Under the Tree

Tobias squatted down next to his Christmas tree sorting through the gifts. Most for his children, some for other members of the family, his parents, his brother, etc, some for himself and Genevieve, from each other. He picked up a box wrapped in gayly colored paper and shook it a little. It was signed "To Gen from Toby with my all my love." He shook it a little and something rattled against the sides of the package. The velvet box inside that contained emerald earrings. He smiled a little and put it back. He stood up, soaking up the quiet of the empty house. Gen had left a note saying she was taking the kids to visit their grandparents and would be back soon.

So he would wait for them and try to enjoy the solitude and the peace, something that was rare for him these days. He settled down on the couch and shut his eyes, a soft smile playing about his lips. This lasted for about five minutes and he began to miss him family and wanted them near. He didn't like being alone, especially at Christmas.

As if the gods had been listening to his thoughts, the door swung open and his wife waltzed in carrying a shopping bag full of more gifts to put under the tree. Her milky pale skin was offset by the fire in her cheeks, a blush created by the cold weather and her good cheer.

Tobias greeted her at the door smiling and took her packages from her, then helped her off with her coat.

"Thanks sweetie," she said, planting a kiss on his cheek, "Those were getting heavy."

"What is all this?" he asked, grinning.

"You shall see my love, soon enough." They walked over to the tree where then set them by the tree, "and I think you will like."

"Oh? Well, I'm sure I will. Where are the kids?"

"I left them at your mother's for the night. I wanted us to spend some time alone," She wrapped her arms around his neck, "How do you feel about that?"

He pulled her into his arms, pushing his body as close to hers as he possibly could, "I think that sounds like a great idea." He brushed her lips tenderly with his own. "I missed you today, honey."

"Yeah? Well, I missed you too," she smiled, and they held each other close. Tobias closed his eyes and took in the clean, fragrant scent of her skin; a faint, but heady mixture of soap, body oil, and a light, flowery perfume. Combined with what was naturally her, it always drove him wild and this time was no different.

But there was something else underneath it, something that didn't quite fit right on his wife. It smelled like ...Brute. But women didn't typically wear that particular fragrance, at least he knew Genevieve didn't. Then he noticed something else. The feel of his wife's full, firm breasts pressing against him was replaced by the feel of a strongly muscled, masculine chest. Tobias gasped and pulled away.

"What's the matter Toby?" his lover asked, staring worriedly into the brilliant blue pools that of his eyes.

Beecher was speechless. He could only stare blankly, his mouth lolling open in surprise. When he was finally able to get a word out, it was, "You..."

"What about me?"

"Y-you're not Genevieve."

"Genevieve's dead."

"No..."

"Yes. I was there with you, remember, when you found out."

Beecher was quiet for a moment, then nodded, understanding dawning on his face.

"Yes, I remember," he said, "I must have been imagining--" He stopped, glancing around. He was still in his house, their house, the house he shared with his wife, and their children. Why was Christopher Keller in his house? He didn't know, but there he was. His confusion was starting to fade and was being replaced by relief. He didn't know how he had come to be there but he was glad that he was. He didn't want to be alone now.

Keller hugged him again, "It's okay, man," he cooed, soothingly, "I'm going to help you through this. I love you Toby."

Beecher returned the hug fiercely, liking the feel of the other man in his arms, the only man he'd ever fallen in love with. "I love you too, Chris."

He broke their hug and sat down under the tree. The present he'd picked up before, from him to Gen, now said, 'To Chris with love, from Toby." He couldn't imagine what was in it now. He looked up at Keller, who was smiling down at him, his pale eyes twinkling, and held out his hand to him. Keller took it and Beecher pulled him down to his side.

"Can't wait to find out what's in here," Keller smiled, "Can't wait for you to open yours either." He ran a strong hand through the his lover's sandy- brown hair. Beecher closed his eyes, reveling in the sensation. Genevieve used to run her fingers through his hair all the time, even when he'd cut it short. She'd said that it sent a delicious feeling like electric sparks through the little pads of flesh between her fingers. Afterward, she would usually be ready for love.

Is that why Chris is doing this, Beecher thought, Is he ready?

He couldn't remember when he and Chris had ever done more than kiss, but he was willing to go farther than that now. In fact, he would insist on it, he thought with a grin. The fingers ran through his hair again, sending Genevieve's sparks down his spine and between his thighs.

"I love it when you do that," he breathed.

"I know. That's why I do it." Expecting Keller's, soft but masculine tenor, Beecher was jarred by the sound of his wife's sweet voice, slightly hoarse with emotion. His eyes flew open and he was staring into hers again. They were alight with desire. "I'm ready Toby," she whispered, moving closer to him, "Take me here under our tree."

She wrapped her arms around his neck and covered his mouth with her own. He kissed her back with all the passion he had inside him, he was practically bursting with it, almost crazed with it. After years of marriage, he wanted her more than ever. He started to lower her down onto the carpet, pushing presents out of the way. The lights from the tree threw brightly colored shadows across her face. He leaned down and kissed her again, simultaneously trying to unbutton her blouse. His fingers trembled, making him stumble on the same button several times. Genevieve laughed and sat up to help him. When it was undone and she'd pulled it off, she began helping him with his. This time his hands were sure and in their haste to get it off, they very nearly ripped all the buttons off.

As they finished undressing, they planted kisses on all the parts of their body that slowly, but surely, became exposed. Tobias lowered himself, once again, on top of her, but was surprised when she forced him off and onto his back. He stared, surprised into eyes that were bright and playful.

"Uh uh uh," his lover teased, "I'm on top this time."

Beecher smiled, finally understanding what was happening. Either he was in some kind of fantasy world, or he was dreaming, which pretty much amounted to the same thing. And it was a hell of a dream too, both of his fantasies merging into one. His wife, as beautiful and vitally alive as he remembered her and he was with her again. Keller, the man that he couldn't deny he wanted badly was with him. His loves were with him.

"You're the boss," he said with mock surrender.

"Damn skippy," Keller replied, grinning. Lust radiated from his every pore as he leaned down and melded Beecher's mouth with his own. Their kiss seemed to last and last until they felt like they were intertwining, melting into each other. Beecher thought the sheer pleasure of the sensation would drive him out of his head. Oh, was he ready. He felt like Mt. Olympus about to erupt.

"Now," he breathed, "Oh please, now."

"Yes," Genevieve laughed, "Right now."

"...now," Keller said, gently.

Tobias felt his whole body start to tremble, but it wasn't from the bliss he was feeling. Someone was shaking him awake.

"Time to get up now, Beecher," Keller was saying, "Time to get up now."

"Huh?"

"It's breakfast. Get up."

Beecher glanced around blearily. Glass walls revealing the common area, the mirror above their sink, their toilet, the bunk he was sleeping on. He sighed in disappointment.

"Yeah okay," he said and started to get up. "Hey Keller, what's today's date?"

"Um the 25th. Of November. Why?"

"It's not Christmas?"

Keller laughed, 'Not unless there's two of 'em. Boy, that must have been some dream you were having."

Beecher smiled a little bit. "Yeah. Some dream."

"Good or bad," Keller asked, an amused smile, playing about his handsome features.

"Don't know," he shrugged, 'I didn't get to finish it. Come on."

They went to breakfast and by lunch the dream wasn't even a distant memory.