Pride Month: FREE Gay Fiction Excerpt ‘The Rescuer’
Here’s another excerpt from my novel about gay romance and animal rescue. I enjoyed writing this book immensely. I wish every book I wrote could be focused on animals. And this one has a few twists and turns that make it a little different. I would love to see an animal rescue facility where it’s more like an animal hotel, where all the animals are treated as if they are human and every animal is treated with respect. I hope I accomplished that with this book. I hope I gave that focus to the main character. I’m never really certain until years later and there’s more feedback. I’m still learning things about books I wrote that were published 10 years ago.
In any event, the excerpt is below, and here’s a link to Amazon. This book is also sold on Smashwords and other venues, however, Amazon is still king. This excerpt is totally SFW and I didn’t have to censor one single word.
Teen Fired From Christian Camp For Being Gay
Here’s a story about a gay teen who was fired from a Christian camp. I know it’s wrong. No one should ever be fired from any job anywhere because they are gay. But I do sometimes wonder why any gay person would want to be in a Christian environment like that. I can’t imagine anything worse than to be surrounded by a bunch of far right Christians. I’ve never had to worry about getting fired from a Christian camp because I never have, and never will, go anywhere near a Christian camp.
With that said, it’s still discrimination and of course I agree with him in a general sense. No one should ever be treated this way. And it’s interesting because I have never seen a gay person discriminate against a Christian. Never. I feel bad for the poor kid.
“I wanted to like cry because I grew up going to the Firs since I was like five or six years old,” Taylor told local ABC news. “I’m very angry with them. It’s hard to forgive someone or a group who denied you for who you are. If you’re going to teach love and acceptance shouldn’t you be able to accept all staff members from all parts of the community?”
Here’s a link. The right wing Christians I know would call firing this kid this free speech and their right to make choices, and they would defend the actions of this camp. I just call it downright mean discrimination. This poor kid was not doing anything wrong.
In the weeks that followed the fund raising event, Keith decided to focus more on Misty. He was seriously thinking of leaving the SPCA to join Tom at Richardson Homes and he wanted to make sure Misty was going to be okay when he left. He started spending more time with her alone before the SPCA opened each morning. It was quieter and there were no other humans around to distract him from his goal.
And his goal was simple. He wanted to reach out to this magnificent dog and get her to a point where she would be socialized enough to be adopted by the right family. He knew the potential was there, even if no one else could see it, but he had to figure out a way to get to her. The best way he knew how to do that was through patience and love.
He knew Misty trusted him. He’d reached a point where he could now enter her pen, walk up to her slowly, and give her a treat. She didn’t cower or recoil. Although she didn’t wag her tail and jump around like other dogs, she now took the treat and ate it quietly while he sat there and spoke to her as if she were another human. Sometimes she would send him a sideways glance, or tip her disfigured head on an angle. He didn’t know if she could understand him or not. He obviously wasn’t expecting her to reply to anything he said. He simply believed that by speaking to her, with a soft voice and calming words, she would sense that he wanted to help her.
Of course everyone at the SPCA spoke to the animals in their own way. Carson usually complained to them about what was bothering him, as if they could actually heal his emotional wounds. Zac liked to laugh and joke around with them in an offhanded way, as if they could amuse him. One of the older volunteers liked to tell them all how beautiful they were. But no one ever actually sat down and had a conversation with the animals, and Keith wanted to keep his conversations with Misty private so the rest of the staff wouldn’t think he’d lost his mind.
One Friday morning he brought Misty bacon and sat down on a small pink tufted stool he’d placed next to her doggie bed. He set the bacon down on her bed, and when she leaned forward to eat it he patted the top of her silky gray head and said, “You know, Misty, I might not be around here forever. So we have to start getting you used to walking on a leash. That’s an important part of being ready to be adopted by a nice family. People want to know that they can take you for walks to the park without you freaking out on them.”
While he continued to talk to Misty, encouraging her as if she could understand every word he said, he heard a noise coming from behind and he turned fast to see what it was. When he saw Zac standing at the gate, listening to every word he said, he stood up fast and said, “I was just checking in on her. I wasn’t actually talking to her. I mean, I know she can’t understand me or anything like that. I’m not a lunatic.”
Zac smiled. “You don’t have to explain to me. I have my own little conversations with them all the time. I think it’s important, and I think they understand.”
