Today I am so pleased to welcome Keira Andrews to Joyfully Jay. Keira has come to talk to share an exclusive excerpt from latest release, The Christmas Deal. She has also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving her a big welcome!
Squinting down the sidewalk, Logan tried to see what was making Seth look like he might puke, his face going red the way it had when Logan had shown up unexpectedly and met Angela Barker.
Seth’s mouth was open as he stared at four people nearby peering in the window of a store that looked like it sold candles and oil and that kind of froufrou stuff Logan’s long-ago ex Jacinta had loved. If Logan never smelled lavender and that sandalwood shit again it would be too soon.
Grabbing Logan’s arm, his fingers digging in through the leather, Seth took a step back. Then he froze as one of the people glanced over and did a double-take. She was a blonde around thirty and had a nice rack under her tight jacket.
Her eyes went wide for a moment as she and Seth stared at each other, and then she slapped on a fake-looking smile and called, “Oh my God, is that you, Seth?”
Seth dropped Logan’s arm like it was burning and laughed shakily, calling back, “Hi, Bethany. Joe.” He paused as the other people looked over. “Brandon.”
Oh fuck. Logan wasn’t sure which of the three men was Brandon, but he assumed it was one of the guys who immediately linked hands and put on bullshit smiles. The two couples approached, Seth still frozen beside Logan, his breath clouding the frosty air in shallow bursts.
He looked scared shitless, and Logan wondered if he’d looked like that himself in the garage when he couldn’t breathe. Fuck, he hated when he was like that—so helpless and…bare. Seth had been good to him, and seeing his fear now, Logan wanted to protect him.
Hell, they were supposed to be pretending to be engaged—that was the deal, wasn’t it? Might as well get in some practice.
He slung his arm around Seth’s shoulders, squeezing when he felt how Seth was trembling. This breakup had kicked Seth in the nuts, and Logan wasn’t going to let any shit-brick ex make him feel worse. In a world full of assholes, Seth was good.
Putting on his own bullshit smile, Logan said, “Hey there!” He stuck out his free right hand to the closest guy. “Logan Derwood. Seth’s boyfriend.”
The man’s eyebrows shot up so far they might never come back down. He looked between Logan and Seth, his smile faltering. “Oh! Wow! Uh, hi.” He had to let go of his boyfriend’s hand to shake Logan’s. “Brandon Templeton.”
Logan squeezed. Hard. “Great to meet you.” He let his eyes drop down over Brandon—short, teeth too big for his mouth, and one of those bushy beards that must be making up for a small dick.
Then he looked away dismissively, moving on to shake the hand of Brandon’s boyfriend, Peter—thick neck, probably took steroids but could kick Logan’s ass—and the male/female couple whose names Logan forgot as soon as he heard them.
Brandon gave Seth an uneasy smile. “Babe, I didn’t realize you were seeing anyone.”
What an asshole. He had no right to call Seth any names like that—and right in front of Logan! The fucking nerve. Sure, they were fake boyfriends, but Brandon didn’t know that. Seth was rigid against Logan’s side, and Logan willed him to unclench.
“Uh-huh,” Seth managed, his voice higher than Logan had heard it.
“That’s great, babe.” Brandon tilted his head and touched his hand to his chest. “I’m so happy for you.”
Would Seth be mad if Logan punched the condescending prick? Logan wished he was a better actor. He couldn’t think of anything to say that wasn’t telling Brandon, his hipster beard, and tiny dick where they could go.
But it got easier when Seth exhaled and slipped his arm around Logan’s waist. Maybe it should have felt weird, but it was reassuring. They were faking this together.
Seth said, “I’m happy for us too,” his voice calmer.
Act like Seth’s your boyfriend!
Logan tried to think of something cheesy and in-love sounding. He went with “Me, three,” and leaned close and pressed a slow kiss to Seth’s smooth cheek, just the hint of five o’clock shadow under his lips.
He made it a lingering kiss—a kiss promising more once they were alone. A tremor vibrated through Seth, and he turned his head to meet Logan’s gaze.
His blue eyes were dark, and he licked his lips. Logan looked down at the movement and then back into Seth’s eyes, a bolt of lust shooting to his balls and waking up his dick.
The woman laughed awkwardly. “Well, I guess we should leave you lovebirds to it!”
Tearing his eyes away from Seth’s, Logan looked at her like she was incredibly boring, which she probably was. “I guess you should.” He didn’t even glance at the others as he strode forward with Seth at his side, forcing them to move out of the way or be stomped on by his combat boots.
He could feel them watching—the back of his neck practically sizzled with it—and he knew they were whispering even though he and Seth were too far away now to hear. It was in the air, swirling with the snow.
Seth matched his strides, arm snug around Logan’s waist. “Wow.”
