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**I want to apologize to all my devoted readers who have been looking forward to the continuation of this story. Real life sometimes takes priority over a fictional one. But I'm back to work on it now so expect more in the coming weeks. Thanks again for reading :)**
Strangers on a Train
by J. A. Adkins
Part 13-The Orchard
The events of the evening melt into common darkness which stalks my dreams before suddenly being torn open by the crimson light. It shines into the murky, sweaty hotel room through the misty glass. I feel my mysterious man on top of me, kissing every inch. The red light returns again, filling the room. Everything is moving so fast. Around the bed, images crash violently against each other. Beautiful visions collide with chilling nightmares. It's the movie of my life being fast-forwarded before my drowsy eyes. Hot, full lips sticky with passion envelop mine. A bitter, sweet tongue massages my own, drawing it into his mouth when the light goes out and black replaces red.
We embrace, holding so close it's like we're trying to become each other. I feel his ready-to-blow rod thrust against the inside of my thighs. There is a jumbled, blind storm of movement. The light returns. My eyes recognize pillows, wet and smelling of sweat. Our sweat. I feel his tongue trace the curves and muscles of my back. His breathing is audible above the shouts of a bloodthirsty lawyer, honking car horns, or the metallic ping of lifesaving machines. Then the light goes out again. The darkness swarms across the room. In that instant I can feel him press against me. A white-hot pain shoots through my body then fades away just as fast. He makes his entrance. The light returns, only this time it is gray and white. Daylight, I think-or suddenly realize-and the remember where I am.
And who I am with.
"Cody...what are you doing?" I ask drowsily, lifting my head off my pillow.
The movement behind me on the narrow bed suddenly stops. The incredible tightness at the entrance to my insides remains, however: the head of his sweet cock gripped by my anal ring. Cody hesitates another moment before he answers. "I thought you might enjoy it."
"But you didn't even ask if I wanted to."
"I thought ya' might, though. Ya' know...because you're horny an' all."
To confirm what he thought I wasn't already aware of, Cody reached over my side, encircling my engorged penis with his slippery fingers. "See?"
I couldn't help but smile again. "Yes, Cody. I see. I was already aware of...That. It happens almost every morning."
"So do ya'?" He pressed forward as subtly as he could. I held my grip on his dick, clasping my muscles on the enveloped head even more. I could feel the younger boy flinch from the new pain.
"No, Cody. I'm sorry. I'm just not in the mood right now."
Cody sighed, "Okay."
When he agreed not to thrust in I relaxed my muscles, allowing him to pull out. I sat up, careful not to bump my head on the bottom rail of the upper bunk, and crawled out of the bed. Looking back down, I could see the disappointed stare in Cody's eyes. I smiled, kissing him lightly on the lips. "Don't worry, kid. I'm sure Jamie will help you out later."
Cody smirked and nodded his head. I noticed, too, the lack of occupance in the upper bunk. I couldn't tell if Darren had slept in the room at all. After the excitement in the Baden household the previous night, it hadn't taken me long to drop completely out of consciousness. I stood staring at the empty bunk, trying to figure out exactly what I was feeling; why I was feeling it; and why I couldn't figure it out. I realized I had been there too long when I felt a tongue I wasn't expecting to feel tickle the tip of a very private place.
I looked down to see Cody smile up at me. "Sorry," he giggled. "I couldn't resist."
"Uh huh," I said, smiling back at him before moving away from the bed. I found the boxers Jake had given me back on the train. "You don't shave yet, do you?" I asked, turning around to face Cody after I had slipped the boxers over my deflating cock.
"I haven't shaved in, like, two days."
Cody rolled onto his stomach, exposing his cute little ass to me. The late morning sunlight caressing his soft, golden skin and shimmering curly hair as it stretched through the window made him look almost breathtaking. "Ya' can use my shower if ya' like. And, I can ask my dad if he has any spare razors."
I nodded my head. "Okay. But I would suggest you put something on. For my sake, anyway."
Cody sat up. "Why? Daddy only said you couldn't touch Jody. He didn't say anything about not touching me."
