After a couple of trying days at the Baxter’s farm Tad and Blue are at the end of their patience. Blue feels like Ella and Nick just want to play shopkeepers as if they were 3 years old. Neither Blue nor Tad can get them to commit to a direction and it has frustrated them both.
They have made up half a dozen sample recipes, given them the costings for various volumes and left them to have a think.
“There is all that equipment going to waste. We should approach their dad and make an offer to rent it and the space.” Tad says.
“He won’t go for it. The whole point was to get his kids into a business.” Blue says.
“Fuck them. They have no clue and are slowing us down. We could be up and running and selling in a few outlets in no time.” Tad says.
“We need to give them a little more time. They are starting to understand how much is involved. I am sure they’ll work out what they want soon.” Blue says.
“You’re as frustrated as I am. I leave in a week and we’ll be nowhere. If they haven’t made a decision by Monday then I’m out.” Tad says.
“I’m back at the bakery Monday.” Blue says.
“I’m not dealing with dumb and dumber on my own.” Tad rants.
“Calm down. We’re being paid and we’re getting experience. What’s the problem?” Blue asks feeling as frustrated with Tad as he does with the Baxter pair.
Tad stops the car and bangs his fists on the wheel. He is so wound up he needs to calm down before he causes an accident. Blue puts his hand on Tad’s back to try and calm him and they both jump from the electricity. Tad looks at Blue and without saying a word they both get out the car and walk into the woods.
Tad pushes Blue back against a tree and their mouths meet. Blue runs his hands through Tad’s hair and holds his face closer and groans. Tad pushes Blue back again kissing him hard and biting at his lip.
With barely a warm up Tad is inside Blue, his legs round Tad’s waist, Blue’s back against the tree. Tad is grunting hard with each thrust and Blue is groaning like crazy with every thrust.
“Fuck, fuck, fuck me.” Blue cries out.
“Fuck you have a great ass.” Tad groans and fills Blue.
“Fuck that was hot.” Blue says getting back in the car.
“My tension is gone.” Tad laughs.
“We won’t tell Larry.” Blue says.
“No we won’t.” Tad says soberly. He looks over at Blue and melts a little inside, how did he not notice just how hot Blue was.
Blue is looking back and thinking the same. It’s his first real experience of angry sex and he loved it.
He’s feeling guilty about Larry though. He’s been clear to him that he doesn’t see them as a relationship but he knows Larry has hope and he shouldn’t have been with Tad.
Blue is quiet the rest of the ride home. He’s not used to being the one in the wrong, not used to being the one to s someone else over and it stings. As moments of madness go it was incredible and if Tad was anyone other than Larry’s brother it would have been fine.
“It can’t happen again.” Blue says sadly getting out the car.
“No. I have a lot more to lose than you.” Tad says and Blue nods.
Blue makes himself some dinner and then goes to look around upstairs to see the progress. Wilson said they only need another week for the full team and then a couple of odd days to finish off. Blue is impressed and excited that he’ll soon have his home.
He didn’t feel like he really got to enjoy his house at school. Furnishing it wasn’t much fun as it was just for him, I was homely but more functional than he would have liked. The prospect of having Cheryl, ocean, Gervais and Robin for the summer has him very excited. He can’t wait to decorate a room for Ocean and make a beautiful guest room for Cheryl to use.
Robin and Gervais have given him input on the study furnishings and the electronics they think Blue needs for the rest of the house. Blue would be happy without a TV at all. He loves reading by the fire and using his tablet for films but he understands a television with good sound will be better for the group.
Larry turns up around 8 and Blue grins, he is happy to see him.
“Your dad invited me to your leaving dinner tomorrow. I’m bringing dessert.” Blue says with a smile.
“Yummy. I’ll miss you when I’m back at school.” Larry says.
“You’ll be so busy you barely remember me.” Blue says with a grin.
“I hope so. I am so ready to be back out there.” Larry grins and Blue relaxes, ashamed his ego made him think Larry would be pining for him.
They settle on Blue’s bed to watch a film and Blue promptly falls asleep. Larry smiles at him and strokes his hair. Enjoying watching the sleeping beauty instead of the film.
“I’m pretty tired. Maybe you should go home.” Blue says gently as he wakes having missed half the movie.
“Yeah I was planning to. Didn’t want to wake you.” Larry says smoothing Blue’s hair.
“Sorry.” Blue says.
“It’s fine. I’ve heard from Tad how frustrating work is.” Larry says and Blue tenses at the mention of Tad.
“Nightmare. I just want to make yummy treats but it is good practice for my own business.” Blue says.
“See you tomorrow.” Larry says and kisses Blue’s forehead, Blue shakes himself awake enough to undress and clean his teeth and crashes out again the second his head hits the pillow.
