Family Secrets

Written By: D’be-D’be

Pairing: Horatio and Eric

Delko was amazed on how Horatio Caine, His supervisor at CSI, and also his lover, had bounced back from his kidnapping ordeal with Dr. Ben Golden. In the first week he had a few nightmares but, with Delko’s help and support, he soon overcame them. Eric hoped if he was ever put in the same position as Caine had been, he would be as strong.

In the few months since the incident, the two men grew closer and closer. Their love-making became more frequent and their love grew deeper with every encounter. They still hadn’t moved in together but, if Eric played his cards right, he would convince Horatio that this would be the right move. He thought he’d discuss it after the party his sisters and he were holding for his parents’ thirty-fifth wedding anniversary. He couldn’t wait. All his parents’ friends would be there and all the relatives who had escaped the prison they called Cuba for freedom on US soil, would also be in attendance. Like all Cubans, Eric loved having family and friends around. He also enjoyed parties, especially authentic Cuban parties with real Cuban food and Cuban music.

He was even more excited because his extended family, his colleagues from CSI, especially Horatio, would be there to participate in all the fun. His parents had met his co-workers on various occasions and they knew how their son felt about his boss. Or they thought they knew. They didn’t suspect that their son was gay or that he and Caine were in a gay relationship. No, what they thought was Eric found the big brother he was always looking for. When Eric was growing up, he begged his parents to adopt an older boy so he would have a big brother. He loved his three older sisters, but he felt a boy needed a big brother to hang around with, to teach him things. His father tried to be a mentor but, he was so busy getting his own engineering company formed, he had little spare time. He blamed that as a factor when his son told him he was joining the Miami Police Department instead of coming into business with him. He hated the fact that his son was a cop, but his wife kept telling him that it was Eric’s life and he had no business meddling. He also wished his son would find a nice girl and get married so the Delko line would continue. He would hit the roof and disown his only son if he ever found out Eric was gay.

Delko found himself thinking about the party and his family as he pulled into his private parking space at Miami-Dade County Police Station. It was also here that the CSI labs were located. He was humming a Latin beat to himself as he walked off the elevator and entered the lab reception area. The first person he spotted was Ryan Wolfe. Wolfe had come on board after Tim Speedle had been gunned down in the line of duty. Eric didn’t like Wolfe much. He found him pushy and always trying to get on the good side of their supervisor. Several times Eric found Wolfe taking credit for work that he or Calleigh had completed, but Eric didn’t say anything to Horatio because anything he’d say would come off sounding like jealous pettiness. He knew Horatio was a very observant man and one of these days Wolfe would trip up and get caught. Delko couldn’t wait until that time came, but until then, he’d try to be pleasant to the newest member of the team. After all, that’s what Horatio expected of him.

“Hi, Ryan, how was your weekend?”

“Pretty good! I spent most of it on a boat, fishing with the father of this girl I’ve been dating for awhile.”

“Sounds like fun. Did you catch anything?”

“Nothing to brag about. Anyway, I’m glad I bumped into you ‘cause I was wondering about your parents party this weekend. What do I get them?”

“We don’t expect anyone to buy them anything but, if you’d like, I think my sister is setting up a wishing well were one can contribute a few bucks if they want to.”

“Sounds good to me. Oh, by the way, have you seen H this morning? I’ve been looking for him to pass on my notes on the Simmons murder case.”

“How can I have seen him, Ryan, when I’m just getting here myself? I don’t recall seeing his car in the parking lot though, so maybe he’s not here yet.”

“Who’s not here yet?”

The two men jumped at the sound of their supervisor’s voice. Horatio Caine would be an excellent cat burglar. He moved around without making a sound and, before you knew it, he was right there.

“Oh hi, H.” Wolfe gave his best suck-up smile. “I was just asking Eric if he saw you yet this morning. I have the Simmons notes here.”

“Good work, Ryan. That was very fast, thank you.”

“Ah, it was nothing, H. I knew you were in a hurry for them.”

Delko did his best to control himself from making a gagging noise, but hearing this suck-up made him sick. He knew however, if he did something inappropriate, he would find himself looking at the floor of Caine’s office while he lay over his lap, and Eric was doing his best to never have that happen again. As a matter of fact, Delko was being very good at following Caine’s rules. He had found himself doing lines a couple of times when he was late for an appointment. And, just last week, he was given corner time when he wouldn’t stop talking during a program Horatio was watching, but he never pushed the button far enough to receive a sound bare-ass spanking from Caine, not yet anyway. Time would tell when his luck would run out. If he only knew the clock was already ticking.

