Junior Guppy

by alyjude

By now, everyone knows the Great Truth. We don't own them, but if we won the lottery, we would. However, we do play with them, house them in our basements, and provide them with a never-ending supply of lube.

This was an anniversary snippet for Dolimir and a place of safety. It also takes place in the Jake Universe. This happens after Fireworks, but before our
guys go on vacation. Hopefully this will tide over the few Jake lovers out there until I finish my Jake on vacation story.
Thanks to TSL for the beta.
Special note: For welp.

This story is a sequel to: yep - The Jake universe

Jim stepped through the door of their home, a worried expression on his face. He'd been using his senses since entering the courtyard of the Anyasmajo because of the absence of one four-year old squirt attached to his leg. He simply wasn't used to coming home from anywhere without having the Jakemeister throw himself at "poppy!".

As he'd approached the front door, all that could be heard from within were three steady heartbeats, but no words, and only the slightest of rustling noises.

Now in the living room and removing his jacket, Jim listened even more intently. This was too weird.

Wait -- okay, he had them pegged. Naomi was in the kitchen, but obviously not cooking; Jake was in his bedroom and had company, which meant either Cherry or--

//no, we must not show ourselves, my faithful companion, we must only observe.//

//but, but, but--//

//but, my faithful companion, i am the leader.//

Corky. It was definitely Corky.

Jim sighed happily. Everything was all right with his world. Corky and Jake were playing, and evidently Corky was a "faithful companion".

Shaking his head at the antics of four year olds, Jim walked through the dining room and into the kitchen to find Naomi at the table, several cooking magazines strewn over the surface. She was currently flipping through Bon Appetite.

At his entrance, she glanced up and smiled in such a way, that Jim could see the ghost of Blair playing around her lips.

"Jim, you're home. Where's--"

"Only a few minutes behind me. He was coming from the courthouse."

Walking to the fridge, he indicated the magazines and asked, "What's up?"

"Oh, I'm having a few friends over to the loft tomorrow and I've got to plan the menu."

Jim popped the top off his juice, but before taking his first sip, he said, "O-o-kay, but since when did you need the help of cooking magazines?"

Naomi bent her head down but not soon enough to hide her blush. "Well, actually, I'm serving -- a -- high tea." The juice bottle was almost to his lips when Naomi said "high tea". The bottle remained frozen in mid-air as Jim cocked his head. Eyes wide, he said, "High tea? You're serving a high tea?"

Naomi quickly closed the magazines, piled them one on top of the other, then fitted them in her arms like school books. She rose gracefully and said, chin in the air, "Yes, Jim. I'm serving my friends high tea. Finger sandwiches, scones with clotted cream, a lovely cold asparagus soup, lemon tarts and a trifle."

As she walked out, she added, "Oh, and of course -- tea."

The kitchen door swung back and forth as Jim stared open-mouthed.

Well. Okay then.

He took a gulp of juice, and with lips itching to grin, followed Naomi into the living room. He was about to say something witty, when the front door opened and Blair blew in.

"Hey, guys. Where's Jake? No one greeted me and I'm destroyed," Sandburg said as he shuffled out of his light jacket and let it fall on the back of the couch.

Jim dropped a kiss on the top of Blair's head, picked up the jacket, then said, "Jake and Corky are in the bedroom, busy not showing themselves, and your mother is preparing for a high tea, with scones and everything."

Blair was taking the bottle from Jim's hand when he heard the high tea remark. His hand froze, fingers clasped around the bottle.

"Um. High tea? Mom, did I hear that right?"

Picking up her purse, Naomi huffed, blew a stray bit of reddish hair from her forehead, then said, "Yes, you heard correctly. And could someone tell me why this should be such a big deal? A woman of indeterminate age can't have her friends over for high tea? This is a crime?"

Blair was nothing if not a good Jewish son. He recovered quickly. "So, what kind of finger sandwiches are you serving? I have a great recipe for a light chicken curry that would be terrific for a high tea."

