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Climbing the Corporate Ladder

Chapter Five: Make It There, Make It Anywhere


Will's stomach churned, but not from the hangover caused by a few glasses of Brian's 30-year Macallan served "neat", nor from only getting 5 hours of sleep. No, his stomach gurgled and tiny beads of sweat formed at his brow because Will had unexpectedly given a presentation about copper positions in Mongolia, and done so without notes, handouts, or slides. Without even a cup of coffee. There was coffee on the side table- 3 big stainless steel carafes with numerous official "Atwater Strategies" mugs and every type of sugar and creamer one could desire. Will thought it was only for the Executive Committee, and not realizing his new promotion (and common sense) would allow it, he was too nervous to pour himself a cup.

He was, really, still very much a kid.

"What I don't get is that research like this was brought to you and it died with you", Brian said to Alex Pendleton, Senior Commodities VP. "I mean if you can show me that you looked at this copper idea, and decided against it, I wouldn't be so concerned. We all make mistakes". He pointed at Howard Tish. "Remember Global Crossings?" Howard looked down at the table, embarrassed. "But when the idea wasn't even considered?"

"Brian it's not that I didn't consider it, I didn't know about it", Alex defended.

Brian threw his hands up in a theatrical gesture and paused, for effect, just a few seconds. The room was painfully silent. "Well then what do the people on your team do all fucking day, Alex? Jesus Christ guys what else is being left on the table for our competitors to take? Jack, what did Summit buy yesterday?"

"Klemko- the Russian natural gas fund".

"How much?"

"A hundred thousand shares", Jack said feebly.

Brian hushed his tone to a whisper. "Now what does that prick Jeff Greene know that we don't? Anyone?"

The room fell silent.

"Look, guys, this is a wake-up call. We get sloppy once, just once, and we go under like Lehman. Alex write this on the board: We are not Lehman Brothers". Alex, a 25 year Wall Street veteran, himself worth several million dollars, looked at Brian slightly incredulous. Was it a hypothetical order or did he really want him to do this? "Alex, go write it on the board", Brian said impatiently. Alex stood and wrote the phrase on a dry erase board, like he was an elementary school student serving a punishment for chewing gum. It wasn't unheard of for Brian to embarrass people if he was really pissed. And today he was pissed. "Markets open in 45, get with your teams, use them, guys. Read their research. If they aren't giving you good information, then I'll get rid of them. But if they are giving you good information and I find you are not using it... then we've got some pink slips to give out. Go, get to it" he said waving them off.

They left the conference room around 8:30am slightly browbeaten and frazzled. Some of them had been on Wall Street 30 plus years, and they'd never been schooled by a kid. Sure, kids have tried. Every summer a new intern or recent Harvard grad tries to impress them with their newly acquired knowledge, especially the last few years as the millennials are a real cocky bunch. But that morning it had actually happened, and in front of the boss. As each senior left the room, Will could hear him calling for his team to assemble. He knew Dick 1 and Dick 2 were about to have their asses handed to them by Alex, and how he wished he could be there to witness the ethanol inquiries.

"Will, hang on", Brian said staring at the futures numbers which flashed on the TV monitors. Will stood in silence for a bit, waiting. Finally, without looking away from the TVs, Brian spoke. "Good job this morning. I need you prepped like that every day. A lot's changed in 24 hours".

"I hope for the better".

"Undoubtedly. Those guys will come around. A little shake up is healthy. OK- take notes: I've assigned two guys to you. Go over what you expect of them and how they should support you, then tell HR to rewrite their job descriptions"

"Ok, should I..." Will tried to ask.

Brian kept speaking. "If they aren't what you need, tell me and we'll get you someone else. I want to talk Mongolia around 2pm so have your proposal ready. I'd like to get there by the end of the month".

"To Mongol..."

Brian cut him off. "Margaret's team handles my international travel. Talk to my assistant about dates. Tell them you and I will take my plane".

"Am I going, too?" Will asked.

Brian audibly exhaled, a sound of slight frustration. `OK', Brian thought. `Time to teach him some pointers'. "Two things, Will: I always ask for questions when I'm done, so don't interrupt. It breaks my chain of thought. Two- if I say something I mean it. So yes, you are going because I just said it. No need to ask".

Will looked at him sheepishly having forgotten that currently he was not his `special friend', but his boss, and a very powerful, notoriously precise boss whom, in all reality, he didn't know that well. Yes, they had been physically intimate, but he needed to learn Brian's personality very quickly. "Sorry, it's just, I don't have a passport", he said in a timid voice.

