This is a fictional story dealing with love and consensual sexual activities between males. If you are not of legal age, reside in an area where viewing such material is illegal, or are offended by homosexuality and/or homosexual themes, leave this site now.
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Note: Thanks to Tim and Rock for feedback on the draft chapters. I owe a special thanks to Robb for doing the final proofreading and catching all those silly little errors I missed.
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by Jeff Allen
Let's get the preliminaries out of the way right off the bat. My name's Luke Madison; I'm forty years old; and I'm an Associate Professor of History at Adams State University located in the small city of Adams in the mountains of western North Carolina. Physically I'm 5'9". I've got medium brown hair with a few gray hairs at the temples. I keep my hair on the short side...not buzzed...just short and neatly trimmed. I have a goatee and behind a pair of rimless glasses, blue eyes, which I think are sort of nondescript. In short, I look like your typical college professor. I've kept my weight at 155 by walking to and from my house to the university, jogging at midday, and being careful what I eat. I'm also gay, but I'm definitely deep in the closet at the university since my department chairperson is a raging homophobe, and that attitude pervades the department. I stay in the closet because I like my students, I think my department chair would make it difficult for me if he knew I was gay, and I've never had much luck with gay relationships. The few I've attempted have ended up as disasters for me and sometimes for my "friend" as well. It's easier to just focus on my teaching and my writing. Not that I haven't acted on my desires for male-to-male sex; I have gone to gay bars when I've been away from town during vacations or at professional meetings when those meetings were held in a city large enough that I felt confident I wouldn't run into one of my colleagues from the meeting.
My life is under control. Or least it was before I met "The Construction Hunk."
More background here. Bear with me. As I said, it's my habit to walk to work when the weather allows. My house is only five blocks from the edge of campus. The route takes me through four blocks of a pleasant residential neighborhood of older homes, some of which have been converted into student apartments. At the end of the residential area, my route takes me through one block of the downtown section, onto Elm Street that runs along the east edge of campus, and then to Platt Hall, the building that houses the History Department. Total walking time is ten to fifteen minutes tops. If the weather's bad I can drive my eight-year-old Subaru Forrester to campus, hunt for a space in the faculty parking lot, and then walk to my building. Total time that way is fifteen to twenty minutes because of the traffic, but I avoid slogging through the snow and rain.
As I said my life was under control. Go to the university, teach, have committee meetings, talk with students needing help, work on my latest writing project, and in the middle of the day head over to the faculty locker room to change into jogging clothes and get in a nice four to six mile run. Day in and day out. I liked the routine. It was safe. At home in the evenings I'd sip a glass of wine while preparing a simple dinner for me and opening a can of cat food for Tom. Evenings were generally spent preparing lectures, reading, working on my latest writing project, or listening to classical music. I rarely watched TV.
Back to the cat for a second. Tom (I know that's a real original name for a cat) was what remained from my last serious romantic relationship ten years before. I had been at the end of a two-year visiting assistant professor position at a small college in Ohio, and I'd fallen for a younger guy who worked in the library at the college. I thought we were in love. We'd even gone to the local animal shelter and adopted a kitten. We couldn't come to an agreement on a name for the beast so we started called him Tom Cat. That's how the orange and white lump of fur that was still sharing my house got his imaginative name. As for the then boyfriend, he left me for someone else only a couple of weeks after we got the darned cat.
When the boyfriend split I'd tried to take Tom back to the animal shelter. They wouldn't take him back. I was stuck with him, and he was stuck with me.
Tom and I had a relationship based on obligations. My obligations were to feed him, empty his litter box, take him to the vet for his check ups, and put aside whatever I was doing on those rare occasions when he wanted to sit in my lap. His obligations were to sleep on the back of the sofa when the sun warmed it in the morning and to act impatient if I didn't get his food ready the second he decided he wanted it. He also managed to know the most annoying time to demand attention by crawling into my lap which I think he did more to torture me than out of any sense of wanting or needing companionship. He would also jump up on my bed and sleep curled up on my chest on particularly cold winter nights. I rarely saw him at other times, except of course when he wanted dinner.
