by Jeremy Myers


Back when I first wrote 'Logan' my intent always was to go no further than Chapter 16. I mean, there was little more to say back then other than the boys lived happily ever after.

Events in Australia during late 2017, however, presented an opportunity to provide just one more chapter to their life journey. There is absolutely no sex in this one. Sorry, but the reality is the boys are 60 in this chapter and, let's face it, if your reading this style of story then you really don't want to read about two 60-year old's getting it on.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy the conclusion. You can contact me at jeremymyers111@gmail.com

Saturday, 29 December 2018

I woke slowly, basking in the comfort of our bed and the feel of Logan close behind me. After all these years, our sleeping positions had hardly changed. The summer night had been mildly warm and, as such, Logan had moved slightly away from me, although his left arm still reached around to my chest, holding me loosely, while I could feel his slow, steady breath on the back of my neck. I slowly extricated myself from him, and the bed, being careful not to disturb my man. Standing, I looked back at him; he was still beautiful, still my Logan.

Today, this morning, would be the last that I would wake up beside Logan as my boyfriend, my life partner. Tomorrow we would be husband and husband.

Logan rolled over onto his back as I watched, the bedding covering him from his belly button down, his bulge apparent under the sheet. I turned, my bladder sending urgent messages to my brain, and padded quietly into the adjoining bathroom. Finishing my business and washing my hands, I walked back into our spacious bedroom and over to the massive picture window looking out to the west, to the Indian Ocean and the beach that had been, and still is, such an integral part of our lives.

It was early still, the sun was low enough for the beach, some one kilometre away, to be in shadow. The profile of Rottnest Island was clearly discernible in the clear morning air as were the five or six cargo vessels at anchor, awaiting their turn to enter Fremantle Port. I never tired of this view from the second-floor bedroom of our City Beach house. Looking south I could follow the coast to Cottesloe, where the tall Norfolk Island pines dominated the skyline, while north I could easily see the costal high rise in Scarborough.

As I watched, the sun reflected off the smooth ocean, disturbed only marginally by the off-shore easterly breeze. Low swell lines made their way towards shore, onward to the groynes at either end of our beach. From my vantage point I could see the surf watch tower at the end of the southern groyne and, slightly to the north, the row of low-rise buildings built along the upper beach.

Back in the days Logan and I frequented the shower stall, the surf club had been quite new. By the 2000's, however, it was becoming tired and worn, with concrete cancer beginning to take its toll. Around 2010 it was demolished by the local council, making way for new premises. At the same time the council undertook further development of the beach, building low rise structures for restaurants and kiosks. Logan and I, along with a few hundred guests, would be monopolising one of those later today.

I turned back to Logan, still sleeping on the bed we had shared for so long. He lay on his back, covered only partially by the pure white cotton sheet. His head lay slightly to the side, his right leg bent at the knee, and his left hand laying on the pillow near his head, the right one over his still trim belly. Against the white of the bed linen, Logan positively glowed, his rich golden tan contrasting magnificently against the pale surrounds. We had both been blessed with skin that was well suited to the Australian climate. Logan tanned to true golden brown while I was more olive skinned, similar to a lighter "runny" honey.

Of course, we still took care to ensure there was minimal risk of the great Australian blight, skin cancer and, in particular, melanoma. We were checked annually and had the occasional blemish burnt off but, after a lifetime under the sun, we considered this a small price. Logan's wavy light brown hair was still there, though now it was peppered with a substantial dose of silver as were his sparse collection of chest hair. Like Logan, I still boasted a full head of hair though it was no longer a light brown. Mostly a silvery blonde, I was just grateful I still had it all.

We had had a head start with our tans having spent the southern winter sailing around the Mediterranean, returning to Perth in September after 18 weeks in Europe. Back in the northern spring and summer of 2016 we had headed off to the US and Canada, starting in Vancouver before driving down the coast to San Francisco, LA and out to Vegas. From there we flew down to New Orleans before picking up a hire car and making our way down to Miami.

There we met up with Daniel and Adam, spending a week exploring the general area. We then picked up a sail yourself yacht and spent the next 12 weeks sailing around the Caribbean. Dan and Adam left us after a couple of weeks but were quickly replaced by Logan's brother, Scott and his family. They stayed a while and then went to do their thing in Orlando only to be replaced by Chris and his wife, Margaret, along with two of my nephews and their families. This went on for the entire 12 weeks we spent on the water, friends and family coming and going as they pleased while Logan and I whiled away the days enjoying everything the Caribbean could offer.

