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Heart of Us: Us #4 by A.M. Arthur (1)

Chapter One

“This is Adam Swift signing off with a quote from an old favorite of mine. ‘In case I don’t see you, good afternoon, good evening and good night.” Rick Fowler flashed his trademark shit-eating grin at the camera one last time.

“And cut,” Charles Greenwood said. “Well done. Heartfelt and real.”

“It’s all true, every word.” Rick stood from the sofa where he’d sat to film his goodbye video for his porn persona Adam Swift, who was now officially retired from the Mean Green Boys roster of models after roughly two years with the company. Give or take a few months for personal reasons.

He hadn’t actually shot a scene since late January, and he’d come to Charles about a permanent hiatus last month, while he sorted out his love life. And that love life had worked out, because Rick was retiring to be with his boyfriend Vinson. While Charles loved the energy and sexiness Rick brought to Mean Green, he was always proud to see a model leave to pursue other dreams. Mean Green was a small studio in central Pennsylvania, and Charles had always considered it more of a way station than a destination.

So many good, young men finding themselves and love.

Charles grinned as he shook Rick’s hand, then allowed it to turn into a hard hug. A year ago, Charles would have silently begrudged Rick his happiness and pined over his own unrequited feelings for another man. But now Charles himself was desperately in love with two wonderful men who were probably upstairs relaxing in the den, while Charles was downstairs working in the basement studio of their shared home.

“It’s been wonderful having you here, Rick,” Charles said as they pulled apart. “I mean that. You have overcome so much, and I’m very proud of you. Watching you pull your life together and sort out your past.”

“It hasn’t been easy.” Rick’s dark eyes shined with grief. His uncle had unexpectedly passed away two weeks ago, and he was obviously still sorting out his feelings on that. “Having Vinson in my life has been the biggest blessing of all.”

“He seems like a wonderful young man, like yourself.”

“And it’s not like this is goodbye, right?” Rick gazed around the studio, as if taking it all in like a guest might. “Dell and I are still friends, and I’m not leaving the area.”

“That’s good to hear. I do love checking in on my former men and seeing how their lives are shaping up. Please keep in touch, Rick.”

“I will. I guess I should go before your other models get here.”

“I won’t rush you out. It’s not as if you’ve never seen Perry or Avery naked.”

“True.”

The first time Rick shot a scene with Avery, their chemistry had been off the charts. Charles loved discovering genuine chemistry between his models, because they often needed less direction from him. He simply observed, while his director of photography Dell captured it all digitally.

And as if hearing Charles’s thoughts, light footsteps descended the basement steps, and moments later, his nephew and cameraman Dell Greenwood appeared. Since Rick’s goodbye was a static shot, Charles hadn’t needed Dell for it.

“So did you cry?” Dell teased Rick. “Tell me you cried.”

“I didn’t cry, you dork.” Rick took a light swipe at Dell. The pair had a complicated history Charles didn’t entirely understand, but they were friends again and in a good place. Each vibrant young man settled with a partner they loved. Happy.

“You gonna hang around while we shoot?” Dell asked.

“Can’t, I’m meeting Vinson and some of his family for dinner at six-thirty, so I should head out. Get back into the city.” The two embraced briefly. Rick gave the studio one more long look before he bounded up the stairs.

“These never get any easier to film,” Charles said as he detached Dell’s favorite camera from the tripod. His chest tightened with emotion as he thought about all the models who’d come and gone in the nearly ten years since he first opened Mean Green as a web cam site. Some men shot one scene and were gone. Others, like Rick, stayed for years and gained internet popularity.

“I bet,” Dell replied. “You have any interviews set up yet?”

“No.”

His stable of models was slowly dwindling, and Charles was at a bit of a loss as how to fix it. The biggest issue he faced was being located near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and the state had antiquated prostitution laws that made advertising open slots difficult. The studio existed here in secrecy, and the federal government’s newest attempts to stop sex trafficking had seriously, negatively impacted the lives of legitimate sex workers trying to make a living. Certain websites had closed, leaving Charles with fewer and fewer options for finding new models.

