I reflected on the evening as I drove back from my parents’ house in the rain. Instead of staying at home where I could have been worrying over Marcus, I’d been guilted into waking up early to attend a Friday night family dinner, which had turned into family dinner, board game, and movie night. My parents were great, of course, and Brandon had made serious strides toward repairing the damage done by his issues over the previous few years, but I would have preferred to make sure my boyfriend remained breathing and in one piece.

Unfortunately said boyfriend was still recovering from the accident his messed-up sister had caused, and he agreed that he probably couldn’t handle a car trip just yet. Not only did he tire easily, but he was still nervous about the idea of getting into a moving vehicle. He was getting better about it, but it still made him jumpy, and he didn’t need that while he was recovering. On the plus side, he hadn’t spent the evening alone. Jordan adored Marcus in that same brotherly way he adored me, and he’d said they were going to catch up on movies I wouldn’t watch.

Of course, Jordan had probably left for work already, given that it was officially Saturday and nearly one in the morning. And Marcus was probably curled up in bed, sleeping off the painkillers he was still taking. That was okay. I’d be able to join Marcus in bed and enjoy the warmth, if nothing else. The man was like an octopus, even asleep, and he invariably latched onto me, even as he snored.

When I pulled into the driveway, I was grateful they’d left the lights on. I had to run (well, okay, hobble) for the front door in the pouring rain. When I hurried inside and pulled off my soaked hoodie, I discovered Marcus was neither in bed nor asleep. He was sitting on the couch, watching a movie with a blanket wrapped around him. He had a jar of what looked like chocolate sauce in one hand and was licking an oozing mass of the stuff off of his free index finger.

Dear. Fucking. God. All I could do was stare.

“Welcome home, Ollie,” he said, not looking away from the television.

I tried to gather some semblance of intelligence. All blood had left my brain. “Chocolate sauce at this hour?” I asked, trying to sound more amused than turned on. I’m not sure how well I did with that, but I let it go. I dropped my keys on the coffee table and leaned in to kiss Marcus’s sticky mouth.

“It was cold and I wanted chocolate, so I warmed it up.” Marcus shrugged and gave me another swift peck on the lips. “Viki apparently made it yesterday. She gave it to me before she and Jordan went to her place.”

That was one silver lining of the whole thing with his sister. As Marcus recovered from his ordeal–with me hovering over him–Jordan had been getting to know the adorable yoga instructor he met outside the hospital. It turned out she was single. She had a wicked sense of humor and a sweet tooth rivaling Marcus’s that had driven her to learn to make some insanely delicious, sugary treats. I figured, with her sweet tooth, it was a good thing she was a yoga instructor. She was as attracted to Jordan as he was to her when they met, and I had a feeling she could end up being around on a permanent basis. But it was early days yet.

It also turned out she loved to feed us and kept my boyfriend stocked with enough sugary stuff for an army. That, in itself, would have been enough to make me love her, because anyone who made Marcus happy was awesome in my book.

I frowned. “Wait, Jordan left you by yourself all evening? Why wasn’t he here with you?”

Marcus snorted. He stuck his finger in the jar and brought his finger to his lips. I watched him lick the finger clean and found myself distracted again. “Because I’m fine. I just get tired quicker than usual, and I’m still a little bruised. There’s no need for him to babysit me. How was your visit?”

He licked his finger again, and my eyes were focused firmly on the sight of his tongue moving slowly up his long, slender digit. When I realized I’d lost track of the conversation, I gave myself a shake. “What did you say?”

“Your visit,” Marcus repeated. “How was it?”

I let out a huff and settled onto the couch next to him. “Same old story. Brandon was awkward and said something he shouldn’t have, and I told him to go perform improbable carnal acts upon himself because, if I’d told him to go fuck himself, Mom would have been upset. He laughed, though. So, we’re okay. Mom reminded me again that gay marriage is legal, at which point I reminded her, for what was probably the thousandth time, that we’d get around to it when we were both ready. Dad told me to pass on an invitation for you to go fishing with him weekend after next, if you were up to it. And I told him you’d say yes, but that I’d have you call him.”

“I love your family,” Marcus said. He smiled as he used his finger to stir the contents of the jar. “Brandon’s coming along nicely, and your parents are awesome.” He pulled his finger from the chocolate and held it out to offer me a taste. “Want some?”

Without thinking, I leaned in and started to suck on Marcus’s finger. It earned me a groan, and I stopped abruptly. I’d been too scared of hurting him in the last couple of weeks to even think about sex, and I didn’t want to be a tease. Soon, but not now. The worst of the bruises hadn’t healed yet. “So what did Jordan and Viki have planned for tonight?”

