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This story contains sexual descriptions.

You can now find the story on Amazon and purchase the Kindle book or a paperback book at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B087WKT398/ref=cm_sw_em_r_mt_dp_U_LteREb9NTMCH4

U-N-I - 33. Chapter 33 - Coming home - Part 2

The boys go back to Dublin and the story comes full circle.

"Why d'you stop the car?" Rob asked full of concern.

I gripped the steering wheel tightly and didn't speak. He reached over and rubbed my shoulder lightly.

"Babe, you've been back before, it's ok."

"I know, and I feel exactly the same. I don't know – I don't know what I'm doing here," I sighed and his hand moved to the back of my neck.

"You're here because I've asked you to be," he said.

"I shouldn't have come, what's the point, it's been three years and nothing's different with her and I really don't need to see James again."

"We're here to see the old place before it's sold."

I sighed again.

“Come on, Mark, we've only got to turn that last corner and we’ll be there,” he said, his hand soothingly caressing the nape of my neck, making me feel safe and taken care of.

"And if we do see James - and I hope we will – then you'll finally get closure."

"Why does everybody think I need closure? I'm fine."

He didn't say anything for a moment and I still didn't re-start the car.

"Well, if you're not going to drive, then there's something I'd like to do, you're giving me no choice!" he said and took a slim leather document wallet from his footwell before he opened the door of the McLaren supercar he and Jordan had got me for my birthday.

“Rob, where're you going?"

“Wait and see,” he grinned, leaving the door open.

"C’mon, what’re you up to?”

I drummed my fingers on the steering wheel, my anxiety level rising with every second that passed.

“Rob, come on, what the fuck are you doing?” I yelled.

He leaned down to look at me,

“Won’t be long, open the boot or whatever it is you petrol heads call it in one of these things," he said smugly.

“Oh for fuck’s sake, can you not make it harder for me.”

I’d vacillated about coming here since Rob and I had first talked about it but he had pleaded with me to be here with him so I’d finally agreed.

The one compromise I’d insisted on was that we came mid-week when my not-a-father might not be home, at a time he should be at work, even though the only reason Rob wanted me to come with him was for me to confront James. I could cope with speaking with my mother but seeing James again would be another matter entirely.

Hence my anxiety levels being sky-high.

I too had wanted to visit Rob’s old bedroom one last time to say goodbye to it forever – this house had always been my sanctuary and somehow it felt like our eager teenaged selves were still there. But it also felt like I’d be saying goodbye to my young naïve self.

“Come on, let's go, drive on babe,” Rob said as he got back into the passenger seat. I looked at him questioningly and he smiled at me.

I pressed the gas pedal and just as we turned into the road where we’d grown up Rob changed the music – it was the un-edited recording of our last tour. We filmed and recorded all the shows so we could improve on our stage performances every time we went on the road.

“Rob, what the hell?” I moved to turn it down, or preferably off, but he stopped me.

“Rob, he won’t be there to hear it!" I said, hoping I was right.

“Maybe not, but I'm sure your mother will be – and maybe some of the neighbours.”

He still hadn’t told me what he’d been up to when he’d got out of the car.

“Is it me or does everything look,” Rob paused, “smaller?” he asked as I stopped the car outside his old home.

He was right, it did and then I thought that maybe we’d been away long enough to no longer see things as we had as kids.

“Come on babe, time to say goodbye.”

“Yeah,” I breathed, “I suppose it is,” I kept my eyes on the road ahead.

“Are you ok now?” he’d leaned close enough to speak into my ear.

“Actually no, and don’t ask because I can’t say why.”

“Can’t or won’t?” Rob asked.

“Just can’t, I can’t even explain it to myself," I said, although I knew I was just nervous because I knew the time had come to confront James – if it turned out he was at home - and it was making me nervous as fuck.

I looked at Rob and I knew what he was feeling,

“It all began here for us, being friends, the band, the music, the love,” he said, still leaning close enough to speak into my ear.

I nodded, all that was true for both of us but there was more to it for me; one of these houses had been my hell, one had been my haven. I thought about the lyrics Rob had written all those years ago in “A Rush Of Blood To The Head” about buying this place and watching it burn. I looked at my childhood hell and imagined it in flames, obliterated, turned to a pile of ash but it wouldn’t work – the memories were mine for life whether the bricks and mortar still existed or not.

“I’m here,” Rob murmured, placing his hand on my cheek and I leaned into it.

I nodded again, took a deep breath and threw open my door, the music dying as I pressed the stop button to switch off the engine.

“Thank fuck for that!"

I thought I’d heard Rob mutter something like,

“Won’t make any difference,” but we’d both been getting out of the car so I couldn’t be sure.

Then I was certain.

I could see what Rob had done,

“You have got to be,” I yelled, unable to fully express my stunned surprise, lifting my arms out to my sides then letting them fall in exasperation.

On the roof of the car he’d placed two slim poles each about two feet tall, they were attached with suckers one at the front the other at the rear, between them was strung a Pride-rainbow striped banner with the words, “The Dream Team” emblazoned on it along with the band’s logo.

"If he's here, he'll sure as hell know we are too!" Rob said smugly.

