annabirmingham: (leeloo)
[personal profile] annabirmingham
This is an original story I wrote for the recent "Love is always write" event for the m/m group on Goodreads.

We had to choose a prompt based on a photo. You can click on the Goodreads link below to see the photo (although in my head, Gabe looks nothing like the guy in the picture!!) It was the prompt that called to me - you know how much I love enemies-to-lovers stories... Mmm...

Anyhooo, the story is below the cut and you can also read it on Goodreads (you have to be a member of the m/m group to access it) Enjoy!

http://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/882540-anna-birmingham-stuck-on-you




STUCK ON YOU

Genre: Contemporary
Word Count: 8,163
Tags: profession-college, enemies-to-lovers, bullying, hurt-comfort, in-the-closet, homophobia
Content Warning: none
Photo #13 ‘Mud’ – (prompt from Darlene P) That's it! Look at me all covered in mud! This whole trip he's been pushing me or humiliating me in front of all the other archaeology students. I don't know what his problem is but I intend to find out...tonight I will get my revenge.


****

There’s a fine line between love and hate. A few months ago, I'd have said that was a stupid cliché, a bit of poetic nonsense. My world could be easily divided into three groups: people I liked, people I didn't like, and people I didn't know. I believed that right up until the end of my second summer at college—the summer I met Logan.

****

Chip, chip, chip. Scratch, scratch, scratch.

The sound of hammers and picks echoed around me. The midday sun beat down and made the hot and dusty earth that much hotter and dustier. I sat back on my heels, dropped my pick and yanked my t-shirt up and off over my head, using it to wipe the sweat from my face. I wished I'd had the foresight to wear a bandana like several of my fellow students. I adjusted my baseball cap and took a long swallow from my bottle of water. Damn, it was hot. There were twenty of us out on this dig. Twenty of us who really should be doing something better than hacking away at sunbaked earth for days on end. I’d had this amazing idea that being on an archaeological dig for four weeks would be an easier credit than sitting through more lectures and turning in yet another report on the evolution of the Havasupai Indians. I figured that the same reasoning had been true for most of the people here. Sure, I loved history and the culture of our past, but I wasn’t so sure that I wanted to be buried in it. Literally.

I drained the remains of my water and cast a glance around at my fellow diggers. I knew a few from my classes, but there were several new faces—including Logan Buchanan and his delightful jock friends. Why the hell Logan had turned up here was a mystery to me. The guy clearly had no interest in anything that didn’t come with a cheerleader attached. He was one of those guys who had no doubt gotten into Utah State on a football scholarship and was looking for an easy ride.

Logan paused from his digging and looked up to see me watching him. His lip curled and he stood to tie back his dark blond hair into a ponytail.

“Can’t take the heat, Gabriella?”

I shot him a look and pointedly ignored him, squatting back down to resume my own digging. My name is Gabe, but he insisted on calling me Gabriella. I suppose he thought he was being witty. His buddies and some of the girls on the dig did too. They hung on his every word. Not me. I just thought he was an arrogant ass. He knew that I was gay. I didn’t particularly hide it from anyone. I assumed that’s why he got off on calling me a girl’s name. He didn’t like me but to be honest, I didn’t care. I wasn't gonna waste my time trying to be friends with a homophobic jerk.

Not long after, Professor Carter called time for lunch and we all collapsed gratefully under the sparse shade of a nearby fir tree. I made small talk with some of the students, before lying flat on my back to enjoy the heat of the sun on my skin. I covered my eyes with my cap and folded my hands under my head, relishing the few minutes of freedom and laziness before we had to get back to work.

I must have dozed off, because a sharp kick to my boot jolted me back to my senses. I became aware of some snickering above me and tilted my cap back to see Logan and his lackeys laughing down at me.

“Catching up on some beauty sleep, Princess?” Logan smirked. “Although I don’t think any of us want to know what, or who, kept you up last night.”

The lackeys all laughed at this pathetic attempt at humor.

“Don’t worry,” I said, sitting up and shrugging back into my dusty t-shirt, “your delicate ears probably wouldn’t be able to handle it anyway.”

Logan put his hands on his hips and looked me up and down critically. “Delicate? Now who’s calling who delicate?”

Ok, so I may not be as ripped as him, but I’m no slouch. I run and swim, but he didn’t know that. Not that he’d care anyway. He only cared what he looked like and I hated to admit that the guy did look damn good, all blond and chiseled and golden.

Shame that the insides didn’t match up to the fancy packaging.

Logan was still eyeing me with hostility, probably waiting for some sarcastic retort. I really couldn’t be bothered and just pushed past him to return to my site.

Logan flinched as my hand touched his bare arm and he jerked away quickly.

“Don’t worry, it’s not catching,” I said dryly, hoping he’d just get the fuck out of my space and go and annoy some other poor bastard.

****

The site we were at was not far out of Moab, in the center of Utah. We spent each week at a campsite and returned to college on the weekends. A week is about as long as I can stand without an adequate shower. The ones at the campsite spewed out a passable dribble, but weren’t exactly private and it was always a race to get everything clean in the two minutes a quarter bought you.

