When Jay returns to the party in the kitchen, the air is so thick with smoke he wouldn’t have to worry about looking flushed at all. No one pays attention as he slides on his chair next to Darren’s wheelchair, not even Darren, though Jay is sure he noticed a slight worsening of tension in Darren’s right arm, his fingers flexing unwillingly. Several joints are passed around and Jay feels himself relaxing with every pull, his head filling with cotton, his limbs becoming heavy and warm. Conversation has slowed down considerably.
“Are you still eating this?” It’s Chris’ neighbor from upstairs, Jay thinks, a tall lanky guy with short, frizzy hair, who Jay knows from previous parties.
Jay blinks through the haze and follows the outstretched finger to his own, forgotten plate with a few slices of cold pizza on it. “Uh, no, knock yourself out.”
Next to Jay, Darren pulls on a joint held by Chris and Jay notices then that he has never seen Darren smoke before. He wonders if Darren can smoke by himself and, observing Darren’s head jiggle in place and the fingers of his right hand clenching into a fist, Jay comes to the conclusion that he probably can’t. With the joint being relatively small and delicate to handle for everyone, especially with large hands like Darren’s, and his disability factored in, it seems impossible. It’s the thought of Darren’s hands that makes Jay’s cock twitch again, reminding him of its ever-present longing, that apparently can’t even be fully suppressed by weed. Imperceptibly, Jay wiggles on his chair, trying to find a position in which his pants feel less tight. Thankfully he doesn’t have to suffer for long.
“I’m heading out.” Darren’s voice is so low, probably Jay is the only person hearing it. Maybe the only one who was intended to hear.
“Me too,” Jay announces to his own surprise.
Chris’ head flies up from watching his lap where he was rolling a new joint. Apparently one more person at least was listening. “You’re kidding,” he protests weakly, eyes on Jay. “We’ve just started!” He doesn’t try to convince Darren to stay, everyone is used to him disappearing early on.
Jay shrugs and ignores Chris’ offended glare. “Training tomorrow.”
It’s not even a lie.
Still, Jay catches Darren’s eye before the other ducks his head and moves his hand to the joystick to steer the wheelchair back from the table. There was the unmistakable hint of a smile showing on Darren’s usually impassive face and Jay feels joy rush through his veins, pulsing faster than his own heart. Darren’s happy mood is visibly dissipating though when he starts maneuvering through the tight space to get to the exit. Chairs screech over the floor as people make space but it’s slow progress. Darren has to bark at a few who are already a bit too far gone to notice the wheelchair passing. Some pat Darren’s back on his way out or wave goodbye. He nods at them in passing, good hand occupied with the task of steering the power chair.
Quietly saying goodbye to everyone as well, Jay trots out of the kitchen directly behind Darren, but before they have crossed the corridor to get to the exit, Chris appears and dumbs a full plastic bag in Darren’s lap. “There you go, I noticed you like the one with anchovies.”
“Hey, is there any food left?” someone cries from the kitchen.
“Nope,” Chris yells back, winking at Darren.
“Uh…” Jay can see Darren is as surprised as Jay. Blinking confused, Darren watches the bag that is slowly sliding toward his knees with the little shakes in his legs, his left hand jerking forward uselessly. “Uh, could you…”
Acting on a reflex, Jay rescues the package before it can tumble to the floor and slips it in the bag strapped to the back of Darren’s wheelchair.
“Thanks,” Darren murmurs, to no one in particular.
The wind outside has picked up and the air feels like beginning autumn. Jay regrets not having brought a jacket and wraps his arms around his torso, falling into a jog alongside Darren’s humming wheelchair to keep warm. Although Darren doesn’t comment on the cold it seems to have an effect on his body, and it appears to grow worse with every minute they spend outside. The fingers of his right hand form a tight fist, pressed to his chest, and his upper body leans to the side and over the armrest a little, as if someone is trying to pull him out of the wheelchair.
“Damn it,” Darren growls as they near the train station a few blocks down from Chris’ apartment, the wheelchair jerking to a halt.
“Huh?” Jay almost runs into Darren’s wheelchair, his head held low against the wind, shoulders hunched up to his ears. “What’s wrong?”
Darren tries to straighten himself in the seat, pushing up from the armrest with his left hand, and jerks his head to the blinking display panel above the entrance to the train tracks. “Train’s been cancelled.”
“Oh.” Jay squints up at the columns of letters travelling over the screen, announcing some emergency or change of schedule. He realizes he has only a vague idea of where Darren lives and doesn’t know which train he usually takes. “When’s the next running?” His own apartment is in walking distance, but he estimates Darren has a ride of at least 30 minutes until he’ll be home.
