I was staring out at the Pacific, amazed by its vastness.Here I was, flying about 40,000 feet up in the air or so, and all I could see out any of the windows was ocean.I was flying on Stef’s old Falcon, although ‘old’ wasn’t a fair term to use for it.When he’d gotten his new Airbus jet, he’d decided to keep this one for other family members to use, except my father, who’d just bought a new Gulfstream.And of course, in typical Stef fashion, he’d taken that opportunity to redo the interior, making it even more modern and upscale than it was before.Traveling around in this thing was definitely not tough duty.The phone next to me buzzed, and I picked it up.“Mr. Schluter,” the pilot said, “your father would like us to patch him through.”
“That’s fine,” I said, with a hint of dread.
The line clicked a few times, then I heard his voice.“Hello there,” he said, trying to be pleasant.
“Hey,” I responded, mimicking his tone but with less enthusiasm.“What’s up?”
“I just called to check up on you,” he said.“I’m sorry we didn’t get home before you left.”He and Jake had been in Connecticut on Monday and Tuesday.
“No big deal.How was JJ?”
“He was doing better,” Dad said.“I guess he had a little bit of a meltdown last week, but he’s gotten beyond that.”
“He was pretty moody when I talked to him,” I agreed.He’d been on various combinations of drugs for a while now, but they didn’t seem to really help all that much.
“They’re going to try a new drug cocktail, as they call it, and hopefully that will work,” Dad said.
“Have you ever considered that this is just the way he is?I mean, it’s not a stretch to think the real JJ is super moody and uber-bitchy,” I said.
“Ha ha ha,” he said, slamming my sarcasm, although there weren’t many members in my family who, if they were being honest, could disagree with my statement.Before I could segue that into a good reason to get off the phone, he hit me with the reason he was calling.“What’s your schedule?”
“The funeral is tomorrow,” I said sadly.Kai’s father had finally lost his long battle with muscular dystrophy and had died the day before yesterday.Kai’s mother had gotten a new computer and had discovered email last year, and I’d ended up being one of her pen pals.She sent me an email pretty much every week, and I usually responded pretty quickly, although my emails were nowhere near as long as hers.That had made the bond between us a lot stronger, so when Mr. Keolani died, to me it was like a death in the family.
“What kind of funeral is it?” he asked.
“Kai told me that he’s already been cremated, so they’ll bury his ashes at sea.That’s tomorrow.Tonight there’s a wake at Kai’s house,” I said.The whole thing seemed much more laid back than the formal things I’d been dragged to.
“Please convey our sympathy to Kai and his mother,” he said stiffly.
“I’ll do that,” I said.The whole thing was pretty awful to deal with, but regardless, I really didn’t feel like talking about it with my father, so I moved the conversation on from that topic. “I’m going to hang out here for a couple of days, see if I can be supportive, and I’m going to surf.Then I’m going to Australia,” I said, answering his question about my plans.
“Jake and I were thinking of meeting you there early,” he said.
“When you say ‘there’, where do you mean?” I asked.I was pretty sure he wasn’t talking about Hawaii, but I figured I’d make him spell it out.
“Australia,” he said, acting like I was an idiot.They were supposed to fly over at the end of the month, but he and Stef were being all paranoid about me going there by myself. Grand, on the other hand, seemed to understand me perfectly, and had merely given me a nice hug and told me to have a nice trip.
“That’s fine,” I said, noncommittally.It wasn’t my place to ban him from doing what he wanted, even though I really didn’t want him to fly over there as soon as I landed.
“It would be nice if you could hang out in Hawaii for a few extra days until we can get free,” he said.“Then we can all fly to Sydney together.”
“No,” I said firmly.I’d already had this argument with him once, and then I’d had it with Stef.
“Why is that such a hard thing to do?” he demanded, all pissed off that I was foiling his big plan to go with me to Australia and make sure I was situated in a place he approved of.
