Brandon Silver knows there’s more to life than dealing blackjack at the Bellagio Casino. He hopes his lover, Seth Cahill, can help him experience more of the world. Seth does this by showing him how to run an easy scam. They target an older woman, Brandon distracts her, and Seth takes advantage of her distraction by robbing her. It seems like an easy enough plan.
Except they target Caryn Westbrook. A woman with her own agenda. At the top of her agenda is to teach the two young men a lesson they will never forget.
Laughing, Seth squirmed beneath Brandon's body until he was settled on his back, gazing up. Brandon's sharp beauty always silenced him for that first instant when they came up close and personal. His long, angular face mirrored the lean lines of his body, all corners and harsh edges, from the slant of his cheekbones to slash of his long nose. The entire effect was softened by the full, sensual mouth, the same mouth that tortured Seth's days and nights. He went and parked himself at Brandon's table nearly every night, just to be in his vicinity, even though touching him was off-limits. Having him only inches away was sheer bliss.
"You don't really want to see some stupid necklace, do you?" he taunted.
"Not anymore," Brandon murmured before kissing him. He tasted like the virgin piña coladas he favored, and something else that Seth couldn't quite identify. Every time Brandon kissed him, he melted, forgetting about the everything that wasn't his mouth. He was so caught up in the way Brandon's tongue slid between his lips that he didn't notice what Brandon's hand was doing. Not until the he felt the diamonds sliding from his palm.
"Hey!" He caught Brandon's wrist, though he didn't try to take the necklace back. "Who taught you that trick?"
"You did." Brandon braced himself up with one arm and held the necklace up to the light. Each diamond sparkled and danced, reflecting a scattering of rainbows across his face. "Wow. This is gorgeous. How much is it worth?"
"Retail? Probably forty, forty-five thousand. On the black market? Maybe half that."
"Why would it be half that?"
"Because it's stolen property. A fence is going to want to make a profit from it, and most of them will insist on a big cut for it to be worth the risk."
"Well, that sucks." Brandon skimmed his mouth across Seth's cheek. "Get anything else?"
The notion of his Brandon going all greedy made him laugh. "That's not enough for you?"
"It's more than enough. I was just wondering if you made good use of the hour window I made sure you had."
"As good of use as you did." Seth nosed along Brandon's jaw, inhaling the foreign, musky scent. "You must've had fun. She's all over you."
"We had a good time. She wanted me to meet her again after I got off my shift."
Images of Brandon tangled up with the woman heated Seth's blood even further. "And you were worried you wouldn't be able to do this. I told you, you were a natural."
"I was never worried about the sex part. It was everything leading up to that."
"And yet, she liked you enough to want to spend more time with you. So clearly, I was right, and you were wrong, and the sooner you accept that, the happier we'll all be." To punctuate his point, he nipped at Brandon's neck.
"Hmm, is that what you want me to say? Okay. You were right, I was wrong, and I'll never doubt you again."
His head flopped back onto the bed. "But it was okay, right? You're not having second thoughts or anything?"
"It was okay. I'm not sure if I have second thoughts. She seemed really nice." Brandon settled on his side, his leg still draped over Seth, his hand absently moving up and down Seth's chest. "And I feel a bit like a jerk."
That was mostly what Seth was afraid of. This was the life Seth had known for almost ten years. He had little qualms stealing from people who made more money doing absolutely nothing than those who slaved double shifts and holidays just to make ends meet. Anyone with such conspicuous consumption deserved whatever they got.
But Brandon, at heart, was a good person. Much better than Seth. More moral. It was part of why Seth adored him so much, but it was also the one thing that might get in their way.
"Why do you feel like a jerk?" he asked carefully. "If it's because of the necklace, don't. She had more diamonds than Elizabeth Taylor."
"I don't know. I felt like she liked me ... which is dumb, since she was probably just trolling for tail."
"You gave her exactly what she was looking for, exactly what she wanted. Why feel bad about it? I'll bet she doesn't even miss the necklace. That's why I only took the one piece. It's still worth the time, but odds are, she won't even notice until she flies home to wherever she comes from. And then, she'll probably blame the hotel staff, or the airplane crew, or anybody else but the gorgeous young thing who bought her a drink at the Bellagio."
"I guess you're right again." Brandon gripped Seth's hip and pulled him closer. "You know, I don't think you ever told me. Where did you learn how to be such a smooth talker?"
"It's my one natural talent." Taking the necklace from Brandon's hand, he tossed it behind them onto the bed and turned into his body. He reached around to cup Brandon's ass, squeezing it in hungry appreciation. "Well, maybe not my one."
"I love your natural talents," Brandon said, hooking Seth's chin with his finger. As soon as their lips met again, Seth knew they were done talking for the foreseeable future. His fingers flexed on Brandon's ass, pulling a low moan from Brandon's chest, and he knew exactly what his lover wanted. His erection pressed into Seth's thigh, and his hand went to the back of Seth's neck, cupping him gently, holding him securely.