Castle Roland

Brave Lake Manor

by A.B.


Chapter 4

Posted: N/A

Characters in order of appearance:

Peter Jarrow: Ryan's and the twins' brother. He is 26 at the beginning of the story.
Ryan Jarrow: Peter's brother. He is 13 at the start of the story.
Christian and Malthe Jarrow: Peter's and Ryan's father remarried. His new wife already had them from her previous marriage. They are seven at the start of the story.
Rick Meyers: Close, personal friend of Peter from when they were three years old. He is 26 at the start of the story.
George Anders: Close, personal friend of Peter from when they were six years old. He is 25 at the start of the story.
Benjamin White: Ryan's best friend in the city. He is 13 at the beginning of the story.
Giles Daren: Brave Lake Manor's Buttler.
Charles Cox: Brave Lake Manor Chauffeur.
Harry Faring: Servant in Brave Lake Manor.
Eduard Williams: Appointed manager of the Manor and the Estate by Peter's father.
Joey Harrington: Owner of Joey's smoothies in Brave Lake Village.
Terry Jones: Teenager from Brave Lake Village, 16 yo.
Jason Cooper: New friend of Ryan just turned 13.
Maria Cooper: Waitress at Brave Lake Diner. Jason's sister, 23 yo.
Nicole Alford: Head cook at Brave Lake Manor.
Sebastian Tommas: New friend of Ryan and cousin of Jason. 14 years old.
Johanna Saunders: A girl Ryan meets in the mall, from a nearby village. Also 13 years old.
Jack Graham: Local Karate sensei. A total authoritarian character, bully by nature to a degree of psychopath.
Uriel Timmy Hastings: Teenager from Jack's dojo that decides to leave and start at Peter's, is the one from lake confrontation with Ryan and Terry that decides to leave and not get involved.
Enora Harrington: Ryan's girlfriend.
Ian Burges: Fire station Captain.
Owen Wright: Constable of Brave Lake Village.
Adam Foster: Christian's friend.
Amanda Raven: Malthe's friend from school

Sebastian's dilemma

It was a good thing the repairs on the plumbing and electrical circuits had just finished, and they could turn on the AC as to not have to labour under August's hot sun, bringing their stuff into their rooms and arranging the furniture under Peter's guidance. Ryan and the twins were for the moment arranging and decorating their rooms and the rooms of their floor whereas Peter was coming and going giving orders and supervising the staff and the movers as to where to put everything else.

The Manor was finally becoming a warm, cozy home, a great change from its original ruined, abandoned, unattended state.

Malthe removed the canvas from some of the crates and boxes in the first floor corridor and started reading the labels to find the boxes with his and Christian's stuff when he read "To Peter from dad" on a chest.

He called Peter and showed it to him.

Peter kneeled in front of it and touched the label hesitantly. He sighed, picked it up and started up the stairs to his room.

"Are you not going to open it Peter?" Malthe asked him, pouting his lips and brows in inquiry.

"No...not yet, I don't think I am ready baby bro," Peter answered and continued up the marble, wood and carved metal staircase.

Malthe shrugged his shoulders and went to help Ryan move some stuff into his room.

Two hours later Ryan stood in the middle of his room smiling, looking at it, having decorated it as he wanted it.

He went outside to the balcony to stretch and enjoy the sprawling woods in the distance.

"Ryan, I'm going to town to put up some fliers for a welcome dinner in a couple of days for us to properly meet everyone in town that wishes to come, want to come?" Peter called out to him from below in the Manor's marble-steps entrance.

Ryan smiled but nodded his head in the negative. "Nah, I haven't seen my friends in a couple of days what with all this work and all. I think I'll call Sebastian and Jason and see what they're doing for the day," Ryan answered him and got in his room to find his mobile phone.

"I will come with you Peter," Malthe said, getting in the front seat of the car.

"Malthe, back seat please!" Peter told him and Malthe shrugged his shoulders and climbed in the back seat.

"Hmmm...Sebastian isn't answering...what's with him the last couple of weeks?" Ryan thought as he terminated the un-answering call to Sebastian and pressed Jason's number.

"Hey bro, what's up?" Jason answered.

"Hey, want to come and swim in the pool or the lake?" Ryan asked him.

"Sure, Sebastian is with me, I'll ask him if he wants to come with," Jason said.

"Yeah, okay I'll wait for you in the Manor."

"Okays, see you later bro!" Jason said ending the call.

Ryan smiled and made one more call.

Peter and Malthe placed fliers all over town and then went to the diner to see Maria. Jack was there drinking coffee and eating some pie. Peter ignored him completely.

"Hello baby, how are you?" Maria greeted him.

He smiled and kissed her taking her in his embrace. She purred like a cat being stroked behind the ears and kissed him back.

"Good morning sweetheart, everything alright here?" Peter asked her with a look of contentment.

"Yes, everything's fine. It's actually a slow day so far. Want to stay and keep me company?"

"I'd love to, but I have to go to the fire department and police precinct. I want to see if I can make some arrangements, even under payment if needs be, to place some sentries and a fire department vehicle in the Estate forest and some of the entrances because of this prolonged, uncharacteristic heat wave. I don't want any forest fire."

Malthe was observing the people in the dinner silently. He saw Jack eyeing him with a weird look on his face, before he looked away and resumed eating his pie.

"Want me to come by the Manor later? Help with the decorating?"

"Thanks babe, actually we finished it all, but you are welcome to come and add your...feminine touch to it if you want, eat dinner with us and see a movie by the fireplace?"

"Sure, I'll call you when I finish my shift here."

They kissed goodbye, Maria giving Malthe a hug and a kiss on his forehead.

"Hello miss, my name's Peter Jarrow. Is the station captain or some senior officer here I can talk to?" Peter asked a young firewoman upon entering the fire station.

"Yes, sir, please come with me I'll show you to the Captain's office," she said and waved at him to follow her.

"Captain Burges sir, Mr. Jarrow would like to talk to you if you have a moment?"

"Sure, Cathleen, tell him to step in," said the Captain and stood up from his chair. Another man stood opposite to him.

"Mr. Jarrow, what can I do for you?"

"Good morning Captain. I live in the Estate with my brothers, just moved in a couple of months ago, and I wanted to arrange with you and the police if some sentries and a vehicle can be placed in the Estate forest and entrances to it until this heat wave passes, and if it is possible what forms I have to complete to have it done."

"Sure, it is relatively easy to be done, although for the part of the forest that is inside the Estate you will have to pay part of the wage and expenses like fuel for the hours that the vehicle and personnel will be there, since it is not public land."

"That will not be a problem Captain. I don't want a fire starting and ending up burning half the mountain and/or Estate along with the Manor because of the heat wave or any sort of accident."

"Well you're also in luck as the Constable happens to be here as well." Captain Burges pointed to the man sitting in the chair opposite his office.

The Constable stood up and shook Peter's hand smiling.

"Good morning Mr. Jarrow, I am Constable Wright. You can call me Owen though mate," the man said grinning.

"Pleased to meet you sir," Peter started saying but Mr. Wright interrupted him.

"Sir? Do I honestly look that old mate? I am only thirty!! Call me Owen."

"Fair enough. Do I need to come down to the precinct to fill out any forms?"

"Nah...there is the old mine road going close to those parts anyways. I always have a car going through it 'til the end of the jurisdiction. The road is in bad shape since the mine went out of business about thirty years ago and it's not safe to walk, but teenagers sometimes use it as a shortcut to Braybrooke. It is the closest village with a proper swimming pool, gym and football field. So I always have a car going up and down the road just in case, which means that I can have them detour and cover the area north and west to the Estate forest."

"That'd be perfect Owen, thank you."

"So this young munchkin, is he your son?" Owen asked nodding to Malthe's location.

"No, he is my younger brother and has a twin brother named Christian. Their mother married my father some years after the death of my mother and when they died in the theatre fire in early June she had placed instructions that in that event she wanted me to become their legal guardian. I also have another brother Ryan, we are biologically related. But I love these two devils no less," Peter said and tousled Malthe's hair. Malthe wrinkled his cute little nose and re-arranged his hair.

"I'm sorry to hear of your parents' deaths, but I'm glad that Mr. Williams has left. He was an as....well unpleasant behind of a person!" Owen said and chuckled.

