narrrative

The two young lads ran and ran. They ran as if their very lives depended upon their speed, which it probably did. After a time they stopped, exhausted and peered over a small rise. They watched in awe as hundreds of cavalry sped to the Northeast amid clouds of dust and the pounding of many shod horses. They hid in a wash of a small, mostly dry creek which would its way north toward the river, its banks steep enough to conceal them. Not long after the pounding of hooves ceased, the two boys became aware they were not alone. They heard the distinct rustle and heavy breathing of someone concealed close by in a willow thicket.



Prest drew his gun. He knew he had only one remaining bullet, but brandished the pistol as if his ammo were unlimited. “Come out from thar whoever you are! Ah have a gun so don try nuttin’. After a long minute of delay a tall dark negro about the same age as the boys emerged from the bushes. His clothes were filthy and completely in tatters, barely concealing any of his almost purple skin.



“Don’ shoot me sah! I ain’t done nuttin’ ‘cept hide from them rebel cav’ry. Please sah lemme go. Ah gots to be on mah way. Please sah!” The tall dark African, obviously an escaped slave, kept his eyes toward the ground and continually twisted between his nervous hands a straw hat too full of holes to be properly called a hat and seemingly inadequate to shelter out any elements.



“Why shud Ah let you go?” Prest asked. You are obviously a slave who has ran away from his proper master. Ah cud prob’ly receive a fair amount of money for returnin’ you to da proper ‘thorities.



Sean interrupted the Negro’s reply, stepping between the two men and addressing Preston. Put the gun away, Prest. Can’t you see the poor negro is scared shitless! Besides there is no way you can turn him in without someone asking where you are supposed to be. Sean turned to the black man and held out his hand. “I am Sean, what is your name?”



“Well suh, Ah is happy to meet ya. Ah is called Nathan by mos folks, but now that Ah is gonna be free, Ah is gonna use mah African name what my daddy gived me, ‘Mandigo’. He were sold off down south when Ah was onliest five, but Ah ‘member what he tol’ me bout being proud of mah name.” Sean turned his head toward Preston.



“Would you please put the damn gun down! This poor dirty Negro isn’t going to hurt either of us. It looks like he can barely stand.” Well, Nathan, er Mandigo. What did you eat today?”



“Well suh Ah found me some roots and some grubs and some dandyline greens earlier today. Ah is jes fine suh, thank you all for axing.”



“Where are you headed Mandigo?”



“Ah is headed fer Kay-ro, Illinoise, suh. It ain’t too fer now. Folks along the way say Ohio be okay, but Illinois is the place fo folks lak me to be free. And I knows where there is a person in Kay-ro what cud hep me git a job an git started on mah whole new free life. You see, suh dis place Kay-ro, I figer dey mus be rat bout mah bein free dere cus Ah were told it be the same name place as the place where da ol’ ‘gyptian Farohs is from in Africa, dem ol’ black kings lak in da bible, onliest, they spell it da same, but in Illinoise they says it Kay-ro, not Ki-ro.”



“And where is this Cairo located,Mandigo?”



“Thataway!” Pointing. “Norwes’. Jes a little more North to da Hio river, den west and kinda south, I reckon, cuz dat ‘ol river she turns and twists roun’ lak an ‘ol snake. It be on t’other side, bout fitty more mile Ah guess.”



“I thought we were getting close to Louisville.”



“Ah, no suh, beggin yo pardon suh but Louaville dat way, wer dem rebel cav’ry was headed. Ya ax me dey is in a heap a trouble cuz there be Yankees all round dat place, or sos I heerd. Is you a Yankee Sean, suh?”



“Not any more, Mandigo. I don’t know what I am any more. Me and Preston here, he was a rebel. I guess we are now just free men like you wish to be. Free from north or south or war.”



“You means you is deserters? One from both sides of da war? How dat happen?”



“Well, that Sir, is a very long story. If you would care to have supper with us and spend the night with us, I will tell you the whole thing.”



“Well suh. . .



“Now jes, a daggone minute, ” Preston spoke up. We cain’t have. . . Ah mean. . . You ain’t askin’ dis Nig. . . uh. . ta eat wit’ us. Ah cain’t. . . ”



Sean and Nathan spoke at the same time. Mandigo immediately backed off a step.



“Sorry misstuh. Ah did’n mean to interrup you. Ah was jes gonna say it wudden’ be rat me eatin’ wit da white folk.”