There was a lake a few minutes walk from camp, so I’d taken to going swimming in there every evening. The cool, clear water was gorgeous after being in the hot sun all day. I was surprised that none of the other students had taken the plunge, so to speak, but part of me also relished the solitude after the noise and cramped confines of the dig.

Since there was no one else around I usually swam naked—it wasn't like I'd brought my swim trunks with me anyway. I would float around lazily, enjoying the contrast between the cool water and the warmth of the late afternoon sun. I lingered for a while, then reluctantly dragged myself out of the lake and onto the rocks where my clothes were. I toweled off quickly and pulled on some clean shorts before turning back towards camp.

I picked my way carefully across the smooth rocks, my bare feet hardly making a sound, so the groan I heard caught me by surprise. I stopped moving and listened, thinking maybe someone was hurt? Stuck? Needed help? I held my breath, hearing the deep moan again, followed by some heavy breathing and the rhythmic slapping of skin on skin. I stifled a laugh as I realized exactly what I was hearing. Someone jerking off. Yeah, all that being at one with nature could certainly bring out the animal instincts. I didn’t want to spoil the moment for whoever the amorous individual was, so I padded silently down the rest of the rocky path before reaching the dirt track and jogging back to camp.

****

That night the heavens opened and we had one hell of a downpour. There’s nothing quite like being in a tent while the rain beats down a few inches from your head; the feeling of being all safe and dry, cocooned in your own little world, safe from the elements.

The rain that night meant two things; firstly, that the humidity was far more tolerable at the work site the following day. Secondly, the site had become a complete and utter mud bath.

****

Humid or not, it was still damn and hot and most of the guys, myself included, had stripped off their shirts by late morning. It was one of the many times that I've been grateful to be male. Girls aren’t afforded that luxury—not unless they want to be verbally assaulted or get arrested. I was also very grateful to be one-quarter Cherokee, because it meant that my olive skin rarely burned and I didn’t have to be quite so liberal with the sunscreen.

Logan, never one to shy away from flaunting his body it seemed, paraded around the site in low slung cargo shorts. He even asked two of the girls to help oil up his back. Two girls. I mean, seriously? I rolled my eyes as the girls smoothed their palms over Logan’s muscled shoulders, lingering way more than was necessary. Logan was oiling his chest, his large hands gliding over sleek muscles, sliding south across his ribs. His voice suddenly cut into my consciousness.

“See anything you like?” he asked with a sneer.

My eyes snapped up to his face and I was surprised to realize I had been following the progress of his hands down his chest, his fingers rubbing through the trail of golden hair low on his stomach. Did I mention that he had an awesome body? Yeah, I was looking. So sue me. I’m only human.

“You know you want some of this,” Logan taunted, sliding the tips of his fingers into the waistband of his shorts. “Don’t you, princess?”

Enough of the crap. I decided to fight fire with fire.

“Yeah, of course I do,” I said dryly, hands on my hips. “It’s all I can do to stop myself from dragging you off to my tent and having my wicked way with you. “ I pointed at the giggling girls oiling his back. “And they can watch.”

Logan’s hands stilled as he stared at me. “In your dreams,” he snarled.

“Oh, but what sweet dreams they would be,” I replied.

Logan shook off the girls and rammed the lid back onto his bottle of sunscreen. “You fucking pervert,” he glowered.

I smiled. “At the risk of sounding very fifth grade, you started it.”

“Whatever, Gabriella.”

I dropped my eyes to his ripped torso and lingered on his chiseled abs. “I think you missed a spot,” I said, pointing to his stomach.

Logan glanced down automatically before covering his crotch with his hands. He flipped me the bird and stormed off to return to his site.

I watched him go with amusement. I didn’t know what the hell his problem was, but baiting him was actually kind of fun.

****

After lunch we moved sites and started work on clearing some of the undergrowth that lead to some caves—caves that we were to explore later in the dig. It was backbreaking work and we were all tired and dirty by evening.

I wanted nothing more than to simply get clean and collapse into my tent with my bedroll and iPod for company.

It seems that fate had something different planned for me.

I headed out to the lake again, as I had done all week, but to my dismay I discovered that a few of the other students had also found my sanctuary and were splashing around, gales of laughter piercing my eardrums. I dropped my towel onto the rocks with a sigh. So much for enjoying a nice quiet, naked swim. I peeled off my sticky clothes, reluctantly leaving my boxer shorts on, and waded into the refreshingly cool water. I didn’t pay much attention to whoever else was in the lake, so I was completely unprepared when the blond head of Logan suddenly surfaced not five feet away from me. I flailed around and spluttered in surprise. Although the water covered our shoulders it was fortunately shallow enough to stand in, so I wasn’t too worried that he would try to drown me. Not yet anyway. Plus we had an audience.

“Well, lookee who we have here,” Logan said in a sing song voice, flicking his long blond hair out of his eyes. “Did you come to play with the big boys?”

