Title: Behind the Veneer
Archive: MA, anyone else please ask.
Catagory: AR, Qui/Obi
Spoilers: Not really.
Summary: In 1965 Hollywood, a veteran actor becomes captivated by a fresh faced newcomer and deals with the confines of society as he attempts to get to know him better.
Disclaimers: Everything Star Wars belongs to George Lucas and Lucasfilms. I am just playing with his characters, borrowing the boyz and their accomplices and will return them all when I'm through. No money is being made from this, it is all done for entertainment only.
Author's notes: This story first appeared in the Force of a Different Color II. This is my one and only attempt at placing Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan someplace other than the Star Wars universe. The setting may be unfamiliar, but the characters are all based on the SW personas that we have all come to know and love.
Massive Qui-Gon hugs to Monalee and Sian whose suggestions and insightful comment were immeasurable in making this a much better piece, not to mention the more basic corrections in grammar and spelling they provided as well. I couldn't have done it without them. As always, I can't resist making a few final tweaks, so all mistakes are mine. Feedback is treasured in any way, shape or form either onlist or privately at firstname.lastname@example.org Hope you enjoy the story.
Quinlan Gordon Jinnai disengaged himself from the buxom young actress he had been dancing - no, make that necking - with and made his way to the table in the back corner he was sharing with his friends. "Just once I would like to be able to come to one of these soirees and not have to spend half the night fondling a variety of available women to keep up appearances," he grumbled as he dropped into his chair. He blew out a heavy sigh before taking a long swallow of the deep amber Black Bush Irish Whiskey in the crystal glass in front of him.
"You wouldn't be grumbling so much if the people you were groping were handsome young men, Quin," the dark-haired man seated beside him said in a hushed tone.
Quin took another swallow of the amber liquid then looked over at his friend. Alexander Chiron was a very handsome man, with icy blue eyes and jet-black hair styled to perfection. Although both of their sexual preferences leaned to men, their relationship had never shifted over to being intimate. The two of them had met on the set of a movie when Quin had been in his very early twenties and Xan had been a child actor at the tender age of five. Mentoring the boy through his first acting role had given the two the beginnings of a solid relationship, which had lasted more than thirty years but those early interactions between them had always made Quin think of Xan like a little brother.
"Yeah, well, I don't expect to be able to do that anytime in this century, Xani," Quin quipped softly using his friend's boyhood nickname. "People may have become a bit more open-minded in the last few years but I don't see many people in 1965 America ready to accept two guys walking down the street holding hands.
"That has as much likelihood of happening as me being added to the elite guest list at Chateau Briandelle in Atlanta," the dark skin man seated on his other side huffed.
"Well, at least some progress is being made on that front, Mace," Xan replied. He stopped speaking as the waiter placed the next round of drinks on the table, continuing only after the man was out of earshot. "The civil rights movement seems to be well underway. Too bad equality in sexual orientation can't be achieved the same way."
"The government can mandate civil rights and desegregation, passing as many laws as the politicians' little hearts desire, but nothing they do will ever make whites in the deep south treat colored people as equals," Mace Windell declared. "Luckily, I spend most of my time in California these days so it's not that much of an issue for me."
"Civil rights does seem to be the cause of choice in Hollywood these days," Quin agreed. "Too bad the industry's tolerance doesn't apply to dirty old gay men as well," he added in an amused whisper.
"Hey, don't lump me in as an old guy," Xan pouted. "I'm still young and handsome enough to attract anyone who interests me."
"And so modest too," Mace snorted.
The teasing ended when a white haired man came over to join the three. "Have you three been sitting back in this corner all night?" Kirk Mundi asked.
Quin looked up at his long-time agent and smiled. "You'll be happy to know that we have been doing our requisite groping - I mean dancing - with an assortment of the cute young things in attendance tonight."
Mundi was one of only a handful of industry people who knew that Quin's and Xan's reputations as womanizers were carefully fabricated. They both made sure that they were seen at all the industry's social events with a new beauty on their arms each time, sometimes even taking some of the less flighty ones home for a quick fuck to perpetuate the charade. Although neither of them had ever been interested in a more permanent relationship with any of the women, they encouraged speculation about their lady of the week. Their real encounters could offer them nothing lasting since fear of exposure kept most men in Hollywood's gay community from seeing the same person more than a couple of times.
"Well, Quin and Xan have been anyway," Mace countered with disdain, "even though I'm the only one of us who would have actually enjoyed it. But since none of the handful of young colored starlets under contract to the studio are in attendance, my dancing feet will have to stay under the table," he added sarcastically. The movie industry may have become enlightened enough to accept colored actors and actresses intermingling with the white population as friends, but acceptance of interracial dating was something else all together.
Mundi laughed, then turned back to Quin. "So are you enjoying your vacation, buddy?"
But Quin did not appear to have heard the question since his eyes were riveted to a young man who had just entered the ballroom. "Who is that?" he asked without looking away.
The faint hint of a chuckle colored Mundi's voice as he answered Quin. "That is Odhran Benneit Kendrick, Paul Koon's newest discovery. Koon found the kid waiting tables in some backwater hamlet in Scotland while he was scouting out locations for a shoot. He got the kid a couple of bit parts and yesterday the studio signed him to a contract. He's been cast in a supporting role in Sacul's new film."
"The 30's mafia film the studio sent me the script for?" Quin asked, with a quick glance at his agent. "One and the same," he heard Mundi murmur in reply as he shifted his gaze back to the young man who had now moved to the edge of the dance floor. Ignoring his agent, he took a moment to catalogue the newcomer. Kendrick looked to be in his early twenties, with a very nice looking body, longish reddish blond hair, eyes that appeared to be a grayish green from this distance and a smile that could melt even the most frigid woman's heart.
After a moment, Mundi touched Quin's arm to get his attention and prodded, "I know that you're still Sacul's first choice for that role, so all it would take is one phone call and the part would be yours." Mundi had been trying for weeks to convince Quin to take the part but he had been adamant that he wanted a break from filming.
Quin looked from his agent to the handsome man being introduced by Koon to one of the studio's directors a few feet away. The sparkling eyes and honest smile gracing the younger man's face as he shook the director's hand struck a cord of longing in Quin that he hadn't felt in many years. As he watched the man greet the next person in the group, he decided that he owed it to himself to at least attempt to make the man's acquaintance.
Knowing that his agent wanted him to take the role as much for the fee that it would put in Mundi's pocket as for the fact that it would be a good role for his career, Quin winked at Xan then turned back to Mundi and said, "Why don't you see if you can get someone to introduce us and I promise I'll at least consider it."
Kirk Mundi rolled his eyes in obvious annoyance but left the table and headed for the group at the edge of the dance floor.
"He never does things like that for me," Xan whined.
Quin slapped his friend on the back and chuckled. "When you started contributing almost twenty-five percent of his yearly salary with your casting fees then I'm sure he'll do almost anything you ask."
Xan glanced back at the group their agent was now approaching. "Isn't he a little young for you, Quin?"
Looking again at the handsome man now being introduced to Mundi by the studio execs, Quin focused on the smiling face. The newcomer appeared much younger than the men he usually spent his time with but there was just something about the man that he found intriguing. "Maybe a bit, but with the way he's been flirting since he came into the room, I expect he's experienced enough."
"What makes you think he would even be interested?" Xan added.
"Have you ever known Quin to be wrong when he's pointed out someone who leans your direction?" Mace replied before his friend could.
"Well, there was the Brit who worked on 'Settling the Score' with us," Xan countered.
"He's gay - he just wasn't ready to admit it back then," Quin answered mildly. "I heard he was seen hanging around at Lareckey's the last time he was in town."
The conversation ended as they saw Mundi approaching the table with the object of their discussion, Paul Koon and one of the studio bigwigs.
"Evening, gentleman," Koon said to the three men as he reached the table. "I would like to introduce you to Saber Studio's newest addition. This is Odhran Benneit Kendrick." Starting from his right, he continued the introduction. "These are three of the studio's biggest stars, Mace Windell, Alexander Chiron and Quinlan Jinnai. Watch these guys and you'll be able to learn a lot from them."
"It's a pleasure to make your acquaintance, Mr. Windell. You were great in 'Shank'," Odhran said warmly as he shook Mace's hand, his natural Scottish brogue coloring the formal words. He shifted to shake Xan's hand and continued before Mace could reply. "And you as well, Mr. Chiron. I have seen a number of your films though I must admit 'Interlude with Lorraine' is my favorite." The easygoing demeanor faltered a bit as he moved to Quin, replaced by an awestruck nervousness. "Mr. Jinnai, it is a real honor to meet you, sir." He gulped in a deep breath then rushed on. "I have seen all your movies, most a number of times, and I must say that you have always been my idol. If I could become a tenth as good an actor as you are, I would be satisfied."
In contrast to his normal demeanor with awestruck fans, Quin found himself uncharacteristically underplaying his status in the industry. "I'm glad you enjoyed the films but I'm merely an actor doing a day's work for a day's pay just like everyone else, Odhran," he said as he shook the hand held out to him.
"Please call me OB, all my friends do," Odhran replied. A blush rose on his cheeks as he realized what he had said. "Pardon me, that was rather presumptuous of me."
"No offense taken," Quin replied with a genuine smile. "Being somewhat brazen is a requirement for survival in Hollywood. I hear you've accepted a role in Sacul's new film."
"Yes, Mr. Koon finalized the deal for me today," Odhran said. "It's a supporting role. I'll be playing a somewhat brash dock worker who dates the mafia don's only daughter."
Seeing the man's compact but muscular form and his impish grin and laughing eyes, Quin was quick to comment. "I expect that you'll do very well in that role." He pointed to the chair beside him and invited, "Why don't you join us for a drink?"
"There are a number of people I'd still like to introduce you too, Odhran," Koon said firmly.
"Well, I guess that's your answer," Odhran replied with a frown. "Maybe you can give me a rain check?"
"Of course. I'm sure our paths will cross again at some point," Quin replied.
"I certainly hope so. It was nice meeting all of you," Odhran said as he turned and followed his agent and the studio executive.
Quin's eyes followed the young man as he walked away and, after a few moments, Kirk Mundi spoke to reclaim his attention. "So, have you reconsidered the part in the Sacul film, Quin?"
Reluctantly pulling his gaze from Odhran's handsome form, Quin turned to his agent. "I'll give it some more thought and call you to discuss it in the next couple of days."
Xan leaned closer to his friend and stage whispered, "Going to sleep on it, Quin?"
"Dream on it is more likely, Xan," Mace countered.
Quin ignored the friendly jabs as Mundi said, "Rumor has it that Finn Valora has a screen test with Sacul scheduled for Monday afternoon. Should I call the studio to let them know you have reconsidered?"
"I'll need to reread the script before I make a firm decision but you can tell them that I am re-evaluating the situation and I may be interested in a meeting to discuss options on Monday," Quin replied offhandedly.
"You may want to focus on scenes 7, 12, 15, 23 and 28” Mundi said mildly. "Those are the times the don interacts with his daughter's boyfriend, with 23 being when he catches them in a rather compromising position." He threw his hands up in the air and backed away when he saw Quin's scowl. "Okay, okay. Just call me Monday so we can discuss the details."
When Mundi disappeared back into the crowd, Xan taunted with a smile, "Make sure you have Kirk write final dramatic license approval into your contract." When Quin looked confused, he added, "Would be a shame to have the kid's great body covered by a body stocking when you drag him from your 'daughter's' bed. Might be the only chance you get to see that cute ass naked."
Quin watched the ass in question saunter further away as Odhran was herded into another group introduction before turning back to his friends. "As much fun as it's been providing the evening's entertainment for you two, I think I'll call it a night and head home. Just remember that revenge is something best served cold, so when you least expect it…" he allowed the sentence to trail off, Xan and Mace knowing him well enough to get the implication.
"We still on for tennis on Sunday?" Mace asked as Quin stood.
"Yeah, 9am as always," Quin replied, as he moved away from the table. "Plan on spending the day. I'll order in some steaks and we can spend the afternoon lounging by the pool."
" Works for me but we'll need someone for a fourth. Ethan is on location in England doing that WWII flick, " Mace explained.
"Not an issue, I'm sure I can find someone," Xan said quickly when Quin started to turn back. "Make sure you get enough rest, old man. I'm looking forward to kicking your butt."
Quin headed for the door without bothering to answer, stopping only long enough for a casual goodbye to his newest acquaintance. "Enjoy the rest of the party, OB, and good luck with your new role."
"Thank you, Mr. Jinnai. It was an honor to meet you, sir," Odhran replied respectfully.
Quin allowed his hand to rest innocently on the younger man's shoulder, looked into those mesmerizing eyes and countered, "Call me Quin, all my friends do." He let his hand drop for decorum's sake even though he would have preferred not to. "You're part of Saber Films stable now, OB, and we're just one big family."
"Thanks, Quin. Hopefully we'll run into each other again sometime soon," Odhran said.
"I'm sure we will," Quin replied as he headed out the door.
Since Xan had picked him up for the soiree, Quin didn't have his car and had to figure out how to get home. The evening was pleasant and the hotel he was leaving was only a few blocks from his house so he decided to walk back. He was only stopped twice for autographs during the short walk and both groups of young women were very polite. He entered in the security code on the metal keypad beside the driveway gate and walked to the house as the gate closed again behind him.
The lights above the portico had been left on for him along with a couple on the first floor but otherwise the house was dark and empty. Quin had always valued his privacy too much to have a live-in housekeeper so he settled for someone to come in to do basic cleaning and some meal preparation who could also oversee the staff for any parties he threw. He had hired Adelle when she was a young, single mother struggling to get by, giving her a decent salary, a flexible schedule and providing health care for her and her children. Basically adopting her family, Quin helped her son when he got into some minor gang trouble and made sure that her kids stayed in school while Adelle mothered him when he partied too much or got his heart broken. She had been with him for over twenty years and now those kids were grown, a couple even had families of their own. These days it was one of her grandchildren who would sometimes come with Adelle for the day like their parents had before them.
He tossed his jacket over the back of the couch after he reset the door alarm and headed directly up the stairs. His bed was turned down and a small cooling box sat on the table beside his recliner with a note propped against it. You never get enough food at those hoity toity parties, Mr. Jinnai, so I left you a snack.
Glancing at the piled high roast beef and cheddar on rye and the homemade butterscotch bars, Quin knew that what Adelle really meant was that she didn't consider what was served at cocktail parties to be real food and he was thankful for her thoughtfulness. Years of constant support had forged a deep trust between Quin and Adelle. She made no comments about his lifestyle and instead became his silent ally, helping him by doing whatever it took to keep his private life away from the prying eyes of the tabloids.
Stripping down to just his briefs, Quin rummaged through his desk to find the copy of the Sacul script he had barely looked at originally and, with his snack, settled down in his chair to read after he found it. Even with the caliber of the script and production staff, he had dismissed the role originally because he was tired of the rigors of filming and really didn't need the money. But as he read on and he got further into the plot, he found himself drawn to the role of Don Leone Nikkos even without the added incentive of the handsome Odhran Benneit Kendrick. Before he even got to section twenty-three, containing the scene Mundi had mentioned, he was sold, knowing he wanted the role and that he would leave it to Kirk to work out an equitable deal with the studio.
After vowing he would read the rest on Saturday, Quin tossed the script aside and headed off to bed. He pulled off his briefs, settled under the covers and closed his eyes, his unconscious mind still focused on the young man he had met earlier tonight and the movie script he had spent the last few hours reading. It didn't take him long to fall asleep and almost immediately he fell into a swirl of chaotic dreaming. He shifted between his own person and that of the role he was considering and watched as OB switched from the handsome young Scotsman to the New York City dockworker and back again. At first, the dream images were wrapped into the movie scenes but soon those faded away and they were alone together in this very bedroom, OB's hands skimming his skin with teasing caresses. He finally awoke, chest heaving, his own hand wrapped around his cock and OB's name on his lips as he climaxed.
Disgusted with himself as he caught his breath, Quin climbed out of bed and went to the bathroom to get cleaned up. It had been years since anyone had inspired him to a wet dream and part of him was surprised at his reaction. He had an active sex life, never had any problems finding willing partners and didn't hesitate to masturbate if he found himself in need without a partner readily available. A balanced sex life did not normally contribute to wet dreams, especially for a man in his early fifties, and the fact that he'd had one made him feel like a mooning teenager.
Returning with another towel to cover the wet spot, Quin climbed back into bed and pulled up the covers even as his mind replayed the ending of his dream. Unlike many Irishmen, he was not normally a superstitious man but he hoped that the dream was a sign that OB would one day share his bed and not just an aging man's wishful thinking. Needless to say, it took quite some time before sleep came again for Quin.
With nothing pressing to take care of, Quin slept late on Saturday morning, getting up only when he heard Adelle rummaging around downstairs. It was a warm day so, after his shower, he dressed only in a pair of beat up shorts and headed down to the kitchen. "Good morning, Adelle," he said as he poured himself a cup of coffee.
"A few more minutes and it would be afternoon, Mr. Jinnai," she retorted, cocking her head towards the clock. "Breakfast or lunch?"
"Breakfast please, Adelle," he replied.
"The usual?" Adelle asked and, when he nodded, she set about preparing it.
By the time Quin had finished reading the first section of the Los Angeles Times and downed his first cup of coffee, his breakfast of three eggs over hard, pan fries, six strips of bacon and whole wheat toast was set in front of him. He ate at a leisurely pace, reading the remainder of the newspaper and consuming two more cups of coffee as he did.
Adelle usually only worked a few hours on Saturdays and today she spent the time preparing Quin's Saturday night meal. She also ordered the steaks and made the side dishes he would need for his weekly get together with the boys on Sunday. While she worked, Quin did some much-neglected paperwork. Despite continual prodding, he refused to turn over control of his assents to an accountant so he needed to write the checks for his monthly expenses. It took almost two hours but he completed the task, giving the envelopes to Adelle to mail for him on her way home.
The rest of the afternoon was spent sitting in the sun in his deck chair, drinking Guinness and reading the rest of Sacul's script. The story had Don Nikkos dying at the end and Quin imagined the daughter's boyfriend cradling his dying body and weeping brokenly rather than the son. He laughed aloud at his far-fetched imaginings, knowing that a scene like that wouldn't appear on film in his lifetime.
Heading into the house as the purples of dusk began to fill the sky, Quin pulled out the meal Adelle had prepared for him, read through her extremely detailed heating instructions and placed the platter in the oven. Sometime he wondered if Adelle forgot that he had cooked for himself for years before she came along but decided it was more the fact that she knew he wouldn't bother. Instead, he would just drink Guinness and eat peanuts until he headed off to bed and God only knows what too many nights of that would do to his marketability. He watched an old John Wayne movie while he ate his dinner, caught the first few minutes of the news in case anything exciting had happened during the day then headed to bed.
Quin feel asleep almost immediately, the result of an afternoon of sun and the Guinness. He slept dreamlessly for the first few hours but as dawn approached he found his dreams again filled with images of Odhran Benneit Kendrick. Some were in the form of the dockworker boyfriend but most were representations of the young actor himself, in a variety of sexual and non-sexual scenarios. This time Quin came awake before spilling his semen onto the sheets although his cock was hard and aching. A glance at the clock showed it was only 7am so he decided to lie back and indulge himself.
He closed his eyes and allowed the fantasy images of his dream to fill his mind - OB lying in this very bed beside him, OB's hands skimming lightly over Quin's chest, stopping to pinch his nipples into hardness. Quin's hands moved in tandem with the fantasy ones, tweaking his nipples until they had formed hard peaks. Then he continued his fantasy and shifted lower, slowly running his fingertips along his flanks and the insides of his thighs. By now his cock was throbbing and he gradually brought his hand from his thigh to wrap around his length. He stroked slowly, running his thumb over the fluid at the tip with each pass and spreading it down the length of his shaft. He continued this for a few minutes, letting his pleasure build in tiny increments until he felt his balls pulling closer to this body. Only then did he speed his strokes and tighten his grip, his breathing becoming harsh and erratic, until his climax erupted over his fist in pearly ropes.
