[Lynn Hagen ManLove Collection: Contemporary, Alternative, MM, HEA]
MR. MERCEDES THROWS A PARTY
Will has been dumped every Halloween for the past three years, so there was no way he was accepting the pink invitation stuck to his door. Unfortunately, his best friend Ezekiel wasn’t taking no for an answer. After badgering him nonstop to attend Randall Mercedes party, Will reluctantly gave in. And he was glad he did, because it was a night he would never forget.
A PIRATE’S BOUNTY
Ezekiel really thought he was dying when he entered the emergency room. He was in so much pain. But his agony was nothing compared to the guy next to him. Ezekiel snuck to the stranger’s bed and tried his best to comfort him. In return the stranger took him to Randall’s party where they found an empty room to scorch the sheets.
A TREASURE TO KEEP
After being stood up Chester wanted to drown his sorrows. Too bad he was sitting in a stinking coffee shop instead of a bar. But one free coffee later, and he was staring at the man of his dreams. Mr. Dreamy goes to Randall’s party as Chester’s date, and Chester’s luck finally turns around.
A SQUIRREL CHASING A NUT
Having an angst-ridden younger brother is no walk in the park. But after a car crash, being chased by a crazy man, and getting lost in the woods, they stumble upon a house where a stranger lends them his help. He also gave Brad a night of hot, passionate sex once they return from Randall’s party.
Lynn Hagen is a Siren-exclusive author.
MR. MERCEDES THROWS A PARTY
I crumpled the paper and let myself in, tossing the invitation in the kitchen trash. No sooner had I poured myself a glass of wine than someone was ringing my doorbell like he had the cops after him. He laid into it, never letting up until I answered.
“Why can’t you ring the doorbell like a normal person?” I asked my best friend when I let him in. “You should lay on it no longer than two seconds.”
Ezekiel waved a dismissive hand as he walked to the kitchen and helped himself to my boxed wine. “You would’ve ignored it and taken a bath. I wanted to talk to you about this year’s party.”
“I’m not going.” I pointed at the balled-up flyer in the trash. It was like a pink angry eye, looking at me, taunting me with the fact that I sucked when it came to love.
“I’ve got a solution.” Ezekiel flourished his hand as though he’d been holding a magic wand and was now using it to make me see reason. That would never happen. Although I was currently single, there was no way I would attend that party alone.
“I’m not in the mood, Ezekiel. I’ve had a long, hard day, and all I want to do is sink into a bath full of bubbles.”
“We could go together. I don’t have a date, either, but I don’t want to miss out on all the fun.” Ezekiel set his glass aside and grabbed my arm. “Come on, Will. Caleb Morgan will be there! He’s so dreamy I could just die.”
Caleb Morgan was the resident doctor on our cul-de-sac. Ezekiel was right. Caleb was so damn dreamy that he made my molars hurt. Every gay man on Sheffield Lane wanted a piece of the yummy doctor.
I didn’t have a shot at him with the way my luck went. The guy was charming, gorgeous, and, if you asked me, shy. He was polite, but he always looked as though he struggled to make small talk whenever I ran into him.
“I’m not going.” I headed down the hallway with my wineglass, already feeling the bubbles surrounding me. “Why don’t you take Chester?” I asked when I saw he was following me.
“Shut your mouth,” he said with a hiss. “I am not taking my cousin to a party. Besides, Chester and I had an argument.”
That wasn’t anything new. The two bickered all the time. If I hadn’t known them, I would’ve sworn they were a married couple from the way they argued nonstop.
“What was it about this time?” I set my glass on my dresser and grabbed some clothes. I couldn’t wait to get out of my work clothes. I had to admit I looked dashing in a suit, but I was ready for some lounge pants and a soft T-shirt.
Ezekiel flopped onto my bed, careful of his wineglass. He took a sip and rolled his eyes. “Because we both want to go to the party dressed as a dirty pirate. I told him he was too plump to pull it off, and he told me to apologize. I said I loved him no matter how he looked, but I was still being the pirate.” He looked me over. “Have you gotten a costume?”
“Yep. I’m dressing up as the man who isn’t attending the party.” I tossed my clothes aside and sat on the bed. “Now if you don’t mind, I’m going to get naked, and you’re not allowed to see my amazing body.”
With a shrug, I retrieved my things from the balcony then headed for the door. Disappointment filled me. I’d thought I’d had him pegged, but I guess I’d been wrong. It seemed another Halloween had shit on me. I really hated the fucking holiday.
