Chapter 21

August 1974

During their summer trip, things seemed to be better than before. They had made up after their argument and were just trying to focus on enjoying themselves. Neither of them liked fighting; it was such a waste of time when they could be doing other things, and not just sex.

Ennis still felt guilty about hurting Jack yet again, so he was trying to be more loving than usual. He was still very unsure of himself when it came to being romantic, but he was trying. He woke Jack up on their first full day with breakfast in bed, which put a smile back on Jack's face.

"What's all this?" he asked as he looked around at what Ennis had brought into the tent. Ennis shrugged, wondering if he'd done the right thing. Jack sure seemed happy about his gift.

"Thought you might like it...'specially after the last trip. Wanted to try an' make it up to you." Jack looked at him, sensing that Ennis was feeling bad about turning down his suggestion of more trips. He'd learned to make his peace with what they had; at least for now.

"Ennis...it's okay. You don't gotta feel bad about that. In the past now." He reached out and touched Ennis's arm gently, trying not to spook him. Ennis gave him a disheartened look; he was ashamed of himself for the way he sometimes treated Jack. He felt like he was taking the man for granted lately.

"I just...I'm thinkin' that I treat you real bad. Like...I can just treat you how I want an' assume that yer gonna turn up anyway. Don't like it..."

Jack sighed and pushed the breakfast aside, shuffling closer to Ennis. "Cowboy...it's okay. I like comin' here an' meetin' you. An' I know you don't like fightin' with me. It's really okay. We still have a good time, right?" Ennis nodded; they did still enjoy these trips when they weren't fighting. "So it's okay. I know you don't mean it." He kissed Ennis's cheek and returned to the food. "You wanna join me with this?"

Ennis smiled a little and did so, sitting beside him and enjoying the breakfast. He wondered what it would be like if they could have breakfast together every morning, in a real bed. But he tried not to think about things like that; they would only cause him pain.

"You okay?" Jack asked him when he saw how distracted Ennis was. "You look miles away."

"Um..." Ennis looked at him and was struck by the intense blue eyes; they could see right into his soul. He so wished that he could tell Jack how he felt, but every time he thought about it his nerve failed him. Every day they were together, he prayed that somehow he would find the courage. "Dunno...just got a lot on my mind."

Jack nodded and moved closer to him. "Can I help? Maybe take yer mind off it?" His eyes were darker now as he started to feel lustful, and Ennis noticed how aroused he was becoming.

"I guess..." Jack's lips found his neck and he sighed, closing his eyes in pleasure. Jack just knew how to push his buttons, and he was very glad for it. "Mmm..."

"Like that?" Jack breathed, and he nodded.

"Uh huh..." A hand touched his stomach and he gulped, getting harder by the second. He was starting to feel desire building up inside him, and their eyes met. He knew then what he wanted; to have Jack inside him. He didn't get that feeling often, but when he did nothing else would do. "Jack...can you, um...?"

Jack's eyes were boring into his, and Jack seemed to know what Ennis was asking. Bu he thought it was important for Ennis to verbalise what he wanted; it would help him in the long run if he could talk more. "It's okay, Ennis...you can say it..."

"I..." Ennis took a deep breath, and found courage when he found Jack's hand. "I want you...inside me..."

Jack nodded, pleased that Ennis had said it. "Okay, bud. We can do that if you want." He kissed Ennis and started to gently push him down to the bedroll, hoping not to scare him by taking things quickly. When this occurred, he had to be slow and tender for Ennis's benefit. He'd found that he liked it that way anyway. "Just relax..."

Ennis did as Jack told him, taking deep breaths as he saw Jack prepare himself with their eyes fixed together. He knew that Jack was trying to keep his feelings in mind and he appreciated it. Jack could be very good to him when he was on top, and it made Ennis wish that he could be more like that.

When they were both ready, Jack pushed Ennis's legs up and apart, and then leaned over him. He kissed Ennis once more and then started to push in, keeping his ears peeled for any sound of distress from his lover. The last thing he wanted to do was to hurt Ennis. "Shh..."

He pushed his way inside and waited a few moments for Ennis to get used to the feeling, looking down at him lovingly. Ennis was breathing deeply as he waited for the pain to pass, and then all he could feel was the gentle pressure of this wonderful man inside him.

They made love slowly that morning, needing to connect to each other and just forget about everything else in their lives. When they were together, all that mattered was their love and how they showed it to each other. This feeling was unlike any other and neither of them wanted it to end as they held on tightly. They kissed and touched as Jack slowly moved inside his lover, and for a moment they could forget the fact that they lived separate lives for most of the year. For just a few seconds, they could let themselves believe that they were together.