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Flying Blind

Contributors: Jodi Payne and BA Tortuga
Series: Standalone #with BA Tortuga
Genre: , , , ,
Release Date: July 28, 2020
Pages: 427

Flying Blind

An East Meets Western M/M Romance

Sometimes the best thing about living in New York is leaving it.

When January Bell takes a risk on a business trip to Denver and introduces himself to the hot as fire rodeo cowboy across the bar, he has no idea what he’s in for. Hawk is like nobody he’s ever met, and Jan finds he is intrigued enough to want more than just one night with the deceptively complex man.

Hawk Destry is working hard to wring every moment he can out of his bull riding career. He’s used to beating the eight second clock, but he is slowly losing his eyesight and he doesn’t have a lot of years left in the sport.

None of that seems to matter, though, when Hawk meets January, who treats him like he’s worth more off a bull than on one, and who’s willing to work just as hard to be with him.

The two men have to deal with distance and traveling, unexpected challenges when Hawk visits New York, family on both sides, and neither of them saw any of it coming. Eventually even Hawk’s dangerous job is thrown into sharp relief when tragedy strikes. How will January and Hawk find their way if they’re flying blind?

Buy the Book: Amazon

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Chapter One

Sometimes the best thing about living in New York City was leaving it.

“What can I get you?” The hotel bartender was burly and handsome, with deep-set dark eyes under a heavy brow and an easy smile framed by a carefully trimmed beard.

January smiled at the man and slid a credit card across the bar. “Do you have Glenlivet?”

“Yessir, twelve okay?”

“That’s fine. A double.”

The bartender picked up his card and glanced at it. “Running a tab, Mister Bell?”

“Yes, thank you, uh…”

He got a friendly smile. “Alex.”

January nodded. “Good to meet you, Alex.”

“What brings you to Denver?” Alex pulled the bottle down from a high shelf and set a glass on the bar in front of him. “Business? A wedding?”

He grinned and shook his head. It was a hotel bar and he was wearing one of his favorite suits. Either one of those things was a good bet. “Just a couple of business meetings.” He wasn’t going to say much more, he didn’t like to talk about his philanthropy. But his foundation was always searching for new opportunities and sometimes he had to travel to find them.

Alex poured him a generous double, put the cap on the bottle and left it within easy reach. Good call.

A pair of women waved to get Alex’s attention and the bartender inclined his head. “Excuse me. We’ll get busy here in a bit. Wave when you need me.”

“Will do. Thank you.” He swirled his whiskey and sniffed it, sighing as the rich, warm scent filled his nostrils, making his mouth water. The weather report was on the TV over the bar and he was surprised that despite the altitude, it wasn’t much cooler in Denver than it was back home. Even so, the Mile High City was much more pleasant than the Big Apple tonight.

January touched the glass to his lips, savoring the burn as that first jarring sip soaked into his tongue and slid down his throat, setting him tingling. They’d split up months ago, but this was only his second trip without Lucas and, although the bar was lively, he still felt lonely.

Or no.

Not so much lonely as alone.

He was bad at alone. He’d been both blessed and cursed with a strong, extroverted personality. He could talk to anyone, but he really did need someone to talk to, and his first glass of whiskey was always too quiet.

A raucous band pushed and bounced through the door—cowboy hats and jeans and an amazing array of sports tape and IcyHot and bruises.

“Yo, Alex!”

“Guys, Coors Light all around?”

“All but for Charlie here, man. He lost his fight with Railrunner.” One of the cowboys bellied up to the bar, damn near blinding him with a wild, excited shit-eating grin. “Let’s make him a virgin something frozen.”

Cowboys. One more reason to love Denver.

“You got it.” Alex set four silver cans on the bar. “One fakey Pina Colada, coming up.”

January glanced at the cowboy over his glass. “Somebody is on the good drugs, huh?” This cowboy seemed pretty beat up too.

“Got his ass trampled in the dirt, yessir. Made his ride, though.” God, that smile—part Dennis the Menace, part Mathew McConaughey.

Made his ride? Come on, Jan. You’re a smart guy. The pieces were floating around but he wasn’t putting them together. Injured cowboy, summertime, Denver.

