I hadn't been looking for extra work. At thirty-five, I was lucky in that the money I earned was more than enough and I lived very comfortably. However, as a favour to a friend, I agreed to tutor a young man who was in his first year of university and quickly sinking beneath the weight of his mandatory full-year English course, a requirement all students had to complete, no matter their discipline or major. Ian was living away from home for the first time and, after completing a gap year, he had opted to rent a room in a house with a group of fellow first years, all of whom had been denied a spot in campus housing due to the incredible demand for such space and the lottery system used by the university to allocate rooms to first-year students. Needless to say, independent living, a lack of structure and challenging courses were proving to be a lethal combination for Ian's grade point average.
I met twenty-year-old Ian on a Saturday evening in early October, what was to become our regular meeting time over the next few months. From our first meeting, it became evident to me that besides both of us being gay, we were very different from one another, both physically and in our interests and abilities. Ian's 5'5" height and narrow frame differed from my 6' height and broad shoulders. His light brown curly hair and sapphire eyes contrasted with my black straight hair and brown eyes. His creamy skin looked pale in comparison to my olive complexion. Whereas he had a smooth chest, mine was hairy. Even more than our physical differences, our interests and preferences distinguished us completely. Ian was an outdoors guy; I preferred working out indoors. His passion was mathematics; mine was literature. Nonetheless, he was determined to pass English and I was determined to help him.
Our weekly meetings took on a familiar pattern. I would come home from various activities at 5:30pm. Ian would arrive around 6:30pm depending on which bus he could catch from campus. We would share a meal and discuss in broad strokes the things we needed to cover over the next couple of hours. After our meal, Ian would help me clean up and then he would set out his texts and tablet while I put on coffee. We would work solidly for two hours, the only interruption being our occasional need to refill our cups with fresh brewed coffee. Sometimes, we would read and discuss a text. At other times, I would help him as he worked on a writing assignment or presentation. Infrequently, we would need to do a little bit of everything. I found Ian to be incredibly attractive and this made working with him all the more enjoyable. Ian, however, did not seem to share my attraction, and thus I chose not to pursue anything and kept our relationship to that of a tutor and tutee.
Initially, Ian found everything difficult. He would become easily frustrated and want to give up. He told me that he "hated English" and that he thought the university's English course requirement "sucked" and not in a good way, a comment that made me burst out in laughter. It would take considerable cajoling and encouragement on my part to keep Ian from giving up. I would think of more and more interesting ways in which to engage Ian with the literature and, slowly, our perseverance paid off. On his second essay of the term, Ian received an A and, in retrospect, this served as a watershed moment. Suddenly, Ian could be excellent at both mathematics and English and from that point on, Ian's attitude changed. He became engaged in the literature he was studying and our discussions became more animated and interesting. This was despite the fact that with each successive Saturday, he appeared more tired and stressed. I could sense that something was wrong. However, when I confronted him, he said he had a lot on his plate with trying to improve his grades and with exams coming up so soon.
One Saturday, in early December, two months after we had begun meeting, things seemed different. Ian looked exhausted, but had a frenetic energy about him. He seemed to be both nervous and flirtatious. Though he looked wan, he kept flashing me with his brilliant smile and, as we were cleaning up, he made a point of making contact with me. As we stood at the sink washing the dishes, his hand would brush against mine as he took the soapy dishes to rinse them clean. The contact was having a predictable impact on me. It was exciting to have him so close to me and I was becoming aroused. I rinsed my hands and turned off the tap. I turned towards Ian and he turned towards me, never once averting his gaze. For the first time, I saw something in his eyes beyond that of an interested tutee working with his tutor. There was desire there and something else, though at that time I could not put my finger on it. It bothered me, but I didn't have time to think about it. Ian had leaned into me and I felt a jolt of electricity as our lips touched. Ian put his arms around my neck and pulled me closer to him. Our kissing became frantic and I began pulling his t-shirt up his back so that I could feel the incredible warmth and smoothness of his skin. Ian raised his arms and I pulled off his t-shirt. Ian pulled mine off of me and, once again, we kissed with renewed frenzy. Ian led me to my bedroom and he undressed me before undressing himself. Ian climbed onto the bed and I climbed over him. We consumed each other with our kisses.
