Longest Day

by Iceland Warrior

A Symphony in Words

Prologue

I watched as the boy turned away from the track and steered his wiry pony through the fog and over the rough terrain to the edge of the canyon. I was so close to him, I could have reached out and touched him, but he didn't see me. The roar of the falls filled his ears, the spray mingled with the tears streaming down his face. His whole world was for that minute focused on the turbulent waters at the base of the waterfall. His breathing was ragged and sobs racked his youthful form. He clutched a book tightly in one hand; just a plain black book, the initials SR just visible on the worn leather cover. He held the book high in the air, a black oblong like a tombstone against the fog. It seemed to the young man that above the roar of the falls he heard a sigh go up, like a release, a consummation. Gazing down, through his mingled tears and spray, in his own language he spoke in a low, hoarse voice saying,

- Bless, elskan min - be blessed, my beloved.

He tucked the book into his jacket, over his heart. The falls continued their relentless roaring as they always had and always would, but for him, there was an extra sound in them; the quiet, intimate laughter of a friend, a lover, a soulmate. The young man slowly turned his pony round and made his way through the swirling mist over the sparse vegetation back from whence he had come, the memories flooding over him. It began to rain and the sky wept with him as his tears fell freely....

***

June 17 2003

So now I know. The months of uncertainty, endless visits to specialists, countless phials of blood leeched from my body, new drugs, wonder drugs, a breakthrough...then this morning's visit to my doctor and his soft voice washing over me, as I gazed unseeing ahead of me, looking all around, taking in nothing, a roaring in my ears, his voice filtering through my inward screaming... "tried everything..." ...." nothing more to be done...." "...a few months, at most..." The cancer too far gone, not responding to treatment, and now finally nothing more to be done, all the possibilities used up. Do not pass Go, do not collect £200. Malignancy from nowhere; I don't smoke, drink in moderation, eat healthily, and this is how I am repaid. A life thrown away, no - snatched away. Before I can leave my mark. All my childhood preparing me for what? For this.

Mercifully my parents aren't alive to see me now. The freak storm saw to that, bringing the tree down on to their car. At least they had achieved something with their lives; honour, money ...and me. So when it is my turn, I shall be the last, no family left. Who will bury me? I need to disappear for a while, leave the busy, uncaring city and collect my thoughts, find some peace to grapple with this bleakness. Somewhere I have not been before, where I will not run into someone I know, somewhere off the beaten track, the outdoors, enjoy my last summer on earth. I shall go to the travel agent's tomorrow and pick something at random. Now I need to sleep, take something for this physical and mental pain. Sleep. Find peace. I don't want to dream, it will only be the same one I always have...

June 18

I don't know why I'm keeping this diary. I never have, til now. Who is going to read it anyway? Who would care? For me it will be something to leave behind, so that there will be at least something of me, my soul, after I'm gone. Just knowing it will be there makes me want to write it and be honest. Strange that I can be honest in writing, when up to now I haven't faced up to who I am. Up til now. Now it is too late. This book will be my testament, my epitaph, my eulogy. If anyone ever sees it, then perhaps they will know me, though they never met me.

Of course I had my recurring dream last night, despite the medication. It is always the same: I am wandering, lost in some sort of fog, a kind of limbo. It feels like I am walking a tightrope, or as if I were close to some hidden danger. There's this roaring close to me, like an inferno, but there is no heat. I am cold and frightened, and very, very alone. Suddenly I feel as though the earth has given away beneath my feet and I begin to fall, closer and closer to the roaring fire. I always wake up at that point, sweating and screaming.

Last night, though, I didn't wake up then, but dreamt on. I felt as though I was being held in mid-air, almost supported like I was in a harness on a bungee-jump, and I seemed to sense a great warmth around me and some sort of gentle light. I could have sworn someone or something was close to my face, breathing on me. So calm, so peaceful. All I wanted to do was to lie back and let go completely. Peace. Tranquility. Boundless, inexpressible joy. I felt as though I was in love with everyone and everything and about to find out the answer to a great mystery.

It was then I woke. The tears were coursing down my face, but I felt not despair, but some vague shadow of the dream still over me. I think it was then that I decided what I must do. Usually my sleeping-pills leave me with a headache in the mornings, but today I felt strangely lightheaded, as if I had smoked some good weed. I eventually got up to face the day and make my arrangements. How easy is it to disappear? How hard will it be to leave everything behind? I left my apartment and began walking. The weather was mild and sunny, what a change from the cold and wet weather we had been having up til now. The feeling of lightheadedness stayed with me. I suddenly felt calm, minutely aware of everything around me, as if they had been newly painted in bright colours. The memory of the peace I had felt in my dream seemed to wrap itself around me, cocooning me from the outside world.

I found the travel agent's and walked in. There was no clear idea in my head; I was prepared to let things take their course. Part of me felt that whatever happened, it would be predetermined. I took a ticket and waited my turn. I idly flicked through brochures offering cheap holidays on crowded sunny beaches, the tanned, smiling bodies seeming to say that if I went to this place I would automatically be one of the "in" crowd, vibrant, healthy, carefree and youthful. It did not appeal to me. I was certainly not vibrant, and as for healthy! that was a joke. Another magazine showed mountains, waterfalls, glaciers, volcanoes and hot springs. What a diversity!

It was the small ad which described a pony-trekking holiday over the highlands of Iceland which caught my eye for some reason. The accompanying blurb talked of "unspoiled nature" and "wide open spaces" and "freedom". A picture next to it showed a boy on a pony, completely alone in the enormous landscape, with the caption "Find yourself in Iceland". All I knew about Iceland was from the weather reports on the television, there always seemed to be a depression centred off Iceland! The photograph showed however, a cloudless blue sky, vivid green plains, granite-grey mountains and in the distance, a bright white glacier towering over the hills. I thought it was good marketing, considering I thought it must always rain there! The boy on the pony was wheaten-haired, his fresh complexion and bright sparkling eyes exuding health. I gazed at the youth in the picture and a longing deep inside of me made itself felt. Time stood still.

- Number 25

- Number 25! The call came again, rousing me from my daydream. I looked up, to see that it was my turn. I went to the booth and sat down, still clutching the magazine with the Icelandic advertisement in my hand. The young man who had called my number smiled and asked me what he could do for me. Without knowing why, I pointed to the advertisement and asked him to give me more details. It seemed my mind had been made up, although I had not made a conscious decision.

- This is a new holiday we are offering, he said. - One week, or two, trekking across the interior of Iceland. You will have a guide and accommodation will be in mountain huts. It's an active holiday for active people, who don't mind roughing it, he added, looking at me and I could see him wondering whether I would have the stamina for it. - There's not been much call for this trip and I'm not sure whether anyone has booked yet. When were you thinking of going?

- As soon as possible, I replied, knowing that time was not something I had plenty of.

- Let me see. He tapped away at his computer and then said - well, there's a trip starting the day after tomorrow, a week, which no-one has yet booked, but that might change. Our contacts say that the trips will go ahead as planned this year, even though there are only a few people participating. If you don't want a lot of company, then this is ideal. But take warm clothing. Even the summers can be chilly in Iceland and the weather is very changeable, to say the least, he smiled. - The horses are very docile and easy to ride, so you don't need to be an expert horseman. How does that sound?

- Sounds fine, I replied.

So, twenty minutes later it was all arranged: morning flight to Keflavik Airport, take the transfer bus to the terminal in Reykjavik, where I would be met by my guide and taken to the starting point just outside the city. All inclusive, food, accommodation, insurance.

- Enjoy yourself, said the young man as he handed me my travel documents. - You will see there's a questionnaire here, we would value your comments on this new type of holiday we are offering. Just pop it in the post when you get back.

I murmured something, thanked him and left the travel agent's. I would need to get some warm clothing and I wanted to spend the rest of my time here tying up loose ends.

So here I am, planning my "disappearance", my permanent disappearance and writing everything in this little book. Am I weird? Why am I doing this? I don't know. Even more weird, I feel almost happy, for the first time in ages. It's like a difficult decision I thought had to be made turns out to be much easier. Why Iceland? Pony-trekking for heaven's sake! I have never ridden a horse in my life! Something about the ad seemed to click with me, "Find yourself in Iceland". The spectacular photograph, and the beautiful youth on the chestnut pony. Yes. I am gay.There. I've written it down. Gay. Gay. Gay. And alone. I am only 20, but I feel old. Tired. The cancer inside of me will soon incapacitate me for good and after a few, painfilled months, I will be no longer.

Why did it have to be like this? Why haven't I found anyone like me? I know, I am a loner, and after my parents' death, I withdrew into my shell and didn't have anyone close enough to me to draw me out again. I was always shy, a poor mixer. Well, I'm not going to wallow in self-pity. That's the way it is, and that's that. But, if only it had worked out those years ago, with Pete, my best friend at school. "Best friend!" What a way to describe him! That was what my and his parents thought we were, but we knew better. We shared something else. Something which has stayed with me ever since... I must write it down. Get it out of my system.

Pete and I were in the school band, he was a year older than I, and played drums. I squeaked away on clarinet. In my eyes, he was so cool, trendy t-shirts, tight-fitting jeans, long dark hair and big brown eyes. Way too cool to notice me, a fifteen year-old nerd, always one of the crowd, while he always stood out. I couldn't keep my eyes off him. Back then I didn't know what "gay" was, or sex or anything like that. Sheltered. I had my computer and the clarinet. That was all. he had looks, always surrounded by friends, the subject of all the girls' attentions. He revelled in it. He just knew what he had to offer. So self-assured. I spent band practices sneaking glances at him and following his every move.

To this day, I don't know how or why he noticed me, but one day, after practice we found ourselves together, leaving school. Even though he seemed to have masses of friends and the girls thought he was hot, and didn't make a secret of it, he seemed to be mostly on his own. I was waiting for the bus to take me home, when suddenly he was at my side. Close to, he was awesome. Those brown eyes seemed so gentle, his skin was unblemished, not a zit in sight - and his long dark hair, which I ached to stroke. He spoke;

- Cool piece, that "Star Wars" theme, he said. He was talking to me! I must have looked a real idiot! I just stared back at him, unable to say anything.

- Great parts for the drums! I eventually found my voice and croaked something unintelligible, which was meant to sound like a Yes.

- You been playing long? he asked me. This beautiful boy was talking to me and all I could do was stand there like a total zombie and blush!

- Er, no, just a year or so, I stammered. Silence. Say something! my mind screamed at me. Just then a bus came.

- That's mine, he said and swung himself aboard. So lithe. So slim. His whole body seemed to float on air. I stood rooted to the spot, mouth open, face flushed bright crimson, just gaping.

- See ya next practice! he called as the bus pulled away. He smiled and was gone. I felt as though the bus had driven right over me. I couldn't breathe properly and realised I was shaking like a leaf. What a jerk he must think I am I thought, and cursed myself for acting like a real dickhead. I had waited for this moment, lived it in my mind countless times and when it actually happened, I was like turned to stone! Or rather jelly. I needed to sit down and collect my confused thoughts. I had probably thrown away the only chance I would ever have to get to know him. He would probably just write me off as a nerdy loser and ignore me. I felt devastated. My bus came and on the way home I relived the scene in my mind at least a hundred times.

I got home, raced up to my bedroom, locked the door and threw myself on my bed. I had just been spoken to by the most beautiful boy in the whole world, and all I could do was stutter. I almost wept with frustration. Gradually, I calmed down, and thought about when I would see him again. I envisaged his dark brown silky hair, his wonderful eyes, and those lips....so close to mine... I felt myself grow hard, achingly hard, as my hand crept under the waistband of my trousers, to feel the proof of my desire, throbbing in my hand.

Visions of Pete swam before my closed eyes: Pete in mortal danger, and me saving him. Pete, with a rare disease, needing a transplant, which only I could give him, Pete with me on holiday. Pete with me in a tent, in my sleeping-bag, his supple, naked body pressed to mine. His cock, straight and stiff, rubbing against mine, two slick bodies pressed hard together, our mouths joined, our tongues exploring, our breath becoming more and more ragged as finally, we come together.

Without any help from my hand, my cock spasmed, and I came, gloriously, shudderingly, again and again. Spurt after spurt of jism shot from my cockhead into my jockeys, flooding me and overwhelming me. I lay there, gasping for a long time, feeling my cum, as it slowly dried in my underwear. I groaned aloud for Pete, "My" Pete. I resolved that when I saw him at next band practice, I wouldn't be such a jerk. I would be ready.

Band practice came around again. I looked out for Pete, as usual. Fiddling with my clarinet, putting it together, I kept my eyes on the doors. No Pete. The music-teacher came in, and the rehearsal began. I was unbearably disappointed. All week long, I had been screwing myself up for this moment, ready to respond to him, if he spoke to me. And when I did have the courage, he wasn't there! It was so unfair! Somehow or other, I kept my eyes on the notes, not really seeing them, I was almost ready to weep.

About fifteen minutes into the session, the doors opened, and the object of my desire came in. His cheerful, cheeky face framed by that wonderful hair. He smiled at the teacher and apologized for being late, he had been in a chemistry project which had over-run, he said. The teacher just nodded and got on with the rehearsal. Typical! Pete could charm his way out of any situation, just with that wonderful smile of his. If it had been me who was late, I would been bawled out. But anyway, he was here. I sneaked a glance at him. He was looking in my direction, and gave me a hardly perceptible wink and a delicious grin, as if to say "well, got out of that one then!" I half smiled back, but with my clarinet in my mouth, I must have looked like something from a freakshow.

The practice ended and I began to pack up my clarinet, going deliberately slowly, so as to coincide with Pete who had to clear the drums away. I saw that he was about ready to leave, so "accidentally" got to the doors at the same time as him. We went through together, and as we did so, he said to me in a low voice, - actually it wasn't a chemistry project, it was biology! He winked at me. I had no idea what he was talking about, and must have shown total incomprehension.

- I had something which needed taking in hand, dummy! he whispered, and giggled. I stared at him in disbelief as I gradually thought I understood what he was talking about.

- Well, I can't help it, he added. - it just happens sometimes, and I just have to take care of it! He winked again and giggled again. It was infectious, and I found myself giggling with him as we left the building towards the bus stop.

- Wwhich is y-your b-bus? I stammered. Brilliant opening gambit dickhead, I thought. You saw him get on it last week.

- I can take either the 24 or 12, he answered. Which is yours?

- T-twelve, I said.

- OK, we can ride together. Where do you get off?

- At the corner by the park, I replied.

- OK, I can cut through the park to my place. Where do you live?

