Chapter 1

 

“EVERYBODY WANTS to know somebody,” Professor Myerson said enthusiastically as he stood before the graduate students in his political science theory class. “And I don’t mean just anybody. I mean somebody. Everyone wants to know someone who can make things happen.”

One of the things Timothy loved about this class was how into it Professor Myerson got, how passionate about the subject he was. The man’s enthusiasm was infectious as he practically leaped with joy over the topic of the day. He was like an evangelist, only rather than selling religion, he sold knowledge of how things worked behind the scenes.

“Think how great it would be to pick up the phone when there is some problem and say, ‘Hey, Joe. You need to know about what’s going on over here. We need your help to fix it.’ Wouldn’t that be awesome if you could do that and have your problems go away?

“And I don’t care what level of society we’re talking about. It could be something like being buddies with the factory foreman who is in charge of scheduling and can get you preferential treatment when you need time off. It could be a store manager who can extend a sale by a day just for you because you couldn’t make it in before the sale ended. It could be the mayor of a town or village or city who can cut through red tape and do something as simple as getting a pothole fixed.

“It doesn’t matter what part of society you occupy; everyone wants to know somebody with power who can get things done. And people who know somebody have power by association. The higher up the food chain you go, the greater that power by association becomes. And here in Washington, DC, we get to see this play out every day. For those of us geeks who watch such things, we can see people who use their connections to get in to see a member of Congress about some pet issue. We study the visitor logs to the White House and see who comes and goes. The simple truth is that if you’ve got connections to someone powerful, you have a potential leg up on everyone else. Proximity to those in power has always been the coin of the realm.”

Timothy quickly typed notes as his professor talked.

“The odds are that someone here in this room right now has what I’m talking about. Someone in here probably knows someone with some power to get something done.” When he paused, everyone, Timothy included, looked up and glanced around the room, checking the faces of their classmates, people they knew somewhat.

“Don’t look at me,” Timothy said. “I don’t know anybody.”

His self-deprecating remark earned some laughter and allowed Professor Myerson to move the lecture along.

“Those who can flip through their smartphones to the number of someone in the President’s administration have others who want to be close to them—power by association. The depth and breadth of one’s contact list can sometimes guarantee jobs, since those people are presumed to have enhanced value.”

 

 

AS A student of political science and of human nature—coupled with his year and a half in Washington—Timothy had some insight into how things worked in the nation’s capital. As a political junkie, he could not have been happier living in DC, because every day in the city seemed to feature some element of political intrigue, sometimes small but sometimes quite large. His position gave him a front-row seat to it all.

But Timothy did not appreciate another aspect of life in Washington. The city was an expensive place to live.

While he’d known the inevitable was coming, when it happened, it hit him hard. He had ignored the obvious for as long as he could, but DC was expensive, and Timothy hadn’t saved enough money. He had exhausted what he had and was faced with a dilemma.

“Tim, I need your rent check,” Jeremy, his roommate, called to him that evening from their apartment kitchen.

“Um, is it that time again already?” he asked, even though he knew the time precisely. He also knew Jeremy had given him an extra day because he understood Timothy was flat broke.

“Yes. I need to drop off the rent checks in the morning. So, fair warning. I need yours when I leave.”

“Um, okay.” Timothy scurried into his room. He rifled through every drawer, book, pants pocket, jacket pocket, and every part of the room for any money he could find. He was forever tossing change onto his desk or leaving it in his pockets. He just prayed that now, when he needed it, he would find enough.

His small pile of cash started to grow over the hour it took him to thoroughly sweep his room. His final hiding place was his backpack that never left his side. He had to go through every single compartment—and there were a lot of them. Using the blanket on his bed as a sack, he carried the money into the dining room and started to count it. It took another twenty minutes, but he was so fucking proud when he had exactly what he needed.

“Will they take cash for the rent?” Timothy asked, which earned him a look from Jeremy. Usually he could read Jeremy, but at that moment, not so much. It only took a moment for Jeremy’s look to morph into one he could read—disbelief.

“Dude, are you that poor? Do I need to start looking for a new roommate?”

“Please! No! I’ll earn more money this month and be ready for the next payment,” he promised, even though he didn’t have a freaking clue how to make that happen.

“Tim, there are pennies here! Were you digging through every pocket to come up with the rent money? Huh?”

When Timothy didn’t answer, Jeremy said, “Oh. My. God! That’s what you’ve been doing. Dude! I didn’t know things were this bad for you. Does this leave you—”

“Broke,” Timothy supplied. “Flat broke.”

