Best Friend

For two weeks after his recent breakup with his latest girlfriend, some Jennifer-Love-Tiffany-Amber, he had moped around the house, looking lost and confused as he usually did after each horrific debacle. But this time, he didn't break down to confide in me with mournful eyes as he usually did. Although once in a while, I'd catch him staring at me with an intense look that I found simply indecipherable.

And now this.

"Come on, darlin' make me gay," he repeated for the second time with a teasing grin.

Contrary to what you would expect, I wasn't his darling. If I was, we wouldn't be having this conversation since I'd be jumping his admittedly sexy bones faster than you'd expect. He probably also knew how I hated him calling me that. It couldn't have been the alcohol. Since we'd sat down for a drink and a bite, he hadn't been drinking more than a glass unless he'd been downing some while I wasn't looking. And I was definitely paying attention to everything he was doing.

But this was Mr Straight and True Blue talking here. There was no way he could be saying this. Not that I hadn't had naughty secret fantasies of him saying exactly that. Since he had come knocking at my apartment to answer my want ad for a roommate, I had often wished the same. Looking at that dark, perfect features, it was easy to see why. And for the next 3 years since then, my friends have continually told me that I was insane to be mooning over a man who was so steadfastly straight. In fact, it was one of the first things he'd admitted to me. Once I'd gotten over the realization that the gorgeous man at my door was there to answer my ad and not to do a stripper's dance, I knew that I had to out myself to him. It was either that or take a leap back into the proverbial closet again as I tried to hide my appetites. And frankly, my closet was already way too cluttered up.

In response he had only grinned in return. "I'm straight. I hope you don't mind."

No matter what happened, I would always remember that phrase he'd used. Instead of shying away from it, he treated homosexuality as almost a boring commonplace and it hardly fazed him at all. Which only made Mr Straight Hunk Boy even more appealing if that was possible. I doubted that I could resist even if I had wanted to. Just look at the man.

But if it was only his great looking pecs and dazzling smile that had me falling all over my feet, I think I just might have gotten over the crush in three years. But God obviously had to punish the poor, suffering gay roommate. People looking at him for the first time would be so dazzled by his good looks that they usually thought bitterly that behind that megawatt smile and the shiny muscles, there was only vacant nothingness. It was a nice, hopeful notion that most of us lesser endowed mortals have that people who are so gifted in their looks are obviously deficient in some other way, in most cases their intellect. It was similar to what I had thought in the beginning and that I had found out later to my regret that I was miserably wrong.

Taking advantage of his sleek good looks, the man walked the runways and his face and body was splattered over a number of billboards and magazine covers. But not only did he advertise and look great in briefs, he also worked on them. Yes, Mr Muscles took part-time modelling as a way to pay off his tuition - to be a damned lawyer. And besides graduating recently at the top 5% of his class, he also had to have a mind sharp enough to slice through.. well anything and wit enough to compare with my own - so much for a gorgeous but dim-witted roomie. He also had a keen sense of humour. It was amazing how we seemed to laugh at the same lousy jokes and smile at the same exact moment in a movie. And he could make the most boring subject in the world - one of the old cases that he was forever reviewing - seem almost funny.

And to cap it all off, the man cooked like a dream.

So in the past four years, I had slowly and irrevocably fallen in love with the idiot. It must have been those flawless... waffles. Sure, great buns were nice to look at - and his were award-winning - but with four years of just looking at the goods, I had to depend on something considerably more substantial than hunky eye-candy. Sure, I probably made him sound like a paragon of virtues and that was the last thing he was. He was a flesh and blood man and he had his share of annoying traits that I could expound on for hours if not days. Don't even get me started on his stubborn ass ways.

So, I continued dating. Heck, Paul even threw in a few recommendations. In his naive enthusiasm to get me out and dating, he practically tossed me at every available gay man in town. Walking in the streets, he'd point out cute guys - or what he assumed was cute - and asked me to jump their bones. But none of them worked out. Somehow , there just wasn't the spark that I felt when I was around Paul. Hell, the man exuded more sex appeal from his lil finger than all of them put together.

My friends all obviously said that I was nuts. From the beginning, he had made it clear that he was totally irrevocably straight but he was totally fine with my sexual orientation. Sure, I'd tried hitting on him in the beginning but nothing came of it. So with time, I decided that rather than lose him, I decided that having him as a best friend would be better than nothing at all. Yeah, whoever said that having half a loaf of bread was better was undoubtedly an idiot - and hadn't tasted Paul's golden crisp waffles.

He was my closest pal in every way that matters. Some of my friends had taken to calling him my husband and in a way it probably was everything that I had dreamed of. A man who welcomed me home everyday with a warm hug and smile. Who I could count on to be there whenever I needed him - and to have the perfect dinner ready! He cooked, he cleaned up the house if nagged, never left the toilet seat up and he made great coffee. Only there was no sex. Ever. It was practically the PG version of a gay romance.

It was not that homosexuality disgusted the man. It would have made it so much easier if he had been violently homophobic. Then I would have had gotten over the sophomoric crush I'd had on him earlier on and life would be so much easier. But no. Homosexuality didn't drive him crazy. It just totally baffled him. He just couldn't conceive the idea that a man could love another man in that way. After all, men were pigs, he had said with a lazy smile.

"Hey!" Realizing that he was rapidly losing his audience, he gave me a gentle nudge to bring me back to the present. "Come on, you have tagged along with me on some of my dates and you've even gone to the places that I've been. Why have you never asked me to one of your ..umm.. gay bars?"

Of course, one of his annoying traits was his persistence.

But back to his question. Why? Hmm.. perhaps it had never occurred to me that he'd be interested. And I wasn't such a fan of hanging out at bars anymore anyway.

In the beginning, when I was still in a state of denial and shock over the fact that I was madly, heads-over-heels in love with a hunky breeder, I dated incessantly. Hit every gay, happening and wild spot in town - desperately hoping to find a man who'd match the straight stud at home. After all, although I might not even come close to his level of sex appeal - which was practically astronomical - I did have my fair share of good looks and I did have my admirers. So I dated. Very often and with very little discernment but I curtailed that activity after some time as I realized that none of them could possibly live up to such high expectations - namely Paul. Of course that was also after the last sleazy, low-life scum had groped his way up my thigh.

