Please welcome Tina Blenke with
Life Worth Living
Jake has been hiding in plain sight, always a few rows behind his straight-crush Quentin during their four years of college. He’s been successful so far but just as they’re about to graduate, Quentin finds out Jake’s secret and Quentin shares one of his own. He’s in the closet.
Jake isn’t about to let this opportunity pass him by especially when Quentin is scheduled to leave for the East coast in a few short summer months. Willing to keep Quentin’s secret from his upper crust politically-fueled homophobic family, Jake shares his bed and eventually his heart.
Quentin’s life in the closet is non-negotiable. His family has strong political ties and any word about their son’s sexuality would cast him out of the family and out of his inheritance which he desperately needs to finish his education. He’s been successful keeping his sexuality a secret for years until he meets the irresistibly adorable Jake at an early graduation party.
Quentin is unable to ignore his desire for Jake and makes the life-altering leap that holds his future in the balance. Locked away from the public eye, the two men admit their love for one another. In three short months, they will be forced to part ways for graduate school but the challenges of potential scrutiny, family commitment and an un-promised future may prove to be more than they can overcome.
“Cora? He’s really gone, isn’t he?”
“You did what you had to do to save both your life and his career. You didn’t do a goddamned thing wrong, you hear me? You are one of the bravest men I know,” she growled.
“Yeah, right. I’m the gayest man you know.”
“You shut the fuck up right now, Jake. I don’t let anyone bad-mouth you around me and that includes you. It takes a real man to stand up for who he truly is on the inside. The easy way out would be to hide who you are and live in the closet for fear of what the world will say or do to you.”
“Now that’s not fair,” I argued immediately, thinking of Quentin’s situation.
“And for what? Admitting that you want to love another man? It’s a beautiful romantic notion, Jake. You throw yourself bare to the world for love, the noblest feeling in the world, and all you expect in return is someone to return the feeling. And what does that rat bastard do? He shows you what it feels like to be loved, only there was a condition on it, wasn’t there? As long as he could hide you from the world and not be proud of the honest, kind and decent man that you are. He should have been yelling your name from the mountains or something. Instead? Instead, he runs and hides so he can save his face from his family.”
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Additional, exclusive excerpt:
He exited from the back dressing rooms and my jaw hit the floor. His beautiful body was naked from the waist up save for black bands wrapped around each bicep. He stood with a group of men, withdrawn and focused against the far wall. His expression was somber and his clothing drew attention to his physique. The loose-fitting black pants were cut low at the waist and fell to his knees. A sheer black sarong was wrapped at his waist, draped low in the front and the back, allowing just a peek of his skin on each of his hips while sensually covering his legs down to his ankles. I was surprised by the lack of a costume. My mind wanted to dress him with tiny gold and silver bells and a broad silver scimitar tied with ribbons of fabric. Though it wasn’t what I expected, in one word, Quentin was absolutely mouthwatering, and I wanted him.
The music started and the men filed into the circle, castanets ringing, and with the audience clapping, they danced. I hadn’t watched this type of dance before, and I was hypnotized by the fluidity of the motions and the staccato vibrations of their graceful movements. The softness of their bellies compared sharply with the cuts of their hips in time with the change in music. They were a few dances into the performance when Quentin stepped forward.
About the author:
Tina is a retired Air Force brat and has lived in several states as well as a handful of countries. She has always had a soft spot for literature and is a voracious reader. When she isn't writing, she can be found cuddled up with a good book. Though Tina adores a thrilling novel with sappy lovesick heroes, she is terrified of things that go bump in the night. This makes for quite a complicated relationship with zombies, something that she just can't get enough of.
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