Chapter 5: Nausea

Garry was sorting out his mostly unneeded groceries in the kitchen when he heard his phone ringing from the living room. He had left it there inside the jacket, which should still be lying on the couch where he’d left it. Slightly annoyed, he started making his way out of the kitchen, clicking his tongue. Before he could reach the threshold, little Ib had beat him to it, in her hand his ringing phone.

“Garry, phone.” She said, showing him the flashing screen. His eyes darkened when he took note of the caller’s ID.

“Why thank you, sweetie.” He petted her head, smiling as he received the device from her. “Go make yourself comfortable, I’ll bring the macarons after this.”

“Okay, I’ll be in your room.” She replied and patted away.

He listened to the sound of her bare foot tapping on the wooden floor until he was sure she was out of hearing range and pressed answer.

“Hello, Garret’s speaking.” He spoke with the most solemn tone he could muster.

“You’re free to talk, kid?” A man’s energetic voice said playfully. Garry’s eyes widened, his body immediately becoming taut, subconsciously taking a straighter stance. He wasn’t at all prepared. The caller’s ID was Ms. Voltfied, but the one speaking now was…

“Mr. Garland, um, what a surprise.” He replied, nearly stuttering. “Yes, I’m free-” Garry closed his mouth the instant the words left though his teeth. He winced, shaking his head at his bad wit while biting back a soft curse. He hadn’t directly said he was busy when excusing himself, but still…

The man on the other side let out a burst of raucous laughter, whether it was because the man had taken note of his contradicting himself or something else, Garry wasn’t sure. He could only hope it was the latter.

Mr. Garland ended his laughter with a few coughs and continued. “Well, Rinny will take over now. I’m off.”

“Eh?” He blinked as he heard small slapping sound.

“Leonard, I told you not to throw it like that!” Ms. Voltfied muffled voice could be heard from the other side, adding up to his confusion.

“Er, good evening, Mr. Wolfe.” She said into the phone. “I’m very sorry for his capricious tendencies.”

“It’s not a problem at all I assure.”

“Well, I apologize nonetheless. I shall get straight to the point. We will be out of town for the rest of the month, so Leonard will pay you a visit on a later weekend. Please make sure to keep your schedule open. Is that okay with you?”

“Yes, it’s fine. I will make sure I’m free.” Garry said with more conviction than he had ever tried to convey through only his voice before. “Please have a safe trip.”

“Thank you. Well excuse me, we have to get going now.”

The other line went dead with a click. Garry stood still, slowly taking a deep breath before relaxing his posture. His hand that was holding the phone dropped down to his side, his fingers loosely wrapped around the device. What had he done? He brought his gaze from the floor to the grocery bag on the kitchen table. He’d shirked off the meeting with his benefactor for what now?

Stifling a sigh, he went to the electric kettle and proceeded to boil some water. He stood and stared at the small bubbles inside the transparent appliance.

This was not right, but as strange as it was, he felt that his decision was worth it. He had been able to keep Ib from talking any further with her crush, and as stupid as he might sound, it felt like such an accomplishment. He couldn’t care less about the aftermath.


“Ib~ I brought the snacks.” Garry called out, using his shoulder to keep the door to his bedroom open as both his hands were busy with two mugs of hot cocoas and a plate of macarons.

Inside, Ib was sitting on his bed with her back to him, completely absorbed by the greenery outside the window wall until she heard his voice. She immediately turned around and smiled shyly. The little girl then slid down from the bed and scuttled up to Garry to help him with carrying the macaron plate.

He swiftly thanked her and shifted one of the mugs to his free hand for a safer grip on both. Ib went with him back to his bed, set the plate down on the mattress. There was a certain bounce to her movement that let him know she was in a very good mood, which made him feel at ease also. He joined her on the bed, giving her the smaller mug that she always used when she visited him.

“Be careful, don’t burn yourself.” He attentively told her as she received the hot cocoa.

“Okay.” She replied. Holding the mug with both hands, she cautiously took a sip of it.

.

Silence quickly filled the room, the kind of comfortable quiescence that they usually shared just enjoying each other’s company.

Normally, Garry would be the one talking and getting Ib to talk, but right now he didn’t feel like talking either. They just sat and watched for the slightest change of his backyard. Ib was such a quiet child, most kids her age wouldn’t be able to handle staying in silence like this. Instead of moving around and being active, Ib loved to stare. She could sit and stare all day if the subject interested her enough. The subject, in this case, was the garden; she seemed to like it very much for some reason. The thought made him grin inwardly. He took care of the plants everyday, so it felt nice to have someone appreciate it.

One day, he would have to return this place to Mr. Garland, which was regretful. He was getting attached to the garden.

His mulling brought him back to his current dilemma. He might have angered his benefactor… or not. Garry could never tell what that man was thinking behind his smiling countenance. He could be kicked out of this place when the man come visiting next month. Should that happen-

“Garry?” Ib’s voice broke through his clouded thoughts, and he turned his attention to his little friend.

“Yes?” He smiled. Ib didn’t say anything, only looking at him with hesitant eyes. “What is it, sweetheart?” He encouraged, taking note that she had finished her drink. “Oh, do you want some more cocoa?”

She shook her head from side to side.

