This story details explicit gay sex between men, teens and boys. If you find this kind of thing distasteful, or if you are underage wherever you live, then stop reading this now, and delete this file. The story is completely fictional; the author does not condone or encourage any of the acts contained herein.



Chapter 68

By: Tim Keppler

 Edited by: Bob Leahy

All told, it takes us fourteen hours to get from San Miguel de Allende to San Jose. It's not an especially-uncomfortable fourteen hours, but it's a long haul. The interesting thing about Mexico is that their ground transportation is amazingly comfortable. Their busses are like riding in the first-class cabin of a 747 -- simply luxurious. They pipe in music, and for long trips (more than a couple of hours) they show a movie. Of course, the movies are in Spanish with no subtitles, but it's a good way to practice your Spanish -- as long as you can stay awake. They're much more comfortable that anything you'll find in North America, which is not something I would have expected.

As we deplane in San Jose, Jason has Kai slung over his shoulder, and I have Kevin slung over mine. Both are sound asleep, and stay asleep throughout the taxi ride home. We pop them into their beds when we get in, and they're none the worse for wear. I'm always amazed and delighted at how deeply these boys sleep. We ferry them from place to place, and they have no interest or clue. They wake up in their beds, and often don't even remember where they've been. Will they remember Mexico tomorrow? Who know? That's the good news.

Kenny and Dinh have beaten us home by hours. I wasn't sure they'd be here, or I would have called and asked them to come pick us up. But, they're tired, so a taxi was probably the better answer anyway. I'm so happy to see them. We all hug, and adjourn to the living room for some tea before collapsing from exhaustion. It's 11:30pm. Kenny is all giggles, talking about trying to get around in Tokyo with little or no Japanese. Some Japanese speak a little Mandarin, or at least can muddle through it, but not many. Language notwithstanding, though, it's clear that he enjoyed himself. Dinh is silent, and sullen.

After ten or fifteen minutes of chatter, most of it between Jason and Kenny in Cantonese, Dinh interjects. "Can we switch to English, please? I'm sick of translating. Maybe Evan would like to participate in this conversation."

Kenny and Jason are taken aback. They look at Evan sheepishly. "Sorry," Kenny says.

Evan looks at Dinh, confused. "It's okay. You guys like to speak Cantonese. That's fine. If it's something you want me to understand, I'm sure you'll switch to English."

"It's rude!" Dinh says, angry.

"English is fine," Jason says, trying to placate Dinh. They continue their conversation in English.

After another ten minutes or so, Jason yawns. "Is it bedtime?" he asks.

"No!" Dinh says. "I want to hear what you guys did."

"How about tomorrow?" Kenny asks. "I'm tired, too. Let's hear about it all tomorrow."

"No!" Dinh says, aggressively. "I want to hear about it tonight."

It's at this point that we all realize what we're dealing with. I get up, kiss Evan on the forehead, and send him to bed, giving him a slight smile. He takes Joaquin's hand and leads him back to the guest bedroom which will soon become his permanent room. They kiss, and pad off to their respective beds.

"Why don't you guys go off to bed, too," I suggest to Jason and Kenny. "I'll be there shortly." They nod, and move off to our bedroom.

That leaves Dinh and me in the living room, sitting on the couches across from each other. Dinh looks sheepish and ashamed. He stares at the carpet in front of his feet. I stare into his face.

"Anything to say?" I ask.

He looks up at me. "I'm sorry," he says softly. "I guess I was being an asshole."

"I guess."

This display has been for my benefit. Dinh is telling me that he missed me. That he missed my attention. What he expects now is that I'll take control, that I'll punish him for the way he's behaved. That's what he wants, what he craves. Dinh is a true submissive. This isn't something he learned from me. He came pre-packaged this way. He yearns to surrender to me, and sometimes that means that he needs to piss me off enough so that I'll take some kind of action that he can surrender to. What he wants more than anything else is for me to cause him pain, because pain is the easiest way for him to submit, for him to prove his subservience. He wants to feel helpless, to feel that he has no control over what happens to his body. To Dinh, helplessness and pain are erotic. They're what he needs to get off. Without an element of pain, he can rarely get excited enough to cum.

But, tonight he really has pissed me off, and I plan to punish him for that. "Down in the basement," I order. "Strip. I'll be there in a few minutes."

I can see the relief in his eyes. I am going to punish him, he concludes happily. He scurries away to the basement to get ready.

After five minutes or so, I make my way down to the basement, and find Dinh standing at the foot of the punishment table, naked, awaiting my arrival. "On the table on your belly," I command. "Spread eagle." I buckle him into place with straps restraining his hands, arms, lower back, thighs, calves and ankles. His dick and balls dangle through a hole in the middle of the table. The only thing he can move is his head, turning it from side to side.

