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Glimpse 7: Tie-Dye and Paisley Print

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Apolo has a lot of bandanas. Like a lot a lot. Not just a bunch, like JR’s mother has rooster plates, or his dad has Seahawk hats. But a LOT. He buys them every single time he sees them, even years after he’s done competing he’ll go out for milk and come back with a blue and white one that he found for sale at the grocery store, or he’ll go out to get the tires changed and come back with a Goodyear promotional bandana that JR knows he will never ever actually wear.

It’s not an obsession. He doesn’t need them. He doesn’t have them carefully organized and categorized. In fact it’s probably the most disorganized part of Apolo’s life, actually. He’s a neat freak at the best of times, but when it comes to his bandanas he’s remarkably not so freakishly neat.

They drive JR crazy at first. He moves in with Apolo, and suddenly he’s finding them everywhere. They’re in every drawer in the dresser, both the nightstands, even the bathroom drawers. He finds them in the bottom of the closet, under the kitchen sink, even stuffed down in the couch. There is a stack of them kept piled up next to the bench press in the home gym, and an entire shopping bag full of them in the front hall closet.

You’d think there could only be so many designs, that eventually they’d get repetitive and new ones would be hard to find, but they’re not really. Sure there’s the traditional bandana pattern of white and black paisley over a solid background; which is, in the end a fairly common design. But the bandana world is much more diverse than just that. And Apolo is not discriminating. He’s got plain colored ones, color blocked ones, tie-dyed ones, promotional ones printed with logos or slogans, and even ones made up of repeated picture patterns, like little American flags or the Olympic logo. JR laughs himself silly when he finds one that’s covered in cartoon rubber ducks, and another that’s covered in anime versions of various foodstuffs. And the fact is that Apolo just keeps bringing more and more of them home. Until JR can’t go anywhere in the house without finding one of them jammed into the top desk drawer in his office, or folded neatly next to the coffee maker in the kitchen. He even starts finding them in his car. His car, his, not Apolo’s.

One night, they’re curled toward each other on the couch watching some random kill or be killed action flick and eating take out Chinese when JR finally asks him about it. He moves the latest issue of Sports Illustrated to the far side of the coffee table so he can set down his mu shu pork and finds a black and grey bandana folded neatly and pressed flat under where the magazine was resting. He picks it up, unfolds it, refolds it, and then runs his fingers along the pressed seams.

“So… bandanas?” he prompts, eyeing Apolo out the corner of his eye. Apolo’s smile is bright and wide, the expression taking over his face before he can rein it back in. He shrugs his shoulders swallowing his mouth full of stir fry veggies and rice, and setting the contained down between them on the table. He reaches over and takes the bandana from JR, rubbing it out flat across the top of his thigh.

“I don’t know. I like them. I like the colors, the variety. I’ve been collecting them since I was a kid. I started to use them when I first did inline, you know that?” Apolo asks, and JR nods, turning the sound down on the TV, and rotating in his seat to face Apolo. Apolo shrugs his shoulders. “My dad was always bringing home new ones for me. I lost a lot of them, and some would get pretty nasty have to be thrown away. I always needed new ones. Every time he saw them on sale, or found a cool pattern he’d bring me a bunch. Of all the things a kid could collect, this was fairly low maintenance and pretty cheap. Never really stopped.” He finishes smoothing out all the creases, and starts his standard practice of folding it into his infamous headband/sweatband combo. JR watches his hands work. Watches long thin fingers, fold and adjust, refold and press down, rolling it swiftly into the appropriate size and shape. It’s strangely erotic watching Apolo’s hands work. He watches Apolo lift the bandana up and tie it around his own head, fingers well practiced and experienced as he knots it tightly, and gives JR a grin. JR smiles back, but his mouth has gone dry and all he’s thinking about are the possibilities. The options available to him. “Seriously? You’re turned on right now? They just blew up an entire busload of people? There are severed limbs flying everywhere on the TV screen!” Apolo says, pointing at the television. JR glances at the movie, eyes not really focusing on it, before letting his gaze slide back to Apolo. He shrugs and gives a little grin, pushing himself up and over to straddle Apolo’s lap.

