'52 Panhead

Chapter 12

I worked hard on the house that week, getting the two spare bedrooms painted, patching the shingles on the garage roof, and finishing up several other jobs. By the time I threw my bag in the Jeep on Friday afternoon, I was ready for some R&R and the feel of Evan's long, lean body in my hands. The drive went by quickly, and he rang my cell just as I was pulling into the parking spot next to his garage.

"Hey. I'm runnin' late. Prolly another hour."

"Well, shit. I just got here and I was expecting a hug."

"I was expecting a lot more than that!" he laughed. "I'll be there as quick as I can. There's beer and chips - make yourself at home."

I used the shiny new key he'd given me last week, and as I inserted it into the lock, I had a sudden awareness of us as a couple, something I hadn't really felt until now, despite the fact that we'd decided to move in together. I'd brought a key to my place for him, even though it was hopefully just another few months, and smiled to myself as I put it on the kitchen counter.

I lugged my bag into the bedroom, then smelled him in the air and stopped to take a few deep breaths, exhaling with a soft 'mmm.' As I left the room, I smiled at the photos of him and Luke. It was odd, I guess, but I liked looking at those old pictures. They gave me a sense of Evan before I met him, and sort of tied me into his life somehow.

I wandered back into the living room, and lay down on `The Couch'. I'd begun to think of it as `The Couch' since Evan had told me that he'd sat here with Luke that Christmas morning after the two of them had fucked each other for the first time. I lay there thinking about Evan, and was almost asleep when the front door opened. Knowing Evan would come in the back, I sat up quickly, wondering who the hell besides me had a key.

I should have known.

Rafael stepped into the room, spotting me as he turned to close the door. His face registered first recognition, then irritation, and I wondered just what it was about me that pissed him off so much. He stopped dead, and I thought he might go right back out, but he just stared at me for a moment, and then walked past me into the kitchen. When I realized he hadn't knocked, I knew that he'd expected to find me there.

I rolled off the couch and followed him, curious and a little wary. He opened the fridge, and after a moment's hesitation, handed me a beer and took one for himself. Then he grabbed a container of salsa and a bag of chips and sat down at the kitchen table as if he'd lived there all his life. I envied him his casual familiarity in Evan's home; envied the years of love and friendship they'd shared that I could never catch up to.

Finally, I sat down and silently opened my beer. He glanced at me a few times, but I just sat there drinking. Fuck it, this was his party. He scraped the label off his beer with his thumbnail, accumulating a little pile of soggy, wrinkled paper while the minutes ticked by. I was beginning to wonder if he'd ever get to it when he spoke.

"You don't know what you're gettin' into with Evan."

I frowned at him. "What do you mean?"

"He's fucked up. He's as scarred as I am. You just can't see it cause it's all inside."

I studied his face, seeing the anger and the pain. "I know he's still dealing with some stuff, but-"

"You don't know shit." He shook his head in disgust. "What're you doin' this for?"

I lifted my shoulders. "Doin' what?"

"Why didn't you fuck around with someone who could handle it when you split? Evan isn't that strong."

He stopped there, scowling at his beer bottle, his jaw muscle working.

"Is that what you're so bent outta shape about?" His eyes shifted around the table, but he didn't look at me. "You don't know a goddamn thing about me, but you're so sure I'm just hangin' around till it gets too deep?" I flipped my hand through the pile of label peelings, scattering them across the table, and spoke angrily. "You don't know shit."

"If you hurt him, I'll kill you, I swear I will." His voice shook slightly, evidence of the deep emotion he felt for Evan. He loved Evan; I could see it in his expression and hear it in his voice. Maybe was a little in love with Evan. I took a few deep breaths, turning my beer in slow circles on the table before I replied.

"If I hurt him, you're welcome to try." I lifted my gaze to his ravaged face. "Look, man, he told me a lot about the year after the accident. I understand he's got problems, and I understand how important he is to you. I love him as much as you do, but in a different way." I paused, and made sure he was looking me in the eye when I said, "I... I hunger for him."

His jaw tightened at that raw admission of how I felt about Evan, and he looked away as I took a long pull on my beer, feeling a little weird about laying my feelings out there like that, but he needed to know what the deal was, and I couldn't think of a better way to tell him.

