Not in that way


Dominic sat on the edge of his bed, the sheets rumpled and strewn about in a disorderly fashion. He held the picture frame tightly in his hands, as if he were refusing to let go, of both the picture and the memory. The picture was of himself and Billy, the week before. In their mood of infinite silliness, Dominic had suggested to Billy that they go sit on Santa's lap while doing some Christmas shopping in a California Mall. Needless to say, the mall Santa had appeared rather shocked and uncomfortable as the two men had sat on either of his knees, but the memory in itself was hilarious.

"Aren't you two a little old for this?" the mall Santa had asked.

"Oh, of course not!" Billy had replied, wrapping his arms around the mall Santa's neck. "You're never too old for Santa Claus!"

Dominic had chuckled as the mall Santa let out a big sigh and rolled his eyes. "And what is it that you want for Christmas?" he asked him.

"Who, me?" Dominic asked innocently. He tapped his chin and pretended that he was thinking. "Let me see . ooh! I've got it! What I want is ." He leaned into Santa and whispered in his ear, glancing at Billy and chuckling. The mall Santa appeared mildly disturbed.

"Um, naughty boys aren't supposed to get things," the mall Santa said, looking at Billy.

Billy turned a bright shade of red as Dominic winked at them and the mall Santa fidgeted.

"Would you two like your picture taken with Santa?" the unenthusiastic teenage mall Elf asked.

And so the moment was forever captured in time. Dominic sighed, tracing his fingers over Billy's image before setting it back on the bedside table. He got up off his bed and slowly made his way into the kitchen, fixing himself a cup of tea, all the while thoughts of the previous week drifted through his mind.

* * *

It was hard to tell where one of them ended and the other began. He was pinned beneath the weight of Dominic's body, and Billy's legs, one of which was sticking out from under the sheets, moved over the bed as he writhed in ecstasy. Dominic let out a gasp in his state of rapture, his lips making and leaving their mark on Billy's neck. The older man's hands had different quests; one to tightly grip and pull on the sheets, the other to trail down his lover's back then gently massage the curve of his bum.

"Oh," Billy half whimpered, half gasped, his head tipped back and his neck becoming more exposed.

Dominic let out a string of incoherent and meaningless babble as his body went rigid, and he came inside of his lover. Billy trembled, his nails digging into Dominic's back as his own release took over, sending all of his senses reeling. Dominic laid there on top of Billy for a long while, simply breathing and giving Billy's mouth light kisses before disengaging himself and collapsing next to him.

"Would it be too cliché if I asked if it was good for you?" Dominic asked, idly tracing imaginary patterns on Billy's chest.

He chuckled. "Would it be too cliché if I lit up a cigarette?"

Dominic furrowed his brow. "You don't smoke."

"I was just asking."

They both smiled weakly and warmly at each other before Billy closed his eyes, making soft noises that were hints to the fact that he was sleeping. Dominic watched him for a short while, observing the rise and fall of Billy's chest as he breathed. He then got up and slipped on a robe which had been discarded on the floor and made his way to the bathroom. He filled the sink with cold water and then stuck his head in it. He wasn't completely sure if he was doing this to get over the initial shock of sleeping with Billy, or a suicide attempt. Maybe it was a bit of both. Once he had resurfaced, Dominic took a deep breath, then let the water out of the sink and dried his face off. Going to sit in the empty tub, he wrapped his arms around himself and cursed his cold heart.

Billy loved him, and he loved Billy. That wouldn't and shouldn't be a problem if it were the same kind of love. Billy loved Dominic in a fashion that screamed homosexuality, whereas Dominic loved Billy in a fashion that wanted to go to the pubs. The problem was that Dominic had never told him. He remembered in New Zealand, how one night of deep, emotional self discovery between the two had lead Billy to say, "Dominic, I'm not straight." That wouldn't have been a problem for Dominic, but Billy had to add, "I have feelings for you. Very strong feelings." The last thing Dominic ever wanted to do was hurt Billy. So he had said, "Me too." And it began there.

The charade had gone on for a year. Billy had been on top of the world, Dominic felt that he was too inhuman to belong in it. He really and truly loved Billy, but not in the way that Billy loved him. Dominic was not bisexual, or gay, he was straight. He was a straight man that played with his best friend's mind and heart. Their relationship had gone nothing past kissing, simply because there was no time. But now there was, and Dominic had continued to go along with it.

He went along with it as they sat on the couch. He went along with it as Billy's hand began to move up his thigh. He went along with it as the kissing began and the pants seemed to get tighter. He went along with it as they lay in bed making each other writhe and moan in pleasure. Dominic began to rock back and forth in the tub, trying to keep the sob that was rising up in his throat down. He loved Billy; he really did, just not in that way. But he had gone this far, what was he supposed to do?

The next morning, Billy was up with the sun, and surprised to find Dominic already up, making breakfast and tea.

"Couldn't sleep?" he asked sleepily, walking over to Dominic and wrapping his arms around him.

