Where Knights Rush In
“A cross between a movie star
And a hero in a book
Romeo comes struttin' in
And everybody looks.”
- Romeo, DOLLY PARTON
* * * *
“I can see it in your eyes,
you're livin' a troubled life
And you've been hurtin'
more and more these days
You don't have to hide it,
don't even have to fight it
Baby all you have to do
is just turn and walk away.”
- Come Cryin' To Me, LONESTAR
When he had entered the church just a few minutes ago, apprehension had tightened his guts. He knew how thin a tightrope Noble was walking, and just because he'd sent him that text – no doubt in a moment of despair – it didn't mean he would welcome Jonah with open arms now that he'd arrived. It was doubtful the guy even really expected him to show up.
The sanctuary had been empty, but voices were coming from the Pastor's office and he'd made his way up the outer aisle past the rows of pews. And when he'd stepped through the office door – you could've heard a pin drop. It had only taken a moment and a quick scan of the room to note that Noble wasn't there. Nor was Rebecca. He'd surmised right then that that wasn't good. If she was with him, then she was trying to talk him down off the ledge – the one he teetered on every so often, ready to plunge into Jonah's arms.
There had been only one occupant in the room he didn't recognize, so he'd assumed it was Jack Hayden. When Jonah had looked at the man, the guy stared back and Jonah just barely caught the quick once over the man gave him. It was brief – but not brief enough for Jonah to miss it, though the others surely had. Healed, my ass.
Jonah had just turned to ask his dad where Noble was – when the office door opened and Rebecca stopped short, instant fury in her eyes. Behind her, Noble froze as Jonah grabbed his stare – and the man's heart leaped into his eyes so fast and forceful it ripped the air from Jonah's lungs and weakened his knees.
“What are you doing here?” A cold chill rippled around Rebecca's question as she stared at him. Every eye was on him, but he only had eyes for Noble who stood rigid with tension and shock. No, he didn't expect you to come here.
“Dad, make him leave.” Rebecca turned to Mason, voice straining. “He shouldn't be here. He is the problem. I don't want him here.”
Jack straightened and took a step forward. “Rebecca is right.” he was speaking to Jonah. “Noble is here for help...to find healing. Your presence could very well set him back. Now if you truly care for him, you will respect his wishes.”
Gazing at Noble, their eyes locked, Jonah murmured, “Oh...I respect his wishes.” he broke from his stance and moved forward, brushing past Rebecca and catching hold of Noble's arm. “We need to talk.”
“What're you doing?” Rebecca stared at him incredulously as he half pushed, half tugged Noble back through the doorway into the sanctuary.
The room was spinning and Noble was caught in it. He could hear Rebecca's raised voice, angry, yelling at Jonah, then at Mason, telling him to make Jonah leave. Somewhere in the turmoil he thought he heard Pastor Rick and Jack both speaking. But Jonah ignored them as his grip on Noble's arm remained secure and he ushered him down the center aisle of the sanctuary.
Noble's mind was fragmented, he couldn't think, or react, when Rebecca told him to come back. But he couldn't, Jonah had a hold of him, he wasn't going of his own free will...was he? You're sure as hell not resisting.
Half expecting the man to drag him outside and throw him in his car, Noble was somewhat startled when he instead took him through the door that led back to the bathroom, then into the bathroom itself.
“What're you...” Noble started when Jonah shut the door hard and locked it.
“I need a door with a lock on it.” Jonah said low, tight. “This was the closest.”
Noble's heart raced like mad, breath puffing. Every nerve in his body seemed to have surfaced. “Jonah...I didn't-”
He was suddenly pinned against the door, Jonah's mouth crushing his in a kiss that blew his mind apart. The man's warm, strong body held him securely in place as Jonah clutched his head, fingers twisting in his hair. A shuddered groan rose audible in the air though Noble couldn't be sure which one of them if had come from. His hands squeezed into fists at his side as Jonah's kiss softened a bit and his warm lips drank of Noble's life essence.
With a will of their own, Noble's hands lifted and rested on Jonah's hips, eyes heavy as the man's kiss seemed endless. This time the moan he heard was rolling up his own throat as the man's soft tongue wrapped around his, sucked gently – inciting other memories of the man sucking him. When his fingers tightened on Jonah's hips and he felt himself drawing the man tighter against him, there was no mistaking the level of both their arousal.
Noble gasped when Jonah's crotch pushed against his, and he instantly tensed, breath shaky.
Jonah drew back, lips pulling out of the kiss but remaining close to Noble's mouth. “Sorry.” he murmured thickly, his fingertips rubbing lightly against Noble's scalp through his hair. “I had to get that one out of the way...or else there was no way in hell I was going to be able to gather my thoughts properly.” With a notable reluctance, he stepped back, his hands slowly sliding away from Noble's head. He leaned against the sink as Noble remained plastered back against the door, heart pounding, afraid to make any sudden moves – not for fear that Jonah would advance on him again, but that he himself might jump on the man.
