This multipart story is primarily about romance and relationships between men. Any reference to actual persons, living or dead, is only to enhance the fictional nature of the story and does not suggest a particular sexual orientation. If you are offended by graphic descriptions of homosexual sex, what the hell are you doing here? Bye, bye.
Special acknowledgements to Drew and Brad for providing diligent proofing and editing of the story.
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Chapter 3, ADD A LITTLE ROUX
"Hey, Kyle. You awake?" Dex asked. He had his arm draped around Kyle and his morning woodie burrowed in his blond bedmate's crack. Dex slowly moved his hard cock back and forth a few times to gently bring Kyle into consciousness.
"Ummm, this is nice," was the sleepy reply. "What time is it?" Kyle pushed back to greet his new friend's erection.
"Unfortunately, time to get up. I hate to waste a good hardon but I've got an early meeting." Dex reached down and wasn't surprised that Kyle was equally erect with wood. 'Make that steel,' Dex thought, remembering his thorough fucking of seven hours earlier.
"We gotta do this some weekend," Kyle replied, while rolling around to face Dex. He moved over to Dex's ear and nibbled on the lobe while he ground his cock into Dex's firm member. "Yeah, definitely some weekend."
"How about Saturday night? I'd like to have a little dinner, see the new Christian Bale flick and explore our friendship." Dex decided that some instant frottage was in order and started matching Kyle's morning rub.
"Saturday night is a deal," Kyle said as his breathing became more intense. He lined up his erection and Dex's with his hand and increased the speed of the friction on the underside of each other's dickheads.
"Oh, fuck...this is great," Dex groaned as the cock-to-cock rubbing and humping started to achieve the desired level of physical intimacy. 'Jesus, this certainly beats Matt Lauer and the Today Show,' Dex thought, while his nuts tightened and were withdrawing inward.
Within moments the guys shared simultaneous ejaculations. In spite of the earlier midnight sexual activities, both men erupted with force and resolve. The movement slowed down to a sticky conclusion and the two bodies clung to each other. Dex could feel the Kyle's heart beating in a slowed, synchronized response.
"Babe, how about sharing a shower before you go home? I do have a meeting in an hour and I can't be late." Dex pulled away and swung his legs over to the side of the bed. He looked down and shrugged at the sight of his chest hair and pubes matted down with their randiness.
"And a whiz, too." Kyle scooted over to the other side of the bed and stood up.
"This is a one shop place. I figure that we can pee and shower at the same time," Dex said with a laugh. He stood and started walking to the door. "Come on, let's shake a leg."
"I think I'd rather shake a dick...yours." Kyle walked up to Dex and aimed for an accurate goose as they entered the bathroom. "Bingo," he said as he grabbed for Dex's balls from the rear.
"Hey, ease up on the merchandise," Dex replied with a chuckle, while he turned on the shower water. 'Shit, he thought, 'Kyle has no idea how close he is to the truth using the term, Bingo. I gotta figure out a way to come clean to this hunk if our friendship becomes the real deal.'
"Babe, with merchandise like that, it's just too tempting."
"The file on the salmon stuffed with cash really came in handy," Bingo said above the din of noise at Starbucks. "Can you believe the cahones they have to pull that shit?"
"And a wild imagination. Who would think to look in the cavity of an air-expressed King salmon that has been handled thousands of miles away in Alaska by a third party. Is the shipment still arriving next week?" Drew was aware that the specially dressed salmon, along with 10 other harmless fish, was arriving in Washington at Reagan National Airport on Monday afternoon.
"Yep. We'll have the shipment monitored. With a hundred grand at stake, it's guaranteed that Congressman Lincoln will personally pick it up. According to their plan, the congressman will return to his office and give his staff the salmon after he's removed the contents of the stuffed fish. We'll have photography surveillance and monitor Lincoln's actions for an appropriate search once we see him retrieve the cash. Chances are it'll be out at the airport." Bingo seemed pleased with this phase of the growing investigation.
"Any idea who's behind this? I know one of the partners is representing some oil interests in Alaska."
"The research center is pretty sure that all trails will eventually lead to Texoil itself. In the meantime, we're going to squeeze Lincoln and your slippery lobbyist guys."
"Sounds like we'll get our men soon. Congratulations," Dex said before taking another sip of the decaffeinated latte.
"It's a team effort. We'll all be getting a few brownie points. How did your meeting go with our queer subject?" Bingo asked.
