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  2. Nephylim

    Chapter 48

    Aria is an internet personality. His first thought will always go to social media. Fortunately, Amara has learned from professionals, and the instagram photos won't be going up until they're on their way home.
  3. Nephylim

    Chapter 48

    She is trying, for sure. She's not an easy woman. She's had to be hard and she has centuries of tradition, expectation and reputation to contend with. I have a feeling the boys are the perfect people to get her to loosen up a bit.
  4. Nephylim

    Chapter 47

    Thank you! Yes, this will be the perfect time to work on their relationship and shake down to something that suits them all. There are some uncomfortable situations ahead for Drew, but he's navigated stormy seas before.
  5. Nephylim

    Chapter 47

    They'll get time and space. How much they recover will be up to them.
  6. Nephylim

    Chapter 47

    Yes, Drew is a bit lost at sea Now they've paused for breath, they can work out their places in their relationship and start making a proper family
  7. droughtquake

    Part 4

    On the West Coast, our building codes are designed to prevent most earthquake damage in newer buildings. But faultlines are not restricted to the western third of the country. The New Madrid Seismic Zone, near St Louis, is capable of additional quakes similar to the four 1811-1812 earthquakes which were as large as 7.0 or greater. The first one of the four rang bells in Richmond, VA! There are faultlines further east too. We are prepared, you’re not.
  8. No words of wisdom from me here this time, just a deep understanding and sadness. So many factors can sap our drive, or dampen our will...yet I like to think that there is a Light ahead that can rekindle our hopes and dreams even in our darkest hours. Mine took a particularly hard hit when the fading became more than a metaphor at the end of 2015, and yet, friends have put me back on my literary path, if shakily. Hugs and kisses, dearest friend....
  9. Nephylim

