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Rated: 13+ · Chapter · Action/Adventure · #2317300
In which Bel gets stuck with a very annoying(and very attractive) housemate/bodyguard
Kam’s in luck.

Nina’s brother Bel is the kid he pulled away from the potential hit and run outside the used bookshop.

And he’s definitely still annoyed that Kam exists.

Nina called Bel earlier and told him she ran into a friend of Silo’s who needed a place to stay for a few days. Bel thought that was weird, but said it was fine. About an hour later a sleek Range Rover pulled up the drive and parked in the carport next to Bel’s Mazda, which didn’t look quite so sleek next to its new companion.

And the man who got out sent Bel’s jaw to the floor.

It had stayed on the floor when this man told Bel what was actually happening, and made it clear that Nina had told him a Little White Lie, and hired a watchdog for him.

Because of course she did.

Currently, Bel is standing in the middle of the front room, arms crossed, glaring daggers at the man standing in the doorway in front of him.

A man who’s got a big stupid grin on his face that’s making that skippy thing happen to Bel’s heart again.

It doesn’t help that he’s still in Chelsea boots, and that black t-shirt and jeans that fit him really well.

Shit.

It’s forty-three degrees outside. Why isn’t he sweating?

Why am I sweating? The AC is on full blast, so what the hell?

Bel keeps his arms crossed to establish his position as owner of the house, not to hide the nervous sweat that is undoubtedly showing through the underarms of his shirt. “So you're telling me that Silo and my sister think I need a babysitter?”

"That's not exactly the words that were used, but yes." Chelsea Boots also has his arms crossed, so Bel can see that tattoo circling his wrist--a snake eating it's own tail. He also looks much more comfortable than Bel.

Bel lifts an eyebrow, trying to figure out if Chelsea Boots is a liar or not. “Because of the USB she was sent?”

“Yes.” Chelsea Boots matches Bel’s eyebrow, only he does it better—his brow is fully cocked.

“Why the hell would someone want to come after me?” Bel realizes he’s said it out loud when Chelsea Boots’ other eyebrow rises to meet the first one.

“Isn’t that a question you should be asking your sister?” Chelsea Boots has moved from the doorway, taking a step closer to Bel.

“You’ve already told me more than she has.” For some reason, Bel takes a step back.

Chelsea Boots takes another step forward.

Bel takes another step back. “What are you doing?”

“Coming into the house. Is that not allowed?” Chelsea Boots is smiling, and Bel’s heart stops skipping and does flip-flops instead. “You’re still staring at me. Close your mouth before something flies inside it.”

Great, so not only has Bel’s heart been doing stupid things, but he’s been staring at the guy his sister hired as his bodyguard long enough for the other man to notice.

Staring with his mouth open.

Because Chelsea Boots is just as stupidly good looking as he was yesterday.

Damn.

“I’m not staring,” Bel snaps. “I’m annoyed.”

“With me, or your sister?” Chelsea Boots is now standing so close Bel can’t see anything else except those coffee colored eyes, glinting with mischief. The smile on the man’s face widens as Bel swallows hard.

“Back the hell away from me.” Bel makes his feet move so that he’s on the other side of the room, as far away as he can get without actually running out of the room. He can feel the blood rising in his face, and in other places he doesn’t want to think about right now.

Get a grip, Bel.

“You’re the one who was in my way.” Chelsea Boots says.

It doesn't help Bel’s fraying nerves that the older man is right. Bel lets out a growl that only seems to intensify the smile on his watchdog’s face as he shoves Chelsea Boots out of the way and goes out the front door, yanking his phone from his pocket as he walks.

His sister answers the phone halfway through its first ring. “I’m guessing this means you’ve met him?”

“Ninaaaaaa!” Bel hates that he sounds like a whiny teenager, but seriously, it’s valid, considering the circumstances. “Why the hell did you get me a watchdog?”

“Because I want to make sure you’re safe.” Nina’s tone is maddeningly reasonable. “It sounds like you like him even less than I do.”

“You’re not the one who has to live with him for—how long?” Nina’s silence is so long that Bel squalls. “Ninaaaa, how looooong?”

“Bel, you’re twenty-two years old, and you sound like a whiny teenager.” Nina is voicing Bel’s thoughts perfectly, which is equally annoying, so Bel turns the subject of conversation back to her.

“Why the hell didn’t you tell me someone already tried to kill you?”

“I did,” Nina’s voice has a hollow ring to it. A ring that only appears when she’s been caught in a lie. “I said someone wants us both dead.”

“But not that someone already tried to kill you.” Bel repeats.

“Did Kam tell you that?”

“That’s his name?” Bel is pretty sure he prefers calling his watchdog Chelsea Boots, but the man probably won’t like that. “Wait, don’t try to change the subject. Answer my question first.”

“Why didn’t you tell me about the motorcycle?” Nina answers his question with a question, the same way she does when she’s hiding something.

“A motorcycle jumped the curb to get around traffic.”

