Darkness and oppressive heat. Steam hissing up from vents in the floor. Metal and machinery clanking and rumbling unseen. The air heavy with oil and sweat; thick with the stink of hard labour.
Walking forwards, dodging chains and scaffolding, figures coming into view through the gloom. Groups of men standing around in the blistering near-darkness. Shirtless in the heat; sweat trickling onto their jeans and boots. Their faces unwelcoming, eyes hostile.
Walking past them, deeper into the gloom; through the shadow of a doorway. Three or four men working a machine. Bare chests and backs dripping and dirty. Pale and muscular. One of them looking over at me; guarded and wary.
Another doorway, more men standing around, peering at something inside. Tantalising sounds of flesh against flesh from within. Some of the men looking over at me; their faces unfriendly, eyes suspicious.
Walking over to them, joining their audience. Glimpses of the inside of the dark, dilapidated room. A man's arse exposed, his jeans yanked down. Large, dirty hands pushing another guy's face into his hairy crack; pulling the furry cheeks further apart. Licking and feeding; gentle groaning.
The men around me watching what was happening, but also watching me. Their crotches bulging with their contained excitement; their expressions still seeping with distrust.
The activity in the gloomy, shabby room becoming more frenetic. Hands splaying buttocks apart and forcing them against the slobbering face. Other hands pushing the guy's head forwards, egging him on as he drooled and feasted on what was within.
Licking my lips at what I could see. Engrossed by what they were doing.
And then, unzipping myself.
The others looking at my face; then down at my fly. My cock emerging from it, engorged.
Sliding my foreskin back, the fattened head looking shiny and hard. Flaunting myself for them.
The men's wariness abating; their expressions yielding towards curiosity. Some of their faces betraying arousal at my excited manhood, rubbing their own inside their straining jeans.
One guy leering at me, revealing his own erection from his tattered jeans. Looking so large, flaunting its shiny fattened helmet. Grabbing its thick shaft and wanking it for me, making my own organ swell further.
Another man pulling down his dirty overalls at the back. Bending forwards and exposing his arse; a forest of wiry hair spilling from his cleft. And there, where the dense growth was wetter and more matted, his puckered hole.
Kneeling down behind him. His heavy balls dangling down between his thighs. His erection arching up towards his stomach.
Pressing my mouth towards his gaping buttocks. The smell of him, sleazy and delicious, thick in my nostrils.
Feeling so horny, so hungry to taste him.
His voice calling to me, "Come on... it's time..."
Sounding somehow familiar.
Somebody shaking me.
Light flooding in.
"Dad... come on! I'm gonna be late!"
My bedroom. Jake.
I struggled to speak, barely able to open my eyes. "Wh... what's the time?"
"After nine," he said with obvious irritation. "Come on, dad! I've got football practice!"
He tugged the edge of my duvet, probably just intending to encourage me to get me out of the bed, but I grabbed it with both hands to keep it covering the rousing effect that the dream had had on me.
"Oh no you don't, Jake!"
I really didn't want a repeat of what had happened a few years earlier - the memory of which, even now, was prone to make him smirk as quickly as it made my face blush.
It had been a Sunday morning during the summer and we'd arranged to drive over to the theme park at Lightwater Valley with a couple of his mates. In his enthusiasm to make an early start, he'd rushed into my bedroom to wake me up rather like he had this morning. On that occasion, though, perhaps feeling I wasn't moving fast enough and not yet knowing what perils can lurk beneath his old man's bedding, he had jokingly pulled my duvet off my bed. What he hadn't realised was that I was already awake and enjoying some quiet but very pleasurable me-time in my bed before he had so abruptly disturbed me.
And so, much to my continued embarrassment, Jake had unintentionally revealed the entire length of my very prominent erect penis - with an obvious red handprint on the thick shaft to add to my mortification - arching upward from my pyjama fly through which my large pair of balls was also protruding. Since I'd always been so self-conscious around him as to try and deprive him of a glance even of my flaccid organ, Jakes eyes had nearly popped out at the sight of his dad's full-on hard-on throbbing right next to his eager face.
