All the Queen's Men
by N Fourbois
Term continued. With the full moon came the clandestine meeting of the Inner Conclave, so secret that very little can be revealed about it, but, to keep the momentum going, Jackman's name was mentioned under 'any other business'. It still puzzled our two protagonists how on a particular night once a month boys could be on the move about the house in the small hours of the morning and nothing was ever mentioned, no one was ever disciplined. To all appearances the Housemaster was completely unaware of the goings-on. As they moved up the school they inferred that the Head of House and his Deputy were always IC members. Were there such affairs in other houses?
The School ran with very little excitement. It was universally acknowledged that January and early February formed the direst time of the school year. The communal atmosphere perked up after half term. Since it was at most times a closed community, Queen's could avoid the winter bugs and illnesses. The San was at its busiest after exeat weekends, not so much after half term because the pupils could be nursed back to health at home.
By now Oscar and Toby had integrated well into the school. The artificial barriers of the house system were beginning to break down as boys made new friends in classes, through sport, clubs and activities. By and large Oscar and Toby were well known, well liked throughout the school community, Toby particularly because of his sport, and he did make the U14 A hockey XI by half term. Oscar made other friends through his success at cross-country and despite harriers' typically being introverts by disposition. But with success comes envy and Oscar and Toby had from outside Tippett House, and to a lesser extent from within, their detractors who would usually manifest their negative attitudes by using the couple's homosexuality as a stick to beat them with. The peace between them and Olly Salmon was a brittle one, and, naturally, in any conflict Marcus would automatically side with his boyfriend. As part of his interests Oscar was developing an ability in foreign languages. He had sleepwalked through the French classes at his previous school, for they had been trivial and unchallenging, but at Queen's he was offered intellectual goals undreamt of previously. Now he had also started German in class time and he attended Latin Club after school. But Oscar and Toby had also built themselves a reputation for helping others. There were the matchmaking episodes, the rescues from Jakeman's clutches and eventually the neutralising of him, perhaps not the best word to describe what was to happen.
Essentially they were outward looking boys with a maturity beyond their age. This tale deals predominantly with their relationship and so it might be reasonable to assume that it was all consuming. Nothing could be further from the truth. They helped people in various ways and although from time to time they would remind Theo Leithner and Lee Perrings that they still 'owed', they never did collect. Why should they? They had each other and that was sufficient. They had proved that they could seduce others, such as their mentors, but proved it to whom? Themselves?
Oscar and Toby were looking forward to the Lent half term. Nine continuous nights together were more than they had ever had before without a third party being present. Jackman was also preparing himself for half term. Because of his personal circumstances he hated being away from Queen's. He was cut off from his ready supply of sexual gratification and he never felt welcome at his aunt's house.
On the Friday before half term he was sitting in an English class, the same fourth form set that Dominic Dumbleby was in. After a knock the door opened and a third former appeared with a note which he handed over to the English master. "Jackman, you are to report to Matron in the sanatorium at the beginning of break." A mumble went round the room which included the words 'syphilis', 'they're going to chop it off', 'chlamydia'. He looked round the room and scowled at his antagonists. A stern look from the English master was sufficient to scotch any further mumblings.
At the end of the period the class scrambled out to begin break. Jackman slouched towards the sanatorium. As he went in, Matron greeted him cheerily and said "Michael, the school doctor is here and would like to see you."
"Hallo, Michael," said Dr Stennett. "You remember your stay in hospital for a couple of nights last term. You were examined and told that you would have to undergo a procedure for a phimosis. I'm sorry it has taken so long. It is being undertaken by a surgeon who is one of our old boys and who still takes a special interest in our pupils. We'll go back to the house so that you can pick up your things and I'll take you down to the hospital myself. The procedure will take place tomorrow morning and you will need a few days to recover and then you'll be back at school, ready to go even if you have to take things steadily. At least you'll feel quite comfortable at the end of this. Your aunt has signed all the necessary consent forms. Any questions, Michael?" Before he had the chance to ask, Matron said
"I want you to take this tablet. It will prevent any anxiety you might have." She didn't say it would lower his will to resist if he became uncooperative.
Jackman was not to know this of course, but through the Headmaster he had been referred to the attention of the IC and, just to make it clear, neither Oscar and Toby, nor Dom and Nik, had a hand in this affair. Because of his membership of the IC the surgeon waived his fee and the costs for what was about to happen, were borne by the IC alumni's benevolent fund, and although permitted by the letter of the law, just, it was hardly in tune with the spirit.
Saturday morning after an enforced shower Jackman was wheeled down to the operation theatre, starved and dehydrated. The last thing he remembered was a large clock in the prep room at twenty past nine, the next thing a similar large clock in the recovery room at ten to one. He was lying on a trolley with a large protective cage over his groin and a thin coverlet over his body, sufficient to keep him warm. Immediately a male nurse came over and performed the routine checks and soon after, his surgeon arrived. The nurse removed the coverlet and the cage and the surgeon inspected his handiwork. Jackman was a little surprised to see that his groin had been completely shaved, though he had been warned, his penis completely devoid of foreskin with a catheter inserted, both testicles loose and strangely level and he accepted the purple bruising in his groin, consistent, though he was not to know it, with a vasectomy, as part of the procedure and theoretically completely unnecessary for a gayboy, but added as a precaution in case of his diminished responsibility in matters sexual.
