In For a Penny, In For a Pound
by J J Janicki
Even though this story involves two rebellious preacher's kids along with a possibly wicked Sunday School superintendent's son, it's not to be a rant against organized religion. It's not about what I believe or don't believe now, it's about what we believed then and how we managed to get around those beliefs and have sex anyway.
Except, once it started, most of the beliefs we'd been brought up with really didn't matter, so aside from stating the facts as we saw them, this story is primarily about sex, period.
Oh, and one other thing. Once it started, you can forget about there being anything gradual about it.
That much can probably be gathered from the title, though.
Well, all right, two other things. My name's C.J. That's the only name I'll answer to, because even if Carroll is a man's name, you should know good and well that every kid in school will be calling you Carolyn, and I couldn't have that. No way. (And I didn't think my middle name – Jamison - was much better.)
So now that that's taken care of...
The first thing I liked about my father taking a new church in Wilmington, NC was the fact that I was finally a city slicker. In 1970 it only had a population of around 46,000, so it was hardly a big city, but in comparison to where we'd lived for the first twelve years of my life – in rural Alabama – it was a wonderful and mysterious place. Most of the kids at school in Alabama seemed to view those who lived in cities with contempt, but I'd always wanted to live in a place with sidewalks and stop lights and city parks and alleys. And traffic jams! I thought they were fascinating, and even if Wilmington's traffic wasn't close to being as jammed up as in Atlanta or Birmingham - those two cities being the only two I'd ever visited with big time traffic - at least Wilmington had some backups during the morning and evening rush hours, and it also had history. Lots of old buildings, some dating back to before the Revolutionary War.
Our church wasn't pre-Revolutionary War-old, but it was at least a hundred years old and possibly haunted. Plus, it had a steeple. Not the highest one in town, but still, the bell tower made a nice hideout. I'd climb up there, and then I'd think about things. All sorts of things.
Then there was this: the pews were nice. They had smooth, beveled edges at the top, and at twelve, that was not far below my waist. In some denominations there's a lot of kneeling during the service, but at our church there was a lot of standing up. During the reading of the Scripture and the opening prayer and at least for one out of every three hymns and during the benediction. My father was often long-winded, and this was especially true during the benediction. When everybody was supposed to have their eyes shut again up until the amen part. Even if I was at least allowed to fidget some. You certainly didn't want to get carried away with it, but you could scuff your feet a little, or shift your weight from one foot to the other, or you could rock up against the back of the pew... or slide a few inches to the left and then back to the right...
But still, nothing unforeseen ever happened in church, unless you want to count Mark Singletary, the Sunday School superintendent's son, who happened to be watching me while all that was going on one Sunday morning. I didn't know I was being watched, because I had my eyes shut like I was supposed to, but he didn't have his shut because at almost fourteen he was in the middle of an adolescent rebellion. It happens, you know. I was getting that way myself, even if mine was just barely getting starting and amounted to nothing more than thinking about some things, none of which had all that much to do with sex, because I was still mostly unaware of its existence.
As it turned out, though, Mark's rebellion had almost everything to do with sex, and that brings up a basic fact about the beliefs of our denomination: any kind of sex outside of marriage was a major no-no. It was a sin. Even thinking about doing it was probably a sin, and if you were a sinner, then you were destined for eternal damnation unless you stopped sinning, so therefore, it made perfect sense to go for the whole entire enchilada if and when the opportunity ever presented itself.
`Course, Mark still didn't know if I'd join his rebellion, but after church let out that morning, he pulled me aside out in the parking lot and whispered, "I saw you trying to get your rocks off while your old man was praying, but just so you know, there are better ways of doing that."
I looked at him blankly and said, "Getting my rocks off? What does that mean?"
"You're kidding me!" he exclaimed, "You don't know about that either?"
"I don't have any idea what you're talking about." When it came to learning about worldly things, I'd always been honest with him. I had to be, else I wouldn't ever be learning about them, right?
Right. He glanced around quickly and after noticing that his folks were on their way out, he whispered, "Tomorrow, up in my tree house, I'll show you, all right?"
And so it was, that at a little before nine the next morning, for the first time ever, I saw some pictures of completely naked women. Much more naked than any I'd ever seen in National Geographic or in the encyclopedia, and it was interesting, but when Mark said Sheri Johnson had almost as much hair down there as the ones in his Playboys and Penthouses did because he'd accidentally seen her once...
Well, I was both stunned and aroused, because she went to our church. As far as I could tell, she was practically flat-chested, but she was cute. In a tomboyish sort of way. Even if she was almost certainly as pure as the driven snow. But once – not long before we moved there - the lady's bathroom was out of order, so if you had to go, you used the boy's instead and apparently Sheri thought she'd locked the door when she hadn't and Mark walked in on her and they both almost had heart attacks.
But - back in Mark's tree house - after getting me aroused with all that talk about seeing Sheri Johnson with her panties down around her ankles, he glanced at my lap and said, "You got a hard-on now, don't you?"
"That's... like when your... your... um... dick gets hard, right?"
"Well, duh! What else do you think I'd be talking about?"
"I give up. What?" I was trying to take the offensive on this deal.
"Let's get naked, all right?"
So back on the defensive again. I started, "Well... I'm..."
"I'll do it if you will, and then I'm going to show you something that will blow your mind!"
