The party at Frank’s house was billed as a pool party and barbecue, so I’d certainly want to bring a bathing suit, but I wasn’t sure if I should just wear it there with a t-shirt and flip-flops. Since Frank mentioned playing games, I decided it would be better to wear shorts and a t-shirt and change into my swimsuit once there.
It would’ve been nice if I could’ve driven myself to the party, but I did the next best thing. I drove there with Fran in the car, and then she drove the car home. Frank lived in a newer, affluent subdivision on the western edge of greater Omaha in the town of Elkhorn. Some of the developments we passed by were even brand new, with houses still being built. Frank’s neighborhood was more established, with a few larger, mature trees. Unfortunately, Elkhorn was one of the hardest hit neighborhoods during the flooding in March, with a lot of houses suffering extensive damage. I didn’t begin working with Frank until months later, and if Frank’s house had experienced any damage, he’d never mentioned it. There certainly was no evidence of damage now. The houses were large, sprawling tract houses on large lots, and the sound of splashing water I heard as I approached bespoke the presence of a pool in back. I’d heard the term ‘McMansion’, and for this place it sure seemed to fit.
As I walked up to the front door, it opened right in front of me before I had a chance to ring the bell or knock. Standing in the doorway was Shaun, wearing his copper-colored speedos. Oh, my-god, he was gorgeous. “Hey, J.J.” he greeted me. “Welcome to our humble home —”
“It doesn’t look all that humble to me,” I replied with a sly smile.
“Yeah, it’s really over the top, I know,” Shaun said. “I’m afraid the place in Seattle isn’t much better, but Dad likes to show off, and of course there’s the matter of the school district. We knew we’d be here at least a couple of years right when I’m finishing high school, so the school district matters. He looked up all the schools in Omaha and Elkhorn South was rated A+. Anyway, why don’t you come in, and you can get into your swimwear?”
Shaun turned around and led me into the house, and I followed. He led me into a bedroom and closed and locked the door behind him. He locked it with both of us in the room. Why? Looking around, it was pretty clear that this was Shaun’s bedroom. There were a few basketball trophies and a soccer trophy on a shelf, as well as a high-school Challenge of the Minds trophy. The bed was a bit messy but with a bedspread thrown over it. There were some science-fair awards on the wall and a debate-championship award. Shaun was no slouch. I was impressed.
“I’d rather be in a real community,” he continued, “where you can walk or bike to shops, restaurants, movies and drug dealers.” I couldn’t help it when my mouth dropped open. “I was totally joking about that last item. I’ve never even tried drugs, nor do I want to.
“I’ve been taking driver’s ed after work this summer, so I’ll have way more mobility when I get my license a few months after I turn sixteen in October,” he continued. “I think I heard you saying you did, too, so at least we’ll be able to drive places. Not to brag, but Dad’s getting me an Audi e-tron for my birthday. I definitely wanted an EV, and the Audi’s based on —”
“The Tesla X,” I interrupted.
“You’re familiar with it?” Shaun asked.
“My foster dad and I went to look at one,” I replied. “It was the only car I couldn’t test drive, ’cause the dealer wouldn’t let us drive it on our own. It was more car than I need right now anyway, and the price tag’s too rich, especially since I’m paying for it myself. I ordered a Tesla Model 3, which is rich enough, especially the performance model with the red exterior and white interior.”
“That’s a nice car, and you ordered it just the way I would’ve,” Shaun related. “Did you get the self-driving option?”
“You know, I didn’t even consider it,” I replied. “It comes with autopilot as standard, and I could almost see letting it take the wheel on a cross-country trip, but even then, it’s too easy to be lulled into complacency or to just fall asleep. Eight-grand extra is probably a bargain for a self-driving car, but I’m not sure I’m ready to trust it yet.”
“Can you add it later?” Shaun asked.
“Not sure,” I replied. “It’s not just a matter of software. I think it involves adding a new computer. Would you trust it to drive your kid brother to school? I doubt it. So, for me, it’s not yet worth the investment.”
