When we got to Asheville it was still early enough for us to take a break before we needed to be cleaning offices. We all decided before heading for Clarksville, we'd go by the Junior League shop and speak to Mrs. Walton since she had commented on our neglecting her. Before we got out of the van we could see a note on the door and the lights were off. "Closed for Christmas week, no doubt," Hank said. Jonathan hopped out and went to read the notice and it was as Hank suggested.
Since the store was closed, we decided we'd just go on. We got to Clarksville too early to clean the offices--or would have been had they been open. "I guess we should have asked about the offices this week," Jason said. "They may be closed all week. I'll call tomorrow."
Before we started home, Wesley said he needed to stop at an ATM. "Tell me," Hank said, "won't your parents find out you are getting money from an ATM? Couldn't they find out where you are? I mean can't they find out where the ATM is you're using? Won't they know your balance keeps going up and down? Couldn't you get Mary Capers in trouble?"
"Whoa, hold it," Wesley said. "There's no way they could find out anything. Well, maybe they could but they won't, because they'll not think about it," Wesley responded. "I mean maybe in a normal family they would, but the 'rents never paid that much attention to us kids. Our allowances, like all the family bills, are handled by a bill-paying/bookkeeping service. The service deposits our monthly allowances and from there on it's up to us. Of course, if we needed extra we had to ask. When the 'rents stopped my allowance, they just told the bookkeeping service to stop depositing it. Then when Mary Capers told Dad to give her my allowance and he agreed, a note to the service and that was taken care of. Now Mary Capers will just deposit a check in my account and no-one's the wiser. Hey, there's a bank and an ATM," he said when he spied Mountain Bank on the corner.
Wesley withdrew some money and immediately paid us back the money he had borrowed, and offered some to Hank for the use of the van, but Hank refused it. He did say if Wesley wanted to put some gas in the van's tank, that would make his dad happy. "Ok!" Wesley said, "find a station." When Hank pulled into a station, Wesley hopped out and filled the tank.
As we pulled into our drive, I said, "Everything except the computer equipment goes in your room. The computer stuff goes in the den with ours."
"How about the stereo and CDs?" Wesley asked. "I have a boom box which is fine for my room and you and Jason have nothing in yours. How about we put the Charlotte stereo in the den and you two guys take the small one from the den to your room."
"Sounds good to me if it's fine with you," I answered.
"Wouldn't have suggested it otherwise."
We had turned the heat back when we left home for Charlotte, so the house was chilly when we arrived but it soon felt good since we had immediately started unloading Wesley's things and carrying the boxes upstairs. It didn't take long for us not only to be warmed up, but also sweating.
We had rotated the job of carrying the boxes down in Charlotte, but the only job now was carrying boxes upstairs. We just stacked them in Wesley's room for him to open later.
Since we all were carrying boxes, we finished quickly which was good, because climbing stairs with a heavy box in your arms is hard work. When we finished, we were all exhausted and just sprawled out in our den. A few minutes later, Wesley got up, went to his room and came back with a large box. "I have never thrown away nice silk boxers or briefs, and I have at least a dozen pairs I bought for Dwight. Since he is bigger than I am, there's a range of sizes here, some for everybody." He opened the box and started looking at size labels and tossing a rainbow of silkies to us.
"You are going to really love your new underwear," Jonathan said. "It feels sooo good. Just thinking about my briefs and feeling them on my body makes me hard."
"Jonathan, you stay hard anyway," Hank laughed and added, for our benefit,"That little fucker is hot to trot all the time, I think."
"Maybe hot to trot all the time, but I'm not a little fucker," Jonathan asserted as he tossed a pillow at Hank. "Not yet a fucker and not little--and still growing," he added, then turned bright red.
We all had a good laugh and then Jason said, "It's almost 5:30. It's a little early, but it gets dark early these days. I think we might take care of the evening chores."
"Look, how about if we do that--Hank, you and Jonathan go take care of yours--then we'll all head to Ollie's place for dinner... on me," Wesley said.
"Why does that suggestion not surprise me?" Jason laughed. We had been to Ollie's shortly after Wesley came, and he immediately fell in love with the place.
"You treated us once already today," Hank said.
"Yeah well, look, think of it as a tip for doing a good moving job."
"Fine, it's your money. Come on, Jonathan, let's get moving. Back here by 6:15-6:30?"
"Sounds good," I said.
Everything had been done except the milking and while Jason and I did that, Wesley sat on an overturned pail nearby.