He was pulling his clothes off and I was starting to hyperventilate. Not that I hadn't seen other boys naked, like at church camp when we were getting ready to go swimming or whatever, but somehow I knew this was going to be different!
And it was. Mark was hard too, and he had hair! I don't guess it was more than about five inches, but to me it looked wicked. It was almost straight up in the air and it was kind of red and...
"Come on, C.J. It don't matter if you've started puberty or not, all right? Either way, I'm not going to laugh at you, all right?" He was trying to cajole me, and I was about to give in, even if I was still a little reluctant, because I really hadn't started puberty, only...
"Well, shit," he giggled, "I'll strip you myself, then."
(Light bulb.) "Oh yeah? You and whose army?"
"Don't need no army. You're a shrimp, C.J. so you really think you can stop me?"
"Well, why don't you just try me and see, then?"
"Shit. That did it," and then ...
It was just glorious. It didn't take him long to strip me naked, but the way I was looking at it, that gave me every right to grab hold of anything I could get my hands on. He had a nice, soft ass, and his pubic hair was soft and downy. And as for his dick ... oh my. When I latched onto it, it jerked. Not to the point of losing it – as it turned out - but it was very hard and very smooth, except for his bulb, which was spongy and fairly pliable...
Mark gasped, "C.J., cut that out!"
Only he hadn't let go of mine. So, "Let go of me, and I might let go of you," I panted. I tell you, it was glorious!
Or at least it was until he grabbed my balls. "You gonna let go of me now?"
Then he squeezed them a little, so, "GASP! Okay, okay!"
So now I was back on the defensive again. Only I was naked except for my socks, and seeing as how, true to his word, he'd not made any remarks about how little mine was... even if I'm sure there were smaller ones … because mine was three and a quarter inches... thereabouts...
But anyway, mine hadn't gone down any and if anything his looked even redder and harder than before, so after taking a deep breath I blurted, "Well, you started it. You ever think about that?"
"That's because you were acting like a chicken shit."
"I wasn't. I was thinking about it. But I was still going to."
"Yeah. Okay. You were going to. But... well, okay. What I was going to show you was... I mean, you haven't ever jerked off before, right?"
"No, and up until now, I wouldn't have known what you were talking about, but when you sort of pulled on mine... it was like, `Oh shit!' and now I think I know exactly what it is!"
"But you're not supposed to do it that way."
… "Okay, then is whatever way it is that you are supposed to do it, is that way going to feel better than when you grabbed it? Because if it does, then..."
"That's the problem," he cut in, "because I haven't ever had anybody grab me before... and you're right, I started it..." (he was in the process of talking himself into it, by now, I'm sure of it) … "but anyway, when you grabbed it, it felt better than anything I ever felt before, but you're supposed to be thinking about girls or looking at pictures of them while you're doing it."
"Jerking off, dummy!"
"Well, how exactly do you do that?"
"I'm trying to get to that, damn it! But the problem is, even if when you grabbed me, it felt good, it's kind of queer. But... if it's just between you and me... and we're not going to ever tell anybody else about it... and soon as we start dating, we'll stop doing it that way..." (he'd almost talked himself into it) … "then I guess if we're going to Hell anyway..."
"I don't think I believe in hell any more," I cut in. I was trying to set his mind at ease.
Not that it worked, because "Oh, God! Don't even think about that, C.J.!"
"Well, why in the hell not?"
"Shit, C.J., you're a preacher's kid!"
"So? That's just how it worked out. But if you'd rather be going to hell, fine with me. … So anyway, while you're on your way there..."
He shook his head as though he was trying to clear it, then finally , "It'll work out better if I do it for you the first time anyway. So I will, as long as you're doing the same thing to me? Deal?"
By then I was feeling like I had the upper hand again. Maybe it was because I was thinking that I was even more rebellious than he was. Not to mention cooler, so that's why I resolved to act cool. I was so excited, I was almost shaking, but I was still trying to be cool, and I really was for... maybe about a minute. Possibly a minute and a half.
But that's okay. If you're gasping and squeaking, that's perfectly all right. Even if Mark was saying that I didn't have to let the whole entire neighborhood know about it. But it was the most wonderfully wicked thing I'd ever done and it felt... well, just gloriously wonderful, even when I was still thinking that I was going to end up peeing all over his tree house in spite of him telling me a couple of times that no such thing was going to happen. I was glad I hadn't kept on rubbing it up against the back of the pew in church, though. That could have ended up being a problem.
Only, I was soon to find myself with another problem, and there weren't many ways of getting out of it.
Problems aren't always bad things, though. For example: if you run into a math problem you can't work out, then it's a bad problem, but usually, if you keep trying, something will finally click into place, so it's a not a problem any more. Unless you're still supposed to do twenty more of those problems, but even then, it's not as much of a problem as before and by the time you're almost finished, it's not a problem at all. Well, that's how it worked out with Mark. Even if sex is a lot more complicated than most math problems.
Or, at least you can make it seem that way. Like for example: being his sex slave. It was a progressive thing, but whenever he thought of something else he wanted to try, at first, I'd probably be like, Oh no! … but then a little later, I'd be thinking, This isn't so bad after all. Matter of fact, I think I like it.
And besides, it was just between the two of us. Nobody else was going to know. … As long as I kept doing what he wanted me to.
