Stan had been packing, unpacking, and re-packing for literally hours, worrying about whether he had enough stuff, or too much stuff, or the wrong stuff. Finally he reached the point of throwing up his hands and just going with what he had -- after making sure that what he had included his uniform, swim trunks, toiletries, and the Special Bag for Lawrence. Oh, and a change of underwear, which had been packed, pulled out in one of the unpacking phases, and he almost but not quite forgot to pack it again. Then he picked up the phone.
"Lawrence? I'm on my way over with your birthday present. Part of it is a road trip; pack your swim trunks and a change of clothes, and leave a note for your mom that you won't be home tonight."
Driving over to Lawrence's house, Stan caught himself whistling -- and then laughed when he realized that the song he was whistling was "I Gotta Feeling". Yes, tonight's going to be a good night, he thought. It's time.
Road trip?, Lawrence thought as he hung up the phone. That's weird. But Stan must know what he's doing -- he always does. He threw some clothes, his uniform coat and goggles, toiletries, and his swim trunks into a bag, and left a note on the kitchen table for his mother. Not that she would care -- or, perhaps, even notice -- that he was out all night, but it was the polite thing to do. Stan had taught him a lot about how to do the everyday polite things that most people expected you to do. He couldn't help but notice that his life had been running more smoothly since he started hanging out with Stan.
Stan's silver Ford Fiesta drew up in front of the house. It was a nice little car, bought used but in good condition, that Stan had gotten for his 18th birthday; Stan's parents had bought it for him and he was paying them back. Lawrence sometimes envied him the freedom of movement that came with not having to rely on your feet or public transportation. It would be a long time before he could afford to buy a car.
He threw his bag into the back seat. Stan's bag was there too, but he didn't see anything that looked as if it could be a present. Maybe it was in the trunk? He climbed into the passenger seat, and Stan leaned over and kissed him on the cheek -- which was something he didn't do often, and it made Lawrence feel warm all over.
"Happy birthday," Stan said. "Does it feel any different?"
"To be legal, you mean? Not really. I'm the same person I was yesterday, but the law doesn't see me the same way."
"Yeah, that's how it was for me, too." Stan cruised down the street and turned onto the I-80E entrance ramp.
"Where are we going?" Lawrence asked.
"To Des Moines."
"What's in Des Moines?"
Stan turned off the highway on the western outskirts of Des Moines. He'd looked up the directions to the Hilton Garden Inn, and it wasn't hard to find. The look on Lawrence's face as they pulled into the driveway was somewhere between awed and terrified. "Stan, why -- what are we doing here?" he asked.
"This is where we're spending the night."
Lawrence sputtered, "Are you nuts? This place must cost a fortune! I can't let you-"
"Birthday, remember?" Stan said. "We agreed, I'm allowed to spend money on you for special occasions. And it doesn't cost as much as you probably think. I asked Hefty for a recommendation, and he asked a friend of his who travels a lot." He opened the car door. "You wait here while I get us checked in."
This was the first time Stan had checked into a hotel on his own, but it wasn't as if he hadn't watched his father do it. He'd made the reservation online, using the credit card his parents had helped him apply for when he turned 18. They had told him to use it judiciously, for things that would be easy to pay off, so that he would have a credit record built up when he needed it. He was a little nervous, but he walked up to the front desk as if it was something he did every day, and the clerk took his information with a friendly smile and gave him two keys. Since he'd started hanging out with Lawrence, he was much more aware that people tended to treat you the way you expected them to. Lawrence frequently acted as though he expected to be kicked, which made it more likely that he would be kicked. Stan had been trying to help him overcome this, and Lawrence was making progress, slowly.
He moved the car to a parking space, and they both got their bags out and went up to the room. It was a large, comfortable-looking room, dominated by a king-sized bed. One bed. Lawrence froze beside him.
Stan pried his friend's bag out of his hand, and set both bags down in front of the closet. Then he faced Lawrence and took both of the smaller boy's hands in his own. "This is your birthday present. I've spent a lot of time thinking about this, and I've concluded that I love you enough to take the next step in our relationship. So you get to teach me what boys do with boys."
For several seconds, Lawrence was completely incapable of speech. This should have felt like his heart's desire coming to life, but instead his mind was a whirl of thoughts along the lines of this can't be happening and it's too good to be true and wait, what happens if it doesn't work out? and I'm going to disappoint him. When he finally opened his mouth, what came out was a shaky, "A-are you sure?"
