CHAPTER FOUR

DECISIONS AND CHOICES

MICHAEL TURNER AND PATRICK CORNER - NEW YORK CITY - November 2012

Michael was on the plane, nervous, wondering what he was about to find. Just earlier that morning Mike and
Pat were arguing over what to do with his uncle’s Oldsmobile which had been sitting in the garage for
years. They discovered that Mike’s uncle had left them an old building he had rented out when he left New
York in late 1990s. Mike wasn’t aware of Connor’s life in New York so learning Uncle Connor had a building
there was shocking to say the least.

Now he was exiting JFK with his partner of many years. They were on their way to explore the building.
Patrick had spent the quick flight researching the history of the building. He learned that it opened in
1932 and that in 1949 a fire had all-but demolished it. It was later converted into a hotel under new
management. The research never indicated who ran the building. Mike assumed his uncle wanted to be low key
since from the little he knew Connor was not one to want a public spectacle.

Entering the cab, Mike looked at the city through the window with wonder. He had never been to that city
before and he was taking it all on it. Pat on the other was more curious about the building. He couldn’t
put his mind on what made him so interested with it. Maybe he and Mike could use the building, or secretly
he wondered if they could sell it and retire with a small fortune. However that dream was put aside when
the cab pulled up to the curb in front of the Orpheus Hotel.

The outside was covered with graffiti and the front doors were boarded shut. There were many broken
windows. “What the hell happened?” Pat wondered out loud.

“I don’t know. Let’s try to find a way in.” Michael encouraged. This surprised Pat as he had been the one
to talk Mike in to coming here.

They walked around the building, which was a daunting feat as it took up an amazing amount of space. There
was a side door they located eventually. Looking at each other, Mike gulped and Pat reassured him with a
pat on the shoulder as they ventured into the building.

The smell was old and dusty, but the first thing they saw was a bank of elevators to their left. They
appeared to be functioning. “Should we check the floors?” Mike asked, almost silently.

“No, let’s look around here first.” Pat said confidently, staring down the length of the room. He looked at
the front doors that were still boarded shut. He walked past the desk that seen better days and found
himself staring at an empty corner. “I wonder what used to be here.”

Mike stood with his partner and shook is head, taking in the sight. There were turned over tables and
chairs. There was a display case that had some broken glass in it. “I guess it’s some kind of restaurant.”

“Let’s check out the other floors and see if they’re usable?”

Michael was piped, “For what?” Patrick just smiled mischievously and led him to the first elevator. Mike
put out his hand, “Maybe we should check the stairs first, just to be safe.”

Pat nodded and they made their way to staircase just the right of the elevators. The stairs were in an okay
condition. Pat assumed they weren’t used as much.

The first floor had five doors, which Pat assumed were connected to their own rooms. They went to the first
one. It was understandingly locked. Mike kicked it down, nearly falling over in the process.

“Honey, you’re not that young anymore.”

However, Mike was transfixed with the room. There in front of his was a living room from the fifties or
sixties. It looked brand new almost. Pat noticed the leather was worn but in the center of the living area
was classic 1950s television. Then behind that there was small kitchen and bar. Although the room seen
better days it seemed to be in an acceptable condition. “Let’s check the bedroom.”

“We didn’t come here for a quick fuck, love,” Pat smiled.

“True.” Mike said as he led them to a room that had a king size bed in it with two chairs, one of which was
a rocking chair. Satisfied, they went to check the other rooms on the floor. They all had a 50s air about
them with fixtures and furnishings from that era and although they were not as pristine as they could be
they seemed to work.

Patrick suggested they go to the next floors and Michael seeming to understand what he was thinking and
agreed. The second floor offered more glamorous pieces than the first floor offered.

“I’m impressed. How can the lobby be so run down when the rooms are still functional?”

“Why does it matter?” Mike snapped back, catching Pat off guard.

“What’s wrong?”

“I mean why does it matter? I know what you want to do but we can’t do it.”

Pat stared at his lover, putting his hands on his hips, “And pray tell, what was I going to suggest?”

“You want to renovate this place.”

