Castle Roland

A Special Place

by Sequoyah


Chapter 19

Posted: N/A

A Special Place--Part Nineteen--Matt

I felt so good about what had happened at the falls that when Luke left, I was high. I looked over the program for the recital/concert and decided it was probably close to what I wanted. I had some transposing to get done, but I didn't want to work on it. While it was easy enough for me, there wasn't a lot of creativity involved and I felt creative. I sat down at the keyboard and started working on a composition I had sketched out in a pretty complete form called "The Family." I had finished "Yonghon Tongmu" and, frankly, was very pleased with it. I had worried a bit about it revealing too much, but decided "what the hell". Those who knew Yonghon Tongmu knew everything anyway and those who didn't couldn't be sure of anything. Besides, I was about ready to stand on the rooftop and yell for all the world to hear, "I'm hopelessly in love with Luke Hans Yonghon Tongmu Larsen!". Of course, I wasn't quite that foolish, but every time I thought about that man I got goose bumps. I loved him more and more every day.

When I get on a roll composing, two things happen. First, I lose all track of time and, second, I never want to stop until the piece is finished. When I finally had the compositions completed--all I had to do was check the parts for the ensemble and chorus with Eugene and Paula--it was 3:30 in the morning. I undressed and tumbled into bed. I was asleep before my head touched the pillow.

I had the greatest dream of Luke and me floating in the basin of the falls. We would drift together and hold each other for a breath-taking kiss, then slowly drift apart while we worshiped the other's body floating on top of the water. We had just drifted near each other and were reaching out our arms when I was rudely awakened. "Nice equipment you have there, Sir Matthew," Mary Kathryn's voice announced, and then she laughed. I sprang upright, grabbed the sheet to cover myself as she died laughing.

"Mary Kathryn, what the hell are you doing here?" I asked, trying to cover my embarrassment.

"I am here for our morning run, Lover Boy, so if you'll get that thing under control, we'll be off."

"Well, how about you letting me go piss and get my sweats on?"

"Go ahead, you don't have anything to hide that I haven't seen already."

"Mary Kathryn, has anyone ever told you you can be a real pain in the ass?"

"Not anyone who counts," she replied.

I finally decided I would not be outdone so I threw the sheet back, hopped out of bed and did a leisurely stroll to the bathroom, my morning woodie at full mast. "Now you have something to compare Michael's to," I said.

"Think it would probably be close, maybe even a tie. But get yourself ready, we have to run."

"One of these days...."

"Yea. yea. yea. I've heard that for years."

"If you weren't a girl...."

"You'd probably jump my body."

I took care of my need to piss, brushed my teeth and strolled back to my room. As I passed Mary Kathryn I did a turn, my arms in the air, and said, "No way. All you see belongs to Luke Hans Yonghon Tongmu Larsen!"

"Well, I'll have to admit my brother has the second best hunk of male flesh I know! Now get your pants on."

We climbed down the trellis and jogged to Michael's place. When we arrived, Michael was waiting for us. "Where's Luke?" I asked.

"Gee, I don't know. When I looked in the guest room the bed had not been slept in so I thought he must have decided to sleep in your bed last night."

"No, I haven't seen him since we parted after the falls. I wonder...." About that time I caught a glimpse of Luke racing from the studio to the house.

"Someone else with a morning woodie needing the bathroom," Mary Kathryn said.

"What do you mean 'someone else'?" Michael asked, as he gave Mary Kathryn a hard look.

"Let me tell you what this wild woman you have taken on did this morning," I said.

"Matt, you wouldn't dare!" Mary Kathryn exclaimed.

"Ha! Now I have you," I said and proceeded to tell Michael how Mary Kathryn had invaded my private space.

"Well, am I going to have to get a penis transplant or do you think you can make do with what I have?" Michael laughed.

"You two are terrible!"

"Hey, it's you going around comparison shopping," Michael said.

"Drop it, Killer, or you'll be on the same no-kiss diet as Luke."

"Michael, have you noticed that Miss Larsen can dish it out, but can't take it?"

"Can it, Matthew!" Mary Kathryn demanded. Michael and I were laughing our heads off.

Michael was not wasting time. His good morning kiss proved Mary Kathryn didn't have him on a no kissing diet. As he broke their kiss, he said, "Good morning, Dream Lady," to which Mary Kathryn replied, "Good morning, Shining Knight."

"Sorry I'm late guys. I got so carried away last night that I worked until 4 this morning and just collapsed on the sofa in the studio. I don't know when I would have waked up had I not needed to piss so bad." Luke then walked over, took me into his arms, looked into my eyes and said, "Good morning, Dark Angel."

I kissed him ever so lightly on his lips and said, "Good morning, Bright Angel".

"Damn, we're a mushy bunch," Luke said, "and man, I like it! Let's run".

When we got back to my place, Luke told Mary Kathryn to tell his Mom and Dad he would be home shortly. As Mary Kathryn jogged toward home, Luke and I walked up the front walk, arm in arm. He kept kissing the top of my head and my cheeks, making me want to forget about cut lips and really kiss him. When I turned my face toward him, he kissed me on the forehead and said, "Matt, that's going to have to do you. Babe, I want that lip healed and the sooner the better!".

