Brooklyn Sinners 2.5 - Save Me, Sinner - Avril Ashton.pdf

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Save Me, Sinner
A Shane & JP Story
by Avril Ashton
Chapter One
Shane couldn’t rightly say what woke him; maybe it was the absolute quiet. Maybe it was the gentle
heat of the morning sun shining on his face through the curtains at his bedroom window.
He stifled a yawn and rolled over onto his back. His aloneness dawned pretty quickly and opened his
eyes. No, he was all alone in his bed. Did that mean last night hadn’t happened, that Pablo Castillo
hadn’t finally come to Shane? Did it mean he’d lost his mind after all, that the pain of walking away
from the man he loved had finally taken its toll and Shane had dreamt everything?
Pablo outside his door, the hurried too-good-to-be-true sex against his door and the words he’d
longed for, the ‘I love you’. Had he dreamt that?
He covered his mouth with a palm, stifling a yawn, before sitting up and looking around. Nothing was
out of place. Shane’s throat worked and he leaned back against the pillows, head tilted back with his
eyes squeezed shut.
A phone rang, startling him. Shane looked around before he realized the ringtone wasn’t his, but damn
if it wasn’t familiar.
He launched himself off the bed and raced out the bedroom. His chest hurt as he held his breath, too
scared to hope, but wanting to.
In the living room, he skidded to a stop.
Oh God.
Pablo Castillo was there, on his couch, a cup of coffee in one hand, a newspaper spread out on his
lap and his phone to his ear. He looked like he had no care in the world, like he was at home, wearing
nothing but a pair of tight red boxer briefs. His skin was just fair enough for Shane to make out the
bruises and bites he’d left from the night before, scratches on his uppers arms and shoulders, a hickey
just below his right ear.
All Shane’s marks.
“I’m sorry,” Pablo spoke into the phone. “But listen, I’m here if you ever need help. You know that.”
His words and tone were heavy, laced with a sad finality. Sliding a palm over his shaved head, Pablo
continued, “I never wanted to hurt you.”
Shane stood and listened. He searched his mind for the identity of who Pablo could be talking to and
only one name came up. Still, he’d leave it to his lover to confirm it.
“No one knows who you are,” Pablo spoke softly into the phone. He leaned forward, shoulders
hunched. “I would never betray you like that, but Shane isn’t one of your enemies, he’s the man I love
and when he wakes up, I’m telling him the truth.”
Warmth like he’d never known touched Shane and he couldn’t help smiling. It was good to know
Pablo didn’t plan on keeping secrets. He cleared his throat.
Pablo tensed and threw a gaze over his shoulder. Shane smiled at him. Pablo didn’t reciprocate.
“Levi, I gotta go, but remember what I said, I’m here if you need help.” Ending the call, Pablo got to
his feet. He approached Shane with wary eyes. “How much of that did you hear?”
Shane shrugged. “Not much. Why don’t you fill me in?”
“In a minute.” Pablo grabbed Shane by the nape and pulled him into his chest. “Good morning.” He
took Shane’s mouth, kissing away his reply.
“Mmm.” Shane wrapped his arms around Pablo and fell into the kiss. Parting his lips, he groaned
when Pablo’s tongue tangled with his. He rubbed up against the man in his arms, his body coming
alive, flaming for him. A lifetime of this. That was what he had to look forward to and damn, Shane
couldn’t wait to start their lives together. He gripped Pablo’s shoulders and deepened the kiss. Pablo
nipped at him, sharp teeth biting before his slick tongue soothed.
They kissed until Shane couldn’t breathe, until his lungs burned, only then did they ease up. Yet they
retained the embrace, Pablo’s face buried in Shane’s neck and Shane pressing tiny kisses to Pablo’s
ear. They stood in place, in no hurry to move because they had all the time in the world and Shane
wanted to be nowhere else, but right there, in the arms of the man who loved him enough to change for
“Is there something you want to tell me?” Shane asked after a while.
He heard his lover’s sharp inhale, felt him nod.
Pablo pulled away, putting just enough space between them to reach out and cup Shane’s cheek. “I
ever told you how much I love when you call me that?” His brown eyes were filled with love,
gratitude, and fear.
Shane frowned at that one.
Why fear?
“No,” he answered Pablo’s question. “You never told me.”
“Now you know.” Pablo moved away and motioned to the coffee pot. “I made coffee. Want some?”
Shane nodded. He watched while Pablo poured him a cup. Something hovered in the air between
them, and damn if Shane could put a finger on what. Dread, maybe? What did Pablo dread? What put
the fear in his eyes earlier?
Was he already regretting his decision to step away from the gang life and focus on building
something with Shane?
Taking the coffee from Pablo, Shane stumbled to the couch and sank down. Pablo didn’t sit. He paced
Shane put down his cup and cleared his throat. “Is that regret I see in your eyes?”
Pablo froze. “Fuck.” He muttered the curse under his breath, but Shane still heard the words.
The hollow in Shane’s chest grew and grew. That wasn’t a denial, he hadn’t denied it. “Are you sorry
you came?” Wow, his voice. It shook, much like his insides as they quivered. “Do you want to
“No!” Pablo sank to the floor before him and grabbed Shane’s hand. “Babe, I’m not regretting you
and me.” His eyes begged Shane to believe as his fingers dug into his wrist. “What you see is— what
you see is fear. I’m afraid of how you’ll react when you hear what I have to say.”
What else didn’t he know about his lover? Shane bit his lip to stop himself from asking that question.
“Why don’t you just say what you have to say and let me decide how I’ll react?”
Pablo sighed. “I just…I don’t want this to hurt us.”
“Can it?”
No hesitation. Pablo didn’t meet his eyes, and the worry and fear Shane had been trying to keep at bay
cascaded through him. Instead of lashing out, he shook his head. ‘Tell me.”
“Did you know the Nieto brothers had a third sibling?”
Shane frowned. The Nieto brothers were a gang of killers and drug dealers operating out of Mexico.
They were at the top of the DEA’s hit list. Shane had even gone undercover, infiltrating the operation
of one of their associates in hopes of bringing the Nietos down. He’d gotten some good intel and
made some arrests, but hadn’t managed to snag the big fish. The only good thing that came out of that
assignment was meeting his lover.
“There are only two Nietos.”
Pablo shook his head. ‘Three.”
“You know this how?”
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