Today I am so pleased to welcome Raquel Riley to Joyfully Jay. Raquel has come to talk to us about her latest release, Lucky Match. She has also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving her a big welcome!
I was going to be sick. I didn’t have butterflies in my stomach, I had a pride of lions rampaging through the desert. How I was supposed to keep food down at dinner, I wasn’t sure. Please God, don’t let me throw up on my date’s lap. Was it a coincidence that he suggested we meet at the Indian restaurant I began frequenting recently? Hudson would get a kick out of that.
I didn’t know my date’s name, but he was supposed to be sporting reddish hair or hazel eyes and somewhat resemble Lucky, so he shouldn’t be too hard to spot. When he texted me the date details, he also mentioned that he would lay a four-leaf clover on the table so I’d recognize him easily. Cute ad slogan, Lucky Match, and they used lucky clovers to signal their identities. I was sold. Let’s hope I was sold on my date as well. I really hoped this wasn’t going to be super awkward and blow up in my face.
I arrived at the restaurant fifteen minutes late due to a traffic accident. They’d closed the bridge off, and I had to detour. When I walked in, I didn’t immediately see anyone matching the physical description I had in mind, but I spotted a four-leaf clover keychain lying on a table in the back and headed over. Maybe my date was using the restroom? “Hey, Mr. B.”
Oh my holy stars, this was so awkward. What were the chances Lucky Maguire was eating here tonight and was going to see me on a date with my Lucky lookalike? And he was going to witness every awkward first date moment I was about to make. And he was going to know I was gay.
Oh God, he was sitting down… Don’t throw up, don’t throw up…
I looked down at the clover lying on the table, as if he could somehow know what it meant. My eyes drifted slowly back to Lucky. Then Lucky looked at the clover and back to me. I think our eyes dilated at the same time, but I wasn’t sure whose were bigger: mine or his.
“Please tell me you’re not Hudson.”
“I’m sorry. There’s been a mistake.” I felt so much shame at that moment. For hiring a date because I was too nervous to find a real one. For crushing on my much younger student. For lying about my name. All of it. I ran for the door, for my car.
“Mr. B. Wait! Don’t go.” Oh God, he was following me. He was going to try and explain or something, but I couldn’t even look him in the eye right now.
“I can’t do this, Lucky.” Nausea churned in my gut.
“Look, you already paid for the date. Let’s just go somewhere and talk. Just talk.”
“Probably not a good idea. I’m your teacher.” Sweet honeysuckle, did this mean Lucky was gay, too?
“Aren’t we in the same boat? Neither of us wants to be found out. I’m not going to say anything. This is between us.” I stopped at my car but didn’t get in, nor did I turn around and face Lucky, either. I just sort of stood there in a daze, waiting for fate to decide my next move.
“Mr. B., please, let me buy you dinner. I just want to talk. That’s all.” Then he touched my elbow with a slight pressure so I would turn around. “Please come back inside with me. Give me one hour of your time.”
How in the hell could I say no to him? How could I not. This had disaster written all over it in big, glittery, capital letters. I didn’t say yay or nay, just silently walked back in the restaurant and sat at our table. I couldn’t seem to think of anything intelligent to say and my lap became very interesting, devouring my attention.
“Mr. B., please look at me. You didn’t do anything wrong. I know you didn’t know it was me. And you have to believe that I didn’t know who you were.”
I did look at him then. “I’m sorry I lied about my name. Hudson is my brother.”
Lucky just laughed it off. “If I apologized for every fake name I gave to a hookup, I’d be one extremely sorry man.”
“So, this is the new business idea, huh? Going well, I take it?” Where in hell I found the courage to be sarcastic while choking on shame and nerves was beyond me.
“Going great! You’re my first date.”
“This isn’t a date, Lucky. Not now that I know it’s you.”
“Sure, Mr. B. Whatever you’re comfortable with.” My eyes nervously darted around the restaurant, making sure I didn’t know anyone here. I could be severely disciplined or even fired for dating my student.
“Stop calling me that, please. Call me Hayes. But just for tonight, while we’re here.” Lucky stared at me hard for a moment then smiled and tested out my name. Lord almighty, did it sound good rolling off his tongue.
“Hayes, we’re going to order some food and spend the next hour getting to know each other. Then, we’ll see.”
“See what happens next.” I couldn’t take it when he winked at me like that. I took a huge calming breath and gave myself permission to try and enjoy the next hour.
Hearts For Hire, Book 1
After one date, I realized that would never be enough…
I started Lucky Match, a dating service, as an enjoyable way to earn some extra cash. That’s how I ended up on a date with my super hot Economics Professor.
Here’s my three step plan to seduce my teacher:
Convince Hayes to fake date me.
Inform him that we were never fake dating; it was always real.
Make him fall in love with me.
How many dates will it take for Hayes to realize I’m his lucky match?
After my divorce, I decided it’s time for a change. After missing being with a man for the past twelve years of my loveless marriage, I’m finally free to make up for lost time.
I called Lucky Match to hookup with someone who looks like the sexy student I can’t stop fantasizing about. I had no idea I’d end up with the real deal.
Is a second chance at love worth risking my career and another broken heart?
Lucky Match is a gay male escort romance with an HEA. This sweet heat, teacher/student story includes college roommates, meddling brothers, fake dating, a wise aunt full of Irish wisdom, an epic karaoke battle, and a pride parade.
Raquel Riley is a native of South Florida but now calls North Carolina home. She is an avid reader and loves to travel. Most often, she writes gay romance stories with an HEA but characters of all types can be found in her books. Raquel weaves pieces of herself, her family, and her travels into every story she writes.
Stop by her author page on https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100063078438670 for exclusive updates, new releases, and excerpts of her current work in progress. You can also visit Raquel and her characters from Cooper’s Cove in her Facebook reader group Raquel Riley’s Romantics. https://www.facebook.com/groups/519550045697964/
Find her on Instagram @authorraquelriley.
Listen to playlists inspired by Raquel’s books on her YouTube channel. https://youtube.com/channel/UC7hpKcfd9eOEC80PLPmEN9w
See Raquel’s character inspiration and visual storyboards on Pintrest. @Raquel Riley
Watch Raquel’s TikTok videos and book reviews. @raquelrileyMMauthor https://vm.tiktok.com/TTPdkoQGAT/
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