The Guy Next Door. by starlight
Summary:

Justin and Brian meet when Brian leaves Pittsburgh for a campaign. 

 

Lorie thanks for always being a great beta and the person I depend on to keep me straight when I throw new stories at you.

 

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.


Categories: QAF US Characters: Ben Bruckner, Blake Wyzecki, Brian Kinney, Craig Taylor, Cynthia, Debbie Novotny, Emmett Honeycutt, Gus Marcus-Peterson, Jennifer Taylor, Justin Taylor, Lindsay Peterson, Melanie Marcus, Michael Novotny, Molly Taylor, Original Character, Original Female Character, Original Male Character, Other Cast Regulars, Rodney, Ted Schmidt, Vic Grassi
Tags: Anti-Michael, Out of Character, Toppy Justin
Genres: Alternate Canon, Alternate Universe, Humor
Pairings: Brian/Justin, Melanie/Lindsay, Vic/Rodney
Challenges: None
Series: None
Chapters: 17 Completed: Yes Word count: 32990 Read: 105031 Published: Apr 23, 2017 Updated: May 17, 2017
Story Notes:

In this one Justin and Brian have never meet. Justin was not raised in Pittsburgh. A lot of characters will also have alternate lives, Ben won't have HIV and Blake is going to be a friend of Justin's from childhood. Vic is actually going to be alive this time.

1. Chapter 1 by starlight

2. Chapter 2 by starlight

3. Chapter 3 by starlight

4. Chapter 4 by starlight

5. Chapter 5 by starlight

6. Chapter 6 by starlight

7. Chapter 7 by starlight

8. Chapter 8 by starlight

9. Chapter 9 by starlight

10. Chapter 10 by starlight

11. Chapter 11 by starlight

12. Chapter 12 by starlight

13. Chapter 13 by starlight

14. Chapter 14 by starlight

15. Chapter 15 by starlight

16. Chapter 16 by starlight

17. Chapter 17 by starlight

Chapter 1 by starlight
Author's Notes:

This one was one that came to mind when I was watching people in a contest to build sand art. How I managed to turn a day sitting on the beach into a story is really making me wonder. LOL

 

I left the tag anti-Michael off but it might end up there later if I can't control him.

JUSTIN


I love the smell of a brand new morning, well, until I smell the dead fish. And is that a used condom on my step? I swear I'm going to kill my best friend. He promised to clean up after his friends. I went in looking for gloves but ended up with tongs and a garbage bag. I smiled at my new neighbor, who scowled at me. I swear the guy needs to find a life, he is such a downer. If he wasn’t so hot, then I wouldn’t waste my time on him. I gave him my best smile, which he has yet to return. You'd think with all the guys he has doing the walk of shame, he'd be happier. I mean, we live on the beach for Christ sake, there are waves and sunsets and stinky smells, but no, he's pissy because I don't keep my side of the beach pristine. I honestly wanted to yell ‘it's Riley not me ruining your morning’, but I'd probably just get another growl and door slammed in my face.


I tried to be nice to him when he jogged by me wearing shorts and muscles, but he just rolled his eyes and kept going. He treated my masterpiece as if it was just me playing in the sand. I was working on my newest sand art, not playing. I guess the fact that I had a pail and shovel that my niece left behind did sort of make it look like I was playing, but sand art is serious business here in Sandcove. Everyone wants to beat me, they just don’t have the ability to.


The next day I made him dinner for two. I figured with as many guys as run through, they have to eat something between orgasms, but he snorted at me then said he doesn’t feed the animals, just pets them and sends them away after they entertain him. I took my jambalaya home and ate the whole thing, imagining him starving. I made sure after that to cook with all my windows open, so he could smell what he was turning down.


I watched as once again he tore out and left for whatever he does. I don’t get it, why wear a suit when most of us barely remember to wear a shirt? Of course, I stopped that life a long time ago. I made enough money that I didn’t have to do anything, and my grandmother made sure I never needed to go to my father again after his last attempt to pray my gay away.


All my father accomplished was to drive my mother and sister from his life. He’ll never get to meet my niece, Amelia because my sister no longer wants him near her family. My sperm donor seemed to think my sister should help him out by marrying the asshole son of his business partner. I thought it was likely that my father and his partner knew Herbie wouldn’t get a wife without them forcing a woman to take on the man. There are just too many things wrong with a guy who tells everyone that wives are only there so that someone can clean his home. He seems to think that fucking other women is his right. My sister decided it was her right to kick his ass and marry the guy who worships her.


I’m still waiting for the perfect man. Every time I think I’ve found the perfect guy, it ends badly. I don’t mean to be an ass and it’s going to sound like I am, but I tend to get irritated at guys when they start acting territorial. They seem to think because I look innocent that I need them to go all caveman on anyone who looks in my direction. The last one seemed to think I wanted to listen to the very bad music his garage band played. I really tried, but who the hell wants to listen to music that sounds like cats fighting each other? I’m thinking not anyone who can hear. He didn’t like my opinion and we broke up. The one before him seemed to think I was a woman and needed to be treated like a delicate flower who doesn’t have a brain cell between my ears. If I’m going to mention my many bad ideas in dating, I should mention the guy who followed me everywhere. After only one date he seemed to think I couldn’t take a shit if he didn’t wipe my ass. He actually bought me toilet paper because mine wasn’t environmentally friendly. I really wanted to ask him if he thought what you put on that paper made it matter anymore. Now, my idiot brain had latched onto Mr Growly. My two besties told me to give up because the guy runs through men the way I do pizza with everything on it.


I finished picking up everything after working for four hours and decided that Riley was going to hear a big fat ‘no’ the next time he wants to throw a party. It was a perfect day to work on a new design. It’s not like I have a whole lot to do anyway. I could make sure Riley gets the guy out of his bed since my Gran was planning on visiting soon. She wouldn’t really care, and would most likely buy him more condoms, that I’d end up picking up. I was just about to go down there when I see something fall off my roof to the ground in front of me. How the hell did a condom get up there? I scooped it up and threw it out with the other six I picked up. Riley and I need to talk about the orgy he seemed to be having last night. Riley has his own place but hates being alone so he invades my house until his sister calls to say she’s going to throw his surfboard in the garbage if he doesn’t clean up his shit. It gets him home, then he runs here when she expects more from him. I don’t mind most of the time, because I hate living alone and there are plenty of empty bedrooms in the house.


I met Riley when I came here to get away from snow and every asshole in my life. He was walking by with one of his surfboards and stopped to hit on me. We talked for a while before he said I was in his ‘friends’ category, something about me being a bit too nice for him to do bad things to. I thought he was a bit of a flake, so I was great with just being friends. He turned out to be great in the friends department. He never left me hanging when we went out clubbing, if we went together we left together, usually with a guy in tow for at least one of us.


It’s just lately I’ve gotten the itch to try the whole relationship thing again. Tricking is fun, but it’s like I have to constantly explain to them what I do and don’t like, and what’s the point when I might not see them again.


I finally got to the sand that I could work with, unfortunately, it’s close to growly’s house, but in line with the border of my property. I went to get water to get started and let the sand get harder so I could work with it. I was almost through with my dragon when the tide started to rise. I forget sometimes out of laziness that I need to work further back, the head fell and I was staring at it when someone snorted behind me. I turned to Growly, waiting for whatever words of wisdom he wanted to impart on me.


“Is there some reason your sculpting a penis instead of finding one of your own?” He snarks at me.


“I get tired of guys thinking that having this ass means I need someone to fuck it. I like to be the dick they ride, not the other way around.” I snark back.


He stared at me, tilting his head while making me feel a bit violated. “It’s hard to see you and not want that ass.” He tells me, taking off for his usual ten-mile run.


Did he just hit on me? Yes, I think he did. I watched the surf return the sand back to the way it was before I tried to change it. I thought about maybe hitting on him when he ran back by, but I saw a car pull into his driveway and a couple guys get out looking as if Growly was planning an orgy of his own tonight. I didn’t need a guy who would end up not wanting more than his next trick, so I ran into the water and swam out far enough that it wouldn’t be possible for me to end up letting him treat me worse than he already does. I’d have to live next door watching the next guy and the next and really, I like my house too much to move.


BRIAN


I ran back to see if my neighbor was still there. I’ve been an asshole to him since I moved here. He’s fucking hot as hell, but it’s like all he wants to do is party his life away. I’ve been trying to figure out what he does, but all I’ve seen is him doing is playing on the beach all day. He obviously has money, because that house alone screams money, but it’s like a constant party over there. I’m sure he thinks all I do is trick, but every time I see him my dick gets hard as hell and I take care of it, hoping the guy I’m fucking will get my neighbor out of my head.


I came here to get away from people for a while. I made the mistake of sleeping with my best friend when I was drunk and high one night. I woke up with the worst hangover I’d had in a while and watched as Mikey was walking out the door like he was sneaking out. I asked him why he was acting so strange and he acted as if I was the one acting strangely.

 

*FLASHBACK*

 

“I didn’t want you to think I expected anything after last night.” He tells me.


“I wouldn’t have made you clean up the mess,” I tell him, looking at my loft with things all over the place.


“I mean after we finally made love.” He answers.


I backed away when he tried to kiss me because I didn’t remember doing anything past the shots he wanted to do that night. He left, saying it didn’t have to change us, but I had a feeling he was just saying what he thought I wanted to hear. I ran into my bedroom and found condoms that were definitely used and were mine. I kept waiting for Mikey to tell me he was just fucking with my head. I stayed away from him for a couple of weeks, not wanting to deal with screwing up with the person I couldn’t love the way he wanted me to. When I first met him I thought I did love him, but I noticed that when I thought about sex, he was the last person I saw in my bed. After that, I never really thought about it again.


When I came back from a business trip, I decided it had been enough time that we could go back to the way things were. He seemed to think we should spend more time together without the other people we usually went out with. I paid a guy to show Mikey a good time and ended up finding out that he was telling other people he was in a relationship with me.


Emmett came charging into my loft a couple of days later asking me if I’d lost my mind.


“You do realize that unlike you, Michael can’t fuck someone and not be in a relationship.” He tells me.


“I can’t even remember past the shots that Mikey kept ordering,” I answer him.


“He keeps telling me that you were telling him you wanted to be in a relationship and to get married. It was why he slept with you. He thought you meant him.” He tells me.


“Shit. Has he told Deb any of this?” I ask.


“Of course. But she told him that if you had wanted him it wouldn’t have taken you years and thousands of tricks to figure it out. She isn’t thrilled that you two slept together, but she also knows that you most likely never meant for Michael to be a trick. She told me to tell you that you need to make sure Michael understands that you don’t see him as more than your friend. So you're safe from the wrath of Deb. I knew when Michael had to practically drag you out of the bar that I should have come with you guys. He kept saying it was his job to get you to bed, not in it. Which is apparently what your drunk ass thought when he got you here.” He tells me.


“I don’t remember any of it. Mikey seemed to be taking it for what it was, a trick that night, but now he’s telling people we have a relationship. I never told him I wanted more.” I tell him.


“He said he’s letting you get used to the idea before he moves in with you,” Emmett tells me.

 

*END FLASHBACK*


I took the offer to work in Sandcove handling an account for Surfwear and help brand them. Ginger, the co-owner wanted me to be available for the summer, the company sponsored SANDCOVES, a surf competition and two-week festival. Surfwear was looking to go national and wanted someone to be here locally and I was more than happy to have a reason to leave town for a few months. Especially when Mikey showed up wanting a repeat, only sober this time. I told him I didn’t want to screw up any more than I already had with him. He kissed me and said it wasn’t a mistake but what we both wanted. He got angry when I stood there unresponsive to him. It felt wrong, and I couldn’t fake that I didn't like him touching me anymore.


My first day here I almost swallowed my tongue when I looked out the kitchen window into the house next door and saw my neighbor naked in his kitchen, dancing around. I had to assume that he didn’t realize the house next to him was rented. I watched him shaking his ass as if enticing me. Then he danced out of sight. I ended up picking up guys for the next week just to get the memory of that dance out of my head.

 

The next time I saw him he was sitting on the sand with a bucket and shovel playing like a kid. He smiled at me and waved but I’d just spent a week fucking him out of my head, so I acted uninterested. I couldn’t believe I was even entertaining fantasies of joining him in the kitchen that morning after I saw him sitting there digging in the sand. He stopped smiling at me and continued what he was doing. When I got up to my back porch I turned to see him with his ass in the air and ended up going back out to find another guy to relieve the massive hard-on he seems to not realize he gives me. Although, the guys I’m fucking seem to enjoy what the guy is doing to me.


Then he fucking shows up like Deb would, with dinner for me, saying that he’s sure the guys and I needed the food to keep up my stamina. I made some smart ass remark about not feeding the animals, thinking it was funny, but he took whatever he cooked home and I watched as he ate the whole damn thing. Then somehow found it erotic when he licked his spoon. So, you could say I've been kind of an asshole every time I see him, but it's like I don't affect him at all.


I jogged back to my house since my team was arriving to go over the campaign for the surf competition. Ginger told me she’d try to get her brother to come to the office, but he tends to think his only job is surfing and screwing fans. I had a feeling she was jealous that his job was wearing the clothes while he won surfing competitions while hers was to run their business. I was disappointed when my neighbor wasn’t still on the beach but relieved that I wouldn’t be sitting in my house trying to work while hiding my hard on.


I looked at my cell and realized a hard-on wasn’t really as bad as Mikey leaving twenty voice messages on my phone.




 

 

Chapter 2 by starlight

BRIAN


I handed Cynthia my phone, so she could send the number that I didn’t have time for away. I had to have a way for Lindsay to contact me since she was bringing Gus here to spend time with me. She and Mel were going to visit Mel’s family after dropping him off. I set us up in the dining room to give everyone space. Ted was conferencing in but would be here before the event. We were all about to settle in when once again the guy next door had to cook something that made me want to run over and steal it. It’s like he goes out of his way to make me smell the amazing things he cooks. I could see the other people sniffing with me so it’s not that I’m jonesing to take the guy for a ride that is making it seem like his cooking is just something else to lust after.


“I was going to suggest ordering in, but maybe we could convince your neighbors to share,” Cynthia tells me.


“I might have pissed him off, so it's unlikely he's going to want to be neighborly right now,” I whisper to her.


She didn't ask, because she knows me well enough to know I could piss off Mother Teresa if I met her. Ginger finally showed up for the meeting. She laughed when she heard stomach growls all over the room.


“I swear Justin should just open a restaurant. Instead, he just cooks enough for half of Sandcove. Riley says it's why he stays at Justin’s house all the time.” She tells us.


“I’m going to get a drink, does anyone want one?” Cynthia asks.


She went to the kitchen while Ginger started reading over the contracts. I wanted to know more about Justin.


“You know my neighbor?” I ask.


“Most people do, he’s friendly to everyone. I rented this house for you because it’s most likely the only way to get Riley to attend a meeting. He stays with Justin, instead of at his house.” She tells me.


“I thought you said Riley was playing around?” I ask. Because why, if you have that at home?


“They’re only friends, Riley hit on Justin, but then decided he rather be friends. Justin keeps Riley from going too far when he gets ideas for something fun to do. I’m really surprised Justin didn’t come over to meet you. He always makes food for people who are new to the area.” She tells me.


I didn’t want her to know that Justin most likely thinks I’m a jackass. I was trying to think of a way to get her to introduce us again, so I could show him I wasn’t a complete asshole. We got distracted when Cynthia made a loud comment in the kitchen.


“If Justin ever opens a restaurant I think there will be more than the food for people to come to see,” Cynthia said from the kitchen.


I got up to see what he was doing that seemed to keep Cynthia in the kitchen and watched as apparently he still hasn’t learned to use his curtains. It was really impressive that he was cooking naked, with a towel on his head.


“You were an asshole when you could have seen that ass up close and in person?” She laughs, most likely at me staring like a virgin at a pin-up.


Paul comes running in to see when he heard 'ass', the man is worse than me sometimes. I block his view because Justin doesn’t deserve strange men ogling him. I’ve at least met him, so it’s different. Ginger comes in and makes a call.


“Justin Taylor, while I’m sure everyone loves seeing you cook, it might be good to, I don’t know, get dressed before you end up with company looking for more than your cooking.” She tells him, hanging up.


He just kept on cooking, not a care in the world that some pervert might be watching and trying to figure out a way into that house. Murph tried to look out the window but why was anyone’s guess, Murph is as straight as they come.


“Let’s not give him a reason to call the police on peeping toms,” I growl.


“It’s professional Brian.” He tells me.


“I doubt you could say you were looking for artistic purposes, to the police,” I tell him, peeking to see if Justin got dressed. Nope.


Murph turned to Ginger and asked her what he wanted to know. “I’ve heard of a Justin Taylor. He disappeared from the art world after selling his Visual Effects and Animation business and ending his comic series. A lot of us art geeks speculated on where he went. He left without an explanation to anyone about what he was doing. He could do graphics in a way none of us have ever been able to, but he mastered all forms of art. I expected him to paint with his talent, but he never bothered, most likely since he made more money in the movie business and wanted to retire from it all. Of course, a lot of people are hoping he’ll restart his comic, Time Bender, and that he’ll bring the hero back out of the vortex he jumped into. Sorry to geek out, but I’m sure your friend Michael was dealing with people who were trying to find out why he quit. It was a big deal to the comic world.” He tells me.


“I remember Mikey talking about it, but he really thought the comic wasn’t that great. Captain Astro was his comic of choice.” I tell him, checking again, and yep now he’s swinging it for us.


“Captain Astro died because of lack of followers. No one passed the age of twelve cared anymore. Time Bender is still being talked about in chat rooms, and there’s even a petition to get him to start it up again. There are millions of people signing it. If that’s the Justin Taylor I think it is, that man is worth millions.” Murph tells us.


“Why do you think it’s him?” I ask.


“He wrote a comment on his web page before signing off for good about wanting to see waves and sunshine. He lived in Maine for most of his life, there was a joke that he was tired of people thinking his house belonged to Stephen King. So being here would line up with what he said.” He tells us.


