Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Game Junkies ~ A Love in the City Romance by Dellani Oakes ~ Part 26


She felt his head move, eyes searching for hers in the dark. He moved her hand lower, letting her touch him. The skin was soft, smooth, hot to the touch. She hadn't expected such heat. It throbbed under her palm, like a living thing. She could understand now why he referred to it as if it were something separate from him, like it had a mind of its own. She couldn't resist stroking him, feeling him grow more firm under her hand. He shoved her hand further, letting her clasp him. He sucked in a harsh breath, moaning slightly as she continued to explore.

"What's next, Ave?" he whispered huskily. "Do we finish this in a completely uncivilized manner, or do I run like hell to the bathroom?"

Her lips on his throat and another stroke on his cock answered his question. He rolled to his side, pulling her close. Her hand slid around to his ass as she tried to drag his pants off. He helped her with one hand, the other was trapped between them. He rolled onto his back for a moment, freeing his arm, taking her with him. She lay on his chest, kissing him. She couldn't stop touching him. The guys fascinated her. She couldn't explain why.

Colby undressed her hurriedly, afraid she would change her mind. He didn't want to rush, but he couldn't wait another second. Nothing they'd done so far had excited him as much as having her curious hands travel his body in the dark. He thought briefly of a condom, but his bag was on the other side of the room. He didn't want to break the mood to get one. He was too far gone, a slave to his hormones.

Soon, she was naked too. Their bodies lay near one another, her quick, lithe hands between them, playing with him. Deciding that it was his turn to play, he rolled her onto her back. His mouth descended on her breast as the other drifted down her belly, circling her navel. It followed the curve of her hips, dropping briefly to fondle her ass. It traveled the curve of her hip once more, dipping between her legs. Her heat pleased him. He wanted to touch her everywhere at once, but contented himself with letting his hand lie between her thighs, not yet penetrating.

"I'm going to touch you," he told her. He didn't want to shock her and end up in a neck brace.

Shivering, she opened her legs a couple of inches, just enough for him to slip his fingers inside her. Avery gasped when he touched her, wiggling away for a moment, before coming back to him. Her body was rigid, but he wasn't sure if it was a good or bad tension. He stroked her once, softly. Moisture gushed from her, and she moaned. Taking that as a good sign, he stroked her once more. She opened fully to him, tugging on him anxiously.

"Easy on the goods, love," he said, imitating Captain Jack Sparrow.

Avery giggled, easing her grip. "What's next?" She sighed, moving her hips against him as he continued to stroke.

"What do you want next?"

"That feels so good."

"I've got better," he promised, kissing her. His mouth moved toward her breasts and he feasted on them as he continued to stroke her. He felt around, curious that he felt no resistance.

"What are you doing?" she asked, closing her legs against his hand.

"Um, that um—thing that—uh—you're a virgin...."

"Oh, that. Pretty sure that tore when I was taking karate. Does that help?"

Colby chuckled, nuzzling her neck. "I don't know, I've never done this before."

"Oh, it was all big talk?" Avery smirked, kissing him.

"With a virgin. Stop talking," he commanded.


His kiss halted further talk. He rolled her on her back, positioning himself between her thighs. He couldn't see her well in the dark, but he could imagine her—lips puffy with their kisses, dark eyes wide with wonder, pupils dilated with lust, her breasts ripe and firm, the nipples pointed at him. He kissed her deeply, thrusting his hips. He dove into her hot, sleek passage, gasping as it gripped him. He stopped, waiting for her to relax. Another gentle thrust got him most of the way in. Only another inch before he was fully inside her. Avery gasped, exhaling sharply.

"You okay?" he asked, suddenly worried.

"Yeah. That's it?" she sounded somewhat disgusted. "All the build up and that's all I get?"

Colby laughed, raising his hips, he slid out and back in. Avery gasped.

"Okay, that's better," she said thoughtfully.

"Give me a minute," he assured her. "I guarantee it's more than that."

"It better be. All this damn fuss."

He thrust the rest of the way in. Avery gasped.

"Oh, my fucking God! Do that again!"

He happily complied. Setting a slow, steady rhythm, he made love to her. They kissed and licked as their hips moved in unison. Soon, Avery's movements became more urgent. She thrust against him, telling him to go faster. Never one to disappoint a lady, he complied. He felt her body tense beneath him and he knew her climax was near. Unable to stop his own another minute, he let loose the reins that held him. Up until that moment, he'd been in control, but that was gone now. Avery gasped and panted as they bounced rapidly on the bed. She clung to him, unable to move with him anymore. She gave herself over to the unfamiliar sensations surging through her.

"Oh, God! What is that?"

©2021 Dellani Oakes

Thursday, May 26, 2022

Game Junkies ~ A Love in the City Romance by Dellani Oakes ~ Part 25

He nuzzled her neck, nibbling her earlobe. "I don't need one. I'm going to pleasure myself and fantasize about you." His hot breath tickled the hairs on her neck.

Avery shivered, her nipples pebbling under her loose sweater. Colby couldn't let himself touch them again, or he'd lose himself completely. He wanted to, needed to, desperately. Her taste was still in his mouth and her scent was on his face and his clothing. It was divine torture. He licked her neck once more, then set her aside.

"If you need to pee, go now."

Suddenly embarrassed, Avery dashed to the bathroom. She brushed her teeth and washed her face after going pee. She changed into her pajamas when Colby took over the bathroom. He warned her, again, not to open the door.

Knowing that he was going to jack off, while thinking about her, made her terribly curious—in a disgusted, fascinated sort of way. She knew what a man's private parts looked like, but she'd never seen Colby naked and aroused. Mesmerized by the idea, she lay in the bed thinking about it, trying to hear any sounds that might tell her what he was doing.

