Bittersweet Irish Cream Ch. 01

Brunette

This is is a full love story with many chapters and parts. There are erotic scenes and we’ll get to that, but this is first and foremost, a love story. There are twists and turns halfway through, heartbreak and murder, but nothing will keep these two apart. Thank you for taking the time to read about Ethan and Jack, a story dreamed up and now hold near and dear to my heart.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Ethan was pissed. He knew that little shit was doing it on purpose.

If this was the Bronx he would have opened his window and told him to knock it the fuck off before he breaks his foot off in his ass. But nooooo, he just had to move to West Bubblefuck Small Town USA, where those kinds of things are taboo. Ethan Jr, EJ, stirred in his sleep next to him. Any minute now he was going to wake up and then Ethan was really going to go off.

Fuck it, he thought, I’m going up there.

He left the room and closed the door slightly, and then went to the door of his basement apartment under the Inn. He went up the stairs and passed through the door that connected to his office and entered the vestibule where the front desk was. Stacy, his front desk clerk, really his everything right now, glanced up when he passed by.

“Good morning, Ethan,” she said cheerily. But he did not hear her. She took one look at his face and looked away. He is going to blow his top, she thought.

Ethan swung upon the door to the Inn, the icy cold January morning wind hit him hard. He realized he was in pajama bottoms, slippers and a sweatshirt. But he was too hot with anger to care. “Oy! You!” He yelled at the garbage kid.

Jack had headphones on and was operating the incinerator part of the garbage truck right in front. He had not heard a word of what Ethan said, as he had his ear buds in his ear playing Justin Timberlake loudly.

Ethan walked closer and yelled, “Yooooooo!” He clapped his hands a few times then waved it in Jack’s face.

Jack took one ear bud out and said calmly, “The fuck are you doing, man?”

Ethan yelled, “Do you have to incinerate here? Right here!? The truck is already loud enough, but now it’s just a persistent grinding sound and nobody wants to hear that shit first thing in the morning.”

Jack was perplexed. Again. He said, “It’s 8:30am. On a Friday. Most people are either at work or on their way to work. I promise you, nobody gives a shit about the garbage truck.”

Ethan growled, “I give a shit. My son is still sleeping.”

Jack’s face softened a bit. “Oh. You have a son? That’s all you had to say then.” He cut off the incinerator, hit the side of the truck twice for it to move on. Sharon, his teammate who had been watching this exchange was amused. She dumped more garbage from the other side of the street in the truck as it slow crawled along.

Ethan said curtly, “Thank you.” He started walking away.

Jack did as well, but waited until Ethan was in front of the door of the Inn and said, “You know, you should try to be less of an asshole, for the sake of your son and all.”

