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Open Ice Hit: Chapter 16


For about ten seconds, as pain radiated up his leg and he glowered at Takuya like it was somehow personally his fault he was hurting, he considered being superstitious. Which, of course, he was, because there wasn’t an athlete in history who didn’t have some weird ritual or religious-like belief about their game.

He wasn’t really tempted to feel that way now, though, mostly because he was finally feeling vaguely…satisfied, if not happy. He also didn’t really think the feeling was coming at the expense of his game. It was just a twisted ankle, and it wasn’t his fault.

Coach Katz had set up a game for Takuya’s peewee sledge hockey team, mostly as a photo-op but also because the kids were cute as hell and always got super excited when they got to play on NHL ice.

The afternoon would have been fine, too, if the rest of the Phantoms hadn’t gotten a wild hair up their asses about having a sledge scrimmage against the adult team who had come down to supervise the kids. They, of course, wiped the ice with the Phantoms, and it was all great until Noah was climbing out of his sledge at the edge of the ice and Yash lost control of a slide and careened into him.

His foot got caught and twisted, and for a moment, he was sure it was broken.

An x-ray proved that wrong, which was only a small relief because the sprain was nasty, which meant he would be on the bench for the next two games. He sat in sullen support of everyone as he watched the Phantoms take the next two wins—one against the Sea Dogs—and his heart ached a little because he had desperately wanted to prove to Tommy that they could do this.

They could have this thing between them, and they could be on the ice together, and Tommy wouldn’t have that look in his eyes that had all but devastated Noah while he’d been caring for his concussed lover. He hadn’t realized how much he’d been hurting Tommy, not just with the shit he said in interviews, but by leaning into the cruelty of the lie.

He didn’t think Tommy was a dirty player. He’d fucking known he wasn’t the entire time. But it was so much easier to blame him than to face his own feelings, and for that, he wasn’t sure he deserved to be forgiven.

Tommy had skated past him, snowing the bench with a grin on his face, and Noah hadn’t smiled, but he’d felt lighter at the sound of the man’s laughter trailing away. He caught Zed’s look of warning, but he didn’t lean in. He just kept his gaze on his team, and occasionally, the beautiful fucking grace Tommy had on the ice, and the way he handled the puck, which was damn near erotic.

Of course, the Dogs went on a short roadie just after that, so Noah was left to his own devices—mostly Takuya’s torture-chamber PT room, which he only visited because it was the only way to get signed off and back in his damn skates.

“Stop glaring at me,” the doctor said, giving his thigh a slap. He leaned forward a little harder, rotating Noah’s ankle, which had finally—after a week—stopped shaking when pressure was applied.

It still hurt, but it could bear weight, and he was feeling desperate.

“Just sign the fucking form,” Noah grumbled as Takuya leaned back and offered him a grin.

Noah acknowledged the small crush he’d once had on the man. It had been sparked by the doctor’s laugh, which was more like a giggle unless he was drunk, and the dimple in his left cheek. It grew because Takuya was a fucking brilliant tactician whose plays almost universally earned them at least two goals per game. When he was willing to offer strategy.

The crush had simmered down to nothing, though, after Takuya’s first season with the Phantoms. Now, they were friends, or at least as close to friends as Noah usually got with people. He understood why people called him the team dad, especially given the way he was looking down at Noah with a little frown on his face.

“What?” Noah asked, pushing up to sit.

Takuya shook his head. “It’s not your ankle.”

Noah felt a spark of fear. “What? What do you mean?”

“I thought you were in pain,” the man said, then carefully pushed to his feet and took a second to gain his balance.

Noah grumbled softly as he fell back against the mats, then gently rolled his ankle, feeling the slight burn of under use. “I am in pain. You’re a monster.”

Takuya laughed, and Noah heard him walk toward the water table. “I’ve been called worse, but that’s not what I mean. You’ve been antsy and off. It’s not the ankle, though.”

“Obviously,” Noah said. He rolled to a sit, then rose and tested his weight. It was sore, but nothing he didn’t usually feel this far into the season. “My ankle’s fine. So sign the paper…”

“I’m going to,” Takuya said, and Noah felt almost light-headed with relief. “Do you want to talk about what’s going on while I do that?”

Noah’s cheeks pinkened, and he glanced away, dragging fingers through his hair. “There’s nothing…”

“I’ve been working with this team too long not to read through every single one of your tells, Viklund,” Takuya said, his voice stern but not cruel. “You know you can tell me no. I’m just concerned.”

