“Did your card game get so boring you decided to make it your mission to visit young people in the hospital?” Jimmy was astonished that sniping comment had just come out of his mouth.
Roman didn’t say a word. Dark blue eyes stared at Jimmy until he shifted around and started picking at the blanket covering his legs. The silence continued, and Jimmy scrambled to figure out how he could backtrack the whole non-conversation.
“I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have said that. What are you doing here?” There, he’d apologized and had been polite. Now, if the man would quit making him feel like a bug pinned to the wall, maybe his breathing would start returning to normal.
Silence reigned in the room, and Roman didn’t move a muscle. Finally, just when Jimmy was going to apologize for breathing too hard, Roman spoke, “What’s the last thing you remember?”
Jimmy took a few moments to think about that question. There had to be an answer he could say out loud somewhere. There was no way he could tell Roman the truth. Jimmy had purposely sat at a machine where he could watch Roman play cards and admire his shoulders and handsome face. The air of authority and confidence that surrounded the man had Jimmy half hard at all times. It was a constant battle to keep reminding himself that Roman was an asshole.
“I remember the slot machine landing on a heart, club, and bar sign,” Jimmy answered. He had told the truth, somewhat.
Roman raised one thick eyebrow but didn’t say anything. Jimmy was starting to hate this waiting game Roman seemed to be an expert at playing.
“Look, I answered your question. Now answer mine. What are you doing here?” Jimmy demanded.
“You asked me to be here,” Roman said with a slight smile.
The man was good. Jimmy couldn’t figure out how Roman knew he hadn’t answered his question in a totally truthful way. But he did. Roman’s cryptic answer and that superior snarky smile proved that.
Jimmy gave up. He would take on Roman another day. It was time to make peace. “The doctor’s said I had ingested Rohypnol. Does anyone know how that could have happened?”
“They suspect a serial rapist paid off the waitress who brought you a drink while you were playing that slot machine,” Roman answered.
Jimmy’s mind and body recoiled at the thought of what could have happened. “How…” That was all he managed to get out.
“A friend of mine and I intervened when he tried to take you away,” Roman said. His jaw was clenched, telling Jimmy the man was not pleased.
“Thank you,” Jimmy said. “And thank your friend for me.”
Roman smirked, and Jimmy’s blood pressure rose. Okay, he may have emphasized the word friend. But he was curious at what kind of friend this was to Roman.
“Simmer down, little bit. Cade is my new boss, and he has a partner who will take on anybody who thinks about getting too close,” Roman said.
“Little bit? Really?” Jimmy retorted. His man card and upbringing forced him to object. Secretly, he was preening that Roman cared enough to give him a nickname.
“I suggest you deal with it. The name isn’t going to change any time soon,” Roman replied.
Jimmy laid his head back against the pillow and studied Roman. Beyond the guy’s good looks, he could see the man had intelligence, honor, and a huge drive. The question was, did it outweigh the arrogance and being an asshole?
“You better add demanding, dominating, and possessive to that list forming in your mind,” Roman said.
“What the hell? How do you keep reading my mind?” Jimmy asked. “Cut it out.”
Roman chuckled before saying, “Your face is like an open book. It tells me everything you’re thinking.”
“No one has ever said that before,” Jimmy said.
“Maybe it’s just me,” Roman replied, shrugging his massive shoulders.
Again they were at a stalemate. Jimmy was starting to wonder if they were destined to forever have friction between them. That sucked because, even with his body fucked up from the drugs running through his system, it was still reacting to Roman’s presence.
Roman stood, crossed the room, and pulled a chair away from the wall before setting it next to Jimmy’s bed. After sitting down, Roman picked up Jimmy’s hand and laced their fingers together.
“Close your eyes and rest, little bit. Things will be better, I promise,” Roman instructed.
Jimmy wanted to know how Roman could make a promise like that. But the man’s warm hand holding his calmed the anxiety that had been building inside. Before he could form another sentence, the lure of following Roman’s instructions and closing his eyes pulled at him. Jimmy drifted off into a warm cocoon where all concerns and problems faded away.
“Jimmy, honey, calm down. We can work this out. We’ll take a few days away from everything, just you and me.” Carson put his hands on Jimmy’s shoulders.
Oh hell no. Roman straightened up and started across the room. Jimmy raised his arms and knocked Carson’s hands away.
“Don’t you touch me,” Jimmy yelled.
Roman moved his body between the two men, making sure he was facing Carson. Looking down, he captured the stupid man’s complete attention. “Leave.”
