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    • CMiller

      NEWS: Discord Server & Clubs (aka Groups) are back!   08/19/17

      Hello everyone I'm back with a couple big updates! Firstly we now have a Discord server, this is a real-time chat messaging client you can run on your phone, desktop, or anywhere. It's a pretty powerful desktop application that enables people to chat together, and with multiple channels you can find people interested in what you're interested in. If you don't already have a Discord account it's pretty easy to get one, just click the following invite link to get started: https://discord.gg/Ahzu9jC Secondly I'm proud to announce the return of Groups, it's been renamed to Clubs and is now available here: https://muscle-growth.org/clubs/. This system is entirely user generated and allows users to create groups of their own based on any subject they want. Go ahead and try it now, visit the link above to get started if you want to create or join a group!   As always thank you to all of our donators and Patreon contributors who keep the forums going! 
BGryphon18

Bowling For Muscle (Prologue)

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Hello all,

So I've been out of the writing game for quite a while now, but a couple of friends (one old, one new) helped inspire me to put "pen to paper" again. Old friend and I did a brief role play about this idea which has been stewing in the back of my head for years now and the new one has helped spark idea into flame so here we are.

I've only done a couple pass through's of editing on this, and may make changes/edits later on but at least for now I can get some feedback with what people think of my general idea, and writing ability.

Anyway, enjoy and PLEASE leave any and all feedback. What you liked, what you didn't, what might need work, etc.

*****

               “Are you sure about this Bryan?  I’ve never had a head for business and you know the rules…”

               “Greg, honey, relax!  We’ve been over this a dozen times now.  First of all, yes I DO know the rules and have double and triple checked that we aren’t breaking any.  Second, you have a better head for it than you give yourself credit for, plus you have me AND a great staff behind you to help.  And finally, seeing as how we have the Grand Opening tomorrow, we’ve passed the point of no return.  You’ll be fine and we BOTH know it.  Just be your charming self and there is nothing to worry about.”  Bryan leaned in and kissed Greg before standing up from the table and heading off to the bathroom.

               Gregory Mann, or G-Mann as he was often referred to by his friends, was a multitude of contradictions that left most people baffled.  He stood at just shy of 6’4” in height and was over 310 lbs. of perfectly sculpted muscle (or at least that’s what his husband Bryan always said).  He had an almost boy-ish face topped with the blondest of blond shoulder length hair giving him the look of a California surfer which clashed magnificently with his imposing frame with its dusting of tattoos which on first glance would make you think he might be ready, willing and able to rip your head off, Greg was in fact very quiet, courteous and always willing to help anyone he could in any way he could.  The biggest juxtaposition of all though was probably the fact he had nearly unlimited power over all of space, time, dimension and matter yet wasn’t able to use any of it for himself.  All his life he had been taught the rules governing his lineage as a… well genie might be the most well-known term, though not very accurate.  His family was an off-shoot of those mythological entities who could grant wishes to the fortunate soul who freed them from captivity… or so Disney would tell us.  Actually he supposed he was more like a Q from Star Trek but with far less ego and a more involved governing body.  His family had done their own part throughout history in effecting positive change when they could, however were bound by certain rules like a genie was which he had to learn and adhere to, with the most important one being no using his abilities for personal gain.  Granted there was a SLIGHT big of wiggle room in that which had allowed him to build up his impressive physique in less than half the time it would have normally taken him, even with the best designer steroids and growth hormone but as he kept his proportions limited to what he COULD obtain within his lifetime, having it sooner wasn’t BREAKING a rule, just reinterpreting it.

               Up until about two years ago, he was very content in his meager life of work, lifting, eating and sleeping.  He worked as a personal trainer at one of the most popular and successful gyms in the city using his gift in his own way to help people obtain the bodies they wished for (at least most of the time).  It took a while before people wanted to train with him as they either wanted to just to get in his pants (a line he NEVER crossed) and when they couldn’t, stopped being a client, or were so intimidated by him that it took working in collaboration with other trainers to build up people’s trust.  Once they learned he was a teddy bear in the body of a real bear, they were more open and friendly with him and willing to be trained by him.  However, when he HAD earned a loyal enough client base, his word-of-mouth recommendations went through the roof.  He had almost perfect exponential growth of clients with his first client telling a friend, then they each told another, and so on.  It also helped the gym in advertising that all his clients got SPECTACULAR results in much shorter times than other trainers but it was also the personal touch he gave to them.  No only by means of his gift, but because he always connected with each client.  Learned about them as a person, kept up with their lives and became a genuine friend who they knew wanted to see them reach their potential.  Soon he was known as taking on the “hopeless” cases and providing people with changes they had only dreamed of.

               The only drawback people ever really had about him was his near hermit like tendencies outside of the gym.  Never one for much social interaction, he was more inclined to stay at home than go out to a club or party it up like the rest of his fellow “bros” did.  Still, that didn’t stop them from getting him out every once in a while, usually as their designated driver or to help lure in “the honeys” as his friends called them.  The problem was, or as close to a “problem” as you could call it, was that Greg was gay.  He never had much problem with going on these occasional outings but after a while, it was getting harder and harder to be happy for his friends who were meeting people, developing serious relationships, even getting married where as he was stagnant in his love life, and by stagnant he truly meant celibate.  He always politely turned down the advances of any of the women who came up to them in the bars or clubs and while he had sojourned into some of the gay clubs on occasion with his fellow personal trainers from work as repayment for his “wingman” assistance, it always felt so hollow and pointless as he refused to indulge in meaningless sex.

               That was, up until that one night where his entire world shifted in ways even he with all his powers never could have imagined. 

               It was very difficult on this particular night to reign in his personal feelings of loneliness and desire to use his powers for personal gain.  Why couldn’t HE find someone after all the good he had done?  Hadn’t he EARNED that by now?  Why couldn’t he be selfish just once and use his phenomenal cosmic powers to find HIS happily ever after?  In hindsight later that night, and most nights since, he often thought he HAD subconsciously done something to “tweak the circumstances” and the greater Powers-That-Be had allowed him this one, small selfish act.  To help himself justify it, he supposed that if he brought Bryan half the joy and happiness that he gave Greg, he had done it for Bryan and his wish fulfillment was a convenient byproduct.  Regardless, it was this night that he met Bryan and finally starting filling that void that he had been craving to fill.  Being a… being who could rework time, space and matter for those who were divined to have earned that right, he had seen his fair share of happiness including the realization of true love.  It was always so powerful to watch and tonight, Greg got to feel that for himself in a profound way.  As cliché as it is to say, he truly fell in love at first sight upon seeing Bryan.  He didn’t realize he was staring, and almost drooling until one of his friends asked him if he was okay, only to audibly gasp upon making eye contact with Bryan in response.  When he tried to tell his friends it was nothing, they looked over to see what, or who had caused their behemoth of a buddy to act like a school girl.  A head shorter than Greg and just over half his weight, Bryan was, by most of their opinions, nothing extraordinary.  Average looks to any casual observer, but to Greg, he almost literally shone with beauty.  A very awkward introduction ensued when one of his fellow trainers went over and introduced himself, said that his friend seemed to be smitten with him and if he would consider coming over and saying hello.

