Unique Excerpt – From “The Bear at the Bar”
By J. Scott Coatsworth
He paid in cash from Colin’s wallet, not wanting to have to show his ID. He hadn’t worked up the courage yet to look at it—it would match his new face, he was sure, and he wasn’t quite ready to deal with that.
He retrieved his coffee and joined David at a semiprivate table by the window. He watched a group of young guys walk by outside. Not one gave him a second look.
“Ok.” David pulled his chair up close to the table. “Tell me what I said to you the night we broke up.”
Dex sighed. Another test. He supposed he would have done the same in David’s shoes. “You said, ‘you’ll never find what you’re looking for until you know what you’re worth, and I can’t do that for you.’”
David shook his head. “Shit, Dex, I always thought you were a little too devoted to the gym, but this is ridiculous. What happened?”
“Hell if I know. So, you believe me?” He drank David in like a man dying of thirst—all of him, his warm brown eyes and skin, the concerned look that made his face look so sweet.
“I still think this could be some elaborate joke, but let’s say yes for the sake of the argument.” He stared out the window as if collecting his thoughts. “Walk me through the last twenty-four hours.”
Dex nodded, grateful. He could feel the weight of his stomach pressed against the table. He tried not to look at his hairy, beefy arms. “I went to work, got sucked off in the copy room at lunch by one of the new interns, went home, hit the bars, and brought this cute go-go trick home for the night.” He sighed. “Then the next morning, this!” He indicated his ridiculous new body.
“Did anything unusual happen?”
“Um, I had a bad salad for dinner at Pronto. And the go-go boy wasn’t all that great in bed. Nothing else I can think of…. Wait.”
“The bear at the bar!”
David smiled. “That sounds promising.”
“This bear came on to me—really out of shape—a fatty.”
David looked him up and down. “Like you’re one to talk.”
“So what happened?”
He snorted. “What do you think happened? I blew him off.”
“Like ‘sorry, not interested’?”
“Like ‘fuck off.’ Twice.”
“Ouch. That’s harsh.” David leaned back, raising an eyebrow.
Dex didn’t like the way David was looking at him. “I know. I just hate when they think—”
“Think what?” David’s eyes bored into his.
“That they’re good enough for me.” Even as he said it, he realized how stuck-up it sounded.
David laughed. “I believe you now—you’re definitely Dex.”