Short Stories

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Lodestone

2015 Daily Dose | Never Too Late

Alchemy “Al” Jones is an Earth Elemental with an affinity for metals. He uses his covert abilities doing freelance planetary mineral surveys. He’s spent decades as a loner, avoiding planets, Company drones, other Paras, and emotional entanglements. When he’s stranded on a station with a ship that needs more repairs than he has funds to cover, he’s got a decision to make. And then he meets Nick, who turns his world inside out.

Nicholai Royce is an Earth Elemental with an affinity for gems, and he’s on a mission. Paras are a maligned minority, and Nick’s in the sector to look over unclaimed planets that could be suitable for a Para home world. But he’s got a problem—his ship barely reached the station, and he doesn’t have the cash to get it out of dry dock. Then he meets Al, who is absolutely not the kind of person Nick should be falling for. On the other hand, Al’s scheme could get them back into space—or could get them killed.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Daily Dose package "Never Too Late."

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Love Has No Expiration

2015 Daily Dose | Never Too Late

There’s more to life than work, and love has no expiration, even for those approaching their forty-fifth birthday.

Daniel Richards is a private chef in New York City who has committed over a decade to his skills and passion. He has carved out a name for himself in the industry and has bookings for parties and dinners months in advance. Now that he’s in his midforties, however, he’s come to the realization that he’s lonely and desperate for companionship. Two days before Valentine’s Day, he meets Keith Maxwell at a farmer’s market and can’t keep the much younger man out of his thoughts. Keith is eager and willing to take a chance with someone older, but Daniel’s reluctance stops Keith’s every attempt. Worried his career will suffer if he dedicates time to a serious romance, or that Keith won’t be satisfied with someone so much older, Daniel nearly thwarts his own attempts at finding happiness.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Daily Dose package "Never Too Late."

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Mens Rea

2015 Daily Dose | Never Too Late

James Carter is forty-five and has been a police officer most of his life. He married young, lost her young, and his life revolved around his work and his son. Young is a recurring theme in his life, he thinks, when he meets the considerably younger AUSA Derek Moore on a case and finds himself ruled by the whims of his heart.

The road to love between a hotshot lawyer and a veteran cop was never going to be smooth, not in the real world, but there are criminals, misunderstandings, and a lack of communication standing in their way too. Both are so stubborn and convinced their interest is one-sided that it takes a murder case, exhaustion, and an adjournment for them to get their act together. They move fast after that, but they both know there’s no guarantee for tomorrow.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Daily Dose package "Never Too Late."

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Out in the Blue

2015 Daily Dose | Never Too Late

At forty-five, Jared Tailler suddenly feels old. When his employer grounds him, he starts thinking in terms of measuring his coffin. Well, not quite, but he’s creakier and hairier than he was ten years ago, and his closest relationship is the one he has with his frequent-flyer card.

It’s time to get out there.

On the first day of a five-day hiking trip, he meets Finley Macrae, a younger, seemingly brighter man. As they inch together in halting steps, Jared learns he’s not the only one lost out in the blue—Fin’s good cheer hides a turbulence deeper than Jared’s midlife crisis. Maybe together they can find the trail to happiness.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Daily Dose package "Never Too Late."

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Phoenix

2015 Daily Dose | Never Too Late

First a soldier and then a diplomat, Juberi now spends his solitary days on a single ambition: trying to resurrect the phoenix, which has been extinct for centuries. He’s not pleased when he is obligated to attend a public ceremony in memory of an elderly friend and former colleague. But at the ceremony, Juberi meets the friend’s beguiling son, Desen. Despite being from a markedly different culture, Desen has much to offer. But after decades of denying his own desires, Juberi fears there is no alchemy that will reopen him to love.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Daily Dose package "Never Too Late."