He'd let out a gasp of "Whoa!" whether at the size of my organ, the shock of finding it so blatantly exposed or the sudden realisation that his dad had been enjoying a surreptitious wank; I don't know.
I'd quickly covered as much of my erection as I could with both hands. For some reason I was most concerned about letting my son see my swollen cock-head which was a dark shade of red and pumped up like an obscene-looking plum - a worry which was silly, really, because he had no doubt seen his own in a similar state of arousal countless times. However, covering my organ had just served to divert Jake's gaze - with another shocked gasp - down to my bloated hairy scrotum straining to contain the massive testicles which had given rise to him; testicles which had been just seconds from issuing forth another outpouring of my seed. I'd ineffectually fumbled to tuck the cumbersome length of my cock and my distended nut-sack back into my pyjamas while Jake's initial surprise had dissolved into a fit of giggles.
After he'd thrown the duvet back over me, he'd said through laughter that showed he shared none of my acute discomfort, "I'm sure Lightwater Valley can wait until you've finished what you were doing, dad!" Then he'd sidled out of my room still chuckling, leaving me feeling that my moment of me-time had probably passed.
There had been no further duvet-snatching during the intervening period and thankfully, on finding me now in a similar predicament, he quickly dropped the edge of my bedding and made no attempt to resurrect the joke. I think he rather liked the fact that his dad was as human as he was when it came to matters of sex, but he appreciated that I had hang-ups about my body and he was, on the whole, very respectful of my need for privacy in spite of us living in such close proximity with one another.
"Football practice starts at ten, dad," he reminded me with a knowing grin, and then, disappearing from my bedroom, called back, "I'll get you a coffee. But hurry up! I don't wanna be late!"
While he was clomping down the stairs, I pushed the duvet from me and swung my feet out of the bed. I realised I must have left the heating on full during the night. My forehead, my pyjamas and the duvet were all wet with sweat.
Getting out of bed, I glanced down at the thick rod lifting the front of my pyjama bottoms from the dream I'd been having. I'd never had such a sexually tense dream before and both the clarity and detail of it had been startling in their intensity. I was especially shocked that such a powerfully erotic dream had been exclusively orientated around men who'd been lurking in such an abrasively masculine environment - a place I assumed to be my mind's homoerotic representation of Guy's oil rig. If only the spate of heterosexual dreams I'd had in my pre-masturbatory pubescent past had had that kind of detail and realism - I'd have been a very happy youth indeed!
Ordinarily, my dreams very rarely drift towards the sexual and those which do are confused mosaics of hazy impressions and indistinct sensations. I might feel like I was inside a woman - my penis gently throbbing in her vagina - only to find that she seemed to be behind me, her nipples rubbing against my back and her hands reaching round to fondle me. Next thing I might have my face nuzzling into her breasts, then to become aware that I was kissing her mouth or licking her pussy or that she had been turned away from me the whole time. The back-story to the scenario and the identity of the woman I was with would both be unclear, or at best vague, and the dream's eroticism would exist merely as a pleasant ambience of fragmentary fantasies.
I enjoyed having such fleeting feminine imagery lapping over me like the gentle waves of a warm, tropical sea.
The dream I'd just had was altogether different. Aside from the obvious shift in its gender-focus, the atmosphere had been almost crackling with an aggressive lust, while the sexual imagery had been crude and explicit. And yet, as surprising as it was to have one's mind throw up such an intensely homosexual scenario - a scenario in which I'd been an active participant - the stiffness throbbing upwards from between my legs was a testament to how much I'd enjoyed it.
I staggered to the bathroom, hearing Jake downstairs busy himself with spooning instant coffee into my mug and opening a tin of food to placate the meowing cat, and locked the door behind me.