Stan squeezed his hands. "Yes, I'm sure," he said. Then he smiled wryly. "I'm not going to guarantee that there won't be any rough spots along the way, but this is something I want to do." He paused for a moment. "Or I should say, it's something I want to do with you." He tugged gently on their joined hands, and Lawrence let himself be pulled into an embrace. His rational self was slowly starting to catch up with his negatively-conditioned reflexes, and he leaned against Stan and sighed.
"I'm sorry -- I didn't mean to sound like I doubted you."
"It's okay," Stan said. "Maybe I shouldn't have sprung it on you like that -- but I couldn't think of any good way to bring it up in advance. We don't have to be in a big hurry; let's just cuddle on the bed for a while."
They both kicked off their shoes and climbed into the middle of the big bed. "This thing is huge," Lawrence said. "What do they think people are doing in here, having orgies?" He settled down in the curve of Stan's arm, his head resting comfortably on the other boy's shoulder. Stan stroked his hair, which always made him feel more relaxed and secure these days.
"I think it's mostly symbolic," Stan replied. "A huge bed is sort of a marker for luxury and status. I haven't looked at the rest of the room, but I'll bet there are more status markers too."
"Which brings me back to -- why are we here? Why a hotel? Why this hotel? Why Des Moines, for heaven's sake?"
"Well...," Stan said, "I wanted to go to a hotel so that we would be in a place that was comfortable for both of us. I wouldn't have been comfortable trying to do this in your house, even if your mother wasn't home. And I don't think you'd have been comfortable at my place, even though my parents would have been totally cool with taking the girls out for the day. Am I right?"
Lawrence thought about it for a moment, and then nodded. "I don't think I'd have been comfortable at my place either, and I certainly would have felt really weird about doing this at your house."
"Exactly. As to why this hotel -- because this is the kind of place you take someone special, to celebrate a special occasion. You deserve something nicer than a Motel 6."
Lawrence blushed, but it was a warm-fuzzy blush rather than an embarrassed one. "I still have trouble believing that you think I'm special."
"I do, because you are." Stan tilted his face up and kissed him very gently on the lips, and Lawrence's heart melted all over again. "And Des Moines... well, I wanted this trip to feel a little magical, and that's easier to do when it's not where you live every day."
Their cuddling slowly turned to stroking and petting. Lawrence felt Stan tugging at his T-shirt, and then the warmth of hands against his skin, sending tingles up and down his spine. Stan was wearing a button-front shirt, which gave Lawrence the chance to undo each button and then press a kiss onto the freshly-exposed skin. When he got to Stan's belt buckle, he hesitated.
"Go ahead," Stan said. "It's... kind of hot, having you undress me."
Lawrence unfastened the buckle, and then unbuttoned the pants and unzipped Stan's fly. And hesitated again. He could see Stan's erection inside his briefs; his own cock was fully hard and aching with desire. But he couldn't help feeling that once he actually touched Stan intimately, nothing would ever be the same between them again -- and it could either be in a good way or a bad one, and the thought of the bad one terrified him.
Some indication of those thoughts must have shown on his face. "Are you okay?" Stan asked.
"I... well... it's my turn to be confused, I guess. I want to do this so badly -- but what we've already got is nice, and I could live with that, and I don't want to mess it up, and maybe lose you as a friend, by this not going well. I'm just... scared."
"When I first started thinking about this, I had the same feeling. I still do, kind of. It's a risk, for both of us. I think it's a risk worth taking, but I don't want you feeling pressured." Stan levered himself up on one elbow. "Would you mind if I took your shirt off? I'd like to look at you."
"Okay," Lawrence said. Stan sat up and slid both hands under the T-shirt, lifting it up over his head and off his arms, and then he just looked at Lawrence for several minutes, studying his body as though there would be a test on it later. It was surprisingly erotic, and Lawrence found his hesitation evaporating rapidly. "Let's... get undressed all the way," he said. We'll have to sooner or later, anyhow." It was somehow less nervous-making to contemplate removing his own pants than to think about Stan undressing him.
He was surprised to see Stan remove his fetish and put it on the bedside table. "I don't want to risk hurting you by accident," Stan said in response to his questioning look. "I'm thinking about that story Fiddlesticks showed us. Without the fetish, I just have normal strength."
