Things Are Different -- Chapter 7
Sorry for the delay, but it is not like I didn't warn you. I hope you enjoy this new chapter. I will post the next in a week or two. Like always let me know what you think at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks.
I have seen snow that fell in May
And I have seen rain on cloudless days
Some things are always bound to change
There ain't no ash will burn
Love is a precious thing I'm told
It burns just like West Virginia coal
But when the fire dies down it's cold
There ain't no ash will burn
You say this life is not your lot
Well I can't be something that I'm not
We can't stoke a fire that we ain't got
There ain't no ash will burn
In every life there comes a time
Where there are no more tears to cry
We must leave something dear behind
There ain't no ash will burn
There is one lesson I have learned
There ain't no ash will burn*
Vanessa's voice seemed to carry all the emotions of the world whether she was singing an old time hymn or a contemporary folk song. Most of my attention was on Scott as his fingers danced across the strings of his banjo. I envied his obvious talent and passion for the music. Could I have that kind of passion for something?
An oasis existed within the circle of fire light and I was content to lose myself in the music. There were a few others and I gathered from their conversations that they were all musicians or singers of one sort or another. Occasionally a loud raucous would intrude, but we paid it little mind.
From my position on the ground I also had the inadvertent advantage, that despite the inadequate flickering light, I could see up the leg of Scott's shorts to some extra thigh and a flash of tighty-whities.
I spent most of my time sitting there trying to figure out what to do next and massaging the growing burn of the coals in my stomach. Maybe I need some Tums. How am I going to be able to see Scott every day, work with him, without slipping up? Why shouldn't I slip up? What do I have to lose? Everything? I've had nothing before. Shit!
The fire popped loudly and a spray of orange sparks was carried upward into the night. It is funny how little things can catapult one into another place and time. A smell or flash of an image pulls a memory forward and I am there again for good or ill.
The aroma of wood smoke made me ten years old again sitting by a fire on a beach thousands of miles away, though when you are ten distances like that are unfathomable. Kapono, my best friend . . . only friend at the time is sitting so close our knees are touching. The surf is at our back, there are sheltering Kiawe trees in front of us and planes carrying tourists coming into the Kahului airport fly overhead. Between us and the trees is a fire and on the other side is Kapono's father. He says his name is Ke'ali'i and that it means chief, because he is a chief of the sovereign Hawaiian people and that Kapono is his heir. He talks like that a lot, but I really don't know what he is talking about.
My mother and I have been camping at the beach for several months already, Kapono and his family arrived a couple weeks previously. Running around in the sun wearing nothing but shorts had turned my skin a dark nut brown and at first Kapono had thought I was a local, a native, but as soon as I spoke he knew I was a haole, a foreigner. Ke'ali'i said as natives the land was theirs and they had the right to be there. Even at ten I was beginning to suspect that this was not just camping, but the tropical climate made that less important.
Ke'ali'i strummed on a ukulele and sang in a voice that was not great, but was passionate. Occasionally Kapono would join in his clear boyhood soprano.
Could you just imagine if they came back
and saw traffic lights and railroad tracks.
How would they feel about this modern city life?
Tears would come from each others eyes as
they would stop to realize
that our land is in great, great danger now.
All of the fighting that the king had done
to conquer all these islands,
now there's condominiums.
How would he feel if saw Hawai'i now?
How would he feel?
would his smiles be content
rather then cry?
Cry for the gods, cry for the people
cry for the lands that were taken away
and in it you'll find Hawai'i.
UA MAU KE EA O KA `AINA I KA PONO O HAWAI'I!
(Israel Kamakawiwo Ole' - Hawai'i' '78)
"Hey dreamy," I was brought out of my reverie when Dani plopped down next to me.
"Enjoying the show?" I blushed slightly thinking about the 'show' I was secretly enjoying.
"Yeah, I love the music." I looked at Dani. Her eyes were half lidded and she swayed slightly, but her speech was not slurred. Her arrival brought with it the unmistakable aroma of green.
"Somehow I thought you would. It's not really my thing." I just nodded my head. What else could I say? She put her arm around me and she leaned her head against my shoulder. A finger lazily traced its way up my bare arm.
