Pig-Boy and The Insectorator - 4. A Ferocious Welcome
David rolled out of bed as soon as he awoke and pulled on shorts and a T-shirt in the cool air of dawn. In the kitchen, he packed a lunch and left a note telling his parents where he was going and when he would be back. Outside, the sun was peeping over the horizon.
Once on the road, he set the pedal-assist motor to its highest setting and pedaled as fast as he could. He was so full of excitement and happiness that he couldn’t help singing as he raced along the highway. The song that rose to his lips was an old one from a Broadway musical — “Oh, What a Beautiful Morning.”
When he had sung and pedaled himself breathless, he laughed and slowed. An hour brought him to where the logging road joined the highway. Another hour’s pumping, and he arrived at the forested upper edge of the park. After stowing his bicycle, he wanted to run to the glade, but his eagerness to see the mysterious boy embarrassed him. He forced himself to walk, then compromised by trotting through the woods to the bank of the stream. From there, he hiked to the place where he could cross to the other side. Then he headed towards the clearing where he hoped to meet the forest boy, Zhiv.
A high-pitched scream slashed through the forest morning bird calls, and David froze. He looked for the source. He heard the vicious snarl again and peered around to locate it. Fifty feet ahead, a mountain lion faced him. The great cat crouched low with every muscle tensed, and clawed the earth, ready to charge. He focused his golden eyes on David and rasped again. David stepped backward. He heard a growl behind him and looked over his shoulder. An enormous black bear reared and bared his teeth. Retreat seemed impossible.
Pete hauled the barbecue out of the garage to the brick-paved patio behind their house. The morning was warm and sunny, and it felt like it could get hot later. He planned to inaugurate the summer barbecue season that evening. Burgers or steaks would make a tasty, simple supper. He set up the barbecue where he could plug it in and attached a gas canister. When he opened the hood, the bright sunlight revealed traces of last year’s grease. Pete set to work on them with a wire brush and some detergent, and soon had the grill gleaming.
Doreen finished raking a nearby flowerbed. She had decided to sow nasturtium seeds. The homely little plants appealed to her, and their fresh, peppery leaves put a zing in salads. She came over and sat near Pete on the low brick wall surrounding the patio. “That looks great,” she said. “Makes me hungry just to look at it.”
Pete shared his idea for their supper that night.
Doreen didn’t speak for a minute. When she did reply, Pete could tell the mood had changed.
“Pete, I’m tired of you and David jousting over this food thing. You know we won’t have a nice family cookout tonight. We’ll end up with you guys staring in opposite directions. He’ll be slurping a noodle soup, and you’ll be chewing up a bleeding chunk of beef.”
“It’s his fault,” said Pete. “Talk to him.”
“Pete, he’s been a vegan for four years now. He’s not gonna change.”
“Well, neither am I. I know what I like, and I don’t see why he can’t like it too.”
“You haven’t even tried. Have you ever tasted tofu? Or a veggie-burger? Even once?”
“Well, no.” Pete felt he was getting backed into a corner.
“Pete, he’s a kid. You’re an adult. I want you to act like an adult. He needs his father.”
Pete directed a dreamy gaze up into the cloudless blue sky. “It was such a nice morning…”
“Okay! What do you want me to do?”
“I’m gonna go into town to shop for groceries this afternoon. I’m gonna buy some of those fake meat burgers, those ones made out of plants. I’m gonna buy vegan mayo and all the fixin’s for burgers, and I want you to grill those burgers, on that grill, for all of us to eat. And I want you to do that without making any sarcastic remarks.”
“No meat? And no sarcastic remarks? My two favorite things! You’re killin’ me, woman!”
“Okay,” conceded Pete. “Go ahead, buy ’em. I guess it won’t kill me to grill a few plants and be nice for a change.”
River was having a late breakfast with his father and his brother, Aaron. His father was still grousing about Aaron’s speeding ticket. He complained about the five hundred dollar fine. On top of that, the fees for car insurance would increase for all their vehicles.
