Sawyer (Torey Hope: The Later Years #2) (10 page)

BOOK: Sawyer (Torey Hope: The Later Years #2)
8.92Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

Mostly to himself, but loud enough under his cap that he knew the older man could hear, Sawyer taunted, “Mmmm, I’m thinking dinner at that steak place sounds good.” Sawyer wasn’t sure what his grandfather wanted to talk about, but he knew that it felt fantastic to be spending this time with him, even if it only lasted for a small amount of time before shit hit the proverbial fan.

About ten minutes later, Sawyer heard the captain rustle about in his chair, but he kept his eyes closed and the cap over his face. He figured that it may make it easier for the older man to speak if he wasn’t looking directly at him.

“Sawyer, my boy, I need to say some things. I hope you’ll let me speak without interruption, or I may not get this all out.” When Sawyer remained silent, Robert continued. “I owe you an apology for the words I spoke to you the other night. I’m sorry. I should have never said those things, and I realize they were hurtful. I never meant to hurt you.”

Sawyer swallowed thickly and squeezed tears from his eyes.
Thank you, Captain. You have no idea how much that means.

“I don’t know that I’ll ever be completely on board with you being gay. I think it will take me some time to accept the idea that this isn’t something you’ve chosen for yourself but the way you’ve always been. In the grand scheme of things, I don’t want to see you get hurt. I don’t think two men together is right, so it may take me a while to come around to seeing you with another man. But, none of my other grandkids blatantly make out with their significant others in front of me, so I doubt I’ll be seeing that from you either.”

Sawyer wasn’t sure if the captain was finished, so he waited it out just a bit.

“In the end, I just want you to know that I love you, and nothing will ever change that. We’ve had a difference of opinion on things before, and I’m sure we will many more times over the years, so this difference of opinion doesn’t have to come between us. I hope you can forgive me. I just want you to be happy boy.”

Sensing that was his chance to speak, Sawyer sat up and removed his cap.

“Thank you, Captain. Your words mean the world to me. When I thought I had lost you, lost this, I was crushed. Thank you for talking to me. I promise no making out in front of you. Now, Kendrick you may have to watch out for.” Sawyer smiled at his grandpa, and they both laughed, knowing Kendrick was the wild card of the bunch.

“So, that young man you introduced me to at The Center+, Luke? He as sweet on you as you are on him?” The captain blushed a bit as he spoke, his voice gruff.

“How do you know I’m…how do you know I like him?” Sawyer couldn’t bring himself to use his grandpa’s old-fashioned term.

“Boy, I may be old, but I wasn’t born yesterday. I’ve seen sparks from fireworks burn with less heat than the looks passing between the two of you. Always thought I’d see you look at a girl that way, but nevertheless, it’s clear the two of you have something for each other. That who you’re dating?” Now that the man had started talking, it seemed he didn’t want to stop.

“Nah, we’re just friends for now. There are some issues that have to be worked through, especially for Luke. Until then, I’ll just be his friend.” Sawyer spoke softly and his grandfather noted the disappointment.

“Well, starting off as friends is a good thing. That’s how it was for my Lois and me. And then your Grandma Janie was my friend long before I asked her out for the first time.” The man’s eyes lost their focus as his heart and mind traveled back in time. Clearing his throat, he regained his focus, “My advice to you, my boy, is don’t wait too long. You never know what the future holds, don’t wait to be happy until it’s too late.”

Sawyer nodded at him as the older man returned to his lounging position and pulled his fishing cap down over his eyes.

Understanding that their talk was over for the time being, Sawyer stretched out again and pulled his cap down. Beneath the hat, his eyes streamed tears and his face glowed under his smile. He had his grandpa back in his life.

At the end of the day, Sawyer had caught four fish to the captain’s three. They decided on beers and greasy burgers and fries at the local pub. They laughed about the ass kicking Robert was sure to get when Janie found out about the cholesterol laden meal.

