Roads: Book One
Don’t look back. Don’t you ever look back…
Shy tattoo artist Ash has a troubled past. Years of neglect, drug abuse, and life on the streets have taken their toll, and sometimes it seems the deep, unspoken bond with his lover is the only balm for wounds he doesn’t quite understand.
Chicago paramedic Pete is warmth, love, and strength—things Ash never knew he could have, and never even knew he wanted until Pete showed him. But fate is a cruel, cruel mistress, and when nightmares collide with the present, their tentatively built world comes crashing down.
Traumatic events in Pete’s work life distance him from home, and he doesn’t realize until it’s too late that Ash has slipped away. Betrayal, secrets, and lies unfold, and when a devastating coincidence takes hold, Pete must fight with all he has to save the love of his life.
NIGHT shifts sucked. I turned my back on the station house and stepped out into the bitter night. Yeah. Winter night shifts sucked even more. Chicago was cold, really cold, but even as my breath misted in the freezing air, I couldn’t raise the energy to care. I could take the subway, but I’d made that mistake before and slept past my stop, not waking up until the train pulled into Lakeview. Fuck that shit. I needed my bed.
Instead, I trudged across town, dead on my feet and my mind on autopilot. In some ways, it felt almost surreal to be finally heading home; the long night had seemed unending. After five years as a city paramedic I was used to it, but it didn’t get any easier.
With my mind a blank haze of exhaustion, the walk seemed to pass quickly. I pushed open the exterior door to the dilapidated building I called home with a wry grin. I could almost hear my bed calling to me. Maybe zoning out wasn’t so bad after all.
I wandered dazedly along the corridor until I reached the door to my apartment. Typically, my key got stuck in the lock. I muttered a curse as I tried to manipulate it quietly, but it didn’t work, and the door creaked open with an obnoxious groan. I winced, pausing, but heard no response to my fumbling. Good. Damn thing needed oiling, but it was just one of those chores that never got done.
A hot shower soothed my aching body, but I only lingered long enough to wash the day away. I dried quickly, threw on some sweats, turned out the light, and padded across the hallway. The scraps of paper pinned to every wall caught my eye. Sketches. Designs. Stencils. There was no order to them—no rhyme or reason. Just a load of drafted tattoos stuck up all over my place. The flurry of creativity made me smile, as it always did. The fucker had a studio right here in the apartment, but some shit never changed.
I eased the bedroom door shut. The room was dark and still, but I quickly found the outlined shape of the renegade artist in my bed.
I slid under the covers and scooted across to look at him. He was stretched out on his back with his arm flung over his head, his surfer-blond hair a riot against the light-gray pillow. His face was peaceful, which eased my guilt; he didn’t like sleeping alone. I cast my gaze around the room as the tension of the night began to seep out of me, spotting the stack of his books on the nightstand. I shook my head, letting the soft rush of love and awe sweep over me. The boy never ceased to amaze me. He’d worked all day and drawn all night, and he still took books to bed. Unbidden, I reached out to touch his chest, but I caught my hand before I could feel the warmth of his bare skin. If I touched him, I’d never stop. He was sexy as hell when he was asleep and at ease.
A low chuckle startled me. “Are you going to stare all night? Some of us are trying to sleep.”
I dove for him, smirking, and attempted to push him off the side of the bed. We wrestled for a minute, but he was too quick for me, his instincts too sharp. He had me pinned in seconds. I rolled onto my side to face him, grinning as he ran his shrewd gaze over me, taking in my heavy, drooping eyes. He reached out and touched my cheek; a cheek I knew was dark with two days of Italian stubble. “Long night?”
“Factory fire,” I said around a jaw-popping yawn. “Three busloads of burned-up dudes covered in soot. It took a while to clean up.”
He shuddered and made a face. Burns gave him the creeps. “Tired?”
I nodded and yawned again, but despite the soothing lull of his warm body, I kept my eyes open. I’d missed him over the past few days. He worked a lot, and I worked even more. Sometimes, we could go a week without seeing each other awake. Inevitably, my mind fell into the gutter. However long it had been, there were better things we could do than talk about work. He caught the direction of my thoughts, as he always did, and raised a challenging eyebrow. Unable to resist, I leaned in to kiss him, softly at first, but then harder as the familiar spark between us ignited.
