“You see, there are portions of the human anatomy which would keep swinging after the music had finished.”
(Sir Robert Helpmann)
I felt someone step up behind me, feeling rather than actually seeing, Zach’s larger, stronger, but beautiful body! Shit, I didn’t even know he was in the house! I’d bet my bottom dollar, if Scotty was here also, they were fucking like bunny rabbits about the same time Jamie and I were. I wondered if they’d heard the moans and squeals of delight as we both came!
“Who did you say you were?” Zach asked cordially, stepping up beside me where I could see him, his presence rapidly defusing a very tense situation!
“Jacob Kraft; I used to live here with my Dad, Art Kraft, Chief of Campus Security. Maybe I got the wrong house or he moved?”
I did a quick assessment of Jacob Kraft and could honestly say he looked like a Kraft, possessing many of the same body features as Jamie; dark hair, dark eyes, naturally tan in complexion, and really quite good looking!
Jamie’s head popped around me like a gopher popping his head out of a burrow to check the territory for either predators or just for the hell of it, looking around at the landscape! Wide-eyed, innocent smile adorning his face as only Jamie could have, excitedly squealed, “You’re my brother!” to a now very confused and perplexed Jacob!
“I think you’re at the right house, Jacob Kraft,” Zach said, “I think you’d better come in,” and stepping to the side, “and bring your stuff with you. There’s a story here you’ll have to hear to believe,” extending his hand to Jacob. “I’m Zach Long, Jamie’s cousin, “and he is” pointing to me, “Carlton Whitfield, Jamie’s boyfriend, and behind me, the good looking one of the bunch, is Scotty McFadden, my boyfriend.”
Jacob nodded and shook hands with each of us, although it was plain from the look on his face, he really was confused by it all and more than skeptical concerning the “boyfriend” introductions! I don’t know if he felt he was walking into a nut house, a whore house, or what, but man, he was hesitant! I noticed his eyes fell toward Zach’s crotch and stayed there a bit longer than one thought they should so I looked to see what he was looking at. Now, I’d never seen Zach’s male parts before, but from what I could determine, by the outline down one leg of his nylon shorts and the exposed head of his dick, partially peeking out from a nice foreskin, he was definitely one of Jamie’s “big cocked cousins!” If the term “horse cock” was ever applied to a human, Zach definitely qualified. He was bigger than Jamie, causing me to wonder for just a minute, how Scotty took it without splitting apart!
Jacob turned to pick up his suitcase and I quickly hissed at Zach, “The mayor is out taking some air!” and he quickly adjusted his shorts to cover “His Honor.”
Jamie was excited, Jacob was confused, and Scotty and I just waited to see what was going to happen next! Jacob followed Jamie and Zach into the living room; Scotty and I traipsed along behind, quiet, anticipating, wondering! All of us just got seated and we heard a vehicle drive up and stop on the driveway.
“Daddy and Momma are home,” Jamie announced excitedly. “Won’t they be surprised who’s here?”
I was willing to be they’d be more than just surprised! I could hear them talking, speculating as who the VW belonged to now parked out front, as they came up the front steps and walked into the house.
“Momma; Daddy!” Jamie squealed happily as he raced to the hall. “We got company, one of my brothers is here!”
I heard Chief Kraft mutter “Shit!” before he entered the living room.
Jacob stood, shakily, hesitantly, almost fearfully, turned to his father now walking into the room, looked at his father, and said tearfully, “Hi, Daddy!”
Chief Kraft didn’t race to embrace him, but stood, his arm around Ellen, more for his own benefit, providing support emotionally, responding, “Does your mother know you’re here, Jacob?”
“I don’t know, Daddy; I think so!”
“Jacob, why did you come here?”
“I had no place else to go, Daddy!” he sobbed.
“Oh, boy!” Zach sighed softly, “Time for us to go upstairs, Scotty!” and the two of them beat a hasty, but quiet, retreat up the stairs to Zach’s room.
I gave Jamie a flick of my head toward his room, saying, “Jamie?”
Jamie slowly waggled his head from side to side; “I’ve got a real brother, Whit;” looked at his mom and dad, asking in an emotionally charged voice, “Daddy, can Whit and I stay, please?”
Chief Kraft nodded his approval, frowned as if in thought, while asking Jacob, “What do you mean, you had no place else to go?”
Jacob’s shoulders began to shake as he hunched over slightly, covering his eyes with his hands unable to contain his sadness, letting it erupt in heart-wrenching sobs. When he began to cry, Jamie did a “Jamie thing;” stepping forward, his own emotions torn by the sight and sounds of someone in pain, physically or emotionally, wrapped his arms around Jacob, holding him in a strong, reassuring hug, much like I did to him when he became upset, as if trying to either absorb or share all of the sorrow, hurt, and fear Jacob spewed out in his gut-wrenching sobs!
“Jamie, Honey,” Ellen Kraft said softly, “why don’t you and Whit help Jacob to the sofa and keep him close while he tells us what horrible thing happened to him bringing him home to us for refuge and safety!”
Jamie led him over to the couch where I joined them. Jacob sat between us, one of Jamie’s arms around him, joining mine also around Jacob’s shoulders. Jacob looked at us curiously, at first, smiled slightly, looked at his father and, evidently feeling secure, took a deep breath and began!
“I wrote a note at Christmas; I should’ve said more, but I was afraid someone, specifically Mom, would read it. After we moved out and after the divorce, we lived in Grandpa and Grandma DeWitt’s house, as you know. They’re gone most of the time, either in Florida for the winter or at the lake in the summer.”
Rebecca, his mother continued being just as demanding and spoiled as ever; her parents indulging her every want; provided the necessary fees for his two older brothers to attend college, her and the boys a place to live, and funds sufficient to supplement “the trifle amount provided by that hillbilly cop, Art Kraft” according to his grandparents. It wasn’t a happy household, at least in Jacob’s eyes, filled with attending social functions, those gatherings of people who had money, believing it made them rich and cultured, but according to Jacob, they had no class or idea what to do with it, except to spend it on themselves with little concern for those who had less or little at all!
