Rent
by Taran Geary

 

Chapter Three: Choices

Mick opened his eyes; shit that was a weird dream. He blinked in the weak winter sunlight that strained to shine in through the window.  He looked at Shaun who was still sound asleep and he decided not to disturb him because he looked so peaceful and lovely. Lovely? Did he just say he thought Shaun looked lovely? He shook his head and put his strange phrase down to his still being half asleep and he thought no more about it.

He stuck an arm out from under the covers to test the temperature; it felt warm so Mick swung his legs out and sat on the edge of the bed. He stretched and yawned, farted and scratched his balls. He felt much better than he had for a long time- in fact he felt so well that he realised that an early morning stiffie was in urgent need of attention. So, making sure not to disturb Shaun, he went to the door and opened it slowly, he trotted across the lobby to the bathroom and he stood over the pan. He leaned on the wall with his right hand and started the procedure vigorously with his left. God, this feels good, he thought and very soon his orgasm swept over him and he unloaded his seed onto the porcelain.

“Fuck!”, he hissed under his breath as the final aftershock subsided. He couldn’t remember the last time he’d had a wank just for the fun of it; usually it was a performance for some leering punter or he was being sucked off by some old git slobbering all over him. But this one had felt so good. One thing he didn’t understand was why, during the procedure, visions of the sleeping Shaun kept floating through his mind. He shrugged his shoulders, he’d been ill, it didn’t matter.

He had a slight sore throat and his nose was blocked and his mouth felt like the inside of somebody’s trainer but the sickness of yesterday had subsided completely and he’d just had a fantastic wank; he felt on top of the world.

He decided to face the day.

Still dressed in only a pair of Sam’s boxers, he went through the double doors and into the big lounge. Sam was sitting at his desk with his back to the room; he turned around when he heard the door.

“Good morning, are you feeling better?”

“Mornin’, yeh I feel alright.”

“Good, where’s Shaun?”

“Still sleepin’.”

Your clothes are all washed. But if you want ‘em ironed you’ll have to do it yourself. I don’t do ironing. Help yourself to some breakfast. There’s plenty there.”

Without a word, Mick left the room but very soon he returned, still undressed, and with what Sam assumed was a typical teenager’s breakfast: Coffee, toast, Coca Cola and chocolate.  He sat down on the plush leather sofa threw a leg up on to the arm and started fiddling with the many remote controls that lay on the table.

“How do you turn the telly on?”

Sam got up and walked over to Mick; he couldn’t help but notice that Mick was sitting in a very provocative way; in fact Sam could see right up the leg of his boxers- and Mick knew it.

“Don’t sit like that, Fishy, please. I don’t want business with you.”

“Why not, don’t you like me?”

“As a matter of fact I like you very much-but not in that way.”

Mick looked at Sam quizzically as Sam ran through the workings of his elaborate television set up. Mick was highly suspicious of Sam. Nearly all – no, absolutely all – the adults he’d known had been bastards. Why should this one be any different? Mick had expected to feel an exploring hand while he slept but to the best of his knowledge none had come. Sam had always been ok, he had to admit; he had given him food and drink when he had been hungry. Mick also knew that he didn’t do it for everyone and as far as he knew he only did it for himself and Shaun and Shaun had introduced him to Sam in the first place. So was there something Shaun wasn’t telling him? Was he being groomed for something else?

No, he couldn’t believe that Shaun would knowingly set him up for something like that. They had been through too much together and Shaun didn’t have a mean bone in his body.

As Mick watched some bland daytime TV programme, Sam busied himself with his paperwork. No one spoke for a good ten minutes finally Mick spoke:

“Sam, what’s your angle?”

“Sorry?”

“What are you up to? Why are we here? You say you don’t want to fuck us; so why the fuck are we here?”

“I like your directness, I must say. Look, you can go if you want to, you’re not a prisoner here, you’re here because I wanted to help you. You can stay as long as you want or you can go. The choice, ultimately, is yours.”

“But you are queer, yeh?”

“Yes, I’m gay. Is that a problem?

“No, but it could be.”

“Why, what do you think I’m going to do? Hang on; do you think I want to rape you or something?” Sam was horrified at the suggestion.

“You might, you wouldn’t be the first.”

“You’ve been raped?” Sam was even more horrified.

“Yeh, a while ago now; I survived.”

“Good god, you poor old boy, who was it?”

“I really don’t want to talk about it, ok?”

“Yes of course, I’m sorry,” there was a pause. “I’m going to make myself a coffee. Do you want another one?”

“I’ll make it,” Mick jumped up. “How do you have it?”

“Black and strong,” Sam replied.

“Ah, just like your men, eh?” Mick winked at Sam and started to walk out of the room.

Sam smiled and returned to his desk and his paperwork; his mind reeling with the thought that someone, some bastard, could rape a boy like Fishy.

Time ticked by and Mick hadn’t reappeared.

“He’s gone,” Sam thought aloud; “didn’t even say goodbye or even thank you. I bet he’s nicked everything that’s not nailed down”

Sam got up to make his coffee when the door opened and Mick came in with two cups of coffee. He was wearing his newly ironed clothes and with his blond hair combed and styled he looked very handsome.

