BETWEEN THE SESSIONS
Here is the gapfiller I promised you to lead up to session 4 of Deconstrucing Brian and to lead up to the Emergency session. I'll try to more orderly interweave the sessions and the gapfillers if this exposition appeals to you guys. Let me know. Randall
This is to give some story to what is happening with Brian Justin, before Brian goes to the session number four (where he starts out quite happy) and also before he asks for an emergency meeting with the doctor.
You may recall, after episode three, Brian found Justin in New York, and they spent the night together. (This is all written in Blue Lights II). This installment would fill in what happened after that reunion and before Brian went to his fourth session, then pick up again before Brian called the emergency.
Brian awoke to a gentle caress against his neck. He smiled against his pillow, not opening his eyes. He felt so good, he didn't want to interfere with the sensation. The lurid relaxation of solid sleep combined with a feather light sexual stimulation was almost unbearably delicicious.
"Briiiiiiiian," a voice whispered against his ear. "Wake up!"
"Ummph," he responded ambiguously and the voice persisted.
Brian flipped over on his back and pulled the persistent blond on top of him. "What is your fucking problem?" He asked with a smile and Justin licked his cheek before responding.
"You are. You're sleeping more than my grandma and she's half comatose."
"I've been sleep deprived," he responded, looping his arm behind Justin's neck and giving him a bump with his hips. He couldn't believe how well he had slept since Justin's arrival in New York. Sleep made an incredible difference in his life. He was less grumpy, far more creative and much less depressed.
"Yeah, well I've been Brian deprived, so which is worse?" Justin teased, knitting his fingers together on top of Brian's head. Brian reached up and kissed him, letting his hands travel down his smooth body to rest on the rounded curve of his rump.
"What are the symptoms of Brian deprivation?" He asked as Justin smiled and wiggled his pelvis against Brian's stiffening cock.
"Besides a lack of aggravation?"
"Very droll," Brian pinched his ass. Justin laughed and went on.
"The main symptom of Brian deprivation is a localized swelling right here," he put Brian's hand on his cock. "Followed by a sense of emptiness, here," he put his other hand on his ass. "And finally an annoying itchiness on the tongue because it wants to go here." He slipped his tongue in Brian's mouth. Brian sucked it down deeply and set about making all of Justin's other symptoms disappear.
Pouring through the old vinyl in Bleeker Bob's Music Store in the Village, Justin looked over at Brian's profile, and announced. "The gallery owner who wanted to see my shit said I should move to New York. She said this is the art center and that I was being wasted in Pittsburgh."
"Everyone is wasted in Pittsburgh," Brian said cautiously without looking up.
"She wanted to put me in a gallery show with some other promising young artists, but she said it almost wasn't worth it unless I was here to do the promo work."
"I hope she has a big enough place for you and your husband, or wife, or whatever the fuck he is."
Justin insinuated himself between Brian and the record bin, forcing him to meet his eyes. "I've had a wonderful time these last few days with you, Brian. It was almost like the old days when we were first together."
"You mean when you stalked me?"
"Be serious for once."
Brian moved away from him and left the store, lighting a cigarette as soon as he hit the street. Justin followed, looping his arm through his as they walked. "I brought the sunshine with me. Remember how hard it was raining when I first arrived here?"
"Yeah, its called Indian Summer, Justin. Get over yourself."
"Are you mad at me all of a sudden?"
"No, I..." Brian stilled another sarcastic rej0inder. He thought of what Lydia had told him about repressing his emotions. He decided to respond honestly. "I don't appreciate being played, Justin."
"You come here, you get rid of your Brian deprivation, you go back to your boyfriend. I don't need that shit."
Justin suddenly grabbed his arm and slammed Brian's back up against the brick wall of a nearby brownstone. Brian held his hands out, laughing at this sudden assault. Justin wasn't laughing. He knew Brian could easily overpower him, but he pressed in, one hand flat against Brian's pectorals as he said, "It's not a game. And Brian deprivation is not a joke. It's a disease."
"How flattering to be called a disease."
"It's always been a three way with my lover and me, Brian. The two of us and the ghost of you."
"So what happens next? We make pottery together?"
Justin placed a finger on Brian's lips. "No joking. No sarcasm. Okay?" Brian nodded. "Good. Now tell me what you want?"