There was constant pressure to “do well and present your best possible public behavior, associate with the “right” people, all because it reflected on the DeWitt family, trying to maintain their “societal” place among the “nouveau rich.” His older brothers had to attend the “right” college; all three of them were expected to date and eventually marry the “right” girl, after approval by Rebecca and her father.
“There was the problem,” Jacob confessed hesitantly, “There were no girls around that really appealed to me,” stopped his dialogue, swallowed nervously, looked at his father, switched his pleading, almost shameful look at Ellen Kraft, almost begging her to either leave the room or say something!
Ellen smiled warmly at him and in a soft, soothing, comforting voice, reassured him in her response to his silent plea.
“Jacob, your father and I have a gay son, his boyfriend is sitting next to you; upstairs is my gay nephew, Zach and his boyfriend Scotty, both of whom you’ve already met, so, although you father and I are ‘straight’ and their sexual preferences are not ours, we don’t condemn their choices, we don’t punish it, we accept their choice, we celebrate each other’s differences, and we respect each other, so if you’re trying to tell us you’re gay, fine; don’t be ashamed of who you are! In this house, in our home, you’re not alone afloat in a sea of pirates or homophobes; you’ll find support and understanding and safe harbor!”
“Is that what you’re trying to tell us, Jacob?” his dad asked gently.
Jacob nodded slowly acknowledging his question and answered, “Daddy, I’m so afraid!”
“Afraid of what, Jacob?” Chief Kraft answered. “Are you afraid I’ll love you less for the way you were born or because your mother forced you away from me or because you discovered I’ve another son who you nothing about or that I’ve remarried?”
Again, Jacob nodded; “All of them!”
This time it was Chief Kraft’s turn to answer with emotion quivering his voice, as he held open his arms welcoming and inviting Jacob to leave the comfort and security of the couch, to accept the offered embrace of love and acceptance!
Father and son stood, holding each other; Chief Kraft slowly rocking his third son back and forth as his fourth son watched, wondering, as did I, where he stood in the line-up of father and son relationship; whether he would now be accepted as having a “real daddy” or treated as “the bastard child” from a sexual tryst. His fears and mine were quickly quelled!
“Oh, Jacob; I could never love you less because of my love for Jamie. You and Jamie, as well as John and Jeffery, are my sons. Jamie just came along a little bit later into our lives and we’re so happy to have him. This was your home before you left and still is, if you want it to be and are willing to share it with Jamie and my wife Ellen. I suspected, before the divorce, where your sexual preferences were and, if you remember, I didn’t treat you any differently. So, why don’t you join your brother back on the couch and listen to our story; Ellen, me, Jamie, and how it all started.”
“Before I really begin, Jacob, you must understand, Jamie is special to all of us,” smiling at his youngest son. “I didn’t know he even existed until a little over a year ago. His mother, my high school sweetheart, didn’t let me know. Jamie lived in a world of loving grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles, and a mother who loved him dearly, but Jamie always wondered who his ‘real daddy’ was until just recently. In school and in life, there are some things that come to him with difficulty, but he as so many gifts and talents, such as his art and music. However, most of all, his gift of love, very much like his mother; we sometimes find ourselves forgetting he needs our love and understanding in return to help him through some of those very scary things in his life. As you come to know him, you’ll love him as much as we do!”
Chief Kraft opened his arms to Jamie and accepted a loving hug and kiss from him before Jamie returned to the couch with Jacob and me.
Jacob sat between us as Chief Kraft told the story, a love story developing between two high school sweethearts, one a beautiful young lady from the surrounding hills and the other an equally handsome, lightly permanently tanned, young man of Hispanic heritage; how they so dearly and deeply loved each other; the tragic separation when they young man married; the disastrous, unhappy marriages, the reunion of the man and now woman, the fruition of their love; the man not knowing he’d impregnated his sweetheart, returned and found a son he’d never dreamed of having or loving so much, as the man did his mother; and finally, the marriage which was meant to be and should’ve been in the beginning.
“Now, Jacob, what happened to bring you home to us?”
Jacob’s story wasn’t unlike many other gay kids stories, each having its own twist, peculiarities, personal same yet different circumstances and outcomes; knowing relatively early in life he was “different;” trying desperately to become something he wasn’t for fear of rejection by family and friends, hiding his emotions deep in the closet, hoping, fearing no one else would find out; fearful of his own safety if those in school should discover it and physically and emotionally abuse him, making him wander through life wary and showing, outwardly, the appearance of being “straight.” Fortunately, or unfortunately, a couple job transfers on the part of Art Kraft, finally ended up with him living in Jefferson and attending Hamilton Elementary School and Middle School.
After the divorce and the move to live with his grandparents, it wasn’t his mother who rejected him and caused him to leave, although she was complicit in the deed, but his grandfather! Jacob wasn’t pleased with the move or the divorce; according to him, he just didn’t feel comfortable in the new school or in his grandfather’s house. It wasn’t, according to him, a very happy house, full of phoniness, bigotry, and overt discriminatory remarks and actions!
His grandparents were planning on leaving for their summer at the lake house and, as they did each year, hosted a “going away party” for their friends, politicians, and business acquaintances or those the DeWitt’s deemed acceptable to be seen with or vice-versa! It was one of those parties where his grandparents could kiss ass and have theirs kissed by those who they thought would benefit them or by those who thought they’d benefit by kissing his grandfather’s hairy, fat ass!
One of those “acceptable” guests had a daughter who was enrolled in the same high school, was one of the “in crowd,” and evidently had her sights set on Jacob as another conquest or bed partner. She was determined to have him buried balls deep in a well-plumbed orifice before the party was over! She maneuvered him up to his bedroom, lifted her skirt, and invited him to enter the gates of paradise! When he refused, she stepped forward, crammed her hands down his pants, and began to fondle him erotically! Jacob didn’t respond, instead remained as soft as a tube of foam rubber, causing his to proclaim him as “queer as a deer” which he didn’t deny! Laughing, taunting him, she left, went back downstairs, and began spreading the word among the other teens in attendance. It didn’t stop there; she made certain everyone of “importance” knew it at school. Fortunately, there were only a few days left and he was out before anyone could pummel him!
