OS: Welcome to Xenia Melzer here to talk about her new book!
The incident with the hare
(This little story refers to an incident Collin mentions during his first meeting with Martin on a deserted street outside Miami.)
With a sigh Collin climbed out of his beat-up old truck to open the gate guarding the old factory building that was his studio. He really didn’t see why it was necessary to have the fence and the gate to protect his measly belongings. It wasn’t as if his art was worth that much and the most expensive things he owned were his colors and canvases, which were of little use to a thief, unless said thief was an artist himself and somehow Collin didn’t see other artists stealing from a colleague. But Jude insisted on the gate and he came by often enough to notice if Collin got sloppy with closing it, and since Collin could do without the argument that would surely follow, he dutifully went through the process of opening the gate, driving his truck through it and closing it again. Once he was done, he gathered the branches and stones he had collected in the woods to bring them inside his studio. When he opened the door, he was greeted by a happily bouncing Dog, whose enthusiastic barking had started the moment Collin had pulled up in front of the gate. Laughing at the Rottweiler’s attempts to cover him in slobber, Collin managed to fend him off long enough to dump his findings in the corner left to the door. As soon as his hands were free, he started petting the huge dog who could never get enough of being touched. Usually Dog took his sweet time greeting Collin, but today he started bouncing in the direction of the small kitchenette after only a few minutes of affection. Collin followed him without hesitation, wondering what was going on.
The moment he crossed the wide space littered with easels, paint, half-finished sculptures, and canvases, Collin noticed a strange, metallic quality in the air that made his nostrils flare. It was distinct enough for him to realize what it was – blood. Dog was yapping excitedly, grabbing the hem of Collin’s T-Shirt and dragging him toward the kitchenette.
There, on the old wooden planks, lay a hare. Collin knew it was a hare because of the head with the long ears that stared at him with a slightly accusing look. The rest of the animal was – everywhere. Bits of fur had made it as far as the sink, the blood had seeped into the dry planks of the floor, leaving stains that formed an oddly interesting pattern of drops and smears, bits of flesh and colorful innards were splattered around, and Dog was looking so proud and happy, Collin just didn’t have it in him to reprimand him for the mess. He patted Dog on the head. “You did well, Dog. That’s a very pretty hare. Where did you catch it? I’m proud of you, you deserve a treat.”
Dog’s short tail wagged furiously at the mention of a treat and as soon as he had his dried pig’s ear to chew on, he retreated to the couch to enjoy it, leaving Collin alone with the mess in the kitchen. The first thing he did was picking up the head of the hare by the ears. “I’m really sorry about that. Dog can get a bit over-eager sometimes. I know it sucks for you, but perhaps you’d feel better if I told you that I can use your skull for one of my sculptures. In a way, you’re going to be immortal and even though that can suck, too, it’s still better than being completely forgotten, don’t you think? And I promise I won’t forget you either, so there’s that.”
Collin gently placed the hare’s head on the kitchen counter, got his cleaning supplies, and went to work, all the time thinking about how fragile life was, how easily it could end, how persistently it kept coming back, how it never really stopped or gave up, and how it was his job to see it all, to honor it and make some room for the dead in his art and his thoughts.
Sometimes the perfect man can be found in the most unexpected place….
Martin Carmichael owns a security firm and is part owner of Club Whisper. He’s a Dom in search of the right guy, and when his car breaks down on a lonely stretch of road, he thinks he might have found him.
Artist Collin Malloy is talented, easygoing, but somewhat insecure. Still, he has a big heart and is quick to offer help when he sees Martin in need. To thank him, Martin invites Collin to dinner, where the attraction between them becomes harder to resist.
But what will become of their budding relationship when Martin reveals that he likes his men bound, submissive, and in pain? Is it something Collin can accept… and possibly enjoy exploring? Even if he can, Collin has a secret of his own—a secret he doesn’t even realize he’s keeping.
Xenia Melzer is a mother of two who enjoys riding and running when she’s not writing stories. She doesn’t like beer but is easily tempted by a Virgin Mojito. Or chocolate. Truffles are especially cherished, even though she doesn’t discriminate. As a true chocoholic, she welcomes any kind of cocoa-based delight.
You can contact her through her website: http//www.xeniamelzer.com
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