"Yes he was. I do not know why my father trusted him to manage the Estate. I have placed a close friend of mine to look into it, just in case he embezzled any money."

"I heard that you've been going out with Maria from the diner," Owen said.

"Constable's ears miss nothing eh?" Peter chuckled. "Yes we've been going out for a month now, but I think...I hope it will become more serious than that."

"She's a great person! If I was only younger...and better looking!" Owen said and burst laughing, holding his burly belly.

Peter's smile faded for a second before it came back again.

"If you guys want you can come to the pub tonight with Maria, We'll be there for a couple of hours to watch the footy!"

Owen said.

"Thanks, but I think we want to stay in tonight, watch a movie or something, but we can do it another night?"

"Oh yes, definitely, we go there almost every night to drink something and unwind," the constable said.

"I need you to sign these papers Mr. Jarrow," the Captain said.

"Please call me Peter!" Peter answered, getting a pen from his suit and started signing where the Captain was showing him.

"Thank you Captain, Constable, I'll be seeing you in the pub!"

"Yes, I think we can be good mates."

Malthe got in the car, in back seat and started writing something when he looked Peter through the rear view mirror.

"Befriend him," Malthe said.

"He does look like a fun guy to be around," Peter replied looking at him through the mirror.

"Befriend him. You need friends who are not in the city," the boy said and returned to his pad.

Christian was hitting the ball against the wall in the pave way next to the Manor entrance.

"Where are the others Chris?" Peter asked him as he passed the ball back to the boy when Christian passed it to him giggling.

"I think Sebastian and Jason are in the pool and," he giggled for a while. "Ryan's with Enora in his room."

Peter left Malthe with his twin counterpart and headed for Ryan's room walking fast.

He knocked on the door but didn't wait for an answer before opening it.

Enora hurried off Ryan's lap. They were wearing their swimming suits, which wasn't all that much since Ryan wore his speedo and Enora her Brazilian type bikini. They had been kissing and Ryan's hands must have been on her buttocks as they landed on the bed when she got off of him.

"Enora, can you please wait for us down by the pool? I need to talk with Ryan for a moment," Peter said calmly but Ryan could see the anger in his eyes.

Enora left looking at Ryan guilt-full and sad. Ryan tried to comfort her with his eyes before he looked back at Peter now looking angry himself. The tent in his speedos explained amply of why.

"Have I or have I not told you not to have girls over when I am not in the Manor? And not to have your door closed or be alone with them?" Peter asked him placing his hands on his hips.

"We were not doing anything," Ryan tried to rebuke him unsuccessfully.

"I do not care. It looked like you were doing plenty enough Ry! You are both bleeding teenagers. It wouldn't take long for things to escalate with the raging hormones coursing through your teenage bodies!"

"We are fucking careful okay?! Besides she will barely kiss me and let me touch her....let alone anything else...," Ryan said, increasingly irritated and frustrated at the lack of actual sex.

"Yeah...and nine months later she delivers a you even have condoms in here?" Peter asked him surprising him.

" Would you let me do this if I did?"

"Of course not Ryan you're only thirteen! And so is she! I've told you no girls up here until you're eighteen with the door closed! It doesn't take much, one hormone-driven impulse and you're a bleeding father...AT THIRTEEN!!!" Peter exasperated.

"DON'T YOU YELL AT ME!!! YOU...YOU'RE NOT MY FATHER!!" Ryan yelled back but instantly regretted it. "I...I'm sorry...I just don't understand why you're behaving like this...if...when...if dad was still alive you'd probably be giving me condoms instead of this!"

"No...I probably wouldn't...maybe if I was fifteen and you were thirteen...but no...being ten years plus older than you Ryan I know why neither dad nor me would allow this. Look, I am not telling you no girls in the house, only no girl and you alone in a room with a closed or locked door. And that is non-negotiable until you're off to college."

"You do realise that if...when I want to have sex, I can go someplace else right?"

" do realise that I can ground you for the remainder of your childhood right? No dates, no mobile phone, no computer other than schoolwork research, no nothing! And if...when you do that do use a condom...or you'll be paying for child support on your own!"

"And how would I bloody well do that?"

"Not my problem, sell a body part! Or don't get anyone pregnant until you're ready to have a family! But for now you're grounded for a week starting tomorrow after school, oh and for each and every complaint or word coming out of your mouth the next hour in protest I'll be adding another month to it! Now go play with your friends!" Peter said with a finality in his voice that Ryan knew that would not budge.

"Whatever!" Ryan mumbled and left the room.

"I'm sorry Ry! I didn't want to get you in trouble," Enora told him, wrapping her hands around his neck making his face shine in a smile. She gave him a peck on the lips.

Jason giggled and splashed water on them breaking their kiss.

A water fight ensued with all three of them trying to splash each other, tickle each other until Enora found herself again in Ryan's arms and not long after they were kissing, tongue and all, moaning and giggling.

"Geez, you guys get a room!" Jason giggled.

"You're such a good kisser!" Ryan whispered to her ear blushing.

"You're not so bad yourself!" She whispered back to him, giving his waist a squeeze.

Sebastian didn't look as happy though when he spoke, "I...just remembered...I am expected to run!" he said, getting out of the pool and drying himself on his way to Ryan's room where his backpack and clothes were.

"What's up with him the last two or three weeks? It's like...I dunno...he's sad or something but doesn't want to talk about it," Ryan said, looking at Jason as if he was supposed to know the answer automatically since they were cousins.

Just then an unusually giggling Malthe wearing his red with blue stripes speedo jumped in the pool head first and a few seconds later his head popped out just in front of Ryan, who hooked his fingers under the boy's armpits and tossed him out of the water eliciting a scream of pleasure and a fit of giggles from the youngster.

Malthe came crushing down into the water just as Christian came running and laughing out from the large glass door wearing an identical speedo as Malthe did and jumped in the pool like a bomb shell.

"Hot! Hot! Hot!! YAAAYYYY!!!" Splash!!

"I don't know Ry, but knowing my favourite...well only cousin, something serious is bothering him. But he'll talk to us when he is good and ready to do so...unlike me, he is impulsive so it won't be long before he does, I think," Jason said, peaking Malthe's interest as the boy turned his head to better listen to him.

" I don't work like that...I don't let matters be and fester...I'll talk to him in two days at or after the welcome party," Ryan said.

"Yes, you are like a Juggernaut, an overwhelming, advancing force that gets what it wants," Malthe thought, his face lit up as if a missing piece of a puzzle had been discovered, not the first or the last time he would acquire that look on his face, in his life. Christian smiled at his mirror image, knowing full well that Malthe had had an idea or thought that of course did not share with others easily.

Enora started playing with the twins, aaawwing and cooing and giggling at how cute they were together.

At some point she gave Christian a kiss on the cheek, making him grimace as if he had drank a particularly sour lemonade, "Yuck!!! Girls!!" he said, poking Enora's ribs.

Ryan and Jason burst out laughing at both Christian's remark and Enora's mock, or not so much mock sad, pouty face.

Ryan swam to her and hugged her close giving her a kiss on the cheek to console her wounded pride.

She giggled and hugged him close as they started French kissing eliciting an "Eeeewwww!!!! Gross!" from Christian who splashed them, but they just ignored it completely.

Malthe got out of the pool and dried off before he dried up and walked in the Manor. He went to his room and got a folder with some papers he had torn off from his textpad, walked down to the library and found Peter.

He stood in front of Peter's chair and extended his hand holding the folder giving it to him.

"What is that baby bro?" Peter asked him taking the folder in his hand.

"That? That is a way to make grow and flourish in rain and clouds eternal that which needs sun and clear skies. Nothing is impossible Peter," Malthe told him, turned and left the library.

Peter opened the folder and skimmed through the pieces of paper. He didn't understand it all, but what he could understand made his jaw drop and look astonished at the departing small figure, speechless and awed.

Just when he was starting to despair on what to do with the agricultural lands of the Estate, and how to start producing a comfortable income to replenish what had been needed to be spent from the Estate money, Malthe provided him with the answer in only twenty pages of numbers, formulas, text and sketched chemical and engineering designs.

