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Copyright ©2012 Willa Okati
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"Don't move." Ronan dipped the tip of his tongue into the dent of Lucas's navel. "Yet."
He held the man still with the weight of his body, one arm over long bare legs covered in fine dark hair, and one hand on his chest, above his heart. Salty, buttery caramel notes burst on his taste buds as he lapped out the pocket of sweet syrup he'd drizzled on the man, drop by drop.
"Ah God, Ronan..." Lucas took him by the hair. He shuddered, fingers flexing, strands of hair flowing loosely through them. His lips were parted, and his dark eyes hooded, almost closed.
"Look at you," Ronan said. His lips touched Lucas as the consonants fell, toffee-flavored, from his tongue. "I knew you'd be gorgeous like this."
Lucas's hand fluttered, coming to rest hard on the back of Ronan's head. Not pulling his hair, but pushing at him. "Tickles."
"Does it?" Ronan kept his hair long, curling down his collar. Just long enough to tease with. He bent his head, brushing the long fringe across Lucas's bare stomach, bare chest, bare legs... bare everything. Lucas hissed and bucked him. His cock tapped Ronan on the chin and nudged at his lips. Please, pretty please?
Ronan swirled one lick in a spiral around Lucas's rigid shaft and bumped the length with the tip of his nose, inhaling deep. "Not yet," he breathed, using his baritone to unfair advantage. This close, so deep, the sub-note vibrations would reverberate against skin, and --
He laughed in delight and mischief, pressing Lucas back down. "I didn't say you could move yet."
Lucas groaned. He threw one arm over his face, hiding his eyes in the crook of his elbow. His body rippled with the movement, undulating in a sine wave of smooth sun-bronzed skin atop the dark silk sheets cast carelessly across the pale blonde hardwood of the floor they lay on together. He licked his lips once, twice, and again, and was still rusty when he asked, "When?"
"Look at me first," Ronan said, guiding Lucas's arm away from his face. He wanted to see all of him. Nothing hidden, from the heavy droop of his lashes to the true-black curlicues and twists of hair clinging to his sweat-dampened cheeks and forehead. "Almost. But dessert first."
Lucas's lips curved into a bow, higher on one side than the other. He knotted his fist in Ronan's hair, finally, tight, prickling-pulling. "Get on with it."
"You're lucky I like you in a bossy mood." Ronan brushed his nose against Lucas's and slipped his tongue inside Lucas's mouth with a corkscrew of tongue to let him taste the mingled flavors of sugar and salt.
Not looking -- he didn't have to, he knew where everything was -- Ronan stretched out one arm toward the hearth to pick up the last in a line of tall earthenware shot glasses he'd lined up to keep warm by the embers of the fire. He tipped Lucas's head back, thumb careful under his jaw, Lucas's eyelashes brushing his cheek, Lucas's moan more delicious than the toffee.
Slowly, slowly, Ronan tipped the shot glass and drizzled melted chocolate, cream and cinnamon in elaborate swirls over the taut stomach he'd just lapped clean. The stomach, and further, tracing a wavering line from navel to groin. He upended the glass there, trailing circles of the finest chocolate in a spiral up Lucas's straining cock. One fat drop poised at the head.
Lucas's hand tightened, jerking Ronan's hair. "God, Ronan," he breathed. "Have pity and have me --"
Ronan nipped at Lucas's full lower lip. "I said 'dessert first,'" he reminded the man. He put the glass aside. "But what fun are the rules if you don't break them?"
Traveling down Lucas's stomach fast, fast, before the liquid chocolate could drip and run away, Ronan smeared the creamy goodness across his cheeks and chin, and buried his nose in Lucas's crisp pubic hair to breathe in the scent of soap, man, and sweets. He rose in a one-armed pushup, braced over the man coming undone beneath him, tongue out to taste the trembling bead of purest chocolate...
...And blinked awake. To find he'd been piping bittersweet chocolate garnish, meant to go on a pan of truffles, over the length and breadth of his right hand. At one point there might have been a design. Now it just looked... unfortunate.
A hand was attached to his wrist. Not his usual hand. That one remained covered in chocolate. Drippy chocolate. The hand clamped onto him belonged to Tiko, his second-in-command, and they both had other things in mind. Such as stopping him from wasting another quarter-pound of Belgium's finest.
"There. Do I have your attention now?" Tiko guided Ronan's hand over a sheet of wax paper where the Daily Oops could drip more or less without need for mop and bucket. More need for mopping.
Ronan sighed. He spread his fingers wide. "Again, huh?"
"You think? Now see, I just work here. Me, I am not the boss. I don't pay the bills, uh-uh. But what I do know is that this sugary stuff is supposed to go on top of this other sugary stuff, and you are not paying even a little bit of attention to me, are you? Dreamer man. Move." Tiko took up the remnants of the piping sleeve and elbowed Ronan out of the way.