"Your intention tonight was to provoke me. I haven't paid you enough attention this week, so your plan was to force me to punish you here and now. But, you're not in control. I am. So, your punishment will be no punishment. I have no desire to sleep with you tonight, so you'll sleep here. When you stop trying to manipulate me, maybe we can discuss future intimate contact. For the moment, though, this is where you belong." I throw a blanket over his body, and shove a pail under the table where his dick protrudes. If he has to pee, the pail with catch it. I don't plan to be back for him for twelve hours or so.

He starts to beg. "I'm sorry, Tim. I didn't mean to be manipulative. I didn't mean it. Please, Tim, please don't..." I'm up the stairs and out the door. Dinh's fate has been to goad me into taking charge of him, but in a way that gives him no satisfaction, neither physically nor psychologically. We'll see if his attitude changes overnight. In the mean time, I long to have Kenny fuck me. I hope he hasn't fallen asleep yet.

When I get to the bedroom, I find that I'm in luck. The guys are in bed, but chatting and giggling. "Where's Dinh?" Kenny asks when he sees me.

"He's sleeping downstairs tonight. He has his lust to keep him company." The boys nod.

Every now and again, when one of us has had a hard day, we'll ask for sex that's "all about me". Today has been a hard day. I've spent fourteen hours getting home, dragging two little boys along, only to arrive and find that I need to deal with behavior issues. I'm exhausted, but also keyed up. I really want release.

"Guys, can it be `all about me' tonight? I'll make it up to you tomorrow." They both smile at me and nod. I love them so. "Fuck me, Kenny. Please fuck me."

Kenny is normally a bottom. It's what he prefers. But, sometimes I just really need to feel him inside me, and tonight is one of those times. He leans over and kisses me. "Okay," he whispers huskily.

With Kenny on his back, I slick up his dick with lotion and kneel over him, my hole aligned with his dick. I'm upright, which gives Jason access to my dick, and me access to his soft lips. On your mark...get set...go! Suddenly, Kenny thrusts his hips forward and enters me abruptly. There's a moment of really-intense pain that causes me to gasp and scrunch my eyes shut, but as I do, Jason begins to kiss me, and the pain subsides. Kenny begins to undulate his hips, withdrawing his dick almost completely, and then slamming back into me. I arch my back slightly so that with each thrust, Kenny grazes my prostate with the head of his dick. He feels so damned good inside me. At the same time, Jason has begun to stroke my dick while continuing a long and sensuous kiss. Jason has the softest lips of anyone I know. They're not flabby lips, not mooshie. They're firm, but soft, and intensely kissable. We continue like this for several minutes until I finally have to move Jason off my dick. I'm very close, but I want this to last. I'm not ready to cum, yet. I'm very tactile, so Ibegin to explore Jason's body, running my hands down his sides, along his belly, across his chest, tweaking his nipples along the way. He is so smooth, so soft, that my touch alone is nearly enough to get me off. Finally, reaching down to my own dick, I collect some of the lotion that Jason slathered on it, and begin to jerk him off, as we continue our kiss. Soon Jason gasps and begins to blow, taking my dick in his right hand and stroking it while pinching my nipple with his left hand. That's all it takes. As Jason's orgasm begins to subside, mine begins, and Kenny's isn't far behind. I know I've said that sex should be obliterating, that you should basically lose consciousness in the middle of it. This time, though, just as I begin to pump my load, I come back to myself and remember just how much in love I am. I think of the life we share. I think of my children. And then...I scream from the purest ecstasy I think I've ever felt. I am a very lucky man. I don't reflect on that enough.

Once our orgasms subside, I lift myself off Kenny, flip over, and kiss him, hugging him almost painfully tight. "I love you baby," I whisper "Thank you."

"I love you, too, Tim. I missed you this week. Tokyo was pretty dull without you."

We continue to kiss for several minutes. Then I simply lie next to Kenny with my head on his chest, with Jason snuggled up against me, and fall asleep.

The next morning, I awake at 10:15 am. I've taken one more day off from Youth Renewed to recover from our journey, but Kenny and Jason couldn't do this. They've made their way to work already, dropping the boys off at school on the way. I drag myself out of bed, find my robe, and pad off to the kitchen for coffee. Then I head to the living room, and turn on the TV, setting the inputs to the surveillance cameras in the basement. And there is Dinh, his face turned toward the camera, sobbing. His eyes are red and puffy. It looks like he's been crying for some time. As angry as I was with him last night for trying to manipulate me into doing what he wanted me to, I find that my heart has softened. I love Dinh as passionately as I love Kenny and Jason, but it's a different kind of love, and I have to keep reminding myself of that. We all need different things from our relationships, and we depend on those who love us to understand and provide what we need. What Dinh needed last night was pain. He needed release. I refused him that. Instead I gave him helplessness in the only way that would not be fulfilling to him. That doesn't make me feel very good this morning. I need to rescue him and give him what he needs.

