Blessed Be the Merciful

by Rafael Henry

Chapter 9

France, late July.

We flew over in a plane that had two engines and seats for six people. The flight from the south west English peninsular was just over an hour, and then a taxi into the town and then a first sight of the most amazing house I've ever seen. At first sight it has at least four floors with a massive entrance hall and a grand staircase up from the ground floor to the apartment. Everything was ready for us, towels laid out, flowers in vases, and all the beds made up and ready to get into. But there was work to do and things to be seen before anyone could think of sleep. We all went straight to the tall windows in the large reception room with two sofas, upholstered in pink fabric and gold leafed arms, an elaborate oval table [called Boule] with a huge flower arrangement in a vase in the middle. Hanging from the ceiling is a massive electrolier on a gilt chain with at least a dozen arms radiating from the middle. Everything looked foreign and elegant. Henry undid the catches that secure the windows, and opened them to reveal the horseshoe shaped beach below us, crowded with humanity, children of all ages running about, playing games, and generally having fun. At the back of the beach are rows of blue and white beach tents with pointed tops and sunbeds in front of them. A group of children were paddling in a pool left by the receding tide. A boy, very tanned and wearing a tiny orange swim suit, looks up at us, holding a net on a long bamboo stick. I know now that this is a place where the wealthy French bring their families to play for the summer weeks. There is elegance and beauty everywhere. The scent of bodies, oiled and healthy, mixes with the smell of the sea drifting in on the breeze. I'm going to like this place.

'What's that over there…….the statue?' Leon asks quietly, pointing to the wide promenade.

'Alfred Hitchcock. He directed the film, The Birds. Very famous. Lots of very well-known people came here.' Henry answers, his hand on Leon's bony shoulder. It's another chance to visually examine Peter's new friend Leon. Despite his natural leanness, there's a poise to him, the way he holds himself, almost regally, hands held behind his back, straight backed, head held nicely…..up. Yes, almost arrogantly clever perhaps? I strongly suspect that he will please someone in bed, given more time, and a little education, rather like me in fact.

We had pancakes at a café on the wide promenade, before Henry took us to a shop that smelt of expensive clothes. He bought white sporty shorts for us all, and two tee shirts, pairs of lightweight sandals for each of us, and a pile of very sexy boys' underwear we could share. Henry insisted that if what we chose wasn't white, it had to be very nearly white. Back 'home' in the smaller bedroom, Henry watched as we tried our new kit on, including our new colourful swimming briefs, whilst collecting a pile of our rather tired and dull English clothes that we would not see again for three weeks. It was another chance to give Leon the once-over, and I haven't changed my mind with regard to his potential. I'm impressed. He outstrips young Peter by some margin, the fortunate little bunny.

We had agreed that Leon and Peter would share the big bed and I would sleep in the single with the carved and painted wooden headboard. I had never slept in anything resembling this beauty which matched Peter and Leon's. The sheets were pure white and crackly, with perfect lines where they had been folded and ironed. Mine had two pillows that when you pressed your hand on them, they gently formed perfect spaces to rest a weary head on. In the corner is the wide door to the bathroom with a tub and a massive shower head with no walls around it. Henry had called it a wet room. The room has a mosaic floor and a drain for the water in the far corner. I reckon six people could shower together, an interesting prospect. Peter pointed out the strange fitting that you would never see in England upon which you sat after your morning bowel movement, as Henry put it. Basically, it's a gentle jet of warm water aimed at your bottom, and again Henry has something to say about it….

'Use it boys, every time you go. Is that understood? You'll find it is quite a pleasant experience.'

'You put all your clothes in here boys each evening.' Henry says, pointing to a basket by the front door. 'They will be returned the next morning. And please use the handkerchiefs provided.'

I couldn't remember the last time I used that word. There were no rolls of lavatory tissue to be seen, just several boxes of face tissue. There were two chromium plated rails with beautiful thick white towels of different sizes hung over them. Above the large scallop shaped basin were placed a pile of white flannels. This is all rather different from life at the Rectory. Hand soap is in a container that you push down a plunger thing. Any kind of washing is done under the shower head, Henry insists. Ok, we will be very clean boys.

We were to eat dinner every night at either the Oyster Club or the Pourquoi Pas, otherwise known to us as the Why Not. Henry likes his seafood, and consequently, so do we apparently. Leon is allowed a bigger helping of frites with his moules as he needs, in Henry's words, 'a bit more carbohydrate than you two.' I agree now I've seen him nude, Leon looks painfully thin, apart from one part which is the exact opposite of the rest of him, as it all swings between his legs. Good grief, the boy is only twelve! Some things are just not fair. It's very odd but Leon is a boy you can't imagine with a hard penis. I think it's his quiet unsmiling and serious demeanour. Few words come from his mouth it seems, but everything comes from his eyes. Peter is what I would call a 'pokey' boy, always twiddling and fiddling in his pockets. I happen to know that his little smooth door mouse of a willy can transform quickly into a perfectly straight hard rod. I can't imagine Leon's getting much bigger than it is relaxed, as it reclines heavily sideways, like a large sausage, with little room to spare in his new knickers, courtesy of Henry's impeccable taste.