"I don't know what I want," Brian said softly.
Justin took a step back and sighed. "When you figure it out, give me a call."
He started walking and Brian watched, then trotted to catch up to him. He took his arm, but Justin pulled free. He grabbed it more firmly and Justin stopped to glare at him. "If the Steelers had your blocking game, they'd be in the Super Bowl every year." Justin snapped and Brian chuckled.
"You're making a sports analogy?"
"Shut UP!" Justin repressed a smile as Brian released his arm as they began walking again.
"Justin, I'm working on it. I'm seeing a shrink. I'm trying."
"I know Brian. That's why I'm still here."
"I honestly don't know what difference it will make, if any. Maybe it wont. Maybe this is just how I'm supposed to be."
"Are you happy this way?" Brian shrugged, lit another cigarette. "Sometimes. No, not really."
"Well then nothing. I'm working on it. I'm doing it for me, not you, not anyone else. Me."
"That's how it should be."
Brian glanced at Justin's watch. "In fact, I have to be there in a half hour. Before I go I need to know one thing."
"What?" Justin asked, smiling as Brian pulled him into his arms. It was the Village, after all. The tourists would just have to get over it.
"Will you be there at my loft when I come home from Lydia's?"
Justin smiled and kissed him gently on the lips. "Of course I will be. After all, we have theater tickets for tonight."
"Bitch!" Brian said with a laugh as he slapped his ass, and released him from his embrace, holding onto his hand as they walked back to the loft.
***Brian attends Session 4 with Lydia, which you can read in the Deconstructing Brian series. This next section picks up a day after session 4 and before Brian calls and demands an unscheduled emergency meeting with Lydia.****
Brian watched the other patrons in the King Cole Bar at the elegant St. Regis Hotel watch Justin cry. Under the Maxfield Parrish mural of King Cole and his minions, Justin looked impossibly young and innocent and he knew the glares directed at them were all for Brian. He was the monster who said something to make this beautiful blond boy weep. Brian was uncomfortable with emotional public displays, especially in heterosexual territory. He didn't even want to go to this fucking bar. He often met important clients there, and he always considered it a work stop, not for pleasure. But Justin read about it in New York Magazine, so he just had to see the mural and the ambiance.
Brian downed his neat scotch and ordered another. The waiter glared imperiously at him as he offered Justin a linen handkerchief and walked away. "Would you fucking STOP it?" Brian finally whispered through clenched teeth and Justin shook his head.
"Why n-n-not?" Brian mocked him and Justin smiled through his tears and tossed the soggy handkerchief at him. Brian deflected it and let it fall to the floor.
"I just didn't expect it!" Justin reached across the table to cover Brian's hand with his own, and Brian let it stay there, despite the murmurs among the heterosexuals observing them.
"How could you not expect it? We've spent the last week locked at the hip. I even took off work a few days. We've fucked like rabbits," he raised an eyebrow at the waiter, who left his drink, leered, and moved on. "How can it be such a surprise?"
"I don't fucking know, but it fucking is, okay?"
"Okay, okay, don't turn on the waterworks again! Look, you've dropped more hints than Hanzel and Gretel dropped bread crumbs. Isn't this what you wanted?"
"To move in with you? Well, duh!"
"Then...?" Brian shrugged and Justin sighed.
"It's not that easy, Brian."
"Why isn't it?"
"There's another person involved. Back in Pittsburgh. I've lived with him for a year now. I can't just... I owe him some kindness at a minimum."
Brian slipped his hand out from under Justin's and leaned back in his chair, lighting a cigarette. A cold rush of fear began to filter through him as he considered the fact he could well be setting himself up for yet another rejection by Justin. Once wasn't enough. Give him another chance to gut him. Maybe he misread the signals. Maybe Justin was just hot for him, and wanted a little stray sex before he returned home to his safe life with another man. Maybe he was being used the way he had used so many others. His defenses, weakened by Lydia's sessions, flared.
"Look, fuck it. It's a dumb idea anyway. Just forget I said anything."
Justin narrowed his eyes at him, blinking away the last traces of his tears. "Fuck you, Brian. Don't run for cover just because I mentioned the obvious fact that I have to consider how this will impact my lover and whether I would be happier with you. It's a risk, I understand that. Step up to it."