               Greg nearly collapsed when he saw his friend and the man of his dreams walking back towards him across the bar.  Thankfully he was able to semi-gracefully seat himself on a bar stool before his knees gave out entirely.  Determinedly staring straight ahead, he saw through the mirror behind the bar his future husband sidle up to the seat next to him while his friends made their silent retreat.  Thanks for the support guys he thought.  Still, maybe their lack of input would be for the best.

               “Hi.  I’m Bryan and your Greg right?”  Greg turned to see Bryan offering his hand to shake.  Nerves like he had never felt were flooding through Greg’s enormous body.  He was visibly shaking and took what could have been considered a rude amount of time before he swallowed hard, turned and offered his own trembling hand in response.  The moment they touched there was a sort of electric charge that they both felt.  Greg knew at once this was some sort of magic but he had never experienced the like before.  Bryan felt it too but with no frame of reference he chalked it up to a combination of static electricity and his own yearning to know more about (and touch more of) this man.

               They shook hands for about a minute before they broke apart and Greg was finally able to speak.  “Y-yeah.  Greg.  That’s me.” He managed to get out before being lost in Bryan’s eyes.  They were almost hypnotic, the most intense green he had ever seen yet so soothing… inviting… caring…  Greg blinked, cleared his throat and turned back to the bar to order a drink of water.  He had the most severe case of cotton mouth ever suddenly.

               “It’s nice to meet you Greg.  So… what brings you here tonight?”  Well that’s a better line than I usually get Greg thought.  Typically, it’s something like: ‘Hey stud, wanna fuck?’  Or ‘What say you and I get out of here and someplace more private so we can get to know each other better?’ Or they just start with the grabbing and groping… not that I’d mind HIM grabbing and groping… NO!  Don’t think about that now.  You just met him for crying out loud…

               “Hello?”  Bryan was waving his hand in front of Greg’s face to get his attention.  “Earth to Greg?  Did I say something to offend you?  Sorry I’m really no good at the whole first meeting thing… at least not in a non-business sort of way.  Typically, I know quite a bit about my clients before I meet them so I have a starting point for the conversation.  Otherwise I know that they are coming in for legal advice so I’m waiting to hear what the problem is and determine if I can fix it… and now I’m rambling on sounding like a complete idiot…”

               “NO!  No you… you’re fine.  Sorry I just sort of spaced out there.  Guess it was a ‘dumb jock’ moment…” Great… self-deprecating humor.  THAT’S always a big crowd pleaser.

               “Something tells me you are far from being a ‘dumb jock’.  Well far from the dumb part, the jock part I think you have a pretty solid grasp on.”  Greg saw Bryan’s eyes take a quick inventory of his body before returning to his face.  Wow, he appreciates my body but isn’t focused on it.  He wants to TALK to me not just engage me to sneak peaks and ogle me like merely a piece of meat.

               “Thanks.  Sorry I’m not usually like that, with the self-deprecating comments.  Just trying to break the ice I guess.  How about a change of subject?  You mentioned legal advice so I’m guessing you’re a lawyer or law student?”  Good Greg.  That showed him you were paying attention and that you are interested in him as a person too not just a sexy piece of ass… bet he has a great ass… JEEZE!  Get a hold of yourself man!

               “No longer a student as of a few months ago.  Now a full-fledged member of the Bar.  In that joyous limbo of no longer in school, but not yet employed.  For the moment I’m volunteering my expertise pro bono for people until I get hired on at a firm.  Usually for low income families who can’t afford the per hour rates of other lawyers and really just want to know if they have a case worth pursuing.” Greg couldn’t help but smile.  Pro bono work for low income families?  What’s next?  Volunteering at a children’s hospital?  Or maybe he takes care of his sickly grandmother?  Smart, kind and handsome… oh Greg are you in trouble!

               “That’s really great!  I’ve never needed any legal advice myself but can see how it would be confusing knowing how to begin and when you just want to know where your starting point is.”

               “Well I was given a lot in my life thanks to my families success so it’s nice to give back, or pass it on as I like to think of it.  So what about you?  What do you do for a living?”

               “Currently I’m a personal trainer at Mahoney’s Gym downtown.  Not as glamorous as a lawyer but it’s my way of giving back too.”  Oh… oh no… that sounded rude didn’t it?  It did… quick… say something else to correct-

               “That’s really great!” Wait, seriously!? “I’ve always admired personal trainers as they help people get into better shape and live longer, healthier lives!  Plus, you obviously know your way around a weight room… unless that’s some sort of bizarre permanent allergic reaction that’s got you all swollen up like that!” Bryan blinked and hastily grabbed his drink.  He’s nervous too!  I don’t think he meant to say that just like I didn’t… huh… level playing field!

               “Actually it might be!  Maybe I should go see a doctor in the morning and have a physical… unless I get one tonight from someone else…” Smooth… VERY subtle Greg.  This guy might just be polite and talking to you because he was put on the spot and now you’re going to scare him off.  Not EVERYONE is attracted to muscle like YOU are… Geeze you really ARE a dumb jock sometimes…

               “Hello?  Did I lose you again?”  Bryan was waving his hand in Greg’s face again to get his attention.  I must look like a complete lunatic…

               “Sorry, lost in my own thoughts.  And I’m sorry for saying that.  I don’t know what came over me as that was a really inappropriate thing to say to someone I met all of 5 minutes ago and-”

               “I said I’d really like that.  At least I would after we’ve had a chance to talk some more, preferably somewhere that doesn’t have the house beat on endless repeat drumming into our skulls!  How about we go and get some coffee around the corner?”  Bryan reached out his hand which Greg stared at for at least 5 seconds before looking up into Bryan’s eyes and saw a genuine desire to get to know him better not the typical lustful gaze he saw from guys here.

