John Caldwell was working undercover to bring down a drug lord when he's caught between his past - former partner Zack Maine - and his current partner Troy, who has a long-time bond with Zack.
When they are all trapped overnight in a snow-bound cabin, can they set aside their differences and be back-up for each other?
The cabin - he finally had it in sight. The freezing temperature ate at his bones, turning more than his balls blue. The heater worked overtime, but it couldn’t overcome the icy weather that had descended on the mountain. John Caldwell steered around the tree lined bend, finally able to see the smoke curling out of the chimney, and that, more than anything, gave him the extra burst of energy he needed to make it from his car to the small, covered porch.
When he threw open the door and dropped his duffel, the last person on earth he ever wanted to see again stood in front of the roaring fire, warming his hands. "Oh FUCK no!" he shouted. Zack Maine turned ice blue eyes on John and laughed.
Brushing back strands of too-long dark hair the wind from the open door had whipped into his eyes, he sobered slowly as he took in John's stoic expression. "What? You weren't expecting me?" His lips tightened. "I got your email invitation. Change your mind?"
“What the fuck are you talking about, Zack? The last person on earth I want to see right now is you, and by the way, did you happen to notice it's fucking freezing outside?" John moved deeper into the room, his haste to get to the warmth of the fire making Zack jump back out of the way. "Move over, asswipe, and let me warm up at least!"
Zack grumbled under his breath, "Not the nicest way to welcome the best fuck you ever had." He smirked and shoved John back. "You're just mad I left your ass for that cute twink that night!"
"Ah hell, why are you bringing up that again?" John glared at the man, his gut clenching over the worst night of his life. Nine months of hell since the argument that broke them up. Zack had to rub it in his face; the man never did know when to stop when he was ahead. He stared into the fire to keep the hurt on his face from being visible to Zack.
Zack huffed out a breath. "You practically threw that guy at me, telling me how cute his ass was and how I should go for it. I didn't even want him."
John scrubbed his jaw. A prickling ache indicated feeling coming back to his half frozen fingers. Sure, he knew he escalated the argument by throwing him at the guy, but he didn’t think Zack would act on the challenge. Fuck, it hadn’t even been a challenge. He thought they were solid, but he’d thought wrong. "Then what did you want, Zack?"
Zack's eyes flashed with pain for a brief moment before he replied.
"I told you a long time ago what I wanted. I wanted it all! You’re the one who pushed the kid at me. I left with him to show you that you don’t own me. You no longer have any power over my feelings.”
"I hope you enjoyed it then," John shot back, hating that his hurt showed in his tone. This weekend wasn’t supposed to include Zack, was supposed to be about business. But Zack being there brought out raw emotions he thought he’d put to rest months ago. "Still, I don’t want you here. So leave, damn it!"
Back-Up is available for free at AllRomance and Smashwords