Karenna Colcroft back to share the next excerpt from my male/male contemporary novel Love Like Vampires. The book officially releases on July 30, and you can pre-order your copy now from Dreamspinner Press in either ebook or paperback.
Monday morning, Shane fell out of bed. It was easier than trying to get his legs to cooperate with the whole standing up thing.
In the other bed, Thaniel was still sound asleep and snoring. He never believed Shane’s claims that he snored, and Shane had given up on trying to convince him.
He sat on the floor for a moment looking at Thaniel’s hand draped over the edge of his bed. That hand would have felt pretty damn good wrapped around the morning wood inside Shane’s boxer briefs, but he didn’t make the move. Thaniel had barely handled kissing him good-night the night before.
Shane wanted to grab him and tell him to knock it off, that sex between the two of them didn’t have to be any different than with anyone else, but it would have been a lie. Of course it was different. It was the two of them changing the friendship they’d had for years into something that might blow up in their faces.
The possibility didn’t do a damn thing to stop him from wanting Thaniel. Fuck what might happen in the future. This was about here and now and finally being able to admit something he’d hidden for years.
But he would give Thaniel the time and space he needed, even if it drove him crazy. For all of Thaniel’s grand ideas, the guy had always taken things slowly. Even if no one else was aware he was doing it.
Shane yawned and stretched out on his stomach on the floor. He had an early lesson to teach at the music shop, and all he really wanted was to crawl back under the covers and sleep for another year or so. They’d gone to bed early the night before to make up for the insanely late night in Cambridge, but it hadn’t been enough.
He couldn’t brush off his student, though, especially since she was a friend of the store owner. She might try to have Shane fired if he pissed her off, and she was way too easy to piss off. With another yawn, he pushed himself up off the floor and gathered his clothes so he wouldn’t have to return to the bedroom after his shower. Thaniel didn’t have to work until noon, so Shane saw no reason to wake him.
After several minutes of lukewarm water streaming over his head and body, most of the sleep fog cleared from Shane’s brain. He yanked on his Love Like Vampires T-shirt, the tamer version without the blood dripping from the vampire’s fangs, and a pair of khaki shorts that would keep him cool in the already ridiculously hot weather while looking professional enough that no one would complain.
He left the bathroom and inhaled the mellow aroma of coffee. Bryan had probably already left for his shift at the diner, and unless he was being especially cruel, he’d left the coffee maker on with the pot mostly full. One good thing about having a cook for a roommate—food and coffee were nearly always ready and waiting.
Shane stumbled into the kitchen and found a nearly-full pot of coffee and a plate of pancakes. He’d never figured out how Bryan enjoyed cooking so early in the morning. Shane could barely manage to pour cereal when he first woke up.
He ate two pancakes with his hands, not bothering with butter or syrup, and gulped down a mug of coffee. Mondays sucked. Especially Mondays after gigs.
In the bedroom, his phone blared the opening chords of “Bite Me,” one of his favorites of the songs he’d written.
He ran into the bedroom in time to see Thaniel smack the phone onto the floor. “Fucking shit, man.”
“Yeah. Sorry. Forgot about it.” Shane picked up the phone and checked the display.
The number had a Boston area code.
As he hit the button to answer, the call disconnected.
“Shit!” He hit the caller ID button instead to return the call.
Thaniel jumped onto his bed, landing on his stomach, and glared at Shane. “It’s too fucking early.”
“That was the manager, I think.” Frantically, Shane tried to make his trembling fingers hit the right button.
His voicemail tone pinged, and he gave up on the call and keyed in his mailbox code instead. Thaniel groaned and dragged his pillow over his head. Shane flipped him a middle finger and left the room.
“I’m trying to reach Shane McCarthy.” The recorded voice was definitely that of the manager. Shane’s heart sped up. “This is Norton Shaw. It’s Monday morning at about eight-fifteen. I had a chance yesterday to watch the videos your band has posted online, and I am impressed. I’m still not entirely sure we’d be a good fit, but I would like to meet with you and the other band members to discuss the possibilities. Please give me a call back when you have a chance. No hurry.”
He had left his number as well, and Shane dialed it quickly then hung up before the call connected. Despite his racing pulse and the urge to scream for joy, he couldn’t call Norton back yet. Not without talking to the other guys. Shane made most of the decisions because the band let him, but this was too important for him to decide on his own.
Going to Boston to meet with Norton would mean he, Thaniel, and Bryan would have to take time off from work, and Todd would have to find someone to watch his kid. The trip couldn’t happen without planning.
“Shit.” In frustration, he tightened his fingers around the phone. If the thing hadn’t been almost new, he would have thrown it. The band had to stick together to get anywhere, but persuading them to be together on anything showed Shane what people meant when they talked about herding cats.