“As a physician?” Noah asked with only a hint of bitterness.

Instead of taking offense, Takuya walked over and leaned against one of the parallel bars, crossing his arms over his chest. His dark eyes were full of concern as they forced Noah to keep his gaze, and his mouth was turned down at the corners.

“If you feel like it’s going to affect your game, then yes. As a physician. But I also mean it as a friend. Always,” he added, his voice going heavier, “as a friend.”

Noah felt that in his chest, and he swallowed thickly. “It’s…My personal life is complicated.” And his birthday was coming up, which was always a rough time for him, and he was feeling even more distance from his family than usual. Granted, it was what he wanted, but he hadn’t expected it to hurt. “Where did you grow up?”

Takuya looked at him with a slight frown, and Noah realized his mistake. It was likely the man got asked that all the time by well-meaning people who wanted to know where he was really from, but it wasn’t what he intended.

“I didn’t mean…”

Takuya’s face softened. “No, I know. I grew up in San Francisco. My parents had a townhouse on a street everyone called Fog Alley. There was no sun after eleven in the morning, so I didn’t even know what a tan was until I moved to Orlando for school.”

Noah chuckled softly. “Relatable. Well, not the fog, but…” He gestured to himself, his own pasty skin that turned painfully pink after too long under the sun’s rays.

Takuya’s grin widened. “Why do you ask?”

Blowing out a puff of air, Noah rubbed the back of his neck and shrugged. “I think I realized this week I’m probably never going back home.” He shook his head. “No. No, that’s not…” The words caught in his chest, but he forced them out because he knew it would be better if he could hear it aloud. “It’s not home anymore. A while back, my…” He stopped again because he had no idea what the fuck he was supposed to call Tommy. “A friend of mine asked me what I was going to do after hockey.”

Takuya winced. “Ouch. I know that question sucks.”

Noah felt a stab of guilt because the other man had had to face it before he’d even gotten started. “I hadn’t thought about it, you know? I have a few more years left if I’m lucky.”

“More than a few,” Takuya said, pushing away from the bars and taking a step closer to Noah. “You’re in peak health, and you’re only getting better every year. You keep taking care on the damn ice, and you’ll have a while to go.”

Noah sighed quietly, but he leaned into the touch when Takuya dropped a hand on his shoulder and squeezed. “It’s still something I should think about. Everyone talks about what life will be like when they go home, but I don’t have one.”

“Not even here?” the doctor asked.

Noah managed to hold back his flinch, but only just. This place wasn’t really home. It was just where he existed. And he’d come to realize a long time ago that home wasn’t the land where you set your feet; it was the place that held your heart, and right now, his was in limbo.

He wanted to know that there would be soft, steady hands to catch him when he fell, but he knew better than that.

There was no one, not even a net. Just hard, unforgiving ground beneath him.

“Henny calls it the bi-annual moment of ennui,” Noah said, allowing himself a small smile. He stepped away from the other man and rolled his shoulders back before holding out his hand. “I’d like my paper now please.”

Takuya reached out and shoved him a step back. “Don’t be an asshole. I’ll forward it to Coach Katz, but you’re good to go. Kick their asses tonight, yeah?”

Noah’s grin was wide this time and genuine. “You know I’ll do my best.”

“Yes,” Takuya said, meeting his gaze, “I know you will.”


Noah couldn’t help his grin in spite of his irritation at being stuck in the presser for far longer than he wanted to be. But it was inevitable—like it was always inevitable—when you had a hat trick. And it was his first of the season—the first in a goddamn long time—and it was a sharp and gorgeous reminder of how much he loved the game.

When the third puck had sailed past Forsey’s glove, he’d stared for a minute like he was lost in a fantasy. Then hats began to rain down, and Zed was literally crushing him into the boards, screaming in his ear. They still had ten minutes left on the clock, but it didn’t matter. The game was theirs.

The Rockets managed to get one more goal out of Kevin, but he was still smiling in spite of it when Noah skated up and crushed his bucket against Kevin’s. The goalie grabbed him around the back of his glove and squeezed.

“Motherfucking hat trick.”

Noah’s eyes were a little hot, and they got even hotter when the first text on his screen was from Tommy. Noah wasn’t the kind of guy who got texts after games like that. His parents didn’t watch, and if his sister did, she never gave any indication that she cared how well he played.

Every so often—when he was particularly brilliant on the ice—Zed’s dad would send a text to his son’s phone for Noah, and that always felt nice.

