How They Met ...

The sun was setting on a balmy spring day, the kind where you want it to go on forever. Hugh and Patrick had made love in the late afternoon, and in the aftermath of their lovemaking, had looked into one another’s eyes and said I Love You. They had said it like when they first met, more than four years ago, when they could hardly keep their hands to themselves whenever they were alone in a room. They had said it with their lips and their eyes and they had known without a doubt that what they felt towards one another was real and solid and lasting. But they were neither of them to know that what they had come to believe as their version of perfect halves would soon be changed and that the rules of the game would be completely rearranged.

After a leisurely shower ...

After a leisurely shower, they had got dressed and taken a walk along the boulevard, where the wind blew softly in their hair and the glowing sun stretched into infinity. Their hands touched and held, broke apart when someone talked and used hand gestures, then fell to their sides again to casually brush against the other. Their current topic of discussion was where to eat, for both had worked up a formidable hunger and they were looking forward to a nice little dinner to round off a perfect day.

In the distance, a group of young men were playing basketball in the park’s public court. their shouts and whoops of encouragement clearly heard over rustling leaves, children’s laughter and gentle breezes. One of the players lost control when throwing a hard shot and it headed in the direction of Hugh and Patrick. A slight, blond man broke away from the others in pursuit of the renegade ball.

Both Hugh and Patrick jumped back as a large object was suddenly thrown onto their paths and a strangled cry of pain rang in their ears. Trained to react with speed towards all kinds of sports injury, Hugh recovered his senses much earlier and was already bending over the curled up figure on the ground, before Patrick realized what had blocked their way was actually a human body. Once that was determined, his doctor’s instincts took over and Patrick went into auto mode.

A few of the other players had come running up and were solicitously hovering over the groaning man. Patrick spoke in his ‘doctor’ voice, issuing crisp orders. “Its OK, I’m a doctor. Let me take a look at him. Can we have some space here please …? Hugh, can you please keep them ? ah … thanks.”

Kyler glanced up through a haze of pain, slightly dazed with his sudden fall. He looked skeptically at Patrick, unsure if he wanted a stranger touching him, doctor or otherwise. “It’s okay, I-I’m all right….I-I just…” he stammered, more to convince himself than the others. He tried to get up, felt the stinging pain in his left knee and was gently pushed back on his butt.

Patrick was holding his very clean handkerchief at the gash on the knee and saying serenely, “It’s a bad cut, but nothing that won’t mend. You’ll be all right, kid. Hey, you guys got a first aid kit?” He looked over at Hugh and mouthed “stop the bleeding”.

The young men looked at one another helplessly, and one of them said apologetically, “Sorry, we d..don’t have one …?”

Sizing up the situation, Hugh made a quick decision. “Right. We’ll take him back to our place and take care of that knee then, shall we? Its not far, come on, up you get now.”

Things seemed to move rather rapidly from that point on and Kyler soon found himself sitting in an unfamiliar room, under the care of two men he had never met before. He grimaced and turned his head, not at all interested in watching the doctor’s handwork in progress.

“There – all done!” Patrick announced cheerfully as he cut the suture neatly and began to gather up his equipment. “Keep that knee dry for the next couple of days, try not to bend or walk too much or the strain will burst the stitches. The rest of the lacerations are superficial, they look worse than they are, and should go off in about a week or so.”

“’kay,” Kyler mumbled, finally getting up his nerve to look at his injured knee. He stood up and took a tentative step forward only to experience a brief dizzy spell.

Hugh put out a hand to steady the young man and guided him back into the chair. “Sit! Here, drink this! All of it.” He stood over Kyler and waited till he had drained the cup of juice. “So, you live around here? Can you get home ok?”

Kyler didn’t give it much thought then, but if he had he would have been surprised at his willingness to submit so easily to the older men’s directives. He seemed to lack the wherewithal to even think for himself, finding it uncommonly comfortable to just ‘follow orders’. “Well, I’d call my Uncle Kipper to come and get me but he took my mom to the movie theater…don’t imagine they’ll be home for a while. I live on the road leading to the mine…just a couple of miles from here….it’s not too far…I walk it all the time, especially when the buses…” He trailed off, looking a bit shyly at the floor. He began to push himself up to his feet once again and concentrated on not falling over.

The soft spot in Patrick sprung to life; in Jade Heights Medical Centre, he was affectionately known as ‘Father Teresa’, for the way he tended to neglected children and collected lost souls. No way could he send this young man along when he was obviously still so weak and shaken.

“Well, my partner and I are just about to cook dinner. Why don’t you join us for a quick bite, and then Hugh and I will send you back to your place. It’ll be dark soon and I really don’t think you should walk 2 miles home.” He studiously ignored Hugh’s glower and patted Kyler on the back. “You’ll be fine! Just lost a bit of blood so naturally you would feel a bit heady. And besides, the buses have stopped now that it is after six pm on Sunday.”

Kyler glanced up at his two benefactors. He blinked as he took a closer look at them. Several years older than he was, they were both rugged and rather handsome in their own ways. He couldn’t quite decide who he liked more. Patrick, the doctor was a sweetie, and so gentle and patient. Hugh on the other hand sent his pulses racing. “I…ah … really don’t want to impose…..” Hell, he WANTED to stay.

Patrick saved him from further embarrassment. “You stay put in that chair over there – doctor’s orders – and just relax. Hugh, get him another juice, he needs the sugar, while I start the pasta.”

* * * *

Over the next month or so ...

Over the next month or so, Kyler often found himself looking out for the two men who had befriended him. He had been very attracted to both of them and that bewildered him some as they were both so different…in appearance, in personality, and in the way they treated him. He found himself wanting to spend more time with them.

They had been very open about their relationship. That is, Patrick had; Hugh wasn’t inclined to be quite as talkative. Kyler easily picked up on their happiness but still wished he could have met one or the other before they got together. Try as he might, he was unable to choose which as both men infiltrated his dreams at night and his fantasies during the day.

Finally fate took a turn and an opportunity arose for Kyler to see them again….well, at least to see Patrick. Okay, so maybe being rushed to the ER by his uncle was not the best way for this second encounter to come about. No sir! Needing an emergency appendectomy was not something he’d recommend to the faint at heart.

