LadyDragonsblood, Hehe, our rockstars are so purdy. I'm hurryin. Debwood-1999, Thank you, the discussions really helped. takers dark lover, Hmm, i dunno, was it JoMo? ;D chace m.j, Here's more. Mor? DesertEagle16, No worries, darlin, & thank you. & i'm glad ppl don't mind Tyler. He's kinda growin on me.
Title: The Picture Frame
Warnings: Language, flirting, gratuitous descriptions of artwork (sorry bout that)
Jeff held Adam's hands in his own, gazing into shining hazel eyes. Those lovely eyes gazed right back, looking more green today in the sunlight.
"You really wanna do this, baby?" Jeff asked. His blonde licked his lips and nodded, swallowing nervously.
"I asked you, didn't I?" Adam said.
Jeff took a deep shuddering breath. He couldn't deny that he was nervous and excited too, his heart thumping and adrenaline coursing through his veins. "It's a big leap."
"I know." Adam ran his thumbs over Jeff's knuckles and grinned. "You getting cold feet?"
"No," Jeff said with an answering grin. "I'm ready. Let's do this." He let go of one hand, the other remaining locked with Adam's as they turned, ready to face the world side by side. Adam giggled, sounding giddy.
"Okay." Adam said. "On three. One..."
Jeff had a wide smile on his face as the couple crouched down, planting their feet. "Two..." Jeff continued. They glanced at each other out of the corners of their eyes, Adam biting his lip.
"Three!" both men cried, and they rushed forward, bare feet pounding on the grass as they approached the edge of the cliff. They screamed as one and their feet left the ground, kicking through open air as Jeff and Adam plummeted to the ocean far, far below. The rushing wind stole their shouts and their hands slipped apart. Even though his stomach was in his throat, Adam had the presence of mind to point his toes at the blue-green water rushing at them, and Jeff curled his own body into a ball. Then it was over, the sea crashing around them, stinging and crushing after the liberation of the free-fall.
After a moment's disorientation, Jeff broke the surface, gasping and hearing Adam whoop. "That was fucking incredible! Let's do it again," his baby shouted to him, laughing. He paddled towards Jeff. "You okay?"
"I landed on my ass," Jeff moaned. "Holy fuck, that stings! Quit laughing at me, you bitch," he pouted, but Adam didn't quit. "Oh, that's it. Imma make your ass sting, see how it feels! Get over here!" He tore through the water after the retreating tease. Someone was gonna get a spanking tonight.
Matt hated doing Jeff's job while he was away. Matt's place was in the back, on the phone making deals, going over books and making the business run smoothly. Not out on the gallery floor, schmoozing with patrons and explaining the artwork. Jeff was better at this. He was more of a people-person, easy-going and friendly, talking about the paintings and sculptures with such passion. His passion was contagious and patrons got excited about the art, wanting to buy it. Jeff's eccentric appearance didn't hurt the process, either. Artsy-fartsy folk wouldn't trust an artist that looked like a corporate tool.
It wasn't that Matt was terrible at this particular job. He could put on a friendly face and he was well-informed about the pieces. Plus, he was a very good salesman. Jeff usually brought the people willing to buy directly to Matt, knowing he could get talk the best price out of them. The gallery still made money while Jeff was away, but Matt certainly didn't enjoy it. Then he still had the business side to deal with after close. He'd been at this a week, and he was glad Jeff and Adam were coming home tomorrow. Maybe now that Lawler had a year-long contract here they'd be busy enough to afford to hire help. Matt had to take out a sizable business loan to cover Lawler's contract, and if he didn't draw like Matt expected, Galleria Imag-I would be sunk.
Matt had just finished failing to convince an irritating couple to buy a painting by one of their other artists. He had the feeling the couple was friends with the artist, but he couldn't blame them for not wanting the piece. It was a painting of a woman with beautiful features, but they were put together in a way that made her look odd and disproportionate. Matt didn't think the woman was supposed to be grotesque or deformed, it was just the style the chick painted and she wasn't very good. Her work sold, though, patrons just thinking it was a commentary on inner and outer beauty or some shit.
Matt sighed and strolled the floor, seeing no other potential customers and waiting for the day to be over. Half an hour to close, almost there. He rounded a corner to the area where Jeff's current exhibit was displayed. He was thinking he'd skip doing books tonight and go home to crack open a beer in front of the TV. Maybe catch up on the episodes of True Blood that had stacked up in his DVR. Yeah, he'd order a pizza and maybe pick up a few-
His thoughts were cut off when he saw the man studying one of Jeff's pieces. The painting was of Adam – or rather, Edge – from the waist up. The background was made up of vague, twisted guitar-like shapes in a riot of color that Jeff said was music. Edge was thickly outlined in black, yellow hair in waves around a blue-skinned face, features rendered sharp in exaggerated angles. The eyes were huge, the whites colored lavender, irises green with triangles of brown radiating from the pupils. Bee-stung purple lips puckered over a jutting chin. The lips were the same shade of purple as the nipples that decorated the rectangles of his chest, and blocky outlines of washboard abs disappeared at the bottom of the canvas. This was Jeff's favorite painting, and Matt doubted he would sell it, even to the work of art who examined it now.
