Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Wednesday Briefs: Moving Forward #44 (10.3)

Good morning and happy Hump Day! If it's Wednesday, then it must be time for some flash fiction from the Wednesday Briefers. We're a group of authors who bring you our finest flash fiction every Wednesday, from 500 to 1000 words, inspired by one of our prompts.

Marshall runs into Dustin unexpectedly in this week's episode of Moving Forward. Will this end badly for one of them? Find out! Don't forget to see what the other Briefers are up to. Their links follow my tale. Enjoy!

Moving Forward #44 (10.3)

A moment of silence passed as they stood there, staring at each other. Marshall broke the standoff first, but as he attempted to go around Dustin, the other man stepped into his path.

“Marshall, wait a minute…”

“What do you want, Dustin?” Marshall asked warily. It wasn’t in his nature to be deliberately rude—Lee had raised him better than that—but these were extenuating circumstances. He knew Lee would understand.

Actually, if Lee had any inkling Dustin was here with Marshall, he’d come down so fast it would make Dustin’s head spin.

“Just wanted to make sure you’re okay.” His gaze raked up and down Marshall, but not in a predatory way. He seemed to be concerned, although why that might be, Marshall had no clue. And he didn’t really care. He just wanted to be left alone.

“Well, you can see I’m just fine. Now if you’ll just get out of my way.” Marshall arched a brow at him when Dustin didn’t move. “Haven’t you caused enough trouble? You looking for more? You’re just lucky Lee doesn’t know you’re here, but if you don’t let me leave, he’ll find out, trust me, and I don’t think you want that, do you?”

“God no.” Dustin groaned. “I already know he hates me, and I figure you do too. I was just worried about you, that’s all. Believe me or not, whatever you like.” He stepped away from Marshall and leaned against the wall, eyes focused on the floor. “Go on, then. Run back to Lee.”

Marshall was more than ready to get away from Dustin, but something about the other man’s tone of voice, the look of despair on his face, drew him back. He hesitated in the doorway, glancing back at Dustin.

“Is something wrong?” he asked. “What’s going on?”

“Did you hear about the passenger who got beat up really bad?” Dustin asked, never looking up as if something on the floor was utterly fascinating.

“Yeah, we did. Did you have something to do with that?” Marshall asked bluntly.

“I guess you could say that.” Dustin sighed, raising his eyes to meet Marshall’s. “I didn’t do it, if that’s what you’re thinking. I never touched the guy. But I know who did, and it was because of me.”

“I don’t understand. Because of you? What do you mean? Did you tell the ship’s security people who did it?”

“No, I haven’t told anyone but you. I’ve been hiding,” Dustin admitted. “I’m afraid he might try to hurt me too.”

Just then Marshall’s phone vibrated with an incoming text. It didn’t take a rocket scientist to know who that was from. He opened the phone and read the message.

You still down there?

“That him?” Dustin asked.

Marshall nodded. “Maybe you should go before he decides to come down here,” he suggested.

“I’m tired of hiding,” Dustin said wearily. “Let’s just get it over with. I didn’t do anything, not that you guys will believe me.”

Be right there, Marshall texted back, then put his phone back in his pocket.

“You should probably let Denver know what’s going on—” Marshall began, but he was interrupted by a newcomer. Marshall recognized him as the man he’d seen with Dustin on the excursion boat. The one he’d been playing kissy face with. Guess Dustin was in good hands now.

He started to step into the hallway, but the man blocked his path. He looked back at Dustin. His eyes were wide with fear.  Shit, this couldn’t be good.

“So you finally got your way, you got him to yourself,” the man said in a deceptively soft voice. “Are you happy now, Dustin?” He pushed Marshall back into the laundry area. He fell against Dustin, who braced him before he could hit the floor.

“It’s not what you think, Cody,” Dustin said.

“It’s not? Looks straightforward to me,” Cody sneered. “You wanted him, you got him.” He took a menacing step forward. Dustin quickly pulled Marshall behind him.

“Leave him alone, he has nothing to do with this. Neither did that guy you beat up. This is between us.”

“What us? You used me and told me you weren’t interested any more. I’m not stupid. I saw the way you were looking at pretty boy here when you were out with me. You’re nothing but a two-timing whore.” He lashed out, slapping Dustin on the cheek, hard. Dustin took a step backward, but Marshall returned the favor and kept him from falling.

“Hey, you have no right to hit him. Why don’t you just go the fuck away?” Marshall said belligerently.

“Protecting your sweetie? You’d like that, wouldn’t you, so you can fuck him in private, away from your Sugar Daddy. I bet he’d like to know what you’re up to behind his back. Man old enough to be your father, naturally you have a young guy on the side for extra cock. You’re both whores. And you’re both going to pay for that. Like I made that other guy pay.”

Without warning, he pushed against Dustin, knocking both him and Marshall off their feet.

to be continued

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