But this was something just for him.

“You fuckin’ beauty,” Henny told him as he walked out of the locker room, tugging at the collar of his shirt.

Noah rolled his eyes, but he was still grinning. “Fuck off.”

Henny elbowed him hard enough that he crashed against the wall. “I missed that smile, man. You have no idea.”

That was unexpected and hit Noah hard. Had he really become such a miserable bastard over the last few months? Longer? Hockey was his life, but he also used to love the game. It was more than just everything to him; it was something he wanted to do.

Jesus, Tommy was right about him.

“You know it wasn’t just me tonight,” Noah said as they headed for the parking garage.

Henny rolled his eyes. “Man, can you just take a fucking compliment for once in your life? Team effort, blah, blah. You got a fucking hat trick, bro. I’m not going to let you write this one off.”

Noah paused, then his smile widened. “I was pretty fucking good tonight.”

“And on a bum ankle,” Henny crowed, knocking into him again. “You wanna grab a drink?”

Noah would have—in fact, he would have killed to be free for a drink with Henny because it really had been too long since he let loose. And technically he had no plans. “Uh,” he began, then he froze because he swore he saw movement near the back window of his car.

For a second, panic rose in him because it wasn’t often, but every now and again, they’d get fans who were a little too enthusiastic about their love for the team. But he saw a flash of dark hair, and he knew.

Payback—in the best possible way.

“I can’t tonight but maybe next week?” When Henny gave him a frown, he held up a hand in surrender. “I promise. I’m not blowing you off.”

Henny lifted a brow, then shrugged. “Your loss, man. Have a good night.”

Noah slowed his steps as Henny crossed the pavement toward his car with his massive tree-trunk legs, and as soon as he got in and shut the door, Noah picked up speed. The good thing about Tommy was how ridiculous he was, and Noah could hear him snickering to himself as he got closer.

“You’d fail out of ninja school immediately,” he said just loud enough for Tommy to hear.

Tommy let out a small scoff, and when Noah unlocked the door with the key fob, Tommy opened the passenger door and slid in, ducking low so no one would see him. Noah lifted a brow as he sat behind the wheel and ignored the way his heart was thrumming in his chest.

“I’d be a fucking amazing ninja. You’d never see me coming.”

Noah wanted to say something dirty, something to make Tommy blush, but more than that, he wanted to drag him home and show him exactly what was on his mind. He pushed the button to start the car and felt Tommy’s eyes on him as he pulled through the gate and out onto the street.

“Is this, like, a kidnapping?”

Noah laughed and rolled his eyes. “You stalked me. You got into my car. If anything, it’s a reverse kidnapping.”

“That’s not even a thing,” Tommy said, finally sitting up straight as Noah put distance between the car and the arena. He stretched, then draped one arm over Noah’s shoulders and dragged the tips of his fingers over the shell of his ear. “Did I ever tell you how much competence turns me on?”

Noah glanced out of the corner of his eye and licked his lips. “A lot of things turn you on.”

“Yeah, but three fucking goals in one period is definitely one of my kinks.”

Noah groaned softly and shook his head, not brave enough to look over now. Not if he wanted to get home in one piece. He gripped the wheel tighter and even managed to bite back a sarcastic comment when Tommy began to screw around with his presets.

“Uh,” Tommy said after a beat, “where the fuck are we going?”

Noah pulled onto his street and cleared his throat. “My place.”

Tommy was quiet long enough for Noah to reach the house, pull up, and turn the car off. There was tension between them suddenly, and Noah started to second-guess himself.


“Why?” Tommy asked, speaking over him. Noah swallowed thickly and stared at Tommy’s face, which was settled into an expression of uncertainty and something maybe like fear.

Fuck. He was such an asshole. “Do you want to come in?” he asked, instead of telling him all the reasons he was desperate to get Tommy into his bed.

The look on Tommy’s face had Noah suddenly terrified that Tommy was going to get out, call an Uber, and leave. Because what if he was reading this all wrong. What if…

“Do you have pets?”

Noah blinked. “What?”

“Pets,” Tommy asked. “I love hanging out with Zed because it means I get to play with the puppy.” He shrugged. “Last time I was here I just kind of poured you into bed so, like, I didn’t get a good look around.”

Noah let out a sharp breath at the reminder of that night. “No pets. I don’t have time. It feels cruel, you know?”

“Yeah. It’s fucked. When I retire, I’m getting like four cats, a dog, and a ball python.”