"Que...queer subject?" Dex put down his cup and glared at Bingo.
"Yeah, that pansy you are monitoring," Bingo said with a low chuckle.
"Okay, I'm the junior man, but understand one thing. Terms you just used are not part of my vocabulary nor that of any intelligent person." Dex was aware he was breathing a little faster and he could feel his heart pounding. 'Time to get this guy straightened out,' he decided. However, Dex was also aware that this was not the time to come out of the closet.
"Whoa, wait one frigging minute. Who are you to correct your supervisor?" Bingo sat up in his chair and returned Dex's stare with a smug superiority.
"One who is out of line? Like you have a dark complexion. I'm guessing you're a 'spick' or maybe a 'guinea-wop?" Dex watched Bingo blink and shift his body.
"Ah, I'm Italian-American so watch the name-calling," Bingo said a little louder.
"So it's okay to call a gay man - who's a good guy, by the way - a queer and a pansy? Let me tell you something, Sir, about the realities of this new century. Calling anybody a term that is considered offensive is something I don't and cannot buy. I consider racial slurs and homophobic terms unacceptable and if you don't like my philosophy, I'll put in for a transfer immediately...Sir." Dex knew he had possibly invaded his supervisor's personal space when he leaned in closer. Dex was doing everything not to scream, 'I'm a fucking fag, asshole. Deal with it.'
"Err, Dex, there's no reason to be defensive. I guess I don't understand you younger guys but I don't want to create a reason for you wanting to transfer." Bingo had a nervous look and perspiration was beading on his upper-lip. "You're doing a great job."
"Just so you know where I stand. Maybe there is a generation gap, Sir, but I'm not in a minority in thinking this way." Dex decided to ratchet down the emotional level of the conversation and get on with business. 'When I bail,' he considered, 'it will be on my terms and timetable.'
"Okay, ah, message delivered and I, um, apologize. Now let's start from the top. Would you give the rundown on the subject you were with last night for dinner?" Bingo had an expression of resignation as he restated the original question.
"In the envelope is the tape of our dinner conversation. I've concluded that he is completely clueless of knowing anything and that his congressional boss is clean. It was a screw-up in their Chicago office, clear and simple. I'm anxious to wrap this up and get on to other things." Dex kept his voice low and didn't add inflections to punctuate his statement. He stared at Bingo intently and silently communicated that this was as far as he wanted to go on the subject.
"Well, that's it, then. I'll review what you've given me but I respect your judgment. In the packet, you'll find the plan of action for the money coming in with the salmon. My advice is to take a late lunch on Monday. We'd just as soon that you were not in the office at 1:12 p.m., if you get my drift. Congressman Lincoln and some of the senior partners at your firm are going down in separate searches."
"Thanks for the heads up. I'll arrange to be out of the office from 12:45 p.m. and come back an hour or so later."
"Good. Just act casual and carefree when you leave. Maybe tell the secretary that you've got a few errands to perform."
"I'll plan on returning by 2:00 p.m. You can reach me on my cell if there are any complications."
"Excellent. Before then, take a little R 'n' R. How's your weekend shaping up?" Bingo asked, almost paternally.
"Actually, pretty well. I met somebody really nice and we're going out Saturday night." Dex smiled when he pictured Bingo's face if he ever found out who his date was.
"Well, have fun with her. Don't do anything I wouldn't do," Bingo said with a laugh.
"Don't worry, Sir." Dex rose with Bingo and each grabbed their envelopes. He smiled at the unintended, double-edged irony of Bingo's statement. In addition to his date, Dex had arranged for initial interviews with two security companies on Sunday afternoon. One interview included brunch at the Four Seasons; the other was at a K Street office. The interviews were in response to resumes he had emailed the week before.
"Fantastic. That's all I can say. This guy Dex and I have really hit it off." Kyle was highly animated in his description of the weekend activities. 'Well,' he thought, 'a G rated version with R undertones.' He and Phil Tortello were wolfing down a late salad bar lunch in the cafeteria on a pretty mellow, Monday afternoon. Since it was about 1:45 p.m., Kyle figured that he'd go to the gym after work and pass on dinner other than some soup with the evening TV news when he returned home.
"Wow, two dates and you've lived to tell about it. So I guess the stud in the Vice President's office is off the radar screen? What's his name, MacDonald Price? " Phil asked. "Christ, have you ever heard any name that's more Republican and waspy?"
