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Remembering Ryan

by Rafael Henry

Chapter 5

Tubby Potts stopped me as we came out of Chapel. Ryan had been released from his shackles two days ago, and for him, things had returned to more or less normal.

'Had a letter from Ryan's people Simon. Very grateful for what you've done for the boy. Would like to see you at the end of term by all accounts. No doubt want to thank you. Got a note from for you. Keep it. Yours.'

It always amuses me, Tubby's manner of clipping his little speeches. He's ex-army which might account for it, and very posh. Goodness knows what he's doing here in this Temple of Testosterone. You can smell it everywhere, along with the scent of overcooked cabbage. At night in the more senior dormitories, so I've heard, you can hear a boy when he reaches his climax, as he emits a final gasp of satisfaction. I like the idea of that; the physical expression of profound pleasure. It might be the boy going solo, or a friend making him come. What are friends for? Or not unusually, the boy has made a friend of a more junior boy who has willingly offered his services to the attractive senior. I think that's very much part of making boy-love as David and I do, when we get the chance, which is not often. Complementary sounds. Then you know you're doing it right for the person you desperately want to please, and be happy to be with. We were thirteen, just over in fact, when we first did it.

Ryan cried out. It wasn't me that did it for him. Let's get that clear. He did it himself with a little help from me. And was he pleased with himself? Oh yes. And I was pleased for him, that all-important first time after his partial incarceration. I suppose his body had been saving it all up, and decided that tonight's the night to make that giant leap forward. He didn't see it but I certainly did. He'd taken his hand away a few seconds before it hit him, literally, quite unable to function any more. The whole thing was out of his control now. I felt it all, being where I was, the sudden and rapid contractions gripping me, or that little part of me that was helping matters along. I saw it in the half-light, a tiny fleeting reflection of silvery light, arcing and falling onto warm flesh. He must have felt it flow through him because he put his hand there almost instantly. Fingers spread over his tummy, moving this way and that as if to make certain. It's true Ryan. It's now a fact of your life. Bloody marvellous!

He was asleep less than five minutes later, turned on his side, all foetal under the covers. I'll wake him early tomorrow. He'll want to talk I'm sure.

He's pink cheeked and smily this morning. He took some waking up too. You might imagine his first thoughts as the memory re-formed in his consciousness.

'Did you see it? Was it……normal? How much was there?'

And so on. Yes Ryan, completely normal. Well done. But there's no time for that this morning. Time to get dressed.

He's been thinking about last night as he places his hands on my shoulders so I can fit him into his primary clothing. He fits in nicely, a hot and lively compact and restricted four inches of protuberance looking like it's desperate to get out. There's no finer sight. By the time we're on the stairs the memory, and it , will have faded; probably. The back of my hand brushes past, quite by accident, of course.

I opened the envelope; a buff coloured one. It looked like a woman's handwriting; Ryan's mother no doubt.

Dear Simon,

Just a note to thank you for all you've done for our Ryan this past month. He is so grateful, as indeed we are too for the marvellous care and attention you've given our son. We were wondering how we might thank you properly. Are you free at all this holiday?

The letter went on. Two holidays indeed! Wales and Norfolk. I had to smile, and a cottage on the Norfolk coast sounded rather nice, albeit a chilly experience if our one holiday on that bleak coast was anything like the August norm. It was the only time I ever heard my father utter the 'F' word, as he commented on the Siberian wind blowing that morning. Apparently lots of strange things are 'normal for Norfolk' including Overstrand. There were compensations however, as I was allowed to take a friend with me; David. It was there up in our room one afternoon that we finally made it. David's elder brother Hugh had introduced me to the possibilities elsewhere, months before, and when I broached the subject with David on a windy walk on Overstrand beach one morning, we thought we'd have a go. The following afternoon with the rain hitting our bedroom window that faces east, we put the plan into action. Neither of us were anywhere near full grown so it was relatively easy-peasy. David went first and kept his up, or rather in, for five minutes before his bell rang, joyfully and noisily too. Then it was my turn. His shenanigans had brought something out of me already so it wasn't likely to a long time a'comin. It wasn't. Quite randomly Hugh asked me if we had tried the trick and I said we had.