His grandfather caught wind of the accusations a day or two after school was out and when Jacob didn’t deny it, ordered him out of the house, and to go live with his father. He was given enough money for a bus ticket, incidental expenses, and allowed to empty his savings account, which had a considerable amount in it, with the admonition “never to darken the doors of the DeWitt house again!”
“So, Dad,” Jacob concluded, “here I am. Do you still want me here? Do you have room for one more?”
“Of course we do,” Chief Kraft answered without hesitation. “This was your home before you left and it’s still your home now. In fact, your old bedroom is empty so you can move right in!”
“The rules haven’t changed any, Jacob; no drugs, no booze, no smoking in the house; we need to know where you’re going, who you’re with, and what time you’ll be home; treat others and yourself with respect, do your homework, do what Ellen and I tell you to do, and do your share around the house. It’ll take getting used to since there’s been a lot of changes since you left, but you’re welcome here, at home!”
He motioned to Jamie and me, asking, “Why don’t you boys take Jacob upstairs to the spare room and help him get settled? Perhaps you two, along with Scotty and Zach, if he doesn’t have to go to work right away, fill him in on anything else he needs to know, okay?”
Jamie, excited as a young pup wondering where it could piss without getting its ass swatted with a newspaper, bubbling with enthusiasm, almost ran up the stairs in his eagerness to show Jacob to his room. Once there, he took great pains in showing Jacob the (queen sized) bed, the dresser, clothes closet, and bathroom in the hall. Jamie didn’t spare showing him where the extra towels, washcloths, toothpaste, soap, and other personal hygiene and medical ointments and band aids were. Jacob, bless his heart, although he was familiar with the house having lived here, was extremely patient and indulging, as he nodded his understanding to a proud, but anxious Jamie!
“When you’re done putting your things away, I’ll show you my room!” Jamie invited.
Jacob smiled back, answering, “Why don’t I do that later; I’d really like to see your room and maybe have a chance to visit with Zach and Scotty as Dad suggested.”
Jamie giggled his happiness, as only he could, nodded his head, and led the way down the hall to his room. I quickly rapped on Zach’s door to forewarn them, just in case, and when Zach, fully dressed with the monster safely tucked away, opened the door, I invited them to join us in Jamie’s room.
In that short, very brief time, I thought, it took the three of us (Scotty still dressed in his running shorts and tee-shirt since he had nothing else to put on, face still glowing with “I’ve been freshly, deliciously, and satisfactorily fucked” looked), to walk to Jamie’s room, with Scotty guided by Zach’s hand placed and cupping his left butt cheek, smiling with that “And I’m the one that did it” look, were surprised, upon entering the room, found Jamie chattering like a blue-jay; well, he never talked very fast, but for him, fast, okay? He was busy answering Jacob’s questions concerning the art work posted on the bedroom wall. Jacob seemed just as interested in the unfinished piece on Jamie’s easel and how Jamie used the camera in his art, evidently discussed earlier. I think I was taken aback discovering how much information can be transmitted in the short space of time I’d left them alone; or I was in Zach’s room longer than I thought.
“I was just showing my new brother my drawings,” Jamie explained, pleased Jacob seemed to have taken an interest in them. From the look on Jacob’s face, I thought he was sincere in his interest, I hoped, and not faking it. I didn’t want to rush in my judgement of him; I needed to know about him, especially now he was going to be a member of this household. I was just as curious how his relationship with Jamie would develop. After all, Jamie was first, the illegitimate, now legitimate, son of Jacob’s father. Would Jamie be seen as a “usurper,” an intruder, create a jealous streak between him and Jacob vying for the father’s attention and as a result, Jamie being treated badly?
How would Jamie accept Jacob into their family? Would he feel left out since Jacob was older and lived with their dad longer? I doubted Chief Kraft would treat Jamie any different than before. Jamie had so much love and support from Ellen and Chief Kraft, the entire Long family, and especially me, I really didn’t fear too much for him, but still did a little bit. Besides, with his cousin Zach close by, what he didn’t take care of, the Four Horsemen would!
Zach stepped forward, extended his hand, by way of introduction; “We’ve already met informally, but I’m Jamie’s cousin on his mother’s side. Aunt Ellen and my dad are brother and sister. I moved up here at Christmas time. Uncle Art and Aunt Ellen offered me a place to live while attending CSU – I’m going to major in Police Science.”
He went on to explain he had to go work after lunch, about mid-afternoon, to work a catered dinner party in the Commons or Student Union. “The Food Service caters banquets and other meals there and hire extra help to wait tables, clean up, and stuff. I work for the Buildings and Grounds department, usually the day shift, and pick up extra work where I can. Uncle Art helped me get the job with Buildings and Grounds and I answered an ad for the extra work at Food Service. The extra pay comes in handy; helps pay the tuition and books.”
This summer Zach was also taking a couple of classes and his supervisor arranges his work schedule so he can go to class and work too. All of it was great for him since it made college affordable. “I couldn’t afford to go college if I didn’t live here with Uncle Art and Aunt Ellen,” he explained.
Turning to Scotty to acknowledge him, he said, “You’ve met Scotty McFadden, my boyfriend, downstairs.”
Scotty stepped forward, proffered his hand, while giving Jacob a visual appraisal, yet I could tell by the way he looked, it was more of an evaluative look, preferring, as I did, to withhold any judgement.
Jacob must have sensed the hesitation, he coughed nervously before asking, “How did you guys meet?”
Zach settled himself on the floor, spread his legs inviting Scotty to join him. Once Scotty settle in between those long legs, back resting against Zach’s chest, arms around Scotty’s chest, holding him lovingly, Zach explained, “Uncle Art and Aunt Ellen invited my grandparents up for Thanksgiving and my folks offered to drive them up. I thought it was great opportunity to move some of my stuff in so my younger brother and I loaded up my pickup and came along.”
“There wasn’t enough room for me stay here so I ended up staying in a spare room at Scotty’s.”
