A gift of a man for one night. A promise of so much more.
When Rick Thatcher’s beloved aunt leaves him the run-down Haven Hotel, he’s amazed to find a group of young men running an escorting business out of it. Intrigued and impressed, he allows them to stay. But sacrifices have to be made to keep the hotel running. The hotel is always short of funds, and the guys… they’re sexy, they’re fun, they’re loyal friends. But they can also be a bunch of trouble. Rick has no time left for romance.
Until the night Eliot Walker arrives at the Haven, naïve but brave, looking to discover what it’s like to be an openly gay man at last. He wants to spend the night with a man, one who can excite and guide him. But an escort? He’s nervous of what he’ll find.
He finds Rick. Just the kind of man he’d choose to have his first experiences with, if it was possible. And from Rick’s point of view – on this one special night, and for this one special man he can’t take his eyes off – why shouldn’t it be?
If only this could be more than one night. But their potential happiness and the Haven’s security may already be under serious threat.
When he chuckled, I took a chance and rested my hand on top of his on the bar. His answering smile was fleeting, his expression still thoughtful.
But me? The prickle of electricity up my own arm made my head spin.
I cleared my throat and continued. “We consider every request of equal merit, believe me. No one will judge you for whatever you do or don’t want to do.”
He frowned a little. “How can you manage that? I mean, you have no idea what I’ll say, what I want. How can anyone here prepare for that?”
I was intrigued, because he really seemed to care. “It’s what the guys are used to. They welcome it. They’re all single when they work here. They don’t always stay with us, they sometimes leave the hotel for other jobs, other lives. Sometimes, they return later. It’s always a mutual decision. But when they’re here, they’re available for male guests who are similarly single, and they have an unfettered and eager desire for what they do. For sex. They like to please.” His blush crept up from his neck, pinking the edges of his ears. I bet they would feel warm to the touch of my tongue. What was happening to me? “Will you give me your name?”
He didn’t hesitate. “Eliot Walker. Oh. Wait. I mean… Do people try to book in with false identities?”
I chuckled. “Sometimes. That’s not necessarily the clientele we want. We are totally confidential, but we must have genuine details. I can show you our Data Protection and Privacy policies if you like.”
This time his laugh bubbled out happily. “I’ve already checked out your website. All the right legalities, without going into actual detail. Very skilfully done. And I’ve checked your credit rating.”
I raised my eyebrows. “That’s flattering.”
“That I checked out the place to see if it’s legal?”
“That you checked us out as a genuine business. Albeit one with an industry code of ‘other ancillary services’.” The hotel’s website may have been light on detail, but Arne had made sure everything was in place web-wise, at least behind the scenes, and one of our regular escorts, Liam, had a brother who was a lawyer. Pleasure still had to be protected.
“So.” Eliot worried his lower lip. “What happens next?”
“You’ll be recommended a room, one that hopefully has the right kind of vibe for you. You can go on through, whenever you’re ready.”
He nodded and took a deep breath as if bracing himself for whatever happened next. “Well, I’ve made my choice. I’m ready now.”
“Okay.” I peered over his head, trying to see where Arne was sitting, so he could check the diary…
Eliot’s eager tone recaptured my attention. Did he have another question?
But he just slid off the stool and smiled that smile again, the one that made my heart race and my cock start to thicken. “After you,” he said, gesturing airily towards the hallway.
This is book 2 in a series but can be read as a stand alone. I did add book 1 to my to be read pile, although I don’t know if I will actually read it.
The story was…nice. A recently out of the closet man is gifted a night with an escort. Except the escort he chooses isn’t really the owner of the hotel where the escorts rent rooms. The chemistry between the men is kind of tepid. I feel like I didn’t get to know either man really well.
That lack of chemistry made the conflict that Rick faced a bit far fetched. Would what happened to Rick happen in real life? All of the time! Will the solution to that happen? Eh, I seriously doubt it.
I needed more story. More about Rick, more about Eliot, more of them together. There just wasn’t enough.
3 Pieces of Eye Candy
Stella Shaw is the penname for an author of MM romance. Her new Rent Boy Romance series: Love at the Haven launched in January 2021.