As usual, I retain all rights, but am more than glad for anyone wishing to offer this story to others at no charge to do so with my gratitude and permission. Josh.


CHAPTER 10 -- Healing


I finished drying my face and looked in the mirror. My eyes were still red, but then, I’d done a lot of crying. I didn’t like to cry, even if Italians are supposed to be emotional. But I had to admit that I felt better now — a lot better. I was glad I’d told Davey.

Life, I suppose, is a roller coaster for most fifteen year-olds. But my roller coaster seemed to be awfully big lately. As I looked at the tall, sad youth in the mirror, a wave of self-pity passed over me.

Then I reminded myself that for the next part of my roller coaster ride, Davey would be beside me. I had my best friend back.

I combed my fingers back through my hair and forced a smile for the mirror, just to see what I’d look like for my best friend. When I left the bathroom, I was surprised to see Davey leaving my bedroom at the same time.

He smiled and put an arm over my shoulder. “Better?” he asked.

“Yeah. All better,” I smiled.

After supper with Mom, we took extra food for Maggie over to Davey’s house, and waited for her to come home from work. I checked to make sure that all the windows and doors were securely locked. Davey was certain Geoff wouldn’t be over, but I’d never trust Geoff.

The CBS Friday Night Movie was an Agatha Christie murder mystery. They were introducing the movie, and when they previewed the victim clutching his throat and keeling over, Davey switched off to another channel.

“No, wait,” I protested. “Put it back on the murder mystery. Maybe I can get some pointers on how to take care of Geoff.”

Davey switched the channel back, grinning at me.

“What? You think I’m kidding?” I asked.

We stacked pillows on the floor and lay down to watch TV side by side. Davey took my hand in his and slid close so that our shoulders were touching.

When Maggie came home, she ate her supper and watched TV with us before going to bed. I wasn’t anxious to go back to Davey’s room — I shivered at the thought of Geoff showing up. And so we fell asleep on the floor in front of the TV.

Sometime, after midnight, I woke up. Davey had an arm and a leg thrown over me, and his head was on my shoulder. I nuzzled his hair and gently stroked his back. Lying together like this, I could almost pretend that the last year hadn’t happened. And then I dozed off again.

Later, Davey shook me awake. I opened my eyes to find him staring down at me. “I wanna go to bed,” he said.

“Yeah, I’m ready, too.”

We did a side-by-side whiz in the john and then went to his room, where we locked the door.

“Turn the lights off, Davey,” I said. “Just in case he’s out there.”

Davey smiled tolerantly, and turned them off. I cautiously approached his windows, but then thought I saw something move outside, so I froze.

Davey came past me and looked out each of his windows in turn. Then he repositioned his room screen as much as he could in front of them.

But Geoff was in the room with us — in my mind. Because this was the bed where he had taken Davey from me. The thought came up unbidden, and I fought to push it away. I tried to clear my mind and in the semi-darkness, I watched Davey undress.

He was virtually my height now, but where I was all bone and muscle, Davey had a pleasing softness to his lines. He was slender and well muscled, but where I had almost a deficiency of body fat, he had just enough that his muscles lay hidden just beneath the skin until they were used, or until he twisted in just the right direction.

His body tapered gracefully from his angular shoulders to his narrow waist, and then flared over his rounded butt and the strong muscles of his long legs. His long, blond, almost white hair, though fine, hung in a thick mane to his shoulders. I thought he was as beautiful a male as any guy our age could be.

And then the things Geoff said he did to Davey passed through my memory like a shadow. I fought to push away those thoughts as I pulled my shirt over my head. Davey watched me as I undressed. When we were both down to our underwear, he stood to face me, and his eyes met mine. I took a deep breath and felt my fingertips tremble.

Davey rested his forehead on mine and gently ran his fingers over my shoulders and down my arms. Then he placed his hands under my arms and slid them slowly down my sides. When he reached my underwear, he slipped his thumbs under the waistband, and then stopped. I trembled slightly, and his warm breath washed over my bare chest. I said nothing and kept my eyes averted. Davey pulled my underwear down, past my flaccid cock, down my thighs, over my calves, to my ankles. Kneeling at my feet, he waited for me to lift each foot.

Then he stood again in front of me, and waited. Taking a deep breath, I rested my forehead on his and slid my hands over his shoulders and arms. Then I felt down his sides, slid my thumbs into the waistband of his underwear and pulled them down, past his flaccid cock and over his legs. I knelt at his feet as he lifted each one and I pulled his underwear off and tossed it in a pile with the rest of our clothes.

When I stood back up Davey held me by my shoulders and kissed me. I was stiff and nervous. It wasn’t much of a kiss.

He smiled, gently, and backed me to the bed. When he pulled back the bed covers, I crawled in. Climbing in after me, he pulled the covers up over us.

We faced each other on our sides and dropped an arm over each other’s waist. I looked at him across the pillow and smiled. Davey smiled back, and then we slept.

* * * * *

I was back on the dusty floor of the auditorium basement, beaten and naked. I was exhausted and unable to move, my face in the dust. And like every other time, I felt dirty and used.

Yet this time was different. My dad came to me. He put his arms around me and pulled me up into his lap. I rested my head against his chest.

“I’m glad you came back.” I told him. “I really need you.”

He held me tightly and rocked me in his arms. Then I noticed his chest was bare. He was strong and well built.

I looked up at him, and was surprised to see that he looked like Davey— an older Davey, whose deep blue eyes were incredibly tender.

“Davey?” I asked. “Is that you?”

“It’s OK,” he whispered. “It’s me. I’m here.” He squeezed me in his arms and smiled at me. “You aren’t alone anymore,” he said.

And suddenly we were sitting at the top of a turf-covered hill, under a light blue sky. He pulled me tight so that his face was very close to mine and smoothed the hair back off my forehead. Then his brow knitted in concern. “I’ll take care of you, Mickey,” he promised. “I’ll always take care of you.”

I buried my face in his neck. “I knew you would. I always knew you would, Davey.”

He whispered in my ear. “Don’t leave me, Mickey. Don’t ever leave me.”

“I won’t Davey,” I promised.

He kissed the top of my head and I closed my eyes.

Suddenly, I was aware of the brush of hair on my face and real lips pressing mine. At first, I was aware only of the blue of his eyes, and then early morning daylight. It took me a moment to remember where I was.

Davey looked down at me and there was no mistaking his look; he had that aching, deep male hunger that I knew too well. He wanted me. And it stirred me, instantly. When he lowered his lips to mine again, we kissed longer and he pressed his hard cock into the side of my hip.

Damn he felt so good there. Despite all the things that had happened, Davey and I belonged like this; naked, together.

He reached down and cupped my balls. With the heel of his hand, he pressed the underside of my cock. I groaned and spread my legs as he rubbed me. When my cock lengthened and hardened, he took the shaft in his hand and stroked me as he teased the tip of his tongue between my lips. I opened my mouth to him and ran my fingers into the hair on each side of his head.

Davey rolled onto me, and I spread my legs wider. As the weight of his body settled onto me, and his balls pressed mine down against my perineum, I clutched his butt and arched my pelvis up to meet him. We sighed as we pressed our groins hard together, and the sighs became moans.

Even after all these months, my body recognized its lost mate. Reflexes kicked in; I held his butt tightly and ground up, meeting his thrusts. Whimpering with hunger for him, I planted my feet on the bed and dug in my heels. My gut clenched again, hard, driving my cock up against Davey’s belly, lifting his hips with my thrust as his slim hips pressed snuggly between my legs. I held my pelvis up like that and Davey moved his cock over the tightness between my legs.

Every breath brought an involuntary whine or moan, from both Davey and me. After wanting him so long, I’d never felt anything like this — hungry, satisfied, in an ecstasy of sensations, all at the same time. And as good as his body felt on mine in every place we touched, it was between my legs that I was most on fire and I grabbed his butt harder, pulling him, feeling his butt cheeks tightening and relaxing with each grind.

Davey wrapped his arms over my head and probed deeper into my mouth with his tongue. Everything below his waist swiveled, grinding circles against my cock.

After so many months — so many sad months — having Davey like this, rubbing together again, was overwhelming physically and emotionally. I’d never felt exaltation before, not the real thing, but I felt it now; wild, roiling sexual exaltation. It was so intense I wept, and I almost wondered if I could take anymore… but I wanted desperately to find out.

I thought the dampness on my cheeks was from my own tears, but when Davey lifted his lips from mine, there were tears in his eyes as well.

“You’re crying,” I murmured, arching under him, feeling his butt muscles work under my hands.

“So are… you,” he answered huskily, and one of his tears dropped on to my cheek.

“Yeah,” I said, panting. “It’s so...” I lifted my pelvis another inch. “I think I want to cry… some more.”

“Yeah,” Davey said, and then his mouth dropped open and his eyes closed. I watched the muscles in his neck strain, and all the veins in it stand out. And then my own eyes closed as Davey moved in longer, harder thrusts.

He lowered his mouth to my neck to muffle his moans there and ran his arms under my back, grabbing my shoulders for leverage. His hips rubbed against the insides of my thighs with his pumping. We matched our thrusts so that each one ended with a firm press that rolled down the length of our cocks to press our balls together.

Davey’s mouth found mine again and his tongue pushed into my mouth, twisting, wrestling with mine. And as I felt my orgasm rise, I sucked his tongue, wanting it in my mouth, wanting us joined that way. And it muffled my cries. Davey pumped faster trying to orgasm with me. I pulled his butt cheeks apart because he used to like that.

My climax hit hard, my gut tightening hard and my knees lifting out to the side on their own. I cried mindlessly into Davey’s mouth. His muffled cries echoed mine, and we came together, grinding long past the flood of semen between our bodies. We ground until the grinding slowed and grew languid. Our kisses softened. And then I felt Davey’s fingertips on the sides of my face, tracing my features. I drew my fingers slowly up his back and straightened my legs out along his. His lips were soft and warm, and I kissed them, first his upper lip, then his bottom.

And then it was quiet. I hoped Maggie hadn’t heard. I listened, but the house was still.

Our bellies pressed as we breathed, and I felt warmed and comfortable under his weight between my legs and on my belly and chest. We kissed once more and he smiled down at me. Our eyes said things to each other that neither Davey nor I could ever fit into words.

Davey kissed the corners of my eyes, dabbing up the last of my tears with his lips. Then he kissed my cheek, and nuzzled into my neck. “Nobody… does it like… you… Mickey.” He kissed my neck. “I’m really sorry. For what… happened.”

I rubbed the back of his neck. “Davey. We’re back together. No more being sorry, OK?” I leaned back and lifted his head so I could look into his eyes. “We are, aren’t we? Back together again? You belong to me, and I belong to you— right?”

He nodded and put his forehead to mine. “I love you… Mickey.”

“I love you, Davey. Hey,” I whispered with a grin. “That’s gotta be why we have great sex… cause we love each other.”

Davey nodded.

“Besides,” I said, as I ground up my crotch against his. “We have matching rubbing spots.”

Davey giggled and another tear rolled down from his eye.

“Davey. Are you OK?”

“Yeah,” he said, burying his face in my neck once again. He pulled me into a tighter embrace.

I stroked his back and just held him. We fell asleep until the light through the windows was that of full day.

I awoke when Davey sat up on the edge of the bed. He looked back at me and I smiled at him. “Morning, Davey,” I said, and then arched my back in a delicious stretch.

Davey watched and while my back was arched, ran his hand over my still damp chest, belly, and hips. He gave me an appreciative smile. “Morning… Mickey. Stay… right there.”

He leaned from the bed and retrieved something from his pants. “I got this… yesterday… from your dresser,” he said breathlessly and held up the necklace he’d given me so long ago.

I lifted my head as he laid back down on me to fasten the necklace around my neck. We kissed again. We had a lot of kissing to catch up on.

