Hell & high water, p.21
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       Hell & High Water, p.21

         Part #1 of THIRDS series by Charlie Cochet

  Sloane averted his gaze, his jaw muscles tightening. “I don’t. And I won’t either. I’m saying you don’t need to feel bad about it. I don’t. It was a long time ago. I was young, on my own, and scared. It’s all I had left. At least I thought so. I know now how wrong I was.” Dex took his hand and turned it over, his thumb stroking Sloane’s wrist and the barely visible line. The THIRDS had done a hell of a job stitching him back together. Then again, Sloane had been naïve and cut in the wrong direction. The doctors had told him he’d been lucky. Biting down on his bottom lip, Dex took Sloane’s other hand and turned it over, cursing under his breath. Sloane pulled it away.

  “Like I said. It was a long time ago. Things were different. I was different. Don’t get sentimental on me now, Daley,” he teased, wondering why he hadn’t pulled his left hand away. Dex tenderly took his wrist and put it to his lips, delivering a soft kiss and leaving Sloane with his heart in his throat.

  Sloane leaned in and hesitantly put his lips to Dex’s. His mouth was warm, his lips parting, inviting Sloane in. Despite knowing he shouldn’t, Sloane slipped his tongue inside Dex’s mouth, their tongues exploring and tasting. It wasn’t hurried or intense like the first time they’d kissed in the garage. Sloane’s hand slipped behind Dex’s head, gingerly pulling him closer, his fingers in Dex’s hair. He couldn’t say how long the kiss went on, only that it had felt good.

  He pulled back enough to rest his head against Dex’s. Why did he keep doing this? He had to stop. It wasn’t fair to either of them, especially Dex. He stood and went to the kitchen for a bottle of water, aware of Dex watching him. To Sloane’s surprise and relief, Dex didn’t say anything. He didn’t bring it up later either. In fact, he carried on as if nothing had happened. Any other guy would have demanded to know what was going on or would have told Sloane to go to hell ages ago. Not Dex. Why?

  The rest of the day went far better than Sloane expected. He’d anticipated things to be awkward between them, but Dex wouldn’t allow it. His meds still had him feeling groggy, but he seemed determined to be upbeat about everything, though there was plenty of bitching and moaning in between. They watched TV and DVDs together. Dex had Sloane in tears of laughter during certain scenes where Dex provided colorful commentary. During the good parts, Dex was engrossed. Sloane alternated between cooking and ordering in food. He’d called Ash while Dex was asleep and had him bring over extra clothes and supplies.

  By the end of the week, Dex was feeling better, and he’d stopped bitching. He was finding it easier to move around, though he was still sore as hell. Cael had come by as often as he could to check up on his big brother, bringing him the junk food Dex would request through text, junk food Sloane would refuse to buy. Like gummy bears and those damn Cheesy Doodles.

  Cael would stick around for a while, and Sloane admitted he enjoyed hanging around the brothers, listening to all the funny stories from their childhood. He loved hearing their stories. He didn’t miss his childhood. It was hard to miss something he’d never had.

  Sloane crashed on the couch every day that week. Although the temperature was steadily dropping as they got into November, the heating in Dex’s apartment kept him comfortably warm. Dex had argued it was stupid when there was a king-size bed upstairs, but Sloane remained unmoved on the matter. There was no damn way he was going to share a bed with Dex. He didn’t trust either of them not to do something they’d regret, especially since Sloane was finding it difficult resisting temptation, and it was getting worse by the day.

  It had started with little things. A hand to the shoulder or upper arm, sitting next to Dex on the couch when Dex was well enough to sit up, letting Dex lean against him, his head on Sloane’s shoulder. He’d pat Dex’s knee then leave his hand there while they watched TV. Over the weekend, he’d placed a hand to Dex’s lower back as Dex washed their dishes after dinner. At the beginning of the second week, Dex had shivered after coming downstairs from his shower, and when he sat on the couch next to Sloane, he’d put his arm around Dex and rubbed his arm to get him warm. Dex never initiated any contact between them. He waited for Sloane to make a move then followed up on it, as if he knew Sloane would balk otherwise. It was scary how well Dex was coming to know him. More frightening was how much comfort he felt being around Dex.

  Today they’d ordered an extra nice dinner to celebrate Maddock giving Dex the all clear that morning. Dex would be back at work the next day. He was still sore, and Maddock made Dex promise he would take things slow, though Sloane was sure Dex would have agreed to almost anything to get back to work. They were moving around the kitchen, clearing up the counter and placing the dishes in the sink when Dex turned to say something and ran into Sloane.