We had enjoyed that break so much that as soon as we returned to Perth in September, we began planning for our great Mediterranean adventure using our 60 th birthdays as reason to celebrate and spoil ourselves. Early in May 2018 we flew to Paris via Dubai and spent a week exploring the galleries and sights in the French capital. A number of family and friends joined us there for our birthday celebrations before we picked up a hire car and spent two wonderful weeks driving around the French country side enjoying all the wonderful bounty it offered, particularly the many wineries that crossed our path. Eventually, we arrived in Nice where we met up with Dan and Adam before catching the train up to Genoa where we picked up a beautiful 14 metre, 10 berth Beneteau Oceanis 473.

We sailed east then south, following the magnificent coastline of the Italian Riviera. Sights, such as the Cinque Terre, took our breath away as we meandered down the coast enjoying each other's company and the total freedom of being on the glorious sun-soaked seas. When we arrived at the island of Capri, Dan and Adam went off to explore southern Italy while we were joined by my sister and some of her family.

As we sailed around the northern Med, friends and family joined us for a while then departed to be replaced by others. The end of August found us back in Capri where Dan and Adam re-joined us to help take the yacht home to Genoa. Returning to Perth, it took us a while to regain our land legs and to reacquaint ourselves with the detritus of everyday life.

I had lost myself looking out over the view and was surprised when I felt two arms come around my waist and a chin rest on my left shoulder.

"Good morning dearest, you okay?" he asked as he pressed his body into me.

"Good morning to you too, my love. Yes, I'm all good, just lost myself in the view. And you, are you all good?" I asked as I wrapped my arms around his.

"Yes J, all good. You been up long?"

As I looked out the window, I noted the sun had risen somewhat higher than when I last recalled, so lost in my thoughts and memories had I been.

"A little while sweetheart, I didn't want to disturb you, you looked so peaceful, so beautiful laying there."

"Haaaww, well shit babe, thank you! You looked pretty damn good standing there too, hon. Your butt is still as firm as it was in our teens."

"Hehehe, thank you, but I fear thoust doth exaggerate!"

"Not at all lover. But then, I am 60, going on 61, so my memory is not what it used to be."

Fortunately for Logan he giggled while he said that. Damn cheek of the man.

"Payback, when you least expect it, Biff!"

"Fair enough old man. Now, what thoughts were you lost in?"

"Oh, I don't know, our Mediterranean cruise, the view, how much I love you. It's a big day love, are you ready for it?"

"I've been ready for it for 45 years, J. It's only a piece of paper, I know, but it means so much, it has been a long wait."

"That it has, but now it's here and for some silly reason I'm feeling like a nervous nelly."

"I know, me too. Silly is right though. Remember when we took our affirmations, way back when, down on our beach?"

"40 years ago, Loges. I'll never forget it, love."

"It seemed like it was just the two of us, J, while we spoke our vows to one another, it was like no-one else existed."

"True that. It was like floating in the clouds, just me and the man I love." I turned my head and we quietly kissed. Breaking away eventually, I looked into his ice blue eyes. "I love you."

"I know, I love you too J, more every day I think."

We kissed again before I changed direction a touch and asked, "I wonder if any of our illustrious guests have arisen yet?"

"Hmmm, possibly, although I suspect some will be a little head achy this morning. Some of the boys were giving it quite a nudge when we snuck off to bed."

"Yep, I reckon there will a few hangovers at the breakfast table. Speaking of which, do I detect the faint aroma of frying pork product?"

"My word you do. Marion must be here!"

Of indeterminant age, Marion Arnold - friend, confidant, dog sitter, house keeper - had come to us not long after we moved into the City Beach house back in 2003. It was too large for us to look after; we didn't really have time and there was no reason why we needed to be tied down by household matters. Marion did everything for us, cooked through the week, cleaned, washed, ironed, dog sat and lived in the house when we were off galivanting around somewhere on holidays. She had been married but lost her husband to pancreatic cancer in the late 1990's. Having no children and no husband, she needed someone to care for and picked us. Thank God!

Logan kissed the back of my neck before letting me go and turned, starting towards the door.

"Erm, Logan, I think in the name of decency we should at least throw some knickers on!"

"Oh, come on J, let's give Marion and the boys a thrill. It is, after all, our day."

"Hah, you're on your own with this one, lover boy, I am not stirring Marion up this morning. You know damn well how she carried on when she caught us skinny dipping in the pool. We still haven't heard the end of it and that was bloody nearly 10 years ago!"

"Yes, well, OK then. You're right, she's just as likely to snip off our todgers and feed the poor shrunken creatures to us for breakfast, our day or not!"

