Taking the Cake

BY : RandomJaz
Category: +G through L > Harvest Moon
Dragon prints: 195
Disclaimer: I do not own Harvest Moon or any of its characters, nor do I profit from this fanfiction.

 

It started with a cake.

The cake Raeger was helping me make was for Fritz. The friendly farm boy had been kind enough to show me around when I first came to town, and was even nicer for dropping in all the time to see me. In no time at all, he was my closest friend. Something I never thought any conflict would come from.

But I was wrong...

I just wanted to do something nice for him but nothing too over the top or suggestive in fear of sending the wrong message...or rather the a mixed message. My sexual preference for men had the potential to hinder the innocence of a kind gesture and have it looked at in a rather different light. So ideas for gifts sorted through, I decided on making a cake...except I wasn't the best cook.

I asked another friend for help. The local chef himself, Raeger. Now him and I weren't quite as close as Fritz and I had grown to be but the brunette was someone I did my best to spend lots of time with whenever I could. He was almost always working ...which made things difficult. His work aside, the the chef was all for giving me a a hand, offering to come over and help me in my own kitchen like the reasonably good friend he'd grown to be over the past season. All should have gone well.

We moved around my kitchen that evening, making the cake. As time passed in my kitchen though, he questioned what the occasion for a cake was, and I didn't see the point of lying. So with my back turned to Raeger as he opened the oven, I placed a bag of sugar back in the cabinet.

"Oh no occasion" I told him honestly, leaning up on my toes to reach the shelf. "It's for Fritz."

Fritz's name came from my mouth and the happy, care free energy was gradually lost. I didn't understand why at the time, but Raeger's bristle at Fritz's name was not quite as subte as he'd hoped it'd been. In hindsight, it was pretty obvious. As I shut the cabinet, I came back to stand flat on the soles of my feet and turned to Raeger.

The cake pan was placed in the oven as he prodded me about my 'interest' in Fritz. The farm boy was cute and he was certainly friendly, but he hardly pushed the potential of my platonic interest in him. And even if he had, I didn't understand why Raeger harped on it. I never thought Fritz meant anything other than being nice when he dropped in so constantly, Raeger knew more than me though apparently.

"You know Fritz likes you, right?"

He brought it up suddenly as he shut the oven, bluntly tossing out the information as if it would offend me. My brain buzzed with the alledged insight to Fritz. I never went as far to assume Fritz's behavior was romantically fueled, so I denied Raeger's insinuation relexively. Fritz was my best friend, I didn't like him. Not like that. Someone else caught my attention.

And he was right there in the kitchen with me.

I liked Raeger, I really did. He was tall and extraordinarily good looking. Despite having a rather pretty boy face he was not build like the ordinary pretty boy. He was build like a man, all six feet and two hundred pounds of him. And that strapping man was showing just the faintest bit of hostility, speaking of Fritz's not so platonic interest in me.

Raeger was ripped to put it simply, it was almost embarrassing. I worked a farm and had yet to acquire a physique anywhere comparable to him. He was a cook, a damn sexy cook...and he had biceps large enough to toss me clean through a wall if he wanted to. A massive man whom could easily have any woman he wanted. I briefly wondered what that meant was in store for me if he found out about my crush on him.

Fritz's alleged crush on me was still the focus of his attention. He pushed it further, the issue of Fritz. He was fixated on it even going as far to ask me if I'd be interested in Fritz if he confessed to me. I laughed it off, feeling tense as the secret object of my affection, whom I began wondering was homophobic, interrogated me about another man. I didn't want to talk about it, worried I'd slip any say something I really shouldn't and possibly get my ass kicked.

I knew all too well the dangers of small towns and promptly decided to keep my mouth shut for my own safety. I was trying to close up the bag of flour on the counter, ignoring Raeger's prodding as I fumbled. To my luck the bag was taken from my hands by Raeger as he stpped in to help, effectively startling me in the process.

Coming in from behind me, his height towered over me. I held my breath, feeling as he came in closer. His large hands brushed mine aside as he took the bag of flour from me relieving me of my struggle to close it. My jaw was tense, my shoulders scrunched as he stayed right behind me.