It didn't go unnoticed by Ryan, the twins and the servants that in the next two days until the welcome party Peter seemed to be lost in his thoughts, always in the library or in his study, writing emails, reading articles on the internet, taking down notes, but to Ryan he seemed the happiest he had seen him in years.

"Come on Christian, hurry up, guests are starting to come!" Ryan called out for the younger boy to hurry up getting ready.

Two days had gone by like a blur, what with the constant chatter between him and Enora, even under punishment as he was, he had managed to send texts from Malthe's or Christian's mobile phones, and helping out Peter. Time had flown by seemingly in a blink of an eye.

"Hello mate, you have a beautiful...home!" the Constable said. "Had a nice night yesterday, you and Maria look good together."

"Thank you mate. Yes my forefathers did a good job with the house, and thank you, we had a good time as well. Lots of fun and laughter is always good for the soul," Peter responded shaking his hand.

The constable was with another man, like he had been last night in the pub. Peter did not want to pry or invade his privacy but he was almost sure they were together in "that" sort of way.

Maria had already arrived from early in the morning to help with the preparations and was now by Peter's side holding his hand.

Jason was outside talking with Ryan and a couple other boys from his new school and/or grade.

Christian came down and started talking to a couple of boys his age.

People continued pouring in the Manor, expressing their astonishment at the beauty of the structure and talking with Peter and Maria.

"Hello Mr. Jarrow, I'm Harry Crawley, and this is my wife Erin. We have the accounting office at the village," a middle aged man with a long beard, short black and hazel eyes said extending his hand towards Peter.

"Peter, please. Glad to meet you Harry and Erin."

"Likewise Peter. Unfortunately our son Bryan could not come. He has been...distant of late, and moody, so we had to leave him with my parents," Erin said.

"Well you know how teenagers are..." Peter said assuming the age of their son.

"That's the thing, he is only seven and three months...aawwww you are so cute!" She changed the subject when she saw Malthe come by Peter's side and kneeled to pinch his rosy cheeks.

Malthe wrinkled his nose in frustration but giggled when she poked his ribs.

"Yeah Malthe and Christian are...cute...and twin troubles let me tell you!" Peter chuckled and tousled the boy's blond locks.

"He has a twin brother? Awww they must be so incredibly cute together!"

"Excuse my wife, she tends to go...babyish when she sees cute...creatures," Harry said chuckling.

"What could be impacting his behaviour so young that he is distancing himself?" Malthe asked.

The Crawleys looked at him with an incredulous look on their faces.

" not know Malthe, why do you ask?" Erin asked him smiling.

Malthe shrugged his shoulders and walked away.

The Crawleys looked at Peter, "Don't look at me, Malthe' say the least!" Peter chuckled.

Just then, as Ryan, hand in hand with Enora, and Jason got in the living room Sebastian arrived with his parents.

His parents started talking with Peter and Maria whereas Sebastian walked towards his friends, his head hanging low.

"Thought you wouldn't come you decided to come to the party? You know you've been an ass lately," Ryan told him.

"I...I know and I'm sorry, I've just sort of been dealing with...stuff...I'd like us three to talk if you've got some time?" Sebastian said looking slightly up.

"Well yes of course you've been dealing with stuff. I just don't understand why you had to, alone? Both me and Jason would listen to what troubles you, you twat!" Ryan told him playfully smiling. "We'll talk after the party so that we're alone okay?"

"Okay...I guess..." Sebastian said shrugging his shoulders.

Just then Timmy walked in with his parents. He waved at them and walked to them.

He said hello to everyone present but his eyes were as if glued to Sebastian, checking him out. Sebastian was also checking him out, their eyes locked on each other's bodies for the umpteenth time in their lives. Timmy moved his eyes upwards from Sebastian's bulgy crotch and their eyes met, causing Timmy to bite his lip instinctively and both to giggle.

The party was well on its way, people talking to each other, drinking and eating, Christian running around with new found friends, Ryan talking with other people from his new school, making new friends even if Jason and Sebastian held brotherhood status by now and would remain his best of friends for life.

Some girls from his grade or even a grade below or above tried to gain his attention, but Enora made subtly sure that his attention towards them did not go beyond friendly banter and idle chat between friends or even better yet, acquaintances.

With the heat off the scales even for August it didn't take them long to start jumping in the pool with swimming wear or underwear on, as the adults walked and chatted about, enjoying Mrs. Alford's cooking and the Manor's interiors.

"Hello, my name's Amanda, do you want to be friends?" a girl asked Malthe. He looked at her, from head to toe. She had blood-crimson red pigtails, pimples in her plush cheeks, was about his height and very lean, was wearing a white and lilac skirt dress that fell right above her knees, and her green eyes sparkled with youthful energy. Her whole body seemed to vibrate with it in fact.

Somehow it made him grin ever so faintly. He shrugged his shoulders but said nothing.

" don't talk too much? Well that's perfectly okay, 'cause I talk more than enough. My daddy tells me I talk enough to deafen an army, but you see I am only eight and I like talking, so what's your name? Are you a guest or are you staying here? How old are you?

"You don't look older than me. Do you have any brothers or sisters? I am an only child," she said proudly in almost one breath making Malthe giggle.

He shrugged his shoulders and blushed. "Well...I am almost eight years name's Malthe and I have a twin brother called Christian, although he thinks girls are yuck, and I live here with my brothers...older brothers..." She interrupted him.

"Well I think you're cute and cuddly! And I want us to be friends. Now come on let's go play somethin' already!" she said cheerfully and took him by the wrist, tugging him along.

Malthe shrugged his shoulders and followed her.

Peter chuckled, as he had witnessed the whole exchange. He knew instantly that she would be a good friend to Malthe and even more as they got older and puberty hit them, well like a sledgehammer like most boys at least, but girls were not immune to its effects. After all it is an age where the human body transforms from its adolescence innocence to its adult maturity and the brain and personality try to follow suit and define what and who they are in this chaotic world.

He smiled as he turned his attention back to his love. He had known her only for a couple of months but she was slowly becoming increasingly important to him, and even though he rarely yet admitted all this to himself, much less to her when he gazed upon her he knew this to be increasingly true. He gave her hand a squeeze to get her attention.

As he was playing with Amanda, Malthe kept seeing Sebastian trying in vain to not ogle at Ryan. He kept trying to get his attention from Enora, and others that were becoming his friends, even though not close friends.

In the eye of a careful and methodical observer, Sebastian would almost become comical at times in order to try and achieve his goal, even though in the whole chaos and mayhem of the welcome party, with all the buzzing noise of the hundreds of people all talking at the same time, glasses touching wood and metal and marble, shoes on the marble and wooden floors from people walking and children running around, yelling, screaming, laughing, tableware being used to pick up food from plates and into mouths.

Malthe told Amanda that he'd be back in a second and walked slowly to Sebastian. He tucked at his wrist until the older boy got the message and kneeled down to his face level. Malthe held his t-shirt collar and brought Sebastian's face closer then he tilted it with his hand from the chin and brought his lips to Sebastian's ear.

Whatever he whispered to his ear was lost to everyone else other than him, but it was not intended for anyone else to hear.

Sebastian shot up as if touched by a powerful electric current and looked straight at the younger cherub's eyes. His eyes were surprised to say the least, if not terrified as if Malthe knew and had revealed to him his darkest, deepest secrets.

He looked around, his eyes now lost, pupils dilated, almost unresponsive to external stimuli. His eyes watering up fast, he shot out of the living room like a bullet and started ascending the stairs to the upper floors.

Ryan saw the whole exchange and tugging on Jason's wrist, he excused himself from everyone else nearby and followed his best friend.

They caught up with him on the last step to the first floor. Ryan grabbed his elbow and pulled him in his room, shoved him on the bed.

It was not as quiet here either, the sounds of the welcome party travelling upwards, obviously from the lack of proper soundproofing material inside the walls. Something that repairs could not have fixed without tearing up the walls and rebuilding them after applying the soundproofing materials.

"Okay what's going on Sebastian!? What could Malthe have possibly told you to make you almost cry and run as if someone had killed your favourite pet or something?!" Ryan asked him sitting next to him. Jason kneeled in front of them.

"Nothing..." Sebastian mumbled unconvincingly.

