Saturday, May 31, 2014

Gary's Choice by A.C. Katt


Danny Donovan is a house sub at Indiscreet. Gary Sayer is a former Major League Pitcher who comes to Indiscreet to play three time a week with Danny. Danny loves Gary and Gary wants a contract but his contract with his Manager forbids him from coming out. 
Danny suffered and was homeless for two months after he came out. Being gay himself, his brother came home from Afghanistan to help him and left him out and proud. Can Danny go back in the closet for Gary, will Caden let him?  

Mary Lynn Hansel
Writing as AC Katt

Author of:
From MLR Press: Shattered Glass, A Matter of Trust, Jack's Back, Cisco's Boy and Bull's Whip
From JMS Books: The Sarran Plague  

Misdeeds by Kathryn Kelly

Book Title: Misdeeds
Series: Death Dwellers MC (Book 2.5)
Author: Kathryn Kelly
Publication Date: June 5, 2014


John “Johnnie” Donovan is determined to make his relationship work with Kendall Miller, the attorney he met during his cousin’s birthday party. Before he can move on with his future, however, he still has loose ends to tie up from the past in the person of a rival MC’s president who is also Kendall’s ex-boyfriend. As Johnnie tries to balance his club life and personal life, another tragedy forces him to make a choice between the two. Will Johnnie be able to live with the choices he makes?
Kendall Miller is trying to pick up the pieces of her life in the wake of her ex-boyfriend’s assault. She’s ready to move on with her life and the man of her dreams, the sexy VP of the Death Dwellers MC. She demands his complete attention and isn’t willing to share her man with all the baggage of the MC. She doesn’t want to be an afterthought to him nor does she want to live her life in the midst of the clubhouse, especially with the competition taking place between Kendall and the club president’s wife. Then, catastrophe strikes and Kendall’s life is once again altered. Can she and Johnnie have a future together or has their love been doomed from the beginning?


Instead of Megan or any other woman, Johnnie stepped in and leaned against the door. He’d been running his fingers through his hair a lot, so the blond strands lay all over his head. The sadness in his eyes made her heart twist and she stepped closer to him before gliding her fingers along his jawline. The stubble that had grown since he’d shaved this morning scraped against her fingertips. She wrapped her arms around his waist and buried her nose against his neck, inhaling his scent. Smoke. Alcohol. The faintest hint of aftershave. Musk. And him. Johnnie.

She planted kisses against his throat and up to his mouth. He groaned and pulled her closer, taking control of the kiss and dipping his tongue into her mouth. Heat pooled low in her belly, her pussy slickening in need.

“I’m so glad you’re here with me, gorgeous,” he whispered, thumbing her nipples and thrusting his erection against her.

Kendall melted at his words and smiled, pulling back to stare into his eyes, burning with a silver intensity that seemed to reach into her soul. But she wouldn’t tell him again that she loved him right now. He was dealing with too much. Besides, she wanted to know how deep his feelings went for her. She couldn’t face his rejection.
“Come out with me?” he asked quietly. “I’m about to tell a hilarious story about K-P. Well, it’s more about us but K-P walked in at the end and—“ He rubbed the back of his neck and he shrugged before forcing a smile onto his lips. “I’d like you to be out there.”

Unable to deny him as much as she wanted to ask they return to their room, Kendall nodded.

His grin wasn’t as bleak. Grabbing her hand, he moved away from the door, opened it, and then guided her out. He went to the center of the floor and whistled to call attention to himself.

“You’d never know just by looking at our ugly mugs how two little guys have woven their way into our hearts,” he began when the room fell silent. “I’m going to be a father, too, thanks to my old lady.” He nodded to Kendall and she blinked, heat rising to her cheeks, not expecting Johnnie to make such an announcement.

Claps and catcalls reached Kendall, Johnnie’s loudest of all. She didn’t know how to feel about having so much attention focused on her and wished Johnnie would’ve discussed his intentions with her, so she could’ve been better prepared.

Sliding into the seat she’d had earlier, she ignored the stares directed at her, balling her hands into fists to keep from screaming at everyone to focus elsewhere. Like on Johnnie, who was finally launching into the story he’d mentioned to her in the bathroom.

Losing herself in the cadence of his voice, Kendall blocked out everyone else and focused on the anecdote.




Kathryn Kelly is living her dream and writing books. Everyone who follows Kat on Facebook is well aware of her relationship with her mother. For those of you who are unaware, the following will offer you a taste. To live in peace, Kat acknowledges she is a mom, but prefers to keep her personal life private. In spite of her momma. Kat has always been an avid reader and still devours books in her spare time. She also enjoys football, socializing, music, eating, and jokes. In her head, she's the ultimate biker babe. In reality, she's an ordinary girl-next-door and a native New Orleanian.

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Her Hot Montana Cowboys by Ginger Mane


Casey Rollins is living in hell… She flees from her physically and mentally abusive boyfriend, Patrick, and sets out to start a new life. She hopes to find peace and clarity, but, she ends up being frustrated and confused. She doesn't know what it feels like to actually be loved. Can she even trust the two cowboys who show up in her life, or will they end up just like her ex?
Ranch owners, Chase and Jacob McQuarters are brothers in search of the one woman that they are meant to share. When they set their sights on Casey, they know the wait is over, and they have a hard time holding themselves back. They can see that she has been hurt and they will have to prove themselves to her. Little do they realize, this wont be easy. They will put their lives on the line more than once and subject their ranch to being destroyed to save her…
But will she be worth the fight?

