[Home | Quicksearch | Search Engine | Random Story | Upload Story]

My very first attempt at the subject matter; I'd love feedback on this.

Cover Me

by GhaniHwi

Love. What a simple word. If you were to approach someone who had never heard English before and say the word "love", they would have no idea what it meant. It is a random jumble of letters and sounds that only mean something to those of us who speak the English vernacular, but when said in just such a way, at just such a time, have the power to raze whole cities. It also has the power to heal, to comfort, to aid- but it is used more often as a weapon than a remedy. Love. What a fucking simple word.

He could feel his presence acutely, as though someone had opened a door to the outside and a warm breeze had slipped in, wrapping all around him. It felt so comfortable, so much like coming home. Knowing he was near without seeing or smelling or hearing him felt so basic, so instinctive. It pulled from somewhere deep, someplace so mired within his heart he dared not even seek its source, but allowed it to carry him thoughtlessly. Like flipping on a light, his whole body awoke, alive. Silent chills tripped down the length of his spine as the smell of soap lazily announced what he already knew. Chris always liked to take his showers late in the afternoon, just before they were locked down at 5 o'clock.

Not for the first time did he wonder what did all of this mean? When he had married Genevieve, they had loved and made love frequently, passionately. Chris was so very different. It was not that Chris was male- Toby did not dwell on thoughts of his sexuality- distinctions of homosexual or bisexual seemed so laughably small in a place like Oz. Wanting to fuck and falling in love could hardly be said to be the same thing, even if they were not mutually exclusive. Many of the inmates who hated homosexuals still wanted to fuck. No, it was something else. Something beyond his understanding or rationalization that stood maddeningly beyond his reach. The nearest, most inadequate word he could put to it was love.

Lights out was still an hour away. One long, excruciating hour to wait. Toby felt his body respond to Chris' presence, the deep reaching upward, outward, toward what it wanted. He pushed the thoughts away as best he could, but the lingering smell of soap and the musty warmth of Chris' shower hung heavy inside the pod. His groin tightened uncomfortably. He wanted Chris, but it was something more than that- more than the wanting to feel him, to taste him. What was the perfect word? How to describe this feeling, this horrible, hollow aching? He coveted Chris, that was it. He wanted to draw Chris inside of him, to share him with no one and nothing else. He had awakened within him something both passionate and equally primal that could be neither controlled nor appeased. Its thirst could not be slaked, and no matter how often he fucked or was fucked. The desire only grew deeper and broader- an abyss into which he helplessly, willingly plunged.

Chris had left his shirt off as he brushed his teeth. The muscles in his back rolled slowly back and forth beneath the skin, like the tide drawing into the shore and back out to sea. He knew Toby was watching, he knew his mind. A smile touched the edge of his lips and Toby turned to face the wall. One hour.

The low, droning buzz and then darkness, silence. Pale blue light from the CO's station filtered in, casting broken beams of light across the floor. Patience. The hacks would make their initial rounds to check the beds, to check their charges before nursing coffees all night at the control desk. His heart beat like a trip hammer as he lay motionless. No word, no sound from Chris' bed beneath him. The flashlight skipped over his body, moved downward to check the bed below, and then was gone. For one moment he wondered with no small sense of derisive scorn at how little the hacks truly saw with their flashlights- how powerless and weak were those weapons they so desperately cleaved to and used to seek and destroy the desires of men. What were flashlights and threats and beatings when in this darkness he could touch and feel and love, if only for a moment? How diligent they fought that battle long since lost. Chris shifted on the bed beneath him and brought his thoughts back. Suddenly there was only now and everything else- all of the fear, the anger, the COs, the gray walls of Oz, the past, all melted away.

If the floor was warm or cold, he did not notice. Chris was propped upright in bed, his hands clasped over his chest. They rose and fell slowly, rose and fell, rose and fell. Toby's eyes focused on their steady rhythm, falling into a sort of trance. There was so much peace there, so much quiet, his mind focused on that and for a bare moment, the walls of Oz were not a prison, and he was not alone.

Chris sat upright slowly, his own eyes watching Toby and glinting in the scant light. Toby felt the blood rush, felt the erection slowly gather and beat with the pulse of his heart. Pulse. Pulse. Pulse. Chris' eyes flickered down and then returned to Toby's, the grin turning up the corners of his mouth again. Quickly, he pushed himself off his bed and moved to where he was standing. He stopped just shy of Toby, almost seeming to wait for some unspoken cue, for Toby`s permission to touch. He was so close Toby could feel the heat of his skin, could smell the faint mint from his toothpaste, and yet that space, those few inches that separated their bodies, held so much. All of the things left unsaid, all of those things that would never be spoken between them filled that emptiness and left them so distant from each other Toby felt his chest constrict. In a bare moment, no more time than a heartbeat, everything poured out between them, everything and nothing.

I will never, never love anyone as I love you.

I am death, I ride a pale horse.

