Conversations With Myself

A Novel by Altimexis

The Whispers of Time
 
Chris
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Book Three • Chapter 6 — From Russia with Love

January 2005 • Chris-38

The despair that had a grip on my heart was almost more than I could bear. A week had passed since Andy’s disappearance and yet we were no closer to knowing what had happened to him than we were the morning I woke up to find he’d been taken from me. Only later did I realize he’d been abducted on Christmas morning.

Frank flew down immediately upon hearing the news and we stayed in a fleabag motel outside the park while the investigation continued. Once the crime scene had been fully examined and a sweep of the area completed, there was nothing to be accomplished by staying in the area. The use of a false passport at the Mexican border along with the keen eyes of a border agent who remembered having seen Andy, pretty much confirmed that he’d been ushered out of the country. With no reason to stay, Frank and I returned to Alameda to welcome the New Year quietly.

The one bright spot, if it could be called one, was that the news media had yet to get wind of the story. Andy’s disappearance should have been on the front page of the New York Times. Hell, a teenage boy vanishing without a trace while on a backpacking trip with his dad? That would have been front-page news in itself, even without the hostage incident, and that I was a ‘nuclear’ scientist at Livermore. Throw in the Russian connection and this had all the makings of a major media frenzy. Truly, this was an international incident. Kidnapping an American citizen on American soil was the stuff that wars are made of. State-sponsored kidnapping — taking a government official’s child as a means of extorting state secrets — could have consequences far beyond OTT.

It was precisely because of OTT that President Kerry was keeping a lid on media coverage of the incident. Fortunately, we were hiking in a little-known national park at an unusual time of the year, in a remote part of California. By keeping quiet about it, we were buying some time to allow the Soviets a chance to contemplate the likely consequences of their action. Once the kidnapping went public, the U.S. would have to take action. At the minimum, there would be harsh economic sanctions, but war was a very real possibility.

The lack of media scrutiny also allowed us the breathing room needed to seek a negotiated resolution. The trouble was that the Russians were adamantly denying that they had Andy, or even knew who he was. However, the evidence we had against them was overwhelming. Not only did we have the boot prints that were Russian military, but the partial fingerprint we’d retrieved was from a known Russian national. President Kerry had been in contact with his counterpart in the Kremlin and it was his hope that with persistence and patience, we would get Andy back. There was a good possibility there would be concessions on our part too, but getting Andy out of Russia was an absolute priority.

<<<<<<<<·>>>>>>>>

“Happy New Year, Marion,” Vladimir greeted the professor, his companion, with a kiss on the lips. Although living in isolation in their remote dacha, there were no New Year’s parties to attend, nevertheless they’d stayed up late, drinking and dancing until well after midnight, then made love until it was nearly dawn.

“What a lovely way to wake up,” Professor Dawson exclaimed as he stretched his arms over his head and extracted his not-so-youthful, naked body from the bed they shared. At 29, Vladimir still had the boyish good looks he’d had at sixteen, when he and the professor first became lovers. He’d filled out a bit and was more muscular, but his face still spoke of youthful vitality, which Marion Dawson appreciated. Although he still missed his David tremendously, Vladimir had made his defection worthwhile, if nothing else for the love he now shared with this boy — this young man.

“So are you ready for your New Years fuck?” Vladimir asked as he threw off the covers and spread his legs in the air.

“What do you call what we did all night?” The professor asked.

“That was just the warm-up for today,” the young man answered as he initiated another passionate kiss.

“Hold that thought until after I get back from my morning piss,” the professor responded, and then added, “and this time, why don’t you be on top.” Vladimir’s smile lit up the room as Professor Dawson walked the short distance to the bathroom and relieved himself. Vladimir soon followed, and then they made love for what seemed like hours, until the doorbell rang.

A ringing doorbell was never a good thing. They had very few neighbors and those with whom they shared their exile were there for a reason, and no one really wanted to know the specifics. Knowing more than one should was never a good thing in the USSR.