Maybe this is a sign that Mean Green has run its course.

Maybe. Maybe not.

“I could start going to the gym with Taro on Saturday mornings,” Dell said. “Chat up guys? I mean, that’s how Jon recruited Gabe, right?”

“It is, but you don’t have to do that. I’ll figure it out, son.”

The front door opened and shut, the familiar sound carrying down to the basement, and moments later Avery appeared. Average height, thickly muscled, long dreads tied back in a blue bandana, Avery had been with the studio less than a year, and he already had a strong following on the site.

“Hey, boss,” he said with a grin.

“Good evening,” Charles replied.

“Why do you guys look so serious?”

“I’ll make an official announcement tomorrow, but I suppose since you’re here. Adam Swift has officially retired from the company.”

“Aw, shit, really?” Avery scuffed his sneaker on the carpet. “He was a lot of fun to shoot with.”

“Yes, he was, but he’s moving on to new pastures, and I’m happy for him.”

“Well, then me too.”

Perry arrived a few minutes later, and Charles studied them as they chatted and fluffed themselves for the scene. Avery’s ebony skin next to Perry’s pale complexion, freckles and red hair. They’d previously shot together in an orgy scene Charles and Dell had filmed last fall. The scene had been a bear to edit, but they’d finally released it to rave responses from their viewers. This was the first time he’d been able to schedule the pair as a duo, and Charles was curious to see how it went.

Once they were both ready, Charles had them sit on the sofa. For the scene, he wanted them to open by chatting about the orgy scene, and how in this new scene they got each other all to themselves. The right models with the right chemistry could always sell that kind of opening, and they were convincing. Perry couldn’t stop eye-fucking Avery while they talked. Avery was a bit more subdued, and Charles couldn’t help wondering if he should have left the Adam Swift retirement news until after the scene.

Oh well, it couldn’t be helped now.

Both men performed well, and Dell moved around the set with his handheld, capturing the kisses, frotting, and hand jobs that started out the scene. Since both models were switches and experienced at being filmed, Charles allowed the men to find their way. Eventually, Perry put on a condom, and he fucked Avery over the arm of the sofa. Perry paused the fucking to eat Avery out while Avery vocally expressed his enthusiasm, then put him on his knees and fucked him again.

After a quick conversation that was too soft to capture on film—and would probably get edited out later—the pair switched, and Avery fucked Perry in several positions before creaming his back. Perry wrestled Avery onto the floor and kept him pinned while he rubbed off and finally came on Avery’s stomach. They kissed and laughed and smeared Perry’s come around a bit.

“Cut,” Charles said. “That was gorgeous, you two. Wonderful work.”

“Awesome.” Perry jumped up, then helped Avery stand. “That was fun, dude.”

“Yeah, it was.” Avery grinned, but something was off in his eyes.

Charles glanced at Dell to see if he’d noticed, but Dell was already reviewing the footage. His nephew tended not to comment on the shoot, preferring to hang back until the models had gone upstairs to shower. In the past, Charles had wondered about Dell’s somewhat prudish nature, but after Dell came out as asexual last fall, his disregard for naked bodies made a bit more sense.

Avery cleaned Perry’s back off with a baby wipe. “Made a mess of you, man.”

Perry snorted. “Well, I made a mess of you, too. Share the shower?”

“Nah, you go. I gotta wash these clothes anyway, so I’m gonna hit the road.”

“Suit yourself.”

Avery wiped himself off, and Charles held off approaching until Avery had his clothes back on. “Is something troubling you?” Charles asked softly.

“What?” Avery frowned. “Why, did I fuck something up?”

“No, the scene was great. You just seem a bit…off. My door is always open if you need to talk. About anything.”

“Appreciate it, but I’m cool. And I gotta split.”

“Understood. Take care, Avery.”

He watched Avery disappear up the stairs. Sometimes Charles got so used to referring to his models as their porn name, he forgot they were real people inside. People with lives, families, and other jobs. Every time one of his models came to Charles with a personal problem, it warmed him inside, and he always did his very best to help.

