Emerald City Boys

Chapter 5-Mentors

<Pierce and Drake>
Sleeping in wasn’t an option for Pierce and Drake as Lincoln decided that six-thirty in the morning was a perfect time to exercise his lungs. It didn’t help that Fido decided to add his bark to the noise.
“Fuck, I thought waking us up at one would make him happy enough,” Pierce yawned.
“Oh, that was just his warmup,” Drake informed him. “At least I wasn’t on night duty. It was nice of mom and dad to give me last night and tonight off since I had company.” Drake normally had night feeding duty on Saturday but was told that he would be busy Wednesday and Saturday nights this week because of vacation. “Are you sorry you came?”
“Oh, hell no. I’m beyond happy. I think any girl who thinks having a cute little baby would be so fucking wonderful should have to spend a week on feeding duty. One night has convinced me it’s not my thing, and I didn’t even have to get up and feed the critter. But…”
“But what?”
“I really like the little critter. Holding him yesterday was like holding a precious work of art. And it sounds like one of your parents has stuffed a bottle or a tit in his mouth depending on which one it is. Even the dog is quiet.”
“It was mom’s night, although at this hour in the morning anything goes. And Fido is easy to quiet down—he’s not that much of a barker. Nice words and a pat on the head does the trick, otherwise a doggie treat works.”
“How long will this go on?” Pierce asked.
“Even at six months and older he’ll be eating every four to five hours,” Drake said. “Right now, it’s every three to four—I think we slept through a feeding. I don’t always hear him in my room unless he goes ballistic. It just depends. When I have duty then I turn on the monitor in my room and it will wake me up.”
“Being with you is an education.”
The teens rose from bed, kissed, fondled each other’s semi-hard cocks, showered, dressed in t-shirts and sweats, and came into the kitchen for a feeding of their own. Drake saw his mother in the kitchen and gave her a kiss on the cheek. “Good morning, Mom. What’s good for breakfast?”
Natalie said good morning to the teens. “Do I have two more hungry boys this morning?”
“Yep, so it’s feeding time again.”
“Well, at least the two of you don’t wake the dead when you want to eat.”
“Maybe our voices don’t but I think our growling tummies do the job.”
Breakfast was fried eggs, tater tots, sausage patties, and toast, with plenty of orange juice to drink. The boys ate with Natalie at the kitchen table; Keegan had already left for work.
As they ate, they discussed the schedule for the day. Drake had wanted to show Pierce his high school, thinking that the walk to the school and back would give him a nice tour of the neighborhood. Natalie had other plans, however.
“How about you boys take Lincoln and Fido for a morning walk in the park while I go do some shopping. I’ll drive you both to the high school after lunch so you can show it off to Pierce.”
While it wasn’t what Drake wanted, he knew the schedule would be a big help for his mom. Between his counselor, his ala-teen and AA meetings, and simply living in a real family environment, Drake had gained a great deal of maturity over the past year. He discovered that the world wasn’t just about him, a fact that still disappointed him at times. He understood that slice of life was something he had to live with.
They started out on their walk after the temperature had warmed some. Lincoln was bundled up warm and cozy and Natalie put a doggie sweater on Fido. Drake thought doggie sweaters and jackets were stupid since dogs just happened to have fur to keep them warm. Keegan agreed with him, but they both knew enough to not make an issue out of it.
The park was busy with walkers, joggers, dog walkers, and parents pushing strollers and baby carriages. The temperature was cool, but normal for a mid-April morning. Many walkers and mothers were amused by the teen boys pushing the carriage.
“Oh, is he yours?” one older lady, who was walking with her husband, asked.
“Yes, ma’am. I gave birth just before having my sex change operation,” Drake replied completely straight faced. Pierce had to do everything he could not to bust a gut laughing.
“Sex change operation? Oh my, the world has certainly changed from when you and I were kids hasn’t it, John?”
“Yes, it has, dear,” John answered patiently as he started leading his wife away from the two boys.
Pierce and Drake could hear her perfectly as she and her husband walked away. “I mean, she’s just a child having a baby and then she becomes a he and becomes his father instead of his mother. I just don’t understand it. I am willing to bet the boy with the dog is the baby’s actual father. He knocks up the poor girl and then she becomes a he and he’s not even gay. I imagine he is as confused as we are.”