"Why? The bars aren't at all interesting. And.. " And the queens over there would have a field day with a A-Grade hunk of meat like you. I'd have to bloody hell beat them off with a big stick.

"C'mon, show me all your dark places." He grinned playfully and gave me another nudge. "Don't lie to me. I know you go to those places."

Any other time, I could have stood firm on my stand but in view of that smile, I relented but I still needed to find out for sure. My dark eyes narrowed suspiciously and I decided to give him a little push. "Why do you suddenly want to go? Is this some kinda scientific experiment? You haven't gone gay on me, have you?"

Expecting a vehement denial and an exhortation of his rampant heterosexuality, I was surprised when the man just smiled easily in return. "Take me there and you'll know for sure, won't you? C'mon. I just want to know my very best friend. You've seen all my hangouts and yet you haven't shown me a single one of your places. I just want to get to know you better."

Did I mention earlier that I hated to be called babe? It was his best cajoling tone and he probably knew it. Usually that and those dimples always made me just wanna roll over, bend over, well practically do whatever the man wanted. And there was no doubt that he probably knew it too.

Oh God, there was that dimple!

Well, I certainly was no proof against that smile and those dimples. In about half an hour, we were both standing outside Dinty's, a neighbourhood bar where everybody knew everybody else's name - and their ex-boyfriend's too. Parked out on the sidewalk, Paul stood aside and gazed up at the name of the bar, a curious smile hanging on his lips. Dressed in a black V-neck sweater and crisp black khakis, he looked simple, sexy and scrumptious, one of those low-fat, low-calorie desserts that could only do you good.

If anything, another thing that differentiated him from other straight slobs was the fact that the man was a sharp dresser. Occasionally, the clothes that he wore made me want to tear it off with my teeth to get to the good stuff. He looked that good. Of course, with that face and that body, he could look dangerously sexy in a burlap sack. But his taste didn't run towards sacks, it ran towards branded material with foreign names that I couldn't pronounce for the life of me. Whoever had said that the homos had the monopoly on style and taste had not met this breeder.

"Staring again." Sensing my close scrutiny, he turned, smiled and struck a pose for me. "You like?"

Oh, I definitely liked. And could clearly imagine tearing off that sweater and having my wild way with him on the sidewalk. It would have been simple enough except a flash of his naked flesh would probably cause a riot in these parts. "Are you sure about this?"

"It looks like a great place. I'd never have thought.." Paul grinned playfully and shoved his hands into his pants, trying to look innocent.

If I'd wanted to punish the man, I'd have brought him to the meanest, sleaziest leather S&M bar in town - not that I knew where that was! - and tossed him - like the succulent prime Grade A beef he was to the rabid. aggresive wolves for an orgasmic feast. But he was my best friend no matter what and I simply couldn't find it in my heart to subject his sweet vanilla and American apple pie hetero proclivities to such raunchy fetishes. And anyway, frankly I was afraid of those places myself.

So I brought him over to my favourite bar, Dinty's. Paul was right. An outsider wouldn't even have pegged it as a gay bar. Guys were playing and laughing together over the pool table, a group of 20 somethings were kidding around over by the dart board, a few average joes were riding the bar sharing drinks. It was a typical man's bar. But look closely and you'd find that at least 80% of the customers were true blue and utterly gay.

"Never have guessed that it was full of fags?" I said in a decidedly mean way.

The smile on his face fell. "You know that's not how I meant it."

The disappointment on his handsome face ought to make me ashamed but I shoved the thought aside. I was suddenly grumpy. Grumpy at the fact that I was finally about to enter my favourite bar with a major hunk who simply wasn't mine! "I don't know. How should I know what you meant? I don't even know what gave you the idea to follow me here?"

His face brightened. "Actually it was Angela's idea. She asked me to go take a look."

At this moment of vulnerability, I certainly didn't need to be reminded of Angela, the fabulously beautiful undergraduate that he had dated for the past three months or so. I could have hated her for being so perky, so charming and the worst of it all - looking so good in heels but I found that I couldn't. She was great, friendly and incredibly smart too - which was a welcome change from the clingy, curvy bimbettes with more boobs than brains that he usually brought home. More than once, I'd occasionally wondered whether their brains had somehow gone for a slow slide down into their more than ample cleavage.

But Angela Morelli was different. Angela majored in Psychology which gave us plenty to talk about and I admitted that I did like her. Amazingly, we'd even gone for drinks and 'dates' together. No doubt I would probably have given my blessing to the holy union of the perfect Angela and the equally perfect Paul if there wasn't that niggling, possessive lil part of me that wanted the divine Angela tossed out the window. And Paul coming to sweep me off my feet after that happened of course.

But that never happened. Actually in a sense it did although Paul never swept me off anything. Not that he ever swept anything in the house without prodding but that was something else altogether.

Out of the blue however, fabulous Angela suddenly up and decides to toss herself out the window - with no help from yours truly - and leaves Paul. In a decidedly mature, classy manner too. I never did get what she had told him two weeks ago but it seemed as if they had parted as friends. Which was a surprise as usually Paul had to get a restraining order to get one of his bimbettes away from his lust-inspiring body.

A note about Paul's bimbettes. For the whole time that I've known him, the man had been dating like.. well I hate to say this about him, but the promiscuous hound dog seemed to be dating everyone and anyone in town. And probably doing more than half of them if not all. Clearly, I had no need of further proof of his heterosexuality especially when I had loud moans and groans with the accompanying creaking bed coming from the room next door. And our stash of condoms slowly depleting as fast as I could replenish it.

If anything, he seemed to be an incredible lover which made me hate the cunning, luscious bimbettes even more. Enough lusty praise about his length and girth seeped through the wall for me to fantasize about it almost daily - and had me checking out his crotch to confirm my suspicions. But he never stayed with them longer than 2 months. Which made the luscious Angela even more memorable as she'd lasted a good 5 months.