Not wanting to dig into Avery’s personal life by asking Dell if he knew anything, Charles helped him finish cleaning up and tucking supplies away. By the time they went upstairs, Perry was showered and gone.

“Drive safely,” Charles said to Dell, as was his habit ever since Dell moved out of the house and into an apartment in the city with another model.

“I will. Night, Uncle Charles.”

Dell let himself out, and Charles locked the door for the evening. The faint hum of voices drew him through the kitchen and into the den, where his boyfriends were sprawled together on the sofa watching television. Charles had walked quietly enough that they hadn’t heard his approach, and he wasn’t surprised, since both men were likely distracted by Cristian’s hand down Jake’s pants.

Charles took in the beautiful sight. Cristian Sable had height and muscles on the much slimmer Jake Bowden, and Jake was slotted between Cristian’s legs, Cristian’s back propped against the arm of the sofa. Neither man was naked, but Cristian’s hand moved in a steady up-and-down inside of Jake’s pants, and the position was both casual and possessive.

The complicated dance that eventually brought their threesome together had begun almost a year ago, but Charles’s feelings for Cristian had been in place for years. He thanked God each and every day that they’d found each other and were making it work, one day at a time.

In moments like these, when he could observe the pair from a distance, Charles also felt a pang of wistfulness. To be that young again, in his twenties like his boyfriends, still discovering what life was all about. Charles had far too much life experience under his belt. Twenty more years than Cristian and twenty-five more than Jake. The pair would still be young and beautiful when Charles was old and wrinkly. But whatever their reasons, they loved Charles for everything he was, and he loved them in return.

For as long as they wanted him.

“Fuck, you’re such a tease,” Jake said.

“You dared me,” Cristian replied in a tone Charles knew all too well.

“I did not. What I said was ‘how do you not get hard knowing they’re filming porn downstairs?’ You said ‘Years of knowing how hard they’re working to stay up.’”

“And then what did you say?”

Jake grumped.

“Yes, what did you say to Cristian?” Charles asked.

The pair startled, but Cristian never stopped stroking Jake. Jake rolled his eyes. “Okay, maybe I kind of dared him when I asked how long he thought he could keep me hard without letting me come.”

“Oh? And how long has it been?”

Cristian beamed at him. “Two hours. He’s starting to get a little feisty about it, and my hand is cramping.”

“Well then, how about I take over for a while?”

Jake squawked, but didn’t protest. Charles and Cristian swapped places, and Charles eagerly accepted Jake’s warm, lean body against his. Slid his hand under Jake’s underwear to clasp his cock. Jake humped back against Charles’s crotch, teasing him until Charles had a semi going. He rarely got hard during shoots, because he’d trained his body to know what was work and what was play, and his body very much loved how Jake played.

Charles stroked Jake’s erection in a loose, lazy grip. “So, Cristian, what are we watching while we torture Jake?”

“Well, we were watching an action movie that ended a little while ago,” Cristian replied as he sat on the other end of the couch. Put Jake’s feet in his lap to massage. “Maybe we should put some porn on to mess with his head.”

“You guys suck,” Jake said with a petulant whine.

“Yes, we do.” Cristian leered. “And very well, I might add.”

“Just think of your future orgasm,” Charles added. “Delayed gratification isn’t something we’ve done much, but it can be amazing. Especially for young brats who like to tease their elders.”

Jake pouted, so Charles pressed his thumbnail into Jake’s slit, earning a sharp hiss. Jake grabbed the knees of Charles’s slacks and ground his ass into Charles’s erection. “I don’t want delayed gratification, I want to come.”

“When we say so.”

“Ugh.” For all Jake’s protests, he didn’t get up, or take matters into his own hands. He gave in to whatever game Charles and Cristian decided to play, which meant his protests were part of the game. He was definitely enjoying himself.

In the nine-ish months since they’d declared themselves an official throuple, Charles was absolutely learning to read his men.