Patrick made his way immediately to the ER upon hearing the page; another emergency, another day in the life of a busy small-town doctor. He sailed briskly into the room and was quickly updated by the intern in attendance on the situation. An emergency appendectomy case; young Caucasian male, vitals strong but tumultuous…. Patrick’s eyes traveled over the moaning patient as the intern rattled off some statistics and suddenly it hit him.

“Kyler?” Patrick walked over and put a hand out to touch him. “Hey, it’s me; Patrick. I know, I know; you are in a lot of pain, but it’s going to be all right. We’ll take care of it, okay? You’ll need to go for emergency surgery, but this is very basic and I don’t want you to worry.” Patrick quickly went on to explain further about the procedure and then Kyler was whisked away to be prepped for surgery while Patrick went to scrub up.

A few hours later, Patrick packed up for the day and prepared to leave for home. As he headed out, he decided on impulse to check in on Kyler. It was certainly off his rounds and he usually didn’t check in on his patients at the end of his shift; although he might do so if it was someone he knew or if the circumstance was special. Shrugging to himself, Patrick supposed Kyler was rather special. He remembered the evening they had spent together after the basketball accident and what a good time they had had. A smile crept into his face. Yeah, definitely special!

Kyler lay quietly in the dimly light room, counting the ceiling tiles. He felt out of his depth in a strange place with strangers taking care of him. Fortunately, he wasn’t experiencing much pain as long as he stayed still, but his mom and uncle had left some time ago after a brief visit and he was lonely. He really just wanted to go home.

Caught up in his thoughts, Kyler didn’t hear someone entering his room. He glanced up when a man stepped up to his beside and smiled broadly when he saw it was Patrick.

Patrick was used to varying reactions from his patients, and so he was able to calmly acknowledge the blinding smile that met him as he entered Kyler’s room. He was a very attractive man and he had not been unaware of how some of his patients felt about him, both men and women. Flowers, cards, secret notes, and slips of paper with telephone numbers – he had received them all and took it all in his stride.

“So how are we doing?” Patrick asked as he came up to the bed. He picked up the chart automatically and flipped the page, scanning it quickly. “Good, good, I see you are doing well!” He smiled down at Kyler. “A couple more days and you will be fit to go home.”

“I was kind of hoping to go home tomorrow, but I guess following doctor’s orders is best.” Kyler grinned as he consoled himself to the longer stay with the realization that he would be able to see Patrick a few extra times.

* * *

Hugh leaned back on his elbows ...

Hugh leaned back on his elbows and watched as the two younger men kicked the ball around one another, and laughed like children. They were having a picnic by the lake; it was almost becoming a ritual with them in the last couple of months. Ever since Kyler had started hanging out with them, they had made it a point to come out to this lovely spot and have a picnic on the gentle slopes leading down to the lake on most Sundays.

A small smile touched Hugh’s lips as he watched Kyler giggling and chasing Patrick’s tail, sometimes keeping the ball away by foul means, tugging hard at Patrick’s t-shirt to prevent him from getting the ball. Knowing Patrick as well as he did, Hugh could see Patrick went easy on Kyler. Patrick’s slim form hid deceptively strong muscles. Patrick worked out religiously and always ate well, which was more than what Hugh could say for himself when it came to food. Hugh was fond of the rich foods and indulged occasionally, and especially when Patrick was not looking. Fortunately for Hugh, his highly physical job and life-saving activities prevented him from putting on the extra pounds. In truth, Hugh was every bit as fit as Patrick and his physique was excellent.

“Time out!” Kyler shouted as he ran away from Patrick and over to Hugh. He threw himself down next to Hugh and waited for Patrick to follow suit. “That was great fun but it sure builds up a thirst, Goy ay pop, Hugh?”

Hugh handed Patrick a bottle of water and a coke to Kyler. Patrick frowned at the coke, but refrained from comment. It was becoming a habit for Kyler to side with Hugh when they ate together or on the rare occasions when they shopped for food together.

Kyler popped the cap off the drink and drank down half of it in one go. “Man, I needed that,” he breathlessly commented as he pulled up the front of his t-shirt and wiped the sweat from his face. He smiled contentedly at his companions. These times he spent with Hugh and Patrick had become the high-points in his life. He sometimes felt the need to pinch himself to see if it was real. It still blew him away that the good doctor had suggested they get together again the day he was released from the hospital all of two months ago. Any questions he had of where all this was going were firmly pushed aside.

Patrick leaned back on the blanket and closed his eyes, one ear listening to Hugh and Kyler talk about some basketball game. It felt so perfect, the three of them together. He and Hugh had been together for four years and they have been wonderful years; he wouldn’t trade them for anything in the world. But with Kyler, it somehow made their interpersonal relations more interesting, more dimensional. Like now, Patrick found it immensely enjoyable to be able close his eyes and relax, while listening to Hugh’s animated discussion with the younger man. It was good to hear Hugh explain something to Kyler, who listened so attentively. It was good to hear their light-hearted banter, Hugh’s teasing, Kyler’s protests and laughter.

This feels so right, Patrick thought to himself. While he and Hugh had been a very compatible couple, he suddenly realized that Kyler’s presence complemented them into a family.

Patrick’s eyes flew open and he stared up at the blue sky.

* * * *

It was Saturday night ...

It was Saturday night and Hugh was stretched out on the sofa while Patrick sat in the big arm-chair. The television was on, featuring some reality show. Patrick usually surfed the channels but tonight he seemed absorbed in the program and the remote lay unmolested on the coffee table.

Hugh looked over at him and after studying him for a moment, asked quietly, “So you think Kyler is having fun without us?”

Patrick smiled without turning his head. “Um … I suppose. Friend’s wedding, good excuse to get drunk.”

Hugh pursed his lips. “Yeah.”


“He’s so young!” Patrick said. “I used to be excited whenever one of my friends got married. And now they all are, except the gay ones, that is.” He gave a dry chuckle.

Hugh made a soft noise in this throat, a comforting sound. The kind you didn’t have to give a response to if you didn’t feel like it. And then he said softly, “Patrick, he doesn’t have to spend every weekend with us. He’s got a life of his own.”

The silence stretched a bit longer this time. Finally Patrick took his eyes from the television set and looked at Hugh. “I was just kinda missing him. He is noisy and loud and I just realized he … well …”

Hugh swung his legs off the sofa and sat up. Then he patted the seat next to him. “Come here Patrick,” he invited gently. Hugh laid a heavy hand around Patrick’s shoulder and pulled him close. “I know, honey. He is like some missing piece of the jigsaw, isn’t he? I miss him too.”