It was Casey’s fourth day driving and she knew they were almost there. They had stopped each night to sleep but they were up bright and early the next morning. She and Ben were walking back to the car from stretching their legs when this big black truck pulled over to where her vehicle was.
These two guys dressed in jeans, black T-shirts, and cowboy hats got out of their truck and headed toward her. She quickly started moving toward her vehicle, scared because she didn’t know who they were and it was just her and Ben. She was praying that it was not someone that Patrick sent after her. They both had that familiar look to them, but of course she didn’t know them. One of them said to her, “Are you having car trouble, sweetheart?”
They must have noticed they scared her because they both stopped in their tracks and apologized and asked her if she was all right. Casey answered, “Yes we are OK, we were just stretching our legs. We have been driving for the past 4 days.” Casey just stood there for a minute daydreaming about these two luscious cowboys in front of her, who definitely filled out their clothing, and wondered what it would feel like for them to be touching and kissing her all over and what it would be like to touch their hard incredible bodies. Casey gasped. Oh my God, she said to herself, I didn’t know they made cowboys that looked like this. She snapped back to reality quickly when they both asked where she was headed and she told them Lusting, Montana. She walked closer to them because she didn’t feel they were going to hurt her but she still kept her distance. There was something about them that made her feel safe and unafraid, like she knew them or something. It was a weird feeling. The feeling was overwhelming her because she has never felt that way before with a man. She was still always leery in the back of her mind though, because she saw firsthand how a person can change.
* * * *
Chase stepped forward, “I’m Chase McQuarters and this here is my brother Jacob. We live here in Lusting ,Montana. What brings you here, sweetheart?”
Casey smiled a bit and said softly, “A new start for me and my dog.”
Jacob stepped forward and started petting Benjamin. “He’s a beautiful dog, but excuse me for saying that he’s not as beautiful as you, sweetheart.”
 Jacob just stared at her with those engulfing green eyes for what felt like eternity. Casey smiled softly, blushed, and said thank you, but she looked to the ground. She wasn’t used to compliments so she wasn’t sure how to handle this. She had never gotten any compliments from Patrick. It was always negativity she got from him.
Jacob stepped back from petting Benjamin. “We are sorry if we frightened you, sugar.”
Casey just smiled, dropped her head a bit, and nodded.
Chase nodded back. “We’ll see you later, sweetheart, be careful driving this part of the road, it is a little curvy.” They both nodded their heads and gave her a grin before they turned around. Casey just smiled a thank-you. Casey watched them return to their truck and as soon as they started to turn to get in, she turned herself around, hoping they didn’t see her staring at their asses. She waited for them to take off and as soon as they were out of sight, she slumped against the car and let out a breath. Oh my God, I thought I was going to orgasm just looking at them and hearing them talk, I didn’t realize they made cowboys so hot. Casey just stood there in amazement trying to catch her breath and remembering their built chests and how well they filled out their jeans. She loved a guy that had a nice ass.
* * * *
Chase looked over to Jacob and he just nodded his head. “I hear what you’re thinking, brother, I’m thinking the same thing. She must be the girl that Dad was talking about the other day at the restaurant. She’s the one. We have waited a long time and she is finally here. And she is more beautiful in person than in my dreams, with her long dark hair and sky-blue eyes.”
The concern in Chase’s voice didn’t need to be spoken.
Jacob made the comment, “Something happened to her.”
Chase said, “More like someone happened to her. Did you see the way she looked down to the ground when we talked to her?”
“Yeah,” Jacob said, “Some guy did a number on her. I just wanted to go over to her and pull her in my arms so she knew she was safe with us. All I can say is he better never find himself here in Lusting, Montana or he will have a hurting coming.”
“Amen to that, brother.”
Casey smiled. “To tell the truth, when I was dancing I was only thinking about you. I wasn’t paying attention to anyone else. I was pretending you guys were there touching me.”
 Chase and Jacob got serious looks on their faces. “You don’t have to pretend, sweetheart, because we don’t plan on ever leaving you alone, in any way. You’re ours and you know it, now.”
Chase sat up and stalked toward her. He puts his hand around the back of her neck and pulled her toward him and into a hard and feverish kiss.
Jacob moved behind her and gripped her waist and pushed his erection into her. He started biting and kissing her neck and he slid his hands up her sides to her breasts.
“You’re not wearing a bra, baby. Mmm, very nice, I think from now on this is exactly the way you need to be,” Jacob whispered in her ear.
He grabbed ahold of her breasts like he was never going to let go. He started pinching her breasts and she abandoned Chase’s mouth for a moment and cried out. Chase went back to exploring her mouth with his tongue and she was matching him. Chase pressed against her so hard she could feel his erection jutting into her. She had her arms around Chase’s shoulders, which gave Jacob more room to touch her.
Chase pulled away from her and looked into her eyes. “Are we moving too fast for you, baby? Because if we don’t stop now I’m not going to be able to stop.”
Chase and Jacob waited for her answer. “I want and need both of you, now. Fucking take me.”
That’s all they needed to hear.
Jacob whispered in her ear, “God I love your sweet ass, baby, I can’t wait to take you there. But we will get to that later. Right now, I need to taste your sweet pussy.”
They pulled her shirt over her head, exposing her breasts.
“Oh baby, you are so fuckin’ beautiful.
Then Chase unbuttoned her jeans, pulled down the zipper, and started to remove them, and said, “Baby, no underwear either, you know how we like you, let’s keep it that way.”
They lay her down on the blanket. She was completely naked and all theirs. Jacob kissed her hard, pulled away, and looked into her eyes.
“I need to taste you now, baby, I can’t wait any longer.”
He worked kisses all the way down to her pussy. She spread her legs willingly and Jacob gave her a seductive grin. Chase took her nipple into his mouth, sucking and biting, pinching her other with his big rough fingers.
Chase then took her lips hard and didn’t let go. Jacob started licking her pussy and then he sucked hard onto her clit. He buried two fingers into her cunt and she arched her back, breaking from Chase’s kiss and crying out, “Jacob.”
He kept working his fingers in and out of her. Her body was on fire and she was losing control. Jacob stopped and looked at her. “Don’t you dare come yet, baby. Not until we say so.”
She just looked at him, panting for more. “Please don’t stop, Jacob.”
“Oh I won’t, baby.”
Jacob continued licking her pussy softly and teasing her so she couldn’t come. She was getting frustrated.
Chase took her lips again, breaking away. “I need to feel those soft lips on my cock, sweetheart.”
Casey couldn’t move fast enough. She grabbed the waist of his jeans and undid the buttons and freed his massive erection.
“Easy, baby, we have all the time in the world.” She took his cock into her mouth and sucked feverishly. She couldn’t get enough of him. Chase supported the back of her head and gripped her hair. He fucked her mouth and she took every inch of him greedily.
“Suck Chase good, baby. Give him what needs, take every bit of him.”
Jacob continued licking and sucking her pussy, getting her just to her breaking point and stopping. He kept doing this until he knew Chase was ready to blow. At the rate she was going it wasn’t going to be long, and he wanted Chase to blow first because he wanted to hear Casey scream.

