Pairing Foolery


“So, it isn’t just to get the scoop on what’s up with the pairing of the Blake figure skating couple, then.”

“No, it isn’t,” the Boston Globe entertainment reporter, Denise Standish, said to her sports reporter counterpart, Todd Stevens, as they drove down to Colorado Springs from the Denver airport Holiday Inn in a rental car. “Jeff Davenport is engaged to one of their coaches, Tracey Parsons, and he wants to know how and if she fits into any hanky-panky with those pairs skaters.” Jeff Davenport owned the Boston Globe along with a whole hell of a lot of other stuff too. He was quite a catch and so there always was speculation what the woman was after when he was seeing someone seriously. Of course, his current squeeze was quite a catch too. Tracey Parsons had struck gold in women’s singles skating in the last two Olympics, so she was as much a celebrity as Davenport was.

“And I’m finding this out just now?” Stevens asked.

Denise Standish’s response was a bit testy. “You were into your cups on the flight and weren’t much company at the hotel last night. It’s not like we had time and opportunity to discuss our brief. I didn’t know you hadn’t discussed this with Jeff as well.”

“I’m not on ‘Jeff’ terms with Mr. Davenport as you seem to be. And I don’t travel well.”

“And yet you fly all over the country taking in sporting events for the Globe,” she said. She wasn’t giving up testy. She’d jumped at this assignment as soon as she’d heard that Stevens would be the other reporter. Stevens, a former Olympic gymnast, was a dreamboat. All of the women at the paper had been trying their damnedest to get into bed with him, and she’d figured this gave her an opportunity to accomplish that. But, after going to dinner together, he’d said it was time for him to hit the sack, and before she had an opportunity to suggest he didn’t have to do it alone, he was at the elevators, pushing buttons. They hadn’t even been given rooms on the same floor.

“I do what I have to to keep a job,” Todd said. “I know it’s dumb. I have no trouble swinging high off the ground on the rings. But I don’t like being cooped up in a wobbling airplane. I didn’t like flying before I went to work for the Globe, so, what career did I pick? Sports gymnast, which meant I was flying all over the country for a long season. But I’ll be OK—at least until we fly back.”

I don’t want you just OK, Denise was thinking. I want you in bed, the same as most of the other women at the paper want—and they all fume that you are ultrapolite to them but you’ve ignored every signal any of them has broadest to you.

“So, we’re to be spies as well as reporters when we get to the Blakes’ ranch outside of Colorado Springs,” he said as they coasted down I-25 toward Pike’s Peak and Cheyenne Mountain. The pairs figure skaters, Sydney Blake and her new partner, Vlad Starnovic, trained at the Broadmoor Skating Club near the Ice Skating Hall of Fame complex in Colorado Springs. The two had paired up just a year ago, but they’d already won gold in the annual U.S. nationals; followed by a fine sixth-place finish at the 2022 Beijing Olympics, where the top spots were tied up by the Japanese, Russians, and Chinese; and then an even-better fifth-place finish at the Worlds in March. The Globe reporters were descending on them the first week of April to do an article about how they’d risen so fast in the face of changing partners.

For the prior six years, Sydney Blake—initially Sydney Rainer—had partnered with Hank Blake. They’d been married for four years. Then, after a series of sports injuries, Hank had hung up his skates and turned coach at the Broadmoor Club. Sydney hadn’t wanted to stop, and another skater, a Russian-turned-American, Vlad Starnovic, with a previous partner whose father had bought him for her was abandoned. Sydney picked him up, and they were doing better as a team now than the Blakes had done together. Starnovic never had clicked with his previous partner. Someone had heard him say he didn’t like to be a bought man, and the gossip columns had played that up. After Sydney and Vlad teamed up, Hank Blake became one of their coaches.

“Who all is going to be at this ranch we’re going to?” Stevens asked.

“The Blakes. They own the ranch. But Vlad Starnovic and Tracey Parsons live there too. Cozy, no?”

“Yes, that does sound cozy—but in what way, I wonder,” Stevens said. “Who is really paired with who?”

“I think that’s what we’re supposed to find out. The gossip is that Starnovic is fucking Sydney Blake and Hank is being cuckolded, whether wittingly or not. The question there, beyond whether it’s true or not—Starnovic is a real hunk, which has given rise to the rumors and he’d been rumored to be fucking his previous partner—is where Tracey Parsons fits in. Are she and Hank Blake a pair and that’s why he doesn’t seem to mind having lost his wife and partner to the hunky Russian? If so, I don’t think Jeff Davenport wants to pursue marriage with her. He’s already struck out on two marriages.”

