by George Gauthier

Chapter 4

Calico Cat

"Er, Troy, you aren't allergic to cats, are you?"

"No, not at all, Kyle. In fact, I am quite fond of cats. I'm still new to the building so I am not sure I really want to adopt a kitten. Why do you ask?"

"It's my brother Corwin, or rather his cat. His company is sending him abroad for a couple of years to their subsidiary in Luxembourg. Immigration there won't let him bring a cat into their country, so he asked me to take her in and give her a home, at least till he gets back."


"Yes, she's a calico cat, a female two years old."

"Well she would be, female that is. Calicos have to be females, don't they?"

"No, not quite. It's rare mutation, but some males have two X chromosomes and one Y. It's the X or female chromosome which determines fur color, hence a male with two Xs can have a coat of two colors, in other words a calico cat."

"I yield to your scientific expertise. You have a good heart Kyle, taking this cat into your home. Otherwise the poor thing might have to be sent to the vet to be put down. "

"There is one problem though. Esmeralda is an outdoor cat; she has never been confined indoors. Corwin lives in an old farm house on the edge of town so the cat comes and goes freely through a small swinging door."

"OK, I'm following you so far, so what's the problem?"

"My apartment is on the third floor, just below yours, so for her to have outdoor access I need to build a cat ladder so she can come and go as and when she wants to. I am handy enough with tools to put one together by myself, but installing it is a two man job."

Kyle explained how house cats in Europe use narrow ladders or ramps to access windows in apartments higher than ground level, ramps too small and flimsy for a burglar to take advantage of. The structures reach to the ground or to a nearby tree.

"Actually Kyle, a cat ladder might not be necessary. I can offer another solution, a better one all around. What would you say if I told you that there was a way a cat living on the third floor or even up here on the fourth could come and go freely without using a cat ladder at all?"

"I would be very interested. Tell me more."

"I'll gladly tell you all about it, but first you must swear to keeping a secret that not even your brother can know."

"Even though Corwin will be out of the country entirely?"

"Even so. As Benjamin Franklin once remarked, Three can keep a secret...but only if two of them are dead."

"Old Ben did have a way with words, didn't he? OK, Troy. I give you my word. Now that I am cleared for the big reveal, lay it on me."

"You know that saying about big old houses like this spooky old mansion of ours, that they are 'just honeycombed with secret passages'." Well it's true about this place too, and I found the secret passages. I even have a map."


I showed my friend the building plans and gave him a tour of the servant runs. We rigged a cat door between his apartment and the passageways. After Esmeralda moved in and got settled in Kyle's apartment, we introduced her to the servant runs, the spiral staircase, and a concealed cat doorway in the basement I had fixed up. She learned her way around readily enough.

I later installed a cat door to my own apartment on the fourth floor, giving Esmeralda free access. So she had the run of both our places. Kyle was her principal caregiver and fed her twice a day. She came to me looking for companionship when Kyle was not around and for cat treats.

Her favorite snack was a smidgeon of yogurt which I gave her whenever I opened a cup of yogurt for myself. Before stirring the fruit on the bottom I would scoop out her share and gave it to her on a saucer.

Much as she loved the stuff she insisted on company while she licked away. I had to take a knee and stroke her as she crouched down and consumed the tangy treat, with her purring softly all the while, pausing from time to time to look up at me in gratitude. After I ate the main portion of the yoghurt, I had to hold the empty cup atop the table as she jumped up and poked her muzzle into it to lick whatever clung to the insides. After which she sat upright and licked her chops, which I always thought looked really cute.

It hadn't taken long for the personable calico cat to put us both under her spell, curling up in our laps, so soft and warm and furry, not to mention affectionate and ever so cute. And yes, cats do get into mischief, but isn't that just part of their charm?

Look what happens when you yell at your cat for some act of destructive mischief. She runs off and hides giving you a chance to cool off, and, when the clever little minx figures the time is right, she reappears and goes on a blatantly manipulative charm offensive: purring, kneading, and marking you with the scent glands in her cheeks. And of course you cave. After all, if you were not susceptible to a feline charm offensive, you wouldn't be living with a cat in the first place.

So it proved with Esmeralda.

