Trey entered the club with a sense of excitement and trepidation. The grand reopening was something he’d been looking forward to attending. After the intense rescue mission and final confrontation over in Wales, he relished the idea of life returning to normal. He didn’t question how his definition of what that meant now included hanging out with aliens in an exclusive place with mostly naked go-go boys and rooms where a guy could get his freak on.
The club was packed, all its members apparently coming after months of renovations due to the kitchen fire. Although the whole event had been staged as a cover, the damage had been real. Alex had taken the opportunity to redo the entire first two floors. Trey was looking forward to seeing the results and enjoying being there without being on the clock as a cop.
He was, however, on edge. Earlier in the day, he’d received a short, polite text request from Harry to come and speak with him at Trey’s convenience sometime that night. The alien doctor had rarely communicated directly with him before. It shouldn’t cause any alarm, yet it did. There was a simple reason for that. Demi. Harry was the hybrid boy’s father, and things had gotten pretty intense and weirdly intimate between them during the rescue. Not only had Demi continued to show his devotion to Trey, but Trey had also lost his own internal struggle to hide his feelings for Demi.
If he thought about it—and he did constantly—he could still feel Demi’s fangs sunk deep in his wrist, sucking in his blood for life-saving nourishment. He didn’t regret a thing that he’d done in Wales, would do it again in a heartbeat. It was the aftermath that haunted him. He hadn’t known how to act or what to do once they’d been safely back, first at Malcolm’s castle then in Boston. His conflicting feelings for the half-alien man-child hadn’t gotten any easier to deal with. And now Harry wanted to talk. About what was the question that had plagued Trey for hours.
His brooding was disturbed by Karl smacking his arm. “Man, this place is hopping.”
They’d come together because his partner had asked that of him. Straight as an arrow, Karl wasn’t exactly comfortable in such an unabashedly gay space. But he was in deep with the club’s bar manager, Kitty, and he welcomed any excuse to spend time with her. Trey figured they’d done a lot of that when they’d mutually held down the fort during the Wale’s adventure. What, if anything, had transpired between the seemingly mismatched couple hadn’t come up voluntarily from Karl. Trey didn’t feel comfortable raising the issue, either.
“Not surprising, given how long it’s been closed. And there’s nothing like it in Boston to take the clientele away.”
There was a short line of men approaching, where they showed their membership cards to a pretty boy who managed to flirt and scrutinize with equal skill. Trey started to pull out his own wallet as his turn came, but Val materialized out of the shadows and intercepted him.
“No need for that, brother.” The massive guy with the don’t-fuck-with-me Mohawk greeted both Trey and Karl with surprising warmth.
They each went through the ritual of hand-clasping and back thumping of the typical modern American tough guy before Val led them past the checkpoint.
“We’ve got a VIP table set up for you right by the dance floor.” Val glanced back at them. “It’s permanently yours, actually. We, ah, hope you both come anytime you feel like it.”
Although Alex had extended free membership to them both previously, Trey hadn’t felt comfortable imposing on the generosity. Plus, he hadn’t wanted to give Demi any wrong ideas. Now that he was muddled in his own thinking about the boy, he had more of an incentive to stay away. Still, the fact that the Stelalux clan thought well enough of both him and Karl to give them a reserved table was sweetly endearing. They weren’t merely tolerated by the aliens or useful tools for them. They genuinely liked them, apparently.
“Thanks,” he said over the din of the music. “We appreciate it. Don’t we, Karl?”
“Yeah,” his partner said, craning his neck around the room. “Although no offense, I’m more of a sit at the bar kind of guy.”
Of course you are. “None taken. Go ahead,” he replied, giving him a gentle shove.
He shook his head ruefully at Val. “He’s never going to give up there.”
Val’s gaze followed Karl’s progress across the room. “Oddly, I think he has every reason to keep at it.”
“Really?” Was it possible that the stern and scary Kitty was softening toward the puppyish, yet determined, Karl?
Val shrugged. “Stranger things…” He kept going, clearing a path in the throng of partying men, his imposing figure parting the lesser humans without effort. He stopped at a small, two-seater table right at the edge of the dance floor. There was a ‘reserved’ sign literally embedded in the dark wooden top.
