"Why aren't you up yet? The flight couldn't have been that long." Brian barged in to see Noah still dozing on the bed. The young man woke with a start, disoriented for a few nano seconds before realizing where he was. The melancholy look he'd been sporting returned once he realized his location. Somehow he was hoping it was all a dream...he was wrong.
"I'm sorry," Noah realized he'd been saying that word a lot: sorry, "I won't take long. I promise." He shot out of bed quickly and turned in circles trying to find the bathroom before looking to Brian who was pointing to his left.
7 o'clock found Noah sitting at the head of a table, wearing a crisp white shirt and black dress pants, and surrounded by people he didn't know. Apparently Brian thought it brilliant to invite a few of the town's (Oakdale, was it?) to dinner and meet his new spouse. But Noah wasn't good with crowds or people really for that matter. Especially people, who expected him to charm them, engage them; know the difference between a salad fork and a dinner fork.
Honestly, what was so barbaric about one fork? Oh wait, she's saying something. Noah was jarred from his thoughts by the woman speaking to him. Lisa...something or other, he couldn't remember. She laughed, Noah wasn't sure what she was talking about, so he laughed too. It's going to be a long night.
He wasn't wrong. The Who's Who of Oakdale loved to talk. About what? Noah wasn't sure. He just smiled and nodded; trying ever so hard not to let the bile that was rising in his throat from Brian's hand on his waist come barreling out.
He needed air. A big, heaping, helpful of it. He had managed to sneak out under the pretense of going to the bathroom once Brian surrendered control of his waist.
"Let me guess. One more minute in there and your head would explode?" What a sweet voice. Noah turned to see the owner of the voice that read his feelings so clearly and suddenly there wasn't enough air out there. He looked into the most beautiful brown eyes he'd ever seen. Light brown. His favorite kind of brown actually with flecks of green in them. So inviting and full of spark.
"Helloooo. Hey you up there?" Noah saw the blur of hand waving in front of his face and realized he hadn't spoken in about a minute.
"I...uh...sorry," there was that word again, "Yeah...air...needed..yeah." Could he be a bigger idiot.
"You like air?" Apparently he could. The blond laughed. He was blond. Noah started to notice other features now. The sandy blonde hair, he was slightly shorter than him, and had beautifully kissable lips and a laugh that was infectious.
"Yea I love air. Keeps the old ticker a-tickin'," Brown Eyes said as he touched his chest, "I'm Luke. Snyder, by the way." He held out his hand for Noah to shake.
"Hi. I'm-" he touched Luke's fingers and felt electricity.
"Noah! I've been looking everywhere for you. This isn't the bathroom," Brian interrupted them. His hatred for that man only grew in that moment, "Mr. Snyder. What a surprise seeing you here. Have you met my husband? This is Noah." Brian took a hold of Noah's waist again and he tried not to shudder.
"Yes. We kind of just met. Hi, Noah. I'm just here on behalf of my Dad. He finished drawing up those papers for the horses and wanted me to bring them over to you as soon as possible to look over. Here you are," Luke handed Brian the papers, "I'll leave you to your guests. It was nice meeting you Noah." Luke smiled and turned to leave, but not before glancing once more at Noah.
"Come on. Let's go back inside." Noah was led away. Ugh. Back to the gulag .