Note this is an unedited version since the book is currently a WIP
Joe played with Will’s hair as he watched him sleep. The smell and sound of the surf relaxed him. Nice of Gavin to loan the guest house. Even nicer it was on the beach. But you couldn’t separate Gavin from the ocean or his surf board. He should know. It was a wonder Gavin didn’t carry the board into the office. He kissed Will.
Will’s eyelashes fluttered as his eyes opened. “Hey.”
“Hey too.” Joe smiled then kissed him again.
Wrapping his arms around Joe’s neck, Will closed his eyes again, “So… you want to stay in and screw our brains out or do something?”
“I sort of vote for the screwing our brains out.”
“I thought we did that last night.”
“I still have some brains left.”
Laughing, Joe pulled the bed stand drawer open. He rolled back. “Well, I was thinking there might be something else you would like to do today.”
“Can’t think of anything better. Is that lube by any chance?”
“Ouch. That’s going to hurt you.”
“Who said I was going to be the bottom.”
“I want lube.”
“Nah. I think it will fit.”
Will shook his head.
Joe opened the box held in his hand. “Marry me?”
With a stunned expression, Will sat up. “What?”
“Will you marry me?” He held out the box. A black ring with a narrow rose gold band in the center sat beside a brush silver one with a matching rose gold band. Will reached out tentatively picking up the black ring.
“Yep. Got the right one.”
“You knew I was looking at that?”
“You didn’t clear your browser history; and you left it open the one time. I mean you kept going back to look at those wedding bands. You said you didn’t want anything expensive. I wanted something that would take a pounding and the tungsten will. Besides, they look good. I love the feel; they are heavy enough to remind us that we’re married.”
Will didn’t say anything as he stared at the ring.
“I mean if you don’t like them we can…”
“They are perfect… If you like them? They aren’t just for me.”
“I love them.”
Will leaned over and brushed his lips. “And I love you.”
“Before we get sidetracked by sex, I was thinking we’d get married. I checked. We show up and get our license. I figured here was as good of place as any and we can get a confidential license. No one else will know except our witnesses. Gavin and a couple of his deputies are willing.”
“That’s what you had your heads together about at the barbecue?”
“Yeah.” Joe laid down on the pillow. “You’ve been putting it off because of…” He trailed off.
“I’m not sure he’s dead. And if he isn’t, I don’t want to risk what he’d do if you and I were married.”
“There was a body.”
“And so burned there was no way to identify it. Christopher might still be alive. I’ve been having these dreams about him. He’s alive. I know it.” Will laid down beside him and cuddled into his side. “I won’t risk you.”
“You don’t have to. No one else can see the records if it is confidential. No one will know unless we tell them. Gavin and the guys will keep quiet.” He snuggled closer. “We get the license and get married. Gavin will call the guys and they will meet us there.”
“Okay.” Will kissed Joe’s shoulder.
“Okay? Just okay?”
“Yes, Joseph Albright, I will marry you. But you realize I don’t have a thing to wear?”
“Well, I figured we would wear our swimsuits.”
“No. I packed our suits.”
“You were that sure?”
“Yeah. I was that sure.” His eyes closed, Joe grinned. He slid his hand down Will’s back to grasp his ass.
“Hey. I thought you said no sex today.”
“Hell no. I said no fucking our brains out until we got married. Make an honest man of me. We have dependents you know.”
“Fuck that. That llama is not my dependent. He wants to eat me for supper. Barbecued.” Will rolled away from him and sat up. “Get up. The sooner we get married the sooner we can do mindless sex.”
Joe joined him on the edge of the bed. “Works for me. I get to be top.” He reached across Will and grabbed the cell phone.
Joe held up one finger. “Hey, Gavin? He said yes. About half an hour.”
Will held up a finger.
“Okay, we’ll be over in an hour. No, you perv, we aren’t going to fuck first.” Laying the phone down he pulled Will into his arms and back on the bed.