"I'm serious" he pressed, creasing the folds of the flour sack. "Do you like him back Johnny?"

All for honesty being the best policy, I had no issue with answering his question...but his interest in the matter now terrified me. Turning around to take the flour back, his blue eyes were watching me far more attentively than usual. I answered him without having a clue to why he was actually so invested in my answer. I never knew Raeger to be the busy body type. At the time, I didn't know him to well at all...just those striking muscles and blue eyes of his. And that dazzling, bright white smile.

It scared me to think he may possibly even be a gossiper. He was so polite, he didn't seem the type for a gossiper. But he was huge and that left me with a far greater fear. What was that friendly man capable of? I didn't know as much about him as I wanted to but he was dead set on finding out about me.

"I don't like him...I don't like him like that at all." I told him, putting the flour back on the counter near me for a moment to hide my face. " I just wanted to do something for him... he's been very kind to me. You know, er... just like you have."

Raeger didn't care for my answer how I'd hoped he would. I wanted him to accept my answer and drop the topic but I managed to make it worse.

" Everyone is nice to you, Mr. Popular. Everyone in town likes you. Maybe not everyone likes you like Fritz but you're popular here, nowadays."

Raeger said it so...straightforwardly. His usually friendly gentle voice laced with an edge. It was almost like he cut himself off, like he was going to comment further. His remark struck me as exaggeratory though, because I didn't consider myself to be the socialite he insinuated I was. I was new in town and doing my best to get along with everyone.

Some more than others. Which I quickly began second guessing myself for.

"I'm not that popular, Raeger..."

"You're far more popular than you realize." he argued. "...with some more than others. Much more, actually. "

Wiping his finger through some flour on the counter top Raeger looked at it before rubbing it off with his thumb. I could feel my pulse in my throat.

" You're a just little oblivious. I mean that in the nicest way possible too." he assured me. "Being naïve is nice."

"That doesn't sound very nice..." I argued meekly.

"Well I think it's charming. "

A small smile suddenly grazed his lips and it made my heart flutter. Without thinking, words left my mouth. My eyes widened hopefully, my wishful thinking surfacing against my logic.

"Charming?"

"Sure." he answered, watching me for a reaction now. "Some find that sort of thing cute, you know."

Raeger looked me over briefly and chuckled as I blinked at him confused, nearly feeling my cheeks warm as my blood ran cold everywhere else. Had he been setting me up for a reveal then I'd be screwed. He then undid the apron he had on himself. Hanging it on a cabinet knob before holding his hand out for mine.

I undid my apron since we were done baking and gave it to him to hang up with his, noting how the subject just slipped on by without further discussion. Raeger suggested we get cleaning. The kitchen wasn't very messy, just a little flour here and there that needed to be wiped away or swept up. And some eggs that were left on the counter that needed to be put away.

The cooking utensils were already in the sink soaking and a bowl of frosting Raeger whipped up was waiting in a mixing bowl, set aside for when the cake was taken from the oven and cooled. I was thankful for the lack of true mess because for once, I wanted to get away from Raeger. I wasn't sure what was going on but I felt like the walls were closing in on me I was so nervous.

" I should start cleaning up now so I don't leave it for the last minute later on" I changed the subject, feeling myself getting warm from Raeger's little remark along with my anxieties. "You can sit down or something, I got it."

I was hoping he'd step out of the kitchen so I could get some space and gather my thoughts. But just my luck Raeger proved himself to be a helpful person yet again.

" What am I going to sit down for? I'll help you."

"You've already done enough, I can't ask you to clean this up."

"I work in a restaurant, this is nothing"

I went to look for a broom to sweep up the flour Raeger was wiping off the counter and on to the floor. I came back as he patted the white powder from his hands. As I began sweeping the mess up in to a pile, Raeger stared at me, but I didn't notice until I looked up at him with the intention of asking for the dust pan.

"Raeger?"

