Remembering (Epilogue)


By Ian Kovnats (Gaystoryman)

Copyright © 2008 ? All Rights Reserved


Trent stared out the big bay window of the front room. He could see the horizon, see the orchard fields below. He sighed, as he felt the warm air blowing into the room from the opened front door. He turned his face, to look at the front stoop, to see the man slowly making his way down the ramp, towards the front roadway.

He felt a small twinge in his heart, as he saw how he moved so slowly, the pain of his injuries showing across his face, as he began to make his way towards the front gate. The mail sign was up, and there was no denying him. For several days now, Rob had made this journey, accepting the pain it gave him, refusing to let Trent go.

It was his choice, his decision and Trent wasn’t about to argue. He could see the determination on his friends face, knowing how much it cost him, knowing too that even now, several years after his injuries in Iraq, the pain was never gone. Well that wasn’t entirely true, least in his mind.

There were moments when it seemed like Rob had no pain, nor did he either. He had suffered no injuries, no scars covered his body as they did Rob’s, though his scars were within. He still could hear the General’s words, the scathing remarks, and his own equally harsh retorts.

It was a long time back now, but they still hurt. Yet, one day soon, he knew he’d let them go, forget them as they deserved to be forgotten, but not just yet. He may have aged in years, but in looks he had seemed to just get younger. He kept blaming Rob for that, because they were finally together, finally accepting of the love that they shared.

Moving to this valley had been hard, had cost him every penny he had saved, begged, or borrowed, but then too, Rob had done the same. Yet for him it had been hard, because Rob needed so much, even though he rarely asked for anything. Then that was Rob, he never did complain, and so they had bought this small little orchard in California.

He had expected some troubles, specially if the neighbouring people found out about him and Rob, which they were bound to do. After all, his Court Martial wasn’t exactly a well kept secret. Nor was Rob’s either, which had really hit the wires like a ton of bricks. It was bigger than if the Titanic had been sunk, all over again.

Still he had been surprised by how welcomed he & Rob had been. Oh there were a couple who grumbled, and who would never have him or Rob on their guest list, but then again, he wouldn’t have them on his. For the most part, the folks in the valley accepted them both, and while it had been a bit strained at the start, things had gotten a lot easier over the few years they had lived there.

Many had watched at how determined Rob had been. He didn’t act like any cripple they had ever seen, and while no one expected much, they soon came to realize that Rob was a force to reckon with. While the Doctors had said he’d never walk again, that the rest of his life would be confined to a wheelchair, Rob didn’t accept it.

And there he was, outside on his own two feet. Granted, he wouldn’t win any marathons, but he was lurching ahead, on his own. No wheelchair was in sight, just a pair of canes now. The crutches had disappeared six months ago, and Rob had vowed that the canes too would disappear. Trent believed him too, even if the Doctors were still a bit sceptical. But then, they didn’t understand the man, or his character.

Trent was just realizing it, himself, as he watched his friend slowly making his way down the hill, towards the gate. The small red flag of the mailbox up, showing they had mail. Rob was certain that today it would be there, that this was the day.

He smiled, realizing that he too was just as anxious. It was rather special, and frankly, he never thought he’d see this day come. Certainly not as a teenager, nor even after he had his first sexual experience, back on his eighteenth birthday, had he ever thought this day would come.

Looking back on his life, on his time both with and away, from Rob, he had to admit. The sex had been something else, specially that first time, but in all honesty, the sex lately, had been more than just a release. He couldn’t really explain it, it wasn’t like they had a lot of options either.

Rob had come back damaged, yet despite all that, the sex seemed to be as good, if not more enjoyable. Sure, they were limited, at first, and Rob liked to joke that it was the sex that was making him push himself, so that he could really get off. Course, Trent knew that each time they became physical, it was a hard choice for Rob. The pain, in moving, was real. It was a constant reminder of his service in Iraq, a constant reminder of his personal sacrifice.

Just trying to move his legs at times, to spread them apart, caused him pain. Certainly at the beginning of their living together, yet Rob never complained. In fact, he kept instigating it, wanting it, even though he had to have felt more pain than pleasure. Still, that was Rob, and who was he, to deny him that?