"Oh come on!! You've been sad and distant for two or three weeks now. And increasingly more every day! Tell me what's going on mate! You know I'm not going to judge or criticise you! Talk to us, Sebastian. I am your best mate and Jason is your only cousin. We are not going to get angry or something!" Ryan kept pressuring him, rubbing his shoulder for comfort but drilling him until Sebastian had had enough without even realising it and in a characteristic impulsive move he looked up almost angry and yelled at them.

"I am gay alright!" he snapped at them almost as if he had dropped a bombshell or divine punishment upon himself and/or his friends, almost expecting them to at least hate him, push him away and never want to talk to him again, maybe even slap him.

But of course in his panic driven thoughts he had not encountered for what actually happened.

Ryan burst laughing, "Oh come on! I've told you before that just because we fool around some due to...lack of girl-action does not make either of us three gay!" he told him as if expecting this insurance from him to declare the subject finished and done with.

"No I's just I know I'm actually gay Ry..." Sebastian mumbled.

"Oh...well was that all? This is why you've been like this? I told you before and I'll tell you again, you are my best mate, or at least one of the two and I honestly don't mind or care if you're heterosexual or homosexual or anything that involves bipedal human beings of more or less same age as you consenting individuals mate! So lighten up already!" Ryan told him matter-of-factly. Jason nodded his head in complete agreement.

Sebastian hugged him close and tight and cried softly, not tears of sadness but of relief and even joy. "I have been so worried over all of this, about the possibility of being gay, and then actually accepting I am gay, and how you two would my parents will react...when I come out to's just been all so...overwhelming...I'm sorry if I was a complete arse!"

"Nah...don't sweat it, we're mates! And if your parents love you as much as I think they do from what little I've interacted with them, they won't much care either. They might sort of be shocked at first but I think they'll be okay in the end," Ryan told him, squeezing him, hugging together as they were. Sebastian saw Jason nod in agreement as his head was tilted towards his cousin.

Ryan pulled him away after a few more seconds, "So...what did Malthe whisper to you that brought about this...upheaval?" he asked him, his interest now peaked at this.

"No...I's personal Ry. I think for now I'll keep it to myself, maybe in a few months or years I'll tell you, okay?" Sebastian thought and answered him seriously.

"Sure, are you okay now?"

"Yes, I'm worlds better mate! I was so worried you two would reject me being gay...yes I'm better than okay now! Thanks!

Uhmm...Jason... you haven't really spoken...are you okay with know being gay?" he asked him.

"Sebastian you are my only and favourite cousin. I don't give a fuck what you like fucking in your bed, in the privacy of your...or his room...whoever that "him" will be! Just don't be as loud as when Ryan sucks you okay? You wouldn't want Aunt Miriam catching you in the act now do you?!?!" he said, giggling at Sebastian while moving his closed fist back and forth close to his mouth and moving his tongue inside it in such a way that it bulged his left cheek outwards. It made Ryan giggle infectiously as well.

Sebastian slugged his shoulder. "Fuck you!" he said, but he was also giggling as he now hugged his cousin for a second or two before releasing him.

"Shall we go down to the party now? I am starving!" Ryan said, smacking his tummy.

"You're always hungry!" Sebastian said giggling.

"Yeah well what can I say...I'm a growing teenager!" Ryan replied poking his tongue out.

"Growing...yeah to which direction is what we'd all want to know mate!" Sebastian said and ducked to avoid a friendly punch from Ryan directed at his shoulder.

They walked downstairs.

"You must be Ryan! Katelyn and Frank have told us so much about you! They absolutely love your children's aikido class!" a woman told him. He knew her to be the mother of eight year old Katelyn and six year old Frank, two children who attended the children's class in their dojo. Peculiarly although he had waved at the woman a few times he had never up to now talked to her.

"Well it must run in the family, my son Uriel has never been as happy as from when he started lessons with Peter." He knew the man that spoke as Timmy's father, only his parents really called him Uriel, as he preferred been called Timmy by his friends and teachers. He found Uriel very...uptight and "old" and well to call things as they were, Uriel is the name of an archangel in the Judaism version of the gospels and genesis. It was weird that they had named him so since they were neither Jews nor very religious. Ryan could only guess that they liked the sound of it.

"Thank you ma'am," Ryan said, blushing. He really didn't think he was all that great a teacher in Aikikai yet, but obviously the children thought otherwise. Now that he thought of it better, he was calm like his brother, always explained something as many times as needed without complaint or ridiculing whoever asked, had zero tolerance for ill-intended tease in the class or in the locker rooms and he always smiled.

"John told me that he wished that all his teachers at school were as patient with him as Ryan is," another woman said.

John was a rather slow but very polite and adorable nine year old in the children's class. Ryan was blushing profusely by now and scratched the hair on the back of his neck nervously, unused to this much praise and compliment directed at him from adults.

"I...uhmm...thank you...I'm just not used to receiving so many...compliments and praise from adults...I guess..." Ryan said making them laugh. Uriel's father gave him a friendly slap on the back and left.

Ryan searched and found Enora with his eyes and walked to her, entwining his hand in hers. She smiled and squeezed his hand.

Peter was talking to and with everyone, with Maria glued to his side. Ryan thought they looked good together, a good match and a happy one.

Just then Peter saw Malthe run towards his direction and try and hide behind his large figure.

"What is it Malthe?" he asked the little boy bending down to his eye level.

"No! Stand up right! She will not leave me alone! She constantly talks and tries to hug me! Maybe Christian is right after all and girls are yucky.." Malthe said in his child's voice.

Peter's laughter boomed across the large living room, Malthe looked at him at him inquiringly.

"Oh Malthe my boy, girls tend to only "stick" more to you when you ignore them. You are a boy and you will be a man. Go to her and explain how you feel, be friends with her, or don't but do not ignore her, now off you go," he told the boy and gave him a gentle push on the shoulder.

Malthe shrugged his shoulders, hang his head and started walking towards the other side of the living room.

It was some time later when Sebastian was swimming with some other teenagers from their school, splashing and horsing around like only teenagers know how when Timmy jumped in and hugged him from behind dunking him in the water.

They came out for air, Sebastian turned round to face his "assailant" to find a grinning Timmy staring at him.

"Uhm...can I...uhm...want to tell you...ask you something..." the boy told him.

"Sure...I guess...should I get Ryan or Jason?" Sebastian asked him timidly.

"! I want to tell you something, not everyone, I mean they have become my friends but I just...want to talk to you right now..."

Sebastian shrugged and jumped out of the pool, giving his hand in aid as he lifted Timmy off of it. Timmy walked fast trying to find a secluded enough room for them to talk and he found it in a small storage room next to the library.

They stood facing each other. For a few seconds there was an awkward, nervous silence, then Timmy sighed and fidgeting his hands on the waistband of his swimming trunks not knowing what to do with them he started talking.

"I...uhm...shouldn't have, but I ehmm followed you three upstairs earlier...I sort of...heard don't be afraid, I will not tell anyone anything...and I really, really do not mind since I am also gay," he said in one breath and really fast. "I've known since I was ten and I've...well sort of...have had a crush on you since I was twelve...but you know until now I really didn't know how or what to say to you...and then I started going to Jack's dojo and unwillingly hanging out with that jackass Terry and I thought I would never have a chance to...tell you...I think I was also afraid of you being straight and outing me to the whole town and/or school so I said nothing...but then today I saw you running upstairs almost in tears and just as I was coming to see if you were alright, Ryan and Jason got to you first...and know the rest..." Timmy said as fast as he could, taking in breaths only when he had to breath.

Sebastian was completely dumbfounded and speechless, for the longest of all five minutes that to the two teenage boys seemed like an hour neither of them two said anything then Sebastian found his tongue again.

"I...I...guess I'm honoured you...uhhh...have a crush on me and trust me enough to tell me all this...I will not tell anyone either...I'm guessing you'd like us to be...sort of boyfriends...?" At the mention of this Timmy's face lit up like a Christmas tree. "Well I would not have a problem normally...but...I am sort of confused and complicated at the see have this huge crush on someone else...but I don't know...or think that he will ever reciprocate my feelings as I would like him to...can we...uhmm...stay...close friends for now and see where this goes?" Sebastian said and rubbed the back of his head and neck nervously.

Timmy grinned broadly, "Okay, yes!" he said and gave Sebastian a peck on the lips before leaving the small storage room.

