"I'm really sorry..." she repeated, her voice tinged with sorrow and regret.

"Honestly, you ought to be," I rubbed it in... well, one didn't always get a chance to do that to her!

"But I'll still say you're being..."

"Let's not discuss this any further," I cut in brusquely, "I just hope that from now on you'll remember, and I won't need to remind you ever again - my telephone numbers and my address is not for distribution amongst your old, childhood friends!"

"Yes, I'll remember alright," she snickered.

I smiled with satisfaction, "OK, bye..."

"Take care, and God bless..." she replied.

Letting out a sigh I went back to my paper... blissfully unaware of what that seemingly innocuous phone call would finally result in... Oblivious of what the future held in store for me!

o o o o 0 0 0 o o o o

I slowed down as I neared my house, flipping on the indicator - no, there wasn't any traffic on that quiet, tree-lined street to warn of my impending turn - ours being a pleasant, peaceful residential block, and the only traffic one encountered was during the usual hours - mornings, afternoons and evenings - office and school time. And with my usual, odd timings, I hardly ever needed to honk or use the blinkers... yet being a stickler for rules - doing the right thing, at the right time - it was like second nature to me!

As my house came into view beyond my neighbour's high hedge I slowed even further... there was someone sitting on the steps of my front veranda!

And as I drove in closer, slowly turning the car into my drive... I saw him more clearly - a youth, (teenager?), slouched on the steps, a large suitcase and a dufflebag by his side... the long, jeans-clad legs sprawled wide... stooped over that favourite teenage toy - a cellphone - busily tapping away...

He looked up as I parked the car and cut the engine - both curious as we studied each other... Me slowly getting out and shutting the door; he slowly sitting up, staring back at me.

And as I walked up the path, he slowly, almost hesitatingly stood up, squirming slightly before stuffing his left hand into the jeans pocket and stepping down...

"Um... uh," he hesitated for a moment, the voice unsure, immature, "Jai?"

He was a gorgeous young man... probably sixteen, um, seventeen at most... Slender and tall, amazingly cute, and with eyes that were weirdly grey-green... absolutely liquid...

I tottered looking into those eyes... feeling a sudden, maddening tingle course down my spine, nodding dumbly.

"Hey," he grinned - a brilliant grin... the awesomely full lips parting to dazzle me with his pearly whites, "I'm Ranbir..." he exclaimed, offering his hand.

I stared blankly for a moment and then it all came rushing... "Uh?" I rasped, unable to tear my eyes away from those fathomless green pools, totally bewitched!

"Hi," he greeted again, the hand still extended, the eyebrows flickering just slightly.

"Uh... um, yes, hi," I finally squeaked, taking his hand... a firm and warm grip... my hand suddenly limp, "Hello Ranbir."

He smiled, "So, can we go in now?" eyebrows raised quizzically.

"Um, yes, of course," I mumbled, almost tripping over as I started for the steps.

"You okay?" I heard him ask, as I finally managed to insert the key after the third attempt, turning it to open the door.


"How long have you been waiting?" I asked as he came in after me, wheeling in the suitcase.

"Half an hour," he smiled at me, dropping the heavy dufflebag near the door.

"Oh," I exclaimed, "I'm really sorry, but I wasn't exactly expecting to find you on my doorstep like this!"

"Isn't it fun this way," he grinned, looking around the livingroom and then back at me, his amazing liquid eyes staring into me, "finding something you wasn't really expecting, huh?"

"So, your parent's didn't come?" I enquired as I led him to the couch, asking him to sit down.

"Well, I'm supposed to report to college next Monday, and our trip was planned that way..." he shrugged, "but then, I've heard so much about..." he paused looking at me, "your city, I wanted to check it out before I got stuck at the campus. Besides, it no fun experiencing something new with guys who themselves don't know much about it, and I thought that if I came early, you'd help me explore..." he paused, giving that dazzling smile of his, the eyes twinkling, "the city... and help me discover..." he paused once more, leaving the sentence unfinished, before adding, "So, I took the noon flight and got here around 1:20, and then another about thirty minutes for baggage clearance and the forty-five minutes ride to your place!"

I nodded... once more feeling that weird tingle course down my spine... those eyes... well, they knew magic... they could strip the soul bare with just a glance and he was doing all sorts of funny things to me...

"Well, yesterday," he was saying, "after I booked the ticket, mom kept trying your number, but no one answered the phone!"

"Ah, yes," I nodded, "I was, I mean, we were away for the entire weekend... like, I went to drop my son at his college. They begin tomorrow, and I got back real late and this morning I left early since I had a breakfast meeting with a client..."

"Oh," he exclaimed, "I don't get to meet Sashank, huh?"

"Well, not this time..." I smiled.

He raised his eyebrows high, nodding, "And that means it's just the two of us, for a whole week, wow! And what about your cell, you never answer it?"

"Um," I gave a sheepish smile of embarrassment, "I don't usually answer numbers that I don't recognise..."

"Oh, well, that's fine, I didn't mind sitting out there, and waiting for you," he smiled, adding "it was fun... finally meeting you! But you better enter my number, for I'll be calling you often."


"Well," I suggested, "I think you should freshen up, and then would you like something to eat... or maybe a glass of milk?"

"MILK?!" he nearly screamed, screwing up his face.

"Okay, maybe coffee..." I ventured.

"Nah, thanks," he smiled, "I had a very heavy lunch before I left home, and then had a calzone at the airport here, and now I really don't need anything."

"Okay," I nodded, standing up, "come, let me show you the room, and then you can take a shower or whatever..."

"Uh," he let out a groan, still sitting, "I'll need to unpack first..." probably not entirely thrilled by the idea.

"Well, you don't need to unpack..." I began, but couldn't finish as he howled out loud, "What, you want me naked around the house, huh?!"

I goved... totally taken aback, before finally getting my voice back and stuttering, "Um, uh... that... that's not what I... I meant..." I mumbled, my face going red, "like, there's always fresh towel, soap and stuff in the guest bathroom and... and you won't need to take your stuff out while you're he... here..."

"Oh..." he let out another giggle, grinning up at me, "so you want me to just take my clothes out, huh, not go around bare-assed!"

