As we head towards the last days of 2017, I thought I'd post a taster of what will be my first release of 2018. I've still a handful of chapters to go, and the book will need some heavy duty editing (including this extract).
This is Billy and Dashiell's story (DASH-uhhll, although pronounciations vary). That's not the title, because I have no idea what to call it! This is a departure for me, as the story is written in 1st person POV. This is where Billy and Dashiell meet for the first time and it's from Dashiell's point of view. Be warned, it ain't a romantic start...
My thoughts shifted to the beers in the fridge at home and some late evening telly. That pulled me up short. Here I was walking out of a bar filled with plenty of men I could have some no-strings fun with, and I was looking forward to sprawling out in front of the box watching a re-run of Terminator. It was almost enough to make me turn around, go back to the others and let Andy pay for me. But not quite. Maybe I'd drop into The Crown on the way home, the drinks were a fraction of the price and there was always some fun to be had. My hand went to the back pocket of my jeans, feeling the flat little packets. Yep, everything was there for the night ahead. But there was one thing I needed first, and that was a piss.
Instead of pushing my way out onto the street, I followed the sign to the toilets, pointing up a narrow set of stairs. At the top and down a long corridor, and through another set of doors, they were cut off from the busy bar at ground level and very little of the noise from below filtered its way upwards. Which is why I could hear the muffled cries and grunts and gasps, and the laughter. I hesitated. I didn't want to walk in on a couple of guys getting down and dirty, but I was straining to relieve myself. There was no way I was going make it more than a hundred yards, let alone home. If anybody was getting their end away, they could do the decent thing and lock themselves in one of the cubicles. I pushed the door and it didn't move. I pushed again, harder this time, and it opened an inch or two before it was slammed back. Somebody was deliberately blocking it. Another cry came through the door and a sharp gasp. Whoever was in there wasn't there because they wanted to be, and they weren't having fun. I put my shoulder to the door, and shoved hard. It flew open and I staggered in, just keeping my footing. And stopped dead.
The kid who'd come in earlier was pushed front first up against the wall. There was a smear of red on the wall tiles, from the blood that was running from his nose. His jeans and briefs were half way down his legs but his jeans were tight enough that they didn’t allow him to splay his legs, and all I could think was thank Christ for that.
A guy was pressed up against him, one hand on the kid's neck. With the other, he was rummaging around his flies, his dick already out.
"Fuck off, this is none of your business," he hissed.
"Yeah. Do yourself a favour and go, or wait and take your turn." The words were accompanied by a filthy laugh and I swung around. The guy I'd shoved away from the door was sharp featured, and feral looking. I didn't stop to answer, instead I shot my fist forward. A spray of blood, a high pitched wail and he crumpled to his knees, his hands clamped to his face as he crawled away. The guy just behind the kid fumbled his dick, now as limp as spaghetti, into his jeans. Maybe he thought getting into a punch-up with his cock flapping around wasn't the best of ideas, but whatever, it delayed his reaction and he jack-knifed in two when I landed a punch in the centre of his stomach, before I kicked him and he collapsed into a groaning, gasping ball on the tiled floor.
"Are you all right?" I asked the kid. Stupid, stupid words. How could he be all right? But I didn't know what else to say. I didn't know whether to touch him, to lead him over to the sink and wash away the blood that was already drying around his nose and upper lip. But there was one thing I did need to do. I pulled out my phone, ready to call the police.
"No. No, don't do that," the kid barked at me as he yanked his jeans up.
"I said no. The police can't be involved."
His voice was shaking, but I heard the determination in them. And the fear. Why—? And then I remembered the older guy whose arm the kid had been draped over, and the men milling around looking like extras in a gangster film. Men who wouldn't appreciate the involvement of the law, even if it were to investigate the attempted rape of one of their own.
"Besides, there's no evidence. Nothing happened, and there’s nobody to take in for questioning. Look around you, they've gone."
I turned around. He was right. I’d been so focused on him that I hadn’t heard the vermin who'd attacked him crawl off, hopefully to die, but I'd not hit either of them hard enough for that.
"Thanks for your help, but I'm okay. I'm just gonna clean up before I go back down." He stared at me, and I had the feeling I was being dismissed. I'd served my purpose, and now I was being given my marching orders. And that pissed me off no end.
"No." I crossed my arms over my chest and met his stare.
He scowled and turned to the sink and grabbed a handful of paper towels, which he soaked and dabbed away the blood with. I stood and watched because I wasn't going to be given my orders by a snotty teen. Whether he liked it or not, I was going downstairs with him and was going to explain what happened to his boyfriend, or whoever the older guy was. At least I'd have done what I could and the rest of it would be out of my hands.
The kid dried his hands and turned back to me. You wouldn't have thought anything had happened. He looked composed and calm, and somehow bland, which was one hell of a trick to pull off for somebody as gorgeous as he was. He narrowed his eyes as we studied each other. He was certainly a lot younger than me, maybe as much as seventeen, eighteen years, but as I looked into a pair of jade coloured eyes, 'kid' no longer seemed right. There was a wariness about him that went way beyond his years.
"So you're not going to go and forget this happened?"
He said the words slowly, as if he were considering the consequences, and my resolve wavered. Maybe he had his reasons for not wanting anything to be said, and I was just going in heavy with my size tens.
"O-kay. Can you just say you saved me from a mugging? Please?"
That didn't seem right, to lie about what had almost happened, it was too serious but I already knew I'd lie for--
"What's your name?"
"Billy. Billy Grace."
Billy Grace. The name taptoed down my spine, and I shivered. I swear I shivered.
A E Ryecart
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