I head off to the bathroom for a quick shower. Toweling off, I make my way to the basement. What I must not do is appear to relent. Dinh wants to submit to me. I must appear stern and disapproving, at least until I've "punished" him. Once he's had his pain, then I can kiss and fondle him. Then we can snuggle.

When I reach him, I unbuckle the restraints and tell him to stand up. He does, stretching painfully, still crying. I point to the whipping frame in the corner, a 7' X 4' steel rectangle suspended from the ceiling to which a body can be attached from its four corners by the wrists and ankles. He moves to it and I attach the cuffs, which immobilizie him. He is by now erect, anticipating a flogging. But I'm not going to beat him today. I have something else in mind.

Moving to the counter at the side of the room, I return with two steel rings and a tube of saline lube. I spread the lube on his scrotum, and guide his balls, one at a time, through one of the rings, being careful not to pinch them. The other ring fits tightly around the shaft of his dick just behind the head. Both rings are a tight fit, providing maximum contact with the skin. Returning to the counter at the side of the room, I return with a cable that terminates at one end with two alligator clips, and a small black box, a TENS unit (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulator). I attach a clip to each of the steel rings, and plug the other end of the cable into the black box. By this time Dinh is clearly nervous. He's never seen one of these units, I think, certainly never felt one in action, and while they can be quite erotic, quite stimulating, they can also be quite painful. They're perfectly safe as long as they're never used above the waist, but they don't always feel safe. Depending on how they're adjusted, they can deliver a sensuous tingle or something approximating the sting of a bee. And, because they pulse, it isn't just a single bee. It's a whole swarm -- all stinging the same spot. It'll be like being stung repeatedly, once every second or so. Delivering jolt after jolt of low-voltage electricity to Dinh's dick, this little unit should supply more than enough pain to get him off. It should also make him feel utterly helpless because, restrained as he is, there's nothing he can do to stop this insidious pain (except, of course, ask me to stop -- which he'll never do.)

"Your behavior last night was not acceptable, Dinh," I say, playing the stern disciplinarian. "What's the appropriate response to behavior such as yours?"

"Punishment," he says, dropping his head, looking contrite, playing his role to the hilt.

"Right. Are you ready?"

"Yes, Tim. Please punish me."

I nod. Setting the TENS unit on the floor, I apply lotion to my dick, wipe my hands, and retrieve the unit. "Your dick is going to pay for your attitude last night, Dinh," I say, dramatically. (Honestly, I'm trying really hard to look stern and not laugh at the improvisational script we're creating for this scene, because the scene is important to him. It's important to establishing his feelings of helplessness.) "While it receives punishment, I'm going to fuck you. When I've cum, your punishment will be over, so you might want to think about what you can do to get me off as quickly as you can, assuming, of course, that you find the shocks unpleasant. Let's begin."

I switch on the TENS unit, set the frequency of the jolts to about one per second, and dial up the intensity, starting very low at first, and then quickly increasing it until Dinh's screams fill the basement. As with any sex toy, especially those associated with sadomasochism, it's always good to try them out on yourself before you play with someone else. So, I've tried this configuration on my own dick. The pain is significant, but not by any means unbearable, so his screams make me smile for an instant before I catch myself. Dinh is a screamer, regardless of what form his pain takes. It intensifies the experience for him, I think. Arguably, though, the pain I'm causing him is very different from what I caused myself when I was trying out this device. When I was my own victim, I was in complete control of how extreme the pain got. Here, Dinh has no control and no concept of how bad it can get. So, there's an element of fear here that wasn't present when I did this to myself. He knows, of course, that if it gets too bad, all he has to do is ask me to stop, but that would spoil the scene, and he doesn't want to do that.

Once I have the TENS unit set, I move behind him and enter him in one swift thrust. Then, I begin fucking him in earnest, slamming into his ass with a vengeance, adjusting my angle so that I graze his prostate with each thrust. He continues to shriek as each jolt of electricity hits him, and I try to adjust my rhythm to the rhythm of the jolts, trying to hit his prostate just as each new jolt begins.

"Oh, god, Tim...please...please..."

After nearly ten minutes of this, ten minutes during which Dinh continues to scream and writhe, I feel him suddenly stiffen and tighten his sphincter muscles. He cums in waves, in one of the longest orgasms I've ever witnessed. As he does, he pushes me over the edge, and I match him shot for shot, filling his ass with my spunk. When I'm done, when I'm spent, I turn off the TENS unit and pull out of him, moving to his side. He is slumped forward, dangling from his wrists, and absolutely soaked in sweat. His eyes are closed. He seems exhausted.

I remove the cables and stow the TENS unit, and then remove the steel rings from his dick and balls. Then I release him, and carry him to the chair in the corner where we sit and cuddle. After maybe fifteen minutes of hugging, fifteen minutes during which he seems dazed, he finally looks into my eyes with something like consciousness. "That was amazing!" he exclaims. "It was just... I don't even know how... I have no idea what..."

