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Do You Ship Us? - 23. Sleep Over?

"Thanks, this looks awesome. It’s been forever since I’ve had a home cooked meal by someone’s mum.” Jasper grins at Jules and then at Ryan who is sitting beside him and smiles back sweetly.

“Mum, Jasper might be around a bit more.” Ryan’s mum smiles at her son then at Jasper. “We’re dating.” Ryan tells her with a confident smile and Jasper was shocked at how casually he'd said it, there was no big speech, no big deal made out of it at all. It felt so normal, so much so that Jasper finds himself feeling extremely comforted by the lack of importance placed on what that meant for their sexuality. The idea of dating Ryan felt like such a huge deal, it meant confirming he liked guys, or at least that he liked this particular one a hell of a lot. To come out was one thing, but to actually have a boyfriend? Terrifying. Hearing Ryan announce it like it wasn't even important news, made him feel like it wasn't.

“I thought I was picking up a vibe since that award show.” She smiles back at them. It didn't matter to Ryan or his mum, that he was dating a guy, so likewise, it shouldn't matter to anyone else. Jasper knew it would, but in this house, with Ryan's mum as least, it didn't matter at all what that meant. They weren't two guys dating, they were just two people. It must be nice for Ryan to have that comfort, because it was nice for Jasper to have a taste of it, to finally have someone else in their corner.

“Well we've only made it officially quite recently." Ryan replies and Jasper tries not to blush, thinking of being pressed against the wall under the heat of Ryan's lips in the next room. "But yes, there have been feelings building for a while."

“I always know when there’s someone on your mind, and the time it took you to get ready that night, I knew it wasn’t just fans you were wanting to look good to impress.” Jules teases and winks at Jasper who just laughs to himself. It was a relief to know he wasn't the only one that had spent way too much time looking at himself, hoping Ryan would find him attractive enough to kiss, and he was still grateful that Ryan had.

Dinner went smoothly, Jasper certainly felt like he fit in and was making a good impression on both of them. Compared to every dinner at Beth's house, Jasper felt completely at home here. Jules was easy to talk with, asking about how Jasper liked being in the band and what he enjoyed about being in the spotlight. She brings up Jasper taking care of Ryan when he had heatstroke and also how Jasper had helped cover up for Ryan's singing at the mini show back when he'd only just joined the band, obviously, things Ryan had talked about with her. To his horror, she also brings up the interview from the other day, where Jasper had been flirting with Blake and Ryan both, leading to Jasper feeling like he had to explain himself but she quickly assures him that she had thought it was funny to see the way Jasper acted with his friend. She asks if Blake knew about him but only offers 'well if he's as good of a friend as he seems, I'm sure he won't feel any differently when you tell him.' The whole time they are eating, Ryan had one of his hands under the table, resting on Jasper's leg, which Jules surely knew but she didn't seem uncomfortable at all. After dinner is finished, Ryan excuses himself to go and take a shower, leaving Jasper with his mum and that gave her the chance to ask a serious question.

“So Jasper, what is it that you like about Ryan?” Jules asks as she's washing dishes, Jasper politely drying and putting things away as best he can.

“Uh, so much. I can’t really work out what in particular first attracted me but getting to know him has been absolutely wonderful and I’m just so impressed by everything he does and the strength he has.” Jules nods as she listens but Jasper could tell she wasn’t completely convinced, her expression was serious. It wasn't a question he had thought about himself, he had just been interested and then become addicted to kissing him, obviously not the words he could say to the mother of his boyfriend.

“Obviously you have been told about what he’s gone through. Ryan did say he had decided to tell you and that you have been supportive of him, I appreciate that. I just want you to know that my son is extremely important to me and I will protect him as much as I can, against anyone that I think isn’t going to be good for him. I stood back and tried to just be a voice of reason last time and I watched him get so, so hurt. I would never allow him to be hurt like that again. He likes to see and believe the best in people, but he often overlooks the things that hurt him for the sake of the good. I want him to be happy.” Jules sighs, shaking her head and finishes washing the dishes for a moment to fully turn her attention to Jasper. “This isn’t directed at you, in anyway, because I see you are making him happy. But, don’t take advantage of the good in him.”

