A/N: Here is the conclusion. I have enjoyed writing this story, and I appreciate all the great feedback. I hope you have enjoyed reading it. I am thinking about placing the "infamous" Lane in a sequel, albeit he would not be a real welcome intrusion in our boys' life. Any thoughts? Thanks again for the great feedback!
"Justin," Brian repeated longingly. His world was crashing down at the realization that Justin had, indeed, taken off with Prescott. The thought of never seeing his lover again filled him with anguish. His heart felt like a hole had been punched in it and his feet were rooted to the spot as he watched the blue and white jet disappear down the runway and lift off into the sky.
"Brian?" He heard a familiar, soft voice whispering to him in his dreams. How he wished he could see the face again that went with that voice.
"Brian?" The voice repeated itself. Brian finally realized the voice was NOT in his head. Turning around slowly, he looked behind him and saw Justin standing there with a look of bewilderment and something else on his face. Fear? Relief? He wasn't sure.
They stood close together frozen, both afraid they were just imagining what they were seeing. Then as if they were one, the two lovers rushed toward each other. Justin, reaching the older man first, launched himself into Brian's arms, wrapping himself firmly around the brunet. Brian, in turn, grabbed Justin and snuggled him tightly, arms gripping the lithe body in a vise. A loud sigh of contentment was heard, but it was difficult to tell from whom. "Brian, Brian," Justin kept whispering, as he nuzzled the taller man and rained butterfly kisses down his face and neck.
Brian felt Justin trembling against him. Pulling him back slightly but never taking his arms away from him, he peered down lovingly into the blond's eyes with bright, unshed tears as he declared, "Justin," he murmured. "I thought I had lost you…..to HIM."
Putting two and two together, Justin asked, "Lane?" Seeing Brian's affirmative nod, he declared firmly, "Never." Seeing the other man's uncertainty and even apprehension in his eyes, he asked, "Why would you think that, Brian? I told you I loved you. That hasn't changed. YOU'RE the one I want to be with," he reassured him, smiling softly. He again snuggled into Brian's body, relishing the warmth and smell of the other man he knew so well, before he looked back up at him. "Why would you think I would leave with Lane?"
His lover hesitated briefly. "Well, Debbie told me a limo had picked you up from the diner earlier and I figured it must have been Lane's after he told me the two of you were having dinner together. He said he was going to ask you to fly back with him to New York. So when I got here and saw the jet leaving, I naturally assumed you were with him."
Brian was startled when Justin suddenly pushed himself away from him. "Why would you assume that, Mr. Kinney?" Oh, uh, "Mr. Kinney." I know that tone….never a good sign. "And while we're on the subject of Lane, just when were you going to tell me you had a business relationship with him? I didn't know until tonight that you were in charge of Lane's advertising campaign here. Why were you keeping that from me, Brian? And how long have you known he was my mystery benefactor?"
Brian looked down at the ground. Truth was, he really didn't know WHY he had felt a need to keep that from Justin. Letting out a deep breath, he looked up at intense blue eyes as he said, "I've known it was Prescott since Sunday night. I actually met him last week when he first came into Kinnetik for an initial meeting with me. He was the person who gave me an extra ticket to the benefit and urged me to go. Then, after you had dinner with him, I recognized him when the two of you came out of La Maisonette."
Justin's brow knotted together in confusion. "What do you mean, after you saw the two of us coming out of dinner? Were you there?"
Another uh, oh moment. Time for confession…… "Yeah, actually, Carl had an undercover cop following you Sunday night to make sure you were all right." Before Justin could protest and Brian lost his nerve, he continued. "I sort of followed the cop following you in my 'Vette."
There is it….Mount Taylor erupting. "Are you fucking kidding me? You were following me? Along with a cop? Why, Brian? I told you I could take of myself! Why do you have to treat me like a child?"
"Maybe because you're pouting like a child right now, you twat!" Brian reached toward Justin, only to have the artist shrug off his gesture. "Look," he began, in an earnest attempt to placate his lover, "I know you can take care of yourself. But until I found out it was Prescott, no one knew anything about this person! He or she could have been some fucking psychopath! Actually," he continued, "after getting to know him better, I'm not so sure we weren't correct. There's something not quite right about that fucker," he stated. "I just wanted to make sure you were all right, Sunshine," he said soothingly. "I was worried about you."