Nodding his head, he asked, “When do you turn sixteen?”
“Actually, I’m already sixteen, and Applazon’s sponsoring a hardship application so I can get my license right away,” I replied. “You know, that’s a shame about not having stuff nearby. I live in Bellevue ’cause my foster dad’s a deputy director of Strat Com at Offutt. The nice thing about Bellevue is we live in a secluded neighborhood with mature trees – actually a whole forest – yet I can walk to everything. I have a choice of restaurants, stores and even the high school, all within a half-hour walking distance.”
“That must be nice,” Shaun responded, “but the schools aren’t good enough to satisfy Dad. They’re still good, but Bellevue East is rated a B, so it’s not for me, according to my father.”
“I’m curious, did you guys get any flooding?” I asked.
“Yeah, it was a real mess,” Shaun related. “The Elkhorn River flowed through the whole neighborhood and even damaged the high school, which was supposed to be our place to shelter. We ended up staying in a hotel for a month while the landlord repaired the damage.”
“You don’t own this house?” I asked.
“For only two years, what would be the point?” Shaun replied. “Besides, Applazon pays for it. Anyway, the floodwaters completely filled the basement, and there was about an eighth of an inch of water on the first floor. All the flooring had to be replaced, but at least the drywall was okay. Thankfully, none of the furniture was damaged. The basement was finished, however, with a rec room, a workshop and the laundry. All of that had to be torn out, and the landlord decided not to replace any of it; instead, he reduced our rent. He moved the laundry upstairs into the kitchen pantry. He had to rip out all the electrical wiring and the ductwork and replace it, and he had to replace the furnace. He had to replace the mechanicals for the pool, too.”
“Damn, that sounds like it was a disaster,” I replied.
“No, a disaster would have been if the walls had to be torn out and rebuilt and if all the furniture had to be thrown out and replaced,” Shaun countered. “We were lucky. Next time, the people living here might not be, but by then Applazon will have sent us to our next assignment.”
Shaun had a number of posters on the wall, including a shirtless poster of Justin Bieber when he still was cute and a poster of Troye Sivan, a well-known gay musician. It was enough to give me hope, but then I couldn’t do anything with him anyway… maybe. There was a poster from the Broadway musical Hamilton and a Star Wars: The Last Jedi movie poster. There were also posters of Nora Jones and Diana Krall, two well-known jazz vocalists.
“So yeah, this is my room,” Shaun acknowledged. “Most of my books are back in Seattle, but I still read a lot, but on my e-book reader. I read a lot of sci-fi, and you probably noticed that I’m a big Star Wars fan.”
“Me, too,” I chimed in.
“That’s great,” he responded. “Maybe later we can watch something together, but first I hafta mingle. At least now there’s someone my own age to hang out with. That makes all the difference.” I know I blushed, and he smiled a sort of half-smirk in response. “Let’s get you undressed.”
“You want to undress me?” I asked with a smirk of my own. Two could play this game.
“If you need my help,” he replied.
“Jerk,” I responded.
“I’ll get you for that later,” Shaun replied. “Now get into your swimwear.”
“Are you gonna watch or something?” I asked when it became obvious he wasn’t leaving.
“Why not?” he asked. “You watch me enough at work.” Oh, shit!
“I guess I have been doing that,” I agreed. “I’m sorry if it bothers you. You’re a good-looking guy.”
“So are you,” Shaun replied. “Your clothes?” Did that mean what I thought it meant? Oh, well, he wasn’t going anywhere, so I might as well give him a show.
I reached for the hem of my shirt and slowly lifted it up and very slowly pulled it over my head and off my body, throwing it onto his head. Shaun pulled my shirt off his head and dropped it onto the floor and said, “Now, who’s the jerk?” but he was smiling.
I toed off my sneakers and pulled off the no-show socks, placing them inside my sneakers. I pulled my belt out and dropped it onto the floor. I unsnapped my shorts, unzipped the zipper oh-so-very-slowly and let my shorts drop to the floor, stepping out of them. Finally, I slowly lowered one side of my boxer briefs, then the other until the few wisps of pubes I had were visible, then the base of my dick, and finally I lowered them the rest of the way and let them fall to the floor, stepping out of them.
