Sins of the Father

by Julnick


"You smell like sweat, sunscreen and bug spray..."

Tem grinned. "Eau de Tem..."

"Mmm... I like it..." John kissed him again. The sun was sending long shadows through the trees. Tem pulled back enough to focus his eyes on John's face.

"God, you're good at that..."

John smiled. "I keep in practice..." He leaned in once more, then turned his attention to Tem's ear. Tem moaned.

"Stop..."

"Why?" Tem was squirming in his arms.

"Because..."

"Mm, not good enough, you lose..."

Tem whimpered as John's body pressed against his, gentle teeth nibbling his ear. His fingers flexed then curled against John's back.

"Please..."

John pulled back. "Please what?"

Tem looked pleadingly into his eyes. "Please stop?"

John considered. "I ask again, why?"

Tem bit his lip, "Because... We can't *fuck*." He drew out the final word, savoring it. John swatted him hard. The force of it drove Tem's hips harder into John's and he gasped.

"Watch your language," John said with mock sternness. "Besides, who says we can't... *fuck*?" He mimicked Tem's emphasis.

Tem stepped back and stared at him, eyes wide. "John! You said a bad word!"

John slid his hands over Tem's hips, pulling him close again. "So spank me."

Tem grinned. "I should, just." They kissed again. Tem pulled away, breathless. "We have to set camp," he said, his voice husky. A distant bellowing woof carried through the trees.

"We can set it later."

"It'll be dark," Tem protested, stepping back again.

John frowned. "We can set it in the dark." He slid a hand into Tem's waistband and tugged him forward. "Come here."

"No..." Tem squirmed. John's hand moved lower. "We won't... Be able... Stop! You're distracting me!" John only smiled. "What about Wolf?" Tem insisted.

John laughed. "It's okay, honey, I had the talk with him, he knows all about it..."

Tem gave him a dirty look.

"He'll find us, Tem, he knows where we are." John began working on Tem's fly.

"Johhhn..." Tem whined.

"Whaaat?"

"We don't even have a blanket!"

John grinned. "We're men, we'll rough it."

Tem grumbled something incomprehensible.

"Is this the big tough Navy Seal? Hiked fifty miles through the jungle? Every day? In the snow? Uphill both ways?"

Tem made a face. "Well, we didn't have *sex*."

John laughed and kissed him roughly. "I guarantee, the ground will be the *last* thing on your mind in oh...say...thirty seconds..." He gave Tem's neck a gentle bite and slid his hand down the front of Tem's shorts.

Tem moaned. "Wait... Wait..." He pushed John's hand away weakly.

"What?"

Tem sat down on the ground and kicked off his hiking boots. He quickly added his socks and shirt to the pile. John watched him strip, smiling. The late afternoon sun cast golden light on his lithe, sculpted body. Then he grabbed John's shoelaces and began untying them as well. Soon John's own boots and socks were in Tem's quickly mounting pile.

Tem scrambled to his feet again, eyes glowing. He reached under John's shirt and slid it up and over his head. John raised his arms, allowing Tem to divest him of his clothes. He felt a certain thrill of excitement as the last of his clothing fell onto the pile, and he stood, exposed, in the warm sunlight. Tem, still in his shorts, pressed his body against John's, kissing him deeply.

John slid his hands over Tem's back, feeling the muscles shift beneath his palms as Tem's own hands moved over his back and down. Tem kissed John's neck, his chest. Leaving a trail of butterfly kisses down his ribs and belly. His hands cupped John's hips and John rested his hands lightly on Tem's head as Tem knelt, flicking his tongue over John's hot skin.

John moaned softly as he was engulfed in Tem's mouth, teeth neatly shielded, tongue working tirelessly. John closed his eyes, letting himself float on the sensations for a moment, then gently pushed Tem away.

Tem looked up at him, questions in his eyes. But not hurt. He had the trust of six years together. John smiled at him. "Get up."

With the fluid grace of a cat, Tem rose to his feet, still confused. John pulled him into a kiss so long they were both breathless when they separated. "Wait..." he said, and Tem's questions faded.