"Talk to Margaret", Brian said calmly. He turned and looked back at the TV monitors. "I want a meeting with the Ambassador, too. Your assistant should do a dossier on him. Have that for the two o'clock. Then I want a similar scenario for Bauxite. Something's going to happen in Bauxite, I can just tell. Get your team to do the leg work. We'll discuss it at the Ex-Com on Friday. Now..." he said turning to Will. "Questions?"

Will was scribbling frantically trying to capture all the details of Brian's orders in addition to his own thoughts using a form of shorthand that he hoped would be decipherable later. He wished he could drink the seniors' coffee. "What's ex-com mean?" he asked still writing.

"Executive Committee", Brian replied, waiting for the eye contact so Will could tell he wasn't in trouble. "Next question?"

When he did stop scribbling and looked up to see Brian was smiling, and not angry, Will relaxed and exhaled with a slight grin. "No, Sir. I'm all set".

"Good", said Brian turning to leave. In the doorway he saw no one was in the hall nearby, and turning back into the room, he whispered, "you're going to do really well".

"Thank you", Will said with a smile.

"Oh, and Will?" Brian said turning back a second time.


Brian winked. "You look good".


Margaret's assistant Allan spotted Will leaving the conference room.

"I can show you where your office is", he said politely. Odd, really, since just yesterday when Will got off the elevator after 90 minutes stuck, neither Allan nor Margaret even saw him. As Brian had said `a lot's changed in 24 hours'. Yesterday a nobody, today a player. Well, this was Manhattan. If he wanted ordinary, he'd have stayed in Iowa.

They came to an open space with three desks sitting in a circle. Behind it was a wall of glass and open to a large, private office. Three of Will's colleagues stood outside the door waiting.

"You know Jimmy, Chris and Jessica. Jimmy and Chris will support you with portfolio management, and Jessica will be your executive assistant. You all know Will", Allan said making introductions. Will felt his pulse race... three people reporting to him, and all of them older. He tried not to look nervous as he greeted them.

"Hi guys. Thanks for coming on board", he said, realizing instantly that his comment made little sense. They were more than likely reassigned without their own input, and probably not thrilled to be reporting to a kid. He had only seen Jessica and said the obligatory "good morning" and "hello". She was about 30, trim, librarian-esque with that severe looking, hair pulled back tight and Tina Fey glasses vibe. She always dressed sharp, Will had noticed that. Pencil skirts with cool belts, scarves, stiletto boots. If he were a little older and looking to date a girl again he would have hit on her.

Jimmy and Chris he had gone out drinking with a few times and could loosely call them "friends". They were in their mid or early 30's and had been at the firm a few years longer than Will. Back in May some junior staff was given the firm's box at Yankees stadium and he hung out with Jimmy there. He was nice enough, talkative, a bit over ambitious like he always had a better story or a greater joke. A bit of a one-ups-man, but not a bad guy. Chris he didn't know, but he'd seen. And seen. And seen. He'd never spoken to him, and now after 18 months it seemed awkward to introduce himself, like it was too late and the window of new acquaintances had closed. But oh how he wanted to. Chris was about 5'10'', kind of stocky with brown hair he parted on the side and kept neat, strong jaw, fine features and nice eyes. Very "classical American" looking, like if he were in a piazza in Europe with 10,000 tourists, and you asked "who's the American", they'd all point to Chris, but not because he wasn't wearing sandals with grey socks and didn't smell like a port-o-potty. Will tried not to look too excited he'd been given Chris, but inside he was happy with the selection.

"So, we invite you to take a few minutes to go over this new capability and we'll circle back with you to assess your understanding and gather feedback. Does that sound OK?" Allan asked in classic HR language. They all nodded as if those words made some sense.

"Um, yeah, sure, let's go talk", Will said. "We can find a conference room".

"Or we could just use your office", Jessica said pointing to the glass wall. Will had not realized it yet. He had a conference room... in his office.

"Oh, yeah, right. Let's go there".

`Act cool, man. Act cool. Like you knew this was happening and it's so normal to have your own kick-ass office', Will told himself walking in. A big table with several seats around it, is that a small fridge?, 24 inch monitors, furniture- real furniture with a gigantic window and... a view. `Holy shit I can look right down on Lexington Avenue. I can see the Chrysler Building! OK- act cool, totally normal... check out the size of my desk! Holy shit!' Will bit the inside of his lip to keep from laughing. How he wished his grandpa could see him now!

