Okay, I’m back on track….
Here’s my flash with the Free Fiction Friday Group!
IF YOU LOVE SOMETHING
( IYLS )
David and Jesse are childhood friends who get separated in their teens but meet up again at university in Newcastle, Australia.
They soon find out that though some things remain the same, other change… oh boy, do they change.
“Did you just nick food off my plate, Jere?” I demanded, wanting to sound serious, but my smile might have spoiled the effect.
“Yep,” he replied unashamedly, emphasizing the ‘p’.
I laughed, pulling my plate a little away from him and shielding it with my forearm. “Eat your own.”
Not a minute later, when I had momentarily let my guard down to have a drink, he stabbed his fork into another of my roast potatoes wedges, quickly shoving it into his mouth, making his cheek bulge.
His eyes smiled at me unrepentantly while he leisurely chewed, then swallowed. All I could do was stare as he smacked his lips and made an exaggerated ‘Ah’ sound. “What can I say? It tastes better off your plate.”
“But yours is exactly the same!” I protested, shaking my head at him.
“Doesn’t matter. Still tastes better off your plate.”
“Okay, I’ll swap with you, then,” I replied, still shaking my head as I reached for his plate.
His hand snaked out to lightly grasp my wrist.
“No point to that, Davie. I’m gonna keep eating off your plate, and you know you’re going to end up sharing with me, same as you always have, so you may as well just give in now.” He grinned knowingly, his fork hovering over a gravy-laden chunk of my roast beef.
Knowing he was right, I sighed in defeat, pushing my plate toward him.
Mum’s chuckle had us both turning in her direction. “Some things never change,” she said with a shrug and a smile.
CHAPTER 14: HAPPY PLUGGING
I just want to touch him to make sure he’s real, and not just the best damn dream ever, I told myself for the umpteenth time, knowing perfectly well I was full of shit. I wanted to touch him because Jeremy in charge of a motor vehicle was sexy.
He didn’t grip the wheel like so many young or nervous drivers do. He guided it with only two fingers at the bottom, his touch confident and sure. Of course, the fact that this had the heel of his palm almost touching the crotch of his jeans wasn’t helping me with my ongoing problem with my own crotch. His other hand rested casually on his leg until it was needed to co-ordinate with his pumping thigh to seamlessly change gears, or relieve the driving hand as he indicated at an intersection. I swallowed at the imagery of his pumping thighs, and strong capable fingers, squirming a little in my seat as I tried to discreetly adjust myself.
I sucked in a deep breath, my nostrils filling with his scent. There was no escaping it, not only was his every movement, no matter how small, sending it wafting across to me, it was there in the clothes that he’d lent me. God, it had even permeated the interior of his car. My sense of smell, I was fast discovering, had a direct link to my cock. It was as if it was a bloodhound hot on the trail of its quarry as it twitched and throbbed in my pants. Fuck, David. This has to stop. You have to get this under control. He’s your best friend and he’s straight, and you’re a poet and you didn’t even know it! Holy fucking shit. I’m going crazy.
“Davie, don’t go back to your place tonight. Stay at mine again,” he burst out suddenly, bringing me back to reality, and interrupting his own story about some Greek Islands he’d visited. His eyes flickered briefly over to me before returning to the road ahead of him.
My mouth was blurting out my agreement before my brain had even had time to register his question fully. “Okay, but can we still go to my joint so I can get my gear for uni tomorrow?”
“Sure. No prob,” he replied, and I could see he was as happy as I was; both of us grinning like a pair of idiots.
We talked, well, it was mainly Jere doing the talking, but we both laughed a lot, and I let myself look at him just about the whole time. That’s what you were supposed to do when someone spoke to you. It was just good manners. I was sure Mum told me that once.
The trip passed quickly and after only a few brief directions he was pulling into my driveway and we were opening our doors to get out. The sound of the security door opening with a squeak made me drag my eyes from Jeremy to the brightly lit veranda. God, I really should oil that for her.
I took in the sight of Mrs. Gilmore looking like a long stick of candy floss in her matching pink dressing gown and fluffy slippers, her silvery white head covered in small rollers the same color as her gown and held in place by multi-colored pins. I glanced back at Jere who was staring at her, his mouth agape.
Suppressing a smile, I admonished her, “Mrs. Gilmore, how many times have I told you that you shouldn’t come out onto the veranda when you hear a car or something pull up in your driveway. I could have been a burglar or worse!”
“And what do I always tell you in reply, sweet boy?” she chuckled, indicating with her hand that I should respond.
I laughed and shook my head at her. “Best defense is attack.” Out of the corner of my eye I could see Jeremy smiling at our exchange.
“And that you have the element of surprise,” I finished. Honestly she’d never learn.