He rolled me over onto my back and quickly moved to devour my raging erection. He sucked me hungrily, taking more and more of my cock into his mouth each time he lowered his head and let his lips slide down my shaft. I pulled him off of me and we repositioned ourselves so that we could suck each other simultaneously. Although his chest was smooth, he had a dense patch of pubic hair and there was hair at the base of his cock and on his scrotum. As I sucked his beautiful cock, I used my hands to cup his ass cheeks. I parted his firm mounds so that I could stroke his hole with my finger. I felt its soft sponginess and was overcome by a desire to taste it just as I had tasted his lips, tongue and cock. The thought of sticking my tongue into his hole pushed me even closer to cumming and I could taste the precum from Ian's cock as it flowed onto my tongue. I sensed that he, too, was on the precipice. We kept sucking, increasing our pace as we took each other over the edge. I knew I was about to cum and just as I was about to spurt, I felt Ian's cock become rigid as the first blast of his semen hit the back of my mouth and slid down my throat. A second blast and then a third filled my mouth with his semen and I swallowed repeatedly. I, too, began ejaculating in Ian's mouth, filling it with my seed and could feel him swallowing, just as I was. Spent at last, though nowhere near satisfied, we sucked each other's cocks dry and then brought our lips together in a salty wet kiss.
We kept kissing and soon our cocks became rigid again. I was desperate to taste Ian's ass and I made him lie down on his stomach with a pillow under him so that I could both see and taste his beautiful pink hole. I was not disappointed in either respect. His blushing hole could not have been more perfect. Almost completely smooth, though I could feel the gentlest of undulations as my tongue swirled around it, it opened just enough as I probed into its centre. I feasted on his ass as I listened to Ian's lusty moans. I loosened him further with one and then two wet fingers, stroking his velvety insides.
"Fuck me! Fuck me, now!" With Ian's lascivious permission, I slicked my cock with my saliva and positioned it at his now loosened, lubricated hole. With an insistent push, I entered him, pushing forward until my cock was completely inside him. I began to fuck him, pushing in completely and then almost completely pulling out. Again and again I repeated the motion, our bodies slapping into each other with every thrust. Then I pulled out of Ian and flipped him onto his back. Ian took hold of his legs and I reinserted my cock in his ass. Once again, we rutted, oblivious to our surroundings.
"I want to ride you," panted Ian. We switched positions and Ian straddled me. He took my throbbing penis in his hand and guided it to his hole. He lowered himself onto it and then he began pulling up and pushing down on my cock, never once letting it loose from his grip. Ian jerked himself as I held onto his hips. As his stroking increased in pace so did his bucking.
"I'm cumming!! Fuck!! I'm cumming!!" Ian yelled as he expelled thick white jets of semen from his penis. I felt his cum land on my chest in heavy drops and the sight, sound and feeling of his climax pushed me to my own. I thrusted deeply into him and filled his channel with my semen. Exhausted, he collapsed beside me, both of us still breathing heavily from the intensity of our fucking. I turned to Ian and kissed his wet, mussed up hair.
"I'm just going to clean myself up," I whispered. Ian nodded his head.
When I returned to my bed, I found Ian fast asleep. Without disturbing him, I curled around him and covered us both with a soft duvet.
I awoke in the morning to find that Ian was no longer beside me. I pulled on a pair of boxers and made my way to the kitchen. I heard Ian's voice. He was on the phone.
"Yah, I'm sure he'll let me stay here. He won't say no after last night. I slept with him just like you suggested."
I stood absolutely still, shocked by what I had heard. I was angry, but more than that, I was hurt. I couldn't understand why Ian would behave so abominably. Suddenly, the look in Ian's eyes last night made sense. There had been some desire, of that I was sure, but that little desire had been tempered by calculation and now I understood why. Ian had wanted to use sex for his own benefit, and not because he had wanted to be with me.
