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Authors: T.S. MCKINNEY

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BOOK: OVERTIME
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A cold gush of December wind blew harshly against him, nearly knocking him down. He figured it also froze the tears right in his eyes because they never slid down his face like he expected them to. His vision blurred, but the tears didn’t fall.

Jagster
. She’d always called him that. He’d always loved it.

“I wanna
go with you, mommy,” he pleaded, hating himself for being weak—hating himself even more for making her pretty smile vanish. She didn’t smile often and he didn’t want to be the bad boy that took the opportunity away from her.

She made a tsking
sound and bent over until they were eye to eye. She was wearing extra make-up today and her eyes looked even bluer than usual. Her lips were painted a bright pink to match the color applied to her cheeks. The cold wind must have frozen her tears too because her eyes were dry when she looked at him.

“Baby,” she cooed in the voice he’d heard her use with daddy when he’d had too much to drink and she was trying to calm him down before he started pounding both of them with his fists. “Mommy can’t take you with her right now but I promise I’ll send for you as soon as I can. Okay, baby?”

His eyes widened with hope. “You promise?” He turned to the shiny red car. Would he get to ride in the pretty car, too?

“I promise,” she vowed.

He smiled his prettiest smile. All his daddy’s friends said he had the prettiest smile of any boy they’d ever seen. He wanted his mother to see his smile so she would want to come back for him.

“I’ll wait for you, mommy. Please hurry,” he whispered. “You know how daddy is. He’ll hurt me when he knows you’re gone.”

“I know, baby. Be my strong and brave little boy until I get back,” she told him. “Now, run along. When daddy gets home, tell him I left a note for him on the nightstand, explaining everything.”

Those had been her last words to him. Not ‘I love you’ or ‘I hate to leave you with him’. Just to tell daddy about the note. Those words, when he’d repeated them to his daddy four hours later, had almost been his death sentence. Jake Jameson had been furious and when he was
furious, he drank everything he could get his hands on and punched anybody within his reach. As his mother had known,
Jagster
would be the closest body to Jake that night. She’d taken that knowledge, along with her Sunday finest and beautiful smile, and left him with it.

Here’s where the story gets creepy. He’d known what was going to happen to him just as his mother had known what his daddy would do, yet, he still assured himself mommy was coming back for him. He’d waited—day after fucking day, for her to return for him, just like she’d promised. He didn’t own much of anything, but he kept everything except the clothes on his back packed in a grocery sack under his bed so he would be ready to go the second she showed up. Yeah, he’d pulled that fucking pathetic stunt for nearly a year. Christmas had been the worst. He’d been one hundred percent certain she would come for him on Christmas. As it turned out, like Santa, she couldn’t find the house without a decorated tree to guide the way. That Christmas, he’d gotten two black eyes, three cracked ribs, and a sprained left wrist.

Christmas came and went, and she didn’t show back up. New Year’s Day would have been an awesome opportunity to start a new life, but she hadn’t shown up then, either. Not at Easter. Not on his birthday in May. He was supposed to start first grade in August, so surely she would want him to begin school wherever his new life was going to be. In September, he stopped looking for her and unpacked his tiny grocery sack of belongings. He was pretty sure his heart froze and died that day, as well.

Things pretty much stayed the same for several long, painful years. He lived in filth, was pretty much starved to death every moment of every day, and was beaten at least twice a week. He quickly learned that the first of the month was the worst—that’s when his dad received his disability check, which meant the liquor ran freely for several long days. Every kid, he supposed, had goals in their lives. He heard other kids talking on the playground. They never talked to him, but he overheard their ridiculous conversations with each other. Bobby
Messimer
wanted to be an astronaut when he grew up. Benjamin Oliver wanted to be a teacher. Moses Montgomery wanted to be a dancer—which was pretty weird because the poor kid couldn’t walk in a straight line without stumbling and falling. Hannah Buchanan wanted to be a model. He wanted to survive.

