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"All or Nothing - Part 4"
Title: All or Nothing P4
Micky opened his eyes and looked out the window. The night was clear and the soft blue light from the full moon streamed in. The breeze was just as cool as it had been earlier, but he was comfortable under the covers with Mike. He had been lying there for what seemed like hours; his body tired, but his mind too active to allow him to sleep. He sighed and eased himself out of bed, doing his best not to wake Mike in the process. He pulled on a pair of pants and a shirt and descended into the kitchen, his bare feet cold from the metal of the spiral staircase. Glancing back toward Davy’s and Peter’s bedroom every few steps, he crept through the dark living room toward the deck.
He went outside and sat on the wooden bench that surrounded the tree, leaning back against the trunk and propping his feet up on the railing. He laced his fingers in his lap and closed his eyes, taking in the sounds and smells of the night. Waves rolled gently up onto the beach with an endless and soothing rhythm, and the scent of a distant bonfire wafted on the crisp breeze that blew his curls into his face. He brushed the hair away and wondered solemnly how the night could be so peaceful when everything else in his world was in such chaos.
Mike was right about one thing; in a very short time people were going to know about them, whether they wanted them to or not. He was also right in his assessment that they didn’t have many options for dealing with the situation. Anybody that Barbara would talk to already knew of her relationship with Mike, and of the bad breakup – or rather, breakups – they’d had. They might simply think that she was a jilted lover and was doing anything she could to get even with him. But the seed would be planted; people would always wonder, at least subconsciously, if there was any truth to her accusations. The suggestion alone would be enough to cause them trouble, and denying it would probably only make it worse.
Then there was the course that Mike wanted to take; telling everyone the truth and thereby taking away Barbara’s control over the situation. This was the action that Micky disliked the most. After all, what was between him and Mike was between him and Mike; it wasn’t anybody else’s business. But more than that, there was the stigma and downright illegality of being a homosexual. True, it wasn’t a commonly prosecuted crime, but the possibility was there; and in any case, Micky wasn’t especially fond of having that label dogging him for the rest of his life.
There was one other way to deal with the problem; a way that a few days ago had scared Micky to death, but was now beginning to look almost appealing. If the draft board wanted him, they could have him. It was an oddly logical option. Given the choice of staying and being seen as a fag or going and being seen as a normal red-blooded American male, the latter was infinitely preferable. Of course, he could very well be killed if he went to Vietnam, but that would certainly quell anybody’s suspicions about his manliness, wouldn’t it?
How would he be able to tell Mike that he was considering this option? Would he understand? No. He’d throw a fit and say, ‘Why don’t you just go to Canada, Mick? It’s better than getting yourself killed.’ But to Micky, going into exile was almost worse than going to Vietnam. He couldn’t stand the thought of being alone, and the fact that he’d never be able to come home again would drive him crazy in no time. At least there was a chance that he’d come home from the war.
Sure, Mike would be angry when he told him, but there wasn’t much he could do about that. Micky shuddered slightly, recalling the way Mike had looked earlier that evening. He wasn’t afraid of him, but he certainly wasn’t looking forward to being on the receiving end of one of his tirades, either.
He smelled a trace of cologne on the swirling breeze and opened his eyes to find Mike standing a few feet from him. His hair was messy, his eyes were sleepy, and he was dressed in only a pair of jeans and an old t-shirt. This image was in such contrast to the image Micky had just had in his mind that it was hard to think that they were of the same man.
“Sorry,” Mike said. “Didn’t mean to bug you.”
“You aren’t,” he said as he looked back toward the ocean. “I just couldn’t sleep.”
Mike stood there for a moment, not wanting to intrude on Micky’s solitude. “You wanna be alone?” he finally asked.
He shook his head and slid over a little on the bench. When Mike sat down and looked at him, regret and concern reflected in his eyes, Micky felt a twinge in his gut. Once he told him what he was planning to do, he was sure that Mike would never look at him that way again. The breeze blew his hair into his face once more and before he could brush it back, Mike did it for him. Mike’s hand was still on his cheek when Micky leaned in and kissed him. He wasn’t sure whether it was a physical or emotional reaction; all he knew was that he needed and wanted him at that moment.
