Sunday, 29 March 2015

Blast from the Past: Final Admission

Final Admission


When Ethan Williams lands a job at Bingwell, Brock and Bacon, he realizes his coworkers aren’t exaggerating about James Trenchard. He really is a dick. But after Ethan is forced to work closely with James, he realizes there’s more to the lawyer than meets the eye. 

Vibrant Ethan is a desperate reason to live again as James endures silent guilt and abuse from his husband after an accident. He calls Ethan for help after a beating, and stolen moments soon become the norm, but they can’t hide forever. 

Ethan’s coworkers think he got his promotion because James is sweet on him, James is still being beaten despite his family’s concern, and the situation is swiftly becoming intolerable. Ethan and James need to find a way out of the cycle that’s hurting them both before their brand new love suffers as well. 

Excerpt:
One


“TRENCHARD IS a dick. Unless you’re a chick. Then he’s the only one with a dick. The rest of us might as well not exist.”

There was a rumble of agreement at Vince Line’s vehement rhyming declaration.

Not having a clue who Vince was talking about, the new boy at the advertising agency, Ethan Williams, looked around at the other account executives, all nodding and muttering into their coffee cups. Janice, the only woman among the execs, had a small secretive smile curving her lips, giving Ethan the impression she knew a lot more than she was giving away.

“Do you remember last year with Antonia from the third floor?” Vince’s fingers curled around the handle of his mug so tightly Ethan feared for the china.

“Heck yes,” Paul chimed in. “He was all over her the second he walked in the building.”

“And she went out to dinner with him.” Vince’s tone was bitter. “When I asked her to go out for a drink, she laughed at me. Then Trenchard raised his eyebrow and she was dropping her panties before you could say ‘slut.’”

Paul shrugged. “Yeah, but it’s James Trenchard, Vince. If he asked you out, you’d be dropping your panties even faster.”

Ethan waited for Vince to explode. He was, as far as Ethan was aware, a full-on heterosexual male, albeit an arrogant douche who had women running for the hills.

Instead, Vince bit his fingernail before saying, “Nah, probably not.”

“Who is this dude?” Ethan asked, totally confused.

Vince gave him a look. “He’s James Trenchard.”

As if that was supposed to explain everything. By the way they were all nodding, maybe it did.

By the way they were all saying “James Trenchard,” Ethan wasn’t sure what he was expecting: the messiah, perhaps? He certainly wasn’t expecting the second coming to be the lead attorney for Brock, Bingwell & Bacon, the marketing agency in downtown Seattle where Ethan had just been hired as an account executive.

They were congregating in the coffee room on the second floor before they went to the monthly meeting with the accounts managers and project managers. According to his coworkers this meeting was dreaded by everyone as the senior management team picked over each account. Today had the added hassle of James Trenchard, the lawyer on retainer, attending the meeting.

As the lawyer and Ethan’s boss greeted each other, Ethan stared at him, trying to see the attraction. Sure, he was good-looking, almost beautiful even, for a guy in his midthirties, with sleek light brown hair that curled over his collar and ice-blue eyes framed by long lashes. Those lips wouldn’t look out of place on a woman except, for some reason, on Trenchard they didn’t look effeminate. He was wearing a charcoal-gray pinstripe suit, with a plum-colored shirt and tie. Ethan noticed how well the suit pants showed off his ass. Trenchard wasn’t that bad—he seemed friendly—but not enough to warrant the status of messiah or dick.

Right up until Trenchard let the door bang behind him. Right into Ethan’s face.

“Told you so,” whispered Vince.

The guy was a dick, no doubt about it. Not a word of apology for almost rearranging Ethan’s face, and then he’d ignored them all as they used the elevator to the tenth floor. Ethan stared at the lawyer’s back with dislike, his lip curling as James Trenchard openly flirted with Ethan’s boss, Ms. Cauldwell. It was sickening the way his hand rested on her lower back. What was worse, Ethan’s “lay one finger on me and I’ll break your balls” boss was positively blooming under his sleazy charm. She had just giggled, giggled, at something he said.

But as the sleazebag showed Ethan’s boss into the large, airy conference room, he looked over his shoulder to the group following them, Ethan included.

“Your boys get prettier every year, Lulu,” Trenchard said conversationally. “Especially that large one.”