He'd begin by lathering the soap in his hands, touching himself, imagining her hands on his body. He'd go slowly, at first, then faster as his pleasure grew. Soon, he would build to the point of completion. Would he call out her name? Would he groan as he had when his face was between her breasts?

She wanted to watch him. Knowing the door didn't lock, she was horribly tempted to look in on him. She could see enough through the shower door— "No!" she whispered the command. "No! You can't peep on Colby, he'd never forgive you!"

There was a thump in the shower. It sounded like Colby had hit his elbow on the shower door. Her imagination turned back to him, naked and aroused. How would he complete the act? What did men do when they did—that? The guys always made funny movements with their hands near their groins, whenever they talked about it. Did they just grab and yank? Wouldn't that hurt?

Sick with curiosity, she put the pillow over her head. Her mind went crazy with images of Colby naked, stroking himself. She imagined how he looked, based on how large he felt when she was close to him. Colby would probably have been impressed at the proportions she awarded him, in her vivid imaginings.

She'd almost made up her mind to go in and spy, when the water shut off. The shower door opened and she heard Colby singing as he dried himself off. Her mind continued to provide her with a pornographic play by play. She'd seen enough of his physique over the last few years, to know that he was lean muscled and ripped. He wasn't a body builder, but he was a swimmer and had the long, lithe muscles to go with it. His broad shoulders and chest had riveted her attention the night before.

The door to the bathroom opened. Steam billowed out as Colby walked toward the bed. His hair was wet, standing out from his head in wild abandon. His chest hairs glittered with moisture that hadn't been dispelled by the towel. He wore his pajama pants with no top. Avery was captivated by his chest, shoulders and abs. A thrill ran through her, lodging low in her belly. She shifted uncomfortably, her body suddenly feeling hot and needy. She crossed her legs, but that didn't help.

"Better?" her voice squeaked more than she'd intended.

"Yeah. Thanks." He threw back the blankets and dropped on the bed.

Avery scooted away, curled on her side as he turned out the light.

"I'm not going to attack you in your sleep," he said as he shifted around, getting comfortable.

"I know that."

"Cause it's much more interesting if you're awake," he murmured, his fingers running down her spine. He moved closer, leaning over her shoulder, his body close, but not touching hers. "I thought for sure you'd come in," he chuckled.

"In my imagination, I did," she whispered, half hoping he wouldn't hear her.

His fingers down her spine told her he had. They lingered at a sweet spot at the small of her back, caressing gently. How did he know that was the spot that drove her completely insane?

Because it's Colby. He knows things about me I don't even know.

He moved away as quickly and silently as he'd arrived. Avery felt cold and lonely when he returned to his side of the bed. Snuggling deeper under the covers, she could feel his warmth a few inches away. Unable to control herself, she rolled over, crawling closer, she laid her head on his chest.

"Night, Colb."

"Night, babe." He kissed the top of her head, his arm around her shoulders.

His soft breathing told Avery he was asleep. She wanted to touch him and see if he reacted in his sleep. She wanted to explore his body the way he had explored hers. Her hands crept down toward the waist band of his pants. She couldn't see anything in the dark but she could feel. Her fingers slipped under the fabric of his pants and boxers. The coarse hair of his lower abdomen made her fingers tingle. A couple inches lower and she'd be there. Curious hands moved slowly, lower until she reached the base of his penis.

His hand clamped hers, holding it in place. "If you want to touch the goods, all you have to do is ask, Avery. I'd rather be wide awake when you fondle my junk, so I can enjoy it."

©2021 Dellani Oakes

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Game Junkies ~ A Love in the City Romance by Dellani Oakes ~ Part 24

Avery burst into tears, touching his cheek, her lips trembling. "I love you so much. Of course you can stay. You know you're welcome here any time you want."

He didn't say anything. Instead, he pulled her close, settling Avery on his lap as his lips captured hers. Her arms snaked around his neck. They kissed a long time, exploring with their mouths. Soon, Colby let his mouth drift to Avery's breasts once more. He loved how her soft skin covered the firm, resilient mounds. The nipples peaked under his lips, straining against the fabric of her tank top. She wasn't wearing a bra, a fact he'd noticed earlier in the day. He wanted to take her shirt off and explore her breasts more thoroughly, but knew that Avery would probably not permit that. He contented himself with rasping his teeth over the cloth.

Avery shivered, arching her back as he licked and sucked. She did something that shocked him so much, he almost choked on his own tongue. She wiggled around and took off her top, bringing his mouth onto her naked breast.

Colby moaned, his mouth on one nipple, his hand caressing the other. "Oh, God, Ave! Are you trying to kill me?"

"Shut up and lick me," she commanded.

"Do you know what this does to me?" His voice sounded hoarse, tight, lustful. He could hardly form words. All he could think about was the fact that her bare breasts were his to enjoy, but nothing else. He wanted it all, not just enough to torture him.

"It feels so good," she breathed, pushing his head down once more.

Groaning, he did as she told him. If he couldn't have it all, he would enjoy what she gave him. Even if his cock felt like it was going to explode. He was afraid he'd cum in his pants, but that was a minor worry. Of more immediate consideration was how he could possibly control himself. He hovered on the edge of the precipice. It would take very little to push him past the point of no return.

Avery bounced on his lap, nudging him with her breast. Colby rested his head in her cleavage, unable to comply or move. His balls hurt. Avery's weight, while delightful, was also torture. It took her a few moments to realize he hadn't moved.

"What's wrong?" she lifted his face so his eyes met hers. "Are you okay?"