Justin knew how hard it was for Brian to admit that. And he was also starting to understand the motivation behind all the romantic gestures Brian had made toward him this week. He was afraid of losing me, he thought, trying hard to prevent a smile from appearing on his face.
"It's YOUR turn now, Justin," Brian placed both hands on Justin's upper arms so he had to look directly up at him. "If you weren't planning on leaving with Prescott, why did you agree to meet him here for dinner?"
"Lane said he had to change his plans and needed to leave for New York right away," Justin said a little defensively. "He was the one who asked me to meet him here at the airport for dinner. I didn't know at the time that we would be having dinner inside his jet, rather than at a restaurant, though." He shuddered at the thought of how close he felt he came to actually being kidnapped by that man. From the intense look Lane had given him before he finally let him leave, Justin had no doubt that he was determined not to take no for an answer. "Lane said he had something important to ask me, and I had something important I needed to tell him, too. I needed to tell him that I loved you and I could not have a relationship with him. But I thought after all that he had done at the benefit, the least I could do was meet with him face-to-face. I just didn't realize how determined he would be."
Brian face hardened as he reached out to shake Justin a little to get his attention. "He didn't hurt you, did he?" He had felt how Justin was trembling earlier and he was suddenly alarmed. Cupping one hand under his lover's chin, he forced Justin to look directly at him as he waited anxiously for confirmation. "Justin? TELL me."
"No, Brian, he didn't do anything like that," he hurriedly reassured him, noticing the man relaxing the grip he had on him and the face smoothing out. "He DID frighten me a little, though," he admitted. "I don't think he's used to getting no for an answer," he offered in explanation.
"You're always been far too trusting, Sunshine," Brian admonished him gently, continuing to cradle his lover's face. Beneath his sympathetic façade, however, the brunet was actually enraged by Prescott's nerve. He decided at that moment that no amount of lucrative business was worth it to continue a professional relationship with that arrogant asshole. If you EVER come within a mile of Justin again, he thought, you will be walking around without your fucking balls after I kick the shit out of you.
He turned his attention back to his boyfriend. "What do you say we get out of here, Sunshine? Sounds like you didn't have time for dinner. How about we start with an appetizer and go from there?" He raised his eyebrows suggestively.
Justin smiled, reaching his arms up to Brian's neck to pull him down for a passionate kiss. After an extensive tongue washing, both men pulled back, panting and breathless. "Brian," Justin whispered in his lover's ear seductively. "I'm REALLY hungry. I want my appetizer NOW." He looked around the tarmac, spotting a group of private aircraft parked nearby. Brian looked at him questioningly as the younger man pulled him by his jeans toward the nearest one, a sleek, burgundy Cessna. He twirled the older man around, pushing him up against the belly of the craft. Keeping one hand on his lover, Justin reached up to grasp the door handle of the airplane. He smiled triumphantly as the door promptly opened at his touch. "C'mon, old man," he urged his lover. "Let's rechristen this plane as the latest Kinney fuckpad." Pulling Brian urgently toward him, he grinned wickedly at him as he said, "They don't call them cockpits for nothing." Smiling in return at the blond's impatience, Brian did not need much encouragement from his lover to climb in.
The two lovers finally emerged from their cozy cocoon after an hour of thorough fucking, deciding that their actual lovemaking would have to wait until "dessert" later. Walking hand in hand toward Brian's 'Vette, the two men were oblivious to the occasional stares they produced.
Once they were inside the car, Brian turned to his lover. Seeing the man's earnest-looking face, Justin asked, "Brian, what is it? I thought everything was all right now."
"Not quite everything, Sunshine. There's a matter of why we broke up in the first place," Brian reminded him.