When he spoke, the fight had gone out of him and his voice was weary. He kept his eyes lowered and spoke to the table top. "I don't ever wanna see that look in his eyes again. It was... it was like his soul had died."

When I fell in love with Evan, I knew I was getting Luke in the bargain, whatever was left of him in Evan's heart. I hadn't counted on picking up the other two guys, as well, but sitting there watching Rafael ache for Evan, I found that I didn't mind at all. I didn't even mind Raf being suspicious because I knew that my 'intentions' were honest and true. Rafael turned sideways in his chair, putting the perfect, beautiful side of his face toward me.

"Tell me about Luke," I asked him quietly. We needed to get past wanting to kill each other, and I figured Rafael would give me a different take on Luke than Evan had. "What was he like?"

He turned back toward me, leaned back in his chair and relaxed a little, staring over my shoulder as he sifted through old memories. "He was charismatic. Compelling. Maybe that's a weird word to use about a kid, but it fits. I'd never met anyone like that; he just drew people to him. He was only 15 when he moved here, but he already knew he was queer. When he met Evan, it was love at first sight, something I didn't believe in until I saw it happen between the two of them." He focused on me for a moment. "No one else existed for either of them after they met."

I saw the loss and regret in his face. "I'm surprised you didn't hate him."

He glanced at me, maybe a little surprised by my insight. "I did for a while, but you just couldn't. He was... special. I don't know how to explain it any better." He sighed, stirring his finger through the paper scrapings. "He was an outstanding athlete, quick and agile... and he played smart. His three years of football were the best our school ever had, before or since. And he was a good student, straight A's."

"When did he find time to walk on water?" I asked in a neutral tone, glancing up to see his face darken into a scowl. "Don't get your panties in a wad. He just sounds too good to be true."

"Well, since he was dead at 18, I guess maybe he was." He scrubbed a hand over his face, then propped his elbows on the table and leaned his forehead on the heels of his hands. "God, it was awful when Maggie told us he was dead. Evan didn't speak for a week. We were so fuckin' young; we just didn't have the emotional strength to deal with what had happened, but.... ah, shit.... we didn't have a choice." He paused, then spoke more softly. "We just didn't have a choice."

He got up and walked to the sink, leaning against the counter on his hands with his back to me as he looked out the window and sighed deeply. I saw him glance at the key I'd put there, staring at it for a second before going back to the window.

"There was so much more going on that no one but the three of us could understand. The physical problems were what everyone could see, and that's what they chose to deal with." He paused. "Evan's heart went to the grave with Luke. He just stopped feeling anything. Poor fucker... And Kenny... Kenny was a great point guard. Evan probably told you. Now he can't so much as wiggle his toes. And I used to be a decent looking guy, can you believe that?" He barked out a hard laugh, and then fell silent, staring out at the parking lot. His hands gripped the counter's edge hard enough to whiten his knuckles.

I sat there for a moment, not quite sure how to handle him, then remembered something Evan had said. I stood slowly and approached him, then put a hand on his right shoulder and turned him to me. When I lifted my hand toward his face, his expression shut down and he leaned back away from me, grabbing my wrist in a tight grip, his dark eyes riveted to mine. I looked steadily at him, keeping pressure in my arm, and he gradually eased his grip enough to allow me to lay my hand against the twisted, puckered skin of his cheek. As my palm touched his face, he froze, holding his breath, then began to tremble slightly. I was about to speak when he jerked my hand off him and stepped away as he glanced out the window.

"Evan's home."

He turned back to me and we stared at each other for a few seconds before he grabbed his jacket off the chair, threw open the back door, and jogged down the steps. I moved to the window in time to watch him pull Evan into a hard hug. Then he grabbed him by the shoulders, talked right in his face for a few seconds, gave him a quick shake, and walked out of sight. Evan watched him for a minute, blinking, looked toward the condo, then got his stuff from the car and came inside.

He looked at me curiously while he put his briefcase in the hall and hung his jacket up, then glanced at the empties and the label scraps scattered everywhere. "Was he here long?"

"Half hour maybe," I replied, waiting to see where this was going. I wasn't sure what Raf had said to him.

"He was pretty wound up." He gave me a sidelong look. "Told me that if I let you get away, he'd kick my ass from here to next Sunday."

"Really?" Coulda fooled me.

I walked to him, wrapping him up in the hug I'd been waiting for all week. He pulled back after a moment to kiss me, and then looked at me solemnly.

