Chapter 2

"You know I'm not going to break you can drive faster than this you know."

"I just don't want to hit another patch of black ice Randy. I don't think you're up for that do you? So just sit there and enjoy the ride we'll be at you house before you know it. You want to stop anywhere anyplace before we get there? Or should I hurry up and have an accident and we can go back to the hospital? I'm sure they'd love to see you back for a few more days?

"All right, fine. Have it your way."

"I will since I'm the one driving thank you very much."

I couldn't help but laugh at him now. He was right of course and was only thinking of my safety. He was right to be concerned the roads had been covered and could have black ice on them. It had been the cause of my accident and I certainly didn't need another trip to the hospital at the point.

"I'm sorry thanks for being careful Den I mean it I certainly did not want to return there any time soon, you're right for being careful." Instead of being my usual hardheaded dumb ass self.

"Wow that must have been hard for you to say. And I'm not being a smart ass either Randy. I just know how you are." He was right of course but at the moment I just didn't know what to say to him. It wasn't much longer and we were pulling into my driveway. Getting me into the house was a little bit of a chore, however Den finally just picked me up and carried me in. It was obvious that he had spent a little time here preparing for my arrival without telling me. He had set up the living room just a little differently so that my big overstuffed chair was now directly facing my large screen television. He had set up a small table next to it with supplies on it for me to work with. Den had brought everything home the day before and had set up my laptop and my pencils and writing tablets sitting there. He had told me he was going to just drop off so we wouldn't have to worry about them today. Instead he had taken the time to get me organized. How did he know?

He got me situated in my chair and made sure I was comfortable. He had all the mail stacked neatly for me to go through right next to the chair. Ha...he had thought of everything it seemed. Just like David used to do for me. I had to stop comparing him to David he wasn't David and would never be him. I must be tired it doesn't take much once you have spent a few days in the hospital and come home. They say for every day you spend in the hospital; it takes three to recuperate once you get home. Never mind if you've had any kind of surgery. My patience with myself was wearing thin and I knew it, I could feel it. It was then that Den made his presence known.

"Would you like me to make you something to eat? If not I'll strip your bed so it's fresh for you when you get in later on." I don't know why it was a big deal first of all, is was a simple question wasn't it? And secondly he was only thinking of my comfort later on when I went to bed that night. But noooooo I had to be mister dip shit again. Mr. frickin hard head. AGAIN. So with a pissing tone in my voice, of course. I opened my mouth without thinking what's new?

"You don't have to make anything for me to eat and you don't have to change the damn sheets we just fucking got here take a chill for Christ's sake man!" Does the word moron or asshole mean anything to you all? It certainly did to me at the moment, as in I was the one being it. A major one. Den looked at me from where he was standing or I should say leaning against the wall. Arms folded across his chest and just leaning there and looking at me, not saying a damn word. Just staring. You want to talk about a guilty feeling eating you up? I really tried to look back at him.....yeah I did...like shit I did. That lasted about maybe ten fifteen seconds and I had to look down. Motherfucker. And he didn't move. Great. Just fucking great. Now he was waiting for me to say something I supposed, which he had every right to.

"That was completely uncalled for and.........I'm sorry..........I was..........an asshole." Holy Shit! Did that really just come out of my mouth??? OMG! It must be the drugs. I mean I did mean it really I did he was only being nice when he asked me about making something for me and making my bed; again he was just being nice. Why am I making it so hard for him? Walls Randy Walls! Why are you trying so hard not to like him? And the next minute you're sucking face with the man?

"I know you're having a hard time with this Randy and I'm trying not to push anything on you. I'll back off this afternoon now that you're comfortable and set up. I did sneak a urinal from the hospital and it's next to you so if you gotta go, go for it Pal." We both chuckled when I looked over the side of the chair and I noticed it for the first time since I had been sitting there. Before I could say anything more he continued.

"Look don't worry about chewing my head off and blowing off steam. Every now and then Rand just every now and then you're going to need to. Sitting and lying around is going to get old fast especially getting to know you. I can tell its going to eat you up fast this just sitting around. So if you need to snap and chew ass sometimes don't stop, let it out of your system otherwise you're going to go crazy real quick. I hope that helps you some knowing it's okay to scream and yell at me if you want just to get it out, I'll listen Rand." What could I say to that no thanks I'll just keep bottled up Den?

"Thanks I appreciate it I don't know how good I'll be at letting it out. But I'll try and keep in mind and not let it build up. I think the whole transfer thing from the hospital to here took more out of me than I care to admit. You know how us guys are, nothing is suppose to phase us really. So I wasn't letting the whole transfer thing phase me because you were handling it right?" I looked at him and smiled trying to say that I was letting him take control this morning. Of doing what he had set out to do and that was get me from point A to point B safely and without a lot of trouble from me. Which I had just given him anyway. His eyes seemed to sparkle just a little more than usual at that moment when he looked at me and answered.

"You were quite cooperative today I must admit. You didn't say one word or put up any resistance the entire process Well except maybe for a momentary slip of that drug induced tongue slip......lets call it that for now." He looked at me with his head at an angle slightly gosh he looked sexy just then.

"That's what I thought it was to Den....the drugs in me. But that wasn't it and I can't say that. I was just being my usual hardheaded self lets be honest. And you know it but I appreciate the fact that you at least attempted to sugar coat it for me that was nice of you. But please don't......when I screw up........please call me on it........I might not like it........but I'll appreciate the honesty in the long run. Know what I mean Stretch? Den leaned back and let out his contagious laugh and I of course laughed along with him.

"Why are you calling me Stretch?"

"Have you really looked at how tall you are? Just how tall are you Den?"

"I knew you'd ask me sooner or later the question usually does come up. Okay well I am the tallest in the family first of all so don't ask about the rest of them but I'm six foot six. And as for my weight you little runt I weigh two hundred and seventy-five pounds now and I don't want to hear one word out of your mouth about my weight buster." I looked at him like he had a three heads because he certainly didn't have a weight issue in my mind he was the perfect weight as far as I was concerned. He was built solid from working in his construction company. He didn't have an ounce of fat on him that I could see. He looked like he was in his late twenties from always being on the move. No Den had nothing to worry about in the looks department as far as I was concerned.

"Den you certainly don't have any weight issues in my mind who says you have weight issues?" He just looked down at the floor and didn't say anything or look at even me. I decided it was best if I left the subject alone for now.

"I think you look great the way you are if I were you I wouldn't change a thing about Den. Unlike me who could stand to tire to the trunk of the car." For emphasis I grabbed my small stomach because it wasn't that big but I did have about five maybe ten pounds I could spare to lose and I tried to show him. He started laughing. I felt better and at least felt like whatever his weight issues were we were away from the subject for now.

"Yeah well I like a little meat on a man so don't be losing it all away Rand. You'll go and get a hot bod on me and then some other guy will come along. And he'll want to take you away before I even get a crack get to even know you. Now I have to go and strip you bed and make it up for you. So tonight when we get you tucked into bed you have clean sheets and you'll feel better that way. At least I always did when I was sick or hurt. So you sit, watch the tube and do whatever you want I've got you all set with the laptop and everything. You sure you're not hungry, or you want something to drink before I do this?"

I looked around one more time just to make sure and I was. Den really had thought of everything for me. It amazed me to see how much he had done in the time he had before I came home from the hospital. And how he had set it all up with my comfort in mind. I mean for a guy that didn't really know me until the day of the accident, everything I could possibly need as far as being a writer was at my fingertips. Not that I needed it because of having my laptop but he even put a dictionary and a Thesaurus for me to use. Granted they were mine he did find them in my office on the bookshelves. But I hadn't used them in so many years I couldn't tell you when the last time was. Pads of paper, pencils, pens. How does he know I don't do everything on the computer? He couldn't. But there these things were, what lucky guesses? David helping him guess? Another block crumbles away, holy shit it was only day one this wasn't going the way I wanted it to, this wasn't good at all not at all. All right it wasn't really a whole block but still it had a lot of cracks in it.

"I'm good Den go....go on and when you're done with the bed why don't you relax for a while sit and rest please." I really meant it this time. I did want him to rest while he was here to, not just take care of me.

"I was thinking of taking a shower and maybe sitting and watching some television in my room. I'll come down after I'm down my shower and check on you to make sure you're okay. I know you're going to go to have a fit about this but I got a baby monitor. It's on the floor so I can hear you wherever I go since I carry the receiver with me wherever I go. I thought it was easier that way." I just laughed when he said it. But he was right I was having a fit a fricking baby monitor seriously! I just wasn't going to show it or say a word about it. He's just worried about me.

"What ever you say Nurse Den."

"Don't be a smart ass either." Before I could think of anything fresh or be a smart ass as he put it he bent down and kissed me. Which I was totally unprepared for and which I didn't mind either. He held my chin with his right hand and kept my face firmly in place. There was no question in me not moving. His lips touched mine and they felt hot and moist I swear and I just couldn't stop nor did I want him to. His grip might have been firm but there was a gentleness to it that told me he cared if I'd let him in. That was the million dollar problem. And at the moment I just couldn't turn him away his touch, or his kiss, he wanted entrance, inside me and I let him in. I guess I gave him what he wanted. For someone who was shy with other guys he certainly knew what he wanted with me and wasn't afraid to show. His tongue was very hot and demanding he probed every inch of my cavity it felt like. He stood up and ran his fingers through my hair. It felt so amazing to me I don't know why. Like no one had ever done that to me before. His hand was so big when he ran it through my hair it covered my scalp entirely I felt it's warmth and somehow it gave me some comfort. I'm not sure what he had done to me but I felt like I wanted more of it that was certain. Whatever it was.