They had talked about it, even with the Doctors. That was a discussion he wouldn’t forget. Looking out at Rob now, he remembered how he had been sitting with the Specialist, when Rob out of the blue asked him when it would be okay for him to have anal sex. He had almost fallen off his chair, and the look on the Doctor’s face was priceless.

Still Rob hadn’t let him off the hook, despite his unwillingness to get into the details. Rob on the other hand, well he wanted to know if certain positions would cause harm, to his recovery. The Doctor was as white as a ghost, and given that he was an African American, that was one hell of a feat. Still, Rob had persisted, and when he got his answer that in all honesty the Doctor couldn’t say that it would cause any added damage, Rob had simply turned to Trent, and smiled.

Course he had also blurted out that Trent could pick up the Condoms on the way home, which had made him have a pretty bad coughing fit. The Doctor on the other hand, had glanced away, but you could see his own surprise.

Then that too, was Rob. As he had said afterwards, why should he feel ashamed of how he liked sex? It was a natural physical function, and as long as he wasn’t going to cause any more damage to his already damaged body, he was damned if he would pass on trying. Plus, as he pointed out, he had some new memories to try and make, which had ended any objections Trent had.

Thinking now of it, of coming back to their small little apartment, at that time. He was rather amazed at just how good of a memory that first time had been. Maybe it had been all the talk, the touching to position Rob, but he had to admit, it had been a memorable night of passion. One that certainly had rivalled their first experiences, when they had been eighteen, out camping.

Staring at his friend now, he realized just how special their moments had become. It was those earlier memories, that had brought them together, had brought them to this very point in their lives. Sex for him, had always been more of a physical thing. Least when it had involved other men, not Rob. Yet those times with Rob, before now, before his war wounds, had always been more than just a physical release. Course he hadn’t seen it that way, then. He sure as hell did now, as a smile crossed his weathered face.

Being an Officer, being in charge of other people’s lives, had taken its toll on him, but the news of his friends wounds, had sent him over the top. He had known, virtually the instant he had heard, that he couldn’t do it anymore, that he couldn’t handle that kind of responsibility. He also didn’t know how he’d handle life, if Rob wasn’t somehow a part of it.

Fortunately the Doctors then, had been wrong, and it seemed since too. Rob had made progress, but the physical act of sex, was vastly different. Trent realized that despite his advanced years, he looked forward to their intimate moments. He yearned for them too, like the time when Rob had been hospitalized, for complications.

God, how he had imagined the worse. How he had thought that somehow their sex had been the cause of it all, though it hadn’t been. Still it hadn’t prevented him from thinking of it, from vowing he would not press it. Yet, seeing Rob in that bed, again, had made him realize just how connected they had become.

That first hospital night, when he was still running a high fever, and under some powerful sedatives, how he had looked up at Trent, winked, and asked him to rub his itch. Trent had almost split a gut, because he knew exactly what itch Rob had wanted scratched. The guy was more of a sex pig, than he had ever thought one man could be.

What had made it so funny, was that the male orderly was in the room, and offered to scratch whatever was irritating Rob. Fact that he was rather cute, and had been the subject of an early discussion on how Rob wouldn’t mind a nice sponge bath from him, only added to the moment. And in typical Rob fashion, he had merely looked at the orderly, and told him that only his hubby could scratch that particular itch.

The guy’s face had been a study in changing seasons. From concern, to consternation, to sudden realization, to embarrassment. He was a nice guy, but you could see how his face dropped when it dawned on him exactly what Rob had been asking for. He had stared at him, then over at Trent, his lips quivering, his eyes fluttering, as he tried to figure out what to say, if anything.

He opted for nothing, and quickly left the room, with Rob trying to lift himself up, to stare at his butt as he swished out of the room. It was those moments, that really made what they had special. While Rob’s mouth was certainly getting them more notoriety than Trent was comfortable with, it really didn’t matter at the end of the day.

When they would lay together, side by side, and Trent would have to undress Rob. How they would talk about the day, about those little moments when the straight world had been turned upside down by a crippled queer. How he enjoyed his moments of watching their faces, at how their mouths would tremble, trying to say something, without being offensive.

At the very beginning, after Rob had been evacuated to Germany, for better care, Trent had thought it was simply his way of getting back. He had been surprised at how often Rob would let people know about who he was, about his homosexuality. It bothered him, because while the cat was out of the bag for him, too, he didn’t think it right to flaunt it.

