All That Remains (Metamorphosis Book 1) (2 page)

BOOK: All That Remains (Metamorphosis Book 1)
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Two

T
he Commons
, as the circle at the center of the village was called, throbbed with music and laughter. Most of the women in Paradise Village knew each other. They had a tightknit community. Even the women who didn’t necessarily like one another tended to hang out together. It had become the way of things since the sickness decimated the population three centuries ago. Culture had changed and relationships had been one of the things most radically affected.

Sisterhood wasn’t just a concept anymore. It was a tangible thing that saved Summer’s sanity. In a world where women were so vastly outnumbered, it meant everything to be around other people who understood what it meant to be female.

So she stood out in the warm night under a blanket of bright stars, her hands up in the air, bouncing to the music, a smile on her face as her friends moved around her, sometimes pausing to hug her or lean close to say something.

Occasionally, a man would approach, respectfully nearly always. He’d hold out his hand and ask her to dance and she did. She loved to dance.

She looked back over her shoulder when one of her friends let go of her waist to move off toward the large tables of food. And that’s when she saw Charlie. His gaze snagged on hers and he made his way through the crowd to her.

He leaned in to speak in her ear. “You look pretty. I love the dress.”

And just like that, his rhythm clicked with hers as they moved their hips to the music.

“Thank you. You look pretty good yourself. Did you get checked in all right?”

He got closer, his arm sliding around her waist as he danced, her back to his front.

“It took forever, but yes, we’re checked in and ready to go.”

He felt really good against her. Warm and vibrant. His cock brushed against her ass and gave her an idea of what he had behind the zipper too. She definitely had no complaints.

She looked through the crowd as they danced. All the young people had gone off to bed and the space was now adults only. Over in a far corner a man knelt between a woman’s thighs, his face buried, mouth on her pussy.

It wasn’t unusual for a couple or a group to have sex in full view of others—with windows open, just off a well-traveled path, whatever—it was a way of sharing a thirst for life, especially in the villages.

It was hot to watch sometimes. But it was
really
hot to watch with someone else.

His lips brushed her ear. “Are you watching that?”

She nodded, switching her hips to brush from side to side against his cock.

He gave a muffled curse. “You’re so fucking hot. Do you like that? Having a mouth on your pussy?”

She went hot all over. “Yes.”

“One of my favorite things, eating pussy. Sweet, wet, slick, god I love it.”

His palm splayed against her belly and hip, his cock hard against her ass and a wave of desire hit her with such force she nearly moaned.

How did this man get her so hot so fast?

The woman across the way let her head fall back as the man between her legs moved his face from side to side.

Every move Summer made brought sweet, slick friction in her pussy. Not enough to come, but certainly enough to get her hot.

The tip of Charlie’s tongue traced the edge of her ear. The hand the woman had slid into the man’s hair went white at the knuckles where she tightened it.

“She’s close.”

Another man came to stand behind the woman, his hands sliding down her shoulders and then to bare her breasts. He pinched and pulled on her nipples and Summer felt the answering tug in her belly.

The way they handled her was…it sent a shiver through Summer, through that dark part of her. She hummed her pleasure at the way the man at the woman’s back moved one of his hands up into her hair, pulling her head back and dropping his own down for a kiss.

Even across several feet of a dance floor full of people, even in the dark lit by fairy lights and torches, Summer knew when the woman came. Could tell by the arch of her back, the thrust and roll of her hips against her man’s face.

She swallowed hard but the groan came anyway.

Charlie had to count backward from thirty to keep from coming in his damned pants. Summer’s sweet body brushing against his was enough to get him rock-hard, but it was the way she so unabashedly watched the threesome across the dance floor give each other pleasure, lips parted, her nipples pressing hard against the blouse she wore that pushed him into throbbing territory.

He spun her to face him. “I have to kiss you.”

Her eyes went half lidded, her lips parted slightly. He took that for an invitation and slid his arms around her, holding her to his body, his mouth meeting hers, tongue tracing the juicy bottom lip before tasting her more fully.

Her skin was warm against the hands he splayed against her back, burning through the thin cotton of her dress. Her nipples pressed into his chest as she tiptoed up to kiss him more fully.

All around them people danced, moved, laughed and loved. Charlie fell into her mouth, fell into Summer like she was a feast and he’d been starving. No one but Hatch brought out this sort of hunger in him.

His fingers curled, as if trying to pull her closer, pull her into him. He broke away, resting his forehead against hers. “I want to talk. Take a walk with me?”