He might be shy on the outside and have a hard time expressing himself but alone together. That man is another story one I need to hear about perhaps. Chip.

"All right Rand rest while I go do this I'll be back after that. Put the recliner back while I'm doing everything and get some rest it won't hurt you at all, and don't be so hardheaded about it either.......just do it for me please. Look at it this way sleeping will make your recovery time seem to go by faster. Oh yea, where do I find sheets to remake your bed with it was the only thing I couldn't find otherwise the bed would have been remade already." I had to chuckle a little.

"Oh yea so that's why it hasn't been stripped and remade already....huh? Now it makes sense why you have to do it now. Yea, actually I use the closet in the empty office for linens for now I do have to change that it's just that it's closer than the actual hall linen closet to my room."

"You're right it is now that you mention it. I never would have looked in there for sheets though. No wonder I couldn't find them when I went looking for them." I had to laugh I could imagine him looking in the hall closet which I only had the one small one. And then in the bathroom for sheets and not finding any. I could only chuckle. I had other things in there that I used as storage cabinets instead it was just easier for me. Hey I lived alone you do things a little differently by yourself. Right?

"All right laugh all you want but I'm going to get things done and you do as I said buster rest and I mean it Rand rest. I'll take my time so you'll have some time for some peace before I come back. So lower the volume and just relax okay?" Den looked down at Randy and brushed the hair back from his forehead and gently pushed his head back to the cushion of the chair and he leaned down and pulled the lever of the Lazy-boy. Randy went to protest but Den put his hand up to his mouth and Randy fell silent quickly. Den handed him the remote and turned the volume to where he could still hear it.

"Do as I say and I'll be back in a little bit. I'll be listening and I hope to hear a lower volume on the television and a slight snoring from the chair."

"I make no promises but you might get your wish Nurse Den."

"Great that's all I ask then." Den walked out of the room and I positioned myself in the chair a little more comfortably. I lowered the volume on the television a tad more but was still able to hear it. I found one I wasn't interested in so I left that on and put the remote down. Mission accomplished. I laid my head back and closed my eyes for a few minutes to get comfortable that's all I remember. The next thing I knew Den was brushing the hair from my forehead and mumbling something about this being the place to not sleep all night. I came to slowly and wiped the sleep from my eyes it was dark outside already. I really woke up rather quickly then almost in a panic that too much time had passed.

"What time is it for crying out loud? How long did you let me sleep Den? I'm never going to be able to sle.."

"Wow would you slow down Randy? You're acted like a chicken with it's tail feathers on fire and they ain't last time I checked."

"I don't remember falling asleep Den, seriously I put my head down and I was out." He put his hands up and calmly using slowing down motion towards me spoke just as gently.

"I know I made the bed and took a shower and came back down to check on you and you were gone, passed out cold. I sat here and read some of your magazines and found this interesting book."

I hadn't hidden it from anyone I had left it on the coffee table because I had given it to David. It had been a gift it to him because it was the first book I wrote. It was also the first book the publisher's had sent me making it special. So I had signed it and had given it to David as a Christmas present. I wrote a message proclaiming that when it made the New York's number one best seller's list, he'd have the original copy of the first pressed edition signed by the author. We laughed and I told him that and five cents would furnish his retirement in the years to come. He had told me that list or no list it was already a best seller to him. That his retirement would be complete because I would always be part of it no matter what.

"Well at least you know who I am besides Randy McKnight. Den I just ask you to please never tell anyone my pen name I really don't want anyone to know that I want my privacy. People are funny about writer's or those that are well kind of famous, even though I don't consider myself well known or famous."

"Rand I would never betray your trust or tell anyone your name. Not because you just asked me but because its your privacy and you're entitled to that Randy. If you decided to tell the world that's for you and you alone to say anything....not me. And no I wouldn't tell my family either. But IF the occasion ever arose that they were invited here. I would recommend that you would hind any of your books in places that they wouldn't just happen to see them. Not that they would go looking, but they would look at the bookshelves you have and what's on them. They are all very avid readers and your bookshelves hold many interesting titles Rand." I was impressed with what he had said about my books I had taken great pride in collecting some of the books I had. Some where classics and you could expect to find them in just about any library or bookcase. But some were diverse and certainly could bring up many arguments on their contents. Ranging from politics and science and modern medicine practices versus more unconventional methods being used in the world today. Yet they seem to work for some reason unknown to science.

"I didn't think you would Den but I just want to make sure that point is clear I do value that privacy you're right, very much so. I don't want it infringed upon. How would you like your life opened up like a book?"

"I wouldn't at all."

"That's what would happen if people knew who I really was."

"Because of what you write in this book?"

"Not so much in that book but in other books I've written there are some things that some people have considered controversial as you can well imagine."

"Let me guess you combine your journalism with story telling to talk about gay rights and other controversial subjects. So there are things of that nature in your books that might shall we say get people pissed off or are delighted you speak your mind. Sound about right or am I totally wrong and I have no idea at all what I'm talking about here?"

"Nope your right on the bulls eye Stretch."

"Listen mister about this Stretch bullshit, this is going to come to an end real quick or else!"

"Or else what Den? What are you going to do? Beat me up? Really? I don't think Riley would like it very much and even though he's smaller than you he has lot's of resource's in the right places. He knows all about you by now believe me and I mean everything Dennis Daniels. There wouldn't be a place in the world you could hide if you ever hurt me in any way just so you know that." I looked at him and he started laughing. Den smiled at Randy he was glad that Randy was relaxing with him and letting his barrier down some.

"Shit. I guess you're telling me he's a cop or something like that."

"Yea, something would be the answer."

"Riley works for the FBI and is involved with the forensics unit specifically. Like not as in the lab working but as in running it way up high, kind of running it. He's a super smart type guy with a ton of connections. I'm not even sure of his title anymore. He makes Sherlock Holmes looks stupid I swear. You lost something you have a problem of some kind, talk to Riley, he'll find the answer I swear to God Den he will."

"Somehow I don't doubt you Randy and we'll leave it at that.

"I'll have to think of some other form of unusual form of torture that won't leave any marks or anything. You know mind games."

"So that's how it's going to be."

"No that's not how it's going to be Rand."

"It's going to be about dinner time right now."

Wow! Talk about changing the fucking subject in the middle of things!"

"Works every time." The two of them both laughed with one another.

"All right you win only because Mr. Asshole refused lunch and now he's rather hungry and not ashamed to admit it. So what are the options at the moment Nurse Den?"

"If you don't cut the Nurse Den crap out you'll be getting soft boiled eggs with cold mush and water. That's what the option will be Mr. McKnight."

"Oh....okay in that case....um what would you like to throw at me? I'll happily catch with my one good arm as long as you throw slowly?" Randy smiled slyly at Den and Den shook his head back and forth for a few times.

"You're terribly incorrigible you are really Rand you are. You know how the saying goes. It's usually a good idea to engage brain before opening mouth."

"Yea well to know me is to love me!" Oh god sometimes I'm to gay for my own good. Because being gay means being a little on the dramatic side sometimes. I'm not that way usually but sometimes the occasions calls for it I thought this one did, I just should have used a different line. What was I thinking? I know, I wasn't. Den looked directly at me with those sparkling eyes of his. And of course I couldn't look away no I just couldn't.

"I'm beginning to understand what you mean by that Mr. McKnight, very much so." Oh boy.....I'm in trouble so much trouble with this one.

"Now as for our dinner and what to eat I think since you live in the middle of God's country and they don't deliver in that section it seems. I know I checked."

"Yea I'm sorry you can't pick up the phone and get pizza sent here even if you know someone." We both started laughing.

"It just so happens that I was a little busy while you were sleeping and I made up some dough and we are going to have pizza. You didn't have tomato paste so I used two tomato's and cut them up. And then with a little of this and a little of that we'll have a pizza for tonight's dinner. I'm letting the dough rise one more time, before I stick it in the oven and let it cook. How do you like your crust, crispy and crunchy, or soft and kind of doughy, what's your desire sir?"

"I'm impressed where did you learn how to cook like this Den?"

"First it's called self preservation and fighting off starvation. Second it's a great way to spend time bonding with the boys. They like eating and playing in the kitchen with their Dad when all together. I use the time as a means to reconnect with them since we see so little of each other during the year. It's meal prep time and then dinner together. We get to talk about their lives and mine and just everything in general." I could tell that Den was getting emotional talking about all this which I could understand. It was drawing near time that they would be coming.

"How do you like yours done Den?"

"Crisp and crunchy just like my Mike and Nate do."

"Well then it's decided all around C&C it is!" We both laughed. "I'll put it in the oven in about twenty-five minutes and it won't take long once I put that in. Maybe twelve or fifteen minutes. You have a nice oven. Did you have it installed or did it come with the house. It's a Blodgett and they aren't cheap it's a good stove and oven set up you have in there."