“Horror movie marathon before he had to leave for work,” Marcus said, and leaned against me. He smelled of chocolate and that citrus body wash we use. It was a fantastic smell. “Since we all know how well I handle horror movies, and because I get tired of having to deal with them making out in front of me, I told them to do it at Viki’s place.”

“So they really did leave you alone all evening?” I asked. My frown made my forehead crease.

“It’s fine,” Marcus reassured me. “I was just watching TV, and they would have been bored to tears trying to behave. I told them to go have fun.”

I sighed but let it go, opting to slide an arm behind Marcus so we could get in a better position to cuddle. “I should have stayed home. I worried about you while I was gone.”

“You needed to visit your parents,” Marcus chastised. “But maybe I should have braved the car ride. If I started to droop while I was there, your mom would have just sent me to your old room for a nap. Hell, she probably would have sent you with me.”

“Probably,” I chuckled and pressed my lips against his temple. “But you didn’t need to deal with the stress of the drive, on top of everything else. We’ll go visit them together next time. For now, though, let’s get you to bed. You look exhausted.” Before he could protest, I pluck the jar from his hand and started to get up.

“I wasn’t done with that,” he groused, glaring at me. It probably would have been more effective if his lower lip hadn’t protruded in a pout. Or maybe it wouldn’t have. Being adorable tends to work on me better than being fierce.

“You’re still healing,” I reminded him and nipped at his sexy-as-hell lower lip. “You need sleep, not a stomach full of sugar. You never need a stomach full of sugar, come to think of it, but it really can’t be good for you right now.”

“My stomach was, and continues to be, fine,” he asserted. “I had a concussion, some bruising, and a need to sleep a lot.”

“You nearly cracked your skull open on the steering wheel, you poked holes in a vital organ, and you only made it through the first week because of the Vicodin they prescribed you.”

“Fine,” Marcus said. He turned the word into a long-suffering sigh. “One more bite?”

As if I could ever really say no to him. “One more,” I agreed. “But then you ought to get some sleep.”

“Give me the jar back, then.”

“Oh, hell no,” I said, laughing. “I know better than that. If I do that, I’ll never get it away from you again.” I stuck my finger in the open jar and offered it to Marcus once it was thoroughly coated. “Here.”

My devious little boyfriend looked victorious and started sucking on my finger. I probably should have given the idea a bit more thought before letting Marcus’s mouth anywhere near any part of my body.

. With no physical intimacy beyond cuddling over the last couple of weeks, it took no time at all for my cock to throb a hello. The fact that Marcus was still technically recovering was completely forgotten.

Marcus let go of my finger and leaned in to nuzzle my ear. His breath, heavy with the scent of chocolate, tickled my skin and made me shiver in the best way possible. “Are you sure you wouldn’t like me to have just a little more, Ollie?”

He wasn’t talking about chocolate, and I was well aware of it. I turned my head, licked his lips and tasted the chocolate he’d been enjoying. “We shouldn’t,” I murmured.

“We should,” Marcus corrected. He opened his mouth to me so our tongues could meet. “We so should.”

“I want to taste.” The words came out as something between a whimper and a whine, but I didn’t care. All I knew was that Marcus was driving me insane and I needed him. I needed to see that he was whole and healthy and there. I could have lost him.

As if he read the change in my mood, he wrapped his arms tightly around me and sighed happily into my ear. “My Ollie,” he whispered, then he leaned back, dragged his shirt over his head, and dropped it to the floor. He grabbed the almost-forgotten jar from my hand before I could stop him. He leaned back and carefully trickled a thin trail of chocolate down his chest and stomach, careful to avoid the places they’d cut him open to get at his lung. “Ask and you shall receive.”

I’d find out later that the jar somehow made it to the coffee table—upright and in one piece—but at the time, neither of us was paying attention. I was too busy running my tongue against the feast of chocolate-streaked skin in front of me.

“No, wait.”

I stopped and gave Marcus a look that probably screamed disbelief. “You seriously want me to stop now?” And there I’d been worried I was the cocktease.

But Marcus merely rolled his eyes at me and pulled at the hem of my shirt. “Lose the shirt, or I’ll be trying to get chocolate sauce out of your laundry for days.”

I choked back a laugh as I yanked my shirt off and let it unceremoniously join his on the floor. “Fair enough. Can I get back to what I was doing now?”

He didn’t speak, but the rakish grin on his face was all the answer I needed. I leaned forward and dragged my tongue across one of his nipples. It hardened quickly at my touch, and his hiss of breath nearly made me purr. “I don’t recall getting any chocolate over there,” Marcus whispered gruffly.