“What do think, Chet?” Cristian asked. “Think we should take him upstairs, strip him down, stick a cock ring on him, and make him wait until you and I get off?” The slight waggle on Cristian’s eyebrows suggested he was saying all that to wind Jake up more.

Charles grinned. “I think that’s a lovely idea. Jake needs to learn patience.”

“I’ve been hard for two hours, how much more patient can I get?” Jake asked. “Can I at least have a plug or something? My ass is so empty.” To illustrate, he pressed hard enough against Charles’s crotch to make him gasp. “Pleeeeeeease….”

“Fuck, he’s hard to resist,” Cristian said. “I don’t have a plug handy, but Chet’s kind of in the perfect position.”

Charles’s chest burned with arousal. Jake didn’t ask Charles to fuck him as frequently as he preferred Cristian, and that was fine. The moments when Jake did reach for Charles? Precious memories, all of them. Impaling Jake while Charles continued to tease his cock and amp him up?

Yes, please, and thank you, but Jake had to want that, too. And he hadn’t responded yet to Cristian’s statement. Charles angled to see Jake’s face better. Parted lips, wide eyes, rosy cheeks. No fear or hesitation, only a young man in the throes of lust.

“Is there lube down here?” Jake asked.

“Duh.” Cristian opened the bottom drawer of the TV console and produced a bottle. “We keep this shit stashed everywhere.” They’d ditched condoms months ago, and sometimes going upstairs for lube when the mood struck was irritating. So after Dell officially moved out, they’d left bottles in various rooms where fucking tended to happen, like the den, or Charles’s office.

Cristian proved himself resourceful and quite clever by being the one to get both Jake’s and Charles’s pants down and open, so Charles didn’t have to stop stroking Jake. He lubed Charles’s dick, then fingered Jake, slicking him up. Living butt plug was new for Charles, but he loved expanding his boundaries with his men. Loved Cristian bracing Charles’s dick, directing him toward Jake’s slick entrance. Helping Jake steady himself as he bore down. Pressure gave way to intense heat, and they held their collective breaths as Jake slowly, so agonizingly slowly, took Charles in until he was again situated on Charles’s lap.

“Oh, fuck, that’s intense,” Jake said. “Christ.”

Cristian reached between Jake’s legs, fingers brushing Jake’s rim and Charles’s cock. “If you were looser, I’d stick my finger in you, too.”

“Guh.”

They hadn’t double-penetrated Jake again since the first time, but Charles and Cristian frequently added fingers while the other was fucking Jake. And the first time Charles witnessed Cristian fucking Jake with four fingers? Gorgeous. They hadn’t worked up to Jake taking a full fist yet, but the frequent requests for stretching and fingering gave Charles hope he’d see that wonderful sight one day soon.

Charles stroked Jake’s dick, gasping each time Jake clenched around him, Jake barely able to fuck himself, because Cristian had both hands on Jake’s thighs. Keeping him steady, while Charles pulsed inside Jake’s body, kind of wishing he could move, but this wasn’t about Charles. This was about Jake. Pushing his limits. Driving him as high as possible before allowing his release.

“I don’t know, Chet,” Cristian said. “I really want to taste him. Look at all that precome. Shame to waste it.”

“Hmm.” Charles collected clear fluid from the tip of Jake’s dick and held his finger up for Cristian. Cristian sucked that finger into his mouth, tongue swirling, getting every last drop in a sensual way that went right to Charles’s cock. “How’s it taste?”

“Delicious.” Cristian leaned down and licked up Jake’s left thigh. “Every bit of him is delicious.”

Jake trembled. “Fuck, you guys are going to kill me. Chet’s so deep, and all I want is to come. Please.”

“Not yet,” Charles replied. Jake’s absolute trust in them spurred his desire to draw this out for as long as possible. To make Jake truly fall apart when they allowed his orgasm. And Jake had no idea how difficult it was for Charles to remain still while Jake’s hot channel squeezed around his own cock, demanding he turn Jake onto his knees and fuck him.

Jake whined. “Cris?”

