in a Heartbeat

by Grasshopper

Epilogue #1

Marcus sold his townhouse and bought a small log home on Wadmalaw Island just twenty minutes south of Charleston. At night, he and Quin sat in the old swing on the screen porch listening to the sounds of Bohicket Creek. They made love in every room in the house, under every tree and even, several times, attempted the rope hammock tied to two huge oaks. The money from his Grandfather Witt, would last a long time if they were careful.

Quin's family visited often and they kept the kids so his parents could go on a much deserved vacation to DisneyWorld.

Marcus' Aunt Reenabelle loved to come stay with her 'two boys'. She doted on Quin and encouraged Marcus by reading and loving his stories. She persuaded an old college friend at Kensington Books to read over one and a new author was born.

Marcus' parents were never invited.

Marcus kept insisting that Quin let him pay for those last two years of college, but the only agreement they could come to was that Marcus could match what Quin earned and that Quin would pay him back. Quin was very serious as they shook on it, and Marcus just smiled.

Quin graduated from USC with honors, ready to tackle life as a recreation director at the Broad Street YMCA. He spent his spare time taking care of Marcus, who, when lost in his writing, seemed to live in another world. Quin just smiled and knew that when Marcus surfaced, he'd be all his again.

Marcus wrote his book. Actually, he wrote a few. He had just needed the love that Quin brought into his life to kick start himself. They weren't best sellers, because, true to himself now, he was a gay author. He couldn't leave the biggest part of his life out of his writing. But, he was amazed at the huge number of people who loved to read his love stories. He got letters from people who just wanted to read a happy ending.

He dedicated each of his books to people who had changed his life:

*To Quin, for freeing me and loving me

*To Deacon, for taking the time to listen

*To my Grandfather Witt, I wish I had known you

And one to a boy he had only known for a few minutes one hot summer night on a beach so many years ago:

"Does everyone remember their first time? The first time you touch someone else? I want to dedicate this story to a boy on a beach when I was thirteen. He opened my eyes. Thank you, JD. I've never forgotten."

Marcus and Quin kept saying they were going to drive up to Wrightsville and find Deacon. Marcus owed him a lot and wanted him to know that everything had worked out. Maybe, one day, they would.

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