Trampled. Did cowboys do MMA? January tilted his head, failing to get a look at the eyes shadowed by the man’s hat, though he caught the bright blond hair well enough.

“Railrunner, huh? Son of a bitch.” Alex peered over his shoulder at the group of men in hats as the blender whirred. “Is Charlie still on the roster for tomorrow? My girl got tickets for the show. I might have a little money on him.” Alex grinned at the cowboy sheepishly. “Sorry.”

Tickets.

“Sure he is, but you wasted your money. I’m in a solid third, and I’m taking the short-go and the event, you watch.” The guy didn’t seem to be worried in the least, or offended.

“It’s no fun to go after the easy money.” That was an obvious tease. “I guess I’ll see how you do tomorrow, won’t I?” Alex shut the blender off, poured the frozen mixture into a glass and set it on the bar. A couple of arms reached between January and the cowboy and pulled all the drinks off the bar, leaving one beer behind.

I’ll take rodeo for five-hundred, Alex. “Bulls?”

“Oh, these crazy bastards are bull riders. Good guys, great tippers, but rowdy? Wow.”

Wow was right. But they were just having fun, which was good by him. “I can’t say I’ve ever met a bull rider.”

“You want me to introduce you to Hawk there? He’s hilarious. He’s like talking to someone from a movie or something.”

He did like the accent. The shoulders too, if he was honest. And the cowboy’s ass, if he let himself go there.

And why not go there?

“Sure. I’d love that.” He’d talked to celebrities before, even straight ones.

“I’ll make the intros when he comes to grab his beer.” Alex nodded to him, like he did this every day, which January supposed he did.

“Cool. Thanks.” Well, that would never happen in New York. He sipped his drink, enjoying the warmth and watched the group of men out of the corner of his eye. So much testosterone standing in those boots. It was hot as hell.

Hawk did, in fact, come for his beer, nodding to Alex as his hand wrapped around it. “Charlie says you did good, man. Thanks.”

“No problem. Hey, you met Mr. Bell here? He’s in on business.”

“I haven’t.” Hawk turned to him, eyes hidden behind thick, little round glasses, and held out one square, scarred up hand. “Hawk Destry, pleased to meet you.”

It only took him a second to decide it wasn’t worth the risk of getting his ass kicked, so when he shook Hawk’s hand he was careful to keep it all business, despite the allure of that stubborn chin. “January Bell. Good to meet you too. Alex says you’re a bull rider?”

“That’s the rumor.” Hawk climbed up on the barstool next to him, the man laughing at himself. “Some days I do better than others.”

January grinned. “Didn’t you say you had this one in the bag?”

“I sure did, and I stand by that. Assuming I get a good draw, my bull rope doesn’t pop on me, and I keep riding like I have, I’m golden.” Hawk chuckled and rolled his eyes dramatically. “Good thing I tend to ride good late in the season, huh?”

He wasn’t sure how Hawk managed to pull off arrogance and self-awareness at the same time. It was fascinating. Maybe the smile kind of smoothed out the edges. Whatever it was, January liked it. “Your draw is what? The order you ride in?”

“The bull you ride. The order goes by ranking. Right now I’m sitting in third. We’ll see if I can’t improve it.”

He’d love to have this cowboy in the bag. “Are any of these guys ahead of you right now?” He knew he was wasting his time, but January dared to lean in a little anyway and took a sip of his whiskey.

He swore he saw Hawk’s nostrils flare, the man tuning into him. “Charlie is, but he’s hurting bad.” The words were a fascinating mixture of sympathy and complete lack of care. “Tell me about you, now. Here on business?”

“Yes. I’ve got a couple of meetings, then I head back to New York.” He tossed out a bone. “Just three nights.”

“New York, huh? I been there a couple times for events. It’s huge and shiny. Lots of folks.”

“It’s both of those things. I love it, though the hustle and the crowds can get a little much sometimes.” Thankfully he had a little sanctuary on the Upper West Side with a view of the park. He spoiled himself, he knew. Even his suite at the hotel was a splurge. “Did you like it when you visited?”

“Sure did. I like seeing new stuff. My job keeps me on the road a lot, so it’s a good thing.” Was Hawk checking him out? Surely not. They didn’t make gay cowboys, did they?