“Exactly, my dear, and if that wasn’t enough, the sight of my sexy pink curlers should finish the job!” She shifted her gaze to Jeremy, her eyebrow lifted questioningly.
“Okay, you win!” I agreed, playfully rolling my eyes at her and giving an exaggerated sigh. “Mrs. Gilmore, this is my friend, Jeremy. Jeremy, this fearless warrior is my wonderful landlady, Mrs. Gilmore. Don’t tell your mother I said this, Jere, but Mrs. G. makes the best scones on the planet.”
“Pleased to meet you, Mrs. Gilmore,” he said politely, stepping forward and reaching up to shake hands with her.
“Ooh, now aren’t you a cutie. I can see why David likes you.” Before I could set her straight she turned to me, a big smile lighting up her face. “Why David, as impossible as it seems, I think he’s even better looking than Erik.”
Jeremy turned to me, a frown momentarily marring his handsome face before he cocked an eyebrow at me in query. The look that flickered in his eyes for the briefest of moments made me stammer nervously, “Um…”
“So, Jeremy, are you here to plug David?”
“Mrs. Gilmore!” I screeched, mortified and ready to die of embarrassment as Jere half laughed, half choked at her question.
“What, dear? You know I can’t say the ‘F’ word.” She gave a delicate shudder, continuing and seemingly oblivious to my horror. “Nothing wrong with plugging and it’s been a while for you. Honestly, you young’uns. You can be so brash and forward in some things, but then get all shy and silly over a little plugging. Plugging is as natural as breathing. None of us would be here without it!”
“Tell me again, why I like you so much?” I moaned at her as I hung my head, my face so red I could have camouflaged myself against Jeremy’s Mitsubishi, while Jeremy just about keeled over with laughter at my expense.
“Good to see you have a sense of humor, cutie. You might need it. Lord knows it used to sound like David was torturing Erik at times, but the boy always left smiling and always came back for more, so it can’t have been that bad.”
She chuckled, patting Jere’s hand as it gripped the veranda railing in an effort to stop himself from falling over. I wasn’t sure if the sounds coming from him were laughter or if he was gagging on his own breath.
“Mrs. G.,” I begged.
Turning to me she winked and grinned. “I like him, and David… it’s the secret ingredient I put in my scones, dear. That’s why you can’t resist me.” With a final wink and a chuckle, she blew me a kiss and headed back to her front door. “Happy plugging, boys!”
I trudged down the drive, my face hot with embarrassment. Jeremy’s laughter rang in my ears. He was as amused as I was mortified.
“Plugging?” he spluttered, and even without turning I knew he was doubled over with laughter. Ignoring him, I fished my keys from my pocket and inserted them into the lock.
It wasn’t that I didn’t have a sense of humor—hell, she’d said the same or similar to Erik countless times, and had teased me in front of Bobbi and Sam as well, but this was Jere. Jere, who I’d only come out to a matter of hours earlier. Jere, who was straight.
As I held open the door for him, he glanced at me and instantly went off into another fit of laughter and almost fell inside. “Oh my God, she thinks I’m going to… plug you!”
“Yes, I know, hysterical isn’t it?” I replied, my voice dripping in sarcasm.
“Don’t get all shirty on me, Davie. It’s funny. In fact, it’s hilarious.” He chuckled, wiping the tears from his eyes. “She’s bloody fantastic. She looks like a sweet, innocent nana and then she comes right out and asks if I’m going to plug you, like she’s asking about the weather or directions. God, I think I love her already!”
“They certainly threw away the mold when they made her,” I agreed affectionately. Deciding to get any awkwardness out of the way immediately, I continued, “So you’re not freaked out by what she said? I mean, I don’t parade my sexuality, Jere, but I don’t hide it either, so if you start hanging out with me, it probably won’t be the last time someone assumes we’re getting it on.”
“Davie, as soon as they see me around girls, they’ll soon figure out I’m straight. Don’t get your undies in a twist over it.”
Thirty minutes later, I was packed and we’d dragged my old board out and strapped it to his roof racks. I had to admit it looked the worse for wear with dust and cobwebs clinging to the old, dried wax covering its surface despite having been stored in a board bag. At least it didn’t have any dings. Jeremy brushed aside my embarrassment, assuring me he had wax and cleaning supplies back at his terrace that we could use to breathe new life into my sorry-looking old board.
Back at his place, we removed the leg rope which was deteriorated beyond repair, with Jeremy telling me he had a spare that I could use in the interim. Chatting, the banter flowing easily back and forth, we worked together to clean the board using repeated doses of hot water to soften the wax before carefully scraping it off using a paint scraper Jere found under the kitchen sink.