Sebastian was left looking flushed and surprised but with a faint grin of happiness decorating his lips.

Ryan was talking with Peter, Enora, Timmy's parents and a few others when he saw Jack enter the Manor.

He winced in anticipation of trouble from the man and tugging on Peter's wrist he nodded with his head towards Jack's direction.

Peter nodded back calmly and walked to him standing in his way.

"Beautiful house you have there...mate...who did you steal it from? AHAHHAHAHA!!" he laughed at his own joke, or at least what he perceived as a joke since he was the only one who laughed.

Peter stood in front of him straight and fearless, he ignored the "joke."

"If you're here to enjoy the party and have fun you are welcome to do so, but if you're here to intimidate anyone or cause trouble then please leave," he told him, his hands on his sides.

Jack sniggered, "Oh I will have some fun alright!" he said, looking towards the twins, then his eyes shifted to Timmy and his face contorted with rage.

"YOU FUCKING TRAITOR! YOU DARE LEAVE MY DOJO FOR THIS...SISSY PUSSY'S ONE?!?! AND YOU DARE TAKE MORE PEOPLE WITH YOU, YOU FUCKING TWAT!!" he bellowed and started walking towards the teen but Peter side stepped and got in his way again. Everyone was looking at them now, the room having gone completely silent.

"Go away or the Constable is here and I'll have him arrest you for trespassing and psychological abuse towards a minor," he said, looking straight at Jack's eyes.

"Go or I will arrest you," the constable said, moving to Peter's side brandishing his hand-cuffs that he apparently had with him even though he was not on duty.

Jack looked back at him never breaking eye contact, "You wouldn't behave so...high and mighty if your house and family had would you mate?" he asked Peter in a cold, menacing voice.

Peter closed the distance between them in a flash, his face pale with rage. He didn't touch Jack but his words boomed like thunder in the silent, large living room even if he did not raise his voice.

"I am not your mate, never will be. And you can fuck with me all you want but if you dare to so much as touch a single hair out of my brothers' head or my livelihood and I will tear you limb to limb."

"Whatever!" Jack said and left breathing erratically from the rage.

Peter sighed and returned to his guests.

A week later, Ryan was in his room, lying on his bed talking with Enora on Skype.

"They look so cute together, don't you think?!" she asked him giggling.

"Yes, I think so, I don't know about cute, but they do look good together," Ryan answered back. Sebastian had told Enora that he was gay the day after the party and then had hooked up with Timmy a couple days later, officially announcing their boyfriend status to his closest friends only.

"Do you think Jason could be as well?"

Ryan laughed, "nah...I think he's in the "I like girls" camp."

She giggled, "Well I think it would be hot to see two boys kissing or you know...sucking...I've never seen that before!!"

she said.

"Wait...what? Like you've seen a girl giving a boy a blowjob?!" Ryan asked smirking and surprised.

She shrugged her shoulders and giggled, "Ask no questions and I shall tell no lies!" she said.

"Oh come on!! You can't drop that bombshell and leave me like that!" he said, feigning hurt.

"Well...I've seen a friend of mine do that once, yes..." she said, trailing off.

"Oh come on!!!" Ryan exclaimed laughing.

"Well I'm not going to tell you who it was obviously!!" she said, poking her tongue out at him.

"I don't mean that silly!!" he said un-wanting to ask again his original un-asked question.

"No I haven't done that yet you shit! I'm saving...all of that for someone special!" she said almost seriously but there was a hint of lust in her eyes.

" that special one?!" he asked with equal measure of lust and expectation.

She just shrugged her shoulders and giggled. Just then Jason logged in. Ryan groaned in Enora's non-answer and invited Jason to the conversation. He knew he would not get much more out of her on the subject anyways.

"Hey Jason mate!" Ryan said when Jason's webcam turned on, he was also lying in his bed.

"Hey, how are you two lovebirds?" Jason asked giggling. Enora poked her tongue blushing.

"Yeah, you only dare say those things when you're at a distance!" Ryan said laughing.

"Of course! What am I crazy?! So is the training on for tomorrow?"

"Yeah, only I'll be doing it, we'll go over the very basics."

"What about Peter?"

"He is busy with the Estate, something about having to plant grapes before it gets too cold, and having to hire workers and contact barrel makers and bottle makers and so forth. He'll be busy this week and the next."

"Oh, cool! Well you know that stuff good anyways so a bit of a revision won't do us any bad." By us he meant of course everyone who had just started in Peter's dojo and hadn't done Aikido before. It was slightly easier for those who came over from Jack's dojo, but karate and Aikido are two entirely different martial arts, with different philosophies, techniques and goals.

"Yeah, I think that's why he asked me to do the classes, so that they are not lost and you all get to revise stances, techniques, names, terminology and stuff. How do you like it so far?"

"Oh I definitely love it! I like the defensive aspect of it and using the strength and muscle of the assailant against him, or them....and of course not having to hurt anyone if I don't want to," Jason said.

"Sebastian and Timmy are spending a lot of time together eh?" Enora asked giggling.

Jason giggled, "Yeah, you know...being boyfriends and you think they know...?"

"Well...why not, we three have fooled around with each other and we weren't boyfriends..." Ryan said, suddenly realising that Enora could also hear him. He blushed all sorts of different shades of crimson and felt his ears heat up.

Enora giggled, "Aaww...yeah well you and my girlfriends also...sort know...mess around...experiment...with each other."

Both Ryan's and Jason's eyes bulged outwards, " do? How...when...I mean...ehhh...I just...I mean it hot and sexy!!! When can we watch?!" he said. Both of them unconsciously rearranging their packages as they had stiffened up from the information Enora provided them. She was biting her lower lip.

Christian was walking in the forest picking up insects and placing them back down again after careful inspection.

He giggled when a bunny rabbit came closer to him, sniffing at the air with his nose. Christian removed a carrot from his backpack and slowly stretched his hand towards the animal.

The rabbit took a hesitant step and sniffed at the carrot making Christian giggle at the motion of it and then taking another step he took the carrot in his furry paws and started nibbling at it.

Christian petted its head slowly and giggled.

He got up and started walking towards a large tree. He had come to know that the trunks of these large trees possessed all sorts of goodies near their roots especially if they were hollow inside.

He kneeled by the tree's roots and carefully started picking at the dropped leaves and stones. The tree didn't have a hollowed out hole but the leaves and stones on the ground were also treasure troves for the young boy's imagination and likeness of small animals and insects.

He knew though that not all insects shared his likeness of them and that some were poisonous and so with carefulness and slow movements he picked the leaves and stones up and looked under them for signs of what he was searching for.

Had he not been so focused on what was under the stones and leaves he might have seen the shadows moving behind him, human at first stepping silently, like evil spirits from fantasy novels intent on causing harm, leaving their darkened, evil hue on the surrounding trees and forest floor. But the owners of the shadows did not go for the young boy, instead after throwing a laugh full of malice and hatred they headed off to a deeper part of the forest and there they unleashed their scorn upon the green and good.

The phone rang. Peter placed his book on the study and picked up the landline phone.

"RYAN! CHRISTIAN! MALTHE!" He heard Peter yell at him and the twins from below the stairs.

"I'll be right back guys, one sec," he said to Jason and Enora and leaving the laptop on the bed he jumped up and walked fast to the stairs.

"Hey, what's up bro?" he said all merry to Peter. His face changed the moment he saw the worry on Peter's face. Before he could ask what was happening Peter spoke.

"It was the Constable on the phone, there's a fire started on the Estate forest, where are the twins?"

"What? Ehh...Malthe should be either on his room, library or pool, Christian...eehh...if he's not in his room or pool he's either on the lake or forest...and no actually now that I think about it he only goes to the lake with Sebastian, Jason and forest...oh god!!"

"Do not despair, there's more than a few thousand hectares of Estate forest and the firemen are already on it.

Ryan ran back at his room wearing his shoes as he entered.

"Guys I have to go, there's a fire on the forest and Christian is in there..." Before they could respond anything he turned off the laptop and ran down the stairs.

"My Christian is in trouble. Help him!" Malthe stated coming out of his room. His eyes watering up with tears.