               “That sounds great.” Greg replied and took Bryan’s hand feeling that same electric current pass through them.  They both gasped and after a couple seconds it passed.  They both smiled and headed out the door not even hearing Greg’s friends and colleagues cheering him on from the table they passed.

               They spent the next couple hours at the café down the street talking, laughing and realizing how comfortable they were with each other.  It wasn’t until they exchanged phone numbers and arranged to have dinner the following night that Greg even realized that he hadn’t ‘cheated’ and used his powers the entire time.  Normally he would have done a quick reading of someone to determine the sort of person they were, but with Bryan, the thought never crossed his mind and for the first time, he realized what a joy that first date, getting-to-know-you feeling was.  He got to be genuinely shocked, awed, impressed and a whole range of emotion by everything Bryan shared with him.

               He WAS however curious what that ‘charge’ was he felt when they first touched and after scouring his personal library of texts and resources was left with no other options but to either chalk it up to a mystery… or else ask his mother if she knew.  The second was a deeply uncomfortable thought, not because his mother wouldn’t know, or would judge him for it, but because she would then want to know EVERY. SINGLE. DETAIL. about Bryan and seeing as how they only had the one date so far, he wasn’t up for that level of third-degree mothering.  So for now, he sat on it and spent the whole of the next day in eager anticipation of his date with Bryan.

               “Well, well, well.  Looky here boys.  Why I do believe we have ourselves a Greg who is, dare I say it, HAPPY!?”  One of the other trainers, Danielle came over to him as he was staring at the clock trying to determine how much more time he had before his date.

               “What are you talking about Danielle?  I’m always in a good mood.”  He replied trying to play into the banter yet cut it off before it grew into a full-on ribbing session.

               “Oh you’re always upbeat with your clients, and there’s never a day that goes by without a ‘good morning’ from you, but I mean that certain, special kind of happy that only a new romance can bring.  That glow you give off at the onset of a new love.  Though I can tell you didn’t get lucky as you’re not giving off THAT kind of glow…”

               “W-what… How did… Who…?” He stammered in response feeling the heat starting to rise to his face, not out of shame, but truly confused as to how she heard so quickly as none of the guys he was out with last night were at work that day (part of the reason why they wanted to go out the night before was so that they could get wasted and not have to go into work the next day with a hangover).

               “Sorry Big Guy.  I’m not at liberty to divulge my sources.  But rumor has it, you spent the majority of your night in the company of someone who had you grinning like a school girl the whole time.” Danielle always did have a way of teasing that was just SLIGHTLY ‘Mean Girls’ but with a root in sincerity.  Sure enough: “Seriously though, it’s good to see you like this.  You’re a great guy and you deserve to find someone who makes you happy.  And if he happens to have a brother who plays for the other team…” She grinned at him before giving him a hug.

               “I’ll send him your way.  Thanks Danielle.  It’s still really new but yes he does make me feel giddy as a school girl.” Greg grinned back.  “Speaking of, would you mind taking over my last client today?  I’m sweating bullets and it has nothing to do with my workout so I’d like some extra time to get ready and try to calm my nerves.”

               “Consider it done.  Go, primp, impress, and screw his brains out.” Danielle was nothing if not blunt sometimes, but that was the basic, and perhaps crudest way of putting exactly what Greg hoped to do that evening.

*****

               Well his date didn’t go as planned, but in many ways it turned out better than he hoped.  He managed to spill his drink all over himself within the first 2 minutes.  This was after showing up late because of some kind of school parade that blocked off several streets near his apartment.  Then, he found he had gotten tickets for the wrong show time and had to wait another hour before the next showing.  Still, he was able to forget about most of that when he looked at Bryan who just grinned and said that everything happens for a reason and that he just had to look hard to find the positive in it.  Indeed, he did find that when he realized that he was able to help the valet find a set of keys he dropped and was frantic to find; by needing to change his shirt for the spare in his car he found that the one he was wearing ripped when he tried to take it off meaning had he tried to reach across the table to get the butter or hold Bryan’s hand, it would have ripped all down the back in the middle of a very public restaurant (privately though, he would have liked to see Bryan’s reaction to that); and the show time they wanted to go to was packed with a host of very rowdy college students that ended up needing to be forcibly removed from the theater and would have resulted in them not enjoying the show as much.  Greg was too familiar with the inner workings of Fate to know that these things all added up to something, but he was too focused on Bryan to really dwell on it.

Granted his hormones were telling him to do one thing, but his heart was telling him to do another.  In fact, it was several dates in before they got physical beyond holding hands or kissing, something his co-workers were quick to comment on and add to his ‘School Girl Crush’ list.  While it was all in good fun, Greg was actually quite proud of the fact that they went slow and didn’t have sex until several weeks later.  It was like emotional tantric sex: the buildup was slow, focused but most of all savored.  When the night finally did arrive, it was after much discussion and a feeling by both parties that the time was right.

               Fast forward several months and we find Greg and Bryan are almost inseparable.  After increasing their dates to several times a week for months, they finally decided that they should move in together to give their relationship a real shake down.  Turned out, this was a good plan.  There wasn’t quite the Oscar and Felix dynamic between them but there were definite moments of friction and adaptation that tested their resolve.  However, like the best couples do, they talked, they listened and the compromised.  Tensions eased, life progressed and they grew closer and closer together.

               Finally, one night, the idea of marriage occurred to Greg and he knew that he needed to observe certain family traditions before that could come to pass, with the first hurdle being Bryan needed be told about his powers and family obligations followed closely by needing to meet his family to undergo their inspection.  Not to mention, they needed to test Bryan’s resolve under various conditions to ensure he really loved Greg and wouldn’t abuse any of their knowledge.

               “Honey, can you come in here a minute?  We need to talk about something.”  Greg was shaking like a leaf from head to toe with the prospect of this particular impending conversation, more so than his first meeting with Bryan. 

               “Sure.  Everything okay?”  Bryan asked as he walked into the kitchen to find his lover pacing the floor, wringing his hands with enough force to splinter wood.

               “Please, sit down.” Greg pulled out a chair for him to sit on and resumed his pacing.

               “Ooookaaaay.  Should I be worried, excited or both?”  Bryan eyed Greg suspiciously as the giant continued pacing.

               “Well if you were, it would match what I’m feeling.  I need to tell you something about me and it’s big.  REALLY big.  And to be honest, what you do afterwards will be the crux of our relationship.  This is a Pass/Fail test babe and I needed to wait until I was sure you were ready for it.”