Zach paused, squeezed Scotty a little closer, leaned over, and kissed his head, saying, “When I first spotted him, I thought he was the most beautiful boy in the world! When I discovered he played the fiddle, I just knew we could make indescribable music together and we can!”
Jacob asked, “What did your parents say, Scotty, about you dating Zach?”
Scotty told him the sad tale of the upheaval at his home when he made the announcement he was gay, of his running away, being brought back home by his dad and Chief Kraft, the separation, the divorce, and the promises, and kept, they made to Chief Kraft.
“I turned sixteen in March,” Scotty explained, “and my choice was just fine with my dad and great as far as Zach and I are concerned.”
“How about you and Jamie?” Jacob asked, looking at me.
I was sitting on Jamie’s bed, my back up against the head board, Jamie resting between my legs, head on my chest, my arms around him, similar to Scotty and Zach, and, at Jacob’s question, twisted his head, looked at me inquisitively, silently telegraphing me the message he wanted me to answer for both of us!
I told Jacob the story of how a new, good-looking boy came to our school and was enrolled in the same Art class and Choir I was; how I visited with my parents about him and was reminded not to have my heart broken again or break his either; the day Jamie arrived in my physical education class; how the Four Horsemen rallied around him and, finally; how I fell in love with James Arthur Long.
“Jamie talked about his ‘new daddy’ after his mother and Chief Kraft were married because he never had a real daddy until he started running with us and Chief and Mrs. Kraft revealed, one day while I was there, Chief Kraft was his ‘real daddy’ and how much they loved him. Jamie was so excited, as was I and all of our friends that he now had a ‘real daddy’ like the rest of us!”
I sighed, “The more I was with him, the more I loved him!”
Pausing in my story, looking over at Jacob, staring at him, my eyes narrowed, determined look on my face, warning him, as I said softly, but with measured sternness, “I promised Chief Kraft and Mrs. Kraft I’d love him more than life itself, protect him against anyone, friend, relative, or foe from any harm, no matter what the risk to, the danger of, or giving up of my own life for him! Understood?”
Jacob nodded, slowly, letting the impact of my words sink in, contemplating, and realizing I was dead serious telegraphing should he do anything to harm Jamie, physically or emotionally, he’d have me to reckon with!
Zach and Scotty were silent throughout my story, my pronouncement of my love and protection of Jamie. Zach finally said, “And that goes for me and the entire Long Family!”
“And me,” added Scotty, “along the other Horsemen. Pegasus, Jamie, is all of us in one person and we love him as well!
Jacob coughed, nervously, aware now of the protective shield surrounding Jamie and our resolve to keep it, looked away, spotted the guitar and banjo on their stands, and asked, “Do you play, Jamie?”
Before Jamie could reply, I spoke up! “Okay, Jacob, now why don’t you tell us why you’re really here, this time without all of the bullshit?”
He started to protest, until I held up my hand, adding, “I think Zach would agree you can’t shit an old turd, so let’s have it!”
Jamie, confused, twisted his head, gave me a hurtful look, wondering why I’d treat his “new brother” in such a disrespectful manner!
I calmed him quickly, explaining, “I think Jacob has some things to say he didn’t want to say in front of your Momma and Daddy- isn’t that right, Jacob?”
Jacob swallowed, with difficulty I might add, clearly uncomfortable and uneasy since I called his hand, forcing him to tell something he’d been avoid saying, hopeful I might accept his previous explanation without question. Well, he underestimated me!
“Everything I said was true, to a point! Yes, the girl at the party did spread the story and yes, my Grandfather DeWitt did confront me on it.”
“But there’s more, isn’t there?”
“Yeah, but it’s a long story, so it may take a while, but here goes!”
Ever since Jacob could remember, his mother and father’s relationship was in a constant turmoil, hence so was the household! The battles were generally over his father’s failure to pursue a career as a lawyer even though he had a Jurisprudence Doctorate; where they lived and the “substandard housing” according to Jacob’s mother; the continuing badgering by his mother to move to her hometown where “the boys can grow up in a decent society, away from all of the common riff-raff,” surrounded by family instead; Art’s job as a Border Patrol Officer, dealing with “wetbacks, dope smugglers, whores, and those who take jobs away from decent Americans;” forbidding his Dad to speak Spanish around the house, (“like some half-educated migrant or displaced person”) denying his own and his son’s ethnicity and heritage!
“Grandfather DeWitt didn’t help the situation either,” lamented Jacob, “whenever we would visit over the holidays without Dad or all summer, he’d just add to the bullshit by encouraging Mother’s ranting about Dad. Grandfather DeWitt is one goddamned prejudiced, bigoted old ornery son-of-a-bitch. If you’re not white, Anglo-Saxon Protestant, in his eyes you’re just as worthless a piece of shit and he says so!”
It was a comment that brought Jamie upright again, eyes wide open, mouth open in astonishment; there were three of us in the room who knew exactly what was going to come out of his mouth next and he didn’t disappoint us!
“You dares’nt say that around Momma, Jacob!” Jamie cautioned.
“Why; does she know him?”
Jamie shook his head “no,” “I mean those words, you know,” one hand sort of shielding his mouth secretly as if no one except Jacob would be able to hear what he said. “Words like goddamn or shit or son-of-a-bitch, or Momma will wash your mouth out with soap!”
Jamie nodded knowingly, authoritatively!
Jacob sort of smiled, “How does the soap taste, Jamie?”
“Pretty yucky!” he responded, grimacing and shuddering slightly remembering his displeasure at the taste.
“I’ll have to be very careful,” acknowledged Jacob.
Jamie felt better, having warned his “new brother” and settled back comfortably up against my chest once more.
“Well, Dad fooled her and everyone else, with our help of course,” chuckled Jacob. “He was forbidden to speak Spanish within sound of my mother or grandparents, but it didn’t stop him from teaching it to the three of us, with an admonition never, never speak it around mother or our grandparents. When we were with him, he spoke Spanish almost exclusively, except when to explain the meaning of a word or introducing a new word.”
Growing up, Jacob knew by age ten or so he was “different,” leaning toward the gay side of life. His brothers noticed it, accepted his preference, and cautioned him to keep it to himself in fear of what might happen if his mother or grandparents discovered he was gay. Jacob spent his life, at least until recently, frustrated, fearful, and anxious ridden!
