More Than Friends:The Complete Second Story

By: Jerry Cole

M/M Straight to Gay First Time Romance


Eric & Clint Series – Book 2




Chapter One


Claire

Ali’s soft muttering wakes me. I know it can’t be any later than five AM. Morning prayers. I lie in bed and listened to the soft, melodic, chanting and wait for his warm body to rejoin mine.

“You don’t want to join me?” His soothing voice seems like something from a dream in my semi-asleep state.

“No, I don’t know how,” I say.

“Just thank whatever higher power you believe in for the day and ask for strength to be a better person,” he says, pulling the blanket back. “Even if we don’t do it the same way, it's a good habit to have. Isn’t acknowledging a higher power one of the twelve steps?”

He lays back down, and I put my head on his chest and throw my arm across his body. The momentary glint of light on my ring catches my eye, and I smile.

“I have a lot to be thankful for,” I say.

“So do I,” he says, kissing the top of my head.

Okay, it’s not a hot threesome. It’s not a hot anything; Ali isn’t a hot guy. He is good-looking in a menswear catalog sort of way, but nothing about him screams sex. He wears pajamas to bed! The tops and the bottoms! But for me, this is the best it has ever been. These nights are the best nights, and he is the best man. I am thankful because I could have lost it all many times.

“If You are out there, thank You for all of this,” I say to the darkness, squeezing Ali tightly. He is right. It can’t hurt to develop an “attitude of gratitude,” as my sponsor would say.

I am still reeling from the last six months. I feel like I haven’t had time to catch my breath, much less be grateful. It took Ali a while to warm up to the idea of dating me. Apparently, Mr. Tejani takes dating very seriously and doesn’t do it very often. He takes the whole “every girl is somebody’s mom” idea to heart. I have seen a lot of guys give it lip service, usually right before they get ready to do something crummy to some girl who “deserves it.” But with Ali, it’s real, and that has made me even more determined to stick with him and have a real relationship with a real man who acts like a real boyfriend. I wasn’t taking no for an answer.

Little did I know, I was getting in way over my head. Once Ali decides to do something, he does it all the way. Flowers, gifts, phone calls just to say hello, text messages just to say he was thinking of me, real dates at restaurants with tablecloths and napkins. I was impressed.

I was impressed and sexually frustrated. Didn’t I tell you he was too good to be true? For months, he barely touched me. We held hands, kissed, and hugged, but that was it. He never even tried for more. I even tried seducing him. I pulled out all of the stops: lingerie, incense, mood music; I even tried camping. Because what man can resist a half-naked girl in a sleeping bag next to a roaring fire? Let me just say, I am convinced those fire ants were sent there by the devil to ruin my plans. Unfortunately, Ali doesn’t drink, and he made my sobriety a condition for our relationship, so there was no way of loosening him up. I was screwed. Or not screwed. I felt like such a pervert. By the time the weather broke and spring came around, I was ready to explode.

By the time the weather broke and all of the girls took to sunbathing on the campus greens, I was convinced that either I had let myself go, or Ali was gay. That would have been just my luck. Two great guys in my life, both of them gay. It would have been funny if it weren’t so flipping tragic. It was driving me crazy, and one night, I just snapped. He was dropping me off at home after our dinner date. It started to rain lightly, and we ran toward my building when he suddenly grabbed me and gave me the most smoldering kiss the world has ever known. We were standing under a freaking streetlight, for God’s sake. An honest to goodness, under the streetlight, in the rain kiss. And then he turned to walk away, and I lost it.

“Are you gay or something?”

He turned to look at me, no doubt puzzled by why his girlfriend was standing in the rain and shrieking at him.

“Is this some game you play with girls? You get them all wound up and then leave them high and dry? Is it just a game to you?” By this point, I was ready to cry.

“Claire?”

“I get it, okay? I am not anybody’s ideal woman, but I thought you liked me,” I wept. It occurred to me that we were breaking up at this point. He was breaking up with me, or maybe I was breaking up with myself. I wasn’t sure.

“I do like you,” he said, still not sure why I was so upset.

“Then why don’t you act like it? Why do you always want to leave?”

I cried harder, and he watched for a minute, in the rain, until he put all of the pieces together in his head. When it all finally clicked, he had an expression I have never seen before or since. He marched over to me and grabbed my wrist. Hard.

“You think I don’t like you because I am not trying to get in your pants?” His tone was accusatory; I felt like I had just offended somebody’s father. Who says “get in your pants” anymore?

“You never even tried…” I stopped talking because I was feeling stupid. Was I mad at him because he wasn’t trying to take advantage of me? I was clearly in need of therapy.

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