It was as I was standing naked in front of Shaun, perhaps just a foot or two away from him, when it suddenly dawned on me that I didn’t know where my backpack was. Then it dawned on me. “Oh, fuck!”
“What is it, J.J.?” Shaun asked with what appeared to be genuine concern.
“My swimsuit is in my backpack, along with a towel, flip-flops and sunscreen,” I replied.
“So where is your backpack?” he asked.
“In my foster mom’s car – on its way back to Bellevue,” I answered.
“That’s not a problem, J.J.,” Shaun responded with sincerity. “As you know, I have plenty of extra pairs. Do you have a favorite?”
“But they’re speedos!” I exclaimed.
“So?” Shaun replied. “I bet you’ll look fantastic in speedos. Let’s try the red pair,” he suggested as he rummaged around in his dresser and pulled the red speedos out of one of the drawers. “You’ll look hot in these.”
“As if,” I responded.
“Don’t sell yourself short, J.J.” Shaun countered as he closed the distance between us, placing his hand on my bare shoulder. I became hard, instantly. Letting his hand slide off my shoulder and onto my chest, he added, “Gonna have trouble getting your speedos on over that. Let’s apply some sunscreen to both of us, and then we’ll figure out what to do.” Oh, my god. Was he saying what I thought he was saying?
Grabbing a bottle of sunscreen, he squirted some into my hands, I started applying it to my face and arms while he applied it to my back, thighs and ass. I held out my hands, and he gave me more to apply to my torso, thighs, legs and feet.
“Don’t forget to apply it to your groin and even the sides of your balls, J.J.” He suggested. “With speedos you can get burned in unusual places. Would you mind doin’ me?”
“You want me to do you?” I asked in surprise, not that I’d mind doing him at all. The thought of that didn’t help my boner go down, though.
“That’s not what I meant,” he replied. “Not while we have guests, and besides, it would be awkward. However, I’d appreciate it if you’d apply sunscreen to my back and rear, please.” I’d love to. He certainly seemed to imply he was gay, but it really would be awkward… I thought.
Shaun pulled off his speedos, and I returned the favor. As beautiful as he was in speedos, he looked even better without. We were both hard by the time I finished applying sunscreen to his butt. Frank took care of the problem for us, though, when he knocked on the door and asked, “Shaun, you in there? I need you to help with the guests.” We had no trouble getting our speedos on after that.
“Is it just you and your dad?” I asked.
“I have a younger sister, but she lives with my bitch of a mother,” he answered. “In answer to the unasked question, Mom cheated with Dad’s boss. I don’t mind that she’s a lesbian, but with his boss?”
“Shaun!” Frank shouted from outside.
“Coming, Dad,” Shaun shouted back.
I couldn’t help but ask with a smirk, “Do you always announce when —”
“Don’t go there,” Shaun interrupted. “I don’t even want to think of it. Not while we’re wearing speedos. We’d better get out there in any case.” Shaun grabbed my hand and practically dragged me outside with him.
We we’re still holding hands when Frank spotted us and said, “Hi, J.J., welcome to our house. There’s lots of beer and plenty of food. Your boyfriend can show you around. The way you two have been drooling over each other all summer, I don’t think anyone will be surprised.”
“We’re not —” Shaun started to object, but then interrupted himself and asked, “You don’t care if I’m gay?”
“Why should I care?” Frank countered. “I mean, you know I love you more than anything, even work, and your room isn’t exactly subtle.”
“But two of my posters are of women,” Shaun pointed out.
Laughing, I responded, “Nora Jones and Diana Krall? It might’ve as well been Judy Garland and Barbara Streisand.” Then turning back to Frank, I asked, “Shaun’s been drooling over me?”
“All the time,” he answered. “It’s pathetic. And if you’re worried about your relationship being inappropriate, don’t. I might be in charge, but I’m not your boss. You answer to Moorthy. If you want to be boyfriends, you have my condolences. You have been warned. Love’s a bitch.
