Sweet Refuge (MM)

Midnight Falls 8

Siren-BookStrand, Inc.

Heat Rating: Sextreme
Word Count: 27,059
5 Ratings (4.0)

[Siren Publishing: The Lynn Hagen ManLove Collection: Erotic Romance, Contemporary, Alternative, Paranormal, Shape-shifters, Suspense, MM, HEA]

Run out of the last town he called home, Laith is hesitant to reveal he’s gay when he moves to Midnight Falls. Unfortunately, his new landlord is the most gorgeous man Laith’s has laid eyes on. Tillman is sweet, kind, and a little overprotective of a guy Laith just met. When Laith’s ex-boyfriend shows up at his door, Laith panics. It’s Daniel’s father who ran Laith out of town, and now daddy dearest wants Laith dead.

Tillman is smitten with Laith from the moment they meet. Even better, Laith is his mate. But Laith is running from something. Tillman just knows it. When Laith reveals that he was beaten for being gay, Tillman sees red. When Laith’s ex shows up, Tillman wants to kill Daniel. But not all is what it seems. Tillman doesn’t trust Daniel, yet Laith extends Daniel an olive branch. Until Daniel’s father shows up, hellbent on ending Laith for corrupting his son.

Lynn Hagen is a Siren-exclusive author.

Sweet Refuge (MM)
5 Ratings (4.0)

Sweet Refuge (MM)

Midnight Falls 8

Siren-BookStrand, Inc.

Heat Rating: Sextreme
Word Count: 27,059
5 Ratings (4.0)
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Cover Art by Jess Buffett


“Everything okay?”

Laith screamed and jumped at the sound of Tillman behind him.

“Sorry,” Tillman said. “I didn’t mean to scare you.”

“It was just an aggravating call.” Laith quickly looked away before he drew attention to the two men who were smiling at each other like they didn’t have a care in the world.

Laith idolized them. He’d dreamed of himself and Daniel being that way in public. Stop it. You and Daniel are over. Move on.

“I was wondering, since you skipped eating today, if you wanted to go have dinner with me at the diner.”

“You have a store to run,” Laith said just as his stomach grumbled loudly.

Tillman laughed. “That’s it. I’m taking you to dinner. It’s on me.”

“I can pay for myself.” He didn’t want to owe anyone anything. Laith had been like that his entire life. He saved every penny he could, and right now, he had a nice nest egg from his work. Paying for his own dinner wasn’t going to break him.

“I’ll pay. It’s my official way of welcoming you to town, cub.” Tillman walked over and locked the door to The Sugar Well before pocketing his keys. “Besides, I’m starving and could really use the company.”

“If you haven’t noticed, I’m not a cub.” Did Tillman think that Laith was a hairy little twink? Did he think that Laith was gay? So far, things had been going just fine in Midnight Falls. He really liked the town and didn’t want to move away if anyone found out he preferred men.

But that couple that had walked out of the diner made Laith question what kind of town he’d moved to. He was just too afraid to bring them up. Laith was just starting out here and didn’t want to rock the boat.

Laith hesitated but then nodded. He could use the company of a friendly face and a good meal.

“Okay,” he said. “Let’s go to the diner.”

As they walked, Laith glanced at the couple that had exited the diner earlier. They were still holding hands, laughing and talking as they strolled down the street. Laith felt a pang of jealousy in his chest. He wished he could be so open about his feelings, but he knew that wasn’t possible with Daniel.

They reached the diner, and Tillman held the door open for Laith. The smell of burgers and fries filled the air, making Laith’s stomach growl even louder. They took a seat at the counter, and Tillman ordered them both a burger and fries.

As they waited for their food, Laith felt a little more at ease. Tillman was easy to talk to, and he seemed genuinely interested in getting to know him. They talked about everything from music to books to movies, and Laith found himself laughing and smiling more than he had in a long time.

When their food arrived, Laith dug in with enthusiasm. The burger was juicy and flavorful, and the fries were crispy and salty. He moaned in pleasure as he ate, making Tillman chuckle.