STAY VERTICAL by Layla Wolfe

One two three four five six seven.  All good sinners go to heaven.
Peace Corps volunteer June Shellmound returns to Arizona to care for her dying mother.  At the clubhouse of The Bare Bones motorcycle club, June is swept into the drama when half-breed Lytton Driving Hawk barges in and demands recognition as president Ford Illuminati’s half-brother.
Hot enough to melt steel, Lytton has forged a life apart from the reservation as a brilliant chemist, living the high times at his pot farm in the mountains.  Lytton is no fortunate son, though, and the mortal secrets Ford’s been hiding about their father drive the last nail into their brotherly coffin.
Lytton turns his back on The Bare Bones and sweet bleeding heart June.  Blinded by vengeance, Lytton becomes ruled by his own demons, raising hell alongside Ford’s mortal enemies, The Cutlasses.  Alliances are torn apart within the club, loyalties are divided, and everyone’s true spirits are tested.  When the dust clears, Lytton and June find themselves running for their lives just to

Publisher’s Note:  This is Book #2 in the Bare Bones MC series.  This book is a stand-alone and can be read out of order.  However, it is advised to read THE BARE BONES first to get a complete picture of the club’s background, storylines, and setting. 
Publisher’s note:  This is not your mother’s contemporary romance.  Daring readers will encounter sexual assault, violence against women, general violence among men, consensual BDSM, and a HEA.  It is not for the faint of heart. It’s a full length novel of 65,000 words with no cliffhanger.  Recommended 18+ due to mature content.

Three Times A Lady, February 2014
The Substantial Gift, January 2014
The Good Switch, December 2013

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

SY WREN’S CALL by Lynn Hagen & Stormy Glenn

Phanta City 4
By Lynn Hagen & Stormy Glenn
Sy Wren has had it up to his ears with the werewolf stalking him. Until he's kidnapped by a demon, that is. His life is becoming increasingly complex. Worse yet, he becomes attracted to the demon holding him captive. His life just keeps getting more complex. Then, when men far worse than anyone he's ever met before come after him, Sy has no choice but to trust the demon.
It's just business. That's all. Daemon Brimstone is sent after Sy Wren, a siren who can lull any man with a few melodic notes of his voice. Thankfully, demons are immune to the siren's call. Daemon has no problem kidnapping Sy. Or so he thinks. Complications arise when Sy starts to become more than just a contract.
When the contract on Sy's head brings the worst of Phanta City to Daemon's door, he must flee with his prisoner or risk losing Sy forever.
He flirted with his red boa, shook his hips from side to side, and sang to the rowdy crowd. His earlier tension drained, leaving Sy to have a great time on stage, shaking his money maker and belting out his favorite list of songs. That was until he saw Fang moving around the tables, as if he were trying to get a closer seat.
Don’t panic. The man isn’t going to do anything in front of this crowd.
 Sy made sure he stayed away from that side of the stage—which really sucked considering all the money that was being waved into the air. Gritting his back teeth, Sy forced himself to strut over there. He kept a good distance from Fang as he jutted his hip out and continued to sing. This was his career, his life, and Sy wasn’t going to let anyone scare him away from what he loved doing.
He just wasn't going to allow the man to get close to him. He was being brave, not asking for trouble. Sy set one foot in front of the other, gripping the microphone as his eyes scanned over the crowd. The music flowed, as well as the drinks, which only helped the customers toss more bills at Sy's feet. 
His eyes drifted back toward his stalker and to his dismay, Fang wink at him as he raised his glass. Sy wanted to kick the wolf in the face, but restrained himself.
When his last number ended, Sy hauled ass behind the curtain, hurrying down the steps of the stage. His heel caught and he almost went sprawling, but thankfully he managed to keep himself upright. The last thing he wanted to do was sprain his ankle.
He stopped at the bouncer's side before looking over his shoulder to make sure Fang wasn’t hot on his heels. This routine was getting tiring and Sy wished the wolf would just disappear. Sy grabbed the bouncer's arm and guided him back toward the curtain. He parted it before he said, "The nutjob is back."
The bouncer's eyes glinted with anger. "I'll keep him from getting to you."
"Thanks." Knowing the bouncer was going to keep Fang away didn’t stop Sy's stomach from tying into knots. There was still the small fact of Sy leaving the Tuck & Tease Lounge. Fang might be waiting for him in the parking lot.
The shit I get myself into.
Which only reminded Sy of the date he was supposed to have tonight. Count Vladimir Dracul had called in a favor and Sy knew he couldn’t turn the coven leader down. He owed the vampire.
But he was in no mood to entertain some Ministry guard. Sy had bigger problems on his hands. But if he didn’t show, Vlad would have his neck.
Once back in the dressing room, Sy showered and changed into a pair of tan cargo pants and a light-brown sweater. It wasn’t his normal get-up, but he was trying to throw Fang off of his trail. In this bland getup, he blended in, and that was just what he needed to escape his psychotic stalker.
Fat chance considering the man had the ability to scent Sy out. He also didn’t want to lead his date on. Sy was doing this as a favor. He'd never even met this Van Pierre before. With the way his luck was going, the man would be butt ugly.
Please don’t let him be butt ugly.
At this point, Sy would take anyone who wouldn’t hound him like Fang. Being stalked wasn’t flattering in the least. It was downright scary. Especially considering that Fang was twice Sy's size.
"You knocked 'em dead," Kat said as he winked at Sy. "I wish I could sing like you."
"Honey, you have the looks," Sy said as he stared at the gorgeous guy. Kat Nipp really was a looker, and he knew how to use it. He had more admirers than even Sy did. "You rake in enough dough for the both of us."
Kat batted his eyelashes. "Flattery will get you everywhere."
Too bad it couldn’t get him out of his current situation or he'd flatter the shit out of Fang and Van Pierre. Resigned to a night of false smiles and fake laughter, Sy headed out of the club. The parking lot was empty. The security lights were shining brightly over the rows of cars. The owner of the Tuck and Tease Lounge believed in keeping his customers safe. Sy had been tempted a dozen times to tell his boss that he was being stalked, but Sy didn't want a big production made. As naïve as it was, he kept hoping that Fang would just give up.
He crept toward his car, scanning the parking lot. It took him six seconds to get from the door to behind his steering wheel. Sy maneuvered out of the parking lot and onto Bishop Road, heading toward Massimo De Milano restaurant. Part of him hoped that he was stopped at the door for his lack of attire so he wouldn’t have to suffer through this date.
But luck was still shitting on him. The maître ď happily showed Sy to his seat. Van Pierre wasn’t here yet, which only gave Sy time to think…and think…and think.
Sy was sitting there tapping a thin breadstick on the table, ready to leave when he spotted the hottest guy to walk on two legs. The man walked through the restaurant as if he owned the entire world.
Sy felt his cock perk right up as he stared at the cleanly shaven face, a dark expensive suit, and a chiseled cut that said the stranger took damn good care of his body.
And the man was heading right for him.
Sy sat up straight, feeling like a boob for not looking his best. He wished he had put out all of the stops when the man drew nearer.  If this was Van Pierre, he would have to thank Vlad.
"Monsieur Wren."
The stranger dipped his head before he took Sy's hand and kissed the back of his knuckles. "What a pleasure to finally meet you."
There was a high possibility that Sy was drooling. Thankfully when he wiped at his mouth, it was dry. "Van Pierre?"
" Ouí." Van took a seat, his musky cologne wafting toward Sy like an invitation to get naked. If they weren't in such a swank restaurant, he just might have.

