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J. Rocci

The Courting Series #1


Copyright © 2017 by J. Rocci


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This book is a work of fiction and any resemblance to persons, living or dead, or places, events or locales is purely coincidental. The characters are productions of the author’s imagination and used fictitiously.

Contains Adult Reading Material

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Author's Note

Josh and Garrison are two of my favorite characters to write: former Marines, one a cop, the other a lawyer, both reserved but so obviously in love. Commitment is the first short story in the Courting Series, but can be read as a stand-alone story. I originally wrote this for Torquere Press' Valentine’s Day Sips, released in February 2010. I hope you enjoy Commitment, and check out the other stories in the Courting Series:









"Yo, Dabbs," Sergeant McGucken calls out just before Josh can slip through the police station's front door. "I can't find your notes on the Lawrence kid's DUI. You get a chance to type them up yet?"

With a whispered curse, Josh aborts his escape attempt and heads back to the bullpen. The police building isn't that big, so he's back at his desk in twenty steps. Roby smirks at him from the desk facing Josh's, tugging on his handlebar mustache and waggling his eyebrows. Josh ignores him.

"No, sir." Josh adjusts his belt and takes a seat, pulling out his clipboard to pop it open. "I have them right here."

McGucken makes a pleased noise, and starts to turn back to his office, but Roby speaks up first.

"Aw, cut the kid some slack, Ed."

Josh frowns over at the senior patrolman. He doesn't need anyone, let alone Roby, butting into his business and Roby knows it, which means Josh is about to take some bullshit.

And McGucken knows it, too, because the older man settles in against an empty desk with an amused look. "Am I working him too hard, you think?"

"Yeah, you're a real slave-driver," Roby says with a straight face, South Boston accent coming through. "Anybody can see he's been on edge the last couple weeks."

Suddenly, Josh needs to shuffle through his notes. He can feel his face burning and tugs at the high collar of his uniform undershirt.

"He has been twitchy all day..." McGucken muses, getting in on it. "Maybe it's the new dog? Garrison still pissed about the back deck?"

"Nah," Roby answers for Josh. "When we fixed the railing last weekend, Garrison said Josh didn't have to sleep on the couch no more. So it must be something else..."

McGucken nods sagely. "And of course, it's got nothing to do with that fancy little package from Nancy's Jewelers delivered here the other week..."

They both look at Josh expectantly. He gives them a level stare and asks, deadpan, "I can come back later, when you’re finished gossiping about me?"

McGucken and Roby crack up. Josh boots his computer and straightens his notes pages again.

"Aw, kid, we're just messing with you," McGucken says with a snicker. "Go on, get out of here. Those can wait until tomorrow."

"Yeah," Roby chimes in. "Seeing as how it's Valentine's Day and all, leave the beat to thems without plans. Just let us know what he says, yeah?"

His mama didn't raise no fool, so Josh stands up and mumbles, "Will do. See ya tomorrow."

He high-tails it out of there, trailed by good-natured laughter and offers to take him out to the pub when he's back in.

February in Vermont is frigid and biting, so he tucks his chin into his uniform jacket and beats feet to his truck. Couple more years on the force and he'll have his own SUV cruiser to take home during his four-day work weeks.

Shit, even after two years, it's still weird being open about his relationship with Garrison to his coworkers. Him and Garrison, they kept things on the down low when they were in the Marines, but his buddies weren't surprised when Josh mustered out instead of re-upping.

A lack of surprise didn’t exactly translate to his military buddies ribbing him about Garrison like the guys on the force rib him, lumping him in with the officers who have girlfriends and wives. Roby and Garrison even have some weird Boston bond, that apparently allows both to insult the other at will without it ending in a fist fight. Josh keeps waiting for the other shoe to drop.

So it's a bit of an adjustment. Since they moved to town, the only rumbles Josh has had to deal with haven't been about being gay, but rather about being in an interracial relationship. He's glad Johnson prefers to work night shifts.

But, Josh reflects as he breathes in clean mountain air and the smell of evergreens, he wants to get used to it. For the first time in a long while, he feels like his life is clicking into place, almost perfect.