"What are you doing?" I tried not to sound too annoyed, but I know that I don't usually carry that off very well.
"You have such nice skin," She was tracing little patterns, lightly tickling the very light down of hair I have on my arms.
"Um, Okay . . ." I tried to turn my attention back to the Scott and the music. Her touch was tantalizingly enjoyable though and annoying too.
"Could you do me a favor?" Oh, crap! Where was this going? I knew how some people can get when a little high.
"Um . . ." NO is what I wanted to say.
"I'm fighting with Devon. He's being a drunken jerk, or just drunk, which is the same thing, anyway. So I'm going home with my friend Sarah. She's all clean and straight like you. So can you make sure Devon gets home okay? Thanks. I love you, bye." The words tumbled out of her mouth; she kissed me on the cheek, hugged me and dashed off. I didn't even have time to say "um" again. I just stared at her retreating back. Who knew Devon could be a jerk?
They were finishing up another song as I turned my attention back to the music. I thought to myself; why should I babysit Devon? I have cash and a phone; I can get myself home and Devon can . . . whatever.
Where were you when I was falling?
Gentle like the dogwood leaves
Where were you when I was simple?
Where were you when I was kind?
Pulling up the wildflowers for you
Where were you when I was blind*
(*Lyrics copyright of Mean Mary James)
With conclusion of the song Scott started to gather his things and put his banjo away. It was over?
I went over to Scott and Vanessa.
"Show's over now, huh?"
"Yeah, I got a strict curfew. They don't let people that jump off bridges out past midnight." Vanessa hit Scott in the shoulder when he said that, but he just laughed.
"Oh." How do you joke about something like that? Why am I always fumbling for words?
"Soooo, thanks for hanging out. Hope that music wasn't too folksy or weird or whatever for you."
"No, I really, I mean really liked it." I could feel this gulf opening up between me Scott. He stood there with his banjo case in hand. I suddenly felt too hot. If I reached out with my hand I would barely be able to touch his shirt.
"Come on Scott, you can't be late." Vanessa intruded on what was really an awkward silence.
"Oh yeah, sorry gotta run," Scott said as he turned to go, "See you on Monday." He gave me a smile and a wave and Vanessa hurried him off. I watched him walk up to the house, slower than I think Vanessa wanted him to. When he turned back to look my way I gave a feeble little wave. I didn't want to look too interested, besides, I shouldn't be interested. Damn it.
There were still some people hanging around the campfire so I just started to meander back towards the house without any clear idea of what to do next. That was made a moot point when I was blindsided and tackled to the ground.
"Fuck!" I breathed when I could.
"Hey Dude!" Devon was lying on top of me exhaling a cloud of alcoholic haze into my face.
"Damn, Dani said you were being a jerk." I don't really have much tolerance for drunken people. He was lying on top of me and he is not light. "Get off of me!"
"Sorry dude." He rolled off of me and sat cross legged in the grass.
"Been drinking a little?" I tried to be lighthearted about it.
"Hell no," he practically shouted, "I've been drinking a lot!"
"No shit." He grabbed me into one of his embraces and put his arm around my shoulder.
"You know Jay," his face was mere inches from mine and I could have gotten drunk on his breath, "I really like you."
Great! Now I was in a football beer commercial. What I wanted, of course, was a Lifetime Channel IKEA ad with Scott. That brought me back to the whole SCOTT IS GAY thing and the fact that I couldn't respond the way I really wanted.
"Mmmmmmmmm," was the only response I could muster. What was I suppose to say? `I like your drunk ass too?'
This limited convesation was interrupted by a commotion by the small campfire Scott had been playing at earlier. Before I could comment to Devon about it there was a blue flare of fire that leapt to the tree tops with the whoompf of sudden immolation.
"Wooo - Whooo!" Devon let out a pleased whoop and clapped his hands.
"Uh, I think now would be a real good time to leave." I could already hear the sirens in my head.
"Man, did you see that?"
"Yeah, let's get out of here."
"She left already, made me promise to take care of your drunk ass." I was getting a little panicked as people started to run and shout about the yard.