  “Oh, damn. I’m sorry.”

  “No, it was my fault,” Sloane replied, reaching around Dex to drop the last of the cutlery in the sink. “Wasn’t looking where I was going.”

  “Too busy staring at my ass, huh?”

  Sloane gave a snort. “Yeah, it’s kind of hard to miss.”

  “Please. You know you want it,” Dex teased.

  Sloane should have followed up the comment with a smart-ass remark, instead, his face went beet red, and he let out a nervous laugh. Dex tilted his head to one side, smiling at him.

  “Are you blushing?”

  “No.” Sloane wiped down the counter, trying to keep out the invading images of Dex’s bare ass. Shit. “I need to go.”

  “Oh, okay.”

  Sloane faced Dex, feeling like an asshole for putting that disappointed look on his face. “I’m sorry. I’m not trying to be rude. The food was great and spending time with you… I really liked it. I just….”

  “Don’t want to do something you’ll regret? I understand.”

  Sloane blinked at him, surprised by Dex’s intuitiveness.

  “Despite the way I act sometimes, I’m not really an ass. I don’t want to do anything that would make things uncomfortable between us. I kind of like having you around.”


  “Yeah.” Dex absently ran a hand through his hair. The gesture coupled with the bashful smile on his face pulled at Sloane’s heartstrings. It was the first time he was seeing this side of Dex, and he found it absolutely endearing. Then Dex bit down on his bottom lip, and it stirred something else in Sloane. He grabbed the back of Dex’s neck and pulled him against him, bringing their mouths and bodies together. After Dex’s surprise wore off, he threw his arms around Sloane’s neck, pressing his body up against Sloane’s, his evident erection digging into Sloane’s leg as a deep rumble rose through his chest and came out as a long groan. He kissed Dex hungrily, one hand sliding down between them to cup Dex’s erection and rub him through his jeans, his other hand slipping into the back of Dex’s waistband to grip one plump, round ass cheek.

  “Oh God,” Dex moaned, moving his hips and thrusting into Sloane’s hand. “Fuck, I want you so bad.”

  With the last of his resolve snapping, Sloane pulled his hands free to take Dex’s shirt and pull it up over his head, dropping it to the kitchen floor before unbuttoning Dex’s fly, his lips kissing, licking, and nipping along Dex’s neck down to his shoulder where he bit down gently, causing Dex to shiver in the sweetest way. With a low growl, Sloane grabbed Dex and lifted him, chuckling at the surprised yelp Dex let out. His arms locked around Sloane’s neck as he carried Dex to the counter and set him down.

  “Dude, we eat on here.”

  “Shut up.” Sloane returned his mouth to Dex’s, kissing him as he tugged Dex’s jeans down his legs, followed by his boxer-briefs. He stopped long enough to look down at Dex’s gorgeous cock.

  “I can get you a framed painting if you like. Or you could suck it.”

  Sloane’s gaze traveled up that beautifully flushed body sporting a rainbow of healing bruises, to Dex’s cheeky smile, his pale blue eyes filled with mischief. The bruising on his face had mostly subsided, and once again, Sloane could feel the full effect of Dex’s charm. How had Sloane not noticed the l
ittle lines that formed at the corners of his eyes when he smiled? Dex arched an eyebrow at him before he winked down at his dick.

  “Don’t worry, fella. He needs a minute to take in all the awesome.”

  “How about I show you what you need.” Sloane pushed Dex onto his back. He ran a hand down Dex’s smooth chest, down his abs, until he got his hand wrapped around Dex’s cock and swallowed him down until the tip touched the back of his throat.

  “Fuck!” Dex closed his eyes and let his head fall back, his hands flattened against the counter’s smooth surface while Sloane sucked him off. He moved slowly, his eyes open and on Dex. Sloane relished the taste of him in his mouth, the sounds coming from him, the way he arched his back up off the counter. Sloane pulled back, his tongue circling the tip then pressing down into the slit, making Dex gasp. Watching the need wash over Dex’s face, hearing his heavy breaths and soft cursing, made Sloane want to torture Dex even more, to make him writhe with need until he was begging. He lapped up the precome before picking up his pace, his tongue pressing against the base.

  “Come on, man,” Dex pleaded breathlessly.

  Sloane grabbed Dex’s hips, tugged him forward and slung his smaller partner over his shoulder, laughing at the surprised yelp he let out. After a moment of flailing, Dex stilled. “This is messed up.”

