Chapter 1

“WISEASS,” TREY muttered.

The text message from Smoke read Having wonderful time. Wish you were here. Can’t meet the train. Sent your fruit flies to give you a lift.

Trey typed in thx, wisea$$ and sent it.

Usually he drove to the rodeo. While taking the train was different, it left too much time to think, to anticipate…. But was it the bull riding or seeing Smoke again that had him tied up in knots?

For once, Trey had a good feeling about the upcoming event. Maybe his buck-off streak was finally over. He usually rode better at Gay Rodeo Association events anyway. Maybe it was his turn for a win in the perennial competition between him and the bulls. Ah, who was he kidding? The real prize was winning the contest between him and Smoke.

After the train pulled into the station and jolted to a stop, Trey stepped out onto the platform. Both the arena and motel were close enough to walk, even carrying two bags stuffed full of gear, but he didn’t have to. As soon as he reached the street, a red pickup pulled in to the curb.

Alex leaned out and waved. “Hey, Trey. Going our way?”

“Hi, Alex. You’re a poet.” Toting his bags, Trey walked over to the truck.

“And don’t I know it.” Alex giggled and flipped her hair back over her shoulder.

Trey looked past her to smile at the driver. “Well, hellooooo, Dolly!”

She was thick-built and dressed in a plaid shirt and worn jeans. Her dark hair was cut so short her cowboy hat covered most of it. “Fuck off. Doesn’t that joke ever get as old and boring to you as it does for me?”

“Nope. Would you like it better if I called you Darlena?” Trey smirked at Dolly.

“You’re cruising for a bruising, buddy boy. What were my parents thinking?”

“Guess they didn’t know you’d grow up to be a dyke.”

Dolly grinned. “Can’t really blame them for that. Never know how a calf will turn out when it’s born.”

Alex gave a ladylike snort of laughter. “I think you turned out just fine, babe.” Her long blonde hair was curled and her makeup perfect. The yoke of her cowgirl shirt was outlined with rhinestones, and her tight pink jeans were stuffed into high-heeled cowboy boots.

“Throw your stuff in the back, Trey, and take a load off.” Alex slid closer to Dolly and patted the bench seat invitingly.

The electronic chirp announced Dolly had unlocked the camper back, and Trey obeyed orders, hefting his bags inside.

Then he got in and kissed Alex’s cheek. “How you doing, Alex?”

“We’re both great. Excited for the rodeo?” Alex rested her hand on Dolly’s thigh.

Dolly drove expertly with her right hand while letting her left rest on the side mirror outside. She leaned forward to talk across Alex. “Staying at the Courtyard like us?”

“Yeah, it’s the closest to the arena.”

“Maybe we can all share a suite.” Dolly let out a deep bark of laughter.

Trey made a face at the thought. “Appreciate the lift, but I’ll get my own room, thanks.”

“How’s your brother?” Alex asked.

“The same.”

“Homophobic and proud of it?”

“Pretty much still a jackass,” Trey admitted.

“Jamar the Jackass. At least he comes by it honestly. Still don’t know how the two of you ever came up in the same family.” Dolly shook her head. “Your parents weren’t much to—”

“We get along all right. As long as we don’t spend too much time together.” Trey rushed to interrupt Dolly. He didn’t much enjoy talking about his family.

“Kinda rough when you both work the same ranch. You save up enough for your own place yet?”

“Not yet.” Trey shook his head. “Got my eye on a nice one, though.”

After a moment’s silence, Alex said, “You’re traveling heavier than usual, Trey. You going out for the Hoedown Showdown for a change?”

Trey grunted but didn’t answer. His heart started to beat a little faster. When Dolly turned into the motel parking lot, he caught a glimpse of Smoke’s truck.

“I’ll drop you at the office so you can register,” Dolly said. “We’re in 24 if you want to get a room near us. Come by for a drink after you check in, and you can pick up your gear.”

“Sounds good.”