"She left?" Devon looked completely confused.
I got up and tried to pull Devon up too, but he just laughed and fell over.
"Dude, look at that fire!" He pointed at the leaping flames in the distance, Dani apparently forgotten.
"Crap, come on." It took all my strength to move Devon and when I got him up he leaned most of his weight on me. There was another struggle to get him to move his feet in the right direction.
"You smell good," he commented, his face buried in my neck.
"That's because I don't smell like beer." I replied snidely
I was not the only one that thought it was a good idea to depart and there was a general exodus as the party got completely out of control.
"Where are your keys?" There was no way that Devon could drive.
"Uh? My wha?"
"Keys?" Devon looked at me blankly. I let him lean against the car while I reached into his front pocket.
"Woo! What you got goin' on there?" Devon actually giggled.
"Your keys." I did not need this shit. Good thing his pants were not too tight and I could reach in to find his keys.
Devon passed out as soon as I poured him into the passenger seat, which left me with the dilemma of what to do next. I couldn't take him to his home because I did not know where he lived. If I was more familiar with the area I would have taken him to an all night diner to sober up. It only left me with one choice; my house.
My sense of direction must be better than I thought, because I managed to negotiate the largely unfamiliar nighttime streets without getting too lost.
Opening the passenger door I had to figure out what to do with Devon. I couldn't leave him in the car, could I? No, I guess not.
"Come on big guy, you're going to have to help me a little here." I told the lump of muscle as I tried to maneuver him out of the car.
"Mmmmm," was his only response, but he seemed to be at least partially conscious.
He had to lean most of his weight on me, but I got him to move his feet largely in the correct direction. My biggest concern was negotiating the catwalk to the front door. Of course this was when Devon chose to revive and become fascinated with the trees and more troubling, with the shadowy ground below.
"Whoa, look at the trees!" He exclaimed as he moved out of my grasp and leaned over the rail. "Did you see that?" he slurred the question.
"See what?" I tried to get him off the rail and moving back towards the door.
"I think I saw a wolf." he whispered to me.
"Oh," were there wolves in these woods?
"Or maybe it was a bear."
"Oh," I said again. Or maybe a neighbor's dog or nothing at all I said to myself.
"Come on we are almost there."
Devon put his arms around my neck and leaned into me.
"You smell nice." He commented again nuzzling into my neck.
"You smell like you are ready to barf." I could not even think about enjoying his attentions.
It was dark inside so I assumed my grandmother had gone to bed. That was good because I really did not want to have to explain a drunken Devon to her. Inside I was posed with another problem; where to deposit Devon to sleep it off. The easiest thing would be to dump him on the sofa and not worry about him, but I didn't want my grandmother accidently coming across him in the night or him getting sick all over the place. That meant taking him to my room and that meant helping him to navigate the stairs which I did not relish.
"Come on you. Help me here." Devon was leaning into me again and his nose was snuggled against my neck.
"I like the way you smell."
"Yeah, you said that."
"Come on, put one foot in front of the other." I told him.
"And soon you'll be walking `cross the floor!" Devon finished singing the song from the Christmas special. It did make me smile thinking about the shaky Winter Warlock taking his unsteady steps.
Put one foot in front of the other
And soon you'll be walking `cross the floor
Put one foot in front of the other
And soon you'll be walking out the door
If you want to change your direction
If your time of life is at hand
Well don't be the rule, be the exception
A good way to start is to stand
I guess it wasn't quite the same thing with Devon. A couple times I literally had to lift his legs to get him to step. When my mom drank (or other) herself into a stupor there was no need to move her, she could pass out wherever she was. For some reason I couldn't let that happen with Devon.
I was eventually able to get Devon into the room and I eased him on to the bed, swinging his feet up.
"Jay? Jay?" Devon mumbled.
"Yes, Devon?" I couldn't keep the exasperation out of my voice.
"You're a good guy. I like you."
"I like you too."
"No, no," he was barely mumbling, "I really like you."
"Yeah, yeah," I wasn't really paying attention to him. "I really like you too."
"Yeah," this was true, though maybe not so much right now.
