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In and Out

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Title: If I’d Never Met You 

Author/pseudonym: Tinnean 

Fandom: In and Out 

Pairing: Howard Brackett/Peter Malloy 

Rating: NC-17 

Disclaimer: They belong to Paramount and Paul Rudnick. I just take them out for a brisk canter and then rub them down and put them nicely away. 

Status: new/complete 

Date: 7/01 

Series/Sequel: All right, listen up: this is becoming ridiculous, so I am hereby naming this series. Henceforth, it shall be known as the… Out of the Closet series. Yeah, that’s the ticket! And this is part…um…6! Yeah, 6! I knew that!  

Summary: Peter is invited to the Bracketts’ for dinner. 

Warnings: m/m, spoilers for the movie 

Notes: As always, this is for Silk and Gail. 

If I’d Never Met You

Part 1/1 

It would go down in the annals of Greenleaf High as one of the most eventful graduations on record. The entire town of Greenleaf, Indiana, for at least the length of the ceremony, had come out of the closet and announced its gaydom. 

Taking a prominent part in the festivities was Cameron Drake, Hollywood’s most recent golden boy. And the entire thing had been captured on film by Peter Malloy, reporter for Inside Entertainment. 

But now, the diplomas had been handed out, tassels had been repositioned, and the class was officially part of posterity. The graduates were drifting into their usual cliques, for one last blast before their parents rounded them up and proudly displayed them to all their relatives. They would have a final, carefree summer together, and then they would separate, going on to college, or work, or the military. 

They would vow eternal friendship, or devotion, and for some that might even be true. But most would move on, as Cameron Drake had, and only return to their hometown for the usual cause of family reunions: funerals or…weddings. 


“Cameron! Cameron Drake!” 

I watched in amusement as Peter Malloy hailed the young actor. As usual, Bud Conway, his cameraman, was right there, the camcorder at his eye like some alien life form that had attached itself to his face. I stood to the side and watched my lover work. 

“Peter! Good to see you again! I’m surprised to see you’re still here, though!” 

Peter was flattered that Cam remembered him, but I could have told him that appearances to the contrary, the boy could use his mind, when he chose to. It was important to his career to remember those who had interviewed him. 

“I’m still here because this story means a great deal to me, Cameron. I care!” 

“This is true,” I couldn’t help interjecting. “He’s been here a whole week!” 

Cam grinned. “Really?” 

“As opposed to those other reporters who were only here for a few days!” Peter’s tone was injured, but he spoiled the effect by smiling lasciviously at me. 

“Ummm. Well, it’s really nice to see you again, Mr. Brackett.” The actor extended his hand to shake mine. 

“I’m glad to see you too, Cameron.”

“If I could interrupt this old home week? I do have a job to do!” Peter taped his mike restlessly against his palm. 

“Sure, Peter. What would you like to know?” 

And immediately, he was in his professional mode. The questions, for once, weren’t the innocuous pap prime time viewers seemed to thrive on. “Why did you show up here in Greenleaf, Cameron? Were you trying to make amends for the disarray you cast your former English teacher’s life into? And how do you feel about Mr. Brackett losing his job as a result of your Oscar night statement?” 

Cam rambled and mumbled, and I had to listen in awe to his answers. “And finally I said to Sonya, we have to do something. We can’t just think about our careers and our hair!” 

I cocked an eyebrow at Peter, and he leaned close enough to whisper, “Editing, the marvel of the modern age!”  I choked on the laughter he surprised out of me. 

“Cameron, thanks so much for your thoughtful comments.” Peter’s tongue was firmly in his cheek. “One last question before I let you go? What next?” 

Cam’s eyes grew vague. “Next? Well, I’ve been getting a lot of offers, but they’re all for gay guys, you know? I don’t want to typecast myself. My agent is carefully fielding all the scripts that are coming in. Until I hear from her, I’ll be taking a short vacation, here in Greenleaf.” 