I unbuttoned my pyjama bottoms and released my cock from its confines, throbbing expectantly and hungry for attention. Angling its curving shaft with some difficulty into the wash-basin, I ran some cold water over it, thankful when my erection began to subside and the swollen head of it began to shrivel.
I looked at myself in the mirror above the sink while my cock reluctantly responded to the cold water from the tap.
What the hell was happening to me?
Over the previous day, I'd largely accepted that I'd enjoyed my first bona fide homosexual experience - the two of us men had been drunk and sexually tense, and so it was sort of understandable that we'd allowed things to go so far between us. While I couldn't have anticipated how aroused I would get by the smells and tastes of another man - his musky cock, his sweaty balls and that most tantalising area deep inside the moist crack between his buttocks - I felt more able to acknowledge this unforeseen interest as part of my broad sexual make-up.
I just couldn't believe that my natural curiosity to find out why I had been so excited by what Guy and I had done together had ended up with me whacking off in front of websites of men tonguing each other's backsides. Couldn't believe that those pictures, which really ought to have appalled any guy who professed to be straight, had instead brought me to the most powerful climax I could remember for many years. Couldn't believe that while I'd taken a bath, I'd thought of how the men in those pictures had looked together and had ended up jerking myself again, running the tap noisily so Jake couldn't hear my rhythm. Nor that, after I was sure Jake was asleep, I'd lain in bed and beat myself off a third time imagining Guy's hairy arse-crack being pushed down onto my eager, tongue-extended face.
As well as feeling troubled that I was getting so aroused by such lurid subject-matter, I was surprised that I'd felt compelled to masturbate three times in almost as many hours and had subsequently, if Jake hadn't awoken me, been well on the way to having a wet dream - both feats having been virtually unknown to me this side of turning twenty. Whatever had been triggered inside my brain by the events of Friday night had, at the same, given my penis a new lease of life.
I'd never been interested in women's backsides - not in the slightest. If I had to apply a label to myself - as one sometimes did to appease other men in the bawdiness of the group - I would state simply I was a 'breast man', even though the concealed treasures to be found lower down held a far greater erotic appeal for me. There was nothing I found more sensual than to lick around and inside a woman's vagina and to smell and taste her most delicate and feminine scents.
While showering, I wondered if my fascination with rimming was the homosexual counterpart of the same desire to taste of the secret and carnal; an expression of my salacious need to probe the bodily with my mouth and tongue. But whereas having one's face between a woman's legs was arousing because her juices and pheromones contrasted so subtly with one's own sexual smells, having one's face between a man's cheeks was - as I had found - a far more powerful and more electrifying experience. Indeed, the two were hardly comparable. The graceful sweep of a woman's smooth pudendum was heavy with eroticism and mystique, at complete odds with the lewd frankness of a man's hairy buttocks which seemed more like an expression of the vulgar. The secretive folds of her vagina seemed almost homely in contrast to the barren simplicity of his hole. The gentle aroma of her womanhood paled into the predictable alongside the intoxicating array of powerful sensations I'd experienced as I'd explored Guy's sumptuous male rear.
Such thoughts of Guy's backside as I showered - and of the more general attraction of other men's arses - led my penis to begin to recover its earlier glory and start its inexorable ascent upwards. I looked down at it, watching it thicken and harden as my foreskin slowly eased back to expose the fattening head and its single slit-eye was revealed to peer back up at me. In spite of its insistent demands for gratification as the water splashed down on it, I refrained from attending to it a fourth time so as not to stoke further waves of guilt about the rightness or wrongness of my burgeoning fascination with that most sordid of places.
In any case, Jake would be banging on the door at any moment, asking what I was doing in there and eager for us to get going.
My feelings of guilt gradually eased as I drove Jake to football practice and we chatted about mundane matters like where he might have left his best trainers and whether he wanted fish-fingers for tea.