“Now go mingle and enjoy yourselves while I do the same,” he added, and then he was off, leaving us standing there, still holding hands.
“Boyfriends?” I asked Shaun.
“I dunno,” he responded. “You ever have one before?”
“Once, and that was a case of love at first sight,” I answered. “I knew from the moment I met Greg that he was special, and I fell head over heels for him, but I was running away from home, and he lived close enough for me to fear bein’ sent back to my abusing father. There are still times I wonder what might have been. Since then, I’ve had three close friends, what you might call fuck buddies, including one of my foster brothers here, but then his girlfriend started putting out and that was the end of that. I guess that’s why I’m so horny all the time. How about you?”
“I think horniness is a perpetual state in teenagers,” Shaun said, and we both laughed. “Look, why don’t we go sit down somewhere – there are a few tables for two – and I can tell you my story. Let’s first grab some of this amazing food and get a couple of beers.”
“I thought I heard your father mention beer,” I replied. “He lets you drink beer?”
With a snort, Shaun said, “He seems to think teenage drinking’s a rite of passage. As long as I don’t get caught driving drunk, he turns a blind eye. There’s a lot of beer at some of the high school parties, sometimes even a keg, but I try to avoid parties like that. Pot, too; I tried it once and have no interest in smoking it again. You don’t even feel anything until you’re stoned, and then reality is so fucked up, you don’t know what’s real. Not hallucinations like you hear about with acid, but you can’t trust your perceptions of space and time. I stay away from pot.”
“Sounds like you’re a party animal,” I replied.
Throwing his head back and laughing, he responded, “Hardly, but I’ve had a little experience. I’m not one of those guys who seeks out parties and crashes them. The social circles around here make it pretty hard to avoid them, though, and they all tend to be drinking orgies. I’ve been drunk once, and that was more than enough for me. I’ve never felt so sick in my life. A couple of beers at a barbecue are fine, but more than that is asking for trouble.
“So, shall we grab some food and beer?”
“Sure,” I replied, then followed Shaun as he led me toward the food, still holding my hand. For the first time I took note of what was around me. This wasn’t some backyard pool party with the host grilling hamburgers and hot dogs. This was a catered office party with a buffet line and an open bar. There was a guy carving meat, and there were servers along the line, serving the guests, I guess so we wouldn’t have to touch the serving utensils. Shaun and I each grabbed a plate, silverware and napkins and went through the line, piling roast beef, roast turkey breast and salmon with Hollandaise sauce on top of each other, and adding a baked potato with sour cream and bacon bits, creamed spinach and green beans with mushrooms on the side. There was a separate table with desserts, but I didn’t even want to look at that for now.
We approached the open bar, which had multiple, expensive-looking bottles of wine and liquor, and Shaun asked, “What do you have on tap?”
“I have Michelob, Bud Lite and Beck’s Reserve,” the man replied.
“Definitely, the Beck’s Reserve,” Shaun answered.
It was a beer I’d never heard of let alone tasted, but Shaun seemed so certain that I said, “I’ll have the same.” I was shocked when I saw that it was dark amber, but I was always game to try new things. Shaun led us to a small table with two chairs in the back of the yard, kind of away from the rest of them, back by the trees, and we sat down across from each other.
Shaun took a sip of his beer, so I did the same. It was stronger and more bitter than the other beers I’d tasted, but it had a rich flavor that I found irresistible. No wonder Shaun liked it.
“So, I never really thought of myself as gay before,” Shaun began. “I’ve never really dated before, either, so my sexuality wasn’t something I really thought much about. I knew that I found some boys attractive and some girls, too, but I never gave it much thought that when I jerk off, it’s mostly thinking about boys. It wasn’t until I caught you staring at me all the time that I thought about it, and realized I was staring at you, too.”