"I'm not sure I can take him, so I guess I better keep you."

"Fuckin' A."

I grinned at him and he smiled back; it was a good start to another great weekend. Lust had initially attracted me to Evan, but love and respect for the man he was had become equally important and I treasured our time together.

We stayed in that night, and ordered a pizza that arrived just as I was grunting my way through the first orgasm of the evening. Evan wiped his mouth quickly and jumped up, yanking his shorts on and opening the door just wide enough to get the pizza box through, careful not to breathe his cummy breath on the delivery guy. When he closed it, he looked at me sprawled on the floor five feet away, butt naked, deflating erection in one hand, drained balls in the other, and said, "That's just how I like you, bare assed and satisfied."

I couldn't agree more - that's how I liked me, too.


Saturday was cold and dreary, so we met Raf and Kenny at the mall in the afternoon and went to the movies, watching Clive Owen maneuver his way through Closer. Poor Jude Law looked good, but he didn't stand a chance. We wandered around the mall afterwards, reluctant to go out into the drizzle. Kenny and Evan stopped to admire the window of a men's store, while Rafael and I strolled ahead. He'd been friendly enough to me today, if a little distant, but now he seemed uncomfortable and kept his eyes on the floor when he spoke.

"What you did yesterday... only Evan and Kenny ever touch me that way." He glanced at me then. "Why did you do that?"

I looked at him closely, but saw only puzzled sincerity on his face, so I decided to answer him honestly and fully. "Because I like you. I like how you are with Kenny, and that you love Evan enough to wanna kick my ass."

I put my hand on his arm and let my eyes roam over his features. The best looking kid in school, Evan had said. I believed it. On the left - wavy black hair, a deep brown eye set in smooth brown skin, beautiful expressive mouth. On the right - devastation. The scarring looked even worse in the harsh light of the mall, and there was no mistaking the fact that he'd been badly burned. He didn't flinch from my gaze, but I felt him tense slightly under my hand.

"I think you're a great lookin' guy," I told him with quiet conviction, looking him dead in the eyes.

He held my gaze for a few seconds, his eyes dark and full of emotion. God knows what he might have said to me, but Evan and Kenny caught up with us just then and he turned to greet them. After we'd toured the mall, we decided to go eat at a new Chinese place on the edge of town. The food was pretty good and we had a fun time; Kenny and I told stories about the astounding computer illiteracy of some of our clients.

By the time we left the restaurant, it had stopped drizzling. We stood around in the parking lot for a while, saying goodnight, and this time I rated a hug from Rafael, which I returned warmly, holding his hard body close for a second. I was getting more comfortable with Kenny too, and was pleasantly surprised when he kissed me lightly as I leaned over to hug him. He had a powerful upper body from rolling his chair around for the past ten years, and I gave his shoulders a quick massage before he got in the van.

Evan pulled me to him when we got in the car, giving me a big, wet kiss that jolted through my nuts.

"Jesus, what was that for?" I asked him, licking my lips. "Not that you need a reason."

"Because you're a good guy, and you're making an effort. I didn't know Rafael would be so much work."

"Yeah, but he's comin' around. He can't resist me."

"I know the feeling," he snorted, then sighed. "Thanks."

Rafael and Kenny mattered to me because they were part of Evan's life, but I was beginning to care about them just for who they were. They'd been through a catastrophic experience, and had come out the other side tattered and mangled, but they were men I would be glad to call friends. I watched them drive off with a good feeling in my chest.

We curled up on the couch when we got home, naked under a blanket. Evan rolled onto his back and pulled me onto him and up a little so he could kiss my neck. As he did, he rubbed a hand down my back, eventually sliding his long middle finger into the crack of my ass. He began to make a 'come here' motion with his finger, stroking it firmly over my hole each time, and after a few minutes of that, I was grinding against him.

He put a hand against my chest and pushed me up so that I was straddling his belly. He took his hand off my ass and slid it under me from the front, pressed his fingertip into me, and stroked my cock with the other.

"I wanna watch you shoot. Can you cum like this?"

"Fuck, yeah! Are you kiddin'?"

I moaned as his finger sank deeper and began to make the 'come here' motion inside my ass. I dropped my head to my chest, groaning each time the pad of his finger coasted across my prostate. His hand was firm on my cock, and when I looked at him, he was watching me with a mix of tenderness and passion that warmed me clear through. He loved me - I could see it in his face.