Once they were both naked, Lawrence couldn't help looking. Stan was beautiful -- so strong and fit, and perfectly proportioned. Even the scar on his stomach where Shiv's knife had gone in, completely healed now, looked like a design element on a piece of fine art. It still made Lawrence angry to think about that... he put that train of thought firmly out of his head. It had no place here.
Stan was looking too. "Do you like what you see?" Lawrence asked, teasing.
"Yes," Stan said emphatically. Then he blushed -- and the blush went all the way down into his chest as well as over his face. "I think... you're bigger than I am."
Lawrence hadn't even thought about that, oddly enough. He took a more analytical look. "No, I think we're actually about the same size. But your whole body is bigger than mine, so the proportions look different. See-" and he scooted closer to Stan to do a direct comparison, sexual thoughts temporarily overridden by mathematical ones.
"Ohhh...," Stan said as their bodies came into direct contact, and it jolted Lawrence out of his mathematical moment. When he looked up, Stan's lips were only inches from his own, and it was the most natural thing in the world to pull him down for a kiss.
Oh, my. They had kissed before, carefully at first while Stan got over a surge of unexpected reluctance, then gently and affectionately, with very little sexuality in it. Kissing while in full-body contact, skin to skin, was an entirely different thing. He felt Stan's arms tighten around him, and probed tentatively with his tongue, and Stan's lips opened under his own, and it felt as if all his muscles were turning to water. He sagged against Stan, trusting the larger boy's strength to hold him up while all his focus was on that kiss.
Stan lowered them both to the bed, face to face, still locked in the kiss. Lawrence could feel Stan's erect cock pressed against his own, and his hips thrust involuntarily once or twice before he got that response back under control. Waves of arousal were running in hot-and-cold flares along his nerves. And then Stan reached in between their bodies and wrapped his big hand around both of them at once and began to stroke.
That was it for any attempt Lawrence could muster at self-control. It took only a few strokes of Stan's hand before his body bucked and shuddered in orgasm, and then Stan's body shuddered along with him, their seed spurting and mingling where they pressed together.
Afterwards, Lawrence was too drained and limp to move. He could feel Stan's arms still wrapped around him, and he was content to just stay that way, safe and warm, in love and loved. If the world came to an end right now, he thought muzzily, it would be okay.
Some minutes later, Stan gently disengaged himself and went to the bathroom, coming back with a wet rag to clean them both off. Lawrence was still sprawled in the middle of the bed, his hair spread fanlike around him, looking more relaxed than Stan had ever seen him. "You look like a stoned angel," he said.
Lawrence's eyes flew open. "What?!"
Stan chuckled. "It's the hair," he explained. "It makes you look... sort of otherworldly. But you also look really blissed-out, and the combination is interesting."
"Angels," Lawrence snorted. "Don't be silly." Then he looked back at Stan, biting his lip. "That was... don't get me wrong, it was wonderful. But it really wasn't how I'd imagined this going. When I've imagined it."
"That's okay," Stan said. "It was obvious that we were both pretty keyed-up, and I thought maybe if we, um, took the edge off, we could try again later. I mean, we've got the room until tomorrow."
Lawrence thought about that for a moment, then smiled. "That's a really good idea," he said. "What would you like to do in the meantime?"
"What about checking out the pool?"
"Only if you'll braid my hair first," Lawrence said. "I brought the brush."
They settled into a now-familiar position, Stan sitting on the bed, Lawrence on the floor leaning against his knees. Stan's offhand comment about "braiding moonbeams" a while back had made Lawrence remember a story, which he'd hunted down in the library, about people who could actually do that -- although they mostly braided sunbeams. The story was one of a series, and Stan had read them all with a sense of wonder; he was beginning to understand what Lawrence got out of all those books he read.
Lawrence's hand, which was resting on Stan's bare ankle, squeezed affectionately, and he purred like a contented cat. It made Stan smile, as it always did. "You know, I've always wanted to ask you -- how in the world did you learn to purr like that?"
"Remember I told you about the cat we sort-of-had for a while? I thought of it as learning a second language."
Stan also remembered that the cat had been run over; this was not a set of memories he wanted Lawrence to revisit right now. Instead, he settled for, "Well, you can purr for me whenever you like. I think it's flattering."