Taking a large swallow of his beer, Shaun continued, “When you talk about casual sex, I just can’t relate to that. I know a lot of boys experiment, and I did a bit when I was younger but never really thought about it. I’m not a virgin, but I’ve never had a boyfriend or a girlfriend before. Maybe it’s because we were always moving around. Maybe it’s because Mom was so distant, and Dad was busy with work. It was just my sister and me and our nanny, and I was alone with my books. I jack off a lot, sometimes four or five times a day. I’ve been doin’ it since I was like six or seven. That’s when I discovered gay porn, but I never thought of myself as gay.”
“You jacked off in elementary school?” I asked in disbelief. “How did you get away with it? Did you ask for permission to use the boys’ room?”
“Back then it only once or twice in a day. It wasn’t until the fifth grade that I even thought of doin’ it during the day, but even then it was only at home. Anyway, when I got to middle school and then high school, I spent a lot of time in the library —”
“So’d I,” I interrupted.
“Jerkin’ off?” he asked in surprise.
“No, I never even thought to jerk off at school,” I replied. Taking a gulp of my beer, I went on, “My problem was my dad back then. He abused me physically and mentally but most of all, sexually. He made me jerk him from when I could get my hands around him, and he made me blow him from when I could get the head in my mouth. He made me give him blowjobs every day, sometimes multiple times a day. I’ve never told anyone about this because I always felt shame that I got off, but he liked to blow me, too. I couldn’t squirt yet, but I had orgasms.”
“Fuck,” Shaun exclaimed quietly. “I think I woulda killed him if it were me. I don’t know how you put up with it all those years.” Even though the higher-ups at Applazon already knew, I wasn’t quite ready to trust Shaun with my secret. I wasn’t really sure why, but something inside of me told me to exercise caution.
“I guess that now you’d say I’m a slut,” I went on, taking another sip of my beer.
“What makes you say that?” Shaun reacted, taking a sip of his own. “From what you told me, you were sexually abused by your old man, then you ran away from home, fell in love with a boy but couldn’t stick around, and you’ve had a series of steady sexual relationships ever since but never with more than one guy at a time; they just weren’t boyfriend material.”
“Or in the case of the last guy, he was definitely boyfriend material, but he wasn’t gay,” I clarified.
“I’d love to have what you’ve had,” Shaun responded. “The problem is that I’m a super-geek school nerd who loves the kinds of music kids don’t listen to and spends all his time reading books. Add to that that we move around a lot, and I’m cripplingly shy —”
“You’re not shy!” I practically screamed. The notion was absurd.
“Yeah, I am,” Shaun countered. “Especially when you first came to the lab. You’re a perfect ten if there ever was one —” I couldn’t help but scoff at that “—and being around you was driving me insane. It couldn’t go on that way, so I put on a persona and pretended to be someone I’m not. Stick around and you’ll see the real me,” he explained, taking another drink of beer.
“So far, everything I’ve seen tells me that the real you is even better than the persona you created,” I replied. “I’ll forgive you the Justin Bieber poster —”
“It’s not on my wall because of his music,” Shaun interrupted.
“Yeah, he used to be cute as hell, like when he was fifteen,” I agreed. “Since then, he’s shown how little talent he really has and how ugly he is inside and out,” I added.
“Troye Sivan, though, is cool,” I continued. “His last album wasn’t as good as his earlier ones, but it took guts to come out when he did. Norah Jones just released a new album, Begin Again. I liked her last one, Day Breaks, a lot better. Diana Krall is one of the greatest jazz vocalists of all time but in a different way from the likes of Ella Fitzgerald. She makes jazz more accessible for today’s audience. Same for Gregory Porter. Of course, there are the great jazz instrumentalists, like John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Thelonious Monk and Bill Evans or the more contemporary ones like Keith Jarret, Joshua Redman and GoGo Penguin.”
“Obviously, you’re a man of exceptional taste,” Shaun responded. “We’ll hafta compare notes.” Then after a brief pause, he suggested, “Um, maybe we should eat this before the food gets cold and the beer gets warm?”