His text message had drawn Jonah here...now what? He hadn't really expected the guy to show up, and certainly not this quickly. He had to have been in town already. But what was he supposed to do now? Leave with him? Jonah's kiss still warmed his lips and he couldn't pretend he didn't want more of the same, but...They're going to bring your parents in. Your dad. Fear clenched his gut, winding up to squeeze his chest. If his dad caught him with another man, even now...
Noble raised his eyes from the floor, tears glossing his vision, causing Jonah to shimmer before him.
“I didn't come here expecting you to just jump into my arms and run off with me.” a smile quirked his lips. “Although I'm not entirely hating that idea. But nevertheless...”
A storm of emotions churned in the young man's eyes as they glossed over and Jonah had a hell of a time figuring out which emotion was dominating. The intoxicating taste of Noble's sweet kiss was still having its effect, coursing through his body. He'd told the man that he'd had to get that kiss out of the way so he could think clearly – but it wasn't exactly working as planned. Because now all he could think about was stepping back over to him and grabbing himself another dose of that heavenly mouth. And though he knew the man wouldn't resist, he still held himself in check. For now, anyway.
“I'm here, Noble...because I need you to know that I'll always come for you.” his lips pressed tight and he gazed at the man. So needlessly confused. He reached over and wrapped his hand around Noble's and squeezed gently. “I need you to know that I...hear you, Noble. Even when you're not saying anything, I still hear you.” He squeezed his hand again. “Did you think I was playing this morning when I said I wasn't going anywhere?”
Noble lowered his eyes and stared at their hands. Jonah released him and straightened up, gripping the edge of the sink lightly. Come on, baby...you took that step. Don't back peddle now.
“I don't...” Noble shook his head. “I can't...” his face pinched in frustration and confusion, tears rising.
Jonah stepped over and cupped his face. “Hey.” he said softly, “It's okay. I'm not trying to push you, Noble. I know this isn't easy for you.” he kissed his brow. “I'm on your side. Always. No matter what.” He slid his thumbs over the man's cheeks. “I'm not your enemy.”
A shaky breath escaped him. “I know.” he whispered.
A smile curved Jonah's lips and he cocked his head a little. “It's a start.” he murmured. “I'll take what I can get.”
Noble's throat worked against his emotions, as if words were trying to find their way to his lips but were getting lodged beneath the knot in his throat.
“Do you want me to stay, Noble?” Jonah asked quietly. “I will. I don't care what any of them think. All that matters is what you want.”
A shudder ran through the man and Jonah stroked his cheeks with his thumbs again then pressed his lips to Noble's hair. God, baby, even your hair smells heavenly. Noble's fingertips lightly raked against the front of Jonah's shirt, and he slowly drew the man against him, sliding his arms around Noble's shoulders, holding him tight. Please, baby, just put your arms around me...just hold me. It isn't wrong to love me.
Noble's warm breath puffed against Jonah's throat, his lips lightly grazing the sensitive skin, sending little electric shocks simultaneously to Jonah's heart and much lower. Oh god, Noble, if you don't let me love you soon – they're going to have to lock me up in a padded cell for sure. Jonah ducked his head and brushed his lips over Noble's ear. “Just tell me what you want, baby.” he whispered.
The man's fingertips playing tentatively with the fabric of his shirt was driving Jonah crazy. He struggled to control his breathing – and the rest of himself as well. But after that day out at his place, Jonah had been craving Noble's touch, his affection, like mad. And then to learn that the guy had wanted to go with him back upstate? That was nearly more than he could take – just knowing he'd been so close to having Noble all to himself for two whole days... and possibly forever, if he played his cards right. He'd lost out on that golden opportunity, but he didn't plan on wasting anymore.
Noble raised his head a bit, his lips right there for the kissing, but Jonah resisted when he noticed the sheen in the young man's eyes and pinch in his brow, indicating his internal battles. Jonah ran his fingers through the guy's hair and asked softly, sincerely, “What is really wrong, Noble?”
A glimmer of fear sparked behind his eyes, and his chin trembled, “My dad.” he choked softly.
“What?” Jonah frowned. His dad? A low bubbling rage began to simmer inside him.
“They want...” Noble swallowed hard and ducked his head. “They want my parents here...to be a part of this.” A visible tremor ran through him and Jonah hugged him close again.
“Noble.” he murmured against his hair. “You don't have to do this. No one can make you do it...if it isn't what you want.”