“Play? With you?” I scoffed. “As if.”

“What’s wrong with us?” he asked, his hazel eyes narrowing dangerously. “Not good enough for a pretty boy like you, huh?”

Pretty? I’d never thought of myself as pretty. Sort of good-looking, maybe. I had dark eyes and dark hair that some people had said they found attractive. But pretty? Hell no.

I could see a couple of Logan’s buddies swimming over to us, curiosity clearly getting the better of them. Several bikini-clad girls were not far behind. I chose to ignore them too.

Logan saw me looking and glanced over his shoulder at his henchmen, before returning his gaze to mine. “Are you afraid, Gabriella?” he taunted, lips twisting into a cruel smile. “Don’t you wanna know if we’re all naked? Isn’t that what boys like you always think about? Naked straight guys?”

I'll never know what possessed me, but fed up with all his posturing bullshit, I waded in a little closer and stuck out my hand in what I thought was the general vicinity of his groin.

“Only one way to find out,” I said.

The last thing I expected was for my fingers to actually brush against bare flesh. Hard, hot bare flesh. An erection. Fucking hell.

Logan hissed in a breath and his eyes widened as he looked at me in shock.

“Shit!” I jerked my hand back as quickly as the water would allow, thankful that the swirling depths hid my somewhat unintentional groping.

I turned and swam away, not waiting to talk to any of them, but not before I had seen Logan cup his hand around the neck of a bikini-clad lovely and give her a passionate, open-mouthed kiss. It looked like the guy was trying to clean her tonsils. Not that she was complaining.

I held back a shudder. The guy had a major attitude problem and was seriously getting on my nerves. I tried to ignore the fact that I had just touched his dick, although I wasn’t entirely sure if I was grossed out or just the tiniest bit turned on. A dick is still a dick at the end of the day. No doubt he’d be having nightmares about it for weeks.

That thought alone made me smile as I toweled myself off and made my way back to my tent. Thankfully alone.

****

We had another downpour overnight which kept me awake into the small hours. I lay on my back, arms under my head, and listened to the rain thunder down onto the tent roof. I love how the rain always sounds so much more intense when you are in a small, enclosed space. I wondered what Logan and his buds were up to. They were probably all crammed into one of the larger tents, having an impromptu party or make-out session, or something.

I didn’t know why the hell I was thinking about Logan, but a sudden wave of loneliness washed over me. I was pretty much alone on this dig. Sure, I knew people, but none of my best friends had opted to come out here. Even Mark, my ex of three months, had switched majors. He said he didn’t want to hang around places where I would be, but I figured it was more to do with a certain handsome Latino biology major. A Latino whose biology I had seen way more of than planned, when one morning I discovered his very fine ass pounding into another fine ass I knew all too well.

Anyway, that was ancient history. I wasn’t going to dwell on it, or him. It did mean that the only dick I had touched in months, apart from my own, was Logan’s.

I didn’t sleep well for the rest of the night and was tired and antsy the next day. The situation wasn’t improved when Professor Carter decided to split us into smaller groups and send each group off to explore one of the caves we had cleared.

Naturally, I was assigned to Logan's group.

****

To make matters worse, Professor Carter decided to assign me as group leader. Like that wasn’t a big old keg of trouble just waiting to explode. And it did. In a spectacular way.

I liked to consider myself an organized and efficient kind of guy—probably one of the reasons that the Professor singled me out—and nothing pissed me off quicker than people not pulling their weight, or being deliberately disruptive. Logan naturally excelled at both of these things.

We were scoping out our cave, looking for any signs of habitation, arrowheads, stone markings, whatever, and would log them or take samples if we could. It was dark and gloomy in the caves, still stiflingly hot, but a welcome relief from the relentless summer sun.

The importance of what we were doing clearly eluded Logan and his limited brain capacity, as he quickly got bored and started to wander around, flicking twigs and dead insects at everyone, me in particular. I tolerated it for as long as I could, but when a beetle bounced off my ear I rounded on him and threw my hands in the air in exasperation.

“Are you going to do ANY work, Logan, or is your sole contribution to this dig going to be acting like a total pain in the ass?”

Logan smiled humorlessly. “Maybe I just don’t like taking orders. Especially from you.”

“Well, tough shit. Professor Carter asked me to lead this team, and I’m damn well gonna do it.”

Logan swaggered over to me, his eyes glinting in the dull light. “Ass-kissing old Carter now?” He laughed. “Does it get you extra credit? Probably gets you off at the same time, boy like you.”

The three other guys in our group had stopped working at this point and were watching our exchange, a mixture of wariness and glee on their faces. I got it. A shouting match was always fun to watch, wherever you were.

The fact that Logan had once again insulted me and called me a brown nose pissed me off. Working hard and doing your best were just what you did where I came from.

“No, you idiot. It’s called doing the right thing.” I pointed down at his abandoned tools. “Can’t you bring yourself to be even a little bit helpful and do some goddamned work?”

Logan shrugged. “What’s it worth?”

“Oh my god, are you twelve?”

