand is drawn to his engorged cock. I'm stroking him in time with my thrusting.

 

I don't know why it takes me by surprise, but it does. One minute I'm rutting away and the next I feel that electric jolt zapping through my body from one nerve ending to the next, causing my body to convulse as I feel my cum shooting out to fill the condom. The electric spark must also jump to the body of the writhing blond in my arms, because his form convulses a minute after mine, and his thick hot cum squirts through my fingers, his dick twitching and jumping in my hand as I try to hold us both erect through the powerful orgasms.

 

This is why I'm doing everything, I remind myself. This euphoric feeling that I've only ever felt with one particular, beautiful man. The reason why I'm still here and still trying.


 

End Notes:

 

Sorry to all my readers who prefer to kill Craig rather than talk to him. It was the only way these next few chapters were going to work, though. However, I am open to reader input. So, tell me what you want - should this talking with Craig thing actually work or do you have other ideas how I can resolve poor Brian's dilemma. Let me hear from you, or else, it might end up that Craig and Brian become *gasp* friends. He he he.  TAG

 

 

Chapter 15 - Operation Convince Craig by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

So, this is what happens when Brian and Justin concoct a plan to win over Craig. Do you think it will work? Brian does have that Kinney charm working for him. But, is it enough to win over a confirmed homophobe. Read on, dear readers and you'll see. But, beware - there's a definite possibility that Brian and Craig might end up *gasp* friends. (evil laughter from author is preventing further comments.) Enjoy! TAG


Chapter 15 - Operation Convince Craig.


This is going to be the hardest part of our plan - I have to take Justin home and leave him there. And, I won't get to see him for days. I hope this is gonna be worth it. If not, I might have to reconsider the whole kidnapping idea. But we already have a plan, and I think it's a good one, so we might as well try it. If only it didn't involve Justin having to go home in order to get it rolling.


I park the Jeep several blocks away from the Taylor house. I also make sure the car is mostly hidden by a large stand of trees so there's no chance that Craig will somehow happen upon us as I kiss Justin goodbye this time. Since I'm not going to get much access to those beautiful, full, delicious lips for the next couple of weeks, I devote some serious attention to them now.


"You better go, Sunshine," I finally say, taking one last nibble at those lovely and now swollen, cherry red lips that tempt me so much. "You’ve got your assignment. Call me as soon as you can, though. I'll teach you the finer points of phone sex, if you're a good boy."


"Then I'll be extra good, even though I'd prefer to stay and be naughty with you."


"Later, twat!"


"Later."


I barely make it back to the loft before that good little boy calls me. Either things went very well, or he's just excited about the prospect of phone sex. I pull off my shirt before answering as I lie back on the bed.


"The plan is going perfectly, Brian. My father was thrilled to hear I'd got a job, even if it was in an art related field rather than a 'real business'," Justin enthuses as soon as I say hello. "My mother was worried about my grades dropping and shit, though, so she said I can't work more than two afternoons a week. I'm happy to put in weekends with you though and, if you need me, I'd work through the night for you, Mr. Kinney."


"I'm sure I can find some special projects you can work on, Taylor," I  purr at him, already thinking of one project that I could use him for - involving my dick and his plump lips. "So, now I just have to plan an elegant little affair that we can invite your parents to so they can meet and fall in love with me."


"Are you sure about this, Brian? I mean, you getting me a job interning at the Ryder Agency? That's huge. And you haven't even seen any of my art. For all you know I might be barely able to draw a stick figure."


"Don't worry about it, Sunshine. I'm convinced that if you show half the natural talent with your fingers that you've already shown me with your lips then you'll be a genius."


"Oooh. So, are you telling me I have to perform sexual favors for you to keep my job, Mr. Kinney?" I can hear the teasing laughter in his voice and the sound thrills along my already hardening cock.


"Of course," I laugh, thinking how hot it'll be having my own little intern at work. "And, don't forget that you'll be required to put in a lot of long, hard hours working under me, Taylor. It'll be very, very hard. Especially for you."


"I like it when you're hard on me, Mr. Kinney."


"Let me tell you just how hard I'm going to be with you, Taylor . . . " I murmur into the phone and then I proceed to teach the willing boy a sweet little lesson in phone sex techniques that he picks up on with his usual eagerness.


It's still early afternoon when I get off the phone with my newest intern, which means I have time to get to work on my part of this plan. I don't have any doubts that I'll be able to talk Ryder into letting me hire a high school kid part time at minimum wage as my intern. What's going to take some finagling is getting Ryder to foot the bill for a party that we can invite the interns AND their families to - which is where I'll 'meet' and hopefully win over Craig and Jennifer Taylor. But, I'm sure I'll find a way, so I decide to skip on to the less onerous (for me) task of planning the affair.


"Honeycutt," I say once I've got the flamboyant southerner on the phone. "How'd you like to earn a few bucks organizing a party for me for Ryder's interns?"


Monday afternoon, promptly at 4:00 pm, my new intern shows up at Ryder's offices. Fuck, Justin looks so hot in those slacks and the soft blue cardigan that he's wearing. I don't waste any time getting Taylor into my office so I can show him exactly what his duties are going to encompass. Justin doesn't seem to mind at all, since he's all over me as soon as I lock the door, and he grins ear to ear as I gently push him to his knees in front of me and start to unzip my pants.


But, once we get the preliminary interview out of the way, I do actually let Justin out of my office and give him a tour of the place, including the desk he'll be using down in the art department. Then I turn him over to Peter, the Art Department head who'll be Justin's direct supervisor. Even if Justin's convinced that I'm only giving him this job because I need him in my bed, I really do appreciate his artistic talents and I intend to put him to work.


Right before 6:00 I stroll down to the art department and magnanimously start handing out the hastily printed invitations inviting staff and their families to a party at the Fairmont Hotel on Friday evening. The event comes as a total surprise to virtually everyone since Ryder isn't exactly known for his warm personality when it comes to his employees - it's one of the reasons that the old Brian liked him so much when I first started working here. However, when I told him that I intended to use the event to drum up some advertising business from a couple of the employees' families, Ryder of course jumped on my brilliant idea. Let's just hope the Kinney charm works equally well on its intended target.


"Hadn't you better call your mother and tell her you'll be home late?" I say as I eventually get around to hand delivering Taylor's invitation.


"I will?" He asks with a coquettish air.


"Of course you will, since your new co-worker has invited you out to dinner to celebrate your first day on the job," I reply, rolling my lips in to hide my grin which almost matches his own.


"Will I actually get to eat anything?" Is all he asks, fixated as usual on his insatiable stomach.


"Maybe. I'll probably untie you long enough for you to get some food. Eventually." I say with a lewd wink as I turn to slowly saunter away.


He's already got his cell phone in hand and is dialing home before I reach the door.


Friday evening finds me as nervous as a teenager about to meet his date's parents for the first time. Shit. Me, worried about making a good impression on someone's parents - the crazy things I'll do for my Sunshine. But it's too late to back out now, so I just smile and play the gracious host as I watch the rest of the staff ramble into the party.


"Fuck, Brian," Cynthia says as she admires my new cordovan Armani suit paired with a pale yellow silk shirt and matching tie. "You look positively edible. First a party for the staff, then a new suit. So, whose pants are you planning on getting into tonight?"


"Now Cynthia, whyever would you think such callous things about me? I'm just trying to make a good impression on our employees' families." I tell her semi-truthfully.


"Yeah. Right. And then you'll be entering a monastery, right?" Cynthia apparently has me pegged.


The Taylors are almost the last ones here. I hope I don't look as nervous as Justin does when he comes through the doors and politely leads his parents over to where Cynthia and I are standing. Although, nervous does look damn hot on him, I can't help but notice as he bites at his lower lip.


"Mom. Dad. This is Brian Kinney, one of the account executives I work with. Brian, I'd like you to meet my parents, Jennifer and Craig Taylor," Justin does the introductions admirably and then it's all up to the Kinney charm.


"Mr. & Mrs. Taylor. Nice to meet you. You know that you have an incredibly talented son and Ryder is so lucky to have him working for us," I say, noting how the compliment makes Justin glow.


After five minutes more of small talk, Justin maneuvers his parents over to the buffet table, winking at me as he follows them. Cynthia just looks at me with one of her semi-disapproving glares. She's known me far too long to have any doubt about the nature of my interest in our newest intern, but she's also too tactful to ever say anything.


I make a point of spending a significant amount of time schmoozing with Craig before the reception winds down. I seem to have gotten on his good side - for a change - since he claps me on the shoulder companionably as he shakes my hand goodbye at the end of the evening. Will wonders never cease? Justin is grinning at me the whole time and I have to keep reminding myself to be patient. It really wouldn't help things along for me to take the boy into the men's room for a quick fuck, despite the fact that I desperately want to do just that.


"Taylor. Don't forget that special project we have this weekend. I expect you to come early tomorrow," I tell Justin as he's following behind his parents.


"I'm up for anything, Mr. Kinney," he returns, waggling his brows at me then dutifully following his parents out the door.


Phase one of Operation Convince Craig is now complete.


I keep Sunshine with me all weekend after he shows up at my door at 10:00 am Saturday, already unzipping his pants before I even get the loft door open. Good, horny little boy. I even brave the Diner and Babylon that night in an effort to show him a bit of fun. This time around I've skipped the up front declarations to the gang though. When Mikey starts haranguing me about why Justin is back, I simply ignore him. Once we get to the club I simply pull Justin out to the dance floor immediately so I don't have to deal with Michael or all the annoying tricks trying to force themselves on me and I can sort of block out my uneasiness about the noise and lights by concentrating only on his beautiful happy face. The kid has a great time and I make it through the night, so all's well.


Justin tells his folks he's sleeping over at Daphne's that night so he can stay with me. I hate the deception, but hopefully it's only for a short time. Not to mention that I'll take Justin any way I can get him.


On Sunday, we start to work on phase two of our plan. Justin tells me that phase one was a roaring success. Both his parents commented profusely in the car on the way home about how personable and charming I was (of course) and his mom apparently even made a comment about how hot I looked in that suit (ick). Craig said he'd been impressed with my business savvy. Good first impression - check.


Now it's time to reinforce that first impression. The idea here is that it's easier to form an opinion than to change one. And, the more reinforced the initial opinion is, the harder it is to change. This is one of the golden rules of advertising.


Now, how to reinforce Craig's good opinion of me? I DON'T play golf - not even Justin's going to change my mind about that - and I'm not going to invite old Craig out to some breeder bar to get all chummy with him. About the only thing we do have in common is a desire to make lots and lots of money.


It takes a while, but Justin and I spend a couple of hours researching on the computer and eventually come up with a creative way to share that one interest - the Dartmouth Alumni group here in the Pitts is holding a mixer next weekend. There'll be lots of rich people who need advertising help. Some who might need electronics. And, since Craig is an alumnus, he's my excuse for asking him to take me. There you have it  - the perfect opportunity for the two of us to bond. I just have to remember not to kill him first.


First thing Monday I give old Craig a call and propose the venture. I couch the idea in terms of a favor he can do me - people generally love to feel useful as long as it doesn't cost them anything. Then I sell him on the idea by suggesting he might be able to drum up some business as well. And, to top it all off, I tell him I'll buy dinner at one of the best steakhouses in town. Now, what could be more manly and businesslike than that? Shit, if I didn't know I was gay, even I'd buy it. Craig is an easy sell and accepts without even token resistance.


Come Saturday, I dress in my best business casual attire - tight grey wool Armani dress slacks with my new Prada boots and a wine red v-neck cashmere sweater with my favorite Hugo Boss leather jacket over all - then I fuck Craig's son one more time over the back of the couch, and head out to Morton's Steakhouse* to meet Craig.


And, strangely enough it's not horrible. Yeah, like every straight guy I've ever met, he starts off the conversation with some inane comment about sports. When I don't take the bait, he switches to cars - now that I can talk about. By the time I tell him about my last car (next car, soon to be car?) the Vette, Craig's all ears and maybe even a little jealous. Then I carefully steer us towards the topic of business, then college and all the business courses I took for my minor. That, along with the fourth beer I've ordered for him, gets him reminiscing about where he grew up in rural Idaho. And, bingo! I've got him to the exact topic I wanted him to reach.


Craig tells me about meeting Jenn in college - she went to Holyoak, a nearby all girl’s school - and how hard it was to win her over. He talks about how hard it was to get through college having to work and still keep his grades up so he'd keep his scholarship. I find myself actually sharing some of my own similar experiences with him. Then Craig starts to talk about how difficult his family was and how he basically doesn't speak to them anymore and I find myself sympathizing with the man. Shit. How can it be that I actually, sort of, like this guy - when he isn't punching me or trying to kill me with his car.


We actually never make it to the Dartmouth mixer. Instead we just move from our table to the bar and keep drinking and talking. Luckily, I'm the new, improved Brian Kinney who can sit and talk about semi-serious shit without fucking the smoking hot, dark skinned bartender who keeps giving me that 'fuck me' look. But, with my eyes on the blond-haired, blue eyed prize that's waiting for me back at my loft, I make it through dinner and put Craig in a cab for home without fucking the bartender, losing it and punching the shit out of Craig or giving away my little plan.


Justin rewards my efforts handsomely as soon as I make it back to the loft and tell him how well I did. The little genius has definitely already mastered the art of the blowjob. Did I mention that he’s a quick learner.


The next phase of the plan is where I have to somehow reveal to my new found buddy Craig that I'm gay in a non-threatening way that won't make him recoil in disgust. I’m afraid this part is going to be tricky. I'm completely stumped as to how to accomplish this step. Justin and I spend hours that weekend brainstorming ideas and then shooting them all down. We're still stuck by the time I have to take him home on Sunday afternoon.


That's when providence steps in and for once does something nice for me. It turns out that Craig's been raving all day about what a decent guy I am. This has spurred Jenn to come up with the predictably WASPish idea that she should invite me over for dinner. And, since I'm single, a fact I conveniently let slip to Craig the night before, Jennifer of course immediately starts thinking about women she knows who are single who she can set me up with. Justin happens to walk into the house just as Jennifer is discussing it with Craig and proposing her friend Rose as a possible dinner companion for me.


"Mom," Justin interrupts with a half-hidden grin. "Um, I wouldn't invite Rose if I were you. Brian's gay."


Justin's giggling hysterically as he describes the scene to me ten minutes later over the phone. "Then they both shouted 'What?' And dad started telling me 'that's impossible 'cause he'd know. It was hilarious. I just told them that you're very open about it at work and everybody knows and then they both just sat down and looked at each other for a while. Then my mom says - and you're gonna love this - she says, 'Well, we can still have him over for dinner, I guess.' And my dad just shrugs and doesn't say anything. Can you believe it? He didn't say ANYTHING. Then mom asked if he'd rather do a sit down meal or a barbeque and he said he thought you'd rather have something grilled. That's all he said, Brian. It was perfect. You did it! You're brilliant!"


Right then my phone beeps to tell me there's another call coming in and, you guessed it, it's from Justin's home number. I quickly put Justin on hold and answer the other line.


"Kinney," I answer as calmly as I can through my glee.


"Brian? It's Jennifer Taylor."


"Jennifer, what a lovely surprise," I manage to say without laughing.


"I don't mean to disturb you, but I was hoping you were available on Wednesday evening," Jennifer gets right to the point. "Craig told me what a lovely dinner you treated him to last night and then you didn't even make it to the Dartmouth party. So I thought it would be only fair to pay you back with a home cooked meal. Craig's going to fire up the grill and make his grandma's famous pulled pork. So, if you're interested, we'd love to have you over."


"That sounds absolutely wonderful, Jennifer. I'd love to. Just tell me what time. I can even give Justin a ride home since he's working this Wednesday, I think."


"Fuck!" I yell into the phone as soon as I switch back to Justin on the other line.


"What's wrong, Brian?"


"I'm having dinner with the in-laws on Wednesday night," I complain over the peals of laughter coming through the phone. "Don't you dare tell anyone about this, ever, Sunshine"


"Or what?" He manages to ask through even more giggles.


"Or I'll tie your balls so tight they'll ache for a week. That's what."


"Um, Brian? That's supposed to be a punishment?"


"You twat!" I admonish and then move on to explain all the other deliciously dirty things I'll do to my naughty little boy the next time I get him alone, while Justin's giggles turn into moans.


Dinner at the Taylor's goes well, at first. Justin and I show up on time and I schmooze with Jenn while Craig does the honors at the grill. I'm feeling a bit nervous though because I've never - even in all my past lives - done the 'meet the parents' thing. Generally I don't do parents. I've never even successfully dealt with my own, let alone someone else's. I never had to when my life revolved around random tricks.  But, for Justin, well I'm trying.


The weakness in this part of the plan turns out to be Justin. Not that the kid does anything wrong. It's more that he's just there. I can't keep my eyes off him. He's smiling and laughing with his mother and joining in the conversation. He offers to go get me a fresh beer and when he comes back he stands so infuriatingly close to me that I can smell the fruity shampoo he uses. I want to just bury my face in that glorious mop of blond hair and inhale deeply. He's just too tantalizingly close.


Try as I might it’s impossible to keep my hands off him completely - I guess it's just become too much of a habit for me and I don't even realize I'm doing it until later. But, when we're heading inside to the table, I casually put my hand on Justin's back to guide him in front of me. I touch his shoulder to get his attention at the table when I want him to pass the pepper mill. When he passes me a serving platter our hands touch and I smile at him indulgently. They're all natural little everyday motions that I never even really think about, but they're telling nonetheless.


By the time we're done with dinner I've also had a couple beers, three glasses of wine with dinner and I'm working on a scotch that Craig hands me as we head to the living room. It's not like I'm drunk or anything, but I have started to feel a bit relaxed. And that's when I completely screw up.


Jenn directs me to take a seat on the couch. Justin is walking directly in front of me as we enter and for some perverse reason, I just naturally follow and sit next to him, my right arm draping around his shoulders as I always do when we're sitting together. I realize my error as soon as it happens. Justin must too, because his body goes stiff immediately. We don't look at each other, though, and neither of us moves - it's as if we're both frozen in that particular pose.


"No, fucking way!" Craig, who was already seated in a nearby armchair, yells as he slams his drink down on the coffee table and stands back up glaring at me. "I couldn't give a flying crap if you're gay, Kinney, that's your own business. But you damn well better get your hands off my son right this instant. I'm NOT letting you corrupt Justin. He's a good kid and he doesn't need you putting funny ideas in his head."


"Brian isn't putting 'funny ideas' in my head, dad," Justin immediately jumps to my defense as he grabs and holds my hand in his lap. "I've known I was gay for a while now. That has nothing to do with Brian. But, I do like Brian and we've been seeing each other for a couple weeks now. So, you might as well get used to the idea."


"That's bullshit, Justin. You're not gay. If after working with this . . . this pervert, you now think you're gay then the only conclusion I can come to is that he's done this to you. He's put these ideas into your head somehow. Well, I'm not going to sit back and watch it. I want you out of my house right now Kinney! And you're never to come near my son again, do you hear me?"


"I'm going to keep seeing him and there's nothing you can do about it," Justin shouts like a petulant child before I can stop him.


"Justin. Please understand, it's just not right," Jennifer now adds her say, equally shocked but trying desperately to moderate the situation. "You're only seventeen and he's . . . well, a grown man. It's just not right for someone Brian's age to be making advances to a child."


"You talk like he's fifty or something. Brian's only 29 and I'm going to be 18 soon. I'm not a child and Brian hasn't done anything to me I didn't want him to," Justin plows ahead, digging the hole we've fallen into deeper with every word while I just stand there and watch the disaster happen.


