I have a boy.
It should be perfect. But it's not.
Ben claims I'm clinging to Rob, and twink says nothing is ever good enough for Dr. Fell, and Dave just looks sad that he's not making me happy.
And I'm pissed with myself, too. It should be right. I have a boy, a dog, a cabin, a bike, and a part-time job.
I can't even say what's wrong. Yeah, gaining a stepmom was a shake up, and having a live-in boy of my own is downright unsettling, but those, on balance, are good things.
I throw Ghia a stick. She snorts and bounds away after it. I sigh and give myself a mental shake. I'm being an idiot. I look at my watch. Dave'll be home soon. I'm almost lonely without him. Pathetic.
His job starts at dawn, but it gets him home by mid afternoon, so it works out well enough. He's taken to his apprenticeship out at the airport as if it were designed for him, and I tolerate the fact that it has him working Saturdays. We get Wednesdays in exchange. He's all but promised a job if he passes his FAA test at the end of his apprenticeship. He leaves study guides for his Airframe and Powerplant licenses all over the cabin. We've had some sharp words about tidiness. I help him study, but it's not like tutoring Rob for his GED. I can't understand most of what Dave is reading.
Ghia head butts my feet. I've ignored her stick.
"Aw, come on, girl. Let's go for a run until your Dave gets back."
She leaps around while I change out of my boots, and then we lope off together into the woods.
Dave and I had awkward words earlier in the week. He wants to be just mine, even if I fuck the other boys as I train them, but I feel uncomfortable not letting the guys have him in exchange. Fair's fair. And Dave's a young kid. He doesn't know what monogamy means yet, and his previous lovers have been inept. He deserves some fun. I pause while Ghia catches up from investigating an exciting scent, and I amend my objections.
I'd love Dave to be just mine, and the guys would be cool with it; I'm just being a bit of a dick about Dave asking for what he wants.
"You're right, girl. I'm not being fair. I yelled at him for not telling me stuff, and now I'm being an ass about him saying what he wants."
Hell, is it worse to talk to yourself or to a dog?
"Being overheard is worse, sir."
"Shit! Dave, you're a sneaky little bastard. How much did you hear?"
Dave stays out of reach. "I'm quiet, not sneaky. Everything you said to Ghia, sir. You're not an ass, sir, but it is hard to know when I'm allowed to say what I want."
I beckon him over. "Always allowed, boy. Just no sulking if you don't get what you want."
Dave laughs and comes into his welcome-home hug. "Yes, sir, but sometimes what you want is the hard part."
"Of course it is. No point otherwise, is there?" I squeeze him tight, but Ghia is going crazy needing Dave's attention. I release him so he can rub her ears.
Dave drapes his arm around my waist as we go back to the cabin. It's not, he points out, PDA if it's in the middle of private woods, so I tolerate our hips bumping as we walk.
Dave doesn't reopen the conversation about being shared, and I'm glad to let it drop. We're going to revise our contract in a few weeks, so perhaps I'll have my head sorted by then. He seems cheerful enough as he works on his truck and maintains my Fat Boy. I set up my new project on the porch, so we're companionable even though we don't talk. He's absorbed in tinkering with some greasy part, and I'm hand-cutting dovetail joints for the box I'm making. I'm not a cabinetmaker -- I'm a framing carpenter by trade -- but I can do fine work when required. I don't enjoy fiddly work, but it's important that I make this myself.
Dave takes a break and brings me iced tea. He sits by my feet for awhile while he drinks a glass. He watches my hands as I work and just smiles when I catch his gaze. He doesn't ask what I'm doing, but he kisses my knee before he goes back to his truck.
It's a good afternoon -- both of us busy and peaceful. I let him get away with just a blow job that evening, and he goes to bed early.
While Dave is at work, I finish my box construction and start the lid inlay. It's tricky work, and I get pissy, but, by the time it's finished, I'm pleased. Rob's box is as small and dark as he was. It doesn't need to be big to hold his drawing of me and his obituary. I've set Mom's eternity ring into the lid. I put it on the mantle next to Chris' drawing of Rob. Dave has put my crumpled carnation from Mrs. P and Dad's wedding there. What a smush he is. I catch myself and laugh: I'm the one making a memory box.
I notice Dave eyeing the box later, but he doesn't say anything. I see a glimmer of hurt in Dave's face, but damn it, he's here and Rob isn't, so he has no call to be jealous.