There were tears as Rome approached. Waldi wanted me to accompany him onwards to Naples. Of course, I was committed to keeping Uncle Felix company, and to exploring Rome. I might never get another chance.
We kissed goodbye, exchanged home addresses, kissed again, and then we rolled slowly into the station. At the last moment I remembered to leave a generous tip for the steward… under the still impeccably un-creased pillow of the upper bunk… how he would smile, I thought.
One last hug and I was gone. I waved to Waldi through the window as we stood on the platform. There were tears on his face. Uncle hugged me.
"You will see him soon enough." He said.
I sniffed, there were so many things we hadn't had time to do… Now I would have to wait until… How long could that be? He was only in Naples after all.
I don't think that I was very good company for a few weeks. We were in Rome for a month, so it must have been quite trying for Uncle Felix. He was very kind… he knew what I had lost
To distract me, and so that I could distract myself, Uncle bought me a guidebook. It was in Italian, but for the first (and last time) all those years studying Latin came in useful. I visited the Coliseum and the Forum, and all the obvious places. Then I thought of the Tarpeian Rock, the place where Romans had executed their traitors.
As boys my age would, I thought it interesting to go to stand where they had, just before they… Well anyway, it was interesting and good exercise too. They say Rome is built on seven hills, well I seemed to have found most of them that day. A never ending series of steps; broad shallow ones from the Memorial to Victor Emmanuel, up to the Capitoline Hill and then narrow steeper steps up into Monte Caprino, more of an overgrown park than a hill. I found the Rock and stood there contemplating all the lives that had ended there, and thinking of how I would show the view to Waldi when he made a visit.
Then from behind me I heard a noise. I felt nervous standing on the edge, with unexplained noises to my rear. So I walked back from the edge along a path into the bushes. Behind a juniper bush I found him… straight out of the pages of von Gloeden's photo album. Totally nude, except for sandals, he was dark tanned, had flashing dark eyes and… the largest cock I had ever seen on a boy my own age. I was enthralled… was he my age? Or maybe older but skinny… or maybe just very lucky… or maybe, just maybe… did all Italian boys have big members, the way von Gloeden had portrayed them?
He gestured for me to join him. So I did… Waldi was forgotten for the moment!
When I reached the boy, he seized my hand and drew me to him… then, without the slightest hesitation or embarrassment… he fondled me. I swear I nearly came in my pants when I felt him touch me!. He said something that I didn't quite catch… he tried again, and this time it registered… a number and then "lire"… ahh a price… but for what?
I was shocked when I realised what he was offering… himself!
Does one boy offer himself to another? For money? I didn't hesitate…
The sum of money was trivial.
If that was all that was needed to satisfy my need to visit the lost world of von Gloeden's photographs… I reached into my pocket for the handful of coins that Uncle Felix had given me to buy lunch. I gave him what he asked… he grinned and put it in the pants pocket of the heap of clothes under the bush. Then he drew me to him.
He opened my shirt and lowered my pants and drawers. Suddenly I was just about as naked as he, standing in the dappled sunshine in a Roman park with the boy whose image had seduced me so totally in Papa's library.
He said something… I didn't understand and shrugged in puzzlement… he grinned and made a wanking gesture and then he put two fingers in his mouth and sucked them. He watched for my decision and then seeing me thinking, he made a finger-rubbing gesture with his right hand, the universal gesture for "more money!" and then turned round and offered me his bottom!
I had just been offered the chance to fuck the boy of my dreams for the price of a cup of coffee! I was truly shocked. I knew that such things happened, but not to fourteen year old boys attempting to study Roman history… I didn't hesitate, I did the only thing I could possibly do in the circumstances.
I stuck two fingers in my mouth and sucked on them!
He smiled, drew me to him and with my cheek against his, he kissed my neck while he fondled my cock and balls. He quickly had me to full erection. He seemed to make a decision, and moved his head slightly, looked me in the eyes and then… kissed me.
