The 12th of Never – FREE BLOG STORY!! Chapter 8

12th of Never

 

The 12th of Never by A.J. Llewellyn

Cover Art: Sara York

Link to chapters 1-7: http://www.ajllewellyn.com/site/2014/07/10/2260/

 

Chapter 8

“Most people go through life dreading they’ll have a traumatic experience. Freaks were born with their trauma. They’ve already passed their test in life. They’re aristocrats.”

–          Photographer Diane Arbus

Johnny hurried to visit a distraught and feverish Julia in the Staro-Ekaterininskii Hospital with Argo, the strongman, who initially hailed from Russia but now lived in England, and Rosalia Griffray, the circus fat lady, who was very nice, but spoke only Spanish and Portuguese. They were accompanied by Mr. T.A. Naumann, the show’s one-legged castanet player, who didn’t seem to speak any language but clapped his ever-present castanets in his hands. A lot.

Julia had been to the hospital by horse and cart, but he and Argo had trouble finding anyone they could speak to. It took Johnny several long minutes to realize he was in Moscow, Russia, and if memory served him right, Julia would soon give birth to a baby boy who would die within two days. She herself would die within a couple of days of losing her baby. Her husband would then embalm her and her child and prop them up in a glass cabinet and ferry them around the world as dead circus freaks.

It would take a century and a half for a kind woman in Julia’s native Mexico to fight for the poor woman’s disintegrating remains to be removed from public display/ridicule and given a proper burial.

Johnny April hoped to change all that and prevent her death, but he was allowed nowhere near her and the complicated birth resulted in her baby’s death.

Why am I going back in time if I can’t do anything to alter the course of history?

A few more of Julia’s fellow circus friends showed up at the hospital, some of them sporting red-rimmed eyes as they sat beside Johnny, all of them outcasts. He was surprised when Argo, the strongman, bawled like a little kid when news came from a kindly nurse that Julia had developed a strange fever and was unconscious.

“I’ll give you any news I can,” she told Argo and the only other Russian-speaking performer,  Vladimir the half-man, half-leopard who really didn’t look like one without all the smoke and mirrors of a circus show. He just looked like a guy with a bad hair problem who kept one side of his body smooth and the other in its natural state. He walked with a large cat’s grace though. Vladimir translated to the others huddled on the lonely bench in the waiting room. It was strange to see a Moscow hospital way back in the day with candle-lit sconces on the walls and a strange smell of something earthy on the air.

Johnny and the others sat, isolated in the chilly waiting room.

I think I’ve always been an outcast. Just like Argo and the others. Where is Mike? Johnny’s head hurt and he was certain he could feel a tender spot on the back of his head. Not touching it stopped him from descending into complete and utter panic.

“Let’s get some food,” Argo said, nudging Johnny in the ribs. Argo didn’t know his own strength and sent Johnny scuttling to the floor. His head hit the wall and it was the last thing Johnny remembered…

****

When Johnny awoke, he was starving and when he slowly looked around, he wasn’t in Moscow, he was in a bed. A nice, warm bed, in the sun. Relief washed over him like a tidal wave. He was in Mike’s bed in Ventura. Man, what a wild dream he’d been having. He reached out for Mike, but the space beside him was empty. The sun baked the white sheets, making the throb in Johnny’s head a bit worse. He craved the warmth, and the light, but he felt like shit.

“Ah, you’re awake,” a voice said, an amused lilt to it. Johnny tilted his head and looked to the foot of the bed.

“Mike,” he croaked.

Mike looked instantly concerned. “I have no idea what the hell you did to yourself, but something or someone caved I the back of your head. You have seventeen stitches and you’ve been asleep for a day and a half.”

“Sorry,” was all Johnny could think of in response.

“Don’t apologize. Do you remember anything that happened?” Mike leaned over to him, brushing a hair from Johnny’s eyes. He couldn’t remember anyone being so tender with him, ever. Then he remembered Julia Pastrana and her lonely life. She was far from him now. Far from life, from pain. She had been given a proper burial finally. He wanted to visit her, to honor her.

I wish I could have saved her.

“What do you remember?” Mike prompted again.

“Not much.” I remember sitting with the one-legged castanet player, and Argo the strongman, and the fat lady. Now what was her name again? Rosalia! We waited for news. People call them freaks but they were the kindest I’ve ever met. Apart from you. “I dreamed of you,” he said.

Mike smiled. “Are you hungry?”

Johnny hesitated. Admitting to hunger had brought him nothing but pain and humiliation all his life, but he could no longer stand the pain he was in. He needed to eat. When was his last meal? The coffee and toast he’d swallowed the morning all of this weirdness started seemed like months ago.

“Yeah,” he said, finally. “Very.”

“Good. Because it’s Valentine’s Day.” Mike reached across the bed to the bureau beside it and retrieved a takeout menu from it. Johnny had seen enough of them billowing across the beaches he’d visited over the years. Strangers left them, but the April family never spent money on things like takeout.

Suddenly he was hungrier than ever.

“I thought we’d order Chinese, watch a couple of movies I downloaded from Netflix and” —Mike’s expression turned impish—“make love for the rest of the day.

Johnny’s breath caught in his throat. He’d never spent a day doing any of these things and he wished and hoped and prayed God wouldn’t interrupt this dream or whatever it was and whisk him away before it all happened.

“Sounds like a plan,” he said, sounding confident and excited, surprising them both.

Mike gave him a lopsided grin. “You want to take a look?” He passed the menu over.

“Nope. I trust you.”

“Awesome. I’ll be right back.”

Johnny dozed, the pain ebbing and flowing. He would drift off, then a sharp stab of pain would awaken him. A naked Mike paced the hallway outside the bedroom ordering what sounded like a mountain of food. Johnny began to drool at the notion of honey walnut shrimp, beef with black bean sauce, fragrant chicken and vegetables. He wondered what that was and why it had to be called fragrant.  Mike sat beside him on the bed, flicking around channels with his remote.