I've noticed, and so has Henry, that there has been quite a lot of incidental contact between Peter and Leon. They were both in front of Henry and I as we wandered back from the restaurant the first evening. There were giggles and hands touching. Henry had allowed us a few sips of his wine which may have had an effect on them. I look at Henry to see if he's noticed. He looks at me, smiles, and raises his eyebrows as if to say…..'Do you really want to share a bedroom with those two?'

Our days follow a strict routine and they start early! Henry goes off running at five thirty, leaving written instructions for us. We are to meet him at six thirty sharp on the beach to swim. On our way 'home' we call in at the boulangerie for the day's supply of bread, possibly a few croissants, and the treat of the day, a pastry consisting of fruit in a jelly substance of some kind, spread out over a circular flan case. We will eat this at home after dinner. Bedtime is nine thirty when we can read for as long as we want, so long as we are tucked up. Peter and Leon don't want to read. They just want to giggle, wriggle and fiddle. I pretend to read but I'd rather watch the boys do their thing. They are not doing anything too drastic, at least not yet. Leon looks over towards me at regular intervals to see if I'm paying them any attention. I smile, he smiles, and then they carry on. I'm sure that Leon is very self-conscious and my presence is intimidating him. But I have a solution to my growing problem which I'm going to put to Henry. I can't spend three weeks watching those two boys amusing one another.

After the first shower, post the first effing cold bathe in the sea, to wash off sand and salt from our bodies, breakfast takes us up to ten o'clock, and then there's the plan to make for the day, which is usually the same plan as the day before. Breakfast done, fruit juice, melon and bread and jam, milky coffee in very large cups, and all cleared up, we walk around town taking in the permanent market and the surrounding covered and open- air market stalls and of course coffees at the café on the corner when we practice our French conversation. Being English, we are rubbish French conversationalists. Lunch we have at a different cheap restaurant each day, sometimes quite a long walk away, such as the one in Saint-Lunaire. We are banned from thinking any thoughts of going over on the ferry to Saint Malo because it will be full of English trippers getting in the way and speaking English . Henry speaks what sounds to me like good French, and the rest of us get by, but never in English. The cafe staff smile and always speak to us in French…….slowly. They know Henry well. I'm sure the locals respect us for at least trying to speak proper French.

Last night I stayed up a little later than Peter and Leon. I think Henry wanted the boys out of the way so we could talk. He explained his bi-sexuality to me, not that it needed any explanation. I had worked that out already. He asked me if I am all 'one way', and I told him I thought that I was, and that I assumed he knew which way that was. He told me that he found me unbearably attractive, which was unfortunate as I am not yet legally able to choose to have sex with him. We talked about the occasions, two of them, when he had masturbated me to a fruitful conclusion it has to be said, and quickly, and how did I feel about that with the benefit of hindsight. I feel fine about it. I'm sure that all this sea air is making all of us feel frisky. When I went back to our bedroom, both boys were already asleep, their bodies touching. I took a long hard look at them, their faces just inches apart. Curious, I drew back the lovely linen sheet [Henry had said they were linen] that covered their bottom halves to take a quick peek. It was obvious where their hands had been, and only recently detached, with Peter still holding the handkerchief. I carefully removed it from Peter's grasp but what my senses told me was not conclusive. I think that Leon is a very innocent boy, which sends waves of affection for him rampaging through my head. How perverse is that? Sometimes I have no understanding of what goes through my head.

I'm staring intently at Leon's balls. They do move inside the loose bag of textured skin. His body moves, possibly disturbed by the cool air I've allowed into the bed. I see his eye lids flutter slightly and open fractionally. He turns a little more onto his back and I notice his balls churn again slightly. Then he turns again, this time back towards Peter's sleeping body, resting his hand close to Peter's snoozing pink mouse. Leo's sausage-like cock is lengthening and the slight curve in it as it lies flaccid is becoming straighter by the second, as the deeper shade of pink head slowly emerges from the thin, almost transparent covering of skin. I watch for another five minutes as the process completes. They say that boys and young men get up to a dozen or even more erections every night whilst they sleep. Sweet dreams Leon.

We had all showered earlier that evening, and when I went to Henry's room commanded as I was to have our pre-sleep chat dressed only in one of the three silk dressing gowns that hung in our bedroom, he was waiting for me. He was sitting up in his elaborately carved and gilded bed reading. He puts the book down……

'Would you care to join me Jamie…… obligation?'

The investigation of any activity on the Leon front has left me recovering from some excitement. Henry smiles as I take my gown off and he sees me naked once more. I like showing off for him. But he wants to know, after two days here, how things are developing between Peter and Leon.

'Do you suppose they are intimate yet Jamie? After all they are sharing a bed together.'

'I'm not sure Henry. Just because they are in the same bed Henry, it doesn't mean what you're thinking. I did find this just now in Peter's grasp. I think they must have fallen asleep midway.'

Henry agreed with me.

'I think you had better take over Jamie. My son is not to be relied upon to seduce his friend.'

'He managed me ok.' I reply.