I laughed. The look on that young, boyish face just then was one I won't ever forget. I found the bathroom easily enough. It was right across the hall from Cody's room. It smelled of roses. Vibrant, healthy roses. I could smell them before I even crossed the padded, narrow hallway. I suddenly realized that the entire house smelled of roses. Every room I had been in smelled exactly the same. The same feeling, the same kind of subtle, kinetic energy which powers the occupants seemed to exist everywhere. Everywhere but Cody's room. There was a different kind of energy there; a different kind of smell. I knew it all too well. I had known it would be that way before I had reached the top of the stairs or Cody had shown me in. it was innocence, burning away one droplet of heated sweat at a time. It was stale. It was musty. It was sexy. It was disgusting.
It reminded me of my life. It made me recall what my life had once been then became one droplet of passion driven sweat at a time. I pondered this as the lukewarm water of the shower splashed coarsely against my face and neck, cascading hurriedly down my naked body. I didn't realize how long I had simply been standing in place when there was a knock at the door. It was Cody's mother, Maryln Baden. Through the opaque plastic curtain decorated with blooming flowers of scarlet and crimson I could make out the shape of her arms as she reached into the bathroom.
"Are you all right in there, dear?" she asked, laying something down on the counter. "You've been in there almost fifteen minutes already."
"Really? Wow. I guess...I...uhh...just lost track of time," I said, trying to cover my nudity already concealed by a rose painted on the shower curtain. "I guess I had almost forgotten what a real shower feels like." It sounded lame, stupid even. It had only been a few days since the whole adventure had started.
"Well," Maryln said, seeming to ignore my comment, "I've left some clean clothes on the counter for ya'. They were Dewey's. Darren told me your size, but this was as close as I could get."
"Thank you," I said, yelling over the curtain.
"And there is a razor there for ya' as well. Cody said you needed a shave."
The tone in her voice almost had me blushing. I swallowed my stomach-turning embarrassment before replying. "Thank you, Mrs. Bayden."
She hummed her response. I heard the door click softly closed and breathed for the first time in over a minute. I focused on what I was doing, finally stepping out of the shower a few minutes later. I couldn't help but stare at myself in the mirror after I shaved. I felt like I had changed so much in the last few days. For one thing, the sight of my own scrawny reflection made me ill. I glanced down at the suddenly under-used parts between my legs. My penis hung over my aching balls in a warm, limp, and shriveled form. With a quiet sigh, I pulled on Jake's boxers, the tattered blue jeans, and the shrunken, faded yellow tee shirt Maryln had left.
A new smell hit my nose when I emerged from the bathroom. I had expected the scent of roses to gently slap me across the face. Instead, it was eggs. I sniffed again. And toast. My stomach reminded me of the last time it had been filled with anything substantial. Both it and I knew that was too long ago.
Downstairs in the kitchen I found Maryln with her back to the doorway, her arms submerged to her elbows in soapy water. A single plate sat on the table in front of me. A serving of eggs as golden as the sun and jelly-covered toast that looked sweeter than any wine I had tasted made my eyes gleam carnivorously.
"About time," Maryln said when she looked over her shoulder at me. "I was about to go up and see if ya' had drown."
I smiled, sitting myself at the table. The late morning sun peaking into the kitchen from the small square window above the sink glinted off the dull, silver blur that was the fork in my hand as I swept it desperately off the table. I stabbed at the still steaming eggs, almost tossing them into my mouth. They needed no salt, no pepper. They were perfect. I could feel my body suddenly come back to life as the first several bites descended into my stomach. I could feel the explosion of protein run in escalating waves as my tongue was massaged by the seasoned, fluffy texture. I moved from the sparse remains of the egg to the wedges of toast sitting on the edge of the cracked, white plate.
Before I was aware of it, or ready for it, the food on the plate was gone. I'd even scooped up the globs of purple grape jelly which had slipped off the bread. Maryln finished with the dishes she was washing at nearly the same time. She turned around, drying her hands with a rose embroidered towel, and smiled at me.