“He’d rather just be Justin Taylor, beach bum, with me.” A guy says, coming into the kitchen and looking out my window. He opened it and yelled, “Justin that’s just mean to distract them with your cooking so they’d look at your ass!” He closed the window, looking at me and Paul, and smiled at Ginger. “You brought me eye candy so I’d show?” He asks, looking us up and down.


I looked, but he really didn’t do it for me. He would have, but I’d been dealing with a blond problem lately. I looked again and it wasn’t so bad, naked cooking is probably a sport somewhere. I waved back when he turned around waving at us but pulled the towel off his head and teased me by turning and putting the towel around his waist without showing me the total package.


JUSTIN


I could have ducked and covered, but you know, I like to give a little show and tell every once in a while. It’s not like Ginger hasn’t ever walked in and seen it all, but she really doesn’t see my twink body the way most men do. She told me they have to look like Ben for her to care. I told her she had to grow a dick for Ben to care.


Ben was someone I met when he came here to write his novel. He was meditating on the beach, and Riley and I couldn’t resist sitting in front of him. We thought it might be fun to fuck with him, as people do to the guards of Buckingham Palace. He opened his eyes to the two of us making faces and cracked a smile. We got the feeling that he didn’t have a lot of reason to smile lately. Riley and I got to listen to the great heartbreak of his partner leaving him for his best friend, and we both were on the verge of running from being expected to listen to all the things that he could have done to stop it. But instead, he told us how he fucked the best friend before leaving both of them sputtering at how he could do that to them. We liked him, he wasn’t drowning his sorrows, but going on and not letting two assholes make him think he was worthless.


Ben and Riley had a thing, but it ended when they realized they were just fuck buddies who liked each other but didn’t love each other. Ben also wanted to do more than watch Riley surf all day. It’s why Riley and I get along so well, I can find things to do while he practices.


I finished cooking and called Ginger to feed the neighbors. I wasn’t going to have Growly say anything about the way I do things. I mean, if you don’t want to see it, move, or I could use the shade I keep forgetting to pull down. It’s not like I purposely flash people, it’s just this is the first person to live there since Gran, and she diapered my ass, so it was nothing new to her.


At least he wasn’t looking at me as if he wasn’t interested, so it works in the end. Now I just need to get rid of the boner before anybody shows up.


TED


I will admit I’ve been hiding from Michael, who can’t seem to understand that where Brian is, isn’t something I can tell him if I want to work here. Deb has been trying to get Michael to wake up and see that Brian isn’t interested in him, but he insists that Brian is just scared of what he means to him. Emmett is ready to move out because he can’t listen to Michael delude himself anymore. He’s been staying here at my place on and off since it’s the one place Michael doesn’t come that often. I was setting up my computer to video conference when I heard Emmett come in, and knew he’d entertain himself till I was done. He knew most of Brian’s work was confidential until the launch, so he didn’t want Kinney wrath on his head. Cynthia sat down in front of the computer, laughing, then started introducing me to the people at the table. Brian was standing in the background and kept looking at something I couldn’t see.


“Brian he’s sending the food, so the show is over,” Ginger tells him.


Brian came and sat down and started discussing the campaign, then stopped staring into the screen. He was looking behind me, and I turned to see Michael standing there. Michael pushed me out of the way.


“Brian you need to pick up the phone. I know you're scared of what I mean to you, but ignoring it is not going to help.” Michael tells him.


“Michael, you need to go, this is business, not your time to bother Brian!” I yell at him.


“Brian needs to deal with his feelings, and not answering me isn’t going to stop me.” He screeches as the screen goes dead. My phone went off, but I had other things to deal with before Brian rips my ass to shreds for Michael showing up.


“OUT Michael. I don’t have time to deal with you when I’m in the middle of working. Get that through your head. It’s not about you and what you want, it’s about you embarrassing us in front of a major client. Brian isn’t going to thank you for that, and I’m not going to lose my job because you finally managed to get Brian drunk and drugged up enough to trick with you. You ever interrupt my job again I’m going to tell Brian what I saw you do when he wasn’t paying attention.” I tell him.


“What did Michael do?” Emmett asks.


“Nothing. Ted is just pissed because I wanted to talk to Brian.” Michael answers, running out the door.


“Ted, if Michael did something, Brian needs to know,” Emmett tells me, stopping me from leaving the room.


“I was hoping he would tell me what I saw was wrong, but he didn’t. I’m just not sure if it was anything.” I tell him.


“What did you see?” Emmett growls at me.


“I thought Michael put water in the shots to water the drinks down, since Brian was already wasted, but I’m starting to think it wasn’t water,” I tell him.


“Fuck. Was it clear, and did Brian seem to notice it when he drank it?” Emmett asks me.


“No, he didn't notice, but he was too wasted to really taste anything anymore,” I tell him.


“GHB is tasteless and colorless, but it could also have killed Brian. You need to tell him because he likely passed out by the time Michael took him home. Which means, unlike girls, Brian wouldn’t have been up to topping Michael, the way he’s been telling everyone.” Emmett tells me.


“You don’t think Michael might have?” I ask, dreading the answer.


“No. Because Brian would have figured out someone went where no man has gone before. Michael would have cum like a gay virgin in a room full of studs willing to give him his fantasies. It still doesn’t make what he did right.” He told me


“I’ll tell him what I saw. I was just hoping that Michael didn’t do it. Brian will never forgive him for lying to him.” I tell Emmett.


“Michael is the one trying to get something Brian won’t give him. Hiding what you know is not the way to keep the trust Brian gives you.” Emmett tells me.


“It wasn’t that I was hiding it, it was just that I saw it quickly when I was looking around and wasn’t sure what I saw. I was waiting to corner Michael, to see if he’d admit it.” I tell him.


“You got your answer. Now make sure Brian knows his trust isn’t misplaced in you, the way it was with Michael.” Emmett tells me.


BRIAN


Riley and Ginger went to Justin’s to get the food when I shut the conference down. Riley looked at me, then asked if the guy brought me toilet paper too. He didn’t stick around to explain that, but when he came back we were too interested in eating the shish kabob skewers to care.


“He really needs to sell this,” Cynthia tells Ginger, grabbing another one.


“He won’t even let people in the kitchen when he makes it. I’ve spent years trying to figure out the sauce.” Ginger tells her.


“He can’t tell you what he does. He doesn’t have a recipe, he just puts it together and it comes out perfect.” Riley tells us.


“What does he call this?” I ask, actually going for seconds.


“Ginger’s Bobs. She always begs for it.” He tells us, getting up and heading for the door.


“Riley, get your ass back here,” Ginger yells at him.


“Can’t. Justin and I wanted to night surf together. We were watching Jaws and thought it would be fun to not know what would eat us. He said I couldn’t throw any more parties after last night's. Something about condoms falling from the sky.” He tells her, running out the door.


I walked to the back and watched as the two headed out to the water, and really enjoyed the view of the crazy men throwing off their clothes and swimming out on boards. Riley is built, but Justin just seems to make it hard, in more ways than one, to look away.


Chapter 3 by starlight
Author's Notes:

I forgot to mention that Ben was never in Pittsburgh either. 

JUSTIN


I was putting on my shorts when I heard the voice that makes me the happiest.


“Justin Taylor, what are you doing frolicking with Riley. You two are going to get your dicks bitten off, swimming out there at night!” Gran yelled, biting into my Ginger’s Bobs.


“Gran, we were just checking to see if Mermen are real. I mean, a guy who could blow me while I’m surfing is just the perfect man for me.” Riley yells, picking up Gran and spinning her around.


“Put me down before I have my first real orgasm with a man!” She yells.


“I could change that for you.” Riley wiggled his eyebrows.


“Son, you don’t have a clue what to do with pussy.” My dirty-mouthed Gran tells him.


“It’s a strong argument to hit it with a cougar. I’m sure you would rock my world.” He laughs, kissing her cheek before putting her down.


“Sugar, you couldn’t handle this.” She tells him, before hugging me.


“Are you here for a long visit? I would really love a reason to tell Riley to quit using my house to throw raves and orgies.” I joke.


“Honey, I have a man who could do what this gay boy wishes he could, but I’ll be back after the weekend. I wanted to help you get the pre-party ready.” She tells me.


Ever since moving here I throw a yearly bash for the town. They come to see what I plan to cook for everyone and help out Gran and me with setting up. Hopefully Growly won’t be pissed when the whole town shows up for it.


“Molly and Greg are bringing Amelia. Greg wanted to convince me to write Time Bender again. I’ve been thinking about it. I mean, it’s been nice to vacation for a few years, but I really want to do more than piss my new neighbor off.” I tell her.


“Yeah, I’m sure he’s pissed that you give him wood and don’t deliver,” Riley tells me.


“He doesn’t even like me, all I get is growls and smart ass remarks, while he fucks all of Sandcove,” I tell him.


“Maybe it’s because you keep shaking that naked ass at him and then treat him like he isn’t the hot piece he is,” Riley tells me.


“I want to see the eye candy,” Gran tells us.


“He’s next door. Ginger is over there, so you can go torture her while we rinse out the salt.” Riley tells her before I can stop him.


“Hey, Blake said he’d come over, don’t you want to see him?” I yell when she takes off. “I hate you,” I tell Riley.


“No, you don’t. You hate that I got in the house with hot men in it. Come on, let’s get clean before Gran makes me make good on my boast.” He tells me, running to his shower.


I watch Gran knock on the door as if she wasn’t the dirty old woman she is. No one is prepared when they meet her. People see the stylish woman who looks like she so prim and proper, but when she opens her mouth you realize looks are deceiving.


“So I heard that there was a hot, well-hung man here.” I hear her tell the person at the door. I laughed because she’s the best.


BRIAN


Um, what do you say to that? Thanks? I stood looking at a woman who could make Nancy Peterson look like a slob, open her mouth and say something Deb would say.


“GRAN, get in here you dirty old woman.” Ginger shouts running to pick the woman up and hug her.


“I swear, Riley offers to let me show him he could show me the orgasms I hear so much about, and then I get mugged by you.” She tells Ginger, kissing her cheek. “Now which one of these men is the one my grandson wants to take for a spin?” She asks Ginger, eyeing all of us. “Not that one, he’s playing for our side.” She dismisses Murph. “What’s he looking at, Ginger’s ass,” she tells the room, and Murph laid his head on the table. “That one could be it, but you kind of look like someone Justin wouldn’t mind showing his tricks to.” She tells me, eyeing me and then Paul again.


“Brian’s the one I rented your house to,” Ginger tells Gran.


She circled me, then slapped my ass. “Not much of an ass, but then someone has to be the less endowed in that area. But I can see you might beat Justin in this area.” She says as she points at my crotch.


I didn’t need to worry anymore. I doubt I could ever get hard again after being violated by Granny. She noticed the food that was almost gone, before turning back to look at me. “Well, at least he hasn’t written you off yet. I need the entertainment of watching Justin trying to get your attention.” She tells me.


“He got it the minute he decided to dance naked in the kitchen,” I tell her, then wanted to lay my head down next to Murph for blurting that out.


“I’ll make sure he can’t pull the shade down.” She tells me, leaving and saying we needed to do lunch sometime.


“Who was that?” Cynthia asks.


“Gran, or Mitchellson Cosmetic’s owner. Also, Justin’s grandmother.” Ginger seemed to love telling us we met the owner of one of the biggest cosmetics companies.


“Brian, whatever you do, find a way to get Justin to think you're the god all the men in Pittsburgh seems to believe you are,” Cynthia tells me.


“It wouldn’t matter. She makes her decisions based on if she thinks your worth her money. She suggested you, it’s why I called. She told me if I wanted Surfwear to stay small that I could go with the big players in New York, but if I wanted the company to go national that I needed to go with Brian Kinney, a man who knew how to sell ice to Eskimos.” Ginger tells me.


It was at that moment when I knew we made it with Kinnetik, that someone who could have picked someone from New York to head this campaign, told Ginger to go with me. It made me see that New York wasn’t what would have made me in this business. It was me knowing what it took to sell anything. Cynthia came over and patted me on the back.


“It’s why we follow your lead, you didn’t need anyone to make you who you were.” She tells me.


“Justin, isn’t that a bit big for anyone’s ass?” We hear Gran yell.


“Gran, it’s a cucumber, not a dildo,” Justin yells.


“It’s like being at the diner, only Justin isn’t whining,” Cynthia tells me.


Fuck Michael. I honestly didn’t know what to do about everyone witnessing him going off today.


“Gran, we buy our own condoms, I don’t need small,” Riley yells.


“There is bound to be some poor boy who’ll need them. I figured the large and extra large might make anyone with less feel bad.” She yells. I closed the windows because everyone was too busy laughing to get any work done.


“Brian we all have crazy ex’s, let’s just deal with business,” Ginger tells me, to let me know it didn’t bother her.


“He’s not an ex, just an old friend who thinks we were more than we were,” I tell her.


“He’s a nut case who doesn’t understand that you aren’t interested,” Cynthia tells me.


“Yeah, well Justin has those on occasion. Gran just runs them off when they can’t take the blunt way Justin tells them.” Ginger tells us.


EMMETT


I left Ted after telling him to tell Brian what he saw. I went to go see Lindsay and Mel before they left to drop off Gus with Brian. Lindsay opened the door, laughing at someone, and invited me in to find Michael sitting there as if nothing unusual was going on.


“Emmett, why are you just standing there? Michael was telling us that he talked to Brian.” Lindsay tells us.


Brian should have told Lindsay and Mel what happened, but he didn’t, because he was hoping Michael would let it go. Brian needed to realize it only left Lindsay and Mel treating Michael the same as always. It’s just, to me he violated Brian, even if he didn’t do anything to Brian physically. I couldn’t look at him, he wasn’t the person I once knew.


“Lindsay, I actually came to talk to Mel about a contract, I’ll go find her,” I tell her, leaving the room before I yell at Michael.


Mel was putting away a file when I walked in. I fell in the chair, not knowing if I was doing the right thing, telling her about Michael. Brian usually didn’t like anything that could hurt Michael, but at this point, I couldn’t see him being pissed, after what I know.


“You look like someone hit you with a truck.” She tells me.


“I’m angry that a friend violated the trust of someone,” I tell her, not ready to say it.


“That’s understandable, it’s really the worst thing you can do, well there are worse.” She tells me.


“It’s like rape without the actual act,” I tell her.


“That’s a really strong word to use.” She tells me.


“It’s how I view someone drugging someone, then lying about what happened between them,” I tell her.


“Emmett if the person needs legal advice, just tell them to call me.” She tells me.


“I doubt I could get Brian to come to you,” I tell her.


“Brian?” She asks confused.


“I want to tell you, but I also don’t want Brian to kill me for saying anything,” I tell her.


“Give me money, a quarter will do.” She tells me.


I handed her a dollar out of my pocket. “Okay, now whatever you tell me I can’t repeat. Attorney, client privilege.” She tells me.


“Ted thinks that Michael might have put GHB in Brian’s drink. Then took Brian home and pretended that he and Brian fucked. I refuse to say made love. Brian couldn’t remember anything about getting home or what happened when he got there. He woke up the next morning having Michael tell him they finally had sex. It’s why Brian seemed to be everywhere but where Michael was for a while.” I tell her.


“What did Brian say when Ted told him?” She asks, then looks at me like she couldn’t believe we didn’t tell Brian. “Emmett, this isn’t something you should protect Michael from, that shit can kill people. Michael could end up in jail for even having it because it’s made with things that are toxic and the person who drinks it has no idea what could have happened to them.” She tells me.


“We know, but who wants to tell Brian that Michael did that to him,” I tell her.


“Did he do anything else?” She asks me.


“I don’t think so. I mean, trust me, you know when anyone has fucked you, there’s no way to hide that from a guy. I think Michael just played out his fantasies, whatever sick shit he wished for.” I tell her.


Mel rubbed her hands over her face before dropping them. “Tell Ted that I’ll tell Brian. He’ll take it better from me than from you guys.” She tells me.


“Why not let Ted do it?” I ask her.


“Because I’m Brian’s lawyer, and he can tell me if he wants me to do anything about it.” She tells me.


“I didn’t tell you to get you to take care of it. I told you because I’m sure when Brian finds out he isn’t going to want Gus around Michael.” I tell her.


“Not a problem. I don’t want him around my family if that’s what he could do to someone he claims to love. You can leave out the back if you want, it might save me from you kicking his ass in my living room. Although I might need Lindsay to stop me.” She tells me.


“Brian doesn’t know that you like him does he?” I ask her.


“Yeah, he does. We just like to jab at each other, but when it comes down to it we respect each other.” She tells me, leading me out the back.



Chapter 4 by starlight

JUSTIN


I was sitting outside trying to decided if it was time to maybe bring my hero back. I left him jumping into a vortex when he was told his soul mate was the man he’d been running from. I just could never give the villain a face, because he wasn’t really the villain, but the person who the character knew would give him a reason to stop running. I just liked the idea that someone who was wrong for you in so many ways could actually be the right person. I just didn’t want it to end until I could give a face to the character.


The sliding door next door opened and a guy I’ve never seen came out and ran down the stairs towards me. I hadn’t started breakfast, but I was waiting until the sun rose. He came over and introduced himself.


“Hi, I’m Murph.” He tells me.


“Justin. I’m about to start breakfast if you're hungry.” I tell him.


“Before you invite me in, can I tell you I’m a huge fan of Time Bender. I just didn’t want you to have to put up with me geeking out on you.” He tells me.


“It’s cool. I’m glad that people liked my work. Come in and we can talk. Everyone sleeps late around here and I like company.” I tell him, leading him in.


“So you don’t cook naked all the time?” He jokes.


“I forget to pull down the shade, and that Ginger rented Gran’s house. I really never understood why Gran bought it anyway, when she just stays here.” I tell him.


“I think Ginger was hoping Riley would show up if she had the meetings where Riley apparently lives.” He tells me.


“Riley just hates being alone. I get it. I’m waiting for him to tell me that he’s selling his house, so I can tell him no. I don’t need the surfboards all over the house.” I tell him, as I move the one Riley left leaning on the refrigerator.


I grabbed eggs, sausage, and a few vegetables out, handing them to Murph. I was going to have to go shopping if everyone expected to keep eating. The crusts were ready to go, so I mixed everything with cream and poured them into the crusts. I had seven crusts and was debating before just asking.