Colby shook his head. "I can't do this halfway, Ave. It's an all or nothing kind of deal. This feels great for you, but it's killing me. I want—in...." He stopped himself before he said something that made her angry. Saying he wanted inside her was a sure way to get his nuts hammered—and not in a fun way.

"I didn't know," she whispered. "I can't do any of this right." She slid off his lap, grabbing her sweater. She shoved it over her head. "Maybe this isn't a good idea. Us. Together. I keep messing it up. I don't know what I'm doing."

Before she could get in full freak out mode, Colby took her hands, holding them in his. "None of this, young lady," he said sharply. "You're not screwing up. This is great, and I love the hell out of it. I just can't guarantee that I won't try to take it further. Ave, a man can't think too well with his balls are engaged. Only one half the equipment works at a time. It's either balls or brains. Trouble is, when the guys take over," he paused. "Well, it's a hell of a lot of fun, but I can't stop once I'm started."

"Guys? We refer to your male parts as the guys?" She had laughter in her voice. "Aren't they all attached, a complete package?"

"Try swinging a dick and a pair of testicles, and see if you don't refer to them that way."

"I know some women who call their tits the girls," Avery offered.

"But trust me, the girls don't feel quite the same way as the guys in this equation."

"I don't think I want to know," she said, holding up a hand to stop him.

"Well, you're gonna hear it, because if you don't, this is going to continue until we make love. Or I die from lust. There is no middle ground."

Avery frowned. "I don't think that's a thing, Colb. I am rather sure that you made that up and are exaggerating to guilt me into sex."

"No, I'm not trying to guilt you. Exaggerating somewhat, no death involved, but I'll just feel like I want to die, and I'll be spending a lot of alone time in the bathroom."

"Are you sure that living here is a good idea?"

"It's a very good idea. How are you going to get over being scared of our relationship, if you're not in it? I don't mean jump in with both feet and sink or swim. We'll work out some of the kinks, talk things through, and eventually—"

"I will gift you with my virginity."

"I prefer to think of it as I will gift you with your womanhood," he said with a sly wink.

Avery smacked him. "Of course, you'd like to think that."

"I think your way too," he replied. "I love you like crazy." He kissed her on the nose. "Do you need a shower?"

"No, I'm fine. Why?"

"Cause I need one. This time, do me a favor, don't walk in on me?"

"Am I to understand that you'll be pleasuring yourself in my shower?" she sounded slightly offended.

"You understand correctly. Ave, you've got me so hot, I could cook rocks on my balls."

"Nice image, Colb. Really. Should I get you a magazine?"

©2021 Dellani Oakes

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Game Junkies ~ A Love in the City Romance by Dellani Oakes ~ Part 29

"I'm pressing charges," Colby said. He didn't feel very confident, but Buck backed him up, nodding with satisfaction.

The cop and his prisoner went to his car. He shut the tattooed man in the back seat and came back over to talk to Colby and Buck.

"This is a good place," Buck continued. "His buddies bear watching," he told the officers. "I got nothing concrete, but I think they're dealing."

Colby told them about Gavin's experience the day before. The cops nodded, listening and asking questions.

"We'll make sure everyone knows. Thank you. Sorry about the car, kid," one cop said. "Depending on your insurance, they might pay." He shook his head. "If not, my friend does body work. He can pop that out no problem. The paint didn't crack, at least." He handed Colby two business cards. "If you see or hear anything from our friends, call me. If you need bodywork, call this guy and tell him Carl sent you."

"Will do. Thank you, sir."

The cop laughed. "I'm probably only a couple years older than you, Colby."

"Yeah, well you're the one with the badge. My dad taught me to call men like you, sir."

Laughing, the cop got in his car and the two officers took off with the prisoner. A tow truck arrived a little while later and collected both cars from Colby's spots. He got what he needed and left, not wanting any further trouble from the neighbors.

When he got back to Avery's apartment, it smelled of fresh laundry and baking bread. She loved to bake, but rarely did because her oven was somewhat cantankerous. She'd fixed a late lunch of soup and fresh bread. Colby told her about his experience with the tattooed man while they ate.

"Jesus, Colb! I'm glad you're staying with me! Did he hurt you?"

"Not a mark on me. All those Steven Seagal movies paid off." He'd taken Aikido for years, though he'd never had to use it outside the dojo.

"You need to move out of that place. I've got plenty of room. You could give your month's notice and leave."

"You sure? That's a big step."

"Positive. Let's make plans for next weekend and get the guys to help. You know they would."

Colby nodded. He had to agree that it was a good idea. He wasn't sure he felt comfortable in his own place now, even with Buck watching his back. His friend couldn't be home twenty-four/ seven.

"Okay. We can go over and get a load of stuff before dinner. I'll call the guys and see if they can help move some stuff. I'll talk to the manager tomorrow."

Avery jumped up, kissing him as she sat on his lap. "This is going to be great! I'm so excited!"

Colby grinned, kissing her playfully. "It's already great. It's going to be greater."

They kissed a long time. Colby's phone rang as they moved their celebration to the bedroom. It wasn't a number that Colby recognized and no name came up, but he answered anyway.

"Hey, Colby, it's Buck. You're suddenly Mr. Popularity. Someone took spray paint to your door and windows. I saw them, but couldn't get over fast enough. I called the cops, but of course there's not much to go on."

"Shit! Thanks, Buck. I've been planning to move in with my girlfriend. I think this just prompted me to move sooner."

"I've got a truck and two brothers. We can get you moved out today."

"Do it," Avery said, blinking back tears. "I don't want you hurt."

"You sure?"

She nodded.

"I'll be over in ten minutes," Colby said. "Gotta put my pants back on."

