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[Thank you to all those readers who have not given up on this slow-moving story. However, there is still quite a lot of sex.]
Chapter Twenty: The gay Professor at home
Spurred on by David’s idea, early in January Tom got his microbial bioassay method working. He had approached colleagues in the microbiology lab, and they had told him that a mutant of the type that he needed already existed for several species of bacteria. They were also prepared to let him use their microtitre plate reader. They showed him how to make up, sterilize and inoculate bacterial liquid culture media. Tom chose the species that was easiest to grow to develop his method, and soon he had optimized the growth conditions so that the growing mutant produced massive amounts of his assay material. Then he found to his delight that concentrations of his synthetic material as low as 1 microgram per ml were sufficient to produce an easily measurable inhibition of the production of the assay product. Within a couple of weeks, he had an elegant, quick, simple and sensitive method to measure his synthetic material, even in a crude unpurified sample. He took his data to Sescantante, who was highly impressed. “You’ve been here now just a year, Tom” he said. “It’s time that you gave us a seminar. Is your Italian up to speaking for half an hour about your new method?”
“I might need to talk to some of the microbiologists to get my terminology right,” replied Tom, “but I think I could give the talk in about two weeks’ time. That would give Ben and me chance to compare the animal and microbiological assays and do some statistics on the results.”
“Right, and in the evening of the day you give your talk, I want you and your boyfriend to come to dinner with me. It will give me the opportunity to introduce my new boyfriend, or rather, man-friend to you.”
“It would need to be a Wednesday if you want my partner Luca to be there, as it’s the only evening that he doesn’t work.”
“OK, that’s fixed then!”
Tom’s seminar was a great success. Effectively, he had only been doing research for six months. The first six months of his stay had really been about finding his way in the lab, getting his spoken Italian up and running and generally adjusting to a life in a strange land. Ben was particularly impressed by his presentation. Because of his quiet introversion, Tom’s profile in the lab had always been low, and this was the first time that some of his colleagues had really had an opportunity to find out what he was like. Being a reserved and modest kind of person, Tom was not unduly elated by his success, but it did help to strengthen his self-confidence.
The evening at Prof Sescantante’s villa was very interesting. They had been told to dress formally and to bring overnight bags to avoid an expensive cab journey home, because there would be no question of driving after a boozy evening. That enabled them to travel on the bus. Luke felt mildly uneasy about an invitation that included a bed for the night, but said nothing at the time to Tom, except to suggest that since they would be getting a lot to drink, it might be better not to do any shagging when they got to bed that night.
Clad in designer suits, they sat down to dinner in a very opulent dining room. There were just the four of them present. The Professor was the most informally dressed. His companion was wearing a very stylish suit that had obviously cost an arm and a leg. He was introduced as Sebastiano, the new boyfriend. Sebastiano was about 35, making him only five years younger than Sescantante, and was handsome and fit-looking. By profession he was a lawyer, who had known the Professor for years. Curiously, it was only recently that the two men had discovered that they were both gay. It did not seem as if they were very much in love, but they seemed to be on very comfortable and intimate terms. Sebastiano, or Bastian as he liked to be called, was a friendly and amusing man.
Sescantante asked if they should converse in English for Tom’s benefit. He did not seem to think that Luke would have any language problems. Tom said that there was no need to talk in English as far as he was concerned, so they continued to speak Italian. Bastian spoke quite entertainingly about the gay world of Trabizona, which was a closed book to both the boys and the Professor, for different but obvious reasons. He did suggest that the four of them might go out one evening for a meal at a gay restaurant, of which apparently there were two in Trabizona. The boys agreed, slightly warily, to this proposal.
The meal was long, elaborate and very enjoyable. Background music was operatic, played very quietly. Tom at one stage noted a recording by his father-in-law, David. There was a lot of wine: a different one for each course, with Prosecco before the meal and Marsala with the coffee. Sescantante was an expert on Italian wines and told them a lot about each one. Luke was fascinated to learn that Marsala had been invented in Sicily by an Englishman in the nineteenth century. illegal bahis
The meal had been cooked and was served by a charming middle-aged lady whom Sescantante introduced as his housekeeper, and remarked with a grin that she was one of the few housekeepers to Italian bachelors who was not sleeping with her boss! Bastian said, “I should hope not! I would leave you if I thought you were betraying me with a woman!” Everyone giggled uproariously at this.
