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Chapter 5: Freeze Frame

Can't remember if my last chapter was 3 or 4 but anyway, here is the next installment. It's raw, no time for beta. Leaving now for the remote boonies, so unsure if I'll still have internet. Y'all have a safe and fun Labor Day! Have a great time. Randall

Brian saw her even before he pulled up to the curb at the airport. She was so anxious to be reunited with her son that she was waiting outside the terminal, despite the chill. His first impression was that she had changed very little. Still tall and voluptuous, she was wearing brown suede pants with a cream-colored cashmere sweater and a long brown leather trench coat. He couldn't tell if her hair was cut off or pulled back, from the distance, but stray tendrils broke free to curl seductively around her pretty face. She carried a Gucci satchel and a shoulder bag. He left the Jeep and called her name, but she had already spotted the car and was headed his way.

Their eyes met, appraised, a shared nervousness silencing them as he put her bag in the back and she sat in the shotgun seat, missing only Michael complaining that he always had to sit in the backseat. Brian shoved the Jeep into gear and turned down the volume on the sound system so they could talk. A scent drifted over to him. It was faintly seductive, not overpowering. Shalimar, maybe? A classic fragrance, whatever it was.

"How is he?" she asked and he shrugged.

"Clean. I made him take a shower and his clothes are being laundered."

"He's alone at your place?"

"No. Mikey's with him. So is Justin."

"Mikey, god. He's still around, huh?"

Brian smiled. "Some things are as eternal as stink on a skunk."

Dee laughed. "Did you two ever put it together?"

"Christ, no! Friends. Still and only."

"Who's Justin?"

"He's the one I did put it together with," Brian said after a thoughtful pause. He wondered how to characterize his relationship with Justin, and decided on honesty.

"Ah. Congratulations."

"No big deal. It seems to be working for the moment."

"You grew up good, Brian. You're more handsome than ever."

"You're more beautiful."

"No, but thanks. I try to maintain the status quo."

"Married?" Brian inquired and she sighed.



"Two years ago. We're still friends."

"What happened?"

"Life," she glanced out the window at the dark cityscape, remembering her life here and feeling very distant from it.

"Yeah," Brian said softly, admiring her profile. "It has a way of doing that."

"Did you ever marry, Brian?"

He laughed. "Christ, no!"

"Ever consider it?"

"Never. I figured myself out pretty early, Dee. I would never marry anyone knowing what I know about myself."

"You weren't so sure of it when I first met you."

"I was a kid. I was scared."

"We were all scared," she said with a sigh.

"Do you have other kids?" he asked.

"No, just Mick."

"I have a son Gus. He's still a baby."

She turned to face him straight on. "How did that happen?"

"Not the usual way," he said, smiling. "His mom and I were friends in college. Brief and stupid romance. Turns out she's gay, too. When she and her partner decided to get pregnant, she asked me to donate."

"So you did."

"Yeah, all I did was jerk off in a cup. I didn't hang around for the ceremony of the turkey baster."

She laughed. "What a guy!"

He shrugged. "I do what I can. So, is he mine?"

"You tell me. Did someone else contribute to the cup?"

"Not Gus. I know Gus is mine. You know who I mean."

"If you're sure you have Mick corralled and he can't escape, let's go somewhere and talk, Brian."

"He wouldn't get far in my short navy silk robe in this weather."

"Then let's stop somewhere."

He nodded, redirecting the Jeep.

It was an odd sight at Woody's. Brian Kinney in a back booth in quiet conversation with a woman who was neither a dyke nor the mother of his best friend. He was utterly unapproachable to tricks, who sensed his unavailability and stayed away. If Dee was uncomfortable to be in a gay venue, she showed no evidence of it. He lit a cigarette and stared at his mostly untouched beer as she sipped a Cosmopolitan.

She looked up at him, reaching across the table to rest her hand on his arm. "It is so good to see you again, Brian. I think of you so often."