“I thought we’d watch Shelter,” he said as Johnny huddled closer and put his head in Mike’s lap. Mike stroked Johnny’s face and shoulders, invoking both peace and a pang of carnal thrill through Johnny’s body. “You said you dreamed about me.” Mike muted the TV. “”What did you dream?”

Johnny didn’t want to tell him. How could he say, “We were circus freaks together.” He couldn’t. Just couldn’t. Nothing could spoil the mood.

“I don’t remember. My head hurts really bad. But you were there and you made me feel better.”

“Aw.” Mike squeezed his shoulder. “You wanna cup of coffee?”

“Yes, please.” Johnny’s whole body tingled with pleasure as mike stroked his back, letting his fingers linger along Johnny’s butt crack. How did I get naked? The thought tumbled around his head like loose change. He fell asleep somehow, waking up again to Mike coming to the bed with a laden tray.

“Sorry it took so long. I have to call the restaurant twice.”

“You did? How long has it been?”

“An hour. You keep falling asleep.” Mike gave him a gentle smile and put the tray on the bed. He then tossed some pillows from the closet against the headboard and as Johnny sat up, he handed him a cup of coffee. Johnny noticed the aspirin bottle and shook out a couple of pills into his hand and gulped them.

Mike seemed to enjoy watching Johnny pick up each takeout carton and inhaling the fragrance of each dish. With each passing the second the creepy smell of the Russian hospital receded. Johnny learned that fragrant vegetables were prepared with a pungent mix of spices; cumin, red pepper, and ginger. He helped himself to a little of everything, savoring each bite as though it were his last.

“You eat like you’ve never eaten Chinese food before,” Mike remarked, plucking at a piece of shrimp from his own plate.

“I haven’t.” Johnny shrugged.

Mike stared at him, incredulous. “Are you kidding?”

“Oh, Mike. I never joke about food.” He pointed at one of the cartons with his fork. Johnny wasn’t talented with chopsticks. He was barely adequate with a fork. “I don’t know what I want first, you or one of these cool-looking toasties.”

Mike laughed. “Those are appetizers and they’re good. They have shrimp in them.”

“I’ll compromise then. One of these and then I want you.”

Mike seemed so happy. He bounced off the bed as Johnny chewed the billowy fried pocket of deliciousness and moved the tray to the floor.

Johnny was still hungry and licked his fork as Mike wrestled it from his fingers.

“Let me,” Mike said. He knelt on the bed beside Johnny and gave him the kind of toe curling kiss that almost made Johnny come…Mike put his hand to Johnny’s cock and grabbed it, sucking it into his mouth. Mike was still kneeling when Johnny moved to lie across the bed and give Mike an oral workout he would not forget in a hurry. Mike groaned when Johnny squeezed his balls with his left hand, using them as leverage to get him into his mouth. They bounced against Johnny’s chin. He came hard and fast, grabbing Mike’s head as his cock erupted down Mike’s throat.

Mike took everything Johnny had to give him. Mike seemed reluctant to release Johnny from his hot, wet lips.

Johnny took Mike’s face in his hands and kissed him. Their kisses intensified, hot, and thirsty passion. “My turn,” Johnny whispered into Mike’s mouth. “Give me that ass. It’s mine.”

Mike’s brows shot up. Yeah, Johnny was surprised too. He’d never been this aggressive. Mike seemed turned on, judging by his raging erection and lay back, opening his legs wider as Johnny went berserk licking and kissing his chest. His tongue reached Mike’s sacred space between balls and cock and went wild. He loved the way Mike flailed around the bed…

“Oh suck my ass, Johnny,” he implored. “Suck me hard, baby.”

Johnny took his time, enjoying the sounds Mike made as Johnny sucked and licked him…fuck he tasted good and hot. Mike’s feet bounced on Johnny’s shoulders and Johnny held his ass in his hands…afraid he would come before Johnny could get what he wanted. Too late. Mike erupted in a searing tide, wave after wave of pleasure coursing through them both. Johnny had never experienced anything so dramatic and so damned exciting. He released Mike’s cock with a pop and looked up.

Holy crap. Johnny was no longer on the bed with Mike. He was in a hospital bed strapped down, a piece of wood in his mouth. Johnny screamed, but it was a long silent one. A dark shadow fell over his face. Johnny looked up, tears blurring his vision.

Oh, God no. Not him. Of all people…

 

 

 

Enslaved Valentine BDSM Voyages Book 1 is here!!!

Displaying Enslaved Valentine BDSM Voyages Book 1.jpg

Ensalved Valentine by A.J. Llewellyn and D.J. Manly – purchase link: http://www.stiffrainpress.com/m8/58-978-1-62344-067-1–ensalved-valentine-by-a-j-llewellyn-and-d-j-manly.html
BDSM Voyages, Book One
 
Hamish never thought he’d want to be dominated until Paul Murdock showed up with the key to his padlocked heart.
It’s been said that all a submissive can do when they are bound and tied, is feel. For former boxer Hamish Murdock, all he’s ever done is feel. Feel bad that is. He never took pleasure from pain until meeting Paul, whom he thinks of as his tikkun, the man who rights all the wrongs in his life. For Paul and Hamish, pain is pleasure in their most secret, private moments. On the outside, they are a normal, devoted couple with successful businesses…
But deep down, theirs is a strict D/s relationship that’s about to be tested in their first BDSM vacation. Paul’s chosen a secret destination for Hamish in their Valentine’s Day long-weekend. Can Hamish handle what Paul has in mind? More importantly, will Paul be able to keep his secret and keep his man under control? Or will their first BDSM voyage be their last?

WARNING: EXPLICIT CONTENT. YOU MUST BE AT LEAST 18 YEARS OF AGE TO PURCHASE THIS TITLE.