Once we had it back to bare, I watched a little enviously as he lovingly applied a fresh layer of wax to its surface. How long had it been since I’d felt loving hands on my body? Not for months. Over a year, in fact. Not since Erik. I bit back a sigh as a wave of longing spilled into my veins. It was all mixed up. I was yearning for my old love and my best friend at the same time, neither of which was available to me. It was pointless, so with an act of will, I pushed the feeling down where I wouldn’t have to deal with it.
Surveying our handiwork, he turned to me, grinning. “Excellent, we’re ready to rock ‘n’ roll for a surf tomorrow. Now all we have to hope for is a decent swell.”
While Jere took my board and propped it by the front door, I put his kitchen back to right.
“So, I reckon we’ve earned an ice-cream. What do you think?”
“There’s always room for ice-cream,” I agreed, returning his smile. It would seem his childhood addiction was alive and thriving.
While he got what we’d need, I filled a tall glass with hot water and place the scoop in it—a trick I’d learned from my mother to make the job of dishing up the ice-cream easier. Once again we worked together; me scooping and Jere coating it in a thick slathering of Ice Magic and crushed nuts. With both of us grinning from ear to ear at the sight of our filled-way-beyond-the-brim bowls, we headed for the lounge area.
“Times like this, I’m so glad I don’t live at home anymore with Mum scolding me for being a greedy pig.”
“I know! Mothers never understand a guy’s need for sugar!” Jeremy agreed, talking even as he filled his mouth with a huge spoonful of ice-cream. I grunted my agreement, my own mouth also full. “Hey, so tell me, do you have to work over the Easter weekend?”
I nodded, swallowing noisily. “Yes, usually. Why?”
“Well, me and some of the guys are planning on going on a Surfari, and it would be great if you could come too.”
I laughed. “Did you just say a ‘Surfari’?”
“Yep,” he replied, making a popping sound on the ‘p.’ “It’s a surfing safari, so… Surfari!”
I chuckled again. “I suppose I could ask Howie. Worst thing he can do is say, no.”
Next thing I knew, Jeremy had me on the phone and I was cajoling my boss to re-organize the roster so I could have at least part of the Easter long weekend off. In the end he gave me almost the entire Easter break—only needing me to come in on the Monday. Jeremy was fist pumping the air as he listened to my side of the conversation, and I couldn’t help smiling at his enthusiasm.
“Yes!” he cheered once I’d hung up. “Samurai Beach, here we come!”
“Crap! I almost forgot. I have to be back by three on Sunday because I have to take Laurence for his flight. Will that be okay?”
Jeremy frowned. “You can’t re-schedule him?”
I shook my head regretfully. “No. I can’t cancel on him again, and um, besides, I need the money, Jere.”
“Okay, so we’ll leave at lunchtime on Sunday. If we drive up on Thursday afternoon to set up camp, that will still give us plenty of time to surf.”
“Great,” I replied, relieved that he didn’t seem fazed about having to return earlier than he’d originally planned.
“Okay, but we’d better hit the sack now, if we’re going to catch a wave or two in the morning.”
Just the mention of sleep elicited a yawn, and I had to smile when I saw my yawn triggered one of his. Not thinking, I grabbed the pillow and blanket from the previous night that was still lying in a heap at the other end of the couch and began to set up a bed for myself.
“You don’t want to use the spare room?” he asked, gathering up our bowls.
“Nah, your couch is just fine. Very comfy, actually.”
“I know,” he laughed. “Plenty of nights I’ve crashed on one of them myself.”
“Why don’t you tonight?” I asked, suddenly feeling a little shy. I still didn’t want to let him out of my sight.
For a moment, I thought he was going to do his usual and tease me for my obvious vulnerability, but then he just smiled and said, “Sure. Be back in five.”
True to his word, he returned in just a few minutes clad only in a pair of red satin boxers. I tried not to look at the gentle sway of his cock as he made his way across the room.
“Here,” he said, thrusting a brand new toothbrush into my hand.
Murmuring my thanks, I used the downstairs bathroom to brush my teeth and take a leak. By the time I returned to the lounge, Jere was curled up on the same couch as the previous night, and only one floor lamp remained on. Sensing his gaze on me as I shirked my shirt and jeans, I felt a little self-conscious, which was stupid. After all, being straight he wasn’t going to be looking at me in a sexual sense, and on top of that it wasn’t as if I didn’t have a decent body. I had nothing to feel ashamed or shy about. Years of swimming had given me broad shoulders and narrow hips, and the Tae Kwon Do I’d been doing since puberty gave me long lean muscles. I mightn’t have big bulging biceps or pecs, but I was fit, toned, and strong.
Sliding beneath the bedding, I sighed happily, snuggling into the soft blanket. Jeremy switched off the light and for a few moments the only sound to fill the room was our quiet breathing.
