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    Duncan Ryder
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
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Everybody's Wounded - 11. Chapter 11

I don’t know what I expected from Luc when I agreed to have dinner with him that evening. That he would be nervous, I suppose, as he always seemed to be with me. Wary. Maybe even a little frightened. But I was determined to get us past that. I’d resolved to take Brandon’s advice and pull back a bit, focus on being friends before exploring anything else that might be between us. I wasn’t going to mention Josh – I didn’t know what to say about Josh – but I was going to tell him that we needed to put a little space between us – a space where maybe our friendship could grow.

I was going to explain that, if we did decide we wanted to move in the direction of building a relationship, I needed him to trust me. I needed to understand the pain that was eating at him. I needed to be with him, helping him to work past it, whatever it was.

Those were my good intentions.

They say the road to hell is paved with them.

Sometimes they know what they’re talking about.


There was something different about Luc that night. He was calmer somehow. Relaxed, in a way he’d never seemed with me before. And…newly confidant. As he drove from my place to his, he kept glancing over at me, and this sweet little smile would play across his lips. In the elevator on the way up to his condo, he stroked my hand with the tips of his fingers. For once I could sense no confusion, no underlying anxiety. If anything, I was the one feeling anxious and confused.

Once we got inside his place, he rested his hands on my shoulders, tilted his head up and kissed me, in the French fashion, on both cheeks. I shivered, as if there were little charges of electricity where his lips touched my skin, where his fingers rested on my jacket. I tried to smile, to say something cool, nonchalant.

Then he kissed my mouth with startling tenderness, and whatever it was I was about to say just flew out of my head and I couldn’t’ say anything at all.

His mouth curved into that soft, sweet smile and it lent a kind radiance to the fine bones of his face. The black curls fell wildly over his forehead, into his eyes. Wordlessly I reached up and brushed them back. He took my hand in his and pressed his mouth to my palm.

Somehow, suddenly, it was that first night again, but we had traded places. Now he seemed so calm, so sure, and I was the uncertain one. I closed my eyes and thought, “There should be fog. There should be that golden, hazy light. He should be touching his mouth to mine, softly, softly…”

But he released my hand, and after a few seconds, I opened my eyes. There was no fog. No golden, hazy light. Just Luc’s thoughtful face, and his mouth that was curved into this soft smile.

“Thank you for coming,” he said, quite formally. And he undid my coat and slipped it off my shoulders.

All I could think of as he hung our jackets in the cupboard was the feel of his mouth, on my cheek, my mouth, the palm of my hand. It was all I could do not to run my tongue over my lips, seeking out the taste of him.

“I put one of those frozen lasagnes in the oven,” he said as he led me into to the living room. “It will be ready in about half an hour.”

He left me to go check something in the kitchen, and I went and stood at the window, looking out at the wide expanse of deserted beach and at the ocean, barely visible beyond. Dusk was already heavy, and there was my fog, rolling in off the ocean.

Behind me, I heard Luc come back into the room, and the sound of a cabinet opening. I kept my eyes on the water. Then I heard a few quiet guitar chords and a guy singing in French, something soft and melodic but unfamiliar. As the words and music filled the room, I raised and pressed my right forearm to the glass, and rested my forehead against the back of my wrist.

Luc came up behind me, placed his hands lightly on my hips and rested his chin on my right shoulder.

“So dark and gloomy,” he said, and laughed softly. “Funny. I wasn’t expecting that. I’ve spent every summer here since I was a boy, but I’ve never been here in winter before. I didn’t realize how the fog would get to me. I’ve always thought of this as a sun-filled place.”

I said nothing. I’m a big city boy; the wide expanse of sand and rock and water is exotic to me. And I liked the fog, the way it rolled in at dusk, blotting out the ocean. It soothed me, somehow.