His super human power? Being invisible. He loved it. Nobody bothered him. Nobody asked questions he didn’t want to have to answer. Nobody commented on his ratty clothes and thin frame. Invisibility rocked.

The year he turned nine, something happened that would change his outlook—give him hope where hope had never existed before. Yeah, nine years old. It had all started with the basketball courts. He’d gone there to try and escape his father’s fists but quickly found he enjoyed watching the older kids play with their stupid bouncing ball. He watched how they moved, memorized the rules of the game, and convinced himself he could play just as well…even if he’d never touched a basketball in his entire life. It didn’t matter because he was forming a plan. One day they’d forgotten their basketball when they’d headed home for the day. He’d stolen it. It was the first and last thing he’d ever stolen in his life, but he wanted that damned ball so bad that he had been willing to face the gas chamber. He ran all the way home that day, clutching the basketball tighter than he’d held his mother the day she’d left him.

When he wasn’t practicing the moves he’d watched the older kids doing on the courts, he would hide the ball under the house. Every available minute of every day was spent practicing…improving…dreaming. His father had always said he was the most persistent little shit in the world—of course he was referring to the fact that he could take a punch and keep standing like a fool.

At that time, he was small and nimble and a fast mother-fucker. His skills improved every day and his plan grew. Basketball was going to be his way out, his escape.

Once he thought he was good enough, he started going back to the courts and eventually grew the balls to ask to play in a pick-up game. That might not have been a big deal for most kids, but it had damn near killed him to ask to play with them. When they saw how good he was, they let him play, even wanted him on their team. It was the only time he didn’t use his super human power. When he played basketball, he would let his guard down…and that’s when Colton saw him.

Colton.

The little fucking staring stalker.

He’d known right away that Colton was everything he wasn’t. The kid reeked of money and clearly thought the entire world revolved around him. He was a pest—always trying to get him to talk. The other regulars at the court had learned early on that he didn’t talk much (or at all) and they’d respected that about him. Colton did not. He tried and tried…talked and talked. Jagger ignored and ignored.

But his eyes were always on Colton, watching, trying to figure the other boy out. Why did he follow him home? Why did he try to talk to him all the time? Why the hell was he always smiling? Seriously, how could anybody have that much going on to make him smile all the
freakin
’ time? It was a full-blown, beautiful smile that would light up his entire face and make his green eyes sparkle. Colton looked at him like he knew something Jagger didn’t.

Jagger flipped off the lamp and laid his head against his pillow. With his trip down memory-fucking-lane, he would no doubt dream about Colton tonight…again. He hated when that happened. He would wake up feeling lonelier than usual.

He would wake up hot, bothered, and wishing he could get his super human power back. He was going to see Colton tomorrow. He was going to be trapped with Colton for twenty four hours. Could he hold out that long without letting the other man know how much his body craved his touch?

 

 

 

 

Chapter 5

 

 

There was a knock on his door at exactly six in the evening—the exact time Colton had said he would be there to pick him up. Jagger wished he was a normal college student that had a liquor stash in his room because he sure as fuck needed a drink now. Some liquid courage would go a long way to helping him survive the next twenty four hours. Hell, what did one do on a date for twenty four hours?

They fucked; that’s what they did.

Holding his breath, he stood up and walked the eight steps to the door of his dorm. When Riley had left last night, he’d taken the few boxes that contained his worldly possessions and agreed to hold them in his apartment until Jagger returned the next day. It had been a mere three boxes. The room was empty and pathetically sad, the same as it had been the last four years. Riley was right, he hadn’t left a mark of the real Jagger behind. When he left, there wouldn’t even be the faintest reminder that he’d ever been here. He kept walking. Those eight steps reminded him of ‘dead man walking’—like he was headed straight for his own execution.

