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 84

By: Tim Keppler (nemoami@yahoo.com)

 Edited by: Bob Leahy


"But why wouldn't Kenny, or Jason, or even Dinh, be a better choice of adoptive parent?" I ask Bob Titus, my attorney. "They're Asian, after all. Why am I the better choice in this case?"

"You have a track record in the eyes of the courts and the Child Welfare people. You've adopted four children already. You've been vetted by the state of Michigan in adopting Kevin and Kai, and by the state of California in adopting Ian and Evan. There have been no incidents, no reports of abuse. You're squeaky clean. Actually, you're better than squeaky clean because you're also married, and because the state of California doesn't know that Jason is a guy. Nowhere on the application for your marriage license did you identify his sex. So, you're a married man like any other married man. But, if we start tarting out Dinh and Kenny, and identifying this as their address, it opens a can of worms that we may not be able to reseal. It's just easier if you adopt them."

I nod. "Okay. Can you get the paperwork together?"

Bob nods. "I still need to do some research. Technically, they're Singaporean, but their father has a green card and is a permanent resident of the U.S. I suppose technically Singapore could contest the adoption of a Singaporean citizen, but I don't know why they would. They're not hung up on gay people adopting children the way China is, but I want to check to see if there are any precedents for this. Leslie is okay with this, you said?"

"Yeah, he doesn't want them. He wants to be `out from under them,' he says."

Bob shakes his head in disgust. "Why'd they adopt them in the first place?"

"I have to be really careful with questions like this, because this whole thing just pisses me off. Why do people adopt animals from the pound and then abandon them when they move to a new city. It's my son who's done this. I love my son, but he has made me very angry. The point is, though, that we can fix this. Leslie will sign anything you put in front of him whenever you put it in front of him. He wants to be rid of these kids, and I want them. And he wants to give them to me."

Bob nods. "Yeah, we should be able to make this happen pretty quickly. We're going to have to navigate some shoals, but I honestly can't see anyone opposing this. The Child Welfare people are mostly assholes, but never underestimate the power of indolence. If they choose to investigate you, that means they'll actually have to do some work. With your record, the likelihood is that they'll leave you alone both because they're lazy, and because they know that I'll wave your records in the face of a judge if they come near you. They have tastier (and easier) fish to fry."

Bob is a genius, and he understands the profession of lawyering like no one I've ever met. Mostly, it's all about intimidation. It's about scaring the other side into believing that you have a better case and a smarter lawyer, and Bob is very, very smart. I lead him to the door, and he turns and hugs me, a gesture that surprises me. Usually we shake hands as he leaves. Today he hugs me. "You surprise me often," he says with a chuckle. "The stuff you bring me is unusual. Well, it's probably not unusual, but I never expected to be an attorney with any kind of specialization or expertise in gay issues. Now I have that expertise, and a lot of gay clients, many of them recommended by you. Sometimes, though, you touch me. When you adopted Evan, you touched me. Here was a boy off the streets who no one wanted but you. And, today you've touched me again. It's not that you're bailing Ian and Leslie out of a bad decision, it's that you're doing this because you can't stand the thought of having these three little boys adrift in a world that doesn't love them." He hugs me again.

"You haven't met them. Would you like to?" I ask, glassy-eyed.

Bob nods. I motion him toward the kitchen, where Kevin and Kai are doing their homework, and where Feng is telling stories to Tan and Quan. Jason is fixing dinner.

"Hey, Jase," Bob says, "how're you?"

Jason wipes his hands, and comes forward to hug Bob. I'm not sure why Bob has been hugging Jason for years, but has never hugged me. I just have no idea. But who cares? I love Bob anyway.

"Yo, Feng, come meet my friend," I say. "Bring your little brothers."

Feng looks up, and smiles enthusiastically. He grabs Tan's hand, and Quan's, and leads them over to us. Bob is mesmerized, and suddenly he's glassy-eyed. He reaches out and shakes Feng's hand, tousles Tan's hair, and then lifts Quan into the air, hugging him. Quan is a little scared. He's not real comfortable with strangers. "He's a little shy," I say. "He needs to be T-I-C-K-L-E-D." I spell it out for him.

"Gee," Bob says with a big grin. "Doesn't that spell `tickle'?"

Quan immediately starts to squirm and to giggle. "I believe it does, yes," I reply.

Bob looks into Quan's eyes, a very apprehensive and giggly little Quan. Then he slides his thumb up under Quan's armpit and wiggles it, and Quan screams with laughter. Suddenly they're best friends. I lead Bob back out into the entryway and open the door for him. "They're adorable," he says, "so cute, and so young. We'll make this happen. Come what may, we'll make this happen, and I'll do my best to keep the Child Welfare people out of your pants." He reaches over and hugs me again, and then is gone.

Tan, Feng and Quan have now officially been with us for two months. By "officially," I mean we have documented guardianship, a contract with Leslie, basically an "Intent to Adopt," and I have $3M out of the $7M that was in Ian's trust fund. I would happily have educated these kids myself, but Ian needed to do penance. He offered me the money, and I accepted it. There's no reason that Jason, Kenny and Dinh, who are gainfully employed in our family, should pay for the education of Ian's children, although they'd have done it in a heartbeat. Why? Because we're all crazy about these kids! I didn't discuss the adoption with Kenny or Dinh before I agreed to it. I discussed it with Jason, but I didn't have time to get to the other guys before I made the offer. When I told them, they were over the moon. Dinh loves kids, so he was just delighted to have more playmates. Kenny was far more philosophical. "I haven't been happy about how Ian and Leslie have treated these kids. They're neglectful, and not affectionate. I'm so happy they'll be ours, not that they haven't been ours for a while now. I just feel that I can commit to them more completely now that I know that they won't be snatched out from under us at a moment's notice." This was basically Jason's argument. This was why he wouldn't take them temporarily. I don't know how people can become foster parents knowing full well that they're going to have their heart broken eventually. Or maybe they won't. Nobody seems to want older children, so maybe they're pretty secure in a foster household. Nobody's going to adopt them, so you don't have to worry about losing them. Or maybe most foster homes are about the money the parents are paid for "caring" for the children entrusted to them. This was certainly true in Ian's case. The woman fostering him didn't give rat dick about him. All she wanted was the monthly stipend.

