Adrian Rivera lives as he damn well pleases, defying his Lavender Shores family to spend his days farming the beautiful Northern California land. Not one to daydream of true love and romance, Adrian’s social life has always been filled with sex and plenty of good times. Harrison Getty went from NFL star quarterback to America’s gay heartthrob, to reality TV star—with his wedding day broadcast live on national television. But Harrison feels trapped in a Hollywood life dictated by others. To breathe again, he runs from it all… Adrian’s attraction to Harrison has been building for months—even as Harrison prepared to marry another man. Lightning strikes between them, stirring emotions and passions as Adrian finds “the one,” a love that’s meant to be. But can Harrison stop running long enough to know his own heart? Amid scandals and betrayals, Adrian and Harrison struggle to grow their new love even as life’s storms threaten to shatter it all…
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I began to pace like I was the one getting married.
What a thought.
I was suddenly aware that Harrison had been in the bathroom an exorbitantly long time. Maybe the guy really was sick.
I padded over to the bathroom door and knocked quietly.
There was no answer.
I knocked again.
Still no answer. Despite his star status, Harrison wasn’t one to be rude. He really had looked sick and white as a sheet. Maybe he’d passed out….
I tested the door handle, and it turned. I nudged it open and poked my head in. “Harrison? Are you alri—”
My words fell away. Harrison stood in front of the bathroom vanity, his hands gripping the edge of the counter, and his brown eyes met mine in the reflection of the mirror.
I didn’t even consider backing out and leaving him. Without a second’s hesitation, I stepped in and shut the door behind me.
The man could’ve easily been a Greek god broken free from his marble casings. But not in that moment. He looked… terrified.
Made sense. He was getting married.
“Jitters?” Dumb question.
He didn’t answer at first, just took a deep breath. Finally, he nodded.
I attempted a smile. “I hear that’s normal.” Actually, all my friends who had gotten married were so sickeningly in love that it was disgusting. I doubted any one of them had jitters. “Want me to get you something? Water? Champagne?”
Harrison shook his head.
“I saw Robert Kelly with a flask earlier. I’m not sure what’s in it, but knowing Robert, it’s something that’ll make you feel good.”
The corners of Harrison’s lips curved into a smile in the mirror, and he released the edge of the marble counter long enough to turn and face me. “Of course Robert Kelly brought a flask to the wedding.”
Speech! That was a good sign. “A rainbow one, no less.”
A little snort. “As expected. It is Lavender Shores, gay Mecca and all.”
I shrugged. I imagined Robert would drink out of a rainbow flask no matter where he was. I started to make a joke, then noticed the sweat dampening Harrison’s collar. “You feeling okay?”
“I look that bad, huh?” Another half-hearted grin. “I thought maybe my reflection was lying to me.”
I considered sugarcoating. But we were going to be on TV any second. “I’ll go find you another shirt. No harm done. You’ll look like America’s gay sweetheart again in no time.” I reached for the bathroom door handle again.
“You really have heard that it’s normal?”
I turned back to him. “What?”
“Having jitters before the wedding. That’s normal, right?”
There was a desperation in his voice that had me taking a few steps closer. “Yeah. Anybody in their right mind would feel that way before they walked down the aisle. Especially when doing so in front of the whole damn world.”
Okay, maybe that wasn’t helpful. Dammit, I needed to do a better job. I closed the distance and gripped both of his shoulders. Dear God, the man was all muscle. I forced myself to meet his eyes. “This is normal. Anyone would be nervous. Just breathe.”
He took a breath. It was shallow and shaky, but it was a breath. And it was progress.
I gave a little shake to my grip, like I imagined his coach might’ve done. He needed a pep talk. “You’re gonna be fine. You got this. Keep your eye on the ball.” Maybe that was a little bit too literal. “You’re marrying the man you love. That’s the only thing that matters. You and Will. Trust me, I know. I’m seeing soulmate after fucking soulmate… er… sorry… I’m seeing soulmate after soulmate get married lately. I can tell you, from what I see, it’s worth every bit of work and fear there is to get to that other side.”
There. That was pretty good.
It seemed Harrison thought so too. He took a deeper breath.
“Just let everything else fade away. Don’t worry about the cameras. Don’t worry about the crowd. Don’t worry about anything. Just keep your eyes on Will the whole time. He’s the only thing that matters. You get through this and then the two of you have the rest of your lives together.”
Harrison blinked a couple of times. Then he lifted his hands and placed them on either side of my face.
Rosalind Abel grew up tending chickens along side her sweet and faithful Chow, Lord Elgin. While her fantasy of writing novels was born during her teen years, she never would have dreamed she’d one day publish steamy romances about gorgeous men. However, sometimes life turns out better than planned. In between crafting scorching sex scenes and helping her men find their soul mate, Rosalind enjoys cooking, collecting toys, and making the best damn scrapbooks in the world (this claim hasn’t been proven, but she’s willing to put good money on it). She adores MM Romance and the power it has to sweep the reader away into worlds filled with passion, steam, and love. Rosalind also enjoys her collection of plot bunnies, and welcomes new fuzzy ones in her home all the time, so feel free to send any adorable ones her way.