They land June 22, 2017 as part of the first Gay Romance Kindle World!
The world is set around Felice Stevens’ Memories of the Heart and Breakfast Club series. As an enthusiastic fan of both, I was delighted to be asked to participate, especially when Felice indicated she’d love to see me write something with a science fiction element. After jumping up and down a little (I actually do this) I told her I was gonna bring aliens to New York.
I’m sure she regretted asking me at that point.
I parked my butt in front of the laptop and wrote Uncommon Ground.
Because Felice’s books are contemporary, I didn’t want to stray too far toward the weird, so my aliens look human. Mostly. And while Uncommon Ground includes a little alien abduction, it’s a story about two lonely guys looking for that one person who makes them feel special. Mostly.
(Yes, there is such a thing as just a little alien abduction.J)
Several other authors are writing stories set in Felice’s world, including Lane Hayes, Nic Starr, Silvia Violet and Jenna Kendricks. I’m fairly certain none of them are writing about aliens. But that’s okay! I don’t mind being a little different.
Time for the cover and an excerpt!
Dillon Lee’s grandfather was a conspiracy theorist. Every summer he’d take Dillon on a tour of New York City while entertaining him with tales of aliens. Fifteen years later, after a phone call from a lawyer, Dillon is carrying his grandfather’s ashes from landmark to landmark, paying a sort of tribute, and trying to figure out what to do with his unexpected legacy. When someone tries to steal the ashes, a guy Dillon has barely met leaps to the rescue, saving the urn and the day.
Steilang Skovgaard is a reclusive billionaire—and not human. He’s been living in Manhattan for over twenty years, working on a long-term plan to establish a safe haven for his people. For seven years, his reports have gone unanswered, however, and he is the only surviving member of his interstellar team. The connection he forms with Dillon soon after meeting him is something he’s missed, something he craves.
But after someone keeps trying to steal the ashes, it looks as though Dillon’s grandfather was involved in more than theories—and might not have been exactly who everyone thought he was. Steilang doesn’t know how close he can get to the truth without revealing himself, and Dillon is running out of people to trust. Can these two work out what’s going on before the thieves set their sights higher?
Uncommon Ground will be available for purchase at Amazon on June 22, 2017. I don’t have preorder details at this time, but will post them on my Facebook page when I do.
SOMEONE HAD JUST stolen his grandfather. Dillon chased the girl along the crowded avenue, dodging commuters, sign posts, and the occasional tree. He yelled after her—not expecting her to actually obey the command to “Stop, thief!” but sort of hoping someone else might grab her shoulder. No such luck. Bored New Yorkers either jumped out of his path or scowled in his wake.
The girl disappeared around a corner, and Dillon followed, panting and swearing. He had his sketchbook clutched in one sweaty hand, a Pitt marker in the other, and both were slipping from his fingers. His flip-flops slapped loudly against the pavement. He clutched his full hands to his chest and put on another burst of speed.
Up ahead, a figure darted out of an alley and reached for the girl, one hand outstretched. It was the guy from the coffee shop. He managed to catch the backpack, and Dillon watched in horror as the half-zipped bag pulled open, spilling his life across the sidewalk. His laptop went one way, trailing a tangle of cords, his unmentionables the other. Dillon bore down, putting on another burst of speed, and reached for the slim computer, knowing he wasn’t close enough to catch it. Dimly, he was aware of the dull thud as the clothing-wrapped urn touched down.
Time slowed. Dillon imagined he could already hear the crack of plastic as his laptop hit the sidewalk. Would the screen break? Would he be able to recover his hard drive if it did? Someone else’s arm swooped in front of him, catching the laptop before it touched down. Unable to check his momentum, Dillon collided with the guy, knocking him forward so that they both fell to the ground. He braced his elbows for impact, wincing as concrete tore at the skin of one, and yelled again—an apology this time—as he felt the other dig into the person half beneath him.
Under all that, he heard the dreaded crunch.
Dillon rolled sideways, stopping with his head nearly hanging over the curb. The smell of New York rushed up to meet him with a vent of hot air from a nearby grate. Dust, hot metal, a century’s worth of decomposing leaf mulch, and the sweat of millions of people. Dillon gagged. He remembered the smell of the city but didn’t usually get so up close and personal with it.
Shouting drew his attention to the street he’d just managed not to roll into. The guy from the coffee shop was chasing something that flashed like a revolving strobe. Oh God, the urn. It must have rolled out of his T-shirt and shorts and was now making its way across Columbus Avenue. Dillon pushed to his feet and stepped out after it.
Cabs swerved away from the thing rolling across the street and the man chasing after it. Tires screeched, horns honked, and people shouted. Then, a high-pitched squeal rose above the rest, and Dillon watched, dumbstruck, as a bicycle courier smacked into the coffee shop guy, knocking him aside like a bowling pin.
The courier ricocheted off in the opposite direction and smacked into a parked car before toppling sideways and spilling his satchels into the street. The rider’s helmeted head bounced once with what seemed like an abnormally loud crack.
The loud blare of a horn shocked Dillon back to his senses just as a cab pulled up in front of him, stopping inches from his trembling legs. The heat from the front of the car rolled forward in an angry cloud, and the hot fumes of exhaust, panic, and bewilderment clogged his mouth and nose. Dillon couldn’t see the guy from the coffee shop. He couldn’t see his grandfather’s urn. He had no idea if the person he’d knocked down had decided to run off with his laptop, and he’d just escaped death or serious injury by less than six inches.
He leaned forward, bracing his hands on the hood of the cab, and breathed. His thoughts swam out to the edges of his consciousness before bouncing back with an oddly determined thwack. Using the cab as leverage, or simply to keep him upright, Dillon made his way around the front bumper and looked for something to do—a task that would lead him out of this nightmare. Behind the cab he ran into a crowd of people all standing over a rumpled heap of charcoal-gray suit.
Dillon stumbled toward the ring of onlookers. He tugged at an elbow and angled his way through, only to drop to his knees. The guy from the coffee shop lay curled on his side, his arms wrapped around the urn. His sunglasses were askew so that Dillon could see one dark-brown eye. The man blinked a couple times, looked directly at Dillon, and smiled.
Lifting the urn, he said, “I got it.”