We undressed in my room and stood drinking in the beauty of the other's naked body. Luke's body had just about recovered from his time in the hospital and, while he had not had time to workout to recover the hardness and definition he had before his attempted suicide, he was getting there. When we got to the bathroom, I looked in the mirror as we stood side by side. I, too, had lost hardness and definition because of the time I had spent beside Luke's bed, but I saw reflected two beautiful men. Maybe that sounds conceited and egotistical but, being as honest and objective as I could be, we were a beautiful couple.

"Sarang Hanun Pomul, I don't want to sound like a stuck on himself shithead, but we are a beautiful couple. Darkness and Light," Luke said, his lips brushing my hair. "But, God, you are beautiful, even with a cut lip and a black--actually its green and yellow now--eye, you're breath-takingly beautiful."

"So are you, Yonghon Tongmu. How did I ever deserve someone as loving and as beautiful as you?"

"I just got lucky and won the boyfriend lottery, that's how." We watched our reflections as Luke stood behind me and pressed his lips to my hair. He placed his hands on my chest and started rubbing my nipples until they became hard. His eyes never left mine as we both looked into the mirror. One of his hands was moving over my chest, brushing my nipples with the softest touch, when the other one reached lower and gently touched Chili Pepper. Luke then pushed back my foreskin and lightly touched the head of my manhood. He continued touching me until I grasped his hand and placed it around Chili Pepper. Holding his hand, I moved it up and down my hard, hot steel rod. As Luke started an even stroking rhythm, I reached back and pulled his body to mine. Soon I was gasping for breath and, before I could warn him, my climax hit me and once again I would have fallen to the floor had Luke not held me tightly in his arms. While I could not see clearly when my climax hit, my glance never strayed from the eyes of my beloved, reflected in the mirror.

When I had recovered, I stood behind Luke and made love to him as he had done to me. When his climax hit him, he exploded in great blasts of man's seed as he shouted between clinched teeth, "God, Angel!" and collapsed in my arms.

When he had recovered, he turned to face me. Our eyes met and I saw reflected in his, as I'm sure he saw in mine, deep love and great caring. In the afterglow of our love making, Luke gently nuzzled me under the chin and nipped my ear as I did his. We then got in the shower and had the great pleasure of washing the body of the one we loved. After we had dried each other, Luke found some of his clothes in my closet, got dressed and, too soon, we parted. "Remember lunch if you can turn loose", I reminded him as he kissed my forehead and left for home.

I had breakfast with Mom and Dad. I told them what had happened at the falls--all of it. Dad said, "Matt, I once had a friend who got carried away and did the same kind of thing to the woman he loved. Unlike Larry, he wasn't trying to make her hate him. He just got so aroused that he was only thinking of himself. Fortunately, she forgave him as Eugene has Larry, but they too, had a difficult time getting to where he could make love to her sexually. I know that you and Luke sometimes have a difficult time waiting and I can understand that. While I appreciate your willingness to respect your commitment to wait, I don't want you to ever reach the point where you hurt each other because you can't stop."

"Dad, that almost happened. I begged Luke to just take me and go all the way. He said that I knew that he could not refuse me anything and if that was what I really wanted, he would. Dad, it was so hard, so very hard not to just go ahead, but Luke made me stop and think. We both love each other so much it hurts at times, I mean it really hurts, but as Luke reminded me, we also love you and Mom--the whole family. We can't just think of ourselves."

"Matt, I want you and Luke to know that we all feel honored by the sacrifice you two are making. We really are--even Jens. I know of no parents who could be more honored than we are and we know and appreciate the respect you and Luke are showing for us."

"Dad, I don't doubt for a moment that we will never regret what we have chosen to do, but I also know that I will probably never face anything more difficult. I want--and I know Luke does too--the family to be proud of us. That is very important, so important that only our love is more important."

"Matt, we have always been proud of you, all four of you and the past few weeks have filled us with overflowing pride and thanksgiving for you all." With those words, both Mom and Dad got up, came to my place and gave me a hug and kiss. I must confess, I had tears in my eyes.

As we finished breakfast, when Mom asked about lunch I said, "I know Eugene and Paula will be here. Luke will if he isn't too involved."

"Where do you plan to work?" Mom asked.

"Since we will need to spread out the scores, I thought we would work at the dining room table. I'll bring my keyboard down and we can all see and hear the music."

"Why don't you see if Larry can come over, and ask Michael and Mary Kathryn to join you for lunch. I'll pack a picnic and you can all go to the falls. It is a beautiful and really warm day and after you reach a stopping place, that would be a time to enjoy yourselves."

"That sounds good to me. I'll stop by the Larsens and tell Luke and Mary Kathryn. Luke can tell Michael."

"I put a bowl of fruit on the table for you three to snack on while you work," Mom said.

"Thanks, Mom. Sorry you're having to do my Saturday chores, Dad. I appreciate it."

"Just get some good work done; that's all the appreciation I need," Dad replied.