His mind came back to the present as he realized Horatio was asking him a question. “I’m sorry, H, what did you ask me?”

Giving him a small smile, Caine repeated, “How are you coming on the fingerprints we found at the scene?”

“I’m still working on them, boss. After all, there were a lot of people who came and went in that house.”

“I’m aware of that, Eric. Hang in there, buddy.”

“I can give him a hand, H, if you want me to,” Wolfe volunteered.

“I don’t need your help, Ryan. I’m quite capable of doing it myself.” Horatio’s left eyebrow went up at the tone in Delko’s voice, which caused the young Cuban to swallow the rest of his words that threatened to pour out.

“That’s very generous of you, Ryan, and I’m sure Eric would appreciate the help but I need you to go back to the scene with the crime photo’s and see if we missed something.”

“Whatever you want, H. I’ll go get my kit and I’m on my way.”

“Thank you. Eric, come on I’ll walk you to your station.”

The two men didn’t say too much on the way to where Eric did his work as both wrapped up in their own thoughts. When they entered the room and were away from prying ears, Caine turned to Delko and inquired, “What was that tone, Eric?”

“I’m sorry, H. I guess I felt a little put out of place, that’s all. I didn’t mean anything.”

“Okay, forget it. Oh by the way, your sister called after you left and wants you to call her ASAP.”

“You answered my phone, H?”

“Of course not! You know I wouldn’t do that. Not yet anyway. No, I heard her leave the message on your answering machine. Something about the restaurant wanting a down payment or something.”

“Oh, okay! Thanks, H. I’ll call her during lunch and by the way, about the party, I went out and bought you a new outfit.”

“You did what?”

“Ya! You don’t own too many casual clothes and, since this is a casual party, I went out and bought you a nice blue shirt and black denim pants I told the clerk the person I was purchasing the items for had red hair and piercing blue eyes. He recommended the royal blue shirt. He said it would really bring out those eyes, so I followed his advice. I can’t wait to see you in it.”

“And I suppose the pants are skin tight, if I know you.”

“They’re only tight where it counts,” Eric answered with a laugh in his voice.

“And what are you going to be wearing, sweetie?”

“Those white pants you love and that black silk shirt you bought me last month.”

“Perfect! Now let’s get to work, okay?”

“Anything you say, boss. Oh, in case I miss you, will you be coming over tonight?”

“Yup! I’ll see you around seven if that’s okay.”

“I’m counting the seconds.”

Caine left Eric to sort out the fingerprints and made his way to basement where Calleigh was testing the three guns that were found in the Simmons’ den.


Eric was on the phone when Horatio arrived that evening. The young man gestured to him that he make himself comfortable on the sofa. Horatio smiled to himself as he took in the conversation Eric was obviously having with one of his sisters.

“Look, that’s not a big deal. I’ll swing by the restaurant on my way to work tomorrow and give them the deposit.” He rolled his eyes in frustration as his sister continued to make a mountain out of a mole-hill.

“Look, Maria, everything is going to work out fine. The band is hired; the restaurant is preparing and cooking the roast pig just the way Papa likes it and the guests have all RSVP that they’re coming, so everything is going according to schedule.”

Delko, with mobile phone in hand walked over to the sofa, laid down and put his head in Horatio’s lap.

“Look, Sis, don’t worry! I’ll get Mamma and Papa to the restaurant. You and the other girls just take care of your end. Now, I gotta go! My boss is coming over to go over a few things, I’ll see you Saturday night. Bye…what…oh ya, I love you, too.”

Delko quickly hung up before his sister could start nagging him about something else. He placed the phone down on the floor and sat up to give Caine a kiss.

“They all treat me like such a baby and it really bugs me.”

“Eric, you’re the baby of the family so that’s to be expected and you know your family at CSI is sometimes guilty of the same thing. We just can’t help ourselves…you’re just so damn adorable.” Despite himself, Delco blushed deeply.

“Are you hungry, H?”

“Not for food. Come on, let’s go take a shower.” Eric took Horatio’s outstretched hand and allowed himself to be led to the bathroom.


