What is WIPpet Wednesday?
WIPpet Wednesday is a blog hop where authors share from their current works in progress – expertly organised/hosted by Emily Witt – and the excerpt has to relate to the date in some way. For links to other fabulous authors’ WIPpets, visit: http://www.inlinkz.com/wpview.php?id=355404
It’s 28th September, 2016, so I’m going with 28 sparagraphs from Chapter Nine of the one true book I’ve got to finish one day. This is a favorite part. It was originally written in 2012. So, it’s not been edited at all. This is from a WIP called The Archivist.
After all this time, I wonder what it was that made me feel so responsible for Seamus’s death. I accused myself of being the one who would be dead, because it’s my fault that I wasn’t driving. He took the wheel because he wanted to be safe, and yet the man who plowed into us didn’t care. I think back to that night and remember walking to the drivers side door, and feeling Seamus pull me back out and walk me to the passenger side. Pull the seat belt across my body and leave a kiss on my lips.
We were talking about going to the opera for Christmas instead of spending time with my sister who had just moved to town. We were kid fighting about how wrong it was to leave her out in the cold, I think I was in the middle of saying, “We’ll kidnap her from that ghastly restau…omph.” Then I just remember the crashing sound of metal and glass. If I pinpoint the moment it happened, I can literally hear Seamus’s blood splash against my face as my own head smashed into the crackling sound of glass splintering around my ear. I can hear the minute sound of my bones snapping as I’m slammed into the doorframe.
I’m certain it will remain with me forever. I can’t forget about that time with him, around him. I think at one point I licked the blood and tears that had mixed on my face, so I’m certain I have him in my blood stream. And I’ve almost forgotten every place I’d been between his burial and meeting Hutch. I’d thought it had only been three months and yet I find out nearly three years had passed.
I went through the motions, if it hadn’t been for Mora and Michael who were there for me, they had notes and pictures and memories for me. Because I was truly not being aware of my surroundings, not keeping anything inside. I’d go and make a face with people, but the experience would hit my mind that had become a steel sieve.
It wasn’t until I ran into Hutch that I came to my senses. He was a combination of the man before me and the man on the wall. Something about Hutch excited me. Made me feel the way I’d felt the first time I’d been with Donny, and like the first days with Seamus. I didn’t want to fuck this up. And, maybe all he wants is a buddy to go to baseball games with. I mean, maybe I’m putting too much into the situation, he didn’t come out and say he was gay. He just invited me to meet him at a Giants game.
I didn’t know the first thing about baseball, I’ve never really been a sports kind of guy, not even a watcher most times. I’ll admit to getting hot at seeing a guy in a tight football uniform or hoping that the tight short shorts of a soccer player might ride up to reveal some of his ass or balls. And, I’m know I’m not the only one online who looks for sports porn, I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s how a lot of the gay straights are doing it. Getting by with jerking off to their favorite sports god.
So, why I said yes to the baseball game I’ll never be quite sure, other than the fact that I wanted to see this guy again. There was something about his half grown in beard, or the glasses or the way he ran his hands through his hair. His lips were a plus, they were so kissable it’s the only word that comes to mind. Also, there’s something about his eyes that remind me of His eyes, not the color, but the bridge of his nose, the space between the eyes. I want to see him again to make sure it’s not just my imagination or my yearning to find Him. Even though I found Him on a mural off a sidewalk, found Him and I wasn’t even looking. Which is why I think Hutch is such a catch.
I excused his new phone for not contacting me sooner, and when he called I wasn’t expecting it so much. So, when he asked about the Giants game, my mouth automatically said yes. I’m in jeans, an oxford shirt, a grey and orange sweater because it’s the closest thing I have to the home team colors. It was a thrift store buy, when I raced down to find something to wear. I’ve got my penny loafers with pennies in them. I feel really out of place, like some one told me that the place to find books and artwork was in this gigantic stadium where they sell peanuts and beer.
I stepped out of the cab, paid and turned around to the loudest and craziest group of people I’d ever seen. They were in Giants shirts, pants, and shorts. They had G’s painted on their faces and chests. There were women sporting G tattoos on their backs, necks and shoulders. There were huge families and a couple grandma’s and grandpa’s. Lots of men with men and lots of women with women. I couldn’t tell who was gay and who was straight and I think for the first time in a long time it didn’t matter.