The man's back was to Matt, and what a back it was. Firm and broad, but not huge, narrowing to a slender waist. Tight jeans encased long, shapely legs and that ass... oh, that ass. Round and juicy, popping so beautifully as his hip cocked. He took a couple steps backward, and Matt wanted to drool as he watched those buttocks shift and flex under the tight denim. Fuck, his own pants were feeling tight now. The guy tossed his head a little as he looked up to take in the painting, brown locks flinging to settle in a shining wave around his shoulders. Matt noticed his own feet were moving, bringing him closer as his brain babbled.
Please have a pretty face, please have a pretty face, don't let my voice crack, please don't be a butterface, don't be a dick, no whammies, no whammies...
"So, what do you think?" Matt thanked his throat when his drawl came forth smooth and clear, then He of the Luscious Ass jumped, turning towards him. Matt's brain fizzled to blank as he met a pair of soft chocolate eyes... the boy from the bar. They stared at each other a moment, then the vision licked his lips.
"Gorgeous," he murmured, then flushed. He broke their gaze and gestured at the painting. "Uhm, the painting. It's gorgeous. Did you do it?"
Matt was tempted to say yes, just to impress him, but shook his head. "My brother, Jeff. He's the artist in the family."
"He's very talented. Are you here for moral support?"
Matt grinned. This was where he got to impress a little, but he didn't want to come on too strong. "Actually, we own the place. Me and my brother. I usually run things behind the scenes, and Jeff paints and plays curator."
Those pretty brown eyes darted around. "Then where is he?"
"He's on an anniversary trip with his boyfriend," Matt explained, nodding at the painting.
"That's his boyfriend?" he asked, turning to look at the blue Edge again. "He looks kind of like the guitarist for Codebreak."
"He is," Matt said with a smile. The boy turned back with a shy grin that made Matt's pants even more uncomfortable.
"So, that was you with the band at the Viper. I thought about talking to you, but I guess I chickened out," he said, blushing prettily. Shit, didn't he know how devastatingly attractive he was?
"I have a confession to make. I saw you, too. I wanted to buy you a drink, but you disappeared."
"Really?" he asked. "I figured sure you had a doting boyfriend somewhere. A man like you..."
Matt raised his brows. "A man like me?"
He flushed an even brighter shade of pink. "That sounded sluttier than I meant. Sometimes my mouth does things that my brain doesn't approve. I mean... oh, that sounded wrong, too!" He put his hands over his face and giggled as Matt laughed. "Can we start over? Hi. My name is John Morrison. My friends call me Johnny or JoMo." He put his hand out and Matt took it.
"Matt Hardy. Lovely to meet you, Johnny."
"The pleasure's mine, Matt." Johnny nibbled his lower lip, not letting go of Matt's hand.
"Look, we close in a few minutes. You want to... I don't know, get dinner, have a drink or something?"
Johnny slipped his fingers away from Matt to tuck his hair behind his ear. "I don't want to interfere with your plans."
"My only plan was to eat pizza and watch the last couple episodes of True Blood. That can wait, though," Matt said, and Johnny perked up.
"Actually, that sounds good. I just moved into a new place and my cable's not hooked up yet. I missed the last couple, too. I know it seems kind of forward for a first date, but..."
"You... you want to come to my apartment?" Matt's stomach flipped a little. This beautiful being wanted to come home with him? He normally didn't do that kind of thing, but he was willing make an exception here. He wouldn't expect anything, though, He could take it slow for this one.
"Are you going to chop me up with an axe?" Johnny asked. Oh, he had a sense of humor, too.
"I'm not really into snuff," Matt said wryly, and Johnny giggled.
"Then I think I'm okay."
"You're awfully trusting," Matt said. "But I'd like to have the company."
"Well, you're not into snuff, and I know you won't rape me," Johnny said, stepping back. "You can't rape the willing. I'll be waiting outside." He looked Matt up and down, letting his gaze linger on his crotch, then winked and left the gallery.
John Hennigan stood on the sidewalk outside the gallery and hit the speed dial on his cell phone. He lit a cigarette as he waited for his partner to pick up. When he did, he didn't waste time with pleasantries.
"I got him. Easy as pie. Going home with him tonight to watch TV."
"I never pretended to be anything else," Johnny said, blowing smoke. "I'm playing it coy and sweet, but crazy in the bedroom. Control freaks like him eat that shit up."
"However it works, sweetheart. You may be a ditz, but you know your trade. How tough do you think he'll be to crack?"
"How am I supposed to know?" Johnny asked, letting the ditz comment slide. He was used to that shit from him. "I just met the man. He seems lonely though, that'll make it easier. I should have everything you need in a few months, tops."
"Good. We should have plenty of time, but that doesn't mean I want you to drag your feet, got it?"
"I want my payday as much as you do," Johnny snapped, taking a drag.
"I doubt that. Fuck him good, the poor sap. He'll need some good memories."
"Oh, I will. I'll give him a ride he'll never forget. Oh, here he comes." Johnny hung up the phone and flicked his smoke away, putting on a bright smile. "Hey, Matt. Ready to go?"
"Yeah. Want to follow me?" Matt asked, getting out his keys. Johnny bit his lip.
"Actually, why don't we just take your car? You can drop me off back here later. Maybe in the morning when you come to work?"
Matt raised his eyebrows at him, seeing Johnny give him a grin, those pretty doe eyes looking at him with a mixture of sweetness and something else, a spark of something wild and dirty. Matt found himself hoping this one would stick around as he opened the passenger door for him. This could be just the excitement his life needed.
Uh, in case you don't know, a butterface is when everything about a chick is really hott... but her face. I don't know how common that term might be. Next chp will probably be all Jedam & Matt/Mor smut. Just cuz i can.