Logan said nothing, just looked at me, the silent challenge clear in his eyes. Make me.

“Gabe, just leave it.” One of the other guys put his hand on my shoulder. “We can do what we need to do without him, if necessary.”

“Yeah, Gabe.” Logan said my name like it was a dirty word. “Listen to your boyfriend here.”

Christ, did the guy ever let up?

“He’s not my boyfriend, you jackass,” I said angrily. I could feel the blood starting to rise in my veins.

Logan sauntered back to his site and picked up a fork, casually swinging it back and forth. “No, from what I hear your boyfriend dropped you like a hot brick when he found himself a younger, more willing piece of ass.”

That hurt.

“What is your goddamned problem?” I shouted at him. “Get the fuck out of here if you’re not gonna do anything productive.”

“Make me,” he said—out loud this time.

“You. Outside. Now.” I strode over and grabbed the front of his t-shirt, yanking him towards to front of the cave.

I waved at the other students over my shoulder and said, “You guys keep working,” not really expecting them to do anything of the kind.

I half pushed, half pulled Logan outside, surprised at how easily he came. I shoved him away as soon as we got into the fresh air, the bright sunlight temporarily blinding us both. Logan stumbled slightly on the sticky, muddy ground.

“Ok. Let’s have it,” I said. “What the fuck is wrong with you? I’ve had it up to here"—I waved my hand above my head—“with your fucking attitude, you goddamned prick.”

“Don’t call me a prick,” Logan glowered.

“Why not? You’re acting exactly like one. You’ve acted like nothing else ever since I’ve known you.”

“Yeah, well maybe you don’t know everything,” Logan snarled, moving closer to point his finger in my face.

“I know I don’t, but then neither do you.”

“Whatever, Gabriella.”

“And don’t call me that,” I snapped, pushing his hand away.

“Whatever, Princess,” Logan retorted with a sly grin. He poked me in the chest so that I moved backwards. “Is 'Princess' better? Suits you, you know.”

Logan gave me one last push and I lost my footing on the greasy ground. My feet slid out from under me and I felt the world tilt as I fell, landing flat on my back in the mud. Logan laughed, and that was too much. My temper got the better of me and I lunged at his legs, knocking him down on his ass. He cursed and tried to scrabble free, squirming around, his fingers digging into the dirt. I wasn’t about to let him get off that easily, though, and raised my fist to try and hit him. Logan blocked me, rolled me over and shoved a handful of mud in my face. I tried to buck him off, but he was straddling my thighs and weighed at least thirty pounds more than I did.

“Get off me, you fucker!” I glared at him, my hands trying to grab hold of something, anything, but they kept sliding off his slippery skin.

Logan grabbed my flailing arms and pinned them over my head. As he stared down at me, he almost looked liked he was enjoying this. The intimacy of the position we were in hadn’t completely escaped my attention either and my body, traitor that is was, began to take notice. That made me even angrier and I twisted violently, trying to get away, but only succeeded in getting myself even muddier.

“Logan,” I said, the threat clear.

“Do you give?” he drawled.

“What?”

“Do you give?”

“Oh, for fuck’s sake. Yes. Whatever. Just get the fuck off me.”

Logan sat back and surveyed his handiwork with satisfaction. I knew I was covered from head to toe. I could even feel mud in my ears. Logan moved to stand, but not before he had grabbed another handful of mud and ground it into my chest. Looking pleased, he gave me a final glance before walking away—away from the cave and back towards the camp. I just lay there and watched him go, my temper fighting with the confusion I felt. I had to wonder what atrocities I had committed in a previous life to be cursed with Logan in this one.

****

The campsite showers were definitely not going to cut it when it came to washing off an acre’s worth of mud, so I headed straight for the lake. Not even pausing to strip off my clothes, I dove straight into its waiting depths. Even on the short trip down from the cave, the mud had caked and started to dry in the heat. It made my skin itch. Ugh. Why some people willingly had full body mud-wraps was beyond me.

Once under the water, I wrenched off my caked t-shirt and shorts and used them to scrub the rest of the mud off my body. Mission accomplished, I threw my clothes onto a nearby rock where they landed with a splat. At least it was Thursday and tomorrow I could get home and clean everything properly—myself included. How I was going to endure another couple of weeks of Logan and his piss-poor attitude was something I didn’t want to dwell on.

That evening, our last on camp until the following week, we had a cookout. We grilled some burgers and followed that up by toasting marshmallows over the campfire. I love toasting marshmallows. In one way it seems so childish, but I don’t believe you should ever grow out of enjoying the sticky, sweet goo that strings between your fingers and lips.

There’s also something incredibly timeless and romantic about a campfire; the crackling embers that bathe everything in a soft, glowing light, shadows dancing across faces.

I sat on a log and twisted my stick around like an expert, careful not to let the marshmallow melt too much on one side. I tested the temperature of it with my tongue before sliding the outer layer off with my teeth. Damn, it was delicious. I sucked the sticky center off of my stick and glanced across the campfire to see Logan watching me. Predictably, he had a girl sitting between his legs, his arms draped around her shoulders as she held a stick into the fire on the side opposite from me.