I shook my head, any hope I’d had to arrive and leave without being noticed had been blown well and truly out of the water.

Rob waited until I’d walked round the car to the pavement before moving away from it, he held his hand out to me which part of me wanted to pretend I hadn’t noticed just in case anyone, specifically my mother, saw us, but another, the larger part, knew how that would hurt both of us so I smiled and linked my fingers with his.

Jane had arrived before us and had the door open, she was smiling as Rob and I walked up the short flight of concrete steps and pulled Rob into one of her loving, motherly, hugs as soon as he was through the door, then she did the same with me.

“Nothing’s changed,” Rob observed.

"I can't believe how different the place looks!" we heard Jordan say, "I wish my olds hadn't sold theirs, I think I'm gonna knock on the door and see who lives there now!"

"How come you're here already, I didn't see your car," I asked him.

"I got here about half an hour ago, Grainne dropped me off, she's gonna meet up with some friends, she's got news for them," he said and gave me a hug.

"She said yes," he whispered.

I smiled and rubbed his back,


"Who would've thought!" Rob laughed, hugging him and congratulating him as well.

"We're coming over for dinner with my folks tonight, Jane's invite."

"Oh yes," Jane said, "I want to get to know the lucky lady."

"You're gonna love her!" Jordan said.

"Yeah, she's like the daughter-in-law you've always wished you'd had!" Rob said jokingly.

"When have I ever said that to you?" Jane asked, faking being offended.

Rob laughed and then added,

"I thought the place would be empty."

“We asked Luke if he wanted to take some of the furniture with him but he decided not to so we sold it furnished.”

Rob's cousin had been living in Dublin for the past four years for his studies and now he’d got his first job in Manchester. When Rob's parents had moved out of the house, they had left most of their furniture for him to use since we had bought them new everything to decorate their new home.

"What if we want to take some of the furniture?" I asked.

Jane let out a small laugh,

"I guess you can take whatever you want, your dad rented the van outside for the day, there's a few things he'd left here that he now wants to bring back home, not much but since it couldn't all fit in the car… What would you want to keep?"

I smiled I loved how she referred to Rob’s dad that way to me. I kind of wanted to take Rob's bed, I didn't like the idea of some stranger sleeping in it, or even worse, throwing it away. I couldn’t work out why I was feeling so emotionally attached to things which had never been mine. The house. The bed?!

“Go and have a wander round, that's what you came here for,” Rob's mum told us.

She headed to the kitchen with Jordan, telling him that his coffee was ready, and his dad picked up a carton box to take it to the van. Rob and I jogged upstairs, straight to his bedroom where he closed the door behind us.

“You ok?" Rob asked as he turned to me.

"Are you?" I asked back as we both looked at the room and recalled our childhood.

The room looked different, it wasn't as warm as it used to be but it was still filled with many memories.

"I wonder if it still works," Rob said, gently lifting the lid of his turntable that neither his parents nor he had chosen to take when they had moved out, "wanna take it with us?"

"Yeah," I nodded. "I know exactly where to put it at home."

I walked over to the window and stood there, watching the street below us for a moment and I suddenly felt like I was twelve again. Tears filled my eyes for the frightened, hurt, confused little boy who’d begged countless times to stay here.

"Jeez," I sighed as I wiped them away with my fingers.

“Oh babe, it's ok,” Rob murmured walking over to me, he wrapped me in his arms.

"It's stupid, I'm thirty fucking years old."

"It's not stupid. I shouldn’t have asked you to come here but I had this weird idea that it might help you put it all to rest once and for all.”

We said nothing for long moments and a few more tears filled my eyes. I didn't try to stop them. It felt good in a way, to let it go. I knew it'd help but at that moment I was overwhelmed by the memories of being too scared to be in the house that should have been my home and feeling so grateful that Rob’s home was always the place I could escape to.

As Rob held me in his arms, I could feel the care, support and protection he had always given me and I remembered how safe he and his parents had made me feel. All of a sudden, I wished I had the balls to barge into my parent's house and yell at them for everything they'd put me through.

“I didn't want mum and dad to sell the place you know," Rob told me.

"Why not?"

"I don't know, I guess I wasn't ready to let it go and I don’t think you are either."

"Yeah, I get that but none of it was ever mine to let go of. It's weird to think that a complete stranger will soon be living here."

"Yeah, but it won't be a complete stranger,” Rob said.

“What d'you mean?"

“I mean, well, mum and dad put the house for sale because I told them I'd found someone I trusted to buy it, otherwise they would’ve looked for a new tenant."

“You did?” I asked as I raised my head from his shoulder.

“Yeah, I knew they wanted to sell it and not bother with having a tenant but I couldn’t bear the thought of a total stranger having it."

“So who?” I raised my eyebrows as I looked at him.

“Charlie,” he grinned.

“Oh you have got to be kidding me!” I exclaimed loudly, starting to feel laughter rising within me.


“How the hell did you manage to arrange that?”

“Brilliantly,” he giggled.


"Remember after we talked about him in Italy, I told you I had a quick look on Facebook and found him super easily and that we chatted for a bit."

"Yeah but…"

"Well, he happened to tell me that he was looking to buy a house in Rathmines, so I told him my parents were thinking about selling their old home because their tenant would soon be moving out and well…"

"Why would he want to buy it?"