My voice was for certain much more insecure than I intended it to be, feeling like he was seeing something he wasn't supposed to see. Putting pieces together of a picture that maybe he'd caught a glimpse off when I let my guard down at some point.

"Yes, Johnny?" He responded so smoothly, not missing a beat. "What is it?

It was hard not to blush as he looked at me. If I turned pink before his eyes my secret would be exposed for sure. I worried it for a moment then realized I still needed to reply. Not wanting to look like an idiot by not talking after calling his name, I shook off the bashful feeling and cleared my throat.

"You look kind of spacey...you alright?"

"I'm perfectly fine, just lost in thought."

His blue eyes were fixed on me, attention undeviating.

"... Mind if I ask you another question though, Johnny?"

I don't think I'd ever played off being terrified as well as I did just then.

" Not at all..."

Raeger ran his tongue over the front of his teeth inside his mouth, tilting his head side to side as he deliberated how to execute his question. His Adam's apple stuck out from his throat, bobbing as he swallowed. One arched brow raised, tongue roaming the hollow of one sculpted cheek as he mulled over his words.

He didn't ask what he had planned to, instead he reached his hand down to me to help me stand up. I took it reflexively, forgetting I still needed to sweep up the mess on the floor in to a dust pan. Raeger pulled me up and as I situated myself to stand up straight, then he invaded my personal space by slowly backing me up in to the counter.

I didn't know what he was doing. I was cornered and I feared the worst. He bent down to my height, face right before mine. He smelled like the frosting he carefully taste tested for the cake. The frosting he ever so carefully prepared...before knowing it was for Fritz.

"So...do you usually give sweets away to guys?" He pryed slowly, keeping my gaze on him. "It's pretty suggestive."

"F-Fritz is just a friend!" I insisted.

"Is he really?"

His face closed in further and I stared back at him, doing my best to maintain my composure. If I was about to get my ass beat I was going to do it with dignity. I nodded o answer him and Raeger's expression was stoic for a moment. I assumed he felt I was lying, expecting to get hit. But to my relief and complete surprise, Raeger shut his eyes and closed the space between us. His lips barely touched mine.

I wasn't ready for it, even as I finally saw it coming. The gleam in his eye before he kissed me. I didn't oppose it. My eyes fluttered shut as I began leaning in to him, all the tension I my body giving out at once. Practically felt twenty pounds slip off my shoulders. It never passed my mind to ask questions and I kissed him back. Ready to deepen it, I opened my mouth at the seams but Raeger pulled away.

" When were you planning on saying something?"

"I wasn't …"

Raeger nodded, not asking me why. He probably knew the answer, my fear of outing myself in my new residence. My fear of being cast out or judged and my fear of losing those around me. What were the odds of other gay men in such an old fashioned community? It would've be almost impossible to know at the time I came along.

Thinking about it, Raeger seemed to know about Fritz...which struck me as strange. Had the farm boy outed himself? At the time I could only wonder. Did anyone know about Raeger?

"I...don't know how things go around these parts." I explained to him, opening up just enough knowing I was safe. " I didn't want to ruin my chance at a new start. Spring was pretty promising, hoping to stay here... "

It was much easier to look at him now, my face no longer prickling with heat in fear that I'd stare at him too openly and get hit.

" I didn't even know about Fritz...or you. I wish I did, things would have been so much easier. " I confessed to him. " Not that I blame you or anything. I just couldn't tell at all."

"We don't go around advertising it, I understand."

I hoped Raeger would go on and explain but he didn't. It was my turn to pry.

"Can I ask you something back?" Him knowing about Fritz really perplexed me, I never suspected a thing. "How did you find out about Fritz?"

He didn't like that question, it was written all over his face. He tried keeping his lovely smile, but the corners of his mouth turned down moderately. His eyes flashed with bother and I stressed that I maybe I stepped in to something that went beyond just a casual bit of information. Raeger confirmed my worry when he chose not to give me an explanation to my question.

"Some things are better left unsaid"

I didn't like the way he answered me, trying to move the topic along. I wanted to ask him about it but his lips on mine again were a sufficient way of going about changing the topic. He kissed me softly once more, pressing his body in to mine very carefully. The edge of the counter was not the most comfortable surface to have pressing in to my lower back in to and I pushed back against Raeger to adjust. The issue could wait.

