It had been six weeks since he'd left Dylan's house, and five weeks since moving into his own bedsit. He'd got a job as a shelf-filler at Sainsbury's which meant he had further to travel to get to work, but he didn't mind it. If he'd gone to Tesco's he might have run into Dylan, as he often frequented that supermarket.
His room was not bad. At first, the owner of the property didn't want to rent it to him as she thought he was too young, but as soon as he presented his driving license, she had let him take the room. He had to share the kitchen, toilet, and shower with a couple of girl students who were sharing the other downstairs room.
They soon found out that he was not interested in them and left him alone. As luck would have it, they spent most of their time in college or out partying, so that he more or less had the run of the downstairs to himself.
The room was quite expensive at £400 a month, but he did double shifts at every opportunity, which meant, after his monthly expenses, he would be able to save at least £100 a month. Actually, after his first pay check, other than pay his rent he'd hardly touched the rest of his salary as he was busy doing so many double shifts. He was beginning to lose weight, which he could ill afford as he'd been skinny from the beginning, but he just couldn't stay at home. If he did, his mind always sooner or later centred on Dylan and what was he doing and was the woman treating him better than he did. So, rather than let that happen, he worked and kept his mind occupied so that he wouldn't get upset thinking about the termination of their relationship, but even at work, at times his mind would drift back to their time together.
Dylan Roberts spent more and more time at his parent's house. Living alone without the presence of Lucas was not to his liking. When he was in his own house he couldn't wait to get out of it, the emptiness felt so oppressive it was like a blanket ready to envelope him and drag him into a fit of depression.
He'd gone to the local supermarket in search of Lucas and also to the squats where some of the homeless hung out, but with no success. His mother had been furious with him and had made it plain that she was disappointed at his behaviour. At every opportunity she would remind him that Lucas was the best thing that had happened to him and, like a fool, he'd thrown it away, with which he was in absolute agreement, which infuriated her even more.
Angela Banister had phoned him a week after their dinner date to arrange a meeting but he'd declined the offer, which had surprised her but which she took well. Even Lucy, his secretary at work, had been asking him if he was alright as he wasn't his usual bubbly self and seemed to be more withdrawn.
The weeks passed and he continued his life in the same dull manner it seemed to have taken since the departure of Lucas. One Saturday, after he'd woken and was getting dressed, the phone rang. He answered it and his mother asked him if he could get a couple of bottles of dessert wine as they were having friends over for diner this evening. He agreed to do so and said he'd be around later with the wine.
After he'd had his morning coffee he jumped into his car and headed out to Tesco's. Every time he came into the supermarket he would look around in the hope of seeing Lucas, and every time he would be disappointed. This time was no exception. As he made his way towards the wine section, his eyes darted in every direction in the hope of seeing Lucas. Arriving at the wine section, he searched for the dessert wine but couldn't find any on the shelves. Looking around for an employee, he spotted one and asked him if there was any Moscatel de Valenciain stock, as there was none on the shelves. The assistant said he would go and check. He was gone for a couple of minutes and returned saying, "I'm sorry sir we're out of stock, we're still waiting for a delivery to come in."
"Have you any idea where I can get some?"
"Yes, at Sainsbury's on Western Road. They also stock the wine."
"How do I get there?" Dylan enquired.
"Just head down the main road till you come to the second set of traffic lights, turn right at the lights, that's Western Avenue, and head along there for about a mile and you'll see Sainsbury's," the assistant replied.
"Thank you for your help," said Dylan as he left the store and headed in the direction the man had given him.
Within ten minutes he'd located the supermarket. It was his first time visiting the store as it was a bit too far out from where he lived. He parked the car, entered the store, and made straight down the centre aisle looking for the wine section. He soon located it and picked up two bottles of the wine that his mother wanted. He made his way back towards the tills and cut through one of the aisles to get to the nearest one. He stopped in his tracks. Ahead of him was a boy filling the shelves with his back towards him, but he didn't have to see the boy's face to know who it was.
He slowly approached the boy and, when just a few feet away from him, said, "Lucas?"
The boy froze momentarily, then slowly put the article he was holding on the shelf. He didn't have to turn around to see who had called his name, he'd know that voice anywhere. He turned and looked at the man standing before him, saying, "Hi Dylan, what you doing in these parts?"