So now we were a threesome. Two boys and their companionable calico cat.

"Do ever wonder what our friendly calico cat thinks about Troy? She sits there so quietly, watching us with those big green eyes of hers, paws tucked under, tail curled around, sometimes cocking an ear to catch a sound. Whatever must she think of us as she watches us making love?"

"Hmmm, I would not be surprised if she wondered why her two caregivers spend so much of their time and energy trying to make kittens. How things were so much more reasonable with the cat tribe because they were not perpetually in heat. Their mating urges came upon them only periodically, with the rest of their life sensibly devoted to hunting, playing, eating, and sleeping plus getting into mischief when no one is looking."

"It's likely quite beyond her to figure how two males like us expect to engender offspring no matter how often we mount each other. It just wouldn't work, not with two toms. Yet here the two of us keep on trying despite a complete lack of success."

Kyle chuckled.

"I think you've got her figured out exactly right. Isn't that so, Esmeralda?"

But of course, our calico cat said nothing. She just blinked and continued to look lovely and inscrutably enigmatic.

Chamber Boy

One of the best amenities in our spooky old mansion is the house keeping service. Except for the neat freaks among us, most gay guys don't care much for housework. All the tedium of dusting and scrubbing and sweeping and mopping, doing the laundry, and afterwards spending time folding socks and underwear we consider all that so much time lost to drudgery. Of course, being gay we do like things nice and neat. We are fine with the result, the process not so much.

It's just bearable if you live alone and in a small apartment and cannot afford to hire someone to take the drudgery off your hands, but for our full-sized units our building offers an alternative – full housekeeping services, except for cooking, provided by cute chamber boys. It's an extra service and quite pricy but more than worth it. At least to me.

The chamber boy for the two top floors in our building is Jaeden, a blond twink as pretty as you could ever wish for. Indeed he gives me a run for my money. That morning Jaeden, was waiting just outside, as he did three days a week, poised to start his chores: cleaning, sweeping, dusting, scrubbing, mopping, watering the plants, polishing, taking out the laundry, and generally straightening up, with special attention to the hygiene of the tiled water closets and showers. He doesn't cook but he does do the dishes, with the help of an automatic dishwasher.

Only this day there was something different about the boy: his manner of dress or rather undress. Instead of a short-sleeved jumpsuit the twink was dressed, if you could call it that, in a pair of abbreviated bicycle shorts – very low rise, very tight, and with a short inseam. They are made of an airy, lightweight, porous, and sheer fabric at once both tan-thru and very nearly see-thru. It is only the colorful patterns printed on the fabric which fool the eye into focussing on the colorful surface rather than on the nude body underneath, keeping the garment from being truly scandalous. The cloth is surprisingly tough given how tiny a ball of cloth those shorts can be compressed into. There is practically nothing to the exiguous garment but color, perforations, and air. Shorts and low-top shoes with grippy soles for traction on wet surfaces, no socks. that's it. That was all our chamber boy was wearing.

Not that I was complaining. I was happy that so much more of Jaeden's physique was visible. Those short sleeve jumpsuits covered up all too much, though Jaeden had the delightful habit of zipping the front open to his waist, baring his chest, for the ventilation he would explain. Right. Now that I could see practically all of him, the boy was fashionably glabrous, without even a hint of body hair, even, as I learned later, down there at the fork of his legs.

Before I could ask, Jaeden supplied the answer to my unspoken question.

"It's my new work uniform sir, such as it is. All three of us chamber boys wear these clingy shorts now instead of a jumpsuit. Our work gets us very wet and sweaty, and this brief garment is an accommodation to our working conditions. The cloth is so insubstantial that it can soak up hardly any water and it wicks sweat away. Yet it preserves the decorum in the building. I know that a lot of the residents are casual about nudity, but that would not be proper for staff."

"These shorts are practical and discreet despite being almost totally revealing if you could look under the surface. I mean from the way it molds to my body you can hardly tell that I am not totally naked. It makes me feel so titillatingly naughty. Gosh, does that make me a shameless exhibitionist?"

