We were all going to die.
People ran around the deck, shoving at each other, looking for an escape that they weren’t going to find. They’d said women and children first, and as I was neither I didn’t even consider approaching the lifeboats. I could have barged my way on like some of the older men were, but I didn’t. I’d made sure my mother and sister had their places, and then I’d stepped back, my dark eyes fixed on my mother’s light ones, and then on her forehead, then her hat. I didn’t look away until the tip of the ostrich feather that capped it vanished.
After she was gone, I leant against the railing, watching the insanity unfolding around me. It made no sense to me why so few people were screaming. And even stranger still was the group of four or five young men my age who, despite the gravity of our situation, laughed and jostled one another whilst kicking a sizeable chunk of ice around like a football.
One of them stopped when he saw me. He didn’t look worried at all. Didn’t show any signs of fear. Even in the midst of this cataclysmic event the treacherous sea had led us into, he seemed at ease. Did he not understand what was happening? Did he not know that this vessel we were on was defying those who had called her unsinkable?
His demeanour confused me at first. He ignored the calls for him to come back to the game, opting instead to stare at me. Looking me up and down, licking his lips as though what he saw made his mouth water.
I told myself that it was the frigid night that made me shiver under his gaze, and my imminent end that made my heart thunder in my chest. But I knew that wasn’t it, and my confusion evaporated as soon as I realised that I’d felt this way before in the safe halls of my university. I only had one secret that I hadn’t shared with anyone, and this was it. This feeling I got in my head, heart and…and trousers whenever I looked at certain men.
Ice did its damnedest to trip me when I fled. I searched for a space to think, finding myself in the gymnasium near the entrance to first class. The corner I ended up in was quiet, away from the to and fro traffic, but I quickly realised I wasn’t alone. The man from outside had followed me.
We considered each other without speaking. I wondered if I looked like I was appraising him, because he certainly looked like he was appraising me. He was jacketless, wearing just a plain white shirt, mustard waistcoat – all buttons undone – and dull green britches. He had a grey cloth cap in his hand.
I was wondering what his name might be when he cleared his throat to speak. “It’s sinking.”
That’s all he said. Two words, but I hung on to them as though they were the most profound words ever uttered. I nodded, shrugged, motioned to the door, then shrugged again. He nodded too, and I knew then that his earlier ease came from acceptance. He knew as well as I did that this was the end.
We were living our last hours, maybe even moments. That didn’t frighten me, though. It saddened me. There’d been so much I’d planned to do. I’d wanted to see America. To leave university and marry my work, then later marry a good woman and have a family. None of that would be mine, now.
But maybe…maybe this was a chance to have something which that other version of me would never have been brave enough to take. I was going to die, so why not?
His jaw was rough beneath my fingertips, his smile suppressed but still cocksure. I traced his chapped lips, watched him moisten them as I trailed my fingers over his face, cupping his cheek before combing through his hair. He didn’t resist when I tightened my grip, drew his face to mine.
Our lips met, tentatively, and I waited for the rush of shame, but it didn’t come. What came was a different rush altogether. It was excitement. Need. Lust.
We kissed, sinking deeper into the shadowy corner, breathing raggedly as our hands roamed. His skin felt dry beneath a layer of salty dampness, and his tongue tasted of tobacco and apples. I could feel him grinding against my thigh, hard and twitching. My cock twitched in response.
Back against the wall, I gasped when he broke away. My smooth cheeks stung from the rub of his stubble, and I could just see pinkness beneath the dark shadow around his mouth. He didn’t meet my eyes while he unfastened my trousers. Didn’t look up when I gasped at how readily he sank to his knees to take my cock between his lips.
We were in the middle of hell, but I was in heaven.
I watched, slack-jawed, as he drew in his cheeks, moved his lips up and down my shaft. Sucking, licking, moaning. Cupping my balls with his calloused hand, sneaking a finger further back to caress that most intimate place.
Nothing could have stopped me from thrusting deeper into his throat, holding his head between both of my hands so that I could watch unhindered as I fucked his mouth. I’d touched myself a thousand and one times, but never had I experienced anything like this. All those friends of mine who had relentlessly pursued sexual encounters made sense to me now. Be it a mouth, a cunt or an anus, fucking was marvellous!
My trousers were around my ankles. I’d bent my knees, listening to my companion choke on my cock, bowing my legs at his behest. He reached up, slipping his fingers into my mouth, then dropped his hand straight back to my anus.
As soon as his finger entered me, I came. He took it all in, swallowing my pleasure, moaning, rising, turning me around and pushing me against the wall. I groaned when he licked my tight hole, cried out when his blessedly small cock pushed into me. His arms coiled around my waist and, snapping his hips hard and fast, he fucked me.
It lasted not even a minute, but I knew it would have been something I’d have remembered forever. His breaths exploded over my cheek and he sagged, slipping out, allowing his hot fluids to slip out of me and mingle with mine own on my thighs.
The floor beneath us lurched. We knew this was it. With one last kiss, we righted our clothes and made for the deck. We were separated almost immediately, but I carried that cocksure smile in my mind as I headed for the railings…
He sits across from me now on the RMS Carpathia, his gaze flicking from his father, to me, and then back again every half a minute. I look away, too shy to meet his gaze. My mother strokes my hair, tells me again that I’m her miracle. She asks how I fared during the time we were parted. Finally, I let my eyes meet his. He’s fighting that same smile again, and I know it’s because I’m no longer fighting mine.
“I won’t tell you what happened, Mother,” I say, loud enough to let him hear me. “All I will tell you is, what happened on that ship was life changing, and I wouldn’t alter a moment of it.”