“Who was it gave you that ticket, anyway?” he asked. He knew the local sheriff and thought perhaps he could make the ticket disappear, if he talked to him.
“It wasn’t the sheriff,” said Aaron. “It was one of the deputies. McAdam is the name on the ticket.”
“He’s a member of the Elks. Maybe I can talk to him at our next meeting.” He turned to River. “He’s got a kid about your age. You know him?”
“He goes to my school,” said River. “Stuck-up, snotty kid. Walks around all proud, talking about how he’s vegan.”
“He’s vegan? What the fuck is that?” said his father.
“Means he don’t eat meat, none at all. No meat of any kind,” said River.
“Holy shit!” exclaimed his father. He took the idea of anyone not eating meat as a personal affront. “Are they hippies or something? Hari fairy fucking Krishnas?”
“I dunno,” said River.
“What’s he look like,” asked Aaron.
“Skinny kid, a little shorter than me. He’s got long black hair, looks like a total nerd,” said River. “He always wears T-shirts that say things like ‘Plant-Powered’ or, ‘If you love animals, don’t eat them.’ Guys say he’s queer too.”
Aaron recalled the boy he’d forced off the road on his flight down the mountain. “I nearly hit a kid like that when I was comin’ down the mountain. He was hoggin’ the road on his bike, and I just about crashed from tryin’ not to hit him. I bet he phoned his daddy and bitched about it, and that’s why McAdam decided to pull me over and give me that ticket.”
“So, Deputy McAdam got a push from below…” River’s father considered this, then nodded. “I’ll talk to the sheriff and get him to give a little push from above. Maybe Deputy McAdam will realize he made a mistake, and that ticket will disappear.” He laughed.
“River, when you see that kid in school, find out if he squealed to his daddy. The deputy won’t be lookin’ so good if it turns out he’s takin’ orders from his kid.”
For a dozen heartbeats, David stood petrified in fear between the bear and the mountain lion. His heart thumped so hard he felt it in his throat. Then he edged sideways. The puma snarled. David froze. The bear growled. David looked ahead to the puma. It stepped toward him. David felt pee squirting into his underwear. He whimpered as it trickled down his leg into his shoe. He turned to run.
“Oh! No! No!” cried a voice from the trees behind the puma. The naked forest boy ran up to David. “Oh, I’m so sorry! I didn’t mean this to happen. They’re just doing their job. Listen, they’ll stop growling if you take your clothes off. Please. Quickly! Like the first time you came.”
“You want me to take my clothes off?” asked David.
“They do,” said the boy, “but me too. You’ve seen me. It’s only fair I get to see you. I don’t make the rules here, but I like the no-clothes rule.”
David pulled his T-shirt over his head. He felt the boy undoing the top of his shorts and pulling them down.
“Oh, they’ve made you pee yourself! I really am sorry!” He undid the Velcro bindings on David’s shoes. “And your shoes are full of pee too. This is terrible!” He held a shoe upside down to empty the pee. Then he stood and looked into David’s eyes. “I wanted so much for you to like me,” he said. Two large tears rolled down his cheeks.
“Please don’t cry. I’m fine, and I like you. Should we be running away?”
“Oh, no. Now that you’re naked, and I’m here, they wouldn’t dream of hurting you. You’re okay now? You’re not angry?”
David laughed. “No, I’m not angry.”
“Oh, good! I’m Zhiv. And the puma is Erg. The bear is Berky. Those are not their real names, just as close as I can come with a human mouth.”
David held out his hand. “I’m David. I’m happy to meet you, Zhiv.”
Zhiv said, “Here, we usually hug our friends. I hope you don’t mind.” He pulled David into a hug.
“No,” said David. “It’s nice.” The boy’s woodsy, earthy scent filled his nostrils. He welcomed the sense he had of someone entering his mind. It was like a mental manifestation of the warm flesh pressing against him. He leaned back and looked into Zhiv’s face. “That’s you, isn’t it, in my mind?” He tapped the side of his head.