* * * * *

A front had blown through San Antonio during the night. The sky was clear but there was a cool breeze blowing from the North. That afternoon, I was lying on the floor at Davey’s house, trying to watch a basketball game on TV, when Davey grabbed my arm and tugged at me to get me up.

“C’mon,” he said. “Let’s go… running.”

I scowled. “I don’t feel like running. Let me watch the game, Davey” I answered, trying to see the TV.

Maggie looked up from the chair where she’d been reading. “Why don’t you go for a run, Michael?” she suggested. “You boys haven’t run in a long time. It’ll be good for you.”

Davey grinned at me. “It’ll be… good for you,” he echoed.

I rolled my eyes. Davey’s grin was enough of an unfair advantage, I thought, without Maggie wading in to tip the scales.

We wound our way through the oak-treed neighborhoods around Trinity, and continued into Olmos Park and the Basin. We caught our second wind and the cool breeze invigorated us. We ran well together, and were a good match, running stride for stride.

Davey and I didn’t talk much, other than to point out the sights; kids on skateboards, a cute guy mowing his yard, and an older guy who was also running. We flew silently past him.

Then we climbed up from the road below Olmos dam and up into the fancy neighborhood streets of Alamo Heights. Our shirts were soaked with sweat, so we pulled them off and tied them around our waists. My running was relaxed and mostly from my hips. But Davey ran like an animal; naturally, fluidly, using his whole body. With his shirt off, he was magnificent.

Of course, he could have run any way he wanted and I would have thought he was magnificent. I loved watching the movement of his torso, the muscles in his legs, and his almost white hair trailing behind his head in the breeze.

I was pleased that Davey watched me too. I stretched taller, arching my back and sucking in my gut. I felt damn good, running, and I wanted Davey to like what he saw. Then I had this perverse desire to have him admire my butt. I lengthened my stride and moved ahead of him.

People in their yards watched us fly past. Dogs came out to run with us. We were young gods on the wind, and ran as effortlessly as the wind blew.

Davey picked up his pace and pushed ahead of me. I quickened my pace in turn and pulled back ahead of him. We passed the Catholic seminary, and ran on past the military academy, running faster and faster. Finally, we came out of the trees at the edge of the high bluff that overlooked Alamo Cement Quarry, and came to an abrupt stop. There we stood, hands on knees, facing the breeze while we caught our breath.

I wiped the sweat from my face. “That was great,” I said between pants.

Davey nodded, then looked out onto the quarry down below. “It’s like we…ran up… into the sky,” he said.

He took a deep breath, let out a yell, and hopped exuberantly around me. I laughed and did a crazy jig with him until we needed to catch our breath again. Since it was Saturday afternoon, the quarry below was quiet and the tall smokestacks of the cement plant were idle. We were alone there, at the top of the world.

“Thanks for making me run,” I said, shaking out first one leg and then the other. “I feel really good.”

Davey nodded. “Me too… I feel… great.”

His smile was like a damned magnet. “I’d kiss you,” I said, “but I guess it wouldn’t be a good idea up here.” I waved my hand over the quarry and beyond. “Somebody down there’s bound to see.”

His eyes twinkled because he wanted me to do exactly that. We stepped together at the same time, and atop the bluff, embraced in an adrenalin-fueled kiss.

Davey loosened my shirt from where I’d tied it around my waist and let it drop to the ground. Then he shoved his hands into the back of my pants, grabbed my butt, and jerked my crotch hard to his. I wrapped my arms around his shoulders pushed my tongue into his mouth.

Our bare, sweat-covered bellies and chests pressed together, warm out of the breeze, and the wind blew a storm of black and white hair around our heads. Davey squeezed my butt cheeks and our cocks grew hard against each other.

I leaned back in his arms and grinned. “Damn it, Davey. Kissing in front of the whole world is one thing, but humping each other up here in front of the whole world is something else entirely.” My hair blew across my face, so I leaned my head back and shook my hair out on the wind. When I looked back at Davey, his smile had faded and he looked at me sadly.

He pulled our crotches even more snuggly together. “I was afraid,” he said, “that… you wouldn’t… want me back… anymore.”

I grew serious as well. “I was afraid you wouldn’t come back,” I told him, and stepped from his arms to lead him to a nearby limestone rock. “And if you did come back,” I continued as I sat down, “I wasn’t sure things would be the same.”

Davey joined me on the rock. “Yeah, me… too.” He laid his forearm on my back and combed his fingers through the back of my hair. Then he moved closer and put his head against the side of mine. “How come you never… asked me to… come back?” he asked.

I relaxed back into him. “You were going with Geoff, Davey,” I pointed out. “Remember? You made your choice.”

Davey sighed. “But… you made me,” he said.

“I made you?” I asked, irritated.

“Yeah… you did,” he said, sitting back up, and there was an edge to his voice.

“Are we about to get mad at each other?” I asked.

Davey laughed, threw his arm across my chest and laid the two of us back onto the rock. “I don’t wanna… get mad.” He said.

We put our hands behind our heads and looked up at the sky. “Davey,” I asked. “Did Geoff ever hurt you?”

Davey hesitated. “He’s very… strong,” he said quietly.

I thought I’d be mad as hell at Geoff if Davey ever told me that Geoff had hurt him. Instead, it just made me hurt more, and made me feel incredibly sad.

“Davey?” I began, but my voice came out high, so I cleared my throat and started again. “Davey, did he treat you badly?”

I kept my eyes on the sky and wondered why I even asked these questions. Was I jealous? Did I just want another reason to hate Geoff? Or did I just need to know so that I wouldn’t always wonder.

“He treated me... OK,” Davey said. “Except when he didn’t want us… to be seen… together.”

“That was so wrong, Davey,” I murmured, anger welling up inside me. High overhead, a circling of buzzards drifted towards us from the north. I wrested my mind back from Geoff and hate, and watched the high black spots ride their circles on the wind. I wondered idly, if we lay very still, would the buzzards come down to us? But then Davey continued.

“He was nice… to me… Mickey,” Davey said quietly. “I liked our… dates. I liked… camping.” Davey rolled up on his side and reached past me to pick a long stalk of tasseled grass. He twirled it in his fingers and then began lightly drawing it over my bare arms. “I want… to take you… camping sometime… Mickey.”

I glanced at him. His eyes were on the grass tassel he was drawing down my arm, so I looked back at the buzzards. “Davey,” I said, trying to keep the emotion out of my voice. “I don’t know how I’d feel, doing something with you that you did with Geoff.”

“That’s silly,” he said simply. “We did a lotta things… together.” Then Davey caught his breath as he realized some of the implications. “Like movies… and eating out,” he quickly added.

Just when I was thinking that Davey had no idea how Geoff could haunt all of those things for me, he leaned closer to me.

“You promised… to take me to the… beach… this summer,” Davey reminded me. “And you did that… with Brandon… and I still want to… go. We’ll have… fun. OK?”

Brandon was an entirely different case, I thought… but maybe not to Davey. “I’m sorry about the Brandon thing, Davey.”

He just nodded.

“Davey, I know Geoff sorta wowed you to begin with, but why did you stay with him?”

“I wanted… you,” Davey said and tickled my nose with the grass.

I brushed it away. “Then why didn’t you say so?” I snapped.

He put the grass stalk down and looked at me a long time. “You were getting… bossy.”

I glanced at him. “Bossy?”

He shrugged. “You always want to… take care… of me! You… you got bossy. Especially about… Geoff. I was… afraid… if I asked… to come back…” he searched for words.

”Were you afraid I’d hold Geoff against you?” I reluctantly suggested as the possibility occurred to me. “Were you afraid I’d say ‘I told you so’ and try to take care of you even more?”

His silence was answer enough.

“I’m sorry, Davey.”

He put a hand on my chest and rubbed. “I wanted you,” Davey said. “I wanted you to ask me… to come… back. But… you left me — with him… with Geoff.”

I tried to clear my mind and weighed the whole thing from Davey’s perspective. If he came back — hat in hand so to speak — would I have lorded it over him? Would I have been ‘told-you-so’ bossy? Did he really think I would?

Damn. What did that say about me?

Sometimes in our lives, we glimpse our reflections in unexpected places and are surprised at what we see. All my life I had tried to be the one person who didn’t look down on Davey — the one person other than Maggie who treated him just like any other normal human being. In my mind and in my heart, Davey was better than any of us. He was always so beautiful and happy and kind — even to people who weren’t.

Suddenly seeing myself, and my treatment of Davey, reflected from his perspective was like a slap in the face.

How had it happened? Oh, I knew I had a tendency to feel superior, especially in arguments and virtually anytime someone disagreed with me. Grandpa Bentolli had made that pretty clear. But I’d never felt superior to Davey — I really hadn’t. At least, not until he fell for Geoff.

In my arrogance, was it possible that I had somehow driven Davey away? That was a scary thought. Could I drive him away again? My gut tightened. My hands began to tremble where they rested on the rock, and I quickly tucked them under my arms.

“Davey,” I said, turning my head to look him in the eye. “I’m sorry. I’m sorry I left you with Geoff.” I smiled, sadly. “I honestly thought you picked him over me… And, Davey, I’m sorry that I get bossy sometimes. I may need your help with that. I think it may be a blind spot with me.”

Davey frowned and I wondered if he understood ‘blind spot.’

“I might need you to tell me when I’m doing that,” I explained. “And not just with you. I do that with other people too — you know, get bossy or stuck up. You’ll tell me when I’m like that, won’t you?”

He nodded but was looking at where I had tucked my hands under my arms. He pulled one out and watched it tremble slightly. He frowned.

I shrugged. “I guess I’m a little nervous. I don’t want to chase you away again.” I tried to smile.

He took my hand in his and squeezed it tightly, and then he leaned over me. “I won’t… let you… chase me away again… ever.” He lifted my hand to his mouth and kissed the back of it. “It’s… my turn… to take care of you.”

I smiled. “If I had the pick of anyone in the world to ‘take care’ of me, Davey, it’d be you. But are you sure you want to? I’m sorta messed up; sorta sad, lately. And you’re always so happy.”

Davey smiled. “You’re always… serious… Mickey.” He looked thoughtful. “And it always… makes me… very happy to be… with you.”

“You don’t mind sticking around with me for a while?” I asked.

“I’m stickin’… around.” His smile faded and he pulled my hand tightly to his chest. His eyes bore down into mine. “I love you, Mickey. Don’t be… sad. OK?”

“Not sad?” I asked.


“OK,” I said, smiling slowly, and then I rolled onto him, digging my fingers into his ribs.

Davey tried to tickle back. We rolled around until we fell off the rock together and on to a patch of sticker burrs, which pierced through our shorts and socks, and our bare skin, like bee stings. Our cries and whoops echoed over the quarry.

* * * * *

It was cool out on the porch that night, but after family dinner Davey came and sat with me on the swing, bringing my guitar and his recorder with him. I sat cross-legged to face him, while Davey dangled a leg over the side and pushed us off whenever the swing slowed.

“Thanks for taking care of me, Davey,” I said, grinning. “I knew I could count on you to pick all those damned sticker burrs out of my ass.”

He frowned. “I think,” he said, “you… missed a couple on… my ass.”

“I’ll be glad to pick them out later, Davey. It sure was fun the first time around.”

He grinned. “Any stickers… in your lips?” he asked.

I picked up the guitar to tune. “I did that after the stickers were out. I told you, Davey — I had to kiss it and make it all better.”

He waited until I was ready, and then we made a couple of false starts before we eased into some light-hearted musical tag. Then musical tag became a dance, a duet as Davey anticipated me with his recorder and danced among my notes with his own. I hummed to add a third voice and we wove a new song together.

Mom and Maggie came out onto the porch. They’d brought a blanket and sat under it on the couch to listen as we played.

