Disclaimer: This story is a work of fiction, and any resemblance to real people or events is coincidental. It contains descriptions of sex between teenage boys and between adult men. If you are offended by this type of material, or if you are forbidden by law to read it, please exit the story now. E-mail comments are gratefully accepted at email@example.com.
Tim got busy on his project for Eagle Scout. I was very impressed with how much planning and methodical research he put into it. He had decided on a landscaping project at a local nursing home, and he recruited Kyle, Tim, and me, along with several boys from his troop and one of the troop leaders, a guy about our age, to help him. Part of the project was to provide a service, but part of it was to exercise leadership by being in charge of getting things done.
About two months after the Sunday morning discussion that prompted him to renew his interest in becoming an Eagle Scout, his work detail assembled on a Saturday morning to start the job. Tim had gotten shrubs, bedding plants, and other landscaping necessities donated by several local nurseries, and Rick let him borrow from work the tools we would need .
I was somewhat surprised at the seriousness with which everybody went at the job. Several problems came up in the course of doing the work, and Tim handled them nicely. I half expected the troop leader to step in and take over one time, but he didn't. He let Tim make a decision, and everything worked out well.
It was a hot morning in April. Tim had devised a work schedule for us, and it included a couple of breaks. The kids took their break by throwing a football around, but the adults took theirs under a shade tree.
"Tim's got this thing really well organized," Sam, the troop leader, said.
"Yeah, we're proud of him," I said.
"How do you fellows happen to know Tim," he asked.
"We're his guardians," I said.
Sam had a very puzzled look on his face, so we explained the arrangement.
"That's really generous of you guys," he said. "Does he divide his time between each of you?"
"No. He lives with us. We live together," Rick said.
At that point, Tim told us the break was over, and we had to get back to work.
"Ole Sam is curiouser than hell right now," Rick said with an evil grin. "I'm sure he thought we both had wives at home."
"I suggest we try to be evasive, if we can. We only tell him the truth if he asks point blank, okay?"
"Sure," Rick said, "and he probably won't."
As it worked out, Sam didn't bring up our living arrangements again. During the lunch break, we got to know him a little, and it turned out he was a hell of a nice guy. He was twenty-six, single, from someplace in Mississippi, and an engineer for the Navy by profession. We asked if he knew our friends Monte and Terry. He worked for the same company that Mont worked for, but he didn't know Terry. Sam and Rick talked about scouting, and each of them told funny stories about things they had done in the scouts. I learned that Rick was more of a badass than I had thought, although I knew he hadn't been an angel. We really enjoyed the guy's company, and I think all three of us left that lunch feeling as though we had made a new friend.
We continued working and sweating on into the afternoon, and Tim finally blew the final whistle at four.
"Hey, guys, I got our pool in shape this week," Kyle said. "My dad said it was okay if we use it today."
There was a chorus of "All right!" and "Cool!" and "Awesome!" from the boys. A couple said they had to get home, but two of the boys, plus Tim and Kyle, of course, said they wanted to swim.
"Are you going to join us," I asked Sam.
"Yeah, I thought I would," he said.
"Great, man," Rick said.
We loaded up Sam's car and Rick's SUV. One of the kids who had to go home had his own car, so he took the other one with him. Philip and Ryan rode with Sam, and, of course, Tim and Kyle rode with us.
We weren't in the car more than ten seconds when Kyle demanded our attention.
"Listen, guys. Do you know what Philip asked me today? If Tim and I were boyfriends."
"Oh, Christ," Rick said in obvious disgust.
"No. Rick. It's okay," Kyle said.
"How can that be okay," Tim demanded.
"Jeez, let me finish," Kyle said. I had noticed that both boys had picked up several of our speech mannerisms, and physical mannerisms, too. "Jeez" was one of Rick's favorite interjections.
"When he asked me that, I thought to myself, Oh, shit, he's going to bust us, and we'll both be kicked out of the troop. I must have had a look of panic or something on my face because, before I could say anything, he said, `Ryan's mine.'"
"What!?" Tim's reaction was classic.