Ronan let Tiko take over. Better that than wasting more resources, and trust him, he would have. Even nudged aside, he still had a good view of the storefront with its two-person tables and full-frontal glass window reflecting back the streetlights. Come to find out once he'd moved this particular worktable to just the right spot, there was nowhere to position himself without a first-class, grade-A look at...
Well... at him. Lucas. In his usual spot to the far left of the window, straddling one of the chairs turned around backward and talking in low tones to his companion. Whom Ronan categorically refused to call Lucas's lover, partner, significant other or boyfriend despite unfortunate evidence to the contrary, because honestly? One look at the man's lips twisted in their perpetual scowl and the carelessness with which he treated the one chocolate he ordered every night to give him an excuse to take up space with Lucas, and...
Okay, Ronan had a tendency to drift off even when he was awake. Fully awake. In the real world. Still. He might not be Mr. GQ, and the sum total of his experience might be ninety-percent chocolate and ten percent worldly wisdom, but even he knew eyebrows should not resemble a pair of caterpillars chasing each other.
What did Lucas see in what's-his-name? Said name being something else Ronan firmly refused to learn. Bad enough to despise the guy for blocking a chance. If he knew the man's name, it'd be personal.
Tiko clicked his tongue. Great. He'd been watching too, and now there would be no stopping him putting in his two cents' worth. "For what it's worth, I don't get it either."
Ronan stripped off his glove reluctantly. He'd have liked to lick it clean, but latex and ganache didn't go together as well as the makers of sex aids would have their market believe, and besides: health codes. "You think?"
Tiko scoffed. "The man's a bag of dicks. Not your honeybun. The other one. Ferret Face. Grizzly Brow."
"I thought they looked more like caterpillars."
"If I ever see a caterpillar that size with that much fur in nature? You can try and catch me but you'd better be fast, 'cause I'm going to run screaming."
Ronan winced. "Thanks for that. Now I'm imagining ferrets racing around a bear's head."
"So am I." Tiko wrinkled his nose. He wielded the chocolate with a deft hand and still kept one eye out on the front table. Watching, with Ronan, Lucas and whoyoumaycallit bent close over the table, talking fast, too low to be heard but not exactly conveying a picture of perfect happiness. "I am not encouraging your habit of daydreaming, understand? Someday I'm going to come in here and find you have wrought unspeakable havoc with a mini blowtorch and some helpless, hapless, hopeless, poor undeserving little creme brulee treats. But at least you picked a pretty one."
Ronan watched Thingummy Weaselpillar jab a finger at Lucas. Lucas gave back as good as he got, but after a few weeks of watching the guy, he knew when the man was enjoying a scrap and when he just wanted it over and done with, when he was sick and tired of fighting and maybe didn't even know what they were arguing about anymore.
"Bag. Of. Dicks," Tiko pronounced. He took Ronan's glove from him, disposed of it along with the empty chocolate piper, and gave Ronan a gentle push toward the employee restrooms. "Go on, wash up. I'll keep an eye out until you get back."
Ronan licked his lips. It'd only been a daydream, but he could swear he still tasted sugary-salty toffee, chocolate and caramel. "I could be better for him," he said. "Except for the part where I've been eye-stalking him for a couple of months. I mean, wouldn't that put you off?"
"He's the one who comes to your shop. You don't go chasing him. And eye-stalking? Sounds alien and disgusting." Tiko swatted the back of his head. "Would you go? Shop won't run itself."
Ronan's hands were dirty anyway. He feinted a swat back that Tiko dodged nimbly, without spilling a single truffle on the tray now balanced in his hand. "You're ridiculous. Put that tray in the display case, and you can take off for the night."
"Now see? This is why I continue to work for you, Walter Mitty." Tiko planted a smacking kiss on Ronan's forehead. "And hell yes, you'd be better for him."
Ronan sneaked one more peek out the open door between kitchen and display case. Huh. Stoat Forehead's chair was pushed back, the honeycomb brittle he'd bought half-crumbled in its crinkled paper wrapper abandoned, his glass mug of simple roast empty. Gone like Bond. Leaving Lucas there alone. Lucas's arms were folded tight over his chest, his head down, and his neat, arched eyebrows drawn together in a dark stare at the chocolate carnage. He rubbed his face and sighed. Tension leaked away from him, but it didn't seem to make him happier. More the opposite.
Ronan picked up a damp towel and wiped his hands. An excuse to stand there, sure, but...
Oh shit oh shit. Lucas glanced up. He must have felt Ronan's eyes on him. People did that, didn't they? He'd forgotten.
But before Ronan could get a proper panic worked up, Lucas shook his head, offered Ronan another of his crooked smiles, and plucked the uneaten wafer from its cup. He popped it between his lips...