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Uncorked 5


Shea Balik


Uncorked 5

Elden Richland didn’t want to waste money on an office. Instead, he worked from home, or, when he needed a change of scenery, from The Cure All, a local bar. Staring at Cabe Donovan, the bar owner, may not help Elden get any work done, but it was well worth it.

Cabe had been watching Elden come into The Cure All for months now. Elden might not be his normal type of date, but Cabe didn’t want typical, he wanted forever. He wanted Elden.

But what did a hot bar owner and a computer nerd, who didn’t like the taste of alcohol, have in common? Fireworks.

Warning: Alcohol consumption not only occurs in this book, it is encouraged, over-consumed and, ends with praying to the Porcelain God. Oh, and being naked. Don’t want to forget that. Although, maybe not in the way Cabe hoped.


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Sweet, Uncorked 5

Copyright © 2018 by Shea Balik

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED: This literary work may not be

reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, including

electronic or photographic reproduction, in whole or in part, without

express written permission.

All characters and events in this book are fictitious. Any resemblance

to actual persons living or dead is strictly coincidental.

Cover by: Harris Channing

Edited by: Avril Stepowski

Table of Contents
























Raise your glasses!

May we always have kindness in our hearts, fill our lives with love, and add a touch of sassy to your sweeter side.



“What the frog?” Elden Richland stared at the screen in disbelief. He’d done everything right, just like always, so why wouldn’t the addition to the new webpage he was designing save?

“Did you just say, what the frog?” The sexiest voice Elden knew spoke from just behind him.

Elden’s entire body froze. Except for his blood. That decided to not just heat up, but to rush to his neck and face until he was sure he looked like a big maraschino cherry. Why had he thought working at The Cure All Bar and Grill would be a good idea? And why couldn’t he stop saying his embarrassing phrases?

Elden hadn’t really expected it but he’d hoped if he ignored Cabe Donovan, the too gorgeous for words man would actually leave him alone. Boy, was he wrong.

Hazel eyes looked questioningly at Elden when he not only came around to face Elden, but pulled out a chair, turned it around and straddled it. He sat there with his well-muscled arms —most likely from carrying around kegs and cases of liquor— crossed over the top of the chair, with his chin on top as if he had all day to wait for Elden’s answer.

It wasn’t fair. How was his brain supposed to work when someone this stunningly beautiful was sitting there looking at him as if Elden were the only person in the room?

Elden struggled to find a way to explain that wouldn’t make him sound like an even bigger dork than he was. What came out of his mouth might have been even worse than just explaining himself, not that his inability to speak would have let him. “I…Uh…Who…What…I mean…”

His bumbling had Cabe’s lush mouth curving up and the corners of his eyes crinkle as he smiled at Elden. Or, more likely, made fun of him.

Elden was a nerd. He didn’t need to see people laughing at him or hearing them make fun of him to know that. Everything about Elden screamed, “geek.” It didn’t help that his already too youngish appearing face was emphasized by thick glasses, since he couldn’t stand to put anything in his eyes, making contacts impossible.

Then there was his name. Elden. What had his mother been thinking? She still hadn’t given him a good reason for saddling him with a name that had caused him endless years of teasing by his classmates while growing up. Then again, Elden wasn’t so sure there was a good enough reason for a parent ruining their child’s life by sealing their fate with a stupid name.

Constantly being made fun of was what had him hiding behind his computer for most of his life. Sure, it gave him a great career that he could do from almost anywhere, but it also was the last straw to get him inducted into the Nerd Hall of Fame.

The last thing Elden needed to do was cement that membership by admitting he couldn’t swear. His mother disapproved of vulgar language, so in his youth Elden had come up with unique ways of swearing without his mother knowing.

Now that he was an adult and no longer lived with his mother, Elden didn’t need to use the alternative terms, but he’d gotten used to saying them and couldn’t stop. Anyone who heard him made fun of his inability to cuss, but Elden couldn’t seem to break the habit.

“It’s okay if you don’t want to tell me what it means,” Cabe said with that easy smile he always wore. Elden couldn’t be sure if it was because he owned the bar and was doing it for the customers or if Cabe really was happy all the time.

Cabe pointed at the untouched chicken wrap and hard apple cider next to Elden. “Was there something wrong with the food today?”