So what did the wily Angela mean when she'd made that suggestion? "Angela sent you here?"

"Look." Running his hand through his hair in mild frustration, Paul sighed and stopped me as I was going in. "If you really don't want me here, I'll understand. I'll leave."

Put it in that matured, understanding manner, what could I do? He was being a nice guy and I was being a major, tight-assed bitch. Pasting a reconciliatory smile on my face, I shrugged. "Don't say I didn't warn you, pretty boy."

"So you do think I'm pretty, huh." His blue eyes twinkled.

Refusing to commit myself, I declined to comment and pushed open the door to enter.

As we entered the bar, a few queens at a side table turned around and checked out Paul's excellent bod - which left them drooling - and had my hackles rising. The jealous, insane bitch hidden deep inside me roared and threatened to lop their heads off but before I could even answer with a decent snarl, a large arm snaked around my waist and pulled me back - hard against a broad chest.

"You gotta protect me, babe." There was a secret smile on his face as he bent down and nuzzled my neck.

For the first time since puberty, I was afraid that my voice practically squeaked when I answered, "What the hell are you doing? Get off me."

"Maybe later," Paul whispered into my ear, his blue eyes twinkling with laughter. Seeing the shock on my face, he laughed and released me. "Come on, let me buy you a drink, stranger."

For a whole minute, I stood there staring at him. What was up with him?

Straddling a seat at the bar, he beckoned to me with a crook of his finger and a smile. As I said before, I simply couldn't resist the man. And I doubt anyone could resist that look in his eyes.

Taking the seat beside him, I ordered my drink and made a vow to sit there stoically silent. Not only had he invaded one of my private sanctums and ventured into the gay world, now he'd even made what I would have termed a come-on from any other man but him. Recalling his actions tonight, I simply couldn't find any reason for the way he was acting. Maybe Paul wasn't telling a lie and he was just trying to enjoy himself for the night. Or maybe he was really high on some drugs?

So it was with some suspicion that I turned to him and looked at him. His eyes looked clear and he didn't seem to be on anything although he seemed to be in a little too good a mood for a man who had just been dumped by someone he'd termed the best lady he'd ever met.

"My God, you're doing it again." Crossing his arms, he leaned a little back and grinned at me. "I can practically see the little wheels in your head turning, Doctor. Trying to analyze my every move. Don't."

Was that it? Was he trying to psyche me out for some obscure reason? Was this some diabolical plan to drive me crazy? Was this..

Then the man had the gall to laugh. "Oh God, you are just t-too much!"

"What's the real reason you wanted to follow me, Donovan?" I said insistently.

His laughter stopped abruptly but he still kept on grinning. "Why? Are you gonna bring out the whips and cuffs if I refuse to answer?"

"Paul," I gritted out as I tried to repress the erotic images that came to my mind at the thought of whips and Paul.

It was my mean tone and he knew it. Immediately, his grin faded. "Come on, I really meant it earlier. I just want to hang out with my very best friend. Is it too much to ask for you to just lay off the amateur psychoanalyzing for one night and just enjoy yourself with me?"

Amateur! Who was he calling amateur? But nevertheless, I managed to relax a little and returned his smile. "Okay, I believe you. But I am still gonna keep an eye on you."

"Great, then." Apparently cheered by that fact, Paul gave me a warm pat on the back. "That's what I'm counting on, babe."

The drinks arrived and I took a sip of mine. "So what do you plan to do here?"

Wiping off the drink mustache, Paul just shrugged. "Just hang around, I guess. Check out the crowd, that kinda thing."

Taking a quick glance around the room, I saw that there were already more than a few guys in the bar who had definitely noticed Paul's presence. "If you ask me, the crowd's already checking you out," I replied dryly.

"Jealous, babe?"

For a minute, I was tempted to tell him the truth. That my evil queen bitch persona was aching to claw a few roving eyes out and roast them over a slow fire. And then tie a large sign around Paul's neck proclaiming my ownership. Look but don't touch! But I suppressed that thought and answered blithely, "You keep on wishing, Donovan."

Without warning, he suddenly put his arm around me again and pulled me close. "Don't worry, the only man I'm leaving the bar with tonight is you."

His arm remained around me and I could have moved aside like I had tried to earlier but I didn't. First I knew it was ultimately futile since he was bigger and stronger than me. I mean, with his 6'4" and me at 5'7", you do the math.

And anyway, occasionally when something got to him, he could be way more persistent. Secondly, the aftershave he was wearing was simply intoxicating - especially when mixed together with the melange of soap, fresh air and the spice that was all Paul Donovan.

"Hey, Adam, you're back. You had me wondering what had happened to you!" The voice could belong to no one else but Ralph.

"Hey, Ralph, long time no see." And it was. Big, brawny and dark, Ralph came lumbering up to the bar. "How's things?"

Taking a quick look around the bar, Ralph nodded. "Fine. Everything's fine. Don't have to ask how you're doing. I can see you're doing fine and I can see very well what's been keeping you busy these days." Friendly as always, Ralph flashed a toothy grin at Paul, his black eyes warm and appreciative. "And frankly I don't blame ya."

Pulling his arm away from me, Paul lifted it to offer a handshake. "I'm Paul Donovan."

"I'm Ralph Nolan, owner of this lil dive here." Tossing the cloth he'd had over one broad shoulder, he returned Paul's handshake with one of his hamsized fists, pumping it enthusiastically. "And since you're new - and since you're obviously good friends with my good man Doc over here, the drinks for you's on the house."

"There's no need -" I tried to protest but Ralph waved me off.

"I said it before and I'll say it again." Placing his hands on the edge of the bar, he talked straight to Paul. "You know what Doc did for me. This man saved my sainted mother, that's what he did."

"Really?" Paul said, looking interested. Glancing over at me with a raised brow, he continued, "He certainly never told me that."

Adjusting my seat, I just shrugged it off. "I just did some CPR when Mrs Nolan had a heart attack. Just kept her going till the ambulance showed up. No big deal."

