No Regrets


By rockhopper

It had been a year since my transfiguration.

In that time Adam and I had seen things I thought no one would ever see and did things I thought no one would ever do. We had visited each continent and most of the major cities of the world. We had lunch in Paris and dinner the same day in New Orleans. We had been to the moon (which is quite lovely), Mars (which is interesting), Venus (I don’t recommend it) and Jupiter (weather is awful).

Most of our time was, of course, spent on earth. We never failed to attract attention. To look at Adam is to see what a man is supposed to look like: preternaturally beautiful and strong. And now, I looked nearly as incredible as he. My former paunchy, wimpy body was an increasingly distant memory. My arms, shoulders, chest and legs were as I had only dreamed they could be. Men and women both looked us longingly.

I had never been so happy. You see, Adam had brought me into his world. I was like him. I was now immortal and omnipotent.

But I wondered. Adam was nearly a thousand years old. He said he had never found anyone before who loved so completely, but I still wondered.

“My darling,” he smiled as we soared over the Atlantic Ocean en route to London for the opening of the theatre season, “Why are you pondering what is long past?”

“Adam, I just want to know. You said there had been others before. I just want to know who. And when? I ”

“Peter, Peter Hooper, there has never been one like you. I waited centuries for you. But, yes, I have loved other men. And yes, there was once another whom I offered immortality.”

“What happened?”

Adam flew under me and looked into my eyes and smiled. Those incredible dimples appeared around his goatee. He stroked my ear and cooed “It was nearly thirty years ago. His name was Jim.”

“Where did you meet him?”

“I found him in the same way I found you, but I didn’t pose as his neighbour.”

“What did you do?”

Adam signalled for me to stop. He sat cross-legged in mid-air and motioned for me to sit by him. He put his strong left arm around me, his biceps brushing against my shoulder and neck. “Peter, please remember that this happened a long time ago. You were a boy then.”

I smiled at Adam. “I understand. So, Jim, was it? How did you meet?”

Adam kissed my forehead. “Always curious. Always wanting to know more. Two of the reasons I love you. As for how it happened...” He trailed off and stroked his chin. “Peter, what do you think of my body?”

“Are you kidding?”

“No, really.”

“It’s incredible! You have the most beautiful body I’ve ever seen. It’s perfect!”

“Yes, well, as you know, I look as I do because I choose to look this way. I always have. I always loved this kind of body. Until the 20th Century, few men were able to have a body like mine. There were exceptions, of course. You should have seen the model for Michelangelo’s David! He didn’t nearly do him justice! Anyway, in the 1970s, the whole bodybuilding thing took off.”

“Yeah. The whole Arnold-Pumping-Iron-Thing”.

“Right. So I found a young man. I found him in a gym where he was seeking to perfect his body.”

Adam is the only person I know who can say “seeking to perfect his body” and not sound pedantic. “So what did you do?” I laughed. “Ask if he needed a spotter?”

“Actually, yes. It wasn’t a cliché yet.”

“If you say so. What happened after you offered to spot Jim?”

“He said ‘Sure’.”

Adam began to project images of that time into my mind. It was 1977 and he was somewhere in the Southern United States. There was Adam, standing in all his glory, wearing a skin-tight grey wife-beater and equally tight black shorts. He was spotting a nice-looking man with a decent, but not spectacular build. Presently the man on the bench, whom I guessed to be Jim got a bit tired and couldn’t lift any more. Adam lifted the barbell and placed it on its rack with no apparent effort.

“Wha..” Jim looked startled. “You just picked that up like it weighed nothing.” “Nothing is about right. That’s 180, hmmm...” Adam grabbed the barbell with one hand and began to do curls. His beautiful biceps flexed as he moved the weight back and forth. He smiled that devastating smile. “Child’s play!”

“How...that’s incredible!” Jim got up and shook his head. “How long have you been working out?”

“Oh, almost 900 years.”

Jim chuckled. “I’ll bet you could teach me a lot. I’d love to have a body like yours.”

“Give it time and you will.”

Adam began to speak to me. “So the days and weeks passed. I helped to train Jim and his body began to change–the old-fashioned way. Jim warmed up to me and we began socialising away from the gym as well.”

Adam fast forwarded a few months. Jim had buffed up. His body was still nowhere near as spectacular as Adam’s, but his shoulders and chest were broader, his waist narrower and his arms and legs fuller. They were sitting in a restaurant having dinner. Adam was smiling his enigmatic smile. Jim was laughing and shaking his head.

“Adam, I’ve never known anyone like you.”

“That’s true. I doubt you have.”

“You’re funny, man. And I really appreciate your training me. Are you sure I can’t at least get dinner? It’s the least I could do, after all you’ve given me.”

“Dinner is already taken care of. And I told you, I have no need of money.”

“Must be nice, being independently wealthy or whatever.”

“Oh, there are definite advantages to my particular situation.”

Jim laughed again. “Well, I still appreciate it.”

Adam smiled even more enigmatically. The image dissolved. I interrupted at this point. “Adam, was Jim gay? He seems fairly clueless about it, honestly, but the way he looks at you...”

“Patience, Peter,” Adam said hushing me. We fast forwarded a few more months. Jim was removing his wife-beater, having just finished a workout. He and Adam were alone in the locker room. Jim was now incredibly cut, with a fabulous muscles bulging all over his body He smiled as he looked in the mirror. He did a double biceps pose, “Look at these babies!” Putting his arms down he began bouncing his pecs in time while he hummed the “William Tell Overture”.