“And there you have it, folks. A major star who’s not too big to return to his roots!” Peter made a slicing motion, and Bud lowered his camera, grinning in relief. 

“We done for the day, boss? Then I’m heading to the tavern for a tall, cool one! And maybe a beer, as well!” 

“Sure thing, Bud. Good job!” Peter tossed him a salute. 

The cameraman grinned and stowed his equipment in the back of the rental car, then sauntered away with a jaunty whistle. 

Peter turned back to the actor. “Thanks a lot, Cameron. I really do appreciate the interview. It’s all about ratings, you know.” 

“Yeah, I know. Uh, Mr. Brackett, before you leave, I just want to thank you.” 

“Why, Cameron? Aside from not breaking your nose for getting me into such a jam?” 

“Yeah, there was that, wasn’t there? Well, I just want to thank you for not marrying Miss Montgomery. Emily.” He was actually blushing. 

Peter paused, holding open the passenger door for me to get into his car. “Cameron, where is Sonya?” The actor and the supermodel had been an item for quite some time by Hollywood standards. Almost four months! 

“Oh, I saw her a little while ago outside the auditorium. She broke up with me.” He shrugged. “She didn’t like when I told her she looked like a swizzle stick and she should eat something. It isn’t healthy to be that thin, you know?” He suddenly looked uncomfortable. “That’s off the record, Peter!” 

Peter nodded, what had to be a smirk curling his lips. 

Relief filled the actor’s face, and he nodded in turn. “Now Miss Montgomery, Emily, she’s perfect. She was even more perfect before she lost that weight, but…” He sighed. “Gotta go, Mr. Brackett. I’m taking Miss Montgomery, Emily, to lunch!” With a happy wave, Cameron Drake hurried off down the sidewalk. 

Peter was watching me carefully. “Are you all right with that, Howard?” 

“It has a certain…symmetry to it. They quoted Romeo and Juliet to each other when she was a student teacher, you know. I rather thought she was fonder of him than she ever let on. Ah, well, such is life. At least she’ll have something to take her mind off all the times I made her watch Funny Lady.” 

“It was a sequel, Howard. She was under contract!” 

“You heard me tell her that at the church!” 

Peter grinned, and I caught my breath. “Yes,” he admitted. “But it’s still true!” His eyes grew sultry. “Want a lift, sailor?” 

I couldn’t take my eyes off his lips. I took a step toward him, and then… 

“Howard, sweetheart, I’m making pot roast for dinner. I’ll expect you at five sharp!” 

“Hi, Mom. All right.” 

“Oh, and bring your buddy. There’s always plenty!” 

I opened my mouth to tell her that wouldn’t be a good idea, but Peter jumped in before I could say a word. “Thank you very much, Mrs. Brackett. I’d love to join you!” 

“Wonderful! Bye, boys!” 

“Bye, um, Mom. Dad.” 

Dad just waved. “Don’t be late, or she’ll send me out after you!” They drove off in the family station wagon, and I turned on Peter. 

“Oh, that was really smart! You have no idea what my mother is like! The woman is diabolical! If she finds out that you’re more than just my buddy…” 

He had the gall to look hurt. “Are you ashamed of me, Howard?” 

We were toe to toe, and I leaned into his personal space. “Peter, let me put it to you this way: do the musical notes dum dum dadum ring a bell?” 

“Wedding bells?” His eyes grew wide. 

“Ah, the light dawns! She’s been cheated out of one wedding already. Do me a favor, Peter. Don’t give her any ideas!”

”Howard, I’ve never seen you like this!” 

I growled at him and got into the car. “Drop me off at my house, would you? I need to change.” 

“Oh no! You’re perfect just the way you are, babe!” 


I was becoming more and more frantic, trying to find clothes that would be casual enough for dinner with my folks, but not too casual. I didn’t want Peter to think I was a slob. 

“Howard.” He was right behind me and I jumped. He turned me to face him, and tipped up my chin. “Take off your jacket.” He helped me slide out of it. “I really like the color of this shirt. Light sky-blue? It goes so well with this suit. Now, take off your tie. Mrs. Lester is right: you do have perfect taste!” 