John slid Tem's shorts to the ground, and Tem stepped out of them, kicking them aside. Carefully, John pushed down Tem's boxers as well, and Tem repeated the process, standing, unashamed, naked in the stretching shadows, the last rays of sunlight giving a golden cast to his perfectly tanned skin. Tanned from head to toe without interruption. The gift of his mother's people. John smiled.

He stepped close and cupped Tem's face in his hands, looking into his emerald eyes. He gently kissed Tem's nose, his forehead, then his lips. A gentle, chaste kiss. Tem closed then opened his eyes slowly. Waiting.

John grasped his shoulders and turned him around. Tem moved obediently. Then stood still, head bowed. John pulled him back close against his body, encircling him with his arms. He kissed the back of Tem's head, then gently put one palm to Tem's forehead and tilted his head back, exposing his neck, which he kissed and nipped. Tem bit his lip, his face twisting with the delicious ache of desire.

"Down..." John whispered in his ear.

Slowly, Tem sank to his knees. John tilted Tem's head back again and bent to kiss him, gently biting Tem's lower lip and letting it slide between his teeth. Tem did the same, and they were both breathing raggedly by the time John pulled away.

"Don't move," he said huskily. Tem closed his eyes.

John found what he needed in his pack, applied it and returned a moment later. He knelt behind Tem and slid his hands around Tem's chest, his fingers working over Tem's nipples, squeezing them slightly. Tem squirmed. John pushed him gently forward and Tem fell onto his hands, dropping his head once more.

John put his right hand on the front of Tem's hip, and carefully guided himself into Tem's tight body. Tem stiffened and arched his back, biting his lip. John pushed him down again, lightly, and Tem dropped to his forearms, laying his head on his hands.

With his left hand, the right still on Tem's hip, John reached around Tem's belly, sliding his hand down and closing it. Tem trembled. Slowly, gently, John slid his hand up and down. Tem freed one of his own hands and clasped it over John's. His palm was hot and sweaty. John continued to stroke, feeling Tem quivering in his arms. His own body ached with need. When he knew Tem would hold the rhythm, he slipped his hand from under Tem's and placed it on Tem's other hip. Tem moaned softly.

Very gently, John began to thrust. Tem pressed back against him and they settled into an easy gait. Pull and thrust. The sun was cresting over the peak of the mountain. The meadow darkened. Their movements became quicker more desperate. John glanced at the sky. It was painted brilliant shades of orange and deep pink-red.

"Look up," John hissed, biting his own lip.

Tem raised his head, gasping. "Oh God..." He shuddered hard, body going taut, back arching. "Oh God..." He clenched his hand in the grass and whimpered.

John smiled and let himself go. Exquisite agony radiated through his belly, his chest, his legs, down to his hands. Breathless, he slowed, then stopped, letting himself feel the throbbing ache, the tremble in Tem's body.

Finally, he withdrew, and Tem pitched forward onto the ground, rolling onto his back.

"Oh my God..." he moaned, staring into the sky and chewing on his lower lip.

The sunset had begun to fade into purplish-blues. John eased himself onto the grass beside Tem. He found himself grinning.

Tem looked over at him and gave him a wry smile. "Pleased with yourself, then?"

"Extremely," he said, grinning even wider.

Tem rolled his eyes, the contagious smile lighting his own face. He laughed.

"What?" John demanded.

"You're certainly full of something tonight..."

John pushed himself onto an elbow. "It's all of this sunshine and fresh mountain air."

Tem rolled his eyes again, smiling smugly. "Yeah... Could be..." He ran a hand over his flat belly. "Or could be eau de Tem..."

*****

John woke first in the morning. He left Tem in the tent and stepped out into the damp grass. Birds were twittering and chirping. A chipmunk scampered onto a nearby rock and regarded him with dewy black eyes. John stood very still as the chipmunk raised its paws in a mock salute, then turned and disappeared into the trees.

He heard a rustling behind him, and Tem crawled out of the tent, yawning.

"Did you bring the dog's food?" asked John.

Tem blinked. "Yeah," he said quickly.

"Where is it?"

"In my pack, I think..."

"He's probably hungry..."

Tem looked uneasy.

John sighed. "Tem did you forget the dog food?"