My ears throbbed hotly, but I didn't bother to answer as I walked away, headed for the staircase... this kid would be my undoing... and I suddenly dreaded being left alone with him for a whole week...

o o o o 0 0 0 o o o o

I think this is the perfect place to rewind back to where this narration began... to that phone call from my sister...

It was that time of the year - at summer's end - when the latest batch of freshly graduated teens, after months of making parents wonder why holidays were ever invented, finally began preparing for their further journey down life's highway - choosing, finalising and then gradually departing for their respective colleges... On such a simmering Sunday morning, six weeks ago, as I got my coffee and was about to settle down with the day's paper, that the phone rang - it was my sis. And after the usual greetings and salutations she asked if I remembered her friend, Aruna... "Yes, of course!" I answered.

"Well, she called yesterday evening," my sister informed me, "her brother, Bunty's son has got into BITS and they wanted to talk to you..."

"What about?" I interjected.

"Jai, the kid's got into BITS, and it's in your city, they probably want to know about the faculty, facilities, the campus and stuff..."

"And I hope," I intervened once more, "you didn't go ahead and give them my number, huh?"

"JAI!" she exclaimed in shock. "What's wrong with you? Of course I did, and," she added with a great deal of emphasis, "I also mentioned that you would be extremely happy to help out."

I let out an unconcealed groan of disapproval.

"Jai, you really are getting obnoxious with age..."


"No, really," she continued, "that's not only rude, it's totally inexcusable! What's the matter with you, huh? All they want is some details, and information, which you can easily..."

"They can get it on the internet..." I retorted even before she could finish.

"If the internet did everything, then what are friends for?"

"Friends? I'm not exactly their 'friend'..."

"I do wonder at time," she answered with that special tone of hers that she always used to put me in my proper place. Well, she wasn't just my sister, she was exactly six years older, and had always bossed over me, "did the babies get changed at the hospital..."

"Very funny," I laughed, "but seriously, did you really give her my number?"




"My dearest sister darling," I sang, patronising, "you know I absolutely don't enjoy entertaining strangers..."

"Aruna is no stranger," pat came her reply, "and neither is Bunty. Besides, they aren't going to land up at your place, and even if they did, what's wrong with it?!"

"Well, not strangers maybe, but neither of them were exactly my friends, huh!"

"You've been to their house a thousand times, and they have visited us as often. You've been to parties and movies with Bunty..."

"Well, that was ages ago, we were kids and in more than twenty years we have had absolutely no contact..."

"Well, now is the chance, renew old bonds..."

"Some bond, huh!"

"You are being utterly unreasonable, and completely selfish!"

"Fine, that's me," I replied, not too civil.

"You do surprise me..." she said, somewhat subdued.

"Oh, sure..." I cut in with a derisive laugh, "When these ancient, childhood 'friends' suddenly decide to pop out of the mist of the past, it usually is more than just to enquire about your welfare... or just for simple information that's easily available on the net!"

"What will they do?" she snapped, her tone outraged, "Raid your home, camp there?"

"Well, you can tell them that I won't allow any such privilege..." I replied in a smug tone.

"Shame on you..." she cried, "and what's wrong if the kid does visit you on weekends, poor guy, he'll be so far away from home, and if you do let him stay, spend some time with you, what's wrong with that, huh? Besides, you too will be alone with Sashank going away to college, and having Ranbir could actually feel nice..."

"Spare me all that mush," I interrupted curtly.

"You are becoming absolutely impossible," she sighed, and after a pause added, "You should have remarried then, a woman in your life would have done wonders!"

I let out another of my derisive laughs, "Well, whatever, from now on remember that I don't exactly approve of your distributing my telephone numbers and my address to all and sundry, including, your childhood or school friends..."

"Well, I'm sorry," she finally sighed, "and disappointed..."

"Keep it to the extent of just being sorry," I grinned, sensing victory, "as for the 'being disappointed', that I'll keep..."

"I'm really sorry..." she repeated, her voice tinged with sorrow and regret.

"Honestly, you ought to be," I rubbed it in... well, one didn't always get a chance to do that to her!

... And that was where this tale had begun...

Aruna called the next day, and Bunty's wife - about whose existence I hadn't the foggiest idea - called too. She sounded happy and was very friendly, telling me how much she had heard about me, from Aruna and Bunty. They wanted to know if the branch in my city was as renowned as the parent institute at Pilani... and how far the campus was from the city... the accommodation... etc... etc. Her son Ranbir, she informed me, had done extremely well, and had got a call for counselling... they would be visiting my town the next week for that... just a day or two... and then, if the kid got what he wanted, he'd join BITS and...

I nodded and made all the right noises... assuring her that I'd get the information... and call her back.

I did... and they were very grateful. "The counselling date is for next week," she informed me, "and we'll be sure to call you and maybe, if you can manage it, we could meet up for dinner..." she added, "Bunty keeps talking about you, about when you-all were about Ranbir's age..."

"Well," I replied, concealing the glee in my voice, "I'm sorry, but next week I'm away... a client meeting at Bangalore..." and then for some odd reason added, "but my son will be home, you could drop in, meet him..."

"Oh," she exclaimed in disappointment, "sure, will call him, and if possible will drop in at your place."

They came on schedule, (I was away on business as already mentioned), and the kid got his desired course at the college... They called and spoke to my son... but couldn't visit as the trip was for a short one day, and that was it...

In the meantime, I too got busy with Sashank's, my kid's, admission... He had got into a premier science institute at Pune, and we in turn went for his counselling. He too got the major of his choice... and then it was getting back home and preparing for his going away... and the weeks soon flew... Bunty, his wife, and their darling kid all but forgotten... till I got back home that Monday afternoon and found him sitting on my doorstep!

o o o o 0 0 0 o o o o

"You're in here?" I heard him ask as I rummaged through the kitchen cabinets, checking the fridge and the larder, making sure I had all the essentials... not running short of anything, especially now that my son was away.

Turning around I let out a tiny gasp as I gawped at the boy... Ranbir stood near the kitchen door... fresh from the shower... a cotton singlet, and a pair of tiny shorts!

Slim and lithe, the kid was truly gorgeous... delicately toned like only a teen can be... shimmering and sensuous...

