Opening Your Home to Anyone Who Needs it Means Sometimes People Will Drop in Unannounced
Isaac sucked lightly on Cormac’s nipple, teasing it with his tongue as he did. He rolled Cormac’s other nipple between two fingers, not pinching too hard. He did, after a few licks, give just the gentlest bite, making Cormac gasp.
Then Isaac switched nipples, playing with the wet one and putting his mouth over the other one, immediately earning a whimper from Cormac. Isaac sucked harder this time, and Cormac made a loud sound. “Okay, okay,” he said, panting. “Okay, stop, I get it, I believe you.”
Isaac stopped, getting up. He was straddling Cormac, who was flushed in the face and looking up at Isaac, his hair a mess even though Isaac hadn’t touched his head. “So anyway,” said Isaac. “The reason why we have nipples even when we don’t need them is because touching them feels good.”
Cormac nodded, getting up once Isaac was off him. It was too late for him to pretend he didn’t have a boner tenting his pants up, but he did try to adjust it as discreetly as a boy could when he was in a room with six other people who’d just watched him get hard from having his nipples sucked. “Okay, well I guess that makes sense then. Thanks for explaining that. I should go, I have to do some homework.”
“Damn, Trey’s assigning homework in that class?” Isaac asked, sitting on the couch. “When I took it, we just meditated.”
“Yeah, I’m going to go meditate, bye!” He took off, absolutely colliding with someone in the doorway as everyone laughed at him. Isaac was hanging out with some of the new students to get to know them. They were cool.
Vinnie helped Cormac stand. “You okay?”
“Yes, I’m great, thank you Vinnie, you’re a pal.” Cormac ran away.
Vinnie shook his head and looked at Isaac. “There’s someone here to see you but I don’t think he’s been here before,” he said to Isaac. “So I brought him up so he didn’t get lost.”
Or sneak around, Isaac inferred. “Who is it?” He got up, straightening his shirt.
Daniel, the rich kid from the wedding, poked his head around the doorframe, looking embarrassed. “Uh, hi.”
Isaac smiled at him, coming over. “I’m going to go, I promised Daniel a tour,” he said to the other guys. “I’ll see you all later.”
“You don’t have to stop hanging out with your friends for me,” Daniel muttered, red in the face. He was still dressed for outside, in a nice green coat.
“I live with them, I’ll see them again.” Isaac didn’t like abandoning a group of friends for another, but Daniel had also come all the way here. “Thanks, Vinnie. I met Daniel at the wedding.”
Vinnie nodded. “He said he knew you and he kind of has Jacob’s vibes. Turns out he and I have stuff in common too. You guys need anything?”
“Nah,” Isaac promised. “Thanks.”
“Okay.” Vinnie headed into the room, and Isaac started walking down the hall with Daniel.
“It’s cool you came,” he said. “I thought after about how you said you wanted to hang out but then probably had no idea where to find me. How’d you get through the gates? They don’t let random people in.”
“The guards aren’t magic, I just snuck past them,” Daniel said, shrugging. He didn’t really have Jacob’s vibes, Isaac thought. Jacob would have spent several minutes explaining how he’d done it while still trying to seem mysterious. Daniel was just evasive. Isaac had a feeling he wasn’t used to talking about himself. Isaac had a sneaking suspicion he knew why, too. “Sorry, this is super weird. I’m leaving the capital soon and I just wanted to…get that tour before I left.”
“It’s not weird. It’s good to see you again.”
Daniel shrugged. “I mean it’s not like we’re friends. Your life wouldn’t be any different if you never saw me after the wedding.”
Wow, he was down on himself. “Sure it would be,” Isaac told him. “Because it’d be a version of my life where I only got to hang out with you once.”
“What…that’s such a dumb thing to say.” Daniel looked away.
“Sure,” Isaac said. “But you came here. Because you didn’t want to live the version of your life where you only got to hang out with me once.”
“That’s not why I came here.”
“Why did you, then?”
Daniel let out a breath, looking around. He was wearing a tight necklace that Isaac could just make out under his coat collar. “So you guys all live together here?”
“Yeah,” Isaac said, letting Daniel change the subject for now. “This one is the boys’ dorm, and there’s one for the girls. I can show you around, unless you want to see the whole academy first?”
“Uh.” Daniel seemed unsure. “I mean, I assume it’s just beds and stuff, right?”
As if beds and stuff were boring. “Yeah. We sleep four to a room even though there are empty rooms, go figure.”
“Go figure,” Daniel muttered. “I shared a room with seven other guys for a while even though our house was practically empty.”
“Wow. You guys must have had fun.” Isaac wasn’t sure he’d ever sleep if the dorm was like that.
“Yeah, I guess.” His body language suggested discomfort.
“You okay?” Isaac asked him. He clearly wasn’t and sometimes people just needed someone to ask them if they were. Vinnie had said he and Daniel had stuff in common. Isaac was pretty sure Daniel hadn’t shared that room by choice.
“What? Yeah, I’m fine.” Daniel scowled. “I just don’t see most of them anymore, that’s all. Not because of anything terrible, they just moved out.”
“Aw, that really sucks.” Someday Isaac was going to graduate and he probably wasn’t going to live with Spencer and Skip anymore. He probably wouldn’t see most of his dormmates after they graduated. And he didn’t like that idea much. And since he was now absolutely sure he knew how Daniel had met his friends, he knew it must have been even harder for him. “I hope they didn’t move too far away.”
“I guess not, they’re pretty close by. What was wrong with that kid who was running away when I got here?”