"Was it too much?"

"Too much?" he responds, thinking. "It was really intense, really, really intense. The pain just kept coming, over and over again. I thought it would never end. I felt so helpless, so completely at your mercy. Too much? I don't think so. I've never cum so hard in my life."

"Would you want to do it again?"

"Want to? I don't know how to answer that. If I were to say yes, I'd seem really twisted, wouldn't I?"

"Why twisted?"

"Well, I'd be admitting just how intensely I crave pain."

"Do you?"

Dinh nods slowly, looking a little...ashamed.

"Why is that twisted?"

"Well, it's not normal, is it?"

"Who cares? Who knows what normal is? Being attracted to other men isn't `normal' either, is it? Only five to ten percent of men are. If normal means what the majority of the population of the earth does, then we're already pretty abnormal. But, at the end of the day, do you really know what Mr. and Mrs. Middle-America do in the privacy of their bedroom? As long as it's consensual, it's no one's business but ours. If it's what you want, and if I'm comfortable doing it. That's all that matters."

"Well, then I guess I can say definitively that I want to do it again," he says, hugging me. Then he seals his lips to mine and we kiss for maybe ten minutes, a kiss that revives me, making me hard again. Dinh doesn't miss a beat. Breaking the kiss, he slides off my lap, and takes me in his mouth, sucking me with a vengeance while fingering my hole. Then, sliding his index finger inside me, he searches for my secret spot. When he finds it, he begins to stroke it, driving me nearly out of my mind and into a second very-intense orgasm.

"Thank you baby," I pant, recovering myself at last. "That felt so good! Maybe we should hose off."

There's a stall shower down here, and we both jump in, letting the warm water pour over us and wash away what seems like gallons of cum that coat us. Toweling off, we make our way back upstairs to get dressed, finding Evan and Joaquin in the kitchen as we emerge from the basement. Evan smiles at us, but Joaquin flushes a deep crimson as Dinh and I stand before him, naked. Evan giggles, and kisses him on the cheek. "This isn't all that unusual," he tells Joaquin in Spanish. "You'll get used to it." Joaquin nods slowly as we continue toward the bedroom. If he's going to be staying with us for a while, it's probably best to set Joaquin's perceptions about who we are quickly. This can be his first lesson.


On Friday, three days after our return from Mexico, Jason and I take Joaquin to San Francisco for his audition with Michael Tilson Thomas, conductor of the San Francisco Symphony. I'm to be the interpreter today because Evan is in school and I don't want him missing it for this. Joaquin seems a little nervous, but denies it when I ask him. He'll be fine, he says. He and Jason have agreed that they'll play the Carulli sonata for piano and guitar that they played in San Miguel. Then Joaquin will play some short pieces by Joaquin Rodrigo, the Spanish composer, as well as some traditional flamenco pieces, pieces that he knows well. Jason warns him that Tilson Thomas is likely to ask him to learn a new piece on the spot and to play it. Joaquin shrugs. "I can do that. No problem."

When we arrive, there's no waiting to see Tilson Thomas. He is so excited about this audition that he was willing to cancel other appointments to make it happen quickly. The Symphony has been looking for a classical guitarist for years. They're few and far between, and even when you find one, their musicianship is often marginal. Most are self-taught, and many can't even read music. The fact that Joaquin has been pre-screened by Jason tells Tilson Thomas that he probably has a winner, and if that's true, he's anxious to close the deal.

Tilson Thomas begins the audition with a series of questions. He wants to know where Joaquin was born, how he learned to play the guitar, and what experience he's had in front of the public. He wants to know what his repertoire includes, who his musical heroes are, what composers he's familiar with, and a host of other queries that, all told, take thirty minutes to answer. Joaquin is a little put off. He's rather shy, but answers every question he's asked slowly and methodically. Finally, Tilson Thomas is ready to hear him play. Joaquin takes out his guitar, and begins to play a Rodrigo sonata. But after only two bars, Tilson Thomas stops him. "I'm sorry," he says, "the guitar is awful." He asks his assistant to go and get the Martin. The assistant leaves the room, returning in five minutes with another guitar. This he hands to Joaquin, taking his guitar and leaning it in a corner. "I know this isn't fair," Tilson Thomas says. "You aren't familiar with this instrument. I will understand if your pacing suffers a little as a result of playing this instrument."

Joaquin begins to tune the instrument, and as he plucks the strings, he is astonished by the timber. You can see the amazement in his eyes. Later I learn that this guitar is a recent bequest from a wealthy patron of the symphony -- and is insured for $4 million.

He begins the Rodrigo piece again, and the expression on his face is one of pure joy. I don't think he's ever heard anything that sounds quite like this instrument. Maybe two minutes into the piece, he lays his head on the top of the guitar and closes his eyes. He has crossed over into another world and is present here as pure energy alone.

