Aaron stared spellbound at the cream swirling in his coffee as he waited for the big man. He wasn’t even sure why he had agreed to the assistant’s offer of coffee, since he never drank the stuff, but his nerves were on edge. Gavin Scott was notorious for instilling fear in those who worked for him, with a reputation for going psycho when the slightest thing did not go his way, so Aaron was naturally in suspense about why he had been called to meet Gavin. Maybe this was all a mistake. Maybe they’d called the wrong man.
Aaron looked out the windows at the skyline, never having been this high in the building before. Only when you had reached the pinnacle of success like Gavin Scott could you earn a view like this. As a low-level drone in the accounting department, Aaron had done little to attract unwanted attention during his three years at Scott Global, headquartered in San Francisco’s Transamerica Pyramid. He hadn’t even attracted much wanted attention, as in three years, he hadn’t found one person he considered a friend, let along found a woman to date. He just came in every day, did his number-crunching in his windowless office, then headed back home on a BART train to his lonely apartment in the East Bay.
He figured he could probably improve his status if he paid a little more attention to his outward appearance, but his salary was largely eaten up by his rent, his carb-heavy diet had evolved little since his college days, and the only exercise he got was walking to and from the BART station. His five-foot-seven frame was lugging around enough blubber that his scale regularly crept over 200. Although his acne had cleared for the most part by freshman year of college, he still managed to get a sizable zit at least once a month, usually in the most noticeable place possible. Today, one rode just to the left of the tip of his nose. He only got his limp turd-brown hair cut every few months, when if finally hung down far enough to obstruct the view through his horn-rimmed glasses, and he couldn’t recall the last time he entered a clothing store for anything besides socks and underwear.
Mr. Scott’s assistant, a severe older woman in a gray pants suit, opened the door and announced that Mr. Scott was ready to see Aaron now. Aaron jumped reflexively when he heard his name called, spilling coffee onto his hand and pantleg. Embarrassed, he handed the full coffee cup to the assistant as he entered the inner office, wiping his wet hand on the back of his pants.
The office was decorated with exotic treasures which Mr. Scott had gathered in his decades of world travels. Aaron stepped gingerly onto the antique carpeting by the door and waited. At the far end of the room, behind a mahogany desk, a leather chair was turned to face the windows and the unmistakable scratchy baritone of Gavin Scott could be heard wrapping up a phone call. Aaron glanced at the walls where photos depicted Gavin Scott with various dignitaries of the past forty years, including Nelson Mandela, Princess Diana, Michael Jackson, Bono and every president from Nixon to Dubya. Aaron wondered why there was no photo with Obama, then noticed a gold-framed picture of the men together on a golf course. At a certain point around the Reagan administration, it started to look like the dignitaries were posing with a cardboard cutout, because for the last thirty years, Gavin Scott seemed to have stopped time. Although he had to be pushing seventy at least, he had the look of a healthy boisterous man in his late forties, with only minimal wrinkles on his tanned skin and a full head of curly black hair. Even if the hair was the result of a toupee or Rogaine, the rest seemed to be a testimonial to the high quality of medical attention that billions of dollars can buy you. If it was possible to buy your way out of dying, Aaron was sure that Gavin Scott had his lawyers working on lowering the purchase price.
“I’ll talk to you soon, Barack,” said the famed voice at the other end of the room before the leather chair spun to reveal the man himself. He consulted a sheet on his desk and asked, “You Aaron Weiskopf?”
“Yes, sir,” cracked Aaron’s voice, as if he were twelve years old in the principal’s office.
Gavin waved Aaron toward him. “Well, come here. I don’t conduct my business while shouting.” Not true, thought Aaron, as Gavin was well-known for bullying business rivals at the top of his lungs until he got what he wanted…and he always got what he wanted.
Aaron walked across the room, an office into which you could have fit about one hundred other offices the size of Aaron’s. When he reached the desk, Aaron extended a hand to shake, but Gavin kept leaning back in his chair, scrutinizing Aaron with his impenetrably dark eyes. Aaron shifted uncertainly on his feet, until Gavin finally waved a brawny hand toward a side chair and told Aaron to sit down. Aaron sat immediately, folding his arms, then stuffing them in his pockets, before resting one hand awkwardly on a knee and posing the other thoughtfully along his cheek, not so casually attempting to cover up his zit.
If Gavin was sizing up Aaron, his initial impression did not seem to be overly positive. He stroked his smooth tanned chin, then looked back at the information sheet on the desk in front of him. “Do you have any idea why I called you here?”, Gavin asked.
“I confess, I don’t.”
Aaron wracked his brain. He may not have been a lot of things, but he was a scrupulously dedicated accountant. He couldn’t imagine what he might have done wrong that merited a visit to the office of the Gavin Scott.
Gavin relaxed his intimidating demeanor and smiled. The smile was just as calculated as the scowl which had proceeded it, but Gavin was a master of manipulation who had dealt with far shrewder characters than Aaron Weiskopf. “Relax, Aaron. I have heard nothing but good things about you.”
Aaron’s lumpy shoulders relaxed. Could he be getting a promotion? If so, which position was opening up? If the only reason he was getting a promotion was that someone else was getting fired, he would feel terribly guilty about that, even though it obviously wasn’t his fault if the other person screwed up, but still…
“I’m told you’re a very dedicated employee. Someone who doesn’t let his personal life get in the way of his work for the company.”
“Very true,” said Aaron, knowing that his lack of a personal life made this scenario purely hypothetical.
Gavin looked at the paper again, as if discovering new facts. “I see here your parents have passed on?”
“Yeah.” Aaron didn’t like to dwell on that. His mother had died of lung cancer when he was two, his father of a heart attack during Aaron’s freshman year of college. The little his dad left behind had covered Aaron’s remaining years of school and a sensible used Volvo that Aaron still drove.
“No siblings?” Aaron shook his head no.
“Any close relatives? Aunts, uncles, cousins?” Again, Aaron shook his head.
“Grandparents?” Again, no.
“Girlfriend?” Aaron shook his head with embarrassment.
“Boyfriend?” Aaron shook his head vehemently.
Fuck, Aaron thought, no wonder I feel so alone in the world. I am alone in the world. But why was his boss asking about all of this?
Gavin stood and walked to the other side of his desk. He smiled again to get Aaron to relax, but there was no escaping the intimidation factor of Gavin’s physical presence. If that was a toupee, it was the most convincing one Aaron had ever seen, and if Gavin had undergone a facelift, it hadn’t made his skin look like flesh-colored Saran Wrap pulled tightly across a skull. While Aaron was unquestionably fat, Gavin carried his bulk with attitude, like an athlete still in his prime. Thick blood vessels wrapped their way up Gavin’s wide tanned neck.