"Enjoy it, huh?"
I nodded my head enthusiastically. "Yes, ma'am. It was very good. Maybe even the best breakfast I've ever had."
Maryln chuckled as she walked away from the sink to a nearby cupboard. "Flattery, my dear boy, will only make me blush and get you nothin' but a smile. But thank ya'." She took out a small glass then set it on the table. "Besides, I'm sure your mother made a better breakfast than this. With more food at that!"
I thought about this for a moment. Not to consider my answer but just to remember as many mornings as I could with my parents. I watched Maryln get a pitcher of orange juice from the refrigerator. "No," I said. "My dad was the cook in our house. But he never made much. Not that I can remember, anyway."
"You talk as if you haven't seen him in a while," she said, pouring the juice into the glass, quickly topping it off.
"I haven't. Both he and my mother died in a car crash last year... About this time actually."
"Oh, I'm sorry." Her voice dropped from a stern, chipper pitch to a somber, consoling tone. "It must be hard for you, then."
I shrugged my shoulders. "Not all the time." I took a sip of the juice-a chug is more like it-before continuing. "My parents and I were never that close. Not as close as they would have liked." I glanced around. "Definitely nothing like your family."
Maryln laughed. "Please, honey. Last night was no special occasion. It isn't a show we put on for special occasions or holidays. That's normal life around here."
"Yeah, but it was great."
Maryln laughed again. "Which part? The hollerin' or the shoutin'?"
I stared at her softly, meeting the hard, curious faze from her deep eyes and then breaking it down to a modest, motherly look filled with absolute tenderness. "All of it. From the introductions around the table to the goodnights amidst the gunfire."
I took another sip of the orange juice. "Honesty is a rare thing. So is courage. I should know...I lack enough of it."
Maryln tilted her head to one side. Her eyes had still not released mine. She started to smile at me. I could see the oncoming sympathetic sentiments approaching her lips as fresh oxygen tickled her vocal chords. But before she could say anything, Dewey Baden marched calmly, yet quickly, into the kitchen. He glanced at his wife then down at me. I was surprised when he addressed me. "Taylor," he said, his voice deep and commanding without being cold or harsh. I couldn't help but smile at the fact he was able to remember my name without Darren here to say it first.
"Ya' need to find somethin' to do with yer time. A couple a' boys from the FBI are on their way up the drive."
Like a happy penis I stood straight and stiff out of my chair in the blink of an eye. "Why?" I asked dumbly.
"I don't know. I reckon' it has somethin' to do with you and Darren's goings on." There was a knock at the front door. It rattled through the empty house. I felt my heart rate jump. Instinctively, now, I asked, "Where's Darren?"
"Out in the orchard with the boys. Heat out the back door and...walk fast," Dewey said ushering me towards his wife who pushed me the rest of the way onto the back stoop.
"Hurry now," Maryln said, her voice soft but steady. I wondered if this was something they were used to as well. From the living room I could hear the front door opening and Dewey's friendly voice greeting the uninvited guests. I took that as my cue, turning down the short steps and starting hastily down the narrow dirt path cutting through the grassy yard to the island of trees a hundred yards away.
It smelled of sweet summer days under those blossom covered branches hanging over the dusty grass. With each soft billow of the breeze that passed between the network of outstretched limbs, I could feel the youth-filled joy that overcame the long avenues of trees leading away from the Baden house. I smiled as I walked, more calmly the wider the gap between myself and that backdoor became, hearing the echoes of years of innocent laughter. Sunlight danced in warm, hazy, spider web patterns across my face. A thought suddenly struck me, like an apple to the head. I realized the orchard around me was probably the most beautiful place I had ever seen. It was heaven.
I laughed. It felt good. I let my heart beat to the splendid rhythm of the waxing afternoon. I even tried not to think about Darren in those strangely joyous and simple moments. And just when I thought I could, I saw him. He appeared in the wake of the dirt that swirled into the air behind a giggling blur of golden, sunlit flesh hurrying away from him. He stopped his pursuit. His eyes locked with mine. I sensed the simple rhythm my heart was following crumble when it skipped a beat. I felt the firestorm of emotions roar back into my body. I could feel myself starting to glare at him. I took a step forward. Darren did the same. We were only a dozen yards apart by now. I took another step and stopped.