“An hour,” Darren says after reading the quickly changing display for a few seconds. He sighs. “They have a waiting booth. Guess I’ll see you in a few w—”
“Or…” Jay thinks out loud, desperate not to part from Darren so quickly. “We could go to the corner bar over there. It’s supposed to have really good beer from a local brewery.” When Darren doesn’t react too enthusiastically, Jay backtracks. “But we don’t have to, I just thought maybe you’d want to… I don’t know, company waiting? I don’t mind, not really, if I get home in an hour or now, it doesn’t really matter, and I’ve been wanting to taste the beer here for ages but just never got around to it. But anyway, as I said, if you’d rather be alone that’s no—”
“Let’s go,” Darren interrupts Jay’s babbling and without making sure Jay follows, turns the wheelchair to a curb in the sidewalk to cross the empty street.
“Oh…” Jay stares at the back of the retreating power wheelchair for a second, actually surprised that Darren agreed, before hurrying across the street himself. “Cool,” he murmurs to himself.
The bar is crowded, but above all it’s warm and Jay relaxes the instant he crosses the threshold. Darren more or less gets stuck after trying to veer around a large group standing together with their glasses in hands and has to back up toward the entrance again. Jay straightens, trying to scan the room, looking slightly over Darren’s head. Most people are sitting on dark wooden chairs, elbows on huge beer barrels in front of them, all occupied. There are still a few seats at the bar itself, but one look tells Jay that the high barstools are no option for Darren. And although Darren is tall, the bar table would probably be on his eye level sitting in his wheelchair.
“Uh, sorry,” Jay says into Darren’s ear, leaning over to make himself heard over the noise of conversation and the tune of a lone guitarist on a small stage in the corner. “Didn’t know this was such a busy address. Um… I can get us beers and we’ll just drink them somewhere here?” He gestures to the less crowded entrance. Maybe a space opens up once they have their drinks.
When Darren doesn’t object, Jay makes his way to the bar to place their orders and then, when he receives their drinks after quite a while, picks up the two full glasses to join Darren near the entrance again. Darren doesn’t look very comfortable, stuck in the crowd. “Sorry,” Jay apologizes again. “Cheers.” Jay places Darren’s glass in Darren’s reaching hand, making sure the other has a good grip before releasing his hold.
The guy on the guitar isn’t half bad as it turns out and for a while they just listen with the others, occasionally joining into the cheering of the crowd or the applause, Jay at least for the last part. They only exchange a few words of conversation, with Jay leaning over to Darren. Darren rests his beer glass on his thighs whenever he can, though Jay senses he’d rather place it somewhere with less danger of it getting knocked over by spasms. But although Jay constantly scans the room, he doesn’t find a free table.
“There’s space over there.”
Jay’s eyes follow the direction Darren is looking at and indeed there is a group of unoccupied chairs around a table in the far corner behind the bar, hidden partly by a column which is why he didn’t notice it before.
“Great, we could sit there!” Jay exhales, relieved.
Darren shrugs. “You’d better claim the place for us. It’ll take me ages to get there.”
Thinking ahead, Jay takes Darren’s beer to carry it over and makes his way through the crowd ahead of Darren, who follows slower, maneuvering around the people and stairs. As Jay nears the empty table however, it becomes immediately clear that this corner of the bar used to be another stage. He’s still staring at the step up to the level where the table is situated when Darren pulls up next to him. “Huh.”
“I’m sorry,” Jay says, holding the beer glasses close to his body. “Doesn’t matter, we’ll find someplace else—”
“Just get up there.”
With an impatient jerk of his head, Darren directs Jay up the step. He scoots forward in his seat as if attempting to transfer, though there is no chair or anything else in his reach to grab onto.
“You might want to set these aside,” Darren remarks with a little snide in his voice, his eyes twinkling in the dim lighting.
Not catching on, Jay sputters and then follows Darren’s gaze to the glasses in his hands and hurries to place them on the empty table in his back. “How…”
Before Jay can finish the sentence, Darren has pulled himself into standing, swaying now in front of him, on the same eye level with Jay only due to the step between them. “Stay there.” Darren’s left hand grabs Jay’s arm above the elbow and Jay’s hands shoot out almost automatically to steady the tall guy around the hips. It’s like Darren hesitates and for a few seconds both men hold their breath, wide eyes on each other without blinking. Then Darren leans forward like a falling tree.
“Woah, okay.” It’s a bit more weight on Jay than he’d expected, Darren is almost fully relying on him from one moment to the other. His right foot knocks into the step a few times before clearing it, the left knee almost giving out under him as he tries to push himself up. In reflex, Jay steps under the weight, bracing Darren and manages to prevent a fall, but the strain in Jay’s back tells him he won’t be able to keep the other up for too long. He feels Darren’s quick breath on his cheeks, the grip around his arm is painfully strong and Darren’s body is so close Jay can feel it quivering against his own. With a grunt, Darren manages to join his right foot up on the stage next to his left, still leaning heavily on Jay.
