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THE CLOSUREDS' ORDER CHAPTER 6 - THE SECOND JOURNEY

When his first tour was over, Jarvis went back to his Convivium where Trake was waiting for him. He went upstairs to his master's cell, he bowed deeply, "Master!"

"Welcome back, Jarvis, my friend. Has been your first journey fruitful?"

"More than any expectation, Master. I filled hundreds of pages with notes. May I show them to you?"

"I will read them with pleasure... later. Now you are tired and you need a rest, I think. In a while it is bathing time. Let's go and bathe, then to eat, and then there are the evening dances - you will start to tell me all about it tomorrow."

"What about the news here at the Convivium?"

"Nothing important. We will have time to talk about that too."

"I missed you, Master."

"I too missed you, Jarvis, and more than just a little."

"Don't we have a little time for us, before the bath?"

"Only enough for a little hugging." the master said and held Jarvis tightly in his arms.

"Oh, at last." Jarvis sighed happily, leaning his face on the man's chest.

Trake smiled, "Were you afraid I wouldn't do this?"

"No, but I was wondering how long I had to wait. Do you love me, Master?"

"Always. Do you doubt it?"

"No, but I am pleased to hear you say it again."

"And you... won't you tell me too?"

"I am yours, Master. I am always yours."

"And?"

"And I love you!"

After the evening dances, they went back to their rooms. Finally the two lovers could intertwine in a tender embrace on Trake's bed.

After a while the master said, "What if, during this long absence, I fell in love with another?"

"But you said you are in love with me, didn't you?" Jarvis said with a self- assured smile.

"I could have fallen in love with another, and still continue to love you. There is a really beautiful Novice, very attractive, who fell in love with me."

"Who?"

"Sukin."

"Do you like him?" Jarvis asked slightly tense.

Trake caressed his chest sweetly, then his belly and went lower to caress the boy's turgid genitals that leapt in a ready answer to his touch. Then the master said, "You saw him in the bathing room didn't you? He has a really, really sexy body."

"Did you make love with him?"

"With how many did you make love in these months?"

"Six, no, seven. If you made love with Sukin, I'm glad for you, Master. But do you now prefer him to me? Do you want me to set you free?"

"I'm happy having you here, now."

"But you fell in love with him, didn't you?" Jarvis asked trying to give a natural tone to his voice, whilst in reality his heart was in turmoil.

"In a month you will leave again. Let's enjoy this month."

"But you are in love with Sukin, Master, aren't you?" the boy insisted.

"I said he is in love with me, not the other way around." Trake smiled, "No, Jarvis, between Sukin and me there is nothing. I never made love with him, not with him nor with anybody else. I was waiting for you, for this moment." Trake said holding him tight against himself and passionately kissing him.

Jarvis had a tear glistening in the corner of his eye, "Then, why?"

"I just wanted you to think seriously about what could happen between two sincere lovers, that a time could come when one of them falls in love with another. What would you have done, if I really were in love with Sukin?"

"I would have withdrawn."

"Would you have hated me?"

"Oh no, never!"

"Would you have hated Sukin?"

"Him? No, not him either. I would have envied him, possibly, if he won your love."

"And what if I proposed that you remain my lover, but share me with Sukin?"

"I don't know. I don't think I would like it. But I would possibly have accepted."

"Oh, really? And why?"

"Because I love you. That way I'd not lose you entirely."

"And could you feel love towards Sukin?"

"A ménage a trois? I don't know. Perhaps yes, perhaps no."

"Why yes and why no?"

"If you loved him, I love you and therefore I would possibly be able to love the one you love. But perhaps I could feel him as a rival, who would sooner or later take all your heart and in the end there could be no more space left for me."

Trake kissed Jarvis again passionately.

The boy relaxed, then asked, "Why did you tease me in this way, Master? I was frightened to death."

"Because if you are to prepare a new community composed of men loving each other, you also have to think of this kind of problem. But now... enough, Jarvis. I need you."

"And I need you, Master. Take me!" Jarvis sighed offering himself to the man.

Trake caressed his thighs then pushed his fingers between the boy's cheeks and gently stimulated the warm rear entrance.

"Do you want me inside you?"

"Oh, yes!"

"Now? Right away?"

