On Tour with Ariel Tachna and ‘Talking in Code’ (‘Recognition’ guest post)

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Talking in Code by Ariel Tachna
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reamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Paul Richmond

Available for Purchase at

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Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have Ariel Tachna here today talking about her latest story, Talking in Code. Welcome, Ariel!

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Talking in Code starts in media res. Eric, Tim, and Richard are already well and truly involved with each other, but the story includes references to moments before the book begins, moments that are not fully explored in the novel itself.

This is the third of those moments.

Recognition

“Some days I don’t know what to do with Newton,” Tim said as he climbed into the shower with Richard. It had been one hell of a mission, but they’d all made it home safe, and he couldn’t ask for more than that. “How hard is it to follow one simple order?”

Richard snorted as he directed the spray onto Tim’s back. “To listen to you talk about him, impossible.”

Tim flushed. He probably talked more about Eric than he should, but he couldn’t seem to stop. If Richard had noticed, though, he needed to tone it down.

“I’ve been on a lot of missions with him recently.”

“You have,” Richard agreed. He pulled Tim into his arms. Tim went willingly, tucking his head beneath Richard’s chin and resting against his broad chest. Other than their height, they were of a size, but it always felt like coming home to lean on Richard this way, like he was safe for a few hours in the craziness of their lives. “I’ve had to listen to you bitch about him after every one. It’s a damn good thing he’s good at his job, because he’s hell to work with, from what I can tell.”

“He’s not good at his job. He’s brilliant at it,” Tim said automatically. He’d spent months arguing with anyone who would listen, until he’d finally just said fuck it and started taking Eric on his own missions. He appreciated him even if none of the other team leaders seemed willing to acknowledge his effectiveness.

“So you’ve said. Repeatedly.”

“Is that a problem?” Tim asked, feeling defensive. He hadn’t done anything wrong by taking Eric under his wing. He’d just made sure they kept him as part of Strike Force Omega instead of losing him because of people who couldn’t see past his attitude.

“Not unless you tell me it’s one,” Richard replied easily.

Tim almost wished Richard would make an issue out of it. He could feel it between them, the silent elephant in the room, but he was the one in the wrong, not Richard. He was the one who couldn’t stop thinking about another man when he already had the best man in the world in his bed.

“Do you remember when we had shore leave in Bangkok?” Richard said. “We’d been together for a couple of years at that point, but nobody knew, not even our families.”

Tim remembered it. Well, parts of it. Other parts were nothing but a drunken haze. They’d been twenty-four. Stupidity was expected. “What about it?”

“You remember Chaisai, then. He caught my eye, you thought he was pretty too, and we spent several days taking turns fucking him senseless.”

“That was a long time ago. We haven’t done anything like that since then.”

“Only because nobody’s caught our eye,” Richard said. “Newton has caught your eye.”

“What about yours?” Tim asked, hardly daring to hope this conversation would go where he wanted it to.

“He’s easy on the eyes,” Richard replied with a shrug. “It would be no hardship to take him to bed.”

Tim swallowed hard. “He’s not just another fuck. He works for us, and I’d like him to keep working for us. It’s not worth losing his skills for a night of fun.”

“Maybe I’m reading you wrong, but I think it went past the realm of a night of fun a long time ago,” Richard said. “You kicked Warren’s ass after he insulted Newton one time too many and made such a fool of him that he quit. The last time you did that was for me. You talk about him all the time, even if half of it is complaints. You worry about him when he takes a mission with someone else, and you fuss over him worse than a mother hen with her chicks if he comes back with so much as a scratch on him.”

Tim froze. “And that doesn’t bother you?” he asked slowly.

To his surprise, Richard laughed. “It might if he didn’t look at you like you hung the moon, or if you had started treating me different because of it, but as it is, all I can think about is what a lucky bastard I am to have you when a young guy like Newton is lusting after you too. I can imagine it already. We’d get him in bed, and I’d just sit back and watch for a bit. Watch how much he wants you, all while knowing you’re mine. He can have you for a bit, but only because I agreed.”