Buck laughed loudly. "It can wait an hour."

"No, I'd better get over there. Avery understands."

"Okay, dude. See you soon. Sorry about the timing."

"At least it was before and not during. She'd flat kill me then."

"If it had been during, why would you be answering the phone?"

Colby laughed. "Good point."

Gavin and Stan showed up shortly after Colby arrived at his apartment. He wasn't entirely sure how they found out he was moving, but he didn't say no to the extra help. Avery didn't have room for all his furniture, but he took pieces he most needed, or those she wanted to replace. The rest he left with Buck to keep, distribute or get rid of.

Several other neighbors, who were on friendly terms, helped Colby pack up his things and he was fully moved out of his place in a couple hours. Many of them drove over to Avery's to unload and replace the furniture. Another two hours later, his things were inside and they were catching their breath.

Colby ordered pizza and Stan made a beer run. In deference to Avery, it was strictly IBC and cream soda. No one objected, nor would they take any payment.

"I figure, pay it forward," Buck said. "One day, I move, I call you."

"Works for me," Colby assured him. "Thanks, Buck. Sorry you've got to put up with the dirtbags."

©2021 Dellani Oakes

Game Junkies ~ A Love in the City Romance by Dellani Oakes ~ Part 23

"That's really cool of you," Alice said, giving him a kiss. "You guys are the best friends ever." She hugged them all, pulling Avery in too.

Gavin found himself in the group hug between Alice and Avery. His face was nearly in Alice's cleavage and Avery's breasts pressed against his chest. It was divine torture. Embarrassed and blushing, he wandered into the living room.

"We've got to get him a girl," Avery whispered.

"I've been thinking about that. There are a couple girls, I work with, who might be interested. If not, I used to work in a beauty salon washing hair. The girls there would treat him right."

"Let Operation Gavin begin," Stan whispered huskily.

Both girls let out an eep of surprise. They didn't even know he was there.

"My friend needs to get laid," he said quietly. "He needs a woman who will treat him right, not rip out his soul."

"You've had your soul ripped?" Avery asked, then wished she hadn't. "Sorry, I forgot." She made herself busy.

"My fault for bringing it up," Stan said, turning away.

Alice caught his arm. "Not at all. No fault here, okay? We've all got our demons. We've all made mistakes of one kind or another."

Stan leaned over, his mouth near hers. Alice kissed him, her lips lingering on his with a smile. He touched her cheek, his thumb brushing across her lips before he kissed her again. This one was longer and made Avery a little uncomfortable. She made some noise with the knife and chopping block to startle them and remind them she was in the room.

Laughing softly, Stan took a step back. "Sorry, Ave." He touched Alice's cheek again. "We'll continue that sometime when we haven't got a chaperon."

"Count on it."

He left the room. Alice grabbed Avery's hand, squeezing and squealing quietly. She looked so happy, Avery grinned and gave her a hug.

"Yay!" she said softly.

They finished fixing side dishes while Colby and Gavin got the grill ready for barbecue chicken. Stan had a great recipe for sauce. Avery had a small patio that was walled on three sides, with a corrugated plastic roof. Even in the cold, it was a sheltered spot to set up the grill. Colby wasn't much of a hand at conventional cooking, but he rocked a grill. Gavin was also good. Stan was great with sauces and marinades, but his cooking skills were minimal. Between the three of them, they did an admirable job with outdoor cooking.

Dinner finished around 8:00. They ate and the others decided it was time to go home. Alice, Stan and Gavin had to work on Sunday. Colby and Avery were lucky to have the weekend off. Hugs and kisses all around, the others headed home.

When they were gone, Colby felt awkward. He wasn't sure how to behave. He'd spent the night many times, like the night before, but he'd never been the boyfriend before. He and Avery had always been relaxed around one another, and talked about what was bothering them. Still feeling unsure, he decided to put the age old method to work once more. They'd always told one another the truth. Just now, the truths were more difficult, compounded by the fact that he more time he spent around her, the more he wanted her. He sat on the couch with, what Avery called, his serious-talk-face. She sat opposite him, legs crossed, knees nearly touching his thigh.

"I've had the best day of my life today, Ave," he began, his voice low. " And I really like this boyfriend gig."

"I like this girlfriend gig, too." She took his hand, winding her fingers with his. "So, what's bothering you? You only act like this when you're going to be Brutally Honest."

Colby chuckled, dropping his head. "If you know that, you probably know what I'm going to say next."

Avery tipped his chin up, gazing into his eyes without blinking. A soft smile tugged her lips. "Pretty good idea, yeah. I'm not quite ready, Colby. I love you and I'm very attracted to you. But I'm so scared. What if I fuck this up? What if we try being a couple, and fail miserably? You're the best friend I've got. I don't want to lose you."

Colby scooted closer. "You don't have to worry about that. No one has a guarantee that a relationship will work. We've got an advantage though, we've known one another for years. You read me like a book. And I don't fuck up too bad, when I actually pay attention."

"You are moderately perceptive."

"I really want to take this relationship to the next level, Avery."

"And by next level, you mean sex."

He fidgeted slightly. "I know you aren't ready for that. Honestly, I'm sure I am either. I was thinking, maybe I could spend a few nights here, we kind of get used to each other."

"Why aren't you ready?"

Colby blinked, tilting his head to one side. "Um—Avery, I've never been with a virgin before. I don't want to hurt you, because I'm stupid or clumsy." He took her hands, scooting closer. "Our first time is a big deal for me, too. It will be like my first time all over again, because I get to share it with you. I'm not the most experienced guy around, but I want to explore more with you. Just you."