"That's exactly what I said. He repeated himself. He said, "Ryan's my boyfriend.'"
"No, he didn't," Tim said.
"Scout's honor," Kyle said.
"Oh, man. That's unbelievable," Tim said. "Was Ryan the other guy who came to get you out of our tent on that camping trip in January?"
"Yep. He sure was," Kyle said. "They were tentmates."
"And you know what else he said? He said he thinks Sam is gay, too," Kyle announced with glee.
Tim laughed delightedly.
"Did he say what he based that on, Kyle," I asked.
"I asked him that. He said he wasn't sure, but he just had a gut feeling about it."
"When did you have time to talk to him in private," Tim asked.
"We both had to take a leak, so we went behind the nursing home into those woods a little way," Kyle said.
"You guys were talking about this with your dicks hanging out," Tim asked.
"Yeah. So what?"
"Did you see it," Tim asked.
"Oh, yeah. And it's really nice, too. It's like mine, and it looked like it was about..."
"Kyle," I cut in. "Too much information," I said.
"Maybe for you, but I know Rick is dying to hear about it," Kyle said.
Rick reached behind him and tried playfully to slap him. He missed, and the boys howled with laughter.
"Punch him for me, Tim," Rick said.
"I'll kiss him, but I won't punch him," Tim shot back. Tim leaned over and kissed Kyle chastely on the cheek.
"Awww, ain't that sweet," Rick said, mimicking a lisp.
I leaned over and did the same thing to him, and, again, the boys laughed.
Sam was right behind us in an extended-cab pickup, and it suddenly dawned on me that he and the other two boys had probably seen our carrying-on.
Kyle's dad came out of the house just as we walked around to the pool. We had met him several times before, and he had been extremely friendly and nice. He knew all about Rick's and my relationship, and he was fine with it. He knew about Tim and Kyle, too, and two or three times he had teased Tim about having to settle for an ugly boyfriend. Gene Goodson was a totally likeable man, and Rick and I thought Kyle was pretty damn lucky to have him for a dad.
After handshakes all around (Gene already knew Sam and the other two kids), he told Kyle to get us something to drink.
"Did you guys bring your suits," Gene asked.
Rick and I looked at each other.
"Duh!" Rick said.
I looked at Sam, Philip, and Ryan, and they all wore decidedly disappointed looks.
"That's no problem," Gene said. "Swim naked. Me and my boys do it all the time. Nobody can see you back here, and my wife's in Charleston visiting her sister. If I didn't have to be somewhere in thirty minutes, I'd join you."
"But what if one of us..."
"Tim. Come here," he said. He grabbed Tim in an affectionate headlock and gave him a nuggie. "If it happens, it happens, son. Just ignore it, and it'll go away. It's not like y'all ain't all seen `em before."
Tim blushed more than I had ever seen him blush before.
"You understand what I mean, son," Gene asked.
"Yes, sir," Tim said, and Gene turned him loose.
Kyle came out with a tray of cokes in plastic cups. The boys all grabbed for one, leaving Rick, Sam, and I to go after the last three. They moved away from the grown-ups, and they all started getting undressed to get into the pool.
"He didn't put anything in those, I know," Gene said. "My older son would have, at least for him and his buddies, but I know Kyle didn't. Come over here."
He led us to a cabinet that had a padlock on it. He fished out his keys and opened the cabinet door. Inside was a full array of liquor.
"What'll it be? A little Jack Daniels?"
"I'd better not," Sam said.
"Son, you ain't in charge of them boys right now," Gene said. "Philip and Ryan's daddies are two of my closest friends. We've known each other since the fourth grade, and I guarantee you they'd both want you to have a drink right now, if you wanted one, kids or no kids. Those boys know adults will take a drink. You ain't going to shock them. Hell, they'd be in this cabinet themselves, if I didn't keep it locked, and that's a fact, Sam."
"I don't know," Sam said.
"Son, I know you want a drink, and I know you need a pick-me-up after spending the day with those hellions," Gene said. His Southern accent was charming, and he was obviously an educated man, despite his good-ole-boy grammar flaws.