"I think of you too, Dee," he subtly slid his arm free of her touch. It was as if the intimacy of that gesture was too disturbing. "Why didn't you ever contact me? You promised you would. You promised." He sounded almost like that hurt teenager from so long ago, before he recaptured his cool and leaned back in the booth, exhaling softly. "Sorry. I just don't understand it. I never did."

"We were such kids," she said by way of explanation. He refused to accept that excuse.

"We were friends, Dee. More than friends. I deserved better than that. You really hurt me. What was it? I was too blue collar for you? Too white? Too queer?"

"Brian, I was too pregnant. I never wanted you to know about it. Around the time I confirmed my fears, my Mom was offered that gig in Austria, working in their opera company for a year, and I went with her. It was the perfect cover."

"I remember," he said quietly. "I remember the day you told me you were leaving. It was Halloween."

"Yes," she said with a sigh. "It was."

"But that wasn't the most important day between us, was it, Dee?"

"What do you mean?"

"I mean the most important day was October 15th."

She looked surprised. "You remember the date?"

"They say you never forget your first time."

"Yes," she said, her expression suddenly wistful. "But we have so many other memories, Brian. I find it difficult to key on that one. I remember more precisely the day that I knew I had fallen in love with you."

"When was that?"

"Friday afternoon, September 8th. In the parking lot at school, after soccer practice. We were alone, because you ditched Mikey. You two had an argument. Not sure what it was about. You had been in a terrible mood all day, and you just snapped. He left in a huff. I waited for you until practice ended, to take you home. I was so worried about you."

Brian nodded, wincing as the memory of psychic pain clenched him, recalling an echo of what he was experiencing on that late afternoon in the fall of 1986.

Dee saw him walk out of the gym doors with a couple of teammates. He had just showered and his hair was still wet, appearing darker and flatter against his head. His red letter jacket with white leather sleeves and a white felt letter was unsnapped over a sweater and jeans. He looked like a model in a magazine, advertising high school chic. He had preoccupied her thoughts all day. He had been snappish and remote, arguing with Michael and monosyllabic with her. She had no idea what was bothering him and he refused to discuss it.

She started to move so he could drive her Mustang, but he stopped her and got in the other door. "You drive," he said, fishing a cigarette out of her glove box, where he stored them, and lighting up.

"Want to get something to eat?" She asked, remembering how he had picked at his lunch. He had to be ravenous after running for miles during soccer practice.

He shook his head. "Not hungry."

"Want to go to my house? Mama has a concert tonight, so she won't be home and Daddy's at work." That invitation translated into a session of heavy petting and dry humping resulting in mutual orgasms.

"Sure," he said listlessly, without his usual enthusiasm over the chance to be alone with her. Things were heating up between them and she knew, inevitably, one of these sessions would result in the loss of her virginity. She wasn't rushing it but she had made up her mind that Brian Kinney would be the one.

"What did you and Mikey fight about?" She asked and Brian frowned.

"I don't want to talk about it."

She figured it was about her. Michael was very threatened by her. She let Brian have his silence throughout the remainder of the drive to her townhouse. Alone in her bedroom, they listened to Tone Loc's mellow rap. Brian stretched out on her bed, staring at the ceiling, making no move on her. She lay beside him, her head resting on his arm, her hand gently stroking his chest.

"What's wrong, baby?" She finally asked and he said, simply,


"You were unhappy before the fight with Mikey. Is it your dad?" Brian wouldn't say much about his family, but she heard enough to know that he and his father had a volatile, unhappy relationship. She even suspected Jack Kinney had been physically abusive with Brian, especially when Brian was smaller and younger, less likely and less capable of defending himself.

He said nothing and she sighed. "I'm sorry, Brian. I know how you feel."

"How do you know?" he suddenly snapped, turning his face to look at her. He was flushed, his voice strained with tension. "You live in this perfect place with perfect parents who spoil you and would do anything for you. Even Mikey has a Mom who thinks he can do no wrong. What the fuck do either one of you know about anything?" He got up, paced over to the window and stood there, his back to her, apparently staring out at the evening.

