Karenna Colcroft back again with the first of three excerpts I’ll be sharing today from Love Like Vampires, my new male/male contemporary romance. It officially releases on Wednesday, but is available now for pre-order from Dreamspinner Press in either ebook or paperback.
The roar of adrenaline and rush of the crowd. Or something. High from excitement and fame, Shane didn’t even care whether he had it right. He and his band, Love Like Vampires, had just finished opening for Jareth frigging East, one of the biggest names in the business.
A small-time band from Maine had played the show of a fucking lifetime. How could he care about something as menial as a cliché?
And the audience had loved every second of it. They had screamed. They had danced. A couple of cuties in the front row had even tried to grab Thaniel, the lead singer, when he leaned toward them during the band’s ballad “Your Love Staked My Heart.”
It wasn’t an unusual response, but they weren’t at their usual little club. They were at TD frigging Garden in Boston. Opening for Jareth East. If Shane repeated that to himself enough, maybe he would be convinced this wasn’t all a wonderful dream.
As Love Like Vampires left the stage to let Jareth’s crew set up, Shane felt like his feet barely touched the floor. His heart raced and he was panting for air. He was so soaked with sweat his hair dripped, but none of it mattered.
The show had been fucking amazing. Every note, every lyric, every beat had been perfect. Not a single mistake. Other than Bryan, their drummer, they’d all been nervous as fuck before the show. Thaniel had almost had a goddamn panic attack sitting out in the van, and Shane had had to score him some weed from one of Jareth’s roadies so the singer could calm down.
Then again, stage fright for Thaniel wasn’t unusual either. Once Thaniel walked onstage he loved it, but every single time they had a show, he freaked out beforehand. Only the guys in the band knew, and only Shane realized how bad Thaniel’s panic truly was. He kept the secret, along with never letting on to Thaniel how much he admired him for pushing past the stage fright and putting on damn good shows.
In the end, the nerves hadn’t mattered. They’d played their best show ever. And watching Thaniel work the stage and the audience was even better. Shane could have stared at the singer all night. Half the people who’d watched probably wished Thaniel would drag them into bed, and Shane definitely counted himself in that group.
Even in the postshow haze, he had to roll his eyes at his fucking ridiculous crush. He’d had a thing for Thaniel for years. It was never going to happen. By now, he should have gotten reality through his head. They were friends and Thaniel was straight. End of story.
Backstage, Thaniel grabbed Shane in a bear hug that would have been a hell of a lot more pleasant without the sweat soaking both of them. “Holy fuck, man, that was amazing!” Thaniel jumped up and down, still holding Shane.
“Hell yeah.” Shane grinned and pulled away. The sweat was bad enough. The fact that excitement, adrenaline, and being held against Thaniel’s wiry body made him hard was worse. He just hoped Thaniel wouldn’t notice.
“They motherfucking loved us! Yes!” The keyboard player, Jace, tried a chest bump with Thaniel. Thaniel stepped back and Jace almost fell flat on his face. Shane stifled a laugh. The kid always got way too hyper after shows, and sometimes before and during them. And often during rehearsals. There were times Shane wanted to clobber him, but the band kept Jace around because he was a damn good musician.
They were all damn good. That was why Jareth East had personally invited them to play.