The rest of the week went quickly. The team was working hard on the Simmons case and in between his CSI duties, Delko was helping his sisters with the party. Horatio gave him Friday evening off so he could help his sisters decorate and do the last minute running around. Saturday morning, Delko arrived at Caine’s condo with his new outfit and stayed long enough to ensure it would fit. He tried to get a look at Caine in the tight jeans but Caine insisted that he wait until this evening to get a glimpse.

Delko spent the rest of the day putting up with his three sisters ordering him around and doing the last minute running around. Finally it was time for Eric to run back to his place for a quick shower and change before going to Caine’s. Horatio let Eric in then did a model’s spin to allow Delko to take in the full view of him in his tight pants and shirt. He was a sight to behold and Eric tried to stop himself from looking down to the crouch area. ‘Yes sir,’ he thought to himself, ‘that clerk really knew what he was talking about.’ The pants really showed off one of his Top’s best assets, and the royal blue shirt really brought out his gorgeous eyes.

“Oh H, your absolutely scrumptious! I’m sure glad we’re going to a straight party tonight because, if we weren’t, I’d have to keep a close eye on you to ensure your safety.”

Despite himself, Horatio found his face turning a little red. He wasn’t used to receiving these types of complements. Speedle was never one to comment on such things.

“You look damn good and sexy too, sweetie.”

They kissed, then Caine grabbed his cell phone and weapon because a member of the MDPD could not go anywhere without his weapon. The whole team was signed off for the night shift, even though one never knew what would happen in Miami.

“Where is this party again, Eric?”

“It’s being held at the La Covacha. There’s no place like it that captures the Havana flavor like they do. They prepare authentic Cuban food and the band plays nothing but Cuban style music. You’ll love it.”

“How are your parents getting there?”

“Oh, I was very clever. I told them we were holding a surprise birthday party for you and that you would be honored if they attended. They like you a lot.”

“You’re a little sneak, but what ever works. Eric, about this party tonight, I want you to promise me that you won’t overdo the partaking of alcohol, those Cuban drinks can be quite potent.”

“I’ll do my best and by the way, H, when we’re around my father, don’t be surprised if I call you by your full name or maybe ‘sir’. My father is a strong believer in respecting one’s superiors and elders and he won’t tolerate me disrespecting your position.”

“What would he do if you did disrespect me; spank you?” Caine made the last statement as a joke but from the look in his Brat’s eyes, he knew he had hit close to home.

“Eric, were you disciplined as a boy by your dad?”

“I sure was, and he…he still does from time to time.”

“What?” Caine was taken aback by that admission. “I didn’t know that. Why didn’t you tell me?”

“I was….I’m embarrassed to let everyone know that a twenty-eight year old man still gets spanked by his daddy.”

“Is that why you’re being extra careful not to break our rules?”

Delko remained silent for a moment while he tried to form in his mind the proper way to explain to his Top, the difference he felt between the two situations.

“H, I hope I say this right. The one time you spanked me, was to help me deal with a situation and an unwanted emotion, and if I ever break a rule, you will follow through for the same reason. My father spanks me because he thinks I disobeyed or disrespected him. He spanks out of anger, you spank out of love. Don’t get me wrong. I know my father loves me, but he expects so much more out of me than he does from my sisters. He is very old fashion and he thinks girls only have a certain purpose in life; to take care of the men and have babies. Men, on the other hand, have a more important role in society. You should have seen the spanking he gave me when I told him I was joining the police force. He used his belt and I couldn’t sit comfortably for three days. It was only after he met you that he understood my reason for joining. He knew I had met the big brother I had always wanted, but he’s warned me time and time again to never show disrespect to you or I would feel his full wrath.”

“Have you ever told him to stop spanking you?”

“Never, he’s my father! And to answer your question about me trying to do my best not to break the rules, I do that because I love you and I don’t want you angry at me.”

“Eric, you said it yourself that I would never spank you out of anger, but only out of necessity. It will be done to help you, not to harm you, do you understand?”

Delko was glad they were getting to the restaurant, because it was getting hard for him to see with the tears welling up in his eyes. He just nodded ‘yes’ as he pulled into the parking lot in the back of the restaurant. Caine took a hold of his hand and gave it an ‘I love you squeeze’. Delko squeezed back. It was all they could do in public.

They were met in the lobby of the restaurant by the rest of the CSI team and Eric’s three sisters and their families. Calleigh came stag because, in her words, you never know whom you’ll meet at one of these parties. Wolfe had his current girlfriend, while Alexx was accompanied by her husband. After greetings were completed they all walked into the main room. The La Covacha was a huge barn of a building, with big ceiling fans and a huge dance floor, It was decorated like Havana in the 50’s before Castro ruined it all. It had a huge bar that made up one of the walls and a head table was set up on the opposite wall for the guests of honor and family when the feast began.