“I thought you’d gone,” Sam said relief showing clearly in his voice.

“Thought about it, but it’s cold and wet out there and I wouldn’t leave Shaun.”

“I don’t expect you want to hear this, but I’m glad you stayed.”

Mick didn’t know what to say so he changed the subject.

“Can I have a look at your books?”

“Sure, help yourself.” Mick started looking through the bookshelves sometimes pulling a volume out and leafing through it before returning it. Sam went back to his paperwork and he heard Mick take a volume over to the sofa where he sat reading through it.

Sam finally finished his work and he sat up straight and yawned and stretched. He looked at the clock and it was two pm.

“I guess I’d better see about getting some food ready for tonight.” He said to Mick.

“What are you having?”

“Aren’t you staying?” Sam felt a pang of disappointment.

“Am I invited?”

“Of course you are! You and Shaun; I thought I’d get some beef and do a nice roast and we can all have a meal together.”

“Sounds nice; But just one thing.”

“Go On.”

“Let me cook it.”

“Really?”

“Yeh, I love cooking, it was the only thing I enjoyed at school. I used to dream of being a chef.”

“You still could be.”

“Yeh,” Mick snorted. “Who’s gonna employ me?

“Ok chef, you show me what you can do.”

“Really? You’re gonna let me?”

“Yeh, why not?”

“Wow, thanks mate! I’ll go and get lazy arse up and we’ll go shopping.”

Mick didn’t need to get Shaun up because he appeared bleary eyed at the door. Mick pounced on him to get himself washed and dressed.

***

“Come on, sleepy bollocks, we’re going shopping!”

“Wot?”

“Come on, I’m cooking the dinner tonight and we’ve got to go shopping!”

“You what? Are you serious?”

“Cause I am; come on, get dressed.”

Shaun just grunted, turned on his heel and left the room. They heard him enter the bathroom and the shower start to run.

Mick and Sam just looked at each other without saying a word. Sam broke the tension first:

“Can I call you Mick now instead of Fishy?”

“You can call me Knobhead if you want to.”

“Why would I want to?”

Mick went quiet and looked at the floor before mumbling “Dunno; call me Mick if you want.”

They heard Shaun leave the bathroom and go into the bedroom, Mick went to join him. He sat on the “spare” bed; Shaun sat on the one they had shared.

“What do you want to do? Mick asked.

“I thought we were going shopping.”

“No; I mean about stopping here.”

Shaun pondered for a few moments; “Do you want to go back on the streets?”

“Well, no, but this is all so weird. What does he want from us?”

“Well you’re cooking his dinner; perhaps he wants a couple of houseboys. But I don’t think so; I think he’s just lonely and wants our company.”

“No,” Mick corrected him. “I’m cooking our dinner- for the three of us. And you know that he’s queer, don’t you?”

“How do you know?”

“I asked him and he told me”.

“Never mind, a lot of people are. It doesn’t automatically make him like Roger, you know.”

Shaun stood up and made some final adjustments to his clothing before declaring himself ready to go out. They went back to the lounge where Sam was watching TV

“I’ll need some money, Mick said. “About £20 should do it.”

Sam got his wallet out and took some notes out; he hesitated as he gave them to Mick.

“Don’t you trust me?” Mick grinned.

“About as much as you trust me.” Sam replied.

Mick looked at the floor, “Ok”, he said, “Point taken.”

The boys left the flat and Shaun steered them to the back of the building where the vent blew its greasy heat over sleeping street boys.

“What do you prefer?” Shaun asked his friend. “This or that nice warm bed upstairs; Clean clothes and hot water or washing in the supermarket toilets? Do you really want to go back to hanging around the canal trying to pick up a complete stranger who humps into you so hard you want to throw up? Who then pumps his beans onto your face and tries to get it in your mouth?”

Mick visibly shuddered. He had never seen the usually easy going Shaun so passionate.

“I think Sam is offering us e a chance to break out of this crap. I want to go for it. I like sleeping in a nice bed at night, I like being clean, I like clean clothes. I say we should stay and see how it goes. He might not want us after today and might all go shitshaped; but I want to try and see if he’s going to offer us a home and a life that’s worth living. You know what’ll happen to us if we stay on the street. Dead or prison; I don’t fancy either of em much; so I say we take the plunge”

Mick was deep in thought and after a long pause he said “Ok, let’s see what happens. But any funny business and I’m gone.”

Shaun hugged Mick and the two friends headed off for the shops. They chatted about this and that. They wondered what had become of the young boy they had seen with Roger; was his name Pavel? They both agreed that he was a “poor little bastard” and they hoped he had been able to get away before Roger and his friends had hurt him too badly. They had both experienced was Roger was capable of.

“Shaun, are you queer?” Mick asked out of the blue. Shaun stopped dead in his tracks and looked sideways at his friend.

“I don’t know,” Shaun replied, picking his words carefully. “I haven’t really made up my mind yet. Does it matter?”

“No, not really, I just like to know where I stand.”

“What about you?” Shaun asked.

“No, I’m straight.” Mick replied.

“Ok,” Shaun replied but couldn’t help letting a tinge of disappointment show in his voice…

 

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