When Lucas turned to face him, the man was shocked to see the appearance of the boy. His cheeks were hollow and his eyes, that looked huge on his sunken face, were tired looking. He said, "Taking you home, with these two bottles of wine."
"Can't. I'm working, and anyway, who says I want to go?"
"You just lost your job, and I say you're going."
"I'll yell if you try to force me."
"Go ahead, yell."
The boy opened his mouth and Dylan was preparing himself for a horrendous scream, but all he heard was a barely audible "Help." Lucas was standing, staring at him and smiling. Dylan came up close to the boy, gave a quick look around, and pecked him on the lips. "Come on, Lucas, let's find your manager and tell him you're quitting as of now."
"What about your bird?"
"Bird? That was no bird, that was a bloody man-eating tigress. She was only a shag like the rest of them, and never got to come home. Only one other person has lived in that house besides me, and that's you. Now move your arse and let's get out of here."
"Yeah, since when have you become all bossy and giving orders?"
"Lucas, please stop messing around, let's go home. I'm like a fish out of water with you not around."
"Okay, is that all you have to get?" the boy asked, pointing to the two bottles of wine.
"Besides you, yes," Dylan quipped.
After they'd paid for the wine, Lucas removed his working smock, got his coat, then they went to the manager's office.
Dylan, after looking at the name plate on his desk, said, "Mr. Marshall, my friend here, Lucas Briggs, has terminated his employment with your company as of now. He'll come in at the end of the month to pick up whatever money is owing to him and his employment papers."
He didn't give the manager a chance to say a word, just turned his back on him, grabbing Lucas by the arm. They made their way out of the office and headed for the car park. At the car, Dylan put the bottles on the back seat then, before Lucas could climb into the passenger side, he stopped him, saying, "You drive."
"Christ, have you gone deaf since you left the house? You heard, I said 'you drive.'"
"So you wont have to give me instructions how to get to your place to pick up your gear. Now, will you get in the bloody car and drive?"
"Ooh my, aren't we forceful all of a sudden?"
"Lucas, will you stop messing around please and just do as you're told?"
"Okay," said the boy, took the car keys, and got behind the steering wheel.
Before he could drive off, Dylan stopped him from putting the car into gear.
Lucas turned towards the man, "Now what?"
"Now, nothing." He reached over and pulled the boy towards him and brought their lips together in a passionate kiss. Breaking the kiss he smiled saying, "Now you can drive."
An hour and a half later, after giving his notice to quit the room to his landlady and packing up his belongings and putting them in the car, they pulled up into the driveway of the house. They got out of the car and, as Dylan made to unload it, the boy said, "Can we leave that till later, Dylan? I feel a bit too tired to do that now."
He looked across at the boy and walked over to him, "Okay, come on and I'll get you a cup of tea."
Inside the house Lucas just fell over in a heap. The man quickly picked him up and made for the bedroom and laid him on the bed. The boy's eyes opened and he smiled as he saw the worried face looking down at him, asking him, "What's wrong, Lucas?"
"Nothing. I'm just tired haven't slept or eaten properly for weeks and it's just all caught up with me."
"Okay, sleep and I'll wake you later. Then you can fill your stomach," he bent over and pecked the boy on the lips, then left him to sleep.
Downstairs, he phoned his mother telling her that he'd got her wine but asking could she come over and pick it up, then explained how he'd found Lucas and brought him home.
"I'll be right over, son. I want to see Lucas and make sure he's alright."
"Mum, he's only tired with all the double shifts he's been doing and not eating properly."
"Don't tell me what to do, Dylan Roberts. Who knows better, you or me?"
He sighed, "Okay mother," and broke the connection
Fifteen minutes later he was letting his mother into the house where she promptly marched upstairs to the bedroom. Seeing Lucas in bed she got a shock to see how thin the boy was. She went over to him, felt his forehead, then, taking his hand, gently pinched the flesh on the back of the hand, lifting it up then letting the flesh go. She watched how it settled back and was satisfied.
Dylan, who had followed her up and had seen what she'd done, asked her, "What was that all about?" as they made their way downstairs again.
"I was checking his temperature and also if he was dehydrated, which he isn't to both conditions. Now let him sleep for a couple of hours then wake him and get a proper meal down him, and I don't mean a burger or anything in that line."
