Before I get into my review, I want to say that I remember this day very well. Before August 23, 2011, all the quakes felt here in the Washington Metropolitan area (MD-DC-VA) were very minor. Most people were never even aware that they happened, so uneventful were they, along the lines of 2.1 or lower on the Richter Scale. So I, along with everyone else, was not prepared for the shaking Mother Nature gave us that day.
I was sitting at the computer when my terriers went nuts, running around my chair and barking like mad (I know, I know…how is that different from normal terrier behavior but trust me it was). My first thought was that the neighbor’s Golden Retriever was loose again, something my little pack finds very offensive. But then the house started to shake. I am not talking little gentle shakes. I am talking picture swinging, vase walking shakes.
So of course, I run out the front door, why I don’t know. Perhaps looking for confirmation that no Transformers were headed over the horizon, whatever. Everything looked normal. Back inside and scanning the news online, I quickly learned that we had a 5.9 earthquake and it was felt over a large geographical area even up into New York. The videos started streaming online. I watched amazed. Now almost a year later, the Washington Monument is still closed for repairs, the Washington Cathedral is looking at years to repair the wonderful stone statues and blocks destroyed that day as the money needed continues to climb. In the small town of Louisa, Virginia near the epicenter, schools and buildings are still closed, the damage unbelievable. Most of all, we lost the certainty that large earthquakes only happened on the West Coast, that it could never happen to us. Mother Nature 1, Humans 0. It does tend to work out that way, we just forget that it does.
So I loved reading a short story with the earthquake figuring into the plot. And even better? Kari Gregg is donating 100 percent of her profits from this story to The Trevor Project which provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention to LGBTQ youth. So much applause and snaps to Kari Gregg for such a wonderful gift. Now on to the review.
Rating: 4.5 stars
Eric Mulholand loves his boyfriend, Kyle, even though Kyle seems determined to destroy their apartment through his attempts at DIY projects. Kyle Armentrout is a contradiction in so many ways. Tall, nordic, handsome, twice divorced, and father of five. After 20 years of repressing his true nature, Kyle is now madly in love with a man and a complete bottom in the bed. These are facts that are still taking some adjustment. So to compensate for a perceived “less manly” self image, Kyle has decided that being a Mr. Fixit is the answer. Only problem is that he can’t fix things, anything to be exact. And the plumbing, the electricity, even Eric’s tires have suffered. So as hot as Kyle looks in a tool belt, Eric has had enough.
One argument leads to some very hot makeup sex. And then the earth shakes. It doesn’t take either man very long to realize that there are emotional earthquakes as well as the physical ones, and they have just been through both. And survived both with their love and apartment well intact. Such a great metaphor as nothing can shake a physical foundation like an earthquake and nothing can shake up a person from their emotional moorings or foundation like love can. Great characters who cracked me up while making me understand how fragile relationships and self images can be. I wish the story had been longer but no matter, I enjoyed my stay with both of them.
Available from Riptide Publishing, Amazon, ARE.
And check in with The Trevor Project. You won’t be sorry.