Today I am so pleased to welcome Ana Ashley to Joyfully Jay. Ana has come to talk to us about her latest release, Antagonist. She has also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving her a big welcome!
I motion for Harrison to follow me. I grab the keys to the studio as we pass the kitchen and walk out of the house.
“Will they be okay?” Harrison asks.
“Yeah, we’re close enough, and George knows how to get me. Honestly, Rosie isn’t dangerous.”
“I know, I’m sorry. It’s just…it’s a snake, you know?”
I smile because I do know. It’s not the standard house pet, that’s for sure.
“Where are you taking me?” he asks.
I want to joke about taking him to my sex dungeon or something equally as ridiculous, but maybe we can take this chance to talk and clear the air between us.
The studio is full of boxes, but the apartment upstairs still has Arlo’s stuff, so this has to do. I point to the high stool by the workbench and Harrison sits.
I pull the other one out from under the bench and sit facing Harrison.
“So,” we both say at the same time.
He smiles and gestures for me to go first.
“I’m going to take a lucky guess that coming here wasn’t Megan’s idea,” I say.
“She didn’t exactly put up a fight, and we did promise they could have a playdate,” he says.
“But you’re right. Look, Fletcher, I have a lot to apologize for.” He stands and walks around the workbench. “I don’t know where to start.”
“Maybe from the moment you ran off after we kissed. I mean, you don’t need to apologize for that. I just…want to know why you ran?”
Harrison paces the space between the bench and the door.
“I don’t know. It was unexpected. Good,” he says, finally looking at me with those deep eyes, “but unexpected. I wasn’t prepared for the stuff you made me feel.”
I swallow and slowly stand. “How did I make you feel?”
We’re facing each other. There’s enough room in the studio that if we wanted to avoid each other, we could. But here we are, standing only a few feet apart.
“You made me feel…I felt like…”
“Like what?” I whisper, taking another step forward.
I’m trying my best to keep my breathing normal, but it’s hard because I’m hanging on every word Harrison isn’t saying. Another thing that’s hard is my fucking dick.
Please don’t look down. Please don’t look down, I pray.
“Like what, Harrison?”
“Like…” He runs his nails over the wooden grooves of the bench. “As if in that moment, there was no one else in the world for you but me.”
He sounds so unsure of himself. The Harrison I know holds himself high and with confidence. Unless…this is the Harrison I met at the bachelor auction. The vulnerable Harrison that almost stopped breathing when I placed my hand over his chest.
I need to tell him I’m not the person he thinks I am. I want him to see me, the real me.
Harrison takes a step forward and raises his hand slowly to my face.
“Your hair is impossibly soft,” he says.
“I can tell you which conditioner I use.”
He smiles. “You smell like the rainforest.”
“I only use regular soap because I spend too much time covered in paint to bother using the good stuff.”
He shakes his head. “You have the most beautiful eyes I’ve ever seen.
“They’re just bl—”
“Shut up, Fletcher.”
Harrison pulls me forward and slams his lips against mine. It takes me a hair’s breadth to give in to him and less than that to realize I have no choice. Not because he wouldn’t stop, but because it’s hopeless to think I’ll ever refuse anything from this man.
Breathing becomes overrated as he seeks entry into my mouth. I gasp, just like he does, but we don’t stop kissing. He picks me up and carries me two steps until I feel the workbench under my ass.
His arms are tight around my waist, and I take advantage of the increased height and not having to hold myself up to run my hands over every single inch of Harrison’s skin I can get to.
“Harrison,” I say between breaths as he bites my lower lip.
“Don’t talk. Please, don’t talk.”
As if I could even construct a coherent thought, let alone voice it.
Harrison’s lips move from my mouth on an expedition. He kisses and licks my chin, neck, and collarbone. I swear he smells my hair, but I can’t be sure because I can’t think.
All I can do is hold on to him and enjoy the ride.
When it’s obvious there’s too much fabric in the way, he pushes me down until my back is on the bench. He runs a hand down from my chest until he’s cupping my erection.
“Fuck,” I gasp. “Please tell me you’re going to do something about it before I combust.”
I sit up so quickly I bump my head on Harrison’s.
I jump from the bench and run to the window, seeing George walking over with my phone in his hand.
Harrison seems frozen in place while I scramble to tie my messy hair up. Thank god I always keep a hair tie in my pocket.
I give Harrison a quick glance, and he nods, so I open the studio door.
“What’s up, buddy?”
George stares at me. “Your face is all red.”
“Your dad had to move something really heavy,” Harrison says, fortunately saving me from having to make up an excuse because my sexed-up brain isn’t in the right gear.
Dads of Stillwater, Book 1
One artist. One attorney. Two single dads.
Meeting at a bachelor auction for charity had trouble written all over it as far as I was concerned, especially when the guy that won the bid for me seemed to be after only one thing…a good time between the sheets.
Refusing Fletcher’s advances was easy the first time round. After all, we weren’t meant to see each other again.
Except I’ve just moved to Stillwater where Fletcher lives.
Except both our kids are in the same class.
Now the kids are fighting and I’m ready to throw my own punches.
If only Fletcher wasn’t as goddamn irresistible as he is irritating.
When the fight moves from the playground to the bedroom, who will come out on top?
Antagonist is book 1 in Ana Ashley’s new series, Dads of Stillwater.
Single dads, sassy kids, Ana’s usual cast of intriguing secondary characters, Stillwater has it all.
Ana was born in Portugal but has lived in the United Kingdom for so long, even her friends sometimes doubt if she really is Portuguese.
Ana Ashley writes sweet and steamy gay romance set in America, often in small towns where everyone knows everyone. Coming from a small town herself, she knows all about meddling families, nosy neighbors and that community spirit that comes from knowing people all your life.
You can find out more about Ana and her works-in-progress by joining her Newsletter. To sign up visit Ana’s website anawritesmm.com.
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To celebrate the release of Antagonist, Ana is giving 2 e-copies of the winner’s choice of any book from her Backlist! Enter the Rafflecopter giveaway for your chance to win!
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