Luc reached his arms around my waist and pressed against my back, hugging me tightly from behind. He is a few inches shorter than me, and very slender, with narrow shoulders and long, long legs. The difference in our height is in our torsos; our legs are the same length, and while his cheek just rested on my shoulder, the front of his thighs lay against the back of mine, and his cock was at just the height for him to press against my ass. He pressed it, hard and certain, and I wondered where this new confidence had come from. I closed my eyes, and moved my forehead from my arm to the cold window glass.

“Thank you for coming,” he said again, his mouth just below my ear. “I am so, so sorry about…about what happened. Forgive me?”

I turned my head slightly, and he rubbed his cheek against my jaw. Luc is dark haired, pale skinned, and his beard is fairly heavy; its shadow made a faint rough rasp against my skin that was almost unbearably erotic.

Forgive him? There was nothing to forgive. “Luc --. ”

“Oui?” He ran his thumb along my mouth and sighed. “I did much thinking this weekend in Montreal,” he said softly. “Mostly, I thought about you. About this.” He slid his thumb into my mouth and out again.

And I got hard.

Below me, on the deserted beach, a solitary figure came into view, shoulders hunched against the wind. I watched for a moment as Luc nuzzled against my neck, then leaned in and kissed me, just below my ear. My warm breath came harder, faster, fogging the glass, turning the figure’s progress hazy and slow.

Then, to my surprise, Luc moved his hands down, slowly, firmly, until they were pressed against my cock, and his fingers closed around it through my jeans. It felt so incredibly good. I sucked in a hard breath.

I closed my eyes again, forcing myself to stay perfectly still, to keep my breathing calm, in and out. It was the first time he’d touched me so intimately and I had been so very careful not to touch him. Now here he was, reaching for me, holding me –

I trembled with suppressed desire. My body wanted this, wanted to thrust into his hand, wanted to turn to him, press against him, wanted to strip him, take him, take him…

But I was not so sure of my heart. The physical wanting was so intense it hurt, but I was afraid. Afraid to reach for him, afraid to touch him.

I wasn’t afraid of him. I was afraid for him.

Because something in me did not trust his touch.

It seemed like every tiny step in whatever this craziness was between us led him only to fear and pain, and then to regret and to rejection. I wasn’t sure how much more of it I could take. If I gave in to this, could I bear it if he rejected me again?

I wanted…to be wanted. The way Josh had wanted me. Josh. Fuck –.

“Are you sure about this?” I asked him finally, still staring out the window into the gathering gloom. “I mean – I don’t understand what’s been happening until now. I think maybe you need some time.”

“I’ve taken time,” he said.

I swallowed hard, trying to gather together what was left of my good intentions. “Maybe I need some time too.”

“Do you?”

“Maybe. Luc – you’ve been tearing me apart, man. I don’t know --.”

“I know,” he said, and he kissed my neck again. “And I’m so very sorry. But it doesn’t matter now.”

But it did matter. It mattered to me. I didn’t think I could take another encounter like our last, the pleasure and then the pain. Holding him while he wept. His helplessness. I couldn’t do that to him again. I couldn’t bear it.

“But Luc, I don’t understand. And I – I think I need to. Understand. I know you’re hurting but I don’t know why. And,” I took a deep breath, and just said it. “And I don’t know if I can do this again. I don’t know if I can have you in my arms, then have you run from me. I just don’t think I can do it. Whatever it is—you need to get past it, and I don’t know how to help you do that if you don’t let me understand.”

He was silent for a moment. His forehead was resting on my shoulder, his chest was pressed warm and firm against my back, and his cock hard against my ass. And his hands were still pressed against the front of my jeans, holding me, hard and trembling, through the denim.

Then he sighed, and began to speak softly. “It’s not a good story, Scott. But it happened a long time ago. It’s over now.”

He didn’t say anything for a while, and I continued to watch the ocean disappear into the fog. The guy on the beach – he was close enough now that even in the gathering gloom I could tell it was a guy -- had moved much closer. There was something about his progress that fascinated me, a familiarity in the stride, in the line of the shoulder. I pressed my forehead harder against the coldness of the glass.