“Is your partner going to be all right with this? With me?”

“He should be here by now, actually. We did laundry earlier and he wanted to stop and grab the clothes before he came out.” He kissed her again. “He knows about you. Wants to meet you. I wouldn’t be doing this if he didn’t.”

Some male partners freely fucked around with women until they found their permanent third. Some never did. Some didn’t want a woman at all. He and Hatch were on the same page. When other women came along, neither of them did a thing without the other man knowing. It felt wrong to do it any other way. He loved Hatch, respected him and what they had too much to go fucking it up by being dumb. The key to a working relationship was communication and knowing the rules.

They wanted a woman to be their third. That third would be a person they both desired and clicked with, who felt that in return. Three had enough angles to worry over without adding any unnecessary ones.

“Will you walk with me? At least to get away from the noise so I can hear you.”

“All right.”

He took her hand and they stopped to load a plate with some food and grab a mug with some ale on their way. That’s when he caught sight of Hatch and smiled.

“There he is.” Charlie guided her to a picnic table away from the noise. She put her things down, turning with a smile in Hatch’s direction.

H
atch came
out of the shadows, his gaze on Charlie for long moments before he turned to the woman at his side.

He pulled up to a stop, his mouth dropping open. “Summer?”

“Hatch?”

Joyous at the sight of her, he stepped close and pulled her into a hug that turned into a quick twirl as he held her, breathing her in.

And like no time had passed, his mouth found hers in a kiss tinged with desperate happiness and longing. Her taste, god, he’d pretended he’d forgotten it but it settled right back into him, in a place that had been hers all along.

“You’re here like I dreamed you up,” he murmured as he broke the kiss.

She opened her eyes and looked right into him. At first she was soft and sweet but then her gaze narrowed and he stepped back a little, but kept a hand on her hip because he was afraid if he stopped touching her she’d disappear like smoke.

“I take it you two know each other?”

“Our parents are New Earthers. Summer was my first real friend. My best friend for most of my life.” And then it had been more. “We became blood siblings. You know you slice your palms open and clasp hands? Which sort of sounds weird because things weren’t so brother and sisterly later on. Summer was my first love.”

“And then we moved to Portland.”

“And I followed.” He grinned but she wasn’t smiling.

“And you left again two years later. And here we are, four years after that.” Her voice was flat. Charlie looked back and forth between them, confused.

“I’m so glad to see you.” Hatch stepped closer to touch her face. “I’ve missed you a hell of a lot.”

She swallowed hard. The emotion was all over her face. She’d never had the ability to hide her feelings from him. He’d hurt her deeply and the dam he’d built around his emotions, the way he’d left and stayed away began to crumble.

“I should go. I have to get up early in the morning for work.”

“There’s a story here.” Charlie cocked his head as he brushed the hair away from her face.

“Everyone has a story or two. It was really nice dancing with you.”

“Wait. You can’t just leave.” Hatch slid his hand into hers, linking his fingers with hers.

“Funny, I said the same thing four years ago.” She pulled her hand back and turned, walking away.

They both followed. Charlie gave him a look as they did. “I’ll explain later.” After a few stunned moments, Hatch paused, turning to Charlie. “I was in love with her for most of my life in one way or another. Do you want to pursue this?”

Charlie smirked. “You neglected to tell me any of this?”

“I didn’t hide it. But I shoved it so far down I pretended I forgot about it because I didn’t know what else to do with it. I guess in the end, right now I need to ask you the same thing about her. Do
you
want to pursue her? This is complicated. I have deep feelings for her. A long history.” Hatch searched Charlie’s face. “What we have is important to me. I’m not willing to fuck with it.”

Charlie put his hand in Hatch’s, squeezing. “You know my general opinion of fate, right? What were the chances she’d be here? That I would have been so totally attracted to her from the moment I caught sight of her? This is meant to be.”

Hatch sighed. Charlie. So sweet and sentimental. But maybe right. In any case he was happy the answer was yes because he wanted her. More than he had when he’d driven away from Portland. Wanted her
with
Charlie.

Ahead they watched her turn the corner into a small group of permanent cabins and caravans on solid foundations. She approached what must have been her place. Fairy lights lit up the front where a wooden deck had been built. A small container garden fronted the space. She’d made a home for herself in Paradise Village.

She had already opened her door and gone inside so they went to her porch and knocked.

"Please?" Hatch asked as he knocked.

"Please what?" she asked from the other side of the still closed door.

