This story contains scenes of love and sexual interaction. Much of this involves males with other males. If the reading or possessing of such material as this is illegal in your country, state, province, county, municipality, etc., please leave this site immediately and do not proceed further. If you are under the legal age to read this, please do not do so.

It is not my intention to offend anyone or to get you in trouble.

The author retains all rights to this original story. Please do not publish without explicit authorization from me.

This story is completely fictional. Most of the places mentioned, and none of the characters exist in real life. Some may possess physical or personality characteristics of people I know or have known. But if you see yourself in this story, your imagination is better than mine!

Hi All,

It's good to be back after taking a break. Several of you have written asking whether there would be more adventures of Matt and Jon and their friends and families, so here it is. Now that I'm back to writing, I hope you won't have to wait as long for the next one.

All best, Jon

If you like my story, drop me a line. I'd love to hear from you: seperatepiece@hotmail.com

Matt and Jon

Chapter 32

Shelley and Jane sat at the kitchen table sipping coffee.  They’d just gotten back from shopping around for Jane’s wedding dress and accessories.

“Men have no idea what we go through.  All they have to do is go to the tux rental shop and Cy does the rest for them right down to the shoes!”  Shelley said, shaking her head.

“Oh, don’t even mention shoes!”  Jane laughed.

“Have you and Tom thought any more about the date?”  Shelley asked, regarding Jane over the rim of her cup.

“Well, we want to do it as soon as possible, but it depends on the house closing I guess.  Tom and I are both taking two weeks off to move in and get settled, but we’re still not sure when we’ll be able to take possession yet.”

“I just wondered.  We have a lot to plan.  Even though you don’t want a big formal wedding, there are still details to nail down, dear.”

“I know, but we’re determined to keep it simple.  We both have colleagues from work, but not too many friends.  We both just moved to the area, so we don’t really know many people anyway.  I want it to be more of a family affair.  I know the boys would be just as happy if we had pizza.”

Shelly laughed.  “Yeah, the young boys and the old boys too.”

At school, the bell had just rung for the end of the day.  Matt and Jon were already out on the steps when Chet emerged from the building.

“Hey Chet.  How’s Dave doing?”  Matt asked.

“Oh, he’s doing great.  The doctor says he can go home tomorrow.”  Chet beamed.

“That’s great!  Do you want to come over to the sweet shop with us?”  Jon asked his friend.  “We’re just waiting for enough of us to get the big table.” 

Chet smiled.  “Yeah, sure.  I’m going to swing by the hospital, but I could come for a little while.  I haven’t seen much of you guys lately.  It’ll be nice to catch up.”

Eventually Stacey, Trevor, Andy, Marla, Ryan and Eric showed up and they were all seated around the large round table in the back of the sweet shop that was reserved for large groups.  Chet shared the news about Dave’s homecoming with the gang.

Jon told him that he and his mother would bring dinner over to the apartment the following night, but then he had a thought.

“Chet, what time are they discharging him?”

“I’m not sure, but he thinks it will be late morning, why?”

Jon looked perplexed.  “We’ll be in school then, what will you do for lunch?”

Chet put a hand on Jon’s shoulder.  “It’s really nice of you to worry, but we’ll be okay.  I brought some cold cuts and salad ingredients over to the apartment yesterday, and he had some cans of soup.  We’ll be fine.”

Jon relaxed and smiled at Chet.  “I should have known you’d take care of him.”

Chet looked around the table.  “Don’t worry about that,” Chet said with a wink, ”So, what is everyone doing for Thanksgiving this year?  Dave is coming to my house, and my aunt and two cousins are coming.”

Ryan spoke up.  “We really hoped to have it in the new house, but the old couple that lives there now is taking forever to sign the final papers and move out, so we’re going to still be at Jonny’s I guess.”

“Yeah,” Matt added, “and my family is coming too, and Todd and his mom of course.”

Eric looked wistfully at Ryan.  “I wish I could be there, but my mom is having my aunt and uncle and my cousins from New Jersey over, and she insisted I stay home.  We eat early though, so maybe I can come over later.”

Ryan gave him a pat on the leg under the table.  “You’ll have fun.  You told me you like your cousins.”

Trevor sighed.  “I know how you feel.  We’re going to my aunt’s house in Connecticut this year, and I wish I could be with Stacey too.”

Stacey put an arm around him.  “That’s okay hon.  You can come over to my house on Friday for leftovers.  We always have tons left.  I think for once my mother will be happy about your appetite.”

Andy and Marla were pleased that their families were combining over at Marla’s house.  Their parents had known each other socially, but since they had officially become a couple, they began to see each other a lot more.

Ryan leaned back in his chair.  “Joel’s family is taking him to Florida for the week.  You should see the two of them… ‘Oh Todd, I don’t know how I’ll live without you!’  You’d think he was going to Siberia for ten years instead of his grandparent’s condo in West Palm Beach for a week.”

“Don’t be mean, dear.  I’d go nuts if I didn’t see you for a week.”  Eric gently rebuked.