“I get away once a month or so. More in the summer if I can find an excuse. It’s hot in the city. I like the mountains, even if I don’t get there as often as I’d like. I have a great view from my suite though.” He turned on his stool and swept the hem of his suit jacket off his hip to give Hawk more to glance at, if in fact the cowboy was looking. “Do you drink scotch? This is a nice one.”

“Is it?” That smile flashed again. “Let me buy us a round, then. See if our tastes mesh.”

Oh ho. So cowboys do come in gay. Sweet.

January caught Hawk’s arm as the man reached for his wallet, trying again to get a peek at Hawk’s eyes. The glasses were adorably geeky, incongruous under the hat. “Let me, please.”

There was a sizzling moment where the air between them burned, and it was blistering, dangerous, and sexual as hell. “Sounds like a plan.”

“It does, doesn’t it?” He let go of Hawk’s arm and waved the bartender over. There was no reason to play games with the pull so strong and clear between them. “Alex? I’ll take the bottle, and I’d like to close out my tab please.”

Alex seemed a little confused but nodded and punched something into the register. “You got it.”

January dipped his fingers into his inside jacket pocket, pulled out a business card and a pen, and wrote his suite number on the back.

“Sign here, Mr. Bell. I hope everything is all right?”

“Just fine, thank you.” He wrote in a generous tip and signed his name, then lifted the half-full bottle of whiskey off the bar and handed the business card to Hawk. “I look forward to seeing you again soon.”

“Give me two shakes to finish my beer.” Hawk lifted the bottle and saluted him before he headed over to his friends, moving slow and giving him a chance to see.

“Making new friends with a sh-uit, Hawk?” Charlie was slurring a bit, but between the bruised jaw and the drugs that wasn’t surprising. “What is he, a sh-ponsor?”

Hawk looked back at him, winked, then turned back to the group, giving him a nice view at a tiny, perfectly framed ass. “He ain’t with the tour, man. I thought maybe he was a fan. Y’all going to get Charlie here up to his bed?”

He was definitely a fan. Just not of the rodeo.

He left Hawk to finish his beer and make whatever exit he needed to make and took his bottle of scotch upstairs to his top-floor suite, where he poured himself another shot of liquid courage. He didn’t feel guilty or awkward; those weren’t things he had time for. But it had been a while since he’d quite so obviously let his dick do the thinking.

It wasn’t long before a knock sounded on the door, shave and a haircut. Hell, even the knock was brash, bold. He set two glasses next to the bottle on the dresser and went to answer the door.

There was a cowboy at his door all right. Boots, hat, jeans, square shoulders, bravado and all. Something about the way Hawk was standing felt a little like a challenge.

“Hey. Come on in.”

“Thanks for the invite. I appreciate it.”

“It’s… good to be appreciated.” He’d heard a lot of pick-up lines, but that was a new one. He stepped aside to let Hawk enter, laughing gently as he closed and locked the door behind them. “Do you not get many invitations?”

“I’ve had a couple three. Just needed to make sure we understood what I came up for.” Suddenly Hawk was right there, solid as a rock, one hand on his hip.

“Scotch?” January teased.

Jesus. Hawk was giving off more heat than the sun. And with that touch on his hip, whatever electricity had passed between them at the bar was back, only this time without the restraint of public eyes on them, January could do what he’d wanted to do then. He reached for Hawk’s shirt and tugged it out of the well-worn wranglers, slipping a hand under the hem to rest on warm skin and the hardest set of abs he’d ever felt. “Damn, cowboy.”

“I live and die on core strength.” Hawk found one of his nipples through his dress shirt, thumb dragging over his skin.

Nothing like finding one of his hottest hot spots on the first try. January hissed and leaned into the touch, fingers going to work on Hawk’s shirt, buttons sliding open one by one from the bottom up. He inhaled deeply, the scent of hungry man making his balls ache. He reached up with both hands and touched the frame of Hawk’s glasses, raising an eyebrow. “May I?”

“Sure. Put them somewhere safe.” The stroking turned into a firm pinch.

His toes curled. That was fucking right. “Easy, I don’t want to drop them.” He took Hawk’s glasses, folded them carefully and set them behind him on the dresser, right next to the bottle of scotch. Didn’t get much safer than that. He bent a little, but he still couldn’t get a look at those eyes, hiding under the brim of Hawk’s hat.