Charlie broke in. "I don't know the whys of this, Summer, but I do know we—all three of us—have something together. I saw the way you looked at Hatch. I saw the way he looked at you. Don't you want to see what could happen? Or at the very least listen to him?"

She opened the door but remained blocking their entry. "Is that what this is about then? You want to double team fuck me?"

Hatch's mouth twitched but he held back a smile. Because
holy shit, yes
did he want that. But they had other things to work out first.

"I think we have some things to work out before we get to that step."

The hardness around her mouth faded and she stepped back.

And closed the door.

"I can't, Hatch," she said from inside.

Charlie blew out a breath.

Hatch shrugged. "For tonight we'll do it your way. But I'm here and I know you're here. You’re my forever, sweetness. No time apart can erase all that's between us."

"Fuck off. Go away."

Charlie laughed. "See you soon, Summer." He jerked his head toward the walkway. "Come on, baby. Let her have some space."

Three

O
nce they'd gotten back
to their caravan Hatch kicked the door closed. Charlie loved the sullen mouth, the ferocity of the intent on his face.

"You want to talk about it?"

"I want you to suck my cock first."

Well now
.

He crossed the space and went to his knees before Hatch, who reached down to send a hand through his hair. Charlie undid the belt and unzipped Hatch's trousers, freeing his cock from his shorts.

Charlie hummed his delight before he licked over the head.

"You always feel so fucking good."

Charlie licked around the crown before digging the tip of his tongue into that spot where the flare met the meat of the head.

Hatch groaned. "Goddamn. Yes. Yes."

Charlie worked his hand between Hatch's legs to cup his balls, scoring them slightly.

Hatch's hips jutted forward, sending a whole lot of cock into Charlie's mouth. He swallowed eagerly.

Breathing through his nose, he concentrated and took Hatch deeper with each draw of his mouth until his lips touched the base.

"Baby, your mouth undoes me."

Hatch was a talker. It made precome bead, wet against Charlie's shorts. Hatch wasn't chatty in any other way, but once sex was involved, he opened that mouth of his and the most delightful filth flowed out.

"You gonna fuck me after this? Hm?"

Charlie groaned and then hummed his assent. Oh yes he was going to get in that tight ass that night. Definitely.

"Get me ready then." Hatch toed off his shoes and Charlie managed to shove Hatch’s pants down one handed while still sucking cock. The thunk of the tube of lube played against his shoulder as Hatch handed it to him.

Charlie continued the suck and draw of that fat cock while he lubed his fingers before reaching back to slide the tips against Hatch's perineum and then over his asshole.

He pressed slow and sure as he sucked and licked, letting Hatch's body adjust to the intrusion. Hatch was as dominant as they came in nearly all ways. Charlie was more laid back. Charlie who found himself on his knees with Hatch's cock in his mouth far more often than the other way around.

But it was nearly always Charlie who fucked Hatch. Neither man questioned it. That’s how it worked and how they both liked it.

"Work your cock while you suck me. I'll hold mine for you."

Hatch grabbed his cock at the base and Charlie took his free hand, unzipped his trousers and fisted his cock as sparks of pleasure flew through him. He was slick already, his slit leaking as he'd sucked Hatch's cock.

He hummed and Hatch echoed the sound. "I love it when you fuck your fist with your mouth on my cock. Love how hungry you are for it. I'm going to blow and you'll love that too."

He would.

Charlie pumped a fist around his cock, slow and sure. He didn't want to push himself too far and come three seconds after he worked himself inside Hatch. But this was too good, too hot not to touch himself. Tease.

“I’m not going to lie, I can’t get the picture of her between us out of my head. I want to sit her on a counter, spread those sweet, pale legs wide open. You’d bend me over and fuck me rough and slow while I ate that pussy like a starving man.”

Yes, god yes. He’d reach around and jerk Hatch’s cock while he did that. Then again, he loved to eat pussy as much as he loved sucking cock so maybe they’d lick her to climax over and over, taking turns.

Charlie found Hatch’s sweet spot, stroking it and then adding another finger, stretching.


G
oddamn
! Yes, yes, yes,” Hatch yelled and then muttered as Charlie continued. Hatch’s cock got harder and harder until he thrust forward on a curse, shooting down Charlie’s throat.

Hatch, warm and easy, watched as Charlie licked him clean. It was empty and left Hatch a little sad as Charlie drew his fingers from inside Hatch. But he knew what was coming and that made him smile.

