Thirteen ~ Zach
Dinner was a fat ham sandwich, pickles, chips with sea salt, and a tall glass of milk. I wasn’t a fan of mustard, I was a mayo guy, but since David had made it, I ate it. All of it, even the chewy crust, all the chips, and the pickle too. Then because my eating made Sir smile and rub my head, I drank down all the milk and asked for more. The second glass was delivered with chewy chocolate chip cookies and a handful of meds.
“I feel okay,” I argued when David dropped the painkiller and antibiotic into my palm. He sat down beside me, flattened the covers resting over my legs, and met my look with a firm one.
“Do as you’re told, Pup.”
“Yes, Sir.” I swallowed them down, secretly yearning for a little relief from my rib injury. “I don’t want to sleep, though. I want to spend time with you.”
He took the milk from me, placed it on the nightstand, and then waved at me to lay down. I hurried to comply. His big, hard body stretched out beside me. I wiggled close, wincing a bit, but not giving up until my cheek rested on his thick bicep. Drinking in his profile made me happy. Knowing that I was his Pup, that he loved me as much as I loved him…it made everything bad that had ever happened to me in the past seem like smudged chalk on a sidewalk. Visible, yeah, but the details were hard to make out.
“You’ll be spending so much time with me you’ll be sick of me,” he whispered, his fingers moving through my hair in slow, sleepy motions that began to make my eyes droopy.
“Never. Never. I’ll never get tired of you, Sir.”
“We’ll see. For now, just rest. Your body needs to heal, and it can’t do that if you’re up bouncing all around chasing balls.”
I smiled at that. “Can we do a puppy play date sometime? When this is all over and it’s just you and me, Sir? I know it’s pushy of me, and you think it’s silly, but I want to be your good boy.”
“You already are. The absolute best boy. And it’s not that I think it’s silly, it’s just that…I was being snobby. An elitist Dom. My kink it the true kink and that kind of bullshit. Yes, we can do puppy play anytime you want. I did buy you a tail, remember?”
A yawn that cracked my jaw arrived. “Mm, yes, a butt plug tail. It was so pretty. I want to wear it for you.”
“You will as soon as everything is taken care of. Now, stop making so much noise.”
There was something floating around inside my sluggish head that I’d wanted to say, but it disappeared when I began to fall into sleep. Breathing in his scent, the wonderful mix of dark spices and David, I didn’t fight it. I slipped off with a sigh. There were no dreams, but I did wake up with a sharp huff of pain when I rolled over in my sleep.
“Easy now sugar,” someone called from a shadowy corner. I knew that voice… where the fuck was I? Was it night? Where was my Sir? “Shh, shh. Let me get a light.” The lamp beside the bed flickered on, and I squinted in confusion at the tall black man in a bright pink shirt and capri set smiling at me. Onyx. Yes, I knew him. The grip of fear loosened. I was in my Dom’s bed, snug and safe. “There now. See, it’s only me.” He sat primly on the edge of the massive bed, his smile sweet and sunny, just like always. “Your man asked me to come sit with you while he went to see his therapist. You know I just love you to bits, so I ran over. Do you want something to eat? Drink?”
“No, I…no. I have to piss.” I pushed at the covers tangled around my legs. Something was weird here, but I was still too muzzy from the damn meds to see what it was that felt so off. After I used the toilet and washed up, I padded back out to the bedroom. Onyx was still sitting on the bed, his big brown eyes full of sadness as he got a good look at my black and blue body. “It’s not as bad as it looks.”
“Oh yes, it is, pudding,” he said as he stood and pulled back the rumpled covers. “Back into bed. Diamond was firm that you were not to leave this bed until he came home.”
Feeling dopey still, I climbed up into the bed, tucked a pillow under my head, and laid down. Onyx flipped the sheet and light summer blanket up over me, the ballooning of the coverings wafting the smell of David and me up over my face.
“He went to see his therapist?” I asked while my fellow Gem fussed around with the bedding.
“Yes, poor man is just torn up about what happened to you. Feels he should have been a better Dom and kept his sweet puppy safe.” He patted my hip gently. “Now, I’m going to run downstairs and make you some dinner.”
“Can you hand me my phone please?”
“Of course, sugar.” He sashayed to the dresser, grabbed my cell, and made his way back. I gave him a timid smile that got me a peck on my cheek. “Now, you just recuperate and watch something fun on YouTube. I’ll be back in two shakes!”
I smiled wanly as I thumbed my home screen to find that my contacts list was open. Had I done that? Must be…
As soon as the door closed, I sat up and began searching online for therapists named Micah and James. It took me about eight seconds to locate Micah and his husband. Both were listed and had some nice reviews. I tapped the phone icon as my eyes flitted around the bedroom. I’d never really noticed it before but there were no pictures of any kind on the cool gray walls. No oils or family portraits…but now that I knew about David’s past and family, well, sure, I could see why no pictures. Even as fucked up as my childhood had been, I had pictures of my Grandma on the walls of my apartment. None of my mother, obvs, as she had been the one to take off with some junkie and leave me when I was three. I hardly even cried when they found her body, veins full of toxic horse, a few years later. I did cry my ass off when Grandma died.
Micah picked up. Just hearing his voice made me want to slap a bitch.
“Hey, it’s Amber,” I said and waited as he processed. “David said he was coming there. Can I talk to him?”
“David isn’t here. I haven’t seen him since the last session he had with James, where he and I go into a knockdown about you.”
My stomach did a dead drop. Yet, I wasn’t surprised. Not really. He’d balked about seeing James, only agreeing when I’d pushed him. A cold creeping dread settled on me like a wet sweater. If he wasn’t with Micah and James, then where was David? What was he doing that was so important that he’d leave me with a babysitter? Then, as if shot by a bazooka, the knowledge plowed into my sternum. Somehow, I just knew. Deep down in my gut I knew he’d gone to find Pup Whisperer…his uncle, Paul. What was it he had said?
“You’re welcome, Pup. Now go to bed. You need to rest. Food will come up soon. Stop worrying. I’ll take care of everything.”
“Fuck.” I cut Micah off mid-complaint, threw the covers off, and rushed around looking for my clothes. I knew Diamond, had seen him in action, defending all of us Gems more times than I could count. But this was more than some bidder slapping me around. This…this was incredibly personal to him, it had to be. It was the same man who’d hurt him so long ago. I was so flustered, so muddied from the meds, that I spun around in a circle several times, looking for my fucking clothes. Finally, I spied them. They were on the long dresser, neatly folded. Yanking on what I’d worn to Paul’s place made me queasy. I ached all over, and pulling in a deep breath was torture, but my Sir was about to do something phenomenally stupid and I had to stop him.
Onyx was coming up the stairs as I stumbled down them, a tray with a bowl of tomato soup and crackers in hand. I bounced off the railing to avoid him, went to one knee, and yelped in pain as I grabbed for the handrail.
“Good Lord above, child, what are you doing?” He scolded, balancing the tray over his head. “You get back in bed this instant.”
“No, can’t.” I pulled myself back to my feet, wincing at the throbbing ache in my side, and thudded down the stairs, Onyx in hot pursuit. Out into the smoldering summer night I went, phone in hand, bare feet slapping the still warm sidewalk, I limp/ran to the bus stop on the corner, arriving just as the bus did. Choking through the fog of diesel fumes, I climbed on, dropped a handful of coins into the box, and watched as Onyx jogged along in our wake for a half a block before giving up in utter frustration. Panting, I dropped into an empty seat, my head fuzzy, and prayed I’d get to the Riverside Condominium Towers before David did something that we’d never recover from.