"No big deal, he says." Chuckling, Ralph gave me a light punch on the shoulder. It felt like a truck had rammed into me. "Well anyway, you've got yourself a good man sitting there, Paul Donovan."

Instead of denying the fact vehemently and proclaiming his heterosexuality to the world, my man there just grinned back in return. "I'm starting to get that. And I intend to keep him."

If my eyes could have bugged out, it would have. As it was, I could barely stammer out a reply. "Ralph, he's just kidding. We're not together, we're just friends and he's -"

I was about to beat out the jungle drums to yell out an affirmation of his macho heterosexual masculinity but I had no time. Who knew the man could move that fast. As long as I've known him, the man moved slow. While that trait irritated me, I used to say that it was his Southern slow-as-molasses blood that did it and he'd just smile in that sweet way he had and drawl out, "That's 'jes me, honey."

But in a flash, he had those incredible lips pressed against mine and I was finding out the reason he had flocks of wild women screaming his name every night. The man could kiss.

Since I was a kid, I always wondered how great a kiss could be that it could cause brilliant fireworks to explode overhead as in the old movies. AS I grew up, I came to realize that it probably doesn't occur that often and Hollywood probably made it up. I was wrong. Right then, I felt as if Chinese New Year had come a tad early.

When he released me, I was tempted to go into a swoon and lift my hands out for a vinaigrette. Now I finally realized what Scarlett felt when Rhett pulled her close. Not only could those incredible lips do wonders, that tongue of his clearly deserved a medal too. Imagine what he could do with those large hands. At that moment I didn't even want to think about that heated bulge in his crotch. "W-what -"

"Only friends, huh." His deep blue eyes twinkled. "Friends who fuck around, maybe."

I spluttered out, "What the fucking hell- "

Watching us with a delighted smile, Ralph couldn't help teasing me. "Looks like you've got yourself a winner, I think."

"I don't have him. He's not mine," I insisted helplessly.

Leaning close, Paul squeezed my hand. "Aw shucks, honey. Why argue the facts? I'm yours. You sure yelled it out loud enough last night."

The shock after the kiss had worn off and I stared at him. What the hell was the man up to? Was the gay air in the bar affecting him? Some weird vibe? His drink had some homo virus?

Laughing easily at Paul's frank admission, Ralph wished him luck and went on to serve another customer. The minute he was out of ear's reach, I waded into the fray. "What the hell was that about?" I demanded to know. Part of me wanted to quickly wipe my mouth before I got irrevocably addicted to Eau de Paul but part of me couldn't help lingering over the amazing aftertaste.

There was that secret look on his face again. "It was a kiss. Didn't you like it?"

I rarely lied and I didn't intend to start tonight so I just gave him a quick nudge hoping to make his kiss look as harmless as it was probably intended to on his part. After all, how would the man know that his kisses left my knees feeling weak. And inadvertently jumpstarted my erection. "Don't do it again."

A triumphant smile blossomed on his face. "I'll try."

"And wipe that smile off your face."

For the next half hour, we talked about the regular things. And he recounted a story he'd heard that day about one of his colleagues. As promised, he didn't make another pass at me nor did he make a grab at me which relieved me considerably. Of course I simply didn't want to think of the tiny bit of disappointment that I was feeling too.

"You're drifting off again," Paul complained companionably and gave me a light pat on the shoulder.

"No, I am not!" Realizing that I was probably doing what he'd said, I amended it. "Well, maybe but I was just thinking."

"Of what?"

Taking in the view of the bar, I smiled. "Thinking that every gay man in the bar must be wishing they were in my seat."

Raising a curious dark brow, Paul asked me what I meant by that.

It was pretty obvious what I meant and I simply couldn't believe that he could be oblivious to the looks he had been getting. Throughout the evening, half the gay boys in the bar had been making passes at him. "You know what I mean."

"No, I don't." Flashing a quick teasing smile at me, he shrugged and threw up his hands in surrender. "Hey, sometimes you say some pretty deep stuff and it takes some time for my poor lil brain to digest it. Take pity on me."

The 'aw-shucks' dumb country boy look didn't do anything for me. Not when I knew he'd probably used it in court to get some extra credit from the jury. But I felt compelled to tell him. "You know you're a good-looking guy. I don't have to tell you that. Without me as your ball and chain, I think the gay boys in Dinty's would be all over you like hungry vultures over a particularly delectable bone."

"Bone?" In the midst of lifting up his mug, he put it back down again. Carefully, he kept his gaze on the table. "You paint quite a picture, Adam."

"I do, don't I?" His uncharacteristic response puzzled me. I thought it would get a laugh out of him. He certainly enjoyed laughing.

"But they don't know me as well as you. All they see is a pretty slick front, all bright smiles and muscles. You know me, warts and all." Suddenly, he looked up from the table, his blue eyes gazing into mine with an unerring focus. "How about you, Adam? Do you find me attractive? Even with the warts and all."

Those eyes pinned me under a microscope and I wiggled under it, trying to find a way to evade the question. It had never occurred to me that Paul would suffer from low self esteem. He was gorgeous, witty, wealthy, intelligent, popular. What else could the man possibly want? Was he attractive? How could he possibly ask such a question? His face and body was pasted all over the place. The world thought he was gorgeous! Could I think any less? The fact that I loved him for more than his looks only made him far more attractive to me.

But I simply couldn't betray the fact that I felt that much for him - that even now, if he'd just whisper yes, I'd have thrown him down on the floor and had my way with him right on Dinty's table top. To hell with the laws of decency. I was dying to confirm that Paul Donovan really could live up to my X-rated fantasies. Of course with the brief encounter I'd had with that thick tool snaking down his pants, he just might exceed all my expectations.

So I answered cautiously, watching his expression closely. "Paul, I think anyone would be lucky to have you as a boyfriend."

He clearly wasn't pleased with my carefully worded answer. "I don't want what anybody thinks. What do you think?"

"You want to know what I think?" Well, lying certainly wasn't in my bag and I never could do it to him. "Yes, I think you are attractive. If you were in the bar alone, I'd probably be buying you a drink."

Apparently, I succeeded in my intent and received a warm smile from him. "I'd have let you buy me breakfast too."

