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    Mac Rountree
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Discovering Home - 12. Rhett Redux

 

Joe found exactly the right place for them to spend the night on Johns Island. It was a 1950s cottage court that was still in business. The two men had a cabin to themselves. They unpacked the truck, took a shower, and then went out to eat. Thomas insisted on fried shrimp and named a restaurant that was on his list of favorites. The low country was Thomas’ home turf, and Joe let him revel in being “home.” When they got back to the cottage court, they sat on a picnic table under the pine trees. Their fingers were touching as they sat in silence. Spoken language was not needed as the two men communicated in other ways. After being outside for a while, Thomas chuckled, turned to Joe, and said, “okay, I’m ready.” Joe laughed and said that Thomas didn’t know what he was thinking.

“Of course, I do. And my answer is I am ready, willing, and able. You may need to stifle me so the other visitors don’t think someone is being murdered in Cabin 6. I need it and I need you. Let’s go, Joey-Joe.”

Thomas stood and Joe slapped his ass.

“You know that is mine.”

“Yes, it is. Sir!”

They both burst out in raucous laughter. They sometimes talked the language of rough trade, but they never walked that walk. Their intimacy could sometimes get intense, but it was always undergirded by a deep and abiding love. Thomas leaned down and kissed Joe. “Let’s go. I can feel your body humming. I will be the naked guy lying on the bed. Face down. Ha!” That was a clue to Joe that they both needed the same intense loving making that night.

Thomas was right that he needed a muzzle. No matter how much Joe tried to quieten him, Thomas’ moans drifted through the humid night air. It was late the next morning when they awoke. They had been up most of the night. They were hesitant to step into the world because everyone would know what they had done the night before. Joe went out to the truck, pretending to arrange things in his toolbox. Several people looked at him, so he smiled and waved. They waved back. Then Thomas walked out, and the smiles turned to quizzical looks. Thomas walked up to Joe and kissed him on the lips. That erased all doubts.

“Fucker,” Joe whispered to Thomas. The smile on his face though, let Thomas know it was the perfect thing to do. Joe then grabbed Thomas and gave him a quick kiss. Tit for tat. They both jumped in the truck and headed to a breakfast dive down the road. They both chuckled when they saw the sign out front: “Bob’s Breakfast Barn - Eat and Get the Hell Out.” They needed refueling after their torrid night of lovemaking.

“Okay, what is on the agenda for today?”

“I want to see the family home. I am sure we can’t get inside, but it would be neat to ride by the entrance.”

Joe cranked up the truck and started heading up river. They reached the entrance to the plantation and saw a For Sale sign posted on the fence. Thomas gasped and Joe pulled the truck onto the shoulder of the road.

“Are you okay? Do you want to see the house? I can call the realtor.”

Thomas nodded his head.

Joe pulled out his telephone, turned it on, and noticed that he had missed a call from Algiers. He figured it was work-related and it could wait. He called the realtor and told the man he was interested in looking at the plantation. The realtor agreed to meet them there shortly. Joe pulled through the gates and viewed the fallow fields. They could see the house in the distance when they headed down the oak allee. Thomas sighed in relief as the house looked to be in good shape. They parked the truck and went up to the house and climbed the front steps. They looked through the windows into the downstairs rooms. Nothing looked too untoward, which made Thomas smile. They then wandered around the exterior of the house and looked through the windows of the outbuildings.

“I wonder why it is for sale? And why are the fields fallow?” Joe couldn’t understand why the estate was deserted.

“We can ask the realtor. By the way, what is his name?”

“You won’t believe this, but it is Rhett something or other. It is not Butler but starts with a B. Maybe Barr. That’s it, Rhett Barr.”

Joe saw all of the color drain from Thomas’ face.

“Is there something I should know?”

“No. I haven’t seen him since high school. He was a big bully, and he and I had an encounter the last day of school. He swore that he would kill me if he ever saw me again.”

“Well, damn. I left my shotgun at home. We could have a duel on the Edisto River, where I defend your honor. Hell, that could be the title of a movie. What do you think?”

Joe’s attempt at lightening the mood did not work. Joe walked up to Thomas, pushed his body against the side of the house, and leaned into a scorching kiss. They both laughed when they heard a car horn.

“We’ve got company.”

As they rounded the corner of the house, they saw a Mercedes convertible sitting in the drive. A handsome man was getting out of the car. He had someone else with him.

Thomas stopped in his tracks. He had hoped that Rhett would be a fat slob, but he was a handsome, in-shape man.

Rhett looked at Thomas with a questioning look.

“Thomas Raverly?”

“Yes, I am Rhett. It has been far too many years. This is my husband, Joe McKendry.”

Rhett was looking back and forth between them. He was ignoring the young man who was with him. Finally, the younger fellow spoke up and announced that his name was Beau Howard.

“I work with Rhett. I am his personal assistant.”

At that point, Rhett blushed. The assistant was handsome with his bleached hair, bleached teeth, and tanned skin. He was kitted out in expensive clothes. His Wayfarer sunglasses hid his eyes, but Joe knew they would be blue. He was eye candy of the expensive sort.

“Well, let’s go into the home. How long has it been since you were here? Was it at your mama’s funeral? You will find that the house is in good shape for its age. The prior owner let some maintenance things slip over the past 3-4 years, but nothing major.”

