...He followed Jason to the campus grill, nervous at being on a date. He waited, leafing through the history text, as Jason got the coffee.
Jason spread some papers around and opened the book, to give the appearance they were just studying. Chad watched, holding his coffee.
Finally, he had to ask. He bent over the book and whispered, “So, how did you know? Lucky guess?”
Jason nodded and turned a page. “You didn’t get all flustered. And when I tried a leading question, you didn’t slug me.”
Chad smiled. “Slugging isn’t allowed in the code of conduct anyway. Hasn’t been that long ago that I realized it. It’s been an okay secret.”
Jason took a drink of the coffee. “You didn’t growl at me or anything. Straight guys hate the idea of gays. They wouldn’t have been so eager to help me find a book.”
Chad needed to know. “Do you get slugged a lot? I mean…I never tried. I don’t know.”
Jason shrugged. “A couple times. I’ve got pretty good gaydar.”
Chad smiled and tasted his own coffee. “You’ll have to help me tune mine up.
“It’s not hard. Observation, mostly. I noticed you noticing me. By the way, I’m not sure you got my name. I’m Jace. You know, like Joxer’s gay brother or Han Solo’s kid.” Chad blinked and smiled. Jace face-palmed. “I am such a geek sometimes.”
“Geek is cute on you.” He leaned closer and whispered, “It’s okay, I’m a closet Jedi, myself.” In normal tones, he continued, “I’m Chad.”
Chad glanced down at his shirt and saw he was still wearing his library nametag. Chad Jacobs, Interlibrary Loan. “Guess I’m obvious.” He jumped when Jace’s bracelet clanked on the table.
“You like this?” Jace pulled back his sleeve.
“I love it. Where’d you get it?”
“Made it. Caught you staring a time or two like you were figuring it out.”
Chad swallowed hard. He wasn’t sure he wanted Jace to know so much about him already. He wanted to ask if the bracelet was heavy, if Jace liked heavy things around his wrists.
Instead, he said, “Yeah. It’s different. I never saw one like that before.”
Jace undid a hook and laid the bracelet out. “It’s not hard. It’s just a Byzantine chain.”
“Not hard?” Chad stared at the intertwined links. Two links, flanked by links in a vee that hooked into another ring with another encircling the vee. It looked incredibly hard. He wasn’t sure he could figure out how it went together. He handed the bracelet back. “It’s hot on you.”
Jace wrapped it around Chad’s wrist. “It’s hot on you, too.” He fastened it off and stroked Chad’s inner arm, sending little tingles through his veins. “Bracelets aren’t all I make.”
“Really? What else?”
“I don’t do full armor. I like jewelry better. Earrings. Necklaces. The coifs the ladies like to wear.” Jace leaned in close and whispered, “Sexy kink stuff.”
Chad gulped the end of his coffee to hide his shock at having his fondest hopes for the date answered. He took a breath and screwed up his courage. “What kind of kink stuff?” he whispered, barely managing the words.
Jace traced a finger through some spilled sugar. “Chain mail bras with minimal cups. G-strings. Cock rings.” He looked up. “It sells.”
“I want to see.”
Jace’s face lit up with pleasure. “I got pictures back at my place. You want to come?” He drank off his coffee.
Chad swallowed at that invitation, then decided to pretend he hadn’t heard the double meaning. He nodded. “Yeah. I’ll follow...”