               “Greg, you’re starting to scare me a bit.  Just tell me what it is.”  Bryan looked at him with his hands folded on the table and his Lawyer Gaze, as Greg called it, fixed on his face.  A piercing look that told you that you had his complete and undivided attention and that his mind was as open as possible to what he was about to hear.  Absorb it all, then process and finally react.

               “Okay.  I’ve got what you might call a unique family tree.  For hundreds of years my family has been in the business of helping deserving people in a very… unconventional sort of way…”

               “Greg, I know colorful language when I hear it, say it plainly and don’t sugar coat it.”

               “Right… you’re right.  Okay.  What I’m trying to say is that my family…” Greg gulped, took a deep breath and said “is magical.  We’re a sort of off-shoot of genies granting wishes to people who are chosen for us.  Each has their own unique brand of magic and how they can affect people.  Mine is a brand of physical magic allowing me to change the biology of the person in various ways: curing disease, or, more commonly, enhancing their bodies and overall health.  Ever notice how my clients always have such amazing results?  Almost superhuman ones?  Well, that’s why.  They are drawn to me so that I can help them change their circumstances for the better to help balance out something that happened to them in the past, or prepare them to handle something that will happen to them in the future.”

               Bryan sat there for a few moments in silence as he let what he just heard wash over him before speaking.

               “Okay.  So let me make sure I understand what you’re saying:  You’re some sort of genie who can change the bodies of anyone you want and you use this ability to help people get more physically fit?  That the bare bones of it?”  Greg rocked his head from side to side before responding.

               “Well… sort of.  It’s not really ANYONE I want technically.  Granted I CAN but by the laws and rules that govern my family, we’re only really supposed to in deserving cases.  Sort of like how you do pro bono work for people who can’t pay but still deserve justice.  My calling is similar in that I do it within the Laws of Magic rather than the Laws of Man.”

               “I see.  Okay… and who is it that determines if these people are worthy?  You?”  Bryan was still in lawyer mode which Greg couldn’t tell was a good thing or a bad thing yet.

               “No.  They’re either sent to me or I find my way to them by way of circumstance.  For instance, say I am in the car trying to decide if I should take one route to work vs. another.  There may be a traffic jam on the one route forcing me to the other and that’s how I would find my next ‘client’.  Or they end up being dragged to a party by a friend that they really didn’t want to attend that I happen to be attending.  Usually something small to sort of nudge us together so that I can help them.”

               “Mmhmm, mmhmm.  Okay then.  One last question: is this a joke?  Because this is not your usual brand of humor mister.  I mean it’s a very interesting story, but…” Bryan had stood up and walked towards Greg looking at him with his Lawyer Gaze.  Greg knew that he was taking in all of Greg’s body language to determine if he was lying.  It was part of what made him such a great lawyer.

               “No.  I’m not lying and I know how hard this is to accept from your perspective so to help prove it, I want you to choose something about yourself that you’d like to change.  Something small that I can change that will prove to you what I’m saying is the truth.”

               “So what, now I’m one of those souls ‘destined’ to come to you for help?  Hate to break it to you Greg but I haven’t had any sort of trauma in my past that you need to help correct…” Bryan turned away and started his own pacing of the kitchen now.  Undoubtedly he was going over everything in his head now taking into account all he heard and witnessed during Greg’s ‘testimony’.

               “I told you that it’s not always something that’s happened yet, and it’s not only those people that I can change.  Think of it like a scale: everyone lands somewhere on a scale from, say 1 to 10.  The higher the number, the more powerful the magic I can use to help them.  And it’s not ONLY in terms of physical traits but that’s sort of my School of Mastery.  I can affect other changes just not with as much… finesse.  Just think of something you always wanted to change or enhance about yourself, don’t tell me what it is, just focus on it and let my magic do the rest.”

               Bryan eyed him dubiously but as a lawyer, he was loathe to make a judgement based on circumstantial evidence.  If this was a way to give him hard proof, in either way, then he was all for it.  “Okay… let’s see.  Alright, I’ve got something in mind.  What now?”

               “Now, you just relax and let me do my thing.”  Greg closed his eyes and let his other senses take the reins.  It took next to no time at all to connect with Bryan’s aura as Greg had come to know it as well as his own.  However, after that was done, the slightly more difficult task of reading his wish came into play.  In the rare instances whenever Greg connected to make a change with someone who had a conscience wish, it always took a bit longer to filter out all the ‘background’ noise.  Errant thoughts both connected to his wish as well as those running in the background (doctor’s appointments, favorite scenes in movies, trying to remember your third grade teacher’s name, etc.)  Finally, when that was all done, he was able to zero in on the change Bryan chose and Greg couldn’t help but grin, mentally grin that is.  Of course he would choose something like this: small, yet undeniable.  Solid, irrefutable evidence for his lawyer boyfriend, hopefully soon-to-be fiancé.  Greg opened his eyes and let his mental grin become a physical one.

               “What?  What are you grinning like the Cheshire Cat for?  Oh, you WERE messing with me weren’t you… You know, I have to admit, you did an AMAZING job of fooling me.” Bryan turned around and began walking back towards the bedroom, still in full tirade about being the supposed butt of Greg’s joke.  He made it about 3 steps before he felt Greg’s hand on his right arm, spinning him around and found himself being silenced with a kiss full of such a passion that for several moments Bryan actually stopped thinking.  He felt Greg’s lips pressing into his with such precision; just the right pressure, just the right way.  Controlled movements while Greg’s tongue traced its way across his teeth and played with his own tongue.  After what felt like minutes they broke apart and Bryan stood there, eyes closed, mouth slightly open, breathing shallow as he slowly regained control over his mind and body.  He couldn’t recall EVER being kissed like that by Greg or anyone.  It was… magical.

               “I should have known you’d pick something like that to change, but on the bright side, at least I got to make the change in a creative way we both really enjoyed.” Greg was grinning at him waiting for Bryan’s brain to shift back into gear.

               “W-what do you mean?”  Suddenly, the fog lifted and Bryan remembered that his ‘wish’ was to correct his teeth.  He HATED dentists but always wanted to have that perfect smile and white teeth that would shock his clients and dazzle his juries.  Hesitantly, he ran his tongue over his own teeth only to find the landscape VASTLY different than what he remembered.  His eyes grew wide before he bolted into the bathroom to examine them in the mirror.  They were… perfect.  Straight, even, and a shade of white JUST below that over-bleached look that everyone KNEW wasn’t natural.  His dream teeth, his dream smile was now grinning back at him from the mirror.  He examined them for another moment before Greg came in behind him grinning his own toothy grin.

