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by LE Franks

Tasty - LE Franks
Editions:Kindle - First
Pages: 121
Kindle - Second Edition: $ 3.99

Don’t you just hate it when you accidentally out your celebrity boyfriend to a NY Times gossip columnist? So does culinary genius, Christian De Guisse.

After one teensy mistake, instead of searing the perfect steak or seasoning a mouth-watering sauce, Christian is on a plane out of town. The lure of redemption has Chris fleeing to the Pacific Northwest with the promise of a possible career-saving job. But if the decrepit Portland restaurant he’s been hired to redeem fails, then so will he. Being ridiculed as the washed-up boy toy of a celebrity chef would be a fate worse than death.

Andy doesn’t have good taste. In fact, he doesn’t taste anything at all. While making an arrest, Andy manages to collar the most mouthwatering of men. He’s irresistibly drawn to the appetizing chef. But Christian finds Andy’s liberal use of ketchup hard to swallow, and until Andy can clear him of any lingering suspicion, Christian will remain forbidden fruit.

Christian feels as if he’s jumped from the frying pan into the fire. His tasty morsel of a cop isn’t falling for his cooking charms, and the well-below 5-star establishment he’s trying to save is more mess than Michelin. Will the sour taste of Andy’s rejection be what finally destroys Christian’s hope for a new life?

Please note: This edition features a new cover with no additional content, so no need to purchase if you’ve already read Christian and Andy’s story! If this is your first time meeting them you’ll find Tasty AF is a slow burn, opposites attract romance, that features a disgraced gourmet chef and the impatient cop who hungers for him. Previous edition Can This Be Real was published by another publisher in 2014.

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Chef Christian De Guisse entered the kitchen of The Happy Monkey, the latest monument to Jordan Slayer's massive ego. Mondays were a mixed bag at the restaurant, a choreography of chaos between nonstop ringing phones, weekly food and spirit deliveries, and the shuffling of the dead-eyed legions of wait and prep staff now reanimated from round-the-clock weekends of work, recreation, and recovery.

Not that Christian, as executive chef, was immune from the cycle. He could feel the twinges in his ass from the long pounding Jordan had given him earlier this morning before disappearing into his role as head of the Jordan Slayer corporate empire. After a long weekend working, Christian had found himself in Jordan's Midtown apartment being thoroughly fucked until four-thirty a.m. He vaguely remembered Jordan leaving sometime around eight. The man's capacity to function without sleep at the age of forty-two remained impressive.


Jordan had made a name for himself as a FoodVision television superstar with three rotating cooking shows, before branching out with his own chain of restaurants in resort locations like Las Vegas and Aspen. The Happy Monkey was Jordan's latest venture and his first in Manhattan. It was fine dining with ambitions of breaking into the ranks of Manhattan's elite restaurants. So far between the good reviews for Christian's food and the star power of Jordan's name, The Happy Monkey was a solid hit.

As Christian moved deeper into the kitchen to get to his office, one of the prep cooks finally noticed him.

"Uh-oh." Enrique hesitated, halting work on the mise en place, his chef's knife hovering over a pile of glistening yellow carrots diced into tiny cubes. Christian's brain automatically ran down the possibilities and decided those jewels were destined for the Moroccan Lamb Tagine special. Jordan had described it in loving detail as he slowly screwed Christian into the 1200 thread count sheets gracing the custom bed in Jordan's loft.

Food and menu planning were always a big kink for the TV chef.

"What?" Christian paused, dropping his knife case on the counter and snagging one of the perfect yellow cubes. It was sweet and crunchy, with a hint of a floral top note. The tagine would sing tonight.

Enrique flushed but otherwise ignored him, dropping his head back down to concentrate on sending his knife flying through the root vegetables spread across his board. The prep cook wasn't usually so shy about eye contact but it was a beautiful day and Christian was still basking in the afterglow of his early morning romp. Frankly, he couldn't be bothered right now.

He made his way over to his tiny office at the back of the kitchen. The desk, scrupulously cleared on Saturday night, was already piled with mail, notes, and a case of wine samples left by a new distributor. He pulled out a bottle of a disappointing generic red blend.

It would probably work for the staff meal, but maybe not. Everyone on his team had excellent palates and they'd turn their noses up at the mediocre stuff if there were any chance Christian would cave and pull out something a little more drinkable. But you never knew until you tried. Sometimes they found the sweet among the sour grapes. He dropped the bottle back in the case and set the box on the floor.

Back to sorting through the mess, Christian came across the entertainment section from Sunday's newspaper. Assuming it was a review Jordan wanted him to read, he tucked it under his arm and headed out to the bar to make a quad shot of espresso before settling down for his day. He had to check the invoices and rework one of the specials—the sous chef had left him a note telling him that their fishmonger had rejected the blue crabs, but he'd try for them in another week.

He'd just settled down at the bar to sip his coffee when he opened the paper.

So. Not. A. Review.

The sound of smashing porcelain rang out as Christian swept the espresso off the bar with his fist.

* * *

"You fucking bastard!" Christian slammed through the door to Jordan's office without knocking. The executive suite was built on a mezzanine overlooking the dining room and faced with an entire wall of glass that revealed a private chef's table at one end and Jordan's desk at the other. From the dining room floor the executive suite always reminded Christian of a giant aquarium; Jordan's relentless pacing mimicking the school of piranha circling their tank at the NY Aquarium.

