Guest Post | One Would Be Enough by Holly Day

Guest-Post

Hello, everyone. Today, I’m here as Holly 😆  

Yesterday, One Would Be Enough was released, and it’s a story I wrote for Make Your Dream Come True Day. It’s about Teo who is a plain, ordinary human – or maybe not ordinary, but he isn’t a supernatural being.   

Teo has made his dreams come true, he’s achieved what he set out to do, and now he plans to live his life as he sees fit. There is only one problem – werewolves.   

Jerico is a werewolf. He left his pack sixteen years ago when his father demanded he’d mate with a female from another pack. He left and never planned to come back again, but when the pack runs into economic problems, they need the dowry that would come with Jerico’s mating.   

Jerico refuses and is thrown into a dark basement room. In the same room is Teo. He’s there because he refuses to give up his home to the werewolves.   

All they can do is wait, and to keep themselves occupied, they talk. None of them knows what the other looks like, but a bond is formed between them, and dreams can change. There is always the possibility of making room for more people.   

Teo is a product of my podcast adventures. Every night, I put on a podcast to fall asleep to, and they’re either financial pods, self-sufficiency pods, or fiction pods. Teo has achieved his dream, and his dream is pretty much the same as every other person in the F.I.R.E. movement. If I had any money, I’d be hardcore into F.I.R.E. and I listen to the podcasts, so… It’s just I hardly make any money LOL  

And then there is the fiction part. When I don’t have the energy for finances, I listen to fiction. There are some great pods – Nightmare Magazine and Lightspeed Magazine are some of my favourites. Then one night, I searched for MM Romance stories just to see if Spotify had anything to offer. And what showed up was a chapter from Unnatural by Alessandra Hazard, and I’d read that story just a few weeks before.  

I listened to it, and that, my dears, is how Teo came to be a person who is Financially Independent and has Retired Early (F.I.R.E.) and the proud owner of an erotica podcast 😂 

Blurb: 

onewouldbeenoughTeo Solace has worked hard to achieve his dream of owning a house. But he didn’t know he would become next-door neighbor to werewolves or that refusing the pack’s demand to sell the house to them would end with being kidnapped.  

Jerico Franklin left his pack sixteen years ago, and he never planned to return. By refusing to mate with the female his father picked for him, he believed he was doomed to live the rest of his life as a lone wolf. He didn’t expect to wake up in a dark cellar with a human by his side. Jerico shouldn’t care about the human, but when he learns his former pack intends to kill Teo to take over his house, he knows he has to find a way to get them out of there before he loses control of his wolf.  

Teo never believed he’d care for a wolf, but spending days in the dark with nothing but Jerico’s voice to cling to shifts his perspectives. Humans are a dime on a dozen. One more or less shouldn’t matter, but Jerico would’ve lost himself in the dark if it wasn’t for Teo. For how long will Jerico be able to keep Teo safe from the pack? For how long can he keep him safe from himself?  

Pre-order links:  

Gay Paranormal Romance: 17,039 words  

JMS Books :: Amazon :: books2read.com/OneWouldBeEnough 

Excerpt:

Jerico waited. Teo smelled nice. No artificial scents which made him suspect he’d used a soap meant for shifters while he’d been to the bathroom. He cleared his throat. Thinking about Teo’s scent wasn’t something he needed to do right now.

“Right.” Teo touched his shoulder. “Is it just me or does this feel terribly intimate.”

“It’s just you.” Jerico grinned. It was intimate. They were trapped in the dark, and Teo was touching him. He didn’t think Teo appreciated it. Most human men he’d hung out with were okay with friendly slaps, even the occasional hug—guy version, of course—but to feel their way around his body to find his mouth would send them off screaming.

“I’m afraid I’ll spill it all over you. It’s so damn cold in here, I don’t want you to get wet.”

Oh? Not the concern he’d assumed, but it sounded genuine.

Teo’s hand landed on his shoulder, slid up his neck, and caressed his chin. Jerico shivered. It had been a long time since someone touched him, and as a shifter, he craved it. A finger brushed over his lower lip and was quickly followed by the rim of a cup. He opened his mouth and swallowed greedily. Some water dripped down the corner of his mouth, and he made a sound to alert Teo of it.

