Monday, July 27, 2015

The Hired Man excerpt by Dorien Grey


In this newly revised edition of The Hired Hand, private investigator Dick Hardesty is hired by businessman Stuart Anderson to conduct routine background checks on potential store managers, he becomes reacquainted with a former trick, Phil Stark, who has undergone an amazing transformation from bar hustler to professional escort. When Anderson is murdered, Hardesty is hired by the escort services owners, Arnold and Iris Glick, to keep Phil and the agency away from police scrutiny. Two subsequent murders make this impossible, and Hardesty embarks on a mission to find the identity of the killer


The Hired Man
Untreed Reads (July 14, 2015)
  • ISBN-10: 1611879280
  • ISBN-13: 978-1611879285


Excerpt:

I must have finished the conversation with Tim somehow because suddenly I was aware that I was sitting there, with the phone still in my hand, listening to a dial tone, afraid to move for fear I would throw up. 

Slowly, I eased the phone back onto the cradle and leaned forward with my elbows on my desk and cupped my hands over my nose and mouth, forcing myself to take slow, deep breaths.

I had to tell Phil, but I couldn’t do it by phone. When the nausea had subsided, I let my motor responses take over. They got me out of the chair, walked me to the door, made sure it was locked behind me, then walked me to the elevator. By the time I reached my car, I was sufficiently pulled together to let my mind, which had been spinning wildly out of control, shift into gear.

How was I going to tell Phil? What could I say? I didn’t even know Billy’s last name, which meant that Phil was going to have to go with me to the coroner’s office to try to identify the body.

Having sex with a guy doesn’t make you best friends, and I’d only met Billy a handful of times, if that. But what I knew of him I liked. A lot. He was funny and sexy as all hell, and sweet and young, and beautiful and full of life and some son of a bitch had taken all that away from him and I still thought I might throw up.
A blaring horn from the car behind me made me realize the light had turned green, and I moved along.
I parked about half a block from Phil’s apartment and idly thought I should have brought the photo Billy had lent me of Phil and Anderson and Glen O’Banyon and whoever else in hell it was in there with them. I walked down the hallway to Billy’s…. no, to Phil’s…apartment and knocked on the door. A full minute went by and I was about to knock again when the door opened. Phil took one look at my face and all the color drained from his own. His eyes riveted onto my own, as though he thought they might help keep him from falling down. “What is it, Dick?” he asked, though I think he knew.

“It’s Billy,” I managed to say. “He….”

“Is he hurt?” he asked. “Is he in the hospital?”

I shook my head.

Phil looked at me and duplicated my head shake, in slow motion. His eyes filled with tears and his lower lip began to quiver. He started to say “No,” but couldn’t make it. I moved forward and put my arms around him as he put his head on my shoulder and started crying like the very little boy who lives somewhere deep inside us all.

The Hired Man is available in paperback edition, ebook (Kindle and other) editions, audiobook edition.  Check these links: - click Amazon    Untreed Reads    Audible Books 

www,doriengrey.com
doriengrey@gmail.com

Monday, July 20, 2015

Lola Dances excerpt by Victor J Banis


Sometimes funny, sometimes tragic and often bawdy, Lola Dances, in this new edition by Victor J Banis, ranges from the 1850 slums of the Bowery to the mining camps of California and Montana, to the Barbary Coast of San Francisco.
Little Terry Murphy, pretty and effeminate, dreams of becoming a dancer. Raped by a drunken profligate and threatened with prison, Terry flees the Bowery to disappear into the wilderness of the West. In the rugged settlement of Alder Gulch, he stands out like a sore thumb among the camp’s macho inhabitants – until the day he puts on a dress and dances for the unsuspecting miners. As beautiful Lola Valdez, fame and fortune are within reach, and so, ultimately, is love.




Lola Dances
Rocky Ridge Books (6/19/2015)
  • ISBN-10: 162622028X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1626220287

Excerpt:

Joshua and Brian had barely arrived in Butte when an early winter set in. They were just able to get a crude cabin up and get some supplies in before a major blizzard struck. It snowed without stopping for a full week, stopped for a day, and began to snow again, the sheets of white blown about in a strenuous wind that roared down from the mountains. Gray wolves drifted into town like wisps of smoke, and sometimes got bold enough to scratch at cabin doors.

In no time, Joshua and Brian were snowed in. For several weeks they went outside no more than was essential, and sat instead for hours before their stove, so close that sometimes their boots got scorched.

"Of all the rotten luck," Brian grumbled, pacing the floor like a caged mountain lion. He, at least, could pace; the cabin's roof was too low for the taller Joshua even to stand up without ducking his head. "We might be stuck in here till spring, the way it's snowing out there."

"Not much we can do about it, the way I see it," Joshua said. "We've got plenty of whisky, haven't we, and food enough if we're careful, and as soon as the snow lets up, I'm going to cut some more wood. Doesn't look like we'll be doing much mining, but we'll get by all right."

"That's easy for you to say."

"What's that supposed to mean?" Joshua asked him, puzzled. "Looks to me like we're in the same boat at this point."

Brian had been thinking about Terry, and now he was going to be stuck in a cabin for weeks, maybe for months, with Joshua, who he doubted was a likely candidate to take Terry's place.

It had never occurred to him that he might miss his brother in that way, but it hadn't taken him long to begin to miss his steady diet of sex. And the longer he went without, the better his memories of how good it had felt.

He couldn't very well say that to Joshua, however. "Nothing," he said instead. "I'm just riled, is all. All this damn snow. Might have been better to stay where we was."

