To Market, To Market By Juli December 2000
Gaydar was a myth.
At least, detective Steve Sloan reflected, the mysterious ability to sense when another man was gay was totally bogus -- as far as homosexual men were concerned. Women, on the other hand, had it in spades.
Take his lover, for example.
Steve knew for a fact, that Jesse Travis had only enjoyed minimal luck with the ladies before accepting the older man as his lover. Watching the young man crash and burn had been a painful experience, even for someone who was merely watching instead of experiencing the rejection. But now... now that the young man was involved in a same sex relationship, he drew the women to him like bees to honey.
Speaking of honey, the young woman currently scoping out his companion was a case in point. The two men had reluctantly concluded that a trip to the grocery store was in order, a chore both of them hated. Sure enough, they hadn't even made it to the produce section before the stray wheel on the grocery cart started driving Steve nuts. The older man had taken the cart back for another one, sending Jesse ahead to get started... and came back to find some strange female practically cooing at his mate.
"I just love cantaloupe," the curly-haired brunette said, leaning over in order to show off her chest, "It's wonderful for breakfast."
Steve watched while Jesse shifted from one foot to another, the young man's eyes darting everywhere but to the stranger's ample bosom. "Ummm..." he gulped, "I wouldn't know about that..."
"Oh," she purred, "You should try it sometime. It's especially scrumptious after you've had a... workout... the night before."
Immediately, a wave a protective jealousy came over the cop and he swooped in for the rescue before his lover could say anything.
"He's not really into... melons," the detective said, pointedly glaring at the woman's cleavage. One arm went around Jesse's waist and he pulled the young doctor close. "I think it's safe to say that Jesse's more interested in bananas. Isn't that right, Jess?"
"Yeah, right. Bananas." The smaller man looked torn between relief at Steve's timely intervention and extreme embarrassment.
"Bananas?" The woman asked, not quite sure she was getting the right message.
Steve's hand moved from the small of Jesse's back to stroke his lover's hip in a proprietary manner. "That's right, bananas. Big, ripe ones."
"Oh." There was no way she could miss that clue and the disappointed woman turned and walked away without another word.
Jesse watched her go, cheeks flaming. "Steve!"
His partner gave him a big-eyed look of innocence. "What?"
"Jeez, like that was subtle!"
"I wasn't interested in subtly, Jess," Steve was unrepentant. "I just wanted her to stop shoving her boobs in your face." With a smug look, the big man pushed the cart over towards the other aisle. "It worked too."
Jesse trailed behind his lover, eyes narrowed as he thought fast. Steve thought embarrassing him, even in front of that vapid female, was funny, huh? Well, two could play at that game.
Detective Sloan was picking through a mound of oranges, trying to find some that weren't too bruised, when he heard Jesse's voice ask a question.
"Hey, Steve, do you know what I see?"
"What, Jess?" he asked, distracted by his search and not bothering to turn around.
"Well," came the cheerful and loud reply. "They're round and firm and definitely hairy. And I hear there's this sweet, white, sticky fluid inside..."
Choking, the older man turned around to find his lover holding two coconuts aloft. Jesse laughed at Steve's expression and put them down, radiating innocence as he walked towards him. "What?"
"You..." Steve growled.
"Not subtle enough for you?" Jesse asked, "How about this," he picked up a small, red fruit. "These are so plump, when you bite into one, you can almost hear the cherry pop..."
The cop rolled his eyes. "Come on, I can see we've lingered here long enough."
Grabbing Jesse's wrist, he propelled his still-chuckling lover over to the vegetables. Once there, they separated into their established chores, Steve grabbing a bag of potatoes while the doctor looked for the salad ingredients.
Seeing his mate frowning over the leafy vegetables, Steve couldn't resist getting a little payback. Sneaking up behind his lover as the younger man pawed through the heads of lettuce, he whispered in his ear. "I always did tell you that you were good at head, baby."
Jesse groaned, half in protest at the other man's pun and half at the way the nearly purred statement went straight to his groin. "You are so bad, Steve."
"Ain't that the truth."
The two men moved out of the produce aisle and into the main part of the grocery store, their game nearly forgotten until they reached the condiment section. The detective watched as the smaller man placed a bottle into their cart and couldn't resist a comment.
"You don't need the extra virgin," the older man said, referring to the olive oil. "At least, not anymore."
Jesse flushed, as his lover had hoped. The comment brought back memories of their first time together, when the doctor had lost his male to male virginity to Steve's skillful lovemaking. "Yeah, I know," he said softly, "thanks to you."
Ducking his head shyly, Jesse turned back to their shopping, determined to get this chore over with so he could remind Steve just how much he appreciated his de-flowering. That determination nearly got them through the rest of the trip without incident. Until, that is, they reached the paper aisle.
It was watching Steve pick out, of all things, toilet paper that was the young man's undoing.
Jesse watched as his companion frowned at the generic variety, poking and squeezing at it in detective-like fashion. Obviously, the cop was trying to use the keen observation techniques used in his police work to try and logically determine if the cheaper toilet paper really was as soft as the more well-known brands. It was anal and endearing and simply too irresistible to be ignored.
Walking quietly up to his lover from behind, Jesse took an ample handful of Steve's ass... and pinched.
"Please don't squeeze the Charmin," he said in a hoarse stage-whisper.
"Jess!" Steve squeaked, dropping the toilet paper in surprise. By the time he turned around to confront his lover, it was Jesse's turn to be smug.
"Gotcha," the younger man said, arms crossed over his chest as he watched his flummoxed companion with glee.
"Just wait until I get you home, young man," Steve growled as he grabbed Jesse's wrist and started to forcefully lead his lover from the store.
"But, Steve, our groceries..."
The cop came to a complete halt, pulling Jesse close so they were standing eye to eye. "They can just stay here," he said.
"We're going home," Steve reiterated, "And then we'll see who's Charmin gets squeezed... and by whom." Jesse slowly grinned, as he realized that Steve's intensity came from lust and not from anger.
And by the time the couple exited the store, it was the doctor tugging on the older man's hand, encouraging him to hurry.
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