“I take it you like the food.”

“It’s delicious,” he said, swallowing his bite. “I haven’t had a good burger in a while.”

Tillman grinned. “I’m glad you’re enjoying it. I come here all the time, and the food never disappoints.”

The more Laith talked with Tillman, the more Daniel faded into the background. “I’m surprised you’re eating burgers and fries.”

“Why?” Tillman asked.

Laith waved a hand at him. “You’re so buff. I thought guys like you watched what you ate.”

“Guys like me?” Tillman asked.

“Gym-aholics,” Laith clarified. “You know, the whole ‘my body is a temple’ thing.”

Tillman chuckled. “Believe it or not, this body isn’t from a gym. I’m all natural.”

Laith gaped at him. Was Tillman just messing with him? “No guy is born that chiseled.”

Tillman had to be lying. He was the epitome of workouts. His arms were the size of most men’s thighs. Laith bet two of his thighs put together still wouldn’t reach the circumference of Tillman’s biceps.

“I’ll take that as a compliment.” He frowned. “You really think I’m lying?”

Laith just shrugged. He wasn’t sure what to think, especially since he didn’t know Tillman all that well. A lot of guys lied about themselves when meeting someone. Laith couldn’t count how many times he’d caught dates fabricating some story that wasn’t even true.

That had been before he’d met Daniel.

Stop thinking about him.

“Roman,” Tillman called out in a deep, rich voice that Laith could listen to all day. Hell, he’d listen to Tillman read a boring ass science paper and think the topic was fascinating because it was Tillman who was reading it.  

The cook popped his head out of the order window, and Laith’s jaw went slack. Roman was freaking gorgeous. He had the darkest blue eyes Laith had ever seen, and wavy blond hair that made his eyes pop. The guy also looked tall as shit, unless he was standing on something. “What?”

“Did I get this body from a gym?” Tillman asked.

“No,” Roman said. “You stole it off some dead guy. Any other useless thing you want to ask me, or can I get back to cooking?”

“You’re no goddamn help,” Tillman called out.

“My goal in life,” Roman replied before he disappeared.

Laith snickered at the exchange. “He’s funny.”

“Damn pussycat gets on my last nerve,” Tillman grumbled. “He’s lucky he’s an expert cook because he has no sense of humor.”

“I don’t know.” Laith smiled. “His comedic timing is amazing.”

Tillman furrowed his brows. “You think he’s funny?”

“Hilarious.” Laith chuckled. “He didn’t miss a beat.”

As they continued to eat, Laith noticed the way Tillman’s muscles rippled with each movement. It was almost mesmerizing. Laith had never met anyone quite like Tillman before. He was kind, funny, and had a body that most men would kill for.

“So, Laith,” Tillman said, breaking the silence, “what made you move to Midnight Falls?”

Laith shrugged, taking a sip of his drink. “I just needed a change of pace, I guess.”

He refused to elaborate any further. One, his past was too damn painful. Two, he didn’t want Tillman to know that he was gay. Laith knew that was an irrational fear since he was in a new town, but he’d only been attacked a little over a week ago and that fear still held him hostage.

“Ah, and the mystery deepens,” Tillman said.

“What mystery?” Laith asked. “I needed a change of scenery. End of story.”

“Okay.” Tillman nodded. “I get it. No talking about what brought you here.”

Not if Laith wanted to stay in Midnight Falls. Not if he didn’t want to get chased out of another town.




“Ease up on the hug before you crack a few ribs,” Laith grunted.

“Sorry.” Tillman loosened his hold but was still enveloping him. “I just want you to know you can be who you are here.”

“Thanks.” God, the guy smelled so damn good.

Laith allowed himself to relax in Tillman’s embrace, feeling truly safe for the first time in a long while. He rested his head on Tillman’s broad chest, breathing in his woodsy scent.

“I’m glad I found my way here,” Laith said softly. “Never thought I’d feel this accepted.”