After a few minutes, I leaned forward, bracing my hands on his chest, and began to pump into his fist, already feeling the pressure building in my balls. Just before I came, I slowed my thrusts and he loosened his grip, jerking the circle of his thumb and first two fingers quickly over the head of my dick. I locked eyes with him, and my breath hitched as the first shot surged up my cock and jetted across his chest in a hot creamy splatter. I gasped and held my breath as the second volley followed, then a few more before I slowed down and groaned my way through the gushes that followed.

He'd been thrusting with his hips, rubbing his hard cock up and down between my ass cheeks the whole time, and suddenly I felt him stiffen beneath me, then a spurt of heat blasted me in the back as he came no-handed, twisting his hips up from the couch with the intensity of it.

"Unnnhh, fuck!" he groaned. "God, it turned me on watchin' you." He still had my dick in a loose grip, and scooped up a puddle of my cum with his other hand, smearing it around my chest as he watched me with an intense look in his eyes.

I leaned down until our faces were inches apart. "Evan, I don't know how I got through the day before I met you. I love you so much."

The look on his face softened as he smiled at me. "I love you, too."


We spent most of Sunday in bed.

First there was coffee and the paper.

We checked out the real estate section, finding a few that sounded like something we might be interested in, so we decided to take a drive that afternoon and see what they looked like.

Then there was sex.

Sex with Evan was a deep and constant pleasure to me, as much a mental and emotional fulfillment as a physical one. We fucked a lot, which was great, and we jerked each other off and traded blow jobs. If someone had told me that I'd find a sex act I enjoyed more than fucking a tight, slick asshole, I never would have believed them, but we'd found something else we both really liked.

One night, as I was working my way around to sticking my dick in him, I was laying on him, kissing his neck while he rubbed my back with one hand and squeezed my ass with the other. Our semi-soft cocks were squished together between us as they hardened, and it felt so good that I just stayed there.

At some point, Evan realized he wasn't going to get fucked, and began to really concentrate on what we were doing. He rolled his hips against me in a way that dragged his pubic bone up my cock with just the right amount of pressure, and I realized we were onto something.

We'd cum stomach to stomach before, but only to satisfy the initial urgency, so that later we could enjoy a nice long fuck. That night was the first time we'd purposely stayed in that position for the main event. He spread his legs and wrapped them around the back of mine, holding me tightly to him, changing the angle of contact to one that I knew would get me off with no problem.

We were both leakers, so long before we climaxed, our stomachs were slick with precum, and sliding our cocks through the slippery friction of our hard bellies was exquisite. The heads of our dicks bumped together, and the feel of Evan's cock against mine drove me nuts.

I lay down flat on him, gripped his shoulders, and buried my face in his neck as he moved me against him with his hands on my butt. I didn't try to hurry it, as I tended to do sometimes; I just let him get us there in his own sweet time. When we came, I shook so hard that I had to grip the sheets in both fists to steady myself. Evan was gasping out desperate 'unh', 'unh', 'unh's as he shot, each one an explosion of warm, moist breath against my cheek, and I knew that this was something we'd come back to. Occasionally we added something to the basic recipe - nipple tweaks (my personal favorite), a finger in the ass (Evan's - what a surprise, huh?) - but the times we're closest, the most loving and romantic, are the times we simply lie face to face and rub our dicks together.

Later, after I'd rolled off him and cleaned us up a little, I realized that somewhere along the way, I'd begun thinking about sex with Evan as `making love,' not just fucking. Another step in my evolution from cock hound to boyfriend.


We spent the next two weekends at my place, trying to get my property in prime selling condition. The first weekend in October, we finished the backyard fence late on a Saturday afternoon. We'd taken down the old one and put up a sturdy chain link that would hold in kids and dogs, since this neighborhood was getting popular with families. It was hard work; we were tired and sweaty when we finally dragged our butts into the house for a beer and a shower, in that order.

There wasn't a damn thing on TV and we were tired of pizza, so we drove to what passed for a sports bar in my part of town and snagged a table where we could see the big flat screen. After two burgers with the works, fries, and Dr. Peppers, we were satisfied, food-wise, and thinking about going home to walk the dog when Evan decided he had to piss. I watched him walk to the back of the pub, admiring his butt in those 501s he was so fond of, until he turned the corner into the can, and then I turned my attention back to the game.