Mark had a nice dick, but he also had an evil streak.
Question is, though, how did it come to that?
Well, when it came to sex, I was close to being a blank slate. Before we moved to Wilmington, I knew very little about any kind of sex, and nothing about gay sex. It wasn't unusual to know very little about gay sex in 1970, because back then, I think more gays were in the closet than not. They weren't asking for equal rights or anything like that, they just wanted to be left alone. You can't blame them, because back then every state in the Union still had laws of some sort that basically made gay sex illegal. So it was out of sight, out of most fundamentalist's minds, and in rural Alabama, it was as though they didn't even exist. Sodom and Gomorrah were supposedly destroyed because of their wickedness, but my father never went into any detail about the nature of their wickedness... or maybe he might have at some point, but I was daydreaming again...
But whatever, I didn't have a clue as to what gay sex was. So when Mark said us jerking each other off was "kind of queer", I wasn't all that bothered before it started and by the time it was over, I wasn't any. What had just happened was the most wonderful thing I could imagine, so I didn't care if it was "kind of queer" or not.
Then the next morning, in one respect, things seemed to be improving even more because Mark said he'd been thinking about it, and he didn't think us jerking each other off was queer after all. As long as we were the only ones who knew about it, it was okay.
Problem was, though, that first time, I would have been thinking it was beyond belief even if it had amounted to nothing more than me watching him and doing the same thing to myself. First orgasms are almost always like that, I think. It doesn't matter if you're washing it real good, or if you stick it into a vacuum cleaner, or if you're rubbing up against a piece of furniture, that first time is going to be beyond anything you ever imagined, but the next time isn't going to be as spectacular. So the first time, Mark being almost clinically detached while he was jerking me off didn't bother me, but the second time...
Well, it still felt good, but I was a little let down, and adding to my disappointment was the fact that there had been no foreplay this time. The day before, we'd had all sorts of it, but that was because of him stripping me naked which led to me grabbing him back... (light bulb again)...
I knew if I was to pretend like I didn't want to get naked again, he'd see right through that, so the next day - we were looking at a Hustler Magazine this time - except I was trying to get those pictures out of my mind... even if they reinforced the idea that I didn't ever want to get married to one of those Jezebels, so there's always that...
But anyway, it wasn't long until he was primed and ready. And we were down to our undies before he started looking at that magazine, and also before he made a lewd remark about how he wished his mouth and tongue was down between the centerfold's legs. I thought that was totally uncalled for.
But anyway, whether it was the result of him looking at that harlot or not, he had an impressive-looking tent. It was straining to get out, so I guessed I'd release it. That's why I had an erection, because I was looking forward to jerking his undies down, and then I'd grab his boner, and... more foreplay!
Only Mark firmly put a stop to it by grabbing my hand and saying, "You're acting like a queer now. So cut it out."
Except my hand was already inside his undies with my fingers wrapped around his dick, and he was just holding it there, so...
That was definitely a mixed message. But he'd said I was acting like a queer, so I was feeling defensive and I blurted, "Well, if I'm acting like a queer, why are you just holding my hand there then?"
"Because it feels good. … But you're the one who stuck your hand in there, not me."
I gently squeezed it. Gentle foreplay is better than grabbing anyway. Guess so, because he groaned. Appreciatively, I was almost sure of it. So very carefully I asked, "So do you think now I'm acting kind of like a queer, or just like a queer period? … Because see, I really don't care." So there, and I continued my gentle squeezing.
Meanwhile, he was relaxing his grip on my hand, but he wasn't trying to move it away from him any. He seemed to be a little shocked, but finally he managed, "Are you trying to tell me you are one?"
… "Maybe. I'm not completely sure yet, but anyway, you want to wrestle like we did the first time? … You said it yourself. You said it felt better than anything you'd ever felt before, so you want to again?"
"If you insist," said Mark a little shakily, and to his credit, it wasn't long until he'd not only yanked my underpants off completely, he'd also thrown them and the rest of my clothes down to the ground below. Good thing his folks were at work, because otherwise, that would have been hard to explain. (But to my credit, I wasn't ever tempted to throw all his clothes outside.)
Well, take that back. I was tempted, but before yielding to that temptation, what was left of my common sense took over.
Problem was, though, I'd never been blessed with much common sense in the first place. After the fact, it had often enough seemed that way, and often enough, I'd told myself that I should have known better. Even if I often didn't know any better until after I'd gone and done it... which gets me back to wrestling and grabbing in Mark's tree house.
Well, my defense is: I still didn't know much about sex, and beyond that, I had no idea just how inflamed a wicked adolescent's passions could be.
Even if I should have taken into consideration the fact that he outweighed me by at least thirty pounds. He was older and stronger, so he could pin me any time he wanted to. Or he could force my head down between his legs and clamp down with his thighs. That should have occurred to me, because he'd already mentioned how much he'd like to have his head trapped between Miss May's thighs, so if I'd thought about it, I would have realized that he also wouldn't mind too much if the position was reversed.
"You just slobbered all over my dick," he chortled. It didn't sound like he minded it in the least.
"Um... th" I replied. It was something like that.
"In fact, I think you put your tongue on it!"
If I did, it was unavoidable. But you realize this is about to tie very directly into the title of this story, right?