I told him, and we found out he lived on the other side of the park from me. A number 12 arrived and we got on, finding a seat up front. We sat together, our bodies touching. I was aware of his thigh touching mine, his shoulder to my shoulder. It was lucky that I had my clarinet with me, I put it on my lap as I felt my cock harden. This was unbelievable! I was sitting jammed right against the most beautiful boy in the world. We were so close to each other, if we both turned our heads towards each other, we could kiss...the thought kept revolving around and around in my brain. I was hardly hearing what he was saying, until a hefty poke in the ribs brought me round.

- Hellooo! Earth to Steve. Come in Steve!

He knew my name! How come he knew who I was? I was just one of the nerds. Not in his year or his circle of friends or anything.

- How do you know my name? I asked.

- Oh, one asks around, he replied shrugging his shoulders and gazing nonchalantly through the window.

- I'm Pete, by the way.

As if he needed to tell me that!

- Everyone knows who you are, I responded, before I had time to stop myself.

He looked at me in a strange way.

- Really? Did you know who I was?

I had put myself on the spot. I couldn't tell him I had found out his name by looking at the music teacher's register when no-one was looking.

- Erm I, er, er...I heard someone calling you, I added lamely.

He smiled and said - well that's the introductions over, I suppose. You into Playstation?

I had to admit that I wasn't. I just used my computer for schoolwork and my own "amusement" on the Internet, but I couldn't tell him that.

- Er, no. I'm not much into 'puter games.

- 'K.

He went silent, but looked as if he wanted to say something more. I was just enjoying the sensation of sitting next to him, and my cock certainly was enjoying the sensation! It was as hard as steel and leaking precum bigtime.

Suddenly, there seemed to be nothing to say. O my God! I was going to waste this opportunity as well! I had to think of something, and fast. My stop was approaching. What could I do? It was then that he spoke, a little hoarsely, it seemed to me. like he had a frog in his throat.

- Erm, you doing anything afterwards? Wanna hang out? I could show you some cool games sites on the 'Net... If you want to, that is.

If I didn't know better, I would have said Pete was nervous, embarrassed, even. Hey, not cool dude Pete, the drummer. But why did he seem to be blushing?

- That would be great, I said, a little too eagerly. I've got nothing on...I mean...

I was covered in confusion. He and I looked at each other and then burst out laughing. Suddenly it seemed like we had known each other all our lives and I felt totally at ease.

- My parents won't be back til later, so we can be as long as we like on the 'Net without them bugging us, I said.

We arrived at my stop and got off the bus. I had to keep my clarinet held in front of my very obvious hardon and as we got up out of our seats, I glanced towards Pete's crotch area. He seemed to be either having "a bit of trouble" himself, or else he was very well endowed.

We walked, or rather cantered to my place, let ourselves in and on the way up to my room stopped by at the fridge to stock up on Cokes.

Upstairs we settled in front of my 'puter, and while we waited for it to boot up, I excused myself to take a leak.

My cock was still semi-hard and I couldn't resist giving it a few strokes. Wow! Pete was in my house, in my room!! If only... I forced myself to stop my thoughts there and then, otherwise I would have another major hardon. I managed to point my dick in the right place and take a piss.

I went back to the bedroom. Pete was sitting at the computer, staring at something as if transfixed. He jumped when I came into the room and tried to close the file, but was too slow. Oh my God! I had left a file with some stories from the Nifty Archive on my desktop and it was one of them that Pete was reading! I stopped dead in my tracks and Peter turned to look at me. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck!!!!


Fuck! What a dimwit jerk I was! I had blown my cover and Pete had to know I was gay. Fuck! We looked at each other for what seemed like an eternity. I had blushed deep crimson, knowing that Pete would be out of my house and out of my life for ever. Fuck! Now it would be all round the school and my life wouldn't be worth living any more. Fuck! But Pete didn't get up and push past me. He didn't have any expression on his face, except for maybe relief. What was going on? Was this a new twist to the plot? Had I missed something here? I moved forward, stuttering something about accidental downloads and some crap like that, but Pete interrupted me.

- Good stories eh? I like the Highschool ones.

What??? did I hear right? Did Pete just say he read Nifty too?

- Have you been following the Chris and Nigel story by iomfats?

I didn't know what he meant, or couldn't believe my ears. I was at the computer now, standing beside him. He stood up, very slowly and looked me right in the eye. - I read Nifty as well, Steve, he said. -It's OK man, I am into other boys myself...in fact... I am into one boy in particular.

His voice was raspy. He hadn't taken his eyes off me, and he slowly leaned towards me. At that moment, Nature took over and we closed in, like we were two powerful magnets. Our lips met, pressing hard together. I felt his arm go behind my head, grasping my neck, whilst his right arm found its way to the small of my back. I just stood there, totally freaked out. I would like to say that our first kiss was like New Year's eve or the Fourth of July or something, but it wasn't. In fact, our mouths didn't properly meet and our teeth sort of jarred together. But, his lips were sweet, his tongue tasted of the Coke we had drunk and it was so warm, so gentle, like nothing I had ever experienced. Our lips parted and we looked at each other, me into his deep brown liquid eyes. I saw so much love there and also unease. This was so new! I think Pete was as surprised as I.

- Oh God, Pete, I...you...I mean...

I was totally lost for words.

Pete put a finger to my lips and shushed me.

- I hoped it would happen. I so wanted this to happen. You have no idea how long I have been thinking about this, he whispered. - You are so beautiful, Steve.

- Me? You must be kidding me! You are so hot, Pete, you have no idea. I'm just, just a geeky nerd, and you, you are the most wonderful g....I had to stop talking then, as Pete's lips pushed against mine. This time, there was proper contact and our mouths relaxed into each other's, lips parting, tongues dancing as we held each other achingly tight. I could feel his cock through his trousers, as hard as mine, and we pushed into each other totally lost in the moment and the turbulent emotions which were coursing through us. This kiss seemed to last for ever and I felt as if I were in a dark, warm sea, so safe and secure, in the arms of the boy I now knew I loved...and who, it appeared, rather liked me too.

We broke apart again, now panting for breath. My hands took on a life of their own, and without feeling either fear or self-consciousness, I reached to his crotch and felt his throbbing prick, imprisoned behind his clothing. I swear we both shuddered at that moment. This was awesome! I felt his hand return the compliment on my cock, the first time anyone had touched me there. I was in Heaven! We moved closer together and massaged our cocks together, our movements now almost totally out of control. This was too much, I was so close to creaming myself, it was almost painful. Hell, it WAS painful! I needed release. I needed to cum. I needed Pete and me to finish what we had started. It seemed Pete was of the same mind, he was groaning loudly and then I realised I was doing the same...groaning untintelligibly, reaching heights I had never been to before. So close...so close.

My legs were shaking uncontrollably. We were literally holding each other upright. We were in the grip of something so much stronger than ourselves. So much more powerful than either of us had ever felt in our lives. We didn't know what we were doing, what we could do, that would come later, but it felt so right. In our mindless frenzy, we both sank to the floor, pressed together rubbing our bodies together, gripping each other with an almost frenzied tightness, our cocks cramped, but straining away, until suddenly, before either of us could do anything, we came, at exactly the same time, shouting as our cocks exploded and the hot juices spurted from our throbbing members, soaking our underwear in a flood of joyous release.

It was the most intense feeling I had ever experienced. I would never forget it. Even though Pete and I were to have many more orgasms together, this had to be the most violent, the most cosmic. Pure ecstasy.

We lay there, chests heaving, as we gradually came down from our high. My cock and balls were soaked in jism, and I was sure my trousers had got well and truly creamed, but at that moment I didn't give a fuck. My wildest dream had come true and I wanted to savour the moment. I hoped this wasn't a dream too. We lay there, on the floor for what seemed hours, each of us taking in what had happened.

Gradually, we both surfaced and lying there on the floor, twisted between the desk and the chair, we turned to each other and gazed into each other's eyes. I was not surprised to see tears in Pete's eyes, mine were watery too. It was as though everything I had experienced had been leading up to this moment; my short life a prelude to this, the most amazing secrets of the universe seemed to have become clear in those few minutes we had loved wildly, uncontrollably. The course of my life had, I thought, been set. Lucky for me I was not a fortune-teller, otherwise I would have recoiled from what was to come. But that was the future, this was now and the now filled my existence.

We smiled at each other, as our breathing relaxed. I reached over and wiped the tears from Pete's eyes, stroking those smooth cheeks, a finger running over his lps, still parted, his long eyelashes fluttering slightly over those dark pools of deep chestnut brown. Pete was the first to speak.

- Oh my God! Oh Jeez, Fuck!....Oh wow!

Not very articulate, but I knew what he meant. We smiled and yet again our lips met, this time in the most tender of meetings, almost chaste we sought comfort and drew love from each other's breathing. Gentle, light kisses, hundreds of them, it seemed to me. We couldn't get enough of them.

That was Pete's and my first time. It was my first time with anyone. We became inseparable, "best friends" to the outside world, lovers between ourselves. We learned so much from each other, the giving and receiving of our innermost selves.

It would last a year.

One day Pete 'phoned me, his voice quavering with emotion. He told me his father had been promoted and was to take over the Asian offices of his company, based in Hong Kong. He and his family would be leaving in a month's time. Period. No discussion. Our lives collapsed, as we both realised that soon we would be apart, for a very long time, if not for ever. We couldn't bear to contemplate that our Paradise year was to be so cruelly ended. We made love even more often, if that was possible, with a renewed frenzy born of frustration and helplessness. We swore to keep in touch, we promised never to forget each other. We made all sorts of wild plans to travel halfway across the globe to meet, but we both knew that whatever we said, this chapter in our lives was closing, and the pages were turning. Fate had already decided what was in store for me, had I but known.

I still think of my beautiful, wonderful Pete and hope he is well, safe and happy. Above all, that he has found someone to love him. He had so much love in him, that if he didn't have someone to share it with, I am sure he would burst. For my part, I withdrew back into my shell. I studied even harder, became a loner. So it was until that fateful day when the storm ripped up the tree my parents just happened to be driving past. Now I really was alone. Aged 20, wealthy now, but so poor in other ways. And the cancerous growth began its slow, silent invasion.

So. There it is, my miserable existence, which for a brief moment flamed into a glorious high noon of passion with Pete. Then, the grey, bleak years of loneliness. My parents' death and just to cap it all, an unjust God made me a host to another life, a greedy rapacious growth, eager to devour me before I got too old.

Enough of this. I know what I must do. So much organising. Letters to write. Get my few affairs in order, so this mortal coil can be shuffled off with some decorum.

The sun is shining brilliantly outside, the world is turning in mazes of heat and sound. Tomorrow, Iceland and a new journey to be undertaken.

June 19

Uneventful journey to Iceland. One thing struck me however. I asked the person seated next to me, an Icelander who had chatted briefly to me during the flight what the stewardess said in Icelandic when we landed.

- Oh that, he replied. They always say welcome home when we land in Iceland again. Icelanders are so few, everyone knows everybody else, or are at least distantly related, it's like one big family, so when we get back, they say welcome home.

Home. It seemed so apt, somehow. Home. Yes, perhaps I was going home.

Through the formalities at customs. Through immigration. Then into the unknown. I looked over the small crowd of people who had come to meet the 'plane; a lot of happy reunions, hugs and kisses and a babble of incomprehensible Icelandic. I scanned the crowd, seeing the smiling, happy people who had come home. The bus was waiting outside the terminal. Although the sky was clear and the sun shone brightly overhead, it was a lot cooler and a fresh breeze nipped my face. The bus drove through lava fields which looked positively lunar, as we made our way towards Reykjavik. I disembarked at the town terminal and looked about me for a sign of my guide.

Then I saw him.

He had a card in his hand with my name printed on it in large letters. He stood near the barrier, ash-blonde hair, ruddy cheeks, grey eyes. He was the epitome of Nordic health...and beauty. His open face looked so calm, so strong. He was tall and well built and dressed in the traditional Icelandic woollen sweater, the lopi, in natural colours and tight riding breeches. What a wonderful Viking! Next to him I must have looked like death warmed up, which I suppose I was. I went over to him and introduced myself. His face broke into a wonderful warm smile, which showed his perfect white teeth behind the rosy lips. This guy is so hot! My cock immediately registered that fact. Not only was he the most perfect specimen of young manhood I think I had ever seen, it felt, for an instant, that we knew each other. Our eyes met and I was convinced I saw a flash of recognition in those grey eyes.

- Welcome to Iceland, he said. You have brought the good weather with you. It has been very wet and windy until today. You are the only person who has signed up for this trip, but that is okay, because as it is so new, it will be good for me not to have too many people, while I am learning the ropes!

I smiled back, his infectious laugh seemed so natural. I thought that people from northern countries were supposed to be dour and introvert, but not this wonderful young man. As I continued to look at him, the thought that I recognised him returned, but how was that possible? He seemed vaguely familiar all the same.

He took my bag from me and hefted it into the back of a landrover and we set off.

- Is this your first time here? he asked as we drove off.

- Yes. It was really a spur-of-the-moment decision, I said.

- Well I hope you enjoy it. It will be somewhat primitive, but as it will only be us two, we will have more room and there won't be any need to rush. Have you ridden before?

I had to admit that I hadn't.

- No matter. Icelandic horses are very friendly and easy to ride. You might be a bit sore "down there", he indicated somewhere between his legs, and as I glanced, I couldn't help but notice a very nice package encased in his tight breeches. - but that will go in a couple of days. We'll just take it slowly to begin with.

He grinned at me, and I thought that I detected an extra sparkle in those grey eyes.

- You speak very good English, I said, more to keep the conversation going than anything else.

- Thank you. I stayed for a year with an English family as an exchange student. I like England. It is so much more open than here, easier to be yourself.

I wasn't quite sure what he meant, but nodded assent. - Yes, of course there are so many more people in England, one can lose oneself in the crowd.

- Yes. In Iceland, we are so few, everyone seems to have their noses in everyone else's business. It can be a bit difficult sometimes. That's why I like trekking. I can be on my own.

We continued chatting as we drove out of Reykjavik towards our starting-point, about 45 kilometres out of town.

I was intrigued by this young man. He seemed so open, so sincere. He is 19 and will be finishing college next spring. He wants to go abroad to study, but is not quite sure what. Perhaps be a vet. I felt totally relaxed in his company. There was no awkwardness in his manner and I thought to myself someone good-looking was a definite bonus, a Viking god to be with... before it all ended.

His name is Oli, short for Olafur. I couldn't even begin to pronounce his last name, something "son". Most Icelandic surnames end in "son" or "dottir" a patronymic system, which means everyone is on first-name terms with everyone else,

- Oli will do, he laughed, as I tried to get my tongue round his last name.