“You do?” he felt a huge wave of relief.
“Of course I do,” Zac said. “I think we communicate with animals on a different level than we do with humans, but it’s just as important and I think they appreciate it.”
“Well that’s a huge relief,” Keith said. “For a minute I was worried you would think I was some kind of idiot who talked to himself.”
Zac turned to leave, but before he walked away he sent him backward glance and said, “You know, it’s none of my business, but I think you worry too much about what other people think. The only thing we should worry about is what we think of ourselves, not what other people think.”
Keith sent him a smile. “You’re very wise for someone so young.”
Zac shrugged and turned to leave. “I’ll see you later. I’m training that new volunteer this morning.”
While he’d been speaking to Zac, Keith didn’t realize that Misty had climbed out of her bed. When he turned around, she was standing a few feet away from him, staring up at him and wagging her tail.
He smiled and she walked over to him and licked his hand. Her tail was still wagging and he knew he’d made a small break through that morning. He went down on his knees, wrapped his arms around her neck, and gave her a huge hug. “That’s my girl,” he said. “I knew you’d start to come around eventually. And don’t you worry about anything. If no one ever comes along to adopt you, you’ll always have me.”
* * * * *
Later that same day, Keith felt so good about the way Misty was responding to him, he didn’t even mind that he had to go to an anniversary party for Tom and Delilah. They hadn’t been married that long, and it wasn’t an important milestone anniversary, but Delilah was the self-indulgent type who loved to throw a huge party at an expensive restaurant for the most mundane occasions. Her social life was her main focus and her yearly anniversary party was really designed to get her invited to more parties during the year.
When he pulled up to the familiar restaurant he parked in the back. He walked to the entrance and found that most of the guys were wearing formal tuxedos. Keith had decided to wear a pair of brand new tight beige skinny jeans, a white cotton shirt with little blue paisley designs that hugged his torso, and a new pair of two toned wing tip shoes he’d recently purchased. He’d been having anonymous sex with a 30 year old hipster who worked in a trendy men’s clothing store two towns away, and he’d felt obligated to buy new clothes from the guy. He didn’t mind spending the money, and the sex with this guy was so interesting he often went home with bruises on the backs of his legs. He found the whole hipster look sexy, even the guy’s bushy beard and man bun. But more than that, they always had sex in public, right in the store dressing room, while there were customers browsing around out front. Of course they were discreet and they kept the dressing room curtain closed at all times. It wasn’t as though the hipster fucked him right over the counter next to the cash register. It was more about fantasy exhibitionism and the element of danger that excited them the most. No one was ever offended, and no one ever knew what they were doing.
While Keith was at the bar getting a drink before he had to find his table, his brother came over and gave him a hug. “Well there you are. I was worried you wouldn’t show up.”
Keith smiled. “I wouldn’t miss your anniversary for the world,” he said. He’d never like lying to people.
Tom looked him up and down and said, “I hope you can sit down in those jeans. They’re a little snug. Is this a new look for you or something? You’re usually a lot more conservative.”
Keith shrugged. He didn’t want to go into detail about his sexual relationship with the hipster at the clothing store with Tom. “I just felt like a change. And it’s not as if I’m wearing red sequins.” He thought he looked rather conservative. The wing tip shoes were two tone…brown leather and white buckskin…but even they weren’t that unusual.
Tom patted his shoulder and said, “You look fine. I’ll see you later. I want to ask Delilah a question.”
As Tom turned to leave, Keith glanced across the room and pressed his palm to his chest. He saw Chet standing next to a long black grand piano, lifting a martini glass with one hand and waving in his direction with the other. He hadn’t expected to see Chet there that night and he wished he could push a button and disappear through a trap door in the floor. He knew that wasn’t going to happen, so he picked up his drink and crossed to where Chet was standing.
Chet set his drink on the piano and gave him a hug. He stepped back and looked him up and down. “Well look at you. If your pants and shirt were any tighter you’d split the seams.”
“I’ll take that as a compliment,” Keith said.
Chet reached forward to touch his chest and said, “It is a compliment. You look great. I’d never guess you only worked in an SPCA in that outfit.”
Even though that comment made him want to kick something, he smiled and said, “Thank you. You look nice, too.” He was wearing the expected tuxedo, most likely a famous designer that Keith wouldn’t have cared much about.
“I see you’re alone,” Chet said. “Or is your date somewhere else?”