  
PRICE: $2.99
RELEASE DATE: 02/11/15
ISBN: 978-1-62344-067-1
CATEGORY: Erotic Literature, Gay Fiction, BDSM, Love Story
ELEMENTS:  Adult Content, Adult Language, Explicit Description of Sexual Intimacy, Violence, Anal Sex, Oral Sex, Group Sex/Orgy, BDSM, Master/slave relationship.
LENGTH: 23,069
FORMAT: E-BOOK  
Purchase Kink, er, Link: http://www.stiffrainpress.com/m8/58-978-1-62344-067-1–ensalved-valentine-by-a-j-llewellyn-and-d-j-manly.html

 

Guest Blog: ANDREW Q. GORDON – Enter the Draw to WIN!!

Displaying First Love BT Banner.jpg

Hey gang! The amazing and uber-talented ANDREW Q.GORDON is here talking about his gorgeous new book, FIRST LOVE!

Not only that, there are prizes, oh yes! Prizes galore! Check out these goodies and enter the rafflecopter below!

GIVEAWAY DETAILS:  

Andrew Q. Gordon is giving away the following: –     

$15 DSP Gift Card –     

An E-copy of “Third Eye” by Rick R. Reed –     

An E-copy of “Ghost” by Carole Cummings –      A

n E-copy of a book by J. TullosHennig  

Contest Begins: 27th January, 2015 Contest Ends:9th February, 2015

Take it away Andrew!

Thanks for having me today, AJ.

First Love has its origin in what was basically one sentence in The Last Grand Master. At one point Farrell tells Prince Peter of Belsport in passing about his first love. It was ten years before the opening of The Last Grand Master and Farrell’s mother—Queen Zenora—and teacher—Heminaltose—were still alive.

First Love not only shows what Farrell was like before the war began, it also let’s me show his mother and teacher, through his eyes.

Of all the characters in the series, Farrell is naturally the most fleshed out. The story is through his eyes. But what of the secondary characters?  The Champion of the Gods series is well over 2 million words long. Much of that is filler and background that I wrote to flesh out the story that will never see the light of a Kindle. Writing it, however, made it easier to write the entire story.

One of the characters we meet in First Love is Heminaltose—Grand Master Heminaltose to be exact. When The Champion of the Gods begins with The Last Grand Master, Heminaltose is dead. He died at Yar-del, along with Queen Zenora so we only get bits and pieces of him and his personality during the books.

Heminaltose was Farrell’s first and most important teacher and helped shape his student’s character. He considered the latter task his most important. As the son of both Queen Zenora and Meglar, Heminaltose kept a close watch on Farrell. Any sign his student might turn out like his father would require Heminaltose to take swift action to neutralize this threat. Always mindful he might need to kill his student, Heminaltose maintained as much distance as he could with Farrell.

Heminaltose was over a thousand years old when he died, many considered him the greatest wizard of his time. By the time Heminaltose was born, Grand Master Kel had been gone for over a thousand years. No one saw him die, but no one saw him again after he abdicated the throne of Yar-del. A contemporary of Kel’s, Grand Master Beatrice, taught Heminaltose for the first few years of his training, but she died when he was still a young man. History would debate who was the better wizard, Kel or Beatrice, but once they were gone, there was no one to challenge Heminaltose’s claim until Meglar rose to power.

Unlike Kel, who was an innovator, Heminaltose was more of a perfectionist. Kel liked to test the limits and find new ways to use magic, whereas Heminaltose experimented with how use magic more efficiently. The two never met, and it was unlikely they would have been friends.

Several centuries before his death, Heminaltose found the entrance to an abandoned outpost of Trellham on the plains of Gharaha. Though Heminaltose never spoke of it, Honorus led him to the spot with instructions to build his new school inside the abandon town. To the world, he told the story that he was search for somewhere to build his school and chanced upon the partially damaged gates.

When Meglar stole the Source from Yar-del, King Bren of Yar-del and Heminaltose made plans to enlarge the living area to accommodate the survivors of Yar-del should it fall. With time it began more evident that Meglar’s theft would give him an insurmountable edge, Heminaltose and Queen Zenora, Bren’s daughter, expanded the sanctuary against the day all the Seven Kingdoms fell.

Of course Farrell knew nothing about the instructions his mother and grandfather gave Heminaltose.To Farrell, his teacher was aloof and disinterested in him as a person. In truth, Heminaltose cared for Farrell a great deal, but never showed it for fear he’d get too close to his student should he need to take action.

Although Heminaltose dies before the series proper begins, he will be ‘appear’ throughout the series. He had too great an influence on Farrell to be relegated to a sentence or two in passing.  My hope is do a few more free prequels during the series and a younger Heminaltose is near the top of the list to have his own story.

Enjoy!
firstlove

PUBLISHER:DSP Publication

 

SERIES:Champion of the Gods

 

RELEASE DATE:27thJanuary 2015

 

LENGTH:40 Pages

 

BLURB:Prequel to The Last Grand Master
A Champion of the Gods Story

On a visit to Yar-del with Grand Master Heminaltose to celebrate his age of majority birthday, Farrell catches the eye of Lieutenant Cameron, a handsome young officer in the Queen’s Guard. But having spent most of his life cooped up at Heminaltose’s school for wizards, Farrell is clueless as to palace intrigue. He is unaware that his access to the queen is something others would greatly prize. When the queen points out that his suitor is the son of a social climbing minor noble, Farrell must decide whether to heed the warning or meet with Cameron anyway.

 

BUY LINKS:

 

DSP Publication – http://www.dsppublications.com/books/first-love-by-andrew-q-gordon-72-b

All Romance eBooks – https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-firstlove-1729343-234.html

Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/First-Love-Champion-Andrew-Gordon-ebook/dp/B00SM1UTOQ/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1422104210&sr=1-1

 

EXCERPT

 

Tenth hour would take an eternity to arrive, but they both had to attend to their duties. Although Cameron seemed suitably impressed by his appointment, it didn’t improve Farrell’s mood.

