St Stephen's Cathedral and the stained glass windows: True stuff, history taken from 'The Mayne Inheritance' by Rosamond Siemon.


It's Ian that's fucking me, but it's Matthew I'm thinking of. As I approach orgasm I shut my eyes, mentally replacing the soft, white hand that grips my cock with a tanned, tattooed, muscular one.

His climax shatters the fantasy, his cries too high-pitched and self-important to belong to someone like Matthew. Matthew, I imagine, wouldn't sound so artificial. He wouldn't emit anything as romantic as a cry or moan or even a groan; but I could imagine him, grunting and struggling to breathe, holding on tightly to his lover and falling, sweaty and exhausted in post-orgasmic satisfaction. Or not. It plagues me, trying to imagine what he's like when he fucks; would he be rough? Would he wait for his partner to orgasm before losing control, or would he patiently, wait in a martyrely manner? Afterwards, would he be affectionate?

Lust satisified, Ian efficiently shifts our position, his dick stimulating my prostate, one hand masturbating me until my own needs shift my thoughts of Matthew and I climax. I'm still panting as he withdraws, heading to the bathroom without so much as a kiss or a 'thank-you'. I used to have this fuck-buddy, Jacob, who would always say 'thank-you' and although I found it amusing at the time, I miss such small signs of respect. With Ian, I feel like nothing, because with Ian, I'm not anything.

My doona provides some childish sort of comfort, as I draw it over my naked, exhausted body, appreciating it's warmth. It worries me that two weeks ago I was resigned to my relationship with Ian whereas now I'm becoming obssessed with a man I've only known for seven days. I do ponder what on earth Matthew would say if he realised his rather ugly little housemate had the hots for him.

'Alexander,' Ian snarls, stalking back into the room. 'What the fuck is that on your housemate's back?'

'The swastika?' I offer meekly.

'Yes the goddamn motherfucking swastika,' Ian retorts. 'God it's just one stupid thing after another with you, isn't it?'

I gesture for him to be quiet, not needing Matthew to overhear this. I really wanted the two to start off on the right foot, and I deeply suspect hearing Ian ranting and raving over his swastika tattoo won't be conducive to a good relationship.

'He's not into that anymore,' I reply in a hushed tone. 'How did you see it?'

Ian glares at me as he pulls on his suit. 'He was in the bathroom. Naked. Shaving. Didn't even bother locking the door. What charming, respectful creatures you persist in associating yourself with.'

I could argue that walking in without knocking and being angry that somebody was already in the bathroom, shaving, is a greater show of disrespect. Especially when such an intrusion is immediately followed by a rather vocal complaint about a tattoo whose origins and history Ian knows nothing of.

'Well, I'll go and see if he's still there,' I suggest irritably, pulling on a pair of jeans and heading to the bathroom.

Matthew's walking out as I'm walking in, a white towel wrapped tightly around his waist and his dirty clothes hanging from one hand. 'Hot' doesn't do justice to him; the guy is totally utterly yum. I'd like to say that I've seen enough naked males in my life to be able to greet him with some sort of decorum, but alas this is hardly the case. I flush red and mumble an apology under my breath. Matthew surprises me by flushing redder and mumbling something in response.

'So, um, sorry,' he finishes uncomfortably. 'I'll lock the door in the future.'

'Okay,' I agree quickly.

We stand there like complete idiots.

'I'll go,' I offer.

'Good,' he agrees. 'I mean, not 'good' but...'

'...yeah,' I grin, returning to my bedroom.

My encounter with Matthew was just so unexpected and he was so...shy and cute...that I'm in a good mood and my usual sarcasm is foregone as I tell Ian the bathroom's his.

'Don't fret,' he snorts condescendingly. 'I can have a shower at home.'

I sigh as he leaves, pulling off my jeans and settling myself under the covers, preparing to sleep. It's Friday night and one would expect I'd have some sort of plans, but no; stupid me gave up a night clubbing with my friends to sexually satisfy an arrogant, annoying piece of shit. My good mood dissipitates as I recall the various slights and the snubs I've suffered at the hands of my fuck buddy.

There's only one thing for it; the dodgy Friday night SBS documentary. With half an hour to go before the fun starts, I have a shower and head downstairs, dressed in a holey old shirt and boxer shorts I've owned since I was sixteen. I was going for comfort, not style, but realise this might not have been the best idea when I see Matthew, sitting on the couch watching the last of the World News.

He glances in my direction and shrugs apologetically. 'Sorry, I totally forgot. Back home we always used to knock before entering.'

'Which is what Ian should have done,' I reply lightly. 'Are you planning on watching Soccer before Sex?'

'I was,' he grins, his earlier discomfort gone. 'Unless you had a better idea?'

'Nope,' I grin back. 'This is about as good as it gets.'

Good old SBS, it truly is Australia's gift to anyone whose sexual desires lean towards the non-mainstream. When I was twelve my parents made the rather stupid mistake of buying me a thirty-four centimetre television. I spent the next year staying up late, observing men having sex with each other, observing naked men strut around and, oh, observing naked men in general whilst pulling on myself. It's incredibly sad in hindsight, but hormones hit with utterly no mercy and who was I to pass up an opportunity to check out hot guys?