Naked yoga clears Blue’s head in the morning and he’s soon cooking up a dessert and a mountain of cookies and biscotti for Larry to take back to school with him. Blue feels another pang for Andy. He was sad Andy wasn’t on the call the other night, it would have been nice to hear from him.
Blue pulls the last tray of cookies from the oven and sets them to cool and sits down at the table and breaks down and calls Andy.
Andy answers and promptly burst into tears.
“Can you call me in ten minutes?” Andy asks between sobs, wanting to go to Robin’s to take the call so Bea and Chris don’t see.
“Sure.” Blue says shocked at Andy’s reaction and how thin and pale he looks. Blue busies himself for a few minutes, checking the fire and settling down in a comfy chair.
“Sorry about that. I didn’t want Chris or Bea to see and make a stink.” Andy says the tears starting up again.
“I didn’t think of that. I forgot you’re dating Chris.” Blue says.
“Why are you calling? I mean I am really glad you called. Why now?” Andy asks.
“I was baking. A friend goes back to college tomorrow and I was making a mound of treats and I thought of you. I’ve thought of you a lot recently and I was sad you weren’t around when I spoke to the others the other night. I just wanted to see you, to hear your voice. I’ve missed you.” Blue says.
“Show me the food.” Andy laughs and Blue sweeps round his kitchen.
“Made you hungry?” Blue asks.
“Starving, no one feeds me like you. That kitchen looks homely, I love the fire.” Andy says as Blue returns to his face.
“You would love it here. Do you want to see my land?” Blue asks.
“Yeah I want to know everything.” Andy says wiping away more tears, he’s an emotional wreck. He just can’t hold back his feelings any more.
Blue takes him on a tour of the kitchen garden and tells all his plans, asking for advice and they share ideas. He shows the poly tunnels that Blue has mostly repaired and the new land that Gervais gave him.
“How about you? How is school? And Chris?” Blue asks gently as he gets back indoors.
Andy pours his heart out about everything, his relationship with Chris, what happened over winter break, Gervais shock announcement and how his new school is going. He cries and cries and Blue watches shocked. He’d been told Spence was in a bad way but Andy is a total wreck.
“I hate to say it but Chris is back to his worst self and you are drowning. You need to break up now.” Blue says.
“I love him. It’s just a bad patch. He’s been so stressed with his family situation. He needs me.” Andy says.
“But what do you get out of it? You sound like me when I was with George, on eggshells.” Blue says and Andy just cries some more.
“What if I break up with him and he turns Clara against me and she deletes me like she did you? I’d not be able to see Katelyn or Roe.” Andy sobs.
“She can’t and won’t stop you seeing your family. Talk to her. She never took my side in relationships, what makes you think she’d be on Chris’s side?” Blue asks.
Andy can’t answer. He can’t tell Blue how supportive Clara is to Chris and Bea, how encouraging she is. How she never criticizes them the way she did Blue.
“Thanks for calling. I don’t have anyone to talk to. I have missed you so much Blue. I know we were barely friends when you left but a thousand times a day I’d talk to you in my head, I’d wonder what you’d say about something or want to show you something.” Andy says.
“I wanted to talk through the garden ideas With I was mad at you as much as anyone when I left and I wanted to follow my dream alone. I was mad at you for getting started without me but now I’m here and getting ready to Plant it feels wrong without you. I’ve been trying to work out what was bugging me and why 1 was delaying getting properly started.” Blue says.
“I’m crazy jealous. All that land. Your contacts, the new farmers market, the ice-cream. You’re living our dream.” Andy says.
“I am. Now I’m happy I’m feeling a lot more forgiving. Not to my family, Birch told me what it was like over break and you’ve confirmed it by what you have and haven’t said. The rest of you though, if I can forgive Spence I can forgive you.” Blue says.
“I punched Spence. I was so mad at him when I found out it was him that drove you away.” Andy says ashamed.
“l don’t think it hurt.” Blue laughs.
“Maybe not but it was a terrible thing to do. Not when I knew Spence was so down. How do you always get things so right, treat people so well? Without being annoyingly smug?” Andy asks laughing.
“I’m not getting it right, right now. Not treating people right at all.” Blue says and tells Andy all about Larry and Tad.
“I should tell you off for juggling with their emotions but I feel kind of proud of you. You’re seeing a guy casually, not setting up home, not making plans and you’ve enjoyed a hot fuck with his brother on the side. You were sleeping with Gervais during the start of you seeing that guy, so he had no expectations of exclusivity. It’s shady but not that bad. I’m glad you’re having fun and being a bit more human.” Andy says.
“It’s a huge weight off not trying to make something work. You should try it.” Blue says.
“Just talking to you is making me feel stronger. I miss you and Spence. I hate that he and I can’t be friends.” Andy says.
“You can and you should be. Yeah him begging for you to go back to him was terrible but he’s not going to do it again. You two have been through so much together, no one knows you like he does. And why not spend some time with Robin and Gervais? You’ve been friends with Robin your whole life. He’s going through a breakup and could use the support.” Blue says.
