Last week was rather painful for Shy. This week, we find out what Wyatt did, after Shy left him to go home to Randy, in Episode #16 of No Way Out. Don't forget to see what the other Briefers are up to. Their links follow my tale. Enjoy!
No Way Out #16
Wyatt lingered for a few minutes after Shy had gone, in the vain hope that he’d return. That maybe they’d pick up the pieces of their shattered time together... and maybe Wyatt could help put the pieces in place, help make Shy whole.
But he was fooling himself and he knew it. The little he’d heard of Shy’s conversation...Shy’s eerie “Yes, Sir” still rang in his head...He knew there was no coming back.
Lukas didn’t ask unnecessary questions, luckily. He agreed to meet Wyatt at the house in about an hour and told Wyatt to chill until he arrived. That would give time for Wyatt to put his thoughts in order. What was he going to say? That he thought it was creepy that Shy called Randy Sir?
And when asked, what reason could he give for even caring?
When he pulled Masterson’s big luxury car into the drive, he glanced across the street. No sign of Randy. He parked and went inside, still debating what he was going to say. By the time Lukas showed up, approximately an hour after they’d spoken, he’d yet to think of anything.
He opened the door to his mentor, forcing a cheerfulness into his voice that he was far from feeling. “Enter at your own risk,” he intoned in the accents of an Eastern European bloodsucker. Rather than laughing, Lukas cocked an eyebrow at him, and handed him a paper bag he held.
“What’s that?” Wyatt stared at the paper bag in his hand.
“Cheap wine. Sometimes you just have to do it.” Lukas brushed past him, more familiar with the house than Wyatt. “I’ll grab the glasses and meet you in the living room.” His voice brooked no argument, and Wyatt had none to give.
Tossing the bag into a trash can, Wyatt set the bottle on the glass-topped coffee table, slumping onto the white brocade sofa. Lukas joined him moments later, stemware in his hand. He set it down and poured. Neither spoke, as Wyatt studied his mentor, still debating what he would say now that he was here.
Lukas Callahan was a respected artist in his own right. Wyatt had been lucky to catch his eye at the university, at a student art show. Lukas had taken Wyatt under his wing; he was his mentor and his friend. In his early forties, Lukas took good care of himself. His hair was pure black, without a trace of gray. His brown eyes were warm cups of coffee against his tan skin. A well-manicured goatee surrounded pale red lips.
Right now, his eyes seemed to bore into Wyatt’s very soul, which didn’t help.
Lukas handed him a glass of wine. He took the other and seated himself beside Wyatt, leaning back, one arm across the back of the couch as he sipped, staring at Wyatt over the rim.
“How’s your art coming?”
“Fine, just fine.” Wyatt twiddled with the stem of the glass, looking away from Lukas. Somehow he knew that wouldn’t fly.
“So, let me guess. If it’s not your work, then it’s a man that’s troubling you?”
Damn, Lukas knew him too well, didn’t he?
“You going to tell me or make me play Twenty Questions?”
Wyatt looked up. Of course he wanted to talk, but somehow the words weren’t coming.
“What do you know of that guy across the street?” he blurted out.
Lukas paused, glass halfway to his lips; his eyes narrowed slightly. “Since the Talbots aren’t there, I assume you’re talking about Randy Grant?”
Wyatt nodded again.
Lukas stared for another moment, his eyes piercing and far too intuitive for Wyatt’s own good. “Oh shit,” he mumbled, draining the glass and reaching for the bottle. “Wyatt, what have you done?”
Wyatt frowned. “I haven’t done anything, what do you mean?”
“When I suggested you watch John’s house, I didn’t think you’d run out and try to make friends with the neighbors. What have you been doing?”
“I met them. That’s all,” Wyatt replied defensively.
“Them? Oh double shit.”
Wyatt felt a flush rise up his cheeks. He hid his discomfort by drinking more of the cheap wine; the taste was growing on him, as its warmth stole through his veins.
“If I thought for even one minute you’d want anything to do with Grant—”
“I don’t want anything to do with him,” Wyatt interrupted.
“That’s what I was afraid of.” Lukas groaned. “I told myself that Randy’d never be your cup of tea. Shylor, on the other hand...”
“What is their relationship, Lukas? Do you know? You sound like you know them, right?” Wyatt didn’t realize he clutched the glass too tightly, until Lukas peeled it from his fingers and set it down on the table.
“I know too much,” he sighed. “Yes, I know them. I’ve known them for years. I remember when Randy first moved in. That must be twenty years ago, something like that.”
“Is he a friend?”
Lukas snorted. “Hardly. His best friend is himself.”
“So you’ve known Shy for a long time too?”
Lukas groaned again. “Shy, is it? And just how did you become acquainted with him? I bet that couldn’t have been easy.”
“Well, I saw him washing the car one day, and I just walked across the street and said hello.”
“I bet Randy just loved that.”
Wyatt noticed Lukas never asked if Randy knew, as if that was a given. “Not really.”
“Not surprised.” He inched forward on the sofa, looked earnestly into Wyatt’s eyes. “Is he the reason you called me?”
“Yeah.” Wyatt licked his suddenly dry lips, visions of Shy filling his head. His heart ached inexplicably, and he attempted to drown it, pouring more of the cut rate brew.
“Wyatt,” Lukas began slowly, as if measuring his words carefully. “You have no idea what’s going on there, and I don’t think you want to know.”
“Yes, I do,” Wyatt whispered. “Please, Lukas.”
A long moment of silence. Lukas sighed. “Very well.”
to be continued
Now go visit the other Briefers and give them a warm hello!