A Conversation Between Matt and Peter
The poetry in writing is the illusion it creates.
(© 2017 by the author)
The author retains all rights. No reproductions are allowed without the author's
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"You're wrong, Peter. I do care for you. You have no idea how much."
"Whaddaya mean, how much?"
"Just what I said."
"You're such a smart-ass. I'd slap you but I'm afraid you might enjoy it."
He smiled. "You're probably right."
"But, you're the only one I'd let do it."
"Being submissive isn't going to work either. And button your shirt."
"Why, it's warm in here."
"Whenever you flash your pecs and abs, I know what you're up to."
"You're trying to seduce me."
"No, I'm not."
"Yes, you are."
"I know what you like."
"That's the problem."
"Why not for God's sake?"
"We've gone over this before. It's called monogamy! For some reason, that word has no meaning for you." He gave me one of his seductive smiles.
"Peter." I glared at him, "We're going to be friends from now on and that's all we're going to be."
"But we're so good together. You know how to turn me on better than anyone else."
I rolled my eyes, got up and walked into the kitchen. "I'm going to do dishes. Are you staying for supper?"
Peter followed and spooned me as I turned on the hot water. "Yes."
I gently pushed him away, "And please don't touch me."
"Since when can't I touch you?"
"Since right now." I grabbed the detergent and squeezed some on a sponge.
"You don't care anymore. Is that it?"
"If I didn't care, you wouldn't be standing there."
"Well, what the hell is it for Christ's sake?"
"Don't get pissed. I just don't what to have sex with you until you decide you can make a commitment to me, to us."
"Touching is not sex."
"The way you touch it is. I know how you operate. You'd have me on the floor, fucking my brains out before I knew it."
"You never complained before."
"Well, I'm complaining now. Keep your hands to yourself."
"So, you're not off of me?"
"Of course not. I love you. I'm probably in love with you."
"So, what am I supposed to do to get back in your bed?"
"Get tested and show me the report. If you're negative then you have to promise you won't split the sheets with anyone else."
"I can't do that."
"I know you can't. That's why I don't want you touching me anymore. I'm healthy and have every intention of dying that way. "
"That doesn't make any sense."
"You know what I mean. Now let's drop it."
"I'm not hungry. See you later." He moved toward me.
"And no goodbye kisses either."
"FUCK!" he slammed the front door.
I wondered if I had gone too far. I didn't mean to piss him off but I was determined to stand my ground. I had seen too many of my friends die from AIDs. It was a horrible way to go and I wasn't going to let it happen to me.
I will have to admit, Pete is a great kisser. He knew how to manipulate me once he got his tongue in my mouth. I wasn't going to let that happen. At least, not until he was willing to make a commitment which I didn't think he was capable of doing.
It was the conversation we had about the medical advances on the disease that made up my mind.
"So what if you get it. They have pills now that take care of it and you don't have to die."
"That's not the point, Peter. Once you have the disease, you will never ever get rid of it." He did not understand or he didn't want to understand.
I felt a twinge of loneliness when he slammed the apartment door. What if I never saw him again? I hadn't thought of that possibility. Shit! Now what have I done?
It was three weeks before I heard the front door open. Peter was the only one who had a key. I was in the kitchen.
"You're still doing dishes. And now there are more."
"Hi. I'm glad to see you."
"Yeah, I'll bet you are."
"Come on, Peter."
"I'm sorry." He walked over and sat down at the table.
"Mom and my sisters came for lunch. There's coffee. Want some?"
"Yeah, I'll get it."
"No, sit. I will. There's ice cream."
"No, I'm good."
I dried my hands, picked up two cups, the coffee pot and moved to the table. As I approached, I saw a sheet of paper on my side of the table.
I sat down, scanned the page and looked up.
"Peter, what's going on?"
"I got tested and I'm clean. Isn't that what you wanted?"
"Yes, of course." I was at a loss for words. I waited. I could tell from the expression on his face he was struggling to add something.
Finally, his lips parted as he prepared to speak. He took a deep breath. "And I promise not to look at or have sex with anyone else."
My jaw dropped slightly.
"And if I fail you, I'll tell you," he looked up at me with an 'is that ok?' look on his face.
I broke into a smile, "You can window shop all you want. All I'm asking is that you take your meals at home."
"Yes, really. If you see some hot number that gets you excited - get excited, and then come home and take it out on me. Fantasizing is ok."
He started to breathe normally. But I could tell he wasn't finished. What he said next knocked me right out of the ballpark.
"Matt, will you marry me?"
I lost it and practically jumped across the table.
We were on the floor ripping each other's clothes off. I got up. "Come on." I took his hand and dragged him into the bedroom.
The passion was so intense, we had reached a level of intimacy never experienced before. We always had great sex but this time real love was mixed in which made the sex insane.
When it cooled, "What's your answer?"
"Will you marry me?"
"Peter, are you sure?"
"I've been thinking about it, a lot. Yeah, I'm sure. So, what do you think?
"I think it's a great idea."
"So, will you marry me?"
"My answer is, yes."
Tears began to well in his eyes' "Peter?"
"I was afraid you'd say no."
"Well, you silly goose, I didn't. So, when?"
"Yeah, when do you want to get married?"
He began to laugh, "When do you, want to get married?"
"The sooner the better."