In any case, Feng, Quan and Tan will soon be ours, and they've adjusted well to their new family. The good news, I guess, is that they didn't lose Ian, Leslie and Shawn cold-turkey. Jason, Kenny, Dinh and I were mostly caring for them, but Ian and Leslie were still around...sort of. In other words, they didn't feel rejected by making an abrupt transition from one set of parents to another. That already had slowly happened over time. When Leslie eventually disappeared, none of the boys really noticed because he hadn't been a part of their lives for a long time. When Ian went off to London, they did notice, but probably not in the way you think. Kids are pretty resilient, and they tend to gravitate towards those who nurture them. By the time Ian finally left, I think the boys thought of him as sort of an older brother. We had become their fathers in sort of a natural transition. So, it was like your big brother going off to college. "We see him again?" Feng asked me, sort of matter-of-factly.

"Yeah. He'll be back for visits, but probably not for a while. He's going to be pretty busy."

Feng nodded, and hopped into my lap looking for a hug. That was about the extent of the impact of Ian's departure, and I suppose that's pretty sad. He'd failed to make an impression on these boys, despite being an adoptive father and the catalyst for their adoption in the first place. It was Ian, after all, who said he wanted kids. Leslie made it happen, but only to satisfy Ian's desire. Sigh.... I've got to stop dwelling on my disappointment in my eldest son and just get on with life. He has, after all, given me three more children to dote on. I should be happy, right?

So, this weekend, two exciting things are happening. First, on Friday afternoon, Evan and Joaquin are arriving from Mexico. They're coming home. And, where will they live? Right next door, of course. With Shawn having moved to L.A., Leslie having moved in with his new boyfriend, and Ian having moved to London, we have a spare house. I presented this as option to Evan. "You need to feel free to say `no,' Evan. Maybe it won't be comfortable for you and Joaquin to be this close to us. If it isn't, you need to say so. We really don't want to intrude. You need to let me know if...."

"Umm...Tim," Evan interrupts. "We were hoping to move back into your house. We both really want to be a part of the family. Having the house right next door would be a dream come true. Can we really do that?"

"Of course you can do that. It's empty. We'd all love to have you living there."

"God, I can't wait to get home! I've been so majorly looking forward to this."

"Us, too, sweetie. Everyone is really excited."

The second exciting thing that's happening this weekend is the annual San Francisco Gay Pride parade. Typically, we don't go to this. I mean, how many gay pride parades do you have to see? But, with Evan and Joaquin getting in on Friday, we thought it might be a festive way to celebrate their arrival, and Evan really, really wants to go. "Please...please...please," he begged. "It'll be so much fun." Evan has been to one of these before, but I don't think Joaquin has. I can't remember.

"Has Joaquin been to one of these?" I ask.

"No," Evan screams, "and he just has no idea...."

If you've never been to San Francisco Gay Pride, there's really no way for you to understand it. It attracts more than a million and a half gay people and their supporters every year, and is just one wild party! Yeah, I know that there are a lot of gay guys out there who will tell you that Gay Pride does more harm than good, and on some level, they're right. But they're assuming that the parade is intended for a straight audience. They're assuming it's intended to push my faggotry into the faces of straight white men. It isn't. It's intended to make a statement to gay men and lesbians that I am what I am, and to celebrate that. It's intended to help them come out, and be out comfortably. The message is solidarity. Secondarily, it's intended to say to society as a whole that I'm here and I'm not going away. Both of these are valuable messages. Are there a lot of embarrassingly-naked people wandering the streets? You bet your ass, but this is San Francisco, after all. Naked people is a hallmark of San Francisco, not specifically of gay pride, and it, too, is something I support. If you want to get naked and march down Market Street, do it! Surely if we have a right to "bear arms" we have a right to "bare asses."

This year the parade has more fucking Grand Marshalls than I can count. We have Cloris Leachman, a straight, 80+ year old has-been "actress;" we have Dan Choi whose only claim to fame is having said three words to the U.S. military: "I am gay;" and we have Bruce Cohen, Howard Roseman, and Dave Nicoletta, whoever the hell they are. Clearly the draw will not be celebrity. New York's Grand Marshal is Dustin Lance Black, the Oscar-winning writer of Milk, the Gus Van Sant film about the life and times of Harvey Milk. In San Francisco's case, the draw will be this year's theme: marriage, and will appeal to Californians who were disenfranchised in the last election by having their right to marry wrested from them with the passing of Proposition 8. Best of all, Feng, Quan and Tan have never seen a gay parade, or any parade as far as I know. Jason and Nathan have been sewing. They're both pretty good seamstresses. They bought bolts and bolts of rainbow fabric at Cliff's Variety in the Castro, and they've made matching rainbow shirts for everyone. Everyone! We're all going to be dressed alike -- Jason, Nathan, Thao, Kenny, Dinh, Evan, Joaquin, the five boys, and me. We are going to be so fucking cute that you just can't imagine!

But, it gets better, because we're not going to just be spectators this year. This year, we're going to be marching. Dinh belongs to a group in San Jose that meets regularly at the Billy DeFrank Gay Community Center. The SBQA (South Bay Queer and Asian) is sort of a social group. Their stated mission is to help gay Asians come out, but what they do is really broader than that. They help gay Asians develop social skills, and they help them acclimate into a predominantly non-Asian world. Because it's in the South Bay, most of these guys are Taiwanese, although you find there are a lot of Vietnamese and Koreans as well. Every year, the group marches in the San Francisco Pride parade, and every year the turn out for the march is pathetic -- maybe four guys. Asians are shy, I guess, and a lot of them are closeted. That's why they go to SBQA in the first place. So, Dinh volunteered us. All of us. This will be the biggest SBQA turnout in history. There'll be thirteen of us, plus the four guys who typically march. Seventeen. Astronomical! And Jason and Nathan make shirts for those four guys as well. We'll all be dressed the same, in rainbow shirts, carrying a banner that reads "Say `I Do' to Equal Marriage Rights." I'm seriously loving this!