I finished breakfast and went to the Larsens and told Luke and Mary Kathryn Mom was fixing a picnic for us to take to the falls, and I was going to see if Larry would join us. I then went to pick up Paula. When she got in the Jeep, I told her about our going to the falls with Larry and Eugene. Of course I didn't tell her everything, just that we had all ended up going.

"That Michael Andrews is something else," she said. "I have been thinking about what he has done for Independence and would like to check out something. I don't know how long it has gone on, but ever since I have been at Independence, the president of the student body has been a senior."

"I think it has always been that way. It's a kind of senior privilege, I guess."

"Well, they have also always been jocks--every year either a football or basketball jock. In fact, it seems that the whole thing is a popularity contest between football players and basketball players. And each year the candidates make impossible promises which they--and everyone--know are impossible to keep, and then do nothing. Michael has shown leadership, real leadership, and I think we should run him for student body president. What do you think?"

"I don't know. It would make some students really mad to have a rising junior even run. I know Michael would not get into the bullshit business and I don't know how students would react to a serious student body president. But you know, it would be nice to know that we left the school with the best student leadership it has ever had. Let's check that out with the others today--and with Michael."

Just before I got to Eugene's Paula said, "Oh, I was supposed to tell you if you picked me up first, Eugene is at Larry's." I swung around and went to Larry's. When I pulled up, Eugene came running to the Jeep, followed by Larry. "Larry, Mom is fixing a picnic for us to take to the falls and we'd like for you to join us. Can you make it?"

"I'm not sure. Mom's not here and I'm not sure when she will get back with the car or whether I could use it if she gets back."

"Give us a call sometime after noon if you can't come and we'll come get you."

"Great. I'd like that, provided I get my chores done. I promised Eugene's dad I'd mow their lawn so Eugene could work this morning. I have to mow ours and Mom wants the gutters cleaned. I'll see and give you a call."

"Fantastical. Gotta jet!"

As I started the Jeep, Larry leaned in and kissed Eugene a good one. As he broke the kiss, he looked at Paula and said, "Paula, you are a true friend indeed. Eugene and I can never thank you enough. You may never know how much you mean to us and our love for each other." He then leaned in and kissed Paula on the cheek. "Thanks, True Friend."

As we drove away, Eugene said, "Paula, he meant every word he said and that goes for me. You may never know how very, very much your speaking to Michael means to us."

"Friends care about friends, it's as simple as that. No thanks necessary."

When we got home, I got the music and the program I had planned and spread it on the table except for my compositions. Then Eugene and I brought down the keyboard and set it up.

"Let's look at the program first and see what you think of it," I suggested. After the two had looked it over, Paula said, "Well, there are some changes I'd make, but what about the two holes here? Do you have these two compositions?"

"Yea, but I want to hold off on them. Do you think their placement on the program is ok?"

"I see nothing wrong with that, but there are some other things I'd shift around," Eugene said.

"Same here," Paula agreed. "I'd cluster the hymns into a group."

"Same with the liturgical selections," Eugene said.

We took maybe fifteen minutes to rearrange the pieces on the program and we all three agreed the new arrangement was much better. We then got really involved in the arrangements and orchestration of the pieces. Man, Paula and Eugene knew their stuff. They were really on top of the choral and ensemble arrangements and orchestrations. "Let's take a break and then we'll get to the really hard part--the two original compositions," I suggested.

"Do you realize we have eaten a whole bowl of fruit and spent over two hours here without a break?" Eugene asked.

"I realize it now! Which way?" Paula asked. I pointed her to the downstairs bathroom and Eugene and I went upstairs.

I guess it was because Michael, Luke and I had never been shy about pissing in front of each other that I said to Eugene, "Come on in. I know there's room for three." He hesitated, then I guess my stream got the better of him and he was in a sudden rush to get to the pot. I hadn't noticed at first, but then saw he was checking out my equipment. When I looked at him, he blushed and looked away. "No need to be embarrassed," I said, "I think all guys, gay or straight, check each other out."

"I was just checking and when I saw you were uncut I had to get a better look. I've never seen an uncut cock up close."

"Well, you have now. Greywolf is to be thanked for that. He wouldn't permit me to be circumcised." We finished our business and went downstairs where Paula was waiting. "Well, I guess the time has come. I have two pieces. I have written the choral parts and done the orchestration, but I really want you two to give them the critical eye. I am a composer and organist so I am sure there are some really rough spots. The first is called "The Family" and here's the program notes I have written for it if you want to see them first."

"Let's look at the music first," Paula said. "If the music is good, the notes may add to it; if the music is bad, Matt my boy, notes aren't going to rescue it." I had scanned the music and made three copies so, as they each looked over a copy, I looked at it again. I thought it was pretty good, but then I knew the music and the story behind it, so I wasn't too objective. From time to time, Paula or Eugene asked me to play a section, then they'd go back to looking at the music, sometimes humming, other times tapping out a rhythm on the table. They both finished about the same time, laid the music on the table and looked at each other.

