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Authors: Toni Griffin

Tags: #gay paranormal erotic romance

Dealing with the Past (10 page)

BOOK: Dealing with the Past
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"Fine," Aiden said once he had composed himself.

"I'll call them in the morning, not too early though." Jackson waggled his eyebrows at his mate; he saw Aiden's lips twitch as they threatened to break out in laughter again. Jackson really did enjoy seeing his mate happy. "Come on. For now there's nothing we can do. Let's get you home." Aiden nodded.

Jackson once again placed his hand on the small of Aiden's back and the pair continued on their way out of the cemetery. Jackson was relieved to see only his car still in the parking area. It meant that even though Duncan and Bianca had threatened Aiden, they hadn't taken it a step further and started to follow him.

Jackson led Aiden to the car and clicked the button to unlock the doors. He reached out and pulled the handle, opening the door for Aiden. Aiden looked up at him with a weird expression; it seemed almost a mix between confusion and longing but Jackson wasn't sure and was too scared to hope.

Once Aiden was sitting down, Jackson closed the door before stowing his small bag in the backseat and heading to the driver's side. Jackson slid into the car and after buckling up, he started the engine. Jackson looked at Aiden but the man seemed to be deep in thought at the moment so Jackson put the car in gear and headed back to Aiden's place.

The traffic was light at that time of night and they made good time on the way. Jackson pulled up into the circular driveway and pulled in behind Aiden's little VW bug that was parked in his carport. Jackson noticed the front window had been replaced, no one would know anything had happened that afternoon if they didn't already.

Jackson put the car in neutral and turned to Aiden. The man still seemed to be deep in thought, unaware they had made it back to his place already. Jackson reached out and cupped the side of his mate's face. Aiden startled slightly as if coming out of a trance.

"We're here," Jackson said softly, not wanting to intrude too much on his mate's thoughts.

Aiden looked around him, seeming surprised at where they were. "I don't remember the drive at all," he said as a light dusting of pink heated his cheeks.

Jackson grinned. "That's okay, I do and that's all that really matters. You obviously had other things on your mind."

Aiden nodded then bit his lip. "Would you like to come in for a drink?" he asked quickly "Maybe watch a movie with me?" Jackson was shocked at the offer. He honestly didn't think he would ever hear Aiden ask him that.

"Are you sure?" Jackson wanted to double check. He didn't want Aiden to think he was being pressured into anything. Jackson was willing to wait for as long as it took.

"Yeah, I'm sure," Aiden said after a moment of thinking.

"Okay, in that case, I would love to." Jackson turned the car off and they both got out. Jackson walked around the vehicle until he was stood behind Aiden as the man unlocked his front door.

"What are you in the mood for watching?" Aiden asked him as he pushed the door open and flicked on the light and allowed Jackson to enter after him before closing and locking the door.

Jackson wasn't sure if locking of the door was an automatic response for Aiden or if he only did it when he knew no one would be leaving again. God, he hoped it was the second.

"I'm not really fussed. I like all types of movies. Whatever you want to watch is fine by me." Jackson watched as Aiden took his sneakers and socks off and wiggled his toes. "Can I help you with anything?" Jackson asked as he watched Aiden's sexy jean-clad ass as the man walked into the kitchen.

"No, I'm fine. Feel free to get comfortable. The couch is great to lie on. I often find myself falling asleep in front of the television." Jackson looked at the couch and couldn't blame the guy. He hadn't really paid that much attention when he had been there that afternoon with everything that had been going on but now that he actually took the time to look, he liked what he saw.

Aiden had a large sectional lounge. The thing was probably way too big for the small unit it was currently residing in. There was a small square table to the left as he entered the front door, then the couch started and followed the wall to the corner and right along the back wall. No wonder the thing had been covered in glass. The couch itself was light brown suede and looked plush and comfy and was calling Jackson's name at that very moment. Jackson kicked off his shoes before he sat down, facing the television, which was hanging on the wall directly in front of him.

"I only have bourbon, is that okay?" Aiden asked as he poked his head out of the kitchen.

"That's fine. Do you have a couple of ice cubes?"