Ethan turned around. Jack tapped his camouflage hat and smiled, then hopped of the back of the truck. As it moved on Ethan had only one thought: I hate that fucker.

~~~~~

The following Friday as the truck turned on Montour Street, Jack already rolled his eyes anticipating the drama.

“You think your boyfriend is going to have something to say again today?” Sharon said and laughed. Jack shook his head. “He needs to get fucking laid.”

He had never seen him before until about two weeks ago, right after the new year. He comes storming out of McKinley’s Inn and starts yelling at Jack about how he was throwing around the garbage cans. Truthfully Jack wasn’t doing anything differently to his cans than he did everyone else. He did his job by picking up the buckets, dumping them in the back and dropped it where it was. So it fell over from time to time. This dickhead acted like Jack raised it over his head and hurled it at the window. He jumped in Jack’s face like he was spoiling for a fight. Jack is typically calm in the face of drama but there was something about him that made Jack’s blood boil. He really thought this guy was going to hit him.

So Jack had to use humor to calm the situation down. He put on his strongest Irish accent and said, “Apologies sir, my arthritis is acting up. I’ll be careful not ta drop rubbish again sir.” He followed up with a deep bow. The guy looked at Jack like he was crazy.

Jack picked up the three trash bins and aligned them up perfectly, then did another deep bow. He got on the back on the truck. Once it was a good three feet away, he called out, “Fucking dickhead!” and stuck his middle finger up. That felt good.

The next week he comes over screaming at him while he was doing his job, incinerating the trash. Apparently it’s too loud for him, and Jack was thinking, where the fuck is dude from? He was about to get cursed out again, but then he mentioned his son so Jack decided to be nice — sort of. He still called him an asshole. Because he is. bahis siteleri Whoever McKinley got managing his Inn now is the fucking worse and he’ll be sure to tell him that the next time he sees him.

As Jack picked up trash and walked closer to the Inn, he saw Mr. Dickhead sitting out front. It was lightly snowing and he was all bundled up on the bench outside the Inn with a boy no older than two on his lap, also bundled up. The boy was in awe of the falling flakes, but his eyes went wide when he saw the truck.

“TRUCK!” The boy squealed and clapped excitedly.

Jack walked right over, he loves kids. He used to work at the daycare around the corner, named Just In Time, in high school and the additional year after he graduated before he got this job.

“Well hey little man,” he said. “I hope we didn’t wake you today.”

The boy pointed and smiled a wide smile, then yelled, “TRUCK!”

“Yes,” Jack said. “It’s a garbage truck. And I’m a garbage man.” Ethan snorted a laugh. Jack finally addressed him. “What? Nothing to yell about today?” Jack turned around and started emptying out the trash containers.

“No, he was already awake,” Ethan said. “And if you did your job correctly you wouldn’t need to get yelled at.”

Jack put the three containers down gently, stood there and smiled at Ethan. “Tell Mr. McKinley he has a grade A asshole looking over his place for me, will you?”

“Mr. McKinley retired in December when I bought this place from him. I own it now.

Jack’s smile faded quickly as Ethan’s rose triumphantly. “That’s right,” he said. “I’m the new Mr. McKinley.”

Jack scoffed and walked on following the truck. “You are not Mr. McKinley,” he said. “You will never be Mr. McKinley.”

EJ yelled after him, “Truck!”

The next Friday they saw each other was the first week in February. Ethan was again outside with the toddler, bundled up in a baby carrier on his chest. He was decorating the outside bay windows for Valentines Day. Jack read the sign: Have a romantic weekend at the Starling Bed and Breakfast. He laughed out loud and caught Ethan and EJ’s attention.

Ethan rolled his eyes as EJ started yelling, “Truck truck truuuuuuck!” He said, “Don’t you have a mundane job to do?”

Jack could not help but dig back. “Hey, Not Mr. McKinley, Do you breastfeed him too?” he asked pointing at EJ. “Maybe that’s why you’ve been hormonal lately.”

Ethan puffed out air, annoyed as Jack walked on. “No, but somebody should have breastfed your imbecilic ass. You could have used the extra brain cells.”

Jack called out, “Hey Not McKinley, guess who has two digits and not getting any ass on Valentine’s Day?” He raised up two middle fingers and pointed it at Ethan and smiled.

Ethan gave him a death stare and Jack laughed and walked on, leaving Ethan to mutter, “I really hate that motherfucker.”

~~~~~

EJ went to the window every Friday since the last encounter. As much as Ethan wanted to slap the shit out of the garbage kid, EJ wanted to see it up close and he wouldn’t deny EJ those simple pleasures. Ethan Junior was his whole world. So he gritted his teeth and got dressed to sit outside and let EJ see the truck. He tried not to trade insults but he couldn’t help it. What an arrogant prick. A small town big man. He wouldn’t survive in the city, no way.

Jack on the other hand looked forward to trading insults. The only way to beat an asshole is to be an even bigger asshole. Go big or go home, as his cousin Wilhelmina would say. Also, EJ was a cute kid. Light brown hair, chubby cheeks, stubby fingers and an infectious laugh. He found out is name was EJ by what Mr. Dickhead called him, and figured the J was for junior, but didn’t know what the E stood for. Enzo? Elijah? Elliot? He looks like an Elliot. Maybe Edwin. But Jack would not give him the satisfaction of asking. It really bothered him that he called him Not Mr. McKinley, Jack could tell.

The last Friday in February, Jack found himself sad to see the bench empty. He glanced at the window and saw Not Mr. McKinley staring at him with a cup of coffee in his hand. Jack touched his hat as acknowledgment. Ethan nodded acknowledging him back. Jack emptied out the trash, lined up the containers and kept moving without a glance back. But the following week, the start of March, they were back on the bench.

Like clockwork EJ cheered and said, “Truck!”

Jack said, “Hey little guy, missed you. Got something for you. But I need your dad to dig into my side pocket.” Jack came closer and Ethan was suspicious. He hesitated, but then reached in, pulling out a miniature toy garbage truck. EJ was over the moon.

“TRUUUUUUUCK!” He squealed.

“I hope you didn’t get this out of someone’s trash to give to my son.”

Jack’s mouth dropped. “No, you asshole, why would I do that?”

EJ was talking loudly over them, “truck truck trrrruuuuuck!” trying to reach the toy that was still in Ethan’s hands. Ethan slowly gave it to EJ as Jack started walking on, shaking his head.

Ethan sighed. He said to his canlı bahis siteleri son, “EJ, what do you say to….the man?”