“How many people are over there?” I ask him absently.


“There are four of us right now, not including Ginger. Brian is picking up his son and the mothers in an hour, so it will be seven in a little while.” He tells me.


“I pulled out all of them and filled them. I grabbed some pancake batter I kept all the time in case kids came over in the morning. Which is why Riley learned to get dressed before running into the kitchen in the morning.


“You don’t have to answer, but why did you stop?” He asked.


“I got tired of working all the time. I would spend days on the computer working graphics and then panels. I was sitting in a dark room one day and realized I hadn’t been outside my house in two weeks. I started out working so I didn’t have to depend on my Gran, but then never stopped to enjoy what I worked so hard for. Time Bender was getting to the point where I either ended it or looked for a way to be able to continue again. I left it in a place that if I ever figured out how it could continue, I had the option to do that. I liked leaving it where people could keep it alive how they thought it should be.” I tell him, making him a cappuccino and starting another one.


“You know people are waiting to see if you’ll return.” He tells me.


“It’s a thought, but I’m still enjoying my life right now. Sandcove keeps me busy.” I tell him, looking out the window to see Brian going to his car. I handed the other cappuccino to Murph and told him to give to Brian.


I laughed when Brian looked puzzled at the coffee. Then he scowled when Murph ran back into my house. He pulled out and left, when Murph came back in.


“He said thanks.” Murph lied.


I was pulling out the first quiche when my back door opened and Tobey came in. I picked up my phone and called his mother, to see if she knew he escaped.


“Tobey just appeared,” I tell her.


“He seems to think he lives with you. I’ll be over to get him.” Denise tells me.


“I’ll make him breakfast, or you’ll be chasing him all day,” I tell her, smiling at my favorite five-year-old.


“Where’s Gran?” Tobey asks.


“Upstairs, go get her.” I tell him.


“Do people just come into your house?” Murph asks, as I grab a banana for Tobey’s pancakes.


“It’s a small town during the winter, so we all hang out together most of the time. Tobey lost his father, so Riley and I try to do what we can. The whole town does, it’s why I never left when I stopped here to vacation.” I tell him.


“Justin, that’s the straight one,” Gran tells me when she brings Tobey in with her.


“I know that he just came to talk,” I tell her.


“Talk is overrated. I thought by now you’d be doing more than shake this in the kitchen.” She tells me, slapping my ass.


“I like it when he dances in the kitchen, I get to eat the good stuff.” Tobey tells her.


Gran patted Murph's back when he started choking. “Honey, get used to it. None of us have any sense of decorum around here.” She tells Murph.


“But we do remember that we have little ears.” I tell her.


“Tobey needs an education, so he doesn’t end up with a stick up…” She stopped when I stuffed a banana in her mouth. “Is this your way of teaching me what to do with Denny tonight?” She smirks.


“Like Justin needs to teach you anything,” Denise tells her, kissing her cheek.


“Or you dear, if what I saw last night when I pulled in is any indication. Did you manage to find the sheriff’s nightstick?” Gran giggles, when Denise laid her head on my shoulder.


“Someday I’ll learn not to try to outsmart her.” Denise tells me. “Find out anything new about yummy next door?” She whispers.


“Justin’s just working on his mating dance before checking out the goods.” Riley tells Denise. “Gran eat it, don’t practice with it, we are trying to keep Tobey’s education at his age level.” Riley tells Gran, taking the molested banana from her and biting over half of it off.


“That explains why men run from you,” Gran tells him.


“I kind of like this house.” Murph tells us.


“If Justin ever lets me put the slide on the roof you’ll love it,” Riley tells me.


“Riley, a giant waterslide to see if you can launch yourself into the surf just sounds like breaking bones you haven’t broken.” I tell him.


“Yeah that would suck.” He tells me, but I can see we’ll be arguing about this again.


BRIAN


Gus came running to me, jumping into my arms. It’s the only thing I hate about being away. Gus is the only reason I haven’t left Pittsburgh. Lindsay hugged me and started walking us to the baggage area.


“We were going to just leave once you got Gus, but Mel said she needed to talk to you. Something about a problem with a contract you sent her.” Lindsay tells me.


“Brian, it’s important for us to take care of it now,” Mel tells me, catching up to us.


Mel gave me the look she does when she needed me to play along. I nodded, but couldn’t think of anything that we’d kept from Lindsay.


“I’m hungry Daddy,” Gus tells me.


“I was told that breakfast would be waiting when we got to my house. My neighbor seems to think it’s his job to feed the world.” I tell them.


We picked up everyone’s bags and got in the car to get to the house.


“How long are you staying?” I asked.


“Mel and I are catching a flight out tomorrow night. We were going to come back for the festival that you told us about, we rented a room at the bed and breakfast so we could take Gus if you were busy.” Lindsay tells me.


“Ted is going to stay at the same place, he said Emmett wanted to come too. Ted will be here tomorrow, he said he was coming early and so is Emmett. Ted’s worried about the contract.” Mel tells me.


“The festival is a big thing here. There’s going to be a lot of events.” I tell them, not understanding why Ted is involved in this.


We got to my house and Gus ran out to the back to see the beach. Lindsay chased him, but he found a kid out in the sand and started talking to him. Lindsay sat next to the mother who was out there.


“This might be easier than I thought. We need to talk because there is something Ted wanted to tell you. I asked to be the one to tell you.” Mel tells me.


I was distracted when Justin came out with a platter and came up to me, smiling at Mel.


“Do you have someone to come out and help? I have two more to give you.” He tells me, turning and going back in. “Never mind, Murph said he’d bring them.” Justin yells at me.


“What was that?” Lindsay asks, looking at the food.


“That was the guy next door, and this is breakfast,” I tell her, handing Mel the platter.


“Oh, I heard you have something against carbs so I made you an egg white omelette with a curry sauce.” Justin tells me, handing me a plate. “Hey, more kids, I need to go make more pancakes.” Justin tells us, as Gus runs up with a kid.


I watched as Gus ran into Justin’s house, and Lindsay went with him, not seeing anything wrong with going over there. Justin took off after them. I stood with a plate in my hand trying to figure out how this happened. Mel tried to get my plate, but I got it out of range. Mel grabbed some food and followed me in the office. She took a bite of the quiche and moaned. I would have said something, but the damn omelette singed my tongue, which meant I was in love.


“My family isn’t that important. I’ll stay and see if I can move in with your neighbor. Lindsay has never been able to make quiche.” Mel jokes.


“What’s going on?” I ask her.


“I don’t even know how to tell you this, it’s not good. Ted thinks, although he can’t prove, that Michael might have put GHB in your drink. I checked to see what we could do, but it’s limited. The bartender said you were drinking heavily and didn’t see anything. No one was willing to tell me who would have sold GHB in the club, they know it would shut them down. If Michael admits it than we have legal recourse, but you waited too long for us to be able to prove when it happened. Brian, if he did this, he could have killed you.” She tells me.


I stopped eating because I was about to be sick. I trusted that fucker and protected him all his life, and he puts that shit in my drink.


“Brian, we could try, but it’s his word against Ted’s, and no real way to prove anything. Unless you can get someone to admit they sold it to him. Babylon didn’t put in cameras because of what goes on in the club, it was to protect the privacy of the people who go there.” She tells me.


“I want him wiped from my life. He is never to get near Gus. NEVER.” I tell her.


“I have to tell Lindsay, so she knows why.” She tells me.


“Do it after you leave, I don’t need her trying to stay to take care of me,” I tell her.


“I also need to tell her what we decided.” She tells me.


“She knew we weren’t going do it. I told you after Gus, that I don’t see having another child.” I tell her.


“You know her, she has to pester us to death. I’ll leave you alone, let me know what you want me to do.” She tells me, leaving.


I couldn’t stay in the house. I changed and started running, trying not to think about what Mel told me. It’s just there were so many things, like the condoms, that bothered me. I almost threw up at the thought of how he managed that. I ended up sitting in the sand next to surfboards, staring at the water, hating Michael for what he did.


“So, like you look like you’re ready to blow something up. Promise not to kick my ass if I sit next to you?” Riley asks.


“I’m not interested.” I sneer, not caring if I lose the account.


“Dude, even if you were, I wouldn’t risk my losing my best friend.” He tells me, sitting at his own risk.


“Justin’s not interested,” I tell him, putting my head on my knees.


“Not in the kind of relationships you have, but he’s not blind to you. Justin seems to have horrible taste in men. Nothing against you, but he brings home assholes then can’t figure out why they’re assholes. Which only makes me question his intelligence. I mean he’s a freaking genius and can’t seem to read people. I mean, put him in front of a computer and there’s no questioning his intelligence, but put him in a club, and he finds the biggest asshole in the room and dates him.” He tells me.


“Do you always talk this much?” I ask.


“I figured you wanted out of your head. I mean, you seemed like you needed to hear the mindlessness I provide Sandcove with. I surf for that.” He tells me, patting the boards stuck in the sand.

 

“Naked no less,” I tell him.


“Justin and I do that when he is keeping me from doing something stupid. We have a group that do it with us, for no real reason. Which I kind of hope you won’t call the cops tomorrow night, because the four of us do it before too many people show up.” He tells me.


“How did you meet Justin?” I ask because Riley is keeping me from thinking.


“I came to see what the waves looked like and saw him. I hadn’t fucked him, so I was interested. We talked and I could see my bachelor life ending, so we became friends. It’s hard not to fall a little in love with him. I think for me, it was that he didn’t take life too seriously, he did that for too long.” He tells me.


“He can afford to not care,” I tell him.


“Dude, no one cares about his money. We like that he fits in here. He brought us Gran, that alone made us love him.” He smiled.


“She’s definitely a character,” I tell him quietly.


“Ever been surfing?” He asks.


“I never went to a beach to surf,” I smirk.


“Let me teach you, it keeps all the bullshit at bay.” He tells me, pulling the boards out of the sand. “Maybe you could help me convince Ginger and Justin the slide would be awesome with your mad selling skills.” He tells me, heading to the water.


I sucked at surfing, but sitting there in the water, my mind was clear. Riley didn’t make a big deal out of it when I didn’t manage to surf but sat next to me giggling.


“What?” I ask.


“Mermen.” He said, before paddling off.


“Blonds.” I thought, catching the next wave.







 

 

Chapter 5 by starlight

JUSTIN


I followed the new people into my house, liking that Tobey made friends with someone his age. It was hard on Tobey that most of the kids were either older or younger than him. Murph put down the platter to say hi to them.


“Hey Lindsay, glad you and Gus made it. With Gus here maybe I can get time to pick Justin’s brain.” He tells her.


“I feel bad that we both just came in here without being invited.” She blushes.


“Honey, everyone comes in here, I was hoping it was the tail Justin’s been waving this at,” Gran tells Lindsay, slapping my ass hard this time.


“Gran, stop, just because he lives next door doesn’t mean it’s some sign,” I tell her.


“Tobey, who’s your handsome friend?” Gran asks, ignoring me.


“I’m Gus, ma’am,” Gus tells her.


“What delightful manners you have, we need to do something about those. You’ll never fit in if you don’t learn to disrespect everyone around. We like it when people make us laugh.” She tells him, smiling.


“Daddy says that he’ll show me how to piss people off one day,” Gus smirks at her.


“I like your Daddy, I’ll have to meet him.” She tells him, kissing his head.


“Brian’s Gus’s dad, Mrs. Mitchellson,” Murph tells her.


“You might have disappointed me by being straight, but don’t be referring to me as anything but Gran. That goes for all of you.” She tells everyone in the room.


“I don’t have a Gran. I have a Deb, but not a Gran.” Gus tells her.


“I have a feeling you’ll have me for a Gran more than by name, sweetie. Yes, I can see it, it’s time to get your education up to date. It’ll have to wait for a day or two, I’m off to see if Denny can show me what Riley thinks he could do.” She tells us, kissing everyone on her way out with only her purse.


“Gran, did you forget your suitcase?” I yell.


“I don’t need anything that isn’t in this purse. I left you some condoms, try to use one or two before I get back.” She yells, getting in her car.


I didn’t even try to explain Gran to Lindsay. She’ll eventually figure out the dirty old woman with a heart of gold. Lindsay seemed more amused than bothered by Gran.


“How are you and Brian getting along?” Lindsay asks.


“Growly and I have an understanding. He growls and I just keep building my art that will win this year.” I crow.


“What art?” Lindsay asks.


“Sand art, if you plan on being in this town you have to understand sand art,” I tell them both seriously.


“Okay,” Lindsay says slowly as if amusing the insane person. I put pancakes in front of the boys. Tobey might have eaten, but he can always eat more.


“Can I have blackberry?” Tobey asks.


I pulled out the syrup Gran and I made after Riley and I got torn up picking all the wild berries from the field. I bought that tract of land when someone suggested building on top of it. I’ve been leaving random fruit out there thinking maybe it would grow there. So far, a pear tree and plum trees are growing. I knew I didn’t have to do all the bullshit you see on gardening shows. Gran said that it domesticated the fruit… and really, I have guest time to get out of my head.


“Is this homemade?” Lindsay asks.


“Gran loves to make things, it’s how I learned to cook. She told me recipes were for people with no imagination. I learned how to make practically anything because the smell of the ingredients compliments each other.” I tell her.


“You used your skill as an artist to cook,” Murph tells me.


“I never thought of it that way, but yeah, it works,” I tell him.


“Justin is the creator of Time Bender, and most of the Graphics and Animation in a lot of hit movies,” Murph tells Lindsay when she looks at him.


“I love Time Bender. Daddy’s friend said it sucked, but he just likes dumb Captain Astro.” Gus tells me.


“Michael never got past his childhood hero,” Lindsay tells me as if she has to apologize for someone not liking my work.


“Captain Astro wasn’t bad. I just hate the way they only hinted at what was obvious. It didn’t help to make it any less obvious because they hid that the character was gay. With Time Bender, it wasn’t about being gay, but I never hid it. It’s why Captain Astro ended, the author was afraid of who he was. We all create by leaving parts of us in what we do.” I tell her.


“It’s true, even though I do ads for campaigns it’s still me in my work,” Murph tells us.


Riley comes in and I hand him his fruit and eggs and a towel. Brian was standing there as if he didn’t know whether to come in, but he needs to get with the program in this town. I handed him a towel. He sat next to Gus, listening to his son tell him everything he wanted to do while here. I liked that he seemed interested in anything his son told him. I stopped because I wasn’t going to have a summer romance.


“Brian said he wanted to come surfing tomorrow night,” Riley tells me, and really, why is fate trying to kill me? I don’t need to see him naked, it just makes it harder to not jump his ass.


“Do you even know how?” Lindsay asks, trying not to laugh.


“He managed to stand for a whole thirty seconds before we came in,” Riley tells her, smiling before laughing at the scowl aimed at him. “Hey, whatever was making you think you needed to blow up my sand got out of your head, I count that as a win.” He tells Brian.


“Not everything I wanted to blow got out of my head,” Brian tells him, looking at me.


EMMETT


I was packing my stuff, ignoring Michael pacing in the living room. He’ll get it when I come back and I’m out of here. I don’t care that nothing Mel and I tried to do last night seemed to get us anywhere. Mel called me after she told Michael to get out, saying she needed to see if she could get someone to give us more than what Ted saw. Right now it would be his word against Michael’s. I was pissed that everyone was more worried about not getting into trouble, and not that what Michael did is how people end up dead or having things done to them against their will. I heard Michael slam the front door and was just happy to have him gone. When I came home, he thought like always that it didn’t matter what he did to us. I finished and put the stuff I could into Ted’s car and started to his place, but turned to go make sure Michael didn’t try to twist his bullshit to Deb and Vic. I won’t let anyone accuse Brian of anything.


I walked in to only find Vic and Rodney in the kitchen cooking. I was thrilled for Vic, he really needed to get back in the dating scene.


“Emmett, come try this,” Vic tells me, handing me a plate of pasta.


I ate a bite. It was great but my appetite has been gone. I put it down, rubbing my face and hoping Brian understood why I was doing this.


“I need to tell you something,” I told them and explained what Michael did.


Vic looked down at the table and I could see he didn’t know how to react to it. Hell, I’m angry but under it all, I don’t understand what could make Michael do something like this.


“Maybe he thought if the deed was done, his belief that Brian would want him would be out there. Michael wants to believe that it’s all that stood in their way.” Vic tells me.


“Vic, that’s a fucked up way to get what you want,” I tell him.


“I didn’t say it wasn’t, I’m just trying to find a way to explain how giving Brian something that could have killed him could have made sense to Michael.” He tells me.


“What!?” I know I wasn’t the only one thinking ‘Fuck me’ when Deb screamed that.


I left it up to Vic to explain because I just didn’t want to think about it anymore. Ted offered to bring me with him, even though I couldn’t afford it. I said yes because I needed to get away from here.


BRIAN


Justin really couldn’t let me go without a hard-on. He left the kitchen saying he needed to clean himself up, but looked over his shoulder at me and licked his lips smirking at me. Lindsay managed to block any way I could follow him and see if I could get him to use that tongue. Riley stood next to me, containing his laughter at all the cockblocking going on.


“Dude, unless you're willing to catch not pitch, you’ll be out of luck. He looks like he would be the catcher, but nope. I mean I’m sure if he trusted someone enough he would, but he likes to control that area.” He whispers.


“Is it okay if Tobey and I go play outside?” Gus asks.


“I’ll come with you, just wait on the steps,” Lindsay tells him.


She waited till they went outside and sat across from me. “Brian, you need to call Michael. He was upset that you didn’t invite him here. With everyone else coming you should have told him to come too. He said you two had a disagreement, but wouldn’t explain. He’s been your friend all your life, you can’t let something silly get between you.” She tells me, not realizing this was not something she could smooth out.


“Worry about someone who fucking matters,” I yelled, walking out of the kitchen and looking for where Justin disappeared to. I was angry and needed something to keep me from exploding with Gus around. I found him in the hallway and pushed him against the wall. He shoved me back against the other wall and attacked my mouth, grinding himself into me then shoved away from me.