Once Lawrence's hair was braided, they put on their trunks and headed down to the pool. Stan was a good swimmer and did laps around the deep end; Lawrence preferred to make himself light enough to float easily and simply lounged in the water, watching Stan. A few kids were splashing around in the shallow end under the eyes of their parents, but nobody paid any particular attention to a couple of young men minding their own business.
After a while the pool began to pall, so they went back up to the room. "If I don't shower off after swimming, the chlorine makes me itch," Stan said.
Lawrence grinned. "Showers can be fun."
"What did you have in mind?"
"Well, for one thing, it's much easier when you have someone to scrub your back," Lawrence said with an innocent expression that wouldn't have fooled anyone.
They went into the bathroom. "Geez, you could almost swim laps in this tub!" Lawrence said, stepping in. "And look how deep it is. What is it with all this oversized stuff, anyhow?"
"Like I said, status markers," Stan replied as he pulled the curtain closed. "Oh, and look -- this is a Jacuzzi."
"A whirlpool tub, like a smaller version of the hot tub down by the pool. That's why it's so deep; you can run a higher level of water in it than in a regular tub."
"That might be fun, too," Lawrence said. "But right now, let's just shower." He had been fiddling with the water temperature, and now he flipped the shower valve.
"Whoa! That's not warm at all!" Stan yelped.
"It's not cold -- it's just kind of lukewarm, instead of hot. But think about being under a waterfall in a mountain glade. Actually, that water would be cold, but you don't have to be perfectly accurate when it's a fantasy."
Showers could indeed be fun, Stan discovered, especially when you had someone in the shower with you who was absolutely determined to make sure that every inch of your body got scrubbed. Or rubbed. Or nibbled. Or whatever. Parts of his body that he had never thought of as particularly erotic -- such as the insides of his wrists and the backs of his knees -- turned out to be quite sensitive indeed as Lawrence played with them.
Then it was his turn to explore Lawrence's body with his hands and the soap and a rag. He enjoyed looking at the other boy, but it was taking some time for him to be fully relaxed about intimate touching, and this seemed to help. Lawrence was built like a dancer, lean and strong and elegant; he'd put on some muscle since the two of them had started working out together, but he would never be a strongman type. Sometimes Stan felt blocky and awkward next to him. It was fun to think about the two of them standing under a waterfall, though, and to find out what sort of touches made his friend gasp or moan.
And then Lawrence dropped to his knees and took Stan's erect cock into his mouth.
Stan froze. "Lawrence, stop."
Lawrence drew back instantly. A hurt look flickered over his features for just a second, before his face went completely blank. "You don't like it?" he asked, in an equally-expressionless voice.
Oh, no. He thinks I'm rejecting him. I have to fix this. "Stand up. Please." When he did, Stan pulled him into a hug. "It's not you, and it's not exactly that I don't like it -- it felt good. But... I never want you to be on your knees in front of me. That's just not right." Stan tilted Lawrence's chin up and kissed him, trying to put all the caring and affection he felt for the other boy into the gesture.
When the kiss finally broke, Lawrence was looking thoughtful rather than hurt or withdrawn. "So... do you see it as a dominance-and-submission thing?"
"Yes," Stan replied, relieved. "I didn't have the words, but that's exactly it. And I don't want to dominate you, even in a fantasy. That's not who you are. You're my friend - my partner - my equal."
"But if we were, say, on the bed, then it wouldn't be a problem?"
Stan blushed bright red again. "I think... that would be really nice."
The mood of the waterfall fantasy was now well and truly broken, so they shut the shower off and had some fun drying each other off with the hotel's big fluffy towels instead. Lawrence reached for the end of his braid to undo it, but Stan stopped him.
"Leave it braided for now. I'm curious about something." He squeezed the dripping braid to get as much water out of it as he could, then took the hair-dryer off the wall and used it until Lawrence's hair was only a little damp rather than soaking wet. His own much shorter hair didn't need anything but toweling off and a quick run-through with a comb, and then it could be left to air-dry.
Without warning, his stomach rumbled -- loudly. "Um... it has been a while since lunch," he said, slightly embarrassed.
"And you do have a higher metabolism to keep up," Lawrence replied. "Where would you like to go for dinner?"
"It's your birthday. What would you like?"