“I’m on Chet’s side this time.” Cristian swooped in to kiss Jake. “We’ll get you there, babe.”

“I know. Guh.” His entire body began trembling, causing his ass to vibrate around Charles’s erection, and Charles wasn’t going to last much longer like this. Not with Jake’s entire body one big vibrator in his lap.

“Perhaps he needs to take his mind off his ass,” Charles said. “Cristian?”

With a devilish smirk, Cristian shoved his own sweatpants down, showing off his lovely cock. Jake eagerly took Cristian into his mouth, and Charles held Jake by the hips so he didn’t rock too much and make Charles blast off. Jake used every move he knew Cristian loved, and almost too soon, he swallowed Cristian’s load.

“Gorgeous,” Charles said. “Mouth or ass, Jake?”

Jake swallowed hard, then twisted his neck to give Charles a sloppy, come-filled kiss. “Ass. In me.”

Fuck yes.

Firmly holding Jake’s narrow hips, Charles lifted him up just enough to fuck Jake’s toned ass. Small, hard thrusts, until his orgasm stole over and Charles shoved in, filling his boyfriend. Jake cried out, a head of dark hair bobbing in his lap. Cristian sucked Jake to his own release, and Charles saw stars as Jake’s hole clenched around his spent dick.

“Holy fucking God,” Jake said. “Oh fuck.” He sagged against Charles’s chest, boneless and panting. “Fuck.”

Charles chuckled. “Worth the wait?”

“Hell yeah.” He started laughing, and Charles noticed Cristian licking his way up Jake’s torso to his chest, where he paused to bite Jake’s nipples. “Oh, God, you’re going to get me hard again.”

“And this is a problem?” Cristian asked.

“It is when I have to work in the morning.”

“Spoilsport.”

“Can I get up now?” Jake clenched again. “My butt plug is going soft.”

With another chuff of laughter, they both helped Jake up and off Charles’s dick. The sight of his own come smearing Jake’s ass sent a small bolt of pride through Charles’s chest. He loved coming inside his men, and he didn’t care if that was caveman of him. They were his, and he was theirs to fill as they wished. Or didn’t wish, depending on who was in what mood. Three men, three libidos, three desires, but they made it work by talking.

Sometimes Jake still had trouble asking for what he wanted, and sometimes Charles and Cristian had to take control, like tonight, but for the most part they were equals in bed.

“Come on, love,” Charles said to Jake as he stood. “Let’s rinse off and go to bed.”

Jake cracked a yawn. “I’m down for that. Yes. Bed.” Instead of walking, he melted against Cristian in an adorably helpless way.

Cristian rolled his eyes at Charles, then scooped Jake over his shoulder in a fireman’s carry. Charles had no idea how that was comfortable, but Jake seemed to love it when Cristian manhandled him. The pair had always been very physical with each other, more so than Jake was with Charles, or Charles with Cristian, and that was okay. They had separate relationships with each other apart from the triad, and they all had to be nurtured to thrive.

Cristian carried Jake upstairs to their bedroom and deposited him in the large walk-in shower. They all three stripped of the last of their clothes and took turns washing each other, playing and teasing, until Jake looked dead on his feet. He was a napper after a big orgasm, and he’d been edged for a while. Jake passed out in the middle of their king bed. Charles kissed Cristian goodnight, then climbed in on the left side, Cristian on the right.

From the very first night they all three shared a bed, this was how they’d slept, and it had become tradition. Jake in between them. And not because Jake was between them, but because he needed the comfort and protection, and they’d been more than willing to give it to him.

Charles lay in bed for a while after he sensed Cristian had fallen asleep, simply listening to them breathe. Secure in the relationships he had now, but still uncertain about the future. Not only five or ten years down the road, but also next week. Next year. Would Mean Green continue to thrive in its own small way, or was it doomed to peter out and close shop?

Only time would tell, and Charles would continue to celebrate queer sex with eager, consenting young men for as long as life allowed. And then, with his men by his sides, he’d face whatever came next.

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