Finally we rested, and I placed my guitar down on the floor beside the swing. Davey lowered the recorder to his lap.

“That was good,” Mom said, applauding. “You two have learned how to play well together.”

Maggie nodded. “I liked what you were playing. It’s happier than the other things you’ve been playing lately.”

I shrugged. “I feel happier,” I said.

“You and Davey have a good day together?” Mom asked.

I looked at Davey. “Yeah, up until the time Davey made me go running with him.”

“C’mon!” Davey protested. “You liked… it.”

“Good for you, Davey,” Mom said. “You’re a good influence on Michael. Keep working on him.”

Davey smiled devilishly. “OK,” he said, and then held out his hands, fingers spread claw-like toward my ribs. I tried to back off the swing and he came after me. In a split second, I was on my back, Davey astride my hips, fingers dug into my sides.

Davey knew just how to tickle me and he was merciless. It felt so good to laugh that I didn’t gasp “Please” until I had almost no breath left to gasp with. He paused reluctantly, his fingers still lightly on my ribs. It was hard to stop laughing while he left them poised like that.

I was surprised that Mom hadn’t fussed at us for clowning around on the porch, but when I looked over at her, she was smiling broadly.

“Mom” I panted, “you were supposed to tell Davey to stop rough-housing!”

She chuckled. “Oh, no,” she said. “It’s good to hear you laughing, Michael. I’ve been worried about you. It’s good to see you acting like a boy again, and not like some kind of sad old man.”

“Old man?” Davey asked, wriggling his eyebrows. “Old man?” And then he dug his fingers into my ribs again.

I would have rolled out from under him, but his butt on my crotch had made me hard and besides, laughing felt damn good. But I did grab at his wrists. “You’re two weeks older than me,” I gasped out. “Old man!”

“Alright, alright,” Mom said. “You two can calm down now.”

Davey stopped tickling and winked at me. “Old man.”

That night, Davey was back at his house and I slept alone. And I dreamed again; I was back in the auditorium basement, naked and hurting; nobody came to help me.

* * * * *

Mom was at the grocery store the next morning when Davey let himself in through the front door. I was lying on the couch in my sleeping shorts reading the Sunday paper and lowered it to the floor.

“Hello, Old Man,” he said and knelt onto the couch astride my middle. He held something hidden behind his back.

“Hello, Old Man,” I said, smiling up at him.

Davey gave me an approving once over with his eyes. He leaned close. “Is Gloria up yet?”

“Yeah. She’s gone to the store.”

He bent over me, put a hand on my chest, kissed me. When he sat up he held up a square manila envelope in front of me. “You’re coming with… me… today,” he said, handing me the envelope.

He watched me tear it open. “Tuesday,” Davey said, “is… Valentines… but I want to… celebrate… today. I’m takin’ you… on a date.”

From the envelope, I pulled a sheet of heavy bond paper that had been folded in half into a homemade Valentine card. On the front was a hand-drawn heart with “Davey & Mickey” written on it. Inside was one word, “Forever,” and at the bottom, the signature, “Davey.”

I laid the Valentine down on the floor beside the couch and reached up to grab his shirt with both hands. Pulling him down to me, I kissed him and rolled him into the back of the couch, pressing his body down with mine. “Damn, I love you!” I said, and kissed him hard again.

Davey moaned into my mouth, kissing back. And then he wrapped his lower arm under my neck, taking it into the crook of his arm. He held me close while his other hand roamed the bare skin of my torso and eventually reached down into the front of my sleeping shorts. It was my turn to moan as Davey fondled me until I was rock hard. Then he pushed me onto my back and pulled off my shorts. He knelt there, just looking at my body.

His gaze moved slowly, up my body. When his eyes finally met mine, he looked at me wonderingly. “You’re… mine,” he said softly.

“Every inch of me,” I said, stretching myself as seductively as I could. When Davey pulled off his shirt, I got up from the couch, grabbed my shorts and the Valentine with one hand and took Davey’s hand with my other. “Not here,” I said. “Mom will be home soon.”

I led us to my room. Davey closed and locked the door while I put away the Valentine. When I turned back around, he backed me to the bed, sat me on the edge, and then pushed me back so that my feet were still on the floor. He knelt there, between my legs, and buried his face in my crotch.

He nuzzled and tasted. Then he lifted my balls with one hand and licked underneath them, just the way I liked. Then he licked over them and up my scrotum. When he licked up my shaft, I remembered that Geoff said he had taught Davey to deep throat. I tried not to think about that because I really wanted Davey to suck me again, and I wanted to suck him.

“Davey. Take off your pants so I can do you, too.”

Davey’s eyes appeared from between my legs, then his smile. He stood up and pulled off his shoes, pants, and boxers. He was so hard, his cock sprang up and slapped his belly. He saw where I was looking and waggled his hips to wave it at me.

He returned to the bed and crawled into a sixty-nine position over me. His familiar, flushed-red cock hung above my face — the cock I had known since we were boys. I reached up and touched it lightly, and I noticed it was bigger than I remembered. “Been a lot of places without me lately, huh little friend?” I thought, and then I pushed that thought aside. Davey was mine now and I would not think about anyone else he had been with. I grabbed his hips, pulled him down onto my face, and took a deep breath.

. . . . .

The smell of bacon and eggs drifted under my door from the kitchen. My stomach rumbled.

I gave Davey’s now flaccid cock a final lick. “You didn’t do a good enough job of fillin’ me up, Old Man. My stomach’s rumblin’ for breakfast.”

Davey flopped my cock back and forth with his fingers. “Me too,” he said before he buried his mouth in my balls and growled.

I yowled and pushed him off. “Not those eggs!” I said laughing. “The ones in the kitchen.”

. . . . .

“Hi, Davey. I didn’t know you were here,” Mom said as we came into the kitchen.

“Morning, Gloria,” Davey said, looking over her shoulder at the eggs she was frying.

She smiled at him. “Sit down. I’ll fix you some too.”

“Morning, Mom.” I said, also taking a seat at the table. I didn’t kiss the top of her head like I usually do because I hadn’t washed my face and I didn’t want her smelling Davey’s crotch on me. I gave her an innocent smile.

“Mom,” I asked, as I picked up a strip of bacon. “Is it OK if Davey and I catch a bus downtown today? We thought we’d hit the riverwalk.”

She smiled. “Sure. In fact, if you’ll hurry to get ready, I’ll give you a ride. I thought about heading that way. I wanted to get a folder I left at the office.”

Mom joined us at the table and watched Davey dig in to the food. “Whatever happened to Geoff, Davey?” she asked. “Maggie and I were wondering. You don’t seem to be doing much with him anymore.”

Davey quickly looked at me.

“He’s busy with his upper-class, jock friends,” I said quickly.

Mom nodded. “That’s probably just as well. You guys ought to hang out with kids your own age.”

* * * * *

On the San Antonio River, opposite the Palacio del Rio Hotel, and under a bank of tall river cypress trees, was a stand for short river tours. Davey dragged me over to the ticket booth to catch one of the small tour barges.

“C’mon, Davey,” I protested. “They cost too much! Let’s save our money. We can walk.”

He wagged his finger at me. “It’s my… date,” he insisted. “I’m paying.”

Once he had our tickets, the boat-handlers herded us onto the boat along with a bunch of families, pressing Davey and me in between two dads. He put his arm atop the railing behind me and leaned close. “Don’t get hard,” he whispered.

“Geez, Davey,” I whispered back. “Don’t ever tell a guy that. It’s like saying don’t smile. As soon as you say it, it’s almost impossible not to.” When I leaned back from whispering in his ear, he pointedly stared down into my lap and had a huge, ear-to-ear grin.

“Shit!” I said, and put my hands over my crotch.

Davey continued to stare at my lap.

“Cut that out,” I whispered loudly in his ear, and tried to fill my lap with my arms because I was getting hard.

Davey laughed, and kept watching my lap. Then he looked away and put his own arms in his lap.

“Ha!” I said loudly to him. “Ha!”

He giggled and we both burst out laughing.

Davey insisted on treating me to lunch at the Casa del Rio restaurant so we could sit by the water’s edge. The only table by the river was in the sun, but with the temperature in the high sixties, it was a nice place to sit. We sat on adjoining sides of a small square table, with our backs to the river.

Our waiter was a young, dark-skinned guy, with broad shoulders, narrow hips, blazing white teeth, and a remarkably attractive face. He left us water, salsa, chips, and menus, chatting all the while. When he left, Davey grinned at me. “He likes you,” he said.

“I’m taken,” I told him, shaking my head. “That guy doesn’t stand a chance.”

There was a lot to see from where we sat — tourists, shops, servers, boats, swallows hopping under the tables for crumbs – and I watched Davey as he took in all the sights. Each time his head turned in the sun, the light played in his hair. I admired the shape of his head from every angle, the line of his nose, the softness of his lips.

He knew I was watching him, and winked at me, sliding his foot to mine under the table. I pressed my calf to his and felt his warm skin against mine. Meanwhile, I started on the chips and salsa, chasing them down with sweet tea. Davey focused on the chips; not much into spicy foods.

A group of guys close to our age walked past our table. They looked like jocks, and a couple of them were big, well-built guys. Davey’s eyes followed them.

“You really do like ‘em big, huh?” I asked, with a smile so he knew I wasn’t bothered.

He nodded uncertainly, his eyes glued to their muscular builds. “Yeah.”

“Funny, but I think I like ‘em small, with tight bodies,” I said, and then chuckled. “And look at us, both average size.” Then I winked. “And a perfect fit.”

Davey leaned forward over the table, grinning mischievously and took my hand. “You’re not… average size.”

“That’s not what I meant and you know it,” I protested.

A couple of people passing by looked at his hand holding mine. I started to pull my hand back, but Davey held it. There was a twinkle in his eye.

I laughed. “You like embarrassing me in public, don’t you?” I asked, and squeezed his hand back.

Davey smiled slyly. “I really wanted to put my hand… somewhere else.”

“Cut that out,” I warned. “Or I’ll grab you somewhere.”

Davey grinned hugely and started to slide our hands toward my edge of the table. I jerked them back. “Don’t you dare!” I said.

He reached under the table with his other hand, and I scooted my chair back and grabbed that hand, too. “Oh, no you don’t!” I said, jumping back from the table.

My chair fell backwards and right into the river.

Davey looked up at me, his jaw dropping. And then he started laughing.

“I’m not gonna get that!” I said, sliding around one of the other chairs. “It was your fault! I’ll hold your clothes while you go in for it.”

Our waiter, along with dozens of tourists, had seen the chair fall in. He quickly came over. “It’s alright,” he said confidentially. “It happens sometimes. That’s why they have cheap chairs.” Then he hurried away to help another table.

When he was gone, Davey still had a huge smile. He held my eyes and dropped his hand to my thigh.

“Geez, Davey,” I said, grabbing him by the wrist. “You’re trying to get me to fall into the river, aren’t you?”

He laughed. “No… not with your… clothes on.”

“One of these days, I’m going to figure out a way to embarrass you for a change, Mr. Davey-Smartass. You just wait.”

He laughed again, but then his eyes drifted to watch an approaching family with two teen sons. I waited until they were even with our table and then let out a wolf whistle, quickly looking away. I hoped that if the family turned to the whistle, they would see Davey staring at the boys. Then I innocently turned back, as if looking for the source of the whistle, to find Davey turning beet-red as the father of the boys looked sternly our way.

Davey glared me, at first angry, but then the corners of his mouth turned up.

“What?” I asked, innocently.

He eyed my leg like he would go for my thigh again, but at that moment a group of mariachi musicians came out from the restaurant, playing and singing loudly.

Afterward, we walked among the shops along the riverwalk.