'And?' Hugh asks.

'Bingo.' I replied with a smile.

He smiled.

'Huh. You two. You'd make a lovely queer couple. You really would.'

That said, he marched off. I'm not at all sure about David, but he's very right about me. I imagine that plenty of boys have played that quite advanced game for thirteen-year-olds and matured into straightish guys with 2.4 kids in tow.

I was right about David. He's started to talk about girls and quite pointedly ignoring my hints. Playing those sort of games with a boy is no longer appealing it would appear. But with no immediate prospect of playing with a girl, I still have my uses. It was my idea.

'I could make myself girly David? Would that help?'


'How do you think?'

'What? Dress up as a girl?'

'You've got a sister haven't you?'

'Oh shit. Would you?'

I certainly would if it means our games might continue for a while longer.


I have to say I did enjoy it while it lasted. The play acting up in his room. Being undressed by him, slowly, down to my pink knickers. And then the love making, this way and that. It worked. That's all that mattered. I still had him, until I hadn't. Inevitably David got his girl, one and then another, and although we remained good friends during the next three years, life was different. For me there were books, endless revision for exams, lines to learn for productions, unsuccessful attempts at learning an instrument and lonely nights of self-abuse; and the gradual appearance of body hair where I didn't want it.

The one constant was my annual invitation to stay with David and his parents for a fortnight in the long summer holiday; eight weeks of it. David's increasing interest in girls made no difference to our friendship [in most ways], so I was still a welcome visitor. They always hired the same cottage in Cornwall up the hill behind the small town of Padstow; a minor fishing and recreational port on the north coast famous for the folk that go 'ossin' on May Day. The local beaches were west of the town best reached by bus; Porthcothan and Treyarnon, both family beaches of considerable beauty in my view, and a wonderful place to observe August boys in tiny swimming kit digging holes, damming up the stream of fresh water that ran down the centre of the beach, running hither and thither, and jumping from rocky places into deep pools, all set against a backdrop of azure coloured sea topped with white horses. It was as idyllic as it sounds.

I had just celebrated my fifteenth birthday at home and two days before I was to join David's family in Clifton, one of the posher parts of Bristol, for the drive down to Padstow. David's elder brother Hugh, who had been considerate towards me in the past, was abroad somewhere as part of his university course. David's father, Lucien, drove us two boys and mum Sara. The only fly in the ointment was the David's medical appointment back in Bristol ten days into the holiday. Sara would drive him back, and they'd be away for three days. I wasn't warned beforehand about this situation. So two days into my stay I was given the choice of either going back to Bristol with David, or staying in Cornwall with Lucien. I chose the latter. I had a feeling that Lucien would like it if I chose to stay with him. When the question was popped, Lucien was there, rather staring at me, waiting for my response. When my eyes met his, they had an intensity about them which affected me rather. I wasn't sure exactly how. When I answered their question, Lucien looked relieved and obviously pleased. He had always enjoyed our company on the beach, taking great pleasure in swimming and playing with us and joining in with our games, often quite rough ones. One game he particularly like us to indulge in, with him. We took turns to jump off a rock, and he would catch us. Although slightly scary, it was excellent fun and I enjoyed being caught and held for some seconds afterwards; with Lucien's hands around my back. I thought nothing of it at the time, but later I realised that he had taken, with his hands where they were, a liberty with me. In order to support my weight and to prevent my body slipping down the front of his, his hands held me under my buttocks. One hand firmly under each one with the tips of his fingers in between. I noticed, and liked the sensation of feeling his fingers there, but thought no more about it.

Then one evening David and I were out walking, and the conversation got around to our beach games with Lucien. There was a bit of a lull for a few moments.

'I'm afraid Dad likes those games Simon.'

It was the way he said it.

'Mum doesn't approve. Do you mind?'

I hesitated before I answered.

'No, not at all. I hadn't noticed.'

You mean there was something to notice?

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