 

He stopped himself as he started to think of ways to get out of dinner. Not going wasn’t an option. More importantly, Heminaltose only allowed Farrell brief visits to Yar-del City to see his mother. Skipping dinner meant one less chance to spend time with her. And he’d see Cameron at tenth hour.

 

“Boy.” The deep voice behind Farrell made him freeze.

 

He turned slowly but already knew who he’d find. “Master Heminaltose.”

 

Dressed in his formal blue-gray robe, he leaned on his white wooden staff and tilted his head to the left. “What brings you to this out-of-the-way place? And why are you just standing there?”

 

Farrell had been in trouble often enough to know his master suspected him of something. When he tried to answer, his mouth went dry and his tongue turned to stone.

 

“Well?” The older man raised his bushy white eyebrows and peered down his nose at his student. “I’m waiting for an answer.”

 

His euphoric mood dashed, Farrell knew better than to lie. “I came here to meet someone.”

 

“Someone?”

 

“Yes, Master, someone.” This approach never worked, but he’d been too embarrassed to answer directly.

 

“Don’t treat me like a fool.”

 

Despite being at least an inch taller than his teacher, Farrell felt like Heminaltose towered over him.

 

“I’m not, Master. I… I just….” His cheeks flushed and he started to sweat. “I’d rather not say.”

 

“Excuse me?”

 

“It’s private.”

 

“Private? You mean…?” Heminaltose jerked his head back and his eyes opened wider. “By the Six! Now? Your hormones have decided to kick in now?”

 

AUTHOR BIO: Andrew Q. Gordon wrote his first story back when yellow legal pads, ball point pens were common and a Smith Corona correctable typewriter was considered high tech. Adapting with technology, he now takes his MacBook somewhere quiet when he wants to write.

 

He currently lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his partner of nineteen years, their daughter and dog.  In addition to dodging some very self-important D.C. ‘insiders’, Andrew uses his commute to catch up on his reading. When not working or writing, he enjoys soccer, high fantasy, baseball and seeing how much coffee he can drink in a day.

 

AUTHOR LINKS:

Website: www.andrewqgordon.com

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/andrewqugordon

Twitter:  @andrewqgordon

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+AndrewQGordon

E-mail: andrewqgordon@gmail.com

 

GIVEAWAY DETAILS:

 

Andrew Q. Gordon is giving away the following:

–      $15 DSP Gift Card

–      An E-copy of “Third Eye” by Rick R. Reed

–      An E-copy of “Ghost” by Carole Cummings

–      An E-copy of a book by J. TullosHennig

 

Contest Begins: 27th January, 2015

Contest Ends:9th February, 2015

firstlove

Rafflecopter giveaway

El Camino – Spanish Edition of The Camino is OUT NOW!

el camino

Available on Amazon – other outlets to follow! 

Purchase Link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00SSQZ0OE

Synopsis:

Un seminarista de California conoce al hombre de sus sueños durante un recorrido a pie en España. Antonio no tiene ni la menor idea… de que el apuesto Jeb es un demonio tormenta. 

Cada año, miles de personas hacen un viaje espiritual llamado El Camino, una antigua travesía por Europa, cruzando Francia, Portugal y España. Cuando Antonio se embarca en El Camino, está a un paso de convertirse en diácono de transición, la fase final antes de ser sacerdote, pero siente que su nuevo deseo por otros hombres viola su vocación elegida. Incluso mientras se cuestiona su capacidad para entrar en la vida religiosa, sus sueños son perseguidos por un misterioso y guapo extraño que despierta sus pasiones. En el viaje conoce a un compañero peregrino, Jeb, quien está cuestionando su propia vida y busca respuestas. Jeb se parece al hombre de sus sueños…

 

English Language:

A California seminarian meets the man of his dreams during a walking tour of Spain. Little does Antonio know…handsome Jeb is a storm demon.

Each year thousands of people make a spiritual journey called The Camino, an ancient walk through Europe, crisscrossing through France, Portugal and Spain. When Antonio embarks on The Camino, he is one step away from becoming a transitional deacon, the final phase before becoming a priest, but feels his new-found desire for other men violates his chosen vocation. Even as he questions his ability to enter the religious life, his dreams are haunted by a handsome mysterious stranger who rouses his passions. On the journey he meets a fellow pilgrim, Jeb, who is questioning his own life and seeking answers. Jeb looks just like the man in his dreams…

Little does he know, the choices he needs to make in his heart are about to get more difficult…than he could ever have imagined. How can he, a man devoted to God’s work, possibly love a man who has sold his soul to the devil?

Publisher’s note: This book has been previously published, re-edited and re-released with Ai Press.

English edition purchase link: http://www.amazon.com/Camino-AJ-Llewellyn-ebook/dp/B00GDL1U40/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1422383211&sr=1-1&keywords=the+camino+a.j.+llewellyn

 

The Write Way

writinglife

I am blogging today at Totally Bound’s author blog…http://www.totallyboundpublishing.com/?p=5659

In case you missed it or you wanna stick around here (and why not??!!) here is what I wrote:

 

By A.J. Llewellyn

Being a writer is a funny thing. I write to live, and I do live to write. I can’t say I have taken my passion for the craft for granted, but it’s second nature to me. It’s what I’ve always done since I was about seven years old. It has been my refuge. My sanctuary. My income. My life.

I’ve come to rely on it in ways I can’t explain to friends who don’t write. As I get older I look back on memorable moments in my life, such as the time I was working nights for Cellar Masters, a now-defunct company that sold wine through TV ads. Gone are the days when booze was promoted on the telly! I was one of many phone operators working with a headset and computer. The hours were dreadful (10pm – 2am) but the pay was great. For a struggling writer it was perfect. I worked in a room with other writers, out of work actors, out of work…everything. But anyway, my brother and his wife had just married and they were saving to buy a house. I recommended the job to them and my supervisor, who enjoyed my serious work ethic was keen to take them on, but there was just one small problem.

