The Hot Zone

Chapter 29


Nikolas came awake with a start and realized that Zander's cry had awoken him. Zander was moaning and thrashing about and Nikolas cupped his face in both hands to calm him. "Zander...Zander, wake up."


Zander's eyes snapped open and he stiffened for a moment. Then awareness seemed to hit him. He locked eyes with Nikolas. "Make love to me," he begged.


"Zander…" Nikolas began, only to be silenced by a kiss. Then he felt hands roving over him, fingers popping open buttons almost desperately. Nikolas grabbed Zander's hands to stop him. "Not like this," he said softly.


"You don't want me?" Zander shot back, his eyes glistening with hurt.


Nikolas leaned in to kiss him, sweetly. "I want you so much I feel like I’m on fire," Nikolas replied. He moved one of Zander's hands to his crotch and him feel his bulging erection. "But I want to take it slow, Zander. I want to feel every moment so that it's imprinted in my mind and in my flesh. I want it to be about love, not desperation. I don't want to make love so that you can forget things. I want us to be together so that remember all the good stuff."

Zander nodded. "I want that too. But I'm so messed up, Nikolas. I don't know if I can give you what you want."


"If you can trust me and give yourself to me, that's all I want." Nikolas smoothed a lock of dark hair off Zander's forehead, loving how soft it felt against his skin. "Can you do that?"


"I can try," Zander replied. "What do you want me to do?"


Nikolas sat up and simply looked at Zander for a long moment, reveling in the moment because they were together again. "I want to make you feel good," Nikolas replied. "I want you to let me do that."

Zander nodded, even though he looked uncertain. "Okay."


"Okay," Nikolas echoed, then he reached out to pull Zander's shirt over his head, baring the muscled chest to his hungry gaze. Nikolas then went to work on Zander's jeans, but he paused to move down to the end of the bed to slip off Zander's socks before working jeans and briefs down the strong legs. He then stood back for a moment and let himself look at Zander. " are so beautiful," Nikolas whispered. "So perfect.."

"Don't say that," Zander countered, sitting up and reaching for the blankets.


Nikolas stopped him. "Let me look at you, Zander. I've missed this."

Zander bit his lip then nodded. "I want to see you too," he countered.


"Fair enough." Nikolas made short work of getting undressed, then he moved onto the bed again and kissed his way up Zander's thighs till he reached his cock. Nikolas took the swollen tip into his mouth and sucked on it, loving the deep moan that rumbled from Zander's chest. He then licked the velvety shaft before taking it deep in his throat. Nikolas loved the sounds that Zander made as he neared his release. And Nikolas was ready to swallow every drop, and he did so, holding Zander in his mouth as he softened, before moving over him to share the taste. "I missed tasting you," Nikolas whispered against the soft lips.


"I missed being with you," Zander replied. "Thank you for this."

Nikolas smiled. "This is just the beginning." He leaned over Zander to open the bedside table and he removed a bottle of lubricant.  Nikolas opened it but it was yanked out of his hands. He watched as Zander smiled at him, then he took Nikolas' right hand and poured oil into the palm, then he smoothed it over every finger. It was intensely erotic and Nikolas felt his cock throb and ache as it grew even harder. "You make me crazy," Nikolas stated, as he tugged his hand free. He shifted back so he could push a pillow under Zander, then he opened his thighs and let one finger tease Zander's opening before pressing inside. It didn't take but a moment for Nikolas to find Zander's hot spot and he had to grip his own cock at the base, to stop his own pleasure, as he listened to Zander whimper in reaction to the pleasure Nikolas was giving him. "I need to be inside you," Nikolas hissed.


Zander sat up as Nikolas slid his finger out. He took the lubricant again and slicked Nikolas' cock. Before slicking the tip, he kissed it, smiling as Nikolas moaned. Then Zander lay back down again and locked eyes with Nikolas.


"Ready?" Nikolas asked, as he positioned himself.


"Wait!" Zander was sitting up again. "There's something you need to know."

Nikolas nodded, even though his body was screaming at him for release. "What is it?"


Zander closed his eyes then blurted out, "I had sex with Brad."


"I know."

"You know?" Zander's eyes flew open.


Nikolas smiled and reached out to cup Zander's cheek. "Brad called me after it happened. He told me everything."