The fluffy white flour on the floor left a powdery and slick surface under my right foot and it made me stumble as I lost my footing stepping back. I caught myself with both hands on the counter behind me and my lower back hit the low edge I had been trying to move away from to begin with. Of course I squawked in pain, scrunching my face from the dull pain growing sharper where my flesh was bumped. I wouldn't have been as embarrassed if it hadn't been for my left hand knocking down the flour in the process of it all.

" Well that was cute" I said it jokingly, trying to alleviate how dumb I felt for the little accident. "Now I have to sweep again..."

Flour fell to the floor like a mist of dusty fog, some of the white powder still in the air by our legs. It covered the dress pants Raeger was wearing as well as my own and I felt horrible for making a mess out of his clothing. I rubbed at the sore spot on my back, face hot and red. Raeger laughed at my mishap and layered his hand over the one I had on my back without giving any concern to the white splotches on his pantlegs.

"It was cute. Does it hurt bad?" He questioned me, moving his hand to slide under mine over the spot that hurt. "I bump and knick myself at work, let me see"

"I'm sure I'm fine-"

"Just let me see."

He turned me around and lifted the hem of my loose fitting button shirt to inspect the damage. He rubbed his fingers over the area, telling me my skin was fine for now. Still rubbing it softly he assured me I'd be perfectly fine, with nothing but maybe a bruise later. I knew I'd bruise because when his finger pressed down in a specific spot it was extremely tender.

"Mmph!" I grunted as he poked it, inspecting the general area. " I'm going to feel that tomorrow, I just know it. "

"So it hurts mostly here?" he poked it again, harder.

"YEAH"

"Be glad you didn't actually fall, years back my late grandfather slipped and brought down a whole shelf on the way down."

He began massaging my lower back, rubbing firmly to ease the discomfort. His hands felt great but another man's hands on me didn't feel as innocent as it should have within the current context. I liked him touching me but his skin directly on mine was alot to take in, even if it was a friendly touch. He kissed me moments ago but I didn't particularly want to go over board and get aroused. Raeger was playing with fire and I was the one who'd get burned.

" It'll be fine, you work on a ranch. I'm sure you'll have worse." He promised me, crouching on one knee now while rubbing the area harder. " You're short but I bet you're nice and sturdy."

"Well yeah, I guess..." I mumbled, wincing as he kept pressure to where a bruise would eventually surface. "Still hurts though."

"Should I kiss it better?"

I could've sworn I imagined him saying it. I paused, debating whether to ask him to repeat himself. I took too long because I felt his lips touch me. They kissed the dip of my spine.

And that's how m troubles truly began, not that I had yet to realize what would be in store for me.

Raeger's hot breath billowed from the narrow parting of his lips and I quivered once it hit me. I could feel him smirking in to me and I knew things were going to take a very, intense turn. As I was still positioned over the counter, he used both his hands to pull my shirt up and nuzzled the skin he exposed.

"You made quite the mess out of me by the way..."

"Sorry about the flour-"

"Oh that's not what I'm talking about."

He stood back up and I felt very small all of a sudden as his voice came from above my head. He bent his neck down and kissed the side of my face from behind, hands wrapping around me to play with the split hem of the front of my buttoned shirt. His cheek came from behind to rest on mine and I could feel the faintest trace of stubble on that smooth face of his. He must have done well to shave because i never would have known he had facial hair.

" But...our clothes are covered in flour." he continued, circling a button with his thumb. "Nice going Johnny"

"It was your fault! You-"

"I what?"

It wasn't a challenge, he knew what I was going to say. I didn't realize in the moment but he wanted me to say it. And I did. I fell for his little trap.

"You kissed me!" I spat it out defensively, trying to turn my head back to look at him.

" And you loved it. So come here."

