...“Let’s walk on the pier,” Rupert suggested when Leander had finished his sketch. “At least it’s sheltered.”
“All right. We were lucky to have such fine weather today. It seems like it always rains on Sundays.”
Rupert laughed as Leander closed his sketchbook and slipped his pencil into his pocket. He followed Rupert to the entrance of the pier, where he paid their toll. It was warmer on the pier, thanks to the windscreen. He moved closer and brushed his arm against Rupert’s, just for a second. He envied the men and women who strolled arm-in-arm along the pier, exchanging fond glances, unaware of how it felt to be unable to do so.
“We should run away,” he said.
Rupert chuckled. “Where do you propose we go?”
Leander frowned. “I don’t know. A tropical island far from civilization?”
Rupert’s brows angled upward. “And do what? Live on fish and coconuts?”
“Why not? What’s stopping us?”
Rupert shook his head. “You spin a nice fantasy, but truth is, we’d both be bored out of our minds in a week. No theater, no books, no culture.”
“Of course,” Leander agreed, though he doubted he’d grow bored so fast. Not as long as he had Rupert and his sketchbook. He turned away and fought down his disappointment. He was in danger of falling in love with Rupert, but the feeling didn’t appear to be reciprocated.
* * *
Just before sunset, they wandered along the beach toward the old chain pier. Rupert shivered from the cold wind off the ocean. They had stopped earlier to book a hotel room, and he was ready to return, but Leander seemed reluctant to leave the beach. Still, Rupert was glad they’d come. The excursion had meant a lot to his young companion. He’d filled several pages in his sketchbook and talked of ideas for new paintings. Nature might be uncomfortable at times, but it was beautiful and inspiring.
By the time they reached the old pier, they were the only ones left on this part of the beach. The sunset had turned the sky shades of red and orange, and the timbers of the decrepit structure were silhouetted in black against the brilliant colors. “What a painting that would make.”
“I was thinking the same thing,” Leander said. “I’ll get to work on it when we return to London.”
“Too bad you left your sketchbook at the hotel.”
Leander turned to face him. “It doesn’t matter. I won’t forget.”
“How can you be sure?”
Leander smiled. “I have an excellent memory. Once I’ve seen something, I can draw it down to the smallest detail.”
“Really? I had no idea.”
Leander shrugged modestly. “I’ve always been able to do that.”
“No wonder you’re such a talented artist.”
Leander grabbed his arm and steered him into the shadows under the pier. “That’s not all I’m talented at,” he whispered before grabbing Rupert’s head and pressing a kiss on his lips.
Rupert opened his mouth to protest, and Leander slid his tongue inside, tasting and exploring. Rupert groaned and kissed him back. This was madness, dangerous madness, but he was unable to resist. He wrapped his arms around Leander’s waist and pulled him closer.
“We need to stop,” Rupert gasped between kisses.
“Shut up,” Leander said before taking his mouth again.
He let one hand slide down Rupert’s torso to his waist. Before Rupert knew it, Leander was expertly unbuttoning his trousers. He tried to pull back, but Leander tightened his grip on Rupert’s neck.
Rupert’s protests were silenced by Leander’s tongue in his mouth. Rupert knew all he had to do was push the smaller man away, but his mouth and hands felt too good. For the next few minutes, he forgot how to think, how to talk, as Leander’s hand stroked and teased his prick.
“Are you going to come?”
“Yes,” Rupert groaned.
Leander fell to his knees, took Rupert’s cock in his hands and drew the tip into his mouth...