Of course you do. My tongue had just touched his dick, and I'd already mentioned how I didn't care if I was kind of queer or queer period, which is something he'd reminded me of. Along with how he wasn't going to let me up until I at least sucked on it. Just once! He just wanted to know what it felt like, and he wouldn't ever tell anybody else about it. Never, ever, cross his heart and hope to die.
So I thought about it. About how it really didn't smell that bad. A little on the funky side, but I was pretty sure it wasn't anything like what Miss May or whoever she was would be smelling like... or tasting like...
And besides, if I did what he wanted, maybe he'd forget about that woman.
"Okay, I will," I said in a muffled tone of voice, "but I can't unless you let me up a little."
It seemed like his dick twitched when I said that, and putting myself in his place, I think mine would have done the same thing. But he slowly opened his thighs a little, and, "You promise? You're not going to back out. … Because if you do, I'm not going to give you back your clothes."
I studied his straining erection, and noticed that it seemed to be leaking a little. My original intention was to give it one suck and that would be the end of it – I hoped – but it occurred to me that if I put it in my mouth at all, I was going to taste his... stuff... so if that was the case... and assuming that it didn't taste really horrible...
I guessed we both needed to get as much out it as possible. I'd suck on his bulb. I was sure I could handle that much. And... I'd lick on his pee hole. It looked real pink, and somehow, the thought of doing that suddenly seemed awfully interesting.
Even if I wanted to be cool about it. Or brave. Or at least not like one of those martyrs. "Do what you will with me, kind sirs, but I'll never surrender my virginity!" Shoot, some of them wouldn't even surrender their modesty. Or so the stories often went, because seriously, if you're captured, exactly how are you supposed to put a stop to it? Overlooking divine intervention, of course. Never to save the martyrs' lives, but at least they kept their virginity...
You know, there's something very seriously wrong with those stories. I'm just saying, all right? That wasn't a rant, I was simply making an observation, but...
But anyway, I took a deep breath and tension mounted. I imagine Mark was thinking, "Is he really going to...", then, "OH MY GAWD! YES, C.J., SUCK..."
I pulled away quickly and said sternly - and coolly - "Mark, it's honestly not necessary for you to be letting the whole goddamn neighborhood in on this!" That was most wicked thing I'd ever said, but circumstances being what they were, I thought it was entirely appropriate.
"Sorry," Mark whimpered, "but...could you... please... you know... could you... I mean, I know we agreed on just once, but... um..."
"Do it some more?"
So at least he had some honor, and at least he seemed to be concerned about me after he went off in my mouth. Did it taste bad? (Not nearly as bad as I thought it might.) Well, before it happened, did it taste like pee or anything? (Not that I'd noticed.) So you think you might be doing it some more? (I shrugged.) And I probably should start another paragraph.
I shrugged. Coolly. Gotta stay cool. Always. But, "Yeah, I guess. … But only if I'm getting something out of it too."
"Like what?" he asked suspiciously.
So apparently he was coming back to earth and was starting to remember that he had the upper hand and not me, and with that in mind, I guessed I'd start with something he'd already done even if he was acting all clinical about it. "When I'm doing it to you, do you think you could at least be feeling me off real good? Because that way, it'll be like you're encouraging me."
"I guess," he said without taking much time to think about it, "because if I'm letting you blow me, then I'm already going to Hell any..."
"Hush up, Mark. You're offending my religion."
"You ain't got no religion."
"Okay, I'm still working on it, then. … But anyway, could you... jerk me off now?"
"If you give me a couple more minutes, I'll do my best. All right?"
Sometimes I was in control, but it always seemed that in the end, he was.
Except to be as honest as I can be about this, it's possible that I was only letting him, that I could have stopped it anytime I wanted, because I don't think he would have followed through on any of his threats. He wouldn't have, because if what we were up to had ever come to light, he would have been in as much trouble as me. We would have been at school, and we would have been at home.
But we kept it up. Almost every day we were at it, and this was at least twice every day, and sometimes more. So naturally, it wasn't long until I was a good cock sucker. Sometimes, I didn't like it when he put it in those terms, other times, I didn't mind. Most other times, I didn't, because while I was at it, I was in control. I could make him beg. As in: Please! Don't stop again!... and I'd say something like, "You know once I let it happen, you know good and well that next time, you'll be wanting me to make it last even longer, so hush!"
But true to his word, he would always be feeling me off and in no time at all, he wasn't being the least bit clinical about it.
Except in spite of still asking questions about what it was like on my end, he couldn't make himself go down on me. In spite of me saying that it wasn't fair and that at least my orgasms were still dry - if that was what he was concerned about - but whatever, he wouldn't go down on me until...
Not until I had another bargaining chip. Not until feeling me off progressed to him sticking his finger up my butt. Because by then I at least knew something about that, so I had a strong suspicion that he'd soon be wanting to stick his dick up there, it was just a matter of time.
Only that was a big step, and while he'd forced the issue when I ended up going down on him for the first time, now I could make him beg and whimper, I could even threaten to not do it. I wouldn't have followed through on that threat for long, but maybe for at least long enough. It was simple. I'd let him fuck me, but only if he went down on me first. My dick hardly tasted any different than his finger. And nothing was going to come out of it, it would only jerk. That's all!
So... (gulp) "Okay, I will then," said Mark. "Just once. It's probably only fair that way... and maybe I'll be so bummed out after it's over, I'll end up lasting longer once I'm fuck... um, fucking." (Seriously, this was a huge step.)