“But ankara travesti what we write—”

“Doesn’t have to include everything we find out,” Denise completed for him. “We’re signed up to do a fluff piece on the.”

“So, how do we—?”

“I suggest you concentrate on the men and I’ll take on the women,” Denise said. “I’ve met Tracey Parsons at parties the boss has thrown. On second thought, maybe I should work on Hank Blake as well. If I put some moves on him, maybe I’ll be able to tell whether Tracey Parsons cares.”

Stevens snorted. Denise undoubtedly assumed it was because what she said was funny, and Stevens didn’t care if she thought that. But it was listening to her saying she’d put moves on the skating coach. He had no doubt she could do that—Denise was a sexy bombshell and he was aware that a lot of her newspaper features came out of her use of sex. He was fully aware that she had put the make on him the previous evening and had done so on the plane out from Boston too. He wasn’t really a drunk nor did he hate flying a much as he said he did. He was fully aware she was putting the make on him, and he was having none of it. It was fine with him if she concentrated her sexual energy on Hank Blake instead.

* * * *

The Blakes’ ranch—more of a ranchette, but it connected to mountainous parkland—off Flying W. Ranch Road in the northwest sector of Colorado Springs was a compact, well-maintained horse ranch enclosed by pristine-white board fences. The main house was a rambling log and stone single-story, high-roofed dwelling, with a deep front porch, and a copper roof, painted red. As they approached it, Denise told Todd that it was bought with Sydney’s family money. There wasn’t enough money to be had in competition pairs figure skating to pay for this. The skating complex was on the southern side of the city in the shadow of Cheyenne Mountain, but I-25 and various backroads put their practice rink within a half hour of the ranch.

Where Todd pulled the rental car over was in a parking area between the house and the outbuildings. The nearest building to them was a horse barn, with outdoor areas closed off by white wood-plank fences. One was a training ring, where a tall, muscular, handsome man who, bare-chested above worn jeans and cowboy boots, was guiding a spirited horse around in a circle on a long lead. Closer to where the car was parked was a grazing enclosure, with a couple of thoroughbred horses cantering about. One came over to the fence, hopeful for a carrot or apple, and Todd went to her, luckily with a small apple in his jacket pocket. With a “I’ll see who’s at the house,” Denise went off in that direction.

As Todd fed the apple to the horse and stroked her face, he was addressed from the edge of the training ring. “You must be the reporters from the Boston newspaper.”

“Yes,” Todd said, turning to see the god-like man who had been exercising the horse bare-chested. “I’m Todd Stevens of the Boston Globe.” Their eyes met, they assessed each other, and Todd instantly decided that whatever was going on with this figure skating pairs was more complicated than Denise and he—and probably Jeff Davenport—originally thought.

“I’m Vlad Starnovic, the male half of the skating pair you are writing about.”

Of course you are, Todd thought. Not only did he recognize the man from photographs and video from the Blake and Starnovic skating performances but there also was no question the man was male—he exuded male studly sexuality. His accent hadn’t lost its Russian tinge, which added to the sensuality and strong maleness of the man. Denise had told Todd that Starnovic’s previous partner’s father had bought him from the deep stable of Russian male skaters for her, and having seen photos and videos of the man, Todd hadn’t been able to figure out why the girl had let him go. Now, in meeting him, he had some inkling why.

“I recognize you from the coverage of your performances,” Todd said.

“The mare seems to like you. She doesn’t nuzzle up to many, especially men. You must have something special.”

“I do,” Todd said, giving Starnovic a level look. “It’s the apple I brought.” They both laughed, which served to release a bit of tension that had existed in the air. “I do like working with horses, though. I haven’t always been from Boston. I was raised on a Maryland horse farm.”

“Ah, then we must get you up on a horse while you are visiting us here,” Starnovic said. “There are trails up into the mountain park behind us. I’ll take you riding up there.”

“I would like that,” Todd answered, knowing that much more than just the words used were being expressed in that. He was delighted that the man seemed to be interested in him—that he had passed muster.

“Well, let’s take your bags up to the house. I see that the woman has left you with the heavy lifting. You can meet the others. We’re about to move into liquid hour.”

“Liquid hour?” Todd asked.