Patrick stared hard at the floor. “You’re not jealous then?”

“Should I be?”

Patrick considered the question seriously; he owed it to their relationship to think honestly about the answer. Finally he looked up into Hugh’s eyes and replied. “No. No, you shouldn’t be. Nothing has changed between us, you are still my hero. I couldn’t live without you.”

Hugh kissed the top of Patrick’s head. “But it’s nice to have Kyler around. And when he isn’t, you feel a little sad. So do I.”

Patrick cleared his throat a few times before he continued. “I … don’t know if I can share you, Hugh.”

The arm around Patrick’s shoulder tightened. Patrick felt Hugh’s chest move with a deep sigh. “I think we are gonna have to figure this one out.”

* * * *

Kyler wandered aimlessly around the garden ...

Kyler wandered aimlessly around the garden, mingling with the other guests. He was still nursing the glass of champagne that had been handed him over an hour ago, taking a sip whenever a toast was proposed.

He had to admit the bride looked lovely and the groom, Bruce, only a little the worse for wear. Kyler had expected his friend to look a lot worse after the bachelor party last night. It had been a long evening of free-flowing liquor, rowdy music and foul-mouth debauchery; that is if Bruce’s making love to a lamp-post could be classified as debauchery. Kyler would have laughed out loud at the remembered sight had he not been suffering from such a horrendous hangover.

The young man experienced a moment of sadness when he spied his friends’ smiling faces. He didn’t for a second begrudge them their happiness even as he realized such would never be the same for him. Not, that as a gay man he could never marry. No, it was because he was madly in love with two men; both of whom were madly in love with each other.

Once again, the thought of leaving Jade Heights entered his head just as they had been several times over the last couple of weeks. He had even discussed the situation with his mother and uncle, who although not in favour of him leaving home stood by his choice to do so. It had even crossed his mind once to simply pack his belongings and take off for parts unknown. But he quickly realized how cowardly that would be and how very disrespectful and hurtful to two men who had shown him nothing but kindness. It was certainly not their fault he had been foolish enough to fall in love with them and was now paying the painful price.

Tomorrow, he would be having lunch with them and would tell them of his plans. However, he would not be confessing the true reason behind his decision. There was no way he could let them find out that the friendship they had so freely offered him had left him without a future here in Jade Heights . Besides, he’d rather die than experience their pity.

Kyler was jolted from his troublesome contemplation by the bride’s bouquet bouncing off his head and into the arms of the squealing young woman behind him. Shaking his head, he pulled himself together and returned his attention to the festivities at hand.

* * * *

"What are you making?" ...

“What are you making?” Patrick leaned across Hugh to peep into the pot. “Ouch!” he yelped as Hugh swatted his hand away.

“Go wash up, Patrick,” Hugh ordered, but with a smile lurking in his eyes. “Kyler should be here any time now, and if I know anything about how he spent last night, he should be starving with a probable hangover as well.”

“That kid drinks too much – and you encourage him!” Patrick said accusingly as he scrubbed his hands at the sink. Maybe it was through force of habit, but he always scrubbed his hands meticulously before and after meals.

“Of course I do not!” Hugh countered mildly. “What good is forbidding him to drink when you know very well he has easy access to it once he is not with us? Better to let him decide for himself, and for us to instill the right balance into him. I think what you are doing with him is grand, telling him about the consequences of over indulging and what harm it can do to his body. He listens to you, Patrick, that’s more than what most kids have these days!”

Patrick blushed a little at that; praise from Hugh was rare and hard to come by and he grabbed it possessively. “You are not too bad yourself.” Patrick said as he dried his hands on the dishtowel. “Kyler hangs on to your every word, did you know that? He is sports crazy and who knows more about sports and physical education than you?”

Hugh gave a crooked smile. “Well, it’s almost one pm, he should be here by now. Give him a call on his cell, honey. He’s not missed Sunday lunch with us in the last six weeks … the party couldn’t have been THAT good!”

Patrick was about to press his speed dial when they heard the crunch of tires outside and Kyler’s PT Cruiser drove up. Patrick went and opened the kitchen door, waiting on the stone step. He reached out and tousled the blond hair, then pushed him inside the kitchen. “Hugh made your favorite and I am starving!”

“Same here,” Kyler answered. “Hi, Hugh, something sure smells good.”

It was part way through the meal that Kyler dropped his bomb. “Ah, guys, I got something to tell you. Hmm, I’ve been giving the idea of moving to Vancouver some serious thought over the last couple of weeks. I’ve already talked it over with my mom and Uncle Kipper.” Kyler squirmed uncomfortably. This was just so hard.

There was a moment of pin-drop silence, as Patrick's jaw dropped and Hugh's face took on a rigid look. Patrick was the first to break the silence. "What? What did you say?"

"I was just telling you about my plans to leave town," Kyler recapped his announcement.

"I know what you said, we both heard you quite clearly." Hugh replied. "What we want to know is why this sudden decision."

"I feel like I'm spinning my wheels here in Jade Heights. I figure there must be more to life than working at the mine and trying to get a degree via correspondence."

Hugh and Patrick exchanged a quick glance, unsure how serious Kyler was. Shaking his head slightly, Patrick asked, "So what exactly are you going to do in Vancouver?"

"I thought I'd apply for courses at UBC. I'd get my degree faster that way."

"Thought?" Patrick raised his brows. "You are not sure yet?"

"Well, I have to look into a few things .... like finding a place to live and getting a job." Kyler was getting uncomfortable. He squirmed slightly and bit his bottom lip. He was fast running out of a viable explanation as to why he wanted to move on.

Patrick gave Kyler plenty of time to squirm while fixing him with an intense stare. "Kyler, are you just planning to give up your life here and move to Vancouver, with no fixed idea of what you are going to do, or where to stay?"

Seeing that Patrick was taking the situation in hand, Hugh picked up his fork and resumed eating, one eye still on Kyler, observing his expression and reaction. He was good at reading body language and he was beginning to form an idea of what was driving Kyler’s motivation. A quick nod at Patrick and Hugh remained silent.

Kyler missed the exchange between his hosts as he had his head down and was presently slowly rearranging the food on his plate. "All I know is, that at this point in my life I want a new start," he stubbornly stuck to his story.

"Uh huh," Patrick said, cocking an eyebrow. "Well, why don't we finish lunch, then we all go into the living room and talk it over? Hm?"

