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“Heart of Iron”, AndreaFollow up to “Heart of Flesh – Andrea – Part 1,2,3”The incredible story of Andrea, and his journey from being just a regular guy to an internationally renowned model. Among loves, irrepressible passions, new and rediscovered friendships, Andrea leaves Italy for amazing cities like New York, Los Angeles, London, Hong Kong, and Tokyo. There he discovers their transgressive nightlife.The "Beyond the Flesh" saga will transport you into the world of high fashion, luxury hotels, and stunning villas. All in the company of regular guys like Andrea, the ambiguous, larger than life Count Dorian Dal Borgo, gorgeous, sensual women like Nicolle, and teenage girls who follow their dreams, like Susanna. Go "beyond the flesh" and feel your heart start to beat. And this is only the beginning.*Part 4 Andrea’s life goes on, divided between university and being “Key”, a famous model. Night events in clubs and a trip to London make him realize just how important Ian has become to him: his agent, but also his friend and mentor.After London, Andrea returns to Milan and meets Sara, who is at the same school as his sister. She’s gorgeous and a big fan of Key. They feel great physical attraction for each other, and lose themselves in a new dimension of pleasure. Without love, though. Because Andrea’s heart still beats for Susanna.*"Heart of flesh BOX" is already available as a single edition ebook and paperback consisting of "Andrea parts 1+2+3".*Publications:Heart of Flesh - BOX - Beyond the Flesh Saga - Book 1Heart of Flesh - Andrea part 1 FREE!Heart of Flesh - Andrea part 2 Heart of Flesh - Andrea part 3*Heart of Iron - BOX - Beyond the Flesh Saga - Book 2 (Soon)Heart of Iron - Andrea part 4Heart of Iron - Andrea part 5 (soon)
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HEART OF IRON
Important notes before reading
Web and Social
Where is my mind? (The Pixies)
Chapter 1 - Flap in the head
Chapter 2 - Small goldfish in the ocean
Chapter 3 - Zabaglione is difficult to digest
Chapter 4 - Yellow Beetle to Notting Hill
Chapter 5 - Visual words
Chapter 6 - A click that lights up memories
Chapter 7 - Oyster in the buffet
Chapter 8 - Sonnet 20
Chapter 9 - Kittens don’t like people shouting
Chapter 10 - Key’s mask
Chapter 11 - The little fish and the whale
Chapter 12 - New and interrupted roads
Chapter 13 - Kisses that can (not) be bought
Andrea – Part 4
by Key GenIUS
“ Heart of Iron Andrea, part 4” copyright ©2018
English translation by Cristina Tognolin, Monica Trentin and Isabel Ungaro
Editor English version: Mark Warburton
Italian original edition “Cuore di ferro” ©2014
“ Heart of Iron” is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.
The novel contains explicit sex scenes and portrays adult characters taking drugs, drinking alcohol, and smoking. These scenes only want to give truthfulness to the story, emphasizing the drama and sense of confusion of its characters.
In no way do we wish to promote the use or abuse of these substances.
Don’t copy this behavior.
We disassociate ourselves from any present or future erroneous exploitation that could be caused by the text, extrapolating parts of the content without taking into account the conceptualization and recounted events.
Sex scenes have been included without the use of a condom only because we want to show the emotional state of despair of the characters. Take precautions when having sex. Always use a condom.
eMail: [email protected]
Facebook Author (Ian Key GenIUS):
Fan Page Saga (Facebook):
HEART OF IRON
Andrea – Part 4
By Key GenIUS
Editor English version Mark Warburton
With your feet in the air and your head on the ground
Try this trick and spin it, yeah
Your head will collapse
But there's nothing in it
And you'll ask yourself…
Where is my mind?
Andrea doesn’t have his feet in the air and his head cracked open on the ground, but he wonders where is my mind while looking out of the window of Count Dorian Agency’s black car.
It’s past midnight, but the night hasn’t yet begun for he and Maicol.
With The Pixies on his iPod, singing about a psycho-emotive confusion like his, he touches his leg, brushing the, now familiar, Versace fabric; warm honey, gray trousers brush his skin like the hands of an attentive lover.
As Susanna had been…
At least, so he had thought, before she dumped him on New Year’s Eve. Then he realized that even love can be faked. It just takes one of the two to be lost in the other and it’s done.