- Stephen Roberts, I said. Call me Steve.

Blessadur, Steve, he said in a mock-formal way, his eyes twinkling again. - We always bless each other when we greet one another and when we part.

- That's a very beautiful custom, I replied.

- I suppose it's so the trolls and the Hidden People can't get their hands on us he said. He chuckled. - Many strange things in our stories: people whisked away by the elves, it's better to be blessed.

I looked again at this young man and just for a moment, it seemed as if a shadow crossed his otherwise fair countenance.

We arrived at our base camp shortly after and the rest of the day was spent in me trying to get to grips with the horse. Icelandic horses are what we would call ponies, but are very durable and extremely easy to handle. Oli had not exaggerated that. I found myself, after the initial few minutes, totally at ease, knowing that my horse would care for me. It was as though she knew she had a novice on her back, and was going to take extra care of me.

- Your horse is called Dimma, said Oli. It means Dark One.

She certainly was a beautiful dark chestnut and suddenly, looking at her, an image of Pete's eyes flashed across my brain. I felt a wrench in my heart and before I could stop myself, the tears welled up in my own eyes.

Oli looked at me with concern. - Steve, is everything okay?

I nodded, the moment passed. - Just the wind in my eyes, Oli.

It was time for our evening meal. The stables were attached to a stud farm, which it transpired was owned by Oli's father.

- Come and meet my parents, he said, and we went into the farmhouse for dinner.

- Make the most of your last night of luxury and good food for a week, said Oli with a broad beaming smile. - Tomorrow we'll be on our own and you'll have to put up with my terrible cooking! I laughed as I replied that I was used to my own terrible attempts at cooking, that his couldn't possibly be worse than mine. - Wait and see, before you say that he said, and laughed. I couldn't help but join in his laughter. I felt so at ease here. For a short while, I forgot my own fate, as I chatted with Oli and his parents and Oli's twin sister, Disa, with whom he seemed to be very close.

Disa was the feminine version of Oli's beauty. I could appreciate her fine features, the hair so blonde it was almost white and the same grey eyes, serious and humorous by turns. Oli and she had a special bond, that was obvious. I suppose it was being twins.

- I tell Disa everything, laughed Oli. - She is always so practical. Always gives me very good advice, which I listen to.

- Well, you men are always so helpless, she said, as she turned to me fixing me with her candid eyes. - But I think there is inner strength in everyone. You just need to dig deep enough.

I felt very slightly uncomfortable under that penetrating gaze and blushed, averting my eyes.

- Anyway, Oli, promise to call me every day on your mobile.If you get lost in the mountains, I will have to talk to the little people to save you. She laughed and the spell was broken.

Shortly after, pleading tiredness after the long day I was shown to the guestroom.

Oli showed me where everything was and then, as he left he turned.

- Goodnight Steve, I hope you sleep well. We have a long day ahead of us tomorrow. I am looking forward to it. You must tell me all about yourself, it will be fun to get to know you. Goodnight.

- 'night Oli. Thanks for everything. Yes, I am looking forward to tomorrow.

As he closed the door, I thought about what had happened in the last 24 hours, and especially about Oli. He was hot in that cool Nordic way. He seemed so genuine, so straightforward, and yet, sometimes, behind those grey eyes, I thought I detected something else, but couldn't pinpoint what it was.

I wrote my diary and went to bed.

For the first time in a very long time, I slept an untroubled, dreamless sleep.


June 20

I woke not immediately recognizing where I was. Looking around the small cheerful room bathed in sunlight, I was suddenly transported back to my childhood, when I used to stay on my grandparents' farm. It was so quiet, the sun was streaming in through the window. It being June, it hadn't properly set at all, 24 hours daylight. Had I not been so tired yesterday, it would probably have kept me awake all night. From my warm bed under the goosedown duvet I lay and thought of my grandparents and parents, now all dead.

When I had been looking for answers after my parents' death, I read all sorts of stuff on the afterlife and reincarnation and all that stuff. I guess it was it was so hard to let go. Anyway, someone I knew who was into all that stuff told me she could see my mother in the same room as me, sort of looking out for me. She claimed to have "the gift" or whatever. She said my mother was my guardian angel. Some guardian angel in the light of what was to come! Why couldn't she have protected me from this cancer then? If these angels had some sort of cosmic power, then surely it would have been possible? I decided that my friend was seeing things that weren't there, and probably trying in her own way to comfort me.

My thoughts drifted on, aimlessly. I was no longer angry that I had such a short time left; I was more sad, that I would be leaving this all behind. The anger had been awful. I had raged and lashed out ay everyone around me. I must have hurt a lot of people who were only trying to help. But in the final analysis, I had to come round and accept it. I don't have any faith in particular, I just know there has to be something else, after this tiny existence. What it is, I don't know. Anyway, I´ll soon be finding that out for myself. It's not that I'm not frightened. I am, but I know it is inevitable, in my case death will come sooner rather than later. I just wish sometimes that my life would have left a mark somewhere. That's why I'm writing this diary. "Diary of a Nobody"!

Gradually, I heard stirrings in the rest of the house and a light tap on my door. Oli poked his head round.

- Hi Steve! It's a lovely day! Rise and shine, we have lots to organize before we can set off. How did you sleep? Not too bright for you?

- No, I replied. I was so tired I was out like a light. What time is it anyway?

- 7:30. You know where the shower is. Breakfast in half an hour.

He left, leaving an air of freshness in the room. He really is very good looking. If only...

My thoughts centered on Oli, his white-blonde hair, those remarkable eyes. He had a lovely physique, and as I contemplated what he would look like minus the clothes, I gently stroked my morning-hard cock. I began to undress Oli in my mind, slowly and gently: Shoes, socks, lovely toes! T-shirt, oh those pecs! Pale golden skin, nipples like dark crimson rosebuds; the hint of a six-pack, a trail of almost invisible blonde hairs leading down through the waistband of his riding breeches. Undo the button, now the fly. Lingering over the prominent bulge, which grows as I gently ease his trousers down, over the firm butt, his strong legs covered in the same downy hairs. Those calves, ankles, mmm.

Then, looking up at him his grey eyes burning with desire, as I bury my head in his package, straining against his white briefs, a damp spot growing over the bulge. Against my cheek I feel his steely hardness, it's throbbing heat, as he pushes himself towards me. I open my mouth to suck at the wet spot and his cockhead through the snow-white material. Slowly, ever so slowly, I tease his briefs down, using my teeth. Oli is in a frenzy now. I can feel his knees trembling, as he reaches down to steady himself with his hands on my shoulders. He is calling out something unintelligible, I presume Icelandic, and as his glorious rigid rock hard member is released from the confines of his briefs, rearing up to meet his stomach, the glans flared out from under his foreskin, red, raging, glistening with precum, standing proudly erect, I reach my own tremendous climax, spurting stream after stream of molten cum on to my chest and belly.

The room is still quiet, save for my ragged breathing. The sun is still streaming through the window. I am lying on top of the bed, covered in my seed. I slowly come down from my post-orgasmic high. My fingers gently trace my cum in patterns over my torso, I taste myself, slowly at first, then more greedily, as I scoop the cooling milky essence in to my mouth. I am still thinking of Oli as I take my shower, washing the remaining dried cum from my body.

Time for breakfast. "Second breakfast" as the hobbits would say, as I grin to myself on the way downstairs. First breakfast had been good and nourishing; pure protein in fact! I was still smiling to myself when I opened the door to the kitchen and greeted the family seated at the table. Oli and Disa were in deep conversation and looked towards me as I entered. Two pairs of those sea-grey eyes gazed at me. One pair seemed cool, appraising, the other pair flickered up and down and hastily away again. All this in a fraction of a second. Wow, I really was seeing things clearly today!

A good breakfast was laid on, as we would not be eating again for several hours. Icelandic "hafragraut" which is porridge, freshly baked bread, with a choice of cheeses, herring, and gallons of strong black coffee.

Oli was telling me about the first day's itinerary, how we would take things fairly slowly to begin with, so that I wouldn't be too saddle-sore. An image of Oli's package flashed through my mind as I remembered our conversation in the car yesterday. I glanced at him and he sort of half grinned. Surely he wasn't thinking that too?

After breakfast, we began to organise ourselves. We packed what we would need into saddlebags which would make up the third pony's burden, looked at the map, our heads close together as Oli pointed out our trail to me. I could smell his freshness, a clean, honest smell, a mixture of soapy smells and the hint of the coffee on our breath. Oli's pale hair, and my dark head, making a dramatic contrast to anyone who might be observing us. In fact, we were being observed. I looked up to see Disa looking at us, a slightly worried frown clouding her otherwise sunny features.

- You will be okay, little brother? she asked.

Little brother! Oli was far from little, but Disa was the elder of the twins by a few minutes, and the term of endearment struck me. It was obvious she really cared for her brother, almost in a protective way. They were very close, these twins, a feeling I had never known.

- Of course I will, he replied. - We'll be fine. We'll take it slowly. It'll be fun.

Eventually, we were ready to set off. We saddled up and amidst fond farewells from this kind family, we began to ride out of the stable yard. As we reached the gate, Disa ran out of the house, calling to Oli:

- Hey little brother, you nearly forgot this! She ran up and handed Oli a mobile phone. - Where would you be without me eh? You'd forget your head if it wasn't screwed on!

Oli blushed and took the phone.

- Thanks big sis.

- You call me now. Every day. That's an order, little brother!

- It's only a few days, and I've been over this trail a hundred times, he half protested. - Okay, okay, I'll call, he added hurriedly as Disa playfully swiped at him. He looked sheepishly at me, rolling his eyes as if to say "sisters!". I smiled back at him.

Then we really were on our way. We took a gentle pace and as we went, Oli pointed out the scenery around us, what each mountain or fell was called, a bit of the history of the place, all mentioned in the Icelandic Sagas, stories of family feuds, revenge and quite a lot of killing. These old Icelanders sure were a bloodthirsty lot!

The weather was still and bright. Oli said it was unusual to have many days in a row of good weather, there was usually rain not too far away, but the forecast for the next few days was good, so we should have some good views.

I looked now and again at Oli as he talked. He was certainly one of "Nature's Children". It was obvious he loved the outdoors, he loved his country and had a vast amount of knowledge. I sat astride my pony and listened to his lilting voice as he spoke. Occasionally, we would stop, and once or twice he took my arm, to point out a mountain or a valley or stunning skyscape. As I watched him, sitting easily on his pony, taking in the view, I realised that the photograph in the ad I had seen in the travel agent's was of Oli, a few years younger, but him all the same.

- Is that a picture of you in the ad? I asked.

- Yes, we thought we needed some sort of picture to encourage people to come, he said. I knew he meant the stunning view of the mountains and glacier, but what had drawn me just as much was the golden-haired youth, astride his pony. I didn't tell him that!

- Well, it certainly worked for me! I said. It sounded ambiguous, and I knew it. Oli just grinned at me:

- The power of advertising!

- Find yourself in Iceland, I quoted. Good title. Did you think that one up?

- Yes, I thought it fitted. This is a great way to find yourself, if you're troubled. He stopped. It seemed as if he had caught himself saying too much. He bit his lip.

- I can believe it, I replied. - These stunning views, the emptiness.

- It's empty, but not lonely, if you see what I mean, said Oli. There's life all around us, the birds, the vegetation, the rivers. Even the rocks are alive.

I glanced at him. He was being perfectly serious.

- In Iceland, we believe that the Hidden People, or elves, live in the rocks. They have their own halls and cities and in the old days, people believed they lured mortals away to their hidden world. But that's just folklore, probably to explain why people went missing. It is very easy to get lost in this country, he added. Particularly if the weather suddenly changes and a fog comes down. Even in the summer. It's not possible to do this trip in the winter. But we're fine, we have a map and a cellphone, so we should survive. He smiled his infectious grin and we both laughed.

We stopped for lunch by a racing stream. The water chattered and churned over rocks. We had a packed lunch and Oli knelt at the stream to drink. I watched as he bent over, his tight riding breeches hugging his firm butt. I felt a stirring in my loins.

- Come and drink, he urged. - The water in all Iceland's streams and rivers is so clean and pure, you can drink it straight out of the ground. We don't need to purify our domestic water, not even in the city. - Pure and untreated. Oli was beginning to sound like an advertisement for Iceland!

- Sure you're not paid by the Icelandic Tourist board? I joked as I knelt beside him and bent to taste the water. It was icy cold, it took my breath away. I recoiled with the shock and almost lost my balance. Oli immediately reached out and put an arm around me, to steady me. Purely an instinctive reaction, but in that moment, I felt his strength and a jolt like an electric shock seemed to pass through my body, just as powerful as the shock the water had given me. I regained my composure, Oli's arm was still about my shoulders.

- You okay? he asked, a concerned look clouding his usually sunny brow.

- Oof! that's cold! I said. I made no attempt to move away from him, and Oli in fact held on to me for longer than was strictly necessary. Who was I to complain? This hunk of Icelandic youth could hold me as long as he liked, I thought.

- I forgot to warn you, he said. - This water comes straight from the snow on the mountains, it's melt water.

- Refreshing! I joked as his hold on me slowly relaxed. We both went quiet, staring into the rushing water.

- Let's have a rest here, said Oli. - We're in no rush and this is a good sheltered spot. Might even catch some rays!

- What? Sunbathing in Iceland? This was a new one on me. Although the sun was strong, it sure wasn't as hot as I would have expected.

Oli laughed. - In Iceland, this is the equivalent of a heat wave, he said. - We don't get that much sun, we grab every opportunity whenever it shines! With that, he removed his sweater and T-shirt. My mind went back to my morning jerkoff session. Here was the object of my desire stripping off in front of me! I was hard in no time as I beheld his lithe youthful torso. My imaginings from the morning were not far from reality. His broad shoulders, delicious collarbone, broad chest, with the lovely hollow at the sternum, nut-brown nipples, now erect in the coolish air and the downy pale hairs disappearing into his breeches...

Oli was totally unselfconscious as he pulled his clothes off. Like a young colt, his fair hair glinting in the sun, his pale skin with it's light honey colour had me transfixed.

- Come on! He said. It's not that cold. We can sit against these rocks. They'll be warm from the sun.

I pulled off my jersey and thick shirt. I obviously felt the cold more than Oli. I must have looked a fairly pathetic specimen next to his healthy appearance. I had never been over-fond of my body. I hadn't even really believed it when Pete said I was beautiful. I sat with my back to the rock, next to Oli. He was right, it wasn't as cold as I thought it would be. In fact it was very comfortable. Sunbathing in Iceland!! He looked over at me and said;

- You need more sun on that body of yours. Very health-giving, is the sun, he went on; - vitamin D or something or is it E?