Dominic simply shook his head. Billy pressed his lips to Dominic's neck, making small, happy noises as he marked the other man's flesh. But as Billy's fingers began to work the sash of Dominic's robe, his wrist was grabbed. Billy looked up at Dominic, his face etched in confusion.

"Billy, go sit down."

"What for?" Billy asked.

"Don't ask, just do it. Please."

Billy sighed and frowned, walking into the living room and sitting down on the couch. Dominic turned off the stove and walked into the living room, thinking about how breathtaking Billy looked. The tousled hair, the sleepy face, and the wrinkled pyjama bottoms - they really looked rather becoming on him. Dominic shook his head and sat next to Billy, taking his hand. The older man smiled slightly, looking up, but frowned once he saw Dominic's face.

"There's something wrong, isn't there?" he asked, his voice soft.

"Yeah," Dominic replied. "There is."

"Is this about last night?"

Sigh. "It's about the last year."

Billy's brow furrowed. "I'm afraid I don't understand."

Then came the three hardest words that Dominic ever had to say. "I'm not gay."

"You're . what?"

"I've been lying to you this whole year. I'm not gay, Billy. I never was. It's just that . that night where you told me that you had feelings for you, I didn't want to hurt you. I do love you, just not in the way you love me."

"B - but you have to!" Billy said. "We made love last night! You were - no straight man would ever do any of that!"

"I did, Billy," Dominic said. "And I'm sorry. I really am."

"How could you do this to me?" Billy whimpered, getting up off the couch.

"I poured my heart out to you and you play me for a fool! For a whole fucking year!"

"I didn't want to hurt you!" Dominic said, his voice pleading.

"But you did!" Billy practically screamed. "I fell for you long ago, Dominic! But this whole relationship has been . has been a lie?"

"Billy, please," Dominic began, "I meant no harm, I just - "

"Get out."

"Billy, I - "

"Get. Out."

They just stared each other down, both in shock. Dominic slowly rose from the couch, watching Billy's face, contorted in complete anguish, despair and hatred. He went to the bedroom and quickly changed, coming back out into the living room to find Billy sitting on the couch, blankly staring off, angry tears leaking from his eyes.

"Billy - "


Wanting to say more, but not bothering, Dominic slowly shuffled to the door and opened it. He looked back at Billy, who had still yet to move, and then closed the door behind him.

* * *

Sipping his tea, Dominic paced his kitchen in deep thought. He had been in deep thought for a week, going through his own self discovery. He had thought about what Billy said, how a straight man wouldn't do the things that he had done. He thought about everything that had happened in the past year and how that even though he was doing it just so that he wouldn't hurt Billy, most of the time he was enjoying himself.

Dominic finished his tea and set the empty cup in the sink. He glanced out the window and wondered if he was gay, and telling himself constantly that he wasn't was just a way of justifying what he was doing, but even that didn't make any sense.

It was with that thought that Dominic retreated back to his room and got dressed, grabbing his keys and heading out the door.

* * *

It had begun raining as soon as Dominic had pulled out of his driveway, and he wasn't sure if he should take that as an omen, or stop thinking philosophical crap and admit that it was just rain. Half an hour later, he arrived on Billy's doorstep. He would've arrived there sooner, but his car had stalled, and after much trying he simply gave up and ran the rest of the way. Now muddy, tired and soaked to the bone, Dominic knocked lightly on Billy's door.

When Billy opened the door, his face was cheerful, but it soon fell when he saw Dominic. "I told you that I didn't - "

Billy was not given time to finish his sentence, as Dominic grabbed him by the shoulders and gave him a kiss. Struggling in the younger man's arms, Billy finally managed to wriggle away, letting out a sigh as he looked down at his own now wet and muddy clothes. He looked at Dominic, looking drenched and pathetic and sighed.

"Come on in. You'll catch your death out there."

Billy grabbed Dominic's arm and dragged him into the house, closing the door and then undressing him. Fingers brushed against bare, wet skin, but neither of them flinched or said a word. Billy went to the bathroom, wet clothes in hand and came back with a towel and a robe, the same one Dominic had worn the week before. Without a word, Billy went into the kitchen and put water in the kettle, plugging it in and then searching the cupboards for some mugs.

"Are we going to talk?" Dominic asked.

"There's nothing to say," Billy replied, his back turned. "You lead me on for a whole god damn year."

"But I really didn't."

Billy turned around, furrowing his brow. "What are you talking about?"

Slowly, Dominic walked over to him and leaned against the counter. "I really do have feelings for you, Billy. The way that you have feelings for me. You were right when you said a straight man would never do any of the things that I did."

"It still doesn't make any sense," Billy said, fidgeting with the tea cup and looking down at the floor.

"Does it really have to?" Dominic asked. He received no reply. "I love you, Billy."

Billy looked up at Dominic slowly, his eyes searching the young man's face. He then set the mug down, wrapping his arms around Dominic's waist and kissing him properly. The tea and the wet clothes were soon forgotten.