This was part of a cut scene that would have come in the middle of Chapter 7 Love, Money, or Sex in Just Like Honey, Ryan’s insomnia in Marcus’s guest bed. Most the scene was cannibalized into other parts of the book but this never made it anywhere. Ryan remembers their first threesome. Very slightly spoilery for chapter 6.
Five months in and Luke changed everything for both of them. Closing his eyes Ryan replayed how it all started. They’d gone to The Eagle, on a cold January night, more to satisfy Ben’s curiosity about the old bar then anything else.
“I can’t tell if you’re both checking me out and fighting over me, or if something else is going on.”
“We’re together.” Ryan put a proprietary hand on Ben’s shoulder.
Luke looked them both up and down, appraising. “I’m down for a threesome if you are.”
Ben caught Ryan’s eye. They’d discussed it but never found the right moment to seek a third.
“I can give you a second to discuss it.” He moved down the bar, raising his hand to flag the bartender.
Even now Ryan wondered if they’d have ever formally opened their relationship if that first experience wasn’t so positive and powerful. They both been high and tipsy, not a state to be making relationship changing decisions in, but luck had been with them.
“Have either of you ever had a threesome before?”
They all sat awkwardly on the couch, drinking beer. They’d brought him home with clear intention, but once there good manners and no idea how to begin slowed the momentum.
“Yes, but not in relationship.” Tension lingered around Ben’s smile.
“No.” Ryan’s own smile felt too loose and eager.
Luke grinned wolfishly. “Okay, well maybe kiss each other so I can see what you’re like. I promise this will be good.”
The negotiations came later, the rules for navigating how to fuck other people. Their friends teased them about moving in together after three months like U-haul lesbians, at the time it seemed practical since Ryan and Adrian had been searching for another roommate. That they got along so well sealed Ryan’s certainty that moving in together was the right choice. With Ben sex wasn’t complicated, the only power games were played intentionally for fun. Not one for superstition or spiritual bullshit, but in Ryan’s more exposed moments, alone with Ben, he assumed predestination.
Until they fought for the first time. Every fight since then, though they were rare, maybe five in two years, felt like they might tear them apart completely. Some residual intensity was expressed improperly and seared until it hurt them both.
Even when they fought jealousy didn’t exist for them. Keenly aware of the difference between fucking someone else and being interested someone else, neither of them ever crossed that line.
Ryan flipped over and beat his pillow into submission ready for another sleepless night. He could get dressed and walk home right now. Maybe be there in thirty minutes, just cut around behind Lakeview cemetery, take Federal Avenue to Roy Street, then down the hill.
Ben wouldn’t question Ryan coming in at 1 am, would cuddle him into bed, comfort him like Ryan had been away for months.
But Ryan didn’t do it. The fight wasn’t over.