"Okay, twist my arm," Sam said.
"That's the way," Gene said. He poured a slug into Sam's cup, and then he did the same honors for me and Rick. "Y'all lock this cabinet when y'all are finished, okay boys?"
"Okay," I said.
"Kevin, I'm leaving you in charge of the liquor. You make sure this bottle is empty by the time y'all leave here tonight, you hear?"
I chuckled and grinned. "Okay," I said.
"Kyle, come over here," he called to his son.
Kyle came trotting up, his dick flapping as he ran.
"In about an hour, call and order some pizzas. Give them the credit card number and tell `em to leave `em on the front porch so you don't have to go out there naked to get `em. Did Timmy do good today?"
"Oh, yes, sir. He did great," Kyle said. There was obvious pride in his voice.
"I told y'all he would. Did all the boys show up?"
"Yes, sir. Two of them had to leave when we were finished, though. They couldn't come over."
"Well, you know I'm proud of both of y'all. I would have been there today, if I could have been." Then, addressing Rick and me, "I have too damn much going on." Then, "Go on and play with your friends, Son. You're spending the night with Tim, right?"
"Yes, sir," Kyle said.
"Well, y'all have fun. Oh, and if your brother calls, tell him Mama and I decided he can go on that trip, but he has to pay for it."
Kyle's face lit up in a huge grin. "Okay, Daddy. I'll tell him."
"Good night, Kyle. I love you." He kissed Kyle on his forehead.
"I love you, too, Daddy."
Kyle trotted off to rejoin the boys in the pool.
"Rick, Kevin, I want to thank y'all for all y'all have done for him in the last four months. He's like a different child. I feel like I've got my son back now."
I was speechless at that revelation, but Rick piped right in.
"Thank you for letting us be his big brothers, Gene."
"It's damn hard being a kid, but it's even harder being a gay kid. You boys have been outstanding role models for him and Tim. Thank you." Gene got an almost startled look on his face, and then he looked at Sam. "Shit, I think I just fucked up big time."
"Naw. I knew. About these guys, at least," Sam said.
"Phoooow," he said. "Thank Jesus for that. Just forget about what I said about the kids, okay?"
"No, I'm not going to forget it. I always like to know who my brothers are," Sam said.
"You mean...," Gene started to say.
"Yeah," Sam said, "but I've been way deep in the closet until I met these guys today. I love the scouts, and I want to stay a troop leader, so I can't come out to everybody just yet. But seeing Kevin and Rick interact with those boys made me know I've got some serious re-thinking to do."
"Jesus Christ, look at the time. I wish I could stay, but I can't. Kevin, I meant it about making sure that Jack's all gone tonight, you hear? Y'all have fun tonight with the boys. I sure ain't going to have fun where I'm going. Business dinner on a Saturday night. Can you believe that?"
Gene was gone as fast as he had appeared.
Sam and I had been working on our drinks while we had been talking to Gene, but I had noticed Rick hadn't even had a sip of his.
"I don't know about you guys, but that water looks pretty nice to me," Rick said. He walked over to the lounge chairs, got undressed, and headed into the pool. The kids cheered when he dove in.
There was an awkward silence between Sam and me. I had a million questions for him, just as I'm sure he had a million questions for me, but neither of us said a word. Finally, after we watched Rick do a cannon ball flip off the diving board, Sam spoke.
"You won the prize, I think."
"What are you talking about," I asked.
"Rick, of course."
"I think so, too," I said. "He's great with the kids."
"I'll bet that's not all he's great with," he said.
I was a little surprised he said that, but I was proud, nevertheless.
"You said earlier today that you're single," I said.
"I am right now. I've had boyfriends, though. Just not since moving here."
"How long has that been?"
"Two years," he said. "I get over to Tallahassee or Ft. Walton now and then when it gets too bad, but that's not really my style. I'm more like you guys. I want a mate. A life partner."
I lit a cigarette.
"Can I have one of those," Sam asked.
"Sure." I handed him my pack and my lighter.
"I thought I was the only smoker left on earth," he said.