"Well, a short time after he asked about the house again, wanted to know if it was still for sale, said it's the perfect size and location for him, exactly what he was looking for, so I told him we'd make him a good deal if he promised to tell me or my parents the second he's thinking about moving out and putting it back on the market."

I shook my head.

"So, you know, we can still visit," Rob said suggestively.

I laughed, he always knew how to lighten up my mood,

"Oh, you can so forget it!"

"Just kidding," he chuckled.

I wasn’t sure I liked the idea but it was better than the alternative and I could already feel an odd sense of relief washing over me.

“Come with me,” he whispered as he kissed my neck, he led me to the bed and tilted his head towards the bare mattress, “for one last time?”

I smiled and took a few steps to lay on the side I’d always slept on as he did the same, when he was facing me, I spoke,

“So, can we talk or do you want to sleep?” I gave him a small smile.

“Oh my god," he sighed, running his hands over his face, "I sort of knew what you were going to say, that you’d worked out I’m gay, my stomach sank so fast I thought I was going to throw up,” he huffed a small laugh.

"Well, you didn't really know what I was going to say, did you? And well, to be honest, neither did I, but I sure as fuck wanted you to tell me how you felt about me," I recalled.

"Oh fuck, that was the worst," he said, letting out a huff and I laughed, “I was so nervous about telling you. It was because of how I felt about you that I had no intention of coming out. If everyone knew I was gay, I didn’t think you’d keep staying here in case people started saying that you must be too."

"Turns out they wouldn't have been wrong!" I said, sniggering.

"I thought that was what you were going to tell me, that you couldn’t,” he didn’t need to say more.

“Honestly, it wouldn't have changed anything. We’d all been talking about you probably being gay for a while but not for one moment did it occur to me to not come here. To escape the hell-hole I lived in.”

Rob stroked my face,

“That was the main reason I didn’t want to come out. If James knew I was gay, he would have assumed you were too and god knows what he would've done to you after that," he shook his head, "I didn't want me being gay to cause you trouble you know. And after we got together, fuck," he huffed, "I was even more worried he'd find out, I couldn't wait for us to just leave."

"I know. You've always thought of me before you thought of yourself," I murmured and looked into his caring eyes.

I gave him an almost shy look,

“You can kiss me if you want,” I said, closely repeating what my teenaged self had said on that fateful night.

Rob's lips formed a small smile,

"I think I might need a hug first, I feel kinda down right now," he said, looking at me with soft puppy eyes.

"Aw, come here!"

We both sat up, I moved between Rob's legs and wrapped mine around his waist. I moved my hands on each side of his face and as we gazed into each other's eyes, a small smile spread across our lips, and then we were kissing.

So, we were a married couple now, we weren’t horny eighteen-year-olds anymore who had secretly wanted each other for way too long, but fuck, kissing him on that bed felt just as good as it had back then – the perfect pressure of his lips against mine, the feeling of his tongue perfectly wrapped around mine, the intoxicating smell of his breath and skin as we kissed – the feel of his soft hair as I slid up my hand into it – it was all still exhilarating.

"Damn, I love you," Rob breathed before I could say it, gently rubbing my back with his fingers in a slow circle.

"I love you too," I murmured as my mouth grazed his cheek. "Sometimes, I just can't believe this is where we are now, just can't believe it, I couldn't have dreamt of a better life for us. I never would've thought we'd come this far!"

"No," he agreed, "but I knew we'd accomplish great things together though, that I knew!" he said, kissing my cheek tenderly.

"I guess you had faith in us," I said and he nodded.

I looked into his eyes and thought about how lucky we were that everything had worked out the way it had between us. I was so thankful to have his love and support and to be married to my best friend.

We held each other tight and I sighed as I again rested my forehead on Rob’s shoulder, I was home, wherever Rob and I were together was home – all my anxiety, pain and confusion disappeared.

Until we heard noise coming to us from outside.

I disentangled myself from Rob, he reached for me, but to no avail, I was too curious to see where the voices were coming from. I looked out of the window and saw that, thanks to Rob's antics, between about thirty and forty people had gathered in front of the house and Jordan was already outside, signing autographs, taking selfies and chatting with them.

"Rob, look at what you've done, now they’ll all know we're here!"

He came to stand behind me and looked through the window as well,

"Oh-oh," he slowly said, "that's a lot of people."

"Yeah," I confirmed, "I guess it's time to get outta here."

I took his hand in mine and we walked downstairs and out in the street. We began chatting with happy and excited fans. Some people had only stopped because they'd seen an unusual gathering in the street and a McLaren super car but others were true fans of ours and just couldn't believe their luck.

I would be lying if I said I was completely relaxed as we chatted and took pictures with the fans. I kept checking that the door to my parents' house stayed closed but after a short while I began enjoying the moment and stopped worrying.

I shouldn't have.

A few minutes passed then I felt the need to check one more time and when I turned around again, I stiffened, he was watching us – my supposed father. He stood by the front door and I was surprised to not find him changed. He obviously looked older but, to me, he was exactly as I remembered him – menacing and surly. My mother appeared and began pleading with him to get in their house, which he did, but not without showing his dissatisfaction by refusing to let her touch him.