And the boys seriously love their shirts! Jason has periodic fittings, and my god, the shirts are just so cute on the boys. They're white button-down-collar shirts with six-stripe rainbows arching across them and around the back. Kevin and Kai know exactly what these rainbows mean. They mean "I am a faggot". But, whether they are or not (and I doubt that either of them knows at this point), they like the solidarity with us. They love their daddies. Feng, Tan and Quan love the shirts because Kevin and Kai do. Kai and Feng, I know I've said, became fast friends. They love to play together. What surprised me even more was the relationship Kevin formed with Tan and Quan. Kevin is ten years old. Tan is four. Quan is three. Is this a match made in heaven? I don't think so. But, somehow Jason's lessons in responsibility have "taken". Kevin feels responsible for his youngest "siblings". He feels like a big brother, and that feels good to him. It sure as hell feels good to me. All the kids are starting to feel like one big family, and there's something very cozy about that. And, cozy is the word, isn't it? We have five boys stuffed into one bedroom, Nathan and Thao in another bedroom, and Dinh, Kenny, Jason and I in the master bedroom. There are eleven souls in this house. It gives the Yiddish phrase "the whole mishpocha" a whole new meaning.

So, at 3:45 on Friday afternoon, Feng, Quan, Tan and I are waiting in the ticketing area of the San Jose airport for Joaquin and Evan, and when they emerge through the security line, Tan goes nuts. He starts to jump up and down. He's elated. He and Evan bonded in Paris, and later in Hong Kong. They're best friends, and Tan cannot contain himself. He runs right past the security guy, flinging himself into Evan's arms. I guess technically this is a security violation, because the security guy is on his feet, leading Evan out of the security area as fast as he can get him out of there.

This is a really interesting change for Tan. He's the most pensive of the three boys, the most likely to fret, and the most likely to spontaneously break into tears. He's hard to get to know. He's a little afraid of Kenny, I think, which makes absolutely no sense, because Kenny is very nurturing. He's stern sometimes, but very loving. And, Tan and Dinh haven't really hit it off yet, either. He's very snuggly with me, and he loves Jason, but we're the only ones in the household that he warmed up to instantly. Until he met Evan. How did Evan pull that off? I'm not sure. My inclination is to go back to the Myers-Briggs personality types. Everyone in our house is an introvert. We're all very internally focused. I'm not convinced that introverts and extroverts can ever coexist, so I'm not surprised by the homogeneity of this particular personality trait. But, introversion isn't the only axis on which Myers-Briggs measures personality. There are three others, and we vary significantly on those other three axes. Jason, Tan and I are INFP. Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling and Perceiving -- we're "healers". Kenny, Dinh, Kai and Feng are ISTJ. Introverted, Sensory, Thinking, and Judging -- they're "inspectors". Nathan, Kevin and Thao are ISFJ -- Introvert, Sensory, Feeling, Judging - they're "protectors". And Evan? He's another INFP, like Jason and me, and like Tan. So, my theory is that Tan warms up to his own kind first. If you're an INFP, he trusts you instinctively. If you're anything else, it takes him a while to develop trust and to believe that you won't hurt him. Again, I think a lot of this sensitivity comes from his relationship with his father, whom I read as an ENTJ. Extroverted, Intuitive, Thinking and Judging -- a "field marshal". Having probably picked up his own personality traits from his mother, Tan was effectively trained to fret by a father to whom he couldn't relate and who couldn't relate to him.

However, he is crazy about Evan, and Evan is crazy about him. I've no idea how that happened, but it's fine, because Tan needs people to love who also love him. He is the most vulnerable of the children. He'll need the most nurturing in the coming years, and if Evan can help us with that, all the better.

So, after everyone has hugged and kissed, Evan asks the obvious question, "Who's cooking tonight?"

I look at him quizzically. "Jason," I reply. "It's a Jason night."

"Gracias a Dios," Joaquin breathes, looking up at the heavens. Thank god.

Now I'm beyond quizzical. Now I'm confused.

"We sort of haven't been eating anything except Mexican food for a while. We were hoping Kenny wasn't going to make Mexican food in our honor. We've sort of been longing for...umm...a Jason meal." I giggle, because I know what Jason's making. He and Nathan are making all of Evan's favorites. They have Ginger Crab, Deep-Fried Pompano, Stuffed Bitter Melon, Mongolian Beef, Stir-fried Pork and Black Mushrooms in Oyster Sauce, and Stir-fried Long Beans and Spring Onions. Tonight was to have been a Kenny night, and he was planning something Italian, but the more he thought about it, the more he thought that Evan and Joaquin might like something Asian. He swapped with Jason. He will be a sou-chef tonight. Jason will be at the helm.

By the time we get home, Kai and Kev are home from school, and just so excited to see Evan. They help him drag the five large suitcases out of the Westfalia and stow them in the house next door. Evan has never been in this house, so the boys show him around before bringing him back over to our place where Jason has lemonade waiting in the living room. I have other duties to perform, important duties. I make my way to the basement where I have both Kenny and Dinh suspended from the whipping frame. They're facing each other and are kissing passionately, so passionately that for a few minutes I just sit on a chair across from them and watch. They're both so beautiful, and so into each other right now that they don't even realize that I'm here. This scene was Kenny's idea. He talked to Dinh about it, and then to me. I agreed. It's very uncharacteristic of Kenny, who doesn't usually like to be hurt during sex, but I think Dinh has made him a little curious. I think his adventurous side has taken over. He's experimenting.