“Are you sure about that?” I asked, doing my best to give him an innocent look. It probably looked more like I was leering at him, but that was okay too. “It tastes pretty sweet to me.” To prove my point, I took the nub of flesh into my mouth and sucked hard.

Marcus groaned, buried his hands in my hair, and held it back. I assumed he was trying to help me keep it out of the chocolate, but it didn’t matter either way. All I cared about was that he was touching me. “Hurry up and get the chocolate off of me,” he rasped. “Before it makes a mess.”

I gave his sensitive skin one more nip and left off his chest. “Oh, we’re still going to make a mess, regardless,” I promised. “I agree that the chocolate sauce is in the way, though. Let’s see what I can do about that, shall we?”

“Hurry,” Marcus grunted. “Feels like it’s been forever, and I want to touch you too.”

“So demanding,” I chuckled and smiled as I brushed my lips down his chest to his stomach, smearing the chocolate as I placed soft kisses on his body. “I like it. Want to order me around some more?”

“Tongue. Skin. Now,” Marcus growled as the muscles along his torso spasmed. Apparently I was keeping my touches light enough to tickle.

“Someone would think you’ve missed me,” I teased. Then I licked at the lowest part of the trail of chocolate, which had settled in Marcus’s navel.

When I did, he pulled at my hair a little harder. It felt fantastic. “Always miss you when you’re not with me,” Marcus panted. “Idiot. I love you.”

“Love you too,” I answered, my words more than slightly slurred by the fact that I’d begun licking at his skin in earnest. “Lucky to have someone like you.”

“Don’t talk with your mouth full,” he chuckled throatily, tugging at my hair again.

My mouth still on him, I reached up and carefully pinched his side, making him yelp. I’d never been with someone who was so playful in situations like this, but it was one of the things I’d come to love the most about our sex life. Most of my previous lovers had been so serious in bed that a fuck seemed more like a funeral, but Marcus made the whole lovemaking experience a joy. But then, maybe that was the difference when love was involved.

When I finally managed to make my way up his tense stomach and had cleaned him of every bit of the sticky chocolate, Marcus let go of my hair with a growl and yanked me up for a kiss. I moaned into his mouth and he arched his back to grind our cocks together. “No more teasing,” he rumbled, his voice low and rough.

“Considering I fully intend to do something about it, it’s technically not teasing,” I pointed out demurely. “Are you ready to move things along, then?”

“Like you aren’t?” Marcus punctuated the question with another delicious grind against me, and we both moaned.

“I’m always ready for you. Except that one of us should really have fetched the lube from the bedroom before we started this. And if you so much as think about suggesting that we use chocolate sauce as lube, I’ll smack you.”

Marcus rummaged under the throw pillow he was leaning against and pulled out a familiar bottle. “One of us did,” he said with a grin.

I chuckled and pressed my lips against his neck. “You had this all planned out, didn’t you?”

“I sent a text to your mom earlier, to let me know when you were on your way home,” Marcus admitted sheepishly. “Viki bringing the chocolate sauce over was just blind luck, but I wasn’t above using it to my advantage.” He ran a gentle hand along my hair and sighed. “I know I was hurt, and I know you’ve been worried, but I’m fine now and I want my Ollie back. You know, the guy who’s not afraid to jump my bones.”

“Well, let’s see what we can do about that,” I said and ran my tongue along his throat. I made short work of sliding off the sweatpants he was wearing. “Sure you don’t want to move to the bed?”

“I’m good with the couch,” Marcus answered as he unzipped my jeans. His hands were warm as they slid under my briefs, and I had to remember to breathe. “Unless you’re hinting you’d rather move.”

“I’m fine,” I answered. I took a moment to kick off jeans and underwear, then crawled atop my boyfriend’s sprawled form and straddled him, being careful not to put my weight on him. I was still going to have to be careful of his ribs and his freshly healed incisions, but I was pretty sure I could make it work. I held up the lube and bobbed my eyebrows. “Want to help?”

“Planning on going for a ride?” Marcus asked, taking the bottle from my hand. “I can live with that.”

“Thought you might be okay with it,” I said and leaning forward to rest my forehead against his so I could stare into the gorgeous brown eyes that had become as familiar to me as my own. “I want to feel you. I need to know that you’re okay.”

“Oh baby,” Marcus sighed softly. He tilted his head to place a tender kiss on my lips. “I’m here. I’m fine.”

“I thought I was going to lose you,” I admitted in a choked whisper, sniffling a little. “I was so scared.”

“Well, I’m fine now,” he assured me and pressed his cheek to mine. “How about I prove it?”

I heard the click of the bottle opening, and I keened softly as his fingers rubbed at my entrance, spreading the slick as the pressure teased sensitized nerves. “That’s fantastic,” I sighed, letting my body relax fully. “I’ve missed this.”