He has Garrison, they bought a house together last year, they just got a dog, and his career is holding steady. He's not like Garrison -- he's not constantly striving to get farther ahead, climb higher. With his specialized military background, Josh could have had any number of high-paying jobs lined up. But that high pay would have come with high risk, and he likes to think that he knows himself a little bit better these days. He's found a job that he likes and he'll be the best at it that he can be. He has to admit that he's content with his life.

The little box edge poking his thigh reminds him that there's just one more thing he wants to do to complete the picture.

Pulling his truck out of the station parking lot, he waves at Jonesy next door, the fireman sneaking his daily smoke. He knows people now, he and Garrison have made friends in town and in the city. Josh likes being a small town cop, they're close enough to the city that Garrison's commute isn't horrid, and the place gets enough seasonal traffic with the ski resorts that Garrison -- city boy at heart -- doesn't feel stranded. There’s enough diversity that guys like Johnson stand out because they’re outliers, not the norm, and everyone knows it.

Stokely's Floral Arrangements is crowded when he pulls up, but Josh is on a mission.

Pamela Mooney is the person right ahead of him in line and he debates waiting in his truck. Small towns also, apparently, come with the requisite nosy neighbors. He's met trained interrogators that got nothing on Mrs. Mooney. She could beat a man into submission with just her big hair, big purse, and big personality.

"Officer Dabbs," she twitters. Too late to escape. "Fancy meeting you here! Picking up flowers for your special someone?"

"Yes, ma'am," Josh responds dutifully.

Garrison would hurt himself laughing to hear her refer to him as Josh's "special someone." Normally Garrison gets along with ninety-nine percent of the people he meets. Mrs. Mooney's in that other one percent.

"Well, well," she twitters again. She's what his mama used to refer to as a "character." He just goes with his best defense as they move ahead in line.

"What brings you in here today, ma'am?" He asks with his sweetest smile. "Lady such as yourself, I'd expect has a dozen bouquets coming her way."

"Oh, you," she squeals.

Bob Stokely rolls his eyes from behind the cash register. Josh kinda agrees. If she were lonely, it would be one thing. But she's sent seven kids out into the world and she rules that entire family with an iron fist.

"I'm getting flowers for my mother, dear," she's explaining as she approaches the counter. "Every year, I hand-deliver an arrangement to the Home just for her. She may be senile, but she always knows they're from me. I had pink posies delivered earlier this week for the lobbies, too. Bob, did you remember the name cards? The nurses couldn't find the name cards--"

Twenty minutes later, Mrs. Mooney totters out with an elaborate display taller than her hair. Josh gives Bob a sympathetic smile. With his Jerry Garcia beard and preference for flannel, Bob's about as far from the gay florist stereotype as he can get, but sometimes he likes to play up the drama.

"Thinks she's Queen of freaking England," Bob mutters under his breath, before returning Josh's smile. "You, on the other hand, are a doll." He glances down at Josh's phone order. "An elegant arrangement with red roses and a splash of ferns. Are you sure you don't want me to spice it up a little more? Garrison seems like he'd go for something with more flair... Birds of Paradise maybe?"

Josh laughs. "Nah. Just keep it simple and easy -- then he'll believe it's from me."

"The usual, then," Bob chuckles and goes to retrieve the bouquet from the fridge. He comes back with an armful of roses in a black ceramic vase. Josh shells out a pretty penny and makes his goodbyes. He's already a half hour behind schedule.

See, here's the thing -- Garrison says he's not overly romantic or anything like that, but heaven help him if Josh forgets their anniversary or a birthday or a holiday. They've been together almost three years and Josh has a system now, down to reminders on his cell phone and his work and home computer calendars, plus a list of gift ideas he routinely updates from conversations with Garrison.

But it's hard shopping for someone who grew up in an affluent Boston family and attended Northwestern Law before joining the Marines. Garrison's pretty down to earth when compared to his brother and sister, but he still has expensive tastes, and Josh can't tell the difference between Gucci and Prada.

So he goes for thoughtful gifts instead, which means that he taps into the two women who know his guy best.