“Here you go, Duncan,” the bouncer said with a flourish of his arm. “Front row seat. The show’s about to start. I hope you enjoy it. Mackie and the boys have been working hard on the choreography.”
“Thanks.” Trey sat in the nearest chair. “I’m sure I will.”
Val gave him a squeeze on his shoulder before leaving.
Alone with his thoughts, Trey started worrying about his meeting with Harry again. He took in the room as he did so. There wasn’t a huge difference from the old décor. Everything was still mostly black and silver with red accents and more deep purple ones. He knew these were colors that resonated with the aliens. Black was standard for warriors, while the red represented blood, naturally. The purple echoed the hue of their irises. And silver? Well, apparently that was the queen. At least, that was what Emil had told him. Trey hadn’t dared ask any follow-up questions. The look of reverence in the alien’s eyes at the mere mention of their ultimate leader was too intense for casual conversation.
The whole space was still the epitome of luxury, regardless. Everything was shiny and plush. He’d felt out of place when he’d first entered the club months ago while investigating a murder. Now, he felt comfortable. The velvet seat embraced his backside with the softness of a cloud. The muted lighting managed to make everything appear sexy. There were still platforms with stripper poles at the four corners of the dance floor. Boys already gyrated around to the delight of the patrons. There was some new talent, as well, and he couldn’t help but appreciate the beauty on display.
An ice-cold glass of beer appeared in front of his eyes. “Here you go, honey. Kitty thought you’d want to start with this.” A gorgeous boy with mocha skin, chocolate eyes and wearing only shiny silver boy-shorts batted his eyelashes as he put the beer down. “If you want anything else, I’ll be close by.” He turned and sauntered away with a swish of his narrow hips.
Trey didn’t have more than a second to appreciate the sight before Kitty’s voice boomed over the sound system. She asked for everyone to clear the dance floor because the show was about to begin. This was new—actual routines by the go-go boys. He’d caught bits and pieces of their practice sessions during their mission. He knew it was going to be good and a way to take his mind off his impending ‘talk’ with Harry. He settled back with his beer at his lips as the overhead lights dimmed and the men’s conversations dropped off.
The raucous alternative rock music cut out and the opening strains of something more classic started. It took him a second to realize it was U2’s Mysterious Ways. Spotlights flared on and four boys strutted out onto the dance floor from the back. They were modestly attired compared to the ones still at the poles, wearing white, ribbed, sleeveless T-shirts and ripped jeggings. Their feet were bare, but their hips were draped with scraps of plaid. Mackie and Demi pulled a few paces ahead of Quinn and Jase as they all began their coordinated routine. The boys on the poles began to gyrate around, also in sync with each other.
None if it mattered, of course. Trey’s focus was on one boy only—Demi. The others were only so much fluttering around the main attraction as far as he was concerned. And that hybrid boy’s gaze homed in on him in a millisecond, too. As he pranced his way forward, Demi kept Trey a captive by his attention. No matter what way the boy twisted and turned, he always landed his stare back on him. Trey couldn’t have looked away if the club caught on fire again.
The boys’ efforts brought the house down with cheers and clapping. His beer forgotten, Trey leaned forward as if he could get an even better view. Alex and the others had been generous with the position of the table. There was no way that he could be closer to the action or see the dance routine any better. Still, he tried, scooting his chair so close to the brass railing that his knees banged into it. He then gripped it with sweaty palms and white knuckles.
All the boys were good, but Demi outshone them with an inhuman grace that not even Mackie could mimic. He practically floated across the floor, his feet carrying him so smoothly that it was almost as if he didn’t touch the ground. Trey’s gaze landed on the mesmerizing swing of the boy’s hips. He wasn’t so far possessed that he didn’t notice the pattern of the plaid draped there. He’d assumed Mackie wore his own family’s tartan. The other boys, who knew? But, the pattern and colors hugging Demi jolted a deep memory in Trey.
It’s the Duncan plaid.