"Yes."

"How much do you want me?"

"I am crazy for you. Take me." Jarvis gasped seizing the man's waist and pulling him against himself, took his quivering member, and guided it to his palpitating hole, "Take me!"

"Yes, my sweet man, now I will take you." Trake murmured holding the boy's thighs tightly against his chest and pushing his own pelvis forward.

The young man's anus opened to welcome the powerful rod that slowly slipped inside him.

"Ahhh, welcome back, Master! This is marvelous! Ahhh, at last." Jarvis panted shuddering with happiness all over his body.

"Do you like it?"

"And how I like it! Push it all inside. All of it!"

"I love you."

"Say it again."

"I love you, Jarvis, I love you!"

"And I love you."

"Do you feel me?"

"Yes, and it's beautiful. Oooohhh, how much I have wanted it!"

Trake was now all inside the boy, completely, his testicles compressed between his strong thighs and the firm butt of the youth. He parted Jarvis' thighs to free the space between their torsos; he leaned his chest on the boy's chest, and kissed him deeply on his lips. Then started to vigorously move his pelvis back and forth. Jarvis moaned with pleasure and caressed Trake's broad, strong back with his fingertips.

"I love you, my sweetheart."

"I too, Master."

"I like you. I like the way you welcome me in you. You make me feel desired."

Jarvis was happy. His Trake was with him, or rather, in him. He could read in the man's eyes the rapidly growing pleasure. He could feel it in the plunging of the strong, perfect muscles of his virile body. He recalled those words - yes, he too felt dominated and dominator at once, and it was wonderful.

He was feeling the strong vibrant pole slipping inside him in an intimate and delightful caress, the man's groin beating on his butt at each powerful thrust. And at the same time, the man's tongue finding his own in a deep kiss. He started sucking the darting tongue of Trake and made his pelvis rock to increase the penetration's ecstasy for both of them. His fingers brushed the small, dark, turgid nipples of the man.

"Oooh, Jarvis!" the Master moaned, filled with passion.

"Yes?"

"I like so much taking you, so very much."

"I too love feeling you inside me, in this way."

"But I also like very much being taken by you. You will take me, afterwards, won't you?"

"Yes, with pleasure, but now... oh, so... so..." the young man panted under the strokes full of vigor with which the man was taking him. "Oooh, what a strong man you are, Master! So, yes, yes... so..."

After penetrating each other with passion, and giving each other powerful orgasms, as they were falling asleep, worn out but finally sated, Jarvis was held tightly in the Master's arms. He thought he could never find a more complete and wonderful man than Trake, and was deeply happy.

The next day they started to go over Jarvis notes and discuss them.

"You did a wonderful job, my boy! One thing... when you find somebody open with you, instead of telling him about your project, a thing you can do later anyway, you should first ask them what kind of Convivium they dream about. This can give you more hints for your plan, don't you think?"

"Certainly yes. But they seem so resigned to what they have. It seems that they think that everything was always like this and always will be... "

"Of course. Often times new ideas frighten. Because they make demands, a personal struggle, the courage to face the unknown, the will to experiment and to be able to accept one's eventual mistakes. The old ways, however uncomfortable they are, seem far safer. One knows them, knows their risks and limits, not just their disadvantages. Furthermore our whole society, as you well know, shuns the new, resists change. And yet, in the secret corners of the hearts of many, a dream lives, a hope, an ideal. You have to learn to bring them out so that you can enrich further your own dreams, your own hopes, and your own ideals. You have to become a catalyst of the positive forces for those who seek change. If you want to succeed, you have to become a charismatic leader, and the others have to feel that, by following you, their ideals could become reality.

"You see, according to my studies all the Orders were born in this way. The most ancient of them is the Wise. Then one day one of the Wise, unhappy about the exclusive study of the Scriptures, founded our Order of the Mystics. A little later another Wise founded the Order of the Disciplined, and so on."

"But weren't all the Orders founded together by the son of the first Bergalilam?"

"This is the legend, the official version. But if you read the most ancient Commentaries, they talk only about the Wise. Then, in the later Commentaries appear the other Orders, one after the other. In not one of the Commentaries is it said in a clear or explicit way about the existence of the Order of the Esthetes. It therefore has to be one of the last to be founded. I cannot be certain, but possibly the Order of Esthetes is just around two thousand years old. And this, assuming that the counting of the years is real and not legendary..."

