Genre: M/M, Contemporary Romance
Hart Emile is tired of cruising for guys, living a soulless existence. He needs a change; so when an acquaintance gives him the number of the gay friendly Red Fox Ranch that’s hiring for staff, he heads south.
Oak Redman is eighteen years old and desperate to explore his awakening sexuality. The moment Hart lays eyes on the handsome young rancher he’s smitten. Not only is Oak hot, spirited and very persistent, he is also the ranch boss’s son and strictly off limits. Hart tries to fight his feelings and to respect his boss and the family who quickly become dear to him, but after Oak’s Grandma suggests he gets with Oak he can’t deny himself the most exciting and enticing man he has ever met.
Hart’s not the only man to have noticed how sweet and charming Oak Redman is. A family friend, Steve, is also anxious to have the affections of the young rancher. Can Hart work out Steve’s dark secrets before it’s too late and keep his job, his lover and his life?
The high-pitched choir of songbirds echoed through the forest as Oak and Hart settled on a rug, late in the afternoon. The two of them had found a clearing at the side of the forest that was near enough to the tress to offer shade, but also close to the water where they’d been fishing. They’d no sooner sat down than Hart spotted something on the other side of the riverbank moving in the grass.
“Shh…I just saw something. I think it’s an otter.” Hart absentmindedly put a hand on Oak’s lap to still him. He didn’t know which was more exciting, seeing the otters, or the burning hot palm that touched his thigh. Oak sat rigidly, glancing between the handsome cowboy’s hand and the otter family bounding along through the grass bank.
“Aren’t you going to get your camera?” Hart chivvied him along.
“Oh…yes.” Oak moved slowly, reaching for the black bag and pulling the camera out. He attached the lens calmly and crawled down the small decline toward the stony bank. He beckoned Hart to join him then focused the lens on the otters. He could hear his companion creeping through the grass behind him. Belly down on the mud, Oak steadied the camera as Hart came alongside him, and let out a sigh as he sank down next to Oak to watch.
The female had two pups with her. As their svelte bodies wound through the rocks to the water’s edge, the mother otter glided into the river without so much as a splash, and the two pups followed. Oak lost count of the photos he took, possibly hundreds of shots as they paddled through the murky depths cautiously. Their fur shiny and dark from absorbing water, making their frames sleeker as they gracefully bathed against the flow.
“Can you hear them?” Hart said with a smile that sprang from his lips right through to his big gray eyes.
“Yeah…” Oak whispered.
The otters called to one another with endearing high-pitched squeaks.
“You ever seen them hold hands?” Hart asked, his lips so close to Oak’s ear that he could feel Hart’s breath tickling the skin.
“No, but I’d love to get a picture of it.”
After about fifteen minutes of lying in the grass like a predator, Oak’s pointed his lens to follow the family towards some big flat stones that were warm from the sun. The otters rested on the smooth surface, shaking their fur, and squeaking to each other until eventually all three disappeared through the long grasses.
“Hart.” Oak turned to face his companion on the ground.
“I just realized I’m getting damp down here,” Oak said, letting out a snort.
“Me too…” A wicked smile came to his dark pink lips that spread out with luscious fullness as he broke into a chuckle.
At that moment elation filled Oak Watching the beautiful man was always a pleasure. The river tickled over rocks, murmuring quietly, and Hart’s lips were so close to Oak’s that he could feel each breath on his skin. Moving closer, Hart’s mouth brushed Oak’s so slightly, that Oak wasn’t even sure they’d actually touched.
With closed eyes, Oak parted his mouth willing the man’s tongue inside. Soft, plump lips pressed against his sending a shudder through his spine. His breath hitched with anticipation. A chaste kiss ended with Hart pulling away and shaking his head.
“You and your wildlife photography are leading me astray, young Mr. Redman.”
“Sorry…” Heat rushed up to Oak’s neck and face. He couldn’t understand why he was blushing. The soft, innocent kiss had been simple enough, but the highly-strung emotions behind it made him hot with every need possible. All of his senses were raw, responsive to the man’s presence. What would Hart’s muscles feel like under the man’s touch? Warm, golden skin would rub easily against his, and the comforting, arousing scent of pine would enhance each sensation further.
Hart stood; the blue T-shirt had ridden upward, exposing his flat stomach and hard abs. He tugged the material down, covering the dark treasure trail leading to his cargo pants, and dusted himself off, shedding grass from his top. Oak stared, then realized he should roll his tongue back in and get to his feet. He followed Hart back to the blanket, and flicked through some of the shots he’d taken of the otters.
“You want a look?”
“Sure.” Hart put hand out and took the camera instead of coming close to Oak but being three feet away still made his skin tingle with expectation. An expectation that would go unfulfilled.
I enjoy writing both academic and fiction material. My research interests include focus on people who experience marginalization, both in historical societies and modern. Themes include disability, neurosis, homosexuality, addiction, mental illness, slavery and prostitution. The most important part of my work is creating multi-dimensional, believable characters that are able to build lasting romantic relationships against the odds. I want all my readers to laugh, cry and enjoy the erotic journey towards a happy ending.