Isaac snorted. “Cormac thought that God made a mistake in giving boys nipples. I showed him why he was wrong.”
Daniel coughed. “Okay. I guess you guys don’t get any privacy in here.”
“Not really. I mean there are empty rooms and the privies have doors. The showers don’t and you just kind of get used to it after a while.”
“It’s cool that you get showers, though,” Daniel said, as if to himself.
“You want to see them?”
“No, I…” Daniel trailed off as they headed for the stairs. “I should go,” he muttered. “I shouldn’t have come here.”
Now Isaac frowned, stopping in front of him so he’d stop too. “You know what I think?”
“No, I can’t read your mind.”
That had almost been a joke, but Isaac didn’t think that meant Daniel was in a good humour sort of mood. “I think you didn’t come here to hang out with me.”
Daniel looked away, which was all the answer Isaac needed.
“I think you’re upset about something and you came here because it was somewhere you’d technically been invited to where nobody would ask you why you were upset,” Isaac ventured. Daniel was obviously a slave, which probably meant he was wary of going places he wasn’t allowed.
“I’m not upset.”
That was a fucking lie. “Okay. I’m not going to ask about it if you’d rather not talk about it. But I want you to do me a favour and stop acting like you’re a burden. You’ve been here like fifteen minutes and three or four times you’ve made it seem like I should be mad that you’re here.”
“You should be.”
“Well, I’m not.”
They stared at each other for a second. Daniel had big green eyes that were easy to get stuck looking at. He turned them away from Isaac after that second. “I should go.”
“Because you want to?” Isaac asked him. “Or because you think I should want you to?”
“You don’t even know me. You have no responsibility to make me feel better.”
“Yes, I do,” Isaac said firmly. “Because you’re in front of me and you’re sad.”
Daniel looked back at him now, eyes wider. “I did something terrible,” he whispered.
“That’s okay.” It probably wasn’t as bad as he thought. Maybe he was trying to run away from whoever owned him.
“No, it’s not. I’m going to do something else terrible.” Daniel was shaking, his hand near his lapel.
“Do you want to do it?” Isaac asked him softly.
Daniel shook his head. “I have to.”
Isaac took his hands. They were clammy, cold. “No, you don’t.”
“No,” Isaac interrupted, “you don’t, Daniel. And I think the only reason you came here was so you didn’t have to. So instead of doing something terrible, why don’t you let me show you the academy and introduce you to my friends? You can even sleep here tonight if you want. We have room.”
Daniel’s swallow was audible. “I’ve never seen a real shower before,” he said quietly. “And I heard you have a really big library.”
“Which do you want to see first?” Daniel seemed like the kind of guy who liked books, so he’d probably say the library.
“The shower. It’s closer, right?”
Isaac nodded. “Just downstairs. There’ll probably be a few guys fucking in there, but if you want I can ask them to clear out…”
Daniel was already shaking his head. “Don’t you dare. They can do what they want. I don’t want to, though. I’m, uh. Not that into sex, actually. Most of the time, anyway.”
Isaac tried so hard to remind himself that some people just weren’t into sex, like Skip. It didn’t have to mean anything bad. “Okay. Let me know if you’re ever not in most of the time, but until then let’s go see the shower. It’s cool, most of it isn’t even magic. It’s just like, pipes or some shit.”
“Is the water warm?”
“There’s a warm fountain.” Isaac could see Daniel’s interest. “That part is magic”
“Okay. I’m super cold.”
“Yeah, what the fuck with this snow?” Isaac asked. “I like snow, but blizzards in the spring are a bit stupid.”
Daniel nodded and they started walking down the stairs together. “Where I’m from, winter lasts pretty much until summer.”
Damn. It was colder longer in Clearwater than in the capital, but not like that. Another reason it must not be fun to live up in the north. “That blows. Spring is a great season. If you like birds and flowers, I guess.”
“They’re okay,” Daniel admitted, sounding like it was a big deal to say that.
“Yeah. Summer is the best, though. It’s the season that’s clothing optional.”
“Um…no it’s not?” Daniel asked. He mostly sounded confused.
Fortunately, Isaac was always here to educate. “Yeah, it is. I mean they all are, but it’s hard to take the option when your dick is in danger of freezing off.” They couldn’t all be Ron.
Daniel snorted at that, which looked involuntary. “I knew a guy who fucked a snowman.”
Isaac had done that once. “What happened to him?”
“Well…I don’t think the relationship made it to Judan.”
Now Isaac laughed. “Damn, just at the time of year when you want to put ice on your balls.”
“I’ve actually never wanted to do that?” Daniel asked, as they crossed the front room. “Well, I mean, except this one time when my friend kicked me, I guess.”
He already sounded much lighter to Isaac. Maybe he was even having a good time. Hopefully he was. They went down to the changing room and Daniel showed no modesty about taking off his clothes, though he did blush when Isaac saw that he had knives strapped to his legs. It was too bad he wasn’t into sex, because he was cute as fuck, but Isaac kept his staring respectful, mostly appreciating the shape of his butt once they were in the shower room itself.
Isaac didn’t know if Daniel would leave the academy feeling better than he was. He didn’t know what was wrong and he wasn’t going to make Daniel tell him. He didn’t even know Daniel that well. And he didn’t know what Daniel really needed, or what his situation really was.
But he wanted to. They could be friends, and maybe that would help. It seemed like it might be right now, at least in the short term. It never hurt people to have a friend they could talk to and feel safe around, no matter what their life was like. And so that was the version of their lives that Isaac hoped they could make real.