"Well, Michael, even if I do say so myself, that is a job well done. I'm pleased with that. Now, you, young man, have to keep this clean, otherwise we might have to chop the lot off if it becomes infected." Jackman believed him, though it was meant humorously, and he shuddered. "Don't give Nurse Bruce any trouble and we'll soon have you out of here. You'll experience two or three days' discomfort, but after that we can take the catheter out so that you can urinate properly and we'll know all is going well when you start masturbating again. I bet you've never been given permission to do that before. We need to take a couple of semen samples."
Admittedly, the nurse was quite dishy, but typically Jackman was interested in sex, not beauty. If it had a dick, balls and a hole, he would shag it even if it was as ugly as sin. "Okay, Nurse, he can go back onto the ward when you're ready. I'll see you next week," said the surgeon who, without saying any more, silently admired the nurse's bottom and disappeared.
Medically things improved, while Jackman became increasingly bored. He had a television in his room, some books, although he was not a great reader, and some prep which he had already completed. He fantasised over his nefarious activities at school, but that just caused him significant pain at the beginning of the week while he still had the catheter in as his penis attempted to get hard. The highlights were when Nurse Bruce came to inspect his wound as it was healing. He felt something extra as his genitals were touched by hands in latex gloves. He suspected he was receiving more attention in that area than was strictly necessary, but said nothing since it brought a little joy into his life and after the attention he could lie back and imagine what it might be like slowly pushing his prick into Nurse Bruce's pert little butt.
Towards the end of the week Nurse Bruce came into the room and closed the door behind him. "Michael," he said, "we need to have a little talk about aftercare." Jackman gave him one of those sideways looks out of his slitty eyes. He thought that once he'd been discharged from hospital, that was it. "It concerns personal hygiene. Matron gave us copies of your relevant medical notes. Firstly you do need to shower every day. I gather that's not been happening. And then again after games."
"I avoid games. I hate games."
"That's another thing you ought to reconsider, Michael. It's so important for your future health. Why don't you like games?"
"Because everyone stares at me. It's even worse if I shower."
"We can make arrangements about that, and I think after your procedure people won't do that any longer. Now you should also be wearing underwear which you can change ever day. Is there any particular reason you don't?" Jackman just gave him a sullen look and there was no way Nurse Bruce was going to get an answer. "Is it to do with your sexual activity?" A reddening of his cheeks answered that question. "Underpants form a barrier between your body and your outer clothes and keep them cleaner. You'll find that will help you get on with your fellows better. You probably don't smell anything because you're used to your own body odour. Unfortunately other people do and it's not pleasant for them, which brings me on to the importance of using an underarm deodorant and cleaning your teeth, even using a mouthwash such as Listerine. You've had your hair cut. So that will be easy for you to look after and your pubic hair was shaved as part of your procedure. So you might consider keeping it shorter.
"We now come to your sexual activity, Michael. You realise that at your age it is against the law?" Jackman gave a sour acknowledgement. You are at present protected by medical confidentiality and Dr Stennett sees no reason for this to be reported to the school authorities. However, that's fine all the time you are healthy, and while you've been in here we've done the STI tests and you are clean. You probably will remain clean if you confine your activities to school fellows, but your notes say that you are sexually active outside school."
"How do they know that?" Jackman had finally broken his silence and spoke in defiance.
"I'm not going to ask you if that's true or not. It's in your medical notes and I think your reaction was a sufficient response. You have probably been told this in your PHSE lessons. If you indulge in sexual intercourse, anal intercourse in your case, you must use protection, especially as you are promiscuous. You understand the word promiscuous, don't you?" Back to the sullen silence. "It means having sexual relations with lots of people. When you have anal intercourse, you must use a condom. MUST! Understood? You are promiscuous, which might have been safe if, as we said, you confined your activities to school, but your notes say you go off campus to find partners, and that is risky."
"How the fuck do they know all this?"
"Probably because you could have been more discreet. That's something you've got to sort out.
"Okay, you don't have to buy condoms. The local STD clinic here at the hospital here will provide them free. All you've got to do is get off your butt and go there. It's free. It's confidential. They won't even tell the school, but, Michael Jackman, you are at a crossroads. It's part of growing up. One way is a rather unhealthy, unhappy and short life, another to be sensible and take some advice and the third way is abstinence, that is no sex with anybody else at all.
"I'm not having that."
"Your call then, Michael.
"While I'm here, I may as well check you over." Nurse Bruce rolled back the coverlet and removed the cage. Jackman's penis was lying languidly across the left side of his lower abdomen, his testicles hanging low, large and level "Yes, that's healing very well. The bruising's disappearing and'll be gone by the time you get back to school. We wouldn't want anyone to think we were abusing you in hospital, would we?" He paused to put on a pair of mauve latex rubber gloves. He gave Jackman's testicles a long tactile examination, ran his courting finger along his perineum and briefly touched the entrance to his hole. This gave Jackman an erection. "Does that erection hurt?"
"Okay, good. Now we need to take a specimen of semen. Do you want to do it, Michael, or shall I?"
"You do it, Nurse, but you'll stop if it hurts, won't you?"
"Sure, just tell me." Jackman was getting really aroused. This was the first sex he had had for almost a week and he was really up for it, even though it was a simple wank rather than a shag. Nurse Bruce took it really slowly, edging him three times before he let the ejaculate dribble into a Petrie dish. Jackman found the warmth of the rubber gloves on his testicles and penis exquisite. Nurse Bruce handed him a tissue and told him to clean himself up.