Zander was stunned. "You're not mad?"

"I understand what happened and why it happened," Nikolas replied. "Do you?"


"I don't know. I was so angry and hurt and fucked up at the time."

Nikolas brushed Zander's lower lip with his thumb. He had the most kissable lips. But then he forced himself to focus on the moment. It was a moment of truth between them. "But you called it sex, Zander. So it seems to me you understand. Because you asked me to make love to you. Do you still want that?"


Zander nodded. "I want to feel connected to you."

"We are connected, Zander," Nikolas replied. "Even without this."


"I know...but I want to feel you inside me, connected in every way."

Nikolas could see uncertainty shimmering in Zander's beautiful eyes and he wanted to make everything make sense for them both again. He smiled then he kissed Zander, pressing him back down again. Then he shifted back into position and pressed his aching hardness into Zander's welcoming body. He went still when Zander moaned a bit, watching him to make sure he was all right, then he was pushing in inch by inch until he was fully sheathed in inside of Zander. And it felt like coming home. "Perfect fit," Nikolas whispered, leaning in to kiss him again. And they kept kissing as Nikolas began to move. He shifted his hips so that he could bring pleasure to Zander even as he worked towards his own release. And then Nikolas was coming hard and long, pumping his seed inside of Zander, marking him once more even as he was marked by this moment. He slumped onto Zander for a moment, feeling strong arms wrap around him. But when Nikolas felt Zander shaking, he pulled back in time to see a tear slide down Zander's face. Nikolas kissed it away. "What's wrong?" he asked.


Zander shook his head. "Nothing. For once...everything is perfect. I love you, Nikolas," Zander whispered.


"I love you too," Nikolas replied, then he bent his head and kissed Zander with all the hunger he had been holding back inside. And he was pleased when Zander matched that hunger. And this time when they fell asleep, bodies tangled together, there were no bad dreams.


* * * * *

Zander woke up wrapped in Nikolas's strong arms and he smiled to himself. But the smile soon faded as panic set in. Zander detangled himself and slid from the bed. He headed for the bathroom and stepped in the shower and he realized he was shaking. He couldn't do this. He couldn't stay with Nikolas and pretend that everything was all right. Nikolas deserved better than what Zander had to offer him. Zander wished he could turn back time and do things over again, but he couldn't. He finished his shower and dried off, then he padded back into the bedroom and grabbed some clean clothes. He was stamping his feet into his boots when Nikolas woke up. Zander avoided making eye contact.


"Going somewhere?" Nikolas asked, as he slid from the bed. He grabbed a black silk robe from a nearby chair and pulled it on.


"I don't belong here," Zander replied. He stood up and reached for his jacket only to find a hand on his arm. "Nikolas…don't," Zander begged.

Nikolas gripped his chin to make him look at him. "Don't what, Zander? Don't love you? I can't help how I feel."


Zander pulled his head away. "Last night was a beautiful memory, Nikolas. I don't want to ruin it."

"If you leave me…it's already ruined."

"I'm a mess...a fucked up mess!" Zander shouted. "Don't you get that?"

Nikolas shrugged. "What's your point?"


Zander brushed at his eyes, wiping away unwanted tears. He felt tired and confused and afraid. "You're the best thing that's happened to me in a long time, Nikolas. I'm glad that I got to be with you, but it can't last. Nothing ever does for me. Ever. If I stay with you, I'll trash us. I will. It always happens and it always will."

"I don't care." Nikolas stated.


"Then you're a damn fool!" Zander shot back. "Cause I'm not worth it."

Eyes blazing with fury, Nikolas grabbed Zander and shook him. "You're worth everything to me, Zander. Do you hear me? Everything that happened to get us to this moment? Good or bad...all of it...I would do again, without changing a damn thing. And I would do that because of you. Because I love you and you are everything in the world to me."

Zander shook his head. He couldn't believe what he was hearing. "Why?" he whispered. "This is all fucked up, Nikolas. You're supposed to be in love with Gia and I'm supposed to be with Emily. It's're crazy."


"Do you love me?" Nikolas asked.


"Yes.." Zander didn't hesitate or lie.


Nikolas looked relieved. "And I love you. That's all that matters, Zander. Let go of the rest."