“I hope that helps what’s bothering you, but I’m not going to be the one you use to relieve your anger on.” He tells me.


“Then what the hell was what you did?” I ask.


“Showing you what I expect in my men. Not that I see any reason to add you, no matter how much I want to. I want more than to be a trick for someone who won’t be here past the summer.” He tells me, smiling as he goes back to the kitchen, telling Riley he was going to get food.


I walked back in, growling at Murph that we needed to get to work, not play friendly neighbor. Murph left and as I started walking out the door. Justin stopped me.


“Whatever it is, it’s not here, so let Sandcove work its magic.” He tells me.


I crowded him against the door. “The only magic I’ve seen so far is your ability to do this to me,” I whisper in his ear, letting him feel what he does to me.


“You’ve got all the guys of Sandcove for that.” He whispers back, sliding back in the house.


“Jesus, just fuck and get over it you two,” Riley tells us.


“SHUT UP!” Both of us yell at him.


“You know, blue balls is bad for your brain.” He tells Justin, as I was leaving.


“Riley, I can deal with that on my own. I won’t deal with being someone’s summer fling.” I hear, before going to work.


JUSTIN


I was outside, not really doing anything when Blake showed up. I have been wondering where he’d been. Lately, it’s like he’s everywhere but with Riley and me.


“I haven’t seen you lately,” I tell him.


“I needed to deal with something.” He tells me, watching Riley surf.


“You know you can talk to me,” I tell him.


“I know, but it’s hard when it involves one of us.” He tells me.


“You know Riley knows, he just knows he can’t be what you want,” I tell him.


“I know, but I needed a break from him. I needed to know that I could go a day without seeing him and not feel like part of me was missing.” He tells me.


“Did it work?” I ask.


“Yeah, I think I saw something because I wanted more than a guy for the night.” He tells me.


“Even Riley wants more, he just needs someone who can have fun and still rein him in,” I tell him.


“The only problem is that you don’t love him,” Blake tells me.


“I love him, but he doesn’t growl,” I tell him, thinking about the person who does.


“I’ll growl any way you want.” Comes from behind me. I turn as Brian jogs by behind us with Gus and Tobey.


I got up with as much dignity as my hard on allowed and ran into the water diving under. When I came up I stood so Brian could see what he does.


“I like that look, think you could wear it tomorrow night? I’ve heard all sorts of strange things happen under the full moon.” Brian yells from the shore.


I turned and showed him a full moon, then ducked under the water praying the kids weren’t watching. I came up when Riley yanked me.

 

“Blake got the kids to look at him, but you know you’re going to end up with that fling at the rate you two are going. Um, would you mind if I like, hid a camera in your room, I could get hours of spank material with the explosion you two are going to have?” He asks. I shoved him off the board and took off on it.

Chapter 6 by starlight

MEL


I know Brian wanted me to wait, but Lindsay came in, upset that he blew up at her. I took her to the bedroom and explained that what Michael told her was a ‘misunderstanding’, wasn’t that simple. I had to keep ahold of her before she did exactly what Brian didn’t want her to do.


“That piece of shit. Do you realize what that would have done to Gus, much less Brian? Gus would have had to live without his father because fucking Michael can’t get over the fact that Brian didn’t love him the way he wanted. It’s not the end of the goddamn world, you move on and find the person who loves you and you see that what you wanted wasn’t as good as what you have with the person who makes you whole.” She rants.


I couldn’t help smiling at her when she talked about us that way. Lindsay loved Brian and I knew it was more than as a friend, but she loves me more. I wanted us to have another baby, but maybe it’s time for us to do it without involving other people. I looked up to see her packing a bag.


“What are you doing?” I ask her.


“Just making sure we’re ready to go tomorrow. We need to see your family and get back so Brian can work. I want to be here if Michael tries to show up, I’ll show the little shit that he might get away with what he did but I’m not going to let him.” She tells me.


“The flight out isn’t until tomorrow, why not enjoy the day at the beach with our son. Give Brian space, because he needs to not have everyone talking about this.” I tell her.


“Crap, I might have blocked him from enjoying the neighbor.” She tells me, groaning into my shoulder.


“If he wants him, you can’t stop him,” I tell her.


She told me she wanted to change, so I went down to the beach looking for Gus. I found him and Tobey giggling together at Brian, who kept watching said neighbor.


BRIAN


The shit could surf. What can’t he do? I watched as he got to the shore and hopped off the board as if it’s that easy. Then a fucking muscle head comes over and hugs him. I looked down at my chest and I might not have his muscle mass, but I could compete with that. The guy looks over at me and comes over to introduce himself as if he didn’t have his hands all over Justin a minute ago. Am I really acting like this?


“Hi, Justin said you planned to join us tomorrow night. I’m Ben.” He tells me, holding out his hand that touched Justin.


“Brian,” I tell him, letting him shake my hand.


“So, you finally stopped growling at Justin.” He laughs.


Justin started digging around the sand and Tobey and Gus took off to see what he was doing. Justin said something to them and the kids took off into the house, coming out with buckets and shovels. I turned to see Paul and Murph going over there and wanted to ask why they weren’t working, but it might sound strange since I’m out here. Cynthia came out and went over to Mel, and whatever she said to her had Mel running for the house. I went to see what was going on.


“Lindsay took off in a taxi a couple of minutes ago,” Cynthia tells me.


I ran to see why Mel acted like something was wrong. She was on her phone telling Lindsay to call her. I waited until she stopped yelling to ask what was going on.


“I told Lindsay. I know you said to wait, but she didn’t understand why you were so angry. I made the mistake of kicking Michael out while she was upstairs with Gus. I didn’t want to say anything to her until you gave me the okay, so I acted like Michael left because he wanted to, not because I threatened to kick his ass. I don’t know what she’s doing.” She tells me.


“Probably what you didn’t,” I tell her, not caring if Lindsay did what I haven’t had the chance too.


“Brian, I don’t want to bail her ass out. Lindsay was pissed.” She tells me.


“Please, this is Lindsay, she’s most likely just going to bitch him out,” I tell her, walking to my office to call and stop her. I plan to handle Michael, but not until after I come home.


“Hey, I’m just going shopping, tell Mel to quit worrying.” She tells me, hanging up and turning off the phone.


I called Emmett because I have a feeling the shopping is going to be in Pittsburgh.


“Did the girls tell you we were coming early? Teddy said we needed a vacation and my ass needs a tan anyway.” He tells me.


“I talked to Mel. We have a problem that is likely to fly there today.” I tell him, checking to see if any flights out were headed to Pittsburgh.


“Mel and I tried last night to get people to talk. We talked to all of Babylon and anybody around. No one would say anything.” He tells me.


“Thanks for trying, but Lindsay’s on the warpath right now,” I tell him.


“Good. Someone needs to set him straight. He's running around acting like what he did wasn’t a big deal.” Emmett tells me.


“Just keep her from killing him. I plan to do worse, and won't be able to if he's dead.” I tell him, hanging up. I laid my head on my desk, tired of talking about it.


I saw Justin walking into the garage and went to see what he was doing. He was on his hands and knees pulling out boxes. I closed the door and locked it. He needed to understand that nothing about him made me think fling. I stood behind him as he reached to the back of the bottom shelf not realizing I was there with him. He pulled out a box and started taking things out before he turned to see me standing there. I watched as he crawled to me and ran his hands up my legs. He pulled my zipper down and pulled me out, licking the crown of my cock. I ran my hands over his blond hair and stared into his amazing eyes. I closed my eyes when he took me all the way to the root and opened them to see Michael looking at me. I woke up shaking and ran out of my office, trying to figure out where to go. Justin was walking up towards the house and I grabbed his hand and pulled him into my house and straight to my room. I held him just to wipe out that dream.


“Please, just let me do this,” I whisper.


“Whatever it is, it’ll be okay.” He whispers back, holding me tighter.


I held on as he walked us to the bed and laid down. I laid with my back to him and he put his arms around me. It didn’t make me uncomfortable, which it always did when anyone else did it. I could feel that he was affected by being close to me.


“Ignore it, it’s just saying hello.” He jokes.


I turned over and leaned over him. “Why are you so resistant?” I ask him.


“I don’t want you to break my heart. I think you could.” He tells me honestly.


“So could you,” I tell him, kissing him.


I didn’t do more because I didn’t want to turn this into a reason he thought I was only looking for a piece of ass. We stayed intertwined with each other. I had my head on his chest and could smell the ocean on him. He ran his hand through my hair, not saying anything. I fell asleep and didn’t dream. I woke up alone, with a note on the bed.


Brian,


I had to go cook, your son was demanding food and I couldn’t resist the cuteness that is Gus. When you get up I put a chicken avocado Asian wrap in your refrigerator. I’m here if you need to talk.


~Justin


Normally I would treat him like shit because I didn’t like people seeing what he did. I didn’t, because I couldn’t treat what he did for me as anything but him giving a shit about me.


LINDSAY


I got off the plane and managed to slip out of the airport without Emmett catching me. Michael wasn’t going to get away with coming to my house and acting like he gave a shit about Gus when he almost killed my son’s father. I got a taxi and told him to go a block over from Michael’s apartment. I pulled out something that might seem ridiculous, but you know, I just wanted him to have to tell the cops he got beat up by a dildo. Michael wasn’t home so I waited by his building. He came walking up half an hour later.


“Michael,” I called out.


“Lindsay, I thought you and Mel were gone?” He asks me.


“I had to wait, I needed to tell you something,” I tell him, following him into the apartment.


“What?” He asked after closing the door.


I didn’t say anything but hit him with the monster cock that I bought before getting on the plane. It wouldn’t kill him, but it would definitely hurt.


“Fuck Lindsay, what the hell are you doing?” He asks, blocking his face.


“I’m just giving you a cock that won’t care that you’re a worthless piece of shit,” I tell him, swinging again.


I chased him all over the house, smacking him with it. I threw it at him when he locked himself in his room. “Call the cops, I’ll tell them what I just beat your ass with, you know, a cock that can’t say no to you. The way Brian couldn’t when you drugged him with something that could have killed him.” I yell and leave the apartment for the taxi that I told to wait. I was on the flight back when I started to feel better.


JUSTIN


When Brian stood on the deck in the middle of the night, I got up, took off my shirt and pants and grabbed a board. He didn’t even talk, just followed me out. We sat in the water, watching the land while the ocean calmed him. I was in trouble because I realized, unlike Blake, when Brian left, he would take a part of me with him.


He reached his hand out and I took it, thinking that I could at least give the villain a face now.





Chapter 7 by starlight

JUSTIN


Brian and I sat on the beach the whole night, with him telling me about his friends and his life. He would look at me occasionally as if waiting to see if I would ask what caused today. I didn’t, because people questioned me so much about why I left the life I was living.


“Why stop when you were on top? It’s probably something you hate people asking. I just wondered.” He says after we sat for a while silently.


“It wasn’t some big thing, but just wanting to do something different. I stopped having fun, concentrating only on the next job. My father and I parted ways when he couldn’t see that all his bitching and praying for a straight son wasn’t working. Gran let me stay with her when I left my parent’s house. I didn’t want her to feel like I was taking advantage of her, so I started working to make my own way. I wanted to make it so if my mom left my dad, she didn’t have to rely on him. She stayed for the worst reason, for my sister and me. When I left she followed, divorcing him. She told me that my father acting as he did, only meant he didn’t love her, because we were a part of her. Gran was thrilled and made it so my mother could leave with Molly without having to fight my dad. He still believes everything happened because of me. We let him believe what he wants while we live happily.” I tell him.


“A friend roofied me.” He said out of the blue.


“Then he isn’t your friend. You don’t hurt friends.” I tell him.


“I just don’t understand why I’m letting this affect me.” He tells me.


“He took advantage of your trust,” I tell him.


“There isn’t anything I can do about it. No one’s willing to risk trouble to say they sold it to him or that they saw anything. We only figured it out because my CFO saw something, but at the time didn’t know what he was seeing.” He tells me.


“Where did it happen?” I ask him.


“This club, Babylon, that we go to.” He tells me.


“Make them give you the footage,” I tell him.


“According to the owner, there isn’t any footage. The only cameras I’ve seen are the ones that project on the wall of the dance floor. There was something else. When I woke up I found condoms that had been used. I dump the trash every day because I trick a lot.” He tells me.


“It’s a guy right?” I ask, and he nods. “Then you weren’t the only possible person who could fill one,” I tell him.


Brian shivered and I felt bad saying it, but it’s a possibility. It occurred to me what that could mean and I was ready to take a little trip.


“He didn’t. I would know since no one ever has.” He tells me.


We turned to see a cab pull up, and I realized the sun was coming up. Brian and I got up going to our houses. He stopped me before I walked to my house.


“It helped, being with you.” He tells me.


“I’m here if you need someone to listen,” I tell him.


“What if I want more than your ear?” He whispered when he wrapped his arms around me.


I didn’t answer, because I didn’t know how to answer him. When summer was over he’d be leaving and I’d be here. He went in, not waiting for my answer. I started breakfast, yawning and deciding I was going to nap today. Tonight we’d be out all night again, and I really didn’t want to see if it was possible to sleep on a surfboard. Riley came down and took over when I was leaning against the refrigerator. He handed me an energy drink when he saw it was more than tossing everything in the microwave. I chugged it the way I used to when I would work all night then all day. I kept thinking about the cameras the owner is saying don’t exist.


VIC


I stood in Michael’s apartment, staring at him being slapped by Deb every few seconds. Deb was not taking this well. She told me what he did was unforgivable to her. She patched up too many street kids when they wouldn’t go to the police, and offered her shoulder and ear wanting to help any way she could. What Michael did hit too close to that for her. She came unglued on me when I repeated what I said to Emmett. I didn’t say it to excuse Michael, but because it shocked me what he did.


Deb seemed to think the welts he already had weren’t enough and he needed a few more and continued to slap him when he tried to lie to her. She wanted to take him in and make him tell the police what he did. The only problem was getting Michael to admit to it. I noticed something in the garbage and walked over to see what it was, I would have asked why there was a monster-sized hot pink dildo, but Deb was busy yelling.


“Brian protected you all your fucking life and you repay him by putting shit in his drink.” She said, between smacks in the head.


“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” Michael kept answering, trying to dodge her.


“Michael you do realize that any relationship you had with Brian is over. He will never want you around him again. Right now I can barely stand to be near you.” She tells him.


“Why won’t you believe me? Brian wanted us to be together. He was telling me that he wanted more than a trick, that he was tired of never knowing who he was fucking. He was telling me that my wait was over.” He tells her.


“Get some help Michael, because all I hear is you wishing for something that was never going to happen,” Deb tells him, slamming out the door.


“She’ll understand when Brian comes home and we’re together,” Michael mumbles.


“I don’t think you get that she got it from the moment you met Brian. Brian came to her hurt and she healed what she could, and now she’s worried that once again he will carry that haunted look he always had. Deny it all you want, but eventually, someone will talk, it’s a given on Liberty Avenue.” I tell him, watching the worried frown on his face. “You need to be careful who you buy anything from because there is always someone out there who will tell someone else. I’ll eventually find someone who can lead your mother and me to the right person.” I tell him.


“You won’t find anything.” He tells me, opening his door. “Until you and Ma believe in me, I don’t want you coming here.” He tells me.


“Not a problem. Like everyone else, we’re invited to spend time with Brian. Sadly, your invitation got thrown away when you betrayed your best friend.” I tell him.


BRIAN


Lindsay seemed to keep laughing at odd moments. I didn’t ask since she wasn’t trying to mother me. I checked on the campaign and needed a nap. I got to the bedroom but couldn’t sleep, I just kept turning over, trying to find a comfortable position. I knew why, but I didn’t want him to feel like he had to keep taking care of me. I got up and didn’t care anymore what it looked like. I went to his house, seeing everyone eating cereal. Riley pointed up the stairs when I looked around. I went up and opened doors until I found Justin, sitting on his bed with earphones, typing away. I closed the door and pulled off my shirt and shorts and got in bed.


Justin ran his hand up and down my back while typing with one hand. Finally, I was relaxed enough to sleep. I woke up later to find Justin still working on something. He was drinking coffee and I could see cans lining his side table. He didn’t even notice me staring at him. He wore glasses, that really worked for me. I moved closer to him to see lines of letters and numbers running down the screen.


“What are you doing?” I asked him.


“A favor for someone so she’ll do me a favor. She was having a problem with a program and I was looking to see if I could find what was wrong with it.” He tells me, hitting a couple of keys before laying it aside.


“What do you need from her?” I ask, curious.


“Just for her to see if she could check something out for me. She’s good at what she does, but she always wants a favor.” He tells me.


“Sounds like most friendships,” I tell him.


“I hope to meet her someday, she’s just someone I met online when I was trolling.” He tells me.


“So you didn’t erase the net from your life? It sounded that way when Murph talked about you.” I tell him.


“I play, but it’s hard for me to put it down sometimes. You're making it hard for me to not want to play.” He tells me.


“I wasn’t planning to make it easy,” I tell him.


“I don’t do summer flings.” He tells me, leaning over me.


“I might not just want a summer fling. But I might turn into one of the guys you want gone by the end of summer. Why not enjoy it while we can, and worry about Fall when it happens.” I tell him.


Justin kissed down my chest and pulled my underwear down. I kept my eyes open, only closing them when he took me in his mouth. I knew this wasn’t a dream because there was no way I would feel the twirl of his tongue or his hand rubbing over my rim. I tensed because it was new for someone to do anything but rim me. Justin was rubbing circles and then penetrating me with shallow thrusts of his finger. Then letting his saliva lubricate his finger and going further. I ran my fingers through his soft hair as he continued to blow my mind with his mouth. I felt his finger push in and find my prostate, making it hard not to cum as he rubbed it harder. I came anyway and felt him cum on my thigh before pulling back and swallowing when I stopped cumming.


He sat back up and pulled the laptop on his lap as if we hadn’t done anything. He looked at me, I was confused that we weren’t doing anything else.


“You aren’t ready for what I want. When you are I’ll know.” He tells me.


“What if I want more than what you're offering?” I ask.


“I will only give that to the person who I spend my life with.” He tells me.