The bickering and fighting between his parents all came to a head and, at the urging of his grandfather DeWitt, his mother and father divorced; the terms of the divorce forced the boys to live with their mother, who chose to live with her parents. Older brother, John, now twenty-three just finished his university degree in Accounting; Jeffery, age twenty and in his second year of college, was working on pre-law with hope of entering a college of law at some university.
“My brothers had no choice in where they attended college,” stated Jacob derisively, “Grandfather DeWitt chose the school, pushed them into the field he thought would benefit him, and paid the bill! Dad still has to pay child support until we reach the age of twenty-one as well as contribute to college costs until we graduate. John will graduate, let’s see, this weekend!”
Jacob really laughed then! “Boy will mother and Grandfather DeWitt be surprised when they go to the ceremonies and out to dinner afterward and meet John’s fiancé.”
“Why’s that?” Scotty asked.
“Well, first of all they don’t know he’s engaged and secondly, she’s black and beautiful! I’ll be surprised if Grandfather DeWitt lives through the encounter, dying of shock!”
Laughing, he paused momentarily, looked at the surprised looks on our faces, before adding, almost nonchalantly, “Don’t be a bit surprised if he shows up here as well. His fiancé has a major in Chemistry and is going to pharmacy school. She finished her bachelor’s from CSU, and went on to pharmacy school after that. She’s from here,” he added, “and attended high school at Public. They met while in high school but kept it quiet.”
Jamie looked up at me, sort of rolling his eyes; I think wondering where another one or two would sleep. I just shrugged! I wondered the same thing, but kept my own counsel on the issue.
“Well, back to what really happened after girly-girl shot her mouth off and grandfather and mother confronted me.” Jacob sighed angrily. “He called me to his study and with mother listening to my answer, I admitted it!”
Rather than denying his sexual orientation and preferences, Jacob stood his ground and almost defiantly admitted it! Mr. DeWitt launched a tirade of hate and expletives concerning what he thought of homosexuals or “queers, faggots, fudge packers” and any other terms or filth he could bring to mind; in the process he also attacked Jacob’s father, Chief Kraft, as “a fucking wetback Spic who seduced his daughter, raped her, and got her pregnant with a bunch of half-Mex brats.”
As Jacob relayed it, his grandfather sputtered, “You’re just like him, stick your cock in any hole, only you’d rather rape little boys!”
It was that final comment that drove Jacob over the edge, accusing his grandfather of lying, hate speech, attempting to drive a wedge between his father and sons, and finally, of being a homophobe! When Jacob sputtered to a stop, his grandfather announced menacingly, “you’re going to regret your fucking perverted behavior; I’m shipping your sorry ass to a military school in Mississippi where they’ll either make a real man out of you or kill you in the process!”
Jacob glared defiantly at him, turned around, dropped his pants, and bared his ass!
“And you can kiss my queer little ass, Granddaddy, dear,” he mocked, “or would you rather fuck it first before you do?”
As he pulled up his pants, his grandfather spun him around and walloped him across the face, bloodying his nose and knocking him to the carpet.
“Oh, my god!” I snorted, holding Jamie even closer since he was really starting to get upset hearing the conversation.
“I fell down not far the fireplace in his office, wiped my face, picked up an iron poker from its stand, stood, pointed it at him, and growled, ‘no you’re not, you sanctimonious old bastard! I’m going to go live with my dad and you, or her,’ pointing at his mother, ‘will do nothing to stop me. Even try and you know what?’”
“What?” his grandfather snarled back.
“Grandmother DeWitt and that windbag of a preacher at your church are going to learn how you’ve been fucking that cute little housekeeper for the last couple of years!”
“Yeah, right; as if they’d believe some little queer ass bastard like you!?
“Oh, they don’t have to take my word for it! You weren’t so discreet when you had her spread out over your desk, skirt hiked up to her tits, her legs wrapped around your waist, your flabby ass jiggling as you grunted and thrust into her! Nah, you were so busy you never noticed me peeking in the door, my cellphone camera catching every disgusting moan and groan as you shot your pitiful load up her snatch!” holding up the cellphone with the video playing.
“You watch your mouth,” his mother shouted.
Jacob swung his attention back to her; “You, mother dear, should change your password on your laptop. It seems all those charity events you attend are really an excuse to have a weekend with ‘Mr. Clean-cut, with a wife and three kids politician’ you’ve been fucking since before you divorced Dad, if all those e-mails you lovers have exchanged are correct!”
His mother sputtered her denial, but he shut her off! “Really mother, he shouldn’t have sent you all those nude pictures of himself. I particularly enjoyed the short video he sent while jacking off, chanting your name over and over. I’ve seen bigger cocks on ten year old boys! Just to ease your mind, I’ve downloaded all of it on a flash drive!”
Jacob turned to leave, but added, “I’ll expect your attorney to notify Dad you’ve requested all child support payments and college funding to stop,” and left.
He loaded up his VW, stopped at the bank, closed out his savings account, and drove here.
The four of us, after listening to his story, sat quietly, almost dumb-struck, so to speak, amazed and somewhat depressed by it all. His story was not unlike others, but never had we heard of such a violent rejection by mother and grandfather. Aren’t your grandparents supposed to love you no matter what?
Jamie was way too quiet! I turned his face toward me, saying softly, “We’ll talk about this, okay?”
He nodded, eyes big in either wonder or fear, I know not!
“And,” I cautioned, “it’s Jacob’s place to tell your Momma and Daddy, not ours, okay?”
Again he nodded! There was no way he’d tell his Momma such a story! Jamie was raised with a loving family surrounding him and was having a real hard time wrapping his head around the turmoil Jacob experienced, especially since Jamie’s grandparents gave him such unconditional love!
“So, Jamie,” Jacob asked, turning the conversation, “do you play?”
Ellen called up the stairs just then; “Jamie, Honey, Daddy has burgers on the grill so get cleaned up for lunch. I’ve called Scotty’s Dad and Whit’s parents so they know you boys will be staying to eat with us!”
