Four: In the Life Indulgent
Jason sat in the third row of the empty bleachers watching as Daniel played tennis with Jack. Having lost two sets already, Daniel was on his way to losing the match but didn’t seem to care. Jason could tell he was having fun. The two baited each other relentlessly, winding each other up, with Jack serving the ball dangerously close to Daniel on several occasions and Daniel neatly returning it close to the net. Jason couldn’t help but smile as insults were thrown after each serve.
“It’s not fair, you know,” said a voice behind him and Jason looked up as a handsome man with golden brown hair sat down next to him, offering his hand. “Good to see you again, Jason,” he said and handed him a Guinness.
Jason took it and returned the greeting, looking the man over. He’d cut his hair and it looked good. “Thanks. Good to see you, too, Dylan. On vacation?”
Dylan gave him a sharp smile. “Figured you’d notice. Since Thursday.”
“You noticed us, too, I think.”
“Kinda hard not to,” Dylan added. “How’re you both?”
“Well, and you?”
Jason looked at the man’s unshaved face as he mimed scratching at his chin. “What’s with the peach fuzz? Compensating for the shorn locks?”
“Fuck you,” Dylan laughed, swiping over his mouth and chin with thumb and forefinger. “Got tired of getting carded.”
“My man, you’re gonna get carded no matter what. You’re doomed.”
“Well, the shorter hair cut should help.”
Jason smirked. “Only slightly.”
“Smart ass,” Dylan retorted as he and Jason clicked bottles and laughed. Passing a hand over his hair, he said, “Seriously, does it look okay?”
“Absolutely,” Dylan replied.
“You look good as always. But you know you have one of those faces and like me, you’re gonna look young till you hit forty.”
Dylan grinned wickedly. “If memory serves, it’s just about that time for you.”
Jason growled. “Don’t remind me.”
“But forty looks good on you,” Dylan said, flirting.
Jason smiled back and couldn’t help but feel that familiar tug of attraction that happened whenever he would see Dylan at the club. “So what’s unfair?”
Dylan gestured at the court. “Bad enough having the two of you hard bodies to look at and choose from–“
“Choose? There’s choosing involved?” Jason taunted.
“But now you bring someone who looks like that? Completely unfair.”
Jason grinned. “That’s Daniel, the friend we mention once in a while.”
“Ah, the workaholic scientist. You finally got him to come.”
Jason had been taking a drink from the bottle and choked at the unintended double entendre. “Yeah,” he rasped, “that’s him.”
“Something I said?” Dylan grinned as Jason coughed and hit his chest.
“We got him to come alright, in more ways than one.”
“I’m jealous already,” Dylan said, taking a drink from his own bottle.
“No need,” Jason said, waving at the remark.
Dylan looked at him as Jason watched Jack and smiled around another sip of beer. Those two were as tight as any committed pair but they always acted as if they weren’t. Shaking his head, Dylan said nothing. “Daniel doesn’t look like your usual geeky scientist.”
“He’s not your usual geeky scientist,” Jason grinned, glancing at Dylan as he looked at Daniel taunting Jack on the court. “But if you ever give him the chance, trust me, you’ll find out that man is seriously smart. Probably genius-level but he’ll never admit it.”
“Handsome, smart, and modest. Weird combination.”
Jason grinned. “Not the usual one, is it? Daniel has his own brand of arrogance but no vanity about his appearance. Shit, it’s only been recently where he updated his wardrobe.”
Dylan snorted. “I think he’d look good in a sack cloth. You were right on the money, Jason. Question is, bad wardrobe or not, why haven’t you brought him here before now? I kept expecting him to show up sooner or later.”
Jason made a face. “Daniel … was married. But she died two years ago and he’s been in mourning since then, keeping to himself and in his own world for a while.”
Dylan frowned with concern. “Crap, that sucks. But it’s understandable. Was he in the closet all that time?”
“Well, yeah, because of our jobs. Like you used to be. But the difference here is that until Daniel joined the Air Force as a consultant, he’d been out of the closet all his life. Suddenly, his job forced him back into it. He met his wife not long after he’d started … consulting.” Jason made a different face, alluding to the fact that he was speaking in hidden subtext, unable to tell Dylan exactly what Daniel did. Dylan waved at him with an understanding, ‘move along’ gesture. “Anyway, two years ago, his wife was killed and he took it very hard.”
Dylan nodded as he looked out on the court. “I saw him last night. He looks like a man who feels deeply about things.”
Jason smiled gently. “Yeah, he is. He’s tried to move on but the luck he’s had with women since her death has been … well, he’d have better luck mating with a siren.”
“Ouch,” Dylan cringed.
Jason grimaced. “I can’t say he was looking. He wasn’t. Because of her, Daniel’s desire for other women has gone walkabout, maybe for the rest of his life, I don’t know. He told me one day that it doesn’t bother him all that much since he loved his wife very much but I kept wondering how he could bear the loneliness. And given what I know now, I’m even more mystified.”
“What do you mean?”
“Up until recently, neither Jack nor me knew Daniel was bi.”
Dylan’s eyes widened. “You’re his best friends and you didn’t know?”
“Nope. Daniel can hide his emotions extremely well.”
“Understatement of the year, Jason, if he can hide his feelings from two, well, seasoned veterans.”
Jason smirked at him and smacked his knee. “He’s more seasoned than we are because he’s had years on us. The only difference between us right now is we’re helping him play catch-up.”
“I get that, but that’s not what I meant. His radar is broken if he didn’t even know about you two.”
Jason winced. “It is a bit, but then, we’re just as good as he is in hiding our feelings. Comes with the territory, as you know.”
Dylan sighed, remembering his years as a SEAL. “It does.” As he looked out on the court, smiling a bit at how Daniel laughed at Jack, he then asked, “He seems to be okay. Is he? I mean, is he over his mourning period?”
“He wouldn’t be here if he weren’t,” Jason said, watching his friend. Turning to Dylan, he narrowed his eyes a bit, suspecting there was a reason behind the question. “It’s just time, I think. Are you worried he might backslide?”