Chapter 8 by starlight

BRIAN


I went back when I saw Ted and Emmett arrive. I didn’t want to have Emmett quizzing me about why I was over here and not at the house with everyone else. Ted and Emmett followed me when I tilted my head toward my office. Ted seemed resigned that I was going to lay into him. I would, but being with Justin was peaceful.


“Brian, I know I should have said something.” Ted rushes out.


“You didn’t know if you saw anything. I don’t want to spend our time here talking about it. He isn’t going to have a place here.” I tell them.


“I’m planning on working on a tan,” Emmett tells me, leaving the room.


“He’s been all over the place trying to get someone to talk,” Ted tells me.


“I appreciate it, but right now we’re here to work. You need to work with Ginger on the budget and make sure that all the permits for the events have been approved. It shouldn’t take long since the town hosts this event every year. Tonight we are all taking a break and joining in a team building exercise.” I tell him.


“Did you say team building?” Ted asks confused.


I left him in the office and went to see if Murph and Paul were working, not running around playing all day. Gus was outside playing with Tobey, who seems to live at Justin’s house. Emmett sat on a towel with Lindsay and Mel, watching Riley and Ben out surfing. I wanted to go out there too, but I needed to make sure this campaign was a success.


JUSTIN


I woke up a few hours later and went to my kitchen to start getting the steaks and chicken marinating. I pulled a pan of shredded pork out and heated it in the oven, adding the mojo to it. I wanted a little variety with so many people here. I was smashing garlic cloves to sprinkle over the top of the pork when a guy knocked on the door. I waved him in, grabbing the corn I ordered for grilled corn on the cob.

 

“Lindsay told me you didn’t mind company and I followed my nose.” He tells me, as I’m shucking the corn on the table.


“I have an open door policy,” I tell him.


“I’m Emmett Honeycutt.” He tells me.


“Justin. Mind if I talk and cook at the same time?” I ask him.


“I can help, I run an event planning business. My partner Vic is the genius in the kitchen, but I’m pretty good myself. Are you having a party?” He asks, looking at the amount of food being made.


“My friends and I have a pre-festival thing. We eat, get drunk, and surf the night away.” I tell him.


“I’ve never surfed before, it might be fun to try.” He tells me.


“We do it naked,” I tell him, just to warn him.


“The whole town?” He asks.


“My friends and I, but if others want to join in it’s not a problem. The only rule is to have fun.” I tell him.


“It doesn’t matter if we’ve never surfed before?” He asks me.


“Brian can’t surf for shit, but he plans to go with us,” I tell him, distracted when I couldn’t find the blackberries or some of the fruit I ordered.


“Brian. As in Brian next door?” He asks.


“I think Riley talked him into it,” I tell him.


“Thank God you managed to find one that plays on your team. Aren’t you adorable? Too bad Justin would rather take that gorgeous man next door for a few spins.” Gran tells Emmett.


“Why are you here? I thought you were attempting to see if Denny could find your g-spot?” I ask Gran, hugging her.


“I really believe orgasms are a lie guys tell us women, to get off.” She tells me, then grabbed her boobs. “I’m trying to figure out how the man thought these were dials to twist for sound.” She tells me.


“GRAN, you brought me a present.” Riley comes running in with his wet suit half off.


“GRAN, you brought me a present too.” Emmett jokes.


“I saw the boards and had them airbrushed for tonight,” Gran tells Riley. “I could wrap Riley in a bow, but all it takes is pulling this down a couple of inches and you could have a present,” Gran tells Emmett, pulling on the suit.


I looked out at five boards with “Surf Naked” across them. Emmett looked Riley up and down, Riley twirled then inched his suit jokingly.


“What are you doing? Riley could teach you how to do the mating dance. Put down the corn and pay attention. That Brian has a body made for sin, and you need to sin.” Gran tells me.


“I need to get everything ready before I sin. I plan a lot of sinning, are you happy.” I tell her.


“Well let's get this shit done boy. You need to make me proud.” Gran tells me, shoving corn at Riley.


“I need to get some things from the field. They didn’t send all the fruit I need for the fruit salad.” I tell her.


“I can come, and I really need to hear about all your plans to sin with me,” Brian says, smirking.


“Dude, that field just leaves briars in your ass,” Riley tells us.


“Riley, how many times have I told you to use the beach, it makes it easier for me to spy,” Gran tells him.


I left, with Emmett following Brian and I. I stopped and handed them both my beach buckets, the ones the kids like to play with. Brian shoved his at Emmett, who didn’t care. We walked down to the field.


“You had fruit, why do we need to get more?” Brian asks, unsticking the briar that caught his shorts.


“Name one thing I’ve made that has you thinking my fruit salad would be anything ordinary?” I ask him.


That seemed to get him to help pick the blackberries. I pulled a few pears before we left. Emmett took off ahead of us, skipping back to my house.


“You plan to sin with me?” Brian asks me.


“I plan to do all sorts of bad things to you,” I tell him.


I pulled his head to mine and licked his mouth open, tangling my tongue with his. I heard the pears hitting the ground and really didn’t think anyone would miss the pears. Brian and I couldn’t seem to get close enough. My hand traveled down his back and under his waistband. I trailed my hand over his ass and then traced his crease. I started circling his rim when there were claps and whistles behind me. I looked over my shoulder to see signs over their heads.


“Really? How did I only rate an eight?” Brian scowls.


“Son, unless I see penises you don’t get a ten. Although judging from what I do see, you might get the never given before eleven.” Gran tells him, staring at the outline his shorts couldn’t hide.


“Gran, when I have I ever disappointed you?” I joke, picking up the pears that weren’t damaged. “I need to get my salad made,” I tell them.


EMMETT


I really wanted to call Deb and tell her I just met her real mother. Gran is Deb in the future. We came in and Justin took the mountain of blackberries and started washing them while Brian seemed to be busy trying to distract him. Lindsay came in and sat next to me, watching them.


“I’ve never seen him so relaxed.” She whispers.


“When did this happen?” I whisper, waving at Brian stealing a few berries.


“They just seem to follow each other. No one really knows.” She tells me.


Justin pulled out a few heads of lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and jalapenos. I watched as he seemed to have no problem making salsa while Brian seemed to have no problem tasting it when Justin held out a spoon. I got up because the smells in the kitchen were amazing. There were things that I could use in my business. Justin blended the blackberries and raspberries together adding honey to it before putting it in a pot with heavy whipping cream. I wanted to dive in the pot but refrained when he let me try it. People started coming in and out of the house. I’d never seen anything like this before, my hometown would have cookouts, but it was never an open house to anyone who came by. Justin and Gran started telling people what they needed to do. I got the job of helping get the fruit cut up. I tried to keep up with what Justin put in it, he had the berries cooling while teaching Lindsay how to make homemade nachos. Deb is going to love being here.


“Is there any way to get the recipe for some of this?” I ask.


“Nope. It’s all a little of this and a little of that with Justin,” Riley tells me.


I watched as Justin pulled out the yogurt and added vinegar to the cooled berries. He mixed in honey and yogurt but left the berries off saying it’s up to people to put it on. There were tables being set up with kegs of beer and wine. The sheriff had a pot going with seafood. I stood next to Ted, who came out to see what was going on. Two other guys came walking up and Ted couldn’t keep his eyes off the smaller man. The other one was definitely worth looking at, but I was kind of on overload when Riley came running by, chasing Gus and Tobey.


“What is all of this? I thought the festival didn’t start for a few days.” Ted asked Brian, who came out with a huge pan of corn and handed it to Tobey’s mother.


“The town has their own thing beforehand,” Brian tells us, shrugging as if we should know.


“What about the team building thing tonight?” Ted asks to Brian’s back.


“What are you talking about?” I ask.


“Brian said I had to attend something tonight to do with team building.” He tells me.


“I’m all for team building since I have a feeling we are seeing the team,” I tell him waving at Riley and the two others.


“Do you know what we’re doing?” He asks me.


“Darling, you’re going to entertain us, while trying not to get your dicks bitten off,” Gran tells him, walking by.


“What?” Ted asks confused.


“We’re surfing tonight.” I refrained from telling him how.


“Hey, I brought Jaws. It will really set the mood for Naked Surfing.” Riley tells everyone, excited.


I’ve never seen Ted’s eyes show that much fear and interest, but it seems the cutie was looking at Teddy too. Sandcove seems to be the love connection.



Chapter 9 by starlight

JUSTIN


We were all sitting around bullshitting when Lindsay came by with Gus and told Brian that she and Mel needed to leave to catch their flight. Gus sat next to me, poking at my plate. I made him a taco with the pork when he whispered he wanted to try it. He was barely keeping his eyes open, and Cynthia came by and offered to take him in. Brian followed them inside and came out in time to watch us trying to show off for the adults who were still sitting around.


It was finally time to show them what naked surfing really was, a way to keep Riley from thinking up something illegal for us to help him with. Riley and I grabbed the boards, ran to the water, throwing off our clothes, and leapt on our boards. Blake and Ben followed us while the others watched from the shore. Riley and I were parallel to each other, waiting for the right wave. We both started paddling to catch the same one and were up, riding it together. Riley and I were headed at each other and he turned to go up, while I ducked, going under him. Ben and Blake repeated it, barely missing each other. I got back out to find Brian sitting on a board with Emmett, looking at me like we were nuts.


“Why naked?” Emmett asks.


“It kept Riley from running through the town when he saw some article about men running naked through their village every year. Ben, Blake, and I decided this was the best way not to end up with the sheriff arresting our asses.” I tell them.


“You do realize that there is no way I can do what you guys just did,” Emmett tells me.


“It’s about doing what works for you. Riley gets us to help him practice before the competition.” I tell them.


Emmett took off and the board went up, and Emmett went sideways, laughing up a storm. Riley swam out to help him stand up and then stood behind him in the water giving him lessons that seemed to have Emmett giggling.


Ben came by and leapt on Riley, taking him under and coming up in front of Emmett. Then going under when Riley leaped on his back. Riley kissed Emmett when he came up, and hopped on his board to run from Ben, who chased on his board. We watched as Ben tried to tackle Riley when he came surfing by and I took off to help. Blake was closer to the shore trying to help Ted sit on the board. I caught up to Riley and we headed towards Ted, who really could do horror movies playing the screaming girl, we turned in time to miss Ted, who just fell in. Brian came in looking as if he wasn’t going to miss Ted. I took off to catch him and hit his board taking him with me in the water. He came up, coughing up water, and grabbed my face and kissed the laugh right off it. I let us fall back and we ended up kissing underwater while waves went over us. We stood, not letting each other go.


Ben and Blake came surfing around us but I just ignored the catcalls.


Then all of us were on the shore, watching Riley try to show Emmett how to surf.


“You know, that would work better if Emmett could look past the dangling bits,” Gran tells us, throwing towels at us and passing the bottle she had. “Of course, it's the only reason half the town watches tonight.” She adds.


“How did you guys decide this was some tradition?” Ted asks, still embarrassed that none of us were dressed.


“We kind of made it up when the year Riley wanted to flash bingo night at the senior center. Blake and I got Ben to tell Riley that surfing naked cleansed our souls.” I tell him.


“It's true, you shed your old self and let the ocean cleanse you,” Ben said, with a straight face.


“Right, it had nothing to do with wanting to see the treasure trove of dicks and asses. I figured it out because it’s the only way I get to see if there really is a salmi hiding under all that brawn. By the way Brian, you definitely get that eleven.” Gran stares him down.


We all went in to eat again, being out there makes you hungry. I pulled out the pork and reheated it so we could have tacos. The guys were all watching a movie with Gran and I needed to check if Ducky found anything for me. Brian left to check on Gus and came back an hour later. I had taken a shower and pulled my laptop open when he came in.


“I put Gus in the room next door. I didn’t want him waking up without me being there.” He tells me.


“You don’t think he’ll be confused at being somewhere other than where he was when he fell asleep?” I ask.


“He was sitting in the kitchen eating some of the leftovers, complaining that he wanted to play in the water with us too. I told him tomorrow I’d let him play with you guys.” He tells me, laying next to me.


“What was the favor you wanted that has you doing a favor?” He asks, yawning.


“Just needed something done. She’s my go-to for it.” I tell him, as he closes his eyes.


I rubbed his back and he moved closer to me in his sleep. I waited until I was sure he was asleep before answering Ducky.


“What do you want me to do with the video?” She wrote.


“If I send you a ticket, will you bring it to me?”


“I could, but why not just let me send it to you?” She answered.


“I want to meet the girl who could walk in a gay club and hack it,” I answer.


“I could have done it from home, the guy who owns the club has a site. One where the things that most of the guys think are private really aren’t.” She tells me.


“Shut him down. I’ll send you the codes you need.” I tell her.


“So I get to finally meet you, and you know, eat the stuff you tell me about.” She sends.


“I’ll make sure you have anything you want,” I answer her.


“I want the garlic chicken stir fry in the picture you sent me. That was mean when I was too busy doing what you wanted to eat. I got probably more than you asked about, by the way. The owner will be wishing he never installed the cameras everywhere. I’ll let you see it and decide.”


I went and arranged for her to come and sent her the information. I needed to tell Brian what was going on. I just hope he doesn’t get angry that I couldn’t leave it alone.


BRIAN


Justin was laying beside me, and I pulled the blanket lower, running my hand over his back. He opened his eyes and looked at me. I continued mapping every inch of skin, as he moved close enough to kiss me. He pulled back and climbed over me spreading my legs to lay between them. I lifted when he started pulling my sweats off, and kicked them off my legs. His hands were busy massaging my balls and a finger trailed underneath to rub down between my ass cheeks. He reached over to the night table, grabbing the lube, and used it to give his finger a smoother entrance. I tensed, because I’ve never allowed what I know he wants to do. He moved down and started licking up and down my dick and then took my balls in his mouth as he pushed through. I expected pain, but he found my prostate and used it to make me drip cum continuously. He worked a second finger in, and then a third, by then I wanted to feel his dick splitting me open.


“I’ll never hurt you.” He told me, as he put on the condom.


I believed him, and did the things I would tell tricks to do to get over the pain of entry. He slowly pushed in, enough to break through, and for a minute I wanted to stop him. He stroked my belly while thrusting all the way into me. He waited until I was ready, and only pulled back when I opened my eyes. He thrust in, leaning in to take my lips. I moved with him wanting to cum every time he passed the right spot. The only sounds were my soft moans and the slapping sound of his hips meeting my ass. He sped up and used his hand to stimulate my cock. I came in his hand, but he stroked my cock until he finished.


“Are you okay?” He asked, running his hand through my hair.


I nodded, and just let his breathing lull me back to sleep. I woke up later and got dressed, not really knowing what to think about letting someone top me. I opened the door to the room Gus was sleeping in, walking in and sitting next to him, just to watch my son smile at whatever he was dreaming about. It was still early so I left to go back to the room with Justin. His laptop was open and I went to shut it, but curiosity got the better of me when I saw ‘gay club’.

 

He got what no one could, a way to prove what Michael did. I wanted to be angry that he didn’t tell me. I wanted to wake him up and ask who the fuck he thinks he is. I also wanted to find a way to keep this man who cares about me.


“I was planning on telling you what I did. I just didn’t want to say anything until I had something for you.” He whispered.


“Why did you do it?” I asked him.


“Because someone hurt you. That’s all I needed to know to make me do something.” He tells me.

 

I got back in bed, laying my head next to him, knowing that he was the one who could break my heart if I ever let him go.

Chapter 10 by starlight

BRIAN


I was jealous of my own son. He got to play while I had to run all over the place making sure everything was set up correctly. Justin told me he needed to take care of a few things and would be out of reach for a while. Gran followed me around just to see what I was doing.


“Did you wonder why I suggested your company?” She asks.


“You wanted to see an eleven up close.” I joke.


“Of course, it made that orgasm I keep trying to find seem more real.” She outdid me. “I told Ginger, that unlike the firm's I’d been using, the owner of Kinnetik doesn’t throw out what we want, but can see a way to be ahead of the current trends.” She tells me.


I’m a salesman who knows an opportunity when it’s there. “Yet I don’t have your account. Why not, if you think so highly of Kinnetik?” I ask her.


“I was waiting for you to approach me.” She tells me.


“After this summer, maybe I will.” I tell her.


“Hopefully as more than Kinnetik.” She tells me.


“Why do you hope for that?” I ask, most people wouldn’t want a guy who tricks the way I do around their beloved grandson.


“You managed to get Justin to be interested in more than a quick out and in. He sometimes gets involved with people, but he never really invests himself in the relationship. He was doing all sorts of things to get your attention, when it’s normally the other way around for him.” She tells me.


“It was like he didn’t care that I was practically carrying a hard-on around.” I tell her.


“I don’t mind at all that he gives all of that gift.” She cackles. “Justin most likely didn’t realize it. He’s too busy trying to be the best at anything he does.” She tells me.


“What made him like that?” I asked.


“He can’t stop his mind from working. Justin tested high on every IQ test they’ve given him. One doctor that my ex son-in-law took Justin to see after finding out he was gay, was telling him that his son being gay wasn’t a problem, but that Justin needed to find a way to control the noise in his head. There was a time we all thought that Justin was autistic, because he would be so involved in what he was doing that he would forget to do simple things, like to eat or dress. My grandson is an overachiever, who might tell you he didn’t want me to support him, but it was more trying to get all the things in his head out and use them in the way he knew they could work.” She tells me.


“Yet he sold a company that would leave him set for many lifetimes, and stopped a comic that people are dying to see return. All to build sandcastles.” I tell her.


“I think you need to see what he really does. What he’s doing on the beach is only practice.” She tells me.


“What do you mean?” I asks her.


“It’s time to show you what he really does.” She tells me.


I left my guys with instructions and followed Gran to her car. This woman is nothing like you think she is. We were sitting in a 1967 Chevy Impala.


“I really like the car and you know, the hotties from that show.” She explains as she cranks it and blasts me with Taylor Swift.


“I had to stop the heavy metal because I banged my head on the steering wheel too many times.” She tells me, before peeling out.


We managed to get to a part of the beach that was fenced in. She pulled out the key, laughing. “He really thinks no one snoops.” She tells me, unlocking the wooden fence.


