Can a restless soul find a home?
Three contemporary gay romance novellas. Three characters looking for a place to belong. Follow them as they put down roots in the small towns of the north. Oswald has never had a place to call home, but he can't live in his car forever. Zen is lost after the death of his father and spends his time on the road. Zach returns to his hometown after several years away and finds something he never believed he would.
Contains the stories:
Around Seven: Oswald Sattle has been sleeping in his Toyota Camry for the last nine months. Out of money and out of options, he’s on his way to Nortown for a job opportunity he can’t turn down. Joshua Roth has everything he needs, but he wants to make Oswald smile. He keeps suggesting things that will make Oswald stay, but Oswald doesn’t want to overstay his welcome. Maybe it’s time to move on again?
Banger Challenge: A month after losing his father, the only thing holding Zen Zeppelin Cave together is focusing on a charity junk car race to raise money for cancer research. He had planned on completing the race on his own, but a spur-of-the-moment decision changes that when he invites the adorable, blushing police officer whose driveway he’s blocking to tag along.
Once in May: To hide from his past, John Welsh has spent the last few years building walls around himself. He knows the best way to stay safe is to keep people at arm’s length. He should’ve known the peace he’s found wouldn’t last. One day everything is fine, the next Zachary Fane shows up wherever he goes. All Zachary wants is to be close to John, and if following him around is the only way, then so be it.
Publisher: JMS Books, LLC
Heat Level: 4
Romantic Content: 4
Ending: Click here to reveal
Character Identities: Gay
Protagonist 1 Age: 26-35
Protagonist 2 Age: 36-45
Tropes: Bad Breakup, Big Character / Little Character, Hurt / Comfort, Opposites Attract, Out for You, Slow Burning Love
Word Count: 100000
Setting: small town
- John hid in the pasta aisle. The fluorescent lamps above did nothing to make the huge man blocking the path to the checkout appear any smaller.
There was a reason John did his grocery shopping on Friday evenings, and that man was ruining it. The shop was supposed to be empty, and yet, there he was. A mountain of a man -- one of the sort who could pin John down with no effort at all.
He hadn’t seen John. He simply stood there, reading on his phone with a bag of potatoes in his hand and a bottle of ketchup under a heavily muscled arm, as if there wasn’t a problem in the world. And John guessed, for him, there wasn’t.
How would he get out? He couldn’t walk past him; it was too risky. And even if he made it past him without trouble, the man would come up behind John by the checkout counter ... or outside.
As quietly as he possibly could, he took a few steps away from the giant --READ MORE
Wrong move. Intense blue eyes shot up from the screen and landed on him.
John swallowed, tried to move, but was frozen to the spot.
“Sorry, am I in your way?” Of course, his voice had to be a deep rumble. A shiver travelled down John’s spine. He didn’t want to think about what it would sound like when he got angry, or how those fists would bruise and shatter his face if they ever tore into him.
The man stepped a little closer to the shelf, gave a nod as if he expected John to walk past him and went back to reading on his phone.
John couldn’t move. It was so easy for a man that size to grab him. Standing where he was wouldn’t keep him safe, but at least he hadn’t walked up to the man voluntarily.
A few seconds ticked by, and the man looked at him again. His gaze swept over him from head to toe. Probably thinking about what he’ll do to him once they were out of there. John’s ribcage tightened; he couldn’t move. He stood there, slowly suffocating while waiting for the man to make his move.
When nothing happened John almost screamed at him to get it over with. The waiting was worse than the pain, worse than the humiliation.
Then the man put away his phone and smiled. “Well, it was interesting meeting you.” He nodded, stroked his full beard, and ... left.
John stood, unmoving. His pulse was ringing in his ears, and his knees wanted to buckle.
He would be waiting outside.
Tears wanted to rise in his eyes but he pushed them away. Tears didn’t help; tears had never saved him; tears wouldn’t take away the pain.
Shit, it had been good. He’d been doing ... maybe not well, but better. For three years, he’d let himself believe Nortown was a place he could stay, a place where he would be left alone. But it was over now. He’d seen interest in the man’s eyes, had seen that he was about to say something as he’d stroked his beard.
Gregor hadn’t had a beard.
John slammed his eyes shut. He was not going to think about Gregor. Not now, not here. He heard the man talking to Chris by the till, but he couldn’t hear what they said, couldn’t make out the words over the buzz in his ears. He should run, put his shopping basket down and head for the emergency exit.
His feet wouldn’t move.
Time stood still, and yet minutes must have passed, because the voices had gone silent. John glanced at his watch: five to nine. The shop would be closing in five minutes. He forced himself to move to the checkout.