“Yeah” said Zhiv. “I’m surprised you notice. Usually, it’s just me and my friends. I hope it doesn’t bother you. I can’t help it.”
“Does that mean you can read my mind?” asked David, worried about losing all his privacy.
Zhiv laughed. “No, not in the way you mean, anyway. I can read moods and feelings, see pictures and sometimes hear sounds, but your thoughts are your own.” Then a blush rose beneath his tanned cheeks, and he said, “David? I like your feelings, and I like you.”
They pulled apart and David looked down to where his uncontrollable penis was poking up. Zhiv’s penis was equally stiff, but that didn’t prevent David from feeling shy.
“I’m sorry about that,” said David, looking down. “It’s just I’m not used to hugging other people when I’m naked. I hope you don’t mind. I can’t help it.”
“Mind?” laughed Zhiv. He pulled David close against him, so their erections squashed together. “I don’t mind at all. It feels good. You feel good. It makes me want to kiss you. Is that okay?”
“If you like,” said David.
David felt lips pressed against his cheek, and Zhiv hugged him so tightly he couldn’t breathe, but he didn’t mind.
Zhiv stood back then and said, “C’mon, let’s go to where I stay. We’re too close to the road here, and it makes us nervous. But first, you know, it would be mannerly for you to hug Erg and Berky.”
“Don’t be afraid,” said Zhiv. “Be respectful. They're persons, like you and me, and this is their place.”
David knelt and reached out toward the puma, and an instant later, the great cat was in his arms and licking his neck. Erg purred and vibrated.
When David stood and turned, the bear was there with his forelegs opened wide. David moved in, and the bear enveloped him in a tight embrace. His face was pressed into Berky’s chest fur. The bear snuffled in his hair, then released him. Zhiv finished stuffing David’s clothes into his pack, stood up, and pulled the pack onto his back.
“Oh, I can carry that,” said David, and reached toward the pack.
“Did you bring some oatmeal for me? That’s what’s in the pack?”
“I love oatmeal! Thank you! Your feet are too soft and tender to be carrying any extra weight. I’ve been barefoot for a long time, and mine are tough, so I’ll carry the pack. Anyway, you lugged it all the way here, so I’ll take it the rest of the way. It’s only fair. Let’s go.”
Zhiv led them back to the stream to rinse the pee from David’s shorts, underwear, shoes, and socks. “We’ll dry them on the rocks when we get to my place. It’s hotter up there.” David squatted in mid-stream and splashed himself clean.
Zhiv led the way through the pathless woods. Erg bounded ahead and disappeared into the undergrowth. Berky dropped back and brought up the rear. Other animals accompanied them. Birds flitted through the trees on both sides. A bushy-tailed coyote loped alongside, so light-footed he seemed to float. David caught glimpses of squirrels, a raccoon, a fox, mice and a couple of garter snakes. Many animals came up to the boys. Zhiv greeted and embraced each one. It wasn’t a quiet walk through the forest. It was more like a procession, with Zhiv at its center.
Zhiv snacked as they walked. Sometimes he picked a few dry berries, other times some mushrooms or some green shoots. He always shared this foraged food with David. “This is my cafeteria,” he joked.
Their route led upwards. They climbed until they came out of the trees onto the ridge where David had eaten lunch on his last visit. They paused there to catch their breath.
David surveyed the forest below and the high mountain meadows above the tree line. He saw four horses racing across one of those distant fields, a pinto, a gray, a black, and a reddish brown horse. “Wild horses,” he said. “I didn’t know we had wild horses here.”
“They just came,” said Zhiv. “Yesterday. They’re not wild, not yet, but they’re learning. They came for the mara, but they also came to run in the high meadows. They haven’t been able to run free for years. They’re drunk on it. I can feel their happiness from here.”
“What’s the mara?” asked David.
“We’re in the mara,” said Zhiv. “Let’s move on. We’re not far from where I sleep. I’ll tell you what I can when we get there.”
