flash friday · Short Story · Writing

Friday Flash: Beach Getaway

I was going for a sweet little romance today. It is a little bit longer than I planned on, but hopefully, it is still sweet.

I didn’t use any particular prompt for this. I googled romance, lots of beach photos came up and I thought: why not?

The soft bed felt incredible after a day spent banging my head on a surfboard. Right this moment, I couldn’t imagine why a beach vacation sounded like a good idea.

Josh straddled me, hands rubbing and massaging my back. “Better, love?”

I nodded and looked at him over my shoulder. Cheerful blue eyes and a crooked smile gazed down at me. His bare skin gleamed in the lamplight and I wished I had the energy to do something for him. But I was flat-out exhausted.

Not for the first time, I reflected on how lucky I was to have him.

“Tomorrow,” I said, “I am going to lounge poolside all day long.”

Josh laughed. “The ocean too much for you, huh?”

I scowled. “The ocean is unnatural. All that water. It ought to be divided up into lots of lakes. Pool-sized lakes, with waves the size of my finger.” I held up a finger to demonstrate.

Josh laughed again, used to my grousing and leaned down to kiss me. He tasted of mint and our taco lunch.

In spite of my exhaustion, my cock thickened under me. “Josh -”

“Shh. Let me.” He turned me on my back and nuzzled my throat.

When my stomach growled, we broke apart. Josh grinned. “Dinner. C’mon. My treat.”

I reached for a dry shirt. Josh didn’t; he had no problem going out bare-chested.  Not that I minded. Tall and solid muscle, without being bulky, my mouth watered the first time I laid eyes on him.

The diner overlooked the beach and had a line a mile wide. Sweat trickled down my back. This heat and wet couldn’t be more different from real life. From the icy rooms and tempers crazed enough to kill. From warm, spraying blood – I shook my head. Couldn’t go there.

Josh gripped my hand, eyes understanding and chattered on about tomorrow’s activities. The sound wound around me, like a massage given voice. I blocked out the past month and just focused on Josh.

By the time we reached the hostess, I was calm again. We were seated by a window overlooking the ocean.

“Are you sorry we came?” asked Josh.

I looked up, startled, from the menu. His eyes were uncharacteristically serious. “No. Though I can’t say I am serious about surfing again tomorrow.”

He smiled again. “It will be perfect. You’ll see.”

Silly California boy. Just because he loved the sport and hadn’t been in years, that didn’t mean I should love it, too.

We ordered funny movies from the hotel’s cable and I tried not to think why we didn’t go clubbing. Last time, when we came back, it happened. I couldn’t go anymore.

“Uncle Mason!” Five-year old Ann leaped into my arms. I laughed and swung her around, but she clung to my neck. “Can we go, Uncle Mason? Please?”

“Ann -” The words died in my throat when I looked up. Adam stood in the doorway. Ann’s father. He pointed a gun at me. My sister, Judy, limped behind him.

“Mason, take her. Baby, please. We can-”

A shot roared in my ears and my hands ran with blood. Not my blood. Ann’s.

“Mason!”

I blinked and opened my eyes. Josh leaned over me, face worried. He gripped my shoulders and I realized he was shaking me.

“Same dream?”

I nodded and sat up.

Ann was fine. Judy was in a wheelchair, but Ann was fine and living with my parents. I worked on Ann until the ambulance came. Couldn’t operate on her myself, but I made sure she got the best doctor. All was good now. Why did I have the same dream every damn night?

He hugged me close. “They’re fine, love. Just fine.”

I knew that, but it didn’t really help. I closed my eyes, resting against him. He felt so good, so warm and solid and comforting.

“Make me forget,” I whispered. “Make love to me, Josh.”

Josh studied me and I wondered what he saw. The moonlight wasn’t strong enough to let him see much. He nodded and drew me down beside him.

When my body ached pleasantly, I snuggled against Josh. He’d cleaned us both up and draped an arm over my waist.

The next day dawned bright and hot. The news showed a picture of Adam. He was sentenced to five years in prison. Josh turned off the TV and steered me outside.

Josh owned a board, but mine was rented. The waves today were just like yesterdays. I paddled in, with Josh yelling instructions and encouragement.

I pushed up on the board, dragged my foot under me – and promptly wiped out. I surfaced to see Josh on his feet, riding a wave. He grinned at me and paddled back to me. “Again!”

I’d fallen off a dozen times already, but I nodded and lay down my board. I paddled out like Josh said, popped up. This time, this time, I felt the magic. For the first time, I managed to ride the wave to the end.

“I did it!” I pumped my fist and grinned at Josh. “Josh, I did it!”

“I know, love, I know!” He reached across both our boards and dove into my mouth like he was starving and I had all the meat in the world. “Again!”