Zander shook his head. "I don't know how."


"Don't go back to Sonny," Nikolas countered. "It’s that easy. Stay with me. Be with me."


"Nikolas..." Zander began to argue the point. He couldn't forget about Alexis and the danger she was in. But for the moment he couldn't imagine walking away from the man he loved. He would figure out the rest later. "Yes.." Zander whispered. "I'll stay." Then he kissed Nikolas, as if it might be for the last time.


* * * * *


Alexis watched Zander sleeping. He was stretched out on the couch and he looked about sixteen years old. A smile curved her lips as she studied him. He was such a beautiful boy, and so giving to those he cared about. Zander had sacrificed everything to protect her and Alexis had no clue how she could ever repay him for his pain. But at the very least she could set him free so that he could be with Nikolas.

She and Nikolas had talked first. Alexis had wanted him to know everything because she was afraid of how Zander might react. And she wanted Nikolas to be able to be there for him. They both deserved to be happy and as strange as it was that Nikolas and Zander were in love, somehow they fit and Alexis approved wholeheartedly.


Zander stirred and opened his eyes. "Alexis?"


"Hey." She smiled at him, resisting the urge to reach out and smooth his hair from his eyes. She waited until he was sitting up to ask, "Feel up to talking?"

"About what?" Zander frowned as combed his hair off his face.

Alexis moved to sit beside him. "About what you did to save me," she stated. There was no reason not to be blunt and completely honest about everything. "You sacrificed everything for me, Zander. To keep me and Kristina safe. And I don't know how to even begin to thank you for that. There are no words to tell you how grateful I am."

Zander stared at Alexis in stunned disbelief, then he shook his head. "I don't know what you're talking about."

"Sure you do. Working for Sonny and letting him whore you out."

"No.." Zander jumped up and began to pace.

Alexis got up and stood in his path. "Jason told me everything, Zander." She cupped his face in both hands when he tried to move away. "I confronted Sonny and he will never have the power to hurt you again. I'm safe, Zander. Everything has been taken care of. You're free to be with Nikolas. Okay?"


A tear slid down Zander's face. "I didn't want you to know," he whispered. "You weren't supposed to find out."

"I'm glad I did." Alexis brushed the tear away with the pad of her thumb. "I just...I don’t understand something, Zander. Why? Why did you do that for me?"


"You saved my life, Alexis," Zander replied, his voice shaking as he was. "How could I not do the same for you, and for Kristina?"


Alexis felt her own tears begin to fall as she pulled Zander into her arms. They held each other for a long time, until there were no more tears, then she felt Zander leading her over to the couch. Alexis turned to face Zander and smiled at him, her eyes shining with love and pride. "I want you to be happy, Zander," she said softly. "You deserve it. I think you can find that happiness with Nikolas. He's a pretty catch, if I do say so myself. And he's lucky to have you. When you love someone, you love them with everything you have…everything you are."

Zander shook his head. "I'm not so sure that's such a good thing."


"It is…trust me." Alexis leaned in to kiss his forehead, after brushing his hair back. "I love you, kiddo."

"I love you too."


Alexis nodded. "Thank you for what you did." She felt fresh tears slide down her face and this time it was Zander who held her as she cried.


* * * * *


Brad watched Zander pacing. They were at Wyndemere, in the Library. Nikolas had talked Zander into agreeing to continue having sessions with him. Brad was pleased with Zander's progress. The first session had been difficult and a bit awkward for them both. But Zander had been the one to set the tone. He had ushered Brad into the Library then he had firmly shut the door. He had then shoved him against the door and kissed him, until Brad felt himself grow hard and aching as Zander ground his body against him. And just when Brad was about ready to cum in his pants, Zander had pulled back and smiled. Brad had asked him why he did that and Zander had replied "Because I want you to know that I'm the one in control of my own actions." And Brad had understood what Zander was saying, and that it was Zander's way of payback. Which Brad had accepted. He knew he rather deserved it.


But that had been three months ago and Zander had been doing great. But today Brad sensed that something was wrong. Zander was obviously agitated and upset. "What's wrong?" Brad asked.


"I got on a bus to Canada today," Zander blurted out.




Zander shook his head. "I felt scared."

Brad nodded, he was intrigued. "Scared of what?"