“Oh…Uhm…I mean…No…I just…” More heat poured into Elden’s face as he couldn’t make a coherent sentence. No matter how much Elden loved to come into The Cure All so he could surreptitiously stare at Cabe, he really needed to stop or Cabe would end up thinking he was an idiot.

Slowly, Elden breathed in and then out, doing everything in his power to calm himself down so he could form more than random sounds. “I’m sure the wrap is as good as always, I've just gotten caught up in my work.”

Cabe reached over and picked up both the plate and the glass of cider. “I’ll just make you a new order and bring it out before the crowd starts to come in.”

Elton watched as Cabe headed into the back. His gaze zeroed in on the man’s tight butt. It wasn’t fair that the man’s jeans hugged him like they were molded to his body. Elden’s own jeans tended to hang on him, forcing him to tug them up or risk them falling a little too far.

No way was he letting anyone see his Star Wars boxers. That would only get him named President of that Nerd Hall of Fame. Even with a belt, Elden’s clothes rarely fit him well. That, coupled with his young appearing face, tended to make people think he was a teenager instead of a twenty-eight-year-old.

It wasn’t until the door to the kitchen swung shut behind Cabe, cutting off Elden’s view of his body, that Elden realized what Cabe had said. He glanced at the clock over the bar. Hoping it was wrong, he looked at his laptop. Sure enough it was ten minutes before five.

Great. He’d just wasted four hours of his day with nothing to show for it. It would be a pain, but Elden would have to stay up all night if he had any hope of getting this website ready for his meeting with the client tomorrow at three.

Even if he didn’t get any sleep, it would have been worth it to see Cabe. Someone like Elden didn’t stand a chance with a man like Cabe, but that didn’t mean he couldn’t look. Right?

Pushing that depressing thought from his mind, Elden frowned at the error still taunting him on his computer screen. Tapping on a few keys he went back to where he’d last successfully saved his work and started over.

Deeply engrossed in what he was doing, Elden, for once, hadn’t noticed Cabe come out of the kitchen until he once more sat down at the table with him. A newly made chicken wrap along with a cold hard apple cider was next to his computer. There was also another plate with grilled chicken and steamed broccoli in front of Cabe.

Those hazel eyes were watching him closely. “You need to eat.” Cabe may have kept his tone pleasant but there was an edge of steel behind it that told Elden he wasn’t going to take no for an answer. That was made even clearer when Cabe reached over and pulled the computer away from Elden and pushed his plate in front of him.

All Elden could do was sit there stunned, staring at the plate in front of Cabe. “I…Are…Don’t…Duck water,” he almost yelled at the end when once more Elden couldn’t seem to find his words.

“Duck water?” Cabe asked with a smile.

The heat raged in Elden’s face to the point he was sure there must be smoke coming out of his ears. There really was no hope for him, was there?

But instead of making fun of his odd words, Cabe just said, “One day, I hope you’ll tell me what all these phrases mean.” Then, as if Elden hadn’t proven to be the weirdo he knew he was, Cabe picked up his knife and fork and started to eat.

Elden didn’t know what to make of Cabe’s behavior. It went against anyone else who Elden encountered. Then again, Cabe had always seemed to be the kind of person who went out of his way to be nice to others. Why else would he let Elden sit at one of his tables for hours at a time barely ordering anything more than a sandwich and one drink?

Elden knew he should have more than one cider, but, if he were honest, he really didn’t like the taste. Wine was even worse. But beer? Elden shuddered. That was truly horrible. How anyone could drink something that disgusting was beyond Elden’s comprehension.

“Eat.” Cabe pointed to Elden’s wrap before picking up a frosty mug that Elden was fairly certain contained beer, based on the foamy head.

As much as he would like to have something in common with Cabe, there was no way Elden was ever going to like beer. So he picked up his wrap and took a bite.

A moan slipped from his lips as the flavors slid over his taste buds. The slight heat from the combination of spices only enhanced the cheesy goodness combined with the salty bacon that turned the chicken wrap into a work of art.

That smile that Elden loved to look at was directed at him again. “Either you like it or you were so hungry you were ready to eat this table,” Cabe joked.

For the first time that day, Elden managed to string a sentence together without making a fool of himself first. “This is the best. Why do you think I come in here nearly every day and order it?”