"Fuck YOU," Brian responded calmly. "You think you're the queen of the hill, and you get to sit up there and do eenie meenie with people's emotions? If you didn't know what you wanted, you never should have thrown me those broad hints!"
"I never said I don't know what I want. I know exactly what I want. I want what I've wanted since the night I met you. But that's a fantasy. What I'm weighing is the reality. I can't go back to how it was, Brian. It wasn't working for me."
"Not for me either."
"Then what are we talking about?"
Brian hesitated, then shrugged. "Truthfully, Justin, I'm not sure."
Justin leaned back in his chair and sighed. "That's not very comforting."
"It's the truth."
"Well, what do you want, Brian?"
"I don't know exactly what I want. I only know one thing."
"I want you in my life."
Justin met his eyes and smiled sadly. "That sounds so good, considering the source, but Brian...it's just not enough."
"Maybe not, but right now it's all I have to offer."
"Will you want to go hunting together? Pick up tricks like we used to do? Fuck them together?"
"Is that what you want?"
"I never did. I did it because that was the game. That was the only way I could have you."
Brian shook his head, focusing on the mural, then back at Justin. "I don't want some ritualized set of rules, Justin. That was stupid. I want to play it out, see how it develops. I don't want to rub your nose in my wandering, but on the other hand, I don't know how to do monogamy, and I don't want to be ragged every time I stray."
Justin rolled his eyes in frustration. "If you want to fuck around, why do you need me?"
"I'm not saying I do want to fuck around. I'm just saying I can't promise monogamy and I don't want to be punished for doing what I think is natural for gay men."
"Is that your way of saying you're willing to try?"
"I don't know. Is it?"
"Brian, can I strangle you? I think no one on any jury would ever convict me."
Brian smiled wryly. "You and what army?"
"I can be formidable when I'm mad."
"Yeah, I remember."
"Let's go to dinner. We have a reservation in fifteen minutes. Let's just table this for now."
Relieved, Brian waved for the check, charged it on a platinum card and left with one over the shoulder smirk meant for everyone in the joint.
Sensing something was wrong, Brian woke up abruptly at three am, and found the bed empty. "Justin!" He called out, and a soft voice responded from the sofa in the next room.
"It's ok, Bri. I'm here."
Brian pulled on a robe and walked into the open living area, sitting beside him and pulling him into his arms. Justin snuggled against his body, his soft blond hair tickling Brian's strong chin. "What's wrong?"
"I woke up."
"I see that. That's supposed to be my trick."
"I'm going back to Pittsburgh in the morning. I've already made my airline reservation."
Brian tensed, willed himself to be cool, betray no pain. He felt the pain however. He felt it begin like a clamp being twisted closed on his entrails, then doused with fuel and lit with a torch. He released Justin, and walked over to the bar. He felt strangely numb in his extremities, only his torso seemed to be aflame. He poured himself a drink and downed it in one gulp. "Have a safe trip," he said softly, his own voice sounding strained and alien.
"What's wrong?" Justin asked. Brian walked over to the window, opening the blinds to look out at a rain slicked street and no traffic. He supposed Justin was taking the sunshine back with him to Pittsburgh. He wanted to say something smart, but he couldn't find the words. He couldn't find any words at all.
"Brian," Justin came up behind him, looping his arms around his waist, feeling his tension. "I'm not going back to him. Not really. But I am going to talk to him. I need to make sure. This is a big decision."
Brian relaxed, but only slightly. This was a delay of the death sentence, not a commutation. "Fine."
"Don't be this way, Brian. I can't just make the call without even talking to him."
"I don't give a shit what you do," Brian said, leaving his arms. He sat down heavily in the chair, wishing he had poured himself another drink.
"Yes, you do care, god damn it. If you didn't care, I wouldn't be facing a dilemma."
"You do what's right for you. I'm going to bed."
Brian dropped his robe and fell face down on the mattress, even though he knew sleep would be impossible. Finally, Justin stretched out beside him, gently stroking his back.
"I'll always love you, Brian."
Brian squinted his eyes closed. Those were the words you said to a former lover. He knew sex was his weapon. He knew how to ring Justin's bell better than anyone. Hell, he invented those bells. He should seduce him, remind him of how it was between them, make him scream for more. But he couldn't. All he could do was lie there and not give in to the pain. Justin sighed and kissed his neck, before he finally rolled over and fell asleep. Brian listened to him breathe, aching to touch him, but determined to maintain the dignity of his solitude.
