||[Sep. 29th, 2006|08:44 am]
|||||My baby thinks he's a train... Roseanne Cash||]|
Ed and Hank
Part 12 - Even Later Wednesday Evening
"Goin' through some mighty rough country tomorrow,
you'd better have some beans..."*
By: myeyesaintblue Quote: *"Treasure of the Sierra Madre", 1948. Pairing: Ed & Hank Rating: PG-13, language, adult stuff Disclaimer: I know somewhere out there are two guys named Ed and Hank who at some point in their lives met the amazing Ms. Proulx and told them their story. Well, at least Hank did. Jack and Ennis belong entirely to Ms. Proulx. Ed and Hank belong only to each other. Still losing money. Too lazy to look for a job in town though. Feedback: Much appreciated.
Part 1: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/456.html
Part 2: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/698.html
Part 3: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/897.html
Part 4: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/1101.html
Part 5: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/1339.html
Part 6: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/2024.html
Part 7: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/2157.html
Part 8: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/2471.html
Part 9: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/3719.html
Part 10: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/4776.html
Part 11: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/5470.html
Part 1: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/3394.html
Part 2: http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/4258.html
Part 12, Even Later Wednesday Evening:
Hank could have kicked himself from here to Sunday, “Think I saw Jesus...?!?” What the hell had he been thinking? With Ed’s upbringing, something like that could spook him even more easily than a crowded town had. But Hank hadn’t been thinking. The first time was incredible. Fast and explosive. Three years of longing released in a raging firestorm. But that second time… Ed beneath Hank...gasping and moaning Hank’s name over and over. For a while there Hank believed he’d actually died and gone to heaven.
Hank glanced sideways at Ed. Had he noticed? Was he going to bolt again? Didn’t look like it. Ed still looked glazed over. Like Hank felt. Didn’t even look like he’d heard Hank. Then Ed turned his head and looked at Hank.
"Good ta see ya."
"Good ta see you too Ed."
Hank smiled and breathed a sigh of relief. Ed hadn’t heard. Hank turned onto his side, facing Ed. He reached over and touched Ed’s face. Running his fingers lightly from Ed’s forehead, down along his cheek, across his jaw line and down his neck. Seemed real enough. So hard to believe though…
Ed sighed and closed his eyes, then opened them and said, “Cain’t stay here Hank.”
Hank’s heart fell hard. Could have sworn he even heard it hit the floor with a thud. “Shit.” Hank thought, “Guess that’s real enough. Thought they’d at least have a couple of days together…”
“Ed, I thought…”
“Shit. Not how I meant it. S’alright Hank.” Ed sighed, “Sorry... Tha’ I left earlier. So rattled by all them people even drove off in the wrong direction. Pulled over after a while. Sat there thinkin’ ‘bout what ta do. Had ta see ya… But jus’ cain’t stay here. So’s I stopped ‘n got us a tent ‘n some other campin’ stuff. Jus’ the bare bones. Thought if they wasn’t gonna stick ya fer the room…maybe we could go up inta the mountains.”
Relief and happiness washed over Hank like a flash flood. Thought he could even hear the whoosh of the water in his ears. Then a big old piece of reality hit him right between the eyes, “Want ta do this Ed. Ya don’ know how bad. Don’ care none ‘bout the room. But... ya know… most mountains are pretty busy ‘n the summertime too.
“Yeah. Know tha’. Don’ know this area real well so’s the guy at the store gave me directions ta a place where a fella can pretty much be by hisself. Uh… I mean… We can be… If our trucks’ll make the road.”
Hank grinned at Ed, “Damn trucks’ll make tha’ road if’n I have ta push ‘em up there ma self.” Hank paused, “D’ya think we should jus’ take one truck?” Hank didn’t want Ed more than an arm’s length away for any longer than necessary. And preferred him a helluva lot closer.
“Nah. Better have both jus’ ‘n case somethin’ happens ta one.”
“How long ya got?”
“Whole week. Weren’t no problem. Ain’t never taken no time off before. All jus’ jealous ‘cause I was goin’ ta the rodeo.”
Hank let out a whoop then got up and started trying to pull Ed with him.