We sat there, gazing out over the view of the plain, the mountains hazy-blue in the distance, one snow-capped one rising higher than the others.

- That's Hekla, said Oli, following my gaze. It's an active volcano, and in the old days we called it the gateway to Hell. She still erupts now and again. He must have seen my questioning look. - Icelanders give most volcanoes female names. Must be because they erupt suddenly without warning. We both laughed at that. But today, there was no sign that this mountain had ever heaved, roared and spewed. It stood there, proud and majestically aloof, the snow wrapped around her shoulders like a shawl.

It was incredibly quiet and still. The odd cry of birds reached our ears and the occasional bee buzzed by on it's errands.

- This is so peaceful, I murmured, more to myself. I feel so...so at one with Nature here. It's like I'm a part of this. Something that belongs...

I couldn't really express my thoughts too well, but Oli, his voice hardly above a murmur, as if we were in a church or something replied;

- Exactly what I think. This is my place, my spiritual home. I think that's why most Icelanders, however far they travel throughout their lives, always come home, home to Iceland.

I remembered how the stewardess on the plane had said "welcome home" and thought I knew exactly what Oli was saying.

My head nodded, and in that vast openness, which was at the same time so warm and intimate, like a mother's hug, I dozed off.

Sitting with my back against a warm mossy rock, next to a Viking god, stripped to the waist and sunbathing in Iceland! I would never have believed it even a week ago! My head drooped, I was really very tired, not just the trip and the new experiences, not to mention saddle sore, but my body was slowly losing its strength, being sapped up by the insidious growth which I knew was consuming me, bit by bit. I must have done more than dozed, because the next thing I remember, was waking up from a pleasant dream, in which Oli figured largely. As my eyes gradually opened, I heard a soft singing in my ear. A gentle, sad melody. I felt the bass notes vibrate through my being and realised with a start, that my head was resting on Oli's shoulder! I snapped awake and sat up straight, moving my head from it's golden pillow.

- Hush now. Take it easy. You've been asleep. Oli's voice, soothing in my ear.

- You should have woken me up. I'm sorry about that...I...I...

-No problem, my friend, replied the young Icelander.

- What was that sad song you were humming just now? I asked.

- Sofdu unga astin min, replied the young man in his native tongue. - It means Sleep my belove---He suddenly stopped short, and a blush crept up his already ruddy features.

- It's a children's lullaby, he ended lamely.

- Lovely tune, I said. - Very haunting.

- It's a very popular tune here, replied Oli. Our mother used to sing Disa and me to sleep with it. Happy memories, he added, but his face belied his words. There was a brief pause as the sun in his face was dimmed for a moment. Then he said:

- You're obviously very tired after your journey and the riding. It's my fault, I should have taken it more easily.

- No, really, I protested. - I'll be fine. Just a bit tired maybe, I said with what I hoped was not too weak a smile.

- You are maybe not very well? No?. Oli's concern showed in his worried expression and his less than hitherto perfect English.

- I'm fine, I lied. Just lack of vitamins or something. I'm a bit sore as well, I added ruefully. He glanced ever so quickly down to my crotch, I noticed, then replied: - I know the perfect cure for that! he exclaimed. You'll feel much better afterwards, he added with what looked like a sly grin, if Oli could ever be accused of being sly!

- I didn't know what he was talking about, all sorts of thoughts rushed through my mind, most of them less than pure.

- Fine. I said. Ready when you are!

- It's not very far from here, said my young guide. We'll be there in an hour maybe.

We stood up and stretched. I revelled in watching Oli's broad back and shoulders, his flexing shoulder blades and, as he stretched, honey-blonde tufts of hair under his arms. As he turned back, to face me I admired his well developed pecs and his flat stomach, showing youthful firmness. He did not have a body-builder's figure, but it was obvious he was in very good shape. His slim waist, sweet dimple of a navel and again, that mysterious downy trail I so longed to follow... He looked over at me and smilingly said;

- Well that's done you some good! You seem to have caught the sun!

I'm sure he was just saying that to make me feel good, I couldn't really see any change in my pallid skin. But I thanked him anyway as he stood there, continuing to look at me. Was there something extra behind the eyes I couldn't detect? I wasn't sure. I felt almost naked under his gaze, I felt as though he could see through me, read my thoughts even, and suddenly I felt flustered. My cock began stirring in my pants, so I hastily retrieved my shirt and jumper and dressed.

We mounted up again. Like my cock, my joints were stiffening up and it was quite painful to sit in the saddle, but I gritted my teeth and endured it. This was the least pain I was going to be feeling before very long, I thought grimly, as I followed behind Oli on the narrow trail between two slate grey mountains.

The valley opened up up before us and I suddenly realised what had been bothering me until now, without me being able to put my finger on it. There were no trees! None, anywhere. I mentioned this to Oli, who said that the original Viking settlers said the country was well wooded, but habitation had reduced the forests to nothing, then erosion and now the sheep, which roamed freely over the countryside.

- We have reforestation plans, he added, but I like it like this. You wouldn't have all these amazing views, if there were trees all over the place. I had to agree. The views were incredible; miles and miles. The clear air helped and mountains perhaps a hundred miles away were crisp and clear in the strong sunlight. We picked our way down the trail towards some strange rock formations poking up through the scrub on the valley floor.

- Lava, said Oli. - It gradually cooled into the most amazing shapes. It hollowed out tunnels and now we have one of the greatest natural resources in the world. He sounded proud, this young man who loved his mother country.

On our way down the trail, I had been noticing a far from pleasant smell, gradually getting stronger, as we descended. It was like rotten eggs. My nose wrinkled as I exclaimed,

- Eeew! What is that disgusting smell?

Oli laughed. - That's sulphur. We are close to hot springs and the smell is from the water. It's not so bad once you get used to it!

Now I could see wisps of steam rising from the ground.

- Take care, warned Oli, - the ground is full of hidden clefts. The ponies will take good care of you, he said, seeing my worried expression. - They have a sixth sense about these things, I think. He led me on, and we found ourselves on a trail between rock walls, gradually descending to about 70 feet or so. This had been totally invisible from the ground. Our ponies' hoofs clattered on the stones and echoed off the rock walls. Here it was cool and shaded. The smell was much stronger here, but I was getting used to it. Oli dismounted by a large cleft in the rock face. It turned out to be some sort of cave, and more steam was coming out of it.

- Our own personal hot-pot! Oli said.

I looked into the cave mouth. Natural rock stairs led down to a pool of hot water, which stretched back about twenty feet or so. It was very warm and steamy. I had never seen (or smelt) anything like it before.

- Rainwater from thousands of years ago, explained Oli, - heated by the lava beds underground, and gradually rising again to the surface, becoming cooler, so that by the time it gets to the surface, it is great to bathe in. Not many people know about this place. I used to come here a lot...he stopped, and turned his face from me. For an instant, I thought I saw an expression racked with pain. I just stood there, like an idiot. I felt I wanted to comfort this beautiful boy, but didn't know if I had read the signs right, and wasn't sure if it would be appropriate. We had only met yesterday. That's me all over, I suppose. Tight-assed! I can't get close to people. Not since Pete. More's the pity. Looking back, I am sure I turned a lot of people away with what appeared to be coldness, but in fact was just insecurity. Fear of rejection, I suppose.

The moment passed and Oli turned back to me, his face again calm.

- So! Shall we ease our aching muscles? he asked.

- I have no swimming gear with me, I said.

- Not necessary. Here in Iceland we just go into Nature as Nature intended. His play on words sounded so natural, I had to laugh. About halfway down the rock stairway was a wider ledge, where we stood, and for the second time that day, began to strip off. I could get used to this, I thought, as yet again, Oli's magnificent goldness was exposed. Now I would get the chance to see everything! I had to concentrate really hard so as not to have a full hardon, but even so, my cock was distending as I too began to undress. Oli had removed his top and now bent to pull off his riding boots.

- Could you give me a hand? he asked, sitting on the stairs. - Just give these a tug, will you?

I knelt at my Viking god's feet and grasped the leather boot. It came off easily enough, and I half wondered if this was a ploy on Oli's part. I had to grasp his calves to remove the boots, and felt their firmness under the cloth of the breeches. First the left foot, then the right, Oli waggling his toes with their release from their leather confines.

- Ahh, that's better, he sighed, his eyes half closed. He leant back on his elbows and I observed him from my kneeling position. My eyes travelled up to the bulge I could plainly see at his crotch. This boy was certainly well endowed! My own cock stirred and I hastily moved my gaze from the exciting mound in his pants and up the golden torso to the open, bright face. Oli was looking at me again, with an enigmatic half-grin on his face. Despite myself, I smiled back.

- Thanks, he said.- Now, let me do yours.

It was my turn to sit as he knelt at my feet. His grasp on my legs was firm as he teased the boots off. I decided to do the same as he had done; I leant back on my elbows, half-closing my eyes. I was deliberately flirting with this guy! I wondered if he would notice. My cock was still semi-hard under my jeans and I wondered if he would glance in that direction. Under my half-lowered lashes, I saw him look up, along the whole length of my body, and I am nearly sure his eyes lingered a little longer on my cock region, but I could not be sure. Our eyes met for a moment then suddenly he jumped up and shouted;

- Last one in's a kerling!

The Icelandic word must have meant something derogatory, and I was not going to let this wonderful sweet boy call me any names, even if I didn't understand them! This of course meant that we stripped off in no time, no lingering enigmatic looks, just a jumble of legs, socks and trousers and hurriedly abandoned underwear and then we were totally naked.

- Oli saw me pause.

- It's okay, he said. - It's hot water, but not too hot. Mind the rocks. You'll have to tread carefully.

I looked at him. His cock was thick, uncut, I'd guess about six or seven inches in it's flaccid state. His ballsac hung down behind, showing a pair of generous orbs, one lower than the other. They were probably the size of plums. The whole of this wonderful sight was framed in deliciously golden hair, darker than on his head, but still much paler than my hairs. I was mesmerized by the sight. His member was a slightly darker hue than his body and the foreskin was full, completely enclosing the hidden glans within. I gasped at his beauty, his utter perfection. I was so taken in with what I was seeing, I hardly noticed that Oli was also looking at me. I supposed it was only natural, men always check each other out, it doesn't necessarily mean they're gay...does it? Just making sure they don't lose out in a size contest, I suppose.

Compared to him, I must have been a pathetic sight. My illness was beginning to show in that I was underweight, and would soon be getting scrawnier, according to the prognosis. I have a reasonable cock, though not very thick and I suppose it is about six inches when not aroused. I am not circumcised, my parents decided when I was born, that that should be a decision for me when I reached the right age. I decided to keep everything I was born with! My hair is black and wiry and I think my balls are respectable. They do their job anyway, I always seem to have plenty of cum! Standing there in the dark, steamy cave, time seemed to stand still. But of course I know it was only a few seconds. Two young men, buck naked standing close together in the steamy warm dimness. The thought flitted through my mind it might be the scene from a porno movie. The moment passed and we both descended into the pool. Oli was quicker than I, he had the advantage, he knew the place. I went more gingerly, negotiating the slippery rocks.

- I won! said Oli triumphantly.

- Unfair, I retorted. - you know your way around. Anyway what does 'kerling' mean?

- Old woman, he said, a mischievous glint in his eyes. - But I see that you're no lady!

I had to laugh with him, as we immersed ourselves in the deliciously warm water.

- There's some higher rocks just here, he said, - we can sit and relax here.

I found the perch and we sat next to each other, the natural hot water lapping at our nipples, which were erect under the sensuous caress of the water.

- I forgive you, I laughingly replied. -Your certainly no lady yourself, I said without realizing I had said it. We looked at each other again and giggled like schoolgirls. I felt so relaxed here. It seemed such a natural thing to be doing, sitting in this dim cave, enjoying the sensations of the water lapping over our bodies. My manhood was enjoying itself too, beneath the surface, beginning to stretch one more time, as my balls hung lower in the heated pool.

We became silent. I was letting my mind drift and one more time, I closed my eyes, to appreciate the sensation even more. I felt Oli shift next to me, coming a little closer, it seemed to me. There was plenty of room, so it seemed sort of unnecessary, but I stayed where I was, feeling his warm skin make contact with mine. If he wanted to get closer, I sure wasn't going to stop him! But I couldn't make it too obvious. I just didn't know where was with this beautiful blonde boy. I had now got used to the strong smell, it didn't bother me any more and I gave myself up totally to the new sensations.

- You're not very well, are you? Oli said to me at last, speaking in his low, musical voice. - I can tell, but don't let me pry, he added quickly. - The hot water will wash all your pains away. Magic water!

I couldn't tell him that I was, indeed 'not very well', that was my own hideous secret, and it made me suddenly very sad that soon I would be getting worse, being eaten alive. It seemed to make this moment all the more precious.

- No, but I'll cope, I lied. - You're right, I added, to change the subject. - This is a wonderful thing to have, all this natural hot water. You must be a very healthy nation, you Icelanders.

- Yes, in some ways we are very tough, he replied, - though we are not as healthy as we should be...

He paused and again, I saw the flicker of pain cross his face. I let it drop. It was none of my business. If he wanted to tell me something, then it was up to him to decide.

We sat together, bodies touching, not needing to say anything. It was a companionable silence and a memory of me and Pete on a bus flashed into my mind's eye. I hope Pete is well.

After a good long soak, we decided we should perhaps leave the pool, before we became like two prunes. We clambered on to the ledge and sat together, letting the warm air dry us off. The water had relaxed me so completely, all the stiffness had gone from my joints.

As if reading my mind, Oli asked;

- Still saddle sore?

The question drew my gaze to between my legs. My cock was hanging, full and relaxed, the balls even lower in their sac than usual because of the heat.

- Yes, I think, I am fine down there, I said.

- It looks fine to me, said Oli. - I mean, no bruising or anything.

Again, the double-entendre caused him to become flustered, and I grinned.

- Yup, all well on that front, I said.

What was this boy doing? Did he know what he was saying? Was it just gaucheness, or was he flirting? I couldn't make up my mind. I decided not to go there. I could not be sure, and true to form, I wasn't going to go out on a limb. This will be yet another lost opportunity to add to all the other lost opportunities, I sighed to myself.

Oli seemed to become more distant and then businesslike as he stood and said we should be getting dressed and heading for the hut where we would be spending the night. The quiet, easy moment had passed. I felt suddenly deflated, like a punctured balloon. I got to my feet and we dressed in silence, the laughter seemed to have vanished with the steam through the cave entrance.