"Now you're getting it! And speak for yourself when talking about the size of our todgers!"

We both giggled as we foraged around for boardshorts and tee shirts. Once suitably attired we headed out of our bedroom onto the expansive landing. From here we could see the doors of two of the four guest rooms and both were closed.

"Well it looks like Rod and Miles are still in bed along with Chris and Margaret. Maybe the others too, uh?"

Yeah, whatever, lets get down stairs. Dan and Adam are supposed to be here by 8.00. Then we can start the party and wake all these delightful creatures up!"

"Sounds like a plan, honey-bunny!"

"My God Loges, you're fucking sexy when you talk cutesy."

"Fuck off."

I giggled as we both headed for the back stairs, the smell of bacon wafting up to greet us.

I entered the kitchen right behind Logan and we were greeted by two very happy Labradors, Boris and Natasha. They paid us quick greetings before heading straight back to the inner workings of the kitchen where Marion was preparing a mountain of bacon while seemingly simultaneously cracking egg after egg into a bowl.

"Well now, if it isn't the men of the hour! How are you both?"

"All the better for seeing you Marion", replied Logan. We both went up to her, each of us kissing her on a cheek.

"Thanks so much for coming in on your day off Marion, it means a lot to us." I stated. "And now you have to feed the hoards and put up with them all!"

"What hoards?" said Miles as he wandered into the kitchen. Age had treated Miles well. He and Rodney still lived in Sydney and were both very successful doctors (retired) in their fields, Miles a paediatrician and Rodney an endocrinologist. They were regular visitors back to Perth though and were our drivers for today, just as they were 40 years ago.

"I think they are insulting their revered guests' husband." Rodney had slipped in behind his husband just in time to hear the conversation.

"Oh, well that's not nice, not nice at all. I think some champagne is called for to help me get over the stress of being insulted so!"

"Well, shit boys. It's not even 8 in the morning and already you want a drink!" I responded. "Glasses are in that cupboard there, Rod. Champagne is in the fridge. Let's party!"

Marion groaned but continued to mass produce breakfast while Logan quickly ducked into the butler's pantry to grab the champagne and I grabbed orange juice from the main fridge. Rod placed five champagne flutes on the island counter top as Logan came back with 2 bottles of fizz. Opening one, he poured each of us half a glass while I topped off with the juice.

Handing them around to our guests and Marion, we all held up our glass and said "Cheers" before sipping the contents. Rod went off to get more glasses as Chris, Margaret, Craig, Brad and my nephew Alex all wandered in.

All our house guests were now present, and the kitchen was full of chatter, good mornings and the popping of champagne corks. The Mimosas (champagne and orange) were going down easy but it was going to be long day with the wedding event not starting until 4:00pm so I was reluctant to get too comfortable

"You guys are driving us don't forget." I stated, looking at Rod and Miles.

"Never fear my dear Jeremy, we won't over indulge, promise." Miles responded.

"Yeah, well, that was not the case last night now was it?" Chris questioned. "You gave it something of a nudge."

"Umm yes but I was certainly not alone young Christopher!"

The banter continued between us all as Marion continued to cook up a storm and have a drink at the same time. We had just cracked the third bottle when the doorbell rang. I went through to the front and opened up to Dan and Adam. Behind them stood our lawyer and long-time friend David Barnes along with his partner, Oliver.

I hugged each of them and welcomed them as I bundled them all inside and directed them off to the kitchen where Marion was ready to serve breakfast. More drinks were issued and we all took our places around the dining table and breakfast bar, wherever we could find a place, and began to chow down on the feast.

After breakfast we all did what we could to help clean-up before some disappeared to shower and take care of other business. A few of us wandered outside and finished up in the pool floating around and enjoying the company. The day was very casual, simply a bunch of friends gathered informally to celebrate the last few hours Logan and I would be single men. Marion fed us lunch, Rod watered us, and the afternoon began to drift towards the hour we would all need to prepare ourselves for the real party to come.

I still could not believe Logan and I were about to do something we had dreamt about for over 40 years. I could not believe that Australia had stepped so easily into the 21 st century and afforded us the joy of same sex marriage.

After much political debate, ducking and weaving and failure, the Federal government issued a voluntary survey of the Australian people. Holding what many said was devoid of any real power, the survey documents were posted to all registered voters in September 2017. Strictly optional, voters had until 7 November to return their responses to the Australian Bureau of Statistics who were managing the process. On 15 November the ABS released the results with 61.6% of respondents voting yes. A private members bill entered Parliament quickly and was passed by the Senate, 43 votes to 12 on 29 November. Despite attempts to amend the legislation by some, the bill was passed unamended by the House of Representatives on the 7 December, becoming law 2 days later.

