My friend Holly Day is back on the blog! This is her eleventh release this year, so can we just take a moment to admire how freaking productive and creative she is? And on top of that, she’s a lovely human being, so if you’ve never read any of her stories, maybe give her a try? 🙂
Hello! *waves* Thank you so much, Nell, for letting me swing by again. Yesterday, How to Soothe a Dragon was released. It’s a story I wrote to celebrate National Button Day, which is on November 16.
I had this vision… I thought I’d write a story similar to There Will Be Aliens. If you haven’t read it, it’s a story I wrote for Extraterrestrial Abductions Day, and it’s a rather silly little tale about a human man and his best friend. They’re walking home from the pub after one beer too many when they get abducted by aliens. I had a lot of fun writing it, and I wanted to do something similar, only now on Earth.
Yeah. So. Badass aliens, right?
I wrote and I wrote and I grew more and more frustrated. I liked my characters, I liked the story, but I just couldn’t get it to work, and do you know why? What I’ve written is waaaayyyy more like a paranormal romance story than a sci-fi story. And in my mind, I was writing sci-fi.
Yes, Ocren is from another planet, but this is a fated mates dragon shifter story. No matter how hard I tried to push it into being sci-fi, it’s not – not really *shakes head*
I was about to toss it all together. Took a few days off writing, and when I read it again, I was amused. You think, as an author, you have control. You make up the world, right? You create the characters. You decide what they’re gonna think, feel, and do. Right? WRONG.
This story is a perfect example of things getting out of hand, so much so that I didn’t even know what it was I was writing.
But we have alien dragons, people dressed as The Beatles on the Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band cover and there is nothing more dangerous than lemons 😆
Derek does his best to avoid his neighbour, a big, scary Pacurian male (the alien race). Ocren, Derek’s neighbour, doesn’t know what it is about Derek, but he simply can’t stay away. He’s shunned by his people for being born under the Zatera moon. It makes him dangerous and unpredictable, but Derek could soothe him – if only he stopped running away every time he saw Ocren.
Ocren Starburst leaned his forehead against Derek’s door. He was gone. He knew it in his soul. The ache was welling up again. His hands shook as he pushed away from the wall.
Next time. He’d handle it better the next time.
Shaking his head, he went back to his apartment. Hopelessness painted the walls, and cold sweat coated his skin. He needed Derek. The moment he’d seen him, he’d known he needed him. He didn’t know what to do.
As soon as he saw him, he wanted to push. Wanted to take over his mind. Wanted to crawl into him, and he feared taking over his mind wouldn’t be enough. It was as if Derek was the key, the one person who could heal the rip in his soul. The only one who could calm him.
He was born under the Zatera moon—volatile and feared by most. His stay on Earth wasn’t one he’d chosen, but it was an effective way to get rid of the Zatera born. Put them on Earth, and since most of them never sired any offspring, they’d remain there. The only way to get back home, unless you were of an important family, was to sire a child. Then they welcomed you with open arms. A Zatera born would never be welcomed with open arms.
They’d placed him in a human building because no one wanted to be close to him. Fine with him, he didn’t want to be close to them either. His teeth grew sharp as he neared the window and looked at the ugly fire escape blocking most of the view.
After a second’s thought, he opened the window and pushed through. Derek would have no problem climbing out the window, he was small and fine-limbed—maybe not by human standards but compared to him at least. A metallic groan sounded as he put his boots on the grid and climbed up the two flights to Derek’s apartment.
Part of him was ashamed of his behavior, but he was only gonna make sure Derek was okay. He isn’t there. Whatever he told himself, it was a lie. Derek wasn’t in the building. Ocren sensed when he was nearby, and when he wasn’t.
Biting back a snarl, he looked through the glass into Derek’s living room—tidy. There weren’t many things, only a couch, a coffee table, a TV, and a bookshelf. His heart ached. Derek’s scent would be strong inside.
He glanced toward the bed and pictured Derek sleeping there, warm and cozy. His pale skin fascinated Ocren, and he wanted to run his hands over it, over every part of him. Burning heat coursed through his veins and his cock was painfully hard—it always was when he could breathe in Derek’s scent.
The scent wasn’t enough, though. He needed Derek, and he needed him now. It had been four years, and Ocren didn’t have much time left. He wanted to spend whatever time he had with Derek.
Ocren was forty-four, and he’d never heard of any Zatera born living that long without a mate. The few who lived long, happy lives were those who found a mate born under a more balanced moon. Hardly anyone would ever consider mating a Zatera born. They were cruel, turned feral, got violent… or so everyone was told—Zatera born included.
Ocren had been violent, he’d been angry—still was—but he’d never hurt someone he loved.
He didn’t have anyone to love here on Earth.
His rage was getting out of control. He’d almost taken off his boss’s head earlier today. The fucker had touched him—no one touched him—and Ocren had snapped. He’d thrown him into the wall and had been about to pounce when Kan had stepped into his line of sight.
Kan was another Zatera born, the only other Zatera born at their department. He was mated to Ilqan, a quiet Pacurian male with a soft face and sharp eyes. Ilqan leveled him.
Ocren had seen Kan at his worst, but after meeting Ilqan he’d turned into another man. He was still Zatera born, still sharp and harsh, as warriors should be, but he was more balanced.
Because of the incident earlier in the day, Ocren was on a week’s leave from work, and he feared it would tip him over the edge. What if he ended up slaughtering the inhabitants of the entire apartment block? He wanted to sink his fangs into anyone who’d ever spoken to Derek, and while part of him knew it wasn’t a charming trait, he couldn’t stop his brain from painting pictures of blood-sprayed walls and broken bodies.
A drop of rain landed on his forehead, making him aware of being outside—not only outside, but on the fire escape, three floors up, looking into an apartment that wasn’t his.
If his colleagues found out, he’d be put in isolation. He could hold on to his sanity while being at home for a week, but there was no question what would happen if they locked him up—he’d go feral.
Derek Herman is living a nightmare. Long before he was born, the planet was taken over by a mind-controlling alien race, and everyone is affected except for him. Derek does his best not to draw attention to himself, but it’s not going well.
Ocren Starburst is obsessed with his human neighbor. Every time he sees Derek, he wants nothing more than to grab him, hold him, and keep him forever. And four years of chasing him up the stairs in their apartment building has resulted in Derek refusing to even acknowledge his existence. That is, until Derek accuses Ocren of breaking into his apartment.
Derek found a button on his living room floor, the same kind of button Ocren wears on his police uniform. And while Ocren hasn’t broken in, he knows the button means someone has. Ocren’s race has kept their shape-shifting abilities secret for years, but now his other form wants out to slaughter everyone that dares to get too close to Derek. And staying in control proves hard when threats toward Derek increase.
Will they be able to keep Derek safe without Ocren losing control of his dragon self?
Gay Paranormal Romance / 28,195 words
According to Holly Day, no day should go by uncelebrated and all of them deserve a story. If she’ll have the time to write them remains to be seen. She lives in rural Sweden with a husband, four children, more pets than most, and wouldn’t last a day without coffee.
Holly gets up at the crack of dawn most days of the week to write gay romance stories. She believes in equality in fiction and in real life. Diversity matters. Representation matters. Visibility matters. We can change the world one story at the time.
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