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Ghost and Aaron: Master List | Next Update

So I said that I was going to take a break from Ghost and Aaron and I really will—but first I spent another few days with them, because I find them awfully hard to leave. So you all get a few more pictures of the boys—just a short update, and then I have a few more from the new household.

Imaging how Aaron transported this newest acquisition amuses me
Imagining how Aaron transported this newest acquisition amuses me.
Slung over his shoulders? Tied onto the roof the car?
It's pretty conspicuous either way but you bet he went about it without a moment's hesitation.

When Aaron is this adorable, story is unnecessary
When Aaron is this adorable, storytelling is unnecessary.

Ugly raids the trashbin
Ugly raids the trashbin. Aaron is not amused.
I have no idea why this girl finds their house so fascinating, but she nearly haunts their doorstep.

Thefts and garbage bins aside: The boys are well. Ghost is much improved. He's getting out of the house a bit more, sleeping better, and painting whatever he damn well pleases, usually color studies but rarely the visions that haunt his dreams—because they're not as haunting, these days. Aaron is hard at work at his job—he's fallen behind in his exercise but he's maintaining good relationships with his cohorts (his boss thinks he's the perfect employee—I guess Aaron's inclination to mouth off isn't too big a drawback in this sort of profession), and he sits on the brink of a major promotion.

Everyone knows what Aaron does for a living
And he's looking forward to it and chatting about it with everyone...
Save for Ghost, that is, who remains intentionally oblivious to Aaron's thievery and criminal career.

Or so it would seem.

While Aaron sleeps, Ghost reads one of Aaron's books for work
Because while Aaron sleeps away the day, Ghost reads one of the books that he brought home from work.
He's yet to discuss any of it with Aaron.

Aaron has a thing for butterflies
In less serious news, Aaron carries on his grand friendships with the butterflies...
Zeldia, this time—the one Ghost caught recently. But Ghost has yet to notice her after setting up her terrarium.

I just like this picture
As Ghost has calmed, things between Ghost and Aaron have calmed too.
They're less frantic, more romantic, and it's a sweet and healthy change. (Even if it means a little less sex.)

And I'm happy for Ghost, that he's doing better. But as I was writing the storybit I'm appending to this post, and concurrently writing a second storybit that takes place while Ghost and Aaron were living with Sylvie, Ghost made a visit into town. Everyone in the house, alive and dead, has been reading a lot lately and now they're all out of fresh material; with Aaron's steady income, they can afford to buy a few new books.

Ghost visits the bookstore
So Ghost visits the bookstore.

Outside the bookstore, half the town gathers
And as he comes back out, half the neighborhood gathers on the street.
But Ghost stands isolated, alone in the middle of a crowd.

Jude chats with Ghost for a bit
Eventually Jude Vigoda came over and said hello to Ghost, but Ghost isn't much interested in conversation.
And there's something in Jude's expression which makes suggests that he has different interests, himself.
A few minutes later, Ghost excused himself and made a visit alone to the calm and quiet central park.

Which all comes back to where I began, writing these two storybits, both of which discuss Ghost's prior sexual history. Like Jude, like Billy, even like Aaron, Ghost has always attracted male attention. I knew this, from my writing and from his experiences with Aaron and Billy—but seeing Jude glance at him like that was a timely echo of the themes I was working into my writing.

Before things started with Aaron, Ghost probably wouldn't have ignored Jude's sly look.

Aaron gets promoted, and finally joins the thief branch of his chosen career
That evening, Aaron is promoted—and, after months of work, finally joins the thief branch of his career.
That's a pretty big landmark. And it comes with a cool mask, so that's nice.

They're still looking out for each other
They may not celebrate quite as much as Aaron would like, but Ghost is happy for him.

They're still very much in love
Ghost indeed is very sweet on Aaron, coming across the house just to deliver "I love you"s.

Ghost has been a bit absent-minded lately
But in between those moments he seems out of it. Well, moreso than usual.
So out of it that he lost his train of thought halfway through cleaning spoiled food from the fridge.

Ghost releases Zeldia
That afternoon: Ghost releases Zeldia. (Bigger better for expressions.)

Aaron goes to read one of the new books from Ghost's trip into town
Aaron goes to start in on a new book from Ghost's shopping trip, but before he can crack the cover...

But Ghost pulls him away before he can even open the novel
Ghost pulls him away from his reading, and Aaron didn't mind.

Aaron had the day off, and they spent it together. Not just making love, but talking—about many things, Aaron's job included. Ghost didn't come right out and say "I know that you steal things, and I've decided I don't mind"—but he came pretty damn close. And once he had, he discovered it wasn't so difficult to say or to accept. I may write this scene out sometime, but for now I leave the boys (for real this time): They are content, working hard and perhaps closer now than before, but Ghost's thoughts are heavy.

The storybit this time ties in a bit with events from this update. It's a piece of writing I've been worrying over for a good while now—my original version of the scene took a wrong turn and required an entire rewrite; this version is accurate but it makes me slightly uncomfortable and so it's been difficult to complete. Ghost rolls with the punches perhaps more than he should—it's a part of his personality, without it he and his relationship with Aaron would be very different, but it's not always a good thing. This same discomfort is what Ghost faces in this picture update, and neither of us quite know how to resolve it.

