Being a professional mover sucked. Wade worked two jobs and this was his least favorite one, because a) there were no free sex toys and b) there were no perks. Or he thought there were no perks, until a college student in a Captain America T-shirt and matching boxers half-fell out of his own front door… and practically into Wade’s lap.
It was a really cute college student, too. Wide brown eyes, soft brown hair, and a Cupid’s bow of a mouth that was downright unfair.
“Peter Parker?” Wade enquired, even as he took an expert inventory of the delicious Mr. Parker’s body, from his slender limbs to his charmingly messy bedhead to his sleep-flushed skin.
“Er, hi?” Peter peered up at Wade blearily. “Is it already—wow, it’s noon. Sorry. I had this paper due, and then my geriatric computer crashed and I had to rewrite the whole essay from memory, and—” He paused to breathe. “I’m sorry. You’re the delivery guy from Craigslist.”
“Cheap muscle for cheap hustle,” Wade parroted his lame company’s lame slogan. Every single day, he debated whether or not to strangle Weasel for coming up with that. It made ’em sound like they were drug couriers. Or pimps.
Peter leaned out into the hallway. “Is the couch here? Whoa. That’s… Will that fit through the door?”
Wade patted the giant box that, given the schematics printed on the carton, likely contained an impossible-to-assemble IKEA monstrosity. “I’ll make it fit, don’t worry, sweetheart.”
The tips of Peter’s ears went pink. Oooh, so he was thinking dirty, too. That generally boded well for Wade and Wade’s chances of getting laid.
Clearing his throat awkwardly, Peter stepped aside. Wade angled the box in and shoved, then re-angled it and shoved again, and eventually, after a bout of creative cursing and even more creative maneuvering, the couch was in Peter’s apartment. Wade scrutinized the ratty carpet, the stained ceiling and the kitchen counter covered almost entirely by lab paraphernalia—beakers and burners and a baffling labyrinth of glass tubes.
Ah. A science student. Or an enterprising crystal meth manufacturer à la Breaking Bad, although that latter possibility was unlikely considering how poor Peter was. Cooking up meth would be a lot more lucrative than… whatever Peter was doing to support himself.
Because it was a depressingly empty apartment. There were no furnishings in the living room, which meant that Peter had been, what, eating his dinners while sitting cross-legged on the mangy, greenish-yellow carpet?
Dang. Wade wondered how long Peter had saved to be able to afford this couch. Maybe it was related to the brand new Stark Industries mug in the kitchen sink. Wasn’t Stark giving out those scholarships, nowadays? It was all over the papers. Peter must be a recent Stark beneficiary.
Wade wouldn’t mind being a Parker beneficiary. Specifically, the beneficiary of that tight little ass—skinny but with just enough of a curve to it to inspire the imagination. Wade loved tiny asses. He loved how he could cup them in his hands and encompass them entirely in his palms, loved how big and mean they made him feel, so big and mean that he had to be unbearably tender with them, that he had to eat them out for hours just to make up for all the evil thoughts in his head.
Being tender with Peter Parker would be a treat.
“I might be ordering loads of furniture for you to deliver.” Peter scratched his unnecessarily precious button-nose. “Over the next couple weeks.”
“Yeah?” There was no mantelpiece for Wade to pose against seductively, so all he could do was loom. With how tall Wade was, it must be intimidating, because Peter swallowed nervously and glanced away. “Lucky me.”
“Why would you be lu… um,” Peter squeaked, like he had no clue how to cope with someone hitting on him. “I just. S-see you later, I guess?”
“I’ll be seeing you again.” Wade’s tone brooked no argument. Which wasn’t his style; he didn’t believe in steamrolling himself into someone’s pants, because that led to dubious consent issues, and Wade was a stickler for total, enthusiastic consent. He decided to scale his flirting down a bit; Peter was obviously the type that required a more protracted wooing. “That is to say… Our company would grateful to have your business again.”
“Absolutely. Yes. It will.” Peter nodded vigorously.
When Wade hoisted the carton against a wall to prevent it from tipping over, Peter’s eyes darted furtively across Wade’s towering frame, lingering on Wade’s bulging, rippling biceps.
