Rating: G to NC-17
Disclaimer: B&S is not mine
Summary: AU – A 36-year old lawyer wants to go home, a 25-year drifter wants to escape his
After a few long days of travel, Scotty can finally see the ocean, which stretches out before him. The sand is still warm, even though the sun is disappearing in the distance. Sitting beside him is Kevin, equally quiet and enjoying the view.
“Now that we’ve reached our destination, what will happen now?” Scotty eventually asks.
Kevin doesn’t reply immediately. He just sighs as if he had been dreading this question.
“I think… I think it’s best if we say our goodbyes here on the beach.” He says slowly as if he really thought it through before answering. Scotty has to swallow hard to get rid of the disappointment he feels.
It is ridiculous to say the least. He has no claim on Kevin. Neither of them has said the words ‘I love you’… There’s no promise of a commitment between them. Never was. Never would be. The rules of their game had been set from the start. No promises, no expectations, no obligations.
So he has no right to feel bad about this, but he does. As if Kevin can guess what’s on his mind he changes position and kneels down in the sand in front of Scotty.
“Scotty, this is not about you. You’re an amazing man. And don’t let anyone ever, and I do mean ever, tell you differently.
You’re smart, you’re kind, you’re beautiful, both inside and out and I’m sure that you will accomplish anything you set your mind to. Yesterday, when we were at the restaurant, you told me that you biggest wish was to go to chef’s school and become the best cook ever, so you can fulfill your dream to have your very own restaurant. Well, ... go for it!
You will succeed at that. I’m sure of it. It will be the best restaurant in town, with the best cook in town, serving the most delicious food anyone could ever taste and you’ll be successful. I’m know you will.”
“I don’t think I could…” Scotty rejects the idea.
“You could. You can. And you will.” Kevin says and he so convinced about the truth of his words, that he almost manages to convince Scotty too. Kevin takes Scotty’s hands and holds them between his own. “It’s just me… I am not in the right place at the moment. I’m not ready for something more.
I’ve discovered that it’s not that I still miss John... I believe that I’m hiding behind his death, so that I don’t have to move on with my life, because, to be honest, I don’t know what I’m supposed to do next. You have plans. Ideas. A goal. A purpose. You know what you want, and you know what you don’t want, and that is what I’m missing.
I don’t regret anything about my life with John, but these last few days with you, made me wonder if I had taken the right decisions in my life…” Kevin looks unhappy.
“I’m sorry, I never meant to make you feel bad.” Scotty apologizes. Kevin smiles gently and caresses Scotty’s cheek.
“You didn’t. It’s not your fault. You were just being you. And, please, don’t change. But hearing you talk about going out, dating around, making mistakes, … having a life…. I never did any of that… I was so deadly shy, that I wouldn’t have known where to begin. As I said before, I hardly any experience at anything until I met John.
I can now see that John took the first step, made all the moves in my direction, and it made me feel so important, that I just let him take charge. I don’t believe that he meant to control me. He never did. I’ve always considered him my guide in life. But I allowed him to run our lives. I felt happy and secure and safe…
What happened between you and me, was not ‘safe’, and definitely out of character for me. These last few days I feel like I’ve been doing things that are ‘not safe’. Leaving everything behind. Start in a new city. Pick up someone I don’t know. Have sex with a stranger… This isn’t me. But I liked that Kevin, I felt alive and I’m not sure…
I’m not sure that I’m ready for ‘safe’ again right now. I’m not sure that I want to play ‘catch-up’ either. I don’t like the idea to have sex left and right with everyone who wants to, but I’m not ready to start a new relationship either. I cannot make promises. I don’t want any obligations. I just want my freedom to go and figure out who I am….”
“I see…. Or at least, I think I do.” Scotty feels better, because he can sense the confusion in Kevin and, logically, he has to agree that maybe Kevin is not in the best emotional place to have a relationship again. “Well, I guess I should be glad that I at least have a bed for tonight...”
He points at the hotel where he and Kevin had just brought Scotty’s bags upstairs. Already a sign that Kevin hadn’t planned to join him there for the night. Kevin fidgets with his car-keys, torn once again between wondering if he’s doing the right thing and feeling that he does.