We were drawn into an art gallery that overlooked the river just down from the restaurant. The gallery featured western paintings and bronzes. Some were fantastic.

Davey had damned good taste – or at least damned expensive. His favorite artist was very good with hill country creek scenes. I checked the price tags; the guy was expensive. Even his prints were expensive. I wished I was rich; I’d love to buy one for Davey.

And then I spotted it, a small, framed print by that same artist. It was a scene of the Sabinal River, canopied by river cypresses, with pools of filtered sunlight scattered among dark eddies. It was beautiful, even for a small print, and Davey hadn’t seen it.

I’d been saving all the money I could so that I could buy a car next summer, but this was important. I grabbed the print and snuck away from Davey while he sorted through a stack of prints in a back room. It took a bit of talking for me to convince the clerk to take my check, even after she called Mom at the office, but the woman eventually did. I had her wrap up the picture so Davey couldn’t see it.

He eyed it curiously when we left the shop. “My Valentine present to you,” I said mysteriously.

I didn’t let Davey open it until we were back at his house. He gasped when he saw it, and I was so happy he liked it that I found myself blinking back tears for the umpteenth time that weekend. It seemed so damned easy to cry these days. Shit, I hated crying.

It had grown dark by the time we had shown the picture to Mom and told her about our day at the river. I walked back to Davey’s house with him. We stopped on the porch before going in and I leaned against the wall, away from the door.

“So this is what you meant when you said you’d take care of me,” I teased. “Make me run up hills, roll me in sticker burr patches, tickle me mercilessly on my own porch, and take me to the river walk to embarrass me in front of hundreds of strangers.” I smiled. “Have I told you that I have the coolest best friend in the world?”

He grinned broadly. “I tried to… help.”

“Tried?” I asked. “The run? Last night on the porch? The date today? You didn’t just try — you did. You made me feel a lot better.”

Davey leaned forward. “Don’t forget what else we did… yesterday morning… and this morning.”

“Yeah, and my Valentine card. I really liked it,” I said and leaned my head against the wall. “What a great weekend, Davey,” I said softly. “You’re incredible.”

He put a hand to my cheek and rubbed it gently. “You too… Mickey,” he said quietly.

I took his hand from my cheek and kissed his palm. Before I knew it, he had me in his arms.

* * * * *

“It’s a game, Michael. You gotta play the game,” Chase told me as we waited for Mr. Weishamer’s class to begin. “And they make the rules. All you have to do is play by their rules enough to keep ‘em happy, while you screw them enough to keep you happy. That’s how it works with chicks.”

I rolled my eyes. “So you only spend all your waking time with her so she’ll continue to put out for you?”

“Geez, Bent,” he said, frowning. “That’s putting it pretty crude.”

“Exactly my point, Chase. It’s not as simple as you make it out to be. I know you’re a horn dog,” I said, while thinking that Janie was too – or whatever the female equivalent was. “But you really like Janie, and don’t deny it. I know you.”

He smiled. “Well it’s still a game, and they still make the rules. Besides, you like Amy. I know you, too, Bent.”

“No, Chase,” I said. “You don’t know me — not about this. Yeah, I like Amy and we’re still friends. But just friends.”

“Well,” Chase said, shaking his head, “I don’t understand you. Amy’s the nicest girl around – don’t tell Janie I said that, by the way — and Amy’s one of the hottest too. She’s already puttin’ out for you. Why go lookin’ for anybody else?”

I didn’t tell him that I already had somebody else. I just shook my head. “It isn’t going to work, Chase. So just give it a break.”

“Alright. We’ll find you somebody else, but I gotta tell you, you screw up with another girlfriend and you’re on your own. And I gotta tell you this too,” he said, furrowing his brow, “If Janie and I ever break up, I’m goin’ for Amy. Shit…” He stopped and stroked his chin thoughtfully. “Y’know, I might do that anyway. I wonder if she needs some comforting now that she’s on the rebound from you.”

I frowned. “She’s still my friend, Chase,” I said. “You better treat her right.”

“I’ll treat her right,” Chase said, and then sighed. “Geez, Bent, you’re worse than a girl, thinking everything has to be so… romantic. It’s not like you’re supposed to be lookin’ for a wife, doofus. You get a girlfriend, you hang together, you screw each other’s eyes out, and when you’re ready, you move on. This is your prime, guy! You’re supposed to be layin’ every chick you can.”

“And let’s see, you’ve laid how many? I asked. “Ummm, would that be ONE?”

Mr. Weishamer walked in to the room and the class began to quiet.

“Fuck you!” Chase whispered.

I had been nervous in Mr. Weishamer’s class all week, especially since it was obvious he had his eye on me. When class was over, I tried to follow Chase out on the far side of the room from Mr. Weishamer.

“Michael, hold up,” he called to me. I followed him over to the back of the classroom. “Did you talk to somebody, or are you putting on a show for me.”

I was puzzled. “Putting on a show?”

“Yes, putting on a show. It’s like somebody flipped a switch and you’re happy again. The only reason I’m not sure it’s a show is that I’ve seen you around the campus, and you actually do look almost back to normal again.”

“It’s no show, sir.” I assured him. “I do feel better. Thanks for encouraging me to talk to somebody, and thanks for worrying about me.” I smiled gratefully, and headed for the door.

“Michael,” he said, “can I ask who you talked to?”

I shrugged. “My best friend.”

He nodded, and then looked surprised. “Isn’t Davey Carlson your best friend?”

“Yes sir,” I said happily and left the room.

Chase was waiting down the hall. “Hey, Bent,” he called.

“Yeah, mister hot stud?” I grinned.

“OK, asshole. See if I help you get together with Tracy.”

“Who’s Tracy?”

“Tracy DeLeon — very hot freshman. She was askin’ Janie about you. Long black hair, nice butt, tall, long legs… she’d be an easy notch for the ol’ belt. After all, you’re a sexy upper classman, right?”

“Cool it Chase,” I said. “I need to get to class.” I took off down the hall.

“Hey, wait up,” Chase called, coming after me. “I was waiting cause I keep forgettin’ to tell you what my dad said.”

I slowed down. “What’d Ed say?”

“He’s pissed off that you guys haven’t been over for a barbecue in so long. He said to get your butts over there this Sunday, or else you and Davey will be the ‘next items on the grill.’ Mom misses you too. I guess Hunter’s seen Davey around a time or two, but he said to tell you he misses you, too.”

“Is your dad really pissed?”

“Well he’s kinda disappointed. He likes you guys, you know.”

“Yeah,” I looked away. “Look, Chase, last month was a bad month for me, OK? Tell Ed I’m sorry. I’ll see if I can get Davey over there with me this Sunday.”

Chase cocked his head. “Bad month, huh? Yeah, you’ve been like all weirded out. What’s up with that?”

“Nothing I want to talk about, Chase,” I said and looked at my watch. “Look, I gotta get to class. Thanks for telling me what your dad said. We’ll be there.”

* * * * *

It didn’t take Larice long to figure things out. The following week, she pulled me out of the lunch line at school and led me out to a bench under one of the oak trees. When she faced me, it was with a resigned look. “You’re back together, aren’t you?” she asked.

“Yeah,” I answered, nodding. “We are.” I took her hand. “I’m sorry we didn’t tell you sooner.”

I expected her to pull her hand away, but she let me hold it. Her gaze was distant as she nodded to herself. “It was obvious enough,” she said.” Then she frowned. “You and Davey need to be more careful — especially Davey.”

I cocked my head. “More careful?”

Larice squeezed my hand. “You haven’t seen the way he looks at you when you aren’t watching. He adores you, Michael,” she said with a sigh. “I’d give anything for him to look at me that way, just once.”

She smiled. “You need to be careful too, Michael. That is, unless you want the whole school to figure things out — because sometimes you look at him the same way.”

That took me by surprise. Was it so obvious to everybody? I wondered. “Thanks,” I said. “I guess I need to watch myself.”

She patted my hand. “Michael,” she said quietly. “When you guys are done being boyfriends, do you think Davey will still want to be gay?”

“Done being boyfriends?”

She glanced at me nervously. “Come on. We’re in high school, Michael. How many people wind up with their high school sweethearts? Look,” she said and squeezed my hand. “You’re gonna go to college and Davey’s gonna go do his thing… get a job… or maybe even… get married. Who knows?”

I sat, staring at her. I wasn’t ready to think about being away from Davey. Hell, we’d just gotten back together.

“It could happen,” she continued. Then she looked away and shrugged. “I know. It’s silly.”

I watched her profile as she pondered the things girls ponder when they think about guys and their own future, which always seem to go together.

Then she glanced back at me and her eyes were damp. “He really is fantastic, isn’t he?”

“Yeah, he is,” I said, giving her shoulder a small squeeze. “I’m sorry, Larice.”

“Thanks,” Larice said, looking away again. “I guess I should be mad at you.”

“I guess you could be, but don’t,” I said. “Because we’re friends, you and me. And because I can understand — I know what it’s like to lose Davey.”

She nodded. “Yeah. I suppose you do.” Then she chuckled. “We’re one hell of a romantic mess, aren’t we? I love Davey, Amy loves you… How is Amy?”

“We’re still friends. She’s been nice to me… considering,” I said. “You’re better friends with her than I am now,” I pointed out. “You should know how she’s doing better than I do.”

Larice shrugged. “She seems alright. But she’s not dating anybody else yet.”

She gave me a bittersweet smile. “It’d all be so much easier if you two weren’t gay. You wouldn’t consider giving it up, like maybe a couple of days a week?”

“No,” I said. “I don’t think it works that way.”

She shook her head again. “Such a waste.”

* * * * *

It was cool that evening, but we both felt like running. It had happened; Davey had gotten us addicted to running. We ran our favorite course, up into Alamo Heights.

“Davey,” I said between breaths. “I guess you have to be careful about how you look at me now. Larice says you and I are being too obvious.”

He looked over at me as we ran. “What does she… mean… Mickey?”

“Well she says you and I look at each other with too much… umm… obvious affection.”

He shook his head. “That’s a good… thing.”

“OK, lookit,” I said. “Larice says we look like we ‘adore’ each other, like we’re in love. People can tell.”

He grinned.

“This is serious, Davey. If we get outed… well it’d be bad right now. You remember what happened with Brandon.”

“But I do… love you… Mickey.”

I ran close enough for our shoulders to jostle. “I know Davey. I love you, too! You know that. We just have to be more careful. You don’t look at guys as obviously as you used to. You trained yourself. You just need to train yourself about how we treat each other in public.”

“I still look... at guys,” he said. “I look at… guys… all the time. I’m just… careful.”

“Yeah, careful. That’s the idea. Wait — you look all the time?” I asked, drifting a bit away as we ran.

He dropped the smile. “But I look at… you… most.”

Not sure how I felt about him looking at other guys, ‘all the time,’ I looked ahead and didn’t say anything.

“You look… at guys, Old Man,” he said.

“I just look at parts of guys,” I corrected, eyes ahead.

“But you look,” he insisted. “ I’ve seen you.” He poked my side. “What parts? What parts… do you look… at? On… me?”

I chuckled. “Oh, I look at all of you, Davey. You’re the only one I look at all of.”

He thought about that. “I look… at parts of… you… all of them.” He reached over and put his hand on my butt as we ran. “I’ll tell you… my favorite… parts.”

“Trying to embarrass me again?” I asked with a grin.

“Uh-huh… Old Man,” he said.

I tackled him onto a lawn we were passing, and went for his ribs.

* * * * *

Knox leaned back against the wall of the practice room and frowned to let me know he didn’t like my styling, so I decided to do something he really didn’t like and dropped back a couple of measures. Then I replayed it more the way I figured he wanted. He still frowned up at me from under his eyebrows, but nodded.

