Good Monday morning! 2012 is just zipping by, isn’t it?
Did you enjoy the first chapter of Charlie’s latest adventure? Ready to see what cockamamie scheme Billy has to get them some cash? Before we get down to it, however, an announcement!
Em Woods’s Graham’s Gift is now available at All Romance eBooks. If you haven’t checked out this awesome story of stubborn attraction and even more stubborn men, click on over to the Story Orgy blog to find the blurbs and purchase link.
Our delicious photo was found by the lovely and artistic Jade Baiser. Isn’t she a wonderful photographer?
My post is a full length one today, and the prompt is: There are the things we don’t know about love.
A Hot Piece of … Art
It took Charlie over an hour and involved three bus changes to reach the address Billy had given him. When he came to a stop outside the building, he peered through tall windows at the white walls and hard wood floor inside, then turned to look up and down the block. Worn out warehouses and a few loft apartments that had been built years ago, before the recession, to try and make a new neighborhood spring up. They looked big, but the windows were dark, soulless, and made him shiver.
Charlie stepped to the door and read the name scrawled across the glass in bold script: Wisenheimer Artworks. What the hell kind of thing had Billy gotten him into this time? He took a breath, opened the door, and walked inside.
Billy was at the back of the long, empty room, talking with a man dressed in a very nice three piece suit. The man was tall, at least half a foot taller than Billy, and had dark black hair that had been styled into a great swoop running from left to right atop his head, a thick beard, dyed platinum blond, and brilliant green eyes. When Charlie walked in the door, Billy turned and smiled at him.
“Here he is!” Billy said and ran to give Charlie a hug. He turned back to the two-toned man he had been talking with and, with his arm around Charlie’s shoulders, said, “This is Charlie Heggensford, Idaho farm boy turned Los Angeles fluffer.” Billy looked at Charlie. “Charlie, this is Sven Zusky, an extraordinary artist who works in the field of living art.”
The man smiled, his teeth white inside his very blond beard, and walked toward them with his hand outstretched. A loud clacking sound brought Charlie’s gaze down to the hard wood floor and he blinked in surprise when he saw that Sven wore high heels and hose.
“It is very good to meet you, Charlie Heggensford,” Sven said, a trace of accent in his voice. He narrowed his eyes and inspected Charlie’s face, slowly drawing his gaze down Charlie’s body. “I have become intimate with Billy, so I know how his body looks. Would you mind disrobing for me to see your body as well?”
Sven looked him up and down, gaze lingering on his groin long enough to make Charlie shift his weight nervously. Finally, the man looked Charlie in the eye and smiled. “Very good. You may dress yourself.”
As Charlie dressed, he listened to Billy and Sven discussing him as if he was no longer in the room, though he stood just a few feet away.
“What did you think?” Billy asked.
“He is soft in some places, but I see that he works out,” Sven said, one finger tapping against his fur-lined lips as he also tapped the toe of a high heel. “Do you think he will agree to the arrangements?”
“Will you pay him the same you’re paying me?” Billy asked.
Sven waved a hand dismissively. “Yes, yes. Of course. The same amount for you both. But he must be committed to this. I will not tolerate disobedience.”
“Charlie’s very obedient,” Billy said, waving a hand toward Charlie but still looking at Sven. “He’ll be no problem.”
Charlie got his foot caught in the leg of his blue jeans and toppled over. He looked up to find the two staring down at him, Sven’s expression slightly concerned.
“He seems clumsy,” Sven said.
Billy shook his head, gazing sadly at Charlie. “I won’t lie, Svenster, that he is. Charlie’s clumsy in spades. But what he lacks in coordination, he makes up for in heart.”
“Um,” Charlie said from the floor, and held up a finger. “What, exactly are we talking about here? What kind of arrangement?”
“Art!” Sven shouted. He threw his arms wide and walked in a circle, heels clicking over the hard wood floor. “All of this empty space will be transformed into a work of art so vast, so sensual, so of the moment, that it will shove the art world off its axis.”
Billy looked from Sven down to Charlie, and Charlie could see a burning excitement in his friend’s eyes as Billy said, “Isn’t he amazing?”
“Um, yeah, sure,” Charlie said. He finally managed to shove both legs in his jeans and lifted his hips to pull them up to waist. He got to his feet and stood beside Billy, leaning in to whisper, “What does all that have to do with us?”
Sven swooped down to within an inch of Charlie’s face, his green eyes intense. “Everything. You, both of you, will be the centerpieces of my work. There are the things we don’t know about love, do you agree?”
“Uh…” Charlie said, flustered, embarrassed, and slightly, oddly, aroused by the man.