The implication of what he said made me laugh. "Get out of here, asshole!"

Pausing to take a quick gulp of his beer, he turned to me. "Hey, I think I gotta pee. Where's the men's room?"

Swivelling on my seat, I pointed to the back of the bar but seeing the crowd at the back eyeing him, I felt compelled to add a warning against some of the drooling fags who were bound to make a move on him.

This only made him smile wryly as he slid off the stool. "It's not the first time, Adam, people have made passes on me before. I do know how to watch my ass."

Sometimes it made me wonder. A man who looked like that in the modelling world. Sure most male models looked great but there was a certain something about Paul that made him stand out. No wonder he had been getting movie offers lately. The puppy-dog look in those amazing eyes? The incredible dimple? That award-winning ass? Yeah, I'd bet more than a few people would have tried to make a move on him.

As I was sitting there nursing our drinks, I heard a familiar voice at my ear.

"Adam, when did you decide to come down to join the meat market again?"

I turned with a warm welcoming smile. Surprisingly, Charlie Fernandez looked almost conservative today. Of course that still meant that under his leather jacket, his T-shirt was a screaming hot pink with the words 2QR2BSTR8 emblazoned across his chest paired with jeans so tight it looked painted on. Not to mention the carefully ragged out holes in appropriate places baring his white briefs which wrapped tight around an incredible male ass. Of course with his dark good looks, he could carry off most everything. In the time I'd moved here, he was one of my closest friends and I warmly hugged him back. "Hey, I couldn't keep myself out of circulation that long. Gotta find me a hot man to warm my bed."

"Yeah, right, a nun like you." Removing his jacket, Charlie leaned back and took the seat vacated by Paul. "Ah.. the evidence shows that the chair is still warm. Spill the beans. And here I thought you were still all caught up with your Breeder Hunk Boy again."

I frowned. "I was never caught up with him."

"Yeah, right!" Taking a moment to order his drink, Charlie snorted in response. "Then where is your husband?"

"He's not my husband and he's in the men's room."

The excited squeal that Charlie made could be heard clear in the next continent. "Get out of here! Sexy Saint Paul visiting the denizens of gaydom? Could it be? Is he finally turning over to the dark side?" His voice dropped to a whisper and he ad-libbed the Darth Vader theme.

I could only wish, I thought to myself. "Don't get your knickers in a twist. He's still straight, gay boy."

"So far he is. But he's never had a taste of our side of life yet." Charlie grinned. "Who knows, he might like it."

Chuckling in return, I gave him a poke in the arm. "Don't even think about it. I wouldn't want to get one of his fists out of your face."

"Mmm.. male violence always gets me hot. All that flexing muscle and testosterone. And you know the sizzling rumours about his... size..." Charlie chuckled. "But don't worry, I won't lay a hand on your merchandise, as delectable as he may be. Thou shalt not covet a brother's sexy husband and all that."

I was taking another gulp of my drink and I sputtered. Giving him one of my death glares, I whispered fiercely. "Will you stop that! Why do you guys keep on calling him mine?"

The man was undaunted and calmly continued. "Darling, how could he not be yours? Even a blind man would see that." Charlie commented. When the drinks arrived, he paid and took a quick sip before he answered, "Well, he might not be gay now but if Straight Hunk Boy ever had the urge to swing our way, I bet he'd swing your way, first."

"Yeah, right." I snorted in disbelief.

"Darling, if I didn't believe that he was utterly straight, I'd think the man was sweet on you the way he dotes on you."

"Dote?" My eyes widened. "What? That's impossible."

"Why impossible, Doubting Sue? He goes out all the way in the rain to buy you those damned chocolates that you love, drives to the city and queues for three hours just for that stupid hardcover you wanted. And then there was that time when.." Seeing the look on my face, he stopped. "Oh My God. That's what it is. I had some idea of it but I never knew it was true. God, I love to be confirmed in my suspicions!"

Running my hands down my face to search for evidence, I gaped. "What's true?"

His hands suddenly grabbed me and shook me a little. "You really do love Big Dick Straight Vanilla Hunk Boy, don't you?"

"I..I.." I gaped and alarm bells started ringing in my head. "I-I don't.. I don't.."

As he looked at my stunned expression, Charlie's smile only grew wider and wider. "You can't even bring yourself to say it. Just repeat after me. You love him!"

"Love who?"

That deep voice behind us had us both squealing in fright and we turned to see Paul standing watching us. Flustered, Charlie stuttered a hello while I sat there agape. How long had the man been standing there? Had he heard everything? Why did he just stand there smiling? I was about to scream and run if he hadn't just grinned that Cheshire cat smile of his and extended his hand in greeting to Charlie. Soon they were chatting away while I stood there staring. He didn't seem to have heard what we said. Which was a relief.

"Hey, I gotta go. Have to hit on some hot hunk for tomorrow's breakfast. See you guys." He mouthed lovebirds behind Paul's back but I shot him the finger which made him laugh as he made his jaunty exit.

As Charlie had babbled incessantly about his intrepid exploits earlier, I had been somewhat silent during their conversation. From the quick glances that Paul occasionally shot my way, I was starting to get a little worried that he might just have heard a little more than what I'd hoped.

Downing the last gulp of his beer, Paul sighed. "I think that's enough for my first introduction to gay life." He smiled and gave my hand a squeeze. "Want to go?"

The sudden body contact had me pulling my hand away on reflex but the man had anticipated it and he held on tight. He made no comment but his eyes spoke volumes. Unfortunately, I simply couldn't decipher him today and I quickly mumbled my assent. "Yeah, it's getting late. Let's go home."

It was only three blocks down from our apartment and the evening was cool and crisp. As we walked back to our place, we started talking. Well, that is he did the talking while I listened, my whole mind in a whirl. What had just happened? I was utterly confused and I felt as if I'd stepped into some gay Twilight Zone. Was this some kinda insane rebound stage that he was going through? The thought occurred to me again. Was he on drugs?

"And the judge said... Adam!" he grumbled in exasperation.