Without warning Devon sat up. Crap, he's going to be sick. Just what I need, I could see it in his eyes and breathing. I dragged him into the bathroom where he let loose with a river of vomitus. The smell was enough to make me gag, but his child like whimpering almost made me laugh. I soothed my hand across his broad shoulders and let my fingers caress his neck as he rested his head against the cool porcelain of the commode. His eyes were half-shut, his lips pouted and he let out with pitiful mewing sounds.
"How you doin'?" I asked running my fingers through his hair, which was surprisingly silky and moving it from his face. In other circumstances I could see touching him like this resulting in an instant erection. Instead, some sort of mothering instinct took over.
In answer to my query Devon tipped his head into the bowl again and let more of his stomach contents out.
"All done?" He nodded sluggishly. "Come on let's get you to bed." It was a struggle to maneuver his uncooperative muscular mass to the bed and he collapsed to the floor a couple times. I pondered leaving him there, but something in me just couldn't do it.
Once on the bed I decided it was best to at least get his shoes and shirt off, which wasn't too difficult. As tempting as it was after seeing his nicely sculpted torso with its quarter sized nipples I did not touch his khaki trousers. He was completely passed out, flat on his back on top of the covers and I couldn't bring myself to even contemplate copping a feel of the lump in his pants. Instead, I just stripped down to my boxers and crawled under the covers on the other side. The queen sized bed had more than enough room to accommodate us without touching. Despite a bed full of half-naked Devon and the revelation that Scott is gay too, sleep did not elude me for long. Being able to disappear into slumberland, no matter the circumstances has, in fact, always been a point of pride with me.
I don't ever remember sharing a bed with anyone other than my mother. That was only because there was often no place else to sleep and sometimes it was the backseat of a car. I typically wake up as quickly as I fall asleep and usually early too, no matter how late I go to bed.
My eyes snapped open as the room started to brighten with the rollback of night to find a muscular arm wrapped around me and a hard warm body pressed against me from behind. I was wide awake instantly. There was no confusing fog of sleep. My brain fired a couple questions at me: "When did Devon crawl under the covers?" and "When did he lose his pants?" I reached behind to feel a hard smooth thigh nestled against me. A little cautious exploration revealed some boxer briefs. The unintended result of my exploration was to push my morning wood to painful limits. Who would not get a boner having someone like Devon spooning you? I brought my hand back and tried to figure out my next move.
Devon was softly snoring behind me as I was trying to decide how to gently extricate myself and 'take care of things', as it were. As he shifted a little I became aware of a similar problem that was neatly sandwiched against the crevice of my cheeks. This is not where I wanted to be, except, in a sense it was where I wanted to be. It just was not a good situation to be in.
When I tried to scoot away a little Devon tightened his arm around me and drew me closer. I could feel his hot breath at the back of my neck and the length of his shaft grind into my backside. I shocked myself by how much I enjoyed the feel of him against me. I had never been with a guy in any way before.
What do I do? I winced a little as a fiery pain from the accumulation of bitter stones that now resided in my stomach lanced through me. As it receded I closed my eyes again and started to feel comfortable in Devon's closeness.
He was sound asleep and he must think I am Dani I thought. That made me seriously jealous, that Dani got to enjoy the warmth, strength and, dare I think it, security and sexuality that Devon radiated. I nestled deeper into his embrace. Carefully I reached back to let my hand trail along his firm muscular thigh. It was very lightly covered in hair. He let out a snort causing me to freeze, but he just pressed his nose into my hair. His breath tickled my neck.
I gently brought my hand back and felt along my own thigh. It was half the size of his and I could feel only the occasional dark hairs that peppered it. My erection was pushing against the waistband of my boxers. When I am excited I leak copious amounts of pre-cum and it was quickly soaking the fabric. That is not something I wanted Devon to accidently discover, fortunately his arm was securely hugging my chest.
Despite my anxiety, other feelings were gaining dominance. The more Devon snored, the less I worried that he would suddenly wake up. I reached back again and ran a hand across the hard globe of his ass cheek. In somnambulant response he pushed forward, thrusting his cock against my ass. I couldn't help myself and pushed back against his hardness, which had to be at least as big as mine. Caught in the feeling I firmly grasp his butt and slid my ass against his cock. Even with two layers of fabric it nested nicely in between my cheeks. I could only imagine the dream that Devon was having. Did it star Dani?
