Short Stories

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Valentine Shower

A Valentine Rainbow

For Reuben, numbers are everything people are not: rational, predictable, and soothing. Outside of this family, his boss, Terry, is the one person he feels connected with. In the years they’ve worked together, listening to Terry’s jokes and stories over coffee has become a reliable part of his routine. But he’s missed having family nearby since his parents retired to Florida, and figures he’ll need a woman to correct the problem. He’s hurt and confused when Terry not only refuses to help, but announces he won’t be coming around much anymore. It’s up to Reuben’s no-nonsense sister Yaffa and his therapist, Dr. Greenberg, to help him understand Terry’s feelings—and his own.

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Campfire Confessions

A Valentine Rainbow

Best friends Case and Mitchell are so inseparable everyone assumes they’re dating. Case’s dad even buys them a joint gift—a camping trip. Even though Case hates the woods, he wants Mitchell to have a good time. When they discover the trip is a couples’ retreat, they have to fake a relationship. Case can’t understand why the trust and intimacy exercises the other couples struggle with come so naturally to them. After all, they’re not really boyfriends….

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Come Clean

A Valentine Rainbow

Peru Cabral, the youngest of five brothers, has just come out to his family. Lawson Todd has returned to his small hometown in disgrace after losing his corporate advertising job. When Peru and Lawson spot each other at the family Laundromat where Lawson works, the attraction between them is undeniable. But the fears, insecurities, and false fronts both men are hiding behind might doom the relationship before it begins—unless the brothers Cabral step in.

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The Accidental Cupid

A Valentine Rainbow

While performing as Cupid on Valentine’s Day, Josh has the unpleasant task of delivering a break-up message to Dallas from his girlfriend, Jess. Jess is convinced Dallas is gay, and when Josh tries to comfort him, he finds she may very well be right. When Dallas’s best friend Austin arrives, it’s up to Josh to show both young men the love and acceptance they’ve always had in each other.

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Blue Valentine Blues

A Valentine Rainbow

When Josh put a blue valentine in the class box for Bobby Prentice in fifth grade, he just wanted to show how much he appreciated his best friend. Years later, both the ridicule he suffered and his unrequited feelings for Bobby have followed him to the university where they both teach. Bobby would like to say many things to his friend, but he doesn’t know if he can find the courage in himself that he admires in Josh.

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At the Under the Table host club, Valentine’s Day means one thing: cash. Neglected housewives, newly ex-girlfriends, and lovelorn thirtysomethings pay for the attention of handsome men. Shy bartender Jem has always wanted to be a host, and when the club’s owner, Miss Rye, accepts a contract from a MensLove Convention, Jem volunteers to flirt and make out with another host for the ladies’ entertainment. Bailey, an older man who’s had his eye on Jem, convinces Miss Rye to let him be Jem’s partner, and everyone gets more than they expected—especially Jem and Bailey.

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Alaska

2013 Advent Calendar | Heartwarming

Best friends Scott and Marco meet on a rooftop on Christmas Eve, each temporarily escaping from his difficult home life. With no gift to share, Marco instead promises to someday rescue Scott and take him to Alaska. As the years pass, they meet—first by design, then by chance—on occasional Christmas Eves, only to find life growing increasingly difficult. They treasure the few moments they have together, but will they ever reach Alaska?


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2013 Advent Calendar package "Heartwarming."

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Heart of the Pines

2013 Advent Calendar | Heartwarming

Christmas is the worst time of the year to find yourself alone. Chris Moss, owner of a tree farm, knows this down to his bones as he makes his way through his first holiday season after losing his wife to cancer. When Wade Hart, an annual customer at the farm, visits, they find common ground: Wade lost his own longtime lover to a parting of ways and is lonely too. The constant, gentle companionship provides fertile soil for an attraction neither expects, but nurturing a new relationship is a tough proposition. With the encouragement of family and friends, Chris and Wade may yet find that a second love later in life can be just as fulfilling as the first.


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2013 Advent Calendar package "Heartwarming".