“If I know Smoke, your riding buddy scored room 69.”

“Oh yeah, I have no doubt he’ll score this weekend.”

“Well, you would know better than us.” Alex nudged him in the ribs and giggled.

Dolly stopped in front of the office. “It’s that cocky smile of his, no pun intended. Like he fell in a pool of smug and didn’t wipe his lips after.”

“Yeah, it’s a good look on him. He’s riding hot.” And drop-dead sexy. Smoke’s riding made everyone think about fucking. At least, it made him think about it. Trey got out of the truck and shut the door. “Thanks for the lift, ladies.” He tapped the door twice.

De nada,” Dolly said.

“He’s not the only one who’s hot.” Alex slid closer to the window. She winked at Dolly and they both giggled. Then Dolly drove off, leaving Trey to take care of business.

Guess he hadn’t hidden that torch he carried for Smoke as well as he’d hoped. They were only travel buddies to save on expenses, or that’s what he told everyone. Including himself.

But back to the business at hand. According to the sign, the motel still had vacancies. He hated to waste money on a room by himself if he could pay only half by bunking with Smoke. That is, if Smoke wanted to share this time. Trey never took it for granted, even though they usually did. He spent a lot of time guessing about Smoke.

Except he would be crushed if Smoke changed their arrangement. He hated himself for allowing Smoke to have that much power over him. A long time ago, Trey had decided he would never let anyone hurt him again. Letting Smoke in was too much of a risk. Maybe it would be wiser to get his own room anyway….

While he stood arguing with himself, the decision was taken out of Trey’s hands. An arm snaked around his neck, pulling him closer against a hard, lean body, and a husky voice throbbed into his ear, “What did the horse say to the gay cowboy?”

His dick jumped in his jeans, but Trey acted as if it was nothing unusual to be accosted in the parking lot by another man. Even an incredibly beautiful and desirable one. “Haaaaaa-aaaay! Wiseass.”

“I’ve told you this one before?”

“Every single time.”

“But you laugh every time.”

“Who’s laughing?”

Smoke stuck a finger in his ribs, and Trey squealed with nervous laughter. Trey smacked Smoke’s hand away and twisted out of his hold. Smoke was so good-looking it was like a kick to the solar plexus whenever Trey saw him. He wanted to grab Smoke and kiss him senseless, but not in front of witnesses.

Despite the smirky expression that both confused and outraged him, as if Smoke knew just what he was thinking, Trey was glad to see him.

“Looking for someone to show you the ropes?”

“Why, you think you’re up for the job?” Trey tried to play it cool.

“Why don’t you come to my room and find out?”

Trey laughed. Who could resist an invitation like that? “Better than my last offer.”

“Who?”

“Dolly was threatening me with adjoining rooms.”

Smoke belted out a laugh. “With Texas Barbie flapping and squealing in the same suite, you wouldn’t get much sleep. Better bunk with me.”

“Yeah, I need my rest before I ride.”

“Pity.”

“Why’s that?” Trey stiffened in anticipation of rejection. Trey tried to take each event as it came, but a big part of going to the rodeo was the chance to hook up with Smoke.

“I was planning to keep you up, at least for a while.”

Well, the emphasis on the word up was pretty clear. Trey had to look away from the smoldering gaze Smoke leveled at him before his zipper burst into flames. The flutter in his palms turned into a full-on earthquake. How could Smoke always do this to him?

Smoke whistled nonchalantly as he led the way to the room, as if he hadn’t just set Trey’s world on fire, even though his smirk said he most certainly knew what was up.

Like a man dying of thirst, Trey snuck a glance to drink in Smoke’s appearance. Smoke’s skin was darker than his. His body was graceful and whipcord thin but freakishly strong like most bull riders. And so incredibly beautiful, unlike most bull riders. The silver conchos on the band of his black hat gleamed in the sun. His rolled-up sleeves exposed strong, sinewy forearms.