Now, just because I don't do anything sexual with other guys when I'm at home doesn't mean that I don't take notice of the good looking male students and faculty. For example on the faculty, there was Gary Griffith from the Biology Department. What a hunk, and he was openly gay! Obviously the Biology Department was more enlightened than the History Department. Then there was Matt Stevenson one of the assistant football coaches who was also Gary Griffith's partner. Just down the street from me there was Kevin Williams who lived with his wife and children in one of the restored Victorian homes a little closer to campus. There were also the guys in the house next door to the Williams place. Three apartments full of hot, hunky college jocks. Very nice to look at!
Elm Street, the one running along the edge of campus, was going to be widened from a car-congested two lane street into a five lane thoroughfare that was supposed to move the campus traffic more efficiently and help relieve some of the congestion in the downtown area. The road construction began in early March. That's about the earliest the weather permits a serious road project to begin up in our area.
The first stage of the project was to clear away a few houses and a couple of businesses. I watched the progress every day walking to and from the university. It's amazing how quickly a building that was once a thriving business or someone's home can be reduced to a pile of lumber and then be carted away leaving little behind to indicate what had been there before.
Once the demolition was completed, the road construction began.
That's when I first noticed him...the man I came to think of as `The Construction Hunk.'
It was mid March. Pieces of large equipment were on site moving earth and gravel from one spot to another accompanied by a dozen or so Hispanic men with shovels and pick axes who were dressed warmly against the cool March breezes. I think what drew my attention at first was that he was the only Anglo on the construction crew. When I first saw him he was operating a small bulldozer and pausing now and then to yell some instructions in Spanish to the men working on the ground. Clearly he was the boss man.
On a normal day I passed through the construction zone five times. Twice while walking to and from the university and then on my jog which took me on a circle around the town and the university three times. I had a lot of chances to check him out, and I took advantage of every one.
He looked big, probably over six feet, and he looked well muscled under his layers of clothing. His normal attire was well-worn jeans, sweatshirt, jacket, gloves, hardhat, and work boots. He had close-cropped medium blond hair and a strongly masculine, yet very handsome face. He was the one who operated the heavy machinery, but I also saw him with shovel in hand working side by side with the Hispanic men on the crew. When he was working the shovel, he always seemed to be smiling and talking with his men, and they responded with laughs and smiles. I don't know any Spanish, so I couldn't tell what was being said.
As the weather warmed The Construction Hunk and his men adjusted their dress. First the jacket came off, and then the sweatshirts. I almost tripped over my own feet the first time I went past the construction site on one of my midday jogs and The Construction Hunk's torso was covered by just a tight tee shirt. Holy Mackerel! The man had muscles! He wasn't over muscled like a bodybuilder, but his biceps were thick and his pectorals were well developed and squarish. What really drew my attention was that from across the street I could see his nipples sticking out against the fabric of his gray tee shirt like two pencil erasers had been glued to his chest. Believe me, I jerked off that night, and several others afterwards, imagining what it would be like to roll those two nubs around with my fingers.
Over the next few weeks I was treated to many more vistas of a tee shirt-clad Construction Hunk. Every time his nipples were pointing out the fabric of his shirt. My fascination with his seemingly permanently erect nipples grew with every sighting.
We had final exams the first week of May and commencement ceremonies over Mother's Day weekend. The first summer session started right after Memorial Day, and I was scheduled to teach a section of Post Civil War American History. Normally, I would have gone somewhere during the break between commencement and the start of summer session. I'd been visiting Atlanta or Washington, DC, for a few days over breaks. It was on those trips that I indulged in my infrequent forays into the gay bar scene. At forty I was still able to find a partner most of the time. They provided physical release. Nothing more. I decided to stay in town. I told a colleague that I wanted to update my lecture notes for the American History class, but I really didn't want to give up my daily doses of The Construction Hunk.