Neither of them could type!

I’d been typing since I was seven years old and didn’t think about the fact that some people might not know how to do it. I got my first typewriter at the age of 10 from my dad at Christmas. Before then I typed on his secretary’s massive desktop monster. She taught me how to use it and for me, it was instant and amazing true love. I used to go to my dad’s office after school and wait for him to take me home. My brothers raced around the place playing pirates, but I was busy writing stories. Silly stories, but I wrote them. It was a thrill for me.

Then he got me my own typewriter, a portable Olivetti I still own. It’s traveled the world with me. It became my best friend and I drove my dad nuts with my constant tap-tap-tap-Ping!

That was before he shunted me off to the US to live with relatives. Some parents have kids who drive them crazy with drumming. Other parents back when I was a kid had children who typed. Typewriters were noisy in those days!

But still to this day I miss that lovely Ping! at the end of a sentence…

I came to the US with my grandma a week after Christmas. She transported me from our home in Sydney to live with cousins in Northern California. We made two stops on the way. The first was to Disneyland. I’m not sure who was more excited – me or grandma. She burst into tears at the sight of The Happiest Place on Earth. I burst into tears much later when she wouldn’t let me go on anything more violent than Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride.

We made another detour to Las Vegas. I had an uncle who lived in Sin City (at a time when locals weren’t allowed to gamble) and he was my grandma’s nephew. We went by bus and I recall being on that damned thing for ever. I think she thought he’d give her piles of coins he won at the tables or something. I have no idea what she thought, but it was a disastrous visit because she’d booked our hotel room via some lunatic travel agent in Sydney and we wound up in a disgusting pit of a place off the strip. She refused to spend another time and relocate us. My uncle sprang for a room for the night at The Sands. To me it was more amazing than Disneyland. It is of course long gone, but back then, The Sands was the hottest hotel and I don’t mean the desert temperatures. It was classy and shiny and sparkly.

And they let me use their typewriter.

Being ten I wasn’t allowed in the casino, so while my grandma played what my dad always called the one-armed bandit (a poker machine), I sat in the booking office of The Sands and typed. For hours. It was the first time in my life that I wasn’t told to stop typing because it was late, or because there was school. Or because I should go outside and play. Or because… Because…because…because.

I typed until I felt like stopping and experienced a wondrous sense of peace afterward. I am embarrassed to reveal I’d spent all my time writing a love letter to the actor Richard Chamberlain (!) who owned my heart in those days, but even then I had a romantic’s heart. I guess I was getting ready to be a romance writer because I could see him in my mind, kissing me, hugging me…

I guess it was a sign of things to come. A writer writes. It’s what I do. And will always do.

Because…because…because.

Aloha oe,

A.J.

Knight Moves! – NEW Amber Allure PAX is OUT NOW!

Against A Wounded LandscapeLusty Knights Of BlazeOut Of TimeOh, What A KnightTender Is The Knight

KNIGHT MOVES is an Amber PAX anthology of five separate stories with one theme in common: this one involves knights. Buy one, or buy them all!

Here is the collective link:

http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/2113-AmberPax-Knight-Moves.aspx

And below are purchase links for each title and a synopsis of each:

 

Against a Wounded Landscape by Vivien Dean – Purchase link: http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/2108-Against-A-Wounded-Landscape.aspx

Synopsis:

Sir Tanash, the greatest knight Tasora has ever known, has one quest—to rescue his king’s only son. Fifteen years ago, Princy Liseny was kidnapped, and in the time since, Tasora has crumbled. By bringing the prince home, Tanash hopes to return the kingdom to its former glory.

As captive in a rival land, Liseny has spent most of his life locked away from the world, brought out as the ultimate prize while his real home is slowly destroyed. Escape is a godsend. So is Tanash, but neither is as simple as Liseny hopes. He has to learn to adjust in more ways than one. Though Tanash refuses to act on their mutual attraction, he does agree to help Liseny seek out an alliance to take back to Tasora.

What he doesn’t expect is to fall for the young prince along the way…

Genres: Gay / Fantasy / BDSM (Light)
Heat Level: 2
Length: Extended Novella (39k words)

Lusty Knights of Blaze by D.J. Manly – Purchase link: http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/2109-Lusty-Knights-Of-Blaze.aspx

Synopsis:

Years ago, the town of Waken Loch was conquered by the ruthless King Bastian and his overwhelming forces, and the occupation of the land changed Karnal Fugitaine’s world forever. During the intervening years, the king ruled with an iron fist, executing anyone who resisted, including Karnal’s father, and his soldiers transformed Waken Loch into a town no longer recognizable to its natives. The king’s men also coveted everything within the town, including Karnal’s older sister, Sarah, who died after giving birth to a child conceived in rape by one of the king’s lusty knights of Blaze.

The night Sarah was forced to serve the soldiers at the inn where she worked, one man was seen urging her toward his room, insisting she bring him fresh linens and supplies. That man was a knight named Dustin Porter.

Now, Karnal won’t rest until he finally locates Dustin and enacts his long-sought revenge. But the more Karnal learns about what happened to his sister all those years ago, and the handsome knight of Blaze named Dustin to whom he grudgingly finds himself attracted, the more he begins to wonder…is Dustin truly the culprit after all?

Genres: Gay / Fantasy / Ménage (M/M/M) / Group Sex
Heat Level: 3
Length: Novella (28k words)

Out of Time by A.J. Llewellyn Purchase link: http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/2111-Out-Of-Time.aspx

Synopsis:

Biologist Arlo Perez has spent his whole life avoiding decisions, confrontations, anything concrete. Anything resembling a commitment. When his lover, Miguel, dumps him, a depressed Arlo decides to put down roots in Merced, a small California town nestled between Yosemite and the old gold-panning country region. There, he secures a new fellowship at a college and looks forward to adventure and fun.