Few Westerners could fathom the nature of common existence in the Soviet Union. Housing in particular was in short supply, with most people living in tiny, crowded apartments, often with a toilet down the hall that was shared by the occupants of the floor. Shared kitchens were common and, in more destitute situations, even unrelated families had to share an apartment together. The apartments themselves were immaculate, but common areas such as hallways and stairwells were usually filthy and poorly lit if at all. It was accepted that it was each resident’s responsibility to take care of their own apartment, but the common area was always someone else’s responsibility. Unfortunately, money hadn’t been budgeted for ‘someone else’ to clean the common areas for years.

In spite of the crowded living conditions, nearly everyone had access to a place in the country. The Soviet territory is vast and much of it sparsely populated, so there was plenty of room for the private gardens that so many Soviet citizens kept for themselves and their families. Although it was mostly the party members that owned their own dachas in the countryside, the abundance of land and raw materials meant that most families could afford to build one if they did the work themselves. Even if not, they could afford to share or rent one. These dachas were very basic — sometimes little more than a log cabin with an outhouse and no running water — but they offered privacy and a chance to get away from the crowded conditions in the major cities. For party members and those with resources, however, they could be quite lavish, at least by Soviet standards.

If Professor Dawson had been considered a political prisoner, he would have been housed in a remote area in Siberia, in less than hospitable conditions, as has been the case since the days of the czars. A high-value asset such as the professor, on the other hand, even though his defection wasn’t entirely voluntary, demanded the utmost deference to his physical and mental well-being. That meant housing that was nicer than that afforded most party officials. Although he’d been cooperative when it came to helping Soviet scientists fabricate advanced devices previously beyond their capabilities, as far as the KGB was concerned, he had failed to deliver on his promise to deliver a fully functional laboratory for TTT, and for that he could never be allowed a return to regular society. 

That the failure to deliver what he’d promised was entirely the fault of the Soviets was immaterial. Obviously, the professor was holding back and for that, he had to be punished. Had it not been for the intervention of an influential Soviet scientist, he might well have ended up in a Siberian gulag. Instead he was given a luxurious dacha in a remote region of the Russian Urals.

But to Marion Dawson, it seemed very much like what it was — a prison. It could be considered little else — just a spacious dacha with very few neighbors, located miles from the nearest town or village. By Western standards, it wasn’t all that spacious either. Built on an A-frame, it had a large single bedroom and storage area upstairs, an open area that served as a combined living room, dining room and study downstairs, and a small kitchen and laundry area. The bathroom was small, with a separate room for the only toilet in the house. The one nod to luxury was an outdoor balcony with a hot tub — a must in Russian culture.

However, he was always under the watchful eyes of the KGB, and so the sound of a doorbell ringing on New Years Day in this remote region of the Russian forest could not be a good thing.

Reluctantly, the professor and Vladimir each threw on a terry bathrobe and the professor went to the door. As luxurious as his year-round dacha might be, he didn’t have a peephole in his front door. Apparently security wasn’t something he was entitled to worry about — not with the KGB there to ‘protect’ him.

Throwing open the door and feeling the intense cold air from outside, he was greeted by the sight of Staas, one of the agents who was responsible for his oversight, and by a tall, teenage boy who bore a striking resemblance to Chris Michaels, a man he hadn’t seen in years.

It was the boy who responded first, in a young, adolescent voice as he reached forward to shake the professor’s hand. “Professor Dawson, oh my God. I never in a million years thought I’d get to meet you. I recognize you from a picture my dad once showed me. ’Course I never expected to be in Russia either,” the boy prattled on. “I was on a camping trip with my dad in Joshua Tree National Park. That place is awesome, even in the middle of winter. Anyway, I went to sleep while talking to Dad about the improbability of intelligent life forming in the Universe and about the nature of the Big Bang, only it wasn’t really a big bang at all. It was more like the collapse of space into a singularity until the speed of light collapsed, giving the appearance of an expanding universe. But anyway, we were talking about life and shit, and the next thing I knew, I was riding in the back of a truck with nothing but a blanket covering me.

“Anyway, when they realized I was awake, they sprayed me with something and I guess it put me to sleep. Next thing I know, I was bein’ loaded onto a plane and, finally, they gave me some clothes. So no one would tell me what was going on and even the ones who I knew spoke English wouldn’t speak to me. I recognized that everyone was speaking Russian. Didn’t tell them that in high school, I’ve been taking Russian for over two years now.