Ed protested, “Didn’ mean we had ta leave this second, dumbass.”
“Ain’t leavin’. Cain’t see ‘bout the room ‘til the mornin’” Hank continued tugging on Ed, “Thought we should get our money’s worth outta this room. Nice unused bed with clean sheets right next ta us. Seems a shame ta waste it….”
Ed allowed himself to be pulled up, then veered off towards the bathroom, “Gonna grab a quick shower first. Good idea though. Make it look like both beds been slept in.”
Hank laughed, “Think the maid’s gonna know weren’t a lotta sleepin’ goin’ on in this here room.” Hank swore to himself and tensed as the words left his mouth, but Ed had already turned on the water and hadn't heard him. Hank walked into the bathroom just as Ed stepped into the shower, “Want some company in there? Wash yer back fer ya?”
Ed leaned out of the shower and kissed Hank. “Sorry Hank. Need a break. Gotta catch ma breath. Be right out though.”
“My turn next then.”
When Hank was done with his shower he paused in the doorway, looking at Ed. Ed looking at him. Hank’s chest suddenly felt tight and his throat closed up. He couldn’t breathe. This was what he wanted. All he wanted. Ever. Ed with him. Ed looking at him just like that. Waiting for Hank to cross that small room and come to him.
Hank crossed that small space and went to Ed. Crawling on top of him. Kissing him. Drawn out and slow this time. Kissing every inch of him. Everything drawn out and slow this time. No hurry now. They had the whole damn week.
Hank had no problem with the room. Their stop at the grocery store was a little more interesting. Ed didn’t want to go in at first. But Hank convinced him there wasn’t anything unusual about two fellas going grocery shopping before a camping trip. As they shopped Hank could see Ed relaxing as he realized no one was giving them a second glance. They argued good-naturedly back and forth about what they should bring. Hank made fun of Ed wanting to buy Spaghetti-Os. Ed waited ‘til Hank went on ahead then snuck a few cans into the cart anyway.
Then there were the beans. As Ed rounded a corner with the cart Hank was lying in wait about half way down the aisle, armed with more than a few institutional-sized cans of beans. Reminded Hank of the depth-charges from those old submarine movies. When Hank saw Ed turn the corner he started rolling one can after the other down the aisle towards Ed, yelling “Beans away!” with each roll and making ‘explosion’ sounds to go with them.
Hank could see Ed trying to look annoyed but struggling not to laugh as he yelled at Hank to cut it out. Ed managed to stop two cans and pick them up before he started laughing so hard that he had to use the cart to hold himself up, leaving all the other giant cans of beans to roll right on past him. Hank, having no cart, soon sank helplessly to the floor, laughing his ass off at Ed. They had almost managed to stop laughing when a stern glare from a middle-aged housewife in curlers set them off all over again.
Finally, giant cans of beans returned to the shelf and all other shopping done, Hank stopped in front of the Vaseline. Looking around to make sure no one else was nearby he lowered his voice, “Hey Ed. Got a jar this size.” Hank held up a jar, “Didn’ want ta be too optimistic. Think we’re gonna need 'nother one like it?”
Ed turned beet red, grabbed the biggest jar off the shelf, dropped it in the cart then quickly fled the store, leaving Hank alone in the aisle, grinning like an idiot.
Ed got the last laugh though. Right before checking out Hank saw a can of lima beans in the cart. And a can of kidney beans. And green beans, wax beans, pinto beans, white beans and baked beans. He’d thought the cart was looking kind of full. Every time Hank had turned his back Ed must’ve snuck another can of beans into it. Hank laughed as he returned the despised beans to the shelf, then grabbed a Frisbee and a couple of squirt guns before checking out. Couldn’t be naked all the time, could they?
As Hank got close to the trucks he yelled “Got all yer beans, dumbass” to a grinning Ed then tossed the Frisbee to him. Hank quickly hid the squirt guns in his truck while Ed chased down the Frisbee he had failed to catch. Hank loaded the groceries into the back of Ed’s truck then smiled to himself as he checked over the camping gear, making sure they had everything they needed. Hank turned towards Ed, “Thought ya only got the bare necessities?”