“What about food?” Jeremy asked.

“Eating is overrated,” Timothy said, wishing desperately that was true.

The simple fact was that his campus job and his other job didn’t pay him enough to survive. He could either pay his rent or eat, but he couldn’t do both. And God forbid anything unexpected should come up. If it did, he was just plain screwed.

That night as he lay in bed, his mind refusing to shut down so he could sleep, Timothy flashed back on something his mother had said to him before he’d left home.

“I don’t got no money to give you, baby. But I done give you good looks, a strong back, and a sharp mind. You got to use them and take it from there.”

At the time, he hadn’t known what to make of that remark, but now, lying in the dark of his bedroom, he had a thought. Was there something he could do with his good looks, which people were always complimenting him on, and his strong, tight body?

Whatever he did for work had to fit around his classes and his research. School was his first priority. He would not sacrifice his studies to make money, no matter how much he needed it. And that seriously limited the options open to him, not that there were that many to begin with.

That evening, Timothy remembered a friend’s comment from a month earlier. She’d said, “Honey, with your hot face and body, you’d be a natural to model for my art professor and his classes. They’re always looking for guys.” At the time, he’d laughed at the idea and changed the subject.

A few hours later, when the sun was up and it was a reasonable hour to contact her, he pulled out his phone and hesitantly got the name and contact information for her professor. Another call had him scheduled to meet the man in twenty minutes. It looked as though his friend was right—they were desperate for models.

 

 

THE BUILDING where Timothy was to meet the professor was one he passed every day on his way to class. While he knew the outside, he’d never actually set foot inside. Finding the room he needed, though, was not difficult. The door was open, revealing a large space with lots of windows, all with the blinds mostly drawn shut. A small, raised platform stood as the centerpiece, surrounded by a dozen easels with canvases.

He knocked hesitantly.

“Timothy?” someone said from his left, and with his nerves on edge, Timothy jumped.

“Yes,” he said, his voice slightly higher than usual. He cleared his throat and tried to get better control of his nerves. “Yes, I’m Timothy.” He confidently stepped forward and extended his hand to the man who’d spoken.

“Thank you for calling, and thank you for coming in so quickly. I’m Professor Isaacs, and I’m delighted that Rebecca mentioned posing as an option for you.” He walked all around Timothy, checking him out from all angles. “From what I can see, I have to agree. You’ve got precisely what my students want with that jet-black hair, your chiseled jaw, and your runway-model good looks. They are going to positively drool over you.”

“Um, okay,” Timothy said. “Can you tell me what’s involved? And what does this pay?”

“Pay is simple. We pay you fifty dollars an hour, cash at the end of each class. The fees for the model are paid by the students separate from their tuition for the class. So if you pose for two hours, you leave with one hundred dollars.”

Finally, something to put a smile on his face.

“Oh, and dimples too,” Isaacs cooed. “They are going to adore you.”

“So, two hours you said?”

“Yes. Provided it works out well, we’d need you for two hours twice a week.”

“So that’s two hundred dollars?” Timothy asked to make sure he understood.

“That’s correct.”

“And all I do is stand up there?” he said, gesturing toward the platform.

“Yes, that’s it. You come in, take off your clothes, and we position you in a series of poses.”

“Wait,” Timothy said sharply. “Take off my clothes?”

“Yes, this is a drawing class. The students draw nude models to learn the human anatomy.”

Timothy’s face burned with embarrassment.

“Is something wrong?” Isaacs asked. “You did know this was a nude modeling gig, didn’t you?”

“No. I didn’t.”

“Well, it is. And assuming you work out well, which I’m sure you will, I can spread the word to my colleagues in the department, and you will easily be picking up some other modeling gigs for other classes. We have a very large program with a record number of classes this semester, so we desperately need models.”

Timothy stood silently, stoically, for a moment, thinking. One hundred dollars for standing around for two hours sounded great. No other job he’d heard of paid anything remotely close to that. And he was desperate. But the thought of standing nude in front of a room full of people freaked him out.

“Um, I need to think about it,” he said.

“You do that.” Isaacs handed him a business card. “But I hope you will do it. We need you, and I’m guessing you need the money.”

“Um, yeah, I do.”

“How much do you need?” Isaacs asked.

When Timothy told him the amount of his rent, Isaacs didn’t bat an eye.

“If you have what it takes and you work out, I think we could guarantee you earning that much each month.”

“All in cash,” Timothy said, salivating at the thought. “Okay.”

“You’ll do it?”