I held Logan’s gaze as I finished my marshmallow. We hadn’t spoken since the mud fight earlier and I was more than happy to keep it that way. Besides, Logan was far more bearable when he kept his mouth shut. Dressed in faded jeans and a dark t-shirt, his blond hair hanging loose to his shoulders, he looked good. Very good. I had no doubt he knew it, too.

Maybe it was the slightly magical situation we were in, or maybe it was just the beer, but I found myself wanting to toy with him. I skewered another marshmallow, cooked it and then ate it with as much deliberate sensuality as I could. I wrapped my tongue around the stick, slowly sucking the marshmallow off into my mouth. I licked my fingers clean, all the while keeping my gaze fixed on Logan. His face was like stone and I don’t think he blinked once. I reached down to grab another marshmallow to toast and out of the corner of my eye I saw Logan quietly excuse himself and stalk away from the campfire, hands jammed into his pockets.

I ate a little more and drank way more beer than I probably should have, but the object of my entertainment sadly didn’t reappear. The alcohol gave me a restless buzz and I felt bored with the mundane conversations around me. I decided to call it a night and headed back towards my tent.

I wound my way carefully through the dark trees, trying not to trip over any fallen branches in my somewhat inebriated state. I had almost made it back to the main campsite when my foot landed in a shallow hole and I wobbled dangerously. “Shit,” I cursed loudly then started to giggle at my own stupidity. I flailed and grabbed onto the nearest tree to avoid doing a face-plant onto the stony ground.

I was so consumed with trying to keep upright that I failed to notice a tall, dark shadow closing in behind me.

“What the fuck do you think you’re doing?” Logan growled into my ear.

Oh crap. I tried to swing around but my body didn’t obey my brain. “Uh… going to bed?” I turned my head to look at him, but he leaned into my back, pushing me closer to the tree, one arm resting next to my head.

“No. Don’t look at me,” he said in a low voice.

“Why not?” I tried to duck under his arm but he pinned me against the tree. “Get off me you dick,” I said angrily.

Logan ignored me and leaned closer. “Why were you doing that?”

“Doing what?” I tried to wriggle away from him but just found that I was scratching my face against the tree trunk. I gave up trying to free myself and played along, hoping Logan would eventually get bored and wander off again.

“Back there.” I could picture Logan jerking his head in the direction of the fire.

“What do you mean?” I said innocently.

“That thing you were doing. What was all that about?”

“What was what about?”

Logan shifted his weight away from my back and for a moment I feared he was going to punch me, trip me, or shove me to the ground. Instead, he grabbed my arm and whipped me around so that I faced him. My eyes roamed his face. His chest was heaving, and he looked angry, sure, but his hazel eyes also glittered with something else. Frustration? Desperation?

“You know what I mean,” he bit out.

“Not really,” I said. “Can I go now?”

Logan seemed unaware that he still held onto my wrist. I wasn’t willing to consider what he could do to me, out here, away from everyone. I pictured myself lying in a bloody heap, Logan having beaten me to a pulp, no one discovering me until next morning. So, when his lips suddenly crashed down on mine, it took my breath away. In more ways than one.

Logan was kissing me like his life depended on it. His passionate assault sliced through the alcoholic fog in my brain and overwhelmed my senses. I couldn’t help the moan that rumbled up from my chest as his tongue demanded entrance to my mouth. Damn, but this boy could kiss. My lips opened willingly and I felt Logan shudder as our tongues touched for the first time. He tasted delicious. More delicious than I could ever describe. The rough bark of the tree bit into my back, but I didn’t care. I wanted this kiss to go on and on. My free hand snaked up around his waist and pushed up under the back of his t-shirt, seeking bare skin. My fingers gently caressed the satiny skin of his lower back. I was overcome with a rush of lust so powerful it nearly knocked me off my feet. I wanted Logan. I wanted him so much that it hurt. My rigid cock was wedged painfully in my jeans. I could feel his answering erection against my stomach. Logan must have read my thoughts because he grabbed my hand and jammed it into the front of his jeans, forcing it down to his cock. I instantly curled my fingers around his flesh.

Logan wrenched his mouth away from mine and gave a strangled sob as he buried his face into my neck. His dick twitched and he came almost immediately, pulse after pulse of semen soaking my hand and the inside of his jeans. His breath was ragged and his heart was hammering against my chest. My body was screaming for the same release. I rocked back and forth in frustration, trying to find the friction I needed to get me off.

Suddenly there was open space all around as Logan whirled away from me. He looked at me in horror, eyes wide, wiping his mouth with the back of his hand.

“Fuck,” he whispered in disbelief.

He turned and ran, disappearing off into the darkness, leaving me cold, alone and aching desperately for him.

****

Logan wasn’t at the site the following morning. After a night spent tossing and turning, my dreams haunted by golden hair, naked skin and spurting cocks, I wasn’t in the best of moods. My pounding head and Logan’s absence just made things worse.

