I'm not crazy....I am crazy....I have to be crazy....why the hell am I doing this? Oh yeah because I'm crazy, Richard's inner monologue was going to actually drive him crazy if he didn't calm down. Wiping his hands on his jeans, he slid his gaze over towards Vet's profile. How could the other man be so calm about all of this? Did he often fly halfway across the country to give people shared custody of newborns whose parents had died and then pack them up to move them back to Texas with him? Maybe that's why he said he had an unusual family, maybe they're like a cult or something, he thought irrationally. He grunted, he knew that he was being silly, he'd known AL for years and she'd never given off the vibe that she had been raised in a cult, she and Cameron seemed completely normal. So why was it that being around Vet, talking with him, packing up to move with him, just felt so...weird?
Maybe it's because it doesn't feel weird to you at all. You feel like you've been waiting your whole life to meet this guy and now you're trying to talk yourself out of it. He already gave you a way out and you know AL, this is just her style of leaving her children with you and letting you find out when you didn't have a way to argue back with her, Richard reasoned with himself. He scoffed at himself. He sounded like one of those mushy, hopelessly romantic, helpless characters in one of those romance books that AL was always reading. Yeah right, who writes romantic stories about gay men anyway?
"Here we are," Vet's deep, smooth as melted chocolate voice yanked him out of his musings and soothed his racing thoughts as well.
"How do you that?" he asked without thinking. He watched as Vet pulled the key out of the ignition and after unbuckling his seatbelt turned to face him.
"Do what?" he questioned, dark, bushy eyebrows raised in amazement then lowered in confusion and Richard wanted to scream that he watched their movement with fascination. He was sick...no, he was horny and he needed to get laid...like yesterday.
"I don't know. Talk," he responded, not making any sense. He watched Vet's eyebrows lower further as if in complete consternation before he burst into deep, rumbling laughter. Richard's watched as the older man's mouth opened as he laughed with his entire being and his heart caught in his chest...were those dimples in his cheeks? He groaned, someone in heaven was laughing at him, wanting to see him squirm.
"Well, like most people, I open my mouth, think words and they come outta my voice box, same as you," Vet responded in amusement, chuckling again when Richard huffed in annoyance.
"You know what I mean! You talk and I don't know...I feel peaceful, like someone's wrapping me in a blanket. How do you do that? Is that some sort of Southern hospitality, magic kind of thing?"
Vet's body became rigid then and Richard's eyebrows rose at the reaction to his questions. What had he said to make the big man act in such a way?
"Do you believe in that stuff?" Vet asked, trying for a nonchalant tone.
"What stuff?" Richard asked as the two men finally exited the vehicle and walked into the posh hotel and making their way towards the elevator. Vet didn't respond at first, his face set in an impassive mask, his lips set in a grim line, if Richard didn't know better he'd think that the other man was nervous about something. There was only one other couple in the elevator when they stepped on, a young couple, who couldn't seem to keep their hands off of each other. Richard tried to look away but his eyes kept returning to their passionate kisses and bold caresses of each other.
"Is that normal?" he heard Vet ask from where he stood behind him, his voice sounding strained and Richard wondered if the large Texan was as turned on by the other couple as he was.
"For New York? Yeah, it actually is," he responded, grinning widely when their voices finally carried over to the other couple who froze and as if slowly becoming aware of their surroundings and the fact that they were in a public place, they separated and grinned sheepishly at them.
"Sorry," the smaller man, a gorgeous little blonde, said. "We just found out that they legalized gay marriage in our home state."
Richard nodded with a grin, he'd reacted much the same way when New York had done it...except he couldn't remember the name of the man he'd had sex with to celebrate that night, these two looked as if they were in it for the long haul.
"Are you two planning on getting married then?" Vet asked politely as the elevator doors opened and the other couple prepared to step out.
"Well, we've been together for years, adopted a son, had a daughter by surrogate, we're already a family and tell people that we're married, but yeah, we're going to make it official, just as soon as we can pack and fly back home," the larger man, dark haired, with a Stetson on his head replied.
Richard laughed silently, it was like looking at mirror images of themselves almost. Well, except for the fact that the other couple was in a committed relationship.
"That's really great, where's home for you?" Richard asked, hoping that the two didn't mind that they were holding them up from leaving.
"Ohio," the two men answered simultaneously before they both burst into laughter. It was the happiest sound that Richard had ever heard.
"Oh honey, we have to go call Vee, she promised to perform our wedding when it was legal," the smaller man replied.
"Well, let's go call her then," the larger man responded. Right then a phone rang and both men chuckled, "That's probably her. Nice to meet you," the blonde answered and the two men stepped out of the elevator completely and walked away, chattering happily with their friend over the phone and planning their wedding.
"I'm so happy for them," Richard responded quietly to Vet, his mind imagining his own non-existent, improbable wedding and marriage.
"Yeah, me too," he heard Vet sigh behind him and he turned to look at the larger man as the elevator continued to move up to their floor.
"So...what stuff?" he asked again, picking up their conversation from the car.
"Oh. Yeah, you know, like magic and shapeshifters and stuff," Vet responded, the tension returning to his body.
Richard considered the question, he wasn't sure why the Texan was asking him such an absurd question. Was he trying to prove that he was unfit to raise AL's children? Well, no that couldn't be it, he'd talked Richard INTO coming, why would he be trying to talk him OUT of it now? Maybe he meant it as a joke? Richard shook his head mentally, Vet didn't really seem the type to joke around like normal people. Deciding to take the question at face value, he decided to answer honestly.
"Yeah, I guess I do kinda believe that stuff. There are too many things that can't be explained, besides it would be the height of arrogance for humans to believe that we're so special we're the only species around that can talk. I mean, if we can't discount aliens, then we can't discount werewolves, or shapeshifters, or wizards and witches. Besides Jacob Black from the Twilight series is hot!" Richard responded with a smile.
Vet laughed and nodded, the tension easing from his body as if Richard's response had eased his mind of some unspoken worry. Before Richard could ask the other man about it, however, the doors opened to the Penthouse suite and Richard followed the larger man through the entryway into the living area of the suite. He'd been a little shocked that Vet had the money and the reputation to have a Penthouse suite in the hotel, but he hadn't questioned him, how would he know how much money one could make as a farmer and a cowboy? Maybe they made a lot. Ridding his mind of the image of Vet in a pair of brown leather chaps and a Stetson, much like the one the man had in the elevator, his muscles rippling and sweaty from working outside all day, Richard tried to desperately think of anything that would make his erection dwindle.
Acne, bunions, my grandmother naked, my parents having sex, wearing clothes completely out of season, that lost thought was so absurd that he gave a snort of laughter and realized that his erection had died somewhere along the way. Waving his hand at Vet's look of question, he pasted a smile on his face as he stepped fully into the room and smiled at the couple sitting on the couch before turning to look at the babies, two of them sleeping in their carriers, while one stared right at him from his. Richard felt his heart catch in his chest and lost it at that moment to those triplets. There was no way he could walk away now.
I guess I'm going to become a cowboy now.
*The couple from the elevator will be seen again, it's kind of a special thing for someone special, he knows who he is! Hope you all enjoyed it! Hopefully I'll put up part four tomorrow. Have a great day!! VeeVee*