Daemon picked up another piece of lobster and popped it in his mouth. His eyes never left Sy’s burning face. The sexual awareness that hung in the air between them was almost palpable. Daemon had felt it the first moment he had seen Sy dancing on stage a few weeks ago. He had chalked it up to the man’s stage performance.
Now, he wasn’t so sure. After watching Sy dance this evening, Daemon knew it was something more.
So much more.
The tension flowing between the two of them could have lit up Phanta City for an entire week, maybe two. Daemon's skin tingled, the hairs on his arms stood on end. Sweat trickled down the middle of his spine.
It matched the bead of sweat he could see slide down Sy’s neck and into his shirt. And damn, the shirt was so sheer that Daemon could just barely make out the man’s dark nipples through the thin material.
He arrived in the room after Sy had sat down. How sheer were those pants?  Did it really matter? Daemon only wanted to know how Sy looked totally naked, spread out on the bed. 
His body clenched, his cock thickened, and his pulse raced as need clawed at him.
Daemon had hard time drawing breath into his lungs. He wanted to reach across the space between them, grab the alluring man, and drag Sy into his arms. It was a battle to stay where he was and not give into his raging desires.
When the sweet, erotic scent of Sy's arousal floated on the air toward him, Daemon flicked his forked tongue out, a deep groan welling up from his soul.
It was an intoxicating flavor, thick and tangible. It was probably the most wonderful scent Daemon had ever tasted. He wanted to lick it off of Sys skin, one drop of sweat at a time.
The scent made his dick hard. Made his balls draw up tight in hunger and his fingers curl with the need to touch.
This is what happened when a man denied himself for too long.
He stood, the chair clattering behind him. Sy's eyes rounded as he gazed from his plate to Daemon.
Sy got up from the table, his napkin falling from his lap as he backed away. The man could run, but he wasn’t going to get far.
Daemon stalked the man across the room until Sy had nowhere to run but up on the bed. Sy started crawling across the mattress as if he knew he was being hunted.
The closer to the platform bed Daemon walked, the farther up Sy scooted until he hit the headboard.
He had Sy right where he wanted him. Sy's eyes were glittering with disbelief as Daemon moved onto the bed. He sank to his hands and knees and started climbing toward the man he planned to balls deep inside of in the next ten minutes—two if they skipped the foreplay. He lowered his eyelids to tiny slits, licking his tongue across his bottom lip.
Sy was going to be his. 
The siren swallowed so loudly that the sound echoed in the room. His hands clenched the pillows, his expression resembling prey who knew the predator was coming. “Wha-What are you doing?”
“What does it look like, krásna?” Daemon grabbed Sy’s ankle and jerked the man down until Sy was lying flat on his back in the middle of the platform bed.
No, they would have to do the whole ten minutes—maybe even thirty. It would be a travesty of justice if he skipped touching every inch of Sy’s gorgeous body.
As his eyes drifted over Sy and he had his answer about the lounge pants. Except for a tiny triangle of darker fabric that barely covered Sy’s groin, the pants were almost totally transparent. Daemon's breathing became shallow as he stroked his hand over Sy’s ankle right where the lounge pants ended. The pads of his thumbs made tiny circles as he watched Sy's reaction to his touch.
“Your skin is very soft.
“M-My skin has to be for work.”
He couldn’t breathe. He couldn’t think. Daemon had to taste.
Daemon slid his fingers up Sy’s leg until the sheer fabric was pushed aside, and then leaned down to drag his tongue across the salty flesh, the taste going straight to his head.
Sy jumped, his leg jerking in Daemon’s grip. Daemon tightened his hand as he bit down gently, not enough to break skin, but enough to raise goose bumps on Sy's leg. He slowly licked where he'd bitten Sy, his tongue tracing circles as the siren shivered. His eyes turned to liquid pools of heated gold as he gazed down at Daemon.
Licking Sy was like immersing himself in addictive sweetness.
“Dae-Daemon.” Sy’s voice stuttered, breathless.
“Yes, krásna?
Sy shuddered when Daemon licked another patch of skin, and then another, inhaling as he dined on the man. With each bit of skin that Daemon ran his tongue over, Sy’s resistance became less and less until the beautiful siren was pushing toward him instead of pulling away.
That's right, sexy. Let me have you.
“We…” Sy licked his lips until they glistened. “Maybe we shouldn’t do this.”
The side of Daemon's mouth twisted into a grin, mirroring the perverse amusement brought on by Sy’s attempt at stopping the blazing inferno igniting between them. “We should definitely do this.”