"Don't worry Malthe, everything will be okay. Stay in the Manor!" Ryan told him as he descended the stairs with quick double-step movements.

Christian smelled the smoke, faintly at first, coming from afar but then it started becoming more pronounced, closer.

He got up and looked around, he could see no smoke, but the smell of burning wood was there, burning, infringing at his nostrils.

He decided to err on the side of caution and head back to the Manor, but then he saw the bunny heading towards were the smoke smell was heavier.

"No! Bunny wait, come back, it is not safe there!" he yelled at the animal as if it could understand it and not go towards the smoke.

He ran after it, to catch it, to grab and take it to safety, but the rabbit unable to understand the human worry depicted in Christian's face, unable to understand why that large, bipedal, strange looking animal ran after it and scared already by the smell of burning wood and grass, it gave a jolt and started running as fast as his legs could carry it.

Christian ran after it, unable of course to catch up with one of the fastest running animals on the animal kingdom. It drove him, however, deeper into the forest and closer to the fire until he saw it in front of him, and felt the blazing tendrils' increasing warmth on his forehead as if a burning blanket was wrapped around it.

The fire was burning through the undergrowth like an insatiable monster, spreading to the tree trunks, and then to the branches and leaves, gaining speed from the increased temperature, fueling itself the more of the forest it consumed. The sound was increasing in volume as well, the buzz from the hot wind and cracking wood as the liquids inside it boiled and burst open into vapours and smoke.

Christian froze in place seeing that monster running towards him at increasing speed. The heaviness of his breathing and increasing cough snapped him out of it. He run at the opposite direction in full panic mode, tears now running from his eyes, evaporating as the fire crept closer.

It was then that he realised that he was in fact, in his panic and fear, going in circles, never keeping a straight line through the burning trees and thick smoke. Completely disoriented he started feeling faint from the increasing lack of oxygen and thickening smoke around him.

Ryan got in the car and they drove to the outer main gates of the Estate. There was a fire department vehicle there waiting for them.

Peter talked with them opening the doors. They told him that two other vehicles had been dispatched to the other side of the forest, one from the abandoned mine road and one from one of the other entrances in the Estate forest. And that one more plus two squad cars were coming right behind them.

"Ryan I want you to stay here and direct them to the forest or the Manor," Peter told him.

"What? No! I want to help find Christian!" Ryan protested.

"No! I will not have to worry about you as well! There will be a total of four fire department vehicles on scene, plus the police. You are not trained and you are only a child, you will wait here and that's final," Peter told him in a strict tone of voice.

Ryan groaned but stayed behind. He climbed up the wall and sat, his legs dangling on the outer edge.

The flames from what the firemen spoke over their radios was better than it looked, not having spread too much as of yet.

The Captain was actually on scene organising everything so that as little forest as possible would be burned.

"Captain, what's the situation? My brother is in there somewhere!" Peter told him, stress obvious in his voice.

"Yes my men told me that you told them. We're doing anything to find him and put out this fire. Is there anyone in the Manor should he make it back there?" the Captain answered him, he tried to sound and look calm.

"Yes, of course, there's Malthe and the staff," Peter replied matter-of-factly.

"Good, I don't suppose that there's anything I can tell you that will stop you from going in there is there?" the Captain asked him almost chuckling.

"No, not really, would you? If that was your brother or son in there?"

"No, but take a radio and a gas mask," the Captain told him and gave the two items to him.

Peter left running, his heart racing his mind trying its best not to think of the horrible possibilities.

What petrified him was that there was just so much forest and so little time, so he just decided to go straight for the fire, he should have picked up a gas mask, but that in his mind would only stop him from yelling Christian's name.

"CHRISTIAN!? CHRISTIAN!?" He kept yelling, screaming the boy's name at the top of his lungs, he had also started coughing, he walked fast, he ran and looked around, his head swiveling at fast, irregular intervals trying to not miss anything, to scan as much forest floor as possible.

Just as he had started panicking, despairing that he would not find his younger brother or that he would find him dead, burned alive or from smoke inhalation, he saw him lying on the floor, passed out, curled in a fetal position. He didn't bother searching for a pulse or breath. He just picked him, threw him over his shoulder and started running back.

"Captain, I've found him, has the ambulance arrived?" he asked over the radio.

"Yes, thank god, yes the ambulance is here," the captain said back.

Peter left him on the gurney and waited with his hands crossed over his chest for the ambulance personnel to check him and declare him alive or dead.

"He's alive. He has a pulse but very faint breath. We need to get him to the hospital now!" said one of them as they pushed the gurney inside the ambulance and performed C.P.R. and checked his vitals and other things Peter did not know or understand.

He got in with them and called Ryan on his mobile phone.

"Peter! Is he..." Peter interrupted him.

"I found him, he's alive. We're getting him to the hospital now. Go to the Manor, get Malthe and get Mr. Cox to drive you to the hospital," Peter said before terminating the call.

"Oh thank god!! am I going to get back? I don't have my bike and walking or running there will take at least an hour, if biking there takes me half an hour..." Ryan thought, but just then the car came from behind the small hill and then stopped next to him. Inside it driving was Mr. Cox and Malthe on the back seat.

Ryan stared at them in disbelief.

"How...?" he sort of asked as he entered the other back seat and Mr. Cox pressed his foot on the gas pedal.

Malthe shrugged and placed a hand on the side of his chest where his heart was.

"Mr. Malthe just came to me and told me, "They've found him, we must go to the hospital now. And I've learned never to doubt the connection between twins..." Mr. Cox said as they drove into town.

Ryan, Malthe and Mr. Cox walked in the hospital and asked the nurse on the information desk where Christian was, which room.

"Is he okay?" Ryan asked Peter when they arrived at the corridor where Christian's room was.

"Yes, he'll be okay. They don't even have to keep him over the night."

Sebastian, Timmy, Jason and Enora were already there, they smiled at Ryan and hugged him showing their support. Timmy only shook his hand and gave him a pat on the back.

Maria was by Peter's side, holding his hand, Enora held his hand in hers.

Ryan smiled at her, not knowing how else to best convey his gratitude for her and his friends being there for him and his brothers.

"Want to go see him? He's awake, doctor's just checking up on him," Peter said. Malthe walked in and gave his brother a hug.

"Well, young Christian here, will be just fine, I've prescribed some asthma meds, well the inhaler for him to use for two weeks, it will help clean up his lungs better and faster, and no sitting by the fireplace for him for that duration if possible," the doctor said, giving Peter a piece of paper.

"Can I go home please?" Christian said in almost a whisper, eyes looking red from the smoke and filled to the brim with tears from the fear and agony of the experience he had just had.

"Yes, you can but please have him rest for a day or two before he goes on any adventures or physical activities, more if he continues to cough after those twenty four to forty eight hours," the doctor said and left. Peter and the rest thanked him.

Christian stepped off the bed and wrapped himself around Sebastian, not letting go. Sebastian raised him in a hug.

Christian nested his head on the teen's neck and wrapped his hands tightly around him. Sebastian looked to Peter and Ryan for aid or instructions.

"He's been through a trauma, and he trusts you. Come on, let's get him to the car, but Ryan, Jason and Enora you'll have to come by bikes as I don't think it will fit us all," Peter said answering Sebastian's unspoken questions.

"It's not a problem Peter, I'll drive them in mine, see you in a bit love," she said to him. Ryan, Jason and Enora headed off with her to her and Jason's car.

When they arrived in the Manor, Sebastian was sitting on one of the couches in the living room, Christian still attached to him unrelenting in his grip. Sebastian was caressing his back and shoulders in slow, circular movements.

"Hey, is he asleep?" Ryan asked his friend.

"I don't think so mate, but he is purring like a kitten," Sebastian said, chuckling lightly. Ryan caressed Christian's cheek and smiled when the boy opened his eyes and smiled at him.

"How about you let go of my friend before you merge into him eh?" Ryan joked, but Christian shook his head negatively and hugged Sebastian tighter.

"I think Christian should go to bed now, get a nap for the afternoon," Peter said as he sat down in his armchair by the fireplace and started placing wood in it.

Sebastian got up and started walking towards the stairs. Malthe disappeared in the library, Maria and Enora were talking together and Ryan had started talking with Jason that sat next to him.