"I have no idea what's around here!"
"Well... why don't we see what the hotel restaurant has to offer? If we don't like that, then we can explore in the car."
They got dressed and went back downstairs to the restaurant. Lawrence flinched when he looked at the prices on the menu; Stan was more prepared for them, having eaten at hotels before. "This is still part of your birthday," he said. "Don't worry about the price."
Just then the waiter appeared with water glasses. "What would you like to drink, gentlemen?"
Stan ordered iced tea; Lawrence asked for a Coke. As the waiter left, Lawrence hissed, "I am not going to make you pay $28 for a steak! That's outrageous!"
"Hotel food is always expensive," Stan responded. "I'm going to have a burger platter -- you actually tend to get more food with one of those than with an entree anyhow."
"That's much more reasonable," Lawrence said, and when the waiter returned with their drinks they both ordered burger platters.
Once the waiter had left again, Lawrence seemed preoccupied. A couple of times he took a breath as though about to say something, then let it out again. Stan didn't like to push him in this mood, but finally he asked, "What's on your mind?"
"Well...," Lawrence hesitated, then seemed to come to a decision. "What you said in the shower. About me being your partner. Did you mean, like, as a team? Or did you mean it in the romantic sense?"
Now it was Stan's turn to hesitate. "I'm not actually sure," he said slowly. "What I started to say was that you were my friend and my equal -- but once I started talking, 'partner' just came out. Maybe... a little of both? We've worked together before, and it would be nice to have a teammate. About the other, I think it's a little soon to be thinking about anything long-term -- but I'm open to the possibility."
"We've been together for two years. That seems long-term to me already," Lawrence said.
"Well, yeah," Stan replied. "But when I said it's a little soon, I was thinking more about us both still being pretty young. People can change a lot during college."
Lawrence looked thoughtful. "I don't think this is going to change," he said. "But I understand your point."
Their food arrived, and the conversation turned to other things. Between normal teenage-boy metabolism and the demands of superpowers, they both had healthy appetites. As Lawrence was finishing off the last of his french fries, the waiter reappeared with a large slice of chocolate cake, topped by a lit candle, which he placed in front of Lawrence. "Happy birthday, sir," he said, "compliments of the management." Stan guessed that he had been close enough to hear the birthday remark earlier.
"Thank you," Stan said to the waiter. Then, to Lawrence, "Close your eyes and make a wish, and then blow the candle out." Lawrence looked at him with an intensity that made him suspect he knew what the wish would be, and did so.
"This is more than I'm going to be able to eat, after that burger. You have some too," Lawrence said, and they shared the cake between them. Stan signed for the meal to be added to their room tab, and they went back upstairs.
They settled back onto the bed, considerably less nervous now than they had been earlier, and began caressing each other again. The room darkened as the sun set, and the nearly-drawn drapes blocked most of the light from the parking lot, but Lawrence's luminous hair provided enough light to see by. It took them much less time than before to reach the point of shedding their clothing.
"Hey, your hair glows all over!" Stan exclaimed -- and felt Lawrence tense up beside him. Oops, he thought, I thought he'd stopped being self-conscious about that. "It's okay," he said hastily, "I was just surprised. I should have realized, but I guess I'd never thought about it before." No change. "Actually, I think it's cool," he continued. "It's sort of like... having my own private night sky." That made Lawrence relax a little, and gave Stan an idea. "There are even constellations," he said, and started playing connect-the-dots with a gentle finger, exerting his imagination to describe what he was "drawing" as he went. By the third one, Lawrence actually snorted with laughter.
Then he caught Stan's hand. "Hey, careful -- that tickles!"
"Let me try something else, then," Stan said, and began to retrace the lines he'd drawn, only using his tongue this time. Lawrence gasped and moved his head to one side, exposing his throat and shoulder. Stan took that as a hint, and nipped carefully at Lawrence's collarbone, which produced a moan.
After a few more minutes, when Lawrence seemed to be fully recovered and back in the moment, Stan paused. "You know, we've sort of been muddling along here with no real plan. It's your birthday. What do you want to do?"
Lawrence didn't quite freeze up this time, but he still had to stop and think about how to respond. What could he say that would actually express all the things he'd thought about, when he envisioned this encounter? Stan's warmth enveloping him... Stan's taut backside pressed against his stomach... Stan's rock-hard cock in his hand... Stan's voice calling out his name as he brought them both to climax... he finally settled on the one thing he could think of that seemed to cover all of that. "I want to make love to you."