“So from what I overheard, I guess they tracked us to the Park through someone named Victor. I guess he’s a spy or a double agent or something. So they used some of that spray stuff to knock us out, but then they realized that Dad still had an ankle bracelet. Ever since the Iranian hostage thing, when they discovered Dad had a secret lab in our basement, he’s had to wear that bracelet. I guess the Feds can track those bracelets with satellites, anywhere in the world, so it didn’t take the Russian guys long to figure out that the only way to take Dad would’ve been to chop off his foot, but they didn’t have the instruments to do it properly and, besides, some of these bracelets can detect removal by amputation and send out a silent alarm, and I guess they thought Dad’s bracelet looked sophisticated enough to be one of those.

“So instead they decided to take me. They figured they could use me to get to Dad and get him to do what they want without actually kidnapping him. So they kidnapped me instead. But what they don’t realize is that even if they threaten to kill me, they won’t get anything out of Dad. We talked a lot about this after the Iran hostage thing and Dad knows I wouldn’t forgive him if he tried to save me by hurting America. He knows I’m prepared to die for my country…”

Then realizing how he was just blathering on about stuff he definitely shouldn’t have been telling within earshot of a Russian agent, he apologized. “I’m sorry, Professor Dawson. I tend to chatter when I’m really nervous. I’m generally not like this. I’m not like this at all. Forgive me for not introducing myself in the first place, but my name’s Andy. I’m Andy Michaels, Chris Michaels’ son.”

“Andy,” the professor began. “I knew who you were the moment the door opened. I’ve heard so much about you, although I knew your father primarily when he was your age, and a little bit older.

“I’m sorry we’re meeting like this under these circumstances. Neither one of us came here voluntarily, although the circumstances of my so-called defection were not nearly so clandestine as yours. The threats against my students, including your dad, were sufficiently real that I knew a lot of boys would suffer if I didn’t cooperate with the Russians. I assumed that if I cooperated, I could at least keep the Russians from doing anything that would cause serious harm to the future, but that turned out to be a moot point anyway. The main thing was that I couldn’t stand to see my boys harmed.”

Then realizing that he himself was blathering on, the professor added, “Please forgive me my manners.” Then stepping aside, he said, “Why don’t you come inside. I suspect you’re going to be staying here a while.” Turning toward Vladimir, he added, “This is my house boy, Vladimir, although he’s not much of a boy anymore.”

Speaking up for the first time, the man accompanying Andy, Staas, said, “Mr. Michaels will be living with you here permanently, Dr. Dawson. He is to be Vladimir’s replacement.”

With a look of horror in his eyes, the professor said, “No, no, I don’t need or want a replacement for Vladimir. Vladimir and I love each other. Andy is just a boy. I don’t want to have sex with boys. It would be wrong. He is way too young for me, and as I recall, he’s straight, too. I could never have sex with him.”

Then turning to Andy, he continued, “In spite of what you might have heard, I’m gay, but I’m not a pedophile. I like to associate with teenage boys because I like to teach and the American school system does such a poor job of teaching physics to our youth. Until recently, it was only boys that were interested in my lessons, but now there are girls too and, up until I left, I enjoyed teaching them no less than the boys.”

Turning back and facing Staas, he concluded, “You see, Andy cannot replace Vladimir, who is much more than a house boy to me. Vladimir is the man I love, and I am his mate too…”

Getting right in front of the professor, Vladimir interrupted, “It is OK, Professor Dawson. I always knew this day would come. I made you Happy, no? I gave you a good time and I even enjoyed talking to you, in spite of our differing interests.” The professor was shocked. He’d always thought Vladimir was just as interested in their discussions as he was. He still couldn’t see that all along, it had been nothing more than an act. Vladimir was simply a child prostitute who had grown into manhood with him. Even the intellectualism was an act, drawn from an extensive and rigorous education.