"Come on Chris I'll put you to bed little man," Sebastian whispered to him. Christian purred and wiggled in Sebastian's lap causing the older boy's soldier to stir in its clothed confines.

"Can you please stay with me until I fall asleep Sebi?" Christian asked him when Sebastian tucked him in his bed.

"Sebi?" Sebastian giggled. "Yeah sure I can stay for a while Christian," he said, caressing the boy's golden hair.

The little cherub turned on his side so he could put a hand over Sebastian's legs. Sebastian rubbed his back until the blond angel fell asleep and then just remained there for a little while longer to make sure that Christian won't wake up to emptiness.

Peter entered the Manor and went for his study.

"It's been almost a week, well four days. Do they know how and where the fire started?" Ryan asked him descending the stairs. It had taken almost two days for Christian to detach himself from Sebastian, which had meant two sleepovers.

"They found a clearing where they thought the fire originated from. They think it started there since there was enough space for the sun to have dried the undergrowth there more than the rest of the forest which made it easier for the accelerant to burn faster and make the fire spread, had whoever did this done it in the middle of the forest the fire may not have become as large since the sun does not reach the undergrowth as much due to the thick tree canopy and therefore they are less dried up," Peter explained clenching his fists.

"So they think it was arson?"

"No, they know so. Whoever did this used gasoline purchased from any gas store and a lighter."

"Whoever? Who else would be...vindictive or hostile enough to do anything like this?" Ryan asked angry.

"Both Jack and Terry have alibis, albeit they are each other's alibis but a couple of other pupils from Jack's dojo place saw them in the dojo training, and I think it unlikely anyone still in Jack's dojo after we opened ours will come forward to testify differently. They would be either too much of a cowards or of a same mind with Jack or both, so for now there are no concrete evidence linking him to this."

"Can't they use police dogs to sniff him out or something?"

"No, Ryan no one died and even if Owen could somehow justify it in the budget the fire would have probably destroyed any such evidence and I don't think that Jack would still keep the clothes he would have used unwashed after four days."

"It is so frustrating!! It is obvious as day that he or Terry did it! Why can't they just arrest them and find the evidence later?"

"It doesn't work like that Ryan, that's not justice. There are laws for a reason even in Jack's case."

"And if he actually did it and can be proven?" Ryan asked as more of a challenge towards Peter, to test his answer, more like a child would do to a father, to learn of borders or to assure itself of fatherly loyalty.

Peter's face went blank with rage for a second, before he regained his composure.

"He endangered our family fortune and most importantly one of my brothers, my family. The police will arrest him and he will be convicted, if he is not...I will... make sure he hurts no one else ever again. Now I have some work to do," he said and closed the study room door behind him.

A couple days and a few hours later, someone knocked on the door of Peter's study.

Christian's head popped in the door. "Peter? Adam's dad wants to talk to you about him having a sleepover tonight! Can he?" he asked him in his chirpy voice. Adam being a new friend he had made in the welcome party, same age as him and would be going at the same grade at school.

"Sure, is he on the landline or in your mobile?" Peter asked removing his eyes from what he was reading.

Christian walked to his desk and gave him the cordless landline phone, Adam's brunette head looked in the study room apprehensively probably knowing from his own home that father's study is off limits and associating the two rooms in the same context even though Peter was not Christian's or his father.

As the door opened for Christian to get in and give Peter the phone, Peter got a good look on Adam. He was a few centimeters taller than Christian at one hundred and thirty five centimeters tall, and Peter waged at about the same weight, his body was lean and his coltish legs that showed under his shorts betrayed that Adam did some form of sport, maybe football because even in his young age they had begun to form muscles and lose the baby fat that other children still seemed to possess. There were definitely nice curves to his legs and thighs. Peter couldn't see Adam's belly as it was hidden under the boy's clothes and he couldn't see anything under it but there seemed to be a healthy looking bulge between the boy's legs. Adam's wrists unlike Christian and most boys were not slimmer than his palm and hand but of the same roundness probably indicating a later strength in the boy's development, with sturdy hands that would be able to hold and lift weight.

Adam's face was someplace between roundish and oval like with a pointy chin that suited the boy well. He had puffy cheeks and a thinner upper lip than the lower one, but both blood red. His nose was small and pressed sort of inwards rather than pointing outwards and his light blue eyes complimented his fair complexion and short "hat" like haircut of short-ish brunet hair. He fiddled with his fingers nervously while Peter talked to his dad.

Christian waited there changing his weight from one leg to another in anticipation while Peter talked with Adam's father.

"Very well, I shall have him over tomorrow before lunch time then, yes nice talking to you too Mr. Foster," Peter concluded his conversation with Adam's father and terminated the call giving the phone back to Christian who was already grinning from ear to ear.

"Adam can stay the night. I'll have Mr. Cox drive him home tomorrow noon, now off you go Chris!" he said to the little boy, or more like Duracell bunny as Christian was currently almost jumping up and down from his unchecked excitement at Adam having been allowed to spend the night. He took the phone and ran outside, taking Adam by the hand to whatever game or mischief he had intended for them. Peter chuckled, shaking his head, and returned to complete the email he had been writing before Christian came in the room.

Ryan and Jason had gone to the lake to swim. Enora had some errands for her father to complete and Sebastian had "mysteriously" disappeared with Timmy in his house.

Being alone and being so hot outside the two friends had decided to skinny deep shedding their speedo and swimming trunks respectively.

They were currently wrestling in the water, Ryan having managed to get behind Jason, his hands holding Jason round the waist and shoulder, his hardened spike poking between his friend's cushions.

Their breathing fast and rugged not only from the sexual tension but from the effort of staying afloat in the Lake's salt -less, murky water. Jason's developing boy prick was also as hard as a nail as he fought to turn round and dunk Ryan underwater.

"Where do you think you're going Jason?" Ryan asked him in a husky, lustful yet playful voice. Jason tried to turn but Ryan surprised him by grabbing his missile launcher and boy-sack in his hand and gave it a hard squeeze.

Jason made a sound between a squeal and a moan and froze in place, like a kitten grabbed by the back of his neck.

He knew that Ryan was in almost full control of him.

Ryan squeezed again and again as his pride and joy continued to traverse Jason's ample buttocks for a few inches before retreating back as the boy's swayed their legs to keep afloat.

Jason's eyes had closed. His breathing was coming in and out fast and uneven. "Fuck! That feels good!" Jason moaned.

Ryan giggled and holding his friend's family jewels in his hand tightly like a vice but not in a painful way he swam them to the coast and there half covered by the slight ebb and forth of the lake waves he sucked Jason until he came in his mouth. Jason reciprocated once he found his breath. They got dressed and started walking back to the Manor.

"I can never get over how good that whole thing feels!" Jason said.

"Yeah...wait until you are inside a girl's pussy, even with a condom it feels fucking unbelievably amazing!!" Ryan responded grinning from ear to ear.

They continued talking until they arrived in the Manor and up the stairs when they heard giggles coming from Christian's room, but not the typical young boy giggles, they were more nervous ones.

"I am not sure about this Christian!" Adam's voice squeaked through the slightly opened door.

The giggles, along with Adam's voice, peaked their curiosity and made them stop at the top of the stairs, look at each other and with a nod from Ryan they grinned and got closer to the door.

Both boys sat on the bed's edge, Adam's back to them, Christian either had not seen them or did not care. Both boys wore only their undies, their clothes scattered around the bed.

Christian giggled. "Come on silly. I've been doing this with my brother since we were like four or five," he said and stood up removing his undies.

They could see Adam's face tilt slightly lower and then upwards as he scanned his friend's body. He giggled and stood up timidly, hesitantly just as Christian sat back down grinning.

Adam looked at his friend's eyes and then grasping the waistband of his boxer briefs he lowered them to his ankles and then stepped out of them exposing his perky, teardrop bum to Ryan and Jason.

Christian giggled and before Adam could sit down his hand shot through the empty space between them and groped Adam's boy ball sack in his fist, gave it a gentle squeeze making Adam moan. He then moved his index finger and thumb and pulled back Adam's foreskin, exposing the pinkish glans inside like a flower opening to the sun's first rays.

Adam giggled and then moaned when Christian gave his boy spike, his now fully hardened boy spike, a few strokes before removing his hand and sitting his friend down tugging on his hand.