“Kin Ah speak with you a minute, Sean?” Preston asked, grasping Sean’s arm and dragging him away a few yards to utter in a harsh whisper. “What da hell ya mean, askin’ a Nigger ta eat with us? Sides the fact that it ain’t fittin’, how you know you can trust him? He’ll prob’ly stab us in the night and steal all we have.”



“Well if he stabbed your slave owning ass in he night you would probably deserve it and that’s why you are so skittish. As for me, I never did anything in my life to hurt a Negro, so why should he hurt me? He is just another poor hungry, man as far as I am concerned and it is only right to ask him to share as we would anyone else, as I did to your Confederate ass that day by the creek. Now I asked him to stay and I am going to ask him again. If you don’t like it you can just stay a ways apart. And please, for the rest of the time he’s here, try not to say Nigger!”



Prest turned away and went about preparing a campsite for the night, mumbling under his breath, “Damn Yankee, goddam Yankee.”



“Sean, what de hell you doin’ in mah pack?”



“I know you’ve got another shirt in here and I am taking it to give to Nathan, er, Mandigo.”



“Damn fucking yankee, damnyankee,” Preston mumbled.



Sean and the negro disappeared down stream and after a while, Prest moved along behind. When he came within sight of them, Preston sat on the bank some fifty yards away and watched them.



The black and Sean were standing in the shallow river facing one another. Sean stripped off the tattered remains of the Negro’s shirt and tossed it aside. The same for Mandigo’s trousers, which were so full of holes that they fell apart as Sean stripped them off. Sean had a wash rag and a scrap of soap he began dipping in the river, laving the slave’s body, starting with the black wiry hair atop his dark head. The black youngster submitted to Sean’s ministrations like a small child, turning this way and that, lifting his arms or spreading his legs.



From his distant perch, Prest saw Sean turn the negro boy’s body and recoil in shock and disgust. Though he couldn’t see what what caused Sean’s reaction, he thought he knew. Someone somewhere in the south had whipped this slave, probably severely, leaving huge ugly scars. Though Prest’s family had always been too poor to afford slaves, Prest had always hoped some day to become wealthy enough to purchase several slaves. Now that was all over. As a deserter from the glorious Army of the Confederacy, he could never show his face down home again. He chuckled to himself as he tried to imagine “down home” folks reaction to him and Sean’s way of life. Breaking out of his reverie, Prest returned his attention to Sean and the Negro.



Sean was washing between Mandigo’s legs, laving his cock and balls and ass. The tall slave feigned disinterist, but even from his distance, Prest could see the Negro’s soft dark penis, the color of a ripe eggplant involuntarily rising and stiffening. The young rebel lad’s first reaction was revulsion that Sean would and could be so intimate with a Ni. . . Negro, but when the black’s manhood began to swell and grow, Prest felt that oh so familiar ache begin in his belly. He couldn’t believe it! Not only was he once again reacting sexually to another man, but this time to a Negro, a slave! Even this reaction was short-lived. Prest began to chuckle at himself when he realized that he was becoming jealous of Sean’s attention to the escaped slave. He watched carefully, though he was some distance away, anxious to see what would develop between the black boy and his lover. He was greatly surprised, however, when Sean merely dried off the black boy and handed him dry clothes. The two turned upstream and Sean waved to Prest as they drew near.



“Hey Prest, look at this. Mandigo doesn’t look like an escaped field hand any more, he looks like a freeman.”



“Yassur Mr Preston, Ahse got new clothes. Dese here is da fustest new clothes Ah ever did have on dis ‘ere black body. Now ah is lookn’ lak Ah is da gen-u-wine free man, not no lowly field nigger.”



Sean, pulled Mandigo by the arm and whispered something in his ear, then spoke aloud. “I have told Mandigo here that he doesn’t have to talk all that shit any more, at least not with us, that he can speak like a normal person. He apparently has been educated as well as you or I, perhaps even better. Isn’t that right Mandigo?”



“If it be awrite with you suh, I will stop playing slave now. Perhaps I will have to resume such behavior among others of your race, but Mr. Sean here assures me that neither of you will be offended if I speak in a way much more natural to me, since it is how my mother taught me to speak. She also taught me to read and write and stole or borrowed many books. You see, Sir, mama had a strong deep faith that some day I would be a free man. Her goal was to prepare me for such a time.”



“Preston was dumbfounded. In all his twenty years he had never heard no Negro speak like a damnyankee. ‘Did your mother know what she was doing was agin’ the law, dat she could’a been whipped, sold or even kilt for teaching you dat stuff?”



“Excuse me for saying so, sir, but slaves have been whipped for a damn site less than education and my daddy was sold south for no reason except profit.”



