CHAPTER TITLE: Ala Gertrude Stein & Alice B._Seventy-Seven of One Hundred
RATING: this chapter: PG
WORD COUNT: this chapter: 1,650
WARNINGS: this chapter: none_Jamey POV
DISCLAIMER: Nothing I can say that hasn’t been said already? Not mine
Originally Beta’ed by herefordroad, all subsequent mistakes are mine
Story throughout contains excerpts from The Brian Kinney Operating Manual including commentary from the Editors
SUMMARY FROM THE EDITORS: ‘These gatherings at first were just painter friends of Justin’s dropping by for a cold beer. But…’
Jameson sees the writing on the wall
AUTHOR‘S NOTES: This story projects 59 years into the future and reflects all that that entails, many of the loose ends are tied-up. I dance with POV, I dance with time, in essence, I just dance to the song Brian & Justin sang to me.
Contains: Brian_others, Justin_others. They grow old, they are always together for just as long as time allows, but, ultimately, they will die.
As someone wise once said, ‘In the end, it’s all about Brian and Justin’ and I can only agree
A Time From Now
Ala Gertrude Stein & Alice B.
Six Months Later - Around Five & 1/ 2 Years - New York
Leaning on the railing of one of his favorite places in the world, within the relative calm of the penthouse’s little terrace with its magnificent views of downtown, allowing the cool breeze to clear his head before returning to the still-audible-even-with-the-French-door-c
It had taken awhile, but once Brian had finally gotten his ass in gear and moved to New York, he and Justin had gathered around them an interesting cadre of people who embodied all of the basic creative arts categories, categories such as the visual arts which were somewhat overly represented by the painters and the sculptors and the designers, the verbal arts which were adequately represented by the poets and the writers and the editors and…whatever and the theatre arts which were perfectly represented by the actors and the dancers, the directors and the stagehands and… also whatever. Last, but certainly never least, there was the culinary arts category, which was solely and most awesomely represented by him, Jameson Paul Gwyneth, and that right there, in and of itself, made him unique. And seriously, what else had ever felt so fated, so fabulous, so as-it-should-be? What indeed.
And how much did Justin and Brian enjoy being at the center of all the attention? Maybe Brian a little more than Justin, but maybe not, Justin could also be a pretty decent crowd whore when he chose to be and now, they could do just that within the privacy and comfort of their very own penthouse which had, seriously, the most freaking fabulous views of downtown ever. So now, if they wanted, they could conveniently stay exactly where they were, allowing everyone else to come to them. Seriously, how right was that?
Returning inside, scanning the room for a moment, he was an observer, watching, remembering, remembering how at first, these evenings had been just painter friends of Justin’s dropping by for a cold beer, but since Justin’s friends had known people who knew other people and none of them had a penthouse, slowly a habit, a kind of ritual began to form. And sure, for awhile, maybe it was all about getting to hanging out with the rich guys, but soon enough it was all about the respect and understanding and acceptance found here, because they all knew no matter how shitty their week had been, there would always be Thursday evenings at Brian and Justin’s and knowing that helped get them through. So, once it had gotten going, there had been no stopping it and the rest was history
Jamey wandered from room to room, taking mental notes of who this particular Thursday evening’s festivities included.
‘Okay…let me see, there’s that guy who just got his book published, the science fiction thriller…whatshisname. Wait…Terrance…Terrance Holden and his partner of two decades…Tony something, a costume designer for that little theater group over on 14th…Tony…Adams, that’s him.’
‘And then there’s that very famous Merce Cunningham dancer, Marissa something. I don’t actually know her, but she must be fantastic, I mean just look at that body on her…ouch and sweetly, she’s brought her husband along and seriously, I have no clue who he is or what he does except to note that he is One Serious Hunk.
‘Moving right along, before I overheat myself, there is, of course, the little painter group plus their hanger-ons grouped around Justin. Can I remember any of their names? Well, naturally …Jake and Lauren, newly married and how adorable is that? And naturally …Cory and Thom, the twins, be still my beating heart. But I don’t know…him or sadly…him or even…her, although I probably should.. Oooh, Ricci’s and Brendan are here, our little San Francisco contingency, very interesting and how could I not have known that? Most of them are young, young as us and very attentive, hanging on to Justin every word. So cute. Tristan and Mychael must think themselves very cool. I certainly know I always do when I’m hanging on to Justin’s every word.’