After a few minutes, I walk over to them, release Dinh and turn him around so now he has his back to Kenny. I reattach him to the whipping frame. Kenny begins to nibble on Dinh's earlobes as I attach the clamps to Dinh's nipples and a parachute ball stretcher to his scrotum. From the ball stretcher I suspend four pounds of lead weights. Dinh moans. I attach another one-pound weight, and he begins to tear up. Finally, I suspend three two-ounce weights to the chain connecting the two nipple clamps. "Ow...ow...OW!" he says, beginning to cry. Reaching between them, I lube Kenny's dick with lotion and line it up with Dinh's asshole. Kenny thrusts forward, and abruptly enters Dinh. Dinh begins to sob. Kenny beings to fuck Dinh, slowly at first, and then more vigorously, as I lay into Kenny with the razor strop. He wants it hard, he said, harder than normal, and so I'm putting a lot of force into each blow. The deal is that I'll spank him until he cums. His ass is crimson after the first eight strokes, and is beginning to bruise after twelve. And then his body goes absolutely rigid. He screams, a long, animalistic scream, and cums. Maybe a second later, Dinh does the same thing, screaming passionately while spewing cum across the room. I've stopped spanking Kenny by now, and have knelt in front of Dinh, sucking him off, extracting the last few spurts of his spunk. He's really delicious. It's a precious resource that's not to be wasted.

Finally, I remove the weights, the ball stretcher, the nipple clamps, and release them both. I carry Dinh to the chair in the corner. Kenny follows us. So, I end up with Dinh on one knee, and Kenny on the other, both draped over my shoulders, and both sobbing. After several minutes, they begin to recover, and then, pulling back, they begin to kiss each other again, still sitting on my lap. Kenny breaks the kiss finally, and begins to kiss me, more passionately than he's done in a while. And when he stops kissing me, Dinh begins. I'm the only one who hasn't gotten off, and don't think this ever goes unnoticed. Everyone gets off in one of these scenes -- always. "It's time to get you fucked," Kenny says to me, lustily. I nod. We all stand, and he strips me. Then he points to the punishment table and I climb up on my hands and knees. Kenny slides up behind me, his dick already lubed, and Dinh slithering underneath me on his back. Kenny enters me in a single slow thrust, and begins to fuck me as Dinh takes me in his mouth, swirling his tongue around my dick head before he starts to slide his mouth up and down my shaft. I have a longish dick, maybe 7", but it's fairly slender. It's perfect for deep-throating, and Dinh is very good at that. Once I have my dick lodged in his throat, he begins to swallow furiously, massaging my dick head with the muscles in his throat. I begin to moan, and then to scream, and to scream...and scream...and scream. Then I cum, and so does Kenny. I know there are people out there who will tell you that they can feel the spunk as it fills their asses. They'll tell you that they feel the heat of it. I've always thought those people were making it up. It's a good line for a story. But, honest to god, I know when his spunk starts to splash inside me this time. Is it the volume of it, or the heat? I don't know, but it really does feel...good. And he seems to ejaculate for hours. When Kenny cums, his dick swells beyond the size it was when he was merely erect. You can feel your asshole stretch a little more. Maybe that's what I'm feeling. It doesn't hurt. In fact, it feels incredible. There's a fullness to it. I don't think I ever want it to end.

But, after several minutes, regretfully, it does end. Kenny deflates, and withdraws, and Dinh, still underneath me, slides down and kisses me. "That was incredible!" I say. Kenny nods, and Dinh sighs.

"Can we do this again?" Dinh asks, looking at Kenny. Kenny smiles and nods.

"Which part of it?" I ask, a little confused.

"All of it," Kenny responds.

"I didn't think you'd like it," I say to him. "It's not...typical...of you."

"I know. I wasn't sure I'd like it either, but it was...umm...hot!" He giggles.

"What was hot about it?" I ask, curious. I really don't understand Kenny at this moment. I'm a little lost because this seems so outside the realm of what he's found erotic in the past.

Kenny looks perplexed. I don't think he's sure what he found so erotic. He thinks for a minute or so. "Well, Dinh is hot, and the idea of sharing punishment with him is pretty...exciting. But this was...umm...different than one of our usual spankings." He's completely befuddled, and then he hits on something that I find just fascinating. "It's sort of a domino effect, isn't it? Dinh gets nipple clamps and weights on his balls. They've got to hurt...a lot. He was crying, sobbing." He looks at Dinh and Dinh nods. "And the one who controls how much pain Dinh has to endure is...me. He has to endure that pain until I cum. I'm sort of the one in charge. I mean, yeah, you're the one doing the spanking, but I'm the one controlling how much I get spanked too. You're going to spank me until I cum. So, I control his pain, and mine. I guess that's what was so hot. Does that make sense?"

Dinh nods, enthusiastically. He understands. I sort of do. It strikes me as a little...passive / aggressive, but I guess I get it. And, I guess we're going to be doing this more often, because today was a hit.


The next hit is on Sunday, the day of the parade. Jason has phoned Hans-Peter Henkel, his friend in San Francisco. We haven't seen him in a while. He asks if we can stay with him for two nights -- Saturday and Sunday.

"Ja, ja," he says. "I will not be here. I will be in Napa. I'm doing my annual wine tasting. But, you are certainly welcome anyway."

"That's probably good," Jason says, giggling, "because it won't be just Tim, Kenny, me and the boys. We're adopting three more children, and Tim, Kenny and I have also adopted another partner since we last saw you. Dinh is Vietnamese. And, Tim's other adopted son, Evan, will be joining us with his partner. And, Nathan, whom you know, will be with us with his partner Thao."

There's a pause, apparently. I've noticed that Hans-Peter doesn't giggle. You either get a belly-laugh, or you get nothing. After several seconds, Jason gets a belly-laugh. "That is thirteen of you, if my arithmetic is correct, and it usually is. A baker's dozen. Yes?"

"Yes," Jason replies, giggling.

"Well, we have bed space for six as you know. The rest of you will have to...make do."

"Yes. I understand."

Then Hans-Peter says something so hysterical...for him...that it just fractures me when Jason tells me. "I assume that the rest of the football team, the back-up players, are staying elsewhere?"

Jason is nearly beside himself with laughter. "Yes," he chokes.

"Very well," says Hans-Peter, chuckling. "I will leave the house keys and a card key for the parking area with the doorman."

"Wonderful. Thanks so much, Hans-Peter."