“Yes, I think we can. Not as a hotel but as an apartment complex, bring it back to its’ origins. I’m sure
that’s why your uncle gave you this building when he died.”

“No, he gave me a piece of junk, that’s what he always gives me.” Mike stated, sitting on the bed in one of
the rooms.

Pat sat next to his lover and smiled, “You know that’s not true.”

“The car, this building… What more evidence do you want?”

“He gave them to you so you could make them better, ever since you were younger you had the gift of
repairing things. You made gold out of straw.”

“Maybe,” Mike begrudgingly acknowledged.

“Come on, Mike. HE was your best friend. You guys talked so much when you were younger. He gave you that
fishing rod you gave me at the wedding. That was his most prized possession.”

“Then why did he keep his New York lifestyle a secret? Why didn’t he come to our wedding? Why did our
relationship drift away in his later years? Why?”

“I don’t know. We may never know. We all have our secrets.” He got up and pulled Mike up with him, “We’ve
got to do this. We can make this work.”

“You want to move to New York and open this place up, really?”

“It would be a nice project.”

“I don’t know.” He admitted to Pat as they walked down the hall toward the elevators. They pressed the
button. Mike thought it might be possible to do it. It could be his retirement. The third elevator in the
row opened up. Pat checked it out and deemed it safe. He pressed the L for lobby. The doors closed and they
made it to bottom floor, not the lobby but the basement.

As the doors swung open the pair exited the lift and entered the darkened space. There was a noise and a
lamp turned on. They found themselves staring into the face of someone they didn’t know.


***


DALLAS, TEXAS - COACH HARRY WADE - January 2013

He opened the door to his office when his cell rang and he got a call from Bianca. He was surprised to hear
from her. He sat down on his chair eyeing the envelope he was looking at earlier. Bianca was his girlfriend
of many years. They had been living together for as long as he could remember. They had loved each other
from the day they met in high school.

Bianca was an anchor now and had been given that anchor spot two summers ago. She had fallen in love with
the position as much as she had fallen in love with Harry. She was scheduled to take on the afternoon live
spot today, which was why Harry was surprised to hear from her.

“Honey,”

“I just wanted to know if you’re free for dinner tonight.” Coach Harry had planned to go bowling with his
friends and she knew that.

“Of course, my love, bowling can wait ‘til another time.”

“I forgot. I just have some news I wanted to celebrate.”

“Well then we’ll go.” Harry knew nine times out of ten when they celebrated he had the most amazing sex
that night, but Harry and Bianca had not had sex in months. She knew that would be his response.

“Yeah, honey, we haven’t had sex lately. I am sorry about that. Tonight we will for sure.”

“YES!” Harry yelled a little too loudly. “What are we celebrating…?”

“I’ll tell you tonight. I love you.” She hung up.

Harry wondered what the announcement was, knowing Bianca it was either she was pregnant and or she got a
promotion. They had been trying for a kid for a while, however, lately they had been discouraged, and that
was why their sex life had suffered.

The envelope that was still waiting on his desk caught his eye again and he picked it up. Hoping no further
interruptions would cause him from reading this letter, he opened it just as a knock on the door, causing
him to groan.

“Come in,” he said and in waked his best friend and principal, Otis Arkin.

“Mr Arkin,” Harry stated, “Please come in.”

“Sit down Har. This is a social call.” Harry relaxed.

“Well bowling tonight is cancelled I’m afraid. Bianca has some celebrating to do.”

“We both know what that means,” Otis winked. Although Otis had been principal for about two years he was
only three years Harry’s senior and a certified genius, skipping most of high school altogether. But Harry
and Otis were neighbours since Harry was seven and they grew up together sharing everything.

“Yeah, I so I can’t wait for today to be over.” He had another class real soon before he called it a day.

“Well, I’ll be quick. The envelope is for you. I placed it on your desk this morning. I know you’d want to
see it,”

“It’s not a special VIP invite again, is it? After last March break I can’t handle another of those trips.”