"No we didn't buy it. It came with the house but it was one of the things that both of us fell in love with especially because it was gas. David went mental over it, he was the chef between the two of us. He was the one that loved to cook. I slowly learned and got better at it, but David, he just kind of threw things together and they came out amazing all the time. I don't know how he did it half the time I swear. But every time he'd start with a few things and before he was done, he'd have this fantastic meal for the two of us."

"I think some people are just born with a gift of being able to throw things together and having them come out just right. My mother was like that, my father on the other hand couldn't cook worth shit. I don't think he could have boiled water if he had wanted to." We both started giggling and were soon laughing hardily with one another.

"Stop...stop please Den...my arm..." Randy clutched at his left arm and his laughter stopped almost immediately. Den quickly followed him and could see the white in his face as the pain racked his body.

"When was your last pain pill Randy, do you remember the time?" Randy held onto his arm and just held on for a few seconds without saying anything and slowly his vision came back and he opened his eyes and looked at Den.

"It must have been before lunch.....would have been Den or even.........no right before we left the hospital. I remember now the nurse said take one so by the time I got home I'd be okay. So right before we left the hospital. That was the last time I've had anything."

"Let me check the bottle but I'm sure you can have one but I'm thinking you can have two by now. I'll double check bud and be right back for you with that and something fresh to drink. Since you haven't had anything fresh before you feel asleep." Den took off like a rocket for the kitchen which wasn't but maybe twenty feet or twenty-five away. However when you're in pain two feet seems like fifty. Den was back in a heat-beat and I was grateful.

"The bottle says take one or two as needed for pain. I brought two for you."

"I'll just take one for now and see how it goes."

"I said I brought two for you."

"I said I'll take one for now and see how it goes." Why was I fighting with him when I was obviously in fucking pain? Because I'm Mr. Hardhead.

"Just take one then and suffer longer than you have to then dip-shit have it your way. I'll be right back I'm gonna stick the pizza in the oven. Then I'll put this other pill back in the bottle, if you decide later you want it just let me know and I'll get it for you." He handed me the pill and the glass of water that he had brought with him and then returned to the kitchen. With the volume still down on the television I heard him close the oven door. He was gone about five minutes before he returned.

"Considering your condition I'm not sure which you'd prefer sitting here or eating at the table? I'll be back in a few I just want to keep an eye on the pizza I don't want to burn it since I'm not use to your oven. Just talk into the box in a normal voice I can hear you just fine believe me." He turned and left the room. To say he was curt would be putting it nicely. Well fuck me, yep I certainly deserved that attitude he just gave me. Why oh why do I do this to him what in the fuck is the matter with me? A few moments passed in silence before I spoke to him.

"How long before the pizza is going to have to come out?"

"Just a few more minutes and it should be done. You decide where you want to eat yet?"

"No."

"Ok."

"Are you sure you aren't out of your fucking mind wanting to stay here and help me? You know I might be crazy too? And on top of those two things again I find myself in that position of having to apologize to you again for being Mr. Personality himself once more. Oh and as usual without due warning of any kind. I hope you can forgive a crazy fucking asshole." What was it with me lately and giving him shit? I was trying to keep the bricks cemented.

"Only because you're charming in between when you tell me how sorry you are. I'd kiss you if I was in the room with you right now but I not. So you'll have to wait until I take the pizza out of the oven and can come out there."

"You still want to kiss me even after how I treated you again are you some kind of nut that likes punishment?" This would tell me how crazy he really was.

"Can you wait a few seconds I'm almost out there, the pizza is being cut up right now as we speak. Just give me two more seconds and I'll be finished with this. Okay coming now."

The next thing I knew he was in the room with both hands holding my head while he was kissing. He moved so quickly I hardly had time to realize that he was even in the room. A gentleness, and kindness came through as he kept that hold one me and I simply melted into his arms. I didn't want this. I so did not want this. So why was I just letting it happen and not stopping him? Because I'm weak and he's so so good at kissing dammit.

It stopped at some point I just don't know when or how long it lasted I don't remember I can't say for sure. Yes that's exactly what it was like when he kissed me and held me like that. I won't lie if I did I'd be lying to myself as well. Den backed up a little and looked at me directly in the eyes. He spoke softly to me and his voice was almost hypnotic in tone. the one thing I wanted to hear was him talking to me a lot more at the moment.

"Randy you've been through a really rough time and it's going to take time for you to get better." He stopped and took hold of both my hands and kissed them gently as he continued to talking to me.

"Its not going to be a easy ride along the way and you're not always going to smiling all the time. I know today has been especially hard on you with just getting here. It's going to take you at least a week or so to really accept me being here and helping you. It's not easy Randy, you've been alone for the past three years and to adjust to an instant roommate isn't easy. If I was in your shoes I think I would be climbing the walls about now. I think we might just get to know each other that much more and be surprised at what we find."

He did it again and went and surprised me by what he could spew from his mouth, and went and made me shut mine. All he had to said was merely common sense, but he said it so nicely and made me feel like I was once again Prince of Assholes. Not only that but also his Royal Majesty Mr. Rubber Nuts for how I acted over the damn pills. The only thing he was doing was thinking of how much pain I was in at that moment. So he brought two pills like the bottle had said to do when needed. Again he was thinking about me and my needs first. Dammit why do I hate when he was right? Just because he was right and I knew he was right for no other reason than that. He was so damn nice, David was too damn nice in the beginning, and that was when I just broke down and cried. Racking sobs of tears broke from me, and I couldn't stop them, the harder I tried the worse it seem to be.

Den didn't come near me at first but slowly he walked up to me and then he sat on the arm of the recliner. As best as he could he held me onto and just let me cry myself out. He handed me the hand towel he had from the kitchen to dry my face, and then the Kleenex box so that I could blow my nose finally. I used the hand towel to dry my face one last time. Den brushed my forehead to take the hair away from my eyes I guess. I wasn't even sure why at that point why he did it I thought for sure I must have looked like shit and wondered why he was bothering.

"I'm sorry if that had in any way reminded you of David, Randy. I don't mean to but it seams that I keep stirring up memories of him with everything I do with you. And I'm afraid that no matter what happens I'll lose the chance of seeing you after this. Because you'll never want to see me again once I leave here from helping you. You'll hate me by the time I leave here." That was the last thing I could do was hate him after all he had done that was impossible to do in the first place with someone like me. He might be driving me a little crazy but I couldn't hate him no matter what. And after this latest revelation that I just had I had to make sure he understood that I wasn't going to hate him under any circumstances. Question was, how? How was I going to convince him that I wouldn't throw him out the door the minute this was all done with besides just telling him it wouldn't end. First I put my one good arm around him and held him as tight as I could, I still had to look up at him because he was sitting up higher than me because he was on the arm of the chair.

"Listen to me Mr. Dennis Daniels." I knew using that name that I would have his undivided attention and make him listen to me. "You have been so kind....only one other person in my life ev....has been this nice to me." I had to stop and take a deep breath. Den looked at me and put his fingertips on my lips.

"Now we've wasted enough time and you've still not answered my question as to where you'd care to eat sir, the chair here or the chair in the dining room?" I couldn't help but laughed.

"I think I would like to try the dining room Den, a different view would be nice for a change and trying to move around isn't going to hurt me either."

"I'll help you stand and you can lean on me to walk............yep that's it put your arm over my shoulder's and we'll make it. Hey, that's good Pal take it slow and easy."

"YEAH! Easy for you to say......hum.....it's a little..... bit of a struggle for me still buddy."

"You're doing just fine Rand, just fine, just keep going easy you don't have to rush it isn't a race to get anywhere. You want to stop at the bathroom on the way or on the way back?"

"On the way back I think I'll be okay till then."

"Okay no big deal either way just let me know when you're ready and I'll help ya, you're definitely going to need it in that bathroom of yours." He chuckled a little and I was thinking as to what he was thinking was wrong with my bathroom. But with the cast on my leg and just the way the bathroom is constructed between the toilet and the tub he was right. I might have a problem but I'd have to wait and see when I actually sat down for the first time. Oh lord help me if I couldn't sit there. Thank goodness I only had to pee this time but there was bound to be a next time sooner or later and I knew it. Maybe I could just die now. That was another thing I had begun to wonder about just how was I going to take a shower or a bath. Yea I couldn't see me doing that by myself either. Okay, no shower that was out. Oh God it was just getting worse and worse by the minute. I would never survive being able to stand in front of him and be naked without having a hard-on, there would be no way. I'd be hard the whole time how was I going to explain that to him. I could see it now....Oh don't mind that thing Den it has a mind of it's own.... oh no really it's nothing I really didn't even notice it........funny you should mention that. I am so fucked......I'll have to get naked in front of him and he'll still be dressed this is so not fair.

"You're as stiff as a board right now Rand stop it, would you please relax for me you're not making this easy." Den stopped walking as he spoke. "Take a deep breath and relax for a few seconds, would you please you're making this difficult on yourself and it doesn't half to be." He was right I was stiff as a board just thinking about being naked in front of him. It was just making me tense all over for some reason. If you had to be that situation in front of him you'd be shitting bricks too. Talk about being self-conscious about yourself, stand next to Den with a body like mine, you'd instantly become very body conscious all of a sudden yourself. I was shorter and a little heavier but definitely wasn't built anything like him. Of course I couldn't voice that out loud to him. I'd look like a little kid in junior high school for crying out loud. Oh that would look so mature at our ages.