"Hey, Mom," he says into his phone as he heads home. "I thought you had an appointment at the day spa?"

"And I thought you had a home-made dinner to cook!" Grace Williams exclaims with a laugh. "Don't tell me you've run into problems already?"

"You mistake salt for sugar one time and no one lets you live it down!" He mock-groans.

"It was certainly the most interesting dessert I've ever had..."

"Well, hopefully today will go a lot smoother. Is Ms. Anne Marie in? I forgot to put the brisket in the slow cooker this morning, so I did it on my lunch break..."

"Oh, honey. Let me go get her."

He can hear the click of Grace's high-heels on the townhouse's hardwood floors, then tiles. Ms. Anne Marie, the Williams' cook-housekeeper-former nanny-household drill sergeant, comes on the line a few seconds later.

"How long has it been cooking now?" she asks, straight and to the point.

He swallows and glances at the dash clock. "About five hours? I left before him this morning, so it went in at lunch..."

"That'll have to do. But remember, you gotta glaze it with the mustard sauce after it comes out of the broth, then put it in the oven for about five minutes more to dry out. Otherwise it'll be a mess when you put it back with the cabbage and broth."

"Yes, ma'am."

"Now, what did you get for dessert?"

"I special ordered an ice cream cake from Cabot's: chocolate, non-dairy ice cream, with cookie crunch." He'd driven down to Boston on his last day off to pick it up and hid it in the garage freezer. "I even remembered to put it in the fridge to thaw."

"Pssh. You spoil that boy," she says sternly. "I suppose you pass muster."

"Thank you, ma'am."

"Hn. I have my own dinner to make."

Grace gets back on the line and teases, "So you have the official stamp of approval?"

Josh talks to her for the rest of the quick drive home. Their house is set off the road a-ways, surrounded by trees, and when he pulls up the long driveway, he's greeted by Muttlee barking excitedly outside the garage.

Considering that Josh left him inside the garage earlier, this does not bode well.

"Mom, I gotta go," he says with a sigh. "The dog's out again."

She tuts sympathetically, "Honey, that's not a dog. That's a goat."

He climbs out of the truck, eyeing the chewed-up aluminum dog door that used to be set in the garage door. "I'm beginning to think that, too."

"Well, good luck, sweetie. I expect to hear some good news tomorrow!"

"Thanks, Mom."

Muttlee's dancing around excitedly, making his high-pitched puppy yips. Josh shakes his head and goes back to the truck for the flowers. The little beast wouldn't understand if Josh started yelling now. He'll have to patch that door up somehow before Garrison sees it.

The house smells like beef when Josh opens the front door. Miz Anne Marie's corned beef and cabbage is Garrison's favorite dish, so Josh thought he'd give it a try. "Try" being the operative word.

Setting the flowers on the counter, he checks on the slow cooker before going to change out of his uniform. Muttlee's close on his heels every step, wanting attention, butting his legs and nipping at his fingers. Josh gives in only after his uniform's hanging in the closet and he's in a T-shirt and jeans. Then he gets an armful of slobbery German Shepherd.

Returning to the kitchen, he removes the beef from the slow cooker and preps it with the mustard glaze before sliding it in the oven. The vegetables get chunked and tossed in a pot to boil.

"Back on schedule," he tells Muttlee smugly, then heads to the garage.

Some plywood and deck screws are his best repair options at the moment, so the garage door isn't perfect, but they won't find any baby bears or woodchucks in there come tomorrow. It's getting to be that time of year, and wouldn't Garrison just string him up from the gables...

He hears his cell phone ringing in the house, the ringtone he set for Garrison, and sprints for the door, Muttlee flying behind him.

He wrestles the phone out of his uniform jacket, and answers breathlessly, "Hey!"

"Well, hello there," Garrison answers curiously. "What have you been getting up to?"

"Nothing dirty," Josh smirks. "Promise."

"Damn, just dash a man's fantasies..."

If Garrison's taking the time to be flirty, that means he's back in his office and almost ready to leave.

"So, how many bad guys did you put away today?" Josh asks, wandering over to the stove to poke around in the vegetable pot.

