Last week, as you'll recall, Dustin ended up at Roy's house in the middle of the night, not knowing where else to go, and Roy let him stay, promising him to help him. Two lonely men... is it just a matter of time until they realize they might be attracted to each other? See what's happening in this week's chapter of The Sheriff. Don't forget to visit the other Briefers and see what they're up to! Their links follow my tale! Enjoy!
The Sheriff #26 (7.3)
Roy was never one for sleeping in. There was generally too much to do to waste his time in bed. Today was no exception. When his phone alarm went off, he automatically shut it off and sat up, clearing the cobwebs out of his head. But something in the back of his mind kept nagging at him. Something urgent. But what was it?
And then he remembered. Dustin was here. He’d come to Roy’s house in the middle of the night with quite a story. A hook-up gone horribly wrong. Some slick guy who’d coerced Dustin into participating in an illegal activity—and was blackmailing him into doing it again. Roy would definitely have to fill Harlan in on what he’d learned, as he had the feeling this would explain at least some of the recent burglaries in and around Tucker Falls, if not all of them. But first things first, and that was making sure Denver was out of harm’s way until they sorted everything out and took down the guys who were doing this.
If it wasn’t for bad luck, Dustin would have no luck at all, he couldn’t help thinking. A wave of sympathy for the blond suddenly surged through Roy, surprising him. He’d never particularly liked him before, not with all the trouble he tried to cause between Lee and Marshall. Apparently the boy didn’t know that no meant no.
On the other hand, he seemed more than aware that he’d fucked up pretty badly, and was trying to get his life together. Couldn’t fault a guy for not being perfect. God knows Roy was no saint himself.
So what was the plan? He shuffled down the hall to the bathroom, and afterward headed toward the kitchen. A pot of coffee would hit the spot. Probably wouldn’t hurt Dustin any either.
He glanced into the living room as he passed by. Dustin lay on his back, still asleep. The blanket Roy had given him was draped over his legs, leaving his chest bare. Roy hadn’t realized before how nicely developed Dustin was.
Stop staring. He’s a kid. And he’s a he.
Roy roused himself and continued into the kitchen. Just went to show it had been too long since he’d gotten any, if he was getting horny over another man. Not that there was anything wrong with that. He had no problem with Lee and Marshall as a couple, or any of their other gay friends. But that wasn’t him. He wasn’t gay.
Yeah, he really needed to get laid. Soon.
His thoughts were mercifully interrupted by the unexpected appearance of Dustin in the doorway. Dressed in nothing but a pair of royal blue boxers, he ambled into the kitchen, yawning. Roy quickly averted his eyes, giving his attention to the coffee pot instead.
“Didn’t expect to see you up so soon,” Roy said. “Coffee’s almost ready.”
“What time is it?”
Roy heard a chair scraped across the floor. Turning, he saw Dustin had taken a seat at the small kitchen table. He glanced at his watch. “Just a few minutes after six.”
“Shit.” Dustin groaned. “I couldn’t really sleep, so I guess it doesn’t matter much anyway.”
“Sorry about the couch—”
“It wasn’t that. Just had too much on my mind.” He buried his face in his hands, arms propped on the table top. “Just been thinking about what a fuck-up I am.”
“Stop talking like that!” Dustin jerked his head up, startled. Roy had surprised even himself with his vehemence. “There’s no use in feeling sorry for yourself. What’s done is done. The important thing now is to fix it and move on.”
“How can you say that, knowing what I did?”
Dustin’s eyes met Roy’s. Roy hated that he looked so defeated, but he knew he couldn’t let him wallow in this trough of self-pity either. They had work to do, and he needed Dustin at his best. He was already starting to formulate a plan in his mind.
“Everybody does stupid shit sometimes. But you can get past that, if you want to. Do you want to?”
“Okay, then here’s what we’re going to do. We’re gonna go to the diner and grab some breakfast, then we’re going to Tucker Falls and talk to the sheriff.”
Dustin’s jaw dropped. “You’re turning me in? Seriously?” He started to inch his chair back, looking as though he might just bolt, notwithstanding his lack of clothing.
“Calm the hell down!” Roy snapped. Dustin froze. “I didn’t say that. We’re going to tell him what’s going on. I think, from what you told me last night, this Jordan asshole is responsible for some of these unsolved burglaries in Tucker Falls. So we’ll just take advantage of the fact that we have someone on the inside and put a stop to that.”
“You have someone on the inside?” Dustin frowned, his forehead puckering in thought. “Who…” Suddenly his eyes lit with understanding, as he realized what Roy meant.
“You mean me?” His voice almost squeaked out the last word.
“Yeah, but don’t worry. I’ll be backing you up every step of the way. We won’t have to worry about Denver for now, because you are going to cooperate with Jordan, so he’ll have no reason to hurt your cousin. Do you get it now?”
“You mean I’m going to help set him up?” Dustin said.
“Yep, that’s just what I mean.”
Dustin’s eyes gleamed with unexpected enthusiasm. “Then count me the fuck in.”
to be continued
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