©2021 Dellani Oakes

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Game Junkies ~ A Love in the City Romance by Dellani Oakes ~ Part 22

He squeezed Avery's hand as she was sitting to his right. She squeezed Colby's and it went around the circle of friends, ending with Gavin. He smiled, eyes slightly teared.

"That was lovely," Avery said. She stood up and kissed his cheek.

Alice did the same. "We've got to find you a girl," she said. "Because you're so darn sweet."

"Men don't want to be sweet," the men intoned, as if they'd rehearsed it.

Alice's eyes grew large and she started laughing. A glance at Avery told her that this was a common response.

"I tell them that sometimes, just to get under their skin," Avery said. "Works like a charm."

"But sometimes guys are sweet. Isn't it manly enough?" Alice asked.

"We prefer to be called considerate, thoughtful or kind," Stan replied.

"We also like hot, sexy and studly," Gavin added with a wink.

"How about sneaky, sarcastic and stubborn?" Avery added, picking up the potato salad for seconds. "You leave those out every time we have this discussion. Now, it's Colby's turn to add that though you may be sneaky, sarcastic and stubborn, at least you aren't stupid. We have this discussion a lot."

"At least we aren't snarky, insensitive or sadistic," Colby added with a smirk.

"I can tell this bunch is going to keep me hopping," Alice declared.

"Does that mean they haven't convinced you they're totally crazy, and you'll go out with me again?" Stan asked hopefully.

Alice leaned over and kissed him. "Yes, it means I'll go out with you again. This is the most fun I've had in years."

The men cleaned up after the meal and turned on the dishwasher. They made another pot of coffee and pulled out Avery's treasured copy of Cards Against Humanity. She'd found it at a neighbor's yard sale for a dollar and talked the woman down to fifty cents. It was nearly brand new.

"They decided they didn't like it," Avery explained. "Uber religious. Why they bought it in the first place, who knows?"

"I love this game," Gavin said, dealing the cards. "It's so sick!"

"Gavin usually wins," Stan warned.

Alice's eyes twinkled. "He hasn't played me yet," she said, adding an evil laugh that ended in a giggle.

They played for nearly two hours. Though Gavin gave it a valiant effort, he tied with Alice rather than being the definitive winner. They cleared up the game. Colby made a huge bowl of popcorn while Alice and Avery went through her DVD collection and chose a movie.

"You've got The Big Lebowski? I totally love this movie!"

"Same yard sale," Avery said. "Again, why would super religious people even buy that movie?"

"I think it was gag gifts," Gavin added, dropping to the floor. He grabbed a pillow off the couch and lay on the carpet. "People like that would never buy this movie themselves."

"Could be right," Avery agreed.

They all found places to sit and the movie began. They laughed throughout, yelling their favorite lines at the screen. When the movie was over, they thought about dinner, but decided it would require a grocery store run. The women made a menu and grocery list, the men pooled their cash and did paper, rock, scissors to see who had to go to the store. None of them particularly liked shopping. Stan lost. Gavin agreed to go with him. They finally talked Colby into going too.

The women went to the kitchen to prepare what they could without the groceries.

When they were gone, Alice laughed. "Why do they go to the trouble of playing that silly game if they all go anyway?"

"Who knows? They do it every time. It's extremely rare that you get just one or two of them."

"Are they triplets separated at birth?"

"Sometimes, I wonder. They are closer than brothers. I know this because they all have brothers. They hardly see them. Only on major holidays, when under strict orders from their mothers. I'm always under orders to be at Colby's. His mom is pretty cool."

They talked a lot, getting to know one another as they bonded over cooking. Neither girl had ever had a close female friend. It was fun and exciting to find one another.

"We've got to do a sleep over sometime," Alice said.

"We could overdose on chocolate and junk food and play video games. We'd have a blast."

"Maybe next weekend? I don't have to work."

"Sounds great. The guys will want to do something."

"Then we'll play it by ear."

The men arrived a few minutes later with groceries in tow. They had, amazingly, bought everything on the list and improvised very little with impulse buys. They brought more root beer, but had also purchased a few other beverages, all non-alcoholic.

"Do you ever drink wine?" Alice asked as they put things away.

"My mom's an alcoholic," Avery said. "I don't drink."

"And we don't either—at least not around her," Stan said. "Out of respect."

©2021 Dellani Oakes

Thursday, May 12, 2022

Game Junkies ~ A Love in the City Romance by Dellani Oakes ~ Part 21

"Well, first time for everything." He sipped his coffee, cradling the cup for warmth."You got some weird new neighbors, dude," he said to Colby. "Couple of them were going by, said hello and I asked if I could come inside for a second to warm up. They looked at me like I had the plague and shut the fucking door in my face. Thing is, there were other guys coming and going almost the entire time I was here. One of them came up and asked me where he could score some shit. One or two saw me and looked all paranoid. They turned around and left. Like I was a fucking narc or something."

"They probably thought so," Colby said. "I don't know them, man. It was empty a few days ago. Now, all of a sudden, it's Grand Central."

"Oh, great. There goes the neighborhood," Gavin said with a shrug.

Once Gavin was warmer, Colby loaned him a jacket and they went to his place to get his keys and coat. Afterward, they went to Alice's apartment to deal with her car.

"Why didn't you just call instead of wandering around?" Stan asked as they put the jumper cables on Alice's battery.

"We would have come and let you in."

"I didn't think about it. You're usually home."

He had a point. I was rare that they were both gone at the same time, unless they were together. Then, Gavin was with them as well.

Gavin stayed in Colby's car. They didn't even want him around when they were jumping the car. He wasn't allowed to gun the motor or anything. Sullen, he waited for them to finish.

