Chris Roberts believed two tours in Afghanistan was more than enough to prepare him for his new job in the Secret Service. After all, babysitting the son of the president of the United States is a walk in the park compared to a warzone, right? Well, it might have been if his protectee hadn’t been Jamie Barratt, America’s new sweetheart in need of an attitude adjustment.
Isolated in the Hamptons as Jamie recovers from hospitalization, an unlikely friendship forms between the two when they find common ground. Chris’s professionalism slips as he gets to know the real Jamie Barratt and friendship quickly snowballs into sex, romance, and, very probably, love.
Everything is perfect in their own little bubble, as long as the president doesn’t find out.
By the time they got back to the house, it was like the whole incident had never happened. Jamie watched as Chris locked and bolted the door and enabled the security alarm. Boomer raced past them both and curled up on the rug in the hallway, making them step over him in order to move into the kitchen.
“First Son secure,” he said into his radio before removing his earpiece and placing it on the kitchen counter while Jamie went to the cupboard for a bottle of bourbon and two glasses. He started to laugh as he set all three on the counter and unscrewed the bottle cap. “What?” Chris asked, raising an eyebrow.
"First Son? Man, that's so lame! Don’t I get a fun code name?"
Chris grinned as he watched Jamie pour a decent measure of bourbon into each glass.
“Blame Foster,” he replied. Jamie offered him a glass and he hesitated. “I’m not sure I should have that.”
It was full dark by now but still not particularly late. They had been out all day, but Chris still felt like he should be working. Jamie shrugged and grinned at him.
“It’s just us now,” he said quietly. “No need to try and fool anybody.”
Chris looked from Jamie to the glass in his hand and back again.
“Screw it,” he replied, reaching to take the bourbon with one hand whilst loosening his tie and unfastening the top button on his shirt with the other.
They sat at the counter for a while, just talking to each other. Chris had missed out on the group activity that day, so he took the opportunity to ask Jamie about it, to find out about his friends, who they were, how long they had known each other. It turned out that Jamie had dated the girl named Victoria for one summer and they had lost their virginity to each other at fifteen.
Chris felt a flash of something that felt ever so slightly like jealousy but put it down to the second glass of bourbon. Jamie had been drinking champagne for half the afternoon and was now at the stage where he was almost moving in slow motion. His eyes were bright and unfocussed in the orangey light of the kitchen, his smile wider than normal. Chris liked him this way. Jamie caught him staring.
“What is it?”
“Nothing ...” Chris said with a smile, swirling the last sip of bourbon around in the glass. “You just ... kinda suit being a little tipsy.”
“Are you flirting with me, Chris?” Jamie chuckled, his grin playful and mischievous.
“Do you want me to be?”
It was out of his mouth before he could even think about stopping it.
Jamie stilled, his smile slipping slightly as he looked at Chris and bit his bottom lip, worrying it between his teeth for a moment. Then he started to laugh and pushed his empty glass away from him.
“I think,” he said slowly, pushing himself up from the chair, “I should probably go to bed, before I come up with an incredibly inappropriate response that is likely to constitute sexual harassment.” Jamie smiled and began to walk backwards unsteadily. “G’night, Chris.”
Chris watched Jamie walk away and climb up the stairs with Boomer following him, casting glances over his shoulder until he disappeared from sight. The second he did, Chris’s head fell forward onto the countertop, and he groaned.
What the hell was he thinking?