Look Closer: No Safe Words Here 1-4 out of 5. Boxed Set (10 page)

BOOK: Look Closer: No Safe Words Here 1-4 out of 5. Boxed Set
2.48Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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Suddenly Jake reached out and touched my shoulder.  “Are you sure you’re up for this?  I can get started on that roof of yours today…maybe do this some other time?”

I swallowed the sour taste in my mouth and shook my head.  I felt a steely resolve rise up into my spine, burning out the cold shivers from before. 

I wanted…no, I needed to learn how to do this…and I would start learning it today!

He looked into my eyes again, his grin crooked.  He seemed to like what he saw…did he know what he was looking at?  A woman on the edge of a nervous breakdown?

He closed his eyes and shook his head.

“Then let’s bang out a few rounds.”

 

 

 

 

Chapter Thirteen

Marcus

 

 

 

 

Spending the afternoon, naked and sweaty with Tom had really worn me out…but in a very good way.  I was as relaxed as I’d ever been in my entire life, and the fact that my asshole ached in that really good way, and my cock was spent to the point of not even stirring at the thought of Tom naked, proved that I was as sated as I would ever get.

I lounged in the living room, the house blessedly free of the parents—they had left early for their annual fuck-fest/anniversary weekend vacation—and my kid sister was holed up in the basement working on her “science project.”  I was watching some Food Network show, which was making me hungry, while I had the ear-buds of my iPod in my ears listening to George Michael’s “Father Figure.”

I’d never even heard of the song before, but when I did a search on iTunes for a “Daddy” song, I got some country hillbilly twanging about
Who’s your Daddy?
And George Michael’s
Father Figure.  

For a song recorded in the eighties—which was probably around the time my parents were just starting to date—it was kind of elegant.  Lots of exotic background music that made me think of Egypt or
The Arabian Nights
.

Suddenly the view of The Food Network was blocked by a guy’s jean clad crotch.  I looked up warily.  It was a pretty nice crotch, but as I scanned up the thin yet toned body, I recognized the guy before I even got to his face.

I pulled out my ear-buds and sat up on the couch.  “Hey there, Mikey.”

Michael Long cringed half heartedly.  He acted like he didn’t like being called Mikey, but I knew by the way his cheeks flushed that he really, truly did.

I frowned at him and looked over to the front door.  I knew I’d locked it when I came home.

“How did you get in?”

“I had to let him in!” My sister’s voice boomed from the kitchen.  “He was banging on the door for like ten minutes, and you couldn’t be bothered to detach from your stupid music long enough to let him in, so I had to!” 

I heard her sigh and could tell she was shaking her head at me.  She was like that.  I irritated my little sis like nothing else.

“I was going to order us some pizza,” she said, a put upon quality to her voice.  “You want pepperoni and sausage on your half, right?”

“Sure,” I said.  She knew me so well.

“You want to stay and have some, Mike?  I’ll order an extra large if you do.  I get bacon and pineapple on my half.”

Mikey shrugged, looking embarrassed.  “Sure, thanks.  Both sound good.”

Liar… 
Nobody but my genius freak of a sister liked pineapple on pizza.

“Pay the delivery guy when he gets here,” she commanded.   “The parental units left the money on the mantel, so don’t forget to tip him, okay?”

“Yes, sir!” I chimed in a fake military tone of voice.”

“Dick…” she muttered before I heard the door to the basement slam shut. 

“Natalie’s at that difficult age,” I said to Mikey.  He smiled and forced himself to look away, rubbing the back of his neck with his hand—he’d been staring at me the whole time he’d been here. 

I was shirtless and wearing only my too tight swim trunks.  And he was gay.  So I guess that was explanation enough.

“So what can I do for you?” I asked.

His mouth fell open and his eyes glazed over.  I guess I’d put a little too much innuendo into that question.  And from the tightly wound body language he had from his head to his toes, he was still a virgin.

I mentally sighed.

