Chapter 8

June 2nd, 1963

They had been on the mountain for almost a month now, and already so much had changed. Jack was more certain of his feelings than Ennis, but it wasn't any easier for him. He was half-convinced that Ennis wasn't interested and was now trying to get his feelings to simmer down.

He was sleeping away from camp now, having switched back as agreed. They would have to move the sheep higher up the mountain soon as summer was passing, and he wondered if such a change would affect anything between them.

He couldn't sleep tonight; his head was filled with thoughts of Ennis. He so wished that he could sleep in the main tent with his friend, with Ennis holding him close and perhaps kissing him. That would be the best feeling in the world, he knew.

But he didn't like to get his hopes up; Ennis was engaged, after all. Jack knew that Ennis was the type to stand by his promises and he felt slightly resentful for it. He couldn't help himself; he knew that his feelings were developing into love and there was nothing he could do about it.

I just wanna know how he feels, he thought to himself, rolling onto his side and trying to get to sleep. If he don't feel the same, then at least I'll know an' I can try to forget it. But how do I even find out without scarin' him? I'd rather have him here an' not talkin' to me than not here at all.

He closed his eyes and allowed images of Ennis to fill his mind. They were the kind of dreams that he would be keeping to himself, for sure. In his dream, he felt Ennis's rough lips on his and a searching tongue exploring his mouth.

"Ennis," he groaned as the dream took over. Ennis was kissing him deeply and had loosened his shirt, slipping a hand underneath to run over Jack's chest. He whimpered and raised his hips, needing more. "Fuck me," he breathed into Ennis's ear. Ennis kissed his neck and undid his jeans, silently taking control and giving Jack what he'd asked for. Jack felt Ennis pushing into him and starting to move, doing everything to him that he'd wanted.

Jack jerked awake and took deep breaths, the vivid dream still on his mind. He'd had these dreams for over two weeks now and he was starting to yearn for the real thing. Ennis had felt so good inside him and he wanted to know what it really felt like. But there was just no way for it to happen; Ennis just didn't feel the same.

He looked down and saw a stain on the front of his jeans; he hadn't shot but was covered in pre-come, and he sighed to himself. He would have to finish the job, still being hard with the thoughts of Ennis in his head. Jack lay back and did what he had to do; it would just have to be enough.

Down in the main camp, Ennis was having a similar problem. He was lying in his own tent and had found himself thinking of Jack; of those deep blue eyes that seemed to pierce into his soul, not to mention those dimples and that dark hair that he wanted to run his fingers through.

He could remember how it had been for Earl and Rich before Earl's murder; he and his siblings had been told to stay away from the ranch house that the two men shared, and he remembered seeing them in town together. They had always been ridiculed and most of the shopkeepers refused to serve them. One had even chased them out with a shotgun. Mothers would cross the street with their children if they saw one or both of them heading that way, as if fearful for their offspring. Ennis did not want that to happen to him; he just couldn't be like them.

He was hard from thinking of Jack and all the things he wanted them to do, but he was stubbornly refusing to touch himself. He thought that if he did, he would be giving in and he didn't like that. He wanted to be angry at Jack for making him feel like this, but he just couldn't. He thought that Jack didn't feel the same, so reasoned that it wasn't Jack's fault that he was going through this.

Ennis looked down at himself; his arousal wasn't about to go down by itself anytime soon, not while Jack was on his mind. He glanced around the tent, as if somebody might be watching and judging him, and realised what he had to do. He sighed and undid his jeans, taking hold of himself and closing his eyes.

Thoughts of Jack were set free in his mind; Jack kissing him and touching him. They were both here, naked, and he so wanted to make their bodies connect.

"Wanna fuck you," he murmured into Jack's ear, pressing himself down. Jack nodded and widened his legs, allowing him access.

"Come on," he breathed, clearly ready for this. "Ennis..." He drew in a breath when Ennis started to enter him, pushing deep. "Oh God..."

Ennis kissed him on the mouth as they moved together, curling his tongue around Jack's and taking hold of him with his free hand.

Ennis felt himself release into his hand and sighed, finally feeling satisfied. He hated how it was the only solution, because then he remembered how Jack didn't seem to return his feelings. He would never know how it would truly feel to be inside Jack, or to even kiss him.

He tried not to think of Alma, or to feel guilty about how she knew nothing of his desires. This just had to be kept separate; that was all. He wanted Jack, for this summer if nothing else, and he wondered if there was anything he could do to achieve this goal.