“Where the hell have you been,” Hugh asked angrily as Cary walked into their living room. “Do you know what time it is?”

“I’ve been with a client. I told you that when I called.”

“No, you said you were working late.” Stalking towards Cary Hugh thrust him back against the door, saying with a sneer, “Did you have fun with this ‘client’?”

“God Hugh, get a grip. It was work. Do you think I like doing that when I could be home with you?” He tried to squirm loose from Hugh’s grip.

Hugh’s grip tightened. “You’re not going anywhere until you explain why you smell of booze.”

“Because,” Cary thought fast, “I stopped at Artful’s on the way home. I needed to unwind. It was a tense meeting, the man wanted more than we offer and it took everything I had to convince him to stay with us anyway.”

When Hugh grabbed his chin, forcing him to meet his eyes, Cary did. Nodding slowly Hugh backed away. “I’m sorry. I just…I was sitting here thinking of all the possible reasons why you were so late. After what happened to Preston I always worry that maybe the same bashers will find you sometime. You’re not really that aware when you’re out on your own after dark you know.”

Cary was about to protest that Hugh knew that wasn’t what had happened to Preston but decided to leave well enough alone. “I know,” he said instead. “I guess I should be more careful, and I should have called when I knew I was going to be later than I thought.”

“Yes you should have. But I forgive you. I know you didn’t mean to scare me. Come on, I saved you some dinner.” Taking Cary’s hand Hugh led him to the table. “Sit, I’ll be right back with it.” He cupped the back of Cary’s head, planting a hard, possessive kiss on his lips before heading to the kitchen.

Cary watched as he walked away, shaking his head. Taking off his jacket he tossed it over on the sofa, and sat down.

Moments later Hugh returned with a heaping plate of lasagna, a big smile on his face. “I made your favorite so eat up and enjoy.” He sat next to Cary, watching avidly as he dug in. “Is that all you’re going to eat?” he asked a few minutes later when Cary pushed the still half full plate away.

“Yes. Sorry. I guess the beer I had killed my appetite.” It wasn’t the mythical beer but the champagne and caviar, followed by the huge sandwich that he and Preston had made and shared while they’d reminisced that had killed his appetite but he for sure wasn’t going to tell Hugh that.

“Then it’s time for dessert,” Hugh told him with a mischievous smile. “Go shower while I clean up and then…” He winked as he picked up the dishes and went into the kitchen.

As tired as Cary was, drained from his evening with Preston and then coming home to an irate Hugh, all he wanted to do was go to sleep. But he knew that would hurt Hugh and he wasn’t willing to do that. So, reluctantly, he headed to do as Hugh had asked.

Hugh watched him go as he rinsed the dishes and put them in the washer. Then, as soon as he heard the shower running he went to the sofa and picked up Cary’s jacket, rifling through the pockets before hanging it up. He felt a piece of paper and took it out. “So this is where you were,” he said under his breath as he looked at the address. Pocketing it he plastered a smile on his face and went into the bedroom, stripped, and waited for Cary to join him.

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