". . . Nothing you didn't want him to? He's already touched you? What the fuck have you done to my son, you goddamned child molester,” Craig is now screaming at me from across the coffee table.


I simply flop down on the sofa, pinching the bridge of my nose to hold back the incipient headache that’s started behind my eyes. Internally, I’m scrambling to see if there’s any possible way to save this evening. It doesn’t look likely though as Justin and Craig stand nose to nose hollering meaner and meaner things at each other.


When I see Craig pick up some crystal knickknack from the coffee table and throw it across the room, I know that his violent streak has finally shown itself and I immediately stand up and move so that my body is between him and Justin. Jennifer is on Craig’s other side, trying without success to pull him back away from the scene.


Well, since there’s no possibility of fixing this, I might as well go for the reset. Although, I am getting pretty fucking tired of getting punched in the face by Craig. There’s really no better option though, so I just plow ahead, eager to get it over with.


“Fuck you, Craig. I can tell you don’t want me or your gay son here anymore. Fine. Can you just get out of my way then so I can get Justin back home where he belongs and start fucking him,” I yell so that I’ll be heard over the hubbub of other screaming voices.


The room goes absolutely silent for about thirty seconds. Jennifer is staring at me horrified with her hand covering her gaping mouth. Justin is beaming up at me with pride and just a glint of fear. But, Craig - poor Craig is apoplectic. His eyes look like they’re about to pop out of his skull and his teeth are bared like he’s going to literally bite my head off. I just stand there, waiting for the inevitable. It’s really too bad because this time around we almost had it right.


Craig’s fist is the only thing I see after that as it zooms straight for the spot right between my eyes.


<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<10>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


*Beep, beep, beep*


I roll over Justin and shut off the alarm. Then I nuzzle into the warmth of the snuggly blond lying in bed next to me. While I don’t enjoy being Craig’s personal punching bag, there is definitely something to be said for waking up like this over and over again.




* There really is a Morton's Steakhouse in Pittsburgh and it's on Liberty Avenue. No affiliation with me or my story.

 

End Notes:

Okay. So, the plan for Brian to become buddies with Craig didn't work out after all. I had to cave to all the fans who begged me NOT to let them become friends. But, I still don't have much input from you readers on how you think I'm going to get Brian out of this without somehow curbing Craig. I'm still soliciting ideas. Anyone? Help. TAG


Chapter 16 - Operation Convince Craig - The Justin Variation by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

I'm sorry this took so long to post - two weeks between posting chapters has to be the longest I've gone since I started writing here. Unfortunately, I seem to have written myself into the proverbial corner and I'm having trouble getting myself out. That's what I get for abandoning my carefully thought out story outline and tearing off at random following other plot lines. Never fear, though - I think I've found the perfect way to get back on track here. Thanks to all my readers for your helpful suggestions on how to redeem this story. Keep your eyes open and you just might see a few of your suggestions incorporated in the coming chapters. *wink, wink*. So, read on, and I'll try to get the next chapter up quicker now that I finally have an idea on how to finish this story. Enjoy! TAG.

 

Chapter 16 - Operation Convince Craig - The Justin Variation.

 

"Tell me, Sunshine," I ask, half jokingly, after Justin and I emerge from our early morning shower fuck, "how do you feel about kidnapping with maybe a little light bondage?"

 

"Huh?" he asks with that adorably quizzical look on his bright, open face.

 

"If I were to just keep you here indefinitely, not letting you go back to the burbs, would that really be all that horrible? Tying you up - the whole bondage thing - that's completely negotiable. As long as you stayed voluntarily that wouldn't be necessary. . . " I start to explain, the end of my sentence tapering off into a mere mumble as I contemplate the possible consequences of that course of action.

 

"Um, Brian, you're kinda freaking me out with the kidnapping shit," he responds as he towels himself off, affording me a lovely view of his naked bubble butt and those yards and yards of supple soft ivory skin.

 

"Just ignore me, Sunshine. It wouldn't work anyway. You'd have to stay hidden for months and way too many people saw us together last night both on Liberty Avenue and at the hospital. Those dyke friends of Lindsey's would give me up in a heartbeat. They'd be sure to pin it on me right off and I don't want any more close encounters with the police."

 

"Still a little freaked over here," Justin comments as he playfully flicks the end of his towel at me.

 

I catch the towel and use it to reel in my blond. "Hush, Twink. I'm thinking here," I say, grappling him to me, flipping him onto his back and pinning him under me so I can attack his delicious bitable lips, which effectively shuts up any further complaints about possible freaky kidnappings.

 

Sticking with what's worked best so far, I easily talk the horny twink into skipping school for what's now becoming my standard post-reset sex marathon. Hell, if it ain't broke don't fix it, right? I make sure to warn off Mikey so we're not interrupted - I'm still mad at him - and then spend the whole day sucking and fucking my heart out with the incredible insatiable Twinkie. This part of the multiple lives thing I like!

 

The boy naps later that afternoon, half sprawled across my chest with his blond mop tucked under my chin, and I rethink my plan while I subconsciously play with Justin's sleek golden hair. My last life wasn't really all that bad. It was actually going pretty well until I goofed up at that stupid dinner party - fucking domestic shit always screws me. What do I know about dinner parties? I was raised by a brutal child abuser and a drunken sot, so I didn't get a lot of practice at dinner party etiquette as a kid.

 

But, until I stupidly gave away my interest in Justin before we had a chance to get Craig fully comfortable with the general gay thing, it was actually not bad. Craig even seemed okay with the idea of me being gay. It was only when he thought I was interested in Justin that he freaked. I wonder if it was Justin being gay or Justin being gay with ME that really caused the outburst.

 

I mean, I know he wasn't thrilled that his son was gay, but if I hadn't been around that first time, maybe Justin's coming out would have gone at least a little smoother? Jenn once told me that that was what worried her the most when Justin first came out - not that he was gay, but that he was involved with someone who was so much older than he was. Was that Craig's real beef? Maybe if Craig got adjusted to the idea of having a gay son, without the bonus images of his baby boy being fucked up the ass regularly by a known reprobate like myself, he might not have gone completely homophobe on Justin.

 

So, maybe we have to somehow ease Craig through Justin's coming out first. Once he's accustomed to the idea of his son being gay, then, maybe, we could introduce me as Justin's boyfriend. The biggest drawback of this idea being that it'll mean a lot longer that Justin and I will have to hide our relationship. But, I've got all the time in world - literally - so, I guess it’s worth a try. I've got nothing to lose except another life and those seem to be interchangeable. I think, maybe, with just a few small changes, our last plan might still be workable.

 

So, after Justin and I are both totally fucked out, I again take him to dinner at a nice restaurant - avoiding the Diner and family entanglements for the time being. Then I broach the subject of Justin coming out to his folks so that, eventually, we could be together openly. Last time he seemed more excited by this prospect, but that's probably because we'd planned to come out as a couple. This time he'd be on his own, at least for a while. He's understandably not that excited by the idea.

 

I can't blame him. Who the fuck wants to come out to their parents - unless your parent is Debbie Novotny, that is. Fuck, I didn't get around to it till I was 30. Who am I to tell Justin to take that step when he's only 17? That's why I don't push, but just put the idea out there for now.

 

In the meantime I go ahead and offer him the internship job at Ryder. That part of the plan worked out pretty well last go 'round, so I want to stick with it again this time. Plus, I love having that little extra assurance that I'll get my regular dose of Sunshine. Justin, of course, jumps at the offer.

 

The next few weeks go by smoothly. Justin's working at Ryder's a couple days a week and spending most of his weekends with me engaged in a series of 'special projects' that often require him to put in those long, hard hours deep into the night with me. It's such a pleasure to have him working, hard, under me.

 

I've even slowly worked it so Justin's becoming an accepted part of my Liberty Avenue crowd, without any negative repercussions yet. That first Sunday morning I took him and introduced him to Debbie, who predictably adopted him as one of her boys at first sight. I made sure that we went to the Diner early that time, though, which meant that the rest of the gang were all still home sleeping off the prior night's excesses and couldn't hassle us.

 

Next, I had my blond and a couple of the other Ryder employees join me at Woody's for drinks after work one night. Having Justin simply 'show up' at the bar along with a bunch of others, especially after I explained that the young artist was now working for me, was easier for Michael's wee brain to handle than a direct declaration of my intentions. Michael didn't even comment when, by the end of the evening, the rest of the employees had disappeared and Justin and I were wrapped around each other playing tonsil hockey at a secluded table.

 

After about the third or fourth time that Justin had just happened to show up at Babylon or Woody's or the Diner with me, Mikey finally confronted me about why I was always with 'that Twink' these days. I swallowed the snarky comment I wanted to throw at him and instead said simply, "I like him, Mikey. He's sorta sweet." Short and to the point - it shut Michael up immediately. He sat there the rest of the night with a confused look on his face but didn't say anything.

 

That Sunday I brought Justin with me to Deb's for family dinner. By now everyone had met Justin and had seen the two of us together a few times so it wasn't a shock to see the two of us entering together. And, although I got a little ribbing in private from first Lindsey and then Emmett about the 'Stud' finally settling down, nobody said anything derogatory about me to Justin or called him a 'trick'. No one tried to warn him off, concerned that I would inevitably hurt him. Michael just looked at the two of us with that slightly confused expression, but didn't comment. In fact, the whole meal went strangely well. I guess patience and taking things slower are the key - neither of which are really my forte, but I'm learning.

 

Justin still wasn't ready to come out to his folks, though. I knew he was thinking about it from things he'd said and the way he looked at me sometimes. Once, when we were hanging out at Woody's with the gang, the guys got into a discussion about how they'd all come out and I caught Justin looking at me with this intense stare as if he were trying to see into my hidden thoughts. I wondered if I should try and talk to him about it or if he'd think I was pushing if I did. In the end I said nothing - I just didn't think the boy was ready.

 

The matter was eventually decided for us though, thanks to the universal nosiness of mothers everywhere. Jennifer had gone through Justin's backpack one day while he was getting ready for school and found several questionable items that brought her suspicions about her son to a head. She confronted him on the issue that afternoon when the two of them were on their way to do some shopping at Nike Town.

 

"She knows, Brian. My mother knows," Justin shouted as soon as he let himself into my loft later that night. "She went through my stuff, damn it."

 

"Slow down, Sunshine," I say as I pull him close to me, unsuccessfully trying to comfort him with my touch. He quickly breaks free and resumes his pacing around the floor, though. "Tell me what happened. What exactly did she say."

 

"She asked me if I had a boyfriend. I didn't know what to say. And then she asked me, 'then who's Brian?' When I asked how she knew, she said she'd found clothing that wasn't mine and then she looked through my sketchbook and saw my drawings and . . . well, I'd written your name in there too," he explains, blushing prettily at the end when he obviously doesn't want to disclose why my name was written in his sketch pad - oh, Sunshine, you are a silly, sentimental little twat, aren't you? "Now what the fuck do we do?"

 

"There's no need to freak out, Justin. This may be a good thing. So, your mom knows you're gay. She didn't threaten to kick your ass or throw you out, right? She might be a little weirded out at first, but if you give her time, she'll adjust," I advise him, knowing full well that Jennifer won't be a problem in the long run. "Once she's okay with the idea, maybe she'll help you explain to Craig. Just, do yourself a favor and don't bring me up yet, okay? Let them get used to the idea first and then we'll see about telling them exactly who your mystery 'Brian' is."

 

I hate not being able to just come right out and tell his parents how much I love Justin. I hate putting him in a position where he has to be less than honest about who he is and what our connection is. I REALLY hate not being there to support him while he has to do all this alone. But I realize that I can't coddle him - he'll be a stronger man if he learns that he can do this on his own. And I can't protect him from everything. If I do butt in right now, it's likely to make things worse. So I just have to sit in the shadows and wait and see what happens.

 

All I can do is hold him, tell him everything is going to be alright and that I'll be waiting for him no matter what. I hope I'm not lying about that part where 'everything's going to be alright'. Come on Craig, I think to myself, don't make me into a liar. I then make sweet love to my blond for the next couple hours before, regretfully, sending him back home to the lion's den accompanied only by a handful of printouts off the internet about how to come out to your parents.* I can't even drive him all the way there for fear that we'll be seen. He knows to call, though, if there are any problems and I trust he's strong enough to handle this. He's always been stronger than me in that respect.

 

The brave little fucker handles everything magnificently, of course. I didn't really need to worry, I guess. Justin goes home and talks with Jennifer and the two of them agree to break the news to Craig together that weekend. He's a fucking nervous wreck the rest of the week, but when Friday night comes and they sit Craig down after a nice home cooked suburbia meal, Justin simply tells him right out that he's gay and asks that his father support him.

 

Justin calls me immediately afterward and gives me the play-by-play description of what happened. Craig follows the textbook psych 101 response pattern: shock, denial, and then guilt. This was all to be expected according to the research we'd done. But then he stalls at the point where he says 'he's not ready to deal with this right now'.

 

*Colorado State University - How To Come Out To Your Parents.

 

However, this outcome is a far sight better than I had expected, considering his unpredictable and violent outbreaks during earlier times. We know that we'll have to be patient (again with the fucking patience), give him time to adjust to the idea and hopefully he'll eventually accept it. I just hope that he'll get to that acceptance stage sooner rather than later. There's no fucking way I can wait the several months to couple years the literature says it might take. But, on the good side, Craig hasn't threatened to throw Justin out or send him to military school. Best of all, he hasn't hit anyone yet, especially me.

 

We wait another six weeks after that without Craig making any appreciable progress on the tolerance scale. According to Justin, his father hardly speaks to him anymore. In the meantime we've introduced Jenn to Debbie - after making Deb promise NOT to say anything yet about me - and Jenn's been fully indoctrinated into PFLAG, taken to the GLC for some innocuous community events and introduced to the Liberty Diner. She's already becoming acclimated to the Liberty Avenue scene and seems as supportive as ever of Justin. Jenn is a great mother.

 

I'm getting tired of waiting on Craig, though. I can tell how hard this is on my blond. He's dwelling on the problem - he constantly seems upset and worried. His father, unlike mine, has always been there for him in the past. They might not have been that close in recent years, but Justin's never had to deal with this type of distance and indifference from someone he loves. I don't like seeing Justin hurt. I don't care who or what's causing him to feel bad. I'm not going to let Craig get away with this much longer, even if he is Justin's father.

 

Right now Justin could really use his dad's support, too. School is hell for him at the moment. Unfortunately, Justin was a little too enthusiastic about things right after coming out to his folks and decided to be out and proud at school as well. So, even though he hasn't taken any outings to the equipment shed with horney football players needing handjobs this time around, he's still getting harassed. Fucking bullies never change.

 

In fact, it seems almost worse this time than in my previous incarnations. I'm not sure why, but Hobbs and his crew have definitely stepped up their hate filled antics. I'm starting to think that handjob may have actually tempered Hobbs' hatred before - maybe that connection, even though he later denied that he liked it, was enough to keep him from pursuing Justin quite so vehemently. This time around, I've actually seen bruises on Justin's back and chest more than once in the past few weeks.

 

I've offered to step in and scare the shit out of the little fuckers more than once, but Justin won't let me. It's too bad since I've got a couple of buddies from the gym who are absolutely built and who would love to beat the shit out of a few pampered, private school closet cases. Trust me, once these guys were through, none of the jocks at that school would ever even think about bothering my boy. But, Justin keeps telling me its 'no big deal' and that he can 'take care of it'. I fucking hope he's right. I still think that the school should be controlling the situation better and that Craig should be stepping up to support his son. Fucking Craig.

 

Justin's birthday is coming up in a couple weeks, though, and I want this shit with Craig resolved by then, one way or another. I've screwed up too many of Justin's birthdays in the past, and I owe him at least one happy one. I'd like to throw him a party or take him out or something. I don't want the problems he's having with his dad hanging over us and putting a damper on the fun. So, I figure that Craig's time to mull things over has pretty much come to an end. Time to move on with the plan.

 

So, I put in motion all the plans I took last time around that seemed to work. First, I set up a party for the interns at work and I get Justin to bring his parents. At the party I manage to win over both Craig and Jennifer - again. Then, I wrangle Craig into taking me to a Dartmouth alumni meeting and take him out for a steak dinner beforehand. It’s easier this time, since I already know how to steer the conversation and we again end up drinking together at the bar, blowing off the alums altogether. And, once again, Jennifer thinks to thank me with dinner at their home. So far, so good.

 

This time, though, I tell Justin not to advise the ‘rents that I’m gay ahead of time. I figure that we’d best try at least one more neutral encounter, allowing me to cement my ‘friend’ status with the adults, before they learn my secret. I also tell Justin to please keep his distance from me during the dinner since I know I won’t be able to keep my hands off him if he gets so near me again this time.

 

It turns out that I didn’t have to warn Justin off though. Since he didn’t tell Jennifer that I was gay before the dinner, she went ahead and invited a ‘date’ for me - her single girl friend, Rose. Arrrrrgh. The whole evening is more tedious than I can even bear to describe. Rose, who turned out to be a 35 year old obstetrician who’s never been married and whose biological clock demanding that she start making babies is ticking away so loudly she can’t think straight, might have been a nice enough person but she was the absolute worst choice of a dinner companion for a gay man you could possibly imagine.

 

The whole evening, Rose is hanging on me, touching my arm when she talks, simpering in my direction and laughing at everything I say regardless of whether I’m joking or not, smiling at me with that ingratiatingly false smile, flirting and batting her eyes and otherwise just annoying the fuck out of me. I’m not sure how successful I’m being at keeping the utter disgust from showing on my face. But, by the time we’re seated on the couch having after dinner drinks, I feel like I will break Rose’s arm if she touches me just one more time.  Justin is meanwhile sitting across the room from me trying desperately to stop himself from laughing - often unsuccessfully - and completely enjoying my horrible predicament. I’m going to have to punish him severely when I finally get him alone.  

 

When the evening ends, I think I’ve accomplished my goal in getting Craig to accept me as a ‘friend’, despite the distraction of fighting off Rose’s attentions all night. Then Jennifer, the conniving little busybody, asks me right as I’m getting ready to leave, if I wouldn’t mind driving Rose home. It seems that she came over tonight with Jennifer and, of course, she shouldn’t have to take a cab home when there’s a convenient single man in the house. Fuck! So much for my plan to sneak Justin out and get him to come back to the loft with me tonight. Fucking blind dates from hell!

 

Fine. I’ll take the baby-crazy bitch home, but after we leave here I don’t have to be nice to her anymore, do I? I surreptitiously text Justin that I’ll be back to pick him up after I lose the old bag and then graciously escort Rose out the door and down to my Jeep. She immediately insinuates her arm through mine as we go down the walk and I just want to scream ‘ICK, ICK, ICK, GET OFF ME, BITCH’ and then run away. I don’t though, since it would defeat the purpose of trying to get Jenn and Craig to like me. However, I may have to pour a bottle of bleach over my arm and hands and burn these clothes afterwards just to get rid of the ickiness streaming off her and all over me. I’m never EVER doing this again, though. I don’t give a crap what the ‘plan’ calls for.

 

Rose babbles the entire time I’m driving her home and I don’t even pretend to be listening. I’m already planning in my mind exactly what I’m going to do to Justin tonight. He’ll rue the day he laughed at me, the little twat. I think I’ll get out that stainless steel cock ring I’ve been saving for a special occasion and show him just how long I can torture him without letting him cum. Oh, the delectable things I can do to him - I’ll start with a good, long rimming while I stroke his cock so very slowly that he’s screaming for me to speed up. Then . . . .