Gavin asked Aaron to stand up, which Aaron did without committing any major faux pas. Gavin was about four inches taller than Aaron. Gavin nodded without saying anything, then made a quick note on a legal pad. Propping himself on one corner of the desk and crossing his arms, Gavin said, “I have an assignment I want you to do for me, Aaron. I think you are an ideal candidate for what I need. It’s not strictly work-related, but I promise that if you complete it successfully, you will richly compensated. You in?”
Aaron reminded himself of the old adage about things that sound too good to be true, but was curious. “What exactly would I need to do?”
Gavin returned to his chair and finished making notes on his legal pad. “Nothing you won’t enjoy, I promise.” He tore the sheet from the yellow pad, enclosed it in an envelope onto which he wrote a name and address, then closed the back of the envelope with hot wax and a seal for extra security.
“Take this envelope to the address on the front. The man there will take care of the rest.”
“Uh, okay. I’ll do it on my lunch break.”
“No, Aaron, you should go now. It’s just a few blocks away. Right near Chinatown.”
Once he saw the seemingly empty storefront and its dirt-streaked window, Aaron was sure he had fucked up the instructions somehow. But this was clearly the address that Gavin had written on the envelope, along with the name “Mr. Lee”. He finally tried the door and pushed.
Stepping inside, he let his eyes adjust to the dimness and eventually could see an old Asian man with a gray mustache seated behind a counter. The man’s very being exuded tranquility as he greeted Aaron. “Welcome. Please close the door.”
Aaron shut the door and walked across the wooden floor toward the counter. It was an oddly spare place, with the side walls bare except for one full-length mirror. Behind the long counter, which did not even have a cash register, were floor-to-ceiling shelves containing Chinese-labeled glass jars filled with god knows what. “Are you Mr. Lee?”
“Yes. You have something for me?” the old man asked. Aaron was still trying to piece together what exactly he had walked into, so it took him a few seconds before he remembered the envelope. He handed it to the old man, whose expression turned more serious when he saw the return address and the wax seal.
Gavin Scott was already a highly-successful real-estate investor and all-around entrepreneur in San Francisco when he had first set foot in Mr. Lee’s shop decades ago. Gavin had an embarrassing secret which no doctors, no psychiatrists, no Western medicines, and no Eastern quacks had helped him conquer. He was afraid of flying. More accurately, he was afraid of the plane falling out of the sky. He knew this was irrational. He knew the statistics. He knew the laws of aerodynamics. But he also knew that his business was requiring him to spend countless hours on planes, and the dread which each journey caused him was driving him to hypertension and fears of an early grave, just like his own father. Then one day at a bathhouse, Gavin was told in whispered tones about a man who might be able to help.
Back then, Gavin had entered Mr. Lee’s store with the same trepidations as Aaron did today. Little else had changed, including the old man. Back in the Eighties, Mr. Lee had listened to Gavin’s concerns, then set about making tea from one of the jars displayed behind him. It was like no tea that Gavin had ever tasted, reeking of lavender and old tires, but it had the effect of almost immediately soothing Gavin’s anxieties. All that Mr. Lee asked in return was that Gavin “give him” the extraordinary shining violet of his eyes. “For my collection,” Mr. Lee said. Once Mr. Lee confirmed that he did not want to take Gavin’s sight, just the color of his irises, Gavin shrugged, thinking the old man was nuts. Only when he returned home did he notice in the mirror that the color of his eyes had indeed changed. Instead of the Elizabeth Taylor purple which had brought some gaiety to his appearance, his eyes were now so dark that it seemed the pupils had overtaken the irises entirely. He got off on this change, thinking he now looked far more intimidating.
As the weeks passed, Gavin realized that he no longer had a fear of flying, or of falling, nor of anything. While he had previously been an amiable if determined businessman, he now became a fearless, ruthless negotiator, and his empire grew briskly. He eventually stopped back into Mr. Lee’s shop to offer his thanks. Mr. Lee was pleased that his services had been so beneficial to his customer.
“So what else can your weird little potions do?”, asked Gavin, waving to the jars of mystery substances.
“What do you need them to do?”
Gavin’s mind reeled. If Mr. Lee could give him a spine of steel and take away the color of his eyes, it seemed likely that he had far more tricks up the sleeves of his embroidered red robe. Although Gavin would go on to gain a reputation as one of the world’s greediest men (as well as, it must be said, a very generous philanthropist), he was not yet feeling excessively greedy that day in Mr. Lee’s shop. He might well have asked to be young and skinny, but he had already worked too hard and built too many reputations to make himself unrecognizable. Any changes he made would have to explainable in conventional terms, as the result of a surgeon’s knife, a dietician’s advice or a personal trainer’s coaching. Nevertheless, he wanted to look good for as long as possible—not for his humorless wife, with whom he rarely spoke aside from the social events they attended together, but for the young gay men that he discreetly visited on his world travels. In the end, Gavin asked if he could retain his current appearance indefinitely, regain some muscle tone and attain a permanent tan. Oh, and have a longer dick. Because, men.
Mr. Lee calmly explained that this was all possible. Gavin was astonished, and his stub of a penis stirred to life at the thought of keeping his relative youth while all of his competitors aged and croaked. Mr. Lee then asked, “And what will you give to me in return?”
Gavin should have realized that nothing comes for free. Naturally, he was willing to haggle, but just as Mr. Lee had only wanted Gavin’s eye color in exchange for taking away Gavin’s fears, he would only give Gavin these new requests if they could agree on similar swaps of Gavin’s other attributes. Now Gavin was stuck. He liked himself the way he was, and did not want to sacrifice any aspects of himself which might be giving him an advantage in his career. Gavin kept offering greater and greater sums of money, but this did not impress Mr. Lee. Could Gavin have met the last incorruptible man? Perhaps the only incorruptible man? Surely, he thought as he looked around the tiny shop, this odd old man must have something that is important to him.
Then it hit Gavin: the tiny shop itself. Mr. Lee may have low overhead, but he still needed someplace to store all of the jars which covered the entire back wall. He had to be paying rent somehow to someone, and real estate prices were not likely to go down in San Francisco. Gavin made his offer: Gavin would buy the building and guarantee that Mr. Lee could do business here for the rest of his life without ever paying a penny of rent. In exchange, Mr. Lee would promise to do any changes Gavin requested in the future for free.