I got caught up in the debate over the instant replay of a bad call and didn't realize he'd been gone a while until he came walking quickly back through the room. He snagged his jacket off the chair, and kept moving, grabbing at my shirt on the way by. I hurried after him, barely catching up as we reached the Jeep.

He braced one arm on the roof of the Jeep with his head hanging down, and his other arm wrapped around his chest. It was then I realized something was really wrong. I moved around in front of him, bending to look up at his face.

"Jesus, Evan! What the fuck happened?"

His bottom lip was split, one cheekbone was scraped raw, and he was breathing fast and shallow. "Your buddy Mark... jumped me... in the bathroom," he wheezed, holding a hand to his ribs as his bloody lip dripped steadily onto the blacktop.

"That son of a bitch!" Evan grabbed my arm as I started back into the bar with blood in my eye. Nobody, especially that asshole, was gonna fuck with Evan without answering to me. "Let me go, goddamnit. I'm gonna kick his fuckin' ass."

"Leave it!" Evan barked at me, and then doubled over groaning in pain. "Aghhhh, God! Just get me home."

I clamped a lid on my anger and helped him carefully into the Jeep, casting a last glance at the bar as I pulled out of the lot. I figured I could track Mark down later, after I'd gotten Evan taken care of. He was leaning against the door, eyes closed, holding my flannel shirt to his mouth, and wincing whenever we hit a rough patch in the road.

"Think your ribs are busted? You wanna go by the emergency room?"

"Uh-uh, just take me home."

So I took him home. In the bathroom, after I got his face cleaned up, I could see that he was gonna have a shiner by morning. Mark's fist had caught him high on the cheekbone and it was already turning purple. His lip looked nasty, split on the inside from his teeth and the outside from the impact of Mark's knuckles, but it gradually quit bleeding as he held ice to it. His ribs hurt the worst; there was a long purple bruise slanting down and back from his left arm pit almost to his waist, and he could barely stand for me to touch it. There wasn't much to do for any of his injuries but ice them down and let time heal them.

I stripped him gently and put him in bed, tucking the covers up around him. He took my hand and held it to his chest, looking up at me through one good eye and one that was rapidly swelling shut, despite the ice, but he was breathing a little easier.

"Don't go after him, Jeff. I left him out cold on the floor. Hopefully they'll just think he slipped and fell. I need you here, with me. Please."

Well, I couldn't leave Evan after he'd asked so sweetly, so I undressed and got into bed. After we found a position that was comfortable for him, he gave me the long version. Mark had sucker punched him in the face as he walked through the door, knocking him into the edge of the sink, which is how he hurt his ribs. Mark landed another one as Evan was getting his feet under him, but then Evan's longer reach let him put Mark on the floor in two punches.

I thought back to the day at the dog park and that evening on my deck, and figured Mark had been waiting for the chance to nail Evan. Well, he was gonna be one sorry motherfucker when I caught up with him. I was surprised at how angry it made me to see Evan injured. I wanted blood and I wanted it now, but Evan was starting to doze off, so I took deep, calming breaths and held him while he slept.

It's a joy and an agony to love someone; you laugh with their triumphs, but you also suffer with their hurts. It's more work; you've got not only your own ups and downs to contend with, but theirs, as well. I was just beginning to experience this with Evan, and right now it hurt - really fuckin' bad.

I ran my hand over the curve of his shoulder, feeling the bones and muscles under his smooth skin. I fell in love with Evan's body before I fell in love with his mind or his personality. After all these months, I knew the feel of him, the firm resilience of muscles at rest; the knobby angles of wrist and ankle; the velvety texture of the skin inside his elbow, behind his ear, at the back of his knee; the silken brush of his armpit hair across my face; the tight heat of his asshole; the cock-hardening glide of his tongue on mine; the satiny steel of his cock in my hand. I knew his body well and never tired of touching him; it was both a comfort and an excitement to me.

As I watched his chest rise and fall, I felt a strong sense of protectiveness toward him, a sense of responsibility for his happiness and well-being. I knew I couldn't follow him around all day and save him from every paper cut and rude word, but somehow, I sure as hell wanted to.