By Friday he was ready to be discharged, but his surgeon would not be there to give the all clear until Monday and given the choice of a boring weekend in hospital and a boring weekend with his unwelcoming aunt, the stay in hospital won by a length. To be fair she did visit him. She took his school uniform and dirty clothes away and brought them back clean on Saturday. Friday Nurse Bruce spent time with him in a further attempt at re-education. Only time would tell whether he had succeeded, for it was again centred round personal hygiene, particularly showering regularly with special attention to his armpits, crotch and bottom, to wearing underwear and to changing his clothes frequently. At least while he was in hospital he had two compulsory and supervised showers each day.
Finally Monday morning arrived. Nurse Bruce came in and did the checks. He took extra time fondling Jackman's balls, again in latex gloves, and his cock re-acted in the expected manner. "This is all part of the checking procedure, Michael. Oh, while you've got an erection you may as well give me a semen sample. Do you want me to leave you to it?"
"Not really. You can do it for me if you want." All done, Nurse Bruce took the Petrie dish and put a lid on it.
At ten the surgeon appeared with Nurse Bruce in attendance. "How are you feeling, Michael?"
"Okay. At least I can touch it now."
"Your penis? Let me see. Oh, yes, that's healed very nicely. Just one more thing and we can send you back to school. We must give you an injection. Not too pleasant, but it will be over quickly. Sharp scratch." The surgeon pushed the needle into the base of Jackman's penis. He jumped. The surgeon pressed on the plunger. "There, Michael, it's almost done. With this injection in your penis, you won't be able to get hard for a few weeks. No more erections while it heals completely. It'll be far more comfortable for you, and it will help the healing process. All you have to do is keep it clean. Any difficulties, report to Matron and also she'll make an appointment for you to see me in the Easter holidays. I have enjoyed treating you, Michael. You are now discharged."
"Thank you, sir," said Jackman, and he meant it. He couldn't wait to get back to school and resume his activities behind the holly bush. However, he was yet to appreciate the implications of what his surgeon had just told him and he did not know that the letter to be sent to the school doctor contained instructions to administer the injection periodically until he left school. If he refused, the School would no longer be in a position to take responsibility for him and consequently he would have to continue his education elsewhere. The School had gained partial control over Michael Jackman's underworld activities until he left.
As previously stated, Oscar and Toby were looking forward to the Lent half term. Nine continuous nights together were more than they had ever had before without a third party being present.
School ended early that Friday to allow for those with long distances to travel. Oscar and Toby hurried back to Tippett to fetch their belongings, Toby a weekend bag full, Oscar rather more. On entering, they found Mr Awnott talking to Mr Forrester. Although he had not met him before, Oscar could not mistake who it was, for he was a slightly taller version of Toby. Toby ran and gave his father a hug and introduced Oscar. Mr Forrester said he had other parents to see and excused himself, while wishing the boys a good half term.
"Come on, boys," said Mr Awnott. "It's a long drive and I want to get you two home." They walked across to the visitors' car park and stopped by a large new black BMW. "You didn't tell me you got a new car, Dad."
"I wanted it to be a surprise. It needs a good run." Just at that moment Nik Ogen was passing.
"Hey, Toby. Hey, Oscar."
"Smart set of wheels, Mr Awnott. I'm going to get myself a motor like that one day."
"This is Nik, my mentor, Dad."
"Hi, Nik. I'll give you first refusal when it's time to pass it on."
The boys climbed into the back together, after stowing their luggage in the boot. They could smell the newness of the leather. Mr Awnott pulled away, heading out of the gates and for the motorway. The boys waved to Nik, as they left, managing to use all the fingers on their hands. Despite the Friday traffic they made good time to Toby's house in the country. Mrs Awnott saw them pulling up in the drive. The boys got out, happy to stretch their legs. Mrs Awnott opened the door, but before she could greet the arrivals, a spaniel had bounded out of the house and across the drive, ignored her owners and put her front paws on Oscar's chest and, while wagging her tail madly, was licking his face. "Down, Tilly," said Toby. "This is Tilly. She won't bite, but she might lick you to death." Fortunately Oscar liked dogs.
The first thing they did was to have a cup of tea. After the introductory pleasantries Mrs Awnott said "Oscar, we want you to feel at home with us. We've heard such a lot about you and we've been dying to meet you."
"Call me Richard," said Mr Awnott.
"And me Florence," added his wife.
"Thank you, Mrs er… Sorry, Florence."
"Now, I consulted Toby and he suggested we put you both in the granny flat. Then if you want to sleep in, there'll be no one bustling around to disturb you." Not until later did it occur to Oscar that 'sleeping in' might be a euphemism. "Now Monday to Friday Richard and I will be at work during the day, but Toby's sufficiently house trained to look after you. If there's anything you need, just ask. I suggest you go and get settled in and I'll call you when supper's ready."
The boys took their stuff out the car boot and, followed by Tilly, took it to the granny flat. It was set up for residents with a living room and television and a large bedroom, naturally furnished with a king size double bed. Oscar's jaw dropped. "The 'rents say 'boys will be boys' and may as well get on with it," stated Toby. "They said we won't get disturbed here and if they don't know what we're up to, they won't worry." Oscar thought the number of spare towels and boxes of tissues showed that Mr and Mrs Awnott had a very good idea of what gay adolescent boys got up to.