"Yes it does, which is very much to your credit, Jaeden. To my way of thinking, a boy as pretty as you are practically has an obligation to share his beauty and sex appeal with the world at large. I can hardly wait to come upon you scrubbing the floor on your knees, all bent over, your delightful rump presented as if for service."

"Please! Don't get me going, or this airy fabric won't be able to contain me, if you take my meaning."

I chuckled and gave the chamber boy a friendly pat on the rump, then went downstairs.

"I hope you were just being friendly back there with Jaeden." Kyle told me as we went down the stairs."

"The building has a non-fraternization policy under which the help is strictly off-limits, chamber boys and garden assistants both. That policy protects the boys from importunate guests and removes any temptation on their part to moonlight as rent boys. The policy also safeguards the building's sterling reputation as an upmarket residence for persons of means, rather than some downmarket, low rent, no-tell-hotel cum boy brothel."

"Fine but the boy is a shameless exhibitionist, you gotta admit that."

"No he is not, and neither are you Troy".

"How can you say that, Kyle? You see me all the time sunning on the roof or lounging out back reading a book all the while in the nude. If that is not gratuitous exhibitionism then what is?"

"Gratuitousness I will grant you but not shamelessness. The fact is that when you run around in the altogether you get a thrill precisely because you are not shameless. You know perfectly well that what you are doing is terribly naughty and violates the nudity taboos you yourself were brought up with, however liberated from them you claim to be now. That is where the thrill or titillation comes from, that you do in fact feel a bit of shame and relish it for that very reason. You also halfway wish that your uninhibited display would draw a rebuke from the outraged citizenry who would delight in witnessing some stern master taking a switch to your bare rump for the shame of it all. Admit it."

"Hmmm. You may have something there Kyle. I'll have to ponder my own psyche for a bit. Meanwhile I'll drop the phrase "shameless exhibitionist" from my vocabulary."

Kyle might be right about boys like Jaeden but he was quite mistaken about the supposed nudity taboos I was brought up with. Ancient Troy had little use for prudery and none at all with little kids. No one thought anything of the little ones running around bare-ass without garments which would only get dirty and have to be laundered in the laborious ways of the day. And once I grew into a teen and came into "bloom" my father the king made sure that it was clothing that was taboo for me, not nudity, all the better to display me as potential reward for successful generals, officials, and courtiers.


"What do you think we're running here, kid, your own personal post office?"

My boss was on the warpath, glaring at me, blaming me for the flood of fan mail we got at the gay bar where I did my nude pole dancer cum contortionist act. Photos and videos of my performances had gone viral, but all my fan mail had to come to the club's address since we never give out the home addresses of the staff.

"Can you believe it? Some of your fans want us to send them 8 by 10 inch glossies for free and expect us to pay the postage to boot. Oh, and they don't want just headshots but full body photos of you in one of your sexy poses."

Shaking his head for effect in exaggerated disbelief he added:

"As if we would give out stuff just for the asking. And we don't do snail mail orders which come in without a stamped self-addressed return envelope. They can order pix and other merchandise on our website, stuff they damn well are gonna pay for, postage included, whether by credit card or debit card. I mean, what am I running here, an f'n charity?"

That was my boss Nigel Dalgleish. Sometimes irate and blustery but really not a bad guy. He just had a short fuse and was overly fond of rhetorical questions.

I shrugged it off. All that bluster was just his way of letting off steam from the press of an often hectic business, so it was nothing personal. The guy paid us well and promptly on payday, and, compared to so many others in the business, was scrupulous about the share-out of tips, holding none back for the house. All tips went to the workers.

My boss did have a point and not only about the volume of fan mail. I myself had to shake my head at some of the more brazen and even outrageous fan mail such as requests for assignations, private lap dances, and even proffers of marriage.

I was tempted by offers of well-paid work as a male model, but I had no way to judge which offers were legit, so I got a talent agent.

He sorted out offers of legitimate modeling work from questionable proposals by unknown amateurs who wanted me to model for porn (aka filthy pictures). No, thank you. I took gigs in high fashion photo shoots, spreads, and videos where my role was not so much to wear their fancy threads as to catch the eye of potential customers, mostly by posing naked or next thing to it. For that purpose my sexy look was perfect: pretty face, hard body, smooth glabrous skin, and no tan lines which suggested a nature boy who must spend a lot of time communing with Mother Nature while being in a state of nature himself.