This violated all of Mr. Lee’s principles. He believed his role was simply to help people live happier lives through the use of his skills. He did not want to taint the purity of his actions by bringing money into the equation. Still, operating so charitably had required him to spend much of the little money that he had. If he could get a signed irrevocable document stating that he could remain in this shop indefinitely and rent-free, that would allow him to continue to offer his services on the barter system. He stared into Gavin’s dark eyes, hoping he could trust this man not to abuse the privilege he had requested. Mr. Lee took a risk and shook Gavin’s hand.
Mr. Lee got his agreement with Gavin, which was worded so carefully that Gavin’s name never appeared in the entire document. That way, if Mr. Lee ever got involved in a dicey situation that could reflect poorly on Gavin, there was no paper trail to link them. Initially Gavin came to Mr. Lee very sparingly. As Gavin became more successful and his notoriety made him more recognizable, he would make special appointments to visit Mr. Lee late at night, entering through the rear door. His first request was simple enough: he wanted to keep his dark curls of hair, something he had neglected to suggest specifically on his last visit. Gavin respected that Mr. Lee was as big a stickler for specificity as he was. Mr. Lee told Gavin that simple hair dye would accomplish the same result, but Gavin said he didn’t just want it to be dark, he wanted it to remain dark and to never fall out. As his lack of fear had come to dominate his personality, Gavin had become increasingly impatient with anyone who dared to disagree with him. His arrangement with Mr. Lee meant that the change he asked for would be done before he left the store. Mr. Lee coated Gavin’s hair with something that looked like paprika and smelled like that pink stuff grade-school janitors sprinkled on vomit, but it clearly worked, as Gavin had retained the same hairstyle ever since, without need of a single visit to a barber. Only when Gavin asked if Mr. Lee could make him immortal did he finally go beyond the bounds of Mr. Lee’s seemingly limitless abilities.
It came as no surprise to Mr. Lee when Gavin was outed as gay in his divorce papers in the late Nineties. Over the years, Gavin had brought a number of men through the back door for midnight makeovers. At first Mr. Lee quibbled over the terms of their agreement, which Mr. Lee had assumed meant he would make unlimited changes only to Gavin himself, not to anyone and everyone whom Gavin brought to the shop. By this point, Gavin’s status in the world had grown dramatically, and Mr. Lee had no resources to fight against the likes of Gavin Scott in court. On top of that, Mr. Lee liked that his shop remained under the radar, only serving those who sought him out. That anonymity would vanish as soon as a lawsuit was filed, so Mr. Lee agreed to “touch up” the young men who Gavin brought by.
They were usually boys Gavin had observed walking the streets of the city or had noticed from his private box in one of several gay clubs which he secretly owned. It became easy to identify Gavin’s “type”, which made the arrival of this straggly-haired, glasses-wearing lump perplexing. Mr. Lee broke the wax seal and extracted the sheet of yellow paper which bore Gavin’s by-now unmistakable handwriting. Mr. Lee looked over the requests, then back up at Aaron who was attempting to read the scrawled handwriting upside-down.
“You agreed to do this?”Mr. Lee asked Aaron.
“Yeah,” said Aaron. “He said for me to bring the letter to you and that you’d handle the rest. He said I’d enjoy it.”
Well, thought Mr. Lee, everything was well within his capabilities. Gavin had just never asked that so many changes be made to a single individual. He hated that he was going to use up a lot of ingredients without any replacements to compensate. Still, he had agreed to this arrangement and was a man of his word. He began to assemble the elements he would need.
“Can I help you with any of that?” asked Aaron, worried about the old man carrying such heavy glass jars down from their shelves.
“No, but please remove all of your clothes except your underwear.”
“Huh—what?” Aaron had not expected that, but he figured he had better follow instructions, so he slipped off his loafers and his white socks.
After Mr. Lee aligned the necessary jars on his countertop, he raised his hands and the interior of the store dimmed to blackness, with only a single shaft of light shining down on Aaron. If he was self-conscious about his strip-tease before, he was petrified now. Mr. Lee told him to please continue, so Aaron took off his glasses, wriggled out of his sweater, unbuttoned the white button-down beneath it, and dropped his beige Dockers to the floor. He suddenly felt chilly in his Jockey white tee and y-fronts and, noticing his reflection in the full-length mirror, turned away. He knew he wasn’t a pleasant sight, so he tried not to look at himself in the mirror as much as possible, to the point where he rarely glanced in a mirror to comb his hair and avoided making eye contact with himself even when doing something as simple as brushing his teeth.
Mr. Lee moved out from behind the counter with a stepladder and a jar containing a red powder. “Please remove your t-shirt too,” he asked, so Aaron extricated himself from the clingy shirt. Like the rest of his body, Aaron’s torso was distended from excess weight and was practically hairless. Even his face was practically devoid of hair follicles, making it impossible to grow a beard or even an anemic mustache.
Mr. Lee asked Aaron to close his eyes and not open them until told to do so. He felt something soft and slightly itchy gently coating his shoulders, his arms, his chest. Mr. Lee was sprinkling red powder over Aaron’s body, making sure to cover every surface where its effect was needed. Aaron flinched a little when he felt the waistline of his briefs being pulled out, as if Mr. Lee was checking out his equipment, but knew there wasn’t much to be seen there. He felt another dash of powder being tossed onto his buttocks where it tickled.
Taking his place behind the counter, Mr. Lee told Aaron he could open his eyes. Despite his aversion to seeing himself, he had to take a look and couldn’t help but laugh. From his neck to his toes, he was coated in red dust. He started to wonder if this was some elaborate prank and that he was being videotaped. If he had any family or friends who would be embarrassed to see him like this, he’d have been mortified.
Busying himself with the next ingredients, Mr. Lee instructed Aaron to wait for a minute and then brace himself. He knew this would be the most dramatic physical change that Aaron would experience, so getting it out of the way first would ease the path for the more subtle changes to come.
Aaron was tempted to scratch himself, until he noticed that the powder was disappearing. It seemed like his body was actually absorbing the red powder, causing his skin to tingle. In turn, he felt like the powder was actually absorbing his fat. He had to know what was really going on, so he turned to the mirror and watched as his blobby body remolded itself before his eyes. It was occurring everywhere at once, but was most dramatic over his stomach where without any effort on his part, his gut was sucking itself in. The flab that overhung his underpants was retreating rapidly from the waistband, and in a matter of seconds, his pear-shaped torso became solid as an oak, his pecs now wider than his stomach. An invisible sculptor was chiseling away at his every imperfection, whittling his marshmallowy arms into fearsome weapons and his legs into powerful tree-trunks rooting him to the floor. He could feel his ass growing and firming up, and the soft cock in his shorts was lengthening without hardening. Whatever he thought might happen here, none of this was even on the list.