Sawyer hugged his grandpa good-bye, “Thanks for the talk, Captain. I really appreciate it. I’m not going to say that everything will be easy from here on out, but it will be a whole lot easier knowing you’re all standing behind me.” With a final hug and
I love you
shared between the men, Robert headed home.

Sawyer climbed into his car. He pounded his fists against the steering wheel and shouted
with a fist pump into the air. He had known the captain’s reaction was weighing on him, but he hadn’t realized just how heavily. Having the man on his side made him feel damn near invincible. His heart raced, and his smile could have lit the entire town of Torey Hope. Feeling on top of the world, he knew there was only one person he wanted to share this with.




Luke stepped from the shower and wiped the mirror with his towel. Pulling on a pair of mesh basketball shorts, he ran the towel through his hair before heading to the kitchen. He had eaten supper at The Center+ before his last class, but the nervous energy reverberating inside of him had him wanting a snack. Grabbing a yogurt, he padded to the living room and pulled out his laptop. He had every intention of watching a movie until he couldn’t keep his eyes open.

His plans were interrupted by a knock on the door.

The sound gave him pause. He didn’t have many friends in Torey Hope, and he’d never told any of them where he lived. He had no idea who could be at his door. His heart beat wildly at the thought of who he
was on the other side of the door.
Stop. Why in the world would he come here? And how would he even know where you live?
The chastisement he gave himself did nothing to calm the heated reaction his body was having at the thought of Sawyer coming to see him.
You better hope it’s not him. Sawyer coming here would be a very bad thing. Very bad.

Reaching down to adjust himself in hopes of hiding his excitement, Luke laughed self-deprecatingly.
You idiot. Your luck it’s the old lady down the hall coming for a cup of sugar or to give you some cookies again. You’re going to look like a total perv opening the door with a hard-on.

As he swung the door open, his heart and mind battled over who they hoped it would be. His overjoyed heart won, and his disgruntled mind left the scene shaking its head in disbelief.




Sawyer stood outside of Luke’s door, hands on the frame, head down as he contemplated showing up on the man’s doorstep unannounced and uninvited. If he didn’t answer in the next ten seconds, Sawyer would just leave, and no one would be the wiser.

His head knew it would be best to turn around and go home, but his heart? His heart longed for Luke to open the door. He wanted to talk to him, spend time with him, be close to him.

Five, four, three, two, one…he should just go.

“Sawyer, is everything alright?”

Sawyer dragged his eyes from the tops of Luke’s bare feet up to his equally bare chest before forcing himself to focus on the sparkling blue eyes in front of him.

Luke took in the beautiful sight of Sawyer, leaning on his door frame, warm golden eyes watching him, and knew he was in trouble. When Sawyer pushed off the doorway, Luke sensed he was planning to leave. Knowing that was probably for the best, but not wanting it to happen, Luke stepped back in a silent invitation.

“Hey, man. Sorry, I know it’s getting late, and I shouldn’t have just popped up uninvited…” Sawyer spoke as if he was waiting on Luke to tell him to leave.

You really should just tell him to go home. Nothing good could come from this.
Luke’s head spoke loudly.

Your heart is beating faster, you want him here. You want to see just what could come from this. No matter what, wouldn’t it be nice to just have a friend to spend time with?
His heart chattered loudly, drowning out his head.

“No problem, man. You’re always welcome here.” Luke grabbed two waters and tossed one towards Sawyer. As both men took long swallows of their water they studied the other. Discarding their unfinished bottles on the counter, Luke walked to the living room.

Sawyer followed as his head spoke harshly,
Okay, you’re here. Now, what are you going to do?

“Hey, man, like I said, you’re always welcome to come by, but I’ve got two questions.” Luke smirked a bit as he spoke.

“Yeah? Ask away.” Sawyer couldn’t help the cockeyed grin he shot back.

“One, how did you know where I live? And, two, why are you here?” Luke wasn’t sure how to ask the questions without sounding blunt and to the point.

Continuing to smile, Sawyer chuckled and ran a hand through his caramel brown hair. Blushing slightly, eyes twinkling, he admitted, “Well, I
have looked at your application at work. And I
have done a drive-by to see the place for myself.” Letting his hand drop to the back of his neck, Sawyer huffed out, “Yeah, that sounds so much worse when I say it out loud.”