“Um, uh, yeah, I guess, when you put it like that.”

“Excellent.” The little man beamed at him. “Come,” he ordered, walking toward his desk. He pulled a single sheet from a file in his desk drawer, handed it to Timothy, and gestured to a chair. “This is our standard model release form that outlines what you are agreeing to do and how much you will be paid. I’ve found it useful to put everything in writing so neither of us are surprised by anything.”

“Good,” Timothy said, quickly reading through the solid page of small print, text clearly written by a lawyer.

After reading the document, Timothy picked up the click pen Isaacs had laid out for him. But rather than sign, he chewed on his lip, furrowed his brow, and clicked the pen, nearly incessantly for a full minute. He wasn’t aware of doing it until Isaacs put his hand on Timothy’s and said, “Please, stop. That is… grating.”

“What?” Timothy asked, completely oblivious. Automatically he apologized and put down the pen.

His hand was suddenly wet with sweat, as was his brow, and just about everywhere on his body. Remembering the previous night and the desperation of going through every nook and cranny of his room for money, Timothy wiped his wet hand on his pants, grabbed the pen, and signed his name. He added the rest of the requested information and provided his ID for age verification.

“Excellent.” Isaacs grabbed a blank piece of paper and started writing out dates and times. “These are when we will need you.”

The times did not conflict with any of his classes; most of them appeared to be afternoon sessions. The first one listed was that afternoon at two o’clock.

Pointing at the paper, Timothy said, “Today?”

“Yes. I recommend you dive in and get your first experience under your belt.”

“Except I won’t be wearing a belt, will I?”

“No, it’s just a figure of speech. Nonetheless, the sentiment is the same. Get your first experience out of the way quickly and see how easy the work is.”

“All right. I’ll be back here at two,” Timothy said.

“Actually, come fifteen minutes early at one forty-five so you can get changed and get ready to pose. The class begins at two, and I like to have everything set to go when the students are ready.”

“All right, I’ll be here.” As he walked out, Timothy muttered to himself, “I must be freaking insane.”

It didn’t matter that he had no money for food that day. His stomach was so twisted into such knots that he couldn’t have handled food even if that had been an option.

At one forty-five precisely, Timothy knocked on the classroom door. Professor Isaacs directed Timothy to a small adjacent room, more of an office than anything else, and instructed him to undress and slip on a small, cheap, cotton robe that barely covered anything.

Timothy forced himself to quickly pull on the robe and cinch it tightly about his waist.

“I can do this,” he said softly to himself as he paced the small space. “I can do this. I can do this. I can do this. Mama gave me a great body, and it’s time to use it to make some money. I can do this.”

By the time two o’clock rolled around, Timothy almost believed it. But it only took one step into the room for him to nearly freak out. There were so many faces, so many people, so many women! God, he didn’t know if he could get naked in front of women. Guys, sure, no problem. But women? Why hadn’t he thought about that?

Sweating profusely, he stopped in his tracks.

“Timothy,” Isaacs said softly, “it’s time.” He gestured to the platform.

Timothy forced his feet to move again and ascended the steps to stand on the raised platform in front of the assembled students. He barely focused on the reactions of the students around the room as two or three mouths dropped open and a couple of students smiled appreciatively at his handsome appearance—at least as much of it as they had seen.

Isaacs was explaining something about what the students were supposed to do or focus on, but Timothy was too freaked to hear anything but noise until the professor stood beside him. “Timothy, it’s time.”

“Huh?”

“Lose the robe. I’ll get you posed for the first segment.”

And much to his surprise, Timothy did it. He put his freak-out aside, and with his back to the students, he shed the robe and then reclined on the posing couch Isaacs had set up for him. They started with him looking at something on the wall, not at the students. One of his hands was resting above his head and one of his legs was raised, effectively blocking anyone from seeing his tender bits.

“I can do this,” Timothy said softly to himself.

It shocked him, but he did it. Even when Isaacs had him turn onto his side, facing the students, his flaccid penis flopping into view and his loose balls not far behind, he was directed to close his eyes and act as though he was asleep. He did it. He did not look at the students, and very nearly fell asleep.

At the end of the session, Timothy quickly slipped the robe back on and wanted to make a fast exit to get dressed again. He was surprised, though, when a number of students wanted to talk with him. Both men and women complimented him on his face and his physique, and one of the guys even asked about his exercise routine.

Timothy was surprised by the gushing praise. He could do this.

And for the remainder of that month Timothy did it, and he earned the money he needed to pay his rent on time. He even had enough to eat occasionally.