It was the middle of the first week of break when I saw him shirtless for the first time. My Lord, what a sight! I was on the first lap of my noontime jog. I rounded the corner onto Elm Street and scanned the area for signs of the construction crew. At first I was disappointed because I didn't see them where they had been working across the street. Then I spotted a group of the Hispanic workers gathered around a bright red Ford F250 Crew Cab truck parked in the now empty student parking lot on my side of the street. I would be running right by the truck, and the object of my desires was seated in the driver's seat with the door open. As I grew closer I realized he was shirtless. I almost stumbled, but recovered and jogged on by. He was magnificent! When I ran past I could see that he had a small patch of dark blond hair between his pecs. His quarter-sized areolas were dark brown and his nipples stood erect as always. As I went by he placed a hand on the outer part of the truck door. That movement exposed his pits which were heavily covered with dark blond hair. I almost stumbled again when he did that.
During my second pass down Elm Street my man and his crew were eating lunch. On my third pass they were just finishing their lunches. As I jogged by them The Construction Hunk looked up, met my eyes, and nodded in acknowledgment. Even from fifteen feet away I could tell that his eyes were an incredible sky blue in color.
The next day the crew was beginning to eat lunch on my first pass down Elm Street. The Construction Hunk was again shirtless and standing next to the truck. This time there was someone else sitting in the driver's seat. The man had to be a brother or close relative. He had the same color hair and similar facial features, although his were leaner, more angular, and not nearly as handsome. From what I could see he didn't have the same muscular development either. Oh, he had a good body, but it was nothing compared to the man of my fantasies. As I ran past I noticed that the new comer had a single gold hoop in his left ear. My gaydar, which was not highly developed, pinged big time. Construction Hunk said something to Newcomer then they both looked at me. Construction Hunk nodded again. This time I nodded back and flashed a smile.
I thought it was physiologically impossible to get an erection while running. I was wrong.
Weekends were boring. The construction crew didn't work on the weekends, and the scenery on my daily run was just the landscape.
Monday morning as I walked to my office everyone was back. The crew was working across the street. Construction Hunk and Newcomer were working with them, and the big red F250 was again parked in the student lot. There was one of those magnetic signs on the driver's door that I hadn't noticed before. It read:
Want it Done Right?
That morning, instead of working on lectures for my class that was starting in eight days, I searched the Internet for Crane Construction in Oakdale, Virginia. Oakdale was located outside of Marion, Virginia, along Interstate 81 about an hour and a half away from Adams State University. I found a web site for Crane Construction. They specialized in medium sized commercial construction and road repair projects. The president and CEO was listed as a Myron Crane. The secretary-treasurer was Miriam Crane. Obviously a family business.
For the rest of that week, the Construction Hunk and I exchanged glances and nods during my midday jogs. Our acknowledgments now included not only nods but the occasional smile as well. Newcomer was there at the first of the week, and he nodded and smiled as well. My gaydar pinged every time.
By the start of the Memorial Day weekend, I had decided I needed to focus my fantasies on the Newcomer. He was obviously gay. The Construction Hunk was obviously straight. He was friendly, but did nothing for my gaydar.
The construction crew didn't work over the three day Memorial Day weekend. I missed them.
Tuesday was the start of classes for the first summer term. My class was at 8:00 a.m. so I walked to the department around 7:00. No one was at the construction site yet. I met the class. It was a survey history course which could be taken by anyone to fulfill university requirements for the history graduation requirement or by history majors as one of their first courses. Generally the summer offering was filled with students taking the course for general education requirements. I was surprised to walk into the class and find several of the hunky guys from the apartments next to Kevin and Kathy Williams' house. Two of the guys looked enough alike to be brothers. The class roll confirmed it. They were Brandon and Bart Harris. Both were large guys; Brandon seemed to be about six foot four inches, and I recognized him as one of the waiters at Cantana's, a good Italian restaurant on the other side of town. Bart was a maybe two inches shorter. Both had very dark hair; Brandon looked to be the elder of the two. He had a goatee and his face would have been handsome except for a large scar that ran vertically down his left eyebrow and continued on his left cheek. Bart, on the other hand, was fashion model handsome with more refined features than his brother.