We rode on in the late afternoon sun along the valley floor, following a stream which meandered aimlessly through the bushes.

- This will soon become an enormous river and end in a mighty waterfall, said my guide. - That'll be our destination tomorrow.

We reached the mountain rescue hut and unpacked our things, saw to the horses and began to prepare our evening meal. Provisions had been left at the hut for us. It was a very small, basic hut, with a couple of primus stoves for cooking, a few beds and bunks, and some chairs. In front of the hut was a small platform made of timber and not far off, a stream for fresh water. The silence was profound. I felt like we were at the end of the world.

- We called this place "Heaven", said Oli.

- Really? I said. - You and???

The question hung between us.

- Me and a friend, he replied, softly. - A very close friend. I said nothing, thinking my own thoughts as Oli thought his.

We made ourselves comfortable and Oli said;

- I'm just going off to some higher ground, to get a signal, he indicated his mobile 'phone, - Got to let my big sis know I'm okay, he joked.

- Fine, I replied. - I'll just jot down my thoughts. I took out my diary.

- Okay then I'll be, back soon then he replied. - We'll eat and then I'll give you an Icelandic delicacy, he winked at me and was gone.

What on earth did this beautiful boy mean, 'Icelandic delicacy?' Did he realise what he was saying? Was he playing with me? I just didn't know.

I opened my battered diary, the leather cover bearing my initials, a present from my grandparents so many years ago, never used until now... I began to write.

***

Hi big sis

Hi little bro. How's things?

Okay, I suppose. I don't know where I stand. Sometimes I think he is like me, and we seem to get real close, then, suddenly, it's gone.

Come on Oli, you only met him yesterday. Give yourself time. Personally I think he's real cute, but my "gaydar" tells me I'd be wasting my time. When has big sis been wrong eh?

Yeah, but there's more. There's something big, something deep, hidden within him. I sometimes catch him looking so sad, like he's really hurting. I just want to reach out and hug him.

What happened today bro?

Well, I did like you suggested, we went to the hot pool. I haven't been there since, since...

Since Stefan and you went.

Yeah.

So, how was it? Anything happen?

Well, we seemed to be really close. He's such a hot guy, sis. You should see his..

. Come on Oli, I don't need to know you know!

Well, he is hot, and I've caught him sneaking glances at me. I try and encourage him. Anyway, I'm not selfconscious, as you know...

Don't need to tell me that little bro! You were always out of your clothes at the slightest opportunity as a kid. Real perv! Have you managed to have a serious talk with him, or are you just lusting after him?

I'm going to try this evening. I've got a bottle of booze. See if that helps...

You wicked man you! Where are you now?

On the hill by the hut.

Where is he?

He's down in the hut writing some sort of diary or something.

So we can talk freely?

He wouldn't understand us dimbo!

Oh, right. For a second, I was thinking it was Stefan...Are you getting over him bro?

I still think of him most of the time Dis, but it's getting better. Steve is so like him in many ways, he could almost be his brother.

The strong, silent type, you mean, bro. Don't worry, kiddo, you'll get over Stefan. Who knows, maybe this Steve will be good for you.

I'll never fully get over Stefan, Dis. You know that. Since he died...

I know, bro. It was awful. I loved him too, you know. I was so glad you two found each other...

I'll never know why he did what he did...

That's something only Stefan had to grapple with, Oli. It wasn't your fault. You mustn't keep blaming yourself.

Yeah, but if only...

No, Oli. No "if onlys." He did what he did because he saw no other way out. It was his depression, nothing to do with you. You were good for him. For a while, it looked like you had brought about his complete recovery. Not your fault.

Thanks, Dis. I know, but I miss him so much. But yesterday, when I met Steve, something seemed to click. I thought I saw Stefan again. Funny that they have such similar names.

There's a point to everything, Oli. Stefan was meant to do what he did, and you were meant to meet this Steve. But take it slowly. You can't just go hitting on any and every man you see!

Hey! That's not fair...

Only kidding, little bro. But, seriously, take it slowly. Try and draw him out. And don't rely on booze talking. It never works. Go easy Oli.

Okay, sis. I'd better be getting back. I don't want to waste the battery on the first call. I'll call you tomorrow. Okay? Okay, little bro. And Oli...

Yeah?

Good luck.

Thanks, sis. Bye

Bye.

***

I'm writing this in the early hours of the morning. The light is so bright, it's like day. I have to try and get my head round what's going on, or rather what I think is going on. I'm so confused. Part of me thinks that Oli is gay, but then something happens or something changes and the moment is gone. Is it me? Am I being dim? I so want to reach out and hold Oli, make love with him. I just can't seem to make the right moves, if I ever knew the right moves. Sometimes he seems so kind and caring and I have caught him looking at me like Pete used to...but there's nothing definite. I can't compromise myself, even though I know I might never see him again. I'm so screwed up. I am also almost continually hard...I need relief, but there's no privacy. We had a weird evening, at least it seemed to me.

Oli came back from making his phone call:

- Disa sends her love, he said.

- Thanks, I replied.

- Now, how about some food?

We both of us prepared a simple meal of packet soup , bread and then some delicious lamb chops. We didn't talk very much. Oli seemed sort of withdrawn and I was just enjoying watching him. The hut was cosy, and we had removed our thick sweaters, boots and breeches, and were in teeshirts and sweats. Oli's package kept drawing my gaze and I had to work real hard not to have a full-blown hardon. That would have been so obvious in my baggy sweats! He had a relaxed grace, his pecs visible through the white teeshirt which was stretched across his broad chest. He had firm biceps, and his forearms were covered in very blonde fine hairs, almost invisible. I noticed his hands. They are so strong and yet at the same time, slender and well looked after, the long fingers tapering towards well-kept nails. I imagined those hands all over me, exploring me completely.

So, the meal passed, me in my lustful reverie, Oli quiet and a little withdrawn. I wondered what he and his sister had talked about. Had he had some bad news? I didn't want to pry, so I remained silent.

We finished eating and washed up the few utensils. We went on to the platform in front of the house with some coffee and Oli disappeared back into the hut. I gazed out at the view. It really is stunning. I could understand why the place had been named "Heaven". I wouldn't mind spending an eternity here. The sun was gradually sinking towards the horizon, but it would not fully vanish from sight, at this time of the year. The sky was suffused in a rich glow with so many hues of red, more than I thought ever existed. I wished this moment would last for ever.

Oli came back out of the hut. He had a dark green bottle with a black label and two glasses.

- Brennivin. He said, answering my enquiring look. - We call it Black Death, he added and I could see the black label bore an image of a skull and crossbones.

- It's distilled from grain and an acquired taste. It's quite strong. He poured two shots.

- Go ahead, you have to drink the first one down in one, he said. He looked over the rim of his glass and said;

- Skal! and drained the glass off in one. I raised my glass to my lips. The smell wasn't too promising, but I decided to follow Oli's example and downed it in one. I choked as the fiery clear liquid burnt its way down my throat. My eyes watered and I coughed profusely. Oli laughed.

- The first is the worst! he rhymed and poured another two shots. I had to agree. I thought it was unpleasant, but I am not a great drinker, so am not used to it.

- Put this one into your coffee, said Oli. I followed his advice and then tasted my coffee. It was strange, but not unpleasant. Better than drinking it neat, anyway. I felt a warm glow in my stomach as the liquor coursed through me. I felt slightly lightheaded. If this was the effect of only one shot, then I had better take it easy. I didn't want to get paralytic. The thought crossed my mind that Oli was trying to get me drunk, but I dismissed it. It was just a hospitable thing to do. I mustn't read more into things than are actually there. We sat in the bright orange and red and crimson glow, Oli´s hair picked up the fiery light and glowed like a golden halo. God! he is beautiful! Oli looked over at me, his candid grey eyes caressing my face, or so I thought. He began to speak;

- I used to come here a lot. It's one of my favourite places on earth. We called it "Heaven" because it was here that I first found true love. I thought those days would never end, but things never work out the way you want them to. He paused.

I nodded agreement, not saying anything. I felt as though Oli was trying to say something more, and I didn't want to interrupt him.

- Have you ever had a real good close friend? Oli asked. Without waiting for a reply, he continued. - You know, the kind of person you know is the right one for you, like the missing part of you. I have a twin sister, who is part of me, but this is different. This is like something which one feels is meant to be.

I thought of Pete and silently agreed, not knowing where this conversation was going.

Oli went on;

- I had someone once, something special, but I lost it and until recently, thought I would never find it again...

I was looking at this sad young man, who was obviously trying to unburden himself to me, but couldn't seem to find the words. I knew exactly how he felt, but couldn't help him. I tried to look as understanding as possible and let him take his own time. Either he would say something I hoped and prayed to hear, or he wouldn't. It wasn't up to me. Silly bugger. I should have encouraged him there and then, but my inhibitions held me back. Damn! Damn! Damn!!!!

The silence grew longer and it seemed as though Oli was waiting either for a reaction or for me to speak. Neither happened. When I think about that now, in the early morning, I could kick myself for being so scared to take the plunge.

The fiery sky seemed to reflect the emotions raging in both our hearts.

It was totally silent and it seemed as if an invisible cloud of sadness descended around us. We drank our spiked coffee as we looked out over Heaven.

Eventually, it was Oli who broke the silence;

- Let's have one more, for a nightcap, he said, filling our glasses once more. I was too choked up to say anything and also not entirely sober. I had missed my moment, I felt and was regretting it unbearably.

I was thinking of my life up to that point, how it seemed to have brought me here for a purpose, and somehow, I had let myself down. I thought of Pete, my mother, my illness.

We finished our drinks and then got up, me rather unsteadily. Oli reached out to support me and at that moment, I would have willingly thrown myself into his arms, not caring about the consequences. It was so close, but yet again, that invisible hand stayed me, or so it seemed to me.

We went back into the hut and prepared ourselves for sleep. The beds were narrow, hard affairs. Comfort was not high on the list of priorities here. I went to the miniscule lavatory and as I stood waiting to piss, I cursed myself for my cowardice. I was so turned on by Oli, and I thought that he was trying to tell me something, and that I had let him down. I peed, gently massaging my cock as I thought of the sad, golden boy.

Our beds were fairly close together, separated by a small night table. I stripped down to my underwear and climbed into my sleeping-bag. Oli went about his business, I heard him peeing, an imagined his thick cock as it spurted his golden urine. I heard him brush his teeth, and thought of his ripe rosy mouth and perfect teeth. He came back into the room and undressed. His golden body lit by the sun outside. His perfect butt encased in the white briefs, his downy calves, strong thighs and that wonderful bulge where his cock now nestled. I was very hard as I gazed at him from half-closed eyes.

Oli climbed into his sleeping-bag and lay with his hands behind his head, gazing up at the ceiling. I watched him, that silky white-blonde hair. His strong jawline, his profile and that wonderful cleft between nose and mouth. My hand was on my cock, but I knew it would be impossible to take care of myself until he was asleep. I lay there, the precum oozing prodigiously from my cockhead, over my still fingers. I was aching with desire and regret. I saw Oli begin to turn his head to look towards me. I closed my eyes fully and lay there very still, hardly daring to breathe for fear of disclosing my emotions. Shortly after, I heard him sigh and roll over. I risked half opening my eyes. Oli was faced away from me.

Suddenly, I was no longer tired, or even drunk. I lay there, listening to his breathing become gradually more regular. I waited for a long time before I assumed he was asleep. I couldn't stay in bed. I very quietly got out of my sleeping-bag. I looked over at the sleeping form. No movement. I went closer and peered over to see his face. His long blonde lashes covered his eyes and his tousled hair flopped over his forehead. His mouth was slightly open and his breathing was slow and regular. What I would do to kiss that mouth! Smother that fresh face with a thousand kisses, lose myself in his golden beauty.

I felt myself leaning forward, closer to that cherubic face, so calm in its repose. There was a hint of down on the cheeks, not proper stubble, I don't expect he needs to shave so often. His eyes were moving under their closed lids, he was probably dreaming. I took in his firm, yet gentle jawline, his perfectly formed ear, his slim neck, and the hollow at its base, where I so longed to rest my head. I was intoxicated. This was more potent than the brennivin. I was so close, it would be so easy to plant a gentle kiss on his cheek...Time seemed to hold its breath as I was holding mine.

Then Oli shifted in his sleep. With the movement, I recoiled and the spell was broken. Picking up my diary, I went out on to the verandah. I stood outside gazing at nothing and everything at the same time. I heard the bark of a fox in the distance and the quiet chirp of a startled bird close by. I heard the stream in the distance, trickling over the pebbles. A light breeze rustled through the long grasses and high overhead, I saw an eagle soaring. I stood there, shivering in my underwear and wept. I wept until I thought my heart would burst. I wept about these simple things I would never see again, how this place would still be here, after I was gone, but I would never see it again. I wept, knowing that the world would continue to turn without me. I wept, knowing that I would never see Pete again. I wept because I felt I had let Oli down. I wept, and cursed God.

How long I stood there, I don't know, but gradually my sobs subsided, my heaving chest became more still as I began to think of my mother. I imagined her voice, comforting me, as she had done when I was a child and had hurt myself. Promising me that everything would be alright. Planting a kiss on me, stroking my tear-streaked face.

- Oh, mum, I whispered. - Why does this have to be like this? I wish it would all go away. I love him, and now I'm going to lose him. I've already lost him. I...

The stream continued to flow, the birds gradually woke up and the early morning light grew stronger. I sat at the table and wrote, then crept back to bed. Oli was lying facing my bed, but his eyes were closed. I was relieved I hadn't woken him up.

I fell into a fitful sleep.

***

Hi sis.

What time do you call this?

Yeah, and I know I phoned you last night, but I need to talk to you.

What's happened Oli? Is everything all right?

Yes...and no.

Did you and Steve...?

No, not what you think... I'm so unhappy.

Where is he?

He's still asleep.

Tell me about it, little bro.

It was so close, last night. I tried to talk to him about, about Stefan, but I couldn't get the words out. I thought he would say something, but he was just silent. I wish I knew what he was thinking. Perhaps he's just straight, and I've fallen in love with the wrong guy. Yes, I think I have fallen in love, sis. He seems to be what Stefan would have been, had he... had he lived. It was such a beautiful evening, everything should have been alright, but it wasn't.

Give it time, bro. Don't get all worked up. Just be yourself. He will see the real you, if you just be the real you.

He got up in the middle of the night, sis, I heard him outside and he was crying his eyes out. I wish I had had the courage to get up and go to him, but it seemed to me he wanted to be alone. He came back in and wrote for ages in that diary of his. He's asleep now, but he is having bad dreams. He's in a bad place, sis, I can feel it.