Hans-Peter has stayed with us in the South Bay any number of times. He works in San Jose, but lives in San Francisco. When he has to work late, he'll call, often late in the evening, and we'll put him up in the spare room, so calling to ask to stay with him isn't a problem. The sheer magnitude of the party is amusing, but not the request itself. And, I think he's wrong when he says that his place only sleeps six. He doesn't know how we sleep. We'll pile the five boys into his king-sized bed in the master bedroom, and Dinh, Kenny, Jason and I will sleep on the sofa bed in the living room. We'll bring air mattresses and sleeping bags for Joaquin and Evan, and for Nathan and Thao. It'll absolutely be cozy, especially with only one bathroom, but none of us is shy. We'll work it out.

We get to San Francisco late Saturday afternoon. Joaquin and Evan are suffering from fairly-intense jet lab, and so they volunteer to babysit. We stop at a very good restaurant, 2223 on Market Street, have dinner, and then we drive over to Hans-Peter's. We collect the keys from the doorman, and schlep the boys upstairs. By now it's around 8:30pm. It's bedtime. We pour the boys into bed, help Evan and Joaquin get the air mattresses inflated, and then take off. Everyone thinks we're going to The Café on Market Street to dance. But we're not. We're going somewhere else, and if this is going to be a surprise, I have to snow Jason who by now knows San Francisco a lot better than I do. I drive in a series of circles, back and forth, until he's utterly confused about where we are or where we're going, and just as he asks, just as I've confused him so thoroughly that he has no idea what we're doing, I pull up in front of...N'Touch. N'Touch is a bar and dance club dedicated to "gay Asian men and their admirers." It's run by a close friend of mine. It was closed down for many months while they tried to recover their liquor license. They lost their license when it was discovered that they'd been unwittingly serving underage patrons. They've now reopened and expanded. We've been to N'Touch often, and have had a lot of fun here, a lot of fun. The minute Jason sees where we are, he gives me a withering look with just the hint of a smile around his lips. "Is there a dress code tonight?" he asks with a snicker.

"There could be, if you want there to be," I reply. I should explain. Brian, the owner of N'Touch and I have been close friends for years. Soon after Jason, Kenny and I first got together, I brought them to this place to shake them up a little, and to exert my control. I made them dance naked in the go-go cages for a couple of hours at a time until they finally got over their fear of public nakedness. Tonight's visit was Brian's idea. He hasn't seen us in a while and called to say that five of his go-go boys were unavailable tonight, one of the biggest nights in the gay year in San Francisco -- the night before the pride parade. Would I consider coming? I honestly didn't know what to say. My relationship with Kenny and Jason, and even Dinh, has morphed over the years. I don't exert the kind of control I used to. We've sort of moved beyond that. But, sometimes I think they miss our old relationship.

"What do you want us to do?" Jason asks, now smiling openly.


He nods.

"I want you to go in there, get your drinks from Brian, slurp `em down, and then get naked and go dance in the go-go cages."

Jason scan the rest of the guys, and then looks at me and nods.

"Naked?" Thao asks.

"Oh, you haven't done this, have you?"

He shakes his head, slowly.

"Do you think of yourself as attractive, Thao?" I ask.

Thao looks confused, and really uncomfortable.

"Seriously, do you think of yourself as...attractive?"

Finally, he shakes his head. "Not really," he says.

"Nathan, do you think Thao is attractive?"

He nods his head vigorously. "I think he's beautiful. I think he's the most beautiful guy I've ever seen. Beautiful!"


"Yes. He is beautiful."

"Kenny? Dinh?"

They both nod.

"What about naked, Nathan? Is he just as beautiful?"

"More beautiful!" Nathan replies.

"I agree," I opine. "By any objective measure, you're gorgeous. So are Jason, Kenny and Dinh. So is Nathan. So...why not show it off? Why not take pride in it? That's what this weekend is all about -- pride. How many times have you danced naked in the go-go cages in there?" I ask Jason, gesturing toward N'Touch.

"Maybe six or seven times," Jason responds.

"How was the seventh time different than the first?"

"The seventh time was liberating," Kenny responds, instantly. "It just felt really...good. The first time was pretty scary, but later it just felt...really...good. It was freeing, but it also felt good to be...admired, both because we look good, and...umm...because we had the guts to do it."

Thao is pensive, but finally nods.

"So, feel free to do what you want," I say to Thao, "but it sounds to me like Jason, Kenny, Dinh, and Nathan are planning to get naked and dance. Let's head inside."

After our first visit to N'Touch, Brian has been really good about alerting the bouncers to our arrival, and the minute I tell this bouncer who we are, he ushers us in, despite a line that stretches nearly around the block. Brian's been waiting for us, and has a nearly-fatally-dry Martini for me, a Whiskey Sour for Jason, and a Lemonade for Kenny. For Dinh he makes Iced Tea, and for Nathan he pours a glass of Chardonnay. "And, what would you like...umm...?"

"Thao," Thao responds.

"What would you like, Thao?"

"Do you have...beer?"

Brian giggles. "Thirty-one flavors. Too many to name. We're the Baskin-Robbins of beer. What kind would you like?"

"Umm...Anchor Steam?"

"On tap," Brian brags, pouring him a pint of what I consider to be the best amber lager on earth. Made in San Francisco since 1896, it's a microbrew of incredible subtlety. Thao has very good taste! I didn't know. We stand at the bar and chat with Brian for probably twenty minutes, and then, when Jason has finished his sour, he winks at Kenny. Kenny smiles, and slaps Dinh gently on the back. Dinh strokes Nathan's arm, and Nathan looks wistfully at Thao. The guys begin to strip, laying their clothes on the end of the bar. Thao looks at me, and I cock my head slightly, smiling. Having finished his beer, he moves to the side of the bar, and takes off his clothes. He looks uncomfortable, and embarrassed. He's also the only one of the five of them with pubic hair. When he's naked, Nathan leans over and kisses him, taking his hand and leads him up the stairs behind the curtains to the go-go cages. They all take their places, Brian cranks up the music, and raised the curtains. The new spotlights begin to move randomly from cage to cage. When the dancers on the floor see these five naked guys in the cages there's a moment of silence, and then Michael Jackson's "Billy Jean" starts to play. There's a scream, and a thunder of applause, and then the dance floor goes absolutely wild. It turns out that Thao is a really-good dancer. He's even better than Kenny, once he loses his inhibitions, which is something that only takes him a few minutes. The second song is "Beat It," another Michael Jackson song, and the dancers on the floor are nearly wild. Jason suddenly gets very rhythmic, as does Nathan, and they stay rhythmic for "Thriller," "Bad," and "Gone too Soon." At some point I wander over to the bar and ask Brian about his song choices. "Is this a Michael Jackson evening?"