"I'll call you later once I..." Ian stopped speaking abruptly when he realized I was looking right at him. He swallowed and began to speak. "I - I -" Ian couldn't find the words.
"Wow! You must have a very low opinion of me." I was fighting to keep calm despite my anger. "If you needed a place to stay, all you needed to do was ask. I have plenty of space. You didn't need to get me into bed." My voice was shaking and getting louder by the minute. "Did you think I would say no to you if you had asked? HOW COULD YOU THINK THAT I WOULD EVER ASK FOR SEX IN PAYMENT FOR SUCH A REQUEST?" Had an object been nearby, I might have hurled it at him,
Ian looked scared. He had never seen me lose my temper with anyone. Tears welled up in his eyes and I could see that he was struggling to find the right words.
"M-M-M-Michael. I... I..." Words failed him.
"You need to leave. Right. Now." I enunciated the last words very clearly to drive home my point.
"I... I... I don't have anywhere to go." He spoke between his tears. "My roommates threw me out and I have been sleeping in the library. I've been showering at the gym and last night's dinner was my first real meal in a week. I have no money. I couldn't afford to pay you rent and this was the only way I could think of so that you would let me stay for free." Now Ian broke down completely.
There was no way Ian could have been telling lies. He was a picture of abject misery. I set aside my own feelings of hurt and walked over to him. When I approached him, he recoiled, as if to avoid a strike and my anger returned with a vengeance.
"FUCK! Do you think I would ever hit you??" Ian looked at me, further shamed by his instinctive reaction. "Look. Exams are around the corner. You've worked way too hard to let it all go to waste. You can stay here. The basement is fully developed and you'll have your own bedroom and bathroom. There isn't a kitchen down there so we'll have to share. The pantry is fully stocked. Once your exams are over and you get back from Christmas break, you'll need to find a new place to live."
Ian nodded through tears of relief. "I'm so sorry."
"I know." Though I wasn't ready to forgive him, my anger had begun to subside. Under any other circumstances, a hot fuck session with a stranger who couldn't remember my name in the morning would not have bothered me. I would have laughed and most likely not remembered his name either. I wouldn't have even given it a second thought. Truth be told, I would have probably used it as a great ego boost - the one more notch on the bedpost kind - but to be used by Ian, someone who I cared about, someone who I thought of as more than just a tutee, more than just a friend, had hurt deeply. I simply wasn't the kind of guy who just slept with anyone.
Over the next two weeks, Ian and I fell into a new routine, a routine based on avoidance. It was too hard to be in the same space. I would leave very early in the morning. He would return very late at night. We barely spoke to each other. On weekends, he would bury himself in his textbooks at the library. I would go about my normal routine. A few times, when I was up late and Ian would come into the kitchen, I would catch him looking at me with something like regret. Though I knew that look, I convinced myself otherwise. I did not want to ascribe feelings to him that he might not have and I didn't want to be gullible, or vulnerable, with him ever again. Though I was older and should have taken the high road, I couldn't. He had awakened in me the demon I had been fighting with since entering my thirties. Would I find the right man to share my life with or end up alone? Until his moment of betrayal, I could have easily pictured myself with Ian, despite the difference in our ages. In fact, I had pictured myself with him, albeit secretly. Now that picture could not be trusted.
Ian's departure at Christmas time was a great relief for me. I had survived the two weeks of his living under the same roof without breaking down or making a fool out of myself. There had been so many times when I wanted to reach out to him, but I had held back. Even if he responded as I hoped he would, how could I trust that response? I had thought myself a good judge of character. Yet, I had not been able to see past Ian's crude subterfuge. I kept reliving that moment at the sink in my head and I kept chiding myself for not stopping and taking a moment to consider why Ian's look was not one of complete desire. All the pieces of the puzzle had been there, his initial lack of interest, his tiredness, the extra stress, but I had not put them together. Instead, I had given in. Sure, the sex had been incredible and he had cum twice, but how much of that had been because he was with me and not because of the stimulation he was receiving, stimulation any vibrator or fleshjack could have provided?