"Okay mum. I'll go over to the Steakhouse Restaurant. They know me and will give me a meal to bring home."
He followed his mother out of the house and, after getting the bottles of wine from his car, gave them to her saying, "I don't think I'll be able to join your guests for dinner tonight, mum."
"After seeing the state of Lucas, I wasn't expecting you to attend. Now make sure you keep an eye on him."
"Don't 'mother' me, just do as you're told."
"That's better," she gave her son a kiss on the cheek, climbed into her car, and was gone as quickly as she had appeared.
After his mother had left, Dylan started unloading Lucas's belongings from the car and stacking them in the spare room. Knowing the boy's nature, he would want to put them away himself. When he'd finished he went to where the boy was sleeping to check up on him. He sat on the bed and stroked the boy's head. Although concerned about the boy's health, he was happy to see the boy back in their bed. Kissing Lucas on the forehead and leaving the room, he made his way downstairs to the sitting room .
He was still there an hour later, reading the paper, when he heard footsteps. Jumping to his feet, he went out into the hallway to see Lucas coming down the stairs.
"What are you doing out of bed?"
"What does it look like? I'm coming down the stairs because I'm hungry."
"Well, come and sit down and I'll nip over to the Steakhouse and get us something to eat."
He stood halfway down the stairs, "No, how about I come with you. Then we can go to Tesco's from the restaurant and stock up with some groceries."
"Are you crazy Lucas? You just bowled over about a couple of hours ago from exhaustion and lack of food, and now you want to go and get groceries after we've eaten. You must be out of your mind."
"Alright then, we can go tomorrow. Let's go eat."
"You want to clean up before you go; your clothes look a bit crumpled, seeing that you slept in them."
"What's up, you ashamed to be seen with me like this?"
"One more smart arse remark like that and I'll kick your arse."
The boy continued coming down the stairs and towards the man. Dylan waited till he was within arm's reach, then grabbed the boy and pulled him into his arms.
He had been skinny before he had left, but now the boy, being undernourished, felt almost delicate as he enveloped him in his arms. He lowered his head and brought their lips together and felt the rush of blood surge through his body as their tongues united, sending sensations that only this boy seemed to be able to bring to his inner self. Breaking the kiss he stared into the boys eyes. "I missed you something wicked, Lucas."
"Yeah, well now you know why I'm all fucked up because you couldn't keep your dick in your pants."
"You forgive me Lucas?"
"Bloody Hell, Dylan! If I hadn't, I wouldn't be standing here with your arms around me and your dick poking me in the stomach."
"God your such a romannnnnnnn…" Dylan's words were cut short by a pair of lips.
They returned from their meal and sat watching television, only being interrupted once by Mrs. Roberts phoning and wanting to talk to Lucas if he was available.
He tried his best to listen in on the conversation, but Lucas kept his voice down and from time to time, after saying, "Yes definitely," gave him the dirtiest of looks.
"What was all that about?" he enquired after the phone call.
The boy smiled, "Huh, your mum is not too pleased with you is she?"
"Yeah, that's only because you showed her all those fancy bloody dishes that you learnt to cook."
"Huh, you're bloody jealous 'cause she didn't even speak to you."
"Come on, stop crowing, let's go to bed."
They made their way to the bathroom and stripped to take a shower. On seeing the boy naked, Dylan sucked in his breath. He hadn't really realized how thin Lucas had become until seeing him naked. He grabbed the boy and climbed into the shower with him, then gently lowered him the floor. He took extra care in washing the boy, being as gentle as he possibly could be, till Lucas blurted out, "Dylan, I won't break."
"Lucas, be quiet," he said and continued to wash the boy, who in turn held his voice.
With their ablutions finished, and both naked lying in bed, the boy in the man's arms, he whispered in his ear, "You want to play hide-the-sausage, Dylan?"
"No, Lucas. Tonight is just about you and me being together, feeling you in my arms and the beat of your heart against my body, your breath upon my face, and knowing that you're mine is more than I can ask for."
The boy lifted his body and lay full length on top of the man, then, resting his head on Dylan's shoulder, he slept.