I glanced up and realized that I'd been caught staring - at his great lips no less and my face flushed. "W-what did you say?"

Pausing in his stride, he leaned closer and whispered in his sexy purr, "Fuck me hard up the ass."

"What?" Did the man just say what I think he just did? Did he sound this irresistible in bed? Stunned, I goggled at him. "What?"

Satisfied that he had made his point, he quirked a smile. "You haven't been listening to a word I've said."

What he'd just said was still ringing in my mind and I could hardly pay attention. Visions of his amazing gluts swam in my mind. "Yes, I have. You mentioned about the MacMurphy case and the verdict today."

"I stand corrected. But something's on your mind. Want a penny?"

"Cute." I smiled. "No, Paul, it's nothing."

"Nothing?" He raised one of his eyebrows in disbelief, a skill that I had always wanted to imitate. "I know you. And I know nothing. That's not it. C'mon, tell Father Paul. You know you can tell me anything."

That was true. Usually I could tell him anything but not this. How could I tell him that I wanted to throw him down on the nearest flat surface and bite that irresistible spot on his neck? That tonight had been.. incredible. The events might have totally baffled me and knocked me for a loop but I couldn't help enjoying the fact that he had been mine for the night. "It's just some patient that I've been seeing."

My answer left him looking dubious but he evidently decided not to pursue the thought which had me sighing with relief. When he put on that lawyer cap of his, he could interrogate the hell out of me. "I know you're lying through your teeth but I am having too nice a time to argue. Adam, I had a really good time tonight."

I wonder which part he had liked. The part where he pretended that he had lost his keys down my throat and was searching for it? "It was nice," I answered non-committally.

We were nearing our apartment building and he stopped just outside the main entrance. There was that almost shy look on his face again. "We should do it again next time, Adam."

He stood there in the crisp autumn wind, his dark hair mussed up, his blue eyes looking soft and earnest. Yet again, I found my throat was all choked up and I could barely manage a reply. Another date? I doubt my heart could take another date. God, stupid me for falling for a straight man. I could have gotten a puppy instead. "Yeah, that would be nice."

There was a puzzled look on his chiseled face and a disappointed frown in his eyes but I figured I must have been mistaken. We both remained silent as we entered the building and all the way upstairs. The 'date' that we had been on had left me feeling a little awkward and I felt bad at giving him the impression that I hadn't enjoyed myself when I had. His silence made me feel worse and I wondered whether he was mad at something. At me?

As we got off the elevator and started down to our apartment, I stopped him just outside. "Wait, Paul."

He paused and stared quietly at the hand I'd placed on his chest. There was that unusual look in his eyes again.

If I had more courage and bravado - perhaps more brazen like Charlie - I might have run my hands down his chest and felt up more than just his incredibly well-molded pec but I didn't. Instead, I slowly lowered my hand. "Paul, I did enjoy myself tonight. More than I ever thought I would." Trying to make light of the situation, I smiled at him and gave him a punch on his arm. "In fact, I think you're the best date I've had in months. After all, you haven't felt me up yet."

His somber expression was transformed by his quick grin. "Is that an invitation?"

"Take it any way you want it, Donovan." I laughed and gave him a friendly shove as I started searching for my keys.

But as I dug around my jacket for the apartment key, I felt a sudden movement behind me. I barely caught my breath before I found myself shoved against the locked door and a pair of heated blue eyes boring deep into mine.

"Damn it, I can't stop myself. Prepare to be felt up." Those were the last words I heard before the impossible happened again.

Those lips came down on me again and I found I couldn't resist him. My brain might have said no but my body simply wanted another pulse-pounding, adrenaline-burning explosion. And this time as promised, his hands came into action too as they roamed all over. I didn't mind much, I was doing pretty much the same.

Pulling away, Paul stared at me, his blue eyes flashing with some light that I'd never seen before. "Adam, show me how men make wild animal love."

It sounded like I was hallucinating big-time but faced with 200 pounds of male muscles pressing me hard against our apartment door, I knew it couldn't be a dream. His words and the look on his face reverberated in my mind weakening my resolve.

I was a weak man. Faced with the man that I have loved for so long and the words that he had just said, I melted like butter under a hot knife. How could I resist?

It had to be the best sex ever. Mind-blowing. If I had to rate it, I would have to make a new scale since a mere 10 seemed much too mediocre. A gleeful smile crept up my face. And I'd finally confirmed for myself the rumours about Paul's size. They were right.

As the morning light crept in the windows, I looked down on the hairy, well-muscled arm across my chest and I smiled fondly. Attached to it was the man that I loved. Amazingly, he looked as good in the morning as he had last night. Another point to hate him but it was true. Hair gently mussed from last night, heavy-eyed with sleep and with that gentle half-smile on his lips, he looked like he'd stepped off a billboard advertisement. Fuck, he couldn't even have the decency to wake up looking like a mess - like every other normal man did. Shaking my head in mock disgust, I trailed my fingers gently down his arm. If only Paul were to wake up with me every morning, it would be perfect.

But as reality slowly kicked in, I looked down at the arm and felt myself starting to choke in panic. The horror of what had just happened set it. It was Paul. What's going to happen to us? This is a mistake. After all,
a) he's totally straight
b) he has never stayed with a single partner longer than 6 months
c) he was my best friend! What had I done!

Reasons and excuses ran through my head. Perhaps I could just say that last night meant nothing to me and gently let him slide back into his sweet vanilla hetero life. Or I could admit that it was a freak combustion of our hormones. Or that I'd drugged him or something. After all, there was no way Paul could ever love me! It must have been a dream. Adrenaline rushed through my veins and I tried to make a run for it. Charlie would house me till I could find another state to live in.

I would probably have been hallway across the room and about half my journey to the next state if that same brawny, muscular arm hadn't twisted itself around me like a vine and held me in place.

"Adam?" His voice was still sleepy and sounded more than a little grouchy. It took me but a moment to remember that Paul had never liked waking up in the wee hours of the morning. "Where do you think you're going, Doc? It's still early."