We slammed together. He grasped the back of my neck and held me in place, his lips busy on my neck. I arched into him and ran my fingers down the length of his spine, instinctively tracing the smattered patches of uneven, raised skin. It was my habit to catalogue every mysterious scar that littered his back; these days I did it without inventory and didn’t pay much attention to the way they made me feel. But he knew—he always knew. His ragged puffs of air were hot on my clenched jaw as he slowly kissed the tension away.
Sweatpants and boxers were gone in an instant, littering the bedroom floor. Ash reached for my dick, but I rolled away and pulled him up to straddle my chest. I took him in my mouth and his whispered curse pierced the air. It had been too long, far too long since I’d given him the attention he deserved. Giving head was never my thing before I met him, but he changed everything about me. He was like an addiction, an all-consuming habit of the best kind. I wanted him in every way possible, whenever and wherever I could have him.
I set to work driving him crazy, and it didn’t take long. He fell back on his hands and groaned out a long curse as I grazed the length of his dick with my teeth. I gripped his strong thighs, working him just a little bit faster, but as his legs began to shake, he suddenly pulled away. His stormy eyes held me in place. “You’re so hot when you do that.”
Breathless, I returned his stare. It was dark and late, but I wasn’t done with him yet. Flushed and licking his lips, he was the hottest thing I’d ever seen. He tilted his head, attuned to my mood, as always. “Like that, is it?”
Before I could answer, he swooped down and claimed my mouth, catching me off guard. I fell back on the bed, moaning, and there wasn’t an inch between any part of our intertwined bodies. He grinned against my lips, amused that he’d turned the tables so easily, and made short work of dishing out his own devilish brand of revenge. His deceptively light touch was demanding—a reminder that he owned me. I couldn’t take it for long; I needed more. But before I could blink, he flipped us and pressed his back into the mattress.
“I want to do it like this.”
I rocked our bodies together and circled my hips, feeling him hard against me. “Just like this?”
He shook his head, his eyes suddenly nervous. “This way.”
I froze, and the air around us abruptly shifted. He didn’t often let me fuck him. In fact, it was so rare, for a moment I didn’t think I could do it.
Ash held my face in his hands, sensing my hesitation, and kissed me slow and deep. His hands were strong, and his lips steady and sure. He slipped his tongue into my mouth and worked his magic until my nerves faded away to a gentle whisper.
Cautiously, I reached over his head to the space between the mattress and the headboard for our hidden stash of condoms and lube. Then I slipped a wet finger into him, preparing him for me. I was gentle, but he bit down on his lip with his eyes screwed shut. I felt a rush of frustration. I wanted him to look at me, but I knew he wouldn’t. Steeling himself for what came next was too consuming. In an effort to soothe him, I reached up and placed my palm over his racing heart. “Breathe, Ash.”
It took some time, but eventually he pulled my body up to signal he was ready to move on. I withdrew from my fingers carefully from his body. He jumped, skittish already. I leaned down and kissed him. It was a long, deep, stirring kiss that stoked the heat between us and threatened to wipe my mind of anything but the feel of him beneath me, but I fought for control. I was aching, desperate to be inside him, but I had to be careful. One wrong move and he’d be gone from the bed like a shot.
He rolled a condom onto me, and a low moan built in my throat. I gripped the headboard and my head fell back. Just his lightest touch sent shivers through my overstimulated body. He pulled me toward him again, and the very tip of my cock touched him. I edged forward and watched him carefully. Waiting. Waiting for what I knew was coming—the resistance, the flash of panic, the ingrained fear of having someone, anyone, touch him like that.
Seconds later, it was his turn to freeze. His eyes darkened, and he went rigid in my arms. With sadly practiced motions, I took my hands from the headboard, ready to move in either direction. His torso twitched as he fought with himself. He wanted to lash out, to shove me away and run from the room and out into the night.
He gasped as he finally controlled his reaction. I put a tentative hand on his thigh, dismayed to find it shaking. “It’s okay. Just breathe. It’s okay.”
Slowly, he wound his arms around my neck, pulled me down, and hid his face in my chest. I gave him a moment, matching his deep breaths, but then I pulled back, asking him a silent question. In answer, he held my gaze and flexed his hips just a fraction. “Don’t stop.”
I stared at him. Despite his distress, he was still hard between us, and, more importantly, still in the bed. I reached out and cupped his face with my hand. “You’ve just got to say the word, okay?”
