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by William Neale
Category: Gay Fiction/Erotica
Description: When Cade and Mark said their vows it was for always and forever. But that was before Mark entered the Marine Corps and before Cade enrolled in college. Four years later, with Mark's impending discharge and Cade's graduation, they're seemingly ready to finally have a long-awaited life together. Their hot and passionate attraction to each other remains as strong as ever. But their long separation has changed both men. And even the strongest of marriages can be threatened by temptation, suspicion, and broken promises. Can their love survive? Or, will they discover that "always" does not always mean faithful?
eBook Publisher: MLR Press, LLC,
eBookwise Release Date: January 2012
2 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [295 KB]
Reading time: 186-260 min.
Cade Harris quickly yanked the Wrangler's steering wheel in a hard left swerve into the thankfully vacant far left lane. He'd barely missed the cherry red Mercedes that had cut into his path at seventy miles an hour. By the length of a goddamned bee's stinger! He slammed on his horn and pulled even with the SLK Roadster.
He was tempted to throw the idiot the finger. But that was a gesture Cade had always thought vulgar and juvenile. So he settled for giving the oblivious man talking on his cell phone another honk of his horn and a pissed-off glare. The guy glanced at Cade, offered an "I'm sorry" wave of his hand, and returned to his conversation.
Cade continued to hold the steering wheel in a death grip. "Let it go," he said into the rushing wind of the vehicle's open top. He had come within a fractal second of wiping out Mark's Jeep--not to mention himself. It had only deepened the conflicting elements of excitement, stress, thrill, anxiety, and even long-suffered horniness he felt on his way to pick up Mark at the Raleigh-Durham International Airport.
He exited off I-40, remembering the last time he'd been here had also been with Mark-- a year earlier. It had been the end of an all-too-brief three-week leave for his Marine husband, and Cade had been consumed with the unspoken terror that those final few moments alone with Mark might be the last he would ever have.
Mark had tried valiantly but in vain to console him, assuring Cade that his deployment to Afghanistan would be "no big deal" and that he would return home safely in just a few months. But his words were well-intentioned lies and they both knew it. It was a big deal. Mark was heading to a war zone where Americans were killed every day. And Cade didn't care who saw his six-foot-three fullback frame bawling as Mark gave him a final faux-cheerful wave after he cleared security.
Now, approaching the airport entrance, Cade had to remind himself to keep his emotions in check. On the one hand, he was thankful that Mark was returning home alive and healthy. His heart went out to the families of those whose husband, wife, son, or daughter had not. And he was proud of and grateful for Mark's service to his country.
But, as he had often lamented--and kept entirely to himself--few people understand the sacrifices made by the spouses of those who serve. In the four years since his and Mark's commitment ceremony--held only two days before Mark's departure for basic training--they had physically been together only for his thirty days of leave per year. Four months out of four very lonely years.
Sure, they'd been able to talk and e-mail often. Most military personnel even have access to teleconference providers like Skype. But, he thought, those were mighty poor substitutes for having his man in bed beside him every night. And Cade couldn't begin to imagine how difficult it must be for the wives and husbands who have children to raise and homes to manage largely by themselves, for extended periods of time.
But as he found the parking garage's entrance he told himself that now was not the time for a pity party. Nor, he thought guiltily, did he even have a right to feel sorry for himself. A lot of spouses and families had it a whole lot harder than him. He would do what he'd always done--suck it up and count the short days until Mark would be discharged and home for good.
The parking garage appeared to be full. Cade drove from one level up to the next and up and down long rows of filled spaces. Finally, on the top level, down at the end of a long row, he spotted one narrow space almost hidden between the back wall and a stairwell. Is this even a legal space? He checked, saw no restrictions posted on the wall or the pavement, and pulled in.
As he made his way toward the terminal's main concourse the nerves he'd been battling for the past couple of weeks made his legs feel wobbly and his stomach queasy. How had Mark changed? He knew it was not a matter of if he had changed but how much. Being in a war zone for a year would change any man or woman.
Cade couldn't go past the TSA security checkpoint so had to wait at the passenger exit along with several limo drivers holding small signs with the names of their passengers. There were at least a dozen other people anxiously peering through the glass barricade for the first glimpse of their loved ones returning from business trips and vacations. He smiled in particular at the little boy and girl who, standing side by side, held up an outstretched banner with crudely printed crayon letters reading "Welcome Home, Daddy!" He could only imagine the thrill their father would feel the instant he saw them.
Finally Cade spotted the Marine in the distance who stood at least a head taller than any other departing passenger. He wore the immediately recognizable MARPAT desert/summer utility uniform and his darkly tanned Italian skin highlighted Mark's classic square jaw and pronounced forehead. As Mark drew closer, Cade's first impression was that he now looked older and even more like a clone of his father.
Mark's head turned in all directions trying to spot Cade, who now waved both hands in the air. Finally, as he emerged past the exit checkpoint, Mark made eye contact and let out a loud whoop that made heads turn. He sent his duffle bag skidding across the terrazzo floor and sprinted at running back speed to Cade, almost knocking him down as they collided. Mark smothered Cade in his arms and kissed him repeatedly on the lips.
"Mark, people are staring," Cade gasped.
"Who gives a shit! I got my Cade back again."
"Oh, baby, I'm so happy you're finally home. I've missed you so bad!"
"I've missed you even more and--oh man--you smell so good! Makes me wanna strip you naked and take you right here in this airport." He squeezed Cade's ass cheeks, not caring that they now really were attracting a lot of passing attention.
"Then let's go find your luggage so we can get the hell out of here."
Mark pointed at the duffle he'd dropped. "That's my only bag. All my civvies are still home. But damn, I can't get over how good you look." Mark's broad smile beamed. "You've gotten even bigger. Just look at these huge guns!" He palmed one of the biceps that stretched the thin fabric of Cade's t-shirt and said low in Cade's ear, "I can't wait to lick and bite on these babies the way you love it."
Cade stroked the sexy two-day stubble of the man who had flown from halfway across the world. "You can lick and bite anything you want," he returned huskily. "We've got a lot of time to make up for."
Mark grinned. "Tell me about it. We're gonna fuck like bunnies the whole time I'm home."
Cade went to retrieve Mark's duffel and felt Mark pulling him back by the scruff of his t-shirt.
"Uh-uh, baby. I got that. I don't want nothing hiding that hot bod of yours. In fact, how about you walking a little in front of me so I can watch your bubble ass."
"Just a little horny for it, huh?"
"You have no idea."
"Oh yeah I do." Cade grinned and discreetly pointed to the erection tenting his shorts.
"Ditto, stud. Why do you think I'm carrying this bag in front of me?"