After spending the whole of January cursing himself and February beating himself up, a strange apathy has taken over in March. One reason could be that the sky has been gray ever since Ian left at the beginning of the month.
Thanks to Ian, family, and his new friends at the agency, Andrea hasn’t got into any particular messes and has concentrated on study and work. But he no longer feels like doing anything unless really necessary. He eats and sleeps, studies and works, because he has to.
Everything seems to have lost its appeal. But Ian has said that it’s just a phase.
It’s like when you take down the decorations at the end of the Christmas holidays. The house suddenly looks bare and sad. “In reality, it’s just returned to normal. It was the lights and colors that made it festive,” Ian explained. “And your days will come back too. You just have to give yourself time and find your balance again.”
Andrea is repeating it to himself again when his phone vibrates. He pulls it from the back pocket of his tight trousers with elastic around the ankles. They look like pajamas, but are in fashion. But he’s puzzled by the suspenders that he was obliged to wear over his white top. More than thirty people at the agency have already pulled them; unfortunately, the flap against his chest appears to be an offering that all those who see him are happy to leave.
He sees Ian’s photo flashing. In the picture, Ian’s wearing a black fleece, hood down, and is smiling spontaneously, captured leaving a movie theatre on one of their nights out.
Andrea quickly takes off his headphones and answers the video call. Another world, full of lights and sounds, appears in the palm of his hand.
“ Hi Ian!” he shouts with a sudden burst of good humor, holding the smartphone up for the camera. “How-”
Ian coughs and gestures him to wait as the city’s car horns and people’s voices echo around.
Judging by the wind blowing Ian’s hair flat, as though on a motorbike and with no helmet, it must be freezing cold in New York. His scarf is still around his neck, but he’s wearing it out of etiquette rather than as someone who has caught bronchitis and should be resting.
Andrea clenches his jaw, worried again, as Maicol slides along the car seat to get closer and then shakes his head.
“ He doesn’t seem any better,” mutters Maicol, looking at the screen.
“ No…” says Andrea.
“ How’s it going lads?” asks Ian with a hoarse voice and hand to his throat, so pale that he stands out more than the lights behind him. The unmistakable Times Square, the Manhattan intersection famous all around the world for its bright billboards, dazzles and reverberates the kaleidoscopic glares inside the cars.
“ How are you?” asks Andrea. “Are you taking the antibiotics? And the syrup?”
Walking quickly, Ian lifts his eyes to the night sky and nods, as the enormous Disney Store sign turns his skin yellow.
“ So why do you still have so much catarrh?”
Ian shrugs. “You don’t get better just like that,” he replies, raising his eyebrows.
Andrea gets the subtle hint. “Take your medicine and wrap up more!”
“ Ok future doctor. Anything else?” Ian smiles, as the blue Forever 21 sign goes by and then makes way for the crystalline Swarovsky.
“ The same thing I’ve been telling you for a week: stay in bed and relax for a few days.”
Ian shakes his head. “That’s one of the few luxuries that I can’t afford,” he jokes, and then stops still, attacked by another coughing bout.
Christian’s blonde head suddenly appears in the screen, his deep blue gaze piercing even from afar.
Why do I piss him off so much? Andrea wonders every time that Christian gives him such a bad look.
Chris is one of Ian’s three secretaries, responsible for the United States just as Marta is for Europe. Andrea met him for the first time when he went to sign his contract at the agency, and is glad to be Italian every time that he sees him. He must have offended him in another life since he just can’t understand his barely hidden bitterness towards him.
Ian moves his head away a little, looking down to the side, visibly uncomfortable, as Christian adjusts his scarf. Then Christian whispers something and Ian nods. “Have you arrived at the Ocean?” Ian struggles to ask.
“ Nearly,” answers Andrea.
“ Don’t worry. BigMaicol will look after little Blobby.”
“ Hey, stop it!” snaps Andrea, turning his head, as Ian starts up with a mix of laughing and coughing.
After what happened with Susanna, Marta said that Andrea had the air of someone in need of cuddling, and gave him the nickname “blonde teddy bear”. Maicol heard it and turned it into “blondy bear”, and from there came “Blobby”. An unbearable nickname, and Ian bursts out laughing, as though it was the first time, every time he hears it.
“ Let me know how it goes. It’s important,” says Ian, face now red thanks to the Planet Hollywood sign above his head. “I’m going now. Call me if there are any problems.”