“You said no fucking.”
“I didn’t say no groping.”
Will kissed him. “So get up and let’s get a shower and get dressed. I want to know what life’s like as a married man.”
“Probably the same as not being married. But with less fucking.”
Will whacked him.
“See. It’s starting already.”
“Get up. May I remind you I was the one who wanted to stay in bed and screw?” He shot out of bed and into the bathroom, “This was your choice.”
“Yeah. You were and yep, it was.” Joe padded after him. “I’m marrying you today, come hell or high water William Danner. I don’t care if Christopher Chamberlain is our best man.”
“Where the fuck are we?” Joe stared at the house they pulled up to. “This doesn’t look like the courthouse.”
“Nope.” Gavin turned in the seat. “I asked a friend of mine, retired Judge, to do the honors. More quiet and more private. I figured you would approve.”
“That works. Thank you, Gavin.” Will opened the door and slipped out. Joe joined him.
A handsome curly haired man came down the driveway. He smiled at them, his eyes crinkling on the side. “Hey. Come on in. The judge is getting dressed. He’s planning on having it on the beach if you don’t mind?”
“That’s fine.” Will didn’t miss the looks exchanged by Gavin and the man. He will bet that was who Gavin approached about the wedding.
“Come on in. I’ll make us some drinks. Oh, I’m Mark.” Gavin walked beside him to the house.
Lowering his voice, Will said, “So, you think they are an item?”
“Huh?” Joe looked puzzled.
“Gavin and Mark.”
“I don’t know.” Joe stared at the backs of the two men. “I hope so. He deserves it.”
No question that Joe was talking about his former lover. Will felt a niggling touch of jealousy he didn’t know he had lift. Shit. Well… hell. Gavin was beautiful. All that wild long Golden brown hair. Lashes that went on for miles framing those sky-blue eyes. And tall… all 6 foot 7 inches of him. Couldn’t blame Mac for walking into the pool staring at the man. And Gavin and Joe made a beautiful picture together. Yeah, it was long past before he had ever met Joe but still… He sighed.
“You okay?” Joe stopped walking.
“Yeah. Just realizing what’s happening I guess. And such a beautiful setting.” Will nodded at the beach and ocean. “It’s perfect. I couldn’t have planned better.”
“The only thing that would make it more perfect is if Tut was our best man.”
“Right. Sure. And Mac was the Maid of Honor.”
Joe slipped his hand into Will’s and squeezed it. “Come on. Let’s get that drink offered.”
“Yeah. I could use it.” Will squeezed in return. He pulled Joe forward. “Come on, husband to be.”
They stepped inside the house. The entire wall facing the ocean was glass. A large oak floating staircase lead up to the upper level balcony and the second floor.
Joe scanned it. “Wow. This beats your place.”
“Wow. You’re right. But then it would be… well… Maybe not…” Giving a slow study of the house. “You know we could…”
“No. I’m happy with both houses just as they are.”
“Bossy. And we aren’t even married yet.” Will leaned in and kissed him. “It wasn’t like I was suggesting eating the llama.”
“No. Tut is not negotiable.” They joined Gavin, Mark and the deputies by the bar.
“Here.” Gavin handed Joe a drink. “And what will you have Will?”
“Vodka and orange juice?”
“Coming right up.” Mark pulled a carton out of the refrigerator behind the bar.
“I’ll have a gin and tonic.”
They turned toward the voice. A tall handsome man, dark brown hair graying at the temples, was coming down the staircase. Hum… maybe it wasn’t Gavin and Mark…
Stopping next to Will and Joe, he extended his hand and smiled at Will. “I’m Milton. I’ll be doing the ceremony today. Glad I could help.”
“Thank you so much.” Will shook it then stood aside for Joe.
“I second that. It’s beautiful here.”
Milton nodded as he grinned. “Let me get my drink and we’ll look outside. You can tell me if you want beach or balcony or patio. My house is your wedding castle.”