"The counting of years? But that is the most easy to do accurately, isn't it?"

"Yes, certainly, one year after the other. But if you try to recall something that happened several years ago, it becomes easy to be mistaken by one, two years in the twenty of your life. And the further back you go, the easier it is to make mistakes. Moreover the canonical copy of the ancient writings was written upon the order of the Galilams Council about one thousand five hundred years ago, to replace the most ancient texts, which were deteriorating. So, after 'checking, verifying and authenticating' them, the order was given to destroy all the ancient copies. So, besides casual subsequent findings, all we have now are the canonical texts of year 3691, and a few fragments dating from around 2900 to 3400. For example nothing remains of the year 72, that is the year of Galil's death, and none of the twenty-nine hundred successive years - just complete darkness."

"But the History of the Nations, that are part of the canonical texts, talk about that period."

"When were they written? The style of the books from the ninth on is more archaic than that of the previous books, and yet, being the ninth, it is presumed to be more recent. Therefore the history going from Galil to the year 1500, judging from the style, was probably written between the end of 2900 to the start of 3500.

"Admitting that whoever wrote them had some more ancient documents to go by, how much is the of the authentic and how much myth?"

"But all this... Why do they continue to teach that all is exactly as it is written, if in reality it is as you say, Master?"

"I can 'think' so, and 'tell' you so, but I can't 'teach' it or I would be cast out with shame. Officially all is true and woes betide unto those who contradict it. This way all is simple. And everything considered, it would not make such a great difference."

"Asides from the fact that possibly it is not God's law that the sexual crimes are to be punished."

"As for the majority this method seems fitting, even if it was demonstrated that it is not a law from God, do you think that anything would change? When in 4396 someone succeeded in causing a doubt on this point, the only answer given was a little change in the formulation. Once the law was applied affirming that it was 'God's and Galil's law'. After that year it is to be said 'God's and Galil's law, as the Saint Tradition grants'. You see, the tradition has been sanctified, and in this way, if even one could demonstrate that a law doesn't come from God, it remains insurmountable, stemming from tradition, that objectively one cannot deny."

"What can I change, then?"

"You? Very little, perhaps nothing at all, but what you start could slowly succeed. The first point is not to clash with the law or tradition, but to correct its application. Pointing out the eventual internal contradictions, but for now not declaring that they show an error, as nobody would accept it, but affirming only that the interpretation or the application needs to be revisited. Truly a job for a giant. Do you want a small example of this? The law says that two men caught by three witnesses in the act of carnal union, should be beheaded. Good - but what is 'carnal union'? A caress or kiss? Nudity of participants? Eliminating these two interpretations, the number of those beheaded would decrease dramatically; about three quarters would be innocent. Moreover, who says that the three witnesses didn't agree to bear false witness just because they have a grudge against the victims?

"And lastly, the law provides that Keepers and United have their own laws about the application of punishments, and you have noticed some of these variations. Well, those are also traditions. Could not the most humane of these become the most often applied? If your new Order would work only on these small points, it would do a great service to get a better society. I really believe that the best way is never to confront these things directly, but to evade the obstacles."

"Master, why do you always talk about my Order and not about our Order? Will you not found it with me?"

"I don't think so. I will be more useful to you remaining with the Mystics, my dear Jarvis."

"But then, we would have to separate!"

"We will remain in close contact, have no doubts."

"But I don't want to be parted from you!"

"You have to make your choice about what is better for you - choosing me and renouncing founding your Order, or choosing the Order renouncing to live with me."

"But why?"

"You didn't want to do your journeys, but now you are happy and convinced, aren't you?"

"But,..."

"Do you trust me?"

"I do, certainly."

"So then, will you do as I am asking you?"

"Is this an order, Master?"

"Not this time, it is just a request. It is for you to make your choice."

"All right. Can I think about this in the coming two years of journey that remain?"

"Certainly, my sweet Jarvis."