Ryan squeezed Eric’s hand under the table.  “Yeah, well, at least he gets to miss a few days of school.”

“Hey, where are those guys?”  Andy asked of no one in particular.

Ryan answered.  “Todd had a dentist appointment after school, and Joel went home to finish packing.  They’re leaving this evening.”

The door opened, and Jamie walked in and scanned the room.  Matt waved at him, and he came and joined them.

“Hey guys, what’s up?”

Chet answered, “We were just talking about our Thanksgiving plans.  What are you doing?”

Before he could answer, Jon added, “You’re welcome at our house if you don’t have anything planned.”

Jamie smiled.  “Thanks Jon.  I’d love that, but mom and I are going to Alan and Bennet’s.  Dad doesn’t know yet.”  He said, as his expression turned serious.

“Is your mom going to tell him?”  Matt asked.

“Yeah, but not until we’re halfway out the door.”  Jamie said with a chuckle.  “No, seriously, Alan told mom to ask him too, but I don’t think he’ll want to come.  Anyway, it should be fun.  Bennet wants me to come early and help him cook.  He says mom and Alan can watch the football game and stay out of our way.”  He beamed proudly.

“Sounds great, Jamie.  I hope your dad doesn’t freak out or anything.”  Jon put in a little nervously.

“Well, if he does, mom is prepared to stand up to him this time.  She already told him about meeting him, and he was pissed, but she put her foot down.  He tried to tell her that he didn’t want me around him, and she went ballistic on him.  She promised me she wouldn’t let that happen, and she stuck to her word.”

“That’s cool.  I’m sure you’ll have a great time with them.”  Jon said, smiling warmly at Jamie.

Their sodas and snacks arrived, and they sipped and ate companionably.  Eventually Chet left to visit Dave, and the rest of them started to go their various ways.

Jamie grabbed the check when it came.  “Alan gave me some money to do whatever I want with, and I want to treat my friends.”

They all protested, but Jamie wouldn’t hear of it.  “You guys have no idea how happy it makes me to be able to do it.”  They all gave in good naturedly.  When it was just Jon, Matt, Jamie, Ryan and Eric left, Ryan suggested they walk home via the new house so he could show it to them.  It was only a block out of the way, so they all agreed.  When they reached Tucker Avenue, Ryan pointed out the house.  It was the largest one on the block, and had a nice sized front yard.

“Cool.”  Matt enthused, as he tried to see some of the back yard without trespassing.

The five of them checking out the house, attracted the attention of an elderly woman at the window.  She opened the door a crack.

“What do you boys want?”

Ryan started up the walk to explain, and she told him to stay where he was.

“I’m sorry ma’am, my name is Ryan O’Reilly.  My parents are buying this house and I just wanted to show it to my friends.  We’ll leave if we’re disturbing you.”

The old woman’s face relaxed into a smile, as she opened the door and came out on the porch.  “So many people came to see the house, but I remember your family.”  She gestured for the boys to come into the yard as she stepped out the door.  “I was hoping your parents would be the ones to buy it, you see, my husband and I raised three boys here too.”

Ryan shook the proffered hand carefully.   It seemed so fragile in his.  “It’s nice to meet you, ma’am.”

She smiled back at him.  “Please, call me Nell.  Would you like to show your friends the inside?”

“Well…if you’re sure it wouldn’t be too much trouble…”

She waved dismissively and herded them toward the front door.  When they were all in the kitchen, she began rummaging around in the cupboards.  “I know there’s a box of cookies in here somewhere...”

“Oh, please…Nell, don’t go to any trouble.  We just came from the sweetshop anyway.”  Ryan was naturally polite, and he found it difficult to call an older woman he’d just met by her first name.

She smiled at him.  “My boys loved that place.  Did you know there used to be a pin ball machine in there?  It was all mechanical, no screen like nowadays.”

Matt spoke up.  “My dad told me about it.  He and my mom used to go there after school when they went to Jefferson.”

“Who are your parents dear?”  Nell asked with raised eyebrows.

“Bill and Ann Barker.”  Matt answered.

Nell’s face lit up.  “They were both in Jimmy’s class.  He was at their wedding, in fact.  I remember they were both here for the party Jimmy had the day after the prom.”

The boys followed her into the living room, where she began riffling through an old photo album.  “Here it is.”  She said triumphantly when she’d found what she was looking for.  She held the book for the boys to see the photograph of a group of teens with little cups of punch in the very room they were standing in at the moment, smiling for the camera.

Matt laughed.  “Wow!  Check out mom’s hair.”

Nell chuckled.  “She was very fashionable for the time.  At least she was born too late for the dreaded beehive that I had to maintain.  When Jimmy comes for Thanksgiving, I’ll ask him to make a copy of this for your parents.”

“Thanks.  I’m sure they’d love it.”  Matt assured her.

She gave them the tour of the upstairs bedrooms, and then showed them the finished basement that used to be a rec room for her boys.  When they were all back upstairs, the boys thanked her for the tour and said they should get going.

“We’ve taken up enough of your time already.”  Ryan said apologetically.

