Just a Bit Confusing

By: Alessandra Hazard

“I was too busy feeling sorry for myself to notice that he’d been gone for so long. Some friend I am.”

“He might be fine,” Ryan said.

Jamie shot him a skeptical look. “He should have been back by now.”

Ryan sighed, flopping onto his back. “I know. I’m worried, too, but let’s not assume the worst, okay? I think Luke has just been caught up in whatever shady business his father is involved with.

Maybe Whitford’s…associates want to use Luke as leverage in some deal. He might be safe enough.

Arthur told me Whitford didn’t seem all that worried about his son’s well-being, just annoyed by the situation.”

“Is that supposed to make me feel better?” Jamie said with a pinched look.

“No,” Ryan said firmly. “But there’s nothing you or I can do to help Luke even if he needs help.

We don’t know the country or the language, or where to start looking for him. Not to mention that your visa is ending and you literally can’t stay in Russia even if you wanted to.”

Jamie still didn’t look happy, but nodded. “I know. I think Dad has some acquaintances in the MI6. I’ll be more of a help to Luke back home than here. I can give them the description of the man Luke went to meet.”

“Yes,” Ryan said, looking away to hide his relief. Maybe it was selfish, but he didn’t want Jamie to stay here and go around asking questions some people might find too uncomfortable. Ryan liked Luke and was genuinely worried about him, but Jamie’s safety was his priority. It always would be.

“We’ll fly home this afternoon,” Ryan said. “But first we’ll get you something to eat.”

Jamie rolled his eyes with a smile. “Yeah, whatever.” He climbed off the bed. “But first I want a shower.” He looked back at Ryan and smiled coyly, as if he couldn’t quite believe he was saying it.

“Coming?” He stretched his hand out.

There was something surreal about it.

If someone had told him half a year ago that he would be in a Russian hotel, naked, with his equally naked best friend, and that Jamie would invite him to join him in the shower, he would have laughed out loud, thinking it was a bad joke. Half a year ago, he had thought Hannah was the one for him. Now he knew better. There had always been only one person for him. He’d just been too blind to see what had been there all along.

He got out of the bed, his eyes fixed on Jamie.

“Ryan?” Jamie said, cocking his head to the side, his lips slightly parted. God, he was fucking beautiful, and he was all his, Ryan’s.

“I want to kiss you,” Ryan said, taking the offered hand and pulling Jamie flush against him.

Jamie actually blushed. “I want to kiss you, too.”

“Why aren’t we kissing yet, then?”

“I dunno,” Jamie said, looping his arms around Ryan’s neck.

“We must rectify that,” Ryan murmured before doing just that. This kiss wasn’t hungry. It was slow, exploratory and sensual. It felt good in a way that made his stomach ache with affection and love. He turned his head and kissed Jamie deeper, mouth wet and open, losing himself in the sensation, their tongues sliding, Jamie panting and moaning into his mouth, every slick point of contact like a confession:  I love you, I need you, I want you. God. He had loved Hannah, but being with her never felt this way. Being with her never made him feel so fucking whole.

They broke the kiss gently, panting a little and smiling at each other.

“We’re never going to live it down, you know,” Ryan said, sighing. “After all the years of denying it.”

Jamie made a face. “Tristan will be insufferable.”

Ryan chuckled. “He already is.” Though, to be fair, Tristan had been absolutely right:  It’s wrong and weird only for as long as you let it be.

“Yeah, but…” Looking thoughtful, Jamie shrugged. “He did help me figure out a few things, so I guess I should thank him.” He looked Ryan in the eye. “If it weren’t for him, I wouldn’t have even told you how I feel about you. You would probably be still with Hannah and I would still be...”

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