When his body finally came down from his orgasm, Quin rolled out of bed and headed into the bathroom. After quickly relieving himself, he brushed his teeth, shaved and showered to get ready for his day. He dressed a white polo shirt and tan shorts, not exactly pristine tennis whites but good enough since the tennis court was on his property. He headed to the kitchen to plug in the coffee pot Adelle had prepared the day before and then walked out to get the Sunday newspaper from the slot beside the driveway gate. He dropped the paper on the table and got out the items for his light breakfast. After pouring himself a bowl of cheerios and topping them with sliced bananas, he placed two pieces of bread in the toaster and filled his coffee mug.
Quin attempted to peruse the newspaper while he ate his breakfast but his thoughts kept returning to his dream and his pre-shower activity. While masturbation was not uncommon for him, he very seldom fantasized, preferring to just concentrate on the feeling of his own hands on his body. He knew what he liked, what touches brought him pleasure and that was normally more than enough to bring him to a gratifying completion. Although he was definitely interested in getting to know the young Scotsman, his mind's fixation on OB, especially to the point of instigating two consecutive nights of erotic dreams, surprised him.
The chime of his grandfather clock pulled him from his thoughts and Quin rose from his seat to clean up his breakfast dishes. He placed the plastic containers that Adelle had filled with water the day before into a small cooler, covered them with ice and brought the cooler out to the edge of the court. Xan and Mace were such frequent visitors to his home that he had given them both the gate code long ago. Since they could let themselves in and whomever Xan had chosen for a fourth would probably be arriving with one of them, Quin stayed out by the courts and went through a short routine of stretching exercises to limber up. He jogged around the court a couple of times and was pulling his racket and a couple cans of balls from the storage cabinet when he heard the gate whirr open. Looking over, he spotted Xan's car and waved his friend towards the driveway as he opened the canisters of tennis balls. He was bouncing each one a few times on the clay court to test them when he heard Xan approaching but dropped the balls in shock when he caught sight of his friend's companion.
"Are we having the dropsies this morning, Quin?" Xan teased, knowing full well what had caused Quin's unusual clumsiness. "I talked OB into being our fourth this morning."
OB blushed as he approached and held out his hand to Quin. "Good morning, Quin. I hope you don't mind." He glanced from his own faded and rather tight denim shorts and white T-shirt screen printed with a picture of the Beatles to Quin's polo and shorts to Xan's pristine white tennis outfit and added, "Though I appear to be slightly underdressed."
Quin scanned the appealing physique and then grasped the offered hand, holding it a little longer than he probably should have as he replied, "You're fine just the way you are. This will be a good way for all of us to get better acquainted." He ignore Xan as his friend rolled his eyes and mouthed "subtle" and continued to speak to OB. "Do you play often?"
"Honestly, I've only played a couple of times and I'm not very good at it," OB admitted. "I've never been much of an athlete. Played a little football and cricket in secondary school but that was the extent of it and it was many years ago."
"Couldn't have been that many, since you're what - twenty-two? And aren't you a bit small for football, OB?" Xan asked.
"Football for us equals soccer for you Yanks," Quin said before OB could.
"I'm twenty-seven, Xan. Me mum always said I have the face of a wee bairn," OB laughed, his Scottish brogue thick in the phrase.
Thinking that the T-shirt and shorts enhanced OB's youthful appearance, Quin agreed, "You'll appreciate that fact when you hit my age."
"Got it. His lack of expertise is why he's going to be your partner, Quin," Xan laughed. "It'll give Mace and me a chance to win for a change."
" I'm sure you'll do fine, OB," Quin said, shooting a glare at Xan. "Why don't we hit the ball around until Mace gets here so you can get back into it." When he noticed the younger man's hands were empty, he added, "After we find you a racket." He led OB to the storage cabinet and let him look through the extra rackets until he found one he was comfortable using.
With a smile, Quin nodded his head towards the court and said, "Ready?"
"As I'm bloody going to be," OB replied, his smile warm and friendly.
Quin hit a ball softly over the net that OB managed to make contact with, only he sent it sailing off the side of the court. Grabbing another one, he tried again but this one went the same direction at its mate. This went on until he had emptied both canisters of balls with the same result. As he and OB collected the balls, he called over to Xan. "Grab your racket and come out here." When he joined them, Quin handed him the canisters of tennis balls. "Hits us a few. I going to go help OB with his swing."
Ignoring his friend's knowing look, Quin vaulted the net and moved to stand behind OB. "How about a quick lesson." When OB nodded, he wrapped his arms around the younger man's from behind and repositioned his hands on the racket. "Okay, Xan."
This time when the ball came towards them, Quin directed OB's swing and the ball skimmed over the net. Quin adjusted OB's grip again and the second ball was returned more steadily. They continued to work on his swing, making minute adjustments until the racket was connecting solidly with the ball. By the time Xan had collected the balls again for the next round, Quin's body was begin to react to the proximity of the younger man in his arms. He unconsciously stepped closer to OB as Xan hit the next ball and had to fight back a moan when his partner leaned gently into him. He was sure the younger man could feel the beginning of his erection through his shorts and was encouraged when OB didn't pull away.
They remained in that position for the next three balls then Quin allowed his hands to fall away from the racket and stepped slowly back. "Okay let's see how you do on your own." OB turned to look at him, his wayward expression seeming to say, 'and I would want to do that why?', and Quin felt his heart leap.
Their eyes remained locked for a moment more before OB turned back to face Xan. "Fire away." He was able to return all the balls hit to him, though not as solidly as when Quin had been helping him. Before they could start another practice round, another car came up the driveway.
"I guess that means practice time if over," Xan laughed. "And it's nothing personal when Mace and I try wipe the court with you, OB. It isn't very often that we even have a chance to beat Quin."
"Nothing competitive about you guys, hey Quin," OB remarked as he gave the man a friendly slap on the back.
"Hey not me, it's those two who have to make everything a contest. I'm just out here to get a little exercise," Quin refuted.
Mace called out as he was walking up to the court. "Don't bullshit the kid, Quin. OB, just make sure you never bet on any activities you undertake with Quin - tennis, billiards, darts, cards - unless you're his partner, or you'll find yourself a lot poorer."
OB turned back to look at Quin, giving him a look that could only be considered lecherous then winking before looking back at Mace and replying, "Thanks for the advice, Mace, but except for maybe the tennis, I'm sure I can hold my own."
Mace pulled out his racket, held it between both hands behind his back, and worked through a series of quick stretches as he replied, "Don't say I didn't warn you."
Quin tried not to read too much into OB's suggestive look as they took their positions on the tennis court. Since Quin's team had won in the last encounter, the serve began with Xan. OB managed to return the serve but lost focus when it was returned to him and the score was fifteen/love. The first game was over without even having the serve change but at least OB and Quin had managed to get in a few volleys before conceding the points. The second game went almost as quickly with OB struggling to serve without faulting. The third game was a little better with Quin and OB actually managing to score before they were beaten. By the time they got to game six, they had actually brought the score to deuce twice before losing the game.
When the set was completed, Quin headed to cooler he had placed on the sidelines. He handed a plastic container of water to OB, took a few steps to hand one to both Xan and Mace as they approached and then opened his own. He took a long swallow before turning to OB. "You seemed to be getting the hang of it towards the end."
"Yeah, it was getting easier," OB replied after his own drink. "Though I hope you didn't bet too heavily on this match," he told Quin.
"Too bad I didn't think of it," Xan teased. "Though I'm sure I can find great pleasure in reminding you of the spectacular loss extensively over the next week."
Turning so that the other two men couldn't see his face, OB pierced Quin with a smoldering gaze and said softly, "I'll guess I'll just have to find some way to make it up to you."
Quin struggled not to choke on the sip of water he had just taken and could only smile in reply. He continued to drink his water in silence, his libido pressing him to tell his friends to get lost so that he could pursue the suggestive comment but he was pulled from his musing by Xan's voice. "Ready for another set."
He looked at OB, his smile letting the man know that there were other avenues he would prefer to be exploring, and said, "I'm game if you are?"
"Sure. Me mum would say that it's good to have your arse trounced on a regular basis," OB replied, sexual innuendo coloring the casual reply.
So the men resumed their positions on the tennis court and the next game began. These games were much closer that the first set, the points not as easily won and taking much longer but, in the end, Quin and OB still lost the set to Mace and Xan in six straight games.
OB collapsed bonelessly to the court after he missed the final volley and looked over to Quin. "Please tell me that you're a proper Irishman and have something more substantial than water for me to drown me sorrows in?"
"Definitely. Stay there lad and I will bring you something," Quin replied. He headed over to the chest cooler he kept beverages in, pulled out two bottles of Guinness, pried off the caps, then looked over at Xan and Mace. "What do you two heathens want since I've never managed to convert you to drinking proper beer?"
Xan walked casually over to join Quin at the cooler and made a pretense of looking over the selection as he said very softly, "The boy is a flirt. It'll be interesting to see if he ever puts his money where his mouth is."
"You wouldn't be willing to take Mace and head home so that I could find out?" Quin countered in the same low voice, knowing full well that his friend wouldn't take him seriously.
"Not on your life. I'm enjoying watching you squirm too much," Xan teased. "And you know what they say - half the fun is in the chase." He turned back to Mace, "Bud okay?" and when Mace nodded, he grabbed two bottles.
Not bothering to reply, Quin walked back to the court, asking, "Hope cold is all right," as he handed the younger man the bottle. "These swine have never converted me to drinking the piss-water they call beer but since living in the heat of California, I've decided that cold beer has its advantages. Or I can get you a warm one from the house?"
OB lifted the tail of his T-shirt, bringing it to his face to wipe off the sweat accumulated there, took a long swig from the bottle then placed the cold bottle against the back of his neck. "Cold will be just fine. Maybe later I'll take you up on the warm one."
"I don't think this'll be the last beer any of us drink today, OB, so you'll have your chance," Mace said, after downing half of his own beer.
"Great," OB replied before holding up his free hand towards Quin. "Any chance I could get a hand up? My body is rebelling against moving and if I don't get up soon, you'll just have to bury me here."
"Well, we wouldn't want that," Quin teased as he pulled the younger man to his feet.
Taking another long sip of his beer, OB favored the others with an appraising look before he complained, "And why is it that I'm the only one who's done for?"
"Yeah, I would have expected better from someone who's still in his twenties," Xan mocked.
"You mean besides the fact that those two bastards were taking advantage of your inexperience and making you run all over the court?" Quin rebutted as they made their way over to the poolside chairs.
"Consider it a right of initiation into the Saber Studio family," Mace said as he walked over to join them.
Lowering himself into a chaise lounge with a groan, OB shot Xan a glare. "I think I'll have to be a bit more cautious the next time someone asks me to join them for a 'friendly game of anything'. I have aching muscles in places where I didn't know I had muscles," he added with a wink at Quin.
"Sounds like you're bit out of shape. Maybe you should plan on joining us every Sunday as a form of exercise," Quin said, trying to act casual.
"I think I'll have to impose on you for another lesson before then so maybe that way we can win a game or two," OB asked.
"Anytime," Quin replied enthusiastically as he settled into his chair.
They sat there for quite a while just drinking their beer, catching their breath and chatting about nothing and anything. They shared two more rounds and then Quin got up from his chair. "I think I'll start the charcoal in the grill then go for a swim while the coals are heating. Anyone else?"
"I'd love to but I didn't bring a suit," OB replied.
Biting back the desire to say that he didn't need one, Quin said, "I always have an assortment of them in the cabana just for that reason, OB, so help yourself." Looking at Xan and Mace, he added, "Adelle washed yours for you and put them back in the normal place."
Turning towards the grill, Quin caught Xan's expression as he saw the look of surprise cross OB's face at the mention of a woman's name and was a bit shocked when Xan took pity on him. "Adelle is a sweetheart,” Xan said. "One of these days I am going to figure out what it'll take to steal her away from you. I want someone to dote over me for a change."
"You get that without paying her salary, Xan," Quin quipped. "She made you blueberry pie, cornbread and a pitcher of iced tea, spiced just the way you like it. But I agree that I would be lost without her," he added as he poured charcoal into the grill. In a matter of minutes, the fire was blazing and Quin went into the house to change into his suit.
OB went into the cabana Xan showed him, picked out a suit that he thought would fit out of the closet and changed into it. Both Xan and Mace had retreated to do the same by the time he came out, so he wandered over to the pool's edge. The water was crystal clear and inviting and he couldn't resist dipping his toes in.
"How's the water?" Quin asked as he approached.
" As warm as a bath," OB replied.
"The plus side of living in Southern California is that you don't need to heat the pool. The down side is that the house needs air conditioning," Quin replied.
"It's so different from home," OB said a bit dreamily. "I'm used to fog, rain and cold, not to mention swimming in lakes cold enough to cause extensive shrinkage," he added with a chuckle.
"I remember it well," Quin agreed. "The last time I went home, my brother talked me into going swimming in the lake and I was afraid for a second it would fall off."
Glancing down at the item in question, outlined by the semi-fitted swimsuit, OB whispered, "That would have been a real shame."
Before Quin could reply, Xan and Mace came over to join them. "So are we just going to look at the water all day or are we going in?" Xan asked.
" Definitely going in. You first." Quin's response was accompanied by a none too gentle push in the middle of Xan's back that sent him flailing into the pool and a second that sent Mace to join him. Quin glanced over at OB with a smile that was positively evil. "Payback is a wonderful thing."
"Remind me never to piss you off," OB remarked as he jumped into the pool.
"Don't think you could," Quin muttered to himself as he joined them.
The four of them remained in the pool for a while, swimming laps, floating or just standing in the waist deep section talking. Quin got out after about a half hour to get dinner but waved off the others when they would have joined him. "Enjoy the water while I throw the steaks on." After drying himself quickly, he wrapped the towel around his waist and headed into the house. Grabbing the paper wrapped packed from the refrigerator and the grill tongs, he made his way back to the grill and placed the steaks on it.
OB appeared at Quin's side as he turned back towards the house. "There must be something I can do to help you. I'm just a poor country boy and not used to having anyone but me mum wait on me." When Quin started to shake his head, OB added, "please, it would make me feel better."
"Well, there isn't much to do since Adelle prepared everything already," Quin explained. "All I need to do is bring out the dishes and grab some plates."
Wrapping his own towel around his waist, OB said, "Just show me what and where," and followed Quin into the house.
It didn't take long for the two men to gather up the things that Adelle had prepared and bring them and the required dishes and utensils out to the round table on the patio. While Quin went back to turn the steaks, OB set up a place setting at each seat then removed the covers from all the serving dishes. By the time Quin was bringing over the platter of steaks, the others had emerged from the pool and were walking towards the table.
Xan looked over the assortment of cold salads and baked goods arranged on the table and looked up at Quin beseechingly, "Any chance I could convince you to share Adelle with me?"
"The answer hasn't changed from the thousand times you have already asked me that question, Xani," Quin quipped. "Now sit and enjoy the fact that she made half of this stuff especially for you."
The four of them sat at the table and the conversation slowed as they enjoyed their dinner. The food was excellent and they were all famished after two sets of tennis and time swimming. By the time they were sharing dessert their dialogue had resumed, with the other three filling OB in on the various peculiarities of Saber Studios. The conversation continued while the men cleaned up from their meal and stacked the dishes in the dishwasher. When the clean up was complete, OB went for another quick swim while the others changed and he was the last to rejoin the group, redressed.
"Anyone up for a game of billiards or darts?" Quin asked and when everyone nodded they headed into the game room. Three of them grabbed a cold beer from the game room fridge while Quin got OB a bottle of warm Guinness. They played billiards first and true to his early comment OB held his own in the venue. He was again partnered with Quin and they managed to win all three games handily. More beer and kibitzing was shared as they moved on, though Xan and Mace were a little smarter when it came to darts, splitting the two men so that they wouldn't win again. The matches were close, with Quin and Mace winning the first one and Xan and OB winning the second.
Before they could begin the tiebreaker, Xan spoke. "I hate to break up the fun but I have a 5am start time for my shoot tomorrow, so I really need to call it a night." He turned to OB and added, "I'm sure Mace could drop you off later or you could catch a cab, so you don't need to leave just because I do."
Mace amended that statement quickly. "No, I need to take off as well. I have an audition for a part at 8am and I need my beauty sleep."
"I can take you home, OB, or call you a cab," Quin assured, his expression showing that he really hoped the younger man would stay.
"I wish I could," OB maintained, "but I have to be at the studio for 6am myself."
Xan and Mace looked at each other then back at Quin and it seemed they decided to finally give him a break. "OB, I'll meet you at the car. We need to grab our rackets from the court," Xan said, disappearing up the stairs before OB could reply.
"Another time then," Quin said politely.
OB took a couple steps forward and looked intently into the older man's eyes. "You don't know how badly I want to stay, to have some time alone with you and get to know you better." Disappointment shone in his green eyes and it was plain to see that he didn't want to leave. "But I'm just starting out here and I can't afford to show up at anything less than my best. That means getting a full night's sleep." He placed his hand on Quin's arm, running his palm softly along the firm bicep. "And if I stayed, I don't think sleep would be high on the priority list. Please ask me again, sometime."
Quin covered the hand on his arm with his own and replied, "I understand. You have to do what's best. And don't worry, I'll ask again."
Hiding his dismay, Quin accompanied OB outside to where Xan and Mace were waiting and said his good-byes, standing in the driveway until both vehicles had disappeared though the gate. He secured the gate from the secondary panel in the house, locked the doors, set the alarms and headed straight for his bedroom. He poured about two inches of Black Bush Irish Whiskey into the bottom of a glass, sipping the amber liquid and savoring the burn of the potent liquid flowing down his throat as he stripped. His mind was reeling, all of OB's suggestive comments and flirty innuendoes replaying themselves over and over, until they faded to that final tender admission. Glass empty, he slid into bed, staring unseeing at the ceiling for long time before finally drifting into a very restless sleep.
Memories of another night of sensual dreams starring OB filled Quin's mind as the morning sun filtered into his room. Again he was hard and aching and he wondered how long this was going to continue. He ignored his erection while he called Kirk Mundi, letting him know that he was interested in the role and to set up a meeting with Sacul, later today if possible. That done, he headed into the shower to get cleaned up and to take care his body's demands.
Adelle was making breakfast by the time Quin dressed and head downstairs. In a repeat of Saturday, she placed his regular breakfast in front of him along with coffee and the Los Angeles Times. His leisurely breakfast ended when Kirk Mundi called to tell him an appointment had been set for 2pm. His agent wanted them to meet to discuss the situation first so they made plans to meet for lunch at Sardi's.
Having a couple of hours to kill and feeling somewhat restless, Quin changed into a swimsuit and headed out to the pool to do some laps. He stayed in the pool for about an hour then spent the next hour returning tennis balls lobbed at him by his practice machine. His excess energy worked off, he showered again and dressed in a light blue button down shirt, gray slacks and a navy blue sport jacket for the meeting.
After saying goodbye to Adelle, Quin headed to the garage and slid behind the wheel of his Jaguar XKE. Although he had a nice house by most standards, with the pool, tennis court and game room, it was nothing like some of the mansions other actors of his caliber had and this car was his only true extravagance. He was very possessive of the car, never letting anyone else drive it, and had it cleaned and waxed at least once a week. In keeping with that, he started the car, letting the engine warm up for a full five minutes before pulling out of the garage.
He took the long way to Sardi's, making the most of the drive, and pulling into the reserved space the valet pointed out at exactly noon. The maitre d' led him to the table where Kirk was sitting with a glass of Black Bush Irish Whiskey already set at the empty place. "Afternoon, Quin," Kirk said in greeting and they got right down to business.