"Well, does it suck or does it suck?" I asked. I could tell nothing from their expressions. Just as Paula started to open her mouth, I heard the lawn mower start. We had almost an acre of lawn and keeping it in shape was one of my chores, and now Dad was doing it. I felt pretty guilty. I really wanted to say that to someone so I said, "Man, I feel guilty sitting here. My Dad and Mom have been doing my chores so I could concentrate on my AP exams and this concert. I should be out there mowing the lawn."

"Matt, they wouldn't do it unless they chose to do it," Paula said. "They have decided what is important."

"But I know how you feel, Matt. I felt the same way when Larry took on my Saturday chores so I could be here."

"Well, if they are willing to give us the time to work, then I guess we better get to work. What do you think?"

"Matt, this is the work of a sheer genius. I wouldn't touch a note of it," Eugene said.

"Nor I," Paula agreed.

"But what about the orchestration? The choral parts. You had changes--great changes--to the pieces which were already written."

"That's part of it," Eugene said, "they had already been written and we had heard them. We had an idea of what they had sounded like in other situations. Your work may have been great on those, but it was not what we had expected. Here it is all new and I just hear it in my head and it sounds right."

"And let's face it. When you were working on the other stuff, you said to yourself, 'Eugene and Paula will help me out here,' so you didn't worry if something needed work. Now can we see the program notes?" Paula asked.

When he had finished reading the program notes, Eugene said, "Wow and double wow. Man, this is great.

"I agree," Paula said. "Your second composition better be really good since it follows 'The Family'."

"Well, I don't know. I'm not very objective about either. By the way, do you think it would be remotely possible to keep the two pieces under wraps until the performance? I really want to, but there are so many people involved...."

"Well, we could try. I guess if we asked the two groups not to discuss or play any of the pieces for other people, they probably would do that," Paula said.

"Yea, and we don't need to unveil the program notes unless it gets to the point where they would help. And we would practise in sections anyway until it is put together. So I guess it could be pretty much a secret. We can try anyway," Eugene added.

"I'd really appreciate that. Well, I guess it's time to look at the other one. It's called 'Yonghon Tongmu'."

"That's...." Eugene started, then stopped, looked at me, then finished, "Korean, right?"

"Yea. At least I hope so!"

"It means...?" Paula started to ask when Mom called from the kitchen, "Matt, there's a long distance call for you."

"Coming," I called back, escaping for a moment the question I didn't want to face. When I finished on the phone, I came back and said, "I wish people wouldn't do that: pretend something is serious and all they want is to sell you something or get you to do something. I hate that." I knew Paula was going to ask her question again and I still didn't know what I would say. Just before I sat down, the front door burst open and Luke came running in, grabbed me as if I was a rag doll, swung me around and when he stood me on the floor, kissed me on the forehead and said, "Sarang Hanun Pomul, your Yonghon Tongmu is on top of the world! Not only is he in love with the most beautiful man in the world, but he is a kick ass artist!" Luke kissed my forehead again then looked around and said, "Hi Eugene, Paula," as if he hadn't just blown his cover.

"Well, I should have known who Yonghon Tongmu was even if I didn't know what it meant," Paula said.

"It means Soul Companion--Soul Mate--and it's the name Matt, my Sarang Hanun Pomul, gave me. He was named Sarang Hanun Pomul--Beloved Treasure--by his father and he is." Luke again picked me up, swung me around, and this time gave me a butterfly kiss on the lips.

"Luke," Paula asked, "when is your birthday?"

"May 31. Why?"

"Yours Matt?"

"May 31, but I'm the oldest. I was born twenty minutes before Luke."

Paula was laughing so hard she couldn't talk. She just sat there laughing and pointing at me and Luke. When she finally got some control she said, "There is an age problem between you and your love, Luke? Like he's twenty minutes older? And Matt, there is a race problem with yours because you're Asian and Indian--mixed blood! And you discovered this at a special swim meet, like when? Matt, you are the biggest liar in the world while telling the truth." Paula was still laughing.

"Well, you can add another to the long list of those who are in on the secret life of Luke and Matt," I said. I was relieved, but was still a little upset that Luke had just announced our relationship without asking.

Luke turned me to face him, put his arms around me and gently, ever so gently, touched my lips with his. "Oh, Babe, I'm sorry. I was so excited that I got a part of my project done while thinking about you and how much I loved you. I just couldn't hold it back. I'm sorry, Babe. I'm really sorry. Forgive me?"

"Matt, you have nothing to worry about because of me. I have suspected for awhile, but your secret is safe with me," Paula said.

"Luke, Yonghon Tongmu, I forgive you. Paula, Eugene knew and I had no reason to doubt how you would take it since you asked Michael to speak to Eugene and Larry. I guess I'm still a little on edge from all that has happened in the last week or so. Plus I am getting real cranky because my damn busted lip is still not completely healed!"

"And I can't imagine why," Paula said. "Or maybe I can. I seem to remember, what was it called? Kissing?"

"How do things stand between you and Sheldon?" I asked.

"I think that's not quite the way you should phrase the question, Matt," Luke laughed.