"If you say so, but there's not a lot to talk over," Kyler reluctantly went along with the plan while still pointing out the futility in it.
Hugh nodded his head. "Sounds like a good idea to me. In the meantime, Kyler can perhaps give this a little more thought? OK, Kyler?"

"I guess," he mumbled, mentally planning to do no such thing.

It didn't take long to finish up and all too soon Kyler found himself sitting in a large armchair facing his inquisitionists. He intended to remain tight-lipped, knowing from past experience these two men he looked up to were quite capable of talking him out of what he wanted to do.

Hugh handed out mugs of steaming hot coffee and sat down beside Kyler, thighs touching. Kyler tensed, but didn’t move away. He looked down, cupping his hands around his coffee, as Hugh began to speak.

“Kyler, why don’t you tell us the real reason you are thinking of leaving Jade Heights?” Hugh asked. When there was no response, Hugh continued. “We have known you for a good few months and in all that time, we have not seen any sign of unhappiness or dissatisfaction about living here. In fact, I would bet my last dollar that you are happy living here and lately, have quite enjoyed your time with us as well. You seem to like your course in school, you have plenty of friends and your mom and uncle obviously love having you near them. So frankly, we don’t quite buy your explanation for this sudden desire to leave us. Kyler, can you please look at me when I am speaking to you?”

Kyler slowly glanced up and looked the older man in the eye. He sighed out some of his frustration but refused to answer the question.

“Has anything happened lately to upset you, Kyler?” Patrick asked, quite gently.

Shrugging his shoulders, Kyler shook his head. He looked down at the mug in his hands to keep these two rather observant men from seeing the grief this conversation was causing him.

“Are you in any kind of trouble then,” Patrick said.

“No, of course not!” Kyler’s head momentarily shot up in surprise, vehemently putting to rest any concerns in that area.

“Well, then I am going to ask you this,” Hugh said, catching Kyler’s chin and forcing eye contact since Kyler had sought refuge in his coffee mug once again. “Kyler, tell us truthfully now. Are you uncomfortable with our relationship? Do we – Patrick and I – do we make you feel left out? Or second best?”

Knowing he couldn’t take much more of this awkward situation, Kyler opted for becoming a great deal more assertive. It was not something he was good at pulling off and as a result he ended up overreacting, big time.

“Look, you haven’t made me feel bad about either your relationship or our friendship. I-I just want what the two of you have….I just want to find a partner who will love me the way you guys love each other. But I can’t find that here in Jade Heights. Ya wanna know why? ‘Cause I’m already in love with someone who can’t love me in return.” Kyler’s voice was steadily rising as his anguish rushed to the surface. “I don’t want to leave…I just have no other choice.”

It was too much! Jumping up, Kyler slammed his mug down on the table causing the coffee to slosh over the sides. “So now you know…..hope you’re happy!” he stormed out the door, leaving two confounded men sitting on the sofa.

* * * *

The two men sat stock still ...

The two men sat stock still, mouths a little agape and stared at Kyler’s disappearing back. The kitchen door slammed and then there was the screech of tires and Kyler was gone. Hugh was the first one to move; he went into the kitchen and fetched a dishcloth, then calmly proceeded to wipe up the spilt coffee, saying wryly under his breath. "We are really going to have to address this temper tantrum business."

Patrick shook his head and asked, “Did you … hear what he just said?”

Hugh grimaced. “I did.”

“Did you have any idea he felt this way? About us?”

Hugh took a moment to sort out his thoughts. “Well, to be honest, I am not all that surprised. We have been spending a hell of a lot of time together and he is bound to feel something about us, for us. I mean, we both missed him last night just because he was away at a party. Why shouldn’t he miss us too?”

Patrick looked at Hugh, his gaze intent. “He mentioned love. He said he was in love with someone, and that it couldn’t be returned. I don’t know about you, but I am inclined to think he means one of us.”

Hugh raised one eyebrow. “One of us? Or both of us?”

Patrick cleared his throat before asking. “Tell me honestly, do you think he has a preference for either one of us? Has he ever shown in any way that he might like one of us more than the other? Or feel differently about you or me?” Patrick asked.

“No.” Hugh said almost immediately. “No, can’t say that I have seen that happening.”

“Me neither.” Patrick said, satisfied that they had such complete faith in each other that they were able to discuss this frankly without fear of rejection or jealousy. “So what are we saying, hm?”

Hugh chose not to answer, and instead asked, “How do you feel about Kyler, honey?”

There was a pregnant silence, and when Patrick spoke, his voice was thoughtful. “I have grown to be very fond of him. I don’t know how it happened but suddenly it’s like he is always a part of our plans. Like last night, I missed him, I really did. Wondering who he is with, what he is doing …” He raised his eyebrows at Hugh. “Did I hurt you with what I just said? “

Hugh came and sat down beside Patrick and kissed the side of his head. “No Patrick, you did not. “

Patrick kissed Hugh back, a soft lingering kiss on his mouth. “That in no way says my love for you has changed. You know that, don’t you?”

“I think I understand. I love you in the same way as I have always loved you, and yet, I also have grown to like Kyler a lot. In fact, I can’t imagine how I would feel if he were to suddenly disappear, be out of our lives. I would be terribly sad and disappointed if that were to happen.”

Patrick looked straight into Hugh’s eyes, a small smile playing on his lips. “So what are you saying, Hugh?”

There didn’t seem to be a need for words. Their eyes said it all. Both moved forward, their mouths met and they kissed deeply. They had been together for four years and they had had time to learn one another’s body and moves intimately. The kiss was sweet and passionate at the same time, and a little poignant as well. As if they were acknowledging the end of something and the beginning of something else, something they both felt right about. The kiss signified the start of a journey that they would both embark on, and sealed their commitment that they would do it together or not at all.

* * * *

They eventually found him ...

They eventually found him in the woods near his home.

Patrick and Hugh had made themselves wait for another hour before they took their car to go look for Kyler, giving themselves time to think and reconsider, and the option to pull back if either one so desired. Patrick would in fact have preferred to have waited a few days before taking this definitive step, but Hugh pointed out that it would not be wise to leave such a matter unresolved for a young man with Kyler’s temperament. Especially not with the way Kyler had stormed out, hurt and probably on the verge of despair.

“Right,” Patrick agreed, “I’ll drive. Where do you think he would have gone?”