Now mellow, Charlie slid away as he took Hatch in with a long, lazy look. “Ride my cock,” Charlie ordered as he moved to the bed, settling with his pillows behind his back, in full view of the mirror to the side of the bed.

Hatch’s cock was already beginning to revive as he got a condom and grabbed the lube.

Charlie shook his head. “No, the other one.”

Shivers ran over Hatch’s skin as he pulled out the warming lube and headed to the bed. He settled on his knees, facing Charlie, lubing Charlie’s cock and then the condom.

Charlie dripped lube onto his fingers then and slid them between Hatch’s legs, making his asshole nice and slick as the heat from the lube crawled through him.

“Get on me. I know you’re begging for it.”

And he was. God he was. Before Charlie, Hatch never would have imagined wanting a cock in his ass as badly as he did now.

Straddling Charlie’s body, Hatch reached back and lined up Charlie’s cock against his hole. So he could control the pace. Hatch loved that burn, the race to pain that made him want to pull off and stop. But he didn’t because he knew the deep wave of pleasure was next.

Charlie’s gaze went half lidded as Hatch slowly took his cock inside. Another bonus of this position was that Hatch could watch Charlie’s expressions change.

Charlie’s mouth canted up slightly. “So fucking tight and hot.”

Hatch merely grunted as he rocked a little, willing himself to relax and open up. Bit by bit and the pain wisped away as Charlie was fully inside.

Sweat beaded down his spine as he began to move again. He jumped on a gasp of pleasure when the head of Charlie’s cock brushed over his sweet spot.

“Look at your cock. Hard again already.”

Hatch looked down at his cock, bouncing as he rode Charlie’s. Heat raced over his skin as pleasure, edged with pain, bloomed through his gut.

Charlie poured lube down Hatch’s cock, leaving a warm trail as it coated him. Then Charlie fisted him, pumping slowly, in time with his push and pull in Hatch’s ass.

This was perfection. The way each movement flowed into the next. The give and take they’d created together. No shame. No guilt. Just a reach for pleasure and the joy of giving it to someone you loved as well.

He watched their reflection in the mirror. A favorite part of sex with Charlie. Watched that fist, glistening with lube, as it fucked Hatch’s cock. Charlie’s face, flushed, gleaming with sweat as he got closer to coming. Charlie caught his bottom lip between his teeth as he dug his heels into the mattress and began to thrust up as Hatch moved down.

It was nearly too much. Sensation swamped him so he gave over. He’d fought it the first few times and he’d tensed. It was better to ride it, to let it have the lead.

So he did, sucking in a gulp of air as the burn eased again. “You’re so close. I can feel it. That muscle on the side of your neck is cording with each thrust. Come on, baby, give it to me.”

Charlie’s mouth slid up at the right. “You too.” He picked up the pace, jacking Hatch faster, the burn of the lube adding to the sensation.

“Yeah, that’s it. Come on. Come on.” Hatch rolled his hips, arching into Charlie’s fist and in turn, stroking Charlie’s cock over his gland again and again until he knew he was going to blow again. “Gonna come all over your belly.”

“Go on then.” Charlie’s words were a snarl as he stilled on a long groan. Hatch’s body hugged Charlie’s cock so tight Hatch felt every jerk and pulse when Charlie finally tipped into climax. That was the last bit of sensation he needed and he joined Charlie, shooting all over Charlie’s hand and belly.

Hatch pulled up carefully and Charlie got up quickly, returning with a warm, wet hand towel so Hatch could clean up as well. One of the reasons they used condoms, even though STDs were a thing of the past, was to make clean up easier, but he wasn’t going to refuse a warm, wet towel in any case.

Charlie grinned. “Now you feel up to talking?”

Hatch stretched, a little sore, but that was all right. “I need to load my pipe and drink some tea while I tell you.”

“I put the chairs outside earlier, you want to sit a while?”

Hatch nodded. “I’ll be out in a few minutes.”

Charlie stepped close, brushing a kiss against his mouth. “We’ll work through it. I’m going out. I’ll load a bowl for us both.”

Hatch moved through their small kitchen and got the water on for tea. His skin smelled like Charlie but every once in a while, there was a wisp of Summer too.

He hadn’t forgotten her. It would have been impossible to forget all that Summer was to him. Everything they’d shared. She was part of him in ways he couldn’t even begin to quantify. Part of his heart. Having had her in his life had shaped the man he was now.