    Chapter 47

    I'd love to go for the history. I want to see Athens.
  10. Nephylim

    Chapter 47

    I think lot could make fun wherever they go.
  11. Nephylim

    Chapter 47

    Everyone deserves some peace
  12. Nephylim

    Chapter 49

    Aria, Jay and Ceriann had a crazy, wild day, in and out of the pool, racing around the house and property and talking nonstop. They would occasionally come back to check in on Amara, Drew and Jeff, and then go running off again. Amara dozed for most of the time, leaving Drew and Jeff to chat. It was mostly casual and easy, but Drew was pulled up short when Jeff brought up the future. “I can’t stay with you and the boys, Drew, you know that, especially not if they’re jetting around all over the world. I have a family to think of. A family that’s already giving me a hard time for being here.” The way Jeff smiled reassured Drew that the “hard time” was in jest not serious. Drew would hate for his friend to get into trouble because of him. “I know. It’s just that with everything that’s been happening lately it’s good to have a friendly face around to keep my feet on the ground.” “You have plenty of friendly faces around and you know you can always call me when you have a disaster.” “When, not if?” “You know it.” Drew chuckled. “Besides.” Jeff took a long drink of something cold and orange. “You’ve got Jay and that kid’s got their feet planted in the earth. They might seem flighty but the things that come out of their mouth… Sometimes they sound like they’re fifty.” Drew huffed out a laugh. “I know what you mean.” He sighed. “I know you’ve got to go, but not only am I losing you but I’m going to have to get used to someone new hanging around. I’ve never been on this side of the job. I’m really not comfortable with it.” “Two new people,” Jeff said. “What do you mean?” “If you think you can go on being Aria’s bodyguard you are sadly deluded, my friend and the sooner you come to terms with it and get someone else in place the better.” “I…” Drew paused and sighed. “I know. It’s just… I don’t know if I can let it go.” “You don’t have to. I know you. You’ll protect both of them with your life, but you can’t go on in an official capacity. Down in that flat you froze because your feelings for the twins overwhelmed you. It’s understandable but it’s dangerous. You know it is. And today. You were so concerned for their wellbeing you slipped up on the security. Then you panicked and scared Aria.” Drew groaned and rubbed his hand over his face. “I know. That was unforgiveable.” “Oh, I don’t know. It all turned out well in the end.” “Yeah, I suppose.” “But as soon as we get back, I’m going into the office and start going through bios. I’ll send you a couple to interview that I think might fit in.” “You don’t have to do it straight away.” “Yes I do. I’ll have them ready for interview within two days.” “Jeff…” “No arguments, Drew. You know I’m right, and the sooner you get it done the better.” “Like pulling off a plaster.” Jeff laughed aloud. “As I remember you were a big baby about pulling off plasters” “Only because you’re a sadistic madman.” Jeff chuckled. “Only with you.” That evening, after dinner, everyone was exhausted. They sat in front of the massive television and all but Drew and Jay fell asleep. By eight o’clock Drew was ready for bed. Jay beat him to it. They got up and stretched. "I'm going to bed. It's been a long day." "It has. Hopefully tomorrow will be a quieter one.” “For you maybe but Aria’s already planned a trip down to town and some time on the beach. I think I’m going to have to drug him at some point so I can get some rest. Between him and your sister, I can’t see how I’m going to survive the week.” “You’ll manage,” Amara said sleepily, sitting up, rubbing his eyes. “Says the person who’s been sleeping half the day.” “Give me a couple of days and I’ll take over. Give you a rest.” “Somehow, I can’t see that happening. He really would kill you.” Amara frowned. “I’ll be fine. I want to spend time with you. I don’t know how much longer Alexi can hold the tour, then I won’t see any of you for months.” “It’s going to be a while before you’re up to that,” Drew said. “I know how physically exhausting touring can be.” A strange expression darkened Amara’s face and he turned his face away. Drew wondered if he was missing the superstar life. “Come on,” Drew said. “Let’s get to bed. We can think of that another day. Let’s just enjoy the holiday.” “Sounds like a good idea,” Amara said, but he was still frowning when they climbed the stairs. Aria was fast asleep, so Drew carried him. Aria had chosen rooms that afternoon, with Jay and Ceriann, and had unpacked everything—after rearranging half the furniture. From the snippets he’d heard, one of the reasons Aria wanted to go to town the next day was to see what the shops had by way of soft furnishing and rugs so he could redecorate a little. Drew could see absolutely nothing wrong with the rooms as they were. They were large, light and airy, with solid wood furniture and hessian rugs on the honey-toned wooden floor. The décor was muted, with earthy tones