Naomi's expression softened and with a smile, she moved to his side and said, "I love you, sweetie. And I already stole that recipe. What would you think if I added finely chopped apples to it?" "Well, the only thing I'd suggest then, would be to substitute the chopped celery for chopped walnuts," he said, kissing her back. Then he added with a grin, "By the way, hi Mom."

"Hi, yourself. And that's a great idea. Will do. I'm going to say good-bye to my grandson, then I'm off. I've got a bit of shopping to do before tomorrow."

As Naomi disappeared down the hall, Jim took his partner into his arms and kissed him thoroughly. When they parted, Blair said, "What was that for? Not that I minded."

"Just because you're such a good son." Then he added with a leer, "And you kiss pretty darn good for a detective, second grade."

"Ah." Blair reached for the juice again. This time he managed a swig before his mother came back out. She gave them both kisses, then said, "See you on Monday."

Blair shook his head. "No, you'll see us on Sunday, Mom, remember? Jake's first official swim meet."

"My God," Naomi moaned. "How could I have forgotten?"

Jim patted her cheek and said, "Planning for high teas can do that to a person. So can advanced age."

Eyes glittering, Naomi said, "From advanced age, you would know, Jim dear." She patted his cheek, kissed Blair again, and swept out the front door, superior in the knowledge that she once again had bested her son-in-law.

"How does she always do that?" Jim asked as Blair sat down on the couch, Jim's juice bottle still in hand.

"Mostly she always does that because you make it so easy."

"Umph." Jim sat beside him, grabbed the juice, took a swig, then said with mock sorrow, "We've lost our son, Blair."

"I know. It's all over when they stop meeting you the minute you step out of the car."

Jim nodded. "Yep. Next thing you know -- the kid'll be married." At that precise moment, the soon-to-be-wedded four year old marched in, followed closely by Corky.

Both men gaped as the two boys marched through the living room, into the dining room, then into the kitchen. Jim recovered first. "Uh, Blair? Love of my life? Our son has a -- colander -- on his head."

"I noticed. Corky was wearing a nice little number from Bloomingdale's Home Store."

"Yes, I believe it was my saucepan."

At that moment, the two boys marched back out. Jake paused, held up one hand, and Corky slid to a stop behind him.

"two creatures to our--" Jake looked at his right hand, then his left, then at the couch. Finally he said, "left. should we explore, o'faithful companion?"

Corky shook his head and the saucepan slid around until the handle now faced front. "no, my leader, they be -- fierce."

"i 'gree. i chose well when i chose you. come, we have much to do." Jake punctuated his order with a firm nod of his head and the colander slipped down over his eyes. He didn't bother to adjust it -- after all, it had holes. He marched straight ahead, Corky following.

When they disappeared, Jim looked at Blair and Blair looked at Jim. Both men burst out laughing.

Jake was having trouble maintaining his leadership role, after all, his daddy and poppy were home. But, he had an image to project, so he and Corky returned to his room. As Corky slipped inside, Jake shut the door, then got down on his hands and knees. Corky immediately followed suit.

"what are we doing, my leader?"

"we are sneaking up on the great beast, my faithful companion."

Corky peered over Jake's shoulder. All he could see was Jake the wolfpup. Not a great beast in his opinion, but then, he was only the faithful companion.

"is he dangerous?" Corky whispered.

Jake tilted his jungle hat back on his head and nodded. "a'course, that's why he's called the great beast. he can tear your arms off with one swipe of his great paw." Jake scrunched up his face, swiped his hand out at Corky and was delighted to see Corky rear back and away. He added a low growl for effect.

"maybe -- we should -- get re-re-endor--re-"


"yeah, that."

Jake pondered the idea, then squared his shoulders. "we be the bestest, my faithful companion. the beast is ours."

Corky looked at his leader, then over to Jake the wolfpup, who seemed to have grown since he'd last looked. The stuffed animal definitely looked dangerous now.

"are you sure, my leader?"


