M/m sex, discipline, spanking. If the idea of a discipline relationship between consenting adult males offends you, so will this story.
ELIZABETH MARSHALL STORIES
"Easy, easy, it's only a dream, shh, it's all right, I've got you..." Richard shook Silas gently. "Wake up, Si, it's not real. Shh..."
"You sure?" Silas's voice was raspy. He could tell from the raw feeling in his throat that he had been screaming.
"I'm sure. Shh, that's it, come here now..." Richard tried to ease Silas against him, but Silas stiffened.
"I always hated that part," Silas said. "Going to him after he hurt me. So fucking humiliating."
"I know, Silas, I know." Richard let go and Silas flopped angrily face down on the mattress.
"I hate you too, you know." Silas sounded sleepy.
"I know, Si." Richard's voice was full of love. "But you don't, really." He rubbed Silas's back in slow, heavy circles.
"Shh… Let me help you, Silas." Richard continued his massage; felt Silas soften into sleep. He smoothed Silas's hair. Turned over, closed his eyes and slept himself.
The radio alarm clock, turned up loud, woke Richard from a deep sleep. He listened to the scratchy sound of the oldies station he loved. Shook his head as Silas burrowed deeper into his pillow, trying determinedly to block out the morning.
"How late did you come to bed, anyway?" Richard asked, stroking Silas's stubbled cheek gently.
"Not so late, Rich," Silas mumbled.
"How late is 'not so'?" Richard asked.
"Two-three," Silas said unwillingly.
"Silas!" Richard sighed. "You're going to be tired today," he said matter-of-factly.
"Whatever. Just let me sleep." Silas turned his head away.
"You had a nightmare last night, a bad one," Richard said. "Do you remember?"
"They're all the same. I'm an asshole," Silas said. "And I hate you."
"Enough, Silas. That's the last time I want to hear that today, please."
"I'm an asshole. I HATE you." Silas was fully awake. He licked his lips. "Make me shut up. I dare you."
Richard rolled on top of Silas, effectively pinning him to the mattress, and kissed him. Silas tried to turn his head away, but Richard refused to allow it. Insistently Richard opened Silas's mouth with his tongue, deepening the kiss until Silas softened with a sigh and allowed Richard to explore his mouth freely. Both men were fully hard when Richard let Silas breathe again.
"Oh yeah," Silas exhaled. "Oh yeah."
Richard nudged Silas's thighs apart with his knee, slid down the mattress, stripping Silas's briefs as he went. Spread Silas's buttocks, pressed his legs back.
Silas squirmed, moaning, as Richard licked at him, lost in the sensation, loving the feeling of Richard's tongue on him and anticipating the pleasure to come.
Satisfied that Silas was ready, Richard reached for the uncapped tube on the nightstand, squeezed a generous quantity of lube in his hand and slicked his cock. Moving forward, he pressed into Silas.
Silas breathed deeply, willing himself to accommodate his lover, welcoming the familiar feel of his hefty cock, accepting the transient discomfort of being entered.
Richard waited until he felt Silas reach for his own cock and begin to stroke it before thrusting slowly inside his lover.
Both men came quickly. Silas snuggled into Richard, panting, enjoying the quick rise and fall of his lover's chest as Richard caught his breath.
"Love you." Silas barely stirred as Richard pulled the covers over him.
Richard finished his coffee, dialed into his office voicemail and retrieved his messages. One cancellation, one request to reschedule a consultation, one call from the parent of a patient.
"Silas, I'm going. I want you to do one thing for me?"
"What?" Silas snarled.
"Let me sleep. I don't feel good, Richard, I really don't."
Richard checked his watch. He could afford another hour.
"Up, babe. Shower. Now, please." He twitched the covers out of Silas's reach.
"Because I say so. Move, babe." Richard turned the radio up, knowing how Silas disliked the tinny sound it acquired at that volume. Nothing like a subtle irritant to light a fire under his lover.
Moaning, Silas threw his legs over the side of the bed, shook himself out and headed for the bathroom. Richard heard the hard, strong stream of his lover pissing. The toilet flushing, the shower starting. He rapped sharply on the bathroom door.
"In the shower, Silas," Richard said. He listened to the tempo of the water change as it sluiced over flesh as well as tile. Smiled as Silas began to sing, off key as always, mangling lyrics and melody alike. Whatever else he was, Silas was no musician.
"Maybe I'll go back to bed," Silas said, emerging towel-clad from the bathroom.
"Maybe you won't," Richard said, fishing clean underwear and socks out of Silas's dresser and tossing them on the bed. He added a tee shirt and jeans. "Get dressed please."
"I don't feel--" Silas looked at Richard. "Help me." He batted his impossibly long eyelashes.