Nervously, Delko looked at his watch. It was eight pm and his parents would be arriving at any time, so along with Calleigh to keep the illusion alive that it was a party for their boss, they went out in the lobby to await the arrival of the anniversary couple.

Delko’s parents were pleasantly surprised to learn that the party was in their honor. They entered the main dining room to a standing ovation and circled the room to greet everyone. When they reached Horatio, Pavel Delko took a hold of his son’s boss’ hand.

“Well, Lieutenant, were you part of this conspiracy?”

“In name only, sir.”

Delko’s mother reached up and gave Caine a tiny kiss on the cheek.

“Thank you for helping my son plan this party, Senior Caine.”

“I had little to do with it, Mrs. Delko, I only gave permission for the deception. Your son and his sisters deserve all the credit.”

“You are very kind to say so. My baby speaks very highly of you.”

Eric blushed at the endearing words of his mother and lowered his eyes to the floor. Caine, seeing his Brat’s embarrassment, couldn’t help but be amused and he couldn’t help himself from replying, “I think very highly about your baby as well.”

Despite Eric trying to act annoyed, Caine could tell the other man was pleased by his answer.

Delko led his parents to the head table and, after a few speeches, the food was served. Horatio was concerned on how many trips Eric was making to the bar for a drink and at one point cut him off at the pass.

“Eric, this is your fourth trip to the bar. I think you’ve had enough!”

“Oh, come on, H. Lighten up! I’m in control; honest I am. This is a party…Cuban style… so relax and enjoy yourself.

Horatio just shook his head but allowed Delko to pass. He watched his young Brat order another drink then watched as he walked over to the band stand to request a song.

“Ladies and gentlemen,” Delko began to speak. “Thirty-five years ago a young Russian engineer by the name of Pavel Delekorsky was sent to Cuba. There he met a Cuban beauty who went by the name of Clorinda. They quickly fell in love and married. Over the next three years, they had three beautiful daughters. But things were really bad in Cuba, so when Clorida discovered she was pregnant again, they decided to go for a freedom flight. With his wife carrying their fourth child and with their three beautiful girls, they risked their lives for freedom. I was that baby inside my mother and I am forever grateful that they took that brave journey which allowed me to be born here. It is quite obvious to my sisters and I that this couple has never lost their love for one another and, as each year passes, their love grows stronger. My parents still have strong feelings and pride in their heritage, which they passed on to their children. We were raised in the Cuban tradition but our father never let us forget we are also part Russian. My sisters and I remember a song he used to sing to my mother in times of stress and worry. It became their song, and we used to sneak down and watch them dance to it, when they thought we were all asleep. Now I know this party has a Cuban theme but for the first dance, I asked the band to learn this Russian melody and they gladly agreed to do so. Mamma and Papa, please take your place on the dance floor for the official first dance, and as you hold each other close, remaining as deeply in love as you were on the first time you danced to this tune, remember your family loves you very much. Thank you.”

Everyone was touched by Delko’s words, and it was evident his parents were very proud of their baby as they made their way to the dance floor. Caine swallowed the lump in his throat as he began to listen to the old Russian waltz the band was playing. As his Brat approached him, he wished he could take him in arms and lead him to the dance floor to show the world how much he loved this young man but, instead, he settled for a hug.

“Eric, that was beautiful and very touching, I didn’t know you were going to make that speech.”

Always looking for Horatio’s approval, Delko asked, “Did is sound okay, H? It wasn’t to sappy or anything, was it?”

“No, Eric, it was perfect. Is that why you needed all those drinks….to give you the courage to get up there in front of everyone?”

“Ya, sort of. But it’s a party and I also want to enjoy myself.” They stopped speaking as the music stopped and they saw the Delkos leave the floor and walk towards them.

“Oh, Eric, you make me so proud. That was beautiful, gracias!” exclaimed Eric’s mother.

Pavel Delko, for his part, shook his son’s hand. Caine couldn’t help but notice a little look of disappointment in the young Delko’s eyes. It was obvious he was hoping for a hug or some sign of affection from his dad, but none was forthcoming.