“There was a boy,” Luc said finally, his voice hardly more than a whisper. “I thought he loved me. He hurt me very badly. Then he was hurt very badly. It was, as I say, a long time ago.”

I watched the guy on the beach, very aware of Luc’s breath warm and damp through my shirt, his body warm and hard against my back. There had to be more to it than that. There had to be.

“How did he hurt you? What did he do? I don’t want to do anything –.”

“Shhh,” he said. “It was the remembering that hurt. I fought it for a long, long time. Now it’s time to be free of it. I do know you could never hurt me that way. Not you.”

He kissed my neck again.

“Can’t you tell me?”

“No,” he said, and there was calmness, and real strength in his voice. “I’ve already told you the important part. The rest is just details, and they don’t matter.”

He gave my cock a little squeeze, and then he pulled his hands away, rested them on my thigh. He licked my ear lobe, drew it into his mouth, chewed gently. I actually whimpered.

The heat of his breath made me tremble and I leaned back until I felt the length of him along my spine, my ass. My good intentions began to fade into a different kind of hazy fog.

Down on the beach, the guy had reached the private, gated expanse in front of the condo. While Luc breathed into my ear, ran his tongue along my neck, made me shiver and shake, I watched him turn away from the water and head towards it, pausing to unlock the gate to the private grounds. As he drew nearer, he stepped into the security lights that led up the pathway. His head was bowed against the wind, his shoulders slumped, and his gloveless hand clutched at the red scarf wound around his neck.

Suddenly there were tears at the back of my throat, and with a sob I turned towards Luc and pulled him into me, burying my tongue in his mouth. He held me close and took me in.

I don’t know what I was thinking. Maybe I wasn’t thinking. Part of me was down there in the fog, but most of me…

Most of me was there with Luc in my arms and it felt like a small miracle. He seemed somehow to have cast aside the fear that had always been between us and stood pressed against me, so sure and willing. I wrapped my arms around him and pulled him close, and as I did, I was suddenly and intensely aware of the size and strength of my body against his slenderness.

He may have put aside his fear somehow, but I knew that I could not forget it. Even as my tongue explored the exquisite warmth of his mouth, his emotional fragility called out to every protective instinct I had.

His mouth tasted so sweet. His arms clung to me so trustingly. And his cock. His cock, grinding against mine, was insistent, and so very, very hard.

I’d wanted this for weeks – not my fulfillment, but his. I’d imagined a hundred times how I would make everything good for him, slow and sweet and… magic… if only he would let me…

And now, it seemed, he would let me…

So why wasn’t I joyous? Why, now that he stood, real and wanting in my arms, was there a part of me that doubted, that wanted to step back? Why was there a part of me that seemed to be calling out to the man who had just passed below me in the fog?

How had my life become so fucking complicated?

I took a deep breath and tried to tell myself that I should listen to Brandon.

“Step away now,” I told myself. “Give yourself some space to think, time to understand what you want, because frankly, you don’t have a fucking idea how you feel.”

God knows, it was true. Even as we stood there, perched above the fog and the ocean, our mouths exploring one another, I had no fucking idea. I mean, I knew what I wanted to be able to give to Luc – but I also knew that I really didn’t understand what I wanted for myself. My confusion about Josh pressed between my body and Luc’s, just as my confusion about Luc had lain between Josh and me in the passion we had shared in Josh’s bed.

For an instant, I almost had the strength to step away. Then Luc’s dropped his hands to my hips and pulled my hardness against his.

“Please,” he said against my lips. The yearning in his voice as he uttered that single word combined with the sweetness and desire of his mouth to hold me fast. My heart lurched, and everything Brandon had said seemed to tumble away.

I groaned – in desire, in confusion, fuck, almost in despair. As much as I knew I should step away, I couldn’t do it. I held not only the man, but his trust in my hands. What would it do to his fragile confidence if I turned him away now? I wanted to step back and think – but even more I wanted to draw closer, and lose myself in the touch of him.