Monday, May 26, 2014

I HEART YOU by H.C. Brown

After a six year absence, Kale Stone returns to Australia to inherit his father’s vineyard, Vine Mountain Winery, but finds a shocking requirement to the will. His homophobic father set an impossible condition: he must marry or reach age thirty-five before he can inherit the family business and fortune. Unable to run the winery without the money, he has no choice but to sell. 

The only light in the darkness is his childhood friendship with the winery manager, Tyler Duram, which grows into a secret love affair. When an offer arrives for the vineyard, it includes a contract for Tyler. Unwilling to lose Tyler, Kale searches for another solution— until he catches Tyler kissing another man.


KALE STONE dropped his bags on the glossy tiled floor and stared out the thick glass windows of Brisbane Airport into the shimmering Australian heat. The place had changed in the past six years. Lord, he hardly recognized the landscape. Set apart from the Domestic terminal, the new glass-and-chrome International Airport rose from the gray blacktop in a feat of modern architectural brilliance. A young couple bustled by. He smiled. Hell, it’s good to hear the Aussie accent again.

Turning away from the window, Kale recognized Tyler Duram’s lean, muscular frame resting casually against the Arrivals doorway. He drew a deep breath. Tyler reminded him of the beach; his blue shirt hung open to display a yard of golden tanned skin, stretched over an impressive six-pack. Tousled, sun-streaked brown hair tumbled past his collar, and those eyes… deep and dangerous as the ocean.

Kale lifted his bags and headed toward him. Oh Lord, the sight of Tyler made him hard. He grinned at him. His hunger for Tyler reignited at his friend’s frank sexual appraisal and slow, sultry smile. The emotions he thought long lost awakened and swirled inside him. Kale swallowed hard.

Tyler pushed away from the wall and sauntered toward him. “Welcome home, Mr. Stone. I’m sorry about your dad.” He tucked his thumbs into the loops on his jeans and wet his bottom lip with the tip of his tongue.

Kale met his gaze with a smile. When Tyler reached for the bags and brushed the knuckles of one suntanned hand against Kale’s thigh, his heart pounded. Settle down.

He sucked in a deep breath. How could Tyler send his libido into overdrive after such a long time? He forced his words to remain casual. “I’m not upset in the least, and it wasn’t ‘Mr. Stone’ when we were kids, Tyler.”

“You weren’t my boss then.” Tyler ran a hand through his hair.

“It’s still Kale, same as always. My father was Mr. Stone.” Kale chuckled. “So, Tyler, do you really work for me? You’ll have to tell me how that happened.” He reached for the suitcases. “Thanks, I can carry my own things.”

“Well, then, welcome home, Kale. It’s good to see you, man.” Tyler released Kale’s bag and slapped him on the back. “I thought maybe things would be different between us now that you’re a big-shot French vintner.”

Everything had changed. Tyler’s body, for one. Kale wanted to push him against the wall and slip straight into his fine ass. He swallowed hard and averted his gaze. One look into those hooded blue eyes and he’d say something stupid.

“I’m older and I know a lot more about wine, but I’m still the same person my old man threw out. I’m still proud to be gay, and I don’t give a damn who knows. Now what about you? How did you come to work for the old man? He obviously didn’t discover your orientation.”

“Me? No, your dad never found out about me.” Tyler gave him a slow smile. “I came with the ranch. Part of the deal when he purchased my parents’ property. I have no complaints. I’ve always had an interest in winemaking. Hell, I practically grew up at your winery. I went to college, worked my way up to manager, and now I work for you.” He smiled. “Hey, do you remember old Bluey? And the day we filled up his work boots with cement and his hat with horse shit?”

Kale grinned “Sure, and I remember the whipping I got too; better still was the day we filled his hubcaps up with shrimp shells. The poor old bastard was trying to find out where the smell was coming from for weeks.”

“Yeah, those were the days.” Tyler chuckled and led the way to the exit.

“Sure were, the summers went on forever. Two wild, out-of-control kids raising hell. I’m surprised we didn’t end up in prison. We were lucky. Is old Bluey still alive?”

“Oh, yeah. The old coot is waiting by my rig. He insisted on coming. I guess he thought I might go to the pub or something. He still thinks I’m eighteen.” Tyler laughed.

“Do you spend a lot of time in the pub?”

“Nah, not really. I prefer a nice, intimate meal at a restaurant—and wine. Most of the guys at the pub would tar and feather me if I asked for a glass of chardonnay.” He flicked a long-lashed glance at Kale.

“That would be my kind of perfect too. It looks like we’ve a lot of catching up to do.”

“Uh-huh.” Tyler winked. “A good place to start is why you left. Hell, I woke up one morning and you were gone. My best friend had fucked off without a word. You didn’t bother to contact me or send an e-mail, in what—six years?” His forehead wrinkled in a frown. “That hurt.”

