Glen had prepared himself for this moment. It was too bad nothing could have totally prepared him for this moment.
Some would describe the man before him as Glen’s best friend. But they would be wrong. Since they had met when Glen was a senior in college, Lonnie had been his rock, his lifeline, and the person who had made his soul weep for what it couldn’t have.
That wasn’t really a fair assessment. Glen’s decisions were his to bear, not to blame Lonnie for.
Glen opened his mouth to say something, but velvety brown eyes captured his gaze. The black glasses Lonnie wore didn’t diminish their richness.
Lonnie blinked, and his gaze grew hard. Glen mentally stiffened his resolve to take whatever Lonnie threw at him. He deserved the man’s anger after the way he’d run like a scared rabbit from their last meeting. There was no excuse good enough for refusing to see Lonnie after that. The one phone call later had ended with Glen’s heart breaking after learning Lonnie was taken.
“Ranch life must agree with you, Glen.” Lonnie’s gaze swept over Glen, leaving prickles in their wake. “You’re looking healthy and strong.”
Glen didn’t know what to say. Strong was never a word anyone would associate with him. Luckily Jack burst through the front door with his arms full of luggage. Glen rushed forward and grabbed the garment bag before it crashed to the floor. Beside him, Lonnie snagged the computer case.
“I couldn’t find it, but I’m sure there’s a kitchen sink in here somewhere,” Jack teased .
Lonnie laughed and shrugged, bringing Glen’s attention to the high-quality blue polo shirt he’d matched with faded designer jeans that sported strategically placed holes. In the dictionary, under the word clotheshorse, there was a picture of Lonnie. But it was the person under the clothes that fascinated Glen. In moments of weakness, Glen wondered how much of Lonnie’s body was covered by the multicolored tattoos he could see peeking out of the edges of the material. He seemed to gain more every year.
“I originally planned for a week, but decided to pack a little extra in case it took longer,” Lonnie replied.
“If you want to follow me, I’ll show you which room is yours.” Jack smiled at Lonnie and then Glen. Turning, Jack headed across the spacious living room, with its beam-lined cathedral ceiling and the wall of windows that brought the outside in. Through a small archway, they went down a short hall that led to the bedrooms.
Carrying the garment bag, Glen followed Lonnie and Jack. Behind him, Brian called out. “When you have things settled, come to the kitchen for a light snack. The girls should be home from school soon.”
Glen glanced over his shoulder and replied, “Will do.”
He hesitated at the looks of sheer glee on Stephanie’s and Brian’s faces. Glen frowned. Nothing good came of smiles that wide and bodies practically vibrating in place. Once all the babies were in bed for the night, he was confronting his children and finding out what they were up to.
In the bedroom, Glen laid the garment bag on the huge king-sized bed. He appreciated that Brian and Jack had put Lonnie in this room with its modern highly polished black furniture and stark lines. This was Lonnie’s taste all the way while Glen’s style ran more with the golden-oak four-poster bed and matching dressers in his room across the hall.
“There you go, Lonnie.” Jack put his hand on Lonnie’s shoulder. “Take a few minutes to decompress. We’ll all be in the kitchen.”
Glen thought about following Jack out of the room, but one look at the raised eyebrow and stink eye Lonnie was sending him nixed that idea.
As an expert in avoiding explosive situations, Glen asked, “How was your flight?”
“Nice try,” Lonnie countered. “Would you like to know what I think of the weather too?”
Glen dropped his gaze to the floor. Maybe it would be better if he just went back to Texas.
“Oh no, you don’t.” Lonnie’s voice was suddenly much nearer. “There’s no need to hide anymore.”
Hands grabbed Glen’s shoulders and gently pushed him backward. Glen looked up, startled by Lonnie’s firm tone and manhandling. In the past, Lonnie had always been calm and gentle, except for the incident when Glen had run away from their kiss. Lonnie’s shouts still rang though Glen’s memory.
Glen was brought up short by the wall against his back. Lonnie continued to move forward until their bodies were pressed together.
Firm lips covered Glen’s mouth. A tongue probed between his lips, parting them. Glen had forgotten the connection a kiss could bring. Lifting his hands, Glen laid them on Lonnie’s chest and let the man take over.
Nerves got the better of Glen, and he started shifting his weight from one foot to the other.
“Don’t chicken out now, Glen.” One of Lonnie’s eyebrows lifted. Glen wondered how long ago he had it pierced. The slim silver ring wasn’t there on his last visit to Florida, just the round black posts in his ears.