“Truck!”

“No…say thank you. Thaaank yoooou.”

“Kaaaankoo!” EJ tried.

Jack laughed. “It’s Jack. In case you wanted to know.”

Ethan said curtly, “I didn’t.”

Jack nodded. “OK, Not McKinley.” He finished emptying the trash containers and started moving on.

Ethan sighed again. He called out, “Thank you. Jack. For thinking of him.”

Jack turned around and smiled wide. This was the first time Ethan noticed his dimples. Cute. Then Jack said, “See? Isn’t it nice to not be an asshole sometimes? That obedience school your owners put you in must be working.”

Ethan glared at Jack, making him laugh more. Little shit, he thought to himself.

~~~~~

A couple of weeks and warmer weather later, Ethan was again without EJ. He was outside power washing the front of the Inn when the truck came around. Jack, as he was taking out the trash said, “Did the kid finally get tired of looking at your ugly mug and run away?”

“No,” Ethan said without looking at Jack. “He spends a week with his mother and grandparents every month.”

“Well that’s good for you right? You get a little break from parenting.”

“I don’t need a break from my son,” Ethan said curtly.

“Parenting is a full time job,” Jack said. “Just because you love doing something and center your life around it doesn’t mean it doesn’t exhaust you from time to time. It’s OK to want to recoup a bit. Breathe.”

Ethan finally looked at Jack. “I don’t recoup when he is away from me. I worry. Ruminate. For six days until I’m back in the car to get him and bring him home.”

Jack finished emptying out the trash. “Okay. I hear you. Not Mr. McKinley.” He smiled a little. Ethan again noticed the dimples, closer up. Very cute. Jack walked on.

He’s being nice, be nice too, Ethan thought to himself. “It’s Ethan. Not…Not Mr. McKinley. Just Ethan.”

Jack did a sideways smile that was even cuter than his full smile. He said, “I think I like Not Mr. McKinley better,” he said and winked before running to catch up with the truck. Ethan’s stomach did a butterfly flip. Stop it, he told himself.

Jack started bringing EJ something every week: Three magnet blocks, lollipops, squishy dollar store toys. But EJ loved his garbage truck toy beyond everything else. He would fall asleep with it in his hand or near his pillow. Ethan who ended up co-sleeping with his son more than he would like, spent many nights rolling over and coming face to face with the toy truck. He would then remember Jack, his attitude, his arrogance…his pretty smile with dimples on each cheek, the way his black hair turns up in the back of his head under his hat…

And then Ethan would groan at himself for even allowing himself to even think it for a second. He’s not even his type, he looks too young and he’s a bit on the thin side. Ethan has never been into twinks. He falls for older, sophisticated men, men with money and authority have always been a weakness of his. Someone that could teach him something inside and outside the bedroom. Not cute dimples and a cocky grin. It’s just been a while since he got laid, he told himself. He was not interested in the garbage kid.

~~~~~

One late April afternoon, Ethan was in the Wine and Spirits store stocking up reds and whites when he heard a voice behind him. “Hey, Not Mr. McKinley!”

Jack was standing there in street clothes. Ethan had never seen him in anything outside of a full work jumper and without that stupid camouflage hat. He had jet black hair that went in different directions giving him the eternal look of bedhead, but it worked on him. Really worked. He also had dark green eyes the drew you in, especially when he smiled, which he was at the moment. And those damn dimples. Dimples that made Ethan’s stomach do a butterfly flip again.

He was wearing a yellow t-shirt and blue jeans and a pair of black, yellow and red Nikes. Really cute. And Ethan was able to see the definition in his arms, he worked out a bit. Not as skinny as Ethan originally thought. Ethan’s stomach jolted again, but he ignored it.

“Ethan.” He corrected his name.

“No, I’m Jack, remember?” Jack said.

Ethan said, “No, I’m…” but then he saw the sideways grin and the sparkle in Jack’s eyes. Ethan shook his head, turned back to what he was doing.

“Finally doing something fun on your off week?” Jack asked.

“Nope. Just pricing wine for the B&B.”

Jack was thoughtful. “Come out tonight. I’m meeting some friends around 8pm at the Red Rock Bar and Grill on Dunks Ferry Road, just a few blocks over from you.”

Ethan did not look up. “It’s Thursday, Jack.”

“So? People didn’t get drunk on Thursday nights where you’re from?”

“Not people who have jobs,” Ethan said.

Jack scoffed. “I have a job. I gotta be there at 5:30am every day. What’s your point?”