"Yeah, that makes sense, you suck me off once, you can fuck me once. Fair enough."
… "What if I want to do it more than once?"
"Then suck me off more than once. Simple." I loved being in control.
"Well... okay, I guess... I mean, I guess it's only fair, but..."
"It's really not that awful, Mark."
And so he did, and one thing about being small is, he could go all the way down on the first try. Balls included. I almost went airborne when he did that. But...
When it was time for me to fulfill my end of the bargain - when after lots of lubrication with some canola oil... which was at least better than his first suggestion would have been... WD-40... but still, when he first started pushing it in, I was regretting that I'd ever made such a stupid, stupid bargain, because I was on the verge of panicking. I was thinking about yelling, "Stop! Stop! It's not going in this time! Please, stop! … Maybe it will next time."
And to think, he hadn't even breached my sphincter... "Oh, SHIT!"
"I'm in now," Mark panted.
"You... FUCK!... are you... sure?"
"Yeah. I... I felt... something give."
He probably just now killed it, is what he probably did. That thought did cross my mind... but oh what the hell. After all that, I didn't think it could be any worse, so when he said he was going to start slowly pushing in further, and if it got to hurting too bad, I should tell him, I decided to be brave about it.
I almost changed my mind several times, because at first, the pain seemed unrelenting, but then he hit that mysterious button. My prostate. "Ohh!" I squealed.
"Was that a good oh or a bad oh?" Mark panted.
"A little... bit of... both!"
The pain never went away completely, because for one thing, he couldn't hold back long enough. First time, I guess you almost never can. But he lasted long enough for me to know that I wanted it to happen again. I'd discovered sweet pain. He made me squeal, and I loved it. I sure didn't love every minute of it, but once he started hitting my prostate: once I started really squealing, I knew the pain was worth it.
It remained our secret for the rest of that summer, but once school started, it was only on weekends, and that was to be only for a little while longer.
The problem was: Mark's parents were a lot more conservative than mine. Not that my father was what most would consider to be a liberal, but for example: his parents had been alerted to the threat of the Secular Humanists taking over our public school system, so he was going to a Christian academy, but – and as it turned out, this was a very big but – my folks thought the city schools were perfectly all right. So it wasn't long until Mark's parents were thinking I was a bad influence on him. That's what he told me one Saturday morning, and from then on our fun and games were over and done with.
Fortunately, it wasn't much longer until Brother Singletary and his wife were busily stirring up dissension in the church, saying among other things, that my father was in league with the Catholics and the Jews. (Soon after moving to Wilmington, he'd volunteered to be a hospital chaplain, but as far as the Singletarys were concerned, all that amounted to was interdenominationalism.) I'm really not sure if that's a proper word or not – interdenominationalism...
But it hardly matters, because after much consideration, my father decided to take another church in Winston-Salem the following summer.
And I wasn't to have any more sex until I was fifteen.
Unless you want to count jerking off.
That, I did a lot of.
But before getting to when I was fifteen, some background information. That might help.
Our denomination was fairly strong in Winston-Salem, so they had three churches there, and that's how I first met Kieran Brody. His father was the pastor of First Church, and he – Kieran - was my age, so naturally, it was assumed that we'd soon become friends, and in spite of him saying he was a Christian, it wasn't long until we were because, whether he was or not, he was still fun to be around. We played lots of board games. We rode our bikes around town. We played ping pong. Sometimes, we camped out in a tent in the back yard. And we went swimming at the Y.
In `71, it wasn't a Family YMCA. They had family nights every week... which meant we couldn't go then... because that meant "mixed bathing", which our church didn't "believe in"...
But in the summer during the day, it was boys only. So one day he asked, "Hey, want to go swimming? Dad got me a membership at the Y, so I can get you in as my guest this time, so you want to?"
"Yeah," I started, "but unless you got an extra pair of trunks, we'd have to go back to my place first..."
Then he cut me off with, "Almost everybody goes bare, so we don't need any."
Kieran shrugged. "It's no big deal. I mean, it's just boys, right?"
Well, it could have been, but after seventh grade P.E., along with what I'd been up to with Mark the summer before, just seeing boys naked wasn't likely to give me an erection. I was still reviewing all the important dates of World War II in my mind the first time I went to the Y with Kieran, though. He was even smaller for his age than I was, and I was still showing no signs of puberty, but I thought he was cute in spite of that. So of course I was interested in seeing him naked, which is why I was trying to distract myself.
Even if he wasn't close to puberty either. But he had an outgoing personality, and was, in many ways, an idealist. He was against our involvement in Viet Nam, for example. Up until then, I'd just looked at the war as something I had no control over: the ones who were in control were going to do whatever they wanted to do, but after finding out just how much he was against it, I guessed I'd be a little more vocal about it as well.
Yeah, well, it's kind of transparent, isn't it? Until I met Kieran, I was mostly detached. I was cool. At my age, I saw little point in saying much about it. Not until I met Kieran.
When you find yourself wanting to be around someone as much as possible, it's almost like being in love. I knew as much about being in love as most my age – not very much – but it felt like I was.
In spite of the fact that at thirteen, there was no way there was going to be any sex with him. I was sure of that, so I didn't even try.
It could be worse.