We had to stop at some temporary traffic-lights while they did some emergency work on a water main and, as the engine idled, I distractedly watched one of the workers using a pneumatic drill to break up the tarmac. He looked like he was in his late twenties and had a roughness about him which suited his luminous safety jacket and yellow hard hat. My attention was caught, though, by the back of his dirty jeans which were tight enough to reveal his round and muscular backside as he bent forwards to handle the juddering drill.
An involuntary sensation of how it would feel to have my face burrowing between his cheeks flashed into my mind and I quickly looked away from him over to the busy chip shop on the other side of the road.
But then I looked back at him.
I wondered how his arse would look nude, flexing below the hem of his work jacket. He'd have a lovely pair of pert cheeks and a deep sweaty crack sprouting coarse black hair, the same colour as that on his head but curlier.
I looked away again - back to the lights, willing but at the same time not willing them to change colour.
I was developing yet another erection, right there in the front of the car with my son next to me. I was thankful that my swelling organ was directed down one leg of my jeans, giving it the space to expand inside my loose boxers without me having to awkwardly adjust myself.
I looked back at the worker. Oh god - that arse!
How exciting would it be to push my nose between those amazing cheeks; to inhale the sweat of his morning's exertions condensed like dew on his wiry butt-hair? And to extend my tongue deeply into him, to taste -
"Pretty good, huh?" said Jake. "You really want to get stuck into that, don't you?"
I swung round to face him, feeling myself start to blush. "What?"
"I think it'd be too much for you, though, Dad. Too intense."
I stared at him uncomprehendingly. Was I really so easy to read?
He laughed. "The drill! You were like miles away! Wishing you could have a go."
"Oh right! Yeah. Wow - if only, Jake."
"It'd be too powerful, though. It'd drag you all over the road."
I smiled as the lights changed colour and we set off again.
I glanced at the worker still drilling the tarmac as we drove past him. He was probably aware that one or two women among the queues of traffic might admire his tight buns, but I wondered if knew that the occasional man would spend a few minutes at the lights day-dreaming about rimming him. I wondered, actually, if he knew what rimming was.
As I swerved around the road-works to rejoin the flow of traffic, my semi-hard-on now thankfully softening in my trousers, Jake said, "Yesterday was pretty cool. It's so much better to see a big game... the atmosphere's completely different. We should do it again."
I was pleased he enjoyed the match. After what had happened between me and Guy, I'd had trouble focussing on the game and the extortionate price of my ticket had been rather wasted.
"Maybe we should go and see Man U next time they play?" I suggested.
He nodded. "Yeah, but we should stay over somewhere again. It was a good laugh."
I smiled. "We'll do it again, Jake. Maybe this side of Christmas if we can."
I slowed down behind a cyclist, waiting for a gap in the traffic. The shorts he was wearing were very tight and showed his buttocks off rather well. I let a couple of opportunities to pass him go by so I could get a better look.
When, eventually, I overtook him, Jake asked, "What was it like to sleep with Simon's dad?"
I glanced over at him and saw that, while he'd intended his question to sound innocent, the way he was looking at me betrayed that it had been planned and that he was curious about something. He had his mother's guile, as I was frequently reminded.
I said noncommittally, "Not too bad, I guess."
"Did you get on okay with him?" he asked.
I glanced over at him again. He was studying my face intently.
"Well, sort of. It wasn't like we were big mates or anything. But he was reasonable company for one night."
I stopped to let some kids and their mum cross the road at a zebra crossing.
He asked, slowly as if choosing his words carefully, "Was it good to... you know... spend the night with someone again... since mum left."
"What are you getting at, Jake?"
He was quiet until we set off again, and then he said, "When Guy came in to say goodnight, Simon asked him what you guys were doing."
"And what did he say?"
"He was like, 'Oh, nothing much... only bumming!'"
I threw him a look. "That's vulgar, Jake. And you shouldn't call it that."
"Well that's what he said."