"I don't know why I can't help," he muttered when Colby got in his car. "I'm not a complete incompetent."

"Stan is being overly careful. It's not his car. It's not that we don't trust you, Gavin—"

"No, it's exactly that. And you shouldn't. I can't be trusted with dick." He glanced away, staring out the window as he bit his thumb knuckle.

Colby felt bad, but he also knew that Gavin was a little too flighty to have operating electrical devices. He was a great driver, and could fix all manner of mechanical things in their cars, but he couldn't be trusted with electricity, whatever the form. They weren't even likely to ask him to replace batteries in electronic devices because events usually took an abrupt, and unhappy, turn.

The car finally started with a roar. They let it idle for a few minutes before disconnecting the cables. Once that was accomplished, Stan drove out to the highway and they went a few miles down the road with Colby following. They made a turn near their favorite fast food joint, so Colby gave Avery a call.

"You two hungry yet? We're up here at Rascally Tom's."

"Oh, I was going to fix lunch," Avery said, sounding a little upset.

"Rather have your cooking!" Colby said, knowing the other men would agree. "Can we get anything while we're out?"

"I've got everything. I was going to do hot dogs and beans and Alice has a killer recipe for potato salad. We've got the taters cooking and she's chopping onions as we speak."

"Okay. Sounds great to me. Do we have enough beer?"

"We could use another six," she replied.

"I'll pick some up."

"Great! See you soon!"

Gavin had already texted Stan about the meal. They stopped at a nearby grocery store and picked up some IBC as well as fruit salad and dessert. Avery loved turtle pie, and could rarely afford it. A quick call assured them that Alice liked it too. Stan bought that. Gavin covered the IBC and Colby bought the fruit salad.

Contributions in hand, they headed back to Avery's. Her apartment was snug, but had a little more space and more chairs than the men had. Besides, that's where the food was. The guys rarely had anything that would constitute a meal.

Avery and Alice greeted them with hugs and kisses. Gavin was stunned, as well as pleased. He was glad to see Avery so happy. She positively glowed. This was the Avery he always knew was there, hiding under the baggy clothing and outrageously colored hair.

She was wearing a black tank top with a clinging, pink sweater over it. Her jeans fit nicely, following the contours of her legs. He saw more of Avery in five seconds than he'd seen in five years. Alice was similarly dressed, only her sweater was off white and her tank top gray. He couldn't help being a little jealous of his friends. He'd never had a steady woman, though he had dated a little. His experience consisted of kissing and some awkward petting. He wasn't good with people, women in particular, and he regretted his lack of social skills. His friends tried to help him, but they were so out of sync themselves, they weren't much assistance. Having them around, though, made all the difference.

"A meal fit for a king," Gavin declared as they sat down to eat.

"Colby, do you want to offer blessing?" Avery asked.

"May I?" Gavin volunteered.

"Sure." Avery blinked at him. Gavin rarely volunteered.

They bowed their heads, taking hands.

"Dear Lord," Gavin began. His was a semi-religious family. "We thank you for this great meal and good friends to share it with. Thank you for sending us Alice, cause she's smokin' hot—" He laughed when Stan punched his shoulder. "I'm kidding. She's a lot of fun to be around, even if she is taller than me, and dating my friend. But it's because of friends like mine that I'm so grateful to be here today. Thank you, Lord, for all these good people. Amen."

©2021 Dellani Oakes

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Game Junkies ~ A Love in the City Romance by Dellani Oakes ~ Part 20

"Flattered, I guess?" She shrugged. "It was strange to think I'd attract that much attention. I didn't

always look this good. I had a weight problem. Once I got to my junior year in college, got away from my mother...." She rolled her eyes. "I slimmed down."

"But the boobs are impressive. Sorry if that's a weird thing to say, but wow. I wish I had half that."

Alice giggled. "Oh, there's some foundation, but what makes them impressive is Victoria's Secret."

"I don't think Victoria's entire arsenal could make me look like that," Avery said, staring at her own chest.

"Avery, if you had my boobs on your body, you'd freaking fall over. You're perfect for your frame. I'm five ten and I've been this height since seventh grade!"

It was Avery's turn to giggle. "Shit, me too. Only I'm five one."

Alice smiled, her eyes tearing slightly. "I never had a really good female friend," she admitted quietly. "It's so cool to talk to a smart girl, who understands."

"I've always been smarter than most of my contemporaries. That's another reason I hang around this crew. They're dumb as dirt, in some respects, but smarts out the ass. They can hold up the heavy end of a conversation."

"I really like Stan," Alice admitted. "He's smart and cute and funny. I saw him in the line before he got to my register. Hard to miss with him being a yard taller than everyone. I kept looking at him, wondering who that delicious man was. When he walked up and asked me out, I about peed myself."

"I didn't think he had the courage to ask a complete stranger out. Sometimes, he can hardly say two words without stopping. Totally cool."

Alice leaned closer, whispering. "Do you think he's—experienced?"

Avery blushed, drawing back a little. "No idea. I think so—a little bit. These guys aren't exactly Casanova, you know? Colby's had a few girlfriends over the years. Stan, a couple, too.... Colby will be my first, when we get to that point."

"Really?" Alice grabbed her hand again, squeezing as she leaned closer. "Me too," she whispered.

Stunned, Avery sat with her mouth open. She couldn't believe Alice's admission. In her, she saw perfection, confidence. To find that her new friend was as insecure and inexperienced as she, was quite a revelation.

"All the girls I went to school with, they started so young," Alice continued. "I was always the one that no guy wanted to go out with. Here, look." She pulled a picture from her wallet. "Mom made me dye my hair darker, because she said that blondes weren't taken seriously."