“I was kind of hoping you came in here to see me,” Cabe teased with a wink.

That was all it took for Elden’s face to flame once more. If he kept this up, Elden was sure to combust before the day was over.


As busy as Cabe Donovan was when the after work crowd started to pour into The Cure All, he hadn’t missed the moment when Elden stood to leave. For the first time since he’d opened his dream bar, Cabe left his customers waiting as he rushed over to Elden before he had a chance to sneak out the door.

“Hey, Elden, I was hoping you might come to my New Year’s Eve party.” Already seeing the no in Elden’s sweet brown eyes that reminded Cabe of the cinnamon he loved sprinkled on his toast. “I know crowds aren’t normally your thing, but I promise it’s going to be a lot of fun.”

Still, Elden didn’t look even close to agreeing. “I’m even opening the rooftop to watch the fireworks. The first cider is on me,” he added even though Cabe was fairly certain Elden didn’t even like cider.

The sweetest blush had covered Elden’s entire face as it usually did whenever Cabe talked to him. He was dying to ask if that pretty color only happened with Cabe or if anyone he spoke to caused it. Was it wrong that Cabe wanted it to be just him?

“Uhm…I don’t…I mean…Thank you for asking…” Cabe wasn’t sure whether the blushing or the way Elden stumbled over his words caused his dick to twitch more in interest. Elden was just too damn adorable for words.

“Good.” Cabe purposefully mistook what he knew was going to be Elden’s refusal to come. “I’ll see you then. In fact, why don’t you come a little early, say seven. That way we can eat before the crowd makes it too hard for me to spend much time with you.”

Taking a huge chance, Cabe leaned in and kissed Elden’s cheek before turning on his heel and striding back to the bar. No way was he giving Elden time to say no, not that the timid man would have managed to get the word out.

For most, Elden was nothing more than a computer nerd who was too often overlooked. That wasn’t the case for Cabe. From the moment Elden had entered The Cure All four months ago, he’d been obsessed with the sweet, yet extremely shy, man.

There was just something about those thick glasses that made his cinnamon colored eyes appear owlish. It probably shouldn’t be a turn on, but that’s exactly what it was for Cabe. Oh, and his smile…Cabe bit back a moan as he dipped under the bar to get back to work with an extra spring in his step, thinking about the way Elden’s entire face lit up whenever he smiled.

It had become Cabe’s goal in life to see it as often as possible. That wasn’t easy since Elden tended to freeze up whenever Cabe came near.

“You better not hurt that boy,” Shine said as he brought a case of his newest moonshine in from the back.

Annoyed that Shine was butting into his life, Cabe scowled at him. “You’re late. I’m too busy to put that stuff away.”

Shine grinned at him. “That’s why I’m going to do it for you.” Then his entire face became serious as he said, “but I’ll take it all back to the store if you’re only messing with that sweet kid.”

Cabe rolled his eyes at the empty threat. “First of all, we both know my bar sells more of your moonshine than all the other bars in this town.” Considering there were only two others, one of which dealt mostly with wine and the other specialized in craft beers, it was no wonder.

“So we know you’d never stop selling your moonshine to me. Second,” and for Cabe the most important, “have you ever known me to go around breaking other men’s hearts?”

Cabe had been born and raised in Dahlonia right along with Shine. Cabe might have been class president and short stop for their high school baseball team, but he hadn’t taken advantage of his good looks, smarts, or natural athleticism when it came to dating.

Shine cocked his head and narrowed his gaze on Cabe for a moment. “Now that you mention it, I’ve never known you to be anything other than a gentleman, but that doesn’t mean a zebra can’t change its spots.”

“You mean stripes,” Cabe corrected without slowing down, filling the orders that were coming fast and furious from the waitstaff as they punched the drinks into their tablets.

“Why would zebras change their stripes?” Shine scratched his chin. “They're supposed to have stripes. It’s the ones who have spots you need to watch out for.”

Cabe actually stopped what he was doing to stare dumbfounded at Shine. “You might want to limit how much moonshine you’re drinking,” Cabe told him as he went back to what he was doing.

“You’re not wrong,” Shine said with a shrug. “Then again, it’s usually the only way I can deal with the idiots of the world.”