 "Too late to be thinking of that," Joshua said.

Brian grunted and went to throw some more wood in the stove. Joshua watched him and thought about what Terry had said, about him and Brian. Nothing like that had come up between them. At first, when Brian had suggested Joshua come with him, Joshua had wondered if Brian had any inkling of what had happened with him and Terry, like maybe Terry had told his brother. For the first day or so, he'd been alert for any untoward movement on Brian's part, half expecting to turn and find Brian's gun trained on him.

Nothing of the sort had happened, though, and Brian had said and done nothing in all this time to indicate that he had any idea of that business, and Joshua had decided after all that he had no suspicions and began to breathe easier.

They almost never talked about Terry at all, and then only obliquely. Brian asked one evening, out of the blue, "That dancer that came to the Gulch just before we headed out," and paused. "To The Dollar. Remember?"

"Lola Valdez?" Joshua asked, surprised to have that brought up.

"Was that her name? Well, what did you think of her?"

Joshua took a moment to consider anew what Brian might or might not know.

"What do you mean, what did I think of her?" he asked cautiously. "She was a pretty thing, wasn't she? Had most of those miners standing on three legs, seemed like to me. What is it you're wondering about?"

Brian gave him a long look. "Nothing," he said with a shrug. "I was just wondering, is all. What you thought of her."

"She was just a dancer, was all," Joshua said. "Pretty enough, I guess. If you like dancers."

Brian seemed content to leave it at that.
#
Supplies quickly began to run low. There was a little general store, with a table for poker, run by a bear of a man named Angelo, but he was no better prepared for the unexpectedly early winter than the hundred or so miners in the camp, and soon enough salt and flour grew scarce, and most everything else not long after.

Luckily, almost the first thing Brian and Joshua had done when they got there was to stock up. Many of the miners had little in their pockets by the time they arrived at the crude camp, expecting with the prospector's optimism to find enough gold dust right off to provide for themselves, and quickly chagrined to find out how misguided the expectations had been, but Brian and Joshua were luckier than most. Brian had the money he had taken from Terry, although he did not mention its source to his partner, and Joshua had brought with him the rest of the stake his father had given him when he sent him west.

As a result, they at least faced the winter with plenty of coffee and plenty of whisky, and enough beans to tide them over. They had killed a deer shortly after arriving, and the venison hung in the rear of their cabin, along with a big side of questionable beef they had purchased from Angelo, much of which had been made into jerky, the rest of it gradually growing its own overcoat of mold. By now, they were so used to it they never even noticed the smell.

Even so, by Christmas they'd had to reduce their three meals a day to two, as a precaution, and then to one, and they pretended they didn't hear their bellies complain, and kept a close eye out in case anyone started envying their provisions.

"You think this is bad," Brian said, "Christ, this is a damn picnic, I tell you. Back in the states, in the Five Points, people lived two and three families together, sometimes a hog, too, or chickens, in rooms so dark you couldn't see your hand in front of your face, and a man could never say for sure whether he'd fucked another man's wife or his own, or one of his kids, even, and didn't much care which, either, and women would lay drunk all day long in the shit piles they called their back yards. This ain't nothing, I tell you."

"What is it you came for, anyway, Brian?" Joshua asked him one day. "Was it just the money, is all?"

They were sitting by the stove, the toes of their boots beginning to scorch, and Brian was so long answering, Joshua thought maybe he hadn't heard the question, or didn't mean to answer it at all.


"I don't exactly know," he said finally. "I used to think it was the money, but maybe it was just getting out of there, as much as anything, getting away from, well, The Bowery, or something, anyway. Only, it don't seem like I've got yet wherever it is I was going." He looked around, at the dirt floor and the empty tin cans scattered on it, and the jerky hanging in the corner. "Sure as hell, this ain't it. I don't know where is, though."


For more excerpts from Lola Dances, see entries form April 20, 2015: May 13, 2013; January 14,2013; and February 11, 2008.

To purchase Lola Dances in paperback edition, click here
To purchase Lola Dances in Kindle edition,  click here


Monday, July 6, 2015

Played! – #2 in The Shamwell Tales - excerpt by JL Merrow



All the world’s a stage…but real-life lessons are hidden in the heart.  
In Played, by JL Merrow, though Tristan must join his family’s New York firm at summer’s end—no more farting around on stage, as his father so bluntly puts it—he can’t resist when Shamwell’s local amateur dramatics society begs him to take a role in A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

The bonus: giving private acting lessons to a local handyman who’s been curiously resistant to Tristan’s advances. Not only is Con delicious, there’s fifty pounds riding on Tristan getting him in his bed.

A late-diagnosed dyslexic, Con’s never dared to act, convinced he’d never be able to learn his lines. But with Tristan’s help, he takes the chance. Trouble is, the last time Con fell for a guy, he ended up getting his heart broken. And with Tristan due to leave the country soon, Con is determined not to start anything that’s bound to finish badly.
Just as Tristan thinks he’s finally won Con’s heart—and given his own in return—disaster strikes. And the curtain may have fallen forever on their chance for happiness.
Warning: contains a surfeit of Bottoms and asses, together with enough mangled quotations to have the Bard of Avon gyrating in his grave
Played
Samhain Publishing (June 30, 2015)
  • ISBN-10: 1619229722
  • ISBN-13: 978-1619229723

Excerpt:

Chapter One

 A Plague on Both Your Houses

There was a frog in the kitchen.

Again.