He looks at me as though I'm from Mars. "He died yesterday," he says.

"Michael? No!"

He nods, and I find myself instantly tearing up. "Really?"

"Really! Heart attack, they say."

"But, he was only...."

"...50. Right."

Suddenly I'm terrible depressed. Whatever you may think of Michael Jackson, he was amazing. He could write, sing, and dance, Jesus Christ could he dance. He revolutionized pop music. He completely fractured the race barrier in the pop genre. He was also deeply weird. He wanted to be white so badly, that he became white. (Anti-gay Black people will tell you that faggotry is not a civil rights issue because black people can't change their skin color. Faggots can, apparently, change their sexual orientation. But Michael changed his skin color. He got his doctors to tell us that this was the result of a disease, "Vitiligo," that causes white splotches on the skin. But my sister has Vitiligo, and white splotches is what it causes. Michael never had white splotches. He simply became white. Uniformly white.) Was he a pedophile? God knows. Two juries didn't think so. They acquitted him. They though the prosecutor, one Tom Sneddon of Santa Barbara County, was slime, which certainly was true, and they thought the parents of the apparently-abused children were extortionists. Draw your own conclusions. What you can't deny, though, is the extraordinary talent of the guy, and losing him at 50 makes me profoundly sad.

Then we hit the sixth song, and it's not Michael Jackson. It's something I've never heard before, and something I don't understand. I'm totally lost. It's fast, and has one of the most complex rhythms I've ever heard. It reminds me of early Yes tracks, stuff that I had a really hard time following from the 1980s, stuff that I thought was almost un-danceable, but that I learned to dance to anyway because the melodies were just so addictive. This song is orchestral. There are a lot of strings, and French horns, for god's sake, and oboes, I think. I can't figure out the lyrics at all. I absolutely don't understand them. They're sort of muted and "under the radar". They're overshadowed by the music, almost as if they're whispered. And then I realize...they're in Cantonese. That's why almost everyone else in the room gets them but me. This is CantoPop, but nothing like I've ever heard before. Finally, we move back into the mainstream, and the usual suspects. We leave Michael behind, and move to Britney, Justin, Christina, et al. Danceable, but not especially interesting. At the end of the set, after about two hours of dancing, I move to the bar for my second Martini of the evening. "Who did the Chinese song?" I ask Brian.

"No idea. Jason passed me a CD just before they went up to dance. He told me to play it somewhere in the mix. The room really loved it. Did you notice?"

"Yeah," I say, smiling. "I noticed. If my guess is right, it's not copyrighted yet, and I suspect I know the song writers."

He raises an eyebrow and smiles.

At about 1:30am, the guys are dressed and we pile back into the Westfalia and make our way back to Hans-Peter's place. It's been such fun. We ran into three couples that we know but haven't seen in ages -- Thim and Malcolm, Kent and Jimmy, and Dang and Jonathan. You always reconnect at N'Touch, like it or not. I find true-blue rice queens a bit disconcerting, frankly. Anyone whose parameters for a relationship are based on race worry me. It's like race is more important than love. I'm not one to talk, I suppose. I have three Asian husbands, but I've had Caucasian partners, and Hispanic and Black boyfriends. I have to admit to a taste for the ethnic, but haven't been especially picky about the ethnicity. George Lopez, the Hispanic comedian, has a new late night talk show coming up. I saw him interviewed by Ellen DeGeneres recently. She asked him how his show would be different from every other late night talk show. "Well, first, I'm not a pasty white guy," he said. Is that racist? I guess. But, as about the pastiest white guy I know, I found the comment refreshing. When I was in Thailand several years ago, I bought a lot of magazines to read on planes. They were mostly Thai and Chinese (Hong Kong). I was surprised that in nearly all the ads, the models were pasty white guys. Nearly all the articles were about Caucasians. All the body images for readers of these magazines were Caucasian. I asked Jason and Kenny years ago why they were only attracted to Caucasians. They were really confused, and then they (both) said, "You're the pretty ones, aren't you?" You think media has a role to play in whom we find attractive? Duhhhh. George Lopez isn't a pasty white guy, and that's why I'll probably watch his talk show. It's just refreshing to see someone other than myself chatting away.

"So," I say, on the way to Hans-Peter's. "Who was singing the sixth song, the one in Chinese?"

Jason is sitting in the front seat, next to me, and suddenly crosses his legs. Then he crosses his arms. His body language says "Leave me alone. Don't hurt me." He's very closed off. Kenny answers. "That was Eason Chan."

Eason Chan is a model and a CantoPop star based in Hong Kong. He is very, very popular, both because he can actually sing, sorta, and because he's drop-dead gorgeous. Kenny, I know, has several of his albums. He gets them from a little media shop in New Chinatown in San Francisco.

"What was the song about?" I ask, dancing around what I'm actually interested in.

"The usual," Kenny replies wearily, "love, relationships."

"Did he write it himself?" I ask, getting closer. This discussion, I realize, is sort of like rimming. When you lick someone's ass, you lick around the pucker for as long as you can. What they want you to do is to plant your warm, wet tongue squarely on their asshole. But what you do instead is lick around it for as long as you can. It drives them crazy, and once you've touched the asshole, frankly, what have you got left? So you lick to the sides until you can't stand it anymore, until you just can't resist.

"No," Kenny replies. "He doesn't write his own songs."

"Any idea who wrote it?" I ask.