And what about Josh?

Truth is, I didn’t know what I wanted – but for once Luc, pressing his body wildly against mine, seemed to know exactly.

Suddenly, he released my lips and stepped back.

“Écoute,” he said. Listen.

I opened my eyes, puzzled.

“Les mots,” he said. The words. “Écoute.”

Until then, I hadn’t really been paying attention to the music he’d chosen, beyond registering that it was some male French folk singer, not the jazz that he’d played for me last time I was here. The guy had a soft, sweet, melodic voice, and was accompanied mostly by guitar, occasionally by a female backup singer. It was not familiar to me.

“Tu comprends?” he asked. You understand?

I concentrated, aware that he was studying me with those intense, pale blue Siberian eyes. After a few seconds, I nodded slowly. I’d studied French throughout school, and while my spoken mastery of the language left something to be desired, I understood it fairly well. And the song was easy to make out. The singer’s voice was clear and soft, the French beautifully enunciated, easy for someone not a native speaker.

Later, after Luc had given me a gift of music, this song would be among the many he would want me to know. I would google the lyrics, and the words would bring tears for very different reasons, but right then, in that moment, it was the chorus that he wanted me to have. To make sure I understood, he took my face in his hands and sang the words to me along with singer, looking right into my eyes.

Viens, je suis là,
Je n'attends que toi.
Tout est possible,

Tout est permis.
(Paroles et musique : Georges Moustaki
© Manèges)

Come, I am here,
I wait only for you
Everything is possible
Everything is permitted.

Then he caressed my cheek, smiling at me with a tenderness that made my breath catch.

“Tout,” he whispered. Everything.

And it was more than a declaration. It was a plea. How could I step away?

I closed my eyes, breathing in ragged gasps as his fingers caressed my face, fighting for something like control. Somewhere in the back of my mind I remembered what Josh had said – that if I was falling in love with Luc, it was for all the wrong reasons.

And then, I couldn’t help it, I thought of Josh, of his face when I went into him, of his tortured declaration of love.

But here, now, with this gentle hand on my cheek, this single word whispered against my mouth…

I wrapped my hands around his wrists and opened my eyes, staring down into his face, so thin and intense, with its high cheekbones, long, narrow nose, and those incredible eyes. Black curls tumbled onto his forehead, over his collar. His mouth, wide and finely drawn, trembled, and he drew his lower lip between his teeth.

“Please,” he said.

“Are you sure?” I asked, my voice barely a whisper. “Because if you’re not –.”

He put his hand over my mouth and nodded. “I am sure,” he said.

His eyes smouldered with desire. And trust.

And that’s all I have to cling to, to justify what I did, what we did together, that evening, as dusk fell, as music played. The fact that he was sure.

And maybe it’s just self-justification.

“Ok,” I whispered, tasting his mouth again. “If you’re sure it’s what you want.”

And I let him lead me down the hall and into his bedroom.

As soon as we entered his room, I realized that this was no sudden impulse. It was a seduction. Luc had invited me here to make love. He’d chosen that song to tell me what he wanted. Just as he’d chosen candles, a dozen unlit pillars of beeswax that were carefully positioned around the room. While I watched, he lit them slowly, one by one. Then he returned to me and slipped back into my arms.

“I want … to see you,” he said shyly.

I smiled, kissed his forehead, his nose, his chin, and then just held him, waiting to see what he would do. When he just stood, still in my arms, I began to undress him very slowly, carefully. The candles burned soft and sweet, luminous honey-scented guideposts to mystery and wonder.

He stood very still as I opened the buttons of his shirt, hardly breathing when I slipped it off his shoulders. Underneath he wore a long sleeved T, and he held his breath as I slid my hands up underneath it. His skin seemed to burn. When my fingertips grazing the soft hair of his stomach, I felt him shudder. When I let my finger dip into his navel, he gasped.

Then I pulled the shirt up, over his head, and in the instant when his hands were still caught fast in the arms of his clothing, I bent down and grazed his nipples with my tongue. He gave a strangled cry that made me smile.