I just laughed.
We finished our drinks at about the same time, and I wanted a little more. I could tell Sam did, too.
"Here, let's split this. It's probably watered down to hell by now, but I know he won't drink it." I divided Rick's untouched drink between us.
"He doesn't drink," Sam asked.
"Yeah, he does, in theory, but he has a terrible fear of what he calls empty calories," I said.
"What is he, some kind of Olympic athlete or something? He looks like he could be."
"Naw. He's not Olympic material. Right now he's all about marathon. Used to be, he was into triathlon. He had a bike accident right before New Years, so he's quit tri for the time being. He'll be back to tri, though. Marathon's a challenge, for sure, but I think he'll run tri again, someday."
"He's not really built like a runner," Sam said.
"I know. He knows it, too."
"Those shoulders are incredible. Where'd he get those?"
"Those are surfing shoulders. Rick's misspent youth was on a surfboard. Surfers have to paddle a lot, and their paddling gradually builds up those huge shoulder muscles."
The pizza person came just then. He or she rang the doorbell, and we heard it out back. I hadn't noticed that Kyle had called in an order, but he obviously must have. He went through the house to get it, and he brought back six extra-large pizzas. He and Tim organized the meal, and they brought out a bowl of ice, a couple of liters of coke, more cups, napkins, and peppers and cheese for the pizzas.
The boys and Rick were in various stages of partial erection. They had been playing a game of tag that involved grabbing a guy's dick to make him "it," and the effects of the game showed. They were totally shameless when the got out of the pool, and I thought that was the way God intended it to be.
Sam and I ate in our lounge chairs, but Rick ate with the kids at the table.
Tim worked diligently finishing up his service and leadership project, and the final documents he produced were quite impressive. Rick and I both proofread his material for him, and we were both proud of what he had accomplished. He went through his Board of Review and Scoutmaster's Conference with flying colors, and he was ready to receive his badge.
"Well, how does it feel, buddy," Rick asked him when he got home from jumping through his final hoop.
"Pretty damn good." He grinned.
"Well, we're just as proud of you as we can be," Rick said.
"So am I," Kyle said. "Remember that old saying, `Birds of a feather fuck together.'"
Rick and I burst out laughing.
"Kyyyyyyyyle," Tim said in horror.
"What," Kyle demanded, obviously confused.
"Did you mean to say, `Birds of a feather flock together,'" I asked.
"Yeah. Didn't I say that?"
"No. You said, `Birds of a feather fuck together,'" Rick said, and laughed hysterically again.
"Jeez," Kyle said. He was a deep red. "I'm going home."
"No, you're not, asshole," Rick said. "Stay right where you are. You have to admit that's pretty funny, though, right?"
He finally laughed. "Yeah, I guess so. You guys must think I'm some kind of horn-dog or something."
"No, son," Rick said in his most serious voice. "We KNOW you are!!!! And so are we!"
Everybody laughed again. When we quieted down, Kyle got serious.
"I want to thank y'all, all three of you, for making me feel good about myself," he said. "Before I knew y'all, I was so ashamed of myself I wanted to die. I hated being gay, and I hated myself because I was gay. I didn't really have any friends, and now I've got a houseful. I love you guys. All of you."
Kyle started crying a little. Tim was sitting next to him on the floor, and he said,
"Babe, don't be sad."
"He's not sad, Tim. He's happy right now, and goddamn it, so am I," Rick said.
"Me, too," I chimed in.
"Me, too," Tim said.
Kyle recovered quickly from his tears, as he had the three or four other times I had seen him cry.
"When's the Court of Honor, Tim," Rick asked.
The scouts in my life had taught me a whole new vocabulary, and "Court of Honor" was yet another new term. I asked what that meant, and Tim explained that it was the ceremony where ranks were bestowed.
"Our troop has a separate Eagle Court of Honor, and the scout can pretty much decide when it will be. I want to wait for my dad to get home to have it. My other dad," Tim said. Then it was his turn to cry. He got up and went to Rick. Rick welcomed him into his lap and arms.
