The wheels of the airplane touched down on the runway with a mighty screech. Today was the day that Holt finally made it to California. He was a tall, athletic young man with flawless skin and sweet, inviting eyes. His fashion-forward clothes could easily lead someone to believe that he was a high fashion model rather than a boy from a midwestern farm.
He arrived in California to pursue his studies as an attorney at UCLA University.
For as long as Holt could remember, he dreamt of leaving the family farm to pursue a career as a successful attorney in a big city like Los Angeles.
Monday was his first day of law school. He was as nervous and excited about his new life. Holt knew that once school started, all his time would be focused on his studies. Before he settled in to pursue his higher education, he wanted the opportunity to have some fun. So, he decided to go to Disneyland!
The day was warm, the weather ideal, and the park teemed with cheerful families and happy couples. Everyone was having a wonderful time.
Disneyland was infinitely grander than he expected. It was easy to get turned around in the crowds and lost in the many areas of the park. But Holt found a quiet corner, situated himself beside a tree, and unfurled a map. Which way was Fantasy Land? He wondered.
Barely five minutes passed before a deep baritone voice from behind inquired, “What are you looking for? Perhaps I could help?” Holt lowered the map and stared. Could his eyes be deceiving him?
Before him stood the guy he had dreamt of his whole life. The man had a full head of luscious short dark hair and big inviting puppy dog eyes. His chiseled cheekbones accented two of the most luscious lips Holt had ever seen. Tall and muscular, this was indeed a perfect specimen of manhood.
A smile accompanied the man’s inquiry, “How could I be of service? You appear lost.” Holt blushed and couldn’t help laughing because the man in front of him was a charming prince. The dark stranger was a character in costume, complete with a white sash and tight revealing leggings. The combination of his muscular legs with an impressively large bulge above it made the costume surprisingly revealing for an amusement park full of children, Holt mused. Maybe it’s too much for the kids, but not so for him.
Holt caught his breath and answered, “I’m looking for Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. I was told it’s an oddly fun and delightful ride.”
The prince smiled and replied, “An excellent choice! It’s one of my favorites! But rather than visiting there, may I make another suggestion?” He asked with a sly smile. “If you’re looking for a memorable experience, then come with me!”
Sure! Holt squealed in his head; I’ll follow those sexy leggings anywhere. Plus, who am I to argue with Royalty?”
As the prince lead him through the park, Holt’s excitement was growing by the minute.
Where is he taking me? His castle? I’ve always wanted to be taken to the tower!
The prince gave a reassuring smile as they approached a secret door in a secluded corner of the park. “These passages are designed for just us cast members. They’re made so we can enter and exit the park undetected. I think you’re in for quite the treat.”
The prince broke character as he whispered, “My name’s Ben, by the way.” Holt smiled; he was pleased that this strapping hunk of a man wanted him to know his true identity. “My name’s Holt. It’s short for Holton”.
Prince Ben once again leaned in, “Here’s another secret… I’m not really a prince.” He confided with a hearty laugh.
“As long as you’re in that outfit, you’re a prince to me.” Holt fired back with a flirtatious glance.
Holt was shocked and delighted at the sight behind the secluded wall. As the two men entered the park’s back area, the cavernous space bustled with animals, workers, costumed characters, and giant, parade floats.
“You’ll be on the castle float with me. I’m allowed to bring one park member with me to ride the parade. So as soon as I spotted you, I wanted you to be my guest,” Ben told him.
The two men assumed their positions on an impressive float. Surrounding them were mechanical characters from a popular movie, along with ornate decorations.
The giant gates to the park suddenly opened, and a blast of fanfare, smoke, and music ushered in the parade. The spectacle delighted the guests. Holt’s face soon began to hurt from smiling. He couldn’t help it, as if the thrilled children waving to him wasn’t enough; the sultry looks from the sexy prince at his side made his heart skip. He was having a truly wonderful time.
The parade made its way through the park’s main street and concluded about an hour after it began. Once the procession was safely behind the walls that separated guests from staff, Holt and his prince climbed down from the float.
“That was one of the best times I’ve ever had in my life. Thank you for that!”
Prince Ben was pleased that he enjoyed it. “My pleasure, I enjoyed it too, but I’m sorry I didn’t get to speak with you or get to know you better.”
“Me too,” Holt confessed.