But just as he’s getting used to normal, he gets a whole lot more than he bargained for.

One day when his car breaks down, Arlo winds up at the mercy of a deranged garage owner in Port Hueneme. And somehow, he finds himself tossed back in time to an era of knights, dragons, and pit fights. Suddenly, he’s in Mexico, 1867, and there’s only one way out—fight or die.

Can Arlo get himself out of this horrible and confusing mess? Can he stop feeling out of place and out of his senses? Or is he completely out of time?

Genres: Gay / Fantasy / Time Travel / Paranormal / Action / Adventure
Heat Level: 3
Length: Novella (20k words)

Oh, What a Knight by Vivien Dean – Purchase link: http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/2110-Oh-What-A-Knight.aspx

Synopsis:

(Part of the Peninsula Heights series)

Following the death of his employer, Harvey St. Onge—a local gay man with a reputation for attracting handsome young men and throwing wild parties at his country estate—Griffin Andrews is literally on the outside looking in. Harv had promised to take care of Griff, but when the lawyer shows up and Griff is paid off and shown the door with the rest of the staff, he figures Harv “forgot” his promise. Now, Griff may be stuck in the country, miles from anywhere with no transportation and no proof of Harv’s promise, but he’s a survivor. So he packs what he can carry and starts walking.

Partway into his journey, however, a handsome motorist stops and offers Griff a lift. Shane Walker says he’s just going as far as Peninsula Heights. But by the time they get there, Griff’s life has done a fast one-eighty. He has a new friend, the promise of a job, and a place to stay. It all sounds too good be true.

Now Griff has to wonder—is Shane really Griff’s proverbial “white knight in shining armor” riding to his rescue, or something else?…

Genres: Gay / Contemporary / Series
Heat Level: 3
Length: Extended Amber Kiss (17k words)

Tender is the Knight by K-lee Klein – Purchase link: http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/2112-Tender-Is-The-Knight.aspx

Synopsis:

Tristan is a skilled knight, sworn to defend the Kingdom of Leadon. He’s devoted his life to being the best he can be, and he’s as steadfast and loyal as his knighted father was before him. But when the king of Leadon informs Tristan he’s arranged a marriage for him in order to unite Leadon with a neighboring kingdom, Tristan, for the first time, balks at an order. He cannot and will not marry the princess because his heart already belongs to another.

Clayne is the poor assistant to the village blacksmith, and content with his station in life. Especially since he has the love and support of a very special man…his very own tender knight. He and Tristan grew up together, forging a bond first of friendship, and then of love, and even when Tristan became a knight of the kingdom, nothing could shake them apart. But the king’s command that Tristan marry a princess just might.

When the king threatens Clayne’s life to get his way, Tristan is forced to choose between following the dictate to save the man he loves, or a riskier plan that will endanger them both and challenge everything in which they believe…

Genres: Gay / Fantasy / Witchcraft / Magic
Heat Level: 3
Length: Novella (29k words)

 

Back to Black Point is OUT NOW!

backtoblackpoint2

Back to Black Point – book 2 in my flagship series with the amazing D.J. Manly is OUT NOW at Mojocastle Press!

Purchase Link: http://www.mojocastle.com/back-to-black-point-black-point-book-2.html

About the Story:

Erotic romance authors Thomas Carter and Matt Lucas have ‘met cute’ as they say in Hollywood movies. They’ve fallen in love over a blissful weekend in balmy, tropical Black Point in the Hawaiian Islands.Separation is devastating for Matt, who returns to his home in California, pining for Thomas who abruptly cuts off all communication. Why has their volcanic passion been reduced to two impersonal lines in an email?Emboldened by his brother Ryan’s heartfelt advice, Matt flies to Montreal and to Thomas’s home in Montreal’s Gay Village, hoping to rekindle their idyllic romance, only to find him with another man–Christian–the same man who almost destroyed Ryan’s marriage to his husband Cole. What is Christian doing with Thomas, and what are his true motives?

With trust a big issue on both sides, can love find a way? And will Thomas and Matt survive the obstacles fate seems to keep throwing at them? Matt wants to give Thomas everything, but will Thomas let him?

 

Excerpt:

 

They had the house to themselves. They kicked off their shoes at the front door as was the custom in the Hawaiian Islands, and with the soft, fragrant breeze luring them from the wide-open sliding glass doors across the spacious living room, Matt and Thomas looked at each other. Ryan and Cole could come home at any moment. Do we dare take advantage of the living room with its elegant furnishings, spicy ginger stems in cut-glass vases and lovingly placed vintage coral statues?

It was Thomas who stepped forward and took Matt’s face in his hands, his tongue sweeping across his mouth. “This is just like one of your books.”

Matt grinned. “Or one of yours…”

“No.” Thomas kissed him again. “In my books, my men don’t linger with their tongues over their lovers’ bodies…”

“You need to linger over mine?” Matt’s words were swamped by the sensation of Thomas’ mouth on his throat, moving up toward his ear. Thomas licked a long, languid line up Matt’s neck. He moved behind him, putting a row of kisses on the nape.

“Man, I wanted to do that all day.”

Matt moved around to feel Thomas’ hard, perfect body in his arms, shifting the groceries from one hand to the other. “Maybe we should put this stuff in the fridge.”

“Maybe you should focus on the issue at hand, Matt.” Thomas put a possessive hand on Matt’s crotch, rubbing in an assured way, taking the plastic sack from him and tossing it onto the ottoman. It bounced with a sickening crash of glass to the floor.

He stepped up his unnecessary seduction with lingering swabs wherever his mouth happened to land. It was hard for Matt to stay vertical with Thomas licking and kissing him everywhere.

“Take your clothes off. Leave your underpants on.”

Matt stripped quickly, leaving on his black Calvin briefs. Thomas stripped down to his white ones, sporting a nice, hard cock.