“You can stay there for a week. I’ve paid for everything... Take that time to look around and find a place for yourself. I don’t want you to have to settle for the first thing that comes along. I would feel as if I left you here in the middle of the road and just drove off.” Kevin tells an astounded Scotty
“You didn’t have to…” He stammers. He would have been happy with one night. A whole week sounds like overkill.
“I know. No obligations between us, but … I somehow feel responsible for you and just leaving you here, to take care of yourself, and just walk away isn’t my thing.
So, two night ago, when you were sleeping, I got my laptop and got online. With a network as large as that of my family, I quickly got some answers…” He hands Scotty a piece of paper. “This is the address of a good second hand car dealer. He’s a friend of my brother Tommy. Just mention Tommy Walker, if you’re interested in buying a car there.
You’ll need a job. I had no idea what your work-background was, but I know that you can wait tables, so I asked my mom and she says that this restaurant…” Another piece of paper. “… would hire you. Again friends of the family, gotta love those…” Scotty notices the name Nora Walker written down in the corner.
“That’s your mother’s name?” He asks
“Yes. The owner of the restaurant is named Charlotte. She and mom go back to high-school, so please, if you want to work there, don’t embarrass my mom.” Kevin begs sweetly.
“Thank you for this….” Scotty is flabbergasted. He had been worried about what to do once he got to Los Angeles, so this takes at least a few worries off his mind.
“And I want you to have this…” Kevin gives Scotty a package. Something they had picked up while passing through Pasadena. “I had my mother get this for me.”
Scotty is about to open it, but Kevin stops him.
“No. Do that in your hotel. That would be safer….” He gets up and brushes the sand off his legs. “I have to go. My parents are expecting me.” Scotty gets up as well. “I think… a quick and clean walk away would be best….”
“If that is what you want….” Scotty replies. When he looks at Kevin he sees the same insecurity that he feels himself. Kevin nods bravely though.
“Yes. I ….” Kevin doesn’t know what to say. Instead he wraps his arms around Scotty for one last kiss. It is a kiss that seems as desperate to Scotty as it does to Kevin.
“We could always…” Scotty looks over his shoulder at his hotel. Kevin shakes his head.
“No, we can’t.” He gently pushes Scotty away. “I have to go.”
“Okay…” Scotty says hesitantly. Kevin turns around and walks away, he keeps his eyes on his feet and he keeps telling himself to not look around.
Scotty watches him walk away. Something in him screams out to Kevin to turn around and come back, but after a few seconds of paralysis, he realizes that Kevin has made up his mind and that he won’t be coming back. It nearly takes all his strength, but eventually he manages to turn around and walk away as well.
Kevin stops. Is he crazy? Scotty is a great guy. Go back. He turns around to go back to Scotty, only to see Scotty walk away with a strong pace. Seems like Scotty made up his mind to put as much distance between them as quickly as he can. Kevin feels disappointed. Scotty doesn’t even look back. Not once. So, Kevin turns around again and continues to walk to his car.
Scotty is out of breath, he feels like his lungs are ready to collapse and that is when he stops. He turns around to search for Kevin. He sees Kevin’s car and Kevin who just reaches it. It hurts, but he reasons that if Kevin doesn’t even bother to have a second thought about this, why should he? He crosses the street to his hotel.
In his car, Kevin no longer bothers to hide his pain. He keeps telling himself that this is the best choice, that this is the right thing to do. They had agreed to ‘no obligations’ and he had already done more for Scotty than he had planned to or would be morally required to do. It would have to be sufficient then. He turns on his engine.
Scotty is glad to be in his room and that he’s able to finally drop the mask he’s been wearing. The room is drop-dead beautiful and spacious and definitely not cheap, Scotty had to acknowledge that fact, and he’s grateful that Kevin had done this for him, but he would prefer to have Kevin in this room with him. Preferably in that bed. Naked.
The view of the ocean from the 8th floor is fabulous and Scotty is glad to feel the soft sea-breeze on his skin. Sea, sand, an amazing view, and the lights of the city beneath him. What more could anyone ask for? He returns to his bed, finally having the courage to unpack Kevin’s gift.
