Loving your best friend is easy. Telling him you do…well, that’s the hard part.
Michael and Steven grew up together—just them, no girls allowed. They’d always planned to join the military, but when it came time to sign up, Michael couldn’t do it. For years, Michael has worried every time Steven is out in the desert, risking his life to serve and protect. He dreads the day Steven won’t come home.
Steven has been through a dreadful ordeal on duty, and while in the hospital, he’s had time to think about what’s important in life. He misses Michael—needs to get back home to be with him—and he has something he wishes to say, something he’s held inside as far back as he can remember…
When the two men reunite, revelations are the name of the game. There is no question they’ve always loved each other, but now that they have the chance to express that love, will they?
Publisher's Note: This book has previously been published as part of the Aim High anthology by Pride Publishing.
General Release Date: 17th November 2015
Michael stared through the large window of the café, his coffee steaming on the table in front of him. The place was almost empty except for him, another guy at the back and the waitress scrubbing the countertop. His week off was proving a bind—he wasn’t used to being idle—and with nothing much to do he’d found himself at loose ends. The café had seemed as good a place as any to visit, and he could watch the world go by—or the residents of Valley Springs at any rate.
Outside, people dressed in a variety of summer wear walked in and out of the shops opposite, a row of three consisting of a mini mart, a hair salon and a dry cleaners. Everyone seemed so normal, so I’ve-got-something-to-do—on a mission, the lot of them.
Mission. That word brought terror to Michael’s heart. Usually gave him panic attacks if he thought about them in depth. His friend, Steven, was on a mission right now—the Air Force owed Michael a bunch of stomach settling meds, that was for sure.
He sighed, wondering whether he’d get a letter from Steven sometime soon. They’d been sporadic of late—emails weren’t coming too often either—and the loss of regular contact always gave Michael more reason to crap his damn pants. He let his mind wander to places it shouldn’t go, and he saw things he shouldn’t torment himself with, like Steven’s plane being shot down or—
Don’t think about it. He’ll be fine.
Yeah, Steven would be fine. Always had been and always would be, Michael reckoned, seeing as Steven was one hell of a lucky son of a bitch. He’d been through hell and back in the past when on duty, and had come out smiling. Walking. Talking. In one piece.
Michael sipped his coffee and recalled the last time he’d seen Steven. Man, that had been a good reunion, the pair of them holed up in The Dusty Shack with beers followed by whiskey chasers, their legs getting more unsteady with every mouthful. Michael had nearly blurted out his feelings that night, alcohol giving his tongue a good loosening, making him want to throw caution not only to the wind but to any other kind of weather too. He’d stopped himself, though. He didn’t need the sour strike of lightning, the roar of thunder. What he needed was to keep his emotions secret so that there was only sunshine and brightness on Steven’s leave.
I love him so much it hurts.
“Do you want a bagel or something?” Sandy the waitress asked, standing close by Michael’s side as though she wanted to block him in, to stop him from leaving after he’d finished his coffee.
She twiddled with a hank of her long blonde hair, curling it around a finger, and smiled, her bright red lips parting to show her teeth. Maybe she was bored and needed something other than scrubbing to do, but her closeness always had Michael feeling uneasy. Each time he visited the café, and even if he bumped into her in town, she tended to invade his personal space more often than not. The last time he and Steven had been in the café together, Steven had cracked a joke that Sandy had the hots for Michael.
Word Count: 12,914
Book Length: SHORT STORY
Genres: EROTIC ROMANCE
MEN IN UNIFORM
Sarah Masters is a multi-published author in three pen names writing several genres. She lives with her husband, youngest daughter, and a cat in England. She writes at weekends and is a cover artist/head of art in her day job. In another life she was an editor. Her other pen names are Natalie Dae and Geraldine O’Hara.
Sarah also co-authors with Jaime Samms, and as Natalie Dae she co-authors with Lily Harlem under the name Harlem Dae.
Reviewed by LeAnn's Book Reviews
I enjoyed this friends to lovers romance very much, especially since everything about Michael and Steven felt real. I got to see how deeply they cared for each other as friends and how much they longe...
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Reviewed by MM Good Book Reviews
Once these two were finally honest about their feelings, things got a little steamy. This is another one I’d love to read going back and giving more details of their friendship and the years of th...
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Sarah Masters - Fresh Fiction feature
They say writing is one of the loneliest of occupations. I have to respectfully disagree. Yes, you’re usually alone when putting pen to paper or fingertips to keyboard, but how can you be alone when you have a whole host of characters in your head to keep you company?