Preston’s porcelain white skin was infused with a blush so red as to nearly match his flaming hair. “Well Ah’ll be damned, Ah’ll be goddamed! Ah ain’t never heard nor seen nuttin’ lak dis in all ma born days! I have a suggestion, fine sir, (laughing at himself and the situation). Why don’t ya call yerself Nathan Mandigo? Jes’ plain ‘Mandigo’ sounds pretty African. But Nathan souns very ‘merican. I guess we is all gonna have ta git use ta callin’ ourselfs ‘Americans after dis war is over, not no Northerner nor Southerner, Rebel nor damnyankee. Lots of. . . eh. . . Ex. . . eh. . . free. . . eh slav. . . er dat is. . .Negros. . . er . . . black folks is gonna be runnin; round with onliest one name. You gotta have two! Yer African name what yer daddy gived ya, and a ‘merican name.”



“Well, Mr. Preston, I do declare. That is one fine idea. And eloquently, if somewhat crudely stated. Thank you, Mr Preston!”



“Yer very welcome, (smiling broadly), Mr. Mandigo.” And then Prest did something he had never done before, a gesture that amazed him in its utter simplicity and . . . rightness. He held out his hand for the first time in his life to shake a black hand.



The young men, one musky dark, the other pale as ice, grinned widely and went on pumping hands for so long that Sean laughingly surmised they might bring water to the surface.



Back at the campsite, Sean and Nathan began to prepare supper, while Preston went off to practice his quick draw. His practice was somewhat ineffective, perhaps, since he had only one cartridge left, which he was not about to waste, but he had to admit, even to himself, that he was getting very fast indeed.



As he strolled back into the campsite, his gun and holster slung low and tied off just above the knee, he called the two boys over to demonstrate his rapidly improving skill. First he showed Sean that he had removed all the cartridge from the pistol, then squared Sean off in front of him. “Now Sean, When Ah say now, you clap yer hands, lak dis.” (demonstrating). “Ready? Now!”



Sean had truly clapped his hands together as quickly as he could, but amazingly, Preston had drawn the pistol from its holster and laid the muzzle between Sean’s hands more quickly than he could clap.



“Wow! Very impressive, Prest! Show me again.”



“Okey, but dis time, don’t tell me when yer gonna clap.”



Over and over again, without fail, Preston demonstrated that he could draw faster than Sean could clap, even when he didn’t know it was coming.



That night, lying together under stars so numerous as to actually shine light upon the two lovers, they discussed the events of the day. On most nights now, when the chill and the danger level permitted, the boys slept together naked beneath one set of blankets, rather than in separate bed rolls, their clothes near at hand for emergencies. Sean told Preston he was amazingly proud of the way Prest had so quickly changed his attitude toward Nathan. Preston had countered that if the Confederacy lost this war, which he had to reluctantly admit looked like the future, many many attitudes would require changing, and not only in the south. “You know, Sean, he said, “mah hole life, mah feelin’s bout everthin’ has turned upside down, ever since that day you dragged me inta dat cave and Ah is still tryin’ ta figur out if dat’s a good thang.” He laughed softly, his breath in Sean’s face. “Now dis.” he said, grasping Sean’s cock with both hands, “dis is a good thang.” He began softly stroking the huge member as he leaned closer to kiss Sean’s face. “And this!”



Sean leaned in, his lips firm, moist and hot. His fingertips went to the back of Preston’s neck drawing their faces more tightly together. When they had first kissed, months ago and months after they had first fucked one another, this most intimate of actions had felt strange to both boys, their growth of beard scratchy and weird on each others faces, but now their lips and tongues met freely, lavishly, licking and nibling and sucking ardently.



“Well, Pres,” Sean said softly, “what did you think today when you saw me washing Nathan?” As he spoke he softly kissed Pres’ cheeks and neck, ran his hands gently up and down and all over the youngsters smooth white body, caressed his slim, wrinkle free cock and tight little balls. Tickled and teased at the firm globes of his tender young ass and the soft tight fuzz covered crack between.



“Wha’dya mean, wha’did Ah think?’



“I mean, where you turned on by that nice looking body and that smooth black cock? Or were you angry and jealous that I might start something with someone else? Or were you disgusted by the whole thing?”



“Hmm. Ah think Ah’d hafta say yes to all of that.”



” My turn to say what do you mean?”