“Part of the reason I’m making this trip is so I can go down there alone and figure things out by myself,” I said.“It’s a personal growth experience.”I figured that throwing out language like that may remind him of Aunt Kat and annoy him.
“You don’t think it’s fair for us to worry about your safety?” he asked, throwing major guilt at me.
“No, I don’t.I think it’s offensive,” I said sharply.“I think it would be so much better if you told me that you were confident that I’d be just fine, that you trusted my judgment, and then flew down at the end of the month like you planned.”
He didn’t say anything for a minute, then sighed.“Have a good trip.”
“Thank you,” I said, and hung up the phone, shaking my head as I did.In the past, I’d have been worried that he’d start plotting to spy on me or some shit like that, but I was pretty sure that Jake would stop him from doing that.He’d been such a good influence on my dad, to the point where now I could relax a bit and not snap my father’s head off when he went into his control freak mode.
Their wedding in Whistler had seemed to usher in a pretty quiet period in my life.I’d finished up school, acing my last classes, and been formally admitted to Harvard for the fall.It made me smile to think that Marie and Ryan were still at Menlo, trudging through their final semester, while I was totally free to do whatever I wanted.It had been a lot of fun rubbing their noses in that, but I’d worked hard to get done, and they hadn’t.They were pretty much together now, which actually made me nervous, because it was going to suck for both of them when fall rolled around.Marie was either going to Brown or Princeton, while it looked like Ryan was going to end up at UC San Diego.His grades weren’t all that great, but his baseball skills were enough to seal the deal on admission there.Chris Carmichael had moved into Escorial about a week ago, and I’d hung out with him and had a blast.He was a life-of-the-party kind of guy, and always looking for something cool to do.I’d seen Colin over the break too, and he’d damn near wore me out.It was like he hadn’t gotten laid since we first met in October, so by December he was about to explode.He was cute, a good friend, but there was no comparison between him and Zach.
Thinking of Zach made me sigh and grimace.He and Taylor Buck were together, so much that he’d spent Thanksgiving and part of his Christmas break with her family.It would be so easy to be pissed off at him about this whole thing, but in my core being I knew she would never make him happy.He’d manage to sneak away during both of those breaks and come up to see me, and we’d spent damn near the entire time fucking.That reminded me of Colin, and I got bitchy, thinking that I was just hanging out in Escorial, being the resident cum dump.I pushed that aside and smiled when I thought about how much fun I’d had with both of them, but especially with Zach.He was trying so hard to conform and be a typical college football player, but the kinky gay side of him was lurking beneath that veneer.Part of me was annoyed at him for making such stupid choices, about picking football and Taylor and hiding who he really was, and part of me was sorry for him, because I knew how hard this was for him.
The phone buzzed so I picked it up.“Mr. Schluter, we’ll be on the ground in fifteen minutes,” the pilot said.That prompted me to look out the window, to see the beautiful island of Maui looming off to the left of the plane.
“Thanks,” I said.
“The FBO told us that Mr. Glazer had arranged transportation for you,” he said a bit nervously.Everyone was paranoid about security after my father’s plane had crashed last year, so any change in plans like this freaked them out.Mr. Glazer would be Malcolm, the designer who’d worked on my house, and he was harmless, so there was no need for anyone to worry about him.
“That’s fine,” I said, to reassure him.I put my stuff away, then slid over to the other side of the plane so I could watch as we approached the airport.I smiled broadly when I spotted my house on the cliff above one of the best surfing beaches in Maui.Last year I’d bought up a bunch of the houses and land around the place, and now we were going to build a family compound there.The plans were really cool but getting permits and zoning adjustments was taking a while, so it was disappointing that there wasn’t any construction going on yet.
The plane landed and taxied to the Fixed Base Operator we used.I looked out the window to see Malcolm driving his BMW up to the plane.As soon as the stairs were in place, the co-pilot opened the door to let me out.“Thanks for an easy flight.You guys can head back home.”