I could go into detail about not even trying.
But I'm not going to do that.
So. Moving on to age fourteen - which I'll be spending even less time on - I finally started puberty, and because we weren't shy around each other, once I had several hairs and was sure they were for real, I was over at his place and I said, "Know what? I've started."
"Puberty! I got some hair, Kieran, I finally got some hair!"
"Can I see it?"
"Well, if you promise not to get too jealous..."
"Just shut up, all right?. Mine's bigger than yours, so I'm probably getting close too, but anyway, let me see it."
So I pulled my pants down, and there they still were. All seven of them. There was no doubt about it.
This is for the fourteen-year-old Kieran's benefit: It's not unchristian to want to start puberty. It's all right to talk about it, to wonder how much longer you'll have to wait. There might be some exceptions, but I think most of the adult believers in our church wouldn't be faulting him for that.
But him wanting to feel them... I'm sure our parents would have found that to be just a bit problematic.
Needless to say, though, I didn't mind.
Except for starting to get hard. He'd never seen it getting hard before. Whenever one of us was staying with the other overnight – either at his place or mine – we'd wake up with morning boners, but we knew at our age, it wouldn't be normal if we didn't, so we'd even compared them a couple of times. I'm sure our parents wouldn't have approved of that either, but still, curiosity is normal!
As was my reaction to his curiosity about my hair, but circumstances being what they were, I started blushing, and I managed, "Um... I think it's reacting kind of poorly to being inspected. … Can't help it."
Kieran giggled, and then, "It's my fault, but I wanted to see what they felt like. … But I think we should probably cool it now."
You're saving it for marriage?
Well, good luck with that, Kieran.
He was still fun to be around, and there were still those things he cared very deeply about. So if he wanted to remain celibate, to not even jerk off, fine!
Only I've now reached us at fifteen when we were both well into puberty, and since I've already mentioned not having any more sex except for jerking off until I reached that age... and also taking into consideration the fact that it's been all about Kieran for the past few pages, it should come as no surprise to learn that he changed his mind.
How he reached that point still might be a surprise, though. It started simply because he was against Apartheid, but once it started, it was full speed ahead from then on out. I was almost getting worried for awhile, wondering if he was checking off various vices and if robbing gas stations was on his list...
But to start with, it was because our church had missionaries in South Africa, and one of those missionaries was speaking at his church, and it seemed to Kieran that he was defending Apartheid, so in the question and answer period right after the missionary's talk, he - Kieran – started asking some embarrassing questions. So embarrassing, the missionary finally told him to sit down and let somebody else ask some questions. Story-wise, I don't guess it serves much purpose to put his questions into this story, though.
Except for the way it ended, because Kieran didn't sit down, he instead walked out with one final remark over his shoulder about how the missionary was, at best, nothing more than an apologist.
Now the thing is, I'd already told him that I had some doubts about our church. I'd told my parents that as well, even if I'd left it at I was just having some. I saw no point in going into detail about it, and what my parents said was: at my age, those doubts weren't unusual, but I shouldn't let them build a nest... and so on and so on... and all Kieran said was, he'd sometimes had some too, but he still believed.
So, naturally, when he was telling me about what happened the next day right after lunch, my first reaction was, "You're kidding! You walked out?"
"I'm afraid so."
"So how did your folks take that?"
"Not very well.... Hey, I got an idea. Want to ditch the rest of school today? We haven't missed any days yet, so I'm betting we can forge a note... say, that I started throwing up and you walked me back home... hell, we'll think of something... but you want to?"
Skipping school. Check. Forging a note from home. Check. Being untruthful about it. I guess that's another check. Profanity. Check!
"Um... yeah, I guess so," I managed. Even if...
"But what are we going to do? Any ideas?"
"Let's go see Poseidon Adventure. I heard it's pretty good. You said you had some doubts, so I bet you've already been to some movies, but anyway, want to?"
Going to a movie theater. Something else our church didn't believe in. Even if it was a movie like Bambi, when you bought your ticket, you were supporting Hollywood, so therefore, check!
Except up until then, I'd not been into a theater. I was always afraid somebody from the church would happen to drive by just as I was up at the ticket window, but...
I swallowed hard and then, "Yeah, sure. Let's. But um, when you said your folks didn't take you walking out of church too well..."
"Soon as we see a place... like behind a dumpster or something, I'll show you how well they took it, all right?"
It sounded to me like another check was right around the corner, and I was right.
Even if it was in an alley. "This looks like a good place," and after looking around to make sure no one else was in sight, he pulled his pants and his underwear down. He was fairly nonchalant about it, and I was trying to act that way as well, even if he was facing me. Not that I hadn't seen it plenty of times already, but from the time he'd started growing hair... along with it continuing to grow, it had taken on added significance. It wasn't way above average, but it was definitely bigger than mine, and there it was again. Just hanging loosely, but still, public nudity. That's what it would have been if someone else had appeared on the scene. Like a cop, for example: So check!
Then he turned around, and... "Oh God, Kieran! You got whipped over it?"
"My dad did it. He said if I was going to act like a child, that's how he'd treat me. … Did a good job of it, didn't he?"
Yeah, I'd say he did. I have no idea how many welts there were on his bottom, but... "God, Kieran, that really looks bad."
Then he pulled his pants back up, and to be honest, it was a relief because seeing his bottom like that made me feel kind of guilty.
