Equals Series Outtake – Stephen and Jeremy’s First Meeting
Notes: I’ve had an idea for this scene since I wrote Equals. Jeremy is such a compelling character for me and I love Stephen so much. I couldn’t stop imagining what their first meeting was like. I haven’t been able to do much writing lately, but recently I felt the urge to write and I wanted to work on something I didn’t need to do any research for. This scene flowed right out and I hope you enjoy it. It is unbeta’d so ignore any wayward commas.
This is set 15 years before Russ and Stephen ever meet.
Inspiration for Jeremy Inspiration for Stephen
“…in conclusion, being out in the business world does not have to mean sacrificing a successful career. In fact, under the right circumstances it can lead to a more positive working environment that benefits all employees.” Stephen tidied the notes resting on the lectern and smiled at the crowd, trying not to let his gaze linger on the young man in the second row who’d been eyeing him since he began his speech. “Thank you for having me here today. I wish all of you great success with your future careers.”
He acknowledged the applause with a nod of his head and stepped back. He took a seat again as the final speaker stepped forward and began. Despite his best efforts, his gaze wandered to the young man again and was rewarded with a wink. Stephen’s mouth quirked up at the corner in response. Like most of the students here, the guy appeared to be in his early twenties. He had a square jaw and a smirk that wouldn’t quit. He hadn’t taken his eyes off Stephen since the lecture began and Stephen couldn’t deny that he was flattered by the attention.
Taking part in the guest lecture series offered by the UGA gay-straight alliance group was something Stephen enjoyed, but he certainly hadn’t come expecting to pick up a man. It had been a long dry spell for him though–nearly a year–and he couldn’t deny how attractive the guy checking him out was. There was no guarantee they’d hit it off once they got to know each other, but Stephen definitely had plans to ask him out to dinner.
By the time the final speech was done, Stephen was half-hard from the attention and not entirely sure if his increased heart rate and the fluttering feeling in his stomach was from nerves or anticipation.
As expected, the moment the speeches ended and the students and guest speakers began to mingle, the young brown-haired man made a beeline for Stephen. Unfortunately, Stephen got caught up in the crowd and had to spend far too long making small-talk with fellow business leaders congratulating him on his speech and students asking him questions. With half his attention focused elsewhere, Stephen eventually managed to wrap up the conversations and excuse himself. The moment there was an opening, the young man crossed the room, headed straight for Stephen.
Between the slight swagger in his walk and his direct gaze, he gave off the kind of confidence Stephen envied. He’d come a long way, but in college he’d had to work for that kind of self-assured attitude. It had never come naturally for him.
“Hey there.” The man greeted him, his gaze traveling up and down Stephen’s body as his tongue peeked out briefly to wet his lips. “Great speech.”
“Thank you. I’m glad you enjoyed it.”
“Stephen, right?” The young man stuck out his hand. “I’m Jeremy Lewis.”
“Yes, Stephen Parker.” They clasped hands and the touch lingered longer than most handshakes, ending with a swipe of Jeremy’s thumb across the back of his hand. Up close, Stephen could see that Jeremy’s eyes were hazel, somewhere between a warm brown and green and he had a cleft in his firm chin. Damn, he was handsome. “Nice to meet you, Jeremy.”
He was rewarded with another smirk. “Look, Stephen I could bullshit you and tell you I wanted to buy you a cup of coffee so we could talk more about being gay in the business world, but I hate making small talk. We both know it would just be a prelude to me inviting you back to my apartment, anyway. Why don’t we skip the preliminaries and get to the good stuff?”
Jeremy’s voice was pitched low, but Stephen still glanced around to see if anyone was listening to their conversation. They didn’t appear to be, but he leaned in anyway, his eyebrows raising in question. “The good stuff?”
“Sure,” Jeremy said. “You, me, a box of condoms, and enough lube we could swim in it.”
The loud bark of a laugh that came out of Stephen seemed to startle them both. Jeremy grinned, revealing white, even teeth. Stephen wasn’t sure how they’d gone from introductions to discussing the potential for sex, but he couldn’t deny that a part of him responded to Jeremy’s assumption that they would be lovers, cocky as it was. “I’m afraid I don’t have that much lube.”
Jeremy shrugged. “That can be remedied. So, my place or yours?”
Stephen crossed his arms over his chest and gave Jeremy and assessing glance. “What makes you think I’m even interested?”
“Because the eye-fucking we’ve been doing definitely hasn’t been one-sided.”
Grinning, Stephen acknowledged the truth of the statement with a nod. “Fine. I’m not denying I’m interested, but I am a little taken aback by the speed at which we’re going about things. I typically prefer to get to know my partner first.”
Jeremy rolled his eyes. “Don’t tell me you’re the sex-only-in-relationships type? How depressingly heteronormative of you.”
“I never said that,” Stephen countered. “But I find sex is better if I know the man under me.”
“Jeremy Christopher Lewis. Age twenty. 6’1” tall. Born June 5 in 1979. Gemini. Business Administration major. HIV negative. Versatile. And gagging to suck you off. Any other questions?”
Stephen coughed and cleared his throat. “That wasn’t quite what I meant.”
Jeremy shrugged, the impish grin never leaving his face. “Look, we can go out for coffee and get to know each other if you want, but I think we’d both be lying to ourselves if we pretend like we’re thinking about anything but getting each other off.”
Grinning back, Stephen admitted defeat. “Fine. But how about after the first orgasm each, we take a little time to get to know each other, verbally rather than physically?”
“Deal.” Jeremy stuck his hand out to shake and they began to move toward the exit. “So, should I call you Daddy?”
The nickname made Stephen shudder. “No. God no. Calling me Daddy is the quickest way to end this before it even begins.”
Grinning, Jeremy nodded. “I’ll remember that.”
Stephen rested a hand against Jeremy’s lower back as he held the door open, ushering him out into the warm evening air.
Jeremy paused outside the building and gave Stephen a speculative look. “So, my place or yours?”
“I have a king-size bed,” Stephen offered.
“I like the way you think.”
Stephen glanced around to be sure no one was watching them before he leaned in spoke in Jeremy’s ear. “You’ll like it even better when I have you bent over that bed, begging for my cock.”
“I was starting to think you might not be able to keep up with me, old man,” Jeremy teased.
Stephen slung an arm across Jeremy’s shoulder. “Oh, I won’t have any trouble keeping up with you, pretty boy, don’t you worry.”