"Not enough," Garrison grumbles, but not in a defeated way, so he'll be all right. "How about you? Was justice served?"

"Picked up the Lawrence kid on a DUI." He meanders to the fridge and grabs a beer, starts pacing between the kitchen and the hallway. "I actually felt kinda bad for him when his mama showed up at the station. Roby nearly pissed himself laughing so hard."

"Quiet, Sunday school teacher Carla Lawrence?"

"Well, she certainly put the fear of God in that boy..."

There's a crash behind him. Breaking glass. Or ceramic.

Josh turns back into the kitchen and stops dead in his tracks. Garrison's talking in his ear, but all Josh can see is the mangled remains of the roses strewn across the tiled floor. A broken stem hangs from Muttlee's grinning little face.

"No," Josh hisses furiously, covering the receiver with one hand and waving Muttlee off with the other. "Bad dog!"

"What did he do now?" Garrison sighs on the other end, edge creeping into his voice, and Josh freezes.

Nothing compares to Garrison in a full on bitchfit, and more frequently than not that ire has been directed at Muttlee the Destructo-Dog.

"Nothing." It's a knee-jerk response. Wait, Garrison will never believe that. Josh prevaricates. "Well. A little mess. Nothing I can't clean up. We're good."

"A little mess," Garrison drawls. "Your dog seems to make a lot of little messes."

Aw, shit. When Garrison starts with the "your dog," both Josh and the pooch are in trouble. Last time, Josh ended up on the couch.

"Like this morning, for instance," Garrison continues, voice smooth as silk, "Imagine my surprise when I went to get dressed, only to discover that your dog had eaten my five hundred dollar Gucci loafers."

Well, at least Josh knows what to get Garrison for his birthday...

"He's going through his rebellious teenage years?" Josh answers with no hope.

There's some clicking in the background; Garrison's at his computer. "Your swing shifts end in two weeks, correct?"

Josh stifles a groan, knowing where this is going. So much for those free evenings. "Yeah. I go back to day shift full-time."

"I'm sending Sky an e-mail right now, signing us up for the Monday and Thursday obedience classes."

"Yes, dear."

"Mmmhmm." Garrison types a bit longer. "All right. I have a few things to wrap up here, but I should leave in a couple minutes."


"Love you."

"You, too."

Garrison snorts, thawing. "I still say that's not a proper response."

"I still say I mean it just as much." Josh grins.

"And I still say you do it just because it irks me." Garrison laughs, deep and throaty. "Later, babe."

"Bye." Josh hangs up and turns to Muttlee. "Dude! What the hell? You're supposed to be on my side!"

He gets the broom and dustpan.

Five minutes and a pile of puppy vomit later, he's on the internet frantically searching to see if roses are poisonous to dogs and thinking that he should have researched this already. Lord knows Mom is right, they brought home a goat and not a dog. Luckily, none of the sites coming up are screaming about POISON or TOXIC or WORST PUPPY PARENT EVER.

The smell of something burning reminds him of the brisket in the oven. Did he remember to set a timer? Before he makes it down the hallway, the smoke alarm starts going off. He kills that before he cranks off the oven, opening the oven door to a billow of smoke and the smell of charred meat.

"Well, shit."

Dinner's done, but as in dead and blackened. He sets the smoking broiler dish on top of the stove and starts opening windows. In his rush to ventilate, he forgets and opens the back door wide. A streak of black and brown almost takes his knees out.

"Damn it, Muttlee!"

The little escape artist heads straight for the deck railing, jumping up and over in one smooth move that would've made a great Mighty Dog commercial. Unfortunately, Josh has to wrestle with the gate to get down the short stairs and Muttlee's already tromping through the underbrush in the trees, yipping excitedly.

"Come here, you hairy beast," Josh commands in his best authoritarian voice. Muttlee pauses for a second, then trots up to about ten feet away before barking at Josh and skittering away again. "Oh, no. Dude, we are not playing right now! Back inside!"

Muttlee comes close again, only to run off when Josh takes a step at him. Lather, rinse, repeat. A half hour later, Josh is breathless and frozen from chasing the damn dog around in just his t-shirt, so he just plops on the grass and lays back, arms splayed. The clouds are really pretty...