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Piano Man

2015 Daily Dose | Never Too Late

Approaching fifty, Graham is tired of the gay club scene. He dreams of a venue where he won’t be judged on his age and looks. He and his friend Mike decide to fill the gap in the market by opening the Midnight Lounge, a gay-friendly piano bar in the heart of London’s Soho. After several unsuccessful auditions, Graham finds the perfect pianist for the bar. Adam Turner is young, handsome, and talented, and there’s a spark of attraction between him and Graham, but Graham’s split with his ex has left him feeling old and unattractive. He believes Adam is just stringing him along—a belief that seems validated when Adam kisses him, then claims he’s made a big mistake. Adam wants Graham, but first he’ll have to prove to Graham that age is no barrier to finding love.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Daily Dose package "Never Too Late."

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Takes Two to Tango

2015 Daily Dose | Never Too Late

Established TV personality Daniel Josephs only agrees to take part in a reality dancing show in London to lose weight. Single, successful, and (mostly) sorted, he’s already happy, even if he secretly wishes his love life was as rewarding as his professional one. Young athlete Will Smith, who gave up the earldom he inherited to pursue Olympic dreams, is far from happy—not to mention not interested in someone as old as Daniel. But when Will’s past catches up with him, it’s Daniel who helps him piece his life back together.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Daily Dose package "Never Too Late."

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Take Your Best Shot by Starlight

2015 Daily Dose | Never Too Late

Halden Blake was a good soldier and a good man. He never intended to be a hero, and he definitely never intended the events that landed him in intergalactic politics. Now, three presidential terms later, Halden must decide if running for office again is worth five more years of putting his own life on hold.

Isaac Knox has been President Blake’s public liaison from the start, an ally and friend through difficult times. Halden has always carefully resisted thoughts of more, and Isaac has never given any hint of returning his guarded attraction. But when Halden finds himself struggling with questions about his own future, Isaac makes a surprising offer that could change everything.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Daily Dose package "Never Too Late."

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Twenty-Five Years

2015 Daily Dose | Never Too Late

Sometimes letting go of an obsession leads to something better instead.

A twenty-five-year high school reunion is Conrad’s chance to finally come face-to-face with his unrequited love, Todd. Instead, he discovers he himself was an unrequited love for Gary, his friend from the chess club. When the two return to their old gym locker room, long-lost friends at last become found loves. As for Todd, well, let’s just say that karma can be quite the bitch.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Daily Dose package "Never Too Late."

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Up to Boil

2015 Daily Dose | Never Too Late

When plumber and builder Jordan Novotny goes to take a look at the home of the town’s openly gay, recently dumped librarian, he doesn’t expect to find anything other than a falling-apart old house and a water heater in need of repair. Instead, he finds an older man in need of some TLC and a new circle of friends after his ex tossed him aside for a newer model. Stephen might be attracted to Jordan, but he thinks the young man is exactly that—too young. It takes Jordan’s family interfering and a bit of a mishap to make them see that it’s never too late to find a new love, and that age is just a number. All that matters is compatibility and the courage to take a chance.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Daily Dose package "Never Too Late."

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A Most Unusual Courtship

The Mage and the Leathersmith

2nd Edition

Prequel to A Most Unusual Wedding

Gerald Smithson, master leathersmith, has ample reason to distrust mages. He doesn't take their commissions and steers clear of them wherever possible. When Lord Leo Harris tries to hire him, Gerald sends the mage packing. Unfortunately, the simple act of Leo entering his shop brings Gerald to the attention of a Dark mage who kidnaps him as a chance to get to Leo. Now Leo must not only rescue Gerald, but find a way to win his heart. It will be an unusual courtship, to say the least.

1st Edition published by Torquere Press, 2012.

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Prequel to Final Encore

Tires flying over the interstate, college student Ian Dillon can’t get out of Greenville, SC quickly enough. As he watches his entire life fading away in his rearview mirror, his thoughts are only of his lover, Todd, and the memories of their time together, now completely shattered by Todd’s incomprehensible betrayal. His mind still reeling, Ian drives through the night until a split second decision guides him to Nashville, Tennessee. Everything will be better there. It has to be!