“ Ok…” Andrea nods, smiling gloomily.
“ Bye. Take care of yourself,” says Maicol, nodding goodbye, and Ian smiles. Then he throws a quick glance just for Andrea, managing to shake him.
He hears Ian’s voice encouraging him: “Come on Andrea!”
And the call ends.
The windy New York evening, with its fluorescent lights and din of the traffic, disappears and everything is quiet and dark again.
Andrea puts the smartphone back in his pocket. The sun had returned for a moment, ripping apartthe heavy cloak that covers him.For a moment, emotional apathy and the flap of the suspenders sounding in his head had taken a break.
Uuugh… uuugh… Stop! The Pixies sing.
Andrea strokes the dark leather mask on his face.
Key is about to come into play, and Andrea goes to sit on a bench.
He concentrates on the event that is about to start. Cheering himself up, he thinks about how the sun is always there even when he can’t see it. Just like his friend Ian, who calls him from wherever he is, always finding a moment for him, so he doesn’t feel alone even when an ocean separates them.
The Ocean is a club with one large room. An enormous chandelier with spherical crystal drops seems to float above the heads of the crowd. They sway to the sound of a new remix of the song Bittersweet Symphony by The Verve.
The bar counter is round and positioned in the center, and the dance floor is a tongue that licks it. Small, white couches and low tables are ripples in the dark blue.
Lights swirling on the walls and led projected waves create a feel of calm frenzy in the air.
“ Quiet night,” says Andrea, putting his hands in his pockets. He has left his jacket and personal items, apart from his phone, in the cloakroom.
“ It’s still early,” answers Maicol, flaunting a top, white, lace boxers, and black combat boots, for the occasion. He can wear the most extravagant Versace clothes with a naturalness that only a true professional model possesses. “Let’s go to the bar.”
They walk down the stairs and Andrea watches Maicol move forward through the guests, his refined, statuesque walk making him emerge like the God Neptune. His blonde hair stands out in the glare and turning to look for Andrea, his light eyes look like flashes of lightning taking aim at him. He gestures Andrea to join him, but is surrounded by fans, bouncing around him like small fish, before Andrea even gets down the first step.
Maicol greets them all with the usual mischievous smile that makes them blush.
When Andrea arrives, they clap their hands, greeting him like an old friend and giving him lots of kisses on the cheeks.It’s a conflicting emotion, being popular as Key, but, at the same time, an unknown as Andrea. He feels the affection of all these girls envelop him, but it’s like a fleeting gust of warm air.
“ Hi Key,” says one.
“ You’re gorgeous, Key,” another tells him…
The phone and camera flashes start up. As do the flaps of his suspenders that no-one can go without, a real torture for his painful nipples that are now shouting: ‘fucking suspenders!’
But he keeps smiling throughout, and entertains the guests, making them laugh; he has a soft drink, disguised as something alcoholic, with some of them. Listening with interest to important news, such as celebrity couples in gossip magazines splitting up, he feigns amazement and disappointment as though it was real news.
He dances a while, but without letting himself go,given that he must get all those around him to dance.
Over an hour goes by.
Resting his hands on the hips of the umpteenth stranger, who gazes at him dreamily and longs for something more, Andrea can only think about his heart again. Locked with an imaginary padlock, protected until it recovers from the wounds inflicted by Susanna.
His heart is fenced in by a hot iron plate, expanding and shrinking out of the blue, beyond his control. It can happen in an instant: a song, a photo, an image, an advert, a dress… the henna scent of this girl’s hair that takes him straight back to Susanna.
She used henna too.
And his heart beats, pounding against the burning iron.
He slides his hand around the girl’s waist and pulls her a little closer, closes his eyes, and puts his face to her perfumed hair.
He smells her and lifts his hand to her neck as she strokes his chest.
He stops still and leans his head on her neck. She pants and whispers: “Key…”.
Andrea takes a step back and looks her in the face, thinking how easy it would be to take her into a corner and sink into that soft, pearly mouth, half open from the gasps of fantasies for him. Or rather, for Key.
It would be so simple, and with no consequences, precisely because Key doesn’t exist. Nobody expects a ‘happy ever after’. No-one has ever cared about the day after the end of a fairy tale. And Key is a fairy tale. There is only the raw emotion of the moment, no tomorrow.