“Wow, that is so random.”
“No, is very specific,” said Mr. Lee, pointing to the yellow paper from Gavin. Mr. Lee returned to Aaron’s side of the counter with a mug full of foul-smelling liquid.
Aaron took a whiff of the beverage, which had notes of pine, cinnamon and dead-body-left-in-car-trunk-for-a-week. Aaron winced. “No, that’s okay, I’m good.”
“This was requested by Mr. Gavin. You must.”
Aaron glanced in the mirror. His body was still in the process of refining itself, his body fat still disappearing. He could see the depressions of nascent six-pack abs, and the details of his biceps and triceps were now sharply visible. Why was he hesitating to drink this new concoction? Did he not want to look even more awesome? He grabbed the mug and guzzled, holding his breath to avoid the awful stench.
“What’s that gonna do?” Aaron asked eagerly while struggling to keep it down.
Mr. Lee silently carried the mug behind the counter and prepared for the next transformation.
Aaron turned to the mirror, waiting to see what would happen. His bones were aching. Maybe it was too much a shock for them to go from carrying so much fat to what seemed to be an even greater weight of muscle. He clenched his teeth and balled his hands into fists as the pain increased. Suddenly, he felt like his entire skeleton was being elongated, and his skin could barely keep pace stretching to house it. He had to see, so he peeked between his eyelids and witnessed himself morphing from a five-seven fire hydrant densely packed with muscle to a more slender, more classically proportioned athlete closing in on six feet. A warmth crept across his skin, radiating outward from his sternum and corresponding to a darkening of his fishbelly white skin into the deep even tan of a lifeguard in August. Aaron wiggled his newer, longer fingers, their touch seemingly more sensitive, and brushed them across the deep grooves of his eight-pack, encountering unfamiliar tufts of silky hair which led from his navel down to his waistband. Similar hairs now emerged across the breadth of his chest and the length of his arms. Stubble covered the smooth skin of his chin and he became aware that sideburns had grown past the base of his ears. This morning’s stubborn zit on his nose was history.
Mr. Lee was ready for the next step, holding a jar of what appeared to be potpourri in front of Aaron and asking him to inhale. The smell was intoxicating, but also stirred up his allergies. He sneezed, creating a dust cloud that enveloped his face. While Aaron was still reeling, Mr. Lee shoved a spoonful of dark pungent crystals into Aaron’s mouth and splashed a rancid liquid onto his hair. Nearly all of Aaron’s senses were in revolt. He felt like crying, blowing his nose, throwing up, shitting and jacking off simultaneously, and he wouldn’t have been surprised if blood was trickling from his ears. But following the rush of sensations overwhelming his body, a feeling of tranquility swept through him which so exceeded any previous experience he had labeled “happiness” that he would have needed to invent a new word for whatever the fuck this was.
His eyesight miraculously sharper than it had ever been, Aaron turned to the mirror and loved the man he saw. His sloppy anti-haircut had remolded itself into a neatly trimmed thatch of spun gold, made rugged by the sideburns and stubble below. His eyes, always a non-committal hazel, had now deepened into an entrancing and sexy brown. But the more profound changes could not be seen externally. In addition to feelings of self-confidence that now permeated Aaron’s consciousness, he also became aware of a more major mental shift as he regarded himself in the mirror. It wasn’t merely that he had gone from avoiding his own reflection to reveling in it. He found himself actually getting hard as his eyes roved the contours of his new shape. He smiled with the knowledge that others would react similarly when they saw him, and when he envisioned sharing his body with someone, all he could imagine was other men. Until that moment, Aaron had been adamantly—although mostly academically—heterosexual, with no gay tendencies at all. Now he felt an emptiness between his ass cheeks which he knew would need tending to, and soon.
Mr. Lee could tell by Aaron’s expression that a change in sexual orientation had occurred. Although his entire life was built on changing the traits of his customers, he always felt a twinge of guilt when it came to gay/straight issues because of the years when so many of the men who came into his shop were asking that he “cure” them of their homosexuality. Mr. Lee would do it, and it was always successful, but he didn’t like the feeling that he was “curing” people. He never was asked to “cure” someone of having brown hair or green eyes. They merely wanted to be different from the way they were. Now that society had become more accepting, Mr. Lee had far fewer customers who wished him to make them straight, and he figured the rare ones like Aaron who went from straight to gay were just helping to even things out karmically.
Gavin’s instructions had been so particular that only now, upon seeing them all realized, did Mr. Lee realize how precisely Gavin had designed the new Aaron to suit his preferences.
“Oh my god,” Aaron shouted, reacting as he heard a happy lilt in his voice. “You’ve changed my life! I can’t wait to show everyone the new me!” He reached across the counter to give Mr. Lee a kiss, but Mr. Lee blew a gray powder into Aaron’s face. Aaron sputtered, then reeled as some of the powder made it into his nose and found its way into his bloodstream. Aaron lowered himself to the floor and felt incredibly tired all of a sudden. He stretched out, extending his new limbs to their maximum, as a cloud formed over his consciousness. Soon he was blissfully asleep.
Unquestionably, the gray powder was the element in his toolkit about which Mr. Lee felt the greatest unease, for it masked the recipient’s entire sense of identity. Mr. Lee mostly dealt in changing a customer’s surface details, but unless a customer voluntarily gave up some of their intelligence, they usually still felt like the same person at heart when they left. The gray powder, however, would cloud Aaron’s mind so much and bury his true self so deeply that it was as if Aaron never existed. His identity would now be shaped by what other people told him he was. It was perhaps the most dangerous item in the store, and in the wrong hands…
Mr. Lee hoped that Gavin’s were not the wrong hands.
Good morning, Hunter.”
The man lying face down on the bed heard the words but wasn’t initially aware they were directed at him. A beefy hand shook his shoulder, so he turned drowsily and looked up at an older guy with dark curly hair seated beside him on the bed. He might not know the old guy, but the old guy sure seemed to know him.
“How are you feeling this morning, Hunter?” the old guy asked.
Hunter—for that, apparently, was his name—gave it some thought and realized he felt extremely good. He turned over, propping his back against his pillow. The silk sheets felt nice around his naked body and started to tent over his growing erection. He self-consciously repositioned his leg to hide his boner from the old guy, thinking it’d be embarrassing to have a hard-on in front of his dad…if that’s who this guy was.