“Where’s Logan Buchanan?” I asked Professor Carter when he did his rounds to the sites mid-morning.

“He said he had to leave,” said the Professor, mopping his sweaty forehead. “Family emergency.”

My heart sank. It could have been a legitimate reason, but I doubted it. I was pretty sure that it had more to do with our late night shenanigans in the woods. I guessed it had been as much of a shock to him as it had to me. At least I had prior experience jerking off another man—I didn’t believe I could say the same for Logan.

“Oh. Ok,” I said to Professor Carter. “Guess we’ll just have to get along without him, then.”

The Professor nodded and headed off.

It was only three days, after all. Three days until the start of a new week at the dig. Funny how, before, I’d been willing away the time I had to spend with Logan. Now the weekend dragged ahead of me and Monday seemed like a year away.

Three days until Monday. I was certain that Logan would show up then. No one could afford to drop a class credit halfway through. That would have been crazy.

****

Only, Monday came, and still no Logan.

“He’s sick,” I heard one of his jock friends tell the girls—the same ones who had been oiling up his back what seemed like a lifetime ago. “He’s not coming out here this week.”

“Sick? Logan?” I said loudly, cringing inside as they all swung around to look at me.

“Disappointed?” one of the guys shot back with a grin.

I found that I was. But I feigned casual indifference, shrugged and left them to their conversation.

A week. What was I going to do for a whole week? My stomach felt like lead. After the anticipation of seeing Logan again, all my adrenaline had nowhere to go and I suddenly felt nauseous. I sat down heavily on the rocky ground and cradled my head in my hands. What the hell was I doing? I couldn’t believe I was feeling sick over some guy—or rather, the lack of some guy. A guy that I wasn’t sure I even liked.

“Are you ok?” The hand of one of the girls lightly touched my shoulder. “You’re not sick, too, are you?”

I was, but not in the way she was thinking. I shook my head and gave her a weak smile. “I’m fine, but thanks.”

I gave myself a mental kick in the ass and stood back up. I had to get it together and carry on. I was being pathetic. No point in mooning over someone who probably wasn’t even giving me a second thought.

Either way, it was the longest week I had ever experienced. As Friday gradually drew nearer, I considered asking one of the jocks for Logan’s phone number, but I couldn’t face the questions that would raise. Neither of us had exactly hid our dislike of each other.

I spent the weekend doing laundry and catching up with my friends. I went out a few times, but got frustrated with myself when all I would do was scan the crowds looking at every tall guy with blond hair. I couldn’t believe I was obsessing like this. I was pissing myself off. I drank away the remainder of the weekend, counting the hours until I left for the dig again early Monday morning.

****

I swung my car into the parking lot shortly before eight. I was the first to arrive. I drummed my fingers on the wheel, debating whether to wait in the car or to head on over to the usual meeting place. I felt a bit cooped up after the drive, so I got out of the car and swung my backpack over my shoulder—just as another car crunched into the parking lot.

I looked up quickly, heart pounding. It was a black jeep that I knew belonged to one of Logan’s buddies. I watched as two, then three guys got out. Finally, a fourth person unfolded himself from the back of the jeep.

Logan.

My mouth went dry and I just watched as he straightened up and stretched, his t-shirt riding up to expose an inch of bare stomach. He grabbed his bag from the trunk before turning around.

He saw me immediately. He faltered slightly as his eyes fixed on mine. One of the other guys moved in front of Logan, breaking our eye contact, as they organized the rest of their stuff. It was excruciating. I wanted to say so much to him, but I couldn’t. I didn’t dare. I just stood and watched.

As more and more students arrived, people started to head up to the campsite—me and Logan included. He kept his distance, although I remained achingly aware of every move he made and every person he spoke to. He seemed quieter, more subdued than he had been the previous time I saw him. I began to wonder if all the talk of him being ill was actually true.

Despite the continuous blistering heat we were experiencing, Logan never stripped off his t-shirt that day. He was usually the first to parade his assets, so his modesty stuck out like a sore thumb. To me, at least. He also never came closer to me than about twenty feet. There were no jibes, no sarcastic remarks. A few days went by and I had started to lose hope that I would ever get the chance to talk to him, check if he was ok. I never once considered that he would eventually corner me—which is exactly what he did.

I was leaving the toilet block Wednesday evening, having washed up before bed, when I heard his voice from the shadows.

“Gabe. Can we talk?”

I had to let my eyes adjust to the darkness before I saw him leaning against the wall next to the doorframe.

“Hi… yeah, sure,” I said, flicking my towel over my bare shoulder, not missing the way his eyes followed the line of the towel down my naked chest. “Where?”

“Uh….” Logan looked around anxiously. He clearly hadn’t thought this through.

“How about the cave?” I suggested. That was far enough away from camp that we wouldn’t encounter any eavesdroppers and Logan could say what he needed to say.

He nodded his agreement.

We walked in silence, Logan with his hands shoved deeply into his jean pockets while mine gripped tightly on to the ends of my towel. I wanted to touch him, more than anything, but I also wanted to hear what was on his mind.

