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Out of the Ashes (MM)

A Forever Home 1

Siren-BookStrand, Inc.

Heat Rating: SCORCHING
Word Count: 50,851
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[Siren Classic ManLove: Erotic Alternative Romance, M/M, HEA]

Being the victim of a high school bully has left a bitter taste for his hometown in Joe Bowman's mouth. But after a bad breakup, Joe decides moving back home is his only option. He’s not there a day before his past comes crashing into him. He learns his best friend is now dating his high school tormentor, and runs into the one man he thought was always out of his reach. Little does Joe know Jackson McGhee's been harboring secrets of his own.

After the death of his mother, Jackson returns to Kearney, Missouri, to try and regain that sense of familiarity he had in his youth. Taking a job with the local fire department brings him face-to-face with the one person he can never have. Joe lives in the open while Jackson hides in the shadows. When push comes to shove, Jackson needs to decide if living a lie is worth losing the love of his life.

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Professional Reviews

4 ANGELS: "Joe Bowman had a horrible time in high school. He was picked on after Randy, one of the school jocks, labeled him a gay. If it wasn't for his best friend Liz, Joe wouldn't of have had anyone on his side. Joe had a crush on Jackson, a friend of Randy's, who didn't get involved in the abuse, but he never attempted to stop it either. Joe moved away as soon as he graduated, building a new life until he found out his boyfriend was cheating on him. Joe decided to move back home, much to his parents delight. Joe is happy to see his parents and can't wait to see Liz again. When Joe goes to the fire station with his dad to visit, he learns that to new guy is his old crush Jackson. He is flabbergasted when Jackson happily agrees with his father's suggestion to meet with him later. Joe gets a vibe from Jackson that his interest is more than platonic, but he isn't gay, or could he be? When Joe meets with Liz, he is shocked to learn that her boyfriend is none other than his nemesis Randy. Joe's return home opens up old wounds, but will he find a love that he never expected? This story shows how bullying can affect a victim long after others have moved on. It was understandable how Joe reacted when he first saw Randy years later. The way Liz tried to protect Joe's feelings was nice of her, but in reality, it was very misplaced. As a victim of bullying myself, I understand how he was feeling and it is best to acknowledge it up front. Randy, and even Jackson, believed that their behavior was just childish pranks and that it was left behind as they grew up, but this was proved to be incorrect when they how realized how Liz and Joe really felt about it. Jackson thought Randy would never accept him being gay so he kept it hidden, which became a habit until he met Joe again, forcing him to reevaluate his life. The love between Joe and Jackson was beautiful, but is it strong enough to overcome the difficulties ahead?" -- Teresa, Fallen Angel Reviews

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Excerpt

STORY EXCERPT

 

Knowing the way by heart, Joe didn’t bother to look up as he walked down the hallway. Too caught up in his e-mail, he was caught off guard when he walked right into a solid, firm, warm wall that hadn’t been there ten years ago. He bounced back and heard a soft oomph coming from in front of him.

“I’m so sorry. I didn’t see you there,” a deep male voice said as strong hands landed on his shoulders to steady him.

“No, it’s my fault. I wasn’t looking where I was going.” Joe looked up, and his heart stopped. Heat kept through his body and he became light-headed. Standing before him was Jackson McGhee.

“Hey are you okay?” Jackson eyed him warily.

Joe absentmindedly nodded his head. What was Jackson doing here? He would have figured the man would have moved far away from Kearney. Last he remembered Jackson had gotten a scholarship to play baseball somewhere in Texas…

Just then his father’s words came back to him in a rush. He said a firefighter transferring from Texas and had referred to the man as McGhee. Fuck!

“I’m…I’m fine. Thank you,” Joe stuttered out. What were the odds his high school crush would have moved back to the same town as Joe at the same freaking time?

“Do I know you?” Jackson eyed Joe up and down and Joe felt his cheeks begin to flush.

“We—” Joe started to explain when he was interrupted.

“McGhee, Kyle Bowman,” his dad said as he came up behind Joe and held his hand out to Jackson. “I see you met my son here.” His dad slapped his free hand on Joe’s back.

Joe saw the instant the light clicked on for Jackson. “Little Joey Bowman?”

He wanted to roll his eyes at Jackson’s words. What is it with everyone calling me fucking Joey? And I’m not little. “I prefer Joe.”

“Yeah, that’s what I meant.” Jackson held his hand out for Joe to shake.

“You two know each other?” Kyle asked.

“We went to school together,” Jackson answered for him. Joe was still holding on to Jackson’s warm, rough hand trying desperately to make his hand let go.

“Small world,” Kyle said as he looked back to Joe. “Joe just moved back here yesterday. You two should hang out and catch up.”

Joe wanted to yell at his father for suggesting such a thing. No way in hell would he be spending time with Jackson. He’d probably pop a boner the first time they were alone together, and there was the whole not-being-friends-in-high-school. They had nothing in common, and no matter how attracted Joe was to him, he didn’t feel like rehashing old times with a man who didn’t even know he existed in high school.

Jackson’s released his hand. “Yeah, we should. I think I’d like that.” A small smile lit up Jackson face.

Joe just nodded his head. He was a little flabbergasted that Jackson would even agree to such a thing.

“Great. Now, Jackson, let’s go over a few things and I’ll show you around.” Kyle turned to him. “You going to be okay, son?”

“Sure, Dad,” Joe ground out through clenched teeth. His annoyance level had hit its limit. “I’ll just be in your office checking my e-mail.”

Joe excused himself and went to his dad’s office. He walked a little quicker down the hall than he intended, but he had to get out of the presence of Jackson McGhee. The man still was as gorgeous as the day he first laid eyes on him. His dark hair was cut short to his scalp and his square jaw had a light dusting of stubble marring his cheeks, the same color as the hair on his head.

