Uncontrollably Torn

Story by Habu on 28 May 2008

Readers: 702 Score: 4.9 (4 votes)

Ahh, the days of drifting down to the square after lunch and sitting around ogling the local Turkish Cypriot men and letting them ogle me until I got that certain look from one I fancied and took him up to my Lawrence Durrell-rented villa and let him vigorously, joyously, and noisily fuck my brains out on a lounger under the sun on the terrace overlooking the Mediterranean.

I laid the pen down. The house on the hill at Bellapais overlooking the Mediterranean below, unseen in the dark of night, but heard in the constant lapping of the waters on the rocky shore, was quiet. Or was it? It seemed to be whispering to me again, compelling me to write what I had written when I intended to be writing something entirely different. The light of the lamp on the desk was dimming, evidence of the perpetual power problems of the archaic Turkish Cypriot electrical plant. The shadows cast in the room almost took human shape. How many had sat at this desk before me? Had they heard the same whispers? Or was this my personal torment? Uncontrollably torn between two impulses, two lives that could not cohabit. Here because I had made a decision, taken a stand, renounced a fetish, but torn, drawn to defeat, by the spirit of this house, as evidenced in what I was compelled to write - and then to act out.

I rose from the carved pine chair and tread quietly across the Turkish carpet, seeking the painting in the studio beyond, checking to see if he had finished it. Wanting him to finish it, a completed painting somehow being the signal of my release from that other impulse.

No. There we were, the two of us, staring out of the canvas in our never-ending reverie at the cafe table, me perpetually lifting my wine glass in salute to him. But only rough sketchings on glaring white canvas where our bodies faded toward the lower edge. The background elaborately, lushly painted. But the canvas still unfinished at its foundation. He hadn't wanted to tell me, or so it seemed. But back in London, when he had given me the choice - no, the ultimatum - he had blurted out that the painting would not be complete until he could be sure of me.

And when would that be, I wondered. Certainly not tonight. Not with what the spirits of this house had compelled me to ink on the paper this evening. I was drawn back to the desk, and I sat, reluctantly, once again, and picked up the pen and let my hand write what it would. I am so, so weak.

And then back down to the square in the twilight after dinner with those fairy lights in the olive trees around the fringe of the stone cafe terrace, and, in that soft light and twittering laughter of the Mediterranean men and wisps of strong Turkish tobacco drifting up, eyeing and being eyed until I got the certain look from one I fancied and took him back up to the villa and let him fuck me in long, slow, sweeping strokes on the terrace under the stars.

'Mark, it's late. Come to bed, love.'

Val's voice, thick and distant with the edge of sleep, intruded as if from the other side of the murmuring sea. Struck with guilt, my hand dropped the pen. I rose once again and moved to the door into the bedroom Val and I shared, a room jutting out on the cliffside terrace toward the sea, with open windows on three sides to the night breezes and the sound of the waves crashing on the rocks far below.

The old, iron bed in the center of the room on wall-to-wall straw matting. A fire still smoldering in the fireplace on the wall adjoining the main wing of the house. Val, naked, and beautifully stretched out in the center of the bed.

I moved to the bed and sat down and laid my hand on the belly of my young lover. Lord Cramner. Such a heady title for the slender, willowy young man who had stolen my heart. Valery Cramner to those not impressed with titles. My darling Val to me. Brilliant, sensitive, artistic, and high strung when awake and in his element with paint brush and oil pallet in his sensuous hands. But vulnerable and young and beckoning now in repose. A smile stealing across his face now, as he felt the heat of my palm on his belly, his eyes still closed. A lock of his curly, shoulder-length, soft-brown hair fell across his face, and I moved my free hand to brush it out of his eyes.

Val took my hand in his and raised it to his lips. He kissed the fingertips and then took the index finger between his full lips and gave languid suck. His eyes still closed, he was only half awake, but this was when he wanted me the most.

I pulled my hand back and stood by the bed. As he turned onto his belly with a sigh, knowing what came next, wanting it, I undid the sash of my robe and let the garment fall off my shoulders and to the floor. I sat on the bed again, this time below his thighs and I leaned my face down, and as I parted his pert, smooth-skinned orbs, I moved my lips and tongue to his puckered, warm entrance.