“Well, don’ rightly know if that nice, thick piece a foam is a bare necessity.” Hank had been reluctant to leave those soft, comfortable beds behind and couldn’t hide how happy he was to see that piece of foam. Now if only Ed had hot and cold running water, a shower and a toilet in the back of that truck too....
Ed moved one step closer to Hank and lowered his voice, “Know yer tough. All tha’ rodeoin’ ‘n all… But…know ya bruise easy too… Don’ wantcha all black ‘n blue ‘cause ya keep gettin’ caught ‘tween me ‘n the ground.”
“Close yer mouth, dumbass, or a big ol’ bee’ll fly right in.” Ed grinned, “’Sides, figure it were worth the money. Should last fer years.”
“Years?” Hank thought. Then he hesitated, but couldn’t stop himself, “Uh… Nora like ta camp?”
“Nope. Hates it.” Ed got into his truck and slammed the door. “Jus’ follow me. If ya fall behind I’ll stop ‘n wait fer yer sorry ass.”
Hank grinned then, “Won’ fall behind. Be righ’ up on yer sweet ass the whole way.”
Ed turned bright red again, gunned his truck and started off. Hank laughed as he ran towards his own truck yelling after Ed, “Hey, yer the one who started it!”
Hank pinched himself. Made sure he wasn’t dreaming. Maybe everything was going to be okay. He’d been worried. Even if Ed showed up, how could it be the same as it had been? Last night was great. Beyond great. But this morning had been awkward. They had worn themselves out, over and over again, and had slept in pretty late. Hank had just woken up and was taking in the sight of Ed lying next to him, when a buddy of Hank’s knocked on the door. Wanted to know if Hank was okay, if he needed anything. The panic on Ed’s face as he was startled awake by that knock and bolted into the bathroom to hide was almost comical. Almost.
And that’s when Hank knew that friend of his wanted to be more than just friends. Hank had suspected it since he last ran into him and some other rodeo buddies in Cheyenne months ago. Before Hank went back to his folk’s place. But he hadn’t been sure. The signs were pretty subtle. But here he was at the door, thinking Hank might not be feeling well and wanting to take care of him. Hank felt like he had to go to the door. Opened it, not too wide, but wide enough. “Thanks fer askin’. ’M okay though. Don’ need nothin’.”
Hank’s friend peered past him, looked at the rumpled beds, looked at the clothes scattered on the floor, looked at Hank. “Sorry… guess ya got company. Jus’ got worried after ya didn’ show up las’ night. Said ya weren’t feelin’ good.”
“Yeah. Weren’t fer a while. Was comin’ ta join y’all when ma friend came back.”
“He… He stickin’ ‘round fer a while then?”
“Nah… I mean… I ain’t either. We… We’re goin’ up ta the mountains. Do some campin’. Fishin’ maybe…”
Hank could see the disappointment in this fella’s eyes.
“Well. Maybe see ya at the next rodeo or somethin’”
“Yeah. Maybe see ya then.” Hank’s friend turned and walked away and Hank closed the door, afraid to turn around and face Ed.
But Ed didn’t say anything about Hank's friend coming to the door. Didn’t say much of anything at all to Hank. Just told him he was going to take another shower and that maybe they should get going pretty quick then.
Hank had been relieved. Even if Ed wasn’t going to talk to him, at least it seemed like he was still planning on going camping with Hank. They left the room a few minutes apart, agreeing to meet in the grocery store parking lot. Hank was relieved again when he saw Ed’s truck parked at the store. Relieved. Seemed to be the emotion of the day.
And then, that transformation. In the grocery store of all places and in the parking lot afterwords. Hank caught a glimpse of the best Ed there was. He was still in there. The Ed from the middle part of that summer. After Ed got kind of used to the idea of them being together and before the real world came crashing down on him. On them. And best of all, Ed had mentioned the future. Sure, in that vague Ed-kind-of-way. And no doubt not exactly how Hank would like it to be. But still…any future with Ed was better than any future without Ed.