We walked in and really I owed Justin a huge apology for calling it playing. It was as if he was building a fantasy world. Each piece was encased in plexiglass.


“I don’t understand the theme.” I tell her.


“Every one of the sculptures represents someone here. Every year there’s a theme to his creation. It seems Time Bender might be coming back with this one. Justin told me he stopped the comic because he couldn’t find a face for the man who would give Time Bender a reason to stop.” She tells me.


I found a case empty in the center. “I guess he’s not finished yet.” I tell her.


“He builds that one last, in front of the crowd who comes to see it. He can’t win for the ones around it because you have to create at the contest. We could open these cases and it wouldn’t destroy them. He uses a mixture to keep them solid. Riley and the guys show up and take these, putting them all over the place so people can find themselves. Every one of them has something for each person, as a gift for welcoming him into their lives.” She tells me.


“He takes care of everyone.” I tell her.


“They never made him feel like he had to do anything but be part of the community.” She tells me, walking out with me.


“This town is unlike any place I’ve seen.” I tell her.


“It’s like any town could be, if they would stop spending all their time distrusting everything. There’s bad things here too, but the people are willing to help their neighbors here.” She tells me.


“It’s a great place to raise a child.” I tell her.


“I think Gus would love to come here to see you.” She tells me.


I didn’t say she was wrong, because Gus would love it here. Not to mention that someone else loves this place.


JUSTIN


I waited at the airport for Ducky to come. I used to imagine she was this geeky girl who turned to computers when people shut her out. I saw a girl come out wearing too big clothes and a beanie, but she didn’t answer when I called to her. I waited while people came out, none looking like what I kind of pictured.


“I think the plane’s empty.” A girl next to me said.


“I was waiting for someone who must have missed the flight.” I tell her, noticing she was rather pretty, but not Brian.


“Why would you think that?” She asks.


“Because I obviously shouldn’t have assumed what you would look like.” I tell her.


“You're shorter than I thought.” She jokes. “Do me a favor and call me Daphne?” She tells me, taking my arm and walking us out.


I waited until we got in the car. “Did you shut the feeds down?” I asked her.


“Yeah. I also made sure the cops knew the man was broadcasting kiddy porn.” She tells me, pulling out a CD to hand to me.


“If that’s on there, I can’t take it.” I tell her.


“I only recorded the stuff you asked for on this. I figured the cops could sort out the rest. The kids were sixteen and seventeen, but it’s still underage as far as the cops are concerned. I heard they were going to raid it tonight.” She tells me.


“Then join in the fun, and have a vacation.” I tell her.


MICHAEL


I was drowning my sorrows at Babylon, looking around for someone. I was tired of the way no one would listen when I tried to explain. After getting him home, he was mumbling how the game was getting boring, that he really wanted to be more than the guy people want to fuck and walk away from.


He was telling me everything I had waited to hear, and my dumb ass ruined it by doing what I did. He was hugging me before passing out, saying maybe it was time to explore a world without tricks. I kept trying to wake him up.


I didn’t do anything to hurt him, why anyone would believe I did really hurt me. I just knew that if I didn’t do something, Brian would wake up pretending he didn’t finally want what I waited for him to want. I didn’t even touch him when I made sure his condoms looked used. I just stood watching him and did what I needed to do, to get us over the block he placed in front of us.


He woke up the next morning not remembering anything, and I tried to make it sound like sleeping together didn’t change us. Waiting for him to tell me it did and he was ready to settle down with me. I should have never listened to Sap when he was telling me the only way Brian would want me was to be out of his mind.


Suddenly, the music stopped and everyone was told to have ID ready to show the police at the door. I got up, confused, but showed them my ID and was told to go by the one checking it. I stood with the others as they were taking a few guys with them and then brought Sap out in handcuffs. We stood looking at the door that was locked, with a closed sign and police tape blocking it.

 

I turned when someone behind me called me by name. He leaned over and whispered in my ear. I ran when I heard what he was saying. I needed to get away and find a way for Brian to understand that everything I did was so he would stop denying his feelings for me.

Chapter 11 by starlight

BRIAN


Justin was spinning a disk around between his fingers, he handed it to me when I came in. I sat next to him, waiting for him to say something about what was on it.


“I didn’t look at it. It’s something only you have the right to say is okay for us to look at. Daphne said it was nothing spectacular. Michael bought it from the owner of the club and didn’t really even try to hide what he was doing.” He tells me.


“He wouldn’t see any reason to,” I tell him.


“What he did could get his ass thrown in jail, but he didn’t think he should hide it?” A girl said, sitting next to me.


“Brian, meet the person who shut down Babylon, Daphne,” Justin tells me.


“I’m just curious why you said he wouldn’t see any reason to hide it?” Daphne asks again.


“If you met him you wouldn’t see the asshole he is,” Emmett tells her.


“He comes off as caring and he’s childlike in the way he carries himself. It’s like Ted seeing what he saw and thinking it was water. His mind excused it because it was Michael, someone who everyone thinks who wouldn’t hurt anyone.” I tell them.


“Those are the assholes you watch the closest. They’re the ones who will rob your house, then come over to help you clean up the mess while consoling you.” Gran tells us.


“I made sure he knew that he wouldn’t be consoling anyone. I also made it so the owner knew it was Michael spiking a drink that put his ass in jail. Even with the disk, Michael can say it was water. I doubt the owner is going to deny what he sold Michael if it gets him any leeway.” Daphne tells us.


“You shut down the club we go to?” Emmett asks from the stove.


“I would have left it alone because kids sneak in clubs and drink underage all the time. It’s just, having things recorded and sent through a site without the consent of any of the people who were recorded messed with my moral code. The sleaze needed to see he couldn’t get away with having feeds of what people thought was private supplementing his income. I sent what the police needed to put the asshole with people who don’t look kindly on a pedophile.” Daphne tells him.


“She also did one other thing,” Justin tells me.


“I just made sure someone told Michael you have proof. The chickenshit ran like his ass was on fire.” She tells us.


“My ass was on fire once, it’s why I quit smoking,” Gran says, out of the blue.


“I could see that,” Daphne tells her.


“I’ll leave this for Mel to look at. Ted’s bringing Deb, Vic, and Rodney from the airport. Deb doesn’t need to see what her son did.” I tell them.


“Deb will probably blame herself for Michael,” Emmett tells us.


“Why would she? Just because she raised him doesn’t mean what he does as a grown adult reflects on to her. I didn’t raise my daughter to love a jackass, but somehow she did.” Gran tells us, grabbing bowls to put the chili she made for us in. Riley ate like he'd been starving, and Gran plopped another in front of him.


“Deb always felt like she had to compensate for Michael being raised without a father,” Emmett tells her.


“He had a father, it’s just he wouldn’t be the one Michael wanted,” Deb said, as she came in through the backdoor with Vic and Rodney.


“Too bad, you could have been fun,” Gran tells Vic.


“Too bad what?” Deb asks her.


“Too bad this one is interested in dick, I wouldn’t have minded taking him for a spin,” Gran tells Deb.


“You should come to Pitts, my dick has friends who wouldn’t mind meeting you,” Deb tells her.


“You and Carl finally talked to each other again?” Emmett asks.


“I went to ask him about what Michael did. He told me unless Brian could prove what Michael gave him, there wasn’t a lot that could be done. He asked me to dinner, and we’re going out when I get back.” She tells us.


“Fuck me!” Riley yelled, grabbing water.


“How much red pepper did you put in this?” Justin asks, taking Gus’s.


I took a bite and it was definitely hot, bordering on ulcer-inducing. I liked it.


“I made Riley’s with a little something extra. Hopefully, it will set his bed on fire, like the six dildos he left on my pillows.” She cackled.


I watch Deb look as if she’s found a lost sister. “Honey, use what won’t ask ‘what's for dinner’ five minutes after a two-minute marathon,” Deb tells her.


“You got two minutes? That’s one more than my last.” Gran laughs.


“I think that's how my son was conceived. Since I didn’t realize we'd started when he seemed to think we were finished.” She tells her.


“No Gran, PLEASE!! I need to keep all my illusions that Mom was an immaculate conception.” Justin smirks.


“At least it would have been an excuse for your grandfather's performance. Let's hope it's not genetic.” Gran tells him.


“Nope, it skipped Justin,” I said without thinking.


“I think you and I need to become better acquainted,” Vic tells him.


“Really, I've always wondered about older men.” Riley flirts.


“Son, I would die a happy man, but still die. Rodney would make sure of it.” Vic jokes.


“While it could be fun, I'm waiting for Gran to let me teach her the secret of O.” Riley wiggled his eyebrows at her.


“Honey, when that happens, I'll know I'm dead,” Gran tells him.


“I wouldn’t mind,” Deb tells him.


“Hey, anybody want to surf?” Riley yells, running out.


“Hopefully the farts from this won't knock him off his board. What he always wants, beans.” Gran tells us.


JUSTIN


I waited until everyone was asleep before leaving the house. I walked down to where my stuff was stored to finish a few little touches I wanted to make on my sculptures. Normally I'm done with it all by now, but Brian’s distracted me lately. I pulled the paints out to shade in on the one for Tobey. I managed to get a picture of his father in all his gear. I wanted Tobey to see his father, the fireman, almost lifelike. It was the only one that didn’t match my theme this year. I just had a feeling it was something Tobey would love seeing, the hero he had in his father. I set up lanterns to be able to see everything.


“I wondered about that one. Gran said they were after Time Bender.” Brian tells me, walking around in the dark.


“They are, it's just that Denise is about to tell Tobey she's marrying the sheriff. Tobey likes him but misses his real dad. To me, this is a way for him to see him.” I tell Brian.


“You love this place. I can see it in the way you made these.” He tells me.


“It gave me a place where I didn’t feel like I had to do anything but things that were fun,” I tell him.


“You could stop the thoughts that were screaming in your head.” He says, watching me.


“They never stop, but they aren’t as loud here. I can sit out in the water and see there are bigger things than the next movie that wants things bigger and better than the last.” I tell him.


“So this is it for you? Staying here?” He asks.


“What are you asking?” I ask him.


“I can’t stay here forever, everything is in Pittsburgh.” He tells me.


“Why are you worried about it now, when we still have time?” I ask him.


“I don’t want you to break my heart.” He tells me.


I put the brush down and turned to look at him going in and out of the light. He stared at the empty case. “Why is this here if you don’t plan to use it.” He asks.


“It’s there because this year I’m using it. I just didn’t know what it was supposed to look like.” I tell him.


“Why not?” He asks.


“I never knew how to put a face to the person who this is supposed to be,” I tell him.


“You found it?” He asks.


“I did. But I don’t know if Time Bender is ready to give up everything for it.’” I tell him.


“Why does he have to give up? Why can’t he continue with someone at his side?” He asks me.


“Good question, I never really thought of it that way. I think I always thought his soul mate would change everything about Time Bender.” I tell him.


“Not if he loved him enough to want to take the journey with him.” He tells me.


“It would change everything about Time Bender. He always worked alone, straightening out the mistakes others did to change time.” I tell him.


“What was in the vortex?” He asks.


“No one ever asked that question,” I tell him.


“I’m asking because, why jump in just to escape, when he could have gone anywhere?” He asks me.


“It was the one place that no one could find him,” I tell him.


“So it was your life. You left it where you left your life.” He tells me.


“Only I didn’t do it to hide. It’s not like people couldn’t find me. I still get calls, but I choose what I do.” I tell him.


“If I asked you to choose to leave here?” He asks.


“If I asked you to stay?” I ask.


“I would.” He tells me, heading to the fence.


“Why?” I ask.


“Love makes you want to give everything to the person.” He tells me, shutting the fence.


I sat there trying to figure it out. Did he just tell me...? I turned off the lanterns and ran to the fence, thinking he left without waiting to see what I would say. I opened the fence and there he stood.


“I would. You’re right, love makes you willing to do all sorts of crazy things.” I tell him.





















Chapter 12 by starlight
Author's Notes:

sorry to not post like normal but summer is my busy season. I have tomorrow off so I'll be able to catch up.

JUSTIN


Brian stayed with me until I finished what I needed to do on Tobey’s father. I planned to work on the last one tonight, but I still had time to finish it. I put my things away, then Brian and I walked back together.


“Why were you working on it tonight?” He asks me.


“You were spending time with your friends who came. Riley was dead to the world, so it was the best time to do something.” I tell him.


“I planned on coming over after everyone went to bed.” He tells me.


We went straight to my room and I went in to wash off the sand. Brian followed me into the shower. I leaned my head back and his lips met mine. I pulled us together so there wasn’t an inch of space separating us, moving together, grinding because we couldn’t stop touching each other. I leaned back under the water, as he kissed my neck and then my chest. He came back up kissing me again. I pushed him against the wall and knelt down until his cock was in front of me. I leaned in, taking him in, putting my hand under his balls and inching my fingers back until they could tease around his rim. I used the heel of my hand to rub his balls, wanting to give him as many sensations as I could. His hand held my head still while he fucked himself in my mouth. I breached his opening, rubbing his prostate with one finger then added another when he moaned.


His movements grew more frantic and I felt him swell, then swallowed until he shivered. I pulled my fingers free and turned off the shower. He followed, letting me dry him off.


Brian moved to the bed and offered himself to me. I grabbed a condom and climbed over him, letting my cock tease his rim before pushing through, he gasped and I waited, pulled back, then pushed into him until seated to the hilt. We both moved to together slowly. It wasn’t a race, but a joining of us. I pulled back and thrust into him, making sure to rub against his prostate. He thrust towards me as I pushed in and we began to move faster when we both needed it. I came a few moments later, holding still until I couldn’t stay in him any longer.


Brian was still hard when I pulled out. I leaned down to lick the cum dripping from the head of his cock. Then I grabbed another condom and put it on him. He stared at me but didn’t stop me when I positioned myself over him.


“It’s been a very long time,” I tell him.


“We don’t have to do this. I want to, but not if you…” He stopped, moaning when I slid my ass slowly down onto him.


“It’s not that I don’t like this, but most guys aren’t very good at it,” I tell him, once I managed to get all of him inside me. “You're bigger than most guys, so take it easy,” I tell him.


“I’m better too.” He tells me, turning me over.


It hurt, and I almost wondered if I could do this. Brian changed the angle so the pain became less and then he moved and the pleasure wiped it out. He leaned over, kissing me as he thrust in, holding still before pulling out and burying himself again. I grabbed his hip and pulled him in because nothing had ever felt this good. He continued, watching my eyes until he was moving faster to reach his own orgasm. He laid on top of me until he finally softened and couldn’t stay in any longer.


He fell asleep soon after and when I tried to get up, he held onto me. I stayed where I was, not being able to sleep. My mind was working in overdrive. I kept seeing he could be right, that the comic didn’t have to end with finding a soul mate.


BRIAN


I woke up, beginning to think that Justin never sleeps. It was barely six in the morning and I could tell breakfast was already made. The door opened and Gus came climbing onto the bed with food in his hand.


“Gran and Deb made breakfast,” Gus tells me eating.


“I can see. Is Justin down there?” I ask him.


“Nope. He said he needed to get something finished.” Gus tells me, crawling off the bed. “Gran said to get your lazy butt out of bed.” He yelled.


I went down the stairs into the restaurant. People were coming in and out, getting food and helping everyone set up the beach with chairs and tables.


“Today is the cookout for the people invading for the festival,” Riley tells me when I looked confused.


Justin came in with Vic, toting large coolers. He walked by then leaned over, kissing me.


“What are you doing?” I ask him.


“Trying out a few things I read online this morning.” He tells me.


“Did you even sleep?” I ask him.


“A little, but today gets hectic if we don’t start early.” He tells me.


I walked over to see what he was doing when they took large pieces of tuna and started dicing it up into cubes. Gran pulled out the peppers that she seemed to have a never-ending supply of. Deb came over, looking wary when Vic told her it was served cold and raw. I was thrilled that for once I saw something that wouldn't be putting five pounds on my ass.


Murph came in with a plate and got food, letting me know that the booths were set up with the video feeds ready to capture the competition. All the people entered in the surf competition agreed to wear suits by Swimwear. My staff had really taken what I wanted and run with it.


I could see the possibility of not having to be in Pittsburgh full time. I wouldn’t worry when Gus was out of my sight because everyone here would watch out for him. I didn’t know if I wanted Justin to leave a place that he loved for a place I barely liked most days. I didn’t even want to go back unless he would be there.


MICHAEL


I got a bus ticket to get out of town. My apartment had been destroyed, and when I ran out a guy grabbed me, telling me that Sapperstein planned to do worse when he found me. I tried to tell the guy I didn’t have anything to do with the police raiding the club. The guy told me a birdie sang in the Sap’s ear and told him the raid was for him selling to me.


I did the only thing I could think of and got the hell out of there. They didn’t have any buses that went directly to Sandcove but could sell me a ticket for a stop four towns away. I got off the bus in a place that could barely be considered a town. I went to see if I could rent a car to get to Sandcove, but the place wasn’t even open. The sign on the door gave directions to the rental place in the next town. I grabbed some snacks and water and started down the road to the next town. Which according to the sign was thirty miles away, I walked as cars passed by, not stopping to see if I needed a ride.

 

I found a motel about two hours later and checked in, hoping to finally see Brian and get him to understand that we belong together. I was sitting with my feet in the pool when a couple came out and talked about driving to see the festival in Sandcove. I mentioned I planned to go but was having to get a rental because my car broke down. They offered to take me. I went to bed, happy that I would soon be closer to Brian.

Chapter 13 by starlight

MICHAEL


The couple, Phillip and Grace, were driving me up the wall. They kept stopping to check out things. I wanted to yell at them that the fucking beach looks the same every time they stopped, asking me to take pictures of them.


“Sorry, we just got married,” Philip tells me.


“We just want pictures to show everyone when we get back home.” She gushes.


“We really didn’t plan to go to Sandcove, but we heard they have a lot of free things you can do there,” Phillip tells me.


“My boyfriend is running the campaign. I should have come with him, but I couldn’t leave town when he did. He’s likely driving all the men crazy, waiting for me to show up. Guys are all jealous that they can’t have him. Hell, even straight guys want him.” I brag.


“Boyfriend?” Phillip asks.


