Wicked Game Ch. 18byvelvetpie©
Shane was extremely nervous.
He had made a triumphant return to Marshall, much to the delight of the cheerleader core and his football buds. Everyone asked where he’d been. He just said that he’d been on vacation. He didn’t tell them about the hefty cashier’s check that he’d deposited in the bank this morning. He didn’t tell them about the sexual escapades. And he certainly didn’t tell them about Jaime. The first thing he’d done was to run up to his room, only to find it empty. No note, no message. He even went to the newspaper’s office to see if he was still there, but his cubicle had been cleaned. All anyone knew was that he’d left.
His conversation with Jaime’s mother, Deloris, had cleared a lot up. She said that Jaime had transferred to another college and was getting himself settled into his new life. She also knew that something had happened between them and had asked if they were lovers. Shane answered her. He had a feeling that she’d known about their mutual attraction for awhile and was just waiting for one of them to consummate it. She had no problem with it. Jaime’s father was still in deep denial but never turned his back on his son. He just preferred not to hear about it.
It had taken Shane less than a week to get back into the hang of classes but everything was different. He was used to seeing Jaime in the morning on the way to the showers, giving him all the latest dorm gossip and showing him pictures that he’d taken the previous day. Each morning, there was no Jaime. There was no Jaime to accompany him to the cafeteria, no Jaime to talk to at night, no Jaime to give him confidence before a game. No Jaime. Period.
He didn’t like it. He called Coach Jacobs and made an appointment with him. Now as he sat outside the coach’s office, he was very nervous. He planned to end his football career today and he had no idea how the rest of the day was going to pan out. Everything rested on the coach’s shoulders.
Penny, the coach’s secretary, came out, a stack of papers in her hands. “Coach Jacobs will see you now.”
“Thanks, Penny.” Shane strode into Coach Alton Jacobs’ office, sat in a chair and waited for him to get off the phone. He thought about the first time he’d sat in this smelly, sweat-drenched office and wondered if this would be the last time.
“You wanted to talk to me, son?”
“Yes, sir.” Shane swiveled around to make sure that the door was shut and seeing that it was, he continued. “You know that I’ve been on vacation.”
“Yeah, where’d you go?”
“It’s a long story but I ended up in the Bahamas and I discovered a lot of things about myself.”
Coach Jacobs sat back and observed his star quarterback, knowing from instinct that this young man had something important to say. Something that obviously mattered a great deal to him. Shane Kingsley had always been a stand-up kid, long on talent and no-nonsense wits and Jacobs was determined to give the kid a chance, no matter what the problem was. “Go on.”
“I don’t want to take up your precious time, coach. I have a problem. I want to share it with you but I have to have your assurance that the nature of my problem won’t leave this room.”
“Hold on a second.” Jacobs thumbed the intercom at his elbow. “Penny, would you get myself and Mr. Kingsley a Dr. Pepper?”
“Uh, yes, sir.”
Jacobs knew that the Dr. Pepper was only in a machine that was a twenty minute walk away. And he knew that Penny knew it. He waited a few minutes, making sure that she’d left her desk before turning his eyes back to Shane. “All right, Kingsley. You’re clear.”
“Sir, to put it neatly, I’m gay.” It took a full 30 seconds for the impact of the words he’d spoken to reach the coach’s brain. He knew that Jacobs felt the words but he wanted to see his body language. The coach’s eyes narrowed and he sat back in his chair, chewing on his ink pen’s lid. “Did you hear me, coach?”
“Yeah, I heard you. I’m just … digesting.”
Shane patiently waited for the coach to look back up at him. When he did, he continued. “I’ve given my heart and soul for this team for the last three years. These last few weeks, I’ve learned that my heart is in a different place and belongs to someone that I care very much about.”
“Jaime Scott?” Jacobs laughed at Shane’s expression of confusion. “I’ve known about your friendship with Jaime for a long time. He’s quite a photographer.”
“Uh, yes, sir.”
“We do a lot of research about our athletes before we invite them to come here. Alvin and I have been keeping an eye on you just to make sure that you didn’t embarrass us or yourself and you seem to have done a good job.” Jacobs sat forward. “So what is it that you want to talk about?”
“I don’t know how to say this but I am extremely fond of Jaime.”
“Thank you for not saying ‘I love him’, even though I can see it in your face.”
“Yes, sir.” Shane took a breath. “Jaime’s left the university and I came here to tender my resignation.”
“You’re going off to find him, is that it?”