Nell smiled.  “Oh no, I enjoyed having you all here.  We have so many memories here, it’s going to be hard to leave, but it’s too much for us to maintain anymore.  We just wanted to have one more Thanksgiving here with the boys and their families.  Anyway, this house was made for a family like yours.  I hope you’ll all be very happy here.”

Ryan couldn’t resist the impulse to hug her as they stood in the entrance way.  “I’m sure we’ll love it as much as you and your family did.”

Matt smiled at Jon and shook his head.  He could have predicted the tear forming in his boyfriend’s eye.

They all said their goodbyes and Nell assured them they could move in to the house in time for Christmas, as they were spending the holiday in California with her son’s family, and they wanted to have everything settled by then.  As they walked home, Jon, having composed himself, commented on the visit.

“It must be nice for Nell to know that a loving family is going to be living there again.”  He said.
Eric giggled, and leered at Ryan.  “Some of it may not be the kind of lovin’ she’s thinking of.”  He said, wiggling his eyebrows.

Ryan punched him lightly on the arm.  “Geez, you sure know how to ruin a Hallmark moment.”  He laughed.  “I’ll bet she wouldn’t mind.  She seems cool for an older lady.”

When they turned on to Pine Street, Jon was the first to notice Sam’s VW in the driveway.  He let out a whoop and ran the remaining half block with the rest of them on his heels.  They burst into the kitchen door to find Sam and Shelley sipping coffee at the kitchen table.

“Sam!”  Jon yelled, as he ran across the kitchen and grabbed his big brother in a hug.

Sam returned the affection.  “Jonny, I missed you so much.”

After a long hug, Sam held Jon at arm’s length.  “Geez Jonny, you look great.  You must have lost at least five more pounds since I’ve seen you, and you’re getting some definition.”

Jon blushed at the comment, but felt very proud.  “We’ve been using your weights whenever we can.”

“Well it’s sure paying off. “  Sam said as he messed up his brother’s hair.

Matt hugged Sam as well.  “You’re filling out pretty well too.”  Sam told him.

After Ryan, Eric and Jamie had all gotten similar greetings, they sat down at the kitchen table, while Shelley made hot chocolate for the boys.

“So I was just asking mom if it would be okay for my roommates Jack and Corey to come to Thanksgiving dinner.”  Sam related.

Jon smiled.  “That would be awesome.  I’d love to meet them, but don’t they have any family?”

Sam sighed.  “Corey’s mom and dad and sister are going to Florida, but Corey wanted to be with Jack.  Jack’s family situation is somewhat…strained.  His father caught them in the act.  He said he felt obligated to pay for his college, but after that he’s on his own.  Corey isn’t even welcome in their house.”

“Wow.  That must really be hard.  What about his mom?”  Ryan asked.

“Well, she’s not exactly thrilled with the idea and keeps hoping he’ll change someday, but she made it clear that Jack was always welcome at home no matter what his father says.  Jack hopes they’ll come around someday.”

Shelley brought the cocoa to the table.  “Well, it might be a little crowded, but they’re welcome here.”

“Thanks mom.  I know you’ll like them.”

Jon took a sip of cocoa and thought how lucky he was to have a family like his.  He knew he had a lot to be thankful for this year.

Just as they finished their cocoa, LittleTom came through the door, dropped his book bag and strode purposefully toward Sam, who stood up in time to swing him off his feet and give him a hug.

“When did you get here?”  LittleTom asked excitedly.

“Just about an hour ago.”  Sam answered, beaming at him.

Shelley brought LittleTom a mug of cocoa, and they chatted away about what was going on in their lives.  Jon had emailed Sam all about Dave, so he was relieved that he was well enough to go home.  Ryan and LittleTom filled him in on the new house, and Jamie couldn’t wait to tell him all about Alan seeing his mother again.  Sam told them all about dorm life, and his upcoming midterm exams.

Shelley had some shopping to do and left the boys doing their homework in the dining room, with Sam engrossed in a movie in the den.  They finished working and joined Sam in the den just as the film was ending.  Sam clicked off the TV and smiled at them.

“So who else is coming for Thanksgiving?”  He asked, as the boys lounged around on the chairs and sofas.

Jon ticked off the list on his fingers.  “Let’s see, in addition to those who live here at the moment, there’s Matt and his parents, and Todd and his mom, and now Jack and Corey.  Wow.  That’s…14 people!  I guess we’ll need to put the leaves in the table and get a bigger turkey this year.”

“This is going to be great.”  LittleTom squeaked.  “Our first holiday with Todd and Mom.”

“They’re not married yet, so you should still call her Mrs. Austin, technically.”  Ryan reminded him.
“Nah, It’s just a formality.  I feel like we’re already a family.”  He smiled contentedly.

Jon knew exactly what he meant.  He felt the same way about his “Aunt Jane” and his “Cousin Todd.”  While the others continued chatting, Jon was lost in thought.  Matt waved a hand in front of his face.

“Earth to Jon.”  He teased, when Jon failed to respond to a question.