"Preparing for dinner?" he asked walking in.

"Um, ah... yes..." I nodded, tearing my eyes away.

"So, what do you plan to feed me tonight, huh?" he asked, sitting down at the kitchen table, the eyes fixed on me.

"Whatever you wan..." I croaked, before pausing and clearing my throat, quickly rephrasing, "What do you want?"

"Will you give me what I want?" he asked in turn, my heart suddenly slamming.

"If it's not too fanciful, and if I have the ingredients at home, maybe I could manage," I replied, closing the cabinet door and forcing a smile, "Or else, we could go out for dinner..."

"Nah," he shook his head, "I'd love to try you out instead!"

I steadied myself, clearing my voice once more, "Um, you still didn't answer my question, what would you like?"

He grinned broadly, the eyes once more sparkling, "Anything you want to feed me, I'm game!"

"How does alu paratha and boti kabab sound?" I asked, forcing a smile as I repeatedly told myself to calm down, "I know, it isn't exactly an exciting combination!"

"Well, we could make it..." he smiled, "exciting!"

I turned away, once more feeling that odd tingle... totally shamed.

The menu decided, I quickly got down to the preparation - getting the marinade ready, and putting the potatoes on boil... chopping and grinding. He remained there, sitting and watching me work... talking incessantly... small questions... little anecdotes from back home - about school and friends... laughing... commenting on the 'lovely' aroma... somehow making me fumble around nervously as I sneaked stealthy glances... quickly turning away each time he looked up.

I didn't know what, but the kid was driving me crazy, making me ridiculously libidinous... shamelessly stare at him, with total disregard for all propriety... Watch those full lips move in that sensuous way as he spoke or smiled... those dark, silky strands peeking out from under his arms... Observing those subtle teen muscles flex under the smooth skin with every movement he made... My eyes caressing that smooth, slim adolescent figure... wander along those slender, bare legs... repeatedly settling at the centre, unable to tear them away... devouring him!

And he caught me staring, our eyes meeting over a dozen times as I quickly, shamefacedly looked away, but not before seeing the mirthful twinkle in those fathomless pools...

It was so unnerving...


"So, you work from home?" he asked looking up as we sat on the back veranda having our dinner of kababs, parathas, achaar and raita.

"Yes..." I nodded, avoiding his eyes.

"That must be cool..."

"Well, depends on how you look at it - it has its plus points and it also can get very distracting at times..."

"And how come you do the cooking?"

"Sashank is an extremely fussy eater, and very demanding," I answered, staring vacantly across the dark back yard, "so finally, we served the cook her notice and I started learning - nothing ostentatious or extravagant - just eating simple, but healthy."

"And you've done a brilliant job of that learning!" he smiled, an honest smile.

"Thank you..."

"Honest, you do cook pretty good..."

I smiled, looking back into those amazing green, fathomless pools.

"You don't drink?" he suddenly asked.


"I asked, don't you drink?"

"Um, occasionally, beer or wine, when with friends," I replied, and then shrugged, "Rarely..."

"So, don't you feel like it now," he asked looking up at me, into my eyes, "It's lovely out here..." he paused, "and I'm there..."

I shook my head, looking away, unable to engage those eyes for long.

"Well, dad needs his scotch and soda every evening," he confided.

I remained silent...

"So, you know my father?"

I nodded, "Knew him..."

"And how long back was that?" he asked.

"Before we move out..." I replied.

"When did you move out?" he asked again, between mouthfuls.

"Um, twenty-four years back..." I answered.

"Wow, that was a long while back," he grinned. "Never visited Mumbai after that?"

"About, maybe, six times in the past ten or twelve years," I replied.

"Then how come I never met you," he persisted, "you never visit your old friends?"

"I don't have much work there, and my visits are usually for a day or so..."

He nodded sagely, "And you never called him either?"

I wanted to say that neither had his father or his aunt ever bothered to call me... not until they thought they needed my help because he would be studying in my town... but I kept my peace... shaking my head instead.

"Did you meet my mother?"

I shook my head.

"How old were you," he asked looking at me, into my eyes, "when you moved out?"


"And my dad was?"

"The same..."

"Yup, he mentioned," he smiled that same dazzling smile, the eyes twinkling, "but you don't look forty-two, you look a lot younger!"

I stared back... unable to tear my eyes away...

"And, you still behave like you're eighteen," he added after a pause, giggling, the eyes shining with a puckish glint.


The first sip of the dark liquid was invigorating after the fitful slumber of the previous night, and as I put down the mug and picked up the morning paper, I heard a sleepy "Good-morning", and looking up nearly gasped aloud as Ranbir entered the kitchen and I took him in with a sweeping glance - sleepy eyed, hair dishevelled, and clad just in his boxers... the thin, almost transparent cotton obscenely tented...

He looked so incredibly cute... devilishly enticing!

Gulping, I felt my eyes move lower once more... settling on that boxer front...

"Good-morning..." he repeated, walking in, the cotton moving with the swaying of the concealed tumescence.

"Um, uh..." I nodded, finally looking up at him, seeing that mischievous glint in those green eyes, "Go... good-morning..."

He smiled at me, and then looking down at himself, let out a small laugh, "What do you do with a morning woody..." he asked, pressing down with his right hand, the palm subtly, unabashedly rubbing along the length.

"Splash some cold water on your face..." I suggested, my voice barely audible, the newspaper rustling in my trembling hands.

"You too get one, huh?" he asked, looking into my eyes, sitting down across me, leaning back... the legs spread wide, the pelvis thrust out... the hand still between the thighs, rubbing.

I quickly looked away... God, how'd I handle him for a whole week!

"Want milk..." I began to ask before stopping as I remembered his reaction the previous afternoon, "or maybe coffee?"

He grinned widely, looking right into my eyes, and then after a long while replied, "Nah, I don't take coffee... or tea."

"And what would you like for breakfast?"

"You won't probably approve of what I want, so let's not bother with that..." he replied, sitting up, his hips going a slight jiggle as he finally pulled his hand away, "What do you normally have?"

"I take oats, and Sashank has bread... with eggs, or cheese... and milk."

He grinned, "I'll manage with the bread and eggs!"

I nodded, reaching for my coffee.