Tonight, with him sleeping injured in my arms, it was enough to know that he was safe; that for now, these few hours of night, no harm could come to him. I lowered my face to his hair and breathed him in, feeling my cock stir slightly as it always did at the scent of him. I settled him more deeply against me and closed my eyes, content to let life and all its risky possibilities wait until tomorrow.


Evan looked like hell Sunday morning and felt worse. His eye was swelled to a slit, his face was eight shades of purple, and his lip was swollen and black with dried blood. His ribs hurt the worst, though; he could barely get out of bed. We showered together, as usual, and I soaped him gently while he stood braced against the wall with the hot water sluicing down his back.

It hurt him to move in almost any direction, so I carefully got him dressed in sweats and put him under a blanket on the couch with the TV clicker and some coffee, and then worked around the house all day, checking on him now and then. He slept a little, read a little, and watched some TV, but by the time dinner got close, he was bored out of his mind and wanted to get out of the house. Hand in hand, we walked slowly to the Italian place where we'd eaten the second night he'd come into the garage.

We were feeling sentimental, reminiscing all through dinner about that first weekend we'd spent together. I told him about the moment in the kitchen with the light coming in just right when I'd decided he was beautiful. As I told him about it, I realized that it was at that moment when I began to fall in love with him. All my instincts had been screaming YES!!! at the top of their lungs, and they'd been right; Evan was everything he'd seemed to be, and now he was all mine.

He confided that it was the physical aspect of that weekend that did it for him. Being able to sustain an erection so that he could fuck me had convinced him that I was the one for him more than anything else could have. It had been ten long years and a lot of men across the sheets, so to speak, until he'd met the one to whom his mind and body would allow him to respond. Right after screwing me for the first time, he was afraid that breaking down in tears would send me running for the hills, but I assured him that quite the contrary had happened; I'd felt good that he trusted me enough to let go.

"But I wondered about that, once I figured out you'd rather bottom. So you just needed to know you could fuck me?"

"Yeah, that my head would let me go there with you. And... Luke and I only did it a few times, so I don't know how that would have shaken out. Maybe I just like to bottom for you cause you're so good at topping." He shrugged. "Maybe with him I would've ended up a top."

I thought about that a second. "Maybe. I know for me, on the odd occasions I've bottomed, it was always more about the mood I was in, than the guy. Actually, I think it's not really something you get to decide. I think it's mostly pre-programmed, like bein' queer. Top, bottom, both - whatever."

We looked at each other for a moment, then Evan grinned. "I don't really give a fuck why I like it, I just know I do."

As we strolled home, we decided he'd spend the night and go home Monday afternoon, giving his ribs one more day before he'd try driving. He settled back onto the couch as I got us a Kahlua on the rocks to share before bed. He was running his hand up and down my leg as he sat there and, of course, I started getting hard. He was in no shape to do anything, so I thought about paint colors and flooring patterns, but when he bumped his hand into my nuts for the third time, I finally said something.

"It's not polite to get me all worked up when you're out of commission," I said with a smile as I stopped his hand with my own.

"Jerk off for me," he said, tickling the head of my cock through my jeans.

"What?" I wasn't sure I'd heard him right.

"It was hot watching you a couple weeks ago. Do it for me."

I studied his face for a moment, but my dick had already decided it sounded like a great idea, about to strangle itself in my underwear. What the hell.

I did a slow strip for him, rubbing my hands over my body as I dropped my clothes to the floor piece by piece. I tossed my boxer briefs at him, laughing when he sniffed them appreciatively. By the time I was naked, my cock was poker straight and pointing at the ceiling. I waggled it in his face, and then sat down at the other end of the couch, leaning back against the arm with one foot on the floor and the other on the cushion, giving him an unrestricted view of the playground.

My cock bounced around as I touched everywhere but there. I played with my nipples with one hand and tugged at my sack with the other, rolling my balls around; then slid a finger down to circle my hole lightly. Evan's eyes had gone dark and his jaw was tight as he watched me. I thought he might jerk off with me, but he kept both hands on his thighs, fingers digging in deep.

When I leaned forward and let a mouthful of spit drool from my lips onto the tip of my cock, Evan made a soft noise deep in his throat. I circled my palm lightly over the head of my dick, working it around, then pumped myself firmly a few times, stopping on an upstroke, squeezing a fat drop of precum from my slit. Evan's eyes were glued to it as I scooped it up on a fingertip and stretched forward to offer it to him. His eyes dropped shut as his mouth opened. He shuddered once as I touched it to his tongue, then he sucked my finger as I withdrew it from his mouth.