Dylan stared back at him, then finally sighed deeply and shrugged. “I just don’t want to try if there’s a danger. You know how I am. I’m a stable kind of guy with the rare one-night stand. I like my routine. If you think it’ll work with him, or not, let me know right now. I don’t want to hurt him or myself, if you see what I mean.”
“Jumping the gun a little, aren’t you?” Jason asked, feeling a twinge of protectiveness.
Dylan looked him straight in the eye. “You didn’t see the way he looked at me last night.” He then took a quick sip of beer and added, “There’s something there, I feel it.”
Jason fought off the internal bells and called himself a hypocrite. He and Jack had just been discussing this very thing so what was the problem?
“Jason?” Dylan queried.
“He’s … good to go, I think. But Dylan, he was with someone last night. He’s back in the game, so if you’re–“
Dylan raised a hand to ward him off. “Whoa, don’t worry. I don’t want to marry him tomorrow. It’s understandable that he’d want to sample the menu first. I just want him to know that if he’s ready for the main meal, I’m here.” He grinned then, knowing the food metaphors were getting thick.
“You hungry or something?” Jason smirked.
Dylan shot him a wink and a shrug as he took another sip of beer. “I was out swimming earlier.”
Jason nodded, then decided to tease back. “Well, I’ll let you know one other thing then I’ll stay out of it.”
He paused as Dylan smiled sarcastically back at him. “You don’t need to worry about the lack of recent experience. He’s … just fine.”
Dylan stared at Jason, observing the oddly happy smile, and could only grin and nod as he refocused his attention on Daniel. He watched carefully, eyes trained on Daniel’s muscles as he moved. His cock began to stir to attention when he started to think about having sex with him. For hours. “I take it that means he’s as good as he looks?”
“Better.” While Dylan cleared his throat, he added, “So here we are, getting him back into life with some style.”
“That’s some style you chose.”
“Why didn’t you ask him up?” Jason asked suddenly. “You usually move faster than that for something you want.”
“There was the little unanswered question about you and Jack. I don’t like to poach, you know that.”
“Well, now that’s settled, isn’t it?”
Dylan nodded, saying nothing. Then they both cringed as Daniel served the ball and forced Jack to turn. The ball made a resounding thwack against Jack’s hip.
“Ouch,” Dylan said.
“Oh yeah. Ouch.”
On the court, Daniel winced and started for the net. “Shit, sorry, Jack.”
“The hell you are,” Jack said, walking off the pain.
“I am,” Daniel insisted, jumping the net and going over to him. He reached over to gently rub at the spot but Jack grabbed his hand.
“You know damn well that rubbing bruises makes them worse.”
Daniel noticed that there was no anger in his eyes. In fact, there was no pain there, either. Realizing he hadn’t hurt Jack, and that Jack was playing possum, he said, “But it feels so good.”
“That so?” Jack snapped.
Daniel tried to tug his hand away but Jack yanked him forward, putting Daniel off-balance and making him fall into his arms.
“Gotcha,” Jack said softly before tightening his hold around Daniel and kissing him. Softly at first, then more deeply until they were both panting through their noses.
Back in the bleachers, Jason grinned and glanced at Dylan, then took a double-take as he saw the intensity in Dylan’s eyes. “What?”
“That’s serious,” Dylan replied, feeling a bit of a let-down.
Jason looked out over the court, at his two friends, seeing nothing there he hadn’t already seen for a long time. “Yeah, and?”
Frowning, Dylan looked at Jason. Hard. “Damn, it’s serious with you, too.”
“What the hell are you talking about? We’re not in a committed relationship with him. As I said, Daniel’s just getting back into the game. Jack and I think it’s only fair he do a bit of partying before settling down. You can’t rush into a relationship without having sampled the available men, you know that.” He paused, his frown deepening into worry. “What’s wrong?”
Dylan shook his head, mostly to clear it of the thoughts he’d been having. For a moment, he wished for a chance at a relationship with Daniel, then two things brought him back to reality. Their jobs, and the secrets that went with them, and the fact that, going by the body language, these men loved each other. And fiercely. How the hell could Dylan hope to insert himself into that? More to the point, he didn’t want to. “I thought you said he was a free agent.”
“Oh for chrissakes,” Jason sighed. He didn’t think he and Jack had shown more than just the usual close friendship so what the hell could Dylan be picking up on? “I don’t know what you think you’re seeing here, Dylan. Yeah, if you see that we love each other, you’re right, but it’s because we’re close friends. That’s all it is.”
With a sigh, Dylan knew he’d never get Jason to admit otherwise. Besides, he really had no right to question the point. “Sorry, Jason. I forgot how deep friendships can be, especially when you’re serving together.”
Jason stared long at his friend as Dylan turned his attention to the court. Intuition told him a few things and his protection of Daniel switched to Dylan. “No, I’m sorry. I’m also sorry I pushed this at you, pushed him.” As an aside, he said, “Don’t tell him that. He’ll get pissed at me. And Jack.”
“Don’t worry about it, but I’m wondering why you’re sorry.”
“Secrets. They’ll be between you if you two actually hook up for more than just a casual fuck once in a while. He’d have to …”
“Lie, I know, Jason. I was there.”
Jason stared at him at little longer, then made a decision. “I’d say go for it anyway, just remember that bitch of a condition.” When Dylan finally nodded and smiled, Jason smiled back and cuffed him on the shoulder. “Attaboy.” He looked at his watch and raised his brows. “Holy shit, you’re right. It’s almost noon.”
Dylan rolled his eyes. “Time flies,” he said before finishing his beer.
“Have lunch with us. Get to know him a little, see if there really is something there.”
“There’s something there,” Dylan said with assurance.
“The library look?” Jason smirked, not really sure he believed him.
“The library look,” Dylan replied. At Jason’s expression, he shook his head. “I know, it sounds crazy.”
“It does,” Jason said, then snorted as he stood up. “But you’ll find that that kinda defines everything about Daniel.”