“Huh?  Oh, sorry…I was just thinking of something.  You know the hymn we sing around Thanksgiving time, Now Thank We All Our God?  I think it would be cool to sing it instead of saying grace.  We could practice it as a surprise for the grownups.”

“Um, Jon.  Don’t take this the wrong way, but a group of teenaged guys singing church hymns isn’t exactly the dictionary definition of ‘cool.’”  Matt chided.

“I thought you liked choir…and besides, you’re my boyfriend and you’re supposed to support me in all my silly ideas.  I don’t know if I can convince anyone else to do it, but you HAVE to!”  Jon grinned as he folded his arms triumphantly against his chest.

Matt chuckled and shrugged his shoulders.  “Whatever you say dear.”

The others laughed.  When Sam agreed to sing bass, LittleTom reluctantly agreed to sing the treble part since he already knew the melody pretty well from church.  Ryan begged off, saying that he had absolutely no musical aptitude, and would just mess it all up.

“Jon,” Matt furrowed his brow, “if Sam sings bass, what will I sing?”

“It’s pitched fairly low for congregational singing, like most of the hymns, so you can sing tenor and I’ll sing the alto part.  It should sound really good.”

Jon went over to the piano and opened the bench.  Finding his hymnal, he consulted the index of first lines, and opened it to the appropriate page.  He sat down and began playing the hymn while sight singing the alto part.  Eventually the others gathered around, peering over his shoulder.  Sam picked up the bass part right away and LittleTom joined in tentatively on the melody.  Matt tried to follow what he thought was the tenor line, but he’d definitely have to have Jon teach it to him.  Jamie, Ryan and Eric listened thinking that it sounded pretty good for a first attempt.

When they’d sung the first verse, Jon stopped them.  “Okay, let’s go through the tenor part.  Here’s your starting note, Matt.  Don’t worry about the words, just sing it on ‘la’ for now.”

After several attempts, Matt began to get the hang of it.  He was learning a little bit about reading music in choir, and he was a fast rote learner.  After Jon was satisfied that Matt could hold his own on the part, he had them all sing it together.  When they had finished, the three boys on the couch applauded enthusiastically.  LittleTom turned to them and gave a mock bow.  Jon clapped his hands for attention.

“Okay, okay, back to work.  No breath between ‘God,’ and ‘with’ for starters.  I’ll give you some more phrasing when we have copies to mark.  LittleTom, try and sound a little more…elegant, okay?  I’ll work with you on diction later.”

LittleTom whined.  “How much do we have to practice this?  It’s just for our parents.”

Jon patted him on the back.  “Come on, you want it to be good, don’t you?  Just one more short session when I make some copies, I promise.”

LittleTom sighed resignedly.  “Sounded pretty good to me, but okay.”

Jon went back to the music.  “Now, we have to make sure we’re not drowning LittleTom out on the melody, so keep your ears open and hold back a little.  The blend is pretty good, but it could be better.  It’s really important to listen to each other.  Now that we more or less know the notes, let’s try it without the piano, and when I hold my hand out, that means to sing through the phase without breathing, okay?”

After an a cappella run through, Sam sensed that Jon wanted to keep going.  “Uh, Jonny, that’s enough for now.  We’re kind of leaving the others out.”

Jon blushed and giggled.  “Sorry, I know I get carried away.  It sounds really good guys.  Thanks for indulging me.”

Matt gestured toward the others.  “Hey thank them.  I have no choice, remember?”

Jon kissed him on the cheek.  “Nope, you don’t.”

They decided to watch some TV until it was time for Matt, Jamie and Eric to go.  It was the last school night before Thanksgiving.  They had Friday off as well.  With a four day weekend coming up, they knew they’d get a sleepover in before school started again the following Monday.

They heard Shelley’s car in the driveway, and all went to help her with the groceries.  Jon was carrying in the last bag.

“Mom, what are we having for dinner tomorrow?  I promised Chet and Dave I’d help you make extra to bring over for them.”

“I hadn’t really thought that far in advance.”  Shelly laughed.  “Is there anything in particular you think they’d like?”

“Well, since I’m helping, I’d really like to learn to make your lasagna.  It’s the best I’ve ever had.”

Shelley smiled at the compliment.  “I think I can arrange that.”

When all the groceries had been put away, Eric said he should be getting home.  Jamie and Matt reluctantly agreed as they all went to the hallway to get their bags and coats.  The two couples shared hugs while Jamie looked on.  When they were finished, Jon turned to Jamie and put his arms around him.

“I didn’t want you to feel left out.”  He said, releasing him.

Jamie smiled at him.  “Thanks Jon.  That felt good.”  He said as he put on his coat.

The next morning at school seemed interminable.  When the lunch bell finally rang, Todd walked to the cafeteria to meet up with his friends.  He had to take his mind off of missing Joel.  He’d only left the day before and already Todd had missed him terribly.  It cheered him up to see Jon, Matt, Ryan and Eric already at the table with their lunches.  He got a tray and got on line behind Trevor.