Male models seem to get three kinds of assignments. They can model normal clothes, like those anyone might wear. Or they can walk the runway at fancy shows, wearing those outrageous and utterly impractical outfits which no one in his right mind would ever wear in real life except maybe to a masquerade ball. It's such a shame to see good looking young guys hidden under a ton of fabric just for the sake of notoriety and cheap publicity. Now at five-three I was too short to wear the latest fashions whether on a runway or in front of the camera. Models need to be much the same size so that anyone can wear anything. In other words, you have to fit the model to the clothes rather than vice-versa.

Then there is modeling in the rude nude.

In more than one magazine spread I was paired with a young lady who looked elegant in a clinging black gown. Me? I was stark naked though with my near leg forward blocking the view of my dangly bits, with maybe only a rose blossom at my ear plus a necktie knotted loosely around my neck with her holding my leash like I was some slave boy. For another shoot I stood pressing my nude body to a fully clothed young lady whose arm reaches down to the fork of my legs, making it look like I was humping her while she was fondling me.

Another assignment sent me to the beach. There I was standing at the water's edge, while the photographer snapped dozens of shots of me while three lovely young ladies in bikinis held me prisoner while a fourth dragged a pair of white boxer shorts off my hips practically to my knees, so disclosing my manly attributes. The next pose in that photo shoot had us playing badminton while I lunged to bat the shuttlecock over the net. There too I was starkers with the fork of my legs front and center.

The silliest gig of all was what I called Purses on Parade. Now you would think that a designer wishing to show a collection of ladies purses would display them on a counter or a table and allow commercial buyers to step up close to get a look see. You can hardly judge a purse without full access, handling it, opening it, checking its features, and so forth.

Not for this collection. Here was the set up. Small white ladies purses carried by models who walk up and down the runway, the purses held up high by straps over the shoulder rather than in the hand and held down low enough to give the seated buyers at least a decent look. And the models? Not anorectic young ladies as you might expect but seven beautiful males, none over twenty-two, stalking along the runway stark naked. Yep, every swinging dick of us, literally.

My function as a male model in the world of high fashion was not to wear the designers' clothes or any clothes really, but to function as bare-ass eye candy. Absolutely silly, but hey, if they wanted to throw good money at me for easy work like that, who was I to object?

Anyway half of my earnings from modeling work went for anonymous donations to charities like one which helped low income tenants fight neglectful and rapacious landlords in court. The way rents have gone up in recent years is simply scandalous. So many of those who work at low-paying and low prestige jobs spend nearly half of their budgets on rent alone. It seems the economics are against inexpensive housing, and just try to get subsidized housing built in a decent neighborhood. You will see the NIMBYs come out in full force against.

Kyle made up a couple of scrapbooks of my fashion work, one hard copy, the other digital. We now considered ourselves lovers and no longer just friends with benefits. Which is why we so frequently spend the night in each other's beds – with Esmeralda usually making it a threesome. We did not move in together, our sleep schedules being just too different.

Fashion modeling is quite different from posing for a painter or a sculptor, something I had done before for some quite famous artists who immortalized me in bronze, marble, oil paints, chalks or even water colors. One such was the incomparable Master Leonardo.

Leonardo da Vinci

Just to be clear, "Leonardo" was not his first name nor was "Da Vinci" his surname. He was just Leonardo, full stop. Vinci, a small town in Tuscany, was his place of birth and was not a family name at all, though many surnames do derive from toponyms, such as Genovese from Genova (Genoa in English) or Calabrese from Calabria, the toe of the Italian boot.

Leonardo was a polymath, a true genius, accomplished not only in the arts of painting and sculpture, but also in civil and military engineering, architecture, mechanical invention, anatomy, astronomy, botany, cartography, painting, and even paleontology before it was called that.

We met in 1493, soon after Columbus' return from his first voyage to the New World and a year after the death of Lorenzo de' Medici, aka Lorenzo the Magnificent, the Florentine banker and patron of the arts, one of the leading lights of the Italian Renaissance. In those happy days of yore I called myself Alessandro, the Italian version of Alexander. It was so long ago now...