I don't care.

I will destroy you, I will break you.

I need you.

I want you.

I cannot live without you.

I cannot tell you the truth.

I love you.

I love you, too.

Desperate not to face the silence, needing Chris' warmth more than those words, he closed the space.

Hours later Toby's eyes slowly drifted open. Chris was still pressed against him, breathing slowly, steadily. His back felt warm and...right, somehow, against Toby's chest. They would lay this way, Toby pressed against Chris' back, his head buried in the nape of Chris' neck, until the COs noticed, and then reluctantly, Toby would be obliged to return to his own bunk. But for now, right now, in this moment, there was nothing but his body, the smell of Chris' skin, the curve of Chris' hip over which his arm rested, the slow, sleepy beating of his heart.

Nighttime in Oz bred disquiet. Ever since he had been shipped off to this concrete island, Toby had realized that though he knew the real world existed beyond the walls, within them there was no peace, no semblance of normality. He had not slept a full night since coming here, and had long since given up the hope that he ever would. Sharing a pod with Vern Schillinger had kept him awake nearly every night, but even when Vern had been too bored to fuck him, he had found no respite from his dreams. He could not remember the last time he had not woken up to the sound of his own screaming, his shirt soaked through with sweat, his body shaking like a drug addict in detox. A judge and jury could strip you of your pride, rights, dignity and throw you into a cage, but the mind was the real prison, it was the true executioner.

Wondering about what could have been, what should have been always drove Toby crazy. The thoughts would burrow, feed, thicken his mind with doubts, taint his waking life with fear; sometimes he felt so small, so fucking small and overwhelmed. It was so easy to feel helpless in Oz- the weak were consumed without remorse while the COs turned a blind eye. What was the death of one more criminal to them? Not for the first time, he wondered if Genevieve and he would have had a happy life, if he had gotten help with his alcohol problem, if he had tried.

But you didn't. You are here now. Stop it. Stop it. Stop it!

Everything was upside down, now. Everything was so fucked.

Chris shifted and turned over, coming face to face with Toby.

"Your thinking is keeping me up."

"Sorry, I didn't know."

"You sigh. A lot. What's bothering you so damn badly?"

"You don't want to hear it."

"No, you're right, I don't, but if it means I'll get some sleep tonight, then let it out."

"Chris...I...it's just that..."

"Fuck me, Toby." Toby's eyes unbidden traced the lines of Chris' chest. God, what was this? Was this love? Rutting animals felt closer to the truth. He turned his eyes down reluctantly, out of shame or frustration he could not say.

"That doesn't solve anything."

"No. You let yourself get fucked too often to know what it is to fuck someone else." Toby looked up into his eyes.

"Chris, everything we do only drives me farther into my problems. It only forces me to look at myself with a sharper mirror." Chris regarded him silently, nothing on his face betraying his own thoughts. That was another thing about him Toby could never reach, Chris played his cards so closely to his chest, he could never really tell what was the truth and what was a lie. They laid there in silence for what seemed an eternity. Suddenly, Chris leaned forward, finding Toby's mouth with his own. His hands dug into the small of Toby's back, pressing him as closely as he could, driving him against his body in an almost desperate fervor. Toby opened his mouth, feeling that pull, that existential force that seemed to pour through Chris' mouth and into his chest. He wanted to be closer, closer, closer. Chris' tongue forced its way into Toby's mouth. The sensation was so powerful his whole chest shuddered; he felt his body arouse so strongly it was painful.

Chris pulled Toby on top of him, grabbing his thighs hard enough to make Toby cry out.

"That will leave a mark." Chris' voice was thick and heavy, before Toby could answer, Chris kissed him again, so hard and so deeply Toby very nearly cried out a second time. Instead, something different happened. Toby pushed against Chris, dropping him against the pillow; his chest was pounding, Chris' own breathing shallow, his dark eyes watching Toby closely. Chris' hands gripped Toby's waist, just as quickly Toby grabbed his wrists and threw them against the headboard, pinning them just above Chris' head. He moved his face down, staring into Chris' eyes, staring into that mystery, that inky darkness.

"Tell me one thing I can believe. Tell me one thing I never have to doubt." Chris smiled, nearly laughing, but something in Toby`s eyes made him stop. He looked away, toward the pod walls, his breath still quick and heavy. He sighed, never struggling against Toby's grip, never moving to throw him aside, he sighed and slowed his breathing, slowed his thoughts. Then, barely a whisper, he spoke.

"I need you."

In that moment Toby realized that everything was so very simple: here, Chris was everything. He loved Chris, and was not ashamed; it ran like a deep current through his body, connected to everything that was and would be Tobias Beecher.

Chris shifted beneath him.

"Is confession over, Father?" His smile, that smile, had returned. Toby released his hands and laid down against Chris' chest.

"Yes." He smiled himself. "Now don't move."
Please send feedback to GhaniHwi.