I stared straight ahead, feeling annoyed that Guy had made such a crude joke. I had made every effort to stop Jake using the word 'bumming' which he'd brought back with him from a scouts trip a few years earlier after he and his friends had - if his story could be believed - spied on a couple of older boys having sex together in their hostel after lights out. For a time he'd found it hilarious to use the word whenever he could and the cartoons in his notebook, usually cleverly perceived caricatures which he'd always had a talent for, had abruptly veered towards the lewd. Since then I'd tried hard to steer him away from such smutty playground humour and to nurture a more balanced view of sexuality than my parents and my older brother had given me.
When my irritation had subsided enough for me to speak without it showing in my voice, I said as calmly as I could muster, "Guy shouldn't have said that. It's a horrible word."
"But were you?"
I glanced over at him more sternly. "Are you serious, Jake? Of course we weren't!"
Jake being Jake, he didn't know when to let up.
"But Simon's dad said you were. And it's been so long since you had a girlfriend..."
I turned on him angrily to show him that he'd gone too far. "Drop it, Jake. That's enough!"
I did a left turn onto Great Bowden Road, feeling annoyed by Jake's apparent ease at believing that his father would have opportunistic anal sex with another man who he hardly knew. The fact that Guy and I had indeed had sex together - and that what we'd done had in many ways been far more intimate - added to my discomfort.
I was going to let the subject drop but after driving a few blocks I said, more calmly, "I can't believe you would think I'd done that, Jake."
"Well... you know... it's no biggie, dad. You told me guys like to play around together sometimes even though they're not gay. So I figured that's what you were doing."
He had a point. I had told him a while ago that it was normal for some boys go through a period of being interested in other boys and that he should not feel ashamed about experimenting with his friends in sexual ways. He'd been both amused and repulsed by the suggestion and had asked, laughing, if that meant I'd be okay if I found him 'doing it' with his friend Craig in his bedroom (I think he'd subconsciously plucked Craig's name out of the air because he is the most effeminate of Jake's friends and can, in my view, sometimes be a bit flirty with him). I'd smiled and said I'd obviously prefer not to walk in on my son 'doing it' with anyone - girl or boy - but that if it happened I'd see it as a natural expression of his sexual curiosity.
So I suppose, in Jake's eyes, whatever I'd been doing with Guy had simply been my way of leading by example.
Perhaps seeing from my softening expression that I was tacitly accepting his argument, he added, "I wouldn't mind if the two of you were doing stuff."
I smiled at how permissive he was trying to be about it and how our roles had been reversed.
"Well, that's good to hear. But what Simon's dad said was just a joke - in pretty poor taste and using a word I don't like, but a joke nonetheless."
He nodded. "Well I thought that. But then there were those noises and... well..."
He shrugged. "You know. Sexual noises."
"What kind of sexual noises?"
He looked out of the window, uncomfortable at being questioned about such matters. "The sort of noises a bed makes when people... you know. And Simon's dad calling out stuff..."
I felt my face flush, stunned by what I was hearing, but I had to know, "What sort of stuff?"
He kept staring out of the window watching the houses go by. "I dunno. 'Give it to me'... that kind of stuff. Like you were... well... on top of him... doing it to him."
While I was shocked that my son had envisioned me mounting another man, for some reason I found it slightly less embarrassing that he had assumed I'd been the dominant participant. It would have seemed inexplicably worse to have him think it was my bum being humped.
He went on, "And there were... sort of... slapping sounds."
I cursed the thin walls of cheap hotels.
Struggling to think of a way out of this, I contemplated using Guy's ploy about it being a joke we had played on our sons to see if they were gullible enough to buy it, but the story sounded so lame in my head that I couldn't even bring myself to try it.
I decided instead to take advantage of the sense of openness I'd always shared with Jake about matters of sex.
I said, as sincerely as I could, "Okay, Jake. I'll be honest with you. But this stays between the two of us, okay?"
He peered over at me, no doubt intrigued by my apparent frankness.
I told him flatly, "We were masturbating."
His eyes widened in surprise. "Yeah?"