"You're right," Dee said softly, walking over to him. She snaked her arms around his waist and rested her cheek between his shoulder blades. "I don't know what you go through. But I do know how much I care about you and how sad it makes me that he hurts you."

"The only people I ever felt secure with besides Mikey and you were my grandparents," he said softly, covering her hands at his waist with his own. "They had this great little farm. They died a couple years ago, one right after the other. As the oldest son, my dad inherited the farm. His younger brother lives there and runs it for him, but my dad pays him a salary since he has no rights to it. Now, Dad's sold the place. We're going out there tomorrow to pack up anything we want to keep. The rest will go to other relatives, and what's left will go to the buyer. I was happy there, Dee. And this will be the last time that I'll ever see it."

He grew silent, but she could tell by the heaving of his body that he was crying. She tightened her embrace and then walked around to stand in front of him, pulling him into her arms. He rested his face on her shoulder and cried quietly. He didn't cry for the loss of the property, but for the closing of the door on his tactile memory of his grandparents and also on the only happy childhood memories that he was able to retain.

She held him until he was calm, then she kissed him gently. "Take me with you, Brian. Let me be there for you and show me the things you loved best about the place. I want to share it with you before it's gone," she hesitated, and then said, "I love you."

He leaned back to look at her, his wet eyelashes catching a crystal spectrum from the lamp. He looked even more beautiful, almost spectral. "You do?"

"I think I do."

"I think I love you too."

They kissed, deeply, and Dee thought this was the day. She would give it up to Brian that evening when he was so vulnerable, so hurt. She would do something wonderful for him that would ease his pain and bring them even closer. She guided him towards the bed, and he stretched out on his side, watching her as she peeled off her sweater, wearing a violet lace bra that looked like spun sugar on her golden brown skin. He had never watched her undress, most of their pleasure coming under the cover of open buttons and raised hems. It was a strangely hooded method of finding sexual release, the fear of discovery stopping them from peeling off their clothes.

He was transfixed by her beauty, the gentle rise of her breasts above the cups of the bra, the taut look of her belly that sloped into a narrow waist and swelled slightly where her hips began. She wore tight black velvet jeans, and when she popped open the button and lowered the zipper, Brian groaned, feeling his erection grow to full mast. He was almost as scared as he was excited, and when he saw that her bikini panties matched her bra, he reached down to give himself a comforting squeeze. Her long legs were beautiful and smooth and the overall impact of her body took away his breath.

Dee smiled shyly at his expression, his admiration making her feel beautiful. She shrugged her thick mane of curls over her shoulders and twisted a strand of it around her index finger. "What do you think?" she asked coyly, and Brian sighed.

"I think you're beautiful."

"I think you're beautiful too, Brian," she said, glancing down his long torso to the full buige at his fly. "Very beautiful."

She sat beside him on the bed and pulled his sweater up, revealing his stomach and chest. He helped her get it over his head. She leaned forward to kiss a taut brown nipple that puckered under her caress. He groaned, unbuttoning his fly with one hand while his other wandered over the silky skin she had exposed to him. She shimmied his jeans down his long, muscular thighs, noticing the ridge that tented the front of his tighty-whities. Dee straddled his legs, towering over him, her crotch just above his erection as he reached up and cupped her breasts.

She leaned down to kiss him and by doing so, stroked his hard cock with the silky expanse between her legs. Brian had to struggle not to come, just from that contact, thrusting his tongue down her throat as she stretched out above him. His hands moved to her firmly rounded butt and he smoothed it gently, pressing her even closer to his body. He was experiencing an instinctive need to rut, to plant his erection somewhere tight and wet and stroke it there until the heat dissipated in a rush of semen.

He flipped her under him, carrying his weight on his extended and braced arms as he moved his pelvis against her, her legs spread on either side of his hips. She tilted her body up to greet his lunge as he kissed her hotly. And then...

Three short beeps.

The deactivated burglar alarm sent this notice out when someone opened one of the doors. Someone had entered the house.

"Fuck!" Dee pushed him off, and they began scrambling for clothes. Brian scooped his up and fled to the attached bathroom while she quickly pulled on her sweater and jeans, smoothing her hair as her mother opened her door.