The knock pounded a bit more firmly this time around. The idea that Colton was getting agitated on the other side of the door made him feel somewhat better. Actually, it made him feel pretty damned good. He smiled, wondering how long he could just stand here, aggravating the dick on the other side of the door. The really good looking - fuck with Jagger’s head - dick on the other side of the door.

The door flung open just as he started to reach for it. Fuck, he thought he had locked it. He jumped back, looking like a total
scaredy
cat. It certainly wasn’t the impression he wanted to set with Colton. He lived by the ‘never let ‘
em
see you’re scared’ motto. It hadn’t worked with his dad and it probably wouldn’t work with Colton either.

“There’s my Wildcat! I was beginning to worry that you’d run off, trying to avoid your duty as losing team!” He smiled, his emerald eyes twinkling with arrogance and lust. And just like that, Jagger felt his nerves turn into a jumbled mess of arousal and nervous fear. Colton’s gaze magically transformed him back into that little boy on the basketball courts—the one nobody
else wanted, except for Colton. Well, he’d be damned to hell before he let Colton know how badly his very presence fucked with Jagger’s head. He forced a blank look on his face.

Jagger rolled his eyes. “Let’s just get this over with.” He glanced down at his cheap Wal-Mart watch and was swamped with shame when he noticed Colton’s eyes travel toward it as well. He jerked his arm back down and tucked it behind his hip. “Clock’s ticking away, smartass. What fun have you got planned for us? Dinner and a movie? Shopping at the mall? A game of H-O-R-S-E? Shopping for prom dresses?

That would be great fun.”
He wasn’t witty. Why the hell was he trying to be witty? He sounded like a moron.

“You got an overnight bag packed?” Colton asked, his eyes darting around the empty room. “If you don’t, that’s fine with me. I’m definitely not opposed to sleeping naked.”

Jagger jerked back like he’d been slapped. Surely he didn’t really think? The arrogant ass had to know he wouldn’t

“Shit, Wildcat! You should see your face right about now! It’s absolutely priceless.” Colton tossed his head back, laughing wildly. “What did you think was going to happen on a twenty-four hour date?”

Choking back outrage, Jagger sputtered, “Not that! You fucking, asshole! I’m not doing
that
.” He couldn’t believe that Colton would honestly think his body was actually on the trading table in the stupid Captain’s challenge. He should have let Riley get him out of it. No, he should kick Colton’s ass himself, be done with him once and for all. Shit, thinking about being done with Colton once and for all made him sick to his stomach.

“I’m not sleeping with you.”

Colton took a step closer, placing his ass right smack dab into Jagger’s personal space. Jagger saw, up close and way too personal, the wicked gleam that turned his emerald eyes an even darker shade. He gasped in shock when his adversary’s tongue darted out to wet his plump lips, teasing him in way that shouldn’t do a damn thing to him, much less send little shock waves through his body before finally settling at his cock and balls. “Who said anything about sleeping?” His deep voice rumbled, sending out little vibes to tickle Jagger’s body in all the important places.

He could feel his heart beating frantically at the pulse along his neck and he feared Colton could see his body’s reaction, as well. He hated showing any sign of weakness but, at the same
time, couldn’t stop his feet from taking a step back, putting some safe distance between him and Colton. “I’m not fucking you,” he finally stuttered out, sounding, he was sure, like a frightened fool. He needed Riley because Riley would know exactly how to handle Colton. Riley wasn’t here.

Colton took a step, taking back the distance Jagger had tried to put between them. “No,
Wildcat
, you won’t be fucking me. It will definitely be the other way around when it happens,” he answered in a calmly arrogant voice that let Jagger know there wasn’t a fucking doubt in his mind that it was going to happen.

He should punch him, that’s exactly what he should do. Punch him right in his handsome face. Punch him hard enough that his lips would swell even more, look the way they would after someone had kissed him fucking senseless. Yeah, he should kiss him fucking senseless…

Shit, how did his mind go there?

BOOK: OVERTIME
12.36Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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