Delko excused himself and went back to the bar, leaving Caine alone with his parents. They made small talk for a few minutes then Caine excused himself and asked Calleigh to dance. She accepted graciously and the two made their way to the dance floor. Delko watched his Top swing his colleague across the huge dance floor in time to a Latin beat. Damn he looked good! Every time he turned, those tight pants pulled across his crotch, giving Delco a great view. Delko found himself becoming aroused and with the loss of his inhibitions, brought on by the large amount of alcohol in his system, Delko found himself moving across the dance floor as a Salsa tune began to play. He tapped Calleigh on the shoulder in a sign he was cutting in and without loosing a beat, he began to bump and grind his way towards Horatio. He put his arms around Horatio’s neck and pulled him close so their pelvic bones touched. He then began to rotate his hips in a very suggestive manner, which caused everyone on the floor and in the room to stop and take in the sight of these two men dancing this very sensuous dance.

Caine for his part was doing nothing to encourage Delko from continuing whatever he was trying to accomplish. As a matter of fact, he was doing his best to pull away, but Delko continued to hold him more tightly with every step and grind. Delko was so wrapped up in what he was doing he didn’t see his father walking across the dance floor until his father had reached the two men. In a quick, rough manner, the older Delko pulled his son away from his superior and began to yell at him in Russian. Suddenly Delko found himself being dragged off the dance floor towards the washroom, with Caine close behind.

When they reached the washroom and after assuring himself that it was empty, the elder man continued to yell at his son in Russian, all the while undoing his belt and removing it from the pant loops. As Caine enter the washroom he heard the snap of the belt as Delko’s father bent the leather belt in two and give it a tug. He also witnessed the look of fear in his Brat’s eyes.

“Please, Papa. I’m sorry! Please don’t spank me here where everyone will be able to hear. Please don’t! I’m sorry!”

“Eric, you deserve this spanking because you not only embarrassed your mother and I with your lured behavior but, most importantly, you embarrassed your superior, the man you consider a mentor. Is this how you show him respect in front of family and friends by making on you want to bed him? I will not tolerate this type of behavior, so remove your pants and shorts right now, young man, and prepare to be punished!”

Eric was crying now but he knew he had no choice so he began doing as he was ordered. He stopped however when he heard the soothing voice of his Top.

“Mr. Delko, I am the last person to ever interfere in someone else’ business, but I would like to ask your permission to take over Eric’s discipline. After all, I am the one who he embarrassed out there and furthermore, sir, I feel this role has now fallen to me as Eric’s boss. I understand before he joined CSI, Eric lived under your rules of discipline and so he should have, but now he is under my rule and it is only right that I take over the task of making him toe the line, sort to speak. Do you agree?”

The senior Delko thought about this for a moment before he replied. Then handing the belt to Horatio, he stated, “Yes, I believe the time has come that I stop spanking my son and give him over to someone else, and who better than you, his boss. By all means, please teach this little brat a lesson.”

Eric couldn’t believe his ears. Horatio hadn’t come in here to rescue him. It was the exact opposite; he was going to give him his first bare-ass spanking and in front of his father no less. That thought made Delco’s legs turn to rubber.

“I won’t be using the belt, sir. I don’t believe in that, so I will give Eric his spanking, using my hand.” Turning to Eric, Caine continued, “Okay, Eric, lower your pants and shorts then come over here and lay across my lap.”

“But Horatio, sir, I…. I…please don’t!”

“Begging is just delaying the obvious. You know you’re going to receive this spanking sooner or later, so why don’t you surrender to it.”

With silent tears rolling down his face, Delko dropped his pants and shorts and hobbled over to Caine, who had made himself comfortable on the counter.

“Eric, do you know why I’m going to spank you?”


“Come on…I think you do. Think!”

“I….I…uh …disobeyed you by drinking too much which led to my actions of disrespect.”

“That’s right! It’s not because I’m angry with you. It’s just that you broke one of the rules. Do you understand?”

“Yes, Sir!”

Delko’s father interrupted the CSI supervisor before he could begin the discipline.

“You gave Eric rules to follow? I’m surprised!”

Being very careful with how he answered in order not to give their lifestyle away, Caine choose his words cautiously. “When Eric joined my team, it was quite obvious he needed direction. I established a few ground rules for him to follow which are very close to yours; respect, honor and honesty.”

“Have you ever had to spank him before?”

Not wanting to lie to this man, Caine answered in an indirect way, “No, not like this.” He meant never on bare skin, because the one time he did spank Eric, it was through his jeans. His minor deception worked, because the elder man took it as Delko having never been spanked by his superior.