In a city as big as Tempe, with over three thousand students going to Crest View High, he couldn’t find one gay guy to screw around with?

That was just plain laziness.  Mikey was cute, in the boy-next-door kind of way, with that creamy complexion and big, brown puppy dog eyes.  And if you could get the guy to smile, he had great dimples and could light up a room.

Plus he had a nice, tight little body—all that running in track and cross country kept him pretty fit.  And now that I was looking at him, he’d filled out a little too…must be hitting the weight room some—and I think his shoulders were filling out pretty well too…

I closed my eyes and mentally cringed.  Mikey wasn’t my type.  And I’d vowed when I first came out to him that I’d never let him be my type.  He was like the little brother I’d never had…I felt protective as hell about him, and liked him plenty…but he was so…

I couldn’t say irritating or always bugging me, because I usually had to seek him out—he was that shy.  So for him to be here in my living room, uninvited, it had to be pretty important. 

I reached for my discarded black tank top, wishing it was the too big t-shirt I’d had on earlier, and pulled it on over my naked torso.

“Let’s go out on the front porch and wait for the pizza.”

 

 

 

 

Chapter Fourteen

Lila

 

 

 

 

Walking out of that firing range, I’d never felt so good in my life.

I felt seven feet tall, young, beautiful, strong…no, not just strong, powerful!  It was a feeling I hadn’t found at the beauty salon, self-improvement seminars, or at the bottom of a bottle of “Happy Pills.” 

I felt high…and I was actually turned on.

The wind blew hard and right through me.  Usually I’d cower from it, but not today, I stretch into it like a cat wanting to be petted.  It blew through my hair, over and around and through me, touching every single inch of me, like an ardent lover. 

I laughed, and caught myself looking at Jake with hungry eyes.  That made me come down to earth a little.  But as I looked harder, and saw more and more of him that I liked—like how he walked.  He was slightly bow-legged.  And how he rubbed his neck after he would look at me.  I got the impression there that he was enjoying looking at me as much as I was enjoying checking him out.

I had a flash of him being behind me at the range, his arms over mine, his hands folded lightly about mine, as he instructed me on how to aim and pull the trigger.  That had been nice…hell, it had been goddamn hot.

But then something really wonderful happened in that narrow but long shooting gallery.  I suddenly became one with that gun he’d brought in for me.  He’d said it was a Browning high power, and it was a twenty-two.  Which I guess was smaller than the big old
Dirty Harry
like gun he was using.

And right there and then, I started shooting like I’d been doing it my entire life.  I hit the target every single time.  Jake chuckled at first, and then when I actually hit dead center on the target, he whistled.

I think I blushed, but I kept shooting.  I lost count how many times I shot that gun, and I didn’t stop until my hands went numb.  Jake took the Browning from me, and shook his head.

“Lila…I’ve never seen anything like that before,” he’d said.  He did that thing where he scrubbed the back of his neck, turning his gaze away, pointedly not looking at me.  “You sure you’ve never fired a gun before?”

“Yeah,” I chortled, breathing in the smell of cordite like it was the aroma of prime rib.  “I’ve never even touched a gun before.”

He stopped shaking his head and looked me in the eye.  He smiled, and I liked how when he smiled it always touched his eyes.  Not many people actually meant it when they smiled.  But he did.  He meant every smile.

“Then you’re the first natural shooter I’ve ever seen.”

Natural…I was a natural.

“We need to celebrate,” I said, excitement in my voice. 

Jake looked up at the sky, and then back down to me.  “I know just the place.”

 

*****

 

Mama’s
was a little bar and grill about seven blocks away from the shooting range, and it was all but empty at this time of day; in limbo between lunch and happy hour.  There was saw dust and peanut shells on the floor—and it took everything in me not to request a broom and dustpan to clean it all up. 

But I didn’t want to seem all crazy to Jake.  I didn’t want him to know how extensive my cleaning obsession was.  I wanted him to think I was “normal.”

