Exclusive Excerpt from Freedom
by E. Davies
“Give it to me now.”
Henry stumbled as he locked up the mini-bus and pocketed the keys. “What?”
“The dirt. There’s no way you don’t have dirt. You haven’t said a word about your Grand Canyon trip.”
Trip leaned on the side of the bus next to him, scratching his short beard. His warm brown eyes were fixed on Henry, not letting him get away. They were just getting ready to take out a crowd of guys on a bachelor party.
God, it was hard to explain why this date had been so significant. It hadn’t seemed like Jaden was just experimenting, curious about trying it with a trans guy. And for Henry… feeling confident enough to disclose his past, face-to-face, for the first time in a year? Being treated just as himself in return? Then having the most unbelievably awesome sex of his life? It was like a dream come true.
“Ah, I dunno,” Henry said with a shrug and a smile, trying to deflect.
“Did you like him? Did you hate him? Who was it? What was he like?”
This, at least, Henry could say. “He was… amazing. Sweet, kind, gentle. A little bit quiet. Playful sense of humor. Really anxious, but I know how to help with that.”
“Is he your type?” Trip grinned. “Did you fuck?” Heat rose in Henry’s cheeks, and Trip gasped. “He is! You did!”
Trip knew more about Henry than some of his gay friends. It was hard to admit to them how little sex he had. But he and Trip told each other almost everything—usually much more on Trip’s side, given that distinctly lacking sex life.
“Okay, fine,” Henry grumbled and elbowed Trip on the way by. “If you’re gonna be a nosy bastard, yes, we did.”
“Whoa. That’s not like you.”
Henry bit his lip. There was no way he could explain how right it had felt. What a relief-filled high he’d been on, even to contemplate it. And how well it had turned out, coming so hard he just about saw stars—and at another man’s hand, rather than his own.
It was the stuff of years of fantasies for Henry. But it was too embarrassing to admit that a plain old handjob had left him floating on cloud nine.
“No, it’s not. But you only live once, right?” Henry finally met Trip’s gaze again and smiled at him. “And we have great chemistry. I’m going to see him as soon as we get back from this trip tomorrow.”
“Whoa!” Trip exclaimed. He beamed at Henry. “Look at you. Next up will be your U-Haul moment.”
Agoraphobe Jaden has barely left the house in years. Being dragged to a gay bar by his big brother to bid on a blind date is not his idea of a good time. But then the unthinkable happens: he wins. Sure, he was just about ready to push his boundaries–but on his own time. Not with a probably-gorgeous stranger watching his every move.
Henry hasn’t been on a date in the last year–ever since he finished with lower surgery. He works as a nature guide now in the great outdoors, and his new life suits him just fine. Just one thing’s missing: a man to share it with. Jaden is sweet, accepting, yet terrified by everything about the date that isn’t Henry. But he sees something in Jaden–in his courage for showing up, and his hope and vulnerability along the way.
Back home, when he’s in Denver in between guiding trips, Henry quickly becomes a staple in Jaden’s home. With Jaden’s understanding, Henry grows confident in his own skin. And with Henry’s support, the walls of Jaden’s sheltered life open up. But every step forward seems like it comes with two steps back. Can they take a deep breath and step into the wide open future–together?
This novel is based on “Denver” — a short story from the Heart2Heart 2 anthology. It has been revised and significantly expanded. It is now a standalone gay romance novel with a happily ever after ending and no cliffhanger.
Available at: Amazon
About E. Davies
Since 2013, E. Davies has crafted feel-good stories of men in love–stories that are brimming with hope, found families, and realistic guys next door getting their modern fairytale endings. As for hobbies: rescuing bees, dancing badly, traipsing through meadows, and studying photos of cute guys for research totally count, right?
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