We all know that we should do good deeds, but not because we expect to receive a reward in return. However, if we do unexpectedly get back more than thanks, that’s a great bonus. And if our bonus reward far outweighs the small favor we did, must we repay it?My name is Thorne and I’m a regional manager for a national finance company. That’s probably all you need to know, and I could leave the rest up to your imagination, but that’s not my style. I’m a stickler for details, so here they are. I’m forty-two, six-foot-two and weigh a hundred and seventy-three.I have light brown hair which has a reddish tint to it and is beginning to thin. I wear a full, closely-trimmed beard. For too much information I can add my body hair is of a redder hue.There’s a gym on the third floor of the building our offices are in. Three times a week I have a power shake for lunch and do an intense workout, take a shower, and go back to work, so I’m in good physical shape.And there’s one more little detail that’s important to this story: I’m gay. It’s not a fact I’m ashamed of, but also not one I feel a need to advertise. It’s not obvious and I’ve always kept my personal life separate from my work, so I’m pretty sure none of my coworkers know, but if they do it isn’t apparent or important.That doesn’t mean I don’t look at guys that appeal to me. I’m not dead, just cautious. So it was that I noticed the new guy soon very shortly after he started work. He was the assistant manager of the auditing department, which meant there was no awkwardness in introducing myself.His name was Kevin, he was probably four years or so younger than me, two inches shorter and a dozen pounds lighter. Do you think I scoped him out enough?He was one of those people who had clear blue eyes which contrasted with his black hair. I’ve always thought that was an interesting combination. He also had a beard exactly like mine.Of course, none of this is what had caught my attention. When I first saw him he had shed his suit coat and even from the other side of the open office floor, it was clear to see he had a very well formed body: small, thin, wiry, compact and muscular. All of those terms passed through my head.When I got up close and we shook hands, I saw the face matched the body. He was fucking plain handsome.Although rules are made to be broken, I didn’t exactly break my rule of keeping my social and business lives separate, but I bent it pretty much double. I knew I wanted to make this guy a part of my life, meaning I wanted to be around him as much as possible.Being higher in rank, it wasn’t difficult getting him to accept my invitations to have a morning coffee break together, a lunch in a nearby restaurant, a drink after work, a game at the local ballpark.I’m a good talker, but I’m a better listener. I’ve learned the questions to ask to get somebody to open up and talk about themselves. I know the things to say about myself to get them to reveal more about themselves. And in Kevin’s case, it helped almanbahis şikayet in that I was really interested in knowing about him.In short, I liked him a hell of a lot. But I still had that reluctance about putting the make on someone I worked with. If it went wrong it could make for a really fucked up situation. And everything I got from my conversations with Kevin told me he was a straight guy who didn’t have a current girlfriend, but who was on the lookout for the woman he wanted to marry.In my sex life, I’m an alpha, which means I like to be in charge. I’m the guy on top. I think some of that is why I’m a successful manager, and why I try to make relationships with people go my way. With Kevin, there was something there that kept me interested, wondering. I felt that there was more to come, and I could guide the way they progressed.And then serendipity came into play.Nicole is my younger, divorced sister. When she got married, I was in Iraq with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit deployed in Operation Desert Fox. That was the one where Saddam Hussein was refusing to destroy his “weapons of mass destruction”. We all know how that ended.At any rate, I obviously didn’t attend the wedding. They moved to Dallas and when I returned to civilian life, thankfully before we invaded Iraq, I choose not to go visit them, so I never even met him.The odd thing is, he later left her for an older woman, which drove her crazy. It turned out he’d been cheating on her for most of their six-year marriage. She never wanted to talk about it, so that’s about all I knew about it, but lately, she’d lamented the fact she was getting older and hadn’t snagged a guy yet.She surprised me by dropping by the office one afternoon when Kevin and I were having coffee in the Starbucks off the lobby of the building. I introduced them and immediately saw the flirtation start. It quickly grew from there.The quickness should have set off an alarm, I suppose, but I was happy for both of them. In a short time I was seeing much less of Kevin, but if this was what they wanted and it worked out for them, I was willing to put my doubts and desires aside.It was only a few months until marriage was being mentioned in conversations with both of them. I must admit, my thoughts were that if Kevin became part of the family, it would mean we might form a stronger bond and spend more time together.I know that sounds weird, like opening myself up for longing and frustration, but I really didn’t feel that way. I was pleased for him and for Nicole. I liked being around him that much. I thought of him as a good friend, the kind that began calling each other “bro”.And so it was that in less than six months after first meeting him, Kevin became my brother-in-law. Nicole had come out of her previous marriage with a healthy settlement. She bought a condo in an upscale building. Kevin had been living in the same bachelor pad since he’d arrived in town, so he moved in with Nicole.The hoped-for almanbahis canlı casino stronger bond appeared to become a reality, but spending more