The ground had dried up over the past week and there was nothing left of the mud from our previous encounter. We picked our way carefully to the mouth of the cave. I was grateful for the almost full moon which lit our way.

Once we got inside, Logan sat on a rock and I leaned against the wall a little way from him, not wanting the temptation of being too close.

“I missed this,” Logan said wistfully, gesturing around at the cave.

I smiled. “Yeah, kind of grows on you, I guess.”

“Yeah.”

Silence stretched awkwardly between us. Logan hung his head, his blond hair falling forward to curtain his face.

“Are you ok?” I asked quietly.

Logan pushed his hair out of his eyes and finally looked up at me. “I think so. I just don’t know where to start.”

I shrugged. “The beginning?”

“I knew you’d say that,” he smiled at me. The first real smile I’d ever seen from him. It tugged at my heart—and my groin.

“Yeah, well… “ I tilted my head and encouraged him to continue.

“I’m sorry,” Logan said in a rush.

“For what?”

“Just… I dunno… everything. Things I said, stuff I did. People expect me to be a certain way, so I just act like that person. I’ve always been that way.”

“Sure, I understand.”

“No, no you don’t. I am that person. I want to be that person. I was that person. Until I came here.”

Until he met me.

“You’re still the same person, Logan. Everything that you are now, you were before.” I felt like I was talking in riddles, but it kind of made sense to me.

Logan shook his head, his hair hanging down to cover his face again.

“Sure you are. Parts of you just got moved around into a different order, different... uh… priority.”

Logan scuffed his sneaker against the dirt. “Maybe.”

I squatted down beside him and rested my hand on his arm. “Look, let’s cut to the chase here. You ever kissed a guy before?”

Logan shook his head again, still studying the dirt under his feet.

“But you wanted to, right?”

It may have been dark in the cave, but I could still see the redness flush his cheeks. “Right,” he whispered.

“More than you wanted to kiss the girls?”

His silence said it all.

“Hey, look at me,” I gently grasped his chin and turned his face towards me, brushing back his long hair with my other hand. His eyes closed as I touched him. “lf you need to talk, who could understand better than me?”

I stroked my fingers across his cheek. Now that he was here, I couldn’t stop touching him.

“It’s ok,” I continued. “You are who you are. Screw the rest of the world. You can’t predict what they’re gonna think. Let them deal.”

Logan smiled again and dimples creased his cheeks. He opened his eyes to look at me. “I almost believe you.”

I raised an eyebrow. “Only almost?”

“Yeah. I don’t give a shit about the rest of the world. I just worry about the people in my little part of it. What they’ll think of me.”

“The people who care will be there no matter what. Believe me, I know. The rest of them? Well, they’ll just have to find another poor bastard to project their delusions upon.”

Logan laughed and the sound made my heart stutter. “Dude, I should have known a geek like you would put it so eloquently.”

I ran my fingers through his hair again, tightening them so that I pulled his head back slightly. I leaned forward to rasp in his ear, “And I never knew that a jock like you had the word ‘eloquent’ in his vocabulary.”

Logan grabbed my wrist and squeezed, forcing me to release my grip on his hair. “Is that so?” he said, his hazel eyes gleaming with humor and something darker, more sensuous.

We paused, looking at each other, our breathing ragged and shallow. I could feel the tension rising, the pressure building, just waiting for that little push to tip it over and make it explode. My eyes dropped to his parted lips. I wanted to kiss him so badly, but part of me wanted him to make the final leap.

That was before he touched me, trailing a finger across my bare chest. Fire consumed me and I couldn’t take it anymore. My control snapped and I grabbed at his hair again, pulling his mouth down onto mine.

We both moaned at the contact. He tasted even more delicious than I remembered. My tongue swept across his lips and he opened his mouth willingly, letting my tongue slide in to tangle with his. My legs went weak and I lost my balance, falling backwards onto my ass. Logan followed in a flash, pushing me down onto my back so he could lie on top. The ground was hard and gritty beneath my skin, but I honestly didn’t care. How could I? Logan was writhing above me, devouring my mouth. I raised my knees to cradle him more comfortably against my groin. Logan groaned deep in his chest and rolled his hips, the hardness of his erection bumping into mine.

He slid his mouth down my cheek, his hot breath caressing my ear. “I want you so fucking much,” he whispered. “I tried not to, but I can’t help myself.”

“Me either.” My hands curled around his back, digging under his t-shirt, desperate to find bare skin. “I want to touch you so bad.”

Logan pushed himself up to his knees and stripped his t-shirt up and over his head, flinging it behind him. He sat back and looked down at me. “Go ahead,” he said.

My hands ran over his rippled stomach in admiration. He really did have the most amazing body. I smoothed my palms over his ribs and cupped his pectoral muscles. “You’re so beautiful,” I murmured.

Logan cocked an eyebrow. “I know,” he said with a grin.