Mike was pleasantly surprised by the action. He hadn’t expected Micky to be so bold as to kiss him in plain sight like this. Well, it wasn’t exactly in plain sight – the beach was deserted and they probably couldn’t have been seen from the house because of the tree – but he knew it was a big step for Micky anyway. They parted, and Mike looked at him, wanting to haul him upstairs and have sex with him, but Micky would never go for that as long as Davy and Peter were home.
“Why don’t we go for a walk?” he suggested.
Micky chuckled slightly, knowing full well what Mike had in mind. Last night, he probably would have declined the invitation, but this was likely the last time he and Mike would be together before Micky told him of his decision, and he wanted to make the most of it. They stood up and Micky shivered as another breeze blew in from the ocean.
Mike grabbed the throw blanket from the hammock. “It is a little chilly, isn’t it?” he said, a smile playing on his lips.
Micky nodded. “Where do you want to go?”
“Nobody on the beach this time of night,” he replied, already heading toward the stairs.
Micky glanced back into the house one last time before following Mike down to the beach. When he got there, Mike was waiting for him. He looked incredible, bathed in moonlight and his hair being blown wild by the wind. When Micky reached him, Mike put his arms around him and kissed him passionately. Micky closed his eyes and returned the kiss, tasting a hint of the mint toothpaste Mike had used before going to bed.
Mike felt his cock starting to awaken as he placed his hands on Micky’s ass and pulled him close. God, he was lucky to have this man as his. Maybe one day he’d be able to actually tell him that. For now, he’d just have to show him. He looked at him through half-closed eyes.
“We don’t really have to go anywhere,” he said, nodding to the side.
Micky looked toward the area that Mike was indicating. Bordered on one side by the stairs, on another side by the hill upon which the house rested, and above by the deck, it provided relative seclusion when people wanted to engage in certain activities. It had been used on several occasions by party guests of theirs, as well as by each of them at one time or another. Micky nodded and went with him into the space.
Mike peered into the darkness, his eyes trying to adjust to the slivers of moonlight that filtered into the area. Finally, he saw what he was looking for. Atop an old wooden barrel stood a few large candles and a box of wooden matches which someone – he didn’t know who – had had the foresight to place there. He lit the candles and spread the throw blanket on the sand next to the barrel; then peeled off his t-shirt and jeans, revealing his semi-rigid cock.
Once again, Micky was taken by Mike’s appearance and felt his own cock coming to life. He quickly removed his clothing, pleased by the look of admiration that Mike gave him as he did. They knelt on the blanket facing each other, and Micky placed his hands lightly on Mike’s shoulders. They kissed, and he felt Mike’s hands on his hips and then running lazily over his ass. Micky brought his own hands up and caressed Mike’s cheeks before tangling his fingers in his thick hair.
Mike worked his way from Micky’s mouth to his neck and finally to his chest, showering him with warm, tender kisses. He was horny, but didn’t feel the physical need to fuck him; he could take the time to make love to him instead. He continued to kiss him, eliciting sighs of pleasure every time he moved to a new place. After a moment of concentration on the area around his nipples, he came back up and kissed Micky softly on the mouth.
Micky closed his eyes and tried not to think of how it would never be like this again; of how he and Mike would never be able to share intimacy exactly like this after tonight. Instead, he basked in the moment and savored the taste and the scent of this man who had, for better or worse, changed his life. He opened up all of his senses, needing to create an indelible impression of this night in his mind.
Mike looked at him, wondering why he had suddenly become so sullen. “What’s wrong?” he whispered.
He looked down, wishing that he had a better poker face. “Nothing,” he answered lamely as he lay on the blanket and pulled Mike down to kiss him again.
Mike gladly obliged, kissing him more urgently this time; wanting to drive away whatever negative thoughts were in his head. When he lay down next to him, his cock touched Micky’s leg, and he couldn’t help but moan slightly at the contact. He teased Micky’s nipples with his fingertips, sending shivers through him before descending past his belly to his swollen member.