Dylan Roberts leaned back in his office chair relaxed and happy. The order books were full, although at one time he thought he'd blown the contract with Booth & Sons when he'd turned down the offer to meet up with Angela Bannister a second time. Luckily enough, her brother had phoned to verify the contract, although he'd said that his twin sister was a bit miffed with him and wanted the company to pull out of the deal, but he'd overridden her decision. That was just over nine months ago. Lucas was back to his normal self again, only difference being he had a few more hairs under his arms of which he was very proud, but still scrutinized his upper lip and chest for any sign of hair.
So Dylan Roberts sat, well pleased with himself, and thought that life was just a bowl of cherries, until his office door burst open and Angela Bannister stood in the doorway with two carry cots, one in each hand.
She strode into the room and set both cots on his desk, then leaned over, asking, "What is your blood group?"
"Umm, ah, AB+," Dylan answered.
"I thought so. Quite a rare group. These are yours, my partner refuses to raise someone else's children, and I have a career to think of. Their birth certificates are in the cots along with the papers I've signed giving you custody of them. They haven't been named, that you can do. It shouldn't be too hard and you can add them to the certificates when you have done so. Bye, Dylan, I don't suppose we'll see each other again." She turned to leave the office.
"Wait, you can't leave these babies here. And how does your partner know they aren't his kids?"
"Because he's Afro-Caribbean," she said raising her voice. "And what d'you mean I can't leave the babies here, I have. Bye," and she was gone, striding out of the office.
He wanted to follow her, but just then one of the babies made a cry. He dashed over to the carry cot and looked in to see it settling back to sleep. He dashed out into the outer office and saw a bewildered looking Lucy staring at him. He stared back at her, went to the office door, opened it, and looked out to see a black BMW screeching out of the parking lot. He turned back inside, went into his office, and dialed his home number.
"Well, don't go out now. Stay in, I'm on my way home, we've got trouble.
"I'll explain when I get home or, better still, I'll show you." He hung up.
He dialed again. "Mum, can you come over to our place? I'm just on my way home, I don't have time to explain over the phone, but it's very important so get there as soon as possible," he hung up again. He picked up the two carry cots, dashed out, telling Lucy to take over the office and to lock up when she went home, then made his way out to his car. He strapped the two cots into the back seat and drove home. On his arrival he had to ring the doorbell as he had his hands full.
On opening the door, Lucas just stared for a few seconds before saying, "Now what the bloody hell have you gone and done?"
"Nothing," Dylan said, walking into the house. "That Bannister woman walked into the office, dumped these two kids on my desk, asked me my blood group, then, when I told her, she said 'they're yours', and before I could do anything, she was gone."
"Well, you did do something then, didn't you? You stuck your dick in her crutch without protection, moron."
"Umm, I suppose so, but they don't have to be mine."
"If she's checked their blood groups and asked you yours, then she must have known they were yours the moment you told her your blood group."
Their conversation was interrupted by the doorbell. Lucas went over, opened the door, and Mrs. Roberts strode into the house, asking, "What's the emergency?"
Lucas pointed over to the carry cots. "Those. Seems like someone's been dipping his wick, oops, I mean, having unprotected sex."
"What?" Mrs. Roberts exclaimed, went over to the cots and looked in to see a month old child in each. Standing up, she confronted her son, "Dylan, how could you?"
"Oh, it's quite easy, Mrs. Roberts," Lucas said. "First you take your trousers off, then your underwear…"
"Enough, Lucas," Mrs. Roberts said, giving the boy a withering look. "I'm well aware of the reproductive ritual of the human species, you don't have to go into detail."
Then, turning to her son, she stuttered, "But, but, but, two babies!"
"Yes, well, when you have two at one go," Lucas said rather smugly, "I think that's what you call 'twins.'"
"Alright, Lucas, less of the sarcasm. If you haven't anything constructive to add, keep quiet. I'm not sure they're mine, mum, there's no proof," Dylan said, looking rather forlorn. "She's only got the birth certificates and papers signing custody over to me. That's not proof."
Lucas rummaged inside the cots and came up with the papers. He looked through them, then looked up. "Mrs. Roberts, is Dylan's blood group AB+?" he asked.
"Yes," she said.
"This is a blood test on the two babies and they are both AB+."
"Yeah, well, there are millions of peoples who are AB+, it could be anyone," Dylan blurted out.
"No, Dylan," Mrs. Roberts said, looking at her son. "Only about 3% of the population is in that blood group, so it seems she was right, they are your children.