They spent the next hour and a half working through all the details of the contract for the role. Many of the items were standard, things that Kirk knew his client wanted or that the agent felt were important for someone of Quin's status. Quin asked for a couple of additional things, including Xan's suggestion of artistic license though not for the reason his friend had mentioned, and he knew that as long as his requests were reasonable they would be granted.
When they had ironed out everything Quin wanted, they left the restaurant in Quin's Jag and headed to the studio. The gate guard recognized Quin's car and waved them in and he pulled into a space in the reserved parking area. It was a short walk to Sacul's office and the secretary showed them right in.
Jorge Sacul stood up and smiled warmly as the two men entered. "Afternoon Quin. I must say I was very pleased when Kirk called this morning to say you had reconsidered the part."
"Yes, on rereading, I found the part very intriguing," Quin replied, then sat back as Kirk and Jorge began the negotiations.
It took a little over an hour but the contract was signed to everyone's satisfaction and they shared a drink to celebrate. "We will be shooting the upstate New York scenes first as we want to be finished before the summer tourist season starts. Now that the final major role has been cast we can make the arrangements. Hopefully we can start shooting by the beginning of next week."
"I don't have anything coming up that can't be rescheduled, so just make sure I have two days notice for when I need to fly out," Quin agreed.
Jorge consented to that and Quin and Kirk left his office. They had only gone a few feet when Kirk said, "I need to go and speak to one of the casting directors for another client, so I'll talk to you later."
"Okay, later," Quin replied as he continued down the hallway. He had made it back to the main lobby when he caught a glimpse of a familiar figure a few feet in front of him. "OB?"
The handsome Scotsman turned around and flashed him a warm smile. "Quin, what are you doing here?"
"I could ask you the same thing?" Quin countered as he closed the distance between them.
"I came in so that the wardrobe mistress could get my measurements," OB replied. "You?"
" Signed a contract for my next role," Quin answered.
"Great, for what?" OB asked.
"Sacul's new film," Quin replied casually.
It took a moment, but understanding soon dawned on OB's eyes. "The same one I signed for?" he asked, needing to be sure he hadn't misunderstood.
"One and the same. Looks like we'll be spending quite a bit of time together," Quin said. He looked around and saw that they we alone in the lobby. "Maybe we should have dinner together tonight and discuss our roles," he added with a wink.
The smile faded almost immediately. "I wish I could but I need to head back to the other soundstage for some night filming for the walk-on I was on this morning."
"Another time, then," Quin said as he had the previous evening.
OB walked over to the reception desk, grabbed a piece of paper and a pen, scribbled out something and then brought it back to Quin. "Here's my number. Call me tomorrow, please."
Quin grabbed the pen, ripped the paper in half, wrote out his number and handed the piece of paper back to OB. "Here's mine."
"Thanks," OB replied, the smile firmly entrenched again as he tucked the phone number into his pant's pocket. "I really need to go. Talk to you later."
"Later," Quin answered as the younger man walked out the door. Swallowing his frustration at being thwarted yet again, he shoved the paper in his pocket and headed for his car, planning to drive home by the most scenic route he could find.
The rest of the week went no better when it came to finding a time that both men were free. Paul Koon had arranged two more bit parts for OB so he was filming Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and Quin spent his free time memorizing his lines for the New York shoot. Quin had a charity dinner for the St. Jude Children's hospital on Tuesday night, and Koon dragged OB off to a party on Wednesday. Thursday found Quin at one of Adelle's children's college graduation and by Friday morning OB was on a plane to New York, having been sent to the location early with the stunt director to get in some practice riding the vintage motorcycle. So instead of the intimate dinners at his home that Quin had imagined, they settled for sporadic telephone conversations.
Erotic dreams filled Quin's sleep and he woke each morning either having spent himself into the sheets or hard and aching and needing to masturbate before he could start his day. It had been years since he had felt both so sexually frustrated and so enamored with someone and the only thing getting him through was the knowledge he had gleaned from the phone calls that said OB seemed to be just as affected. He only hoped he could hold out until fate stopped interfering and allowed them to act on their attraction.
Quin spent a quiet day on Saturday, played a very uninspired round of tennis with Xan on Sunday morning then finished packing for his 2pm flight to New York. He brought a book to read on the plane but he had trouble concentrating, visions of OB from over a week of dreams flashing through his mind at the most inopportune moments. He was glad that the seat beside his in first class was empty and that, as they got closer to the East Coast, the cabin was darkened and blankets were handed out for those who wanted to nap. Otherwise he would have been hard pressed to explain how reading Anton Chekhov's 'Neighbours' was causing the obvious bulge in the front of his pants.
With the time change, it was after 11pm when the plane touched down at LaGuardia Airport. Quin had been given the option of staying overnight at one of the airport's prestigious hotels but since to his body it was still only 7pm, he opted to go directly to the shoot location. The limousine driver was waiting for him at the gate and within fifteen minutes his luggage had been retrieved and they started on the five-hour drive to the Saratoga Lake location Jorge Sacul's team had obtained for the shoot.
Quin dosed off and on during the ride since he was the only passenger in the vehicle and the back seat was roomy and comfortable. Luckily what dreams he had were not too intense and he managed to keep his body from reacting to the images. He arrived at the complex to find the majority of the crew already asleep and only the casting director waiting to meet him. He was quickly escorted to what must have been the master bedroom in this turn of the century summer home, complete with a fireplace, a canopy bed and a small private balcony. The room was decorated in what would have been extravagance during the thirties and forties and he felt like he had already stepped into the pages of the film.
As he undressed for bed, part of him wondered where OB's room was but he knew he couldn't ask without arousing suspicion just as the younger man could not have looked too interested in Quin's arrival. Although he had given OB the information when they last spoke on Thursday evening, there was no way to arrange a casual meeting between them at 4am. Having reviewed the shooting schedule during the early part of his drive, Quin made a mental note of the times of OB's scenes as he slid under the covers and went to sleep planning his first on-set appearance to coincide with one of those times.
It was almost noon when Quin awoke and looked over at the bedside alarm clock. He was a bit surprised he had slept that late. Even though his body was still on West Coast time, the sun filtering into a room usually woke him. He slipped out of bed, pulled on his briefs, and after a quick trip to the bathroom, he pushed back the drapes and slid open the door to the small balcony to figure out why the sun hadn't roused him. The day was bright when he stepped through the doors, but he saw that the canopy of tall trees surrounding the house and the fact that the room faced west accounted for his oversleeping. He took a moment to breathe in some lungfuls of the crisp clean air then walked back into his bedroom. It took only about fifteen minutes to brush his teeth, shower, and shave and then he was pulling clothing out of one of his suitcases.
Dressed in an open collared white cotton shirt, snug fitting jeans and loafers, Quin headed down to the dining area he had been shown when he arrived. He stopped to greet a number of people as he walked through the room even as he discreetly scanned the area for OB. A buffet table had been set up in the opening between the kitchen and dining room and Jorge Sacul waved him over to the line when he caught sight of him.
"Any problems on your trip up here?" Sacul asked as he grabbed a glass of iced tea from the table.
"Both were pretty run of the mill," Quin replied. "And driving during the wee hours of the morning sure lessens the traffic." He glanced at the assortment of lunch items displayed on the table and added, "Though my stomach is looking for bacon, eggs and pan fries."
"The down side of traveling to the East Coast," Sacul replied. "I'm sure the cook could rustle some up for you."
"No, I might as well make the adjustment to eastern time now, especially since I have a 7am call tomorrow morning," Quin rejoined.
"True enough," Sacul said. "By the way, there were a couple of minor rewrites done since you got your script so I'll have a new copy sent to your room this afternoon. Enjoy your lunch. It's time for me to head back to the set."
When Sacul left, Quin headed for the buffet table and filled a plate before turning around to find a place to sit. He had just about given up on his search for OB when an echo of the man's laughter filled the room. Glancing to the back corner, he caught sight of him sitting in a group of other actors and walked over to their table. Addressing his question to the only person in the group he had worked with before, he asked the brunette actress who would be playing his wife, "Is there room for one more?"
"Quin, darling, do join us. Did you just arrive?" Dena Billings trilled in her Hollywood falsetto as she pointed to the empty chair beside her.
"I got in very early this morning," Quin replied. He leaned down and kissed her obligingly on each cheek then took the indicated seat. He placed his plate and mug of coffee on the table and shook hands with the three men across the table as Dena introduced them. When she motioned to the person on his other side, he interrupted, "Mr. Kendrick and I have already met." Years in the limelight made it easy to hide his excitement and appear casual as he held out his hand. "Good to see you again, OB. Hope that ancient motorcycle hasn't been giving you too hard a time."
"Not too hard," OB said as he absently rubbed his left hip.
"Don't let him kid you, Quin," the ash-blond across from him retorted. "That bike has thrown him more times than a wild horse being tamed."
"It's not that bad," OB countered.
"Bad enough that you've taken to wearing stunt padding under your practice leathers," Brock replied.
Knowing that denials would only prolong the teasing, OB changed his tactic. "Just protecting my assets," he chuckled, allowing the fingers that had been massaging his hip to brush against Quin's leg. "Wouldn't want to disappoint the millions of young lassies who'll be mooning after me when I become a big star."
"If you become a star, OB," Brock taunted.
"All I can do is try," OB replied seriously then winked at Quin. "That and use my accent to charm all the American lassies," he added, his Scottish brogue even thicker than it naturally was.
Brock rolled his eyes and mumbled but let the subject drop and the rest of the conversation was spent filling Quin in on what had been filmed that morning. OB quickly finished his lunch and got up. "I need to get back to the set. See you all later," he said though his eyes were focused on Quin.
Quin remained in the dining area for another hour, talking with a number of people who came in and out of the room. He had worked with many of the production crew on other films and they liked him and went out of their way for him because he treated them with respect, unlike many other actors and actresses of his stature. He knew that each day's menus would include some of his favorites, Black Bush Irish Whiskey would always be available in his room and in the recreation area and anything he could want or need would be obtained if humanly possible. All because he had treated people as they deserved to be treated.
When the occupants of the room had thinned substantially, Quin headed over to the wardrobe area to get his final fittings out of the way. The entire process took about an hour. Though most of the clothing made according to the standard measurements on file with the studio's main wardrobe mistress fit properly, a few needed slight alterations. One jacket needed to be fitted a bit more, a pair of pants lengthened a bit so they would bunch a bit on the top of his shoes as the style warranted and two shirts needed the sleeves lengthened. After he was finished, he moved quietly onto the outdoor set.
Settling into a chair under a shade tree, Quin watched as OB and the young actress who was playing the don's daughter worked through a scene on the lakeshore. The two were suppose to be sharing a romantic picnic lunch on a warm summer day and the May winds were playing havoc with the filming. He selected his position off to the side so he didn't make the others nervous and he could watch unobserved. OB handled each inconvenience without distress, calming the young actress when she got frustrated, and this behavior was very telling of the young Scotsman's character. After the fourth take, Quin found his mind wandering as he imagined OB's tender touches and soft words were directed at him, not as part of the scene but as reality. He had become so lost in the pleasant fantasy that he almost didn't notice one of the co-directors approaching him.
"I have a feeling that after this film is released, he'll be Saber Studios' newest heartthrob," Nate Gunman said as he reached Quin's side.
"He's a natural," Quin replied, still looking at OB. He and Nate Gunman had crossed swords on more than one occasion and he knew that there was more to this than polite chit-chat.
"He may actually be competition for some of the studios' big names," Nate said, his intent evident even in the genteel words.
Ignoring the personal jab, Quin rose from his chair and countered, "I'll have to alert Mace, Ethan and Xan to be on their toes. Now if you'll excuse me, I think I'll go review my scenes for tomorrow." With that exit line, he turned and walked back to the house being used as a crew residence.
Quin politely avoided everyone who wanted to make small talk and headed straight for his room. He knew one of the production assistants had been in there as his bottle of Black Bush was sitting on a tray with an ice bucket and glasses and his clothing had been unpacked and placed in the chest and closet. Everyone knew he preferred to dress off set, so most of the costumes for this segment of filming had been brought up as well and only the items being altered were missing. The revised version of the script was also on his dresser so he poured a drink and settled onto the small couch to check it over. He remained in his room until he started hearing more noise coming from downstairs, which meant the crew was coming in from the set for dinner.
The seating arrangements at dinner were a bit more formal. He smiled politely as he walked passed OB's group and took his place at Jorge's table, stifling his sigh of regret. Dinner passed in a flurry of industry talk and as people finished their meals, they broke off into smaller groups to head to the small game room the crew had put together. By the time Jorge headed back to his room and Quin was able to make it downstairs, there were a couple tables of poker games, some guys playing dice and a group gathered around the dartboard.
"Quin, come over here. We need your talents," one of the older British cameramen called out.
"And just exactly what kind of talent are you looking for, Sam, old buddy," Quin joked as he reached the group.
"This young pup has been bleeding us dry and we need a fresh challenger," Sam replied, pointing to the pile of bills on the edge of the table. He turned to OB, adding a friendly taunt, "The luck of the leprechaun is with Quin so I expect the tide will be turning for you, boy."
"I'm game if you are, Quin," OB said. "Wouldn't want anyone to think that I'd run off with my winnings when the heavier competition shows up." His smile widened as he looked up at Quin and added, "Plus everyone knows that Scotsmen are better dart players than Irishmen."
"Is that so?" Quin refuted dryly, even though he was glad to find an innocent excuse to spend time with the younger man. He reached into his pants pocket, pulled out a one hundred dollar bill, tossed it on the table beside OB's pile and slowly began rolling up the sleeves of his shirt. "Well, we'll just have to see whether the Irish or the Scot is the better player, Mr. Kendrick."
"That we will," OB replied, his eyes sparkling with amusement. "Best three out of five, winner must win by two."
"Agreed," Quin said as he poured himself a glass of Black Bush and looked around the room until he caught sight of the person he wanted. "Lizette, did you unpack for me?" When the woman nodded, he asked, "There was a small gray zippered case in my bag. Since you know exactly where you put it, would you mind getting it for me?"
"Sure, Quin," Lizette replied as she hurried out of the room.
"You brought your darts?" OB asked, his confident smile fading a bit.
"Of course. Sam always sets up a dart board when we're on location," Quin replied matter of factly.
OB looked from Quin to Sam and back again. "Why am I beginning to feel like I've been set up?"
"Not set up exactly, since I had no idea you'd been hustling these poor suckers. I would say it's more like getting your due," Quin countered.
"Hustling is such a dirty word," OB argued, his smile blossoming again. "They asked if I played, suggested we place a wager to make things more interesting and I agreed."
Remembering a conversation he'd had with OB over the phone last week, Quin decided to tease the younger man. "I assume you neglected to inform them that you were junior county champ at fifteen and ranked in the top five for your county's pub circuit by twenty-four," he rejoined with a slight smirk.
"You don't survive long in the Scottish countryside without keeping a few things under wraps," OB said with a wink. When OB caught sight of Lizette coming into the room carrying Quin's dart case, he met Quin's eyes and added, "And it looks like all my hidden skills will soon be put to the test."
Quin took a long swallow from his whiskey glass and took the case from Lizette, all the while silently saluting the young Scotsman's wit. OB had the art of inconspicuous flirting down to a science, choosing words and phrases that would convey suggestiveness to him while appearing as macho bantering to those around them. Unzipping his dart case, he continued their sensual repartee. "I'm certain you'll find my own skills equal to the task."
Quin walked over to join OB at the throwing line Sam had placed on the floor with duct tape. He positioned his feet behind the line and looked up at the younger man. "Challenger goes first?"
"Definitely. Standard rules to 301?" OB asked and when Quin nodded the game was underway.
The first ten games were won in nine throws with the person starting winning each one. The next few games were a bit longer but the lead continued to shift from one to the other, neither of them able to win two games in a row. At one point around game sixteen, Quin thought he actually might manage to win but OB pulled out the game with his last throw. As the time passed and the games continued, the occupancy of the rec room thinned until by midnight only Quin and OB remained.
"I think the only way we'll break this stalemate it to raise the stakes," OB announced after Quin won game seventeen. "Something that'll be an added incentive for us."
"And what would you suggest to provide that additional incentive?" Quin asked.
After looking around the room to make sure they we still alone, OB took a step closer to Quin, ran one hand along the older man's flank, looked intently into the blue eyes and proposed, "The loser could provide a more personal compensation to the winner, the time and exact activities at the winner's discretion of course."
Quin stared into the sparkling gray-green eyes looking at him, fighting his desire to throw caution to the wind and take up the younger man's suggestive offer here and now. After a few moments, he got himself under control and replied softly, "That's a rather ambiguous wager. It could put the loser and, even the winner, into a very vulnerable position."
"Or a very amiable one. The most important things in life are never attained without taking risks," OB said in a husky tone. His face shifted into a shy but somewhat uncertain smile as he added, "Unless I'm misreading the situation?"
"No, you're not," Quin answered. He placed a hand on OB's shoulder and added, "Though it may be some time before the winner can collect on his wager."
"Anticipation can be highly appealing," OB countered, continuing to run his hand along Quin's hip.
"Or frustrating as hell," Quin quipped as he allowed his hand to slip from OB's shoulder to sweep across the younger man's chest. "But since I wouldn't want to be accused of backing down from a wager, I agree to the increased stakes, to be collected at a more prudent time."
OB suck in a deep breath, as if fighting off the effects of Quin's touch, and moved back to the throwing line to take his first shot.
This game was not so quickly settled either. Whether it was the additional wager, the teasing banter or just fatigue taking its toll wasn't clear but each man's aim was slightly off. By the time they each needed less than fifty points to reach 301, they both found their turns negated when they couldn't come up with the exact combination of points they needed to win. It was less stressful for Quin since he was up by one game and a loss would only tie the match. OB, on the other hand, was in a do or die situation, so to speak, and seemed very frustrated when he couldn't hit the correct blocks on the board.
The stalemate continued for seven turns until Quin finally managed to get the exact combination of twenty-one he needed from his three throws. Pulling his darts from the board, he walked over to the table and began putting them back into the case as he gloated a bit. "Well, it looks like the additional wager was just what I needed." He picked up his hundred dollar bill and held out his hand for the other one OB pulled out of his pile before adding, "I'll look forward to collecting on the second portion of our bet at a later time."
"And I'll look forward to settling my debt," OB drawled as he placed the other set of darts back into their case and jammed the rest of his winnings into his jeans pocket. "Hopefully an opportunity will present itself before too long."
With nothing left to be said, the two men headed from the recreation room. The bedroom that Quin had been assigned was on the second floor so they reached his first. "If I didn't have an early call…" He allowed the sentence to trail off when he saw someone coming down the hallway towards them and began a new one as he opened his door. "Thanks for the competition and for making me a hundred dollars richer, Mr. Kendrick."
"Maybe you can give me the chance to recoup my losses, Mr. Jinnai?" OB asked as he took a couple steps further down the hallway.
"Or add to my winnings. Either way I am up for a rematch as soon as our schedules allow it," Quin retorted with a smile. He stood in the doorway a few seconds longer then closed the door behind him as OB disappeared around a corner.
Quin poured himself a glass of ice water as he undressed, his early call making him refrain from the nightcap he would have preferred. The night's entertainment had been fun, the dart games challenging and the conversation interesting but the suggestive by-play of the last hour had left him more than a little frustrated and he expected that OB was feeling pretty much the same.
It took him only a few minutes to go through his nightly routine. Grabbing a hand towel from the bathroom as he exited, Quin slipped into his bed and pondered those last few minutes. The fact that he had actually contemplated inviting OB into his room in this setting where very little went unnoticed spoke volumes about the depth of his attraction to the Scotsman and that thought both panicked and excited him. It had been years since he had allowed attraction for anyone to take precedence over the need to keep his sexual preferences carefully concealed.