Breathing heavily, he suddenly becomes serious. Ian had been categorical: “work requires the maximum professionalism precisely because of the unusual situations you may find yourself in”.
Key sparks many fantasies, above all in the young, and so must be safeguarded for as long as possible.
Key can’t get tarnished. Key must remain a catalyst of dreams.
I can’t betray all these girls’ dreams…
There are cameras everywhere on nights like this, and just one photo on Facebook would be enough to ruin his reputation. So, when she starts to move closer and look for a kiss, Andrea moves away a little and takes her hand for a gallant kiss. She smiles and walks away, struggling though.
He sees more flashes, capturing him during that simple gesture, and the tags on his profile will be clogging up. His popularity has grown dramatically in just a few months and soon there will be the first official photos. But he hadn’t realized that the burden of the character Key would be so heavy.
He starts heading to the bar, but another dozen hands flap his suspenders on route. So, he decides on a break and goes straight to the restroom. The men’s in on the left of the entrance stairs and luckily there’s no line. He pushes the door open and it closes behind him again, deadening the music.
Clean and well kept, the sinks are on one side, and a single mirror reflects the high bowl lampson the ceiling. The floor is shiny, cream colored, as are the toilet doors, all open apart from a couple with the red engaged sign.
Andrea walks over to a sink and stands in front of the mirror. His fair hair is disheveled as per the “controlled chaos” effect, as Ian calls it.And the black mask blends in with his expression, grey because of the cloudy weather.
He pulls off the suspenders, sliding them off with two shakes of his shoulders, and leaves them hanging down by his hips. A toilet flushes, the door opens, and an anorexic lad, apparently sponsoring Calvin Klein, approaches; a white top with the black letters CK, buckle, and shiny, black, low waist pants that leave the branded boxer’s elastic visible. Dark hair stuck to his forehead, he gives Andrea a serious look. Then he suddenly jumps and shouts: “Hey! Key! Photo, photo!”
The lad struggles to pull his phone from his pants, but they quickly take a couple of snaps and he walks away without saying another word. It’s not the first time that it has happened. Some have a morbid curiosity to find out everything about Key while others just want to add him to their Facebook page and gnaw away at the envy of their fake virtual friends.
Just as well.
Andrea sighs, pulls up his white top, and looks at his nipples, irritated and hurting like hell.
“ Look at them! Damn suspenders…,” he hisses through clenched teeth, touching the red balls, really sensitive now. There are no paper tissues so he gets some toilet paper, walks back to the sink, and wets it. Holding his top up under his chin, moaning, and eyelids lowering, with both hands he brings a moment of cool to the torture.
Standing still, enjoying the moment, he hears a different type of moan rise from the locked toilet;even if held back, the hyperbole of ecstasy reached is full of meaning.
It’s no surprise that, even in a trendy club like this, some allow themselves a quick one in the toilets. And, more importantly, it doesn’t take anything away from his moment of relief. He must put the suspenders back on very soon, as his outfit requires.
He hears the faint sound of two male voices chatting, and the door opens.
Andrea turns his gaze to the sink, not wanting to be intrusive, and hears sniggering. Quick steps accompany a thin silhouette that enters the mirror’s reflection and leaves without turning around. Another flush of the toilet and a dark, athletic shadow with broad shoulders and narrow hips approaches.
The guy has curly, dark hair and is holding a jacket in his hand. He’s wearing a gray silk shirt, sleeves rolled up, and a black tie, tucked into the gap between the buttons. As he bends down to drink from the tap, tufts of hair cover most of his profile, so Andrea can’t really see his face.
Then he lifts his chest, puts the jacket on the porcelain, and throws his hands under the water. Andrea sees a ring that he remembers well, and then jumps when the guy lifts his face and shakes his head a couple of times.
That face and pronounced jaw are familiar. And when Andrea meets those dark brown eyes, he’s in no doubt that it’s Giorgio, his ex-best friend.
Giorgio has a leaner physique and longer hair now, but his face is the same. So, too, is the aggressive look, intensifying when he realizes that Andrea is staring at him.
“ What are you looking at, Batman?” Giorgio snaps, visibly annoyed.
Andrea freezes, looking an idiot with two pieces of wet toilet paper stuck to his nipples. He hasn’t seen Giorgio since his parents died that Sunday in June. And Giorgio hasn’t been in touch for months, apart from a few emails and phone calls, the last being at Christmas. He’s apparently working a lot and having problems with Sabrina; maybe their relationship has broken down, not being able to use Andrea as an excuse for his fun.