“Sssh!” Pres squirmed and writhed under Sean’s tender touch mostly caressing Sean’s huge cock with both his hands. It was becoming more and more difficult to concentrate on the conversation, but he continued. “Ah mean Ah was disgusted at first. Dis whole Negra thang is gonna be a little hard ta git used ta. But then I was worried you’d lak him and . . . you know. . . well, ya know Ah were kinda jealous.”



“So you are tellin’ me that you weren’t interested in him at all, not turned on by his body or that smooth black thing hanging there?”



“Well Ah sorta was, but ya know Ah ain’t even yet convinced that Ah lak boys instead of gals, ‘cept fer you a course!” and saying this he bent and took the swollen, plum sized head of Sean’s cock in his mouth, his cheeks bulging, his tongue swirling around and around, before returning to kiss Sean’s mouth.



“Well.” Sean said, “I was very turned on by the sight of that long thin smooth black body. But I didn’t try anything with him because of you, because I wasn’t sure how you would feel about it and I won’t do anything to endanger what we have together. Also I didn’t want to . . . you know. . . to assume that because I was white and he was a Negro that he. . .well. . . had to do . . . er. . . anything. You know what I mean? Oh Ooh, yeah do that some more!”



As their kisses intensified and roamed over checks and shoulders and necks and nipples, their bodies squirmed and rubbed and thrust against each other, both cocks rigidly upward. Each dick sliding, bumping and banging against the others moistening hardness and against bellies, thighs, legs and balls. Their hands roamed and roved and grasped and pulled and squeezed. The ardor and strength of their caresses growing ever more intense, their bodies seeking to join in fevered need. Each boy began to moan softly as the intensity of their union rose, in counterpoint to the far off sounds of wolves howling out their identities in the star filled night.



Across the campsite, in the flickering flare of the dying fire, Nathan Mandigo, the proud new African-American citizen, heard the sounds emanating from the joined couple and sighed deeply. He, too had enjoyed the fervid joining of loins, enjoyed it with members of both sexes, with black and with white.



When Mandigo had been only eleven, the son of his white master, age 20, had forced him to have sex for the first time. He had informed Nathan if he did not do as he was told, his mother would be sold South. The young slave’s first time had been extremely painful, doubly so because the young master had had no concern for nicety, or tenderness, but had simply taken him as would a brutal animal. And so it had been with all the times he had been penetrated, brutally taken, by his master. Nathan had grown to truly hate the young master. There had followed years of abuse of all kinds, until, finally, Nathan, at fifteen, had become too old. The master had then moved onto Nathan’s younger brother, Caleb. After that, Nathan had had encounters with slave women, one of whom was later the mother of his only child, Aaron, but she and the boy had indeed been sold south and now resided somewhere in the Mississippi delta country. Della, for that had been her name, had been sweet and warm and full of juice, and full of passion for Nathan.



Somehow, after that, the long years of his sexual servitude had begun to influence his choice of companions and he had chosen several male slaves for his emotional and sensual fulfillment, as well as several more luscious female companions.



And now, as he lie there in the chilling night, beneath a single blanket, his own dark smooth manhood began to rise and strengthen at the sounds wafting across from the two lovers. He reached down and began to stroke himself, picturing himself sandwiched between the two white boys, giving and receiving. His mind flicked back to earlier in the day, when the white boy, Sean had touched him, washed him in the river. Had the other boy, the southerner, not been watching, Mandigo might have reached out and touched the boy in response, but he had restrained himself. He would chance nothing that might endanger his flight to freedom and he had feared the young rebel boy.



And now the sounds from across the campsite began to intensify. The obvious sounds of two bodies slapping together with strength and urgency. One of the boys was softly crying out “OH! OH!’ over and over as if unable to contain and quiet himself. The black boy pictured a large white penis, for he had noticed the size of Sean inside his trousers. The sounds went on and on. Mandigo altered his strokes to match the sounds the boys were making, stroking himself now more swiftly, now more slowly. Harder, then more gently. He imagined Sean’s thick white dick repeatedly piercing the cute, very white behind of the smaller, younger boy. His hand flew up and down on his smooth black rod, gripping tighter and tighter, pounding faster and faster.



Drifting from across the way, the other boy’s voice crying out, also stifled but somewhat louder, “Yes, oh my God, yes,” brought the final impulse as Nathan’s slim, dark penis shot forth its stream of thick white cum, coating his black fist and splashing on his ebony chest and thighs.