Tilly lay at Toby's feet with the risk of being trodden on while he and Oscar went about unpacking and getting ready for supper. "I think we've just about got time for a shower, Oscar," said Toby, "… if we share!" spoken as an afterthought which wasn't an afterthought.
"Stop it, Tobes. I'm already hard and I'll have to put on a clean pair of briefs afterwards now."
"No worries. There's a washing machine in the kitchen."
After they'd stepped out of the shower and were towelling each other down, the telephone rang a couple of times and went dead. "That's Mum giving us a ten minute warning that dinner's almost ready," said Toby.
"Tobes, I'm sure your balls get heavier every time I feel them."
"Probably. I'll have to start on weights when I get back to school so that I carry them."
"Piss off. They're not that heavy."
"Yet! Mmm, I'll wear loose 501s. I've got nothing to prove tonight."
"I'm putting my moleskins on."
"The black ones, I hope, Oscar. I don't really want to lose control and ravish you in front of the 'rents. That really would be stretching their tolerance."
"You are so full of bullshit tonight."
"It's because I'm on home territory. That's all."
"And a promise." Both boys grinned. They finished dressing, Toby in a green and blue checked shirt and Oscar in a red and black checked one. Followed by Tilly, they locked up and went along to the main house to eat.
Supper really was a 'getting to know you' session. Oscar was surprised how much Toby had already told his parents, furthermore how they had come to accept their relationship. "When Toby came out," said Florence, "we were surprised, yet not surprised. We'd noticed little signs. Like most parents we hoped it might be a phase. It gave us time to do a little research."
"We didn't know any other parents with gay sons," said Richard. "The internet helped us, but when we discovered the Queen's School, that was progress indeed. Except it meant the difference between Toby's education and a new BMW. That's a joke by the way, boys." Both boys smiled, Oscar in good humour, Toby out of pity.
"I don't know what it was," said Oscar, "but Toby and I hit it off together when we first met at that Open Day."
"And neither of us knew for certain at the time that we'd be going there."
"You were out by then, Oscar?" asked Richard.
"Oh, yes, but my parents needed a bit of persuading. About the school, I mean, not about me being out. They didn't like the idea of a 'gay school'. I explained that only a tenth of the pupils were gay and according to statistics that was true of any school, but at Queen's everyone was open about it and they know how to treat gay pupils."
"In the same way as they know how to treat people who are good at maths, or music."
"Or sport," added Oscar.
"Double whammy for you, Toby," commented his father.
The small talk continued and no one noticed how quickly the clock was going round. "Mum, Dad, we're feeling a bit knackered. Do you mind if we go to bed now?"
"That's fine," said Mrs Awnott.
"Would you lads like a round of golf tomorrow?"
"Not at half past seven in the morning, thanks, Dad. Maybe next Saturday."
"Do you play golf, Oscar?"
"No, but I'm always ready to learn, Richard."
"We've still got my old clubs in the loft somewhere." The boys said good night and Tilly had to be held back so that she didn't sneak into the granny flat with them.
February is an undependable month. It can be misty, cold, miserable and rainy. It can be the herald of an early spring, warm with lots of sun. It can snow, but once the snow is down become as warm as an Alpine resort. The only thing you can depend on is that the days at the end of the month are noticeably longer than those at the beginning. This year it was the third sort. On Saturday it snowed heavily and on Sunday the sky was blue, the air still and the sun warm. It made the boys wind down. Living as they did on the edge of the town and in the countryside, not far from the main road, the Awnotts enjoyed the best of all worlds. There was no point in attempting to go anywhere that Sunday. The council will have cleared and gritted the roads in time for work on Monday. The best advice was to stay put and enjoy. There was plenty of food in the pantry, still more in the freezer.
If the boys thought they were going to have a lie-in, they were mistaken. There is nothing brighter than sunlight beating down on the snow and being reflected up again, and if that didn't work, there was an excited Tilly who had already gambolled through the freshly fallen snow, rolled in it and was now barking outside the bedroom window of the granny flat. She jolly well knew who was inside. Toby rang through on the house phone to tell his mother that he and Oscar were getting up. With Tilly getting excited outside, there was no way that they were going to settle down to a passionate session of love-making. Toby omitted to mention that to his mother. After hanging up he went to the front door, still naked, and opened it. Tilly came in and immediately shook all the water and loose snow in her coat over him. Oscar collapsed with a fit of the giggles, but then she straightaway came up to him, put her paws on his chest and started licking his face, while he experienced the benefit of her cold, wet underbody against his lower body.
Showered and dressed, Oscar and Toby presented themselves in the kitchen for breakfast. It was a leisurely occasion, but both boys knew there was work to be done afterwards as they set to, helping Richard to clear a path from the garage to the road for the car, then along the pavement. Their work was rewarded with large mugs of hot chocolate and biscuits. "So much for the golf this morning, Dad," said Toby.
"Hmm," replied Richard. "The trouble is the greenkeeper will keep us off until the snow has completely gone. But that's what we pay him for, I suppose. What are you two boys planning to do for the rest of the day?"
"We're going to build a snowman," said Oscar.
"Then this afternoon we want to go into town to get some new clothes," said Toby.
"But we're in the middle our growth spurt. Do you think it will be safe to go?"