 

“Would you like to come in for a drink, Brian?” Rose says as we pull up to her house, interrupting my lovely fantasies of blond boy ass on my face - is murder too drastic a response in this situation?

 

“Rose,” I start, turning in my seat to look at her directly. “You’ve been a lovely dinner companion this evening (I’m totally lying!), but I need to tell you right up front, that I’m not interested. I’m sorry. I had no idea that Jennifer was going to try to set us up or I would have said something earlier. See, I’m gay.”

 

YES! It feels sooooooo good to finally say that to her. Her face sort of freezes for about sixty seconds and I’m worried that she’s about to cry or shout at me or something. Then, all of a sudden, she breaks out laughing uproariously. In fact, she’s laughing so hard that a couple tears start to leak out of the corners of her eyes. I’m at a complete loss here. I have no idea what she’s laughing about and I’m actually getting a little annoyed at being laughed at. It’s been a very, very long night and I’m not really in the mood to be laughed at when I’ve been trying to be pleasant and charming and not to kick her to the ground all night. I think she must finally sense that I’m getting peeved though because the laughter tapers off to intermittent giggles soon after I start to really scowl at her.

 

“I’m sorry, Brian. It’s just that I’m so relieved that you told me that. I was really worried that I was doing something horribly wrong all night when you weren’t responding to me at all. God, I’m so sorry that Jenn tried to set us up. You should have said something earlier, though,” she finally manages to sputter between giggles.

 

“I would have said something, but I didn’t want to embarrass you,” I explain.

 

“Well, thank you anyway for a nice time. You really are incredibly charming, you know. You sure you’re not interested?” Rose tries one more time, but this time with a smile on her face.

 

“Sorry. No. No fucking way in hell, actually. But thank you for the compliment,” I tell her, my tongue in my cheek and a smile on my face to take the sting out of my words since she’s being so understanding about this.

 

Rose gets out, still chuckling, and I drive like a fucking maniac back towards Justin's house, parking behind 'our' tree a few blocks away. I so need to sink into his creamy white ass and block out all the images from the rest of this distasteful night. If he doesn't hurry, I might have to claw all my skin off to get rid of that icky feeling from where Rose kept touching me.

 

"Ur ass, here. NOW! Need 2 fuck u rt away!" I text Justin as soon as I'm parked, watching the little blinking dots on the digital clock on my dashboard which indicate the passing of each second until he gets here.

 

Thankfully, the little shit comes running up to the Jeep before I've even counted two hundred blinking dots. He must have been waiting for me nearby, since he's not even breathing hard. The asshole is still chuckling though and as soon as our eyes meet he breaks out into a huge, uninhibited peal of laughter. I'd be really pissed at him if he weren't so beautiful when he's like this. He's fucking glowing with happiness and glee right now. If I weren't already practically drooling to get into his ass, seeing him like this would have done the trick.

 

I can't even speak. I'm so tied up feeling a combination of annoyance, anger, lust and love (yes, I'm thinking 'love' and I don't give a shit who knows it). I do manage to push open the door, pull Justin into the Jeep so that he's straddling my lap and immediately claim his sweet full lips to shut him up. It works perfectly. No more laughing, just panting, moaning, and the occasional breathy 'Brian'.

 

This is a desperate situation, so I already know we're not going to make it home before I fuck this gorgeous, giggling morsel. To hell with being prudent - I need to be inside his ass now. I therefore waste no time pulling the fly of his 501's open and sliding his jeans down just far enough that I have access to his hot little hole. My good little boy is being very compliant and helps out by scrunching his knees up so that I have a nice straight shot, too. I practically tear open my own slacks and slide a condom on one-handed while my other hand stays tangled in his luscious soft hair, pulling his face closer so I can kiss him even deeper. When I can’t take it any longer I pull the lever that lets the seat recline all the way and pull Justin down on top of me as the seat falls back.

 

"Mmmmmm. Yes, Brian," my boy moans, his lips pressed against mine as I start to finger his tight entrance. "Hurry. I need you, Brian. Every time she touched you I felt so jealous. It made me so fucking horny. I wanted to be touching you all night. That's enough, already. Please, just fuck me, now."

 

Have I ever said how much I adore it when Justin gets all needy and demanding. Oh, yeah! He's already grabbing ahold of my dick and lifting his ass slightly so that he can impale himself. He doesn't go slowly either. With one rapid thrust he slams his body down onto me so far and so hard that my balls slap loudly against his ass. The groan he lets out then is the most erotic sound I think I've ever heard.

 

After that he's just riding me wantonly, rocking and swiveling his slim hips exotically, driving me fucking crazy with lust at every twist. He's so amazingly beautiful. I love watching him. I love the feeling of his tight, hot ass muscles hugging my dick as he rides me. I love the uninhibited noises that pour out of his lips between each passionate kiss. I love him, damn it. Fuck, I wish this could go on forever.

 

We're both way too far gone though for this to last very long. Every nerve fiber in my body is tingling already and I can feel that pulling need deep in my gut that makes me want to engulf all of Justin whole. I arch my back to thrust upward into him as hard and far as I can and then I hear his cry of ‘Brian’ as his muscles begin to contract and spasm. The sound of his cry and the constriction along the length of my cock pull me over the edge with him and I revel in the release as the fire from the pit of my stomach lights my nerves on fire and the feelings of love and desire and need travel from synapse to synapse overwhelming my entire body.

 

Justin collapses onto my chest, heedless of the pools of cum now being smeared all over his shirt. We’re both a mess, but I couldn’t care less either. I hold him close for the moment, not ready to pull out, not ready to give up a centimeter of this closeness. I’m still amazed at how in tune we always are. How did he know exactly what I needed tonight? He always knows, though. That’s why I have to make this work, somehow, finally so that this - this feeling, this moment, this sense of completeness - will never have to end.

 

When I finally notice that his skin is starting to feel cool, I shift him off me into the passenger seat and pull my seat back up to its normal position. I quickly start the car so the heater will kick in and warm us up. I start to pull out from behind the trees and negotiate around the dumpster behind the convenience store next to our little trysting spot. We’re both still grinning like fucking jack-o-lanterns at our crazy antics. I pull my body across to the other side of the car so I can kiss those grinning lips one more time - how can I help it - just as the interior of the Jeep is flooded momentarily by bright white light and I’m blinded for a second. Then, the headlights of the car that had just turned into the convenience store parking lot are shut off and I can see again to drive.

 

I put the Jeep back into drive and start to pull out of the parking area. As I pass the car that interrupted our last kiss, I feel that eerie feeling you get when someone is staring at you. I turn to see a group of teenage boys getting out of a beat up old wreck of a muscle car. There is one tall, sandy-haired, well muscled boy who is leaning back against the side of the car and looking at the Jeep with an intent glare. He’s looking straight at me and our eyes meet for a brief moment, but it’s long enough to scare the shit out of me. The look of hatred I see in his eyes is only slightly tempered by the glint of lust and something else that I can only think of as jealousy.

 

Fuck! Why is it that no matter what Justin and I do, we can’t ever escape from the hatred of one Chris Hobbs?

 

 

End Notes:

 

Yes, I know - ANOTHER CLIFFHANGER. Don't hate me, please. I had to put that in there in order to give myself a little hook for where I need to take the story. You'll see. Trust Me! It's harder than you'd think to continually torture poor Brian and still not drive him completely over the edge into permanent insanity. Now, I have to go spend at least an hour studying for my Microbiology midterm and then I'll be back at the computer writing again so I can rescue you all from the cliff. Just hang on till then. Stay alive! I will save you! TAG

 

 

Chapter 17 - Almost Perfect? by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

Sooooo, it looks like I'm back on track again with this story. I'm afraid that that means that Brian still hasn't quite figured out how to get himself out of this mess - there will have to be a few more 'almost rights' before he gets it. But, at least now I know how to get him there. Thanks again to all my dedicated readers for their wonderful and wise suggestions. And, without further ado, here's the chapter . . . Enjoy! TAG


Chapter 17 - Almost Perfect?


As I expected, Rose doesn’t waste any time telling her friend Jennifer that the set up she tried to foist on the two of us was a complete bust and why. Justin’s laughing again when he calls me almost as soon as I drop him off back in his own neighborhood the next day. His mom apparently cornered him as soon as he got in the house, demanding to know if Justin was aware that I was gay and why he hadn’t told her.


“‘You didn’t ask,’ I told her,” Justin says with a chuckle as he describes the scene for me. “She just sputtered and then starts complaining about how embarrassed she is now and that I should have said something, blah, blah, blah.”


“What about your dad?” I ask, unconcerned about Jennifer’s embarrassment and Rose’s dashed hopes, worried only about the one variable that we really need to concentrate on to make this work.


"He was just sitting in his recliner watching tv and laughing,” Justin relates. “He said that even if you hadn’t been gay, after watching the way Rose threw herself at you, you probably would have run away screaming.  He apparently thought the whole thing was highly entertaining. No comments at all about you being gay or anything like that. And, he even laughed along with me when I joked about the look on your face when Rose spilled the coffee and then started to dab at your thigh with the napkin - you looked like you were going to puke, it was so funny. So, what do you think?”


“I think you have a vicious sense of humor, Sunshine. But, I guess it was worth it if we got Craig to loosen up a bit. The fact that he didn't freak over the idea of me being gay is encouraging. Of course, I will NEVER go through anything like that ever again in this or any future life, so get all your giggles out now, Sunshine,” I warn him amid another series of chuckles from the other end of the phone line, although after the extensive all-night fuck session I spent with Justin last night, I’m not feeling nearly as violated or dirty as I did earlier and I’m almost able to start seeing the humor in the situation myself.


"How much longer do you think we should give him before we tell him about us?" Justin asks, the insecurity in his voice coming across the phone line clearly.


"I don't know," I answer truthfully. "Maybe we should ease him into this just a bit more, though, rather than just coming right out and telling him everything all at once."


"But, Brian, this is all so annoying. I hate sneaking around and . . . "


"I know, Sunshine. Fuck, I know - trust me, normally I'd be the last person on Earth to advocate all this subterfuge. I've always said that if people didn't like the way I lived my life, then fuck 'em. But, this is too important to me. You're too important, Justin. I don't want to mess this up. So, if I can be patient about this, you can too, Sunshine."


Listen to me going on about patience. Who the hell am I turning into? But, it's true that this is too important to mess up. So, I CAN be patient, if I have to be.


So, Justin and I decide to walk Craig through little baby steps. First, Justin announces to his parents that he's got a date, but he refuses to tell his parents who it is. For about two weeks, he casually talks about meeting this mystery 'date' for coffee after school, at the movies or some other such innocuous outings (all of which we actually do, just to add credence to the stories, and because I'll do anything for this boy).


At first Craig is demonstrative about just how unhappy he is with the whole idea of his son dating another boy. The first time Justin mentions it, Craig gets up from the dinner table in the middle of the meal and stomps out, not saying another word. But, he doesn't try to stop Justin, which is progress, of a sort, I guess.


Justin, typically, perseveres and keeps up his constant campaign to inure his father to the concept of him dating another man. The second time Justin mentions a date he's planning, Craig simply scowls at his plate and stays grumpily silent for the rest of the meal. After a couple of weeks of Justin constantly talking about meeting his 'friend' for this or that, and going on and on about how much fun we had, Craig seems unhappily resigned to the whole idea and doesn't bother to even comment when Justin mentions his next date.


Meanwhile, I've invited Craig to meet me a couple of times for drinks after work. All in all, he's been pretty decent to hang around with. The first time after the 'Rose' incident, he was a little weird acting until we'd both got a couple beers under our belts and he gruffly advised me that he 'wasn't like that' if that's why I was inviting him out for drinks. When it dawned on me that he was worried I was trying to come on to him, I couldn't help but laugh so hard I choked on my scotch. Once I'd convinced him though that he definitely wasn't my type and that I had no designs on his body, we started to get along pretty well. We even had some good laughs together about the whole Rose debacle. In the end, Craig and I seemed to maybe even be developing a sort of friendship - which scared me more than the thought of him beating the crap out of me again.


Next, I have Justin tell his parents that he's going out to dinner the next Saturday with his new mystery man and afterward we're going out to a club. Jenn, of course, is nothing but excited for her boy. She's been pestering him from day one to find out more about this mystery person that her son is seeing and to hear every detail of every date. But, up till now, Craig has maintained a stony silence about the entire topic. When Justin tells them about the big dinner date, though, Craig finally takes notice.


"Who is this kid, Justin?" Craig demands. "Do we know him or his parents? And, what is this club you're going to? You're not quite eighteen yet, young man, so you better not even think about trying to get into some club where you shouldn't be. I don't want you getting into trouble and I don't want you drinking, either. I want to know a lot more about this whole plan before I agree to this. I think it's time your mother and I meet this boyfriend of yours."


"He said it just like that - he didn't even blink when he said he wanted to meet my 'boyfriend'," Justin tells me the next day, ecstatic at how much more accepting his father seems to be getting. "All he seemed worried about was the club and me getting into trouble. I don't think he even thought once about the fact that I was planning on going out with another man. Can you believe it? So, now what do we do? I just put him off saying that I'd talk to my 'boyfriend' about it and get back to them - I didn't tell them who you were yet. But, dad said there wouldn't be a date till he met you and found out more about the club."


"I guess we tell them, then," I say, not sure if I'm ready for this.


Ready or not, it's time, so I pick up the phone and call Craig Taylor. I try to sound casual as I ask if he and his wife want to meet me for drinks tomorrow evening at the Fairmont. I figure that I'll be better off doing this in public just in case it gets ugly - maybe their sense of propriety (or at least Jennifer's) will prevent Craig from punching me in a crowded upscale hotel bar. Craig readily accepts and says he'll meet me at 6:30.


I'm almost ready to chicken out and come up with a new plan by the middle of the afternoon the next day. It doesn't help my confidence any that Justin is late getting to work today and he seems even more jumpy than I am. Unfortunately, when he finally does arrive, I'm in the middle of a conference call and I've got no time to really say more than a few words to him before it's time to leave for the Fairmont.  


On the short drive over to the hotel, Justin seems off somehow. I guess it could be that he's just really nervous but I'm not sure. Several times he starts to say something but then stops. When we're walking from the car to the hotel he kinda jumps a little when I put my arm around his shoulders and he shies away from me. When I reach over and put my hand on his shoulder to try to calm him, he flinches away. I just put it down to anxiety, since I know I'm feeling like jumping out of my own skin. I try to remind myself that, worst case scenario, I get beat up again and just have to start all over again tomorrow. Justin doesn't have that to reassure him, though, so I don't really know how to comfort him. I can only trust that this time I've fixed things for good.


I can see that Craig and Jennifer are already seated at a small corner table when Justin and I arrive at the bar. I pull Justin around the corner behind a wide wooden pillar and give him a quick kiss and a squeeze before we head into the ordeal. Justin gasps a bit loudly and pulls away from my hand around his waist. I'm about to ask him what's the matter, since it seems like maybe there's something more going on with my blond than just ordinary nerves, but he grabs me by the hand and leads me back towards the doorway without saying anything further. I can only follow.


Removing my hand from Justin's before we get too near the table, I put on my best charming Kinney smile and greet the two older Taylors.


"Justin, honey, we didn't expect you," Jennifer says as soon as she glimpses the two of us nearing the table.


"Hey, Mom. Dad."


"Justin," Craig brusquely greets his son then stands to greet me with his hand extended jovially towards me. "How's it going, Kinney?"


"Can't complain, Craig," I respond while shaking his hand and then sitting in the chair next to Justin. "Jennifer, you look lovely. Thanks for joining us."


"Well, thank you for inviting me. I wasn't sure after what I put you through at dinner last time if you'd ever speak to me again," she says with the perfect little self-deprecating laugh. "But, you should have said something, Brian."


"It wasn't that bad," I lie. "Besides I didn't want to embarrass poor Rose."


"Well, next time I won't try to fix you up with one of my girl friends. I promise," Jennifer swears, holding up her hand as a pledge. "Although, I do know a couple of nice single young men," she adds jokingly.


"Actually, that won't be necessary," I say, taking a huge swallow of the scotch which the waiter conveniently deposits in front of me right then. "I've started seeing someone recently, so you definitely won't be needing to fix me up with anyone."


"Oh, that's wonderful, Brian," Jennifer gushes. "I hope he knows how lucky he is to land a catch like you."


"He's quite a catch himself, Jennifer," I say, smiling at her while I reach under the table to grab Justin's hand and take a deep breath before continuing. "In fact, that's really why I wanted to talk to both of you tonight."


"If you're looking for gay dating advice, I'm afraid you're barking up the wrong tree, Kinney," Craig jokes, digging his elbow into my ribs to emphasize the humor of his not so witty quip.


"No, that's not exactly what I'm looking for," I say, sighing and looking over to see Justin nodding and smiling in my direction. "I'm actually asking for your permission to date your son."


"What?" Both of the older Taylors say in unison, with identical looks of confusion on their faces as they glare at first me and then Justin.


"Mom, dad, Brian is the person I've been seeing," Justin says in a remarkably calm voice, despite the fact that I can see him sweating now profusely, as he pulls our hands up above the edge of the table so everyone can see our entwined fingers. "You wanted to meet him, sooooo here we are."


"But. . . but . . . but," Jennifer stutters, unable to finish her thought.


Craig isn't as tongue-tied, though. "What the hell is going on here Kinney?"


"Justin and I have been seeing each other for a little while now. I want to keep seeing him and I thought it was only right that you two should know," I start to explain. "I care about him, a lot. You can be sure that I'll take good care of him and . . . " Fuck, could I sound more pathetic?


"But, you're his boss. He's only seventeen. You can't . . . You're so much . . . " Jennifer tries again but once again stutters to a halt.


"Mom. I'm going to be eighteen next week. I'm not a baby. And we know that there's an age difference between the two of us, but that shouldn't matter to you as long as it doesn't matter to us," Justin preempts Jennifer's objections, his breathing starting to get ragged with what I suppose is emotion and his face showing obvious signs of distress.


"Craig! Say something. Do something. This . . . I just don't think . . . Craig?" Jennifer implores her husband for some support.


"What the fuck do you want me to say, Jennifer?" Craig responds, resignation ringing clearly from his voice. "The boy's almost eighteen. He's old enough to decide this shit on his own. He's not going to listen to us even if we do object, so what exactly do you want me to say?"


"But, Craig," Jennifer says again, clearly still not resigned to the situation.


"Mom, please. You're being ridiculous," Justin says, turning towards her and voicing more than a hint of anger at this point, but I sense that under the anger is something else - pain?


"Justin, you do whatever you want. I know you won't listen to your mother or me even if we were to object to this . . . this . . . whatever this is. I don't understand any of this. Just don't come crying to me when it all goes to shit," Craig says in a quiet and disappointed tone as he gets up and starts to walk away from the table.


"Dad, please," Justin pleads as he stands up and grabs for his father's retreating shoulder, his voice catching as he speaks and ending with a little grunt of pain or emotion, or both, I can't quite tell although I can see he's upset.


Several things happen simultaneously at this point. I stand up behind Justin to support him, placing my hand on the small of his back, not exactly happy with this outcome but thinking privately that this is a better response from Craig than I had actually expected. Jennifer stands up too, looking back and forth between her husband and her son. Craig grabs Justin's hand from his shoulder and forcefully pulls the hand away, jerking Justin's body with the momentum and turning away to continue towards the door in a quiet fury. At the same time, Justin cries out when his arm falls from Craig's shoulder, wrapping his other arm around his midsection and half-turning towards me with a look of pain and surprise on his face as his eyes roll back into his head and he slowly collapses into my arms.


