Title: The Hot Seat
Series: Little Fantasies
Julien squinted to read the numbers on the microwave that glowed red in the dark kitchen. Four in the morning? He thought to himself. That can't be right! Then he shook his head. Two tech geeks in the house? Of course, the time is correct. Lyrics from an Elton John song drifted through his mind. "It's four o'clock in the morning. Dammit!" Julien could think of a few more choice words to shout, but kept them locked behind his lips. He didn't want to wake Alex. He preferred to have his meltdown in private.
Today was the meeting. The Meeting, Julien thought the words in capital letters. A meeting a month in the making. With an irate client and the company he worked with. Julien was the consultant; not the main player in this contentious meeting. However, his presence was still requested. He didn't know exactly how the meeting would go so his imagination ran wild. All he knew was that the client was not happy. There was a million different ways that this could play out. He played each likely and unlikely scenario in his head over and over again. With each cup of coffee a new nightmarish scene was detailed in his mind.
"You've not showered yet?"
Alex's question startled him. Showered? He turned and looked at the time on the microwave. Seven, fifteen! Where had the hours gone! "Shit! I need to leave in fifteen minutes!"
Julien jumped up from the kitchen chair and ran down the hall. In the bathroom, he grabbed the electric razor his mom had gotten him years ago. He preferred a regular razor, but when he was in a hurry, the electric one worked well. Running the razor over his face, he walked into the bedroom and quickly dressed in khaki's and a dress shirt. Dashing back into the bathroom, he glanced in the mirror. The stubble that had grown overnight was gone. After throwing the razor on the counter, with a mental notation to charge it tonight, he quickly brushed his teeth. Striding down the hallway, he almost ran head first into Alex.
"Calm down. You'll make it on time," Alex reassured him.
"I'll calm down as soon as this day is over," Julien gritted out.
"Do you want a spanking?" Alex asked casually.
Julien was powerless to stop his jaw from dropping to the floor. A spanking right before work? Right before this meeting? Was Alex out of his mind? Julien could only stare at his lover in shocked silence.
"Spankings tend to calm you down; I thought maybe you might want one," Alex explained as Julien pulled out his work backpack.
"Are you out of your ever loving mind? I can't go to work after being spanked!" Julien spat out.
"I offered a spanking to calm you down but if you continue to talk like that I can give you a punishment spanking."
Julian's heart stopped, his stomach dropped to his feet, and then all the sudden his heart started racing. Since when did Alex talk in that sexy, scary tone? The whole spanking thing wasn't even Alex's idea! How dare he start taking control now! Julien opened his mouth to ask his husband that when he had a sudden thought. This was kind of....exactly, kind of....what he wanted.
"Um...no, thank you," Julien squeaked politely. Slipping the backpack on, he walked to the front door. Clearing his throat, he blurted out, "But, um, thanks for the offering."
Julien couldn't believe the blush that flared in his cheeks when Alex winked at him and said, "Anytime."
He could still hear Alex's chuckle as he shut the front door. Once in his car, his thoughts were firmly on the meeting. Traffic seemed heavier and Julien swore he hit every traffic light red. By the time he got to the office, his stomach was rolling. Too much coffee on an empty stomach. Sending a silent plea to the fates that his stomach didn't rebel, Julien parked and slid out of his car.
Walking into the office, the client, and Julien's supervisor was waiting at the front desk. Discreetly taking a deep breath, Julien smiled and said, "I hope I haven't kept you waiting."
"Not at all," Neil, his supervisor, reassured him. "The meeting was scheduled for eight this morning and it's five 'til now."
Seeing the client's lips tighten, Julien nodded in gratefulness to Neil. Julien knew Neil was setting the hierarchy before the meeting even started. Taking one more deep breath, Julien followed the other's into the meeting.
Three hours later, Julien walked out of the office, shook hands with the client, and started down the hall to his office. The meeting was a tense and stressful as he'd anticipated. He was in desperate need of a couple aspirins. Or maybe a whole bottle of them! His stomach couldn't possibly get any worse. At least he wasn't the one in the hot seat. Hot seat? Suddenly he stumbled over his feet. Or maybe it was a shadow that he tripped over. But he thanked every god he knew of for the wall that saved him from face-planting on the floor.
He wondered if the term 'hot seat' was coined after someone had been spanked? Julien also wondered if he'd taken Alex up on his offer to give him a hot seat, would he be calmer? Would the acids in his stomach be diluted?
A hand clamping down on his shoulder startled Julien out of his thoughts. "What a meeting, eh? Why don't you take the rest of the afternoon off. We'll debrief tomorrow morning. Give us both a chance to let it settle."
After thanking Neil, Julien didn't waste time. He gathered up his backpack and headed to his car. The outrageously early morning, the building stress of the meeting, and the sudden release of tension as soon as the meeting was over, Julien wanted nothing more than to go home. His thoughts were on Alex and a hot seat.
Pulling up to their house, Julien saw Alex standing in the doorway. The sight of the man who knew him so well, made him feel like a teenager in love. Stepping out of the car, Julien ran and jumped into Alex's unsuspecting arms. Wrapping his legs around the man's waist, he held on tight to Alex's shoulders as the man stumbled backwards.
"Woah! I'm not as young or as strong as I once was," Alex laughed. "I'm taking it the meeting went well?"
Kissing him on his lips, Julien laughed too. "No, it was as bad as we thought it would be. What are you doing home?"
Shifting Julien in his arms, Alex carried him into their home. "I figured Neil would send everyone home and knew you'd need me."
Resting his head against Alex's, Julien fell in love with him all over again. "I should have trusted you and taken you up on the early morning spanking. Why didn't you set out the thermometer?"
Sitting down on the couch, keeping Julien straddling him, Alex answered, "I thought about it. But the thermometer represents dominance. I felt like this was something else."
"Yeah," Julien drawled out. "It really would've been. I thought about it on the way home."
"Yeah. We've used spankings for sex, for fun, even a couple times for discipline," Julien said. "Maybe we can include spanking....really discipline...for other things."
Nodding, Alex agreed.
"We have a safe-word if things get too intense. And the thermometer for dominance. I thought maybe we could have a word for whatever this is. A verbal signal. One we can both use. You saw I needed it this morning, so it can be for both of us."
"Makes sense," Alex replied. "Do you have a word already picked out?
Julien grinned. "Of course! Hot seat."
Alex tilted his head. "Why not Genesis? Since your safe word is Armageddon, Genesis makes sense."
"Yeah, it does," Julien laughed. "But I kind of like hot seat. You know, like, I'm in the hot seat. What do you think?"
"I think it's a great word. And boy, you are definitely in the hot seat."
The deliberate tone in Alex's voice had Julien's stomach tightening in that scared, aroused, confused way that he loved so much. The feeling didn't go away when he almost fell as Alex stood. With a few grunts, Alex had a steady hold on him.
"We'll take this in the bedroom, and I'll make sure your seat is hot," Alex growled.
Holding on tight, Julien laid his head on Alex's shoulder. Another little fantasy would be played out. One he didn't even know he had.