In less than one month, same sex marriage had gone from being unrecognised to being a fact of Law. For once, the politicians, well most of them, had listened to the people and had done the right thing.

Logan and I decided to wait 12 months before we married, it was a given we would marry on the day that had been so important to us, 29 December. After all, so many things had occurred on that date it would have been a travesty not to finally wed on that day. Since it would have been too rushed in 2017, we decided to wait and now, here we were.

Around 2:00 Logan and I headed up to shower and change. Those in the wedding party did likewise. Dan was my best man and beside him would be Chris and Alex. Rod would be Logan's best man with his brother, Scott, and Miles standing with him. We debated if we wanted someone to give each of us away and eventually opted to do so thereby being able to include Logan's mum, Beth. She would walk with Logan while my sister would give me away. I thought it was all a little corny but hey, it kind of stuck with tradition.

Beth, at 87, was still an active woman. She had had minor health issues over the last few years but none that slowed her down. She still lived in the Phillips family home, 10 minutes away in Wembley Downs, and still held a driver's licence. Logan's dad had passed away back in 2015, still estranged from Logan and separated from Beth. Living in Melbourne, he had missed so many family events including watching his grandchildren grow up. Oh sure, Scott and Erica, together with their families, travelled to see him every few years but he never ever made the effort to come visit Perth. He certainly never tried to make amends with Logan and I know, despite the passing of the years, that his actions, or lack of, really hurt my man to the core.

Thankfully, my mum and dad had readily accepted Logan and within a few years of our being together the three had developed an unbreakable bond. Mum and dad adored Logan and I know he loved them like they were his own. Dad and he developed a very strong and special relationship over the years, heading off together fishing, something I never really got into. They would go off on fishing excursions, sometimes for days at a time, and have a bloody great time. Mum and I thought it was brilliant, if Logan could not have his birth father then at least he had his father-in-law.

We were devastated when dad passed not long after his 92 nd birthday. It was unexpected and a shock. Mum survived him by 18 months before she succumbed to pneumonia just weeks before her 93 rd birthday. As I have said before in this story of ours, both Logan and I were so very grateful to my parents for everything they did for us, for their love and for their understanding. They, among so many others, made our lives so much easier, especially in those early years together.

We both thought of them on this day of our marriage and wished that they could be here to enjoy it with us. We knew that they would be totally stoked for us.

Beth and my sister arrived just after 3:30 and checked us over. We had tossed up whether to be dressed formally or more casually and in the end opted for navy suits, light blue shirts and matching ties. Brown belts and shoes finished it off. The rest of the boys were dressed similarly but only our ties matched.

At 3:45 we all began to file out of the house and climb aboard the three cars needed to transport us down to the beach. Logan and his mum were being chauffeured by Rod in our trusty old Valiant. We had maintained it over the years and ensured it was always in showroom condition. The bright white paintwork and chrome positively glowed. My sister and I were in my Mercedes driven by Rod while the rest of the guys headed off in Logan's Landcruiser.

The entourage arrived at the restaurant and went inside to a packed venue. 300 guests would witness our nuptials and then party the night away in a cocktail party to end all cocktail parties. At 4:00 everyone took their positions and Logan and I and the two women went back to the front foyer to wait for our entry time. We had played rock, paper, scissors to decide who entered first and Logan had won so he and Beth prepared themselves. We looked at each other and the next thing I knew we were in each other's, arms holding one another tight.

"You ready for this, lover?"

"Never been readier Logan, this is our time, this is the moment we have waited for, for so long. I love you."

"I love you too J. I guess we'll see you in there uh?"

"Wouldn't miss it for the world babe. See you soon."

With that Logan turned, took his mother's arm and started towards the front of the room.

I looked at my sister, Katrina, drew a deep breath and said. "Well sissy, it took a while but here we are. I can hardly wait."

"It was always destined to be Jeremy, always. Of all the people I know, no-one, no couple, has ever appeared so in love, so devoted to the other. I'm your older sister, I love you both and I have never been more proud than I am at this moment.

"Come on, let's do this thing."

I smiled at her, kissed her on the cheek and took her arm. We began our walk. In the distance I could see the love of my life waiting for me, smiling and radiant. I smiled at those we passed, nodding my head to acknowledge those friends and family that meant so much to us.