The old guy noticed the hard-on and smiled, placing his hand on Hunter’s knee. “The sheets feel nice, don’t they?” Hunter nodded. The old man moved his hand so it rested over Hunter’s engorged cock, still hidden under the sheet. “And this feels very nice, doesn’t it?” Hunter nodded emphatically, really hoping this guy wasn’t his dad.
The old man stood up, continuing to speak to the young man gently, as if he were giving instructions to a five-year-old. “I have to go to work, Hunter, but you can just stay here and enjoy the house. All of your clothes are in the closet over there.” He gestured to a walk-in closet with a full-length mirror on its door. “The swimming pool is just outside those doors.” He pointed to the south-facing windows where the morning sun was already beaming through. “And if you get hungry or thirsty or if there’s anything else you need, just ask one of the servants, okay?”
That all sounded good to Hunter, who nodded and said, “Thank you, sir.”
The old man looked down with disappointment. “‘Sir’? You know my name is Gavin, babe.”
The old man leaned down and kissed Hunter on the lips. Hunter was surprised at first, but realized it felt right. He kissed back and felt hungry for more when the old man, Gavin, turned and left the room.
Hunter stretched his arms and yawned. It seemed like he had been asleep for a very long time, but he felt well-rested and invigorated. He hopped out of bed energetically and curled his toes in the lush carpeting. He caught his reflection in the mirror on the closet door. Strange that his own reflection seemed so unfamiliar to him, but he wasn’t going to complain about what he saw. His cock stuck out from his waistline, parallel to the floor, and he couldn’t resist stroking it as he walked through the spacious bedroom to the closet.
Clothes lined two walls of the so-called closet, which looked big enough to have been someone’s bedroom at one time. A three-way mirror stood at the far end, giving Hunter multiple views of himself. He positioned himself by the three-way mirror and checked out the ample curvature of his dimpled glutes. No tan lines interrupted the brown-sugar hue of his skin. He spotted a wallet atop a chest of drawers and flipped it open. Sure enough, there was a driver’s license for Hunter J. Davis, and a picture where his eyes were halfway closed and his lips were curled as if in mid-sneeze. Funny how your driver’s license picture never looks exactly like you.
Sliding open a drawer, he discovered an array of colorful thongs, jockstraps and silk bikini briefs, although his instinct was to go without any underwear. Nothing on the racks seemed familiar to him, but as he began to try on clothes, they were all precisely his size. He knew he ought to put on something, if only to avoid shocking the servants. He slid into a bright red Speedo, which strained mightily to contain his hard cock, and stepped into some flip-flops, then headed outside to the swimming pool. He kicked off the footwear and dove in, his powerful muscles propelling him swiftly through the water. The sun cut through the clouds, shining upon the pool, and Hunter felt rejuvenated, reborn.
Gavin was more than pleased with the way Mr. Lee had refurbished Aaron. He had not yet noticed an imperfection, and finding the mistakes of others was Gavin’s primary mission in life. He considered sending Mr. Lee some sort of gift to show his appreciation, but previous attempts to do so had always been politely declined. Mr. Lee said he was just living up to their deal and he would feel guilty receiving any additional gifts from Gavin. From Gavin’s point of view, it was probably wise to limit his interactions with Mr. Lee, to preserve the secrecy of their business arrangement. After Gavin had initially limited his visits to off hours, he eventually ceased going in person at all unless he needed changes to his own body. Otherwise, he would just send his sealed confidential instructions with an understanding that Mr. Lee would destroy them once the modifications had been done.
Gavin’s final instruction to Mr. Lee yesterday was that he put Aaron into a taxi that would deposit the dazed young man on a bus bench outside Gavin’s mansion. Servants were then sent to retrieve him and deposit him in Gavin’s bed. That night as Aaron slumbered, recuperating from the trauma of undergoing so many changes at once, Gavin slipped a pair of headphones onto Aaron’s ears. All night long, a continuous loop informed Aaron of the details of his new identity: his name was Hunter Davis, he was the lover of Gavin Scott, they had been together for four years, they lived in a mansion in Pacific Heights and, most importantly, Hunter was agoraphobic. The very notion of leaving their comfortable home without Gavin at his side to comfort him would cause Hunter to suffer violent panic attacks. That was the final crucial detail Gavin had realized was missing in his previous relationships: eventually the other man would grow tired of dealing with Gavin’s moods and his possessiveness and take off. At last, Gavin was constructing a partner to correspond to his needs, and this one would become ill at the very thought of being anywhere in public without Gavin to protect and calm him.
Hunter was lying face down on an inflatable chaise in the pool, toes and fingers dangling in the topaz-blue water. Fearing a tan line, he had ditched the Speedo after all, wadding it into a soggy ball that was now drying in the sun. A homely woman in her sixties walked alongside the pool, carrying a freshly blended smoothie. “I have your lunch for you, Mr. Hunter,” she said, placing the glass on the edge of the pool.
Hunter lifted his head and took a look at her. “Thank you, uh…what is your name?”
Hunter nodded, somehow feeling that he should have known her, even though she looked utterly unfamiliar.
“It is good to have you back, Mr. Hunter,” she said before returning inside.
Hunter paddled over to poolside and grabbed his drink, slurping it down so quickly he got a sharp pain behind the eyes. He leaned back on the chaise, his cock and balls bobbing on the surface of the water and admired the view of the city around him. He knew he and Gavin had been together for four years, but the details were vague. What had he done to deserve all this?
That evening, Carlotta served the men squab. Hunter picked at it, frankly more in the mood for Kentucky Fried Chicken, but Gavin was attempting to get Hunter to broaden his horizons. Hunter shrugged and wished the squab had at least been coated in eleven herbs and spices.
“How did we meet?” Hunter asked.
“You don’t remember?” Hunter shrugged apologetically. Gavin set down his knife and fork and told about their meeting at the summer Olympics four years ago. Gavin had donated a considerable amount of money to fund the men’s swim team, and he had been seated next to Hunter at a charity fundraising dinner. Gavin took an immediate shine to Hunter, although he couldn’t imagine that the virile young swimmer would ever reciprocate those feelings for someone like Gavin, especially after Hunter won two silver medals and a bronze. “Like a pathetic old man, I tried to buy your love. I started to give you things. I bought you clothes. I took you on vacations. And eventually, I guess I wore down your resistance. I was the one person with the money and resources to protect you from the fame and the crowds that so frightened you. I brought you here, and we’ve had four years of happiness together.”
