The Best Friend Read online Raleigh Ruebins (Red’s Tavern #1)

Categories Genre: Gay, GLBT, M-M Romance, Romance Tags Authors: Series: Red's Tavern Series by Raleigh Ruebins

Total pages in book: 91
Estimated words: 87392 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 437(@200wpm)___ 350(@250wpm)___ 291(@300wpm)

Read Online Books/Novels:

The Best Friend (Red's Tavern #1)

Author/Writer of Book/Novel:

Raleigh Ruebins

Book Information:

My best friend’s a former quarterback, and I’m a nerdy math teacher. He has no idea how badly I want him.
Back in high school, Mitch protected me from bullies and was at my side through tragedy. It didn’t matter that he was a football star and I was a mathlete, or that I was gay and he was straight. We stuck together like glue--until he married a girl and ran away.
Now Mitch is back home, and he’s a divorced single dad. His son is in my math class, and I collide with Mitch everywhere in this small town. When he starts bartending at the only local gay bar, I’m screwed. Red’s Tavern is my haven, but how can I fake it for other guys when I’m in love with the big jock behind the bar?
Then Mitch invites me into his bed, saying it's just for fun. But I’m addicted to him the second his body is on mine.
I’ve done the math a million times. I know the odds are bad, but I know I want him.
And now that he’s given me a taste, I can’t stop begging for more.
Books in Series:

Red's Tavern Series by Raleigh Ruebins

Books by Author:

Raleigh Ruebins



Woke up hard as diamond again, thinking about Mitch. The weird thing about best friends is you still dream of them, even if it’s been fifteen years since they up and moved their ass to Chicago.

The bottom of my empty pint glass hit the top of the wooden bar with a thud. I swallowed the last gulp of citrusy lager, already wishing I had more.

“So… you said you’re a math teacher?” the guy next to me was saying. He was trying hard to be polite. I’d started talking to him earlier in hopes that I could score a hookup for the night, but it was becoming more and more obvious that I was crashing and burning.

I nodded. “I teach math to Amberfield’s finest high school students. And you’re a… contractor?”

He frowned. “I’m a hair stylist.”

“Of course. I’m sorry,” I said. “I swear I’m not usually this forgetful.”

The beer churned in my stomach. I couldn’t even flirt right tonight. And of course I knew why I was falling flat on my ass with every guy I tried to pick up.

It was because none of these guys were Mitchell Price. None of these guys were my best friend.

My best friend who had moved back to town this week, after being gone for so damn long, and who decided he was moving back without telling me.

Mitchell knew I hated surprises. Fucking asshole. I loved him so much. And I was going to get to see him tomorrow for the first time in way too long.

“So, hair stylist,” I said to the guy next to me, who was poking at the maraschino cherry in his cocktail. “Is it fun?”

He sighed, swiveling to face me on his barstool. “Let’s cut the crap, okay? Obviously you don’t give a shit about what I do for a living.”

“Cut the crap? I—”

“I know I’m not the first guy you’ve tried to snag tonight.”

I sat up straighter, clutching my pint glass. “Okay. You’re not wrong. But I’m interested in what you do.”

He rolled his eyes. “Honestly, I don’t care. I didn’t come here to talk about cutting hair, I came here to suck someone’s dick.”

“A man who knows what he wants,” I said, still stunned that he was being so direct.

“You’re cute enough. Come with me to the bathroom.”

I definitely hadn’t been expecting that out of him.

“Really?” I said.

He lifted one eyebrow. “Yeah. Really.” He started to get up out of his chair, giving me a look that said hurry the fuck up and put your cock in my mouth.

Normally my dick would have perked up instantly. This was what I’d been trying to find: a guy who wanted me, no strings attached. But I felt nothing. Nada. Not even so much as a courtesy boner. It was like my dick had gone on strike for anyone other than Mitchell.

Which was bad, because my best friend wanted nothing to do with my penis.

The guy next to me sighed, gathering his jacket from the back of the chair. “Not gonna happen. Okay.”

“I’m so sorry,” I said, and I really meant it. “It’s not you, it’s… well, it’s me being in love with my straight best friend.”

The guy laughed and put on his jacket. “Oh, honey, then I’m the one who’s sorry,” he said. He leaned in, giving me a light hug, complete with a pat on the back. “You’ll be okay. But believe me, nobody ever converts a straight guy.”

“I’m not trying to convert him—”

He was already walking off, giving me a peace sign as he pushed through the big wooden front doors of the tavern. I turned away, forcing myself to focus my eyes on the racks of liquor behind the bar. Rainbow-colored tinsel hung behind all of the bottles, shimmering in the light.

Red’s Tavern was the only bar I ever bothered coming to. Hot, single gay men came here, and even if there weren’t that many gay men in Amberfield, Red’s was always my best bet. There were great tunes and sometimes even live music. The beer was fantastic, and Perry’s food was simple home cooking, but stupidly delicious.

But today it felt like the usual magic of the tavern was lost on me.

Red was the only bartender on duty right now, and he was giving me a look somewhere between pity and sympathy. He had witnessed me fail like this three times tonight, and bless his heart, he hadn’t started making fun of me yet.

“Hey, hun,” he said.

I shook my head. “Don’t even.”

There was the beginning of a smile playing across Red’s lips, complete with unmistakable pity and misguided affection.

“You know tequila shots are half off, right? Not that I think there’s any reason you might want to completely forget what’s been happening tonight, or anything...”

His tone was the same gentle but firm tone I used when I had to tell one of my students that they got an F on a math test. Red felt sorry for me, clearly.