Chapter 56 Part six/Ben’s new project
Ben was pleased that Harry hadn’t been totally disowned by his Mum. She was apparently in denial, which could go either way. This was worrying enough, but taken together with Harry talking of having a tattoo, spurred Ben into seeing Donald about his new video idea for he needed to keep Harry busy and out of harm’s way.
“We could do one of two things,” Ben explained to Donald, “We can shoot it in house or on location.”
“So what would you prefer me to do, build you a set in the studio or arrange for you to shoot it in an existing shop?” Donald asked.
“Well I was thinking maybe we could do something different. Let me show you what I mean.”
Ben then took Donald down to the basement, where he had put together a storyboard made up of photos showing Jimmy and Harry stripping and trying on the clothes the fashion houses stored down there.
“Well you’ve seen the story board, so why don’t we use the basement and the clothes we have here? Okay, it will mean putting in special lighting,” Ben said.
“Yes and maybe you should use both Jimmy and Harry as they look good together,” Donald agreed.
Harry was relieved and excited when Ben asked him to return to New York. He was finding living at home boring.
His sister Linda, like Peter, was getting ready to go to University having, unlike Harry, got good grades. She was not going to worry about how much debt she would have after graduation.
Linda was also spending a lot of nights away from home, making out with her boyfriend, Stephan. Leaving poor Harry alone to cope with his Mum, who he found was getting stranger by the day. She would totally ignore anything he said or did that implied he was gay.
One morning he started to openly read a gay magazine at breakfast hoping to provoke some reaction. However he had to laugh when all she said was, “Would you put that magazine down as it’s rude to read at the table.” Then she asked him to pass the butter without batting an eyelid, as if she hadn’t seen the picture on the front cover showing a full frontal view of a well-endowed, naked, young man.
Donald had done a good job of transforming part of the basement near the lift into a department store fashion island.
In that area the unopened boxes had been removed and there were now partitions with hanging rails and shelving all filled with clothes. There were also two full-length wall mirrors and a customer’s changing room.
The special overhead lighting Ben had requested had been installed. A camera dolly had been hired, together with two men to push and pull it.
To one side of the set Donald had sectioned off an area where he had put dressing rooms for the models. No way could Ben expect any of the boy models hired by the agency to strip in public as Jimmy and Harry had done.
Ben had to laugh when the two obviously gay men, who were pulling, the dolly almost backed into some chairs in surprise when they saw Jimmy and Harry doing their thing.
Ben was unsure which version Donald would like. He had shot one scene but used it to produce two videos. One was silent with captions, the other had a voice over. Both of them giving the potential customers information.
The scene consisted of Harry as the customer wanting to purchase a new casual outfit and Jimmy as the sales assistant.
Ben had used Harry stripping and dressing in the shop’s changing room with the curtains partly open to bring out the erotic side of the performance.
His aim had been to produce a Fifty’s style marketing video but with more sex appeal.
Donald when Ben showed him the videos liked the whole concept. He even found some of the so called acting quite amusing. He suggested, “Maybe you could get the boys to speak.”
“I don’t think that’s possible, as you know I’m giving the boys directions all the time as how to stand and move,” Ben replied.
“Well it was only a thought.” Donald suggested.
“Okay let me think about it.” Ben said as he left.