Then there was the way his company-issued blue cotton T-shirt stretched across his broad chest with the firefighters insignia on his left pec. The taut muscles of his abdomen were apparent through the material. Joe so wanted to reach out and run his fingers along the dips and valleys that made up Jackson’s chest.

The slight bulge hidden behind Jackson’s zipper didn’t go unnoticed, either. Joe wished he had the courage to glance back over his shoulder to get the back view of Jackson’s ass as he stood there talking to Joe’s father. But he was a coward and couldn’t force his head to turn to the side.

When he neared his father’s office door, Joe pushed it open and flopped down into the chair behind the desk. Joe scraped a hand down his face in an attempt to erase the image of Jackson from his mind, but it was useless. Joe still yearned to know what it would be like to be held in those strong arms, to be the center of the man’s whole world.

“Right, like that would ever happen,” Joe mumbled to himself.

Joe slid his finger across his cell phone screen and accessed his e-mail. As he went through his messages, he couldn’t help the anger building in his gut. He couldn’t comprehend why he was attracted to men who either were unable to be faithful or men who were straight. Joe felt resolved to just give up on dating and finding love because the way his life was going he was destined to be alone.

But then again Jackson didn’t seem upset or disgusted at seeing him, and he even agreed to talk later. Said he’d like that. How was Joe supposed to interpret that? Knowing his luck Jackson just offered to be friendly because Joe’s father was his new boss.

Joe laid his phone on the desk then rested his head on the cool, hard surface. His head had begun to throb as his mind went back to the one memory that still had his heart melting toward Jackson. He was most definitely out of Joe’s reach, but there was a time he thought maybe just maybe they could have at least been friends.

 

ADULT EXCERPT

 

Before Jackson knew what was happening, Joey tackled him. Jackson found himself pushed up against the opposite wall with a mouthful of Joey and the man’s body wrapped around his like a boa constrictor. And god, it felt glorious.

The initial shock wore off, and Jackson dropped his hands to grab at the firm globes of Joey’s ass. He captured Joey’s whimpers with his mouth as he kneaded the hard tissue, loving the way it tensed and shook as he roamed his hands over the muscle.

He let Joey have control of the kiss for a moment longer then took over. He sucked and nipped at Joey’s juicy tongue. Their bodies moved in sync as they rubbed their hard cocks against one another. Jackson could feel the tightening in his balls. He needed to slow down before he came in his boxers.

Jackson pulled back from the kiss. “I take it that’s a good thing?”

“Oh god, yes.”

Joey dived back in for more. Wanting to take this out of the hallway, Jackson lifted up on Joey’s legs until he wrapped them around Jackson hips. He carried Joey back to his bedroom then gently laid him down on the mattress.

He rested his weight on his elbows as he hovered over Joey, enjoying the teasing caresses of tongue and lips. The kiss went from sensual to forest fire out of control. He needed more from Joey, so much more.

Jackson sat up on his heels and pushed Joey’s shirt up his chest and over his head. He let his eyes take in the creamy white skin that covered the fit and trim body beneath him. Joey’s rose-tinted nipples stood erect, begging to be sucked on.

Not wanting to waste another minute, Jackson bowed his head and laved the pebbled peak in his saliva, rolling the tip between his teeth.

“Jackson,” Joey mumbled as his head thrashed from side to side.

Jackson looked up through his eyelashes and watched Joey. The man was on the edge, and he wanted nothing more than to push Joey from his comfort zone and make the man come harder than he had ever done before.

“What, baby?” Jackson trailed a hand down to the waist of Joey’s briefs, feeling the dampness through the cotton. “Tell me what you want, Joey.”

Joey’s hand fell to Jackson wrist and squeezed tight. “If I have to tell you, then you don’t have a clue what you’re doing.”

Taken off guard by Joey’s outburst, the smaller man was able to roll them over until he sat straddling Jackson’s legs.

“Don’t get me wrong. I love to be asked what I want, but I also like to have the control.” A devilish grin curled Joey’s upper lip. He scooted back enough to yank Jackson’s boxers down his thighs.

“Fuck, you’re hot.” Joey gasped as he started to stroke Jackson’s heavy cock.

His hips thrust up into the warm cavern Joey’s hand made. The grunts and groans he heard coming from himself sounded foreign to his ears. Never had another man been able to pull such emotion from him before.

“Oh you like it when I do this, do you?” Jackson could only nod his head. His eyes were clamped shut. “Then I bet you’d really love this.”

Jackson’s eyes shot open as the moist heat of Joey’s mouth encircled his leaking dick. When he hummed around the head, Jackson thought for sure he’d blow right there. The smooth tongue traced lines up and down his cock leaving a burning trail in its path.

He fisted his hands in Joey’s hair, holding him at the desired location. Joey giggled around his girth but never lost the suction. His body began to shudder when Joey grabbed his ball sac and fondled the orbs between his fingers.

The blinding, tingling sensation wove its way through Jackson’s body signaling his release was near. He so desperately wanted to finish in Joey’s wicked little mouth, but he wanted to come together with the man. To have that one moment when their hearts beat as one. A connection between one another that couldn’t be denied.

Jackson leaned forward and grabbed Joey from under his arms.

“Hey,” Joey whined as he was yanked away from his tasty treat. “I was busy doing something.”

“I know.” Jackson smiled at Joey as he shoved his tongue down the man’s throat. He could taste his pre-cum in Joey’s mouth. “But I want to come together.”

Joey’s eyes rounded into the size of saucers as Jackson fisted both their dicks in his large hand. Both tips oozed juices from the tip, but it wasn’t enough to offset the friction.

“Lick my hand.” Jackson held his hand up to Joey’s mouth and waited.

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