“We could have gotten you to Australia, but it would have required a stop or two,” he said.I smiled at him, then hurried down the stairs to find Malcolm waiting for me.He was a handsome guy in an effete kind of way.He really had no visible muscle tone, but that just reminded me of how soft his ass was.
“Welcome to Maui!” he said, and we gave each other a Euro embrace, with a quasi-hug and a fake kiss on the cheek.“You look fantastic.”He was probably mostly referring to my clothes, since I’d worn gray slacks, a blue shirt, and a blazer, but skipped the tie, that way I was already dressed to go to the wake tonight.
“Thanks!” I said enthusiastically.“What an awesome surprise, to have you pick me up!”He paused to open his trunk so the pilots could cram my luggage in.I kept my backpack with me and put it in the back seat.
“I’m glad you think so,” he said, with his sexy South African accent.“You certainly have a lot of stuff with you.” I had a large suitcase and a big garment bag.
“I’m going to Australia after this, so I’ll probably be gone for a month at least,” I said.
“My mistake,” he said, as he started the car and drove off.“I don’t think you brought enough.”
“I’ll look good, don’t worry,” I said, flirting with him.I’d fucked him once, when he was working on my house.I hadn’t been with anyone for a couple of weeks, so the thought of a repeat performance was starting to look pretty good.
“I’m sure,” he said dismissively, then changed the subject.“I wanted to show you the guest house.We got it done.”
“You mean the Hawaiian Tourist décor is all gone?” I asked, pretending to be sad.The guest house was near the pool and was the original house that had been on the property before the new one was built.It was a classic mid-century modern ranch home, with an island twist.It was pretty cool, but the inside had been incredibly tacky, with lots of bamboo and grass skirt type accents.
“It has been dutifully put to rest,” he joked, then got all nervous, since it was pretty tasteless to joke about death since I was here for a funeral.
“I’ve got a room to show you too,” I said.He pulled up to the gates and stopped to punch in the code, then zipped through them when they opened and parked in front of the house.
“You do, eh?” he asked curiously.
“First you have to help me with my luggage,” I said.He gave me a dubious look but settled for the garment bag, which was relatively light, while I toted my heavy suitcase and backpack.We carried them into the house and set them by the front door, then I followed him through the first floor to the back yard, and to the guest house.
“There weren’t really any character pieces that we could save,” he said as he led me up to the guest house.“We pretty much gutted it and started from scratch.I worked with Stefan on that.I hope that was alright.”
“It’s a little late now,” I joked, and watched him freak out about that.He was a pretty nervous and uptight person and took my jokes way too seriously.“That’s fine.He’s got excellent taste.”
“He certainly does,” Malcolm said, although he wasn’t all that convincing.I’d learned from being around Stef, JJ, Aunt Claire, and Marie that these designer types usually could find something to criticize in another designer’s work.He opened the door and led me into a space that looked nothing like it had before.
“Wow, this is amazing!” I said, noting how different it was.
“We basically configured it so there are two bedrooms with large bathrooms, a kitchen, and a main room.Outside there’s a covered shower and changing area,” he said.The kitchen was nice, more than adequate for anyone but a true gourmet, and the main room was really comfortable, with cushy leather furniture and a big-ass television.They’d truly done an amazing job on the bathrooms.When I’d first moved in and stayed here with Kai, we’d often bumped against the walls while fucking around in the shower, but the new ones were so big that wouldn’t be a problem, assuming I got a chance to fuck around with Kai again.Last I heard he had a boyfriend, a nice guy named Ronnie.
“You did such a good job I’m tempted to stay out here,” I said.
“Thank you,” he replied.“And now where’s this room you’re going to show me?”
“Follow me,” I said.I led him back through the house and stopped to grab my suitcase.I gave him a long stare, he sighed, grabbed my garment bag, and followed me up to my room.We walked through the door and put down my bags, then took in the view.He was probably admiring the beautiful room, while I was admiring the view of the Pacific.