Saved by the bell, or in this case, Jamie’s Momma.
Zach quickly said, “Jacob, if you want to hear Jamie and the rest of us play, ride along with Aunt Ellen and Uncle Art tomorrow afternoon to Scotty’s where we’re having a ‘school’s out” program for parents and a few friends, thanking them for their support.”
Jamie spent the afternoon at my house, where we talked through his feelings after hearing Jacob. Naturally, he was upset, but soon, with a little smooching, decided Jacob could handle it just fine. The time spent with me was good for both of us and also gave Jacob a chance to unpack and spend some time with Art and Ellen, getting reacquainted with his father and getting to know his father’s new wife, now his step-mother.
I walked Jamie home about dinner time and, if I read people correctly, Ellen and Chief Kraft were now more than aware of the circumstances concerning Jacob’s unannounced appearance and moving in. I never asked; it was none of my business!
The next day it took us about a half hour to set up our equipment in the family room at Scotty’s. It is a nice large room and his dad, along with Scotty and Zach, already had folding chairs lined up in rows facing the area set aside where we were putting our instruments and sound system. There were way more chairs than we needed, so I asked Zach why.
He shrugged, much like Jamie would do; “All I know is Dr. McFadden said he’d invited some other people, but he wouldn’t say who.”
Our families gathered at the appointed hour and the moms set up a refreshment table with cake, cookies, coffee, and soft drinks. Indeed, as they worked, there were other gentlemen and ladies joining us, in fact, about a dozen individuals. Some looked vaguely familiar, perhaps people from the faculty or staff of the university, but I really wasn’t certain!
Dr. McFadden stepped up, called everyone’s attention to the front, and turned it over to Zach. Zach thanked everyone for their support and encouragement throughout the past year and especially the past semester, welcomed the visitors to enjoy themselves, and, as a courtesy to them, introduced each member of “Missionary Ridge.”
“Jamie Long on guitar, banjo, and vocal; Carlton Whitfield, ‘Whit to all of us,’ playing keyboard and vocal; Scotty McFadden, fiddle and vocal; Derrick Gray, string bass and vocal; Chris Fischer, drums and rhythms; and me, I’m Zach Long and play guitar, banjo, mandolin, and vocal.”
Once done, he led us into some of our favorites and we played about a half an hour before he took a break. I watched Jamie as we played, his natural rhythm causing him to move his hips and feet, albeit not vigorously, but in time with the music, reminding me of our dancing lesson and the Spring Fling. Honest to God, I had to really make certain I stayed behind my keyboard as we played since I got as hard as the Rock of Gibraltar.
In April, when we began running outside instead of on the indoor track, that is, when the weather was decent and not that shitty snowy, rainy, wet type weather. One bright sunny Saturday morning, Pegasus and the Four Horsemen completed our run and Jamie and I headed for his house, as usual. I’d dropped off clean clothes to wear, after we showered (together of course, depending on who was home at the time), but this particular day his mother was busy working in their bedroom and, since it was close to the bathroom, thwarting our plans for a nice, slow conjugal shower together. Thus, we decided discretion is the better part of valor (and less embarrassing should his mother find us locked in a conjugant embrace) for us to shower separately. It didn’t mean, however, we had to dress separately!
Jamie showered first and waited for me, naked of course, in his room, for me to finish. I exited the bathroom, bath towel wrapped securely around my waist to conceal myself from anyone in the hall. Fortunately I did, because Mrs. Kraft was just going down the stairs.
“Breakfast in about a half hour or forty-five minutes,” she announced, knowing full well I’d tell Jamie and I’d be staying for breakfast as well.
I closed Jamie’s bedroom door, dropped my towel, and was met with a very big hug from a very naked Jamie. Knowing full well what he wanted, I reached around behind me and locked his bedroom door. Hoping to forestall him a minute of two, I quickly asked, “Jamie, the Spring Fling is next week at school; want to go?”
He released me from the hug, but still remained in contact, my flesh against his, warm, smooth, and inviting!
“You mean the dance?” he asked
“But I don’t know how to slow dance; all I can do is the fast dances!”
“It’s easy Jamie; with your rhythm, you’ll do just fine!”
“Teach me how to slow dance!” he pleaded.
“But we’re naked!”
Jamie grinned rather sheepishly, “I know; I like being naked with you!”
“Okay, Jamie, but we have to be serious!”
Telling him that, naked as we both were, was like telling a horny dog knotted into a bitch in heat, pumping her full of doggy sperm, to get off and leave her alone! Not going to happen folks!
I rummaged around in his CD’s and found one with some slow music on it, put it in the player, turned it on, put my arms around Jamie, and began teaching him to dance. I think he was just shitting me! Jamie placed his head on my chest, sighed deeply, and danced quite well, chest to chest, arms around each other, cocks wobbling between us, stimulating us, bringing up to full erections!
“My balls jiggle when I dance,” Jamie giggled.
“That’s not all that’s jiggly,” I responded, feeling his hard cock bouncing up and down against mine.
Finally, feeling him massaging my ass cheeks, sliding his finger up and down my butt crack, and twitching it around my hole, I turned, bent slightly over, heard him say, “Oh, yeah” before leaning over me, his head just behind mine where his lips kissed, nibbled, and nuzzled my neck, shoulders, and ears as he slowly began inserting himself, wiggling his beautifully, big, hard cock up into my very depths! Wrapping his arms around my middle, giving him access to my own turgid rod and securing himself to me, Jamie began that familiar, delicious rhythm we both loved and anticipated until my constricting muscles and the warm of my tight tunnel brought him off! He pumped my dick even harder as he spurt and spurt and spurt into me, bringing me off in his hand! Each time he squirted, I could feel him swell and pulse, a feeling I loved. He stayed mounted until he could expend no more at that moment and I could feel his sperm leaking out around his cock base and sliding down on my balls!
When I came, he cupped his hands to catch it and held it in his hands until he pulled out, wiped his hands on a towel, along with my butt crack and his dick. “So we don’t get goo on the carpet,” he explained.
Breakfast was great and we both really had an appetite!