"Umm...yeah," he replies. Then he looks at Jason, who has been giggling quietly for several minutes. Jason, of course, was the one who gave Brian the CD to play at N'Touch. "You are such an asshole," Kenny says, grinning, and Jason begins to laugh.

"Who?" I ask. "Who wrote it?"

"Umm...we did. Jase and I wrote it. It's Jason's music and my lyrics."

Often, when you ride with someone, sitting in the back seat, you communicate via the rear-view mirror. You see the driver's eyes, and the driver sees your face. This can be a little disconcerting. I mean, from the back seat, all you see are eyes. If the eyes are expressive, you sometimes see everything the driver's thinking -- every thought, and every emotion. I guess my eyes are expressive.

"I guess we should have told you before we just played it for you," Kenny says, looking a little angrily at Jason.

Jason is now contrite. "Umm...yeah. We should have told you."

"So punished!" I mumble. "You guys are getting so punished." Kenny and Jason both giggle furiously.

"So how was it, Thao?" I ask with a grin. I can see Thao in the rearview mirror. He looks a little dazed. Then he looks up and we make eye contact in the mirror.

"It was different than I though it would be. I actually rather enjoyed it. I had to lose myself first, but once I did it was liberating". Always the same word. Every time I've brought someone to N'Touch and coaxed them into getting naked, always the word is "liberating". Go figure. But, imagine my glee at this moment. An ex-catholic priest has just confessed to me that getting naked and dancing madly in front of a "congregation" is liberating. As I think about this, though, wouldn't doing just about anything besides piously pontificating about the perversity of sin be liberating? This leads me to wonder....

"What about it was liberating?"

Thao thinks for several seconds. "It is like coming out," he says. "Suddenly, you are completely exposed for what and who you are. You are vulnerable, but more important, you are honest in a way I've rarely been before."

Nathan, at this moment, leans over and kisses Thao. "I love you," he whispers.

Thao leans into him, hugging him. "I love you, too. I'm so lucky." They continue to kiss for several minutes as we make our way back to Hans-Peter's flat. When we arrive, we tiptoe inside so as not to wake Joaquin and Evan. We take turns in the bathroom, and then make our way to the living room where we strip and pile into our respective "beds". I really want to fuck Jason at this moment. Why? I guess it's Nathan and Thao's declaration of love that did it, that made me remember how much I love Jason, Kenny and Dinh. I am so much in love, and so lucky. But, fucking Jason would certainly wake Evan and Joaquin, so instead I wrap my arm around Jason and pull him close. I attach myself to his back. He moans, and hugs me. And, we fall asleep.


The parade begins at 10:30am the next morning. I love fags. We're all night people. There's none of this early morning shit. The assumption is that we were all out partying last night until the early hours, and in our case, that was certainly true. So, the parade doesn't start until 10:30am. But, as marchers, we have to be there at 8:30am. The parade organizers have to herd us all into position. We get the boys up, bathed, fed and dressed, and then make our way out into the world. The parade begins at Market and Beale, and the last thing you want to do is try to drive anywhere in the city on this day. So we're leaving the Westfalia at Hans-Peter's and taking public transit. MUNI. But, so is every other fag in the city, so the MUNI trains are packed. I mean packed. And they're packed with some pretty strange-looking people. There's absolutely nowhere to sit, and everyone on the train is getting off at more or less the same place -- Market and Beale. We're all marchers. I'm carrying Kai (who at eight years old is now pretty heavy), Kenny is carrying Feng, Jason is carrying Tan, and Dinh is carrying Quan. Kevin is holding Evan's hand, and it looks like for dear life. We're all a little nervous about the boys. There are just so many people on this train. Most, I'm sure, are benign, but you never know. We're all feeling really...umm...defensive. And, of course, we're all dressed in identical shirts, which draws attention to us. I'm really happy when the metro ride is over and we can get off the train.

The good thing about marching...well, one of the good things...is that there's actually more room for marchers than for spectators. Imagine cramming a million and a half people along one and a third miles of sidewalk. That's what gay pride does in San Francisco. If you have small children, it'll make you intensely nervous. But marching, you have all the room you need. I mean, yeah, you're cramped up a bit, but it's nothing like standing on the sidewalks. So, once we get to the parade starting point, and find our place in line (which is nearly a half mile from the parade starting point) I'm suddenly comfortable. We can put the boys down. Jason gives them a lecture on how important it is to hold our hands, and everyone nods. Everyone will get to walk on their own -- well, except Quan, who we absolutely can't trust not to take off on a whim in any given direction. Him I'll carry throughout the march. This, of course, upsets him initially, but he gets used to it.

Once the march actually begins, it is just so much fun. One and a half million screaming faggots are almost more than you can take. The crowd loves us. I think it's the shirts, all seventeen of us dressed the same. The boys are nearly wild with excitement. Wouldn't you be? If you were four years old, and one and a half million people were screaming and waving at you, wouldn't you be excited. Quan, whom I've been carrying now for nearly half an hour, has learned to wave and...more important...to blow kisses. I taught him. I showed him how to do it twice. He's been doing it ever since. Every time he blows a kiss, the crowd screams, and he buries his face in my shirt, giggling furiously. Tan, too, whom Jason has been carrying, has been waving frantically to spectators on the side lines, eliciting cheers.

Occasionally, I'm an idiot. Well...maybe more than occasionally. Today is certainly one of those occasions. I brought the kids to this parade because I thought it would be exciting for them. I brought the kids because they've never been to a parade. And I brought the kids because I don't like the idea of baby sitters any more. I like to have them with us. I didn't bring the kids because I thought they'd have an impact on the "audience". I honestly never thought about it, and that's why I'm an idiot. Quan is captivating. Tan is engaging. Feng is just so cute as he waves to the crowd. And Kai is hopping up and down with excitement. He has a sign that he made with finger paint. It says, "I love my 4 Daddys." Here we are, a group of men clearly raising five small children, five small, exuberant, excited, and proud children. I know I said that Pride is mostly for the benefit of gay men and lesbians rather than to push our faggotry in the face of straight people. But, what if straight people are watching? What impression are they likely to get?

"Sir... Sir!"