That first day Will worked until 11pm. And the next morning, he was in at 6am and worked until 11pm again, even missing his lunchtime work out. And we worked on Saturday. And though he didn't work in the office on Sunday, he did about 8 hours at home eating Chinese takeout. At one point he accidentally squirted duck sauce on the lap top screen trying to open the little packet with his teeth.

"I haven't jerked off in forever", he said audibly, wiping his computer, planning to log onto some porn in bed at the end of the day.

It had been over two weeks since his big promotion, and though he saw Brian every day, they hadn't really talked or even mentioned what had happened, and Will was afraid to bring it up. Maybe it was a one-time deal. Well, two times. Maybe Brian changed his mind. Will hadn't been to happy hour or a bar or a club, hadn't slept more than 6 hours, had lost weight, drunk too much coffee and started getting a burning feeling in his stomach. Then he saw his first direct deposit: $7,528.26. And the month was only half over.

He stared at that statement getting the equivalent of an erection in his ego and pride. Two weeks... $7,500. That's over $15,000 a month, after taxes. Suddenly things popped into his head: a personal trainer. An I-Pad. That Samsung 56'' LCD-TV. Then, the be-all and end-all of having "made it" in New York City: A MANHATTAN apartment.

Good-bye Queens!

Manhattan's street grid popped into his head, overlaid by the intricate subway network. Where to live in Manhattan? He worked in Midtown East. The best commute would be from the U.E.S., or Upper East Side, as the douchebags who lived there insist on calling it, but Will immediately ruled it out. Upper East was old money, stuffy, pretentious, and not a decent bar in the neighborhood. Upper West is cooler, edgier, but what a bitch of a commute. Chelsea? `I'm not that gay', Will thought. He didn't carry a small dog and wear lots of scarves. No, not Chelsea. West Village is cool and feels like a real neighborhood... but a place in Tribeca with all its awesome bars and stores... Gramercy, Soho, Financial District? `Wow I could go almost anywhere', Will thought clicking onto a real estate website, already planning a move.

He was caught in a real estate daydream when Jessica knocked on his door. "Will, there's a new TV for your wall", she said entering the room with a delivery guy. "I'll call to get it installed".

"No, I can do it", Will said taking off his jacket. He wasn't going to have some guy come up just to hang a TV. The mounting was already prepared! Man, how embarrassed he'd be. They'd never let him back in Iowa if they knew he'd grown so soft... ok, he may get his teeth whitened and had his nails buffed a few times... but he was still man enough to hang a TV. "Chris, can you give me a hand", he called.

Chris came in. "Help me hold this TV up so I can mount it", Will said rolling up his sleeves. Chris saw the colors and swirls on Will's arms, and remembered.

"That's some tattoo". Will smiled. He realized that very few guys at work had ever seen him with his shirt off, and so the tattoo sleeve was still a bit of a shock.

"Yeah I got a few", Will said.

"How far up does it go?"

"All the way to my shoulder".

Chris said nothing. It wasn't the time or the place, and Will didn't seem to catch on. They mounted the TV to the wall, Will said thanks, and Chris left holding his jacket in front of him. He went straight to the bathroom. Luckily the stalls were more like little closets with walls and doors that went ceiling to floor allowing for complete privacy. That was good, because Chris needed to jerk off, and he preferred to do it in private.


Click. Click. Click. Will flipped through pages of spreadsheets and data. It was late- close to 10pm and most people had left for the weekend, but crude was going nuts. Had Iran put ships in Hormuz? The change made no sense, and Will, like every other commodity analyst in the world, was racking his brain to figure out why the volatility. Amazing that their futures position had been so aggressive. Firms were getting crushed, and the Asian markets were probably making people homeless, but Atwater Strategies was making a small fortune. It was like someone had a crystal ball.

"I'll tell you my secret", a voice said over his shoulder. Will spun around in his chair. Brian was standing in the doorway watching from behind. He had his suit jacket over his arm and his tie loosened. He looked good. "You are good Will, but you'll never figure out how I knew to bet on crude before the close", he said with a slightly cocky, but genuinely sweet smile.

"You really are some sort of genius because you know people are getting creamed right now".

"Especially Jeff Greene", Brian said with a laugh.

"Good", Will responded. "We hate Jeff Greene".

"So did this promotion ruin your fun Friday night?"

"No, it's ruined EVERY night", Will said jokingly.

"Come on, let's grab dinner. I want to catch up".