               “Well?” He asked caught between the happiness at making his boyfriend even more handsome and happy and the fear that he was about to be rejected by the man he loved so much.  After about a minute in pensive thought as his tongue continued to play across his teeth, Bryan finally turned around, looked up into Greg’s face… and punched him as hard as he could on the arm. “OW!  Hey!  What was that for?” It hadn’t really hurt, physically but the shock made him cry out.

               “You damn well better not make all your changes to people in that way or you will be in so much trouble your entire family won’t have enough magic to save you.”

               Greg stared at him in utter disbelief for nearly a minute.  Finally, he broke into shaky laughter and hugged Bryan so tight he nearly broke his back.  “Y-you mean it?  You believe me and… and you’re okay with it?”

               “Well it never made it within a football field length of the list of things I was expecting you to tell me, but it’s by no means a deep DARK secret that makes me want to run in the other direction.  Yes, I’m still processing and in sort of shock, but I love you and if nothing bad has, or will happen because of this, who am I to judge?”  Bryan grinned his radiant new smile and Greg was so overcome he kissed him with (almost) as much passion as he did a few minutes ago in the kitchen.  He accepts it!  Greg thought in blissful triumph.  He accepts ME!  All of me and all that I do.

               Greg broke the kiss and was nearly crying in relief and joy.  First hurdle down.  Which means…

               “What is it?  There’s not something ELSE Earth shattering you have to tell me is there?” Bryan looked at him with concern mixed with a touch of bemusement.

               “What?  Oh, no… well not ELSE just, sort of, in addition to.  Come with me.” Greg took Bryan’s hand and lead him back to the kitchen to sit down.  Once Bryan was seated and looking quizzically at Greg once again pacing a hole in the floor, Greg took a deep breath and faced him.  “I’m overjoyed that you took this news as well as you did.  I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous but part of me was sure you would be able to take it.  You are the most incredible man I could ever have hoped to meet, let alone fall in love with.  With everything I can do, all the power I possess, you have made me feel even more special than all of that.  Which is why…” Greg took another steadying breath, walked forward and got down on one knee.  As he did, there was a whirl of color and a small popping noise as a ring box materialized in Greg’s hands.  “You would make me the happiest man alive, in any time, place or dimension if you would do me the honor of becoming my husband.  Will you m-”

               “Yes.  In every language and with everything I am, yes!”  Bryan cut him off but for one of the first times Greg could recall, he seemed to have succumb to his emotions.  The always in-command, almost Vulcan-like demeanor seemed to vanish from Bryan as they both dissolved into tears.  Greg took out the ring to put it on Bryan’s finger.  No sooner had he finished and pulled him up into another kiss before there was a riot of applause and cheering filling their apartment.

               “CONGRATULATIONS!” The echoing cry rang through the apartment causing both of them to jump (Bryan more so than Greg) and turn to the living room in surprise.  There, with all the decorations and fanfare, was a dozen or so people clapping.

               “W-who?” Bryan started to ask before he felt Greg’s body start to shake with laughter.

               “I should have guessed… Detector ward on the ring mom?”

               “Well of course!  You think I was going to miss out on this moment, or get a paltry play-by-play from you later?  No, no, no, that just wouldn’t do!  I wanted to be here in person and give you my blessing in person.” A stout woman who Bryan could immediately tell was Greg’s mother, came forward to hug them both.  “Oh my dear, I’m so happy for you!  Both of you!  I’m sorry we haven’t been properly introduced before now, but protocol forbade it.  I’m Annette, Greg’s-”

               “Mother” Bryan finished grinning at her.  “I see a lot of you in him, or I suppose technically him in you.  Plus, no one but a mother knows how to give a telling off followed by a hug like that.”  She grinned at him and looked up to Greg.

               “I like him.  You picked a good one honey.” She looked down to Bryan and put her hand on the side of his head bringing him in for a kiss on the cheek.

               “I think he picked me to be honest.” Greg replied and hugged Bryan a little tighter to him.

               “Well whoever picked who, you both lucked out.  Now… for the real test…” She looked very seriously at them both as she rolled up her sleeves.

               “Oh Mom, can’t this wait?  Those tests are SO archaic… can’t you just trust me…”

               “Hush dear.  This is important and must be done.”  She started chanting quietly and moving her hands in intricate patterns before there was a bright flash and the most amazing feast Bryan had ever seen appeared on their dining room table.  “Are you one of those namby-pamby men who can’t eat more than a bird, or do you know how to pack it away?”  Greg sighed.  Bryan however laughed.

               “Annette, let me share with you MY family secret.” He leaned in close to her, glancing back and forth in a covert sort of way. “I’m Jewish.  I’ve been training for this my WHOLE life and I’m about to make BOTH my mother’s very proud.”  He stood up, held out his arm to her to escort her to the table while she let out a howl of laughter.

               “Oh Greg!  I REALLY like him!  Oh you’re going to fit in JUST fine my dear.” She accepted his arm and they all started to gather around the table.

*****

               “Why did you never introduce me to your family before?” Bryan asked later that night after all their guests had left.  “They are great and I wish I had met them sooner… oh… am I going to have to watch how I say that around you?” Bryan gave a mock look of shock and concern at Greg.

               “Ha, ha.  Very funny mister.  Unfortunately, it’s this old tradition that they don’t ‘pop’ up until someone gets engaged.  We’ve tried for years now to have it overturned as it’s not like they have horns, or green skin but it’s still around.  I’m really glad you all got along though.  AND I’m VERY impressed with your show of gluttony tonight.”  Greg grinned as Bryan groaned getting into bed.  Once he was laying down Greg started to gently rub his stomach to help relieve the intense pressure it was under.

               “Your mom could give mine lessons… I don’t think I will be able to eat until next week!”  Bryan moaned as he rolled over onto his side to face Greg.  He placed his left hand on Greg’s massive pec and was wiggling his ring finger to get a feel for it.  “It certainly has been a whirlwind evening.  I find out you can do real, life changing magic, then you propose, THEN your family pops in, LITERALLY out of nowhere for an engagement party before I get challenged to, and WIN an eating contest with your older brother who comes very close to making YOU look small.”

               “The look on his face… it will take him YEARS to live that down!” Greg grinned kissing Bryan.  “I was half expecting him to give himself another stomach just to show you up, but he let you have your hard earned victory.”

               “Ugh… an extra stomach would come in so handy right now!  Split the load.  Still, I had an amazing time getting to know your family and am happy they seemed to like me.”

