Let's Get Political
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Justin walked into the diner at 6:30 one morning. The place was almost empty, one lonely diner sipping his coffee over an empty plate of something he had just finished. Debbie was sitting on a stool at the end of the counter. In front of her lay a stack of papers and some ripped open envelopes.
"Hey, Deb," Justin said sliding onto the stool next to her.
"You're up early," she observed. "Where's your lesser half?"
"You better not let him hear you say that," Justin admonished with a chuckle. "What are you doing?"
"I'm reading my fucking correspondence," she proclaimed. Justin stared at her not comprehending what she was talking about. She sighed. "I have written to every fucking politician at every fucking level of government and all I get is a goddam runaround."
"Written to politicians? About what?" Justin asked picking up one of the letters.
"About gay marriage, of course. They are fucking going to recognize Michael and Ben's marriage before I'm through."
"Oh," Justin said not surprised by her vehemence although he had not been aware of her writing campaign. "So what do they say?" Justin scanned the letter in front of him.
"Ninety-nine point six fucking percent of them have sent me the same form letter thanking me for my interest and saying that they intend to do sweet fuck all about it. I'd much prefer if they told me to drop dead instead of these polite, meaningless epistles that don't even indicate that they ever read my letter." Debbie shook her head in disbelief.
"What are you going to do now?" Justin asked noting the kind of response included in the letter he had just read. Debbie was right. They indicated no interest. Politicians wanted to stay far away from this topic.
"I'm working with Senator Baxter trying to get some movement in favor of same sex marriages, but with what's in the White House things don't look good."
"How is Senator Baxter?" Justin asked. He had not seen her since she had helped him at that protest at St. James.
"Good as ever. Diane and I have stayed in contact. She supports the marriage initiative but has little hope of getting anything done in the state legislature until there's a change at the top."
"You mean we have to get rid of Bush?"
"Is there any doubt of that?" Debbie asked.
"How are you going to do that?"
"And you should fucking be helping! Some day you and Brian " Her voice trailed off as she thought better of what she was saying.
"You know how Brian feels about marriage in any way, shape or form," Justin said with a resigned shake of his head.
"He could change," she said softly, knowing that Justin always wanted more than Brian seemed to be able to give.
"Yeah, and the Earth could start revolving around the moon. Don't hold your breath."
"Even so, I think you should get involved. What good are we if we don't fight for what we believe in? I'm doing it for my son, but also for every other gay couple who wants to validate their relationship with marriage. They should have that option, even if there are others among us who don't want it."
Justin looked thoughtful for a moment. "I could send some letters by e-mail," he volunteered.
"That's my Sunshine," she smiled at him giving his cheek a gentle pinch.
He smiled and was sure he blushed a bit. Debbie always was the one to make him see rights that needed to be defended. She would take on anyone to do it too.
"I'm going to be part of Senator Baxter's delegation to the Democratic National Convention in Boston," Debbie said proudly.
"You are?" Justin asked the awe evident in his voice. He had no idea she had got into this thing to that extent. "How did that happen?"
"Diane said that I was so involved and concerned that she thought I should be there. She thinks there will be lots of other people there who think the same way. We can network and maybe put some pressure on the platform committee to take a stand. I would so much rather have Kerry run this fucking country than you know who."
Justin nodded. "That's awesome," he admitted glad that Debbie had a place to maybe make a difference.
"You know what," she said suddenly. "I think there's a couple of spaces left in Diane's group. Why don't you come to the convention with me?"
"Oh, I don't think I could do that," Justin said shaking his head.
"Why not? It's in the summer. You won't be in school."
"But I have to work on Rage. I'm supposed to go to California."
"It's four days in July, Justin. Do you want to make a difference?"
Justin looked sheepish. He would like to go but he knew Brian would throw a fit if he did.
"Are you thinking about the reaction of the Liberty Avenue stud to you going to the convention?" Debbie asked knowing him all too well.
Justin looked embarrassed. "Brian would totally flip out if I told him what I was going there for."
"Then don't tell him."
"You mean lie?"
"I guess that's what it's called. Tell him you are going to California for a few days."
"I can't lie."
"Then tell him what the fuck you're going to do. You have a right to your own opinions."
"But I'd rather have him eat my ass than chew me a new one when he finds out."
"So you're saying you won't go?" Debbie asked. The disdain was clear in her voice.
"I I I want to go," Justin said hesitantly.
"Then go." Debbie stood up and gathered up her letters. She put them under the counter and went to refill the coffee cup of the only customer in the place. Just then the bell above the door indicated someone else coming into the diner. Justin knew it would start to get busy from here on in. With a wave to Debbie he left. She had given him a lot to think about.