"Whatever it is you're thinking about spill it Randy." I must have looked like a deer with his eyes caught in the head lights I'm sure at that particular moment. Because he just kept looking at me as if waiting for an explanation. Of course the next word backed that up. "Well?"

"Well what?" As if I didn't know what he was talking about. But hey playing stupid could always buy me time I thought.

"Okay have it your way, play dumb if you want, you don't have to tell me if you don't want to, but something is bothering you and it's obvious as the say as the nose on your face. Or maybe in your case as the dick between your legs." I couldn't move or say anything. What the fuck? Is he a fucking mind reader now? It was my turn to turn red as a ripened tomato ready to fall off the vine. All he could do was start laughing and all I wanted to do was crawl into a hole and die. Really? Nose on my face? And then dick between my legs? I mean he couldn't have just pulled another comparison to use at that exact moment? Nooooo....of course not it just had to be that particular fucking one, right?

"If you say one more word I swear I'll shove this cast so far up your ass Den I swear I will. Don't even say one more word if you know what's good for you Mr. Daniels." I tried to give him a stern look and to get him to know that I was trying to be serious with him. Yeah sure and that was working real well.

"What are you looking at me like that for? Are you ready to keep going or you contemplating taking a shit right here?" His smile made me smile but I just I couldn't help myself. Like his laugh it was contagious at that moment and I just had to go along with him. Then I just couldn't help myself and lost it and started laughing instead. How could I be serious when he's being a comedian all of sudden? No such luck.

"Would you just get me to the table please before I fall on the floor laughing and then we'll really have a problem? Then you'll have to pick me up off the floor to get me to the table."

"As you wish sir." He more or less put his arm around me and lifted me just enough that I wasn't putting too much weight on my leg and guided me to the dining room table. He had to do a little adjusting to make it work but I was able to sit down and Den brought the pizza to the table.

"This is good Den really it is. I'm impressed for a guy that's a carpenter, you amaze me with your hidden talent. I'm beginning to wonder what else you can cook besides pizza?"

"There's a few things I like playing in the kitchen it's relaxing to me so I don't mind doing it. I can get by don't worry you won't starve while I'm here taking care of you Randy." It didn't take us long and we had the pizza devoured.

"When exactly are the boys coming by the way you haven't told me that Den?"

"They'll be here tomorrow afternoon." I could see the look of worry spread across his face very quickly.

"What's the problem?"

"I'm just hoping that you won't mind them being here for the time that they're here Randy. I mean me is one thing. But them is another all together and they're twelve years old I'm thinking maybe I should keep them with one of my brother's or my parents. Maybe just take off during the day to see them, it might be a better idea. You don't need the noise or them underfoot." I could tell this was really eating him up and was second guessing his plans. I didn't want that to happen. I didn't want to see him going back and forth that would be crazy. And he'd lose a lot of time spent seeing his boys.

"Den you've been so good to me and have helped me so much I don't want to take what little time away from you that you have. This is what I was afraid of in the beginning, it's why I didn't want you doing this in the first place. Especially knowing that they were coming during this time period. Why don't we arrange for helpers to come in while the boys are here and when they go home you can come back and help me?" I thought he was going to go through the roof when I finished talking. If there was a launch button all I would have had to do was push it and he would have gone into orbit; I swear.

"NO WAY! I am not leaving you in the hands of people you don't know and don't give a shit Rand, no fucking way! Do you hear me?" Get it through your hard head!" What could I say to that, gee thanks but no thanks Den. But I wasn't sure how to change his mind or come up with a better idea at the moment either.

"You really want someone coming in and giving you a bath you don't know? Some stranger? You're having a problem with me coming in and doing in right now."

Christ on a cracker how did he even know that I was having that problem? I had to take a bath to and he was right about that it was going to be one thing with him helping me but what about a stranger helping me that was a another story all by itself. Maybe it would be easier with a stranger. What the fuck was I going to do? Who would I let help me. Riley? Oh yea I could see him going along with that plan and me being gay. It was one thing that he accepted me as I was but him giving a gay guy a bath that was a whole new ball game for him and I didn't see it happening anytime soon. I just looked at Den.

"No I don't to be honest with you Den. Bring them here so that they're here with you." He looked at me like I had grown three heads all of a sudden.

"Maybe it's the drugs talking are you nuts? How many of those have you taken lately? Do you realize what twelve year old twins are like by any chance?" Of course I had no idea I've never been around any twins in my life let alone twelve year boys.

"Think atomic twister only contained in a house, only times two." I couldn't help but laugh at his description.

"Oh come on now I'm sure you're making it sound worse than they is. I'll bet they'll behave better than you're giving them credit for. I always hear parents say about how bad their kids are and then they leave them some place. When they pick them up the people say how well behaved they were and how good they were. The parents look at them and ask them if they are talking about the same child." I know my mother use to say it all the time to parents about my and my brother and sister. But we always behaved when we were in someone's home that wasn't ours it was the way we were brought up. I'm sure you're children are no different Den."

"Okay we'll see, I'm just hoping that once they get here it wasn't a mistake. But if at any time you want them out of here, you just say the word and I'll ship them off to one of my brothers houses. I'll make time to see them and come back to see you and make sure you're taken care of, I'm not leaving you to strangers Rand. It's not going to happen I don't care what I have to do to make that sure that happens. Are we clear on this point?" He just gave me this look and I knew he meant it, at least I thought by the look on his face he did.

"Yeah, we're clear on that Den." I couldn't help but feel good inside that he really cared that much about making sure I was going to be okay. No matter what it took from him to make sure of that. Another fucking brick was slowly crumbling away and it was only the beginning of his stay to take care of me. This wasn't good it wasn't good at all for me. I looked at him and smiled, he just smiled back. The rest of the evening went by pretty quietly and before long it was time for bed.

"How do you sleep when you're in bed Randy? Want to you need me to get for you?"

"Nothing, just help get me to the bathroom first so I can go first and then to my room, I sleep naked." It was out of my mouth before I even realized it. So now it was show and tell time for him. Not me though I didn't get to see him, oh no this just wasn't fair at all. I saw the corners of his mouth start to curl upward.

"What are you smiling about? What you get to see me naked now? You think it's funny don't you? Fine I'll ruin your fun and sleep in my underwear just so you don't get to have any fun so there."

"Fine, have it your way, sleep uncomfortable and I'll sleep naked and be comfortable unlike you." He leaned back in the sofa and started laughing. That was so not fair. He got up and proceeded to help me get up from the chair and assisted me to the bathroom. At least he let me have my privacy where I could stand and pee. He came back in and helped me get to the sink and stayed with me while I brushed my teeth and finished getting ready for bed. Den got me to the bedroom and onto the bed and proceeded to help me undress with what little clothing I had on. Between the cast on one leg and the dislocated arm there wasn't much on to begin with. My daily dress pretty much consisted of sweats and either a sweater and t-shirt or no sweater and underwear and oh yeah socks. With the cast on my daily selection was limited. Before we got down to the nitty gritty he stopped and looked me in the eyes.

"Just so you don't feel uncomfortable we'll level the playing field." I had no idea what he was talking about as I sat there on the edge of the bed. Before I could say anything he took off his shirt and then in one swift motion dropped his pants and underpants to the floor, leaving him standing there in just his socks. To say I wasn't shocked would be a lie. I was speechless for a moment. I finally stopped looking below his waist and looked up at him he had a big shit eating grin on his face.

"Still want to want to sleep naked or not?" I stood there red faced I'm sure. At least I felt it.

"Um......yeah....sure." Was all I could say for a moment. "You didn't have to go to extreme's you know." Although inside I was grinning a mile wide. God he was beautiful with no clothes on. From the tip of his head all the way to his sock covered feet he was gorgeous. I so wanted to drink up the sight of his magnificent body some more but dared not for the fear of starring at him for too long.

"I figured it would make it easier for you and make you feel a little more comfortable. I know if I was in your shoes I'd feel uncomfortable being stripped by another guy who has the hots for you." Oh god he said it, he has the hots for me, please don't let me bone up now. I reached down and hooked my thumbs in my underwear to get them started but that got me nowhere I couldn't lift myself up.

"Stop it Rand you're going to hurt yourself that way just lay down on the bed and I'll get them off of you." In other circumstances I would have loved to hear that but this was different. I did as he said and laid down with his help getting my bad leg up on the bed. Using my good leg I lifted my butt off the bed and he pulled my under wear off. I laid there with my eyes still closed unsure of what to say or what to do Den was the first man since Davids death to see me naked. The circumstances didn't change anything it was still unnerving to me. The next thing I felt were the covers being pulled up over me and him sitting down on the bed right next to me on my right side.

"Are you gonna breathe or what?" I finally let out a breath of air and sighed. I was okay again.

"I don't know why I was feeling so damned uncomfortable about the whole thing Den. I guess because it was the first time being naked in front of another man since Davids...and then you and I......just you know we...""

"Because of what has been going on between us. I think you were just feeling a little uncomfortable getting naked in front of me. So I figured if I would get naked to, it would just make it fair to you and then that would end the awkwardness." He leaned down and kissed me. Since he was naked there was nothing was left to the imagination and I knew for certain we were both in the same condition when he stood up.