Demi was honoring Trey’s family in a way that caused a welling of possessiveness deep within him. It left him breathless. This was his boy, whether he willed it or not. Demi believed it to be so, and God help him, Trey did as well. His cock hardened and he didn’t even bother to try to convince it to stand down. Right when Bono admonished the boy in the song to get down on his knees, the dancers dropped in unison. With thighs spread, they threw back their heads and made an O face. That brought the house down, and Trey nearly came right in his pants like a teenager. Then they ripped their tops in two from collar to hem and tossed the shredded remains to the audience. Of course, Demi sent his sailing directly toward Trey. He caught the scrap of fabric and clenched his fingers around it.
The newly-bared chests were painted in colorful symbols. All the men around him undoubtedly thought they were looking at nonsense markings to accentuate the boys’ toned chests. But Trey knew differently. That was the alien script, although what it said or meant, he had no idea. It only served to highlight Demi’s alien nature, and while it should have scared him, it didn’t. Nothing could put him off his desire for Demi at this point.
As the show came to an end, the club members tossed money onto the floor. The boys blew kisses to their audience while scooping up their earnings. They all managed to dodge grabbing hands at the same time. In comparison, the boys on the poles jumped off their stages and worked the crowd for tips and cuddles. Naturally, the main four were not going to expose themselves to the kind of attention that could lead their alien lovers and husband to having murderous fits—or in the case of Demi, an avenging father.
Not if I get there first. That possessive thought reared up and he disturbingly didn’t even try to tamp it down again. He even bared his teeth at a guy who leaned over the rail in an effort to make contact with Demi.
Trey needn’t have bothered. Demi easily side-stepped the grabby hand and sidled up to the rail by Trey. He grinned coyly. “Did you enjoy the show, Sergeant Hottie?”
By way of answer, Trey took out his wallet and liberated the Benjamin he’d put there earlier in the day. He’d known about the dancing in advance, and while Demi had access to money Trey could only dream of, he wanted to show his appreciation. It was the only safe way he knew how to. He held it up.
With his smile firmly in place, Demi gripped the railing with one hand, while plucking the bill from Trey’s grasp with the other. Their fingers touched for a brief moment, the feel of it electrifying. At least for Trey it was. His dick jerked and his face heated. He could tell from Demi’s expression that he knew what effect he had. He morphed his pretty lips into a kissing purse as he leaned closer.
Trey froze with indecision. He wanted to press his mouth to the boy’s, to take what was being offered. It would be like playing with fire. He knew it would, yet the impulse to take and taste and savor was overwhelming. His ass was half off his chair before he realized what he was doing.
It all changed in a second. Demi’s expression fell and he pulled back. It took Trey a moment to realize that someone had come to stand behind him. That’s where Demi’s eyes were now fixed. And it didn’t take a lot of thought or imagination to know who it was. Sweat broke out all over Trey’s body as he sat back and looked up.
“Hi, Harry.” He tried for a polite smile but feared he failed miserably.
Surprisingly, Demi’s father didn’t grab him by the throat and snap his neck. He didn’t even shoot him a menacing look. Instead, he inclined his head with a mere tightening of his lips. “Good evening, Sergeant Duncan.”
The man’s attention shifted back to his son. “Demi, go back to the dressing room now before the patrons get the wrong idea about your—availability.”
Surprisingly, Demi didn’t so much as frown at the order. “Yes, Papa.” He batted his eyelashes at Trey, however, before he twirled around and practically skipped away.
Trey took the opportunity to down a good amount of his beer before facing Harry again. “Um, you wanted to talk?”
Harry watched until his son had left the room before replying. “Yes, if you would please come up to our apartment. This is too public a place and Lucien insists on joining us.”
Okay, that added an element of concern. As scary as Harry could be, his human husband put the capital F in the word fierce when it came to their son. Trey figured the goings-on at Dracul’s castle must have been conveyed to the man and he had a few choice warnings he wanted to personally give Trey. Not that he could blame the guy. Demi was precious and in need of protection.
He took another slug of his beer before putting it down and standing. “Yeah, sure. Lead the way.”
He walked through the club in Harry’s wake like a man condemned. It took a few seconds for him to remember he still clutched the ruins of Demi’s T-shirt. He stuffed it into his pocket, knowing it was still visible but unwilling to drop it. Fuck it. If Harry and Lucien didn’t like this obvious show of devotion, they could kill him for all he cared. It would be worth it.