Micky raised his ass, pushing his throbbing cock into his waiting hand. He groaned when Mike wrapped his fingers around it and began stroking ever so slowly; almost painfully slowly. More confident in himself now, and wanting to give him as much pleasure as he was able, Micky reached for Mike’s cock and began stroking him with the same rhythm.
Mike lifted his head and they looked at each other, not speaking and not needing to. He would have liked to get inside that beautiful ass again, but there was no baby oil handy and he knew that Micky wasn’t ready to go it alone yet. There was no need to rush things anyway; they had all the time in the world. The feeling of Micky’s hand on his cock was exquisite, and he was happy that Micky was taking an active part in their lovemaking. There were so many things he could teach him, so many things they could share together; and for the first time in a long time, Mike looked forward to the future.
Almost as if joining them in their activity, a breeze blew briskly into the space. Neither of them seemed to notice it, however, as they began jerking harder and faster at each other’s cocks. They kissed one last time and raced furiously to their climaxes, each crying into the other’s mouth as he came.
Mike stayed close to Micky after their orgasms subsided, kissing him on the neck and lightly caressing his chest. Once again, he wanted to say the words that he’d never been able to say to anyone, but somehow it didn’t seem like the right time.
“It’ll be alright, Mick,” he said instead, vaguely addressing the problem that he knew had caused Micky’s inability to sleep that night. “We’ll get through it.”
Micky responded only with a guilty nod. Maybe he and Mike could go to Canada together?
* * *
Mike poured himself a cup of coffee as he waited for his toast. Davy was quiet and pretending to read the newspaper, but Mike knew that he was looking at him. He turned to face him, and he quickly buried his nose in the paper again.
“What’s going on?” Mike asked as he gingerly pulled the bread from the toaster and tossed it onto a plate.
Davy cleared his throat. “I, ah, ran into Barbara last night,” he answered uneasily.
Mike stopped buttering his toast for a second. “Lucky you,” he said, trying to sound nonchalant.
“She was at the Vincent Van Gogh Gogh,” he continued.
He pulled up a chair and sat at the table. “Stalking new prey?” he asked, playing dumb.
“Not exactly.” Davy wasn’t looking at him. “She was, ah, saying some stuff that, well…”
“What, Davy?” Mike asked impatiently.
“It’s embarrassing to repeat, man.” He shifted in his chair. “She was talking to anybody who would listen, saying – now, don’t kill the messenger – saying that you’re… queer.” He looked at Mike, prepared to duck should something be thrown across the table.
Mike sighed. “That didn’t take long.”
“What?” Davy asked, confused.
“Oh, she came over here last night while you guys were out,” he explained. “You know, one more try…? Anyway, she got pissed when I told her to go away, and she said she was gonna do something to make my life hell.”
Davy nodded. “Yeah, well, it’s not just your life she’s making hell.”
“What do you mean?” Mike asked, again feigning ignorance.
“Part Two,” he said, looking sheepishly at him. “She said that you don’t want her back because…”
Mike closed his eyes for a second. “Let me guess. It had something to do with Micky.”
“How did you know?”
“I know how that bitch’s mind works,” he said, hoping it was a convincing lie. “Mick was here when she came over.”
“But why bring him into it?” Davy asked.
Mike got up and tossed his untouched breakfast into the sink, becoming genuinely angry again over the situation. “Because it’s not enough for her to fuck with me; she’s gotta fuck with my friends, too.” He took a deep breath and turned back to Davy. “So, did anybody believe her?” he fished.
“Are you kidding? Who’s gonna believe a thing like that about you guys?”
“I don’t know,” Mike tried to dismiss it.
“Well, I wouldn’t worry about it,” Davy said. “After she left, everybody was just rolling their eyes and wondering what the hell you ever saw in her to begin with.”
Mike shook his head. “I wonder that myself. Look, do me a favor and don’t mention this to Mick,” he said. “I’ll tell him about it later.”
