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14 Ratings (4.3)

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Mending Fences (MM)

Cowboys of Snow Lake 3

Siren-BookStrand, Inc.

Heat Rating: SEXTREME
Word Count: 48,866
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[Siren Classic ManLove: Erotic Alternative Cowboy Romance, M/M, light consensual BDSM, spanking, sex toys, HEA]

Getting his life back together is not an easy task for Clayton Jennings, a rodeo cowboy who was accidentally outed as gay in front of his fiancée. He finds himself alone, drunk, and beaten up on a daily basis.

Enter the knight in shining armor.

Jesse Brown, the sheriff of Snow Lake, rescues Clayton. Healing the man from the pain of physical wounds is one thing. Healing him from the hurt of self-loathing and sense of worthlessness is another. Jesse has his work cut out for himself if he means to save Clayton from his enemies—and himself.

The only way to do that is teach the cowboy who has lost everything to accept that maybe he’s not a charity case after all, but the object of a man’s desire, adoration, and love.

A Siren Erotic Romance

Professional Reviews

5 STARS: "Sometimes knowing the difference between a strong hand and someone who intends to harm can be hard to differentiate. Clayton’s story helps display the difference between the two in a way that kept me on the edge of my seat and wanting more. Part of this is because I can see so many others stories in his. Jesse cannot stand to watch Clayton continue to destroy his life, just because he feels as if he deserves to be punished. Jesse’s strength is awe inspiring and made me want to wrangle up the first cowboy I see. Even his silence says more than a ten page letter. Jesse's willing to give Clayton what he needs, which may not always be what he or Clayton wants. His ability to see what's needed and give it to Clayton was another characteristic that I envied. If more people had this ability, relationships would be much easier in real life. With two completely different personalities, Clayton and Jesse’s story kept me mesmerized. I even enjoyed how their past played a role in their present. They had a unique connection that was evident from the beginning of the story, and made me want to learn more and more about them individually as well as together. The supporting characters and additional subplots also kept the story entertaining. Whether it be the town bigot or the ex fiancé, it seems as if both men had plenty to deal with. This added an element to the story that helped to bring these characters together, as well as kept them apart at times. It created a more dynamic and realistic story line. This is my first story of this series, but it most certainly will not be the last." -- Peppermint, Long and Short Reviews

4.5 SWEET PEAS: "Susan Laine’s third book in the COWBOYS OF SNOW LAKE series is a redemption of the bad boy story. MENDING FENCES is about more than mending fences (and that term has a specific meaning to this book). It’s about mending broken hearts, damaged minds, and shattered bodies. Clayton was accidentally outed as a gay cowboy on the rodeo circuit. Unfortunately, it took place in front of his fiancé, causing her untold embarrassment and heartache. Her brother Kyle comes to her defense, but goes beyond that and begins regular sessions of beating up Clay. Finally, Jesse rescues Clay. He picks up the pieces after a particularly harsh beating and takes Clay home with him. It turns out Jesse, who is only a couple of years older than Clay, has had the hots for Clay for 20 years, and therefore has kept an eye on the bad boy, sometimes locking him up in jail, sometimes looking the other way. Now, here’s the really hot part of their blossoming relationship… Jesse is a Dom and Clay is a submissive. It takes a while to get to the point Clay is completely comfortable with that. In fact, it takes the whole book for Clay to think that he is worthy of such a wonderful man as Jesse. Jesse is indeed kind and stalwart, but he is a Dom and he is a sheriff, so his word is law. Top from the bottom? Not gonna have it. I really enjoyed this book. In fact, it is my favorite of all of the Cowboys of Snow Lake series. I recommend it for those who like m/m romance, relatively gentle bdsm (not much more than stern words, orgasm denial, and spanking), and two men who truly deserve each other, in the kindest sense of that term." -- Mrs. Condit, Mrs. Condit and Friends Read Books

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Excerpt

STORY EXCERPT

 

“Miserable piece of shit! You deserve to fucking die!”

The words spat at Clayton didn’t hurt even half as much as the right hook that connected with his jaw. A swift, shallow punch aimed at his gut had him doubling over, falling to his knees and struggling for breath. Winded as he was, his vision blurred, and the fierce slap on his head that sent his white cowboy hat flying didn’t exactly improve his dazed condition.

Kyle Weston grabbed the lapels of Clayton’s denim jacket and yanked him up on his trembling feet, growling mere inches away from his face, Kyle’s teeth flashing in the dark of night under the high-up glow of the street lamp. “Fucking faggot! I ought to kill you for what you did!”

Fighting the urge to defend himself, Clayton knew he couldn’t. He’d hurt Shelly too much already. Getting into a fistfight with her brother was likely to only make matters worse.