“Thanks to you,” Vladimir went on, ”I am now well-prepared for field work. Now I can go to a posting anywhere in the world and serve my country.” Finally it dawned on the professor that Vladimir had been groomed to be a spy, and he’d been a part of the training! Vladimir had the looks, the raw sexuality and the sharp mind to make himself attractive to just about any guy, or woman, in the world. And thanks to their time together, Vladimir was well-experienced in relating to Americans. He was a valuable Soviet intelligence asset.

“I’ll go get dressed and pack my things, and then I’ll go and you can start to get to know your new house boy,” Vladimir said as his final words of parting. He left all of his books, as apparently he no longer had a need for them. To him they were just props. With scarcely more that a couple of suitcases full of clothes and personal belongings, he merely nodded his head and walked out the door.

After Staas and Vladimir left, it was just the professor and the boy. The professor knew the KGB had plans for the boy — horrific plans to use him to get to Chris Michaels. The boy expected as much, but planned to make the best of a terrible situation.

“I know you probably have a lot you want to say, Andy,” Marion Dawson began, “but you have to keep in mind that in the Soviet Union, everywhere there are eyes and ears, and this house is no exception. I would advise you not to talk about your father’s work while staying here… not that anyone would expect you to know anything about it at your young age.

“As you can see, the house is built on an A-frame, with most of the facilities located on the main floor.” Showing Andy around as he went, the professor continued, “Down here we have a great room where we tend to spend most of our time. There’s no TV I’m afraid, but the stereo system is outstanding and there is an extensive collection of vinyl records. I don’t suppose they use them anymore in the States, but the records we have are among the best recordings ever made… if you enjoy classical music.

“Actually, I do,” Andy interjected. “I particularly like the Russian composers too.”

“There’s an extensive library with about half the books in English and half in Russian, many of them not available to ordinary Soviet citizens.”

The professor was surprised when the boy walked up to one of the bookshelves and started perusing the collection, reading the titles and authors on the spines until he found something of interest. Pulling out a fairly large, leather-bound volume, he opened it and started rifling through the pages. “The Collected Works of Dostoyevsky,” the boy translated. “I read The Brothers Karamazov when I was nine and Crime and Punishment when I was ten. I always wanted to read them in the original Russian.”

“Pretty advanced reading for someone so young,” the professor noted. “Were you mature enough to understand them back then? There are so many subtleties in Dostoyevsky’s writing... so many allegorical references that are often lost on Americans.”

“That’s one of the main reasons I’d like to read this now, and in Russian,” he answered. “It’ll be a great chance to learn about Russian history and Russian culture. I had no trouble reading the English language translations at nine. Hell, I taught myself how to read when I was three. But you’re right. Understanding an author like Dostoyevsky requires maturity, something my dad says I have yet to acquire,” the boy added as he looked at the professor with a mischievous grin. He re-shelved the classic volume in the precise spot from which he’d taken it.

Walking toward the large windows that dominated the entire southern expanse of the dacha, the professor continued the tour. “The entire end of the house is all glass and because it faces south, the sun streams in most of the day in the winter, keeping us warm… sometimes a little too warm. We get up early with the sun, as there are no window coverings. You can see the hot tub outside, which is very welcome during the long winter months. Keep in mind that virtually the entire inside of the house can be seen from outside through these windows, and that sound can be picked up from miles away with the aid of a laser beam reflected off of vibrating glass.”

Walking back toward the north end of the dacha, the professor continued, “Back here on one side is the only bathroom, which is just about the only place with privacy. There is a separate ‘water closet’ for the toilet, in the traditional European style. On the other side is an open kitchen with a washer and dryer for doing the laundry. You cannot imagine how much of a luxury a dryer is in the USSR. Unfortunately it and the washer are Russian-made and they break down quite often. Getting a repairman out here can take six months or more, so we do most of the repairs ourselves. If we need a part, it means washing our clothes by hand or hanging them up to dry, for months at a time,” he added with a laugh.

But then it dawned on the professor that the boy didn’t have any luggage. “Andy, where is your luggage? Where are your clothes?”

With a sheepish smile, the boy said, “They didn’t exactly take me shopping when they abducted me. I was taken, naked, from our camp site and the only clothes they gave me are what I’m wearing now, and this parka,” he added as he removed the parka, revealing nothing more than a threadbare, tight-fitting pair of jeans, and flip-flops.