“How’s that?” Dylan asked, standing as well.
“You’ll find out,” Jason said, and grinned when Dylan rolled his eyes again. He looked out on the court and smiled at the way Daniel and Jack joked with each other.
“I’ve already found out one thing,” Dylan finally said.
“What’s that?” Jason asked, intrigued.
“Last night, it was just a greeting, nothing more, but I felt it anyway. That instant attraction, that pull. Like I felt with you and Jack.”
Jason reached for Dylan’s hand and brushed the back of it with the back of his own. “Went both ways, my friend.” He waited a beat, then added, “I’ve missed seeing you when we’ve come up. Where’ve you been?”
“Working elsewhere, and I’d tell you more but then I’d have to kill you.”
Jason snickered. “Don’t I know it.” Before he called out to tell Jack and Daniel it was time to stop fooling around, he said to Dylan, “Do me a favor?”
“Surprise him with your distinct knowledge about rope play.”
Dylan’s brows went up. “You can’t be serious. It’s ‘get to know you’ time, Jason, not ‘stage two, the art of sharing your kinks with your partner.'”
Jason nodded, holding up a hand. “I know, I know. I’m just sayin’. Whenever you feel it’s appropriate. Besides, you’ll know where Daniel is concerned. He tends to be the initiator.”
Dylan’s brows shot up as his dick twitched with keener interest. “Does he really? Is that why you’re pushing? Because you know I like men that way?”
Jason threw him a teasing grin. “It’s a suggestion.” Dylan snorted and Jason grabbed his hand. “So … lunch?”
“I’d love to.”
“Good man,” Jason replied, then called out, “Okay you two, it’s time for lunch.”
“I’m starved,” Daniel said, then swung his racket and hit Jack in the ass with it. But just a bit too hard. At the look in Jack’s eyes, Daniel cleared his throat. “Well, guess I should change for lunch.” He walked over and hopped over the net, heading for the court exit. When he got there, he stopped and turned around. Jack was calmly stepping over the net, walking toward him, but his eyes had such animal-like intensity that Daniel had a feeling he was in deep shit. He turned around and headed through the exit.
He’d achieved the result he’d wanted–only he wished he hadn’t hit Jack quite so hard. But the flutter of excitement in his stomach and balls made his concern take a backseat. Looking behind him, Jack was getting closer, taking longer, slightly quicker strides. Clearing his throat again, Daniel said, “I’m sorry, Jack.”
Daniel let a goading smirk show. “Not about hitting you. Just hitting you that hard.”
“If you’re looking for trouble, Daniel, I think you’ve found it,” Jack responded calmly. More calmly than his eyes indicated.
Daniel’s pulse began to race for different reasons now. He’d pushed all of Jack’s buttons, hoping that sooner or later, he’d bring out the hunter. And god, Jack looked like the hunter. Except, who was really hunting who? Daniel asked himself as he quickened his pace across the grassy slope that bordered the left side of the estate.
“You’re walking a little lame, Jack, are you sure you’re alright?” he goaded once more.
Jack’s answer was to keep silent. Exhilarated, Daniel kept his pace the same, and with Jack just paces behind him now, he knew that by the time they reached the suite …
Jason looked down at his watch. “Well, they’ll be about an hour or so.” With a look around, he asked, “So how’s the hockey rink coming?”
“Almost finished. Care for a tour?” Dylan asked as he gestured toward the other side of the estate.
As Daniel walked into the suite, he wondered what the fuck had gotten over him, leaving Jason in the bleachers, and with someone Daniel felt sure was the stranger he’d seen last night. It had been hard to tell, given the slant of the sunlight. But all thoughts of his friend and the stranger came to an abrupt halt when Jack came in behind him and shut the door. “Jack,” he began, feeling flushed as he tossed his racket on the sofa. “I really didn’t mean–“
“Did you notice who Jason was talking to?” Jack interrupted as he stalked toward him, tossing his racket next to Daniel’s.
“I was more interested in you,” Daniel evaded, moving backward toward his bedroom door, giving Jack a challenging look as he pulled off his shirt and kicked off his shoes.
“You noticed,” Jack growled as he followed, removing his own shirt and carelessly throwing it on the floor. “I think that’s significant, don’t you?”
Despite the shiver ran down Daniel’s spine as he reached his bedroom, he continued to snark. “Not when you’re stalking toward me like a lion after after an oryx.”
Jack half-smiled. “Sounds like mealtime to me.”
Jack was close enough now that Daniel could smell the sweat coming off him, off them both, and as Jack slammed the bedroom door shut behind him, Daniel could smell a hint of his aftershave, too. The scent made him feel even more aroused, if that was possible. “Sounds good to me,” he said as he quickly began to strip off his clothes. He suddenly remembered that it had only been three hours since he’d been with Jason. So how the hell could he be hard again? How could Jack? “This makes no sense.”
“What makes no sense?” Jack said, clothes discarded as he backed Daniel onto the bed.
“Never mind,” Daniel breathed as he sucked in a breath and took in Jack’s muscles, accentuated from the sweat brought on by exertions on the court. This was it, his mind raced. Finally, this was it. He felt a tremor run through him at Jack’s rough touch and shuddered with excitement when he crawled over him.
“Do you have any idea how hard you hit me?” Jack asked, his eyes flashing.
“How hard?” Daniel asked, using his elbows and heels to continue moving backward.
“Hard,” Jack told him before he grabbed Daniel’s shoulders. “Stop moving. You’re perfect where you are.”
Daniel’s cock twitched from the tone in Jack’s voice, from the smell of him. He suddenly grabbed Jack about the neck and pulled his body down on top of him, kissing him demandingly, moaning at the hot and sticky feel of his skin against his own. He wanted everything, including Jack’s cock buried deeply in his ass.