But he continued, "He used one of those thingies you open and close your Venetian blinds with. I guess it's made out of polyethylene, so it's real flexible and it's not going to break and he was making sure he didn't miss any places. On my butt. He fucking well just beat the shit out of me!" (If he was going to check off all previously unused cuss words, that would be two more... or three if his not saying anything about me taking the Lord's name in vain counted)...
Only he wasn't finished yet. "After God only knows how long, he finally stopped and asked if I'd learned my lesson. Well, I'm not a masochist, so I told him I had. If a missionary was saying slavery was sometimes a good idea, I'd agree with him. If the missionary thought there were times when genocide was all right, I'd go for that too. If..."
"Kieran? I'm not a masochist either, but I'm starting to wonder if maybe you really are!"
"Me too," he snickered. "I don't think so, but sometimes, it's hard to keep my mouth shut. … But after the second round was finally over, I lied. I said I was truly sorry, and by then I guess he was getting tired, so that took care of it."
Lying. Check. Making light of your father's corrective measures. Check. Willfulness. Check again!
The movie was okay, even if I don't think we were paying much attention to it. Kieran whispered that he was glad the seats were cushioned, because he wasn't sure how much longer he could have put up with sitting at a desk in school.
Truthfully, The Poseidon Adventure was only decent, because there were all sorts of cliches, but to this day, if I happen to notice it's playing on a movie channel, I'm probably going to watch at least some of it, because it always takes me back to that first time.
Especially to after the movie when Kieran bought some Johnson's Baby Lotion at a drug store and asked if I minded rubbing it on his butt. It hadn't felt too bad once he'd gotten out of bed that morning – it was at least tolerable - but after sitting on it for about two more hours, padded seats or not, it wasn't feeling very good at all.
So after swallowing hard again: "Yeah... I mean, no, I don't mind... because I'm sure it hurts, but... well, like where are we going to do this?"
In some woods. Taking care of my best friend's red bottom, now that was a fantasy come true!
Even if I hadn't ever thought of that before. My father thought there were ways to correct a child without resorting to whipping. Being grounded or yelled at wasn't much fun, but I'd never once thought about being whipped, and I definitely hadn't ever thought about it happening to Kieran. He was so good and so pure... and so naked... because he was lying on his clothes... and actually, his butt was nicer than Mark's in spite of all those welts and I had to work the Baby Lotion in everywhere - I mean, it even looked like his dad had landed a few blows on his balls... and in his crack, but...
By then, I was aware of our church's stance on homosexuality. They were against it. They were against anything that even smacked of homosexual behavior, even if homosexuals were still mostly out of sight, out of mind. So my father never said much about it beyond he was sure I'd never do anything like that. Even if being the age I was, I might sometimes be tempted to. But due to the fact that I didn't want to risk finding myself under house arrest until I was old enough to leave home, I never mentioned what I'd been up to with Mark or what I'd like to be up to with some other boys. Including the sometimes saintly but still fun to be around Kieran, of course.
But aside from what our church thought about homosexuals, there was no way I couldn't know what almost everybody in the state seemed to think about it. It didn't matter if you were a juvenile delinquent type, a moonshiner, or a druggie, almost everybody seemed to think being gay was as low as anyone could get.
So fine. I had reasons for keeping my feelings hid. Only now I was rubbing my best friend's butt. I was rubbing everywhere, and he was almost purring with gratitude, but... "Um, Kieran, you know we're adolescents by now, right?"
"Yeah, C.J., I'm aware of that. So what's your point?"
"Adolescents are easily aroused. It doesn't matter if it should be happening or not, bare flesh is still bare flesh."
"So..." (he was still on his tummy, and I was still rubbing, even if I was gradually becoming less professional about it)... "are you saying you got a hard-on now?"
"I'm about to bust, stupid."
"Yeah, well, I am too. I might have had a good reason for it, but if you let somebody rub on your butt for long enough, there's no way it's not going to happen."
… "But you're still saving it for marriage, I bet."
"That might have been the stupidest thing I ever said in my life. If I could save it, I'd have enough for... ten or twenty years worth. At least."
"So... are you saying..."
"First time I jerked off, when it was over, I almost felt bad about it. Except I'd already had some wet dreams, and... well, maybe I'll tell you about them later. Maybe. Keeping in mind that you have no control over what you dream about, but the next day after one of those dreams, I figured, "Well, let's see what it feels like to do it the way almost everybody else does, and it was spectacular. See, that's why you save it up, so you can go off like a volcano.
"But the second time, it was more like one of those stupid science fair volcanoes, so when that was over, I felt even more guilty, but I think it was mostly because it wasn't as spectacular as the first time. So in a way, it really was a waste."
So another check, but... "I stopped doing it then. I promised myself I wouldn't do it again, but now we're both about to bust, so... I sure haven't ever done it with anyone else, but anyway, I was reading at the library. One of those books about growing up, and it said it wasn't uncommon for boys our age to experiment... except I think they're usually at it by about twelve or so..."
"Yeah, I experimented when I was twelve, and it was with another boy."
"Was it fun?"
"So you... jerked each other off?"
Holy shit! Even if I had to swallow again, but, "Yeah, we did that."
"Feel guilty about it?"
"So you wouldn't mind doing it again, then."
