As the elevator doors rattled closed behind us, I sagged against the brass railing and groaned. "Why do I do this to myself?"
"I was about to ask you that very question," Vence replied, staring out the glassed half-cylinder of the elevator down to the lobby below. As per regulations, he and I were alone in the elevator. "You do seem to be driving yourself far too hard for your own good."
I nodded, smiling tiredly. "Don't these people realize I'm trying to save their nearly ruined ecosystem? I mean, just lightening the load on their food production by six percent could restore millions of cumets per hour of oxygenating territory. They're going to die if they don't accept the offer."
"Shardik," my bodyguard began, "You should leave this sort of negotiation up to negotiators."
"Diplomats," I snorted. "I have no time for diplomats."
He turned to face me, leaning up against the brass railing, just as I was. "You don't have to do everything, Shardik. I don't expect you to be superhuman. I don't think anyone does. A century ago you nominated yourself as a representative figurehead, and I think it's time you went back to that role."
"Did Joshua put you up to this?"
"No, Sir, I put me up to this." The elevator seemed to sag as we came to a stop. The bell emitted a soft "ding!" followed by the doors opening. He led me out and continued as we walked down the hall. "You're a engineer, Shardik, not a diplomat. No matter what stance you may want to take, we do respect you for what you've done in the past and what you continue to do now as a member of the medical establishment. You're an ideas person, Sir, not an interactive person. And I suggest you leave it at that."
"No offense, Sir, but you are a poor diplomat. Your obsession with your homeworld is admirable but not helpful."
I stared at him in open, slack-jawed shock. "Vence-"
"You could have me fired, Sir, and that would be an enormous loss of respect for me. But you also have pride in your ability to take good advice from good advisors. Now, in real life I'm nothing more than a body that's supposed to insert itself between you and a potential assassin, but that also makes me a Satryl with an ear on everything you hear and say, and as a Pendorian I think you should go home and leave the diplomacy to diplomats. I think your coimelin would be very upset to see you burn out, especially at something you're not very good at."
We reached my hotel room on the seventeenth floor and I keyed the door with my card. I entered the room and Vence followed. "Why do I have to share a room with you?" I asked.
"You know I have to follow you everywhere. At least I will give you the respect of not watching while you shower."
I flopped down backwards onto the bed, exhausted and not willing to belabor the point. "I hurt all over."
"Take off your shirt, then."
That sentence surprised me completely. I raised my head off the bed and gave him a curious glance. "Excuse me?"
"If you're sore, I give a good backrub."
"Oh," I said. The more I thought about it, the more I realized that refusing to accept his offer was just plain foolish. I did hurt all over, and a rubdown, from anybody, would be damned pleasant right there and then. I sat up and took my jacket and shirt off, then crawled back up onto the bed and lay face down. Vence crawled onto the bed with me and straddled my legs, his broad hands pressing down against my shoulder blades. At first I tensed up; my experiences at Rhysh aside, I'm not used to being touched by males. Roughed up, pushed around, yes. Simple touching is different. It makes me uncomfortable.
But eventually I eased back down. Being tense was stupid; it wasn't going to do me any good to fight him. Besides, I had learned a little from Jahn and Borodir about my own sexuality, and I appreciated that Vence was just another person, one concerned for my well-being at the moment. I felt his hands encircle my shoulder and within the flexing grip of his hand he eased the strain and frustration out of me. I groaned under his expert massage. "You're right, Vence," I decided suddenly.
"About?" He didn't stop rubbing.
"You do give good backrubs. And I am killing myself over something I should hand over to others more qualified than I am." His hands eased their way down to the small of my back, and the muscles tightened in anticipation.
"You're ticklish," he observed.
"Very," I replied.
"I won't tickle you," he assured me. "Just close your eyes and relax." His hands firmly pressed against my back, easing away a day full of meeting humans in stuffed shirts more concerned with their appearances than with their prospects for a future life for their children.
"You know," he said as his hands spread across my back just above my belt-line, "This would be much easier if you took your pants off."
"Is that a hint?"
"It could be construed as one."
"You know, for a bodyguard, you're amazingly pushy with your clients."
He chuckled. "I'm still a bodyguard. I'm concerned for the state of your body right now. Now, are you going to take your pants off or not?"
I turned over and opened the clasp on the belt. A minute later I was completely naked. "There," he smiled. "That's better."
I grinned, a little embarrassed by his open appreciation, and turned over onto my stomach again. He resumed his position, working his way down my spine to my buttocks. "You know, you're still tense."
"I'm not used to being touched by males."
He stopped. "You're joking."
"Why would I joke about that?" I replied, mumbling into my pillow.
"Shardik, everyone on Pendor knows that you took four years at Rhysh very recently, and that your partner during your time there was most definitely male. In fact, as I recall, you were part of a very misogynistic group in Rhysh."
"That was while I was in Rhysh. The rules are different there, and I didn't have much of a chance to say 'no.' It was an experience I wanted. But in general, I'm not comfortable being touched by males."
"Sounds like a character flaw to me. You can commit the most perverse sexual acts with a male, but just a massage from one makes you tense?"
I nodded slowly. "That's about it."