"That's not all," Lucas said, grinning, "you've got one of each, Dylan, a boy and a girl, and you've yet to give them names, enter them on their certificates, and have them registered."
"What's so bloody funny that you have to grin like a Cheshire cat?"
"Oh, sorry Daddy, I won't do it again," the boy said, still grinning.
"Ha, bloody, ha," then turning to his mother, asked, "Any suggestions mum?"
"Yes, sit down and make a list of all the babies' requirements and get them in as soon as possible."
After ten minutes of writing, and with help from Lucas, Dylan presented his list for his mother's perusal.
She took the list and looked at it, "Hmm, double the quantity of milk, you have two mouths to feed, not one. Let me have your pen." Taking the pen she added a couple of more items to the list then gave the list to Lucas.
He looked at it and nodded, "Will we get the baby bath and bottle sterilizer from Mother Care?"
"Yes, now the two of you get going. I'll baby sit till you get back."
They made their way to the car and headed first to Mother Care as it closed at 5 p.m. They picked up the bath, extra bottles and teats, sterilizer, and a push chair, then headed for Tesco's. On the way there Lucas looked at the man driving the car who seemed to have a grim look about him.
"Loosen up, Dylan, it's not the end of the world."
He looked across at the boy sitting beside him with a huge grin on his face, "You're enjoying this aren't you?
"Yes at least I'll have someone else's face to look at, instead of your miserable one, and, what's more, I like babies. There's one more thing to add to your misery, you have to buy me a car."
"What? When I offered to buy you one before, you refused. Why now?"
"Because we happen to have two babies in the house, and while you're at work and I have to go to the shops, I don't intend pushing them all the way to Tesco's and back in the buggy."
"Oh, okay. So what do you want?"
"Anything, as long as it has four wheels and is roadworthy, and can hold everything. I'll leave it to you."
"Okay I'll get onto it tomorrow morning and you should have it delivered by the afternoon."
An hour and a half later they were back home and taking over from Mrs. Roberts. She had a cup of tea and then, telling them if they needed her help to ring, no matter what time it was, she would be around. Giving the babies each a kiss, she departed.
Later that evening, they sat on the settee after having fed and changed the babies. Dylan was just about to switch on the television when Lucas stopped him.
"We have to name the kids."
"Okay, any suggestions?"
Lucas looked at his partner, then shrugged his shoulders. "You're the dad, it's your job."
"Hmm, I think I like 'Lucas.'"
The boy looked at him and spoke, "You're joking."
"Nope, and we'll call the girl Lucinda."
The boy sat staring at the man, "You sure about the name, Dylan?"
"As sure as I'll ever be. I owe you so much, Lucas Briggs, and naming my son after you is the least I can do."
Lucas's face broke out in a huge grin. "That's the best idea you've had in ages, now phone your parents and let them know."
Dylan did the necessary, then came back to see Lucas sitting with his eyes closed. Not saying a word he lifted the boy into his arms and carried him to their bedroom.
He laid the boy on the bed. His eyes were now open and watching him as he stripped him of his clothing then the man undressed himself. Looking at the boy, he again lifted him and carried him to the bathroom and climbed into the shower with him.
Ten minutes later they lay, arms and legs entwined, their manhood primed and ready to go. Dylan lifted the boy's legs to gain easier access.
"Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh," came over the intercom.
"Oh shit, which one is it this time Lucas?"
"It's Lucas Junior."
"How the hell can you tell?"
"His cry is a bit more high pitched," he said and pecked his lover on the lips. "Duty calls." He got out of the bed and made his way to the other bedroom.
Dylan watched the naked figure of the boy disappear from the room, then, with a sigh, got up to follow him in case he needed any help.
The crying stopped as he entered the baby's room to see Lucas cradling Lucas Junior in his arms and singing to him. He went over to his daughter, gently picked her up, and also started to rock the child. He looked across the room at the boy who was moving around, rocking the babe. He closed the space between the two of them. Lucas smiled and in a hushed voice asked, "Everything okay, Dad?"
Dylan smiled, "Yeah, but if we're a couple, welcome to the club."
"Shit! Oops sorry babe, that wasn't meant for your ears. As usual, your idiot father, is the cause."
Dylan Roberts looked across at his young partner who was still softly singing to the babe in his arms, and silently thanked the Gods for bringing this boy into his life.
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