“I’m sure he is, dear.” Even from where they were standing, Pierce and Drake could tell that John was fighting as hard as Pierce to not break out laughing.
Pierce knew he couldn’t hold his laughter in any longer and buried his head in Drake’s chest and laughed until his belly hurt. “Sex change operation—that was epic. Oh, my gawd, I can’t wait to tell Walker,” Pierce said as he finally gained some control of himself. “How did you keep a straight face through that?”
“I don’t know, I just did. The old man looked like he was ready to let loose.”
“Damn, dude, you need to get involved in your drama club with that kind of acting job.”
As they continued their walk, the boys were momentarily distracted when two handsome blonds came jogging toward them.
“Holy shit, did you see the package on that tall dude?” Drake whispered as the joggers passed.
“Prolly before you did.”
“No way. Damn, he was hot.”
“Let’s walk around the park again and maybe meet them a second time,” Pierce suggested with a leer.
“I think we better be getting Lincoln home.”
“You never want to have any fun.”
“I got the fun you need right here,” Drake smiled as he quickly groped himself. The teens exchanged a quick kiss.
The rest of the walk went without interruption. Drake and Pierce changed jobs as they got about half-way around the small lake in the middle of the park and Pierce pushed Lincoln home. On the walk back, Drake and Pierce agreed not to tell Natalie about what Drake told the old lady, but they would tell Keegan first chance they got.
“Dad will probably tell mom, but by then there’s a little buffer in case she wigs out.”
“I think your mom would be cool about it,” Pierce assured his boyfriend.
“Me too, but why chance it?”
Natalie ended up taking the boys to lunch before driving them to the school. Pierce received a lesson on how to secure a baby seat in the car. Lunch was sandwiches at Milo’s Sandwich Emporium. The tour of the outside of the school was a short one, but Drake was proud to show off the building where he spent most of his weekdays.
When they returned home it was apparent that Lincoln needed changing. Pierce did his first solo diaper change with Drake and Natalie looking on. “Great job, bro,” Drake grinned.
“He’s a natural,” Natalie said, which for some reason reminded Pierce of the old lady in the park and he broke out in laughter. “What did I say that was so funny?”
“Nothin’. You just reminded me of something that happened recently.”
“Is it something you can share?”
“Go ahead and tell her,” Drake told Pierce. “The worst she can do to us is subject us to slow torture.”
Pierce shrugged and told her about the lady in the park. Before he finished, Natalie was in stitches. “Oh, my I can’t wait until your dad hears this story.”
While his mother’s response was not what he expected, it was what he might have expected from Natalie when she was his Aunt Natalie. She was a bit crazy like Keegan back in those days. Maybe I should give her some slack, Drake thought.
Drake had told Pierce in advance that he would have to do an afternoon run to keep in shape for track. “You’re welcome to run with me if you want.”
“I don’t want,” Pierce responded. “Running is not my thing, which is a big reason I like playing baseball. But you go do what you have to do, and I’ll let Lincoln and Fido entertain me.”
Pierce had no compunctions about giving Drake a kiss in front of Natalie as Drake headed out the door. And Drake had no problem accepting it.
After Drake left for his run, Natalie surprised Pierce by saying she wanted to have a serious talk with him. Oh, boy, this is where I get put in my place, Pierce thought. That kiss might have been a huge mistake. But Natalie was full of surprises, and the subject of the talk was one of them.
“Pierce, after knowing you for just one day, I’d like to say that I think Drake has made a good choice for his boyfriend.”
“You do?” Now comes the don’t kiss or make out in front of me and Keegan speech, Pierce thought.
“I do. And I just wanted to tell you that even fifteen-year-old boys can be vulnerable. I imagine there are times you feel the need for a motherly hug or maybe a mother’s outlook on things and don’t have anyone to turn to.
“While I’m not all that experienced as a mother, I have a pretty good idea of how mothers see the world. I might be too far away to give you a hug when you might need one, but I am always a phone call away if you need a different perspective on things. Mind you, I will not do anything to undercut Walker and his decisions. What I am talking about is just getting a different perspective on solving a problem.”