“It’s not the TV that turned me on, but you’re not really complaining are you?” he asks. Apolo laughs, the big belly laugh that always gets JR and makes his heart feel warm and full to bursting. Apolo’s hands settle on his hips and give them a squeeze before sliding up JR’s back, pushing his t-shirt out of the way as they move.

“Never. It’s one of the perks of having a boyfriend who is so much younger than I am,” he teases and JR shakes his head even as he laughs. Instead of replying with words, JR presses his mouth to Apolo’s, pushing his body tight to Apolo’s, rubbing his erection against the flat of Apolo’s belly, and sliding his hands up Apolo’s shoulders to sink into his too long hair. His fingers keep going deeper, until he feels Apolo’s scalp against his fingertips. He scratches lightly, delighting in the unconscious moan Apolo lets out and the way he shivers against him, mouth dropping open wider. JR smiles into the kiss, and pulls him closer, the tip of one thumb following the edge of the bandana across Apolo’s temple. ‘Hmmm…’ he thinks, ‘possibilities.’


JR’s not sure how he’s the one to come up with the idea, let alone execute it. He blames it on a bad night of insomnia, right before finals. He’d been too exhausted to study any longer, but too awake to sleep. He’d ended up slumped on the living room couch staring blearily at TV as infomercial after infomercial had played across the screen. It’s not until the thing arrives six to eight weeks later that he even remembers ordering it.

It’s nothing special, just some drawer dividers, expandable to fit ‘any standard sized drawer!’ to keep small items organized in a larger space. It’s only luck that Apolo’s out of town for the weekend, having flown out to SLC for one of U.S. Speedskating’s semi-annual meetings. He ends up carting the box upstairs and unpacking it there, sitting cross-legged on their bed as he pieces the thing together. It only takes three tries and an hour of fiddling to get the whole thing set up. The second set takes less time once he’s got it figured out. The next step is to go through their dresser for some creative reorganization. While he moves things around to make space, he keeps an eye out for any bandanas tucked away amid the socks and t-shirts, gym shorts, and pajama pants.

By the time he’s got the system installed in the second drawer of the dresser, and combed through the rest of the clothes for any wayward bandanas, he’s accumulated quite a pile of them on the end of the bed. And so begins The Great Bandana Search of 2016. He combs through the bedroom, the master bath, the kitchen, and the office, every room in the house, collecting the colorful little things, and taking them all upstairs.

It’s a little intimidating seeing them all piled up together in one big mound like that, but JR takes a deep breath and gets folding. It takes two hours to fold and sort them into appropriate piles. Then he starts stacking, and putting away. He arranges them so that one of the folds of each perfect square faces up, sliding them into place like you would CDs or books. The whole endeavor takes about 4 hours total and JR looks down proudly at the rainbow of bandanas stretching from one side of the dresser to the other in a zigzag of brightness and riotous patterns. He closes the drawer with a sense of satisfaction at a job well done that he thinks Apolo would completely comprehend.

Apolo gets home two hours later, and after getting his hello make-out session on the couch JR follows him upstairs with his History of Public Spaces textbook to catch up. JR stations himself at the head of the bed, back to the wooden headboard, and text open in his lap as he watches Apolo hang up his suit jacket in the closet and then start to unpack. This is typical Apolo really. He can’t leave it for later. He has to get this type of thing done right away.

JR watches over the top of his book as Apolo pulls out his toiletry bag and goes to put everything away, all while going on about the newest short track related gossip. He’s returned with official news about the National team, and plenty of low level relationship based scandal to share.

JR responds to each bit of information as necessary, eyes watching Apolo emptying out his dirty clothes into the hamper, and putting his shoes away in the bottom of the closet before moving to pull the unused socks and underwear out of the side pocket of his suitcase. It’s only then that Apolo approaches the dresser. He yanks open the top drawer, while sharing some tidbit of info about Pete getting caught by the head coach getting a BJ from his girlfriend during lunch break (in the team locker room of all possible places!), when he freezes. JR lowers his book, watching carefully as Apolo’s forehead creases as he looks at the rearranged dresser drawer.

“JR?” he asks, turning to look over his shoulder, one eyebrow raised in question. “Feeling organizational while I was gone?” he asks, looking vaguely worried but also amused. JR grinned. He nods at the dresser.

