Chapter 1: Arrival

A silver car drove along the empty country roads. It was a sunny day, so the views from the car were all kodak moments. Perhaps they could have been slightly improved in Photoshop? The passenger taking the photos didn't think so. Green eyes, black hair and a smile that appeared with every good photo. In other cases, he frowned at a bad one.

The driver glanced at the rear view mirror. "Hey, calm down Mojo." He spoke with a southern accent of the states.

His passenger quickly looked behind him. "You heard the dumb blonde," ordered the photographer softly in a similar accent. He ruffled the dog affectionately. "We're almost there, settle down." Mojo lay down on the back seat. He whimpered. The man looking at him gave a sympathetic smile. "I know. You wanna be out there and runnin' around." He glanced at the driver, who currently wore sunglasses but had blue eyes. His blonde hair was wavy and curled around his shoulders. "Won't be much longer, will it?"

"Don't think so, it's only a couple more miles."

A mobile rang, the brunette answered. "'s're already there? No it's good. Just unload the boxes until we arrive, we're only a couple of miles from the town...okay...if you're sure which room is which...alright, see you soon?"

"So they're at the house and following the room plan we gave 'em?" checked the driver smugly.

"Seems so."


"What's the matter?"

"I've never been in a small town before. Just wondering how I'll adjust."

The blonde flashed Lewis a grin. "I've never been in one neither. I'm sure we'll do fine."

The brunette smiled affectionately. It was such a contrast to his punk-rock T-shirt that showed the logo for the band 'HIM'. He was wearing black jeans with that. The blonde somehow looked a bit smarter; wearing a dark blue shirt over a plain white T-shirt with khaki pants.

"Hey we're there!" exclaimed the driver.

Lewis was careful to take a photo of the sign they passed: 'Welcome to Stepmanford, Louisiana.' The town was very pleasant. It seemed to be a town of rows of houses, each with their own garden and front yard. The houses themselves differed in size of course. The smaller ones reminded Lewis of toy houses. The most crowded part-if you could call it that-was in the shopping area, where they saw a collection of shops standing side-by-side; a salon, a pharmacy, several clothes shops and a bank among them.

"Here it is, Carmel Road," the driver announced casually. "Look for 95."

The passenger forced himself to shut his gaping mouth. "Leslie! These houses are huge! You sure you didn't buy us a mansion?"

The blonde laughed. "Trust me, I didn't buy a mansion. Plus ours is a lil' smaller than some o'these houses."

"There it is on the left. They already changed the name on the post box for us."

'95' was pretty clear on the fence and the name on the post box was 'Lemington'. (Makes you wonder if Leslie's family came from Lemington Spa, UK.) As they turned in, the large house surrounded by its own duchy of lawn was in full view. They could also see half the front drive taken up by the truck and the men lifting the boxes out.

The car shut down. "Lou? What is it?"

Lewis was staring at the house dumbfounded. "It's so spacious. Do they wan' us to fill it with kids or somethin'?" Leslie grinned and waggled his eyebrows, causing his passenger to laugh.

The dog barked angrily. The two men quickly apologised as Lewis ruffled him again and Leslie got out. He opened the passenger door and ordered Mojo out, which he was more than happy to do. So Lewis was allowed to look back to the front.

"Hey!" He quickly got out of the car. "Hey you know what I said about that case. It's valuable equipment, let me handle it, please."

Unloading and furniture moving went quite smoothly during the next hour or so. At some point, Leslie went outside and found Lewis stroking Mojo absently.

"Hey," he said softly. The pretty brunette only responded with a bit of head movement. As the blonde-and slightly taller-man drew closer, Lewis stood up and allowed arms to wrap themselves around him. He leaned onto his lover's shoulder as Leslie kissed him on the forehead. As they admired the view, the taller ran his fingers through the dark hair of the slightly shorter. "It's nice here," he murmured. "I know we'll be happy here Lou. We're safe here too."

"Good afternoon! I'm Mark Thomson, Chief Editor of the local paper, lovely to meet you." The couple tried not to act annoyed at the jovial interruption. Mark was an old man who had no trouble moving and wrinkled as he was, miraculously had all his long, straight blonde hair intact. "It's always news when someone new moves in, hope you don't mind answerin' a couple o'questions."