"Ya got a point but he's a pretty nice guy. Everyone calls him Mac. I was going to call him and suggest a friendly get together before I met Dex."
"Well, the rate this administration is going, everyone in the executive branch will be looking for a new job and bale at the earliest opportunity. Maybe I should meet Mac before he's history in this town. I've seen his picture on the Internet and think he's kinda hot," Phil said a little smugly.
"Hot is a good description. He's usually at Cobalt on Tuesday nights and you two would make a neat couple."
"You mean he might like an old fart like me?"
"Phil, the only guy who considers you old is you. Believe me when I tell you that he'll consider you a real catch. You're smart, good looking and kinda sexy," Kyle said with a lecherous smile. "Plus, Mac Price is a pretty mature guy for his age. I suspect he might just like an antiquity like you."
"Then I might haul my tired, decrepit ass over to Cobalt tomorrow night and see what happens 'cause I gotta find a man and catch up with you. I'm secretly jealous...Dex seems to be the real deal."
"You'll find the right guy when he comes along. Just don't push it. But you're right; Dex might be for real. And the convenient thing is he lives across the street from me."
"Let me know when you want me to throw a bridal shower. I guess the wedding dress won't be white?" Phil asked with a chuckle.
"I won't even respond with a 'fuck you', Mr. Tortello. I don't think either one of us is virtuous as the driven snow." Kyle smiled and took another bite of his salad. "Well, maybe if the snow had been on Connecticut Avenue for a few hours."
"Seriously, I'm really happy for you and couldn't be more pleased if it turns out to be the right guy. Hopefully I'll find someone before I shuffle off to assisted living." Suddenly, bells playing 'Hail to the Chief' emitted from Phil's cell phone. Phil frowned, picked up the phone and pushed the 'on' button. "Yes, M'am," he answered.
Kyle watched as Phil's expression changed from curiosity to alertness.
Phil looked at Kyle and mouthed 'oh, fuck' while he listened intently to their boss. "Right you are. Kyle and I just finished lunch and will be right up." Phil scowled at the phone and turned it off.
"In the big picture, yes. The FBI just announced a raid and search at the infamous Biggs and Dasch office on K Street. Plus there's something Mandy just got wind of concerning Congressman Lincoln, the esteemed bag of bullshit from Shreveport."
"What's that slime ball done now?" On an integrity scale of 1 to 10, he considered Mandy to be a 9.8 and Lincoln hovering just above a 1.2.
"Not sure, but Mandy wants us with her pronto. The cable news channels are going into overdrive." Phil grabbed his tray and got up. Kyle did the same thing and they walked briskly over to the dirty dish conveyor area.
"Looks like the word is getting around." Kyle observed that several other people in the cafeteria were departing abruptly.
"Oh, yeah. It's going to be raining shit before the day is over," Phil replied. Phil and Kyle made a beeline for the elevator bank and impatiently waited for an elevator door to open. Within moments, 10 other congressional staffers formed a queue behind the guys. When the doors opened to an elevator, there was a rush to enter and punch in the floor numbers.
"Good luck," Kyle said to no one in particular when Phil and he exited the elevator on the third floor. He looked at the grim expressions on the faces of the other passengers. As the doors closed, they dashed to the end of the hall and Congresswoman Mandy Burns' office.
"Mandy is waiting for you," the secretary said.
Phil and Kyle entered the corner office. Two TV sets were monitoring CNN and Fox News. Along with the congresswoman was her chief of staff, Joyce Goldstein. "Hello, boys," Joyce said without looking up. "Something big is going down."
"Phil, you and Kyle will probably need to prepare a response for me. With last week's crap still warm, I'm sure that I'll be asked to comment. Grab some yellow pads," Mandy said, without her eyes leaving the TV sets.
"We'll watch this with you and try to figure out what's happening," Phil said while pointing for Kyle to sit down with him. Phil took two yellow pads from the congresswoman's credenza, handed one to his assistant and pulled up a chair.
Over the next half-hour, both cable news channels' reporters breathlessly reported 'breaking news' with remotes from the K Street office and the VIP congressional airport parking lot at Reagan National. In addition to the live reporting, each news organization assembled panels to debate the unfolding story and add 'spin' to the programs.
"Hey, Phil," Kyle said quietly. "Look to the right behind the reporter on K Street. I think that's Dex up against the yellow tape."