Though the monsoon had been delayed that year - the sun remaining blistering, and the heat unbearably scorching - the morning had dawned with a welcome cloud cover, and there was even a pleasant breeze blowing... maybe a portent of the approaching rains. And since I didn't have any meetings scheduled over the next three days, nor any deadlines to meet, after breakfast I suggested that he take a shower and we go out - 'explore' the city. He squealed excitedly as he ran up the stairs...

"And where are you taking me?" he asked as he got into the car.

"You mentioned that you heard a lot about the city and was keen to explore, any suggestion?" I questioned as I started the engine.

"Um, I heard, yes," he answered, his eyes dancing over my face, "but this is your city, and now I'm in your hands, so, you decide what to do with me, and I'll be happy to go along..."

"Fine," I replied pulling out of the drive, "it's a cloudy day, so why don't we visit the Golconda fort first, and then, after lunch I can take you to see the Charminar. And tomorrow we can do the museums, if that interests you..."

"That sounds cool," he responded.

"Or, I could take you around on a tour of the malls and multiplexes, if that interests you more..." I sniggered as we drove down our empty lane.

"Ew..." he screwed up his face, "malls are the same every place, I'll take what you have planned!" he smiled.

I nodded...

Parking the car we got down and he let out a long-drawn 'w o w' looking up in awe at the massive ramparts and the monumental gateway... hurrying up the path as I got the entrance tickets. "You go along," I suggested as we entered the fort, "just follow the steps, and the crowd, and you won't get lost."

"Won't you be coming?" he looked at me, startled.

"I've been up there a thousand times," I shook my head, "and now it leaves me breathless..."

"So do you," he grinned, "leave me breathless. Now, stop acting old and tell me all the dark and sinister secrets of the fort..." he said, grabbing my hand and tugging me along the steep steps of the fort.

He was terribly excited... breathless, as he admired the feats of medieval architects and engineers. Exuberant as he ran up ahead, pausing to turn back and look at me, shrugging before running back down, shaking his head with disapproval, tugging me along. And he chattered away - nonstop - a question at every turn, a query about everything... amusingly witty observations... and scathingly snide remarks, about fellow tourists, as he leaned close whispering into my ears - a typical teenager... youthful and vivacious, almost childlike!

We were finally at the highest point of elevation, standing on the roof of the royal inner court and looking out at the sprawling city in the distance... "Lovely view..." he said, standing by my side.

"Yes," I nodded...

"But where are the palaces... I mean the living quarters of the king and his queens?" he suddenly asked turning to me.

"You'll see it when we go down," I answered, looking back at him.

"We take a different path?"

"Yup," I replied, leading him.

We walked down the steep steps, descending to the palace complex... winding our way around the massive pillars and ruined walls - mute testimony to a grandeur that still managed to leave the onlooker amazed.

"Isn't this wonderful..." he mused aloud, standing in the spacious courtyard near the central fountain, looking around him, "So, this is where the queens and concubines lived, huh?"

I nodded.

"Such lavish lifestyle," he observed, "such extravagance!" and then after a long pause looked at me, into my eyes, "These kings, knights, sultans and maharajas also maintained harem full of teen boys... young male concubines... wasn't it? Or should I say, catamites, huh?"

'Oh, God...' I groaned silently, quickly looking away. But he walked around, looking into my face, those eyes sparkling in the late morning sun... now an amazing shade of green, the greyness not perceptible. "Doesn't it make you wonder?" he asked, those full lips purse in a smile.

"I... I..." I stuttered, "I'm really not aware..." I trailed off.

"What!" he exclaimed in utter amazement, "You haven't read about Ganymede or Bagoas... Hadrian's Antinous, or King James' various lovers - George Gordon, Francis Hepburn, young Robert Carr, his 'Gentleman of the Bedchamber', huh?" he giggled, his eyes dancing over my face.

"Let's go," I said, quickly turning away and heading for the arched gateway that would lead us back to the path for the final descent.

"Well, I always found it very intriguing... and exciting!" he giggled walking by my side, adding, "Jai, if you were a maharaja, would you also have your own harem of young boys?"

I walked on, my pulse suddenly racing... my mind racing too...

"You didn't answer?" he persisted, touching my arm.

I stopped, the blood audibly pumping in my ears, "I'm not a maharaja, or even a raja," I said, trying desperately to keep my voice calm, "so I can't hypothecate!"

Throwing back his head he let out a laugh, the eyes two shining points of brilliant stars, "Okay, but would you take one now?"

"Ranbir, you shouldn't be talking to me like that!" I exclaimed in shock, quickening my steps.

"Why?" he asked innocently, running after me, our bodies touching on the narrow path, sending a shiver down my spine.

I didn't bother to answer his 'why' as I hurried past the sprawling gardens and the extravagant pavilion... past the newly commissioned site museum and the armoury... heading straight for the exit. Ranbir was back at his games, and I silently prayed for strength... for fortitude...

"Achilles and Patroclos, Alexander and Hephaestion, David and Jonathan..." he rattled, keeping pace, "Isn't it all so fascinating, huh?!"

And as I finally managed to get into the car, he too climbed in, asking, "Is something wrong?" his eyes searching my face.

I remained silent, avoiding looking at him... suddenly scared of those eyes, that pair of magical eyes which had so fascinated me... had ensorcelled me... My hands shaking as I tried to insert the key, fumbling for a while before I succeeded.

"Now where?" he asked, fastening the seat belt.


"And then?"

"Charminar," I answered, monosyllabic.


"Can I have a beer?" he asked as we sat out on the back veranda, eating our dinner.

While driving back home, after hours spent wandering along the network of narrow alleys and lanes around the Charminar, I had asked if he'd like to go out for dinner that night. But he was firm as he shook his head, "Nah, I want you..." he said, pausing for a moment before finally adding, "I want you to cook." And after the shower, had sat in the kitchen in his shorts... watching me cook, curiously silent.

"No, I don't think so..." I answered.

"Okay, wine then?"

"No..." I was more firm this time.

"And why not?" he asked, suddenly belligerent.

"Because you're a kid..." I replied.

"I'm not a kid," he retorted, "I'm eighteen, and an adult!"

"It doesn't really matter..." I replied, almost dismissive.