“Fine. The first rule is no lying. We have to be truthful at all times to each other.” Now that Glen was making demands, it wasn’t as freeing as he’d thought it would be. These were things he really needed, but demanding them, instead of discussing, didn’t seem right.
Lonnie’s gaze was soft with understanding, and his smile put Glen at ease. He reached out his hand, palm up, but didn’t say anything.
Glen looked down at that hand and then up at Lonnie’s face. With total trust, he placed his hand in Lonnie’s. For some reason, it felt as if he was placing his life in Lonnie’s hands, and it wasn’t frightening at all.
Lonnie led Glen over to the bed, and they both sat down, still holding hands.
“I agree,” Lonnie stated. “There will not be any lies between us. But”—Lonnie held up his index finger with the letters H and L tattooed on it—“I refuse to answer when you ask what I’m getting you for Christmas.”
Glen couldn’t stop the chuckle that spilled from his lips. In the end, Lonnie always made him laugh. But they still had things to discuss.
“No cheating, Lonnie,” Glen stated. He looked down at their joined hands, unable to look at Lonnie’s face. “It hurt when you called and we talked for hours, only to find out you were living with someone.”
“I missed you,” Lonnie admitted. “Let me first say that, when you refused to let me visit you when you got sick, that hurt. I knew something was wrong when you were in Florida that last time. After you had left, I worried, and it turned out I was right to be troubled.” Lonnie’s smile was sad, and Glen had to force himself not to hug the man. “I called just to say hi and to see how well you had recovered from your heart attack. As we talked, it turned into the old times of just you and me. Reality hit me in the face when Timothy came into the room and said something. By the time I got my wits together, you’d hung up on me. I’m sorry.”
Glen let Lonnie pull him into his arms. He hugged Lonnie close and rested his cheek on his shoulder. “Do you know what it’s like to live with someone you can never trust? At times, I became someone I didn’t know.”
“You can trust me,” Lonnie said. “You know we already love each other. We have since college. Now we will build the trust and live happily ever after.”
“I don’t know if I believe it’s possible to be happy for that long, but I’m willing to try.” Glen lifted his head and gazed into Lonnie’s brown eyes. Home was in their depths.
The two continued to look at each other. Slowly Lonnie’s brown eyes started to sparkle, and his lips formed a wide smile.
At first Glen froze. He figured his eyes were as large as saucers in his shock. But then the fun of the old days kicked in. Glen hands might not move as fast as when he was twenty, but his clothes were lying on the floor next to Lonnie’s in minutes.
Lonnie pulled back the bed covers, and they both dived in. Glen got another shock as his bare skin touched the contours of Lonnie’s body. It didn’t make sense, but it felt too good.
“Lonnie, my body isn’t like it was when we were in college,” he warned.
Lonnie laughed and dropped a quick kiss on Glen’s lips. “Ah, love, neither of us is. I don’t need a toned or muscled body. I need you.”
Their lips met and rubbed together. Lonnie licked Glen’s bottom lip, and Glen returned the caress. Glen closed his eyes when the kiss deepened and let the sensations of being connected to someone else overtake him. This time, he needed to taste and pressed his tongue in the seam of Lonnie’s lips.
A hand cupped Glen’s left ass cheek. Glen’s eyes popped open, and his gaze slammed into Lonnie’s.
“You still have a tight, round hiney, love,” Lonnie stated.
Glen frowned. “Are you laughing at me?”
“Nope, I’m enjoying every moment of our reunion.” The hand on Glen’s ass began an erotic caress. Fingers slipped into Glen’s crack and brushed against his hole.
Glen clenched his butt cheeks together. “Lonnie, I’m not sure I’m ready for that.”
“I didn’t expect you to be.” Lonnie traced his lips along the edge of Glen’s jaw. “But that doesn’t mean I won’t touch you. Learn your body.”
Glen liked that idea. Tipping his head, he gave Lonnie access to the side of his neck. The man must have remembered his weakness because he began to kiss, suck, and nip at the sensitive skin. Shivers raced over Glen’s skin, and he began to move his body against Lonnie’s.
The more Lonnie continued his ministrations to Glen’s neck, the deeper he sank into a place where there was only Lonnie and what he was doing to him. Glen’s dick, which had been half hard, filled with blood. The tip brushed against Lonnie’s flat belly before it bumped into the warm flesh of Lonnie’s cock.
Glen opened his eyes and looked down past the multitude of tattoos covering Lonnie’s chest and belly. In his dreams, he remembered what that huge member had looked like years ago. But that was all it had been, dreams.