He plays for 40 minutes. He plays a mixed repertoire of modern and classical pieces. He plays flamenco. And he plays Carulli with Jason on the piano. Tilson Thomas sits in front of him, leaning back in his chair, eyes closed, a soft smile playing across his lips. Me? I'm a mess. I've moved to the back of the room because I just can't stop crying. Tilson Thomas knows me, after all this time. He knows what good music does to me. He gave me an indulgent smile as Joaquin started to play, and motioned me to move to a seat behind him. This boy can seriously play!

When Jason and Joaquin finish the Carulli, Tilson Thomas pulls several pages of sheet music from a folder he's holding, and hands them to Joaquin. "Play that," he says. "Do it now."

Joaquin takes about thirty seconds to scan the pages, looking momentarily confused, and then he looks at Jason. "Can you turn the pages for me?" he asks in Spanish. I translate, and Jason goes and sits beside him. Then he begins to play. This piece is a motherfucker. It is dissonant and rhythmically nearly impossible. It is, I realize, a final exam. If Joaquin can play this credibly, sight unseen, he can play anything. That's what Tilson Thomas is trying to establish. The piece takes five minutes, and even Jason is surprised by the complexity of the thing. When Joaquin gets to the end of it, he stops and looks up, disoriented.

"Who wrote this?" Jason asks.

"I did," Tilson Thomas replies. "Last night, over dinner. It's pretty awful, isn't it?"

Jason smiles and nods. "Umm...yeah."

Tilson Thomas laughs. "I wanted to see what he'd do with it. How do you think he did?" All this I've been translating, so Joaquin knows what's going on.

"Well, he didn't play it verbatim did he," Jason says, moving to the piano, sheet music in hand. "If he had, bars 34 through 46 would have sounded like this," he says, playing them on the piano. "Instead, he played them like this," he says, playing them again, as Joaquin had played them, softening considerably the jarring rhythms. "He improved it, didn't he?"

"He did, yes," Tilson Thomas responded. "That's not necessarily a good thing. It suggests that he's not really comfortable with something that's truly modern. What would he do with Stravinsky? But, he didn't have a conductor dictating his interpretation, either. I didn't tell him how to play it, I just told him to do it. And he did, and for a piece of music he'd never seen or heard before, a piece of music well outside his comfort zone, I'd say he did a damned good job. Should we hire him?"

Jason purses his lips, and nods. "Yup."

Tilson Thomas nods back. "I agree." Motioning to his assistant, he tells him to get HR to hire Joaquin as an associate musician, a position that pays between $38 thousand to $46 thousand a year. The actual offer comes in at $42 thousand.

"¿Cuánto está ése en pesos?" he asks me. "How many pesos is that?"

In the current state of the Mexican economy, the answer should probably be "todos - all of them," but it's not fair to joke with Joaquin right now, so I do a quick calculation, and reply seriously. "About $630,000 pesos." His jaw drops. He is absolutely stunned. "Careful, Joaquin," I caution in Spanish. "Things are a lot more expensive here than in Mexico."


He nods, but is still astounded.


When we get home, Evan is home from school, and Joaquin runs to him, hugging him tight, and relating the days events in Spanish so rapid-fire that I have no idea what he's saying. Apparently Evan doesn't either, because he has to keep telling him to slow down. Finally, the story gets told, and Evan starts to jump up and down much as Kai would, faced with shatteringly-wonderful news. He hugs Joaquin, and Joaquin kisses him. Then they're jumping up and down together. Finally, Joaquin tells him about the guitar he played, the $4 million guitar, the guitar that will be his when he plays for the Symphony. I relay the conversation to Jason, who giggles. "Yeah," he says to Evan, "they didn't like my violin either. The symphony bought me a violin for $7 million. It's not a Strad. Actually, it has better sound than a Strad, but is only two years old. Tilson Thomas is very picky about the sound of the instruments. I picked the violin I play, but I had to audition it for him before the Symphony management would authorize its purchase. Michael is just very picky about sound."


"So, Joaquin," I say in Spanish, "I think we need to get you some English lessons."


"Si," he says, emphatically.


"I'll work on that tomorrow," I assure him.


"Señor Tim. I would like to speak with you privately," he says in Spanish. "Is there somewhere we can talk?"


I nod, a little apprehensively. I have my suspicions where this conversation is headed, especially when I see Evan glancing at me surreptitiously, but I decide to let it play out. I take Joaquin to the office, and motion for him to sit in one of the chairs in front of the desk. I sit in the other one. I look at him quizzically, and wait.


"I think I have fallen in love with Evan."


"¿Si?" I reply.


"And, I would like to...umm...make love to him."


I can feel my eyes narrow. "You say you `think' you have fallen in love with him. You do not know?"