Morning rose gray and uncertain, the promise of southern summer hung in the air, but a chill morning dew covered all. The boys were slow to start and slow to rise, so the sun was well up before their first coffee. Preston was somewhat easier with the presence of the Negro, but a bit startled when Sean shared his cup with the black. This was going to take some getting used to, but if the south should lose the war, which looked more and more likely, then many lives and ideas would have to change. Pres had decided some days ago that he would wear his gun on his hip now every day. He was somewhat fearful of these uncertain and violent times.

All three boys were packing up to begin what would be, at least for one of them, the final leg of their northward journey. Nathan Mandigo had gone to the creek to fill the canteens. Suddenly they heard screams from that direction. “Massah! Massah Preston! He’p Suh? Hep yore pore ol’ slave!”



Pres glanced at Sean, Sean glanced back. A few moments passed as the lads tried to figure out the meaning of Nathan’s renewed slave status. Then both boys took off running toward the commotion. A large, disheveled and very dirty man sat atop as dirty a horse. His long blond hair hung around his face like a series of greasy ropes. An actual rope extended from his right hand. The other end was fastened around Mandigo’s neck. In his left hand the filthy man held a pistol. He kept its business end wavering back and forth between Sean and Preston as he spoke. “Mah name be Clement Jones and dis here is da runnaway slave Nat’an from Mr. Talbert’s plantation down Alabamy way. Ah has captured him and will be claimin’ the hundred dollah reeward. Ah’ll be thankin’ ya’ll fer not getting’ in da way of da rightful corse of da law. Good day to ya’ll.” He began to turn his horse away but a shout from Preston stopped him.



“Stop Suh! Dat dere is mah personal slave Nathan, mah rightful propitty, and Ah will thank you sir to detest from yer unlawful claim upon him.”



The horseman obviously had not expected resistance particularly in view of the large pistol he now held pointed firmly at Preston’s midsection. “It would seem suh, that you have no rightful claim, since Ah have possession and have a pistol trained on you.”



“Ah repeat, suh, one more time. The slave you have aholt of is mah pers’nal property and you must cease and desist from your unlawful seizure of ma property.”



“Er what? What ya gonna do ’bout it?”



“For the third time suh. You are in possession of mah persnal property. I shall not ask a fourth time. Release mah property at once or suffer the consequences!”



“The large man began to laugh loudly, cocked his pistol and pointed it dead in Prescott’s face.



Whereupon, Prescott simply drew before anyone could blink and shot the slaver dead through the heart. A look of utter surprise came to the face of the large dirty man; he fell slowly off his horse, slammed to the ground in a cloud of dust and lay still.



Nathan and Sean stood agape for several seconds before each shook his head. Though there may have been birds singing or other wildlife sounds, there fell an eerie silence over everything and everyone.



“Ho-o-lee shit,” Sean screamed! “You did it again! You fuckin’ killed him! Shot him dead That’s what you did, you shot him dead! And he had his gun on you already. How did you do that? Holy shit!”



“Sombitch tried to shoot me! Did you see that? He tried ta shoot me. Well, don’t nobody shoot me if’n Ah kin hep it!”



Mandigo’s lips were ashen, set in a tight grimace of fear. “I must ask you, Mr. Preston, do you intend to re-enslave me by force of arms?”



“Huh, Wha?” shaking his head now. Hell no, Ah mean, naw Ah ain’t gonna ‘slave yah. Wahn’t yah here jus now? didnja see I just saved yer Niggra ass fer ya? What da hell ya mean?”



“Never mind all that,” Sean said. “What are we gonna do now? Now we got another dead body on our hands.”



“Why do we hafta do anythin’? He fucked up, pulled a gun on the wrong person. Why do we hafta do anythin’?”



Well, we can’t just leave him layin’ here someone will find him and track us and blame us and kill us or arrest us or something. We got to think about this. Even if we bury him, someone’ll still find him. Well we can’t take the horse,” Sean says. “They hang folks for horse stealing out this way. I guess we have to just turn him loose. Maybe he’ll find his way back home. But I think we have another gun now and maybe some more ammo if it fits. Me and Mandigo here can witness that he drew first, if anybody asks. When we get where we are going we can tell the law there what happened.”



“Wahll, Ah don’ know ’bout you, but Ah ain’t goin’ ta no sheriff or nobody lessen sumbody asks me. And If ya had any sense yah’d know thet Nathan or Mandigo or whoever ain’t gonna tell nobody nuthin’. He’s gotta stay low. Anyhow, A Niggra ain’t got no say in a white man’s court. What country do yall live in? As fer this piece a shit here what tried ta shoot me. I aim ta leave him here fer the buzzards ta eat. He ain’t no ‘sponsibility a mahn. But Ah do thank we gotta quit jawin’ and git outta here pretty quick!”