Thinking back, I suspect that he didn't normally kiss his customers. I think that my blondness was intriguing him as much as his Latin beauty had intrigued me. He just wanted to know what it was like to kiss a pure Nordic blond.
Whatever his thoughts were, I melted on the spot… he tasted of garlic, an Italian thing… but I didn't care. He thrust his tongue through my lips… still I didn't care. Waldi was love, but this was… not love, not even lust… it was beyond all that. I was completely out of control.
I had no thoughts for consequences… would he rob me? Was he healthy? I was completely beyond all thoughts of common-sense, morals or logic. I just needed it… whatever "it" was.
I think that he was simply very, very good at what he did for a living. He knew exactly when to make each move. Why tire his knees or strain his jaw when a few moments more fondling would make me desperate for him to begin. He played me like a musical instrument… note after note… building to a crescendo… Then just as I didn't think it could get any better, he swiftly dropped to his knees and took me into his mouth. It lasted forever, and then for no time at all… and… then it was over. My knees buckled as I emptied my lack of Waldi into his open mouth. He held me round the waist, smiling gently, as if he understood my loss and what he had done to momentarily replace it.
"Grazie, grazie!" I said.
He patted my cheek…"Bitte sehr." He said with an Italian accent.
He hugged me once more, briefly touched my blond hair, stroked my flank… and then it was over. We both suddenly became business-like. I dressed, smiled and departed. I still had enough for a very light lunch. I sat and pondered the difference between my love for Waldi and the overwhelming need that had just caused me to buy the use of the mouth of a boy-prostitute in a Roman garden.
I blamed it all on von Gloeden! I suspected that somewhere von Gloeden would have been smiling… he had achieved exactly what he had set out to achieve.
Actually, I had absolutely no regrets or guilt as I sat there, but I did recognise that I had just learned something terribly important.
If I, at fourteen, could so completely lose all idea of safety, common-sense… even propriety, then how much worse must it be when an adult with greater needs and strength loses control to their need for sex.
I began to understand what drove Herr Rohme and our Jugendfuhrer to risk death or time in the camps, simply to get their hands on us boys. Suddenly I realised how much more dangerous they were than my little-boy perception of their affection for little-Hansi had suggested.
I resolved to be more careful in future. If today's experience was anything to go by… if I too needed it that badly… then I couldn't depend on myself to be sensible.
The world had just become a much scarier place than it had been at breakfast.
Thus we grow up!
I missed Waldi terribly.
The few more experiences I had amongst Rome's ruins didn't diminish his absence. Those encounters were all with schoolboys now. I avoided the obvious professionals… I suspected that their need to sell themselves for money made them dangerous.
I was glad that I had enjoyed my von Gloeden experience amongst the juniper bushes. I wouldn't have missed it for the world. His cock had been so much more interesting than the little boy ones on the schoolboys I encountered in the ruins. Nevertheless, sucking the smaller cock of a schoolboy that I was sure I could out-box in a fight. Well it wasn't as much fun or as exciting, but it felt a great deal safer.
I still wasn't sure that safer was as exciting as a frisson of danger.
I missed Waldi.
The postal system, Italian as it was, worked well. We exchanged letters. They soon became daily and incredibly graphic. We each left off the return address and simply signed off as "Your W" and "Your H". We wrote as if we were a girl… our lover was a boy so it wasn't difficult. A casual reader would not suspect us.
We planned a holiday together. Uncle Felix said he would book a small villa for just Waldi and me, at Borgo Grappa on the Latina coast. He smiled knowingly… perhaps there was more to his choice than I suspected. I didn't care. A week alone with Waldi before returning to Germany!
Our time in Italy was running out. The Fuhrer was angry with Count Ciano, and the Reichsfuhrer-SS was not happy about Uncle's absence… all in all it was high time we returned to Germany. Enemy activity was stepped up in the Mediterranean. The enemy were attacking our convoys and bases within range of North Africa. Later we would realise that it had been in preparation for what they termed Operation Torch, their amphibious landings on the North African coast. Italy was becoming a dangerous place. Uncle Felix was keen that we go home soon.
