Short Story: First Time Seller

Short Story: First Time Seller

Lee needs rent money ASAP. His friend Maddie, a high class call girl, suggests he make himself available to potential “clients” who might help him out of his bind. But when he meets handsome and charming Hugo, Lee’s not sure he wants to keep things strictly business.

Story begins below:

“Don’t look,” Maddie says under her breath, a faint smile tugging her lips. “I think you’ve got an admirer.”

Lee, slightly distracted by the mouthful of tequila he’s just downed—no way is he going to really do this without a little bit of liquid courage in him—looks anyway, a quick glance over his shoulder in the direction of Maddie’s eyes. The glance turns into something else when he catches the gaze of the man across the way; it’s piercing straight into him, the weight of it suddenly leaving him out of breath, so that Lee wonders how it was that he didn’t feel the man watching him before.

“Fuck,” he mutters to Maddie in a stunned voice when he manages to tear his eyes away. He already feels heat crawling up his neck, making its way onto his face. The curse of his Irish background and being too damn light to hide anything. Fuck. “Am I that obvious?”

Beside him, Maddie rolls her eyes. “You’re meant to be obvious, darling. But don’t worry, you look gorgeous in those clothes. Super classy.” She gives a wink at the last bit, as if it’s supposed to make him feel better. “But you’re still sitting here, aren’t you?”

Lee chews on his lower lip and resists the urge to flip on his phone’s camera to check if his flush has subsided. Maddie explained it all back at her apartment. ‘It’s unspoken but common knowledge that the ladies and gentlemen who seat themselves in a certain way at the end of this particular bar are, y’know, available and willing to please.’ 

Maddie peers at Lee’s face, eyes gentling in response to his pensive silence. “If you’re having doubts…”

Lee lets out a steadying breath and shakes his head. No, not doubts, exactly. He’s just experiencing a jolt at the unreality of all this. He’s sitting here in a suit that belongs to Maddie’s rich pseudo-boyfriend, waiting for some man or woman to pick him up for rent money. It’s weird. “No, not doubts. I’m still allowed to feel weird about it, right?”

He receives a small frown from his friend. “I’ve told you—”

“Yeah, yeah, I know. I’m not gonna borrow from you, though. We’re friends, it’d be weird.”

She raises an eyebrow at this. “Weirder than me taking you out here to find a generous trick?”

“Yeah, okay, you’ve got a point.” He doesn’t know whether the thing tickling the back of his throat is a laugh or a sob, and he swallows it down before he can find out. He thinks it was a laugh, though. “Still a no.”

“Well then, that guy is still checking you out. Now would be a good time to let him know you’re, you know…”

Available and willing to please. Is he? He swivels around in his seat and casts another look at the man sitting at one of the tables near the bar. Dark eyes meet his again in a stare that’s just as deliberate as the first time. Lee swallows and feels himself getting red again.

“…interested,” Maddie finishes slowly. She gives a small little chuckle. “Although I guess I’m just wasting my breath.”

There is the scrape of a chair, too-loud in the relative quiet of the restaurant with its light jazz playing softly in the background. The man steps languidly toward them, taking his time, maybe waiting for a sign from Lee, who only swallows again and clenches slippery fingers on his empty cocktail glass. As he approaches, the light from the chandelier in the dining room catches on his black hair and turns it a reddish-brown that matches the warmth of his eyes, which Lee can see clearly now. He’s older than Lee, but not too old; the lines on his starkly handsome face are faint and only become visible as he gets closer.

“Hello.” The man is the first to speak, his voice deep and melodious and slightly accented. Lee can’t place the accent, but then he hasn’t met very many foreign people. The man extends a long-fingered hand, a platinum ring shining dully on his little finger, a single square diamond cut tastefully into the silver. “I’m Hugo. Can I buy you a drink?” Hugo. Is that even a real name? Isn’t that the name of some dude who wrote a bunch of sad books? Lee can only vaguely remember it from high school.

Maddie has to stealthily kick him under the table to start him from whatever zone-out he’d entered, staring at Hugo’s outstretched hand. He sticks his hand out almost jerkily, and Hugo grasps it in his. The clasp is warm, like Hugo’s eyes, crinkling around the edges as he smiles at Lee. He smiles back, and is almost nodding when Maddie kicks him again.

Oh, right. This isn’t a normal pick-up at a bar, even if Hugo is hot enough that Lee would totally fuck him for free.

“H-how about you take me home, instead?” he blurts out, all in a one great rush, and is almost proud of himself for not tacking a smarmy baby on the end just from nerves.

Hugo raises an eyebrow, but his smile doesn’t falter, and he doesn’t let go of Lee’s hand right away. When he does, it’s only to reach over and snatch the cocktail glass out of Lee’s other hand. He sets it on the bar, along with a couple of 50s. “To cover your drinks, then,” he tells Maddie, who looks like she’s struggling not to burst into gleeful laughter. “An apology for stealing your companion prematurely.”

That hand again, offered to Lee like he can take it or leave it. And now’s his chance to change his mind. Except Hugo is looking at him like he’s covered in chocolate or something, and Lee can already feel his cock responding to that blatant interest.

He takes the hand, and they walk together out of the restaurant, Hugo’s fingers pressing gentle warmth into the small of Lee’s back.

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