Kale stopped in midstride and spun to face him. “Left? My father threw me out with nothing but the clothes on my back! I didn’t have your e-mail address or phone number, and with the shock of the old bastard kicking me to the curb, I’m surprised I remembered my own name. I wasn’t allowed to take anything, not a photograph of my mother or even a fucking clean shirt. No phone, nothing, and I lost everyone’s damn contacts. It’s not like you had a Facebook page, is it? I did write to you, though, but it’s hard to keep up a one-sided conversation. If you didn’t receive my letters, I can only assume your parents withheld them. Maybe they discovered the reason my old man chucked me out. I called too, but the number had been disconnected.”

“I’m not sure what happened to the mail. My parents moved out a week after you left, so all the mail went to the big house.” Tyler rubbed his chin. “I guess your dad had a hand in destroying your letters. How did you get to France? It’s a bit far to hitchhike.”

“I had a small legacy from Mom and went to live with my uncle in France.”

“So, tell me why.” Tyler’s eyes narrowed. “Or is it a state secret?”

“My dad found out I’m gay.”

“Yeah, like that was a secret.” Tyler continued toward the exit.

Kale chewed on his lip, painfully remembering the last argument with his father. There could be no reasoning with him. God, he had only embraced Sam Jones in the crushing shed, and that would not have been enough reason for his father to disown him. Someone must have informed his father about his sexuality, but who? He lifted his shoulder, wincing at the pain still present after six years of physiotherapy. Truthfully, his father’s passing had brought a feeling of relief rather than sorrow.

The glass doors leading from the airport slid silently open, and a blast of scorching air rammed into Kale. Holy cow, he’d forgotten how high the temperature got in Queensland in January. He dropped his bags by his feet and wrenched off his jacket, then rolled up the sleeves of his long-sleeved white business shirt.

“You might want to lose the tie; it’s forty degrees centigrade. That’s over one hundred degrees Fahrenheit, in case you’ve forgotten.” Tyler chuckled, bending to lift one of the bags.

Kale ripped off his tie, stuffed it in his pants pocket, and picked up his other bag.


Following Tyler to the parking lot, he grinned when he saw Bluey leaning against a sparkling black SUV.

“Good to see you, Bluey. You haven’t changed a bit.”

“Well, you sure have filled out. Grown a might too. I wasn’t too sure I’d recognize you. It’s been… what… six years since you left? Are you glad to be back?” The old man’s dark brown face wrinkled into a smile, his pale blue eyes a sharp contrast against his tanned skin.

Kale threw his bag in the backseat, then turned to the old man.

“To be honest, I would rather stay in Provence. I didn’t intend to return to Australia. This will only be a short visit. We finished pruning the vines before I left, and the manager is quite capable of organizing the frost watch.”

“So you never had the chance to mend fences with your dad? Shame that, but I admit he was a cantankerous old bastard. You’ll be glad to know Vine Mountain is doing well, but your expertise will help it along. The Riesling vines have a great crop of fruit, and it looks like we’ll be right on schedule to pick end of March. The place has expanded some since you left. Your father bought the Durum cattle ranch and planted right up to Blackstone Mountain. Those vines should be productive next year. Yeah, and two years after you left, the Tourist Commission put Vine Mountain on the damn winery tour. We have a tasting twice a week. Stone Brothers’ Riesling is one of the top-selling wines in the state.” He climbed into the backseat of the SUV. “No harm done if you want to go back to France. Tyler here is a damn good manager. He runs the place, from harvest to bottle. He’s got a fine palate, knows his stuff, does Tyler.”

Tyler rolled his eyes and Kale grinned. “I’m glad to hear the place is in good hands.” He met Tyler’s gaze. “Does Sam Jones still hold the transport contract?”

Tyler stiffened and his lips formed a thin line. “I only give him work when we can’t get anyone else—the guy is trouble, Kale, a fucking predator.” He gave Kale a knowing glance. “Or have you got a short memory?” He cleared his throat. “You were lucky to be in France, away from the asshole—and don’t ask me for details. Trust me, you don’t want to know.”

Kale walked around to the passenger side of the rig, climbed in, and dropped into the comfortable black leather seat. Memories of Sam Jones filled his head. He had been young and vulnerable, and Sam had taken advantage of him. He understood that now, but at the time, Sam had taught him the savage delight of man love. The thought that Tyler shared a similar memory unnerved him. He dismissed the thought when Tyler slid in beside him. Hell, his heart raced with the mere closeness of this man. Lord, the scent of him—pine and warm man—made his mouth water. His cock twitched in anticipation the moment Tyler leaned toward him, reaching over his shoulder to gather the seat belt.

“Buckle up. It’s a $300 fine. You too, Blue.” He turned his head to grin at the old man in the backseat.

Tyler brushed his long, tanned fingers against Kale’s crotch to fix the seat belt. Looking at his transparent reflection in the windshield, Kale tried to think of something, anything, to slow his erection. He stifled a groan. Peppermint breath brushed his cheek and their eyes met. A memory long-suppressed eased to the surface, sending his libido into overdrive. His want for this man overflowed, and he swallowed hard, pushing desire to the back of his mind. The effort to disguise his interest had not fooled his friend. The knowing look Tyler gave him made his words come out in a rush. “Where are you living now, Tyler?”

“I’m living in the big house. Do you mind?” Tyler started the engine, and they moved off into a line of traffic exiting the parking lot.

Heat shimmered off the blacktop, but nothing came close to the heat curling around his balls. Kale swallowed and kept his eyes ahead. He shrugged, hoping to display an air of nonchalance. “No, of course not. I’d really enjoy your company.” More than you’ll ever know.

“Good. I prefer to be away from the live-in employees. I believe to keep order I can’t be one of the boys. Did you know your old man built a block of self-contained units, fourteen all together?” Tyler flashed him a too-white grin. “We’ve been busy in your absence.”

Kale racked his brain. He had picked up an Australian newspaper that mentioned the winery’s revamp a year after he’d left. “Ah, yeah, I heard something ages ago. So how many live-in employees do we have? I’m guessing we still have permanent staff and the casual workers for the harvest?”