Keith knew he was fishing for information, and he had nothing to hide. “I’m alone. I didn’t bring a date. I’m not seeing anyone seriously. How about you?” There was no reason to boast about all the good sex he was having with strange men.
“I’m not with anyone tonight either. Delilah invited me and said it was fine to come alone. We’ve become very good friends lately. We do everything together. She’s wonderful.”
This was news to Keith. He’d always thought Chet was more of a casual friend, not a best friend. Keith didn’t speak to Delilah regularly and he didn’t know who was included in her social circle. In truth, Keith tried to avoid speaking to her at all. “Yes. She’s a treat.”
“Oh no,” Chet said. He jumped to the left. “I can’t believe he’s here.”
“My ex,” Chet said. “Well, he’s not officially my ex. We still date each other. But I had no idea he was coming. He’s a freelance architect who works with your brother sometimes. I should have known.”
“Oh.” He had no idea Chet had been dating someone regularly and he had no idea how to reply. It sounded too complicated to explain in just a few minutes.
A second later, a nice looking guy in his mid-30s walked up to them and reached out to hug Chet. He put his back to Keith, threw his arms around Chet, and kissed him right on the mouth without caring who saw him. Keith looked up at the ceiling. If his pants hadn’t been so damn tight he would have put his hands in his pockets. Even though he knew it was wrong to feel this way, he had not reached the point where he felt comfortable kissing a man that way in a room filled with all those straight people.
The guy stepped back and Chet gestured to Keith. “Darvin, this is my ex, Keith. Keith, this is Darvin.” Then he giggled as if he found it all so amusing.
“Well, it’s nice to meet you, sweetie,” Darvin said. He threw his hand in Keith’s direction and it looked as though he might curtsy. He spoke fast, with a heavy lisp that sounded as if he’d just called Keith tweetie.
Keith wasn’t sure whether to kiss his hand or shake his fingers, so he just stood there smiling and said, “It’s nice to meet you.” He was actually a well-built guy, with a nice nose and a square jaw. His wrists were a little limp, and he batted his eye lashes a few too many times, but Keith had never been one to judge people at a glance. If Chet hadn’t been Keith’s ex, they might have been good friends.
“We should all get together,” Darvin said. He squeezed Keith’s bicep in a harmless, playful way. “It could be loads of fun, all three of us at the same time.”
“Yeah, well, that’s not going to happen,” Chet said. “Why don’t you go back to where you came from and we’ll talk later.”
Keith blinked. Chet’s dismissive tone reminded him of the way Chet used to speak to him when they were together. Apparently, Chet hadn’t changed much.
Darvin lowered his eyes and said, “Okay. We’ll talk later. If you need anything, Chet, let me know. I’ll get you anything you need.”
“I’m good, thanks,” Chet said, without even looking at him. “Go talk to someone else now. I’ll find you.”
Then Darvin left them without saying another word. The way Chet spoke to Darvin brought back so many memories of the way Chet had dismissed Keith and bossed him around, Keith started to feel hot and he knew he had to get out of there. It wasn’t because he felt anger or dislike for Chet. It was much worse than that, and far scarier. He started to feel the same old attraction to him and his hands felt shaky, and all the old feelings and emotions started rushing through his mind. He just felt like running.
When Darvin was gone, Chet leaned in a little closer and asked, “So are you still thinking about changing jobs? You’re such a strong talented man, and so capable of doing anything. You could be very successful working in the family business with your brother.”
Keith inhaled Chet’s cologne and he started to feel vulnerable and submissive. His deep voice came off smooth and alluring. He felt the urge to kiss Chet, and that made him worry even more. There was a time when he would have done anything to please Chet, and he wasn’t sure he wanted to revisit that part of his life again. In the same respect, he still had strong feelings for him and he didn’t know what to do.
So instead of replying, he pulled his phone out of his back pocket and gaped at the screen. “Oh, no. I have to leave. I just got a text. I’ll see you later, Chet. You have a good time and please tell Tom and Delilah there was an emergency at the SPCA and I had to leave. Tell them I’ll call them tomorrow. I have to head over there right now.”
Before Chet could reply, Keith turned with a sudden jerk and walked toward a set of French doors that would lead him out to a terrace so he wouldn’t have to speak with anyone at the front entrance. He kept walking and didn’t glance back until he reached the jeep.