He nodded. Just once. But it was enough.
I moved over him again, holding his leg loosely against my chest, and brought my cock back to his body. I eased into him slowly, but despite the painstaking pace, his body still instinctively rejected the intrusion. The urge to give up was strong as I waited for his inevitable discomfort to ease. For me, this was always the hardest part. Fucking him was amazing, a privilege I rarely got to experience, but I didn’t get off on hurting him. Though it was a necessary evil on our way to something incredible, everything about it felt wrong.
His eyes fluttered open. He didn’t speak, but I heard him all the same. Now.
I rocked my hips in a slow circle. Beneath me, he pulled on my hips and sank his teeth into my shoulder. Another silent cue went unsaid. More.
Searing heat pulsed through me. I dropped my hands on either side of his head with a strangled groan. The rhythm between us was sedate and steady, but it was about all I could take. Being so intimately connected to him was overwhelming, and I couldn’t look away. I watched the way he responded to every long, slow roll of my hips, the way he thrashed his head and rolled his eyes. He was so fucking beautiful. Once I knew he was past the hardest part, I could watch him forever. Nothing compared to being inside him, and suddenly, my whole body was on fire. I wanted to wrap my bones around him and never let go.
Ash brought his hand to the back of my neck and pulled me down, kissing me before he broke away with a breathless groan. “Fuck, fuck, fuck. You’re too damn good at this.”
I snapped my hips faster, harder, and beneath me, he began to unravel. I’d already brought him to the brink with my mouth, and as he arched his back away from the mattress, I knew he was close. “Look at me.” Our gazes locked and renewed heat spread through my belly. “I want to see you.”
He gripped my shoulders and sucked in a desperate breath. “Pete… I….”
There was an edge of panic in his voice, the way there always was when he lost control. With one hand, I pried his white-knuckled fingers from my skin. I clutched them tightly, fighting for what little control I had left and brought them up to my lips. It was the reassurance he needed, and with a final soft groan his release pulsed between us. The jolt of his body pushed me into my own climax as he shuddered and writhed beneath me. White-hot bursts of pleasure roared through me, spinning the room as it hit me full force.
Coherent thought abandoned me, but I fought hard to get it back. The euphoric wave buzzing through me was fucking amazing, but with Ash shaking in my arms, it quickly cleared. I held him tightly, keeping my heavy breaths away from his face, and pressed soft kisses to the tips of his fingers until I felt his breathing slow. Relieved, I lifted my weight off him and tried to pull out, but he protested and held me still another moment before he finally let go.
He was staring at the ceiling when I came back from chucking the condom and cleaning up, his eyes glazed and drowsy. I wrapped my arms around him and pulled him close. “Do you want a bath?”
It had been a while since we’d had sex that way. However good it had felt, he was going to hurt in the morning.
He shook his head in a lazy motion, barely moving at all. “No, I wanna stay here.”
Ash was Texan by birth, but his southern roots only laced his speech when he was too tired to repress them… too tired to block out all the horrible shit that kept an invisible barrier between us.
He was just seventeen when his friend Ellie found him drawing on the streets of Philadelphia. He was homeless and drew comic book characters on the sidewalk for money. The way she told it, he was one of the best street artists in the city, but he said he just did it to survive. Ellie was in college at the time, and she spent the next three years trying to get him to go to a shelter. Eventually, she got her way, and when she moved back to Chicago a few months later, she asked him to come with her. It took him a year of procrastination and pulling his shit together, but after finishing his tattoo apprenticeship in Philly, he did just that.
Living together was a huge adjustment for both of us. Some days I thought we’d cracked it, but others….
I draped the comforter over us and tucked it around his shoulders. He settled against me with his arm stretched out across my torso. I ran my hand absently along his bicep and enjoyed the rare moment. Though he could be tactile when his mood was right, he rarely cuddled up to me so freely. Most times, he preferred our positions reversed—him on his back with his arms around me.
Curious, I pressed a kiss to the top of his sweat-dampened head. “You okay?”
“Yeah, I just missed you.”
I smiled into the darkness. “I missed you too.”
A light hum was his only answer, so I held him a bit tighter and made the most of having him curled against me. After a while, I felt him shift. I opened my eyes and quirked an eyebrow, too mellow to speak. He just stared at me, but his blazing eyes told me what I knew he found so hard to articulate.