The large one, of course, had to be Ethan, standing clear of most of the men by at least half a foot. And he wasn’t fucking pretty. Especially not with a door imprinted on his face. Unimpressed at being reduced to the level of a thirteen-year-old girl, Ethan rolled his eyes at Vince and Paul.

He noticed Ms. Cauldwell hadn’t even bothered to look at her team. “You batting for the other side this year, James?”

“I bat for everyone,” Trenchard said and showed his perfect white teeth. Ethan imagined Trenchard sinking them into Ethan’s shoulder, even as he sank his cock into Ethan’s body.

Ms. Cauldwell snorted. “I bet you do. Well, my guys are pretty and clever, so don’t you forget it. Don’t make the mistake of thinking they are just for show.”

Trenchard’s eyes swept appreciatively over the small group of men and Janice, his gaze lingering on Ethan’s face. “Oh, I won’t underestimate them, Lulu. I definitely won’t.” And didn’t Ethan just know Trenchard was talking to him.

Ethan wanted to punch him in the face.

“I don’t think your large boy likes me very much,” James said to Ms. Cauldwell as they sat down.

“Mr. Williams has good instincts,” Ms. Cauldwell said. Ethan resisted the urge to preen a little.

“I’m sure he does,” the lawyer drawled.

The rest of them spread around the table. Ethan didn’t know how it had happened, but somehow he ended up on the opposite side of the table from the lawyer. His temper rising, Ethan avoided looking at his smug face; instead, his gaze fell on Trenchard’s hand as it wrapped around a fountain pen. Long fingers tipped with well-manicured nails—strong hands. Ethan wondered what they’d look like around Ethan’s dick. Cheeks heating, Ethan looked up hastily and caught Trenchard smirking at him. Ethan had the sinking feeling he knew exactly what Ethan had been thinking.

“Put him down, James.” Ms. Cauldwell sounded more resigned than angry as she tapped her fingers on the desk impatiently.

Trenchard sat back in his chair. “I haven’t touched him, Lulu.”

“He’s off-limits. Mr. Williams, if you could actually concentrate on our meeting?” Her tone made it clear it wasn’t a question.

His cheeks even hotter, Ethan muttered his apologies. He could feel the amused stares of all his colleagues except for the annoyance rolling off Vince. Ethan looked up to see Trenchard still gazing at him as if he was a succulent piece of hog roast.

Ethan was grateful when the monthly meeting actually started and the attention was diverted away from him. As the meeting progressed, he was unwillingly impressed. Trenchard knew his business. Nothing got past him as he went through each account and their current advertising campaigns. Everyone was expected to contribute, even junior staff as part of their training, but thankfully Ethan managed to acquit himself adequately when it came to his turn, answering the few questions Trenchard aimed in his direction. Some of his colleagues didn’t fare so well. Ethan winced as Vince and his project manager were shredded for a copyright mistake that had cost the agency thousands of dollars in a lawsuit.

By the time the end of the meeting arrived, he was more relaxed and able to handle himself. That complacent feeling lasted until a warm foot traveled up his calf. From the angle of the foot, it could only be Trenchard. Ethan was pinned like a butterfly on a board as the silk-clad foot moved until it was resting between his legs.

Trenchard was in the middle of a detailed discussion on why they were going to get screwed by Disney if they used “The Circle of Life” in their advertising copy, and his foot was in a detailed exploration of Ethan’s groin. Unable to move, unable to say anything, Ethan bit his lip as his traitorous cock sat up and begged for attention. He couldn’t even shove the foot off without drawing attention to himself. There was absolutely nothing he could do as slowly, inexorably, he was drawn closer to climax. Just as his balls drew up tight, screaming for their release, the foot was gone.

In shock at his denied orgasm, Ethan watched in horror as the lawyer pushed his chair back and stood up.

“I think we’re done for the day, Lulu. Good work, everyone.” Trenchard gave a professional smile as he looked around the room, not resting on Ethan any longer than the others.

Ms. Cauldwell nodded. “There is lunch in the room adjacent to this one, gentlemen. I’m sure the sandwiches aren’t too stale.”

Everyone started pushing their chairs back except Ethan. He clutched his pen so tight it was in danger of snapping. He was so close to coming, a puff of wind could set him off.

“Mr. Williams, are you coming?” Ms. Cauldwell asked.

Very likely, he thought desperately as he gave her a wild-eyed “Yes, ma’am.”

“I’ll leave you to collect the files and then you can join us for lunch,” she suggested as she pushed her chair back, not giving a hint that she knew of his predicament.