"Luke, you're a dirty old man," Paula laughed, then immediately grew serious. "Guys, I still love him, I think more than when he left. Since Mom is so pushed for money, I don't call him but once a week and then only for a short call. When I can sneak it in, I e-mail him from school, but you know how difficult doing that is. I generally just write him a long letter every night. That's cheap. His family is not having it easy either. After they moved and his dad took the new job, his mom couldn't find a job and then got sick. So he's pinching pennies--saving for college. He works in the mall there and you know that pays little. He thought he just might get to come to the prom, but his boss told him if he didn't close that Saturday, he needn't come back so he can't leave until 9:00. His parents have only one car so he can't drive. The only way he can get here is by bus. He could leave there at 9:30 and get here at 1:00, but the prom would be over. So Luke, I am going to try to be a good date, but you gotta know you're not my first choice."

"Well, I guess that makes us even since there can be little doubt you're not my first choice, but we'll have fun, Paula, promise."

The front door again opened and a very sweaty Larry came in. "Babe, do you have a kiss for your hard working, sweaty man?" he asked as he bent over and kissed Eugene.

"Where have you been?" Eugene asked.

"I have been mowing the whole damn county. I mowed our lawn, your lawn and the Greywolf's, along with cleaning our gutters, I might add."

"Damn, I think I'll keep you since you are so useful around the house," Eugene said.

"Need to be of use somewhere...." his voice trailed off as Eugene stood up and embraced him and gave him a hot kiss.

"You love me and that's enough for me," Eugene said and kissed him again.

"If I can break up this little kissy kissy, why were you mowing our lawn?"

"I know what you guys are doing is real important and I didn't have anything I really needed to do after my chores were done so I decided to help out in any way I could. So how did the work go?"

"Amazing. We got more done than I thought we'd get done in a week. In fact, unless Matt really screwed up, we could be ready to start serious practice Monday in half to three quarters of an hour," Eugene said.

"And yours Luke?"

"Same story. I have a project which requires getting part done here and part in Lexington, and I just had to get the part here done before Wednesday. I began to think I couldn't make it, but I got so much done today, it will be ready by Wednesday. Matt, think I can have the Jeep to drive to Lexington Wednesday if Mr. Stephenson can make the arrangements? I also have to see if I can find some equipment I need which I can afford."

"Sure. It will only take one day?"

"I'll have to go back, maybe several times. I'll know more after I skip school and go Wednesday, and probably go back Saturday."

"Aren't you forgetting a wedding rehearsal Saturday?"

"Damn, I sure am. Well, I'll just have to see what I can do. If I leave early Saturday morning, I can be there when the shop opens and get back by noon--maybe. Right now I have to get ready for the first trip and that's looking good."

"Luke, why don't you show Larry the shower and see if we have anything big enough for him--no, that's definitely not going to work. Call Michael and tell him we'll be ready to go to the falls in half an hour or so, but Larry needs clothes now so Eugene can keep his mind on music."

When Luke and Larry left, the three of us buried ourselves in the music for "Yonghon Tongmu". Both Paula and Eugene kept telling me it was as great as "The Family", but both offered several suggestions for improvement and all were excellent. Thirty minutes later, "Yonghon Tongmu" was a much better composition that it had been before. "I wonder why this piece needed all that work when 'The Family' didn't?" I asked.

"From my point of view, it has to do with the fact that you used tons of sources for 'The Family', but you were restricted to one, actually very simple, theme for 'Yonghon Tongmu'; you had more raw material to start with for 'The Family'."

"And now that I know what it is all about, I suspect your emotions were a bit more involved in 'Yonghon Tongmu'--maybe not a whole lot more because I know how you feel about this extended family--but this is the love of your life you're writing about. And I am willing to bet that at times you held back because the event--real or imaginary--you envisioned when you were writing was so personal and private," Paula added. "I noticed that when we were working on the straight choral arrangement of the simple love/dance song. It was romantic, but so restrained it felt cramped, but with a few simple changes, it sounds like--when I hear the chorus in my head--a song for lovers to dance the night away, drifting, floating in each other's arms."

"You know, you're both right. Paula, one night Michael and Mary Kathryn, Luke and I danced to that tune and how you describe it is how I thought I saw it in my musical mind's eye. But you're right, I was trying to keep those moments to myself. I guess when you have something beautiful, it becomes more beautiful when you let others enjoy its beauty."

"Let's all three remember that and get that idea across when we start working with the whole ensemble and chorus--what we have becomes more beautiful when we share it with the world," Paula said.

"And that these two pieces are secret until they're...."

"My God, Paula, do you realize we are conducting an ensemble and chorus for two--not one, but two--world premieres? Holy polyphonics! And we're just a little podunk high school. 'Independence High School students produce world premiere of two major compositions by Independence High School senior and composer, Matthew....'" Eugene stopped to read the top of the sheet music to get my name. "'Sarang Hanun Pomul Greywolf'. I can see the headlines now."

I was laughing with Eugene and Paula. "Our on-the-spot live reporter will have interviews with choral director, Paula Wright, and ensemble conductor, Eugene Joyce, of the world premiere. Film at eleven." We were all laughing so hard tears were flowing.

Again the front door opened and Michael came in with Mary Kathryn. He was carrying some clothes and said, as he walked past the dining room table, "I thought there was some serious work to be done here today."

