by Rafael Henry

Chapter 40

A fine line.

I've been looking through my old diaries lately. This entry had a date that tells me I was sixteen when I wrote it.

'If a boy loves an adult, I've read, he knows perfectly well he is still too young to be the giver. I think that's when the man lies on top of you, or somewhere else perhaps, or I can sit on top of him. Lael liked it that way. I know this, and I accept the fact that I must be the receiver. And it's an act of love. It is one of my ways of loving him, of proving my love. Let me tell you exactly what goes on. I am united with him in the flesh. I give him pleasure, and love is giving as well as receiving. It may be difficult for outsiders to understand, but what I'm writing is the truth. And someone's sexual essence in my mouth is like having the person's entire beauty in my body, very intimate and unexplainably beautiful, just like it was with Lael. I know I can have beautiful sex with anyone now, except a girl or woman. I know I can never do that. Roger said he's seen a boy just like Lael. He smiled. I never said anything but I know it is him.'

I told Otta that I need to talk to him calmly, about his relationship with Wulff. Roger said I should for his own protection, and the boy's.

' It's pretty obvious Jon. There's something going on, but I'm not saying it's Otta's fault. I think it's the boy. As you said, he's aching for love, and if sex is the way to get it, that's what he's going to offer him. He's already doing it. On the veranda last Saturday. He was asking for it. Did you see the way he was sitting with him? It reminds me of Britten's friendship with one of his boys. What was his name?'

' David Hemmings. If anything has gone on between them, Wulff is not likely to complain is he?'

' No, I suppose not. But that's not the point Jon.'

' None of Britten's boys ever complained did they?'

' No. The Hemmings boy said nothing ever happened, nothing serious anyway, although they were caught in some serious snogging backstage one evening after one of the performances. All the other boys known to have been more than friendly with Britten denied any hanky panky went on, although more than one spent many nights in his bed. I suspect they all got together and agreed to deny any sex happened. There's no question that Britten had a passion for lots of boys he met through musical events and so on. He must have had a will of iron lying next to a lovely young chap like Hemmings, in his prepubescent prime, naked in bed with him. So Britten wakes up before the boy does. Don't tell me doesn't have a look to see what's going on under the sheet. The boy's on his side facing him with a hard-on. Then he slowly turns onto his back? Britten was definitely sexually attracted to boys that age, but didn't ever do anything naughty with any of them. Not even Hemmings would have known if the guy had fiddled with him. There must have been a hundred mornings when he would have woken up next to a boy, still fast asleep. It's hard to believe he never did anything. Or is that just us thinking the worst Jon? Britten is recorded as saying that if he hadn't buggered boys, and I'm talking legal boys here, he would have missed out on one of life's great pleasures. Actually I don't think anything was legal in those days was it? Probably not. So put that statement of Britten's against everything else and that points to some at least of those boys lying through their teeth. Loads of boys adored him and wanted his affection. Goodness knows what the parents were thinking of. In a country like this where a public revelation of man and boy sex would entail life-ruining consequences, guessing that unrecorded sex did not take place between a man and boy who loved one another is always that neither were likely ever to mention it to anyone else unless they were caught in the act. It's hardly surprising that boys like Hemmings would deny everything even if sex had happened. Nor would it be surprising if any loyal friend said he believed Hemmings despite knowing otherwise . I would have a serious talk to Otta before there's trouble Jon. Isn't it very strange that one of Britten's early loves was a boy call Wulff? Later on, when they met after Venice, they did have sex, quite legally, much to the annoyance of his partner, Peter Piers. Can you see any resemblance here? I have a photo Jon.'

'Do you? How about a little fantasy game to amuse us for a minute or two? So you're the senior partner Roger, as we know. If I'm the Hemmings boy, you could play the Britten part? These two have said they shared a bed for weeks on end, probably more than eight weeks on one visit while the Hemmings boy learnt the part of Miles for The Turn of the Screw opera. Now Roger, using some imagination, what would the boy have said to his master, after his bath, and just as they got into bed together?'

'Ok master David, you'd better start.'

'No you Ben. I'm standing in the bedroom door, and you, my master and mentor, are standing by the bed, naked, holding a book.'

'How was your bath David?'

'Lovely, and thanks for doing my back and everything……and drying me so nicely. Can I come in your bed again tonight? That wind is really scary.'

'Of course. I was expecting you. I don't like you sleeping on your own.'

'Can I come in the same side as last night? I want to be close to you. I'm cold.'

A lengthy pause.

'Better now? You feel warm David.'

'No, I'm still cold. I love it when you hold me like this. Can we stay like this please? Until I fall asleep?'

'Yes my darling boy. You know I love you don't you?'

'Yes, like I love you. Can you cuddle me harder than that please. Like we did last night.'

'Of course. Like this?'

'Umm, yes like that.'

Another long pause.

'I'm like you now.'

'I know darling. You're very beautiful. Do you like being like this?'

'I want it like this all the time, until I go to sleep. Can we play that game again? Like last night? That made me want to go to sleep.'

'Our special game David? The one you liked?'

'Umm. And then the other game, when you've finished?'

'Of course darling. Can you remember what you have to do now?'

'Like this? Is this right now?'

The boy perches on top of Ben, knees either side of his chest, his hands on deep red nipples, as he gently, gingerly, lowers himself down.

'That's perfect my sweet boy. This little game first, just for a few minutes. Let me guide you.'

We laughed at ourselves, and our little fantasy, which of course was very far from the truth.

'Come on Jon. Think back to when you were almost thirteen, hormones jiggling up and down, you jiggling up and down. You're just in that waking phase with your hands between your legs, your sex harder than a length of Brighton rock, thinking about the sex you had the previous night with someone you desperately want to love you. Are you going to say no? No you're not, you're going to ask for it, surely?'

'I don't think anything ever happened sexually. Ok, David Hemmings adored Ben, and vice versa, but David turned out to be very straight. They both wanted to be together. They did love each other. I have no doubt that Ben was attracted to David sexually, but didn't do anything naughty. It's like Otta and Wulff.'

'At the very least the boy is going to need a very regular release. He's sleeping in his bed for eight weeks or more. Don't tell me that the boy never masturbated in all that time, or Ben for that matter. What's Ben going to do when the boy's excited and says he's ready for a play? Turn over and look the other way I suppose. Ben's besotted with David. No, he's going to look, and probably help him on his merry way with a bit of the right kind of fondling.'

But he could be right. When a soft mouth descends on that creamy white skin, stretched back to allow access to the most sensitive part of his anatomy, and the second most pleasurable place, he may say please will you Ben? It's difficult to believe it didn't happen. But that's only my firm opinion. It's not in any way proven. We just don't know. And I do need a serious talk with Otta.

Roger showed me the photo of Ben and David.

'Isn't it the same with Otta and Wulff?' Asks Roger.

'It's a fine line Roger. We all know that.'

Benjamin Britten and unkown boy

Benjamin Britten with an unknown boy.

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