“Let’s head out to his home by the mine, but drive past the bars. Just in case.” Hugh said, a little grimly.

Kyler lived with his mom and uncle on the outskirts of town in a compact, ranch-styled house. The house was set back from the road on a large tree-filled lot. There were several small outbuildings near the back of the property that was well maintained and pleasing to the eye of the passer-by. Hugh and Patrick had visited a couple of times in the past and had received warm welcomes both times.

They were nearing their destination, when something caught Hugh’s eye.

“There! Turn off that trek over there. I see fresh tire marks.” Hugh pointed as Patrick slowed down. “I thought I caught a glimpse of color over in that copse. Slow Patrick … don’t spook him.”

Patrick maneuvered his car slowly along till they both caught sight of Kyler's cruiser parked under the shade of a huge oak tree. They scanned the area but couldn't see him anywhere. "Let's go look around," Hugh suggested.

Both men got out of Patrick's 4-wheel drive and walked over to Kyler's cruiser. Seeing no one inside, they headed south, towards the lake, and once they turned a corner, they spotted a blond head.

Kyler was sitting on the bank of the small inlet, his feet dangling in the water. His slumped shoulders clearly showing the misery he was feeling. He glanced up at the sounds of someone approaching and anxiously looked around for an escape route. Quickly getting to his feet, he backed up as he saw the men coming closer. Not paying attention to what he was doing, Kyler fell backwards and landed in the shallow water.

Both Hugh and Patrick lurched forward as they watched Kyler sway. They watched helplessly as the younger man lost his balance and landed on his butt. Hugh reached him first, and put out a hand, saying with mixed amusement and concern. "Kyler! Are you all right? Here, take my hand."

Kyler hesitantly reached for the offered hand. 'Why are they here? What do they want? Don't they know there's nothing left to say?' he thought in despair.
Patrick had run up by then and he too held out his hand and grabbed Kyler. Together, they easily pulled Kyler out of the water, dripping wet. "Jesus!" Patrick grumbled, touching Kyler carefully to check for sprains or cuts. "The water is freezing. You are going to catch a cold if you don't get out of those wet clothes."

Hugh was already pushing Kyler back up the trek that led to their cars. He spoke to Patrick over Kyler's head, noticing the beginnings of chattering teeth. "I think you've got spare clothes in your trunk? Let's get him changed. He should be able to get into your stuff."

Patrick nodded and ran ahead to get his overnight bag out of the trunk. He always kept a spare set of clothes for emergencies at the hospital.

Kyler blinked. He had no intention of stripping off in front of these men, regardless of whether one was a doctor or not. "No way!" He pulled away and started towards his own car. "I can take care of myself.....just leave me alone!" he shouted.

Hugh easily pulled him back, and when Kyler resisted, he turned him sideways and landed a stinging swat on his wet behind. The smack rang out loud in the little woods and Patrick looked back at them in some surprise.

Hugh ignored both Patrick's raised eyebrows and Kyler's indignant protests as he continued to drag Kyler towards Patrick, who was taking a t-shirt and sweat pants out of his bag. "Kyler," Hugh said, warningly, "Stop behaving like a kid. Right now!"

With his backside stinging and his protests being ignored, Kyler settled for glaring at the older man. "You have no right to do that.....and I'm not behaving like a kid. I-I ...." He couldn't say more. He was fighting to keep other emotions in check....emotions that were fast overwhelming him and causing his eyes to smart. 'For God's sake,' he silently admonished himself, 'don't you dare start crying.'

Patrick pulled out a small towel and walked towards Kyler. He noticed the smarting eyes and trembling lips and he too glared at Hugh, before turning to Kyler. "Come on Kyler, you need to get the shirt off. Here, use this to dry yourself. There you go." The shirt came off, and Kyler grabbed the towel and began patting himself dry. The next part was a bit trickier, especially with Hugh standing here, watching with his arms folded across his chest.

Hugh noticed Kyler's hesitation in removing his soaking pants and he said with exasperation. "Oh for heaven's sake, Kyler. Will you just get it done so that we can sit down and talk? Take those damn pants off and put the sweats on. Stop stalling, your teeth are chattering and I don't want to see them turn blue."

Kyler turned his back slightly and obeyed the order as quickly as possible. Once finished and admittedly, at least to himself, feeling better, he asked with a pout, "Happy now?" He handed the wet towel back to Patrick with a softly mumbled 'thank you' and stood with head bowed, waiting for whatever was to happen next.

Hugh smiled, and threw an arm around Kyler's neck, pulling him close. "Yes, I am happy now, thank you!" It was by no means the first time he had done that; in the last few weeks, Hugh had made a habit of making physical contact with Kyler and neither of them had thought anything of it. But this time, Hugh felt Kyler stiffen.

"Oh no, you don't," Hugh said when he felt Kyler pulling away. "Come here, you." He was much stronger than Kyler and he easily overpowered Kyler's attempts to escape. Hugh bent his head and dropped a quick, light kiss on Kyler's damp hair, before letting him go. "Go on, brat. Get into the car and we will talk. I wish we had a flask with us, but you'll have to make do with our body warmth."
Patrick had wrung out the wet clothes and had put them all back into his trunk, together with his bag. He opened the car door and motioned for Kyler to get in. He too planted a kiss on Kyler's head and he managed to whisper in his ears, "It'll be fine, ok?"

Kyler glanced from one man to the other, his expression one of bewilderment. They had never been this demonstrative before and he wandered what, if anything, had changed. Instinctively reverting back to the trust he had developed in them over the past several weeks, he meekly did as he was asked and slid into the car.

Hugh went around to the other side and got in, sandwiching Kyler in between him and Patrick in the back seat of the car. It was a roomy family car but they were all big men and they fit rather snugly in that confined space.

There was a moment of awkward silence, then Hugh began to speak, gently. "Kyler, let's get one thing straight upfront - you are not moving away to Vancouver."

"Oh?" Kyler softly responded while once again looking back and forth between the two older men. "You care to explain that further?"

Patrick gave a small grunt of admonishment, directly mostly at Hugh, and said pointedly, "What Hugh means is we don't want you to move away. We've been talking since you left our house, and we've thought over what you said to us earlier."

"Hmm, well...." Kyler shifted uncomfortably as he felt his cheek grow warmer. "I'm sorry for storming out and all. I didn't mean to lay all that stuff on you." He closed his eyes and hung his head, fervently wishing he was anywhere but here. He didn't want their pity.