“Just to make sure, there’s no way I want you to say anything against Walker, even when I’m pissed…I mean mad at him.”
“I assure you I have no intention of doing so and if I should ever slip and say something you think is inappropriate, you can feel free to call me on it right then.”
“I will. And thanks, Natalie. I appreciate it.”
“Keegan and I were talking about how the way you show your love to Drake and how you love Lincoln has quickly made you a part of our family. We want for you to always feel that way.”
“That makes me feel really special. And about that hug…”
“Can I have one now?”
Natalie answered by wrapping her arms around the teen and squeezing him into a motherly hug. “How is that?” she asked after letting him go.
“Perfect. Even better than perfect—it was special,” Pierce answered shakily. It was the first motherly hug he had received since before the tragedy that caused him to turn to the streets.
“We all love you here. Drake loves you, Keegan loves you, and I’m sure that Lincoln loves you. And please remember that you will always have my love.”
“And I bet even Fido loves me,” Pierce chuckled as he scratched the top of the pup’s head. “Thanks for all the love—I can’t wait until my next visit here.”  
Keegan arrived home just before four o’clock. He kissed Natalie, gave Drake a hug and was about to fist bump Pierce when he decided giving Drake’s boyfriend a hug seemed like the right thing. His assessment was spot on. He was pleased that Drake still liked getting hugs as long as they weren’t in public and was pleased that Pierce had no problem with hugs.
“I’m going to shower and then we need to have a quick family talk. As Drake’s boyfriend, you’re welcome to sit in on it since you’re kind of a family member.”
“Thanks, Keegan, I’d be happy to give my advice,” Pierce grinned.
Keegan punched Pierce lightly on the shoulder. “Perhaps being a silent participant will be the way to go this time.”
“I’ll try my best.”
When the family got together in the living room, Keegan told them what had transpired during his phone call with Drake’s Uncle Larry that morning.
“Cool,” Drake beamed. “It’s about time.”
“You mean this Aiden kid I keep hearing about is Lincoln’s brother? How did this happen?” Pierce wondered.
“Keegan is Aiden’s biological father. I thought I told you that.”
“I knew you were related to Aiden somehow, but with all the adoptions and stuff I’ve been losing track over who is who on your family tree. So, that means Aiden is your stepbrother by adoption and Aiden is Lincoln’s half-brother—same dad but different moms.”
“Plus, Aiden is also my cousin since his father Phil is Keegan’s brother, which makes Phil Aiden’s stepfather and his uncle, and means…”
“Stop! You’re making my head spin.”
“As long as we’re tacking branches onto the family tree, there is one more person involved here,” Keegan said.
“Yeah, Aiden’s mother who has been discovered to be Eddie’s aunt,” Pierce said.
“Unfortunately, Aiden’s mother was killed in an accident, which was how Aiden ended up being the foster child of my brother Phil and his husband Larry and was later adopted by them.”
“Why didn’t you take him?”
“Long story short, I was declared unfit to have custody because of drug and alcohol problems.”
“And those problems are why you go to AA meetings. It’s starting to make sense.”
“Who is this other person you were going to mention?” Drake asked.
“Natalie knows this—I told her before we got married—but I have a daughter who is either a senior in high school or graduated.”
“You mean I have a sister?”
“You have a sister, as do Aiden and Lincoln,” Keegan responded.
“The plot thickens,” Drake said. “When do I get to meet her?”
“That would be part two of the story. First, she’s legitimate—Natalie is my second wife. Second, I haven’t seen her since my ex kicked me out. I have no idea where she is or even what her last name is. The chances of you meeting her are slim to none.”
“Does Aiden know about this sister?”
“No, and he won’t know until I tell him. His dads know and agree I should be the one to tell him when the time is right. I told them I wanted them to be with Aiden when I tell him.”
“Are you going to tell him this weekend?”
“No. I want this weekend to be all about Aiden and Lincoln. His sister can wait for a later time. Natalie agrees with me.” 