He shrugged his jacket off catching it with one hand and tossing it over a chair.

“Where was I? Oh right. Here.” He fanned his fingers out across those abs again. “Living and dying.”

“Mmhmm.” Hawk put his hat, brim up, on the end table, exposing a short-cropped mass of white curls, and light blue eyes that were almost crystalline. Impressive. And lovely.

He pushed the shirt off Hawk’s shoulders and took a light, tentative kiss, wondering, asking. Not every man he’d known was into kissing a one-night stand. The answer was straightforward and direct—Hawk kissed him like he was storming a beach at Normandy.

Oh. Fuck yeah. It was so on.

He helped Hawk get the shirt off while they fought for tongue positions and with each other’s buttons and zippers. He got his fingers under Hawk’s waistband and cupped a smooth, hot ass cheek that was nearly as muscled as the cowboy’s abs. Fuck, that was hot. He worked out, but January felt like a marshmallow next to this guy.

Hawk was like a marble statue come to life—chiseled and hard, but still burning with his need. Burning he understood. He shouldered Hawk toward the bed. “Sit.” He gave Hawk a light shove to make his point and tugged the man’s jean’s over his hips.

“Let me get my boots, or I’ll be caught at the ankle.”

“Boots? Oh.” He stepped out of the way and watched as Hawk wrestled with the boots and the denim. Huh. He’d file that under things to know before fucking a cowboy.

He kicked off his own shoes while Hawk dealt with footwear drama and tossed his shirt aside with them.

Hawk stripped down, showing off a heavy cock, icy pubes, and a set of feathers inked over his collarbones.

“I hadn’t planned on bringing a stacked, sexy cowboy to my suite tonight, you know. I thought I’d be finishing another glass or two and watching a game on TV.” He kicked everything aside and stood at a short distance, letting Hawk have an eyeful too. Hawk seemed so young, naked and blue eyed and without that hat. He felt a little old.

“Mmm, that would be a waste. Look at you. I could eat your happy ass alive.”

He was a little more interested in Hawk’s happy ass, frankly. He moved forward, the proximity making him burn and his fingers long to touch. Hawk’s blond curls were baby soft as he ran his fingers through them and long enough to tug.

So he did. “How about my cock instead?”

“Oh, I do like a man that knows what he wants.” Those icy eyes flashed up at him. “You going to get it up again and fuck me like I need?”

Wow. Those eyes. And talk about knowing what you wanted. “Not to worry. I’m only offering you a taste, cowboy. We had an understanding, I think.”

“Only a taste, hmm? We’ll see about that. I’m pretty damn good at what I do.” Hawk cupped his balls, squeezing enough to bring him up on his toes.

Okay sure good whatever you want. He leaned into the touch. Something about this guy made him so ready to let go. But he had plans too.

“Humble. I’ve heard that about cowboys.”

“Meek. Mild. Salt of the earth.” Hawk understood how to unfasten another man’s slacks.

“Four for four.” He watched Hawk’s scarred fingers work, thinking they were surprisingly delicate for someone that spent most of their time with thousand-pound animals.

“You forgot hard as nails and twice as tough.”

He sucked in a breath as his cock and the air-conditioned room met. “Oh, now you’re talking about me.”

“Mmm, look at this fine bit of rope.” Hawk measured him, base to tip, then did it again, lips opening to take his tip in.

January sighed and reminded himself to be patient, but his fingers made a fist in the cowboy’s hair anyway, blond curls popping up between his knuckles. He knew without asking that Hawk would be more than ready for whatever he wanted to dish out, but he was still a gentleman despite all appearances at the moment.

First times and all, right?

Hawk cupped his balls, rolling them and making him gasp, even as Hawk’s mouth dropped down and down, the blistering suction surrounding his prick.

“Mmm.” All right, it seemed like Hawk did have something to brag about. January spread his feet wider and arched his hips forward, his eyes glued to that hungry mouth. Hawk went down on him like a Hoover, taking him in to the root and swallowing hard before moving back up to work his tip.