That startled a laugh out of Noah, and he quickly reached for his door handle, all but tumbling from the seat. “You’re so strange.”

Tommy slid up next to him, though not close enough to touch, but he was grinning as Noah reached for his keys. “Yeah, well, you fucking like it.”

He did. He really fucking liked it. In spite of everything, in spite of how terrified he was that this was all going to come crashing down and ruin what little joy he had left in his life, he liked this man. He got the door open, then walked down the short hall and took a right into the kitchen.

It was strange to have Tommy in his space. It was strange to have anyone there. He hadn’t realized how isolated he’d become, but he was aware now that people had stopped asking to come over. And it was his own fault.

He drummed his fingers on the counter, then he turned and met Tommy’s gaze. “Drink?”

“You wanna fuck me tipsy?” Tommy asked.

Noah considered it, because he was wound up tight and wasn’t sure where to go from there. But it wasn’t fair to Tommy. The man deserved all of him present and aware. He reached for the buttons on his shirt with one hand and Tommy with the other, and it only took a second for the space between them to disappear.

“Not really,” he said. “Do you want a tour?” His hand cupped Tommy’s cheek, rough at first, then he gentled when it felt all wrong under his skin. He brushed the edge of the other man’s mouth with the side of his thumb and leaned in to kiss him with all the care and tenderness he had been desperately wanting but had been too afraid to use.

Tommy’s mouth was hot, his tongue velvet soft with hints of sweetness and coffee as it slid along Noah’s. The kiss was equal parts needy and easy, and Noah nipped at him, drinking in his groan.

“Fuck,” Tommy said. “Fuck, you are so good at kissing. And no, I don’t want a tour. You can show me around after.”

Noah kissed him again, making it rougher, dirtier, deeper. He crowded Tommy back against the counter and shoved a thigh between his legs, hitching him up so high, Tommy had to rise up on his toes.

“Take your dick out,” Noah commanded. It was too easy to fall back on old habits. Rough commands danced on the edge of his tongue as Tommy whimpered, his hands trembling as he reached for the zipper on his jeans. “Stroke it.”

Tommy’s breath feathered across Noah’s cheeks as he leaned in, their noses almost touching. “I…”

Noah’s hand rose to Tommy’s throat and held him fast. “Did I tell you to speak?”

Tommy shook his head, his cheeks pink, but it wasn’t like before. There was something in his eyes that looked almost…disappointed. Not quite betrayed but nearly.

He gave his dick a single stroke, and Noah opened his mouth, not knowing what he was about to say. “Good boy. So good for me.”

The magic words.

Tommy all but melted against him and began to stroke himself in earnest. Noah tried to reach for that edge—the sharpness of their past hookups—but it was no longer there. It was just an echo of what should have never been. What would have never been if he’d been smart enough to pay attention.

“Love you like this,” Noah murmured. He dragged his hand down the front of Tommy’s throat until it reached his dick, and he pushed Tommy’s hand out of the way. The man gasped and arched against him, and Noah took a step back, pulling Tommy along with him by his cock. “Fuck. Look at you.”

Tommy seemed beyond words, his lips parted, though he followed Noah’s lead as they made their way down the hall and into his bedroom. It was dark there and chilly, which felt good against his heated skin. He was exhausted but still riding high on his game adrenaline, and it merged beautifully with the desire burning hot in his gut.

“How do you want me?” Noah asked, stepping in so close, their chests brushed together. He let Tommy’s cock go, gripping him by the hips instead.

“I…You choose,” Tommy told him. He was clearly thrown off by the question, and Noah realized that wasn’t what the man needed. He didn’t want to control. He just wanted to know Noah was in this as much as he was.

Noah waited a beat, wondering if Tommy was going to chirp him, but the familiar insults—the antagonism—were missing. Something had fundamentally shifted, and Noah half wondered if maybe they should talk about it.

The very thought of that sent his heart racing, a cold sweat breaking out on his forehead. Then he looked into Tommy’s eyes and saw anticipation and raw need but nothing else. He wasn’t going to make him say it aloud.

He wasn’t going to ask him why things were different.

He was just going to stand there and accept what Noah was willing to give.

Which was everything.

Tightening his grip on Tommy’s hips, he thrust against him. His clothed dick strained for actual friction as Tommy’s erection brushed against it, but he was going to take his time tonight. He was going to milk the win for everything he could.

Because God only knew how long Tommy would put up with him.