“Hey Todd.  How’s it going?”  Trevor asked.

“fine, I guess.”

Trevor nodded in sympathy.  “Hey, I know how you feel.  I’m only going to Connecticut for Thanksgiving day and I know I’ll miss Stacey too.”

Todd smiled weakly.  “Yeah, it seems like forever until next Wednesday.”

Trevor put a hand on Todd’s shoulder.  “Hey, tomorrow will be fun with your whole family.  You’ll have a good time.”

Todd brightened at the thought.  “Yeah, It’s just that it would be so perfect if Joel could be there too.”

“I know what you mean, but there’ll be plenty of other occasions.  Joel’s Jewish, so chances are his family doesn’t have any plans for Christmas.  I’ll bet he spends the whole day at your new place, if not the night too.”  Trevor said with a grin.

Todd’s face lit up.  “Thanks Trev.  I feel a lot better now that I have something to look forward to.  I guess I’m just being silly, but I DO miss him.”

Trevor smiled.  “Yeah, I guess I’ll live through one day too.”

After lunch, the day seemed to move more quickly, and soon the final bell signaled the end of school for four days.  The mood in the hallways was jubilant, as they all collected their coats from their lockers.  In most cases the teachers had been lenient and hadn’t assigned too much work over the holiday.  They realized that some families travel to see relatives, and that there wouldn’t be much time for anything serious.

They broke up in to smaller groups to do various things, and soon Matt, Jon, Ryan and Todd were headed to Pine Street.  Eric went home to help his mother get the house ready for company, but was going to come over for awhile after dinner.

LittleTom was already there when they arrived and Shelley came home a few minutes later.

“Let me know when you want to start cooking, mom.”  Jon said anxiously.

“Okay, let me take my coat off first.  Where’s Sam?”

LittleTom indicated a note on the table.  “He’s out somewhere with Sara, and he’s bringing her home for dinner.”

“Oh, that’s nice.  She’s such a sweet girl.”  Shelly mused as she went to hang up her coat.

“I hope she likes lasagna.”  Jon said, anxious to get started with the cooking.

Shelley laughed from the hallway.  “Okay Jonny, I get the hint.  I’ll be right in as soon as I freshen up a bit.  Give everyone some soda or something in the meantime.”

Jon had fun learning how to make the secret family sauce, and combine all the other ingredients.  When it came time to assemble the final product, he and Shelley each took a Pyrex dish.

“Okay, now just watch me, and do what I do.  I’ll make ours and you make Chet and Dave’s.”

Jon frowned.  “Mom, it’s my first one.  Maybe you should make theirs.  I want it to look nice.”

“I’ll tell you what.  We’ll each make one and if one looks better than the other, that’s the one we’ll take to them.  Okay?”

Jon was pleased with that, and while they put together the two lasagnas, Ryan started the salad while Matt and LittleTom began cleaning a mountain of string beans.

When the lasagnas went into the oven, Jon joined in on the string beans while Shelley helped Ryan with the salad.  Everything was ready when Shelley peeked in the oven and pronounced them done.  Jon decided that his effort looked good enough to take over to Dave’s, and he carefully put a layer of aluminum foil over it and packed it in a box for transport along with portions of salad and beans.

They heard Dan’s car in the driveway.  As he came to the door, Shelley greeted him with a kiss.

“While you still have your coat on, would you mind taking Jonny and Matt over to Dave’s apartment with dinner for he and Chet?”

Dan looked at the two boys with their coats on, holding the box of food.  “Sure.  Aren’t you two coming?”  He asked Ryan and LittleTom.

“Well, it’s his first day home.  I don’t think we should overwhelm them.”  Ryan answered for both of them.

Jon smiled.  “I’ll tell them you guys helped cook.”

On the way over, Matt called to let them know they were on the way, and Chet met them at the door.  He invited them in to say hello to Dave who was propped up on the couch.

“Hey guys.  We really appreciate this.  It’s one less thing to worry about.”  Dave said, wincing as he stood to greet them.

“Dave, you didn’t have to get up.”  Jon looked horrified.

Dave chuckled.  “Yes I did.  I have to get to the table.  Whatever is in that box smells fantastic.”

Jon blushed.  “Well, it’s my first attempt at lasagna but I think it came out pretty good if I do say so myself.”  He said as he set it on the table and removed the foil.  “There’s green beans and salad too.  Matt, Ryan and LittleTom made them.”

Chet pulled out a chair for Dave, and got some plates and silverware from the kitchen.  “Hey, why don’t you guys stay and help us eat it?”

“Nah, Dad’s waiting for us in the car.  We’re having dinner at my house tonight.  Sam is bringing Sara to dinner, and Matt’s staying over.”  Jon answered with a serene smile.

Chet walked them to the door.  “Thanks guys.  It looks really good.  Tomorrow we’re going to my house for Thanksgiving, and Dave is doing better than we expected, so you really don’t have to go to the trouble of cooking for us.  I think we’ll be alright.”

Jon regarded him dubiously.  “Well, I’ll call you on Friday and see how it’s going.”