“I am still impressed with how well this turned out,” he said, staring at my room and admiring his handiwork.
“This room is more fun,” I said, and led him to the room Stef had designed for me.
“So did you design this as a dungeon?” he asked me, chuckling.I punched in the code, pushed the door open and held it for him.
“See for yourself,” I said.
He gave me a nervous look as he walked in while I followed him in and shut the door behind us.He stopped and stared at the sling, while I pressed up behind him.“I probably should go,” he said. His voice was shaking, not with fear, but with desire.
“That’s what you said the last time we were here, and it ended up being a lot of fun,” I said softly, even as I nuzzled his neck.I let my hands run down his soft abdomen to his belt, pulling him back into me so he could feel my hard cock pressing against his soft ass cheeks.
“Ahhh!” he moaned, and thrust back into me.
“So get your fucking clothes off and get your ass in that sling,” I growled, and bit his neck a bit when I did.I didn’t have to argue with him anymore after that.We spent the next half hour learning how to use the sling to fuck in all kinds of different positions, and ended up breathless on the leather-matted floors.
“That was as much fun as I remembered,” he said, and gave me a gentle kiss.I smiled even as I kissed him back, because after we’d fucked last time, he’d gotten all uncomfortable and freaked out, while this time he was just enjoying the afterglow.
“I think this is why you came to pick me up,” I said, raising an eyebrow.
“Maybe you’re right,” he agreed.“I have to go.”I handed him a towel to wipe the cum off his body, then we got dressed and I walked him to the front door.
“Thanks for the ride,” I said.
“I should be thanking you for the ride,” he joked, then got nervous like he did.“You’ll probably be busy, but if you get bored, give me a call.”
“I’ll do that,” I said.I saw him out, then went upstairs to unpack the stuff in the part of my suitcase I’d need for Hawaii, and hung up my garment bag so my suits wouldn’t wrinkle.That took all of fifteen minutes.I noticed that it was 4:30, so I called Kai to let him know I was in town.
“Hey,” he said somberly, as he answered the phone. I was in a pretty good mood, being here in Hawaii and having just fucked Malcolm, so I had to dial my mood back to match his.
“Hey,” I replied, in the same tone.“I’m here, and I wanted to see what you were doing.”
“Hanging out at the house,” he said.I heard people talking in the background, and then I heard the voices fading as he moved away from them. “There’s all kinds of people here.Friends, family, I think half the damn island is crammed into our house.”
“Dude, that sucks,” I said, remembering how awful it had been to be nice and entertain other people at my mom and Robbie’s funerals. The memory of those events actually did deflate my mood.
“Well at least they all brought food, so there’s lots to eat,” he said.
“That’s good news,” I said, especially since I was hungry.
“You should come over,” he said apprehensively, probably because he knew it wouldn’t be a good time.That didn’t bother me, though, since it was pretty much what I expected.“My mom will want to see you.”
“And you won’t?” I flirted.I could almost see him smiling on the other end of the phone.
“We’ll talk about that,” he said, and hung up.We had a Toyota 4Runner on the property to use when we were here, so I grabbed the keys and went out to the garage.It had been sitting for a while, so I was glad it started with no problems.It was kind of cool to be driving so high up after driving my Ferrari, where I was damn near sitting on the ground it was so low.Fifteen minutes later found me trying to park near their house, a task that turned into quite a challenge since there were a lot of other people visiting.
Their neighborhood was nice enough, what I would classify as blue-collar, but I got some looks as I walked toward their house, probably because I was dressed so well.There were a bunch of people milling around outside Kai’s house, but they just looked at me without saying anything.I walked past them and into the house, since the door was open.I paused to admire the remodeling job I’d paid for a couple of years ago, the one that had created one big open living and kitchen area.On one of the walls of the house they’d put up a bunch of pictures of Kai’s father with big letters on it that read Mano Keolani, RIP, 2004. I moved through the crowd, saying “excuse me” as I did, heading toward Kai’s mom.She was in the kitchen talking to people, with food spread out on the island and the countertops.People were maneuvering around her and the people she was talking to so they could eat.