And so the month elapsed, too fast even. Notwithstanding they made love each night, (or possibly just because of it?) Jarvis suffered in the parting. He asked himself again while riding on his tour to the north-west: 'Did he perhaps aim too high? The choice he had to make, to renounce his life with his Master or his idea of founding a new Order? Has a man to renounce his love for higher ideals?' Possibly yes. But he still had two years to think about that.

The first Convivium where he stopped was of the Reformed, in their black and violet attire. He was received with the usual joyful simplicity that characterized this Order. The cells were stripped of the unnecessary, much less elegant than those of the Esthetes, less comfortable than those of the Wise, smaller than those of the Mystics. The whole layout of the buildings was also conceived in the same simplicity - less sumptuous than that of the Knights, less austere than that of the Sapient, less majestic than that of the Wise. And yet it was an agreeable ensemble - immersed in the surrounding greenery, the small, low stone and wood buildings gave the feeling of a charming and industrious village. He was assigned a small cell looking out on the maple garden. He set down his belongings and admired the view, from the open window, of the ruddy branches. A Novice, in his black tunic with violet collar and cummerbund, was caring for the garden.

"Hello!" Jarvis said to the boy who turned and, seeing him, smiled.

"A good afternoon to you, Mystic."

"The weather today is very pleasant, is it not?"

"Yes, it makes one's heart sing."

"Are you happy?"

"How could I be otherwise?"

"What is your name?"

"Fresth, Professed."

"Oh, almost the same name as that of one of my childhood friends."

"May I ask you a question, Professed?"

"Yes, certainly."

"You are so young and you are already a Professed. Is this usual amongst the Mystics?"

"No, rather exceptional." Jarvis answered, without pride nor faked modesty.

"Then, you must be an exceptional person."

"I feel I am exactly like any other person."

"Are you traveling for studies?"

"It is so."

"And you will stop here for a month, I heard."

"Right."

"Then I will have time to talk with you again."

"I think so. About what?"

"I am curious to know about the places you visited. I would like to travel."

"When you feel like it, Fresth, I will speak with you with pleasure."

"May I go back to my work, now?"

"Yes, of course. Carry on your tasks, Novice."

The boy was not beautiful, but had a fresh and gentle smile that Jarvis liked at once. And if he desired asking him questions, he could possibly also be ready to answer to his questions. He looked at the boy who was busily working and thought that this boy had an inner beauty flowing out of each of his movements. It was evident that the boy had a deep serenity and a great joy of living.

As he always did, he asked to read the Convivium Chronicles to know its history. Reading them he could become aware of some salient issues, mainly about the subject he had at heart. So, on these points he could then base his questions. This Convivium had been founded only seven hundred years before, by a Master, three Professed and six Acolytes. The sections of the chronicles regarding sexual crimes were rather few, mainly in the first and last years. As usual, it depended on who was the Responsible in the various periods. The actual Responsible was an elderly Professed; notwithstanding in that Convivium there were four Masters. He was in charge for something like thirty-six years! He had to be an exceptional man, as amongst the Reformed the Responsible was elected with secret ballots every five years - therefore he had been re-elected seven times!

He would talk with him as long as he could. In all his prefecture of thirty-six years there had been only three 'moves' and one beheading. Yes, he had to speak with him. So he asked for an audience.

He explained to him the official reason for his journey, which was also explained in summary in his presentation letter.

Then he said, "One of the problems afflicting many Convivium of any Order, are the sexual crimes, Responsible, and how to avoid them."

"Avoid them - an ideal quite impossible to reach. The human being is also made of sexuality. There are those who, just as in my case, have a really tranquil sexuality, easy to control without too many problems, and therefore without special merits. But there are also those who, on the contrary, have a sexuality... how can I say... really lively, gushing, very difficult to keep in check. One has to understand, to help these people."

"During your prefecture, there has been only one death sentence for this crime, is this not so?"

"Yes, unhappily it happened. It was almost as if those two poor boys wanted to be killed - they acted so, that they were caught in a full embrace right where the maple garden now is. By the entire community. They knew we were all going there. I could do nothing different."

"You seem to be pained about that."

"How could I not to be, when I had to decide to cut away their lives?"

"Why do you think they acted so?"

"I asked them. Can you guess what they answered me? 'We love each other, and as this is forbidden, as we cannot live as a couple, we decided to die as a couple'!"

"But if they didn't try to be caught,..."