“I have a lot of questions,” said David.
“And there’s a lot I need to tell you,” said Zhiv.
Derek’s mother stood in the doorway. “Derek’s not here, and I don’t know where he is. Go around the back. The kid’s in the tub, and if anybody knows where Derek went, he will.”
River went around the side of the house to the back patio where the hot tub was. Jeremy was facing away from him, pressed up close against the wall of the tub. River could see that he was naked. He stood on the opposite side of the tub. “Hey, Jeremy, whatcha doing?”
Jeremy gave a little jump and turned around. His eyes narrowed when he saw River. “Nothin’ much.” He shrugged. “Derek ain’t here.”
“I know,” said River. “Your mom said you might know where he went.”
The bubbles on the water made it difficult for River to see, but he was pretty sure that Jeremy had an erection. He seemed to be stroking it underwater while they talked.
“He said he was gonna go to the Kelmans, to see that girl he’s got the hots for,” said Jeremy. Contractions of the muscles of his right arm betrayed what he was doing under the surface foam.
“Hey, Jeremy,” said his mother from the patio doorway. “I need some cigarettes and groceries from the store. Put some clothes on, and let’s go.”
“I don’t wanna go. Can’t I stay here?”
“You know you can’t stay here by yourself,” said his mother. “Get out and get some clothes on. Now!”
“What about if River stays with me? He’s as big as Derek, and you let me stay with Derek all the time.”
“Yeah, but maybe River doesn’t want to stay.” She looked at River with her eyebrows raised.
“You want to stay, don’t you, River?” pleaded Jeremy. “C’mon, we’ll have some fun.”
River tried to appear impartial.
Jeremy’s mother said to River. “I’ll only be gone about an hour, or two at the most. Can you stick around till I get back?”
“Yeah, okay,” said River, suppressing the glee he felt at being alone with a naked Jeremy.
“You don’t mind?” she said.
“No, it’s fine. I got nothin’ else to do.”
“Yay!” shouted Jeremy.
“Okay,” said his mother. “But River, you got to watch him close if he’s in the tub or the pool. I don’t want to come back to find a drowned kid. He’s a handful, but I love him.”
“Love you, too, Mom,” said Jeremy. Then he looked at River, winked, and said, “She’s a handful, but I love her.”
His mother laughed hoarsely, “You’re a brat,” she said.
“I’ll watch him,” said River.
A few minutes later, they heard her car pull out of the driveway.
Jeremy said, “C’mon River. Get in the tub with me. We’ll have some fun.”
“I didn’t bring my swim suit,” said River.
“You don’t need a suit,” said Jeremy. “There’s nobody here except you and me, and I’m not wearing a suit. Derek and me tub naked all the time.”
River dropped his clothes on a deck chair and lowered himself into the warm water. “Oh, that’s nice!” he said.
“I’ll put the jets on high,” said Jeremy, and fiddled with the controls.
River felt the massage of the warm jets of water and closed his eyes. He opened them wide when he felt Jeremy’s hand grip his penis.
“Hey, what’re you doing?” he said.
“I wanted to feel your dick,” said Jeremy. He looked at River with raised eyebrows and shrugged. “You’re always grabbing mine, so it’s only fair.”
“Yeah, well…” said River.
“Wow, it’s getting hard. It’s really hard!” interrupted the kid.
“Well, maybe if you weren’t holding it,” muttered River.
“Well, I like holding it,” stated Jeremy. He squeezed it. “And you like it too, don’t you? That’s why it’s hard.”
River closed his eyes. Jeremy stroked River’s penis once, twice and a third time. River was paralyzed by how great it felt, so much better than his own hand.
Jeremy crawled on top of River and pressed his stiff nubbin against River’s leg. “You can feel mine if you want. Just ask. But you have to say ‘please.’”
"Can I? Please?"
