Piano Forte

Chapter 38-Encore

CHAPTER 38    
<The Master Quartet>
Ned and Gary woke up to Gary’s alarm. Gary gave Ned a kiss and rose from his bed. Gary followed right behind him straight into the toilet stall where the two boys stood next to each other and took care of their morning business.
“That was fun last night,” Gary told his friend. “You’ve gotten pretty good at this sex stuff.”
“That’s because you guys in the Master Quartet have been good teachers and great friends,” Ned said as Gary started the shower.
“Are you showering with me?” Gary asked.
“If that’s what you want, then I’m in.”
“That’s what I want.”
Austin beat his alarm by a couple of minutes and heard the shower running. He needed to piss and climbed over Titus to leave the bed. The movement woke Titus up, of course.
“Good morning, Austin.”
“Morning, Titus. I guess I can shut my alarm off since we’re both awake.” Austin proceeded to do so. “Are you okay about last night?”
“You mean because I lost my virginity?” Titus asked. Austin nodded. “I’m okay with it. I mean, other than the Quartet and William and John, who’s gonna know. It’s not like I’ll be wearing a sign saying ‘I’m not a virgin any longer’.”
“I was thinking about how you felt inside. I mean I just lost mine a few days ago and I had to think if I did the right thing or not.”
“Did you do the right thing?”
“I think I did,” Austin nodded. He stood up and started for the bathroom. He stopped halfway to the closet and looked back at Titus. “That’s wrong. Make it, I KNOW I did the right thing.”
“Even though my butt’s a little sore, I KNOW I did the right think, too.” They heard the shower turn off and went into the bathroom, saying “Good Morning” to Gary and Ned who were busily drying themselves.
“Well, did you do it?” Gary asked Titus. “And you don’t have to answer that if you don’t want to.”
“I want to tell you guys. We are the Master Quartet, and there’s no reason for you not to know. Yes, I did it. Yes, my butt’s a little sore. And yes, I’m glad I did it. And I bet you and Ned did it and Ned was the bottom dude.”
“Yes, to both,” Ned said happily.
“Hurry up and shower so we can eat breakfast together. We all have busy mornings,” Gary said. He and Ned then went into Gary’s room.
When Austin and Titus returned to Austin’s room, they found William putting on his pants. Austin admired his boyfriend’s smooth teen torso. “Hey, guys, I showered with John and as soon as I finish dressing, I’m ready for breakfast. Mind if I join you?”
“I’d be upset if you didn’t join us,” Austin told him. William grinned and pulled his t-shirt over his head. “You’re part of the Master Quartet now whether you like it or not.”
“I like it,” William said.
Before the Master Musicians entered the dining hall, John came up next to Titus and uttered just one word. “Well?” Titus smiled and nodded. John gave the eleven-year-old who was no longer a virgin a thumbs up and walked away.  The Quartet ate at one of the eight-person tables with William, John, and Carlos.
Natasha Havel, the oboist Carlos had become very friendly with, had spent the night with him. Carlos fucked her twice but had been smart enough to wear a condom both times. Carlos had taken the eleven-year-old’s virginity a week earlier and now neither could get enough of each other. Natasha’s twelfth birthday was in two weeks and the tweens were diligently working on a way to get together then. If that didn’t work, and the chances were it probably wouldn’t, they both planned to attend at least part of the youth music festival and had no doubt they would not only get together then but find away to fuck each other’s brains out.
John knew about Titus losing his virginity and he knew that Carlos did not. As far as John was concerned, what Titus and Austin did together the night before was none of Carlos’s business. He liked Carlos but felt that Titus was better off if his roommate remained ignorant. He had told William how he felt and William felt the same way. If anyone were going to tell Carlos what Titus and Austin had done, it would have to be Titus.
<Austin and Dr. Markham>
Austin met with Gene Delacroix in the media room at nine for one of his master classes. “Good morning, Austin. Have you recovered from last night’s excitement?”
Austin blushed deeply until he realized Gene was referring to the music program and not to his night in bed with Titus. He felt silly for thinking otherwise.
“Yes, I’m recovered. William and I are meeting with you after lunch and we’ll have a question then,” Austin finally said.
“Right. We have the media room scheduled for two.”
“And you’re meeting with Gary, what, at three?”
“That is also true,” Gene grinned.
“Being a master class teacher keeps you pretty busy.”