"No! I had it on my list!"

"When I asked you if you made a list, you said you didn't need one."

Tem opened and closed his mouth.

"I made one anyway..."

"I see. And was dog food on it?"

"Yes,..."

"And are you lying through your teeth?"

Tem looked unhappy. "I'll go back and get it..."

"Tem, why couldn't you just do what I asked you in the first place? Then you wouldn't have forgotten."

"I'm sorry."

"And why do you start lying every time you get in trouble? Do you think that's going to make it easier on you?"

Tem scuffed his foot in the dirt. "No," he said quietly.

"So why do you do it?"

"Don't know..."

John pulled his knife from his pocket and tossed it to Tem. Tem looked at him questioningly.

"Go down to the creek and cut a switch."

"What?" Tem exclaimed, eyes going wide.

"There are willows growing there. Do you know how to pick a switch?"

Tem nodded mutely, his face pale.

"Pick a good one. You don't want me going down there."

Tem swallowed and slowly turned, crossing the meadow.

John made a fire and fixed coffee as he waited for Tem to return.

Tem reappeared about ten minutes later, limping and carrying a stripped switch. John watched him approach.

"What happened to your foot?"

"I stepped on a pinecone," Tem pouted, tossing the switch near John's feet.

John sipped his coffee. "Should have worn shoes, huh? Want coffee?"

Tem shook his head. "Can we get this over with?"

John nodded toward a nearby pine tree. "Go put your nose to that and think for a while, I'm going to finish my coffee, then we'll talk."

Tem stared at him. "You're mean, you know that?"

John smiled. Tem turned and limped to the indicated tree, sighing heavily. John sipped his coffee.

After an eternity, in Tem's world, John called him back to the fire.

"Boxers down."

Tem gave him Bambi eyes. "Can't I keep them? They'll barely make a difference..."

John shook his head, picking up the switch. "Sorry. I want to see what I'm doing."

Tem sighed again and pushed his boxers down. He looked at John.

"Bend over. Keep your hands on your knees."

Looking miserable, Tem slowly did as he was told and bowed his head. John stepped into place behind and to his right.

"Do you even know how to use a switch?" Tem asked, sounding worried.

"Yes, I know how to use a switch," John said, letting the object lie lightly across Tem's bottom. Tem flinched.

John pulled it away and brought it down with a whistling swish. Tem jumped and yelped, straightening immediately and flinging his hands behind him. He rubbed the narrow stripe vigorously.

"Ow! Ow! Ow!" he panted.

"Tem..."

"OW!"

"Tem!"

"Ow! John!"

"TEM! I told you to keep your hands on your knees!"

Slowly, Tem bent again, putting his hands back in place. His entire body was taut waiting for the next stroke. It came with another terrible whistle, and Tem jumped up again, this time catching himself before he clutched his bottom, settling for hugging himself and hopping from foot to foot.

"Ow ow ow OW!"

"Down, Tem!" barked John, laying a stripe across the top of Tem's thighs.

Tem howled, jumping, but he quickly bent, grabbing his knees and holding on tightly.

They got through five more strokes before Tem was upright again, tears streaking his face. Six narrow welts striped his bottom and another crossed his thighs. He spun to face John, holding his injured backside. He was shaking his head.

"No more, please," he sobbed.

John's face softened. "Turn around, Tem."

Tem shook his head more desperately. "No, please, please, John..."

"We're almost finished," he said gently, turning Tem away from him and giving him an easy shove. Crying hard, Tem resumed his position. John watched him tremble for a moment. Then he took a deep breath and turned to face the opposite direction from Tem and moved to put them side to side. He wrapped his right arm around Tem's waist and held him tightly.

Taking another deep breath, he gritted his teeth and raised the switch again. As quickly as he could, he rained down three more strokes on Tem's wriggling bottom. Tem was howling when John threw the switch away from them and pulled him upright and into his arms.

For a few minutes, Tem struggled against John's grasp, but eventually he settled into the embrace and cried himself out into John's shoulder.

*****

They hiked back down to the house together after feeding Wolf a breakfast of fried fish, which Tem watched with some measure of distaste.