Yet when he had casually mentioned it to Rob, it was what had set off their first real disagreement. Hell, it had been a knock em out, drag em down, battle royal actually. Oh, he could smile now, but back then, he didn’t see any humor in it. He had even wondered why he had thrown his whole military career away, on someone like Rob, but finally the shouting grew to a distant roar, and he began to actually listen to the words.

That discussion had been one for the books. The way Rob’s face had twisted in anger, his too. Never before had he felt such anger, such disgust too. There were things he had said that he instantly had regretted, but Rob wouldn’t let him off the hook either. He had pursued it, like a dog with a bone in its jaws. No way was he going to let it go, and now, well now Trent understood it better.

Course, when Rob had said he damn well needed to know where Trent stood on it, given how he was planning to spend his entire life with him, well it changed the whole argument. It also made him realize that in many ways, Rob had planned it that way. He was a calculating son of a bitch, at times, but then, maybe that was why so many respected him. He saw not just the next hill, but beyond the whole range of hills.

He knew that it would be hard for Trent, not the gay stuff, but what if Rob’s determination to walk again, didn’t work out? Could Trent handle that, could their relationship handle that? In some ways, the whole being gay thing, wasn’t what they fought about, but the feelings of guilt, of fear too.

Just like back when he had been eighteen, unwilling to admit he liked guys, that he wanted dick not pussy. Now it was the same, in many ways. Was he really willing to spend to his remaining years looking after a cripple? Was he prepared to have his sex life limited by braces, by broken limbs?

Yet each time he had thought about it, he too had wondered, but the memories, they were just too much, too overpowering. Still, Rob knew that too, making sure that Trent did, as well. It was all part of the whole transition, from military life, to one of domestic bliss, as Rob put it. Only thing was, domestic bliss had its pitfalls, its battlefields too.

At first he didn’t think he could handle it, making his private life, public. Yet with Rob, it was like, it didn’t matter, because he had him to come home to, to be with. Strange, because he had never felt so alive, as when around Rob. Specially after the trial, after what had been described as a brilliant military career had come to a close.

None of it matter, and yet sitting alone in that dingy apartment, after the final gavel of the Courts Martial, after the rendered judgement of his peers, it didn’t seem to matter. He had Rob, and Rob him.

They had lain on the bed, the hot stuffiness of the room making the shirts stick to their skin, when Rob had looked up at him, and just smiled. It was like the future didn’t seem so dark, so ominous. It was as if a great weight had been lifted from his shoulders, as Rob pulled himself up on the bed, so his back lay against the headboard.

What if it doesn’t get any better than this? Can you handle it Trent?

He had seen the look, seen the way he was being given a way out. Trent knew that look, had seen it many times, when he had even grabbed at it. As he studied his friend, and his friend him, he saw it all flash before him. The tent, the way the sleeping bags had been laid out for them both.

But there wasn’t any eighteen year olds spread out on them. Instead there was a wheelchair to one side, metal crutches next to it, and shiny metal braces on the seat of the wheelchair. He could see two old men, hair white for the most part, where there was any hair. It was them both, but not in the past, but the future.

He had shaken his head, to clear the image, but it persisted, as he realized that his mind was transporting him to what it might be, if things didn’t get better, if Rob didn’t manage to confound the Doctors.

It scared him, to peer into the possible future. Here he was, discharged, unsure what he would be doing at his age, with a cripple to care for. Maybe that was harsh, but it was the truth, and one thing he knew, the truth never stayed hidden for long. Could he cope? Could he manage the rest of his life, looking after someone who couldn’t look after themselves?

Not the sex, because that was what it would be, but the rest of it. The having to help him to the bathroom, and afterwards. The having to bathe him, to clean him up, because he couldn’t do it for himself. Could he spend the rest of his life, dealing with that, as well as all the rest? The medical bills, the medical crisis that would surely follow as they both grew older, could he deal with that, and still love him?

Looking at the vision, of what might be, he wondered if he could, and he felt a cold chill in his heart, despite the warmth of the small room. Despite his shirt being sticky with his sweat, he felt a coldness in his heart, as his eyes looked downwards, and across the room. There was the wheelchair, dark and forbidding, the crutches off to the side. Just as in his vision, but they looked dark, forbidding, as he turned his eyes back to his friend.