Christian then took Adam's hand in his and giggling for his naughtiness placed it on his genitals.

He continued to stroke Adam's now erect flesh flute until Adam, getting over his timidity, started to stroke him back.

Christian started to moan softly, his eyes semi closed. Soon after Adam was moaning quietly, softly.

Christian pushed Adam's chest towards the bed gently. Adam didn't resist and when his back touched the bed, Christian giggled and dove for his dickie and started lapping at it with his tongue like a lollipop.

Adam moaned and closed his eyes in complete bliss.

Ryan tugged at Jason's wrist and nodded away from Christian's room grinning, Jason nodded in the affirmative grinning back.

They tip-toed to Ryan's room and closed the door behind them.

"That was...HOT! I mean...he's your little brother and all but it was so unbelievably sexy!!" Jason commented.

"Yeah...I mean did you see Adam's butt! So cute! And round!" Ryan burst laughing and giggling, "It's made me so horny!!"

"You're always horny doofus!" Jason quipped smiling.

"And you're not fuckweed?" Ryan wrestled Jason on the floor laughing until he had a sort of epiphany.

"Wait...I...we've been best mates for almost two months now and I don't even know yours and Sebastian's birthdates! How does that happen?" Ryan exclaimed. Jason pinned under him. Ryan let him go and they sat on the floor.

"Yeah...that's weird...well Sebastian's at the fifth of October, mine's at the twentieth of February. When are yours and your brothers?"

"Well mine's at the twenty second of February..." Ryan started saying but Jason interrupted him excited.

"What?! No way?! Our birthdays are so close!! Ohh...sorry go on!" he said grinning showing his white even teeth.

"The twins' are at the nineteenth of September and Peter's at the sixteenth of May."

"Maria's at the tenth of April actually!" Jason said and groped Ryan's jean-covered bulge indicating what he wanted to do at the moment. Ryan chuckled and lay on the floor, raising his pelvis he removed his jeans and undies then removed his t-shirt.

Within seconds after Jason was also naked, they were sucking each other off to a blissful orgasm in each other's mouths.

They walked inside the bathroom and started soaping each other out, when at some point Ryan had his back on Jason so that the latter could soap up and rinse his back, and behind when Jason stuck a finger inside Ryan's love chute and by some beginner's luck rubbed against his boy-button causing him to moan loudly and spurt a second batch of boy butter all over the bathroom tiles.

Ryan giggled and turned round to face his friend. "We need to get you a girlfriend before you decide you love boypussy more than girl-pussy!" Ryan told him, bursting into laughter.

Jason almost doubled over from the laughter as well. "Boypussy? Where on Earth did you learn that?!" he asked when he recovered from laughing.

Ryan shrugged his shoulders, grinning mischievously, "dunno...the internet or something..." They dried off and cuddled in bed after they got dressed.

"Well let's see what I can do for you mate!?" Ryan said at some point and reached for his mobile phone with his determined look about him.

He called Enora and after they talked about whatever about their relationship he asked her if she had any girl friends that she knew were free and on the lookout for a potential boyfriend.

Jason couldn't properly hear what she said but she must have replied something positive because Ryan's face lit up and then arranged a double date for the next afternoon.

Ryan terminated the call looking rather pleased with himself. Jason giggled and hugged him close.

Sounds of sloppy interactions emanated from Timmy's room as he and Sebastian basking in all their naked teenage glory lay on his bed cuddling and Frenching after having just sucked each other off, saliva drooling from the corners of their lips as their tongues battled for dominion in both their mouths. Their hands roaming their curvy bodies like sail ships of old ploughing the seven oceans in search of new lands and riches to be had.

They moaned softly, melody in each other's ears. Timmy was on top, his body lying on Sebastian's. He pushed a leg between Sebastian's legs, opening them up and rubbed his knee gently on his boyfriend's genitals arousing him further. Sebastian responded by squeezing one of Timmy's pillowy, smooth yet firm buttocks in his hand rather strongly. They giggled and moaned.

Sebastian had fooled around with Ryan for almost two months now, but it was always at least on Ryan's part only a friendly exploratory and relief activity. Now with Timmy it felt somehow deeper, better, sexier, hotter, all of above and then some.

"Mmmm...your cum tastes so good Timmy, and yet sweet berry jam!" Sebastian said in between sloppy, wet kisses blushing.

Timmy giggled, " taste good salty butter with flower flavour..." he said blushing back.

"I...I really like you, you know..." Sebastian admitted to him for the first time.

Timmy grinned from ear to ear as he answered back, "Yeah me too...increasingly much!" he finished and attacked Sebastian's lips, or was it that Sebastian attacked his? It mattered not as they kissed and rolled on the bed and touched and felt good and warm inside.

"Malthe, how can this be possible, I just finished reading it but...there's so much I don't understand," Peter said to the little boy sitting opposite to him in the library.

The boy looked up from his book, "You are not required to understand it all, only to find a chemical company who will synthesise the required elements for you and create the fertiliser for you in bulk," Malthe answered him softly.

"Yes, but how will it work? Won't it change the ground, subterranean water supply and other plants as well?" Peter asked perplexed.

"No, it will not bind with either the ground, water or other plant or animal life. It will only bind with the genetic code of the grape vines and the grapes themselves. All that they need to do is for you to send one of each of the grape seeds and have them genetically analysed so that their unique genetic information is added to the fertiliser.

Like that the chemical molecules will only bind with them, they will travel to the grapes through the water and ground to their roots, but if not "captured" by them they...well...sort of programmed to "die off" in layman's terms after an hour, like that they won't travel much outside the agricultural lands and even if they do any and all other plant life doesn't have the required unique genetic code so the chemical molecules will not bind with them and thus will not alter them or modify them at all."

"Will "this" change the quality or flavour of the grapes?"

"It will allow them to grow where there is little or no sun, yes that will affect the flavour and maybe the quality, but not necessarily for the worst."

"I guess so...what about changes in the human DNA or health?"

"No effect. The grapes will not become larger or smaller, sweeter or sourer, all that will change is their ability to grow and flourish where there is no sun, or there is barely any for prolonged periods of time.

The boy said and returned his eyes to his book.

"I guess I'll have to search for a chemical production company and genetics company relatively nearby then!" Peter said excited with the whole prospect of actually doing what he had always wanted and start growing his own wine production.

Malthe didn't look up from his book as he spoke, "Last page, you obviously didn't notice the contact information."

Peter looked to the folder with the pages on the desk and switched to the last one. There he saw the names and contact information of several companies and the copyright service.

The next week or so was a blur of movement and activity in the Manor as Peter made the arrangements to patent the fertiliser and have the seeds analysed so that the fertiliser could be made. He phoned and arranged for Rick and George to become the Estate's lawyer and financial manager. He started hiring personnel and purchasing equipment and materials.

There was not even a harvest yet and Peter seemed to work all day long, but Ryan had never seen him as happy as this before.

"Ryan, wake up! We need to get going!" Peter yelled at him from outside his room's door.

Ryan mumbled and groaned, he looked at his alarm clock and it was only nine thirty.

"MMGGHRMM!!!! WHAT IS IT PETER?" he yelled back at Peter, annoyed at the early hour of his awakening during August.

"We need to go to the mall to get you three all your school stuff, hurry up already!" Peter told him back.

Ryan groaned and got off the bed. Thirty minutes later, he was downstairs eating breakfast with groggy eyes, his face propped on a hand. Malthe seemed equally tired, a stark contradiction to his twin counterpart who seemed alight with playful energy.

"What are you doing being so energetic this early on August?" Ryan asked him semi annoyed.

"Why not Ry? School's starting soon! I get to make more friends and see Adam more!!" Christian giggled back at him wolfing down crumpet after crumpet.

"When did summer and August pass so quickly? It seems...well it seems like only yesterday that we moved in here..." he trailed off, biting a piece off of a muffin.

Peter chuckled, "Well when you're having so much fun with your friends and girlfriend swimming, biking and being teenagers, time does fly by...besides you have a few more days of August yet, and many, many summers to come bro!"

Peter left them and called Maria. He arranged for her to bring Jason and Sebastian along so they can all have a fun day shopping in the mall together.

End of chapter 4. I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it and that you felt what I felt while writing it.

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