Tem was short-tempered the whole way down the mountain. At the seventh time he complained about his shorts rubbing his tender bottom, John snapped back.

"If you would start telling the truth we wouldn't have to deal with this, would we? It's becoming a serious problem with you and it needs to stop. Now. Clear?"

Tem's only reply was a dark scowl, which remained in place the rest of the way to the house. He did, however, stop complaining. John let the conversation lapse into an angry silence.

Wolf, sensing the tension between his owners, didn't bound off into the woods as he usually did but walked quietly a few paces behind Tem the entire trip.

As they headed back up the mountain, with the dog food, Tem muttered a quiet, "Sorry."

John looked at him. "For what?" he asked coolly.

Tem glared at a tree as they passed it. "For lying."

"Okay."

They walked another few minutes in silence.

"And for being an asshole all of the time," Tem said suddenly, keeping his eyes on the ground.

John looked at him and sighed. "Tem..."

"I am," Tem insisted. "There's always some shit you have to deal with and it isn't fair."

"Tem," John hesitated, gathering his thoughts. "If I didn't get something out of being with you, I wouldn't be here."

"A power trip?" Tem said bitterly.

John stopped dead, staring at him. Tem realized he wasn't following and stopped a few paces ahead, turning back toward him.

"What?" John said, his voice dangerously quiet.

Tem seemed to realize he'd crossed a line but something in him was pushing him hard. He forced his face into an angry glare. "You get something out of telling me what to do, punishing me all the time? That's all you ever do. I'm never good."

John blinked, too stunned to answer, too angry to think of the words he wanted to say. Tem was beginning to look nervous.

"Sorry," Tem said quickly. "I am. I'm a shit. Why do you put up with me?"

John closed his eyes, feeling a headache beginning in the front of his skull. "What?" he said again, rubbing his forehead. He forced his eyes open and stared at Tem. "Tem... What the *hell* is going on with you?"

All pretense of machismo was gone from Tem's features. He just looked tired and miserable. "I don't know." He ran a hand through his hair. "I'm sore and I'm hot and my ass *stings*. And I'm tired of it."

"Tired of what?" John asked wearily.

"Of being in trouble."

John took a deep breath, the headache worsening. "Tem you asked me to start spanking you, you can ask me to stop."

Tem swallowed. "I'd still be a shit."

"Tem! You are not a..." John faltered on the word. "You're not a shit. Where is this coming from all of the sudden?"

"You're always angry with me." His tone was small and childlike.

John bit back an angry response, then one of frustration. He sighed. "Tem. I'm rarely angry with you. You just happened to be acting difficult today."

"I'm always difficult."

"I'm amazingly patient," he said wryly. Tem didn't smile. There was silence for a moment. "You weren't difficult last night..."

"So I'm good for a fuck," some of the anger was back in his voice.

John shook his head in confusion. "What the..." He stuttered. He didn't even know what to ask. Anger flared again. "Are you *looking* for a spanking, Temoko?"

Tem glared at him with a mixture of anger and apprehension in his eyes. "Go ahead..." he said, challenge in his tone.

Exasperated and at a loss for what else to do, he said, "Fine, come here." Tem stared at him, looking suddenly horrified. He approached John slowly.

John swallowed. "Drop 'em," he said with more confidence than he felt.

With trembling hands, Tem undid his shorts and pushed them and his boxers to the ground.

"Bend over."

Tem's eyes filled with tears. He turned away from John and gingerly placed his hands on his knees. John looked at him. His skin was crisscrossed with red stripes, some of them still raised. He ran a gentle hand over the marks, and Tem flinched.

"Get up," he said quietly. "Get dressed."

Tem stood and turned to stare at him, something unreadable in his eyes. He abruptly bent and drew up his shorts, tears beginning to fall down his face.

"Tem?" John asked, confused. "I'm not going to spank you while you're still marked." Tem began to shudder, tears falling in earnest. "Does that upset you?"

"You don't want to touch me..."

"Tem..." This entire conversation had made no sense. John hesitated. "Come here."

Tem shook his head quickly. "You hate me! You don't want to touch me! I'm bad!"