“Keep going,” he prompts, he blindly turns a page in his text book, faking nonchalance as Apolo closes the top drawer and opens the second. JR’s eyes take in his expression, his body language as he stares wordlessly down at the perfectly organized drawer. He waits for Apolo’s body to go rigid with tension, or anger. For his forehead to crease with confusion, but instead he stays relaxed and his expression remains intrigued. He watches as Apolo reaches out and runs one long finger down the first column of bandanas, and up the second.

“You organized them?” he asks without turning around. JR closes the book.

“Yes,” he says simply, setting it down on the nightstand.

“All of them?” Apolo asks, eyes scanning across the length of the drawer. JR stands up from the bed, beginning to worry at the non-reaction he’s gotten so far.

“Yes. I found them everywhere. I left the nasty ones we had under the sink for dusting, and the stack in the gym for when you need one fast and don’t want to come all the way up here, but I figured this way they’d be all in one place for you,” he explains. Apolo pulls one of the bright red ones free from the top left corner and stares at it’s perfectly folded corners. He turns to look at JR.

“You did this for me?” he asks, and there’s something soft in his expression. Something very different from the serious/happy/dorky/sexy Apolo that JR’s usually faced with. He nods, taking a hesitant step closer.

“Is that… ok?” he asks. He watches Apolo lick his lips, mouth stretching up into a big smile. Apolo closes the gap between them, hands reaching out for JR, and gripping him at the waist, tugs him in.

“It’s more than ok!” he says, letting out a small laugh. “You organized for me. You took something you knew I liked, and you did something special with it for me. I don’t know how to react to this.” JR’s face scrunches up in reaction.

“I do know how to organize stuff. I’m not incapable of putting things away or arranging them in a specific order,” JR objects, even as he lets Apolo’s body press all along his from thighs to chest. Apolo’s arms wind around his hips, pulling them flush against each other. JR pouts, turning his head away.

“I know that. But you wouldn’t normally spend… how many hours? Going through the whole house to find every last bandana I own and then even more time folding, categorizing, and putting them all away. You did it for me. Because you knew I’d like it,” Apolo teases, pressing a kiss to the corner of JR’s jaw. JR’s smile is unstoppable, and he ducks his head to try and hide it.

“How do you know I did it for you? Maybe I got tired of finding them tucked away in every corner, cushion, and drawer in this house,” he says, letting his hands slide around and then up Apolo’s back. “Maybe I was being selfish,” he offers, turning his face back toward Apolo’s. Apolo laughs again, pressing his forehead to JR’s.

“You’re one of the least selfish people I’ve ever met. Admit it. You did it for me.” JR sighs, nodding his head, and watching the grin on Apolo’s face stretch even wider. “I knew it!” he says triumphantly, yanking JR’s hips in closer to his. JR gasps, feeling Apolo’s dick press suddenly against his, already hard.

“Jesus!” he laughs. “Please tell me that my having organized something doesn’t make you hard. That’s not a kink now is it?” he asks. Apolo shakes his head, lips pressing firm and wet against JR’s for a moment before pulling back to answer.

“No, not an organizational thing. More of a having an awesome boyfriend thing…” he teases, teeth nipping at JR’s chin. JR grins back, ducking his head forward to take Apolo’s mouth with his own. It’s only then that he notices Apolo had been steadily backing him up toward the side of the bed. He gives a good shove to the center of JR’s chest, their lips pulling apart as he flops backward, bouncing twice before settling on the bed, spread out like a starfish and expression shocked. “Now, you get your reward,” Apolo says climbing onto the bed, and throwing one leg over JR’s hips to straddle his waist. Apolo slides his hands up JR’s arms, pulling them and together above his head, and then producing that same red bandana from before.

JR doesn’t realize what’s happening until his hands are tied to the headboard, and it’s too late to struggle. He gapes up at Apolo, eyes wide, and face flushing with sudden intense arousal. Apolo braces himself against the mattress, sliding down JR’s body to put them face to face and crotch to crotch.

“Ok?” he asks, rocking his hips just a little. JR gasps and nods, mouth still dropped open in surprise.

“Yeah,” he whispers. He tugs at his wrists experimentally, but Apolo grips them with one hand to still the motion.

“It’s only for fun. If you tug they’ll come undone,” he warns. JR nods, sliding his fingers through the slats of the head board, and gripping the solid wood more tightly. He squirms underneath Apolo’s weight.

