Colton Greenleaf pulled his Jeep Wrangler Safari to a stop in front of the sprawling two-story ranch house butted up against the setting sun and inhaled deeply. Rest and relaxation in the cool mountain air was just what the doctor ordered--or in this case, the Physician's Assistant, Colton thought, smiling to himself. He planned to do just that for the next few weeks while he waited to hear if he got the job as a P.A. in the trauma centre at the Medical Centre of Louisiana at New Orleans on the outskirts of the French Quarter. Graduating with a four-point-oh from Duke University's Physician's Assistant programme and high scores on the PANCE, the Physician's Assistant National Certification Exam, in addition to his volunteer work, would hopefully help him secure the job.
For now, though, he had at least two full weeks of carefree idleness--something he hadn't enjoyed since he started college almost seven years ago. The only thing that would make the next few weeks better would be getting laid, but that wasn't about to happen when he was three hours from Casper, forty-five minutes to Cody and fifteen minutes to the small town of Buffalo Heart Springs, which boasted a human population of eighteen hundred and seventy-six, and a livestock population of easily five times that.
"Evening, Colt," a low male voice said. The sound was familiar and sent shivers through his body, straight to his cock. "Welcome home."
Damn. Of all the people he had to meet now. He should have realised that the man would be still here and wandering around. He willed his erection away and failed.
"Hiya, Hawk. And it's Colton." He prayed he sounded calmer than he felt. The older man had been the source of most of Colton's fantasies since Hawk had shown up on the ranch two weeks after his sixteenth birthday, slipping into Colton's thoughts during classes and late night study sessions even when he was on the other side of the country. Colton had a feeling that he could be on the other side of Pluto and still be affected by the gorgeous man. "Thanks, it's good to be here. Missed it." Missed you.
"Long drive?" Hawk asked, smiling though concern laced the older man's voice.
"Yes. Stayed at a hotel about an hour this side of Lincoln last night. Drove the last eleven or so hours today," Colton replied, trying to replay the lectures, scenery, the women in his cohort, anything to soften his erection. It was a losing battle. Hawk's voice thundered through his body and enveloped his cock, hardening it. Colt could only hope his parents weren't home. He'd forgotten to call when he'd stopped in Shoshoni for gas and food to let them know he would be home tonight.
Hawk raised an eyebrow. "You look beat, Colt, let me give you a hand."
"I was going to leave it until morning, but thanks."
"Go see your folks, I'll start bringing it to your room," Hawk suggested.
"But--you--you don't have to. I can get it. I just wanted to wait until morning when I could unpack and put things away," Colton stammered. He hated it when the ranch hands tried to help him out, it made him feel weak and inferior. He was pretty sure they didn't mean to, but it didn't change anything.
"If you don't want your mom's help in the morning, I suggest starting tonight," Hawk replied, giving him a knowing smile. "I won't even peek."
Damn. Hawk was right. There were some things he didn't want his mom to see. His box of toys, books, and magazines for starters. He hadn't quite worked out how to tell his folks he was gay. Staying away made it easy to ignore the topic, so did keeping his grades up. He'd barely been home in the last three years. Colton ran a hand through his hair, blew out a breath, shrugged into his backpack before lifting the large box out of the front seat, keeping it firmly out in front of him. Out of the corner of his eye, he watched Hawk's muscles flex as he grabbed a couple more boxes from the back seat.
"Thanks, Hawk, I appreciate it," he said, leading the way up to the house.