“Oh,” Peter croaked, and retreated behind the kitchen counter. Was he hiding signs of interest in his boxers? Score.
Since Peter had pre-paid via PayPal, there was no reason for Wade to hang around. That, and he had another delivery after this. He wished he didn’t, though. Damn, how he wished. “Bye, sugar,” he said, and tossed the standard promotional voucher onto the counter. “Get 10% off when you call my name.”
“I mean,” Wade said earnestly, “when you call and give them my name.”
“N... No problem.” Peter was still croaking. “I’ll do that.”
Wade left with a spring in his step and a whistle on his lips.
Wade’s delivery job had taken on a shiny appeal that it hadn’t had before—a shiny, irresistible, Peter-shaped appeal. Frequent deliveries and lots of playful banter had stoked the sexual tension between them to nigh-unbearable heights, and Wade wasn’t certain he wouldn’t just snap and have Peter on that fugly IKEA couch of his. But Wade had to take it slow; his instincts told him that he would frighten Peter away with blatant aggression.
And he didn’t wanna frighten Peter away. Not only because it went against Wade’s principles to frighten anybody with sex, but because it would be… a pity not to have Peter around on a permanent basis. Wade imagined Peter in Wade’s bedroom, stripping just for him, shyly and sweetly, night after night. Consistency had never turned Wade on before, but fuck if it wasn’t doin’ it for him now. And it was just an imagined consistency, at this stage. It wasn’t even real.
Jesus, Wade was turning into such a sap. A let’s-have-a-deep-and-meaningful-conversation-before-joining-our-souls-as-well-as-our-bodies sap. Wade was a slut for quickies, but Peter had him replacing “fucking” with “making love” in his head. Peter had installed a freaking spell-checker in Wade’s brain.
Wade was a goner.
Of course, it would’ve been too much to ask that his boss and the bane of his existence, Vanessa, wouldn’t notice his goner-ism and wouldn’t remark on it. Vanessa was his ex from a decade ago and was the manager of the sex shop where he moonlighted at his second—and usually his favorite—job. Sometimes, Wade pondered how rotten his karma was for him to deserve having Vanessa and Weasel as his best friends, and what sins he’d committed in a past life to deserve being roped into working with them.
At seven p.m. on a Sunday, Vanessa surveyed Wade with her queenly, steely gaze. “You’ve been irritatingly cheerful, lately. New pet?”
A vision flashed through Wade’s mind of Peter in a collar. A collar that Wade had put on him. Wade’s collar. “Hell, yeah,” Wade said. “Or so I hope. His name’s Peter and he’s perfect.”
“I’m surprised you didn’t nail ’n’ sail, like you always do.”
“This boy’s too delicate for that.”
“And since when has delicacy done it for you?”
“Since when has anything not done it for me?”
“Point. You pansexual pervert, you.”
“I’m a pervert? You run a sex shop.”
“You work at a sex shop.”
“Which is why you should do some actual work. Wipe that dreaminess off your lousy mug and get to shelving. We’re re-stocking the Vibratex anal plugs and you have approximately a hundred price-tags to stick onto deplorably uncreative packaging.”
“Why don’t you volunteer to lead the marketing department at Vibratex, then?”
“Honey, if I did that, Vibratex would have a market monopoly. And that’s illegal.”
“What’s illegal is the exact shade of hazel of my Petey-pie’s eyes.”
Vanessa looked revolted. “If you say ‘Petey-pie’ again, I will fire you.”
“You’ve been threatening to fire me for six years.”
“In this case? Mistress Al will back me up.”
Wade snorted. The elderly Mistress Al was the owner of this shop, and she ruled it with an iron fist. “Please. She owns both our asses and she ain’t handing them back.”
After three more deliveries, Wade was getting curious. And horny, but that was his default setting. Curiosity, however? Especially curiosity of such a personal nature? That was unusual. Just like Wade’s irrational attachment to Peter was unusual.
Seriously, though. How was the li’l ingénue affording all this crap?