highlighting a neutral background. Everything was simple but clearly expensive. Drew thought that the furniture in the bedroom alone probably cost more than everything in his mother’s whole house—and the car. He didn’t say anything though, because he knew he was going to have to work on that attitude. It wasn’t fair on the boys and truly the villa was extraordinarily beautiful while maintaining a comfortable, homey feel. He had a feeling he was going to learn to love it here very quickly and resolved to bring his mother and family as soon as he could. Amara went into the bathroom while Drew undressed Aria and got him into bed. He half woke in the middle of it so was able to be of some help. “Are you sleeping with me tonight?” he asked sleepily. Drew smiled and kissed him gently. “Tonight and every night.” Aria smiled and went straight back to sleep. Drew glanced up to find Amara in the doorway of the bathroom. It was a shared one with two doors, one leading into this room and one into the adjoining room, which was Amara’s. Amara looked lost and sad. He was wearing nothing but sleep pants and the wound in his side looked angry and raw, although it was finally healing well. He was going to have scar but he didn’t seem bothered by that. Maybe he felt more confident because Drew’s were worse. Drew badly wanted to kiss the scar and whisper over and over that Amara was still the most beautiful creature Drew had ever seen and if the scar was part of him it was beautiful too. However, it was still sore, the skin sensitive to touch. He’d still been wearing dressings up to the day before, more to stop his clothing catching and rubbing than because he needed them for the wounds now. Because of the infection, he’d had to have a drain and that had taken the longest to heal. He was well on his way to a full recovery now, although Drew had his suspicions that although the physical wounds were fading it might take longer for the mental ones to follow. “Are you alright?” “Yes, I just… I wish I was sleeping with you, too, but I don’t think I could stand it. Especially not tonight after the journey. Everything hurts.” “Do you want me to come lie with you until you go to sleep?” The smile Amara gave him was blinding. “Go get into bed and I’ll join you when I’ve taken care of business.” “Well,” Amara gave him a look that was blatantly hungry. This was the old Amara peeping through. The one Drew had known at the start. Effortlessly sexy and shameless. “I haven’t had my shower yet and I was thinking you might join me. Just to make sure I don’t slip.” Drew groaned. “You’re going to kill me. I can’t do that and not…” Amara was not well enough for sex yet. The doctor was quite clear about that. The infection had gone deep and there was a lot of internal healing to do, not to mention his ribs which were probably more painful than the wound still. “Did I mention that I’ve had some good ideas about how we might…have fun without hurting me. I want to try some out and I’m feeling pretty lonely right now, so I’d really like to get close.” “We can get close without…” “I know, but I don’t want to.” Drew knew he should be sensible and that it would probably end in tears, but hell he was only human and Amara was looking at him as if he wanted to eat him, and cry at the same time. Drew simply couldn’t resist. He felt as if he was being drawn across the room by a rope and he wasn’t about to fight too hard. There were no words to describe how Drew felt taking Amara into his arms. He was gentle but Amara clung to him and his kiss was fierce. Drew scrambled to undress and before he knew it they were in the shower and the whole of Amara’s glorious body was on show, every inch of it breath-taking in its beauty. Drew simply couldn’t believe he was so lucky. Sometimes it felt as though he was in a dream and one day soon he would wake up and it would all be gone. But Amara didn’t feel like a dream right then. He was very much flesh and bone and grace and beauty, and he was all Drew’s. They didn’t fuck, but Amara was right, he did have some good ideas and by the time they settled down, side by side, their bodies pressed against each other they were both sated and Drew was as happy as he’d ever been. He’d fully intended to go back to Aria once Amara was asleep, but in fact he fell asleep before Amara did and he didn’t stir until light, streaming through the large windows woke him. For a moment, Drew was confused, and couldn’t remember where he was. Then memory flowed back with a warm rush. He was still lying next to Amara, curled protectively around him, and it seemed like the combination of the busy day and their relaxation at the end of it, had made Amara so tired he hadn’t moved much either. He was lying on his back, one arm thrown up over his head and the other resting across is stomach. With his hair fanned out over the pillow he could have been posing for a magazine shot, or a poster for Sleeping Beauty. Drew was mesmerised. Then he became aware of something else. He and Amara were not alone in the bed. He turned slowly onto his back, careful not to disturb Amara. Aria, sensing the movement