Patrick laid a hand on Kyle's knee and squeezed it sympathetically. "Hey, we know it must have taken a lot for you to come out and say all that. And we are GLAD you did, really .. I mean Kyler, we realized after your 'outburst' that we love having you spend time with us, and we miss you when you aren't around. And the fact is we would be ... lost without you .... we've come to look upon you as one of us. Do you know what I mean?"

"One of you? As in more that a friend or maybe as a kid brother?" Kyler felt he was grasping at straws and he desperately needed clarification. He had know idea where they were headed with this conversation but a brother was not what he wanted to be… way!

Hugh snorted from his corner of the car. "No, not quite as a kid brother." He sighed, and exchanged a look with Patrick. This was turning out to be not quite so easy after all. "Kyler, you said you were in love with someone. We both think you are talking about one of us, or both of us. Is our assumption right?"

Kyler blushed and deciding to be up front, regardless of the cost, nodded his head. "Yes, I meant both of you." He sighed deeply, surprised at how relieved he felt now that it was out in the open.

"Good," Patrick said, a smile lighting up his face. "That was what we wanted to hear."

Hugh reached out and tousled Kyler's hair, then took one of his hands and brought it to his lips. "Kyler," he said, "Patrick and I would be very happy if you would consider being a part of our lives, as a partner to both of us.” He turned Kyler's palm upwards, dropped a kiss on it, and then put it gently back on his lap.

"Really?" Kyler squeaked, his eyes widening in disbelief. "So it's all right? You're okay with me being in love with you? Both of you?”

Patrick and Hugh laughed at Kyler's excitement and enthusiasm, thoroughly enjoying the reaction of the younger man. They each leaned forward and hugged him in turn, and then Patrick turned Kyler to look at him and said seriously. "Look Kyler, we know this is kinda sudden, so before you say anything, or jump into any kind of decision, we want you to take some time to think about it."

“Yes! Yes!" Kyler joyously repeated. "I want so much to be a part of your lives, to share what you have with each other, and to just not have to leave you after we've spent a few hours together."

Hugh nodded his head, in total agreement with Patrick. "That's right, Kyler. Much as Patrick and I want you to be a part of our lives, we don't want you to make any decision without first thinking it through thoroughly. So we are suggesting you take one week - yes, one week - and we will have another discussion next Sunday. Can you do that?"

Kyler reluctantly nodded his compliance. "And I guess I should talk it over with Mom and Uncle Kipper. Shouldn't be a problem though, as they really like you both. Then again, it may take them a bit of time to get their heads around the threesome thing." He grinned up mischievously. "In fact, bet they won't be the only ones who'll have to get used to the idea."

"Ok then," Hugh said, with another quick hug for Kyler, "let's get you home safely."

Patrick and Hugh walked Kyler over to his car and they both turned to face Kyler. Their expectations were clear; they wanted to kiss Kyler goodbye, their first kiss. It would be their first ‘real’ kiss.

* * * *

The following weekend ...

The following weekend couldn’t come soon enough for Kyler. The week seemed to have dragged on forever. He had talked to his family and yes, he had guessed correctly. A ‘threesome’ concept was not something his mother or uncle had actually considered before. They weren’t comfortable, but after voicing their misgivings but not harping on them, they put Kyler’s happiness first and granted their blessings.

Sunday morning finally arrived! Kyler was up early and eagerly getting things ready at his end. He tried to imagine how the day would end as he drove to Hugh and Patrick’s home a short time later. They were having breakfast together.

"I'm here!" Kyler hollered as he bounded through the back door and into the porch.

The kitchen door was flung open and Hugh stood there with a crooked smile on his face. He waited until Kyler had come up the few steps; then pulled him close for a quick kiss. He saw the flicker of shyness in Kyler’s eyes. ‘Well, he had better get used to that happening a lot,’ the older man thought.

Patrick was laying the table and his face brightened up as Kyler came into the kitchen with Hugh’s arm around his shoulders. “Hey there,” Patrick greeted him warmly. “Come here, you.” Just as Hugh had done, Patrick pulled Kyler forward and kissed him on the mouth. “Hmm, you taste good,” he commented softly before letting Kyler go.

Kyler was quickly discovering he liked this hugging and kissing stuff. He grinned broadly at the two men before glancing around the room and deeply breathed in the tantalizing aromas. "Hmm, you guys sure know how to make a man's mouth water."

Patrick had cooked scrambled eggs, sausages and toast. The rich aroma of brewed coffee filled the kitchen. They took their seats and ate silently for a while, which was unusual as they usually had lots to chat about over a meal.

Kyler had a voracious appetite. His mother always complained that he must have a hollow leg but he insisted he only appreciated good cooking. He swallowed his last bite and sat back to enjoy his coffee. "So, do we have any plans for today?" He knew they did but didn’t want to appear overly eager.

Patrick laughed and slapped him playfully on his back while Hugh grinned widely at him. Patrick got up and said to the other two men. “Since I fixed breakfast, you two can wash up. I need to go finish up a report in the study. It won’t take long. Then we can have that talk of ours, okay?”

Kyler began gathering up dirty dishes and stacking them in the sink. “My turn to wash,” he announced as he squirted the dish soap into the water and watched the bubbles rise. “What all do we have to talk about, Hugh? Are you guys changing your minds?” He suddenly felt uncertain.

Patrick chuckled softly to himself and headed towards the study, leaving Hugh to deal with their young friend.

Hugh watched Patrick’s departure with a shake of his head and turned back to Kyler. “We are supposed to talk about our proposition to you and we will, just as soon as we finish cleaning up here.”

Kyler couldn’t stop the small groan of frustration from escaping. He had tried several times over the past week to bring up this very subject, but had been told he had to wait. Waiting was definitely not something he excelled at. He turned back to the chore at hand and took out his aggravation on the plates and mugs in front of him.

“Kyler?” The tone was mild enough but it made Kyler pause. For some reason, Hugh could always do that to him. He glanced sideways at the older man. “It’s just hard sometimes to wait for things, especially mega important ones,” he softly mumbled his excuses.

“I know, sweetheart,” Hugh said as he came to stand very close to Kyler so that their bodies were touching. He gave Kyler a quick hug. “But there’s a time and place for everything and I want you to be patient and do things properly. And right now, it’s time to get this kitchen cleaned up so that we can get to that ‘mega important’ subject you are so excited about.” Another kiss landed on Kyler’s head.

