This is Part 3 of Chapter 30 in the "Queer Theories" series.
Go back to "Love Minus Zero -- Part 2" , the previous section.
The phone rang.
"Fuck! That's why I moved the damned phone OUT of the bedroom in the first place!"
"But I moved it back in so I could talk to you...."
"Don't answer it. Let it go to the machine."
We waited and the machine went into its song and dance. "This is Justin in the loft. Leave your message and I'll get back to you."
"Justin. It's me." My mom. "I was just at the diner and talked to Debbie and she told me some distressing... well, not distressing exactly -- but it's news that CONCERNS me. Please get back to me as soon as possible. I'm calling your studio, too, to see if you're down there. Bye, honey."
"Gee. I wonder what the awful news could be?"
"YOU'RE the only 'awful news' in my life!" I was joking, but he gave me a serious look.
"Why is it that whenever I hear your mother's voice I feel like she just walked in and saw me with my fucking hand down the front of your pants?"
"Because that's the way she usually finds us?" I reached down for his dick, but he brushed me off. Something was really bothering him. He got out of bed and searched around in his suitcase for his robe.
"I better get going to the hotel. I need to check in. And I want to get the hell out of here before your little 'boyfriend' gets home from the store and decides to kick my ass. Or TRY to."
I stopped dead. "My boyfriend? Home from the store?" Ah, ha! Now things were beginning to become clear. "Brian, you think I'm doing something with MICHAEL? That's IT! That's what all this weirdness has been about!" I got up and followed him around the room as he gathered up his clothes.
"I knew it! I KNEW it was you on the phone that night!" I pulled the hanger with his pants on it out of his hands and hung them back up in the closet. "Forget that for now. You aren't going anywhere."
"I don't know what you are talking about."
"Don't deny it. That's when you stopped calling. Right after that."
"I was busy."
"So, you WERE calling me. You admit it!"
"I may have called here a few times..."
"A few times! Sometimes you called twice in a night. Almost every night. Just admit it. You are so stubborn it's maddening."
"I might have." He was smirking at me now.
"And then Michael answered the phone -- that's when you stopped." I couldn't fucking believe it! He is such a dick sometimes.
"You didn't need me to call if you had someone there with you. You didn't need me to interrupt your life anymore. I'd been trying to break the habit -- but I kept falling off the wagon."
"Interrupt? Brian, Michael was staying with me at the loft because he wasn't speaking to Emmett. He gave me a job at the store and I let him stay here. And he did for about a few weeks -- until Ben asked him to stay over there for a while. And then he and Emmett made up and he's back where he belongs. NOT living here!" I pointed around the loft. "Do you see any sign of Michael here? No comic books everywhere? No toy robots? Any of Michael's clothes or junk around?"
"Well...." He sat back down on the bed as if thinking everything over.
I sat down next to him. "How could Michael -- and me...? I mean, it's total incest! I don't even think he's hot!"
"He is. He is hot."
"To YOU, maybe. To me he's like some annoying big brother." I wanted to slap some sense into him -- but I just flicked his forehead with my finger.
"I don't know --you and Mikey. It somehow made perfect sense. A perfect symmetry." He was mumbling a bit with his head down, so aware of what a muddle he'd made of the whole thing. It was kind of endearing.
"Perfectly wrong, you mean. It only made sense in your warped mind, Brian! Jeez!" I pulled his face over to force him to look me in the eye for once. "If you had just given me a REAL call. Really talked to me. Treated me like a man and spoken to me. Fucking ASKED me -- then I would have told you the truth. Set you straight. But you had to plunge ahead blindly, assuming and bumbling around like you always do...."
"You know, I don't usually let people say those kinds of things about me. I'm a mean bastard remember?"
I pinched him hard on the arm.
"Ouch! Hey, that fucking hurt!"
"I learned THAT lesson from YOU! It was so you'll remember not to condescend to me. And don't change the subject! I was sitting here -- alone most of the time -- and fucking miserable! And all because you don't know what you want? Or because you think you know what is happening -- but you are SO clueless? I don't know why I should even speak to you, let alone let you fuck me!"
"I was under the impression that you were the one who was seducing ME -- that I was the innocent, reluctant party."
"You've never been reluctant in your life!" I reached under his silky robe. "See? No reluctance here!" Of course, that was just a given.
"I thought you were pissed off at me -- Is THIS how you show that you're angry at someone? I'd love to be around when you're fucking furious."
"It's one of those hate fucks I've heard all about. I've never done one of those before -- unless you count Ki...." Shit! I almost let that get out. And I NEVER want Brian to know about what happened with me and Kip. Ever.
He tensed. "Who?" He demanded.
"Ah, you -- when I was mad at you. Or when you were mad at me -- like in New York."
