Sixteen-year-old Shade has spent years imprisoned in a dark cellar after being snatched as a young child. Events since his release have left him traumatized and desperate to die.
Dory is a lively and engaging seventeen-year-old with mental health issues that make him a slave to his dangerously uncontrollable emotions.
When Shade comes to Eastbrook secure children’s home because no place else wants him, the manager appoints Dory, for better or worse, to be his champion, an appointment Dory takes very seriously indeed.
As friendship turns into something else, something new and exciting, they struggle to find their feet as every step leads to more complications.
When a spiteful act separates them, it seems their love is doomed before it even has a chance. Then Dory falls ill and it’s up to Shade to take up the standard and be his champion, although it might already be too late.
Publisher: Extasy Books
Heat Level: 1
Romantic Content: 4
Ending: Click here to reveal
Character Identities: Gay
Protagonist 1 Age: Under 18
Protagonist 2 Age: Under 18
Tropes: Forbidden Love, Hurt / Comfort
Word Count: 78000
Setting: Children's Home
Languages Available: English
“Dorien....” Richard was looking at him in such a strange way it made his stomach feel tight. It was never good when they called him by his full name.
“What have I done?”
“Oh, nothing, nothing. Penny trusts you, Dory, and I’m not saying I don’t but... Shade’s got a lot of problems, serious ones. He’s very confused right now and it would be easy for there to be... misunderstandings.”
“It’s okay, Rich, I know the score. I promise I won’t make a move on him. I’m not that bad. I can control myself, you know.”
“I know that, Dory but.... Dammit, I’m not supposed to tell you this but I really think you should know. Shade tried to kill himself, and he still wants to.”
“Oh.” Dorien put a hand over his mouth and suddenly felt breathless. “Do you think he might... might... try?”READ MORE
“Yes, I do. We’re taking every precaution we possibly can, but we really do need someone to watch him all the time. There should always be a member of staff very close by, but no one can watch him every minute.”
“I can. I will. Penny said there was no responsibility, but I can do it. I can take responsibility, Rich. I didn’t think I could, but I can. I can’t go through all my life being taken care of and protected. I have to face reality sometime, and I guess this is it. I’ll be Shade’s champion, and I’ll take care of him, I promise. I won’t let him hurt himself, and I won’t let anyone else hurt him either.”
Rich looked stunned, and Dorien didn’t blame him. He was quite stunned himself. He hadn’t meant to say those things, they’d just come out.
“No one is expecting you to take responsibility, Dory. Just keep an eye on him, okay?”
“Off you go then. Max is waiting for you.”
Dorien raced through the house toward the boys’ bedrooms, his heart thumping. No matter what Rich said, he knew this was a huge responsibility. He had someone’s life in his hands. Jesus. Suddenly, he froze and panicked. Backing against the wall, he closed his eyes and gasped for breath. He couldn’t do this. There was no way he could do this. He was Dorien, the screw up, the freak, the nutjob. He couldn’t be trusted with his own life let alone someone else’s.
Waves of panic washed over him, and he desperately worked through the exercises his psychiatrist had given him for controlling his emotions in cases like this when they threatened to get completely out of control.COLLAPSE