“Oh, look, pookie—that kind of chair would be perfect for our new table,” Logan said, stopping in front of a furniture shop’s window. He added under his breath, “Smile and play along, but don’t look back, whatever you do.”
“That is a great chair!” Seth exclaimed, pointing at it. He whispered, “You think they’re still watching?”
“You bet your ass they’re watching.” He needed to do something else a boyfriend would do, so he brushed some fresh snow from Seth’s dark hair. He leaned in and murmured, “Think I should grab your ass?”
Seth swallowed so hard Logan could hear it. “Okay.”
Slowly, Logan ran a gloved hand down Seth’s straight back, keeping their faces close as if they were nuzzling. Seth’s jacket was one of those pea coats, and Logan stroked his nice, round ass and slipped up under the hem of his coat, gripping the firm flesh.
He whispered in Seth’s ear, “Imagine I’m saying something really dirty.”
Seth made a sharp little sound that had to be a laugh. He reached around Logan, grabbing his shoulders before stroking one hand over Logan’s head. He teased the back of Logan’s neck and ran his blunt fingernails over the short scrub of Logan’s hair at the base of his skull, sending sparks through Logan and getting his dick interested again.
With guys it was always fast and rough—this was different. Logan figured it was definitely boyfriend-like. He had to hold up his end of the deal, so he’d do what it took.
Besides, he liked Seth, and that ex was a fucking idiot for dumping him for the thick-neck who probably also had a tiny dick thanks to steroids. Seth deserved a hell of a lot better from where Logan was standing, and it was satisfying showing Brandon that Seth didn’t miss him one little bit.
Then he wondered if Seth did miss him. “Do you wish he hadn’t left you?” he asked before he could tell himself to mind his own damn business.
Seth was toying with the ends of Logan’s hair, sending nice little shivers through Logan. He stopped, resting his bare hand on the back of Logan’s neck, warm and heavy.
“You know what? No.” A smile lifted his mouth, his lips wide. He laughed like he couldn’t believe it. “Seeing him now made me realize how much I don’t miss him. Not that we didn’t have good times over the years. We did—a lot of good times.”
“I’ll take your word for it.”
Laughing, Seth said, “We did. But it seems so long ago. Seeing him now, it was the strangest thing. I’ve looked him up on Facebook and found pictures, but it’s been over a year since I saw him in person. And he’s so familiar to me—aside from that ridiculous beard. I knew him so well. So…intimately. I think I recognized his body before his face. But now he’s someone different. I wouldn’t want him back. I don’t.”
“Good. He’s a shit-brick.” Logan realized his hand was still resting on Seth’s ass, but he didn’t move it, just pressed firmly.
Seth was breathy as he asked, “Think they’re still watching?”
“Maybe. Let’s go a bit longer to make sure.” If they were going to do a job, they should do it right. He massaged Seth’s ass and nipped at his jaw, scraping with his teeth and grinning at Seth’s gasp.
“Okay, I’m going to look,” Seth murmured, his breath hot across Logan’s mouth. A moment later, he sighed and eased away. Logan dropped his hand, and Seth did the same.
“All clear,” Seth said. He squinted at the store window. “You know, that chair really is great. Let’s see how many they have.”
Logan shoved his hands in his pockets, suddenly not sure what to do with them. “Sure.”
As Seth opened the door, a bell tingled. He glanced back at Logan. “Thanks for all that, by the way.” He laughed, his cheeks going red. “You were very convincing.”
“Sure,” Logan repeated, feeling his own face go hot. “Anytime.”
Will fake boyfriends become the real deal this holiday?
It’s the most wonderful time of the year—except ex-Marine Logan is jobless and getting evicted. Worse, he’s a new single dad with a stepson who hates him. A kid needs stability—not to mention presents under the tree—and Logan’s desperate.
Then he meets lonely Seth and makes a deal.
Can Logan temporarily pretend to be live-in boyfriends to increase Seth’s chances at a promotion? If it provides a roof over their heads for the holidays, hell yeah. Logan considers himself straight—he doesn’t count occasional hookups with guys—but he can fake it. Besides, with his shy little smile, Seth is surprisingly sexy.
Make that damn sexy.
Shocked that Seth has only been with one man, Logan can’t resist sweetening their deal to teach him the joys of casual sex. No strings attached. No feelings. No kissing.
No falling for each other.
The Christmas Deal is a steamy holiday gay romance from Keira Andrews featuring fake boyfriends, bisexual awakening, a clueless single dad with an angry preteen, and of course a happy ending.
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.”
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Keira has brought a $10 Amazon gift card to give away to one lucky reader. Just leave a comment at the end of the post to enter. The contest ends on Tuesday, November 19th at 11:59 pm ET.
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