When Jax Bequette rolled to his side, the press of a naked body made him open his eyes. The lure of sleep was strong, but the desire to know where the hell he was outweighed the exhaustion.
“Hey, gorgeous.” A husky voice scraped across his consciousness. “You ready for round two?”
Jax practically leaped out of the bed when a small hand cupped his balls. He sat bolt upright and gazed wildly around the cluttered bedroom painted with gaudy tropical flowers. He was in a decidedly feminine bed layered with a frothy white lace duvet and a violent neon-green blanket. It looked like a scene from his personal hell, and he couldn’t figure out what he was doing there.
“You were an animal last night, lover.” The woman moved her hand from his balls to his cheek, forcing him to meet her gaze.
He didn’t recognize her. Well, not really. He remembered seeing
her in the bar at McKinloch’s last night. She’d been with a group of Mardi Gras revelers who had shown up late after the parade and partied until way past close. Still, her morning-after raccoon eyes and the rat’s nest of dyed blonde hair were damn scary.
Please, God, tell me we didn’t actually have sex.
His gaze landed on the nightstand. There was a new condom packet lying innocently on the corner. He could only hope that meant he hadn’t fucked the woman at all, not that he’d been stupid enough to fuck her without protection.
“Baby, are you all right?” She frowned. At least he thought she frowned. It was difficult to tell with the makeup.
“I’m sorry.” Jax cleared his throat to get rid of the rasp. “Did we have sex?”
She sighed and flopped back on the bed. “Not exactly. You were so sweet.” Another sigh, this one twice as dramatic as the first. “You were kind of drunk, so you told me we’d have to wait until this morning for the finale, but you got me off like three times with those magic fingers of yours.” She wiggled her own fingers, and he fought the urge to find the bathroom. She wasn’t done shredding his self-respect. “And oh my God, can you kiss! Baby, you’re a champion kisser.” She sidled up close and ran her nails over his bare chest. “And like I said, I’m ready for round two. I want that big ole cock deep inside my pussy so bad I can taste it.”
Odd choice of words.
Jax shook his head to clear his muddled thoughts and scrambled out of the bed. His feet hit the floor, and he started searching for his clothes. He shouldn’t be here.
“Hey, where are you going?”
“Sweetheart, I’m sorry, but I really can’t do this.” Jax gave her a tight smile. “I know it sounds bad, but you deserve better than to have a guy who’s really stuck on someone else.”
She looked sympathetic for all of two seconds before she started throwing whatever she could reach. The box of tissues didn’t make it across the room, so he took a second to search for his stuff. Then a stiletto heel bounced off the wall just above Jax’s head. He gave up locating his boxers, hiked his jeans over his hips, and grabbed his shoes before beating a hasty exit.
* * * *
Ossian’s Apartment—Above McKinloch’s Pub
Oz McKinloch grunted when the sunlight streaming through his bedroom window reached his closed eyelids. The angry headache throbbing behind his temples didn’t make for a happy morning. His mouth felt like he’d stuffed it full of cotton, and it tasted worse. He rolled to his back and blinked experimentally at the ceiling. His memories of the night before were a little fuzzy. The evidence suggested that he drank way too much. Beyond that he hadn’t a friggin’ clue what had happened.
Oz reached for a pillow and pulled it over his head to block out the light. Bits and pieces started to bubble up from wherever the Guinness stout had managed to drown them, and Oz wasn’t happy about it. He wasn’t the type to drown his sorrows in drink, but last night had been an exception.
What the hell are we doing?
Oz rubbed a hand over his scruffy beard and contemplated the need to shower, shave, and go to work. Today would be just one more in a long line of days that seemed to repeat themselves. Unless Jax Bequette showed up and turned Oz’s existence upside down with his subtle sexuality and the witty exchanges that had become the highlight of Oz’s life.
Jax and Oz were friends. That was what Oz continued to tell himself over and over again, even though there were some decidedly more
aspects to their relationship. In fact it had been Jax’s half-drunk decision to go home with some chick he’d met in the bar that had prodded Oz into overindulging with his supply of Guinness stout.
The creaking sound of a door had Oz shoving the pillow off his face. If one of his brothers had come upstairs to have a nice chat, Oz would happily snarl them back down to the bar. That was the problem with living above the family pub. Everyone figured they were welcome whenever they felt the urge to talk.
“You are such a dick.”
Jax’s rough voice accompanied the pounding in Oz’s head. Jax looked fresh from the shower. The curling ends of his dark hair were damp, and he brought the faint odor of sandalwood with him. He was wearing a pair of loose-fitting athletic pants and a snug T-shirt. Oz tried not to notice how his chest and arms strained against the black cotton. Jax was athletic and fit from his regular workouts at the soccer club he co-owned with his friend Brody Frost.