Jack was thinking the same thing. Except in reverse. He needed to feel Daniel thrusting inside him. His skin felt electrified as Daniel ran his hands over him, touching everywhere, and he growled and wrapped his legs around Daniel’s thighs, turning them both over so that he was now the one underneath. “Guess what?” he whispered as he roamed his hands up and down Daniel’s wide back, caressing his skin and muscle with strong, firm fingers.
Daniel stared down at him as their dicks began leaking pre-come. “What?”
“We can make noise this time.”
“So you can yell, make me yell, do all you want–” Jack began but his words were cut off as Daniel claimed his mouth again, tongues tasting as if starved. Breaking for air, gasping, Jack tried to read Daniel’s eyes and hated that he couldn’t. “I need to feel you in me,” he said between short, hungry kisses. “What do you want?”
Daniel swallowed, forgetting about his original idea. Jack’s sounded better, especially since he’d said it in such a way that it made Daniel’s buttocks ache with the need to thrust. “To fuck you,” he whispered as he took Jack’s mouth again.
Jack smiled through the kiss, stretching an arm over to the bed table where the lube now sat. Bringing it back and waving it at him when Daniel pulled back. “Need this?”
“You do,” Daniel said and rewarded Jack with a promising thrust, making him drop the lube. Biting his lip, he indulged himself as he ran his hands over his chest, loving the feel of the thin covering of silky hair. “Finally.”
“Finally what?” Jack asked as his fingers lightly caressed Daniel’s throat before moving up to his chin, his mouth.
Daniel sucked in a finger, then let it go. “This,” he answered, nuzzling Jack’s hand when he palmed his cheek.
Jack could only nod in agreement as he reached between them and took Daniel’s cock in hand, moving his thumb over the head, spreading the pooling pre-come around the slit. Daniel jerked a thrust into his fist and Jack smiled victoriously. “Oh yeah, like that?”
“Yes,” Daniel hissed, then grabbed the lube Jack had dropped.
“No, no, not yet,” Jack told him as he rolled them over, suddenly nipping and kissing down Daniel’s throat, his hand still on Daniel’s cock, stroking slowly.
“Not me, you,” Daniel said as he turned them back over, the smell from them both bringing a tremendous urge to taste. Moving quickly, Daniel dropped down and licked over the head of Jack’s cock before taking it into his mouth.
“Fuck, yes,” Jack gasped, clenching the muscles of his ass as he thrust gently, watching with lustful fascination. He reached down to touch Daniel’s face, tracing around his mouth as he sucked him. “God, I love watching you do that.”
Daniel moaned luxuriously, once more tasting what he’d had only a few hours before. But somehow right now, he could sense more besides taste. Now he was consumed by the musky scent of sex, the silky feel and salty taste of his cock, and a lot more so than earlier, when he’d literally been surprised by it. Now he could take his time. He moved his tongue down the shaft, over his sack, taking in the delicious smell of his arousal before going back to suck in the head.
Memories from their time off-world came back to him, reminding him how quiet Jack had been forced to be. And how different that was now. The sounds he made only spurred Daniel on, wanting more. But when he heard Jack’s breath hitch, he was abruptly reminded that he couldn’t stay down there for long, not if he wanted Jack to come with his cock inside him. And he wanted to be inside him more than ever now.
As if reading his mind, Jack sat up, pulling his cock from Daniel’s mouth. Grabbing his lover by his biceps, he yanked him back over him into another fierce embrace, his tongue questing inside his mouth as his hands smoothed over skin and hard, tense muscle. “Want you now,” he said, barely breaking away, reaching down to pump his own cock through his fist.
Looking down at it, watching the head swell and leak, Daniel moaned with want. “I wish my ass wasn’t so sore.”
“I don’t. I like things just the way they are,” Jack growled, his actions a very clear indication of his need as he spread his legs and raised his knees.
Daniel licked his lips and reached into the drawer for a condom. As he opened the packet, Jack picked up the lube again, this time popping open the cap. He spread a generous amount over his own opening and was about to stick fingers inside when Daniel gently slapped his hand away. “You do me, I’ll do you.”
With a lustful, impatient smile, Jack rolled the condom over Daniel’s cock as Daniel gently pushed a fingertip into Jack’s ass. Jack groaned and tried to pay attention to what he was doing, but he dropped his head back and grabbed Daniel’s hand, stilling the gentle movement. For a moment, Daniel was confused until he saw the way Jack’s cock was twitching. “No?” he ventured.
Jack shook his head as pleasure swarmed over him. Just the feel of Daniel’s finger was enough to relax him. He needed more, but despite telling Daniel, “Now,” he didn’t make an effort to remove his finger.
Daniel gave Jack a tiny, mischievous smile. “I can get so carried away with you.”
Jack groaned and closed his eyes as Daniel pushed his finger in deeper. “God, I’d want that, but not right now.” To prove it, he grabbed the back of his knees and lifted, exposing more of his asshole and giving Daniel easier access. He wanted Daniel to see him like this, spread open, ready to be fucked. He knew damn well that it was a side of him that Daniel had never seen, and when raw lust mingled in the flushed, handsome face, Daniel’s blue eyes were nearly swallowed by black.
“Fuck, you’re so goddamn beautiful,” Jack breathed.
“I am?” Daniel asked, the smile of amusement gone, replaced by the one of astonished pleasure. “I’d say what you are, but it’d sound really, really corny at this point.”
“Too late,” Jack teased, then suddenly groaned and grabbed Daniel’s hand again. “I’m more than ready.”
“You don’t feel all that ready to me,” Daniel replied as he angled his finger, finding the little nub. When Jack hissed, he gave him another smile, this one of satisfaction, and began to massage.
Jack tilted his head back as his breathing increased. “Daniel.”
“Jack,” Daniel teased.
“Dammit, would you just …” Jack paused, sucking in a breath, because Daniel withdrew his finger and rubbed his cockhead against Jack’s puckered hole, pressing just a bit.
“Yes,” Jack said, his voice a strained groan of want. Looking back down, he watched Daniel ever so slowly push inside. In response, his cock spat out a bit of pre-come, making Daniel bite his lip again and smile.