Shaken and looking the boy up and down the professor realized that virtually nothing of his own clothes would fit. The boy was actually quite a few inches taller than he was, with a waist size less than two-thirds of his own. The professor almost smiled as he imagined the boy in a shirt that hung loose on him, but with sleeves that only came down to just below his elbows, and with pants that only came down to mid-calf, but so loose that even with the belt tied, they would keep falling off. And the professor’s underwear would be useless. No, they would have to obtain clothing for the boy, but this was the USSR, where nothing happened quickly. It would be months before anyone even took a look at his request for clothes for the boy, who didn’t even have a shirt or a pair of socks, and the long winter was still ahead of them.

Sighing, the professor led the way up a spiral staircase to the second floor, which was one big room. Closet rods extended along both sides, providing the only place to hang clothes, and stacks of boxes could be seen behind the clothes, providing storage for basic necessities. Built-in drawers adorned the entire north wall, and a king-size bed dominated the center of the room. As the professor had feared, Vladimir had taken all his clothing with him, leaving nothing that could be used for the boy.

“I’m sorry, Andy, but this is the only bedroom in the house and the only bed. I can request a second bed, but it could take years to get one. In the meantime, we could take turns sleeping on the sofa downstairs.”

Although the professor was saying otherwise, the look of hunger in his eyes gave him away. The boy himself had no issues when it came to sharing a bed with a gay man. He expected that they would use the bed for sleep primarily, although it was evident that the professor and Vladimir had engaged in sexual activities just that morning. The smell of sex was heavy in the air and to a sex-starved teenager, the effect was overwhelming. The boy wasn’t worried about unwanted advances from the professor, particularly when he wasn’t sure those advances would be unwanted.

Without giving much thought to the implications, the boy responded, “That’s OK, Professor Dawson, or perhaps since I’m prolly gonna be here a while, maybe I should call you Marion. Anyway, the bed’s plenty big enough for the both of us. Besides, I bet the winter nights can get mighty cold here. I may not be Vladimir, but we can still keep each other warm.”

“Andy, you’re just a boy, and you’re straight,” the professor reiterated. “If you’re insinuating what I think you are, I can’t have sex with you. I’m 63 years old. Why would you want to have sex with me in the first place?”

The boy got a wry smile on his face as he gave some thought to the idea of having sex with the professor. The fact of the matter was that the boy had been pleasuring himself since the second grade, but ever since the hostage incident and the move to Alameda, girls — and even some boys — had been practically throwing themselves at him.

The boy took pride in always thinking with his ‘big head’ and not his little one, but he was a teenage boy with hormones and more than a passing interest in sex. Presented with ample opportunity, over the course of the past few months he’d lost track of the number of girls and boys with whom he’d hooked up. Although nothing in the world felt better than being inside a girl, much to his surprise, he’d found that the feeling of being inside a boy, or of a boy being inside him, or even of going down on a boy, truly was amazing. It was evident to the boy that he was more than a little bisexual and, truthfully, he had no problem with that. The professor might not be much to look at, but he wasn’t bad looking either and he was available.

Considering the lack of other options, the boy answered, “It’s not a big deal. I’m a sex-starved teenager and although you may be old, you obviously still have sex,” Andy said as he gestured toward the unmade bed, causing the professor to color up. “Yeah, I’m straight, but I’ve fooled around with my friends and I like it a lot. My dad is gay, but he managed to knock up a girl, which is why I’m here in the first place. Gay, straight, young, old… none of it matters. I hate to be blunt, but when it comes to sex, a dick is a dick, a mouth is a mouth and we’re all assholes with assholes,” he concluded with a smirk.

With an exasperated sigh, the professor responded, “You sure you’re only fifteen?”

“Going on fifty, as my dad likes to say. I’m not sayin’ I wanna jump into the sack with you, but it’s prolly gonna happen. I’m not gonna worry about it when it does, and neither should you.”