And then realization hit, and he blurted out, "But we can't - I don't have-"
"I do," said Stan. "An Activity Scout is prepared, remember?" He rolled off the bed and pulled a smaller bag out of his duffel, handing it to Lawrence for examination. "I think there's everything in here that we might need."
Lawrence looked through the contents of the bag. "Condoms... lube... massage oil, that's a nice thought... um, butt plugs? Multiple?"
Stan blushed crimson again. "Hefty got them for me. He said that they might be useful, since neither of us have... um... you haven't, have you?"
"When would I have had the chance?" Lawrence said in some surprise. "Oh wait, you mean on my own, don't you? No, I haven't. That's not generally the way my fantasies go." He paused for a moment, considering. "And Hefty was right, those will be useful."
He put the collection of supplies aside. "There are some things we should talk about before we start this," he said. "Huh, listen to me, sounding like I know what I'm doing."
Stan smiled. "Well, somebody has to lead, and of the two of us you're better qualified."
Lawrence snorted. "Not that that's saying much."
"But it's true. And I trust you."
He trusts me. It was still a concept that surprised him, even as it made him feel warm inside. "First off, are you still sure you want to do it? Are you nervous? There are alternatives, if you're having second thoughts."
"Yes, I still want to," Stan replied firmly. "Nervous? Well, yeah -- I think that's only to be expected." After a moment's thoughtful pause, he continued, "I think mostly I'm worried about not doing it right and disappointing you. What about you? Are you nervous?"
Stan was worried about disappointing him? Lawrence almost laughed out loud, converting it to a brief huff at the last moment. "Yeah, I'm nervous too," he said. "Mostly about... what I said earlier. That I don't want to lose you as a friend by this not going right."
Stan reached out to take both of his hands. "That's not going to happen," he said. "We have a good solid foundation of friendship. The worst that can happen here is we find out we're not right for each other as lovers -- and if that should happen, I would still want to be your friend. I promise."
Lawrence was reassured; Stan took his promises very seriously. "Okay, next thing," he said. "If it does get to a point where you don't want to go any further, say so. We can do other things instead."
"Okay," Stan said. "I expect that there will be points where I'll feel hesitant -- but if it gets all the way to 'don't want to,' I'll tell you."
"Third item," Lawrence continued. "A lot of the preliminaries can be done with you lying on your stomach -- but when we get to, um, you know... the best way to do that is for you to kneel on the bed, and me to kneel behind you. Is that going to set off the dominance-and-submission thing?"
Stan considered this. "No," he said. "Because that's mutual. It's not... I don't have the words again."
"I get you," Lawrence replied. He hopped off the bed. "Okay then, let me get some towels and a rag from the bathroom. We don't want to get oil and stuff on the bedspread or the sheets."
Once the middle of the bed was well-covered in towels, the wet rag set out within reach, and Stan was stretched out on his stomach, Lawrence picked up the bottle of massage oil. "I think I'll start by giving you a body rub," he said. "That will let you get used to being touched in a more gradual way."
"Sounds good to me," Stan replied.
First, Lawrence leaned down and kissed his way across the top of Stan's back from one shoulder to the other, tasting his skin, just as he had spent hours thinking about doing. Then he squeezed out some oil and started working from the middle of Stan's back up toward his shoulders, pausing occasionally to kiss or nibble on the back of Stan's neck, or his shoulders, or his ears. He'd imagined this before, being able to run his hands all over Stan's strong, sexy body, feeling the skin and the play of muscles underneath it. He didn't use too much pressure; the books called it "the art of sensual massage", and it was about relaxing and arousing your partner rather than actually working on the muscles. He worked back down to Stan's waist and then onto his buttocks -- Stan tensed slightly, but only for a few moments before relaxing again -- and on to his thighs. "Spread your legs apart a bit," he said, and Stan did so. Now Lawrence could reach the sensitive skin on Stan's inner thighs. He ran his tongue gently up each leg from the inside of the knee to about mid-thigh. Stan gasped. "Good or bad?" Lawrence asked.
"Good, mostly," Stan said. "It almost tickles, but not quite."