This was why I should’ve stayed at home. I could’ve been curled up on my couch, sipping wine and flipping through the channels to find something to watch on TV.
Just as I reached for the handle, Randall curled a hand around my wrist and pulled me back. He took my tie from my arm and led me to the bed. Oh fuck. This was really happening. I was so stunned that my shirt and jacket fell to the floor.
Randall set the tie on the bed then removed his clothing. My jaw dropped as I stared at his thick and long cock. His erection was a thing of beauty.
He tilted his head to the side and smiled. “You like what you see?”
“Do I have a pulse?” I asked.
His grin widened. “I’m glad you approve.”
The smug bastard knew he looked good. He didn’t need anyone’s approval. Randall climbed onto his bed and grabbed the tie, sliding it over his eyes and tying it in place. “Now what?”
I had no clue. I was in over my head, so I did the only thing I could think of. I got naked then stood there like an idiot.
“I’m waiting,” he said.
“Nightstand drawer. Condoms are in there, too.”
I just bet he’d entertained many lovers and probably had a case of lube and condoms stored somewhere in the house. I shoved that thought aside as I grabbed what I needed before joining him on the bed.
“Give me your hand.”
When he did, I used the lube to wet his fingers. The clear liquid slid down his hand as I straddled his waist. I pressed my hands into his chest and leaned forward. “Stretch me.”
Randall had no problem finding my hole. His fingers touched my entrance, and a groan slipped from my throat. I eased back, impaling his fingers, hissing at how good they felt.
“Bounce on them,” he said.
I did as he asked, slowly, enjoying every damn second. When I was ready, I pulled off them, feeling empty. But not for long. I rolled the condom down his hard cock then said, “Keep your hands above your head. You’re not allowed to touch me.”
I had no flipping idea where my words were coming from. I’d never done this before, and I didn’t watch porn. The words just seemed to flow as Randall stretched his arms above his head. I should’ve had him grab some more ties so I could’ve secured his wrists to the headboard.
Where in the hell had that thought come from? Jeez, I was turning into someone I didn’t even know, but I liked it a lot.
A PIRATE’S BOUNTY
“Am I going to die?” I held my arm as pain throbbed down the right side of my body. I had no idea what was wrong with it, other than the constant agony I was suffering.
The ER nurse stared daftly at me. I didn’t like that look on her face. Just because I was being dramatic didn’t mean she couldn’t show some damn compassion. Weren’t nurses supposed to be nurturing and superman-level caregivers?
“Just sit tight, Mr. Rangel. Someone will be here to take you down to x-ray.”
“Which means you’ll be sitting here for the next five hours, Ezekiel,” my cousin Chester said under his breath. He wasn’t very good at whispering by the scowl on the nurse’s face before she walked away.
Chester took a seat in the hard plastic chair next to my tiny bed. A curtain separated me from my neighbors. From the voice I heard, the person on my left was a woman, and she had a small child with her. I wasn’t sure who the patient was, but I hoped it wasn’t the kid.
To my right some guy kept moaning, the sound swelling then receding every few minutes. Then he would cough, grunt, and start his moaning all over again.
I really hated hospitals. My pillow smelled funny, the bed crinkled every time I moved, and the overhead light was too damn bright. “Can you cut that light off for me?”
Chester got up and looked around as some doctor was paged over the hospital intercom. “I don’t see a switch,” Chester said. “Just shove a pillow over your face.” He smiled at me. “If you suffocate, at least you’re already in the emergency room.”
“You’re a real dickhead.” I wasn’t in the mood for jokes. Not when my arm really hurt.
Some guy stuck his head between the curtains. He was wearing white, so I assumed he was here to take me to x-ray.
His smile was bright, and he wasn’t bad-looking. Maybe I could turn this night around. Hey, the guy was semi-cute and had a job. That was more than I could say for my last boyfriend. Jared had been handsome, but he was one of those people who always found an excuse for why he’d quit yet another job. I couldn’t count how many times he’d begged me to pay one of his bills. It had gotten to the point where I’d turned my ringer off and pretended I wasn’t home, because not only was Jared lazy but he didn’t know what “it’s over” meant.
Thankfully I hadn’t heard from him in a month. He’d probably found someone else to mooch off of.
The guy stepped into my small space and looked around. He gave me a wider smile before he grabbed a thingy off the shelf behind me and walked away.
“What the hell was that about?” Chester asked. “He could’ve at least excused his intrusion.”
