...The house was big, three floors at least and most likely a basement as well. There was enough of a yard in the front that Carver was willing to bet there was a carriage house in the back. Even considering the lower housing values in the area due to thirty years as a slum lord heaven, this place was well outside the range of a cop’s salary. Carver began to think his detective skills had failed him.
No point in worrying about that now. He climbed out of his car and crossed the street. Time for the door-to-door approach.
Carver rang the bell and waited. He should probably work on a cover story. Really, though, what was the point?
He was debating the merits of ringing again when the noise of locks being undone came from the other side. A moment later, the door opened, revealing a stony-faced David Logan.
“Done all right for ourselves, haven’t we?” Carver said by way of greeting.
David’s eyes narrowed. “You really have no concept of lines, do you, Eliot?”
“You stood me up tonight.”
Obviously exhausted, David rubbed his face. “I’m sorry. I meant to tell you and it slipped my mind.”
“You always sit around in a dark house?”
“Only when I’m asleep.”
“Already? It’s only…” Carver looked at his watch for the first time all night. “Shit. Eleven-forty-five. Sorry.”
“No, you aren’t. Are we done? I’d like to go back to sleep.”
He should apologize and go home. Morning was going to come too soon as it was. But he had come all this way and never just walked away. “Why?”
“Why did you bail on me tonight?” Christ, he sounded like a jilted girlfriend.
“I had things to do. Contrary to popular belief, my job isn’t my life.”
“David, if you had a life, you wouldn’t have been in bed already.”
“Nice life you’ve got, Carver, stalking co-workers.”
“I dropped by to find out why you stood me up. That’s not stalking.”
“Did you track me down through the phone book?”
“Go home, Carver. Get some sleep like a sane person.” He started to close the door.
Carver didn’t catch it until it was almost too late. “You’re a chicken shit. That’s why, isn’t it?”
“Carver, not everything I do is about you.”
“No?” He stepped up on the doorsill, taking a chance by curling his hand around the back of David’s neck. “Tell me you don’t want this.”
Then he took another chance.
It was a slow kiss, more exploratory than demanding, and Carver felt it right down to the bottom of his boots, even if David didn’t. David’s mouth was warm and soft from sleep, malleable under Carver’s mobile kiss. David’s hands brushed up Carver’s chest in an intimacy that nearly had Carver on his knees, then came to rest on his shoulders. He didn’t surrender, but he didn’t pull away, which was enough for Carver.
So Carver pressed his advantage, deepening the kiss and moving closer. David’s flannel sleep pants concealed nothing. David couldn’t deny this if he wanted to.
“Invite me in,” Carver murmured against David’s lips.
“No.” But he made no move to get away.
“Goddamn it, David, you want this as much as I do. Don’t be such a fucking martyr and ask me in.”
“What if I do?” His mouth never moved away from Carver’s, each word a caress in itself. “What if I let you into my house, and we fuck like animals all night? Then what?”
Carver groaned at the thought. “Jesus, who cares? Let me in!”
David’s mouth opened, and suddenly Carver was lost in a surge of desire David’s demanding, commanding, overwhelming kiss inspired. When David pulled away, Carver couldn’t think.
“I care. Goodnight, Detective.” It took only a slight shove to trip Carver off the doorsill and shut the door in his face.
He stood there, dumbstruck and staring at the door as it sunk it what had just happened...