He’d had to leave four years ago. Even though he’d left her behind he didn’t regret his choice to leave the city and go on the road. He’d
needed
it. The city had suffocated him to the point he wasn’t quite sure who he was and what he was doing. And there was no small matter of the fact that if he hadn’t left there’d be no Charlie in his life.

But he hadn’t told Charlie about her. And he needed to now, which also meant he had to truly face the depth of what he’d done and the outcome of it all.

Steeling himself, he poured them both mugs of tea and headed outside.

Charlie was that part of him Hatch had always figured would be underdeveloped. The vulnerable part. Charlie coaxed it to life. Maybe he’d needed the time and space away from everything he’d known to open it up. He wasn’t sure. He did know that all of his life, up until he’d first met Charlie that Summer had been the only other person to see past his exterior to the softer vulnerability within him.

Hatch handed Charlie a mug as he sat.

“Why didn’t you tell me?” Charlie wasn’t hurt, just curious.

Hatch blew out a breath. “I wasn’t nice when I left.” He sipped his tea and then lit the pipe, pulling the smoke into his lungs and holding for long seconds as he tried to find the right words.

“So you know I grew up in the Northeast and that my family are New Earthers. Growing up, we lived on a large communal farm with about twenty other families, mainly triads. Summer’s family was one of those.

“A lot of the childrearing was communal so I didn’t live with my parents. She and her sister lived with hers though and I spent a lot of time at their table. Summer and I were best friends from an early age. She was my confidante.

“She was—is—a light. You can see it from feet away. She smiles and it’s like your muscles unknot. She works like no one I’ve known. She never really seems to get tired.” Hatch snorted. “You saw it too. She’s unique. Special.”

“Even in the dim light last night she caught me up. And today I’d been looking at another woman in line. Summer had been bent behind the counter and she stood and it was like no one else was there.”

Hatch nodded. Thinking about the past. “After we were friends for so long when we were in our teens we became more. But we had to hide it from her parents. Her fathers were very strict about wanting her to be at least eighteen before she started thinking about finding a partner or partners. I suppose the secrecy was part of the excitement. Then her entire family moved to Portland when her older sister entered into a licensed triad and got pregnant.”

Hatch looked up at the clear sky, dotted with a million stars.

“I followed. She was building something in Portland by the time I got there. Her sister had a family and Summer was really close with them. Her parents all had jobs. They had a great plot of land with several small houses on it. I could
see
how happy she was. And I wanted her to be happy.

“But the trip across the country
awakened
something in me. It was my first caravan journey and by the time I got to Portland I was itchy. City life is great for most. Like I said, Summer was thriving.” He shrugged. “But it wasn’t for me and within a few months I knew I had to go. I had to see what was out there. I asked her to come with me but one of her fathers was in poor health and she wanted to stay.”

Guilt washed through him at the memory. He’d been young and desperate to get out of a place he’d felt stifled by. But she’d been dealing with the weight of illness of a loved one. He’d left anyway.

“I wish I could say I was a bigger person and waited with her until she was ready to come with me but once I’d enabled myself to think about the world beyond a city or a village, it was like a fever. I had to go. That was four years ago.”

“You never contacted her from the road?” Charlie’s question held no judgment, which was good because Hatch felt enough of it on his own.

He searched hard for the right words. “I hate this. I hate having to confess that while I did a few times after I’d been away for a while, it felt like I’d made the choice between her and being on the road and that if I really loved her I’d either go back for her or let her go. I talked myself into believing it was better that I was gone. I worked and moved and saw more places and then I met you and we worked and moved and saw more places and that life sort of faded. I always figured she needed life in the city with her family. I assumed she’d be in Portland still, partnered up, or working a farm on a New Earth commune. I felt like I wasn’t what she needed and I couldn’t be what she needed back in the city. I can’t pretend it was totally noble of me. I did it for selfish reasons. I needed to go. But I honestly did feel like she’d move on and have a better life if I just let her go and do it without me. What could we have had with me on the road anyway?”

Charlie blew out a breath.

“When you said you’d met a strawberry blonde it was her I remembered. I never forgot Summer and frankly, when I came to meet you I figured I’d pretend maybe. Because there’s no woman like her. When I saw it was her, when I kissed her—and she kissed me back, by the way—it was like everything was perfect. You and her, me and the two of you. It was right. She’s here and her circumstances are different. It’s a possible thing and the place I’d shoved away my feelings for her can’t hold them anymore. It’s all back, flooding me. I can’t stop remembering. I can’t forget the way she feels.”

BOOK: All That Remains (Metamorphosis Book 1)
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