Noble hesitantly wrapped his arms around Jonah's waist, held him loosely for a moment then his arms began to tighten until he was clutching him in desperation and his face shoved against Jonah's neck, unable to hold back his tears. “If I don't...” he choked on a sob. “...they'll make me leave the church.” he squeezed Jonah in his arms and cried, “I won't be welcome in God's house.”
His chest tightening, Jonah's eyes burned with tears. Those fucking hypocrites. He buried his face in Noble's neck and kissed his warm skin as it flushed hotter with his sobs. “You listen to me, Noble.” he said thickly, tightly. “If they're ready to kick you out just because you don't conform to their beliefs, then this is no longer God's house.” He drew back a little and gripped Noble's face. “Because He would never abandon you, or forsake you that way. You will always be welcome in His house. And no one has the right to tell you that you aren't.”
Noble trembled, and he wondered if he might have a nervous breakdown right here in Jonah's arms. His hands were warm on his face, his words like fresh air filling up his lungs, cleansing his heart. Jonah fell silent, his violet eyes holding Noble's gaze so intensely, and yet gently. The man's lips lingered so close to his own. He could smell his breath – tinged with the scent of coffee – and feel it on his face. As he contemplated their recent kiss, wondering how much damage it would do to steal just one more of those kisses – Jonah took his silent cue and closed the tiny space between them, kissing him softly this time. His eyelids fluttered slightly then closed as he moaned and his arms tightened around the man's waist.
“Oh god, Noble...” Jonah shuddered through their kiss, then drew back out of it. His fingers combed through Noble's hair and he kissed him again. “I can't do this here.” he groaned. “I mean, I know God is understanding and all, but I don't want to test Him by making love to you in the bathroom of a church.”
Making love. Just hearing those words on Jonah's lips made him soft in the knees...and hard in other areas. And standing right here, alone with the man...Noble knew he had it in him to surrender to him. It was always so easy...when they were alone. But out there, everything became difficult again. Reality had a way of crashing through this fantasy he got lost in every time he was close to Jonah.
What's really wrong, Noble? They would call his dad, and when he found out...he would come here with a vengeance, ready to call fire and brimstone down on Noble.
“What's wrong?” Jonah murmured, and Noble realized he was trembling. He covered Jonah's wrists with his hands and slowly pulled them away from his head, aching to let them linger
“I...want to.” he shuddered, and choked on a sob. “I want...this.” he squeezed Jonah's hands. “You...but...”
“No.” Jonah whispered and tipped his head, kissing him warmly. “Just stop right there, baby. You don't have to say anymore. You can have me...you can.”
Noble shook his head then pressed his brow to Jonah's shoulder. “I told you.” he choked. “Some lessons...can't be unlearned.”
The man tensed then cupped the back of his head. “Noble,” he said tightly, anger squeezing his words, tears straining his voice, “that wasn't lessons...that was abuse.” he shoved his lips against Noble's hair and whispered, “your father should be in fucking prison.”
He hadn't told Jonah any details about his dad, but he'd seen his back, heard his words, and made his own deductions. “I'm scared of him.” Noble clutched the front of Jonah's shirt and the man held him again, squeezing him in his arms. Never in his life had he felt so safe and protected as he did when Jonah's arms were around him. The man was a real live knight in shining armor.
“I know, baby.” Jonah said softly. “But you don't have to be. I won't let him hurt you ever again. He wants to get to you, he'll have to go through me first.” his arms tightened, as did his voice, “and I guarantee you – he won't get through me.”
You're my hero. Noble wrapped his arms around him. “Why do you...want me?” he whispered.
“What?” Jonah pulled back and looked at him, a shadow of a smile on his lips. “You're not serious.”
Noble nodded. “I'm such a...fucking mess.” he choked. “A fucking coward.” he shook his head, breath catching. “Why can't I stand up to my dad? I'm twenty-three years old, why can't I just...” He ducked his head, tears sliding down his cheeks.
“Hey.” Jonah touched his chin and lifted his face. “You know, all the bullshit we go through as kids...it doesn't just magically disappear when we turn eighteen. That shit gets rooted in, and people need help getting it out. Why do you think so many people out there see a therapist on a regular basis? Because of all the bullshit that can't deal with on their own, that they don't know how to deal with.” he kissed Noble's lips. “Baby, that doesn't mean you're weak, or a coward. You just need someone to help you work through it.”
Noble gazed up at him from beneath wet lashes. “Are you saying...I need to see a shrink?”
Jonah rubbed his thumbs gently over his damp eyes, and smiled. “No, you don't need a shrink.” he brushed his lips against Noble's mouth. “you just need me.”
“Really?” Noble murmured. “You're what I need?” The man visibly tensed – when the faint smile pulled against the corner of Noble's lips.
Jonah relaxed. “Yes. Why?” he nibbled Noble's lower lip. “Am I being a bit too...presumptuous?”