“We’ve been together for years. Well, as friends, but we are moving towards a relationship.” I tell them.


“You’re a sodomite?” Grace asks.


I realized maybe I should have kept my mouth shut. Phillip started smiling at me, and it worried me for a second.


“Grace, it’s not a big deal.” He tells her.


“Sorry, I was just kidding. We should go if we’re going to get to town.” She tells us.


I walked behind them when they walked to the car. I was ready to tell them not to worry, that I could get there on my own. I checked my wallet, and I had enough to get there if I was careful with what I spent. They seemed harmless enough, so I figured I would just ditch them when we got into town. When we got back on the road, I closed my eyes, figuring I could take a nap so they wouldn’t need to bother with me. I woke up when the car stopped and didn’t see anything that looked like the beach.


“We wanted to stop and see a family friend,” Phillip tells me.


“I can find a way to Sandcove, I really wanted to get there today,” I tell him, refraining from sneering at them.


I followed them into the house, hoping it would be a short visit. An older woman came out with drinks, handing them out to each of us. I took it, trying to figure out how to hurry this up.


“I really need to get going,” I tell them, downing the drink and going to the door.


“Now son, we wouldn’t be good hosts if we let you leave.” She tells me.


“Why not?” I ask.


“You most likely won’t make it very far.” She tells me, and I’m feeling kind of weird.


“Don’t worry Michael, they’ll help set you on the right path. Phillip and I were confused like you are...” Was all I heard.


JUSTIN


Brian was calling around to see if he could find someone to work on a problem with the graphics for the screens. I sat there wondering if he remembered there was someone sitting in front of him that could probably help him. Granted I was building a huge mound of sand, and that possibly made him forget what I used to do. Daphne, Ben, and Blake were helping me gather the sand from different places so we didn’t leave a huge crater with the amount of sand I needed.


“He does realize that you and I could do what he wants, right?” Daphne asks me.


“Maybe he doesn’t want to assume you would do it,” Blake tells me, sitting down.


“He might think it would be taking advantage of your relationship. Why not offer to help him.” Ben tells me.


“I didn’t want him to feel like he had to say yes,” I tell him.


“Say yes to what?” Riley asks, dropping his board.


“To helping him with whatever graphics problem he’s having. Just because we’re together doesn’t mean he wants me and Daphne to help him.” I tell him.


“Justin, will you help my company by helping Brian with whatever the hell had me running from Ginger a few minutes ago. She is losing her shit that everything won’t be perfect.” Riley tells me.


“Ginger needs to take a few Xanax. Anybody want to slip them in her drink?” Gran asks us.


“Mother, how many times have I told you, no slipping people drugs.” My mom tells her, laughing.


I got up and ran to my mom. She told me she wasn’t sure if she was coming. “I have so much to tell you,” I tell her.


“How fucking hard is it to get this shit right?” Brian growls into the phone.


“Jen, meet Justin’s boyfriend.” Gran tells her.


“He’s normally much more friendly after getting laid,” Deb tells her.


“I think they switched you and Deb at birth,” Riley tells my mom.


“Brian, come over and meet Justin’s mother, so she doesn’t think you're a foul mouth hooligan,” Gran tells him.


“Trust me, it’s what makes Brian lovable,” Deb tells my mom.


“After being raised by the biggest hooligan on the planet, I’m sure Brian won’t be any worse,” Mom tells her.


“I was dealing with a problem I thought was solved. It’s nice to meet you.” Brian tells my mom.


“You know, Daphne and I could probably help you,” I tell him.


“I know you could, but my team needs to be able to solve these problems. I don’t want us to always have to stay in Pittsburgh.” He tells me.


“I want you to be able to spend time having fun with Gus. Tonight we have to get the statues all over town, so I’ll be busy.” I tell him.


“I let you help if you take a nap with me. Only a nap.” He tells me.


“I need to get everything done,” I tell him.


“Justin, between Deb, Vic, Emmett, and I the cooking is covered. Vic said you told him everything you needed to be marinated, and what he doesn’t know we’ll improvise.” Gran tells me.


“For me, I need a nap after last night,” Brian tells me.


I didn’t need to tell Brian what announcing anything like that would do with the group of pervs in front of us. They all hooted and whistled for us to show them.


“I guess we’re taking a nap. Just show me what the problem is first.” I tell him, yawning.


“It sounds like I need to get to know you. He never gives in this easily.” My mom tells him.


EMMETT


Brian went with Justin when he got finished, and told me to make sure he didn’t wake up to chaos. Jen was sitting in at the table reading a recipe, ignoring Gran.


“How did you end up like your father, needing directions in order to do anything? Even with a road map, he managed to get lost on the road. Don’t even get me started on his total lack of understanding anything to do with the female…”


“I know Mother. How he managed to make me was the mystery of the ages.” Jen tells Gran, interrupting. “You know, the biggest mystery of all is why you stayed with him till the day he died.” She tells her.


“He wasn’t the most exciting man, but your father was dependable and he loved you,” Gran tells her.


“He would have loved everyone but the idiot I married,” Jen tells me.


“Darling, I’m convinced the raiding of your temple by the idiot was to provide me with my wonderful grandchildren,” Gran tells her.


“Um, like I could raid your temple,” Riley tells them when the mood was a bit melancholy.


“Riley do I have to explain to you that you're gay? I can give you the speech in case you need it.” Deb tells him.


“You mean wanting to see if Emmett’s height has any correlation to other parts means I’m gay? Oh God, Gran you have to stop me from my sinful thoughts.” Riley tells them, lunging at me.


“Or sinful actions, not that I plan on stopping you.” I giggled, as Riley’s hands travel lower.


“I could show you, I just don’t want Gran to be jealous,” Riley tells me, pinching my ass before walking out the door.


“One day that boy is going to have to live up to his mouth,” Gran tells me.


“I like that he doesn’t take anything too seriously,” I tell them.


 


Chapter 14 by starlight

JUSTIN


“Why not put the statues in front of each person's house?” Emmett asked.


“Riley got sort of drunk one night and ended up having a four-hour conversation with the Sheriff’s statue we put in front of the police station. Everyone sort of watched the video at every party we threw. The next year after we placed them, Riley moved them all, saying it would be fun for people to run into themselves in places they wouldn’t normally be found.” Blake tells him.


“Yeah, I really thought it would be funny to have the sheriff hiding in the woods where all the kids like to do everything your parents never need to know about. It was funny.” Riley tells them.


“Yeah, but you know, the teens that toilet papered your house thought that was funny too,” I tell him.


“We decided after that to save ourselves the time and change the way we did it. I suggested letting people find themselves.” Ben tells us.


“What’s in the envelopes?” Ted asks.


“Just small things, the one with the sheriff is for his honeymoon. He wanted to go up north and show Denise where he came from. I just gave them an invitation to use my house in Maine. Tobey’s is from the guys who used to work with his dad. They are offering to take Tobey on a ride and show him what his dad did.” I tell them.


“So no expensive trips to Hawaii or anything?” Brian asks.


“While I’m sure everyone would be thrilled with something like that, all of us wanted to be included on the gifts. Which meant they had to be something we could do. Ben told us to think of something people would appreciate more. The senior center likes when we cook dinner for them, so they get invitations to my house when they want to come for dinner. Blake offers nights out where he’ll watch the kids. Ben offers to show up and help people with projects. And Riley, being the lazy ass he is, gives gift certificates for restaurants in town.” I tell them.


“Hey, I also offer to go with them,” Riley says, defending his lazy ass.


“Only if they get the ones for the restaurants you like,” Blake tells him.


“Why do it at all? I mean the prizes.” Emmett asks.


“It’s a way for people to not feel like they owe anyone. Dinner at my house isn’t something people consider out of the ordinary. Ben always helps around town when people need it and Blake is always watching the kids when they’re out where we are. Gran says it just lets people know that we appreciate them watching out for us too.” I tell him.


“So you pick a theme and run with it?” Ted asks.


“Normally the themes center around what Justin’s planning for his sand art. It gives them clues to what he plans.” Riley tells us.


“This year it’s Time Bender,” Blake tells us.


“I need to get the last statue on the beach. Which means all of you need to go find something to do.” I tell them all.


“He never lets us peek.” Riley pouts.


“I want everyone to see it when it’s done,” I tell them, taking off with Brian.


“Wait, you're taking Brian with you?” Riley yells, acting hurt.


“He won’t tell everyone, the way you will,” I yell back.


“Why am I coming with you?” Brian asks.


“Because the box I sealed it up in needs more than just me to lift it,” I tell him.


“I don’t get to see it do I?” He asks me.


“Nope. In fact, I asked that only the judges see me build it this year. Normally I let everyone watch, but for the first time I don’t care if I win.” I tell him.


“What do you win?” He asks me.


“They give cash prizes and they put the winners in the brochures for tourists to see what we do,” I tell him.


“Why do you do it? Because I can’t see you caring about any of that.” He asks me.


“I watched the first competition and thought it looked like something that I could do to relax. I started messing with the sand and found out it was fun too. The kids like helping me dig up everything.” I tell him.


“You like spending time with kids?” He asks me.


“I really do. They show you that life doesn’t have to be complicated.” I tell him.


Brian helped me get the box to the front of my house, and went inside when I asked him to. I pulled open the front of the box and stared at the face that would bring me out of the vortex. I put my hand up to the hand that would be reaching for me when I was finished tomorrow. Then I closed it up and went into the house to the real thing.


BRIAN


I left Justin sleeping, it’s something I know he doesn’t get enough of. I grabbed a cup and made some coffee before sitting outside in the dark, looking at the water. Jen came out and sat beside me.


“It’s really peaceful here, isn’t it?” She asks me.


“I get why Justin likes it here,” I tell her.


“He told me once that it was the first place where he could sleep.” She tells me.


“I noticed he doesn’t tend to do much of that,” I tell her.


“He normally has to be exhausted to sleep. I remember waking up finding that he'd been on his computer all night because he thought up a way to do something he saw in his head. Until it was done he couldn’t stop.” She tells me.


“You don’t sound like it worried you,” I tell her.


“It was hard, trust me, but it’s just a part of what makes him who he is.” She tells me.


“I thought he was just a rich kid with too much time on his hands,” I tell her.


“He was born never having to do anything if he didn’t want to. My mother would have given him or Molly anything if they wanted it. He loves her too much to take advantage of things being handed to him.” She tells me.


“I want him in my life. He makes life more... everything.” I tell her.


“You do the same for him, according to my mother.” She tells me. “I think I’ll get some sleep, but I really just wanted to talk to you without the hooligans around. Goodnight.” She tells me, going in.


I drank the rest of my coffee and went back in. I was actually hungry and this is one place where food was never a problem.


MICHAEL


I woke up, looking around and trying to remember where I was. It hit me like a ton of bricks that they drugged me. I was still dressed in the clothes I wore when I got here. I ran to the door trying to open it but it was locked. I noticed a tray with food and a drink, but I wasn’t touching the shit. As soon as I got out of here I was calling the police, these assholes kidnapped me.


I was in the bathroom when someone came in. The old woman and two guys were standing there when I got out.


“Now Isaac, we need to talk about how to help you.” She says, looking at me.


“My name is Michael. My family and boyfriend are going to be looking for me.” I tell her.


“Isaac, we are here to help you see the way. You were born to love women, not men.” She tells me.


“I’m gay, and nothing will change that I am. I hope you like jail because that’s where you’re going when I get out of here. You can’t drug me and tell me what you want me to feel. I like DICK!” I yell at her.


“You need to see that what we want for you is the right thing for your eternal soul.” She tells me.


“What part of ‘I’M GAY’ are you not understanding?” I ask her.


“Any of it. We were made by God to love the opposite sex, and I’m going to save you from the perversion that your life is. You’ll see what we are doing is what you really want.” She tells me.


“Just because you think you're right doesn’t make it true,” I tell her.


“I'll leave you some reading material. You’ll see that what you’ve been brainwashed to think, isn’t the life you want. We want to offer you a chance to love the right way. Trust me to help you see that you couldn’t love men, but women.” She tells me.


I wanted out of here, so when she handed me the books I threw it at her and the guys. I got to the door but felt a sting and was dragged back to the bed. I looked up at the bitch who was smiling.


“You’ll understand eventually.” She tells me.

 

Chapter 15 by starlight

JUSTIN


Brian was running to get Lindsay and Mel from the airport. Gus begged to stay here with Tobey. I was letting Gus and Tobey help me by bringing water and adding sand. The judges were willing to judge after I finished since they knew my work. I finished in time to go watch Riley compete. He placed second, but Riley just liked being out there with the others more than winning. After the surf competition, everyone watched the fashion show, with the big screens making it look like each model came out of the ocean, and Brian had it so when they walked back, it looked as if they were diving back in. Afterward, people were invited to use the waterslide the models slid down. I lost Gus and Tobey to it. Riley fell in love with Brian when they brought out a floating waterslide he could hurl himself out into the ocean with.


“Ginger was worried Riley would take off. Brian said to get him a slide that wouldn't get Riley killed.” Cynthia tells me.


I found Brian looking at what I did. “What do you think?” I ask.


BRIAN


When the girls and I got back, Mel went to find Gus, and Lindsay followed me.


“He did this with sand?” Lindsay asks, staring.


“Every year since he's been here we all wait to see what he does,” Denise tells us.


Time Bender was coming through the swirling sand, shaped like the vortex. Behind him, you could see the rest of him as if he was pushing through. One hand was clasped in the hand of the statue in front of him as if the statue was helping him come back. I looked at my face on the statue pulling him out. One of the judges handed me an envelope with my name on it. I opened it.


Brian,


This is your invitation to share my life.


Justin


“What do you think?” Justin asks.


I didn’t answer in words. I grabbed him, kissing him deeply, to the cheers of everyone on the beach.


“Pittsburgh doesn’t sound bad when it includes you,” Justin tells me.


“Sandcove sounds better,” I tell him.


“What about…” he started to say before I stopped him.


“We’ll figure it out,” I tell him.


Our group surrounded Justin’s work and had a picnic set up for people to eat. Vic, Deb, and Gran were serving anyone who wanted to try the various dishes. Justin ran in and brought out an ice cream maker for the kids, while Emmett set out toppings, bowls, and cones. Gus and Tobey showed up in time to make cones.


“It's hard to not want to live here,” Lindsay tells me.


“I'm going to,” I tell her.


“What about Kinnetik?” Mel asks.


“Kinnetik can be run without me always being there. When I'm needed it's only a short flight to get there. My team proved they were ready to take on more responsibility by what they did here. I didn’t set out with the idea of staying, but other than Gus, why go back to a life I no longer want?” I ask her.


Lindsay and Mel didn’t need to ask what I wanted, because it was all there in Justin’s creation. I wanted to be the one Justin reached for through life.


As the crowds headed to town, the sheriff came out to talk to us.


“We had a guy show up at the station, claiming he was kidnapped. He asked for you.” He tells me.


“Who?” I ask.


“A guy named Michael Novotny.” He tells me.


“I'm his mother, just lead the way. Brian doesn’t need to deal with my son.” Deb tells him.


“He insisted Brian would want to see him.” He tells us.


“Brian, I need the disc. I think it's time for him to see it. While I'm there I'll see what I can do to keep Michael away from here.” Mel tells me.


“I'll go with you, I think he needs to hear it from me. I left blaming myself for what I thought happened. He won't believe anything until I tell him.” I tell her.


“Do you want me to go with you?” Justin asks.


I wanted to tell him, no, but if he's going to be in my life, I can't start it by leaving him out. “Yes, I do, but I don’t want you to talk to him,” I tell him.


MICHAEL


I was pacing the room I had been held in when two guys unlocked the door. I ran past them and ran out the door. They looked confused but didn’t stop me. I grabbed a bag that looked like mine and ran out of the door. When I stopped to see if my stuff was all in there I found a few wallets and most of my stuff but realized it wasn’t the bag I brought with me. I didn’t care about anything but getting to Sandcove at that point. When I got to Sandcove, I ran into the police station there, telling them what happened to me. They were looking at me like they didn’t believe me and I told them to get Brian, he would believe me.


I went to the bathroom to clean up, and from what I saw in the mirror I looked strung out. I told the officer following me the address to the house I was held in and demanded someone arrest them for what they did. They told me they’d look into it, but I could tell they thought I was some crazed junkie. They left me in an interrogation room while the sheriff went to get Brian. My mother came in with Uncle Vic but I didn’t see Brian.


“Michael why would you come here?” Ma asks.


“Ma, I need someone to help me. These fucking religious nuts offered me a ride then I ended up being drugged while they tried to get me to believe I wasn’t gay. Where’s Brian?” I ask.


“You're asking for Brian when someone supposedly kidnapped you and drugged you? Michael, making up this bullshit isn’t going to have Brian running to forgive you for what you did to him.” Uncle Vic tells me.


“I didn’t make this up. They drugged me and then told me they were the ones who would show me loving men was wrong, and that they knew who I should love.” I tell them.


“Wow, that sounds a lot like what you did to Brian,” Mel tells me, walking in with Brian.


“Why won’t you believe me? I was kidnapped and you all act like I’m making this up. You’ll see when they arrest the people who did it.” I sneer at her. “Brian, I need you to help me,” I tell him.


“If any of that happened, I would think you would realize that the last thing Brian would want to do is help you,” Mel tells me. “I brought you a video to watch, enjoy it. I’m planning to send a copy to Carl and see what he thinks we could do about you.” She tells me, slipping a disc into the player under the TV.


The sheriff came in and watched with us. It was me and the guys at Babylon at first. Brian walked away with some guy and the Sap stood there talking to me. I remember him telling me that a little of the stuff in his vial would have Brian exactly where I wanted him. I paid him and took it, then it was a close up of me pouring it in Brian’s drink, and Ted looking at me for a second and turning back to talk to some guy at the bar. Brian drank it and there was nothing for a few minutes but all of us talking, until Brian started acting strange and I dragged him out the door. I watched, glad there wasn’t any sound.


“That much GHB could have killed your friend.” The Sheriff told me.


I didn’t say anything, because there was no proof of what it was.


“The owner is willing to testify he sold it to Michael. Apparently, he thinks having you in jail with him would be fun.” Mel tells me.


