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A lot can happen between one December and another.

Paul Macy moved heaven and earth to get a reluctant Lee Kendall for his college roommate. Giving up his free-and-easy lifestyle for the sexy new guy on campus had been the easiest decision Paul had ever made. Walking away from Lee had been the hardest.

Now, years later, Lee Kendall’s made it to the top of his field by working hard, and playing harder in the right circles. Yet he has also come to realize that success is empty when you have no one with whom to celebrate it. But as luck would have it, an invitation to visit his alma mater brings Lee face-to-face with his first lover, and a chance for the reconciliation he never thought possible.

The sparks fly when Paul and Lee reunite, fulfilling long-denied dreams for both men. But passion isn’t a pledge, and it takes more than promises made in the dark to forge a shared future between two lonely hearts.

* * * *

“So, how have you been, Paul? Where did you settle down? Close to home?”

Paul shook his head. “I left San Diego and moved up to Monterey, right on the beach. It’s beautiful country.”

Lee sipped his dark roast. It was too hot, so he set the cup on the coffee table. “You always talked about Big Sur, maybe living right beside the ocean.”

He watched a rosy flush spread up Paul’s neck as he fidgeted in his seat. “You remember that?”

Did the man think he’d ever forget those quiet, dreamy conversations in the dark, cocooned in each other’s heat? Lee burned to know if Paul lived alone, or with a companion, because if his former lover was here with someone, it was better to know before he shoved his foot in his mouth—and all the way down his throat.

“That’s fantastic! Are you here alone?”

Paul stared at him. Inside, Lee’s sense of humor danced with glee. Paul Macy—speechless. Tongue-tied. The silent happy dance skidded to a halt. Paul wasn’t alone and didn’t want to admit it.

Lee reached for his coffee. Paul’s knee bumped his and stayed there. The heat of his thigh seeped through two layers of denim to warm Lee’s skin. Paul’s body temperature had always been like a warm furnace, especially on cold winter nights.

But he had someone in his life, and remembering those times in the dark would only get in the way of renewing their friendship. Lee smiled. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to pry into your personal life.”

Paul swallowed, hard, his Adam’s apple bobbing. He cleared his throat. “Actually, it’s okay. I live alone, and I’m here by myself.”

Thoughts suddenly spinning, Lee nodded. That information cast new light on possibilities for the weekend, not all of which Lee found pleasing. The last thing he needed was to get all worked up over Racy Macy again. He’d been a teenage idiot and his only excuse was that he got caught up in the excitement of his first sexual experience. He needed closure on those days, not renewed involvement.

A voice in his head whispered, "Coward."

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