Exclusive Excerpt from Chasing Chance
by M.E. Parker
SET UP: This except is told from Andy’s point of view. After years of not speaking to each other, Andy and Chance have had an ‘encounter.’ Andy has not shared what happened with his friends. Andy and his friends prepare to watch what will turn out to be Chance’s biggest game of the season.
Two hours later, we were walking across the hall to Ben and Jordy’s apartment. Kick-off was at one o’clock and I only had a few minutes to get settled in front of the TV. Not that I would ever tell Chance, but I’d never missed a game since he started playing for the Lions. Of course, I never cared that much about football, but it was fun watching Chance play. It was a small way to hold on to him, I guessed. But that day, I was so freakin’ excited I couldn’t stand it. Jordy and Cam mostly just tolerated watching the games. Ben, on the other hand, was fanatical. He loved American football. It had become a tradition for the four of us to watch it together.
“Ugh… no offense to your friend Chance, but I’m glad football season is almost over. I’m ready for a new Saturday routine,” Cameron whined as we crossed the hall.
Before I could answer, Ben threw the door open. He was wearing a bright green Lions jersey that he’d paired with a pair of hot pink pants and a pair of white Vans. “Who let the Lions out, who, who?” he chanted, holding up his hand for a high five. I laughed and high-fived him.
Cam followed behind me. “Just so you know, that chant does not work at all with a British accent.”
I was still laughing when Ben replied, “What’s got your knickers in a twist? Have you no school spirit, man?”
“Rah. Rah,” Cam deadpanned as we descended onto the couch.
Jordy was at his drafting table working furiously on a design and ignoring us.
“So, please tell me the rumors are true. Are you really bonking Chance Wyrick?” Ben asked.
I leaned forward and looked at Cam who was sitting on the other side of Ben. “I wonder where that rumor started.” Cam pretended to examine his fingernails. “No, it’s not true. We were friends growing up. No one’s bonking anyone.”
Ben sighed. “Oh well, that’s quite a shame. Was he really at your flat last night?”
I rolled my eyes. Of course Cameron had given them the entire play by play last night. “Yeah, he stopped by,” I said, not wanting to elaborate.
“Next time he stops by, as you say, an introduction would be nice. I can’t believe you never told me you knew him. Could he get us tickets for a game?” Ben asked.
“Or better yet, could he get us into the locker room?” Cam interrupted.
I snorted. “Yes. Let me just call him up and ask him if he could get me and my three gay friends into the locker room so that we can ogle him and his teammates.”
“I should think they’d be flattered,” Ben said. “We are the hottest gays at Gilcrest.”
Cam spoke up. “Truer words were never spoken.”
“And don’t forget the most humble,” I added.
Jordy finally made a sound in the form of a snicker from his drafting table.
Cam sighed. “It really is a shame I misread the situation. I could swear my gaydar pinged last night. It’s never wrong.”
“Mine too,” Jordy said quietly.
I looked up at him, trying desperately not to show my surprise.
“Really?” Cam asked, turning towards him.
Jordy shrugged. “Yeah. We’re in some of the same classes. I haven’t met him. But there was a time during my freshman year that I thought maybe he was queer. But he definitely dates girls. I’ve seen it with my own eyes.”
“Hmmm… such a pity,” Cam said.
I focused on the TV, hoping the conversation was over. It was only a couple of minutes from kick-off and the commentators were discussing the defensive weaknesses of each team. Cam let out a loud sigh. “I’m already bored. Would anyone like a White Lion?” The White Lion was our signature cocktail for football games. Cam had insisted that we have a signature cocktail. It was really just a Mojito with a new name. “Me,” I said.
Ben raised his hand. “Me.”
“Three,” Jordy uttered from his drafting table.
The teams’ rosters scrolled across the screen and, as soon as the headshot of Chance popped up, filling the screen, an entire flock of butterflies set loose in my stomach. He looked so fucking hot in his Lions jersey. He was wearing the classic Chance Wyrick smile. And his big, brown eyes felt like they were staring straight at me. I’m totally fucked. No doubt about it.
About Chasing Chance
There are moments in your life that become part of you. They become so ingrained in your memory that you can’t let them go, no matter how hard you try. Some may seem small and insignificant when they happen. Others are so big and important that you know, even while you’re in the moment, that your life will be forever changed. For me, almost all those moments—both the small and insignificant as well as the big and important—were moments I shared with Chance Wyrick.
If I were in a support group for hopelessly pathetic gays, I’d have to introduce myself by saying, “Hi, I’m Andy Michaelson and I can’t stop myself from thinking about Chance Wyrick.”
From the time we met, when we were only six years old, and for the next twelve years, he was my best friend. I fell in love with him along the way. I couldn’t say exactly when it happened, only that it happened.
Words of advice:
Never fall in love with your best friend, especially if he’s one of the most popular kids at school, the best high school quarterback in the state, or if he happens to be your next-door neighbor.
But most of all…
Never, I repeat never, fall in love with your best friend if he’s straight. Nothing good can come of it. Trust me.
Our friendship was over before we finished our last year of high school. My best friend became my ex-best friend. I hoped to forget about him when I went off to college. But Chance followed me there. So did all the memories.
I tried to forget him. I did. But he was more beautiful than ever. He was the starting quarterback for Gilcrest University. He was larger than life. He was impossible to ignore. We hadn’t spoken in years, but the memories still hit me out of nowhere, and they still hurt.
By the time I started my third year at Gilcrest, I was beginning to think I’d never be over him.
As it turns out, I was right…
Chasing Chance is the first book in the Gilcrest University Guys series. It’s a full-length, “friends to lovers” romance novel. It has “coming out” and “first-time gay” themes, is stocked full of STEAM, heartache, and laughter, and it has a guaranteed happy ending. The series will follow the love stories of four college friends. Chasing Chance is the first of two books that will tell Andy and Chance’s love story. Look for book two, Catching Chance, to come out soon!
Available at: Amazon
About M.E. Parker
Mary Esther Parker, a former attorney, is an up-and-coming new author who lives in Tennessee with her teenage daughter and a grumpy white-haired cat. She loves to read just about anything. When she is not reading, she is writing, painting, making home improvements, or drinking wine with her best friends. She has a B.A. in Political Science and a J.D. from the University of Tennessee. She likes writing sweet love stories that combine a lot of laughs, sometimes a few tears, ooey-gooey romance at its best, and a whole lot of steamy sex, and she believes that when you put those things all together in the right way, you get the perfect feel-good read, guaranteed to leave you smiling in the end. She believes love is love, romance is romance, and gender is irrelevant.
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