He closed his eyes to feel for a minute, enjoy Hawk’s heat. Hawk’s mouth was heaven, he could let the cowboy take him all the way like this for sure. Sometime, when he was with a lover he knew he’d see more than once, he would let himself indulge again. But he wanted Hawk. He wanted that strong, muscled body underneath him.

Soon. January shivered and groaned as Hawk swallowed, throat going tight around his prick. Maybe soon-ish.

In a minute.

First, he needed to enjoy what this cowboy could teach him about flying.

“Jesus.” He opened his eyes again. “I’m going to fuck you so hard you’ll still feel me when you win tomorrow night.”

“Mmhmm…” The hum sent vibrations all the way through to his bones. Fuck, Hawk was too good at this.

Too Goddamn good, and he’d had a little scotch. “Enough.” The word came out softer than he’d intended, raspy in his dry throat. He tried again, with more conviction. “I said a taste, cowboy. That’s enough.”

He tugged on Hawk’s hair, and his cock popped out of Hawk’s lips. They both groaned at the loss, with Hawk swaying on the mattress.

“That’s it.” He did appreciate a man that enjoyed giving head. “Crawl on up there and let me see that ass.” It was a thing of beauty in blue jeans, and Hawk obviously knew it. January was looking forward to what the denim had been hiding.

Hawk crawled up to the head of the bed, pretty little ass swaying back and forth to tease the fuck out of him.

“Mm-mm.” He reached across the bed to give one round cheek a love-tap, then slid out of his trousers. “Has anyone ever told you that you have a perfect ass?”

“Oh, flattery will so get you laid.” Hawk knelt up tall, ass cheeks clenched tight.

“Proud of it, are you?” He knelt right behind Hawk, coaxing Hawk’s knees open a little wider with his own, and slid his hands along the line of Hawk’s hips until they met, stretching wide again across those killer abs.

“You know it.” He could feel the way those muscles worked to keep them both upright.

He pressed close to Hawk’s back, letting his cock nestle into the warm cleft of that fine ass, and tasted a scarred shoulder with his tongue. That earned him a soft moan, and Hawk rocked back, ass teasing the hell out of him.

“There’s a little black bag next to your hat on the nightstand. Can you reach it?” So, he hadn’t made plans, but he was prepared anyway. Nothing put a damper on a spontaneous tryst like stopping in the hotel gift shop for a rubber, or worse, discovering it was closed.

“You got it.” Hawk settled deeper, thighs parted as he balanced and reached. Oh. Oh, that was the promise of pure sex. He slipped a hand through that inviting gap and cupped Hawk’s balls. They were silky and heavy and filled his whole hand.

Even better, they were shaved, smooth as silk, making all sorts of promises, each one better than another. Something told him waxing wasn’t cowboy standard issue. So intriguing, this man. A tangle of stereotypes and contradictions that Hawk simply owned, without shame or apology. It was sexy as hell.

“Tada!” Hawk straightened up, chuckling as he did. “That’s a right obliques workout. I’ll have to remember that.”

“I know I won’t forget it any time soon,” he teased and unzipped the little pouch pulling out what he needed. “That was a truly memorable view.”

Hawk put his hands on the wall behind the bed and arched, showing off shamelessly.

He swallowed hard. “Damn, Hawk.” January slicked a couple of fingers and touched the cool lube to the cowboy’s beautifully presented hole.

“Guy’s got to know how to get what he needs.”

“You don’t have to beg me, cowboy. I’m all in.” He slipped one finger inside, twisting it and circling the rim before adding a second.

Tight. He could only imagine that heat around his cock, working him. Milking him.

And Hawk was definitely focused and clear about what he needed. Jan was looking forward to blowing the cowboy’s mind a little. “I’m so ready for you.”

“Bring it on.” Hawk was so fierce, so in control of what he wanted.

January moved in close and lined up, wondering for a second if it would be rude to remind the man to breathe. “We’ll start easy.” He hooked one hand around Hawk’s hip and used his body weight to start to push inside, groaning as he met the natural resistance of Hawk’s body.

He heard the soft, shaky exhale, the first hint of any vulnerability at all. The truth of it was beautiful though and it made him shiver, the chance to own a piece of the cowboy’s swagger, even for an hour, giving him a thrill.

“I’ve got you.” He bent over Hawk’s back and rocked forward, sinking deeper into that incredibly tight heat. “Breathe. It’s good.”