Eugene and I put away the keyboard, while Paula scanned the sheets where changes had been made. "Matt, I think the changes are clear enough that you can just get copies made without making fresh master copies. If you want to do that later, you can when you have time, but these are certainly good enough for us to start work Monday. What about rehearsals at St. Mary's?"

"When do you think we need to start, and how often? I asked.

"We need to start as soon as possible. I think maybe next week. How about Wednesday after school if we can get the buses. Then Mondays and Wednesdays unless we see we need more practice. That's in addition to the practice at school which will have to be separate for the chorus and ensemble, and without the organ."

"Sounds good. I'll have all the copies you and Eugene need for the whole thing Monday. And try to keep the cover on." We had just finished those details when Larry, Luke, Michael and Mary Kathryn came from the kitchen loaded for the picnic. As we left the house, I grabbed the blankets from the Jeep and we started walking to the falls.

A Special Place--Part Nineteen--Luke

As soon as we had crawled through the fence, Michael and Mary Kathryn, Matt and I joined hands and started singing "More." Paula joined hands with Michael, then Eugene and Larry joined the group. Soon Paula and Eugene were singing along with the Gang of Four. "I guess I'm just the odd man out," Larry said.

"Actually, I think I am the odd ball in this group," Paula said, only half joking.

"Ok, no odd men or odd balls. Paula is without Sheldon and we'll just have to keep it cool. I know how I'd feel if Michael wasn't here," Mary Kathryn said. "Larry, we learned 'More' one night when David--Michael's dad--and Margaret Bailey--his bride-to-be--came to the falls with the Gang of Four. You can do the same. Paula, sing a line and we'll follow." Larry was no dummy and soon all seven of us were singing at the top of our lungs. When we entered the path to the falls, Matt crossed the canes--I wasn't sure why, but then we really didn't want to be disturbed.

When Paula saw the falls, she came to a sudden stop and just stood looking, then turned slowly to face Matt. "Matt, I wondered where the falls theme in your compositions came from, now I know. This is such a beautiful place!"

"It is a very special place for us--for the whole family," Matt said. When we had spread the blankets and the food, we all started eating like pigs. We were all very hungry and Yong Jin was no slouch at preparing food--especially a picnic.

When we had finished eating and were just kinda flaked out, Paula said, "I'd really like to know more about why the falls are special--I mean other than their beauty. They really are beautiful."

Before we had finished talking, Paula had a good idea of why the falls were a special place for all of us. Not all the details, of course, but from Larry's and Eugene's recent healing time at the falls to my attempted suicide and the results of that foolish action to Margaret's and David's coming wedding.

"Enough of this serious stuff!" I said as I leaped up and started undressing. Michael and Matt followed suit. Larry, Eugene and Paula looked at us as if we had gone mad. They stared with their mouths open when Mary Kathryn jumped up and started undressing as well. When we were down to our boxers and briefs and Mary Kathryn had only bra and panties, we all four raced to the top of the falls and dived in.

When we swam to the shore, Larry and Eugene had stripped to their boxers. Paula was still just sitting there. "Hey, Paula, come on in. The water's almost fine!" Mary Kathryn called out. Paula finally laughed, stripped and dived into the basin from the shore.

It was still a bit early for the water to really be comfortable, but the day was hot and the sun was pouring down. Soon all seven of us were splashing and horseplaying in the basin. However, the water finally got the better of us, and one by one, we got out. Yong Jin had a good idea how our time at the falls would end because she had included a number of towels in one of the picnic baskets we had brought. After drying ourselves, we lay on the blankets, warming ourselves in the sun.

"Michael, I have been doing some thinking...." Paula started saying, when she was interrupted by Michael.

"You better watch that or you'll become known as a nerd--or is it nerdess?"

"Mary Kathryn, how do you keep this man in check?" Paula asked, and Matt and I started laughing.

"The truth of the matter is that the family had three sons in order to keep Mary Kathryn under control," Matt said. "You know what she did this morning?"

"Matt, I'm going to kill you," Mary Kathryn shouted. Michael and I joined in as Matt started laughing while trying to avoid being pounded by Mary Kathryn.

"This wild woman climbed into my room this morning and caught me with my sheet down," Matt finally got it out.

"Matt, you are in big trouble," Michael laughed. "But what have you been thinking about, Paula?"

Paula told Michael she wanted him to run for student body president. Michael raised several objections, all of which were disposed of quickly. Luke finally said, "Look, Michael, you have a chance to continue what you started with the service and you know none of the others who might run are interested in anything except something to put on their college application".

"You also know they all spend a pile of money on their campaign. I don't have that kind of money and I'm not sure I'd spend it if I did."

"Do you really think passing out suckers and Tootsie rolls really wins votes?" Larry asked. "I think we might run a real campaign with the talent we have here. I suspect we also have a pretty hard core ready to help as a result of the service. Look, I'm kinda outside the excitement of the moment as are you and Mary Kathryn. The other three are going to be so wrapped up in the concert and exhibition we need something wothwhile to do besides mow lawns! For example, if we could get Matt to write a campaign song and the ensemble and chorus to perform it, I could record it and mix it. That's where my talent and expertise lie."