"Justin? My god, what did you do to him?" Jennifer yells at me as I carefully lay the unconscious boy down on the carpeting next to the table where we were sitting.


"I didn't do anything. I don't know . . . " I'm lost for both words and actions as I kneel next to Justin, not sure what happened or what to do next, looking up at the faces of the people gathering around us.


"Excuse me. Excuse me, please. I'm a doctor," I hear an unfamiliar voice directing as a short, heavy-set, middle aged black woman pushes her way through the throngs of gaping onlookers.


The woman kneels down next to me and immediately begins to examine Justin. First she reaches two fingers down to press against his neck under his jaw. After only a few moments, she bends over and places her ear over his mouth, apparently listening for breathing sounds. Then she grabs Justin's wrist, pressing her fingers against his pulse point while looking at her wristwatch for about a minute.


"What's his name?" She demands of me next and I quickly tell her as she hands me a cell phone. "Call 911 and tell them we have a medical emergency and need an ambulance immediately. I'll talk to the dispatcher as soon as I'm done here."


As I follow orders, pressing the buttons to call 911 and mechanically repeating what the woman told me to say, I watch as she tries to rouse Justin by calling his name. When he doesn't respond, she opens his mouth and looks intently inside, but apparently doesn't see anything. Next she lifts up his shirt and we both gasp at the sight that meets our eyes. Justin's stomach and chest are a mass of dark purple and black bruises. The doctor gently runs her hands over the area until she feels something that catches her interest and stops with her hand over his ribs just beneath his right arm.


The woman quickly grabs the cell phone out of my hands and starts talking rapidly to the dispatcher on the other end. "Hello. This is Dr, Emily Winston. I've examined the victim and confirmed he still has a pulse and is breathing shallowly but he's been unconscious for approximately five minutes now. His airway appears clear but I think he's got at least one broken rib and most likely a punctured lung. I see extensive bruising around his lower and mid torso. There may be other internal injuries as well - he shows extensive tenderness in the abdomen."


The woman stops speaking for several moments, seemingly listening to the directions being given over the phone. I can't seem to do or say anything as I just sit there holding on to Justin's cold hand, staring at the inky black stains on his usually beautiful pale skin. I'm only momentarily distracted by someone gripping my upper arm and then a blonde head leaning against me on that side. I look over to see Jennifer Taylor kneeling next to me, her hand wrapped thightly around my bicep as she cries into my shoulder. Craig is standing behind her with one hand on her far shoulder. I just look back down at the fragile looking form lying on the floor in front of me and quietly fall to pieces as I flashback to another time when Justin was lying helpless before me.


Everything after that is a blur. I vaguely remember arguing with someone - Justin's mother, maybe - about who would ride with him in the ambulance. I think I won by default since I simply refused to let go of his hand. I remember sitting in one of those hard plastic chairs outside the ER, again, waiting for someone to come tell me what the fuck happened and whether or not Justin's going to be okay. I remember Jennifer and Craig arriving at the hospital and joining me in the uncomfortable chairs. But otherwise, time seems to pass erratically in fits and starts and never going the normal speed from one event to the next.


At some point, a doctor appears and tells us that Justin has several fractured ribs, one of which apparently punctured his right lung - probably when Craig jerked his arm so hard - causing what he calls a pneumothorax. Justin's lung collapsed. They have to do immediate surgery to repair the torn lung and put a tube in his chest to help relieve the pressure so he can breathe. Hearing all this makes it hard for me to breathe and I collapse back into the chair I'd just risen from.


"How did this happen? Who did this," Jenn asks no one in particular as the tears stream down her face messing up her usually perfect makeup.


"I can't tell you who did it," the doctor responds, "but from the rest of his injuries, it looks like your son was severely beaten. From what I saw it looks like somebody decided to use Justin for a punching bag and they got a pretty good workout. I've already reported the incident to the police. But, we'll probably have to wait for Justin to wake up to find out who is responsible."


"Hobbs," I hear my own raspy voice say even though I don't remember intending to speak.


"Who?" demands Craig, and after a couple of moments I realize his question is directed at me.


"Chris Hobbs. He and his jock buddies have been hassling Justin at school all year. I . . . I didn't know it had gotten this bad . . . " I can't go on, all I can see now are the angry grey eyes of the tall muscle bound jock staring back at me from that night after the dinner at the Taylor's."


"Chris Hobbs? That doesn't make any sense. We know the Hobbs' from the country club. Why would Chris hurt Justin like this?" Jennifer goes on, unable to fathom how the son of one of her upper crust friends could possibly be a hate filled bully.


"Because of me," I admit, my voice a choked whisper. "Because I encouraged Justin to come out to you and his friends. Because the world is full of homophobic bullies who can't bear to see people happy if their happiness is in any way different. Because Hobbs saw Justin and I kissing and he didn't like what he saw. Because I wanted Justin and I to be together and I didn't think about how dangerous it would be for him. Because no matter what I do, I can't seem to keep him safe . . . "


Nobody says anything further after that. The doctor disappears and time does its weird wonky thing where it skips around completely disregarding the clock on the wall. Jennifer and Craig are arguing in the corner of the waiting area and they keep looking over at me surreptitiously but don't dare approach me. I think I even talk to some uniformed cops briefly but strangely enough I don't remember what I've told them.


Hours, days, or maybe months later -  I'm unsure which because of the time warp present in this fucking hospital - a doctor finally comes out dressed in rumpled scrubs. He tells Jennifer and Craig that Justin is out of surgery and appears to be recovering well. Barring any complications, he should be fine.


I don't really hear whatever he says next. I feel so relieved hearing that my Sunshine will be okay that I can't listen after that. In fact, I can't really hear anything else. There's a strange whooshing noise in my head. My vision seems to be affected too since the edges of everything start to get a hazy dark red look to them and then the outer lines of my sight start to rapidly fade to black leaving me with only this small tunnel of vision bound by a long black tunnel.


"Kinney?"


"Brian? Brian, are you okay? Doctor . . . "


"Nurse, get a stretcher. . . "


Then the black tunnel closes down completely and there's only soft, all-encompassing, velvet darkness.


<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<11>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


*Beep, beep, beep, beep, beep*


I'm not making any effort to turn off the fucking alarm this morning. All I want to do is lie here without opening my eyes and hold onto the warm yielding body in bed next to me. I'm ninety percent certain that when I do open my eyes, I'll see my Sunshine back in one piece, without scars or bruises or any other damage to his perfect body other than the few little love bites I gave him the previous night. But, I'm having just a little difficulty getting the images of an unconscious bruised and beaten young man out of my head and I'm really not that eager to open my eyes just in case I'm wrong about what I'll find.


Justin himself eventually wriggles out of my hold and rolls back to switch off the annoying alarm.  Then he squirms back to me and I can feel him laying his head on my shoulder with his hand snaking over to lie across my chest. I revel in the clean warm scent of my sweet blond and the feel of his body stretched alongside mine. He seems okay from what I can tell solely from touching him and listening to his even, deep breathing, so I'm starting to relax and let myself believe he'll be alright when I do finally look at him.


I've already made the mistake once of being overly enthusiastic at his mere presence, so I try to tell myself that when I do open my eyes I shouldn't let my relief at having him back in a healthy, whole state show too much. Fuck, it's going to be hard, though. I don't think I can bear going through this again and again knowing that no matter what I do I can't keep him safe. I'm seriously thinking about the idea of holding him hostage again just so I could be sure he'd never be allowed outside where he could be hurt again.


"Brian? Don't you have to get up and head to work," I hear Justin asking after about fifteen minutes of my continued refusal to acknowledge the world outside my bed.


"Don't want to get up. Don't want to let you out of bed," I grudgingly admit, my eyes still screwed tightly shut against reality, the combination of which causes Justin to giggle.


And, hearing that soft laugh, I can no longer resist. I have to open my eyes to look at him. I'm happy to report that all I see is a happy Sunshine, his eyes sparking blue glints of humor at me. I run my hand through his hair and smile at the lack of scar on his temple. Then I lift the sheets enough to peek down at his chest and I'm further relieved to see only smooth creamy skin without a single bruise.


"Good morning, sweet Sunshine," I breathe into his ear as I snuggle against him even closer, the pet name along with the little kisses I leave there eliciting another tiny chuckle.


"Fuck work!" I tell him right away. "I'm not letting you out of this bed, Sunshine."


I immediately pull the covers over both our heads as I start to kiss my way down his supple, eager body. He's so easily distracted, my good little sex fiend. Now, don't we have a post-reset sex marathon to get to?


I'll figure out how to keep him safe and how to fix this new problem permutation after I've fucked Justin senseless.


End Notes:

Do I hear a few 'poor Justin's out there? Come on. You know you want to say it. How about a few Boo's and Hiss' for evil Chris Hobbs? Now, don't you feel better after letting that all out?  I know I do. So, now that Brian thinks he's got Craig figured out, how do you think he'll take care of the Hobbs problem? He could always try murder again, although that didn't really work out the last time he tried it? He he he. You'll all just have to keep reading to find out. I'm off to go take my Genetics and Evolution midterm and then I'll start writing the next chapter.  Ta ta till then! TAG


Chapter 18 - The Hobbs Variable by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

Brian's giving it ANOTHER try - this time he's convinced that he needs to deal with Hobbs first. His creative solution might just come back to bite him in the a** though. I kind of struggled with this chapter - it just didn't seem to flow the way I'd like, but at least it's written and we're moving on. I did enjoy the way the bathroom scene turned out though - you'll see.  I hope you don't all hate it. Thanks for reading! Enjoy! TAG

 

Chapter 18 - The Hobbs Variable.

 

'It's like 4D calculus,' I keep thinking, 'there are just too many variables. The only way to solve this problem is to somehow get rid of at least one of the variables.'

 

I'd been thinking about the same thing for days now. Ever since the last reset I'd been trying to figure out how I'd gone wrong. I mean, I pretty much know what Justin wants - lots of sex, just enough romance to keep him happy and not too much doting or coddling. I could handle the family by easing Justin into the mix slowly. I thought I'd even managed to figure out how to keep Craig under control, knowing that all it took was patience. But even then, I hadn't yet managed to keep Justin safe. The variable I hadn't taken into account this time was Chris Hobbs.

 

Fucking Chris Hobbs. What the hell was the prick's problem? The first time around, he'd claimed to be incensed by me dancing with Justin at the prom. I always thought it had more to do with the hand job Justin gave him and with his subsequent outing when he and his friends had visited Liberty Avenue. But, even when he didn't have any of those justifications, he still kept coming after my man.

 

This last go round, Justin hadn't gotten around to the hand job or the outing, let alone the Prom. And, if anything, Hobbs had been worse this time than before. His bullying had been more insistent and started sooner. I have a tough time reading the guy because I can't really get around how much I hate him. But, the few times I've seen Hobbs when he wasn't trying to bash Justin - like that time at Craig's funeral - I always did get this closeted gay vibe off him. So, is that the real problem? Is Hobbs really a total homophobe or is he just jealous? And, can I use that insight to take Hobbs out of the equation this time?

 

"A penny for your thoughts, Mr. Kinney," a sultry tenor voice whispers into my ear as I finally snap out of my revery and notice the hot young blond intern who's come into my office carrying some boards for my review.

 

"I don't believe my thoughts are worth even that much, Sunshine," I answer him, sliding my chair away from the desk, grabbing his wrist and pulling him down onto my lap, all in one swift motion. "But now that you're here, all the sudden my brain is filled with much more interesting thoughts".

 

"Such as . . . ?" Justin prods.

 

"Such as, wondering how hard I can get you just by kissing you without even touching your crotch?" I offer, kissing down the side of his sensitive neck as he arches back to give me full access. "And, how you're going to be squirming the rest of the afternoon, trying to hide that hard on from all your co-workers. How you'll be dripping in your pants, thinking about me and how much you want my hot, hard cock up your tight little ass. But, since you made me swear that there'd be no hanky-panky in the office while you were working as my intern, I guess that there's nothing that can be done about this little problem, Sunshine."

 

I end my teasing with a hard little bite just below the collar of his shirt where nobody will see it. He moans so erotically at that point, wiggling his ass against my groin at the same time, that I almost cum in my pants right then and there. Justin never does play fair, the little brat.

 

"It's no problem, Brian," he teases back, grabbing my hand and bringing it down to rub against the fabric covering his swollen cock. "I'll just take care of this not so little problem in the washroom before I head back to the Art Department. You can even watch if you like."

 

Fuck, this boy is so enticing. He's grinning at me mischievously as he saunters away from my desk towards the door, presumably heading towards the men's room a few doors away. He's like a drug that I just can't seem to get enough of and I desperately need another fix right now. Why did I agree that I wouldn't fuck him at work? I guess I'll take what I can get though, since I simply can't resist.

 

I jump up out of my desk chair and obediently follow that swaying ass down the hall, into the men's room and then lean back against the door to ensure our privacy as Justin proceeds to undo his fly and pull out that delectable, thick cock of his. I'm mesmerized at the sight. He's leaning against the edge of the bathroom counter and stroking himself slowly while he watches me watching him. When his tongue peeks out and runs across his bottom lip suggestively I hear myself whimper like a baby.

 

With his other hand, Justin reaches down and cups his balls, never breaking the steady rhythm with which he's caressing himself. Never breaking eye contact. I'm not even sure how it happens, but the next thing I know, my pants are sagging below my ass and I'm standing there with my own dick in my hand, my rhythm matching Justin's as I stroke myself too. The little twat is relishing this now and he's thrilled at how totally in control he is at the moment. His smile just turns up a few degrees brighter and then he starts sucking on two of his fingers.

 

My breathing is already ragged, but then I watch as he takes those two dripping wet fingers and snakes his hand up under his shirt to play with his nipples, and I hear myself panting. My own hand follows suit. I mimic his motions, my nipples already hard little nubs and oh so sensative. I'm watching as he pinches and rolls one of his and then he moans so loudly it makes my dick jump at least an inch out of my hand. That stimulates him in turn so that several beads of precum start to leak out the wide slit at the head of his cock and I growl as he swipes his thumb through the liquid and then starts to pump his fist even faster along that solid rod.

 

Even from across the room I can tell how close he's getting. His skin is flushed that delicious pink color he turns when he's aroused and he throws back his head with a throaty groan as he speeds up our mutual pace. I can't take my eyes off the beautiful, lustfilled blond vision in front of me. He's thrusting wantonly into his fist now, little happy mewling noises pouring out of those cotton candy pink lips that I'm longing to nibble. Then I watch as he momentarily stills, before I hear an 'Ahhhh' and see pulses of thick creamy cum arc towards me, landing on the floor tiles between us. The smell of sex and the sight of Justin's glowing ecstatic face are all I need to bring me to my own climax.

 

Justin beams at me, watching as I shoot and licking his lips with a self satisfied glint in his eyes. He doesn't say anything as he tucks himself back into his slacks and turns to wash his hands. I can only slump against the door, trying to catch my breath while I admire the impish grin on my blond's face in the mirror.

 

"Mr. Kinney," he says in a low sexy voice as he steps past me, winking when I move so he can pull open the door.

 

"Taylor," I respond as he walks past me, bumping his shoulder against mine.

 

Fuck, he's gorgeous and sexy and has a great sense of humor and . . . I'm still going over Justin's attributes in my head as I finally fold my dick back into my pants and move to the basin to wash up. Fuck, I love that man. Can you believe that even after all this time he can still get me so turned on that I'll jerk myself off in the men's room at work and still somehow feel like its one of the best orgasms I've ever had. That boy is fucking dangerous. And amazing.

 

It's only when I go to dry my hands that I hear movement coming from the farthest stall and realize that I'm not alone in here like I thought. I listen for a moment to the grunts and other straining noises before I realize just exactly what my little peeping tom is up to. Then I quietly pad over to the stall and gently push open the unlatched door just as Scott, one of the junior ad execs, takes a final stroke at his pulsing dick and shoots his own load into his hand.

 

"Scott," I say with a knowing smile as he looks up at me, embarrassed as all hell.

 

"Um. Hey, Brian," he manages as he hastily wipes his hands off with some toilet paper, avoiding direct eye contact.

 

"I thought you were straight, Scott," I comment, rolling my lips in to try and contain the shit eating grin that's aching to break out on my face at the knowledge that even this homophobic prick can't resist my boy's charms.

 

"I am!" Scott insists as he rudely brushes past me and practically runs out the door.

 

"Yeah. Right. You keep telling yourself that, buddy," I throw out at his retreating back.

 

I shake my head as I stroll back to my office, unable to believe that Scott Hamilton, the one coworker who'd had the guts to make a derogatory comment about my sexuality, was caught red handed getting his jollies off to the sight of a couple gay boys masturbating. Leave it to Justin to turn out even the straightest of straight guys. At least I won't have to listen to any more snarky comments from Scott after this. Next time he tries I'll simply remind him about our little bathroom encounter. I just have to remember to do it in a way that won't antagonize him too much - I don't need another Chris Hobbs situation on my hands right now.

 

That starts me thinking about our boy Hobbs again. Considering how much of an impact Justin had on Scott, I have a new appreciation for what might be going on in Hobbs' head. If Hobbs is the closet case I take him for, I can only imagine how hot and bothered he'd get over my sexy blond bombshell. The question is, how can I use this knowledge to protect Justin.

 

It seems like trying to keep Justin away from Hobbs actually did more harm than good. Maybe that afternoon hand job created just enough of a connection between Justin and Hobbs that the jock actually restrained himself for a little while at least. That would explain why the bullying had started so much sooner this last time when Hobbs didn't get his hand job. So, is the answer to encourage contact between my blond and the homophobic jock rather than to try to keep them apart?

 

Fuck that! No way can I stomach the idea of my Sunshine anywhere near that monster. I'd end up killing the asshole for sure if that were to happen and I've already determined not to try killing Hobbs or even trying to physically hurt him. My experience with taking out Craig has proven that killing someone isn't likely to solve my problems or fix things so that I can finally stop this time warping shit. So what are my other options?

 

Besides, there's really no reason to try to befriend him - the only reason I've settled on that course with Craig is because he's Justin's father and I know how much having his father remain part of his life means to him. I have no such concern with Hobbs. What I really want to do is just get Hobbs' attention directed somewhere other than Justin. It doesn't seem right to just redirect it to some other kid that he'll end up bullying. But, if not that, then what?

 

I'm distracted from my search to come up with a distraction for Hobbs, though, when Sunshine texts me that its now after 6:00 and he's hungry. I know where my priorities lie - first, feeding the boy and then, taking him to the loft for a few hours of fucking before I have to return him to suburbia. Hobbs and his closeted hang ups will have to wait.

 

As we stroll into the Diner, I notice that Michael and the rest of the gang are, unfortunately, already seated in the farthest booth. Well, whether I like it or not, I guess it's time to start on the 'easing Justin into the family' part of my plan. With my hand resting reassuringly at the small of Justin's back, I resolutely guide him towards the booth and slide in after him before Michael even looks up from the comic he's reading.

 

I've long since mastered the technique of getting Justin introduced to the family. Before you know it, Deb has officially bestowed the 'Sunshine' nickname on her newest 'boy', Mikey has been warned not to call him a trick, Emmett has been told to keep his hands off my blond and we've all moved on to the more important task of eating dinner. I'm busy fondling Justin's thigh and sundry other parts under the table as he finishes off a huge serving of apple pie a la mode, when the bell over the door dings, ushering in a noisy group of younger guys.

 

"Boys, boys! Quiet down, now. This is a diner not a fucking playground," Deb admonishes as she shoos the group into the large front booth.