"Yeah, you do this to me. But now is not the time. We can both take matters into our own hands tonight; just the way it has to be. Ill leave a hand towel on the night stand for you just in case you need it." Den got a towel and put it on the night stand and chuckled as he walked to the door. "At least we both know where we stand right now. Good night Randy if you need me just call me I've got the call monitor with me and I'm a light sleeper have been ever since the boys were born. You won't have to scream."

"Good night Stretch and thanks for leveling the playing field I know you didn't have to do that but it did make me feel a lot better to be honest with you."

"I knew it was bothering you but you just couldn't say it." He looked at me and grinned. Damn he was getting to know me all to well. He flipped the switch off and I heard him walk to his bedroom. Whether he took things in hand I don't know but I sure as hell did. I had to after the way he kissed me and left me hard as stone. I don't know what time it was but the searing pain hit me like a bolt of fucking lightening. I didn't call him because I just heard myself screaming out. The next thing I knew he was standing next to me with the bottle of pills and a glass of water in his hand.

"How'd you know what I needed?"

"I figured it was either pain or a nightmare and if it was a nightmare you'd be okay if it was the pain you would need these right now."

"I'll take two this time I won't be an ass." He help me sit up and gave me the water and pills. Once I swallowed them I laid back down and he came back in the room with a towel and warm face cloth to wipe my forehead. I guess I was a little damp from sweating, the pain was pretty bad right now.

"You don't have to stay Den the pills will work soon and I'll be okay."

"I don't have to do anything I don't want to. But I'll feel better sitting here with you until the pills kick in and that stressed look in your face goes away. How about I just sit here and hold your hand until then?"

"Naked?"

"I'll be right back." He was back in about ten seconds with a long shirt on that covered him well enough that I didn't have to sit there and lust after him; which I did appreciate.

"Thanks I don't know if I could have just laid here and not looked at you naked for that long." He smiled and let out a small chuckle. He took my good hand back in his for a few minutes and we just sat and talked while he waited for the pills to kick in. Every now and then he'd let go and wipe the sweat from my forehead and wipe my hair back from my forehead I don't know why it's not like it was falling back on to get in the way I was laying there. I think he just like running his fingers through my hair for some reason. Besides it felt good when he did it and I liked it. Before to long the pills did kick in and my body began to relax again but it took some more time before the pain actually began to subside. I should have thought to take them before bed time tomorrow night I would remember to take them. So we wouldn't have a repeat performance again.

"You feeling better now Rand?"

"Yeah they are starting to kick in more and the pain isn't as bad, why don't you go back to bed Den? I'm okay and I know the way I feel now it won't take much longer before I fall back to sleep. Thanks for being here so quick with everything I mean it."

"It's why I'm here pal, what would you have done if no one was here? This is one of the reasons why I wanted to move in with you and be here for you. You can't be left alone Rand I'm afraid to leave alone."

I was puzzled by his statement what was he afraid of? We had just met. He couldn't possibly have feelings for me like that in the short time since we have been together; could he? Was I not seeing something, was I overlooking something because of the walls I had up? Had I started something and didn't realize how much it was affecting him? Fuck. He leaned down and kissed me just like before. I guess I was too much in thought to pop a bone this time. My heart was going out to him and what I might have started so innocently at the hospital with Den. I meant it as innocent to try and help him but had I gone to far? That was the major question in my mind when I fell asleep. I don't remember him leaving the room that night. I didn't realize he sat there for a few hours watching me sleep making sure I was okay and that I didn't wake up in pain again that night.

I called him in the morning when I woke up and of course I had major morning wood. Did it matter? Not anymore, the pretense and any embarrassment were now past us. He was there within a few seconds still waking up as he entered the room dressed in the shirt he was wearing when he went to bed last night.

"Need to hit the head to you?"

"You could say that Den. Why don't you get the urinal and I'll use that because getting up and to the bathroom is something I don't know if I can handle. I can stand by the bed better I think if you get me up once you get back." He headed for the living room to get it and was back in about two seconds flat I swear. He got me standing and left to go the bathroom himself at least leaving me some dignity not that it mattered at this point. I no longer minded being naked in front of him but at least he was giving me my privacy. He came back a few minutes later and got the urinal and went and drained it, shit he wasn't even a nurse and he was doing this for me. Today was the big day the 'atomic twins' were coming as he had put it. I began to wonder if it was really true but discounted it as an over reacting parent. I didn't want to prejudge the boys until they had a chance to show me what they were like themselves.

"So what do you feel like wearing? How about gym shorts and a oversized t-shirt?" I just looked at him.

"I have quite a few pairs and I brought them with me I thought they might fight you with your current state of affairs." He asked me where I might keep my gym shorts and underwear and I told him. And then he went to his room and brought back this very large t-shirt that I thought for sure I was going to disappear in when he put it on.

"Would you like to freshen up and shave before getting dressed Randy?"

"Yeah actually I would. It'll feel good to do it in my own home again." He walked over and put his arm around me and assisted me to the bathroom and got me to the sink.

"You want to just do it here at the sink this morning?"

"Yeah that will be fine. Just get me a facecloth in the closet there and a towel and I can shave and do a quick wash of what's important and if you'll bring the wear for the day and oh yeah my socks are in the top right hand dresser drawer, the white ones will do fine, one will do fine since I don't need the other." He was back in a flash with everything. He stood there facing the shower and talked with me while I washed up. I didn't mind him being there, what hadn't he seen by now? Once I was done with everything he helped me get dressed and we made it to the dining room table. He had already made the coffee and I was ready for it by then.

"What time are the boys getting here?"

"I'm picking them up in Boston at one o'clock so I have to leave here by about eleven-thirty this morning. I have a guy coming in from the company to make sure you get lunch and someone is here just in case you need something Randy. As I said I'm not leaving you alone."

"Den I can handle a few hours. I don't want you worrying like this, really I don't. Just make a sandwich, wrap it up and leave it next to me with something to drink and my pills next to me and I'll be fine. Well that and the urinal in case I have to go. You'll be gone maybe four hours tops and I'll sit on the chair and watch the television and take a nap in all probability and you know it."

"Good then the person that's here watching you can be bored watching the television with you. You guys can take a nap together watching the television isn't that great? Now that's the last I'll hear of this, got it?" He gave me that look that I was beginning to know that meant the conversation was over and arguing with him was pointless and that whoever he had chosen had already known that they were coming to my house to watch me. So that god forbid something went wrong while he was gone.

"All right all right fine have it your way cause lord knows it ain't happening my way!" He leaned over and kissed my forehead.

"Was that so fricking hard now?" I really wanted to smack him upside the head but couldn't his heart was in the right place after all wasn't it?

"I won't answer that on the grounds that it will absolutely incriminate me." He laughed at me and I really wanted to smack him that much more.

"I know that but at least you're being gracious about it and I know how hard that is for you. It makes me want you all that much more you know that right?" I couldn't help but chuckle at him, how could I not?

Oh great what have I done? I can't win no matter what I do. I'm not trying to hurt his feelings I'm just being honest and at least he sees that. Chip, chip, chip. I can just hear it in the back of my head the hammer chipping away at the walls I've built up. This isn't going the way I was thinking it would go and we still have weeks to go. WEEKS! I'm doomed I can see it in the cards and the stars and whatever else you can look into the future with. Whatever you want to call it I might as well throw the cards in and just go with the flow. Only there's one big problem with that scenario. I'm not a go with the flow kind of guy. Am I? NO I'm not. I don't just flow. No fucking flowing is going to happen.

"You're going to be fine Randy, honest you will be. And I'll be back as quickly as I possibly can with the dynamic duo and then you'll be sorry. The peace and tranquility you once knew will be gone and you'll be wanting me gone." I watched the worried look in his face. I was turning around in my thinking at that point and wondering what I could say to calm him now. Now the hammer was back at work. Fucking hammer I'd have to deal with it later, now was not the time.

"Come on get me to the living room and we can talk some more before you have to leave for Boston." He got me to my living room chair. " Now sit on the ottoman and let's talk for a little bit before you go, we have some time." He sat down in front of me. "I want you to stop thinking that I'm going to throw you out because of the boys being here, it's not going to happen Den. I'll admit I've never been around children their age for a long period. But first of all they aren't going to be here twenty-four seven as you've already stated. Second, as their father I can't imagine as much as I've gotten to know you, that you let your children run a muck and rain havoc in your home, never mind someone elses home. So I'm guessing that we're in for some fun and excitement yes, but mayhem and bedlam; somehow I highly doubt it. Parents have a tendency to raise their children the way they were raised, I think your parents did a good job raising you from what I can tell at this point." I hoped I had made some sense and had gotten through to him. At least his body seemed to let go of some of his tension I wasn't sure about his mind.

"You're right Randy, I'm probably making it worse than it is and worrying for nothing. I guess I just want you to like my boys. It's important to me that they....make...no....that's not the right word...I just want you to like them I guess. Or maybe for them........to like you is more like it." He looked up at me like he was searching for something I could see it in his eyes. I couldn't give him what he was looking for, not yet. I just couldn't, it just wasn't in me. I took his hand in mine.