Noble was beginning to relax, he could hear in his voice, feel it in his body – slowly reverting back to that guy who had teased him about the picture in the photo album the other day. Jonah ached to have him back. His stomach tightened though when Noble cast an anxious glance at the bathroom door.
“Well,” Jonah sighed. “I guess we can't stay in here forever.”
Noble nodded slowly, some of his tension seeping back in. As much as Noble clearly wanted to just run out of there with him, Jonah knew he wasn't equipped to make that choice just yet. Not quite there – but oh so close. The man knew where, and with whom, he wanted to be. Now it was just a matter of scaling a few internal hurdles before acting on it. And Jonah knew he had to give him enough space to do so – rather than grab on too tight as he desperately wanted to do. But he wasn't afraid anymore that Noble would regress so far that he might lose him – in any way.
“Jonah...” Noble started then licked his lips anxiously.
“Listen,” Jonah cupped his face. “I'm not expecting you to leave with me today. I know that this is something you have to work up to...that you need to figure out on your own.” he kissed him lightly. “But I'm always right here, just a phone call away.” he smiled and cocked an eyebrow. “Which reminds me...get yourself a new phone as soon as possible, okay? And next time...” he kissed him again. “...ask me what's going on before you smash it...okay, baby?”
Ducking his head, Noble smiled, “Okay.”
Jonah chuckled softly and murmured in his ear, “Gotta love your passion, though.” he kissed his ear. “I'm sorry I hurt you...made you think I'd just left you behind.” he closed his eyes and hugged him tight. “I will never leave you behind, or abandon you, Noble. I promise you that right now.” he sighed and stepped back, looking at the door. “Ready to go back out there?”
“No.” Noble murmured, then smiled.
Sliding a thumb across his cheek, Jonah said quietly, “You'll be okay. Your mind is clearing...even if it doesn't always feel like it.” He rubbed his thumb over Noble's lips. “You know who you are, Noble. Now it's just a matter of embracing it. And you will...I have faith.” he smiled.
Noble glanced towards the door again. “Rebecca's going to...”
“I know.” Jonah nodded.
Meeting his gaze, Noble smiled, a bit sheepishly, “Sometimes I'm scared of her too.”
Jonah laughed and dragged him back into his arms, squeezing him in a hug. “Don't feel bad, baby – she scares all of us from time to time.”
When Rebecca had attempted to go after Noble, Mason had put a stop to it, insisting she just let Jonah have his say and then the man would leave. She hadn't been at all happy about it but had complied nonetheless.
They had gone back to the pastor's office and were waiting to see if Noble would return. Mason suspected if Jonah had any say in the matter, he would be taking Noble with him. Then again, as impetuous as his son was...he knew the man wouldn't push Noble. But would he even have to? Mason hadn't missed the way Noble's eyes had instantly lit up when he'd seen Jonah standing there in the office. Anyone who had bothered to pay attention would have seen how desperately in love the boy was with Jonah. And there was no mistaking the mutual emotions in Jonah as well.
“Dad, this isn't fair.” Rebecca spoke up. “how can you just let this happen? You know Noble is confused right now. And Jonah will just manipulate him.”
Colleen touched Mason's arm. “Maybe she's right, Mason.” she posed. “Noble isn't in the state of mind where he needs to be tempted.”
“I believe we can help him get back on track,” Jack offered, “but it is imperative that he avoid his source of temptation, as much as is possible. Perhaps...someone should retrieve him.”
“Retrieve him?” Mason looked at the man dubiously. “He isn't a dog that's run off. He's a grown man, and if he chooses to listen to what Jonah has to say, then that's his prerogative.”
“I apologize.” Jack said. “I certainly didn't mean to imply any such thing.”
“He didn't choose to go with him.” Rebecca said tightly. “Jonah just...grabbed him, and made him go. I don't see how that was Noble's choice.”
“It's okay.” Noble stepped into the office.
Jonah lingered in the doorway. “I apologize for the...interruption.”
“Noble.” Rebecca went to him and gripped his arm, drawing him deeper into the room, away from Jonah. She glared at her step-brother. “Just go. You've caused enough problem.”
Jonah's lips twitched and a hardly notable tightness squeezed his eyes. “Have I?”
Mason tensed; he knew that look. Come on, son, you've had your say...don't overstep.
“Yes.” Rebecca said stiffly.
Pushing away from the door frame, Jonah smiled dryly, “I don't think I have.” Three strides brought him to Noble. His hands went into the man's hair, gripping his head, and he kissed him.
Not a kiss on the cheek, or a peck on the lips.
But a full blown, all out – staking claim – kiss.
© Copyright 2017 AMS1971. All rights reserved.
Book / Gay and Lesbian
Book / Gay and Lesbian
Book / Gay and Lesbian