Tristan crouched down to glare at it, quite certain that such incursions would not have been tolerated had Nanna Geary still been alive. And while she had now, at the ridiculously young age of eighty-two, passed on to her reward, he was damned if he’d let her house be invaded on his watch.

The frog stared back at him with an inscrutable amphibian gaze.

“This,” he told it firmly, “has got to stop. Do I hop into your pond and frolic among the lily pads? I do not. So why you feel you can make free of my living area, I really cannot imagine.”

The frog blinked once. Then, in a series of spring-loaded manoeuvres almost too quick for Tristan’s startled eyes to follow, it hopped behind the fridge.

Damn it. This called for desperate measures.

Tristan picked up Nanna Geary’s phone and dialled a number he’d had the foresight to memorise.

“Yeah?” The voice was deep in timbre, yet clearly young. Excellent.

“Hello. I perused your advertisement in our local emporium. All—

“You what?”

“I read your card in Tesco,” Tristan clarified with a sigh. Some people had no appreciation for the beauties of the English language. “All household job’s—I assume the apostrophe was ironic?—done, resonible rates.”

“Er, yeah.” The man on the other end of the phone sounded somewhat nonplussed, possibly due to the way Tristan had stressed the “ibble” at the end of resonible. “What’s the problem?”

“Biblical.”

“What?”

“I have a plague of frogs.”

Pause. “Is this a joke?”

“If it is, it’s on me. I keep coming down in the morning to find a frog in my kitchen. Not something one wants to see before one’s first cup of coffee. And let me tell you, I’m something of a connoisseur of unwelcome morning sights.” At least, Tristan comforted himself, this one hadn’t been in bed with him.

Yet.

He wouldn’t put anything past the vile green creature. It was probably hoping for a kiss, and far be it from Tristan to brag, but he had an impressively wide experience of where kisses tended to lead.

Over his dead body, in this particular instance.

A frog,” the handyman was saying. There was another pause. “So technically, yeah, that’s a plague of frog. One of ’em.”

“Semantics. The plural, in this case, may be taken to include the singular.”

“Right… Look, I think you want pest control, anyhow.”

Finally we reach agreement. So how soon can you be here?”

“No, I mean you want someone who works in pest control. Um. You’re in the village, right?”

Tristan rolled his eyes. “I’m certainly in a village. However, there appears to be an elegant sufficiency of villages in this vicinity. Perhaps one might essay a tad more specificity, hmm?”

There was a silence, then the voice on the other end was back. “Well, go on, then. Essay me specific.”

Tristan frowned. Unless he was very much mistaken, there had been a soupçon of sarcasm in the handyman’s tone. “Shamwell,” he said shortly.

“Thought so. Right. I’ve got this mate. Where are you? I’ll send him round.”

“Excuse me? I’m sorry, I believe I must have had some kind of cataleptic fit and missed the part of the conversation where I told you to feel free to invite all your friends to my house. Perhaps you’d like to create a Facebook event, make it a free-for-all—”

“Look, do you want rid of this frog or not?”

Obviously.”

“Then lemme give Sean a call. He’s a professional. What’s your address?”

Tristan sighed. “Twenty-two, Valley Crescent.”

There was a pause. “That’s Mrs. Geary’s house.”
“Was.” Tristan’s voice came out perhaps a little on the sharp side. He missed Nanna Geary. She’d always loved to hear about Tristan’s latest triumph on the stage, and she’d certainly never told him to go and get a proper job. “Now it’s mine.”

“Right.” The handyman’s tone was equally abrupt. “I’ll send Sean over.”

“Immediately?”

“Well, he’s probably on a job right now, but soon as he can make it, yeah.”

“Make it soon. This is an emergency.” Tristan hung up. It was often best not to give these people a chance to make excuses.

Then he went back to sorting through Nanna Geary’s belongings. It was, Tristan had to admit, not proceeding as quickly as it might. He kept getting distracted by memories from his childhood. He’d been set back half an hour already this morning by coming across her old boiled wool jacket, a stiff heavy thing in the vilest shade of green imaginable—really, next to it, this morning’s uninvited visitor would be a thing of beauty. The smell of wet dogs and camphor emanating from it had taken Tristan right back to rainy afternoons playing games of rummy in a dripping gazebo, because Nanna Geary thought boys needed fresh air even when the weather was dreadful… He sighed and folded it reverently before adding it to the charity shop pile.

Tristan was knee-deep in women’s underwear when the doorbell rang. Most of it was of the sturdy thermal variety, but he’d been shocked and delighted to find some black lace nestling at the back of the drawer of, well, drawers. “Nanna Geary, you saucy little minx,” he murmured as he got to his feet, detached a wayward suspender belt from his sleeve and made his way downstairs.

There was no hall, as such, in Nanna Geary’s house. The front door opened directly from what she had liked to call the living room, comprising as it did both lounge area and dining room. Tristan strode along its length and flung the door wide.

The man looming awkwardly on the doormat was delicious. Tall, muscular and delightfully rough around the edges, with dark stubble on his chin and unruly jet-black hair. He was casually dressed in jeans and a singlet, perfectly accessorised with a touch of the grime of honest toil. Things were definitely looking up. And up, and up. Actually, the man’s height was bordering on the offensive, but Tristan was a forgiving sort. He beamed at the stranger and barely restrained himself from a hel-looo gorgeous. “You must be Sean.”

