Rufus Jennison was at a transition in his life. Soon to be laid off, thirty-five and recently single, Rufus knew something needed to change before he threw up his hands and gave up on any hope of happiness. Stockton ‘Stocky’ Hastings was also on his own and his self-esteem was in the gutter. ‘Stocky’ was his nickname for a reason. He didn’t think a guy like Rufus would even consider him a date, let alone a mate. Stockton was wrong. Two men- both with hidden insecurities and self-doubt find strength in each other. But unfortunately it comes with the games. The Games Men Play.
He parked on the street in front of the house and before he brought all of his equipment inside, he headed to the front door. A deep inhale for courage and a last effort of tucking in his shirt, then quickly untucking it so it hid his stomach, and Stockton rang the doorbell.
A rushed looking Rufus answered.
The surge to Stockton’s groin at the sight of him wasn’t something he could prevent. “Hi.”
Rufus held open the door. “Thank you so much for making a special trip.”
“It’s my job. I don’t mind.” Stockton past Rufus to enter the living room. It was neat and clutter free. What he expected. Yet it didn’t drip of money. It appeared more like an average household. And Stockton had seen it all. From the hovels in Trotwood to the mansions of Centerville.
“This way.” Rufus seemed anxious. He led the way to a bathroom, stepping inside and pointing, shifting his weight from leg to leg.
Stockton picked up the broken piece. “Yup. Exactly what I figured. I brought a selection. You want to take a look?”
Stockton returned to the front door, wondering if Rufus thought his ass was huge in the shorts he was wearing. He was already hot from the outside humidity and air temperature, but his own paranoia was making him warmer.
He stood at his truck and yanked open the bed, climbing on to show Rufus what he had brought. “This one is the top of the line.”
Rufus took the box from him, resting it on the truck and opening the flap. “Nice.”
Stockton recoiled as he remembered, ‘Nisssss!’ from yesterday.
“You okay?” Rufus noticed his odd expression.
“Huh? Yeah.” He reached for another box. “I like this one too.” While Rufus inspected it, Stockton gave him a good once over. He could see all the solid muscles in Rufus’ arms, the roundness of his chest under his polo shirt, his narrow waist. Stockton was in heat, and also knew Rufus was way out of his league. And straight, dumb-ass!
“Will they fit?”
Stockton snapped back to attention. “Yes. They come standard. Those will fit your sink, no problem.”
“You mind replacing the whole thing? Today?”
“It’s my job.” Stockton laughed.
“I keep forgetting. You feel like a good friend.”
The smile dropped from Stockton’s face and he knew his cheeks went red. He avoided Rufus’s curious gaze. “Uh, so, if you don’t like either of those, we can head to the home store and pick out—”
“I like this one.”
“Yes. I’m sure.”
“You don’t have to take it just because I have it.”
Rufus tilted his head. “Should I not take it?”
“No. It’s a good one.” I’m an idiot. I’m an idiot.
Rufus handed it to him. “I like it.”
“Okay. Let me get some tools together.”
“I’ll take this in for you. Look, just tell me what you want me to do. I can be your assistant for the job. I’m completely incompetent, but I can help you carry things.”
Stockton broke out into a sweat. Not only was he hot, he was getting hot to trot. If he could tell Rufus what he wanted him to do, the list would be long, and very sensual.
“I got it.” Stockton slung a tool belt around his hips and hoisted a bucket with more items. He hopped down from the truck and closed the tailgate just as it began raining.
“You need to cover your rig?”
“No. It’s good.” Stockton stared at Rufus’s tight ass as he returned to the house. A perfect ten. That’s what this guy is. A perfect fucking ten.
“I hate this humidity.” Rufus placed the box with the new faucet on the bathroom vanity. “Do you remember it getting this humid before?”
“Yeah. Last year was a cold summer. I think we always get a hot humid few months.” Stockton opened the cabinet under the sink.
“Shit. I should have cleared that out.” Rufus knelt down and began removing the items underneath.
Rufus brushed shoulders with Stockton as he gathered the bath tissue and extra shampoo bottles into his arms. Stockton took a good inhale of Rufus’s cologne as he did. “I’ll just push it aside. Don’t worry.”
“No. I can get it.”
“Where’s your water main?”
His expression was so sweet, Stockton laughed. “Man. You are clueless with this stuff.”
“I am. How embarrassing.”
“I’ll find it. Where’s your laundry room?”
“I do know where that is.” Rufus gave Stockton a sly smile.
It sent the chills running up Stockton’s spine. Sexy. So incredibly sexy!