The sound of a nearing car engine reached Clayton’s ears faintly through the roar of his blood. It was apparently enough for Kyle, who pushed him on the ground hard with a disgusted look on his face and spat at his feet. His expression was that of a man who was about to shout more obscenities or kick his ass, but instead, he glanced toward the road where the headlights of the car emerged past the bend and quickly made his way to his truck parked not far away.

Just barely missing Clayton on the ground, Kyle sped away in his truck, leaving Clayton on the ground, hugging his aching body. With every labored breath he took, pain shot through him crisp and clear, and he couldn’t find the strength to stand up. His jaw hurt, as did the rest of his face, and the taste of blood in his mouth washed away the slightly yeasty, familiar flavor of beer he’d had earlier at Billy’s bar.

Shaking all over from the violent confrontation, his vision still fuzzy, Clayton didn’t immediately register the car that had pulled over, the headlights shining directly at him.

It was only when a gentle hand landed on his shoulder that he realized he wasn’t alone.

Peering up through the haziness, tears, sweat, and blood, he saw a big figure looming over him. Flinching, he muttered bitterly, a little afraid since he wouldn’t survive another beating so soon, “If you want to take a wailing at me, too, take a fucking number. As is, I won’t be able to give you my A-game at the moment.”

“Jesus Christ, they really did a number on you this time, Clay.”

The gruff voice was less steady than it usually was, but Clayton recognized the familiar cadence he’d heard more than he’d have liked in his rowdy lifetime. Trying to stand up and failing when the pain made him fall back down on his ass on the gravelly side street, he tried to simultaneously shove the man aside because Jesse Brown was the last man on earth Clayton wanted to see. Not like this, he groaned inwardly. But escaping that grip was like trying to stubbornly decide not to breathe until neither industry fumes nor cigarette smoke existed in a perfect, sweet-scented world. Basically, no hope at all of succeeding.

“Don’t be an ass, Clay,” the man admonished sternly. “Don’t you think you’ve pissed off enough people for one night?”

Even through the pain, Clayton smirked. “Always room for one more.”

The man sneered. “You’re coming with me—”

“The hell I am!” Clayton protested vehemently, again attempting to get away from the man in front of him, swatting the arm away as hard as he could—which in his present state wasn’t tough enough to block a five-year-old.

The chuckle that followed was low and dangerous. “It’s either me, Clay, or I’ll call the ambulance to take you the hospital. And then I’ll make this embarrassing skirmish into a huge deal for everyone concerned. Your choice.”

“Fuck you.” Clayton prayed to God he’d have enough strength left within to help him stand long enough to walk away.

“All right then, man. The bus it is.” Shrugging, the man turned around on his heels and started walking back toward the squad car.

Clayton couldn’t let him get away. “Wait, goddamn it.” The man stopped and waited, and Clayton knew he was out of options. Sighing, defeated, he said quietly, “I’ll go with you.”

“That’s better,” the man said, and there was satisfaction and amusement in his voice. Clayton hated hearing it, but he was out of luck. If Sheriff Jesse Brown wanted to get Clayton Jennings, the small town of Snow Lake’s present favorite scapegoat and indiscriminate spittoon, into trouble, he could do so without much effort. Winding his unsurprisingly strong arm around Clayton’s waist and holding up most of his weight, Jesse lifted him off the ground. “Easy now,” he said encouragingly and worriedly when Clayton hissed in pain.

“Yeah, thanks for that amazingly crap-tastic piece of advice,” Clayton huffed angrily. He didn’t want to go anywhere with Jesse Brown. Wasn’t it enough that the last month had been a nonstop shit fest aimed at him, but now he had to contend with the good sheriff’s pity, too?

Jesse chuckled. “Well, since you’re capable of such sparkling wit, at least your jaw wasn’t blown out of alignment.” Oh, that amused, mocking tone nearly had Clayton gagging.

Growling and mumbling something incoherent, Clayton allowed himself to be led to the car and gently placed on the front passenger seat. Every part of his body was at odds with him as his muscles, tendons, and bones protested being moved around. He just wanted to lie down on a soft bed, or crawl into a hole, fester, and die. When he was finally seated, he let out a long sigh—but then the sharp slashing pain in his ribs cut through the relaxation, and again he felt like crap.

Mostly unaware of the car ride, Clayton slipped in and out of consciousness, his body seeking the comfort of passing out, but the jerky motions of the car when driving over a bump or a pothole shot pain through him every time. He wondered in passing if Jesse heard how badly he was groaning in pain, but if he did, he never said a word. Good old Jesse. Always so cool and composed.

Fuck him.