Otis remembered the Florida trip. It was one of many they had taken since Harry entered College his
freshman year. Harry and Otis had explored their sexuality numerous times over the years. Although Harry
and Bianca were in love Harry was a bonafide bisexual. The trips to Florida allowed them to expand their
experiences, their last trip was all about gay indulgences. Otis had shown him to VIP club he had learned
about. There, Otis and Harry had some of the most amazing orgies and it totally spent Harry so much that he
couldn’t walk for days.

Bianca was aware of these trips and experiences. She knew that he loved her more than anything those sexual
experiences could give him. Her being a bisexual too made it possible for her to accept this nature of her
husband-to-be.

“No, don’t worry. After our last trip to Florida, even I needed a break to get my stamina in fighting
shape.”

“What you need is a man in your life. You’ve been a bachelor for way too long. I thought the assistant
principal and you were going to try dating.”

“We did last weekend, but Aaron and I couldn’t find much common ground. I would have told you but you had
other pressing matters to attend too.”

Harry looked ashamed. He had always strived to get his teaching lessons and grades in order and last
weekend was about getting the latest English assignment completed. “I would have been there for you, Otis.”

“Don’t worry about it, back to the point at hand, read the letter.”

Eying his friend suspiciously, he took the letter out of the envelope and read the first line.

Mr Harry Wade,

                It is our pleasure to offer you a position within our ranks at the Roosevelt School. We
believe your unique qualities and experience from your years at Dallas Regional High School will add much
to our school.
                We believe you would fit right in our Creative Arts program…

The letter continued to explain the role in which The Roosevelt School Dean had envisioned for him. His
passion was football, however, teaching young minds had always put a soft spot in his heart. He looked to
Otis, his friend, who was positively glowing.

“What the fuck did you do?”

“Harry, we’re in a school, please watch the language. I did nothing. I had a few friends over several
months ago for drinks and one of them was a member of the Roosevelt faculty who was discussing the
retirement of one of their members. Knowing your ability shape minds, not just on football field but in
classroom, and your work as an unpublished writer, you deserve that opportunity.”

Harry was shocked. The Roosevelt School was one of the best Writing Schools in all of America. It had
churned out some of best short story writers, novelists, screenwriters and comedic writers in the country.
Harry had always wanted to go learn from their masters, but to be on their faculty he felt honored.
Although the position was relatively low ranked and he would be given a mentor to help him with the
curriculum formation he was blown away by the offer.

Then he realized the problem. Otis noticed the change in his friend’s face. “What?”

“The Roosevelt School… it’s located in Hyde Park. That’s in New York City. I’d have to move.”

Otis immediately came to the same conclusion and understood the issue. Bianca


***


RON HARRISON and ALTON FENTON - PHILADELPHIA - MARCH 2013

Ron was in a meeting with his boss, Mr Granger, discussing his past poor performance. Mr Granger had to
pull him off the last project. He was stunned. He had never been pulled off an assignment ever. He always
received the highest marks in school, he was considered a genius. And yet, he failed.

“What should I do in the meantime?”

Arnold Granger looked at him. Arnold seemed to be thinking of a response but in reality Ron knew what he
needed to do. He needed to figure out why he lost his passion for his job. He had the job since he left
college. “I know what I need to do.”

“Yeah, I know. Ron we are going to let you take a break. Take two weeks off. You have that much vacation
time set up anyways. Go somewhere with your boyfriend. Do something, then come back, refreshed and ready to
work.”

With that, Mr Granger dismissed him and Ron went back to his office thinking about what he should do in
more detail. He needed to talk to Alton, however, he knew he was busy at the restaurant. It would have to
wait. He took the time to check his emails and messages to see if there was anything urgent. Then he
checked internet for some vacation spots.

He found the perfect place, hoping it would be just what he needed to get some perspective. In the meantime
he went for lunch with Jerry and they talked about his boyfriend troubles. He gave him the sagest advice he
could and in the end Jerry wished him well.

Ron walked back to his car and drove to his apartment. He decided to call Alton in what was normally the
slow period for him.

“Hey Lover.” Ron said as way of hello. 

“Hey yourself,” Alton responded with tenderness.

“Can you get away for dinner tonight?”

“Actually, I’m putting Trevor through the hoops so I need to keep an eye on him. We can meet for drinks
after.”

