Here’s chapter 26 of the new book, Dr. Clay, I’ve been writing since NaNoWriMo 2022. Enjoy reading. Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below.
He was going to enjoy this, Valon thought as he leaned against his black four-by-four SUV parked near the main gate, waiting for Clay to come outside. Even though he was uncertain how long he could stand there and wait, he looked down, surprisingly restraining himself from the gushing impatience.
As he went on closing his eyes, he tried to make sense of what and why he was doing this project and the invitation he had made. Then, when he reached the point of restlessness, he grabbed a cigarette from his pocket, squeezed the stick between his teeth, took the lighter out, and lit it, puffing a cloud of smoke to ease. When it didn’t work out, he pointed his foot at the ground, tapping it to alleviate his boredom while tucking his hands in his pockets.
In the meantime, inside the De Lara Mansion, Clay opened his eyes and looked sideways to check whether Elizabeth was awake. When he raised his head, facing her, he studied her face, figuring out if she was asleep. Then, he pulled his torso up, reclining, though his eyes glued on her, wishing she wouldn’t react if he left. Satisfied, he pushed his blanket away and dragged himself out of bed as he went to his closet while removing his sleeping clothes. Then, he took the ones he had prepared earlier and wore them as silently as he could before he headed outside on tiptoes and closed the door, trying not to make a noise.
Outside, Valon flinched when he heard the door opening and saw Clay walking out, gently closing the door. He smiled, twitching an eyebrow when he finally saw him walking in his direction. His excitement was high as if he was a desperate lover about to give up and wasn’t anticipating this rendezvous. Before Clay could arrive, he sipped his cigarette, sucked it, and puffed the last cloud of smoke from his mouth. Then, he threw the consumed stick and stepped on it while eyeing Clay.
“Have you been waiting for me?” Clay asked.
“Yes,” Valon replied.
“For how long? Don’t tell me you’ve been waiting here the whole night for me.”
“What if I say I did? Would you care?”
Without saying a word, Clay looked at him as he nodded, while his eyes couldn’t seem to let go as he kept looking at him, taking a moment to study the man’s face and appreciate his towering height. Even though it was still late at night, pitch black, and he barely could see the surroundings, the lights from the posts cast over them were enough for Clay to see the man’s outstanding beauty.
Valon had a fairer skin complexion, and his facial features were more defined, matching his pointy nose, thin lips, and brown eyes. From his perspective as a doctor, Valon was a mestizo without a doubt. So, in Clay’s mind, a doctor he was, it would make sense why Valon looked a bit different from most people he’d met. He looked a bit more foreign for a Filipino.
Little did he know Valon was doing the same—relishing the moment to enjoy an unmatched view he would only see whenever the doctor was out, as Valon guessed. He didn’t mind how unprepared Clay was or how disintegrated his mind was. No, he didn’t care about that anymore because he was preoccupied with something else.
Because, God, everything about Clay radiated sex in his eyes, from the look of his well-built body to how he moved to the smell of his skin. He was like no man he’d ever come across before. And Valon knew it was just as straightforward as his mind and body did, even though one couldn’t see how he admired the doctor to such an extent he would confuse this innocent admiration with infatuation.
Although he tried to keep this relationship as professional as possible, the infatuation he felt towards Clay was dangerous from the start as it convinced his mind to fulfill a sense of sexual obligation, which, in his mind, was utterly unnecessary. Wasn’t it?
“Hop in,” Valon said.
“Now?” Clay replied, raising his voice.
Valon smirked and didn’t say more, leaving Clay anxious as more questions filled his mind. He walked around and slid into the passenger’s seat, pulling the seat belts, before Valon drove off.
While driving, Valon and Clay remained silent until they reached the intersection towards the Poblacion. After the car detoured to the other lane, Clay looked at Valon, who kept his attention on the road. He felt queasier the longer Valon kept his mouth shut, leaving him in utter mental discomfort. It was as if he couldn’t stand the silence between them anymore. He wanted to talk to him. He demanded Valon explain why he was always avoiding him since Elizabeth arrived at the villa.
However, as much as he desired to let his feelings override his decency, his mind wouldn’t let him do what he wanted. So, he ended up with nothing but clearing his throat in a petty attempt to earn his attention.
“Have you ever done this before?” Clay asked, almost stuttering.
Valon shook his head while boring him with his eyes as if satisfied to see his man again. It was as if he had been waiting for this moment to solo him so long that he couldn’t help but shoot a grin, reaching both his ears. “No, it’s the first time I’m doing this, and I’m happy to do it with you,” he said.
“That’s great. I’m honored. So, where are we going?” This time, Clay’s voice sharpened.
But that didn’t work for Valon, as he remained still and calm. “I rented an old warehouse in a nearby industrial district and converted it into an atelier, where I could work on projects like this in private.”
