Leaving was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. He would have killed me if I stayed, though. I couldn’t have done it without Warwick’s help. Not only did he give me the out I needed, but also a safe place to live. With my ex looming around every corner, looking for the chance to get his hands on me, I received the best gift ever—a month in England—and I took it!
England was supposed to help Jack get away from his ex and find himself again. I wasn’t supposed to fall in love with him there. Especially when I knew he might stay… indefinitely. With my busy schedule as an ER doctor, an ocean between us, and the trust issues his abusive ex inflicted, the chance of a successful long-distance relationship is close to zero. Loving Jack may be the one thing I can’t fix.
Wow! For a short story, it packed quite a bit in.
Jack has been taken to the ER by his boyfriend, (read abuser), after sustaining injuries from a “fall”. It is not hard to guess what really happened as Warwick, the ER doctor, correctly assesses.
Warwick is a UK transplant working as an ER doctor in Baltimore. When meets Jack, he is immediately drawn to him, first as a healer and then something more. He tries to help Jack get away from the abusive situation, but as is so often the case, the victim is too afraid to leave. Despite that, he gives Jack a way to contact him if he should ever need help. Sadly, Jack does need the help and he finds the courage to get away to safety, to Warwick.
The subject of domestic abuse is not light, but it was portrayed in such a way that it didn’t make the story depressing. Instead, it focused more on how Jack dealt with the aftermath of abuse – adjusting to not having to cower, not having to ask permission to do things, or having to ask what to watch on the box or what to eat.
The attraction between the 2 men developed naturally. Some may wonder why Jack would be attracted to anyone after just coming out of an abusive relationship, but that relationship had soured several months ago, so it made sense.
Diandra, Warwick’s and Jack’s family round out the characters and made a good support group for Jack.
I really liked the story – some parts were a little rushed, (the MCs overall relationship and the end), but it’s really a bright (vs dour) read given the subject matter.
4 stars out of 5