“And I love every second of it. I think am going to find plenty to keep me busy now that I have retired from the concert circuit.”
“So, you’re really never going to play again?” Austin asked.
“Oh, I will do a couple of concerts or recitals during the course of a year plus do a lot of teaching, but I’m not going out on the circuit which would have me playing in many cities back-to-back. I am now setting my own schedule, with my agent’s help of course, and performing when it suits me.”
“I bet people are going to be excited wherever you go to play.”
“Or bored with seeing the same old man again. There are a lot of good, young pianists looking for concert venues and it’s time for me to step aside and give them the opportunity. Now, let’s cut the jabber and do some exercises and then take a look at the ‘Waldstein’ sonata.”
“Can I strip to my undies?” Austin pleaded.
“But of course—or less if it suits you.”
“Undies is good.” Within seconds Austin was wearing nothing but a pair of loosely fitting white briefs and his shoes and socks to help him with his pedal work.
Working in the control booth, Jordan almost creamed his pants as he watched the tween redhead strip. When he heard Gene say he has no problem with Austin stripping naked he grabbed his hard cock through his shorts and squeezed as he sent vibes Austin’s’ way. The vibes had no effect, but the view was still excellent.
Gene spent the hour working patiently with his talented young pupil. Their work focused on the first movement and as Austin worked through it, correcting mistakes, making changes in emphasis, working to fit the parts together, Gene was impressed by the boy’s talent and musical maturity. Perhaps the most impressive thing for Gene was that by the end of the hour, Austin was playing most of by rote instead of from the score. Gene had no doubt that if Fred Byers, the Seattle Youth Symphony director, were sitting in on the lesson his respect for the “dreadful little redhead” would have grown exponentially. 
“Good work, Austin,” Gene said as Austin stood up to dress. Austin saw Jordan inside the booth and gave him a flirtatious wink. “I think you made a great deal of progress, today.”
“Thank you, Grandpa Gene. The notes started to make more sense today and it really helps having you show me the fingering.”
“I’ll meet Dr. Markham in the foyer and show him the conference room.” Austin, Gene, and Dr. Boardman were scheduled to meet in ten minutes to discuss whether Austin would be playing a concerto with the Tacoma Youth Symphony.
“I’ll be right there,” Austin assured his gramps.
Gene left the room and Austin walked up to the control room window with his hand inside the front of his briefs. “Are you going to take them off before you cream?” Jordan asked over the intercom.
Austin yanked the briefs down to his knees and gave Jordan a look at his rising cock. “If I didn’t have my meeting I’d come back and sit with you,” Austin grinned.
“If you didn’t have that meeting, I’d have you come back here so I could suck your delicious little cock,” Jordan smirked.
Austin pulled up his briefs, put on his shorts and t-shirt and gave Jordan a quick good-bye wave. He hoped his raging hardon would be gone by the time he got to the conference room.
It was down to a semi when he arrived. Dr. Don Markham and Gene were laughing about something when Austin walked into the room. He didn’t see Dr. Boardman.
“Thank you for getting here quickly, Austin” Dr. Markham said.  
“I stopped to say something to Jordan, the media tech or I would have been here sooner,” Austin responded. Gene was willing to bet that more went on between the two boys than simply an exchange of words—like maybe a few moments of show-and-tell.
Dr. Boardman entered the room apologizing for his lateness. “One of tonight’s performers was having a bit of a confidence crisis. I believe it’s now taken care of.”
“We were just getting ready to begin,” Don said. As you all know, the purpose of this meeting is to discuss Austin performing with the Tacoma Youth Symphony at the Seattle Youth Music Festival. I have reviewed the videos of last night’s performances as well as Austin’s performances in camp and found myself extremely impressed. You are a fine young musician, young man.”
Austin blushed at the praise from someone so highly placed.
“My assistant has looked over the videos as well and concurs with the decision I made. Austin, I would love for you to perform with the Tacoma Youth Symphony.” It took a great deal of self-control on Austin’s part not to shout out with glee. “You would be playing with the orchestra at our Wednesday afternoon performance and again at our Friday night performance.”
“I am honored to be invited to play with your orchestra, Dr. Markham, and I humbly accept,” Austin said in a formal tone of voice even though he really wanted to scream and shout.
“Have you been coaching the boy, Gene?” Don grinned.
“It’ is my job as his master tutor to not only teach him music but also how to deal with the formalities of the music world,” Gene replied.
