Boy on the Towpath
by Andrew Foote
"It's Châteaux Saint Emmilion you little heathen! It's bloody expensive as well so don't go silly with it whether or not you like it!"
Guffaws of laughter from the shower room, "Yeah, yeah, yaada yaada yaada! You sound as if you're my dad already?!"
I suppressed a giggle myself, pleased to hear his laughter again.
"Well it won't be long now before I can put you over my knee and give you a damn good smack!"
"Ooooo! Promises promises! Only if you kiss it better afterwards!"
You know sometimes you get a really warm feeling inside that could easily make you cry? Well this was one of them except without the tears. He seemed back to his old self and yes, I could have kissed him……..anywhere just at that moment!
"And don't go using all the hot water either! I want a shower as well remember?"
"But I've got to make myself beautiful and smell nice for you?"
God! I was getting a stiffy just thinking about it! Those lighter moments, rare these last few days, were having an un-nerving effect on me! I told myself to settle down!
Minutes later Tom reappeared wearing nothing but a smile!
"Damn it Tom you're so bloody gorgeous! Just get some clothes on for pities sake?"
"Cut it out before I drink the whole bottle!"
My turn to shower and fortunately for Tom, he'd left enough hot water to do the job. I'd only drank about half a glass but when I returned Tom was spread-eagled on the couch and there was only a dribble left in the bottle.
"FUCK TOM! WHAT HAVE YOU DONE?!!!!"
He threw himself at me and held on for dear life!
"Just a joke? Don't get mad? I just decanted it! I've not had any of it! Honest!"
"You little sod! I'll get you for this!"
I grabbed hold of him and tickled his ribs but he managed to wriggle away but as he did so I took hold of his ankles and set to work on his little feet! He went ape!
"Oh no! Not that!! Oh PLEASE DON'T!!"
I relented after just a few more moments of torturing him!
"You scared the crap out of me you little…….."
"Yes! Toad but I was thinking of something much worse! Go and bring the wine back and fetch yourself a glass. We've got to get a decent night's sleep. Big day tomorrow."
Obviously having never been a Dad myself, I was surprised to find out just how resilient kids can be. We sat at the table with our drinks and nibbles with Tom showing no signs of distress or upset. It was me who was suffering from gut wrench.
Proud isn't really the word I would use to describe how I felt at the time. Pleased for him perhaps? Admiration probably but this I did know. My love for him had gone up another level. Yes I fancied him like fuck but behind my lust was a very pure love that, no matter how he turned out, gay or otherwise, I knew that I'd found what I'd been searching for all these years. Someone I could give my all to without reserve. I wanted to hug him and never let go. I also wanted him to grow up into a rounded individual and teach him all the joys that life has on offer. I wanted him... Oh dear God! I wanted him so much!
Banishing those thoughts from my mind I suggested a quick game of crib.
"What will we play for Stu?"
"What do you want?"
"Strip crib! Every ten points each of us loose by, we take something off!"
"You're seriously strange! Why do you want to do that?"
"'Cos I'm better than you and I like looking at you with no clothes on, that's why!"
"You've seen it all before so what's the big deal now?"
"It's a tease! Little bit by little bit!"
"What if I beat you? Yuk!! See you starkers?"
"Liar! We both know Stu, don't we? I mean we both want to…….. You know?"
I closed my eyes and slowly shook my head. The little toe rag had me right where he wanted me. Just snuck up on me like a professional chess player thinking five moves ahead, he'd boxed me into a corner from which there was no escape.
"Come here. Come and give me a cuddle. You know something? Yes I'd sell my soul to the Devil to make love to you but it isn't going to happen anytime soon. Do you get that? You are ripping me apart here, the one part of me says yes go for it but the better side says no just wait a while and see how things go. I'm going with the better side and that's it. Okay?"
"I know. Is that just wait a while then?"
"Yes. Until I'm sure that is really what you want. Then? We'll have to see won't we!"
"Thanks Stu. I love you."
"Oh Tom? If only you knew mate!"
We never did play crib!
We just sat together and talked……..and talked and once the bottle was empty we headed for bed.
Once again Tom spooned into me but this time there was a distinct lump pushing into me which I made a conscious effort to ignore! It didn't help me much though as once I was sure he was asleep proper, I went to the shower room and gave the monkey a good old slap!
Then suitably relieved, sleep perfect sleep!
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