"Den.....I can't give you what you're asking for yet. You know that. I told you that going into this. I'm not saying those initial feelings I had aren't going to change in any way. They already have. But I can't rush anything for you. I've been in a hole for three years, deep in a hole and I'll be the first to admit it. I've made progress in that time and I'm not anywhere near where I was in those first two years. This past year has been a good year for me and I feel like I've come a long way. I even thought to myself in the hospital that perhaps it is time that I allow myself to let someone in my life again. And yes Den it was you I was thinking about. So that's saying a lot for you, you know."

"That's tells me a lot Rand and I'll take that for now. You said from the beginning that you had walls up. I'm not asking for anything more than what you just gave me really. I'm happy you've given me that much right now I am, I can live with that. I really can." It was him that took my good hand in his hands this time and wrapped them up in his, they just seemed so massive compared to mine when he did that. Well he was bigger than me to begin with; he did have quite a few inches on me to start with. His hands seemed to just emphasize that point, at least to me they did.

"I'm glad you can do that Den, I am. Just be patient, I think if you can do that we might have a chance." I wasn't sure about anything at that point about anything in the way of a future with him. Yes I had feelings for him, that didn't mean I was planning a future with him right then. I was just thinking that at that moment in time there was a possibility that perhaps we could at least get to know one another a little better before we ended it. I wasn't saying anything more than that. There would have to be a hell of a lot more brick chipping done before anything like that happened, a hell of a lot more chipping.

"I think I can be very patient when it comes to you Randy take all the time you need.....I'll wait for as long as it takes you whether it's a year or two years I'll wait. And I won't push you I promise you that. But I think you buddy, are worth waiting for." He lifted my hand and kissed it and never losing sight of looking at me directly in the eyes. And all I could see where the flecks of blue that drove me crazy every time I saw them. I couldn't stop looking at his eyes. He opened up my hand and proceeded to kiss the palm of my hand. Until he began to roll up my fingers and kiss them on the outside. He never once stopped looking into my eyes. I'm not sure how long we sat there but the next thing I knew someone was knocking on the door and the silence and the moment we were sharing was broken.

"That will be John Alexander he's the guy that's going to be watching you while I'm gone. Give me a kiss before I go and get him." He leaned in and gave me a quick kiss and then went to answer the door. A tall lanky guy came in and Den introduced us. He had black hair that was wrapped up in a ponytail that had to be halfway down his back. I don't know who did it but the I couldn't help but notice how tightly it was braided. Someone how obviously done a good job that was certain.

"Randy McNight this is John Alexander, John this is Randy." He leaned down and shook my hand.

"Please to meet you Randy. Whatever you need while I'm here don't be afraid to ask I don't mind helping you out one bit." He certainly seemed cheerful enough.

"I'll make your lunch whenever your ready you just let me know. If you don't mind I'm just going to sit at the table and get some paper work done while I'm here it will give me a chance to caught up some, I've been meaning to do it the past couple of days. You just holler the second you need anything."

"No go right ahead I'm all set at the moment and Den will give me my pills before he leaves, I'll be good to go for eating for at least an hour or so. So go ahead and do your paper work without worrying for a little while about me. I'll be fine for now John thank you very much." Den pointed him to the dining room table and he went to work right away I never heard a sound until I did call him for my lunch.

Within about twenty minutes Den left for Boston and I found myself periodically watching the clock, realizing that I was actually waiting for them to get back. I was watching the time tick by slowly. John made me a good sandwich and some fresh coffee to go with it. I found myself getting both anxious and nervous wondering what Den was telling his boys about me. Also envisioning him and what he was telling them about me. No, more like warning them to be on their best behavior while staying in my house. I just knew they were getting the third degree of how they were to behave by a Marine Staff Sargent no less. I couldn't help but smile at the thought I had of him just then. I was going to grill him of his behavior to them when he was back and see what he had to say to me about it. I'd know in an instant if I was right by the look on his face.

Time kept slowly ticking away and three o'clock came and went. I began to get nervous when three-thirty went by and he wasn't back. It was one thing but when four o'clock came and went, but then I began to get really nervous. At four-fifteen I began to get launch into a small panic. Thoughts began to run through my head, the plane was delayed perhaps due to bad weather but why hadn't he called to let me know that? Oh god, maybe they were in an accident. I had his phone number I could call him and just check to make sure. I picked up the phone and started to dial his number. Just as I was about to hit send the door opened and I heard them come in. I left out a deep sigh and put the phone down. I didn't even realize that my hand was shaking.

They walked into the room after taking off their boots and coats and Den looked at me. I knew the minute he saw me he knew I had been worrying.

"I'm sorry I didn't call you Randy but we got stuck in traffic on Route Two I should have called you I'm sorry but we were talking and time slipped away from me . You okay now? I shook my head yes, but I think he knew I was a little shaken by it all by the look on his face.

"Boys this is Mr. McNight I was telling you about the man we are going to take care of, well I'm taking care of. You can help me from time to time while you're here. He was in the car accident that I saw go over the embankment and went to help. Randy this little guy here is Nathan and the other little guy on the other side is Michael. Fortunately they are not exactly identical as they once were since they've got older, so it's a little easier to tell them apart now which I'm very grateful for. When they were younger it was a lot harder for me, and I use to have to put a tag on each one so that I would know who was who." Both laughed and looked up at him.

"Nice to meet you two boys I've heard nothing but good things about both of you from your father. You're more than welcome to play in my home and out in the yard if you like the cold. I know you live in Texas but have you ever seen snow?" Both boys at the same time shook their heads no. "Well then you're going to have to go out and play in it to be able to appreciate it's good and bad points. But I won't tell you what those are you'll have to experience those for yourselves. All I ask is that you try not to hurt yourselves. Your father will kill me if you do I'm sure. I do know that there's a sled in the garage if he can find it for you. I think it's hanging up on the back wall in there at least the last time I remember seeing it. He will have to find a hill close by for you to go sledding on though I'm not sure where there is one but I know it won't be hard to find one close by." Their faces lit up with the thought of going sledding they were at once pulling on Den's sleeves wanting to go.

"Now boys we just got here and I have to let John go home. Then I have to take care of Randy and it's time to get supper ready. Which I know the two of you are getting hungry since you haven't had that much for lunch. So I'm sure if I started cooking in a few minutes you two will be in the kitchen with me in no time, wanting to sample whatever I'm making. And to eat it before it's even finished cooking am I right? The two shook their heads in unison. The looked just like him, no question they were their father's sons. I would guess to say they would grow up to look just like him and probably just as tall by the looks of their frames at their currant age.

"What do you say Randy should we let the boys decide on supper tonight?"

"I think since it's their first night here they should have the honors Den."

"Okay boys you heard him so here's your choice's it's either hamburgers or meatloaf or SOS. Which one would you like since I know you like all three?" They looked at each other without saying a word but I could tell that they were still communicating between themselves. I had never seen it but I had always heard that twins could talk to one another in their own language but I thought they meant verbally not visually but apparently these two could do it.

"Meatloaf with mashed potatoes and gravy and green beans Dad!" They were twins for sure the sentence was said in perfect unison they never missed a syllable, not one. I had to smile. He told them where the potatoes were and to go out and to start cleaning them he'd be out in a second. He came directly over to the ottoman and sat down directly in front of me. Den leaned in and kissed me quickly. I felt like a teenager sneaking a kiss behinds his parents back but this time it was his children, weird.

"I'm sorry I didn't call you I can tell you're upset. I'm sorry you got worried and I didn't tell you and I'm the cause. I should have called you."

"It's okay you lost track of time being with the boys Den. I understand. You haven't seen them in a while. I can certainly understand how it happened."

"It's not an excuse. I told you I'd hurry back and then we got held up and the minute we did I should have called. There's no excuse for not calling it won't happen again I promise you."

"Change of subject Den, did the Drill Sargent give strict orders to his boys to behave or else they'd be thrown in the brig as a form of punishment?" I watched his mouth curl up at one end. Yep he did and I knew it.

"Your awful telling you children that, threatening them with something like that. I knew I should have given you the riot act before you left and told you not to do that, because I knew you were going to do just that. Tell them not to do this and not to do that while staying in my home and that's exactly what you did. Didn't you Den?" I looked at him and he looked back for about three seconds before lowering his gaze at me. Yep guilty as charged. That big shit.

"You should be ashamed of yourself Dennis Daniels and give your children more credit than you do. I can tell by the way they acted coming in that you've done just fine raising those boys even if you haven't had them the whole time. Your influence when you do have them is evident. Yes they are going to make mistakes Den they're twelve for crying out loud. Don't be so hard on them while they're here, let them have fun with you and when it comes time to be a father, then be one. Otherwise enjoy this time together with them. Now go out there and make supper I'm hungry and that meatloaf and everything else that goes with it sounds really good. Now give me one more quick kiss and go be with your boys." Oh shit, chip chip, chip. I heard him as he entered the kitchen and asked them how they were making out with scrubbing the potatoes. I heard more laughing and giggling while supper was being made than anything I began to wonder if supper was actually being made. Sure enough about an hour later Den came to ask if I wanted to eat at the table again.

"I'm more than happy to move from here Den you ready to help me?"

"You know it Bud." He reached down and lifted me up from the chair and got me to the dining room table where the boys were already seated and waiting for me.

"My this certainly looks and smells delicious. Who made what here exactly I know your father couldn't have made all of this by himself?" The two of them lite up like light bulbs at once. Nathan was the first one to speak so I at once knew who was the more dominant of the two.