"We're all finished up here!" The truck driver yelled.

Leslie nodded. "Okay, well, I'll deal with that and you can deal with the paper Lou!" Lewis could only squeek in protest before his lover hurried away. Brunette glared. Blonde grinned. And shrugged.

"Well I'll start off by noting my first observation, I see you're married."

The new resident blushed as he glanced at his wedding ring. "Uh...yeah."

"You two will fit right in." Mark's smile just got wider. "There's plenty o'happily married gay couples here. Many of 'em with kids too. Oh...what are your names? I don't think I caught them."

The interviewee frowned. ('Shouldn't someone less senile be Chief Editor?' he thought.) "I'm Lewis Lemington and he's Leslie Lemington."

"And your jobs?"

"He's a lawyer and he'll be working at the local office, sometimes outta town. I'm a freelance photographer."

The older man beamed at this. "Oh? Get any pictures in any papers at all?"

"Quite a lot actually."


The sun was quite low, but nowhere near sunset. Leslie was bringing Mojo inside, giving him such encouragements like: "It's a new house, so you need to know your new territory". After watching the dog go inside, he turned back around to...a startling sight.

It seemed that a big-eyed boy was coming towards him. The short sleeves of the boy's royal blue T-shirt reached his elbows and he wore a sleeveless, red hooded sweater over the top. He had the most perfect blue jeans and the whitest trainers, as if they had just been bought. He seemed to have some latino blood in him, even though he was a red head. His shoulder-length hair was curly. He was also carrying a lidded pot.

The boy smiled as he came closer. "Good evenin' Mr Lemington."

Leslie smiled pleasantly. "Leslie, just Leslie will do fine." It was now that he noticed that the boy was not a boy at all, just a short, young man with a cherubic face. Couldn't be any taller than 5'6. But the way he smiled made this man's brown eyes shine. In fact, Leslie kept trying to convince himself he wasn't seeing a glowing boy surrounded by sparkles.

"I'm Alan Molloy. I live with Daniel next door. I saw you and your partner movin' in, and I know how stressful moving can be, so I made you two something. Steaks, potatoes and carrots, all in gravy. Should be more than enough for two."

Leslie was so grateful he could do nothing but smile. "Thank you, you really didn't have to." He took hold of the pot.

"It was nothin', really. And you don't have to hurry, keep the pot as long as you like. Take care, and welcome to Stepmanford." This apparent angel and omen of good fortune turned around to return home.

"Thanks again Alan!" The cherubic man gave another smile and a wave. Leslie went indoors, almost excited. The first room he ended up in was the kitchen. "The people here are so nice! Our neighbour just came round with tonight's dinner." He carefully laid the pot on a table top. "Damn, I shoulda invited him inside." He just then noticed the exhausted-looking Lewis slouched on the floor. He cocked his head. "Why the long face?"

The brunette gave out a long groan. "This house is filled with boxes. Can't take it anymore."

Leslie knelt down in front of him. "We're not getting internet and TV 'til tomorrow, so we might as well keep unpacking. Let's agree to finish at least 1 room each tonight?" The tired man nodded. "You pick your room first."

Lewis sighed. "Since I'm here, I'll just do the kitchen."


It was now night. Empty, used plates were abandoned on the living room table in front of a half drunk bottle of red wine. Lewis and Leslie leaned against each other lazily on their sofa, each holding a glass and sipping wine from it. After some time, Lewis groaned.

"Those dishes really should get washed up tonight."

Leslie gave quiet protests and took his lover's glass. He laid the two on the table with everything else. He lovingly embraced his pretty brunette and kissed lovingly on his lips. "I know how hard this day's been for you," he murmured. (kiss) "Why don't I... (kiss) help you unwind? (kiss) Relax?"

It wasn't the kissing that excited Lewis but the feel of his lover's hands pulling up his T-shirt. He broke away, looking into blue eyes. "Here?"

Leslie smiled widely. "Why not? Since you're too tired to move."

Lewis smiled warmly. He easily slipped off Leslie's unbuttoned shirt and began that night's love making.

Chapter List
©Ruth Amy Louise Hüneke 2008