The other two guys I recognized from the apartments were Josh Locklear and Isaac South. Josh was almost as large as the Harris brothers. He had a football player's build with almost black curly hair, dark olive complexion, and distinctive light hazel eyes with a greenish cast. Isaac was the smallest of the four guys standing at around 5'10" with light brown hair, hazel eyes, and fair complexion giving him a boyish appearance.
Isaac was the one who came up to talk to me after class.
"Dr. Madison, Bart, Brandon, Josh and I live up near you. We've seen you walking to class, but we didn't know who you were before. Bart and I live in the big three-story Victorian next to Kevin and Kathy Williams while Josh and Brandon are in the apartment above the Williams' garage."
"Yes, I remember seeing you there from time to time, and I recognize Mr. Harris from Cantana's. What can I do for you, Mr. South?"
"Nothing really. Like I said, we'd seen you before and figured you were a professor and all. I just wanted to introduce myself. We see you coming by every morning, if you ever want to stop for a cup of coffee or anything, please feel free. Bart and I are up pretty early."
"I don't fraternize with my students, Mr. South."
He blushed slightly. "I didn't mean anything by that Dr. Madison. I just made the offer. We don't expect anything in return."
"Thank you, Mr. South."
Later, I tried to understand why I'd been so harsh on the boy. He probably hadn't meant anything by his invitation other than sharing a cup of coffee, but early in my career I had found it much easier to remain somewhat aloof from the students. Friendliness with students just led to rumors, especially in the History Department. In my ten years at Adams State, I'd seen more than one promising academic career derailed because of unfounded rumors.
I ran at midday. It was warm, and The Construction Hunk, the Newcomer, and several of their crew were working shirtless. I got another nod and a small wave from the Newcomer. Not a bad day.
Two mornings later I was walking to the office when I heard footsteps behind me. I turned and saw Isaac South and Bart Harris walking quickly toward me.
Isaac was the one who spoke first. "Morning, Dr. Madison. How are you today?"
"I'm fine, Mr South, and how are you?"
"We're fine, Sir. Just getting a little nervous about the test tomorrow. I didn't realize how quickly classes went in the summer."
"You just need to stay up with the reading, Mr. South. If you're prepared, the test will be a breeze. If you're not prepared, it won't be a pleasant experience."
Bart spoke next. "Oh, we'll be prepared for the test, Sir. Isaac has been making sure both of us will be ready for it." He laughed a little. "Sometimes I think I've got a certified compulsive as a boyfr...uh roommate."
Isaac shot him a glance, and Bart blushed.
I smiled. Well, I guess that cat's out of the bag...or out of the closet in this case.
I tried to hide my smile, but it didn't work. Isaac saw it and broke out in a huge grin.
"Well, I think my `friend' just gave away one of our secrets. Bart and I are boyfriends, Dr. Madison. Is that going to be a problem for you?"
"No, Mr. South. There's no problem. I don't care about your domestic arrangements. I do care about how you do in my class."
"Point taken, Doc."
We walked the rest of the way with Isaac and Bart asking me questions about the lecture material. They had such good questions that I was distracted and almost didn't notice The Construction Hunk when we walked by. I looked up in time to be rewarded with another nod and smile.
The next day I gave the first exam in the summer course. The last to complete the exam were Josh Locklear, Isaac South, and the Harris Brothers.
As he handed in his exam Isaac told me, "That was a good one Dr. Madison, but I think we were prepared for it."
"I'm glad, Mr. South. I'll try to have them back to you on Monday. Don't' slack off on the reading assignments over the weekend. The next exam is only ten days away."
"Way to ruin the weekend, Dr. Madison." With another student I might have taken offense, but when I looked up Isaac was smiling, and there was a twinkle in his eye.
"I'm just trying to keep all of you busy so you stay out of trouble."