Following Ed’s truck up that narrow, rough road, Hank’s heart was.…
Hank stopped typing when he heard Ed groan. He turned to look at him, enjoying the view as Ed yawned and stretched. Ed got out of bed and walked past Hank, running his hand across Hank’s shoulders as he passed him on his way to the bathroom.
On Ed’s way back he stopped and bent over, hugging Hank as he sat at the computer, kissing him on the neck. Hank turned his head and kissed Ed, “Hey, Ed. Hope I didn’ wake ya.”
“Nope. Woke up on ma own. Watcha doin? As if I hafta ask.”
“Writin’ ‘bout when we got together in Cody after them years apart.” Hank laughed, “Well, didn’ ‘xactly ‘write’ ‘bout some a it. Love yer dick. Love yer ass. Love every inch a ya. But cain’t never do justice to it in words.”
“Ya do justice ta doin’ it though. More ‘n do it justice. Should give ya some kinda certificate. Somethin’ long them lines. Fuckin’ medal. Maybe even a trophy. Real big one.”
“Thanks, ‘preciate tha’. 'N backatcha.” Hank grinned, “Jus’ cain’t write like them other writers. ‘Stead told the story a tha’ night usin’ some a them postcards I sent ya. You know, ‘them other ones’.”
Ed laughed, “Yeah. Got the idea a most a them right ‘nough when I got ‘em. Hell, some a them made me turn ten shades a red.”
“Here. Take a look.” Hank grinned. “Didn’ realize they could tell a story when I was sendin’ them to ya.”
“Jeez. Didn’ know jus’ how dirty they were. When ya put ‘em all together like tha’... ‘Specially tha’ racin’ car ‘n tha’ ‘Mornin’ Glory’ pool there. Shit. Tha’s pretty bad Hank.”
“Hell, coulda been a lot worse. This is the card I was thinkin’ a usin’ ‘stead a tha’ racer.” Hank laughed as he handed Ed a postcard.
“Damn! Pro’bly be arrested if’n ya use tha’ one.”
“Ain't illegal. Jus’ a ‘natural formation’.”
“Yeah, but when ya put ‘em together like tha’…”
“Ain’t nothin’ wrong with it Ed. Jus’ funny. Kinda like they used ta do in them old movies. Didn' use tha’ one anyway.”
“Gotta admit. Is pretty funny. ‘N I ‘preciate ya makin’ me the train, ‘stead a makin’ me the racin’ car. Like trains.”
“Know ya like trains. ‘N yer bigger than me so it seemed fittin’.”
“Ain’t tha’ much bigger.”
“Know yer not tha’ much bigger. Ain’t like they’re ta scale, dumbass.”
Ed laughed again, “’N tha’ tunnel. Don think I ever told ya. When them crowds spooked me in Cody… ‘N I drove the wrong way outta town. Ended up headed towards Yellowstone. Damn pretty drive. Drove righ’ through the tunnel from tha’ postcard ‘fore I pulled over ta think ‘bout what ta do. Pretty funny. Ya usin' it now ta describe tha’ nigh’ ‘n all.”
“Ya never told me tha’”
“Guess I had other things on ma mind.”
Hank laughed, “Me too, Ed. Me too.”
“Ya picked the righ’ song too. ‘Ring a Fire’ Exactly what it was like. From the minute I got tha’ postcard. Was so damn happy. Knew I shouldn’ be. Knew I couldn’ stay away from ya. Got me a calendar. Counted the days. Crossed ‘em out one by one. Then when I saw ya in tha’ coffee shop. Never told ya. Part a the reason I ran. ‘Sides the crowds. Felt like I was fallin’. Was all I could do ta keep from grabbin’ ya righ’ then ‘n there ‘n front a all them people. Scared me bad. Feelin’ was so strong. Felt like I was burnin’ up. Then when ya grabbed m’ arm, hell, thought I was gonna, whadda they call it… spontaneously combust. Guess we did. Later. Jus' like tha' oil well.”
"Sure as hell did."