“Sorry.” His fingers wiped away the wetness. “More?” He removed the cup so Jerico could respond.

“No, I’m good. Thank you.” Judging by the sound, Teo drank the last of the water in the cup.

“You okay holding the pitcher for another minute?”

“Sure.” He squeezed his thighs together without needing to. Teo leaned his forearm against his shoulder and grabbed the chair he’d been sitting on. The sound of it scraping over the floor filled the room.

“I’ll put it here, about an arm’s length from you.”

“I can’t reach it.”

“No, I know, but then it isn’t right next to you, so you won’t accidentally knock it over if you… kick or something. And I’ll stay on your other side.”

“What if you want to sit?” Jerico would love to stand and stretch, but standing all the time took its toll, too.

“Then I can hold it. Though…” He quieted and Jerico heard him slowly move away.

“What are you doing?” The panic spreading in his chest as he pictured Teo leaving took him by surprise. He couldn’t go anywhere and since when did Jerico care where some human went?

“When I woke the first time, I was on a… not a mattress but like a lounger cushion.”

“And it was in that direction?”

“I have no idea. I don’t know if we’re in the same room.”

Jerico grimaced. “We are.”

“How do you know?”

He took a deep breath. Would Teo refuse to give him water if he told him the truth? “Your scent is here.”

Teo was quiet for several seconds. “My scent? Do I stink so much you can tell I’ve been here for days?”

Jerico grinned. “No, you smell nice.”

“I smell nice?” Teo inhaled loudly, and Jerico pictured him smelling himself. Truth was he did smell nice. Jerico hadn’t noticed at first, but now when he focused on the scent… “You do.”

“What else can you tell by scent?”

Jerico was quiet for a few seconds. Had Teo figured him out? “We’re underground. Basement. The air is damp.”

“You don’t need a super nose to figure that out.”

“True. Our captors are wolf shifters.”

The room went silent again, and Jerico regretted saying anything.

“Hmm… They want my house, right?”

“I think they care more about the land than the house, but yes.”

“And what is it you have they want?”

“Sperm.”

Teo barked a laugh. “I have that too, but they’ve never shown any interest.”

Jerico took a deep breath. “They want me to mate with a female from another pack and have pups.”

Teo came closer and judging by the sound, he was dragging something. Seconds later, he sat on the ground next to Jerico. “And you don’t like her?”

“I’ve never met her.”

“I see, or I don’t because fuck it’s dark in here. Sometimes I panic and think I’ll never see anything again. Maybe you’ll like her.”

Jerico had a hard time following the incoherent babbling. “I’m sure you’ll see things again.” He took a deep breath. “I like males.”

Silence stretched, and Jerico wanted to curl into a ball. Werewolf and gay, Teo would stop speaking to him now.

“I can see that being a shitty situation, but if you talk to her, maybe she’ll understand.”

“Talk to her?”

“Tell her you’ll marry her, but it’ll be a mariage blanc. They can’t demand more than that.”

Jerico gave a sad chuckle. “It’s not like a human marriage.”

“What’s it like then?”

About Holly 

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.  

Connect with Holly on social media: 

Website :: Facebook :: Twitter :: Pinterest :: BookBub :: Goodreads :: Instagram 

 

Friday at Ofelia’s | The Thrill of the Chase by Ellie Thomas

Guest-Post

Today, we have the lovely Ellie Thomas on a visit. She’s gonna tell us a little about her story, The Thrill of the Chase. Welcome, Ellie!


Thank you so much Ofelia for having me as your guest today! I’m Ellie Thomas, and I write Historical Gay Romance. In this blog, I’m chatting about The Thrill of the Chase, my January release for JMS Books.

Perhaps because I write of times gone by, I tend to base my stories in familiar places. This helps me get my facts (and street names) correct! As I went to school in the beautiful Regency town of Cheltenham, in Gloucestershire’s famous Cotswolds, it seemed an ideal story setting. I was only waiting for the right characters to come to mind for a light-hearted Regency romance.

When shy country gentleman Adrian Lethbridge popped into my head, he seemed the perfect foil for dashing Captain Ransome and the comedy of manners that ensued in their romantic miscommunications. The spa resort of Cheltenham seemed a perfect backdrop for their story. So as the characters and their relationship developed, my research began in earnest.

