SONGS YOU KNOW BY HEART: chapter 1
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David left the party without saying goodbye. He now deeply regretted the time and energy his secretary had spent on finding him a costume, even if he did look damn good in breeches and a frock coat.
Fondue, for God’s sake, like it was 1975, and most of the guests seemed to have hit their peak in the seventies too. A headache was creeping up on him from the terrible vodka, and the cat’s piss Ian had tried to pass off as 1947 Cheval Blanc was the last straw.
Out on the street, he stood still for a second and let the breeze chill him while he waited for an opening in the traffic. He’d take a shortcut through the park and be home in ten minutes. He set out as briskly as his blood alcohol level would allow.
The cherry trees were in bloom, thick as snow along the boughs. David passed into their shadow and stopped to look up at the glow of blossoms in the dark.
From just behind him came a voice: “Don’t move.”
David started to turn automatically, but a hard shove sent him to his knees, pieces of gravel and bark stinging his palms. Something sharp and cold pricked at the back of his neck, and he froze.
“Up,” the man said.
David rose unsteadily and rubbed his palms over his thighs. He glanced back but saw the man behind him only as a dark shape in tight jeans. Long hair and poor light obscured his face.
He got another shove, this time against a tree. “Money,” the man said. “Where are the fucking pockets in these pants?”
“Breeches don’t have pockets,” David said, with enunciation careful enough to compensate for the vodka. “That is why I don’t have money.”
“You don’t – fuck. Like hell you don’t.” The man crowded in close behind him, holding him in place with his body. “You must have something. Give it to me, or – or I’ll cut you. I will.”
David could hear the man’s quick breaths. His heartbeat thudded against David’s back. The knife was so sharp that David could barely feel the edge. David tried to concentrate on that instead of the man’s solid warmth, his hard thighs, his hair brushing David’s neck. Knives didn’t usually do it for him.
“I don’t,” he said, voice just a little unsteady. He swallowed hard. “I promise.” And then, unable to help himself: “Search me.”
“I will,” the man growled. “Don’t fucking move.”
One hand groped up David’s sides, over his chest and his hips. A rough, hard grip on his ass seemed to linger a little too long and pulled a shaky gasp from him.
The side of the man’s hand covered David’s mouth, and the knife lay flat against his cheek. The other hand slid slowly and thoroughly over the curve of his ass and down his thigh. David tried not to squirm. Or to push back into the touch. He’d done stupider things, but he tried not to add to that list these days.
The man slammed a hand against the tree. David jumped. The blade was back at his throat, and it caught against his Adam’s apple. His heartbeat picked up, and he felt his cock stir. He might need to rethink his position on knives. And his sanity.
“You gotta have something. Twenty bucks. Come on. Rich assholes like you don’t walk around with nothing.”
“We do when we don’t have any pockets.”
“Are you laughing at me, fuckface? Fine. Get out of this, take it off.”
He yanked at David’s jacket hard enough to make him stagger. A seam gave way. David struggled out of it, hands shaky.
The knife point drew a sharp line between his shoulder blades. “Shirt too.”
David worked at the buttons, but not fast enough to keep the man from slicing his shirt up the back. A few more seconds and it lay on the ground, certainly in no fit state to be returned to the costume shop.
The man grabbed his shoulder, turned him, and shoved him back against the tree. He planted a hand on David’s chest. He was close enough that David could see his eyes, gray and sharp, the color of dawn.
“You want to lose the pants too? Come on. Cough up the cash.”
David curled his fingers against the trunk. He could feel his cock stiffening despite his best efforts to think about anything else. Breeches hid nothing, and he held his breath as the man’s eyes traveled down his body.
“Are you getting off on this? What the fuck is wrong with you?” He sounded more confused than angry, and he was still staring.
“I really don’t have any money.” David swallowed. He tried once again to keep his mouth shut, but he’d never been particularly good at that. “Maybe you’d like something else.”
The man frowned at him, like he didn’t understand what David was offering, and then his mouth sagged open as he got it. He surged forward, pinning David hard with his body, knife tight against his throat again.
“I don’t like being laughed at, asshole. I thought I made that pretty fucking clear.”
Maybe not, but he liked something about the situation. David could feel his cock pressed against his thigh, and it wasn’t entirely soft. He seemed to realize that at the same time David did. A moment of stillness stretched between them, and then the man took a step back.
“Fuck you, man. You’re nuts. Just – get out of here. And don’t tell anyone. Or I’ll find you.” His voice wavered on the last sentence, and then he took off running into the dark.