It all sounded wonderful to Hunter, but he still found no evidence of it in his own memory. Gavin sensed Hunter’s skepticism, so he walked to a bookshelf and retrieved a scrapbook of clippings. Sure enough, there was Hunter, or someone who looked damn like him, on the starting blocks. Hunter on the medal stand beside Ryan Lochte. Hunter and Gavin together at the top of the Eiffel Tower. Gavin led Hunter into the den where his three Olympic medals hung in a frame above the fireplace. Hunter was amazed to learn what a glorious life he had lived.
“I’m sorry I’m so stupid that I don’t remember any of this,” Hunter said, draping his arms over Gavin’s shoulders and starting to weep.
Gavin patted Hunter’s back gently. “There, there. You’re not stupid, Hunter. Why would I want to spend time with a stupid person?”
Hunter leaned back and wiped away his tears, saying, “Because I’ve got a huge cock?”
Gavin laughed. “Well, that doesn’t hurt.” He hugged Hunter again. “Actually, sometimes it does.” Hunter finally laughed.
Indeed, it was true that Gavin did not want to spend his time around a stupid person. One of the reasons he chose Aaron for this transformation was that he was intelligent, although far from an intellectual. He wanted a pupil he could mold, he could educate, he could bring to appreciate the finer things in life. Far more important, however, was Aaron’s utter isolation from anyone who cared for him. Of all the employees within Gavin’s organization, Aaron was the one whose absence was least likely to be noticed by the rest of the world. The only drawback to wiping away Aaron’s personality was that he would never be aware of just how profoundly Gavin had changed his life for the better and would never be able to thank Gavin properly for rescuing him from the life of Aaron Weiskopf.
That night, Gavin sent the servants home, and he and Hunter fucked in every room of the house. It was a seventeen-room house. Their last stop was the bedroom where Hunter collapsed, exhausted. Gavin could barely move either, but he managed to slip headphones onto Hunter and start a loop of messages which reminded Hunter how much he loved and could trust Gavin, and how he would never think of leaving.
After several weeks refining Hunter’s tastes and instructing him how to behave outside of the house, Gavin felt it was time for Hunter to return to the public eye. Thanks to Gavin’s subliminal message campaign, Hunter was spooked by the idea, but Gavin assured him it would be fine because Gavin would be beside him the whole time. Gavin was being saluted at a charity ball for his generous donations to health-care initiatives in the Bay Area, and it would not be proper for him to show up without his man-candy on his arm. Despite Hunter’s closet full of clothes, Gavin wanted Hunter to wear something new to the gala. He took Hunter after-hours to a tailor where Gavin specified what he wanted so exactly that the tailor became more of a stenographer.
When the big night arrived, Gavin stepped out of the limo and was blasted by a seizure-inducing flurry of camera flashes. He reached back into the limo and took Hunter’s hand. The lanky athlete stepped out in a silver lame suit contoured to emphasize every perfect curve of his magnificent body. Under the suit, he did not wear a shirt, but rather a black Fastskin body suit just like the one Hunter had worn in the pool at the Olympics. It was a bold unconventional look that was the talk of the evening and caused a frenzy in the press. Hunter’s biggest complaint was that it made taking a leak a major hassle. At least in the pool, he could just piss himself and no one would be any the wiser.
Hunter survived the evening without a panic attack, which he attributed to having Gavin close by the entire night, holding his hand. When they got home, Hunter shed his suit, extracted himself from the Lycra swimming unitard and let Gavin fuck him raw. At long last, Gavin felt like he had won life. He was rich, he was respected, he was feared, and now he had someone who loved him unconditionally.
The following morning, as Mr. Lee was pouring himself a cup of tea, a man in a trenchcoat and a baseball cap ducked quickly into his shop. The man had long scraggly hair and a full unkempt beard. He looked and smelled homeless and was clutching a crumpled newspaper in his hand. He walked over to the counter where Mr. Lee backed up, fearing he was about to be robbed.
“I have no money. Please don’t hurt me.”
“I won’t hurt you. I need your help.” His voice was raspy with an asthmatic wheeze. He removed his grimy A’s baseball cap and pulled back his greasy blond hair so Mr. Lee could get a clear look at his deep brown eyes. “Do I look familiar to you?”
Mr. Lee studied the man. His features did seem familiar, but he could not say for certain. “I see many people here. I cannot remember them all.”
“How about if I told you I was sent here by Gavin Scott?”
That narrowed it down a bit, but still…
“What if I told you my name was Hunter Davis?”
Mr. Lee nodded, although the Hunter Davis he remembered was immaculately dressed, clean-shaven and smelled of chlorine and not B.O. “I do remember you. Maybe four years ago?”
“That’s right,” said the shabby-looking man. He slapped the newspaper onto the counter and pointed to a photo of Gavin Scott arriving at the gala with his tall blond companion. “So do you mind telling me who this is?”
Gavin treated himself to a rare Sunday off, refusing to take any business calls as he sat in a lounge chair by his pool and watched Hunter swim. By “no business calls”, Gavin of course meant “some business calls”. When you owned so many different operations in so many different corners of the world, it was impossible to disconnect for a day, but he was trying his best to relax a little and enjoy the fruits of his labors. At the moment, his favorite fruit was the peach, as it reminded him of the two tanned cheeks bobbing through the water as Hunter did his laps in the buff. Gavin was wearing a black Speedo and, despite the remarkably good shape he was in for a man of his age (courtesy of Mr. Lee’s magic), he was far too bulky for the Speedo to look flattering. But, hey, you try telling Gavin Scott that he’s wrong. Hunter had attempted to steer him toward something a little more becoming, but Gavin wasn’t having it.
In the distance, Gavin could hear the front door chimes. He should have known not to send the staff home today. He considered ignoring the bell, but he figured he should at least find out who it was. He pulled on a plush robe and sandals and made his way downstairs.
He peeked through the stained-glass window in the front door and saw a female officer in full uniform standing stiffly on his steps. She could see the movement of Gavin’s shadow inside. “Mr. Scott?”
Gavin called through the closed door. “Yes. Is this something that can wait until tomorrow?”
“I’m afraid not, sir. Could you open the door please?”
Upstanding citizen that he made every effort to appear to be, Gavin did not want to gain a reputation for refusing to cooperate with law enforcement. He swung open the door and the officer removed her hat, revealing long red hair pinned up in a bun. “I’m Officer Rebecca O’Hara. I’m following up on a missing persons complaint on one of your employees.”
Alarm bells went off in Gavin’s head, but he maintained a poker face. “Certainly. I’ll help if I can, but you do realize that I have tens of thousands of employees scattered worldwide.”
