Going Under (Keep Swimming #2)by Kade BoehmeEx Coast Guardian Kyle Bevins is a joker, a friend, and unlucky in love. His friends know he’s a good guy to turn to if for nothing other than a much needed laugh, but he rarely heeds his own advice. He’s content as the new co-owner of his friend’s charter fishing company in Pensacola Beach, Florida, but he’s missing the companionship of having a significant other and tired of the old hookups.Eddy Jiminez is unlucky, period. He’s been dealt most every negative consequence of being gay. He’s also an ex-con, so he figured he’d play it safe, keep working hard and trying to forget that it was men he craved. But when he meets Kyle, he can’t stop going back for more.
When Kyle figures out a past connection he has with Eddy, he figures it’d be unforgivable, but he’d do anything to keep Eddy from drowning again, so he decides to see him safely into the big world of being Out before he drops the bomb. With a relationship based on a lie of omission, will there be a second chance for both of them, or will their relationship go under?
Chapter 1Kyle slammed down his fourth beer. Or was that his fifth? Fuck it, who cared? He looked at his best friend and business partner, Heath, and his boyfriend, Cary. They were too busy being all couple-y and talking about something silly Cary’s son Gus had done. Kyle was super happy for them, he’d believed they’d work it out last year when they had some pretty heavy problems due to Heath’s being closeted and both of them not being so great at the relationship thing. But now they were solid. Which meant Kyle was often a third wheel, unless Cary’s friend Kent came along, but that prickly bastard was rarely any fun. He’d decided long ago Kyle wasn’t his favorite person and while Kyle didn’t like being disliked for no reason—okay maybe he did joke around too much, and pushing Kent’s buttons was oh so fun—he wasn’t going to force himself on the guy.“If you guys wanted couple time, you coulda just told me. I’m just sayin’,” Kyle huffed.They turned their attention to him, Heath looking guilty. “Sorry,” Heath said.Kyle waved him off. “Just fucking with ya.”“You fuck with us? Never,” Cary said.“Douche,” Kyle said, playfully. Cary rolled his eyes. “Seriously, though. If you guys want some date time, I can go hang out at the bar…”“Would you mind?” Heath asked, looking guilty enough, Kyle didn’t think it’d be fair to make his friend feel worse. He got it, really. They didn’t get to come out often without Cary’s son, and that had to make grown up time precious.“No man. I kinda invited myself, huh?”“Not at all,” Cary said. “Really, just give us twenty minutes to make out and I promise we’ll be right back with you.”Kyle laughed, raising his mug in salute. “One Kyle Free make out sesh, coming up. Need anything while I’m at the bar?” But they didn’t hear him, they’d already suctioned to one another’s faces. Kyle rolled his eyes, a habit he’d picked up from Cary. As if he didn’t act immature enough.He pulled up a stool at the bar and watched the Ray’s game that had just gone into the fourth inning, Rays ahead by three. He gave an obligatory hoot as one of the players made it safe to third base. I’d settle for second base tonight. Second base in Kyle’s mind was at least a good hand job. And he’d been going through a slightly dry spell over the last month or so. Work had been crazy busy since tourist season had jumped into full swing. With Heath around full-time, they’d managed to build the clientele at their charter fishing service in leaps and bounds. Word of mouth had them booking up almost every free slot for the summer months. Life was pretty sweet. It’d be even sweeter if he could get off, though. This was his first free weekend in over a month so it’d be opportune. He just wasn’t quite desperate enough to turn to one of those apps, yet, nor did he plan on snatching the first dick that wandered in off the street.Then the next dick to wander off the street happened to pull up a stool not far from him. Holy flippin’ fuck. Kyle had to stop himself from drooling. He wasn’t sure what it was, something slightly familiar about the guy’s face. He was gorgeous, in a rough and tumble way. He had a good four inches on Kyle’s five-feet-nine. Where Kyle was bulky and still kept pretty ripped, maintaining the musculature he’d earned during his days in the Coast Guard, the other guy was all rangy muscles and big arms.The guy also looked like he’d had a harder life, weathered and rough. The tan was natural and cinnamon, dark brown hair on his head and chin, so the guy was definitely hispanic. He also fit every convict-from-the-barrio stereotype. He had tattoos, clearly of the faded prison variety, on his knuckles and arms. His black wife beater made his dark eyes stand out and showed off his perfect biceps. Kyle could have done without the sagging, denim board shorts, but everything else was working for him.Kyle moved in for the kill, sliding down to the stranger who eyed him warily as he took a seat next to him. “First time?”