Kyler melted against the bigger man and resolutely accepted both the hug and the explanation. “I’ll try, but no promises.” He grinned cheekily up at Hugh and laughed when Hugh rolled his eyes.

They went into the living room when they were done and sat down to wait for Patrick. Hugh never disturbed Patrick from his work if he could help it, and vice versa. They were both mature individuals and treated one another with respect and consideration. However, domestic life as they know it would be significantly changed if they were to add in another partner, so now would be an opportune time to discuss some of their expectations and perhaps house rules as well, in order to maintain their domestic harmony.

Kyler used the opportunity to snuggle up to Hugh as they waited for Patrick. He was unaware of already beginning to conform to what would become ingrained habits as time moved on. He instinctively took the cue from his would-be partners; they were not to be disturbed while working in the study.

“All right, all done,” Patrick announced as he came back into the room. His brows went up as he saw Kyler half-sprawled on Hugh in the sofa. He stopped a moment to do a mental check and was both glad and a little surprised that he felt no jolt of jealousy. Instead, he found the sight rather pleasing. “Do you guys want a drink or something?”

“No! No! No!” Kyler jumped to his feet. “You guys have kept me waiting long enough. No more stalling. I’ve done all the thinking I’m going to and if you two have as well, then let’s talk and get this show on the road.” He stood with hands on hips glaring from one to the other. He fully expected their co-operation in this matter.

Hugh and Patrick stared at him in silence. They had not seen Kyler in this mode before and they were a bit taken aback, but decidedly pleased nonetheless. In fact, Hugh was trying hard to hide his smile. He liked a partner with some spirit and spunk.

“All right,” Hugh said easily, pulling Kyler down beside him on the sofa. “Sit down and we’ll talk. Patrick, sit!”

Patrick grinned and sat on the chair opposite them. “So, Kyler, have you thought about our proposition?”

“Yeah, I’ve been able to think of anything else all week,” the younger man scoffed. “And not letting me see you guys for a whole week? Geez … thank God we could talk on the phone every night, or I would have gone crazy! Although I still say it was a dumb idea to keep us physically separated so we could think more clearly.” He grumbled this particular complaint for the umpteenth time. “Cause I already knew my answer last Sunday,” Kyler smiled; his sunny nature once more coming to the fore. “Like I said then, I would really like to be a partner to both of you. I’d like nothing better than to be a part of your family. And, just so you know, my Mom and Uncle Kipper are all for it too.”

Kyler chewed on his lip for a second or two, suddenly turning serious. “I realize any new relationship will have its’ ups and downs…Mom told me so; and that one such as ours could prove an ever harder go. Guess maybe now’s as good a time as any to kind of discuss expectations and stuff.”

Hugh nodded and said, “I couldn’t agree more with your mom, Kyler. Life as a threesome can be difficult to balance so it is important to set up a structured relationship we can all live in.”

“Soooo, how do we go about structuring ours?”

“Well, Patrick and I have some established rules, more agreements actually. For a start, basic honesty is required. We do not lie or keep secrets from one another. Well, apart from surprise parties and stuff like that. But you know that is different, right?”

“Of course, I know the difference.” Kyler couldn’t believe someone would ask him that.

Patrick playfully tweaked Kyler’s ear. “Behave! Which brings us to the next item; respect. We observe common courtesies and above all, respect for one another. It’s easy to start a fight but damn hard to take back what we have said or reverse what we have done. So we must make sure our speech and actions are as well thought out as possible.”

Kyler nodded his agreement and grinned at the two of them. “I can do respect. My mom taught me manners.”

Hugh continued. “Good! Not that I want to be anal, but I also expect us to keep the others informed if we are going to be late or going out by ourselves or anything out of the norm. Again, it’s just basic manners and courtesy; especially important for us, now that there are three of us. We do not want our partners worrying or waiting up for no reason. Okay?”

Patrick reached out and touched Hugh lightly on the thigh. “I am the guilty one here most of the time. My work can be very unpredictable and sometimes I find it hard to let Hugh know when something has come up, like an emergency. Hugh is okay with that but he grumbles if I forget to call when I can.”

“Hmmm, more forgiving with you being a surgeon and all, but I better make sure to have my cell phone charged and on me at all times. And I can do that, it’s not a problem.” Kyler assured them of his understanding and acceptance of their expectations. Holding up his hand, he counted on his fingers; “One: honesty, two: respect, and three: communication. Got it!”

“That about covers it, Kyler. You ready for the commitment?” Hugh asked while Patrick smiled encouragingly at him.

“So, is it a done deal yet? Can I move in soon?” Kyler’s eyes were sparkling, his young face radiant with joyful anticipation. It was all he could do not to bounce up and down on the sofa.

Patrick and Hugh raised their brows and then burst into laughter, Kyler’s enthusiasm finally catching on.

“You can move in as soon as you get your stuff in.” Hugh replied.

“How much stuff do you have?” Patrick asked. “We’ve actually cleared some space for you in the wardrobe and guess what, we’ve even ordered in an extra chest of drawers. So when would you like to move in, Kyler?” Patrick asked.

Kyler jumped up excitedly. “Today! I’ve already got the first load of stuff in my car. How’s that for planning ahead?” He laughed mischievously as he ran towards the back door, thrilled at having out maneuvered them.

* * * *

It had been a busy, fun-filled day ...

It had been a busy, fun-filled day. The move had gone smoothly and the three men had gone out to dinner to celebrate the start of their new relationship. Now they were getting ready for their first night together.

Patrick had turned on the shower and he took Kyler by the hand and led him into the huge shower stall, with Hugh following close behind. All three of them were stark naked. Kyler had looked a bit awkward when they had stripped off in the bedroom. Hugh and Patrick exchanged a look and quickly reminded themselves that Kyler had never actually been naked in front of them before, and neither had he seen them naked.

As Patrick drew Kyler into a kiss, Hugh began to rub soap over Kyler’s back and softly inquired, “Sweetheart, have you had anal sex before?”

“Huh?” Kyler’s cheeks turned red and he looked over his shoulder with a quizzical expression on his face. “Ah, no....does it matter?”

“Yes, it matters in how we make love to you the first time,” Hugh explained, planting a light kiss on Kyler’s wet shoulder.