"I am sorry. A figure of speech. I have fallen in love with him."


"In less than two weeks you have fallen in love?"




"Why? How? What have you fallen in love with? How do you fall in love in less than two weeks?"


"I do not know," he says, confused. "I feel very close to him. I feel that I have known him all my life. I want to be with him. I want to make love to him."


I give him a look. "Is this your brain speaking, or your... ¿Como se dice `penis' en Espagñol?" I ask, grabbing my crotch.


"Pene," he replies. "It is my heart speaking."


I look at him pensively. "Have you been in love before?"


"With my father. Not with another boy."


"Have you been...sexually active? Have you been with anyone before?"


"Si. With a woman. It was not...productive."


"How long ago was that?"


"Eight months."


"Before you make love to my son, I want you tested for HIV. We can get the test done tomorrow. We'll have the results within a week. No sex before your test results come back, and after that, I want you to use condoms until we're sure. HIV often doesn't show up on test results for six months."


He looks sad.


"If you are in love with Evan, you will want to protect him. You will not want to kill him because you're unsure of your...medical status. If you're not willing to wait, then this is your...pene...talking rather than your heart."


He nods, slowly.


"I think he is falling in love with you, too," I confide. "He seems so happy. But, let me tell you, Joaquin, you'd better mean this. Evan has seen his share of tragedy, lately. I don't want him hurt. Cliff, his boyfriend..."


"He has told me. I will not hurt him. I love him."


"...Fine. We'll go to the doctor tomorrow and get you tested. Assuming that the preliminary test comes back negative, and assuming that Evan wants you, I'll allow the two of you to make love...with protection. Until we get the initial test results, I'll expect the two of you to be chaste. Kiss all you want. You can even sleep with him, but no...umm...penetración."


"Si," he says, sadly.


When he leaves the office, I go grab Evan, drag him back to the office, and relate our conversation. "I'm impressed that he came to me at all. It shows a sense of honor. I can't think of an American boy who would have asked my permission. They would have just fucked you. I think he does love you, but we need to slow this down a bit until we're sure that he's safe. Okay?"


Evan nods. "I think I love him, too, but, yes, I'll do as you ask," he says, smiling. We hug, and I kiss him. He knows I love him and that what I'm doing is in his best interest. Like all sixteen-year-olds, he's anxious, but he understands the risks. I think he's happy to have someone else make this decision for him. God knows, his mother wouldn't have done it. I think he's happy to finally have a caring parent.


A week later, Dr. Cohen telephones me with the results. Joaquin is negative. "But, of course, it sometimes takes six months to..."


"I know, I know," I say. "We've been down this road before, god knows."


He laughs. "Yes we have. Bring him back in three months, and we'll check again."


I break the news to Evan and Joaquin with a gift. It's gift-wrapped with a fancy ribbon. When they tear off the wrapping paper, what they find is a box of 36 Trojan-Enz condoms and a bottle of Astroglide. "Your preliminary HIV results came back from the lab," I say to Joaquin. "You appear to be negative. Congratulations! The two of you have my permission to make love. But...if I catch you not using a condom for the next six months, I will kick your ass." Apparently the phrase "kick your ass," which I've translated literally, isn't something one says in Spanish. Joaquin giggles, and then catches himself and looks grave.


Years ago, a friend of mine, a guy probably forty years my senior, used to tell stories about when he was stationed in Taiwan during the Korean War. His job was to copy Morse code that was broadcast on obscure radio frequencies and feed it to cryptologists who would decode the ciphers and translate it first into Korean, and then into English. He was a drunk, and told me once about a pedicab (rickshaw) driver who had pestered him unmercifully one evening to let him drive him to the base -- for a fee. Finally, in very poor Mandarin, my friend told that pedicab driver to (literal translation) "insert your pedicab into his anus." The notion of this so worried the pedicab driver, that he followed my friend all over the city warning other pedicab drivers to leave him alone...lest they have pieces of lumber extending from their rectums.


This is what I fear I've done with Joaquin. My Spanish is not idiomatic. I don't know how to curse or threaten in Spanish. I think I've probably offered to treat his ass like a soccer ball, and to make a goal. He nods, though. He gets it. I'm really going to have to learn to speak this language gooder one day.




Two weeks later. I'm back in the basement with Dinh. He's naked, blindfolded, and shackled to the whipping frame with a bi-polar butt plug up his ass. His engorged dick is leaking like crazy in anticipation of what's to come. I should probably explain a little more about the TENS unit. Electrical current moves from one place to another by the shortest possible path. If you are the shortest possible path, then it moves through you. So, the first time I used the TENS unit on Dinh, I completed an electrical circuit between his scrotum and his dickhead. Today, the unit will establish two separate circuits, one between his scrotum and his dickhead, like last time, and one between the two sides of a butt plug. The butt plug actually provides an interesting sensation. Every time the TENS units fires, sending an electrical charge to your asshole, your sphincter muscles contract, pulling the plug further inside you. Then, when that pulse of electricity ends, you relax. If the pulses are occurring once per second, you're contracting and relaxing that quickly, essentially fucking yourself with the butt plug by virtue of your body's response to the surges of electricity. At low intensity, this can be quite pleasurable, but pleasure is not exactly what Dinh is looking for. Dinh is looking for pain, and we can deliver that, too.