My hands went to the knot at my throat, and I tugged it loose. I would have hung it up, but Peter took it from my fingers and tossed it over his shoulder. “Hey!” 

He twined his fingers in mine and pushed me back against the wall, covering my body with his. I groaned as I felt him thrust his arousal lazily against my groin, and I spread my legs, making a space for him. 

“I want you, Howard.” 

I started to protest. 

“Don’t say no! We’ve got plenty of time. Make love with me!” He teased my lips opened and licked at my tongue, inviting it to come out and play in his mouth. Hesitantly, I let my tongue glide forward, tasting the peppermint he had been sucking on. “Come on, Howard. Fuck my mouth! You know you want to!” 

My hands were imprisoned by his, so I couldn’t move his head the way I wanted it. I angled my mouth instead, and began a duel with his tongue, the rhythm matching the one his lower body had established. 

The feelings became too strong, and I tore my mouth free. “Pete..Peter! I’m going to come!” 

“Not yet, babe!” He undid my trousers in record time and they slid, unlamented, to the floor. My cock sprang free, slick with precome. Peter released my hands and dropped to his knees. He blew softly, and I shuddered, feeling my balls tighten. 

And then the wet heat of his mouth was surrounding me, and my hips bucked, my orgasm hitting me like a runaway train. No one, before Peter, had ever made me feel so good. 

He swallowed one last time and let my flaccid cock slip out of his mouth. I sank down onto the floor beside him, dazed. A drop of my come clung to the corner of his mouth, and I leaned forward and licked it off. 

Peter groaned. “You pick the damnedest times to get uninhibited!” He parted his lips, inviting me to taste myself on him. But it was our combined taste that was driving me wild. 

When he ordered me to roll over, I didn’t even stop to question him. He positioned me on my knees and pressed gently on my shoulders. I got comfortable and waited for his next move. 

Cool lubricant was rubbed over and around my hole, a finger dipping in deeper and deeper with each passing stroke. “No olive oil?” I teased, and then gasped as he eased two fingers into my passage. 

“It’s better with the lube, babe. And I’m going to make sure I always have some on me!” He withdrew his fingers, and then the broad head of his cock began pressing for admittance. The muscle relaxed, and he slid in so deeply that he sparked my prostate immediately. “And every time you look at me, you’ll know that in my pocket, I’m carrying this tube and a bunch of condoms.” 

“A bunch? All the time?” I didn’t know where I found the ability to string together a coherent sentence. He had pulled almost all the way out, and then shoved back in, his balls slapping against mine. 

He reached around and took my cock in his hand. Each time he hit my hot spot, I wanted to beg for more. He jerked me in time to his thrusts. “Oh, yeah, babe. And no matter where we are, you’re going to look at me and know what I’ve got for you. And when we drive home from your folks’ tonight, you’re going to show me where the lover’s lane is.” 

“I am?” Unbelievably, I was on the verge of coming again. 

“Oh…yes! And…I’m going to…strip off your…pants…and fuck you …raw!” And with a shout, he began to come, pounding into me so hard that I lost my balance and collapsed under him. 

I could feel his cock quivering in my ass, and I ground myself shamelessly back against him. He rolled to his side, one hand on my abdomen keeping him firmly seated within me, the other working my arousal, and with two more jerks I was filling his hands with my hot semen. 

And we fell asleep, there on the floor. 


Something warm and damp was tickling my neck. And then teeth sank into the flesh just below my collar and lips began suckling the indentations. I moaned and arched into it, loving the way that spot seemed to be directly connected to my cock. 

Drowsily, I opened my eyes to find Peter leaning over me. “Hey!” I said softly. 

“Hey, yourself!” he smiled. “Come on. We’ve got to get a shower and then hit the road. We don’t want to be late, do we?”

”Let’s see. What are my options here? Dinner with my folks. Or you in my bed? Not a hard choice, babe.”