My mother looked at me and our eyes met for a brief second and then she turned around and followed him inside.

Suddenly a life-time’s worth of anger roiled inside me and I ran towards the front door to get inside before my mother had the chance to lock it behind her, which I knew she'd do. She saw me and froze. I was already past my mother when Rob shouted after me but I carried on going.



I walked inside and was greeted by all the familiar but unpleasant sights and smells of the house I grew up in. I stopped and watched as James sat on the same armchair he’d always occupied then turned on the TV and I remembered eveything I despised about him.

I stood in the living room and watched the man who had made my life a misery for eighteen years. He didn't pay any attention to me, it was like I wasn't even there.

"So you're just gonna ignore me?"

His face showed annoyance and anger and I knew mine did too.

"Isn't that what you've been doing for the past ten years," he said disdainfully, still not looking at me, his whole attitude was making me want to just clock him in the face and force him to speak.

"Isn't that what you did my whole childhood?" I shot back, my voice full of contempt.

"What are you all doing here?" I heard my mother ask as Rob, Jordan and Rob's parents entered the living room as well – she’d clearly been too surprised by my rush to follow James she’d forgotten to lock the front door before joining him and me.

"Looks like your gay boy’s returned," he said to my mother, then he looked at me, "I didn't think you'd ever have the balls to walk back in here," he sneered.

"Well here I am! See those people outside, they’re there because her,’’ I pointed behind me to where my mother stood, “fucking mega-rich, famous, gay son returns,” I threw back at him.

He shook his head and stood up to face me, his face was filled with more annoyance and anger.

"Putain, il y en a sérieusement marre de tes conneries, ca n'arrête pas. Ca fait dix ans que je devrais être débarrassé de toi mais t'as beau être parti, tu continues de m'emmerder tous les jours, on a failli être obligé de déménager à cause de toi!"

I couldn't help but let out a satisfied chuckle. He had just told me that even though I'd been gone for ten years, I was still a nuisance to him everyday and that they almost had to move out because of me.

"Tes fier de toi?!" he said, asking if I was proud of myself.

"You bet I am!" I said with a smug smile.

I wasn't going to apologize for being successful. I knew what he was complaining to me about – the fans, the paparazzi.

It was one of the reasons why we had bought Rob's parents' a new place as soon as we had been financially able to do so – to make sure that they wouldn't be constantly bothered by fans making the pilgrimage to visit the neighbourhood and houses we had grown up in.

"C'est juste pas possible," he complained, still speaking French, which annoyed me because although I was pretty sure that Rob and my mother had understood him as well as me, his parents and Jordan couldn't understand all the bullshit that was coming out of his mouth, "Je savais que c'était une belle connerie de te laisser le garder!" he said directly to my mother and telling her right in front of me that he'd made a big mistake when he let her keep me.

"Vas y, arrête de parler en français pour qu'ils puissent pas comprendre. Si t'as quelque chose à dire, aies au moins les couilles de le dire devant tout le monde," I sneered, telling that if he had something to say, he should have the balls to say it in front everyone.

"Eh beh, tu parles encore bien Français, pour ça, t'étais pas si con, dommage que ça t'ai pas servi à grand chose! Et si j'avais eu quelque chose à te dire, je l'aurais fait depuis bien longtemps, tu connais la vérité maintenant donc que veux-tu que je te dises de plus? Je t'ai élevé, tu pourrais être un peu plus reconnaissant hein!"

I stood there, stunned that he was actually telling me that now that the truth was out, there was nothing he had to say to me, except that he thought I should be grateful that he had raised me.

"Reconnaissant? Mais reconnaissant de quoi?!" I exploded. "De pas avoir eu le droit d'exister, d'être obligé de faire tout ce que tu me disais de faire et de fermer ma gueule pour pas me faire frapper? D'être forcé de parler français. Fuck," I said, switching back to English. "Is being able to speak French something I should be grateful for? More like one more thing I was bullied into doing!"

"Putain, je t'ai élevé que je sache, j'avais pas à le faire, mais je l'ai fait, pour ta mère je l'ai fait. Tout l'argent que j'ai dépensé pour toi, pour recevoir quoi en retour? Que des emmerdes! Et en plus de ca, elle a fait de toi un pédé!"

I felt my anger rise as he told me that he didn't have to raise me but that he'd done it for my mother, he complained about having to spend money on me, only to be given nothing in return, only trouble. And on top of that, he thought I was gay because of the way my mother had raised me!

"Fuck, he should be grateful to you for all you did for him?!" Rob yelled, "Since when should anybody be grateful for being abused by a drunken, neglectful, ignorant cunt like you?"

"Actually, I am grateful for something!" I shot back, "Everything I've achieved, I've achieved it to prove you fucking wrong, so thank you for being such a shitty abusive father!" I said sarcastically.

"Everything you've achieved? What have you done? You and your useless dreams...," he said in English this time, obviously he wasn't impressed by our success. I hadn't expected him to be.

"Unbeliavable," I saw Jordan mutter to Rob.

That's when Edward, Rob's dad, decided to step in. He just walked past me and pushed me aside a little.