A week later, we danced as if we’d been dancing together for years; I guess that meant we were “compatible!”
My reverie was interrupted when Zach, instead of totally quitting playing, again took center stage, slowly picking and strumming his guitar softly, and said, “I think you’re in for a special treat this afternoon. You’ve all heard Cousin Jamie play his guitar and sing, along with a little banjo playing on some of the pieces we played. The group, along with Jamie, have been working on some new numbers we’re going to play today. A few short years ago, Jamie saw a PBS special featuring a young man by the name of Daniel Rothwell who played ‘clawhammer banjo” music. Jamie was intrigued and fascinated by the style and the young man and was inspired by it to want to learn to play that particular style. Fortunately, Grandma Violet Long’s brother, our Uncle Walter Elliott, played banjo in the old time ‘clawhammer style’ and offered to teach him.”
“Year before last, I gave Jamie a CD of Daniel Rothwell’s CD, ‘A Long Hard Ride©’ and ‘Missionary Ridge’ is going to play a couple from that CD, which I’ve arranged to suit our group, along with a few other old time numbers Uncle Walter taught Jamie. You’ll notice, right away, which song is one of a Jamie’s favorites. Besides Jamie, there is one other member of our group who will get a real workout and that’s Derrick Gray on the string bass. We hope you enjoy the music.”
Jamie sat down, plucked a few opening notes, and cut loose!
Jamie, played, sang, Derrick kept up the beat on his string bass and we entered where we were supposed to! Zach did a fabulous job of arrangement for us and we loved playing the songs, fast, sometimes slow, but always upbeat, some real toe-tapping music! What made it more enjoyable was Jamie; his voice was so nice to listen to, as well as his fast paced picking of the banjo. When he teamed up with Zach in a duet, their voices blended and complimented each other in such a way it was apparent these two cousins had experience singing together under the tutelage their Grandmother and Grandfather Long as well as Ellen, Jamie’s mom, before we ever formed our little band!
Each song was introduced by Zach and when he introduced “Ol’ Rattler” and Jamie started to play and sing, everyone knew he loved the song, especially when he sang “here Rattler, hear” and yelped out “HERE, HERE!” then singing, “hear Rattler here, call Ol’ Rattler from the barn!”
Derrick’s fingers had to be sore from the constant plucking rhythm he kept during Jamie’s portion. We transitioned into selections consisting of a mixture of folk and bluegrass numbers. Jamie switched back to his guitar and we, as a group, played and sang our hearts out giving our best to the music we’d come to love to sing and play! Our entire program lasted about an hour and a half. When we wound down and Zach thanked everyone again for all they did for us, Dr. McFadden stepped forward.
“I have a couple of announcements to make, both of which will be a bit of a surprise to our group, but first I’d like to introduce our guests.”
He proceeded to introduce the Director of University Relations and Director of University Special Events, Dean of the College of Fine Arts, Head of Department of Music, Director of Alumni Relations, Dean of Library Services, the Mayor of Jefferson as well as a couple of council members, and the Executive Director of the Greater Jefferson Chamber of Commerce.
“I’ve invited these fine people because, they’ve agreed to cooperate and help sponsor Central States University’s first annual, ‘Harvest Gold’ Music Festival, featuring those golden folk, traditional, bluegrass, and old-time music selections such as we’ve enjoyed today and the country is beginning to love again. The festival is scheduled for the second weekend after the beginning of the fall term. We considered seeking some professional groups for the weekend, but after visiting with our Music Department and the Dean of Library Services during which we reviewed the extensive collection of folk, traditional, and bluegrass music, both print and recorded, we have and considering most of it was recorded or developed in the hills and mountains of our state and country by just common folk telling a story, decided to stick with non-professionals; those local groups who have a following in their own locales and perform the music the way we think would be appropriate for this type of festival.”
“Our headliners, for this first festival, will be ‘Missionary Ridge,’ ‘Captured Jack,’ both local groups; ‘Earl and Violet Long Family’, featuring grandson, Ed Earl Long; ‘Sugar Creek Revival’ from South Carolina.”
“That’s my Daddy’s relatives,” hissed Scotty as Dr. McFadden mentioned their name, “they’re really good!”
“…Taylor’s Gap,’ featuring Jim Bob, and Sammy Lee Long and Company from Missouri, and from the southern part of our state, where hill country and music has existed for many years, ‘South Lee Pony Boys!’”
“Taylor’s Gap,” consisting of cousins of Zach’s and Jamie’s were just about the same age, only a couple of years older. Jamie and Zach had been playing with them for several years before Jamie and Zach came to Jefferson. It sounded to me as if the Kraft household would be full to overflowing for the music festival, but, knowing the Long Family, they’d make do and just enjoy the hell out of it!
It was going to be an incredibly busy summer I thought; not only would we be practicing for the festival, but we still had our running to do. We were hoping in the fall, when cross country track season began, we could qualify for the State Cross Country meet at least that was our objective. Coach Schroeder seemed to feel we had just as good a chance as anyone and really encouraged us. Our volunteer coaches from the law enforcement community ran with us when they could and were really great!
The second announcement Dr. McFadden had really blew our socks off!
“I’ll ask Dr. Thomas Fischer, Head of the Art Department, to come forward and help me with this.”
“For the better part of a year,” Dr. Fischer began, “faculty members at Hamilton High and in our university art department have spent time, with his parents’ permission, encouraging and working with Jamie Long; helping him develop style, technique, and channel his passion for his talent so he could unleash the incredible artist gift he has. If some of you were fortunate enough to receive a Christmas card, the front cover adorned with a print of a pencil/charcoal portrait of the three of them, from Art, Ellen, and Jamie Kraft, you appreciate the time, talent, and eye for detail and beauty in it. The unspoken, but depicted emotion and depth in that simple, but complicated print is the work of a very talented and gifted young man.”
The professors in the art department who decided to work with Jamie, no surprise to me since he’d sometimes leave art class to trot off to one of the studios or study rooms to meet with one or another of them, encouraged Jamie to use his camera and take pictures around campus. The pictures could be of buildings, people, trees, activities, anything that struck him as being interesting or appealed to him, and, using his own interpretation and style, render those pictures into pencil/charcoal drawings. The professors critiqued the work, made suggestions, but really allowed Jamie to produce them in his own, delicate, detailed, and captivating style.