“Yes, of course, sir, but this was someone from your office here in San Francisco. One of your accountants. An…” She checked her notepad. “…Aaron Weiskopf.”
Gavin made a convincing show of straining his memory, before shaking his head. “Can’t say that it rings a bell. Sorry.”
He attempted to close the door, but O’Hara stepped inside. “The thing is, sir, we think you may have played some role in his disappearance.”
“Whose disappearance?” Hunter was asking from the staircase, dripping wet with a towel wrapped around his waist. Gavin and the officer turned toward him. Officer O’Hara was amazed to see the athlete standing there, looking just as he had in the Olympics four years ago, only with some of his features more refined, improved, perfected.
O’Hara repeated, “Aaron Weiskopf. One of Mr. Scott’s employees.”
Somewhere deep inside Hunter’s head, the name Aaron Weiskopf resonated, but he had no idea why. Maybe he’d heard Gavin mention him.
“Don’t worry, we don’t suspect you of anything, Mr. Davis. But we do have a bit of evidence that connects Mr. Scott here to the disappearance.” From the back pocket of her uniform, Officer O’Hara produced an envelope from Mr. Scott’s office, with “Mr. Lee” and an address written across the front. “Is this your handwriting, Mr. Scott?”
Gavin stared at the envelope, monitoring his reactions carefully. “I don’t know. It does look like my writing, but someone could have forged it.”
O’Hara replied, “Yeah, that’s what we thought too, down at the station. So we dusted for fingerprints. There are only two sets on it. Mr. Weiskopf’s and yours.” She studied Gavin’s face for any response. “It’s not so easy to forge fingerprints, Mr. Scott.”
Gavin stared down the officer, whose green eyes glared back just as insistently. “I understand you’re just doing your duty, Miss O’Hara.”
“Yes, and on a Sunday too, so you’re to be commended for putting in the extra effort, but as you can see, I’m not exactly dressed for a police interrogation. Perhaps you could come to my office tomorrow and we could discuss this in more detail? With my attorney present?”
O’Hara studied Gavin’s face, trying to figure out his next move. She nodded and told him that would be fine. “Sorry for interrupting your…fun, gentlemen.” She stepped outside and Gavin closed the door.
Gavin stomped his way up the stairs, passing a confused Hunter. “Who is this Aaron Weiskopf she mentioned?”
Gavin waved him off as he entered the bedroom. “Just somebody. A nobody. No one you should think about.”
“I could swear I heard his name somewhere before.” Hunter leaned against the doorway, legs crossed at the ankle as he watched Gavin getting dressed hurriedly. “Is he an old boyfriend of yours?”
Gavin refused to turn and look at Hunter as he answered, “Aaron Weiskopf is not an old boyfriend.”
“Then maybe he’s somebody you fucked.”
Gavin stopped, his pants pulled up to his waist but unbuckled. He turned to Hunter and asked, “Why would you say a thing like that?”
“I don’t know. It’s just that I’m stuck here all day while you’re out in the world, meeting important people, while I just sit here and swim back and forth and back and forth. I get jealous that you might meet someone you like better than me.”
Gavin walked over and cradled Hunter’s face in his hands. “Are you kidding, babe? Why would I cheat on you? You were made for me.”
Hunter snorted back his tears and wiped his nose with the back of his hand. Gavin told him, “I need to go out for a bit. You just sit tight, okay?” Gavin ruffled Hunter’s damp blond hair.
Hair tucked under a Giants cap, Gavin ducked out the back of the mansion, making sure that Officer O’Hara was not still lurking in the vicinity. He took a circuitous route, ducking through restaurants, even hopping onto a cable car for a couple of stops, in hopes of shaking anyone that might be trailing him. Eventually, he reached the back door of Mr. Lee’s shop and knocked the agreed-upon secret signal. He had made enough unannounced visits to Mr. Lee’s shop over the years to know that the old man never seemed to leave the place, even at night or on a gorgeous Sunday afternoon like this.
Through the door, Gavin heard the sound of slippers shuffling on old linoleum. The door cracked open and Mr. Lee squinted to see who was bothering him. “It’s me, Lee,” snapped Gavin. “Who else does the ‘shave and a haircut’ knock?”
Mr. Lee swung open the door and Gavin barged in, walking past the walls lined with clothes left behind from previous transformations and entering the main shop. “A policewoman came to my house this afternoon. I don’t suppose you can tell me how that happened.”
Mr. Lee said, “Perhaps she came in a car.”
Gavin laughed bitterly. “Very amusing, Mr. Lee. It’s a good thing I like you, because otherwise I’d kill you.”
“I do not need to be liked by you. I only need to do what you ask me to do.”
“That’s right,” Gavin shouted. “And didn’t I ask that you always destroy my instructions to you?”
“I do destroy instructions.”
“Then how did the cops find my fingerprints on the envelope?”
“You only said to destroy instructions. Never said to destroy envelope instructions came in.”
Gavin fumed. Some very racist thoughts flooded his mind, but he tried his best to seem outwardly rational. Mr. Lee walked over to a hotplate and took a teapot of boiling water off the burner. “Have some tea. It will calm you down.”
Mr. Lee poured two teacups, letting Gavin choose which one he wanted. Gavin reached for one, then hesitated and fixed his eyes on Mr. Lee. “Oh, no. I’m onto you, Lee. What did you put in there? Some truth serum? Or I take a sip and, boom, I’m a twelve-year-old girl? No, you’ve messed with the wrong person, Lee. This little shop of yours is finished. I’m gonna bulldoze this old firetrap and put up condos, and you’ll be on the street in Chinatown selling motherfucking trinkets made in New Jersey!”
Gavin heard a familiar voice from the back room. “Ah, that’s the kind of pillow talk I’ve missed.”
Gavin’s eyes widened. “Hunter? I thought I told you to stay at home.”
The door to the back room swung open, revealing Hunter Davis. Shaggy haired and malnourished, but clearly the Olympic medalist, although at the moment he was wearing an ill-fitting San Francisco Police Department uniform. “Oh, I’m not THAT Hunter, although I must say Mr. Lee did an amazing job following your specifications, but then you’ve always been pretty meticulous when it comes to blueprints. Even the voice was pretty close, although I can see why you didn’t let him talk in public much. If I didn’t know I was me, I would be positive he was me.”
Now Gavin understood why Hunter was wearing that uniform. Just to drive it home, Hunter snapped shut a couple of metal bracelets that had been hanging loosely around his wrist. He braced himself as his body underwent convulsions before morphing into the red-haired woman who had paid a visit to Gavin earlier. “Sure ‘n begorrah, it’s Ah-fficer O’Hara, don’tcha know.” He—well, she—smiled cunningly before unsnapping the bracelets and reverting to being Hunter. He handed the bracelets across the counter to Mr. Lee.