“Nah, it’s all good, man. I mean, who wouldn’t want their own private stalker?” Luke laughed as Sawyer’s cheeks pinked. “And you decided to pay me a visit…” He let the question hang on the air.

“Well, I had an awesome day with the captain, and when it was over the first person I thought to tell about it was you. I just wanted to share it. With you.” Sawyer finished lamely. “And, again, that sounds really pathetic when it’s spoken out loud. I’m sorry man; I was riding a high from getting my grandpa back, and I acted without thinking. I’ll leave you to your evening and just talk to you at work.” Sawyer started to turn toward the door.

The hand that snaked out to grab his wrist was an electrified lifeline; his heart stuttered and soared as the hand tugged him back around.

“Sawyer, wait.” Luke’s voiced was strained. “Stay.”

Sparks jumped between their bodies as they stood facing each other. Close enough to feel the heat from the other’s skin, but not touching.

“I’ve never had anyone want to spend time with me; no one has ever thought of me when they had something they wanted to share.” Reaching out and grasping Sawyer’s hand, Luke continued, “Thank you. It means a lot that you thought of me. Now, tell me all about your fishing trip with the captain.”

Pulling just hard enough on his hand to make Luke step forward a tiny bit, Sawyer leaned his forehead against Luke’s. “If I promise to tell you about it, and I promise not to take anything too far, can I do something first?” Sawyer’s gruff whisper was full of longing and hope.

Luke knew he should say no. But his heart and body wanted….wanted more, wanted Sawyer, wanted to feel what he’d never felt before. Breathing heavily, body trembling, Luke nodded his head and closed his eyes. He wanted to savor every moment of what Sawyer was going to do.

Hands skimmed up his torso, cupped his shoulders to pull him closer, and tangled in the curls at the nape of his neck. “I promise to go slow. I’ll stop when you need me to. I just need to taste you.” Sawyer’s lips hovered lightly over Luke’s as their heated breaths mingled.

For the rest of his life Luke would remember the unique scent of this man. His body craved, his mind fought, and his heart wept. Wept for what he knew could never be.

“Kiss me, Sawyer, but please don’t be mad when it can’t go anywhere from here.” Luke’s eyes glittered with tears. Tears over hurting Sawyer, tears for what he knew he was missing out on, and tears for what had been done to him. If it hadn’t been for his past, maybe he’d have some sort of future.

Warm lips touched his, and his entire world seemed to shift on its axis. As Sawyer’s tongue danced across his lips, Luke’s body molded to every hard plane of the man in front of him. He allowed his hands to roam across the rock hard chest. He had longed for this, for this man, for this touch for as long as he could remember. And in moments it would end. It had to end.

But you can enjoy it before it does.
His heart teased as his body reacted.

“Sawyer, I can’t let this happen. It’s not fair to you. It would be wrong for me to let it go on. You should find someone who can openly be with you, someone who doesn’t have a fucked up past.” His breath was heavy as he tried to get his body under control.

“How can you say this is wrong? Your mouth on mine doesn’t seem to think it’s wrong. Your hands all over my body don’t seem to think it’s wrong. That impressive heat between your legs doesn’t feel wrong.” With a fist gripping loosely in blond curly hair, Sawyer forced Luke’s sexy-as-sin mouth to tip up and crystal blue eyes to look at him. Flicking his tongue out to lick a perfect, soft bottom lip, he whispered, “How is this wrong?”

Hard hands pushed at Sawyer’s chest as he felt the thrust and retreat of hips against his own. Luke tried to fight him, but he was fighting his feelings and inner demons even harder. Sawyer’s strong hands cupped Luke’s face, foreheads pressed together, chests heaved with desire. With a deep groan Sawyer’s tongue swept Luke’s top lip and his teeth pulled at the bottom one.

BOOK: Sawyer (Torey Hope: The Later Years #2)
8.92Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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