"I didn't know that," Paula said.

"Audio and video expert right here. The school has great equipment that is almost never used except when I use it. I could get permission to use excerpts from the telecast of the service and put together some great video spots; you know each candidate gets a minute for a spot during homeroom while the campaign is on."

"Ok, Larry, if you'll work with me, I'll do it, but you gotta know there are going to be some pissed-off jocks."

"So? Turn Mary Kathryn loose on them," Matt laughed.

After we had lain in the sun for awhile longer, Paula said, "I guess I better be getting home."

"We need to go too, as much as I hate to," Larry said. "This is such a special place."

"We're going to have a party at my place after the prom--at least we're coming back to my place. Larry, Eugene and I will have to leave shortly after we get here to get the Randolph clan home by their curfew," Matt said. "I hope you all can stay. Why don't you plan to spend the night? We can come back to the falls, then spend the rest of the night--if there is any left--and have breakfast Sunday morning before I have to go to St. Mary's."

"By the way, Matt," Mary Kathryn said, "I had a long talk with Mom and Dad, and they understand why I want to go to St. Mary's with Luke--and Michael. I can't sit still for anyone saying your and Luke's love is sinful. While it saddens Dad that Luke and I are leaving Immaculate Conception, he said he understood."

"Matt, Larry and I are going to discuss doing the same thing, but I suspect my dad won't be willing to let me go and I sure can't tell him why I want to, at least not yet. I don't know when I will feel like coming out to my family because I know the least that will happen is I will be disowned. I'm not really ready for that yet," Eugene said.

"I can understand that," I said. "I am on a no-kiss diet and Matt still has the remains of a black eye as as result of my coming out. I do want you to know that you should never come out when you are angry."

"Well, we'll just have to wait until we are ready, Babe," Larry said to Eugene, and gave him a kiss.

"I wish you two would stop that," Paula said. "I haven't been kissed by my love since forever and you're rubbing it in!"

"Yea. Stop that!" Matt echoed.

"Ok, jokers, backs turned," Mary Kathryn said. We turned our backs and stripped off our boxers and briefs. Even though we had been lying in the sun, they were still damp enough to be uncomfortable and the Gang of Four had learned long ago that walking home in damp underwear was not advisable. When we had all dressed, sans underwear, we left the falls and went back to Matt's house.

When we arrived, Matt collected our damp underwear and put it in the dryer. When Yong Jin saw him doing that she said, "I see the lure of the falls proved irresistible again," and laughed.

When the dryer finished its work, we all seven got dressed and piled in the Jeep, and I do mean piled. As we drove toward town, we were all singing "More" again.

We took Paula home first, then dropped off Larry and Eugene when we came back through town. When we reached Larry's house, Eugene said he would stay with Larry awhile. As they alighted from the Jeep, Larry said, "Luke, Eugene and I have talked and we would like to talk with Dr. Bailey."

"Matt and I need to take care of that ourselves this week. Do you want me to make an appointment for you two when we see her?"

"Sure. Please do," Larry responded.

When we got back home, Michael and Mary Kathryn walked to our house and I went to Matt's place with him. As we walked, arm in arm, to his house, I said, "We had some real play time today, Sarang Hanun Pomul, and I loved every minute of it." As soon as we were inside, I took my dark beauty into my arms and kissed his forehead.

Matt brushed my lips with his--they were healing, but he was still not ready for a real kiss--and said, "Luke, I got a phone call today which may put a bit of a crimp in your prom date." His eyes were laughing big time.

"Nothing can put a bigger crimp in my prom date since I can't date you," I replied. "But what was the phone call?"

"Ok, it's top secret, but Sheldon called me while we were working. He had called Paula's mom and was told she was here, but when he called here, he asked for me. Paula is going to have a prom night she'll never forget!" Matt told me about his talk with Sheldon and concluded with, "I don't know what Yong Jin and Mary Kathryn have cooked up, but Paula is going to be a knockout. Somehow or other, Mary Kathryn will have to keep her in her formal until I get back."

"Sure sounds like a winner to me, Babe."

"Guys, have you forgotten you have a date tonight?" Greywolf asked when he heard us.

"I sure did," Matt said. I looked at him, puzzled. "We are going to Millie's for a little celebration. You had forgotten as well. Think we better call Michael and Mary Kathryn?"

"Mom will probably remember, but a call wouldn't hurt," I said as I picked up the phone. Michael was still at Mary Kathryn's, but had been reminded. "Mary Kathryn, tell him to remember to show some ass," I laughed and hung up.

"A little celebration" turned out to be a great dinner party with just the family and Millie--fantastic food and a lot of great talk about everthing under the sun. Millie managed to embarass the Gang of Four with her constant bragging on us. Jens finally said, "Millie, you would think you were these kids' grandmother!"

"I am and you damn well better remember that!" Millie said, and there was not a smile on her face when she said it. "I'll never have any of my own so I claim these. Kids, these parents give you any trouble, you come running to Grandma Millie."

"Millie, if I have a problem with Greywolf or Yong Jin, I may come running to you, but I can't bring myself to call you Grandma Millie. You just don't fit the image," Matt laughed.

