Ethan could cope with most things, but if there was one thing that absolutely chafed him, it was missing out. Missing out on a party, missing out on the newest gear, missing out on the hottest clubs and the best shows. So Ethan had resolved to simply make sure that everything of any consequence happened around him–preferably at his place. The reputation of his parties, in particular, were already legendary, but if you were anyone, you made sure not to miss his birthday parties, especially if strange, kinky sex was your thing. For Ethan, that was one of the things he hated missing out on the most.
But this year, he found himself in a huff. He most certainly had missed out on something, and to make matters worse, people were here, at his party, flaunting it in his face. It was these masks. Now, Ethan had a thing for masks–particularly animal masks, and even more particularly sexy animal masks. But these…well, he’d honestly never quite seen anything like these before. He had seen four of them so far–a pig, a horse, a bull, and a pup, and usually with masks of this sort, you either had something thick and clunky, but which appeared lifelike, or you had something contoured to your face that lost the realism, but allowed a bit more…interaction. These though–someone somewhere had discovered how to bridge the gap, and never had Ethan been so envious in all his life.
Five feet away, the man in the pig mask was laughing. Laughing! With a mask on! The mouth opening like a real jaw, and he’d ever heard his snorting in it. Pigs were not particularly Ethan’s preference, but it didn’t matter. He wanted one, but he was too embarrassed at not knowing about them to dare go up to a stranger and ask where he’d gotten them.
And so he was miserable, mired in jealousy at his own party, desperately attempting to appear to be having as much fun as possible to try and cover up the fact that all he really wanted for his birthday was something no one had thought to give him–or so he’d thought. “Hello–you must be the birthday boy, is that right?” Ethan turned, and found an imposing fellow standing behind him, a couple inches taller than six feet, with broad shoulders, a hefty, hairy gut, wearing black jeans and a rubber vest, black, with a white stripe running down the back, mirroring his beard. He had on a small, black masquerade mask covering the upper half of his face, allowing a thick black beard to spill out below, with a bright white stripe running down the center. Ethan didn’t know him–but that wasn’t surprising. His parties usually attracted daisy chains of plus ones.
“Yes, uh, hi–that’s right,” Ethan said, the man shaking his hand, Ethan’s rather petite fingers engulfed in the stranger’s sizable palm.
“My name’s Wes. This is quite the party, I must say. However, I wanted to give you my gift before things got too…rowdy in here,” the man said, and handed Ethan a flat box, wrapped in black paper and a white bow. “I think you’ll enjoy it, given the sort of things I’ve heard about you.”
Ethan resisted the urge to roll his eyes, but couldn’t resist the gift, even if it was certain to be something he had at least three of in his collection. He popped open the lid, and gasped. Inside was a bright orange rubber mask. He picked it up and held it in his hands, examining it, the sharp pointed snout, black whiskers and pointy ears.
It was the same as the ones he had been envying all night. But for him–and it was a fox, his favorite. “How…how did you know?” he said, looking up at Wes, “I mean, thank you! I…to be honest, I’ve been seeing these all night, and wanting one for myself, but…what are they? Who makes them?”
“Oh, well, I do,” Wes said. “Custom made–I have quite the waiting list, actually, but I’ve heard that having you in one would do wonders for my exposure, so I thought, why not?” He looked around, “I…may have invited a few of my other clients around, as you have apparently seen. Nothing wrong with drumming up a little business, right?”
Ethan didn’t care. It was his. He found the hole in the bottom, made sure he had it facing forward, lest he make a fool of himself, and pulled it over his head. Wes helped him get it situated, feeling the rubber molding tight to his face, and he hurried over to a mirror hanging on the wall to see for himself, Wes following behind, smiling. It was…amazing. Ethan opened and closed his mouth a few times, watching the rubber follow his jaw movements perfectly. He could even wiggle the ears by wiggling his own ears and scalp. “It’s…wow, this is so generous, thank you so much,” he said. Wes came up behind him, and placed his rubber gloved hand on the back of Ethan’s head, rubbing the rubber there, and he felt the younger man shiver slightly.
“I chose well. It looks very good on you, I must say.”
Wes kept rubbing, slowly, and Ethan grinned, the rubber fox face in the mirror smiling with him. “You want to be a good little fox boy, don’t you?”
Ethan nodded. The man wasn’t necessarily his type, but the gift was generous, and the way he was rubbing his head…he did want to be a good little fox for him, actually.
“I did have one other small request. Now that I have the five of you together, I was wondering if we could get a group photo. You know, for publicity. Do you know where the six of us could get a little privacy for a while?”
“Y-Yes sir,” Ethan said, “We can all use my room. It should be big enough.”
“Good boy. Wait here while I round them up–it’ll just be a moment.”