It feels solid and Scotty wonders if it is a cook-book, but the gift-paper reveal a box instead. He opens the box and closes it immediately. No way! He opens the box again, his jaw drops. There’s money in the box. Lots of money. And a little letter, written in Kevin’s beautiful hand-writing.
“Dear Scotty, I searched the net to find a school for you. A quick call made me see how expensive the training would be. I know it would take you a long time to gather that kind of money, if you’d work as a waiter, and so I thought I’d help you. I think you’re amazing and I’m so grateful to have met you. You’ve changed my life and how I view myself.
I hope you will take this opportunity to go for your goals in life. I have faith in you and your ability to become an excellent chef-cook. I hope that one day I will be able to have a meal in your restaurant. I believe that you can have the future you dream of. As I have no idea where I will be staying, I’m giving you my telephone-number at work. Sincerely yours, Kevin.”
A FEW DAYS LATER
“Carter, Wright and Duprée, how may I help you?” The receptionist asks with a gentle voice. “Who?... Kevin Walker?... I’m sorry, there’s no one working here by that name?... Yes, I’m sure… That’s alright…. Goodbye..” She switches off and looks at her colleague who seems a little upset.
“What’s wrong?” She asks.
“I’m sorry, but … there’s a new guy… started working here yesterday… His name is Kevin Walker. He got hired, while you were on holidays…”
“Oh. You should have told me sooner… Well, if it’s important he’ll call back.” And she picks up another incoming call.
“Hello? Yes…. My name is Scotty Wandell.. I’m in room 815… I think I may have made a mistake in my booking of this room… Is it paid for until the 20th or the 21st?... The 21st? … Oh, alright…. No, it’s fine. It should be the 21st, but I was afraid that I may have given you the 20th as departure date. I’m glad that you wanted to check it out. Thank you.”
Scotty puts down his phone. He had wanted to at least tell Kevin about his last a few days. Charlotte is a kind woman, with a beautiful restaurant. She had welcomed him with open arms. She is very strict, but Scotty likes that. The pay is good and she told him about an apartment building, not far from the restaurant, where some of other waiters live as well.
The apartment he can rent isn’t big, but it’s not expensive either. And he had been lucky at the address of the car-sale as well. The man had offered him a reduction because he was ‘a friend of Tommy’. Scotty hadn’t corrected the man’s assumption, hoping that Kevin and this Tommy wouldn’t get in trouble.
So, within a few days he had found a place to stay, a job and a car. He had felt like a million bucks and he had wanted to share that with Kevin, and say thank you for the money, but that he wanted to give it back, because it felt wrong to accept Kevin’s money after everything he had done for Scotty already.…
But now that the telephone number turns out to be fake, it feels like he got this face slapped. He could understand that Kevin needed his freedom, that he wasn’t ready for anything new, but to give a wrong telephone number…? That is low. Does this mean that Kevin doesn’t want any contact with him whatsoever?
He had hoped that they could at least stay in touch. If not as a lovers or maybe not even as friends, at least as acquaintances? Had he just given Scotty so much help to get rid of him? It made no sense. Kevin hadn’t asked him for his phone-number, he had only given his own, which now turns out to be a fake…
Is he being ‘paid off’? Thanks for the sex, now get lost? Scotty reads once again the letter that is attached the bundle of money in the small package. ‘I think you’re amazing’ …. ‘I have faith in you’… ‘I believe that you can have the future you dream of’… Not exactly the words of a man who wants to get rid of someone else.
They feel like a desire for a continued relationship, in one form or another… But maybe that was just his own wish… He lets himself fall backwards on the bed and he stares at the ceiling. If he closes his eyes, he can still picture Kevin’s face in his mind. Those little curls, those beautiful blue eyes, that wonderful laughter…
He remembers the way Kevin’s fingers had caressed him, trying to figure out what Scotty liked and what he didn’t like, not that there was much that Kevin had done that Scotty hadn’t liked. How could that same man who had held his hands and so seemingly honest had told him that he wasn’t ready, no matter how amazing Scotty was, be the same man to give a fake telephone-number?