"Oh no," Richard laughed. "I am not 'helping' you back into bed, young man. You can wait for it like the rest of the world."
Silas scowled into the mirror and began to get dressed. As always, the morning after one of his nightmares was hard.
Silas tried not to remember his dream. Silas tried not to remember his life.
Tried not to remember how high his hopes. Tried not to remember how poor his choices.
Tried not to remember how it had hurt. Tried not to remember how it had ended.
"Silas, where are you?" Richard watched Silas, concerned.
"Fuck!" Silas started.
"Shh…" Richard said reflexively. "You're all right. It's not a big deal, Si, you just got...absorbed." Silas in this mood needed reassurance, not a reminder of how much his blank eyes and slowed movements worried Richard.
There was a mixture of uncertainty and trust in the way Silas said his name that made Richard glad that he had tarried with his needy lover.
"Fuck me?" Silas looked at Richard longingly.
"Tonight," Richard said. He hugged Silas, kissing him hard.
"I hate when you leave me." Silas was miserable. "Don't leave me."
Richard tightened his hug, kissed Silas again, sucking hard at the tender flesh between jaw and neck, leaving a visible mark. Rubbed his thumb over the red welt.
"Mine. I expect you to keep moving, Si, you've got things you need to do today."
"Yeah." Silas rubbed the tender place on the side of his neck.
"I'll be home as early as I can." Richard kissed Silas again.
Silas waited until he heard Richard's car pull away before stripping off his jeans and getting back into bed. He tucked his face into Richard's pillow, seeking the comfort of his lover's scent, and closed his eyes.
Richard was en route to the hospital when his beeper sounded.
Silas slept through his alarm, stirring only to slap it into silence and burrow deeper under the covers, away from the light. Noon came and went and Silas remained in bed, dozing fitfully.
Jacket off, tie already loosened, Richard stepped out of his car. Silas's car was in the driveway, exactly where it had been that morning. Richard sighed; at the moment Silas was the least of his problems.
Silas roused as Richard walked into their bedroom. Shit. He hadn't expected to be caught out.
"What time is it? What are you doing here, Richard?"
"I came home early, Silas," Richard asked mildly, opening his closet and hanging up his suit jacket.
"It's not my fault, Richard," Silas said plaintively. "I didn't feel good."
"I see," Richard said without heat.
"Richard? What's wrong?" Silas was suddenly very awake, aware of something unusual in Richard's voice and demeanor.
"I lost a patient this morning, Silas," Richard said. "One of my anorexic girls."
Silas took a deep breath.
"Oh, Richard! I'm so sorry."
"Yeah." Richard sat down on the edge of the bed.
"Come here?" Silas asked.
"Yeah." Richard lay down.
Silas curled alongside him. Richard petted Silas's flank gently.
Richard draped his arm over his eyes and sighed deeply.
"Tell me? About what happened?" Silas rested his head on Richard's chest, rubbed his cheek against Richard's jaw.
"Cardiac arrest. They tried to defibrillate her but she was gone." Richard's voice broke. "She was seventeen, Si. "
Silas cuddled closer, letting Richard bury his face in his thick mop of hair. Felt Richard tremble as he gave way to tears.
"Richard," Silas said. "You did a lot for her. I know you did."
"Seventeen. She was a baby, Silas," Richard said. "Oh God, she had so much ahead of her. I thought she was going to be all right."
"You did your best," Silas said. "I love you, Richard. You did the best you could."
"It wasn't enough. I had to tell her mother..." Richard's voice trailed off.
"I'm so sorry," Silas said, rolling onto his side and propping himself on his elbow. He stroked Richard's cheek, his hand gentle. Kissed Richard softly. "You did the best you could."
"I really thought she was going to be all right," Richard repeated. "She was gaining weight. She was working in therapy. She had her whole life ahead of her."
Silas swung his legs over the side of the bed.
"You want some tea? I'll make you some tea, okay?"
"No, Silas, I'm not thirsty. Just stay with me awhile, all right?"
"Sure." Silas lay back down. Richard enfolded him in a tight hug.
"You're okay, Silas, aren't you? You're all right?" Richard asked. "Silas, am I doing right by you?"
"Is this about your patient?" Silas asked in return.
"I'm the psychiatrist, not you," Richard said ruefully. "Answer my questions please."
"I'm fine, Richard. Or at least no worse than usual," Silas said. "Don't worry about me. I'm sorry." He gestured helplessly at the bed. "I should have gotten up…"
"I didn't know about this," Silas said defensively. "I would have tried harder!"
"Shh...." Richard stroked his hair. "I know, Si."
"What happens now?" Silas asked.
"The hospital investigates. They go over everything, see if we---see if I---missed anything. There might be a lawsuit, but I doubt it. There's nothing there. It's just an awful illness."