River marveled that a little bit of muscle like that could be so hard, like it was a bone, a bone made from hot steel. He caught himself going into a dream, so he sat up and wrapped an arm around the younger boy’s shoulders. It was okay for him to steal feels from Jeremy. That was just fooling around, but when they were lying together like this, it was getting gay.
“Jeremy, you know we shouldn’t be doing this kind of stuff.”
“But we are,” said Jeremy, in a dry tone. “It’s fun, and you really like it. Don’t worry. Relax. It’s just you and me here, and we can do whatever we want. Nobody can see us, and nobody cares what we do.” He stroked River’s swollen erection three more times and pressed his own against River’s thigh. Then he released River and pulled himself up so he was sitting in River’s lap with their erections touching. “You know how to kiss? I really need to learn how to kiss, and Derek won’t show me. Is it fun?”
“I don’t know,” said River. “I’ve never kissed anybody.” River felt he was play-dough in the boy’s hands.
“You don’t mind kissing me, do you?” asked Jeremy. “Because you don’t have to kiss me.”
“No, that’s okay,” said River, lost in contemplation of the boy’s milky white teeth and red lips.
“Good,” said Jeremy. “First, I’ll kiss you, then you can kiss me. Then we can see if it feels okay and talk about it, figure it out as we go along. It can’t be too hard. People do it all the time. Are you ready?”
Jeremy leaned in and pressed his closed lips against River’s for twenty seconds. Then he sat back with a puzzled expression on his face. “It’s okay, but not very exciting.”
“I think when people do it, they do it with their mouths open,” said River.
“Okay. Let’s try that. It’s your turn.” He leaned forward until their open mouths met. River pushed his tongue forward until it touched Jeremy’s tongue.
Jeremy jumped back, grinning. “Wow! That was something else! Now it’s my turn.”
This time their tongues met and then explored everything they could reach. Jeremy’s tongue felt beautiful in River’s mouth. How it darted, and dived, and changed shape enthralled him. It was like a tiny version of the mercurial boy, dancing in his mouth. Jeremy wrapped his legs around River’s back, and his arms encircled River’s neck.
River lost track of how long they embraced. While they kissed, Jeremy writhed against River’s body. He pumped faster and faster until they were both bucking in spasms.
They lay in each other’s arms then, until their hearts slowed. River felt Jeremy kissing his neck and hugging him.
Jeremy jumped up suddenly, turned the jets down to low, and snuggled back into River’s embrace.
“You’re gay, aren’t you?” Jeremy said into River’s ear.
“Well,” said River, enjoying the cuddle but feeling uneasy at Jeremy’s dry tone. “If I am, then so are you, aren’t you?”
“Naw,” said Jeremy. “I’m still too young to be gay, or straight, or whatever. I’m just playing around. But you’re not. You’re really gay. You’re really into it. Don’t worry. I don’t think I’ll tell anyone. Not now, anyway, but from now on, you’ve got to do whatever I say."
“Aw, c’mon Jeremy. I’m not gonna do whatever you say.”
“Yes, you are,” said Jeremy. “I’d hate to have to tell my mom about how you made me do what we just did.” In a tearful, higher voice, he said, “Mom, he held me down and said he was gonna drown me if I didn’t let him play with my wiener!”
River was speechless.
In normal tones, Jeremy continued, “And we can have some fun sometimes. I might let you suck my wiener. Yeah, I think I’d like that. It’s supposed to be fun too. All you have to do is ask, nicely.”
Half of River wanted to jump out of the hot tub and run. What had he gotten himself into? But more than half of him wanted to ask nicely.
He asked, nicely.
They got out of the tub then and toweled themselves dry while they climbed the stairs to the boys’ bedroom. It was better than River had ever dared to dream. They rested, sated, for ten minutes. River again asked nicely and again lost himself in the wonders of Jeremy’s silken body. It amazed him that they could both achieve such intense fountains of delight from one imperious little bone.
I write in order to be read, and I hunger for feedback - negative, positive, or indifferent. Please share your thoughts on this story in a review, a comment or send me a personal message. I will reply.
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