Farewell from the Bookshelf!
Please note that GLBT Bookshelf -- the community wiki which was the parent to this fiction blog -- went offline on May 31, 2016, after seven years' service to members.
All Gay Romance will remain online till the end of 2016 in order to give contributors every opportunity to recover materials uploaded here.
Many thanks to all who contributed over the years, and good luck to everyone in your future works!
When Curt meets a man who wants him in his bed as well as in his life, Curt finds himself being led to mysterious places and involved with mysterious and often dangerous men. When Curt learns that this man is definitely not a man he can trust, but is a man who wants him out of the way, Curt is determined to find out why. The answers to this mystery may lie in a young man who knocks on the door of his trailer late one night, a young man who has been watching Curt as he makes his debut as lead actor in a major motion picture. When Curt tries to get close to this young man to find out why he has been watching him, he very quickly discovers that his own life may be in danger. He also begins to wonder if acting is more of a nightmare than a dream.
Curt fell asleep early that night, but awoke to the sound of tapping on his door. He was up and almost in the shower before he realized it was only 2:00 a.m. and that this was a day he was not needed on the set. So who is tapping on my door, he wondered? Curt opened the door to find a young man of seventeen, maybe eighteen, his eyes wide with fear. “Can I help you?” asked Curt. “Um, I just wanted you to know that I like watching you. I come here every day,” the scared voice said. On any given day Curt would see ten to twenty people watching them rehearse. Some of the actors didn’t like the onlookers, but Curt found that it made him work harder knowing that his performance was being critiqued by the ultimate critics. “Thanks, kid,” Curt replied, but sensed the kid might be troubled. He seemed scared of something or someone. I’ve been researching my character too much, Curt thought. “So, what brings you here in the middle of the night?” “I, um, I’ll see you tomorrow,” he said, and started off. “Hey there, wait,” Curt said, and stepped outside to stop the boy. “Come on in for awhile. You shouldn’t be out in the dark.”
The boy followed Curt inside and stood just inside the door. “Have a seat. Want a soda?” The boy said nothing, but Curt grabbed them both a soda and handed one to the boy. Curt sat beside him, still wondering what on earth he was doing out in the dark alone. “I’m Curt. What’s your name?” Looking down, the young man replied, “My name is Lucas, but I like to be called Luke.” “Well, Luke, welcome to Hollywood,” Curt said with a chuckle as he motioned around the inside of his trailer. They sat in silence for awhile. Luke was tired, and in fact he looked like he hadn’t slept in days. “We have the next two days free, so I didn’t want you coming out here for no reason, Luke.” “Thanks. I’d better go.” “No, Luke, it’s okay. Why don’t you stay, okay? What were you starting to tell me at the door?” Luke looked down and spoke so softly that Curt barely heard. “It’s just that you are me. I mean, you are being me and I’m waiting to see what happens to you.”
Curt walked into the bar which was very busy, and ordered the drink he had needed for days, and then another. When he was halfway through his second drink, the bartender asked if he had been to the new steam room yet. “No, I haven’t,” Curt answered, a little confused. “Check it out, on the house,” he offered. “It really loosens you up,” he added. Curt was more than curious now. He finished his drink and headed to the steam room.
Curt walked into a room with a very inviting whirlpool with its shooting jets of water making the water bubble. The room was very well decorated and very clean, with a sign that read, “No clothing allowed.” Curt had no problem with that. The water was warm as Curt lowered himself until he was seated in front of one of the jets. The water felt good on his stiff muscles. The roar of the jets and the bubbling water blocked out any intrusive sounds, and were lulling Curt into a very relaxing state. He closed his eyes and leaned his head back against the side of the pool. In his dreamlike state, Curt did not hear the door open, nor did he hear the man walk in and join him naked in the pool.
Curt wondered how often Michael went to the baths, but didn’t really want to know. He liked Michael and wanted to think that Michael liked him too. “Well, we should probably head back. It will be dark soon.” Curt walked beside Michael back to the Village. Michael added, “It’s safe here, but you still need to be careful at night.” Curt just smiled. Even a beautiful place such as this couldn’t afford someone absolute immunity, he thought. “Would you like to see where I live, Curt? It’s the upper story over the eatery.” “I would, Michael, thanks.” I want to know all about you, Michael, he wanted to say, but did not. They left the beautiful park and walked back to Michael’s.
It was just after 9:00 p.m. when Curt arrived at the center and was rushed into the director’s office. “We met earlier, Curt. I’m Daniel, the director here at the center.” Curt shook his hand, and Daniel informed him that Luke had been kidnapped. “How could he be? The kids are watched here.” “Curt, it was by someone you know.” Curt could not imagine anyone he knew doing anything such as this. “Who?” “There is a man named Michael who has been working in the Davie Village. The owners of the eatery turned him in.” “He told me he owned the place,” Curt was almost shouting now. “He has lied to many business owners in the Village, Curt, and has misled many. He is a hard worker, and disguises his true motives very well. The owners of the eatery feel horrible about this.” Daniel sat beside Curt and tried to calm him down. “But he lives upstairs from the eatery, right?” “No, Curt, that was also a lie. He has offered a place to stay to more than one of our youths here. He gains their trust, and then tries to return them to their former groups demanding money from them. Sadly, when he tries to return the youths their groups no longer want them, and they once again are rejected. Michael has no need for them, and so will often drop them off somewhere on his way back here. We try to convince the youths to return to the center but as you can understand, many are too confused to feel they can trust anyone.” Curt was fuming. “What happens to them?” “We don’t know, Curt. We are desperately trying to improve our services, but can only do so much. There are so many.”
It was quiet tonight and in the stillness, the ringing of Curt’s cell phone sounded like a car alarm. They could see Luke begin to turn his head. Daniel ordered Curt to get down. They were slumped down in the front seat with their faces just inches from each other. Daniel was worried they would lose sight of Luke and Michael. “Does Luke know your ring tone?” “Yes, he does,” confessed Curt. “Stay down, Curt.”
Daniel sat up just enough to focus his lens again on Luke and Michael. He looked around. They were sitting on the ground. Daniel returned to Curt. “They are sitting on the ground. It seems that Luke may have hurt his ankle.” Curt felt even sicker. Then he turned to Daniel. “Luke’s a smart kid, Daniel. Maybe he faked an injury when he heard my phone.” “Thank you, Curt. This is just the break we needed.” Before sitting up, Daniel kissed Curt on the lips as they were slouched together.