“And I accidentally left my window open. Now that we’ve both told half the truth, we should both be partially satisfied.”

“Nina.”

“Have you looked at the USB files yet?” Nina’s done talking about what the two of them have and haven’t told each other. She’s got that tone in her voice that tells Bel to shut up or she’ll hang up, so Bel answers the question.

“You mean did I look at all five fucking hundred of those files and pictures until my eyes were dried out?” Bel glances over his shoulder to make sure Chelsea Boots—Kam—isn’t listening. The front room is empty, and Bel isn’t sure if that’s a good thing or not. “Yes, I did, and no I didn’t see anything that could be helpful.”

“Did you actually look at them, or just click through them so you could tell me you saw them?”

Bel hesitates. “The second one?”

How the hell did she know that?

“I know how my baby brother thinks.” Nina responds to both Bel’s vocal and silent questions. “Look, the sooner you figure out those files, the faster Kam goes away.”

“What the hell am I supposed to be looking for?” Bel turns all the way around, squinting through the open door. He can’t see Kam anymore. Where the hell is he?

“I don't know.” Nina sounds just as annoyed as Bel feels, but for different reasons. “But I was sent that for a reason, and I can’t figure out what that is without your help. And I promise as soon as we figure it out the watchdog goes away.”

“Why don't you ask Silo to help you with this?”

“Bel.”

“Fine,” this time Bel manages to keep the whine out of his voice. “I’ll look again, and I’ll call you if I find anything, ok? I’ve got to go get ready for work.”

He hangs up and goes back into the house.

Kam is definitely not in the front room. He’s not in the kitchen either. Had he left when Bel was on the phone? No, he couldn’t have; Bel would have seen him. Right?

“Kam?” Bel doesn’t like using his watchdog’s first name when they have actually been properly introduced, but he can’t really call him Chelsea Boots to his face, can he?

“In here,” Kam’s voice is coming from the bedroom. Bel’s bedroom. Why does that make Bel feel twitchy? It’s not like Kam will be sleeping in the same bedroom with him; and it’s not like Kam knew that bedroom was Bel’s right?

Right?

Kam’s back is to Bel when he goes into the bedroom. Bel isn’t sure why he’s relieved that the room is clean, since he shouldn’t care what Kam thinks of him anyway. What he is sure about is that he wants Kam out of this room before he finds—anything he shouldn’t.

“This is my room.”

“How was I supposed to know that?” Kam doesn’t turn around. He’s standing by the nightstand next to Bel’s bed, and he sounds like he’s grinning.

Shit. That means…

“Well, you know it now, so get out. There’s two bedrooms in the house, and you get the other one.” Bel starts to move across the room.

Because he doesn’t want Kam near that nightstand.

He really doesn’t want Kam near that nightstand.

He really really doesn’t want Kam anywhere near that nightstand.

“Is this in the other bedroom, too?” Kam finally turns around, Bel’s heart drops down to his shoes.

Because he sees the red box.

The red box of Trojans.

The unopened red box of Trojans.

The unopened red box of Trojans that he keeps in the nightstand.

The unopened red box of Trojans that he keeps in the nightstand but is now in Kam's hand.

“The seal isn’t even broken.” Kam is definitely smirking, and Bel definitely wants to die.

“So?” Bel leaps across the bedroom and makes a grab for the box, but Kam holds it over his head, just out of reach.

“You have condoms and you’ve never—”

“No!” The word pops out of Bel’s mouth in a defensive squall. He shouldn’t be embarrassed. He knows he shouldn’t be embarrassed. But there’s something about Kam’s damn smirk that is making the blood rise in Bel’s face—and sending increased blood flow to other places that he does not want to think about at the moment.

“So you’re still a virgin?”

Yes, but why the hell is it any business of yours? This time Bel succeeds in snatching the condoms from Kam’s hand and slams the nightstand drawer shut, barely missing Kam’s fingers.

“Stay the hell out of my stuff, creeper!”

“Sorry,” Kam doesn’t sound the least bit apologetic. “I just thought I might want to borrow some.”

“Go buy your own, and stay away from mine.” Bel turns and finds himself nose to nose with Kam.

Coffee-colored eyes lock with baby brown ones. Bel’s breath hitches under Kam’s gaze. Kam takes half a step forward, and Bel doesn’t retreat. It’s not like he can anyway; the nightstand is pressing into his lower back.

“What are you doing?” Bel wants to tell Kam to back the hell off. At least, he thinks he does. Doesn’t he? Should he let this rando invade his personal space like this? Or does he actually like it? The flip-flop skippy thing is happening to Bel’s heart again, and he realizes that he actually doesn't mind Kam being this close.

He’s just not about to tell him that.

Yet.

“I’m curious.” Kam realizes that he is serious. This feisty little puppy intrigues him, and not just because he’s got a target on his back. His gaze drops to Bel’s lips. “And I still need to collect that favor from this morning. If you don’t want me to, then just say it. All you have to do is tell me ‘no’.”