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Holly and Oak

2013 Advent Calendar | Heartwarming

Twice each year, during the solstice, the Holly King battles the Oak King as Nature takes its course. This year, however, Holly concedes defeat far too easily. Curious about his brother's haste, Oak nags his brother into revealing his secret: a new relationship with a human. While loving a mortal is not taboo, Oak fears his brother's love may run too deep. But despite knowing he risks his heart, Holly is determined to share warmth with his Sergio for as long as the world will allow, if not beyond.


A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2013 Advent Calendar package "Heartwarming".

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Diving In

2013 Daily Dose | Make a Play

Being the pool boy makes it easy for Max Jansen to ogle his long-time crush, water polo player Everett Caldwell. Never mind the fact that Max owns the company and is overqualified for the task of monitoring chlorine and cleaning skimmers. He’s just happy to watch his unattainable dream play—until one day Everett invites him over and suddenly Max is his platonic plus-one for everything from movie nights to racy industry parties. Then Max learns the one-time Olympian isn’t as straight as everyone assumes, and he isn’t sure how long he can hold out before his crush grows much deeper.

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Pouring a Brick

2013 Daily Dose | Make a Play

High-energy Spence joins a Brazilian jiu-jitsu school looking for adventure. Will is already a calm, advanced practitioner of the gentle art when they meet, and he takes the new student under his wing. After training for a tournament, Spence realizes that relaxing into the flow works great for channeling his energy at competitions and for life in general, but when it comes to taking a chance on Will, pushing the boundaries may be the only way to take their friendship to the next level.

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Sage Advice

2013 Daily Dose | Make a Play

Piper is a ballet dancer who has lost his footing—literally. Now his dreams are shot and he’s depressed enough that his best friend, Sage, lures him into a night of drinking and games. Except the game is truth or dare, and they end up doing less drinking and more confessing. Hidden secrets spill out and brazen acts draw the two men closer as they discover what really matters: if they’re winners or losers in the game of love.

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The Gig

The Bones Series
Speechless

Sequel to Speechless
A Bones/Speechless Crossover

An accident in Drew Clifton's past left the former novelist with aphasia, unable to communicate through either speech or writing. Through sheer strength of will, he built a quiet but lonely life for himself. But now he’s fallen in love with Travis Miller.

Travis has his own issues—a permanent eye injury and unemployment. But he’s determined to help Drew find ways to engage and succeed again in the wider world, and a guitar-playing gig at a local coffeehouse seems like a good start.

Dylan Warner and Chris Nock happen to be in the audience that evening, and they have a few niggling problems of their own. Perhaps a chance meeting will provide solutions that might benefit all of them.

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A Great Miracle Happened There

2012 Advent Calendar | Evergreen

This winter, Jude Bloch can't decide what bothers him more—the crowds of people or the holiday revelry. Even meeting handsome chef Mac Appel fails to cheer him up because Jude knows the most he could hope for is a one-night stand. But one night turns into two and then more. Maybe Mac can bring some warmth into Jude's holiday season.

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Aunt Dee Dee’s Holiday Check

2012 Advent Calendar | Evergreen

After his Aunt Dee Dee sends him a windfall, Ethan decides to bail on the family holiday drama and go on a college skiing trip instead. Then a reservation snafu lands him in the same room as Henry, another student on the trip, and Ethan stumbles onto a bonus present of another kind: one that could last through Christmas and beyond.

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Lord of Misrule

2012 Advent Calendar | Evergreen

The Yule festival of Twelfth Night is a time when servants are the masters and vice versa, and tension and humor fill the air. Dan and his partner, Taj, have busy lives even without their duties as members of the Society for Creative Anachronism. When Taj is selected to coordinate the holiday activities and assigned the title Lord of Misrule, it encroaches on their time as a couple—until they negotiate their way to a happy holiday.

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Rudolph

By
2012 Advent Calendar | Evergreen

Crotchety and cranky Rudy—aka Santa—is in a foul mood every Christmas season. He talks to lots of children and even more parents but not with guys looking for dates. Only when his best helper makes him a very special gift does he meet someone to his liking. Kind of. Because that someone is made of flour and spices—and to impress him, Rudy seriously has to work on his seduction skills.

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