“Is that your best line?” The guy asked, raising an eyebrow. He was banging his knuckles on the bar top nervously, body language screaming for Kyle to go away, but his eyes begging Kyle to stay.“Well, it’s worked well enough so far.”“Speaks highly of the guys you’ve been coming on to.”“Oh, ho!” Kyle chuckled. “He has teeth.” Kyle leaned closer to the stranger. “I like to be bitten.”The guy’s eyes flared with a barely concealed flame, a hunger. Before the guy could say anything, a shot of tequila was dropped off by the bartender. “Rough day?” Kyle asked.“Rough week.”Kyle could relate, but probably hadn’t had one quite as rough as this guy. He held out his hand. “Kyle Bevins.”The guy watched Kyle carefully for a second before slowly reaching out, taking Kyle’s hand to shake. “Eddy Jiminez.” Ohhh sexy. Not the Eddy part, but the way the man said Jiminez, like Heemeenez. Kyle had gotten the hispanic part right, but upon closer inspection he’d thought he may have been wrong since the guy’s eyes were a dark blue rather.“What do you do, Eddy Jiminez?” Kyle said the last name phonetically, hoping for a laugh. He didn’t get a full laugh, but a slight turning up of full lips and a huff was good enough. Maybe this wouldn’t be a colossal failure.“I’m a barber.”“Uh, like a hair stylist?”Eddy shook his head no and took his tequila shot, barely wincing as it went down. Kyle swallowed audibly as he watched Eddy’s prominent adam’s apple rise and fall. “No, not like a stylist. I’m a barber. None of those highlights or fancy cuts. I just do cuts, mostly on men, at a little barber shop in Northwest P-cola.” Ah, so a local.“That’s cool. My friend and I, we run a charter fishing service.”“Ah, so you’re bitch to the snowbirds?”Kyle choked on his beer and laughed out loud, catching the teasing glint in Eddy’s eyes. Yes! The guy was definitely interested.“So how much for a haircut… In private?”That finally got a real laugh from the guy. It was warm and deep, coursing right through Kyle’s veins down to his cock, chubbing right up.“Seriously?” Eddy Jiminez asked, eyes dancing merrily. “You must get laid all the time with those skills.”“Oh, I’ve got skills,” Kyle said, proudly. “I’m even better at blowjobs than I am at bullshitting. And I am a master bullshitter.”Kyle took another drink of his beer and when he looked back at Eddy, his eyes were locked on Kyle’s lips, cheeks flushed, eyes burning with desire. “Is that so?” he asked hoarsely.“Oh, that’s a guarantee,” Kyle said in his most seductive voice, winking. “So how about that private hair cut?”That seemed to pull the guy out of his head, or push him further in. Kyle could practically see the wheels turning, Eddy’s nerves were obvious as he looked around the room like he expected someone to materialize. Oh goody, a closet case. Oh well, not like he hadn’t been there, done that. Shame, though. Eddy was hot, and seemed like a nice guy.“I’m asking you to let me blow you, not take me to dinner,” Kyle said, placing a hand on Eddy’s leg. Eddy looked down, staring at the hand on his leg. He glanced back at Kyle, licking his lips. That tongue was almost freakishly long, Kyle had only seen a couple like that. He was almost tempted to ask Eddy to touch his nose with it, knew the guy could probably do it. But that wouldn’t exactly further his cause. “Whaddya say?”Eddy asked for another tequila shot and they sat quietly for a moment as the bartender poured the cheapest, rotgut shit they had. After tossing the shot, Eddy stood from his seat, smacking down a twenty on the bar and nodding. When Eddy started for the door, Kyle couldn’t stop from doing a few shimmies of his hips, his version of a happy-dance. When he stopped, he met Heath’s eyes across the room. Heath was smiling, giving the thumbs up. Good, he knew the score.Kyle made his way out to the parking lot. When he made it out the door, strong hands gripped him and slammed him into the walls in the shadows, lips mashing to his. He moaned into the kiss, opening his eyes to see Eddy’s sparsely lit face, long black lashes resting on high cheeks. God the man was hot. Not in the traditional way, mostly in a convict kinda way, but Kyle was sure as hell not gonna complain.When Eddy pulled out of the kiss Kyle asked if he wanted to go back to his place. Again, Eddy seemed nervous. “Is this your first time or something?” Kyle asked.That earned him a scowl. “No. I just don’t do… this.”