When the car stopped and Jesse cut the engine, Clayton dared a peep through his squinted eyes. Right away, even without his normally functioning eye sight, he knew he wasn’t home.

He was at Jesse’s home.

 

ADULT EXCERPT

 

“Over here, honey. Don’t want to keep the door open. All the heat will escape.”

Drooling, Clayton blinked out of his daze and looked up to see Jesse grinning at him, holding the stall door ajar. Blushing—and simultaneously surprised over his boyish, virginal reaction—Clayton went into the shower. Jesse closed the door, and then there was only wet flesh, hot steam, and a snug chamber of privacy.

Like every day for the past two weeks, Jesse washed Clayton’s body, taking his time with every inch, and just like every time, Clayton got a raging hard-on, unable to control his body’s responses to the nearness of the man who awakened his desire. Two weeks’ worth of pent-up frustration was taking its toll. Jesse’s soaped-up hand fisted his shaft and moved up and down until Clayton was writhing in pleasure, closing his eyes to not miss a single physical sensation.

“Wash me.”

All his nerve-endings buzzing and his skin tingling, it took Clayton a moment to grasp that Jesse had stopped and was standing in front of him with the soaped-up loofah in his extended hand. Clayton took it meekly, not thinking about how slavish he might’ve looked. Appearances didn’t matter because he was finally going to have Jesse’s body all to himself, to study, to admire, to explore, to touch.

His fingertips danced along the thick muscular ridges of Jesse’s contours, swirling in his chest hairs, skimming along bones and tendons. He knew he should’ve been washing the man up more than engaging in this leisurely study of Jesse’s figure, and expected Jesse would soon cut him off of his intoxicating drug of choice.

“It’s all right, babe. You can touch.”

Still reading my every waking thought and daydream, huh? Clayton anticipated growling, but to his own surprise, no words, no utterances, no sounds of any kind came out, and he stood still in place, massaging Jesse with his hands and the loofah.

Being given free permission to trace the wide expanses of stout flesh and sturdy muscle, Clayton let his fingers roam and his eyes wander. More brawny goodness welcomed him wherever he went. Rinsing the suds away as he proceeded, Clayton saw Jesse’s skin glisten clean and wet, increasing his appetite to a ferocious level. Though the hot steam and the misty veil of the spray kept his own skin moist, he licked his dry lips hungrily.

Jesse grinned. “Suck me, sweetheart.”

Clayton’s conscious mind barely registered the command when he’d already dropped to his knees in front of Jesse, the sponge forgotten on the floor. The stout thighs before him were beefy and powerful, and Clayton ran his hands over the quivering muscles there, almost mesmerized. He’d been with beefcakes before, but Jesse was au naturel in his masculinity. A true thing of beauty. Jesse turned down the faucet, and the shower spray became a warm vapor landing on Clayton, covering him like a sheen of sweat.

His hands ran up and down the robust legs and thighs, kneading the strong calves and the bulging quads, all sprinkled with dark hair. Clayton had less hair on his body, and his skin was silky, apart from the scars, as opposed to Jesse’s velvety smooth surface that had no skin deformities, practically begging to be stroked and massaged.

Suddenly, a harsh tug on his hair forced him to look up. Jesse’s brown eyes had darkened to black with lust. “I told you what to do. Now suck me. Don’t make me tell you again.” His tone was domineering and dangerous. Clayton had a perverse desire to find out what the man would do if his orders weren’t met, but at the moment, he had to have Jesse’s dick, the feel and the taste, and he didn’t care if he dislodged his jaw trying to stuff that monstrous cock into his mouth.

Nodding, he rested his palms over Jesse’s firm thighs, and his gaze zeroed in on Jesse’s cock in front of him. Long and thick, it jutted upward toward his belly button, the tip curving ever so slightly to the left. Brown-hued, the veins running along it pulsated with his heartbeat, echoing Clayton’s own hunger. Now that the scent of soap had washed away with the running water, the scent of tangy pre-cum invaded his nostrils, and aroused, he inhaled deeply.

Clayton wanted to show Jesse how good he was at giving blow jobs. So good, in fact, that the man would decide to keep him around indefinitely. With that goal in mind, Clayton licked his lips, crept closer, and gave the massive cock a tentative lick from base to tip.

Jesse didn’t move or make a sound.

Discouraged and deflated, Clayton wondered what he’d done wrong to not elicit even a tiny reaction from Jesse. He thought about asking, but shame created a dam in his throat, preventing any and all utterances from moving past it.

Then Jesse’s right hand rested on Clayton’s head, caressing the wet strands, massaging the scalp tenderly—and ever so slightly nudging him forward to take his cock in deeper.

 

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