The man’s face twisted, and he rubbed the back of his neck, displaying some nicely honed triceps and a tuft of armpit hair. Tristan’s inner princess swooned dramatically. “Yeah, about that. Sorry. Sean says he don’t do frogs, ’cos they’re not classed as pests. Says they’re good for slugs and all. I’m Con.”

Twitter - @jlmerrow


Monday, June 29, 2015

Take This Man (5th Collection

A collection of romantic erotica focused on male couples in committed relationships. Edited by Neil Plakcy, Take This Man takes a close look at how much sexier an encounter can be when the two men involved have been together for long enough to matter.


Take This Man
Cleis Press (May 14, 2015)


Excerpt 5 from Take This Man


From “A Ride Home” by Brent Archer

Alan pulled a chair from the dining room table and placed it opposite him. “This isn’t the end of the world. In fact, it’s a fortuitous change of events.”

Bryant’s shoulders tightened as his brow furrowed. “What do you mean? I might have to move back in with my grandparents in Spokane. If I leave Seattle, I likely won’t be able to come back.”

Alan’s eyes widened. “That can’t happen.”

Alan’s words took a moment to register through Bryant’s haze of worry. He raised an eyebrow. “Why’s 

that?”

“Because I love you.”

Bryant’s mouth dropped open. “What?”

Alan smiled. “I love you, and I want us to be together. So here’s my proposition. Move in with me. My apartment has two bedrooms. You can put your stuff in one of them, and we can have hot monkey sex in the other as often as we want.”

Speechless, Bryant put his hand to his forehead.

Alan leaned forward in his chair toward the shocked young man. “We can do two months before you need to worry about helping financially. That’ll give you plenty of time to get a new job. You’re smart and resourceful, so I’ve no doubt you’ll land something quickly. My sister moved out three weeks ago, so there’s plenty of room.”

Bryant’s face flushed with warmth. Alan wanted him. Truly wanted him. He thought about their friendship, and how much he enjoyed their time together. He knew he loved Alan, no question in his mind.

“Are you sure? I’m starting over from nothing here.”

“No you’re not. You have a college degree, work experience, and all the sex you could possibly want. You only need a good man to come home to every night. That’s what I’m missing, too. We already spend a lot of time together. Let’s make it official.”

Bryant fought down tears as he pushed forward off the futon and kneeling on the floor wrapped his arms around Alan still seated in the chair. “Thank you.”

From “Wedding Day Jitters” by Rob  Rosen

 woke up in a cold sweat, eyes stinging, head pounding. “I think I’m dying,” I lamented, wiping the torrent 

off my forehead and groaning as I did so.
J
John, my partner, snorted. “No, Peter; just getting married. Now go back to sleep.”
But it’s already light outside.”

The snort repeated. “That’s the moon, dearest.”

“Oh.”

“Yeah, oh.” He rolled towards me and took my hand in his before replacing the snort with a heavy sigh. 

“Why so nervous, anyway? Everything’s been taken care of.”

A list began rolling in my head before spewing forth from between my parched lips. “What if it rains? What if no one shows? What if everyone shows? Did I put the stamps on all the invitations or did I miss some? Did I pay the caterer, the minister, the rental hall, the florist? Does my tux fit? Do I look fat in it?”

He squeezed my hand. “Please stop, Peter. Now I’m nervous.”

“See.”

He huffed while I puffed, both of us staring up at the ceiling, my heart beating out a mad samba in my chest. 

“So much for sleeping.” He looked over my shoulder at the alarm clock on the nightstand “Only eight more hours to go.”

The pit in my stomach ripened into an overgrown melon. “Plus six minutes.” I gulped. “Make that five.” The gulp repeated. “And counting.”

He slapped the bed and then quickly sprung up. “Okay, enough of this. Put your shorts on; we’re going for a jog.”
I stared at him incredulously. “At this hour?”

He tilted his head my way. “Any better ideas? Besides, it always relaxes you.”

“So does a Xanax, a margarita, and a Golden Girls marathon. Not necessarily in the order.” I reconsidered. 

“Okay, exactly in that order.”

He tossed me my shorts. “No Xanax, the bars are all closed, nothing on TV worth watching. Or, in two more hours, we can either watch Sunday morning prayer services, Sesame Street, or perhaps expand our cable service. Take your pick.”

I grabbed for the shorts and lumbered out of bed, grumbling all the while. “Really, no Xanax?”

He shrugged. “Gave the last one to your mom.”

I couldn’t help but chuckle. “Now you know where I get my neuroses from.”

“Trust me,” he retorted, “I know. And I’m marrying you just the same.”


To purchase, click here


Author's question:  Do you eat while writing? Before?  After?

Monday, June 22, 2015

Take This Man (4th Collection of) short stories edited by Neil Plakcy





A collection of romantic erotica focused on male couples in committed relationships. Edited by Neil Plakcy, Take This Man takes a close look at how much sexier an encounter can be when the two men involved have been together for long enough to matter.


Take This Man
Cleis Press (May 14, 2015)


Excerpt 4 from Take This Man

From “Inkstained” by Krista Merle

Without even a cursory knock, the brass handle turns and the heavy oak door to my study opens, which can mean only one person. The man I was on my way to find.

“Oh good, you’re not working,” David, my majordomo, says as he walks in, his eyes riveted to the leather bound appointment book that is never further than arms’ reach away.

“I was. It’s not going as smoothly as I might have wished,” I say, my eyes taking in every lean, wiry inch of him. His light hair is smoothed back and tucked behind his ears, and he’s dressed in the same thing he wears every day, even though I never assigned him a uniform: black jacket and breeches with a soft white shirt and a simply knotted cravat. As he walks I can see leather patches on the insides of his knees, which makes me smile since I’d wager my fortune he’s never been astride a horse. Tall, black boots, polished so highly that they reflect the flickering light coming from the fireplace, encase his calves to just below his knee.