stirred and snuggled closer, not waking. If Amara looked like Sleeping Beauty, Aria was Snow White. Pale and perfect with more colour in his cheeks than Amara and his lips slightly parted and rosy. He had one hand under his cheek, and he looked cute and comfortable. God, Drew was a lucky man. Drew had no idea what time it was, so he made no move to get up. There was nowhere he could go that was better than this. Nothing he could do that compared to gazing at his boys and glowing with the knowledge that he loved them, and they loved him right back. Who could ask for more? He woke some time later to a kiss. It was a gentle kiss accompanied by hands roving over his body. Teeth worried his lip and surprisingly it was Aria who murmured in his ear. “Wake up Drew. It’s late and I need food.” Drew’s lips curled into a smile, but he didn’t move. He was enjoying this far too much. Instead, he kissed Aria back. Again, there was that slight pause, as Aria automatically froze, then he relaxed again. Surprisingly, the hand, lazily stroking his stomach hadn’t faltered and when it began to work its way down, toying with the hair, gently tugging… His eyes flew open and his hand ran up the arm attached to the questing hand. It wasn’t attached to Aria. “Ssh,” Amara purred. “We’re your alarm clock,” Aria said cheerfully. “We’re going to help you get up.” He put his lips close to Drew’s ear. “That doesn’t mean get out of bed.” “Aria.” Amara groaned and made a face at his brother. “What did I tell you about being sexy?” “Did I get it wrong?” Aria asked, his eyes wide. “No,” Drew said, pulling Aria down beside him. “You were perfect. You’re always perfect.” “Not always,” Amara said, laughing, “but pretty close.” “You, too, Mara.” Aria jumped in, eager, as always, to protect his brother. “Far from perfect, but I get by.” Amara gave a gentle tug of the hair on Drew’s balls and he moaned. “Do you like your alarm clock?” “I don’t know. It hasn’t done its job yet.” “What’s that,” Amara asked, teasing Drew with a long stroke. “Getting me up,” Drew moaned. “Oh, I don’t know, something’s definitely getting up.” Aria giggled. “That’s it,” Amara said, hardly able to contain his own laugh. “Out of the room. You’re ruining the moment.” “I am not. I want to play too. You said I could. I want to help make Drew come and I want to kiss him when you…do stuff. I don’t have to watch when I’m kissing him, so you can…you know…do stuff.” “What do you think, Drew,” Amara purred in his ear. “Do you want to…do stuff?” “Oh God, yes. I want to do all the stuff you got for me.” “Well, my supply of stuff is a little limited at the moment, but I’ll see what I can do.” Aria stifled a giggle against Drew’s lips. Drew thought it was impossible for anyone to have ever been as happy as he was right then. We’re going to have to go to the mainland tomorrow,” Aria announced several hours later, as they ate a light lunch on the shaded patio of the little café where Drew and Amara had spent most of the morning while the others shopped. They’d already sent the jeep back to the villa once to offload their purchases. Aria and Jay were absolutely in their element in the quaint little town with its charming market and canopied shops. Ceriann bounced off their energies, and although neither shopping nor interior design had ever, to Drew’s knowledge, been her forte, she seemed to be holding her own. Jeff simply wandered along behind smiling like an indulgent father. Drew wondered how many people thought that Ceriann and Jeff were a couple out with their children. Hm. If that was the case where would he fit in? The help? “Have you bought everything on the island, then,” Amara teased. “Hardly, and there’s a bigger town on the other side, but they don’t have proper furniture shops.” “Isn’t there enough furniture in the house already?” Ceriann asked. “Yes, but the bed’s too small. Apparently, they all are. I suppose they don’t often need beds for three.” “Are you kidding? When we were kids there was often five to a bed, six when Drew came along, but he was only a baby. By the time he was old enough to spread out over half the entire bed and push the rest of us out, we were down to five again.” A flash of hurt shot through Drew, a tiny pang of jealousy that Ceriann and Sioned had more memories of their father than he had. Most of Drew’s memories were of kicking back against him. Drew’s father had been a big man, in size and personality. His voice was loud, his laugh hearty and his heart as big as the ocean. Sometimes Drew missed him so fiercely it was a physical pain. You all slept together? In one bed?” “We had our own beds but loved to get together in our Mam and Dad’s. It was cosy and soft and the safest place in the world. No matter what problems you had, or stupid little worries, they all went away when you snuggled down under the duvet with arms and legs everywhere, and the love was just as warm as the quilt.” “Aren’t you just the poet,” Drew said, shocked at the almost bitter note in his voice. Ordinarily, Ceriann would have been all over that, but today she just smiled. A look passed between them that made