Brian and Justin sat across the table from one another, enjoying their dinner. Justin's mind kept replaying his earlier conversation with Debbie. He wanted to be truthful with Brian - he'd learned his lesson from past experiences. At the same time he was honestly worried at how Brian would react if he knew Justin was becoming politically involved in the same-sex marriage debate.
Brian knew as soon as he had entered the loft that "something" was going on. Just what that "something" was, was still a mystery to him. Justin had been uncharacteristically quiet and slightly reticent. In between bites, he'd glance across the table. On several occasions Justin was staring at him, appearing as though he were about ready to say something, but when hazel eyes locked with blue, the blond lost his nerve and quickly refocused his attention on dinner.
Brian found it amusing the first few times it happened, but now he was becoming slightly concerned. Obviously Justin had something that was very important to him to discuss, but was hesitant to do so.
Finishing the last bite of food on his plate, Brian swirled the remainder of wine in his glass, drank it, and picked up his napkin. He wiped his mouth. "That was good."
"Thanks," Justin nodded.
Brian chuckled, "Don't 'so what' me. I know there's something on your mind. Spill"
Justin stared at his plate and absentmindedly pushed the last bit of asparagus around, only stopping when he heard Brian's voice again. "Jesus Christ, Justin. What is going on?"
Justin put his fork down, took a deep breath and pushed himself back in his chair. He looked into Brian's eyes and silently willed the man not to jump to conclusions and overreact when he heard the news. "You know Debbie has been doing a lot of letter writing lately, to politicians."
Brian nodded and gave a 'and' gesture with his arms.
"She got invited to be part of Senator Baxter's delegation in Boston."
"Good for her," Brian said dryly, still unsure as to what the big deal was.
"She asked me to go with her."
Brian exhaled and allowed himself to lean back slightly he'd been expecting something a lot worse. "Oh, that's great!" Brian said sincerely.
Justin let his surprise show. "It is?"
"Yeah, I think it's great that you want to be involved."
"I wasn't expecting that."
"Why?" Brian asked with curiosity.
"I dunno, you just don't strike me as the politically active type."
"Did you forget Stockwell already? It wasn't that long ago."
"No, no I didn't, but that was different. Your involvement in that was, in some ways a personal thing, and not really a political one."
Brian couldn't argue. He hadn't agreed with the mayoral candidate's positions when he was working for him and trying to get him elected. "It was business, Justin," Brian said.
Justin nodded. "Anyhow, the convention is in July and I told her I'd go."
"Fine," Brian said, assuming that was the end of the conversation.
"Don't you want to know what issue Debbie was doing all the letter writing over?" Justin said as Brian began to get up and clear his dishes.
Brian snorted, "I'm sure it involved fags; it always does."
Justin gave a knowing smile, "In a manner of speaking."
Brian put his dishes in the sink and turned to face the blond. "Why are you being so cryptic?"
"It has to do with Ben and Michael," Justin said in hopes that Brian would figure it out on his own.
Justin shook his head from side to side.
Brian rolled his eyes; Justin was being a pain in the ass. "Tell me!"
Brian stuttered before regaining his faculties. "Fuck!"
"Brian " Justin responded.
"Justin, why are you getting involved in that nonsense? Fags don't need to get married."
"Maybe some do. Look at Michael and Ben."
"You know how I feel about this," Brian scowled.
"I know, but does everybody have to prescribe to your views?"
Brian thought for a moment wanting to reply that yes they did. "Are you saying that you want legalized same sex marriage?" he asked finally.
"Yes," Justin said deciding to be blunt.
"Is that what you expect for us?"
"It's an option that I want for everybody."
"When did you get so fucking rational?"
"One of us has to be."
Brian snorted. "How can I argue that we shouldn't have the same rights as everyone else? That's the same shit that Michael used on me to get me to stand up for him and Ben."
"You were the best man?" Justin asked in amazement. "You didn't tell me that."
"Just another one of my fucking little secrets. Don't spread it around."
"I can't believe you did that, but I'm glad you did. It must have meant a lot to Michael."
Brian gave an embarrassed grin and shook his head. "Nobody but the country of Canada recognizes the fucking marriage anyway."
"But that's why we need to change things," Justin said hoping he was making headway with Brian.
"Look I don't believe in marriage, never have, never will. But if you feel the need to fight for it then go ahead. I couldn't stop you if I wanted to."
Justin smiled. That was a nice admission from Brian. Justin knew he had ideas that didn't always coincide with Brian's. He liked to be able to state them and argue about them. And he could still hold them and act on them even if Brian didn't agree. He saw that as real growth in their relationship.
"Why are you smiling?"