They landed at a 3rd avenue burger joint, much more to Will's liking than any weird fancy food. Will filled Brian in on his small team and the work they had accomplished. Mostly Brian wanted to make sure Will was swimming, not sinking. He wasn't swimming, Brian discovered. He was flying.

"You ready for Mongolia next week?"

"Trip's all set. We've got a really solid agenda. I think it can be a huge opportunity for us".

"Good". Brian said. Will took a bite of his burger as Brian nervously pushed his onion rings around on his plate. He then whispered. "Any chance you might be free tonight and would like to come over?" Will looked up from his burger, and the eye contact between them could have set the room ablaze. Will's cock twitch could have thrown the table onto its side.

"Yeah", he said with a full mouth, smiling, trying not to let food fall out. Smiling, chewing, he raised his index finger in that classic "gimme a second" gesture so he could swallow his mouthful of burger, and when he had, he whispered back to Brian. "Could I stay over?" It was late, true, and crashing at Brian's would be convenient, but Will hoped he would catch on that "stay over" implied something.

"You'd better", Brian said, finishing his soda. "Just don't plan on sleeping".

Yeah, Brian caught on.

He took four 20's out of his pocket, dropped it on the table and looked at Will. "Let's go", he ordered. It was sexy. Will liked Brian in command. Normally he was the dominant one, but with Brian, it just seemed right he be in charge.

It wasn't 15 minutes later that they were naked in Brian's shower, a large black marble room big enough to serve as a carwash. It had an enormous rain shower head in the center, and nozzles all around the walls for full body massage. They stood in the middle under the cascade of hot water, intimately interlocked in a tight embrace. Will felt so good pressed against him, his warm, tight body, ripples of little muscles down his back and shoulders, fitting so tightly into his embrace. Their kiss had not broken in minutes, both of them letting their hands explore the back sides of the other, running palms down hips and thighs, up backs, across asses. Their pelvises grinded deeply into each other, stiff cocks rubbing one another. The steam began to build in intensity, causing them to sweat, and with each gasp for air between kisses, they both swallowed a mixture of hot water, perspiration, and one another's saliva.

Brian had grabbed a bar of soap and slowly lathered Will's shoulders, then his lower back, letting the suds run down his spine to his ass. When enough foam had developed he pushed his hand into Will's crack and started probing. Brian could feel the positive response and permission to proceed in the intensified kissing and sharper stabbing sensation against his leg. He let a finger make the move and circle the rim of Will's hole, building up confidence, lubricant and foam. He pushed in just a little bit. Will moaned in Brian's mouth. He could feel the tip of Brian's finger, then a knuckle, the second knuckle, then in as far as Brian could go. Will was shaking in delight, weak at the knees, almost sitting on Brian's supportive finger which penetrated him deeply. Will let his hand explore between them fondling Brian's manhood, feeling the concoction of sweat and precum epoxied to their bodies. His kisses were starved, ravenous, insatiable, as he bobbed in quick up and down bursts on Brian's hand. He was ready for the plucking.

"Do it", Will blurted, a slutty base yearn of desire. It had been so long since he had someone inside him, and he wanted Brian. How he desperately wanted Brian inside of him. The finger probed him, enlivened him, animated him. He wanted more.

Brian stepped out of the shower and quickly returned, condom sheathing his erection, and a face of pure determination. He pushed Will against the far wall of the enormous shower, outside of the cleansing cascade of pure water, backing him into the steamy, dark corner where he would make Will dirty. He squirted some lube on his fingers. "Close your eyes", he ordered Will. Brian kissed his eyes as he inserted one, no, two fingers into his hole. Brian licked Will's lips, licked up his nose to his forehead. When Will snuck a peak, Brian ordered in a commanding tone "I said close them". Will obeyed, tantalized by the orders, captivated by the inability to see his lover's next move on his eager body. Brian turned Will's head to the side, pressing his cheek against the black marble, cold and sweaty in the sauna-like conditions. He licked across Will's cheek from jawbone to ear. With his fingers deep inside Will's ass, he tongued the inside of Will's ear, blowing gently, flicking his tongue in and out of the opening. Will gasped, squeezing Brian's ass like a stress toy.

"Put your hands on my shoulders". Brian lifted Will from his underarms, still pinning him against the cold marble wall, and raised him just enough to get his cock under Will's sack, between his legs, in position. It was meant to be: Brian's cock was right at the entrance of his hole, and all he had to do was lower Will just enough to force penetration. He did. Will groaned. Loudly.

"Ah- fuck. FUCK! Bri...!" Brian kissed him savagely, stifling the cries.