Matt grinned and rolled his eyes.  He knew that Jon’s nurturing instincts couldn’t be put off that easily.  He put his hands on Jon’s shoulders and steered him toward the car.

By the time they got back, Sara and Sam were setting the table.  Tom had gotten home from work, and Jane and Todd had come for dinner.  They all enjoyed the meal.  It was nice to get to know Sara a little better.  She and Sam had only become serious right before they left for school.  She told them about her first semester.  Matt and Jon enjoyed watching the two of them exchange little glances and smiles.  Matt wondered if he and Jon were that obvious.

After dinner, Sara began clearing the table.  “You guys did the cooking, so it’s only fair that Sam and I do the dishes.”

Sam was only too happy to be volunteered and set about helping her.

Dan got up from the table.  “I’ll make the coffee.”  He said, heading to the kitchen.

When they finally left the table after dessert and coffee, Sam said he should be getting Sara home.  Sara thanked them all for a great meal.

“Thank you for having me over on such short notice.  I was a little worried when Sam invited me without asking.”  She said to Shelley.

Shelley smiled warmly.  “All the boys know that their friends are welcome in our home and at our table anytime, dear.  I hope you’ll come again before you go back to school.”

Jon walked them to the door.  “Mom’s right Sara.  I’m really glad you came.”

Sara leaned in and kissed him on the cheek.  “Thanks Jonny.  I had a really good time.”

Sam held her coat for her, and they headed out the door.  Jon joined the others upstairs.  Todd was at the computer reading an email from Joel, while the others were sprawled around Jon’s room either reading or looking absently at the TV.  Todd’s fingers flew over the keyboard as he answered Joel.  When he’d sent it, he closed his account and joined the others.

“Joel says hi to everyone.”  He said as he slouched at the end of the bed.  “He said he spent the whole day in the pool, and lying in the sun.  His grandparents are taking him to a fancy restaurant later.”

“Sounds nice.”  Matt said, glancing out the window at the falling snowflakes.  “I’m glad he’s having a good time while we’re suffering.”

Jon put an arm around him.  “I’ll keep you warm, and no restaurant can come close to my mom’s lasagna.  I’d say you have it pretty good.”  He said with a squeeze.

Todd looked at them and sighed.  “I know I should be glad he’s having a nice vacation, but it sort of sounds like he doesn’t even miss me.”

Ryan shook his head.  “Oh come on, Todd.  I heard him before he left.  I’ll bet he’s just trying to put on a brave face.”

“Maybe.”  Todd looked doubtful.

Jane called from downstairs for someone to tell Todd it was time to go.  LittleTom relayed the message, and Todd reluctantly went downstairs.  The others came down too.  They were playing cards in the den when Sam finally came home from Sara’s house.

“What took you so long?  She only lives six blocks away.”  Jon asked.

“I, uh, walked her to the door, and her parents were out.”  Sam answered sheepishly.  His face colored slightly as a broad grin crept across his face.

Jon laughed.  “Well, aren’t YOU the cat who swallowed the canary!”  He exclaimed gleefully.

Sam studied the cards he’d just been dealt.  “A gentleman never kisses and tells.”

“You don’t have to.  You face is telling the whole story.  It’s also telling me you did a lot more than just kiss.”  Jon teased.

“Jonny, knock it off.  I don’t pry into your private life.”  Sam snorted.

“Sure you do, but I’ll stop.  I think she’s really sweet Sam.”  Jon said as he discarded two cards from his hand.

After they’d played for awhile, Jon stretched and yawned.  “Matt, I’m really tired.  You ready for bed?”

Matt agreed and got to his feet.  Sam pulled out the sofa bed and went to find some sheets and a pillow, as Ryan and LittleTom were sharing his old room.  When Jon closed his bedroom door, he took Matt in his arms and kissed him deeply.

“I’m not really all that tired.”  He said, when they broke the kiss.

“Me either.”  Matt whispered as he felt his boyfriend’s erection press against his own.

They undressed each other slowly and moved to the bed.  They clung together for awhile, rubbing their hands all over each other’s bodies.  Jon gradually moved down to Matt’s cock and took it into his warm mouth.  Matt moaned as Jon tenderly licked and sucked his way down the shaft.  He stopped when he felt Matt was close.

“Oh no you don’t.”  Jon scolded.  “You know what I want.”

Matt smiled as Jon retrieved the lube and handed it to him.  Matt didn’t need any further encouragement as he went about preparing his lover.  He entered him slowly.  It had been awhile since they had had the opportunity to make love, and he didn’t want to hurt him.  Once he was in, they shared a passionate kiss before Matt began slowly sliding in and out.

Matt was determined to make it last as long as possible.  By the time he was reaching the point of no return, he heard Jon moaning softly beneath him.  He felt Jon’s muscles contracting on him, milking him.  When their ecstasy finally began to subside, they lay together in each other’s arms, catching their breath.

“I love you so much.”  Matt whispered fervently in Jon’s ear.