"Providing the buses are running."
"You don't think that I'm taking the BMW out in this unless it's an absolute emergency."
"What about Mum's car?"
"You've got a whole week ahead of you to do shopping. Anyway, you'll have grown another inch by next weekend." Toby knew that was the end of that discussion.
Once they'd forgotten that it was rather unsophisticated for fourteen year olds to be building a snowman and chucking snowballs, the boys thoroughly enjoyed themselves. Tilly was always there to lend a helping paw. She needed a walk, but that possibility was rather limited in these conditions. Once the snowman was dressed in scarf, hat, had two pieces of coal for eyes and a carrot for a nose, which first had to be hastily removed from the groin before Mrs Awnott saw it, he was ready. "We need a parsnip rather than a carrot for there," Toby grumbled. They were called in for a snack lunch which started off with homemade thick, piping hot vegetable soup with crusty bread. After lunch Oscar and Toby went off for a 'rest' in the granny flat, making sure that Tilly was securely kept back in the main house.
Over the weekend Oscar and Toby were kids again with no worries, nobody to impress, no status to uphold. They didn't even think of their love life. There would be plenty of time for that in the week. They were always together at school, but this was different; they were together alone. Toby's parents didn't count as far as their being alone. They found they could do silly things together, laugh and giggle whenever they wanted to, whether anything funny happened or not. Imagine two colts dashing round a field, embodying joie de vivre . That's the way they chased one another, exchanging chaste kisses and not so chaste kisses, touching each other, not having to worry whether people were looking. Their carefree mood banished the tribulations and tiredness of term time.
By Monday most of the snow had melted and civic life returned to weekday normality. A late breakfast had given way to a walk in the country with Tilly, an exploratory one for Oscar led by the other two.
During the week Oscar and Toby managed their shopping trip. "So what have you got to get, Oscar?"
"I want to see what they've got in the trouser department."
"Nothing new there then."
"Piss off, Awnott. You can talk. Also for school some socks and a pair of black shoes and some trainers. Cross-country takes quite a toll on your trainers and I can almost feel my feet growing."
"You know what they say – big feet, big cock. So what happened with you?"
"You've never complained before."
"Only a joke, Oscar," and Toby put his arm round him.
"Your feet are quite small, Tobes."
"I may be small, but I'm perfect in every detail."
"You sure are. Give me a hug."
The boys took the bus into town and wandered round the high street and mall. Then they went and sat in the main square and spent some time boywatching. "So, Oscar, have you seen anything you like yet?"
"I rather like that kid over there with the scooter and the jet black hair." Toby pushed his shoulder and exclaimed
"Plonker! I meant clothes."
"I like those very thin trousers, the black ones with narrow legs. In fact, I really fancy you in them, too."
"They'll make us look like emo boys."
"Emo boys? I find emo boys quite a turn on. I think if I went to my sister's school, I'd be an emo boy. I'd have to have my hair dyed black instead blond and they'd have to straighten it out."
"What is your natural colour?"
"Alison calls it mousy, which I gather is not particularly complimentary."
"Depends what sort of mouse I suppose. I only ever saw your hair natural that once, that time on Open Day and when I was looking at you, it wasn't your hair that was taking my attention."
"So I'll start off with trousers, but I really want to buy clothes when we're in Canada."
"Okay. I'll get a pair of trousers the same and let's get the same tops – corporate identity."
"Wow! That'll be quite a turn on, too, Tobes. I'm chubbing up just thinking about it."
They went back into the mall, found what they wanted and added a red neckerchief with white polka dots to the ensemble. Then they went off for a milkshake.
At dinner that night the Awnotts complimented the two boys on how smartly they were turned out in their new clothes. "That was praise indeed," said Toby after they had said good night to Richard and Florence and were on their way back to the granny flat, "especially coming from my father." It had gone eleven. The family had finished eating by half past seven and once everything was cleared away the four sat around and chatted, and played Scrabble. "What are we going to do now?"
"Do you feel tired, Tobes?"
"Not really, Oscar."
"Then let's just lie on the bed together and talk about what comes up." Toby giggled. They took their trainers and socks off. Toby put his socks to his nose.
"Yeuk, horrible. You try them," and he threw then across to Oscar, hitting him in the face with them.
"If you do that again, I shall pull my underpants over your head."
"Now you're talking. I can't think of anything that would give me greater pleasure… apart from sex, of course."
"Talking of which, what is the filthiest, most revolting thing you can think of?"
"Easy peasy. Felching Jackman," said Oscar. "What about you?"
"Being tied down and having Jackman piss on my face."
"C'mon, Oscar, let's think of more pleasant things and then I want to make love to you." Oscar made to take his new trousers off. "Leave them on, luv. It's going to be a great challenge, getting those off."
The week long idyll soon came to an end. The boys could act that much more naturally. It was not all romantic moments. It was learning to live together in a domestic situation. If you love or like someone, you love him for, or despite, his faults. It was a time of discovery and developing tolerance. By Sunday both boys considered they had passed the test.