I began to stroke myself, keeping the other hand busy with my nuts and my asshole. By the time I sunk a finger into myself for the first time, Evan's eyes were glassy and he had a boner the size of a salami in his sweats, but he still hadn't touched himself.

"Let me see it," I told him, and he pulled the waist of his sweats down under his nuts, letting his erection spring up to waver with each beat of his heart. That was all I needed. I started to stroke with a purpose, jiggling my finger in my ass until I felt the initial contraction as my balls lifted to blast the first shot up my cock. It burst from me in a white stream that went a foot in the air, landing on my chest with an audible 'plop.' Three more followed as I jerked and grunted, gasping between shots.

By the time I finished, I was exhausted; it had been a first for me, jerkin' off while another guy just sat and watched the whole thing, and it had been pretty cool once I got into it. Evan was staring at me like he could eat me alive, and I crawled over to him, kissing him carefully on his good cheek.

"How was that?" I purred into his ear, and then slurped my tongue up his neck.

"Jesus," he said in a strained voice. "I... That was... " He closed his eyes for a minute, swallowed hard, and tried again. "I've never seen anything that excited me more," he enunciated carefully. "You are fuckin' amazing. God, I love you!"

We were staring at each other from about six inches apart. I kissed him again, licking the corner of his mouth with little flicks of my tongue, then took a firm grip on his rock hard erection.

"Hang onto your ribs," I told him.

"Oh, God, it's gonna hurt," he moaned, even as he began to thrust slowly into my fist.

"Don't tighten up, just let it go."

I could feel him try to relax, and I loosened my grip slightly, easing him into it. He began to climax after only a few strokes, and shook all through it, vibrating like he was plugged in. As he wound down, he opened his eyes and smiled at me, and it was one of those moments that etch themselves in your memory, the kind that you can call up and relive for the rest of your life. Evan smiled up at me with his heart blazing in his eyes, and I just about lost control. I snuggled down into his arm, my head on his chest, and we stayed there until we began to fall asleep.

His bruises healed over the next couple weeks, and I wasn't lucky enough to come across Mark in any dark alleys. I couldn't wait to get my hands on him and kept my eye open when I was out at night.


Callie and I hit the nursery Tuesday afternoon, buying flats and pots of late perennials in spectacular autumn colors - reds and golds and russets. We worked side by side, doing her beds one day and mine the next, tossing out tired old plants, trimming shrubs, sprucing things up. Chewy lent a hand by running off with the old towel I was using to kneel on, dashing around just out of reach, growling like a grizzly bear. I chased him around the yard for a few minutes, finally catching him when he turned too sharply and went down in a heap.

By the end of the day Thursday, my back ached and I had blisters, but my yard looked great. I'd picked up a few pumpkins and swiped some dried corn stalks from a farmer's field outside town. I arranged them to one side of the front door, and went in to a shower and a beer feeling very pleased with myself. Evan called just as I was turning out the light to go to sleep.

"Hey," he said. His voice was soft with that little yearning we both developed as the week apart drew to a close.

"I miss you, too."

He chuckled. "That bad, huh?"

"Yeah. You sound like I feel. But I'll be there tomorrow."

"I know." He paused. "Do you... Sometimes when I'm back here by myself, doing my usual Monday through Friday thing, it seems like maybe you don't really exist. Like being with you is someplace I go in a dream or something."

I was silent as I realized that Evan was much more real to me than I was to him. We'd spent most of our time here, at my house, and so most of our memories were here. I could walk into any room and see him there, recall a conversation we'd had, remember the feel of us together. That he obviously couldn't do the same made me uneasy, but I wasn't sure if it was because we'd spent so little time there, or because Luke still inhabited so much of Evan's heart and mind.


"Yeah, I'm here."

"Please don't be angry. One thing that I love about us is that I can tell you stuff I'd never say to anyone else. I meant that being with you is so good, so much more complete than the life I've been living here alone, that sometimes it's hard to realize they're both real." He sighed, a whoosh of melancholy that came through the phone line loud and clear. "I miss you," he said softly. "I really miss you."



David of Hope -- thanks for cleaning up after me.

M -- thanks for the mind-expanding emails.