And the risk for OB would be even greater. Quin had years of his fastidiously cultivated persona to refute any gossip that could surface but the young actor would have no such protection. The slightest blemish to the man's reputation could end his career before it truly began and he wondered if OB really understood the risk he was taking. Replaying the man's teasing in his mind, the sensual tones as he said, "The most important things in life are never attained without taking risks", went straight to his groin and Quin's hand slipped downward of its own volition. As he stroked his hardening flesh, he wondered if OB was doing the same and the thought aroused him further. The tone of those repeating words reinforced that possibility and he closed his eyes, imagining the mischievous smile and sparkling green eyes behind his closed lids. In a matter of seconds he was coming over his hand, the name "OB" on his lips as the handsome face filled his mind.
Quin used the towel he had brought to bed to clean his hand and stomach when his breathing finally slowed. As he tossed the towel to the floor and pulled the blankets up over his body, he realized that OB needed his protection even more than he needed him as a lover. He promised himself that he would find the time to talk to OB, to make sure the younger man realized the risks he was taking. He would school OB as he had Xan in his younger days, explaining how the industry worked and what games he would need to play to keep any inkling of suspicion from clouding his career. Only when he was certain the Scotsman understood all the risks inherent in proceeding and they had taken every precaution possible to keep anyone from discovering a liaison between them would he even consider them continuing. As he drifted off to sleep with his newly made resolve, he just hoped that he wouldn't succumb to the younger man's charms before he could make good on his private vow.
Morning found Quin on the set and too busy to even think about his previous night's ponderings. His first scene went fairly well but as they began working on the second Sacul realized that it wouldn't work the way it had been scripted. Sacul called the screenwriter onto the set and he spent some time working on revising dialog as well as positioning for the living room scene between Leone and his wife, Sienna. The retakes took most of the day with only a short break to have lunch brought onto the set. The problems set the filming behind schedule and they didn't start on the scenes between Leone and his daughter, Nicole, until almost 3pm.
Quin caught sight of OB standing at the edge of the set a couple of times but he was never able to step away to speak with him. By the time they stopped for the day, Quin was worn out and when he didn't see OB in the dining room, he threw a few items on a plate and headed straight to his bedroom. He had an early call again tomorrow so he needed to get a good night's sleep. He poured himself a drink, drank it while eating his dinner and in fifteen minutes was climbing into bed.
The next day was better. Quin actually had time to go to the dining room for lunch and had finished his day's filming by 3pm. He watched a couple other scenes being filmed then went back to his room to relax for a while before dinner. He was on his second drink and had read about forty pages in his book from the plane trip when someone knocked on his door. "Yes?" he called out, turning back the corner of the page he was reading to mark it.
The door opened inward and OB poked his head inside. "Mr. Jinnai, I'm having trouble with my lines for our scene and I wondered if you would have time to work on them with me?"
Quin caught sight of a couple of people walking past the open door and fought his smile as he realized that OB had just come up with a plausible excuse for them to spend time together. "Sure OB, I have a few minutes. Come on in."
Closing the door casually behind him, OB entered the room, script in hand, and walked over to where Quin was seated. Dropping onto the small couch beside the other man, OB turned to the page of the aforementioned scene and placed the script into his lap. "It's been hard to find the right pace for our exchange. I was hoping some practice might help me to hit upon the correct tempo." As OB spoke the words he inched a little closer until his lips were a hairsbreadth away from Quin's. "I've been told practice makes perfect," he whispered before covering Quin's mouth in a gentle kiss.
The kiss was everything he had imagined and more, and Quin found himself swept up in the wonderful sensations. His lips parted easily as OB's tongue teased along them and the kiss deepened. He followed that questing tongue back into OB's mouth, taking time to taste and explore as the younger man had. By the time they finally broke the kiss, they were both gasping and panting.
"I've wanted to do that since the first moment I met you at the party," OB drawled. "No, that's not true. I've been fantasizing about you since the first moment I realized me willy was meant for something other than pissing."
That crass comment brought Quin's resolution from two nights ago back with a vengeance and he held OB back with a hand to his shoulder when he tried to continue the kiss. "We need to talk," Quin rasped as he fought his own desires.
"The first privacy we've had in two weeks and you want to talk," OB grumbled. "I must be losing my touch."
"This is important," Quin insisted, taking one of the younger man's hands in his. "I am strongly attracted to you, have been since the moment I saw you that first night. I arranged our introduction to check you out and see if you might be interested in getting to know me a little better." He held up his hand to stop OB from interrupting and continued, "Please, let me finish. These past two weeks of casual contact and cheeky flirting have made me realize that I want more than a quick fling with you. We have a lot in common that could provide the solid basis for a deeper relationship. And if that is something you want as well, that is much more risky than a one night stand."
OB chewed on his bottom lip and ran his thumb over the back of Quin's hand as he considered the older man's words. "I never let myself even think about anything more," he admitted sheepishly. "You're fucking 'Quinlan Jinnai' and, even though I can blarney with the best of 'em, I'm still a kid from the Scottish backwater. Why in the hell would I think that I could be anything more than a quick roll in the hay for you?" he argued, his expression one of total disbelief. "When I realized that you were taken with me, I decided to use my dashing good looks and settle for what I could get - hopefully a night or two of mind blowing sex to fuel my fantasies for the next few years," he confessed, looking down in obvious embarrassment.
Quin reached up with his free hand and lifted up OB's chin so he could meet his gaze. "I think you are underestimating your charms, OB. Though I must admit it was the handsome package that attracted my attention in the first place, I find myself wanting to get to know the man behind that bewitching smile and enticing ass even more."
"Hopefully you haven't totally lost interest in having me arse?" OB quipped.
Quin realized OB was using humor to hide his nervousness at the serious turn of this conversation. "Don't worry, I'm still gummin' to put me langer up your gicker," Quin said with a leer, his brogue much thicker much than normal with the Irish slang. "But before that can happen, you need to understand the risks," he added. "Hollywood may be a little more broad minded than the rest of the world but that doesn't mean a person can be open about being queer."
"I've been in my share of scraps with those thick enough to blab about me liking it up the arse so I can take care of myself," OB huffed defensively.
"Proving your manhood in a bar brawl with some drunken wanker is not going to cut it here," Quin argued, his normally refined speech becoming rougher in his frustration. "You need to be dog wide on this. If someone were to find out you're a poof, your acting career would be over."
That comment stopped OB cold and he sat for a moment before asking anxiously, "You seem to be doing okay. How have you managed all these years?"
" By playing the game, choosing my friends very carefully and keeping my private life very private," Quin replied. "I'm not saying I no longer want to bend you over a chair and shag you senseless," he admitted, with a smile. "But you have the potential to be a star and this picture is the first step for you along that road. I wouldn't be much of a bloody mate if I didn't make you aware of the risks."
"Okay, I promise I'll be careful and pay attention when you show me the ropes," OB agreed seriously. "But where does that leave us now?"
Quin rose from the couch, walked over to the door and turned the lock. "With a couple hours of free time before dinner that we could put to good use unless you've changed your mind."
OB stood up and stalked over to where Quin was standing and pushed him against the wall between the bedroom and bathroom. He pressed the full length of his body against Quin's, rocking gently as he pulled him down for a probing kiss. When he had finished his intense exploration of Quin's mouth, he whispered huskily, "I find your goal of a deeper relationship enthralling." Reaching between them to stroke the already hardening cock encased in Quin's now tighter jeans, he added, "I would like to experience the depth of your plans, first hand."
"Your hand isn't quite what I had in mind," Quin quipped before latching onto OB's neck, biting gently and then laving the bites marks with his tongue.
OB stifled his disappointment when the lips at his neck pulled back without marking him. He gazed heatedly up at Quin and drawled seductively, "Plus I still have a wager to pay up on." OB started walking backwards towards the couch they had just vacated, looking over his shoulder to make sure he didn't trip on anything but only turning them around when he had reached it. Pushing Quin down onto the couch, he settled into his lap and resumed kissing him breathless.
By the time OB pulled back from the kiss, he had unbuttoned Quin's shirt and jeans and was stroking the still cloth covered column of flesh exposed by the jeans' open zipper. "In order to start our association on a more even keel, I'd like to settle my debt before we take this any further. So what'll it be, Quin?"
Quin grabbed OB's wrist, pulling his hand away from his rampant erection and choked out, "First you bitch because I want to talk and now you want me to think? Fuck, OB, you're lucky I didn't come in my pants from you rubbing against me as we kissed."
Sliding off Quin's lap and onto his knees in front of the couch, OB rubbed his cheek again the bulge in Quin's briefs and remarked provocatively, "That would have been a waste, wouldn't it." Turning his face, he ran his tongue over the white fabric covering Quin's cock before adding, "How about I suck you off? I'm eager to find out if the rest of you tastes as good as your mouth. It could serve as a down payment until a time when you can think more clearly."
"A time when all the blood from my brain isn't settled in my cock?" Quin laughed. "With you around, I fear those times will be few and far between."
OB slid his hand inside the briefs and stroked slowly. "So can I take that as a yes?" Accepting Quin's silence as tacit agreement, he nudged him to lift his hips and pulled down the jeans and briefs. When they were down to Quin's thighs, he leaned in and nuzzled his face into the brown curls. He lapped up the drop of fluid that had pooled in the tiny slit then began running his tongue slowly along the thick cock. "Yummy," he breathed before engulfing the full length in his mouth.
From then on, the only sounds in the room were Quin's soft moans and groans as OB pleasured him. As with everything Quin had seen the young Scotsman undertake so far, he performed the task with a single-minded focus that bordered on obsession. OB managed to find every one of his sensitive spots within minutes and he knew that he wouldn't last very long at this rate so he just gave himself over to the pleasure. "Yes. That's it. Oh yeah," he muttered softly between gasps of breaths and he could almost feel his lover smiling around his cock. "So good," he whispered as he thrust gently into the wet heat, hands grasping the arms of the couch in a white-knuckled grip. Then OB began to hum and the vibration was all it took to push him over the edge. Within seconds he was coming, his back arching to press his cock deeper into OB's throat as his semen pulsed into OB's mouth.
OB sucked gently at the penis in his mouth until it had softened completely and Quin's tremors had faded. OB pulled back but before Quin could say anything, there was a knock at the door. "Mr. Jinnai, Mr. Sacul needs you down on the set," a female voice announced politely.
After gulping in a couple of deep breaths to calm himself, Quin rejoined, "My scenes are done for today."
"There was a problem with the film on the last segment you filmed so it needs to be reshot and Mr. Sacul wants to get it in before the sun goes down," she explained.
Stifling his sigh of disappointment, Quin agreed. "Tell him I'll be there within fifteen minutes. I need to get into costume," he said, relieved that his voice sounded relatively normal.
"I'll tell him," she replied and they could hear her footsteps fading off down the hallway.
"I'm sorry," Quin said before kissing the younger man still kneeling between his legs. He slid his hand down to reach OB's groin and added, "At least let me return the favor before I have to go."
Blushing a very endearing shade of red, OB grabbed Quin's hand, pressed it more firmly against his now damp jeans. "No need," he admitted sheepishly before chuckling somewhat derisively. "I can't say I precisely remember the last time I came into my pants without so much as a touch but I'm sure it was way before I was legal."
"Must be my animal magnetism," Quin quipped before taking another quick kiss.
"Whatever it was, it was damn good though I must admit I'm looking forward to discovering how much better it'll be when you're touching me," OB retorted with lecherous grin as he propelled himself to his feet.
"I'll try to insure that your expectations are filled to the fullest," Quin returned with a very similar look. "Now I'd better get cleaned up and dressed," he added as he got up from the couch.
"And I'd better go," OB said half-heartedly as he watched Quin step out of the jeans pooled at his feet. "If I stay here while you change, I'm sure I'll need to take you up on your offer of reciprocating." He closed the distance between them in one step and kissed Quin passionately. "I'll see you at dinner or for darts later if king Jorge makes you sit at his table again tonight." He pulled his t-shirt out of his pants to cover the wet stain gracing the front of his jeans, grab his discarded script and headed to the door. He blew out a kiss before unlocking and opening door. "Thanks for the help with my lines, Quin," he called out before closing the door behind him.
Quin stared at the closed door for a moment, struggling to bury his frustration at their plans falling through yet again before pulling off his shirt and heading into the shower.
Neither a shared dinner nor time playing darts was in the cards for Quin and OB that evening. They had just about finished Quin's retake from earlier when one of the technical advisors came looking for Sacul. He informed him that the weatherman was predicting rain for the following evening, which was when they were scheduled to film the final group of outdoor evening shots. Within moments, Sacul had organized the crew and those scenes were rescheduled to be filmed that night.
OB had two nighttime scenes to film and Quin had one but neither of them were together. Quin watched as OB did the first scene on the motorcycle, impressed that the younger man now seemed very confident on the old machine. His scene by the lake edge was filmed next and he caught a glimpse of OB watching at one point but he couldn't even acknowledge him.
Meal breaks were rotated so that they could keep filming and Quin was heading into the dining area after his scene just as OB was leaving. By the time Quin finished his meal and headed back outside, the crew was being loaded onto the barge they would use to film the lake scene and OB and the actress playing the Don's daughter were climbing into the small motorboat. He watched from the shore for a few minutes but knowing that these types of scenes could take hours to get in the can, he headed back to his room as the boats reached the middle of the lake.
Quin poured himself a drink as he stripped out of his costume, pulled on a pair of shorts and then settled onto the couch with his book. Memories of the afternoon filled him and he had a difficult time concentrating on the words. After reading the same passage four times and still not having a clue as to what Chekhov was trying to say he gave up, placing the book on the table and closing his eyes. Images from earlier appeared behind his closed lids - OB straddling his lap kissing him, OB kneeling on the floor with Quin's cock in his mouth, the cute blush that had spread over OB's face when he realized he had come in his pants. These delightful images, combined with the memory of the pleasure he had felt, increased Quin's discontent that their plans were aborted while causing the expected physical reaction.
Rising from the couch, Quin pushed back the heavy drapes, opened the door and slipped out onto the small balcony, hoping beyond hope that the scene had gone better then expected. The spotlights they were using to film made it easier to see what was happening and it was evident that they were nowhere near finished. He watched absently for a while, imagining what OB's face would look like close up under the artificial moonlight and wishing he could be out there to see it.
By the time Quin gave up and went back into his bedroom, he was fully erect and aching for release. Following his routine from the last few nights, he grabbed a towel on the way out of the bathroom, stripped off his clothes and settled into bed. With actual images from the afternoon to replace his dreams and fantasies, it didn't take long for Quin to assuage his aching penis and bring himself to a very satisfying climax. Within moments of cleaning himself off, he had pulled up the covers and was drifting off into a sated sleep.
He got up the next morning for his 7am call to find a message slid under his door telling him that things had been rescheduled again due to the night shoot going into the wee hours. Depressingly, he hadn't found the note letting him know his 7am call was now an 11am call until after he had showered so he dressed in jeans and a shirt and headed down for breakfast.
The dining room was only sparsely occupied as most of the crew had been involved in the night shooting. A few of the people who hadn't been involved were there and, not seeing OB around, of course, Quin sat down in the midst of that group. They talked about the rescheduling and a few of them discussed their families and what they would be doing when they got back to LA or wherever they lived.
As he listened to all their plans, Quin began to consider his own plans for the upcoming weekend. He had nothing special to do in LA; he only needed to be back there for the next segment of shooting which started Monday afternoon at the California soundstage. He was really enjoying being at the lake, out in the country surrounded by trees and birds chirping instead of concrete and car engines. He had given up his planned vacation to take this part so maybe he could arrange a couple days of rest and relaxation up here before he headed back to LA. And if he could finagle someplace off the beaten track for that R&R, maybe he could convince a certain young Scotsman to join him. With that thought in mind, he finished his breakfast and headed into the kitchen to talk to some of the locals.
By the time Quin had to return to his room to dress for his first scene of the day, one of the temporary equipment techs had agreed to call his father to see if he would rent their fishing camp to Quin for the weekend. The place was on one of the smaller lakes about an hour north, set back about fifty yards from the lake and surrounded by trees. From what the tech said, it was a little rustic but as long as it had running water and indoor plumbing that was all Quin cared about.
During the course of the day Quin worked on his plans for the weekend. He had to be careful how he arranged things so that no one would become suspicious. He casually spoke to the people who had accompanied him on fishing vacations before and was relieved to find that all of them had family commitments that would require them to head back to LA Friday night. All there was left to do was find out for sure if he could rent the camp and then ask OB if he wanted to go with him.
When his final take of the day was complete, Quin headed into the dining room to find it almost empty. He filled a plate, grabbed a Guinness then settled down at an empty table to eat his meal. He was almost finished his meal when the tech came over and sat down across from him.
" Mr. Jinnai, I just talked to my dad and he said he would be honored to have you use the camp for the weekend," Adam said.
"That's great," Quin replied. "Let me know what the going rate is for a weekend rental and who to make the check out to."
"My dad doesn't normally rent so he won't take your money," Adam remarked. "Being able to tell people that the famous Quinlan Jinnai stayed at his camp will give him more prestige with his buddies than any amount of money ever could. After you've gone back to LA, of course."
Quin chuckled as he said, "That sounds just like the old timers back in Ireland. Your dad wouldn't be Irish, would he?"
"Last name's, O'Shea. What do you think?" Adam replied.
"I'd like to be able to do something for him. Any suggestions?" Quin asked.
"Take a couple of pictures with him when we bring you up there and he'll be happier than a pig in shit," Adam chuckled. "That and maybe a couple bottles of Irish whiskey."
"Done, but you don't need to bring me up there," Quin insisted. "Just give me the keys and the directions and let me know where I need to drop them off on the way back."
"You'll never find the place on your own," Adam countered. "The camp is about five miles from the main road, over a series of unmarked dirt roads that all look the same. You could be driving around in circles for hours and you'd never see another soul. You can follow us in and, if you let me know what time you plan on leaving, I'll drive back up and lead you to the main road."
"I wouldn't want you to have to give up part of your weekend," Quin said.
"No problem. It's not like there's much to do around here anyway," Adam remarked.
"I really appreciate all this, Adam," Quin declared. "If there's anything I can ever do for you or your family, don't hesitate to ask."
"I've been thinking about heading to the West Coast and looking for a job on a film crew," Adam said, somewhat hesitantly. "If I decide to do it, maybe you could head me in the right direction."
"Contact me if you decide to come out and I'll introduce you to the right people," Quin said.
"Great. The place is fully stocked with all the staples you might need, including fishing poles," Adam explained. "All you'll need is food and some bait. If you make a list of the stuff you want, I'll have the guy at the general store get it ready for you and deliver it here. Just give me an idea of what time you want to leave so I can let my dad know."
"As soon as the last scenes have been filmed and checked tomorrow afternoon," Quin said. "According to the schedule that would be around four but it will probably be more like six."
"That'd be fine," Adam said. "All I needed was a rough idea. I can call him when the filming is done to meet us. We only live a couple miles from here."
Quin rose from his chair and extended his hand to the young man. "Thanks again for setting this all up for me, Adam."
Adam stood up as well and clasped the offered hand firmly. "My pleasure, Mr. Jinnai. Talk to you tomorrow."
Quin was getting ready to leave the dining room when OB came in with a couple of the cameramen Quin sometimes fished with. "Finally done filming?" he asked as they reached him.
"I'm bloody knackered," OB grumbled. "I could fall asleep on my feet. After we finish tomorrow's filming, I'm going to spend the entire weekend being a bloody dosser."
Wanting to avert any suspicion, Quin turned to the two cameramen and said casually, "Adam's dad is going to let me use their camp. Are you sure you don't want to come fishing?"
"Wish I could," the first one complained, "but it's my kid's birthday.
"Me too," the second one said, "but it's my in-laws' anniversary and my wife will have me sleeping in the doghouse if I don't show up."
"Too bad," Quin remarked, sneaking a glance at OB.
"You're going fishing," OB asked in obvious confusion.
"Yeah, I decided to wait to head back to LA on Sunday night and spend the weekend up here," Quin explained offhandedly. "I don't get a chance to get out of the city as often I as like so I decide to take advantage of the opportunity."