And then he chuckled.
“I still can’t believe, Mrs. Gilmore thought I was there to plug you.”
“She’s a hoot, that’s for sure.” I snickered in return. “So you’re sure nothing she said bothered you?”
“Nah, but I just realized, she also insinuated that you had some, um, mad ‘plugging’ skills of your own.”
The teasing tone to his voice made the flush of embarrassment make yet another appearance in my cheeks, and once again I was glad of the dim lighting. “Um, yeah, if you’re going to do something, you might as well, um… do it well,” I mumbled, cursing myself for feeling shy and fluffing the line.
“Yes, hmm, you must do it pretty well if you had him screaming and coming back for more!” And then he fell off the couch laughing.
“Haha, serve you right,” I snorted, laughing as well now.
Still chuckling, he climbed back onto the couch and we fell silent again. He was quiet for so long I thought he must have fallen asleep.
“Davie?” his voice came from the dark, a soft, husky murmur.
“Hmm,” I replied a little sleepily, my eyes closed as I mashed my head into the pillow to get myself comfortable, a small smile playing at the corners of my lips. Does he talk in his sleep now, too?
“Who the hell is Erik?”
My eyes shot open, my heart pounding, all thought of sleep forgotten. I opened my mouth to reply, but shut it again, uncertain of how to answer.
Part of me felt reluctant to speak of Erik with him, and I wasn’t sure why. It wasn’t as if he was going to care about someone I’d dated in the past, and he’d made it obvious that he was unconcerned about my sexuality. Being straight, he definitely wouldn’t feel jealous or threatened by my past relationship. Still, there was no denying it—I felt hesitant.
“Davie?” he asked again, and I wasn’t sure if it was real or imagined that he sounded more insistent, as I fumbled for the right words, the silence dragging on between us.
Honesty, David. Honesty is always the best policy, Mum’s voice echoed in my head. Sighing quietly, I cursed my mother for yet another of her many little pearls of wisdom.
“Erik was my first boyfriend. Um, actually, he was pretty much my first everything,” I whispered, as a faint echo of the sweet sadness that thoughts of him always brought with them washed through me.
“First everything?” he asked, his voice low and questioning.
“Yeah. First guy I ever kissed. First boyfriend. First lover.” I could feel the heat flood my cheeks, and was glad of the darkness. “He was my first love.” I spoke the last part so quietly, my stomach in knots, that I wasn’t sure he would even hear me. Part of me didn’t want him to—I didn’t want him to crack a joke about it. Gut instinct told me that Jere had yet to fall in love, and though my broken heart over losing Erik may have healed, he was, and always would be, special to me, and I didn’t want Jeremy to make some smartass remark about him, or about my having been in love.
He was silent for so long, I thought he’d fallen asleep, and I wasn’t sure if I felt relieved or disappointed by that.
“What was he like?” His voice sounded a little odd, but I put it down to his drowsiness.
“Smart, funny, kind, generous, wise beyond his years, and bloody gorgeous,” I whispered, silently adding, a lot like you, actually.
The silence stretched between us again, broken only by the faint rustling of the blankets, and I didn’t know whether to fill the quiet or not.
“What happened to him? Why did you break up?” he asked so softly I could only just discern his words.
“We didn’t really break up as such, he had to go home. He was from Norway and only out here to study for a year.”
“Are you still in contact with him?”
Though I was thankful for the disguise of darkness for myself, I wished for light so I could study Jeremy’s face as we spoke. He was so quiet and serious, not having teased me once, that I felt unsure of him. I certainly appreciated it, but it was out of character for him, and I felt like I was floundering in unfamiliar waters.
“Yes, we email and Skype a bit, but not as much as we used to,” I answered truthfully, biting my bottom lip.
“Do you think you’d still be with him if he hadn’t returned to Norway?”
God, I want to see Jere’s face. His voice, his questions, everything about the conversation had my nerves stretched to their limit. Panic simmered at the edges of my mind.
“Yes,” I replied reluctantly, knowing it was true.
It was the truth, but I didn’t add the rest of that truth—that I would have felt I was betraying Erik with my attraction to Jeremy. That I may even have ended our relationship because of it. It would have been wrong to continue a relationship with him, when I was having the reactions I was to Jeremy. I would not have been able to do to Erik what my father had done to my mother.
His softly spoken, “Okay,” barely registered as the realization really hit me, like a blow to the gut. My attraction to Jeremy was such that I would probably have broken up with Erik, Erik who I’d loved. Dismay burned in my veins like a whiskey shot to an empty stomach. No! Fucking no!
LOL, I hope you enjoyed Mrs. Gimore!
I adore her and she’s actually based on a real person!
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