“Now that you’ve got me, what are you going to do with me?” he asks. Apolo’s answering grin is devilish.


What he does with JR is pull out every trick in his considerable arsenal to transform JR into a writhing mess of sweat and heat, want and undeniable need. There is begging involved. And possibly threats of violence before he finally lets JR come. JR pants up at the ceiling, hands squeezing so hard at the headboard that his fingers ache, the bandana still tied securely around his wrists. He picks his head up to look down the flat of his belly at Apolo, chest panting for air and thighs still trembling with aftershocks.

Apolo grins at him, licking his lips, and letting his head rest on JR’s knee, breath gusting across JR’s inner thigh and spent dick.

“God damn, you should be illegal,” JR says dropping his head down onto the pillow and squeezing Apolo’s waist with his knees. “C’mere,” he says. Apolo does, crawling up the bed to stretch out on top of JR, his hips slotting into place between JR’s thighs. “I love you,” JR whispers, stretching up to press his forehead to Apolo’s, his mouth ghosting over the other mans with intent. Apolo ducks down pressing his mouth to JR’s in a heated kiss that has JR arching against him. They break the kiss. “Apolo.. fuck me. Please,” he whispers staring into Apolo’s eyes. Apolo grins at him, sitting back and reaching down with both hands to tug JR’s hips up and in. JR slides down the bed, his arms stretching tighter above him, pulling his whole body taunt and making him cry out in surprise.

“Ok?” Apolo asks. JR nods, closing his eyes and flexing up against Apolo’s body.

“Come on,” he whines, gripping the headboard tighter and wiggling his hips that much closer to Apolo’s. That little shimmy pretty much destroys what little resistance Apolo still has against him.

They’re well practiced at this now, and it takes only seconds before Apolo’s pressing up and inside. JR arches up against him, moaning low and long and letting him inside deep. Apolo groans, leaning down to press his mouth to JR’s, and to nip at the other man’s lips. JR squeezes his inner muscles hard around Apolo’s dick, and bites at his lips.

“Fuck me!” he urges and Apolo does. For JR it seems to take forever and yet can never last long enough. The thrusts are fast and hard and steady, powerful thigh muscles giving them that much more strength. By the time Apolo’s close to coming JR’s hard again already.

He twists his wrists in the bandana, nails digging into the wood frame and lets out a whining cry of want that causes Apolo’s hips to stutter. He reaches down, wrapping one hand around the length of JR’s dick and squeezing. He gives it a few sharp tugs, and JR yells out his name, arching into his arms so hard his back cracks. He comes loudly just a half second later, wet hot splashing up between their bellies. Apolo thrusts a half dozen times more and presses deep, his orgasm ripping through him.

The two of them collapse, sweaty and exhausted on bare sheets. Apolo reaches up with one lazy hand to untie JR’s wrists, pulling them down and rubbing at them gently.

“Ok?” he asks, mouthing at JR’s shoulder. JR nods, fighting back a yawn.

“More than ok. I should totally organize more often if this is the thanks I’ll get for my trouble,” JR teases. Apolo laughs, kissing the side of JR’s neck.

“Feel free too. I’m all for vaguely kinky sex with my hot boyfriend.”

“Vaguely kinky?” JR asks and he starts to laugh. “Oh my God, you are so vanilla!” JR says, practically howling with mirth as he starts to roll away. But Apolo reaches out, and wraps his arms around JR’s waist, yanking him back into Apolo’s chest.

“Have you looked at my skin lately?” Apolo asks, holding out one arm where JR can easily see it. “I’m a nice sweet mocha latte, not much vanilla in me at all,” he counters. JR laughs, snuggling back against him, tipping his head back to rest on Apolo’s shoulder.

“You have a point. But if you want to prove just how kinky you can be, I’ve got some interesting ideas for other ways we could use those extra bandanas of yours, if you’re interested,” he offers. Apolo grins, sliding one knee in to rest between JR’s.

“Oh I’m definitely interested,” Apolo promises. He reaches up and grabs the bandana from where it’s still half tied around the headboard rails. He tosses it onto the nightstand and turns all his attention back to JR.

“Well most obviously, how do you feel about blindfolds?” JR asks.


The end.