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Authors: Kate Paddington

Tags: #Romance/Gay, #Romance/Contemporary

Platonic

BOOK: Platonic
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© Kate Paddington, 2014

All Rights Reserved

ISBN 978-1-941530-07-8

Published by Interlude Press

http://interludepress.com

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, and places are either a product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to real persons, either living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

All trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Book design by Lex Huffman

Cover Art by Buckeyegrrl Design

Cover Art Photography ©Canstockphoto.com/gregorylee/sirastockid08

Contents

Prologue

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Epilogue

Acknowledgments

Questions for Discussion

PROLOGUE

“How did I get this lucky?”

Mark feels Daniel’s chuckle from where he’s resting his head against Daniel’s thigh. He doesn’t open his eyes; he is content to listen to Daniel’s breath and feel the last serious heat of the summer sun dapple through the old oak leaves.

When Daniel doesn’t say anything and the seconds stretch out, Mark continues. “I mean it,” he says, “I’m sixteen and I already know how happy I’m going to be for the rest of my life.”

He pauses because Daniel is pushing his fingers into his hair, scratching at his scalp, and it feels so nice he needs to savor it. Eyes still closed, Mark can imagine exactly the way Daniel is looking down at him: dizzyingly in love, carefree and amused. “We’ll live in New York, and you’ll be the talk of the town with your art and I’ll get to spend all my years loving you,” he says.

Mark sighs happily, overwhelmingly content despite the realities of school starting in a week: grades and extracurricular activities and his boyfriend being immersed in his senior year, embroiled in finals and planning for art school in New York. Mark will have to wait an extra year to be a senior and get to New York, but that’s okay. They will have the rest of their lives together.

When Daniel speaks, he’s quiet but not shy. They’ve talked about this all through the summer. “When do you want to have kids?”

Content to have his hair played with, Mark still doesn’t open his eyes. “As soon as we can, I think.”

Daniel hums his agreement, and Mark feels him lean back on one hand. Minutes pass and then he says, “But we need money, right? So, after school. Start mid-twenties. Three of them by the time we’re thirty.”

They’ve already discussed names and surrogacy. Daniel wants twins and Mark wants three children in quick succession. They know they’re probably still too young to be sure of any of it, but they don’t care because one day they will be old enough, and they’re sure of that.

“Early twenties,” Daniel says.

Now Mark does open his eyes, the pupils contracting so the green shines brightly as he stares up; Daniel’s fingers are gentle and easy against his temple before playfully tugging at a twisted wave of hair.

Daniel smiles down at him and says quietly, “I can’t wait to start a family with you, is all.”

“Me either.”

They kiss, long and easy under the oak tree, until Daniel has pins and needles in his legs and the root sticking into Mark’s back demands he move. Mark slips further into the sunlight and onto his side, rests his head against his arm and lays it against Daniel’s outstretched calf. He smiles up at Daniel, who contracts and then relaxes his thigh to get the blood moving again.

“Stay there,” Daniel tells him, twisting to the side and reaching for the brown leather-bound sketchbook that goes everywhere with him. “I’m gonna draw you.”

Mark beams up at him.

CHAPTER 1

“I don’t think that it deserved a B.” Mark Savoy adjusts his laptop bag over his shoulder and crosses his arms. They’ve been debating the grade he’s been given for his essay for twenty minutes.

Patrick Hunt, his professor, leans back in his chair and crosses his arms in a similar fashion. “Well, with a precisely formulated argument like that I am sure you’re going to make a fantastic lawyer.”

“What did I need to do to get an A?”

“If I tell you that, you’ll never learn.”

Mark scowls and rocks forward a little onto the balls of his feet. “That would be exactly how I
could
learn. If there was a valid reason.”

They’re in the second floor office, where various T.A.s keep regular hours and Patrick, a part-time adjunct professor, keeps a desk since he hasn’t yet managed to wrangle a proper office. It’s after nine and no one else is around; Patrick is only here because Mark emailed him specifically. As displeased as he is with the grade given to the essay he holds in his hands, Mark is always thankful for the amount of time Patrick gives him.

“I’m not going to change your grade because you don’t like it.”

“Then change it because it’s not a B-grade paper. I bet Samantha got an A, and God knows her essay would have been full of arguments flimsier than… than…” he’s got nothing. “Fuck.” He’s angry and he hates that he’s angry; he’s so used to keeping his temper under control, staying cool under pressure.

Patrick laughs and it only makes Mark madder. It’ll be his first B of the year.

“You’re very cute when you’re angry,” Patrick tells him. “I’m still not changing the grade, but I thought you should know that.”

Mark’s jaw drops and he stands there with his mouth hanging open. Patrick has flirted with him before but never so overtly, and it’s shocking that he does it here, now, when they’re arguing. Ordinarily, Mark likes Patrick; he’s funny and witty and knows more about criminal law than most of the tenured professors. But a moment ago Mark was very, very angry. Now he’s just dumbstruck.

“Come here,” Patrick says, and rolls his chair back from the desk to make space.