“Not if I can help it,” the professor muttered, mostly to himself. Then after a pause, the professor asked, “Now what are we going to do about your clothes? None of my stuff will fit you, and Vladimir took every thing he has with him.”

Seeing the stricken look on the professor’s face, the boy replied, “Hey, don’t worry about it, I’m sure there must be a mall around here and you can prolly take me there in the morning.”

“No, Andy, you don’t understand,” the professor said. “This is Russia. You’ve probably seen pictures of Russian department stores, but those are much nicer than the reality. The store shelves have already been picked clean of warmer, winter clothing and the spring and summer fashions, such as they are, won’t arrive for months. When they do come in, we’ll have to wait in line for hours over a period of days, just to get a few basic outfits for you. No, I’m going to have to requisition some clothing for you, and it will be days or weeks before a party apparatchik even takes a look at my request. Don’t be surprised if it takes two or three months to get you some clothes.”

With a sigh of resignation, the boy responded, “Then I guess I’m gonna hafta be a nudist for the next few months,” as he toed off his flip-flops and dropped his jeans to reveal that he didn’t even have underwear. The boy was a breathtakingly beautiful, but the professor couldn’t and wouldn’t allow himself to think that way.

“Andy,” the professor began, “you don’t need to go around naked…”

“Yeah, I do,” the boy replied. “These jeans prolly won’t last more than a dozen washings, if that, and so I need to save them for when we go outside, or when we have visitors. I suspect that will happen a lot, ’cause they obviously abducted me to try and get to my father. So the way I see it, I really don’t have a choice.” Although the professor couldn’t know it, this was pure Andy — always a step ahead of everyone else.

Noticing just how threadbare the jeans really were, the professor found himself responding in agreement with the boy. “Actually, as thin as those jeans are, I doubt they’d survive even one washing in a Soviet washing machine.” Both the professor and the boy broke into unrestrained laughter, helping to lighten the mood considerably, but then the professor had a sobering thought.

“Andy, the KGB seldom does anything without a great deal of forethought,” the professor continued, “and dropping you off in the middle of nowhere with nothing more than jeans virtually guaranteed to disintegrate with their first washing undoubtedly is part of an overall strategy. I suspect that they hope to take advantage of your teenage insecurities, perhaps by using your nudity and a promise of new clothing to get you to do their bidding.”

Laughing, the boy responded, “Then they sure as fuck got the wrong kid.” The professor was a bit taken aback by the teen’s casual use of profanity, but the boy kept right on going. “As my Dad’ll tell you, I have no modesty whatsoever. Hell, I’m practically nudist as it is, and I really don’t give a fuck who sees my privates. Besides, I kinda enjoy goin’ naked.”

“But that’s the problem,” the professor responded. “I may not have raging hormones like you do, but I’m a normal gay man with normal attractions. You’re an incredibly handsome young man, and it’s only natural that I find myself attracted to you. It’s torture to see you like this when I can’t have sex with you.”

“Why can’t you, as long as I want it too?” the boy asked with a pout. The truth of the matter was that, by virtue of his raw sexuality and his extraordinary intelligence, the boy held incredible power over those in his presence, but he was far too young and far too desensitized to casual sex to recognize it.

Noticing the professor’s obvious arousal, the boy began to become aroused himself. The professor might not be much to look at, but the thought of spending what might well be the rest of his life alone was too much for the boy. He needed companionship and he had a physical needed sex that couldn’t be satisfied by his own hand.

Now fully aroused, Andy began walking up to the professor as seductively as a fifteen-year-old boy could. He reached out and began to unbutton the professor’s shirt. The professor found himself unable to resist.

The author gratefully acknowledges the assistance of David of Hope and Anthony Camacho in editing this story, as well as the support of Awesome Dude for hosting it.
This story is purely fictional and any resemblance of characters to real individuals other than named historical figures is purely coincidental and unintentional. Some characters may be gay and at times engage in homosexual acts. Because the story explores characters at various stages of their lives, they may be underage during early sexual explorations. Obviously, anyone uncomfortable with this should not be reading the story, and the reader assumes responsibility for the legality of reading this type of story where they live. The author retains full copyright, and permission must be obtained prior to duplication of the story in any form.

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