"That's what I told them also. The younger, an Acolyte, answered that they were tired of having to love each other always with a thousand subterfuges and being able to make love so seldom, and always filled with fear. So, they decided to put an end to that painful at least for them, situation by those drastic means."

"Do you think that there are many in their predicament?"

"Living a hidden love, or at least a sexuality? I can't know, but I think that, in any Convivium, there could be between thirty and fifty per cent. This counting only those who, at least occasionally, have physical intercourse. Many more if we count those who also desire it, but are able to bridle their instinct. You see, we can't possibly behead half of all our Conviviums, we would cover this planet with blood."

"So then, what can be done?"

"What can be done? If I had the answer, I would be a new Galil. We can watch, counsel, so that we avoid tragedy. Make the candidates understand, with the utmost serenity, that those whose sexuality is too lively would be better not to enter an Order..."

"That is, to marry?"

"For some it could be possible."

"But not for everybody,..."

"Not for everybody, you are right. There are those who, for some unknown reason, could never unite with a woman. That on the contrary, strongly desire a man and are unable to resist. And when such people meet, what can one do? Here I say it, and here I deny it, because I know I am contradicting the law, but in that case one can only advise them to act with the utmost prudence, and not to make their life a hell. Some of them, exactly for the intensity of the mutual love, become able to love everybody, to spread love around them and they become the best of the Reformed I ever met. I repeat, here I say it, and here I deny it, you understand me,..."

"I thank you very much for being so candid with me."

"Having been a Responsible for so many years, it's because I'm able to judge men, and I know I can trust you."

"I would like to speak with somebody who is living with the situation we talked about. With whom do you advise me to talk?"

"Officially... with nobody, or else I would at least have to move them. You cannot ask me to say names. If you are sensitive, as I think, you will be able to become aware, using tact and prudence."

"Thank you very much, Responsible."

"May I be the one to ask a question, Professed?"

"Of course."

"We talked about many problems, but I feel that the one you have more at heart is exactly this. Why?"

"You really know men. You deduced correctly. You trusted me and I want to trust you. I too love, and am loved back, by a man in my Convivium."

"I thought so, but this is not enough to explain your interest,..."

Thus Jarvis exposed his project and concluded, "Do you have any advice to give me?"

"I am speechless, I would never have guessed you aimed so high. You have lot of courage. Perhaps some recklessness also. Advice? Man's heart is able to pass from love to hate incredibly fast. Think carefully on the problem of the discharged United. If the real aim of your Order would be known outside, it could end in a blood bath. And this mainly in the beginnings, when the Order is still young."

"I think that the idea of an Order having as an aim the love amongst men is so unbelievable that in the face of such an accusation very few would believe it. Moreover, being able to catch a whole community in the middle of sexual intercourse, would not however be easy at all."

"But not impossible for those who have the means and the will. Don't underestimate this problem. The foundation of your Order, anyway, could only move the problem's borders. One could certainly live a serene relationship, but only within the walls of his Convivium and only if it is not known outside. But, the others? The problem exists for many living in the villages also, as you possibly know and can guess. What could your new Order do for them? Another piece of advice - avoid letting your Conviviums become a place of orgies and avoid placing sexual activity as the first goal of your new Order. Act in such a way that no one enters your new Order only because there he can give vent to his sexual desires. If you succeed in that, it could become one of the most beautiful places where one can live. When man can live his real dimension without tragedies, serenity accompanies him and radiates from him. I wish you the best of luck."

"You are talking to me as though this were not just my 'dream',.. do you think I could succeed?"

"I am not a clairvoyant and even less a prophet,.. but I would not be astounded to hear one day that you succeeded in your vision."

Jarvis, after his meeting with the Responsible, thought that it was possible that their Elder, Fares, also adopted a similar attitude, and for this reason he assigned him to Master Trake. Really a Responsible could transform a Convivium into a serene place or an unlivable one. In some of the Orders the Responsible were chosen by the superiors, in a few he was elected, and at times he was chosen or elected for life, at times for a period which was, according to the different orders, from a minimum of three to a maximum of seven years. What would be the best solution? Election for a seven-year term, possibly? But with the proviso that the superiors could remove him? He had to think on this problem also.


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