Don looked back at Austin. “Your grandfather is looking after your self-interest, but if you had screamed and hollered and danced around the room I would not have been offended.”
“Well, how about, YIPPEE, I’LL DO IT!!!” Austin shouted out.
“Now we’re talking. Have you and your grandfather discussed what you would like to play?”
“No, but I’ve talked about it with William. I told him I wanted to play Mozart.”
“Nice place to start,” Gene said. “Which work did you have in mind?”
“His K415,” Austin replied. He was certain his Grandpa Gene could match it up with the right Concerto of the twenty-seven that Mozart wrote. Austin had total faith he could, but he wanted to see it happen.
“That would be his Concerto 13 in C Major. Many consider it to be Mozart’s first mature concerto.”
“Yep. Do you see how my Gramps knows his music?” Austin asked Dr. Markham and Dr. Boardman.
“Was there ever any doubt,” Dr. Boardman said.
“How did William react to your choice?” Dr. Markham asked.
“He didn’t like it. He said Mozart was a good place to start but not that one. He thought because thirteen was unlucky I should play a different one.”
“Interesting,” Gene chuckled. “I never thought of William as being superstitious.”
“Me either, until he said that. But I said I was going to play it because the Allegro (third movement) makes me want to move around when I listen to it, so it should be fun to play.”
“Have you looked at the piano part for this work?”
“I found it online and played some of the third movement on the air piano.”
“The air piano?” Dr. Boardman asked.
“Yeah. You play it like this.” Austin held his hands up in front of him, his fingers in proper position. “Here’s the Beethoven ‘Moonlight’ on the air piano. His fingers took off, flying though the air in the same way it would have flown across an actual keyboard.”
“Oh, like an air guitar, and an air baton, and…sorry, I should have figured it out,” Dr. Boardman said shaking his head.
“Very well”, Don Stated. “I am meeting with the orchestra next week and we will start rehearsing it. This means your plans will have to change as well. The festival starts Sunday, August third. I will be rehearsing the orchestra with you as soloist on Saturday, Sunday, and Tuesday. Gene said you will be staying with him.”
“It looks like you’ll be my guest starting on Friday instead of Saturday,” Gene told Austin.
“I’ll be there,” Austin vowed.
<Austin and William>
“You know they’re talking about us at their lunch,” William said as he, Austin, and Titus enjoyed lunch in the dining hall. Gary and Ned were in a practice room working on Ned’s transcription of “The Entertainer”. What had been their encore the night before was going to be their featured work that night.
“So?” Austin asked. “I mean Gramps kinda knows us and I just had a meeting with Boardman and Markham. You know Markham is gonna want to know everything Gramps knows about me.”
“Just be happy Dr. Byers isn’t there talking about ‘that dreadful redhead’.” William laughed.
“Did he really say that?” Titus asked.
“He sure did.”
“And you’re still going to play with his orchestra in the festival?”
“Austin said he’s okay with it as long as I only say nice things about him.”
“Just because Dr. B is a butthead doesn’t mean William can’t play with his orchestra. I mean, he’s playing Schumann and not something Dr. Butthead wrote,” Austin explained.
“Plus, Dr. Markham is going to be telling Gramps at lunch how he wants you to play the Mozart—you know, what tempo and everything—so he can teach it right. You know you’re really lucky to have him coaching you through this.”
“He helped your first time, too, right?”
“Some, but he was away a lot on the concert circuit, plus he was still living in New York then. Dad helped some, but most of it was Thaddeus, my piano teacher. He was a good teacher but didn’t have much experience playing concertos. I was lucky I did as well as I did. Dr. Butt…er…Byers yelled a lot, but he always yells a lot. He told me I did a great job.”
After they finished eating lunch, William left Titus and Austin behind and walked to the Administration Building. William was going to work on the Schubert Impromptu he would be playing that night. Austin and Titus sat in the courtyard where Austin told Titus about his getting Jordan excited.
“You guys had boners and everything?” Gary asked.
“Yep. Not much happened but it was fun.”
“Thanks again for helping me last night,” Titus said.
“Hey, it’s what friends are for. I hope that we’ll have a chance to do it again at the festival. And if not, well Gary will be staying at your house and, well, you figure it out.”
Titus sat quietly for almost a minute with a dreamy look on his face. “I’m figuring it out and it gives me a boner,” he giggled.