"How many people are going with you?" OB asked, only his eyes betraying more than a casual interest.
"At this point, it looks like I'm going alone," Quin replied. "Anyone who likes to fish seems to have plans for the weekend that can't be changed. Are you a fisherman, OB?"
"Da first took me fishin' when I was just a cub," OB said, "but I haven't been since I left Scotland. As it is, this is the first time I've been in the country since I got to the states."
"Well, you're more than welcome to join me," Quin invited, again keeping his tone rather nonchalant. "I already checked the airline schedule and the last flight to LA Sunday night leaves LaGuardia at 9pm. With the time difference, that would get us home about midnight, so we'd be rested and ready to start filming on Monday."
"If you like to fish you should definitely go, OB," one of the cameramen said longingly. "The locals tell me there is some great trout fishing in the lakes around here."
"I'll definitely think on it," OB answered in the same casual tone. "Can I get back to you tomorrow, Quin?"
"Sure. I'm not leaving until after all the filming is complete," Quin replied. "Now if you guys will excuse me, I'm going to use the phone in Jorge's office to arrange to have a car delivered up here tomorrow afternoon."
"Later Quin," the three men said almost in unison as Quin left the dining area.
It was only a short walk to the room Jorge had commandeered as his office. This was the only place in the house that had a phone line installed so it had been the logical choice for the producer. Jorge was just getting up from his desk when Quin arrived so after greetings he told Jorge of his plans for the weekend and his need to change his flight and get a vehicle. Jorge gave him the number for the studio travel agent and the local phonebook before heading out of the office, leaving the door open behind him.
Quin flipped through the yellow pages for the car rental numbers and started to make his calls. The first place he reached only did local rentals but the girl was able to give him the number of a place in Albany that might be able to accommodate him. When he spoke to the second rental agent and explained what he needed, she sounded very hesitant.
"Having a car delivered to the Lake Saratoga area and then returning it to LaGuardia Airport will be very expensive," the female voice explained.
"Cost isn't an issue," Quin declared. "Just tell me how much it will be and I'll give the person delivering the car a check for the full payment."
" Do you have a New York State driver's license, sir?" she asked.
"I have a California license," Quin replied. "I've been in New York State working."
"This is an unusual request so I'll have to clear it with my supervisor," the female voice said somewhat sharply. "Your name, sir?"
"Quinlan Gordon Jinnai," he said in a similar tone. As he had expected, the voice at the other end of the phone went totally silent and after a few moments he asked, "Are you still there, miss?"
"I'm sorry, Mr. Jinnai," she replied, her voice now sickly sweet and very flustered. "I'm going to put you on hold for just a second while I speak to my supervisor."
"Certainly," Quin replied, not able to fully hide his amusement. He was waiting for the girl to come back, when OB appeared in the doorway. "Come in," he said with an absent wave. "Waiting for the car rental girl to check with her supervisor," he added, mimicking the girl's flustered tone.
OB stepped into the room a bit apprehensively, closing the door behind him when Quin motioned to him and stepping up to where the older man was standing. "When did you decide all this?"
"This morning at breakfast," Quin explained, covering the mouthpiece to the phone. "People were talking about their plans for the weekend and I was thinking about how I didn't really have anything pressing to do in LA and how much I was enjoying it here. So I asked a few of the local crew if they knew where I could rent a camp on one of the lakes. When I had a couple people looking into things for me, I casually asked around to see if anyone wanted to go up fishing." His eyes took on a mischievous sparkle as he continued. "To my relief, all of them had plans so when Adam told me his dad would let me use their place, I put the rest of my plan into action. There was a reason I asked you about liking fishing so publicly."
"So that no one would be suspicious," OB remarked as the pieces fell into place for him.
"Exactly. I rented a fishing camp, asked a bunch of people to come but you were the only one who was able to take me up on the invitation," Quin explained with a smirk. His expression became more serious as he added, "That is if you're interested in coming, of course."
"Interested in coming," OB repeated. "Bloody hell yes, I'm interested." He took a couple steps closer, ran a hand teasing over Quin's groin and whispered, "And if this wasn't Mr. Sacul's office, I'd press you against that desk and show you just how interested I am."
Any answer Quin might have managed was cut of by the return of the rental agent. "I spoke with my supervisor and we can arrange to have a vehicle delivered for you, Mr. Jinnai. Would you like a sports car, a Corvette or an MGB, perhaps?"
"Thank you. From what I understand, I'll need to travel on a number of dirt roads," Quin explained. "Maybe something that sits a little higher off the ground like a Mustang or a GTO."
"We have a fully loaded GTO available with only a couple thousand miles on it," she said. "Would that be acceptable?"
"That would be fine," Quin replied. It was only a matter of a few more minutes for them to settle on a price and arrange a time to have the car dropped off to him and picked back up at LaGuardia.
That task done, Quin called the travel agent. Having their flights changed was a much easier prospect than getting the car. With Quin's prominence, all he needed to do was ask and it was quickly arranged. By the time he got off the phone, the woman had secured them first class seats together on the last flight out of LaGuardia and arranged to have their tickets waiting for them at the airport when they checked in.
Quin hung up the phone, pressed a quick kiss to OB's lips and said, "You'd better leave first. Wouldn't want all my careful scheming to come to naught by having someone see us leave the office together."
"Okay," OB agreed reluctantly. After another brief kiss, he headed to the door, opened it and peeked out into the hallway. Seeing it was empty, he left the room and headed back into the dining area.
Quin waited a few minutes and left as well, going the opposite direction down the hallway to the far staircase. He was back in his bedroom a few moments later, pouring himself a drink before he settled onto the couch. As he sipped the amber liquid, he made a list of food and stuff to give to Adam and applauded himself on coming up with this plan. He was eagerly looking forward to the opportunity to spend 2 days alone with OB, getting to know the young Scotsman a whole lot better and exploring the possibility that the mutual lust they felt could grow into something more substantial. With that thought foremost in his mind, he readied himself for bed and his dreams, with the pleasant knowledge that tomorrow night some of those dreams would become reality.
Quin found himself awakening before his alarm, hand stroking his needy cock and memories of some vividly explicit dreams floating in his head. He wasn't surprised to see a smile on his face as he walked past the bathroom mirror and into the shower. Life was looking very good to him this morning and even waking up with a raging hard-on and no one to share it with couldn't dampen his enthusiasm. He stroked himself slowly with a soaped hand, images of OB on his knees with water cascading over his back filling his mind, and he hoped that this camp had an adequate shower to bring that fantasy to life. He took his time allowing his pleasure to build slowly until, with a breathy moan, his release pulsed over his hand mixing with the water flowing over him and disappearing down the drain.
Quin cleaned himself off quickly after his breathing and heart rate slowed and, after brushing his teeth and shaving, dressed in the costume for today's first scene. He pulled on the baggy, cuffed, dark brown suit pants then slipped on the starched white shirt. It took a couple minutes to insert the button studs and cufflinks, tuck in the shirt tales, zip his pants and pull the leather suspenders over his shoulders. After going back to the bathroom mirror to put on the tie, he dropped onto the couch to put on the brown socks and wing tip shoes. As he pulled on the loose suit jacket that finished the outfit, he glanced in the mirror and felt like he truly could have just stepped out of the 1930 underworld.
After finding Adam to give him the supply list and money to cover the cost, Quin grabbed a quick breakfast, made a brief stop at the hair and makeup people and then headed directly to the set. Today he would be filming the two summer home scenes that he shared with OB. The younger man had already come from the wardrobe department, wearing the antithesis of Quin's elegant apparel. Dressed in worn wool work pants, a coarse muslin work shirt and heavy black boots, OB looked right at home as a 1930's immigrant dockworker. Sabina Handel, the young actress playing the don's daughter was there was as well, looking every inch the rich man's daughter lounging around at their lakeside home. She was dressed in a billowy dress of fine cotton, white with yellow and blue polka dots, with short puffed sleeves, a heart shaped neckline and a hemline that ended about three inches above her ankles. Blue sling-back pumps on her feet and a strand of pearls encircling her neck finished the perfect picture.
The first scene they were due to film involved the young people sitting on the wooden porch swing and Leone and his wife arriving at the home. The daughter would introduce the young man to her parents and then in true 1930's mafia fashion, Leone would pull the boy aside and threaten him with very detailed bodily harm if the boy so much as looked at his daughter with impropriety.
Within a few minutes, Dena Billings had arrived from makeup and they were ready to begin filming. Sacul arranged all the players in their proper position and the clapboard sounded. Quin was enjoying the contrast of his character in the scene, soft and loving when speaking to his daughter and rough and cruel when speaking to the boyfriend. The first part of the scene with the four of them together went of almost without a hitch, Sacul getting a keeper in only three takes.
The second part of the scene proved to be more challenging. The scene required them to walk away from the house and down to the lakeshore to have the talk. On the first take, OB tripped over a tree root before they had taken a dozen steps. The second take was blown when a cameraman tripped over a power cord and pulled it out. The third through tenth takes were blown when one or the other of them flubbed their lines, the resultant swears and Irish curses causing OB to break out into peals of laughter. Finally, when the laughter became too much to ignore, Sacul called for a five minute break to allow Quin and OB to compose themselves.
The two men walked a little further down the lakeshore, trying to get the giggles out of their system. Quin was the first to speak. "I didn't think it was that funny, Kendrick," his smile softening the stern words.
After making sure no one was close enough to hear him, OB spoke. "Sorry. But when you said, 'you'd better keep your hands to yourself and off me' instead of off my daughter, my mind went places that it definitely shouldn't be contemplating while we're working," OB admitted with a shy grin.
"Well, if we ever want to contemplate that possibility for real, we'd better get our shit together and get these scenes shot," Quin remarked dryly. "Otherwise we'll be staying here filming all weekend instead of heading off into the woods for fishing and other more pleasant activities."
OB allowed himself one last guffaw before schooling his expression to one of total seriousness and agreeing. "Understood. Let's get back up there and get this one in the can."
They headed back to the set and got right back into filming. Things went better this time and they managed to get the scene shot to Jorge's satisfaction after three takes.
OB moved off the set as they got ready to film some scenes between Leone, his wife and daughter, settling into a chair beside a tree to watch. Quin was a consummate actor, able to shift from soft to hard, serious to playful, pompous to caring, in the blink of an eye. OB watched with growing admiration as the man's persona changed time and time again, making each scene beautiful and totally believable. He was so engrossed in the amazing performance he was viewing that he didn't hear anyone approaching until a voice pulled his attention away.
"You seem to be rather taken with my old buddy Quinlan, Mr. Kendrick," Nate Gunman said rather derisively. "What has you so enthralled?"
"Besides the fact that he is one of the studio's most successful actors, has been for the last twenty years and that I could learn a ton just by watching him?" OB replied, unable to keep his annoyance at the man's comment fully hidden. "I want to take full advantage of this opportunity to learn all I can from the man, so that maybe I can become half as good an actor as he is."
"Just don't let your hero worship of Jinnai interfere with your attention span, kid," Nate said sternly. "Mr. Sacul does not like to have to do infinite takes because someone can't stay under control."
Knowing he couldn't afford to alienate one of the directors, OB looked seriously at the man and apologized. "I appreciate the advice, Mr. Gunman, and I will work on keeping my focus where it belongs."
"See that you do," Nate said gruffly before disappearing in the direction of the scene being filmed.
OB swallowed his frustration at the pompous man's condescending attitude and turned his attention back to the filming. Quin was doing a scene with Dena Billings and OB had to bury a flare of jealousy as the actress slinked up to Quin and groped him suggestively. Dena's character was trying to make up with her husband after arguing about their daughter and the scene had her blatantly showing him just what she planned to do to make it up to him. The love scene itself had been filmed two days ago and OB was irrationally glad that he had been rehearsing for his motorcycle scene on the roads leading up to the house so he hadn't been around to watch it.
The crew broke for lunch when that scene was completed and OB moved inconspicuously into the group as they headed for the dining room. He filled a plate with food, grabbed himself a Coke and managed to grab the seat next to Quin's at the rapidly filling table. Conversation shifted between the day's filming and everyone's plans for the weekend, with he and Quin taking their fair share of ribbing over their earlier boners. It wasn't private, but they were together and OB was willing to settle for that in light of their plans for the weekend.
After lunch, they got ready to film the final location scenes. Although the scene was being filmed during the same day, the events took place much later in the film and all involved had costume changes. Quin had gone upstairs to change into a more casual outfit of navy blue linen pants, a white sport shirt with blue pinstripes and casual shoes. OB and Sabina were dressed even more casually, he in shorts and a shirt and she in a cotton sundress. They were both barefoot and these clothes would give them an easier time undressing since the later part of the scene required them both to be nude.
By the time Quin got down to the set, the filming had already begun. OB and Sabina were in the daughter's bedroom, lying on the bed still clothed but necking rather heavily. OB pulled off her dress, leaving her clad in only her bra and panties as he continued to seduce her. They ran through their few lines, the daughter's attempts to push her lover away fading as the scene progressed. They slipped under the covers while both were still dressed in their underclothes but bra, panties and briefs were tossed out from under the covers as the scene move onward. Any awkwardness and fumbling in their motions only made the scene between the supposed first time lovers more believable.
Sacul called cut when OB had positioned himself over Sabina, covering her body with his as he continued to kiss and fondle her. "That was great. We'll go with that take," the producer said jubilantly before calling Quin over for his part in the next scene.
After Quin got into his position at the end of the hallway, they shifted to that camera and the clapboard sounded. The scene called for Leone to start down the hall. When he reached his daughter's bedroom he was to stop, shocked into immobility by the obvious sounds of passion filtering threw the door. He flung open the door and stalked into the room like a madman, his expression growing thunderous. "You are a dead man," he growled, stomping over and dragging OB from the bed.
OB's feet tangled in the sheet and Sacul called cut as he tumbled to the floor. They set up again and redid the scene, but the next five times they never managed to get this first section exactly right. The cameramen were having trouble getting just the right amount of skin visible in the take. They needed enough to make the audience realize that the two of them were naked but not enough that the censors would make them cut it out of the film. Not that it appeared that Quin minded the delays this time, or OB since it was his painstakingly fit body being revealed in all its glory. Finally on the seventh try, Quin properly dragged OB out of bed and slammed him into position directly in front of Quin's imposing figure.
"Daddy, please, don't hurt him. I love him," Sabina cried out after covering her exposed body with the sheet.
OB wasn't sure if he was bothered or awed to have Quin look up and down his naked body, and not have the sight soften Leone's growl.
"What did I tell you, boy? Did you think I was kidding when I told you what I'd do to you if you violated my daughter?" The camera angles for the shot also needed to be very precise to not allow any hint of genitalia to show.
"But we love each other, sir. I want to marry her as soon as I can save up enough money," OB said fully in character. He let his voice quake and his brought his hands down to cover himself to help convey the character's embarrassment.
"Do you think my daughter would seriously consider marrying a two bit loser like you?" Quin growled. "I am Leone Nikkos, head of the biggest import business in New York City. She could marry any number of boys from wealthy Italian families. Why would she be interested in a poor immigrant boy like you?"
"I do want to marry him, daddy. He makes me happy," Sabina quivered between sobs. "And if you listened when I talked, you'd know that love is more important to me than money."
Quin grabbed OB's clothes from the floor and slammed them into his midsection barking, "Get dressed," before looking at Sabina and adding, "you too." After OB had pulled on his underwear and shorts, Quin grabbed him by the nape of the neck and dragged him out the door. "You'd better hope I've calmed down by the time we get downstairs or you'll be swimming with the lake trout - permanently." Without another word, OB was yanked behind him and dragged to the staircase.
"Cut," Jorge said. "Very nice. Great emotion, Quin. You really came across as an irate father. Take a fifteen minute break so we can review the film. If everything looks okay, we may actually be able to use that one as is."
Everyone nodded their approval and began heading down the stairway. OB pulled his shirt over his head and followed, catching up with Quin as he reached the corner of the house. The rest of the crew had gone over to the other house to grab food or drink or down to the lake edge for a smoke so Quin and OB ended up by themselves, standing under one of the large elm trees surrounding the house.
"That was amazing," OB complimented with a smile. "How did you managed to make it so realistic?"
After looking around to make sure no one else was in earshot, Quin admitted softly, "I did a bit of role-playing and pretended you were the one I was protecting."
OB took a step closer and whispered in Quin's ear. "And who, my dear Quin, is going to protect me from you."
"I think I may be the one who needs protecting or at least my heart does," Quin confessed in the same hushed tones.
Grasping one large hand, OB pressed a kiss to the broad palm as he replied tenderly, "Don't worry, I'll protect both you and your heart with my life." They stepped away from each other quickly as they heard the sound of leaves crunching underfoot.
"Well, well, well. What have we here?" Nate Gunman said, his voice fairly oozing contempt.
" What are you going on about, Gunman?" Quin groused in obvious annoyance.
"First I see Kendrick watching your every move like a love-sick babe and now I see the two of you talking quietly under a tree," Nate berated as he looked between the two men accusingly. "If one of you was a broad, I'd assume you were planning some secret rendezvous."
"As a matter of fact we are," Quin replied in the same tone. He shot OB a quick glance to silence his shock and continued, "I rented a large fishing camp from one of the locals for the weekend about an hour north of here and I invited some of the crew to go up with me. OB decided to come and was just asking me what time I planned on leaving. There's room for you to come too, if you're interested."
"No thanks," Nate replied scornfully. "Spending my weekend in the middle of nowhere with a bunch of guys who get up at the crack of dawn to sit for hours in a fishing boat isn't my idea of a good time."
"Your loss," Quin said, while holding back his more truthful feelings.
When the director had disappeared back in the direction of the next scene they were filming, OB let out a heavy sigh of relief. "I'm sorry, I shouldn't have been messing around where people could see us."
"No harm done. Nate Gunman is just a blowhard who's way too interested in other people's business," Quin reassured.
"If he had walked up a few seconds sooner…" OB admitted, allowing the unfinished sentence to convey his regret.
"But he didn't so just consider it a lesson in vigilance and awareness of the people around you," Quin said gently.
" What if he had accepted your invitation?" OB asked, appalled at the possibility.
"There was no worry there," Quin assured with a smile. "Gunman hates fishing with a passion and dislikes me even more so I knew he would turn me down. Now let's get back to the set and see where we stand with filming."
By the time they reentered the house, the camera crew was moving their equipment into the living room area. Sacul came directly over to them and said, "We're going to go with that take. There was one place where the camera panned down a little too low but I think we can doctor it. The emotion really comes through in that scene and I don't want to mess around with success. We'll be filming the scene between Dena and Sabina next so you have plenty of time to get dressed for the final scene."
Quin and OB headed back to the crew house with a nod. They walked together, talking casually about the fishing trip but the hallways were crowded with people so they parted ways when they reached Quin's bedroom.
Stripping down to his briefs, Quin began packing, only leaving out the jeans and shirt he planned on wearing to the camp. It didn't take him very long and, when he had finished, he jumped in the shower to cool off. He dried off and shaved again, his five o'clock shadow heavy enough to be picked up by the camera. After tossing his toiletries in the bag, he dressed in the suit he would be wearing in the final scene and headed back down.
The final scene showed the family getting into the car and driving away from the summer house. The segment with OB's character heading down the road on his motorcycle was filmed first since the actresses needed to do a costume change. Quin alternated between admiring the classic 1935 Ford he would get to drive and OB in his vintage leathers, trying to decide which one teased his senses more. As expected, OB won out and Quin was relieved that his pants were loose enough and his jacket long enough that his reaction to the handsome man wasn't visible.
The car scene only took three takes to get in the can, the only problems occurring when the girls were getting into the awkward seats. Driving away from the set's summer house, Quin barely heard it when Sacul called "cut, that's a wrap," but definitely heard the cheering coming from the crew. By the time he drove to the end of the street to turn around and pulled back into the driveway, the crew was already beginning to pack up the equipment. Two tractor trailers were being pulled up to the houses so that everything could be loaded in them for the trip back to LA.