Tonight's documentary goes beyond all norms and exceeds even the 'I've heard of it' realms, delivering a show on feeders; men who get off on making fat women fatter. Truly, even my relationship with Ian seems perfectly normal by the end, although I have no urge to ever eat again, lest I end up three hundred kilos and with a man who thinks it's sexy.

'I was hungry,' Matthew laughs as the program draws to a close. 'You wanna change the channel so I can get my appetite back?'

'Absolutely.'

As we start watching fast food commercials in an attempt to kick-start our appetites, Matthew calls my name. I turn to him expectantly.

'Is it hard to drive around in the CBD?' he asks.

I consider the question. From an outsiders's perspective, the answer is probably 'hell yes'. I give Matthew his answer and inquire why he wants to know.

'St Stephen's Cathedral,' he replies with a shrug. 'They have these stained glass windows there that I wanted to check out.'

Driving into the city on a Saturday, for the sole purpose of looking at stained glass windows, is not something I'd expect Matthew to find enjoyable. Hell, who on earth wants to go to a church to look at stained glass?

'I'll take you if you want,' I offer timidly. 'I know where the Cathedral is.'

'Really?' Matthew asks, sounding surprised. 'I don't want to bore you.'

'Oh you won't,' I lie. 'I have an interest in history.'

Of course I have an interest in history. If Matthew has an interest in history, then God help me, I'm going to feign interest too.

It's truly sad how much I like this guy.


We head off the next morning at around ten am, driving to the city in my little VW Bug. Matthew seems to find it funny that I own such a car and when I ask why he's amused, he retorts with 'it's a typical guppie car'. I refrain from commenting on his mode of transport, despite the numerous stereotypes that exist about men in their early twenties, Holdens and utes.

St Stephen's Cathedral is located across the general post office and parking is nearby, so the walk isn't too long. Matthew seems disproportionately excited when he catches sight of the church, speeding up and hunting down the stained glass panels. I feel incredibly awkward walking into a church just to check out some glass and steel, moreso because I'm not a religious person. I'm more than relieved that Matthew seems more interested in just viewing the windows and leaving before anyone speaks to us. Not that there's many people around, just a few people sitting in the pews.

We sit on the grass outside Queensland Transport, smoking, Matthew still staring at the church. Admittedly it is a pretty impressive structure and I regret not paying more attention to it previously.

'Why did you want to see the stained glass?' I inquire, curious. 'You could have seen stained glass anywhere.'

'It's just something I learnt,' Matthew explains easily. 'Several of the panels were donated by the Mayne family.'

'Who are?'

'Were,' Matthew corrects. 'They're all dead. It starts in 1848. This guy, Cox, was killed and mutilated at Kangaroo Point. Bits of his body were strewn everywhere and, coppers being coppers, they pulled in a group of blokes who'd been around at the time and tried to see who was guilty. They end up getting this guy Fyfe and decided he was the most likely suspect. The evidence they gave was that this guy freaked out when he was shown Cox's head and that made him guilty. Also, there were rumours that he'd burnt clothing, but his grate was cold and it was proven he had no spare clothes because they were all with the washerwoman. However, there's a little blood on his sheets and the cops are determined to get someone, so Fyfe gets sent down to Sydney for trial. He's found guilty and hanged.

The thing being, Fyfe didn't kill Cox; they were lovers. But no one admits to homosexuality, because you're going to get anything up to 14 years jail with hard labour. Seven years was more common, but hey, he wasn't guilty of the murder and what's the point in trying to explain a relationship that isn't sanctioned?'

'I'd take seven years jail over death,' I point out, shuddering at the thought of being hung.

'I'd take neither if I could help it,' Matthew argues dryly. 'But moving on, the actual murderer was Patrick Mayne. He confessed on his deathbed, but was overheard. See, the thing is, Patrick Mayne was around on the night of the murder, but he was the one person who wasn't arrested. It's kind of odd, really, considering he also stole a stack of money from Cox, and then used it a year later to buy a butcher's store he couldn't have ever have afforded without some outside source of income. There was all this really dodgy stuff going on, but he somehow escaped detection. Patrick went on to make a stack of money using the money he stole when he murdered Cox and when everyone found out how he got his original break, the gossip spread like wildfire. He left behind a wife - who donated one of the windows in his memory and as recompense for his sins - and five children. The children remained in Brisbane, none ever married, and in 1940, the last of the children died. The last child, James, left most of his money to the University of Queensland and they used the money to purchase the land at St Lucia.'

'Really? That's kind of interesting.'

'I think so,' Matthew agrees, grinning and flushing slightly. 'Sorry for the lecture. I find it fascinating and thought I might try and find all the landmarks and stuff that relate to the case.'

I glance over at the church, remembering the stained glass panels. I'm starting to wish I'd got a better look. 'Can I come with you?'

Matthew looks at me like I'm mad. 'Hell yeah. But I'll probably bore the shit out of you.'

'Take my word for it, you could never bore me,' I assure him.

And after today, I know I speak with total honesty.