And he was their informal caterer, friend to friend, and had been since he’d been well enough along in culinary school to have a clue what he was doing, like a couple of months ago. He needed the experience, enjoyed being the center of attention once in awhile himself and they needed help with the food. Heading to the bar, leaning against its black leather and chromed surface, he poured himself a drink and he continued to scanning of all the pretty pretty people many of who were, he realized, at their beginnings, all the young and soon to be movers and shakers of the art world and beyond. Justin attracted a younger crowd, the around 20 to 30 demographic, like him and Toby, Tristan and Mychael, Ricci and Brendan. All those at their beginnings.
While Brian, in the living room with his own little group, attracted a somewhat older crowd, the around 35 to 45 demographic and, for the most part, they were the alreadys, not becoming anything, they had already become. Like Brian. He was an entrepreneur, a very successful one at that and a note-worthy businessman with, as Justin had informed him, no conceivable limits. Must be nice.
With one last scan, Jameson found who he was actually looking for, his own sweet Toby with some way-too-cute painter guy. Dude probably wanted Toby to pose for him or…something, so he downed his drink, and leaving his glass on the bar, he made his way to his partner of one whole and utterly blissful year. On his way, he passed by the dining table spread out with the food he and Toby, with the help of Mychael and Tristan, had prepared and he made some more mental notes, what had been eaten, what hadn‘t been eaten. He was pleased to see that nothing was being entirely ignored. Either this was one very hungry crowd or they were becoming seriously good cooks or maybe it was just a little of both.
He smiled to Toby and his seriously cute painter as he approached them and the painter -- he found out that his full name was Patton Mitchell McAllister III when he and Toby took him home with them -- bowed his head and proceeded to praise him for his food, including presentation, while Toby graciously stood back and smiled.
Patton confided, “I have a little dinner party I’m trying to pull together in about three weeks and if you’re available, I’d like to hire you guys for the catering.”
“Ah well…see, we could come and help you, like we do with Brian and Justin,” Jameson said, “and then, once I graduate and we get all the paperwork and permits and…whatever in order, then you’ll be perfectly free to hire us, but until then…friend to friend, okay?” And Patton couldn’t have been more pleased. “Not on a Thursday though, right?”
Patton laughed, said, “Hell no, I doubt anyone we know will ever do anything else on a Thursday night ever. Thursdays belong to Brian and Justin.”
May it never be otherwise.
The Brian Kinney Operating Manual - A Life Examined
the chapter titled - ‘ Brian & Others - As to Their Outcome’
And so it begins, one party catered, one next event made fabulous and eventually one reputation made secure. It’s that realness, a sort of down-to-earth gentleness that helps Jameson find his place within the New York art world. Well, that and the invaluable exposure he receives through the gratefully endless Thursday evenings he’ll spend at Brian and Justin‘s. But in the final analysis, the truth of Jameson’s success will be their complete acceptance of him as one of them. Truth is, they really just like the guy. New Yorkers just seem to so sweetly respond to that part of Kansas that never seems to completely leave him no matter how long he lives among them. As they grow in reputation, carving out their place in their respective fields, he will be right there with them doing the same. One day Brian will invest in Jameson’s arts-events business, thereby allowing him to take it to the next level, the first of what will ultimately become three restaurants, which for him has always be the dream.
However, the catering business will remain and he’ll thrive as the chef for all his friends’ events, accompanying them through all of their milestones, their awards dinners and after-theatre parties and opening-night gallery shows, through all of their weddings, birthdays and anniversaries. Through it all, he will always be there and unlike many others who will come and go, for a time in favor, for a time not, Jameson will endure. Ever the chameleon, he will dance to the music that reflects the times and he will succeed and while Kansas will live in him always, he will never return there, none of them will.
It’s just the beginning for many of Brian and Justin‘s friends, even for the older ones who all still have a long way to go, but with each dinner party that’s catered with nothing left over, with each audition that secures a meaningful role, with each season that ends in a triumph, with each sculpture commissioned and executed to acclaim, and with each enterprise well funded and successful…one by one by one, eventually each one of them will become a reputation secured, each one of them will become a life well lived.
Next Chapter: Justin experiences the ending of the old way and the beginning of the new
for original post & additional chapters, please see here