“Chair.” It’s a word like a whip and Jay shoots out his left hand to fumble for a chair’s back and pull it closer, turning it so that the seat is facing Darren. Slowly, Darren pivots and sinks down on the wooden surface, facial expression betraying his relief, his legs trembling so violently Jay grabs his shoulders to steady him.
“Are you okay?” Knowing it’s not wise to ask, Jay still feels the need to make sure. “We really don’t need to stay here.” Okay, that was probably stupid to point out after they’ve just made the ascent up the step.
As was to be expected, Darren’s gaze is scathing, so Jay lifts his hands from him like he was burned. Darren straightens a little, which looks dangerous, and grabs the table in front of him to brace himself.
“Um, oh… okay…” Jay slowly retreats to his side of the table, still alert and ready to jump forward should Darren require assistance. “Damn,” he mumbles to himself as he sits down across from Darren and wipes sweat from his forehead. Without looking at the other, Jay crosses his legs to conceal his hard-on, trying to forget how Darren’s body felt pressed against his. Urgently, he grabs his glass to take a big gulp. “The beer is really good, though…”
“It better be,” Darren murmurs, but the corners of his mouth twitch into half a grin. He takes a few minutes to give his body time to calm down before attempting to direct his hand to his glass. Jay can’t help himself but watch as Darren drinks, Adam’s apple bobbing, with his left hand jerking mildly while his right is fumbling for the edge of the table without really finding purchase. Darren lets the glass sink and licks froth from his upper lip, slumping in the chair. His broad back makes the chair look small, and Jay notices it doesn’t seem to offer enough support to be comfortable, there’s no side protection like his wheelchair provides, no pillows like he uses on Jay’s couch. As a result, Darren seems to be in constant danger of sliding out of the chair.
“Go ahead.” Darren’s voice is low and a little hoarse. He sets the glass down on the table with a little more force behind it than probably intended, a few foaming drops landing on the table and Jay’s hand. Jay’s head flies up to look into Darren’s face, his cheeks start glowing and he’s momentarily lost for words.
Darren’s eyes are like deep, endless holes. “I know what you are thinking. There’s no one watching.” His right arm jerks away from his body and he reinstates his hold around the table’s edge, knees moving closer together. His long legs are awkwardly folded under the table, the soles not really connected with the floor.
“W-what?” Just imagining the thing that Darren is hinting at makes Jay’s cock jerk in his pants, growing painfully hard within seconds.
Darren leans over to Jay a little, talking in a lower voice now although it isn’t required. The next table is quite a distance away and there’s no one standing around in this area in the back. “Get yourself off,” he says slowly, working through a facial spasm that makes his teeth flash white in the dim light. “I know you’d like to. I know you need to.”
Heat rushes into Jay’s cheeks and between his legs, he can’t stop it and he can’t stop the hitch of his breath either. He bites his lips, trying to calm himself, ground himself in pain. Compressed in the cage of his pants, his cock twitches. It’s a completely different kind of pain and it makes his eyes water. He would have enjoyed it if it weren’t for the embarrassment he feels at knowing that Darren knows about his massive boner.
Sighing slightly, Darren places his elbow on the table. “If it helps, I’m enjoying seeing you like this,” he whispers almost. A glance toward Darren’s crotch tells Jay that Darren would probably like to take his hand to action, if it weren’t occupied with keeping him upright. Jay feels dizzy thinking about it.
Whimpering a little, Jay sneaks one trembling hand to the bulge in his pants, pressing his palm onto it. His eyes dart away from Darren to jitter around the room, fearful anyone could notice his situation. But no one is paying attention to them in their dark corner.
“No one is watching,” Darren repeats. “No one but me, that is. Go on…”
Jay swallows, his resistance dissolving, and starts kneading his cock through the fabric, gasping at the sensation. Darren’s eyes are on him, narrowed a little, and his lips are parted. As on cue, Darren’s legs start moving slightly, shudders running through them in intervals, as if he’s cold again. Following the overwhelming urge, Jay unzips his pants a little and slips a hand inside to wrap it around his begging cock, breath punching out of his chest as he jerks off with quick little motions, under the unwavering gaze of Darren. Still no one else seems to notice them in their corner and Jay feels a pearl of sweat run down his back, his hairs standing on edge with the fear of being caught.