“Good idea,” I agreed. Looking down at the table, I noted for the first time that the oversize plate was made of clear polystyrene rather than paper or polystyrene foam. The utensils were plastic but much thicker, heavier and larger than the usual disposable stuff and coated in evaporated metal to give the appearance of real stainless. I cut into the roast beef, which was rare but not too rare, and it was so tender, my knife sliced through it without trying. It was delicious. The turkey tasted fresh as did the salmon, and the Hollandaise sauce was exceptional. The vegetables were all excellent, too. The food was definitely not what I’d been expecting when I was invited to a barbecue.
“Obviously, we both share a love of music,” Shaun began. “We both seem to like jazz. I like classical: Bach, Beethoven, not so much Mozart.”
“Beethoven’s symphonies are epic,” I agreed. “The second movement of the Seventh is one of the most beautiful pieces ever written.”
“Agreed,” Shaun chimed in.
“It’s amazing that he was deaf when he wrote it,” I observed.
“You shitting me?” Shaun asked. “I didn’t know that. How’d he compose music if he couldn’t hear it?”
“He started losing his hearing in his twenties,” I explained, “probably from ear wax from what I’ve read. A lot of people didn’t know about cleaning it out back then, but like a lot of musicians, he didn’t need to hear his music with his ears. He could hear it in his mind.” Polishing off my plate of food, and drinking the last of my beer, I asked, “Did you want to get more food or beer?”
“There’s still the dessert table, but I wouldn’t mind a round of seconds first,” Shaun answered.
“I couldn’t agree more,” I chimed in. We got back up and made a return to the buffet line. I’d intended to get maybe half as much, but damned if I didn’t get another full plate. So’d Shaun, and we each got another Beck’s Reserve.
Back at our table and digging in, I asked, “If you could meet one-on-one with any composer or musician, past or present, currently living or otherwise, who would it be?”
Thinking for only a few seconds, Shaun answered, “That’s easy: Paul McCartney. Not that he’s my favorite musician, but he’s the most successful songwriter of all time, and his music has had far-reaching influence on all the music written for the last sixty years. John Lennon would be up there, too. How about you, J.J.?”
“For me, it’d be Frank Sinatra,” I replied. “He died long before we were born, yet his reputation looms larger than life. He’s had no equal in modern times, before or since. Maybe Barbara Streisand, but she’ll probably have to die first to become the legend that he’s become. I’d love to clear up some mysteries: why did Sinatra stop singing and go into acting, and how did he make his comeback, and was he really involved with the mob?”
“Do you play a musical instrument?” Shaun asked.
“If you saw the shack I lived in growing up, you wouldn’t ask,” I replied. “How about you?”
“I play the cello, actually,” Shaun answered.
“Really!” I exclaimed, “So does Darren, the boyfriend of my foster brother, Henry. You’re gonna be the next Yo-Yo Ma. Maybe you’ll record the Swine Rodeo as the successor to the Goat Rodeo Sessions.”
“Hardly,” Shaun responded. “I happen to love The Goat Rodeo albums, by the way. I usually don’t like country music all that much and definitely not bluegrass, but then I guess The Goat Rodeo is technically what they call newgrass.”
“Newgrass can refer to the use of contemporary instruments with traditional bluegrass music, as in the case of The Goat Rodeo or it can refer to the use of traditional bluegrass instruments with contemporary music, as in the case of the Punch Brothers,” I noted.
“You really know music,” Shaun responded. “What about pop music and rock or metal or hip hop and rap?”
“Well,” I began, “you need to keep in mind that the only music I heard growing up was what my daddy had playing on the radio when I rode shotgun in his pickup and what the school-bus driver played on the radio before I got a bicycle and rode my bike to school. Most of the time, that was country. Don’t get me wrong; I think Willie Nelson’s Stardust is one of the great albums of all time, but I’m no fan of country. Then, when I got to high school at the age of eleven, I started spending time in the school library, and I discovered the broader world of music thanks to the AV carrels which gave me access. I had a lot of catching up to do, and I spent most of it listening to classical music and jazz.