“I should go to the gym and ride one of the bikes or swim or something. But I know there are some open practice rooms so I’m going to play my ‘Moonlight’ movement a couple of times before I meet with William and Gramps.”
“I love how you call Mr. Delacroix ‘Gramps’,” Titus said. “That’s what I call my Grandpa Scott. He’s my Mom’s dad and an awesome Gramps. My Grandpa Joe lives in Arizona, so I don’t see him much. You said you saw that there were practice rooms open, so I’m going to grab my violin and find one.” Practice rooms were generally available the last few days of camp because many campers no longer had recitals to work on.  
<William and Austin>
William and Austin arrived at the media room early. Since nobody was working there, they went and were stripped down to their underwear when Gene entered. William gave Jordan a wave through the control room window. Jordan grinned and waved back before stripping down to his orange boxers. The plan was for William and Austin to play the “Fandango” a couple of times. Since they had just played it the night before Gene felt all they needed was a quick mental exercise in order to be ready for their recital that evening. The week’s recital winners would be competing for four places in the semi-finals.
“You boys look ready,” Gene grinned. “Are you still good with two times through?”
“Once should be enough,” William replied. Gene detected a sense of overconfidence in his grandson and braced himself for the fall.
Gene was not surprised when the boys’ first time through was stiff and uninspired. Austin and William knew it and didn’t have to be told. The hit all the right notes, but they did little else right. Even Jordan could tell the boys didn’t have their heart in their playing. He immediately deleted the video since there was no way they would want it.
“Well, that sucked royally,” Austin said.
“Sorry,” William said dejectedly. I thought we had this down.
“When it comes to music, you’re either passionately on top of it or it will eat you alive—every time,” Gene said. “I think another time through, with passion, would help everyone’s outlook.”
“I think taking my briefs off would kick some energy into me,” Austin said. Without waiting for permission, he pulled down his black briefs, worked them over his shoes, and tossed them over his shoulder and onto the floor. William shrugged and took off his red, green, and yellow boxer briefs. He wasn’t wearing shoes, so he didn’t have to do battle pulling his underpants over his feet.
“Of course, you two nutcases understand you can’t be playing naked tonight,” Gene grinned.
“Tonight, the audience will give us energy. Right now, our free bodies will give us energy,” William said.
Those free bodies will give the energy and will also give me energy for an orgasm by the time they quit playing, Jordan thought as he started stroking himself.
For William and Austin their naked performing wasn’t about sexual energy, however, it was musical energy, which surrounded their naked bodies and seeped into their souls. “Okay, love, here we go—from the top,” William called out as they went through their program once again. This time they played with gusto and their fingers flew and their minds connected.
“Bravo,” Jordan yelled out over the intercom when the music ended. He had already wiped the cum from his belly and groin and pulled on his shorts and t-shirt.
“Well done,” Gene seconded. “This time you took care of the music instead of it taking care of you.”
“If the audience connects with us tonight, we’ll be good,” Austin said. “So, let’s make sure we play to them.”
William looked at Gene, anticipating his upcoming question. “We don’t need another run-through, gramps.”
“I didn’t think so,” Gene nodded. He then took a scorebook out of his satchel. The front read: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Piano Concert 13 in C Major. K415/387b. “Courtesy of Dr. Markham. I thought we would start on your upcoming performance, how you’re going to practice for it, how you’re going to play it, how you’re going to think it, how I’m going to teach it—we have less than a month to do it. William has agreed to be a part of it, at least for as much as his schedule allows. And Josh is going to start to work with you as soon as you get home from camp.” Gene was referring to Austin’s piano teacher, Josh Fielding.
“I forgot we don’t have much time. Plus, I live, like, close to 100 miles away,” Austin said.
“Nothing to worry about. We’re going to make it all work out. I even know the way to Bellingham from Seattle. We’ll start today by looking at how to look at the scorebook and see how the notes of the piano mesh with the notes of the orchestra.” And thus started what was going be the biggest adventure of Austin’s young musical life.
<Gary and Ned>
When Gary and Ned finished their playing the changes they made in their rendition of Scott Joplin’s “The Entertainer” Gene applauded their efforts. “I love how you smoothed out your impromptu performance from last night but still kept your interpretation sounding fresh,” he said.