Storybit 06: Aaron questions Ghost's sexual history.
1900 words
Takes place shortly before the events in this update and references events in this update.
Contains foul language and a brief depiction of sex.

* * * * *

"I'm absolutely not jealous," Aaron says. "I'm just curious." And Ghost clenches his hand around his fork, because that just doesn't seem like the best start to a conversation. "But what were things with Robert?" Aaron asks.

"Things? There wasn't much. We kissed a few times, that's all. It's over now."

"Yeah. Yeah, I'd gathered that much. Like I said, I'm just curious."

"About what?"

Aaron laughs. "I dunno, dude. About the people you've fucked, I guess."

Ghost puts his fork down on the edge of his plate. Aaron grins, shrugs, takes another bite, but Ghost can see that he's nervous. "I didn't fuck Billy," Ghost says. "I haven't fucked anyone for a while now, except you. Are you really sure you want to know?"

Aaron twirls his fork through his pasta, silver on ceramic pinging softly, and keeps his eye on his plate. "Yeah," he says. "It's something that I don't know about you. Feels like I should."

Ghost nods and says, "I don't mind talking about it. I don't exactly keep a list, though. I've been with a couple of guys, but no one since we moved here and nothing serious since high school."

"Just guys?"

Ghost shrugs as if honestly he hasn't noticed. "Mostly, I guess, but I dated a girl in high school for a pretty long time."

"And you did it?"

This time Ghost just nods.

"And when you say a couple—"

"You really are curious, aren't you?"

"Well, yeah. Aren't you? I mean you don't have to tell me if you don't want to, but if you're gonna then it seems like..." Ghost is only giving Aaron half of his attention; he's tapping his fingers on the tabletop and Aaron falls to silence because Ghost has started to repeat fingers. "Shit," says Aaron softly, and Ghost hesitates before tapping one last time and glancing up.

"About eleven," Ghost says, "that I can remember. Like I said, I don't mind talking about it. Aaron?"

"Seriously, you've fucked eleven people?"

Ghost looks calm. He nods. "Thereabout."

"I just didn't think. You don't seem like the type, you know."

"You learn something new every day, even about me."

"But it took us forever to do it!"

This time Ghost laughs. He picks up his fork again, though dinner has gone a bit cold, and shrugs one shoulder. "I was waiting on you." He takes a bite and chews and Aaron is silent, watching him. "Guys usually come to me," Ghost says after he swallows. "And they rarely take their time. I don't mind it, but it's nothing like what's going on between us."

"But when I kissed you—when I kissed you that first time I could have been anyone and you wouldn't have minded?"


"What the fuck, man."

"But I wouldn't be dating you now. Sometimes it's just sex, Aaron. Sometimes it's just a fling. Haven't you ever done it and not had it mean anything?"

"Well, yeah. But Ghost—"

"No. There's nothing different about what I've done, even if it makes you uncomfortable. And you don't have anything to worry about anyway. Look, let's just forget it. Are you done with dinner?"

At first Aaron doesn't respond, but Ghost takes that as consent enough and starts clearing the table. He's scraping half-eaten spaghetti into the trash when Aaron says, "So you're sort of a slut, then?"

"Sure." Ghost moves on to the sink. He has his back turned, twisting on the hot water and uncapping the dish soap, and he shrugs. "But that's not why I'm sleeping with you. I really like you, Aaron, so why does the past have to matter?"

"Because it's a part of you. Stop washing the fucking dishes and look at me, yeah?"

But Ghost doesn't, so Aaron stands up and walks around the island. Aaron reaches past Ghost to turn off the tap and they stand there, just close enough to touch, and Ghost is still wrist-deep in sudsy water.

"I know I'm being an ass," Aaron says.

"No shit."

"Look, I'm trying to apologize, okay? It's none of my business and I'm glad you told me anyway and I'm not going to let it bother me. I'm not. Really. It's just a lot to take in."

"None of them matter, okay? None of it matters. I don't think about them, I don't compare you to them. What we have is different and I don't take it for granted."

"I just—you're happy with me, right?"

"You're an idiot, Aaron. I—"

And for a change, Ghost doesn't say what's on his mind, even though the words itch on his tongue. What he wants to say is "I love you," but he swallows it back. Instead he says:

"Yes. I'm happy."

"Even if I'm not as good as the rest of them?"

"You're better."

"I never even fucked a guy before you."

"Just trust me, okay? I wouldn't trade you for anything."

"Then I'm not gonna worry about it." Aaron rests his forehead on the back of Ghost's neck, and when he breathes it tickles Ghost's hairline. "It's fine." Water drips from the faucet and soap bubbles dissolve into a scum with floats on the top of the dishwater. Aaron sighs.