A wet puppy nose dive bombs his neck. Josh shrieks and gets an arm around Muttlee's shoulders with a laugh, rolls the little bugger, who's squirming and slobbering all over him. They rough-house for a minute, Josh mock growling and Muttlee getting all worked up.

Muttlee's still running circles around him when Josh gets back in the freezing kitchen. With a sigh, he closes the windows and door, then dumps the charred pan in the sink and runs the hot water full blast. Good thing they have a garbage disposal – maybe. The charred brick might break it.

So him and the dog are covered in twigs, dead leaves, and dirt. Garrison will be home in -- he checks -- about twenty minutes, and there is no dinner. Garrison is a foodie who rarely has enough time to cook these days, but when he does, it’s a production of fancy sauces and tools Josh can’t pronounce. Josh is only willing to cook comfort food for him, so there’s no way he’s putting together another meal up to Garrison’s standards with the time he has left. That means outsourcing to a trusted gourmet restaurant.

A quick call to the Ski Chalet, which can squeeze them in the reservation book for nineteen hundred, solves the food problem. That gives him about an hour and half to get presentable and convince Garrison that he'd meant to take him out to a restaurant all along.

He almost trips over Muttlee again.

"Okay, buddy. A quick run and maybe then you'll be too wiped to go Destructo-Dog on me again."

He changes into his PT clothes, pulling a pair of track pants over his shorts. A sweatshirt and knit cap are his other nods to the weather. At the sight of his leash, Muttlee goes nuts and Josh gives up trying to make him sit before clipping it onto his collar.

They run about half their normal route, down to the end of their road and back. Garrison's Mercedes SUV passes them on the long driveway, Garrison giving him a wave. By the time the Mercedes is parked, Josh and Muttlee are waiting near the walkway to the porch.

"Your morning jog not enough?" Garrison asks as he gets out.

"Hn," Josh answers distractedly. "Wearing out the dog."

Garrison wears three piece suits to the office with imported silk shirts from Italian places Josh can't pronounce. Josh doesn't complain at all when it gives him a tailored view of Garrison's firm ass and massively muscled thighs as he steps down from the SUV. Garrison wears boxer briefs, and when he's interested, it shows. Like right now, with the thick bulge revealed beneath the suit jacket at every step Garrison takes toward him.

He blinks and looks up at Garrison's face. "Hm?"

"I said you should have waited for me," Garrison repeats with a smile and a raised eyebrow, knowing full well what's going on in Josh's brain. "I would have joined you."

"I still have to shower," Josh says with a wicked grin. "You can join me there."

"Hmm." Garrison leans in for a kiss, broad hand swiping the hat off Josh's head and ruffling his short brown hair. "Happy Valentine's Day, indeed. Lead on, then."

Josh doesn't need to be told twice. He ushers Muttlee into the house, setting the puppy loose, and strips off his sweatshirt on his way down the hall to the bedroom. Luckily, the burnt smell is gone and the temperature's almost back to normal in the house.

Garrison has his routine -- briefcase dropped in his neatly organized office, bedroom door closed with the dog on the other side, jacket shrugged off and hung in the closet, shoes on the rack, wallet and keys on top of the dresser. Josh is down to his shorts by the time Garrison's unbuttoning his shirt.

"I figured we could go out for dinner," Josh says as he stuffs his clothes in the closet hamper. He feels more than hears Garrison come up behind him.

"Mmmhmm. Later. You know what those PT shorts do to me," Garrison rumbles against Josh's neck, lips tracing the line of ear down to his collar bone. Garrison keeps his head shaved, his chin rough with stubble at this time of day, and Josh shudders, cock filling in his loose shorts.

"I-I might have some idea," he stutters, breathless.

When Garrison presses against his back, Josh braces himself with both hands on the wall next to the closet. He can feel Garrison's smile on his skin, can feel as Garrison inhales his scent and it makes Josh's hair stand on end. Garrison's in just his boxer briefs now, dick stiff against Josh's back, and his hands are at Josh's hips, pulling him back against Garrison's crotch.