The conversation got on to music, and when the two older men found that they could both sing and play the piano, the two boys were asked to perform. Sescantante supplied music, and Luke selected the Mozart aria ‘Non piu andrai farfallone amoroso’ from ‘Le Nozze di Figaro’ and they performed it with inebriated enthusiasm. They got loud applause from their audience of two. Looking through the Professor’s sheet music collection, they found vocal/piano music for a Mozart concert aria, ‘Per questa bella mano.’ Although neither of them knew it, the tune looked very attractive, so they sightread it once each and then, by now even further inebriated, Luke sang it to Tom’s accompaniment. He had to stand behind Tom, so that they could both read from the same page of music, and he rested his hand on Tom’s right shoulder. Conscious of the words, ‘By this fair hand, by these sweet looks, I swear, my love that I will never love anyone but you,’ Tom turned his head and kissed Luke’s hand, and in so doing, missed a few notes before neatly catching up with Luke’s singing. By the end of the song, they were both in fits of giggles. The two older men joined in the laughter before applauding.
By now it was very late, and as everyone had to work the next day, they all went to bed. Sescantanto and Bastian continued to giggle as they went into their bedroom. “The English are just as demonstrative and hot-blooded as Italians when they get a few drinks inside them to remove their inhibitions!” said the Professor. Tom and Luke, after washing and cleaning their teeth, said their prayers and collapsed into bed. They slept extremely soundly and were awakened by Tom’s alarm clock in time for breakfast, whereafter the Professor offered them a lift into town and the lab in his car. In spite of Luke’s misgivings, they had had a wonderful time. Tom was starting to like his boss.
Chapter Twenty-one: Luke’s twenty-fourth birthday
Tom was so thrilled by the glorious melody of ‘Per questa bella mano’ that he downloaded the music from the internet and started to learn it. He carefully copied down the words and one early evening when Luke was at work, he went to an upmarket jeweller’s in the centre of Trabizona and ordered an engraved eighteen-carat gold bracelet for Luke’s birthday present in February. The inscription that he ordered, to be engraved on the inside of the bracelet read: ‘Caro Luca mio: Non amero che te. 6.2.20–‘ (My darling Luke: I will love no-one but you. 6 February 20–). When Luke’s birthday arrived, it was a day when there was no performance, so he was home at 6 pm, and Tom came home early. Tom had booked a table at Agostino’s, a chic restaurant in the city centre.
They put on their Armani suits and strolled gently into the city, arriving in time for their booking at 7 pm. “I’m fed up with eating late!” said Luke, “It leaves nothing left of the evening.” They began with their usual bottle of Prosecco, holding hands under the table as they drank. They went steadily through the menu, in a way that they found impossible when eating after 10-30, with antipasta, soup, Luke’s favourite saltimbocca with a bottle of Barolo, and finished with tiramisu. They then moved to the bar for coffee and Marsala. Just before the dessert, Tom got out the gift-wrapped box and passed it over to Luke, who opened it and squealed with delight when he saw the contents. When he read the inscription, tears began to run down his cheeks. Ignoring the other customers, he stood up quietly, walked round the table and threw his arms round the still sitting Tom and kissed him passionately, before resuming his seat. “Thank you, my darling boy,” he said, “I shall cherish this till the day I die, and wear it every day!” The bracelet was expandable, quite narrow, rather less than 20 mm wide and looked beautiful against Luke’s brown skin.
Tom gazed at him in adoration. “It’s so wonderful to be able to buy nice things for you without having to worry about the money,” he said. “I’m glad that you like jewellery, because it enhances your beauty. Come on, let’s go home, and I’ll give you another birthday present that I am currently nourishing between my legs, and which is making me damp!” It was a testimony to the progress that Tom had made in speaking, that he managed to say this in Italian! He then went on to quote a poem that he had found in one of Luke’s books, the first of the sixteenth century poet Pietro Aretino’s ‘Sonnetti lussuriosi’:
‘Fottiamci, anima mia, fottiamci presto Perché tutti per fotter nati siamo; E se tu il cazzo adori, io la potta amo, e saria il mondo un cazzo senza questo.’