Ethan still did not look up. “My point is that your job doesn’t require a lot canlı bahis of brain activity, whereas my job requires me to be alert, of sound mind, think and function clearly. You can roll out of bed or roll directly from the bar and still dump trash. I can’t.”

Jack took a moment, then said, “Actually, studies have shown that drinking at moderate levels, approximately a glass of wine a day, lowers the risk of dementia by 77%. Red wine in particular has been known to help prevent coronary artery disease, especially in women. And, people who socially drink have richer social lives thus living happier and longer. So in 60 years I’ll be skinny dipping in Aspen with my inebriated friends, and you’ll probably have died 40 years earlier from dementia, alone and with a bad heart.”

Ethan had turned his head to look at Jack during his speech, surprised. Jack turned to walk away, but then turned back again. “Also, fuck you. I’m a lot smarter than you’ll ever know.”

He went into the next aisle leaving a stunned Ethan to stare after him. Jack grabbed two bottles of Jack Daniels humorously, and walked to the front, paid and left, never glancing back Ethan’s way.

Ethan though about Jack for the rest of the day. It was a nice gesture to invite him out, and he had no idea why he reacted that way. At 8pm he decided to get dressed and go to the Red Rock, at the very least to apologize for being condescending. And really, it’s not like he had anything to do tonight, his plan was to continue watching a show on Netflix he started earlier in the week. He dressed casual, jeans, button down solid color red shirt, brown loafers.

He walked the two blocks down, two blocks over to the Red Rock. It was relatively empty, but the back room had a few people in it. He walked over and saw Jack in the middle of the room telling a story that had everyone in stitches. There were about 10 people in the room. He stood at the door awkwardly.

Jack noticed and looked surprised. “Hey, Not Mr. McKinley decided to slum it with the townees!” He called out.

Ethan rolled his eyes and almost turned around to leave but Jack ran up to and grabbed his arm, smiled and handed him the beer he was drinking. “I’m glad you came,” he said sincerely.

He led him in and said, “Hey everyone. This is Ethan Starling. He bought McKinley’s place, turning it into a B&B.” Ethan was surprised he knew his full name.

Jack introduced Ethan to his family and friends. “This is June, my kid sister, Henrietta who we can’t call Etta anymore because she’s getting a fancy degree and Wilhelmina who we call Mina, they are my cousins. This is Brayden, Etta’s other half, Connor, Afia, Winter, Rick, Liam – that’s Stacy’s twin in case you didn’t know she had one. That’s Ben, we call him BJ, he runs Red Rock with his brother, Sam. Their dad Ben Jennings Sr. owns it, along with a couple of other businesses in Rhode Island. They are my closest neighbors.” Ethan shook hands with everyone.

Liam approached him first. “You’re my sister’s boss. She says the place is really coming along.”

They talked for a bit, then Ethan looked around. There was a cake on the table near the back that said Happy Birthday Jack on it. He looked at Jack who was on the other side of the room starting a pool game. He walked over to him. “It’s your birthday.”

“Yes. The big 23,” Jack said. “Contrary to what you think, I don’t get randomly drunk midweek unless it’s a special occasion. I’m Irish, but I’m not that Irish.” He winked and smiled again.

Those damn dimples. Those enticing green eyes. Ethan smiled back before he knew he was doing it. But then was serious. “I’m sorry about earlier. It was….elitist of me to talk to you like that.”

Jack raised an eyebrow. “Only elitist people use the term elitist. Just say you were being a dickhead. And you’re forgiven. Now come lose some money in this pool game, we need a fourth.”

They played teams, Jack and Henrietta, Ethan and Connor. Jack and Henrietta won the first round, Ethan and Connor won the second, then Ethan and Connor let them win the 3rd round. They moved back over to the others and hung out.

Jack found out a lot of about Ethan through his friends asking him the questions. He is originally from the Bronx, New York, and moved to Greenwich, Connecticut as a teen when his father got a big promotion. He graduated from UConn with an BS in Financial Management and got his MBA at Yale. He was a senior financial analyst for a medical device company until he quit his job last fall and moved to Rockville. “I just needed a slower pace for my son,” he told Henrietta and Brayden.

June and Ethan talked for a while. She was finishing up her second year at NYU, as an accounting major trying to figure out what to do with her degree. Since Ethan’s bachelors and masters is in financial management, they talked about different career options, especially in New York.

Ethan also found out things about Jack. He and his sister were raised by their uncle Henry, who owns an apple tree farm and business distribution where sell their apples up and down the east coast everywhere from farmer’s markets to supermarkets. When inquiring about their parents, June simply said, “They died when we were young. I don’t remember much and Jack doesn’t like talking about it.”

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