Okay, that term was even worse than babe. As I gritted my teeth in preparation for a scathing reply, he pulled me even closer. "W-what the hell are you doing?"

The sleepy smile on his face turned smug. "I know you, babe, and I know how you think."

Now, that irritated me. Struggling was useless and a waste of energy since the man was bigger than me, taller than me, stronger than me - and way better at wrestling than me. But I just had to try. So it was that in seconds I was pinned underneath over 200 pounds of naked male muscle and trying very hard not to get aroused by it. "Let me up, Paul." I said it my meanest voice.

Trying to act oblivious, he flashed me his most innocent grin. "Aw, shucks honey, I thought you loved to have me on top. You sure couldn't get enough of that last night."

Seeing the growing anger on my rapidly reddening face, he sobered down and said quietly. "Look, I know what you're thinking. I know that -"

"You don't know. You don't know what I'm thinking so just stop saying that." Good God! Did I sound peevish?

"Wanna bet?" He gave me a superior smirk that I wish I could have wiped off that darned handsome face. Had I said he was gorgeous in the morning? No, I was wrong, he was an ornery bastard in the morning.

Seeing the frustration on my face as I continued struggling, he laughed. "Babe, you are brilliant. Sometimes, I am amazed by the things that go on in that brain of yours but sometimes, well, sometimes, I think you think too much."

Think too much! I'll give him too much thinking, the musclebound, testosterone-powered Neanderthal!

Before I could make a proper retort, he pressed one of his hand against my lips. Well, I might have hated him right now but I couldn't help thinking, God, those hands. "Give me five minutes, Adam, and just listen."

"Look, I know what you're worried about. This is not a one time event for me. I have thought this through, Adam. This isn't just a wave of drunken, hormonal impulse." Stopping me again before I could speak, he continued. "You want to know why I broke it off with Angela. It wasn't me. It was all her. She said that it was clear that I was meant to be with someone else. And you know who she was talking about?"

A whole bevy of Paul's previous bimbettes paraded in my mind and I was at a loss. "Uhh.. Yasmine Bleeth?"

He grinned. "Smart-ass. No, it was you."

I gaped.

"Yeah, it knocked me for a loop at first but you know what. She was right. The reason I haven't been doing well in any of my relationships recently is because I have already given my heart to someone else. And stupid of me, I just didn't realize it. Even when I was going out with Angela, I would compare her.. well, to you. Weird as it may sound," he admitted with a chuckle. "So when we broke it off, she told me to face up to myself. And well, guess what! I did."

Catching my hand in his, he spoke softly. "Babe, I love you. More than anyone else in this world. Maybe even from the first day that I saw you. This is not some act of impulse or some insane, drunken fit. I planned this. I wanted this to happen."

For once, I had nothing to say.

As the shower sprayed across my face, I felt a little more like myself. My eyes strayed to the bathroom door and I sighed with relief when I noticed that it was still locked. For a minute, I thought Paul would really barge in as he'd threatened earlier. It was a picture of how different we were. After Paul's shocking revelation earlier, I had been utterly shell-shocked and struck dumb. Which was the total opposite of him. After his sudden revelation, the man had just laughed and offered - with a teasing wink - to soap up my back during his regular morning shower.

At that moment, his innuendoes hardly registered in my head as I was still trying to assimilate what he had just said. In barely minutes, my whole life had been turned upside down. The man I loved was... attainable. More than attainable. He claimed to be in love with me too. The very idea was mind-boggling. An earthquake with a Richter scale of 9.0 wouldn't have fazed me at that moment.

Recognizing my stunned expression, Paul just chuckled and had given me a friendly nudge as he went for his shower. Only when he stomped downstairs to prepare breakfast like he did everyday did I decide to make a dash into the bathroom. Locking the door for security.

Especially after he threatened to break in to ravish me.

Not that I minded being ravished by him. It was those earth-shattering words. Logical person that I am, I couldn't believe that someone could do a 180 degree turn and suddenly decide that they were in love. It was crazy. It was insane. It could only happen in wacky romance novels!

As I washed my hair, I promptly came to the conclusion that the break-up with Angela had clearly affected his mind.

As usual, he had whipped up something that smelled wonderful in the kitchen. While I might hate him for some of his sterling qualities, I loved the way the man cooked. While I continued my ongoing struggle with the concept of cooking and could barely manage instant noodles, the man could do something wonderful with just some flour and eggs - a virtue which I blessed his mother, Mrs Donovan for.

"I brought in the papers." Turning around from the kitchen counter, he gestured to the table. "Take a seat. There's some waffles on the table."

The waffles were golden, hot and looked incredible. Being roommates for so long, Paul knew that waffles were my weakness. Eventhough I was annoyed at the man, I simply couldn't resist taking a bite. Pulling the plate closer, I began to see the analogy between the food that the man cooked and the man himself. I certainly couldn't resist biting into Paul either. As I took a deep bite and wallowed in the taste, I simply couldn't help muttering, "This doesn't mean anything, you know."

"Just shut up and eat." Seeing the mutinous look on my face, he smiled, leaned over and squeezed my hand which made me yelp. "Adam. I love you."

The three little words still shook me a little but I managed to steel myself. So, the man looked undeniably cute wearing the thick blue apron I'd given him with the cliched Kiss The Cook emblazoned across his broad chest and the soft, puppy-dog look in his eyes still made my knees turn to water. But it didn't mean anything, I told myself sternly. This was a temporary delirium brought upon by traumatic stress.

Absentmindedly munching through the waffle, I was busy trying to find out what was behind his recent declarations but I simply couldn't find a valid reason. I started wondering whether Charlie had slipped something into his drink. "Stop all that. It's not funny, Donovan."

"It's not supposed to be funny at all. I love you. I love you. I love you," he recited blithely in a teasing sing-song manner, his warm smile growing wider. "You know something. I bet if I say it enough, you'll start believing me. And maybe you'll start saying the same."

He might be making fun of me but I figured he might as well have the truth. After all, who was I kidding. I'd always maintained that sex should only be between two adults who clearly cared for each other and to do otherwise would cheapen it. The man knew that and he probably knew I wouldn't sleep with him if I hadn't cared for him.