Cabe snorted at that. Shine definitely had a way of putting things that either made Cabe scratch his head in confusion or laugh his ass off.

“By the way, I’ve added a case of our new blend for New Year’s. It’s called Midnight Kiss and has an infusion of cranberry and amaretto.”

“Is it any good?” With Shine’s new partner, Montague, their flavors had improved dramatically, but that didn’t mean it would stay that way.

“No,” Shine said with a straight face. “I thought I would pawn off something horrible tasting just to see if you’d notice.” Faster than Cabe had been able to see him, Shine had pulled out a box cutter from his pocket, cut open the top of the box and opened a jar.

Then he picked up two glasses and poured a too generous amount in each if he expected Cabe to taste it. No way was he going to be able to drink that much moonshine and still work. He still wasn’t sure how Shine managed. Sure, the guy drank the stuff all the time, but Cabe would be falling down drunk if he even tried to drink half of what Shine did in a day.

Cabe finished the order he was working on and took the glass from Shine. Taking a sip, but no more, he let the flavors sit on his tongue for a moment before swallowing. “Damn, Shine. This is good.”

“Hey, I’d like to try it,” one of the regulars at the bar called out along with two others.

Before Cabe knew it, he and Shine had emptied half the case. “I guess I’ll have to go bring you one more,” Shine grinned, clearly happy so many people had liked his new creation.

“You might want to make that two,” Cabe told him. “We’ll see how it does tonight and then I’ll let you know how many I’ll need through the New Year’s party.”

“No worries,” Shine told him. “Montague and I will be around. Just call if you need more.” As he reached the doorway to the back room, Shine turned back to him. “By the way, good job on getting Elden to agree to a date without realizing that what it is.”

Cabe grinned. It had been brilliant, assuming Elden showed up. “Yeah, well, he still might not come, so don’t go patting me on the back just yet.”

“You can only lead a horse to water, not make him drink,” Shine said with a wink as he walked out.

Not able to help it, Cabe chuckled. Shine definitely had a way of putting things. Though, he was not wrong. If Elden thought even for a second Cabe had actually intended New Year’s Eve to be a date – well, as close to one as Cabe could manage when owning a bar – the sweet man would never have agreed. As it was, there was at best a fifty-fifty shot of him being there.

He wasn’t sure why Elden felt that someone like Cabe wouldn’t be interested in him, but he’d made it clear the few times Cabe had tried to ask him out in the past. With some luck, this time Elden wouldn’t realize what was happening until they were counting down the seconds until midnight when Cabe fully intended to get his first kiss from those lush lips that had been calling to him for months now.

The rest of the night stayed busy. It was technically a work night, but because of the Christmas holiday and the New Year holiday, there were a lot of people off. It wasn’t until three before Cabe was able to finally go home.

He was once more thankful he’d bought a home only two blocks from the main square. Driving after a long day and night at the bar, especially when there had been a bit of snow on the ground, would have been hell.

Dropping his keys onto the table near the door, Cabe stripped on his way to the bedroom, not caring where the clothes landed. He’d get them in the morning. Right now, he needed a shower and bed.

Happy that the bar he’d worked hard to open was a success, Cabe only wished his personal life was doing as well. An image of cinnamon eyes behind thick rimmed glasses had his cock firming up as he stepped into the shower.

He tried to ignore his rising dick, but it became impossible as he imagined Elden naked with water dripping down his slim form. Cabe usually dated men as big as he was, not that he was huge, but at six-foot and just shy of two hundred pounds without an inch of fat on him, Cabe wasn’t a slouch, either.

Elden was not only several inched shorter than him, he couldn’t have weighed more than a hundred and forty, probably even less. Yet, there was something about him that had Cabe wanting to get to know him better. A whole lot better, if his hard dick had anything to say about it.

Taking himself in hand, Cabe let out a groan as pleasure coursed through his veins. His head rolled back onto his shoulders as the thought of Elden’s mouth on him had him giving himself several tugs.

Cabe reached out for the body wash with his other hand and poured it over his dick as he kept stroking. Heat crawled along his flesh as he pictured Eldon on his knees with those sweet eyes looking up at him. Lush pink lips would be stretched around him as Elden held onto Cabe’s hips while his head bobbed all the way down.

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