I tweaked his nipples hard, making him moan and wince at the same time. “You’re also an ass,” I said. I sat up, leaning forward to push Logan down and roll him under me. “Beautiful. Hot. Sexy,” I punctuated my words with kisses to his chest, “but still an ass.”

Logan bit out another moan and closed his eyes. “I know,” he said again, “but please don’t stop.”

“Not a chance.” Faced with all this gorgeous maleness before me, there was no way on earth I was going to stop. I lay my bare chest down on his and kissed him again. Logan wound his legs around mine and held me close, rocking his hips back and forth. His hands were everywhere; tugging on my hair, sliding down my back, clutching my ass inside my sweat pants. I couldn’t remember ever being so turned on in my life.

Logan’s fingers slid into the crack of my ass and his hips jerked under me. “Oh hell… oh crap… oh no…” he groaned, biting his lips, his eyes squeezed tightly closed. His whole body pulsated and I felt wet heat bloom under my crotch. Logan wrenched his mouth away, panting hard. “Oh god, I’m sorry... so sorry.”

I could feel his heart hammering against me. I stroked his cheek and ran my thumb over his swollen lips. “Hey, no problem.”

“I can’t believe I…” Logan began, then shook his head, looking up at me in awe. “It’s almost embarrassing.”

I smiled. “You look damn sexy when you come.”

His kissed my hand. “And what about you?”

Well, sure, I was still desperate to get off; my body wanted nothing more than to rut against him, over and over. But I could save it if he felt awkward. “It’s ok,” I said.

Logan’s eyes flared. “No. It is not ok,” he said, and flipped me on to my back, ripping down my pants to stare at my rigid cock. “Oh, fuck.”

I guessed he’d never seen another erection up close and personal, either. My cock was so hard, he probably only had to breathe on it and I would come.

“Do I turn you on?” Logan asked in wonder.

“Oh, hell yes,” I said in a rush. “Look at me. What do you think?”

Logan ran his fingers down my stomach, pausing a fraction of an inch away from my swollen cock. I whimpered and tried to push myself into his hand.

“I think… that this is the sexiest thing I’ve ever seen.” He closed his hand around my dick and gave two or three gentle tugs. That was all it took. I arched off the ground with a cry as my orgasm burst out of me, stream after stream shooting across my stomach. I gasped for breath as Logan lowered his head and kissed me again. I wound my hands into his hair and held him close, nuzzling against his stubbly cheek, feeling the strength and weight of him above me.

“Wow. Just, wow,” I breathed.

“Good?” Logan asked, licking at my ear.

“You have no idea.”

“Oh, I think I do,” he said, guiding my hand down to his damp jeans, where his dick had already started to harden again.

I laughed. “And here I was thinking you hated me.”

Logan ducked his head, looking a little sheepish. “I’ve thought of you in many, many ways over the past couple of weeks, but never in hate. Not once.”

“Seriously?”

“Seriously. You got so far under my skin I couldn’t stop thinking about you. It pissed me off.”

“I know that feeling well, “ I said, rubbing my thumb up and down the swollen fly of his jeans.

“I bet.” Logan closed his eyes as my fingers started to pull his zipper.

“I missed you, though. Last week,” I admitted. “It wasn’t much fun without you here.”

“Yeah. Life and soul, that’s me,” Logan grinned.

I paused for a moment. “Was it because of me? Because of what happened in the woods? Is that why you stayed away?”

“Yeah.” Logan pushed his jeans to his knees and lowered himself back down onto me. “Yeah. I needed time to think. Time away from you.”

That caused me to stop for a second. I put my hand on his chest to slow his progress. “If you need more time, I can wait.”

“Hell no. When I jump, I jump. I just knew that if I hung around you, I’d do something crazy.”

I wriggled out of my sweatpants and with a shudder we finally lay naked, chest to chest, cock to cock, on the dusty floor of the cave. “What, crazy like this?”

“Uh huh, exactly like this,” Logan muttered as he gathered me up in his arms. “Fucking crazy. I love it.”

I clung to him, happiness spreading through me like warm sunshine. It surprised me how right this felt. I was in serious trouble. There was still so much I wanted to say, but I settled for the obvious.

“You’re an idiot,” I whispered against his lips.

Logan hovered a millimeter away from my mouth. “I know. Princess.”

****
THE END
****

ETA - these are the guys as I picture them in my head - Gabe and Logan :)

Date: 2012-07-15 01:22 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ennisjackgal.livejournal.com
*whimpers*

This is the first non-Brokeback slash I've ever read...and I loved it! That was so hot!

Date: 2012-07-15 01:42 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] annabirmingham.livejournal.com
Thanks KK! I am proud that I was able to take your non-BBM slash virginity *snort*
A x

Date: 2012-07-15 01:45 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ennisjackgal.livejournal.com
:D

It's all yours, babe! xxx

Date: 2012-09-02 06:34 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] eandj.livejournal.com
wow- I just now saw this and yes- it is hot but also tender and lovely
thanks
Paula

Date: 2012-09-04 06:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] annabirmingham.livejournal.com
Thanks so much, Paula. Glad you enjoyed it!
Anna x

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