"Yeah, you're right. Looks like he's probably been locked out of the office." Phil pushed 'zoom' on the remote to get a better picture of Dex. "This might be an opportunity for us to get an inside opinion of what's happening. You okay with calling him on his cell?"
"Umm, sure. I am concerned about Dex and he's a big boy. If there's anything he can pass on, I know he'll do it." Kyle rose from his chair and said to Mandy, "Be right back. Phil will explain." He pulled out his cell, hit the 'on' button and walked to the door.
"The guy in the red tie is a friend of Kyle's who works in the Biggs and Dasch office. He's going to call him and see if he can find out anything."
"Good idea, Kyle. Anything will help," Mandy said as Kyle left the office.
Kyle walked over to his desk and scrolled his cell address listings to 'Tate, Dex'. He pushed 'send' and waited for the signal to connect. At the third ring, he heard the distinct click and street noises.
~~~ "Tate, here."
"Dex, this is Kyle. I just saw you on TV in the crowd over on K Street and was concerned. You okay?"
~~~ "Other than being barred from entering my office while the FBI conducts a search, everything is hunky dory," Dex said with a laugh. "Seriously, I'm doing fine. This all is part of some shit with another of the partner's dealings with a Congressman."
"Really? Anything you can tell me?"
~~~ "Well, from what I understand, Lincoln from Louisiana is in some serious doo-doo. You didn't hear it from me, but apparently he's being detained at Reagan National while the FBI searches his vehicle. Something to do with a shipment in from Alaska and some cold cash. Real cold cash," Dex said with a snicker. "I probably have said too much."
"Yeah, I was watching something happening at the airport. But the reporters couldn't figure out what was going down."
~~~ "Stay tuned. It's just a matter of time."
"Jeez, your office is a real hotbed of activity. First Abraham, and now someone else."
~~~ "I think it's the big boss, himself. This may be the end of Biggs and Dasch."
"Where does that leave you, buddy?"
~~~ "Probably without a job real soon. I started some interviews last weekend. You want to get together tonight and I'll give you what I'm thinking of doing?"
"Dex, it's at a point that I'd like to get together with you anytime. How about we meet at Clyde's for a burger?"
~~~ "Better still, why don't you grab a bottle of cheap vino and come to my place for dinner around seven. I boil great water for spaghetti and make a mean marinara sauce from Trader Joe's."
"You're on. I'll see ya then. You okay with me passing on what you told me to my boss...no I.D., of course."
~~~ "Sure, it'll all be history in a couple of hours. Just keep my name out of it. See ya at seven?"
"You got it. Take care." Kyle turned off his cell and walked back to Mandy's office. 'Hmmm, Dex certainly knows a lot for someone who is a bystander on the street,' Kyle considered. 'Something's not kosher, here. Dex and I are going to have a little heart-to-heart talk tonight.'
"Well, Mr. Information, what gives? We saw your friend take your call before he walked away from the picture." Phil moved his chair around so he could face Kyle.
"Kyle, did your friend say anything that would be helpful?" Mandy asked as she turned down the volume on the television set.
"As a matter of fact, yes. The only thing that he asked is that his name not be mentioned. Okay?" Kyle looked solemn as he returned to his seat.
"Loose lips sink battleships," Phil said with a wink, paraphrasing the famous WW II slogan.
"Confidentiality is the name of the game in this office, Kyle," Mandy added. "Any insight that can help our planning is appreciated."
"Okay, here it goes. Apparently he thinks that the big boss, Haley Biggs, is the partner going down in his office. He also advised me that we should keep watching the news coverage of Congressman Lincoln's actions over at Reagan National. Apparently Lincoln has been caught red-handed with some cold cash buried in a salmon shipment he picked up from one of the flights that came in from Alaska a little while ago. That's all I know, Mandy. Does it help?"
"Absolutely. Joyce close the door and let's plan a little strategy."
"Right, Mandy." Joyce walked over to the doorway, told the secretary to hold all calls and closed the door.
"Okay, let's analyze what we have." Mandy pulled herself closer to the desktop and continued, "First, we have our party chairman with his hand caught in Abraham's cookie jar 10 days ago and now my colleague from Louisiana is about to be busted. My first reaction is to lay low and wait for the dust to settle. Joyce, what do you think?"
"I think that's too passive. Two major hits in two weeks don't look good for you or the party. I say we be pro-active."