Josh isn't a small guy, not by far, but Garrison -- he's built like a running back, all sleek lines and firm muscles, tall and intimidating if you don't know him. He has a couple inches on Josh and that's enough to give him an edge when he wants it.

Josh doesn't mind at all.

Garrison mouths at the back of his neck, thick lips trailing down to Josh's shoulders. His hands slide from Josh's hips down his shorts, then back up underneath the worn material. His fingers burn. Josh grinds his hips back, dick bobbing, and tries to encourage Garrison to put his hands where Josh really wants them.

Garrison just chuckles, deep and knowing. When he pulls his hands away, Josh makes a frustrated noise and growls, "Oh, you suck."

Garrison snorts, kneading Josh's ass with both hands. "Not tonight. I was thinking of something more..."

That's an idea Josh can definitely get behind. Or in front of... "Okay, so you don't completely suck."

He grins at Garrison's booming laughter. Muttlee starts barking on the other side of the bedroom door, and they both snicker.

"Bed," Garrison says, tugging Josh around and toward their king size bed.

"Oh, wow, we're doing it in the bed for once? What a treat," Josh drawls, cock throbbing as he stops to drop his shorts.

"Are you implying that I'm impatient?" Garrison asks archly, stepping out of his own boxers. His dark cock is beautiful, thick and long in a nest of black curls, and Josh licks his lips, so tempted to just drop to his knees.

Instead, he smirks and distracts himself with, "I'm pretty sure we can repair your desk with enough wood glue."

Garrison curls a hand around his neck, pulls him closer. Josh goes easily, needing to touch and rub up against all that smooth, naked skin.

"This from the man who fucked me up against his truck in the garage last weekend." The words are breathed against his lips before Garrison claims them again, plundering Josh's mouth.

Josh gives up all pretense of talking, moaning into Garrison's mouth when their cocks rub together, not enough pressure, not enough contact. He protests when Garrison leans back.

"On the bed. Now," Garrison rasps.

Josh crawls up on the bed, reaching across to the nightstand, fumbling the drawer open for lube. The bed dips as Garrison kneels behind him, hands wrapping around Josh's hips to pull him into position.

"No, the flavored one," Garrison rumbles and Josh reaches back in the nightstand, heart speeding up in anticipation. If Garrison wants the flavored lube, that means he plans on taking his time...

Tossing the lube to the side, Josh puts more weight forward on his elbows, offers himself up for anything Garrison wants, just waiting to be pounded into and filled and knowing that he won't get satisfaction until Garrison's had fun torturing him.

Garrison does take his time, broad hands roving over Josh's back, his ass, pressing into the skin of his thighs, spreading them out farther, making Josh stretch, expose more of himself. Garrison's silky hard dick brushes along the crease of Josh's ass, making them both shiver.

"Fuck," Josh grits out.

Garrison's response is an evil chuckle and the drag of his short nails down Josh's spine. Josh groans and squeezes his eyes shut hard, willing himself not to come, but damn, Garrison's just winding him tighter, teasing, hitting all his sensitive spots.

The snap of the lube's plastic cap is loud over their shuddering breaths. Josh gasps when the drizzle of cold lube hits his ass. He squirms, but Garrison's fingers are there, spreading the lube, warming it against Josh's skin. A blunt finger strokes down, right over Josh's hole, rubbing without penetrating. Garrison's other hand trails up Josh's thigh to his balls and grips them with just enough pressure that Josh's dick twitches involuntarily. Josh buries his face in his arms and moans.

"You're killing me," he says hoarsely, trying to swallow.

"Can't have that," Garrison murmurs. Josh wants to protest when the hand leaves his balls and Garrison shifts backward on the bed, but then both of Garrison's palms are on his ass cheeks, spreading them farther apart until it burns, a good burn that focuses all of Josh's attention on that one part of his body.

He's expecting Garrison's touch, but he still jumps when a tongue swipes over his hole, warm firm pressure pushing against the pucker of skin until the ring of muscle is breached. Josh moans loudly, embarrassingly so, and tries not to hump the bed. Garrison pulls back just to stab his tongue in again and again, and Josh is nearly sobbing, it feels so good, but it's not enough.