"Goosebumps! Why are you grumbling about goosebumps, Sandro? You should be warm enough in the afternoon sun. Hold your pose. Whatever you do, don't shiver; it's distracting."

"If I have goosebumps, Master Leonardo, it's for good reason. You are dressed for the fall weather, while I am trying to hold a pose while standing outdoors stark naked."

I did my best to comply with Master Leonardo's wishes but even in direct sunlight and with the heat reflected off the garden wall, October in Milano can be chilly, especially when you are in the nude. It did not help to have a physique as slight and slender as mine, one with such low body fat. No insulation at all.

That day I was the incarnation of the youth Acteon, depicted just before the vengeful Artemis magically changed the hunter into a stag, setting him up to be torn to pieces by his own hunting dogs. A classical subject like that was always a good excuse for Leonardo to pose me naked.

The depiction of male beauty was a major theme of ancient art, thankfully taken up again during what men even then were calling the Renaissance or the Revival of Learning. I had already modeled Leander, Narcissus, Hippolytus, Pyramus and Hylas – all young males from classical mythology and all with some plausible reason to be depicted in the nude. No silly fig leaves either.

The poses were varied. Leander is stepping forward but not fully upright as if just emerging from the water after swimming the Hellespont to visit his lover Hero (who sadly, despite the name, was a girl). Narcissus is on his knees admiring his reflection in a pool of water where he had gone to bathe. Hylas is bearing Hercules's heavy shield unburdened by anything else including the least scrap of clothing. Hercules liked him that way, a bum boy always conveniently to hand.

I understood that Ganymede would be the next subject, a case of Art Imitates Life in a way unsuspected by the artist himself since I really was Ganymede, the Ganymede of myth, sometime prince of Troy and cupbearer to the gods of Olympus, still alive after so many centuries.

I became a model for Leonardo partly by accident. We originally met as fellow engineers and inventors or tinkerer in my case, both of us admirers of the writings of the Roman engineer Vitruvius (1st century AD). I could speak authoritatively on how the Romans built their roads and bridges and aqueducts having seen the process with my own eyes, escorted to the worksite by a Roman army officer whose profession would now be described as that a civil engineer. He rather fancied me you see.

Of course I was nowhere near the master's level in mechanics; no one was, but I could understand his dreams and projects better than the artsy crowd around him, so we became friends.

Given Leonardo's taste in pretty youths, it wasn't long before he had me out of my clothes and into his bed. I like to think our relationship was a meeting of the minds as well as of the bodies, though he certainly liked my trim little figure. Our love affair lasted only a few short months till circumstances drew us apart, but it was as intense as any I ever had with a mortal.

At this time in his life, Leonardo was a vigorous forty-one, a man with tremendous strength in his upper body. He could easily lift me one-handed above his shoulder. As a reminder I am slightly built, standing only five foot three (16O cm), with a mere 110 pounds (50 kg) on my frame, though I had a fairly strong upper storey and a wiry musculature.

The master displayed similar strength and prowess in lovemaking – taking control of my limbs, spreading my body for his delectation, rolling me back on my shoulders into position for a good fuck. His masculinity aroused my deepest longings to surrender to his power, to be possessed and penetrated, impaled on his truncheon of a cock, shuddering and dizzy with arousal, moaning and whimpering as he used me.

I am by nature a sexual submissive and Leonardo was very much a master. With him I knew that I belonged on my knees worshiping his manhood or on all fours, like a dog of the streets, letting him thrust into me, finding my prostate with his long member, setting me to coming just from the vigor of his fucking. He always left me both satisfied and exhausted.

His patron was the Duke of Milano, Ludovico il Moro i.e. the Moor, so-called for his dark complexion. The master worked on a number of projects for Ludovico including a dome for the cathedral, floats and pageants for special occasions, and the clay model for a huge equestrian statue of Francesco Sforza, Ludovico's father and predecessor. Leonardo also painted the Last Supper, though little of his brush work has survived centuries of decay and inept restoration work. I cannot bear to look on the mutilated fresco myself.