Some lady was directly between me and Kai’s mom, and when I nudged her so I could go around her, she gave me an annoyed look.She was probably about to lay into me about being a rude asshole when Kai’s mom saw me.“Will!” she said loudly and pulled me into a massive hug.It was kind of awkward since she was all of 5’4 and I was 6’3”, but that didn’t bother me at all.I gripped her just as tightly as she gripped me, and it was so reassuring to feel her raw maternal love coming loud and clear through that hug.“It is so good to see you.Thank you for coming.”
“I told you I’d be here,” I said, as we pulled apart.
“This is my other son, Will,” she said, introducing me to the ladies around her, making me smile broadly at her impromptu adoption of me.“You should eat.”
“I will, right after I track down Kai,” I said.
“He’s in the back yard,” she said, gesturing in that direction.As I walked away, I heard her saying all kinds of nice things about me, which made me smile, even though I didn’t deserve all the accolades she was piling on me.Kai was standing by a barbecue talking to some older Hawaiian guys who were grilling shit, and there was more food laid out on a table back here.I paused to look at him and appreciate how handsome he was.When I’d first met him, he’d been lithe like a panther, but he’d gotten a bit bigger as he’d matured.He still had the same facial features, with a slightly flattened nose, a pear-shaped face, and eyes that were distinctly Hawaiian in shape. Best of all, he’d kept his curly hair longer, so that it fell down to just above his shoulders.Long hair wasn’t popular, but his was so cool it didn’t matter.It was curly and frizzy enough to make it seem like he had dreadlocks, but it was soft and silky to the touch.
“Hey,” I said to Kai when I got close enough for him to hear me.
“Dude!” he said, and smiled broadly as he hurried over to greet me.He gave me as big of a hug as his mom did, but since we were closer to the same height, our bodies fit together perfectly.“I am so glad you’re here.”
“It’s really good to see you,” I said.He introduced me to the people there, then started grabbing some food, probably to encourage me to do the same thing.That wasn’t necessary; I was starving.I ate and talked, and talked and ate, and even though this was a somber event, I was having a really good time.The people here were really friendly and laid back, native Hawaiians, and once they figured out that I was part of the Keolani’s extended family, they treated me like I was one of them.
I was talking to some hot chick who had graduated with Kai, flirting and enjoying her conversation, when I felt a hand on my ass.“Nice,” I heard Scott Slater say.
“Excuse me,” I said to her, “there’s some dude grabbing my ass.”
“Lucky you,” she said with a chuckle, then walked away.
I turned around, expecting to find Scott Slater there, and it was him, only he looked completely different.He’d gotten the crap beat out of him last year, and my father had told us the plastic surgeon had used Kelly Slater as a guide, and they’d made him look really handsome.They’d given him a strong nose with a solid bridge, and a chin that jutted out just a bit.The only drawback was that his face didn’t look entirely natural, but then again, I was used to the Los Angeles and New York crowds, so that wasn’t unusual to me.“You look hot!” I said.
“I do,” he agreed, and pulled me into a big hug.While he was hugging me he started nuzzling my neck and nibbling on my earlobe until I pushed him away.
“Dude, there isn’t enough alcohol in this entire house to make me sleep with you,” I said, smiling. He was attractive before, and now he was even more alluring, but he was also totally off limits, since he was an old high school friend of my father’s.My father would give birth to kittens if I fucked this guy.Still, if there wasn’t that connection, he’d be tempting.
“You never know,” he said. I ignored him and focused on the guy next to him.