Already he had made sacrifices, to be with him. He had outed himself, had thrown his entire career away, and for what? Damaged Goods? That was what some would think, would believe, and yet, did he believe that? Was Rob damaged?

Sure, he had no feeling in his legs, his arms were barely strong enough to pull himself up into a sitting position, and while he had managed to wheel the chair for a little distance, he still couldn’t get around with being pushed. He might make it to the bathroom, but that exhausted him, least then it did.

The sun shone off some stones, blinding him for a minute, as he saw the struggling figure of the man, making his way down the road towards the gate. Yes, now he could walk, now he could manage a lot more than just wheeling himself to the edge of a bathroom 40 or so feet away.

Back then, they didn’t know what lay ahead. Back then, Trent had no idea what Rob could manage, or not. Neither did Rob, and the question had to be asked, the way out had to be given. He could see that now, see it then too. He knew Rob was just as frightened, but he was thinking of Trent, when he had asked.

Trent hadn’t answered Rob, instead he had simply stood up, and took off his sweat soaked shirt, tossing it aside, while unbuckling his belt and throwing his clothes off. His eyes had never left Rob’s, which seemed to grow wider with each discarded piece of Trent’s clothing.

He stood there, stark naked, as he stared at his friend. It was like yesterday, as he watched his friend make it to the gate now. His body had tingled, as he had stood there, seeing the way Rob’s face looked at him. Seeing how his eyes sparkled, as he moved slowly towards him. Rob had licked his lips, as Trent moved around the bed, to stand beside him.

The way his face looked up at him, as he towered over him. How he flinched, as he reached out with his hand, to tussle his hair, to run the back of his hand down his friend’s face. He could see it all now, as if he was there. How hot his cheeks felt, how flushed he was, as he let his hand move down, as he sat on the edge of the bed.

There was no mistaking the fear that existed either. Yet he seemed unwilling to let it stop him, as his hand moved down his friends face, to rest lightly on his chest, near one side of him. He could feel the irregular beat of the heart, feel him sucking in air, afraid to let it out, until forced to. The way his whole body seemed to be on edge, as if wound up tight, beyond its ability, ready to explode. Trent felt it all, as his hand rested there, as they looked at each other.

Yes the vision of the camping trip had been altered. There was a wheelchair, but it was still the same tent, still the same sleeping bags. So there was some added stuff, it didn’t change how he had felt that time when they were just eighteen, it hadn’t changed how excited he felt, being touched by Rob, or by him touching Rob.

Nothing was really different. Sure, time had marched on, things had changed, but so? They were still the same, older, more experienced, had more to share, so what if Rob couldn’t run a marathon anymore? So what if he needed Trent to shift his legs, to lay them out? It was still him, still the same man inside, and wasn’t that what had made him fall for him, in the first place?

He had let his hand move downwards, to run across Rob’s crotch, as he thought about it all, as he thought about how he had always liked Rob, how before that birthday party, he had been attracted to him. It wasn’t his good looks, wasn’t his lock of hair that he would wipe away, or how his basket would bulge at times.

It was how he felt after they talked, how he would lay next to him, on those sleep overs, and just be there. It wasn’t his dick, or his ass, it was him. It was how it felt to have his warm breath blow across his chest, or his face. It was how he felt each time he looked at him with those eyes, always sparkling.

That is what made him want him, made him dream of him when they were apart. It was how he was always watching Trent’s back, without it seeming like he was. His hand had stopped over Rob’s groin, and he began to unbuckle his pants, to let his hand slide underneath, as his eyes stared deeply into those of Rob. He could feel him, not just his hard penis, but the man himself.

It had made him shudder then, and it did again now. He felt the rolling tremor inside, just as he had back then, as he told him, in his own way, that it didn’t matter. The fear he had, seemed gone the instant his hand touched Rob’s penis. The very instant he felt his warm body, felt his heart beating, he knew he could manage whatever the future would hurl at them both.

If Rob never walked, if this was indeed as good as it got, he’d manage. It wasn’t some form of penance either, because he didn’t see it as an obligation. Just as then, he felt the excitement inside, felt the tingling as he undid the pants some more, as he pushed them open.

He breathed in deeply then, smelling his scent, his aroma. Just as then, he could smell it now, feel it waft around his nostrils, float deep down into his nasal passage to make his heart quiver with the excitement. Just as then, Trent could feel it all over again.