Finally, Garrison sits back, shifting on the bed. Josh rests his head on his forearms and pants, muscles twitching pleasantly. There's the sound of the lube cap again, but no cold shock this time, just the wet sound of Garrison slicking his cock up. Josh makes a noise of protest when Garrison just rubs the head of his dick over Josh's hole, giving little thrusts forward, just enough to tease, enough to make Josh want to push back, to get that hard cock to slip inside.

"Hold still," Garrison whispers and Josh stills, relaxing as Garrison grips his hip with one hand and pushes the tip of his cock inside so fucking slowly with the other. His tongue didn’t stretch Josh nearly enough and the burn is so delicious Josh wants to writhe on the bed.

Garrison keeps pushing steadily in, both hands on Josh's hips now, putting pressure on him, pulling Josh back onto his dick. This is what Josh has been aching for from the moment Garrison stepped out of his car -- to feel filled and claimed so completely.

When Garrison's in all the way, balls pushing up against Josh's ass, they both freeze, just breathing. Then Garrison's hips twitch forward like he can't hold himself still any more, and Josh digs his fingers into the bed, pushes back with his elbows and knees, trying to get Garrison in deeper. Garrison moans loudly and pulls back until he's almost out.

"You want it hard?" Garrison pants. Josh makes an incoherent noise of agreement that turns into a harsh groan as Garrison hammers his hips forward again. It's just as rough as Josh likes it, a shock of pain that quickly fades when he adjusts his stance just so, and then Garrison's pounding into him hard enough to make the bed frame creak.

Josh strains back with each thrust, tries to get the most out of each one, his own dick slapping against his thighs. They're both getting sweaty now, Garrison losing his hold on Josh hips, hands slamming down to the mattress on either side of Josh and taking Josh's knees out from under him. It changes the angle so that every push of Garrison's cock sends glorious sparks of pleasure up Josh's back and down his legs.

He's so close to the edge, so close, and Garrison's weight is on his back, covering him, lips and teeth at his shoulder, grinding Josh's cock against the sheets. Garrison pistons into him with short grunts now, bearing him down into the mattress. Josh surges up with his hips, thigh muscles straining, nearly lifting Garrison off the bed, and that's enough to make Garrison curl up around him, hot come flooding Josh with each spasm.

Before Garrison even softens, he works his hand under Josh, squeezes his cock hard once, twice, and that's all it takes for Josh to clench and spurt his release.

Garrison slumps over Josh's back, dick still buried in him, as they pant. After a moment, Josh shifts, suddenly aware that he's in the wet spot, and nudges up with the shoulder that Garrison's face is resting on. Garrison makes an unhappy noise, but pushes up, pulling out and leaving Josh a sodden, sated mess.

"Shower time," Garrison says smugly. Sex always energizes him, whereas Josh always conks out.

Josh rolls away from the wet spot and mumbles sleepily into the bedspread, "Nap time."

"C'mon, you'll thank me later."


The shower starts running, Garrison singing to himself, and Josh dozes for a moment longer. He's getting cold and sticky, though, so he gets up with a sigh and stumbles to the bathroom.

Garrison steps out as Josh steps in. "Man, I'm starving. I know you mentioned going out, but how about I whip us up something?"

Josh completely forgot about dinner. He tries to drown himself in the shower. It doesn't work.

"Sure," he finally responds. Garrison's already out of the bedroom, if Muttlee's little claws clicking on the bathroom tile are a sign. A black puppy nose snorts around the shower curtain. "Don't even think about it, bub."

Josh hurries out of the bathroom, remembering that the remains of his failed dinner attempt are still all over the kitchen. Garrison's stripped the bed and laid out Josh's favorite pair of USMC sweats. After his day, Josh is all for a comfortable night in, but he had plans, damn it.

He pauses in the hallway, Muttlee skittering down ahead of him, and debates with himself. The bang of pots and Garrison's low singing means that his dinner plans are definitely off the table. No flowers survived Destructo-Dog.