He makes a sympathetic noise and turns a page in his book. He still hasn’t met my eyes, let alone nodded or, heaven forbid, bowed. He’s lucky I don’t stand on ceremony.

“God’s sake, man, what is in that book that could possibly be so interesting?”

Finally, his eyes lift. Bright blue and deceptively innocent. I widen my stance, my shaft swelling already.

“I was just reviewing the market schedule for the tenant farmers and I’m concerned-”

Laughter from outside the door cuts him off and we turn to look. I lift an eyebrow at David and he sighs.

“The rest of the staff had a bit of a celebration at tea this afternoon,” he says.

“Was there a reason for this celebration? Which, from the sounds of things, involved more than one bottle of my imported French wine? Men died bringing that across the channel, you know.”

The corners of David’s mouth curl up in a loose smile. He didn’t look at all ashamed. “Perhaps just a few bottles. I joined your household a year ago. Apparently that’s all the excuse they need to drink in the afternoon.”

I laugh, feeling instantly more relaxed. Bugger the novel. This is far more important. “I suppose it has been a year already. I’m ashamed to say I hadn’t thought of it.” Which isn’t the entire truth; I was very aware of how long he had been with me.

A year ago he’d presented himself at my front door and all but demanded a job. I’d been amused and, to be honest, a little taken aback. But more than anything I was intrigued. He’d proven himself smart and well-spoken but in the same way a pair of new boots shines – bright and clear, but without that broken-in patina. 

He’d been newly polished. I’d immediately wanted to scuff him up a bit.

In my mind, our real anniversary isn’t for another three weeks. 

From “Blue Heart” by Michael Bracken

My first three weeks on the job, Gary and I often worked the same shift behind the counter, rolling burritos for a never-ending stream of customers at the popular downtown restaurant that employed us. Our conversation, limited as it was, never became personal, so I had no reason to think he was interested in me 
until we were walking out of the restaurant at the end of our shift one Saturday night.

The restaurant had closed at midnight, and it had taken almost half an hour for employees to clean up, clock out, and make our way out the back door. I had just reached my car and opened the door when Gary called to me.

“Dwayne?” He pronounced my name as a single syllable, not as two syllables the way my family and friends 
did back home.

I turned.

“Can I hitch a ride?” He explained that his car was in the shop after a fender bender with a clueless coed who’d been talking to her passenger when she plowed her car into the back of his at a stoplight near 
campus.

“Sure.”

I climbed into the driver’s seat and then reached across to unlock the passenger door. Gary climbed in beside me, provided directions, and less than ten minutes later I pulled my car into his apartment building’s 
parking lot.

“You in a hurry?” he asked.

I shook my head.

“Want to come up for a beer?”

I had no other plans so I found an empty parking spot and pulled my car into it. Then I followed Gary into the building and upstairs to his second-floor apartment, a one-bedroom much nicer than the exterior of the building suggested it would be.

He led me into the kitchen, opened two bottles of Lone Star beer he retrieved from the fridge, and handed one to me. As I pressed the bottle to my lips and tilted it upward to take my first drink, Gary said, “I’ve seen you sneaking glances at my ass.”

I quickly swallowed so that I wouldn’t spit out my beer. I started to sputter a protest as I lowered the bottle 
from my lips.

He stopped me. “It’s okay,” he said. “I’ve noticed yours, too.”

My cock twitched in my pants when I realized where Gary was headed with his comments. “You didn’t invite me up here just to drink a couple of beers, did you?”

Gary put his Lone Star on the kitchen counter, stepped forward, and began unbuttoning my shirt from the top. By the time he pulled it free of my jeans and unfastened the final button, my cock had swollen with 
desire and pressed against the inside of my Jockey shorts, yearning to be free. When Gary pushed my shirt off my shoulders, I set my bottle on the counter next to his and let my shirt slide down my arms to pool on the kitchen floor at my feet.

From “Unwanted Freedom” by P.L. Ripley

Chance woke when he was pulled from the bed and thrown to the floor. He opened his eyes to see the intruder drop to his knees, the left one planted firmly in the center of Chance's chest, and shove a thin slice of steel to his throat.

“Tommy, you're home early,” Chance said, not surprised to see his old lover.

Tommy grunted a hard reply. “No thanks to you, asshole.”

Chance stared up at him a moment, waiting for the knife to pierce his skin, to tear into his larynx or slice into the jugular vein. When it didn't happen Chance said, “You look good Tommy. You've been working out.”
Tommy had always been muscular from a lifetime of working construction. He was bigger now than the last time Chance had seen him, the day of the sentencing, five years ago. His chest was thicker, arms so fat with new muscle growth Tommy seemed barely able to keep them at his sides. They kept wanting to balloon out from him as though his hands were filled with helium.

“I didn't have much else to do, besides trying not to get raped or killed,” Tommy replied, pushing the blade a little harder against the thin flesh. A tiny bead of blood welled up under the knife. Chance could feel it trickle 
down into the hollow of his throat.

“I'm sorry you had to go to prison. I'm sorry I had to arrest you,” Chance said and ran his fingers through the thick hair on Tommy's forearm. He traced the tattoos all the way up to the shoulder. Tommy had most of them before he went away, but there were a few new ones. A skull on his hand, a line through Chance's 
ame on his bicep.

