- Shopping Bag ( 0 items )
In the four years he'd known Dr. Levi McCrea, Andrew had never once been to his home. Not for lack of trying. Oh, no, Andrew would have cut off his left nut to get an invitation into the inner sanctum. But not even McCrea's grad assistant had that privilege. Andrew knew that for a fact. It had taken a night plying him with beer and talking his friend Charlotte into sleeping with the jerk for Andrew to find out that particular road was a dead end.
He knew the address, though. He'd hoarded it since his sophomore year at Berkeley. Dr. McCrea would probably shit if he knew Andrew had had it that long. In spite of how much he loved to wind the professor up in class, he'd never had quite enough nerve to try a visit around his house.
Tomorrow was graduation. After tomorrow, Andrew Parish would be a graduate from UC-Berkeley with High Honors in Political Science, and Levi McCrea would just be one of the professors that had helped him excel. Nobody could say it was inappropriate for Andrew to seek him out beyond the university's campus. Especially the good Dr. McCrea. He might try other arguments, but they were going to have to be damn good ones to stop Andrew now.
He stood on the doorstep of the modest bungalow and took a deep breath. He'd taken extra care with his appearance tonight, though in all honesty, he always took extra care when he knew he was going to see Levi. He wore low-riding jeans that highlighted his long legs and lean hips. His white shirt was open at the collar, the sleeves rolled up nearly to his elbow, exposing his tanned skin. A cut that morning had gotten rid of most of the blond tips in his hair, but enough remained to still give him thesurfer look McCrea had razzed him about all year. When he'd checked the mirror before leaving, Andrew thought he looked good enough to pick up any guy he wanted.
Too bad the one that drove him craziest refused to acknowledge the chemistry between them. That was Andrew's goal for the night. He hadn't spent the last four years taking every course Levi taught, picking every possible fight in class with him that he could find, to have him deny the spark they had now.
The door opened before Andrew had the chance to ring the bell. Levi stood on the other side of the screen, a cup in one hand, a book in the other. His salt-and-pepper hair stood on end, as though he had spent most of the night running his fingers through it, and his hazel eyes were more brown than green in the fading June light. He always wore a tie and a jacket in class, but now he had on brown shorts and a blue Bruins T-shirt.
"The party isn't here tonight, Mr. Parish."
Andrew gave him a lazy smile. "That might be a matter of opinion." Tilting his head, he deliberately swept his gaze downward, over the broad chest, along the flat stomach, lingering a few extra seconds on his hips before crawling back up again. The man might be close to forty, but he was more delicious than most men twenty years his junior. Every time Andrew saw him, he had to stifle the natural instinct to drop to his knees and dive for Levi's cock. "I'm not interrupting anything, am I?"
"Just eating dinner and watching Nick at Nite. If I don't invite you in, are you going to linger on my porch and disturb the peace?"
"Now would I do something like that?" They both knew he would. Andrew had once instigated a strike on campus over budget cuts that had resulted in more than one poli-sci major getting arrested. He'd only escaped the same fate when Levi had stepped in and defended him. Yet another reason Andrew was convinced there was something more there than Levi let on. "You don't have to feed me if you let me in. Well. Not dinner anyway."
Levi pushed the screen door open, allowing Andrew to enter. "I'm not going to feed you anything, but you can watch Cheers with me, if you want. I would ask you how you found my address, but I don't think I want to know."
He held back his triumphant smile as he followed Levi into the cool house. One obstacle gone. The rest would be easy.
The décor was bachelor chic with a side of absentminded professor. Books lined two of the four walls of the room Levi led him into, with a third dominated by a massive entertainment center. Widescreen television, DVD player, stereo, rows upon rows of CDs, with Bose speakers strategically placed in the various corners.
Andrew whistled. "Nice set-up. No wonder you don't want any of your students coming around. All you need is a game system, and you'd never get any of us to go."
Levi snorted. "That's not why I don't want any of my students coming around. Haven't you figured out yet that I don't like any of you people?" He gestured at the couch, indicating Andrew should sit down. "Plus, I suspected if I ever let you come around, you'd take that to mean you had an open invitation."
Andrew deliberately sat in the middle. "Nothing wrong with wanting some privacy. Personally, I'm very glad I don't have to worry about you getting any more visitors tonight. It means I finally get you all to myself."
"You had me all to yourself every week when you monopolized my office hours," Levi said, perching on the arm of the couch. "What else do you want?"
"Oh, I can think of one or two things." He crossed his legs, resting his ankle on his knee. "We can start with you saying yes to a date."
Levi laughed, though not unkindly. "With who? You? You know I was married, right? To a woman?"
"And do you know how many married guys I know who wish they had the balls to just come out and admit they like other guys?" Andrew shrugged. "It just means you knew the truth all along."
"Knew what truth all along?"
"That there's nothing wrong in being gay. Or bi maybe. Though frankly, I'm leaning toward gay. You don't have nearly the same spark with any of the girls in your classes that you do with me."
"What makes you think that's a sexual spark? Maybe I respect you for your mind."
Andrew pretended to contemplate that possibility, then shook his head. "You wouldn't have invited me in if you didn't want me physically close. You would have asked me on the porch what I wanted, and if you really didn't wonder what it would be like to bend me over your desk, you would have turned down my date offer and sent me on my way."
Levi tilted his head and studied Andrew for a long beat. "Or maybe I invited you in because I wanted a chance to say goodbye to my favorite pain in the neck."
"Goodbye? I'm graduating, I'm not dying. If anything, it's finally a chance for us to throw the door open on a new beginning."
Levi took a swallow from his cup, and his knowing hazel eyes were still fixed on Andrew. He had the tendency to do that in class, too. He would just watch patiently until Andrew finally twigged on the answer or the concept Levi was trying to make him understand. "You're going to law school and moving on with your life. Now is as good a time as any to say goodbye."
"Except law school's just a jaunt down the road to Stanford." He stretched his arm along the back of the couch, letting his fingertips graze over the elbow Levi leaned upon. "Did I tell you that it was your recommendation letter that got their attention? I'm not sure I would have gotten in without you."
Levi glanced down, his gaze falling briefly on Andrew's fingers, before refocusing on his face. "That's not true, Andy. You probably could have waltzed in to any law school in the country."
His throat tightened. Levi didn't use his first name very often; nine times out of ten, it was Mr. Parish this, or Mr. Parish that. Every time Andrew heard it, the sound of it rolling in his smooth baritone made him sizzle.
"Only because you pushed me." In long, languid strokes, he let his fingers glide over Levi's skin, never pushing too hard, always within easy control to retreat should Levi make noises about wanting him to back off. Each caress electrified his veins, until it felt like there wasn't any piece of him not scorched by just that careful contact. "I've never known anyone like you before."
Levi allowed the contact to continue for a few more seconds before straightening, moving just out of Andrew's reach. "Flattery isn't going to get you anywhere. I'm not going to agree to a..." He shook his head, like he couldn't quite believe what he was about to say. "A date. Or anything else."
"Why? What are you afraid of?"
Posted November 9, 2010
No text was provided for this review.