(Let’s illegal bahis siteleri fuck, my love, let’s fuck at once for we are all born to fuck; and if you adore the prick and I the cunt, without this the world will be a total prick.)
“I’d never have understood those lines if you, my sweet boy, had never taught me all those dirty Italian words!”
“Those sonnets were never for hundreds of years translated into English,” said Luke, “and when they were, they used words like ‘sword’ and ‘sheath’ rather than prick and cunt! Aretino should appeal to us a lot, because he liked shagging boys as well as girls.”
They paid their bill and left, to the accompaniment of knowing grins from the waiters. Although they were not regular customers at Agostino’s, the waiters had rapidly got them weighed up as gay. When they got home, they got ready for bed in record time. They never wore pyjamas or T-shirts, or anything else, in bed. Tom pulled the duvet back and pushed his partner on to his back on the bed. Starting at Luke’s lips, he kissed him all the way down his neck, where he left a love-bite, down his shoulders to his nipples, where his lips lingered a long time nibbling the nipple and pulling with his teeth on the sparse hair surrounding each one. He continued his downward voyage calling at various ports on the way. At Luke’s navel he spent some time kissing, licking and nibbling, before following the treasure trail down to the black forest surrounding Luke’s stiff and slimy cock. Ignoring the temptation to suck it, he spread Luke’s legs, lifted them on to his own shoulders and pushed his face into the perineal gap and began to lick Luke’s balls, and take them one at a time into his mouth. Luke moaned with pleasure and almost fainted with desire at his mate’s loving attentions. As always, he never understood how Tom always knew what buttons to press to send him wild with desire.
Tom reached for the lube, and applied it in the usual way, both inside and outside Luke’s sweet starfish. He rolled a condom on to his prick, and in no time at all had slipped it into the treasure house. In spite of the alcohol inside him, he was as clear-headed as usual and he proceeded to give Luke the fucking of his life. Luke nearly went crazy with delight, and after Tom’s dick had hit his prostate a couple of times, he came violently, shooting his load all over both their bellies. Tom continued his work for several minutes, before he in turn came into the prophylactic deep inside his boyfriend, experiencing as he did so that glorious sensation of the outpouring of God’s love, which always gave him a sacramental feeling. He gently slipped out of Luke’s love-hole and started to lick Luke’s seed off his belly, before lowering himself on top of his lover, with some of his weight still on his knees. He had no desire to squash Luke with his weight! After a few minutes he rolled over and lay on his back beside Luke, the condom still hanging loosely from his cock. Luke rolled on to his side, reached over and gently pulled off the condom from Tom’s tool and knotted it, before dropping it on the floor and burying his face in the hair on Tom’s chest. They then said a prayer of thanks together before falling asleep with a crisp layer of dried man-juice on both their bellies.
Chapter Twenty-two: Unhappy Leonora
One night in March, Tom’s cellphone rang. It was Leonora. “Tom, my exams are only a few weeks away, and I’m desperately lonely. Please can I come and see you both this weekend?”
“Of course you can. Will you want to stay?”
“Yes, Friday and Saturday nights, please.”
“No problem! I’ll make your bed up.” Leonora arrived about 8 pm on the Friday evening. Luke of course was at work. No sooner had Tom opened the door to Leonora than she put her arms round him tightly and kissed him very, very affectionately. She came in, deposited her bag and sat down to a cup of coffee that Tom had made for her and a plate of cakes. She smiled at him slightly tearfully. He said to her, “Can you wait to eat late? About 11 pm? On Fridays, I meet Luke after work, and we have very late dinner in the restaurant next to the Teatro Musicale. We’re regular customers and we don’t have to wait long for our meal. Is that OK?”
“Yes,” she said, “I want to be alone with you for a bit. I want you to make love to me!” Tom could not believe what he had just heard.
“You are sweet, and I am quite happy to kiss and cuddle, but I couldn’t go further than that,” he replied. “Luke and I have an understanding about making love to other people, and he wouldn’t mind me shagging you just once, as long as I told him about it. But the problem is that as far as women are concerned, I’m a virgin. And I guess that you are a virgin too. I could do it with an experienced woman, who knows what to do and the right sort of talk to turn me on, but I’m pretty sure that if I tried to shag you, I would experience what they nowadays call ‘erectile dysfunction.’ What we used to call impotence, in other words. You wouldn’t want to get canlı bahis siteleri all excited about a man making love to you and then being let down by him failing to get it up, if you don’t mind my rather crude language, would you? And in any case, why this rush to lose your virginity? Have you changed your mind about the convent?”