Jake motioned with a finger that they should be silent, then he pointed to the other side of the bed. Corky nodded and began to crawl over, while Jake dropped to his belly and scuttled his way to the nearest side of the bed. When he figured Corky was in position, he said in a stage whisper, "on the count of three -- one, two, three!"

Both boys yelled like banshees, jumped up and pounced on the unsuspecting wolfpup. They struggled, rolled, wrestled, and in the end, Jake held up the wolfpup and crowed, "he be ours! we have defeated the great beast, my faithful companion!"

"yippee!" Corky yelled in jubilation.

Jake high-fived his friend, then said, "now be time for eskeeeemo kisses!"

Suddenly two great hunters turned into two small boys. They jumped off the bed, Jake tore open the door, and they raced down the hall, Jake screaming, "daddy! poppy!"

In the living room, both men smiled as their world righted. A moment later, their arms were full.

Corky's mom had picked him up and dinner was ten minutes from being placed on the table. Jake was still wearing the colander while he drew pictures at the kitchen table, and Jim was at the sink, rinsing the lettuce for the salad. Blair was watching his son.

Funny, Blair thought, even after all this time, he never tired of watching Jake. At the moment, his son looked silly and wonderful and so very young.

Jake was hunched over his drawing paper, one green crayon gripped tightly between his fingers, his tongue caught at the side of his mouth, the colander tilted at a jaunty angle. He was wearing his purple Jurassic Park tank top and red shorts with the neon yellow, glow-in-the-dark stripe on each side. On his feet, he wore his clear plastic sandals, the only other pair of shoes, besides his ratty tennis shoes, that he'd deign to wear. All in all, Jake looked pretty normal for a four year old.

A few months previously, they'd started to let him choose his own outfits and discovered that when left to his own devices, he always chose -- colorfully. Very colorfully. Jim had balked in the beginning, his own muted, white-tube-socks-go-with-everything sense of style crying out in agony every time he looked at his son. But then he'd catch the humorous and knowing gleam in Blair's eyes, and he'd shut up.

Different drummers and all that shit.

As Blair watched the picture on the white piece of paper continue to take shape, he wondered how parents could take the days of their children for granted. He witnessed it everyday, and still couldn't understand it.

Mothers in stores, ignoring their child, or speaking harshly or degradingly; the fathers holding small pre-schoolers in their arms and not nuzzling those sweet necks or rubbing warm soft skin under tee shirts; parents walking their children to school, yanking on their arms and telling them to hurry instead of enjoying those few precious moments.

Did it have something to do with actually bearing a child? If the child was truly blood related, a parent could forget that a gift was still a gift, and thus take that child's time with them for granted?

Blair shook his head, then slowly reached out and stroked the back of his finger down Jake's cheek. His son stopped what he was doing, looked up, and smiled warmly.

"hi daddy."

"Hi, son."

Jake turned the picture around. "can you guess?"

Blair cocked his head to the right and squinted, then said, "Um, I see two brave hunters stalking a wild and dangerous beast. One of the hunters, the one who is undoubtedly the bestest, is obviously the leader."

"which one, daddy?" Jake said excitedly. Blair pointed to the small semi-stick figure with yellow hair. "That one." Then he tapped the other stick figure, the one with the red hair, and said, "That is definitely a faithful companion, the bestest faithful companion."

"yup!" Jake said gleefully, proud that his father knew.

Jake suddenly put down his crayon, slid off his phone book, walked over to his daddy, and climbed into his lap. He took the colander off his head and rested against his father's chest. He then picked up his father's hand and began to play with the strong, slender fingers.

Blair looked over at the sink and found a pair of pale blue eyes watching them with love. He smiled. Jim smiled back.

"daddy, tell me 'bout the swumming meet again, and why am i a guppy?"

Jim snickered, then muttered something about guppies flocking together. Blair rolled his eyes, then began to tell Jake all about his first "swumming meet".

End Junior Guppy by alyjude: alyjude@webtv.net