"It does," he shot back, his voice combative, "I can now legally drive, drink and even have consensual sex! If you guys can do it, why can't I?" he questioned, the eyes blazing.

I remained silent... feeling a chill deep in my marrow.

"I'll never really understand your weird grown-up hassles about everything," he said, the voice choked with confused frustration, the eyes dark, "Why this double standard, huh?"

"Now, just eat your dinner and go to bed..." I replied, my voice shaky... not ready for battle, having had enough of that with my own son over the past two years.

"No, you have to answer me," he challenged, "I've had beer with my friends..."

"That hardly changes anything," I cut him short, "if you want beer or wine, go out with your friends and have it. I'm not offering you any alcohol!"

His eyes flashed for a moment, but he didn't reply, just letting out a militant grunt of the defeated, sulky... and then fell silent, remaining quiet... and when he offered to help me clear the table that night, I allowed him.

"I really don't understand you..." he suddenly said as I switched off the kitchen light, the tone weirdly tense.

I stared at him, wondering briefly... wanting to say 'Don't even try'... but wishing him a curt 'good-night' instead, retiring to my room.


Wednesday we visited the museums - Ranbir silently going around the vast collections, spending an inordinate amount of time poring over the miniatures and manuscripts... showing great interest in the numerous occidental sculptures - statues, busts and nudes - shaking his head as he looked at me through the corner of his eyes... the full lips curled in a slight smile.

"Have you been to Khajuraho?" he asked as we walked out to the car.

I shook my head.


"No," I replied, curt. I had been to both places - on more than one occasion - but knowing where his questions could ultimately lead, and dreading them, I chose on keeping quiet... deciding that denial of my visits was a better option, than trying to parry his obnoxious queries.

"And where now?" he asked.

"It's already late," I replied starting the car, "we'll have lunch first, and then visit the other museum."

"Okay," he nodded, snapping the seatbelt.


"Aren't you hot?" he enquired entering the den clad in his boxers, walking in and sitting down on the couch opposite me, "or is it just me, huh?"

"Yes, it is," I replied, quickly looking down at the book I was reading, "the rains have been delayed this year..."

"Then how do you manage to keep those clothes on?" he questioned, his eyes fixed on my face.

Apprehending another outrageously salacious session I quickly shut the book and got up, "I guess I need to start preparing for dinner," I announced looking at the clock on the mantelpiece, "and if you are hot, take another shower." I walked out.

My den was my private domain, that little personal space where I retired to relax and reflect, unwind and collect my thoughts... work out my frustrations and my anger... and even my son wasn't allowed to disturb me when I was there. And that Wednesday evening there was a lot that I needed to work out of me... Lunch, and the drive back home, had been a terrifying ordeal. Ranbir had been appalling... those eyes sparkling fiendishly as he engaged me - about sculptures and Greek sports - the Kritious Boy, the Anticythera youth... The Boy, salvaged off the Marathon coast... Michelangelo's David... Cellini's Perseus... "And why did they need to use fig-leaves to cover up these great pieces of art, huh?!" he questioned, leaning over... "And did you know that the Olympics were open to only men, because participants had to compete in the nude!" On and on he went... making me cringe... making me want to slap him into silence... But then, I never slapped my own boy, and how could I do that to him?!

Why did he seem so intimidating whenever we were alone... always succeeding in unnerving me? For God's sake, he was just a kid, an eighteen year old kid... the same age as my own son! Then why? Was he just a saucy little teen, trying to act all grown up and smart - dreadfully blatant with his obscenely outrageous behaviour and raunchy retorts? Or was he just horny and dumb, making an utter fool of himself? Or, maybe, I was attempting to read too much into his harmlessly immature behaviour, and silly rejoinders, in a desperate endeavour at justifying my own inexplicable, almost adolescent, arousal?

But what happened next left me totally stupefied... with my heart pounding massively... and my pulse racing... My cock fiercely rigid and throbbing!

I had escaped to the kitchen from my private lair in the hope that the preparation and cooking would keep my mind off him... help me somehow to control that constant, persistent, aching, sickening desire that filled my soul... threatening to drive me wild... drive me into doing something that I shouldn't be even thinking of... Keep him away from me... And there I remained, chopping and blending, stirring and frying... when he entered, fresh from the shower... glowing... with just a towel wrapped around his middle!

I let out a silent groan, feeling my hands begin to shake... my knees weak.

"What's for dinner?" he asked cheerfully, walking in.

Not bothering to answer his question I cleared my throat, "Ranbir, get back to your room and put on your clothes."

"It's hot," he complained.

"Switch on the airconditioner and stay in your room then..." I suggested, my voice low, ragged.

"But I want to be with you..." he pouted.

"Then put on your clothes!"

"Why, seeing me like this bothers you, huh?" he shot, the eyes staring back.

I didn't reply as I tried to steady myself, picking up a pan.

"Seeing me like this bothers you?" he persisted, walking in further.

I glared at him, my whole body shuddering with naked desire... and impotent rage, "Just get back to your room," I snapped, my teeth gritted, "and stay there. I'll call you when dinner is ready."

He paused midstride... then spun around, pivoting on his toes, turning away - a smooth, fluid motion... and the towel dropped... exposing him entirely!

Everything seemed to go still as I stood rooted, stunned... my jaws dropping as I stared on at those incredibly awesome callipygous mounds... transfixed.

He too remained still... the towel a soft pile around his feet... maybe frozen with embarrassment, I thought, but no, that brazen bucko was anything but shamed, and I soon found out as he turned around... displaying his sprouting teen charm in shameless arrogance, his eyes looking directly at me, incisive... The whole damned scene unfolding as if in slow motion...

It was electric in that kitchen room... and then the spell was broken as the pan clattered out of my benumbed fingers, jerking me out of my stupor...

He smiled... slowly stooping as he reached down, scooping up the towel... and then walked out... leaving me staggering, as sweat dripped out of every pore... thoroughly shaken as I gradually became aware of the painfully rigid heat in my briefs!

I wanted to avoid him at all cost... but there was no hope of that... and once dinner was ready I slowly walked up the stairs on leaden feet... knocking on his door, telling him to come down for dinner... and reluctantly sat across from him, eating silently.