Ed paused, “Speakin' a which... same time convinced I’d burn in hell fer lovin’ ya. Even jus’ fer thinkin’ on ya so much. Damned fer all eternity. Whole bit. Fire, pitchforks, endless torment ‘n sufferin’. Was almos’ resigned ta it ma self. Didn’ want ta drag ya down with me though. See ya suffer the same fate.” Ed shook his head, “Sure was hard ta get past all tha’. Even today, sometimes still get twinges from tha’ pitchfork pokin’ me in the ass.”
“Sure jus’ ain’t me back there?”
Ed grinned, “Could be.”
”Sure glad ya did. Get past it I mean.”
“Yeah. Then jus’ had ta get past ‘most everyone else ‘sides God hatin’ us too. Piece a cake compared ta tha’ religion stuff though.”
“Liar. Know tha’ was jus’ as hard fer ya. Maybe harder. Ain’t like God’s personally glaring at ya as ya walk through town.”
“Nah. God uses lightnin’ bolts." Ed went back to looking at the postcards, "Hey… Think ya made a mistake here.”
“What?” Hank knew Ed was deliberately changing the subject, but wasn’t about to stop him.
“Seems like ya left out a lotta tha’ night. If’n I’m recallin’ correctly.”
“Yer recallin’ correctly.” Hank laughed, “Ran outta ‘them other’ postcards. Don’ rightly think there’s ‘nough postcards in the world ta describe tha’ night. Had ta resort ta writin’ again. What I been doin’ tonigh' ‘cause I couldn’ sleep.”
“Can I read it?”
“Ain’t never stopped ya before.”
Ed started reading over Hank’s shoulder. “Lucky I was pretty much struck senseless after tha’ second time. Didn’ hear ya say tha’. ‘Bout ya seein’ Jesus, ‘n all. Back then prob’ly woulda bolted.”
“What?" Hank grinned, "Part where yer ‘neath me, moanin’ ma name over ‘n over?”
Ed went back to reading, then laughed, “Didn’ hear wha' ya said bout the maid. Poor woman. Never even thought ta leave her a tip. Hell, first time I ever even stayed in a motel.”
Hank grinned, “Don’ worry. I tipped her pretty damn good.”
“Remember ya comin’ out from yer shower. Hair tousled, towel round yer waist. Lookin’ at me like tha’. Thought ma heart like ta ha’ burst. Ya looked so… Don’ even ha’ the words fer it now... Best lookin’ thing I ever laid eyes on.” Ed kissed Hank again, “Still are. ‘N like ya said, all I ever wanted in this life.”
Ed laughed, “But tha’ grocery store. Hell. Rollin’ them damn beans at me. Hurt ma gut was laughin’ so hard. Never laughed in ma life ‘fore I met you. ‘Fore tha’ summer on tha’ mountain. Didn’ even know what fun was. ’N cain’t believe ya remembered I liked Spaghettio-Os. Loved tha' crap. Jus’ like a little kid. Shit. Hard ta believe how young we was. Practic'lly jus’ kids ourselves.”
"Damn. When tha’ knock came at the door.” Ed shook his head, “Shit. Was so scared we’d be caught. Then I heard ya talkin’ ta tha’ guy. Could tell he liked ya. Even from tha’ little bit I heard. Got real jealous. Wanted ta punch him in the nose. But knew I had no right. ‘N the poor guy sounded so sad. Jus’ tried not ta think ‘bout it. Jus’ thought ‘bout getting’ ya up tha’ mountain. Havin’ ya all ta ma self. Fer a little while at least.”
“Didn’ know ya were jealous. Like it when yer jealous. S'cute.”
“Mos’ people readin’ this think yer cute. Think yer real cute. I think yer cute too.”
“Jus’ ‘cause yer tough as nails don’ mean ya cain’t be cute.”
“Shit.” Ed grabbed Hank’s arm and pulled him up off the chair and over to the bed, “I’ll show you how not cute I am.”
Ed swung Hank down onto the bed, following right behind.
Hank moaned, “Damn cute...”
“How ‘bout... this then?”
“God… Ed… Yeah… Cute... Mmmm… as hell…”
Hank gasped, “Ed… Jeez… Ed… Ed… ‘S fuckin’… adorable…”
“Damn… Ed… Tha’s… jus’… plain… wrong… Ed… Don’ stop…”