The murder of Quentin’s lover for daring to “come out” devastates Quentin, and he shields himself as best he can from the past, choosing a life of relative solitude. Resigning himself to a life alone, Quentin doesn’t anticipate meeting a young man who shares his passions. Drawn to this man, he realizes how much he misses someone special in his life, and he longs for the days he shared with his former lover. Hesitant to act upon feelings he was certain had died along with his former lover, Quentin is torn between renewed feelings and the fear of being deeply hurt again.
Ely welcomed the man by patting the sand, and the man stretched out, enjoying the warm rays on his skin. He was a handsome man with thick dark hair and Ely estimated him to be a little older than he, twenty-five at the most. Ely didn’t mean to stare, yet he couldn’t seem to take his eyes off this man.
The stranger reached out to shake Ely’s hand and said confidently, “I’m Quentin, Quentin Jones.”
Ely shook his hand and introduced himself as well, still mesmerized by the man’s forwardness. After a period of silence, he found the courage to ask, “What brings you to Galveston, sir?”
“Oh, my goodness, call me Quentin, please.” Quentin continued, “I teach literature at The University of Texas in Houston. I come to Galveston every chance I can, though. I love the beach and the warm waters of the Gulf.”
Ely explained that he was working at the ice cream parlor during the mornings, and came to the beach in the afternoons and evenings. “Stop by,” he boldly invited the man he had just met.
“I’ll do that,” Quentin didn’t hesitate to reply, followed by a wink. Looking Ely directly in the eyes, he asked, “Would you like to see my house. It’s just up the beach.”
Ely didn’t know what to do. This was what he had wanted, yet he had been taught to be wary of strangers. He was suddenly aware that he was staring into Quentin’s eyes which were waiting for an answer.
“I’d love to.”
“Great,” Quentin replied.
Ely followed Quentin up the beach to his house. When they entered, he almost gasped. The house was beautiful, adorned with the most exquisite antiques which Quentin had inherited from his grandparents and parents. Everything seemed to have a place, and everything was in its place.
In a small corner of the library underneath a copy of Moby Dick was a letter addressing Quentin as “The Love of My Life.” It was from two years ago, and from the sketchy timeline Ely could piece together, it appeared that Quentin and another man had an intimate relationship for three years. For Quentin’s sake, he never mentioned that he was his lover, and they always met in secretive locations. As he skimmed the letter, Ely came to the last page which was very disturbing.
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