“Oh, Tom, I don’t know what’s the matter with me. I don’t know what I want! I haven’t lost my faith, but I think I’ve lost my vocation.” Tom took her into his arms, feeling like the weaver in ‘The foggy, foggy, dew.’ (‘She sobbed, she sighed, she damn’ near died, She said, What shall I do-oo?’). He wrapped his right arm round her shoulders and with his left hand caressed her right breast, while he glued his lips to hers, opened her mouth with his tongue and poked it into her mouth. After an interval of not realizing what was happening, she brought her own tongue into contact with his.
Leonora was in a state of total emotional turmoil. Much of this was caused by loneliness. She did not have a lot of friends, and missed her parents and family even after four years of living away from home. The imminence of her final exams and the prospect of a radical change in her life, totally unsettled her. She had no friends with whom she could discuss her feelings, and her spiritual director, an old priest, was totally useless in advising a young girl. Or not so young, because she was now 24, the same age as Luke. The ease with which Tom and Luke had frightened off her stalker gave her an exaggerated idea of their heroism, and her gratitude focused on Tom, because she knew from kissing Luke that although he was sweet, he was totally cold as far as women were concerned. She liked holding his hand, but only because it felt warm and comfortable. Tom, with his muscular build and his tenderness towards women, his thoughtfulness and concern, had become in her imagination an object of love. When she heard his protest that he could never have sex with her, she was rather relieved. She didn’t (quite understandably) see how genital intimacy with a man would actually solve the problem. What she needed was companionship and social intimacy with friends. She did not realise that by telling Tom that she wanted him to make love to her that she was actually sending the wrong message. Men all interpret lovemaking as the preliminary to sex, whereas what Leonora wanted was warmth and companionship.
Tom started to realize why Luke was so firm about not wanting anything to do with women. Although he, Tom, liked women, their bodies and physiology were a closed book to him. He had never actually seen a woman naked in the flesh, only on porn web sites. He knew that they had a messy event involving blood leaking from their bodies every month, and that this was said to affect their behaviour. But faced with a real live woman who seemed to want him, he was in a total dilemma. If he said to Leonora that he would never make love to anyone except his darling Luke, this would leave her unconsoled and disappointed. But if he tried to fuck her and failed, that would be leave her in an even worse state. And, being female, her reluctance to tell him in plain words what she wanted made the whole business an even greater dilemma. Above all, with her exams being close, he had to make sure that he comforted her rather than upset her.
He thought about his first few times with Luke. This dilemma had never happened. Both of them were full of burning passion and desire, and what followed required no premeditation. How could he make Leonora happy without disappointing her?
She smelt only of scented soap, she obviously did not use perfume. She sniffed his Storing pour Homme aftershave, and was puzzled by the strange scent. She plucked up courage to speak. “What’s that fragrance that I can smell? I remember that Luke used to use it as well.”
“It’s a Belgian male perfume called Storing pour Homme. Not many men use it nowadays, but if you look it up in Wikipedia, you’ll find that it has a reputation dating from the 1970s of being widely used by gay men. I always think about lovemaking as a preliminary to sex. But you just want to be warm and close and to feel loved, don’t you?
“I’ll tell you what: tell your landlady that you are going off for two weeks somewhere quiet to revise for your exams, and come and move in with us. Luke won’t mind. You were a great comfort to him when we were apart for a year. Your trips to the opera with him were the highlight of his stay in Bologna. If you need to go to Bologna for a lecture or to use the library, it’s only half-an-hour on the train. I am out from 9 in the morning to around 7 in the evening, Luke is out from 10 till 6 on days when there’s no opera performance, and from 10 in the morning till 10-30 at night on the days that there is a performance, except on Saturdays, when he starts at 5 pm, unless there’s an extra rehearsal. So you’ll have plenty of time to yourself to get on with your exam revision, and every morning and evening you’ll have company. You can use our laptop computer. At the weekend, we’ll be able to go out together, and maybe on a Sunday we will go and see Luke’s mother and half-sister and her father near Verona. If you don’t want to go to Bologna, you could get a ticket to use Trabizona university library.”
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