“I thought my life was twisted and complicated,” Pierce said. “But it’s nothing compared to yours, Drake. I mean you have a mom who is also your aunt, a brother who is also your cousin, two blood cousins and two adopted cousins living in the same family, and a mystery sister—damn, you need a family tree guidebook just to keep track.”
Drake, who had been sitting next to Pierce, leaned over and kissed him on the lips. He wanted to comment that maybe Pierce would be added to that book someday but decided that was something to be talked about later.
“Okay, boys, my dear husband and I are ready for dinner. I have formula made up for Lincoln. I fed and diapered him while Keegan was showering so it should be quiet while you have your pizza,” Natalie told the teens.
“We’ll make sure Lincoln behaves and doesn’t tear the house apart,” Drake grinned.
“Wait until you have to babysit after he’s learned to crawl and walk,” Keegan said.
“I can’t wait until I never have to change diapers again.”
Natalie ordered and paid for the boys’ pizza on the phone and then gave each boy a peck on the cheek. “We should be back a little after ten.”
“We’ll be waiting up for you to make sure you make curfew,” Drake smirked.
“That sounds like a good reason for us to come home late,” Keegan chuckled as he and Natalie went out the front door.
“I thought for sure you’d be cooking dinner for me tonight,” Pierce told Drake as they sat together on the sectional.
Drake took hold of Pierce’s hand. “I had one planned but then I decided that since this is your first visit to my house, I wanted all our time focused on each other.”
“You mean cooking me a meal isn’t giving me your time?”
“I suppose you could say it is, but, hey, I was thinking physical time. As in getting naked. Getting on my bed. Fucking. You know the drill. It just means you’ll have Chef Drake’s cooking to look forward to some other time.
“And speaking of some other time if you want to come over on Saturday you can meet Aiden. It can’t be an overnight since we have a bed shortage.”
“Aiden’s gonna sleep with you, I suppose.”
“It won’t be the first time. And after the one time I fucked him, we agreed that we would probably mess around again, but Aiden doesn’t want us to fuck anymore.”
“Did he say why?”
“He said it just doesn’t feel right.”
“Well speaking of you messing around with your brotherly cousin and with your Seattle cousins, maybe we should set some guidelines for having sex with other guys,” Pierce suggested.
“Sounds like a plan to me. And I think we might be talking about some of the same guys.”
“Like Chase, who is hotter than Hades but might be hard to get. And Eddie. Since we’ve become bros rather than boyfriends, Eddie and I still want to have sex with each other.”
“Well, we aren’t married after all. Chase and Dillon have ground rules, and I know Aiden and his boyfriend, Nolan, have rules. It just helps to be on the same page,” Drake said.
Pierce agreed and the two laid down what they thought were common sense sexual ground rules. They kissed long and deep to seal the deal and had to end the kiss when the pizza arrived.
After scarfing their pizza and guzzling their sodas, they got naked, made each other hard, and decided that Drake would be the bottom unless they had seconds; then it would be Pierce’s turn.
Their foreplay was minimal; Pierce desperately wanted to take Drake and penetrated his boyfriend as soon as he said he was ready. After a half-dozen thrusts, the baby monitor crackled and they could hear Lincoln fussing.
“Shit, talk about bad timing,” Pierce moaned.
“I guess this is another example of what parenthood is really about,” Drake said. “We’d better go check on the critter.”
“I can finish up in just a couple of minutes.”
“Baby Lincoln waits for nobody no matter how horny they are.” Drake started out of the bedroom and Pierce followed him.
“Wait, are we going to go into his room like this?” Pierce asked.
“What’s wrong with us? He’s seen me naked before and I’m sure your nudity won’t shock him much. I mean, he’s only two months old. Look, for him it’s eat, sleep, pee, poop, repeat. That’s his entire life—he doesn’t know naked from being dressed up for the prom.”
“But we have boners. Maybe it will work into his subconscious and he’ll grow up suffering from penis envy.”
“You are one crazy dude,” Drake grinned.
“That’s gotta be one reason why you love me.”
“It is.” The noise volume started to crank up and could be heard coming from the nursery. Pierce quickly yanked on his boxers. “Okay, dude, you win this time,” Drake said. “But you better fuck me extra hard once we get the critter settled down.” Drake donned a pair of sweats he had hanging from the back of his desk chair.