"You know it's kinda strange, maybe, but I miss Granddad," Jason said.
"I was just thinking the same thing," I replied.
When Jason and I did the evening chores, we almost always had help from Granddad or at least he went to the barn with us. At first I thought it was because he didn't trust anyone to do everything right, but gradually I came to realize it was a time for "man talk," about whatever was on any of our minds. Now, with Wesley helping with the chores and Granddad trying to come to grips with Wesley being gay, those times had become especially important.
"Tell you something even stranger, I think," Wesley said, "not only am I missing both grandparents, but I really didn't want to see them go. I mean I was glad we could give them the trip, but I didn't want them to go. It was like I was afraid they would decide not to come back or something. Even though Granddad says he's not sure about gays and all, he has shown me more affection than anyone in my family has, well except Mary Capers."
"I wouldn't have been surprised if Jason or I had said that, since we have had people go away and not come back--you know, die--but that's not something you have experienced."
"Maybe it's a kind of reverse of that. I have never felt as much a part of a family as I have in the short time I've been here, and it is so priceless I am afraid it will disappear. That's what I am afraid of when I think about being here and being gay."
"Yeah," Jason said, while I said nothing.
When we had finished the chores and had everything put away, we three washed up to get ready to go to Ollie's. Wesley had offered to go downstairs to shower in the grandparent's bathroom and I appreciated that, although Jason and I did very little making out in the shower.
When we had finished our shower and dried each other, we went to our room to get dressed. As soon as we were in the door, Jason pushed it closed with his foot, grabbed me in a bear hug then gave me a kiss which made me see stars. "You keep that up and we'll not make it to Ollie's," I said.
"Don't tempt me," he laughed and gave me a Jason butterfly kiss.
We had just tossed on our bed the underwear Wesley had given us and now that we were getting dressed, Jason picked a pair of black bikinis for each of us and tossed mine to me. After we had pulled then on, we ended up in an embrace, fondling each other. In a nanosecond we were both hard as could be. We were in the midst of a tongue duel when Wesley called from outside our door, "Jonathan and Hank are here."
Reluctantly, Jason and I broke our kiss and finished getting dressed. Just before he opened the door, Jason said, "I'll finish what you started later."
Ollie's Restaurant, which used to be called the Garden Patch for some strange reason, was a relative newcomer to the Clarksville scene, I had been told. Seems Ollie had grown up in the area--over near Looking Glass mountain--and joined the army as soon as he finished high school. After twenty-two years, he retired at forty and came back home with a tiny Asian wife. At six-six and two hundred seventy plus pounds, you'd think he could boss her around, but she was fond of saying, "I'm modern American woman," and that meant taking nothing off of anybody--and that included Ollie!
Ollie had been a mess sergeant--an army cook--and had piles of awards for running the best mess on this or that army post. When he got back, he spent most of the first year hunting and fishing and then decided he wanted something else to do. He bought out the Garden Patch, which was near bankruptcy because of poor food, poor service and its reputation as a hangout for toughs. Ollie got it for a song. He and Lee, at least that is how his wife was known, spent more elbow grease on it than money, and made a nice-looking place out of the pretty rundown cafe.
The menu was interesting. It featured home-style cooking four days a week. Mondays and Wednesdays were for hunting and fishing. Sunday evening was different. Lee supervised while Ollie prepared an Asian meal. Generally there was one dish you could get in just about any Chinese restaurant, but only one. The other dishes often included Thai, Vietnamese and other unfamiliar ones. The meals were excellent, so Sunday evening was the only time reservations were taken--and required.
Ollie had said, "There's three things I really like: cooking, eating and watching people enjoy my cooking." All three were in evidence anytime the place was open.
It was just after 7:00 when we arrived and, being the day after Christmas, business was slow. Also it was a weekday night so Ollie's closed at 8:00. Lee took our order and when it was ready, Ollie bought a groaning tray to our table. "Join us, Ollie?" Wesley asked.
"Let me get my tea," he answered. He came back shortly with a huge glass filled with iced tea. "What have you scalawags been up to? No good, no doubt."
"Actually, we've been very good little boys," Jason said. "We took the grandparents to the Charlotte airport this morning and sent them on their way to the Florida Keys."
"You're kidding me! No way you'd get Gerald McElrath out of Deep Cove for long."
"Wrong, O wise one," I said. "They are, even as we speak, in a vacation condo overlooking the ocean, and will be there until New Year's Eve."