That was a laugh!

He ordered us a pitcher of beer, a rack of ribs with fries to split, and a cheddar chili dog a piece.  Just looking at the food when it came gave me heartburn.  But the smell was a smoky, spicy amalgam of deliciousness. 

Plus the mugs that came with the pitcher of beer were spotless.

I took a first tentative bite of my cheddar chili dog and nodded my head when Jake asked if it was to my liking.  I’d never liked hot dogs, no matter what was smothering them.  But this dog was firm, not soggy, and tasted of honest to goodness beef. 

I devoured the hot dog, dipping the fries in the left over chili and cheddar.  And then I started in on my half of the rack of ribs.  This I was especially squeamish about.  I didn’t like barbeque sauce of any kind, and I’d always found the physical look of ribs repulsive—they are the actual ribs of a pig, yanked out off the swine’s corpse and simply shrink-wrapped until someone decides to roast them over an open flame.

Gross and utterly distasteful to my way of thinking.  But damn, they smelled so good.  And since Jake had been right about the cheddar chili dogs, and I’d started on my second mug of ice cold beer, I thought, what the hell?

They were heavier than I’d expected, and the meat was so tender that it practically fell from the bone into my mouth.  The taste—sweet and tangy juices exploded in my mouth with every chew.

I moaned with gastronomical delight.  It was maybe the best meal I had ever eaten.

I groaned as I chewed on the last, succulent bite of ribs, and fell back against the well worn Naugahyde of the booth.  “That has to be the best thing I’ve ever put in my mouth,” I said breathlessly.

Jake raised an eye brow and smirked at me.

What the…and then my words hit me.  I covered my face with my hands as I felt the blood rush to my cheeks making them burn.

“Why do I keep saying things like that to you?”  I looked at him sheepishly through my fingers.

He leaned back into his side of the booth and thumped his chest, letting out a silent burp.  He had a shit-eating grin plastered on his handsome, stubbly mug.  “Guess I’m lucky.”  And then he broke down laughing, chuckling and guffawing so hard that he had hold his belly—which was, to my view of him, non-existent.

“Laugh it up,” I said, my eyes slit into a hard stare as I brought my beer mug to my lips and took another long gulp.  “I’m a natural shot, remember?  Soon I’ll be sniper good, and you’re ass will be mine.”

Jakes eyes got wide, and he laughed even harder.

I closed my eyes, my jaw slack in utter disgrace of what had just poured out of my mouth.  I glared at my mug of beer and very precisely pushed it away from me.

“I don’t think I should drink any more beer,” I said.  “Ever again.”

Jake nodded soberly.  “Beer bad.  Make suburban housewife say crazy, sexy things that might get her in trouble she doesn’t want.”

I licked my lips at Jake’s choice of words.  He said my words were sexy…well, he’d also called me a suburban housewife, but I was, after all.   But he thought I was sexy—sexy enough to get into trouble.

I think I want to get in trouble…

Since one didn’t need a permit to buy ribs, or beer, I paid for lunch…or was it dinner?  Jake tried to object, but I flagged the waitress over and gave her my Visa. 

We wandered out of the bar, filled to the gills with good food and more beer than I was used to…actually, I don’t think I’d ever even drank a beer before.  We piled into Jake’s truck, and he drove us back to my house.  It took almost an hour—it was the beginning of rush hour traffic.  But Jake had good music on his antiquated CD player.  A mixed disc of Patsy Cline, Elvis, a strange indie band he said was called The Black Keys, and some Chopin—what I recognized as the second piano concerto.  My personal favorite of Chopin’s pieces.  It reminded me of Tchaikovsky’s
Sleeping Beauty
.

Such an esoteric music selection—taken with all he knew about home repair, and fire arms, I decided Jake was a Renaissance man.

BOOK: Look Closer: No Safe Words Here 1-4 out of 5. Boxed Set
2.48Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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