 

The boys pour into the booth like a litter of eager puppies tumbling over each other. In the middle of the group I happen to spy a familiar, if unwelcome, face - Cody Bell, future ringleader of the Pink Posse. I unconsciously find myself pulling Justin closer to protect him from this part of his possible future that was/will be so painful. But my Sunshine, thankfully, isn't yet full of the hatred that might drive him to hang out with that angry and violent group, and he just looks up at me with his adoring crystal blue eyes and smiles while he scarfs down his last bite of pie.

 

Fucking Chris Hobbs! Cody and the Pink Posse are just another legacy of the bashing that Justin has to look forward to if I don't find a way to stop Hobbs. I can already hear Cody spouting some hate filled rhetoric even from his far off booth. He's probably the only person I've met who's more violent than Hobbs himself.

 

That thought hits me, immediately. I may have just come up with a possible solution to my Hobbs dilemma. Cody is dying for a target for his anger and Hobbs needs someone other than Justin to focus his own closeted frustrations on. It seems like a match made in heaven to me. Now, I just need to find a way to bring these two lovebirds together.

 

As Justin and I head towards the Diner's door I hear Cody's voice loudly proclaim, "It's time to kick some straight ass. We need to act before they get the chance."

 

It's the vigilante's call to action and it galvanizes my decision too. I hand my keys to Justin, kiss him lightly on the cheek and tell him to bring the Jeep around while I take care of something. He bounces happily out of the door, excited by the mere prospect of driving my car for the first time. I saunter over to the large front booth and wait until its occupants notice my presence and quickly fall silent.

 

"You ready to practice what you preach?" I ask, staring into Bell's surprised eyes.

 

"Fuck, yeah!" Bell exclaims, pounding his right fist on the Formica table top in his enthusiasm. "I wouldn't say it if I didn't mean it. But, what's it to you? You got a problem with queers sticking up for themselves or something?"

 

"No. But I do have a problem with a homophobic jock who has been bullying a friend of mine," I reply calmly. "He's got a violent streak and I can guarantee that if he keeps on the way he is, he's gonna hurt someone someday. I don't want that to be my friend. So, if you're serious about this 'taking action' shit, this is the guy you should be looking at. He could definitely use a bit of a warning that he's not the only badass out there. Interested?"

 

"Hell yes! Just tell us where to find the prick and we'll show him exactly what happens when the fags strike back," Bell enthuses, buoyed by the sycophantic encouragement of his entourage.

 

"The guy's name is Chris Hobbs. He plays football for St. James Academy," is all I have to say before they launch into making plans that I don't want to know about, and I quickly leave.

 

After that I kind of forget about Cody Bell, Chris Hobbs and the rest of it for a while. Everything seems to be going so well for Justin and me right at the moment. Okay, admittedly I've backed off trying to get him to come out to his parents for now and we're still sort of sneaking around, but as long as I'm getting my regular dose of Sunshine I can't complain too much. Would I like to have him in my bed every night? Fuck, yes. But, I guess I can deal with sharing him with his parents a few nights a week, too, if that's what it takes to fix this weird ass situation.

 

Then, the last week of October, I'm forced to start thinking about it again by a random comment Justin makes as we're leaving work one night on our way to Woody's for a drink and some pool with the guys. We've just gotten into the Jeep when Justin tells me he can't come over tomorrow night for our usual Friday night pot, pizza and porn fest. I'm not too upset by this - he IS allowed an occasional night off from hanging out with me, even though I'd love to keep him to myself forever, although I'd never tell him that for fear of scaring him off.

 

"You're standing me up, Sunshine? Leaving me to get stoned and beat off all alone? Whoever you're standing me up for better have a damn big cock or you'll be sorry that you skipped out on me."

 

"I'm not standing you up for a guy - besides it wouldn't matter how big his cock was, your's is perfect so I don't need to be out looking for more. It's just that Daphne's making me go with her to the fucking Homecoming game tomorrow. She has this crush on some new guy and needs me to play wingman for her or something. Unfortunately, he’s a football player which means I’ll have to hang out with the jocks all night and you just know that’s going to be sooooooo much fun. But, it’s Daph, so I’ll do it even though I’ll be fucking bored out of my mind. Anyway, blame her for having to beat off alone, not me," Justin complains, pouting at the thought of missing out on four of his favorite addictions, food, pot, porn and me.

 

“You keep away from the jocks,” I try to warn him, failing in my attempt not to sound like an overprotective parent. “They’re all a bunch of homophobic pricks and bullies.”

 

“It’s so sweet that you care,” he teases with that annoyingly impish grin as I try to swat at his perky little ass when he scoots out of the car and runs off towards the front door of Woody’s.

 

“Brat!” I yell after his retreating form, following nonetheless so that I can enjoy what time I do have with my blond, but worried too over the idea of letting Justin voluntarily spend time with the very group of jocks that are likely to start harassing him.

 

All day on Friday I have this annoying feeling that something's wrong. You know that little voice in the back of your mind that keeps whispering that you forgot something or you need to be somewhere you're not. I keep picking up my phone and looking at it like maybe I'd missed an important call but there's never anything on the display and the fucking thing doesn't ring once all afternoon. Out of sheer annoyance I pick it up and call Mikey at about 4:00 pm just to make sure the damn thing is working. Michael's whiny nasal voice answering on the other end of the call, proving that my phone does work after all, does nothing to relax my nerves though

 

One thing calling Mikey does is earn me an invite to meet up with him and Dr. Dave at Woody's after work. Since Justin's abandoned me for the evening I figure I might as well go even though it means I'll have to make nice with Dr. Dreary. I briefly contemplate going out and trying to find Ben. I wonder if I invite him along to the bar tonight, will it hurry things along so that my best friend will dump Dr. Dolt sooner rather than later? But, I won't do it - with my luck I'd probably just screw up Mikey's life, too. So, I simply grin and bear it through several rounds of drinks with the Doc, although that does little to distract me from the uneasy feeling I've still got.

 

It's not even 9:00 pm when Dr. Dull announces he's got an early appointment in the morning and he drags a grinning Michael off to his boring lair with him. It's too early to hit any of the clubs so I'm just wandering around Liberty Avenue, smoking and trying to come up with a way to entertain myself, when I see a carload of loudmouthed boys driving by and guess who's hanging out the front passenger side window - dear old Cody Bell.

 

The car stops at a light a half block away and Cody leans out the window, whooping like a hyena, and pounding his fists against the vehicle's roof. Then another car full of equally rowdy teens pulls up next to that first one and the entire vicinity is treated to a round of boisterous high fives and fist bumps as the two groups noisily greet each other. Fucking, overly enthusiastic teenagers!

 

"Hey, Trey! You guys up for some fun tonight?" I can't help hearing Cody yell to one of the new arrivals, his voice clearly audible even over the noise of the traffic. "We're heading out to the burbs to find us some straight jock ass that's just asking for a whooping. You guys wanna join us? The more the merrier."

 

"You still on that kick about the 'Gay Community Bashing Back'?" the second boy asks.

 

"Hell, yes!" Cody hollers, reaching inside and pulling out a Louisville Slugger bat which he brandishes in front of him. "Let's see how the fucking jocks like being on the receiving end for a change!"

 

"Right on, dude!" some random voice from inside the second car replies, the sentiment accompanied by a cacophonous series of hooting and cheering in support of the idea.

 

"Cool! Just follow us. We're going to bust up some lame ass Homecoming party out at St. James' Academy. There should be plenty of straight jocks available for ass kicking," Bell directs, sliding back into his seat as the light changes to green and the caravan of angry youth drives away.

 

"Fuck!" I toss my cigarette into the gutter and start to jog back towards where I parked the Jeep. When I'd made the suggestion that Bell pay Hobbs a visit, I never thought he'd bring a fucking army with him or that he'd plan on busting up the school's Homecoming game - a course of action which seemed likely to start a fucking riot. Yeah, now I remember that I always did think he was an idiot. Why the fuck did I think it was a good idea to get Bell and his violent femme cronies involved in this?

 

And the worst part of the whole plan, at least from my perspective, was that all this shit was coming down around my Sunshine's unsuspecting ears. I did NOT want Justin to be involved in any of this. Remind me to kill Daphne tomorrow - why'd she have to choose tonight to suddenly decide she's got the hots for a football player? And, even if she did, why's she dragging my blond with her into this mess.

 

I'm in the Jeep and already trying to weave through traffic on my way to stop a second Stonewall Riot from erupting at the St. James' Homecoming game.

 

 

End Notes:

 

I know - another cliff hanger! Please don't hate me and come after me with a baseball bat. I'll try to get the resolution chapter up asap. Writing has been difficult for me lately as I'm working full time and taking 12 credits at school as well. But, I have my trusty iPhone and type away whenever I get a moment. I really miss the halcion days of summer back before I got a job. I used to sit and write for 10 or 12 hours at a stretch. Those were the days. But, since it's getting to be winter here, I guess having a job and therefore the ability to pay for heating will be appreciated so I kinda have to work. Alas, poor readers, you'll just have to wait a bit between chapters for the time being. Sorry. TAG

 

 

Chapter 19 - The Reverse Bashing by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

Look what happens when you put Cody Bell and Chris Hobbs together. It's really not good. Brian really, really goofed this time. But, maybe it will be the catalyst that makes him step back and take a good hard look at what the f**k he's doing. You'll just have to read and see if it works.  Enjoy! TAG

 

Chapter 19 - The Reverse Bashing.

 

I arrive at the field behind Justin’s school and dash frantically out of the Jeep. Everything looks suspiciously calm. There’s no sign of Cody Bell’s posse and no one appears to be rioting, yet. The scoreboard shows that there’s only about two minutes left in the game. The home team is ahead by seven points. The fans seem happy - they’re cheering away under the direction of the cheerleading squad and the band. There are a lot of people here and no one seems to notice me but that also means that it’s going to be almost impossible for me to locate either Justin or Cody. All I know is that the uneasy feeling I’ve had all day is stronger than ever and all I want to do is get Justin and get out of here before Bell and his buddies do anything.

 

I start to wend my way through the cheering, excited throngs of people, heading towards the bleachers. There are lots of adults - both family and alumni - here tonight, so at least I don’t feel completely out of place in coming to a high school football game. I’m still not really comfortable in this environment though. Yeah, I was good at sports when I was a kid, but that didn’t mean I was the type that got into all this booster shit. Plus, I did soccer and track, NOT football. Football jocks have to be the stupidest and most bigoted of all. Just being in this breeder-filled scene is making my skin crawl.

 

That’s probably why I jump about a foot when I feel a hand sliding up under my leather jacket from behind as I stand next to the wall near the end of the first set of bleachers. I think I might have actually squeaked a little even. The warm hand and the arm it's attached to quickly snake around my middle and wrap itself around me, adding to my discomfort until I hear the low tenor whisper that accompanied the embrace.

 

“Couldn’t bear even one night without me?” Justin says, laughter in his quiet tone. “Or maybe you just needed help in beating off?”

 

“Shit! You brat. You scared the shit out of me. I thought some breeder was feeling me up,” I say as I turn back to face him, wanting nothing more than to pull him into my arms right there and then.

 

Justin giggles and the sound goes straight to my already hard dick. “So, you came HERE to get some action? I think you’re losing your touch, Stud.”

 

“It just so happens that I’m a HUGE fan of high school football. If you want a personal demonstration of just how really, really huge, that could be arranged if you just follow me to the closest men’s room,” I explain and I palm my cock through my pants and watch as his eyes get darker with lust and his pert little pink tongue darts out to wet his luscious full lips.

 

"Fuck, you don't know how good that sounds. I can't bear the thought of going back over to join Daphne and her new love interest," Justin says, inching closer to me so he can surreptitiously hook his right index finger into the waistband of my jeans. "They are all too stupid for words."

 

"Is that why you're lurking around under the bleachers, Sunshine?"

 

"Guilty as charged. I just couldn't sit there and listen to that bunch of morons any more. Daphne's all goo-goo eyed over Jacob Winters but I swear I can't figure out what she sees in him. Before the game started, he was telling this tedious hetero sex joke and when I commented that it was completely inane - get this - he got all proud-like and thanked me."

 

"So, then you won't mind if I drag you away to my lair and fuck away all memory of this horrible night," I say as I start to walk backwards, towing him after me.

 

"Daphne will kill me if I abandon her," he says, but he's not putting up any struggle as I keep pulling him farther from the noisy stands.

 

"She'll forgive you, eventually," I counsel, taking another two steps backwards.

 

Just then the final game buzzer sounds and the crowd around us erupts with shouts, hoots and cheering of all descriptions. Hordes of people rush past us, conveniently knocking Justin into my arms. I take advantage of the circumstances to steal a quick kiss. Before I know it, though, we're surrounded by a mass of bouncing, scantily clad cheerleaders and football groupies, followed immediately thereafter by most of the team as they head towards the locker room. All I can do is press myself and Justin back against the wall as the whole moiling bunch surges past.

 

At the tail end of the crowd I see Daphne hanging on the arm of some beefy looking jock with long blond hair and a scraggly beard, a goofy look on her normally attractive face. As the football team filters into the locker room, their groupies fall away to mingle in small cliques. Daphne finally notices Justin and skips over to where we're standing.

 

"Hey, Jus. Hey, Mr. Gorgeous," Daphne says as she gives me a good once over, showing obvious interest in what she sees.

 

"Pop your eyes back in your skull, Daph," Justin takes instant exception to his best friend's actions. Then he adds, with equally obvious pride and excitement, "this is Brian."

 

"You're THE Brian? Oh my god. What's he doing here, Jus?" Daphne gushes as we're introduced for about the tenth time and I note with satisfaction that she's still just as gaga about me at every introduction.

 

"I came to rescue him from the drudgery of babysitting you and your new beau all night," I pipe up instantly. "Now, be a good friend and tell him you won't hate him forever if he leaves with me rather than sticking around as the third wheel with you and your jock. Trust me, he'll have a lot more fun getting fucked into the mattress all night by me than he would hanging out here with you and Clay Matthews, Jr."

 

I love the way Justin's cheeks turn that lovely rosy hue when he's embarrassed. That's why it's so tempting to tease him the way I do. Shit, I wish we weren't smack dab in the middle of breederville so I could kiss away that blush. It's so distracting that I don't actually hear most of the ensuing conversation until Justin says my name for at least the third time.

 

"What was that, Sunshine?" I ask when I finally realize he's trying to get my attention.

 

"I said, is it ok if we stick around until Jacob gets back?" Justin repeats. "He drove us all tonight and I need to get into his truck to get my backpack before we leave. I've got a ton of calculus homework and I want to get started on it first thing in the morning. I don't want to have to spend all day tomorrow tracking him down to get my stuff back."

 

I'm ready to suggest that Daphne get it for him and we'll pick it up from her in the morning, since I really want to get out of here as soon as possible. But, before I can say anything, the locker room door opens and the first couple of team members, now showered and changed, start to trickle out. I figure if they're already done, then we can probably wait a couple of minutes. There's still a ton of people around and I don't think Cody will start something quite yet.

 

But, almost fifteen minutes later, this Jacob still hasn't emerged from the locker room. What the fuck is taking this kid so long, I wonder? By now the crowds have thinned considerably and I'm definitely starting to get nervous. Not only am I worried about Bell and his crew showing up and causing trouble, but now I'm also starting to feel self conscious and out of place since I'm the only adult over twenty-five still hanging around here. My goal is NOT to either out Justin by my presence or to get labeled as some kind of pervert who haunts the high school boys' locker room. It's definitely time to get out of here, regardless of whether or not Jacob is done primping.

 

That's when I hear a commotion starting up inside the locker rooms. First there's just a lot of yelling. Then I hear the sound of something metal crashing to the floor. And, finally, the door beside us flies open and several panicky teens come barreling out, shouting for help.

 

"What the fuck?" Justin shouts as he pulls away from where he was lounging against the wall next to me and starts to head into the room to see what's going on.

 

"Justin, no," I exclaim, deftly grabbing his wrist and holding him back.

 

Justin looks over at me and I can see in his eyes that he plans to argue. He wants to go in there and help. It's his fucking nature. I know that, but I'm not going to let him get anywhere near what I'm reasonably sure I already know is happening inside the locker room.

 

We never get around to the discussion though, because unfortunately the fight comes to us. The door opens a second time and I see four football players, still only half dressed, backing out of the doorway, followed by a larger group of noisy teens, some carrying baseball bats, and all yelling like banshees. One of the retreating kids is the beefy looking guy Daphne had been talking to earlier and another is the star quarterback - Chris Hobbs. All four back right up to the area of the wall where Daphne, Justin and I just happen to be standing.

 

At the forefront of the group of aggressors, his Louisville Slugger held high, is Cody Bell. The rest of the rowdy vigilantes follow closely behind Bell, feeding off the palpable feelings of anger, animosity and rage that pulse around the group and which seem to originate with Bell. The frightened screams of the bystanders and the tangible fear radiating off the now cornered jocks seem to add to Bell's unthinking rage.

 

"Which one of you pussy boys is Hobbs?" Cody drawls out, exaggerating his southern accent. "We heard that you guys got you a closet fag up here by the name of Chris Hobbs who's too chicken shit to admit he's gay and instead spends his time bullying kids he'd really rather be fucking. So, we just came by to help you out of the closet, buddy. Now tell me, which one of you losers is Hobbs?"

 

Bell and his crew have now circled around the group of jocks. Justin, Daphne and I have been shoved as a group backwards into the corner where the locker room wall meets the gym. While we're not exactly the center of the drama going on in front of us, we're much too close for my comfort, but we can’t get away either. All I can do is try to push the two teens back behind me further to shield them with my body, but they don't seem to want to stay there.

 

"I ain't no fag," Hobbs foolishly steps forward and asserts his innocence, which, exactly as planned, provides Bell with his primary target.

 

"Oh no? A pretty boy like you would be quite the hit down on Liberty Avenue," Bell teases as he reaches with his free hand to trail his fingertips down the side of Hobbs' face, ending up with his hand cupping under Hobbs' chin. "Come on, lover boy. Give me a kiss and prove to me and my buddies that you're a lover not a fighter."

 

"Fuck you, faggot," Chris spits into Bell's face as he pushes the slightly smaller boy away.

 

"And here I was hoping we could be boyfriends," Cody sneers as he wipes the spittle off his face. "Guess you'd rather get your ass kicked? Well, I'll be happy to oblige."

 

"Cody, man, we gotta book. The coach and a couple of security fucks are headed this way," a butch looking young woman yells as she comes running up to the group.

 

"Well, lover, looks like the foreplay is over," Cody says as he hefts his bat higher and cocks his arm back ready for a swing.

 

Everything that happens next is pretty much unadulterated chaos. Before Bell can actually swing, Hobbs lowers his head like a bull and charges towards his attacker. Bell's cronies try to hold Hobbs still but immediately find themselves fighting off the rest of the football team guys who have suddenly come back to life. More and more gawking bystanders are running up, curious about all the commotion, half of whom end up part of the fight, too. And meanwhile, the whole roiling mass, fists and weapons flying, keeps edging closer and closer to where I'm standing trying to protect Justin and Daphne.

 

Next thing I know, Daph's Beefy Boy starts to go down with one of Bell's guys maintaining a chokehold from behind and another slugging him in the gut. Daphne lets out a screech and darts around me to run to her man's assistance. Justin, of course, follows after her, moving quicker than I can grab him. All I can do is run after them, wading through the piles of wrestling bodies on the ground and avoiding the randomly thrown punches going every which way.

 

At the center of the melee are Bell and Hobbs, still standing and trading punches. Somehow Bell has managed to hold on to his bat in his left hand, but he's too near to Hobbs now to make much use of it. Hobbs, for all his macho bravado, seems to be a pretty piss poor fighter, all things considered - he keeps throwing these wild and totally ineffective punches and seems incapable of blocking Cody's much better targeted jabs.