Approaching chatter and footfalls announced the arrival of the duke and his entourage. We were in his garden after all so he had every right to just barge in on the proceedings. He looked me over, one eyebrow raised, studying me the way he might assess a new sculpture.

"So this is the beauteous blond boy I have been hearing about, the one you have had posing in my gardens in a state of nature. It seems that you would rather paint a nude of this shameless youth than finish that equestrian statue I commissioned. As your patron, I should be cross, but I suppose your infatuation with the lad is understandable given his extraordinary beauty of face and of form. It's almost enough to make me rethink my own preference for the female of the species."

What the duke saw was a comely youth, apparently of no more than seventeen summers and pretty as a girl with as flawless a complexion. I did not have the classic muscular physique of the Discus Thrower. I was quite slender and boyish – almost skinny, with narrow shoulders and a flat but corrugated chest and stomach sporting well-defined abdominals, prominent ribs and sharp hip bones. The tracery of veins on my forearms, calves, and belly showed how very little body fat I carried. I like to think my manhood is more than adequate but I wouldn't be scaring the horses. It takes both my small hands to cover an erection, but only one when it was soft. My face was comely with almost elfin features: a straight nose, high cheekbones, and large green eyes.

"I see that he is one of those plucked chickens, smooth all over, and not shy about it either, happy to strut about the grounds where anyone might gaze on his denuded form. I really don't understand the youth of today, disdaining that token of manhood." he sighed theatrically.

The duke was referring to my total lack of body hair.

"Ah, but Your Grace, you cannot believe how smooth it makes his skin feel, especially at night in the throes of passion, when he is all hot and slick with sweat from his exertions, as it were. And it is the right look for classical sculpture. The Greeks liked their boys smooth and glabrous making them look younger than their years, while the Romans disdained body hair as animalistic and plucked it regularly. They didn't have to worry about body lice either."

"Yes my friend, and those same Romans were said to bathe every day too, in public baths no less. But few in these modern times would care to emulate that unhealthful habit."

I knew better than to pipe up and point out that the duke went clean shaven himself, disdaining a beard, that most public token of manhood. A nobleman and ruler like the duke would not take kindly to being corrected much less twitted by a naked artist's model cum bum boy, which I so obviously was.

In those days sexual relations between males was both a sin and a crime everywhere in Italy however much the authorities might look the other way for artistic types with powerful patrons. I know Leonardo himself had been arrested for sodomy when in his twenties.

To titters from the ladies, the duke ran his hand down my chest and belly and groin, back to my rump, finally cupping my manhood momentarily, studying my genitals, though without any lascivious interest. He tut tutted then remarked

"Such a waste of breeding potential. The seepage of these spheres might easily sire a dozen beautiful children, six lovely lasses for men like me, and a like number of boys for those with your more refined tastes, Master Leonardo."

As Master Leonardo inclined his head to concede the point, the duke and his entourage moved on, not before more than a few hands caressed my butt cheeks in passing. After they left, Leonardo quipped.

"Well one thing is clear. He doesn't go for boys. Anyone who could fondle you so unfeelingly has no use for pretty youths. Good. I hate having to share."

"You old goat," I remonstrated, "describing how you feel me up when we are together in bed with a dozen people looking on and listening, all the while I am standing there stark naked, in mixed company, with my balls cupped in the Duke's hand, his thumb toying idly with my cock."

"And why should that faze you in the least, pretty one? The Duke's party numbered far fewer than the spectators who have ogled you from yon balcony these last three days. How can that embarrass you anyway, shameless boy that you are, bronzed all over from sailing the seas entirely bare ass. It's a wonder the crew didn't jump you and subjugate you to their lusts."

"That is because I am the shipowner, not some hapless cabin boy, Master Leonardo."

"How many ships do you have now, six? I envy you young Alessandro Caro, ship owner, merchant prince, and captain of your fate at such a tender age, Carino mio."

His pet name for me was a play on words. Carino, the diminutive of my assumed surname Caro, meant pretty one.

How ironic that I live on while, at the age of only sixty-seven, Master Leonardo, went to his grave. I felt his loss keenly, the loss of a man who deserved the grant of immortality far more than did a pretty bum boy like myself.

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