by Adam Stweart
The weeks and months went by and Luke and Josh became busier and busier with the business. They had soon been going for a year and it had been extremely successful, far more so than Luke had imagined. They now had so many clients that they had taken on another IT engineer. He had qualified on the same course as Luke so by the time he joined LJ Associates he had a year’s commercial experience. He turned out to be brilliant and was soon taking on lots of new clients.
Josh also needed help with the office work so they decided it was time to rent a proper office where they could employ at least one other office person. They found a small office nearby and fitted it out. It was large enough to expand into and had a meeting room and a little kitchen. It was ideal so they hired someone to handle the phones and give general office assistance. Josh handled the recruitment and ended up short listing two people – one girl and a guy.
Luke and Josh interviewed them together and both performed well but the young guy had the edge. He was more IT literate and seemed more willing to be flexible. It also turned out that he was gay, so that helped!
He had just finished at his previous company who gave him a glowing reference when Josh phoned his manager. “Sorry to see him go” the manager said “but he needs more to challenge him”. The guy started the following week and within a short while he was already showing his worth. He was charming with clients and had a lovely smile which always gave Josh a lift when he saw him. He and Josh got on well so they made a good team.
The business continued to grow and with the extra staff it took the load off Luke and Josh. Another year went by and they were now well established with money in the bank and loans paid off. They still went to the bars and clubs but took life a bit easier. They were now in their mid twenties and successful business men. They had stopped doing porn work for Steve and going to mad orgies. Instead they enjoyed entertaining or being entertained by their circle of friends, although sexual encounters still occurred on occasions!
They both still enjoyed living in their flat and now that the business was no longer taking up space they had another bedroom for friends to stay. They invited Antonio and Robert for the weekend and they all had a very nice time together. Antonio continued to supply them with business contacts so they were more than happy to allow him to have his way with them!
When the business had been going for two years Luke decided to have a staff get-together. He and Luke decided on a meal for all of them at the restaurant at the top of the Oxo Tower. They hired one section of it for the seven of them and a great evening was had by all.
“Josh and I have an announcement to make” Luke said when they had finished the meal and were drinking coffee and brandy.
He duly announced that he and Josh were getting civil partnered and all were welcome to attend the ceremony which would be in three months time. There was a general cheer round the table and the couple were wished all the best. “That’s great news” Jake said and gave both Luke and Josh a hug and a kiss.
Luke’s parents were delighted when they heard the news and said they would certainly attend. Josh also invited his mum, his aunt and uncle who also said they would love to attend. They sat down and drew up the invitation list and it soon grew. Luke’s dad said he wanted to pay for it all so Luke and Josh let him do so. They hired a fancy venue where guests could stay if they wanted and it was a registered venue for civil partnership registration. The day came and Luke and Josh got themselves ready. They had bought themselves new suits and shirts for the occasion and looked each other up and down. “I still fancy you as much as I did when we first made love” Luke told Josh. “Don’t” Josh responded with a tear in his eye “you will have me crying my eyes out”. They kissed and told each other they loved each other. “Just as well” Luke laughed, “since you’re about to marry me”.
Their car arrived and they set off for the venue. Luke had specifically asked for a Bentley without Josh’s knowledge. When he saw the car he hugged Luke before they got in the back. The chauffer grinned and wished them every happiness together. When they arrived at the venue their guests were assembled in the foyer. A round of applause welcomed them. Josh kissed his mum and Luke kissed his parents. The Registrar invited the pair of them to join her for the preliminary interview before the actual ceremony. The guests took their places for the ceremony and soon Luke and Josh were walking down the aisle towards the front where the Registrar welcomed everyone and performed the legal ceremony. She finally announced them as Civil Partners and asked them to sign the registrar. Having done so, Gary and Antonio duly signed the register as their witnesses.
The celebrations then commenced and soon they were all sitting down for their meal. Speeches took place after this and both Gary and Antonio gave a glowing account of their friendship with the happy couple. Then Josh said a few words and by the time he had finished everyone had tears in their eyes. He explained how he had been thrown out of his home by his father and how Luke’s parents had taken him in to their home like a son. “I knew I loved Luke from the moment we first met at college” he told them, “From there on my love for him grew and grew”. Everyone, including Luke were dabbing their eyes. Josh sat down and for a moment there was silence. Suddenly everyone was standing and cheering Josh. He just sat and grinned.
It was Luke’s turn to say a few words. He stood and looked at the crowd in front of him.
“Well how do you follow that” Luke said. Everyone laughed. “Now you can see why I fell in love with him and want him as my partner. He is a very special person and always will be.” Everyone was standing again and cheering the pair of them. Finally Luke managed to thank all of them for coming and making it such a special day.
Although not planned, Luke’s dad stood up and asked for silence. “I feel I must just say on behalf of my wife and myself that not only do we know we have a very special son but also a very special son in law. Josh has always been a special part of our family and we know that his mother is also very proud of him. Let’s all raise our glasses and wish them both a long and happy life together.”
“Luke and Josh” the room roared.
They did live very happily together and as the years passed they seemed to get closer and closer. The business continued to expand and became so successful that they were made an offer by a much larger company that they could not refuse. Having made sure their staff would be protected and would continue as a unit they decided to accept the generous offer. They were therefore able to retire in their late forties with plenty of financial security for their future. Some friends had come and gone as they moved on but their love for each other and for life was never lost!
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