It's been years since Ashton fell in love with a boy, but now that boy is a man who makes Ashton burn for more.
Ashton Clarke is a stripper. Some nights he dances on stage at the Nuts and Bolts, other nights he gives private dances to the club's rich patrons. When he is sent to give a private dance to a birthday boy and he turns around to see J.C. Sparta sitting there, he runs. Nobody from Ashton's past knows that his parents cut him off from the family fortune when he came out, forcing him to strip to make ends meet.
But that's not the only reason Ashton runs. J.C. Sparta was the one man he loved but never confessed it. When J.C comes back again and makes him an offer, how can he possibly refuse?
That was nothing to celebrate. If anything, he should be sulking and strangling anyone that uttered the phrase 'happy birthday' in that cheery, happy voice they normally used. He shoved from the bed, yanked the curtains together blocking out the rays of the sun, only to collapse once more to bed. He pulled the sheets over his head with every intention of staying where he was all day. His only plan for getting out of bed was to use the bathroom, go down the stairs, grab food and return to his refuge. But with his luck, he knew what was going to happen. His brother and best friend were going to come knocking on the door with presents and alcohol. He moaned again but this time the sun had nothing to do with it. With that thought, he hauled himself from the bed and scratching his ass with one hand and his hair with the other, he made his way into the bathroom, closing the door behind him.
Standing before the mirror, he peered down his throat, up his nose and then spent the next ten minutes going through his hair. He was trying to see if he could see the new grey hairs that had arrived over night but it was pointless. Shrugging, he turned on the water, stripped from his boxers and stepped under the downpour. The warm water soaked through his hair and drained down his body. He lifted his face upward and enjoyed the massage of the water's beat against his skin. That was how he was when the faint sound of his doorbell began peeling.
Shoving his hair from his face, JC turned off the water, wrapped a towel around his hips and descended the stairs. When he pulled the door open, he frowned at his younger brother.
"What happened to your keys?" JC wanted to know.
"I forgot them at home." Chaz walked by him into the house with a birthday bag in his hand. "So we're having a party tonight, here, for you."
JC groaned. "Didn't we discuss this? No parties!"
"We didn't discuss anything--you did." Chaz shrugged. "Besides, it's not really a party per se. It's just you, me, Kim and some food. Besides, I have to get back to the station before nine anyways so I won't be able to stay late."
"Good." JC grunted before turning back for the steps and his shower. "Sometimes I swear to God when I talk to you and Kim, I'm talking to myself."
"What's got your panties in a bunch? It's your birthday." Chaz followed him up a few of the steps.
"I turned thirty-five so forgive me if I don't feel like celebrating."
"Suit yourself--for now anyways." Chaz patted him on the shoulder then turned for the living room.
JC made a face and continued up the steps. He slammed the bathroom door after him but all thoughts of enjoying a long, pointless shower were gone. Now all he wanted to do was smash his fist through something. It seemed like only yesterday he was graduating high school and they were telling him that he was voted most likely to own an empire. Then university had just breezed by filled with broken hearts, discrimination and losing a friend to the war on terror. He had indeed grown in the business world as a mogul and had enough money to buy a few small islands. But JC was lonely. He could get any man he wanted because he had the money, power and apparently the looks to pull it off but he couldn't trust them.
The last guy he was with took pictures of him and sold them to the paparazzi.