When Trey rolled up his sleeves, he looked as if he was heading out for a hard day of labor. When Smoke did, it was style. Trey had never expected to develop a fetish for Smoke’s arms, but here he was, staring at the four inches of skin above Smoke’s wrists.

A shiver ran up Trey’s spine as Smoke unlocked the door. Outside Smoke might tease, but behind closed doors, he lost the smirk. Trey never knew what was going to happen on the other side except that he wasn’t going to be the one in control. Maybe that’s why he’d considered taking a room by himself. Once the door was shut between them and the world, he knew he was lost.

Inside the darkened room, he found himself immediately pressed up against the door. Smoke’s mouth was on his, and Smoke’s fingers caught in his clothing, trying to slide under his shirt in search of skin. Callused palms scratched his chest, and urgent fingers squeezed his buttocks, then darted up to unbutton his shirt. Smoke skimmed his hands over Trey’s body as if trying to touch him everywhere at once. Trey had missed those hands on his skin, something he hated to admit even to himself.

Smoke pushed Trey’s jeans down to his ankles. All the blood in Trey’s body went straight to his cock, and his head hit the door, knocking his hat off. He closed his eyes and gave himself up to the tornado that was Smoke ravaging him. Shaking too hard to resist, he flattened his hands against the wood to keep himself upright. Urgent, greedy little sounds embarrassed him until he realized they were coming from Smoke devouring him like a starving animal.

Smoke’s tongue was in his mouth, then swirling around a nipple, now tracing a line down his torso, leaving a cool trail on Trey’s skin that made him shiver. Trey’s legs were trapped by his jeans, and Smoke took advantage, stroking up his thighs and trailing his fingers in the crease between his leg and groin without touching his cock. Trey’s dick twitched painfully when Smoke went to his knees.

Trey thrust his hips forward blindly, seeking Smoke’s mouth. He growled in frustration when he heard the familiar soft, taunting chuckle. Smoke refused to take his cock in his mouth, preferring to tease him, softly licking at his hard length and then sucking Trey’s balls until he was desperate with need. Trey was no longer a teenager who got a woody in a passing breeze, but somehow Smoke always got him hotter than anyone else he’d ever been with. His legs shook with the effort to remain upright.

“Has to be… voodoo….” Trey’s voice broke when Smoke swiped a thumb over the tip of his cock. He rocked his hips in frustration, banging his ass against the door in a desperate cadence.

“That’s right, baby. It’s all a magic spell.” Smoke’s voice was barely a throaty whisper.

“Touch me,” Trey begged.

Instead Smoke released him, and Trey staggered forward in search of contact. He opened his eyes to see Smoke on his feet, staring at him with that alluring, mocking, inviting smile he both hated and loved. On the nightstand stood a large bottle of lube and a pile of condoms. Looked as if Smoke was all set for a busy weekend.

Glancing down to check if Smoke was hard also, Trey was relieved to see the outline of his cock pushing at the fly of his jeans. Despite the evidence of his arousal, maddeningly Smoke was able to maintain complete control as he strolled toward the bed. He made sure he had Trey’s full attention before he started to strip, although Trey didn’t know where else anyone would be looking once Smoke started to undress. Smoke slid his hands tantalizingly over his smooth torso while he took off his shirt. Then he toed off his boots, somehow making it look seductive and graceful.

Unlike Trey, Smoke had barely any body hair, only a sexy trail that started under his belly button and led downward to his groin.

When he was completely naked, Smoke stroked himself lazily. “You look like a scaredy-cat ironed up against the door like that.”

“Show you who’s a scaredy-cat.” Forgetting the jeans bunched around his ankles, Trey took a step forward and almost face-planted on the carpet. He lumbered around awkwardly as he tried to work the leg of his jeans off along with his boot. Finally he sat on the floor to do it. Going to his knees, he struggled out of his shirt, stymied by the one button Smoke had left fastened.

Compared to Smoke’s smooth striptease, Trey felt like a blind ox, but he always did around Smoke. He lurched to his feet, determined to come up the winner in this game they always played, but need made him clumsy when he launched himself at Smoke.