“Swimming, in the pool behind the house, and drinks. ankara travestileri Slava is good enough to dictate both as part of our training regimen. We do it for an hour and a half before moving on to dinner and drinks later. And after dinner, there will be more drinks, and that’s when we watch skating films to see where we—and other pairs—have gone wrong or right.”

“I didn’t think figure skaters could do much drinking. And Slava? Who is Slava?”

Starnovic laughed. “Worlds is the last competition of the season. April 1st—tomorrow—ushers in a period when we can let our hair down and go native for a couple of weeks before we have to start rigorous training all over again—at least the rigorous training associated with figure skating. There are other forms of rigorous training to keep out bodies strong and supple. We just exercise differently in these ‘down’ weeks.”

He was smiling at Todd, who, once again, got the impression that there was greater meaning under the surface of the words spoken.

“And Slava. That’s Slava Dantic. He’s our physical therapist. He came from Russia with me when I came to America. We have always been together, although Slava has broader interests than I do. Come, let’s go to the house.” He picked up one of the suitcases and put the other arm around Todd’s shoulders to usher him toward the house. “You did bring a bathing suit, didn’t you, Todd?”

“No, I’m afraid not,” Todd answered.

“No problem, you’ll find a bureau drawer full of them in the guest room you’ll have. I’m sure you’ll find one to set off this very nice body you have. You must have a sport yourself to be in such good shape.”

“I was a gymnast in college,” Todd answered. “But that was years ago.”

“You don’t look like it was long ago. A gymnast. I think that means you must be very flexible, able to go into all sorts of interesting positions.”

Todd shivered a bit. Now that he’d met the Russian skater up close, he couldn’t see how anyone could have a divinely sculpted body to rival Vlad’s.

* * * *

The Blake’s ranch house was spacious, with the communal living areas in the middle and the bedrooms split between two wings, those of the four principles in one direction and the guest wing in the other. By checking out that the wings appeared to be identical and there were four bedrooms, each with its own bath, in the guest wing, Denise concluded that there were four bedrooms in the other wing as well. Assuming this being the case, she couldn’t make any conclusions on who—the two Blakes, Vlad Starnovic, and Tracey Parsons—might be sleeping with who else. There were enough bedrooms for them all to be sleeping alone.

There were a few others in their entourage, but they had their own cottages or rooms in outbuildings in the area surrounding the main house.

Denise was coming out of the bedroom assigned to her, wearing a bikini and carrying a large beach towel, when the housekeeper showed Todd Stevens which bedroom was his. Denise looked terrific. That was one thing about this weekend. All the players were fit and extremely good looking. The Blakes, Vlad, and Tracey kept themselves that way for the needs of their performances—Tracey Parsons was still skating in professional ice shows. Others in the entourage were fit and presentable too. Parsons was the oldest, and she was only midway into her thirties. Fortuitously, Denise and Todd were fit and lookers too. They’d both been athletes at the national level, Todd a gymnast and Denise on the national women’s soccer team, so they fit right in at the Blakes’ ranch. If the reporters hadn’t fit in with great looks and bodies, showing up for “fluid” hour at the swimming pool on the terrace at the back of the ranch house would be quite embarrassing. The swim suits provided in their rooms were skimpy. Denise was wearing a “barely there” bikini. Todd found nothing but brief Speedos. Fortuitously, he was well gymed.

A few more of the entourage were at the pool when Denise and Todd arrived together and were introduced around. Of these, the physical trainer Vlad had mentioned, Slave Dantic, was a standout. His body was perfectly sculpted, in keeping with his dual job as the team’s physical therapist and Blake’s and Vlad’s personal trainer. Denise was immediately smitten with him and Slava equally obviously was smitten with her.

While Denise and Slave slowly gravitated to each other, Todd was chatting more generally with the rest, collecting tidbits of this and that information on them that might be included in a feature article, and closely watching how they interacted with each other. Who was being bedded by who else? All seemed comfortable with each other, although Tracey Parsons, who Todd found to be a bit masculine in demeanor, which he’d never caught from her performances on ice—while certainly her firm musculature went with the sport she mastered—seemed a bit aloft and reserved. She wasn’t unfriendly, exactly. She just held herself above the rest and obviously expected to be deferred travesti ankara to. The Blakes might own this ranch, but Todd bet that Tracey was the decisionmaker.

The “fluid” hour, dinner, and an ice-skating tape shown afterward of the recent Worlds competitions went well. The tapes were shown to give Denise and Todd some background material and the two didn’t have the heart to reveal that they’d already seen the tapes multiple times.