Jon began to cry softly in Matt’s embrace.  “I love you too.”  He managed to whisper back as he buried his head in Matt’s neck. 

Neither one of them wanted to move, but once their exertions ceased, they began to feel the chill in the air.  They both believed in conserving energy, and usually kept the heat fairly low.  They cleaned up and pulled the covers up around their necks and resumed their cuddling.

Sam found them in each other’s arms when he gently woke them the next morning.

“You guys look so comfy, I hate to wake you, but we’ve got to get the leaves in the table and help mom.”

The boys yawned and stretched while Sam sat on the bed talking about all they had to do.

“Sam, do you think you could, uh, leave so we can get up?  It’s a little… embarrassing.”  Jon nodded at the two tents in the covers and went a little pink.

Sam realized that they were naked under the covers and laughed.  “Okay you horndogs, but no foolin’ around.  We’ve got work to do.”  He got up and left the room.

The boys shared a quick kiss and headed for the shower with their morning erections leading the way.  They couldn’t resist a little quick relief in the shower, but they figured that since they showered together, they were saving time anyway.  They dressed quickly and headed downstairs for a quick bowl of cereal.  They knew there’d be mountains of food later, and neither felt the need for an elaborate breakfast.

“Matt, I hope I can control myself.  I love all that food so much.”

“Well, you’ve been so good.  You deserve a treat.  Just go easy on the mashed potatoes and stuffing.  You know, just take a reasonable portion and savor it instead of seconds and thirds.”

Jon got a faraway look on his face.  “…and the sweet potato casserole with the marsh mellows melting all over the top…”

“Again, have a little and take small bites.  My mom is making the pumpkin pie with artificial sweetener, so you can have some of that too.”

Jon smiled at Ann’s thoughtfulness.  “That’s sweet of her…literally.”  He said with a chuckle.

Matt rubbed Jon’s knee under the table.  “If you get really tempted, just think about last night.”  He said and wiggled his eyebrows.

“Matt, that was so beautiful.”

“…and,” Matt continued.  “If you’re a good boy at the dinner table, I’ll make sure you get your reward in bed tonight.”

“Ummmmm, who needs food!”

Shelley came in just as they were finishing breakfast and sent the boys to get the turkey out of the basement refrigerator.  She was mixing the stuffing by the time they managed to lug it up the stairs.

“Wow, this is one huge bird!”  Jon exclaimed as they hefted it into the sink.

Shelley laughed.  “I hope everyone brings their appetite or we’ll be eating turkey for a week.  Go and see if Sam and dad need help with the table extensions, and round up some more chairs.  The folding ones are in the basement somewhere.  Oh, and when I get the turkey in the oven, I’d appreciate some help peeling potatoes and yams.”

“Sure mom.  Are we having creamed onions this year?  We could help peel them too.”

“Thanks Jonny, but I got frozen ones this time.  They’re really just as good, and a LOT less work.  It’s the home made cream sauce that counts anyway.  Ann is making pies and Jane is bringing salad, so we’re in pretty good shape.”

They went in to the dining room where Sam and Dan had the table pulled apart, and helped them steady the panels as they got them into place.

As they brought the second load of chairs up from the basement, Matt asked where Tom, Ryan and LittleTom were.

“Oh, they’re over at Jane and Todd’s apartment.  They went shopping for salad ingredients and a few last minute things, and then they were going to help with the salad.  Tom and Jane thought it would be nice if they spent some time together as a family today.”  Dan answered.

“Cool.”  Matt commented, as they headed for the kitchen to help Shelley with some of the more mundane culinary tasks.

Over at the apartment, Tom and his sons had just arrived carrying sacks of veggies.  “I think we managed to get everything on your list.”  Tom said, as he set a bag on the counter.  “This is going to be some salad.  Four kinds of lettuce, tomatoes, radishes, scallions, toasted almonds…”

“Well, since that’s all we’re bringing, I wanted it to be special.”  Jane said as she went about unpacking it all.

Soon the boys were put to work slicing and chopping.  Todd felt his phone vibrating in his pocket, and flipped it open to read the text message.

He grinned at the phone.  “It’s from Joel!”

Everyone laughed.  “No shit!”  Ryan exclaimed, forgetting that Jane was in the room.  “Uh, sorry…mom.”

“Well, it’s not as though I’ve never heard the word before…and it WAS funny.  That’s the tenth text from Joel today.”  Jane said, shaking her head.

Todd was busy answering the message and missed all the humor at his expense.  When the salad was finished, they carried it out to Tom’s van and were on their way. 

When they arrived, Shelley was in the kitchen and Dan and Sam were watching the football game in the den.  Ryan went and joined them while Jon motioned for LittleTom and Sam to join him upstairs with Matt.  Once the four were in Jon’s room, he closed the door and passed out music sheets to each of them with the phrase markings drawn in where he wanted them.  The boys gathered around as Jon consulted a pitch pipe and gave them all their starting notes.  He and Sam would have had no trouble figuring out their pitches from just the tonic of the key, which would have been more professional, but he didn’t have time to teach Matt and LittleTom about thirds and fifths.