As I walked through the throng of people, I saw him standing looking for me. I assumed, at least. I got close to him and waved. He saw me and reached out to hug me. “I totally thought you’d flake on me. I mean, it’s not everyday a stranger asks a guy out on a date to a baseball game.”
Well there it is, was it a joke? Was it a real date? How do I answer? With something equally obscure or something accurate. I chose to just be me. “Well, I’d never know if it was a date if I didn’t show up.” I smiled,
He laughed, “Well… shall we?” Shall? He’s got manners.
I bowed, “Yes, Sir we shall.” I fell in beside him and we walked a few hundred feet, in a few more minutes we were in the stadium and walking down towards the field. I was shocked to find out that we had seats right behind home plate. When I sat, Hutch leaned over, “you get the best look at their asses from this spot.” Again that grin and those lips I wanted to slid my finger over and then kiss passionately.
It was a whirlwind romance, after the baseball game, I took him to the opera. He confided in me that he didn’t really get it and I did the same with the baseball. We laughed over the lack of culture in both of our lives. One night, he wanted to know if I’d be interested in going away for the weekend, he spoke of renting a car and driving down to Santa Barbara. That’s how I found out he didn’t have a car. I admitted that I had one. He was shocked, and I took him to the garage beneath my loft, where the pristine Metropolitan sat. Hutch was shocked, his hands caressed the fins, the top, the leather seats, the switch that lowered the top.
“Robbery do you mind if we take it on the trip?” Hutch asked.
I smiled and thought of Uncle Nicky and I’m sure he would be happy going where we were headed. During the drive down, I found out that Hutch had a PhD in Anthropology, but gave it all up for time with cars. He repaired cars, and occasionally published a paper or two. He told me that he wasn’t ready to settle down to a tenure track position, wasn’t ready to do the shit that needed to be done to be the success his education put him in contention with.
I told him about Donny, and cried as I explained what happened with Seamus. He tried to console me several times, placing his hand on my knee. And I think that night as we slept, I had never felt so safe in all my life.
He pulled me to him, whispered, “You’re not responsible. I believe you lived so that you could come into my life.”
That’s what I fell asleep to. And like the fear of most gay men, I woke expecting to be holding onto a body pillow, instead of the loving man that woke up in my arms. I smiled and said something silly. Our toes were touching, and I said in a silly, baby voice. “Toes are important.”
He laughed and responded with, “Robbery toes are truly important, do you know why?”
Stunned, it took me a few minutes to respond. “No, why?”
“Because Hutch toes feel safe with Robbery toes.”
And then I pounced him, kissed him and never looked back.
I asked him to move in two weeks later. He showed up with a suitcase at the door. “Is that all you have?”
“Well everything else is in a moving truck downstairs, I don’t think you have the room for all of it.”
“It’s a big loft, I’m sure we can fit it in places around here.” As I was speaking we took the elevator down to the street, he opened the back to reveal tools. Yes tools of all sorts and sizes, there were meters and gauges, there were oils pans and tire irons. There were even a couple of tires back there. “Uh, you are right, there isn’t anywhere inside the loft this will fit.”
I thought about it for a second and realized that I had an entire carport, I led him down the street to the back of the building, entered the code and walked toward the corner where my Metropolitan sat. It was a decent space. Other carports had been enclosed, mine sat empty with just the blue and white car. I had the spot against a brick wall, on the other side of the car was a Mercedes. Shiny, black, new and owned by a shiny man named Stepaneides, who had to bring his two girlfriends to the door so that I wouldn’t jump him in the dark one night. Those were his exact words. I laughed and shook my head, so I’m sure it would be better if we got a contractor to build the walls.
“Lets just out your stuff in this area surrounding the Metro.” He smiled and ran outside to bring the truck in to unload. I tell you this now, I can’t imagine that I fell in love with a man who is a man. Grease under his fingernails man, contact sport man, beer and chips man. I’m most comfortable in chinos, oxford shirts & sweaters and he’d be comfortable in coveralls and nothing else. I’m sorta good with that.