I put my hand to his head and nudged it back down with a sad smile.
Love you too.
I loved my bedroom in daylight. It had a big window, a high ceiling, and pure-white walls that made the world feel clean. White walls were good for that, they just went on and on, and when the sun shone on them they lit up the whole room, and with it, my tired brain. But it was a different story at night. When darkness fell, the high ceiling dropped and the white walls were suffocating as they closed in around me.
Not that it mattered. It wasn’t like I wanted to sleep. Sleeping was dangerous. Shadows, nightmares, and—even worse—that sinking feeling when you woke up to find you were still the same bag of shit you were the day before. Fuck that. Waking up was a crappy way to start the day. It was better to stay awake, let the days blur into each other, and wait until they ceased to matter. These days, insomnia was all I had.
Life was different when I lived on the street. Half-asleep, half-awake, stoned on whatever I could get my hands on, everything was gray and blurred. Sometimes I couldn’t figure out if I was moving slower, or the world faster, and I didn’t much care. It was better that way; oblivion suited me better. These days, I saw too much. I felt too much.
Sighing, I slid off the windowsill, abandoned my bedroom, and padded through the empty apartment to the kitchen. I reached for some juice, ignoring my natural instinct to grab a beer. The mood I was in, if I started drinking, I’d never stop. Instead, I took my favorite glass—the one with the star engraved in its base—and went to the living room with my sketchbook to sit in the big chair by the window. I sat down and stared out at the city below. The neon twinkle of the street felt like an old friend, comforting me enough to put pencil to paper. There was no light in the apartment, so I couldn’t really see the page, but sometimes it was better that way. Getting lost in my work, the details were undefined and soothing. Occasionally, I even got a pleasant surprise when I examined the sketch in daylight. Such occasions were rare, though. I gave up in the end and shoved the pad under the couch.
Yeah, that’s right; sometimes I hid from my sketchbooks too.
I sat motionless for a while, but without my work to distract me, the eerie silence of the apartment got under my skin. I still wasn’t used to that. Though I’d been off the streets for more than a year, the places I’d lived before I came to Chicago were noisy: rowdy Philadelphia hostels full of drunks and attitude. The peace of my new home scared the hell out of me, and it didn’t take long for me to resort to my usual habit of turning the TV on low to keep me company. Nature shows were my favorite, especially the ones about the ocean. With all the lights off, the TV turned the whole room blue. I liked that, especially when the walls rippled.
I curled up on the couch and stared at deep-water fish. I’d been sitting there a while when the front door creaked open.
My roommate worked funny hours. Sometimes I hardly saw him at all, but that suited me. I spent enough time with people at work. By the end of the day I’d usually run out of energy to communicate. I only regretted being so antisocial when each night seemed to go on forever. Pete didn’t seem to mind my nocturnal ways. He was either resigned to me being a freak or he didn’t notice. I didn’t care either way. We’d only exchanged a few words since my friend Ellie had answered his advertisement for me a few weeks before. He wasn’t even here the day I moved in. Usually, when I heard him coming, I’d get up and slink away, but tonight, in the blue-tinged gloom of the room, I found I couldn’t be bothered to do even that. It was dark; with any luck he’d fail to see me.
Or not. I looked up and there he was, standing in front of me, all olive-skinned, dark-haired six feet of him. A grin warmed his face. Even in the darkness I could see his brown eyes gleaming.
“Hey,” I returned awkwardly.
That was the other reason I avoided him. He was fucking hot. Talking wasn’t my thing at the best of times, and with him, it was hard to speak without tripping over my words or gawking like an idiot. Sometimes, he was lucky enough to get both.
“Nah, not tired,” I lied. “What about you? Long night?”
“Fuck, yeah.” He stretched his arms over his head with a wide yawn. “Don’t think I could sleep, though. Tired but wired.”
I smiled in spite of myself. “I know that feeling.”
That earned me a smirk. “Yeah, looks like it. Are you working tomorrow?”
“No.” I shook my head absently. It already was tomorrow, and I hadn’t even thought about how I was going to spend my midweek day off.
Pete eyed me shrewdly, the way he had the first time I’d met him. I wanted to look away but didn’t, because something in his eyes held me still. It was weird—like the way my friend Ellie could hold my sketchy attention—but it wasn’t quite the same, and not quite as effective, either, since it seemed he’d asked me a question and I hadn’t even heard him. “Hmm?”