January came and went and I would be lying if I said that I did not wonder about Ian. For three months, he had been a constant presence in my life, a beautiful clock by which to mark time that suddenly stops working. On Valentine's Day, a group of us, both women and men, all single, got together for a sumptuous meal cooked by our mutual friend and gourmet chef, Gary, at his home, followed by a ridiculous and very funny night of critiquing and rating gay, straight and lesbian porn. Given that it was bitterly cold outside, we ended the festivities earlier than we normally would have and each of us proceeded to our respective homes. As I pulled into the driveway, the night sky seemed very dark and the streetlight normally so bright in front of my neighbour's home, had gone out, adding to the gloomy atmosphere. I tried vainly to convince myself that these were indeed legitimate reasons for the way I was feeling and not because I was thinking about Ian.
When I entered the house after removing my shoes and coat in the mudroom, something felt different. Concerned, I tiptoed towards the kitchen, desperately hoping that nothing was wrong. The lamp in the living room was on though I had definitely turned it off before I had left. Soft music was playing and I recognized the song immediately - A Thousand Years as performed by Boyce Avenue. Again, I had made sure to turn off my iPod before leaving for the party. I was at a loss to explain what was going on until I saw a figure seated on my couch. It took me several moments to recover from the shock once I realized who was sitting there. It was Ian and he was looking directly at me.
"What are you doing in my house?" My tone was much harsher than I had intended it to be.
"You never asked for your key back and I had to speak to you." Ian spoke quietly, his cheeks reddening.
"Have you not heard of a great little invention called the cell phone? It's a pretty great tool that helps people to communicate with each other." I was more than a little annoyed.
"I didn't think you would respond if I called or texted." There was a weary angst in his voice.
"Okay. You have a point. Tell me. I'm listening."
"Please sit down." It felt strange to be asked to take a seat in my own home. I sat in a wing chair, diagonally across from Ian. Ian looked up at me. His beautiful blue eyes were pools of emotion. He took a deep breath before resuming. "I've come to your house every day since I got back from the Christmas break. Each time, I've wanted to knock on your door and, each time, I've walked away, too scared to do so. I've tried to figure out how to say what I want to say hundreds of times and it has never sounded right." He paused briefly to draw in another breath. He looked at me, his eyes shiny. "Michael, I'm so sorry for what I did. There's no excuse for my actions. No matter how hard I've tried, I can't forget the look in your eyes after you heard me on the phone. I can't forget your anger, your disgust. I would do anything to go back to the morning after we had sex. Instead of getting out of bed, I would have stayed with you, waited for you to wake up so that I could have told you everything that was happening to me. I would have told you about how my roommates and I had been fighting for weeks, how they double-crossed me, cheated me out of two months' rent, destroyed my things and threw me out." He was overcome by emotion and could not continue.
"Why would you think we needed to have sex so that I would give you a place to stay?" More than anything, I had wanted an answer to this question.
Ian swallowed hard and nodded, acknowledging my right to ask this question most of all. "I was desperate. You were already tutoring me for free. On top of that, you were feeding me the most incredible meals and giving me food to take home with me. Then you performed a miracle and made me enjoy English, a subject I hated until I met you. I started getting better grades in English than in math. How could I then ask for more? A guy I had been partnering with in Physics suggested that I sleep with you so that you got something in return. I just needed a place for a couple of weeks and figured I would let you sleep with me a few times so that we were even. He was the guy I was speaking to on the phone when you overheard the conversation."
"So you were just going to prostitute yourself without regard to how I felt about you? That you were more to me than just a good friend? I mean, you must have realized that I had real feelings for you."
"I knew you had feelings for me. I was counting on that. What I didn't count on was my having feelings beyond friendship for you." He had spoken the last sentence in a near whisper.
"What?" I couldn't believe what I had heard and it made absolutely no sense.
"You were my best friend..."
"Oh..." Suddenly, I did not want to hear anymore, but Pandora's box had been opened.
"... but I literally had nothing left. I knew that what I was doing was wrong, but I convinced myself that I would somehow make it up to you. I didn't exactly know how. I just had to get through a couple of weeks and then, over the holidays, with exams and term papers out of the way, I would have time to figure out what to do next. Except..."