  “Be quiet.” Sloane slapped Dex’s bare ass, the sound delicious.

  “Ooh, kinky.”

  Sloane hurried up the stairs, careful not to run Dex into any walls. He made it to the bedroom and dropped Dex onto the king-size bed. He’d been in Dex’s bedroom several times when Dex had needed help getting upstairs. The bedroom was spacious, tastefully decorated like the rest of the house with a thick carpet in a chocolaty hue matching the curtains of the two large windows on the right side of the room, and the tall headboard of the large bed, a stark contrast against white walls. There were dark nightstands to each side of the bed, each with a lamp, and also a matching dresser. Across from the bed was a long closet and to the right of that, the bathroom. But the room’s best feature, in his opinion, was the naked guy in the center of the bed trembling with need for him. Sloane crawled over Dex and finished removing his pants and underwear, kissing and nipping as he went along.

  “Supplies?” Sloane asked, hitting the mute button on the warning bells in his head. He was too lost in Dex, the sight of him, his scent, his body.


  Sloane finished removing all of Dex’s clothes before rummaging through the nightstand and tossed a bottle of lube and a condom on the bed. He walked around to the foot of the bed, and with a wicked smile on his face, he pulled his shirt off and tossed it to one side. Dex propped on his elbows and licked his bottom lip as he watched Sloane undress. The socks came next, followed by his jeans and boxer-briefs. He put his hands on his hips. “Like what you see?”

  Dex nodded. “Though the question you should be asking is top or bottom?”

  A fierce heat spread up from his toes through his whole body. Damn, just when he thought he couldn’t get any harder. “Top or bottom?”

  Dex considered it then rolled onto his stomach. He looked at Sloane over his shoulder. “Fuck me.”

  “Shit.” Sloane crawled over him and gently took hold of Dex’s face to capture his lips with his own, his tongue forcing Dex’s lips open. He kissed him hungrily before sitting back on his heels, his hands on Dex’s ass cheeks kneading them, spreading them apart. Fuck, he was hot. Sloane got off the bed, grabbed Dex’s ankles and pulled him until his ass was hanging off the edge. Dex let out a grunt, his fingers grabbing the edges of the duvet underneath him, his head pressing into the mattress as Sloane got on his knees. He spread Dex and let out a groan when Dex gasped at the feel of Sloane’s tongue in him.

  “Oh fuck,” Dex moaned, his fingers curling and uncurling. He slipped a hand underneath himself, his ass coming up slightly as he stroked himself. Sloane nipped at Dex with teeth and Dex let out a long shuddering breath, his entire body shivering. Sloane’s fingernails dug into Dex’s ass cheeks as he licked, laved, and tongued Dex’s hole.


  Answering Dex’s soft plea, Sloane got up and gave him a tap on his flank so he’d move up. Dex silently shifted onto the bed, getting on his hands and knees, his gaze on Sloane as Sloane tore the condom packet open and passed it to him.

  “Put it on me.”

  Dex made a choking noise before sitting up and doing a cute shimmy over to him. He rolled the condom onto Sloane, his hand squeezing Sloane’s cock on the way down and drawing a deep groan from him. Sloane nodded toward the lube, and Dex snatched up the bottle, squirting some onto his hand and palming Sloane’s cock again, his lustful gaze on Sloane as he stroked him. When it was getting to be too much, Sloane grabbed his wrist and turned him, pushing him gently back onto his hands and knees. Sloane stroked his achingly hard dick a couple of times before taking the lube and squirting some between Dex’s ass cheeks, then stretched him with his fingers for a few agonizing moments. When Sloane couldn’t take Dex’s moaning or the way he pushed back onto Sloane’s fingers any longer, he pressed the head of his cock against Dex’s hole. He moved in slowly, reminding himself of Dex’s injuries. It was torture, but he refused to hurt Dex.

  “Come on, Sloane. You’re not going to break me.” Dex pulled away and impaled himself the rest of the way in, making them both cry out. Sloane doubled over Dex’s back, their heads pressed together.

  “For fuck’s sake, Dex. I don’t want to hurt you.” Sloane shut his eyes for a moment to steady himself.

  “Just fuck me already.”

  “Okay.” Sloane adjusted his position, kneeling behind Dex and grabbing his hips. He slammed Dex back against him as he thrust forward. Dex let out a surprised yelp, fueling Sloane’s desire to make Dex cry out again and again. He pounded into Dex in earnest, the bed moving beneath them. He couldn’t deny how goddamn amazing it was to be inside Dex, how much he was enjoying fucking him senseless.