He rubbed against Matt for one sweet moment, quickly dropping to his knees to trace the outline of Matt’s hardening cock with his relentless tongue. He sucked in the head through the stretch fabric, causing Matt to moan in a mixture of joy and frustration. He wanted to feel Thomas’ hot mouth on his skin.

Thomas pushed him to the huge, comfortable sofa, spreading his legs and licking a trail from Matt’s ass to the band that ended just above the private path of his treasure trail.

Thomas knelt between his legs, and their kissing continued. Thomas refused to join him on the sofa. He wanted a full exploration of Matt’s body.

Matt was ecstatic when Thomas finally decided the voyage ended with his toes and retraced, his tongue dancing back to the pleasure zone.

“Oh, my baby’s hungry for me.” Thomas lowered the underpants over Matt’s rigid cock and suckled the ripe, juicy head with a tender voraciousness. “I love how hard you get for me,” he mumbled, putting his lips right back over him. Matt panted underneath him and Thomas pushed the underpants down until they dangled from one foot. “Open your legs, baby. Daddy’s hungry.”

Matt cried out when Thomas’ tongue stabbed at his ass. His hands reached forward to curve over Thomas’ chest and arms. He loved the feel of him, had almost memorized each muscle, each tiny blemish, like the scar from a hula hoop accident when he was five. He loved, loved, loved this man.

– See more at: http://www.mojocastle.com/back-to-black-point-black-point-book-2.html#sthash.Tahcuir9.dpuf

 

The Writer’s Life Vs. The Real Life

a-map-of-a-writers-mind

By A.J. Llewellyn

With the social whirl that makes up the end of the year it’s come to my attention that I am a bit schizophrenic. I think all writers are. It’s not a new observation perhaps, but it’s a valid one, especially around the holidays.

I love my friends and family, but I have so many books in various stages of completion/edits/promo that I veer between my imaginary world and the real one, and oh yes, I do most often prefer the fantasy one!

In my books, my gay couples rarely cheat. The men love each other and communicate easily. The forgive each other, have romantic dinners, and manage to overcome the various crises of all those around them. They even manage to have sex, even when they have children in their lives!

The reality for many gay men is nothing like my books. I was made painfully aware of this over a pre-Christmas dinner with friends last night at a gay couple’s home. I mention they’re gay because it is pertinent. I am in the middle of doing rewrites for a book originally published several years ago. The couple in question inspired it. I trooped to their home and should have known it was a bad sign when I dropped the wine bottle on their doorstep and it broke,

They were lovely about it, but there was tension in the house as we all chatted and waited for dinner. The house stands on Mulholland Drive, overlooking Los Angeles. As usual, I began plotting a book set right in this home and imagined a sex scene taking place in front of the log fire. Oh, I could see it all. Every body movement, every kiss, hand gesture, you name it. I ran off to the bathroom to jot it all down in a notebook and returned to find a scene of total disaster.

The two men were arguing over the electricity being shut off earlier in the day for nonpayment. Though it came back on, their temperamental oven refused to work and the turkey and ham were sill raw inside it. They were upset with each other’s in-laws, with social services for deeming their home inappropriate for child adoption – it went on and on. We ended up ordering Chinese food and laughing about life, but of course, being a writer, all these negative things only enhanced the scene I planned to write.

In my mind – and in my story – once the guests had gone, the happy couple would kiss and make up by the dying embers of the fire. I suspect it’s not what really happened, but I don’t want to know. I believe in true love. I believe that it conquers all. And I believe in happy endings.

I like to think there is a place for love and magic in the real world. At this time of year and every other season. I wish you a holiday time of love, and joy, and yes, I wish you the belief in all things possible. I wish you a year of all good things.

Merry Christmas,

Love, AJ

Night Hag is OUT NOW!

NightHag

 

Night Hag and the funny, feisty tales that make up the Amber PAX Heavy Petting 2 collection of books, is OUT NOW!

Buy one, or buy them all! Here is the link to ALL the books: http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/2073-AmberPax-Heavy-Petting-2.aspx

Featuring my story, Night Hag, and other tales of wonder from the totally awesome J.D. Walker, T.A. Chase, K.M. Mahoney and Heidi Champa, this collection is a follow-up to the original Heavy Petting collection.

Here’s a taste of what you can look forward to!

From the Rubble by T.A. Chase

Purchase Link:http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/2069-From-The-Rubble.aspx

Synopsis:

Ever since watching a search and rescue team find his lost sister, Keaton Goodwin has worked and trained to become a SAR handler. He raises the perfect dogs to work with him, and he loves his job. When he’s called to take his dog, Kaiser, to Bogata, Colombia after a devastating earthquake, Keaton heads out not sure what he’ll find.

And what he doesn’t expect to find is Master Sergeant Nodin Standing Bear.

Nodin’s squad has been sent by the Army to help keep the SAR teams safe during the search and rescue part of the operation. He’s done a lot of this kind of work during his twenty-three years of service, yet there’s something different about Keaton, and Nodin knows a disaster area isn’t the best place to start a relationship.

When Keaton disappears, Nodin has to face how much he really cares about the younger man. Will the emotions they feel amongst the rubble be enough of a foundation to build a future?

Crazy Cat Guy by Heidi Champa

Purchase Link: http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/2068-Crazy-Cat-Guy.aspx

Synopsis:

Jacob Danby loves cats. He makes room in his home and heart for seven of them, all strays and rescues. Unfortunately, his lawyer ex-boyfriend, Owen, didn’t share the same affinity for the pitter-patter of cat paws. When Owen presented Jacob with an ultimatum, the cats or their relationship, Jacob had no choice but to pick his pets.

When Jacob finds out that having so many cats puts him in violation of a town ordinance, he reluctantly turns to Owen for legal help. Can Jacob find a way to trust Owen again, or will his pride cost him more than just his beloved cats?