I had already decided to set my story in 1813, not realising the town was relatively undeveloped at this point. I was interested to discover that the iconic Regency terraces only began to spring up in the 1820s after the end of the Napoleonic wars. This building boom transformed Cheltenham into a fashionable destination to rival nearby Bath. As Ofelia will know from kindly hosting my previous guest blogs, I can’t resist a book or three to help my knowledge of an era and area!

I managed to source a local history book, Cheltenham Before The Spa by Alex Craven and Beth Hartland, part of the Victoria History of Gloucestershire series. This beautifully illustrated volume took me back to when popular Regency districts such as Montpelier and Pittville were green fields. Before poring through this book, I hadn’t known that up until the early 19th century, the entire town huddled along the lengthy High Street with the open River Chelt flowing through the centre. A lovely quote from 1834 completes the picture of a sleepy settlement. ‘There is an individual who remembers the violets growing, and the horses grazing in the High Street.’ Despite already being a popular destination, this is a far cry from the grandeur of fashionable Cheltenham following the building spree!

Rather than have my couple inhabiting elegantly paved streets with tall stuccoed buildings, I could imagine Adrian and Guy walking down the leafy Well Walk to Bayshill Spa or stepping back from the High Street to the quiet churchyard of St. Mary’s to steal a kiss. This information helped me picture a greener, smaller and older Cheltenham that felt like the perfect setting for my couple.

I was also lucky enough to stumble across a website called Cheltonia. This fantastic project by longtime Cheltenham resident and graphic designer, Rebsie Fairholm, is not only a superb resource but a personal mission. I found the range of images and facts so fascinating that I had to drag myself back onto the relevant History of the Spa page. Over the years, Rebsie has put together an eclectic selection of architectural photos, ranging from gracious villas, old street signs, delicate wrought-iron balconies and even grates and coal holes!

Both the website and the book helped create vivid images as I imagined Adrian and Guy’s first meeting at an assembly; their instant attraction, followed by miscommunication before reaching a romantic understanding. I could see their emerging love story taking place in the bustling, overcrowded country town that was yet to evolve into the Cheltenham we know today.

Blurb:

The Thrill of the ChaseAdrian Lethbridge temporarily exchanges his quiet country home in leafy Dorset for fashionable Regency Cheltenham to support his aunt as she introduces her three daughters into polite society. As he is fond of his younger cousins, Adrian is happy to escort them and even bestow advice on fashion and manners as they attract new friends and admirers. But the last thing he expects is to make a match of his own.

When he meets handsome Captain Guy Ransome at an evening assembly, he is overwhelmed by his unexpected feelings and can’t believe that they might be reciprocated. However, Guy seems more interested in the thrill of passing pleasure than a meeting of hearts and minds.

In the heat of the chase, Guy impatiently regards Adrian’s hesitance as time-wasting game playing, not realising that his tried and tested seduction techniques send shy Adrian fleeing in the opposite direction. Can these contrasting characters reach a romantic compromise? And will the hunter discover his heart has been caught after all?

Extract:

As his aunt was engaged in conversation and his other two cousins were still dancing, Adrian took the opportunity to quench his thirst before he was hailed again as a default dance partner. There no servers hovering nearby, so he was working his way towards the refreshment table through the knots of bystanders when he felt a tap on his shoulder.

He turned to see the elegant gentleman holding another glass of champagne and wearing that worldly-wise expression that made his heart thump and his stomach turn over simultaneously.

“It’s freshly poured,” the gentleman said helpfully, “As you were, er, commandeered at short notice, I finished the remainder for you before it grew flat. I thought you might require another.”

“Thank you,” Adrian said, taking the glass and several much-needed sips.

The gentleman continued to peruse him with that mocking expression. “You seem to be very popular with the ladies,” he said ironically, as though reading Adrian’s most secret desires.

Don’t blush, don’t blush, Adrian ordered his rebellious complexion in vain.

“Those young ladies are my cousins,” he said with as much dignity as he could muster.

“Charming, I’m sure,” the gentleman uttered politely.

“They are sometimes,” Adrian said and then instantly felt disloyal.

The man looked at him as though guessing his thoughts, and his smile deepened. 

“As we are on drinking terms already, may I ask your name?” The gentleman said smoothly, causing Adrian to curse his gauche lack of manners.