Saying his good-byes to people as he passed them, Quin walked back towards the house the cast and crew was using as a residence. Adam was waiting just inside the dining area with an older couple standing rather uncomfortably beside him. As he approached, the young man greeted him enthusiastically. "Hello, Mr. Jinnai. I would like you to meet my parents, Danny and Becky O'Shea."
"It's a pleasure to meet you, Mrs. O'Shea," Quin said as he kissed the older woman's hand gallantly before turning to her husband. "It's nice meeting you too, Mr. O'Shea, and thank you for allowing me the use of your camp."
"It's an honor to meet a gentleman of your caliber, Mr. Jinnai," Danny O'Shea said as he shook the extended hand. "And please call me Danny."
"And I'm Quin, just an old Irish paddy who got very, very lucky," Quin replied.
"I need to help pack the equipment so my parents will bring you up to the camp when you're ready," Adam said. "Let them know what time you need me to come up on Sunday so you can make your flight."
"Thanks Adam, I will," Quin called out as the young man ran out the door. "Please make yourselves comfortable," he said turning back to the O'Sheas. "I won't be long."
OB was coming down the stairs with his bag when Quin was heading up, those incredible leathers replaced by jeans and a t-shirt. "The O'Sheas are waiting in the dinning area. Could you go outside and see if the rental car has been delivered?"
"Sure, Quin," OB replied as he continued down the stairs.
Quin headed to his room to change out of his costume and into regular clothes. He tossed the suit he had taken off on the bed, knowing one of the wardrobe people would be in to gather his costumes as soon as he left. It took him only a couple minutes to redress in his casual clothes, gather up his bag and the check he had written for the car rental and head back down the stairs.
An unfamiliar man in his mid-thirties who was most likely the car delivery guy was standing just inside the door with OB. The guy was staring at him as he approached and it was easy to see that he was definitely feeling a little overwhelmed. It was only a matter of a couple minutes for Quin to show the man his license, give him the check and get the keys. That done, he walked back to the O'Sheas, introduced OB and led the group outside.
OB had already loaded his bag and the supplies into the trunk so after Quin placed his inside they were ready to go. The O'Sheas had already gotten into their own car and turned it around so they were facing the main road. After adjusting the seat and the rear view mirror, Quin turned the key in the ignition and they were on their way.
The hour drive to the O'Shea's camp was very relaxing. The two men talked about everything and nothing, in between OB changing the radio station every two minutes to find a better song. OB would have liked to slide closer to Quin on the bench seat but he was pretty sure Mr. O'Shea would be keeping a close watch on the car from his rear view mirror and, after the close call with Nate Gunman, he didn't want to take any chances.
As they pulled off the main road and onto the first of the dirt roads, Quin devoted his full attention to figuring out where they were going. By the time they had taken the third turn at a road only marked by another group of identical trees, Quin was glad Mr. O'Shea was bringing him up and that he wouldn't have to find his way out on his own. Finally after an unknown number of turns and twists, Mr. O'Shea pulled his car onto a packed down area of dirt by a two-story white house. As Quin pulled in beside him, he caught a glimpse of the blue lake through the small clearing beside the house.
Quin and OB got out of the car and walked over to where the O'Sheas stood half way down the path. "Reminds me of home," OB said softly as he looked out at the red ball of the evening sun hanging over the crystal blue lake.
"That is does, lad," Quin said fondly as he reached Danny O'Shea. "This is beautiful. I can't thank you enough for allowing us to use it for the weekend. Spending most of my time in the concrete city of Los Angeles, the opportunity to spend a few days out in the country like this is a real treat."
Danny led them around to the front of the house, stepping onto the wrap-around porch, putting the key in the lock and pushing open the door. "Its not very fancy but you should be comfortable," Danny said as he escorted them into the large living room. Two comfortable couches and four overstuffed chairs were arranged haphazardly around the large room, all facing the stone fireplace that filled a good portion of the wall facing the lake. They could see the kitchen and breakfast nook set further in and a staircase off the kitchen must have headed to the bedrooms.
Walking over to a door in the back corner, Danny opened it, knelt down and lit the pilot light for the hot water heater. "There's running water, a working toilet and shower, though hot water can be a little scarce so you need to let it reheat between showers." He headed into the kitchen and lit the pilot for the stove as he continued his description. "There's electricity in the kitchen and living room but none of the upstairs rooms have electricity, only gas lamps set into the walls in each room. There's no phone, so you'll be unreachable until Adam comes back for you on Sunday."
"All the beds were made with fresh linens when we opened the camp two weeks ago, so you can each have your pick of the bedrooms," Becky explained. "There are plenty of towels in the closet by the bathroom. Help yourselves to any of the canned goods in the cupboards and you'll find everything you need to cook with in the kitchen." She reached into her handbag, pulling out a camera and looked entreatingly at Quin. "Would it be all right if I took a few pictures of you and Danny so that we can show them to our friends after you leave?"
Remembering Adam's words, Quin smiled warmly at Becky and replied, "Sure, why don't we go outside and you can take as many as you want."
Becky took shots of Danny and Quin on the front porch, by the shore of the lake, sitting at the old picnic table and standing right next to the wooden sign at the corner of the house that read 'O'Shea's Bog'. She included OB in a couple of the shots and then OB took her camera and took a few of Quin with both Danny and Becky.
After they finished posing for the pictures, Becky moved onto the grass and Danny led Quin and OB over to an old storage shed. After unlocking it, he handed Quin a key ring and said, "The fishing boat is in here, along with the motor and an assortment of poles. It's a small aluminum boat so the two of you should be able to carry down to the water as long as you don't put the motor on first. There's a canoe, some chairs and a few floats in there as well. Use whatever you want; just make sure you lock them up when you're done."
"We'll leave the place exactly as we found it," Quin assured, noticing that Becky had taken a few more pictures while they were at the shed. "Thanks again for letting us use it, Danny. It'll be great to spend a couple days relaxing with no one looking for us to do anything and no phones ringing off the hook."
"It's our pleasure," Danny replied as he walked back over to his wife. "Now Becky, let's leave these men to their fishing. What time do you need Adam to come back on Sunday?"
"Around 1pm would be fine," Quin said, knowing that there was no way he would find his way back to the main road without help. "We have reservations on a flight back to Los Angeles that leaves from LaGuardia at 9pm. That will give us enough time to get to the airport even if there's traffic."
"One it is then. Hope the fish are biting for ya," Danny said and with that he and Becky headed back to their car.
Quin and OB stood in the yard, waving as the car headed down the road, before turning back to watch the last slivers of the setting sun disappearing behind the trees. When it had vanished completely, Quin grabbed OB's hand and pulled him in the direction of the house. "I find I'm suddenly feeling very tired. What do you think of taking a short nap before we unload our things from the car?"
OB ran forward so that he was in the lead, pulling Quin to the car rather than into the house. "We should get the stuff from the car now," OB insisted. "I don't planning on moving too far from the bed until the sun comes up tomorrow morning."
Without another word, Quin smiled and opened the trunk and they grabbed their bags, the two boxes and styrofoam cooler holding the supplies Adam had gotten for Quin. Slamming the trunk shut, they headed into the house without a backwards glance. Quin placed the cooler into the refrigerator without unpacking it and OB dropped the boxes on the counter and left them the same way.
"This can wait until later," OB said, his duffle bag still looped over his shoulder. His grin turned positively evil. "Race you upstairs. First one to the bedroom gets to be in control," he said, heading out of the kitchen at a dead run.
It took only a second for Quin to grab his bag and get moving as well, his long legs closing the distance between them in no time flat. They reached the top of the stairs at the same moment but Quin stepped through the doorway of the nearest bedroom first. "Looks like I win," he taunted, dropping his bag on the floor before pulling OB into his arms for a hard kiss.
Giving as good as he was getting, OB explored Quin's mouth ruthlessly as they battled each other for dominance. Their tongues slid against each other, mimicking what they hoped would be happening later, or sooner it appeared if OB was to have anything to say about it. Dropping his bag at his feet, OB's hands slipped to the front of Quin's shirt, unbuttoning it and his jeans as they continued the kiss. As his hand started on the zipper, Quin grabbed his wrist and stopped his movement.
"I must be losing my touch if you can think enough to undo buttons while I'm kissing you," Quin drawled when he finally released OB's lips.
"I'm a country boy, Quin," OB countered with a smirk. "One of the first things my da taught me was to split my attention. Comes in pretty handy at times like this."
Quin stepped back and moved quickly towards the bed, pulling off his shirt as he went. "I prefer to be able to give my full attention to each task I undertake." After toeing off his shoes, he unzipped his jeans, pulling them off along with his briefs, tossed back the covers and collapsed backwards onto the bed. "Not having any clothing to deal with will definitely make things easier. Now unless you've changed your mind about joining me for that nap, I'd suggest you get naked. I don't allow clothing in my bed."
Within fifteen seconds, OB had stripped out of his clothing and was diving into Quin's arms. "Ah," he breathed as they came together skin to skin. He settled against Quin's chest then lowered his mouth. This kiss was as intense as their earlier one, hard and passionate, a battle for supremacy overwritten by lust, desire and the tiny threads of love growing between them. They kissed for quite some time, pulling apart for quick gasps of air when the need became too great then renewing their oral explorations. Finally OB pulled back, panting and heaving, lifting his body away from Quin's arching form.
"Too much… Slow down or I'll have a repeat performance of the other night."
It took a couple of seconds for OB's meaning to become clear to Quin but as soon as it did he rolled the younger man onto his back on the bed. "We can't have that now. Especially since I've been so looking forward to finding out how your other taste compares."
That said, Quin set about to taste every inch of his new lover. Kneeling so that he was straddling OB's thighs, he kissed him again, a gentler kiss, exploring rather than possessing as he had before. Then he moved on the OB's ear, licking and nipping, enjoying the shudder that ran through the younger man when he slowly trailed the tip of his tongue along the whorl of an ear. He kissed across forehead, cheeks and chin, spending an inordinate amount of time on the adorable cleft before moving on to the other ear and repeating his motions.
When Quin's lips began a torturously slow path over his neck, OB cried out in frustration. "A bleedin' turtle moves faster than you! Bloody hell, Quin, are you trying to drive me insane?"
Quin pulled back from his feast and looked down at his semi-captive lover with an evil leer. "If I remember correctly, you made a wager, I won, and as such I am in control of our current encounter. So if I want to proceed at a snail's pace, you have no option but to lie back and put up with it."
"You're a cruel, cruel man, Quinlan Jinnai," OB growled. "You must have been an inquisitor in a previous life." After a moment he began trying a different approach, putting on his most alluring smile as his hand wrapped around Quin's very erect penis. "How about you postpone getting that taste until sometime later tonight and just fuck me into the mattress right now?" When Quin couldn't prevent the column of flesh OB was holding in his hand from twitching, OB he added, "From what I can feel, a part of you is definitely interested in that slight revision in the plan."
Quin dropped a kiss to the tip of OB's nose then pried the hand away from his erection as he slid down the bed. "We'll get to that, don't you worry. But not before I taste you first. Remember, all good things come to those who wait," he counseled as he continued his path down his lover's chest.
"You really are trying to drive me insane," OB complained before he lost the ability for speech as Quin lapped at the head of his cock.
"Insane with pleasure, I hope," Quin teased before sucking the tip of OB's penis into his mouth. OB's throaty groan was all the motivation Quin needed to apply his full attention to the task at hand. After licking away the drop of fluid pooled at the tip, he moved his attentions to the thick shaft bobbing in front of him. He ran his tongue slowly along the length in thin stripes until he had covered every inch, savoring the ensuing moans and cries.
OB's was quivering under him by this time, repeating "please, please," over and over. The needy pleas undid him so Quin swallowed him to the root and pressed his tongue against the sensitive spot under the head. That combined with a few strong sucks was all it took and OB was climaxing, his semen pulsing down his lover's throat as he screamed, "fuck yes, Quin."
Quin continued to suck gently on the flesh in his mouth, savoring the tart fluid and releasing it only after it had softened. He slid up the bed, propped himself up on one elbow and looked down at his sated lover. "Delectable. I can see this'll be a flavor I'll quickly become addicted to."
"Bloody hell," OB said when he finally managed to stop gasping. "Do you see my brains anywhere? I think you may have sucked them out my cock."
Quin chuckled and kissed OB's temple. "Your brains may be scrambled but they're still there. Though I can't guarantee that'll still be the case by the end of the weekend." Another brief kiss and Quin was levering himself off the bed and moving over to the doorway where his bag was sitting.
"Where are you going?" OB grumbled as he reached out a hand to Quin two seconds too late.
"Just getting something out of my bag," Quin replied as he unzipped his bag and rummaged through it. When he found what he was looking for, he pulled it out, holding the tube up for OB to see as he rejoined, "Unless you've changed your mind about me fucking you into the mattress?"
Keeping his eyes locked with Quin's, OB didn't answer in words, just flipped onto his stomach, spread his legs wide and stuck his ass up in the air in blatant invitation.
In less than a heartbeat, Quin had closed the distance to the bed and was looking down with appreciation. "So beautiful," he whispered as he lightly traced the line of OB's spine with one finger.
"No contest when compared with you," OB said as he stroked up the closest thigh. He traced the thick erection with a fingertip when he reached it and entreated softly, "Now come back to bed and show me just how good it can be."
Unable to resist that honest plea, Quin knelt between OB's spread legs and ran his hands lightly along OB's flanks as he kissed one shoulder. He kissed the other one in turn then began a path of kisses along OB's spine. When he reached the small of his back his kisses turned into sucks, continuing on the same spot until he had drawn a good-sized love mark to the surface. With a last lick to the purple mark he continued lower, licking his way down to the small pucker hidden in the dark cleft. OB's shivered under him as his tongue teased over the sensitive opening, arching into his touch as he pushed just the tip of his tongue inside.
"Oh God, fuck, that's good," OB cried as Quin's tongue breached the opening of his body and stroked barely inside. By the time he was stroking into OB in a regular rhythm, OB's cock was hard and weeping again and Quin wasn't sure his young lover would last until he was inside him. With some regret, Quin pulled his tongue away and, after a kiss to his passion mark, shifted to kneel between OB's thighs.
"Now Quin, please," he was begged when he removed his hands from OB's body to retrieve the tube he had removed from his belongings. Twisting open the cap, Quin squirted an ample amount of lube onto his fingers and pressed one into the slightly loosened muscle as he soothed. "Soon, just need to get you ready."
"Am ready," OB countered, pushing his hips back on Quin's finger.
"Don't want to hurt you," Quin insisted as he lubed and pushed in two fingers this time. He stroked them in and out, coating and stretching until OB was almost whimpering under him. Aroused almost beyond reason by the needy sounds coming from his lover Quin gave in, coating his erection with the lube left on his hand before positioning it at the opening of OB's body. "God, yes!!," he cried as he pressed forward, the satin heat of OB's body encasing him perfectly. He stilled when he was almost fully sheathed, fighting to keep the pressure surrounding him from pushing him prematurely over the edge.
"Damn it, Quin, move," OB growled, snapping his hips back.
That motion sheathed him completely, breaking what little resolve he had left, and Quin began thrusting into his lover. At first his pace was slow, long strokes in and out, savoring the tight heat around him as he angled his thrusts to bring OB the most pleasure. But soon the slow pace was not enough and he moved faster. He shifted his hands to OB's hips to keep him from sliding forward as he pounded into him, Quin's hips snapping forward in brisk strokes.
"Fuck yeah, just like that, don't stop," OB muttered as Quin's cock raked over his prostate with every stroke. Their pleasure cresting, OB reached back and pulled one of Quin's hands from his hip to wrap it around his cock. "So close," he whimpered when Quin started stroking.
"Come for me," Quin demanded huskily. He slammed forward until he was buried to the balls, the thumb of his other hand stroking firmly over the passion mark he had created earlier.
This was all it took and OB was coming, his semen spurting over Quin's hand as he screamed out in pleasure. Seconds later, Quin stiffened behind him with a low groan and pulsed his release into OB's body. They stayed connected until the last tremors of their orgasms faded and then Quin slipped from OB's body and collapsed on the bed. As soon as he could make his body move, he rolled onto his side and nestled OB into his arms.
"That was bloody brilliant," OB said when he had stopped gasping for breath.
"It was rather intense, wasn't it," Quin agreed, as he stroked a hand down OB's back. "It's the different between having sex with someone you picked up in a bar or with someone you actually care about. I have to admit, it hasn't been like this for me for a very long time."
"I don't think it's ever been like this for me," OB admitted. He snuggled deeper into Quin's arms, kissed the nipple closest to his lips then whispered against the skin. "I don't know how I'll ever live without this."
"If we're lucky, neither one of us will have to," Quin said. "Now, I could use that nap." He felt the nodded of agreement against his chest, tightened his grip on the lean body and allowed himself to drift off to sleep.
The room was dark when the sound of a rumbling stomach that wasn't his own pulled Quin from the depths of sleep. He opened his eyes to see OB looking down at him in amusement, his features lit only by the moonlight streaming in through the windows.
"It's about time you woke up. Old people must need more sleep," OB teased after dropping a light kiss to Quin's lips.
Ignoring the playful insult, Quin angled his watch into the stream of light. "I can't believe it's almost midnight."
"I know, it's doesn't seem that late. Though my stomach has been loudly reminding me for the past half hour that whatever I ate at noon was more than worked off by our recent activities," OB said with a smile.
Quin pressed a kiss of his own to the man who was still half sprawled over him before smacking his palm against the naked ass. "Well, if you'd be so kind as to get up, we can go downstairs and see what we can throw together to appease your rambunctious stomach."
Snuggling a little tighter against Quin, OB asked in a rather pathetic whine, "Any chance I can wait here and you can bring food up to me?"
"Not on your life. You may be cute but you're not that cute," Quin said. He pushed the younger man out of the circle of his arms and rose slowly from the bed. "Now get up before I have to paddle your arse."
OB rolled onto his stomach, wiggled his hips provocatively and looked up with a half grin. "A threat like that is more likely to cause me to disobey than to obey."
Quin raised an eyebrow and ran his hand over the arse in question. "So you're saying that threatening not to paddle you would be more effective? I guess I'll have to keep that it mind for another day." He slapped his hand down once more on the firm cheek then ordered, "Now up or you'll go hungry until breakfast."
"Meany," OB grumbled as he levered himself to sit on the edge of the bed.
Quin grabbed a match from the holder under the wall sconce, struck it against the strip to ignite it and lit the two gas lamps in the bedroom before pulling on his briefs and jeans and disappearing out the door. "I'll give him not that cute," Quin overheard OB grouch. "It's wouldn't have killed him to make food and bring it up here."
"Ah, it lives," Quin jeered as OB noisily entering the kitchen. Quin kept his attention on the cooler he was emptying in spite of the quite effective pout OB wore. He place two steaks and some butter on the counter and stored the rest of the items on the refrigerator shelves before turning to the boxes. After placing a six pack of Guinness and the bottles of coke in the fridge as well, he turned to face OB and asked, "Planning to make yourself useful or just going to lean against the counter and sulk?"
"You fuck me senseless, wile me with promises of a future but won't even bring me dinner in bed," OB grouched again as he closed the distance between them and buried his face enticingly against Quin's neck. "There is something just so wrong if my allure has already faded to that extent."
"Your allure hasn't faded one bit, brat," Quin retorted, as he tipped up OB's face to look into his eyes. "I can surely fry up a couple steaks and a pan of spuds without your assistance but why would I want to be down here all alone when I can have the pleasure of your company."
"Well, if you put it that way," OB replied, his eyes smoldering a very vivid shade of green.
After kissing away the last remnants of the pout, Quin gazed down with a smoldering look of his own. "You're going to have everyone from the lowly makeup girls to the biggest directors to this year's latest crop of starlets eating out of your hand before the year is out." He placed two cans of potatoes in OB's hands and pushed him in the direction of the opposite counter. "But until then, go look around in the drawers for something to open these with."