“That’s cool. I hope you don’t mind me asking, but why do we have to sneak out in the middle of the night? Why can’t we do this during daytime or—”
“I can’t work during the daytime, Clay. Most artists work best at night. We’re late owls. So, we have to do this when everybody’s asleep.”
“But what if Liz—”
At that moment, Valon sensed more than Clay was asking, and it felt like a hard punch in his gut when he realized it. Was it because he was an artist who demanded professionalism from his muse, or was he a jealous lover who couldn’t accept divided attention from his chosen one?
Out of nowhere, he suddenly dared to step on the break and pull the car towards the curb, which surprised Clay. In Valon’s mind, something was clear, and he was now trying to get his full attention. Whatever that full attention meant for him.
“Wait. What are you doing? Why did we stop here?” Clay asked, raising his voice, unknowingly sounding defensive.
“Do you understand how this means a lot to me, Clay?”
“I do. I really do. But how could I be sure that this won’t hurt anybody?”
“Are you worried about Liz?” Valon paused as they briefly exchanged gazes again. He pressed his lips as he flicked his head, attempting to hide his discomfort. Before he landed a piercing glare, he inhaled and exhaled deep sighs, thinking they would help him keep calm. But then, when he couldn’t stand the increasing discomfort he felt inside him, he unlatched his seat belt and jumped out of the car.
“Where the hell are you going?” Clay asked, attempting to stop Valon from walking out. But he was too late. So, he did the same thing—freeing himself from his seat and hopping out of the truck. Then, when he was outside, he walked towards Valon and stood before him. “What are you doing?”
“I understand why you have to feel that way. But then again, I’d asked you many times before, and still, you chose me over her. And now, don’t tell me you’re backing out because you’re worried about her goddamn feelings!”
Clay flinched. Goddammit. He must have tested his patience so much that Valon raised his voice like that, which he never did before. As he continued observing the man, walking to and fro in circles, he noticed his bloodshot eyes tearing up, even though he kept looking away, attempting to hide his vulnerability. However, he couldn’t stand the show anymore.
When Valon returned to his senses, his eyes widened and squeezed them while his face flushed. He looked away, rubbing his face with his hand and sighing loud, frustrated groans. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to….” He clucked when he couldn’t finish the sentence. Tears welled around his eyes. Though he felt choked, he tried to make attempts to save his face and keep up the stoic facade he had built for himself.
Clay walked closer to him as his hand found a way to cradle Valon’s face, inviting him to look into his eyes and realize his intention. “It’s okay. I understand what this means for you, Val. And I’m sorry.”
Valon didn’t have qualms answering the weight of Clay’s stares as he gazed at him as if he was enjoying this moment he had longed for. Without saying a word, he grabbed Clay with his arm wrapped around his back. As he pulled him closer, Clay arched his back while gently raising his face enough to reach his height. He gulped when his eyes landed on his lips, provoking a sexual stirring, though he resisted the urge not to.
“Kiss me,” Clay whispered, purring as if he was inviting Valon to join the fun he desired, while his heart was beating triple time as he winced when his face hovered above him, casting a silent menace, boring into his soul. It was then he first noticed how his face had softened. He thought he must be crazy for wanting this man more than he could ever wish for. Not even his love for Elizabeth could save him from this.
Valon closed his eyes as he pulled his face closer to Clay, his arm locking him in possession while his mind pictured himself tasting his lips for the first time. In his mind, it was wrong for him to imagine those things with Clay—a man who had marked his entire life in service of others.
With that in mind, Valon hoped he could keep his feelings to himself and save himself from damning consequences. As it turned out, it was a nightmare because he realized he’d been held back for so long that as he felt Clay’s arms around his neck, pulling him closer to his lips, he thought, damn. He had no way out. Although he barely questioned his decisions, it was different and too late to decide when Clay kissed his lips for the first time.
As their lips locked, swallowing each other, Valon felt pleasure, and he’d only wanted more of it. Though he had always been a gentleman, his actions flew in the face of his notions of himself. But it wasn’t the case anymore as he felt his lips pressed onto his, although, in hindsight, he struggled to accept the terrible truth of his wanting.
Then, Clay pulled away while eyeing him with his mouth open and saw Valon panting as he caught his breath. He blinked momentarily, realizing what he had done before Valon caught him with his stares with more interest. He gulped and sighed, muzzling his face with his hand.
“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to… kiss you like that,” Clay said, looking away, without knowing how Valon must have felt, hearing those words leaving his mouth.
Of course, he wasn’t stupid for not being able to recognize how he felt used. However, he couldn’t find the courage to express his sentiment towards the doctor. So, when he couldn’t say a word to answer that, Valon walked around the car and hopped inside as he waited for Clay to slide in the passenger’s seat and continue driving until they reached the atelier Valon had talked about earlier.