 

By this time, Beefy Boy and his assailants have struggled their way closer to where Bell and Hobbs are and I glimpse Daphne's curly brown head bobbing through that part of the crowd too. I've lost track of Justin for the moment, but it's a good bet he's not far behind his friend so I head in that direction as well. I can hear authoritarian voices yelling somewhere near the edge of the brawl, probably the security guards and coaches trying to break up the fight, but I know it'll take them a while to get to where we are.

 

I'm only three strides away from the group when I finally see Justin's blond mop pop up through the mess. He rushes to help Daphne, who's trying to pull down the guy choking Beefy Boy. As they struggle with the human limpet clinging to Beefy Boy's back, Justin ends up back-to-back with Chris Hobbs, who is still trading blows with Bell.

 

That's when it all crumbles to shit. Bell all the sudden notes he's once again got maneuvering room at his back and he takes a step backward so that he's now got room to swing that bat he's been holding. I watch with a horrifying sense of déjà vu as Bell cocks the bat high over his right shoulder and starts to swing just as Hobbs ducks. Justin, who's standing right behind Hobbs, has no idea what's coming. He must sense Hobbs' movement, though, and I see him slightly turn his head to the right just as the bat reaches the apogee of its arc., in effect placing his head directly into the path of the rapidly descending weapon.

 

"Justin!" I scream as I dive towards Bell in desperation.

 

Once again I hear the sickening sound of a bat cracking against bone. I'm too late. AGAIN. I feel a sour ball of bile rising up from my gullet. I don't dare open my eyes. I can't bear seeing Justin once again lying in a pool of blood with his life pulsing out of him. I can't do this again. I just can't.

 

"Brian! God no! No, no, no, no. Brian!" I hear Justin's voice crying and pleading and the pain in his tone is so great that I have to open my eyes to comfort him even though I know it will kill me to see him.

 

When I do open my eyes, though, I think that something isn't right. Instead of looking down at my battered lover, I seem to be looking up at Justin who's hovering above me. He's covered in blood and he's crying, saying my name over and over.

 

"Brian," Justin croons when our eyes meet. "It's gonna be okay. Just hold on. I'm here and you're going to be just fine. Just stay with me, please."

 

I'm a little confused about what's happening but I'm glad to see Justin isn't as badly hurt as he was before. If he's sitting up and talking it must mean that he's alright. But then where is all the blood coming from? I want to get up and see what's going on but for some reason I can't seem to move.

 

"The ambulance is on the way, Justin," Daphne says as her face appears in my line of vision. "Hold on Brian. You're going to be okay. We'll get you to the hospital and they'll fix you right up, okay."

 

Something definitely isn't right here. I try again to get up but I can't feel my legs or my arms. My vision seems to be getting awfully blurry too. All I can see now is Justin, who's leaning over me. He's holding my hand and kissing it but I can't feel it. I hate seeing the tears dripping down his face leaving tracks through the blood on his cheeks. I want to touch him and reassure him that its going to be okay, but my body just doesn't seems to be working right.

 

"Justin," I eventually manage to croak out, although my voice doesn't sound right either. "Sunshine, I love you."

 

I want to say more. I wish I could tell him everything about how I feel and how much I need him in my life and why I'm doing all these crazy assed things. But I don't seem to have the energy. I feel very tired. I can't seem to keep my eyes open anymore even though I don't want to stop looking at my beautiful Sunshine. If only I wasn't so tired.

 

"Brian! Brian, no! Don't leave me, Brian. . . " Justin's sweet sad voice fades away.

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<12>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

"Shit! That goddamned little fucker bashed ME. Shit, shit, shit!" I start yelling as soon as I wake, screeching over the noise of the alarm clock that's blaring from the corner.

 

*Beep, beep, beep, beep*

 

"Fuck, Brian. What the fuck’s the matter," Justin says, bolting up in alarm from his spot next to me in the bed, and looking around him as if to try and locate whatever threat I'm yelling about.

 

"Sorry, Sunshine," I reply, settling back into the pillows as soon as I switch off the alarm. "Guess it was just a nightmare."

 

I quickly pull my snugly, comforting blond back into my arms and curl my body around him. Just having him near me, his touch, his scent, his warmth, is enough to bring my pulse rate back to normal. I sigh as I finally feel the last of the tension seep away and I pull Justin even closer to me. However, as the adrenaline dissipates, all I have left is a sense of utter hopelessness.

 

"I'm so tired of all this, Sunshine," I confess into the soft warm skin at the crook of his neck where I've buried my face. "I just want to stop playing all these games and get back to where we were. I want you here, in my bed, forever, without all the struggle. Why is that too much to ask? How come every time I try to fix things I just seem to mess them up even worse?"

 

I know that Justin has no clue what I'm talking about right now, but he tries his best to comfort me nonetheless. His arm reaches across me and he squeezes me tightly. He's kissing me lightly along the back of my neck and my shoulder. He wiggles his body closer to mine so that I can feel his skin along the entire length of my longer frame. It's almost enough to calm me.

 

I just can't shake my frustration and depression this morning, though. I let Justin go to school rather than keeping him with me today. I'm not likely to be very good company and I don't want to have to struggle to avoid scaring him off with my moods.

 

I blow off work and Mikey, too. I'm not really sure what to do or where to go. I wish I had someone, anyone, I could talk to about this shit. Yeah, yeah, I know it's ironic that Brian Kinney is upset because he wants to talk about his problems and has no one who'll listen. Fuck irony, though - its true. I decide to go for a walk. I hope that the fresh air will clear my head and maybe I'll get some inspiration about how to fix my shithole of a sorta life.

 

Somehow I find myself wandering around near the University District even though I don't remember heading that direction. It seems I've ended up right outside the Carnegie Mellon building where Ben has/will have his office. I wonder if he'll be here today or if that's something that doesn't happen until some time in the future. I'm curious, though, and I've got nothing better to do, so I climb the stairs and enter the liberal arts building, trying to remember how to get to the faculty offices.

 

After wandering around lost for fifteen minutes, a cute young Latino guy takes pity on me and asks if he can help me find something. I ask if he knows Professor Bruckner, and he smiles, saying he'd be happy to show me the way to Ben's office. He leads me to the right place and then, before I can knock on the office door, he leans in and whispers that his name is 'Angel' and says I can call him anytime - the slip of paper he tucks into the waistband of my pants evidence that he's serious. The way he batts his eyelashes at me as he backs away makes me chuckle, and I'm glad the boy's Twinkie antics have at least raised my spirits a little.

 

I'm still chuckling a little when I knock at the office door which is opened almost immediately by a smiling Benjamin Bruckner. We both just stand there staring at each other for a good two minutes. I'm pretty sure he recognizes me but neither of us seems to know what to say. I've forgotten why I thought it would be a good idea to come here.

 

"Brian, right?" Ben finally breaks the ice, politely ignoring exactly how he knows my name. "Is there something I can help you with?"

 

"Um. Yeah, there is," I finally speak up. "You teach philosophy, right? Well, I'm looking for something of a philosophical consultant. Do you have a minute?"

 

<<<<<<>>>>>>>

 

Four hours later, Ben and I are ensconced at the back table of one of the bars near campus, each with a cold beer in hand, the impressive line of dead soldiers we'd already drunk decorating the far edge of the table. Ben had listened to my weird story about my time traveling life with a surprising amount of calm. He didn't once insinuate that I was making it all up or crazy. I don't think he actually believed that what I was saying was really truly happening, but the idea seemed to fascinate him and he was eager to discuss my dilemma from a theoretical standpoint. Which is what we'd been doing, our minds well lubricated with beer as we philosophized together.

 

"It's like your mother always said, watch out what you wish for 'cause it just might come true," Ben says with a rather girly little giggle, making me think it was probably high time to cut him off.

 

"Yeah, but did your mother have any other pity sh-sayings about how to fix the shit once you g-get your stupid wish?" I complain, noticing that I'm slurring my words pretty badly and should probably be cut off as well.

 

"Nope. But, that's your problem right there, Brian," Ben says, sitting up straighter and pushing his glasses back up his nose as if to prepare himself to give an insightful proclamation. "Maybe you're trying too hard to fix everything. See, you can't fix everything. Sometimes you just have to accept the way things are and then adapt."

 

"There's an ancient Japanese proverb that says, 'the bamboo that bends in the wind is stronger than the oak which breaks'. I think what that means is that you shouldn't try to fight life head on all the time. Sometimes you only need to stand your ground and let life flow around you. You can't make everything in life go the way you want all the time. But, if you're strong enough to bear it, you can wait out the trying times, survive, and then move on afterwards."

 

"But I can't just move on without Him, Ben," I explain. "There's no point without him."

 

"I'm not saying you should," Ben argues adamantly. "What I AM saying is that maybe you shouldn't be trying to go back and fix everything that happened from day one of your relationship. Maybe you could accept things the way they are and just move on. I guess what I mean is that, all the shit that happened to get you to the point where you were when you first started wishing to go back - the good stuff and the bad stuff - that was what made your relationship what it was. If you change it, you change the relationship itself and maybe not for the better."

 

"But I fucked up all the time. I made everything so much harder for everyone and I hurt him so much. He almost died because of me, Ben. Now I have this chance to go back and do it right and you're telling me I shouldn't bother?" I'm not sure if I'm angry or sad as I say this, but I'm sure not accepting of this suggestion. "What, should I just sit back and watch him get his skull bashed in again and do nothing? Fuck that!"

 

“Let me ask you this, Brian. What was the effect of the bashing on your relationship with Justin?” Ben interrupts before I can really start raving and bangs off on this seemingly random tangent.

 

“Huh? Justin getting bashed sucked. That was the effect.”

 

“Yes, but what happened afterwards? I think you said that Justin came to live with you after that?”

 

“Yeah. At first his mother tried to keep us apart since she blamed it all on me. But, after a few weeks, she came to me and said that Justin wasn’t doing well and she asked me to see if I could help him since I was the one he wanted to be with and trusted, not her. That’s when Justin moved into my place the second time.” I explain, still unsure where Ben is going with all this.

 

“And did you help him?”

 

“Yeah. I mean, Justin did most of the work, but I was there for him and I helped him as best as I could. At first he didn’t even want me to touch him but we worked through all that. And it took him a long time to get used to being in public places, so I used to walk with him places and stay with him until he felt comfortable. Then there were the nightmares that I helped him through,” I say, thinking back to all the things we did during that time to get Justin back so he could function again normally. “He almost dropped out of school because it was so hard for him to draw with his hand the way it was back then, but I got him this cool computer that he could use to augment his drawing and he talked the dean into letting him use it in school. So, yeah, I guess I did help him a lot to get through all that.”

 

“So, what I hear you saying is that you and Justin worked together after the bashing to help him recover. And how did that affect your relationship. Didn’t it make it stronger?”

 

“I don’t know. I guess so, at least up until he left me for the fucking fiddler,” I admit, grudgingly.

 

“That’s another issue. But, what I’m getting at here is that because of the bashing, you, Brian, learned you could take care of another person. You’d never done that before, had you? But you did it this time and from what you’ve told me it sounds like you succeeded pretty well. Plus, you two both grew closer and came to understand each other better during that time, right?” Ben persists. “So, all these things are are good effects that came about as a direct result of the bashing. Without having gone through the bashing, you might not have ever learned these things about yourself and your relationship might not have been as strong in the end.”

 

“Don’t you see? Even the bad things that happened to you, helped to make your relationship with Justin what it ended up being. It’s why you care so much now that you’re willing to do whatever it takes to get back to where you were. But,if you hadn’t had those experiences - learning to take care of him, learning to work things out together or how to be patient while he worked things out on his own - you two never would have gotten to the place in your relationship where you are today.”

 

“I’m not saying that if I saw my boyfriend about to get his head slammed by a bat that I wouldn’t do anything to stop it. But, on the other hand, after it had happened, if I had the chance to go back and fix things so that the bashing never occurred, I don’t know if I’d do that either. Yeah, you could save Justin from the physical pain he suffered but you’d also be depriving yourself and him of all the benefits you got from what came afterwards when you were working together to take care of each other after the fact. And, if you took away any of those parts of your relationship, like how you learned to cherish and take care of each other even in the worst of times, maybe there wouldn’t even BE a relationship afterwards.”

 

“I must be drunk,” I interject as soon as Ben stops his Zen diatribe long enough to take a breath, “I think you’re starting to make sense. But, what does that mean to me now? What do I do now? I guess I agree with what you’re saying, but that would only help me if I were back in the future before I made the stupid wish that sent me back in time. How do I get back there?”

 

Ben slumps back in his chair, picks up his beer and chugs the remainder. Then he looks thoughtfully at the label on the bottle for several seconds as if he’s contemplating how to answer my question. But, instead of a deep, meaningful and serious expression, he looks back up at me eventually with a big sloppy grin on his face.

 

“I have no fucking idea!” he says and breaks into a riotous loud laugh, slamming his empty beer bottle back on the table and almost falling off his chair.

 

“Fuck you, Zen Ben!” I say, but I still can’t help joining in with his infectious laughter.

 

We may not have answered all my questions or solved any of the great philosophical dilemmas of the ages, but Ben and I did manage to finish off more than half a case of beer, killed a whole afternoon and enjoyed hanging out together. And, I have to admit that I did feel better after talking to him. But, I still didn’t know how I was going to get back to my real life or find my happily ever after with my Sunshine.

 

Which is probably why, an hour later - after we’d finished off the other half of the case of beer - Ben and I were singing “Que Sera, Sera” at the tops of our lungs as the bouncer deposited us forcibly into a cab and sent us on our way.

 

So much for taking the philosophical approach to things, huh?

 

 

End Notes:

 

Too much philosophy and not enough smut? Yeah, for me too. Sorry. I'll get to work on a bit more smut for you for the next chapter. Sorry too for the Brian bashing. Both were sorta necessary for plot development. I know that you're probably all complaining right about now and are going to send me reviews that I don't need to worry about the plot, just write more PWP, but every now and then I just feel the itch for a plotty chapter and can't resist. You'll all survive. I hope. TAG

 

 

Chapter 20 - Zen and The Art of Twink Maintenance by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

 

I'm Baaaaack! Sorry about the delay in posting - Real life, midterms and actually having to work for a living got in the way of writing for a couple weeks. But, here is the next installment - Brian is finally getting the concept down that he can't fight fate. Can he accept the life he's been handed? Read on and see.  Enjoy! TAG

 

 

 

Chapter 20 - Zen and The Art of Twink Maintenance.

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<13.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

"Don't try to fix it. Don't try to fucking fix it." I'm repeating my new mantra to myself over and over but I don't know if it’s going to help.

 

Fuck Zen Ben and his philosophical bullshit. How exactly am I supposed to just sit here and watch this without either losing my mind, storming out in a fit of jealousy or punching out the lights of the presumptuous twink who thinks he's leaving with my Sunshine. And Justin, he's so fucking hot with that silly plastic 'King of Babylon' crown on, that its taking all I've got not to just pull him to his knees and start fucking him right here on the dance floor of Babylon. So, simply repeating to myself that I'm not supposed to be trying to change things isn't really helping right now.

 

Okay, I admit that Ben's advice has been pretty good so far. After that drunken evening of philosophyzing, I must have passed out in the taxi before I got home and ended up waking the next morning to ANOTHER reset. This time, though, I've tried to take Ben's advice and not try to fix things. And so far, I have to say, it’s been working pretty well - nobody's been beaten up, bashed, or tried to kill themselves, so it must be working, right?

 

I haven't done everything the way I did that first time around, of course. I'm not that person any more - a lot of the cruel shit I did back then is just impossible for me to contemplate today. So, for instance, when Justin came to see me the night after our first meeting, there's no way I could have sent him away crying with my standard bullshit speech about how I didn't DO relationships or love. Instead I took him right back upstairs and made love to him all night. I'll never again turn him away like that, I don't care what Ben's philosophy says I should do.

 

Oddly enough though, none of my actions seem to change much overall about this year. Like, even though I go ahead and get him the internship at Ryder - I love having him around all the time and I love getting the benefits of his amazing work - somehow he still ends up working a second part-time job at the Diner when Deb's short handed one afternoon and Justin volunteers to help her out. He ended up thinking that the job was pretty entertaining, it gave him an excuse to hang out in the Diner more and he loves the ego stroking he gets from all the guys flirting with him. So, in spite of my interference, Justin's right back where he was that first time around, working as a waiter at the Liberty Diner. Ben would probably just say it was 'fate' or something.

 

The whole rest of the year has sorta followed suit. I didn't bother trying to make friends with Craig or Jennifer and they eventually found out on their own that Justin was gay. Jennifer, as expected, stuck by her son even though she didn't really understand all his choices. Craig turned into a raving homophobic asshole, just as I expected him to. However, this time I was ready for him when he tried to ram my Jeep with his car and, not only was I wearing a seatbelt, but I'd kept the car in gear and was able to pull away before he could do more than just scrape up the fenders. I was also ready when Craig tried to ambush Justin and I outside Babylon the next night and neatly avoided the sucker punch that had previously sent me to the ground. This time we were a lot more evenly matched and I gave Craig as many good punches as he gave me. The outcome was the same though - Craig gave Justin an ultimatum and Justin bravely announced he would never go home again - and my Sunshine ended up just where I wanted him, living with me in my loft.

 

And, even though I couldn't ever be as deliberately mean to Justin as I had been originally, we still have our ups and downs. I guess that's normal for couples, although since I have no experience being a 'couple' I didn't really expect it. I thought that once I had him, that everything would just work out perfectly for us. Yeah, right! We still fight. I'm not even sure why we're fighting sometimes. But it was one of those fights that sent him running off to New York and, after the guys and I found him and brought him back to the Pitts, resulted in Justin moving to Deb's even though I still wanted him with me at the loft.

 

So, now it's May and somehow we're back to almost exactly where we were that first time. Again Justin and I got into some ridiculous fight - I don't even remember what we were fighting about now - and he decided to teach me a lesson about not taking him for granted by entering that stupid 'King of Babylon' contest. Of course the beautiful, sexy little shit won, hands down. Now, he's trying to taunt me into reacting by picking up the twink who was standing next to me at the bar.

 

I hardly ever trick anymore, and never in front of Justin, and I definitely hadn't had anything to do with the little 'dreamboy' twink this time around. But, he happened to be there just when my obstreperous blond decided he needed to prove a point to me about how independent he can be. Which is why I'm now standing here repeating to myself that it won't do any good to try to fix this and at the same time contemplating either punching out the twink or throwing Justin over my shoulder and storming out.

 

"Justin. Cut it out and stop acting like a twat. I get the point, okay," I warn him as he stands next to me smirking.

 

"I don't think you do, Brian," he continues the rant he'd started on before we even got to Babylon tonight. "I'm not just your boy toy that you can do whatever you want with. You can't just order me not to come to the club or to stay away from someone you don't like."

 

"I wasn't trying to order you to do anything, Justin," I try again with an exasperated sigh. "I just didn't want to come here tonight and I wanted to spend the night with you. I thought you'd rather spend the night with me than hanging out with a thousand other half naked men."

 

As soon as I say the words I want to bang my head against the wall. First of all, when the fuck did Brian Kinney become the type to pass up ANY opportunity to commune with a roomful of semi-naked men? I'm pretty sure I had my dick with me when I came in tonight, so where the fuck did I lose it? And why is it this annoying blond twink can get to me like this and make me say or do the most out of character things?