Lincoln ended up requiring double duty: feeding and diaper changing. Fido sat attentively next to Lincoln’s crib making sure his human charge was being properly cared for. After Drake took care of the after feeding tasks and got the baby properly settled, he and Pierce returned to Drake’s bedroom.
“Penis envy…fuck,” Drake giggled as he and Pierce quickly stripped naked. “You know you wanted to be wearing something because you were afraid Lincoln would discover you’re not much bigger than him and he’d have his first ever ROTFLHAO.”
“Get your ass on that bed and I’ll show you who should be envying whose penis,” Pierce ordered.
“That’s what I want to hear. Show me what the fuck you’ve got, big boy.”
Pierce left Drake with nothing to complain about as he drilled his fellow teen, almost bouncing him on the bed. Drake’s spontaneous orgasm less than a minute before Pierce filled his ass said all that needed to be said. Drake loved being fucked by his lover.
Round two was almost as successful, although Pierce had to jerk himself off to orgasm after Drake came. “I would have had a no touch cum if I hadn’t given you a great fuck.”
“It’s cool,” Drake grinned. “We made love like we were meant to.”
“Yep. We made love,” Pierce uttered in return. “Just like we were supposed to do.”
The lovers took a quick shower together to wash off the smell of sex. Drake opened his window to air out the room. “We have to watch the temperature in Lincoln’s room,” Drake told Pierce. “It needs to be kept around regular room temperature.”
“Well, it’s not that cold out and it shouldn’t take that long to air the room, so I think we’ll be okay,” Pierce said.
“I’ll check in about fifteen minutes anyway.”
Drake booted up his computer and the teens went to YouTube to see what was cooking there. “Hey, have you heard of this group?” Pierce pointed to the link for At the Majestic.
“I’ve heard some talk about them at school, but I haven’t checked them out. Everybody says they’re pretty good.”
“Pretty good? Dude, they’re awesome.” He grabbed the mouse and clicked on the icon. “They did a live recording a couple of weeks ago—check them out.”
Drake wanted to keep surfing but decided to humor his boyfriend. He was glad he did; except for stopping to check on Lincoln and closing the windows, they heard their program all the way through. “They not only sing great songs, they’re awesome singers,” Drake said. “Not to mention, they’re fucking HOT looking dudes.”
“That Michael kid could share my bed with me anytime,” Pierce grinned.
“He reminds me of my brousin, Aiden.”
“Brousin? I guess that means brother and cousin combo.”
“Good guess.”
“And you’ve had sex with him, right?” Pierce asked. Drake nodded. “And he’s coming this weekend?” Drake nodded again.
When Keegan and Natalie arrived home a few minutes after ten, they found Drake and Pierce sitting on the sectional in their underwear watching a police detective show on television. Drake made a show of looking at the digital time readout on the cable box.
“Three minutes late,” Drake said with mock seriousness. “You two are officially grounded.”
“Sounds great,” Keegan said. “That means the two of you can be responsible for Lincoln all night.”
“On second thought, maybe I’ll let you off with a warning.”
Keegan ruffled Drake’s hair, which would have annoyed Drake except for the fact he rarely had that kind of attention when he was little. He loved it when Keegan touched him; not for sexual reasons but because Keegan’s touch told him he had a father—a real father. The grounding ended just in time as a cry from the nursery sent Natalie off to check on the critter.
“Dad, is it okay if Pierce comes over to meet Aiden and his dads on Saturday?” Keegan asked.
“I don’t have a problem with it, and I’m sure your mom won’t. But no overnight.”
“I’ve told him that. Aiden gets to sleep with me Saturday night.  If he wants to, of course.”
“Sleeping with you has to be better than sleeping in a hotel room with his parents,” Pierce pointed out.
“No doubt about that, bro. No doubt about that.” Drake looked at Keegan. “No offense, dad.”
“None taken, son.”
Pierce and Drake enjoyed a quiet time in bed that night. They were a tired pair of teens, plus their sexual energy had been temporarily reduced by their evening acrobatics. A good night’s sleep beckoned, and they knew in their hearts that they would be enjoying many erotic moments together in the future.