How good it had felt to touch him, to let his hand move down, and push the shorts down, so that Rob’s penis stuck up, fully aroused. His legs might not work, but that third leg had no trouble standing up. How it had felt, had trembled to his light touch. Trent could feel it throb, through the tips of his fingers, as he let them move up and down the hard pole. His eyes could see the little flickers inside of Rob’s eyes, as his fingers moved up and down, then around the head.

His eyes never left Rob’s, as his fingers seemed to know where to move, how to move, no matter in which way Rob’s cock jerked, or moved to his touch. It all seemed like they were connected in ways, that were impossible to be, but he felt it then, felt it now, and yes, he had felt it ever since. They were connected.

His body shook, just as it did that time too. Trent could feel the way his legs grew stiff, how his heart began to race, as his fingers just moved across the throbbing pole, at how they sensed the blood pumping through the organ, feeling every drop as it rushed past. It didn’t make sense, but he could feel each drop, feel its warmth, its very essence, and he could see it too, see it in Rob’s eyes.

The way he looked, how when his heart skipped a beat, he could see that too, see the chest rising and falling as his breathe became labored, became shallow, as his body reacted to his simple touch. Trent could hear his questions to, his constant question of if he was sure, if he was certain.

Yet as he heard the question being asked, his body was responding, telling him yes, soothing his frightened nerves, with reassurances, that no words could ever give. How calm he had felt, as his fingers moved down the hard pole, to circle the shaft, to feel its power, as it shook to his touch. How at ease he felt, as his body gave Rob the answer he wanted, the answer he needed to hear.

Closing his eyes, he could see it all again. See how the vision of the tent, switched from two old men laying on the sleeping bag, to two eighteen year olds, exhausted by the night’s passion. He smiled, as he felt his groin stir, as he felt Rob’s cum spurting through his fingers.

How neither of them seemed surprised either, as they just stared at each other, as Rob’s body shook, as his milk flowed. How he felt his own body shake, felt his own heart quicken, as it felt the hot jizz flow past his fingers. It was as good as if they had been having intercourse. The moment was right, for just what they had done.

How Rob’s chest had heaved, how his eyes had shone, as the last of his milk dribbled out. The way he had looked at him, had felt the calm entering his friend’s body, and mind. They never did speak about the ‘what if’ again, they simply didn’t need to. They had answered the question, the only way they could, with deeds, not words.

Trent heard his name, and he shook his head, to stare out at the front. There was Rob, at the mailbox, and he was waving the envelope. He smiled, as he left his post, to head outside. The blast of hot air assailed him, but he didn’t care as he jogged down the path, to his friend. Trent could see his eyes sparkling, see how his body seemed a bit more erect, a bit stronger.

Coming to stand in front of him, he saw the State Seal on the envelope. He smiled, as he held Rob’s hand, as he ripped it open, to pull it out. He saw the fancy writing, saw it all as Rob turned from looking at the certificate to look up at him. The canes were in one hand, suddenly fell to the ground, as Rob just looked at Trent.

It’s official now

Trent felt the tears at the corner of his eyes, as he saw the small grin on his friend’s face. It was like being eighteen again, as he leaned forward, and pushed the hand holding the certificate to one side. With his other hand, he lifted up his friend’s face, and stared into it.

Was there any doubt?

As he said it, he leaned forward and kissed Rob fully on the mouth. A car whizzed past, honking as it did, but he barely heard it above the roar of his heart. He felt Rob’s body pulse, felt it shake, as they held each other, tasting each other. The tent, the crackling fire, all of it was there, parading past them, as they clung to each other, feeling the satisfaction of having reached this moment, together.

The license lay between them, clenched in both of their hands, as they broke apart, and looked into each other’s eyes, for the millionth time. It felt right, now, just as it had back then, so many years ago. Rob smiled, as he held onto Trent. His body swayed, but he reached up, and wiped away that rebellious lock of hair, grinning as he did, recognizing the glint in Trent’s face.

We’re legal now

He couldn’t help but grin, at seeing the joy in Rob’s face. Deep down inside, he knew he too was just as happy, just as excited. At long last, part of their struggle was over, part of their pain was now gone.

You Non Coms, we have always been legal.

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