Cindy Dykstra, the woodwind coach for the camp concurred. “When I heard those two playing their impromptu encore last night I was overcome with emotion. That two twelve-year-olds could come up with the transcription was one thing—Gary and Ned came to me with Ned’s transcription for flute—but then to perform impromptu as a duet was another thing altogether. And what they just played for us takes it to another level. Excellent work, boys.”
“Thank you, Cindy,” Gary said. “Just so you know, I’m twelve. Ned, the composer is still eleven. That makes him the genius.”
“Hey, I’ll be twelve in a couple of weeks, so I’m as good as twelve now,” Ned pointed out.
“I’m looking forward to this being your showcase work tonight,” Cindy said.
“From encore to showcase overnight,” Gene said. “Now that’s action.”
Cindy rose from her seat. “I’ll see you all tonight,” she said as she left the room.
“Before you boys go, I want to discuss something with Ned. You’re welcome to stay and listen in, Gary.”
“Is this about tonight?” Ned asked
“Nope, this is about the Seattle Youth Music Festival and whether or not you want to attend it.”
“I already know I can’t. My parents have said…”
“Ned, how about you stop and listen for a bit. What I said was, it is up to you. I’ve talked to your parents, and they like the plan, so that decision has been made.”
“You’ve talked to them? And I didn’t even know…”
“Sorry,” Ned said contritely.
“Should you decide to accept this offer, you will be staying in the home of Jonas Billings, who plays flute in the Seattle Symphony. His wife, Glenda, is a high school music teacher in the Edmonds School District. Plus, they have a son your age—Dominic, who is twelve. He happens to be a string player, but his parents forgive him.”
“You did all this for me?”
“You did this for you by being an incredible young man and a dedicated musician. I just helped things along some,” Gene said.
“How will I get down here? I guess my parents will drive me down.”
“You turn twelve just in time to take the train as an unaccompanied minor. And I have talked to my attorney about the legalities of you crossing the border and living here for a week away from your parents. He said his law firm will take care of everything that is needed to make it happen.”
“What about my sister? Is she coming, too?”
“Do you want her to?”
“No, but she is my sister and, you know, things should be fair whether I like her or not.”
“And that right there is why I consider you to be an incredible young man who earned his way to the festival. However, your sister does not want to come because she misses her friends and wants to enjoy the rest of her summer at home.”
“Okay, but at least you asked so she can’t get mad at me because I get favoritism.”
Gene laughed internally when he realized there was more to Ned wanting his sister to be asked than simple altruism. The girl did have her younger brother a bit intimidated.
“Wow, Gary is going, Titus is going, Austin is going, so I guess that makes my answer yes, I want to go. Now the whole Master Quartet will be there.”
“I figured as much. My attorney and I will be working with your parents. I will also stay in contact with you to make sure you get all the details straight.”
“Toss in William, and we have all of the Master Musicians going,” Gary pointed out.
“This is going to be so much fun, eh?” Ned stood up, walked over to Gene, and gave him a loving hug. “Now I know why Austin and William love you so much.”
Gary and Ned left the room chattering away. Gene felt a great sense of accomplishment as he watched them leave. He couldn’t remember the last time he had felt a greater sense of accomplishment than he received working with the five members of the Master Musicians at camp.
<Wednesday Night Music>
After the excitement of Tuesday night’s performances, Wednesday night’s music competition felt anti-climactic when it began. Ned and Gary were third on the program and when they stepped on stage the atmosphere changed. The campers, staff, and others in the audience wondered if the duo would be able to top their encore of the night before.
They were able to do that and then some. Their impromptu performance of Tuesday night had everyone, including the performers, wondering what would happen next. This time, with the rough edges smoothed out, Ned and Gary exhibited a confidence in their musical abilities that filled the auditorium. The audience was enthralled by how the two had taken their impromptu performance and smoothed it out while still maintaining a freshness to their music. It was at once a youthful and mature performance.
There was one thing the Master Musicians had talked about the night before and throughout the day and that was playing an encore if the audience reception was long and enthusiastic as it had been the night before.
“What are they going to do grab a hook and yank us off the stage like in those old movies?” Gary asked.
“Maybe they’ll open a trap door in the stage and we’ll be dropped into a dungeon,” Austin said to the laughter of his friends.
“I’ve heard rumors that there are man-eating crocodiles living under the stage,” William said.
“Not a problem,” Ned said. “Since we’re all boys and not men, we’re safe, eh”
Austin contradicted him. “Maybe not William—he keep’s telling me he’s a man now.”