"I was disappointed with your responses to Kenny's questions last night," I say. This is a complete fabrication. I'm not aware that Kenny asked Dinh anything special last night, but it gives us something to start with, and it gives me time to switch on the TENS unit and dial the intensity of the butt plug to something that I suspect feels really good. Dinh moans as the electrical surges begin to do their work. You can actually see the butt plug moving in and out as his ass responds to the electrical stimulus.


"I'm sorry," he says, grinding his teeth. "I'm sorry to have disappointed you."


"What should I do about it?" I ask, playing out the scene.


"You should punish me," he responds, squirming as the butt plug continues to undulate inside him.


"You believe you should be punished?" I ask, trying not to smile.


"Yes," he says, seriously. He's into this. He's been waiting several days for this. "Yes. Please punish me."


Next I dial up the intensity of the electrodes connected to his dick and scrotum, giving his dick a nice buzz and increasing his erection. He begins to pant as his ass and dick are stimulated.


"How should I punish you," I ask.


"You should...umm...zap me," he says, his voice ragged, "like last time."


"Zap you?" I ask, tuning up the intensity to his dick just a little bit higher, high enough so that he begins to squirm, to writhe with pleasure, but not high enough to get him off.


"Yes... I...should...umm...be made...to...suffer," he pants.


"I see," I say, and abruptly turn both dials clockwise. Dinh screams. He screams, and continues to scream for the five minutes it takes before he starts pumping out rope after rope of cum. He screams until his orgasm subsides and I turn off the TENS unit. Then, like last time, he slumps forward, hanging by his wrists, awash in sweat, and breathing heavily.


I disconnect him from the TENS unit, remove the butt plug, release his wrists and ankles, and carry him to the big chair in the corner of the room. He clings to me this time, draped over my shoulder, and starts to cry. He wasn't crying during the scene, but he's crying now, sobbing.


"What's wrong, baby? You okay?"


He nods, but can't say anything. So many tears. He cries for probably ten minutes. Finally he regains control, and begins to whisper in my ear.


"That little black box is evil," he confides with a slight smile. "I've never known such pain. Have you tried it?"


I nod. "It's intense. Is it too much for you?"


"No," he whimpers. "Well, yes and no. It was different this time. Last time, you just connected it to my dick. It would turn on and then turn off, on and off. When it was off I could breathe. This time you connected it to my dick and my ass, and there was no off. It would send a jolt to my dick, and then turn off, but while my dick was off, my ass was on. God it hurt! I struggled with it. I thought I'd lose my mind. But, while I was going through it, I was okay. I was concentrating on the pain. When we were done, though, after you'd shut it off, the memory of the pain was sort of...too much, and I couldn't stop crying."


"So are you okay now?"


He nods.


"Do you not want to do this again?"


He smiles. "Actually, I liked it...mostly. It gets me off like almost nothing else."


Dinh's threshold for pain is quite high, higher than mine, god knows. The TENS unit seems to me like a good compromise. Some of the stuff he wants me to do to him I just can't do. He's talked about "fisting", which scares me to death. I've read that it's the ultimate form of intimacy between dominant and submissive partners. But...I could just never stick my whole hand up someone's ass. He'd also like to play with needles -- getting me to drive them through his nipples and through flaps of skin. Just the thought of these things makes me a little...nauseous. I'm willing to spank him, to "zap" him, to tie him up, even to work his balls and nipples a bit, but that's about as far as I can go. I'm not a very good sadist, I'm afraid, but I guess I fake it well, because Dinh seems to love what I do to him. Me? I love just cuddling with him after we're done with the rough stuff. That's my reward for coming up with these agonies. I honestly don't want to be a better sadist.



A month after he joins the symphony, Joaquin plays his first concert, a lunchtime freebie with Jason's quartet. He plays a sonata by Villa-Lobos, and a duet with Jason by Piazzolla -- essentially a sonata for violin and guitar. I'd never heard either of these pieces, but fall instantly in love with them, and apparently so does a vast number of the Symphony's core audience. The concert was announced in an e-mail to subscribers two weeks ago. Typically these concerts are sparsely attended, but this one fills Davies Symphony Hall. Curiosity about this new musician may have played a part in driving up attendance, that and the fact that the symphony has never had its own classical guitarist. And, of course, Jason is an ongoing favorite with subscribers. Any time one of the lunchtime concerts includes him, attendance goes up considerably. Jason is sort of perfect for San Francisco. He's not especially experimental, which is to say, he's not marketing himself as he would have to if he were making his living as a soloist. This means that he can be true to the music rather than endlessly looking for ways to differentiate his performances from those of other soloists. The blue-haired ladies love him, but so do composers and more avant-garde classicists who, I imagine, find it refreshing to having a musician who allows the music to speak to him.