“Yes, so pretty…” Darren murmurs, voice hoarse. He has slid lower in his seat, his left hand white-knuckled around the corner of the dirty table, his body quivering. Jay assumes he doesn’t dare to let go for fear of falling over with the next leg spasm. “That’s it, go on…”
Jay stuffs his palm into his mouth but it’s no use, the high-pitched moans escape as he feverishly slides his dry hand over his hot cock, his eyes on Darren who hangs onto him with his gaze and the table with his good hand, and the thought that someone might coincidentally look in their direction and see them, quickly catapults him to highest levels of arousal. “Fuck, fuck, I’m…”
“Are you going to come?” Darren’s eyes are half closed and there’s sweat collecting along the long curve of his nose. He’s trembling so heavily that the table wobbles with it. “Let me see it when you do, please…”
Jay whimpers again. “Yes, I’m… I’ll…” The surrounding narrows to just Darren on the table across from him, flushed and aroused himself because of watching Jay get off, and shaken up with spasms, and when Jay comes just a second later, it’s with a cry and shudder of his body that would be obvious to everyone in the room if not for the general crowdedness and noise. He feels a wet warm spot expand in his pants, probably staining them visibly from the outside as well but he doesn’t care, all he perceives is Darren in front of him, deep wrinkles in his face, lips tight but smiling through the pain. Jay doesn’t give himself time to recover, he leans over and reaches out his other hand to press it between Darren’s jerking legs, knowing Darren is so close he just needs a little push. Darren’s breath stops and then he groans, his hips thrusting forward weakly, the motion enough to almost make him slide from the edge of the chair, and then Jay feels the pulse of Darren’s huge cock through the fabric as it empties itself. Dampness registers under the pads of his fingers before he pulls his hand away again. Darren has stopped moving almost entirely, he is as good as collapsed over the table with his right fist buried under him, shoulders heaving with heavy breaths.
It’s obvious then that Darren won’t take the next train. It’s a long time before any of them moves again, or speaks, and then it’s just to confirm that the other is okay. They listen to the music for a while, gathering strength, drink one more beer very slowly, before Darren seems finally stable enough to get down into his waiting wheelchair again. Jay is there to help Darren again but it turns out, a step down is easier than up.
There are in fact accessible restrooms in the bar, not easily reachable through the crowd but both of them feel the need to clean themselves if possible, and so it’s very late in the night when they exit the bar and step outside on the street. Jay feels a fire inside of him and it’s warm enough to ward off the fierce cold. They follow the road in a slow pace.
“Did you ever try anal?” Darren asks all of a sudden, breaking the silence. His voice is levelled, matter-of-fact.
Jay startles out of his happy-drowsy state and coughs a little before answering. He hopes the flush in his cheeks isn’t visible under the dim street lights. “Me? No.” When Darren doesn’t say anything more, Jay asks: “You?”
“Hmm…” Darren makes, his face turned away toward the street. Jay thinks that’s a yes. “Not by myself, obviously. But yes. I had help,” Darren adds when Jay continues watching him from the side, questioningly.
“Ah… huh.” Jay tucks his hands in his pockets and decides not to poke around, whoever helped Darren, a friend, a lover, a hooker, it’s not relevant. But the image of Darren getting finger-fucked, or actually fucked, kinda messes with his brain. He feels his spent cock twitch in his pants, very weakly.
“Aren’t you curious?” Darren asks.
Jay blinks. “What?”
Darren chuckles. “What it’d be like?”
“Anal?” Jay asks, trying to confirm they are still on the same conversational topic as well as buying himself time. “No, I don’t… I don’t know, guess it’s—”
“What gay guys do and you aren’t gay?”
Jay can hear the smirk in Darren’s tone but there’s also a warning. “Yeah… No. I mean…” Jay scrambles for words, desperately wishing his brain would kick-start faster from hibernation mode. “I’m not completely opposed to it, I guess. Uh… maybe?”
Jay scratches the back of his head. “Well, if I find a girl who’s into pegging, you know… I might give it a try.”
“Ah.” Darren hunches his shoulders and doesn’t say more.
Jay can’t fight the feeling that he missed something, but he’s too drowsy to connect his thoughts, so they walk in silence until they arrive at the train station.
“So… when’s the next train?”
“What?” Jay turns to Darren, frowning.
Darren shrugs. “They won’t continue until the morning. I’ll take a taxi, there usually are plenty around the station.” He sounds tired, the exertion of this night finally taking its toll.
Jay doesn’t need to begin calculating in his head to know that a taxi will cost Darren half a fortune. “No way,” he says, with a determination that surprises himself. “You’re staying at my place.”
“Huh,” Darren makes and closes his eyes shortly in irritation. “I told you—”
“So what?” Jay challenges, tiredness, alcohol and endorphins making him bold. “You can’t piss in a bottle? Also, I make a mean French toast.”
Darren actually chuckles at that. Maybe he’s drunker than Jay thought, or much more exhausted, Jay would have thought he’d be harder to convince. But then Darren sighs, stares at a point over his jumping knees for a moment, and then says: “In this case I can’t say no, can I?”