"Okay, then, I'm going to go further with that." Lawrence continued kissing and licking toward the tops of Stan's thighs. Stan's breathing rate had increased, and he was making little involuntary twitches and occasional small noises of pleasure, and every one of them seemed to go straight to Lawrence's groin.
When he reached the point where Stan's buttocks curved into his thighs, Lawrence drew back. He dribbled a little more oil onto his finger and began to stroke those soft curves, slipping down the edges of his cleft to tease at the sensitive strip of skin just behind Stan's balls.
Stan's twitch this time was clearly unease rather than arousal, and he twisted around to look at Lawrence. "Um... are you sure you want to...?"
"Relax," Lawrence said. "We just had a shower, remember? And anyhow, this is just to get you ready. The next step is what the plugs are for." Stan settled back again, and Lawrence continued stroking carefully, playing with the back of Stan's scrotum and then moving up again toward that puckered entrance, spreading the oil gently around the edges.
"Ohhh..." Stan moaned outright.
"Does that feel good? Do you want more?" Lawrence asked.
"Yes. And yes," Stan said.
Lawrence pulled out the smallest of the butt plugs and coated it thoroughly with lube. Then he ran the tip around the edge of Stan's anus the same way he'd been using his fingertip, before starting to press it in. He took his time about it, easing the plug in and out, a little further each time, until it was completely inserted. "Is that okay?" he asked.
"Yes..." Stan sounded a bit uncertain. "It feels kind of weird."
"Good or bad?"
"Not bad. Just weird."
"Okay, then just relax as much as you can, and we'll leave it there for a few minutes. The idea is to get that muscle to stretch out a little at a time." Lawrence went back to running his hands over Stan's body again. He moved up and leaned over to nip at the other boy's ear. "You look so hot laid out on the bed for me," he said. "What else would you like me to do?"
"I... liked it when you were... playing with my chest, in the shower," Stan said, and Lawrence felt his cock give an involuntary twitch at the passion heating his friend's voice.
"Roll onto your side," he said. When Stan did so, he ran his hand -- still slippery with a residue of oil -- down the center of Stan's chest, onto his stomach, stopping just short of his cock. Then he leaned in and brushed his beard across Stan's nipple. Stan gasped.
Lawrence kissed his way in a circle around that nipple, then flicked it with his tongue, and Stan moaned again. Lawrence drew back with a wicked smile. "Time to move up to the next plug, I think. Lie back down." The look Stan gave him was indescribable, but he did so.
Lawrence got out the second plug and lubed it up. He eased the first one out, tossed it out of the way, and repeated the slow-and-careful insertion process. "Still okay?"
"Yes," Stan said. "It feels... less weird than the first one did."
"You're getting used to it. You're also more aroused. And speaking of more aroused -- roll up on your side again." This time Lawrence fastened his mouth onto Stan's nipple, feeling it harden against his tongue. He sucked on it, played with it, used his tongue to press it lightly into his front teeth; his fingers found the other nipple and rolled and rubbed it as well, and Stan moaned and squirmed. He reached out to grasp Stan's firm butt-cheek with his free hand, and squeezed.
"Please..." it was halfway between a moan and a gasp.
"Are you ready?" Lawrence asked. "Do you want to take me inside you?"
"Okay, get up on your hands and knees." Lawrence pulled out a condom, opened the package, and put it on. When he'd practiced this at home, he was usually slightly deflated by the time he got it settled, and it took a minute or so to get back to being fully erect. This time, that wasn't going to be a problem. The condom was lubricated, but he took a moment to add a little extra lube around the tip.
He knelt behind Stan. "Spread your legs open a little more," he said. "I need to get in between them." Despite the difference in their heights, Stan's entrance was presented at a convenient level. Lawrence eased the second butt-plug out, tossed it next to the first one, and pressed the tip of his cock into Stan. "Here we go," he said. "This is going to go further in than the plugs did. Remember, if you can't deal with it, say so and we'll stop."
He rocked slowly back and forth, using his grip on Stan's hips to push himself in a little further every time. It felt amazing. It looked amazing. For a moment he nearly lost control and just shoved himself all the way in, but mastered the impulse in time. As he sank in deeper, he let go of Stan's hip with his right hand and reached around to grasp his cock instead. Then he was all the way inside, feeling Stan's backside pressed against him just as he had imagined. "Still good?" he asked.