Val sighed for me as I gently rimmed him, preparing him; he moaned and moved his hips when I entered him with lubricated fingers; he purred when I stretched my body along his back and encased his thighs closely in mine; he cried out softly as I buried my lips in the hollow of his neck and began sliding my cock inside his channel; he groaned and slowly churned his hips, and turned his head, eyes still closed, to capture my lips with his as I slowly but relentless moved in and out, ever deeper, inside him. He writhed under me as I mastered him, the older man taking the younger lover, ever deeper and lust-induced thicker, with ever more forceful thrustings. His eyes opened and his back arched against my heaving chest as he spread his seed on the sheeting of the bed. And then he just collapsed into himself, closed his eyes again, and murmured endearments and encouragement as I reached my own climax.

When I felt his breathing had become regular and relaxed, I gently withdrew from him, rose and moved, naked, and now tumescent, back to the desk in the other room. I sat and lifted up the pen with one hand. The other hand glided down my belly, through my pubic bush, and into my lap.

And maybe, if he was really, really beautiful and masterful, taking him back to my bed for a night of sleep broken by brief periods of wanton lust, waking to the feel of a hot poker at my hole and a wheedling whisper for permission at my ear and arching back to accept the homage of a throbbing need to be deep inside me. Breakfasting on the terrace by the small pool and then pulling him into the pool and wrapping my legs around his waist and letting the swirling water soften the rhythmic in and outing as I threw my head back and watched the morning Mediterranean light filter through the sighing branches of the olive trees and thought about my after-lunch visit to the cafe on the square, already assessing which eyes I would respond to today.

The pen dropped. I was stroking myself, close once more to ejaculation. Uncontrollably torn between my young lover and his ultimatum and my weak-willed instincts. Having everything I would ever need in him; but my racing mind - and now the spirits of this house, of this jaded village of Bellapais - telling me that there was more than that and that I wanted it. My breathing heavy, my hand working my cock, my mind wandering to the men I'd seen in the open-air cafe in the Bellapais square just down the winding, uneven cobble-stoned narrow street winding down from this ledge into the Byzantine abbey forecourt. Searching the young, masculine Turkish men's faces in my mind, seeing their interest. Straining my ears to hear their late-night banter and the sound of the stringed baglama above the crashing of the surf far down the cliffside. Imagining them coming for me, fucking me on the chaise lounge on the terrace by the pool overlooking the blue Mediterranean. Throwing my head back, groaning, twitching, lurching, and then going dormant, collapsing back into the carved pine chair at the writing desk. Once more losing the struggle. Once more betraying my young lover.

* * *

I wondered if Lawrence Durrell had known the deck was being stacked against us when he offered up this refuge, his own retreat for writing, in northern Cyprus, far from the London swirl, with its distractions and damnations, when Val had decided that we must flee or part. I wonder if the house had tried to pull Durrell down to the intoxicating, devouring men at the cafe in the Bellapais square as well when he was writing his Alexandria Quartet here. When that possibility occurred to me, I poured over my copy of the quartet, looking for evidence, but, as broodingly sexual and sensuous as that master work was, I saw no indication of this in his writing. Perhaps it was just me. Perhaps the house preyed on my weakness alone - or found the special weakness of each of its tenants and slowly drove them crazy with their inability to fight their instincts and base desires.

Durrell had certainly been responsible for bringing Val and me together. When the London cafe owner had conjured up the idea to re-create a Brighten wine cafe on the banks of the Thames, Durrell had suggested a theme of the Brighton Circle, a group of writers, I among them, who frequented such a cafe in Brighton for our self-important witty-repartee gatherings. And he had suggested portraits of the Brighton Circle writers at play for the cafe's walls as well as the matching of the trendy oil portraitist, the young Lord Cramner, with these subjects.

Val had me sit last. As eccentric and willful as he was brilliant, Val had me pose at his own estate on warm summer evenings, while he swirled around the canvas in just low-slung baggy cargo pant shorts. He was beautiful and young and vibrant, and I couldn't help being smitten by him.

When, at last, he was ready for me, he simply stripped off his shorts and leaned down and took my surprised lips in his, unzipping my pants, as I sat at that cafe table, my arm numb from raising the glass in stiff pose. Holding my cock that had been hard for endless settings of watching him glide around his canvas in the nearly altogether, he descended his pert little buttocks into my lap and languidly fucked himself to our mutual satiation.

I don't know exactly when he had made his decision, but when I first was permitted to see the progress of his work on my portrait, he was painting me in the left quadrant of the canvas, with a fruit-laden grapevine-covered trellis in the other quadrant. When I was permitted to view the work after we had fucked, the trellising was being replaced with another figure, the artist himself. The facial features of both figures on the canvas unmistakably were Val and me - but the lower half of the painting remained simply a rough sketch of bodies to come.

