Cary held his breath as he watched Rickerson work his way through their new website. Everything he and Kelly had discussed and worked on now hung in the balance. If Rickerson rejected it… He didn’t want to think about that. Yes he was being selfish, he knew that, but he had come to value the times he and Kelly had been together even if it had been just through emails and then, once there was an actual site to visit, by IMs.

What had started out as just a business arrangement, debating back and forth about what to add, delete or change about the site, has slowly developed into a friendship of sorts. They never let things turn personal, Cary knew no more about Kelly on that level than he had the first day he’d contacted him. But they had had sometimes very animated discussions on everything from politics to differences between life in a small city as compared to a large one or a small town. In the process Cary had surmised one thing although he’d never asked and Kelly had never said, his new friend was, he was very certain, gay.

Closeted he be willing to bet, maybe even young and still living at home with parents that wouldn’t be able to understand that their darling son wasn’t going to make them proud grandparents. He remembered his own conversation with his family when he’d finally admitted to them that he liked men, not women. Almost the first words out of his mother’s mouth had been about the grandchildren she’d never have to spoil and coddle.

Another thing that made him think that Kelly was young was his momentary hesitation at times when they were discussing alterations to the site. It was almost as if he were stopping to look something up. Not that that had bothered him. He tended to admire people who knew their limitations and were willing to do whatever it took to work past them. But whether Kelly was young and still learning or a seasoned professional who had just been checking facts didn’t really matter. In the end he had come up with what Cary thought was the perfect website for the company. Now he just prayed Rickerson agreed.

Letting out the breath he’d been holding Cary grinned in delight when Rickerson turned to look at him and said very succinctly, “Perfect.”

“I agree,” Cary replied. “I’ll get in touch with Mr. Moriarty immediately to let him know he can do what he needs to so that it’s up and running as soon as possible.”

The minute Rickerson dismissed him Cary hurried back to his office and sent off an email. ‘Done and done. It’s a go. Let me know when you’re finished on your end and we can celebrate.’

A few minutes later his mail server dinged to tell him he had a message. He opened the message from Kelly and laughed. It said, ‘You bring the champagne, I’ll get the caviar.’

‘Tell me where to meet you and I’ll be there, bottle in hand.’ He sent back in joking response.

His eyes widened in shock when he got the reply. ‘741 South Holly, #301, 7:00’. He immediately asked, ‘For real?” And then he waited. An hour later, having gotten nothing back and seeing that it was time to leave for home he finally shut down his computer and headed out. As he stepped onto the sidewalk he paused and then shook his head. “Just a joke in response to a joke,” he muttered and turned left as always towards the parking garage and then to head for home.

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