Hugh massaged his shoulders and slowly brought his hands down Kyler’s soapy back until they reached the top of the curve of his pert little bottom. He kneaded them slowly for a while, before slipping down slightly and in between Kyler’s cheeks.

Kyler closed his eyes and relaxed into the massaging hands. He blinked when he felt fingers probe the cleft between his lower cheeks, then pushed back against them.

Hugh’s movements were hypnotic, his fingers blunt and firm. He continued to massage and tease the area, and then brushed against Kyler’s puckered opening. He smiled as the younger man gasped and with a sureness that spoke of practice, he inserted one slippery finger into Kyler’s body.

Kyler’s breath caught as he tightened his hold on Patrick and pushed back against the probing finger.

Hugh continued to slide his finger in and out of Kyler’s opening, while he reached in front for Kyler’s cock. He found Patrick had already wrapped a hand around the rigid member and was slowly masturbating their new lover.

Patrick broke off from Kyler’s mouth and leaned forward, meeting Hugh’s easily over Kyler’s shoulder. They were a mass of limbs and mouths, hard and breathing heavily.

Kyler put his arms in between himself and Patrick and tried to get a little breathing space. He wanted to participate, to kiss and be kissed by both his new partners. He also was turned on by them kissing each other. Finding enough room to maneuver in, he turned sideways and began to tease first Hugh’s nipples with his tongue and then Patrick’s.

After a few more thrusts with his finger, Hugh slowly withdrew. He turned Kyler around so that he could kiss him properly on the mouth.

Kyler eagerly returned the kiss while his fingers continued the tantalizing work his tongue had started.

Patrick pressed into Kyler’s back and planted little kisses on the base of his neck and shoulders. He reached down to Kyler’s buttocks and like Hugh, began to play with the smooth round half-moons. Then he began to part those cheeks and slid a finger in, picking up from where Hugh left off. Patrick felt Kyler relax and introduced a second finger into the tight opening, feeling the resistance and hearing a hiss of breath leaving Kyler’s body

Kyler tensed slightly at the added intrusion but was relaxed again within seconds as his passion grew with each thrust from Patrick and kiss from Hugh. By now, all three men were rock hard and breathing hard as well.

Hugh ended the kiss with Kyler and reached for Patrick. They embraced as their hands found familiar spots and they touched one another with easy familiarity.

Then Patrick dropped to his knees and swallowed Hugh, taking almost the entire length of Hugh’s massive cock into his mouth. He sucked hard as Hugh threw his head back and closed his eyes, bracing himself against the wall for balance.

Kyler watched mesmerized. He didn’t think he could get any more turned-on as he reached for his erection and began pumping.

Hugh opened his eyes as he heard Kyler’s moans and he rumbled with gentle laughter as he stopped Patrick and pulled him up. He grabbed the shower head and sprayed water over both his partners. “Kyler, stop now. I don’t want you to cum yet.”

Patrick began to rinse off Kyler’s hair. “Let’s get into the bedroom, shall we?”

Kyler found himself complying. It seemed perfectly natural that these two experienced men would assume the lead. It didn’t prevent him from exhaling a breath of frustration though at not being able to finish himself off. He stood patiently while being rinsed off, then quickly stepped out of the large shower stall and grabbed up some towels, handing one to each of the others.

Hugh and Patrick gently patted Kyler dry, enjoying petting and spoiling their new partner. They made sure they got all the parts, even those that made the young man squirm and laugh. When they were all dried off, they went into the bedroom. The bed had been turned down and the lights were dimmed and the room looked terribly inviting.

Suddenly, Kyler felt in over his head. Not knowing what was expected of him, he held back. His thoughts swirled with the fear of not being able to satisfy these men he loved, of failing them in some way. He glanced uncertainly from Hugh to Patrick and then back to Hugh.

Seeing the young man’s trepidation, Hugh stepped up behind Kyler, put a hand on each shoulder and gently but firmly steered him over to the big bed. “It’s going to be fine, sweetheart,” he softly assured the nervous man as he physically encouraged him to lie down between himself and Patrick.

Hugh knew his and Patrick’s first responsibility was to carefully guide Kyler through this sexual initiation, to help him relax and patiently reassure him that he was doing well. None of this was to be rushed in any way.

Once safely hemmed in by his partners, Kyler’s insecurities lessened and he gave himself up to their doting and knowledgeable care.

Hugh gently entered Kyler with one well-lubed finger, waited for him to adjust to it and unhurriedly added a second while Patrick massaged Kyler’s erection.

Kyler had known the pleasure of masturbation since puberty and he now associated it with anal penetration. When Hugh’s fingers brushed his prostrate for the first time, Kyler gasped in surprise and ecstasy. He clung to Patrick’s shoulders and moaned out his frustration when they brought him almost to the point of climaxing, only to slow down and make him wait.

When Hugh felt Kyler was ready, he withdrew his fingers and after applying a liberal amount of lube to Kyler’s opening, placed his thick condom-covered penis against it. He slowly and gently pushed only the head into Kyler’s body and allowed time for his young partner to get used to the feeling, before completely embedding himself.

This entire time, Patrick was murmuring a loving mantra of encouragement. “You are so beautiful, babe; so hot and sexy.” He smiled over Kyler’s head and reached across him to adoringly rub his hand over Hugh’s upper torso.

Kyler tensed at the invasion. His breath caught at the unexpected pain and his first thought was to ask Hugh to stop, but his partners’ soothing hands and voices soon calmed him and he surrendered to the overwhelming sensations of absolute rapture.

Minutes later, Kyler actually wailed his objections to Hugh slipping out of him. He was momentarily confused when he felt himself being dragged over Patrick’s body, but he settled once he was positioned so his second lover could spoon around him. He tensed, and then hissed as Patrick’s hard penis unhurriedly slid into him. This time, it wasn’t quite so bad and he felt is body accepting the intrusion more easily. As Patrick moved into him again and again, he thought, ah this is nothing short of sheer heaven.

A heartbeat later, Hugh had changed condoms and was behind Patrick, somehow spooning him, preparing him, and then without further preamble, smoothly entered him. Hugh’s gentle thrusts quickly became more urgent, as he heard Kyler’s cries and he felt Patrick reaching his climax. Hugh’s balls tightened, and then he was shooting inside Patrick, feeling Patrick shudder in his arms, and then Kyler was gasping for breath as he came for the first time with his lovers.

* * * *