When I finished, he patted my back. “I want you to work on that for next time. Before you go, come to my office. I have a cassette I want you to take with you.”

“Somebody playing the piece the way you want, probably.”

“Exactly,” Knox said, watching me put away my guitar. “Michael,” he said, thoughtfully, “I’ve been thinking about what you’ve said about you and Davey being back together.”

“Oh?” I asked, not looking up.

“Yeah, look… I think it’s great that you two are back together. And it’s wonderful that you’re so much in love. I know your feelings for Davey are strong. So strong that I worry a little for you.”

I closed my guitar case and waited for him to finish.

“Michael,” he said. “You guys are young. You’re both going to eventually move on sometime to other boyfriends, other loves. It happens, and I don’t want to see either of you get hurt. And well, I guess I’m concerned that it can happen sooner rather than later if you smother Davey too much… which is easy to do, the way you feel about him. It’s up to you, but you might think about giving Davey a little breathing room.”

“Well thanks for the advice, Knox,” I said, a little icily. “I appreciate your concern, but just for the record, Davey loves me just as much as I love him, and I don’t feel ‘smothered’ at all.” But then I smiled, wondering if Knox had pegged my blind spot. “According to Davey, though, I do have a tendency to be bossy. I’m trying to watch that.”

Knox chuckled. “Guess he can stick up for himself,” he said, and then leaned forward in his chair. “Just don’t get hurt, Michael, OK? Guys your age get horny. They go in and out of relationships. You and Davey already have once, you know.”

He leaned back against the wall and put his hands behind his head. “You know,” he said, “people have always said that it takes heartbreak to be a great musician. Maybe that’s why your playing has already gotten better.” He winked. “But you know what, Michael? I’d rather you be happy than be a great musician.”

Knox slapped my thigh and gave me a sly smile. “Speaking of which,” he continued. “I intend to introduce you to a new high school student I have. I’m pretty sure he’s gay, he’s only a year or two older than you, and he’s a doll. I think you’ll like him, and I know he’ll like you.” Then he squeezed my shoulder. “There will be lots of gays out there interested in you, Michael. And you’re going to be interested in other guys. Davey’s going to run into the same problem.”

I opened my mouth to interrupt, but Knox raised his hand to silence me.

“Just hang on to the friendship, Michael,” he said, finishing. “What you and Davey have in your friendship together is way too valuable to lose. Don’t let your current sexual infatuation tangle up your friendship again.”

“Infatuation, Knox?” I asked, irritated. “I’d like to know the difference between what you’re calling infatuation and what you’d call love. Is it infatuation just because we’re teenagers? Because it sure as hell feels like love to me.”

“It’s infatuation, Michael, when it’s only feelings. If you still loved Davey like this a year from now and if you’re both working to keep together even when it isn’t always easy… well then you’re talking about love.”

“Then, Knox,” I said, very sure of myself. “We already are talking about love. You don’t know what Davey and I have been through!”

He looked at me sadly, and then shrugged. “Maybe so.”

I’d had enough. “Look, Knox,” I said, taking up my case and books. “I’ve had some expenses lately and I’m trying to save for a car this summer. I think I need to hold off on lessons for a while.”

Knox’s brow furrowed deeply. “Are you sure, Michael? Can you just cut back from twice a month to once? I don’t want you to stop. You play well, and you have the potential to be really good.”

I shook my head. “I wish I could,” I said. “But I really need to save my money.”

Knox scratched his chin. “We’re having student recitals in May. I was going to talk to you about taking part. Look, let’s get together once a month till then. You play in the recital, and I won’t charge you a dime.”

“No,” I shook my head. “I can’t do that.”

His face fell, and I felt a pang of guilt.

I sighed. “Look, Knox,” I said, resignedly. “I can’t expect you to help me save for a car. But if you want me to play in the recital that much, I’ll pay for a monthly lesson.”

“Done,” he said smiling. “Come by this Saturday morning at ten and I’ll set you up for a month.”

“This Saturday at ten? Already?”

“Sure. We’re switching gears.”

“Wait a minute,” I said suspiciously. “Will that new student of yours be here Saturday morning?”

“Hudson? Well, yeah, he could be.” Knox gave me a mischievous grin. “You’ll like him; he’s got red hair.”

I rolled my eyes. “I’ll come, Knox. And I’m sure I’ll like… what’s his name? Hudson?”

“Yeah. Hudson.” He grinned. “He’s really cute.”

“Knox,” I continued, “nothing is going to happen. Davey and I have just gotten back together. OK?”

Knox chuckled. “OK, OK.”

“Thanks, prof!” I said, and seeing no one in the anteroom, I kissed his cheek and hugged him.

. . . . .

Knox was still giving Hudson his lesson when I arrived Saturday. It had to be Hudson. He may have been older than me, but he looked younger physically. He had a small, lithe body with fine, delicate, almost feminine features. His hair was a darker red than Brandon’s and he had a creamy complexion along with blue-gray eyes and long lashes. He saw me waiting in the anteroom and stole occasional glances at me while he finished his lesson.

I stood up when they came out of the practice room.

“Hi, Michael,” Knox said, greeting me. “I’m glad you’re early. I wanted you to meet Hudson. Hudson… Michael.”

We shook hands, and Hudson gave me a timid smile. He needed to work on his handshake; he gave the limp kind that Grandpa Bentolli despised. But that could be forgiven. I had to admit, he was remarkably good looking. In fact, if you gave him a wig, he might just pass for a very pretty girl.

“I’m thinking of having you boys work together on a piece for May recitals,” Knox said. “I have a two-guitar transcription of Pachelbel’s Canon that would be perfect.” He looked from me to Hudson, and then pulled some sheet music out from his portfolio, giving us each a copy.

I looked it over and cringed; the page looked almost black with notes. “I think I’m going to need another hand or two to play this, Knox,” I said, shaking my head.

He laughed. “C’mon, Michael,” he chided. “I wouldn’t give it to you if I wasn’t sure you could handle it.” Then he turned to Hudson. “Michael can only take one lesson per month so I’m being sneaky.” Knox winked at me and continued. “I’m giving you two a difficult piece that he’ll need to practice a lot on. At least I’m also giving him a partner who’ll be… fun to practice with.”

He beamed at me, but I kept my eyes averted from Hudson, slightly embarrassed that Knox seemed to be matchmaking.

“But for now,” Knox said over his shoulder as he walked away, “you two take a moment to work out when you can get together and then we’ll start our lesson, Michael. I’ll be in my office.”

Then it was just the two of us. Hudson smiled shyly.

I cleared my throat. “Do you drive?” I asked.

“Yeah. I have a car.”

“I don’t drive yet,” I said. “But whenever you can come over, we can practice at my place.”

Hudson smiled. “Cool.”

“I’ve, uh, got a friend,” I quickly said. “Davey.”

“Yeah,” Hudson said with a shrug. “Knox told me.”

“Oh, cool,” I said, relieved that Hudson knew about Davey. “Well anyway, Davey has an alto recorder and plays some with me. He’s already mastered half-holes and I’ve taught him to read a little music. He can probably do some of your part when I need to practice.”

Hudson looked so transparently disappointed, I felt sorry for him. “But,” I quickly added, “we can still get together as much as we need to for the recital. You’ll like Davey.” I figured Hudson for gay and so I leaned closer to him. “Davey’s my special friend.”

Hudson nodded his understanding. “That’s cool,” he said, and then glanced up at me uncertainly. “Look,” he said, clearing his throat. “If you have time today to get together, I can wait until after you’re done with your lesson and then take you home. Then at least I’ll know where you live. Maybe we could even get in some practice.”

“Excellent,” I answered. “Davey should be home and you can meet him too.”

When we got to my house, I let Hudson in and had him wait while I ran over to Davey’s. Davey heard me come in the front door and came from his room, in just his running shorts. “Get dressed, Davey,” I told him. “I’ve got someone you need to meet waiting back at my place. Hurry up. We’ll be waiting.”

And so, Hudson began coming over on Saturday mornings. Sometimes Davey hung out with us, and Hudson became a friend, but just a friend.

* * * * *

I was always a very fast reader — a bit of a natural speed-reader I suppose. Novels were a piece of cake. War and Peace took few days, but I could handle almost any novel in a weekend.

But now I turned my reading to psychological topics as I tried to grapple with my own problems — one of which was what I soon learned was called a ‘stalker.’

My stalker was Geoff. And I felt like his eyes were always on me.

I developed almost a sixth sense about him. I’d be talking in the cafeteria at school and ‘get the feeling,’ only to look around and find him staring at me. He’d always smile, and what really bothered me was that his smiles were becoming less lecherous and more like the smile one gives a personal friend.

I’d be talking in the hall to Chase, and I’d feel a chill, knowing without even looking that it was Geoff passing me, even without looking. And I wouldn’t look because I didn’t want him smiling at me like we were friends.

He sometimes tried to catch me alone and would try to talk to me, but I always ignored him until the day he trapped me at the lockers. Other students blocked me from behind, and he blocked the front.

“Davey says you two are together again,” he said quietly.

I refused to look at him. “Leave me alone, Geoff.”

“Davey still likes me,” he said so quietly that I almost couldn’t hear. “Look, I’m sorry I sorta forced things last time. OK? We can still be friends. Let’s all three of us get together. Ya’ll come to my house this afternoon. I’ve got a big screen TV. We can watch something.”

It was all I could do to keep from dropping my books and pummeling his face. I spoke low enough that only he could hear. “You fucking perverted asshole. You…” I leaned even closer to his ear, “you fuckin’ raped me Geoff.” His scent brought back memories and I stepped back a foot. “I don’t know what you tell yourself in that fucked-up mind of yours, but I don’t like you. I never liked you. And now I hate your guts.”

He smiled almost as if I was playing a cute ‘hard to get’ game. My hands were shaking when I leaned close enough once more so that only he could hear. “You keep this up Geoff, and someday, I will kill you.” And I meant it.

When I brushed past him, it was really satisfying to see the look of utter surprise on his face.

About an hour after my run in with Geoff, I saw Davey heading my way. Davey went out of his way these days to pass me in the halls.

“Hi, Old Man,” he said.

“Hi, Old Man,” I replied and caught his arm. “Look, Davey, have, uh… have you been talking with Geoff?”

He nodded. “I told him… to stay away.” He leaned closer. “I told him… stay away… cause you’re my… boyfriend.”

“Well,” I said, “I don’t think he understood, because he thinks you still like him. Geoff doesn’t understand the word ‘no’ very well. You may have to hit him up the side of the head for him to leave you alone.”

Davey cocked his head at me. “I told him,” he said, “To stay away… from you.” Then Davey shrugged. “And… he knows I… don’t like him.”

“You told him to stay away from me?”

He nodded.

“Thanks, Old Man,” I said gratefully. “Fraid he didn’t listen, though. I had to tell him too, just after third period.”

Davey nodded, then gave me a conspiratorial smile. “I’ve been thinkin’… about you… today. At least… parts of you.” He smiled, and then leaned close to my ear. “I can’t wait… till after… school.” Then he lowered his voice to a whisper. “I’m not wearing… any underwear… for you.” He chuckled and left.

As I watched Davey walk away, I watched his no-underwear butt move under his jeans and admired the effect his ‘therapy’ for me had actually had on him. He had us running almost every day, and lifting weights three or four days a week because he decided it would help how I felt. And the effects showed on him.

Oh, it helped my spirit as well. I had begun to feel better, and I rarely had basement dreams anymore. I didn’t feel so ‘on edge’.

Davey made sure we worked out. I made sure we studied, every day. I wasn’t just concerned for Davey; I had fallen behind in my studies after the thing with Geoff.

