The next time Luigi saw a handsome manly bloke making eyes at him, he'd turned coldly away and pretended not to see. But it didn't last, naturally. He needed a man in his life. His own effeminacy turned him off other men like him, and though he knew such feelings were foolish and dysfunctional, it changed little. So, cautiously at first, and then more often, he'd tried picking up straight and straight-acting males. He found himself addicted to the hunt, the exchange of looks, the interpretation of what the other man meant by his expressions. Even the danger added to the spice. Like riding a motorbike too fast.
When he encountered Jason, he'd been visiting the meat-racks and cottaging for so long it almost seemed the whole point of gay relationships. A simple love between two guys seemed both vanilla – and unobtainable. He couldn't imagine coming home to someone, hearing a greeting from the kitchen or the lounge-room where the man he loved and who loved him would be waiting, welcome on his face and in his words.
The last thing he thought about as he went to sleep that night was not the sex they had nor how good Jason had been at it, nor about Jason's handsome face and muscular body, but about his smile.