I sighed. Chester was right. This was gonna be a long night. Between the smells, the bright light, and the guy on my right moaning louder and louder, I was ready to walk out.
Until the pain in my arm intensified. I grabbed it and hissed, curling onto my side. Chester sat back down, pulling out his phone.
“Seriously?” I growled. “You’re gonna sit there on your phone while I’m in pain?”
Chester’s brows rose. “What do you want me to do, climb in the bed with you and rock you until the pain goes away?”
“It’s time.” He winked.
I thought we were about to get down and dirty, but he pressed his lips to mine, and I lost the ability to breathe. It was the sweetest kiss I’d ever been given. It wasn’t rushed or brutal. He cupped my face like he was really into me, his lips brushing over mine in the most sensual way. I was ready for fast and hard, but if Jacob wanted another speed, who was I to deny him?
“Do you think the host would be pissed if we used the bed?” Jacob grinned.
“I think as long as we make it back up when we’re done, he’ll never know. Besides, don’t people run off to bedrooms all the time during outrageous parties?”
Jacob bit his bottom lip and walked backward, holding my hand as he led me to the bed. Of course I had a condom and a packet of lube with me. I’d been holding out hope that I’d get lucky tonight.
“I can’t believe I’m about to sleep with a quarterback.” I snickered.
“And I can’t believe I’m about to steal a pirate’s booty.” We fell on the bed, cracking up. I liked the fact that Jacob wasn’t rushing things. He seemed just as content spending time with me, but seriously… we were gonna fuck.
I was glad he hadn’t worn shoulder pads or any other protective gear. The lack of would make getting to his body easier.
“You’re the first guy in a long time who has piqued my interest.” Jacob lay on his side on the soft bed, his head propped on his hand. “I still can’t believe you tried to rub my back.”
I lay on my side, too. We were facing each other. I shrugged. “I just felt so bad for you. I felt like I had to do something to ease your pain since those nurses were just sitting on their asses.”
“My little nursemaid.” He chuckled. “I need some tending to now.”
“Oh?” I played coy. “Does your back need rubbing?”
He shook his head. “Lower and around front.”
“Your belly?” I ran my hand over his silky shirt, reveling in how hard his abs were.
He dipped his head and stole a kiss. “Lower.”
I dipped my hand into the waistband of his pants, teasing the warm flesh and grinning because he had a happy trail. I loved a man with a happy trail.
“Lower.” His voice had gone deep and erotic. My heart picked up in pace as I dipped my hand into his pants and was shocked he didn’t have any underwear on. Clearly I hadn’t been the only one hoping to get laid.
I curled my fingers around his thick cock and squeezed. “Now what? Do you want me to rub your dick like I rubbed your back?”
He shook his head as he flipped onto his back. He tucked his hands behind his head and gazed at me. “You seized my vessel, pirate. So now you have to climb aboard my ship and find the treasure I’m hiding.”
A TREASURE TO KEEP
Brad walked behind the nurses’ station with his tool belt around his waist and started talking with one of the staff members. I worked quickly and got out of there, anxious for this evening.
At the end of my shift, I returned to the employee locker room to get out of my uniform. I groaned when I saw Larry and his buddies in there. I wasn’t going to let them spoil my good mood.
To my surprise, and delight, none of them said anything to me. I changed my clothes and got out of there like my ass was on fire.
Three hours later, I was at a Starbucks on Sternum Street. Starbucks. That was where Caleb had wanted to meet. I’d been here dozens of times before but never knew the address.
Even I knew a coffee date meant the other person could get out of there if things didn’t go so well on a first date.
And I still wasn’t convinced this was a date.
An hour later I realized it wasn’t because Caleb never showed. I’d tried to call him twice—no more than that because I didn’t want to seem desperate—but my calls dumped to his voice mail.
The barista behind the counter brought me another coffee. “I figured you’d want a refresher.”
I looked up at him in surprise. “Uh, thanks.”
He shrugged and took a seat across from me without an invite. I didn’t mind. It was better than sitting there by myself. “It’s on the house.”
The guy was nice-looking, not as gorgeous as Caleb but he had pretty blue eyes and wore a dirty-blond man bun. The look suited his features. He looked like one of those hipsters you’d see in a place like this. He appeared around six feet, although I was never any good at guessing a person’s height. But he was lean. Not athletic or anything, but he had a nice body.
He stuck his hand out. On his wrist was a leather bracelet. “I’m Vincent.”
I shook it. “Chester.”
“Well, Chester, what has you looking so down in the dumps?” He had his own coffee, so I figured he was on break. I shrugged, not willing to tell this stranger that I’d been stood up.
