The sex wasn’t bad. There simply was none. And no desire for any either, according to Sebastian. But there was desire thought Rick, looking down at his erection. Especially when Sebastian was gone. Like now. Sebastian had just left for bingo and the second he shut the door Rick’s body came to life. Rick was not ungrateful for the expensive gifts and nice clothes he was given, but oh how he ached to get under a man his own age.
Rick was barely twenty-one and Sebastian was turning eighty-three this July. They had been together two years now, and the age difference was really starting to show. Sometimes he felt like Sebastian’s cat, locked up in the house all day, yearning to escape. But no. He had his plan and he was sticking to it. Rick had to marry Sebastian. And he didn’t mind waiting a few sexless years for the laws to change. They would marry, Sebastian would die, and Rick would inherit everything. He looked at himself in the mirror and smiled at the idea of being a young millionaire. Thinking about all the hot young guys that would throw themselves at his feet gave him another hard on. He sighed and looked out of his bedroom window thinking about his promising future.
Eight years went by. Gay marriage was still illegal and Sebastian was barely alive. Half paralyzed in his wheelchair and hooked up to a respirator most of the time, he was not much company for Rick. Rick was beginning to worry. He had met Sebastian right out of high school and had decided not to pursue his education. Maybe that had been a mistake. He was now twenty-nine and had let himself go more than he wanted to admit. He had stopped exercising, he drank obscene amounts of alcohol every day and he ate his food and most of Sebastian’s as well. His body was not what it once had been. Sebastian didn’t say anything about Rick’s increasing waistline, but then again, Sebastian didn’t really say much at all. Watching Sebastian slip into oblivion was hard for Rick. He did not want him to die after all.
When Sebastian died a few months later, his house was turned over to the state, and most of his money went to his only nephew. The little money he had left for Rick in his will was barely enough for Rick to rent a studio apartment. He still had his designer clothes and a few nice things, but it was hard for Rick to adjust to his new lifestyle. Rick was not bitter, but he was alone. He missed the sounds of Sebastian struggling to breathe in bed beside him. He thought about how much he had changed. He no longer ached for hot young men, only a companion he could grow old with.
Rick got a job as a janitor in a nearby hospital. He stopped drinking, and due to the physical nature of his job, Rick lost weight almost immediately. He felt good. He was comforted by the smells and complaints of old people — they reminded him of his last years with Sebastian. His hard work and his ease around the older patients did not go unnoticed. He was offered a job as a paid volunteer at the hospital. He would often read to patients, take them for walks, and even feed them. It was in his second year as a volunteer that Rick met Harold, the love of his life. Harold was a respiratory therapist and one year younger than Rick. Having sex with Harold was the most amazing thing that Rick had ever experienced. The desire he felt as a young man returned yet now he wanted Harold and only Harold all of the time.
One year after they met, they bought a house together. That same year, gay marriage was legalized. Rick proposed one day at work over a comatose patient at the hospital. Harold, in tears, said yes. Rick was happier than he had ever imagined possible. As the years passed, Rick fell more and more in love with Harold. When Rick complained of pain due to his severe arthritis, Harold would massage him until the pain went away. They laughed together at Harold’s incontinence. They were aging together. Shortly after their fiftieth anniversary, Rick died sitting next to Harold on their couch. Harold died a month later.
8 thoughts on “Finding Harold”
Sweet ending with a life’s lesson learned.
Great work, but very sad, think “humor and fun” may have been a mis-tagging! You put out some great work, so I’ve added you to my blogroll.
I like the twist.
Wonderful again. Your stories always send me into a day or two of thinking about something unexpected. Today, it’s love, of course. Thank you.
… long as you *keep your mind open …
Awesome story – very clever twist. Mind if I ask what you saw/read/whatever that sparked the first idea for this story?
Thank you. I was inspired by all the stories of the really young, gold digging, Anna Nicole Smith types ending up with really old men. I chose for them to be a gay couple because that brought in the drama of not being able to get married. I thought it would be interesting to go a little deeper into that type of relationship. How the young person is affected by not only not inheriting the money, but by the loss of the person he had been spending so much time with.
Yeah I liked the unexpected lesson learned part … you know, go in for superficial reasons but as long as you can your mind open you can learn something.
Thanks for the answer!