 

Secondly, I know that the words I've just said are a lie. I did want to keep my Sunshine away from here tonight. Since I already know how the night will end, and that it's going to hurt like a bitch when I see him with that other man, can you blame me for at least trying for a different outcome? Ben's the wanna be Buddhist monk, not me - I'd look terrible in orange robes - I can only handle so much Zen.

 

Either way, my words now only serve to push Justin in the one direction I'm dreading. The independent little fuck has a point to make and he's not going to be stopped. 'Dreamboy' seems more than willing to go along with anything King Justin has in mind.

 

"You don't own me, Brian," my Twinkie ball & chain states angrily, then turns to 'dreamboy' who's been watching the entire discussion raptly. "Come on, Sean. You're hot. I've been watching you and you make me want to fuck all night. Let's get out of here."

 

"Justin. Please," I hear myself start to plead before I can bite my tongue

 

"I guess we could have a three-way," Dreamboy suggests, doubt heavy in his voice, "but he is kinda old."

 

That comment brings an evil gleam to Justin's piercing blue eyes. "And we're kinda outta here," he adds as he smirks once more in my direction before leading his new playmate down the stairs towards the backroom.

 

So, I know I can't fix this. I know it. It's kismet, right? This is payback for something I did in one of my past lives - probably the one where I killed Craig. Knowing I can't change it doesn't help much though. And, knowing what I'm going to see and how much it's going to hurt doesn't stop me from following down those stairs to watch as my Sunshine fucks the little Dreamboy.

 

You'd think I would have been prepared and therefore it would hurt less, right? Wrong. I see my blond with his pants down below his ass, the twink pressed against the wall under the stairs and Justin rocking into him with this beautiful, ecstatic, mesmerized look on his face and I'm devastated all over again. I feel hollow. It's like someone took a corkscrew to my chest, pulled out some invisible cork and let everything that was me drain out of my body. All that's left is this husk of pain and betrayal.

 

If all that Zen shit Ben told me is true, then this moment, this pain, this feeling of abandonment is necessary somehow. Fuck if I can I see how. How the fuck is having my guts wrenched out of me supposed to make me a better person? All I want to do is hit something or someone. I don't need this. I don't need to be reminded of what a shit I am or how I'm not worth his love. Fuck this Zen shit!

 

I saw when I came in that Rod, one of my least favorite bouncers, is working the door tonight. Luckily, Rod has a ridiculously short fuse. And I feel like lighting a match.

 

"Hey, Rod," I drawl as I casually saunter up to lean against the wall just inside the doorway where he's stationed tonight.

 

"Kinney," he replies laconically without bothering to do more than glance in my direction.

 

"I need a favor, Rod. I need you to deck me," I tell him calmly, which instantly gets his full attention.

 

"What the fuck are you talking about, Kinney," Rod replies, flexing his massive biceps as he scratches his head with one meaty paw.

 

"I want you to hit me square in the face, really hard."

 

"What shit are you high on tonight? Why the hell would I deck you, Kinney?"

 

"Well, you'll probably want to hit me because I just came from your mama's house and, even though she's got saggy tits and her twat smells like rotting fish, I went ahead and fucked her anyway," I say as nonchalantly as I can manage, although I almost choke on the distasteful words as I say them.

 

It takes almost a full minute for the sense of my words to filter through Rod's thick skull before he starts to seethe with anger. It's kinda interesting watching his face go from blank, stoic idiocy to confused meathead to outraged behemoth. By the time his face turns an ugly purple red, I swear I can almost see steam coming out his ears.

 

Of course, that's the last thing I see right before the ham-sized fist cocks back and slams dead center into my face, igniting a swarm of electric white lights that explode across my vision.

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<14.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

*Beep, beep, beep*

 

"Ahhh," I sigh as I switch off the alarm and then roll over to gather my Sunshine into my arms in a tight squeeze. "Much, much better."

 

"Morning," my blond says with a nice little naked wiggle as he squirms even closer to me.

 

"Good morning, Sunshine," I say as I expertly roll him onto his back with me on top. "You know, pretty boy, I have this uncanny feeling that in our past lives you've been a naughty little tease who has constantly done whatever he could to annoy me. Therefore, it's only right that you suffer your punishment in this life, don't you think? It's Karma."

 

"Ummm . . . " the confused blond looks up at me with an enticing mix of uncertainty and anticipation that makes me rock hard in an instant. "What kind of punishment?"

 

"First, pretty boy, I'm going to spank you until your ass is bright red and hot to the touch. Then, I'm going to get my revenge by spending the rest of the day fucking your ass into the mattress over and over until you beg me to stop," I growl softly into his perfectly shaped ear.

 

"Okay," Justin says with an impish grin as he wiggles under me causing our hard cocks to slide against each other, bringing out tandem moans.

 

I'm actually kinda getting to like these resets, I guess.

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

"Ben, I need another philosophy lesson," I state as I barrel into Professor Bruckner's office and flop into the chair in front of his desk.

 

"Uh, it's Brian, right? I haven't seen you since . . ." Ben looks at me completely confused by my presence.

 

"Since the White Party, yeah," I interrupt him so that I can hopefully skip over the intro lesson this time. "So, just put on your Zen hat for a minute and imagine that in a past life we already had this conversation and you told me all about Karma and Kismet and how I have to learn to accept things and not try to change everything. Yada, yada, yada. I got all that. What I need to know is what I do if I can't accept something. How does that work?"

 

"Alright," Ben says as he leans back into his desk chair, pushes his glasses up his nose and then steeples his fingers. "I can accept that we've already had this conversation and that Brian Kinney is sitting in my office discussing philosophy. And I'm assuming this isn't some kind of practical joke. Then, if we talked about the concept of kismet we must have talked about the nature of fate, right?"

 

"Well, if we did, it must have been after the first twelve beers cause I don't remember that part," I confess, snarky mask hopefully still in place.

 

"Oh. It was one of those conversations. I see," Ben laughs his big open laugh that always sets everyone around at ease, even me. "Okay. So, if there really is such a thing as fate then, by definition, it's inevitable and you can't really fight it. Right? It's your fate - it's going to happen no matter what you do. You can't change your fate. You can rail against it, complain, make yourself sick with remorse and worry but it won't do you any good."

 

"You're saying, again, that I need to just accept what's going to happen and not try to fight it," I grouse at him. "But what if the thing that's going to happen is horrible. What if it's going to hurt someone you love. How do you simply sit back and watch someone you care about being hurt and just accept it? I can't fucking do that, Ben. How does anyone do that?"

 

"That's sort of the point of fate, Brian. You have to accept it and just make the best of it. In some cultures, it's thought that, until the individual can do that - accept the inevitable and yet still strive to be the best person he can be even in the face of adversity - he'll be condemned to repeating that same life over and over again until he reaches enlightenment."

 

"Yeah, tell me about it," I reply sarcastically. "Fuck. I don't think I can do it."

 

"Look at it this way," Ben leans forward, getting into his subject. "What if you knew, without a doubt, that you were going to die tomorrow. What would you do? Would you spend the whole day crying and moping or would you go out and make the most of your last day?"

 

"In a way, that's what we have to deal with every day of our lives, we just don't realize it. You, me, someone you love - we could each of us die tomorrow. That's why it's so important to make the most of each day. Tell the person you love how much you love him and make all the good days as great as possible because you never know when the bad days are coming. Then fate won't be able to touch you."

 

"Shit. I think I liked this conversation better when we did it drunk," I say as I start to stand up. "When I hear it sober it sounds too much like a fucking Hallmark greeting card. But, whatever. Thanks, Ben."

 

"You're welcome, Brian. So, where are you off to now?" Ben asks, standing too as he reaches out, offering to shake my hand.

 

"I'm going home and fuck him again, of course. Isn't that what you just told me to do - make the most of every moment together and shit?" I reply over my shoulder as I'm heading out the door. "So, I'm going to go fuck him again and hope that it’s enough."

 

"Good luck, Brian," I hear Ben say and his words and laughter follow me down the hallway as I head back to my car and eventually back to my fate.

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

When I make it back to the loft after leaving Ben's office, I'm happy to see that my sleepy twink is still curled up snoring in bed. I leave the bag of takeout Thai on the kitchen counter and make a beeline to the bed, pulling my clothes off along the way. I slide in under the covers next to the toasty warm body of the beautiful blond who immediately scoots closer and wraps his arms around my waist.

 

"You're back," he purrs. "How's your friend?"

 

"Ben? He's fine. He wasn't the one in need of moral guidance, though. It was me."

 

Justin chuckles softly. I look down on him with one eyebrow raised, silently asking him what was so funny. This only brings on more chuckling and encourages me to squeeze him to me even tighter.

 

"The way you bolted and ran out of here spouting that you had to talk to a friend, yelling at me to stay put, I thought there was some emergency," Justin confesses as his hand starts to stray, making indecipherable symbols on my chest. "So, what has you in such a moral quandary, Mr. Kinney?"

 

"I had to ask Ben what to do about you, of course," I tease, relaxing into the pillow and allowing myself to enjoy the tickling sensations that trail wherever his hand goes.

 

"Me? Well, what did you two decide to do with me?" He demands, just a tad bit affronted at having been discussed behind his back.

 

"Oh, Ben convinced me to keep you," I boldly state while trying to hide a smile.

 

"Well, good," Justin smiles and settles his head back comfortably on my chest, just the way I like it. "You know, I've always liked Ben."

 

"You twat," I complain affectionately, emphasizing my words with a kiss to the side of his head. "But it’s true. When you do finally meet, you and Ben will get along great, Sunshine."

 

"What else did you and Ben decide about me?" Justin asks with that innocent curiosity that I hope he never loses.

 

"Well, he said that in his professional opinion, and of course I'm only paraphrasing here, but that I should fuck you silly every chance I get and make sure I enjoy every minute of it."

 

"Mmmmm. Yeah, I really, really like Ben," Sunshine smiles, throws off the covers and climbs up my body till he's straddling my hips. "I think you should always take his advice, Brian. In fact, I think we should start taking it right now."

 

Justin leans down and bites at my lower lip while his hands brace against my chest, his fingertips brushing tantalizingly across my nipples. I reach around to grab hold of that perfect bubble butt and I have to smile at the heat of his skin, still slightly warm from his spanking earlier. The delicious memory of how eagerly Justin took his 'punishment' was all it took to renew my hard on. I let my fingers knead that warm, firm flesh, relishing the feel and enjoying the reaction I get from my wanton blond who's clearly ready for more.

 

Making the most of my day, I efficiently flip our bodies over so that my pretty boy is pinned under me. I start to kiss down his neck and chest, nibbling and tasting along the way. His smooth, perfect skin is slightly sweaty from the heat of the blankets and he tastes salty sweet. I love his taste - his skin, his mouth, his cum. I lick my way lower, leaving a couple of harder bites along the way. There’s this electricity between the two of us that sparks everywhere that our bodies touch and each little bite causes a tingle of heat to radiate out, pulsing through my body and reverberating in my achingly hard cock.

 

I graze over his nipples on my way, blowing softly on the wetness that my tongue leaves, causing goosebumps to sprout on his skin and eliciting a gasp from my happy blond. I don’t linger though because I have a much more sumptuous target in mind. As I keep going, I nip at his taut abdominal muscles, wondering fleetingly again how he manages to stay so lithe while he eats so much and never exercises - good genes, I guess.

 

When I reach the fragile, thin skin of his loins, I nibble more lightly. I’m intent on tasting every centimeter of his delicious skin while working my way to his center. My nose is tickled by his soft golden pubes as I near his solid, warm cock. I feel the warmth of it against my cheek as I move and I let the silky smooth skin slide along the side of my face, my eyes closed while I soak in the tantalizing feeling. Justin moans at the barely-there contact, wanting more. I’m holding his hips still as I nuzzle into his crotch, breathing in his musky aroma, exciting me even more, if that’s possible.

 

Finally, I turn my head and let myself take a taste of that straining, pulsing rod. I lick up the hard, smooth shaft and taste the dripping tip, savoring every drop. Fuck, it’s ambrosia! It’s so hard to hold back at this point, once I’ve tasted him. But I want more tonight than just that fleeting taste and, though I love to suck his cock more than almost anything, tonight I want to possess him completely. I only let myself lick at the firm yet soft head for a moment more and then I pull back so that I can continue my exploratory journey lower still.

 

Bending his legs up and cupping my arms underneath his body so that I have better access, I gently lave at his sack, taking each ball into my mouth briefly and getting pleasure from the feeling of the heaviness inside. I then softly suck along his raphe until I can reach what’s waiting below. I lightly lick lower, my tongue trailing deeper into his crack until I brush across the tight little pucker hiding there. I suck at the outer ridges and nibble at the tender skin, making the area dripping wet with my saliva. When I finally reach inside with my tongue, exploring each ridge of the tight ring of muscles, I have to groan at the overwhelmingly erotic sensations - Justin's smell, his taste, the warmth and closeness of the snug well.

 

Justin's whimpers and moans tell me when he's ready for me to move on, although I could probably keep rimming him for hours, since I get almost as much pleasure out of doing it as he gets on the receiving end. He's nice and wet now, though, which was my original purpose. Pulling back, I reach to the nightstand and grab a pre-lubed condom from the always-full bowl, rip the packet open and hand it to Justin. I love watching him put condoms on me with his long, nimble, artistic fingers. He rolls the latex down my straining shaft and I tingle at his touch as much as at the care with which he does this simple task.

 

Then it's time and I quickly line up my cock at that most intimate entrance, teasing a little as I playfully slide my dick up and down his crack still wet with my saliva. Each time I brush across his rosy red little pucker, his hips jerk upwards, eager to welcome me inside. When I do actually push in, he gasps and I love that I can take his breath away so effectively. Of course, the sensation of entering that hot, tight, deep well takes my breath away too and I'm probably gasping for air right along with my boy, but I'm so lost now in the delirious pleasure that I can't hear what noises either of us are making. All I can think of as I slide home into the depths is that this is exactly how I want to feel for the rest of my life and that I'll do whatever I have to in order to make this happen.

 

"Now, Brian. Fuck me!" Justin moans once he's adjusted and I'm more than happy to comply with his wishes.

 

Hitching his legs up higher onto my shoulders so that I can slide in even deeper, I start to move in and out slowly at first. His tight walls grip my cock snugly. I can’t hold back. I have to increase my pace or go mad from the neverending stimulation as I thrust and pump and rut mindlessly. This is my home. This is heaven. This is everything that I’ve ever wanted. I don’t want it to stop but it can’t go on because with each motion the electric tension builds until I feel like every nerve ending in my body is on fire. And then it all coalesces downward into the pit of my stomach, a huge ball of energy that explodes outward, leaving my body tingling and draining all my essence through my cock to cement the connection between my body and that of my lover.

 

Justin cums a moment afterward, his jizz shooting in thick creamy ropes across his stomach and chest. I try to keep still until his body finishes convulsing and then I collapse onto him. We lie together, panting as our hearts beat synchronously. I wish I never had to move again. I’d happily lie here, glued to Justin’s lithe body with his rapidly cooling cum, never pulling out, if that were at all possible. But, it isn’t, unfortunately, so before I get too soft I roll to the side and pull out, but I don’t let go of my sweet blond.

 

My heart is aching. I don’t want to let him go. I don’t want to let anything, EVER hurt him. I love this young man so much. I love Justin. I can’t tell him now, of course, because he thinks we just met last night, but I know that we’ve been together forever. I’ve finally convinced myself that I can’t control everything and I can’t protect him no matter how much I want to. Our lives will be what they will be. Everytime I try to fix things, I just make it worse. It’s time to concede that fate has won and I can’t fight it anymore.

 

Time to take Ben’s advice, I guess. I have to let go - relinquish any pretense of control and just accept where my life will take me. It’s hard, but I’ve tried everything else and no matter what, it’s always ended up back at this same point - this same day. I guess that I wouldn’t be the man I am today if my life hadn’t been the way it was. I probably wouldn’t know how much I love Justin if I hadn’t lived through all the pain and discord we’ve had to weather. All I do know for certain is that I want to be with him and love him forever and, if the only way I can do that is to accept the future that I know is coming, I’ll do it and I’ll somehow survive it even though I’ll feel like dying everytime Justin gets hurt.

 

“Justin,” I whisper into the ear of the wondrous man lying next to me, just as he starts to fall into a deep sleep. “Whatever happens - no matter what comes next - I’ll be there for you. I love you and I want to be with you no matter what. We can do this. We can make the most of whatever happens. Just know that I wouldn’t change anything, because everything that happens brings me closer to you. I’ll wait for you, Justin. Whatever it takes. I’ll wait and I will accept whatever I have to get through to be with you.”

 

My Sunshine is already lightly snoring before I finish my little soliloquy. I leave one last kiss on his perfect, soft coral lips and then lay my head next to his on the pillows. Strangely enough, I feel an unfamiliar sense of peace as I finally drift off to join Justin in sleep.

 

 

End Notes:

 

Hope that wasn't too disjointed - I've had to write in little increments lately and it really messes with my creativity. The good news is that it looks like Brian's got it this time. So, what's going to happen next?  You'll have to keep reading to see. The final chapter(s) are coming soon.

 

 

Chapter 21 - The Prince and The Palace by Tagsit
Author's Notes:

Finally - The final, ridiculously romantic chapter. I've had endless computer problems but I have persevered for you, dear readers, so that I could post this final installment to the fic that would not end. I hope you like it. Enjoy! TAG

 

 

Chapter 21 - The Prince and The Palace.

 

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<15.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

*Beepbeepbeep, Beepbeepbeep, Beepbeepbeep*

 

“Fuck, fuck, fuck!” I yell as the fucking alarm goes off and it feels like my head is going to explode.  

 

I roll towards the far side of the bed and flail around for at least a minute trying to find the fucking alarm to shut off the noise before I finally realize that the annoying sounds are coming from behind me. When did I put the alarm back on the nightstand on my side of the bed? I roll back to where I started with a groan, since the motion makes my head spin one direction and my stomach spin the opposite way. I pat at the area of the nightstand where the horrible sound is emanating from for several seconds before I hit the alarm snooze button by sheer accident.

 

The sudden silence is so welcome that all I can do is sigh and sink back into the pillows. Why the fuck do I have this pounding in my head and the queasy feeling in my stomach? What the fuck was I doing last night? I try to focus my mind enough through my hangover to remember what brought on this latest round of self-abuse. Nothing comes immediately to my foggy mind, though, so I decide to roll over and try for more sleep, hoping it'll be clearer the next time I wake.

 

I roll to the left and reach out, expecting to find a warm, willing little blond who likes to snuggle, but the bed next to me is cold and empty. This fact pierces through the alcohol haze instantly. I sit up abruptly, causing a wave of nausea to break over me. I fight it down, though, much more worried about my missing twink than whether or not I'll keep my dinner down.

 

"Justin," I call out, wincing as the sound of my own voice jars against the inside of my skull. "Justin, where the fuck are you?"

 

There's no answer. The loft is eerily silent and feels somehow barren. I can sense that he's not here without even looking around. Something is very wrong here.

 

Just then the snooze alarm goes off. *Beepbeepbeep, Beepbeepbeep, Beepbeepbeep.* The sound is wrong, somehow. Did I get a new clock? I look around at the offensive little noisemaker and, instead of the slightly beat up clock radio that I bought when I first moved into the loft after college, I see a sleek, brushed steel, modern-looking clock/MP3 player.

 

"Shit!" That's the wrong clock. I don't buy that clock until later. The old one finally gives up the ghost just after Justin leaves for L.A. I'll buy that clock as its replacement. How can it be here now?

