Today I am so pleased to welcome Keira Andrews back to Joyfully Jay. Keira has come to talk to us about her latest release, Holding the Edge. She has also brought along a very sexy, exclusive excerpt. Please join me in giving Keira a big welcome!
There’s something undeniably romantic about pairs figure skating. It’s always been my favorite discipline, and I grew up swooning over Gordeeva and Grinkov. When I wrote Cold War, I thought it would be fun to explore what happened when two rival pair guys fell for each other. When I told people I was writing about gay pairs skaters, some folk’s minds immediately went to Blades of Glory, but sorry, not quite!
In Holding the Edge, my new contemporary holiday novella from Loose Id, Misha and Dev from Cold War are back and trying to make their secret relationship work in the real world. Even though they’ve retired from competition, they’re still touring and performing in ice shows. Maintaining the illusion of romance on the ice with their female partners is part of their job, and they’re afraid that if they come out – especially if they come out as a couple – it’ll affect their careers. The world knows them as bitter rivals. Are skating fans ready to accept them as lovers?
Well, I was pleased this past summer to watch the gayest figure skating numbers from pro skaters I’ve ever seen. Johnny Weir (natch) and Chinese pairs skater Hao Zhang (an Olympic and world medalist) did a lovely routine called “King and Princess.” (Three guesses as to which role Johnny played!) Hao comes in about halfway through, and although they don’t do many moves together, it’s still fun to see something so different from the usual skating routines, and the ending is undeniably romantic. I hope we’ll see more show programs like this in the future. Hmm, maybe Misha and Dev can cook something up for a future story!
Happy holidays, and I hope you enjoy Misha and Dev’s first Christmas and New Year’s Eve together.
As the afternoon wore on, Misha tried to concentrate. Learning group numbers was part of doing any tour, and he could pick up the moves in his sleep. He went through the motions, watching Dev from the corner of his eye, remembering their last real conversation a few days ago. Like most of their phone calls since they left LA, it had ended with Misha on his back in bed, stroking himself, his phone tucked between his cheek and shoulder.
“I can’t wait to touch you again. I’m going to fuck your ass so hard you won’t be able to sit down for a week.”
Misha groaned. “Da. I want it so much.”
“What do you want? Tell me.”
“Your cock. Inside me. Coming inside me. Filling me up until it’s dripping out of me.”
Dev’s breathing hitched. “Yeah. I’m going to fuck you raw, and you’re going to love it. I bet your legs are spread so wide right now. Are you fucking yourself yet?”
Misha sucked his finger loudly and reached down to push at his hole. “I am now.”
Dev panted harshly. “You love it, don’t you? We need to Skype so I can see you. God, I miss you so much. Fuck, I’m coming—inside you, all over you—”
“Mikhail!” Alice’s voice vibrated with tension.
Blinking, Misha realized all eyes were on him and that Kisa was pulling his hand. She glared up at him before smiling at Alice.
“Please forgive. He is not feeling well. He didn’t want to cause a fuss, but he feels cold coming on. He took some medicine, and now his brain is very…fuzzy, I think you would say? Do not worry. We will be ready for the show.”
Alice nodded. “I know you will. You’re not Olympic champions for nothing. All right, everyone take ten, and we’re going from the top.”
Most of the skaters put on their plastic guards over their blades and clomped to the backstage area, eagerly reaching for their phones and flopping down on couches. While Kisa tapped away, Misha perched on the arm of the couch beside her, knowing it was a terrible idea to text Dev in front of everyone.
Dev and Bailey trailed in, still talking about their part in the opening number.
American women’s champion Hallie Mitchell glanced up from her phone. “Hey, Dev. A little birdie told me you might be working in LA with Farley Clark after the summer.”
Dev swigged from a bottle of water. “Yeah, I might help out a bit. See how it goes.”
At the thought of being back in LA with Dev, in a house together on the beach far away from anyone who knew them, Misha couldn’t hide his smile.
“But the weird thing is that I heard Mikhail was the one who set it up or something.”
Misha’s smile vanished as all eyes swung to him. He shrugged. “They wanted me, but I am not interested. They asked who I thought might be. I gave a few names. That is all.”
Before Hallie could ask anything else, Zoloto raced toward him, shaking off rain. Her wrinkled and droopy French bulldog face made her look quite sad, while really she was the happiest little dog he’d ever known. She was almost all white, and Misha bent to scratch behind her pink ears, smiling at the PA who’d been tasked with minding her. “I hope she has been a very good girl?”
The young man nodded vigorously, and Misha was sure that even if Zoloto had pissed over everything, the boy would never say a word. Zoloto suddenly barked excitedly and scampered off before Misha could grab her, leaping at Dev’s feet. Dev scooped her up and kissed her head.