 

 

TIMOTHY’S SECOND month started out well, but midway through it, he was assigned to work with another teacher, a ferocious woman who was more of a drill sergeant than anything else. She did not have a kind word to say and snapped orders at him on how she wanted him posed. But worst of all, when he didn’t get it exactly right, she grabbed him and manhandled him into position. He could handle that. But in the second hour of the class, when she’d roughly grabbed his penis to move it, he pulled back and very nearly punched her.

“What the fuck are you doing?” he demanded.

“I’m getting you where you need to be, since you don’t seem capable of doing it on your own.”

“Do not ever touch me there again. That’s over the line.”

“I can and will position you as the students need you. Their time is very limited and very important. It’s not my fault if some airhead pretty boy can’t follow simple directions.”

“What did you just call me?” he demanded, raising himself to his most imposing, using his six feet of height and his broad shoulders to his advantage.

He didn’t want to, but he had to give it to the professor—she was not intimidated. But Timothy was not in a contest. He would not have anyone grabbing his dick. He snatched up his robe and quickly left the platform and exited the room.

After getting dressed, Timothy returned to the classroom and loudly said, “Pay me.”

“No. You didn’t complete the class. You get nothing.”

“Pay me!”

“And I said no,” she said, raising her voice to match his.

“Pay me!” he shouted.

“Get out!”

Horrified that everyone in the classroom was watching this exchange, Timothy did just that. But rather than leave the building, he marched angrily to Professor Isaacs’s classroom. When he explained the situation to Isaacs, however, the man backed up his colleague.

“The agreement you signed does state that the teacher of each class will position you as he or she needs you for that session.”

“So ‘position’ means grab my dick?” he demanded. “And she refused to pay me.”

“Yes, payment is provided at the successful completion of the agreed-upon length of the full session.”

“So that’s it? You’re backing her up?”

“I’m sorry, Timothy. We can easily write a stipulation into the agreement about no one touching you while you are posing. But consider the position I’m in here—you’re talking about the head of the department. I can’t go up against her and hope to survive. She’s ferocious, and I try to avoid her at all costs.”

“Yeah, whatever.” Timothy stormed out, furious with how this afternoon had turned out.

 

 

THE NEXT day, Timothy spotted an ad in the local gay newspaper for “hot hunks” to audition as strippers at a local bar. Figuring he was finally accustomed to being naked in a room full of art students, he didn’t know why stripping would be any different. After all, he could dance with the best of them when he went out with friends.

His audition was a little rough because he wasn’t accustomed to removing his clothes while dancing. That, plus he hadn’t worn things that were easy to take off. Eventually, though, he did get naked, and he did get the job, along with instructions from the manager on how to dress to smooth out his routine.

“Be here tonight at nine for your first set,” the manager told him.

As the new guy, he had a slot early in the evening, so the bar wasn’t very busy. Even so, his nerves nearly made him freeze when he stepped onto the stage. Somehow he got himself moving and let the music take control of his body. He covered the stage as he thrust and bounced and flexed.

He got a few tips that round, more when he did his next set an hour later, and even more on his third and final set an hour after that. He worked it the best he knew how, smiling and being pleasant in order to earn his tips, a dollar at a time.

As the place became more crowded, the tips slowly got a little higher. But something else happened that he hadn’t counted on. The later it got, the more the customers had been drinking, and the more aggressive they became at grabbing parts of his body. Several of them got death grips on his nuts, and try as he might, he could not get their hands off. When he left the stage after his final set, his nuts hurt like they’d been shoved into a vise and his nipples throbbed from the pinching and squeezing they’d taken that night by who knew how many men.

Backstage he emptied his socks again and added the money to the cash he’d shoved into his backpack earlier. Quickly counting his earnings, he couldn’t believe it. Seventy-eight dollars. That was all he had earned after hours of work. Seventy-eight dollars and a pair of aching nuts and two very sore nipples.

And so ended Timothy’s one and only night as a male stripper.

 

 

 

Chapter 2

 

STILL DESPERATE for money, though, Timothy had to consider new ideas.

“It seems to me that you’ve got two options left,” Jeremy said the next morning.

“Okay, I’m listening.”

“Option one is pose for photographers.”

“I’ve called some. They all want me nude. I’ll pose nude for art classes, for drawing and painting, but I draw the line at photography. Those are more permanent, and they could come back to haunt me in the future.”

“True. Okay. Option two is sell that pretty ass of yours.”

“Sell my ass. Explain.”