“The casual workers vary, but with the new building and the old bunk house, you have twenty-five men onsite, a secretary—sweet little Joanie Smith—then there’s buxom Betty, the cook, and her four daughters, all as hot as hell.”

“You’ll have to watch him with the womenfolk, Kale. It’s like having a stud bull around.” Blue leaned forward and grasped the back of Kale’s headrest. “He can’t keep it in his pants for more than a day. You should hire him out and make some extra cash.” He chuckled deep in his chest.

Kale grinned and turned in his seat to face the old man. “Is that so? Well, don’t worry, Blue, I’m guessing the old man’s stock whip is still hanging in the study.”

“Yep, it’s still there.” Blue slapped Tyler on the shoulder. “But I’m guessin’ he runs fast too—has to with all the husbands in the valley after him.”

“Be careful, Blue. Kale’s got a reputation too.” Tyler glanced at Kale and raised a dark brow before returning his gaze to the road. “I hear you’ve handled a lot of horny men in your time.” He chuckled and turned his head to wink at Kale.

Concentrating on just taking the next breath, Kale shrugged. “No, not a lot… just a select few.”

JET LAG and sheer exhaustion claimed Kale on the journey home. He rested his head against the padded seat and dozed. The dry Queensland countryside flashed past. The changing landscape never failed to amaze him. Lush green trees and pasture in the rainy season turned to crisp brown scrub in days under the summer sun. A familiar scent of fire filtered into the cabin, and he opened one eye to catch a glimpse of a charred forest blackened by a recent bushfire. Nothing had changed; life in Australia had continued without him.

Three hours later, he caught sight of the homestead. The one-hundred-year-old house had received a new coat of white paint and shimmered like a confection of white meringue in the sunshine. A small fenced garden filled with vegetables sat in the shade of a new water tank. The abundance of lettuce and tomatoes was the only splash of color in the dusty earth.

He opened the door and slid from the seat. A burst of heat cut through his shirt and stopped his next breath. Jesus, he had to get inside before his blood boiled. He moved swiftly toward the house and taking the steps two at a time, reached the front door. He paused beneath the wide awning, a mixture of revulsion and regret churning his gut. He’d left this place and swore he’d never return. Tyler moved to his side, his face creased in a grin. Kale turned to him and raised a brow. “Spill it, what happened with Sam?”

“He wanted me to be his boy.” Tyler shrugged. “I guess he missed you.”

“And… did he get you?”

Color pinked Tyler’s cheeks, but anger flashed in his eyes. “That was a long time ago, and like I said, it’s better you don’t know, and I’d rather keep the details to myself, okay?”

“What the fuck did he do to you?”

“Let it go, Kale. It’s better this way.” Tyler bounded up the stairs and pushed open the front door.

God, the musky scent of Tyler washed over him, driving him insane. What had happened between Tyler and Sam to cause such a reaction?

“Ah, Barns will be waiting for you. I noticed his car outside.” Tyler waited for him to enter and shut the door. “He’ll want to speak to you about the will. I’ll let Betty know we’re back. She’ll have made something special to eat. She likes to make a fuss.” He strolled toward the kitchen.

Blissfully cool inside the air-conditioned house, Kale glanced around the home. Strange after being away that the house appeared smaller than he remembered. He stared at his father’s office door with trepidation. He didn’t want to deal with this right now. His head ached with exhaustion. He drew a deep breath and walked into his father’s office to greet the family solicitor. The aged, balding lawyer, in an impeccably tailored brown suit, rose from behind his father’s carved mahogany desk and peered at him over the glasses perched on the end of his nose.

Kale ran a hand through his damp hair and met his gaze. “My apologies, Mr. Barns. I understand you’ve been waiting some time?”

“Not to worry, plenty here to keep me occupied.” He tapped the papers littering the desk. “I thought it best to get all the legal documents out of the way so you could get yourself settled.” He offered his hand. “Welcome home.”

“I appreciate you coming. I’ll need to acclimatize before I venture too far. It was snowing in France when I left, and I’d forgotten how hot it gets here.”

Kale shook his hand, turned, and collapsed into the chair opposite the desk. The smell of cigars and sweat brought back a rush of memories. His father standing over him, fists clenched, his eyes blazing with disgust. His stomach became jittery just thinking about it. How his father had changed after his mother died. He’d become a ruthless bastard in less than a year. Once Kale had loved him, but now it had become too late for forgiveness.

The papers rustled on the desk, bringing Kale’s attention back to Mr. Barns. He forced his mind to concentrate on Barn’s soft voice.

“It’s all pretty straightforward, Kale, but there is a condition. Vine Mountain goes to you, lock, stock, and barrel with $100,000. The rest of your father’s fortune, amounting to about $27.5 million, will be held in trust until you reach the age of thirty-five, unless you marry. He was very aware of the recent High Court ruling against same-sex marriages, and although I did insist the government’s position could change, he would have none of it. He insisted Australian politicians were too ‘old school tie’ and set in their ways to change the law in the next millennium.” The lawyer rested his glasses on the desk, his face creased in a deep frown. “I did explain the difficulty this would impose on you at the time the will was drawn, but your father refused to budge. He was of the opinion with enough incentive you would change your sexuality. The terms will stand up in court.”

Anger straightened Kale’s spine. He dragged in a deep breath, trying to absorb the implications. “But it doesn’t specify I must marry a woman?”

“No, the term is not gender specific. There is a loophole. It does not state a requirement for an Australian marriage license either. You must simply produce a certificate of marriage to inherit the estate.”

Kale scrubbed his hands over his face. His father expected him to fail—$100,000 would not pay for the running of Vine Mountain Winery for a month. He sighed. What’s new?

“Is that for me, personally? Did he leave anything to run the bloody company?”

“That’s it. I used my powers as executor to pay the employees until the end of next quarter and to cover any outstanding debts. You’ll have a few months grace before you need funds. I’m sorry, Kale. He insisted this was for your own good. He couldn’t accept the fact you are gay.” Barns held out his father’s last will and testament.