 

Still in a hungover daze, I reach towards the questionable contraption and finally shut off the incessant alarm. Without the noise blaring in the background, I can now think, so I try to piece together what I remember from last night to figure out what's happening.

 

The last thing I remember is Justin. He was here, in my bed. We'd made love again and then we fell asleep. I wasn't drinking. Nothing bad happened that I can remember. Nobody hit me or ran me over with a car and I didn't pass out drunk or stoned. I shouldn't have triggered another 'reset'. I should be waking up with Justin in my arms, ready to start out on another try at our life together. So, why isn't Justin here? And, why do I feel like I drank half a distillery last night?

 

The overwhelming sense of wrongness suddenly overcomes me and I feel the sloshing contents of my stomach beginning to heave. I stumble off the bed and almost fall into the bathroom, just barely making it to the toilet before I start to vomit. After coughing up several vile deposits into the porcelain bowl, I collapse back onto the cool tile floor. The cold seeping up through the flooring helps calm me and feels good on my overheated skin.

 

"Think, Kinney," I tell myself as I lay there and try again to collect my thoughts.

 

"Okay, yesterday was another reset day," I'm talking aloud to myself, the noise helping to drown out the unnerving silence. "I woke up and . . . Justin was there, of course. . . . I remember going back to see Ben, to ask him more questions . . . I went back to the loft and fucked Justin again. . . And then we fell asleep. Right? That's all, right?"

 

"So where the fuck is he? Maybe he left already this morning? Would he leave without saying goodbye? Did I screw up again? Did I say something to scare him off?"

 

I lay there on the cold tile floor musing for a while longer, trying unsuccessfully to recall something I might have done or said this time around to alienate my blond. I apparently doze off for a bit, waking with a start at some later time and realizing I'm freezing cold now. My hips are screaming in pain from sleeping on the hard, chilly floor. But, at least my stomach seems to have settled a bit. I manage to push myself up into a sitting position and, after a moment or two of gathering my resolve, I climb to my knees and crawl back to my bed.

 

Just as I'm lying down and start to pull the duvet back up, my cell phone, which is sitting on the table next to the bed, begins to play the tune of that annoying aria from the opera Carmen that I always associate with Ted. Each ring feels like it's piercing a new hole through my aching skull. I locate the damn phone without having to crack open my eyes after only a few tries and somehow manage to hit the right button to answer the call.

 

"Kinney," I croak, barely recognizing my own raspy voice.

 

"Hey, Boss," Ted's overly cheerful voice blares out. "I just wanted to let you know that the contracts for the new Bronian Motors account came in this morning. That should equate to a cool two million in profits over the next three years. Great going, Brian."

 

"Yippee," I say sarcastically. "Marty Ryder will be so pleased."

 

"Ryder?" Ted's voice conveys his confusion. "Why would Ryder care? Did you steal that account from Ryder? I didn't know that."

 

"Huh? What the fuck are you talking about, Theodore?" I moan into the phone as another stab of pain slices through my head. "Never mind. I'll figure out whatever you're trying to tell me when the guy with the jackhammer lays off drilling into my skull."

 

"He, he, he. Michael did mention that you'd showed up at his house late last night and appeared to have tied one on. Sounds like it's a whopper! I'll tell Cynthia to make sure she has the extra large bottle of aspirin waiting next to your latte this morning. Well, I'll let you go, Bri. I just thought you'd want to hear the good news first thing. See you at the office later, Boss."

 

Ted hangs up before I can get in another word. What the hell is going on this morning? Usually even when I'm hungover things make more sense than they are this morning. The only thing I know for certain is that I need to find Justin.

 

I crack open my eyelids, exposing my dry-as-dirt eyeballs to the glare of sunlight coming in through the unshaded windows in the main room. I eventually manage to focus on the keyboard of the phone and punch in the numbers for Justin's cell phone, thankful again that one of the first things I did when I started reliving my lives was to memorize his old high-school era cell phone number. If I'd had to get up to find the number this morning, it might have killed me. It seems almost too much to lie here and hold the phone to my ear while I wait for the call to go through.

 

"The number you have reached is no longer in service. If you feel you have reached this recording in error, please recheck the listing and try dialing the number again," says the mechanical voice that answers when I hit the 'Call' button.

 

"What the fuck?" I yell, immediately entering the number again.

 

After the fourth time I dial the number and get the same recording, I admit defeat and angrily toss the phone to the floor, collapsing back onto the bed. Why is everything going wrong this morning? Why do I feel like the thumpa, thumpa from Babylon has taken up residence in my brain when I can't remember actually drinking last night. And, most importantly, where's my fucking Sunshine this morning?

 

I'm not sure how much later it is when the phone rings again, but I've obviously been dozing. It takes me more than a few rings to wake up and figure out where I tossed my phone. I finally locate it on the floor next to the bed and just managed to hit the 'answer' button before it goes to voicemail.

 

"Kinney," I rasp out again.

 

"Brian? It's Jennifer. Is Justin there with you?" her suave, sophisticated voice seems blaringly loud as it issues through the small speaker on the cell phone.

 

"Huh?" is my eloquent reply.

 

How the hell did Jennifer Taylor get my cell phone number? How the fuck would she even know my name, let alone where to find Justin? I only just met him two nights ago - at least it was only two nights ago in this timeline, right? This isn't how the scenario goes. Jennifer isn't supposed to find out about us for weeks. Something is not right here.

 

"Are you okay, Brian? You sound a little . . . distracted," Jennifer pauses briefly but then continues when she doesn't get any further response from me. "Justin left me a message earlier this morning - something about looking for an apartment? I can't get through on his cell phone. I'm not trying to interfere, but . . . he sounded upset. Dare I ask, what's going on with you two?"

 

Alarm bells begin going off in my head. Little wheels and cogs click into place. A tiny metaphorical lightbulb goes on somewhere. The haze of my 100-proof hangover finally clears.

 

The new alarm clock with the different sound located on the wrong side of the bed . . . Ted calling me 'Boss' and seemingly confused when I commented about Ryder . . . Jennifer calling my cell phone to find Justin and asking if there's something wrong between us . . . AND, Justin isn't here. Justin ISN'T HERE.

 

FUCK!

 

The hangover that shouldn't be - the hangover that's so fucking bad it's as if I spent the entire night drinking and drugging. Which is exactly what I was doing the night Justin left . . .

 

I'm BACK! Not back in the past again. I'm back in the present. This isn't another 'reset' life. This is MY life. I've finally got my real life back!

 

Justin isn't here, but if I'm right, then I know where he is and I'm going to find him. I might not have been able to change the past. I had to learn to accept it because my past is what made me who I am now. But, I can change the future. I'm not going to let my Sunshine go. This I can fix.

 

"Brian? Brian, are you still there? What's wrong?" Jennifer's increasingly frantic voice eventually gets my attention once again as I start to make a plan.

 

"Sorry, Jennifer. I'm here," I respond. "Um . . . Justin isn't here right now, but I'll be seeing him shortly and I'll tell him you're trying to reach him. In the meantime, forget about that apartment he asked you about. Instead, I need you to get on something else right away. . . "

 

<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>

 

"What the fuck are you doing here, Brian? This better not be another repeat of last night. This time I'm not going to simply step aside and let you berate Michael. Haven't you already done enough? You've managed to drive away pretty much everyone who fucking loved you. You should stop and think before you make it even worse," Ben is blocking the doorway with his body as he pontificates, but I interrupt before he can get too far into the lecture.

 

"Good evening to you too, Professor. Here, these are for your lovely husband," I say, as sweetly as it's possible for me to say anything, batting my eyelashes and smiling inanely while I whip out from behind my back a bouquet of purple hyacinths, bluebells and violet geraniums.* "I promise I'm not drunk and I'm not here to yell at anybody this time. Now, be a good boy and tell Sunshine I need to speak with him. . . Pleeeeassse."

 

Ben just stands there for several moments, the slightly crushed flowers held loosely to his chest, as he surveys my demeanor and verifies that I'm truly not drunk or acting violent. Then he steps back hesitantly, holding the door open until I've stepped through. I move slowly and try not to make any threatening motions, because Ben still looks like he doesn't trust me fully. While he's generally a peaceful guy, and I may have an inch or so of height on him, he's got several pounds of muscle more than me and I don't want to put his pacifism to the test.

 

"Wait here," Ben says at last and moves towards the stairs.

 

I'm nervous as fucking hell and I can't just stand here waiting. I find myself apprehensibly bouncing on the balls of my feet. In order to stop myself from such an undignified spectacle and quell my nerves, I turn to pacing instead. It feels like I've been waiting here for hours, not just minutes.

 

First I hear the sound of footsteps on the floorboards overhead. Then, the footsteps move towards me and eventually I hear them on the stairs. Slowly, feet upwards, he's revealed to me as he starts down the steps, grabs the railing when he reaches the landing, and haltingly turns to walk down the last few stairs to meet me.

 

I haven't seen THIS Justin in so long. The sight literally takes my breath away. He must hear the gasp I make as I try to catch my breath since he looks up at me with a slightly worried frown. But his look of longing and concern certainly doesn't help me and I have to struggle to get my emotions back under control before I can go on.

 

That hot little twink I met five years ago under a street light was admittedly gorgeous. No one could argue that he wasn't probably the hottest thing ever to set foot on Liberty Avenue. He's always had that sassy, pert, pretty boy thing going for him. But, the man standing before me today is even more exquisitely beautiful than the youth I first encountered.

 

Justin's corn silk blond hair is longer now - perfect for running my fingers through it. The shaggy bangs droop over his brow and blend on the sides with the longer sideburns he now sports. His face has filled out some giving him a more mature air, even though he somehow still looks younger than his twenty-one years of age. His lithe, compact body is still trim but he's put on a bit more muscle over the years. He's still got that adorable dimple, annoyingly cute turned up nose and his skin is still as soft and creamy looking as always. However, there's even more self-confidence and determination in the way he moves now, which has always been the biggest turn on for me.

 

I guess what it all comes down to is that Justin isn't a boy anymore. He's a man. He's the man I love. And, I've never in my life met anyone who's half as beautiful as he is to me right now.

 

"Hey, Sunshine," I say as I openly admire the tight, worn-looking jeans and black v-neck pullover he's wearing.

 

"Brian. I'm not sure this is a good idea . . ." Justin starts to protest as he takes a step nearer.

 

I note that we have an audience now - Ben and Michael are on the landing waiting and listening raptly for what I'll say next. I'm not going to be deterred by unwanted spectators, though. After all I've been through, I'm not going to be put off by the fear of those two witnessing my vulnerability. I've seen, and done, a lot of scary things over my past lives. Emotion alone no longer scares me.

 

"I do want the same things, Justin. I want to move in the same direction as you," I tell him with conviction, able now to actually continue the conversation he started a few nights, or is it a few years, ago. "I just couldn't see it before, Sunshine. I wasn't able to tell you before, but I know now that I do want those things, as long as I can have you, too."

 

Justin's initial response is an unconvinced, almost angry, snort. He closes his eyes, shakes his head and bites at his lip, clearly more annoyed at me than anything else. Then he reaches up, covers his eyes and rubs at his temples with his right hand before wiping at his face and then visibly stiffening his spine in order to confront me.

 

"Brian," he starts out with a disbelieving and exasperated tone to his voice, crossing his arms as he stares me down. "Do you really expect me to believe that you've completely changed your mind about everything you've ever said to me in just one night? What happened to the man who told me flat out, only two nights ago, that he WON'T give me a house or family or any of the other things you know I want? You don't expect me to just accept this apparently miraculous change of heart, do you?

 

"No, I don't," I answer, rolling in my lips to hide my smile when his response is exactly as I predicted it would be. "I'm still fucking lousy at talking about shit, Sunshine. And, I didn't think you were just going to believe me right off. That's why I'm going to show you what I mean, instead of trying to tell you. Come on."

 

Before he can protest further I grab his wrist, pulling him backwards towards the door. He doesn't resist but he's not going with good grace either - the scowl of disbelief hasn't left his facade. All I can think is that he's fucking adorable when he's annoyed at me like this.

 

Tripping only slightly as I walk backwards out the door and down the front steps, I guide Justin after me until we reach the sidewalk and he finally sees the black stretch Hummer limousine waiting for us at the curb. His annoyed frown eases a little, replaced by curiosity. I just keep smiling as I turn to nod at the chauffeur who trots around to hold open the rear door.

 

"Brian?" Justin asks with a disapproving tone. "What are you up to?"

 

"No good, Sunshine, as always," I joke, trying to lighten the mood.

 

"Where are you going to take me, Brian?"

 

"I just want to show you something, Sunshine. You'll like this. I guarantee. Trust me, please. Now, be a good little twink and hop your perfect blond boy ass up there so we can get going now. We're running a tad late. Hurry, hurry."

 

Justin purses his lips up and shakes his head as if he's humoring an unruly spoiled child, but he lets me help him up into the limo nonetheless. I wave goodbye to Mikey and the Professor, who have followed us out and are standing on the walk, smiling at our retreating backs. Then, I follow my blond into the car and the driver closes the door behind.

 

I quickly scan the interior and happily note that everything seems in place. The AdMan in me, who's always aware how much of a part presentation plays in any campaign, silently approves of the tableau I've carefully prepared. Inside the limo, there's a lush padded bench seat down one long side. On the other side, there's a low table with a built in bar and entertainment center behind. I steer Justin to a seat halfway down before I gently press him to sit. On the table in front of where we're sitting is a bouquet of pale yellow roses tied with a gold fabric bow. The champagne bucket next to the flowers is full of a chilling bottle of sparkling wine and two glasses are waiting in holders to the right. There's soft Jazz music playing in the background and only dim bluish colored lighting illuminating the interior.

 

I pour two glasses of wine and hand one to the incredulous man sitting at my side just as I feel the vehicle start to drive away. Justin is finally smiling outright - a full-wattage Sunshine smile - and my heart melts the way it always does whenever I see that beaming beauty.

 

"Brian, what is all this? Where are you taking me?" Justin demands as he sips his wine, still smiling. "You're completely unbelievable - you know that, right?"

 

"It's true. I am," I reply with a smirk, reaching to grab hold of his free hand. "I'm not telling where we're going, though. It's a surprise. You'll just have to wait and see. In the meantime . . ."

 

I lift the cover off a compartment built into the table, revealing a refrigerated well containing a silver dish full of chocolate covered strawberries, a platter of several types of sliced fruit and a small bowl full of coconut covered vanilla ice cream balls.

 

"Is it true that the way to a man's heart is through his stomach, Sunshine," I ask as I pick up the largest of the ripe red berries and bring it to his sweet pink lips, laughing as he bites into the luscious chocolate covered fruit and a trickle of juice escapes to drip down onto his chin.

 

He giggles a bit and raises his hand to wipe his chin. I know he's still a bit angry at me but I can't resist. I grab his hand before it gets far and move instead to lick the syrupy sweet juice from his slightly stubbled chin. The taste of the strawberry, the chocolate and Justin together is overwhelming.

 

My hand, of its own volition, moves to the nape of his neck and I pull him towards me, claiming those chocolate smeared lips in a deep sensual kiss. He doesn't resist for even a moment - proving that the strawberry has done its job. His mouth opens to me, allowing my tongue entry. There's absolutely nothing sweeter than my lover's kisses, except maybe his kisses combined with strawberries. I'm not sure which sensation elicits the moans I hear breaking from deep in my chest as I devour Justin's soft, sweet lips.

 

We make out like silly teenagers for most of the rest of the drive. I really can't help myself - I'm so thrilled to be back in my right life at the right time and with Justin by my side where he belongs. Somehow, though, I eventually find the willpower to pull back. I know I have more to prove to him tonight than just what a fabulous kisser I am. I don't want to overshadow the true importance of what I'm trying to do tonight with simple lust. Instead, I spend the last few minutes of the ride plying him with food and wine. I assume that since he doesn't put up much of a fight, that it's working and that romantic heart of his is softening up just as it should.

 

Just as I empty the last of the wine into our glasses, the limo slows and then comes to a halt. The driver knocks discretely at the rear door. I slide over and pull the door latch, cracking the door open slightly to let him know we're ready.

 

"Ready, Sunshine?" I ask as the chauffeur holds the door open.

 

Justin climbs out and looks around at the wooded countryside, snow covering the ground and the pine trees. "Where the hell are we, Brian?"

 

"Technically, we're in West Virginia. But, it's less than half an hour outside Pittsburgh," I answer, smiling at his confusion.

 

"When you said you had something to show me, I didn't think it would be in West Virginia." Then Justin turns around and notices the large half-timbered Tudor styled building we've parked in front of. "Wow. What is this place? It looks like a fucking palace. Who lives here?"

 

"We do," I answer. "Or at least we will, I hope. I put an offer on it today."

 

I unlock the door and pull a scoffing blond inside. He's mumbling and shaking his head as I lead him into the living room where there's already a fire blazing in front of a small sofa. I sit him down on the couch and then move to stand next to the carved wooden mantle. In my pocket I can feel the small velvet covered box that is holding two matching platinum rings. Justin is looking up at me expectantly.

 

"The other night when I accused Michael of 'infecting' you with all sorts of romantic ideas, I was wrong," I start off hesitatingly. "It's the other way around, Sunshine. I'm the one who's been infected with all those ideas that I always thought I could never believe in. But then, five years ago I saw this beautiful, intrepid twink standing under a lamp post as I was coming out of the club and I was immediately corrupted, even though I refused to admit it."

 

"Since that night I've watched you almost die, I've almost died, we've fought, broken up and got back together. We've both hurt each other, numerous times, through stupidity or inaction. You've driven me almost literally crazy. I've tried repeatedly to drive you away. But, thankfully, here we are, still together and still in one piece. And, you know what? I wouldn't change a goddamned fucking thing, Sunshine. Because if it hadn't been for each of those fucking painful, horrendous experiences, I wouldn't have made it here today. I wouldn't be the person standing here that's finally ready to tell you how much I truly DO love you."

 

"Time and time again I thought it couldn't possibly be worth it. But, now I know that it was always worth it so long as I end up with you. I love you, Justin Taylor. I want to marry you. I want the house and the family and even the fucking golden retriever with you. Because you are worth everything I've ever gone through and all I know is that I couldn't go on without you. You infected me with all these romantic ideas and I've finally succumbed, Sunshine. So, what do you say? Will you marry me so we can be ridiculously romantic together?"

 

His sunshine smile lights up the room around us. He jumps up and I catch him in my arms and we kiss again. I close my eyes briefly to enjoy the sensation. I'm going to assume that this means 'yes' and that phase one of my campaign to win back my love is complete.

 

My plan from here on out is quite simple: First, I kiss him until he's breathless, then I spend the rest of the night making love to him in every room of this place.

 

And then, first thing tomorrow morning, we buy a new alarm clock - one that doesn't 'beep'.

 

The End.

 

*According to the Texas A&M,  'Aggie Horticulture' website, "The Language of Flowers", Purple hyacinths mean, 'I'm sorry, please forgive me', bluebells stand for, 'humility', and geraniums are for 'stupidity or folly'. Brian may not do apologies, but his florist apparently does.

 

 

End Notes:

 

Boy, this fic took wayyyyyyy too long to write for some reason. I got too distracted in the middle by writing a second WIP - sorry. I'm also sorry that there's no real good B/J action in the last chapter, but with all that romantic drivel, I just ran out of room. Oh well, for better or for worse it's done and I can move on now to my next brilliant story idea that's been eating at my brain - but which I wouldn't let out until I forced myself to finish this story. Thank you to all my readers who stuck with me through this one. I adore all of you and truly appreciate all your comments and reviews. Thank you, thank you, thank you - time and time again!  TAG

 

 

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