"Hi Mom," she said with forced cheerfulness and her mother looked around and smiled slightly. She sensed something was up and spying Brian's letter jacket, she could guess what that something was.

"Dee. Where's Brian?"

"Bathroom," she said casually, forcing a smile.

"I thought we agreed no boys in the house when we aren't home."

"Mom, he's not just a BOY. He's BRIAN!"

Her mother met her eyes with a frank expression. "That's supposed to comfort me in some way?"

"Don't you trust me?" Dee used the timeless adolescent plea that was a shameless accusation since the adolescent was almost always saying it while hiding the fact they had done exactly what their parent feared.

"I trust you, honey. I don't trust your hormones. You two come downstairs, and I'll make you a snack."

In the bathroom, Brian finished himself off with a couple strokes, too far gone to stop. This wasn't the way he wanted to come, but at least it took the starch out of his cock and he was able to dress. When he re-entered her bedroom, he smiled sheepishly at Dee. "Are we in trouble?"

"No, she's cool. We'd better do downstairs, though. I want her to be comfortable so I can go to the farm with you without any threat."

He nodded, kissing her once more before they went down the stairs. Brian wondered how he could make his own mother understand that taking Dee was the thing to do. He had already invited Mikey to come and maybe that fact would somehow neutralize his bringing Dee along. He suspected his father would be thrilled, since he was so convinced Brian was a fag, but his mother would be uncomfortable. Being a teenager so sucked, Brian thought yet again, dreaming of a time he could have the absolute freedom of his own place.

At Woody's, Brian ordered another beer, Dee another Cosmo. Memory lane required lots of alcoholic accompaniment.

"I'm surprised your Mom let you go," Brian said, recalling the last trip to the farm.

"Well, after talking to your Mom, and to Debbie, she felt there would be adequate supervision. I don't think your mom liked it very much either. I wasn't sure if it was the black thing or what. But she was so cold to me."

Brian smiled. "Trust me, It had nothing to do with being black or white. It's just my mom. She's cold to everyone, but God."

"The farm was such a beautiful place, Brian. I understood right away while you loved it."

Brian sighed, remembering that geography with his heart. That last trip, so poignant and so painful seemed to mark a turning point in his relationship with Dee. One he never fully understood. That fact added a layer of complexity to his thoughts about that weekend. He wanted to ask her now, but she looked so sad, suddenly, so wistful.

"What's wrong?" he asked.

"I was remembering my daddy. He was the one who convinced mom to let me go, who said they could trust my good sense and what a nice boy you were. He always liked you, Brian."

"I liked him too. I saw his obituary a few years ago. The funeral was in Philly, where he was living with your mom, and it described you as being in Atlanta, and that he had one grandson. I wanted to write you, but I never found your address. I guess because your married name was different."

"I heard your dad died fairly recently."

"Yeah. Cancer."


Brian shrugged. "Everyone dies. I told him before he went. About being gay and about Gus."

"How did he take it?"

"Not good at first, but he came around."

"And your Mom is still alive?"

"Yeah. Yours?"

"Yes, but she's moved to New York City where she's become quite active in the business side of the Met Opera."

"Nice. Lovely lady."

"When did you figure out that you were gay, Brian? Because when I knew you it sure didn't seem that way to me. I knew you had fooled around a little and..."

"I was always gay, Dee. You were a detour."

She met his eyes. "That sounds cold."

"Not meant to be. Just factual."

She meant to ask him one more question, but couldn't find the words. A question about the farm, what happened there. She hesitated, unable to formulate a way to open the subject. So he opened it for her.

"When are we going to talk about Mickey?"

"I guess now," she said softly and Brian leaned back in the booth, ready to hear the truth.


Go to Chapter 6

Disclaimer: The television show Queer As Folk and its characters are the property of Showtime and CowLip Productions. No money is being made. Stories and discussion are intended purely for the entertainment of fans of Queer as Folk, the Brian and Justin characters, and Randall's writings.
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July 25, 2004