“Now, sir, if you’re done with your questions, may I get on with the task at hand?” Not waiting for a reply, Caine landed the first blow to his Brat’s bare behind. Delko jumped as the first slap felt like a hot iron on his bare skin. It only got worse, as his Top moved from one cheek to another until both turned from pink to red.

“OWWWW, Horatio! Lo Siento! I’m sorry! OWWW …Por favor para, senior. Please stop, sir!”

After another ten slaps which made fifty in all, Caine finally stopped, then lifting his Brat off his lap and getting off the counter, he took the young man into his arms and held him close as the tears came in earnest.

“Ssssh, Eric, it’s okay. It’s all over now! Hush now….easy…easy….calm down now,” Horatio spoke in a soothing tone while holding his Brat close and rubbing his back in a comforting and loving way.

Delko’s father couldn’t believe how gentle Caine was being with his son. After all, whenever he had disciplined him, he had left him alone with his pain and his thoughts without even a hug of forgiveness, and here was this man, holding Eric with such love and tenderness, it made him finally realize why Eric considered this man as a big brother.

Eric, after a few more sniffles, reluctantly pulled away from his Top. He looked over at his father and once again with head down, apologized for his actions.

“Fine, now pull your pants back up and let’s get back to the party!” Without another word Eric watched his father exit the room, leaving Eric alone with his Top.

Seeing that his Brat was doing his best to regain some control, Caine squatted down, took Delko’s shorts and pants in his hands and slowly moved them up his legs and over his hips. He heard the quick sound of a hiss as the material touched the tender skin.

“I’m sorry, baby. Does it hurt much?”

“Not as much as it would have if you had used that damn belt. Thank you for that, H.”

“I’ll never use anything like that on you, baby. Never!”

As Caine stood back up, he noticed a trickle of blood coming from Eric’s left nostril. He moved into the stall to retrieve some toilet paper to wipe his nose.

“Hey, sugar, what’s with the nose bleed?” a concerned Caine asked.

“I…uh….I thought you knew. I get nose bleeds when I’m under stress and getting your bare butt smacked at your parents’ anniversary party would be considered a high stress situation, don’t you think?”

“I would say. Do you feel like coming back to the party or do you want to go home?”

“I want to go home but I better stay. H, promise me you’ll stay close, okay?”

“As close as white on rice, kiddo.”

“God I love you, H. I’ve never felt such deep love for anyone before and it kind of scares me.”

“Don’t be scared, kiddo. Just enjoy it.” With those words Horatio gave his Brat a deep kiss, then after assuring himself that there was no dried blood on Delko’s face, he led the way out of the bathroom.

“One final piece of advice, Eric,” Caine offered. “When you come out of this bathroom, hold your head up high. You have nothing to be ashamed of. Do you understand?”

“Yes, Sir.”

As a matter of fact, everyone was having such a great time and the music was so loud, no one had any idea of what had transpired in the bathroom. Eric’s sister and mother had a good idea and Calleigh and Alexx suspected something was up, but they never let on, so it was party central as usual.

The rest of the evening when fairly smoothly, Eric dance a few slow dances with a couple of girls his father pushed on him, but he didn’t dare do any fast ones, because the cotton of his shorts was still irritating his sore butt

Horatio danced a few dances of his own, one being with Eric’s mother. It gave the woman an opportunity to speak to her son’s boss

“My husband told me what transpired in the washroom. I can’t thank you enough from sparing my son the pain of the belt. Pavel can be so cruel at times and he is very hard on his son. I am very grateful that Eric has you in his life as a boss, friend, big brother among other things.”

“Other things, Mrs. Delko. What do you mean by that?”

“Exactly what you think I mean. Don’t worry, Horatio, your secret is safe with me. I love my son too much to ever tell his father the real truth about your relationship with my son.”

“How did you know? Did Eric tell you?”

“Well, not intentionally. You see, about a month ago Eric came down with a bad cold.”

“Yes, I remember that.”

“He came over to spend the night because he hates being by himself when he’s sick and I think you were out of town on a follow up to a case. Anyway, he stayed the night with me and spent the night in his old room. Well, when I went in to check on him, he had a very high fever and was talking in his sleep. He kept calling out your name and then he kept repeating that he loved it when you made love to him, but he didn’t use that terminology if you know what I mean.”

With a little chuckle, Horatio told her he understood exactly what Eric had been saying.