Davey and I only made love every few days, and then it was always frotting or oral. I liked both and simply didn’t feel ready for any anal. And though we made love less often, our relationship became more physical than it had ever been. Whenever we were alone, we were always touching, or in each other’s arms, or putting our foreheads together, or giving each other the kind of little kisses lovers do when they’re staying connected. Even our study sessions were often done from one or the other’s laps. I didn’t know if all that was part of Davey’s intentional therapy, but it was therapy nonetheless.

And the best studying we did together was when we bent our heads over projects from Dr. Meyers. I learned how to diagram so that Davey could grasp computer processes. And we learned how to think together, which was something of a mental three-legged sack race. But you can learn how to run together in a sack race.

* * * * *

Since the summer, Brandon and I had taken turns calling each other, once every couple of weeks, usually on Saturday morning, or late at night. This particular Saturday, I called Brandon.

“It’s weird, Brandon,” I said, settling back farther into couch. I switched the phone to my other ear so I could lie looking out the window. Even though the heavy rain had messed up my Saturday morning, I liked watching it.

“I’m in love with him, Brandon,” I said. “Really in love with him… more now than ever.”

“So what else is new?” he asked, unconcerned.

“Hey, seriously,” I said. “I’ve been thinking about it — I mean, after everything that’s happened, why do I feel this way? I think about him all the time. I always want to be around him, and I want to touch him all the time.”

Though I was alone in the house, I found myself almost whispering into the phone. “Like, I wondered if maybe it’s some weird mental thing… you know, because of what Geoff did… maybe messing up my head. I’m still fucked up, Brandon. Sometimes, I suddenly feel really down, totally outta the blue.” And then, remembering the feeling, it suddenly hit me again. My throat constricted. “Like now…”

I slowed my breathing, and wiped my eyes dry.

“You OK, Bent?” he said, his voice filled with concern.

“Yeah, I’m alright,” I said, taking a deep breath. “It’s like I’ve got this big ball of hurt that bushwhacks me. I cry so damn easy, and I never did before… I think I really need Davey. A lot.”

“What’s wrong with that? Does it bother Davey?”

“No, he says he likes it.” I twisted the phone cord. “Sometimes I worry that he can’t possibly love me as much as I love him, but then he does stuff and says stuff… Brandon, he cried the first time we made love again.”

“No shit?” he chuckled.

“Yeah, and I sorta did too.”

“What? Both of you?”

“Yeah. At the same time.”

“Why?” He laughed. “Because you were so happy?”

“Maybe,” I said. “I guess we just really missed being together that way, you know.” My cock began to stiffen and I reached into my shorts to straighten it out and pull my balls from between my legs. My hand felt good there, and I left it. “Mostly though, Brandon, I really think it was because we were pretty worked up, too.”

“Worked up? Sexually worked up? That’s why you cried?”


“Damn, Bent,” Brandon said. “What kinda love were you guys making? I’ve never heard of anyone crying because their sex is so hot. That’s wild”

“Well it was, ummm… intense.”

“No shit. Listen, speaking of sex,” he said, “when are you comin’ to California? I’ve been missin’ you that way, too.” Brandon chuckled.

“C’mon, man. I’m serious,” I protested. “It’s never been like that before, not with Davey or anyone else.”

“Oh, and who else have you been with?”

“Well there’s Davey… and Amy… and you,” I said. “Oh, well and…”

“No,” Brandon interrupted. “Don’t say it. What Geoff did doesn’t count as bein’ with somebody. That fuckin’ asshole!”

The rain was coming down hard now. I rolled to my back and listened to its roar on the roof.

“Look, Brandon,” I said, moving on. “Knox says I shouldn’t smother Davey. And I guess, with the way I feel about him, I could do it — smother him, I mean. And on top of that, Davey doesn’t want me to be so bossy. Knox says I should lighten up a little.”

Brandon snorted. “I dunno know about the bossy thing, Bent, but I sure didn’t mind you smotherin’ me last summer. I think you just need to relax. If Davey’s like me, he’s lovin’ you lovin’ him.”

“Well, there’s something else.”

“Oh?” Brandon asked.

“Yeah. I guess I wonder about other guys. I mean, right now, I couldn’t care less about being with anybody else. But Davey and Geoff did other guys and I think sometime Davey’s going to want to do it again.”

“How ‘bout you?” Brandon asked. “Aren’t you ever gonna want to get with some hot dude? What if I show up at your window again?”

Even though Brandon couldn’t see it, I shrugged. “Sex with Davey has been really hot lately. I’m happy… But the problem is, even if I might want to have sex with another guy sometime, it bugs the hell out of me thinking about Davey doing it.”

“How come? You afraid you’re gonna lose him?”

“Yeah or maybe lose what’s special between us… like we did before.”

Brandon was quiet a moment. Then I heard him take a breath. “Look, Michael. You guys are the best friends I’ve ever seen. I think it’d be hard for you to lose him. But you might need to be careful to give him a little breathing room. I mean, you’re only fifteen! It’s not like you’re married or somethin’. It’d be better to let him mess around with other guys occasionally than have him leave you because you tried too hard to keep him tied to you.”

My stomach knotted. “I’d never get with another guy again,” I said, “if it meant I could have Davey to myself.”

“But does he feel that way? You guys just need to talk, Bent. But let him tell you how he feels first; before you say anything. Don’t force what you want on him.”

“Yeah, he’d probably tell me what he thought I wanted to hear.”

“And don’t force the discussion, dude,” Brandon cautioned. “Just wait for it to happen. Right now, you guys are in love and lighting up half Texas when you screw. Enjoy it, OK?”


“And, Michael?”


“You oughta get some counseling,” he said. “Not about you and Davey. That’s cool. But if you’re still fucked-up inside from what Geoff did to you, maybe you should talk to somebody.”

“Maybe,” I said. “But maybe all I need is a little more time.”

When we said our goodbyes, I hung up the phone and stretched out on the couch. I spread my legs wider and pushed my shorts down to stroke. Mom was at the office, and I wondered if I could get Davey to run over in the rain.


One afternoon in early April, Davey and I had just begun studying at the kitchen table when Davey stood up to stretch. I recognized the symptoms; he wasn’t in the mood to study. Instead, he came around behind me and draped his arms over my shoulders, kissing me behind my ear.

“Whatcha doin?” he asked quietly.

I leaned back from my work on the table and into his arms. “Let me see if I can explain,” I said.

“OK,” he said, and came around my chair. He straddled my lap, put his arms on my shoulders, and kissed me. “Tell me,” he said, his eyes mere millimeters away from my own.

I ran my hands up his chest and rubbed his pecs. “You don’t make it easy, Davey.”

He grinned and kissed all over my face.

“Wait, wait, Davey. How am I supposed to explain anything to you if you get me all worked up?”

Davey sucked my upper lip into his mouth and ran his fingers up into the hair at the back of my head, all the while rubbing his butt in my lap.

I lifted his shirt up and pulled it over his head. He pulled mine up and off too. And then I slid my hands up the taut skin of his back, feeling the hardness of his muscles beneath.

Davey slid down off my lap and took my nipples into his mouth — first one, and then the other.

I leaned my head back and closed my eyes while he sucked both my nipples until they were hard. He rubbed my inner thighs with his hands, and pressed his torso between my legs.

Next, he undid my belt and opened up my pants, then pulled them and my briefs down over my hips and thighs, dropping them to my ankles.

Kneeling in front of me, he put his hand around my rock-hard cock and gently pulled back my foreskin. Slowly and carefully, he licked around the crown. I sighed when his warm mouth closed over my cockhead, and he slowly buried his nose almost into my pubes. Then he pulled back and worked his tongue around on my crown. And then he deep-throated me, again.

I ran my hands through his hair and over his shoulders and leaned back to just feel; I did my best to not think about how Geoff claimed to have taught him that. But Davey had other things in mind.

With one hand he held my cock and licked it while with the other hand, he pulled off my shoes and socks, and then my pants over my feet. While still sucking the end of my cock, he undid his own pants and finished undressing so that we were both naked. Then he stood up and took my hand, pulling me up. We grabbed up our clothes and I followed him to my bedroom.

I closed and locked the door while he jumped onto the bed and rolled onto his back. As I walked over, he opened his arms to me and spread his legs.

I lay down on him and wrapped my arms under him.

“Michael,” he said softly into my ear, “can we... I want to… fuck… please?”


He nodded. And immediately, all those Geoff thoughts thrust their way back into my mind. I wondered how I would compare with Geoff, making love like that. Had Geoff really made a bottom out of Davey? I wondered if Davey really squealed like a girl now when he got fucked. I felt my cock deflating and rolled off Davey onto my back.

Davey rolled up onto his side and put a hand on my chest. “I’m sorry,” he said.

I was tired of Geoff intruding into my thoughts every time I wanted to make love with Davey. And I had dreaded us trying anal, not just because of what Geoff had done to me, but also because of the things Geoff had said about fucking Davey. Geoff had used him, fucked all the innocence out of him, and thrown him away. But then I felt used and thrown away too. I looked at Davey and felt unclean for both of us.

Davey quietly wrapped his arms around me and kissed me sweetly on the lips. He lowered his cheek to mine. “I love you,” he whispered. “We don’t ever… have to do that.”

Screw Geoff, I thought. I have to get past this. I got up and retrieved the KY, rolled Davey back onto his back, and knelt between his legs. Before opening the tube, I spent some time rubbing the inside of his legs, as well as his cock and his balls. But I couldn’t get hard again.

On the other hand, his hard cock lay up on his belly. I stroked it and looked into his eyes. “Do me, OK?” I asked.

He sat up, studying my face. “Are you… sure, Mickey?”

“I love you, too,” I whispered. “We do have to do this.”

He searched my eyes one last time before he gently pushed me on to my back. Picking up the KY, he spread apart my legs and watched my face as he lubed my butt and then his cock. He bent over me, and kissed me.

Our eyes stayed locked as I lifted my knees and felt Davey probe for me with his cock. If I hadn’t already been soft, I would have lost my erection then for sure.

I steeled myself and reached down to guide him in.

He paused with his cockhead pressed against my sphincter and looked intently into my eyes.

We both said, “I love you,” at the same time. And smiled.

He pushed forward slowly. Easing his body down onto me, he pressed the last inch in. We wrapped our arms around each other and kissed as he ground deeply into me. He filled me up inside, but after only a moment, that fullness began to feel good in all the right places, and I moaned gratefully as a few more ghosts vanished away.

Davey pushed up on his hands and watched my face as he thrust. And I watched him, my eyes traveling slowly from his eyes to his chest, to his working abs and down his belly, to where the muscles of his lower abdomen formed a “V” that pointed down to where his cock was buried in me.

He bent to kiss my cheek, then my ear, and he whispered. “Do me next.”

“I’m not sure I can,” I whispered back. “I got soft just thinking about it.”

“I’ll get you… hard,” he said, and bent to kiss my neck.

And later, he did get me hard. Very hard.

Afterwards, as we lay with his head on my shoulder, I stroked his hair. “Thanks, Davey,” I said. “I needed to do that.”

He giggled. “I wanted to do that.”

I kissed him on the top of his head, holding my lips to the softness of his hair and filling my nostrils with its fragrance. I wondered if he wanted to do anal because of doing it so much with Geoff, then wondered if I could ever make it good enough for him. I grimaced and shrugged off the thought. I was determined to get that jerk out of my mind.

Davey, as if reading my thoughts, said, “Nobody does it… as good as you… Mickey.” He scooted up so that he could look down into my eyes. “You love me… when we… do it,” he said. “It makes it… all different.”

I smiled up at him and wondered if he knew how perfect he was for me.

“See,” Davey said, “like that,” and he grinned. “You’re loving me… right now.”

“Yeah,” I said, brushing his hair back from our faces. “I’m loving you real hard right now.”

His face turned serious. “I want you,” he said, “to love me as much… as I love you.”