"Except that I overheard you."
"Except that you overheard me. Michael, please believe me when I say that I would give anything to change what happened. I was so stupid. I was so stupid because in that instant, I realized I had traded a lifetime with you for two weeks' shelter in the loneliest place I have ever been. You were in the same house as me, but you were a world away. You avoided me and even when you looked at me, it was like you were seeing right through me and focusing on the objects behind me. And I knew that no matter what I said, the damage had been done. I had given you no reason to believe me. How could I then turn around and tell you all the things I had realized."
"What things did you realize?" Nothing he said thus far had been a surprise, but now I just needed to know the whole story, once and for all, so that I could stop thinking about him.
"I realized that I was kidding myself when I thought that I could just have sex with you and feel nothing, that I could go on being just a friend, that I could figure out a way to undo the damage I was doing, that being in your arms, in bed with you, was the only thing that mattered, that... that..." he buried his face in his hands.
I stood up, walked the short distance towards him and stopped in front of him. He looked up at me, forlorn and miserable. I gripped his arm and raised him off the couch so that he when he stood, our bodies touched. He never once stopped staring into my eyes. This time, I leaned in and kissed him. With his hands, he pulled my face even closer to his so that he could deepen our kiss. I encircled him with one arm and with my other arm, I lifted his legs so that I could carry him. He held onto me as I carried him from the living room to the bedroom.
Once in the bedroom, between hungry kisses, we took off each other's clothes until finally we were naked. I kissed him from his forehead to his eyes to his cheeks to his neck. I tongued his earlobes and his pink nipples. I sucked on his fingers and toes and gently bit the soft insides of his thighs. Everywhere I touched him, I marked him, claimed him as my own. At last, I took his penis, glistening with precum into my mouth, running my tongue up and down the underside of his shaft, before closing my lips around his rigid length. I bobbed up and down repeatedly before raising my head off of his cock. I turned my attention to his testicles and stimulated each one with my lips and tongue and then returned to his cock. As I sucked, Ian placed his hands on my head. He began thrusting his hips upward, pushing his penis deeper into my mouth. In a frenzy of movement, he began to ejaculate repeatedly, filling my mouth with his thick sperm.
Ian pulled me up towards him and we kissed, sharing, as we had done so many months ago, the taste of his cum. Now it was his turn to explore and mark his territory and, just as I had done with him, he traced a path with his kisses, his licks and his bites from the very top of my head to my toes. Each touch rippled through me, engorging my already erect penis even further. Finally, he took my erection into his mouth, positioning himself so that his ass was towards my face and I could eat him out. As he soaked my cock in his saliva, I did the same to his hole. He released my penis from his mouth and swiveled around so that he was astride me and we could look into each other's eyes. He lowered himself onto me and I felt the heat of his channel engulf my cock. Only after I was completely inside of him did we begin to fuck. He rode me with abandon and I surrendered to him completely. We spoke in a guttural language punctuated by heavy breathing and groaning.
Sweating with the exertion, I stayed his movements and turned him on his back, with his legs in the air. I re-entered him and we resumed our copulation. I bent down to kiss him and our tongues frantically touched until our lips collided. He wrapped his arms around my neck and linked his feet around my back. I began to thrust faster and faster and his breathy chant of "Yes! Yes! Yes!" told me that we were both on the verge of climaxing. I could not hold out any longer and with one final motion, I pushed myself as deeply into him as I could and inseminated him repeatedly with spurts of my cum. I resumed fucking him, feeling my semen around my cock as I slid in and out of him. The sensations overwhelmed Ian and I felt his body stiffen as incredible streams of cum shot out of him and painted his torso. I slid out of him and took his spent cock into my mouth. I licked each pearl of his semen off his chest, relishing the taste and texture, reveling in the knowledge that just as my DNA was inside of him, his was inside of me. I worked my way up to his neck, his chin, and, at last, his lips.
I laid down and pulled him to me. He nestled himself alongside me and rested his head on my chest. I kissed his wet hair and he whispered the words that he had been unable to say before.
"I love you, Michael."