Joe stood back and let Thomas enter. He kept Rhett and Beau on the front porch, where he engaged them in conversation. Joe knew that Thomas needed some time with his memories. After chatting with the two men for about ten minutes, Joe said they should join Thomas. Thomas was nodding his head and smiling when Joe walked through the door.

“Thomas, do you mind giving us a tour. I am sure there is a lot you can tell us about your family’s home.”

Rhett was currying favor but also asking tidbits he could share with potential buyers. He figured that Thomas and Joe didn’t have the money for such a house and land. They drove a pickup truck. It was relatively new and very clean, but it was still a truck and not a sedan or sports car. Rhett prided himself on being able to quickly assess a person’s wealth. He had also looked at Joe with his tattered dungarees and a polo shirt that had been in fashion five years prior. He did have on flip-flops and not construction boots. That was something to be thankful for. Nope, these guys were just a waste of his time, even though it was good to see Thomas again.

Beau asked Joe to give him a tour of the house and explain its construction. Beau walked up the staircase, and Joe knew he was working his butt to make it look appealing. They were in the Master Bedroom when Beau made his move. Beau started fondling Joe’s junk that had been pushing out the front of his jeans. Beau had invaded Joe’s personal space and was leaning in for a kiss. Joe backed away and told Beau that he had the wrong idea.

“I’m sorry, I figured other older men were like Rhett. Always wanting a young guy like me. You are handsome and I misread the situation. My sincere apologies.”

Beau was flushed and appeared to be genuinely sorry so Joe said all was forgiven. Then Joe said he needed to find Thomas. Thomas was in the dining room looking at the chimney-piece.

“Joe, there is something not quite right. What do you think?”

Joe spent a few minutes inspecting the firebox.

“They have repaired the firebox in a half-ass manner. It needs ripping out and rebuilding. The bricks and mortar are wrong. It is not horrible, but it is not right for the period. Most people would not recognize that it was a problem. They would pass it off as looking strange.”

Beau asked Joe how he would repair the problem. Joe got on his back and slid into the firebox and then looked up the flue of the chimney. He tapped on bricks. He looked at the hearth. He then looked at the mantlepiece.

“It is a fairly straightforward job. You have to remove the mantle to start. Notice where they have repaired the plaster. Damn good job, but a discerning eye can see the line. You have to build a support system inside the firebox, so the entire chimney doesn’t collapse on itself. You would need to take out the replacement brick and mortar and replace it with custom made bricks. There is a brickyard in Roanoke, VA that can make custom bricks to match what is here. A mortar analyst out of Baltimore can take some of the old mortar and provide specifications for making new mortar that will match the old. The hearth is fairly new marble and is too shiny. There is a warehouse in Norfolk that is filled with pieces of marble from different periods. It can all be done. All it takes is time and money. If someone can afford the plantation, they should be able to afford to fix the fireplace.”

“Well, Joe. When I sell the house, may I give folks your name and number to call?”

Thomas smiled and said that might not be necessary.

“How is that, Thomas?”

“Well, Rhett. Joe and I may purchase it. I could come home again. I have several pieces of furniture that were made here on the plantation.”

“Have you seen the listing? Do you know what the owner is asking for the property?”

Thomas looked Rhett directly in the eyes and told him they had the money to purchase the house if they wanted it. Cash. Close in two weeks. Rhett gulped and then smiled.

“Why don’t the four of us have dinner tonight? I would love to take you out for some good Charleston food.”

Before Joe could respond, Thomas agreed. Joe stood back and put on a public smile while looking at his husband. At that particular moment, he wanted to strangle him. They weren’t buying this house or the one in Southport. They lived in Hillsborough and were damned happy there.

“Where shall we meet? We could come by and pick you up. You might like to ride in a Mercedes convertible.”

Joe mentioned the cottage court where they were staying. Rhett gasped and Beau smirked. It was too low life for someone like Rhett.

“Perhaps you would like for us to meet you at the restaurant. That is if they allow trucks in their parking lot.”

The sarcasm was lost on no one.

Joe waited for a response knowing that Rhett was trying to figure out a response that would calm the waters. Rhett realized that he had insulted potential buyers. Rhett had started channeling the bullying banter he had used with Thomas in high school, and now he had to switch gears. Could he do it? Rhett wasn’t sure because he wanted to bully Thomas again and then make him suck his cock. He remembered how good it felt that time in high school.

Copyright © 2020 Mac Rountree; All Rights Reserved.
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Yes...Rhett deserves a "blow" job - blown off and out of the water, the pompous bastard!  Thomas and Joe are such a wonderful couple!

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Thomas should tell Rhett, in his best 'Tara' southern accent: "Frankly Rhett, I do give a damn, you pompous, good for nothing, bullying piece o' white trash. And I'll bet you choke on small bones". But that wouldn't be the 'Southern Charm' or 'Gentleman's' way of doing things. A duel? Maybe.

Oh maybe, Thomas and Joe can find evidence that the State never notified him of either a will naming him heir, OR the legal right to pay back taxes to claim properly, And/OR that 'good ole' Rhett done sumpin illegal to steal estate?

Anything works.

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Interesting chapter!  Rhett is a real piece of work and I think Thomas got one-up on him after all these years!!

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4 hours ago, KayDeeMac said:

Interesting chapter!  Rhett is a real piece of work and I think Thomas got one-up on him after all these years!!

KayDeeMac,

Rhett has become more of what he truly is.  Unfortunately, there are too many of his ilk still hovering around these southern cities.

Mac

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