“I’ve messed up with everyone. It feels too late and Chris doesn’t like me coming down here too much because of Gervais. He doesn’t trust Spence, which is fair.” Andy says.
“Stand up to him. Where has confident, gregarious Andy gone?” Blue asks gently.
“Wow this is déja vu from when you were with George. I need to ask Robin for a room.” Andy says.
“Or get Chris and Bea to move on.” Blue says.
Andy nods and then sighs at the uphill battle he is facing.
“You guys okay?” Robin asks coming in.
“Yeah. I need to go soon, almost out of battery and need to shower before going to Mikes.” Blue says.
“Could I stay here? If I needed to?” Andy asks.
“Of course. But you should get Chris to move out and Bea. Maybe Gervais will reject them.” Robin grins.
“I wish I’d seen their faces.” Blue says.
“It was pretty funny. Given it was a total surprise George, Dylan and I all acted like humans and Chris and Bea not so much.” Andy grins.
“Oh my god, you’re still in there.” Robin says with a smile and Andy finally gets one of his big grins on his face.
“Andy, Robin can give you my number. Call me any time.” Blue says.
“You sure? I might call ten times a day.” Andy says.
“I hope you will.” Blue says and ends the call.
Blue smiles he feels a lot lighter now. It wasn’t right to have cleared the air with Spence and not Andy. He gets in the shower and thinks about how he’s gone from wanting to hide this place from everyone to feeling the need to share it with his friends. Andy and Gervais always believed in his dream and it didn’t feel right without them.
Blue is distracted through dinner. Heidi is there with Gladys and Abby and is telling everyone how well the expansion has gone at the bakery and how excited she is for the reopening. Blue is trying to be enthusiastic but is not keen on the early starts and long days.
“Don’t look so glum. I have a bunch of staff hired and you just need to help train them on the soups.” Heidi says seeing Blue’s tired face.
“What about cheesecake?” Blue asks.
“You can make your own hours for that.” Heidi says.
“Sounds like I’ve been fired again.” Blue says.
“I hear great things from Arnold about the ice-cream business. I’m sure you’ll have your hands full with that.” Mike says.
“Are you joking?” Tad asks.
“What?” Mike asks.
“Ella and Nick are a nightmare. They couldn’t choose a breadstick from a packet.” Tad says.
“It’s true we’re getting nowhere fast and it’ll be slower when Tad leaves.” Blue says.
“I heard the test batches went very well. He loved the butter pecan and the dark chocolate with raspberry.” Mike says.
“Sounds amazing.” Larry says with a smile.
“All of it tastes good but we need them to choose a direction or let us run the business.” Tad says and Blue nods.
“I have got a basic recipe for vanilla, chocolate and strawberry but we need to know if they want sweet kid’s flavors or more sophisticated ones. Tad and I suggest a direction and we give the options and costs and try and push them into market research and they fall apart and start asking about other options. They need to decide what they want.” Blue says.
“I think we should ask Arnold if we can rent the space and run it ourselves. He has all that equipment gathering dust.” Tad says.
“I said we can’t do that. And it isn’t like ether of us has a passion for it.” Blue says.
“I’m beginning to.” Tad says.
Larry watches as the pair bat back and forth and can’t quite put his finger on the change between them. Maybe it’s just working together. Or maybe Gervais not being around.
“I’ll talk with him. What do you think they could do?” Mike asks.
“Gladys wants an ice-cream shop in town. They could run one with some help. They’d be good with kids, hosting birthday parties and the like.” Blue says.
“That sounds good. Those Baxter kids are pretty to look at.” Gladys says.
“That wouldn’t hurt my trade but I would like to offer ice-cream in summer.” Heidi says.
“Leave it with me.” Abby says and Tad grins, he really wants to show his dad what he can do.
Outside at the end of the evening Blue and Larry are saying goodbye.
“I’ll miss you. We’ve had fun.” Blue says.
“Same.” Larry says and leans in to kiss Blue gently.
“Enjoy your cookies. See you for a weekend sometime maybe.” Blue says.
“You bet. I’d love you to come and visit me at school.” Larry says.
“That would be good. Yeah, I’d love a night clubbing and partying. It’s been too long since I dances my ass off.” Blue grins.
“I’ll call you. Thanks for everything.” Larry says and they share a final hug.
Blue enjoys a solo Sunday. He heads to the vegan restaurant that he went to with Tad and enjoys a big lunch of his favorite foods. He’s missed having Cheryl’s café as his go to place and hopes this place will be a good substitute. Not that he should be eating out. He needs to get some chickens and he needs to get growing more.
As he walks to his car he sees a poster for a gymnastics competition. He does a double take as Will’s face is on the poster. He checks the details and realizes it is Will’s college team against 3 other schools. He takes a picture of the poster and heads home with a huge smile on his face.