Completely unselfconscious, Jax flopped down on the bed. His weight pinned Oz’s legs to the mattress, but Oz couldn’t even try to make himself mind.
“What, no comment?” Jax turned and arched an eyebrow at Oz. “Or are you admitting that you are, in fact, a dick.”
Oz snorted, unable to stop himself from engaging in the easy banter. “Am I to understand that you blame me
choice to go home with that blonde?”
“When a guy is too hammered to realize he’s about to shoot himself in the face, he should be able to depend on his bro to bitch slap some sense into him.”
The subtext bubbling beneath their conversation made Oz take a deliberate mental step back. He hadn’t liked watching Jax flirt with the blonde. Oz didn’t particularly like Jax flirting with anyone. But it wasn’t for Oz to make those decisions. They were friends. Oz had to accept that his friend was probably going to chase tail and eventually marry it and pop out a few kids with it.
And I’ll get shoved into the background.
“I didn’t fuck her,” Jax told him.
The immense amount of relief that Oz felt in that knowledge was devastating to his self-assurance. He shouldn’t care what—or who—Jax fucked. They were friends
Jax rolled to his side and propped his weight on his elbow. “But there were half a dozen women just begging for a chance to put your
cock in their pussies.”
Oz scowled. This was an old discussion that never went anywhere, and he was tired of having it.
“In fact there are half a dozen women trying to get into your pants every fucking night.” Jax pushed the waistband of his athletic pants down over his hips. His cock sprang free and bounced against his belly. “Yet you never bring a single one upstairs because you and I both know you’d rather watch me than some woman you don’t give two shits about.”
Jax fisted his big cock in his right hand, and Oz couldn’t look away. Since the first time the two of them had reclined on the couch in Oz’s apartment and enjoyed the shared experience of masturbation, Oz hadn’t been able to look away. Their encounters had escalated just a little bit every time since.
Jax stroked his shaft with long, even motions that stretched the skin back from his circumcised head. He’d truly been gifted with beautiful equipment. The dusky skin of his cock was darker than the smooth olive complexion of the rest of his body, and the thickness was a perfect counterpoint to the massive length Oz had once grudgingly admitted was longer than his own.
A clear drop of precum dribbled from the hole at the tip, and Oz’s mouth watered. He knew that taste. He’d been trying to stop the gradual rise of what he could no longer deny was their sex life, but he was powerless to walk away. The taut muscles of Jax’s belly trembled as he increased the pace of his hand.
Jax’s hazy blue eyes met and held Oz’s gaze. “Come on, you smug bastard. I know you’re naked under that sheet and just as hard as I am.”
Oz didn’t acknowledge either truth despite the fact that he never slept in clothes and his cock was so full it was throbbing between his legs like an angry bear. He was older and more experienced. It fell to him to be the responsible one and end this—whatever this was.
Jax thrust his hips against the tight hold of his hand, and he grunted with the effort of holding back. “Look, you’ve given me a thousand reasons why you think this can’t last. Okay? But you haven’t given me one reason why we can’t do this right now.”
Oz had heard the same line every single time they’d been together since Christmas. And even though he knew it was just a line, it worked. Oz’s resistance began to crumble even as Jax started to pant.
“Please, I need your mouth. I’m fucking dying here.”
Oz hated his own weakness, but he couldn’t deny Jax’s plea. In fact he was starting to think he’d never be able to deny Jax, even when it became vital that he manage to do so.
Cursing his own frailty, Oz rolled over and shoved Jax onto his back. Oz yanked the soft material of Jax’s pants lower and swallowed his friend’s cock all the way to the back of his throat. Jax groaned and thrust into Oz’s mouth, his hands fisting against the bed.
Oz pulled his body free from the sheets and took hold of Jax’s hips. In this position Oz could use one knee to pin Jax’s chest to the bed. Forcing his lover to remain still, Oz bobbed his head forcefully up and down the long length of Jax’s shaft. Oz’s saliva soaked his friend’s balls as he continued his aggressive seduction. Oz felt powerful and in control until he felt Jax’s cool hands against his belly.
Jax circled the head of Oz’s penis with the flat of his tongue. Oz couldn’t resist. He thrust his dick into his lover’s waiting mouth and savored the warmth of Jax’s body. The sensation awakened the urge to explore another way to be inside of Jax. Oz fought back the desire to fuck his friend in the ass. He’d deliberately stayed away from that intimacy, but the more they were together, the harder it became to deny them both the final pleasure.
“You are so fucking hard,” Jax murmured. He used his lips to tease Oz before nipping the puckered frenulum and making Oz grunt with the need to fuck. “I’m going to swallow you whole, and you’re going to come in my throat. I fucking need it, and you’re going to give it to me.”
Oz wondered when he was going to have to admit to himself and to Jax that he was lost. There was nothing in life that would ever compare to being with this man. Not in Oz’s past, and certainly not in his future.