"I was thinking about how you would react to this. I thought your head might explode."
"Disappointed that it didn't?" Brian asked with a smirk.
"Of course not," Justin replied moving closer and putting his hands around Brian's neck. "I think it shows real progress in our relationship." Brian didn't wince too badly at Justin's use of the "R" word.
"What are you doing?" Brian asked knowing this was not over yet.
"I was thinking "
"Always a bad sign."
"That maybe you could come too."
"I can always cum."
"Don't be obtuse. I mean to the convention."
"Are you fucking insane?"
"I could make it worth your while," Justin said nibbling on the soft spot at the base of Brian's neck.
"No fucking way!"
"Are you sure?"
" Yes," Brian replied allowing Justin's soft bites to have their desired effect. He could feel his cock growing hard.
"Can't I convince you?"
"No, but it might be fun to have you try," Brian whispered and he began to suck on Justin's earlobe.
After several rounds of fucking, the two men laid in bed, Justin using Brian's chest as a pillow as the older man gently played with the blond's hair.
Brian sighed; he knew that Justin would take one more stab at it. "Yeah?" he whispered.
"Come with me?"
"It's wrong, Brian. It's wrong. We're second class citizens. You remember what happened to Mel and Lindsay at the hospital? When Melanie couldn't go in with Gus?"
Brian nodded; Justin turned so he was looking directly into Brian's eyes. "It's wrong, Brian."
Brian agreed. Not because he believed in marriage, but because it was a fairness issue. Either everyone should get government granted rights or no one. Brian didn't speak; he stared into Justin's eyes for several minutes before leaning forward slightly and pressing a kiss to the man's forehead. "Get some sleep."
Justin sighed quietly and knew it was a futile effort. He closed his eyes and allowed sleep to overtake him.
Brian woke and went about his morning routine, eventually making his way to the diner for breakfast. He sat at the counter and hollered for coffee. Debbie approached with a steaming pot, flipped over the mug that was sitting before Brian and poured the man a cup.
"Thanks, Deb," Brian mumbled as he poured in sugar.
Debbie put the coffee pot back on the warmer before leaning against the counter and staring at the man.
"Yes?" Brian asked in a slightly annoyed tone.
Debbie wanted to know if Justin had mentioned anything about the convention to Brian, but she also didn't want to break the news if he hadn't. "How are you this morning, kiddo?"
Brian suppressed a chuckle; she was always so easy to read. "Yes, he told me. No, there is no way in fucking hell that I'm going and no, I don't give a fuck if he goes or not. He's a big boy and can decide for himself."
"Don't be an asshole, Brian," Debbie gently chastised. "That kid could bend over to tie his fucking shoe and you'd care. You know that, so don't tell me otherwise." Seeing that Brian was about to make a sarcastic comment she cut him off, "And don't give me any smart-alecky comment about how great his ass would look bent over."
Brian smirked, she knew him well. He took another sip of his coffee, not letting his eyes leave Debbie's.
"Aren't you going to say anything?"
"Good coffee," Brian said, hoisting the cup.
"Brian Kinney, you are the biggest fucking asshole this side of the Mississippi! You could learn a thing or two from Sunshine, if you'd only listen," she said as she turned away from him in a huff.
Brian finished his coffee, dropped some cash on the counter and headed to work.
By noon the next day, Brian had gotten very little done in the way of work. His mind kept replaying Justin's words from the previous night 'It's wrong'. Maybe it was Justin's youth and naiveté or maybe Justin had an uncanny ability to figure things out on the simplest level, but no matter how hard he tried, Brian couldn't get those two words out of his mind.
Out of curiosity he flipped through his calendar to see if the convention dates were free; they were. He only had one meeting that entire week, whereas the rest of the month was much more hectic.
"Maybe someone is trying to tell me something?" Brian asked aloud to the empty office.
Over the next few weeks leading up to the convention Justin tried a few more times to get Brian to agree to going to the convention with him. It was all to no avail. Brian remained steadfast in his decision to stay behind. He had his new business to look after and much more important things than gay marriage to occupy his time.
Justin tried everything from calm, reasoned discourse to wheedling to elaborate descriptions of all the fun they would have to mind-blowing sex. Well, mostly sex, but nothing worked. Brian refused every time. The sex, however, was very satisfying as Justin used every trick he had ever learned to try to sway his man.
Finally Justin gave up trying to convince Brian. He didn't say anything more about the convention or about same-sex marriage. He just let it drop as far as Brian was concerned. In the background he wrote his e-mails to congressmen and other people Debbie told him might be influential in making progress towards their goal. Overall Justin felt like he was wasting his time. He got responses from some of his e-mails, but they bore a strong resemblance to the letters that Debbie had received. Most politicians were avoiding this political hot potato.