Taking the offered document, Kale set his gaze on him. “How long will it take to get the transfer of ownership for all of this?”

“Two weeks.”

Running a hand through his hair, Kale glanced at the calendar. January 15.

“Well, my only course of action is to sell the winery. I’m not planning on marrying in the next three months.” He chewed on his bottom lip. “How long will it take for a sale to go through?”

“If all the funds are available, usually the transfers and other paraphernalia take about six weeks.” Barns raised a brow. “But you have to get someone to buy it, and the market is down at the moment. It won’t be easy.” He let out a long sigh. “What about the people who work here and have made it their home? Some of them have been employed here for twenty years or more, or does loyalty mean nothing to you?”

Kale pressed his lips together. Disbelief rode heavy on his shoulders. His father’s homophobia would destroy a very lucrative business that had been in the family for generations. As if he’d marry anyone under false pretenses to suit his father. He leaned back in his chair and sucked in a deep breath. Selling was the only option. He rested his elbows on the arms of the wooden chair, steepled his fingers, and turned his attention back to Barns. “I might be able to get someone to take on the crew if the price is right. If not, I’ll contact the other wineries in the state and try to get them employment, but you’ll have to guarantee the two weeks’ severance pay.”

“I’m sure that’s within my duty of care. Nevertheless, Kale, this is a multimillion-dollar business. If you could hang on for one year, last year’s vintage will be ready for sale, and if you need cash, there’s plenty of vintage stock in the cellar.”

“Yes, but if I liquidate that, I’ll lose the hook to sell the winery. It will look like the business is going bad. I need a quick sale so I can return to France. I like my work there, and a third share in a small business suits me fine. I’ll manage. I have for the past six years without my father’s help.” He grimaced. “I’ll get the money when I turn thirty-five. It will be something to look forward to.”

“Very well. Do you want me to handle the sale?” Barns collected the paperwork and pushed it into a folder. He peered over the top of his glasses with an expression of weariness.

Exhaustion seeped into Kale’s muscles, and the grit from travelling scratched his eyes. He wanted to find a bed and sleep for a week. He forced his lips into a smile. “Yes, thank you. I will consider all offers.”

KALE STAGGERED up the stairs to his old bedroom, only to find it completely stripped of all his personal belongings. Nothing remained of his childhood; the furniture, the gifts his mother gave him on his birthday before she died, all of them were missing. Everything had changed and recently too. The room had a sterile, newly painted odor. A new king-size bed sat against one wall, mirrored wardrobes had replaced the old cupboard once crammed with memories. His father had tried to wipe out his existence.

He threw off his clothes, too weary to care, and flopped down on the bed. Sometime later, he awoke in darkness, coated in sweat. He reached for the bedside lamp and rubbed his eyes. The alarm clock gave the time of 5:00 a.m. He wiped sweaty palms down his thighs. “Jesus fucking Christ, what idiot turned off the bloody air-conditioning?”

He pushed to his feet and stamped across the room. He flicked the switch on the wall thermostat, turning the temperature to the lowest setting. The machine hummed into action and sent a wave of hot air into his face. “Fuck! Get a move on and cool down this place.” He pushed sweat-soaked hair from his face and headed into the bathroom to take a long cold shower. I hope we have water.

A short while later, he moved out into the dark hallway and made his way downstairs. The wonderful aroma of breakfast wafted up from below. His stomach growled in appreciation. It had been a long time since he had eaten the meager meal offered on the plane. A glow shone under the kitchen door, making a triangle of light in the hallway. He could hear voices coming from inside. He strolled down the corridor and pushed open the door. A middle-aged woman stood at the stove in deep conversation with Tyler. His friend sat at the table, drinking from a mug, a plate of bacon and eggs in front of him. He raised his blue gaze, and his full lips quirked up in a smile.

“Hey, boss, must say I’m surprised to see you up this early.” He grinned. “Has your jet stopped lagging?”

“Very funny. Shame you don’t dress as sharp as your wit.” Kale flopped down in the chair next to Tyler and yawned. “What day is it? I’m starving and I feel like I’ve just walked across the Simpson Desert.”

“You’ve been asleep for about fourteen hours. This is Betty, by the way. Betty, meet our boss, Kale Stone.”

Kale raised his head and smiled at the tidy, round woman. “Nice to meet you, Betty. Can you make me some of what he’s got?”

“No worries, Mr. Kale.” She filled a cup with coffee and pushed it toward him, then turned back to the stove.

“Sleep well?” Tyler ran his hand slowly up Kale’s thigh.

What the fuck? His impression of Tyler’s sexual orientation slipped a few notches. Hope rose in his chest, hungry with expectation. He sucked in a deep breath and willed his cock not to react to his friend’s inquisitive touch. Too late. I’m going to be hard all day. Kale met his gaze and searched his shattered mind for a few coherent words. “I slept like the dead. How about you? Do you usually get up this early?”

“Oh, you can get me up any time of the night.” Tyler squeezed Kale’s leg. His touch became bolder by the second, moving up his thigh to rest on his groin. “Do you still ride?”

Kale choked on his coffee and met Tyler’s amused gaze. “Sorry?”

“I have a couple of horses, and I like to go for a ride before work. Thought you might like to come—of course, after you’ve recovered from jet lag. There’s been a heap of improvements since you left. We can ride up to the new plantings. I’ll show you around.”

Kale accepted a plate of hot food from Betty and then turned his gaze to Tyler. “Sounds good, but I have a pile of paperwork to go over, so give me a couple of days.” He sipped his coffee. “Tell me, are you still doing the rodeo circuit?”

“Nah, no time, but I do enter the local events. I won a thousand bucks last year, bull riding.”

Kale raised a brow. “Bull riding? Hell, that’s dangerous.”

“Depends on the bull.” Tyler grinned wolfishly.