“Ah, I see.” He nodded. “Date didn’t show up?”
“You’re awfully nosy,” I said. I was being a prick because my feelings were hurt, even though Caleb never specifically said this was a date.
“Bad habit of mine,” Vincent said. “I should’ve been a bartender.”
That got a small chuckle out of me. “And I should’ve been born slimmer.”
Vincent looked me over. “Why?”
“Are you serious?” I wasn’t sure why, but talking to Vincent, a complete stranger, was kind of easy. When I opened my mouth again, all kinds of shit spilled out. “Look at me. Why would a doctor be interested in an overweight guy with a minimum wage job?”
“Because doctors are assholes,” Vincent said. “You’re not overweight, Chester. You’re just thick.”
“Is that what you kids are calling it these days?” I gave a wry laugh, although we looked the same age. Mid-twenties.
“I’m not sure about the kids, but I think you look sexy.” He winked. “Your doctor is an idiot for standing you up. I’d never do that to someone as good-looking as you.”
“Okay. I came, and I conquered. Can we go now?” Had I just seen glowing red eyes, or had that been my imagination? I was ready to bolt, but Vincent had other things in mind.
He pressed me against a tree. “Where’s your sense of adventure?”
“I left it on the front steps.” I slid my arms around his treasure chest, which wasn’t easy, by the way. Have you ever tried hugging a human-sized chest? It was like trying to put my arms around a coffee table.
“I can think of a way to take your mind off your fears.” Vincent gave me the sweetest smile, and there was no way in hell I could resist him. I also liked that he didn’t get all handsy. He stood there as if waiting for my permission.
I bit my lower lip. “And what did you have in mind, handsome?”
I heard a howl close by. That made me jump, but Vincent captured my lips, and I forgot about the noise. Mostly. I was still afraid, but he was doing an excellent job of helping me tune everything out.
Including my fear.
His hands slid around to cup my ass as he yanked me closer, devouring my lips then sliding his tongue into my mouth. I was in heaven and never wanted him to stop.
But we had to come up for air.
Vincent kissed his way around my jaw, and I groaned at how good it felt to have his lips on me.
“Keep making that sexy noise and I’m gonna take you right here, Chester.”
“Promise?” The word had come out of my mouth before I could catch it. I wasn’t taking it back, though.
His smile was devastating. “Now there’s the adventure I was looking for.”
I sobered. “You wanna have sex…now?”
In truth, I’d shoved a condom and packet of lube in the pocket of my trousers. A guy could dream.
Vincent took a step back. “Not if you don’t want to. I’ll totally respect your decision if you want to wait until we get to know each other better. We don’t have to rush into—”
I shoved my hand up his treasure chest and found the gold I wanted. I curled my fingers around his hard cock, which proved to me just how much he wanted me.
“Okay then,” he whimpered. He actually whimpered. “We’ll go with your plan instead.”
I didn’t have a plan. I was winging this shit. I might’ve been shy when asking a guy out, because more times than not I was politely turned down, but when it came to sex, my bashfulness melted away.
And damn, from the feel of his cock in my hand, Vincent had quite the package to offer. “This adventurous enough for you?”
Vincent fucked my fist. “God yes. Do you know how many times I thought of fucking you when I saw you come into the coffee shop? I’ve wanted you for some time, Chester.”
Those words thrilled me enough to make me drop to my knees. Vincent slid the lower half of his costume down, exposing himself to me. I sucked his fat cock into my mouth and twirled my tongue, inhaling his musky scent as he moaned. It was as though the primal impulses inside me were taking over.
A SQUIRREL CHASING A NUT
Yes, I was slightly afraid, but there was no way in hell I was telling him that. The woods appeared ominous, and I kept hearing small critter sounds. Of course my imagination turned them into fire-breathing demons from hell out to steal my soul.
Clarence turned back around. “You don’t need to worry about me. I’ve been doing just fine on my own.”
I frowned. “What does that mean?”
He stopped and spun around, his eyes narrowed. “You’re gonna seriously ask me that question?”
“I have no idea what you’re talking about,” I said with just as much brashness as he was giving me. “Tell me what the fuck I’ve done so wrong to you that you treat me like shit.”
“It doesn’t matter.” He started walking again. I had to jog to catch up to him, which wasn’t easy since I seemed to step on every tiny rock on the road. My feet were gonna be bleeding by the time I made it home.
I was also out of shape. The four and a half miles was gonna kick my ass.