“You foul-mouthed, drunken ass-hole, who the fuck do you think you are?” he snarled and grabbed James by the collar, totally ignoring his own expletive-filled tirade, then pushed James hard away from him, making James stumble.

"What the fuck are you doing?" James asked Rob's dad, startled.

"I told you, don't you dare speak to him ever again, fuck, I'm so ashamed I once called you my friend."

"My friend? You haven't been my friend since the day you thought you had the right to tell me how to raise my kids!" James yelled.

"You're fucking right I had the right to tell you how to raise your kid! You weren't raising him, you were putting up with him and putting him through hell!" Edward yelled back.

James rolled his eyes and let out a deep huff,

"Come on, get outta here Ed, you've said it yourself, he's your responsibilty now and I don't want anything to do with him, and he was never my kid!" he said spitefully with annoyance to all of us.

"Fucking hell," I couldn't help but say.

I looked at Rob, who had the exact same expression as mine on his face, astonishment, as we understood why all those years ago, after Rob and I got together, my parents had completely stopped caring about where I was or what I was doing and that Rob's dad had obviously had something to do with their seeming total neglect.

"Yeah, we're gonna go." Edward said. "We're gonna go the 3000 square feet house my queer son and his husband bought for his dad, something you could've had if you hadn't been such a selfish piece of shit!"

"Yeah and see that car outside," I added, "mine, bought it with our useless dreams! And our useless dreams also bought a fucking enormous apartment in London and our useless dreams bought a ten million dollar Caribbean island home.”

"See if I care. I don't need your money," he said directly to me, "and neither does Amy!"

"Then I'm gonna continue buying her everything she needs and everything she wants," I told him condescendingly, "cause I've got millions in the bank and I can give her what you will never be able to give her. You see, my useless dreams have brought me everything you’ve never had, wealth, fun, friends, a great life and love. You, you're just a pathetic excuse for a man, so go back to your narrow-minded life, pig-ignorant life, drink yourself to death if you must but if I ever find out you’ve raised your voice let alone a hand to Amy or to my mother, my exceedingly expensive and exceptionally successful lawyers will make sure your sorry ass is hauled into court for domestic and child abuse.”

Then it struck me that all the time I’d been speaking I’d also been stalking towards him and I was looking down on him. I’d been the same height since I was sixteen, yet he’d always seemed taller than me, probably because he’d had all of us so emotionally cowed by his bullying nature.

"Oh, and before I forget, take a look at this,” I took my phone from my pocket to show him the photo I had as my cover picture, it showed Rob and I with my French family, we were all laughing,

“See this man right here?" I pointed at the screen, "he's my real father."

He seemed more than a little shocked as his eyes briefly settled on the screen, then he cast a quick quizzical look at my mother. It was exactly the reaction I had expected.

"And he's been more of a father to me in the two years I've known him than you ever were just like Ed always was . . . yet another thing my useless dreams have brought me, a real family, just like I had real parents in Rob’s.”

I turned to see Rob and Jordan applauding me, enormous grins plastered on their faces.

Rob held his hand out to me and this time every part of me wanted to take it in mine but I wanted more than that so I kissed him long and hard.

“Come on babe,” I said when our lips parted, “Let's get outta here and never come back again! I’m driving.”

Before leaving, I turned to my mother, she looked at me aghast so I did what I had never truly been able to do as a kid, I gave her a hug.

"Mum," I whispered. "if you ever wanna leave, I'll help you," I said and felt her nod so slightly it was almost imperceptible, "I'm sorry I came back," I added before letting go and walking out.

Rob and I didn't stick around much longer, we signed a few more autographs, took a few more selfies and then we got back into the car and drove off.


Dinner that night was so pleasant. Jordan arrived with Grainne and his parents, late as expected, and we all enjoyed a terrific Italian meal, somehow polishing off a few bottles of wine in the process and talking about so many different things. The meal ended with the opening of a bottle of champagne when Jordan announced his engagement to his folks, which he’d told us he'd do.

His mum became ever so slightly hysterical when Jord put Grainne’s ring back on her finger and we all laughed as she told Grainne that they hadn't suspected a thing - since she hadn't been wearing it during dinner.

Rob, Jord and I played a game of poker with Rob's and Jordan's dads and talked way past midnight. I had a great time – because I was with family and the moments spent with them were always happy. The simplest things in life always gave me the most pleasure, cooking a good meal, enjoying time with my friends, being with the people I cared about the most in the world. It really was the most important thing, family, friendship, love.

"I feel like I should be thanking you," I said quietly to Rob's dad as he stood in front of the fireplace with a glass of wine – watching the flames of the fire - after we'd both been eliminated from the poker game, Grainne and the two mums were deep in wedding talk no-one was paying attention to us.

"Hey kid," he said, and I smiled that he still called me that, "I did what anyone would have done given the circumstances. You're family. That's what you do for family," he said, putting his hand on my shoulder and patting it.

"I just wish I had done it sooner," he said, as if he was regretful, "but I didn't know that he wasn't your father, until – until you were thirteen or fourteen – Jane only told me when you started staying over even more," he confessed.

I ‘d always assumed that he’d known as long as Jane had and was surprised to find out that Jane hadn't even told him.