He groaned. “Come on, Howard, you’re not making this easy for me. I want your Mom and Dad to like me!” 

“Would you say I’m making this… hard… for you?” 

“You’re evil, you know that, babe?” 

“So?” I shrugged, making sure the motion brought me into close contact with my lover. 

I found myself flat on my back with Peter looming over me. He leaned down and licked the whole side of my neck, and I shuddered. “So…I’m going to take a shower. It wouldn’t do to arrive at your parents’ with your scent all over me. Much as I would love it, under ordinary circumstances!” 

“Spoilsport!” I followed him into the bathroom and, strictly for the sake of efficiency, we showered together. 

He went back into the bedroom, absently toweling himself dry. “My trousers are a little wrinkled!” he called. 

“There’s a travel iron in the closet. Use it!” The mirror was all fogged up, and I rubbed it to clear a spot. Something was on my neck, and I ran my fingers over it, only then realizing it was a deep vermilion love bite. “Peter Malloy! Look what you’ve done to me!” 

I stormed into the bedroom to confront him. He tilted my head to the side to get a better view. “Looks good on you, babe. And no one’s going to see it!” 

“But…but…but… I’ll know it’s there!” 

He kissed me. “That’s the point! Let’s get going. We don’t want to be late.” 


The scents wafting out from the house were mouth-watering. I led Peter into the dining room. He took my Mom’s hands and drew her close to him, placing a kiss on her cheek. She smiled and patted his cheek. “Everything is going to get cold! Let’s eat. Peter, you sit next to Howard.” 

I gave her a look, but she pretended not to see it. Dad carved thick slices of pot roast, and Mom passed the mashed potatoes and the spring peas. Peter took a polite helping of each, but declined the gravy. Always being before the unforgiving eye of the TV camera, he had to watch his weight at all times. 

Mom watched Peter from under her lashes, and I held my breath. He took a bite, and his jaws froze in mid-chew. And then he moaned. And took another bite. And reached for the gravy and more of everything. 

Mom sat back with a satisfied smile on her face. 

“Walter’s not having dinner with us, Mom?” 

“No, dear. He has a date!” She looked as surprised to be saying that as I was to be hearing it. 

“The boy has hidden depths. I’ve always thought so!” Dad said around a mouthful of potatoes. 

Mom just gave him a look and turned back to Peter. “More pot roast, Mr. Malloy?” 

“Peter, please! And no, as much as I would love to, if I take another bite, I’ll explode!” 

If I had ever said anything like that at the table, Mom would have nailed me with one of those frowns, and there would have been no dessert for me. Speaking of which... "What's for dessert, Mom?" 

“Blueberry pie a la mode, with real whipped cream. None of that stuff in a can!” She beamed at Peter. 

He sighed. “Now I’m glad I didn’t have any more dinner! Mrs. Brackett, would you run away and marry me?” 

I prodded him in the side, trying to remind him of my warning. Mentioning marriage around my mother at this point in time was like waving a red flag in front of a bull! 

She surprised me, though. She blushed, and fussed with her apron and cast a coy smile at my Dad. What was going on? 

Dad cleared his throat. “I’m afraid you’re too late, young man. Bernice has agreed to marry me.” 

“Dad, is there something you and Mom never told us all these years?” 

He cuffed me gently, then got up to walk to Mom’s end of the table. 

She looked up at him, the love that had seen them through all the good times and bad shining in her eyes. He folded her hand in his and raised it to his mouth. 

“We’ve been married for forty-two years. When I got out of the army, I had enough money to put a down payment on this farm. We got married in front of the minister, but we couldn’t afford a big wedding. This time, we can. We’ve got all the decorations left over from your wedding, Howard. Sorry,” he murmured as I flinched. “Your mother deserves something special. Tonight, before you boys arrived, I asked her to spend the next forty-two years with me.” 

Below the tablecloth, Peter’s hand gripped mine. 

“And I said yes!”


On to Mama Gets Married

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