“Our department met with the Dean of Fine Arts, the head of the University Press, the Director of Alumni Affairs, and the Director Library Services and, with the approval of Dr. and Mrs. Kraft, will offer for sale beginning this fall, a collection of the portraits, landscapes, and still-lifes’ depicting our campus, rendered by Jamie, in an assorted box of greeting cards. We think it will be a great seller for us, and for him, bringing awareness to our campus. Sale of these cards will be of a financial benefit to Jamie and for our own University Press, who you know many times runs on a thin line.”
According to Dr. Fischer, Jamie also submitted, in addition to the requested drawings of campus life, a number of drawings of his home, the people, and surrounding countryside where he lived in Caudry. There were drawings of his Grandfather Long on his tractor working in the field, “Old Red,” Jamie’s hound, boys fishing in the river, and, yes even some with the boys skinny dipping, sans faces of course! The drawings chosen for the other series of greeting cards would be entitled, “Remembrances of Home.”
Jamie, through the agreements made by his father and mother with the University Press, would retain the intellectual rights, copyright ownership, and receive initial payment for the work, but also royalties and residuals, as defined and delineated in the agreement. I thought it was great; if his work sold (and I had no reason to doubt it would), Jamie would have an income, although limited, for the future. Of course, University Press would benefit financially as well!
After the afternoon activities were over, Jamie embarrassed and shy concerning all of the attention focused on him, Chief and Mrs. Kraft invited my folks and me to their home that evening to celebrate Jamie’s good fortune. It almost overwhelmed Jamie, wondering why people would ever want to buy his art work. Finally, in between his first and second piece of apple pie, he asked his dad,
“Daddy, do you think I’d be able to make twenty-five dollars on those cards they want to sell?”
Chief Kraft, smiled slightly, frowned a moment as if giving great thought to the matter, and responded, “I think so, son! Why?”
“I need a new guitar case and that’s how much it would cost!”
A week and a half later, on a Wednesday, Jamie and I arrived at his house around three or so in the afternoon. We’d spent the better part of the afternoon pedaling our bikes around the city to various places Jamie wanted to either take pictures of or do quick sketches. Chief Kraft put a rear carrier with a basket and bungee cords attached to it so Jamie could carry not only his camera but his canvas shoulder bag containing his sketch books, drawing pencils, charcoal, and any other items and supplies he might need for field excursions.
For some reason, the wooden gazebo in the center of Riverview Park, just off of the business district in the downtown, fascinated Jamie this particular day. According to him, something different could be seen as you looked at it, depending on where you stood. One way, the Little Poplar River, with its wooded banks, provided the backdrop; looking in the opposite direction, from the other side, the downtown business district; looking another direction, the veterans’ memorial, and so on. The gazebo wasn’t exactly small, but not humongous either! There were benches inside for people to sit shaded from the sun, protected from the rain, or to enjoy the night air; the structure was surrounded by well-maintained flower beds, and the park was ablaze with any number of other beds or gardens, all adding to the attraction of the park and Jamie’s scrutiny as well!
Giggling and laughing, we walked into the house from the back yard, through the family room to the kitchen, where Mrs. Kraft and Jacob were seated at the counter. Jacob was eating a piece of chocolate cake, washing it down with cold milk; Jamie licked his lips in anticipation of having some also. Jacob had gotten a job at a local greenhouse and garden center and started work at six in the morning during the week. It was hard work, but he loved it! Generally, he was home by two-thirty or three in the afternoon, depending on what he did that particular day.
Jamie headed for the cupboard to get us a couple of plates for our cake, but the doorbell chiming interrupted his journey.
“Jamie, Honey,” his mother asked, “since you’re up would answer the door for me?”
Anyone else might have grumped about it, but not Jamie; he was helping his mom and that was fine with him. He was so good-hearted, always seeming to put everyone else first. How could I not help but love him?
I accompanied him to the door and when he answered it, he immediately stepped back, slipping partially behind me, as he does when he encounters or is confronted with the unknown or something he perceives as a threat! Standing in front of us, on the front porch, were two young men, one older than the other, and a very beautiful African-American young lady.
The older of the two young men, asked, “Jamie? Are you Jamie?” and looked past me to Jamie, now sort of peeking over my shoulder.
Jamie nodded, snugged himself closer to me and answered softly, carefully, “I’m James Arthur Long and I live here. Who are you?”
From behind us, Ellen responded, “Jamie, these are your other two brothers, John, Jeffery, and John’s fiancé, Beth.”
Author’s note: If you are interested in learning more about “clawhammer banjo” and want to hear the music that Jamie loved to play, I would suggest to go to banjodanielmusic.com and read the information on the website. The album referred to in this chapter and story is A Long Hard Ride by Daniel Rothwell and is available for purchase from the website.
From the promo material for the album on the website
“This album showcases Daniel Rothwell's versatility. Daniel is backed by a
stellar cast of musicians including Jesse McReynolds, Steve Thomas, Marlin Rood,
Travis Wetzel, Jackie Case, and Johnny Warren.”
“He was able to start playing the banjo at age 11 and with the exception of a few good pointers along the way from his friends he is self taught. Daniel has been given pointers from some of the best. Jim Costa, Rebekah Weiler, Dan Knowles, Matt Kinman, and Phillip Steinmetz. Marlin Rood of Springfield, TN took a special interest in Daniel and mentored him to a higher level. Daniel has won many competitions across the South including the 2010 National Championship and the 2011 Tennessee State Championship. He has performed on the Grand Ole Opry, at Merlefest, The Ryman Auditorium, IBMA's Kids on Bluegrass and Old Time Opry Variety Show and has made several guest appearances on Ernest Tubb Record Shop's Midnight Jamboree with Bluegrass Legend Jesse McReynolds. This is just to mention a few of his accomplishments.”
Thank you for reading “Jamie’s Gift” Chapter Eight.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or locales is entirely coincidental.
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