#FlashbackFriday

diving in teaser image

Preston and Sawyer Waters need a vacation in the worst way. Life stressors have gotten to be too much, and they need to reconnect. A month-long stay at a cabin in the woods is perfect to remember how to enjoy each other. But they never expect to meet the man who would fit with them so perfectly.

Wade Johansson loves his life. Running V Wilderness Adventures with his best friends, spending his life on the water, and being surrounded by nature is his dream come true. But he’s missing one key element: someone to love.

The three men find an instant connection and are quick to explore the attraction. It becomes clear immediately that they want a relationship lasting longer than just a vacation. But with Preston and Sawyer living in another town and Wade worried about how he fits, can they find the courage to dive in head first?

MMM Contemporary / 34 032 words

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EXCERPT:

And I did think about it. All the way back to the boat. As I tossed and turned during the night. When I stumbled out of the berth before the sun had crawled over the treetops and as I made coffee with trembling hands.

I thought about it as I took a quick shower, got dressed, and took the dogs out for a walk. It was no wonder I found myself outside their cabin a few minutes later. Accompanied by the chipper sounds of the early morning birds, I knocked on their door.

No one opened, and no sounds came from the inside. I shook my head with a huff. What had I been thinking, rushing up here at this hour? They were on vacation, of course they wouldn’t be awake at sunrise.

But as I decided to return to the boat, the door opened and revealed a sleep-rumpled Sawyer wrapped in a sheet. “Wade?” His voice was gravelly, his hair a mess, his eyes were bleary, and he took my breath away.

“I’m sorry. I didn’t think about the time. I should …” I gestured in the direction of the path that had brought me to their cabin.

“No!” His voice cracked, and he had to clear his throat. “No,” he repeated. “Please don’t go.”

Preston emerged from the bedroom and joined us. He’d pulled on a T-shirt, and it looked like he’d run his fingers through his hair to make it a little more presentable. “Wade?”

“Do you know what I did yesterday?” I blurted out.

They both shook their heads.

“I was hiding. Avoiding you.”

Sawyer’s mouth turned down and he reached out his hand to his husband, who took it immediately.

“Why?” Preston said.

“What did you mean when you asked me out? Did you mean as a prelude to fucking … or as a date-date?”

Sawyer’s answer was immediate. “A date-date.”

I shoved my hands in my pockets. “Have you, uh, done that before?”

“Just casually. Nothing serious,” Preston said.

“Then … what’s different now?”

“We like you.” Preston’s voice was soothing, as though he was trying to calm a wild animal.

And he wasn’t far off. My body was in flight mode, my stomach churned, and I couldn’t get enough air into my lungs. Neptune lumbered over to my side and sat next to me, leaning his massive body against my leg. I buried my fingers in his soft fur, comforted by his presence.

“Did you hide from us because you don’t like us?” Sawyer asked.

“No.”

“Then why?”

I turned my head away, unable to look at them anymore. So many questions were spinning inside my head, but I knew there were no answers to any of them. Not at this moment, at least.

What I wanted was to know I wouldn’t get hurt, because I had a feeling they could be very important to me if I let them. But who can guarantee something like that before they’ve even been out on a single date?

So, I drew in a deep breath of forest air, scratched my dog behind his ears, and turned to look at them. “Yes,” I said. “I’d love to go out on a date with you.”

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