Author Charlie Richards
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Bringing Him Down to Earth
Part of the Spring Fever Anthology
A standard ride on the light rail train offers a man fantastic opportunities...if he's down to earth enough to accept them.
Cory Porter takes the light rail to and from work on a daily basis. After making an extra stop so he can pick up food for an ailing friend, he’s approached by a stunningly handsome man—Benjamin Sturgis. Cory gives in to temptation and accepts a date from Benji. On his way to meet him at the restaurant, however, Cory sees what looks like a mugging gone wrong in an alley…and recognizes Benji right in the thick of things. Can Cory accept that things aren’t always what they seem, or will he cut Benji from his life…as well as the extraordinary implications it could offer him?
Excerpt - Bringing Him Down to Earth
The excerpt below contain explicit adult language and sexual content.
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The stranger grinned widely, showing off even white teeth. “My apologies. I’m certainly doing this all wrong, but you are striking.” He looked Cory over once more, doing nothing to hide the gleam of interest in his eyes. When he met Cory’s gaze again, he held out his hand. “I’m Benjamin Sturgis. Please pardon my presumptuousness, but would you be available for dinner?”
At that, Cory couldn’t stop his lips from parting in surprise. He instinctively reached out and took the man’s hand. When he felt Benjamin’s callouses slide across his palm, his body responded to the handsome man seated next to him, warming him from the inside out.
“Uh, are you serious?” Surely no way would some stranger sit down and ask him on a date. “No way you’re serious.”
“I am, actually.” Benjamin lifted Cory’s hand, since he hadn’t released him, yet. “Very serious.” He pressed a kiss to the back of it, then winked as he lowered it without releasing him. “Ever seen the movie Avengers?”
Confused at the sudden change, Cory scowled. “Uh, yeah.” He cleared his throat, then admitted, “One of my favorites.”
Benjamin nodded, smiling. “Me, too. You know that part at the end where Iron Man wants to check out shawarma? Ever since then, I’ve wanted to try it, and since I’m here on vacation, I found a place downtown that has it. Wanna come with me?” Benjamin squeezed Cory’s hand as he added, “No bullshit. We’ll meet at the restaurant, if that would make you feel more comfortable.”
Cory thought quickly. Could he trust the man? He’d said they could meet there. It wasn’t like he couldn’t leave whenever he wanted if Benjamin ended up being an asshole. Plus, Cory could let his buddies know where he was going, for safety’s sake.
When was the last time I went on a date, anyway?
“Okay.” Cory figured it could be a mistake, but he couldn’t resist. Benjamin was hot, and he pushed Cory’s buttons. “Uh, where’s this shawarma place?”
In truth, Cory had thought the same thing just about every time he’d seen the movie.
Benjamin grinned broadly at him as he finally released him and yanked out his phone. He poked at the screen for a few seconds before holding out his phone. “Ever been here?”
Cory looked at it and shook his head. “Nope.” He pulled up the maps app on his own phone and entered the restaurant’s info. Once he had it saved, he smiled at his date. “What time?”
“I assume you’re on your way home from work.” Benjamin glanced at Cory’s bag and satchel. “How about seven-thirty? Can you get there by then?”
Doing a quick estimate in his head, Cory added up the time needed for a short visit at Kristof’s, his drive home, getting cleaned up, then making it back into town and to the restaurant. He slowly nodded. Good thing he didn’t live too far out of town.
“Yeah.” Cory nodded. “Yeah, I can make that. Seven-thirty.”
“I am so very pleased,” Benjamin responded. “And please, call me Benji.”
Cory nodded. “Benji.”
Benji’s lips eased into a wry smile. “So, does that mean I can have your name and phone number?”
Grinning, Cory nodded. “Sure.” He saw that his stop was up next, so he put his phone away and shifted his sack and the strap of his messenger bag in preparation to rise. “My name’s Cory Porter, and if it’s a good date, I’ll give you my number.”
“Oh, a challenge.” Benji sounded pleased by that prospect. “In that case—”
Benji reached out and cradled Cory’s jaw. Before Cory could react, his date leaned in and planted a soft, searching kiss on his lips. It was over almost before he realized it had happened, and Benji had released him and relaxed back in his seat.
His dark eyes were twinkling, Benji sounded as if he purred as he stated, “Just to get us started.” He winked. “I’ll see you tonight.”
Cory laughed softly, shock and arousal surging through his system. He nodded dumbly as the train stopped, and he rose to his feet. Feeling the heat in his cheeks, he offered, “See you later.”
“I look forward to it.”
With a spring in his step, Cory headed down the street.