“Okay,” Kyle drawled. “Look, if you’re not up for it, I can just go back in with my friends.” As he shoved from the wall, a hand on his chest stopped him.“No, man. I’m interested, okay. I just am a little lost.”“Well, I live two streets over. If you want to go to my apartment, I’m within walking distance if you want to bolt. Again, I’m not asking for a ring, just fooling around.”Eddy seemed to consider Kyle’s words before nodding. “Okay. Yeah, let’s go.”“Do you want to ride with me?” Kyle asked, headlights blinking on his 4Runner as he pressed the unlock button on his keyless entry. He felt pretty safe letting the guy in his car, his apartment. When they’d kissed he’d frisked a little, satisfied he wasn’t carrying a concealed in his waistband. And lord know with the guy wearing flip-flops with socks he’d have noticed anything else.Kyle always was wary of picking up people at bars, so he always did the discrete frisking. He’d had friends have their shit fucked up because they weren’t careful. He’d even frisked Heath before they hooked up the first time, eight years earlier.“I can follow in my truck,” Eddy said. He pointed to a small black S-10 parked a few spots down.Kyle waited until he saw the headlights behind him before he headed the half mile toward his house. He half-expected Eddy to puss out, but when he pulled in a parking spot in front of his apartment, Eddy’s truck pulled up next to him. He cheered inside, refraining from another happy dance. He gave Eddy a smile when the man got out of his truck. Eddy smiled back at him, shyness belied by his hungry gaze.Kyle headed up the sidewalk, Eddy hot on his trail, and let them in his two bedroom apartment. When he flicked the lights on, he was happy to see he hadn’t left a huge mess. There were dirty dishes visible in the sink, but other than an empty beer bottle on his coffee table, the place was okay for company. Not that most hook ups cared, but he’d have been a little embarrassed to have to get fucked on a pile of dirty clothes.He turned to Eddy. “I guess I should have asked if you’re top, bottom?”Eddy frowned. “Um, do you mind if we just fool around?”“Not at all.” Disappointing, but definitely not a problem. An orgasm with someone else was always better than alone. Well… Almost always. No one like a toothy blowjob or an after-sex cryer.“Do you want a beer? I’m assuming you’re old enough since you were in a bar.” He walked into the kitchen, groaning inwardly at he dumb joke. No doubt the man was old enough, he looked a little older than Kyle. “I have Yuengling and some weird shit Heath left.”“Uh, yeah, I’m thirty. I think you’re good,” Eddy said, amused. “And Yuengling is fine.” He sounded distracted as he looked around the room. “You were in the Coast Guard?” Eddy asked, looking at the framed picture of Kyle in his uniform at graduation with his best friend—well, his best friend at the time—Gabriel at his side.“Yup,” he said, handing Eddy his beer. “Four years. Did it to pay for school. Kids from my neighborhood either joined the service or ended up on drugs.”Eddy gave a self-derisive grunt, sounding a lot like Heath. “Sounds like where I grew up.”“What about you?”Eddy suddenly seemed very uncomfortable, not meeting Kyle’s eyes. “I, uh, got my GED. Last couple years of highschool I had a rough time.”“Well, you went to college. You have to do that to be a barber right?”“Something like that,” Eddy said, evasively.Kyle sat on the couch, patting the spot next to him. Eddy took a seat, but not nearly close enough. “You weren’t kidding about not doing this very much.”Eddy, for all his imposing muscles and tattoos, for his badassed nature, seemed out of place and timid as a blushing bride. “That obvious?”“A little,” Kyle teased. “We don’t have to do anything. We can just hand if you want. Friends never hurt anybody.” His balls protested every word, but no way was he going to force the issue. Eddy sat his beer bottle down on the coffee table.“Can I kiss you again? That was real nice. I didn’t get to do that often.”Kyle frowned as he watched Eddy, who asked his question without looking at Kyle. Kyle wondered just how much experience this guy had. His heart ached for Eddy, he’d known plenty of guys in a situation where they didn’t get to act on their natural impulses. He could give this to Eddy. He got on his knees in front of Eddy, taking his face in both hands. Eddy’s eyes were wide, assessing, but Kyle went for it.