Dragging his palms up Tommy’s sides, he cupped his jaw, then used his thumbs to tilt his head all the way back. When his throat was exposed, he laid his teeth to his Adam’s apple and bit lightly. “I want you on the bed. Get your clothes off, but don’t touch yourself.”

Tommy’s swallow was so thick Noah could hear it clicking against the inside of his throat, and Noah kissed him right over his pulse before dragging his lips over his jaw, then pressing their mouths together.

He pulled away with a wet sound, then forced himself to take several steps back, watching as Tommy slowly regained his composure. His cheeks were flushed, and his fingers were trembling, but he hurried to obey without meeting Noah’s gaze.

He only indulged in watching for a moment, then he turned and walked into the bathroom. He had lube and a box of condoms there under the sink, and it would give him a second to collect himself. He didn’t close the door, but he stepped out of view and then stared at himself in the mirror.

He looked half-wrecked, just like Tommy—eyes wide, pupils dilated. His breathing was faster than normal, and a pink flush of need was gathering along his neck, reaching toward his ears. Had he ever looked like this before?

He felt powerful when he had his hands on Tommy, but right now, he looked owned. He looked possessed.

Pulling his shirt off, he undid the button on his trousers, then laid everything on the side of the sink. His dick strained at his briefs, and he gave it a rub over the cotton before he took the supplies and walked out to find Tommy lying spread-eagle over the duvet.

His cock stood proudly, curved toward his stomach, but Tommy’s fingers were fisted in the quilt, and Noah realized he had said Tommy wasn’t allowed to touch himself. Fuck, fuck.

Tommy was so good, and Noah was falling hard and fast.

He dropped the condoms and lube on the edge of the bed, then he set one knee near Tommy’s hip. He stared for a moment before letting his fingers trail a too-light touch up the man’s side, watching him flinch and twitch.

“Fuck. Tickles,” Tommy said, his voice rough.

Noah bit his lip to hold back his smile as he swung his other leg over Tommy’s before hovering over him in a crouch. Their gazes connected, and Tommy’s lips parted with a small gasp as Noah rocked his erection against his hip.

“Please,” he whispered.

Noah leaned back, then grabbed Tommy’s wrists and stretched his arms up enough to pull his body taut. Using his thumbs against Tommy’s palms, Noah spread his fingers wide, then eased them around the slats in the headboard. “Don’t let go,” he ordered.

Tommy nodded, and Noah watched his fingers tighten until his knuckles went yellow-white.

“So good,” Noah murmured, and Tommy’s dick twitched again. He eased back, then reached behind him for a condom. He ripped the package with his teeth, rolling it on Tommy, then he swept up the lube bottle and popped the cap. It was cold on his palm, so he rubbed it gently between his hands, then grasped Tommy in a gentle hold. He gave a couple of strokes, not nearly enough friction, but that would come later.

Right now, he was developing an addiction to this man, to the way he was so fucking responsive, to the way he was so eager to please. He shuffled back to remove his briefs, then slid up his lover’s body and took his mouth in a furious kiss.

His need was becoming overwhelming. He wasn’t going to be able to hold back for long. He spread his legs a little wider, then forced Tommy to meet his gaze. “Tell me you want to fuck me.”

“Oh Jesus,” Tommy breathed as Noah reached behind him and grabbed Tommy’s cock. He let it slide between his cheeks, catching on his rim a few times, and Tommy’s body shook.

“Tell me,” Noah ordered again.

Squeezing his eyes shut, Tommy let out a slow breath, then opened them again. “I want you. I want my dick in your ass so badly I can taste it. So if you wouldn’t mind…”

Noah quieted him with a nip to the man’s lower lip, then pulled away to stare at where it was plumped up and spit slick. “Do you want it mean?”

Tommy’s entire body froze like his heart had skipped a beat, his lungs still in his chest. Then he shuddered again and shook his head. “No.”

Noah stared just a moment longer, then gave a single nod and lifted up. The head of Tommy’s cock pressed against his hole, and he pushed down. It was an eternal, agonizing stretch as Noah’s body struggled to fit him in. He never did this. Ever. The last time he’d tried, it had been with some stranger in a club after a terrible loss, and Noah had wanted to feel pain. He’d wanted to be punished. It hadn’t lasted. Noah had backed off and instead, let the guy fuck his mouth and come on his face. It hadn’t been the pain he was searching for, but it had been humiliating. He left unsatisfied, filthy, and full of regret.

But this? This was nothing like that. Being with Tommy could never be like that.