“Feel good I take it?”
Jack looked up into Daniel’s face, fixing his gaze. “Fuck me.”
With his hands on Jack’s chest, fingers rubbing over the nipples, Daniel thrust, and as he did, Jack bore down against him, letting him in much more quickly. Because Daniel sank in faster than he’d intended, the tight heat nearly made him come.
“Oh shit,” he gasped, then laughed and bit his lip as he closed his eyes and froze, not daring to move his hips. The feel of Jack’s hands over his belly and chest didn’t help, but god, he loved it anyway.
“Y’okay?” Jack asked as tingles spread throughout his body.
Daniel opened his eyes and found a wicked smile plastered on Jack’s face. “I almost came, dammit.”
Like Daniel, Jack’s smile faded and lust replaced the amusement in his eyes as he reached around to grab Daniel’s ass. “Fuck me.”
Daniel groaned and closed his eyes again. “You’re going to be the death of me, aren’t you?”
“Isn’t that what I said to you off-world?”
Daniel chuckled, eyes still closed.
“Look at me, Daniel.”
Opening his eyes again, Jack moved his hands to his hips, pushing and pulling, trying to get him to move. He felt so goddamn good around his cock and Daniel just knew this wouldn’t last long. A voice inside him said, Then make it good, so he stared into Jack’s eyes as he pulled back, swallowing against the pleasure that filled him again. Sliding back in, he let out a moan as he pushed Jack’s knees to his chest and angled the thrust. Jack threw his head back as a result and encouraged, Daniel did it again. And again. Watching for the sign when he’d hit the prostate, he knew he’d gotten there when Jack’s eyes widened and his mouth dropped open.
Memories of Giancarlo came back to him and Daniel snapped his hips forward, hoping that Jack would like it that way. When Jack looked back into his eyes and his fingers closed over Daniel’s nipples and pinched, Daniel knew he did. He thrust again, screwing into him with a little snap of his hips at the end, going slow, not rushing, despite the deep warning in his balls.
Reaching down, he wrapped Jack’s right hand around his cock. “Jerk off for me,” he breathed, and when Jack obliged, Daniel tried to synchronize the strokes with the timing of his hips.
The reaction from Jack was unbelievable. He increased his rhythm and raised his feet, spreading his legs wider. “Yes, give it to me,” he panted.
Daniel placed his free hand on the headboard and held on tightly as he sped up. That peculiar blend of heat and pleasure filled his balls, threatening to climb up his cock, and Daniel knew that he was running out of time. “I’m going to come.”
“Then let go,” Jack gasped as he stroked a lot more rapidly. “Let go, Daniel, give it to me hard.”
His voice was quiet, pleading, at odds with the sweat and blush that covered his face and chest. Daniel gave him what he asked for and increased his rhythm while laying into him again and again, the headboard creaking loudly as Jack held on.
It lasted forever and yet not long enough and suddenly Jack tensed, his hand a blur of motion over his cock. Swallowing gulps of air, he gasped, “Shit, oh god,” just before he threw his head back and let out a long moan as he shot his release over his chest.
Watching it all brought Daniel off. He gripped the headboard with both hands and pumped his hips as fast as he could, then gasped “Jack!” as the orgasm slammed through him. He let loose a loud groan as he dropped his head down between his shoulders and jerked each time he thrust, the strokes getting shorter and shorter until he was finally still. Shaking, he slowly dropped down on top of Jack, who encircled him in his arms.
“Beautiful,” Jack said, kissing Daniel’s sticky face and lips, then diving into his mouth for a deeper taste.
“God,” Daniel answered as their lips parted. Other words were about to be uttered but he pushed them behind a door in the back of his mind and tried to move off Jack instead. Jack, however, was having none of it and tightened his hold even more. The action filled Daniel with unnamed sense of … something. Security didn’t sound right. He didn’t want to say belonging or romantic love because right now, it sounded too clingy. Love was pushed back behind the door with the other similar thought. He looked down and found Jack grinning at him. “What?”
“That was some orgasm. From you, I mean.”
“From you too, I think,” Daniel said, suddenly, inexplicably, embarrassed, and hid his face between Jack’s shoulder and neck. “First times do it every damn time, don’tcha think?” he asked, voice muffled. Jack’s distinctive chuckle vibrated under Daniel’s ear and he felt him grin against his neck. “Behave, Jack.”
“What?” Jack drawled, pretending innocence. “I wasn’t gonna say anything bad.”
“Maybe,” Daniel said, raising his head to look at him. Then came the next surprise of the day when Jack reached up and caressed his face. Daniel had no idea what to say to that. As if sensing it, Jack slid his hand around the back of his head and pulled him down for a slow, languid kiss.
Several minutes later, they cleaned up in silence, throwing each other gentle smiles. After getting dressed, Daniel could finally look at Jack without feeling embarrassed, so he watched him with admiration as the man put on jeans. The ass hugged him a bit loosely, but the style seemed to fit him. A short-sleeved black shirt came next and Daniel momentarily indulged himself with the image of ripping that shirt open.
“You look nice,” Jack said, admiring Daniel’s white Egyptian cotton shirt.
“So do you,” Daniel answered, feeling somewhat embarrassed again. He turned away, mystified by his emotions, and as soon as he had his own jeans buttoned, Jack surprised him yet again by coming up behind him to hug him. The man was a cuddler in bed, he’d found that out, but out of it? To Daniel, it felt like some sort of … relationship. Except, it wasn’t. Jack’s arms felt good, natural, as if they belonged there, but Daniel couldn’t help but tense.
Feeling it, Jack tensed too. “What’s the matter?”
“Nothing, it’s just … you’re all …”
“All what?” Jack asked. It then dawned on him what could be wrong. He’d been trying not to be too demonstrative around Daniel, fearing he’d give Daniel conflicted ideas. Or the right idea. Jack closed his eyes and told himself that he’d made that particular bed, now he had to lie in it. “You’re surprised by all the touchy-feely afterward?”
