Welcome to November, and to my newest release from Torquere Press!
One of my favorite editors, Vincent Diamond, invited me to be part of his latest anthology, Horsing Around. Sexy cowboys and their horses, how could I say no?
The entire anthology’s available for $6.99, or you can purchase my story, Old Scars, separately for $2.99. The anthology as well as my story will be available shortly at all the usual distributors, but it’s available right now at Torquere. Here’s an excerpt:
Parker’s stables sat on ten acres of desert real estate a few miles north of Reno. He boarded a few horses and gave riding lessons sometimes, but his real joy was working with wild mustangs rounded up by the BLM. A few of those wild horses were sent to the prison, where inmates with an aptitude and the right attitude were assigned to work with the horses under the supervision of professional trainers.
Jerry had been one of those inmates.
Parker had filled in as a trainer at the prison when Lyle Gibbons, the regular trainer and a long-time friend of Parker’s, broke his arm in two places and his collar bone when he took a bad spill at the Reno Rodeo. That’s where Parker had met Jerry. Parker’s substitute job had only lasted six weeks, and that had been five years ago. He hadn’t seen or heard from Jerry since.
Jerry grinned as Parker got close. “You looked good out there,” he said. “For an old man.”
Parker snorted. Jerry had always teased him about being an old man, not that Parker was really all that old. A lifetime spent on the back of a horse beneath the desert sun tended to lend more lines to a man’s face than the simple passage of time warranted.
Parker knew Jerry was pushing forty, which made him only ten years or so younger than Parker, but he didn’t look it. Even back when they first met, Parker had a feeling Jerry would always look like a kid.
The fact that Jerry had hair now threw Parker off a little. A lot of men Parker had seen in prison, Jerry included, wore their hair shorn close to the skull. This Jerry, the man who’d ditched his blue denim shirt for a black tee shirt, had brown hair the color of old leather cut medium length and combed forward with the hair at the front brushed up. Combined with Jerry’s infectious grin, the one with just a hint of an amused smirk that lurked at the corners of his mouth, the haircut made him look like a schoolyard rowdy.
The eyes, though. Jerry’s eyes were the most expressive damn things Parker had ever seen. Large and as blue as Lake Tahoe on a sunny summer day, Jerry’s eyes had been what drew Parker in, then and now.
Don’t fall for one of these guys, Lyle had told him the night before his first day at the prison. They’re cons, don’t you forget that. They’re good at using people. Just because they’re good with the horses don’t mean anything. They’re in prison because they did something that hurt somebody else. Remember that. Don’t let one of those bastards hurt you.
Parker had never asked Jerry what he did to land in prison, and Jerry had never volunteered. It didn’t matter. For months after Parker’s temp job at the prison was over, he still went to bed at night dreaming of Jerry’s eyes and imagining what ifs he told himself he’d never let come true.
And now here Jerry was, teasing him like no time at all had gone by. Well, two could play that game.
“They let you out for good behavior?” Parker asked. “The definition of ‘good’ must have changed some.”