This time when he kissed me it was rougher but I didn't see that coming. His mouth sucked on mine and he pushed open my lips with his tongue, my face craned over my shoulder for him. I should have had more sense and pulled away from him, stop him from taking it so far so soon. But I didn't want to, I really wanted him. I had nothing to base it on but my blazing crush, but I really wanted him.

I kissed him from over my shoulder but Raeger broke off the kiss to turned me around and hoist me up on to the counter. He set me down, the boost leaving me eye level with him. He kissed me again and I returned it full heartedly..until I felt his fingers exploring the trail of buttons of my shirt. I ignored it, keeping my cool. But as he trailed up past my stomach again and one button was traced, I lost my nerve.

He was tempted to undress me and that was taking it too far. He wanted to try, the reality hit me. Mid make out, I pulled away when his fingertips began slipping the top button of my shirt from it's clasp. Raeger was disappointed but let me end the kiss, relocating his own hands back down to my waist, abandoning the buttons.

"Too much?"

"A little...yeah."

"No worries."

With a finger trailing up my neck, Raeger stopped it beneath my chin. His blue eyes narrowed at me and my mouth went dry.

"There's always another time, right?"

His smolder almost led me to answer 'yes'. I unconsciously almost nodded my head when a rapping at the door caught us both by surprise.

"Johnnyyy~"

Because I was too trusting, I left my door unlocked. In came Fritz. He quickly took in the scene before him. I waited for him to comment about the suggestive position I was in with Raeger, but he stood there stunned.

"What are you...?"

Raeger, bluntly a ever, began to spit out an explanation.

"We were making ou-"

"MAKING A CAKE!" I interjected, smiling nervously.

Fritz looked around at the mess.

"The flour goes in the cake Johnny...not everywhere else."

Raeger scoffed.

"Thank you, the ever insightful Chef Fritz..."

"Raeger you know I'm not a chef. I don't even have a kitchen, man."

"Nevermind..."

The sarcasm flew over Fritz's head completely and I laughed a bit. Raeger wasn't amused. I cleared my throat, trying tofigure out how to casually slip myself past Raeger off the counter. He had me trapped between his arms and torso. Putting my hands on his chest, I awkwardly pressed as a signal to let me down.

Raeger stared at me before stepping back. He tried holding me down but I hopped off the counter. Being there was still flour on the floor, I slipped when landing. I fell right on my ass, hitting the floor with a hard thump. Fritz laughed and Raeger looked down at me, blinking.

"You really are a clumsy one, huh?"

"As of today..."

Fritz came over, still snickering and helped me up without asking if I needed it. I regained my balance and he held me, the soles of my shoes useless to the powder covering the floor. I zipped out of Fritz's arms however when a hand came down across the seat of my pants. I looked to Raeger, expecting an explanation.

"You have flour all over your ass" he told me, shrugging. "Only way to get it off."

"There's still lot's there..." Fritz commented.

"Well he moved."

After stepping away to get the broom, I swept the floor up again and being Fritz had been over my house before, he went and got me the dust pan. Raeger picked up the bag of flour and binned it, the contents nearly gone being most of it was on the floor and us. Once getting up off the ground, Fritz noticed the unfrosted cake on the counter.

"So why are you making a cake anyways? Is it someone's birthday? I can't remember anyone's birthday being today..."

"Oh, um..."

I caught a look from Raeger, a disapproving look. Instinctively I knew to lie if I wanted to wipe that growing scowl off his face.

"I was, having a sweet tooth kind of day is all. Raeger taught me how to bake...we had a nice time."

"That's cool."

It turned out Fritz had originally dropped in to ask if I was participating in the fishing tournament the next day. I was, and with the answer Fritz smiled. He was excited and went off to report back to Veronica at the guild. The kitchen was now clean, but my clothes were still a mess.

"I need to shower and change" I told Raeger, eyes set on the bathroom. "Are you going to stick around or are you heading home?"

"I'll head home. I'll see you tomorrow though."

Raeger left too and although everything was essentially fine, something was brewing. But having not a clue, I went and showered. When I came out and changed in to fresh pajamas, I spotted the cake still in the kitchen. On the counter it sat, unfrosted.

       



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