"And just how did that come about?"
"Wesley managed to get the condo through a family he knew in Charlotte, and we all pitched in for the expenses as a Christmas gift."
"Wesley, these guys may know it, but that is a great vote of confidence in all y'all. Gerald has never trusted anyone with his animals before. Well, I'm glad for them. So when did y'all get back?"
"Round 4:30. We had stuff to unload then had to do the chores."
"You hauled stuff from Charlotte?"
"My things," Wesley said. "I'm definitely going to be here for a while, so we went to get my things as well as to get the grandparents on their way."
"Then I guess you have missed the big goings-on today. You know that bunch up in Sadies Cove, the Circle of God's Chosen or something like that?"
"Sure do. My family is up there and that's the reason I am here. My father just about beat me to death and left me to die. Beating the devil out of me, he said," Jonathan said quietly.
"Damn, then you do know about it," Ollie said. "Well, I guess there have been a lot of complaints and reports of possible child abuse for some time now, but nothing proven. There was a case that got thrown out of court the week before Christmas because the people charged and the supposedly abused child or children disappeared. Seemed the best thing to do was to withdraw the charges. Well, and that lame ass Judge Harrison Patterson said he'd have dismissed the charges anyway since he approves of strict discipline and a Christian upbringing. He said the people in Sadies Cove were just doing what any good Christian parents would do."
"I don't see anything Christian in beating kids," Jason said. "And you should have seen Jonathan when we found him in the snow. His back had been cut to ribbons by his old man. Then he put him out in the snow to die, the rotten son of a bitch."
I reached over and squeezed Jason's arm to get his attention so he'd stop. Jonathan was about ready to burst into tears.
Jason looked at me and got what I was trying to tell him. He reached over, pulled Jonathan to himself and gave him a noogie. "But, by damn, they suffered a great loss and we made a great gain," Jason said as he released Jonathan.
"I'll say you are right about that," Ollie said. "And I guess this time they were making sure no-one escapes, because the sheriff's department, social services and the State Bureau of Investigation conducted a raid early this morning. Don't know what the outcome will be, but I was told there were six children taken by Children's Protective Services and three people arrested. The adults were immediately bailed out. It's a big mess."
We chatted about that for a few minutes, but it was obviously upsetting Jonathan so the conversation stopped.
When we got back to our place, I put in an hour's practice. Now that I had extra lessons and an opportunity to play with the symphony, an hour was the minimum I planned to put in every day. When I finished, I went upstairs and found Jason and Wesley in the den, watching "Law and Order". All three of us were devoted fans and tried to miss as few episodes as possible, even though one night a week there were two episodes back to back. Of course, we had seen all of those before, but still watched.
When the show was over, Jason clicked off the TV and said, "So there was a raid on the Sadies Cove bunch today. I wonder if there will be enough evidence to convict anyone of anything. Jonathan's family and that cult leader should have been jailed for what they did to him."
"He's usually such a happy and funny kid that I forget what he has been through," Wesley said. "He's a strange mixture. At times I think of him as being my age or older than I am, and at other times he seems like a very young kid. He seem that way to you?"
"As a very young kid, yes," I answered, "but I don't think I have ever looked at him as older than he is. To me he's just a playful kid."
"Same here," Jason said, "but I guess that explains something that worried me."
"I thought you were flirting with him last Sunday when we were hanging greens. I mean really flirting--like trying to seduce him--and that worried me."
"Because I am older and more experienced? I can see where that would be a worry. I had been thinking of him as older before, but when we were together later, I realized just how young and naive he is and how out of line I was. I mean even though I wasn't doing any really serious flirting. Then today, when Hank made his comment when Jonathan put on the bikini, I realized that I was probably out of line again. Once I thought about that, I realized how easy it would be for me to mess him up, and now I suspect I'll be overprotective."
"Which I suspect is just about the amount of protection that is needed in his case-overprotection--because he is so naive and trusting," Jason said.
"Yeah, but you'll have to admit he carries a fine package, and I don't mean a U-haul box," Wesley grinned. "Or do you two not check out what other guys are packing?"
"We're perfectly normal males," I said, "so sure we do. We're also perfectly normal GAY males, so of course we do."
"But I do expect you to remember Jonathan is very young and very innocent. Overprotective is the word," Jason said.