“Talk to me, Clarence.” I grabbed his arm and pulled him to a stop. He yanked away and kept going. I had no idea what to do or say. He’d been like this since our father had passed away, but lately his defiance had been getting worse.
We slowed when a raggedy truck came toward us. The gears were grinding, and the truck was backfiring. It passed us then slowed. I looked at Clarence. He looked at me.
“No way I’m taking a ride from whoever’s driving,” he said.
The truck slowly backed up. The clouds moved on, and the moon shined down on us. From where I stood, I saw cages piled in the bed of the truck. The tires squeaked until the guy stopped right beside us.
“You fellas need a lift?”
Clarence grimaced, but I kept my displeasure hidden. The guy had a beard a mile long, missing teeth, and squinty eyes. He cackled when he looked me over. I’d forgotten I was wearing that dumbass costume.
“No, we’re good, Three Fingers,” Clarence said. He grabbed my arm and pulled me away, heading in the opposite direction of the stranger.”
“Why’d you call him that?” I asked.
“Character from the movie Wrong Turn,” my brother said. “That guy in the truck creeps me out.”
I completely agreed.
The truck took off down the road and disappeared. I hoped the next person who offered to help didn’t look like a horror film character. And what on earth was he doing with all those cages?
Clarence’s jaw dropped when he looked over his shoulder. I looked, too, and saw that truck heading back toward us. More like speeding toward us. The cages were bouncing in the bed, and the truck veered our way.
With a loud shriek, I took off into the woods, Clarence right beside me. My heart was in my throat, and my feet were being abused by the debris on the ground. But I didn’t stop to look back. I was too afraid to see if the old man was after us.
Clarence snatched my wrist and yanked me behind a large tree. We were panting like hell as my brother looked past me. “The truck is parked, but I don’t see the guy behind the wheel.”
What the fuck was going on? Why the hell was that old coot after us? I envisioned him incapacitating us and shoving us into those cages, though I highly doubted we would fit.
“We need to keep moving,” Clarence whispered.
This guy was a damn gem. “Do you still mentor?”
He nodded. “You should come to the youth center with me some time.” He smirked. “Wear your squirrel costume.”
“I’ve already mentally burned it.” I laughed.
“What about you?” he asked.
I told him about my dad, college, work, and Clarence. I planned on stopping by tomorrow evening to check on my little brother. We needed to strengthen our bond again. I hadn’t realized how much I’d failed him until tonight, and that weighed heavily on my mind.
“Sounds like a busy life.” Hank set the remote aside and pulled me into his side, careful not to spill my cider. “I’d like to be a part of that,” he said. “You seem like a great guy.”
“You do, too.” My bare skin against his had my heart pounding. I loved sinking into all those muscles. I leaned forward and set my mug on the coffee table then grabbed Hank’s and set it aside, as well.
I slid up his chest and took the kiss I’d been dying for since I first saw him. Hank’s hands pressed against my sides as he thrust his tongue into my mouth. The apple cider tasted better on Hank’s lips, and I lapped at them, so turned on I wanted to burst.
I kissed along his bearded jaw while I tweaked his nipples, eating up the moan that rumbled through his chest. It was as though I had my own personal bear. Hank’s chest had hair, and I teased the strands as I moved from his jaw, to his neck, then to his pecs.
He watched me with heavy-lidded eyes. Bedroom eyes. The green had grown darker as I used the tip of my tongue to circle the hard nub. Then I bit down, and a long, drawn-out hiss escaped him.
Clearly his nipples were ultra-sensitive, and I used that knowledge to torture him. But I needed more. His pants were still on, and I wanted them gone.
I stood and unfastened them, stripping them away as Hank gave a hearty laugh. The sound was deep, rich, and oh so masculine.
“That’s better,” I said. I’d even removed his underwear, and his thick cock slapped his stomach, a trail of clear liquid pooling at his navel. I lapped it up like a kitten needing cream, teasing his bellybutton with my tongue and lips.
“Go lower,” Hank groaned. “I need to feel your mouth on my dick.”
“Desperate?” I smirked.
“In the worst way,” he replied. Hank grabbed the base of his cock and levered his monster toward my mouth. His musky scent and the sight of his pre-cum were more than I could take.
I opened wide as he fed me his cock. His salty taste exploded across my tongue. I moved my lips up and down his cock, the head hitting the back of my throat. Hank pressed a hand to the back of my head and thrust upward in quick bursts. I swallowed his dick until my mouth was at the base then pulled back.