The rush was fantastic and I did it over and over. By noon, I was tired. We staggered off the beach, legs trembling like rope in the wind. Like the jump rope Ann loved.

I stopped still, remembering. For the first time in months, fear didn’t suffuse me. She still jumped rope. She was safe. She really was. Adam was in prison and couldn’t hurt them anymore. Why hadn’t I realized it before?

“Mason? Love?” Josh stopped when he realized I wasn’t following. He walked back to me. Again, worry clouded his eyes.

“I am fine. Listen, let’s go clubbing tonight. Would be shame to come all this way and not go at least once.”

Josh stared at me, relief and surprise in his face. “You sure, love?”

“I am sure. You’re right. Everything is fine.”

A slow grin spread across his face. “Of course I’m right. I’m always right. C’mon, love. We got to get you ready.”

 

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31 thoughts on “Friday Flash: Beach Getaway

  1. Ohh, very nice! I love that you went for gay love. Not everyone is bold enough to. 😉

    Just two comments: I found unnecessary the use of the word “cock” at the beginning, and I was confused at the names in the end. Was that on purpose?

    1. Thanks! LOL I think it reflects the sheer amount of mm romance I’ve been reading lately. In fact, I think my next book review will be a gay romance.

      I will admit I was wondering if I should even use it. I mean, the blog is public . . . But all the romances I’ve read (gay & straight) so it, I thought maybe it was okay.

      Um, no, it wasn’t. Guess I will have Josh keep calling him love, like he does for throughout.

  2. I agree that the “cock” is jarring.

    Snicker. Snicker.

    It’s a little vulgar for the more romantic or intimate approach that’s going on. You don’t want to slip into euphemisms or hide what’s happening, but you don’t want to tip too far.

    Snicker. Yeah, yeah.

    Is this your gay fairy tale entry?

    1. Okay, okay, I guess it doesn’t need to be there. Should have gone with my first impulse! LOL

      No, this is practice for the gay fairy tale. That one is going to be much raunchier. Not sweet at all! Flash fiction is great for practice and experiments!

  3. I liked the cock. I felt that it did convey a maturity about the subject…..but….there’s always a but….that word got me ready to read something a little more steamy. I felt let-down a little bit.

    As far as the rest, it was well done. It conveyed a lot of feeling.

  4. . I liked that it was a gay relationship – a nice change, I liked the flash backs and the torment that haunted him though out this piece, it kept me guessing the outcome.

    I too found the cock bit jarring, although it did alert me to the fact it was a gay relationship. I also got confused with the names at the end.

  5. I kind of understand the debate over ‘cock’ but it doesn’t affect me one way or the other. I thought the romance was great, I just wasn’t sure if the back story of the father-killer was worked in quite enough. If he’s only in prison for 5 years, doesn’t seem like Anne is all that safe. I just think that side of the tale need a little more layering to match the layering of the relationship between Mason & Josh

  6. It’s a gay romance and I was surprised I read it through to the end. What kept me going was the underlying story, the inner struggle and the flash back. You’ve stuffed a lot of story in with this one.

  7. Really liked it. This was my first MM romance encounter, glad it was a good one! I liked how human it was, how much you packed into one story, how love and worry and comfort go all together. Very nice!

  8. Nice piece this week, Sonia. I would have liked to have read a few more sentences on him catching that first wave, his excitement, etc. But I love that you went with a happy ending this week.

    As for the cock……
    I’m not opposed to the word “cock” in a flash story, but I agree that it took away from the soft tone of the piece. You could just say something about his erection isntead.

  9. This one was a little outside my normal reading zone! 😉 I didn’t have a problem with “cock,” I vote to leave it in (snicker). I agree with Donald, you put a lot of story into such a short piece and made it not seem rushed.

  10. I like the human struggle in this piece, trying to deal with the past. It’s definitely something we can all relate to. I also like his victory at the end–to move beyond the fear.

  11. I like the fact this has a happy ending and there’s a sweetness to it despite the fact this guy is clearly haunted by a traumatic experience.

    Typo at the end – “Liston” for “Listen”.

  12. You capture a great character arc through the story and skillfully & believably show his change in attitude.

    Loved this bit of dialogue The ocean is unnatural. All that water. It ought to be divided up into lots of lakes. Pool-sized lakes, with waves the size of my finger. for the way it captures the protagonists outlook.

  13. I really enjoyed reading this. The character arc is impressive with so few words. The cock didn’t bother me. (Wow that seems silly to type.) However, if you do remove it, it’s interesting to note that there’s really no way to establish that the narrator is a man until the flashback begins and you find out his name. That may be something you want to use.

  14. I liked this – you were aiming for romance, and got there. Well done. The “cock” early on clarified that we were surfing along with two men, so it worked as a … um… pointer(!)

    The backstory folded in nicely also. You juggled all the elements well and didn’t drop a single one.

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