He laughed out loud at that remark. "Not a chance, Doc." He looked over at Bart standing in the door way. "There's Trouble right over there, and I do intend to get into some of that this weekend."
With that he left the room. I saw him reach up to place an arm around Bart's shoulder as they walked down the hallway. I envied them for the apparent closeness of their relationship. I was going to be spending the weekend grading exams. Of course, Tom would be there, but he would do his best to ignore me as usual.
I gathered the exams, walked down to my office, packed my brief case, and went home.
I graded exams until nearly one in the morning before falling into bed. I got up early the next day and finished the grading. Isaac, Josh, and the Harris Boys all had high A's on the exams. None of the other students came close.
With the grading done, I pulled on a set of running clothes and headed out the door to clear my head.
When I got back from the run I stayed out in the yard and began weeding some of the flowerbeds around the house. I weeded my way around one side of the house and then moved to the end of the driveway to where I had a flower bed between the sidewalk and curb.
I was intent on cleaning out the weeds in that flowerbed when I heard the throaty sound of a diesel motor coming up the street. I didn't pay much attention until the sound of the big motor stopped right next to me. I looked up to see the big red F250 Crew cab from Crane Construction idling next to me.
I stood. The front passenger window slid down, and The Construction Hunk leaned over from the driver's seat toward the open window.
"I was just cruising around town when I saw you out here. We've been nodding to one another for several weeks now. I thought it would be nice to introduce myself. I'm Michael Crane." He stuck his hand out toward the open window.
I hesitated for a moment. This was so unexpected. I was captured by the intense sky blue of his eyes. Finally I regained some of my composure, stuck my hand through the open window of the truck, and took the offered hand.
"How do you do, Mr. Crane. I'm Luke Madison. It's a pleasure to finally meet you."
Surprisingly he turned off the engine and emerged from behind the wheel. He walked around the front of the truck. He was dressed in cargo shorts and a sky blue tee shirt that matched his eyes. Those incredible nipples of his were poking out the fabric of the tee shirt. To complete the ensemble he wore sandals. He had beautiful, big feet. When I say big, I mean big. They had to be at least a size fourteen! I don't have a foot fetish, but I'd have gladly gotten down and sucked on this guy's toes.
"Is this your house?"
"Yes, it is."
"It's a nice place. I like your landscaping. This seems like a real nice neighborhood."
"Thank you. I like it. There's a mix of house styles and a nice mix of people. It's also very convenient to the university."
"I assume you're a professor. What area do you teach?"
"I teach mostly American History."
"You must be doing a class this summer. I see you coming and going from the university dressed in your nice shirt and tie."
"Yes, I'm teaching a lower level course right now. What brings you into the neighborhood? I thought you and your crew were only here during the week."
"Normally that's what happens, but this weekend I decided to stay here and explore the town a little. I don't get much of a chance to do that during the week."
"No, I suppose you don't. You've been putting in some long hours."
He smiled. I almost melted. "Well, you know the old saying about making hay when the sun shines. The same goes in the construction business. If the weather's good, we use all the daylight we can."
He looked directly into my eyes. "Say, it's about lunch time. Would you like to go get something to eat? My treat, of course. It'd be nice to have someone to talk to."
I'd like to eat you. That would be a treat.
I pulled myself back from visions of kneeling down right there on the street and doing something with whatever was making the bulge in the crotch of his cargo shorts.
"Uh...sure. Give me a few minutes to take a quick shower and change. Would you care to come in and wait?"
I ushered him into the house and directed him back to the Florida room. After I bought the house, I'd had it added in place of a deck that had originally been on the back. The back of my yard faced a woods that was at the edge of a city park. Because of the park, I'd never have to worry about someone building behind the house. The backyard was framed with maple trees and screened by rhododendrons that were just coming into bloom. Because of the direction the room faced it was shaded by the trees in the summer and open to the sun in the winter so except for a few days in Spring when the sun was hot and the trees hadn't fully leafed out it was pleasant and usable year round.
"This is a fantastic room!"