I raised my head again and studied him as he stood there, watching me, his upper body naked in the candle light, his jeans riding low on narrow hips. He was so beautiful to me, pale and slender, with a light dusting of fine, dark hair around his nipples, across his chest and over his belly, and a more decided line that led down from his navel, down to where I knew I would find him, hard and waiting.

I felt my breath catch in my throat.

“So beautiful,” I whispered, running my hands over his naked chest, thrilling to the way my touch made him tremble.

There was a birthmark on his right side, a port wine stain shaped a little like a seagull in flight that stretched up over his ribs to just beneath his nipple. Against the paleness of his skin it seemed to shimmer like a living shadow in the candlelight. I bent and licked it, slowly, from the bottom of his rib cage up to his nipple, until the skin was all wet and glistening. Then I blew gently where my tongue had been, and I could feel his trembling increase. He reached out a hand to my arm, steadying himself.

I raised my head for a second, studied his face. “Ok?” I asked.

“God, yes,” he replied, and I wanted to laugh. But I just bent my head and once again rubbed my tongue over his nipple. It was small and dark, and tightened like a berry beneath my mouth. First I licked at it, gently, then much harder. Then I took it between my teeth, biting softly, flicking the little nub with my tongue until he cried out my name in a strangled gasp.

I released it and stood up, pulling him against me for a moment until he quieted. Then I took his hands between mine and raised them to my mouth and kissed them.

“Your turn,” I said softly, guiding his hands to the bottom of the old rugby jersey I was wearing. “Take it off me.”

His hands were trembling as he raised it up, and I grabbed the bottom of my t-shirt as well, and helped him get them both over my head.

I’m a big guy. 225 on a tall, big-boned frame, all of it pretty finely tuned. I don’t think a whole lot about it. I mean, I grew up huge for my age, and I’ve always done a ton of sports, so this is just me and I’m comfortable in my skin. David always told me how hot he thought I was, and I was glad, but I truly didn’t think about it much. But standing there with Luc, watching his face as he took in my naked chest, was really… different. I mean, the way his eyes widened, and his lips parted, and his breath kind of caught in his throat as he looked at me… It was like… I don’t know. It was like I could see him seeing in me, well, the kind of beauty I see in him. Fuck – whatever. It just made me feel amazing.

I took his hands again, and placed them palm down on my chest.

“You can touch,” I told him, moving his hands over my chest. “Please.”

And he touched, his right hand lightly teasing my nipple as I had done to him, his left trailing down my chest, over my belly, whispering through the hairs that glowed golden in the candlelight. All my muscles tightened, and I heard myself groan. He stared at me, his eyes widening, and pulled his hand away. I caught it again, and raised it to my lips.

“Keep touching,” I whispered, and I took his left hand in mine, pressing it once again to my naked belly. “Don’t stop touching.”

And as his fingers lingered there, I undid my jeans and then reached for the waistband of his, unfastening them, then lowering them and the boxers he wore beneath them down over his hips. I pushed him gently backwards and onto the bed before I pulled the rest of my own clothes off and lay down beside him.

Luc’s cock was like him, long and narrow and so very beautiful. It rose, brave and hard from its nest of soft black hair. At first, remembering what had happened last time, I was a little scared to reach for him, so I didn’t right away. I just trailed my fingers close, over his thigh, across his lower belly, testing his readiness. He seemed ok, breathing heavily, making wonderful little sounds in the back of his throat, and crazy good little circles down my belly, teasing my treasure trail, venturing into the top of my pubes. Finally, when it seemed certain that he would be good with it, I reached for his cock, and wrapped my fingers gently around it.

God, I love the touch of cock in my hand. I love the smoothness of it, and the softness of the skin stretched so delicately over the hardness underneath. I especially love the way it seems so alive, like a separate being, throbbing with every heartbeat.