Mandigo was not about to start going through the pockets and gear of a white man, so he stood and watched while the boys searched. They found a good sharps rifle on the horse, plus some food and some hardware, including a coffee cup for Nathan the good pistol and powder and shot for the Sharps and ammo for the revolver, and seventy-seven dollars and change. They also found a change of clothes, but decided they hadn’t the time to clean and delouse them. Lashed behind the saddle on the pony, they found a quite usable canvas, adequate to fashion shelter for all of them.



Within ten minutes they were on their way, heading steadily north and west, not quite sure where they’d hit the Ohio River. They moved quickly walking at a brisk pace the rest of the day. Pres thought they had made about fifteen miles by days end, but Nathan thought it was closer to twenty. The land became increasingly rolling, so they surmised the river was near. Along the way they discussed what should happen if they were assaulted again. Mandigo said he thought they should stick to the story that he was Preston’s personal slave. Men did not usually carry proof that the slaves they traveled with belonged to them, unless they sought to sell them. Sean said they would stick to the story that he was Pres’ Yankee cousin and the two of them were trying to get to a homestead in Illinois where there uncle Frank lived and had written inviting them to join him.



As evening fell, they boys set up camp against a low hill and set some loose brush at the top so they would hear anyone coming from that direction. Mandigo cut some switches and made a fair shelter from the canvas. The boys agreed that they would take turns on watch, but Preston insisted they could not give Mandigo any of the guns. “It ain’t that Ah don’ trust him, but no one wud believe that Ah, a honest white southern gentleman, wud let mah slave hold a gun even fer a minute.



As they sat around the fire sipping coffee, Sean asked Preston if he could speak with him alone for a few minutes. Mandigo wondered briefly if he might be the subject of their discussion. He had no right to assume that the boys would share their shelter with him and had no difficulty with sleeping under the stars, but he let his imagination wander about possible sleeping arrangements that night and smiled broadly.



“Well,” Sean said softly. “What are we going to do?”



“About what?”



“About Mandigo. He’s going to be sleeping in the same shelter with us. That is we will be alone together, and then he will be alone in there with each of us. What are your feelings?”



“Again I Ah ask, about what?”



“Well I just have this feeling that he would be happy to join both of us or ether of us in a little, well, you know, play.”



“Ah don’ know about making love, er, doin’ it with no Niggra. Yah think their stuff ya know their. . . er. . . seed is white lak ours er maybe it’s black?”



Sean began to laugh. “Of course it’s the same as ours. How silly. Anyway I heard him doing it to himself last night while we were doing it. And I know he was as tempted as I was the other day in the river. I would like to ask him to join us, but I don’t want to upset you or disgust you, or lose you. I don’t know what it is. Maybe it is kind of wrong to feel this way or something but the thought of that black body just turns me on.”



“You mean all. . . with. . . three of us all. . . together?”



“Don’t you think it would be fun?”



“Sean McFadden, you are somethin’ entirely different. Ah swear Ah never even heard a nutthin lak you. Ah don’ know what Ah ever did in mah life to be punished by bein’ tied in with you. Three people? Sex with three people? And one of ‘em a Niggra?” Preston began to pace back and forth as if possessed, shaking his head and exclaiming over and over. “Damnyankee, goldamn Yankee.”



“Well, if you don’t want that, well. . . er. . . what would you say if I . . . er. . . made it. . . did it with him?”



“You mean instead a me,” facing Sean now feet spread, hands on hips?



“Woah, easy,” rushing to throw his arms around Preston, pulling him close, holding him tight. “Now you listen to me Mr. Preston. You are mine and I am yours and as far as I am concerned that will always be. But does that mean that we can never, either of us, be with someone else?”



“Well, does it?”



“I don’t know Pres. I am asking how you feel. Ever since that day on the battlefield, I sort of don’t stop to think any more about what I want. I want to live. Live all the way and not stop for anything. Feel everything, taste everything, try everything. Look at you. A few months ago you were a scared ignorant little hillbilly from Alabama, set to get your young ass shot off for something you didn’t really even believe in. Promised to a sweet young white girl you never even fucked. Now you are a fucking gunfighter, a gunslinger. And . . . well. . . you know. . . in . . . love. . . er. . . I guess, with another guy. Today you shot a man who tried to return a slave to his owner!”



“Ah shot a man who was fixin’ ta shoot me! Whether er not Nathan is a slave ain’t no bizness of mine!”