"In what way, Joyce?" Phil asked with obvious interest.
"The minority leader seems to be more interested in derailing the opposition's congressional agenda then anything else. But we've all got to be in top form for re-election soon. If what Kyle's friend says is going to happen, I say that we call the news desks and tell them that Mandy will issue a statement and be open for questions at 4:00 p.m. at a press conference on the steps of the Capitol." Joyce had an expression of determination on her face.
"Ballsy, but what about substance?" Phil started jotting down some notes as he waited for a reply.
"How about Mandy asks for Lincoln to step down as a member of the Ways and Means Committee, for openers, and request that the Ethics Committee begin a full investigation. Then suggest that she will work with the minority leader to find a suitable replacement. Mandy could just toss out somewhere that she would be interested in the appointment to help the country. At the same time, she suggests that it's time for a new party chairman. Whaduya think about them apples, mister press guy?"
"I say that if Mandy agrees, then we all have a lot of apple polishing to do in the next hour. Mandy, I agree with Joyce but it's your call." Phil set down his legal pad and looked intently at the congresswoman.
Mandy looked at each of her inner-circle and slowly processed the recommendations for a few moments before she said, "Okay, guys. Let's do it. Joyce, you and I can work up a position paper that the guys will use for the release. Phil, you and Kyle better get busy calling the news organizations. Also monitor CNN to see if Kyle's friend's info is correct. And, Phil, also call the minority leader's office for her chief of staff to call you back. Knowing that arrogant weasel, he'll ignore your call. But it will give me cover when he and his boss see the press conference. All right, troops, battle stations."
Kyle was a little tired as he showered and changed clothes before 6:30 p.m. He decided to watch ABC's handling of the story and Mandy's brilliant press conference over a glass of scotch, poured neat. His boss had completely trumped the rest of the party in reacting to Congressman Lincoln's detainment while the FBI found and seized the contraband. The minority leader wasn't available for an interview and only after the fact were CNN and Fox able to trot out a few senators for comment. Kyle figured that the skirts were dirty on both sides of the aisle on this issue. Therefore, most were keeping mum. 'Mandy is going to piss off a few people in the party,' Kyle figured. 'Suggesting two resignations in one day was pretty dramatic.'
Kyle had to laugh cynically at Dex's description of 'real cold cash'. But he was definitely disturbed by Dex's advance knowledge of the FBI confrontation with Lincoln at the airport. 'Something doesn't jive,' he concluded.
Other thoughts were racing through his mind as the rest of the newscast droned on. Kyle was working a mental jigsaw puzzle and some of the pieces didn't fit or were missing. 'Dex is pulling some sort of con on me,' he thought, as he sipped the scotch. 'Why? Lies and half-truths are a helluva way to start a relationship. What's he got to hide?' Kyle became more agitated as he analyzed the big picture.
As soon as the newscast was into its last story, always a 'feel good' piece, Kyle flipped off the TV, grabbed a bottle of Chianti and left the apartment. He walked across the street to Dex's building, pressed the apartment call button and the electronic release buzzed him in. He nodded to a few residents coming out of the elevator and entered for the short ride to the 10th floor. Mixed emotions flooded over him as he walked to Dex's apartment. Before he could knock, the door opened and Kyle was welcomed by a smile from the handsome man he thought he knew.
"Hey, babe. Right on time." Dex stepped aside and waited for Kyle to enter. "I'll take the wine bottle as soon as I offer an official welcome."
"Buddy, before an official welcome, I think we need to talk," Kyle said, pulling back.
"Talk? What about?" Dex appeared baffled as he took the bottle of wine and walked into the kitchen.
"Something tells me that there's a part of Dexter Tate that you're covering up and we need to clear the air if a relationship is going to continue. I've been an open book; I can't say the same thing about you." Kyle looked at Dex with a mixture of confusion and irritation.
"Um, I'm glad I haven't started the spaghetti yet." Dex's eyes darted around the room and focused on the floor before he turned off the flame under the water pot.
"Where there's smoke, there's fire?" Kyle asked as irritation ratcheted up to controlled anger.
Slowly, Dex brought his eyes up to look at Kyle. "I think we both need a drink and I'll tell you some stuff that can't go beyond these walls. Okay?"
"Trust is a two-way street. I'll decide whether I can trust you after you say what you want to say." Kyle leaned against the doorway and looked ruminatively at Dex.
TO BE CONTINUED