When the show—and the evening—were wrapping up, Todd noticed that Denise and the physical trainer, Slava Dantic, had melted away during the showing. No one else remarked on it or seemed to notice. As Todd entered the hallway of the guest wing, though, the sounds coming from Denise’s bedroom told him that they had already found each other and were into physical training. The door was open a crack and, as Todd passed by toward his own room, he peeked in. The two—bodies beautiful—were naked on the bed, Denise under Slava. Slava, well hung and in full erection, was practicing pushups on Denise’s body, and, clutching his shoulder blades with her fingers, rubbing his calves with the heels of her feet, and emitting low, guttural moans, Denise was doing coordinated pelvic thrusts. They both looked like they certainly knew how to do this to gain the fullest pleasure and effect.

Todd just smiled, glad that Denise had found entertainment so quickly. Maybe she wouldn’t have enough energy now to throw herself at him.

* * * *

“I trust this part of your visit won’t be covered in your newspaper feature,” Vlad Starnovic murmured into Todd Steven’s ear. He then nipped the ear with his teeth and laughed to hear the surprised little yelp that emitted from the Boston Globe reporter’s lips. “Cry out all you want. I enjoy it more. There’s no one but the horses up here to hear us, and they don’t give no shit that I fuck you.” Vlad laughed again. Bigger, stronger, the Russian had no trouble holding the writhing reporter under him, Stevens on his hands and knees in the ferns in the grove of trees on the mountainside above Colorado Springs. Both were naked below the waist, flannel cowboy shirts unbuttoned and flared, as Vlad fucked Todd hard in the doggy position. Their horses grazed off to the side in a small meadow, oblivious to the call of the wild being answered nearby.

Stevens already was panting heavily and letting out little gasps in respond to hard, deep thrusts of the Russian’s thick and long cock up into the quick of him.

Vlad laughed again. “You are so easy. I knew as soon as I see you that you take cock—that you wanted to take mine.”

It was all true. Todd took cock. And as soon as he’d seen Vlad, bare-chested, exercising the horse in the ring the previous day, he’d wanted to take Vlad’s cock. It was so easy for two men, one a top and the other a bottom, both active seekers, to see the need and desire in each other. It was amusing that Denise and the other women at the Globe couldn’t see that—that all of their signaling and flirting would not get through the barrier that Todd took—that he craved—fit men’s cocks.

And here, on the mountainside above the Blakes’ ranch and Colorado Springs, kneeling on all fours, under the control and command of the big, hunky, strong pairs figure skater, Vlad Starnovic, he was taking the man’s cock, hard and deep, and taking it and taking it.

And wanting it.

At breakfast that morning, just the two of them present, as everyone else was already up and was in the gym attached to Slava Dantic’s cottage, working out to stay in skating shape, Denise and Todd exchanged notes.

“No, I didn’t find out much of anything we can use last evening—other than background we already had,” Todd said. “You were being cozy with the physical trainer, Dantic. Did you learn anything from him?” Todd didn’t reveal just how cozy Denise had been with Dantic when he’d seen them in her bedroom. He was just glad that she had someone other them him jumping her bones.

“Not much. He was being tight lipped.”

Todd tried not to laugh. The man was being quite active with his lips the last time he saw him.

Denise continued. “He did drop one interesting tidbit, though. The Blakes don’t share a bedroom. I also asked him why Tracey Parsons had a bedroom in the family wing, when she’s just a coach, not connected to the pairs team now or in the past, but he clammed up on that. So, we’re on the right track, I think, there’s something definitely unusual in the pairing of this pairs team, and it might involve Tracey Parsons.”

It more likely involved Vlad Starnovic and Slava Dantic, Todd thought, although he wasn’t clear enough yet to say anything to Denise about it. Vlad had as much as acknowledged that he and Dantic had come from Russia as a pair. Vlad was a seeking male-to-male top. Todd could clearly see that—not least because Todd was a seeking male-to-male bottom. There had been unmistakable vibes between them, and Todd was sure that Vlad had signaled his interest. He’d also hinted that Slava, who he’d brought from Russia with him, was bi. So, there was no reason that just because Todd had seen Slava doing Denise that Vlad wasn’t doing Slava. Maybe the secret in this pairs team wasn’t either the Blakes or Tracey Parsons. Maybe it was Vlad’s sexuality.

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