“Trust me, I’m trying just as hard to make sure people in my circle don’t walk all over him, I’ve been standing up to Chris on the way he is treating him and the one time he called me needing my support I ran to take care of him. I think so highly of him, I honestly never want anyone to hurt him either.” Jasper tells her, she knew he wasn't just saying it too, she'd been watching Ryan's performances and interviews and seen Jasper have his back every time. Still, hearing him say it meant a lot. It earned an emotion filled smile from her as she walks over to Jasper and hugs him tight, her shoulders shaking a little as she holds back the urge to cry into his shoulder.

“I should let you get back to him.” Jules says as she pulls away, she places a hand on his cheek and looks into his eyes. “Thank you.” She whispers and takes a deep breath, stepping away from Jasper and wiping tears from her eyes.

"Thank you for welcoming me into your home and your son's life." Jasper smiles and dries the last dish but Jules is quick to shoo him off, not wanting to take up any more of Jasper's time. He finds Ryan's bedroom upstairs beside the bathroom where he could hear the shower still running. As he walks into Ryan’s bedroom he has a grin on his face, he felt sneaky being in his room, even though he knew he was allowed to be there. The first thing he notices, is a note book with the majority of the pages torn out, he knew he should probably not open it and read it but he was intrigued and once he flips it open and sees his name on the page, he couldn’t ignore the temptation.

“Jasper said the kiss was a mistake, which makes me feel like he was just using me to explore his sexuality. I don’t want to let him in because I promised myself I wouldn’t fall for someone who’s just messing with me and using me again. I have tried so hard to forget about Damien but the moment Jasper said ‘mistake’ I just felt like I was back in that relationship again and could feel all the pain that he’d put me through coming back. I felt weak for not learning from those mistakes, and allowing myself to be treated that way again.” Jasper finishes the page before Ryan could snatch the diary away from him, Jasper hadn't even heard Ryan come into the room. “Guessing Damien is the ex your mum hated?”

“I don’t want to talk about it.” Ryan mutters, throwing his journal in the bedside drawer annoyed.

“That bad?” Jasper crosses his arms. “And you compared me to him? Rude.” Jasper comments lightheartedly, he didn’t feel that worried about what Ryan had written, it was a shitty thing for him to have said and whatever Damien did that was so bad had obviously been what annoyed Ryan most, Jasper had just made a comment that brought back painful memories.

“Um, you reading my journal is where we can start if we want to talk about rude.” Ryan tells him with a scoff, clearly this wound made him defensive too.

“That’s fair, and I’m sorry. Who keeps a diary these days anyway? I thought maybe it was where you planned songs like I write song ideas in my note book.” Jasper shrugs, he did feel awful for violating Ryan's privacy like this but wanted Ryan to know he hadn't done it purposefully. Should he have looked? No. But had he opened it to read all of Ryan's thoughts and secrets? No.

“Keeping a journal was something my mental health supporter suggested when I started having panic attacks. If I write out how I feel when I’m feeling an attack coming on, I can rationalize my feelings and sometimes calm myself down before I lose control.” Ryan answers bluntly, another layer of guilt added to Jasper at the thought that Ryan was having a panic attack as he wrote this, and all because Jasper had said the wrong thing. “And for the record, I’ve been in your room without you and noticed your note book but never assumed it would be ok for me to read.”

“I just noticed you’d ripped out all the pages before that one, why am I the only page in your journal?” Jasper asks, walking over to Ryan slowly.

“Because I tore the rest out a while ago and since meeting you that night was the first one I felt the need to write my feelings for. It was meant to be private and you had hurt me with your comment about kissing me being a mistake. I’m not going to defend the way I had felt at that time." Ryan shrugs, not looking at Jasper.

“Ok but, kissing you the first time wasn’t planned. Mistake is not the right word for it, because I didn’t regret doing it at the time and I don’t now, but it definitely was not what I expected was going to happen, it wasn’t intentional. It did make me realize my sexuality but every kiss since that night has been because I want to explore my feelings for you, not just guys in general. If I wanted to explore my sexuality I’d go to a gay club or something.” Jasper tells him sweetly but the last statement brings a smirk to Ryan’s lips.