“Very good, Jim,” Adam beamed. “I’m proud of you.”

“I couldn’t have done it without you, man. I don’t know how I’ll ever be able to thank you.”

“Well, you could hear me out.”

“What’s up?”

“Jim, I won’t beat around the bush here. I love you.”

Jim looked puzzled. “You’re gay, man?” Jim began to look very frightened, “Hey, I’m not...”

Adam stared into Jim’s eyes and commanded, “The truth”.

It’s impossible for a mortal to resist Adam’s will. Jim told the truth.

“I–I–I’ve always been attracted to men. And I’m attracted to you. You’re so beautiful. You’re gorgeous. But, it’s wrong.”

“It’s who you are. Who you were meant to be.”

“But,” he hesitated. “ I–I–I never talked about this with anyone before. When I was a kid I used to mess around with other boys, but I knew it was wrong. It’s not what God intended.”

“‘What God intended’? Why would the creator of all things make a creature only to expect him to act against its nature? Embrace your true self. It’s already who you are. And look what you have waiting for you!” Adam winked and bounced his pecs.

“I don’t know.”

“Jim, it’s okay. There’s no reason to be ashamed. You’re a wonderful, caring man. You have a beautiful soul. And I do love you.” Adam drew closer to Jim and kissed his lips. Jim appeared to enjoy it.

“Oh, man, what if someone walks in on us?”

“No one will walk in.”

“How do you know that?”

“Ah, yes, that’s the other part.” Adam stroked his beard for a moment. “Jim, I’m guessing you know a little bit about the Bible.”

“Yeah, I guess. I never missed Sunday School when I was a kid. I still go sometimes.”

“Do you remember Genesis 6:4?”

“Not off the top of my head.”

Adam quoted “‘‘There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.’ The Hebrew word which King James’ little committee rendered as ‘giants’ is ‘nephilim’.”

“Okay. That sounds familiar.”

“Nephilim is but one name used for this kind: Those all-powerful beings who protect and guide humanity. They are not gods or angels. All cultures have some legend about these. And I am one.”


“Jim, I am not a human being. I am a member of a higher race. And I want you to join me.”

“Okay. You’re crazy!”

Adam sighed. “They always need a demonstration.” He waved his hand. The locker room changed into a forest. Carpet became grass. Lockers became trees. The stool on which Jim had been sitting became a very large mushroom. The ceiling became a clear blue sky.

“What the?”

Adam smiled. “Jim. I love you. Come with me and you will be like me. You will have all you have ever dreamed and more: immortality, omnipotence.”

Jim was clearly conflicted. He was very obviously aroused by Adam and his power (okay, who wouldn’t be?), but he was also very, very afraid.

“You did all this?”

“A very small sample. And I offer it all to you.”

“No! This is wrong! You–you’re the devil!”

“The devil? Good Lord, don’t be ridiculous! We are part of the natural order.”

“You’re here to tempt me! You want to drag me down to hell with you!”

“Hardly!” Adam began to look annoyed. “What I am offering is the greatest gift you ever have been or ever will be offered.”

“No! This is all so wrong! I can’t believe I almost...” Jim began to charge at Adam.

Adam waved his hand again. The forest turned back into a locker room. Jim was frozen in place.

“You dare!” Adam glared at Jim. “You dare attack me! After all I have done! After what I have offered you. Do you have any idea of what I could do to you? I could crush you like a grape. I could turn you into a gnat. I could turn you to dust and blow you away. I could simply erase you. You would not only not exist, you would never have existed. No one, not even your mother, would remember that you had ever been born.” Adam stopped a moment and composed himself and then turned to Jim tenderly.

“But I will not do such things. Such is not my way. I do love you, Jim. I never meant to hurt you. I am so sorry. I thought you would be the one. Even one of my kind can be wrong. You have a beautiful soul. Don’t taint it with hatred. It will be your undoing. As I once told William Shakespeare, ‘To thine own self be true’”. Adam then kissed Jim. “You will forget all about me. Good-bye.” Adam then disappeared and Jim came to and looked very perplexed.

“Adam, I’m so sorry,” I kissed his cheek. “What became of Jim?”

Adam looked very solemn. “He repressed everything. He became a member of a fundamentalist church and married an overbearing woman. They had two children, a girl who is now a prostitute and a boy, who is serving ten years in prison for armed robbery. He is one of the most miserable people you can imagine.”

“You didn’t...”

“No, he did it to himself. He refused what he was and could be and instead became a nasty troll.”

“Poor thing. I know you loved him.”

“It’s all right, Peter. Even I can’t change the essence of a person. There was so much potential for good in Jim, but her squandered it. You, on the other hand, were already so beyond the rest of humanity.” He held me in his strong arms and caressed me gently. “I found someone so much better.”

I turned to butter (not literally, of course). I still couldn’t believe all this had happened to me. The evening wear we were both wearing dissolved. We did not need it for what would do. I kissed Adam’s perfectly-shaped right pec: Hard as diamond, covered with just the right amount of silky hair over the softest skin you could imagine. He flexed it and it leapt in return to my kiss. I looked into the steely eyes of the one I love. “No regrets, then?” I asked.

Adam smiled, not at all enigmatically now and kissed me. “No regrets!”

We missed the theatre opening that night. I was really looking forward to it, but something else came up. I love the theatre, but it’s nothing compared to making love in the clouds. •

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