"I mashed the potatoes and Michael made the green beans and Dad made the meatloaf and the gravy cause we don't know to make gravy yet."

"Nathan not 'cause', it's 'because' we don't know how to make the gravy. Slow down when you talk to people they'll wait to hear what you have to say son don't worry so much." Nathan turned red as a tomato just like his father does.

"I knew what you meant Nathan but your father is right, just relax when you talk to people and everything you say will come out just fine. And the way it should I don't worry I use to be the same way and talk in a hurry. You'll grow out of it don't worry." He stopped being so red and I think it helped him relax a little, he was just like his father. I wondered what Michael would be like. Dinner was indeed another good meal why was I not surprised? The boys were animated but aren't any twelve year old's? I could tell that they definitely fed off one another and were very in tune with each others feelings. It was interesting to watch the two of them interact with one another, at least for me it was. Once dinner was over they both asked to go out in the snow to play. Den got them both dressed the best he could and bundled them up with scarf's and gloves. They were a little large on them but it would at least keep them from getting frost bite.

"No going outside of the yard you two. If I look out and see you outside of the fence you won't be doing any sledding tomorrow. Do I make myself clear?" Both of them shook their heads up and down vigorously in agreement. He opened the door and they took off like rockets on their way to the moon.

"Their good kids Den. They really are I think they'll be fine while their here I don't know what you're worried about."

"Wait Rand they just got here. Why don't I get you back to your chair so your a little more comfortable? I can tell your starting to get uncomfortable right now." He was right I was getting sore sitting there actually. I couldn't sit in the dining room chair that long with to much comfort it did provide a change of scenery but, that was about it. He got me up but before he guided me into the living room I stopped him.

"You know you've been great at stealing kisses and that's nice and all and don't think I don't like it. Right now I could really use a hug and that's something you haven't given me yet, at least not a good one."

"You're absolutely right we actually haven't yet have we? I guess I was more afraid to than anything. I wasn't sure with your arm the way it is,...I just didn't want to hurt you Randy."

"Well just go easy on the left side and go under that arm and I'll tell you if it bothers me okay?"

"Okay you got a deal, I've been wanting to but as I said I wasn't sure how to without hurting you anymore than you already are." He came around to the front of me and as if I was going to break, he reached his right arm under my left arm. And his other arm around my right side and pulled me into him. It just felt so good to me to be completely next to him like this. With his arms around me I was completely engulfed by him, at least that's what it felt like. I felt safe and protected all of a sudden. Like I did when I was with David. CHIP. CHIP. CHIP. Those were some major chips falling away this time. He bent his head down and kissed the top of my head and I liked it, a lot. He did that thing where he ran his fingers through my hair and then he held my head against his upper chest. Because that's where my head fit when we stood next to each other. Again time passed without me knowing how long it was; I was lost in it when it came to him and him kissing me or whatever he did to me.

"Come on and lets get you into your chair I know you need to get settled again. When was the last time you took anything for pain and don't lie to me either." I honestly had to stop and think when it was, I knew it had been a while.

"Why don't you bring me at least one it's not really hurting and maybe I'll take another one before bed. Just to be on the safe side so we don't have a repeat of last night. I don't want to scare the boys their first night here Den."

"Good idea. I'm going to put them in the other bedroom while they're here. Just in case I do have to get up for you so don't worry about that. And they are heavy sleepers it takes an atom bomb to wake them." I watched his smile grow as he spoke of his boys and his eyes seem to twinkle just a little more the more he did talked about them. He got me into my chair and got my pain pill for me. That was followed with him calling the boys and checking to make sure they were okay and were still warm enough. I think they were more annoyed with being taken away from whatever it was they were doing at the time. So I'm glad when he returned and the boys were still outside and having fun, or at least I was assuming they were having fun.

"I was informed that when they were absolutely frozen they would come in and not to bother them until then!" I had to laugh at him I guess he must have thought he was needed at that moment, only to find out that wasn't the case and they were fine without him. But I could understand to some degree since he hadn't seen his sons in some time, I'm sure he was at least expecting them to be more demanding of him at this point. However I think the excitement of the snow and it's newness, was a lot more fun to them than Dad was at the moment. Den just wasn't seeing it that way.

"Hey I see that look on your face don't worry Den, it's just the snow is so new to them it's overwhelming their senses. I don't know kids but think about it and think about being a kid when things were new." Den looked at me with a look I wasn't quite sure of and began to wonder if I should have said anything at all.

"You know for someone who doesn't have kids you're pretty smart. Here I am worried their not really interested in seeing me for some reason, that maybe I said something to them that set them off on the way back here. And maybe they were shutting me out all of a sudden. I know I'm not their friend, I have to be their father first and that's all that matter's but sometimes I feel like I want to be their friend to." I could tell this was bothering him a great deal.

"Come over here and pull up the ottoman and sit down this minute Den." He looked at me for a few seconds and didn't move. "I'm not waiting all night and neither will the boys buster, now move it." Den walked over and pushed the ottoman directly in front of my chair and sat down.

"Go ahead I know you're going to say whatever it is you have to say."

"What would make you say that Den?"

"Because you have that look on your face you get when your thinking, right before you have something to say to me." I had to laugh to myself. Boy he was getting to know me and yet it scared me a little. David use to tell me he could tell when I had something to say to him, because of the look on my face.

"Well only if you promise to listen to what I have to say."

"I don't have much of a choice do I?"

"No."

"Okay, I promise." I leaned in and kissed him first before saying anything. Not even sure why I did it. But he put his hand on the back of my head and just held me for a few seconds. I know how it felt to have him hold me with his hand wrapped around my head. It was like he was just palming a melon, whole in his entire hand. That's what it felt like to me. I had to chuckle to myself. Chip, chip, chip. Dammit! That has got to stop. I slowly pushed him away so I could talk to him.

"You have to stop being so hard on yourself Den, I mean it you really do. Why are you doing this to yourself? You don't have to work so hard to impress me you know. It s not the pride and macho thing I need to see to be impressed by. I like seeing the relaxed be yourself kind of guy. I get by much better with that nice humble help your down on your luck guy I first met. Stop trying so hard Den. I'm liking what I have seen so far really I have and I am impressed I am really. So lets keep it at the pace it's going and maybe it will work out. You just have to relax then Den, you and the boys will be fine here, I'm sure so don't be so uptight over it. Things that will happen, will happen like it or not. So relax for me or you will explode by the time Michael and Nathan leave here." It was me this time that ran my fingers through his hair As I began to run them through his hair I felt his head lean into the pressure of my hand, he closed his eyes in comfort I supposed. I could have sat there just like that but I knew it was getting later by the minute. Other wise I could have sat there with him and just kept doing this.

"Go and get the boys Dad and bring them in, I'm sure by now they are getting colder and really should be coming in. Their really not use to this cold and snow Den. I don't want to see them get frost bite or something. I especially don't want them getting sick their first day here that would ruin their whole vacation."

"You're right Randy I should go and get them and I'm sure they'll protest and swear that they're fine but, I'll be the Dad and bring them in. Thanks for reminding me who I am I guess I need that from time to time, I just forget that's all."

"No, from what little I've seen and from what I've heard you say about them I don't think you need any reminding about your boys. The only reminding I think you need to give yourself, is to not be so hard on yourself all the time when it comes to those two. From what I can see and tell so far you're doing just fine Den and I mean that, I'm not just saying that to make points between us you know that. So relax and we'll have some fun while they're here. Just let the boys be themselves Den, for my sake. I want to get to know them and who they really are, not who you are telling them to behave like, can you do that for me?" He looked at me for a few seconds and kissed me sweetly on the forehead.

"Yeah, you're right as usual. I have to let them be themselves and have fun and they'll be more relaxed as well. I'll be right back buddy with two youngsters in tow who might just be complaining a little." He went and called them in and as he had said they came in under great protest. Their faces were bright red from the cold. Their cheeks as well as their noses were cherry red from the exposure to the cold air. But they were extremely excited by the snow and the mixture of the cold air. They loved the long icicles that hung from the shed and garage and had been using them as spears. They were throwing them into the snow banks, both assured me that they would be more than happy to get rid of all of them. I laughed as I told them I was more than willing to let them take the job, and have as much fun doing it as they could. Their faces lite up pretty well I thought when they heard that. I hoped I had done the right thing in telling them that. Den gave me a nod of approval at least that's what I hoped it was.

"Okay you two boys get your butts in gear and go get yourselves ready for bed. You can say goodnight to Mr. Randy and remember to thank him for letting you stay here for the time being. He's been very nice for opening his home for us to stay here."

"Before you two say anything, I'm the one that should be thanking your Dad for staying here and taking care of me. As far as you two being here I'm delighted that you're here and glad to see you had so much fun outside. So now you can do what you're Dad told you to do and go get ready for bed." As on cue they spoke on unison again.

"Thanks Mr. Randy." With that the two scampered off towards the bedroom. Den looked at me and just smiled.

"I'll be back in a few minutes after I get them settled in. It won't take me that long."

"Take all the time you want to Den, you might want to give them a bath you know. They've been on the road all day traveling remember and then playing outside, they twelve year old's you know. It might feel good to them and also it will help relax in a hot tub of water and help them fall asleep tonight." He just looked at me for a few seconds and shook his head.