"Very strange. Try to relax, Ken. You are a very handsome male. And you may as well know that I am andromanic."
"Does that mean bisexual?"
"I don't know if I'd call it that," he said, his hands spreading down my thighs. I parted them slightly. The feeling of his hands that close to my thighs surprised me. Why should I feel fear? That was ridiculous. Better that I should feel pleasure. Even if he were to rape me, it wouldn't....
Memories of my time at Rhysh came back to me. Of the bodily pleasure of lovemaking with a man, nevermind the psychic pleasure of being his plaything.
As his hands caressed my calves, I glanced down the bed and examined him closely. What was he like? Human, almost. With his pants on, he seemed precisely human until I got a look at his feet with their four-toed pads and thick covering of fur. Not to mention his tail whipping back and forth. A careful look at his neck showed the first signs of the fur that grew down his back and covered him below the hips, covered his feline legs in feline colors. His face was human, a round face with eyes that sparkled. A broad nose and a wide mouth, crowned with a trim mustache, gave him an interesting quality I found fascinating.
What was with me? "Character flaw," indeed. I knew that I could be blatantly sexual with another male. I had done it often... as part of a submissive and humiliating ritual. I had been "forced" to "enjoy" that kind of treatment. I had asked for it, reveled in it, in fact. As he massaged my feet, I looked back at him again. If I could handle that kind of treatment physically, and I understood that he was just another individual, no better or worse than any other individual except by is actions intellectually, why was it I didn't find him emotionally appealing?
I think I answered my own question right then. I was only asking these questions without a prompting because, I think, I already did. I knew, somewhere within me, that I had lust for this handsome Satryl, as it was obvious that he did for me.
"Ken?" he asked. I noted that, for the first time that day he had addressed me by my chosen name. I found it an interesting coincidence that he chose right then to do so.
"If you turn over, I can do the rest of you."
I thought about it for a few seconds, and then with trepidation turned over and tried to relax. I wanted him...
That phrase ran through my brain, sounding so alien and indistinct. "I wanted him." Did I?
"You're tensing up again," he chided, smiling down at me.
"Sorry," I said, laughing nervously. Dammit, I was quivering as if I were on my first date.
"You're really not taking this very well," he commented as his hands slid over my chest. "This is supposed to be relaxing."
"I have a lot on my mind."
"No, not really. You."
"Me?" he asked, surprised... but also amused.
"Yes, you. I'm finding my position untenable."
He chuckled softly and kept rubbing. "Tell me about it."
I did. I repeated my earliest experiences with Jahn, as well as the brutal but also intimate life I had in Rhysh for four years at Borodir's hands. And then I told him that I found him... interesting.
He laughed. "My Fah, what a lukewarm word!"
"What do you want me to say?"
He leaned over and stared into my eyes. "I want you to say to my face, Kennet, that you want me. That I turn you on. That I make you burn with lust."
"But you don't."
"I don't?" he asked. "Isn't that what you just said, though?"
"No, I said my curiosity was getting the better of me. If this is going to happen at all it'll be a while before I learn to feel lust for a figure like yours, Vence."
"Well, let's see where we can take this line of thinking. Tell me, Ken, would you like me to suck your cock?"
I looked around the hotel room, sure that it was bugged in some capacity, if only by someone bouncing a laser off the window, and was also sure that it was being recorded for posterity. "Vence, I would love for you to suck my cock."
He laughed and shifted down the bed, until he hovered over my soft penis. Pushing his hair to one side, he lowered his head and took the entire length into his mouth. I hissed softly at the warm sensations. I wanted to close my eyes and imagine a female doing that to me, but I thought that, in part, that would be pointless; I wanted to learn from Vence the experience of having sex... and just sex, not s/m, not playing around... with a male.
He was experienced at fellatio, at any rate; I found myself hard almost instantly, and his tongue made its way around my shaft, surrounding my erection with his wet warmth. I sighed. I wanted to play with his long, blond hair, so I reached out to stroke it. He didn't object, his head bobbing on my cock without a single pause. He was obviously enjoying himself almost as much as I was.
"Vence," I said, looking down at him.
"Hmm?" he said, turning his head just enough to peer at me through his hair with one eye open.
"Get your clothes off," I said. "If we're going to do this, let's do it right. Let's do it naked."
"Mmm-hmm!" he said, sitting up in bed and tossing aside his clothing. The formal layer went first, followed by the armor underneath. His chest was broad and very pale; at first I thought he just needed sun, but I realized he had a downy layer of white bengalese fur all across his chest. He smiled as he tossed aside the pants, equally as well armored underneath. His felinoid legs with the digitigrade feet were as muscular as his chest and arms. "You're staring."
"You're very handsome," I said.
"You say that as a heterosexual, or as someone who finds something exciting in what you see?"
"I'm not sure yet."
"Let's do something about it, then." He crawled up next to me and cuddled by my body. "Tell me something, Kennet. When you were at Rhysh, why play with males?"
"Because I didn't think any female could really appreciate what I wanted. They didn't really frighten me the way males did, and they didn't play the way I wanted to."
"But... how could you think of yourself as heterosexual, then?"