something deep inside that had been curled up and cold for a long time, open just that little bit more. He understood then about those looks Amara and Aria shared. Maybe one day he and Ceriann would get to that point too. Hell, maybe they already were. “Of course, when you came along, with those hard little elbows and knees you were so pointy no one wanted to sleep with you.” “Hey,” he complained, both at her words and that she’d leaned across the table and ruffled his hair. “He’s not sharp anymore,” Aria said, patting Drew’s knee. “And I know two people who really want to sleep with him, but the bed’s too small.” “It wouldn’t be if he wasn’t so pointy,” Ceriann said with a smirk. “Tell me he doesn’t take up more than half of the bed.” “Well,” Aria said slowly, apparently giving the question serious thought, “he does take up a lot of space, but that’s because he’s big not because he’s pointy.” “He is a bit pointy.” Amara grinned, a sly expression on his face. “For example, this morning when his alarm got him up.” Drew choked on a sip of coffee and Aria almost fell off his chair, he was laughing so much. “I didn’t hear an alarm clock,” Ceriann said. “That’s because you were all the way over on the other side of the house.” “Why did you set an alarm? We’re supposed to be on holiday.” “We had to…um…do stuff, before we started the day.” How Amara could remain so dead-pan Drew would never know. Aria certainly couldn’t. He laughed so hard, tears streamed down his face. “What have you lot been up to now,” Jeff asked with the long-suffering air of a father of teens. “Stuff.” Aria choked and Drew slapped him on the back. “Ignore them.” Ceriann grinned at Drew as she delicately demolished a sandwich. “It’s probably something dirty.” “Oh, absolutely.” Amara wasn’t the only one who could keep a straight face. Jay managed fine. “I know those expressions. I can quite imagine what that alarm call was, and which part of Drew was getting up.” Heat suffused Drew’s face and he couldn’t look his sister in the eye as she laughed as enthusiastically as Aria. “Hey.” Amara threw a bread roll at Jay. “Stop imagining our boyfriend in compromising situations.” “It wasn’t compromising me at all,” Jay said coolly. “I can imagine him in much worse situations than that.” “I’d rather you didn’t,” Drew said. “I’d never be able to look you in the eye again if I thought you’d been doing that.” “Oh dear.” Aria stopped laughing and shook his head at Drew. “You’ve really done it now.” He turned to Amara. “We should sit him down and tell him the rules.” “What rules,” Drew asked, mystified. “We really should,” Amara agreed. “Absolutely.” Jay nodded and dunked the bread roll Amara had thrown at them into a bowl of vinegar and olive oil. “What rules.” “An important one,” Amara started. “A very important one.” “Is that you never,” “Never, ever give Jay ammunition.” “If you admit weakness you’re done for.” “They’ll never let you forget.” “You’ll get comments about alarms.” “And getting up.” “And stuff.” “Probably forever.” “Probably,” Jay agreed. Drew groaned. “We should compare notes,” Ceriann said. “We could make his life a complete misery.” “You already do.” “You should keep your twins under control,” Jay said, getting to their feet and stretching. “They’ll get you into so much trouble if you don’t. Anyone want to swim?” “I do.” Aria immediately jumped to his feet, taking a last olive from the enormous bowl on the table. “Count me in.” Ceriann followed suit, settling her sun hat on her golden curls. “I suppose I don’t have a choice.” Jeff tried to make his words sound gruff, but his grin suggested it wasn’t such a hardship. “I’d better come if only to make sure you lot have enough sunscreen on. I don’t want any moaning about sunburn tonight, not with that fair skin.” “I don’t really feel up to it right now,” Amara said. “I’m happy sitting here.” “Oh.” Aria sat down like a balloon with the air let out. “I’m sorry. I didn’t think. I’ll stay with you.” “You will not. We’re here to have fun, and your fun is swimming so go have it and leave me to have mine sitting in the shade eating fruit and sherbet.” “But—” “Go.” “I’ll stay,” Drew said. “I’m not fussed on swimming. Maybe we can take a gentle walk along the shore. I was talking to someone earlier and they said there’s a track along the top of the cliff, or we could go across the beach.” Amara smiled at him, with all the warmth of the midday sun, and Drew was quite sure that the smile he returned was that of a goofy, lovesick fool. He didn’t care. When the others headed toward the beach, the driver took Amara and Drew to the start of the cliff path. Drew helped Amara from the jeep and Amara closed his eyes and stretched his back, a beatific smile on his face. “It smells so good.” Drew couldn’t say he was wrong. There was something about the air. It was crisp and clean and even though it was so much hotter than he was used to, it wasn’t the clammy, sticky heat of summer he was used to. It smelled of salt and olives and winds from the ocean. A slight breeze lifted Amara’s hair and he sighed a long, happy sigh. “Let’s walk.”
  13. ColumbusGuy

