Three hours later and his smell is still on my skin. His aftershave, his arsehole, his spit, his cum, his mouth, his nostrils, his skin that was so smooth it seemed to catch the late-afternoon light on its surface. Like glass. But warm and soft. Think of any Bel Ami porn star and Stefan looked liked him. He was, as they say, naturally smooth. Just a bit of hair under his arms, a small and downy bush of pubes, and that was about it. His legs, his torso, his crack – all smooth. He said he shaved his treasure trail.
I like smooth men. Sometimes I wonder if my desire for smooth men is more out of envy than a genuine attraction; maybe all desire has an element of envy in it, a desire to possess. Sometimes I think I question my desire too much, or not enough; I’m not sure. He really was beautiful. All my life I have been lucky with men, and yet… well, I want to say it’s a surprise every time when I land up with a beautiful man, when beautiful men want to have sex with me, but really it’s not a surprise anymore. I don’t feel intimidated into impotency.
“I know,” I say. “I am.”
But I wasn’t sure if I was intimidated by Stefan’s beauty, or just uninterested in having sex with him. Sometimes I think I’m coming to the end of my addiction, and at others I wonder if I’m just losing interest in sex. Am I tired of the continual sense of rejection that is inherent in being a single gay man. The frustration. Sex doesn’t satisfy my hunger for intimacy the way it used to. For many years it did. For many years, up until recently, a trip to the sauna once or twice a week for good sex was all I needed.
Stefan and I grew up in the same country, at different ends of the country, from different backgrounds – cultural, ethnic, that sort of thing. He’s an Afrikaner. His family are farmers. The first thing he says to me is the much related “coma story” of so many South Africans: “It’s hard being white in South Africa nowadays. All the jobs are being given to people who aren’t trained to do them.” Blah blah blah.
So I say, as we stand at the kitchen door sipping water as if it were wine: “I imagine it’s still pretty hard being Black in South Africa, too,” I say.
“Yes, but…” he says, but I’ve switched off by then, focusing more on his biceps and the way his little nipples press against the thin grey fabric of his T-shirt. He’s tall, my height, and boyish. He’s in his mid-thirties and he has a thing for older men. His mom’s a lesbian and he only met his dad when he was about fifteen. We both have a couple of gay cousins. He’s the youngest of his siblings; I’m the oldest. We’re both alone here in London, without family. He’s been here for eight years; I’ve been here for double that. We talk easily. I like that ease that happens when I’m around South Africans; I never have to repeat myself – my accent is understood. I can even relax into a stronger accent.
I suggest we move over to the sofa.
“You’re shaking,” I say.
“No, I’m not,” he says. “Should I be?”
“Would you like to be?” I say.
We keep talking, until I lean over and kiss him and it’s good. He’s a good kisser, hungry, eager, his mouth and mine fit well together. There is, however, that strange energy that exists when two men who like similar things – ie. to fuck – get together. It’s a bit like when you put the wrong sides of two magnets together; the pushing against each other is interesting, forceful, but there’s going to be some discord, some dissonance, and in the end: nothing. Still, it was good, and perhaps if I had wanted to be fucked, or if I’d been as excited about fucking him as he’d been about getting fucked, things would have been close to perfect. Even perfect.
“Let’s go to your bedroom,” he said. “So I can get you out of those clothes.”
People remind you of other people and when they remind you of people you love, that can be nice; it can add to their attraction. Stefan reminded me of a man I do not like to be reminded of, a handsome man, a sexy man, but a man who behaved like an arsehole. I should probably make a joke about the bigger a man’s arsehole, the bigger an arsehole he is, but that statement’s not true. I’d imagine that men with tight arseholes are more likely to be bigger arseholes. Anyway…
Stefan wanted to be fucked and I obliged.
After we’d come we lay on the bed. He told me he’d only recently started enjoying getting fucked and that he was scared of turning into a total bottom.
“Why?” I said. “Because of the embarrassment.”
I meant it as a joke, but he didn’t have much of a sense of humour, so he answered seriously, said it was for some other reason, which I don’t remember, because he wasn’t that interesting to listen to. People with 9-to-5 jobs rarely are, and particularly those who don’t like their jobs and don’t know what they do like or what they would do if they didn’t have to do the job they were doing at the moment. I could imagine him as a hustler, being in porn. He had a good thick cock, the kind of cock that would look good on camera going in and out of someone’s arse. He also had the kind of arse that would be perfect for close-ups, the kind of arse that was nice to rim, even though I don’t rim that much anymore.
Eventually Stefan got dressed and we thanked each other and wished each other a good week and he rushed away, avoided eye-contact, avoided a hug, a kiss. It was an odd parting. I stood at the door and said aloud: “Oh.” Thinking: We’ve just had intense sex; we’ve spat into each other’s mouths; we’ve done circular breathing (I taught him how); I’ve had my cock in your arse and come on your chest; we’ve spent some time on the sofa and then on the bed, chatting, and you didn’t want a hug?
Maybe he was embarrassed by what he’d just done. Maybe he was still uncomfortable about being fucked. Maybe he regretted having sex with me. Maybe it had been one of those encounters when you go along with it because you’re so horny and you can’t be bothered to leave and look for sex elsewhere. Who knows. I did that quite a lot in my twenties, even in my thirties. It always left me feeling like shit. But this afternoon I had a good time. I’d enjoyed his body, enjoyed my own body, the feel of his hands on my back. I’d enjoyed having someone in my bed after a long time of not having sex at home. It was hot. But now it was evening and the air was cool. So I stepped back inside and closed the door.