Time to adapt and improvise.

While Garrison putters around in the kitchen, Josh hits his jacket pocket in the foyer and comes to linger in the kitchen doorway, holding the small box against his thigh. The cabbage pot is in the sink and Garrison has an open egg carton next to the stove.

"I hope omelets are all right?" he asks without turning around. He has his own sweats slung low on his hips, no sweatshirt. "We don't have a lot else. Was that corned beef and cabbage?"

"Um, yeah. Kinda. There's ice cream cake from Cabot's in the fridge."

Garrison glances over his shoulder at him with a big smile. "Woo, boy. If I hadn't just done lascivious and wicked things to you, you'd be in danger..."

Josh laughs, relaxing a little. He fingers the box, tapping it against his thigh.

"So, here's the thing..." He starts, then trails off, unsure how to continue.

"Yeah, babe?" Garrison looks to him with a raised eyebrow.

While Josh fumbles for the right words, Garrison turns and leans against the counter, giving Josh his full attention. Josh forces himself to start talking.

"So I had this whole thing set-up for tonight -- flowers, but the dog ate them. Candle-lit dinner at home, but it kind of got... well, you saw. Then reservations at the Ski Chalet, but we've missed those. Not that I mind being distracted at all," he adds quickly so there's no misunderstanding that he wants a repeat, like, a lot. "But it seems kinda like I'm destined to be de-railed at this point, so I'm just gonna make my own moment."

"Babe," Garrison says gently with a wry smile. "Josh. It's just a day. I know I can make a big deal about dates, but you don't have to worry about making it perfect--"

"I'll settle for not-a-disaster at this point." Josh sighs.

"I think it's already been perfect." Garrison gives him a look that makes Josh blush. "Besides, I get spoiled three hundred and sixty-four more days a year. I'm just glad we're both here with a whole night to ourselves."

"But, see, that's it." Josh swallows, cheeks still hot, and comes across the kitchen to stand in front of Garrison. If his knees weren't already aching from earlier, he'd get down on one, too. Instead, he holds the box up in the short distance between them, popping it open and watching for the moment Garrison's eyes widen with surprise. He's not disappointed.

"I want to spoil you, every single day. I want to wake up next to you for the rest of my life, and take you out and show you off, and do everything in my power to make you happy. Because I love you, so much, and you've ruined me for anybody else anyway, so you're stuck with me. I'd just like to make that official. Please."

Garrison gives a short laugh, the one he does when he's overwhelmed, and stares down at the box. After a moment, Josh nudges him with a knee.

"So whaddya say? Wanna make an honest man of me?"

Garrison starts to smile, really wide, bigger than Josh has seen him smile before. He reaches up, cups Josh's hands around the ring box, and looks directly at Josh, so intense Josh can't breathe.

"Of course," Garrison says softly. "Of course I will."

"Good." Josh is dizzy with relief, laughing a bit himself. "Great."

"Oh, babe," Garrison grins, and pulls him in for a deep kiss, one that makes Josh's dick try to perk up again.

"Is this what you've been so worked up about the last couple weeks?" Garrison asks once Josh is pliant and melted in his arms. "I was worried you were having problems at work."

Josh tries to shrug, resting his forehead against Garrison's nose. He gets a kiss on the bridge of his for his worries.

"And here I just bought you a new iPod," Garrison murmurs with a smile, taking the box from Josh to look closer at the rings. They're platinum bands with an inlaid channel of braided metal. Nancy and Josh had spent almost an hour trying to find rings that were classy but unique.

"These are gorgeous," Garrison says solemnly, giving him another kiss. "Thank you."

"Don't thank me yet," Josh smirks. "Your parents expect a big ceremony."

"Just how many people knew about this?" Garrison demands. Josh laughs and starts from the beginning.

Seems his Valentine's Day plans weren't ruined after all.


Since 2006, J. Rocci has published LGBT romance stories, ranging from contemporary to steampunk to fantasy. Rocci currently lives near Washington D.C. with the love of her life and their furry children, and loves giving her characters happy endings. You can find Rocci on the web at:






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