"It wasn't an easy situation to be in. But you can ask her, I'd always said to Jane, 'as soon as he turns eighteen, I don't want him stepping foot in that house anymore', he'd put you through enough, I wasn't gonna let him damage you more than he already had, physically or emotionally, you deserved better – so I just made sure he'd leave you alone, especially since, well you know.."

I nodded. I knew – since I was gay. I frowned at little,

"When did you know about Rob and I?" I asked softly with more curiosity in my voice than I had expected.

"Oh, way before he had the balls to tell me!"

I chuckled,

"Oh ok."

"Walls have ears." he smirked, "I didn't want James finding out for as long as possible. Cost me three broken ribs at the time," he said.

"What, are you serious? You fought him?" I asked, already feeling bad that he had – and that he'd got hurt because of me.

He nodded,

"It was worth it Mark, trouble is drunks are hard to put down due to being anaesthetised to the pain, but he did leave you alone!"

"If I'm not allowed to say thank you for being so caring and selfless, then I don't know what I can say."

He smiled,

"You should be proud of the man you've become. Life forced you to grow up a bit too fast but let me tell you, you're a lot stronger than you give yourself credit for. You've managed to come through all of that pretty much unscathed."

"Got a lot to do with you, Jane and Rob, if I have. I…"

"Do you remember what I said at your wedding?" he asked before I could continue, so I tried to recall his speech, "You and Rob, you give each other a lot of strength, and I don't know how you do it but you always seem to turn any negative into a positive."

"Well, I guess every situation is an opportunity to grow," I said.

He nodded,

"And you have grown a lot, both of you. I know you can handle anything life throws at you because of the love you have for each other. Keep doing the best you can and I promise you I'll always be there for you if you need me. You could never count on James, but you know you can always count on me so keep being strong, alright, you're doing great, I can't wait to see what you're gonna do next!" he said and gave me a warm hug before going to sit on the couch.


When Rob and I eventually went to bed, we cuddled and talked a little bit. Rob knew it'd upset me to talk about my parents so he steered clear of that topic – for the time being.

After a while, he settled behind me and spooned me. He kissed my shoulders and caressed my arm, chest and stomach. I was hard and so was he because the mere action of lying in bed together and touching each other was enough to give us both an erection but we didn't feel the need to do anything about it.

"How're you feeling?" he asked with care in his voice, clearly trying to give me the chance to express what I was thinking about the scene with James and my mother.

"Really good", I said, reassuring him.

I by-passed the subject I knew he really wanted me to talk about and instead began telling him about the conversation I’d had with his dad and he told me that he wasn't surprised by what he had done to protect me. He just wondered why he hadn't said anything to us at the time.

"I'm so proud of you, you know," he said, squeezing my body tight. "Don't you feel so much better now that you've had it out with him?"

I shrugged,

"I'm not giving you that satisfaction," I said and we both laughed a little.

"Fine. But I knew you could do it! We all did," he said with pride in his voice.

I turned around and my heart melted a little when I saw the loving look in his eyes.

"It's weird," I said.

"What is?"

"I feel – I dunno – all grown up!" I said, feeling quite content.

He smiled and gave a slight nod,

"I think I see what you mean."

I didn't want to talk more. It was really late and it felt like it had been a really long day. I was in no condition to have a deep and meaningful conversation about anything.

I was the first one to lean forward, my lips enveloping his. There was more passion in the way we kissed than I had expected and we began reaching behind each other's back and pressing our crotches together.

As we were kissing, a small laugh moved through Rob's lips,

"You know, I'm not sure I'm comfortable having sex with you with my parents in the house."

I chuckled,

"Nothing we haven't done before!"

"Yeah, but I'm not eighteen anymore, I don't think my dick can take over my brain as well as it did back then."

I let out a laugh,

"I think I'm too tired to even want to have sex right now to be honest," I said.

"So let's just keep making out," he suggested seductively, kissing my cheek, letting his tongue slip out a little, then moving to my chin.

I sighed as he started kissing my neck, moving down to my collarbone.

"I don't think I could ever get tired of making out with you," he told me and I opened my eyes to look at him.

He stayed quiet, contentedly gazing into my eyes. Part of me felt quite giddy as he grazed his lips against mine and we kissed again. We made out and massaged each other's bodies for a while, eventually Rob turned around and I was the one spooning him, my hand firmly rubbing his strong pectoral muscle.

"You're still hard," he murmured after a few moments.

"So? So are you –" I whispered.

"Well, make him go to sleep," he said with a giggle.

"I can't, he's got a mind of his own," I joked, nuzzling even closer to him.

"Then, tell him his best friend won't play with him tonight," he joked.

"Aw, are you trying to make him cry? Not the right thing to say to him!" I joked too.

Rob moved a little so he wouldn't feel my erection pressing against his flesh anymore and we settled down in a comfortable sleeping position. I was too exhausted to even realise I was falling asleep, all I could remember was feeling so many things. I felt love and I felt sorrow, I felt pride and I felt modesty, I felt hope and I felt a little anxiety for the future. I had always lived my life thinking that what I did could never be good enough, that I always needed to do more and to get better but that if I tried really hard, if I worked really hard, then I could get everything I wanted out of life – would that always be true? It had been thus far.