He said goodbye and went to the computer. Ron had kept a living diary ever since he was a little kid. The
document was an event tracker of the key events of his life. For the last few months he had been trying to
turn his life elements into an interesting prose. Alton loved his creativeness, especially in the bedroom.

It was nearing the end of Alton’s shift, so Ron headed to the O’Connell’s, their local bar. They usually
met there for drinks, normally taking a private booth and enjoying themselves. Tonight would be different.

At midnight, Alton entered the bar and grabbed his drink. The bartender told him where Ron was and he
walked over there. When Ron saw his boyfriend the tired eyes told him tonight might not be the best time to
have their conversation.

“Long day, honey?”

“Yeah, Trevor couldn’t do anything right and I had to babysit him the entire night. However, two hours into
the shift he got into a groove and I sat back and watched him work very well.”

“So what’s Trevor like?”

Alton stared at his boyfriend, “He is fucking gorgeous.”

“Naturally,” not rising to the bait, “Are you going to tell me why your boss wanted a new assistant
manager? You’ve been telling me for a while that Nick was going to promote from within and that it would be
you.”

“No,” Alton shook his head, “We’re not going to talk about me right now. I want to discuss your meeting
with Granger.”

Ron held back, “No, we can discuss that tomorrow. I don’t want to stress you out.”

“Well that defiantly isn’t going to happen now. Did he fire you?”

Ron had mentioned his lack of focus to Alton for the last few weeks and that he knew this meeting with
Granger today was coming for some time.

“No, he gave me two weeks paid vacation,” Ron frowned.

“Paid?”

“Yep, he wants me to find my passion again.”

“Ronnie, why couldn’t you focus? You were so good at your job.”

“I don’t know honey.”

“We both know you’re creative as hell. You always add a new twist to our sex life. I’m still trying to
recover from that ice two nights ago.” Ron had taken seven huge ice cubes and stimulated Alton in different
places. It was so hot that it made his dick cum so much that night.

“But, I can’t make marketing plans like I make sex.”

“Sex sells though.” Alton smiled.

“Only to horny guys, like you.”

“How’s the novel coming along?”

At that Ron’s face let up. “It’s going great. I’m writing about my teenage years and how I came out at
Camp. I explained my first lover and how he made me want to explore my sexuality as much as possible.”

Alton nodded, “Go on.”

“Yeah, I was even going to write about my losing to my virginity to Grant.”

‘So let me ask you something, when did you start writing this story?”

“About six months ago?”

“And you started losing your interest in your work projects?”

“I wouldn’t say I’m losing interest…”

“Honey, you haven’t been on top of your game for a long time, not like when you started.”

Ron was tired, “Okay, what’s you point Al?”

“I think you started losing focus on your work when you started planning your novel.”

“It’s just a hobby.” Ron said defensively.

“Are you sure about that? Haven’t you been doing this hobby for a while now?”

“Six months?”

“Since you were in elementary school. You told about the play you wrote for your senior class and then you
had been writing plays for a long time. Admit it. Marketing was never your passion.”

Ronnie thought about it. Alton was right. He had thought about why he chose marketing in college. The
reason was because the work was easy and he would have that degree to fall back on. However it turned out
that not only was he skilled at it, there were areas that he found quite fascinating. By the time he
graduated he had a dream job and he was so focused and passionate about the work.

In time, however, when he was creating a new document for one of his clients, he discovered one of his old
plays he had written in high school, which was his horrible take on a musical. Then every night before he
went to bed he would make it better, scene by scene. Eventually he finished the lengthy piece and posted it
online to mediocre reviews. Alton suggested creating another story about him. That was when he discovered
the journal he had forgotten and started turning that into his masterpiece.

“You’re right, I have been passionate about my writing. I just forgot about it.”

“So what are we going to do about it?”

The response shocked Alton.


THE TRAVELLER - OUTSIDE OF OREGAN - MAY 2013

“Hello.” The traveller was brought back to the present and noticed a car had stopped on the highway and the
driver had opened his window to talk. “Are you alright?” He said.

“Yes,” The Traveller grinned.

