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Title: "The Bed-wetter" (1/1)
Note: Saw A.J. and Sarah (with Brian and Leighanne) on "Crossing 0ver." At one point A.J. makes a reference to his grandmother 'cleaning him' (saying she'd know what he meant). I made my own conclusions. In answer to Kit's challenge at the Nasty list (but I don't know how 'nasty' this really is).
"Get up right now Alex," he could hear his grandmother calling.
A.J. McLean sat up with a start, his eyes darting around the dimly lit room as he strived to get his bearings.
No, he wasn't a child awaking to prepare for another difficult day at school. He was a grown man--lying in yet another anonymous hotel bedroom.
A.J. breathed a deep sigh of relief.
The smell struck him first. Then he noticed the dampness of his pajamas and the sheet below him.
Damn it! He'd soiled the bed. Just like the old days when he was, indeed, a little kid--living with his grandma...
A.J. rose carefully when he noticed Brian Littrell was (for some reason) asleep in the bed next to his. He was anxious not to wake his friend--especially in light of the circumstances.
A.J. shuffled awkwardly to the bathroom, his hands grasping his clothing around him in an effort to not make an even bigger mess.
When he reached the spacious bathroom he quickly slid down of his p.j. bottoms. They fell in a rumbled heap around his ankles.
The smell wafting around him was strong--and slightly acidic. The mess was all over his ass and thighs--and his clothing had painted a trail down his muscular legs. (A trail that was increasing as he stood there, disgusted with himself.)
A.J. stared into the large mirror. But he wasn't seeing himself, haggard from another night of abusing his body with alcohol and drugs. He was transported back in time. Back to the days when he'd been an undersized and picked on boy...
Alex McLean had been a bed-wetter for many years of his young life. And it had been a terrible embarrassment to rise in the mornings and find his sheets soaked, yet again, and his clothing uncomfortably wet against his skin.
But his grandmother--who was the major force in their household--had never been judgmental. She'd never been unkind or scolding. She'd come to his room early, before anyone else was awake and gently help him to clean up. She'd have the bed stripped in no time, gathering the sheets in her arms with the ease of a woman well-practiced in the art of hiding a child's 'indiscretion.'
Then Alex would dress and ready himself for school as she returned to the task of fixing breakfast for the family and finishing the preparation and packing of his sack lunch.
Some mornings were worse, though. Those mornings when he'd done more than just wet the bed. Those were the days when he couldn't keep himself from crying when she walked boldly into his room.
His grandma hadn't been less kind then. Just exasperated by his reaction to his lack of control.
"Stop sniveling and get up," she'd order. "It's nothing to cry about. We'll have you clean in a few minutes."
He'd known she would help him to scrub away that smell--even if it meant a prolonged bath that made him late for school. She'd be no less kind with him as she gathered up sheets that reeked of shit. But somehow the sting wasn't as easily soothed when the accident was more than pee...
His grandmother was an expert at writing notes for him. Wonderful notes full of logical reasons why he was late arriving at school. But he'd be far too aware of his own culpability as he stood near the teacher's desk and passed her the scrap of paper. Alex would feel his cheeks flaming as the other kids in the room stared at him.
He'd finally learned how to combat the constant teasing and misery he experienced at school. It was better to be the one making a fool of himself than to have the other kids do it for him. So Alex McLean became the class clown. And he was very good at it.
For a time the bed-wetting seemed to almost disappear--and the other more awful accidents were absent from his life.
But his new behavior didn't endear him to teachers or other administrators. Now he spent much of his time in the principal's office--being reprimanded for disrupting class. He'd be kept after school frequently as punishment for some outrageous prank.
The accidents came back--with a vengeance.
A.J.'s grandmother had been his strongest supporter when it came to his budding as a performer. Her encouragement and praise helped Alex gain confidence. Soon he was performing all the time--singing and dancing for crowds of strangers.
The other young performers started to become familiar faces. Alex began to make some friends. Suddenly what happened at school didn't seem as important...
And the more he relaxed about school, the better things seem to be. The daily battles to survive the teasing didn't seem to matter. Being funny and the center of attention became almost easy for the youth. It still was painful when he was teased--about his height or other issues--but he became better at hiding his pain. And he could turn any situation into laughter.