"I thought...Richard, they don't just get thin?" Silas asked curiously.
"No. Anorexia has the highest rate of fatalities of any psychiatric illness." Richard took refuge in the comfort of fact.
"Huh. I didn't know that," Silas said, curling closer to Richard. "Richard, can I get you anything? Do anything?" Silas wanted very much to help.
"Just stay with me, okay? I just want to hold you. Oh, Silas..." Richard's voice broke. "She was so young. She had so much going for her. And telling her mother..."
"Shit," Silas said expressively.
"She kept asking if it were her fault." Richard sighed.
"Oh god, Richard, that must have been bad." Silas could only imagine how bad. "I'm sorry."
"I know you are." Richard stroked Silas, taking refuge in the soft feel of his hair, the warmth of his trust. The life in him.
"You helped me," Silas said, casting about for a way to comfort Richard. " You saved me."
"Silas." Richard hugged his lover. "Shhh..." He didn't want to talk. He wanted the silent comfort of his lover's presence, nothing more.
Silas seemed to sense what Richard needed from him. He lay where Richard had settled him and was quiet.
It might have been minutes, it might have been hours, for any awareness the two men had of the passage of time. They drifted together in the closeness of mingled breath and warmth only lovers who know each other deeply share.
"What do you want to do about dinner, Richard?" Silas asked. "Should I cook? Would you rather go out? What do you feel like, Richard?"
"Let's take a ride," Richard said. "I feel like driving."
Silas was not surprised. Richard loved to drive.
"You want to shower? You want anything else first?" Silas ran his hand over Richard's groin lightly, testing.
"I'm good. I'm just going to check my messages. You want to shower?"
"Nah, I went right back to bed after this morning's," Silas said ruefully. "I'm clean. I'll just pull on some clothes."
"All right." Richard swung his legs over the side of the bed. "God, Silas. She was just a baby."
"Richard." Silas sat up behind his lover; rested his chin on his shoulder.
"I'm all right. I'll be right with you."
"Okay." Silas watched Richard walk away.
Not your fault, Silas thought protectively. You're good, Richard. You did everything you could.
Silas tugged on a fresh turtleneck. Eyed himself in the mirror. Shook out his nondescript brown hair, finger combing it to neatness.
"Silas, you ready?" Richard called.
"Right here," Silas responded, giving his head a final shake and traipsing downstairs.
"We'll eat somewhere on the road," Richard said as they got into his car. "That okay, Silas?"
"Sure, whatever you like," Silas said.
Richard headed northwest on the old parkway. The first few miles were ugly, tattered old colonials, interspersed with failed businesses and closed gas stations. Gradually the gaps between buildings widened and gave way to greenery, small trees and sparse fields. Finally, the road opened up, rolling fields and old stone walls to either side, farmhouses beyond.
Silas watched Richard's hands on the wheel. Sparse dark hair at the back of his wrists. Bony knuckles. Close clipped nails.
Silas looked down at his own hands. Ink smudges. Bitten nails. A half-healed paper cut. I'm an asshole. The recriminations that were never far from his mind crept forward.
"I wouldn't mind some music," Richard said, hearing Silas's roughened breathing. Not wanting to have to talk. "Find us something good."
"I'm okay," Silas said. "I don't need music, Richard, really I'm fine."
"Take it easy then," Richard said. "There are caramels in the glove compartment if you're hungry."
"I'll take one, please," Richard said.
Silas unwrapped a caramel, passed it to Richard. Popped one in his own mouth as well, just as Richard had intended him to.
"This looks like it might be good," Richard said, turning into a graveled lot beside an old Victorian.
Richard took Silas's hand as they walked through the dark parking lot, releasing it discreetly as they approached the old inn's well-lit entranceway.
The dining room was dim and quiet. Richard and Silas took seats opposite each other. They studied the menu on the blackboard over the table.
"They're real." Silas fingered the flowers on the table.
Richard nudged his foot and Silas's hand stilled.
"A half carafe of the house red, please," Richard said to the approaching waiter. "I'll have the brook trout and the asparagus."
"I'll have the strip sirloin, baked potato, nothing on it, please." Silas ordered his favorite meal.
The breadbasket was placed between them, full and fragrant.
Silas looked at Richard and at his nod, took a roll.
"Do you want to talk about it?" Silas asked tentatively, buttering his bread.
"All right..." Silas's voice trailed off. He toyed with his roll, no longer hungry.
"Sorry, Si." Richard's fingers grazed the back of Silas's hand.
Silas cast about for other topics; came up empty.
Their meal arrived, obviating the need for further conversation.
Richard smiled as Silas fell on his steak with enthusiasm. The image of his lost patient, her eating rituals painstakingly documented in his session notes, flashed across his mind. He closed his eyes.