“You don’t recognize me?”

He looked at the face again and was shocked.

The man smiled again, “Hello dear brother. It’s been awhile.”

The face on the traveller betrayed no hint of emotion other than shock. He hadn’t seen his two years
younger brother in over five years. “Hello, Thomas.”

He loved his brother, but Thomas being here brought back so much pain it was hard for the Traveller to
think straight. The obvious question came from his lips.

“How did you find me?”

“You mean because you never left any forwarding address or shit like that? Or because you left no note, you
just disappeared in the middle of the night?”

Before he could respond to his brother, Thomas punched him in the face. The impact instantly broke the
Traveller’s nose. The blood poured. To Thomas’s surprise the Traveller didn’t fight back or do anything.
Thomas punched him in kidney and then the ribs for good measure. Thomas was completely and utterly angry.

The traveller knew Thomas had to get out the rage and he deserved all this abuse over the years of neglect
on his part. It was the only thing he needed. Three minutes later Thomas finally stopped punching him. He
sat on the curb and uttered a single word, “Why?”

The Traveller moved to his brother, still bleeding but ignoring it. He sat right beside his Thomas. “It’s a
long story, bro.”

“I deserve to know.”

“You remember that night, like I do. Dad came in and he was obviously drunk. I couldn’t handle that he was
about to attack mom again.”

The Traveller’s parents had always had a rocky relationship since he could remember. His mother was a
strong woman and put up with a lot of abuse, but after Thomas was born things changed and she refused to
see her husband come home drunk.

He looked at Thomas and continued, “I needed to leave because I couldn’t see that again.”

“You honestly believe that I would understand that? You would abandon me and your mother to an abusive man
like our father?”

“Tommy,” The Traveller stated, trying to use his childhood nickname, “I love you and left you a note
explaining everything.”

“You didn’t leave shit. I woke up the next morning and Dad was on the couch asleep and you were gone. Now,
after a turned sixteen, I left Dad too. I needed answers. I used some friends and located you. It took
seven months, but now I’m here. And I want the truth. NOW!”

“Bro, I left you because I needed to escape our father. That is the truth.”

“Perhaps, but why did you abandon me after all we been through? We shared lives, rooms, fuck you told me
you were fucking gay.”

“Tommy, listen.” The Traveller waited, collecting his thoughts. Although it was true he couldn’t bare
seeing his father abuse his mother anymore, that was the not the reason.

“Bro,” he began again. “I love you and I wish that note was there. It explained that I needed to leave
because of our father, but more importantly it was because I needed to find myself. I needed to make an
impact on this world. I couldn’t do that under Dad’s thumb. I needed to see the world.”

“You fucking asshole.” Thomas replied without thinking, “You call yourself a brother? Why couldn’t you take
me with you? I was left alone without you dealing with Dad and his outbursts.”

“This was something I needed to do. And I know you were able to handle him and you would have protected
mom. I’m sorry I left you. I’m sorry I haven’t come back.”  The Traveller spoke the truth. “This was about
my selfish behaviour, nothing more, nothing less. If didn’t leave when I did I would never have been able
to leave. Leaving you alone was the most gut-wrenching choice I made in years. For that I am sorry and I
know you won’t be able to forgive me”.

What blew Thomas away wasn’t the words his brother spoke, it was the emotion behind it that made him
realize how much his brother missed him. He couldn’t put into words how much he wanted to hate his brother
but the thing was he loved him more.

Thomas got up and hugged his brother. “I missed you, B. You know it will take time, but I can forgive you.
You loved me those six years and it was that love that got me through it. Mom and Dad divorced and when I
was asked who I wanted to be with I told them you. That night I packed up and left them to their own misery
while I started my journey to find you.

“I missed you too, brother.” That’s all he could respond, his tears were escaping his eyes at speeds he
couldn’t believe.

“Can I stay with you?” Tommy asked. The Traveller thought about it.


***


FRANKLIN BARONE and CALVIN HOBERSTER - NEW YORK CITY - August 2013


Cal kissed his friend back and locked the bedroom door. Frankie then grabbed the blindfold and put it on
Cal. Before he knew it Cal was down to his boxers on the bed as Frankie licked his entire body, “Enter me
please.”