I nodded. "We had a couple of drinks, found we couldn't sleep in the hotel beds. So we masturbated to tire ourselves out. And after that we slept."
During his GCSE exams when he was getting stressed out, I'd told Jake that masturbation could sometimes be a good cure for insomnia, even if you didn't feel particularly sexy. I've no idea if he tried it - our openness has its limits - but it came in handy now to make my story sound more plausible.
Jake seemed intrigued. "But you hardly knew Simon's dad. Do guys your age do that together, even strangers?"
"Sometimes. But it's not something that we talk about. This goes no further. Okay?"
I really didn't want his mother getting wind of this; not to mention Simon.
He nodded. "Yeah, sure. No biggie." Then he added, with a mischievous smirk, "So what was his willy like? Was it as big as yours?"
I glanced over at him, unable to stop myself smiling. "I don't know, Jake. I didn't get a look at it. We were in our own beds and the light was off."
I turned right to pull into the sports ground car park and Jake asked, "So why was Simon's dad calling out stuff when he was masturbating?"
I shrugged. "I guess some guys like to be noisy when they do it. Make a song and dance of it, you know."
Jake chuckled and I smiled over at him, pleased that he was buying my story.
As I pulled into a space to drop him off, he said, "I told Simon that's what you guys were doing. I said it couldn't be that you were... you know..."
"He was listening too?"
"Yeah. We both were. And..." He paused for a moment, perhaps feeling rather manly about what he was going to say. "We were doing it, too."
I turned to face him, horrified.
Jake smiled. "Yeah. We couldn't sleep either. And... you know... hearing you guys enjoying yourselves... we joined in."
I stared at him, incredulous.
As if it wasn't bad enough that Guy and I had been overheard by our sons, I now had to contend with the fact they had been jerking off while they'd listened to us. I could almost picture them in their beds, grinning at each other while they stroked themselves at the sounds of their dads having a noisy and rather drunken homosexual encounter. Discussing what they thought the rhythmic slapping sounds might be; their imaginations thankfully too limited to recognise the sounds of Simon's dad's arse hammering down onto my eager face.
I felt mortified.
Perhaps misinterpreting my stunned expression, Jake added, reassuringly, "We didn't touch each other or anything. It wasn't like that."
I said, trying to regain a sense of normality, "It's okay, Jake. Whatever you and Simon did was okay. You know that."
He nodded and then picked up his gear. "Well I'd better go. I'll be late for practice."
As he got out of the car he grinned back at me. "It was pretty sweet though, wasn't it? The four of us doing it together, kind of..."
I tried my best to smile. "Yeah, Jake. It was sweet."
He threw me a thumbs-up and set off into the sports centre.
I wanted to sit for a few seconds and recompose myself after Jake's revelation but other cars were arriving and I had to vacate my space.
He'd seemed convinced by my story - that was something - but the fact remained that he had heard me having sex with another man and I was extremely uncomfortable about that.
As I drove home, I tried to figure out why.
It wasn't simply the fact that my son had heard me having sex. If his mother still lived with us and we were still sleeping together, no doubt he'd hear us occasionally as his room was right next to mine. And that wouldn't bother me; it was a natural part of living with your parents.
It was obviously the homosexual element which was bugging me but the reason for that wasn't immediately apparent. Jake had made it clear that he didn't mind if I wanted to experiment with other men - just as I had told him on many occasions that I would support him no matter what his own sexual orientation turned out to be - and seemed to have accepted that such encounters might arise from my prolonged loneliness in the bedroom. He'd actually been very mature about it and I should really be thankful for that rather than be feeling so troubled.
I realised, as I headed down Leicester Road to avoid the road-works which I'd got stuck in earlier, that I had assumed that whatever journey I was on sexually, wherever this was taking me, I was going it alone. To discover that I might be taking my son along with me - that he was, in some small way, aware of the changes I was going through - was, at that time, too big a development for me to easily accept.
Next story: Work and Play