All you can do is be there for him, Oli. Just let him take his own time. If he has something to say, as you think he does, then he will, but it must be his decision. You can't make anything happen.

'Spoze.

You'll be okay, little bro?

I'll try, but I am so in love with this guy. I'm sure he's the one for me...I can feel it. I just wish that we could...

Take it easy, Oli.

Yeah, I guess.

Oh, by the way, you won't have heard the weather forecast, they're expecting fog roundabout where you are, but it shouldn't last too long. Shame, 'cos it'll be just when you're at the falls, and you won't get the spectacular views. If you can, I would wait it out at the birdwatchers' hide, the forecasters say it should lift by this evening.

Okay, little sis, I will. And...Disa,

Yes?

....thanks for listening.

You take care now, Oli, and don't do anything you might regret.

K.

'Bye then little bro. Love you.

'Bye. Love you too


***


I am sitting here, alone. I am invisible. I am blind. The fog is all around me. I know I am close to the waterfall, I can hear it roaring away. I need to write what has happened, before I leave here. If you read this Oli, then please don't be angry with me. You must understand everything. I am so cold and tired, but I can feel some sort of warmth from inside. I feel as if the wheel has turned full circle. It's like I have accomplished some sort of task, which I didn't know I had to do, but now it is over, I feel that I can rest. I thought about my mother last night and she seemed to be so kind and caring. She is looking after me, I know it now. She's only a few steps away from me, if I reach out, I could touch her, feel her warmth, her hug, her kindness.

And you, Oli? I'm so glad I found you, so glad to have known you, however briefly. Our souls touched, I'm sure of that. But now it is over. My lease of life is too short. I won't be here in a few months, and you? You'll grow and find the person your soul craves. You will be fulfilled and you will bring happiness to someone. I am sure of that. As sure as I am that this waterfall will keep tumbling for eternity. Think kindly of me Oli, and try to forgive me.


June 21

I was awakened from my disturbed sleep by Oli bringing a mug of hot coffee to my bedside. I felt like I had hardly closed my eyes, and must have looked like a scarecrow. Oli perched on my bed, looked at me and asked;

- Everything alright, Steve? You seemed to have had a bad night.

- I hope I didn't disturb you, I replied - I just didn't feel tired at all, I lied.

He looked doubtfully at me, but seemed to accept my transparent lie. I had a headache and my mouth was like sandpaper. I gulped down the scalding coffee. Oli stayed seated on my bed.

- Good coffee, I said.

- Best in the world, he joked. He seemed about to say something else, but checked himself. This was getting to be a common occurrence. How much weren't we saying to each other? I couldn't work out his expression. If I only had the guts, I could have done something about it, but our friendship, or what I perceived as our friendship, was still too fragile, too new.

- They're forecasting fog later on, dammit, he said. - Just when we get to the place I really want you to see. But it is supposed to lift this evening, so if we're lucky, we'll get an amazing view on the longest day!

- So it is. It's the summer solstice, I said.

- The sun won't go down at all and it's the night when the young Icelandic girls go out and roll in the dew. They're supposed to be able to see who their boyfriends will be, said Oli, telling me the Icelandic folk tale.

-What about the boys? I couldn't help asking.

He looked at me, a little impishly, before answering;

- I expect they're too busy doing other things to worry about that codswallop, he replied mock seriously. - They're probably enjoying themselves together without the girls!

I loved his turn of phrase and then got the hidden meaning behind his words. Did Oli know what he was saying? Or was it innocent fun? Despite myself, I had to laugh. This boy is fantastic!

I think I'd better get up, I said. I need to take a leak.

Sure, said Oli, shifting himself off my sleeping-bag, but not getting to his feet.

I slid out of the bag. Oli was watching me. Not in any sort of lustful way, I noted, but just watching me, as I stood and stretched...more for his benefit, than mine, but hell, why not flirt a bit? I was still uncertain of his orientation, but there's nothing wrong with stretching now, is there?

My cock was slightly firmer than usual in my briefs, not a full hardon, but the need to pee was livening it up a bit! I couldn't watch Oli closely, but I'm sure he was watching my package and if his tongue didn't flick out of his mouth and moisten his ruby lips, just for an instant...or was it a trick of the light? I shivered and edged past him, his head was so close to my cock...All it needed was a small movement on his part, just a slight leaning, a reaching out for it to be accomplished, to change everything for ever...but no movement came, the brief moment passed and I went to the bathroom.

I ran the icy water into the sink, to cover the sounds of me hastily jerking off. I stood there, knowing that Oli was just on the other side of the flimsy partition. I beat my meat with a frenzy and within a very short time, my cum shot out all over the sink and mirror. I watched myself as I reached my climax. My legs trembled and I grasped the small sink for support. My mind screamed out Oli's name. The water rushed out of the faucet and washed my seed away. I came down from my high and cleaned up. Now I could take that piss and prepare myself to see my blonde god again.

Breakfast was ready when I emerged. I thought I must look guilty as sin. How come you can't see when someone has just jerked himself silly? Just as well really, I smiled to myself. Oli looked up at me and caught the expression. He smiled back. Did he know? Or was he just being his usual friendly self? I had no way of knowing.

We ate together and Oli showed me on the map where we were headed that day. It wasn't a long ride, so we could take it at a fairly leisurely pace.

- Who knows, he said, - perhaps the weather boys have got it wrong and we'll have a lovely day for it?

It certainly looked perfect outside, not a cloud in the sky.

My mind went back to my lonely vigil of the night before. I said nothing.

Oli glanced at me a few times, his expression one of worry and confusion, but he remained silent.

We packed up our things, cleaned up after us, saddled up, and then we were off. The track was wide enough for us to ride side by side, the pack-pony following behind on a trace. The valley we were in gradually opened out and the stream was by now a river and moving quite quickly. Overhead, geese and swans flew in their V-formations and countless other birds, which I couldn't name serenaded the summer's day with their songs and calls. It was perfect. I could see Oli was fully appreciating the sights and sounds of Nature all around us. This was his home, his natural habitat. His keen grey eyes saw things which he pointed out to me as we rode. He told me Icelandic folk tales, about trolls, who had been turned to stone, as we passed some strange gargoyle-like rock formations. His low musical voice blended so naturally with the rustle of the breeze in the bushes and the drone of the bees. It was like a lullaby.

I felt myself relaxing totally. My horse gently plodded on, needing no guidance from me, so I could give myself up totally to the sights and sounds and the gentle motion of the beast beneath me. That I should soon be leaving all this! That I would never see another sunrise! That I should leave the world behind! The thoughts chased themselves round and round in my head as we ambled on under the brilliant sun.

Gradually, almost imperceptibly, the light became more diffused. It was no longer so bright. We could now hear a distant rumble of the falls. A chill breeze got up and seemingly from nowhere, tongues of mist began to appear. We began to see swathes of cloud and fog rolling over the hilltops and soon, we saw a wall of fog rearing up before us.

- We're not far from a birdwatcher's hide, said Oli, pointing some way ahead. - We can hole up there and have some lunch and wait for the fog to lift.

We urged our ponies on and very soon, the mist enveloped us. At first it was thin and we could still see the watery sun overhead, but gradually, insidiously, like a cancer, I thought grimly, the fog deepened and became more and more impenetrable.

- Don't worry, said Oli, his shadowy form not far from me. - It's very close. I know exactly where we are. It's just a couple more minutes. The roar of the falls was much louder now, but in the fog, it was hard to say exactly how far away the sound was and where it was coming from. The world became dead and grey and cold. What a change from this morning!

Strange shapes reared out of the fog as we passed more pillars of rock.

- Here we are, came Oli's voice from the fog. We dismounted and tethered our ponies. The fog was now so intense, I could hardly see more than a couple of feet in any direction. I felt Oli's strong grasp as he guided me towards a makeshift shelter, a tarpaulin camouflaged with vegetation, the birdwatchers' hide. We raised the flap and crawled into the gloom.

- Not very comfortable, said Oli, as he struck a light to kindle the lantern he had with him. - We'll have to have a cold lunch, I can't really make a fire, everything's damp because of the fog.

- Fine by me, I replied. I was now very chilly, but had to put up with it. We brought our provisions into the hide, closed the flap and got ourselves as comfortable as we could on the hardened earth. We rolled out our sleeping bags to make it more cosy and began to make some sandwiches. Mercifully, Oli had made a flask of coffee before leaving Heaven, which he spiked with generous shots of brennivin. Gradually we became warmer.

- Nothing for it but to sit it out here, said Oli.

It was cramped in the hide, so we were very close together. The feeble glow from the lantern shone on Oli's hair and his grey eyes sparkled. I could look at this face for ever, I thought. We stretched out on the sleeping bags, the hot coffee and brennivin were doing their stuff and I began to feel more comfortable.

We were silent for a while, the roar of the falls a distant and constant backdrop to the intimate silence in the hide. Oli broke the silence:

- Steve, you remember what I said last night? About finding a friend and losing him?

I nodded. I did not point out that he said "him" now, but not last night. My heart quickened. Something had changed...

- Well, I feel as though I have found him again...

I gazed down into my coffee. I was trembling...my heart was thumping in my chest. How could Oli not hear it? This was a threshold...he had just admitted, twice, that his special friend was a "he". I held my breath, not looking at him.

- Steve...

At last, I looked up, looked into his open, honest face, his grey eyes glistening in the light from the lantern.

- Steve...I....it's,... it's you, Steve.

At that moment, everything suddenly crystallised. I gazed into his eyes. Our heads each moved, imperceptibly, edging towards one another. I took in his golden face, his ash-blonde hair, his grey eyes, ruby lips, parted...our heads continued their infinitesimally slow collision course. A pause, then we moved closer, until finally, gloriously, our lips met. How can I describe that meeting? It was like a butterfly's wing, so soft...a trembling fleeting brush charged with all the electricity in the world. Our mouths parted and met again, the lips opening as we reunited.

The butterfly's wing became an eagle's pinion, as we pressed our hungry mouths to each other. My soul soared with the eagle as our tongues met and intertwined and explored our warm wetness. I don't know what became of my coffee cup as my arm was flung behind his back and his round mine. We lay pressed together on the floor of the lonely birdwatcher's hide as our kisses became deeper, more urgent, intense. I was not capable of rational thought. We parted lips, gasping for breath, and gazed into each other's eyes.

This was no urgent, animal-like coupling. We lay next to each other, completely at peace, though my heart was still pounding in my chest. This felt so right, like a last piece of a jigsaw had finally fallen into place, revealing a complete picture. I somehow felt that this was meant to be, that destiny, fate, whatever you want to call it, had summoned me to this place.

- Find yourself in Iceland, I murmured, as I gently stroked Oli's cheek. He smiled at me, remembering the advertisement.

- Well, if you didn't find yourself, at least you found me, he whispered.

We kissed again, slowly, lazily, as if we had all the time in the world. Well Oli did. My time had been curtailed and I knew that soon it would no longer exist for me.

- Tell me about him, I murmured.

Oli kept his eyes on mine, as he breathed deeply.

- Stefan was the love of my life, he said, simply. - He was the Yang to my Ying. He made me whole. We met after I came back from my year in England. I had "found myself" there; it was in England I knew for sure I was gay - there I could be myself. I came back to Iceland, to the stifling community, and I knew I could not stay here for the rest of my life. I met Stefan at a student dance - neither of us had a date and we hung out together. We just clicked.

We spent that first night just talking and talking and I found I could tell him everything. He was very much like you, Steve; serious, introvert, caring. He had his own problems; an alcoholic mother, and a father who, when he was at home, abused him - mentally and...and the other way. Stefan had so many inner scars, when I look back on it, I am not surprised at what happened, but I should have seen it sooner, instead of being so wrapped up in myself. We were together for about a year - one year twenty-two days and six hours to be exact...

Oli stopped as a sob racked his frame. I hugged him close to me, murmuring into his ear, and gently kissing his tearstained face.

- I didn't see the signs, or didn't want to. Stefan became moodier...kept saying he wasn't good enough for me, that I deserved better. I tried to convince him...we did have a wonderful relationship, but he couldn't see it properly. He was hurting so much We used to go on trips together, the first time we made love was in the hot pool where you and I were yesterday...we named the hut Heaven...it was Paradise for us, but I was slowly losing him, Steve. Stefan would wander off and disappear for days at a time. I used to get frantic with worry, but he always came back, and everything seemed to be okay for a while. But all the time, he was losing himself in the dark pit of his sorrow. Disa tried to tell me, but I tried to ignore it. I said he was just moody and that it would pass. I wish I had listened...it's all my fault.

He broke down again, and I let him cry.

- It's not your fault, Oli, I said. - You couldn't have done anything about it. It's an illness, he needed expert care...

- I know, and I didn't give it to him, he cried.

I tried to soothe Oli, stroked his blonde hair, kissed his overflowing eyes, held him close.

- Then he disappeared, and didn't come back for a whole week. I was frantic, and so upset, we had a quarrel...not a full-blown row, but more than a lovers' tiff...I think I said things that hurt him...neither of us really meant what we were saying, but it was awful. I so wanted to protect him, but he wouldn't let me. He wouldn't let me talk him into counselling or anything. It was as if he was bent on self-destruction...

- He didn't leave a note, or anything. He phoned me one evening and we sort of made up and he said he was sorry, and it was all his fault and I said it was all my fault, you know. Anyway, I thought everything was fine again and that we would see each other the next day. He said he would call me in the morning...

- He hanged himself, Steve. His mother found him...I...it...it was awful...the funeral... I'm sure his drunken mother blamed me, she said some horrible things to me. Of course, his father didn't turn up for the funeral, he was off somewhere, probably in jail, I don't know or care, that bastard deserved to die, not my Stefan...

- That was a year ago. I will always remember him. And when I saw you, Steve, suddenly it was like meeting Stefan all over again...I don't know what it was, your looks, your manner...something, some invisible thread seemed to bind you to me and it felt like I had at last found him again.

I was silent, feeling so much for this poor distressed boy, my heart was brimming over with love. I wanted to give him everything, body and soul. Gradually Oli calmed down, as we lay there, in each other's arms. Outside, a gentle rain began to fall, drumming lightly on the canvas roof, the tattoo of droplets a counterpoint to the low rumble of the mighty waterfall.

- It's okay, Oli...get it out of your system. Let it all out. I'm here, I'm with you, I gently murmured.

After a while, his breathing relaxed and Oli became calmer. I wiped the last tears from his cheek and we kissed, a lover's kiss, an affirmation.