“The croc would probably spit him out because he would taste all sour,” Gary giggled.
“Hey, dude, you’ve had some tastes of what I shoot out—was it that bad?” William asked.
“Not to me, but who knows what a crocodile would like.”
The result of the chatter and some of their practicing during the day was the boys preparing encores to play should they feel needed. With the roar they received from the audience Ned and Gary felt an encore was needed and they played a short transcription for flute and piano by Telemann they had found in the school library. Mr. Shepherd glared at the boys when they came off stage but said nothing about their transgression.
William and Austin played their “Fandango” duet as well as if they had been playing naked; maybe better since they probably would have been self-conscious playing naked in front of an audience. The popular pair received another big ovation. When they settled in for an encore, Dr. Boardman had to restrain Shepherd from running out on the stage. Their encore was “Imagine” by John Lennon and the audience went nuts yet again.
William and Austin each had a solo to play. William played the Schubert Impromptu he had performed earlier in the week and Austin played the third movement from Beethoven’s “Moonlight” Sonata. Both were met with enthusiastic applause. William’s encore was the 2nd Gymnopedie by Erik Satie and Austin played a piece by Peter Maxwell Davies titled “Farewell to Stromness.”
When all of the performers had finished, Mr. Shepherd announced who would be moving on to the finals.  Gary and Ned with their duet of “The Entertainer,” William with his Schubert Prelude, and William and Austin with “Fandango”.
Austin already knew his “Moonlight” was not going to be a semi-finalist. He was more interested in playing the Granados work and had told Dr. Boardman that if he finished in the top four he would decline to move on. Dr. Boardman thanked Austin for his unselfishness and said he picked the right work to emphasize.  He said the voters would be informed of Austin’s withdrawal of that work.
More cheers came from the audience when Mr. Shepherd announced that Shannon Walsh, Gary and Ned, Austin and William, and William as soloist would go on to the semi-final competition. Titus and Austin had qualified earlier, so all five of the Master Musicians had at least one work in the semis.
Mr. Shepherd and Dr. Boardman then told the Master Musicians that they were to report backstage after they had mingled with their friends and/or parents in the auditorium. The five boys had no doubt as to what the topic of discussion would be.
Gene was particularly pleased as to how his two pupils, Gary and Austin, had performed. He also made sure to praise William and Austin for recovering from their malaise of early in the day to perform the “Fandango” as well or better than the night before.
“The program for the finals won’t be posted until tomorrow morning,” Gene reminded the boys. “Either way, we’ll do a run-through tomorrow and let the chips fall where they may on Friday.”
“Sounds good, Gramps,” William said. “We’ll see you then.”
Gene also had master lessons scheduled with Austin, Gary, and William during each of the last two days of camp. The boys would be busy right down to the last day of camp and it was his intention to have them getting to work for the festival right after the camp ended.
The five members of the Master Musicians returned backstage to face whatever Mr. Shepherd and Dr. Boardman planned to throw at them.    
Mr. Shepherd pointed to the seats that were set up for the musicians awaiting their turn to go onstage. “Have a seat boys.” Five young asses plopped down simultaneously.
“There is no need for you stay, Titus. You were not part of the rebellion,” Dr. Boardman said.
“The Master Musicians play together and hang together,” Titus replied boldly. The other four boys looked at other, their faces saying, where did THAT come from?
“Very well. You boys know there is a policy against playing encores. That policy is there for a number of reasons. One is because of time constraints. Another, more important reason, is to make sure there is an even playing field, so to speak, for everyone performing. As much as these recitals are for education and entertainment, they are also about competition.”
“We did it yesterday, too,” Gary reminded Dr. Boardman.
“As you were told, the encore was tolerated last night because it was a spur of the moment happening that led some remarkable music,” Mr. Shepherd said. “Tonight’s encores were premeditated. Or, as Dr. Boardman called them, they were acts of rebellion.”
 “No rebellion was intended, Sir,” William responded. “We were merely following through on what had worked yesterday.”
Even though William’s overall deportment in camp had been far better than what he had shown in school over the past couple of years, Mr. Shepherd didn’t trust him. He felt William had just fed them a line of bullshit. Dr. Boardman, on the other hand, had seen a miraculous turnaround in the young teen and was willing to take him at his word. His position as an instructor put him in much closer contact with the campers than Shepherd’s position as an administrator did.