“We’re getting there,” Valon said with a big smile as he pulled into the car into a long, curving, narrow driveway. It was, in fact, at the dead end of the street where old warehouses were. Many of these abandoned warehouses have been converted into valuable facilities like the one you could see a few streets from the district’s entry gate, where you find various prefab structures such as coffeehouses and resto-bars.
The more you drove inwards toward the inner city of this industrial district, the more you could find old warehouses such as the one Valon had. The structure had been abandoned for quite some time, and its location was near the dead end approaching the forests behind the cemented rail. One could see nature overtaking the walls, which made it even more perfect for an artist’s private hiding place.
Clay walked in with his eyes widened in shock at what he saw. It had everything he needed for this project to work as planned. Perfectly anonymous. Perfectly hidden.
Valon removed a key from his pocket and pressed the button, and the buzzing sound echoed. As the steel garage gate pulled up, it revealed a massive space that could fit five trucks without problems. Then, he drove into the garage and pressed the button again to close the garage gate.
“We’re here. So, let’s get out now,” he said, inviting Clay as he was unlatching himself from his seat.
As they both jumped out of the truck, Valon glanced at the doctor, observing him before he went on, turning on the switch to turn the lights on.
His eyes widened when he saw how spacious and high the atelier was, even though installed steel frames for room dividers were in place. As he guessed, it could have been at least a hundred-square-meter warehouse, and its ceiling could reach at least five to seven meters high, where curtains of different colors and themes draped from above. The room had a few light bulbs hanging over their heads, enough to enlighten the room. With its space, one would think this was a photographer’s room, not a painter’s workspace. He was in awe of what Valon had revealed, as if he was in a different world.
Man. Valon had his demons, and they were no walk in the park. But he wouldn’t have wanted Clay to bear the cross. Seeing what he had done was a terrible burden. Seemingly undisturbed, Valon approached Clay, looking around and expecting his fierce intellect to churn over the situation. Though he stiffened, he’d been expecting this.
“What is this place?” Clay asked while his eyes sharpened, and he couldn’t stop wandering every corner of this dark room. Assuming it was Valon’s most private place, he couldn’t stop asking himself questions to convince himself of the extremes of this man. When he turned his back and looked at him, he could see how Valon sharpened the look in his eyes after pushing his long, brown hair back, combing its curly strands with his fingers. He was sexy as hell.
His feet slowed, thinking now that he had Clay in his hands. He shot him with his trademark grin that first moment, leaving him confused.
“Why are you smiling at me like that?” Clay asked.
As they exchanged gazes, having fun with their brief awkward silence, Valon, in turn, stiffened, relishing this moment he had been waiting for. “I still couldn’t believe you were here with me. Right here. Right now,” Valon said as he took his hand while his eyes crawled from his fingers up, tracing every inch of his face.
“So, how do we start this?” Clay asked with his eyes widened in anticipation and then narrowed with suspicion.
Without saying anything, Valon smirked as he removed his Bolero and pulled his shirt up, leaving Clay more confused than he was.
“Wait. What are you doing? Why are you taking off your clothes?” Clay asked again. His voice was scissor-sharp with anger.
Then, Valon paused as he bored his eyes again into his and let out soft exasperated sighs. “If you’re that desperate to end this soon, we must remove all our clothes so we can start right away,” he sputtered.
“You mean both of us? Naked?” Clay asked louder, repeating what Valon said.
“Yes, Clay. Both of us should be naked when we begin. Are we clear on that?” Valon replied as he went on, removing his clothes.
Thank you so much for spending time reading this chapter. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did when I wrote this part three months ago. This chapter, in particular, reminded me of those times when I sat before my desk, seemingly prepared to type in words, but I struggled to keep it up.
It took an external motivation to get it through, and, at that time, the NaNoWriMo event was upcoming. At that time, I thought, “This could be a great opportunity to try and give this a shot one more time. You’d done an excellent job with ‘The Rival,’ so you could do it, Mecyll.”
You know, it’s easier said than done because writing a chapter with a clear intent to finish it requires more than just a skill. Since I started writing fiction, I realized how much this work demands my ability to be naked and the guarantees to answer whether I was mentally, emotionally, and spiritually prepared to face my fears, conscious or unconscious.
So, being able to write this down meant I managed despite the countless times dancing around with depression and enjoying the roller coaster rides my anxiety provided me.
This is why I don’t know how to thank you for your support, regardless of the scale or contribution size, from sharing my work with others or buying my books. It doesn’t matter because, for me, every small act you show is appreciated.
Again, thank you, and have a great day!
If you like to support my writing life, here’s what you can do:
- Get a copy of “The Rival” Uncensored Gay Romance Novel.
- Check out my upcoming book, “Non-Native Speakers Only.”
- Find more writing tips on my website (i.e., content writing, freelance writing, copywriting, self-publishing, novel writing, and many more!)