Isaac had never liked parties. He had always felt out of place at them. But perhaps, just perhaps, he would feel more comfortable at a party like this one. Only he didn't, yet.
Well. It had only been fifteen minutes. And it was his first gay party. He had half expected to be asked to show some sort of credentials at the door, to prove that he really belonged there, perhaps a card with a picture of him certifying that he really was gay. Totally inexperienced, but gay.
And as usual, he had managed to overdress. He wasn't the only man there in a jacket and tie, but there were only a couple of others. When he had gotten himself a drink, another man standing at the makeshift bar had asked him if he was in the Log Cabin Republicans. The next time, he would wear something less formal. If he had anything. He wasn't sure he did. Somehow, whenever he bought clothes, he always found himself going home with more white shirts and black blazers and slacks, matching his own pale complexion and raven hair. Anything else made him feel flashy. Well, after all, he was a district attorney. He was used to formal dress.
The music was loud, and to Isaac's surprise, it was heavy metal,
not Broadway tunes, the Village People, or Judy Garland. Though the host had CDs of all these.
Across the room, Isaac caught sight of his host. Since he didn't know anyone else there, he started to make his way through the crowd, narrowly avoiding a roughhousing pair, hoping he didn't give offense by bumping into anyone. It gave him a sudden odd feeling of déjà vu. But then, he had been in this position often before, moving awkwardly through a crowd of strangers.
Don't expect too much, he reminded himself. You're just here to make a few acquaintances. To make a start.
He thought he had located a pathway of sorts through the crowd, but discovered too late that it was merely the space claimed by some sort of party game. He learned this when a pair of hands descended quite firmly onto his shoulders. Isaac froze, having no idea what to do.
His "captor" was the same height as he, and considerably brawnier, with shaggy light brown hair that reached his shoulders, and was wearing a blindfold. Isaac began to feel nervous. What the heck kind of game was this?
The other players, gathered in a rough circle around them, burst out laughing, but quickly smothered their mirth, watching the blindfolded man as he moved one hand from Isaac's shoulder to lightly trace his features. Isaac thought he should say something, but he was too busy blushing. The stranger's hands were large with slightly roughened skin, and his arms muscular, revealed by a tank top that left little to the imagination.
"Theo?" he asked with a grin. The observers cracked up.
Isaac had to say something. "Uh, you don't know me. I just accidentally"
"Then have one on the house," the blindfolded man said, and before Isaac had a chance to ask one what, the other man had leaned forward and kissed him. A brief kiss, lasting a few seconds, more than a peck but not the prolonged romantic kiss of a movie screen. The stranger's lips tasted slightly of beer and he smelled of a musky aftershave.
It wasn't what Isaac had expected of his first kiss from a man, but he wasn't about to complain. Not when the stranger pulled off his blindfold to reveal a pair of vividly blue eyes, striking in that tanned face. Eyes that were now evaluating Isaac with what could only be appreciation. Isaac hoped that blushing suited him.
"I'm Brent," he said. When Isaac did not immediately respond, he prompted, "We haven't heard your name yet."
Everyone was grinning at him. At both of them. Isaac surprised himself by smiling and retorting, "That's because I haven't said it yet."
They all guffawed as if it were the funniest thing anyone had ever said. Isaac wondered how many beers they had had.
"Guess he told you, Brent!" one of the others jeered good-naturedly.
Hoping he hadn't offended Brent, Isaac said to him, "I didn't mean to walk into your game. I'm sorry."
"I'm not," the other man said, a new little smile spreading across his square-jawed, well-defined face. Isaac suddenly thought that he had been looking at every man he had ever seen in his life, hoping to find this very face. Isaac seldom felt comfortable with well, with anyone, actually, unless he had known them for years. But he felt surprisingly at ease already. Was it just because he knew, for once, that he wasn't the only queer in the room?
"Have we met?" Isaac heard himself ask. The others cracked up again.
"Ask him his sign next!" one of them taunted, but it was good-natured. Not that the friendliness stopped Isaac from blushing even harder.
"I think you need to loosen up," another said, taking a step closer to Isaac. "Let me get you a drink."
"Hey, I saw him first," Brent objected, draping an arm around Isaac's shoulder. "Okay, well, actually, I didn't, but still. I got dibs." He smiled at Isaac. "Shall we?"
Isaac realized that he was smiling in return. "Of course."
A few paces away from his friends, Brent said, "So, what do you do? No, don't tell me: you're an all-powerful sorcerer."
"How did you know?" Isaac managed to reply.
Those vivid eyes gave him another deliciously embarrassing once-over. "Because I'm already under your spell."
All in all, the evening was going rather well.