“Yeah. Fucking A it is.” Hawk leaned toward him, hips moving in a steady rhythm that threatened to steal his breath.

He worked with Hawk, picking up the cowboy’s rhythm and taking it deeper, stronger. The way it built up on its own was so sweet, made him ache just right.

“Oh honey, like that. Just like that.”

That was better. That sounded like need.

“Yeah.” January focused on Hawk, his own need slowly building. “You’re going to lose your mind before I’m done with you.”

“Promises, promises.” Hawk gripped him, squeezing hard enough to steal his breath.

“Fuck,” he managed to bite out, followed by a deep grunt. Hawk was way too fucking together. He reached under and caught the cowboy’s thick prick in one hand, gripping it tight.

January felt that response, all around his cock, and the soft grunt that he got from Hawk proved that he had the cowboy’s attention.

“Hot.” He stroked hard several times before letting go and taking hold of Hawk’s narrow hips with both hands instead. He picked up the pace and drove in deep, moving beyond Hawk’s direction and taking them where he wanted to be.

Hawk reached down with one hand, pumping himself hard. With the couple of brain cells not busy, January managed to be impressed with Hawk’s balance.

That was the end of rational. He hauled back on Hawk’s hips. The sound of their bodies coming together over and over filled the room along with their rough breathing. He was determined to hold out for Hawk, but that sweet ass clung to him, hot and tight, and it took all his concentration.

“Come on. Harder. So fucking close.” The words weren’t a plea; they were a demand.

“Pushy fucking cowboy.”

He set his jaw, stared down the back of Hawk’s damp, blond head and thrust hard enough to send both of them rocking toward the headboard.

That was it. That earned him a cry, but nothing coherent at all.

So there.

January took a breath and focused on Hawk, dishing out more of the same until Hawk gave up trying to counter him. The cowboy melted around him, the heat increasing as Hawk gave in.

It was hard to resist the draw of Hawk’s shining skin and tired muscle; he could lick the man all over. And he might, later. At the moment his body was screaming to let go, and it was all he could do to keep up his nearly savage pace.

Hawk’s shout echoed as he shot, every pulse of pleasure echoing around his prick.

“Yes!” Oh sweet fuck yes. He fought through the tight grip around his hungry prick and took the last of what he needed—a handful of quick, shallow thrusts—and followed the cowboy over with a long, relieved groan.

Hawk slumped toward the wall, panting hard under him. It felt good, knowing he gave Hawk what he needed.

He shivered as he pulled away to ditch the condom, then he got a little of that taste he wanted, dropping kisses across the cowboy’s back. “Lie down with me. Stay a while.” He’d never kicked anyone out. People left and he got that, but he liked it if they stayed.

“Yeah? I can do that.” Hawk exhaled, settling down, turning toward him.

Score. He was happy to hold that body for a while. He extended an arm, inviting Hawk to move in closer. “You good? Okay?”

“Better than. I may have lost a few brain cells with that orgasm.”

He huffed, a weak laugh about all he could manage. “Well, they’re happily somewhere with mine. That was great.” He inhaled as Hawk settled in, more intrigued by the cowboy’s scent than he should be. He was truthfully more intrigued by Hawk in general than he should be.

Cowboy. Seriously, he’d had the orgasm of the year with a rodeo cowboy in Denver.

“Nap? Stay as long as you want. The suite comes with a killer breakfast.” He wanted Hawk to stay, and not because it was more food than he could possibly eat alone.

“Does it come with a round two?”

Oh. Heck, yeah. He wanted that too. “Are you kidding? That’s hours from now. We’ll be on three by then at least, don’t you think? Four?”

“Oh, I do like how you think.” Hawk snuggled right in with a moan.

He circled his arm over Hawk’s shoulders. “I’m told I snore a little,” he teased, talking through a huge yawn.

“I’ve been rooming with cowboys for fifteen years, honey. You could be the Latvian chain saw drill team and I could rest.”

He laughed, or thought he did. He tried anyway. And January fell asleep with an arm full of studly, irresistible cowboy.

 

Title: Flying Blind
Published by: Tygerseye Publishing, LLC
ASIN: B08CL2H4MR
ISBN13: 978-1-951011-34-5

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