Tillman gently rubbed Laith’s back. “Well, you just let me know if anyone gives you trouble. I’ll take care of it.”

Laith chuckled. “My knight in shining armor.”

He felt Tillman press a kiss to the top of his head. “You’re goddamn right. No one messes with someone I care about.”

“You care about me?” Laith’s heart swelled at those words. He tilted his head back to look up at Tillman, his striking eyes full of warmth. Before Laith even realized what he was doing, he leaned up and kissed him.

Tillman made a surprised sound but instantly responded, kissing Laith back firmly. Laith slid his hands up Tillman’s chest and wrapped his arms around his neck, losing himself in the feel and taste of Tillman’s mouth.

When they finally broke for air, both men were panting.

“Well, that was unexpected,” Tillman said, a slow smile spreading across his face.

“Sorry, I got a little carried away,” Laith said, his cheeks flushed.

“Don’t apologize. I liked it. A lot.” Tillman brushed his thumb over Laith’s kiss-swollen lower lip. “In fact, feel free to get carried away anytime.”

Laith grinned up at him. He hadn't felt this happy in a long time. He had found a home, and possibly more. He leaned up and initiated another kiss, this time more confidently, deepening it as their tongues met in an intimate dance. His heart beat wildly in anticipation as he explored the contours of Tillman’s mouth, his growing arousal straining against his jeans.

Tillman groaned low in his throat, his grip on Laith tightening. “Do you want to take this to the bedroom?” he growled against Laith’s ear before nipping the sensitive skin right below his lobe.

Laith’s eyes widened at the jolt that coursed through him. Oh, he couldn’t have agreed more. He nodded mutely, already standing up and pulling Tillman by the hand toward his bedroom. They practically tripped over each other in their haste to reach the bed.

Tillman pushed the door shut behind them and then spun Laith around to press him against the wall. Their mouths crashed together once more, their kisses feverish and desperate. Fabric rustled as they impatiently tugged at each other’s clothes. Laith’s shirt was the first to go, closely followed by Tillman’s. He gasped as Tillman’s bare chest came into contact with his. Heated skin on heated skin sent delicious shivers up his spine.

Tillman’s hands roamed over Laith’s body, exploring every inch of him as if memorizing each curve and dip. Laith moaned out loud when a strong, calloused hand gripped his erection through his jeans, squeezing firmly. “God, you feel so hard for me,” Tillman purred in his ear before nipping the sensitive skin there.

This had to be a dream. There was no way he had Tillman in his bedroom, seeming just as desperate for Laith as Laith was for him.

Laith brushed his hand down Tillman’s abdomen until his fingers touched the waistband of the guy’s pants. They hovered near the snap as Laith swallowed hard. “I–I want to taste you.” He felt his face heating up at his blunt statement.

Tillman’s abdomen jerked. “Go ahead.” He guided Laith’s hand to his trapped erection. Laith squeezed, making Tillman groan. He tried unfastening the man’s jeans, but Laith was too damn excited and couldn’t seem to get his hands to work.

Tillman finally had mercy on Laith when he unsnapped his pants, pulling the zipper all the way down. The metal-on-metal sound seemed to amplify in Laith’s ears.

Tillman shoved his jeans all the way down his legs. His thick fingers wrapped around the base of his cock. Laith could see now that Tillman wanted him on his knees.

Before Laith could lower himself, Tillman grabbed a pillow from the bed and dropped it down at his feet. Laith wanted to say something witty, but nothing came to mind as he stared at the hard cock in Tillman’s hand.

With his heart beating faster, Laith lowered his knees to the pillow. He was now staring directly at the head. Small glistening beads of pre-cum were escaping from the slit. The strong, manly scent filled Laith’s lungs.

“Taste me.”

Laith could hear the desire in the man’s voice. He licked his lips seductively before opening his mouth to take in the head. Tillman moaned softly as Laith’s tongue swirled around the tip, drawing him deeper into his mouth with each sensual suck.

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