The picture was of a chubby faced girl with a bad complexion, braces and thick glasses. Her hair was a hideous shade of washed out brown that made her look pale and brought out the freckles in her face. It was frizzy with short, unmanageable curls but there were traces of Alice there, mostly in the eyes. It was hard to see that it was the same person.

"That's me as a senior. I got to college, I let my hair grow out and my true color show. I got contacts, found a better line of makeup products, and shed an entire person just by eating right and exercising."

"You look so great! Just amazing."

"You're so lucky," Alice said, wistfully. "You're not fat, and you've got gorgeous skin."

"I had braces and bad hair," Avery admitted. "I don't have many pictures. I grew up in foster care."

"I had a mother who suffered from Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy."

"Isn't that the thing where someone projects illness on another person? Makes everyone think they're sick?"

"Yes! I was in and out of the emergency room so many times, I lost count. My dad left when I was a kid and Mom didn't deal with it well—at all!"

"Wow, we both had some shit, huh? But now, we've got each other, and two fantastic guys."

"Yes, we do. We're going to be great friends."

Stan and Colby drove to Colby's apartment. Gavin was pacing, slapping his arms. He was wearing a T-shirt and jeans. His lips had a blue tinge. Occasionally, he hopped up and down to keep the blood circulating. Colby opened his apartment quickly, bringing his friend inside to warm up. He threw the afghan around his shoulders and started coffee.

"How did you end up outside without your coat or keys?" Stan asked.

Gavin dropped his head. "You'll think it's stupid."

"I always think you're stupid," Stan quipped. "What makes this different?"

Chuckling, Gavin sat on the couch. "I heard something outside. It sounded like someone calling for help. So I went out to see. Only it was just some kids playing tag. But the door swung shut and boom. Locked out."

He accepted the cup of coffee gratefully.

"Then it's a good thing we have keys to your place," Stan said.

"Which is why we have keys to each other's places," Gavin said. "Because we're all fuckwits who lock ourselves out regularly."

"Just not usually in the cold without a coat," Colby pointed out.

©2021 Dellani Oakes

Thursday, May 05, 2022

Game Junkies ~ A Love in the City Romance by Dellani Oakes ~ Part 19

"And FTPA?" Alice asked, her voice layered with concern.

"Failure to Pay Attention," Stan concluded. "And I'm sorry, Alice, I suffer from that too."

"But not as bad as some people," Avery said, giving Colby an evil eye.

Alice's eyes widened. "Wow, you all have known one another so long, I feel kind of out of the loop."

Avery patted her hand. "It's okay. Hang with me, I'll get you up to speed. That's if you intend to stay with our unseemingly large, somewhat addled, genius friend. He's ungainly, but mostly harmless." She smiled at Stan. "Honestly, he's a great guy and, next to Colby, he's my favorite."

"Does anyone even like Gavin?" Alice asked, shocked.

"We love him! We just know what he's like," Colby replied. "He's a great guy, who's so damn smart, he can't tie his own shoes. Seriously," he said when he was Alice's disbelief. "He wears Velcro." He wiggled a foot at her. His hightops were neatly laced and tied.

"No wonder he's like that. Poor guy." Alice shook her head. "He's lucky he has you guys. I have a brother like that. He's so smart, he's dumb. He hasn't got friends like you looking after him."

They all got somewhat subdued. Colby's phone rang bringing them out of their reverie. He looked at the screen, grinning.

"Guess who?" He answered. "Hiya, Gav. Sup?"

"Where are you? You're not home. Stan's not home. I locked myself out again and I'm on foot. I had to take the stinking bus to your place! What the fuck?"

"We're at Avery's."

"Oh, come on! That's like ten miles."

"It's three. Don't worry, I'll come get you. Sit tight."

"Okay, but hurry, please. I left my jacket in the house—with my keys in the pocket."

"Not even asking why," Colby said. "Be there soon."

"Thanks. Bye."

"Be right back. Wonder Boy locked himself out. He's freezing ass at my place."

"I'll come with you," Stan volunteered. "We can get my cables when we're there."

"Good idea. Ladies, want to come?"

Avery snorted. "While you all go do manly things? I'll pass. Alice?"


Colby started toward the door, then came rapidly back to Avery. He stood toe to toe with her, gazing down expectantly.

"What?" She glared up at him.

"Can I have a kiss before I brave the freezing cold?"

Avery blushed, laughing. "We're gonna have to work on these relationship skills, huh?" She stood on tiptoe, kissing him goodbye.

Stan eyed Alice expectantly. She grabbed his belt loop, pulling him toward her. She gave him a quick kiss before shoving him away with a smile. Grinning like a little kid on Christmas, he followed Colby. Once the door closed, Alice bounced, taking Avery's hands as she squealed.

"Oh, my freaking God, he's so cute! Absolutely adorable! And tall! You have no idea," she said.

Avery chuckled. "Nope, every guy seems so tall to me. Stan is more or less in the same category as trees. Colby is a ladder. Gavin is more along the lines of a tall stool."

Alice laughed, hugging Avery's shoulders. "I like this group so much. I'm going to enjoy it here."

Avery found herself smiling, pleased to have a female friend for the first time. They finished cleaning up the kitchen and sat down in the living room with coffee. Both women sat with their feet curled under them, shoes tumbled on the floor.

"How long have you can Colby been dating?" Alice sipped her coffee, waiting expectantly.

"We officially started yesterday."

"Really? I thought you'd been together forever."

"We've been friends forever, in love with each other for years—only now, he finally figured it out. He suffers from the failure to pay attention thing, too."

"Is that just guys, or what?"