Sidestepping at the last moment, Smoke laughed when Trey landed heavily on the bed. Instantly Trey felt Smoke’s weight on his back, blanketing him with smooth skin as hot as the breath that wafted over his ear.

“Oh look, you’re on the bottom.”

Trey knew what that meant. Only Smoke could make him want—no, need to do things he wouldn’t do with anyone else. Being in the same room with Smoke made his bones melt and his brain shut down. Trey wanted him to have whatever he desired.

Helpless to resist, he allowed Smoke to move him into any position he chose. The licking started again—his throat, his nipples, his cock, balls, and hole all wet under the assault of Smoke’s tongue. He lay panting when Smoke let him go to prepare. And somehow Smoke ripping the condom wrapper open with his teeth became a very erotic thing, full of snarl and hunger.

And then finally Trey was on his knees, back arched, clenching with impatience as Smoke’s cock teased his hole. Smoke dug his fingers into Trey’s hips, searing his fingerprints into his skin, marking him. Trey knew he would feel them for days, if he was lucky. Spreading his legs and getting ready to be taken wasn’t easy for Trey. But somewhere along the line, Smoke seemed to have slapped an invisible brand on Trey, turning him about as resistant as whipped cream.

He needed the dull burn of Smoke’s shaft stretching him. His muscles worked, pulling Smoke in deeper as he entered. Each slow stroke melted any lingering reservations with a tiny orgasmic rush of pleasure.

Although he desperately needed to touch himself, Trey braced both hands against the headboard to make it good for Smoke. There was nothing gentle about the way Smoke slammed into him when he picked up speed, but Trey pushed back with equal force to meet every stroke. But when Smoke reached for his erection, Trey slapped his hand away and bit back a groan. Smoke stopped fucking him.

“Let me… get you off….” Smoke’s breath came in short bursts.

But he couldn’t. He might surrender everything else to Smoke, but not this. Trey grabbed his own cock. He wouldn’t last long, barely stroking himself before the aching pressure in his groin built to the point of no return. He rode the sensation as close to the edge as possible, dreading the plunge, wanting to prolong the anticipation until he could bear it no longer.

One last stroke and he clamped down hard around the cock impaling him. Darkness swam behind his eyes, and he couldn’t breathe. When the boom of his racing heart finally receded, his fingers were slick with come and his face was crushed into the pillow. The only thing grounding him was Smoke’s weight on his back.

Trey felt Smoke’s lips on his shoulder as he waited for Trey to catch his breath. Then Smoke pulled Trey down onto his side, managing to stay buried inside him while they moved. He slid his own leg under Trey’s to support it, spreading Trey wide. With long, slow strokes, Smoke resumed fucking Trey.

Although his cock was spent, Trey loved it. Floating in the afterglow of his orgasm, feeling Smoke’s arm tight around him, hand planted on his chest, being filled with Smoke’s cock, gave Trey a sense of completion he’d never allowed himself to feel before. He loved the little moans coming from Smoke as he rammed home, loved the way Smoke’s body stiffened, the swell of his cock inside stretching Trey’s hole even farther, and then the staccato jerk of Smoke’s hips when he came. Lying curled together afterward, sated and exhausted, he could pretend Smoke was his. Smoke’s hand, warm on his thigh, reminded him of Alex’s hand planted on Dolly’s leg.

“Guess you missed me after all.” Smoke’s hot breath wafting over his ear sent a shiver down his spine.

Unable to say the words, he found himself nodding. When Smoke laughed, his cock moved inside Trey’s ass, still hard, still owning him.

But Smoke wasn’t Trey’s and never would be. Smoke was like the wind, and nobody could corral a free spirit like his. Anything more would lead to complications, and Trey had always tried to steer clear of those. If this was all Trey could get, he would take it. He let out a deep sigh, snuggling closer in Smoke’s arms.