“I did listen to classic rock, and there’s no doubt that the Beatles changed the course of music forever. I like the Beatles. The Stones are a close second. The Who, Pink Floyd, Fleetwood Mac, the Eagles, Elton John, Simon and Garfunkel, Billy Joel, Springsteen, Moody Blues… I could go on and on. Oh, and Mellencamp. I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention Indiana’s favorite son, who grew up in the next town over. I’m hard-pressed to find any group that arose after the 1980s that can hold a candle to those in terms of lasting significance.”
“You left out Bob Dylan; Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young; Sting; and the Police – and Steely Dan,” Shaun pointed out.
“Absolutely,” I agreed, “especially Steely Dan, one of the most under-appreciated bands of all time. Don Fagen was a true genius.”
“How about U2, Radiohead, Coldplay, Beck, Muse, the Black Keys, Imagine Dragons and Daft Punk?” Shaun asked.
“There are some really good alternative groups, but no standouts that can hold a candle to the classic rockers,” I countered. “Maybe Beck. Maybe Radiohead. Not that I’m a fan of techno or dance music, but I might give you Daft Punk if they’d followed up on their masterpiece, Random Access Memory, but then they called it quits. You picked some of the better ones.”
“Not a fan of rap or hip hop?” Shaun asked.
“Not at all,” I replied. “Some of it’s not half bad, but I wouldn’t choose to waste my inner-ear cilia listening to it.”
Laughing hysterically enough to attract attention, Shaun eventually got his laughter in control and responded, “Inner-ear cilia? Now I know I’m not the biggest geek that ever lived.”
“Guilty as charged,” I agreed.
“I’m not a fan, either,” Shaun countered, “but I have to admit that the music from Hamilton is exceptional, and the musical itself is one of the best I’ve ever seen.”
“I’ve not heard the music from Hamilton, and I’ve never had the opportunity to see a live play or musical, unless you consider the school plays we all used to put on for the parents,” I responded. “I’ll hafta take your word for it.”
“That’s too bad, J.J.,” Shaun replied. “We’re gonna hafta do something about that. My dad has always made sure I was exposed to culture, be it thought-provoking theater, Broadway musicals, symphony, opera and live jazz. There are some great museums in Omaha that you’ve probably never heard of; I’m gonna take you. Unfortunately, Broadway musicals come to either Omaha or Des Moines, but not both. I saw Hamilton when the Broadway tour was in Seattle in March last year. It’ll be in Des Moines next year in December. That’s about a two-hour drive from here, but at 140 miles, a little over half the range of my Audi e-tron.”
“My Model 3 has a range of nearly 300 miles, so we’re good to go,” I responded. “Maybe we could go together.”
“I’d like that very much,” Shaun replied. “By the way, I have the soundtrack on a high-res digital album. We have a great audiophile, home-theater setup. Maybe we could listen to it after the barbecue’s over. Maybe you could get permission to spend the night? It’s a Saturday night, so Dad’ll be hitting the singles bars trying to get lucky. We’ll have the place to ourselves.”
“At his age?” I couldn’t help but exclaim.
“He’s not that old, you know,” Shaun replied. “They have singles bars for people his age.”
“You’d really like to have me stay the night?” I asked.
“Can’t think of a better way to decide if I’m ready for my first boyfriend,” Shaun replied. “Assuming it’s mutual, that is.”
“When I left work yesterday, you were just a guy I couldn’t take my eyes off of,” I responded. “In the time we’ve spent together today, I think we’ve both learned more about each other, and, Shaun, there’s so much more depth to you than I could’ve ever imagined. Any pretty face can be a fuck buddy, but it takes depth and intelligence to be worthy of being a boyfriend.”
“That’s really sweet, J.J.,” Shaun replied. “Why don’t you see if you can stay the night?”
Disclaimer: This story is purely fictional and any resemblance of characters to real individuals is unintentional. Although it takes place in actual locations, in no way are any official policies, opinions or events inferred. Some characters may be underage and at times engage in homosexual acts. Anyone uncomfortable with this should not be reading the story, and the reader assumes responsibility for the legality of reading this type of material where they live. The author retains full copyright and permission must be obtained prior to duplication in any form.