"Relegated to kitchen drudgery," OB sassed before his stomach grumbled loudly. "But since I won't ever get any food unless I pitch in…" He let his acquiescence fade away as he rummaged through the drawers in question.
The friendly banter continued between kisses and teasing caresses as they worked together to make dinner. Two black fry pans appeared from somewhere and, after he heated them, Quin tossed the two steaks into one and sliced the now opened cans of potatoes into the other one. Long sips of warm Guinness accompanied the meal preparation and each was on their second bottle by the time they sat down with their plates. Ample portions of the simple but hearty fare was exactly what they needed to satisfy their appetites and when they pushed back their empty plates, both wore equal expressions of contentment.
They made quick work of cleaning their dishes and putting everything away. Quin placed some cubes of ice from the small freezer into a large glass, filled it with water from the tap before picking it up in one hand and extending his other to OB. "Now how about we head back upstairs. I find I'm craving a little dessert."
Turning off the lights downstairs as they went, they bounded up the stairs and into the bedroom. One look at the shambles the bed was in had OB stopping just inside the door. "How about we move dessert to one of the other bedrooms? We'll need to sleep in two anyway to prevent any gossip."
"Who said you couldn't be trained to think deviously," Quin quipped as he put out the two gas lamps and led OB into the next bedroom. Moving directly to the bed, he placed his glass of water on the bedside table, stripped off his clothes, pulled back the blankets and slipped into the cool sheets. "Coming?" he asked and in seconds OB had done the same and was settling into his arms.
Still sated by their earlier lovemaking, they kissed and cuddled for a while, gently exploring each other's mouths as their hands roamed over every bit of skin they could reach. Finally, their contentment and the security of each other's arms relaxed them enough that the pace of the day caught up with them and they drifted off into sleep.
Morning light had filled the room when OB gave in to the desire to kiss Quin slowly awake. "Mornin'," was mumbled sleepily and OB found his head being stroked in time with the kisses he was plying against Quin's chest.
"Mornin' yourself," OB replied as he slithered back up so that he could reach his lover's lips. "I've been patiently waiting for you to wake up," he said when his mouth was free. Rocking his morning erection into Quin's thigh, he amended that a bit. "Well, maybe not so patiently. But now that you're awake, I would like the opportunity to carry out the comprehensive exploration I never got to perform last night. That is unless you have some objection."
"No objection at all," Quin replied. "Just give me a minute to use the loo and I'll be right back."
OB rolled off to spread out on his back and said. "Be my guest. I did that while you were still sleeping." He slipped out of bed after Quin disappeared down the stairs, retrieved the tube of lube from the other bedroom and was settled comfortably back on the bed when his lover finally returned. "Took you long enough."
"It seems me wire had more interesting things on its mind than taking a piss," Quin retorted as he slid back into bed.
"Well, let's see if I can take care of those other things for you," OB countered before diving in for a kiss.
Coherent conversation ended at this point, as OB strove to recreate the thorough treatment he'd been given the night before. Bypassing Quin's most obvious need, he began his task, kissing, licking, nipping and caressing every other erogenous zone on Quin's body and finding a few that were more ticklish than sensitive. His cock was throbbing urgently as he worked but he refused to shortchange his partner by increasing his pace. Only when Quin was begging as he had been himself the previous evening, did OB give in and suck the leaking shaft into his mouth. He barely got to taste the drops of fluid pooled at the tip before he was pulled away roughly by his hair. "Hey," he cried indignantly as he tried to shift free.
"I won't be good for more than one round this morning and I don't want to come until you're buried inside me," Quin explained between panted breaths.
Not stupid enough to turn down an offer like that, OB quickly gave in, lying down beside him and motioning Quin to roll over.
Quin settled more comfortably on his back, spread his legs and insisted, "This way. I want to be able to see your face when you come inside me."
OB's hands were shaking with need when he knelt between Quin thighs and twisted open the lube. He applied it liberally to his fingers and locked onto those darkened blue eyes as he slid one finger inside. "Damn, you're tight," he muttered as he slid his finger in and out of the smooth channel.
"It's been a while," Quin replied as he arched into the touch.
The implication of that admission left OB speechless and he concentrated on going slow, coating and stretching the ring of muscle until it had loosened substantially. Quin was whimpering and moaning under him by the time it was done to his satisfaction and he asked softly, "Are you ready for me?"
"Please," Quin choked out as he stroked a hand down OB's chest.
Quickly coating his cock, OB placed it at the stretched opening and pressed forward very slowly. He stopped a couple of times to allow Quin to adjust; though not as substantial as his lover he was still rather well endowed. Finally he was buried to the balls, fighting valiantly not to come just from the sensation of the tight heat surrounding him and the sound of Quin's needy moans. In a few moments he was able to move, pulling slowly back before pressing inside in long strokes.
"Yeah, so good," Quin moaned as OB's cock stroked that hidden place inside him.
OB gave himself fully over to the dance at this point, his pace increasing as his lover lifted up rhythmically. He could feel his balls beginning to pull up against his body and not wanting to fall over the edge alone, he reached for Quin's cock and began stroking in counterpoint to his thrusts. Blue eyes were staring blazingly into his, love and desire evident in the darkened orbs, and that was all it took to push OB over the abyss. Fighting to keep his eyes opened, he arched his back and pounded into his lover, his orgasm washing over him like a shock wave of overwhelming pleasure. Semen was still pulsing from him when Quin's body tightened around him and he felt wetness spreading over his hand.
When the last spurts of semen had flowed from Quin's shaft, OB pulled his softened penis from Quin's body and collapsed beside him on the bed. When he finally regained the ability to move and speak, he snuggled into Quin's arms and said, "I had you pegged as pretty much a permanent top."
"I have been," Quin answered, looking down into OB's sated face. "At least for about the last fifteen years."
A puzzled expression took over his face as he asked, "Do you mind if I ask why? You certainly seemed to enjoy it."
"Trust and control, mostly," Quin admitted. "I had encounters with a couple of people who cared nothing for my pleasure and it soured me on the experience. By being the top, I could control things and never had to make myself vulnerable to someone else's whim."
That candid disclosure touched him deeply and it was a long moment before OB could manage to speak. "I'm honored by your trust and will do my best never to make you regret giving it to me."
"I know you will," Quin whispered and tightened their embrace. They laid together in silence after that for a long while, each lost in his own thoughts on the powerful experience they had just shared and the implications of that experience for their future.
They must have dozed off at some point because when Quin woke again it was lighter and a glance at his watch on the table told him it was almost 11am. "Wake up, sleepyhead," he said as he dropped tiny kisses on OB's cheeks and eyebrows.
"Comfortable, don't want to," OB mumbled as he tried to burrow under the blankets.
"It's almost 11, so unless you plan on spending the entire weekend in this bed you'd better get up," Quin ordered.
OB's eyes opened at that comment and tried to appear innocent. "You say that like it would be a bad thing."
"Not a bad thing exactly - just one better saved for a rainy Sunday in LA," Quin explained, not bothering to hide his amusement. "I would like the chance to sit out in a fishing boat in the middle of that beautiful lake, pretending to fish and watching your naked chest get bronzed by the sun."
"Well, when you put it that way," OB agreed. He tossed back the covers then climbed over Quin to get to the floor. "I have first turn at the shower." When he saw Quin's look of confusion, he added, "Checked it out this morning and that stall is barely big enough for one of us never mind both. Looks like that will have to be something saved for LA as well." He ogled Quin openly for a long moment then headed out of the room without so much as a by your leave.
Quin rose from the bed a moment later, tugging on his briefs and jeans, then bundled OB's clothes and brought them into the other bedroom. After tossing the dirty stuff into a pile in the corner, he walked over to the window and pushed it open. The day was bright and sunny, only a few high puffy clouds dotting the sky and from what he could feel of the air blowing in, warmer than he had expected. He went back to his bag and pulled out clean briefs and a pair of shorts, tossing them on the bed for when he showered, and headed downstairs.
He pulled out a bottle of orange juice from the fridge, poured himself a glass then started a pot of coffee. By the time the coffee was percolating on the stove, he had thrown a large slice of ham into one of the black pans and was scrambling six eggs into a large bowl with pepper and cream. He pulled a loaf of bread from the box and butter from the fridge and was plugging in the toaster when OB came out from the shower. The sight of his damp and very naked lover seriously tested his resolve but another look over at the sparkling blue lake helped Quin to overcome it. "Scrambled eggs and ham okay?" he asked as OB looked over at him from the bottom of the stairs.
"Fine. Just let me get some clothes on and I'll help you," OB said before winking. "Unless you prefer your kitchen help naked."
"That wouldn't be very conducive to cooking," Quin replied. "Plus grease could splatter onto some rather sensitive places."
"True enough. Be back in a flash," OB called out as he bounded up the stairs.
Eggs were being poured into the butter coated pan by the time OB returned dressed in a pair of frayed jeans shorts. "I'll make some toast," he said as he dropped two slices of bread into the old toaster. Grabbing plates, cups and another glass from the cupboard, he arranged them on the table then poured himself a glass of juice. He took a few sips then moved back to the toaster, removing the toasted bread and adding two more slices. By the time the second ones were toasted, the eggs were cooked and Quin was spooning half the eggs and a piece of ham onto each plate. OB poured them each a mug of coffee and they sat down and ate their meal in relative silence.
OB had cleaned his plate and was slowly sipping a second cup of coffee when he spoke. "Why is it that food tastes better when you're out in the country?"
"Not sure but in this case I think our level of hunger had something to do with it," Quin replied.
OB got up from his chair and collected the dishes they had dirtied. "I'll clean up while you take your shower. And I promise not to run the water while you're showering."
"Thanks," Quin replied with a smile before rising from the table and heading upstairs to grab his toiletries.
By the time Quin showered and dressed, OB had cleaned up and was standing on the porch looking out at the lake, the styrofoam cooler held in his hands. "I got the poles out and the bait's in here along with some ice in case we catch any fish. We just need to bring the boat down to the lake and put on the outboard."
Quin tossed the two T-shirts he was carrying over his shoulder as they headed to the storage shed.
"What are those for?" OB asked, tugging on the white fabric. "I thought you wanted me to get a tan?"
"A tan, not a sunburn. "Quin contradicted as he opened the shed door. "If either of us got a serious sunburn, it could definitely interfere with our plans for later tonight."
Grabbing the t-shirt and pulling it over his head, OB agreed, "Wouldn't want anything to interfere with our after dark activities."
Without further conversation, they pulled the aluminum boat out of the shed and dragged it down to the edge of the lake. They went back for the outboard and the gas can, bringing them both down to the water's edge and securing the motor to the back of the boat. It only took a few minutes to secure the motor, fill the gas tank and push the boat into the ankle deep water. They climbed into the boat and each took a seat. Quin tossed his shirt on the bench beside him and used the short paddle from under the seat to push the boat into deeper waters. When the depth was enough, he lowered the motor into the water, pulling firmly on the starter rope until the engine roared to life. As soon as the rumble filled his ears, he grabbed the motor handle and steered it to the center of the lake.
By the time Quin had turned off the motor and levered it out of the water, OB had opened the bait and was handing him a pole. OB's shirt had disappeared while Quin was busy with the motor and he took a moment to appreciate the view before baiting his hook and casting his line out into the water. He heard the snap of OB's line being cast into the water and the two of them sat back to enjoy the solitude of the lake, the heat of the afternoon sun and the luxury of jovial companionship.
The hours passed in a combination of low conversations and comfortable silences, intermingled with the excitement of a number of fish biting on their lines. The first few were too small so they were removed from the hooks and tossed back into the water so they could continue to grow. They each pulled on their T-shirts when their skin started to redden and a couple of times OB scooped handfuls of water from the lake and poured it over his head. Finally they managed to catch three good sized lake trout, burying each under the ice in the cooler so they wouldn't spoil. They stopped fishing after they caught the third one, not wanting to catch more than they would be able to eat, and just enjoyed being out on the lake. After OB tossed the unused bait over the side, Quin lowered the motor back into the water and they trolled around a bit. They caught glimpses of other camps set back into the trees as they circled the shore and every so often hearing or seeing groups of children playing in the water on the very warm mid May afternoon.
It was after 4pm when Quin steered the boat back into the cove. OB jumped into the shallower water as soon as the motor stopped, pulling the boat onto the small section of manmade beach. Quin jumped out when it had settled on the dirt bottom and the two quickly unhitched the motor and returned everything to the storage shed. Quin was just locking the door when the sound of a faint splash drew his attention to the lakeshore.
OB was again shirtless and sitting on the end of the wooden dock, dangling his feet in the water. He stood up and turned back to look at Quin. "How about a swim?" he called out, jumping off the end of the dock into the water without waiting for a reply.
Quin pulled off his shirt, walked to the end of the dock and peered down at his friend. "How's the water?"
"A wee bit chilly, just like home," OB replied with a slight shiver. "Would be better if I'd taken off my shorts but I didn't want the boys swimming across the lake to see me in the nip."
"Indeed, that could have scarred them for life," Quin quipped as he jumped into the water. When he surfaced, OB was glaring at him so he figured he'd better clarify the statement. "Those poor boys would spend the next few years watching their flutes and would have been crushed when they failed to measure up to your ample endowments."
"That goes even more for you," OB replied with another shiver before he winked. "Though I think that both of us will be suffering from substantial shrinkage if we stay in here too long." He floated up onto his back for a moment, an evil grin appearing on his face. He swam away a couple of feet then pushed a wave of water into Quin's face with the palm of his hand.
In seconds, the two men were playing like schoolboys, spraying each other with water, wrestling for control, and dunking the other each time one of them got the upper hand. They each swallowed a good amount of water during the barrages, peals of open-mouthed laughter making it difficult to prevent. The underwater wrestling bout shifted as the minutes went on, from power movements seeking control, to tickling, to groping and finally to caresses that spoke of things much more important than dominance.
They walked out of the water side by side, their emotions heated in arousal even though the cold water had prevented a similar physical reaction. They stood in the sun for a few moments, dripping off and allowing it to partially dry them before gathering up their shirts and the cooler and heading for the house. Placing the cooler in the shade on the porch, they closed the door behind them and headed up to the bedroom without a word.
After stripping out of their wet shorts and briefs, the men ended up in each other's arms in the center of the room. "I don't think I'll ever get enough of you," Quin whispered when he finally released OB's mouth.
"I'm not planning on going anywhere unless you want me to," OB replied as he pushed Quin towards the bed. "As a matter of fact, I plan on getting quite a bit closer to you in the very near future."
As soon as felt the edge of the bed against his legs, Quin allowed himself to fall backwards, pulling OB down on top of him in a tangle of limbs. "Nice," he breathed as their skin came together in a multitude of places. They stayed in that position for a long while, kissing and nibbling at every bit of skin that their mouths could reach while their hands did the same. Twenty-four hours together had appeased their most urgent desires so they were content to allow their arousal to build slowly.
An unknown amount of time had passed before just kissing and cuddling seemed no longer enough for OB. He slid down Quin's body, slowly kissing a path to his main objective. He buried his face in the crisp curls framing Quin's penis, inhaling the musky scent that was now tinged with the fresh balm of the lake. Pulling back, he lapped along the length like a cat, the tang of the lake disappearing from the skin as he cleaned it. He had completed about half his task when Quin reached down and grasped his shoulder.
"Turn around," Quin said when OB looked up at him. "I'd like the chance to pleasure you as well and I don't feel like waiting for my turn."
"But I'll get distracted," OB complained even as he rolled onto his side and flipped so his feet were now past Quin's head.
" Consider it a lesson in concentration," Quin chastised, the warm smile in his voice softening his words. "It'll be good practice for when you find your attention wandering during a shoot." He rolled on to his side to face OB, pushing his top leg back to give his lover easier access.
OB gave up on the argument and pillowed his head on Quin's thigh, angling his own leg back before going back to his task. Quin placed his head in a similar position and immediately began lavishing his attention on the flesh jutting out in front of him. They pleasured each other thoroughly, mirroring each other's motions until both of them were awash in sensual bliss. They licked, nipped and sucked every place their mouths could reach from this position, paying special attention to each other's penis, balls, insides of thighs and the sensitive skin at the juncture of hip and leg.
Very little sound was heard in the room as stifled moans and groans were turned into vibrations against cock and skin. They kept the pace they had used when kissing, moving slowly and deliberately to build their arousal without pushing them over the edge. They managed continued the lazy pace for quite some time until Quin wet one finger and traced the opening of OB's body. He waited for OB to copy his motion before he pushed the finger inside and flicked it against the younger man's prostate. His lover's moan of pleasure reverberated over his cock and when OB breached his body, his moan must have done the same.
That additional sensation was all it took to send their arousal skyrocketing and they both sucked on the flesh in their mouths with renewed vigor. OB came first, his semen bathing the inside of Quin's mouth only seconds before his own orgasm overtook him and his release pulsed down his lover's throat. Both men's focus wavered as ecstasy overtook them, but they were too close to the edge for it to even matter.
When he finally gathered up enough strength to move, OB flipped back over so his head was even with Quin's, kissed him gently then snuggled happily into his embrace. "It's so much more than sex with you," OB admitted softly.
"Yes, it is," Quin whispered into the reddish hair, swallowing the 'it's love' his heart was fighting to reveal even as his mind screamed for caution. Relieved that his mind managed to win out this time, he pulled OB tighter against him. For the next hour or so they laid together, not quite sleeping but not quite awake either, floating in the haze of post-orgasmic euphoria.
The rumble of OB's stomach brought him out of his lounging state with a self-depreciating chuckle. "Me hungry gut keeps interrupting our Life of Reilly."
"Well, we have been burning off a lot of energy," Quin replied huskily. He lifted OB's chin so he could reach his lips and kissed him ardently, the melding of their mouths carrying his promise for a more extensive connection later on. Breaking the kiss with an audible sigh, he said, "we'd better get our butts out of this bed and see to dinner. Especially since we have to gut those fish before we can cook them." He looked down at the rather pathetic expression on OB's face and laughed, "And no, I won't bring your dinner to you in bed."
With a heavy groan and a petulant frown, OB rose from the bed and rummaged through his bag for dry clothes. He pulled on briefs and shorts, forgoing a shirt since it was still pleasantly warm and left the room, heading straight down the stairs. Unable to hide his smile at OB, Quin did the same, meeting up with the younger man just as he was coming out of the bathroom.
"I'll get a cutting board, couple of knives and a paper sack for the rubbish," OB said. "It will be less of a mess if we clean the fish on the porch."
Quin nodded and took his turn in the bathroom before heading out onto the porch. Since it was almost 6:30pm, the sun was much lower in the sky but still shone brightly over the crystal blue lake so he grabbed the cooler and he sat down on the steps to take in the view. OB was out a few moments later, implements in hand and years of experience had the two men making short work of cleaning the fish. Quin brought the cleaned fish into the kitchen while OB disposed of the remnants in the metal garbage can before pouring the water from the cooler over the steps and joining Quin in the kitchen.
Cooking dinner was very similar to the previous night. Quin grabbed a cold Guinness as he pulled out the butter and set a warm one on the table for OB. After taking a long swig, Quin heated one of the black pans and seasoned the fish with a number of spices he found in Becky's cupboard before putting them in to fry. OB drank from his beer as he took over the chore of frying potatoes and the meal was soon ready for them to eat.
They sat at the table as they had for the other meals, eating while they exchanged pleasant conversation intermixed with some teasing banter and sexual innuendoes. They cleaned up together, each grabbed another beer and then headed into the living room. OB had noticed a dartboard the previous evening and it took him only a moment to find the dart case. The throwing line was actually carved into the wood floor and they only had to move a small table and a floor lamp to create a clear path.
