Jacob watched Zeke dash through the rain toward the house and he was waiting with the door open and a towel in his hand.
"Do you need another towel?" He asked while his guest peeled off his soaking wet t-shirt as soon as he stepped over the threshold. Zeke, muttering a few choice curse words, took the towel and proceeded to dry off.
Jacob was trying hard not to gawk. The cowboy's torso was a stunning display of well-toned muscle and a tight six-pack of abs which would put a Men's Health magazine's cover model to shame.
"No, I don't think so," Zeke replied. "But, if you've got a spare shirt I could borrow, I'd appreciate it."
"Sure," he nodded, and then gestured to the fireplace in the farmhouse's living room area. "Why don't you step in front of the fire and dry off? You wouldn't want to catch a chill or anything."
Zeke thanked him as he slid off his boots, placing them beside Jacob's own by the front door. "I'll be back," Jacob said, then headed up the stairs to find a shirt, but once he stepped into the bedroom upstairs, he flopped down on the edge of the bed and speared his hands through his hair, drawing a deep breath.
For the first time in a long while, it felt as if his libido had been switched on. Cool it, man. There's no way a man like Zeke would be interested in him. Not that way. He shook his head, then rose from the bed and crossed to the dresser. Finding an extra large tee at the bottom of the drawer, he snatched it up, and then bounded back down the stairs.
"You're lucky I like big tees," he grinned tossing the rumpled shirt over to Zeke.
"Thanks!" The cowboy gave him a nod, and then grinned. "Now, how about shot or two of whiskey?"
"Sure thing. One whiskey coming up!" Jacob opened a bottle and poured a couple of fingers of the amber liquid into a glass.
He handed his guest the small glass of straight whiskey, then settled back on the sofa. The cowboy had already made himself comfortable. He'd taken off his Stetson and was kicked back in an oversized, padded chair near the fire.
Jacob's heart skipped a beat as Zeke slid into the oversized shirt.
"Wow!" He blinked.
Zeke glanced down at the logo on the front of the t-shirt, then grinned over at him. "It seems you picked up a souvenir from the livestock show we met at." Zeke chuckled, running a hand over the embossed design on the front of the shirt.
"Yeah, that's freaky. Go figure." Ironic, more like it.
As the rain pelted harder outside, Zeke took a few sips of whiskey. In the golden glow of the flames, Jacob quietly studied the man seated across from him. The cowboy was quite handsome, in a rugged, outdoorsy way from the firm features of his square jawline to the sensual draw of his mouth. And his eyes were so blue, like the wide open sky on a clear day. However, a faint, pale scar jaggedly ran down his left cheek, giving his good looks a dark edginess.
Jacob always admired men with blond hair, and Zeke was no exception. He figured Zeke spent his fair share of time outdoors because of the golden streaks sprinkled through his unruly crop of hair. For a man who had money and owned several livestock businesses, he appeared rough around the edges. Yet, Jacob sensed there was a softer side to the cowboy that few people knew about. He'd caught a glimpse of it when Zeke had offered his condolences outside. There was something gentle, yet somber in his expression which tugged at Jacob's heart.
It was as if the cowboy knew how he felt--confused and lonely.