"You sure you haven't done this before?" I just shook my head back and forth and smiled and him. Den left the room with a wave of his hand. I stared at the television for a few moments and then tried finding something on that I might actually be interested in watching. I finally settled on a forensics cop show that I liked watching. Hey it's something I liked because I could take notes for future reference in a story I might write you never know where you find information. This type of show was one I always found helpful. What can I say? I was beginning to think that Den had fallen asleep putting Michael and Nathan to bed, but just about that time he walked back into the living room.

"I was just thinking you had fallen asleep with those two."

"I almost did and don't you dare laugh at me." I wanted to but bit my tongue instead in order to save my life.

"Come here and sit down on the floor in front of me and I'll give your shoulder's a light massage. I know you're tired." I don't know what I was thinking. This was not what I should be doing right now. But he did look tired. Between the boys and myself he was running full tilt today. I did feel bad for him. Den pulled up one of the large pillows and sat down with his back against my chair. I even took my left arm out of the sling and used both hands. It hurt a little but it wasn't that bad after all it was only dislocated. I had been at it a few minutes when he finally said something.

"Mmmm....keep that up and I'm going to be asleep right here babe." Did he really just that? Oh god. Chip.

"Yeah well don't or I'll have to slap you up side the head to wake your lazy ass up then."

"Wow, from nice massage to slap upside the head that's a pretty drastic difference don't you think? Can't you just kind of push me a little? Or maybe just hey it's time to wake me?" Guess it was a little drastic.

"All right maybe it was and that's all I'll admit to." He leaned his head back and had his eyes closed. Why did he look so damn cute at that particular moment? All I could do was look at him, the contours of his face, the way he looked as he sat there relaxed, sitting there against the chair and part of me. Parts of his body were pressed against mine nothing sexual and yet everything in my body screamed that my sexuality was alive and kicking just now. Screaming to be touched by him. Why did I suggest this in the first place. Because I put my mouth in gear before engaging brain that's why. I began running my fingers through his hair combing it with my fingertips.

"Keep that up and I will be asleep for sure babe." This time I didn't care at all, if he wanted to call me that what was so bad about that anyway, I mean really, what was the harm? Comfort. Plain and simple, his comfort with me was the harm and him getting that much more comfortable with me and him expecting me being more comfortable with him. Signifying to him that I was letting him in just a little bit more, and I guess I was. In the back of my head I heard the hammer hitting the brick and chipping away at another piece of the wall. We sat there for a little while longer not really talking at all. Den stayed were he was and I sat there watching the television, slowly he fell asleep. I used my legs by gently rocking him back and forth to bring him back awake.

"Okay stop or I'll get seasick." I had to laugh at his comment.

"I'll have to remember to take you out deep sea fishing the first chance we get!" I knew it was a mean thing to say but I have a twisted sense of humor sometimes. Yes I am the kind of guy that might laugh watching an old lady falling out of her wheelchair, what can I say. I'm just one of those kind with a sick sense of humor.

"Remind me to let you slip going to bed tonight, would you please?"

"Touché sir okay I won't take you out on any boats I promise."

"Well I guess I might keep you from falling then."

"That didn't sound very encouraging."

"Guess you'll have to hang on tighter then won't you? So that's his game.

"Maybe I'll have to do just that then, just to make sure of course. Speaking of how about you get my pills for me and then help me to the bathroom and bed, I think I'm done for the night Den." He got up from the floor and turned towards me placing both hands on either side of me on the arms of the chair.

"Scoot up closer to me, would ya?" I did as he asked me to.

"I really do want to say thanks for letting the boys come and stay here. And I don't want to hear you say anything else about it either and you know exactly what I mean buster. Now kiss me I've been dying for you since dinner, well a good one anyway." I put my arms around him the best I could and leaned in to find his lips seeming to melt into mine. His arms felt like two enormous tree trunks surrounding me and I felt so safe when he did it, so warm. He lips never left mine and slowly his tongue brushed up against my lips seeking entrance to my mouth. It wasn't hard I just parted them slightly and he forged his entrance with sheer dominance, and my body trembled unconsciously with desire. His hand traveled its way up my back to the back of my head which he held in his large hand, not letting me move as he continued kissing me more. I was hard as steel and felt like I was on fire. I didn't even hear myself moan.

"I'm so sorry babe." He stopped and held me. Den hadn't meant to do what he had done I could tell by the tone in his voice and now he was regretting it.

"Don't be Den I let you do this just as much so don't be sorry. Come on now...don't even beat yourself up I won't have it."

"Still I should be twice as careful knowing the shape you're in.......to being on my best behavior and not try teasing you."

"Well I can't say that it would be a whole lot of fun, but if you're good I think we could find a way to take care of this problem we seem to have at the moment." I thought he was going to pass out when I stopped speaking. The look oh his face was a look of total disbelief.

"What do you mean by that? You know it isn't nice to tease a guy when he's in this condition." He looked down not only at me but also at himself and our erections.

"First lets get my pills and take care of the trip to the bathroom then we'll get into bed and we'll take it from there Stretch."

"There you go with that Stretch shit again. When you gonna grow out of that crap? I have a name you know I could start calling you Crip."

"Yes but you won't, you know why? Because........you like me........you want to date me..........you want to kiss me..........you want to have sex with me...." He was standing by this time looking at me like I had a screw loose. But that didn't last long because soon he was laughing.

"That was cute but Sandra Bullock you're not."

"I never said I was. Now sir if you would be as so kind as to get the pills we might make some progress to what might be an enjoyable outcome, for both of us shall I say?"

"You're smooth I'll say that."

"You may." He laughed at me.

Den went to the kitchen to get the water and pills and was back a few seconds later. The rest of the routine went smoothly at least he kept his word and I didn't fall, of course I made sure to hold on a little tighter as promised. Once we got to the bedroom and I got in is where it got interesting.

"So what exactly is your idea now?"

"Actually I thought you'd just take off your clothes and crawl into bed with me but you might want to close the door before you crawl in, just in case. You know I just thought about that and I don't want to be a kill the idea or anything but what about the boys waking up?"

"They'll sleep through lightening storms like you wouldn't believe Rand. And after the day they've had today and being outside in that cold fresh air they'll sleep like rocks tonight." The whole time he was talking he was undressing in front of me. My eyes never left him.

"Well then you just close the door and get in bed with me Den." He finished removing his clothes and put them all on the chair in the corner, the same chair David did the same thing to at night. I couldn't think like that. Den picked up on it at once. He went over and put the clothes on the other chair in the room. Never saying a word until he got a bed.

"I know how much the little things can hurt sometimes even when it's by accident." He never said he was sorry because he knew those aren't the words I needed to hear or even wanted to.

"Thank yo..." He put his fingertips to my lips to silence me.

"So no more about it you never have to thank me or explain anything to me about David. You deeply loved him and I will never try and take his place. You will always love him Randy. I wouldn't ever want you not to. He was someone you loved. How could anyone expect you not to and especially the way he was taken from you. So never feel bad about the way you feel for David. Not with me. Please."

What could I say to that? He put his cards on the table about how he felt about David and about how I felt about David. He was never going to have to compete with David and he made me feel good about that. I wasn't going to compare them anymore which was good for me. In that brief little moment Den had put David to rest for me. Something no one had ever done. Or I should say something I hadn't done for myself. Okay now I did have to thank him to make him understand.

"You do have to listen for a minute this time Den. It's important." Den sat up in the bed to look at me. "What you said made me realize something and without making too much of a deal out of it, but what you just said made me realize that I can finally put David to rest myself. I think I've finally let go of him and I'm okay, really truly okay. And all because of what you just said to me about me and always loving him and the fact how he was just taken from me. I think that was the one thing that no one could understand. And yet you did....just one other person finally understood what I was going through and it just felt like I could finally let him go and be happy for myself now." Den leaned over put his hand behind my head and kissed me and I let him and for once it felt right to me. As before it never felt right.

Den kept his hold on me and gradually began to lower me to the bed never once leaving my lips. The steel I had earlier had returned in earnest. His fingers were everywhere by this time as where mine. Those fingertips felt like they had electric in each one of them and each time he touched me it felt like a pleasurable bolt of electricity went off. His lips were finding their way down my body slowly he wasn't in a hurry and every inch was insane sexual torture. I grabbed at the sheets and pulled at them trying so hard not to rip them from the bed itself. He used his tongue to lick down my treasure trail and I'd thought I was going to go mad. He'd alternate between kissing and licking, my rod kept hitting everywhere on his chin, his neck teasing me all the more as he worked his way closer and closer to my cock. I reached down to touch myself and he brushed my hands away.

"No you don't I'll do all the work you just lay there and I'll take care of you tonight." I was going crazy with desire for him and he just wants to take care of me tonight? Oh no this can't be I have to have him as well.

"We'll see about that." I was barely able to talk to him.

So ends Chapter Two....I know....just when it's getting good right? I'll be editing Chapter Three now for posting in two weeks. I'll post it sooner if I get it done sooner. Just like this one I wasn't going to post it until the April 9. Since I finished it earlier I decided to go ahead and post it. I'll do the same with Three, if I get it done sooner I'll post it, otherwise it will be on the April 20 for Chapter Three. Hope you guys enjoy this Chapter. As always.....Mike

 

Mikey

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