The Villa-Lobos piece is warm and lyrical as Joaquin interprets it. It's almost languid. He's an interesting artist to watch, because, although he start a piece formally, his back straight, his face grave, as he continues to play, he bends himself over the guitar, caressing it. Sometimes he'll lay his head down on top of the instrument and close his eyes, as though he's making love to it. He seems to be so captivated by the music that he forgets there's an audience out there watching him. He reminds me of the way Jason listens to music -- recumbent and almost absent.

The Piazzolla piece is spectacular. Like the Carulli sonata, the two instruments -- in this case a violin and a guitar -- seem to be doing an intimate dance, intertwining themselves sensually. It's almost like a conversation between two lovers after sex. One will speak, kissing the other, and waiting for an answer to a question or an entreaty. The piece is magical, and the musicians are masterful. And, when they're done, I can see from the sparkle in their eyes that they're both very close to tears. The applause is thunderous. I don't think I've ever heard anything like it. They get a standing ovation. As the de-facto conductor (Tilson Thomas never does the lunchtime concerts), it's Jason's job to gesture to his fellow musician, to Joaquin, and bow. Instead, he sets his violin in his seat, moves to Joaquin, and hugs him, and Joaquin hugs him back. They have just made love. I should be jealous.

The review the next day in the Chronicle, the San Francisco paper, is stellar. I'm surprised, frankly, that the concert was reviewed at all. The Chron never attends or reviews the lunchtime series, but they review this one. I learn later that it was a call from Tilson Thomas to their arts editor that got them here. He was so sure that this performance would be spectacular that he called in a favor, and sure enough, `Spectacular' is what they call it. "Mr. Leong is never surprising," the review observes. "He is merely superb. It's hard to top perfection. Mr. Hernandez, on the other hand, is a nobody who has just become somebody very special. Discovered by Mr. Leong in a tiny village in central Mexico, he has the potential to become one of the great classical guitar virtuosi of our time, the next Parkening; perhaps even the next Segovia."

The Examiner is equally complimentary. "The Piazzolla sonata is rarely performed because it requires a level of sensitivity and precision well beyond the capabilities of most musicians. This performance was achingly beautiful -- subtle and nuanced. It's a pity they haven't recorded it, haven't share it with the rest of the world."

I'm the only one of us to see this concert. It's a school day, so Evan, Kenny, Dinh and the boys were all busy. At the conclusion of the concert, I grab Joaquin and head home. Jason has another concert this evening -- Mozart and Brahms, I think -- so he has to stay. On the way back to San Jose, Joaquin and I chat. "Did you have any idea you could make music this good?"

"Oh, yes," he says. "You should have heard my father play. I am one-tenth as good as he was. I did not know, though, that music could ever be this...collaborative. Jason is very...giving, as a musician and, I imagine, as a human being. You cannot hide when you play music. It is your heart that you play. Your humanity shows through. I knew more about him after playing the Carulli with him in San Miguel -- all of twelve minutes -- than maybe anyone knows of him except perhaps you. It was for him that I am here. Well," he giggles, "for him and Evan. I love them both, but in...different ways."

I smile. "Si."

"Why is he with you? Evan, I mean."

I give him a quizzical look.

"You are his father, no? Adoptive father. Why did you adopt him?"

"Because, like you, I fell in love with him. I try to collect all the people I fall in love with and keep them close. Jason was the only one of the guys I actually went after, and then Kenny, his cousin, fell into our laps, and then the boys, and then Dinh, and then Evan. Evan, I think, probably needed us the most. He needed to be loved without reserve. But each of us would have been very different without each other. Kenny might still be selling suits at Nordstroms, and Jason might be wasting his time writing pointless software when he could be making music, music like he made today. Kevin and Kai almost certainly would have been far less happy-go-lucky if we hadn't intervened in their lives. Me? I'd be churning out yet another computer game that has no purpose. Only Dinh is doing what he was doing when he came to us, and loving it. It's all about love, Joaquin, the transformative power of love. But, I think you know that," I add with a snort.

When we get home, Evan is home from school, and Joaquin tells him about the concert. I gush, and they kiss. Moving to the living room they kiss some more. "Te amo!" Joaquin whispers, nibbling on Evan's ear. And then they're gone, ensconced in Evan's bedroom, proving their devotion to each other.

Some of us collect stamps, and some of us collect coins. I collect love -- and I have quite a collection. I am a very lucky man.

Published first at: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Nemo-stories/