And A.J.'s grandmother had been there--taking him to school and to the contests and other performances. Dragging him everywhere he needed to be with determination and her own brand of warmth.
Eventually the soiling of the bed stopped. The cessation of bed-wetting wasn't far behind.
"A.J.?" Brian's quietly questioning voice broke A.J.'s thoughts.
"Fuck," A.J. breathed softly. "Sorry Brian."
"Don't worry about it," Brian said, putting a gentle hand on one of A.J.'s shoulders.
A.J. wanted to break into tears--just like those times when he'd been unable to stop his emotion from showing. He swallowed and bit his lip.
A.J. blinked and found himself focusing on the reflection of a smiling Brian. How in hell could Brian smile at a time like this? He had to hate this smell and mess...
"Did you know," Brian was saying, catching A.J.'s full attention, "that some people find poop kind of sexy?" There was almost a 'flirty' lilt to his words. Brian seemed to be gently teasing A.J.
There was a beat of silence.
"Seriously? I don't think I see that," A.J. said, the poop reference finally registering in his brain.
"Different strokes," Brian replied, still smiling at A.J. in the mirror, his hands now both rubbing A.J.'s shoulders.
"Can I help you clean up, A.J.?" Brian asked gently.
A.J. considered. He was still feeling lousy from his antics of the previous night. And he certainly didn't want the maid to discover this!
"Yeah. I'd really appreciate it, Bri," he said, dropping his head. He was ashamed. This wasn't how he wanted his friend to see him...
Brian helped him step out of his p.j.s. while A.J. leaned forward and clung to the bathroom counter.
A.J. shut his eyes and suppressed a groan. This was awful. He could hear Brian moving around. Then he heard the tap running. He couldn't bring himself to open his eyes.
Then A.J. shuddered as he felt the gentle pressure of something warm and damp wiping at his butt and legs.
There was the sound of water again, rushing into the sink. A.J. could feel the steam. Then the ministrations continued. There was a strong smell of soap now, mingling with the scent of A.J.'s shit.
"You'll need a shower--or maybe a bath would be better," Brian was saying to him.
A.J. opened his eyes and turned to face his friend. "Man, Brian, this is one of the nicest things anyone has ever done for me. When my grandma died, I guess I thought..." his husky voice trailed off.
"Do you remember telling me about that?" Brian asked him.
A.J. shook his head. He didn't remember telling anyone about his secret past!
"After we got to be friends you had an accident. Peed the bed--and worried about the other guys finding out. You told me all about it."
A.J. shot Brian a rueful grin. "Yeah, well that wasn't the worst of it. I used to crap the bed, too. And she always had to clean up my mess. Geez."
"She loved you," Brian answered. "And so do I. I'll always care about you, A.J. I'm just sorry you're so..."
"Yeah, I'm fucked up, Brian. I need to get some help."
They leaned their heads together.
"I'm your friend, A.J. I'm glad to help you out."
"This is nice," A.J. said. He wasn't quite sure what he was referring to. The warmth of leaning into Brian? The erotic pleasure of being cleaned up in the most personal way possible? The relief of having someone to depend on? Or perhaps something less simple to define...
"I'm trying, Brian."
Brian cleared his throat. "You need to try harder, Alex," he said.
A.J. saw a quick flash of his grandmother's face. He wondered if he was really losing it now.
"I'll get there sooner or later," he whispered. "Somehow."
A.J. thought back to the days when he'd somehow conquered his bed-wetting (and bed shitting). How had it happened, exactly?
"We'll figure it out," Brian said. "Don't dwell on it now. You get in the bath and I'll draw it for you."
Later Brian had stripped the soiled linen (gathering the sheets in much the same way A.J.'s grandmother had used to do) and then helped a fresh-bathed A.J. into the other bed and climbed in beside him.
A.J. shoved his naked ass into the curve of Brian's body. He was drowsy and warm and ready to snuggle off to sleep.
"You'll be okay," A.J. heard someone say.
And it was probably Brian speaking to him. But it might have been his grandmother...
``the end``-back to top of page-