He had to give the man some credit for having a few brains when he paled and edged sideways, fumbling for the doorknob. Years of practice and Jimmy’s warm hands on Roman’s back were the only thing keeping the deadly side of Roman under control.
Flipping back the locking lever, Roman opened the door before grabbing Carson’s shoulder and pushing him out into the hall. Roman followed, firmly shutting the door behind him.
Before Carson could react, Roman had the man against the wall of the hallway with an arm across his throat Roman put his lips next to Carson’s ear and, in a voice as hard as steel, said, “Go back to the ranch and pack up your things. I don’t care what excuses you use. Just don’t involve Jimmy or his family in any way. Your days in the Earls’ lives are over. If I get wind that you are anywhere near them, your life will be over.”
Roman pushed his arm harder against Carson’s throat to emphasise his warning..
Stepping back, Roman watched the cowboy scurry down the hall toward the elevator. Satisfaction filled him knowing the man was out of Jimmy’s life.
Back in the room Roman found Jimmy sitting on the bed taking off his shoes. Searching light green eyes traveled over Roman starting at his shoulders and ending near his feet. Roman wasn’t certain if he was looking for blood, injuries, or what.
“You didn’t get to finish your meal. Would you like me to order room service?” Jimmy asked.
Roman shrugged one shoulder. “Maybe later.”
Jimmy pulled off his socks and dropped them on top of his shoes. “Is he still alive?”
Roman moved until he was standing in front of Jimmy. He spread his legs a little and put his hands on his hips. Their eyes locked together for a long moment in silent communication. “For now.”
Jimmy pulled off his shirt and threw it on the floor. Roman took his shirt off and tossed on top of Jimmy’s.
After opening the button and zipper, Jimmy scooted up the bed, leaving his pants and underwear behind. Roman dropped his slacks onto the floor and climbed on the bed in only his boxer-briefs.
While crawling onto the bed, he admired Jimmy’s deeply tanned body, liking the white skin that looked as if Jimmy was wearing a pair of skimpy see-through shorts.
In one move, Roman flipped Jimmy over. His already hard cock lengthened more at the sight of Jimmy’s pale, bare, heart-shaped ass. It was more perfect than Roman had imagined. All kinds of thoughts of what he wanted to do with it raced through his mind.
Leaning down, he licked one cheek, from the crevice of Jimmy’s thigh over the plump flesh to the small of Jimmy’s back. To Roman, Jimmy’s skin tasted exquisite, and he proceeded to lick the smaller man’s entire cheek before sucking a bruise up.
“Roman, did you just mark me?” Jimmy asked, looking over his shoulder.
“Yep,” Roman answered before pulling up another mark. The two bruises looked so pretty he decided the other cheek needed a couple of its own.
Jimmy’s body trembled, and he began to rub his hips against the bed. Roman flipped him over and saw a wet patch of pre-cum coating the smaller man’s stomach.
“No coming,” Roman ordered.
Jimmy’s pretty green eyes widened before he reached down and grabbed his cock. “But, Roman, I have a fast recovery,” he argued.
“No coming until I say you can,” Roman stated.
The snort Jimmy let out wasn’t attractive, and neither was the sarcasm in his reply. “Good luck with that.”
Roman crawled farther up the bed, trapping Jimmy under his body while he reached into the drawer of the side table. He ignored the inquisitive fingers tracing the muscles of his abs. Pulling the zipper open on his small toiletry case, he took out a leather cock ring.
Jimmy’s green-eyed gaze zeroed in on the ring in his hand. “Roman, I don’t think… I’ve never.”
“That’s okay,” he replied as he secured it around Jimmy’s cock and balls. “I have.”
Lifting his head off the mattress, Jimmy looked down and began touching the skin around the tight ring. Roman didn’t give Jimmy much time to explore before he flipped Jimmy back onto his stomach.
“Hey,” Jimmy objected.
“Quiet, I’m busy,” Roman retorted before licking another path over Jimmy’s butt cheek.
“Bossy bastard,” Jimmy muttered.
Roman knew if Jimmy saw his face right now the small man would be backtracking like crazy. The dominating, possessive man inside of Roman had decided to come out and play.
One big hand came down hard on the still-wet butt cheek. Roman loved the way it jiggled and became pink. He didn’t like the way Jimmy hollered and kicked his legs.
Roman gave Jimmy’s cheek another swift, hard slap. “Knock it off, little bit. I’m not stopping any time soon.”
“Can we talk about this?” Jimmy asked, his breath coming out in short pants.
“No,” Roman responded and spanked Jimmy’s beautiful ass two more times. By now it was turning a lovely shade of red, beckoning Roman to taste it.