“It was bad enough that you kept sending me to poor Mr. Lee to fix what you saw as my imperfections. Always sending me over here for a pointier nose, a bigger cock, a squarer jaw, an even bigger cock…”
Gavin stared at Hunter with what seemed like genuine hurt in his eyes. “I only wanted you to be the best person you could be.”
“I’m an Olympic fucking medalist! I’ve spent my whole life training to be the best person I could be. I was pretty damn awesome when you met me. Most people would be happy with that. I’ll admit you swept me away at first. I’d never met anyone who was willing to treat me so lavishly, to take me anywhere in the world on a second’s notice. I put up with a lot of your shit to live that lifestyle. But, Gavin, baby, you are a control freak. Emphasis on control and freak.”
“Okay, so I’m an asshole. You didn’t have to leave me like you did, in the middle of the night with no warning.”
“That was the only way to get away from you! For an entire year, I’ve been on the run, hiding from your hired goons, afraid that someone would recognize me for who I really was, and that you’d have me killed or, worse, dragged back here to keep on living with you. But I guess when it finally hit you that you couldn’t have me any more, you decided to find some schlub with no life and make HIM into your ideal version of me.”
“Why did you come back? Why couldn’t you leave me in peace? I had a new lover. I was happy.”
“You don’t want a lover, you want a puppy. Someone who will sit up and beg and roll over whenever you bark. But I wasn’t willing to play dead for you any longer.”
Gavin saw no point in staying here any longer where Hunter and Mr. Lee controlled the playing field, so he bolted toward the front door. Flinging it open, he ran down the sidewalk. Looking back to see if Hunter was pursuing him, he plowed directly into Hunter.
The other Hunter.
“What are you doing here?”, Gavin asked. “Aren’t you afraid to be out in public like this?”
“Yeah, but I was more afraid to be left alone at home without you, so I followed you to see where you were going. A couple of times I thought I lost you, but then I saw this store and I could swear I was here once before.”
“C’mon, let’s get outta here,” Gavin whispered, but Hunter was staring down the sidewalk at…himself. Wearing a woman’s police uniform for some unknown reason, but otherwise it could be his identical twin. Hunter (the one who used to be Aaron) held tight onto Gavin’s arm and walked toward the other Hunter (the one who had always been Hunter).
Aaron/Hunter looked at Gavin and said, “Do you want to tell me what’s going on?”
Gavin broke free and ran down the sidewalk where Mr. Lee was waiting for him. He blew some of his potent gray powder into Gavin’s face. Gavin reeled back in shock and collapsed onto the sidewalk. At Mr. Lee’s urging, one Hunter took Gavin’s shoulder, the other Hunter grabbed Gavin’s feet, and they carried him inside the shop.
While Aaron/Hunter watched over Gavin’s motionless body like a loyal St. Bernard, Hunter/Hunter huddled with Mr. Lee by the counter, discussing what to do next. Now that the gray powder was in Gavin’s system, they would be able to reprogram him in any way they wished. Hunter’s suggestions tended to be more malicious and vindictive, like wanting to turn Gavin into a totally submissive bottom or, perhaps, like Gavin had suggested, a twelve-year-old girl. Mr. Lee felt the fewer changes they made, the better. If someone as famous as Gavin Scott began to act uncharacteristically or vanished entirely, it could lead to an investigation, which might direct suspicions to Mr. Lee and jeopardize the future of the shop.
Mr. Lee’s solution was to undo the promises he had made to Gavin all those years ago. They needed to make Gavin forget that he ever knew about the shop, that he ever had Mr. Lee do procedures for him and that he had ever signed an agreement allowing Mr. Lee to stay here as long as he wished. The contract would still exist, but because Gavin had scrupulously kept his name off of any of the paperwork, he would never be reminded that the deal had ever happened. Mr. Lee could continue his charitable works without the cloud of Gavin’s demands hanging over him.
That all sounded fine to Hunter, but he still believed Gavin needed a major personality revamp. After Gavin had spent so much effort trying to create the perfect Hunter, it only made sense that Hunter should now have the chance to design the ideal Gavin. It wasn’t that Gavin was an entirely awful person. Hunter could never have survived with him for three years if he hadn’t had some endearing qualities. However much his insistence on always being right and his lack of fear may have helped him in the business world, they made him a sour human being to live with. Mr. Lee nodded, realizing that his initial potion to rid Gavin of his fears may have led to all of his subsequent relationship problems. He vowed to undo it.
Mr. Lee asked, “Anything else?”
Hunter considered the question, then said, “I want my Olympic medals back.” Mr. Lee nodded.
Hunter’s attention turned to his doppelganger still hovering over Gavin. “Now what do we do about him?”
The next day, Gavin Scott issued a press release, announcing his retirement from day-to-day management of Scott Global and its affiliates. “It has been an amazing run, but it is now time for me to retire, allowing me to travel the world with my beloved partner in life and future husband, Hunter Davis.” Gavin was also immediately donating half of his fortune to various charities, with the bulk of the rest to be donated upon his eventual death.
The press release included a photograph of Gavin and Hunter together. Based on the photograph, it was universally believed that Gavin Scott had “had a lot of work done”. But whoever had done it was a wizard, because Gavin looked fucking amazing. His body was trim. His face had a youthful glow. He could easily have passed for a man in his thirties. If anything, it was Hunter who had gotten some unfortunate adjustments, as his nose was too pointy, his jaw artificially square and…well, that bulge in his pants was too massive to be believed.
The new Gavin’s personality was essentially the old Gavin minus the competitive drive, envy and spite, and his body was a work of art courtesy of Mr. Lee. And if anything about Gavin started to get on Hunter’s nerves, Hunter had a lifetime pass to bring Gavin back into the shop for adjustments.
When they weren’t globe-trotting or do-gooding, Hunter and Gavin remained involved with the men’s Olympic swim team. Hunter paid particular attention to mentoring one unlikely swimmer who seemed to have emerged from nowhere. He was tall and handsome with a brown buzz cut and a body that was similar to Hunter’s at its peak. Many even thought this new kid was better than Hunter had ever been, with a real chance at Olympic gold. As the next summer games approached, women and gay men across the USA were rooting for Aaron Weiskopf.
And whenever Gavin showed a bit too much interest in Aaron’s progress, Hunter felt jealous.
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