This was being filled, possessed, owned by this man as much as Noah owned him.

When he felt the head of Tommy’s cock slip all the way inside, he leaned forward and gripped Tommy by the wrists, gently detaching him from the headboard. He pressed his arms into the mattress, binding him with his own fingers, and thrust down a little harder.

“Fuck. You feel so good,” he murmured, and Tommy’s cock twitched, sending tendrils of pleasure rippling up his spine. He leaned back far enough to stare at Tommy’s face. “Does it feel good to know that you’re the only one who’s ever done this?”

Tommy’s body jolted and his eyes went wide with surprise. “You’re lying.”

Noah shook his head as he finally—finally—bottomed out. His ass pressed down hard against Tommy’s pelvis, and he rolled his hips. The sensation was full—almost too full. It was overwhelming all his senses, but he couldn’t get enough of knowing it was Tommy inside him.

“Just you,” Noah said when he was able to speak. He lifted up, feeling the ache in the stretch, then he shifted forward a bit, and when he sank down, he felt that familiar spark. He’d fucked himself on toys in the past, but this was so much more. He wasn’t close to coming—the pain saw to that—but he had never in his life felt so satisfied. He glanced down at Tommy’s face, then managed something like a smile. “Come on, Thomas. Fuck me.”

Tommy let out a heavy groan, and though he couldn’t dislodge his wrists from Noah’s grip, he didn’t really need to. His feet found purchase on the bed beneath him, and he began to thrust up hard and fast. His hips circled as much as he was able, and Noah squeezed his eyes shut as he lit up with pleasure at every graze of his prostate.

“Yes. God, just like that,” he said, the words tumbling from his lips. “So good, so fucking perfect. Do you know that? Do you know how fucking perfect you are?”

He heard Tommy make a noise somewhere between a laugh and a groan, and he opened his eyes to see him staring with furrowed brows and a half smirk. “You wanna repeat that in English, bud?”

Noah hadn’t realized he’d switched languages, but he didn’t really care. He leaned down and bit the side of Tommy’s neck, making him cry out and thrust up into him harder. “Just like that,” he murmured.

Tommy’s pace increased, and Noah began to rock his dick against Tommy’s stomach, loving the drag through his coarse hair against his flush-warm skin. The feeling began to spiral out from his gut, first into his balls, then to his fingers and toes, which tingled with the impending crash. His face went hot, and he managed to turn his head just in time to pull Tommy into a kiss before grinding down hard, clenching around him, and coming.

Noah wasn’t quite sure when Tommy followed him, but he was aware the man’s dick was softening. Rolling off was awkward, and he landed on his back as Tommy grabbed his dick, holding the condom in place as he pushed up to sit.

“I think you fucked half my brain cells out of my head,” Tommy muttered as he disposed of the rubber in the little bin beside the bed. He flopped back down, his spread arm smacking Noah in the face. Noah batted it away as he rolled onto his side.

There was a faint sheen of sweat over Tommy’s brow, and his lips were trembling ever so slightly at the corners as he held back his grin. “Is this the part where you tell me to get the fuck out so you can…”

Once again, Noah didn’t give him the chance to finish that sentence, silencing him with a kiss. He had a lot of making up to do for how badly he’d fucked this whole thing up. But they could start again. Second chances seemed a lot sweeter than the first. Especially the way Tommy melted into his arms and the way he went soft and pliant as Noah kicked the covers down, then pulled the sheet on top of them.

“That’s gonna be stained in the morning,” Tommy warned, gesturing to where the sheet had gotten sticky wet from Noah’s come on his stomach.

Noah scoffed and cuddled a little closer, brushing his lips along Tommy’s biceps. “I pay my housekeeper really well.”

“Aw, man. That’s so fucked up,” Tommy said with a sleepy laugh, which quickly turned into a yawn. He stretched again, then rolled over to smack his hand over the nightstand until he came back with the remote to Noah’s overhead lamp. “Cool if I…”

“Yes,” Noah said. A gentle, almost kinder ache was settling over his limbs now, soothed by Tommy’s presence, by knowing he’d wake up and the man would still be there. He kissed his shoulder again and sighed. “I’ll make omelets in the morning.”

Tommy made a soft, happy noise and leaned his cheek against the top of Noah’s head. “You’re gonna spoil me, eh?”

“Are you complaining?” Noah asked.

He felt Tommy’s grin against his forehead. “Nah. Why would I do something as ridiculous as that?”


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