“No problem,” Davy said.
“Where is he, anyway?” he asked.
Davy shrugged. “He and Peter went somewhere a while ago.”
* * *
Micky drummed his fingers on the car door, lost in thought. He had heard that getting into Canada wasn’t as easy as it sounded, but having it confirmed by Peter’s friend of a friend made it harder to accept somehow. If he had gone to see the guy a month ago… if he was still a student… if he had friends or family there who could have vouched for him… if he married a Canadian girl...
He shook his head slightly to clear it. No, going to Canada was not an option now. Still, if he hadn’t explored the possibility, he would have regretted it for the rest of his life – however long that was going to be now.
“I’m sorry he couldn’t help you, Micky,” Peter said, breaking the silence they’d shared since they left the man’s dank makeshift office.
“It’s okay, Pete,” he replied halfheartedly. “I don’t think I would’ve been able to handle being cut off from everyone, anyway.”
“I know, man, but at least you’d be…” He trailed off, quickly looking for an alternative to what he was about to say. “…safe,” he finished.
Micky sighed and looked out his window. If he was going to tell Peter what was happening with him and Mike, now would be the time. Hell, if anybody would understand, it would be Peter. He had friends in all kinds of places who were living all kinds of lives. Surely, he wouldn’t judge him. Micky glanced back at him and opened his mouth to speak, but his courage left him. He didn’t get another chance to say anything before they pulled into the driveway. He got out of the car and headed straight into the house and upstairs, acknowledging neither Mike nor Davy.
Mike followed him, walking into the bedroom to find him digging around in the closet and mumbling to himself. He closed the door loudly enough to let him know that he was there, causing him to emerge from the closet empty-handed and looking somewhat guilty. Mike didn’t possess the greatest sense of intuition in the world, but he knew that something wasn’t quite right.
“What are you looking for?” he asked casually.
Micky didn’t respond, but instead went to his dresser and started rummaging in one of the drawers.
“I, ah, talked to Davy this morning,” Mike said as he crossed the room and sat on his bed. “He said that Barbara was at the Vincent last night.”
Micky paused. “Before or after she was here?” he asked without looking at him.
“After. He said nobody believed her, though,” he said, answering his unspoken question.
“Maybe not,” Micky said as he turned around, “but you know they’re talking about it. ‘Did you hear what Barbara said about Mike and Micky?’ I can just hear it.”
“So what if they are?”
“How many times do we have to go over this?” he said, frustrated. “I don’t want everybody to know what’s going on.”
“You act like you’re ashamed,” Mike said, standing up. “Are you?”
Micky turned away from him again. It was going to be hard enough telling Mike that he was leaving; he didn’t want to get into his feelings about their relationship. “Not exactly,” he finally said.
Mike grabbed his arm and turned him back to face him. “Then what, exactly?”
“I don’t know,” he said, wriggling out of Mike’s grip. “It’s nobody else’s business. Can’t we just leave it at that?”
“No, we can’t. This whole coy routine is really starting to get on my nerves, Mick.” He placed his hands on his hips. “What is it that you’re so scared of, anyway?”
“I’m not scared.”
“Bullshit. You won’t even admit it to the guys,” he said, gesturing toward the door.
“And what if we did admit it? What then?” he demanded. “Even if they were okay with it, how many gigs do you think we’d get if everybody knew there are two fags in the group? Do you think we’d ever get a record deal?”
Mike rolled his eyes. “Gimme a break. Liberace’s not hurting, is he? You’re gonna have to come up with a better reason than that.”
“Alright, what about our families?”
He snorted. “I don’t give a rat’s ass what my family thinks of me.”
“Well, I do,” Micky said. “My mother’s married to a clergyman, Mike. Do you think I’d ever be able to go home again?”
“Come on. How long did your mother live in Hollywood with your father? She’s probably seen it all. Face it, Mick, you’re the only one who’s got a problem with this; although you sure didn’t last night.” He stopped when Micky looked at him. The remark may have been uncalled for, but it was the truth.
