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The Guy Next Door. 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.

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