And again, Kam realizes that he means it. It’s going to be at the top of the list of the hardest things Kam has ever done—which is weird—but if Bel tells him to back off, then Kam will back off. If Bel tells Kam to leave, Kam will leave—this room, anyway. If Bel tells Kam no, then Kam is willing to respect that. He really doesn’t want to make this kid uncomfortable.

Why the hell is that?

Neither of them have moved. The only sound in the room is their breathing. It’s not clear who is more surprised when Bel is the one who leans forward, brushing his lips against Kam’s.

Sparks?

Yes.

Oh, yes.

Those are definite sparks exploding inside Kam’s head—purple, green, gold and red dancing in front of his eyes. Kam’s heartbeat changes its rhythm. He gave the kid a choice, but before now he wasn’t sure if that was clear. When Bel kisses him, Kam understands—Bel knew exactly what Kam meant, and he’s making a choice.

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Bel’s lips don’t just brush Kam’s once. The kiss starts out cautiously, so cautiously Kam isn’t sure if Bel has ever kissed anyone, but he changes his mind when Bel kisses him a second time, and a third. Bel tastes like…dark chocolate? Kam has never been much of a sweets person, but for Bel, he might make an exception.

For Bel, he might make many exceptions.

None of the kisses are demanding, just testing, seeing if either party wants more. The sparks in Kam’s head become more defined, until they turn into full on fireworks. Bel breaks the kiss first. He takes a breath.

“Maybe I was curious, too.” The look in his eyes doesn’t match the casualness of his words. Bel wanted it. Bel liked it. But he’s not sure how Kam feels about it. Is the older man indulging him? Teasing him just because he was more experienced than Bel?

Kam can read Bel’s entire thought process in his eyes. Baby brown eyes that are flickering with a combination of uncertainty and…desire? This kid definitely doesn’t have virgin lips, but in every other way?

Still a virgin. “You poor baby.”

“Shut up,” Bel snaps, and Kam realizes he’s said it out loud. He’s ruined the moment, and they both know it. “You can get out of my way now, and go put your stuff in the other bedroom.”

Kam moves, Bel goes to his closet, and Kam goes out to his car. Both are grateful for the excuse to do something else for a minute. The second bedroom in Bel’s house is smaller, and located directly across from Bel’s. It’s got your standard bedroom furniture—bed, dresser, closet, nightstand. Kam pauses next to the nightstand, throwing his bag on the bed.

Is it just in your room?

Kam pulls open the top drawer of the dresser. It’s empty, and so are the other two. Next he checks the nightstand drawer. Also empty. Damn. But then, it’s not as though Kam will have the opportunity to use a condom anyway.

Unless Bel wants it.

Stop! Kam rubs his hands over his face. This is not a date; this is not a one night stand; this is a job. A job that does not involve condoms or kissing or anything else that makes Kam’s heart stutter and other parts want to do other things that he really shouldn’t be thinking about doing right now.

Unless Bel wants it.

Do what you were paid to do, Kam. Nothing more, nothing less. Just do what you’re paid to do.

“Hey,” The uncertainty in Bel’s voice makes Kam turn to face him. “Sorry the room is a little small.”

Kam takes in the little man standing in the bedroom doorway. He’s no longer in jeans and graphic T, but black slacks, white shirt, loafers and…a bowtie? Kam swallows a smirk before he responds.

“It’s fine. I’ve been in smaller rooms.”

Bel has seen Kam’s smirk, though, and his voice shows it. “It’s the dress code.”

“I didn’t say anything.” Kam says. Out loud.

“Ugh, I’m going to work,” Bel sounds like he’d rather be somewhere else tonight, and not just because he’s got an unwanted roommate come watchdog. “So I guess that means you're coming with me.”

“If you send me the location, I’ll come after I’ve unpacked. We don’t have to go in the same car.” Kam offers, aware that neither of them really want to be in this situation, but they have to put up with it.

“You have my number?”

“You gave it to me this morning, remember?”

Right.

This morning.

Because Kam said he wanted to collect a favor.

Which he has now collected.

Because Bel kissed him.

Like a total idiot.

His phone buzzes.

“I just didn’t give you mine until now.” Kam says. “So send me the location.”

“I don’t need to send you the location.” Bel glowers without any real heat, then pulls out his phone and adds Kam’s number to his contacts. “It’s the new high end restaurant in town. I’ll send you the address instead.”

When he does, Kam stares at him. “This is high class. How did you get this job?”

“A friend got it for me. We grew up together and she’s Silo’s little sister and her boss is dating Silo so—” Bel pauses, aware that he’s giving unnecessary details. Kam says nothing, waiting for Bel to finish. “So I tend bar there.”

“You don’t look old enough to be serving alcohol.” Kam’s smirk is back, and Bel’s defenses come back up.

“I don’t look old enough to do a hell of a lot of things, but I do them anyway.”

The angry puppy is back.

“You’re adorable.” Kam means it.

“You’re annoying.” So does Bel.

"8. I Hate My Watchdog

read from beginning "1. Phone Calls in the Dark
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