time together hadn’t come to fruition.Shortly after the wedding, our company went through an expansion and the auditing department was moved to the floor above the main office. One or the other of us would sometimes make the phone call to suggest lunch together, but water cooler conversations or coffee breaks didn’t exist anymore.In the beginning, I’d issue an invitation for an after work drink, but as a newlywed, he was anxious to get home to the wife. What I didn’t know was that at some point the rush to get home was no longer a young lover’s desire to be with his honey, but a desire to avoid a confrontation.I began to sense that there was trouble in paradise. There were hints in the way he responded to casual questions I innocently asked. That led me to ask more slightly more probing questions. I told you I was a good listener, and little by little I was able to put together the bits of information I gleaned.It was obvious he held back because he didn’t want to say anything negative to me about my sister, but that made me give credence to the things he did say. I guess I should put it down to her bad experience with her first marriage, but it seems she had become overly suspicious.“Any time I’m not home by five-thirty, she demands to know where I’ve been,” he finally blurted out over lunch one day.I mused about this. “Does she accept your explanations?”He shook his head in desperation.“Grudgingly. But you know that at this time of year I have to put in extra hours. I’ll call her and tell her I’m going to be late, and she’ll call back later to check to see if I’m still there.”I thought about the times I’d suggested we have a drink after work, and he’d backed out.“Well,” I started, trying to come up with an excuse for her, “at least when you are there, she lightens up, doesn’t she?”He looked at me like he had a heavy weight he wanted to get rid of, and wished I was the person who could take it off him.On Saturday I called him, which was something I hadn’t done in many months, to ask him if he wanted to go to take in a ball game that afternoon. He put his hand over the mouthpiece of the phone as he asked Nicole if he could go with me.I still could hear her screaming at him that he was a fool if he thought she was going to believe that bullshit. I thought he was trying to tell her to take the phone to verify it was me asking him to go out, but she didn’t give him chance. She was accusing him of all sorts of machinations. I hung up the phone.On Monday Kevin avoided me, but on Tuesday I went up to his office and cornered him. We went to lunch and for the first time had a serious talk about all the shit he was wading through. I now had reason to believe everything he told me and was deeply disturbed by what he had to say. His love life had become a living hell.I wondered if talking to Nicole almanbahis casino would do any good, but he implored me not to. He was afraid that she would take offense to his having revealed their conflicts to me, and I had to agree. The only thing I could offer was a sympathetic ear.He took up that offer. We once again began having lunch together several times a week, and each time he had another diatribe to report. I had no reason to doubt the things he told me were true, and without ever putting it into words, I got a picture of my sister as a shrew.My previous thought that her actions could probably be explained by the shitty deal she’d been handed in her first marriage began to crumble. I now wondered if it could be that she wrecked that marriage with her attitude. Granted her first husband had done far worse than the things she was now accusing Kevin off.Despite all this, he held on, hoping she might have a change of heart. He obviously had loved her, and I assumed still did. He had wanted to have a wife, and she was the one he’d chosen. He’d hoped to make a family, but confessed to me that the love life that was normal during and after the honeymoon was now only a memory.She’d spurned his attempts to revive their lovemaking, and he no longer had a desire to touch her. It was all sad and disturbing. Although he never hinted that he held me responsible in any way, I felt guilty. They’d met through me. That thought I couldn’t shake.On a Friday night, I went out after work to an anniversary party of a gay couple I’d known for several years. The evening made me recognize that my own love life had become a desert. It had been months since I’d had sex.It was after eleven when I got home. I dropped my keys on the hall table when the phone rang. I went into the living room and picked up the receiver.Kevin’s voice came through the line. “Thorne, I know it’s late. Were you sleeping?”“No, Kevin, what’s up”“This is difficult. Look, Nicky threw me out. I’m out in the street.”“Wait, wait,” I interrupted. “You mean you’re out of the house? You can’t get in?”“No. I mean yeah. She locked me out. I don’t have my house keys. I don’t have my wallet, no money, no credit card. I don’t know where to go. Can I come there?”I paused a moment, trying to get this straight in my mind. I’d never expected anything like this.“Why?” I asked. “Why did she do it?”“I came home late. She said I wasn’t working. You know I was. She threw me and my stuff out. Can I…?”I interrupted again. “Yes. Of course. Where are you?”“In my car. Oh, at a Shell station on Roxbury.”“Okay, Kevin. No problem. Come on over. You know where it is, right?”“Yeah. Thanks. I’ll be there in fifteen minutes.”I put down the phone and stood there for a minute. Reality came back and I went into the spare bedroom to put fresh sheets on the bed. I had left this bedroom as it was set up when I moved in here. I had no use of a home office, and I had a TV in the living room and the bedroom, so I didn’t need a den or game room. I had a never before used it as a guest room.The bell rang and Kevin came in with a suitcase and a large cardboard box. Like me, he was still dressed in his coat and tie from work. I noticed for casual Friday he was wearing jeans with a sports coat.