“I think what we had here was a group of creative and excitable young men becoming maybe a bit too creative and excited,” Boardman stated. “I believe all five of you would agree that you should have revealed your plans to us before the program started.”
The boys all nodded in agreement. They were exactly what Boardman had described—creative and excitable. Boardman also knew they were good kids. “I don’t believe for a minute that any of you were rebellious tonight. Compulsive—yes. A bit irresponsible—yes. But rebellious, I simply don’t think so.”
While Max Shepherd could be an officious administrator at times, he was also an open-minded man at other times. He could see that Dr. Boardman had diffused a difficult situation and decided to let the instructor bring the incident to a close.
“How about we come up with a little compromise,” Dr. Boardman said. “We have all seen what the encores can add to your program, but we also have to understand why they can’t be a part of these recitals.”
“But…,” William started. He stopped when he saw Boardman hold up his hand.
“What do you think of starting a new tradition?” Boardman asked. He could see that he had the boys’ rapt attention and went on. “I think that allowing encores on the night of the finals could be a great addition to the program. After all, there will only be eight performances. Everyone performing is one of the top musicians in the camp and probably has something in his or her repertoire for an encore. We will emphasize that an encore is not expected of any performer and is for the entertainment of the audience.”
“So, we’re going to be like, pioneers on Saturday, right?” Gary grinned.
“That’s the idea.” Dr. Boardman turned to the camp administrator. “What do you think, Mr. Shepherd.”
On the surface Max Shepherd didn’t like the idea. But, deep down he could see the benefit. It added something extra for the audience and gave the campers an extra challenge for the finals. The finals always filled the auditorium. Parents and guests of the campers would receive a voucher for free admission. Everyone else would pay. The money the camp made from the ticket sales would go towards camperships for next year’s camp. He went with his deep-down feelings and said, “I think it’s well worth a try.”
The boys cheered and were dismissed with an admonishment from Shepherd and Boardman not to even think about an encore until the finals no matter how many in the audience screamed for one. “We will let everyone know about the change in the encore rules before tomorrow’s performances start,” Dr. Boardman said. “Hopefully, that will help alleviate any issues.”
“It appears you gentlemen survived the rack and thumbscrews,” Gene observed as the boys returned from backstage.
“Yeah, but the waterboarding was pretty rough,” William said.
“Make sure you let me know your performance schedule as soon as you know it,” William’s father said.
“It’s supposed to be posted by nine tomorrow morning, so we have time to prepare. You’ll see it by ten at the latest, Dad.”
David Delacroix thanked his son and took off to catch his ferry. Gene told the boys he had a quick announcement to make before they left for snack time.
“Anybody have a workshop or rehearsal at ten tomorrow?” he asked them. Ned said he had his last composition workshop. Austin said he would be getting together with Christian and Barry to rehearse their Mozart trio. “Eleven?” Austin told Gene it was his time to set playing the flute back a thousand years.
“They didn’t even have flutes a thousand years ago,” Ned pointed out.
“I know. That tells you how bad I am.”
“I heard you on Monday and you sounded okay for a rookie.”
“I haven’t touched that flute since Monday.”
“Maybe this is a time when not practicing is a good thing,” Ned giggled.
As amusing as the chatter between the two boys was, Gene knew he needed to regain control of the conversation. “What if I treated the fabulous Master Quartet Plus One to lunch at Alfred’s at noon.”
“Sold!” William said. The other four boys nodded and it was a done deal.
“Either Dr. Boardman or Ms Zimmer will lunch with us since we’ll need two cars to get us down to the restaurant.”
“That’s cool,” Austin said. “What are we going to be talking about?”
“That will be revealed tomorrow.”
“Oh, and in case you haven’t heard, we are now the Master Musicians,” Gary told Gene.
“I will keep that in mind. Now go and enjoy your snacks. I’ll be seeing some of you before lunch tomorrow for lessons and all of you in the front courtyard at noon. And if anyone has a workshop at one, just plan on being a few minutes late.”
“I have a class with you,” Austin said.
“Ah, yes, so you do. I hope you have a good excuse for being late.”
“I have all night to think one up,” Austin told Gene as he followed his friends out of the auditorium.
The Master Musicians munched on their evening snacks. They were joined by John and Christian. “I’m sorry I never got us together for a rehearsal,” Christian told Austin.
“Barry and I let things ride, too. The trio is all of us together,” Austin responded.