Daniel made a face. “Surprised, yes, but that’s not the problem. It feels … comfortable. Expected. Natural. Something I’d get all the time, like a …”
“Relationship,” Jack said, a pained smile on his face. When Daniel looked him in the eye and nodded, he sighed. “Sorry. It’s … it’s my way, I guess.”
“Don’t apologize, Jack,” Daniel told him in one of his soft but firm tones.
“I just didn’t mean to complicate things.”
“You didn’t,” Daniel assured him. “Just give me time to let it sink in, that’s all. I have to get used to this all over again.”
“This was good,” Jack said, referring to the sex. He let him go and turned Daniel around to face him. “That’s all I’m saying, just not with words.”
Daniel jogged his eyebrows in agreement and though he still felt a little wistful, he hid that look from Jack. “I get that, and I liked it. Not the complicated way, but because I used to be a cuddler after sex. I don’t usually get up and walk out. In fact, I tend to take a nap.”
Jack grinned. “Me too, but you know the cliched saying.”
Daniel smiled. “Dare I ask?”
“No rest for the wicked.”
Jack just laughed as he put on shoes and slapped Daniel’s ass. “C’mon, get the shoes on. Time for lunch.”
“How’s their menu here?” Daniel asked as he complied.
“Good. Typical American fare, with several ethnic dishes.”
Daniel’s stomach grumbled a bit as he followed Jack out the door. “Sounds like my stomach wants some of that.”
Jack sighed deeply and patted his stomach with both hands. “Worked up an appetite.”
Daniel snorted as they proceeded downstairs, then near the bottom, Jack’s hand was on his elbow. “I hope you don’t mind if someone joins us.”
Caught off-guard, Daniel’s eyes widened. The guy Jason had been sitting with in the bleachers? “That guy Jason was with?”
“I think Jason has probably invited him to join us for lunch. Name’s Dylan.”
“You asked me earlier if I recognized him.”
Jack grinned. “I did.”
“And I did. At least, I think so. The sun was a little glaring though.” Daniel knew that was a little white lie. He was almost certain that it was the man from the library. “Dylan, huh?”
Jack nodded and a sudden thought occurred to Daniel and it was his turn to catch Jack’s elbow just before they entered the dining room. “You two aren’t trying to hook me up, are you? I think I can manage that on my own.”
“Well, maybe a little, but it’s not completely unselfish,” Jack said defensively, but kept his tone mild. “We both think you two would hit it off.”
Daniel rolled his eyes but suddenly, as he and Jack stopped at the lectern of the maitre d’, he caught sight of Jason and the man named Dylan sitting at a round table twenty yards away. The man’s white-shirted back was to him but when he turned to see what Jason was looking at, he froze. Daniel didn’t even pay attention to the maitre d’s words as he led them to the table.
The closer Daniel got to this man, the more he sensed a fluttery feeling in his stomach. He could fall for this guy. There was something about him that was reserved but dangerous, and that danger wasn’t the bad sort. Daniel swallowed as he held out his hand the moment he reached the table. “Daniel,” he said with a smile. Dylan shook his hand and Daniel liked the feel of it. Long, strong fingers squeezing with a firm, confident grip.
Daniel sat down next to him as Jack rounded the table and sat next to Jason. When Daniel looked across at Jason, he thought he detected that secretive look his friend tended to get when he’d been doing something wrong. That really didn’t apply in this place, so the only thing Daniel could come up with was that he’d been talking about him. He was about to grill Jason about it, but their waiter showed up. Jason actually looked a little relieved. After ordering iced tea while the others ordered beer, Daniel decided to harass Jason later. Instead, he focused on Dylan. “Glad to finally meet you. I was going to come back and look for you last night, but I didn’t think you’d still be around.”
Dylan gave him a half smile. “I crashed after you left, actually.”
Daniel raised a brow and wondered if that meant Dylan had gone to bed alone, but at the moment, he didn’t think it would be kosher to ask. “Then I guess I should have said something earlier.”
“I would have, but you seemed a bit preoccupied and I didn’t want to bother you.”
The way he smiled made Daniel focus on the man’s lips, like he had last night, but those were distracting so he looked up into his eyes instead. Dylan flicked his gaze upward and Daniel realized he’d been doing the same thing. Since he wasn’t turning away or giving off negative vibes, Daniel figured he must’ve passed the same test Dylan had. Resisting the urge to laugh, he said, “Since it was my first visit here, I was rather distracted taking everything in.”
Dylan gave Jason and Jack a knowing look that irritated Daniel. The look was something only a friend would share. As the seconds passed, Daniel remembered that his friends had wanted to set them up, which meant they knew Dylan enough to trust him … and that meant, they’d known him for a while. But how long a while, and was it just at this club? And what the fuck was with that look they just shared? Clearing his throat, Daniel glanced at Jack and Jason and clenching his jaw, picked up his menu and focused his attention on that.
“Something wrong?” Jason asked.
Daniel glanced up at him, catching Jack, then Dylan, before returning his gaze to Jason. “Nope. Just wondering what that look was you guys just exchanged.”
Dylan’s eyes crinkled as he smiled. “Sorry,” he said, “no offense. You just reminded me of their first times here.”
“No offense was given,” Daniel replied. “I just felt out of the loop.”
“He hates that,” Jason said as he took a sip from his ice water.
Daniel twisted his mouth in thought as he stared at his friend. “Wanna tell me what else you shared with Dylan?”
Jason cringed just as the waiter returned with the drinks. “Later?”
“Fine,” Daniel said, then briskly ordered his lunch. After everyone else had given their orders, and the waiter had left, he looked at Dylan. “So if you were here when they first got here, can I ask how long you’ve been a member?”
“Eight years,” Dylan replied.
His answer seemed a little too cursory for Daniel’s taste, but he did remember one of the rules Jack had mentioned. Still, he had to have it confirmed. “Sorry for asking, but I didn’t think it a personal question. I was told,” and he glanced at Jack, “that we’re not supposed to ask those.”