“Yes, ma’am,” he repeated, not moving a muscle. Trenchard, the bastard, hadn’t even looked at him since he got up.

Paul gave him a puzzled look but obediently handed over his file, the others following suit.

Angry as fuck, Ethan was left alone in the conference room. He stared at the pile of files in front of him while he willed his erection to subside. He wanted to get his cock out and jack off. Get it over and done with. Only he couldn’t do that, so he had to wait until his boner had gone down enough for him to walk without a limp. He’d be lucky if there was any food left by the time he got there. Ethan ground his teeth together.

By the time he was able to show himself in public and walk into the boardroom, his prediction was accurate. The food platters were empty and all that was left was a few pieces of limp watercress. Ethan groaned inwardly. It would be late evening before he had a chance to eat again.

“Here.”

Someone thrust a plate into his hand. Not expecting it, Ethan dropped the files. The plate of sandwiches miraculously stayed intact. The room was silent for a moment, then everyone burst out laughing.

“Dear me, Lulu, you really picked a good one this time.” Ethan could hear Trenchard’s mocking tone over the laughter.

Ethan sank to his knees to pick up the files, putting a sandwich in his mouth just in case they got taken away. He was immediately joined by Paul, reaching out for one that slipped farther away.

“I’m so sorry, Ethan.”

“Huh?”

“I saved you some food. I should have waited until you’d put the files down.”

“So you should, Mr. Vicini. It seems Mr. Williams can’t manage two things at once. Multi-tasking is obviously not one of his skills.”

Ethan looked up to see Trenchard standing over him, that mocking smile still on his handsome face. Glaring at the lawyer, he got to his feet, files in hand.

Throwing caution to the wind, Ethan leaned forward and lowered his voice. “I am perfectly capable of managing two things at once, Mr. Trenchard, just as you seem to be. It’s such a shame that you’ll never find out.” He took satisfaction in the fleeting look of disappointment that crossed the lawyer’s face.

His boss was watching them from the sidelines, a peculiarly satisfied expression on her face.

“I think I’ll take the files back to the office, Ms. Cauldwell,” he informed her, not really caring if this was against protocol.

She nodded, that odd look still on her face. “Good idea, Mr. Williams.”

He took another sandwich from the plate Paul was holding—he was hungry after all—and left the room, a shred of his dignity still intact.

As he left he heard his boss say quietly, “One for my team this year, I think.”

James gave a short laugh. “Not on your life, Lulu. This is just the opening salvo. Williams is just a kid. He could never stand to play with the big boys.” And didn’t Ethan just hear the emphasis.

Ethan was a short hop from dropping the files and walking back in to plant his fist in James’s face.

“Honestly, Lulu, you’re going to have to up your game if you think you’re going to beat me.”

“James, one day you might just get what’s coming to you.”

“Never gonna happen.”

Humiliated and furious, Ethan stabbed the elevator button. The guy was a lawsuit waiting to happen. Who the fuck did he think he was? If Ethan hadn’t needed his job so much, he might have called his bluff. Except he wouldn’t have, because God, that foot had felt good on his cock.

Yes, Mr. Trenchard, you are a total dick.

Saturday, 28 March 2015

Morning Report at Bike Book Reviews


The very fabulous Sharita Lira talks about my Morning Report series over at Bike Book Reviews.
"It was a tough choice to decide between the series of books I love to read, but my heart wouldn’t let me pick over Sue Brown’s Morning Report. Sue’s Morning Report was one of the first m/m romance novels I absolutely devoured. I say that because when she released this, I’d just started doing m/m myself. After reading so many short stories, slash fiction, and anthologies, I picked her novel up to get a true sense of the m/m genre. Not only did I get that, but I was treated to two characters who will always be my favorite other than my own; Luke and Simon."


A decade on from their first kiss, Luke Murray is more in love with Simon every day. Running the Lost Cow ranch for Luke’s parents, they keep their heads down and get along with the locals, even if Luke is known for being a hothead. Then one day they discover the local store owners refuse to serve them.

They’re bewildered until Luke’s mom tells them the new pastor has targeted the couple in his sermons. Suddenly Luke and Simon find themselves alienated from people they called friends, and their ranch comes under a series of attacks. As the town’s hatred and homophobia turns on them, Luke and Simon will face a critical choice: give in to the town’s demands and disappear, or stand and fight for themselves and their love.