But, that wasn't why the week with Waldi never happened…
I simply didn't see it coming…
It was wartime, and these things happen… nevertheless…
I was ready for breakfast when my room phone rang and uncle asked me to come to his room. He didn't say anything but held his arms out to me. His silence frightened me. He still said nothing. I went to him and he embraced me. He sat me on his lap, and cuddled me. He looked very serious and I immediately feared for Mama and Papa… my brothers, but then…
"Hansi, I am so sorry, there is no easy way to tell you this… I have heard from Naples… Last night there was an air-raid on the naval base there… I am so sorry… they hit Captain Lambrecht's home… Waldi and his papa didn't make it. I am so sorry."
My love was dead! The boy I was going to have… as a special friend for all time… was dead!
I hated the enemy… hated…hated…
They had killed the person I loved, my first love… the boy that I had not yet… The one… He was to be my future. I was so angry… not sad yet, that would come later… now I was just angry.
Much later Uncle said that I howled like an animal. I couldn't speak… I was… angry.
I swore that I would have them, that I would kill, that I would defend the Reich to my last breath… as long as the Fuhrer wanted me I was his… his enemies were my enemies! I was determined that when the time came I was going to kill as many of the enemy as I was able. I didn't care whether they were Americans, English or Russians.
If they were my Fuhrer's enemy then that was sufficient.
I wanted blood on my hands, the hands that had touched Waldi…
I needed blood on them.
I felt sure that my beautiful Waldi would understand… that beautiful blond, muscular body, my love… destroyed by a bomb! I could not conceive of him being dead. I remembered him, his embrace, his kissing., his knees on my shoulders as he joyfully showed me that he really could masturbate while doing a hand-stand… dead.
I demanded to be allowed to attend the funeral… I imagined a beautiful, emotional occasion with ladies in black, music and flowers. Uncle said no. There would be no beautiful funeral. There had already been a brief military interment. The army hadn't waited for relatives to arrive… a trench, some sheets and a trumpet… that was all that war-time had permitted.
I was devastated… not only had I lost my Waldi but there was to be no goodbye, and no marble headstone to lay flowers on after the war… Uncle said that it was not likely that the graves were individual… probably just a trench and a marker with the date of the air-raid.
"There were hundreds dead… they won't have had time to make things pretty."
Although his bluntness sounds brutal, as indeed it was, I think that he was actually being kind… He knew that I would want to visit Naples as long as there was a chance of being able to sit at my Waldi's grave-side.
No grave-side… no moping to sit beside it! A brutal logic… but he was right.
To that extent he was right. I have never been to Naples… then or after the war. In fact I have never returned to Italy. But… for me… my love for Waldi never ended…
He will always be the joyful thirteen year old who could do handstands and used my hips as pommels to do gymnastics… the boy from whom I received my first real kisses and my first real lovemaking.
I never saw the things; flowers, coffin, grave… the things that make you truly dead… I never saw them. so for me he is still not quite dead… somewhere I cannot reach him… yes… but not dead.
After that, when alone in bed, I had a ritual.
I would masturbate while thinking in as much detail as I could about my blond love, my Waldi. The memory of him was what would bring me to my climax. Then as I lay there in the small grief that follows, I would build on that grief to sob my heart out… building my anger with dreams of becoming a fighter pilot or perhaps a U-boat captain.
I liked the idea of the fear that must come to a flyer as his downed plane plunges slowly to earth… or the terror of sailors plunged into the inky black Atlantic. I didn't want them to die quickly. The people who killed my Waldi… I wanted them to die excruciatingly slowly!
Whatever my doubts had previously been about the rightness of the way we acted, now I had no doubts. My heart was with the Fuhrer. If the war lasted long enough I would ask him, or the Reichsfuhrer-SS to place me in the front line. I envisioned my death in battle, with Waldi's name on my lips.
My time would come… I would be tested and I would not let them down, my Waldi or my Fuhrer.
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