 “If you’re going to kill me, just do it.”

“You always were impatient,” Tommy said and rose to his feet. He stuck out his hand for Chance to take. Chance accepted it, lifted himself from the floor and stood beside Tommy. It felt good to touch him again. He missed him more than he had admitted to Bennie. He was still powerfully, terribly in love with Tommy.

Chance slept in the nude. It felt odd standing naked with Tommy fully dressed. He turned, pulled a pair of white briefs from the dresser and stepped into them. Tommy dropped the knife on the end table, it clattered next to the alarm clock, then he sat on the bed. He huffed out a long sigh.  

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Tuesday, June 16, 2015

TakeThis Man (3rd collection of excerpts from) short stories edited by Neil Plakcy



A collection of romantic erotica focused on male couples in committed relationships. Edited by Neil Plakcy, Take This Man takes a close look at how much sexier an encounter can be when the two men involved have been together for long enough to matter.


Take This Man
Cleis Press (May 14, 2015)


Excerpt 3 from Take This Man

From “Homecoming” by Justin Josh

The look on Scott’s face was thinly disguised disappointment mixed with disgust. Perfect, I thought. The apartment was a total mess. I was dirty, unshaven (which Scott hated), and best of all, I wore a fat suit hidden beneath a full-length cotton robe. I looked terrible.

Scott stood in the doorway, shocked. He looked gorgeous, decked out in his spotless uniform with its gleaming gold buttons. He knew how much I loved the way he looked in full uniform. With his puppy-dog brown eyes framed with those thick eyebrows, he was irresistible.

I could only imagine what he must be thinking, coming home from Afghanistan after six months only to find his boyfriend dressed in a bathrobe before dinner and looking like he had gained a hundred pounds.
Scott loved practical jokes and this was big. Cruel, perhaps, but he deserved this for all the surprises he had pulled on me, and for telling me before he left that I was getting chubby, and most of all for teasing me about all the beautiful muscular men he was working with while in the army.

“Welcome home,” I said, hugging him. I could barely keep from laughing as he recoiled. “Sorry about the mess.” I waved at the carefully staged destruction of our small apartment. Dirty dishes and old food covered the tables and countertops. Soiled clothes were strewn across the couch and floor.

To his credit, Scott gulped, smiled weakly and kissed me. He began to fondle my body, clearly surprised at how much weight I had gained. I pulled away, feigning embarrassment.

“Later,” I said. “You just got home.”

Scott looked almost like he was going to cry. Had I gone too far?

“I can’t believe you didn’t clean up,” he said. “You knew I was coming.”

“I’m sorry,” I said. “I cooked for us. I made your favorite: lasagna and garlic bread. You go upstairs, take a shower and dress into something more comfortable. Give me an hour and I’ll get everything ready.”

“Okay,” he said, leaning forward to kiss me again.

He kissed me and grabbed my butt. Again, he looked at me strangely.

“You gained weight,” he said, neutrally.

I put on my best guilty face. “I’m sorry. I’ll lose it, I promise.”

“I’ve missed you Todd,” he said.

“Me too.”

He nodded, turned and walked upstairs.

I nearly laughed out loud. Poor Scott! He had no idea that beneath my fat-suit was my new finely-sculpted muscular body. He was right. I had been getting chubby. So right after he left, I began working out on a daily basis. Not only did I lose my chubbiness, my muscles filled out quite nicely. I even had an actual six-pack. Scott was going to be so surprised.

From “Late Start” by Heidi Champa

“We’ve been together too long to still be in the honeymoon phase. We did all that seven years ago.”

He chuckled for a moment, before letting out a rattling cough, the remnants of a cold he’d been battling the week before. I was just about to ask him how he was feeling, but he didn’t give me the chance, his response dripping with sarcasm.

“God, you’re such a romantic, Cam. I don’t know how I’m supposed to stand it.”

“You know what I mean. It’s not my fault we couldn’t get married until a few months ago.”

“That doesn’t mean we can’t act like newlyweds. Because, you know, sweetie, we actually are.”

“I promise when I get back, we’ll do something.”

“We could do something right now.”

He looked at me expectantly and it took everything I had to get the next words out. “I’m sorry, I really have to go.”

Ben stared at me, his hand still moving around his cock, a little moan slipping past his lips before he spoke.

“Killjoy.”

I sipped my coffee and glanced at my watch. I really did have to leave. Technically, I should have already been on my way to the train station. It was so typical of Ben to try and distract me on a day like today. There he sat, on our giant sofa, bathed in the morning sun, every curtain in the loft wide open. Light bounced off the whitewashed brick walls, making everything glow. In the middle of it all was Ben, without a care in the world, his dark brown hair a mess, the glint in his eye making me reconsider my plans. For a moment, at least. The sky was the most gorgeous blue and I could hear the noise of the city getting louder as more and more people flooded onto the streets to start their day. Just like I was supposed to be doing. I repeated my words, but I said them more for me than for him.

“I really have to go, Ben.”

He sighed and ran his free hand up and down his thigh.

“So you said. Then go. Call me when you get to our nation’s capital.”

His words were flat, but I barely heard them. Mostly because Ben was making it hard for me to focus on anything but his hard dick. I looked at my watch, but I barely even saw the numbers. I knew I should just go. Then, Ben opened his mouth again.

“I’ll miss you, baby.”