"Better than good," came the reply. "I had no idea." Stan's voice was raw with desire. "I want you."
"I want you so much," Lawrence said, his voice equally rough. "I've been fantasizing about this for literally years."
"So how does the reality match up?"
"Better." Lawrence began to thrust, slowly at first, trying to sync his hip motions with strokes of his hand on Stan's cock. His rhythm increased involuntarily, and he leaned back a bit to get deeper penetration.
"Oh!" Stan cried out, followed quickly by, "Whatever you just did, it felt really good."
"Well, then... I'll keep... doing it." Lawrence was finding it hard to detach enough attention to enable speech. He kept his body at that angle, thrusting and stroking and entirely focused on feeling Stan's ever-closer approach to orgasm. When it finally happened, Lawrence exploded with pleasure as well; he was barely conscious of anything but their two bodies writhing and thrusting as one.
Stan felt Lawrence slump onto his back, and guessed that he was out of it again. Looks like it's up to me to get us settled, he thought, and eased his body forward and down onto the bed, with Lawrence clinging like a sleepy monkey. Once they were stretched out, Stan just relaxed, enjoying the feel of Lawrence's weight pressed against him. That was as much moving as he wanted to do for a while.
Eventually the pleasant lassitude of his body wore off enough to notice things like the dampness of the towel under his stomach, and that Lawrence had slipped back out of him as his erection deflated. He rolled slightly to settle Lawrence onto the mattress, eased himself away and sat up, reaching for the rag to clean himself off. Then he removed the condom -- Lawrence barely twitched during the process -- and took it into the bathroom for disposal. He looked thoughtfully at the tub, flipped the stopper, and started it filling with hot water. Returning to the bedroom, he collected the butt plugs and went back to scrub them off in the sink.
When the tub was full enough, he donned his fetish -- he could probably do this on his own, but enhanced strength would make it much easier -- and picked Lawrence up off the bed. "Come on, sleepyhead," he said cheerfully. "We don't really need another shower, but we'll feel better in the morning if we at least rinse off a bit." He carried the other boy into the bathroom. "Fair warning -- the water is going to feel pretty hot."
Stan sank down cross-legged into the water because that kept him balanced. When Lawrence's skin touched the water, he came abruptly out of his blissful drowse. "Yow, that is hot!"
"You'll be used to it in a minute," Stan said. "Remember I said this was a whirlpool tub?" He unfolded his legs and settled Lawrence between them, then pressed the jet control, and the hot water fizzed and bubbled around both of them. "It's a good way to relax -- not that you need much encouragement for that!" More seriously, "Do you always... conk out like that afterwards?"
"Not always so much. It depends a lot on how intense the experience is. That was... really intense."
"I'll take that as a compliment." Stan paused, then continued, "It was pretty intense for me too. I've never been entirely sure what people meant by 'afterglow', but I think I know now."
They relaxed into the heat. Stan brought a few handfuls of water up to cascade down Lawrence's chest, and caressed his face and throat with a wet hand. Lawrence leaned back against him, apparently drifting off again, his hands resting on Stan's thighs, and Stan felt a sudden surge of protectiveness. He thought about their dinner conversation again. Antimatter was certainly more than capable of pulling his own weight in a fight -- and getting better with practice -- and it would be good to have someone watching his back. But Lawrence, snuggled drowsy and vulnerable and trusting on his chest... he knew now how hard it was for Lawrence to trust like that, and it made his heart ache. Not that Lawrence wasn't strong too -- he'd had to be, and knowing why made Stan both sad and angry, as well as determined never to let his friend down. Anyone who ever wants to hurt Lawrence again is going to have to come through me first.
Eventually Stan reached out and shut off the jets. "It's not the best idea to stay in really hot water for a long time," he said. "Woops! All the towels are out there." He scooped Lawrence up again and dripped across the floor to the bed. The towels on the edges were unstained and still good for drying off with; he turned back one side of the bed and tucked Lawrence into it as if the smaller boy were one of his sisters. He collected the towels and returned them to the bathroom, then climbed into bed next to Lawrence, wrapping himself around his friend's back with an arm over his waist.
"Best. Birthday. Ever." A pause. "I love you."
"I love you too." He dropped a kiss onto Lawrence's shoulder. "Sleep well."