“Did you hit pay-dirt, or what?” Wade gestured at the increasingly well-furnished apartment. “Not to be nosy, but… Nah, I’ll be nosy. What gives?” Wade’s eyes narrowed. “Or rather, who gives?”
Peter shuffled his feet. “It’s Mr. Stark. I won his internship, and it’s got a provision that… Uh, it sets aside a whopping five thousand dollars for ‘domestic essentials,’ and Mr. Stark is determined that I use them up. Each and every dollar. He’s been kinda obsessed about it ever since he saw my apartment.”
Wait, what? Stark had been in here? With Peter, the proverbial milkshake that brought all the daddies to the yard? Had Stark downed that milkshake before Wade had even gotten a sip? “And when did he see your apartment?”
“About eight weeks ago? Before you delivered the couch.” Peter didn’t appear concerned by Wade’s intrusive questions, likely because everyone around Peter must be drilling him about his interactions with the infamous celebrity industrialist, Tony Stark. Peter probably assumed it was Stark that Wade was inquisitive about, not him. “Mr. Stark doesn’t have much time to keep track of his interns, but he said it was an insult to him that any intern in his employ would live without ‘basic amenities.’ Then again, he reckons his Lamborghini is a basic amenity, so…” Peter shrugged.
Right. Right. Dude in a Lamborghini versus dude in a dented pickup truck. Wade could do the math. Heck, even he’d hop on that rich asshole’s dick if it’d get him a drive in a Lamborghini. Which, okay, no. Wade preferred topping as a rule. But still. Even he could admit that when compared to Stark, he came up short. Very short. Not short in the dick department, of that Wade was confident, but short in every other department.
“He keeps insisting I buy things,” Peter went on obliviously, like Wade wasn’t burning to a crisp from jealousy. “And prove that I’ve bought things. I have to send him the receipts, and everything. So I just… try not to spend too much while still spending enough to satisfy him?”
“Satisfy him?” Wade’s mood soured even further. “Listen, if he’s tryna be your sugar daddy or something… If he’s pressuring you into doing it with him because you’re on his scholarship…”
“No!” Peter exclaimed, visibly appalled. “God, no. No. God.”
“You’ve become awfully religious. Stark have you screaming out for god a lot?”
“No. Why’re you—why’re you so weirdly fixated on that? Mr. Stark is not my sugar daddy. And he doesn’t f-fu— take advantage of me.”
I’m fixated because I’m jealous, because your beloved ‘Mr. Stark’ is providing for you while I’m not, and because he’d be a fool not to want you like I do. “You’re right. I’m being a jerk.” He was. A petty jerk, at that. “My apologies.”
“No, that’s…” Peter trailed off, and then seemed… sad? Wistful? “I won’t be meeting you again. So, thank you. For your help with all these deliveries. I can’t say how much I…” He trailed off again, oddly hesitant. “Appreciated it.”
“Whaddaya mean? Won’t there be more orders?”
“I’ve almost used up the five thousand dollars. I’ve got a Macbook Pro, a couch, a bed, a coffee table, a desk, a chair and all the science equipment and biochemistry textbooks I need for my dissertation. Now all I need is a bookshelf to put those books on. It’ll be my last purchase.”
“So you’ll still have me delivering a bookshelf,” Wade said, desperate to see Peter again, even if it was just once. He couldn’t explain to himself why he hadn’t gone Big Bad Wolf on Peter and devoured him like Wade did most of his conquests. Nor could he explain why, despite Peter being noticeably attracted to him in return, Wade still hadn’t made a move. It was as though Peter paralyzed Wade’s predatory impulses; after their protracted courtship, Wade had become strangely afraid of somehow harming Peter. The more he saw Peter, the more afraid Wade got. He was hopeless.
“Um, no. I’ll get the bookshelf myself. Besides, I won’t have any money to spare for the delivery cost, since just buying the bookshelf will use up the last of my grant.”
Wade squinted at Peter’s scrawny physique skeptically. “You? You’ll carry a bookshelf up four flights of stairs and into your lounge? May I remind you that your building doesn’t have an elevator?”