I ran my fingers along his hardness, thumb on top, fingertips underneath, from the base to just below its throbbing head, delighting in his shiver of response. He stared wide-eyed into my face, and his hands continued to caress me, his right hand on my chest, his left hand inching lower, one moment dipping into my navel, the next grazing the top of my pubes. I was so hard that my cock was practically parallel to my stomach, and with each exhaled breath it grazed the back of his hand. I wanted to give him time, but it was so crazy good.

“Keep touching me,” I said. “Please. Take me in your hand.”

He did, and though his hand was timid, maybe because his hand was timid, it was all I could do not to explode.

“Yes,” I groaned, kissing his neck, sucking gently.

The taste of his skin was amazing. He cried out and arched against me, and I sucked harder, knowing I was marking him, knowing from his response that he was loving it.

All the while I kept stroked him with one hand, and then I closed the other over the hand he had wrapped around my cock, and I guided it up and down, slow and easy, soft magic strokes, matching my hand on him.

“Like that,” I groaned. “Like that.”

His touch grew braver, more certain.

“Yes,” I breathed into his ear. “Christ, yes. Just like that.”

We came within a few strokes of one another, long, forceful spurts that coated our chests and bellies.

Afterwards, we held each other for a long time. He seemed truly content in my arms.

I was happy for him – but I also felt a sadness that I could not explain. I told myself it was only the sadness you sometimes feel after making love. I think the French have a word for it, they always seem to have a word for such things, but I don’t remember what it is.


Much later, we wolfed down enormous quantities of overcooked lasagne and salad. He asked me to stay, but I didn’t want to. I needed to be alone for awhile. I told him I had to be up really early to be at the gym (which was true), and he didn’t press; he just offered to drive me home.

“Just a minute,” he said, as we were about to leave. “There’s something I want you to have.”

He dashed back into his bedroom, and emerged with a large paper back book which he thrust into my hands. I stared down at it in surprise.

It was a well thumbed copy of the Collected Poems of Federica Garcia Lorca, the bilingual edition with the Spanish text and English translation on facing pages. There were yellow post it notes sticking out of it everywhere.

“I told you, I knew,” he said, and that soft little smile played around his mouth again.

I knew instantly what he meant. Take this Waltz. The Leonard Cohen song he was listening to on his Ipod that day in the library, the very first day we talked. Our song, I guess, in a funny sort of way.

“I’ve marked all the important ones for you,” he said. “The ones that mean something to me. Like The Little Viennese Waltz.”

It was an incredibly personal gift. “I can’t take this,” I said, but he stopped me by leaning over and kissing my mouth softly.

“But you must,” he said. “Besides, I have another copy. A brand new one.” Then he laughed. “I bought it for you, actually, but then I decided to keep that one because I wanted you to have this one. I have found a lot of comfort, a lot of understanding, in these poems. I want you to have them.”

He gave me that sweet little smile again. “Maybe, it will help you to understand the things I cannot tell you.”

His voice was calm and soft, but the suddenly strong French cadence gave away the depth of his feelings.


I stood at the foot of the stairs that led up to my residence building and watched Luc’s car pull away into the night, the book clutched in my hand. Physically I felt wonderful, warm and sated and sleepy. I wanted to stretch out like a cat and sleep. Emotionally, however, was a whole other story. Emotionally, I was a bit of a mess.

Rather than go straight up to my room, I decided to walk a bit, to try to clear my head. I found myself walking by Bran’s residence, and decided to see if he was in.

I knocked at his door. At first there was no answer, but I could see the light from beneath the frame, so I pounded harder. Finally, he answered.

“Bran, it’s me. Scott.”

The door opened, and the blonde fireplug stood there in a tight t shirt and jeans. His feet were bare and his hair was mussed. He looked… kind of sweet in a rumpled sort of way. “Hey, man,” he mumbled. “Not a good time –.”

But I was already in the room.

I guess I looked a little shaken up, because he looked at me with some concern.

“What happened to you?” he asked, waving me over to his chair. “You look like shit.”