Mark goes without thinking too hard about it, eyes flitting from Patrick’s mouth to the splay of him in his chair, spread legs, strong thighs, the bulge of his biceps and pecs through his shirt. Then back to his eyes, dark, playful and heated, and suddenly Mark is standing there, right in front of him.

“Nothing is going to change this grade, but I appreciate that you cared enough to try. You are a fantastic student and, in general, an interesting person. That I would like to get to know a bit better.”

Patrick slides a hand up over Mark’s stomach, letting the touch linger there with intent, giving Mark ample time to say no or back away. He doesn’t, though, and Patrick grasps the fabric of his shirt and pulls him down.

The laptop bag slips from Mark’s arm, clunking to the floor, and he balances with his hands on the armrests of the chair. Patrick kisses him once in a whisper of lips on lips, a gentle slide that Mark wouldn’t even believe except he’s still got his eyes open and he can see how close Patrick is to him, can smell his cologne and the sweat and fatigue of a long day underneath it.

Patrick arches and Mark’s lips open in a sigh; now Patrick’s kiss is open and hot, his tongue licking over the jut of Mark’s bottom lip, now at the seam, now inside. Mark gasps into it, tasting coffee on Patrick’s lips and sucking the essence from his tongue. Mark’s head spins but he likes Patrick too much to hesitate, and the warmth of some new potential bubbles to life inside him.

He hasn’t had a boyfriend in over a year, hasn’t had sex in just as long, and Patrick is… kind of amazing. Even if Mark is still going to adamantly contest his grade.

***

When Patrick grabs Mark’s hand and runs with him to the parking lot, Mark figures it will be a quick drive to one of the apartment blocks around campus. As soon as they’re in Patrick’s car, Mark lets his mind skip ahead to the play of Patrick’s skin under his mouth, what Patrick’s cock will look like in his hands. Then they get on the freeway and Mark groans his discontent, suddenly wondering just how far they have to go. He shifts in his seat eagerly and reaches over the console to palm Patrick’s dick through his pants because he’s so turned on, so impatient, he can’t wait. They kissed too long in the office and only stopped because of the unmistakable sound of footsteps in the corridor.

Patrick is his professor; they should absolutely not be doing this and the threat of being caught in a university office should have been ample disincentive to continue. But, much to Mark’s delight, when the footsteps had receded and he’d pressed his hand to Patrick’s crotch, Mark had found him already half-hard in his dress pants and Patrick had groaned, given him a sharp and determined look and licked his way back inside his mouth. So they are absolutely doing this.

Mark works the ball of his palm a little harder, creating rough friction as his fingers search out the shape of Patrick’s dick through his pants as Patrick’s legs spread a little bit wider. Mark gets something just right, because Patrick arches and the car swerves. Swearing under his breath, Patrick bats Mark’s hand away and snarks “Fuck off,” in a way that might be joking or might be serious; Mark can’t quite tell.

It’s late on a Wednesday night and the road is almost empty, so Patrick pushes up to ninety miles an hour and doesn’t say anything when Mark squirms even closer, pressing his mouth to Patrick’s neck.

Eventually, they pull into an apartment complex closer to San Jose than to campus. The car is put into park before it’s quite stopped moving, and then there’s one jolting kiss, rough and hot across the console. Patrick laughs loudly as he climbs out of the car, and Mark scrambles to keep up with him. They move quickly through the maze of small apartment blocks, up two dark flights of stairs, and then Patrick’s got his keys out and the door open and seconds later Mark’s inside his apartment, pinned against the front door, being kissed in a way he doesn’t think he’s ever been kissed.

Patrick is the first to pull back, one hand splayed over Mark’s cheek, the other quickly flicking open the button of Mark’s jeans, yanking down his fly and snaking inside. He palms Mark’s dick as he says, “Just to reiterate: This isn’t going to change your grade.” Then he kisses him again and manages to get his fingers under the waistband of Mark’s briefs and around the base of his cock.

Mark’s breath hitches as Patrick licks into his mouth again and again, pushing him back harder against the door. It takes him several seconds to process what he’s being accused of and then he huffs and nips harshly at Patrick’s lips, chasing his mouth to kiss him, his hands gripping at the muscles of Patrick’s back. “This is so not about that.”

“Because it won’t.”

Mark kisses him harder and bites along the line of his jaw and down his neck, pulling him in while Patrick works his cock as best he can in the confines of his pants. The lights suddenly flicker on, flashing red through his closed eyelids and startling him long enough for Patrick to get his other hand up and under Mark’s shirt and yank it over his head.

“And it’s not a rough fuck as payback?” Patrick asks, pulling back to look Mark over.

Mark hasn’t been naked in front of someone for a long time, and law school has given him less time than he would like to pay attention to his body. He knows there are faint tan lines across his biceps and in a V down to the center of his chest, shifting from the paleness of his torso to a gradient of slight color down his arms and up his neck. There’s a scatter of coarse, dark hair on his chest that he sometimes used to shave, and he can feel how hard his nipples are. Mark glances down his body to where Patrick’s hand obscures the view.

“God, no,” Mark says.

“This I can work with,” Patrick says, more to himself than to Mark. He lets go of Mark’s cock and places both hands against the flat expanse of Mark’s chest.

BOOK: Platonic
12.2Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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