What if he recognizes me?
“ I know who you are,” says Giorgio, putting soap on his hands. “You’re Dorian’s new guy, right?”
Andrea nods, but says nothing. His voice could give him away.
“ Has the Tuscan salami dried your tongue?” Giorgio sniggers, shaking the water from his hands and going to the dryer on the wall. As the hot air does its duty, he goes on staring at Andrea sideways and raises an eyebrow. “So?”
Andrea swallows. Seeing Giorgio again like this has really thrown him. “I’m not feeling well,” he says in a whisper, hoping not to sound too stupid, though it’s better than being recognized.
Giorgio laughs and, for a moment, Andrea sees his old childhood friend again.
“ You speak like Batman, too.” Giorgio goes back to the sink, rolls up his sleeves and unbuttons the cuffs. “What’s wrong?” He moves closer and grabs Andrea’s wrists. “Let me have a look,” he says, pointing at Andrea’s chest with a quick nod of the head.
Andrea shakes his head, but Giorgio starts pulling his arms apart. Beaten by his strength, Andrea takes a few steps back and ends up with his shoulders and hands against the wall.
“ You should have a bodyguard,” says Giorgio, enjoying his victory and eyeing only Andrea’s exposed flesh.
Andrea squeezes the wet toilet papers in his fists. “Let go of me!” he says through clenched teeth, forcing himself to keep that different voice. He fights back and manages to free his back from Giorgio’s right hand for a moment. But Giorgio pushes him again, with no apparent effort.
“ Does Dorian bite you or use pliers?” asks Giorgio, lifting his head, and moving closer, his body pressing against Andrea.
“ What the fuck are you doing?” Andrea shouts angrily.
Giorgio bites his lip and looks at him with the expression that Andrea used to see every time Giorgio was zeroing in on a girl; mouth twisted, top lip curled.
Andrea saw it many times, but Giorgio had never worn it for him.
“ Does Dorian have an exclusive on you?”
“ No!” Andrea snaps suddenly, shaking his head. He’s had enough. “I don’t suck dicks!” he says, trying to free himself. But Giorgio turns serious in an instant, blocks Andrea against the wall and spreads out his arms. He looks at Andrea’s chest again and then back at his bewildered face.
“ I’ll kill you!”
Giorgio’s look intensifies and then he suddenly lets go, tilting his head to one side while stepping back slowly to by the dryer on the opposite wall.
A tense silence falls.
Andrea pulls his top down, feeling bitter beyond words and unnaturally embarrassed in a way that had never existed between them.
Giorgio has managed to disappointment him once again. There had been a glimmer of hope of salvaging their friendship, but now it has gone.
“ What’s going on?” asks Maicol, suddenly walking into the restroom. “Problems, Key?”
Giorgio leans his hands against the ceramic sink and, head down, takes a deep breath.
Andrea shakes his head. “Everything’s fine.” He tosses the wet balls onto the floor as Giorgio turns on the tap, throws water at his face, and launches a final glance at Andrea via the reflection.
Andrea holds the look for a moment before putting the detested suspenders back on, bothering his skin, just like the doubt that Giorgio has recognized him.
It may well be so, and he now also knows that Giorgio doesn’t only dress up as though in his favorite musical; his ex-best friend is a fully-fledged bisexual and Andrea can’t help but wonder how long he has been. Giorgio had lied to him. He had hidden the truth.
Andrea’s skin is on fire; maybe there is an answer. But it’s shocking, his guts squirming just at the thought.
Maicol looks at Andrea, worried. “Are you ok?”
“ I’m just going out for a cigarette,” he answers, rubbing his stomach.
“ I’ll come with you.” Maicol puts a hand on his shoulder and, as the fresh air gets nearer, Andrea’s mind wanders into an ocean of disconcerting questions about the past. He sees everything that he and Giorgio did together as friends in a different light now. And he’s upset. Disgusted.
Giorgio has just looked at his body as if recognizing it in some way. As though having reference points.
Andrea couldn’t do that; if he closes his eyes, he doesn’t remember Giorgio so well. Thinking about it, only Susanna’s body re-emerges in detail. Only hers, out of all the girls that he has been with.
He wipes his mouth, dry now.
How did I not realize?
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