“Breakfast,” he repeated. “There’s no food in this place. Want to go to the diner?”
He said it like it was the most normal thing to do at four in the morning, but who was I to judge him? I was wide-awake, and it wasn’t like I had anything better to do.
I shrugged and got to my feet. “Sure.”
He seemed slightly surprised that I’d accepted his invitation, but he waited patiently while I got my shit together. I followed him outside, and the moment I set foot on the street, I felt better. The cold air stung my scratchy eyes and felt good against my skin. I lit a cigarette and fell into step beside him, enjoying the sensation of being in the one environment where I truly felt I belonged.
Pete was silent for a while, and I let him be. Though he’d said he felt wired, he seemed half-asleep. After a block or two, he turned to me. “So you’re an artist?”
I snorted and rolled my eyes. “I wouldn’t call it that. I do tattoos at Finnegan’s on Fort Street.”
Pete shrugged. “That’s still art, isn’t it? I knew it was tats. Your friend told me when you came to look at the room, remember?”
I shook my head slightly. I was in a world of my own the day Ellie dragged me off her couch to view the room in Pete’s apartment. Until then, I’d been content enough to observe Chicago through her high-rise apartment windows.
I’d heard it said all big cities were the same, but Chicago didn’t feel like Philadelphia, and it certainly didn’t feel like the asshole of Texas, where I grew up.
Some days I wondered what Ellie would make of Texas. She’d been all over the world with her wealthy folks, but always the big cities and those coastal places you saw on postcards, the ones with the white beaches and really blue oceans. Perhaps she’d like it, but who knew? I could hardly remember it myself. By the time she found me sleeping on the streets of Philadelphia, I’d been away from the South for more than two years.
Now I’d left Philly behind too, and I wondered how long it would take me to forget it.
I turned my gaze back on Pete, picturing the day we’d first met, but it was no good. I remembered nothing from that day but how amazing his dark skin looked against the smooth white walls. “What do you do?”
“I’m a paramedic,” he said. “That’s why I’m not around sometimes. I pretty much just work and sleep when I’m on rotation.”
Paramedic. Damn it, I knew that already. Ellie told me before I’d even met him. What the fuck was up with my brain tonight? I’d even seen him in his uniform, and that wasn’t a sight I’d forget in a hurry.
I’d also noticed that he slept a lot when he was at home. One afternoon, I’d discovered his habit of sleeping with his bedroom door wide open. I hated that. Open doors bothered me, especially when I was asleep. Odd, because for a long time, my life didn’t contain any damn doors. That night, to avoid disturbing him, I’d stayed out and picked up a chick in a bar. It was morning by the time I came home to an empty apartment.
Pete led me to a booth in the deserted diner and slid into the seat opposite me. “You want coffee?”
The server poured coffee, took our orders, and left. Pete eyed the sugar I dumped in my coffee when she was gone. “Sweet tooth, huh?”
“Yep,” I admitted with a reluctant smile. Ellie had said the same thing a few weeks after meeting me too. “Don’t leave any cookies lying around.”
“I’ll remember that next time my mom sends me a care package.”
He laughed. The rich sound made me look up from the swirling coffee in my mug. I didn’t really like coffee, but it was habit to drink anything warm I could find when the weather got cold. “You get those, too? I thought it was just Ellie’s mom who did stuff like that.”
“Nah, moms are all the same.” Pete took a quick sip of his own scarily black coffee. “My mom lives up in Edgewater. Whenever I get up there, she gives me a big box of home-cooked food. She’s Italian, so she always cooks too much.”
Italian. Suddenly his dark hair and deep-brown eyes made sense. Shit, why am I looking at his eyes so much?
“What about your mom?” Pete asked when I didn’t say anything. “Does she live in Philadelphia? That’s where you lived before, right?”
“For a while,” I said absently. “My mom lived in Texas, but she died when I was a kid.”
Pete was silent as he sized me up in that subtle way of his. “My dad died when I was fourteen,” he said eventually. “He worked on an oil rig, and the drillship he was on capsized and sank.”