"Because I didn't think of what I was doing as homosexual. I was being... selfish. Manipulative. I was taking what I wanted from men who were willing to give it, but only in that setting."
"Yeah," I said, shifting my leg. I felt something hard against my thigh-- his cock. I nudged him gently with my knee. "Bring that up here and I'll show you how well Master Borodir taught me."
"Gladly," he chuckled. He straddled my chest close to my neck and pointed his cock downward with one hand, the other hand against the headboard for balance. I took his shaft into my mouth and down my throat with ease, sucking it down greedily, licking around it just as well as he had. He groaned loudly. "Fah, Ken, you are good."
I didn't say a word, closing my eyes and concentrating on his cock instead. I like sucking cock, I'm not going to be ashamed of that now. I liked sucking cock back when I was with Borodir; my only frustration once I had left Rhysh was that penises were attached to men.
Well, I was getting my fill now; I could feel my gag reflex rising and fought it off, enjoying the taste and feel of his cock going down my throat. I was frustrated; I wanted him to thrust and fuck my mouth, but he let me do all the work instead. My mouth tired and I rested my head back against the pillow. "Sorry, I can't keep that up forever."
"That's okay," Vence replied. "I almost never come from oral."
"Vence, I want you to fuck me." I almost couldn't believe I was hearing that phrase come out of my mouth, but there it was. And I did. I did want him inside me.
"Take me from behind, while I lie down." I turned over on my back as he shifted position behind me.
"How do you want it?"
"You don't have to be gentle," I replied.
He wasn't. He leaned down and in one easy thrust buried himself to the hilt within me. I gasped softly, taking his entire cock into my ass. He wasn't very long, not compared to Borodir, but he was still comparably thick, and it had been years since I had last had anything up my ass that wasn't a medical probe.
But the pleasure, oh, the pleasure was indecent. I thrust up with my buttocks to meet his hips, and he pushed me down onto the bed. "You're not Entalie'," he laughed as he thrust into me again.
"No," I gasped, clawing at the bedsheets in ecstasy. "I'm not. It just took me a long time to figure that out. Gods, it's been so long and it feels so good."
He thrust into me repeatedly, fucking me with that wonderful driving piston of his. We started to build rhythms as we fucked, but would lose them suddenly. Then he slipped out. "Whoops."
"Wait," I said, turning over. "I want to watch you." I grabbed my knees and, on my back, gave him complete access to my asshole. "Come on."
He grinned and drove into me again, fucking me like a wild animal. "Tighten up, dammit," he cursed.
I concentrated on tightening my hole, curling my toes in the process. "That's it," he gasped. "Oh, yes, that's it." He kept pushing; I could see he was tiring out. "I'm close, Ken... I'm going to... Urrryeah!" He thrust once more into me, deep and hard against my prostate, coming within me.
And then he surprised me. While his cock softened within me, he leaned over and pressed his lips to mine. I was shocked; I didn't even know how to respond at first, but eventually I remembered my manners and kissed him back, our tongues clashing between us like rapiers wielded by fools.
"Now have you changed your mind?"
I nodded, smiling. "Okay, you've convinced me."
He laughed. "Glad to hear it. You haven't come yet."
"Do I need to?"
"No, but it would be nice if you did."
"So, let me," I said, stroking my cock until it was solid again.
"Want help?" he asked.
"Sure," I said. He smiled and slid a finger into my already loosened asshole, pressing it against my prostate. I groaned, and he smiled.
He backed off and slid another finger in. "Want more?"
"I can take more," I said, smiling as I stroked my erection.
"You're getting more," he said, sliding in a third finger. I felt his thumb circle around my anus, and then he slid that in, too. "My Fah," he said. "Can you really take all of it?"
"Got any lubricant?" I asked. "I'll show you I can."
"There's some in my bathroom kit," he said. He disappeared into the bathroom, returning with a small white bottle and a towel. "Always gotta be practical," he smiled, sliding the towel under my butt. Moments later, he was slowly working all five fingers into me again, working his hand back and forth, slowly easing. "Slow down," I moaned. "It's been a long time." But as my orgasm came closer and closer, I found myself literally humping against his hand, trying to get more and more of it into my hole. I could feel my climax approaching, and suddenly I came, screaming to the ceiling as I did.
His hand slid out of me, but there wasn't much I could do. It had been so long since I had come like that I couldn't do much by lie on the bed and feel the aftershocks, literally uncontrolled tremors, run through my body. "Oh, my... Oh, oh, Vence. Thank you. Thank you so much."
He cleaned off my ass with the towel, and then his hand, before lying by my side and cuddling up next to me again. "You're very welcome, Sir. I hope you won't write me up for being impertinent and forward. I like my duty as a security officer."
I chuckled and tousled his long, blond hair. "We've gotten that stuff everywhere," I said, feeling it on my fingers."
"Yes we have," he replied. "That's not unusual. I like using a lot of lube. Once you've recovered, we should go take a shower."
"Sounds good to me. Oh, and Vence?"
"When you get out, call Joshua and tell him to get some professionals in here. Saving the world shouldn't be left to amateurs like me."
"Will do, Sir."