Luckily, he remained very quiet... nothing spunky or sassy. Maybe regretting his earlier bawdy act... maybe finally in control of his own self... and soon we cleared the table and retired... me heaving a sigh of relief.

But my ordeal, nor my trial, was over yet... And I'd soon find out...


I lay curled up in bed, trying to concentrate on the book before me in a desperate attempt at lulling my fevered mind. The previous two nights had been agonisingly torturous as I had lain awake, tossing and turning, sleep refusing to grace my eyes. My body weirdly tensed, my mind in turmoil, unable to relax as my thoughts remained centred on that boy - the things he had said... or atleast, seemed to have said... That slender, long limbed frame... so smooth... those full lips... And particularly, those amazing, magical eyes... large, long-lashed... fathomless... That tented boxer... Continuously tempted to go to his room, on the pretext of checking if he was comfortable... was sleeping well...

And the incident of that evening - that dropped towel... and I was sure that it was on purpose, not an accident... and it had left me reeling... I just couldn't get my mind off those firm twin globes... so full... taut and unblemished... I could take it no more... I wanted to sleep... sleep and forget everything... get that boy out of my mind... Afraid that otherwise I'd do something so utterly despicable, that I'd regret it for the rest of my life...

And as I lay, tormented, I heard the gentle knock...

"Yes?" I stirred, swinging my feet off the bed and slowly sitting up.

The door parted and Ranbir entered, making me let out a strangled gasp as my jaw hit the floor... scarcely believing my eyes, my heart freezing as it missed a beat... Ranbir smiled, standing there just inside the threshold of my bedroom... stark naked, and sporting a huge, rigid hardon!

He looked amazingly beautiful... even more stunning in the nude... tall and slender... a perfect alabaster statue, glowing in that subdued light of my bedside lamp... but a statue that was alive and breathing, engorged with arousal... the rigid shaft pointing straight up... the foreskin entirely retracted, trapped by the flared rim of the bloated crown... ruddy with passion... flexing and throbbing shamelessly. Absolutely ravishing!

"Wha.. wha... what are you doing?" I croaked.

"Taking things to its logical conclusion," he answered, the lips trembling with an uncertain smile... the eyes sultry grey, tinged with a curious uncertainty for the first time, no longer sparkling with that cocky sureness, "since you seem reluctant, or unwilling, to make the first move!"

"Ge... get ba... back to your room... and pu... put on your clothes..." I stuttered out hoarsely.

"But I want to sleep with you!" he announced, walking right in, the eyes searching my face.

"I... um... yo... you..." I cried, my head reeling.

"Yes, both of us," he whispered.

"I... ah, I didn't mean that..." I mumbled, suddenly getting back my senses for a fleeting few seconds, "God, get back to your room and put on your clothes..." I finally managed.

"You want me," he stated, his eyes seeking mine, "then why this reluctance?"

I groaned, shivering all over, sweating buckets full... my mouth bone-dry, the heart slamming away... My eyes hungrily devouring his nakedness... repeatedly returning between those well-formed thighs... unable to pull away, or look up into his face. "I... um, ah... you..." I struggled, but nothing else came out of my parched throat.

"I'm young, I'm handsome, and smell of the sea..." I heard him say, suddenly twirling around on his toes before walking closer, the large, rigid teen phallus swaying from side to side... the low hanging balls swinging free. "Don't you want me?" he asked.

"You... you're..." I blabbered.

"I'm sweet and sexy?"

"You're... you're..." I attempted once more.


"You... you're a ki... kid!" I cried out, my voice, a piercing screech... finally looking up at him.

"I'm not a kid," he replied with an extraordinary firmness, standing right in front of me... the swaying phallus practically in my face, "I'm eighteen, and an adult!" he announced.

"I... I could get into trouble..." I blurted out, unthinking.

"Don't worry, I won't tell anyone," he assured, those eyes sparkling once more, as with a brisk, fluid motion he swung his feet up on my bed, on either side of me, and plopped down on my lap!

"Please..." I made one last, feeble plea as his mouth covered mine... nearly taking my breath away... and there was nothing more that I could do to stop it!

There is just so much that a man can take, and no more... and finally, with an agonised moan I surrendered... my hands, almost unconsciously, wrapping around his slender frame, pulling him closer, my lips responding, kissing back... both of us breathless, both gasping...

His lips were soft and pliant... the powerful teen arms tight around me... and those incredible buttocks, which I had admired that very evening, now warm on my lap, rotating sensuously over my fast hardening manhood... so deliciously wicked!

I shamelessly groped and caressed... clutching him tighter - as much in desire, as in desperation... my soul fired by a raging, ravenous hunger... my senses consumed by the intoxicating flames of lust... finally unleashing the years of pent up passion... wanting to love again... wanting to indulge... both moaning as we tumbled back, the boy straddling me... those pliant mounds unrelenting as they smothered my throbbing hardness... titillating the madly flexing shaft.

He pulled back, breathless... tugging at the buttons of my pajama top... tearing a couple as he ripped it off me, burying his face in my heaving chest... kissing and nibbling as he worked his way down... the fingers already hooking in the waist band, sliding the pajamas off... baring me to his curious gaze... groaning with lust as my cock sprang free...

He was rough and clumsy... awkward in his loving... hurried, almost desperate in his effort to do the right thing, in the right way... desperate to please... But what he lacked in skill, he more than made up with his unbridled enthusiasm... kissing and nibbling... caressing and fondling... moving back and forth... going down and then moving up... before finally settling between my spread thighs... grabbing me with both hands... totally fascinated... pulling back the foreskin and then drawing it right up... stroking the shaft... licking and kissing as we both gasped and groaned... wrapping those full lips around the tingling glans and lunging down... gagging and spluttering, before withdrawing, and then making another valiant effort at taking me in...

He sucked, and he stroked... a frenzied team of tongue, mouth and fingers... frantic. And I just lay moaning... eyes closed... long defeated.

"Take me..." he whispered in a husky voice, crawling over me, his eyes dark and smouldering as he looked down at me.

I stared back, my heart thumping away... in the grip of a maddening lust... almost crying in anticipation.