'With a bit of help from you no doubt?'

'A tiny bit…….and don't tempt me with the little innocent and languid Leon. He's not so little by the way.'

'Oh. Do tell.'

I'm not in a reading mood right now, and I'm naked in front of Henry's bed. It's pretty obvious what I'm prepared to do to or for Henry. In a few words I persuade Henry to do the right thing by me, knowing it will be good and that he'll enjoy himself, I'll get relief from my frustration, and I'll sleep well afterwards. I climb up onto Henry's bed, and when he starts planting little kisses all over my tummy, and then my inner thighs, I'm thinking that shortly I'm going to have an entirely new experience. Experience is the key I've decided. I made the decision some time ago. Sex is high on my personal agenda, a fact that may already have dawned on anyone reading this, but I need to learn about the full range of sexual activity, what it is and how to do it properly and without undue difficulties. I'm bright enough to know that I need to learn from someone I can trust not to hurt me, physically or mentally, and with whom I like being.

This morning when Henry left the bed, his movements woke me. I watched bleary eyed as he pulled up his running shorts over his natty and well-filled briefs, and strapped his watch to his wrist. I turn sideways on the bed and think about last night.

Henry had turned tail on me which left him accessible to me with just one of my hands as I spooned into his back. I should have made him finish what he was doing to me just moments before. His cock is in my hand, hot and very hard. He tells me to stop handling him, grabbing my hand mid stroke. I hadn't realised how effective my hand movements had been. He was desperately sweet as he lay on his back for me. For the very first time I put my mouth on his and we kissed briefly. He just wanted a break to prevent his orgasm to come too soon, the sweet man. We kissed again. Nice. Very nice. Then he let me finish him. It wasn't long before he came, all warm in my hand. Ah, at last, the stuff that made my darling boy Peter. It has taken me until this morning to come to terms with the fact that I have successfully masturbated a 'grown-up' to a finish. The feeling that there's no going back now looms large in my mind.

After a simple lunch on the promenade, we stroll home to rest. This is Henry's rule……another of them. I like Henry's rules. They lend a comforting structure to days that might just meander aimlessly. I really do love it here. The beach is just fifty yards away looking down from our balcony. I use the field glasses that hang between the tall windows that are almost always kept open to the sea breezes, and the faint whiff of seaweed! One can watch the boys and girls playing all day long if you wanted to, not needed to be watched over by topless mothers, and fathers, some in ridiculously brief swim wear, standing, posing, the boy teenagers occasionally looking down to make sure their cocks are still there and looking perky. The miracle of life is all around us. But last night's events keep returning to me. I had 'The stuff that made Peter' all over my hand, and as I examined it in some detail, milky and slippery, and strangely cool now, it made a very flushed Henry laugh. It's just extraordinary what it can produce when you look at Peter and Leon, and more of the same down there on the beach, those golden boys, young and older boys, athletic boys, boisterous, some not so, some more so, and all perfectly lovely on the shining sands.

So are all the days sunny, everything in our garden rosy? No of course not. Not all the boys are tanned and pretty. Not all the people are handsome, trim and attractive. In fact not that many are if truth be told. But believe me, some are, like that group of kids that sit on the steps most mornings below the figure of Hitchcock in their shorts with their knees up and wide apart quite deliberately I'm convinced, showing everything right up to their snow-white briefs, or nothing, waiting for the glances people like me will give them. They smile back, knowing why I looked for a little longer than I ought to have done, and smiled at them, nodded at them even, in appreciation of their generous gestures. Nice to know that the French middle classes insist on white underwear for their precocious sons. A couple of them are on the lookout for girls as they pass by and giggle. The other boy isn't. When I glance at him, he sees me looking, and his closed knees open by way of invitation and my tummy somersaults.

I wander the beach from one end to the other, away from Peter, Leon and Henry for a while, with time to myself to reflect and observe my feelings as if I'm outside my body looking in. I feel happy and content. My skin is warm from the late afternoon sun, burning bright now after the morning deluge. There is sound all around and outside me, and there is the low whisper of longing inside me. I need to be loved. I need to be loved in the mornings, in the day time, and the night time too…….all the time. I need to be loved and give my love back. Henry used the word 'promiscuous' in relation to my thinking rather than my actual behaviour. In this place that seems to me to reek of promiscuity, I'm convinced that it would be easy to pick up boys. I told Henry that.

'I think I should keep you on a lead Jamie.' He's probably right. I spend a third of my life in a country rectory, and the other third in a stuffy boarding school about as far away from civilization as it is possible to get. No wonder I feel the need to express my sexuality.

There's a group of youngsters playing in a pool of seawater, digging their hands into the wet sand and piling it up and dribbling it onto a Disney style fairy castle. I watch them for a few moments. Then I turn and look back to our house standing high up on the rocks, our wonderful Belle Epoch house, tall and majestic. The tall reception room windows are open and there's figure standing there on the veranda. I recognize the boy in the trendy mirrored sunglasses. It's Leon. He's surveying the expanse of beach with Henry's pair of Carl Zeiss field glasses. I wave, and seconds later, he waves back.

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