    Part 4

    Ah, I love a happy ending! Mike has a human travel companion at last, and Bobby has found he isn't entirely alone and cut off from his family. The reference to the classic authors Bobby knew made me smile, as it brought back many happy hours of my reading those same greats as a teen...and your subtle use of the old treasure trove there brought to mind one I've mentioned to you before: Bobby reminds me so much of one of the heroes from Raymond F. Jones novels set in the 50s and involving travels among the stars. He too is just a youth caught up in circumstances he has no control over, yet wins through in the end, rather than being someone from a future era as imagined back then. I think that feature is what continues to enliven the world of Charlie and his friends for me...contemporary boys finding themselves caught up in wondrous events, and yet remaining true to themselves. Let's see...Halloween next, or is there another Door ahead?
  14. At long last, a better ending to an awful day for our two heroes. I dare say that Sean has a Plan B and a Plan C in that self-serving destructive mind of his. I doubt that he will allow a small setback dissuade him from his goal. As for that final level boss, there's clearly a lot of thought gone into that. The stuff of fantasies; at least someones anyway.
  15. droughtquake

    Part 3

    or ? ;–)
  16. The third of the three Ehrenbaum-Degele pieces @Lyssaso kindly typed up and shared with me, this is a World War I poem. He was killed in action only a few days after his 26th birthday in 1915. 


    We carry the firmament's heavy white heat

    Upon our knapsacks, and in our helmets too. 

    Though we probably have the fixed grin of rogues,

    We've forgotten how to smile about ourselves.


    We like to sodden mud puddles on the paths 

    With barren cheekbones, avariciously blank.

    We would lay us in any sort of garbage,

    If it meant some sleep for a second or two. 


    The blisters on the ragged soles of our feet 

    Fester ferric iron; and so like our souls 

    Wish to run through this feverishly hot land. 


    We are entirely hollowed out, burned out,

    But the captain suddenly orders us sing,

    And our hearts break trying to get past our lips.  

    Hans Ehrenbaum-Degele

    1. Mikiesboy


      Sad beyond measure

  17. TheZot

    Chapter 16

    Nah, it’s been done and posted since 2006. I think at some point in one of the GA site makeovers the last few chapters went missing here and I didn’t notice. The ending certainly isn’t to everyone’s liking, but it ended the way I wanted it to, and the way that worked out for the characters. Unfortunately not every conclusion is completely happy.
  18. Today
  19. wenmale64

    Chapter 22.3

    Great chapter. I loved the countdown/delay before Milly's schriek after the 'mate' comment. I know people that would be just like that as the news sunk in slowly . Keep up the good writing!!
  20. hello Wednesday



  21. Wesley8890

    Chapter 92

    This just keeps getting weirder and weirder
  22. Tonyr

    Chapter 16

    I guess the author has just invented a new way of finishing a story (after nearly a decade) without really finishing it. I'm sorry to be the one to have to tell it to your face, you didn't finish anything you just got the previous chapter going on and suddenly you pulled out a 'The end' (kindda), and that was it. You shouldn't really have bothered, it was already unfinished anyway since 2011.
  23. sapphire2619

    Chapter 92

    Omg better than expectations lol poor kohen and captain no easy baby for them
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