Two days later...
Brian swiveled from his desk to the window of his office, overlooking Madison Avenue in midtown Manhattan. Below, a conga line of yellow cabs snaked slowly along rain clogged streets and people hid beneath black umbrellas like trolls hiding under bella donna toad stools. He drummed a pen on his thigh, trying to find some reason to keep from flinging the chair out that plate glass window and following it with his body. He was in chaos, although externally he appeared glacier cool and calm. He hadn't been able to sleep since Justin left. If he did fall asleep, he was plagued by nightmares, and his only thoughts seemed to be about himself.
He couldn't work.
Sex had proven less than therapeutic.
Drugs and alcohol had no effect.
His emotions were on some fucking roller coaster that never seemed to end. They would double loop back again and then leave him hanging upside down, contemplating a jump from fifteen stories up.
He didn't really want to die.
But he didn't really want to live.
He had no idea who he was, anymore.
He sure as hell wasn't Brian Kinney.
Who was to blame for this destruction of his personality? Was it Justin? He wasn't pleased with Justin right now. He spoke to him every day and Justin assured him he was closer than ever to making his decision, but Brian had lost patience and was sick of the whole drama. Was it himself? Was he angry that he made a fool of himself with Justin and now what? Was he furious that he set himself up for more pain, walked right into the lethal blond's velvet trap?
He was mad at Lydia.
The doctor from hell who peeled back his skin in layers, leaving him raw and unprotected. Lydia, with the x-ray vision who could see through all his best bullshit. The cool bitch with all the right words and none of the answers. The source of his pain, the one who failed to cure him, the know- it- all woman who knew nothing about helping him. Lydia sucked. He never wanted to see Lydia again. He was through paying her a fortune for pain. If he wanted to pay a woman for pain, he could hire a dominatrix and at least get his rocks off as part of the bargain. He was through with her and he would call and tell her so. And why. The fucking fraud. The faker, the snake oil saleswoman.
He punched her number on his speed dial. Delores, her efficient assistant, answered immediately. Brian froze. "Hello?" She said, and he sighed.
"This is Brian Kinney."
"Yes Mr. Kinney."
"Let me talk to her."
"She's with a patient."
Fine. He would fire her by proxy through her assistant. He didn't even have to see the bitch again. "May I help you, Mr. Kinney? Is this about your next session?"
Brian closed his eyes. He drew in a ragged breath, then forced composure.
"I have to see her now!" He heard himself say, and Delores sounded perplexed.
"She's fully booked, Mr. Kinney."
"It's...it's an emergency. Please. I have to see her today. Ask her. Please, I'll hold."
"I can't interrupt her."
"JUST FUCKING ASK HER!" He raged, then sighed, searching for a calm he didn't feel. "I'm sorry, I'm sorry. I can't...I can't breathe. Please, ask her if she can see me."
She placed him on hold. It seemed an hour passed before she came back on, but he knew it was only minutes.
"Mr. Kinney? Are you still there?"
"Tonight at seven." He closed his eyes, feeling relief roll through him in waves. "Thank you. Really, thanks."
"Will you be alright until then?"
"Fine," he lied and hung up. He glanced at the clock on his computer.
It was almost four. He had three hours to kill. He thought of places he could go, without glass windows overlooking streets far below, without drugs to numb a phantom pain, without telephones and deadlines and people clawing at him to produce. His secretary seemed relieved to see him go. He knew he had been a bear to her over the last couple of days. He would make it up to her later, if he ever felt normal again.
He hailed a cab and gave the driver an address. He watched the city crawl by in late afternoon bad weather slow motion. Windows full of fashion he liked to buy. Handsome men sprinting for cover, men he would like to fuck. Money being made in every square inch of this town, power being exchanged. The world he wanted, sought, worked to achieve. And yet he had never felt more outside than he did at that moment. He arrived at the address he gave the driver, walked inside and sat down on a marble bench in the foyer and stared at the ornate pattern in the granite floor. Lydia's building. He would sit there as motionless as street art, waiting until it was time to go up, holding onto his composure by a slender thread of pride.
Next scene is his Emergency Session with Lydia. See Deconstructing Brian, Unscheduled Emergency session.
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July 25, 2004