Prince Ben leaned forward and whispered, “I’m not allowed to ask guests out on dates, but if you promise not to tell anyone, I’d like to take you to dinner.”
Holt chuckled and confided, “You should know that I can’t make that promise… The second you leave, I’m going to call my mom and tell her that I was just asked out by the sweetest, sexiest man alive.”
Prince Ben laughed, “Fair enough. I guess telling mom is fine. Here’s my number; text me, and we’ll make a plan.” He typed his number into Holt’s phone and then looked up at him with his big, puppy dog eyes. “I’ve got to get back to the park. See you Saturday!” He kissed Holt’s hand in a gallant gesture and disappeared into a sea of eager children excited to take a photo with him.
Holt laid in bed later that evening with the thought of his Prince dancing through his head. He wondered if he should wait 24 hours before texting.
Best to play it cool, don’t want to look desperate.
He couldn’t help himself; Ben was everything he wanted in a man, and he needed to let him know now just how much he enjoyed his day with him. So, he typed away on his phone: I had a blast today at the park. The best part of it was meeting you! Wink emoji. Could I have met my prince charming? Heart emoji.
Na, too silly, definitely too desperate! Holt went for the “delete button,” but his finger pressed “Send” instead of “erase,” and the text was on its way.
CRAP! Why did I send that? What a stupid thing to say!
Panic set in. Did I just blow it with that weirdo text?
Before Holt could beat himself up over the text, his phone chirped a response back with a heart emoji in return. “Was it me or the costume? #wink #princecharming.” Holt would be lying if he didn’t admit that he instantly felt better after receiving his immediate response. A simple “both” was all he wrote back. Maybe it wasn’t a disaster after all? His phone chirped again. “Are you free Saturday night? Up for dinner?”
Holt quickly replied with his address and a time. Yup, he definitely didn’t screw this up! He laid back in his bed with a smile on his face, ready for a good night’s sleep and sweet dreams.
Saturday night arrived as well as the time that Ben would be there. The clock indicated eight o’clock, and Holt was ready.
I wonder how “fashionably late” he’ll be? He questioned just as the door buzzed.
Wow. Could it be? Have I finally someone as punctual as me?
As he swung open the door, it revealed Ben standing confidently. He was dressed hip and casual with perfectly fitting jeans, a crisp button-down shirt, and a vintage motorcycle jacket.
His sweet, sincere smile instantly disarmed Holt, causing him to not notice the several large bags and boxes in his arms. “Can I get a little help with these?” He playfully asked, referring to the packages in his hands.
“Oh yeah, of course.” Holt couldn’t help but tease, “Moving in?,” as he looked at all the items.
“Not quite yet,” he laughed as he explained that he thought it would be more fun to bring dinner over and watch a film there rather than going out.
The logo on the bags revealed that Ben had picked up Chinese food. As coincidence would have it, it was from Holt’s favorite restaurant.
“If you say there is General Tao’s chicken in there, I’ll love you forever,” Holt awkwardly promised.
Ben laughed, “It is indeed General Taos. It seems like we are off to a good start.”
As Holt leaned forward to help with all the bags, Ben took that as an opportunity to greet Holt with a kiss. Their lips met clumsily.
“Whoa! Sorry, I didn’t expect that!” Holt exclaimed.
“My bad. Was that, okay? I thought you were leaning in for a kiss rather than to grab the food.”
“It’s more than okay, it was very nice. Just unexpected.”
Ben chuckled and asked, “Then let’s try it again. Maybe I’ll get it right this time!”
Holt leaned forward and greeted Ben with a proper kiss. Their lips lingered longer than a customary greeting. Neither of them wanted it to end nor did they seem to mind the heavy bags weighing down their arms.
“Ah, that was nice. Maybe even tastier than the General Tao’s chicken in the containers!” Holt teased. “I see the beer and all the Chinese food containers, but what’s in that large box?”
Ben smiled mischievously as he answered, “It’s kind of a gift” He continued with a smirk, “It’s a costume.”
Holt chuckled, “You got me a prince costume?”
“No, actually, it’s my costume from the park. I brought it over for me to wear and you to enjoy.” His eyes lit up with the promise of a bit of role-playing. “I hope I’m not being too forward or presumptuous.”
“Not at all.” Holt innocently teased, “I always wondered when my prince would come.”
Ben replied with a mischievous smirk, “Well then, I guess tonight’s going to be the night!”