The day before Debbie and Justin were to leave for Boston, Brian arrived back at the loft after work to find Justin with clothes and toiletries all over their bed. He held a pad in front of him and was checking off items on a list. He scratched his ear as Brian watched amused.
"What are you smirking at?" Justin asked turning to look at his partner.
"You concentrate so hard when you do anything," Brian observed. "That must be why you are such a great fuck."
Justin frowned. "Thanks, I think," he replied. "Although I'm not sure what my powers of concentration have to do with fucking."
"Focus, everything revolves around focus," Brian said tongue in cheek.
Justin smiled. "Since I'm talking to the master of focus, I'll accept the compliment." He gave Brian a little smooch as the man went by taking off his work clothes as he neared the closet.
"Is this your packing list for Boston?" Brian asked looking over Justin's shoulder and scanning the pad he held.
"Yep, I think I have everything."
"Where's the condoms and lube?" Brian asked.
"Briaaan?" Justin frowned. "I don't think..."
"You never know," Brian cut him off. "You might find a handsome stud among the same-sex marriage delegation."
"Here, pack it just in case," Brian said having fished the necessary items out of the nightstand. He tossed them on the bed with all of Justin's other things.
"Thanks, I guess," Justin replied. He knew they had an open relationship, but he never liked the cavalier way Brian treated sex. He wanted him to be a little more possessive, even though they were exclusive most of the time.
"I'm going to take a shower. Do you think you can shift all that shit before I get back? I want to fuck you into the mattress."
"Sure," Justin said his smile returning. "Is this my goodbye present?"
"I need to bank a few orgasms before you leave," Brian said with an evil grin and disappeared into the bathroom.
Justin looked longingly after him. He wished Brian would be more romantic even after what had happened with Ethan. He wished Brian was coming to Boston with him. He wished Fuck, he never got what he wished for, so he might as well resign himself to that fact. He started packing all his items into his suitcase. He'd make sure the bed got a good workout and that Brian wouldn't forget him while he was gone.
The next afternoon the Corvette neared the Pittsburgh airport. Justin and Brian glanced at each other. Without saying anything they both knew they would be sorry to be apart. They would miss each other. They did have memories of last night to tide them over though. Justin shifted in the seat. His ass was pleasantly sore, and he suspected that Brian's was too.
"What evil things are you thinking?" Brian asked glancing at Justin and seeing the look on his face.
"I was remembering last night," Justin replied.
"My ass is going to be tender for days," Brian said. "I should have brought a pillow to sit on."
Justin giggled. "Matching cushions would have been good."
They grinned at each other.
"You can drop me at departures and then go to work," Justin said a little sadness in his voice.
"I know you wanted me to come " Brian stopped, not adding the 'but' that Justin was expecting. "I'm going to park the car and come in with you."
"You don't have to do that."
"I want to do that," Brian said swinging into long term parking.
"Why are you going in here?" Justin asked. "Short term is closer."
"If you can find a fucking spot. We can park here and ride the shuttle. It will be just as fast in the long run."
Justin didn't argue, happy that Brian wanted to stay and see him off. Sometimes Brian did verge on sweet and romantic, verge being the operative word.
They made their way to Liberty Air looking for Debbie who was supposed to be there with Michael. Finally they found her. She had already checked in. Brian gave her a kiss and Michael one too.
"I wish you two were coming to Boston," she sighed.
"I have to run the store, Ma," Michael replied.
"I'm doing this for you and Ben," she replied.
"I know," he said. "I appreciate it, and your efforts too, Justin."
"Thanks," Justin said. "I better check in," he said dragging his suitcase over to the line-up.
Brian followed him. "I'll line-up with you," he said. Justin smiled thinking that Brian was really going to miss him. He was being so sweet today.
When they got to the counter the agent took Justin's ticket and typed the information into the computer. "You've been upgraded to first class," he said.
"No, there must be some mistake," Justin said.
"No mistake, Sunshine," Brian said handing the agent another ticket that he drew from his pocket. "We'd like to sit together," he said with a smirk.
"You're coming!" Justin gasped. "You shit! Why didn't you tell me?"
"It was a surprise," Michael said suddenly appearing with Brian's garment bag. "He's been planning this for weeks."
"I soooo love you!" Justin said throwing his arms around Brian's neck. "You soooo love me too."
"That's right, Sunshine," Brian said extracting himself from Justin's arms. "Haul that suitcase up here. We've got places to go and people to see."
Justin's grin threatened to split his face in half as he complied with Brian's instructions.
Boston was going to be fabulous.
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