"Seems to be, at least with this bunch. They are the best people I know, but they're kinda slow in the social skills department. Once they finally catch on—" She smiled wistfully. "They're great. I love Stan and Gavin like brothers. There's just something so special about Colby." She sighed happily, then started laughing. "God, I sound like such a girl!"

Alice nearly spewed her coffee. Laughing, she grabbed Avery's hand. "You haven't noticed that before? The tits weren't a clue?"

Avery giggled. "You know how I finally got Colby's attention? I flashed my tits."

Alice burst out laughing. "No shit! Full on skin?"

"No. I had on a T-shirt." She told her new friend the particulars. "I thought he was gonna bust out of his pants. His eyes bugged out, and he just stood there—drooling."

"I know why all the guys showed up at the store yesterday," Alice said shyly. "Stan told me about texting them my picture."

"How do you feel about that?"

©2021 Dellani Oakes

Tuesday, May 03, 2022

Game Junkies ~ A Love in the City Romance by Dellani Oakes ~ Part 18

Stan came in, grinning. He pulled Colby into an unexpected hug. Avery got the same treatment. He introduced Alice, who gave each of them a hug too. Surprisingly, Avery didn't get angry. Usually, that kind of breach of her personal space upset her. Instead, she ushered Alice into her tiny kitchen.

"This is so nice!" Alice said sincerely. "My kitchen is a hole. Three cabinets, one drawer and a broom cupboard. I put shelves in it and use it as a pantry."

"Thanks. The guys got me set up with the pegboards or I'd be screwed." Avery pointed to the wall to her left. Colby and Stan had painted and put up some pegboards so she had room for her kitchen implements.

"It was Stan's idea," Colby said from the doorway. "He's pretty handy with tools."

Stan chuckled, nudging him. Avery frowned, pursing her lips as she shook her head. The men burst out laughing. Alice looked on, puzzled.

"Sorry. It's what passes for male humor," Avery explained. "I've learned to avoid the words dick, Johnson, woody and tool."

"Boy, that would suck if you had to say something like Old Dick Johnson carved a Woody puppet with his tool," Alice said with a grin.

Avery tapped her knuckles, laughing. "Yes, it would. Fortunately, that doesn't come up often."

"But other things do," Stan added, strolling to the coffee pot.

Avery punched him before he got a mug from the cupboard.

"Ouch! What's that for? I just said—" he considered what he'd said. "Oh, I see. I didn't mean it that way, Avery, but that's pretty funny."

She raised an unfriendly eyebrow, but laughed.

"The food smells great," Colby interjected before conversation could degenerate further.

"It sure does," Alice added. "Do I detect a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg in the pancakes?"

"You do, good nose," Avery said with a grin.

They talked a few more minutes about the food as they served it to Avery's small table. The men offered to help, but judiciously stayed out of the way when Avery told them no. Once they were all seated, Colby offered blessing, at Avery's command. She was always very particular about that. One of her foster families had been very religious. Bits of their teachings stuck. Unfortunately, they'd been transferred to another state and that's when she'd moved in with the Polks. His blessing pleased her and she started passing the dishes. The four of them chatted over their meal, finding out more about Alice.

"I've lived here a few months. I came here to work on my masters in game design."

"No kidding?" Colby grinned. "That's Stan's area too. What aspect?"

"I do storylines and concepts. I'm good with programming, but it's not my strong suit. I have some awesome ideas, but I can't get them functioning."

Avery, whose chin was lowered toward her plate, gave a Lauren Bacall look, eyebrows raised. Her dark eyes flickered from Alice to Stan. Only Colby saw it. He got the idea and winked.

"You know, Alice, if Stan hasn't mentioned it, he's a pretty good programmer. One might go so far as to say—genius."

Stan blushed, his fork halfway to his mouth. He'd never say it himself, but it was true. He'd been working with computer programming since he was in middle school. He got into an accelerated class in high school, took college classes during his junior and senior years and graduated with a weighted GPA of 4.6. With his associates already complete, he started his college junior year at 18. Now, he was nearly done with his masters. All of this, Avery and Colby felt compelled to tell Alice.

Her blue eyes grew wider as they spoke. "No kidding? Oh, my gosh, me too!"

Colby and Avery exchanged a pleased glance across the table. She stood to clear her dirty dishes. Colby joined her. Stan offered to help, but he and Alice were still eating. Avery told him to stay put.

"Pretty cool," she whispered as they rinsed dishes and loaded the washer.

"Very cool." They did a secret knuckle bump.

There was a lull in the conversation at the table as the two of them finished with the dishes.

"Alice, what's wrong with your car?" Avery asked.

"I left my stupid lights on," she groused. "My other car, the lights shut off when the engine went off. This one doesn't, and I don't think the alarm is working. I wasn't paying attention and left them on all night." She pouted.

"Jumper cables," Stan said.

"I've got two sets. One I loan to Stan," Colby said with a smirk. "Because he'll return them. The others are junkers for Gavin."

"Does he give anything back?" Alice asked.

The three friends did a three way laugh, shaking their heads nearly in unison.

"Gavin has this ADHD problem," Avery began.

"No, I beg to differ," Stan interrupted. "He has an ADMP and FTPA problem."

Alice frowned. "I'm not familiar with either of those."

"It's our own designation," Colby explained. "ADMP means—"

"Attention Deficit Moron Problem," Avery completed.

"That," Colby pointed at her, grinning.

©2021 Dellani Oakes

Old Time Religion ~ A Love in the City Romance by Dellani Oakes – Part 25

Obi took a moment to compare the sisters. Frankie had dark brown hair, and blue eyes. Though their coloring was different, they clearly were...