Putting down my half-eaten waffle, I decided to tell it to him straight. "You don't have to say it anymore. I love you all right! I've loved you for a long time now. Probably since the first time I saw your cute ass down the hallway. I love you so much I could probably burst. Are you satisfied now?"

I don't think I've ever seen that smile on his face before. It was as if someone had just told him he'd won the damned lottery. "I already know that. Once I got over being utterly blind, deaf and stupid, I realized that you loved me."

The warmth in that smile, the glow in his eyes, staggered me and I hastily looked away, afraid to meet his gaze. "So now that you've dragged that confession out of me, counselor, stop bugging me!" Stuffing the waffle into my mouth, I snatched up the papers and prepared to leave.

"Leaving so soon?" As I made a move to leave the table, he quickly caught my hand. "Now that I've got you, babe, I'm not letting you go that easily."

Knowing it was essentially futile, I didn't try to struggle this time. "You don't really love me, Paul. You're under the spell of some bizarre hallucinogen. Breaking up with the heavenly Angela must have also addled your brain some. Take it from a professional, go take a break, do something incredibly macho, full of testosterone and heterosexual - go watch some football or something - and then go to bed. Give your mind some time to rest. You'll feel better later."

My armchair diagnosis had him laughing out loud. "God, you are one stubborn bastard. I thought that telling you would solve everything. I never counted on this. I should have guessed that you'd be as perverse about this too."

"Yeah, perverse old me," I muttered. Everything I said didn't seem to have an effect on the smiling man in front of me. Seeing that he was about to say something, I cut him off. "I'm already late for work. We'll talk later, okay."

The look on my face gave him pause and he quietened down with a near exasperated sigh. "All right. We'll talk later. But it still won't change my feelings for you."

As I started up the stairs to my room, he came over and stood at the bottom holding on to the banister, shaking his head. "Damn, mother always said I'd regret using my looks to charm people, that I'd get my come-uppance one day when I finally fell in love. God, she is always right! I fall in love and the man thinks I'm doing drugs!"

With that, he went into another uncontrollable paroxysm of laughter which annoyed me further so I took myself off into the room to change.

Looking around for tall, dark, handsome men who could waylay me on the way to work, I quickly made my way downstairs with my briefcase in tow. Knowing how stubborn the man was, I doubt he'd let me go without at least making some kind of appearance at the door. As I usually left later for work, I figured he wouldn't be able to catch me on my way out.

I was wrong. Standing silently at the door with a disapproving frown was the man I'd been trying to avoid. A tall, broad, immovable man. Talk about an impassable barrier. "You're not sneaking off on me, Adam Sung."

Obviously having broken off while changing to catch me, he was wearing tan cotton slacks and his maroon red Oxford shirt was unbuttoned and hanging open revealing his pecs and his amazing washboard abs. My hands itched to touch him so I stubbornly shoved them into my pants.

The quick movement hadn't escaped his notice and he smiled. "You know, you are allowed to look and touch now."

The man certainly wasn't this witty when he wasn't trying to be gay. "Very funny, Donovan."

"I try my best." He answered with a quick bow.

As I made a move to leave, he leaned forward and shut the door. "Look, I know this came as a surprise to you. Believe me, I took two weeks to get over the surprise too. I could have eased you into the subject but I just couldn't wait. We've already waited for so many years. Why wait any longer?"

As usual, he made everything sound so dry and logical. I was starting to hate lawyers. Especially handsome ones with great suits.

"This sudden change of heart is giving me... I need some time to think things straight." The irony of thinking straight made both of us smile. "You know what I mean, Paul."

"I've never straight out lied to you about anything, Adam, and you know it."

I acknowledged the truth of this with a nod. "No, you have never lied to me."

"Then believe me when I say this." He pulled me gently into his arms and I let him. "I love you, Adam Sung."

I was still in a daze when I left for work. Partly from his heated goodbye kiss. Could that be called a kiss? It was practically sex - only without the penetration. Although his hot, probing tongue did a pretty good attempt.

Shaking my head to dismiss that erotic thought, I tried to concentrate on the problem at hand. There seemed to be some kind of numbing fugue coming over my mind and I could barely think. All I could see was Paul's handsome face as he whispered those words. Three words and it meant the world to me.

How could I tell him my fears? I had waited so long for such an... unbelievable thing to happen. I had hoped and dreamed but never imagined that such an impossibility could happen. Imagine waking up to find that your wildest dreams had suddenly come true. I just didn't know if I could handle it if he suddenly up and changed his mind again! What if he suddenly woke up and decided that he wasn't trying to be gay anymore? As melodramatic as it may sound, that might kill me. And yes, even with his flaws, I loved him. I even loved him for trying to act dumb to annoy me at times, occasionally being a total slob and for being a stubborn, persistent SOB. Yeah, warts and all.

Wouldn't Charlie love to hear this latest development in my life... The turbulent lifes and times of Adam Sung.

As I checked my pocket for my keys, a piece of paper fell out and I bent down to pick it up. Paul's neat, well-rounded writing was obvious - a far cry from my own impatient scrawl - and I read it which made me smile.

Stop doubting me. I love you. See you tonight.

I smiled and folded the paper neatly and put it next to my heart. Who knows. Maybe I was starting to believe him.


  1. What a great story. I know it was beyond belief, but isn't that the point. Sometime somewhere we may get what we want; what a shame to miss out because we refuse to believe that it's true. I find myself caring about Adam and Paul, and what happens to them. Pretty good job for one short story!

  2. I love you, Paul!

    Thanks for this wonderful story.

  3. im smiling all the way reading this. one word - BRAVO!

  4. this is such an amazing piece of bedtime story (:

  5. Hi.
    love this story ^_^

  6. You are a very talented writer! I loved it! Don't stop writing.

  7. Paul u named the hottie paul. LOL


  8. what a story and to think I skipped going to the sauna tonite just to read this piece of lit. haha, there's a hole in my gaping heart/life... thank god it wasn't spent in a sauna but at this literature...only time will tell if I might meet someone (new)... sigh.