“Davey,” I said, smiling. “You sure know how to say the right things. Loving you is my favorite thing to do.”

We looked at each other just the way Larice said we couldn’t in public, and our cocks began to grow hard between us once again.

Davey started to reach between us, but I stopped him. “No Davey,” I insisted. “I need to get back to what I was working on.”

He pouted and I rubbed the back of his head. “Come on,” I said. “Let me explain what I was working on”

“If you… have to,” he sighed.

I rolled us to our sides and slipped my top leg between his two legs. Resting my hand on his hip, I tried to think where to start. “Well,” I said, “I heard Dr. Meyers talking about how important record sorts are becoming to databases. You see, everybody is keeping more and more data on computers. And they’ve got to be able to find pieces of information in the data. They have to be able to sort through tons of information. It’s like going through a closet looking for stuff. You have to be able to find just what you’re looking for. But these are like really, really big closets, and sorts have to be fast.”

Davey wrapped his legs around my one leg more tightly and pressed his balls against the top of my thigh. I enjoyed the sensations, but continued, “Anyway. Dr. Meyers said that anyone who comes up with a really fast sort could make a fortune. He’s taught me about a couple of sorts— binary sorts and bubble sorts. Anyway, I figured it’d be nice to make a fortune, so I was thinking about how to invent a faster sort.”

I slid my hand over to his butt, kneading it. Then a glimmer of an idea came to me. “Hey, I just had a thought.”

Jumping up, I ran to the kitchen and sat down, sketching out a quick little flow chart and then some simple assembly code. Davey came up and looked over my shoulder.

“You inspired me, Davey,” I told him. “Or rather, the dual cheeks of your beautiful butt did.”

He came around my chair and bent over my paperwork. When he did, I leaned back and admired his smooth ass and muscular back with my left hand. Davey sat down in my lap and continued to look over my work, blocking my own view.

Davey sitting naked in the middle of my own nakedness was a bit of a distraction. After all, I had only cum once. As he picked up my pencil and began to write, I put my hands on his hips and positioned him so that his balls hung down between his legs and rested on my pubes and over the base of my cock.

“Don’t mess up my work,” I said, as I moved him around in my lap by his hips. My cock began to rise. I felt up and down the sides of his legs and drew my fingers up the inside of his thighs.

“Don’t,” he protested, his eyes still glued to my paperwork. “I’m… thinking.”

“So am I.” My cock was hard enough for me to jerk it up under him with the muscles of my pelvic floor, but he ignored me. So I scratched his back, and gently massaged it, and kissed up his spine. I stayed hard though and felt his perineum tighten over my pubic bone as his own cock stiffened.

“What are you doing?” I asked as I continued to massage his back.

He handed the paper back to me and I spread it out on his back to look at it. Meanwhile, Davey reached down between our legs and pulled my cock up to his. I studied his doodles on my flow chart and a couple of cryptic notes he wrote on my coding. It just looked like a mess, and then… suddenly, I thought I understood! Was that what Davey was trying to do?

At that moment, Davey lifted himself off my lap, held my cock pointed up, and slid his still loose butthole down onto me. I dropped the paper and moved my hands back to his waist.

* * * * *

Two days later, I laid the finished flow chart, pseudo code, and assembly down in front of Dr. Meyers and then stood next to Davey in front of his desk.

“I want to test this,” I told him, struggling to restrain my excitement.

He looked it over. “What does it do?”

“It’s an async, multi-threaded sort. Right now it uses VMS syscalls, but we can tailor it to other platforms.”

“And this?” Dr. Meyers asked, pointing to a line of pseudo code. “Is that what I think it is?”

“Resetting process priority,” I said, shrugging. “Everything waits on the sort, so we elevate the priority in the table manager. Because we split out into multiple threads, the impact is low. That all was Davey’s idea.”

Dr. Meyers grunted. “I’m not convinced that bumping priority is the way to go,” he said. “It’s a little like cheating. And what’s this?”

“Dual in-memory reference tables,” I said.

He raised his eyebrows. “You’ll need to lock the tables down so they don’t get swapped out of memory and you’ll need to keep the table size down.”

I pointed to the paper. “Here’s where we lock them into memory. And as for size, I treat both as stacks.”

“Stacks?” he asked. “How do you…” He looked back down at the paper. Well I’ll be damned. That’s clever. That’s damned clever… ingenious!”

Dr. Meyers studied everything more carefully. “This is good, Michael.” He looked up at me and then back to the paperwork. “By all means, let’s test it. This might be good as in marketable. Even if it tests well, you’ll need to tweak it and then we have to bench mark it. And if it’s fast enough – without priority bumping,” He studied the paper, talking almost more to himself. “We’ll need to black box it… compile it so users can’t see the code. Then we need to patent and copyright.”

He studied the flow chart, scratching his chin. “We might be able to license this out. But we need to move fast. Lots of people are working on sorts right now. I don’t think anyone else is going to come up with something as clever as this. Some of this is really unique. It still won’t hurt to hurry. You’ve done really well, Michael, Davey. This is inspired work.”

Davey giggled.

Dr. Meyers looked up at us and I threw an arm over Davey’s shoulder. “Davey’s good at this,” I said proudly. “We work good together.”

Davey giggled again and whispered quietly in my ear, “Tell him… my butt… inspired you.”

I know I flushed red, but Dr. Meyers had gone back to reading through our work. He nodded to himself. “So Davey helped? No surprise there.” He looked up at Davey and smiled. “Davey’s brain is wired differently… but Davey can think.”

I still had my arm over Davey’s shoulder and Davey put his arm around my lower back to pull me closer.

Dr. Meyers handed back my paperwork. “Go code it and give it a shot, but don’t leave a copy on the computer. Copy it off onto tape and delete it from disk the moment you’re done.” He looked at where the sides of our bodies pressed together, and I self-consciously stepped away from Davey.

Dr. Meyers looked up at me, “I don’t want any question of ownership on this, Michael. Give me a dollar. You’re about to buy time on our computer and pay for a tape; for your own work.” He winked. “Gotta satisfy the lawyers.”

I handed him a dollar.

“Don’t leave any of your work on my machine. OK?”

“Yes sir.”

He leaned back in his chair and looked up at the ceiling. “It could be fast. It really could be fast.” Then he glanced at me. “I’m no business person, but besides patents and copyrights, we will need to do a little marketing. And if we sell this, there’ll be licensing to write up and we’ll need to do something about any income you guys collect. I may need to find us someone who knows about these things.”

“Davey and I know somebody,” I said. “He might be a little busy, but I think he might be willing to help us.”

Davey looked questioningly at me.

“Ed,” I said and turned to Dr. Meyer, “I have a good friend at school, Chase Armstrong. His dad is a big business executive with THC.”

“That could work,” Dr. Meyers nodded. “See if he’ll meet with us.”

“You’ll go too?”

“Sure,” he smiled. “Someday I might want to work for you two. Now go tweak that sort and make it fly.”

I grinned, and Davey and I jogged out of his office. There was no one in the hall, so I was free to wrap my arms around Davey and lift him from the floor. I spun around with him, letting out a whoop of glee. Davey laughed. When I put him down, we raced for the computer room.

* * * * *

Things grew so busy, that I almost forgot Geoff. My sixth sense about him stayed strong and I was aware when he was around, but I didn’t let that bother me. If he wanted to stare at me, fine.

Geoff tried to talk to me from time to time, in the hallways, but I generally ignored him. The guy amazed me. He had no idea that ‘no’ meant ‘no.’

One afternoon, when I was walking to my next class with Larice, Geoff blocked our path. “Hey, Bentolli.”

We stopped. “Hi, Geoff,” I said reluctantly.

He reached into his pocket. “I saw this the other day and thought of you. Lemme know if you like it.” He handed me a cassette tape and then took off down the hall. “See ya later,” he said.

I looked at the cassette. It was actually a good looking recording of some classic Spanish Guitar pieces, on an expensive import label.

Larice watched Geoff disappear down the hall. “Weren’t he and Davey…” she started to ask.

“Yeah,” I said.

She looked back at me. “Is he after you now?”

“He thinks so,” I said. My face felt hot as I turned toward my next class.

“He’s really cute,” Larice commented, catching up to me.

“Not a chance,” I said, ready to change the subject.

“Well I don’t blame you after he stole Davey away like that, but you can’t blame me for trying.” Larice paused, and then made a big show of sighing. “Guess you wanna keep Davey for yourself then.”

I laughed and threw an arm over her shoulder as we walked down the hall. “I was gonna throw this away, but here — you take it.” I handed her the cassette.

“Some consolation prize,” she retorted. But she put it in her purse as we continued down the hall together.

* * * * *

We had a guest Saturday night for family dinner. Officer Thomas Richardson of the San Antonio Police Department. He had only dated Maggie a couple of times, but she really liked him. Davey and I had liked him too, instantly. He looked like ‘GI Joe cop’ with a solid military bearing, and he was built like a line backer with the strong jaw and soft eyes of a young John Wayne. Though he wasn’t much taller than me, he looked like he could take on anybody.

We didn’t have much in common to talk about after dinner until the conversation came around to the Dallas Cowboys. It wasn’t the best of times for Cowboy fans and we lamented together.

Before he left, the three of us – him, Davey, and me – all tossed around a football in the street for a while, and did the male bonding thing.

Later, Davey and I were alone outside, sitting on the porch steps. “I like him,” I told Davey.

“Me too,” he said, staring off toward the street.

“Do you think he and your mom are serious?”

Davey shrugged.

“He’d make a neat dad,” I speculated.

Davey put an arm over my shoulder and moved closer.

“Even if you do get a new dad, Davey,” I said, “We’re still going to be together.”

He laid his head over onto my shoulder and I put an arm around behind him.

* * * * *

The next night was Sunday Night. If there was any night of the week, not meant for running, it was Sunday night. I groaned and sunk further into the couch as Davey tried to coax me out.

“Davey,” I complained, “ever since you decided that running was good for me, you’ve taken it to an extreme. It’s dark outside! Besides, I’m tired. I didn’t sleep much last night.” I raised back up the technical reference manual I’d been studying, holding it between our faces.

A hand appeared over the top of the book, and pulled it down past Davey’s broad grin. “But it’s…it’s nice, outside,” he said. And then he winked. “It’s still early. There’s a… full moon. It’s very… romantic.”

I glanced toward the kitchen, hoping Davey didn’t say that loudly enough for Mom to hear and shushed him. “OK, Davey,” I whispered. “I guess I better get you out of here before you decide to make love on the couch. But I warn you; I’m gonna make you pay. We’re going to run the whole way… uphill!”

He wriggled his eyebrows. “The quarry bluff?” he asked. “It’s… private up there.”

“Damn, you are in a mood,” I said, and then winked. “I like it.”

The bluff top was private, and balmy in the evening breeze. The moon was high and bright, eerily illuminating the white limestone of the quarry below. Beyond the quarry we could see the headlights of cars on the loop, and beyond that, planes were landing and taking off from the airport.

I led the way back west along the edge of the bluff. Where the bluff turned south it became little more than a rise. Still, we could look down on McAllister Freeway, and back left toward the lights of downtown.

Just as we rounded the bluff and could see the city, we came upon a wide limestone shelf, a few feet below the top of the bluff. Davey and I climbed down there and sat on the edge, dangling our legs. The lights of the city spread across the horizon from downtown at our left, all the way to the loop on our right. And below us, the well-lit McAllister freeway snaked through the dark of Olmos Basin.

I watched Davey’s eyes take an inventory of all that was spread below us. In the moonlight, the planes of his face seemed more masculine, his gaze more adult. And in one of those revelatory moments, I thought I had a glimpse of the man Davey was going to be.

“You know,” I said, “Your hair turns almost silver in the moonlight— including…” I ran my fingertip over the top of his eyebrows. “Including the little ones here.”