“You can pretend you don’t care all you want. But I know better, I know you Prest. You could have just let that awful man ride away with Mandigo, but you didn’t. You risked your life. For a black man, a Negro. And you are in love, at least I think and hope you are, with a man, me, not a sweet little girl.”



“But three people. At once. Ah dunno.”



“Look you don’t have to if you don’t want. And I won’t if you don’t want me to. Seriously, Prest, you are my love, my life, but I am attracted and turned on by this guy. Can you seriously say that when you saw us the other day in the river, that the sight of the two of us together didn’t strike something, didn’t excite you?”



Pres dug the toe of one boot in the dirt and looked down at the ground. A bright flush rose up in his face to nearly match the hue of his hair. “Well, Ah. . .that is. . .er. . .well, jes cuz I feel like sumthin’ don’ mean I gotta jump right out and do it, that don’ mean Ah gotta do sumthin’ crazy jest cuz Ah felt a little . . . you know. . .’cited”



“Exactly! You don’t have to do anything. But you want to. Don’t tell me you don’t!”



“Well, mebbe, we’ll see. How you gonna start this . . . this three person thang?”



“I don’t even know for sure that Mandigo is even interested, but just leave it to me. I’ll start things and see what happens. You just follow my lead, Okay? And if you don’t want to keep on, just quit and I’ll understand. Or if you want I can wait until another day. But I am not sure Nathan will be with us much longer. We may reach the river tomorrow.”



“You listen to me, Sean McFadden. You are mine. If this here little three person or two person ‘fun’ thang you got goin’ on here takes you away from me, Ah will hunt ya down and shoot ya. An’ Ah mean dat!”



Sean reached out, his fingers curled around the back of Pres’ neck and pulled his face against his own in a fierce kiss, teeth parted, tongue darting, teeth nibbling. His other hand went down to the front of Preston’s pants and grasped his manhood through his slacks. Finally coming up for air, he said, “I love you Prest. At no time in my life did I ever think that I would say that to another man. But it is true. I love you. My life is yours and I will do anything for you and to stay with you. Do you understand?”



Preston merely smiled up at the taller boy, took him by the hand. The two young lovers walked back to the campsite, holding hands and grinning, not caring if Mandigo or anyone else, saw the outward sign of their love. Sean stopped once more before they arrived back at camp. “One more thing, Prest. Er. . . I’d like to give Mandigo some of the money we’ve got , you know just to help him get by. I thought maybe we would give him some small bills and change so he doesn’t have to explain how he got a double eagle or a twenty dollar bill. We have __________ now.”



“Ah spose Ah gotta give ‘em the shirt, too , huh?”



“That would be very nice of you Presst. He’s gotta have a shirt if he is going to look like a freeman.”



“Damnyankee,” Prest snorted, laughing at the two of them.



Nathan saw the two white boys returning hand in hand and smiled knowingly. He wondered if he had been the subject of the boy’s discussion. How did he feel about making it with either of them? If he decided to do so, as he had fantasized last night, he wondered if such action would bring back the pain and degradation of his previous encounters with his master. He hoped he could free himself in this way, too, become truly free, not only in body, but in his spirit and his memories.



The usual chores and the usual chatter seemed to pass at an unnaturally slow pace. The stubborn sun seemed to not want to set. Since none of them knew exactly what would transpire when they all went to bed, all three were edgy and fidgety. “I think,” Sean finally said, taking the lead, “I’ll turn in. You know, I don’t think we will need anyone on watch for the first couple hours, so maybe we could all get some sleep for a couple hours and then Nathan can take the first shift, me the second and Pres the third. That way we’ll only have to watch for a couple hours apiece.” He stepped inside the makeshift shelter, but made no attempt to lower the flap that would serve as their door. He slowly slipped out of his clothes in full view of the other two boys as if it were something he did every day. He turned his back slightly as he slid off his trousers, but his fabulous manhood could not be easily concealed and swayed heavily with every move. He moved to the other side of the shelter to allow more room and asked. “Whose next?”



Mandigo looked at Prest. Preston looked at Mandigo. Finally the black boy spoke. “Preston. Are you going to be okay sleeping in the same shelter with me? Do you think you can handle it? Instead of answering. Prest moved close to the Negro, placed one finger over the wide black lips to silence them and began to unbutton Mandigo’s shirt. When three buttons were loosened, he ran his hand inside the coarse shirt, his small white hand standing starkly out as he caressed the swarthy chest, before easing the shirt off the broad back. He gazed up into the black boy’s face. “Not just you, but all of this, even him, is new to me. I am learning. He unbuttoned the cotton slacks of the former slave and let them fall to the dusty ground. Nathan’s body shone crimson and ebony in the dancing light of the dying fire and his black cock began to stir and rise, like a shadowy presence springing to life from out of the fire. Preston stood before the Negro and placed both hands flat on the broad shimmering ebony expanse of his chest, very slightly covered with coarse, tightly curled black hair.