My brain sent a charge of energy into the rest of my body, igniting a rapid, fiery pulse of adrenaline to surge into my veins. I turned my head with a quick snap to the left in time to see another of the golden, sunlit blurs charging out of the shadows. The chorus of giggling reached me a split-second before the cry of "Heads Up!" And I only heard that a heartbeat before a sweaty young body collided into my side. The summer day canted at a dizzying angle and speed. In the next heartbeat I could taste the dust kicked up by my heavy fall to the earth.
OUR fall, I guess I should say. I steadied my vision, lifting my head to find the source of the breathless laughter filling my hearing. It was Cody...of course. I was ready to scream; too shout and beat the hell out of him. I felt anger replace the adrenaline. I felt my cheeks blush with embarrassment. Then, I felt myself start to laugh. His pubescent guffaw was absolutely infectious. I laid my head back down, listening to him catch his breath.
"You're...it!" he managed.
"What are we playing?" I asked.
"Strip tag," said a voice much deeper than any of the two twelve years olds' I had met in the last twenty four hours. I turned my head, my vision filling with the silhouetted face of a boy not quite a man. I could make out a smile on his face. It was strange: menacing and, yet, somehow curiously excited. "So take off your shirt or loose your pants."
"Fuck you," I said more bitterly than I had intended. "I'll keep both on, thank you."
Darren shrugged his shoulders. "Fine." He glanced over his shoulder. I followed his gaze hastily with my own eyes. I could feel Cody's lungs working harder as his chest heaved in and out almost frantically against my legs. "Jamie, help Cody." From out of the shadows I saw Jamie walk happily toward the tangled pile which was myself and the always horny Cody Baden. Darren turned away, starting off at a leisurely pace through the rest of the orchard.
"Help Cody with what?" I yelled after him.
"Strip ya', silly," Cody beamed. "Those are the rules."
"If ya' refuse to take one piece of clothing off, you have to take them all off," Jamie added. His face was beaming as well. It was almost scary.
I shook my head, trying to roll onto my stomach and block the already easy access to the front of the jeans Maryln had given me. "But I never said I wanted to play."
I suddenly felt Jamie's breath against the side of my face. It was hot and smelled strangely of cherries. "You never said you didn't," he whispered into my ear before tracing the lobe with the wet tip of his tongue.
I sighed, too audibly. That sort of thing always made me do that. I tried to roll over again, this time without putting much effort into it. Again, Cody had my legs pinned. While Jamie distracted me with his tongue in my ear then on my neck, Cody went to work sucking on my inflating cock through the old denim. I sighed again, louder this time. The boys giggled. Soft hands tickled my waist as the jeans were tugged down. I felt the butter snap free and the zipper fly pulled away. By the time I had managed to gather the strength and nerve to open my eyes, the jeans were being tossed through the air along with my shoes, socks, and shirt.
Jamie looked up at me hungrily. "Let's suck him, " he said to Cody, licking his lips. He reached up for the waistband of my boxers.
"Let's fuck him," Cody said. His brilliant blue eyes sparkled in the band of sunshine that splashed across his face. His tongue touched the tip of my engorged dick through the open fly of my underwear.
"Okay," I started to whisper. Then, a bolt of lightning only I could feel and didn't really exist awakened my brain. "No!" I shouted with a panicked start, pulling my body away from their group. Everything seemed to stop for a moment: the passing breeze; the birds chirping somewhere around the orchard; the sound of us breathing. Then I blinked and saw what the boys were staring at. The world jumped forward to catch back up with itself.
And I realized I was now naked. While I had gotten away from their curious fingers, my boxers had not. A few moments later I found myself sprinting through the lanes of trees bare-ass naked. I was still It; but, I was the one being chased.