New Release: To Stand Close by Faith Ashlin

My lovely friend, Faith Ashlin has a new book out. To Stand Close published by Totally Bound.
To stand close
Can love grow and survive for two men on opposite sides of the deepest of chasms—slavery?
In this world, one country has cut itself off and is closed and mysterious to everyone else. What’s the secret it’s hiding? Magic? Monsters? No, just the cruel reality of slavery. But inside its borders life goes on as normal, and it competes with the rest of the world at sport just like everyone else, just to prove that it’s the best.
Nicky accepts that and is happy in his own small, simple life as a gymnastics coach. He accepts it because he’s never known anything else, but he stays as far away from the brutality of slavery as he can, until he’s given a present he doesn’t want and isn’t allowed to refuse.
As for love? Well, he loves his sport. Isn’t that enough?
Excerpt
With her face creased in concentration, the young gymnast landed well from the mid-air somersaults, her feet making solid contact with the mat. But rather than creating an elaborate show of her stability, she immediately arched backward, stretching her spine into a perfect curve. Her arm came up above her head, elbow soft, hand following the movement, as she looked backward along the line, making sure every finger was in the right place, delicate and gentle.
The extra gesture followed perfectly with the music, a quiet, haunting piece of heartbreaking intensity with only a single clear voice laid over the melody. She followed the sound with her hand, her arm, her whole body, faced creased with the feeling of the music, till the very last note.
Then she was still. Perfectly, completely still, caught in the moment and the magic. For a long second she kept the position, fixed in time, then the spell was broken as she turned toward her coach, a sixteen-year-old girl once more. “Nicky?” she asked, her attention fixed on his face. “Was it good enough?”
Nicky took a slow breath as he pulled himself up from where he sat, just outside the floor area. “How did it feel to you?”
“It felt…” Adeline caught her lip between her teeth, uncertainty seeming to creep over her like a plague as she dipped her head, suddenly aware of everyone else in the gym.
“No.” He stopped her. “Doesn’t matter how anyone else reacts. How did it feel to you?”
Her focus was back on him again, as though he were the only important thing in the world. The only thing. “Like I’d become part of the music. L—like I could feel it in my tummy, like I was in it. It felt… I felt…” She stopped, shaking her head.
“Beautiful,” he said quietly. “You looked beautiful. You were beautiful. Beautiful—that’s the word you want. You and the music were beautiful.”
She stared at him, her heart and soul in her eyes, all being offered to him, then she broke into a huge grin. “And the triple twist somersault?”
“Over cooked and off line.” He shrugged, grinning back. “But we can sort that out later. It doesn’t matter—you caught the essence, the soul of it. Who cares about a bit of a wobble when you’re that graceful?”
“The judges will, you idiot.” She laughed, running toward him. “That would be at least a point two deduction.”
“And another point two off your score for not being straight.” He slung an arm over her shoulder, leading her across the hall. “But I’d give you an extra couple of marks for taking my breath away.”
“Idiot,” she repeated, smiling and leaning into him for a moment. Her hand went up toward his face, hovering for a moment near the birthmark covering his cheek on one side. She gave it the briefest of touches with one fingertip, then she ran away as he pushed her gently.
“Okay, everyone, warm down then home. I, for one, need some sleep.”
There was a chorus of cheeky replies and a few harmless insults before the group of girls got together on the floor area to go through their ritual warm down. Nicky started clearing up—a water bottle here, a track suit top there, putting mats back in their proper place—as he listened to them.
They were still laughing and giggling together—amazing after a three-hour, strenuous work out. Comments about their haircuts mixed in with gossip from favorite TV shows and the latest pop star as they took care of muscles that had been worked hard. Nicky stopped and watched them, a collection of hand guards held against his chest. They were damned good girls. Not just at gymnastics—that went without saying. But a collection of diverse personalities that had one thing in common—they were all good people. Some were loud and confident, others softly spoken or wary, but they would all grow up to be decent adults.
He had chosen the group well. Not just great gymnasts—not even always the best he had seen, there had been other, better, gymnasts he had turned down—but great gymnasts with better characters who he could work with. Who he could help become the best in the world. He smiled at them fondly.
“What are you staring at, old man?” Martha stood, hands on hips, and pulled a face at him, sticking out her tongue.
“A stick insect with red hair?”
“A stick insect?” She narrowed her eyes. “If I’m such a stick insect, why did you have that soppy expression your face? You looked a sausage short of a barbeque.”
He barked out a laugh at the absurdity of her comparison and knew that the soppy expression was back again. “Because I’m proud of you,” he said seriously. “I’m proud of all of you.”
Martha stopped for a moment, her face showing her pride in the compliment, then she was off again, running toward the showers. “I told you he’s gone soft in the head,” she shouted over her shoulder to the others. “It’s because he doesn’t spend enough time having fun.”
“If I have gone soft, it’s because I spend too much time with you guys.” He threw a hand guard half-heartedly after her, knowing he’d have to pick it up himself, and shook his head. He was proud of them, each and every one. “And why are you all in such a rush to get out of here?”
“Because”—Martha popped her head back round the changing room door—“as we did so well in the last competition, our mums have given us money to go late night shopping. We’re buying something other than leotards and track suits for once, something glamorous. High heels and skirts with spangles on them.” She grinned again, flashing her teeth. “Unlike you, we know how to have fun.”
“So, go, have fun.” He waved them away. “Just don’t be late for training in the morning.” He picked up the hand guard and looked round the gym. All ready for the next day. He collected his things and reached for the light switch, muttering to himself, “I do know how to have fun, if I remember right.”
Outside in the corridor he held the main door open for the last of his girls as they headed off, still talking a mile a minute. But before he could lock up, one of the girls’ mothers stopped him, her foot in the door, her hand pressed against his chest.
Mrs. Bygroves. She’d always made him want to take a step away. Too pushy, too knowing, too self-assured. “Nicky.” She purred his name. “We wanted to have a quick word with you.”
“We?”
“Myself and the other mothers.” She indicated the group of women behind her, already starting to move toward the door. “We won’t keep you long. We just wanted to give you something to say a proper thank you for all you’ve done for our girls, especially after the amazing results at the last competition.”
“You don’t have to give me anything.” He hesitated, already not liking the feel of this. “I do it for the pleasure of working with them, and they’ve already said thank you.”
“Nonsense.” She pushed past him, confidently making her way to the office. “I know the authorities don’t recognize your work as they should and I’ll wager they never say thank you.”
“It doesn’t matter.” He trailed after the women. What else could he do?
“But you’re the best women’s gymnastics coach in the country. You should be working with the elite national squad, not stuck out here in the middle of nowhere.”
“But I’m building a better squad than the national elite one.” He allowed himself a satisfied smile. Yeah, his girls were damned good.