Sean was frozen in time as he watched the scene unfolding before him. His monster of a cock began to unfurl and rise. He touched himself, lightly stroking as Mandigo reached to return the favor and began to undress Preston. The negro was a head taller and fifty pounds at least heavier, with broad pecs and tight biceps and a tight rippled belly from the many years of very hard labor. His skin was very very dark, the color of ripe eggplant. His cock was nearly a negative duplicate of Preston’s, but slightly longer, long and slim and smooth as ebony silk, almost entirely free of wrinkles. His balls hung large and lose below, swinging lightly with each move; the firm twin globes of his ass rippled with muscle, his legs well shaped, hard and strong.



Mandigo eased the coarse cotton shirt from Prest, then unbuttoned his slacks and let them fall. He gasped and stepped back two paces when Prest was fully naked, filled with wonder at Prest’s alabaster smoothness, like a young startlingly white god. Prest simply held out his hand. The ebony skinned boy took it, pulled them together and grasped Prest tightly in his arms. It was a wonder and a blessing, this acceptance. The joy for Preston was similar to that he had felt in surrendering his body, his being to Sean. This one long caress freed him from his baseless hatred and prejudice in the same way that his body was now free to experience the joy of total surrender. For Mandigo, the miracle came in demolishing the wall of hatred that had been built around his heart and soul by the many years of physical and sexual abuse by his former master. Their mouths closed on one another, dark and light, their tongues twined and their cocks undulated and throbbed against one another. The kiss went on and on, sweetened by the salty pungency of joyous tears streaking down Preston’s face. Their hands began voyages of exploration roving over their joined bodies, caressing softly, then roughly, then softly once again, heat rising, hearts pounding.



Sean was close enough to see both boys clearly, their contrasting images dancing and flashing in the firelight. As the intensity of their joining rose, Sean could smell the hot sex-smell from each of them, blended, yet distinct. He stroked himself harder and faster now, fully enthralled by the black and white scenario playing out before him.



Preston released his hold on Mandigo long enough to take his hand and guide him into the low makeshift shelter. Both boys had to kneel to enter, so it happened that they knelt one on each side of Sean. For a long moment, thought and action and desire were frozen in time and space, as the two boys knelt one on each side of Sean, one black cock and one white cock sharing space in the sparse nest of Sean’s chest hair. At the base of one, thick tight black coils like steel wool, at the base of the other, soft reddish, nearly pink curls, and jutting up between and below the two, Sean’s own incredible manhood, long and thick and heavy looking, almost fearsome in its now stretched and swollen to its full magnificence and fully enclosed by its heavy brown wrinkled foreskin. Sean stretched out his arms and drew them both down to him, down onto him. And they fell full on him like a pair of young animals, filled with a deep hunger of a different sort, a hunger born of heat and need and desire. Their mouths were everywhere, their hands roamed and roved. They kissed his eyes and each others eyes, noses and faces and lips and knees and shoulders and butts and backs.



Their heat and desire built and grew to a crescendo of need. Finally, Sean, out of control, turned Preston roughly onto his belly, bent Mandigo’s steel hard body over Preston’s back, and urged the black steel hardness of the Negro’s cock between those pale tight white cheeks. All three boys screamed, “Oh!” at the moment of penetration.



For several long moments, Sean watched the hard black phallus slide in and out between the starkly white cheeks of his young lover. The look of it was overwhelming as a great work of art. As he knelt there, one hand flat on the backs of each of the other boys, feeling their bodies move, the hot sweat building on their bodies, hearing the slapping sounds of their intense union, smelling the raunchy man-sex smells, the sounds of two voices moaning with desire and heat, Sean’s consciousness was enraptured, his mind and soul gone, lost in some unknown region of heaven or hell., his body enthralled by a base, primitive urge. He began to move in such a way that his enormous cock slopped and slid and slithered around the bodies of the other two boys. He stopped to smear the wetness that oozed from him all over Preston’s face, then moved to feed its plum-sized head to Nathan. Back and forth he fed it to them. Its length and girth and strength was too much for either of them, but each endeavored to engulf him, to swallow his entirety, slurping and gagging and choking, continuing all the while their fervid thrustings at one another.

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