Learning to Love Cats by K.M. Mahoney

Purchase Link: http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/2070-Learning-To-Love-Cats.aspx

Synopsis:

Mike isn’t much of an animal lover. His sister, however, insists that every little boy needs a pet, which is how he finds himself sitting in a veterinary office, trying to explain the facts of life to his six-year-old nephew while holding a dead hamster in a shoebox. It’s not one of his finer moments. So of course, it’s just his luck that in walks the cute, shy, and utterly lust-worthy Riley Laytham. But Mike has never been one to let an opportunity pass him by, no matter how awkward the situation might be.

Riley isn’t used to guys flirting with him, and he definitely didn’t expect it to happen at the local vet office. In the kennels, no less, surrounded by dogs and cats, and under the close scrutiny of one overly inquisitive little boy. Riley’s first instinct is to make his excuses and run, but Mike is persistent.

Their first date is a disaster. They have nothing in common, and Riley’s cats seem determined to end the budding relationship before it can get started. For some reason, though, Mike isn’t running. Now Riley just has to decide if he can make it work with a guy who staunchly declares that he doesn’t like cats.

Of Paws and Pet Rocks by J.D. Walker

Purchase Link: http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/2072-Of-Paws-And-Pet-Rocks.aspx

Synopsis:

Barry Dunning is a gifted yet lonely pet groomer, fierce animal lover, and the painter of pet rocks, thanks to the lease on his tiny apartment that does not allow for actual pets. He’s been burned badly by an ex-boyfriend who left him with tons of debt, which will take years to pay off, and has built a wall around his wounded heart.

Sheldon Svenson, the handsome owner of the animal shelter where Barry volunteers on weekends, asks him out on a date. Barry—for once taking his sister’s advice—accepts. Dinner starts out well, but when the discussion turns to Barry’s past relationships, he panics and runs away.

Undaunted, Sheldon pursues Barry. But can Sheldon convince the man to risk losing his heart and to give their budding relationship a chance, despite his fears?

Night Hag by A.J. Llewellyn

Purchase Link: http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/2071-Night-Hag.aspx

Synopsis:

The sequel to Amber Allure’s Best Seller Bunyip

In the idyllic seaside town of Half Moon Bay, just outside of San Francisco, Gideon Hunter has just met the man of his dreams in Jory Wyatt. But how can he start something with Jory when Gideon has a monster of a problem? His newly adopted five-year-old daughter has some issues, and Gideon can’t even begin to cope with her little…idiosyncrasies…let alone fall in love. Not only that, but Jory has a few things to deal with himself. Namely his 175-pound dog Renaldo. Unfortunately, Gretchen has become attached to Renaldo, and the big drooling beast seems to have become smitten with her, too.

Jory has waited a long time for somebody as wonderful as Gideon to move to town. But can Gideon be as amazing as he seems? And is it true what their mutual friend Steve Maddox says about Gideon’s cute yet serious daughter? That she’s some kind of actual monster? Steve should know, especially since he has an unusual creature of his own…Norman the bunyip…

Note: Although this story is a sequel to Bunyip, it can be read as a stand-alone story.

The Great Pumpkin Chase

pump

By A.J. Llewellyn

“I would rather sit on a pumpkin and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion.”

– Henry David Thoreau

‘Tis the season of pumpkins. Lots and lots of pumpkins.

I’m not sure if we’re all yearning for a return to gentler times, or we’re embracing the spirit of the great round thing called The World, but I like it. I’ve been reading a lot about the symbolism of pumpkins and way back when – before we commercialized this time of year – pumpkins were considered a sign of good fortune and abundance. Households had strict rules about keeping only round pumpkins, which represented the world. They would carve their pumpkins for good luck. They would sometimes hollow them out and place candles in them to symbolize lighting the way home.

We’re still observing these rituals and I noticed I’ve been invited to more pumpkin-carving parties this year (for adults) than I have in all the years I’ve lived in Los Angeles.

Shopping at my favorite store Trader Joe’s recently, I became a bit obsessed with the “everything’s pumpkin!” motif. There were pumpkin raviolis, pumpkin bread, pies,soup, breakfast rolls, pumpkin truffles (with sea salt and caramel…mmmm…), pancake mixes, pumpkin muffins, seeds, spiced seeds, pumpkin fudge, ice cream, toaster pastries, and my favorite, pumpkin cheesecake.

Sure it’s seasonal, but it seems to be just huge right now. After this weekend the scary Jack-o-lanterns will be replaced by plain pumpkins and gourds in readiness for Thanksgiving. I love this time of year. I like the chilly mornings and evening, the hot summer days and thinking about how I’ll cook pumpkin for dinner. I was walking my dog today thinking about this blog and it struck me that ever since I heard the story of Cinderella’s coach, which of course. was really a humble pumpkin, I’ve seen them as a symbol of hope, and love. And of course, magic.

I write about all three, so as I started thinking about this blog I realized as much as we’re heading into chaotic waters with the electronic generation, many of us are sticking to tradition and myth. I’ve never liked Halloween because I didn’t grow up with it, but as I yearn for a simpler life, of reconnecting with my own family’s traditions and celebrating cycles and seasons, I will attend those pumpkin-carving parties and I’ll happily participate in Halloween festivities with my niece and nephews.

I want them to have memories of pumpkins, the belief in magic, tradition, and most importantly, love.

As I write this, my niece is in my kitchen making coconut pumpkin cookies from a recipe she found online. I have baked with her since was two years old and I will get in there in a minute and help her demolish them all. We’ve stopped pretending that we’ll save some for our other family members.

She is is so in the moment as one is when young, and she is a powerful reminder to me that some things never change. Anticipating the seasons and the good things to be found in them is like re-reading a treasured book. We want the comfort of the story, for the magic to weave its glow all over us again.

However you celebrate this time of year, I wish you peace, love, freedom, a good book to read.

And a great big pumpkin.

Happy Halloween,

A.J.

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