Love Like Vampires, Dreamspinner Press, July 30, 2014
ISBN 978-1-62798-864-3 (ebook); 978-1-62798-863-6 (print)
Joyfully Reviewed says, “Love Like Vampires has a strong romance and more poignant moments than first expected. A rich, full story.”
All Thaniel Robichaud has ever wanted is for his band to hit the big-time. All Shane McCarthy has ever wanted is Thaniel.
Friends since childhood, Thaniel and Shane started making music together while still in junior high school. In the ten years since, they’ve taken their band, Love Like Vampires, from struggling over chords in Thaniel’s basement to headlining at clubs, and recently they opened for one of rock’s biggest names. Along the way, Shane stunned Thaniel with a proclamation of love, and when Thaniel returned his feelings, their relationship gave them the strength to weather the rough patches. But with the band about to break apart, it may not be enough to hold everything together. Their dream is slipping through their fingers just as they’re perched on the cusp of success.
They ended up doing more glad-handing and chatting with happy little teenagers while they dismantled their setup and carried things outside. Shane put on his happy face. Fuck Thaniel. If the guy couldn’t recognize good news when he heard it, he was a goddamn idiot. Shane would simply keep doing what he was doing, and sooner or later Thaniel would appreciate him. Shane wanted the band to go far even if Thaniel didn’t.
The thing was, Thaniel did want it. That was the main reason Shane wanted it. For Thaniel.
He glanced at Thaniel bending to lift one of the amps into the back of the van. For more than ten years, everything Shane had done had been about Thaniel, and the guy didn’t even realize it. They were friends. Brothers, almost. But he sure as hell didn’t have brotherly feelings for Thaniel.
Loving Thaniel was completely pointless. Shane couldn’t tell anyone. Aside from Thaniel’s sexuality, if Shane spoke up he ran the risk of destroying the friendship. Shane had been reminding himself of that for years, and it hadn’t done any good so far, but he would keep telling himself anyway. One of these days, maybe it would stick. It couldn’t hurt.
Meanwhile, he would keep doing everything he could for the band, for Thaniel’s sake. He’d always envied Thaniel’s life. The guy’s family gave him everything he needed and most of what he wanted. But Shane wanted to give Thaniel even more. Thaniel just had something about him that made people want to give him good things. And Thaniel never took any of it for granted. That was the best thing about him.
“Stupid fucking sap.” Fortunately no one was around to hear him bitching at himself.
They finished loading their equipment and headed to the hotel where two of the other bands had gone in on a suite so they wouldn’t have to drive home. Of course they’d invited everyone to come and party. That was what happened after shows.
The suite was a lot smaller than the one Jareth East had had, and when Shane and the guys arrived it was already packed. They pushed their way in, and some people moved aside when they saw who was trying to get into the room.
The smells of alcohol, cigarettes, and weed filled the air. Shane doubled over coughing, and Thaniel patted him on the back. “Breathe, dude. This is going to be epic.”
“Yeah.” Shane tried to take a deep breath, but the smoke was too thick and all he managed was more coughing.
“Hey!” Thaniel raised his voice to be heard over the buzz in the room. “Someone bring my guy a drink here!”
Even in the middle of a coughing fit, and even knowing Thaniel didn’t mean anything by it, hearing him call Shane his guy warmed Shane clear through. Not to mention making him a little horny as he daydreamed about what it would be like if Thaniel did mean it. Shane had shut down his libido completely for the past week, and now, surrounded by people who were drinking and smoking and hoping to get laid, it came roaring back.
He would find someone to hook up with that night. Hell, he hadn’t managed it after the show the week before, when they’d been surrounded by people who probably would have given him a chance. Thaniel had gotten laid. So now it was Shane’s turn.
Someone held a red cup in front of him. Still coughing, he took it and sipped. Rum and cola. It burned his throat but he didn’t give a shit. At least it killed some of the smoke coating his throat.
“Better?” Thaniel bent and spoke close to Shane’s ear. He actually sounded worried.
“Yeah.” Shane tried the breathing thing again and had better luck. “Thanks.”
“Yeah.” Thaniel grinned. “Don’t want to scare off the ladies. Or guys, in your case.”
“Fucking right.” Shane took another sip.
“Especially if fucking’s involved.” Thaniel snorted. “See anyone interesting?”
Shane paused. Another cough wracked his body, and he threw his arm over his mouth to muffle it and his smile. Not that he was a big fan of coughing, but now he had a break to think of how to answer Thaniel’s question.
No one’s as interesting as you.
The only one I see is you.
Fuck me, asshole, in case you’ve missed my New England-sized crush on you since we were twelve.