"Thanks. I use this more than any other room in the house. Just have a seat while I grab a shower."
I hurried down the hallway to the master bedroom, showered in record time, threw on a set of clothes...cargo shorts, sandals, polo shirt, and headed back toward the Florida room. Get a hold of yourself. You're acting like a schoolgirl. He's probably dumb as a post and straight as an arrow. Just go along and enjoy the scenery. It's not like you have anyone standing in line to take you to lunch.
When I entered the Florida room I stopped short. He was sitting on the sofa. Tom, the world's most antisocial cat, was curled up in his lap.
"That was quick. You've got a great cat. What's his name?"
"I'm surprised he's even made an appearance. He's never really liked people, me included."
"He seems friendly enough to me. I love animals. We've had cats, dogs, horses, goats, even a pet crow and an opossum once."
We? He must mean his wife. "It sounds like you live in the country."
"My folks have a small farm in the country. My brother and I were always bringing animals home. I don't have any animals now. I'm gone most of the time. There's no way to take care of them."
Maybe he's not married. Still, he's got to be straight.
He drove us to Chili's on the other side of town.
After we'd looked at the menus and ordered, I said, "You said something about your brother. Has he been here working with you?"
"Yup. The other Anglo you see on the crew is my brother, Marshall. We're twins actually. Fraternal. He's the older one, and he never lets me forget it. He'll be here off and on, but mostly he works on jobs up around home. He's got a wife and two beautiful little girls so he wants to be home at night."
Well, that was the brother who looked like he might be gay. If he's straight then there's no hope with this one. He's got to be as straight as a arrow.
"Since your name is Crane, I take it this is a family business."
"Right again. My dad's the president, but he's really semi retired. His health hasn't been too good the last couple of years. Mom's the treasurer, but mostly it's Marshall and me running the business now. We've been bidding on small highway jobs like this one here in Adams. The big road construction firms don't want to touch smaller projects like this. We think there's a niche for us, and we're going to try to fill it."
"Sounds like a good business plan."
"We hope so. The company's got to grow. Marshall's girls will be headed off to college in ten or eleven years. Enough about me, do you have family around here?"
Fortunately our food came at that point, and I didn't have to divulge any information about my family.
We ate and talked. I asked some questions about road construction and the construction business in general. It kept him talking. Every once in a while he would ask me a question, and I'd try to move the conversation back around to his business.
I learned that he preferred to be called Michael not Mike, he was thirty‑one, he'd gone into the Army after high school where he'd trained as a medic, and had thought about nursing when he got out, but he'd been needed to help run the construction company so he'd gone back home to Oakdale. I also learned that the road job in town was scheduled to be completed at the end of the next summer. There would be a nice bonus if the job was done ahead of time and heavy penalties if it wasn't.
He learned that I'd been at the university for ten years and that I liked my job.
During our meal, I'd been revising my first impressions of him. Far from being dumb as a post, he was actually quite intelligent. That was very clear.
He drove me back home. When he stopped the truck in my driveway, I quickly opened my door and started to get out. I needed to get away so he wouldn't notice the growing bulge in my pants.
"Thanks for lunch, Michael."
"Thanks for going with me, Luke. I really enjoyed it. Maybe we could do it again sometime."
"Uh...sure, I'd like that." I'll be sure to wear a jock strap to control my dick the next time. If there is a next time.
We shook hands, and I walked into the house as he backed the big truck out of my driveway. Tom was curled up on the sofa in the Florida room. He raised on eyelid and looked at me before going back to his afternoon nap,
The cat didn't answer.
(To be continued)
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Some of the characters who play parts in this story were previously introduced in "When Love Comes" (last posted in the College section on Sept. 6, 2001), "Love of a Lifetime" (last posted in the College section on May 19, 2003) or "Finding Family" (last posted in the College section on June 5, 2008). While not necessary, readers may find it useful to read the earlier stories posted on this site. All of the Adams State/Carterville stories listed above as well as my other stories are also posted at www.crvboy.com.
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