Grangers on a pane
Rudy told James that he was going to be in Tainbridge the following Saturday and asked if he would like to have dinner or drinks and catch up. James agreed to dinner and they met at a very mediocre Italian restaurant that incited a mild bit of regret in the both of them.
Though they hadn't spoken in seven years, there was not much catching up. Rudy announced that he was moving to Tainbridge soon, and James's heart lept. Then somewhat abruptly, he asked if James had a boyfriend. James replied in the affirmative, and Rudy's heart sank.
Somewhat upset, Rudy called Carlo, then asked James if he would like to have dessert with Carlo downtown. James did not particularly want to have dessert with Carlo, so he replied in the affirmative.
Presently they came to be having dessert, and Carlo excitedly chattered about how he was getting Rudy a job at his firm and how everyone's lives were going to be fantastic. James developed a slight melancholy and went home to his boyfriend, Chaim.
Rudy moved to Tainbridge, began working at Carlo's firm, and started spending as much time at Carlo's house as Carlo spent at Rudy's. After about a month, he began to lose hope that work began tolerable, and life started to wear him down. Carlo knew that Rudy did not want him very much, but swore to win him over, no matter what it took. Carlo was very devoted to him, but the constant doting did not make him happy.
James called him to chat, and Rudy asked about his boyfriend again. James changed the subject, and Rudy jokingly suggested that James buy him a new phone. James laughed, and suggested that they get together. Rudy said that he was far too busy with work at the moment, but perhaps that would change in the future.
Then a spark of hope ignited within Rudy's soul, and he began to fantasize. Rudy would leave Carlo and run to James when given the new phone which would be imbued with so much unspoken meaning.
So too, a dream nagged at James's mind. Finally, in a moment of weakness, he bought a new phone which he imagined Rudy would like.
Rudy was afraid, so he continued to say that he was too busy to spend any time with James. James continued to grow frustrated until at last Rudy was free for dinner. So they made a date, and James gift-wrapped the phone and brought it along. Just a few minutes before their scheduled rendezvous, Rudy called and asked if it would be acceptable if Carlo joined them for dinner. James did not want Carlo to join them, so he answered in the affirmative.
Rudy avoided any opportunity for him to be alone with James, and James grew increasingly frustrated. When the bill arrived, everyone just stared at it contentiously until Carlo finally announced begrudgingly that he would pay for everyone.
Carlo and Rudy returned to Rudy's house, and James retired to his. James became more downcast and berated himself for being pathetic enough to buy the phone. Rudy became even more impatient, finally losing control and calling James to scream at him for being so inconsiderate as to make Carlo pay for the dinner. James was very defensive, and their relationship grew very strained.
One day, Rudy called James and invited him to dinner immediately after work. James accepted, and headed to the restaurant. When he got there, Rudy was alone. James groaned, for he did not have the phone with him. They had a very civil dinner, Rudy paid for both of them, and then they went home.
Rudy gave up all hope that James would buy him a phone. They never saw each other again.