“I got a question for you,” Drake said quietly as they lay face to face.
Pierce kissed his boyfriend. “And the question is.”
“Do you know the difference between a light sleeper and a hard sleeper?”
“Ok, I’ll bite. What is it?”
“Well, a light sleeper sleeps with a light on and a hard sleeper sleeps with....”
Pierce giggled. “...a hard on. You are such a goofball and I love you so much.”
“I love you, too.”
After sharing a last kiss, the boys were asleep in seconds.
“Sorry you can’t spend Saturday night when Aiden comes over,” Drake told Pierce as they waited on the platform for the light rail to arrive. Pierce had to be at the University Station in Seattle by eleven. Walker would pick up him, drive him home, and return to work. Pierce would eat a quick sandwich and put on his baseball practice gear in time to be picked up by John Keene and his mother who would take him to baseball practice. It was going to be a busy day for the fifteen-year-old.
“A three way with Aiden would have been great,” Pierce smirked. “But at least I get to meet him. Maybe next time we can plan something.”
“You may take a look at him and say, nope, too young for me.”
“If he’s as cute and sexy as you say, I bet that thought never hits my mind.”
“He looks younger than he is. But he’s also a very athletic boy and has a nice body for a tween and a great ass for any boy.”
“An ass you’ve sampled,” Pierce said.
“Once, but it was a pretty good ride.”
The train entered the station. The boys exchanged a quick kiss and whispered, “I love you,” as it rolled to a stop. The kiss netted a couple of stares, but no comments that they could hear. Kissing on the station platform was both daring and satisfying. They knew that they would be doing more of the same when they could.
Pierce procured a window seat on the platform side. He and Drake waved to each other as the train pulled out of the station. Drake headed up the escalator and to the bus bay to catch the D bus home. Natalie had offered to drive them to the light rail station, but the boys said they had loaded Orca cards and were fine walking the two blocks to the bus stop and catching the bus.
Drake felt a little depressed when he arrived home. Food always helped when he was depressed, but it was too early to eat. Running helped as well, so he changed to his running garb and took off for a jog in the park.
That evening, Pierce had some father/son time with Walker. He enjoyed helping his father cook dinner. His tasks were precisely laid out and included lessons in proper mixing technique as well as how to track the timing, so everything was finished together. They cooked up a made-from-scratch beef stew. The preparation required the cooks to keep track of a lot of ingredients. The result was delicious; Pierce felt proud of being part of the process.
“Thanks for the lessons,” Pierce said after they sat down to eat.
“If I had known you were so interested in helping with dinner, I would have picked something simpler to prepare,” Walker responded.
“It’s cool. I got to start at the top, so to speak. I mean, you could have chosen tonight to cook steaks.”
“Actually, cooking up steak and baked potatoes would have been much simpler than making stew from scratch.”
“Oh, good, then you can show me how to cook steaks, say, tomorrow,” Pierce grinned.
“Since you don’t have school and don’t have late afternoon practice, that sounds like a good plan. I’ll pick up a couple of New Yorks tomorrow.”
“And thanks for taking the time from work to drive me to the station and back home today. That means a lot to me.”
“Sorry I couldn’t get you to practice today, but even the boss has to work sometimes.”
“It’s cool. John and I are pretty good buds. Not like me and Drake, but I wouldn’t mind an overnight with the dude.”
“What would your boyfriend say to that?” Walker asked, emphasizing the word boyfriend.
“We talked about stuff like that on my visit. As long as we communicate shit we’re both cool with some non-league games, so to speak.”
Walker laughed and said, “You two seem to be getting it together.”
“We’re working at it. But I’ll tell you this, dad, as much as I love little Lincoln, I don’t need a full-time critter in my life. Drake has the best description of Lincoln’s life. Eat, piss, poop, sleep, repeat. Be thankful you never had to change my diapers.”
Walker laughed even harder. He had grown to love being a father. More importantly, he loved his son with every fiber of his being.
“When is Papa Dawg going to be home?” Justin whined to his dad. “I wanna go so I can see Aiden.”
“Just settle down, son,” Mike replied patiently, although his patience was starting to wear thin. “You’ve been asking almost every ten minutes since the Dawg left for work.”
