Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Wednesday's Brief

This week's pr

The holiday season can bring a mixed bag of things both good and bad.  Tom and Ben don't always have it rosy.  Here is a less than rosy situation for the two men.
Holiday Blues

“Ben? Where are you?”  Tom had been working on his car; he was mechanically inclined and had no problem working with machinery. If he hadn’t been a firefighter, he would have been a mechanic. Tom knew one of Ben’s favorite pastimes was watching his ass as he bent under the hood, working on the engine. 

“I’m in here.”

The tone in Ben’s voice didn’t match the happy-go-lucky man he’d left inside their home. Ben had been paying the bills while he was outside. Tom found him in their office reading his email. 

“What’s wrong, honey?” Tom leaned over and kissed Ben’s cheek. They’d just had a great Thanksgiving and an evening of fun with chocolate the other night. Now they looked forward to decorating for the holidays.

“Oh, Tom, I just got a letter from Brandon. You know, my friend from college? He told me Barry passed away.”  Barry Benton and Brandon McKenna were Ben’s friends. They’d known each other since high school.  Barry went to college with Ben and, when they graduated, Barry took a job offer in Texas as a civil engineer.

“What happened, Ben?”  Tom grabbed his office chair and pulled it beside Ben’s desk.  He took Ben’s hand in his and rubbed his thumb over his knuckles to try to comfort him.

“I got word from my friend Brandon that Barry was in an accident in Texas.   He was traveling on the interstate and some fog rolled in.  He ended up hitting a car in front of him that stopped short… another car hit him from behind.  He was taken to the hospital. He died a few hours later.” Ben sobbed after the last words were out of his mouth.

“The last time I saw Barry he was checking into the hotel I was staying at while I was attending a real estate conference in San Francisco.”

“I don’t remember a conference.”

“It was before I met you, about seven years ago. He and I kept in touch over the years, and then I hadn’t heard anything for a while.  I was thinking of contacting him, asking him to come out for the holidays. Now that can ever happen.”

“Aww, baby, I’m sorry.” Tom wrapped his arms around Ben and held him tight.

“He was a good guy, why did this have to happen to him?”

“I don’t know. I’ll never understand why this stuff has to happen.”

They held each other.

“Let’s bring the boxes with the holiday decorations up from the basement.”  Ben switched subjects.  Tom knew it was his way of coping with this tragedy.

“Are you sure you want to do the holiday thing now?”

“Yeah, you know this is one of my favorite times of the year, Tom. Barry and Brandon and the rest of our rag tag group used to love to decorate the dorm and go ice skating.  Then we’d end our evenings with hot cocoa.”

“Hey .Tom?”

“Yeah, Ben?” Tom had deposited the last of the boxes on the floor.

“Do you think we could do that sometime?”

“Do what?” Tom thought it would be nice to start up the gas fireplace.

“Go ice skating.”

“Honey, I’ve never been ice skating.”

“I could teach you.”

Tom felt Ben’s arms wrap around his waist and his chest press up against his back and lean his head on Tom’s shoulder. “I guess that could be fun.”

“We could go to the skating rink tomorrow. You’re not working, right?”

“Uh, no,” Tom said with trepidation.  He wasn’t looking forward to slipping and sliding on the ice, but he’d do anything for Ben.


Tom faced Ben and they kissed.

“Okay, honey, we can go skating.”

“Thanks, Tom. I need this after hearing about Barry. I’ll ask Brandon what’s going to happen with, well, you know, the arrangements.”

“It’s okay, honey, I’ll be with you.”

“Thanks, Tom.”

They set about opening the boxes and decorating their home, inside and out.  The last thing would be the tree. They’d go to a tree farm and pick out and cut down their own tree in about a week or so.   It was part of their family tradition.


  1. ice skating and holiday decorating - romantic

  2. This is so sweet. I love Tom and Ben and they've been through such a lot together. They'll get over this but although death at any time is sad, death so close to Christmas seems sadder somehow.

  3. There's a lot to Ben and Tom's relationship. I like how supportive they are of each other. The holiday theme running through this was cool. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Thanks guys for your kind comments