Patience is a virtue. But what if you wait too long?
Love is love. But what if the fight for equality gets in the way of building a relationship?
When everything changes, can renewal bring redemption?
|Publisher:||Totally Entwined Group Ltd|
|Sold by:||Barnes & Noble|
|File size:||2 MB|
About the Author
Helena Stone can’t remember a life before words and reading. After growing up in a household where no holiday or festivity was complete without at least one new book, it’s hardly surprising she now owns more books than shelf space while her Kindle is about to explode.
The urge to write came as a surprise. The realisation that people might enjoy her words was a shock to say the least. Now that the writing bug has well and truly taken hold, Helena can no longer imagine not sharing the characters in her head and heart with the rest of the world.
Having left the hustle and bustle of Amsterdam for the peace and quiet of the Irish Country side she divides her time between reading, writing, long and often wet walks with the dog, her part-time job in a library, a grown-up daughter and her ever loving and patient husband.
Read an Excerpt
Copyright © Helena Stone 2018. All Rights Reserved, Totally Entwined Group Limited, T/A Pride Publishing.
Here we go again. Xander stared as the man he’d spent a few sweaty hours with walked away without a backward glance. He closed the front door as softly as he could before his guest reached the stairs leading to the street. With a sigh, he rested his forehead against the smooth wood. Weariness crept into his bones, swiftly followed by anger. He squeezed his hands into fists and raised one before lowering it again. The middle of the night was not the time to slam his hand against the door, no matter how frustrated he was.
“Don’t hold back on my account.”
Xander’s heart stuttered at the unexpected voice coming from behind.
Shit. Bollix. Fuck. Xander raised his hand again and forcefully hit the door, immediately regretting the action as pain seared through his arm.
“Another one bites the dust, I see.”
Xander spun around, fury and embarrassment battling for dominance, as he glared at his housemate, and most of the time best friend, Eric.
“What are you doing up at this ungodly hour?” Xander didn’t try to keep the frustration from his voice, in the hope that an attack would hide the discomfort he experienced.
“I’ve got no idea. Give me a minute. What could possibly have me awake at this time of night?” Eric remained expressionless as he stared at Xander. “It may have been the bed frame rhythmically hitting the wall between our bedrooms earlier. Or the noises from the shower. Or maybe it’s because you still haven’t done anything to stop the hinges on your door from squeaking every time it opens or closes. Take your pick.”
“I…” Xander swallowed, biting down on a smart retort as he realized his housemate had a point. He glanced at Eric’s face and was just in time to see his features relax and a small smile tug at his lips.
“Cat got your tongue? It’s not very often you’re lost for words.” A smirk appeared on Eric’s face but the sting had gone out of his tone and Xander allowed himself a small sigh of relief.
“I’d love to know what’s up with you, though. You’ve always been popular, but I’ve never known you to slut around like this in the past. Is this a new thing? Something you developed while I was overseas?”
Xander opened his mouth to give a flippant reply then pressed his lips together again. He might not like to admit it, but once again, Eric had a point. Instead of answering, he shrugged and shook his head, hoping it would be enough to make Eric drop the subject and allow them to go back to bed. It was three in the morning. Apart from the opportunity for a few hours of undisturbed sleep, Xander couldn’t come up with a possible positive spin to put on his guest’s early departure.
“Let’s have a cup of tea, seeing as we’re both up, anyway.” Eric didn’t wait for an answer but turned and walked toward the kitchen.
Xander watched his friend’s retreating form and sighed before reluctantly following him. He didn’t want to have this conversation but he’d known it was coming. It had been six weeks since Eric had returned from Canada where he had worked and lived for two years. It had made sense to offer his spare room to the man who’d been his best friend since they’d both been ten years old, just as it had seemed logical to tell Eric there was no need for him to hurry about finding a place of his own. Reasonably priced accommodations were next to impossible to find in Dublin unless you were prepared to live in a shoebox, and Xander had more than enough space in his apartment. Of course, Xander hadn’t stopped to consider what having a live-in guest would mean for his nocturnal adventures. He sighed as he realized he wouldn’t be able to fob Eric off with half-answers and evasions either. The man knew him too bloody well.
When Xander dragged himself into the kitchen, the kettle was on and Eric had two mugs waiting on the counter.
“It’s still the middle of the night.” Xander figured it was worth a try. “You need to get up for work in a few hours. We could have this conversation later today.” Or not at all. Xander didn’t hold out any hope for that possibility.
Eric turned from the counter and looked at Xander. All signs of levity were gone and replaced by concern. “It’s okay. I’m wide awake now, anyway, and I’ve been trying to find an opening for this talk for days. Might as well take advantage of the opportunity.”
“I don’t really want to—”
“Leave it, Xander. You know me well enough to realize I’m not going to let it drop, now that I’ve opened my mouth.”
Xander nodded. Eric rarely dropped an issue after he’d broached it—something he used to admire in him. He sat down at the kitchen table and waited in silence for the kettle to boil and for Eric to make their tea. Only when they both had a steaming mug in front of them did Eric speak again.
“So, what is going on with you? It’s shocking how much you’ve changed in only two years. If I remember correctly, you used to say how you couldn’t see the attraction in one-night stands.”
Bollix. This was not what Xander had prepared himself for. He’d been ready for a speech about him being a selfish bastard. He was happy and willing to apologize for not taking Eric into consideration when he brought people home and took them to his bed. He didn’t want to talk about why he did it, though.
“I haven’t been that bad.” As he said the words Xander realized that not only did he sound childish, he also wasn’t being honest.