“The main rule,” Dylan began just as Jack opened his mouth to answer, “is to never divulge the location of this club to any non-members. The second rule is that what we say at the club is between the parties involved.”
Daniel raised a brow. “So if I want to ask you something …?”
“Ask away,” Dylan told him.
He smiled widely and Daniel noticed the whiteness of his teeth, but more than that, how wolflike and sharp his canines were. Daniel found the full effect incredibly sexy and wondered what a bite from those teeth would feel like. “What’s safe to ask without sounding rushed or too personal?”
“There’s no such thing right now,” Dylan assured him, and to prove it, he laid his hand over Daniel’s, squeezed it gently, then withdrew it. “Ask anything. And I do mean anything.”
Daniel found himself focusing on the feel of Dylan’s hand. It was annoying. “Okay,” he said slowly, dropping the pitch of his voice. “How long have you been sleeping with Jack and Jason?”
While Jack and Jason coughed and made a quiet show about being embarrassed, Dylan put his elbows on the table and laced his fingers together. “About three years, for both. It was occasional but I haven’t been with them for the last few months or so.”
“Not our doing,” Jason said, then felt a little awkward saying it as if there’d been a reason to defend himself. Glancing at Jack, he said to Daniel, “Uh, meaning that he hadn’t been here.”
Dylan grinned at Jack, then focused on Daniel. “Business.” Daniel nodded, giving him a long look, and as Dylan peered back into those amazing blue eyes, he assessed the same intelligence he’d seen the night before. However, on closer inspection, there seemed to be a highly restrained passion. A sort of focused storm. He wondered what it would be like to have those eyes focused on him during sex. A sudden warmth spread through him as he realized he could very well find out, given what Jason had told him.
Clearing his throat, he said, “I already know you work for the Air Force at Cheyenne, courtesy of these two fellas, so I figure you should know right off that I understand the secrecy at NORAD. I’m a former Navy SEAL.”
“Really? Wow,” Daniel replied, though he didn’t know what else to say. A SEAL’s life was not exactly open for discussion. As Daniel stared at him, noting slight dilation of Dylan’s eyes, he wondered if Dylan could see his own. The attraction was definitly building. “How long were you in the Navy, or as a SEAL?”
Dylan paused, thinking over his answer. As he did, Daniel wondered what Dylan had been thinking about when his eyes dilated. Was it the same thing he was thinking? Given the way the man had looked at him the night before, he preferred to think so. But before Daniel could ask anything else, Dylan answered.
“I was in the Navy for ten years and I opted for SEAL training in boot camp halfway through college. When I left, my rating, or rank as your flyboys call it …” and he paused there to wink at Jack and Jason, “was an E-7, or Chief Petty Officer.”
“So I’d call you Chief if you were still in?” Daniel asked, a teasing smile on his face.
Dylan returned the teasing smile and with a wink said, “You’d call me ‘sir’, commissioned officer or not.”
“And now what do you do?” Daniel asked, wondering why the man wasn’t a SEAL anymore. He decided to ask when they were in private, and perhaps when he got the vibe that it was okay. Perhaps after they’d been friends for longer than an hour.
Dylan pursed his lips, choosing his words. “Private security.”
Daniel couldn’t help but grin. “That’s nicely vague.”
“So is what we told Dylan,” Jack answered.
“Yes,” Dylan said, matching Jack’s sardonic grin. “Air Force test pilots at NORAD.”
“Well, Nevada is a bit too obvious,” Jason added.
Dylan raised his hand, forestalling any more evasion. “S’okay. I can’t tell you what I do, either. Telling you I was a Navy SEAL isn’t breaking security as it’s no longer classified knowledge. But I can’t really say who I work for, not here.” He rolled his eyes a bit, indicating their surroundings.
“So, do we talk about the less serious stuff while we eat, is that it?” Daniel asked, a bit put off. “Like hockey, football, baseball, or whether or not Buffy the Vampire Slayer is better as a TV series or movie?”
Dylan chuckled as he gave Daniel another nod. “TV, definitely.”
The slightly awkward tension relaxed as they strayed from Buffy to other subjects, always mundane, always somewhat trivial. After their meals were served, discussion fell upon science fiction–started up by Jason–and he and Dylan began an animated discussion between the Star Trek series’ differences, what episodes were good, what episodes had lousy science. When the subject moved to other science fiction, and more specifically, the scientific validity of wormholes, Daniel found himself extremely amused because Sam would find it amusing. It was also ironic that they were talking about wormholes as science fiction when three of the people at the table had actually traveled through them. It just seemed so absurd.
Lunch passed quickly and they took their conversation from the dining room to the large veranda just outside its rear doors. It extended several dozen feet in both directions and multiple tables were shaded by patio umbrellas and the mosaic flooring was broken by large, rectangular landscape planters, filled with lots of domestic and exotic greenery.
As they stopped at one empty table, Daniel asked, “So, what’s on the agenda for this afternoon? Evening?”
Jason cleared his throat and exchange a sudden guilty look with Jack. “What?” Daniel asked, then he realized that they must have actually had something planned. And it hadn’t included him. He narrowed his eyes. “What?”
“Jack and I were planning to go on a walk on the grounds, find a spot, maybe have a snooze.”
Daniel’s eyes widened only slightly as he said, “Okay.”
Jack was caught off-guard. “Okay? You’re not going bitch at us for dumping you?”
“Nope,” Daniel answered, shaking his head. “But the next time one of you tells me you’re not having a relationship, I’m gonna smack the shit out of you.”
“Daniel,” Jack argued, “it’s called chilling out. You remember how to do that, don’t you?”
“Chilling out. Together.”
Jack gave him his typical grimace. “Would you just give it a rest?”
Daniel sighed. “Okay, fine.” He didn’t care that they were leaving him to go out for a walk. He’d been trying to think of a way to get rid of them so he could spend some time with Dylan. Now, he didn’t have to. Unfortunately, the old denial nonsense had his back up and Jack wasn’t going to get away with that goddamn evasion tactic much longer. Neither was Jason. Just what was so goddamn hard about admitting to a relationship?