There's an ABC camera crew on a little golf-cart-like thing riding next to us. They have a camera trained on us. A guy with a microphone dressed in a white Polo shirt and khakis is walking backwards, trying to get my attention. Finally he does. "Do you mind if I ask you a few questions?" he asks.

"No," I say, "that's fine."

"Why are you here today?" he asks. "Why are you marching?"

"To demonstrate the importance of marriage rights."

"Are you married?"

"I am, yes." I gesture to Jason. "This is my husband, Jason." I figure I'd better not delve into the whole issue of multiple husbands. Keep it simple for today.

"So you were one of the 18,000 same-sex couples married in California while equal marriage rights were legal?"


"Why are equal marriage rights important?"

"Why is marriage important? I have seven children, all adopted." I gesture to the boys, and throw my arm over Evan's shoulder. "What happens if I get hit by a bus?"

"Well, presumably you have a will. You've made arrangements for their...disposition."

"Why should I have to do that? Are you married? Do you have kids?"

"Yeah. I'm married. I have two little girls."

"What happens if you get hit by a bus?"

"My wife will take over."

"Right. Do you have a pension?"


"Now that you're dead, what'll happen to that?"

"My wife'll...."

"Social Security?" I interrupt.


"Do you love your wife?"

"Umm...yeah. She's everything to me."

"Why shouldn't he be everything to me?" I ask, gesturing toward Jason.

I guess I come on a little strong, because this guy really can't wait to get away from me. Kenny tells me later that I was interviewing him rather than the other way around, But...and this is a big but...we see this interview play over and over again for the next three days, and not just on ABC. All the networks seem to have it. It's even on the web playing in...Afghanistan. It's on fucking YouTube! Was it honestly that compelling? I guess. Hasn't anyone else said these things before? Well, maybe they have, but I guess not in a sound bite of less than thirty seconds, and not while guiding five small children. Jason and I suddenly became the face of gay parents everywhere. Oy vay es mir!

Speaking of five small children, it's now -- right after the interview -- that I glance around fondly at the kids...and realize that Feng is nowhere to be seen. "Where's Feng?" I ask Kenny, who's been holding his hand all this time. He lifts his right hand and looks at it blankly, and then spins around in place, searching for Feng.

"I don't know!" he says, urgently. You can sense the anguish and fear in his voice. "He must have let go of me. I must have let go of him. Oh, fuck!"

This is the horror you fear most as a parent -- losing a child in the middle of one and a half million people, in the middle of a big, impersonal city that you don't live in. You can't know how this makes you feel. Kenny is frantic, scanning the crowd, shouting for Feng, screaming his name. Then my cell phone rings, and I answer it. "Hello."

"Who is this?" a guy asks.

"This is Tim Jensen," I reply, "who's this?"

"This is Officer Dave Burke with the San Francisco Police Department. I have a little boy here with a tag around his neck that says you're his father. It says his name is Feng Jensen. Is that right?"

I think I nearly piss myself. I catch Kenny, who is by now running back and forth in tears scanning the crowd for Feng. "They found him," I say, covering the mouthpiece. "Yeah, that's right. We just realized that he's missing. We're here with five children. Feng got away from us. Where are you?"

"I'm at the corner of Market and First, the north-west corner, right in front of Rite-Aid." We're at Market and Second now.

"I'll be there in about two minutes," I say.

We sprint. We literally sprint through the line of marchers. If we were civilized about this, we'd move off onto the sidewalk, but if we did, it'd take us a lot longer to traverse the one block necessary to get to Feng. Finally, we see him. He's in the arms of a burly guy in a police uniform. Feng is sobbing, and the burly guy is bouncing him up and down, trying to comfort him. The instant Feng catches sight of us, he starts to squirm, reaching out for us, sobbing. When we get to the Officer, he asks for ID, which I produce, and he hands over a squalling Feng whom I pass to Kenny.

"You can't know how grateful I am that you called when you did," I say, teary-eyed. "We were nearly frantic."

"And you can't know how grateful I am that this boy was wearing a tag around his neck identifying himself and you, complete with your cell number. He came right to me, crying. I asked him his name, and he showed me the tag. That's a very good idea."

I nod, slowly. "We've tried to train him to find police when he's in trouble. I guess it worked. Thank you so much!"

The officer slaps me on the shoulder, and we make our way back into the marching crowd, slithering along the margins of the parade to rejoin our group. Jesus Fucking Christ, I'm relieved! You have no idea! Kenny carries Feng for the rest of the parade. He's not taking any chances.

It's a long march, and the weather is unseasonably warm -- probably 80° F. in San Francisco. But the boys are just so jazzed. When we get to the end of it, we wander through booths, but there's really nothing we need or want. We've all been given a bag of "stuff." which is pretty funny. The boys like the little rainbow flags, and Kevin likes the lip balm. Everyone likes the little tin of mints. There are balloons that blow up to look like a cock and balls, though no one but the adults recognize what they're supposed to be. And no one but the adults have any idea what the little bottles of lube are for, or the condoms. Kai squirts some of the lube into his hand and slickers it around with his fingers. "What's this, Daddy?" he asks Dinh.

Dinh dips a finger in what Kai squirted into the palm of his hand, and smears a little on Kai's nose, rubbing it around. "I dunno, Kai. Maybe it's snot."

"Ewwww," Kai says, wiping it off his nose, giggling. "Gross!"

Ultimately, we catch MUNI at Market and 8th, and head down to the Castro. We wander around there for a while, and are the darlings of boystown, both because of the shirts and the boys, who look pretty adorable in them. I don't think these boys have ever gotten their hair ruffled more frequently than today. We take them to Cliff's Variety and let them pick out a toy, and then wander back to Hans-Peter's long about 3pm. We get the boys bedded down for a nap, have a cup of tea, and then head out to a Mediterranean restaurant on Polk for dinner at around 7pm. It's been a wonderful day, or, on this of all days, I guess I should say that it's been a fabulous day. I am a card-carrying, practicing faggot, after all, or so the christian Taliban delight in telling me. And practice does make perfect.

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