Sex is like swimming - you never really forget once you've got the hang of it... going through the motions almost automatically... and I didn't need the kid to lead me anymore, or guide me... nor needed any instructions in the art of making love... I was the master of my bed and I knew what to do... and how to go about it... Grabbing his slim waist, I lifted him and rolled over in one swift motion... mounting him as his legs spread wide in invitation... his fingers seeking me out, leading me to him...

I sensed the moist slickness, feeling myself glide along the deep trench... quickly realising that he had come prepared... And then he had me at the portal, holding me steady... urging me on... and I heaved, my hips rocking... cajoling the tight opening... He groaned, and suddenly I was sinking in... feeling that welcome heat engulf me... suck me in...

I too groaned at that familiar moist warmth... that long forgotten pulsating clutch... meekly yielding to the screaming demands of my heart... wrapping my arms tightly around the slim frame as I fed him the last remaining inches...

The boy was full of lusty moans and hoarse whimpers as he writhed under me, the dark lashes moist with the unshed tears... urging me to go faster... harder... The lithe form, so smooth and supple, undulating as we settled to a joyous rhythm... our limbs intertwined, our saliva smeared mouth glued in a ravenous kiss... fucking... fucking away... Just that mind-numbing clutch of the pulsating sleeve... that full-length plunge into the seething, churning cauldron of boy flesh was what mattered... driving me on... driving me wild!

"Do me from behind..." he cried tearing his mouth away, breaking the kiss. And I didn't need a second invitation... Wrenching out my cock, I quickly rolled him over and grabbing his waist, pulled him up... lunging in... as he threw his head back and cried out... slamming back at me.

It was torrid... it was mindboggling... carrying us both to the heights of unimaginable ecstasy... till nothing but a mindless, swirling void remained... leaving us both benumbed... but amazingly elated!

I pulled out, and he quickly rolled over, clutching me, "Thank you..." he purred, covering my face with numerous wet, sloppy kisses, his drenched, sticky body pressed against me as we lay panting, catching our breath.

But that wasn't the end of our night... and his hands were already between my thighs, caressing... stroking... "Hope it doesn't hurt as much the next time..." he said in a soft, barely audible voice, nuzzling close... pulling me over him...


Ranbir was insatiable, and I was famished... untiring as we repeatedly united in our exquisite game of love... and it was nearly dawn before we finally fell apart, exhausted - his belly bloated full with my seed... and my balls utterly depleted!

Ranbir snuggled close, his cum splattered torso pressed tight against me, a thigh thrown languidly across my middle... his slimy, but sated teen cock squashed against my hip... and he finally slept, his head cradled in the crook of my arm... finally calm, and happy.

But I lay awake, thinking...

The import of what had just transpired... what I had just done... slowly sinking in. I had not only succumbed to the temptation that I had kept in check for an eternity... but I had just fucked a young teen... the son of my old, childhood friend... a kid the same age as my own son... I shuddered!

o o o o 0 0 0 o o o o

I had become aware of my attraction for the male when I was sixteen... fascinated, totally mesmerised by that perfectly amazing male form... knowing, and acknowledging the meaning of my attraction... But I also liked girls... and more importantly, always wanted my own kids, maybe a dozen of them... dreaming of having my own family... I knew that a male companion could never give me that, and so, consciously, I chose to be, and remain, a straight... marry and have a family... have kids... relegating my desire for men to just an occasional curious and cursory glance...

I met Sashank's mother at a friend's party - his younger sister's best pal. We instantly fell in love, and eight months later, were married. Two years later Sashank was born... and almost immediately I perceived a slight change in her... a certain inexplicable withdrawal... a slow drifting apart... Three years later she asked me for a divorce... leaving me stunned!

There were no accusations, or recriminations... nor any acrimony. We went to a lawyer, together, and signed the papers. She moved out and I was left with my three year old toddler... and, without a hope of having my remaining eleven kids...

A year later the divorce was granted... and I was single again... an utterly confused single... with a small kid. Six months later she remarried... and moved on... and we never met, or spoke, ever again.

I still liked women... still thought of them, but once bitten, twice shy, and though there was a lot of pressure from friends and family to get married, I remained stubbornly reluctant... still reeling, still trying to come to grips with what had happened... and yes, wondering... grappling to find answers... seek explanations...

After trying for a year and a half I gave up my regular job and began working from home... spending every available hour with my kid... desperately trying to give him the home that had been snatched away from him... And as the years passed... and my parents too passed away... the constant pressure to remarry slowly ebbed.

My thoughts once more returned to men... gradually warming up to the idea... even attempting a few perfunctory peeks into the parallel, and thriving, gay world... braving a few tentative forays... but quickly pulling back from those aimless meanderings by what I saw. And there I remained, blissful in my little, secure world, insulated from want or desire... till Ranbir barged in and tore to shreds my neatly woven cocoon... tearing away all semblance of sanity and plunging me into the fiery pit of passion.

o o o o 0 0 0 o o o o

I don't remember when I dozed off in my solitary jaunt down memory lane... but suddenly I was awake... staring up at the ceiling above... it was morning and the sun was out... Ranbir still slept by my side... his body still pressed against me, his thigh still over my middle... his face resting against my arm.

I slowly turned my head and looked at him... Oh, how numinously chatoyant he seemed in that subdued glow of the morning light filtering in through the drapes... so peaceful... so utterly happy. I slowly turned on my side, facing him and reached out... brushing my fingers through his mane... gently caressing his face... He looked so beautiful... so amazingly handsome... a puer teneris... delicately perched on the threshold of tener virilis... a small child in a rush to grow up into a man...

He stirred, letting out a soft moan and then flitted his eyes open, looking at me, smiling...

"You have beautiful eyes," I whispered, lazily tracing his arched brows with my finger.

He gave a coy smile and blushed, for the first time... the eyes for once soft. "That's what got you, isn't?" he whispered back, snuggling closer.

"Yes," I nodded, leaning in and kissing both eyes.

He giggled, now fully awake, "And the instant I saw you, as you got out of the car, I got a raging hardon, and knew it had to be you!"

I arched my brows, questioning.

He let out a small laugh, looking into my eyes, "And as you walked up and I said 'hello', that look in your eyes..." he paused, "I realised that the fascination was mutual... and also understood that I had you..."