“You’d get eaten alive in a gay club.” He laughs at the thought and licks his lips. “Cute twink like you, out ‘exploring’ is how you get into a lot of trouble. That’s a lot of guys fantasies when they go out.” He winks at Jasper who just frowns at him confused.

“I was trying to make a cute point about liking you and only wanting to kiss you. I would hate for you to genuinely think I am using you and if that’s how I’ve made you feel, I am sorry.” Jasper reaches out to hold Ryan’s hands, looking into his eyes deeply.

“It’s ok, you’re not to blame for the way I doubt myself.” Ryan shrugs, clearly it was a sore point to him so Jasper decides not to ask any more about it. He had worked out Damien was some really bad person in his life that’d put doubt in Ryan’s head and used him, leaving him with some trust issues and emotional scars. So bad that every memory of him was ripped from the journal.

“What’s a 'twink'?” Jasper asks, and the mood changes immediately back to a cheeky one, Ryan has a devious smile on his face as he grabs his phone.

“See naivety like that is what makes you an easy target.” He states, passing Jasper his phone with a meaning of the word from urban dictionary on the screen. Jasper reads it amused then passes the phone back.

“Ok, I’m going to choose to not be offended that this description attributes ‘twinks’ to being a bit stupid. Other than that though, how am I such a stereotype?” He asks, glancing at himself in the full length mirror beside Ryan’s bed.

“Not stupid, just, like I said, a bit naiive.” Ryan laughs, stepping behind Jasper and putting his arms around his waist.

“I’ve gone from being an emotionally detached straight boyfriend, to a gay 'twink' in like, a week. Surprised I am not having a complete identity crisis yet at this rate.” Jasper jokes sounding a little like he was actually just about to do just that.

“To a gay, 'twink' boyfriend.” Ryan reminds him in a whisper against Jasper's ear, his breath on Jasper's neck making him shiver a little. Jasper just smiles and rolls his eyes then turns around in Ryan's arms. “Don’t change, I’m really starting to like who I am getting to know.” Ryan tells him with a smile.

“Except when you say it like that I sound like a real bed-hopper, since it really hasn’t been long since I ended things with Beth and I’m already dating you.” Jasper sighs, things had seemed to happen so quickly between them, and that was with trying to resist for a commendable amount of time. “Although I never actually hopped in her bed.” He shrugs, looking from Ryan to his bed.

“You haven’t hopped in mine yet either. Though I was thinking you might stay here the night with me?” Ryan suggests with a hopeful smile.

“First time we’re going to share a bed is at your mum’s house. God, you're really just so casual about all this while your mum is around.” Jasper smiles, not sure he was comfortable with the idea himself.

"It's not like we're teenagers, my mum isn't going to come up and bust us doing anything we shouldn't be. Besides, we aren't there. It's just sharing a bed, it's not anything else." Ryan laughs at Jasper's nervous reaction.

"Speaking of being teenagers." Jasper deflects as his eyes find the few photos displayed around his room. Ryan lets him go over to get a closer look. There was one of Ryan and his mum at graduation and prom that Jasper was drawn to. Ryan smiles to himself as Jasper stares at it, again thinking that perhaps it was the way Ryan was dressed in a suit, Jasper had mentioned a few times how attractive that looks was to him. Jasper was jealous to see that puberty had made Ryan so masculine before he finished school, he himself still looked like a 13 year old when he graduated, even now his petite body was lacking the mature masculine build especially compared to the body shape Ryan already had at 18. “You must have been popular in school.” Jasper turns his attention back over to Ryan who was pulling his shirt off and neatening the sheets on the bed.

“Not really.” Ryan answers, nonchalantly.

“Whatever, I had guys like you at my school and they were always in and out of relationships, dating their way through the grade.” Jasper walks over to the end of the bed, wondering if he was really ready to share a bed with Ryan already.

“Well, I wasn’t interested in dating in school, I was too focused on grades. I often got asked to tutor people, but it was all just people wanting to come over for 2 minutes of Math's and 28 minutes of something else.” Ryan lies down on his bed, patting it for Jasper to join him.

“Oh really?” Jasper asks sarcastically. “How long did it take for you to realize that?” He asks, joining Ryan on the bed.