He turned toward me and his eyes glistened. “Your irises look so dark,” I said, getting lost in them.

Davey smiled. “Your hair… is all black and… shiny… Mickey,” he said. “And your eyes… sparkle… and you look…” He bit his lip. “… sorta… young again… in the… moonlight… young… like when we first… started… being together.” He ran a finger up and down the side of my neck. “I like… your long neck… Mickey. The moonlight… makes me want to… kiss it.”

He leaned towards me and clasping my shoulders, he kissed my neck, then my cheek, then my lips. And then he put his forehead to mine. “You’ve always… been… pretty,” he said.

I reached behind his head and rubbed the back of his neck. He sighed. Then I kissed his cheek. “You too,” I said. “I wonder how you look naked in the moonlight. Say… do your think our matching rubbing spots glow in the moonlight? Especially if we get them close to each other?”

He giggled.

A car honked on the freeway far below and I looked down to the river of light the freeway formed. “I like it up here at night,” I said, laying back down on the flat rock. I put my hands behind my head and looked up into the night sky. Because of the glare from the city lights, I could only make out a few stars. I could see Orion, or at least Orion’s belt. Close to it, a solitary puff of cloud, illuminated from below, floated across low and fast on a high breeze.

Davey stretched out on the rock, using my lower belly as a pillow for the back of his head. I reached down and stroked his hair.

“Davey,” I said. “Thanks for making me run tonight.”

He nodded, the back of his head digging in over my appendix.

“Thanks for making me run, period,” I said. “It’s really helped how I feel. You know, I think I’m almost back to normal now.”

“I like taking… care of you,” Davey said. “I want to keep… taking care of you.”

I sighed. “I like you taking care of me. But then, I’ve always liked taking care of you, too – not being bossy,” I hastily added. “But I always felt… I don’t know… I guess I always felt like I was who I was supposed to be when I was taking care of you.”

“But now,” he said, “I like… taking care… of you.”

The answer seemed obvious. “Maybe,” I suggested, “we can take care of each other, you know? I mean, I like taking care of you and you like taking care of me… and I like you liking to take care of me and I like liking liking you taking care of me and I like liking liking liking…”

Davey lifted his head and dropped it hard back into my belly, once, twice…

I pulled up my knees and hardened my belly. “OK! OK!” I said laughing, and reached down to hold his head against my belly so he’d quit using it as a trampoline. “My point is that maybe we can take care of each other. Deal?”

“Yeah. Deal.”

A puff of breeze came down on us, bringing the scent of oak from the trees above us, and jasmine from someone’s garden. The sound of the cars on the freeway below was as steady and relaxing as rain. We grew quiet and I stroked Davey’s hair again.

“When I was real little,” I said, “before you guys moved in, I remember being at the doctor one time. There were two boys there about my age, brothers, and they were playing together in the waiting room. They ignored me and didn’t ask me to play. And I wished I had a brother. And then sometimes I’d see kids playing together and I wanted another kid to play with too. I wanted a friend… When you moved in, Davey, I got my wishes.”

Somewhere below, a kid yelled in Olmos Park. Another answered. Above, more clouds scooted across under the moon.

“Davey,” I said, smoothing back his hair, “you and me… we don’t have dads or brothers or even any other ‘best’ friend. But you’re better than all those for me. And I need to take care of you. It’s like, how I love you— how I need to love you.” I gave his scalp a nervous rub. “Oh, I know it sounds all mushy and doesn’t make any sense. I guess I just… I’m just really grateful for you Davey. I wouldn’t trade you for a hundred brothers, or a thousand friends.” And then thinking out loud, I lowered my voice. “I wouldn’t even trade you for a dad.”

Davey was quiet, and I wondered if he understood what I had tried to say. I wasn’t even sure I understood what I had tried to say. But then Davey sat up and scooted up beside me. He lay alongside me with a leg over my middle and an arm on my chest and propped his head on his other arm. He looked at me thoughtfully.

“Where you gonna… go to college… Mickey?”

“I don’t know. Maybe here in town the first couple of years.”

“Mom says… you can go… anywhere you want,” he said, brushing my hair back off my forehead.

I shrugged. “Well, I might want to go here in town for the first couple of years at least.”


I was looking at ‘why’ and wondered if I should tell him. “I might have a good reason.”

He lowered his face so close to mine that the tip of his nose brushed my cheek. “Me?” he asked quietly.

I nodded, looking into his dark eyes. “Yeah.”

He laid his palm on my cheek. “Mickey… could we… get an apartment? Could we… live together? I can mow… lots of yards… to pay for it.”

“Yeah,” I smiled. “I’ve thought about that too. But we can get you some other job besides mowing yards. And we could even live together if I got a full-ride scholarship somewhere, like if I got everything paid for. You can come up and live with me. You could get a job and I could get a part time job and we could get an apartment together.”

His brow creased. “Would it be… my place… too? Like not… not just your apartment— and me living… with you? But… my apartment… too?”

“Hell yes!” I said. “Especially if you help pay for it.”

He smiled, and kissed me softly on the lips. “Yeah,” he said. “I would… like living… together… even if it wasn’t… my apartment… too.”

“Davey,” I said, lightly scratching his back. “I have thought about us living together. And I just wanted to say, I know all that’s like a couple of years away. And I know… well it’s possible that we might not still be boyfriends. But we’ll always be best friends no matter what. And even if we’re just best friends, I want to be together.”

His smile became huge. He wrapped his arms around me and hugged me hard, laying his head on my chest. Then his head popped back up and he looked down at me. “Are you… happy… Mickey?”

“You know I am, doofus. You know I’m very happy.”

He returned his head to my chest. “Me too… Old Man. I’m… very happy.”

Wrapping my arms around him, I watched as even more clouds moved in overhead. “Davey?” I asked. “Have you thought about going to college?”

“I can’t, Mickey.”

“I don’t know. You’re sure good at math.”

He shook his head. “I’d have to finish high school first.”

I kneaded his back. “You are going to finish high school, Davey. I promised I’m going to get you through it and I will.”

He pulled me tighter with his arm around my chest. “But I can’t… do college,” he said, and I wasn’t sure I could argue with him. Davey pulled up my shirt and put his fingertip into my navel. “Mickey,” he asked, “If we get an apartment, what kinda… what kinda job would I get?”

I shrugged under him. “I don’t know. Human calculator? Fashion model?”

“I could be a… barber,” he said. “I like fixin’ your… hair.”

“Maybe,” I said, thoughtfully. “I sure like it when you ‘fix’ my hair. Should I let you try cutting it some time? Whoa, wait— forget that.”

“Let me… do it. I’ll do a… good job.”

“Hmm… Let me think about it, Davey,” I said, chuckling. “I’m not sure how fast I can grow it back.”

He drew circles around my navel with his fingertip. Then he planted a kiss over it. “I like your… tummy,” he murmured. Then he measured my side, putting his thumb behind and his fingers over my right oblique muscle. He held up the measurement. “But you’re too… skinny.”

I ignored him. “You know, Davey, there’s a lot of jobs you could do. We can start looking at things to see what you like, you know? Maybe we can talk to one of the school counselors to get help figuring things out.”

Davey pulled my shirt higher and kissed the bare skin or my chest. “Your skins is so… soft… Mickey.” He licked my sternum. “And you taste… good.”

He drew wider and wider circles out from my navel with his fingertips, causing my gut to clench reflexively. “Cute muscles,” Davey said, and drew more circles while I just enjoyed the feel and watched the clouds thicken.

Davey looked up at me. “Mickey… you really… want… to live together?”



I rubbed his back. “Really, Davey. I just might never let you go.”

He laid his head back on my belly and his hand moved down into my running shorts. He caressed me, gently rubbing, fondling. “I’d sure like… that. I mean… living together.”

“Me too.”

Davey pushed my running shorts down past my crotch, and nuzzled my privates with his face. I rubbed his back and groaned pleasantly. When he took my cock into his mouth, I closed my eyes to the clouds and let him work on me.

Davey enjoyed giving me head, and he did it well. He liked it when he sent waves of pleasure through my body. And he liked using his hands to fondle my balls and press my perineum. But this time, when his fingers strayed to my butt hole, I knew he had more in mind.

I lifted my hips and he pushed my shorts down farther, then I turned onto my side away from him where I could look out over the freeway and Olmos Basin below. I silently patted my behind and felt him move up to spoon me.

He pushed my shirt up higher and I felt his bare chest against my back. He applied spit to my butt, and then rubbed his cockhead up and down my crack.

And then, for absolutely no reason I could think of, what I had begun to think of as “the sadness” came over me just as Davey entered me. Sometimes it seemed to come suddenly, at the weirdest of times. My eyes began to tear, and my mind wandered.

Davey pressed his whole body to mine and wrapped his arm under my head to cushion it and laid the other over my side, pressing his hand to my belly. He was gentle and moved slowly inside me. He kissed the back of my neck, and moaned out his pleasure behind my ear. Maybe I was sad because it felt so damn good, him holding me like that, in me, loving me – so right.

And then I thought of the night in the surf when Brandon held me from behind and made me feel… treasured. I knew that Davey loved me, but I wondered if he ever “treasured” me. I didn’t figure he ever treasured Geoff… or did he?

The sadness increased, knotting up my inside and a few more tears squeezed out. And I cursed that fucker Geoff for the hundredth time for what he’d done to me; to us. I shuddered.

Davey stopped in mid-stroke and propped up on an elbow to look over my shoulder. “Mickey?” The he saw my tears and pulled out of me. In an instant, he had me wrapped tightly in his arms, my head pressed to his chest. “I’m sorry… Mickey. I’m sorry.”

He hugged me hard and kissed the top of my head, rocking me. It came home to me how stupid I could be. Davey more than treasured me.

I put my hands on his arms, and squeezed his muscles as more tears came. “I’m sorry, Davey. I’m just tired, and a little sad. It comes on me sometimes, mainly at night; being sad. And lately I just cry so damned easily.”

He held me tightly, rubbing his cheek on the top of my head. “I guess,” I said, “I’ll need you to take care of me a little longer, huh?” And then I shuddered again and he squeezed me more tightly.

I kissed the top of his arm and rested in his embrace until the sadness began to pass. When I felt better, I looked up into his face. We kissed. I smiled. “Finish what you were doing,” I encouraged him. “I liked it.”

“You do it,” he said softly. “You do… me… Old Man”

I chuckled. “I’m all soft now, Old Man. Don’t think I can.”

“I’m soft… too,” he said. He moved over me and backed his butt up to my crotch. There was a flash of lightning from the East.

“Damn, Davey. See what you set off,” I teased. “Did you see that lightning?”

He giggled.

Of all the amazing things I loved about Davey’s body, at that moment, his butt was my favorite. I looked down to where I cupped him there with my lap. His skin gleamed soft and white in the moonlight. Holding his hip, I pulled him back snug against me and moved forward to kiss the back of his neck. It always amazed me how perfectly his butt fit my crotch. And my cock hardened almost instantly.

“You’re butt is a deadly weapon, Davey,” I whispered behind his ear. “Whenever you want to get me hard, this works I good.”

He giggled and wiggled back against me. Then he spit in his hand and rubbed it back into his crack.

I spit and applied it to my cock, then entered him and wrapped his body in mine. I ran my hand up to one of his nipples and rubbed it with a fingertip while I chewed his ear.

“Davey,” I asked softly, “Do I ever make you feel treasured?”

He groaned, and stroked himself.

“Because, Davey,” I said, “I’d trade everything else in my life for you. I’d trade the whole world for you.”

There was another flash of lightning. A cool breeze moved through the trees and washed down over us. And in the far distance, there was the faint rumble of thunder.

I wrapped his body more tightly in mine, and made love to him under the approaching storm.

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