               “They’ll love you almost as much as I do.  I think mom was actually jealous of your mom that she didn’t get to have you as a son from the beginning!”

               “She’s great.  I can tell she loves you a lot and we will get along very well… I just need to find a way to get her back for this discomfort… but MAN can she cook… er, conjure?” Bryan asked quizzically looking at Greg.

               “Yeah it’s a form of conjuring.  Don’t worry, you’ll learn more about it in the coming months.” Greg told him rolling over onto his back.

               “I will?  You’re not about to tell me that I am about to get magic by association am I?” Bryan looked at him with a bit of worry on his face.

               “No.  Well not quite.  You WILL have to go through a sort of pre-marital course to learn more about my family and the Laws of Magic as they pertain to someone who is non-magical marrying into a magical family.  Just so that you know more about what we do, how we do it, and what our limitations are.  Plus, you have to learn them so you don’t accidently break any which I’m sure you can understand being a lawyer.”

               “Oh… I guess that makes sense.” Bryan sighed deeply “Great… I just finish law school less than a year ago and I have to go back again.  You better be worth it!” Bryan grinned as he looked over at Greg poking him in the chest with a finger.

               “Well if you haven’t been convinced by now, I don’t know what else I can do…” Greg replied with a tone that suggested that he was waiting for Bryan to tell him exactly what else he could do.

*****

               Now, a year later, Bryan had completed his “training” and came up with this bizarre business idea that they were about to embark on.  Despite all his reassurances, Greg couldn’t help but feel that this venture was close to crossing the line on several of their laws and could land them both in serious trouble.  Still, as Bryan was a lawyer, he did have an uncanny knack for understanding law, even supernatural law which helped to put Greg’s mind at ease.  Plus, he was helpless for Bryan’s smile and the way he would tease that spot on the back of his neck…

               “I really hope you know what you’re doing Bryan” Greg sighed to himself as he sat at the table going over their profit projections, staff records, and inventory reports intermingled with the various spell books, incantations, wards and other magic’s that had to be woven into their new enterprise.

*****

“Ladies and Gentlemen!  Welcome to the Grand Opening of Bowling for Muscle!  We are so pleased to have been welcomed by this community with such enthusiasm and support!  In honor of our Grand Opening, for today only everyone is welcome to enjoy a free game!  Also, make sure to register for our frequent bowler’s club, sign up for bowling leagues and classes to improve your game as well as enjoy the many delicious foods available at our in-house café!  And remember, it’s not just bowling, it’s bowling with muscle!”  Greg finished with a smile and a double bicep pose amidst the many flashes from cameras and general applause.  He stepped down from the podium, took the ceremonial giant scissors and cut the ribbon in front of their main entrance.  One more bicep pose for the cameras and he ushered in the first groups of people inside.

               “See?  Now that wasn’t SO terrible was it?” Bryan asked grinning toothily at him from a few feet away.  “I told you that you’d be great and considering this turn out, I was spot on… as usual.”

               “Your humility never ceases to amaze me Bryan.” Greg grinned back before pulling him in for a quick kiss.  “I’ll admit you have been right so far, but there is still so much that could go wrong here.”

               “Greg, I love you, but you worry too much and sometimes it drives me crazy!  Take a breath, stop THINKING and just enjoy today.  You’ve got a great turn out, the press has been nothing but supportive of this and it didn’t require an ounce of” Bryan crossed his arms and blinked his eyes in a mock impersonation of Jeannie from the old “I Dream of Jeannie” shows.  He often did this in public as a way to avoid any eavesdropping as well as knowing that it caused just a modicum of annoyance in Greg… he HATED that show…

               “You know perfectly well just how much… extra we put into this place… and PLEASE stop doing that gesture…” Greg begged him knowing full well that he wouldn’t.

               “I mean for this portion of it.  This was good ol’ fashioned hard work and positive PR.  This city is happy to have this place and we both know that this is much more than a simple business venture.  You’re going to do great work here and we both know it.  This town needs you as much as you need it.  You said yourself that you’ve felt like you weren’t living up to your potential and this place is a way to change all that!  Just focus on the good you’ll be doing and the worries will fade away… or be coaxed away by other methods…” Bryan then reached around and squeezed Greg’s ass for the most fleeting of moments causing the big man to jump slightly.

               “HEY!  You…” Greg started to say but his anger evaporated when he looked down at his partner.  Bryan always DID have that effect on him which he both loved and hated sometimes.  “You’re right.  Speaking of, I think it’s time for me to get in there and start on some of these interviews… gotta keep that positive PR coming right?”  He leaned in for one last kiss before turning and heading inside.

               “I’ll see you after work.”  Bryan kissed him one last time before he turned and headed for his car grinning the whole way.  “Big ol’ worry wart…” He mumbled as he got into the car and drove off to his office.

               Once inside, Greg was almost mobbed by the various TV, radio and newspaper reporters that wanted to be the first to talk to Greg more about his new business.

               “Mr. Mann, I’m Daisy from Channel 8 news and I’d love to sit down with you for a few minutes for an interview.” A petite red-haired woman said when Greg was barely a foot inside the doors.  He had seen her on TV several times after they moved to town and now that she was here in person, he was able to get a “read” on her.  One of the ways that Greg was able to help those “worthy” of his powers was to get close to them to judge their auras.  The most modern way to describe it was that once he was within range of them, sort of like a Wi-Fi connection, he was able to download their Wikipedia page.  Personal highlights and statistics were usually all that was there as well as a sort of grading system that determined just how powerful of a “wish” the person was eligible for.  Daisy wasn’t a bad person, but she was a typical millennial in several respects, predominantly eager to be successful in her profession.  While she wasn’t one of those who were guided to Greg for his help, he WAS allowed, at his own discretions, to help anyone he chose so long as it didn’t unbalance the scales too much.  Daisy wasn’t in need of his help but he was pleased to know that she was really intrigued by his business venture here and eager to get the inside scoop above all her fellow reporters.  She also had an energy that “tickled” him more so than any of the others so he agreed to sit down with her first.

               “Well Ms. Daisy, I’d be honored.  Let me just check in with the staff first to make sure there’s nothing that needs my immediate attention and I’ll be right with you.  Last thing I need is for a computer malfunction or obstinate kitchen appliances to make me look bad on opening day right?”  He flashed her a smile and turned to head towards to counter.  “Lily, how are things going so far?  Any hiccups I need to know about?” 