She also laughed as she continued her story. “So I stayed with him and held his hand and listened to his ramblings and when the fever broke, I let him know his secret. He was so frightened and worried about his dad. I reassured him as well that his father would never know the real truth. I told him how pleased I was that he found someone like you to share his life with, but I also warned him to be careful not to show you to much affection in front of his father. I thought he blew it this evening, but I think we can blame his actions on the alcohol.”

“Yes, Mrs. Delko, don’t concern yourself. Your husband never suspected the real reason Eric was dancing with me and I explained the reason why I took over the discipline, so I think a crisis has been diverted.”

“I told Eric he would still have to go out with females from time to time to keep his father happy.”

“I never thought of that but I’ll discuss it with him. Don’t worry.”

“Oh, Horatio, you are simply wonderful and, if I do say so myself, my son has excellent taste. If things were different, I may have made a play for you myself.”

As the music stopped, the two adults shared a laugh and a kiss on each other’s cheeks.

While Horatio was dancing with his mother, Delko led his blond colleague unto the dance floor. They slipped into each other’s arms with ease, and anyone watching them would get the impression that they could make a lovely couple.

“Your father is watching us like a hawk, Eric, and several times he asked me how I feel about you.”

“What did you tell him?”

“The truth. I think you are a sweet, sensitive man, who is excellent at his work and who is also a close and dear friend, but I also assured him that was as far as my feelings went. I told him I consider you like a kid brother, nothing else, no romantic feelings at all.”

“Ah, Calleigh, I’m hurt. I thought you fantasized about me all the time,” Delko let out a small chuckle.

“Come on, Eric, let’s be honest with each other. We both know who you fantasize about.”

“What….what are you talking about?”

“I see the way you and Horatio look at each other. I’ve also known for along time that H is gay, although he tried to put up a good front. It became noticeable to me over the past couple of months as you’ve both come in to work at the same time. Eric, that never happened before. As a matter of fact, you were hardly ever on time for work in your life, so it became obvious to me that someone was making sure you were getting up on time and getting to work.”

“Did you discuss your observations with Horatio?”

“Not yet! Why do you think I should?”

“Holy shit, Calleigh, no! Let me talk to him first.”

“Eric, let me ask you a question. Are you ashamed about your relationship with Horartio? Would it be so awful if everyone at work knew?”

“Oh God, Calleigh, I would love to shout it from the roof top about H and I, but you know him, he’s such a private individual. I’m not sure he would want you guys to know even if you did suspect. By the way, do Alexx and Ryan suspect anything?”

“I think so, but we never discussed it.”

“I better talk to H when we get home. Calleigh, thank you for never voicing your suspicions. I tried so hard not to let my feeling show but I guess I wasn’t too successful. I love him so much and I’d do anything to spare him any pain or humiliation.”

“Talk to him, Eric. You may be in for pleasant surprise.”

“Calleigh, did you know about H and Speed?”

“Speed told me almost immediately after their relationship started, although he did a better job hiding his feeling at work than you’re doing.”

“I better talk to H and be ready to face the music.”

Finally the party was over and everyone went their separate ways. Since Eric had a few drinks, Horatio drove them home. Eric sat as close to his Top as he could but said little to him. As a matter of fact, he didn’t speak at all. He was trying to work in his mind the conversation he was about to have with his Top. He placed his head on Horatio’s shoulder and closed his eyes deep in thought. Caine for his part allowed his Brat time with his own thoughts. After all, it was one hell of a night for the kid.

When they got home, Caine made Eric get in his pajamas then he led him to the sofa for some cuddle time before bed. Eric, with his arms around Horatio’s waist, took a deep breath then began to speak.

“H, I had a very interesting conversation with Calleigh this evening. She told me she knew you were gay and she also told me that her and the rest of the team suspect that you and I have become a couple. She said it became obvious by the way I kept looking at you and how lately I always came to work on time. I’m sorry, I guess I blew it.” He waited with bated breath, expecting his Top to explode with anger at this revelation. He wasn’t prepared for his Top’s reply.

“Thank God, I was getting so tired of living a lie. Look, sweetie, I love you. I’ve wanted to tell everyone about us for awhile now, but I wasn’t sure if you were ready to come out of the closet, sort to speak. If you agree, I think we should have a meeting with our working family and let the secret out. What do you say?”

“Will we let them know it is a discipline relationship as well?”