This was our time, we had been together for 45 years, never separated for than more than a few days at a time, other than that horrible time at the end of 1975, and it was our time to celebrate our life together. I approached the wedding party and my sister let me go. She leant over and kissed me on the cheek, squeezing my right hand as she whispered. "You are the shining light of this family Jeremy, this room is testament to the love, friendship and sincerity you both give to others. We are so proud. Now, don't fuck it up!"

She smiled as I almost snorted out loud. Smiling like an idiot, I turned to face the front and the celebrant who would conduct our ceremony. Behind him, through the large window, was the beach where we had had so many wonderful times over the years, particularly those in the mid-70's. It had certainly been a journey, thankfully one with few bumps. No one knew how much longer we would have together, but I knew for however long it was destined to be it would always be a happy and contented time, perhaps with a few challenges but nothing that could defeat our love and devotion for each other.

The celebrant was almost through the preamble and it was time for Logan and me to make our vows. We had both agonised for months over what we would say to one another but really all we needed to do was speak from the heart.

Having earlier won yet another round of rock, paper scissors, Logan began.

"My dearest Jeremy. Every moment I share with you lifts me beyond the clouds, beyond the Earth and beyond the stars. Every moment I share with you provides another layer to the depth of my love and devotion for you. Every moment I share with you gives me the strength and the will to be a better man, a better human and, soon, a better husband.

"When we became friends all those years ago, I became the happiest boy on Earth, when we became more than friends the sun paled into insignificance compared to my joy. When we made our commitment to each other not even all the suns in all the universes could outshine the sheer ecstasy that filled me.

"No word in any language, in any dictionary, in any universe is enough to describe my feelings for you. I stand before you today exultant in our partnership. You are my life. You are my entire being. You are my licence to existence. I am humbled before you. I promise you everything I have to give, and I promise you my eternal gratitude for returning my love."

Well, gosh darn, I hoped my little bit could equal that!

"My most precious Logan. No one on this Earth, or any other plain of existence, could ever provide me with the sheer joy, pleasure, care, love and devotion that your mere presence gives me. How just one human, one soul, can gift so much to me is almost beyond comprehension. I live to be near you. I live to love and to hold you. I live to provide you with all your needs and desires. You are not just my partner; you are not just my soulmate. You are my everything.

"Without you I would have no substance, no presence. I would exist merely as a shadow, a waif, lost in the darkness of a pitiless and endless void. With you, I am strong and confident. I am whole and present. I am complete. With every day that passes my love for you grows stronger, deeper, greater. Your love is the building block of my life.

"I vow to you, in the presence of our friends and of our families, that I will forever be at your side loving you, supporting you, caring for you, providing for you, sharing all that I have with you now and forever. No matter what the future holds for us both we will endure. We will forever be one. We will forever be linked, and our love will forever sustain us.

"Always and forever."

The celebrant said a few more words and then Logan and I exchanged rings. And we kissed. It wasn't chaste, but it certainly wasn't lusty either. Just right, I think. We then turned and faced our guests, smiling and holding hands. In return they clapped and cheered and then the party began. We went off to sign the paperwork and then photos out on the beach and groyne before heading back inside to join the celebrations. After photos Alex, Rod and Miles took the cars home, fed the dogs and returned, compliments of Uber, within half an hour.

We of course opened the dancing, first with David Bowie's "Lets Spend the Night Together" then Nina Simone's "My Baby Just Cares for Me." After that, well it was one very long, very fun, very late night. Logan and I got home just as the eastern sky began to glow with the promise of a new day. Not sure when everyone else returned home but we wouldn't see any of our guests until well after lunch.

It was a bloody good party and a fine wedding. I loved being able to call my Logan "Husband". It suited him.

After 45 years together, Logan and I are now legally recognised as a couple with all the benefits that provides under the law. It has been an awfully long road and one that back in 1973 we could not possibly have foreseen. So far, it has been a wonderful road, an exciting road and mostly a very fortunate road. Where a fork presented itself, we have generally been able to select the path that provided us with the best possible outcome. We have thankfully not had to travel too many dark paths nor been forced to make any U-turns in our life journey and much of that I attribute to Logan and our wonderful friends and family.

No one knows when our road shall end. It may be tomorrow, next year or in 30 years. All we can do is make the most of each day, be good to each other and those around us and enjoy the journey. One thing I do know and that is that I would not trade the last 45 years for anything. If there is a higher being then he/she/they have been exceptionally generous to me and for that I am eternally grateful.

I look forward now to enjoying, loving, spoiling and caring for my husband. Always and forever.

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