“Well, technically, I guess you’d rent it. You become an escort and have sex with men for money.”

Timothy blew out his breath sharply. He’d not thought of that. But desperate times called for desperate measures.

“You like sex, right?” Jeremy asked.

“Of course. I haven’t had any in forever, but yeah, I love sex.”

“So get paid while getting laid.”

“Do you think I could?”

“Sure, why not? You’re hot. Create an ad, put it online. We’ll get some sexy photos of you to go with it, and then let the good times roll—and the money too.”

“I don’t know,” Timothy said. “I like sex just as much as the next guy, but I kind of like it when I pick the person I’m having it with. And this seems risky too. I mean, what if the guy who calls is a cop and it’s a setup?”

“That doesn’t happen anymore. When was the last time you saw a story like that?” he asked, which was a valid question.

Timothy thought about it. He and Jeremy checked out a bunch of other ads, taking notes of what the escorts did and how they described what they would do. Using the notes and a couple of headless photos Jeremy took of him with his cell phone, Timothy created an ad and joined the ranks of male hustlers.

Rent was coming due soon, and he was without a viable source of income. Desperate times and all that.

 

 

HE WAS amazed by how soon men began contacting him.

With the date, time, and location set for his first call, Timothy’s calmness evaporated. Everything leading up to that moment had been theoretical, but with a specific appointment, it suddenly became real. He was going to do this.

My God, I am going to go have sex with total strangers for money and then walk away with their money and never think about them again.

Without a strong understanding of the whole escort business, Timothy didn’t have a clue what to expect in terms of clients, or “gentlemen callers,” as Jeremy referred to them. He’d figured every call would be strictly about sex. Consequently, he was surprised when his first client turned out to be an older man who was mostly lonely and wanted to talk to Timothy and cuddle with him. Timothy was astonished someone would pay him to spoon them for the night without expecting him to spread his legs, but that was precisely what the guy wanted. Timothy almost hated to take the man’s money, but his rent was due the next day, and he was short by two hundred dollars.

His second caller, the next night, was more what he’d expected. The man was an out-of-shape businessman at an airport hotel who wanted Timothy to suck him off. That was a request Timothy could accommodate, although it took the man quite a while to get off. Just when his jaw felt like he’d never be able to close his mouth again, Timothy gratefully felt the man finish. That appointment was pure work. But work was how you got money.

For about a week, a variety of clients kept him busy most evenings. Usually his calls lasted an hour or two, and most clients wanted something basic. Even when the client was not remotely what he would have considered for a personal sexual liaison, Timothy focused, imagined some hot man he’d seen earlier that day on campus, and did what was expected of him.

“You going out again?” Jeremy asked one evening after a long string of nights out. “Are you planning to see men every single night?”

“I would prefer not to—I would actually prefer to not see any of them—but I don’t live in that fantasy land.”

“You’ve been out with a different man now, what? Seven nights in a row?” Jeremy asked.

“Eight, and don’t remind me.”

“You at least making some decent money?”

“Trying,” Timothy said.

“Do you think this will be the way it’s gonna go, with a different man ordering you every night?”

“You’re asking me?” Timothy said. “I don’t have any more basis for answering that question than you do.”

“Well, do you think it’s something like the shiny, new toy on the market gets all the attention?”

“I don’t know. That could be part of it. I’ll have to ask at the next monthly gay whores’ meeting.”

“Fine. Mock me for showing concern about you.”

“Sorry,” Timothy said. “I appreciate it. Really, I do. I just don’t have the answers. And trust me, I share your interest in having answers to those questions.”

“Any guesses?” Jeremy asked.

Timothy sighed. “If I had to guess, I’d say that some of it is because I’m the newest ‘shiny thing,’ as you put it. But there have been a lot more business travelers than I expected—guys who are away from home, away from their wives and kiddies and are taking the opportunity to have some sex like they really want but never get to have except when on a business trip. Beyond that, I don’t know. I’ll be curious to see if there is a peak season or peak day of the week, or if any other pattern emerges.”

“So you think you’ll be doing this long enough to gather that data? It’s not just a stopgap measure?”

“I need money, and this is the best way I’ve found to earn it without having to sacrifice study and research time.”

Further conversation would have to wait, though, because Timothy’s phone rang with another potential customer.

 

 

 


Chapter 2

 

STILL DESPERATE for money, though, Timothy had to consider new ideas.

“It seems to me that you’ve got two options left,” Jeremy said the next morning.

“Okay, I’m listening.”

“Option one is pose for photographers.”