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A Night Never Forgotten

2014 Advent Calendar | Celebrate!

After a one night whirlwind romance, Braylon returns to Toronto on the first of December every year in the hopes of seeing the man of his dreams again. Instead Braylon meets a strange man who tells him Christmas is a magical time, and one never knows what unexpected gifts he’ll receive. Braylon takes a chance and makes a Christmas wish, but instead of getting what he wants, he contracts an infection, leaving him dependent on dialysis and unable to make the journey the following year. But the stranger just might be right; an unexpected gift may be the miracle Braylon needs most of all.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2014 Advent Calendar package "Celebrate!".

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A Snowman Made of Sand

2014 Advent Calendar | Celebrate!

Last year in England, Australian Ethan Harvey not only met his “perfect” man in Tristan Lewin-Jones, Ethan shared a wonderful Christmas with Tristan’s “perfect” family—an ideal British holiday full of genteel good cheer and all the traditional trimmings.

Now Tris and Ethan are living in Sydney, and Tris wants the quintessential Australian beach Christmas, with sun, sand, surf, seafood… and the Harveys. But Ethan didn’t mention the Harveys are politically incorrect, rude, crude, and loud. He worries his family will drive Tris away. Giving Tris the perfect beach Christmas with the imperfect Harveys is going to take a holiday miracle.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2014 Advent Calendar package "Celebrate!".

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Best Laid Plans

2014 Advent Calendar | Celebrate!

George is an anxious, neurotic mess. The only thing that calms him is his partner of ten years, Scott. So despite how nervous it makes George to travel alone, he decides to go to Europe, where Scott has been working for two months, to visit for Christmas. George plans a day on his own in London before traveling to Paris, where Scott is staying. But on George’s day of sightseeing and shopping, everything goes wrong, from a misunderstanding with the hotel concierge to getting lost in Harrods. All George wants is to be with his partner for Christmas, but he’s not sure he’ll survive long enough for that to happen.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2014 Advent Calendar package "Celebrate!".

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Business or Pleasure

2014 Advent Calendar | Celebrate!

When American Ian lands a secretarial job in the United Kingdom, he thinks he’s set for life. Admittedly, he’s still a bachelor living in a small apartment and working for a complete jackass, but other than that, his life is everything he ever hoped for in an enticing city full of beautiful people. When Alistair Security is robbed during the Christmas Fundraiser, the last thing Ian expects is to end up locked in with his boss, Alex Alistair, and to realize he might have mistaken his resentment for something else. The two men find common ground throughout the night, but when morning comes and the news hits the headlines, their connection will be tested. Ian might find himself at the start of a hot office romance—or he’ll spend the holidays browsing the classifieds.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2014 Advent Calendar package "Celebrate!".

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Coming of Age

2014 Advent Calendar | Celebrate!

Akiyoshi ‘Aero’ Kurokuma, author of the wildly popular manga, Ecos, lost his assistant when his best friend retired. After Aero collapses from exhaustion four years later, he is forced to run a contest for an assistant. Placing impossible rules on the contest, Aero is sure no one can win. But a winner emerges: a young man from America, Daniel Beck. The first time he lays eyes on Daniel, Aero realizes he’ll have a hard time hiding his attraction. Daniel is a perfect assistant, but it doesn’t help Aero see past the twenty-year age difference between them. It will take all of Daniel's charm and the prayers offered at the shrine to make Aero take a chance on the romance they both want.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2014 Advent Calendar package "Celebrate!".

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King of Me

2014 Advent Calendar | Celebrate!

Cast out of his clan of shifters and with no family of his own, Anton Cedwell wants nothing more than to be accepted by his partner Sean’s family when the two of them visit over Christmas. But Sean’s powerful father, Flavius, isn’t happy his son chose a shifter as a mate, and Sean is hiding secrets from Anton. When Sean is attacked by rival weres, Anton hopes Sean’s family will finally see the depth of his commitment and how far he’s willing to go to protect the man he loves.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2014 Advent Calendar package "Celebrate!".

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