"Yeah, no worries." Jackson listened as Aiden poured their drinks and carried them over. He handed one to Jackson and took a sip of the other before placing in on the floor in front of the couch. "How about
Real Steel
? You can't beat Hugh Jackman if you ask me." Aiden said as he picked up the remote and started turning on the electronics.

"Sounds great, and I happen to agree with you. He makes for one sexy as hell Wolverine."

"Oh yeah." Aiden went to the small black cabinet sitting under the television and pulled out a draw. The Blu-ray Disc was selected and placed in the player, then everything was tucked back into place. Aiden headed over to the light switch by the door and hesitated. "Do you mind? I like watching movies in the dark."

"Not at all. That's the best way to watch them." Jackson saw the man's smile as he flicked the switch and plunged them into darkness, the soft glow from the TV the only light in the room. Jackson settled back and relaxed; he took a sip of his drink and wanted to groan when Aiden sat down beside him. He wasn't so close that they were touching but close enough that Jackson could smell his alluring scent and wanted to reach out and pull the other man to him.

Jackson flexed his hand to try and stop himself from reaching out for Aiden. He took another sip of his bourbon and felt the burn as it slid down his throat. Jackson concentrated on the screen in front of him and, before he knew it, he was wrapped up in the movie and a half hour had passed.

"I'm going to lay down, that okay with you?" Aiden asked quietly from beside him.

"Yeah, go for it." Jackson turned his attention back to the screen. He jumped a little when he felt pressure against his thigh. Looking down he watched as Aiden got comfortable. The man was stretched out on the couch with his head making a pillow of his thigh, his hands curled up against Jackson's leg under his mate's head.

Jackson took a deep breath to settle his nerves. God, he had longed for this but never thought they would get there. Hesitantly, Jackson lowered his hand and ran his fingers lightly through Aiden's blond wavy curls.

A deep sigh of what Jackson hoped was contentment rose to his ears and Jackson relaxed back into the couch, his mate happily using him for a pillow. Jackson watched the movie, never once removing his hand from his mate until the credits rolled.

Aiden didn't stir and Jackson smiled down at his sleeping mate. The man looked so peaceful and beautiful he wanted nothing more than to lean down and kiss him. Instead he gently lifted Aiden's head from his leg and scooted out from under him. Jackson stood then made his way slowly in the dark to Aiden's bedroom. The air conditioner was already on and the room was lovely and cool. Jackson turned the bedside lamp onto its lowest setting and flipped the covers back before heading out to the lounge room.

Jackson bent down and scooped Aiden into his arms. The man fit perfectly there as he snuggled closer in against Jackson's chest. Jackson slowly made his way back to the bedroom and placed Aiden gently in bed.

Not wanting to disturb his mate more than he needed to, Jackson carefully stripped the shirt over his mate's head and worked the jeans off Aiden's legs. As much as he would have loved to continue removing clothes from Aiden's body, he left the boxer briefs Aiden wore in place. Jackson could clearly see the outline of Aiden's flaccid cock beneath the material.

Jackson bit back the groan in his throat at the thought of getting to look under the offending material. His eyes travelled up Aiden's nearly naked body and Jackson loved everything he saw, the soft pale skin of Aiden's tummy and the small dusty pink nipples. Jackson wanted to lean down and take them in his mouth, sucking them then biting down gently as Aiden writhed beneath him.

Jackson closed his eyes and willed his body to behave. If he wasn't careful he would start to feel like a damn pervert standing there watching a man sleep and getting hard while doing it.

He reached down and grabbed the covers, pulling them over Aiden, tucking the other man in.

Jackson leant down and placed a gentle kiss on Aiden's lips. "Sleep well, my mate," he whispered.

Straightening up, Jackson felt a soft brush of skin against his hand. He looked down to see Aiden's hand curled around his own, stopping him from moving. Jackson glanced at Aiden's face but his eyes were still closed, his face relaxed and peaceful.

"Stay." Aiden's voice was barely more than a whisper but it had the power to stop Jackson's heart from beating. Had he heard the man correctly?

"Aiden?" Jackson didn't dare hope that his mate wanted him.

Aiden's eyes blinked open and he looked up at Jackson with such longing that Jackson sucked in a sharp breath. He never thought to see his mate looking at him like that. "Please, stay the night with me?" The poor man sounded so unsure that Jackson leant down and placed another quick kiss on his lips before pulling back.