Friday, 27 March 2015

Because I'm Shallow: Robert Downey Jr


Promotion, Podcasts and Poppy

Confession time for the week.

I'm a coward.

Yes, I am. 

I'm a Coward, Too - Invertedby crmsndragonwngs


I'd love to be one of these people who travels the world on her own like my friend Katrina, goes potholing and abseiling like my ex. Sadly even rollercoasters make me go green at the thought.

But this week I did two things that I was afraid to do.

On Monday I did a podcast with my friend, John Goode.

http://deanwinchesterjournal.tumblr.com/post/114402785597/suebrownepisode1-wav


And on Wednesday I took part in a googlechat with the very lovely Poppy Dennison, Kim Fielding and Tara Lain.


I had a weekend of panicking and could I think of anything to get out of it? But I didn't. I was a brave Sue and I had a lot of fun.

Thank you, John and Poppy. I've got over another fear now.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Anthony & Leo is a bestseller

Woohoo!! Anthony & Leo managed a flying start on Amazon.co.uk, getting to number 1 in Gay and Lesbian erotica on its first day out. Thanks to the lovely Sid Love for spotting that.





Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Out Today: Anthony & Leo


“Leo, my idea of a good night is being lashed to a cross with a plug up my arse and being whipped and fucked until I come.”


OUT TODAY



A Novella in Frankie's Series

Watching Marchant train his new sub leaves Tony unhappy at not having found a Dom of his own. Running Marchant’s BDSM club, Tony sees who the Doms prefer and it isn’t him—too big, too old, and too hairy. When his friend Jordan suggests he look outside the club, Tony’s mind turns to Leo, a man he met in a traffic jam. Tony manages to arrange a date and happily learns Leo is funny, very toppy, and not averse to Tony's lifestyle. As a bonus, Leo sells sex toys.

When tragedy strikes the club, Tony fears he can’t help the mourning club members, but Leo offers his unwavering support. After such a tough start, Tony believes Leo is the Dom he’s been looking for... until he catches him kissing another man.