“Let me say a few things. Number one, what’s going to happen when you find him? He didn’t just leave without a reason.”
“I don’t know, sir. I’m hoping that he’ll come back.”
“And after that?”
“He wanted to move in together and I said that that wouldn’t be a good idea.”
“Well, at least one of you was thinking with the right head.” Jacobs chuckled. “The second thing I can say is that Alvin and I have no problem with your sexual orientation. You don’t seem the type to broadcast your business and I know you have a good heart. If you were to find Mr. Scott and bring him back here, there would be some basic rules that we would want you to adhere to. Rules I’m sure you wouldn’t have a problem with.”
“The third thing is that you have to remember that you’re here on a scholarship. If you leave this university, you lose it. You only have a year left.”
Shane scratched his head, thinking about Jaime’s soft lips. “So what are my options as you see them, coach?”
“I’m going to tell you what I think as if I’m you, Shane, so listen up.” Jacobs sat back and took a few moments to formulate his words. “If I were you, I’d do the following. First, I’d continue my education and scholarship here at Marshall. Number two, I’d find Jaime and bring him back. And number three, I’d talk to the coach about alternative off-campus housing. Lastly, when I brought him back, I’d install him in my new residence, live a quiet life until I graduated, then continue my life and leave this place far behind.”
A thrill of hope raced through Shane as he swallowed past the lump in his throat. Coach Jacobs was going out on a limb to accommodate him like this. “Alternative housing?”
“Apartments that the coaching staff have been given for use by football athletes who are married or get married in the course of their athletic and academic studies here.”
“Sir, I’m not married not likely to be.”
“No, but Anna is pregnant, is she not?”
Again, Shane stared at him in shock. “Uh, yes, she is.”
“Then she will do. She would be more than happy to sign the papers for you and Jaime to live in the apartments as long as you allow her to keep the monetary supplement.”
“I have no problem with that.”
“Good.” Coach Jacobs scribbled on a pad. “I’ll arrange a two bedroom apartment for you with the explanation that you require additional security due to your elevated position on the team.”
“And Jaime’s presence? How will you explain that?”
“He’s been your best friend for three years. Will people suddenly expect him not to be?”
Shane felt his innards trembling as he realized that all of his dreams were coming to pass and from the most unexpected places. He had fully expected to leave this office as an ex-quarterback and college dropout. He would be leaving as a starting quarterback, college senior and soon-to-be happy citizen.
Jacobs saw the change in Kingsley and released his breath in a grunt. Shane was one of the best quarterbacks that Marshall had ever seen. He knew that he’d go at the top of the draft and fortunately, the kid knew what his gender preference would do to his career and it would have been a real shame to see Shane throw his NFL potential away. He might not be able to walk down the street with Jaime but they could certainly have a life. And Anna, who was devoid of a husband, would surely welcome someone to help her with the baby.
“Well, what are you waiting for?”
“Nothing, sir.” Shane stammered, still deep in thought. “I was just thinking that I need to find out where Jaime is.”
“Bennington College.” Jacobs stood, shoving a well-chewed stub of cigar into his mouth and lighting it. “Alvin says that it’s gay-friendly.”
“I didn’t know that there was such a thing.”
“I didn’t either.” Jacobs said. “That’s why Alvin is paid so well to be my assistant.”
There was a knock on the door and Penny strode in, cold Dr. Peppers in her hands. Shane took his and drank it quickly down. Jacobs opened his and drank thoughtfully. “Thank you for your time, sir.”
“Never a problem, Shane.” The coach sucked on his cigar, blowing acrid smoke into the air. “When you find him, let me know. And I’ll let you know what’s going on with the apartment scene.”
“Yes, sir.” Shane extended his hand with a smile. “Thanks again, sir.”
Jacobs, a self-avowed homophobe, looked into the clear eyes of his favorite quarterback and took his hand. “Like I said, never a problem. Just get to me first, eh?”
Jaime felt a little funny. It had only been two months since he’d left Marshall and while he was glad that he’d found a gay-friendly college, he was having a hell of a time fitting in. It was so much easier at Marshall. But then, it was only easy because he’d met Shane. A lump welled up in his throat as he thought about his best friend. He missed him so much. He missed their drunken conversations. He missed their food fights. He missed their lovemaking. He just missed Shane’s presence. Just knowing that he was across the hall was always enough for him. Until he’d kissed him. Until he’d felt the passion wielded by Shane and had been swallowed in its inferno.