Peter exhaled gustily. “It’s not that bad. My friend Ned’s dad has a van we can cart the bookshelf in. It’s got a hideous Herbie Goes Bananas paint scheme, but it’s functional.” Peter fidgeted. “Mostly. And when we get the bookshelf into the foyer, Ned and I will heave it up the stairs.”
“Shit, Pete, I can give you a freebie if you—”
“No, I’ll show you. It isn’t that huge a bookshelf. Not as huge as you.” Peter stammered, “N-not that I think… about how huge…” Peter yanked a Stark mobile phone out of his jeans and flicked through it before passing it to Wade. “Here, this is a photo of the bookshelf.”
Wade’s eyebrows shot up. “It’s way too big for you to handle.”
“I won’t have any problem handling that.”
“You sure?” Wade whistled. “Because even I’d have a problem handling that.”
Peter frowned at him. “Pardon?”
“That’s a picture of a fifteen-inch dildo.”
Peter snatched his phone back. “What? No. It’s—” His face drained of color. “I have no idea how that got there,” he said unconvincingly, radiating a palpable horror. He was acting as if he’d like nothing more than to sink into the earth and never surface again. Which was a tad dramatic for just a photo of a dildo and not a photo of, like, a man fucking a goat. Wade drew the line at bestiality.
“Eh, you must’ve toggled between windows by mistake.” Wade grinned. “To be honest, I’m impressed. You can take fifteen inches? Wow.”
Peter’s pallor abruptly transformed into a blush. “I—I don’t—” He squeezed his eyes shut, as if he could un-see the image and magically make Wade un-see it, too. “I’ve never used one of those,” he whispered finally. “It was just—I was just looking it up. For research.”
“Research?” Wade smirked. “Not just for your dissertation, I expect?” He pulled a card out of his wallet and handed it to Peter. “This is where I work on weekends. You oughta visit someday. For research.” Wade winked.
Peter stared at him, and then at the gold-embossed text that spelled out Bacchanalia: A Pleasure Shop, underlined by a stylized riding-crop. “You also work at a sex shop?” he asked faintly.
“Yep. Cool, huh?”
“More like scary. You must... You must know a lot. About this stuff.”
Wade could feel his eyes twinkling. “You mean about filthy, filthy sex? And all the kinky ways to enjoy it? You bet I do.”
Unbelievably, Peter’s blush deepened even further. It was adorable. And virginal. Because Wade now had no doubt that Peter was a virgin. It soothed Wade’s envy of Tony Stark, somewhat. Stark hadn’t gotten to Peter first.
“Which is why I can give you advice, if you need it. And a discount on our most popular toys.” Vanessa would have Wade’s hide—not literally, thankfully, given her experience with whipping, paddling and caning people’s hides—but Wade wouldn’t mind taking the discount and the resulting loss of profit out of his own paycheck. He just suddenly had to see Peter there, in his shop, browsing the shelves with that megawatt blush on his face.
Peter blinked at him. “That’s, um. That’s very nice of you. But I’m...” His voice dropped to a mumble. “I’m sorta busy, so...”
“Afraid of visiting a sex shop?” Wade asked shrewdly. “Don’t be. It’s far from your home, so you’re unlikely to bump into anyone you know.”
“I bumped into you.”
“Yes, but I’m an employee,” Wade explained patiently. “Sworn to secrecy.” Then, with genuine sincerity, he added: “But if it makes you that uncomfortable, you don’t have to go. I can always answer your questions, er, informally.” Plus, it’d be an excuse to get Peter’s number. Not that Wade didn’t already have Peter’s number for the deliveries, but Peter hadn’t offered Wade his number privately, and Wade respected boundaries.
But Peter just shook his head. Bummer. “I’m... I’m fine, thanks. Don’t worry about me.”
“The fact that you’re fine—damn fine, even—is why I’m worried about your ‘research’ leading you to dangerous places.” Wade clapped Peter on the shoulder, friendly-like, trying not to panic at the prospect of losing Peter forever. But he couldn’t push himself on Peter. He just couldn’t. “Stay safe, kid. And if you ever change your mind about the advice…” Wade waved at the card. “You know where to find me.”
To be continued.
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