Justin placed his hands on his hips. “I have not. I’ve only been asking when I want to know.”
“Which is just about every ten minutes.”
“I couldn’t sleep last night I was so excited. And now I’m more excited.”
“I can tell. Being tired seems to be your major problem. So, how about us sitting down so I can kick your cranky ass in Uno?”
“Daddy Donkey, you are being silly. There’s no way you are going to beat my ass in Uno, because I’m going to beat yours instead.”
The game managed to calm down Justin for an hour which was long enough to get Justin and Mike to lunch time. Cooking wasn’t Mike’s thing, but he could fry up a decent burger, which is what he did. Justin got the plates, condiments, buns, and potato chips ready just as Mike was ready to drop a burger on the bun sitting on each plate.
Justin concentrated on eating his lunch and satisfied himself with checking the time rather than bothering his dad. He found bothering his dad to be much more entertaining, but he could also tell he had bugged Daddy Donkey enough. Making him mad was not a good idea. The clock read 12:45 when he finished eating. The Dawg was due home at two o’clock and he decided he could wait in his room for the next hour or so. If he got bored, he could always come out and bug his dad.
At one-forty, Mike told Justin that Papa Dawg had texted he was leaving work. The trip took from twenty to forty minutes depending on traffic. Traffic volume tended to be lighter this time of day, so he should make it in twenty minutes. 
At three minutes after two, Justin got worked up again and looked for his dad. He found him coming out of his bedroom carrying an overnight bag. “You mean you just got packed?” Justin asked.
“I didn’t have that much to pack,” Mike told him.
“I had my stuff packed last night.”
“And so did your Papa. I didn’t see any reason to be packed early, but I’m packed to go on time.”
“No you’re not,” Justin insisted. “The only reason you think you’re on time is because Papa Dawg is late.”
“Whoa, by a whole five minutes.”
“Like you keep telling me, late is late.”
“And I also keep telling you that traffic is unpredictable. If he’s got a big traffic problem, he’ll call.”
Justin walked to the window in time to see the Dawg’s car pull up in front of the house. “He’s here! Are we taking his car?”
“That’s the plan. It’s warmed up and ready to go.”
Justin grabbed his Kenneth Bear along with his overnight bag and was out the door and at Ryan’s car before his Papa had a chance to open the door and climb out.
“I thought we were leaving now,” Justin wailed.
“And hello to you, too, Son,” Ryan grinned.
“Oh, hi, Papa and I thought we were leaving now.”
Ryan gave his hyper son a quick hug which the boy relished. “I thought that if I took a piss before we hit the highway we could probably make it all the way to Mayfield without having to stop.”
“And you need to get your bag.”
“It’s already in the trunk.”
That sounded like his dads usually behaved—Papa Dawg had his bag packed and in the car, and Daddy Donkey packed his bag minutes before they were scheduled to leave.
“I assume you’ve taken care of your last-minute peeing business, right?” Ryan asked.
“I was so excited to leave I think I kinda forgot,” Justin replied sheepishly.
“Then let’s go take care of business.”
“Hey, it’s not like you weren’t reminded,” Mike told his son.
“I know but I didn’t think I had to go, but since Papa has to pee, I think maybe I do, too.” Mike had a bladder like a, well, like a donkey and could go for long stretches without needing to urinate.
After Ryan and then Justin took care of business the Boyers were finally ready to go. Mike had texted Ryan to be ready for a non-stop verbal assault from Seattle south because Justin was totally keyed up.
“I want to talk about baseball and Aiden being my big brother,” Justin started as Ryan pulled away from the curb.
“Talk away, the Donkey ears are in prime listening position.”
Justin started talking about the Mariners and Marty. He slipped right into his upcoming first real baseball practice on Monday. “We’re going to have pitchers and everything and since my dads and me have been doing a lot of practice I am going to try out for pitcher and for third base when I can’t pitch.” Mike nodded and smiled and soaked in his young son’s enthusiasm. As they passed through Tacoma, Justin stopped chattering and looked out the window. By the time they reached the top of the Tacoma Dome Hill, Justin had fallen asleep.
Next: Justin and Skip