There are few secrets in the arts world on the relatively small island of England, and the increasingly torrid love affair between Val and me was not one of them. Neither was a secret kept of my continued occasional casual-pickup man sex or of the sizzling scandal raised when after a particularly vigorous and invigorating Cambridge rugby match I attended with a Cambridge student son of a duke, I got drunk and let the duke's son and most of his rugby mates take turns fucking me throughout the night in his college rooms. I had always melted for vigorous and multiple partners, and I didn't give this adventure a second thought - until Val did.

Val gave it a loud and pointed second thought. And when Val's father heard the full extent of the unkept secrets, he also gave the matter a second thought. He gave Val an ultimatum. And Val, in turn, gave me an ultimatum: him or wantonness, not both. Val's father's ultimatum had been more stringent; it had excluded me from Val's life altogether.

Lawrence Durrell offered us a retreat at the villa he let for his writing escapes on the northern coast of Cyprus where we could escape together, wounded father unwitting. And I made my pledge to Val, telling him I chose him - and constancy - without reservation; that I could cut myself off from the siren song of casual lays and multiple partners if he would only have me still.

I didn't take this village and this house and its whisperings and enticements into account, though.

We'd been here for two months and still Val had not finished the portrait. He still wasn't sure of me. And he had every right not to be sure of me. I sat down repeatedly to work on my novel of the moment, and my hand repeatedly turned to the enticement of the smirking men of the cafe in the Bellapais square.

I had gone there once, quite innocently. But I had found myself ogling those laughing, muscular, hirsute Turkish men, with their easy, open enjoyment of life and their jovial camaraderie, their dusky skin and flashing eyes and curly black hair. And I found they were ogling me back. Sizing me up. Knowing that interesting and rich British men lodged at the Durrell villa. Thinking of what they could extract from me. Their slitted eyes telling me that sex was among the treasures they wondered might be attainable.

I did not go down to the square again. At least not until Val was asked to go into Nicosia for a weekend and speak on his art at a British Council program. If he only hadn't left me alone for that weekend.

Friday night I was restless and alone. An infrequent rain kept me trapped inside, and I picked up pen to work on a new chapter of my novel. I put pen to paper in the dim, flickering light of the desk lamp.

Ahh, the days of drifting down to the square after lunch and sitting around ogling the local Turkish Cypriot men and letting them ogle me until I got that certain look from one I fancied and took him up . . .

I threw the pen down and cried out in my frustration. The electricity flicked and chose that moment to go out, no doubt in reaction to what passed as a rain storm on this arid island. I withdrew to the bedroom and lit the fire. I undid my sash and let my robe sink to the floor. The images pressed into my consciousness, starting my juices to flow. If Val were here, we'd be fucking. I closed my eyes and gave in to my furies.

And then back down to the square in the twilight after dinner with those fairy lights in the olive trees around the fringe of the stone cafe terrace, and, in that soft light and twittering laughter of the Mediterranean men and wisps of strong Turkish tobacco drifting up, eyeing and being eyed until I got the certain look from one I fancied and took him back up to the villa and let him fuck me in long, slow, sweeping strokes on the terrace under the stars.

My hands glided all up and down my body. I could hear the sound of the surf below above the pattering of the rain against the windows. I was stroking myself off, my eyes tightly shut, my body swaying back and forth on the balls of my feet in the heat coming off the flickering fireplace. I staggered and fell back on the bed and continued to stroke myself to completion, trying my best to bring the face and willowy body of my young lover into my imagination, but only seeing a swirl of grinning, dusky-skinned Turkish men down in the Bellapais square cafe clicking their tongues and making rude noises and gestures and grinning their knowing grins at me.

The next morning it was as if it hadn't rained for months. The sky was clear, the sun was hot, and the lap pool on the terrace was inviting. I dove in and swam laps, pulling myself along as quickly as I could, until I was near to exhaustion. I pulled myself out of the pool and padded over to the chaise lounge and collapsed, to sleep and dream.

And maybe, if he was really, really beautiful and masterful, taking him back to my bed for a night of sleep broken by brief periods of wanton lust, waking to the feel of a hot poker at my hole and a wheedling whisper for permission at my ear and arching back to accept the homage of a throbbing need to be deep inside me.

I opened my eyes to find that I had pushed my bathing trunks down and was stroking myself. Dusk was approaching and the villa was whispering to me. Or was that the wind filtering through the pine trees higher up on the slopes of the Kyrenia Range mountains? And the surf. I could hear the surf. And the masculine, sing song voices of the Turkish men rising up from the Bellapais square cafe down the slope.

