Realtor Tanner Comb isn’t pleased when he locks himself out of his flat in downtown Pittsburgh after a long Friday at work. It gets better, though, when big, brawny Mag of Magnum Locks arrives to help him unlock his door.
Not only is Mag gorgeous, he has a sense of humor, lightening Tanner’s cranky mood. When the door is open, Tanner invites him in for a drink. The two men enjoy a beer together, plus Chinese take-out and some smooth conversation.
Tanner is a Mr. Single; someone without a boyfriend, and learns Mag doesn’t have one. But something feels right about Mag, unlike the other guys Tanner’s been attracted to. Is he the right man to remove the label of Mr. Single from Tanner’s current dating life?
Approximately twenty minutes after calling Magnum Locks, a beefy, six-two, caramel-colored hairy chap climbed the five floors in my building with a red toolbox at his side. He sported a pair of tight jeans, tan work boots, no belt, and a chest-tight, sky blue tee with his company’s name and two entwined keys over his heart. He introduced himself, “I’m Kurt Magnum. You can call me Mag.” He looked down at his phone. “You must be Tanner Come.”
“Comb,” I correct him. “Not come.”
He chuckled. “Good thing. That would suck to be named after sticky, ejaculation fluid.”
I couldn’t help myself and smiled. Mag seemed to have a fun sense of humor. Plus, he was good looking, which immensely helped my shitty mood: big chest, big shoulders, big smile, big everything. Nice.
“Looks like my office spelled your last name wrong. Sorry about that.” He then joked, “I’ll make sure to whip my man-boy, Thad.”
He stepped up to the flat’s door at 5-C, slightly bent over, studied its brass door knob, lock, and rattled off, “It’s a Kwikset 450P. Basic stuff. No problem.”
I stood behind him and checked out his massive splay of back and broad shoulders. “Which means?”
He looked over his right shoulder, dazzled me with his creamy brown eyes and thick head of matching hair, and said, “That you can be in your flat in less than six minutes. Then you can start enjoying your weekend like the rest of the city.”
“You sound confident.”
He fiddled with his red toolbox, opened it, pushed tools this way and that way, and found what he was looking for. “I sound confident because I’m a professional and know my locks. And I can tell you that you’ve had a rough day and probably need a strong drink.”
“How can you tell that I need a strong drink, Mag? Are you clairvoyant?”
He used a special tool that looked like the letter L in the lock beneath the door’s brass knob, twisted the tool to the left, then to the right. “I’m not clairvoyant, but my Aunt Hilda is. She’s a delight. You’d love her. Big red hair. Big high heels. Too much lipstick. Big skirts. Big boobs. I love her. Plus, she smokes cigars. Loves them. People think she’s a man in drag because she has a deep voice, but she’s not. Vagina all the wall. She loves men. All sorts of men. I don’t judge her for that. Never have. Never will.”
I wanted to ask him how much he knew about vaginas but thought it rude. Instead, I said, “I did have a bad day. And you’re right, I do need a strong drink. If you can get this door unlocked and open in six minutes, we can celebrate your success with a cold beer ... That is, if you like a German IPA.”
“Deal. I love German beer.” He paused, moved the L gadget in the lock again to the left, then the right. “You look German, Mr. Tanner Comb.”
On his knees, he tilted his head upwards and to the right, checked me out. I did look German, just like my momma. Blond hair. Blue eyes. Round face. But I was tall like my father. Six-one. No fat around my middle because I worked out. Muscular in all the right places. Pecs he could hang on and do a string of pull-ups. Thighs like oak stumps. Long feet. Big dick like Uncle Charlie, my momma’s brother, who just happened to do queer porn in the early nineties.
“Tanner,” I told him. “Call me Tanner. And yes, I’m German. It’s on my mother’s side. She’s originally from Berlin.”
Why he winked at me after my comments, I will never know. But I didn’t mind. Why would I? Flirting with a realtor wasn’t against the law, or unprofessional in my mind. Did Mag find me good looking? Was he interested in more than letting me in my flat and having an IPA with me? Who knew?
None of that mattered, though. What mattered was his next question, which sort of blew me away, and changed our game between locksmith and realtor. As he fidgeted with the lock, using two L-shaped tools on its circular structure, clicking metal against metal against metal, he said, “Tanner, may I be frank, and somewhat inappropriate regarding a question I have for you?” He turned his attention back to his work.
Hmmm ... What did he want to ask me? Did he want to know if I was gay? Was I a batter or catcher? Did he want permission to spin around, undo the zipper on my chinos, and have a meat dinner? Did he want to know if I had a boyfriend, willed to put the moves on me? Honestly, he could have wanted to ask me anything, being frank and inappropriate. And I was ready for whatever it was, enjoying those six minutes (or less) at my flat’s front door with him, realizing that he was making a shitty day turn out to be rather agreeable.
“Have at it, Mag. Be frank and inappropriate. I’m all ears.”
He did a half spin to his right, looked up at me, dazzled me with his brown eyes yet again, shared a semi-smile that ever-so-slightly melted me, and asked, “Those chinos you’re wearing, where did you buy them?”
I huffed, grinned. “That’s what you call frank and inappropriate?”
“Yeah, of course! I’m here on business. What did you think I was going to ask you?”
My face felt red and warm, embarrassed with the thoughts that raced through my mind.