Sunday, August 10, 2014



*Story contains M/M relations*

It was actually quite a nice bike, whatever the hell Hudson had said it was. Something with numbers and letters – or had that been the engine Hudson had been talking about? Vance shrugged at himself. Who cared, really? It was shiny and chrome and black, and Hudson looked like some kind of god sitting on it with his arms crossed and his hair flicking in the still-too-warm-for-that-time-of-the-day breeze.

There had been the four of them, as there usually was on the Sunday afternoons when the boys drove by and decided to pull into Vance's place for a quick, unannounced stop-by. But Cliff and Jeff had left an hour ago to sniff out pizza somewhere. Leroy had got a text from his wife twenty minutes after that and left with the engine roaring and a guilty-six-year-old's I've-been-out-playing-for-way-too-long-and-missed-curfew look on his face.

That had been kind of awkward, actually. Hudson didn't usually hang around by himself. So Vance had offered him a beer, and Hudson had turned it down because he was on the bike, and Vance had countered with a bottle of water, which Hudson had accepted but barely touched. Mostly they'd just been standing around in the driveway trying to strike up conversations that didn't really go anywhere.

Not that Vance wasn't thrilled with the opportunity to talk to Hudson one on one. On the contrary he was pumped over it. It would just help if Vance could manage to think up something interesting to say.

He cleared his throat, for the umpteenth time in ten minutes, picked at the corner of his jeans pocket where friction was starting to fray the edge, and looked at Hudson from the corner of his eye. Hudson had tossed off his leather jacket about two and half minutes after stopping, and Vance was having a hard time keeping his eyes off Hudson's bare forearms and the bit of extra skin on his pecs Vance could see due to the ridiculous muscle shirt Hudson wore stretched over expansive chest muscles.

"Must get pretty hot on that thing, hmm?" Vance finally offered in an effort to break the stretch of silence that had been growing way too long and far too thin. "What with the leather and jeans and all?"

Hudson grinned and Vance wasn't sure if it was relief at the restart of speech, or mirth at Vance's statement. "Nah, it's not too bad actually. Once the bike gets going and the wind comes rushing at you it's pretty nice."

"Oh," Vance's fingers continued tugging at denim. "I was going to say if you wanted to use the pool … " Why those words brought a blush to Vance's cheeks, Vance couldn't really say. " … Just to cool down or what have you."

"I'm okay," Hudson said, stretching one leg straight while Vance did his best not to notice how thigh muscles twitched under faded blue jean or how damn sexy motorcycle boots looked. "Thanks, though. Maybe next time?"

Vance nodded and stilled his head way too late to have not given off the impression of a Dippy bird. "Yeah, sure. Any time." He flushed again and didn't make eye contact when Hudson looked over with a small grin. "I mean, the pool's here, right? Someone should get some use out of it."

Hudson shifted on the seat and leather made crude sounds underneath him. "You don't use it?"

"Not as much as I should for the money I put into it," Vance laughed nervously.

"I know what you mean," Hudson reached between his legs and tapped the glimmering tank of the bike. "Trust me, I so, so hear you."

"You just need someone to ride with," Vance said without thinking – instantly regretting the words the moment they'd left his tongue. "I mean, other than the guys. They kind of have, like, other priorities and families and—"

"Lives?" Hudson finished with a laugh.

"No, no," Vance looked up and caught Hudson's eyes in a panic. "I don't mean that. I just meant, like, you're single and have more time on your hands, and … like … stuff like that." He let the words drift off and tore his eyes away in embarrassment. Cool, he thought. I've finally found a use for the pool. I can drown myself in it.

"Looks nice though, right?" Hudson grinned. "The pool?"

Vance shook his head, more at himself than anything else. "I guess so. That too," Vance said, pointing. Another blush grew on Vance's face when Hudson looked up quickly. "The bike too. It looks nice too, I mean. As well … "

Great, Vance thought. Sixty-two seconds ago he was desperate for something to say and now he couldn't make himself stop rambling. "Shiny," Vance said, his tongue ignoring his brain's plea to shut the help up, his limbs betraying him further by drawing an imaginary rainbow in the air between them with both hands.

"The bike?" Hudson asked with a playful frown.

When Vance looked up with another oh-my-God-what-did-I-just-say expression, Hudson laughed out loud. "I know what you mean, no worries." He tilted his head, "I didn't imagine you were talking about me." He paused, waited for Vance to say something but Vance had finally managed to wrestle words into silence and wasn't about to let go of the hold.

"Listen," Hudson continued. "I have an idea then. Next time I come by, we're going to use that pool of yours. But—" Hudson held up a finger and narrowed his eyes. "That means you have to help me out with the bike."

It took a second for Vance to respond. He was already picturing a very wet, very nearly naked Hudson diving into his pool. He had to wait until the surface of the water he was seeing in his mind swallowed the fictitious image of Hudson's body entirely and transformed it into nothing but shivering lines of masculinity. He shook his head, sighed and frowned. "Sorry … what?"

"The bike." Metal was tapped again as Hudson made his point. "You help me get out on the bike more." Vance didn't quite understand until Hudson reached behind him and unlatched the spare helmet. "Come on, you said you weren't doing anything anyway."

Vance's eyes flew wide. "Me? On that? With you? Highly unlikely. Most assuredly unlikely actually. I don't do death."

"Look at me," Hudson spread both arms out. "You think I float? I sink like a stone. I take just as much risk getting in your pool as you do getting on my bike!" He grinned at Vance's eye roll. "Come on, just try it. Go get a jacket. And nothing too light either. Leather if you have it."

"Um," Vance frowned. "No."

"Please?" Hudson made a ridiculous attempt at a pout. That kind of look just didn't seem right somehow on a face like his. Maybe it was the goatee, or the hair curling around Hudson's collar, or the scar on his forehead above his right eye that Vance had yet to hear how the story behind. Either way, puppy-dog-eyes just weren't Hudson's forte.

The repeating image of Hudson diving into the pool was doing wonders against Vance's resolve, however. "Err … I … I have this thing against machines that can do mass amounts of damage to my body and that I have little or no control over."

Hudson smiled. "It's okay. You don't need to have control over it." Vance lifted an eyebrow and Hudson's grin grew. "I do. Matter of fact, I have enough control over it for both of us. As long as you move with me, as long as you follow my lead, I can guarantee that I know this beast enough to keep us both safe."

"Yeah?" Vance asked, skeptical, but interested enough to throw a sharp look at the machine and size it up mentally. "You sure?"

"I guaranteed, didn't I?" Hudson said, tapping the machine yet again. "And next weekend, long as the weather holds out, we'll make it the pool if you still want to."

Vance pulled his lip between his teeth and stared at the motorcycle. He wanted to, God knew he wanted to. Not necessarily for the feel of the machine between his legs, not for the thrill of the open road, but for the press of his body against Hudson's – the melding of two forms over one machine that made them a collective whole. It was just … intimidating as all hell.

Vance squinted up at Hudson, the late afternoon sun still bright and hot, almost level to eyeshot. "You'll go easy?"

"I promise."

You're not going to do this, his conscience questioned. Are you mad? Have you lost your mind? And without thinking about it, Vance nodded at his internal mortification. Yeah, it was scary. Nerve-wracking actually. But damn, whether it Hudson, or just the idea that Vance was about to do something he'd never tried before, the concept was growing … intriguing. "A jacket you say?"

"Yep," Hudson nodded patiently. "I'll wait."

And it surprised Vance far more than Hudson when Vance turned back to house to get his Danier. Fuck it, Vance told himself. We only live once.

The End

Copyright © 2012 AF Henley

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