Falling asleep, Rob's body right next to mine, all I wanted was to live a life with no regrets and be happy with the person who I knew would always love me above all others.




"Guys I have an emergency," Rachel said as Rob opened the door to our apartment after she'd rung the bell, "Damon and I need to go to the gallery for a couple of hours, can Callum stay with you?"

"Yeah, sure he can, we're not going anywhere this morning." Rob told her, "Hey, Mag, look who's here!" he said to our two-year-old daughter.

"Yaaah," she hollered with the most adorable smile on her face when she looked up and saw Callum, who was now four and like a big brother to her.

"Yah," Rob and Callum hollered back in unison.

"We'll be back around eleven!" Rachel told us.

"Take your time, it's cool!" I told her.

She kissed Callum good-bye and picked up Magie,

"Hey beautiful," she smiled brightly and gave Magie a quick playful hug and a kiss; Magie laughed as Rachel tickled her a little and then she put her down.

I think it was fair to say that we loved each other's children as much as we loved our own. Rachel was pregnant again and expecting a girl this time, Dylan and Alicia had a three-year-old-son and Jordan and Grainne had waited a bit longer but now had a six-month-old daughter as well.

I watched as my god-son began playing with my daughter. Even though Rob and I had decided to use both our sperms and to let nature choose for us, we’d noticed as soon as she was born that, just like me, she had a tiny strawberry birthmark so high on the inside of her right thigh it was in the crease there. It didn't matter at all to me, but I knew that Rob loved the fact that she was biologically mine.

Now that she was a toddler, it was honestly hard to tell which of us was her biological dad. It all had to do with the egg donor we'd picked; Mag had some of my features, with big expressive green eyes like Rob's, a soft and cute baby face and light brown hair.

We hadn't been able to prevent paparazzi from photographing her so after weighing the pros and cons for a long time, we had finally decided to let the fans see her face and had shared a couple of pictures with her after her second birthday; it had been fun to see that people really couldn't decide whether she was mine or Rob's and everyone had a different opinion.

Her birth had been, as you would imagine, the most magical moment of our lives. I'll always remember what Rob had said when he'd first held her, because it was exactly what I was thinking too – that she looked so tiny and fragile, and perfect, and terrifying.

We had found a great surrogate through the highly reputable agency our lawyer had found for us. In the end finding her hadn’t been as difficult as we’d imagined, thanks to the efficiency of the agency; she'd got pregnant on the first try and really made the whole process a lot less stressful than what we had expected and now we were blessed with an amazing little person who we loved more than words can say.

Picking a name for her hadn't been too brain racking, it had already become an option the day I had first suggested it to Rob and became self-evident as soon as we held her into our arms.

Why she had arrived into our lives only two years after we'd had our first serious chat about the possibility of having a child…

Well I'm not sure if I'm ready to talk about it. I might need to let Rob tell that story.

It had been the worst three weeks of my life, and I knew for certain, the worst three weeks of Rob's life as well. But now, I was okay; I had fully recovered and I was almost thankful for what had happened to me because it had brought Rob and I the best gift life can give – our child.

We had a new album out but we didn't tour it, we did very little promotion and only played a few small gigs in Europe. First because we didn't feel ready or rather the need, to go back on tour and second because it wasn't an album meant to be toured. We had released it only because we wanted people to hear these songs and because we needed to let them go, as some sort of therapy.

Since the tour when we’d spent the biggest part of two years away from home, all our lives had changed dramatically, hell, three of us had married on that tour, one of us had found ‘the one’ and Rachel had become pregnant with Callum and the songs on our latest album – our first double – reflected that.

They were probably amongst the most soul-searching since the days when Rob and I were primarily writing about each other, before even our friends knew we’d become a couple, in reality before we had become a couple, only now our emotional horizons had expanded with what had happened to me and with the arrival of our daughter.

Besides which, with us all having young children none of us wanted to disrupt their lives by hauling them around the world for months on, and in truth, none of us could face leaving them at home. Of course, we did intend to tour again, but we needed to make sure it would be a tour that'd work for all of us, including our children.

I, above all the others, valued the stable home-life Rob and I had built and I was determined that our daughter would always have that – just like Rob had said during our first serious talk about having a child, that he wanted us to have the sort of family life he’d had when he’d been growing up, when all the time, he’d really meant me.

The end... unless I write more...

Copyright 2017, unilive. All Rights Reserved
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Chapter Comments

3 hours ago, Phoenix1977 said:

Great chapter. But I really want to know what happened to Mark ...

And I'd really like to know what readers think of the new chapters I've written 😅

All joking aside, I'd like to write more but I don't know when I will. Mentioning that something has happened to Mark leaves the door open and I can go back to the story if/when I feel like it. I still have Coldplay songs to use!! hehe

Writing the new chapters was a lot of fun but if I'm honest, posting them... not so much. I enjoy interacting with readers and it's important for me to know what they think and well there were less views, less votes, no comments except for Heifel, thanks again ;) so I'm pretty sure a lot of readers didn't like the Nick storyline, maybe that's just it, I must have lost them, or maybe they can't think of anything to say. Anyway, I guess it shouldn't matter but writing takes a lot of my time so will I write more? probably... when? I don't know.