“Until one of the girls had me over her house trying to convince me to lay on her bed to tutor her, which I refused because I wasn't comfortable with it. Next day at school she had started a rumor that we hooked up, even though nothing had happened. By the end of the day I had 4 or 5 other girls asking me to tutor them.” Ryan shrugs, reaching out for Jasper and holding his hand

“And you said I was naiive.” Jasper teases playfully, poking his tongue out at Ryan who felt extremely tempted to lean over and take his cheeky tongue between his teeth gently, but he resists.

“You can't sleep in that." Ryan changed the topic. Jasper looks down at his clothes, not a single item comfortable for bed.

"Are you just saying that to get me out of my pants?" Jasper asks with a nervous smile.

"I promise I'm not going to do anything, I just want you to be comfortable. I'll even turn the light off, if you're too shy." Ryan states, getting out of the bed and walking across the room. He flicks the light off and can hear shifting in the bed. He heads back over to lie down, waiting until Jasper stops moving before he dares to move closer. "Roll over, if you're in my bed you're getting spooned." Ryan tells him.

“Didn’t realize cuddling was a condition with you.” Jasper rolls over facing away from Ryan and feeling the warmth of Ryan’s body fitting so comfortably against his, for a moment Jasper feels completely vulnerable, like things could so easily escalate and even though he'd promised he wouldn't, Ryan could change his mind, but he's reassured when Ryan's hand runs along his arm to hold his hand, not traveling anywhere else.

“Look I don’t make the rules, I just enforce them.” Ryan’s breath tickles the back of his neck, making him shudder and laugh. “Sensitive?” Ryan asks, blowing against Jasper’s neck again to get the reaction out of him.

“Stop.” Jasper laughs and arches his back. Ryan holds him tight so he couldn’t squirm.

“Oh, I could torture you so easily.” Ryan whisper's sexily, smirking as he lightly kisses the back of Jasper’s neck. “Are you ticklish?” He asks and Jasper frantically tries to wriggle away from him in a panic, sharing the bed with Ryan had been a terrible mistake because if he dared tickle him one of them was going to end up dead.

“Don’t you dare.” Jasper warns.

“Relax, I do just want to sleep. Come on.” Ryan places his hand behind Jasper’s neck and draws him in for a soft, gentle kiss. Jasper whines slights when their lips part. "What?" Ryan smiles. Jasper shakes his head. "I don't know if anyone has ever told you this, but in a relationship, you have to learn to talk to each other and express what you are feeling and want." Ryan says in a fake whisper.

"I know you just said you only want to sleep, but I want more of that." Jasper admits, surprising Ryan who hadn't expected Jasper to actually openly tell him what he wanted and was very impressed.

"Oh really?" Ryan smiles to himself.

"Oh, yeah, really, really." Jasper nods, not waiting for Ryan to make the move. He presses his lips to Ryan's again and enjoys the tenderness of it but all he could think of was the kiss they shared on the beach, the passion and intensity of it. They hadn't kissed like that since and he wanted it more than anything.

"I don't want to rush things with you." Ryan warns, moving his head slightly back before Jasper can kiss him again, not sure exactly how far Jasper was hoping things would go.

"Honestly I just want your tongue in my mouth, nothing more." Jasper says so bluntly Ryan gulps. Granted, the clearly defined expectations made this desire easy to fulfill so he was glad to not have to be guessing what Jasper wanted, and he did kinda love that Jasper had the confidence to ask for it, but was shy about just initiating the kiss himself. Ryan kisses his lips softly, then again, the third kiss he gently sweeps his tongue against Jasper's lips and smiles at how quickly and eagerly Jasper parts his lips. The moment his tongue touches Jasper's he can tell this boyfriend of his is going to be trouble in all the best ways.

Claire Rosalind
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Sweet chapter. Jasper may be a youngish-looking twink who still lacks mature masculine definition, but he has a good heart and a good brain, and Ryan makes clear that their liking is mutual. I love that the chapter ends with a gentle kiss and a cuddle.

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This was a cute chapter! Jasper was wrong to read Ryan's diary, but he wasn't malicious about it. It's nice to see them talk about their feelings so openly and tell each other exactly what they want in a relationship. 

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