“Me too,” Marcus said, slowly sinking a finger past the tight muscle. “The world’s never right when you keep your distance from me.”

“Sorry,” I answered. The word ended as a croak when he introduced a second finger. Words were quickly becoming too much of a hassle to use.

“Too fast?” Marcus asked, pausing his movements.

I growled in response. “Hurry the fuck up and move so we can get to the good part.” Okay, so maybe words weren’t as much of a hassle as I’d thought. I’d recite Shakespeare if it would get him to keep moving.

The bastard snickered. “Are you saying this isn’t good? Maybe we should just go to bed and get some sleep.” He spread his fingers and cut short the protest I was about to make, turning it into so much gibberish. He knew me far too well.

Thankfully, he was almost as desperate as I was, and it wasn’t that long before I was blissfully full, riding his cock as if my life depended on it. And right then, I felt almost like it did. It was messy and rough. The tenderness from earlier was gone as we tumbled over the edge together, screaming each other’s names. But maybe that was what we needed. I’d feel him all through the next day, and I was grateful for that.

As we started to catch our breath, Marcus nuzzled my cheek. I turned my face to capture his lips with mine and let out a contented noise as he ran his hands down my back. “You okay?” he asked softly.

“I’m so beyond okay that it’s not even funny,” I answered. “You?”

“As always, you’ve managed to completely blow my mind.”

“Flatterer,” I said with a husky chuckle. “Speaking of blowing things, though, can we move to the bed before we do this again tonight? If we stay here, one of us is going to end up squishing the other when we pass out.”

“And we don’t need Jordan walking into the house to find us naked and asleep on the couch,” Marcus added. We began the process of untangling our bodies to stand on unsteady legs. We stumbled down the hall to our room, grabbing at each other the entire way.

Just before midnight I woke, still feeling a bit boneless and utterly content to be wrapped around the warmth of Marcus’s body. We’d spent pretty much the whole day making up for two weeks of enforced chastity. I lay there for several moments, my face pressed against the back of his neck so I could breathe in his scent. When I felt Marcus stir, I pressed a kiss to the warm skin I’d been nosing against and moved just enough to let him roll over and face me. His eyes were still closed. A sleepy smile crept onto his face and he opened one eye just enough to look at me. “Morning, Ollie,” he mumbled, his voice still a little hoarse from all the noise we’d made before we passed out.

“Good evening, love,” I answered and hugged him against me. “What little is left of it, anyway. It’s nearly midnight.”

“Then it’s still Saturday. We’re allowed to be lazy.” Marcus yawned and nuzzled his face against my shoulder. “We should go out for food and make someone else cook for us. The diner’s open.”

I started to tell him just how much I approved of that idea, but I was interrupted by the sound of the front door opening and then slamming shut. “I’m home,” Jordan called out. “You guys awake?”

“If we weren’t, we would be now,” Marcus yelled back with a roll of his eyes, making me chuckle. “Welcome home.”

“Thanks. Can you tell me why perfectly good chocolate sauce has been left sitting open on the coffee table?”

“Foreplay,” I yelled back. “I recommend staying off of the couch until we’ve broken out the steam cleaner.”

Marcus shook with laughter when Jordan bellowed in disgust. His footsteps stomped down the hall, and a minute later we heard his shower start.

“He must have sat down before we could warn him,” I said and gave Marcus an innocent look. “Whoops.”

“Behave,” he scolded with a laugh. Then he pressed his lips to mine in a soft kiss. “He should have guessed the couch might not be safe, though. The entire living room probably still has a distinct odor to it.”

The grin on my face slid into a more serious expression as I looked into his face and reached up to run my fingers through his hair. “I’m sorry I left you here alone yesterday.”

“You made up for it,” he assured, rewarding me with a devilish grin. “I may have to be kind of careful how I sit down for the next couple of days.”

I felt the exact same way, but I still winced. I hadn’t wanted to hurt him. “Sorry.”

“Don’t be,” he answered with a snort. “As I recall, I was the one who kept insisting ‘harder’ and ‘faster.'”

I opted to not make an issue of it and leaned in for another kiss instead. “Do you have any idea how much I love you?”

“Enough to finally ask that question your mom’s been hinting you should ask?” he teased.

I went still and just watched him as my heart hammered in my chest. “Are you ready for that?”

Marcus brushed his fingers along my cheek and his grin softened to a tender smile so full of love, it made me want to weep for joy. “Once the sun’s up, call your parents and ask them to meet us for lunch,” he said. “Then you and I can go ring shopping, and you can think about what you’re going to say when you propose to me in front of them. I promise you’ll like my answer.”