“I don’t want to talk about it any more,” Micky said, walking back to the closet.
“It won’t go away if you ignore it.”
“Then I’ll go away,” he replied as he grabbed an old suitcase. “I need to go see my family anyway.”
“To say goodbye.”
Something stirred in the pit of Mike’s stomach; the same something he had felt when he saw Micky’s draft notice. “What the hell are you talking about?”
“I’ve been drafted, remember?” he answered shortly as he placed the case on his bed and opened it.
“You’ve been drafted, but you’re not going anywhere. You know as well as I do that they won’t want you in the service after you’ve told them—” He stopped, suddenly realizing just what Micky was planning.
Micky began pulling items from his dresser and tossing them into the suitcase. “Can we talk about this when I get back?”
“No, we’ll talk about it now,” Mike said, again grabbing Micky’s arm. “If you’re going to sentence yourself to death, I want to know why.”
“I don’t owe you any explanations,” he said as he jerked his arm away.
“Like hell you don’t.” Mike reached over and closed the suitcase.
“Lay off,” Micky said, opening the case again. “It’s my life.”
“And you’re willing to risk it just to preserve your reputation? That’s the stupidest fucking thing I’ve ever heard of!”
Micky looked quickly toward the door and then back to Mike. “Will you quiet down? They’re gonna hear you downstairs.”
“Good,” he said, walking to the door. “Hey guys,” he called as he opened it, “guess what? Mick and I are—”
“You fucking bastard!” Micky bounded over and shut the door. Mike looked surprised; but not as surprised as he did when, in a burst of anger-fueled energy, Micky grabbed him by the shirt and slammed him against the wall.
The next thing Mike knew, Micky had hit him square in the jaw. He was never one to back away from a fight, even if it was with Micky; besides, he had some frustrations of his own to vent. “How can you leave after last night?” he asked, backhanding him. “What the hell am I supposed to do once you’re gone?” He punched him in the stomach. “You didn’t think about that, did you?”
Before Micky could answer and before they could throw any more punches at each other, Davy and Peter burst into the room and tried to restrain them.
“Mike, are you crazy?” Davy yelled as he did his best to hold him back. “What the hell are you doing?”
“Trying to knock some sense into this stupid fucker!” he shouted, sidestepping Davy and going after Micky.
Micky’s back was now literally against the wall, and he could see that Mike was about to hit him again. A rush of adrenaline seized him and, despite Peter’s hold on him, he moved out of the way just as Mike’s fist came toward his head.
Mike didn’t think it was possible for anyone to move that fast, but he didn’t have time to reflect on it. All he knew was that he had hit something solid. He couldn’t remember how many bones were in the human hand, but it felt as if he’d broken every one of them. He could feel himself going pale as waves of pain began to radiate from his hand.
“Jesus, Mike!” Peter shouted as he and Davy went to his side and tried to get a look at the misshapen appendage.
Mike pulled his hand away before either of them could touch it and looked straight at Micky. “Go and see your family, Mick – and then go straight to hell.”
He stormed out of the room, cradling his hand as he went downstairs. He didn’t know exactly where he was going; he just needed to get away from Micky. He stopped when he reached the kitchen, only then getting a good look at his hand. The fingers weren’t all pointed in the same direction anymore, and it was already bruised and swollen. The sight alone was enough to make him queasy, but when he thought of the implications of having broken his right hand, his stomach started doing flip flops.
“Peter, get some ice,” Davy said as they came quickly down the stairs. “We’ve gotta get him to the hospital.”
Peter quickly wrapped a tray’s worth of ice cubes in a clean dish towel. “Okay, let’s go,” he said as he handed it to Mike.
Mike held the ice carefully against his hand as the two of them led him from the house. When he got to the door he stopped and glanced up at Micky, who was standing on the balcony looking miserable. The image mixed with the stew of emotions that Mike was already feeling, making the whole experience worse than it already was. Even if Micky was feeling badly, it wasn’t enough to make Mike forget his anger; and he walked out of the house not really caring if he ever saw him again.