Will you comment please if I do? :)

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2 hours ago, unilive said:

And I'd really like to know what readers think of the new chapters I've written 😅

Will you comment please if I do? :)

I know what you mean. It’s quite rare for people to react to stories. I have some here as well but people don’t comment often. And I’m no better 😃


I must admit I was surprised when new chapters started to appear but pleasantly surprised. Your story is well written and your characters are developed carefully over time. You allowed them to change within normal boundaries. Sometimes you follow a story and all of a sudden a character does a 180 on his or her personality. That makes is less believable.

I did enjoy the Nick storyline although I do feel it ended abruptly. You built it up slowly but steady and all of a sudden it was done. I would have liked to read more about the aftermath and how the guys were gonna handle working with him after he’s seen them naked. But I guess there was not much more to tell.

But as much I liked Nick I loved the fact Mark got closure with his “not-a-father” even better. Although you didn’t mention it a lot during the story you could always sense a kind of longing in Mark and I hope telling the SoB where to go will cure him of that. Unfortunately, it also proved to me my French is not a good as I thought 🤣


I do hope more chapters will come along although I can imagine at some point the story is complete. And that is ok, although parting is indeed a sweet sorrow 😃

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@Phoenix1977 That's the kind of feedback I'm talking about 👍😅

Really, you would've liked to read more about Nick? Well I might mention him again if I write more. The Nick storyline was all about the threesome hehe and the slow build up was a way to make that threesome really hot and a bit more special than what they'd done before... plus it allowed me to develop Mark and Rob's relationship, their life on tour with their friends and all that, and to show readers that they were happy and still were a strong couple, it was fun.

Yep, I guess the time had come for Mark to confront his "not-a-father". I didn't want to write it before and now I know why, it's much better that it happens at the end of the story, which is why I say that the story has come full circle, even I didn't know it'd end like this lol ...and with them becoming parents...

I'm sure your French is good, but it's my native tongue, so, easy for me. I know it's a hard language to learn!

Thanks again for responding ;)

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Well done and great job with the cliffhanger that's not a cliffhanger but the end of the story. I'm guilty, I don't respond to each chapter and I know I should.

Regardless of the comments, when I write, and I will be posting soon, I write because I have something that needs to come forward. I don't write for comments, neither should you. You have a gift and excel at the craft of wordsmithing!! 👍😉

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@drsawzall It is kind of a cliffhanger, but it's also the end of the story. I wanted to end it but also leave the door open for more. I do have an idea and if I write more, it'll be a flashback and something will happen to Mark. To quote you, do I feel like it needs to come forward, I'm still undecided. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don't... I'll probably miss the guys soon anyway and decide that I want it to come forward after all... we'll see! Thanks for your comment, it's just knowing that there are people reading tbh and interacting with readers is just fun.

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Except for the little cliffhanger about Mark!! 🤔🤔... It's the perfect ending to this beutiful story.  Mark got his closure with James (the ass!!) 💪 loved how he realished that James wasn't the tallest anymore. 

Full circle 👍👌 and love that everbody has kids now. 

Thank you for a really well written story and for introducing us to Mark, Robbie, Jordan, Damon and Dylan/U-N-I ❤

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4 minutes ago, heifel35 said:

Thank you for a really well written story and for introducing us to Mark, Robbie, Jordan, Damon and Dylan/U-N-I ❤

You're welcome, thanks for reading about them! 👍

Snl Thank You GIF by Saturday Night Live

Edited by unilive
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I read the story somwhere else for the 1st time, this is my second time around, sorry I  didn't leave any comments. 

The story is so well written, it's just like knowing the boys (and girls), being with them in person. 

Thank you so much for sharing 

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I love this story and hope there's a bit more to come.  I'm not ready to say goodbye to U-N-I yet. I love the relationship between Mark and Rob and how strong their connection and commitment to each other.  Wonderfully crafted.

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@Indigoskye I might write more, but I'm still undecided. Glad to discover a new reader even if it's the last chapter 😉

Edited by unilive
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Well you’ll have to write more, as we need to know what happened to Mark.  
Thankfully, he’s clearly recovered from it but inquiring minds want to know: I’m not certain which would be worse, a physical or mental attack.  
We’re waiting for you to share....”Rob” 😉

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On 7/18/2020 at 6:55 PM, unilive said:

@drsawzall It is kind of a cliffhanger, but it's also the end of the story. I wanted to end it but also leave the door open for more. I do have an idea and if I write more, it'll be a flashback and something will happen to Mark. To quote you, do I feel like it needs to come forward, I'm still undecided. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don't... I'll probably miss the guys soon anyway and decide that I want it to come forward after all... we'll see! Thanks for your comment, it's just knowing that there are people reading tbh and interacting with readers is just fun.

You can let the story of what happened to Mark be a small side story if you don’t want to add it here.

I understand why this feels done, as you’ve left the boys (excuse me, men) in a good place in their lives.  Mark’s issue will be intriguing because for all that could’ve happened to him with the childhood he had, he’s lived a very fortunate existence, well earned but fortunate.

If Mark’s incident involves James, I hope he’s dead.

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