"Chris, what the hell? I'm in a meeting with the network, this is completely inappropriate!" Christian barely spared a glance at the room full of suits before blasting back.

"You want to know what's fucking inappropriate? It's cheating on me with some twat while I run your goddamned restaurant making you look good to all these pretentious assholes!" Christian swept a hand out, gesturing to those seated behind him with the paper still clutched in his hand.

Jordan lost all color in his face as Christian slapped the newspaper down in front of him. The pages were folded back to reveal a cozy photograph of Jordan, arms wrapped around a statuesque blonde in a tiny silver micro dress as they left a trendy SoHo eatery.

Page Six had spent several column inches speculating that perhaps Jordan had met the future Mrs. Happy Monkey, given the number of times he'd been seen escorting her around town over the last six months.

"Christian, you're overreacting—"

"Fuck you, Jordan. If anything, I'm under-reacting here. How long have you been sneaking around?"

Jordan froze and then seemed to pull himself together after a quick glance at the startled faces around them. For the first time, Christian focused on the other occupants in the room. Among the seven suits seated, Christian recognized Mickey Nichols, Executive Producer for Jordan's shows, along with Melissa Halprin, entertainment reporter for The Times. While the others were studiously trying to avoid eye contact, Melissa had the glazed look of someone witnessing a car wreck as she clutched her recorder in one hand.

"Back off, Chris!" Jordan snapped, every inch of him channeling his 'Jordan Slayer, TV star' persona. "I don't know what the hell you think you're doing but this is none of your business, and for the record I'm not gay."

"Not gay?  I find that incredibly unlikely since you had your tongue shoved up my asshole not three hours ago. In my experience, that's usually a line a straight man won't cross!" Christian would have been more satisfied by the horror on Jordan's face if the view weren't ruined by a sucker punch to his jaw.

The blow knocked him backwards into the glass wall, panels shuddering and pinging. Mickey jumped up to grab Jordan, pulling the cheating bastard out of harm's way, while the sting of his mouth dissolved the last bit of Christian's self-control.

"You can deny it all you want but there's also the fact you've been inserting your cock into every orifice of sufficient size on my body since I was seventeen—you're just one blowjob away from winning the award for World's Most Prolific Cocksucker, Jordan!"

The mention of underage sex and blowjobs seemed to light a fire under Mickey. He shoved Jordan into a chair and started hustling everyone else out of the room. Melissa was no longer being shy about her interest and was furiously jotting notes into a small notebook—lingering as long as she could—Mickey finally shut the door in her face and turned the panels to opaque before making his own escape.

"Seventeen?" Jordan spluttered, shock ripping away his facade. "I thought you had to be eighteen to apply to the CIA?"

Jordan was probably thinking back to all the times he'd dragged Christian into an empty supply closet or the guest quarters at the venerable cooking institution during that long weekend eight years ago.

"Yeah, Jordan. You were so hot to get in my whites that you never slowed down long enough to ask, not that it took very long as I recall. You know, I never could tell if it was my tight ass you loved more or my perfect sauces. I guess it's a moot point now"

Christian couldn't stop the memories from surfacing, overwhelming his pain. As an undergraduate attending the Culinary Institute of America, Christian had been assigned to help Jordan prep for a cooking demonstration; to say they'd hit it off would've been an understatement. In fact, upon graduation Jordan came calling, luring Christian into hitching his professional career to Jordan's star. Bile rose in Christian's throat at the choices he'd made.

"Christian?" Jordan broke into Christian's reverie.

Staring at him, Christian barely recognized the man he'd thought he'd spend the rest of his life with. For Christian, their early professional partnership had quickly become personal—in Jordan he'd found not only a mentor but also a partner and friend.

They'd done everything together. And even though Christian spent all his nights at the loft with Jordan, except for the late weekend shifts, Jordan had always resisted Christian's overtures to make it official by moving in together. Now he knew the reason why. Just the thought of it made a red tide of rage rise once more.

"I can't believe I never recognized what a low-life, no-talent, has-been, cheating scum you really are." Christian shook with emotion, the words snarled, hands clenched at his sides and jaw throbbing.

Jordan appeared tired and defeated sitting with his head in his hands, but the look he gave Christian as he rolled his head to the side was mostly pissed.

"You're fired, Chris. Get the fuck out of my restaurant."


Please note: This edition features a new cover with no additional content, so no need to purchase if you’ve already read Christian and Andy’s story! If this is your first time meeting them you’ll find Tasty AF is a slow burn, opposites attract romance, that features a disgraced gourmet chef and the impatient cop who hungers for him. Previous edition Can This Be Real was published by another publisher in 2014.

About the Author

LE Franks is an author of Gay Romance fiction, living in the SF Bay Area surrounded by inspiration; and after years of ignoring the voices in her head, she’s now giving them free reign in the form of her characters.

Her stories are a unique mix of humor and drama with enough suspense to produce fast-paced stories filled with emotion and passion, and featuring characters that are quirky and complicated.

For the latest, check out her website for links to current works, news, and social media.