Will turned to the windows again. “It doesn’t matter as long as we get married.”
“Yep.” Joe joined him at the window, wrapped his arm around Will’s waist and kissed his ear. “Mine. All mine.”
“You knew anyway.” Will bumped against him.
“But now I’ll have the paperwork to prove it.”
“It’s come a long way hasn’t it?”
“I know. There is always the fear it could come undone in a heartbeat. If it ever does, we are moving to a country that allows marriage between us.”
“Can I take Tut?”
“He’s got a harem of females, why does he want to marry another man. Although I will admit, he’s been eyeing up your new bull.”
“Come on out. We’ll finish our drinks and then do the wedding. It’s too nice of a day to stay inside.” Milton pushed a button, and the window slid open.
Damn, it was a door. He glanced at Joe. “Hey. I love you.”
“Hey, I love you back.” A smile broke as he led Will out the door.. “Now Let’s decide where we get married. I think beach.”
Sunset made the sky flame as they took positions on the beach. The Judge’s deep voice said the words to something Will never dreamed he would do. Gavin handed them each their rings. And then, married. Just like that. So easy and such a long trail. Marry the man you love. Not so easy when you were another man until now.
As they walked into the house, Will saw the dinner table set for a meal and a small Wedding cake on the buffet. He looked at the Judge.
“Well, you can’t have a wedding without a meal.” Milton grinned. “Come on, let’s eat.”
Will took his seat. Several towers of metal sat on the table. Each had three plates full of seafood. “This looks fantastic.”
“I pulled strings with Island Prime. These are their seafood towers. So how do you want your steaks cooked?” Milton waved over a waiter. “They were also nice enough to send staff.”
“Rare. And cake, too?”
“It’s rare I get to break my diet these days. It’s a good excuse so why not?”
“We can never thank you enough.” Joe piled oysters on Will’s plate. Will elbowed him “Right, Joe?”
Milton glanced at Joe’s loaded plate. “From the looks of his plate, I already knew that. You need to catch up. Here try their mussels. They make this fantastic white wine sauce.”
They finished with drinks on the patio. Standing by the railing, Will gazed out to sea.
“What’s wrong?” Joe lounged against the railing.
“I hear it is vastly overrated.”
“So what’s wrong?”
“That we can get married.”
“Huh?” Joe cocked his head.
“We can get married but so many others over so many centuries couldn’t. Hell, they could hang you for loving someone.” He reached out and stroke Joe’s face. “Hell, when Mac and I were together, we couldn’t get married. It wasn’t fair.”
Joe caught his hand and kissed it. “No, it wasn’t but I’ll admit, I’m mighty glad you didn’t marry Mac.” And he pulled Will in for a kiss. They turned back to watch the moonlight on the sea.
“Ahem.” Gavin strolled up to them. “Hey, George will drive you home. You have full run of everything. I will stay over here.”
“We don’t want to put you out.” Joe protested until Will kicked his foot under the table. He shot a puzzled glance at Will.
“No problem.” Gavin wandered off.
“Why did you do that?”
“Because he’s staying with Mark. Or did you miss their interactions all day?”
“Yeah, oh.” Will shook his head. “You know when Tut’s frisky but you can’t tell when your friend is?”
“You can’t miss when Tut’s frisky. He chases Mac.”
“Well, if he stopped wearing that damn cologne, Tut would lose interest.”
“Nah. I like calling him llama bait. Come on. Let’s thank everyone and go back to the beach house. I got plans.”
“Build a campfire and have a sing along?”
“Something like that.” Arms around Will’s shoulders, they went back in the house.
When they got to the guest house, Joe locked the door. Waggling his eyebrows, he stalked Will. “Now about that fire and the sing along.”
Picking Will up and throwing him over his shoulder, Joe said, “I’ll start a fire and you’ll sing along.” He slapped Will’s butt, entered the bedroom door then kicked it shut.