"Am I hurting you?' he finally asked.

"No! It feels... so... fucking... good", Will said unable to breathe. He wrapped his legs around Brian's waist, and with just a little pushing, a rocking motion off the balls of his feet, Brian could slide Will up and down against the wall, and up and down along the length of his cock. It was flawless.

"I've wanted you like this every day", Brian said between breaths.

"Oh fuck me! Oh fuck me!" Will gasped. He couldn't believe what a whore he sound, normally a top, normally dominant, Brian had made him a submissive boy-toy. Brian thrust forward, inserting his manhood as deep as possible, and held the position for a second, staring deeply into Will's eyes seeing flecks of pleasure, passion and pain.

"I love looking in your eyes". He kissed Will slowly, a torturously slow kiss so contrasting to the hard core penetration happening below. "I love your crazy eyes".

Will couldn't make sentences. "Oh. GOD! Yes", he groaned, clinging to his shoulders like a lifejacket, drowning in the waters of deep carnal pleasure. Brian bite gently at his lips and tongue, assertive, but not cruel. It drove Will crazy. It was man fucking. It was masculine, rough, tests of strength and power. It was the vigorous man sex of the Spartans: warriors, lovers and brutes.

Brian's hips gyrated faster, and Will could feel Brian's shaft prodding forcefully against his sweet spot, making his anus contract, clamping down on Brian's dick like a vice, squeezing him into ecstasy. "I'm about to cum, Will", he warned.

"Yes!" Will screamed,

"AH! WILL!!!" Brian shouted.

"Yes!! Come inside me", Will demanded. Their bodies shook frantically, they could knock the building down, an earthquake inside the giant marble shower. Brian pushed up hard and moaned.

"AAAHHHHH", he released a guttural groan from the depths of his loins. Will could feel Brian's cock throbbing within him, spewing forth his seed.

"Oh yes! Oh yes! Oh yes!" Will whispered in gasps, consumed with the passion of the moment, thrilled to know Brian had poured out his cum inside him, luckily to be alive. "Keep pumping, baby", he begged. "Keep pumping". They kissed softly, Brian still thrusting slightly, though his sensitive cock couldn't stand for much more. Will put his head on Brian's shoulder, totally embracing and dependent on him for support and pleasure. He felt so full and fulfilled, overcome, overwhelmed, almost like he needed to cry.

Brian grabbed Will's naked thighs and untangled them from his waist. Taking a small step back, he let Will fall an inch or two to stand on his own. Will gently removed the condom, sagging full of white ejaculate, and stroked Brian's tender, sticky manhood. He wanted to fall to his knees and taste some of what remained, but he was too lightheaded. Brian put his hands on Will's face and they kissed softly, Will's cock still poking at Brian's naked body. When they stopped kissing, he ran a finger over Will's lips, looking intensely into his eyes, and without a word, knelt before him.

Without warning he put his left hand under Will's crotch, inserting two fingers into his gaping hole. Will shuddered in pleasure. Brian took Will's cock in his right hand, jerked it a few times, and then surprised Will by popping it into his mouth, slowly swallowing.

It had been a long time, but Brian remembered the sensation and taste. Mostly, he remembered the power of pleasing someone orally, making them weak, making them dependent and slave to his tongue, lips, pressure. He remembered the elevator, and how Will was the one in command. The one performing has the upper hand, a power all guys know, and girls, if they ever realized, could never wield responsibly. Will felt so good in his mouth, full and warm, leaking slightly. It tasted good, throbbing gently, alive and sensitive. Brian was glad to be back in this position again.

For Will, it was too much. The sensation of fingers inside him again, his powerful and famous boss, naked on his knees, gently sucking his cock, the oppressive steam of the shower, all these sensations both tactile and visual converged on Will's libido and conquered it.

"I'm going to cum! I'm going to cum!" Will moaned. Brian fingered him harder, making small circles inside him, curling them and rubbing them against his prostate. He jerked Will's cock, pointing the head at his neck and chest, waiting for the eruption, eager to feel cum on him again. What an explosion! A hard, thick volley of white splatter, days of pent up cum, shot forcefully from his penis. Brian jerked frantically elated to be inches away from a cumming cock again.

"Nice!", he moaned, excited to feel Will's juice splash him.