His eyes flashed with an emotion I vaguely recognized. It was gone before I could name it, but I figured it wasn’t anything good. My own father was a mystery to me—I didn’t even know his name. My mom died of a drug overdose, and it was possible he’d shared her fate, but I didn’t grieve for either of them. You couldn’t miss something you’d never had.
Pete reached for his coffee again and took a slow sip. “Man, I needed that,” he said wearily. “Do you have any brothers or sisters?”
“No. My mom was seventeen when she had me.”
“Seventeen?” He let out a low whistle. “Wow. I saw a fourteen-year-old give birth last year. These kids get younger, man.”
“You sound like Ellie’s dad.”
“Are you calling me old?”
From his appearance, he didn’t look much older than me, but he had his own place, a real job, and his eyes… damn, they just seemed so wise. “Maybe,” I countered as my curiosity got the better of me. “How old are you?”
“I turned twenty-four a few weeks ago,” he said with a wink. “Is that too old for you?”
The coffee in my mouth went down the wrong way and made me choke. What the hell was wrong with me? Thankfully, the waitress arrived with our food. She put the plates on the table, refilled Pete’s coffee, and walked away without a word. I took my cue and hastily changed the subject. “Why did you become a paramedic?”
“Didn’t have any better ideas.”
“Do you like it?” It felt strange to be so interested in another person, but for some reason, I wanted to know.
Pete glanced up from his food. He reached for the hot sauce and doctored his eggs while he considered his answer. “Some days, but then some days it sucks.”
“What about today?” I chewed slowly and deliberately on some toast. I was still learning to eat normally and not shovel every meal down in ten seconds flat. “Was today good or bad?”
Pete made a face somewhere between a wince and a scowl. “Today sucked ass. Did you hear about that big pileup in West Loop?”
I shook my head. I’d worked until late and then sulked at home. I hadn’t seen any news reports or newspapers. “Was it bad?”
His answer was short and clipped, so I let it go. I had plenty of shit I didn’t want to talk about, so it was only fair I give him the same privilege. He changed the subject, and the conversation stayed light after that. Turned out he liked ink, and he had some of his own.
Pete took off his jacket and rolled up the sleeve of his T-shirt. Despite myself, I leaned forward eagerly. Tattoos with personal meaning fascinated me. They often told me more about a person than their words ever could.
I took my time examining his two pieces. The oilrig sketch on the inside of his bicep was really cool. With the American flag curled around it and the date inscribed beneath, it was clearly a tribute to his father. I’d seen and done loads of designs dedicated to dead relatives. His was definitely one of the best I’d seen. His second ink, a small set of stars, was on the opposite shoulder. I looked at it with a critical eye. It was rougher, less refined, and it hadn’t been finished well, but it still looked amazing against his smooth olive skin.
“You look like you’re plotting,” Pete remarked as he rolled his sleeves back down and shrugged into his jacket. “Are you going to creep into my room some night and fix it?”
The plate of food I’d eaten felt suddenly heavy in my stomach. I swallowed the last of my cold coffee. “Are you ready to go?”
Pete shot me a strange look. “Sure, let me just get the check.”
“Nah, I got this.” I reached for my wallet and threw some bills on the table. Suddenly, I needed to get the hell out of there. I slid out of my seat and made for the door without looking to see if he followed.
I leaned against the wall outside. The fresh air cleared my head, but I could still hear the blood pumping in my ears. I hated that noise. The pounding made me dizzy, and I felt completely detached from the world around me, like I was looking down on myself from another planet.
Fuck, fuck, fuck.
I’d pretty much forgotten about Pete until someone kicked my foot. I snapped my eyes open and there he was again, grinning like he didn’t have a care in the world. “Let’s go home.”
I love Ash and Pete's romance but it's the emotional impact of their story that will stay with me.
Read the full review at
This book was powerful, I felt such a connection to Ash and Pete as they slogged through life.
I’m not sure if I even have the words to explain to you how amazing this one story is. How perfect. How beautiful. This book is poignant and so very powerful. It’s heartbreaking and heart-warming at the same time. The trauma, the fear, the hope. It’s beautiful. I can’t say enough how much I love this book. I highly, highly recommend Slide by Garrett Leigh.
Slide makes you feel the wide range of emotions from heartbreaking sadness to utter joy.
I am officially in bits. This book blew me away, and left me shattered. What a ride, what a journey, what a read.
Hang on to your garters, smuffins, because Slide is one hell of a ride.
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