“He’s a proven child pornographer, I doubt he’ll get anyone to believe him.” I tell her.


“Reasonable doubt is a marvelous thing Michael. He’s willing to talk without getting anything for giving testimony. Most of the jury just has to believe you’d do something like that. I’m sure the condoms with your sperm in them will be rather helpful, along with Ted and Emmett explaining how Brian was acting after that particular drink you doctored for him. All that has to happen to get a guilty verdict is making them believe you were so obsessed with Brian that you would do something like that. It would probably save your ass to just admit what you did.” Mel tells me.


“I was kidnapped and you're trying to make it sound like I’m the one in trouble.” I yell at her.


The sheriff went out the door and I saw the old woman standing there talking to the sheriff. She looked at me as if she’d never seen me. “I want her arrested.” I yell.


“I’ve never seen him before.” She tells the sheriff.


“I have witnesses, they’ll tell you what happened.” I tell him.


“Give me their names and I’ll get someone to find them.” The sheriff tells me.


“I don’t know who they were. After they unlocked the door, I just ran with my things.” I tell them.


“My house was robbed last night while I was at church with family. They stole most of our valuables. They fingerprinted my house, so maybe that would help.” She tells the sheriff.


“She’s the one who drugged me and locked me up in her house.” I tell him.


“Why would I do something like that?” She asks me.


“She was trying to convince me I’m not gay.” I tell everyone.


“While it saddens me that you would stray from the Lord's path, I believe you have to find your own way back to his house. I would have been happy to counsel you, but the Lord doesn’t leave me to judge for him. If you were the one who robbed my house, I offer you forgiveness.” She tells me.


“I didn’t rob your house.” I tell her.


“I hate to ask, but that bag looks like my nephew Phillip’s.” She tells the Sheriff.


The officer behind me takes it and pours it out and of course, everyone watched as wallets and jewelry pour out of it. “I thought it was mine, I grabbed it when I was escaping.” I tell them.


The sheriff led the woman away from the room, and a detective came in and started gathering everything before walking out. I kept trying to tell them what happened to me, but no one would listen. Ma, Uncle Vic, and Mel left to find out what was happening, and Brian sat in front of me after they closed the door.


“She’s trying to make it look like I stole from her so she can get away with what she’s doing to people.” I tell him.


“It’s poetic justice when you think about it. How does it feel to have someone drug you and then try to tell you what you feel?” He asks me.


“Brian, you know you love me. It’s always been me.” I tell him.


“You want to know why it was never you who made it to my bed?” He asks.


“I know why. You were waiting until you were ready to settle down. You told me you were tired of the life you’d been living. I only wanted to make it easier for you to see I was ready too.” I tell him.


“I’m ready Michael, but since you’re not someone I could imagine in my bed, it will never be you. I really just came to let you know that if you get out of your current mess, you aren’t welcome in any part of my life. And if you go near Gus, or even come to this town, I’ll make sure you're arrested on the spot. Hopefully, Mel is right, and the Sap will be your new best friend in prison.” He tells me, getting up to leave.


“Brian, I just wanted…”


“I never did, and never will.” He tells me, closing the door.


I waited, hoping he would come back, but he never did. The sheriff told me I was being escorted to the police station in the next town, and being warned that I wasn’t to come back to Sandcove. I couldn’t believe they were trying to say I broke into the house. They led me out in handcuffs with Ma shaking her head at me. I saw Brian leaving with a guy. They were looking at each other like there was no one else in the world.


“Look at the two of them Michael, that’s what Brian looks like when he loves someone. It’s not the way he ever looked at you.” Ma tells me.












Chapter 16 by starlight

JUSTIN


I was sitting in bed, trying to figure out how my naked state hadn’t gotten some action. Brian was on the phone, talking to half the world. He would look at me and lose what he was saying, but then turn around and start back up. I got dressed, figuring I could come back and try when Brian wasn’t attempting to kill someone on the phone, it was actually hot to see, but alas, I wasn’t getting anything out of watching. I picked up my laptop and went to the kitchen to work on Time Bender, figuring Brian will eventually be naked and think there was a reason for this hard on. I really just wanted to distract him from Mikey the wonder idiot. It’s sad when we all sort of thought ‘help the idiot’, Brian wanted to let him go to jail. I just couldn’t bring myself to help someone like him, but the guys were debating, why let the old witch get away too.


The guys were all eating in the kitchen, debating which was worse, crazy religious nuts or Mikey the wonder idiot? I think it’s a tie, but it’s sort of the greater good argument going back and forth with all of them. Deb, Vic, and Mel followed to where Michael was going. Mel wanted to see if she could get Michael to confess, then hopefully get Michael out of one jail for another.


We all knew ‘Little Miss Church Lady’. She spends too much time trying to save our souls. I didn’t know that she included kidnapping in her agenda. It just feels like we are letting her get away with the twisted shit people who believe in conversion therapy do to people. Riley and I were on the fence; it would keep Michael from going to jail for something he didn’t do, but there’s a possibility he would get away with what he did do.


“Maybe I should have hit him harder.” Lindsay mumbles.


“Who?” Emmett asks.


“Michael. I should have beat him so he couldn’t move, or shoved the dildo up his ass so far he couldn’t find it.” She tells us.


“Um, I’d like to hear about anything that includes you, a dildo, and beating,” Riley tells her.


“You need one? You can pick any of the ones Riley keeps leaving in my room.” Gran tells her.


“Shut up. Lindsay is finally getting interesting, tell.” Riley tells her.


“He’s like Emmett, but shorter,” Ted tells us.


“I like Emmett. I’d like Emmett more if he’d just let me sneak into his room. I promise you can take advantage of me.” Riley tells him.


“Hello! Dildo story if you’ll shut up.” Emmett tells them, kissing Riley, who tried to see if he could fuse himself to Emmett.


“I just fucked Michael over with a cock he didn’t have to drug to want him,” Lindsay tells us.


“Why would he do that to Brian?” Ben asks her, changing the subject.


“Why do you think? He wanted what he couldn’t have.” Ted tells him.


“Michael was getting everything he thought a boyfriend would do, except sex, from Brian. Brian wasn’t offering the one thing Michael wanted.” Emmett tells me.


“Sometimes all it takes is seeing what you want, and the truth is a myth,” Gran tells us.


“I dated this guy, he would tell me everything I wanted to hear when we were alone. I got told how much he loved me and how I was everything to him. Then we’d be out and he hit on other guys, telling everyone we weren’t more than friends, and sometimes not even that. I wanted to believe the things he said.” Ben tells us.


“Brian never did anything like that, he really only treated Michael like a friend,” Ted tells him.


“Which means we are once again unsure of what to do,” Riley tells us.


“Why do anything?” Ted asks.


“I’m all for letting someone go to jail for what Michael did, but in a way, he’d be going to jail for being kidnapped, not for what he really did. Instead of going to jail because of his crime, he sits there only knowing he’s innocent and not really learning anything because the punishment isn’t for what he really did. If he was in jail for his crime, he can’t avoid what he did.” Ben tells him.


“Michael doesn’t think he did anything wrong. If it had killed Brian he would have found a way to blame Brian for drinking the shit. He’s not worth saving for any reason. Gus would have had to grow up without a father.” Lindsay tells them.


“Sweetheart, Brian survived. What the boys are trying to say is, regardless of that pitiful excuse for a man, what that crazy bitch did might happen to someone who doesn’t deserve what those assholes do to people for being the way her God made them.” Gran tells her.


“Brian might want Michael punished, but what they are doing is worse and could hurt more people,” I tell her.


“The only problem is, who’s going to believe anything without proof?” Brian says as he walks in.


“You're going to help Michael?” Lindsay asks, appalled at the idea.  


“No, I want to help the kids who end up at in the hands of people like that crazy bitch,” Brian tells her. “If Michael gets away with what he did to me, but I keep people from ever having someone try to tell them how they love is wrong, then I’m okay with that.” He tells us.


“The brick wall we run into is how to prove what she did. When Justin’s father tried this, the only reason he couldn’t was because my daughter brought him to me. Craig wasn’t stupid enough to try to test me. I checked into trying to shut the fuckers down and was told that unless they could prove anything illegal was going on, there was nothing the police could do. Parental consent is a dangerous thing in the wrong hands.” Gran tells us.


“I thought you left on your own?” Brian asks me.


“I did. But he could have dragged me back if I didn’t have my mother help me leave. She only stayed with him after that to make sure that he couldn’t get my sister, Molly.” I tell him.


“It wouldn’t have been a problem if my daughter had told me she was planning to leave the waste of the world’s oxygen supply. I would have helped her, but she said she made this mistake all on her own and she’d clean it up.” Gran tells us.


“You taught me to take care of my own problems, and I did. Craig can’t touch a hair on my children’s heads.” Jen tells Gran. “What brought that up?” She asks us.


“The woman accusing the nitwit of theft tries to pray the gay away. Which, if it was just prayer than no one would care, but it also includes kidnapping and drugging the people she tries to show the right path to. The boys don’t think she should get away with it.” Gran tells us.


“The other problem is, what if Michael just continues to go unpunished for what he did to Brian?” Mom asks us.


“You got it,” Ted tells her.


“Do you think Michael would even believe what he did to Brian was wrong?” She asks us.


“I can offer my opinion, from what I’ve seen since Vic and I started dating.” Rodney, who had stayed silent the whole time, stated.


“Go ahead, because I’m still in the camp of letting Michael burn,” Riley tells us.


“The only thing that Michael would see as punishment would be to lose any way to have Brian in his life. I doubt going to jail for the right crime would get him to learn any more than going to jail for the wrong crime.” Rodney tells us.


“But how do we even prove what she did?” I ask all of them.


“We aren’t going to find the answers sitting here all night. Justin, I think there was a problem you wanted to talk to me about when I was on the phone.” Brian tells me.


“I think I forgot when you were too busy to answer me.” I tease him.


“I remember the answer now.” He tells me, dragging me behind him.


BRIAN


Justin needs to understand that when he’s naked, I know the answer to his question. When I closed and locked the bedroom door he pulled off his shirt and pants and leapt onto the bed. I followed behind him and enjoyed watching him take the question in hand. He stroked himself, laying back. I watched as he ran his other hand up and down his chest, then sucked his finger before running it over his nipple. I leaned down, taking it in my mouth as I ran my hand down him and then helped him by massaging his balls. Trailing kisses down his body and taking him in my mouth had Justin grabbing my hair and slightly pulling as my tongue swirled around him.


He was squirming, trying to pull me off when he was too close. I grabbed a condom and put it on him, crawling over him then sliding him into me. I stilled, waiting for the pain to subside, then moved slowly to get used to him inside me. Justin ran his hands up my thighs then stroked me as I moved. He planted his feet and thrust up as I moved down with him to quicken the pace. Then held me still as he ramped up and came.


I gave him a few moments before I reached for another condom. Raising his legs I rubbed my cock around his rim before thrusting shallow, then all the way. Then began thrusting faster, already stimulated from the first round and ready to cum. He pulled my head towards him licking into my mouth and sliding his tongue in when I opened. I came screaming into the kiss.


“I like the way you always come up with the best answers to my questions.” He whispers, falling asleep.


I like that he could lose himself in me, enough to quiet his thoughts. I fell asleep, knowing he did the same for me.



Chapter 17 by starlight

BRIAN


Justin and I were sitting on the beach. The festival was still going on but we wanted to stay where it was less crowded. Everyone else decided to go look around. Justin and I needed to talk about us; with all the other shit, we hadn’t had time.


He didn’t want me having to rearrange my whole life for him. I wanted us to stay here.


“I can be anywhere.” He tells me.


“Sometimes we'll need to go to Pittsburgh, but I can work from here. I think clients would like coming here for meetings. I could buy the house next door and use it for meetings and a place for them to stay while they’re here. Gran doesn't seem to want to live there.” I tell him.


“She only bought it thinking I might like privacy.” He tells me.


“I don’t want to go back, there's nothing there other than Gus. Lindsay and Mel would love coming here and Gus already loves it here. We can always go there if we want to see him.” I tell Justin.


“You don’t feel like Michael has anything to do with why you want to move away from your friends?” He asks me.


“If nothing happens to Michael, he would end up being a reason to leave, but I didn’t want to stay in Pittsburgh the rest of my life. I’ve always planned to leave there. I once thought I wanted to go to New York because it was where I thought I needed to be to say I made it in advertising. Coming here and finding out that Gran recommended me when she’s used those agencies told me it wasn’t location, but my reputation that made me one of the best. I want to be here because I found the place and the person that quiets my thoughts.” I tell him.


JUSTIN


Brian and I were in the kitchen when the guys came in. They were still trying to figure out any way to get the church lady.


“Did you know that after they convert them they marry them off to each other?” Riley tells us.


“I don’t get it, I tried it once and it took thinking about a guy just to keep it up,” Emmett tells them.


“Ben tried talking to one of the couples. I don’t care what they say, one of the guys checked Ben out.” Daphne tells us.


“I don’t care what you drug me with, I’m gay and it doesn’t change because someone tells me it’s wrong,” I tell them.


“Whatever they did keeps anyone from saying a bad word about them,” Daphne tells them.


“I don’t get it, I sort of looked up some of the things that are done and that’s some twisted shit,” Blake tells me.


“Too bad we can’t undo all the hard work that made them think being gay was wrong,” Emmett tells us.


“Even if we did, what would it do to make them stop doing it?” Riley asks.


“They would be able to file charges if she did the same thing to them. They aren’t minors whose parents could consent. Two of the couples she sent to invite the kids in town to her church were our age.” Ben tells us.


“Convert the converted. Right now you're dealing with the aftermath of being cured from what they now view as a disease. When you recover from a disease, you don’t bad mouth the doctor whose treatment you might have hated at the time, you sing his praises.” Gran tells us.


“How would you even go about undoing what is essentially brainwashing, that apparently started with your family and led to being involved with the old witch?” Emmett asks us.


“I’m sure you boys all had your tricks to land men, just use them to show that being gay isn’t something you can turn on and off.” She tells us.


“Want to go to church tonight? Look at it this way, we put them out of business and hey, maybe she can make Michael’s stay in jail fun.” Riley asks us all.


“They have a meet and greet after church, where they like to work the crowd, answering questions. Get me a person who will talk and I’ll get them to make a statement.” Mel tells us.


“You all make it too complicated,” Daphne tells us.


“What’s your suggestion?” Riley asks her.


“Show up, hang around and see if the assholes have anywhere they don’t want you going in the house. They aren’t going to want anyone accidentally finding anything. They are only having this open house so it looks like they have nothing to hide. We get there and invent a reason for the cops to look where they don’t want anyone to go.” She tells them.

 

 

We’d been there for a couple of hours, being told how we were denying ourselves all the things God wanted for us. Everyone was welcome anywhere on the first floor. The cops showed up at the front door and Church Lady tried to tell them it must have been a prank call.

 

“Hey, a kid told me to go upstairs if I wanted to get stoned. I thought you should have the cops explain to them drugs are bad.” Riley tells the church lady.


“There aren’t any kids in my house.” She tells him, looking worried.


“I saw the bong pipe and want to save the poor souls,” Riley tells her.


The cops went upstairs past her when she tried to stop them. We all made it so she couldn’t leave as we heard more police being called. When they came down and handcuffed her, she told us it wouldn’t save our friend being like us.


“You can try to save him while sitting in the cell next to him,” Brian tells her.


BRIAN


I was driving into town after flying back from a business trip. Gran hired Kinnetik to take over her campaign. It meant me having to be in Pittsburgh more than I had in the last year. Justin had a convention to attend for Time Bender. People were going crazy when they found out the man who Time Bender ran from had been the person who sent Time Bender the messages when the real villains were rewriting time. It helped that he didn’t turn it into a romance comic, the relationship was established, but he wanted the comic to show how the partnership made Time Bender stronger.


Michael didn’t get off as easy as everyone thought he would. He couldn’t prove he was drugged or kept in the house, like the three people the cops found. Church lady wasn't going to add to the kidnapping charges. Michael ended up getting a year in jail and three years of probation that Carl made sure he had to serve in Pittsburgh. Michael tried to get sympathy from all our friends about being kidnapped and drugged. He complained to everyone, saying who knows what might have been done to him when they drugged him. He got doors slammed in his face and Mel slapping a restraining order on him from the whole town of Sandcove. The sheriff wasn’t going to have Michael bothering anyone in this town.


Justin and I made it work when life had us away from Sandcove. When he started feeling the pull to not sleep, but to stay all night up, he flew to where I was and it was all he needed. My business picked up when clients would show up thinking ‘why not get a vacation out of a business trip’. My team came and gave them a reason to hire Kinnetik. Justin didn’t argue anymore about staying in Sandcove affecting my business. He also made it so Gus could visit most weekends and the girls found it easier to take vacations together, knowing Gus was with us in Sandcove. Mel told Justin that they both wanted to eventually move here.


We bought Gran’s house when she started dating again. Telling us that detectives really knew how to get down to business. It didn’t help when she and Deb would want to give each other details, loud enough for all of us to hear. The guys ran to the water, praying for a wave to swallow them.


Riley took Emmett with him to most of his competitions and stayed with him in Pittsburgh, before telling Emmett steel versus ocean was a no brainer. Emmett worked with Ginger on the clothing line, which meant Riley didn’t have to. Ginger told Emmett he was the brother she never had. Riley was just happy not to attend meetings. Emmett found the family he lost when Riley came along. Riley found someone who could let him have fun without trying to kill himself.


Ted and Blake stayed in Pittsburgh so Ted and Cynthia could run Kinnetik. They had a long distance relationship for a couple of months before Ted begged Blake to stay. Blake packed up and headed for Pittsburgh.


Ben sold his book and found moderate success with it. For a while, he talked about it being time to move on and maybe get back into teaching. Justin said Ben felt left out when all of them got in relationships but him. Ben told me he really never meant to stay, it was just a place to heal for him at first, but it became hard to leave a town like this. Paul came to work on an account four months after leaving and Gran rented him a house next door to Ben, saying it worked for me. I understood. I never planned on staying either, until I met the guy next door.

 









 

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