“No, sweetie, that part of our lives should remain private because that is a very personal thing, don’t you agree?”

“Oh God, H, do I ever, but will they agree to keep the news to themselves? I mean I’d die if my family found out.”

“Eric, your mother already knows. She told me this evening and I’m sure your sisters suspect, but you don’t have to worry about your dad. Your mom and I agreed we would do everything in our power to prevent him from ever finding out. We even discussed the possibility of you dating a girl from time to time to keep your father in the dark.”

“I don’t know about that, H?”

“Well, we don’t have to worry about that right now, so what do you say we have a staff meeting tomorrow morning and share our news that we are officially a couple. Then you can give your landlord notice that you are moving out.”

“Are you asking me what I think you’re asking me?”

“If you mean I’m asking you to move in with me…yes…that’s what I’m asking.”

“Oh. H!” Delko shouted with sheer joy as he jumped into his Top’s lap and began placing kisses all over his face.

“I take that to mean ‘yes’.”

Eric began to cry as a feeling of pure satisfaction and happiness spread over him, then a thought struck him and he sat up to look Horatio in the eyes.

“How can we explain moving in together to my father? I mean, it’s not that he visits me that often but he does from time to time drop in if he’s in the neighborhood.”

“Isn’t your building going co-op?”

“Yes, in four months and we all received letters asking us if we were going to buy our place or move out.”

“Well there you go, sweetie. Tell your dad your place isn’t worth what they’re asking for it. Then tell him I offered you my spare room until you made up your mind what you next move was going to be.”

“Damn, H, you think of everything. I know that will work.”

“Great! Now that that’s solved, let’s get to bed. We have a big day ahead of us.”

Horatio slept like a baby, but Delko kept waking up in a cold sweat at the prospect of the staff meeting. He was already up, showered and dressed when the alarm went off, which shocked Caine. His Brat was definitely not a morning person, so to have him up and ready at this time of the morning was a first.

“You’re up early, sweetie.”

“I’m so nervous about the meeting I couldn’t sleep, so I gave up the battle of trying to sleep and decided to get up.”

“Everything will be alright, sweetie. You’ll see. Now go make the coffee while I shower and get ready.”

Eric was shaking like a leaf as the CSI team gathered in Caine’s upstairs office. Calleigh gave his arm a reassuring squeeze of support, while Alexx gave him a tiny wink. Wolfe didn’t say much, not understanding the need for a staff meeting since they just had one last week. He was also surprised that Frank Tripp and Yelina Salas were included in this meeting. When everyone was seated and comfortable, Caine stood and faced his team. “I don’t know if you’re aware of this or not, but I consider each one of you here a member of my family and, since I don’t believe in keeping secrets in families, I think it’s about time I let you know what is going on in my life. I’m aware that some of you have already suspected what I’m about to confess to but it is only right that I verbalize it. Eric and I have been carrying on a gay relationship for a few months now and we are about to move in together. Now if some of you have a hard time dealing with that, I want to know now. Not that your feelings are going to alter anything. Eric and I just want to know where we stand with everyone.”

The team took turns looking at Delko then back to Caine, then to each other. It was Calleigh who broke the silence. “Well Horatio, I can only speak for myself, but I want you both to know I wish you nothing but happiness and joy. I’m so very pleased for you both” With that she got up and gave the two men a huge hug. She was followed by both Alexx and Salas. It took a couple of minutes for Frank Tripp to react, then a huge grin broke out on his usually stone-like face.

“Well I’ll be damned! I never suspected a thing, Horatio. You did a great job hiding the truth, but you know me, I believe in live and let live and if living with that Cuban cutie makes your life complete, I’m happy for you.” With those words he reached out his hand to them both. Wolfe put a smile on his face and echoed everyone’s sentiments, but Delko had a feeling it wasn’t sincere. He may have a problem with this new member. Time would tell but right now, he didn’t give a damn about what Wolfe thought. Everyone else was happy and excited for them. His working family finally knows his secret and as far as his own family is concerned he’d have to keep the secret a little while longer, but who knows what tomorrow will bring. After a few more comments and hugs, the meeting broke up leaving Eric and Horatio alone. For the first time in public they embraced and gave each other a deep and passionate kiss. It was wonderful and uplifting. Eric couldn’t wait until tonight where the two could really celebrate their coming out and their future together. As Caine took some paper work out of his in-basket, Eric picked up the phone to call his landlord.

Their new life was about to begin.

The End

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