Justin sighed. "I know, Brian. I realize we haven't resolved everything yet. And I won't lie. I STILL want some type of commitment between us. A relationship," he smiled as he saw a wince appear on the brunet's face at the mention of the "r" word. He sobered as he realized this large problem was still looming over them, despite their mutual declaration of love the other day. He had never actually doubted that Brian loved him. The problem was that Brian still shunned the idea of an exclusive arrangement with him. Brian reached into his jacket pocket. Producing a folded white piece of paper, he handed it quietly to Justin.
"What's this?" Brian remained silent, looking at Justin as he slowly opened the piece of paper. Justin discovered it was a purchase contract listing both his name and Brian's. Reading further down the page, he noticed the address written on the document. "Brian? This is the address of the loft over at the Blackbird Art Studio in Lawrenceville. I don't understand."
"It's a piece of paper they fill out when you want to buy a piece of property…."
"Brian, you KNOW what I mean. What is this for?"
"Well, Sunshine, you told me how important it was for you to have a commitment," he said, clearing his throat ceremoniously as he continued, "a relationship. I saw how your eyes lit up when you saw that loft yesterday. It was all you talked about last night, in between our fucking, that is," he said, smiling. "So if I was going to go through with this, I thought we should make a fresh start. I thought this loft would be a good place. Not to mention, it doesn't hurt to know a real estate agent that's willing to sell you property without a commission." Brian looked at his lover somewhat anxiously as he waited for Justin's response. It was important to him that Justin believe he was being sincere.
"You're buying this loft for the two of us?" Justin was incredulous. He had absolutely fallen in love with Lawrenceville and the loft he had seen last night. But he never imagined Brian would do something as, well…, ROMANTIC, as buying it for the two of them. "What about your loft on Tremont?" He peered intently at Brian, trying to gauge his lover's true feelings.
Brian shrugged. "Without you in it, it's just a space. It's been too quiet without you," he added, softly. "I want us to start somewhere new. I can't promise I will never want to fuck some other guy, Justin. But I CAN promise you that I will never bring one home again – not in our NEW home."
Justin's heart swelled at the thought of Brian wanting to change to please him. "But, Brian, like I've told you before, I don't want you taking care of me. I want to make my own way in life. You can't keep propping me up."
"I thought you liked it when I propped you up," he said teasingly. Turning serious, he said, "I have the utmost confidence in you, Sunshine. I have no doubt that with the downstairs studio space, it won't be any time at all before you take the art world by storm and the money starts flowing in. If it makes you feel any better, we can write up some type of contract so you can pay me back out of some of your profits. I'm in advertising, remember? I know what sells. And you've got the goods to sell," he said devilishly, eyebrows waggling.
Justin couldn't help laughing softly. And the thought of starting in someplace new with Brian sounded exciting. Not to mention he adored the warehouse loft he had seen last night. But the nagging doubts wouldn't go away. "Are you sure this is what you want, Brian? That you're not just doing this to try and please me? It's important to me that you're happy, too." Blue sapphire eyes looked at the brunet intently. "Can you be happy with these kinds of changes?"
Brian took both of the blond's hands in his. "Justin, I admit it. Seeing you with Prescott made me realize what I could have lost. You are the most important person in my life. And I definitely WASN'T happy at the thought that you might actually consider going with him. In fact, I was pretty fucking miserable. It made me think about my priorities and what I need to be happy. And what I need most to be happy is you." Smiling, he continued. "I know this is going to make me sound like some type of Stepford fag, but it's true. No one else makes me feel the way you make me feel. I can't promise I won't want to fuck some guy on occasion just for the thrill of the hunt. But I just don't feel like I need to do that so much anymore. Not with you in my life," he said shyly. It was always hard for Brian to admit how he felt to Justin, but this sensitive, sentimental blond had affected him in ways he never imagined he could be.
Rubbing the soft skin of his lover, he waited nervously for his response. After a few seconds, Justin took a deep breath. Tears glistened in the blue eyes as he softly replied, "I can't think of a better place to make a fresh start in than the loft where we made love last night. And I can't think of anyone else I'd rather make a fresh start with than you. I love you….so much."
Seeing one of Brian's rare, radiant smiles break out, Justin's face reflected the same happiness as he leaned toward the brunet, lips meeting his in a passionate kiss.