"Not any. … You just better make sure you're not in the line of fire when it goes off."
The way our church looked at it, you were destined for eternal damnation even if you were as pure as somebody like Mother Teresa, because her religion was false, and you're not saved by works alone. That might be their most basic premise of all, but burning for as long as someone like Hitler just because you were taught the wrong thing growing up? That sucks!
Turned out, though, Kieran was almost having the same doubts I had. He thought I was basically a good person, but if what he'd been taught was right, it didn't matter.
But another problem that often pops up with ex-fundamentalists is, we still retain that all or nothing mindset. If you're going to experiment with another boy, there's no point in just going halfway.
Still, though, we knew what the general public thought about it, so until we knew for sure, we had to consider the possibility that there was a line one of us wasn't willing to cross. He wasn't entirely sure about me, and I wasn't about him.
Not until we took a bus from Winston-Salem going towards the Blue Ridge Parkway. We had tickets for Boone, but soon as we were coming up on the Parkway, that's where we got off, because we were going to wander off into the wilderness until we found a mountain stream, and there, we'd pitch our tent. His tent, actually... and a little more background information...
His parents gave him permission to go camping that weekend because he'd more or less implied that we were going to be like one of those prophets in the Bible. Always wandering off into the wilderness seeking answers from the Almighty. (And that's pretty much what I told my parents. We wanted to do some thinking. About important things.)
So of course neither of us mentioned the nature of those important things, but his parents thought I was a good influence on him, and mine thought he was a good influence on me, so it was off into the wilderness, even if it was just far enough to be away from everybody. We could still hear traffic up on the Parkway even if we couldn't see it any more, so there was no danger of getting ourselves lost.
Even if before that weekend was over, we were figuring if we could learn to live off the land, we might get ourselves lost after all.
That was in the future, though. So back to the weekend in question: after pitching our tent and leaving our sleeping bags and supplies inside, we hiked down to the creek, started across a slippery log and then Kieran slipped and out of instinct, he grabbed me, which resulted in both of us ending up in the creek. So we were soaked to the skin. And we hadn't brought any more clothes with us.
Didn't matter, though. We had to quickly get out of our wet clothes, said Kieran, because otherwise we'd be risking hypothermia.
So we scurried back to the tent with our teeth chattering, stripped our clothes off, threw them over a tree branch to dry, and then we dived into our tent and started rubbing each other all over, because it had to be done, and in no time at all, at least parts of us seemed to be back to normal. His part, and my part. So that's plural. Parts. Then...
"We probably need to zip our sleeping bags together so we can huddle up against each other. We'll be conserving our body heat that way," explained Kieran.
I looked at him intently, then glanced down at his erection again. It was impressive. Not gargantuan, but still close to six inches and a lot more big around than mine was. But mine worked just as well as his did, so I was about to suggest doing something about our erections before huddling together, but...
"If you're thinking what I think you're thinking, we can worry about that later," he said hurriedly, "Right now, we need to get our butts covered up good."
So I guessed it would be interesting.
Even if I was starting to smell a rat. Not that I minded, but still...
But soon enough, we were huddled up against each other. "It feels nice, doesn't it?" he asked.
"Yeah, it does," I said blissfully.
"Want to know about the wet dream I had the night before I decided to jerk off the first time? What I dreamed about?" His voice sounded a little strange.
"I don't know how we ended up that way... I have no idea where we were or what, but we were in bed together, and we were both naked like this, and then, I don't know how it happened, but you were on top of me and it was feeling better and better and I was wondering if you were going to do anything else, and I had a feeling you were, but before that happened, I shot off."
… "So when you woke up, were you like... upset about it?"
"A part of me was. But I kept thinking about it, and before I went back to sleep, I decided that I really wanted it to happen. Not just in my dream, but for real.
"`Course, I also told myself that I'd probably feel different about it in the morning. It made sense. Up until then, it would have. But when I woke up I was still wishing you'd gone further before the dream ended. We don't have any control over our dreams, I know that, but you do have control over what you dream about while you're awake, and I knew... I knew I really wanted to do it."
"Shit, Kieran, I've been wanting more ever since I met you. Because see, when I was twelve, with Mark... that other boy in Wilmington... we took it as far as we could go, and I loved almost every minute of it."
"Sometimes, at first I wasn't sure, because to tell you the truth he was sort of blackmailing me, but in the end I always was."
Kieran started giggling. "I'm on the verge now, but I'm holding it back for all I'm worth. … See, I didn't slip on that log, I did it on purpose. Just so we'd end up like this. Mad at me?"
"Not now, I'm not."
"Good. But what if I was going to keep pretending a little longer? What if I was going to say something like... oh, I don't know, something like, `We're adolescents now. Our hormones are acting up, but the problem is, if we lose it... and we will, you know that, but the problem is, our sleeping bags would be sticky then. … And our stuff would get cold and kind of like, yuck!"
"That wouldn't help our hypothermia any, would it?"
"Wouldn't help a bit. But see, there's a way of not having it all over our sleeping bags."
"I've done that too, and it's not the least bit awful."
"Not at all?"
"Well, I'm not sure if I'd want to use it as a salad dressing, but..."
"Maybe we ought to try that some time. … But I'm not trying to trick you, C.J. I'll go just as far as you do. It doesn't mean we're gay, it just means we might be. But... can you show me how?"
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