Just as he was about to put his cock in him there was a knock on the door. The knock continued and then
became a banging before they knew it.

“Guys, open the door. I don’t have the patience for you,” The voice announced. Calvin and Frankie were
shocked that this person was aware they were inside.

“Who the fuck is it?” Frank asked rudely.

“The guy who is going rip you to pieces if you don’t open up.”

Calvin opened the door. It was a man with incredible abs, long blond hair and blue eyes. He couldn’t be
more than 23 or 24. Instantly Frankie knew who the guy was and without thinking it through his mouth
opened.

“Kris?”

“How the fuck did you know my name?”

Thinking fast, Calvin answered for his friend, “It’s written on your name tag”. The name was spelled Chris,
not Kris. Chris was the maintenance man or janitor by the coveralls he was wearing.

“You guys must be Calvin and Frankie, the potential tenants here at the Orpheus.”

That comment surprised the friends again, “How do you know that?”

“Remember the old man upstairs who checked you for clearance on the fourth floor? Well, as you guys seemed
to be in a hurry you decided not to listen to his comment that the third elevator was closed for repair.”

Frankie never heard the warning, unfortunately. “I’m sorry.”

Calvin was more curious about the setting, “Where are we?”

“You are trespassing on an old tenant’s building. However, now it is just storage.”

Calvin needed more information, “What was the old tenant doing here?”

“I couldn’t tell you, when I started working here I was asked to make sure this place stays clean,
otherwise everyone is to stay away from it. If I had to guess, the guy was a partier and hosted lavish
swinging parties.”

“Swinging?” Calvin asked. Frankie hit him on the side of the head for his stupidity.

“Back in the 70s there were people who went home with different partners than the ones they arrived with.
These parties were ice breakers to decide which person would be agreeable to you. However, I assume these
rooms were used for the acts of themselves.”

“Quite possible,” Chris agreed, as he came to that conclusion many months ago. “Anyway guys, although you
were the first people to come down here to try out the furnishings I must ask you to come with me.”

Calvin and Frankie followed Chris down the hall to the elevators. “How come this elevator is broken?”

“It works well, the issue is this elevator only goes down here and to the lobby. And since the management
doesn’t want to advertise this apartment they tell people to use the other elevators. For the life of me
they cannot fix the problem.

“I see,” Calvin admitted, unable to take his eyes of Chris. “Do you by any chance know a guy named Matt?”

“Matt? No, why?”

“Just curious.”

Chris smiled knowingly, but didn’t elaborate. They exited the elevator to the lobby and he directed them to
the right lift. “I hope you guys stay with us here. You seem like interesting dudes.”

“Thanks,” Frankie blushed. Frankie was well aware what Chris was implying.

As Frankie and Calvin entered the elevator to examine the apartments Chris moved to his office just beside
the front desk. The name on the door read, “Chris Stanford, superintendent.”

Chris knew about the Rooming story and knew the author had used his build to create his character of Kris
Stanton. He was pleased with his characteristics of the complex character the author made. However, there
were many differences. For one, he never went to college, and two, he was 100 percent gay.

The owners picked him to run the place because he had some skills and was an excellent jack of all trades
in the maintenance field, learning everything from his father. He also had used the forbidden elevator
numerous times to bring his friends in. The owners never minded that perk of the job.

He had some plans for the new tenants. They seemed like interesting guys he would like to know better.

Meanwhile, Calvin and Frankie were discussing Chris and his uncanny resemblance to Kris Stanton. “My god,
he was hot.”

“How can he exist? He is a fucking character from a story.”

“I don’t care where he’s from,” Calvin responded, “I want to fuck him.”

“You want to fuck any guy.”

“Not true.”

Calvin then did something he knew he had to do. He kissed his best friend on the lips, the passion behind
it was surprising to Frankie but he let it happen. They weren’t kisses like they had before, this was so
much more.

Frankie stopped the kiss and Calvin stated, “I have something I need to tell you.”

TO BE CONTINUED...

I hope you have enjoyed this series of original work by Andy.  

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