John felt a stab of fear. He grabbed Tem's arms and pulled him into an embrace. "You're not bad, Tem. I love you. I don't want to hurt you. Hush. Listen to me." But Tem was nearly hysterical. He fought John's grasp and escaped it, turning from him and running up the path.

John watched him disappear into the forest and blinked. Wolf looked up at him with sad, brown eyes. "Wolf...?" he said, rubbing his temples. "Did I miss the part where we crossed over into the Twilight Zone?"

*****

Tem was at the camp when John arrived. He was lying on his stomach in the shade of some trees. At first, John thought he was asleep. He was silent and unmoving. John circled around to approach him from the front and saw that his eyes were open but staring into space.

"Tem?"

Tem's eyes focused and he looked toward John.

"Can we talk?"

Tem shook his head, and turned away.

"Okay..." John said, mostly to himself. He walked back to the tent, picking up a sturdy twig of pine on his way.

Tem eased himself down to the ground beside John, wincing slightly. John felt an ache of sadness as he watched.

Tem played with the grass, avoiding John's gaze. "Sorry," he murmured.

John slipped an arm around Tem's shoulders, and Tem leaned into him. They were silent for several minutes. Finally, Tem spoke.

"My father used to switch me."

John stiffened. "Why didn't you tell me that?" he asked quietly. He felt Tem shrug.

"I didn't want you to think I was trying to get out of it."

John closed his eyes, pained. He turned and pressed his lips to Tem's hair. "Baby, I wouldn't think that.

"I know," Tem said, sounding infinitely unhappy.

John didn't press the point. "I love you."

"I know." He was quiet for a long time. "I love you, too." There was another silence. "Are you going to spank me again?"

John thought about it. "Do I need to?"

Tem shrugged again. "I was pretty awful to you..."

"Maybe that wasn't entirely your fault..."

Tem didn't answer.

John took Tem's chin in his hand and turned his face to him. He kissed him gently. "Tell you what. When your marks are gone, we'll talk about it."

Tem looked away. "How long will that be?"

John sighed. "Look, Tem. *I* don't need to spank you. Do *you* need me to?"

Tem huddled into a tight ball. "Yes, sir," he said softly.

John looked into the distance for a moment, then uncrossed his legs and straightened them. He patted his thigh. Tem looked at him.

"Come on," John said.

Blinking, Tem rose to his knees and began to undo his shorts. John stayed his hands.

"No," he said gently. "Leave them." Tem frowned and looked ready to protest but John silenced him with a look. "I make the decisions about spankings, remember?"

Tem gave him a wry look. "You only pull that when I disagree with you..."

"And you only disagree when I decide to go easy on you."

"Maybe I don't deserve it easy..."

"That isn't your decision anymore. For your own reasons, and we can discuss them later, you chose to give that decision to me. Generally, when the two of us are in this position, I'm the one thinking more rationally. You are driven by guilt. Which of us probably has the better perspective on what you deserve?"

"But you love me..."

"I do." John ran his hand through Tem's hair. "But that doesn't make me a sheep. I do still maintain the capacity for independent thought, despite your alluring charms..."

The corner of Tem's mouth quirked up. He sighed. "Okay." He crawled across John's lap and dropped his head onto his forearms.

John rested his right hand on the small of Tem's back and carefully smoothed Tem's shorts over his bottom. Tem took a deep breath. John raised his left hand and brought it down ten times, slow, firm, measured swats. Tem jumped and squirmed slightly at each one, but made no sound. John stopped and rested his hand on Tem's bottom once more.

"What are you going to do next time I ask you to do something that disturbs you?"

"Tell you," Tem answered immediately, his voice sounding somewhat strained.

"Good," John said, rubbing Tem's bottom gently.

He raised his hand and delivered ten more swats, then stopped. "We both learned a lesson today. Let's put this behind us, now."

Tem nodded, and John let him up.

Tem got to his knees again and rubbed his backside. "I'm sorry."

"Okay."

The sun was casting long shadows through the trees. Tem reached out and touched the hem of John's shirt. Slowly, his fingers began to work it upward. John placed his hands over Tem's.

"Baby... You're too sore for this, now..."

Tem looked into his eyes. "You didn't let me finish last night..."


~ Julnick

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