               “No sir, Mr. Mann.  So far everything is working perfectly.  We’ve gotten several people to sign up for classes and everyone seems to be having a terrific time.  All systems nominal Captain” She said with a quick salute and a grin.

               Greg couldn’t help but smile back and return the salute “Very well then.  Carry on Number One”.  Of course, Greg KNEW that everything would work perfectly as that was all part of their design, and connections.  A “friend of the family” had set Greg up with a computer system that was completely flawless for their purposes.  Needless to say, magic and technology could work quite harmoniously when need be and this system was one of the prime examples.

               He was also very pleased with Lily and her dedication to this business.  She was one of those people who was drawn to Greg by a series of nearly soul-crushing events in her short life.  She was one of his favorite examples of why he loved what he did because when she was told that he could make all her dreams come true, all she asked for was the chance to be healthy again so she could help people like she used to.  One of the many things that plagued her was a virulent cancer that would have killed her several months ago.  She had no family, was buried by more debt than most people can fathom, on the streets after getting nearly all her possessions repossessed and simply waiting for death.  It was she who first drew Greg and Bryan to this town and after they had the property bought, and construction underway, Greg could think of no one better qualified to help him run this place.  So after curing her cancer and telling her what their plans were, she had agreed with nothing short of pure joy to be the Assistant Manager.  Plus, as an added bonus, they were building an apartment above the alley that they offered to her, rent free, while she continued to rebuild her life.

               “How are things going over here Aunt Tia?”  Greg had continued on to the café attached to the alley and was checking in with his head chef.  In reality, Tia was actually the ancient Greek goddess Hestia who was here as a special favor to him for the first few weeks of his opening.  Hestia, the goddess of hearth and home, was one of the most accomplished chefs in all of history (THE most accomplished if you were to ask her opinion).  She had agreed to help him out given their long standing family history and also used her own brand of magic to attract and cultivate the most talented chefs in the area given that she was only going to be here for a short time.  She wasn’t REALLY his Aunt, but she had been such a good friend of his mother that he considered her as such.

               “Splendidly Greg, simply splendidly!  You’ve assembled a fine staff here and they will be the best in the state by the time I’m through!  But don’t take my word for it!  Have a sample of their fine work” She pushed a plate towards him which he politely declined.

               “Thank you Aunt Tia but you know what my diet is currently like.  I’m sure it’s exemplary though!  Thank you again for your help.”  He leaned in to give her a kiss on the cheek before turning to head back toward the entrance for his interview.

               “Ack!  You and your ‘diet’.  You need to eat more…”

               “What?  To ‘put some meat on my bones’?  Tia you think EVERYONE needs to eat more and you can’t honestly say that I don’t already have quite enough meat on these bones.” He flexed at her while giving her a toothy smile which she returned.

               “No… I can’t say that but I still think you need to eat more.  And something more substantial than that bland old ‘chicken and rice’ you always seem to have.  Let me make you something more flavorful!”

               “Tia you know how much I love your cooking and in a few months when my bulking season starts, I’ll take you up on it, I promise!  For now, I have an appointment to get to and you have dozens of other hungry guests to feed!”  He waved and turned back around towards the entrance.  As he made his way back, he couldn’t help but take it all in: everyone seemed to be having a great time.  Kids, adults, men and women all were smiling everywhere he looked.  Maybe this WILL work he thought and couldn’t help but smile knowing what Bryan would say if he could see him now.

               “Ah, Ms. Daisy, I’m ready for my close up when you are.” He grinned at her when he found her waiting for him at the entrance.  “Would you care to sit down or…?”

               “Actually for at least part of it I was hoping we could start outside and then work our way in to showcase the various aspects of your business… if that’s alright with you…” She seemed a bit flustered and nervous.  How endearing Greg thought as he smiled warmly back at her.

               “Lead the way Ms. Daisy.  I’ll go wherever you’d like me to go.  After all, you’re the professional here.  I’m still a novice at this whole thing!”  She smiled back at him and visibly relaxed before heading back outside.

               After a few minutes of set up, they were ready to begin filming.  “Just relax and if it helps, focus on me.  Forget the camera is there and talk to me like you would anyone else having a normal conversation.”  Ironic that he had to put her at ease mere moments ago and now she was calming HIS nerves. 

               “I’ll do my best.” Greg replied with the feeling butterflies the size of pterodactyls that were eager to free themselves from his stomach.

               “And 5… 4… 3…” the cameraman announced and then transitioned to using his fingers for 2 and 1 before pointing at Daisy.  The red light came on and Daisy switched to reporter mode.

               “This is Daisy Morgan with Channel 8 news coming to you from the newly opened Bowling for Muscle.  We’re joined today by Mr. Greg Mann, owner and operator of the new business.  Mr. Mann, thank you for joining us this afternoon.”

               “Happy to be here Ms. Daisy and thank you for taking the time to come to our Grand Opening!”

               “First things first, what made you decide to open up a bowling alley Mr. Mann?”

               “Well I had a small town bowling alley growing up that my friends and I liked to spend time in on weekends.  Granted this was in an era before smartphones and the Internet, but it was still a great place to hang out and enjoy time with friends.”

               “Speaking of kids, we’ve been told you have several classes geared towards youth that you are offering.  Care to tell us a bit more about those?”

               “Well we have instruction classes for children up through the elderly who want to learn more about the sport and hone their skills.  We are also teaming up with local schools to have programs designed to supplement their existing physical education classes and even their science and math classes to learn more about the physics and geometry of bowling.”

               “That sounds great, and I’m sure many parents will appreciate the chance for their kids to get out and away from their computer and phone screens for a bit, at least for a while!  What other sort of programs or promotions are you currently offering?”

               “Well we have an amazing café that is open from 10AM to close that offers a wide range of meals for anything from brunch after church to a romantic dinner for two.  After all, nothing says romance like a night of bowling, am I right?” Greg chuckled a bit as did Daisy at this comment.  “We are also partnering with the schools to offer cooking classes as well as work-study credit in the café.  Teaching them about inventory, sales, and introducing them to the world of customer service while having some fun, and getting them out of the last hour of class a couple days a week!” Again both he and Daisy laughed at this comment.

               “Sounds like you really are engaged with the youth of the area.”

               “Absolutely.  My partner and I have always had a strong connection to a community and know that it’s the youth that will provide the best and most positive change in any community.  They have the creativity, drive and stamina to help effect long term change and we just want to help provide them a safe and diverse way to do that.”

               “Speaking of your partner, are they here today to help you with the Grand Opening?”