His voice came out a bit husky, a trick he used when he wanted to get his way. The sound of it always drove me crazy, even after all these years. Which he knew, of course. He stretched an arm up into the air, his head coming to rest against the back of the couch. While I kept watching him, I found myself setting down my briefcase and loosening the knot on my tie. Ben smiled as I toed off my shoes on my way to the couch, careful to lay my suit jacket over the back of his favorite chair. I stood right in front of him and looked down at him, his hand still moving slowly up and down his dick.


Excerpt 3 from Take This Man

From “The Last Romantic Lover” by Logan Zachary

Logan, blow out your candle and make a wish,” Jake, my partner, said as he poured me another glass of champagne.  

The waiter had just set down a huge piece of Black Forest cake in front of me with a single candle burning on it.  He stepped back, knowing full well not to sing Happy Birthday to me. 

The Black Forest restaurant wasn’t very busy for a midweek supper and birthday celebration, and I was glad.  I looked into Jake’s eyes and asked, “Jake, will you marry me?”

Logan, you know until it’s legal …” Jake set the champagne bottle back in the table and picked up his bubbling flute.

I raised my glass to clink his.  “I don’t care what the government says.  I want to marry you, and a stupid piece of paper doesn’t make my feelings for you any different.  I love you, and I want to marry you.”  Our champagne glasses clinked.

“You want to drive down to Iowa and … ?”  He extended his fork to steal a bite of cake.

I nodded at him to help himself to the cake.  “You don’t understand.  I don’t care about some license or any silly documents.  I want a pastor to marry us.  In my heart, that’s all that matters, not a stupid document.”

“But if the paper doesn’t matter …”

“Never mind.  If you don’t want to marry me, that’s fine.”

“I didn’t say that.  I just don’t see why it matters so much to you.  You’re always such a rebel, you don’t seem like the one to follow any ancient heterosexual ritual.”

“I just want you to commit to me, and I want to commit to you.  Why is that so hard to understand?”

“It isn’t, but legally …”

“I don’t care what they say.  If I want to marry you, that’s all that matters to me.”

Jake took a big bite of cake.

“Fine, I won’t ask you again, but once it’s legal, you’ll have to ask.”

“Okay.”

“And I expect a ring, two month’s salary.”  I raised my champagne glass and saluted him before I drained it.  

“It’s such a nice place,” Mike said. He leaned across the bar and spoke in a low voice. “The smell is driving me crazy. I’m starving. How do you stand it?”

The chef did a tasting of the specials for the servers, and he had done a few of the classics for Mike to taste along with them, to get an idea of the whole menu. He said he had never eaten Ethiopian food, but he ate with enthusiasm and had spent much of the night suggesting dishes to customers before they even had a chance to decide.

“You eat before you show up for work,” Toby said, deadpan. Mike laughed, so he knew how to take a joke. He was going to get along well at Injera.

“The only thing I have in my fridge right now is beer,” Mike said. He turned away from Toby to glance around the room.

Mike was attentive and pleasant to be around. Toby couldn’t bring himself to complain about the constant questions. He was new. He had a lot to learn.

“What about you?” Mike asked, coming around the bar to grab the cloth and wipe it down for something to do. “Is your wife a good cook?”

It had been a long time since Toby had to come out to someone. He encountered people every day who didn’t know, but they didn’t always need to know. Mike would find out, and if he was still here when Azzo arrived to take Toby home, he would find out tonight.

“Husband,” Toby said, an easy correction.

Mike’s mouth fell open, almost comical, but his eyes were also wide, and Toby felt that old, familiar panic reaching up into his throat.

“That’s awesome,” Mike said. Toby didn’t think Mike could be any younger than he already looked. “I have so many questions, man. Where did you meet? How long have you guys been together? Is he hot?”

Toby laughed, but there wasn’t time for any of that, of course. As Mike was inching himself closer, Toby spotted a customer glancing around the room.

“Table  five,” he said. Mike jumped, and he was gone, completely professional once more. He would do well here, Toby decided. He would be a good kid to keep around.

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Author's question:  Do you obey any "rules for writing"?

Monday, June 8, 2015

Take This Man (2nd collection of excerpts from) short stories edited by Neil Plakcy



A collection of romantic erotica focused on male couples in committed relationships. Edited by Neil Plakcy, Take This Man takes a close look at how much sexier an encounter can be when the two men involved have been together for long enough to matter.


Take This Man
Cleis Press (May 14, 2015)


Excerpt 2 from Take This Man

From “Table for Three” by Jameson Dash

“It’s such a nice place,” Mike said. He leaned across the bar and spoke in a low voice. “The smell is driving me crazy. I’m starving. How do you stand it?”

The chef did a tasting of the specials for the servers, and he had done a few of the classics for Mike to taste along with them, to get an idea of the whole menu. He said he had never eaten Ethiopian food, but he ate with enthusiasm and had spent much of the night suggesting dishes to customers before they even had a chance to decide.

“You eat before you show up for work,” Toby said, deadpan. Mike laughed, so he knew how to take a joke. He was going to get along well at Injera.

“The only thing I have in my fridge right now is beer,” Mike said. He turned away from Toby to glance around the room.

Mike was attentive and pleasant to be around. Toby couldn’t bring himself to complain about the constant questions. He was new. He had a lot to learn.

“What about you?” Mike asked, coming around the bar to grab the cloth and wipe it down for something to do. “Is your wife a good cook?”

It had been a long time since Toby had to come out to someone. He encountered people every day who didn’t know, but they didn’t always need to know. Mike would find out, and if he was still here when Azzo arrived to take Toby home, he would find out tonight.