- What about you Steve? Oli asked. - You didn't just come to Iceland for a pony-trekking trip did you? Why did you come?

Oli was more perceptive than I had realised, or was I such a bad actor?

- Well, I replied, - the ad said "find yourself in Iceland", and I just found myself in Iceland! Oli was not convinced by my effort at a joke.

- Seriously, Steve. - Tell me, I'm listening.

I'm an only child, I started. - I had everything a boy wanted or needed. My parents didn't spoil me, but I did have a privileged life. But I was always alone. I found it hard to make friends. I wasn't the sporty type, I was a geek who played clarinet in the school band. But when I was fifteen, my life changed for ever. I knew I was different, but hadn't worked it out properly. I had crushes on other boys, on one boy in particular. Anyway, we ended up together, I couldn't believe my luck. I now had a word for it; I was - am - gay and Pete helped me come to terms with it. He was like your Stefan was for you, Oli, my other half, but he too left me. Not in the same way, but he left my life for ever. I lost my parents in a freak accident three years ago. I had no one and I just withdrew into my shell. It was then that I found out... I stopped.

- Tell me, whispered Oli, his lips brushing mine.

My mind went back to that day and I recited almost automatically;

- It was on June 3rd one year ago that I found out I had .... an illness, which...

- I felt Oli tense in my arms.

- What's the matter? I asked.

- Did you say the third?

- I'll never forget that date, I said, bitterly. - Nor I, whispered Oli. - It was the day that Stefan...that Stefan killed himself.

So...yet another piece fell into place. What a coincidence...or perhaps...?

We lay silently for a while, our hands gently caressing each other. I felt Oli's slim waist, his broad back and as I moved my hand lower, his firm buttocks. Oli had his hand behind my head and was stroking my hair. Curiously, there was no sexual urgency in the air...we were so caught up in each other, sex had receded into the background...for now

- What illness? asked Oli.

Even now, I couldn´t bring myself to name that "C"word to him.

- Oh, some sort of nervous thing. I was lying to my new-found lover. What kind of person am I?

- I've been told I'll get better, sooner or later. Another lie. Another stroke of the hammer.

Oli gazed at me with his penetrating grey eyes. - It's more than that, Steve, isn't it?

I very nearly blurted out the truth, but something held me back. This boy had been hurt too much. In my stupidity, I thought I was protecting him. If you ever read this, Oli, I am so very, very sorry. I need to bear this burden myself. I hope one day, you will understand.

I lied again. Another hammer blow in my heart.

We had been lying in the same position for a long while now and were beginning to feel slightly uncomfortable. We unclasped each other and Oli got to his knees. He was staring at me the whole time. I mirrored his action. The air was now charged with something else...we needed each other physically, we both felt the almost overwhelming need. The dim glow of the lantern shone on us as Oli put both hands on my shoulders and drew me to him. Our kiss was long and hard. Our tongues danced with each other as our lips mashed together. Breathing became difficult and just before both of us would surely die of lack of oxygen, we broke the kiss, gasping for air. I placed my hands on Oli's butt and drew him towards me. I felt his hardness against mine as we clasped each other tightly. I kneaded his two fleshy orbs beneath the riding breeches as Oli matched my movements with his.

Our cocks were grinding together, each straining within the tight confines of our clothing. We broke apart, I was sweating slightly and saw that my cool Nordic god was flushed like the sunset last night. His strong but delicate hands, which would one day cure sick animals reached to me, cradled my face as he kissed me again. Our lips were now swollen from kissing and my breathing was ragged. I reached over and began to tease Oli's teeshirt from his waistband. The back of my hand brushed against his warm skin and the downy hairs leading from his navel. Oli shivered perceptibly, we looked at each other and smiled. I saw the outline of his cock straining against his trousers. Like a caged animal, it was twitching to get out.

- Just a little longer, I teased gently to the organ, as I gently caressed it's outline. Oli practically screamed, but bit his lip.

I pulled his teeshirt over his head, admiring the perfectly formed chest and just loving the tufts of hair at his armpits. A light sheen of sweat glistened on his golden body, making Oli look like one of those bronze statues in the British Museum. My Adonis! He shook his hair and gazed at me, the bright eyes alive with pleasure, love and pure lust. He reached over, his downy arms stretched in the lantern light, gleaming. His hands began to undo the buttons of my shirt, one by one. He parted the material and those light fingers delicately stroked my nipples, making it my turn to groan with pleasure. He gently stroked his way all over my chest, down my arms, as the shirt came off. He pulled my hands to his lips and began to gently cover them with light kisses. He opened his eyes, and with a mischievous grin, reached towards my throbbing cock, trapped in my clothing:

- Just a little longer, he laughingly said, stroking my member. Now I knew how cruel I had been just before, and we both smiled at each other. We were kneeling, facing each other and now our naked chests met in an embrace so intense and so close, I could feel his heart pounding and he could certainly feel mine. We were as one, almost. I bent my head towards his neck and nestled there in the crook. I gently nibbled at his golden skin, the sweet scent of him filling my nostrils. I had my hands in his hair, teasing the silken golden strands, feeling their softness. His hands strayed up and down my back, conjuring up goosebumps, despite the heat in the small confined space. He gradually worked his way down to the waistband of my trousers...

How are we going to do this, kneeling down? he asked.

Good question, I murmured. We looked at each other's hardon so obvious behind the material.

- We need to act now, said Oli - before it's too late! I knew what he meant. I was so close to cumming, and we were only just beginning!

Lie down there, said Oli to me and as I complied, lying on my back he straddled me. He reached for the fastener on my trousers as I reached for his. A tiny struggle, and then undo the fly. I lifted my butt off the ground, to allow him to remove my pants completely, my hardened cock now leaking precum into my briefs. Oli gazed hungrily at the bulge, and licked his lips, giving me a wicked smile at the same time. God! He was such a tease, such a turn on!

I managed to somehow get his trousers undone and in order to get them off, Oli lay on top of me and wiggled his cute butt and pushed the trousers down with his feet. He was certainly no lightweight, but his cock grinding against mine took my mind off it. Oli rested on his elbows, lying above me, our noses touching, our cocks gently massaging one another. They were screaming for release. I reached down his back and grabbed the waistband of his briefs. Oli got the message and did the same for me. With a lot of wriggling and erotic massaging, at last our cocks were free, glistening wet, proudly throbbing and so close to Nirvana.

- One more thing, said Oli, still smiling. He raised himself up, and I could see the whole length of his glorious cock. My imaginings from my morning wank were not far from reality. His erect tool stood proudly, the purple glans fully exposed from beneath the generous foreskin, precum running down the veiny, throbbing shaft. It bent in towards his stomach, or rather lower chest. I saw the rhythm of his beating heart in this ecstatic vision of manhood. His balls hung low, covered in a downy fuzz. I made to reach out, but Oli moved away. He saw the look of frustration on my face, and smiled again. This boy was an expert cocktease!

- Socks. He said, simply, as he removed both his and mine. - I can't make love in socks for heaven's sake, how sordid!

He said it in a mock posh English accent as he rolled his eyes. I laughed with him. This boy is so sweet, so funny...He became more serious again, as he looked at me. My member was straining hard, I'm sure it hasn't been this big before! I lay on the sleeping bag in the semi-gloom of the birdwacher's hide, Oli, straddled himself over my thighs, his low balls brushing against mine. He was silhouetted against the low light of the lamp, the light from behind shining on his ash-blonde hair like a halo. His face was in darkness, but I could see his eyes, and when he smiled, his teeth shone pearly white. My cock twitched in time to my pounding heart, the clear, sweet precum pooling on my belly. Oli gently removed some of the liquid leaking from me.

His touch galvanised me. I felt a jolt go through my body at that touch. I know that sounds corny, like all the love stories one's ever read, but I swear it's true. His fingers went to his lips as he tasted my expectant juices. Slowly, oh so slowly, he licked each finger, his gaze never leaving mine, locked on to me like a laser. I reached out again. This time he did not move away, but leaned in closer, giving me access to the prize my fingers, no my whole being, so eagerly sought. Gently grasping the base of his pulsating member, I lightly stroked his hardness, revelling in the silky feel of his willing skin as it moved back and forth over the steely rod. My fingers lightly traced a path up to his cockhead, now swollen with desire and glistening with precum. I wanted to taste this beautiful boy. My now slick fingers came to my mouth, and I tasted his honey-sweet liquid, as he had tasted mine.

We were breathing harder now and Oli began to lean towards me, his fair halo of hair hanging over his forehead. Lower and lower he sank, his cock lay against mine and the two pulsing organs slid and slipped together, lubricated by a mixture of sweat and precum. Closer, closer came Oli's face to mine, our stomachs, then our chests united, his weight delicious on top of me. Lower and lower, his eyes constantly on mine, mine on his. Nothing else existed in the world save for our two bodies. A bead of sweat rolled off his face on to my lips and I licked the salty drop. Our mouths were open, our warm breath fanning each other's nostrils as he finally reached his goal and our lips met, our tongues exploring each other's mouth.

My hands clenched at his back, trying to pull him even closer, I wanted him inside me. I wanted us to be one. Our cocks, grinding together bringing me ever closer, closer to the edge, the edge I didn't want to ever go over, yet at the same time which I needed to go over. We broke our kiss and Oli slid off me, rolling to one side. I rolled on to one side too, and we lay facing each other, our foreheads touching, our noses, chests, cocks, knees and toes. I was so close to the edge of my desire, I could have screamed. I was aching for release, but at the same time I never wanted this to end. A hand stroked my face and I realised I had been crying, as Oli wiped away the tears.

An instant from all those years ago, with Pete flashed across my mind, but then I was back in the now with my soulmate. I knew it now. Oli and I had met not by accident, but by design. I was convinced. He stroked my face, my chest, my stomach. His mouth gently sucked at my nipples, I found his ear and nibbled there. His hand reached further down, his strong fingers oh so gently stroking, my balls rested in his palm. He moved his head lower and lower down my heaving chest, over my stomach and came to rest by my cock. I felt his hot breath on my cockhead. His golden hair splayed out over my stomach, my Viking god took my cock into his mouth, gently licking, sucking. The precum was streaming from me now, it was almost as intense as cumming, and I knew I could not stand his attentions for long.

- Oli, Oli.....ahhh, my sweet one, I groaned; - Please, please I'm so close....soooo close. Wait....wait.....

He lifted his head and released my cock from the warm wetness of his mouth. I didn't know whether I was laughing or crying. The feelings I was going through were so varied, so intense, it was like I was drunk. I stroked his blond head as it lay on my stomach. I wanted to both push it back on to my waiting cock and pull it away at the same time. The pleasure was almost unbearable. I gazed down at the blonde Viking, his slender neck, the round joint of his shoulder, his profile against the lantern. He went down on me again, and this time, I knew I wouldn't have the strength to move him away and that the inevitable would happen. His wetness engulfed my cock again, his tongue caressing my sensitive head, teasing more and more precum from me, he suckled on my cock like a baby at the breast. He moved lower, taking in more of my meat. I saw his cheeks hollow as he applied more suction. He caressed my balls, rolling them between his fingers, he stroked the hairs round my cock as he continued his gentle milking of my essence.

A hand went between my legs, stroking me. I eased my legs apart as Oli's probing, stroking fingers sought another goal. I felt him as his first finger found what he was seeking. Easing it into my clenching and unclenching aperture, he pushed, gently and firmly. Further, further, another finger joining in, stretching me, pushing against my prostate gland, massaging me from within, his fingers matching the rhythm of his moving head. Wave after wave of pleasure rolled over me, I was drowning in a thousand different sensations; in delirium, causing me to writhe in delicious agony under him, my legs thrashing, my hands grasping the cloth of the sleeping bag beneath me.

There was no going back now...I had started the journey towards orgasm and I could feel it's power begin to surge...I held on, held back...my legs lost their strength, my skin became covered in goosebumps, I grasped hard at the material, then reached for Oli's head...both to stop the agonising ecstasy and to urge it on. Oh, the great paradox of orgasm! Pain and pleasure, regret and joy, eternity in a moment, a moment in eternity! I couldn't hold myself back, the flood was approaching, the pressure was building, the floodgates gave way. I climaxed in a great rush of joy and an explosion of lights and colours, I heard someone screaming out, it was me....my rod erupted spurt after spurt of my creamy cum into the rosy depths of Oli's mouth.

He sucked even harder, pushing his fingers further into me then and I abandoned myself entirely to him as the thick essence streamed from me to him. How many times? How long did it go on? I don't know, but for me it seemed for ever. I felt faint, giddy, spent. My cock gradually gave up all its juices and Oli gradually relaxed his jaw. He gently licked at my glans, finding the last drops of cum. His fingers slowly retreated and exited, leaving me empty. His head lay on me, as I felt him catch his breath. I was utterly spent, I had been deliciously robbed of my essence, but gave it gladly. We lay for a while as I slowly came back to myself. My cock, previously so rampant, vibrant and thrusting gradually relaxed, lying across my thigh, Oli's breath fluttering over it, brushing it gently with his exhalations. My balls, which had withdrawn at the moment of my eruption began to descend again, drained of their love-juices. Oli's breath caressing them as they lay there.

- Oli... I croaked, my voice thick with emotion. - Oli, my Viking god, my beautiful angel...I want you in me, I want to feel you in me. Please, Oli, please make love to me. Give me life. It was a desperate prayer, but it came from the core of my being. - Make love to me, baby.

Oli raised his head, turned to look at me. I saw a drop or two of my cum at the corner of his mouth, the rest he had swallowed, taken into himself. He looked at me, his eyes with an expression of ... of what? I could see love there, certainly, but my desperate plea brought a slight frown to that bright open face.

- Are you sure, sweetie? he asked, - is that what you want? If I could give you life you know I would, but you are alive...so very much alive my beautiful one.

If only you knew, Oli. If only you knew what evil forces were inside of me, what pitiless cruelty was devouring me...

- Make love to me, Oli, I need you inside me. I need to feel your strength, to give me strength. I need to feel your love, to help me love. I need your...

- Shh..., he replied, placing a finger on my lips. It's what I want most in the world right now, my love. To make love to you, to be in you, to hold you and give myself to you.

He turned to face me, his cock still straight and hard.

- Let me.. I said, straining to raise myself under his body. He moved so that I could gain access to his rod with my mouth. I raised my mouth to meet his cock and gently licked at it, lubricating it with my saliva and his precum. I wanted this gift of his so much, something to take with me when...

I lay back, spreading and raising my legs, exposing the entrance to my inner self to him. He raised my legs on to his broad shoulders, and gently massaged me, slowly distending my passage to accommodate this willing guest.