But he had to continue with his life and this mixer was his first step in the social direction. A gay-themed party with the appropriate electronica and neon lights. Jaime moved along the gaily-decorated walls, watching the muscle-laden twinks dance and wishing that Shane was here. They’d be laughing their asses off and having a good time. He wished he was having a good time.
Someone across the room caught his eye. Tall, maybe six foot. Blonde hair that flashed like silver in the disco lights. White pants, probably denim and a silk shirt, open to nipple level. Eyes searching, examining every face as if looking for one particular person. Oh, my God! The person crossed the dance floor, searching the occupants, then looking on this side of the room. When the eyes settled on him, Jaime felt his mouth suddenly dry up. It was Shane.
Shane saw Jaime trying to hide in the shadow and smiled, striding toward him. His old friend and lover didn’t have the courage to speak to him so he knew that he’d have to convince Jaime of his intentions. “Jaime.”
Jaime tried to pretend that he didn’t hear Shane but he couldn’t stop himself from meeting his eyes. “What are you doing here?”
“You know what I’m here for.”
“You, of course.”
“I’m not interested, Shane.”
“Of course you are.” In his entire life, Shane had never used his looks to his advantage but he did now. He bent close so that Jaime could smell his cologne and brushed his lips against Jaime’s cheek. “You’re just mad at me and you have every right to be angry with me.” Shane lowered his voice. “But I love you and I’m not leaving here without you.”
“What about your precious game?”
“And the football team?”
“Everything’s been taken care of. I’ll tell you later. Right now, you have to come with me.”
Jaime growled in anger. “I don’t have to go anywhere.”
“No, you don’t.” Shane relented. “I guess I can go back to school and find someone else.” Shane waited for Jaime’s reaction. “I guess you don’t love me any more.”
“That’s not fair!”
“No, it’s not, but what do you expect me to do? Wait around for you to make up your mind?” Shane took a breath. “Do you know a place to have a drink and some food around here?”
“Then let’s go and talk.”
Jaime looked up into Shane’s eyes and knew he had already lost the entire war, fuck the battle. “Okay.”
Jaime allowed Shane to drive him to a diner on the other side of town called Mickey’s. Shane ordered a Heineken with a lime and twenty wings with suicide sauce. Jaime laughed, knowing that the sauce would give Shane the runs in the morning and ordered a shot of Don Pablo and a chicken burrito.
“It seems nice here.”
“It is.” Jaime felt stupid trying to make up conversation with Shane. Shane had always been able to talk him under the table, even when they were drunk. “It’s very nice.”
“And how is it without me?”
Jaime fought to find arrogant words to feed Shane but he was being nothing but a gentleman. Jaime knew that he couldn’t fight his ex-lover, but he didn’t want to be easy. “Lonely.”
Shane checked the emotion in Jaime’s face. “How do you think I’m feeling?”
“I don’t know.” Jaime bit into his burrito. “You seemed to be fine when I left.”
“Jaime, I love you.” Shane didn’t want to show his hand right away but he just couldn’t wait to take Jaime in his arms. “Being without you has been driving me crazy.”
“Yeah, right.” Jaime laughed. “The football demi-god Shane Kingsley?”
“Jaime, you know I’ve never traded on my abilities. And you know that I never will.” Shane finished the last of his wings, carefully wiping his hands and swallowing the last of his beer. “Look at me, Jaime.” He waited until the photographer was looking at his face. “I came here to get you and bring you back to Marshall. Everything is set up for us. All you have to do is come back.”
“And my scholarship? I gave it up.”
“Dr. Means in the scholarship office said that he’d let you back as long as you’d consent to train his secretary to work Word 2000.” Jaime laughed, then met Shane’s eyes again.
Shane threw a twenty on the table as he stood. “I’m staying at the Marriott and I’ll be leaving at checkout time, eleven o’clock. If I don’t hear from you before then, I’ll assume that you don’t want me.” Shane’s heart jumped at his own words. “I’ll wait to hear from you.”
Jaime sat at the table and watched Shane leave, feeling his heart breaking a second time. What do you want? His bruised heart asked. Jaime knew.
Shane returned to Marshall with his tail between his legs and his heart in tatters. Jaime hadn’t shown up at the hotel nor had he even called. Again, Shane had cried himself to sleep, thinking that the sheer force of his charisma and the depth of his love would be enough to sway Jaime’s heart but it hadn’t worked. Three long weeks passed and Shane struggled through finals, watching while everyone else made their summer plans and preparations and he was only looking forward to a lonely new apartment.