“Husband,” Toby said, an easy correction.

Mike’s mouth fell open, almost comical, but his eyes were also wide, and Toby felt that old, familiar panic reaching up into his throat.

“That’s awesome,” Mike said. Toby didn’t think Mike could be any younger than he already looked. “I have so many questions, man. Where did you meet? How long have you guys been together? Is he hot?”

Toby laughed, but there wasn’t time for any of that, of course. As Mike was inching himself closer, Toby spotted a customer glancing around the room.

“Table  five,” he said. Mike jumped, and he was gone, completely professional once more. He would do well here, Toby decided. He would be a good kid to keep around.

From “The Road Trip” by Kitten Boheme

“Oh my god!” Finn yelled, his face pressed against the passenger window, his breath fogging the glass.
I slammed on the brakes, the car behind us had to swerve around us, the driver laying on its horn, and gesturing rudely as he drove by.

“What?! What’s wrong?” I panicked.

“We should eat there!” He pointed excitedly to a roadside café.

“Seriously? That’s what you nearly got us killed for?” My heart had leapt up into my throat; I tried to swallow it back down.

Finn just looked back at me, unaware or uncaring of what just happened. He shrugged, “I’m hungry.”

“You are always hungry.” I rubbed his slightly less than a six-pack gut. He returned my mock affection with a punch to the arm, I laughed. “Fine, let’s stop.” I relented, flipping on my turn signal and pulling in to the café.  
I parked our Chevy station wagon, bought especially for this trip. “See the USA in your Chevrolet” was Finn’s mantra. Being the pushover I am, relented and traded in my Audi for this 1980’s monstrosity.

As I unbuckled my seatbelt I leaned over, “You owe me. Big.” I puckered my lips and waited.
Finn closed the gap between us and pressed his mouth to mine.

I melted into his kiss, the moistness of his lips, the heat of his breath, and the familiar feel of his tongue sliding against mine. Five years and he still can make me weak at the knees with just a kiss. We clung eagerly to each other, a hand slid up the nape of my neck, his fingers curling in my hair. I shuddered. I put my hand against his cheek, the fleshy pad of my thumb caressing his cheek bone. When the kiss broke Finn left a trail of soft kisses from the corner of my mouth to my ear. He breathed deep and heavy in my ear, a chill ran down my body, I could feel something beginning to stir in my pants. He whispered, “I want a bacon cheeseburger.”

I pushed him away from me, stifling a laugh. “Get away from me.”

“Come on, let’s go eat” Finn reached over and pulled the keys from the ignition. “I’m buying.”

“Damn right you are.” I reached for the door handle.

“Wait!” Finn held up a hand, motioning for me to stop. He jumped out of the car and hustled over to the driver’s side and opened the door for me. It was a silly thing he did, ever since our first date. He thought it was romantic and I humored him, although the tradition has grown on me.

“Thank you, babe.” I took his outstretched hand and lifted myself out of the seat with a groan. It felt good to finally stretch my legs. Finn linked his arm through mine and started pulling me towards the entrance and grudgingly I followed.

From “A Riviera Wedding” by Neil Plakcy

Aidan reached down to touch his half-hard dick, running his index finger up its length, remembering how Liam had looked that morning, like a Greek god come to life. He closed his eyes and imagined Liam there beside him, how he’d turn to his partner and take one nipple ring between his teeth, and twist.

Liam would shiver and reach for Aidan’s dick. Aidan stroked himself as he imagined that touch. He lay there in the shaft of sunlight gently fingering himself until his dick began to ooze precome.

“Getting started without me?”

Aidan opened his eyes to see Liam silhouetted in the doorway. His partner had an ability, cultivated by years as a US Navy SEAL, to move quietly when he wanted to . It was almost creepy.

“Well, at least I waited for you to get here.” He patted the bed beside him. Their little mixed-breed dog, Hayam, looked up from her place on the floor, then rested her head back down.

“I should take a shower.”

“No , you shouldn’t,” Aidan said. “I love the way you smell when you’ve been out at the beach.”

“Well, if you insist.” Liam pulled off his T-shirt, revealing his narrow waist, awesome six pack, and beefy pecs. The gold nipple rings glinted dully in the light.

Aidan never tired of watching his partner strip. In the five years they had been together, Liam had put on a bit of weight around his hips, and his biceps were not as iron-hard as they’d once been. But even if that amazing body were to fall apart, Aidan knew he would still love the man inside.

Liam kicked off his leather sandals and stepped out of his baggy gray shorts. He usually wore a jockstrap, 
because he liked the way the cotton fabric cupped and protected his dick and balls, but that morning he’d skipped the jock in favor of the tiny bathing suit. As he skinned the white nylon down over his crotch, his half-hard dick popped out. He pushed the fabric down over his massive thighs and then let the suit fall to the floor.

Grinning, he struck a bodybuilder pose beside the bed – because he knew how much it teased and excited Aidan. As he did, he bounced his dick up and down a couple of times to stiffen it.

“Come here, you,” Aidan said, clambering over the bed until his mouth was level with Liam’s dick. Liam planted his legs firmly on the floor and Aidan reached out to cup Liam’s balls. Then he moved in closer and took the mushroom head of Liam’s beefy dick in his mouth.


Liam was a shower, not a grower; his dick was pretty much the same girth and length hard or soft. And either way, Aidan loved to take it in his mouth. Nestling his nose against Liam’s pubic hair, he smelled the combination of sun, sand, salt water and tanning oil, along with their lavender soap and Liam’s own unique musk.

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