               “Unfortunately no.  He has his own work to do and is very much of the ‘sink or swim’ school of learning.  This was mostly his brain-child but he has other obligations to prevent him from being here full time.  He’s very much the brain and I’m the brawn of the operation!”

               “You certainly do seem to have enough brawn for the job!  Is that where the name for your business came from and if not, what are its origins?  It’s definitely a unique moniker for a bowling alley!” Greg couldn’t help but laugh at that one.  This was the one question he was expecting from the start and had his answer ready.

               “Well partly yes.  As you can see I’ve got a SLIGHT affinity for weightlifting and was a personal trainer for several years before we started this place.  One of the things I would always hear was about my ‘bowling ball’ shoulders, arms, and even calves once or twice!  So when we started talking about opening our own business, my partner assumed I was going to say I wanted to open a gym since I knew the industry so well, but I wanted something that was more ‘fun’.  Plus, I’ve helped design a workout program with the local gyms that incorporates bowling as a lower impact activity to help transition people into more active lifestyles, including weightlifting.  Most people are too intimidated by people like me to go to a gym so I wanted a way to let people do something fun while still giving them a good workout.”

               “Well you are certainly an impressive specimen so I can understand that!  Sounds like you are really dedicated to helping people in multiple ways.”

               “It’s my calling Ms. Daisy.  I’ve been extremely blessed in my life and have a lot to teach anyone who is willing to learn.  I want to help make people’s lives better, even if it’s only for an hour at a time while wearing ugly bowling shoes!”  She laughed again helping put him at even greater ease.  Greg always felt so odd talking about himself so she was helping keep him calm.

               “Well I certainly wish you the best of luck in your endeavors Mr. Mann.  We at Channel 8 hope many of our viewers will stop by your place which is open 7 days a week from 10AM to 2AM Monday through Saturday and 10AM to 10PM on Sunday.  This is Daisy Morgan, Channel 8 News.”

               “And we’re out” the cameraman said lowering the camera and starting to pack up their equipment.

               “That was great Mr. Mann.  You’re a natural at this!”  She grinned at him while starting to help pack up the camera equipment.  Greg couldn’t help but chuckle.

               “Well I don’t know about THAT but I appreciate the compliment all the same.  Was there anything else you needed from me?”

               “I think we got everything we needed.  Thank you so much for your time and I expect you’ll see me again later as it’s been ages since I dusted off my bowling shoes and this alley is too inviting to pass up!”

               “Well we’re happy to have you and as a thank you for coaching me through my first TV interview, I’d like to offer you a meal on the house when you visit!  Just come and find me, or tell one of the staff to come find me and I’ll cover your bill.”

               “Oh!  Well… thank you!  That’s very generous of you!  As funny as it sounds, date night here with my husband sounds like just the fun night out we need, and the smells coming from that kitchen have me almost salivating like a dog!  Your staff must be top notch!”

               “Ha!  Well Tia certainly will agree with you there and she has yet to make a dish that I haven’t thought tasted like Ambrosia” Good one he thought.  Granted she won’t get that joke…

               “Well thank you again and I’ll see you later tonight!” She shook his hand and got into the news van to head back to the station.  No thank YOU Ms. Daisy he thought.  But dinner is just the start of your reward for such a great interview.  Smiling to himself, Greg headed back into the building to start mingling with his customers.

               As soon as he got to the counter, Greg was hit by an aura wave stronger than he had felt in ages.  Someone in here needed him, or at least his talents.  Guess Bryan was right.  Then again he’s USUALLY right… Those enchantments are already working to be bringing in people so soon.

               Walking around the alley to try and help zero in on the source, he was approached by several people of all kinds to either thank him for opening the alley, for their free game, to complimenting him on his physique, to flirting with him.  One older couple, who had lived in this town for the past 70 years, said how grateful they were that he had bought the old alley and refurbished it for the youth of today.  They shared with him their story of how they had come here all the time in their youth on dates and that they were so glad that he had kept so many personal touches from the old place while updating it to the standards of today.

               “I’ve always believed in honoring the work of the past and that it has a place in the present.” He told them grinning and shaking their hands.  During their talks he found that they were the proud parents of three children and 10 grandchildren.  High school sweethearts who were still together and still very much in love.  I could only hope for a life this great he thought as his mind then fluttered to Bryan.  Decades together and still holding hands and looking at each other with that fresh-in-love gaze.  “I hope you two have a great time here and to thank you for sharing your story with me, I’d love for you to let me treat you to one of our house specialty desserts.  Our chef Tia is the best around and I’m sure she can make you something wonderful.”  He escorted them to the café and introduced Tia asking her to make something special for the couple.  She came through magnificently by making a Knickerbocker Glory which delighted the old couple to no end.

               “We used to have these all the time here when we were younger!” the woman said in astonishment.

               “Well part of my research and in keeping some of the old alley alive was in their old menu.  Guess it’s a coincidence that I just happened to pick this one to keep!”  He grinned and, when they weren’t looking, winked at Tia over his shoulder.  Before he passed it over to them though, he worked his magic into the dish to fulfill a wish of theirs.  Both of them had terrible arthritis and had trouble moving very quickly.  Greg was able to remove it and turn back the clock a couple of years to help them feel as youthful as they were as teens… okay not QUITE that far back, but it was enough for them to enjoy the on-the-house free game of bowling!

               Once that was done, he continued to search for the source of that aura burst throughout the alley.  After a few more minutes of searching he found that the source was a lone young man who was trying his best to meld into the woodwork.  He seemed very shy and Greg could tell he both wanted to be there, and be far away from here.  It seemed that he was here by himself, or at least, he was alone at the moment and kept casting covetous looks at the people bowling.  He wanted to join, but was too shy to say so.  Well, time to get started he thought.  This one is going to be delicate though.

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Miss your stories, always intriguing. And this one is no exception. Bowling for Muscle is certainly a catchy title. I'm hoping that future chapters will give more background about Greg and his family's abilities--what "powers" do the rest of the family have?. And I would have liked to have a bit more background on Bryan. How and why did he come to the bar? What is his motivation for becoming a lawyer? Is he attracted to muscles in general or is he just attracted to Greg, etc.

Minor typo: in the 3rd paragraph: a SLIGHT big (bit?) of wiggle room.

Looking forward to reading the next chapter.

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I liked this story a lot, and I found particularly funny "Aunt Tia", not just cause it clearly comse as a diminutive for HesTIA, but also cause aunt in spanish is "tia", so that could translate as aunt aunt XD

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