When coffee and dessert were served, we were all in the living room just enjoying being together when Millie suddenly said, "Oh. I almost forgot. Ms. Jones called me last night to see if I had any influence at Oberlin. I don't know why I hadn't pushed you in that direction to start with, Matt. But I've been in touch with some old friends connected to Oberlin. I'd like for you two guys and Eugene to come for a light supper tomorrow night so we can discuss some things."

I looked at Matt and he sensed my question. "Millie, would you invite someone else?"

"Sure, who?"

"Larry Watley."

"Who's he?"

"He's Eugene's friend."

"His friend? A special friend?"

"They are best friends," Matt said.

Shortly after coffee and dessert, we all left for home. Tomorrow was a big day for Matt--it was Palm Sunday with all the extras that entailed.

Nonetheless, I spent Saturday night in Matt's arms, in his bed. We had decided that, in spite of what Dad had said, we just wouldn't feel comfortable sleeping together in my bed although we had done so for years, but things were different now. We were lovers.

When we went up, Matt closed his door--almost--and we undressed each other. It was strange. We had seen each other naked all of our lives, and even this afternoon we had undressed in front of each other without so much as getting aroused, but now, in the dim light of Matt's bedside lamp, we were both as hard as rocks when we got undressed. "Luke, I want to kiss you, really kiss you sooo bad," Matt said when I embraced him.

"I know, Dark Angel. I want to kiss you, really kiss you too, but I also want your lips healed. It'll only be a few more days."

"Wait, wait, wait. Damn, Yonghon Tongmu, I am tired and fed up with waiting!"

"I know, Sarang Hanun Pomul, so am I, but if I kissed you now, really kissed you...."

"Yea, I know too. Hold me and love me, Luke."

I picked Matt up and cradled him in my arms, kissing that black hair which drove me wild with passion and love for my man. I placed him gently on his bed and covered his body with mine. As I pressed my body to his, the hardness of our manhood met. I began to grind my hardness into his as he pressed against my grinding hips. As we continued grinding into each other, I kissed his beautiful face, his eyes and his neck. Matt wrapped his arms around me and pulled my chest against his. Our hard nipples rubbed together and our grinding became more and more intense. I kissed his neck then started sucking a spot just below his ear as we both began to move our hips faster, rubbing Chili Pepper and Little Luke between us. Matt was brushing my neck with his lips, then started nipping a spot below my ear. As our grinding continued, I realized I was near the point of no return. Suddenly Matt cried out softly, "God knows, Luke, Babe, I love you!" and with those words, he bit into my neck, and shuddered as a powerful climax hit him. As I felt his hot seed on my body, I blacked out for a moment as my climax took total control of me. I collapsed on his body and he held me close as we both relaxed in the warmth of our love making.

I finally rolled off of Matt and we lay side-by-side, gazing into each other's eyes. "Matt, how can I love you more every day I am alive? I keep thinking, 'My love for Sarang Hanun Pomul is total; there can be no greater love than this,' only to discover the next day, the next moment, that I love you more than the moment before. Promise me you will always accept my love, imperfect as it may be, and I will promise you that it will be more perfect tomorrow."

"Luke, I promise. And I have told you nothing will ever stop my loving you. Nothing." Matt again brushed my lips with his. We continued looking into the other's eyes, saying nothing, letting our eyes speak of our love. When Matt reached for the tissues on the bedside table, I stopped him, got up and swept him into my arms and carried him to the shower. As the warm water poured over our bodies, we held each other close, then lovingly bathed each other. Our shower finished, we carefully dried each other and this time, Matt picked me up and carried me to his bed, the place I wanted to be every night until I die. Safe in each other's arms, we gazed into each other's eyes.



"I want to say something while you listen, then we'll talk."

"Ok, Matt."

"Today when you came in and grabbed me and kissed me in front of Paula, I got upset. I have been thinking about that ever since. You were excited and full of joy and you just had to share your joy with me and I got upset. Luke, I got upset because you just couldn't not share your joy with me because you loved me. And I got upset. When you get right down to it, I got upset because you loved me, you know that? I hated myself because, without thinking, I had rejected you. And the other day when Michael saw us holding hands at school, we did that because we love each other so much. Things like that are going to happen. There are going to be times when we forget or just can't hide our love. I don't ever want to get upset because you love me. Luke, let's just know it's going to happen and that sometimes it really won't matter. Paula already knew more or less and it didn't change how she felt about us. Michael knew, so he didn't care, but others will. When something happens, because we love each other, we'll just deal with it and never, ever, blame the other. I'm sorry for what I did today and I don't want to have to be sorry again."

"Matt, I didn't give it another thought because I knew I should have thought before I acted, but you're right. Things like that are bound to happen. And when they do, we'll deal with the consequences. And we won't blame the other. Dark Angel, I know we'll forget because the only thing we will be thinking about is our love and, God knows, I love you!"

"Bright Angel, I love you with my whole heart." We snuggled closer, gazed into the eyes of the one we loved more than anything in the world and drifted off to sleep--happy, content, in love.

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