“I’ve called some. They all want me nude. I’ll pose nude for art classes, for drawing and painting, but I draw the line at photography. Those are more permanent, and they could come back to haunt me in the future.”

“True. Okay. Option two is sell that pretty ass of yours.”

“Sell my ass. Explain.”

“Well, technically, I guess you’d rent it. You become an escort and have sex with men for money.”

Timothy blew out his breath sharply. He’d not thought of that. But desperate times called for desperate measures.

“You like sex, right?” Jeremy asked.

“Of course. I haven’t had any in forever, but yeah, I love sex.”

“So get paid while getting laid.”

“Do you think I could?”

“Sure, why not? You’re hot. Create an ad, put it online. We’ll get some sexy photos of you to go with it, and then let the good times roll—and the money too.”

“I don’t know,” Timothy said. “I like sex just as much as the next guy, but I kind of like it when I pick the person I’m having it with. And this seems risky too. I mean, what if the guy who calls is a cop and it’s a setup?”

“That doesn’t happen anymore. When was the last time you saw a story like that?” he asked, which was a valid question.

Timothy thought about it. He and Jeremy checked out a bunch of other ads, taking notes of what the escorts did and how they described what they would do. Using the notes and a couple of headless photos Jeremy took of him with his cell phone, Timothy created an ad and joined the ranks of male hustlers.

Rent was coming due soon, and he was without a viable source of income. Desperate times and all that.

 

 

HE WAS amazed by how soon men began contacting him.

With the date, time, and location set for his first call, Timothy’s calmness evaporated. Everything leading up to that moment had been theoretical, but with a specific appointment, it suddenly became real. He was going to do this.

My God, I am going to go have sex with total strangers for money and then walk away with their money and never think about them again.

Without a strong understanding of the whole escort business, Timothy didn’t have a clue what to expect in terms of clients, or “gentlemen callers,” as Jeremy referred to them. He’d figured every call would be strictly about sex. Consequently, he was surprised when his first client turned out to be an older man who was mostly lonely and wanted to talk to Timothy and cuddle with him. Timothy was astonished someone would pay him to spoon them for the night without expecting him to spread his legs, but that was precisely what the guy wanted. Timothy almost hated to take the man’s money, but his rent was due the next day, and he was short by two hundred dollars.

His second caller, the next night, was more what he’d expected. The man was an out-of-shape businessman at an airport hotel who wanted Timothy to suck him off. That was a request Timothy could accommodate, although it took the man quite a while to get off. Just when his jaw felt like he’d never be able to close his mouth again, Timothy gratefully felt the man finish. That appointment was pure work. But work was how you got money.

For about a week, a variety of clients kept him busy most evenings. Usually his calls lasted an hour or two, and most clients wanted something basic. Even when the client was not remotely what he would have considered for a personal sexual liaison, Timothy focused, imagined some hot man he’d seen earlier that day on campus, and did what was expected of him.

“You going out again?” Jeremy asked one evening after a long string of nights out. “Are you planning to see men every single night?”

“I would prefer not to—I would actually prefer to not see any of them—but I don’t live in that fantasy land.”

“You’ve been out with a different man now, what? Seven nights in a row?” Jeremy asked.

“Eight, and don’t remind me.”

“You at least making some decent money?”

“Trying,” Timothy said.

“Do you think this will be the way it’s gonna go, with a different man ordering you every night?”

“You’re asking me?” Timothy said. “I don’t have any more basis for answering that question than you do.”

“Well, do you think it’s something like the shiny, new toy on the market gets all the attention?”

“I don’t know. That could be part of it. I’ll have to ask at the next monthly gay whores’ meeting.”

“Fine. Mock me for showing concern about you.”

“Sorry,” Timothy said. “I appreciate it. Really, I do. I just don’t have the answers. And trust me, I share your interest in having answers to those questions.”

“Any guesses?” Jeremy asked.

Timothy sighed. “If I had to guess, I’d say that some of it is because I’m the newest ‘shiny thing,’ as you put it. But there have been a lot more business travelers than I expected—guys who are away from home, away from their wives and kiddies and are taking the opportunity to have some sex like they really want but never get to have except when on a business trip. Beyond that, I don’t know. I’ll be curious to see if there is a peak season or peak day of the week, or if any other pattern emerges.”

“So you think you’ll be doing this long enough to gather that data? It’s not just a stopgap measure?”

“I need money, and this is the best way I’ve found to earn it without having to sacrifice study and research time.”

Further conversation would have to wait, though, because Timothy’s phone rang with another potential customer.