On Sunday it was early lunch. The boys had to be delivered back to Queen's in time to get changed and go to chapel. No need to worry about supper for they were going to call in at Oscar's grandparents' to say hello and the cup of tea would include freshly baked scones, not to mention two goodie bags to accompany the ones Florence Awnott had prepared. They were lucky to find Alison in a good mood. It went unsaid of course, but Rick must have been on good form the previous evening. You could read Alison like a book. Florence had stayed at home, ostensibly to look after Tilly and so during the car journey Richard took the opportunity to have a man to man chat with the two boys as well as discuss the arrangements for the forthcoming Canada trip. Was their relationship permanent, at least as far as they could see, what would they do when the time came to leave Queen's, perhaps an unfair question to put to fourteen year old boys for whom four years in the future were and eternity. He didn't want to interfere in their relationship, but were they taking the health issues into account? He and Toby's mother, like the Daintrees, had accepted that they were sexually active. Wasn't he at their age?
They made it to the Hounslows in good time. Again it was not just a social call, but arrangements for the Easter holidays had to be discussed and finalised. Finally Richard deposited the boys back at Tippett, had a quick word with Mr Forrester before climbing into his black BMW for the long haul home. All in all, he felt satisfied that he and Florence were doing the best they could for their son, and maybe for their future son-in-law.
The School re-assembled in Chapel after half term. It was after sunset, although with the onset of February there was still a glow in the sky. The pupils looked more relaxed, healthier. In one respect the pupil body acted as one. They were awaiting the entrance of Jackman, only to be disappointed. Past form had shown that he was quite capable of cutting chapel, but you simply do not take that risk when you return from suspension. Suspensions were so rare at the Queen's School, being expelled even rarer, that they could not fail to arouse the interest of the masses. The service began, the Headmaster welcomed the pupils back collectively and he would have words for individuals as they left. After the blessing the School filed out.
"Hey, Oscar, let's take the scenic route back to Tippett."
"Sure. You're not feeling horny again, are you, Tobes?"
"You should know by now that I never stop feeling randy, even when I've just pulled out after one of our long sessions."
"Especially when you've just pulled out. No wonder I get so tired. Sleep deprivation it's called, a form of torture and illegal under human rights legislation."
"That aside, I want to see if anything's going on at the holly bush."
"You think Jackman cut chapel?"
"Dunno. Got an open mind on that one."
It was an unusually balmy evening for the time of year, the sort that heralds the imminent arrival of spring. As Oscar and Toby were approaching the holly bush, they could hear the telltale sounds of a human presence. They looked at each other, communicated telepathically and carried out their well rehearsed pincer movement. They didn't know whether they were surprised or not. They certainly did not find Jackman, but Huw Fortinbrass. He, on the other hand, was surprised. "Waiting for someone?" enquired Toby casually.
"What does 'sort of' mean?" said Oscar.
"Well, sort of," mumbled Huw.
"C'mon, Huw," said Toby. "You've been busted. You may as well come clean."
"Are you two walking back to the house?"
"We were hoping to have a quick snog before Prayers," said Oscar, "but the mood seems to have passed."
"You speak for yourself," retorted Toby.
"Okay, lads. I was hoping to see Michael… I mean Jackman. You know, just to see if he was all right after being suspended."
"Yeah, we know," said Toby "and get quick shag."
"Well, maybe that too."
"Because you didn't get any over half term."
"That's not quite true 'cos I went cottaging, Nearly got caught, but that's another story. Because I couldn't see him in chapel, I thought I might just be sitting in the wrong place and he was in the gallery above my pews. I also thought that if Jackman wasn't back I might meet somebody else – you know, any port in a storm."
"Porthole," interrupted Oscar facetiously.
"Anyway, looks as if it'll have to be Madam Palm and her five sons tonight."
"Have you tried asking your mentor?" said Oscar.
"That I hadn't thought of."
"As long as he hasn't got a boyfriend already," added Toby.
"What I was thinking," said Huw, "and this is for your ears only until I'm sure, whether Jackman's come back or not, I could take over his business, so to speak."
"So you don't think he's coming back?" asked Oscar incisively.
"I didn't say that," answered Huw defensively, "but he's obviously not here."
"Tell me, Huw," said Toby, "did you use a rubber when you went cottaging?"
"Of course I did. I might be a slut, but I'm not a stupid slut."
Meanwhile the trio had arrived back at Tippett. "Early tonight, lads?" said the prefect on duty.
"Bit difficult having a threesome in the dark," answered Toby drily. With that Oscar and Toby knew they were locked back into routine – Prayers, mentor chat, Oscar skyping his parents with the expurgated version of what he got up to at the Awnotts', getting ready for school.
On the Monday morning Oscar and Toby walked across to breakfast together. It was raining and so there was little point in hanging around. They look around the dining hall, but still no sign of Jackman. A buzz of excitement, however, was going round the school at lunchtime for Jackman had been sited, but a Jackman who was scarcely recognisable. Our boys were in a different sitting from Jackman and therefore they would not expect see him. So they resolved to take the scenic route back to Tippett after school to see if he was back up to his old tricks again.
After school they went to the dining hall for a mug of tea and a doughnut. Over the weeks Monday tea had grown into a little gathering of intimates. Oscar and Toby had become gurus in their own right, at least among the juniors. They would be joined by the people they had helped or they had recruited to help. What better tribute? It also proved that whatever impression the story of the exploits so far may have given, they were not two boys turned in on themselves, but popular and outgoing members of the community, concerned about the their fellows.
The tea party slowly broke up as the kitchen staff cleared up around them and boys went off to start their prep or to their after-school activities. "I wonder whether the holly bush is in operation," said Toby as our two left the dining hall.