“We can’t chill out at home, Daniel,” Jason told him as Jack snaked an arm around his and pulled him against his side.
“If I want to do this, for example,” Jack said, then nuzzled behind Jason’s ear, making him shy away with a grin on his face.
Daniel rolled his eyes and turned away from them, giving Dylan his attention. “Any plans?”
“Nope, I’m all yours. I was going to go back to the pool. Join me?”
“Sure, sounds good,” Daniel answered, but as he started to walk away, not looking at Jack and Jason, Jack called over.
“We’ll see you later?” Jack asked.
“For dinner?” Daniel suggested as he looked over his shoulder.
Jack and Jason nodded, then to Daniel’s annoyance, Jack kept his arm around Jason as they both walked back inside. Daniel stared after them, sighing heavily. It looked out of place, their closeness, and Jack’s actual public display of affection. But only because of that damned denial. What the hell was up with those two?
“Something wrong? You look a little jealous,” Dylan said, standing beside him.
Daniel made a tsk sound and turned away. “Not jealous. Frustrated.” He gestured which way they should go and Dylan pointed to the west side of the estate.
As they walked, he asked Daniel, “Why’s it frustrating?”
“You saw how they are together. They love each other more than they will admit. They’re in a committed relationship, even if it’s open, and they don’t seem to realize it.”
Dylan pursed his lips thoughtfully. “Want my opinion?” he finally asked.
Daniel paused on the stone walkway. “Sure.”
“They’re not admitting it to you.”
Daniel frowned. “Why the hell not?”
Dylan snorted softly and gestured they continue walking. “Because they love you as much as each other, I think. Maybe they’re being protective.”
“They’re being asses.”
Dylan paused and stuffed his hands in his back pockets. It would keep him from reaching out to hold Daniel’s hand. “Probably.”
That said, Daniel had nothing else to say, so he just looked at the scenery as they headed for the pool. On the way, Dylan barely paid any attention, which was odd for him because he liked the strolls around the estate. They were peaceful. But this time, his thoughts weren’t peaceful. His thoughts were on Daniel, his presence, and wondering when would be a good time to kiss him.
Daniel didn’t mind the silence, but like Dylan, he was a bit preoccupied with his companion. They walked through two different pathways and by the time they reached a third one, Daniel suddenly slowed.
“What’s wrong?” Dylan asked.
“I need my swim trunks. I can meet you back down here–“
Dylan shook his head. “Unnecessary. They have some here, in the pool house. The pool attendants will see to whatever you need.”
Daniel snorted softly, incredulous at the depth of service this place held. “And if I don’t like what they have?”
Dylan gave him a strange little smile. “Then we’ll get you something you do like. This place has a lot to offer, Daniel, and they’ll go out of their way to get it for you. It’s a resort, not just a club. They have a spa, the courts, the swimming pool …”
“And they have a dungeon?” Daniel asked with a small grin.
Surprised, Dylan returned his grin with a confused frown. “Yeah, they have that. Is that what you’re into?”
“Never gave it much thought. I’m not against it, I just don’t know much about it other than what it’s called. I was just surprised that they had that kind of set-up here.”
“And how’d you find out if you’re not interested?”
“Made a joke about bondage at breakfast.”
Dylan suddenly smiled, widely, remembering his talk with Jason. “Ah, so that’s why he brought it up.”
“Jason said I should introduce you to rope play sometime.” At the look Daniel gave him, Dylan smiled to take the tension out of his words. “Not today or tomorrow. Just, ya know, sometime.” Sensing he’d just gotten Jason into trouble, he winced. “It’s my fault. While you and Jack were on the court, I was asking Jason about you.”
Daniel eyed Dylan and realized that Jason had probably been giving Dylan personal information. Sighing, he asked, “So … what’d he tell you?”
“That you were married and lost your wife and that you’d only just decided to get back ‘in the game’ as he called it.”
Daniel rolled his eyes. He shouldn’t be surprised. Jason was such a possessive shit sometimes. He loved him anyway. “Well, since he’s been telling you about me, I think it’s only fair I know about you.”
Dylan grinned. “As I said at lunch, ask anything.”
“Ever been married?”
“I’m gay, not bi.”
“Not really. Navy, remember?”
“Really, nothing? Not even a beard to cover your ass?”
“I lived a life of secrecy. I wasn’t about to compound it.”
Daniel nodded, completely understanding that one. “Had any long-term relationships then?”
Dylan shook his head. “Not committed ones, if that’s what you mean. I’ve had … long-term casual affairs.”
Daniel smirked, not quite with amusement. “Like Jack and Jason.”
“That bothers you, doesn’t it?”
Daniel made a face and didn’t answer right away. They’d reached the end of the walkway that led to the pool house. “Not exactly. I just feel like I’m the third betting choice, I guess.”
Dylan suddenly took his hand and held it between both of his. “You’re not sloppy seconds or thirds. People have casual relationships all the time. It just so happens that mine involved your friends. It also doesn’t mean there can’t be something more, if you’d like, between us.”
Daniel blinked at him in surprise. “Is that your idea or Jason’s?”
“Mine,” Dylan grimaced. “And I know how it sounds. We only just met today.”
Daniel snorted. “Somehow, I think you met me long before I met you.”
Dylan released his hand. “Don’t be mad at them. They mean well and they love you very much.”
“I’m not mad,” Daniel sighed. “I just wish they’d stop …”
“Meddling?” Dylan asked.
“Exactly,” Daniel replied. He pursed his lips, thinking. “I’m just not used to it, Dylan. Just like I’ve never had service like they have here,” and he waved his hand indirectly about.
Daniel cringed. “Sad, probably. I’ve been to a lot of exotic places but I was always working, never able to take the time to indulge.”
Instead of asking questions, Dylan chose to suggest the obvious. “Then indulge now, Daniel.”
Daniel reached out and touched Dylan’s arm with the back of his hand. “I plan to.”