“Let’s try to get three run-throughs tomorrow.”
“Naked, I hope,” Austin grinned.
“Well, maybe we should just concentrate on the music.”
“Practicing naked, yesterday, helped Austin and me get to the semis,” William interjected.
“You two probably did a lot more than practice naked.”
“When we practice naked William and I think of nothing but the music,” Austin said. “Being naked makes us free to play. It’s way different than being naked in our room.”
“We’ll let you imagine what that’s like,” William added to a round a laughter.
“Okay, naked it is. Are we going to have an encore, since they seem to be the thing to do now?” Christian asked.
“The morning announcements will have something about encores, so make sure you read what it says.”
“I guess you guys got your asses chewed by Boardman and Shepherd, huh?”
“I think we kinda won,” Gary said.
“How did you win if they killed the encores?”
“Simple. They didn’t kick us out of the competition, plus, encores will be okay in the finals,” William explained.
“No shit?” Christian grinned. “Then I guess we’d better have one ready for Saturday.”
“And a great naked rehearsal will make sure we’ll be good enough to move on to Saturday,” Austin grinned.
After finishing their snacks the MM’s discussed who would be sleeping where. Austin and William agreed they wanted a night together.
John said he would be happy to spend a final night with his roommate. Ned said he was fine with it as long as John agreed it would be their last night together. “I want to spend the last two nights with my MM friends. Also, you have to agree not to go up my butt with that big thing of yours.”
“Agreed,” John responded. “But what about my big thing ending up in your mouth?”
“Since my sister bitch thinks that’s what we do anyway, I shouldn’t disappoint her, eh?”
“Sounds good.” John and Ned left for what they were certain would be their last night as roommates. 
“I guess that leaves you and me, Gary,” Titus said.
“Since I’m going to be staying with you and your family for the festival, we might as well get warmed up for it,” Gary smirked.
“Yes, you can stick your cock up my butt.”
“For real? You must have really liked it when Austin did it.”
“It was okay. Austin said I have to do it more to get used to it.”
“That will be part of our warmup then.”
“You know what the Master Musicians need for the festival?” William asked.
“A sixth member to make it even?” Gary asked.
“Your thinking is right on. But not just anybody. It has to be a musician and a person who is really special. Anybody who acts like that William dude did before he met somebody REALLY special is out. He has to fit in from the start.”
“Well, that leaves Shannon out,” Ned giggled.
“Good. I’m glad William laid out the rules or it might have been a close call,” Austin said.
“Well, the sister witch bitch has one other thing against her.”
“You mean her being a girl?” Gary asked.
“That would be exactly right.”
The Master Musicians’ plans for the night almost unfolded as planned.
Gary did his best to get Titus used to being a bottom by fucking him twice. But Titus also got his chance to be a top in between Gary’s two forays into Titus’s ass. They slept together so snuggly there was little doubt in their minds that Gary would be sleeping in Titus’s bed rather than in the guest room.
Austin and William made love once before falling asleep together. Austin was the top and he did his best to put love making over fucking. But, being twelve, he got overexcited a couple of times. When it happened, William patiently slowed him down. When Austin finally shot his boy cum into William’s teen ass, William shot his wad over his chest and belly just moments after.
“I know my cock didn’t tickle your sweet place like John’s did,” Austin said as the boyfriends calmed down.
“It didn’t need to because your cock and all of you did something John couldn’t do,” William responded.
“It filled me with your love.”
That led to an almost five-minute kiss until the boys finally broke apart to take a piss before falling asleep.
The only change of plans happened with Ned and John. John did what Ned had asked and didn’t bring up anal sex. It was Ned who brought it up after sucking on John’s cock for a couple of minutes.
“How close are you?” Ned asked his roommate.
“Getting close, but I probably need a couple of minutes of your Canuck mouth at work,” John responded.
“You can fuck me instead if you want.”
“I thought you said…,”
“I know what I said. Just do it slow and easy.” Ned didn’t know why he agreed to let his fourteen-year-old roommate fuck him. He thought that maybe it was curiosity. Whatever the reason was, John was gay and experienced, and he would be able to learn how much he could take from the older boy.
Ned learned he could take John with minimal discomfort as John took things slow and easy. John pulled out before cumming and jerked off over Ned’s chest and belly and Ned followed with a seriously intense dry cum.
The roommates slept in Ned’s bed for the last time.
Next: The Young Master Musicians.