  He stopped and pulled out to flip Dex onto his back. After shoving a pillow under Dex’s lower back, Sloane bent to kiss him, one hand wrapping around Dex’s cock while he lined himself up with the other and pushed into him, drawing another surprised gasp from him. Sloane pulled his mouth away from Dex’s as he fucked him and jerked him off.

  “Fuck, I love hearing you make those noises.”

  Dex shivered beneath him, and Sloane grinned. Now that he had managed to shut Dex up, all he wanted was to hear him, hear those little moans of pleasure, his gasps, his cursing as Sloane slowed down then sped up. He slowly pulled out before snapping his hips, thrusting as deep as he could each time. Shifting his position slightly, he pulled nearly all the way out before thrusting in deep. Dex cried out when Sloane hit the right spot.

  “Oh fuck!”

  “That’s it,” Sloane purred, leaning forward. He released his hold on Dex’s cock and moved Dex’s hand so he could take over. “Jesus.” The sight of Dex jacking off was almost enough to send him over the edge. He pulled back enough to drape Dex’s legs over his shoulders and wrapped his arms around them, his groin slapping against Dex’s ass as he rotated his hips and did his best to keep hitting Dex’s prostate. Dex’s scrunched up brow was beaded with sweat, his mouth open with the most delicious sounds coming out of it. Sloane leaned in, his weight forcing him deep inside Dex. He gritted his teeth as he moved faster, his thrusts short but hard. “Oh, fuck. Dex….”

  Dex nodded frantically. “Yes.”

  Sloane’s hips lost all their rhythm, his breath coming out ragged and the sweat dripping down his back as he lost control. His release built up and slammed into him, a feral growl rising through him as he spilled inside the condom. Dex cried out, his release causing his body to tighten around Sloane and draw out Sloane’s orgasm. His whole body shook, and then he lay down on top of Dex, careful not to crush him under his weight. He knew he should move, but the overwhelming peace that washed over him, along with the haze of what they
d done, had Sloane pulling Dex close against him instead.

  He knew he was leaving himself vulnerable, but right now, he needed to feel Dex in his arms, and when Dex returned his embrace with nothing but a soft sigh, Sloane was relieved. He didn’t know how long it would last. Probably about as long as it took morning to come around, but for now, he was happy. After a few minutes, he reluctantly pulled out, rolling over to remove the condom, tie it off, and chuck it in the wastebasket beside the nightstand.

  Bracing himself, he turned, watching as Dex grabbed a wet wipe from a packet inside the other nightstand and cleaned his stomach off. When he finished, he moved to get up but Sloane reached over. “Give it here.”

  Dex smiled at him and handed it over. Sloane tossed it into the wastebasket before heading into the bathroom. He splashed some water over his face before he caught sight of his disheveled and flushed skin in the mirror. Hands braced on the sink, he tried hard not to panic. They had complicated the fuck out of everything. He had complicated the fuck out everything. Sloane liked Dex, a lot, which was what was making this so much worse.

  “Hey, come to bed.”

  Sloane gave a start, finding Dex leaning against the doorframe, his hand held out to him and a sweet smile on his face. How long had Dex been standing there? Sloane waited for signs of hurt feelings or disappointment, but Dex continued to smile tenderly at him.

  “I could use a good night’s sleep because come morning, I am going to be so sore.” He leaned in to whisper, “This hot guy fucked me into the mattress, and he was like huge.”

  Sloane chuckled, some of his tension slipping away. “Sounds intense.”

  “It was. Which is why I could use a cuddle.”

  “You want to cuddle?”

  “Fuck yeah I want to cuddle. You don’t get to have this fine piece of ass and then not cuddle, so I suggest you get in that bed right now, mister.”

  “Yes, sir!” Sloane saluted and headed back into the bedroom with Dex on his heels. He climbed in under the warm duvet and lay on his back, smiling as Dex climbed in and snuggled up close. He turned Sloane’s face toward him and kissed him gently on his lips before releasing him. Then he wrapped an arm around Sloane’s chest, wrapped a leg around Sloane’s and settled in. He held Dex against him, planting a kiss on the top of his head, waiting for the steady rise and fall of his chest, along with the feel of his warm breath against Sloane’s skin that signaled Dex was asleep, before he whispered, “Thank you.”