"No sooner said than done," Wesley replied, then added, "Sleep late tomorrow? I guess you two--turned loose with nobody watching--won't get any sleep. I'll be happy to advise and coach." Wesley paused, looked at us, grinned and asked, "Want to do a threesome?"
I wasn't sure--I didn't think Wesley really meant what he said, but it didn't matter. At least so far as I was concerned. I certainly wasn't interested in sex other than as an expression of my love--and lust--for Jason, but I guess I wasn't sure about Jason. I gave him a sideways glance, wanting to see his reaction. I'll admit I was kinda anxious. I needn't have worried.
Ignoring Wesley's suggestion for a sex party, Jason said, "I guess we can each have a sleep-in day, but we can't all sleep-in the same day. Cows do not sleep-in. Everything else can wait, but cows need to be milked at the same time--holiday or not. Why don't you sleep-in first?"
"Don't mind if I do," Wesley said. "See you two in the morning--late morning."
"Goodnight," Jason and I responded together.
"Goodnight," Wesley replied as he walked toward his room as Jason and I headed for ours.
As Wesley walked away from us, Jason stood, watching him. When he had disappeared into his room, I caught Jason by surprise when I grabbed him an flipped him over my shoulder, as he had often done me. I carried him into our room and, stepping across the threshold, paused to give him an opportunity to close the door behind us. In our room, door closed, I expected to be utterly caught up in lust and very frantic sex, but I was surprised.
When I put Jason down on the bed, he reached up and pulled me down beside him. He looked into my eyes, smiled, and gave me the softest kiss. I don't know how he does it, but Jason has a way of kissing which leaves me almost wondering whether or not our lips have actually touched. The first few times he did it, I was surprised at how it turned me on, often more than the hard passionate kisses I also like to give and receive. Both still turned me on--big time.
Jason's kiss set the tone for our love-making. Given the fact that we had nothing to worry about so far as being "found out" was concerned, and Jason's delicate approach, it was a wonderful night. Tender kisses and soft words led to Jason kissing and tonguing his way down my chest, giving special attention to my hard nipples. As his tongue invaded my belly button, he looked up into my eyes and gave me a mischievous smile. Then he ran his hands down my sides, his light touch raising goose bumps as they moved down my body.
After both Jason and I had kissed the other's cock, Thanksgiving, we had a couple of very long talks about our love-making and the grandparents. We agreed we needed to draw the line somewhere for our benefit. We finally agreed on "keeping it outside"--no cock in the mouth or ass. We were not foolish enough to think the grandparents would look at that and say, "Ok, that's fine if that is as far as you two go." It was symbolic of our respect for the grandparents, and anytime one or the other of us seemed as if we might be ready to cross that line, the other called a halt. We were not, however, fools enough to think that the line in the sand would last forever, or even for very long.
Jason moved his hands back up my body and, as he did, he looked up and smiled. I reached down and drew my lover to myself, covering his sweet mouth with mine, my tongue invading his. Our kisses became more passionate. We grasped each other's cock and continued our passionate kissing as we stroked each other to a climax.
As my climax took control of my being, I saw stars, really. It was like I had fireworks going off in front of my face and inside my head. As I came down from the heights to which Jason had taken me, I said, "Lover, you don't need anyone instructing or coaching, You are in the triple-A league as you are."
Jason grinned, kissed me and said, "You certainly don't need any coaching either!"
I guess it's not surprising that, given the day we had spent, we were soon asleep, wrapped in each other's arms.
Sometime in the middle of the night, Jason woke up and whispered, "Doug McElrath, I love you!"
He whispered, but it was enough to wake me. I turned to face him, and said, "And I love you Jason Talltree," and immediately gave him a soft, tender kiss.
"Since we are awake, I guess we need to make good use of the time," Jason laughed and his actions fitted his words. It was an hour later, after we had made love again, that we wrapped our arms about each other and went back to sleep.
Given the night before, Jason and I were reluctant to get out of bed when the alarm sounded, so we were a bit later than usual getting the morning chores done. When we got back to the house, Wesley was still in bed and asleep--or at least he was still in his room. Jason and I spent a good, long, fun-filled time in the shower, got dressed and had breakfast ready before Wesley came downstairs.
"Good morning, Wesley," I said.
"Good morning indeed," Wesley replied. "Sleeping-in was sheer luxury and I do thank you guys for making it possible."
"Guess even old Wesley can overcome his obsessive-compulsive need to be a morning person sometimes," I laughed as he sat down at the table.