Jon told them which verses should be loud, and which should be sung softly.  The read through all three verses, and by the last one, it began to sound very good as they listened and adjusted naturally to each other.

“Guys, it sounds really good.  Thanks for doing this.  I know the grownups are going to love it.”  Jon said as he hugged each one of them.

“Sure Jonny.  Besides, I have to admit, it’s kinda fun.”  LittleTom said with a giggle.

Todd was helping Shelley and Jane set the table when they came downstairs.  The doorbell rang, and Sam knew it must be his roommates and went to let them in.  He opened the door to find Jack and Cory each carrying a gallon jug in their arms.  Sam knew immediately what was in them.

“Hey guys, I see you stopped at the farm store.  You didn’t have to do that.”  Sam said, as he took the jugs of fresh apple cider from them so they could take off their coats.  He brought them into the dining room to introduce them to everyone.

“This is Jack and Cory, everyone.  This is my mom, and that’s my brother Jonny and his boyfriend Matt, and this is Todd.  He’s going to be my cousin when his mom marries my uncle.”  Sam explained.

He took them through to the den and introduced him to the rest of the crowd just as Ann and Bill came in the kitchen door, carrying several pies.  Shelley took the turkey out of the oven and checked it with the meat thermometer.

“Perfect!”  She exclaimed, and she covered it with foil to rest before carving.

She called everyone to the table, and the boys began relaying the various bowls of food from the kitchen.  Dan came in with the turkey, and expertly carved it, setting the meat onto two platters for white and dark meat, while Shelley made gravy in the roasting pan.

When they were all seated around the table, Dan looked around the room.

“Does anyone want to say grace?”

Jon stood up.  “Well, Sam, LittleTom, Matt and I have prepared something if that’s okay.”

Dan nodded and the four of them made their way to the head of the table, taking their folded music out of their pockets.  No one but Ryan knew what to expect as they waited for them to begin.  Jon gave the pitches and when they all indicated they were ready; he nodded his head to start them, just as they’d practiced.

Now thank we all our God, with heart and hands and voices,
Who wondrous things has done, in Whom this world rejoices;
Who from our mothers’ arms has blessed us on our way
With countless gifts of love, and still is ours today.

O may this bounteous God through all our life be near us,
With ever joyful hearts and blessèd peace to cheer us;
And keep us in His grace, and guide us when perplexed;
And free us from all ills, in this world and the next!

All praise and thanks to God the Father now be given;
The Son and Him Who reigns with Them in highest Heaven;
The one eternal God, whom earth and Heaven adore;
For thus it was, is now, and shall be evermore.

When they’d finished, there was silence at the table. 

“Amen.”  Jon added after a brief pause.

Jane was the first to speak.  “Boys, that was beautiful.  When did you have time to rehearse?”

LittleTom shrugged.  “I already knew the melody, and it didn’t take long to polish up.”

Everyone told them how much they liked it as they sat down and began circulating the food around the table.

“Would you be willing to sing that at our wedding?”  Jane asked the four of them.

Jon seemed puzzled.  “Wouldn’t you rather have something else?  I always think of that as a Thanksgiving hymn.”

 “I think it’s perfect for our situation.”  Jane picked up LittleTom’s discarded copy and perused the words.  “Who from our mothers’ arms has blessed us on our way with countless gifts of love?  Or here in the second verse: ‘…and frees us from all ills in this world and the next?’  That made me think of John and Cindy and how they’ll always be a part of us.  Also it would solve a problem for us.  Ryan being the oldest is going to be Tom’s best man, and Todd is giving away the bride, but we had nothing for LittleTom to do in the ceremony.  He’s too old to be a ring bearer.” 

Jon thought about it.  “I see what you mean.  Actually it’s we Americans who co-opted it for Thanksgiving anyway.  The original hymn was written in German.  The music is a chorale melody by Johann Crüger, though this harmonization is by Mendelssohn.”

“Thanks professor.  Why don’t you eat your dinner before it gets cold?”  Matt said playfully as he handed Jon the bowl of stuffing.

“Alright, alright!”  Jon grinned and took a modest serving.  Matt enjoyed the look on Jon’s face as he savored every bite.

Well, it's good to be back after a temporary hiatus (no, I wasn't in jail, lol, just taking a break). I still have a few ideas before I wrap up Matt and Jon. Let me know what you think (seperatepiece@hotmail.com).

If you're looking for some good stories to read, I recommend you look into several that are worthy of your attention.  Waiting for the Music (http://www.nifty.org/nifty/gay/highschool/waiting-for-the-music/) is a very well written story that takes place in and around Sydney, Australia.  The first three short chapters lay the foundation for what promises to be an intriguing tale.

I’ve recommended I Want a Friend (http://www.nifty.org/nifty/gay/highschool/i-want-a-friend/) to you before, but since then several more chapters have been added in the same charming and loving style.  I hope you have a chance to take a look at these stories and support and encourage the writers with your emails.

All the best for the new year.  Jon