“Hey Keenan.” He was a big guy and really attractive.Evidently my father had met him for the first time when he’d interrupted Robbie fucking him.He’d been a rent boy back then, but I wasn’t sure what he was doing now.He was Kai’s cousin, so I’d expected him to be here.
“Good to see you,” he said shyly.
“You still hanging out with him?” I asked with disdain, gesturing toward Scott.
“Yeah,” he said, nodding.
“I got this great new face and your father hasn’t even seen it,” Scott said, pouting.
“He’s focused on a prettier face than yours,” I said, giving him crap.I enjoyed bantering with Scott.
“I heard about that, and heard he got married again,” Scott said.“I hope this guy isn’t an asshole like the last one.”
“Which one are you talking about?” I demanded, getting all defensive.
“That slick dude he took to Australia,” he said, acting annoyed that I thought he was talking about Robbie.He was actually referring to Marc Carmine.
“He wasn’t an asshole,” I said sharply, because it was true.“Neither is this dude.His name is Jake, and he’s good for my father.”
“You think he’s good for your father?” he asked, surprised.
“I do,” I confirmed.
“That’s saying something,” he said.“How long you in town for?”
“Couple of days,” I said casually.
“It would be fun to surf with you if you have a break,” he said.That got a big smile from me, because I loved to surf, and Scott was a lot of fun to hit the waves with.
“That would be the bomb,” I said enthusiastically.“Funeral is tomorrow, but maybe on Friday?”
“I’ll talk to you about it tomorrow.We can either hit the waves here, or head to Jaws,” he said.Jaws was an amazing beach, but pretty dangerous if you didn’t know what you were doing.For me, that just made it more fun.
“I’ll see if I can talk Kai into going,” I said, thinking about how much fun Jaws would be if he went with us.
“Shouldn’t be a tough sell,” he said.“Heard he’s a single guy now.”He gestured over at Kai, who was talking to his aunt.
“Oh yeah?” I asked curiously.
“That’s what I hear,” he said. I looked to Keenan for details.
“He was with that Ronnie dude, but they broke up,” he said simply.
“What happened?” I asked. Keenan was the kind of guy where if you wanted to know something, you pretty much had to drag the information out of him.
“Kai went away to school, and Ronnie found a new man,” Keenan said with a grimace.“Kai wasn’t real happy about it.”
“That sucks,” I said, feeling bad for him.“How’s he doing with it?”
Keenan shrugged.“Got other things to worry about now.”I sensed that there was more to this than just his father’s death.
“What other things?” I asked.He got uncomfortable, since I was all but grilling him.He looked at Scott, who explained things to me.
“Kiki doesn’t own this house,” Scott said.He was referring to Kai’s mom.Her name was Keikona, but her friends called her Kiki.
“She doesn’t?” I asked, confused.
“This was Mano’s parent’s house,” Keenan said.“When Mano got sick, they let them move in and live here.Now that Mano died, it goes back to the family.”
“So they’re just going to throw her out?” I asked, completely pissed off.
Keenan gestured to an older guy in another part of the yard, who was talking to a few other people.Except for me, he was more dressed up than the other people here and wore a big gaudy Rolex on his wrist.JJ would have a field day critiquing this guy’s wardrobe, since it was pretty garish.“My uncle’s in charge, and he’s a dick.”
“We’ll see about that,” I growled.
Scott put his arm around me, not in a sexy way, but to calm me down and to pull me closer so he could talk to me and not be overheard.“Be careful with that guy.He’s got ties to some bad people.”
“Bad people?” I asked.
“His name is Malo Keolani, and rumor has it he controls most of the illegal drugs coming into Maui, and a lot of the exports too,” Scott said.
“You’re telling me not to try and push this guy around,” I said.He nodded.
“If you piss this guy off, you’ll have to call in your father to take him down, and that won’t be pretty,” he warned.
The last thing I needed was to cause problems bad enough that my father had to come bail my ass out, and if I did that, there was no way I’d be able to go to Australia by myself.“Got it,” I said.