  DEX LET out a low groan and rolled onto his back, his hand falling onto the empty side of the bed. Sloane must have left early in hopes of avoiding any awkwardness, though there certainly wouldn’t be any from Dex’s end. He’d seen the guilt on the guy’s face the night before in the bathroom, and he didn’t want to push things. As much as he wanted to explore whatever was between them, he knew Sloane wasn’t ready to do the same. For now, Dex would enjoy these moments while they lasted and whatever the outcome, he’d worry about it then.

  He forced himself out of bed, smiling when he thought about the night before. God, he couldn’t remember the last time he’d wanted someone so bad. Just the thought of Sloane fucking him had him getting hard. Nothing a nice cool shower and a hand job wouldn’t cure. He finished brushing his teeth and turned to the shower with thoughts of a tall, gruff alpha with amber eyes, a sweet ass, and a thick hard cock. This was going to be the shortest handy J in history.

  “Mind if I join you?”

  “Holy fuck!” Dex spun around, nearly falling over his feet when Sloane caught him, pulling him against his chest, his rich laughter invading every inch of Dex.

  Sloane held him close and delivered a kiss to his lips. “Morning. Sorry. I didn’t mean to scare you.”

  “You gotta stop doing that!”

  “Doing what?”

  “That popping-up-outta-nowhere thing you do.”

  Sloane’s brows rose in amusement. “I use doors like everyone else.”

  “Yeah, but you don’t make sounds like everyone else. You and your Felid silent stalkery thing. Scares the crap out of me.”

  “I’m sorry,” Sloane said with a chuckle. “I’ll try to announce myself the next time I walk into a room.”

  “You do that,” Dex grumbled.

  “Aw, someone needs his coffee,” Sloane purred, his hand roaming down Dex’s naked body. Dex jutted his bottom lip out tragically.

  “I do.”

  “I made coffee and breakfast. That’s why I left you in bed.”

  Dex stared at him. “You made me breakfast?”

  “Yeah. Your ex never made you breakfast?”

  Dex scoffed. “Lou might know good food, but that doesn’t mean he can cook it. I did all the cooking. He brought home leftovers. Not that I’m knocking the leftovers, ’cause they were pretty damn tasty, but if there weren’t any, it was up to me. He also slept in, and I got up early, so you know. Passing boats in the night and all that crap.”

  “Well, there’s breakfast for you.” He pressed his lips to Dex’s neck, sending a shiver through him. “You know what else you need?”

  “Hm?” Dex melted into him, at this point not caring about anything other than Sloane’s large hands squeezing his ass cheeks.

  “I think you need to undress me, get me in the shower, and show me how much you appreciate my making you breakfast.”

  Dex’s face went up in flames, and he nodded fervently. “I can do that.” His heart jolted and his pulse pounded at the sight of Sloane’s pupils dilating, the lust in them making Dex ache. Licking his bottom lip, Dex snapped out of it. He grabbed the hem of Sloane’s T-shirt and pulled it up over his head, tossing it to one side before moving onto his belt and fumbling to unbuckle it. There was no time or patience for finesse. He wanted Sloane naked as quickly as possible. Dex’s muscles still ached, his body was still in need of recovery, but his brain pushed all that aside at the idea of doing all manner of naughty things in the shower. It was amazing what a guy could endure when sex was on offer.

  As soon as he had Sloane naked in front of him, he grabbed his hand and pulled him into the shower, turning on the water to a nice warm temperature. He turned and met Sloane’s gaze.

  “What’ll it be?”

  A sinful look came onto Sloane’s face, and Sloane backed up against the wall. “I want to see you on your knees with my dick in your mouth.”

  Holy fuck. “Okay,” was all that managed to find its way out of Dex’s mouth. Frankly, he was surprised his brain was still functioning enough to say that much. He got down on his knees, Sloane’s hard erection in front of him. With a shaky hand, he guided it into his mouth and started sucking and licking. He kept his eyes open, the water hitting his ass and the backs of his legs as he popped off Sloane to trail his tongue up the side of his cock, up to the top, and over the slit. Sloane let out a low moan, his bottom lip between his teeth as he slipped one hand into Dex’s hair, fingers curling tight around his damp locks. Sloane tentatively thrust forward, and Dex opened his mouth.

  “Oh God. Yeah,” Sloane moaned, slowly fucking Dex’s mouth, his dick moving slow at first, drawing nearly all the way out and then just as slowly, all the way in. Dex pressed his lips tight against Sloane’s hard cock, his fingers
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