“Yes, of course. It’s Lethbridge. Adrian Lethbridge of Dorset.”

Before he could ask in return, the pert waiter appeared before them with a full tray. Adrian squeezed his empty vessel into a space and took another, sensing that the gentleman had already reached an understanding with the fleeting object of his desire, given the discreetly flirtatious attention the attendant was affording him.

With a final coy glance, loitering for as long as he dared, the server progressed to the next group of thirsty dancers, allowing the gentleman to survey his behind with deliberate appreciation. The man glanced back towards Adrian. Correctly interpreting Adrian’s awareness of that telling glimpse, he smiled, his eyes gleaming with sudden heat.

Utterly unperturbed, the gentleman said, “It’s always agreeable to have one’s late evening’s entertainment lined up. You can join us if you are so inclined? It’s always more fun to share.”

Adrian gaped at this outrageous suggestion in disbelief and was engulfed with torrid emotion. Despite the correct assumption about his tastes, he knew for his safety he should immediately deny any interest. After all, it was dangerous to be different, and any sensible man, especially one drawn to other men should be icily indignant at such presumption from a stranger.

But rather than being consumed with disgust or rage, Adrian’s main emotion was envy of the gentleman’s ease in his skin and his preferences, together with the overt sexual experience that he wore as casually as his perfectly-fitted clothes. 

Allied with that was a disturbing spike of jealousy, images of what might happen between the waiter and the gentleman ripping through his mind, paralysing all coherent thought. This was the first time he had reacted so strongly to any man, let alone a new acquaintance and in a public ballroom. Adrian was aroused, horrified, mortified, and completely out of his depth.

He could not utter a word, his mouth gaping open like a trout. His distress and confusion were so apparent that the gentleman’s knowing grin began to transform into a frown.

He felt a gentle hand on his elbow and gladly looked towards the interruption. Never had he been so glad to see his cousin Julia.

“Excuse me, sir,” she said with a curtsey towards the gentleman, unaware of any tension between the two men. “Adrian, could I trouble you for another dance? Mama says we must leave soon.”

“Of course, Julia,” Adrian said, trying to keep the relief out of his voice. Avoiding meeting those treacherous stormy eyes that would no doubt find his unnerved response vastly entertaining, he gave a brief bow and walked away, feeling like he had escaped a terrifying fate. As he passed, Adrian half-made out the purring words, “Farewell, little rabbit. I will see you anon.”

Universal Book Link:

https://books2read.com/u/4XDrA6

Bio:

Ellie Thomas lives by the sea. She comes from a teaching background and goes for long seaside walks where she daydreams about history. She is a voracious reader especially about anything historical. She mainly writes historical gay romance.

 Ellie also writes historical erotic romance as L. E. Thomas.

https://elliethomasromance.wordpress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/elliethomasauthor/

Update | Goals and Self-Doubt

A goal should scare you a little, and excite you a lot.

– Joe Vitale

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Update time! Normally, I do a goals and a recap of the year post, so I thought I would now too. The problem is that I didn’t have much of a goal written down for last year. My goal was to write 250.000 words.

I wrote 289.333 so yay me! But in retrospect, the words don’t matter as much as me starting a new name, Holly Day, and that Holly had 12 releases.

What annoys me is that now that I went back to look at what I had written as my goals for 2021, I saw that in 2020 I wrote 377.038 words. I mean FFS! That’s almost 100k more than I did this year, and I thought I did well. So yeah… now I’m put out instead of pleased LOL

I also wrote that I would write the third story in the Rockshade’s PID series during 2021. Did I? No! 😠

Ah well… on to 2022

Goals for 2022

I feel a bit nauseous writing this, but I want to do 12 new Holly stories, and I realise it might not be possible, but I want to. And then JMS has short story calls every other month throughout the year, and I want to do those. Aaaand I’ve signed up for a thing in December that means I’ll have to write stories – one for Ofelia and one for Holly – plus I really want to write that third story in the Rockshade’s PID series LOL

Without Rockshade, I’ve written down 16 deadlines in my bullet journal – that’s more than one story a month. And short stories are awesome, really, really awesome but even if I keep all stories short, I don’t really see how I’ll be able to pull this off.

Routine and discipline will get you a long way, but I fear I’ll have to sleep at some point LOL

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