"You miss him bad, don't you, baby," Rick said.
"Yes," Tim mumbled through his tears.
"Well, maybe it won't be too long now," Rick said. He looked at me, and his look communicated the guilt, the ambivalence he felt about George returning. I knew that Rick secretly hoped George would never return, and I knew his guilt at feeling that way was eating him alive. I loved Tim, but Tim was Rick's child. In fact, Tim and Kyle were Rick's children. I knew it. He knew it. They knew it.
"Sometimes I wish he wouldn't come home," Tim said.
"Oh, Tim. Please don't say that, buddy. Don't say that," Rick sobbed. "Don't ever say that." It was my boy's turn to cry.
"I know," Tim said, and he and Rick hugged one another and cried together.
Kyle turned up his hands in a gesture that said, "I don't know what to do."
I shook my head to indicate that I didn't either. Then an idea came to me.
"Come with me," I whispered to Kyle.
I took him into the kitchen and told him to take out four large bowls. I went to the freezer in the garage and brought in three half-gallons of ice cream. We got out four bananas, a jar of red maraschino cherries and a jar of green ones, a jar of pineapple, a jar of hot fudge sauce that I heated in the microwave, a jar of marshmallow cream sauce, and a can of whipped cream. We built the four biggest ice cream confections I had ever seen and had fun doing it. We stuck some paper-thin chocolate chip cookies around the sides, and got four soup spoons to eat it with. I grabbed a handful of paper napkins and stuck them in my back pocket, and Kyle and I carried the bowls into the den.
Tim was still in Rick's lap with his head on his chest, but both of them had stopped crying. Tim's eyes got as big as saucers when he saw what we had, and Rick grinned and nodded.
We all attacked our ice cream as though we hadn't eaten in a week. There were odd comments about how good it was, but mostly we didn't talk. We had some serious eating to do.
When we had finished eating, Kyle and I lit up smokes. He no longer asked permission to smoke, and, as best I could tell, he had, maybe, three or four a day.
Rick sat up straight and started gulping air. I knew what was coming, and, sure enough, he let out an enormous belch.
After the laughter died down, Tim asked how he did that.
"I know how he did it. I can do it, too," Kyle said.
Tim watched eagerly, and then he wanted to try it. He gulped air, as he had seen Rick and Kyle do. He contorted himself to let rip a huge belch, but, when he did, his mouth filled with ice cream and the other stuff he had just eaten, and some of it ran down his face. He ran from the room to the bathroom.
Rick and Kyle apparently thought that was the funniest thing they had ever seen, and they laughed so hard that they couldn't sit up. I got up to go check on poor Tim.
"You all right, buddy," I asked, when I went into the bathroom.
He was laughing so hard he couldn't answer.
"Rinse out the sink before you leave," I said.
He said "Okay," but I could barely understand him through his laughter. He was still laughing when he came back into the den.
I spent the next half hour listening to Rick and the boys compete in a burping contest. It was a Friday night, and I assumed Rick would run the next day. I brought it to an end around 11:30, and we all went to bed.
Rick turned off his alarm clock.
"Are you not running tomorrow," I asked.
"No, I'm taking a break."
"Me, too," I said.
"You got pretty emotional with Tim back there," I said. "Do you want to talk about it?"
"Can I have some space on this one, Babe?"
"You know I want to talk to you about it, but I've got to get my head right about this first. I know I'm wrong on this one right now. Way wrong. But I just can't help it."
"Maybe I can help you get right," I said.
"Kevin, the bottom line is, I don't want George to come home. And that scares the fucking shit out of me that I would feel that way."
We were naked in bed by then, and I put my arm around him.
"I really don't feel much like it tonight, Babe. Is that okay?"
"Of course it's okay. I just want to hold you. I know you're hurting, man, and I just want to be here for you. Just relax in my arms."
"There's too fucking much love in this house, Kevin. Way too much love. And it hurts. It hurts bad."
Rick cried himself to sleep that night in my arms. I thought about what he said about there being too much love in our house.
"No, Babe," I whispered. "The love in your heart is making it burst."