"Just let me go out and turn everything off."

"'kay," Aiden mumbled. Jackson touched the lamp on the bedside table until it turned off then walked back out to the living room. He placed the glasses in the kitchen on the bench and turned off all the electronic equipment. Jackson checked the door to make sure it was locked then carefully made his way in the dark back to Aiden's bedroom. He stripped down to his underwear, placing his clothes over the back of a chair just to his left.

Jackson felt around until he touched the bed and trailed his fingers along it until he reached the top. He pulled the covers back and slipped into the cool sheets. Lying back, he stared unseeing at the celling. His heart was pounding; after meeting Aiden again and realising the man was his mate and what he had put him through in their youth, Jackson never thought he would be here.

Aiden rolled over and snuggled into Jackson's side. Jackson gently extricated his arm and wrapped it around Aiden, pulling the man closer still. Aiden placed a soft kiss on his skin then sighed deeply.

"Sleep." The word was barely discernible and was quickly followed by a light snore.

Jackson let the breath he had been holding out in one long exhale. He bent down and kissed Aiden's head, the man's hair smelled fantastic and Jackson hoped he got another opportunity to enjoy the scent. Content for maybe the first time in his life, Jackson held his mate close, closed his eyes, and drifted off to sleep.

Chapter 10

 

Aiden woke surrounded by warmth and wondered what was happening until the events of the previous night slowly came back to him. He had fallen asleep during the movie. He hadn't meant to, but he had just been so comfortable with his head in Jackson's lap and the man's hand running through his hair that he had drifted off before he knew it.

He had woken when Jackson lifted him up to carry him to bed. Aiden hadn't let Jackson know he was awake as he wanted to see what the other man would do. When Jackson had placed him in bed and stripped him, it had taken everything in him for his body not to react to the eyes he could feel on him.

Aiden couldn't believe how forward he'd been by asking the other man to stay but when Jackson had gently kissed him and said goodnight, Aiden couldn't help himself. His lips tingled at the touch and his mind reverberated with what Jackson had said.
Mate.
Did that mean what he thought it did? Did it mean the same thing as what he had read in all the romance books? He supposed there was really only one way to find out.

Opening his eyes, Aiden realised it had to be very early as the room was still filled with darkness. Aiden raised his head from where it rested on Jackson's shoulder and looked behind him at his alarm clock. He groaned when he saw it wasn't quite five in the morning yet he was wide awake, his thoughts running rampant through his head, each and every one of them about the man currently sharing his bed.

Jackson's arm tightened against his back and pulled him back down again. Aiden landed with a soft 'oomph' and he wanted to smack himself for his seriously uncool move. Jackson chuckled into his hair then kissed his head. In a sleepy voice, he said, "Go back to sleep, babe, it's too early."

Babe?
"Can't sleep," he said quietly.

"I bet I could get you to go back to sleep," Jackson said lasciviously.

Aiden could feel the blush rise in his cheeks even if it couldn't be seen in the darkness of the room. "That's not helping," he complained lightly.

"What would help?" Jackson asked around a rather large yawn.

"What did you mean last night?" he asked instead.

"Last night when?"

"When you kissed me good night and called me mate." Aiden felt Jackson stiffen beneath him for a moment before his hand started tracing imaginary patterns on his back again.

"You heard that, did you?" Aiden nodded into Jackson's shoulder. "I thought you were asleep."

"Nope, what did you mean?"

Jackson seemed to think about what he was going to say for a long time before he explained. "Necromancers are just like any other paranormal creature in that we're all given a mate by fate who is said to be the other half of our soul. They complete us as no other possibly could; they ground us and help us to control the magic, beast, or hunger inside us." Aiden listened raptly to what Jackson was saying.

"Everyone is different in how we identify our mates. For Necromancers, it's by touch."

Aiden thought about that for a moment. "The tingling," he said.

"Yes. That's the way we know we've met the one meant for us. That day when you stormed out of my office, I grabbed your arm to try and stop you from leaving. I knew who you were to me the instant my hand touched your skin." Jackson's voice softened to barely a whisper.

BOOK: Dealing with the Past
9.1Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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