“Then what?” He chuckled, not at all annoyed. He found himself to be extremely patient with anything that concerned Ib. “Here, give me that.” He took the empty mug from her hands and placed it on the nightstand just to his left.

Ib buried her hands between her thighs and started dangling her legs, still not saying anything. He didn’t push her either, only waited. Outside, the sun was setting, giving his garden a yellowish hue. It was getting dark.

“… Is something bothering you, Garry?”

He nearly spit out the cocoa he was drinking.

Garry swallowed with difficulty and cleared his throat before answering. “W-what makes you say that, dear?” He strained a smile, placing his now empty mug down on the nightstand also.

“You seem stressed. Am I intruding at a bad time?” She raised her gaze at him, head sinking between her shoulders.

“No! No, you’re not. Don’t ever think that.” Garry exclaimed softly, placing a hand on his hip. “You’re always welcomed.”

“Okay.”

He fell back onto his bed, containing a frustrated groan. Did it show? Garry rubbed a hand over his face. He wasn’t supposed to stale their time together, he wasn’t supposed to worry her, he wasn’t supposed to pull her into his problems… she wasn’t supposed to notice.

She’s growing.

He felt the bed shift and brought his attention to the little girl next to him. Ib had climbed fully onto his bed and was now staring down at him; her silken locks hung just above his face, wafting a sweet scent to his nostril that made him take a deep breath. She watched him with a calm expression, yet her eyes were filled with concern.

“Are you stressed?” She asked again.

Garry chuckled, suppressing his wry look. “No, I’m just tired from school, Ib.” He stroked her head lovingly and pinched her nose. “Thanks for worrying. Now how about you tell me something I don’t know?”

It was a small routine they had to help Ib practice expressing herself more through speeches: to have her tell him something he didn’t know. It worked quite well, because Ib couldn’t possibly know more than he did so she always had to say a lot. She would have this slightly sulky face every time he announced she had to try again. He loved that sullen face, and sometimes would even lie to see it.

Ib didn’t look too pleased. She lay down besides him and pouted. “Now? Why?”

“Why not?” He beamed.

Her lips tightened, she started gathering his messy blanket under them into a small mount and buried her lower face in it. Garry rolled onto his side to face with her. He watched with interest as her red orbs scanned his room in an attempt to find something to talk about.

“… Garry.”

“Yeah?” He played with her hair. The smoothness he felt against his palm was exceptionally pleasant. How nice it would be if he could-

“You know, I used to like the smell of my bed the best.” She said shyly, catching his attention; her eyes carefully searched him as though gauging his reaction. The little girl looked away for a moment, then went back to burying her face into his blanket. “But now, I like yours most.”

.

Garry sprung up to a sitting position, averting his face. Surprised, Ib slowly got up and tilted her small head. “Garry?” She called. “Was that no good?”

No good.

“N-no, it’s fine, Ib. It’s fine.” He assured her, scampering to stand up while avoiding her eyes. “I didn’t know that. Erm, whew, look at the time. Let me just… take a quick shower and I’ll take you home, okay hon?”

Before Ib could input a single word, Garry had already fled the room. Left alone on the bed, she lied down on one of Garry’s pillows and took in a breath. Her thoughts drifted back to the sweet scent of lavender shampoo from when he hugged her.


Garry got into the bathroom and shut himself inside. He leaned back against the door, hanging his head low. A rush of sudden heat ran through his body and his breathing hitched. He cupped his face, wiping it over and over to recollect his composure.

What is this?

He swallowed with difficulty and shook his head.

Why run away?

He eyed the shower for a moment and proceeded to take off his clothes, in haste. He shrugged off his shirt and tank top, hurriedly freed himself from the pants that somehow felt so tight.

Hot.

Garry stepped into the shower. With a swift flip, cold water immediately rained down on him, making him shudder involuntarily. He disliked coldness, but he stayed still. A few moments later, a small click of the tongue could be heard amidst the shower. He irritatedly slapped a hand onto the tap, turning it to the opposite side.

The sudden change in temperature made the skin on his back screamed in protest, but he couldn’t care less. As water ran down his naked body, he looked down at himself.

I must have some kind of serious illness.

He wrapped his hands around his semi-hardened length and gave it a gentle squeeze. His eyelids became heavy.

I’m sorry…

His mind was flooded with images of her. Her face, her hair, her eyes, her body… Her. Vivid memories enhanced by sickening desires. Immaculate fantasies.

Biting back a hiss, he toppled forward and leaned his head against the marble wall in front of him; his hand never stopping. Back and forth. Faster and faster. Then slowed to a stop. He opened his eyes, barely registering the humid steam surrounding him. This was wrong. He could barely think; his rock-hard length encased between his fingers was aching for more. He closed his eyes.

I’m sorry.

He went on, growing more and more crazed with every stroke. The water running along his back steaming hot, his breath ragged, his every thought focused entirely on her. Wild heartbeats thundered inside his ribcage, he grounded his forehead to the wall, jaw hardening.

“Nngh…” Garry shakily heaved through tight lips, shuddering in the slightest as his emotions hit the zenith. He stilled as he took his release. Hands fell limped by his sides, he tried to calm his breathing.

… The worst.

 

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Trivia:

  • Garry’s bed is queen size
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