"Ugh, ugh, ugh, ugh!" Will panted, watching 5 and 6 bursts soak the boss then stream down his torso. When the orgasm subsided, Brian looked up at Will who was pinned against the wall, exhausted and trembling. Will looked weakened by their tryst. He stood, pulled Will under the shower head, and kissed him slowly, letting him catch his breath. Brian took the soap, and silently began to wash Will's body, starting with under his groin, gently cleaning his rectum and sack. He washed Will's legs, his chest and back, under his arms, Will too aroused and too tired to speak. Brian loved to touch Will, they both knew it, and they both derived pleasure from it- something Will had taught Brian in the elevator some weeks ago.

"Come on, we can go down and get a drink. It'll do you good", Brian said tenderly. Will nodded. Brian put on his bathrobe and took Will by the hand leading him naked down the hall. "Let's find you a robe". They checked out a few guest rooms and their adjoining bathrooms for a bathrobe, each unsuccessfully, until finally they entered doubled doors opening to spacious suite. It had a four-post king sized bed, large fireplace and seating area and his and hers baths. Brian trotted into one bathroom, leaving naked Will in the middle of the room. His apartment was warm, and though Will was completely nude, he wasn't cold. Or ashamed.

Brian returned holding a heavy camel colored cashmere robe. "Knew I had this one somewhere", he said triumphantly. He held it open like a servant and dressed Will, helping him put his arms into the sleeves and fixing the collar around his neck. Before tying it closed, holding the belt he pulled Will towards him stepping into the open robe for one final embrace against Will's naked torso. "I'm glad you are here", he whispered. They kissed softly. The rich fibers against Will's skin felt almost as good as Brian's embrace.

The sip of scotch did help. Will had felt almost faint, yes in part from the sex, but more than likely from the excess steam. They had been in the shower for almost an hour. He hadn't spoken in a few minutes.

"You ok?" he asked concerned, sitting on the couch with him.

"Yeah. Just... exhausted, I guess", Will replied with a smile. The cool air of the library and the strong liquor brought the color back into his face.

"This might be too forward, so feel free to say no", Brian said, picking up Will's feet and putting them in his own lap. Will pivoted and lay horizontal, resting his head on the arm of the couch. Brian looked along his body, his robe slightly a gap, sexy chest and one nipple exposed. His toned, bare legs with the dusting of brown hairs still a little damp. Brian worked his thumbs into the arches of Will's feet, and heard him let out a pleased and warm groan in approval. He smiled, happy to make Will feel another kind of pleasure. "What do you think of skipping work this weekend and getting out of town? Together?" He wasn't sure if the `together' part was sufficiently evident, so he added it for extra security. Will was surprised. He was glad to get an invitation for the evening, and really glad he was staying over, but a weekend invitation? He never even imagined it.

"Yeah!" he said enthusiastically. "But only if we do that again", he added in a playful voice.

"I'm sure we can make that happen", Brian replied smiling, still kneading Will's feet gently.

"And the boss won't mind if I don't show up till Monday?"

Brian lifted Will's foot higher to look at it more closely, tracing the blue veins running up and down along the surface skin, probing between the tiny toes with his fingers. He gently kissed it. Will thought it to be incredibly... romantic. Brian was GOOD at this. ""I can talk to him about it. Boss can be a real prick though", Brian joked.

"Yeah but I heard he was great in bed", Will answered suggestively.

Brian laughed. He lay down on top of Will and kissed him softly. "You're tired. Let's go to bed" he said.

Will followed him up the large central staircase. Tugging at his robe he asked "What do you have in mind for the weekend?"

"You'll see", Brian replied.

"Hey let me ask you, why don't you sleep in the master suit?"


"The bedroom where you got this robe. It's clearly the master suite. Why don't you sleep there?"

Brian smiled. "I prefer the one I'm in".

They spooned naked in bed, Will inside curled up tightly against Brian's body. Brian rubbed his hands down Will's side. In the moonlight that seeped through the drapes, he could see the traces and outlines of the crazy tattoo sleeve he found so sexy. He heard the calm, rhythmic breathing and saw Will's chest cavity steadily rise and fall. He had fallen asleep quickly, effortlessly. For a few moments he watched Will sleep, until nuzzling his own head closer to him and closing his eyes.

Different body, different size and shape, different scent. But in this same position, in this same space, thoughts of Harry washed over him. Like Will, Harry was pretty, confident, exceedingly talented and had helped a poor, shy kid from the Philly suburbs feel loved and special. Will's passion and fire made Brian feel like he was 25 again.

For most of his life Brian didn't dare touch the scab of those memories. Now, his relationship with Will had given him the confidence to pick at it, and he realized the wounds were still very, very fresh. It had been 30 years, yes, but that doesn't mean Brian had healed.