"Let's go and find out," said Oscar. They started out on the scenic route back to Tippett. To begin with they fixed their eyes on the holly bush, but then they saw Huw Fortinbrass sitting on the bench talking to someone they didn't at first recognise, but suddenly came to realise that it was the new Jackman that everyone was talking about. His school uniform was neat and clean, he had had his hair cut and washed. He looked an all-round healthier human being.
"My, his half term seems to have done him good," said Toby. As they approached, they heard the tail end of a conversation.
"… and I don't like these underpants they're making me wear, either."
"Hi, guys," said Oscar and Toby. "Trade bad today?"
"And you two can fuck off, as well."
"Oh, good afternoon, Michael," said Oscar.
"And we hope you had a great half term, as well," said Toby. "Thank you for asking."
"I had a bloody awful half term," scowled Jackman. "I was suspended, remember?" Meanwhile Huw was making signs behind Jackman's back to shut up about the holidays.
"Well, as the holly bush seems to be free," said Oscar, "you don't mind if we use it, do you?" With no answer forthcoming Oscar took Toby's hand and led him behind the tree.
When they came out the bench had been vacated. "If you keep doing that to me, Toby Awnott, underpants are going to be at the top of my shopping list for Canada."
"Why wait until then?"
"Because the cotton's noticeably thicker and will soak up my juices better. I prefer moist to wet."
Oscar and Toby got on with their prep and for once had it finished by supper. While they were walking across to the dining hall, Huw Fortinbrass caught up with them. "Hey, lads, can I sit with you two over supper? I think there are certain things you ought know. I don't know if I'm supposed to tell you, but they're important." An offer their aroused curiosity could scarcely refuse.
The three reached the dining hall, joined the queue, selected their food and found a table away from the main throng. "So what's this important stuff you've got to tell us, Huw?" said Oscar.
"Is it about Jackman?" said Toby. Huw nodded.
"Okay, confidential. I hope you do confidential." They nodded again. Huw lowered his voice in a conspiratorial manner. "Michael, er… Jackman nearly got slung out over that business with Ross Pike. He was allowed back under certain strict conditions and because he preferred to be here than to live with his aunt, it was a no-brainer. Basically, he had to clean up his act and no sex."
"But that's asking the impossible," said Toby.
"Wait and I'll tell you what's made the impossible possible. The easy bit. Although he's still resident in School House, he has to get dressed in the morning, and changed for games under Matron's supervision to make sure he showers and keeps himself clean, wears underclothes and changes his clothes regularly."
"Well, that's reasonable," said Oscar.
"I haven't finished. Over half term he was in hospital where they circumcised him "for medical reasons – a phimosis."
"But that won't lower his sex drive," said Toby.
"No, but it will help his personal hygiene. And "for medical reasons" again he has to have an injection at the beginning of each half term that stops him getting erections – and they work. Chemical castration they call it."
"And if he doesn't?"
"Goodbye Queen's, hallo auntie."
"And if he reports it to the authorities?"
"Nothing. It's all been done with his and his legal guardian's consent, signed and sealed, and if he wants to push his luck, the Pike incident gets reported to the police as historical sex abuse, which the police seem to be rather keen on these days."
"Wow, they've got him well and truly stitched up," said Toby.
"And the school will be a better place for it," added Oscar, and they high fived.
"He said it was all arranged between the school doctor and a surgeon who are both old boys. It was done privately to avoid any delay, and do you know what? It was paid for by the Old Queens out of a special fund they keep for pupils in need."
"And now you've taken over his business, Huw?"
"Almost, but Jackman doesn't know it… yet."
"You're not doing this for money, are you?" asked Oscar.
"No, of course not. Jackman didn't either. You see. I did a bit of research on this. Me and Jackman are what's called satyromaniacs. You've heard of nymphomaniacs?"
"My sister's one," mumbled Oscar in an unguarded comment.
"Well, a satyromaniac is the male equivalent. It's just that men are expected to be like that anyway and so it doesn't get talked about. We need lots of sex. I certainly do. By the way, guys, are you doing anything before Prayers?"
"Thanks, but no thanks," replied Toby. "We're a happily married couple."
"Sorry. I should have known better. No offence?"
"No," said Oscar. "We have to turn down more offers than you can shake a dick at."
"It's just that I'm a bit desperate at the moment and jerking myself off just doesn't do it for me any more. Back to my little enterprise. That's why I'm keen to do it. Not for money. I'll put my hand up to being a slut, but I'm not a prostitute and I only do boys I fancy."
"Like Jackman?" said Toby.
"In a funny sort of way, yes. He always intrigued me. Still does. I'm probably the only friend he has in the school."
"In the world," said Oscar. "But then he did get on with Jimmy Butterfield rather well."
"I'm still half expecting him to ask me to pound his butt. As far as the business is concerned I'll just make sure I run it more discreetly, and certainly not from the holly bush." He started to whisper. "Hey, I don't suppose you two could lend me some condoms?"
"Sorry, mate… ha ha, Mates." Oscar giggled at his own joke. The other two looked at him blankly. "Because we're monogamous, we never use 'em."
"But if you go along to the STI clinic at the hospital, they'll give them to you free. You just have to tell them that you're gay and promiscuous…"
"Spread it about a bit," said Oscar.
"Ah, why didn't you say that?"