He got a summer job with a reputable computer firm and prepared to get drunk every night. His first week at the job was hard but he was glad to have done it. The experience it would give him would be something that he couldn’t get anywhere else and it was near his home, a perfect deal.
When he’d arrived home late on a Saturday night, two weeks after he’d gotten the job, he received quite a surprise. The lights were on in his house and a strange car was in his driveway. He parked behind the intruder, concerned that he was being robbed and used his key to open the door.
A short set of stairs led up into the kitchen, dining and living room, bathroom and one bedroom. The remaining full bathroom, master bedroom and storage space was located downstairs. On the end of the banister was a letter with a calla lily taped onto it.
Dear Shane, It took me awhile to get everything arranged but I am back at Marshall. I haven’t signed up for a summer dorm room because I wanted to believe in what you told me the last time that we saw each other. That you had everything ‘set up’ for us. I got into town and Coach Jacobs told me about your new apartment and gave me a key, in case you’re wondering how I got in.
I have prepared dinner for us tonight so that I can hear what you wanted to tell me last time we met. I hope you still want to tell me. I’m in the kitchen. Cold wine is waiting. Please join me. Jaime.
Shane dropped his briefcase in the hallway and trotted up the stairs, tossing his keys into the silver key dish that Jaime had bought him. Jaime was in the kitchen, an apron around his waist and the most delectable smell emanating from the oven. He was diligently tearing lettuce for salad, adding it to a bowl of carrot shavings, black olives slices, shredded cheese and tomato wedges and dousing it with raspberry vinaigrette.
Jaime didn’t know how to react and his emotions got the best of him. Shane opened his arms and Jaime walked into them, burying his face in his lover’s chest and trembling with relief. “I’m sorry, Shane.”
“Quiet.” Shane whispered, hugging Jaime to his body, inhaling his scent and thanking the powers that be for his good luck. “Don’t be sorry for anything, Jaime.”
“But … “
“Will you shut up?”
Both men laughed after a moment and Shane released Jaime, touching his cheek. “Go take a shower and change your clothes. Dinner’s almost ready.”
After a shower and a wonderful dinner of garlicky lamb chops, Brussels sprouts and salad, Jaime sat on the couch with Shane, sipping sauvignon blanc and nibbling on Thompson green grapes and cantaloupe chunks.
“Is it true?”
“Yep. This apartment is ours. I can finish my education and play for the team and you can take pictures for the paper and finish your education.”
“And after that?”
“It’s up to us.”
Jaime took a breath. This same dream that he’d prayed so fervently for just days ago was coming back to life. “Us?”
“Yes. Us.” Shane set his glass down. “I’m tired of the bullshit. I want you to bring your stuff and put it into the other room by tomorrow afternoon or I’ll kick your ass.”
“You’ll kick my ass?”
“Yeah. Your ass!”
Shane grabbed Jaime’s arm, sending the glass flying and trying his best to pin his friend. Jaime laughed, recalling all the times they had wrestled like champions. Now, it was different. It wasn’t so much who could pin who. Shane knew it. He pinned Jaime to the carpet and pressed his mouth against his, biting his tongue and nibbling his lips. Jaime gasped and with a surge of power, he pushed Shane over onto his back, lowered his head and applied his lips and teeth to Shane’s throat. This time, Shane gasped, feeling his prick twitch anxiously in his pants.
“You give up?”
“Yeah.” Shane opened his mouth to Jaime’s kiss, running his hands through his hair. “You win.”
“What did I win?”
“Whatever you want.”
“I want you inside me.”
Jaime’s words brought Shane’s eyes up to meet his. “Are you sure? You’ve never … “
“I know. I trust you, Shane. I know you won’t hurt me.”
Shane gazed into Jaime’s eyes, then reached up and touched his cheek. “I would never hurt you.”
They kissed all the way downstairs to the master bedroom and took the time to slowly strip each other’s clothes off, admiring every inch of uncovered flesh. Shane pulled Jaime onto the queen-size bed and kissed his way down his trim body until he reached his stiff cock. This would be Jaime’s first time and he wanted to make it as perfect as he possibly could. He kissed the soft skin just above his pubes, gently nipping and drawing hisses from Jaime. “Shane, you don’t have to.”
“Will you shut up?” He shot Jaime a playful grin and bent over his cock, swallowing it in one long pass.