"And so you schemed, and you conspired... used all your evil charm to beguile poor little me, huh?" I questioned, kissing his nose tip.

He nodded with an enigmatic smile, the eyes once more alive, twinkling, "Well, if you could peek inside of me and see..." he replied softly, "I was horny, hard and shit scared..."

"Scared?" I interjected, eyebrows raised in wonder. "There were nothing shy or scared about you... and neither anything subtle," I said, reminiscing those three days of outrageous seduction - those obscene innuendos and retorts; that prancing around barely dressed, with a hardon...

"I didn't have a clue to what I was doing..." he confessed, "I knew you were attracted, I could see it in your eyes, and yet your silence, your refusal to initiate or respond was so frustratingly confusing, and frightening," he let out a sigh. "I was just desperate... and simply wanted you!"

"And then finally, the dropped towel..."

He nodded, "I was totally freaked... nervous and scared... I didn't know if you'd just slap me, or finally throw me out of your house... Call up my parents... I couldn't understand your reluctance and that made me angry," he confided in a low whisper, "And after dinner, I spent an agonising hour in my room... worrying and wondering... my heart slamming away, my body trembling all over, till finally I decided on doing something... anything, but force you to..." he fell silent, burying his face in my shoulder.

"You are outrageous... and a very charming young man," I said, stroking his head, kissing him on the mouth. "And how often have you played such games?"


"How come?" I asked in surprise, pulling him close.

He shrugged, "Never met anyone I really wanted to try it out on..."

We both laughed, Ranbir quickly climbing over me, hugging me...


The remaining three days were a whirring blur as the whole house turned into a wild playground - the bedroom, the livingroom, the den, the kitchen and the shower, as we indulged in our never-ending erotic games... making slow, passionate love, whenever we felt like it, wherever we were... long sessions of gentle, unhurried lovemaking... no longer frenzied, like that first night... And yes, even the darkened back porch, late at night, Ranbir sitting impaled on my lap... feeding each other icecream... drippy and messy... lapping it off with our tongue... both giggling like silly schoolboys, intoxicated with joy.

He didn't seem to get enough of me... totally fascinated as he explored every inch of my body with his willing mouth and curious hands... And I too paid my tribute to the long-lashed, green-eyed, gorgeous teen, glorifying each tiny inch of his smooth and beautiful body... adoring every nook and every fold... partaking my first taste of fresh teen spunk... Showering him with tender love till he was a blabbering mass of jelly... crying out to me... begging to be taken...


"You are hot!" he whispered with a soft giggle as we lay in bed after another vigorous session of wild lovemaking... reaching down and grabbing me, fondling the slimy stalk. "And how did you manage to live such a dull life for all these years, huh?"

I just pulled him to me, not bothering to answer his question... maybe, he wouldn't even understand.

"Mom will be here tomorrow," he said softly, snuggling closer.

"I've booked a cab," I informed, stroking his hair, "it'll be here around noon, you take it to the airport and pick her up. I'll be back by the time you return."

"Back?" he questioned, "where are you off to, huh?"

"Um... a meeting," I replied.

"Meeting," he asked astonished, "on a Sunday?"

"Um, well," I mumbled with a slight hint of self-conscious embarrassment, "Sunday mornings I'm at an orphanage..."

"Oh," he exclaimed, lifting up on his elbow, looking down at me, into my eyes.

"I'll be back around, after lunch, and by the time you get back home, I'll be there..." I explained, looking away from his intense gaze.

"She might want to stay at a hotel..." he suggested, laying his head back on my chest.

"Bullshit, she will stay here!"

"And I'll be leaving Monday morning..." he whispered, his fingers playfully twirling around in my pubic hair.

I remained silent... a thousand thoughts, a million emotions raging in my mind.

"Can I visit you on weekends?" he asked in a tiny voice, lifting up his head.

I looked into his eyes... they were more grey than green now... two large pools of liquid... once more unsure. "I'll pick you up," I said.

"I can be with you?" he enquired, tentative.

I smiled, nodding, patting his head.

"And, we'll make love?" he asked again, the eyes child-like, questioning.

I nodded once more, reaching up and cupping his handsome teen face.

The eyes flashed, sparkling wildly as he grinned down at me... quickly rolling over me, hugging me tight.

I pulled his face down, kissing him... kissing him with all the passion in my heart... with all the fire in my soul... hugging him back...


The mother came on that Sunday... ready to take her son away to college early next morning. She was beautiful, friendly and full of laughter... with eyes that were uncannily similar to her son's... or should I say, his eyes were similar to hers? She insisted on preparing dinner that night, and was full of gratitude for having her son with me...

He remained surprisingly quiet, seeming somewhat lost in thought... smiling quietly as his mother fussed over him... And at the dinner table sat silently eating as his mother recounted various anecdotes of his growing years... Observing how he seemed to have suddenly become a 'thorough gentleman' in the short week he had been with me... Wondering aloud if it was the thought of being away from home... "Or, did you wave some magic wand to tame this wild teen?" she asked me, making my heart skip a beat as a flush of shameful guilt swept across my mind... "Well," she was saying, "if you have something to do with his becoming a thoughtful and considerate young man," she laughed giving him an indulgent look, "then I might seriously consider leaving him with you for a very long time!"


He caught me in my bedroom early next morning as I came out of the bath, "You will pick me up?" he asked in a tense whisper, the eyes unsure, brimming.

He was ready, dressed for his trip, his new life... I nodded silently, not trusting my voice.

"You won't forget, huh?" it was the plea of a child, seeking reassurance.

I shook my head.

"And you'll love me?"

"Yes, I will..." I whispered back hoarsely, wrapping my arms around him, pulling him to me.

And as he clung to me, we heard his mother call, "Ranbir, breakfast is ready, get down fast or we'll be late, and get your uncle Jai along..."

He pulled back, and looking into my eyes gave a quick kiss, turning around and leaving the room, calling back to his mother.


As I watched the car drive away, with mother and son... headed for the campus that would be his home for the next five years, the profound wisdom of Walt Whitman ran through my mind - 'And henceforth I will go celebrate anything I see or am; And sing and laugh, and deny nothing...'

a story by Outlaw     

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Z A P P E D !