"Everything." Zander ran a hand through his hair as he paced. "Things are good between me and Nikolas. Really good. Too good."

"You're afraid of letting yourself be too happy," Brad guessed. And he wasn't surprised that Zander felt that way. The kid wasn't used to being happy or having good things happen to him.


Zander sighed and stopped pacing. He locked eyes with Brad. "I keep thinking that I'm going to wake up one morning and find out this is just a dream. That I'm back at Sonny's and I'm still at the club and some guy I don't know is going to be in bed with me."


Brad nodded his understanding. "It's going to take a while before you can accept that your life has changed for the better, Zander. You can't just forget about what happened."


"I know."

"So why did you get off the bus?" Brad prompted.


Zander smiled. "Because I wanted to go home. It just hit me that I wanted to go home and that *This* is home. My home."


Brad found Zander's smile to be infectious. "Did you tell Nikolas?"

"Yeah. I told him about Jason too."

"How did he take it?" Brad and Zander had talked, at length, about Zander's feelings for Jason Morgan. Zander felt connected to the other man and was grateful for all Jason had done to help him. He had confessed to Brad that his feelings went deeper than gratitude. Not exactly love, but something else. Brad had suggested talking to Nikolas about it but Zander had been afraid to. But, apparently, he had gotten past that fear. That was a good sign. That meant he trusted Nikolas's love for him without question.


Zander huffed a sigh and started pacing again. "He took it better than I would have. In fact, it was his idea to invite Jason over to talk things out."


Brad was surprised. "So are you going to do that?"


"We already did."


Zander stopped pacing and sat down in a nearby chair. "Last night. We talked for hours about everything. It's weird, but the three of us trust each other and we feel this connection that I can't explain."

Brad was curious. "So what happened? I talk it out with Jason and suddenly you're on a bus to Canada. I'm guessing whatever happened was part of the reason you thought about leaving."


"It was." Zander smiled. "I'm not ready to talk about it, but what happened scared me a bit. It goes along with everything seeming too perfect and I got scared that I would fuck it up. But I had to come back because this is where I belong."

"You've come a long way, Zander," Brad said, with a sense of pride.


Zander looked happy. "Yeah…It feels like it." He glanced at his watch. "Can we end early today? I have something to do."


Brad figured it would be okay. "Sure. See you next week?"

"Same time, same place," Zander allowed.

"I'll see myself out," Brad said, and he laughed when Zander nodded before bolting from the room. He could guess where he was going and why, and he was truly happy for Zander. He was still smiling as he made his way out.


* * * * *


Zander shucked his clothes as he climbed the private stairs to the bedroom. He opened the door and smiled to see that Nikolas was lying on the bed, naked as well. Zander ran over and climbed onto the bed, then he draped himself over Nikolas's body before kissing him. "Didja miss me?"


"More than words can say," Nikolas replied, as he tangled his fingers in Zander's hair.

"How about actions then?" Zander countered. He pulled away long enough to grab the bottle of lube off the bed stand. He then slicked Nikolas' cock before turning around to straddle his thighs. Zander knew it would hurt not being stretched, but he didn't care, he wanted Nikolas inside him.  But before he could press down upon Nikolas's cock, Jason was there before him. Naked and smiling. He pulled Zander into a kiss and Zander let himself melt against Jason. Then he felt a finger pressing inside him and he knew that Nikolas would always do everything in his power to take away his pain. To give Zander nothing but pleasure.


Last night Zander and Nikolas and Jason had made love together. And it had been unexpected yet perfect. It was perfect now. Zander felt safe and protected as he was shifted between the two men he cared about. His heart belonged to Nikolas in every way, but Jason would always be a part of his life and connected to Nikolas as well, for Zander knew the two of them would always be there for him. That they would always come together to protect him and take care of him and that made Zander feel secure and happy in a way that he had never thought possible. Then all thought left him as Jason eased him back onto Nikolas' cock. There was some pain, but Jason kissed away his whimper, distracting him even as Nikolas wrapped a hand around Zander's cock and stroked him.

Then Jason broke the kiss to take Zander's cock into his mouth. They moved as one, connected in a way that defied definition. And as they each found their own release, Zander knew that no matter what happened in the future, he would never be alone again.






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