“Hey there!” He smiled nervously. “Uh, who’s this?”
One of the other skaters laughed. “Zoloto, our tour mascot. Wow, she sure loves you at first sight!”
Dev avoided Misha’s gaze. “Isn’t she friendly with everyone?”
“Of course she is.” Kisa stood and plucked Zoloto from Dev’s arms. “Aren’t you, sladenkaya.” She passed her back to Misha.
A few of the skaters exchanged glances, and Bailey spoke up. “Okay, if I don’t get another caffeine infusion, I’m going to face-plant out there. Come on, people. Hook me up.”
Most of the skaters shuffled off toward the food table. Zoloto whined as Dev walked away.
“I know how you feel,” Misha whispered, kissing and petting her, certain this day would never end.
* * * *
With a deep breath, Misha put his eye to the peephole. No movement. He listened intently. The hallway was silent.
He quickly took a last look in the mirror over the dresser, fiddling with his short brown hair where it fell a bit longer over his forehead. He’d shaved and moisturized and dressed in jeans and a simple long-sleeved T-shirt that accentuated his muscles and lean hips quite nicely he thought. He stepped back for a final look. Perhaps the purple would bring out the blue in his eyes more, although the dark brown also suited him, and—
“Dostatochno!” Enough, enough, enough. He was behaving like a teenager.
As he eased open the door, Zoloto snorted, and he froze. But she slept on, and he slipped from the room. He was only a few doors down when Hanako appeared from the elevator with a soft beep and swish of doors.
She smiled brightly. “Good evening.” As always, Hanako was unfailingly polite. “How are you feel?”
Misha smiled. “Better.”
“Please tell if you need…” She paused, clearly struggling for the right English word. “Any things.” She smiled again. As the tour headliner, she went out of her way to make sure the skaters were all happy and looked after.
He held up a padded bucket. “Just getting ice. That is all.”
“Ah.” She smiled and nodded deeply. “See you tomorrow.”
He nodded back as they passed each other, and he made his way to the ice room at the end of the hall. He filled the bucket, relieved he’d thought to bring it. When he peeked out, the hall was empty. He’d passed Dev’s room on his way, and when he neared it again, the door creaked open.
Misha ducked inside, and a moment later, he was pressed back against the door, ice cubes scattered over the plush carpet as he and Dev kissed. Dev was already naked, and Misha touched him greedily, hands roving as he groaned. “Oh God. A month is too long, Vassenka.”
Dev sucked on Misha’s neck, his light beard scratching wonderfully against Misha’s skin. He muttered as he yanked on Misha’s T-shirt. “I don’t know what that means, but it’s been an eternity. Thirty-three days, to be exact.”
All Misha could do was moan as they stumbled to the bed and got rid of his clothes. He bit his lip, the feel of their already-fevered skin sliding together making him want to scream the hotel down. Dev’s hair was still wet from a shower, and Misha gripped his damp curls as Dev sucked his nipples and rolled on top of him.
Rutting together like boys, they gasped, hard and leaking. “It was the worst practice ever. All day I longed to feel you,” Misha mumbled. “I could not think of anything else.”
“Me either.” Dev gripped Misha’s hips and thrust against him. “I need you so bad. God, I missed the taste of you.” He licked at the hollow of Misha’s throat.
Misha wanted Dev inside him already, but he was too desperate to deal with lube and a condom. He kissed Dev deeply, their tongues stroking. “Come all over me.”
Above him, Dev’s eyes darkened, his nostrils flaring. “You want that?”
“Da, pozhaluysta. Please. Hurry.” Misha gasped out the words…
Copyright © Keira Andrews
Gay figure skaters keep their relationship secret—and end up on thin ice??.
Misha Reznikov has an Olympic gold—and a secret lover who just happens to be the silver medalist. Now that their competitive days are over, Misha and former rival Dev Avira are setting up house in LA and giving their relationship a shot in the real world. They agree that keeping their romance strictly under wraps is best for their pro careers and Misha’s family back in Russia. So what if Dev hasn’t told his parents, and they never eat out for fear of being spotted? It’s not perfect, but they’re together.
But as they prepare for a special holiday skating show on Christmas Eve in Dev’s hometown, tension builds. How long can Misha and Dev keep their love secret—and what happens if one of them wants to stop hiding?
After writing for years yet never really finding the right inspiration, Keira discovered her voice in gay romance, which has become a passion. She writes contemporary, historical, paranormal and fantasy fiction, and—although she loves delicious angst along the way—Keira firmly believes in happy endings. For as Oscar Wilde once said, “The good ended happily, and the bad unhappily. That is what fiction means.” You can find out more about Keira and her books at her website, and on Facebook and Twitter.