He lowered himself towards me, his cock, rock hard, aimed at the rosebud of my love tunnel. I felt his firm head push at me, probing, begging access. I relaxed myself to let him in. I felt his cockhead gently but insistently begin its entry, slowly, oh so slowly, Oli expertly eased his way past my dilating ring of muscle, which grudgingly opened to admit him. His ramrod cock slick with juices began its journey towards its ultimate goal. I clenched and unclenched, as Oli paused. His cock was by now half way in and my willing hole was begging for more. I was hard again.

Oli looked down at me, his face transfigured with exertion, lust and love. Sweat gathered on his nose and dripped on to my already soaking body, pooling in the hollow of my chest. He began to slide in again, further and further until I felt his balls gently brush mine. We lay there, inert for a short while, like athletes gathering strength and then he began to move again, slowly, surely, gently at first, then stronger and longer strokes. He was panting hard and each time he reached the bottom of his stroke, his cockhead massaged my prostate, sending me into wild paroxysms. Forwards, backwards and forwards again, each time more purposeful, the rhythm becoming evenly faster and faster. Deeper and deeper, my own cock responded, the hardness like steel. It was by now an almost frenzied assault, as we both began the approach to the inevitable.

Oli was crying out in his own language, the sweat was pouring off his golden body, his blonde hair now dark. I was flailing about under him, pinned to the ground by his mighty shaft. I flung my arms about him and pulled him, urging him even further in, if that were possible. We were crying out in unison now until that great moment when our pent up passions were released in gout after gout of cum, his pulsing strongly into me, spurt after spurt filling me with his seed. Mine shot from me, the ropes of cum streaming across my chest and stomach. Oli's head was flung back, his eyes closed, his mouth open as he came in me. The veins in his neck stood out, his throat taut as he gave a massive cry and a final lunge as his cock continued pumping out its precious juice. I felt his warmth invade me, filling me. His cum lubricated his cock even more as he moved ever more gently within the tight confines.

His movements slowed and finally, all too soon, stopped. The arms he was resting on were trembling, his chest heaved and the sweat continued to course down his face on to me. I felt his hard member become still, with only a slight twitch now and again as I milked it for more of his cum. It was like the aftermath of an earthquake, literally. Our sweat covered bodies were trembling with the effort, we were panting for breath and it seemed, at least to me, that I was in a daze. Silence slowly returned to the dimly-lit shelter. Oli softened and his wonderful cock unwillingly left me. I felt empty, drained, yet I was full of his cum. Oli eased my legs down and gently lay on top of me. Our wet bodies slipped and slithered together, out hearts beating wildly, like crazy percussion. Gradually the rhythm slowed and returned to a normal pace.

Oli had his mouth at my neck, gently biting, nibbling, kissing, licking. I smelt the musky odour of his sweat and breathed it in deeply. My hands held his back, stroking, tickling, gently scratching. Slower and gentler became our movements, each of us murmuring to the other. His mouth sought mine and we kissed deeply, but gently. I felt our cocks, now flaccid and spent, gently caress one another. His grey eyes opened and he drew back, looking at me;

- Steve, I love you. I want to be with you for ever, as long as we both shall live.

My heart felt like it had been wrenched from me when I heard those words. I couldn't say anything. How could I let him know that what he just said could never be? How could he know that I only had a short time left, and that it would be ugly; the time would be one of pain, despair, helplessness. I couldn't let Oli go through that, to see me like that. I held him close, kissing him all over his face, neck, shoulders, trying to find the words I needed to say, as I wept.

- Oli, my love, I love you too, more than I can say.

I couldn't tell him. I could not, would not destroy this moment. My course had been mapped out for me, I had to follow it to the bitter end and it was a journey I had to undertake on my own. Oli, if you ever read this, you must understand, I am doing it for you. You have so much to live for, so much life ahead of you. Me, I have nothing, just darkness, despair...death. But wherever I go, and wherever your life takes you, I will be with you. This was meant to be and our destinies were meant to cross, I am now sure of that. Just know that I will always love you.

I looked at him as I thought of my life until now, the crowning moment of my existence. We were both exhausted, physically and emotionally. I took a sleeping bag and pulled it over us, as we snuggled close together, cocooned in our love and the dimness. Gradually our hearts slowed down, and outside, the rain kept falling and the falls' dull roar eased its way into my consciousness. We lay there, drowsy after our exertions, as Oli slowly fell asleep. I watched his face relax, his breathing become regular, his golden figure in deep repose next to me.

I had decided.

Gently, so as not to wake my sleeping lover, I slipped away from him. Not even bothering to dress, I took my diary with me out into the fog.

***

Disa, big sis... I'm scared...

What's the matter little bro?

It's Steve, he's vanished...

What do you mean Oli?

We...we were in the birdwatchers' hide, it's still foggy here and we...we... we made love. I love him, sis and I told him I wanted to be with him for ever. He said he loved me...then...then I must have fallen asleep and when I woke up just now, he was gone.

He's probably gone to have a think little bro, he won't go far in the fog. You're getting upset over nothing.

You don't understand, Dis, he's gone off with no clothes on! He's just taken that diary of his and vanished. I have to try and find him. I'm so scared, sis, if he should get lost in the fog, and the waterfall so close. Why did he go? And with no clothes? Please, please sis, tell me it's all going to be alright.

You must look for him, bro. Let me know as soon as you find him. You've got me worried now...it's certainly strange.

Sis, you don't think he's...that he's going to... going to do something?

I don't know Oli, get searching. Do you want me to call the mountain rescue team?

I'll look first and if you don't hear from me in an hour or so, call the emergency number. I don't think the signal is too good here and the battery's running a bit low. I'll let you know if I find him though.

Okay, Oli. Take it easy, he's probably a naturist or something. Don't get upset baby bro.

I'll try...Oh Disa, I love him so much, I hope he's okay.

Don't hang around...Go look from him. I'll wait to hear from you.

Okay.

Bye bro, don't worry, he'll be alright. And Oli, ....I love you.

Love you too sis, 'bye.


***

Sis?

Did you find him?

No...I didn't. I found his diary, though...

And?....Oli...answer me.

O Dis, he's so ill, he didn't tell me...

What do you mean bro?

I told him after we,...after we made love... that I wanted to be with him for ever, for the rest of our lives...

What did he say? What was his reaction?

He...sort of didn't say anything much. I thought I had maybe sprung it on him too suddenly, so I left it at that...I didn't know...

Didn't know what, bro?

He's got cancer, Dis, the big C..... and it looks like he hasn't got long left...I think...I'm afraid he's gone and done something stupid...

Oh, Oli, my sweet bro, don't think that...

What can I think? He left me when I was asleep, with no clothes on, just this diary, he wrote something to me in it... I think he's done what Stefan did... Why? Why?

Calm down Oli, keep looking. I'm going to call the rescue team out. He's probably lost in the fog...

Oh my God, sis, I couldn't bear it if he has done something to himself...I couldn't live with myself...

Don't even think it, bro. We're going to find him, right?

Bye sis....

Oli?....Oli???

***

I watch as the young man wanders blindly through the fog. I am so close, I could reach out and touch him, but he doesn't see me. Poor boy. All alone, in this strange land, lost and with no clothes on. I know what is going through his mind. I can see the dark canyon of his despair. I so much want to bring light and warmth and love to him, but it is not yet time. I love him so very much, I love my son. I have watched over him since I left him. I was taken away so suddenly, so unexpectedly, before I had the chance to tell him I knew what ghosts were haunting him. I knew about him and Pete; I just wish I had said something about it to him. I know he was suffering. I was going to talk about it that day, his father and I had discussed it, but that freak storm ended all that. I shouldn't have kept putting it off. I have been with him when his life was turned upside down. I so want to comfort him, but cannot. Soon, soon.

He is sitting writing in his diary. Trying to explain, trying to make amends. Poor, lost boy. You have found your soulmate too late. You will figure out what to do. It will be hard, but whatever you do, will be your decision. I cannot guide you, cannot influence you. My poor baby! What a hard thing to have to face. You are not alone, although you think you are. I can't reach out and stroke your tears away, make it all better, like when you were a small boy. If you knew, I hope you would feel better. There, there, my baby. It will soon be over. I am walking by your side, as you leave the book lying on the ground. You are in your recurring dream; wandering, lost in some sort of fog, a kind of limbo. It feels like you are walking a tightrope, or close to some hidden danger. There's this roaring close by, like an inferno, but there is no heat. You are cold and frightened, and very, very alone. But you are not...

I watch, as you come to the edge of the canyon...looking down, I see your life flash past you. You step out into the void, and into the arms of your mother. Welcome back, my darling boy!

***

I watched as the boy stopped and bent down to pick something up. It was a book, with a black cover. I watched as he opened it and began to read. I was so close to him, he could have felt my breath on his face, but he didn't see me. He sat and read the book, immobile as if turned to the very stone against which he was leaning. I watched as he read, the only movement his tears as they flowed from his grey eyes. I watched as he finally got to his feet and mounted the patient pony which had been standing nearby, as if, like me, he was guarding this most precious treasure...

I watched as the boy turned away from the track and steered his wiry pony through the fog and over the rough terrain to the edge of the canyon. I was so close to him, I could have reached out and touched him, but he didn't see me. The roar of the falls filled his ears, the spray mingled with the tears streaming down his face. His whole world was for that minute focused on the turbulent waters at the base of the waterfall. His breathing was ragged and sobs racked his youthful form. He clutched the book tightly in one hand; just a plain black book, the initials SR just visible on the worn leather cover. He held it high in the air, a black oblong like a tombstone against the fog.

It seemed to the young man that above the roar of the falls he heard a sigh go up, like a release, a consummation. Gazing down, through his mingled tears and spray, in his own language he murmured in a low, hoarse voice saying:

- Bless, elskan min - be blessed, my beloved.

He tucked the book into his jacket, over his heart. The falls continued their relentless roaring as they always had and always would, but for him, there was an extra sound in them; the quiet, intimate laughter of a friend, a lover, a soulmate. The young man slowly turned his pony round and made his way through the swirling mist over the sparse vegetation back from whence he had come, the memories flooding over him. It began to rain and the sky wept with him as his tears fell freely....

I walked by his side, but he could not see me. I had robbed him of the one thing he had loved, I had taken my own life...it was now my turn to help him find his soulmate. I gazed at my one-time lover, knowing that the young man with whom he had just consummated his love was the man who was destined for him. I was glad for him. I watched, as Oli stopped, put the diary into his saddlebag, urged the pony to find it's way home and turned back, walking slowly towards the roaring sound. He knew where he was going. Without faltering, he walked on up to, and then over, the cliff top. As he fell, a great light enveloped him and then the two souls were taken together into the great mystery. The two became one and dazzled my eyes. I rejoiced for them, as I slowly moved towards the light. I had made amends, and finally my task was over.

***

News item from the daily "Morgunbladid"

The bodies of two men were found in the glacier river last night. One, nineteen year old Olafur Kolbeinsson and the other an unknown foreigner. Investigations are underway to determine the identity of the foreigner, thought to be a tourist on a trekking holiday. Police are not giving details of the circumstances surrounding their deaths, but have ruled out foul play. It is known they had been travelling together and Olafur was very familiar with the terrain. The fog round the falls was very thick yesterday and police have described the incident as a "tragic accident."

***

From the British Embassy, Reykjavik

To Ms Herdís Kolbeinsdottir

Dear Ms Kolbeinsdottir,

At your request, we searched for relatives of Mr Stephen Roberts, who died in the tragic accident at the glacier river.

Despite our exhaustive enquiries, we were unable to trace any living relatives.

We therefore see no legal obstacle to your proposal that Mr Roberts' body be interred in Iceland, provided that this is done at your own expense.

Yours faithfully &c.

***

From the Deaths Announcement in "Morgunbladid"

The funeral of our beloved son and brother,
Olafur Kolbeinsson, who died so tragically in an accident.
will take place on Saturday June 25 at 3pm.

Also, that of his close friend, Stephen Roberts.

No flowers please, but donations may be made to
the Mountain Rescue team "Hekla".
Kolbeinn Olfasson, Maria Jonsdottir, Herdís Kolbeinsdottir
and other relatives and friends.

***


From a memorial article in "Morgunbladid"

Olafur Kolbeinsson was born on September 3rd 1984 and died in an accident on 21 June 2003, aged 19 years.

O dearest Oli, this is the second time I have had to sit down and write down my thoughts, with you in mind. The first time was a year ago, when Stefan, your dearest friend and lover was tragically taken away from us. I little thought I would be writing a eulogy for you, my dearest sweetest little bro. Just when we all thought you had got over your loss and things looked as if they were working out, you were stolen from us, leaving us to ask why? What is the meaning behind all of this? We shall never know what was going through your mind at the end, but I know you had just found a new love in your life, your soulmate, who, it seemed felt the same way for you. Oli, wherever you are, I hope you are at peace with your Steve. Rest in peace sweetest little bro. Your Disa.

***

From a leading article in "Morgunbladid" June 24 2003

In the light of the tragic accidents recently at glacier river, the question has to be asked; what can be done to stem the tide of apparent teen suicides here in Iceland? Figures show that an intordinate number of young teens, mostly male, are committing suicide. The government and Church authorities as well as the social services need to address the problem; they need to focus on this group of young people who feel so shut out from the rest of society, that they find no other option but to end their lives. Recent figures suggest that the trend is on the rise. This is a situation which must be remedied. How many more young lives will it take before action is taken?

Schools should have adequately trained counsellors on hand who can recognise the problems facing the young before they become blown out of all proportion and unable to be addressed rationally. We are glad to note that the Icelandic Gay and Lesbian Society, Samtökin 78, is taking this problem seriously and addressing it in a sensible and responsible way, with counselling, discussion groups etc., but more needs to be done and more money must be spent. We cannot sit idly by and watch the cream of Icelandic youth be wiped from our society, mainly because of problems involving their sexuality. This narrow-mindedness on behalf of the government and other leaders must cease. Now.

***

Here they lie, together in Death,
as they would have wished in life.

Olafur Kolbeinsson
born: 3 September 1984
died: 21 June 2003

Stephen Roberts
born: 8 November 1983
died: 21 June 2003

Rest in Peace.

***

We both watch over Disa. We watched as she slowly began to be able to smile and laugh again. We rejoice in her triumphs. We watched over her at the birth of her twins, one ash-blonde, like her, the other taking after his father, dark, but both with grey eyes. We watched as she named them Oli and Steve. We shall be their guardian angels, too. Here, love is boundless as it always was and always will be...

THE END

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