"… and they'll do everything to help," continued Toby, "and it's all confidential."
"Just don't go in school uniform."
The three cleared the table and put their trays onto the trolley and made to leave. "Are you two sure you don't want do anything before Prayers?" Oscar and Toby ignored the question. "If you can put any punters my way, lads…"
"Give us some business cards, Huw, and we'll leave them by the telephones," said Oscar sarcastically.
"Why don't you just stand up and announce it in Prayers?" said Toby equally sarcastically.
"You know, I might just do that."
Even in a school of seven hundred and fifty young souls, the majority of the time is taken up with dull routine. The Jackman incident was soon forgotten. The collective memory is short. Our boys concentrated on their schoolwork. Toby still had to fund his flight to Canada. He worked to establish himself in the U14 hockey A XI. After all, that is what the school was paying him to do. Oscar recognised his own talent for cross-country and was working hard to improve it. It was a talent that Queen's had discovered and along with middle distance running in athletics were the only sports in which he excelled over Toby. Their love life was improving by the day, their sex life limited, especially contrasted with the opportunities during half term, by the exigencies of school. How they longed to be promoted into the fourth form so that they would have their own studies and the privacy that came with them. The second exeat spent at the grans' came and went and both boys were excitedly looking forward to spending the Easter holidays in Vancouver.
One Saturday Toby was standing under the shower in the pavilion enjoying the glow that comes with victory in a hard fought hockey match. "Awnott, tell me." He peered through the steam towards where the voice was coming from. It was Jim Watts, a hairy arsed six former who regularly played in the 1 st XI. He should have been in Tippett, except he was one of those teens – we've all met them – who never admit to being gay or bi, but who have a regular girlfriend at home, but need younger boys at school to compensate for lack of hetero sex. "Why do you shave your pubic hair?"
"To make myself more attractive," Toby answered in a non-committal way.
"Does it work?" said Watts.
"Well, it attracted you. Why?"
"I want to wank you off."
"Tell it as it is, why don't you?" Meanwhile they had attracted the attention of others in the shower room. "Sorry, Watts. My love life is a little more sophisticated than a quick grope and a wank. Anyway, I'm off into town with my boyfriend after tea. I think I'll save myself for him."
"Cheeky little sod. I am a prefect, you know."
"I don't. You're not wearing your prefect's badge." Meanwhile all those around were laughing, with Toby and at Watts.
"I don't wear it in the shower," he said lamely.
"If you really want to have a third former, there's a kid in Tippett House called Fortinbrass. He'll sort you out," at which Toby minced as tartily as he could out of the shower room and went to towel down and get dressed.
Later when they were walking into town, Oscar and Toby had a good laugh at the incident and at Watts's expense. "You should have told him I don't like having my teeth flossed during sex," said Oscar. "If it didn't gross him out, it would have at least shown him that we're not beginners."
"I'd heard of his reputation before," said Toby. "He got caught behind the Corps hut wanking off a third former. The boy wasn't even in Tippett."
"They ought to build an annexe to Tippett 'cos it's becoming obvious that there are undreamt of numbers of gay and bi boys in the other houses."
"Yeah, but they're all in the closet."
"Now there's an interesting little project for us."
"Wot, outing the boys still in the closet?"
"Not so much outing them," said Oscar. "Just us finding out who they are and maybe giving them a hand with their sexuality."
"Good choice of words," chuckled Toby.
At last the holidays had come. The boys filed into chapel for the end of term service. Toby waved to his parents who were sitting at the back with the other attendant parents. Oscar gave them a wave too. When the service had ended, the exit was a little more hurried than on a Sunday evening. However, the Headmaster was there with the Chaplain to wish boys and parents a Happy Easter. Oscar and Toby soon met up with the Awnotts afterwards and the four walked back to Tippett. "Who's picking you up, Oscar?" enquired Florence Awnott.
"Gramps. I'll meet him in the visitors' car park. There's no hurry for us. We've got less than ten miles to go."
"That's where we're parked," said Richard Awnott.
"Perhaps we'll catch him and we can have a few words," said Mrs Awnott. "Make sure everything's all right for Canada."
"And the return," said Toby "as I won't have time to come home when we get back."
After collecting their belongings from Tippett, the four gathered in the car park where Gramps was conveniently parked next to the Awnotts' BMW. "See you haven't changed your wheels yet, Mr Awnott. Still waiting for that offer." Everyone looked round to see a grinning Nik Ogen drooling over the BMW.
"Hi, Nik," said Richard. "You'll have to wait until the ashtrays are full before I get rid of it."
Having finished their chat, Toby got into the BMW and Oscar got into Gramps's car and they headed for home. When they arrived, Oscar gave his grandmother the obligatory kiss and hug. He was happier with the latter. She could give him some overdue TLC before Alison got home.
The next day Oscar was in town for a visit to his hairdresser and some last minute shopping. "So where's your friend, Master Oscar?" said Marcel.
"He's had to go home to get ready."
"Yes. We're off to Canada for the school hols. My parents work and live in Vancouver and he's coming with me to meet them."
"And have some fun, I hope?"
"We don't have to go to Vancouver to have fun," replied Oscar and suddenly felt that he might have said too much.
"Your secret is safe with me, Master Oscar. Do tell Master Toby that he has wonderful hair and it's a pleasure to work with it. You're a lucky lad, you know."
"I know," answered Oscar sincerely.
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