I slumped down, the book Luc had given me still clutched in my hands. Now that it came down to it, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to tell him.


“Fuck, Bran,” I said, and to tell the truth, what I really felt like doing was crying. Which I hate. “I’m afraid maybe I’ve been thinking with my dick.”

Just then the door to his bathroom opened and a small blond whirlwind popped out. “You think you’ve been thinking with your what?” she demanded.

My jaw maybe hit the floor. “Not a good time,” I muttered under my breath.

Bran was immediately on his feet. “She’s just stopped by to borrow a book,” he said lamely.

Laura stood there, studying one of us, then the other. She looked like she wanted to laugh, but knew she shouldn’t. Neither Bran, nor I said anything else. Finally, she gave a little sigh and crossed the room to me, leaned over and pecked my cheek.

“It looks like some boy bonding is desperately in order,” she said solemnly, somehow managing to look both concerned and amused at the same time.

She picked a book up off Bran’s desk, and planted an identical little kiss on his cheek.

“Thanks for this,” she said, “I’ll see you guys tomorrow.”

And then she was gone.

Brandon had this dazed look on his face that was so totally adorable that, for a few seconds, I actually forgot why I was here.

“She kissed me,” he said.

And I couldn’t help it, I just started to laugh. “Uh, Bran? She kissed both of us, man.”

But he just shook his head. “Not the same thing,” he said.

I laughed louder. “Hey, I was here.” I tapped my cheekbone. “Little peck on the cheek.” Then I reached over and tapped him in the same place. “Little peck on the cheek. Exactly the same thing.”

But he touched his finger gently to his face, and shook his head. “Not the same thing at all,” he said with adorable certainty.

“Uh, Bran?”

He turned and looked at me.

“You’ve got it bad.”

He kind of grinned, and then he laughed. “I guess.”

He turned to his mini fridge, pulled out a couple of beers and tossed me one.

“Scott,” he said seriously. “She really was here just to borrow a book.”

“Right.” I said.

“Really. Physiology. She’s having some knee problems…”

“It’s ok, man. I trust you. Really.”

He sighed with obvious relief. “Ok then.”

We both drank beer for awhile.

“So – what the fuck have you been up to?” he asked finally.

I just grimaced. How was I supposed to explain it to him? I was beginning to regret coming.

He watched me for a minute. When I still didn’t answer, he finally said, “Thinking with your dick,” and he shook his head. “Josh?”

I sighed heavily, then shook my head.

“Oh, fuck, Scott.”

“Yeah,” I said. “It wasn’t my intension, believe me. Luc called me this afternoon. He’d been away for the weekend, and he asked me over to his place for dinner. I wasn’t going to go, but he said he wanted to apologize. About last week.”

“And it was quite the apology?”

I nodded miserably. “He – he seems to have made some decisions when he was away. I don’t know, we didn’t talk about it at all, but he just seemed to have made up his mind, somehow. Maybe he’s ready to come out. He was with his brother, so maybe he told him, I just don’t know. All I know is – he really wanted me to, well, us to… you know.”

“Um, yeah.”

“And, well, we did. Well, kind of. I mean, I didn’t really know how not to –. I mean, I think it was really hard for him to decide, well, you know…”

I felt like an incoherent idiot. Especially with Bran being straight and all… Not that I wanted to give any details anyway, but, well, it made it harder.

But I guess he pretty much got the point, because he just shook his head. “Well, if you did, you did. How do you feel about it? How do you feel about him?”

“I don’t know any more, Bran,” I admitted, to Bran and to myself. “If only this had happened just a couple of days ago… Then nothing would have happened with Josh and… Fuck, I just don’t know.”

Copyright © 2011 Duncan Ryder; All Rights Reserved.
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Scott did let the little head do the thinking which lead to the petite mort, or perhaps more accurately as post-coital tristesse.  He is confused, conflicted and concerned and turned to his friend who asked the important questions.

Interestingly, we still don't know any details of Luc's wound(s).

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