I rose up from the chaise lounge, like a zombie, stripped off my bathing trunks, and went through the French doors into the bedroom. I pulled on a pair of baggy cargo pant shorts and a mesh athletic T and a pair of sandals and moved toward the front door. I made a short detour into the studio. All this time and the painting wasn't finished. He still didn't trust me. We could not be complete, safe until he did. I could not be strong; as long as he questioned me, I could not trust myself. I was so weak.

I drifted down the narrow cobble-stone street, drawn by the light laughter and joking of the many-toned masculine voices. I sat at a cafe table beside a trellis supporting a climbing, fruit-laden grape vine and ordered a bottle of Cankaya wine. There was a brief silence across the square when I moved to the table, and then the chatter resumed. They seemed to be talking about me, though. They were ogling me and I ogled them. It wasn't long before one of the younger, more handsome, more adventuresome of the Turkish men drifted over to my table and sat down and wondered if I might share my wine with him. That was fine with me. His smile was beautifully infectious. Once seated, though, he didn't want wine; he wanted Efes beer. This was fine with me; more wine for me. In time, two of us friends, also very presentable and good-humored, joined us and were more than pleased and convivial and attentive when I ordered more beer - and wine.

Later that night, the four of us stumbled up to the Bellapais villa. The first of the young men who had come to my table fucked me on the iron bed, me on my back with my legs spread and him standing between my legs and commanding my gull attention with his flashing, laughing eyes as he enjoyed me in long languid strokes, while one of the other men got the fire going. When the first of the Turks was finished, he turned me on my belly, and the stouter, thicker-cocked of his two friends knelt at my head with his knees wedged below my chest and face fucked me while the third, profusely hirsute and muscular young man thrust hard and long and noisily inside me from the rear. The two exchanged places and the stouter of the Turks stretched me to the limit with his throbbing cock.

We all took a midnight swim in the lap pool on the terrace then, and they each fucked me again on the chaise lounge before prompting me to empty my billfold for them and stumbling jovially and satisfied back down the cobble-stone street to the coffee shop in the square, where the men's evening was still in full swing.

* * *

Three days later, after a bout of heavy drinking on my part and a very satisfying but ultimately bitter sweet fucking of Val in our iron bed in front of a roaring fire, I awoke to an empty house. I called his name from the bed, wanting him again before we started our day. But there was nothing but silence. A strange silence. I heard no crashing of the Mediterranean surf, no masculine babbling from the square below. No whispering from the house. The house had won; it need not whisper enticingly to me again.

I knew he was gone before I rose from the bed. I pulled out bureau drawers and opened the closet, only to see what belonged to me, nothing that belonged to Val. I took up my robe and wrapped it around my shoulders and tied off the sash. I padded out to the study. There, on the top of the desk was the damning document. I looked down at the top sheet, and saw my own handwriting.

And then back down to the square in the twilight after dinner with those fairy lights in the olive trees around the fringe of the stone cafe terrace, and, in that soft light and twittering laughter of the Mediterranean men and wisps of strong Turkish tobacco drifting up, eyeing and being eyed until I got the certain look from one I fancied and took him back up to the villa and let him fuck me in long, slow, sweeping strokes on the terrace under the stars.

I was sure I had not left that out on the desk for Val to see.

I moved into the studio, hoping that I was wrong, that I would find him there, happily painting on our portrait. But, of course I wasn't wrong. The only evidence of Val still there was the painting. I went over and stood in front of it. It took me several moments to really see it, to realize what he had done to it. The painting was finished now, but it no longer was a painting of Val and me at the table, saluting each other with raised glasses of wine. Where his figure had been was now, once again, a lushly painted trellis with a fruit-heavy grapevine winding up it. Val had evaporated. I knew then that Val irrevocably was lost to me. I sat alone at the table in the painting now. Had I really looked so sad in that painting all along?

I went back to the bedroom and sank onto the iron bed and cried myself to sleep. When I awoke, it was dusk. I rose, pulled on a pair of shorts, a T, and a pair of sandals, and gingerly made my way down the narrow cobble-stone road to the cafe in the Bellapais square. I picked out a table beside the trellis holding up the fruit-heavy grapevine as darkness descended and the fairy lights in the olive trees around the fringe of the stone cafe terrace began to twinkle.

And, in that soft light and twittering laughter of the Mediterranean men and wisps of strong Turkish tobacco drifting up, I eyed the men and I was eyed in return until I got the certain look from one I fancied. I spoke briefly with him and his equally hunky friend and took them back up to the villa and let them fuck me, in succession and then together, in long, slow, sweeping strokes on the terrace under the stars.

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