She had been doing so well. She had been talking to the unit's social worker, an immensely talented therapist with a rare gift for reaching even difficult patients. She had been gaining weight, ounce by hard-won ounce. Slow but steady progress. She had been doing so well.
"Richard?" Silas's voice brought Richard's attention back to the present. Silas was watching him anxiously, his blue eyes troubled.
"I'm all right," Richard said. "Enjoy your meal."
"Yes, Richard." Silas dropped his eyes and resumed eating mechanically.
"I'm sorry, Silas, I'm stressing you out and it's not your fault." Richard repressed a sigh. Silas was only trying to help.
"I wonder how old this place is?" Silas hazarded another question. He knew Richard liked architecture.
"Well, the moldings look original. They look like turn of the century, maybe earlier," Richard mused. "And the small paned windows, those…" Richard held forth on the history of glassmaking.
Whew. Silas allowed himself a tiny, secret preen. He was good.
Richard was aware of being seduced into conversation, but allowed himself the pleasure of distraction.
The conversation ambled from architecture to the region's social history. Silas knew how to draw Richard out and Richard welcomed the excuse to stop thinking. By the time coffee was served, Richard was restored to some semblance of himself and Silas was openly happy.
The drive home seemed much shorter than the drive up. Fog hugged the road's surface, curling wisps misting in the car's headlights. Silas's fingers strayed over Richard's thigh.
"When we get home." Richard removed Silas's hand gently.
Afterward Richard reflected ruefully that anyone who raised an eyebrow at his choice of partner had obviously no idea just how good Silas really was. He ran his hand over Silas's ass appreciatively.
"Want to do it again?" Silas rolled onto his back, his tease almost a giggle.
"Would that I were nineteen." Richard laughed back. "I love you, Silas. You're so good for me."
"I love you." Silas kissed Richard's shoulder, savoring the taste of his salted,
"Don't tickle!" Richard hooked his arm around Silas and tugged him over, pillowing Silas's head on his chest. "Mine. We're going to sleep now, Silas." He snuggled Silas close.
Silas surfaced, his own scream ringing in his ears.
"Shh, shh, you're all right, shh… Easy, easy, it's only a dream, shh, it's all right, I've got you..." Richard shook Silas. "Wake up, Si, it's not real. Shh..."
"You sure?" Silas's throat hurt. "It feels, it felt so real."
"I'm sure. Shh, that's it, come here now..." Richard repeated his soothing litany. He tried to ease Silas against him.
"Don't," Silas said. ""Stop that. Please."
"All right, Si." Richard let go.
"I hate you." The words hung between them like a tossed ball.
"I do not want to hear that again tonight," Richard said firmly.
"I didn't mean it!" Silas sounded stricken.
"I know, Silas, but I just don't have the energy to deal with it tonight."
"I'm sorry!" Silas butted his head against Richard's arm. "You can hold me if you like."
Touched, Richard resettled Silas against his chest. Hugged him tightly.
Silas stiffened. Richard released him instantly.
Silas rolled free.
"I love you, Silas." Richard watched Silas empathetically, making no attempt to touch him.
"I'm sorry," Silas said despairingly. He looked into Richard's tired face guiltily. "Spank me?"
"Spank you!" Richard shook his head, astonished. "And just why should I spank you, Silas?" Silas's reasoning eluded Richard.
"I fucked up my sleep cycle?" Silas said. "You could spank me for that."
"Your nightmares are not your fault," Richard said.
"If I got up when you told me, I wouldn't have them," Silas countered.
"It's not about placing blame," Richard said wearily. "There's going to be enough of that at the hospital for the next week. I don't have the energy for this, Silas."
"Spank me for that, then!" Silas said. "For being needy. Selfish. I know there's a reason for you to spank me. I just don't know what it is…" His voice trailed off.
"That's enough, Silas," Richard said.
"Make me stop!" Silas's voice rose.
"Silas, I'm tired. I just want to sleep." Richard looked at Silas. "Please?"
Silas took a deep breath. Looked, really looked, at Richard. At his careworn expression, at the lines in the corners of his eyes, at his weary mouth.
Silas tamped down his own ever-present guilt.
"Okay." Silas kissed Richard softly. Snuggled into him. "I'm sorry, Richard. I'm sorry I'm a pain. Hold me, Richard?"
"You're not a pain," Richard said. "You're just fine. You're just who I want." He spooned Silas to him, Silas's need eclipsing his own sadness. "Shh, shh…" Richard buried his nose in Silas's hair, his breathing slowing and deepening.
Silas's breathing matching Richard's, they drifted into innocent sleep.
Thank you, Hedeia, for your challenges and for your support. EM