I kept a firm grip on his backside, holding him against me as I carefully worked my ass up and down his shaft. Things happened too fast. His breathing quickened and with a grunt I felt his cock pulse and the hot warmth penetrate through my boxers. Without touching myself, it was enough to send me over the edge and ropes of cum erupted, pushing past the top of my underwear and wetting my stomach and sheets.
As soon as the euphoria of orgasm past, the panic set in and I quickly squirmed out from his embrace and slid out of the covers to the floor. My heart pounding, I peeked over the edge of the bed. Devon had rolled on to his back, his mouth was open and his was still snoring.
Crap! Crap! Crap! What did I just do? How fucking horny and stupid could I be?
I did breathe a sigh of relief realizing that Devon remained in an alcohol induced slumber. Maybe it would just be an embarrassing wet dream to him.
My hand touched my sticky abs. I needed a shower.
My cock was still at half mast when I got into the hot water. The water and steam brought the spunky scent to my nostrils.
What the fuck did I just do? Why did I do it? Am I that fucking horny? Does this mean I'm a bottom?
I wanted to cry, but I wouldn't let myself. No way.
What do I tell Devon when he wakes up?
He was still asleep when I went back into the room. I could still smell the musk of sperm in the room. Maybe he really did sleep through it all. I could only hope.
I quietly got dressed and went upstairs to find my grandmother sipping at a cup of coffee and reading the comics.
"Morning," I mumbled as I poured myself some coffee.
"Good morning." She looked like she had been up for a while. "Did I hear Devon come in with you last night?"
"Um, yeah." At least I didn't have to worry about how to tell her that.
"It sounded like somebody over indulged a little."
"Um, yeah. I don't know his address so I brought him here to crash."
"You didn't drink and drive did you?"
"I don't drink!"
"That's good. He was lucky to have you there to take care of him."
I sat down with my coffee and stared out the window as a less than robust morning sun warmed my face. My mind would not sit still and I fidgeted in my seat. Too many whys, whats and then whats circled through my conscience.
"Good morning. Coffee?" My grandmother asked a decidedly sheepish and uncomfortable looking Devon as he emerged from the stairs. Was he just hung over or did he know?
"Yeah, thanks." She got up and poured him some setting the black brew on the table. He sat and gingerly sipped at the cup.
His eyes were bloodshot and I think this is the first time I had seen him when he did not even have a trace of a smile. God, how badly did I fuck up? I was chewing on the nail of my index finger.
There was just the sound of rustling newspaper until my grandmother yelled out "Bang!" as loud as she could. I just about jumped out of my skin and Devon looked like he was ready to puke. My grandmother let out a barking laugh.
"I'm sorry, but you guys are just too quiet and serious," she said with grin "Sorry Devon." Unfortunately I felt very serious. Devon smiled weakly and just held his head.
"Are you hungry?" she asked.
I was not, but I didn't say anything.
"I don't think so, not yet." Devon answered. "By the way, what time is it?"
"Almost eight-thirty. This is the second time you've turned down my cooking Devon. You are going to give me a complex."
"Eight-thirty! Crap, I have to go."
"What's the hurry?" my grandma asked.
"I forgot who your father was, sorry. Are you okay to drive home?"
"I'm okay, well not okay, but I'm functional."
"Well okay. You be careful. Jayson, make sure Devon gets off okay."
I did not want to do anything of the sort. Or had I already done that? I chewed at my nail.
"Thanks for being all DD for me dude and letting me crash here," Devon told me at the door.
"No problem," I couldn't look him in the face.
"I hope you don't mind, but I took a quick a shower. I was feeling kinda gross." Does he think I'm gross now?
"Nah, no problem."
"Okay, see you Monday."
No Devon hug. He must know. Now what?
"Are you alright?" My grandmother asked when I sat down again with my coffee, staring out the window.
Fucked up, insecure, neurotic and exhausted.