"Are you sure?" Now, he was suspicious. He riveted those eyes at me and leaned in.
"Yes, I'm sure." There was only one sure way to distract him. "Don't you want to see how I used to 'talk' to you when you were calling me -- and not saying anything?"
"That was a stupid thing for me to do, I know. I didn't mean to...."
"I'm not looking for an apology, Brian! At least not at this moment. So do what you do best and shut up for a minute." I took my hand off his dick and took hold of my own.
"I never should have left you alone here. You've developed a real attitude."
"Yes, but now I'm developing THIS." I began stroking it slowly. "What's that, Brian? How's the weather out there? Sunny and warm? What a surprise. It's raining here again. And it's cold in this place. I had to buy one of those little space heaters to keep from freezing my balls off. I couldn't think of any other way to keep them warm...."
He took that cue without missing a beat.
"Sometimes I had to rub the feeling back into my... extremities. To get them nice and warm... nice and hot...."
He moved up to my cock.
"Sometimes it was... HARD to keep my mind on my other work."
And it WAS hard. Harder than I can ever remember. "So, I would just lie here in bed... trying to work up enough friction to light a fire."
He started using his hand as well as his mouth and I was finding it more and more difficult to keep up my phone monologue.
"I was a Boy Scout, did you know that, Brian? Good thing they didn't realize then what I know now -- about myself I mean. You certainly can learn some interesting skills at Boy Scout camp. I know I did... ahhh."
I had to stop and catch my breath. He stopped, too, and waited.
"Sometimes we would have... ah... like a weenie roast."
He paused again and gave me a quizzical look.
"You heat the weenie until it's hot. Really hot. Realllllly hottt. And then when it can't get any hottttterrrrr...."
"God damn it, you son of a bitch! My goddamn mother was RIGHT! I thought she was out of her fucking mind when she told me YOU were in the diner this morning! I thought she was having some kind of post-menopausal hallucination. I should have fucking KNOWN!"
Brian looked at me and then we both looked at Michael, suddenly standing there next to the bed. He'd obviously used his key and let himself in while we were... occupied with other things. If Michael had really been a comic book character steam would have been coming out of his ears. As it was, his jacket was drenched with the rain and he was spraying water all around as he literally shook with anger.
"Doesn't anyone ever ring the fucking bell anymore?" Brian sat back on the bed and covered his face with his hands.
"I should ring the bell? Knock on the fucking door? I'll ring your fucking bell, you fucking jerk!" Michael had an armload of material he was supposed to bring for me to work on for the website. He flung the whole stack right on top of us.
"I thought you assured me that Michael would NOT be bursting in here to chew me a new asshole? Well, you were wrong."
I could only shrug, helplessly. But Michael turned on me, his eyes blazing.
"And YOU! What are you thinking of? How many nights did I have to listening to you crying, for fucksake? And the first chance you get you hop in here with HIM -- again? You must be fucking delusional!"
"Michael, you don't understand...."
"Understand? Understand? HE disappears off the face of the planet and doesn't even let me know where. I have to find out from BEN? You're supposed to be my best friend, Brian! Do you know how that made me FEEL? Like I was nothing! Like I counted for nothing to you! That's how I felt! Fuck you!"
"Mikey, if I'd told you, you would have tried to stop me...."
"Damned right I would have tried to stop you! That's what friends are supposed to do -- stop people from making fucking fools of themselves. Only you didn't give me the chance. And don't call me 'Mikey' -- that's something that a friend calls another friend, Brian. And you're not my goddamn friend ANYMORE!"
Michael turned and stomped towards the door. "The both of you make me want to puke! Do you know that? You fucking DESERVE each other! You are both seriously deranged!"
The sound of the big metal door rolling shut behind him echoed through the loft.
Brian stared at the spot where Michael had stood and delivered his tirade. He closed his eyes. "I think I would have preferred it if he'd just burst in here and shot both of us. They would have called it a crime of passion and let him off with time served."
"That's not funny -- Michael was really fumimg."
"I know. I wasn't being funny. And I don't really blame him for being angry."
"He'll calm down. I'm sure he didn't mean what he said."
"Oh, he meant it. And he's right -- that's what YOU should have done, if you had even a lick of sense."
"Then it's a good thing for you, Brian, that I don't have any sense."
But he wouldn't say anything more. He just turned over and buried his face in the dark blue pillow.
Continue on to "Love Minus Zero/No Limit -- Part 4", the final section of the chapter.
©Gaedhal, May 2002
Picture of Randy Harrison and Gale Harold from Showtime.
Here is the link to the lyrics to "Love Minus Zero/No Limit" from Bob Dylan's album Bringing It All Back Home.
Updated June 17, 2002