“Do you agree?” Sven demanded. “Yes or no?”
“Yes, yes, I agree!” Charlie shouted.
“Good!” Sven whirled away, waving his hands as he walked. “Imagine it: platforms with connecting ladders and bridges. All in white. Soft places set upon hard platforms. And living there—” He spun around and pointed at them, balancing so perfectly on his high heels Charlie found himself envious of the man’s poise. “You two. You will both live here, within my art, as the heart and soul of it.”
“Oh, okay,” Charlie said with a nod and turned to smile at Billy. “So we’ll just, like, come in when the place opens and, like, hang out on the platforms and do normal stuff?”
“No!” Sven shouted, and Billy echoed him with an equally loud and firm, “No!”
“Well, what then?” Charlie asked, nervously looking between them.
Sven crossed quickly to him, light on his heels, and leaned in close again. “Sex.”
Charlie blinked. “Pardon?”
“Sex.” Sven smiled, giggled, and looked between them. “You two will be living here for a week. Nude. All the time. How do the kids say it today? 24/7. And men will come by, step out of the depths of the crowd, and have sex with you.”
“Um…” Charlie blinked again and looked from Sven to Billy and back again. “Come again?”
Billy snorted a laugh. “Pretty much.”
“There are the things we don’t know about love,” Sven said, his voice calm and gentle.
“Yeah, you’ve said that,” Charlie said. “But, about the —”
“And you, my lovely muses, you will show the throngs of art lovers just what true love really is.” He moved away.
“Sex is love. Love is sex. And the human body is the canvas on which the beauty of it all comes to life. You will be the cornerstones of my work, of my greatest showing yet.”
“Wow, that’s …” Charlie stopped, at a loss for the right word. “Interesting. But, I’m sorry, I’ve got a busy schedule, and I don’t think I could spare a week to live here inside your, um, art.” He raised a hand and turned away. “Thanks, though, for thinking of me.”
As he headed for the door, Charlie heard Billy say to Sven, “Tell him how much you’ll pay him, Svenster.”
Sven made a disgusted sound. “You Americans. So focused on the monetary instead of the depth of feeling of art.”
“Just tell him.”
Charlie had his hand on the door handle, ready to pull it open, when Sven said in a bored voice, “$2,000.”
He stopped and, with his fingers still gripping the cool metal handle, turned to look back at them. “Come again?”
“I hope to,” Billy said, and laughed to himself.
“$2,000,” Sven said.
Charlie let go of the door handle and took a step toward them. “To live here for a week?”
“Yes.” Sven and Billy said together.
Charlie took another step closer. “In the nude?”
“And have sex on occasion with men you send in.”
Charlie stopped and narrowed his eyes. “Do I get to approve the men I’ll be having sex with?”
Sven narrowed his eyes as well, and took a step toward Charlie. “You can approve three quarters of them.”
Charlie frowned. “How many will there be?”
“Fourteen,” Sven said. “Two a day.”
Billy was good with numbers and said, “We get to approve ten and a half of them?”
Sven turned to look back at Billy. “One of them only with his clothes on.”
Billy looked at Charlie and shrugged. “What do you think?”
Charlie thought about it. He got paid to keep men hard and not make them come, lots of men. Well, there used to be lots of them, but the numbers of men he had been servicing had been dropping off because of the different erectile dysfunction medicines now so readily available. And here he was being offered a job for more than he would have made in a week as a fluffer, to live in an art house, in the nude, and have sex with a few men. In front of people. On platforms.
“I want mats placed beneath all the platforms,” Charlie said. “That’s my last request.”
Sven frowned and turned to look at Billy again.
“Clumsy,” Billy said with a shake of his head.
“Ah, yes. The fall to the floor while putting on pants.” Sven crossed the floor, his high heels clacking brightly, and extended his hand. “Deal!”
Charlie shook Sven’s hand and tried to ignore the flutter in his belly that told him he had just gotten himself into something he should have avoided. It was similar to the feelings he had had on the cruise ship to Acapulco, when he had been trying to figure out the mystery of the Latin twin brothers, or figure out who had been robbing pet stores up in Vancouver with Brent.
But he really needed the money and, as far as he could tell from his sticky notes back at the apartment, he didn’t have any work scheduled with Kinitia. He looked over at Billy and was somewhat comforted by his friend’s smile. Somewhat.
“Okay,” Charlie said with a smile. “When do we start?”
~~ * ~~
I’m sure nothing can go wrong with this art show! Until next week, and more Charlie fun, jump on over to the other Story Orgy blogs for more hot, smexy reads.
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