He's lying, of course. Aaron can't stop worrying about it, now that he knows, and he's definitely jealous. But in a way, Aaron is thankful, too. He's thankful to every single guy that Ghost has fucked and thankful most of all for Billy, whatever went on between them. Aaron always read the obvious into Ghost's late nights out, back when they were living with Sylvie, but he didn't think about it that much. He figured that Ghost had a fuckbuddy or a girlfriend somewhere, figured he was getting laid and good for him. It wasn't until Robert that Aaron really saw, really knew.

Aaron doesn't remember much about that night. He knows they dropped by the neighbors to introduce themselves and kill a boring evening and score a free dinner. He remembers he was a little surprised that the local celebrity lived so close, but he didn't know anything about Billy's music and didn't care to. All the rest of it he's nearly forgotten. He was talking to someone, and now he doesn't know who. His pocket was heavy with something he'd stolen, but now he can't remember what. What he remembers is glancing over and seeing Ghost—Ghost with his eyes closed and his body pressed up against another man's, Ghost wrapped deep in a kiss, Ghost as if Aaron had never seen him before.

He'd never thought of Ghost in the context of kisses, but after that sight Aaron couldn't shake the thought. He couldn't get the image out of his head either, the misremembered sight of the back of Robert's head and Ghost, clear as crystal, fluorescent-lit and slightly flushed and surprisingly, unexpectedly—sexy. He held that image in his head for days, he jerked off to it, he still had it in his thoughts when he stopped playing foosball, pulled Ghost from his painting, and kissed him for the first time. So, yeah, Aaron is thankful to that bleached-blond bastard and to every single other guy that Ghost has been with. He's glad that Ghost is the kind of guy to kiss strangers. He only wishes that Ghost had been more obvious, that he'd brought those men home and shoved Aaron's head full of unforgettable images years ago. They wasted so much time.

"And it's kind of hot, you know," Aaron says. He leans close against Ghost, feeling Ghost's body heat sink into his bare skin because, as usual, Aaron's just wearing boxer shorts. "The thought of other men fucking you. The thought of you spreading your legs like that. Your hands are gonna wrinkle if you leave them in there."

Water spills over the edge of the countertop as Ghost pulls his hands from the sink and dries them on the hem of his tank.

"Just as long as I'm the last of them," Aaron says, "yeah, it's kind of hot. And I can see what they see in you. I can see why they want to fuck you. I can see why they don't wait." Aaron wraps his arms around Ghost and his hands trail down, over Ghost's damp shirtfront, and he cups the front of Ghost's jeans. "You're already hard," he says softly, and squeezes. "Turn around."

"The dishes," Ghost says.

"Fucking leave them," says Aaron, and he unbuttons Ghost's jeans. Ghost does. He turns around, the back of his shirt growing damp as he leans against the counter, and Aaron pulls down his zipper. "No one else, yeah?" Aaron says, meeting Ghost eye to eye. It takes a moment for Ghost to nod, but that doesn't bother Aaron. All he cares about is the fact that Ghost is saying yes. And when Ghost nods, Aaron sinks to his knees. He blows Ghost there, kneeling on the dirty floor while the dishes soak in the sink.

Ghost clutches the edge of the counter and he closes his eyes; he grits his teeth and his stomach is tense, tied up in nervous knots. He wishes that Aaron would fuck him instead—if Aaron wants to mark Ghost as his own, that seems like the better way to do it. But Aaron doesn't even jerk off. He has his hands on Ghost's ass, holding Ghost close and gripping Ghost's flesh through the jeans, and all of his attention is focused on Ghost. Maybe it's that, or maybe it's the weeks they've spent obsessed with each other's bodies, or maybe it's the tension in the too-bright, too-hard room, but whatever is it is, Ghost's nails are digging into the underside of the kitchen counter and his knees are threatening to buckle. It happens so quickly. It only takes him a few minutes spent gasping in air, and then Ghost comes hot and hard into Aaron's mouth. Aaron swallows around the spasms of his cock, and Ghost moans.

Aaron wipes his mouth with the back of his hand and stands up, knees red from kneeling. Ghost's shirt is half-translucent; his pants are falling down and his dick is hanging out. He feels more exposed than he would if he were nude. When he reaches for Aaron, Aaron takes his hands in his own. "Don't worry about me," Aaron says. "I'm fine. I just needed to see you come. You okay?"

Ghost nods, silent.

"Good." Aaron pulls Ghost close and Ghost leans against him. Ghost takes a few deep breaths, inhaling Aaron's scent, and he starts to feel like he's fine and maybe he doesn't need to throw up after all. Into the silence Aaron says, "I'm really not jealous. And I don't think that you're a slut. Or hell, I dunno. Maybe you are. You're mine, and that's all that matters." Right before Ghost pulls away and does up his jeans, Aaron says, "So I guess I'm saying I'm sorry."

"It's fine," says Ghost, buttoning his fly. "I imagine it comes as a shock. So if we're sharing, Aaron, what about you?"

"What? Oh. A few girls in high school. Three, I guess. Just sex, nothing serious."

Ghost nods, adjusting his wet tank, and says, "Good to know."

Ghost and Aaron: Master List | Next Update
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