After a few games of darts with no clear victor, Quin pulled out the checkerboard he had noticed earlier and they engaged in a new sport. Six games found them at a draw but before they could start a seventh, OB yawned hugely. "We probably should call it a night," Quin said. "Between the hours out in the sun, our earlier activities and the Guinness we've consumed, I'm surprised one of us wasn't ready to crash sooner."
"Our time left here is so short, I didn't want to waste it sleeping," OB admitted shyly.
Quin looked intently at the man sitting across from him, reached out to take the hand that was putting away the checkers and avowed, "There'll be other weekends for us. They'll just take a little stealth and some planning. That is, if that's what you want?"
"Definitely," OB insisted. "Plus if I get really good at this cloak and dagger stuff, I could be the next Scot to play Bond," he added with a chuckle.
Not having anything he could reply to that, Quin just helped put away the checkerboard. He brought the empty bottles into the kitchen and got a glass of ice water to bring upstairs while OB used the bathroom. While he took his turn, OB closed the front door, turned off the lights and was waiting at the bottom of the stairs holding the water glass when he emerged.
As they had the night before they used the second bedroom, stripping and slipping into bed in a matter of seconds. They lay comfortably in each other's arms for a while, kissing and petting, just enjoying being naked and touching. The combination of the day was soon starting to overwhelm then and they were dozing between touches and fighting with their bodies to stay awake. Quin dropped a kiss to the top of OB's head, rolled him onto his side and spooned in tightly behind him. "Let's get some sleep. We can continue this is the morning when we're both awake enough to fully enjoy it."
"Mmmm," was his only reply, so he twined his fingers with OB's over the younger man's stomach and drifted off to sleep.
Quin woke in the same position he had fallen asleep in, to the feeling of OB kissing the fingers of their joined hands and rocking backwards into his morning erection. "Morning," he mumbled as he pressed a kiss to the shoulder beneath his lips.
"Good morning," OB replied, sounding a lot more awake than Quin had. "I think I'll miss this most of all," he admitted softly. "The feel of you behind me as we sleep, waking up with your arms around me and your morning boner pressing against my arse like it knows just where it belongs." When Quin tried to turn him around, he twisted his head to look back at him and asked, "Will you take me just like this? I want to feel you pressing into my body slowly, moving inside me in gentle strokes as our joined hands stroke my cock. A long slow fuck that I can remember on those long, lonely nights when I'm stuck in that nasty hotel, pretending that it's a home."
Without another word, Quin pulled his hand from OB's, reached for the lube on the bedside table and began preparing his lover. He slid his coated finger slowly into the smooth passage, all the while placing light kisses and nips over the man's back. He stretched the tight opening as his fingers spread the slick lube until three fingers slid easily in and out of OB's body. Removing his fingers, he placed the head of his cock against OB's anus and pushed forward in tiny increments just as his lover had requested. He rocked his hips back and forth, slipping in a little further with each movement as OB joined their hands again, guiding his slick fingers to stroke lightly over his lover's erection.
They continued the slow pace for an unknown period of time. Quin would still completely within OB when he got too close and wait for his need to flag a bit before beginning the slow motions again. Finally after four or five times of this, they were both moaning almost continually, soft whimpers of need, lust and something more that would no longer be denied. "Do you have any scenes to film shirtless next week? Quin asked, the question seeming to come out of nowhere.
"No, why?" OB panted in obvious confusion.
"Good," was the only reply Quin managed before he pressed his mouth against the fleshy part of OB's right shoulder and stroked in hard. As the pace of his strokes into his lover's body increased, the suction of his mouth increased also, drawing a dark circle of blood to the surface of the sun-kissed skin. Soon they were lost in the power of their lovemaking, no longer able to hold the slower pace. Quin snapped his hips forward, slamming into OB's body before pulling back and repeating the motion. He tightened his grip on OB's cock to match his pace and within seconds his balls had pulled taut. With a loud groan, his orgasm exploded from him, his release coursing into OB's body in thick jets. He was only barely aware of OB's hand squeezing down on his but he absently increased the pressure and, after a few more seconds, he felt the liquid warmth of OB's semen coating their joined hands.
When he was finally able to make his body move, OB turned in Quin's arms and kissed him passionately. "That was bloody marvelous. Thank you," he said as he pulled back and then buried his face in the crook of Quin's neck.
"I must say I enjoyed it immensely myself but you're welcome," Quin replied. He stroked a hand along the length of OB's back, relishing the shudder than ran through the younger man when his thumb pressed against the passion mark.
They lay together for a short time in silence. Years of hiding and a few painful betrayals made Quin both unable and unwilling to speak the words trying to worm their way out of his heart. OB was still very young and at the cusp of what could be a highly successful career and those two things could make changes happen for the young man very rapidly. He was sure now that he wanted much more than a brief fling with this wonderful man but he needed to move forward slowly to protect both of them.
They rose from the bed together after another brief interlude of kisses and caresses, with Quin taking the first turn in the shower. By the time he emerged with a towel wrapped around his waist, OB was busy in the kitchen and the aroma of perking coffee and cooking sausages was filling the air.
"Hurry up and get dressed," OB ordered. "Breakfast is almost ready."
"Yes, sir," Quin quipped as he bounded up the stairs, returning in a matter of minutes in a pair of shorts. He sat down at the table and had managed one sip of his juice before a heaping plate of hotcakes and sausages was plunked down in front of him. "Looks and smells great."
When OB had filled his own plate and coffee mugs for each of them, he sat across from Quin. "Thanks. I'm not much of a cook but I've always had a knack for hotcakes."
After taking a few bites and a sip of coffee, Quin asked the question that had been nagging at him since their morning lovemaking. "Why are you still staying in a hotel, OB?"
OB finished chewing then replied. "At first it was a money thing. I wasn't sure if Paul Koon was just blowing smoke when he said he'd be able to find me plenty of work and I only had a little savings. The last few weeks, I've just been too busy to look and I don't want to trust something so important to some real estate bloke. Hopefully I'll find time when we get back to LA because I really want to get out of that place."
"Is it that bad?" Quin asked, his concern for his new lover deepening.
"I'm really making it sound worse than it is, I think," OB insisted. "The place is clean although a bit dreary, in a decent neighborhood and in easy walking or cab distance to the studio since I haven't had time to get my license changed or look for a car either. It's just small and dingy and I hate eating in restaurants all the time."
"Well, I have an alternative to offer if you're interested. There is a small guest house on my property that is currently unoccupied and I would be more than happy to let you use it for however long you need," Quin said. At OB's look of confused apprehension, he continued quickly, wanting to make sure his offer wasn't misinterpreted. "No strings attached, OB. You would have your privacy as the house is situated on the other side of the pool and tennis courts."
"That's a very generous offer, Quin, but I don't want to take advantage of our friendship," OB argued even though he appeared interested.
"You wouldn't be," Quin reassured. "Over the years, a number of people have crashed in that house, both close friends like Xan and Mace and people I only know casually like Sam." He reached across the table and placed his hand on top of OB's. "I'm not saying I wouldn't relish the idea of having you across the yard but that's not why I'm offering. You're new to LA and to the business and I'd like to do what I can to make the transition easier for you. If using the house for a while would do that, great."
"It's a very tempting offer, Quin. You have no idea how tempting," OB answered shifting his hand to the top of Quin's. "I just wouldn't want things to become awkward for you if things cooled off between us and you suddenly felt uncomfortable having me living in your backyard."
"I wouldn't worry about that, OB. Hell, I let Dena Billings stay there for a couple months after her last divorce and the sound of the woman's voice makes my skin crawl," Quin scoffed.
"You've made your point," OB chuckled. "I promise I'll think about it, okay."
"Okay," Quin agreed as he dove back into his breakfast and saw OB do the same.
They finished breakfast without much more talking and OB took his shower while Quin cleaned up from their meal. They still had about three hours before Adam arrive so they decided to pull out the canoe and take another tour of the lake. They both managed to get into the canoe from the shore without too much trouble but it was a very different story when they flipped it in the middle of the lake. Try as they might they couldn't manage to climb back into it after they turned it upright, so they swam over to a shallower section, pushing the canoe in front of them, to bail it and get back inside. After that they stayed closer to the shore, making it easier to bail the canoe and climb back inside the four other times they dumped it.
They were both beginning to feel a bit disheartened at the idea of leaving by the time they got back to the camp and put the canoe back into the storage shed. They had about an hour left when they headed back into the house and they used the time to set the place back to rights. They carried on a light conversation as they worked together in the kitchen but it was a mere shadow of their earlier ones. Quin wrapped the steaks they hadn't eaten and placed them in the small freezer for the O'Shea's to enjoy at a later time. He poured the milk and juice down the drain but left the other things in the refrigerator while OB took the rest of the supplies they hadn't used and stored them in the cupboards.
When they had the kitchen spic and span, OB cleaned the bathroom while Quin picked up the living rooms and swept all the floors. They headed upstairs when they were done, remaking the beds they had slept in with fresh linens from the closet in the bathroom and stuffing the dirty linens and towels into one of the pillowcases. Finally, all that was left for them to do was dress in more appropriate clothes for traveling and repack.
As Quin paused, standing there in just his briefs, OB crossed the room and slipped into his arms. They stayed like that for a few minutes, taking this last opportunity to kiss and touch freely before the restrictions of society were once again thrust upon them. Only when they saw that it was quarter to one, did OB step out of Quin's arms with a reluctant sigh. "Guess we'd better finish getting dressed and packing."
After two more gentle kisses, Quin walked back to the bed and pulled his clothes out of his duffle. He dressed in a light blue, long sleeved oxford shirt, navy chinos and loafers and looked much the part of a middle-aged professional on vacation. OB was almost his polar opposite, dressed in a chambray shirt, jeans and black laced up boots, looking more like a college kid than a twenty-seven year old actor. They stuffed their dirty clothes into their bags, straightened the blankets on the bed and headed downstairs.
They loaded their stuff in the trunk and Quin slipped his duffle into his larger suitcase so he only had one bag to check. They placed the bag of linens next to the car and slid the metal garbage can into the driveway, needing to ask Adam where they could dispose of the trash. They were just walking back to the house when the sound of an engine drew their attention and they turned back to see a beat up pick-up truck pull into the driveway.
" How was the fishing?" Adam asked as he jumped from the cab.
"Pretty good and the whole weekend was very relaxing," Quin replied. "Thank your parents again for letting us use the place."
"My dad said anytime you want to come back, just let him know," Adam said. "You have an open invitation, both of you."
"Thanks, I might just take them up on that," Quin said with a smile. "We changed the beds and cleaned everything up. The only thing I didn't do yet was extinguish the pilot lights. That and we need to know what to do with the garbage," he added as they headed into the house.
"I'll toss the garbage in the back of the truck," Adam said. "Tends to attract raccoons if we leave it up here."
It only took a few minutes to put out the pilot lights and secure the house. Quin buried a pang of regret as he handed Adam the keys, wondering if he and OB would ever again get the chance to be so free. After Adam tossed the garbage and laundry into the bed of the truck, he pulled some papers from the visor. "I wasn't sure how familiar you were with driving around New York City so I asked one of the limo drivers to map out the best route for you." He handed Quin a map, route and exit numbers marked in red pen along the route. "Oh and this is from my mum. Copies of the pictures she took on Friday."
"That was fast," Quin said as he placed the white envelope into his shirt pocket.
"She and my dad have a friend that owns a photography studio," Adam explained. "She badgered him relentlessly to develop them on Saturday then swore him to secrecy when he recognized you. I tucked my parent's address in the envelope because you said before that you wanted it."
"Thanks, and you have my number in LA," Quin said. "If you decide to pursue a career on a film crew, call me and I'll set you up with the right people."
"I will," Adam answered. "Have a safe trip, you guys. It was really an honor to meet both of you." His eyes took on a sparkle as he added, "Tonight in the pub, I'll be the man of the hour when my friends find out what I spent the last week doing and who I was doing it with. Maybe it'll help me get some chicks."
"I'm sure it will," OB replied with a wink. "You'll be fending off the women with a stick."
"From your mouth to God's ears, OB," Adam replied as Quin slid into the driver's seat of the car. "I'll lead you down to the thruway and then you have a straight shot until you get about thirty miles from the airport. After that it gets tricky so, OB, you'll probably have to navigate."
"No problem," OB said as he climbed in the other side of the car. "Thanks again, Adam, and I hope you get lucky."
Adam jumped in the truck and took off down the dirt road and Quin followed close behind. It was just as confusing on the way out as it had been on the way in and Quin was relieved when Adam pulled onto the semi-paved road that he remembered led to the thruway. With fifteen minutes, they were driving up the entrance ramp and truly on their own.
Their conversation was a bit more subdued than on the way up but they managed to find enough neutral topics to fill the time. OB managed to find a radio station he was happy with and kept it on that station for most of the trip. The trip was very non-eventful until the reached the outskirts of the city. OB turned the radio way down and continually shifted his focus between the highway signs and the map draped over his lap. The traffic was very heavy as they got closer to the airport and it was harder to make quick lane changes. They managed to make it through without too many problems, only missing an exit and having to backtrack once, though both men were visibly relieved when the entrance road to the airport came in view.
Finding their way to the terminal and the car rental office was pretty easy and they were parking in a rental return spot about ten minutes after they entered the airport grounds. They grabbed their luggage from the trunk and it only took them a few minutes for Quin to return the keys, confirm that the Albany office had arranged for pick up and get back his deposit. Having plenty of time, they walked slowly to the Pan Am ticket counter. They repeatedly heard whispers of "that's Quinlan Jinnai" and "who's that guy with him," but avoided getting into conversations with anyone but the ticket agent.
Tickets in hand, they headed to the first class lounge closest to their departure gate and spent the last fifteen minutes before their plane boarded enjoying a glass of Black Bush and quiet conversation.
"I've been thinking about your offer," OB said softly, staring into his half-empty glass.
"And?" Quin asked, suddenly feeling very nervous.
"If the offer is still open, I'd like to take you up on it," OB replied. "At least until I find more permanent lodging."
"You can even stay there tonight if you want," Quin said. "After all, you have your bag and you can pick up the rest of your stuff when filming is done tomorrow."
After looking around to make sure no one was within earshot, OB leaned in and replied huskily. "Well, I was sort of hoping for a different offer of accommodations for tonight. If I remember correctly, I still have a portion of a wager to pay up on."
"I think we can come up with some type of suitable arrangement," Quin replied. Before he could say anything else, they heard the loudspeaker announcement for the boarding of their flight. Both men downed the rest of their drinks and then headed down in the direction of the gate.
They waited to board with the last passengers, Quin not wanting to have to endure all the other passengers staring at him as they walked by. They were seated in the last row of first class, with the partition behind them and no one seated in the row either beside or in front of them. They had another drink after the plane was airborne, having to settle for scotch since the plane didn't stock Irish whiskey. They dove into their meals with relish, not having had more than some chips and peanuts purchased at the rest area when they took a bathroom break during the drive.
After the meals had been collected, the stewardess brought them each a pillow and blanket and they leaned their seats back and got comfortable. It was easy to twine their fingers together under the cover of the blankets and they took the opportunity to touch for the first time since they got out of the car. They continued to chat for a while talking about filming and other safe subjects until OB began to yawn.
When OB's eyes had drifted shut and he started to doze, Quin shifted in his seat to get more comfortable and the envelope he had forgotten in his pocket poked into his chest. Pulling it out, he looked absently through the pictures until one he knew he hadn't posed for caught he attention. The picture showed he, OB and Danny O'Shea standing in front of the storage shed. Danny was pointing out something inside the shed to the two men and though a casual look at the picture wouldn't have shown anything odd, a closer look by a knowledgeable eye told a completely different story. Quin was paying attention to Danny but OB was definitely not. Instead of looking where Danny O'Shea was pointing, OB was looking intently at Quin, his eyes shining with combination of devotion and desire.
As Quin studied the image, his heart swelled with the implications of that unguarded look. Although neither of them had actually said the words aloud, it was easy to see in OB's expression that this was more than a casual fling for him too and Quin's mind had been fighting the feelings growing inside his heart since the first quick encounter they had shared in his bedroom. He would move slowly allowing their friendship to grow along with their feelings and, if he was lucky, they would be able to build a life together or at least as much of a life as society would allow two men who have to hide the fact that they are lovers. Placing the picture reverently back into the envelope, he stored the image in his mind, knowing he could replay the cherished token during the difficult times and it would be enough to sustain him while they struggled through the difficulties inherent in forging their publicly censured partnership.
Epilogue - about a year later
Quin sat back in the makeup chair, watching the final seconds of OB's interview with channel 9's entertainment news reporter. The goings on of the film industry was big news in a town like LA and competition was fierce to get scoops on the high profile actors. The studio had arranged for them to do interviews with the elite among reporters, Amy Nabier, to coincide with tonight's LA premiere of 'Nikkos' Boys'. OB's interview would appear on the 6 o'clock news and Quin's would appear at eleven, along with red carpet footage from the charity screening.
Fighting valiantly to hide his smile of pride, Quin watched OB handle even the most delving questions with casual confidence. OB had grown so much in the year they had been together, from a green kid from Scotland to an actor whose sense of aplomb would stand up to the most seasoned of their counterparts.
When the camera stopped rolling, OB rose from his chair. His faced morphed into his most charming smile and after placing kiss on each of the woman's cheeks, he strutted off the set, only the quick wink he tossed at Quin showing any indication that he even knew the man was there.
Quin moved quickly to take the seat OB had vacated and in seconds the cameraman was counting down to the start of the taped interview.
"Good evening, everyone," Amy said to the camera. "Tonight I have the pleasure of bring you a real treat, an interview with the highly sought after Quinlan Jinnai, star of Saber Studios' new film, 'Nikkos' Boys'. Good evening, Quin."
"Good evening, Amy. It's a pleasure to be here," Quin replied and the questions began fast and furious. For the most part, the questions centered on the film, the story, the trials and tribulations of filming a period piece, the various shooting locations. It wasn't until the cameraman held up the two-minute sign that the tone of the questions changed.
"Rumor has it that Odhran Kendrick is still living in your guesthouse, Quin," Amy baited. "Isn't it a little strange that an up and coming star like Odhran hasn't moved into his own place?"
Shrugging his shoulders nonchalantly, Quin refused to rise to the bait. "A number of people have stayed in that house over the years. And it has advantages for both of us. It's close to the studio, I don't have to worry about the place being empty when I'm on location, my housekeeper enjoys mothering single men and I have a built in tennis partner. He's welcome to stay as long as it's convenient for him, though I expect that'll only be until some sweet young thing steals his heart and secrets him off to get married." Although he didn't bother to look up, Quin knew OB was standing off in the wings and could almost hear the stifled snort that comment would have caused.
"Yes, it seems that Odhran has been seen on more than one occasion with the new Bond girl, Sissy Tachel," Amy remarked. "Do you think there are wedding bells in their future?"
Quin raised his hands in mock surrender. "That's a question you would have to ask Mr. Kendrick or Miss Tachel. I have enough trouble keeping track of my own love life." Again he could almost imagine the caustic, 'you'd better not have any other love life' that would be blazing in OB's eyes.
"Speaking of your love life, any special woman monopolizing your time these days, Quin?" Amy asked.
"With all the beauties in Hollywood, there is no way I could settle on just one, Amy," Quin replied with a suggestive smile.
"Well, that's all the time we have for tonight," Amy said. "Thanks for joining us, Quin, and I hope your new movie cleans house at this year's Oscars."
"My pleasure, Amy," Quin replied just before the red camera light winked off. He said his good-byes, a little more sedately than OB by just shaking Amy's hand, and then headed towards the back of the room.
He knew OB would be waiting inconspicuously for him. In the past year they had both gotten very good at waiting without looking like they were waiting. Together they would head home to get ready for tonight's premiere. Looking at his watch, he saw they still had over two hours until the limo would be picking them up to take them to the theater. Hopefully, that would be enough time for OB to remind him, without a shadow of a doubt, just why there would never be any special woman monopolizing his time.