He turns to his belly and stares at the piece of paper. Should he try again? Should he give up? Should he continue to work for Charlotte? Should he ask her if she knew where Kevin was? But what if Kevin was indeed not interested in continuing this whatever-they-had? Would it not be better to simply cut the strings as well?
He looks at the money. And the note to it. And the application-form to the school. “I would feel as if I left you here in the middle of the road and just drove off.” No, Kevin hadn’t done that. He had given Scotty options for a job and a car, opportunities to get a place of his own and financially able to start fulfilling his dream.
Kevin had felt that he had left everything to John. Maybe that is what Kevin had tried to avoid with Scotty. He had just made sure that Scotty would get the tools he needed and now he had to build a life on his own, not ‘safely’ as Kevin had, by letting his partner take control, but with hard work.
Scotty isn’t afraid of hard work. In a way, Kevin had been right. He has a dream, he has an idea of how to accomplish it and he has the drive to make it come true. What was missing had been the tools and now he’s been handed those as well. Scotty sits up and straightens his back.
He will take the money and carry out his plans. And then he will save all his money, until he can pay Kevin back. And only then will he search for Kevin, pay him back, so that he will be able to stand in front of Kevin, equally successful and capable to provide for himself. Yes. That is what he will do.
“I still think he could have at least call Kevin.” William Walker says.
“I agree. But Kevin said he wanted a clean break. And we know from Charlotte that he took the job that Kevin suggested.” Nora Walker defends the young man she doesn't even know.
“Yes, and we know from Bob that he has a car.” Tommy Walker adds.
“I still think it was wise of Kevin to not give his cell-phone number, as we suggested. This Scotty could have been some stalker that Kevin would never get rid of.” Sarah Whedon now feels she needs to say.
“I think you should go to the hotel while he’s still there and ask him what the fuck is going on.”
“Justin! Language!” Nora reminds her youngest.
“Like he never heard the word ‘hotel’ before.” Justin mumbles unafraid of his mother. He sees a little grin come to Kevin’s face.
“Justin, you know very well that mom meant the word ‘fuck’.” Kitty sharply says.
“Kitty…!” Nora sighs annoyed and the whispered ‘gotya’ from Justin, makes both Kevin and Justin giggle, Kevin first. Oh, those two! Still little children sometimes, Nora supposes, unaware that Justin is simply grateful for the little smile on Kevin’s face. Kevin is his favorite sibling and he can’t stand to see Kevin hurt.
“Listen, bro, I’m going back to Iraq by the end of the week. You’re welcome to stay in my apartment until my return. It’s nothing fancy. It’s a bit small, compared to what you and John had, but, it will give you some privacy.”
“Kevin can stay here with us. He shouldn’t be alone.” Nora shakes her head.
“Don’t listen to them. Julia would love it if you’d stay with us.” Tommy now interferes, but that’s too much to for Sarah.
“You wouldn’t want that. With Gabe off to university, we have an extra room. I’m sure that Cooper and Paige would love to see you more often.”
“And if you ever get really sick and tired of all of them, you can always escape to my couch.” Kitty says with a large smile and Kevin laughs as well. It’s so good to be back home.
“I think, I’d rather take Justin’s offer.” Kevin says apologetically.
“Thanks, Kevin, for driving me to the airport.” Justin sighs. “The last thing I needed was mom standing here, crying her eyes out.”
“What makes you think I’ll be different?” Kevin jokes. Both he and Justin know how worried Kevin really is, but how he will not show it.
“Listen, bro. You told me about your plans. Other guys and all. Ahm… it’s none of my business, but … if you do plan to screw around, just… do it safely.”
“I will. I promise.”
“Got to go.”
“I know… Be safe.”
“I love you, little brother…”
“You’re so gay sometimes…. Love you too.”
A final hug, a final wave, and then Justin is through the gates and Kevin watches him disappear in the crowd. He holds the keys to Justin’s apartment firmly in his hand. He’s on his own. He’s alone. With more freedom than he needs to have. He’s scared to death, but also excited to find out who he really is.
END OF CHAPTER FOUR
Chapter 5 will only be up tomorrow-night, so this is what you'll have to do with, for now. :)