The thought took Tim’s breath away. He could imagine it so easily—Richard’s gaze on him as he fucked Eric. Or maybe Eric was the one doing the fucking. Tim didn’t care. He’d take whatever he could get. Or if that wasn’t Eric’s thing, he’d try something else. He gave a damn fine blow job, according to Richard. And all the while, Richard would be there, leaning against the headboard, stroking himself while he watched, until his control finally snapped and he took charge. His big, hot hands on both of them as he directed their actions, bending them to his pleasure because they’d already seen to their own. “You’d do that for me?”

“I’d do it for us,” Richard corrected. “If that’s what you want. If you have a different scenario in mind, I’m all ears.”

Tim had more scenarios in mind than he was willing to admit, but one recurred more frequently than the others. “Him between us. Doesn’t matter what we’re doing to him, but sandwiched between us so that every thrust against him drives him into you and or drives him against me. So that whatever we do to him, we’re doing to each other by extension.”

“We can do that.”

God, he loved Richard. There weren’t words enough in any language he spoke—and he’d learned enough to be conversational in several—to say how much.

“And if one night isn’t enough?” Tim asked. “If this isn’t like Chaisai and something we just get out of our system?”

“Then we’ll need a bigger bed.”

Talking in Code blurb:

Some things crumble under pressure. Others are tempered by it instead. For three former soldiers, a tragedy might be the catalyst that binds them together—stronger than ever.

Richard Horn and Timothy Davenport met in the SEALs twenty years ago and have been lovers ever since. Now running their own paramilitary organization, Strike Force Omega, they work in the shadows to protect their country and its people. When Tim falls for Eric Newton, a deadly sniper and strategist on their team, Richard accepts that Tim’s heart is big enough for two men. He respects, admires, and even desires Eric enough to accept him into their relationship—and their bed—but he’s never been fully a part of what Eric and Tim share.

Then Eric is captured by terrorists and Tim is gravely injured in an op gone wrong, bringing Richard’s world crashing down around his ears. Even if he gets his men out alive, Eric must face the aftermath of months of physical and psychological torture—and without Tim to lean on, Eric’s PTSD is tearing him apart. Richard has to figure out the third leg of their triangle fast, or Tim won’t have a life to come back to.

About the Author

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When Ariel Tachna was twelve years old, she discovered two things: the French language and romance novels. Those two loves have defined her ever since. By the time she finished high school, she’d written four novels, none of which anyone would want to read now, featuring a young woman who was—you guessed it—bilingual. That girl was everything Ariel wanted to be at age twelve and wasn’t.

She now lives on the outskirts of Houston with her husband (who also speaks French), her kids (who understand French even when they’re too lazy to speak it back), and their two dogs (who steadfastly refuse to answer any French commands). The cat pretends they’re all beneath her, no matter what language they’re speaking.

Visit Ariel:

Website:   http://www.arieltachna.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ArielTachna
Twitter:    @ArielTachna
 E-mail: arieltachna@gmail.comwszaa

3 day release blitz: *Snapshots by Addison Albright (excerpt and giveaway)

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Title: Snapshots
Author: Addison Albright
Release Date: February 25th 2017
Genre: MM Contemporary Romance

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BLURB

Whatever your romance reading preference — gay virgin, opposites attract, friends to lovers, or simply fun how-they-met stories — this collection contains a variety of sweet, contemporary, short gay romances, sure to make you smile.

Rewritten and re-edited, these stories were previously published singly and are available now in one collection!

Contains the stories:

* Cow Pie Bingo

* King Kong vs. The Skinny Pirate

* Born to Be Wild

* The Straggler

* Now and Forever

* Moving On

* Moving Along

* Dropping Quarters

* Nevermore

* Photo Shoot

* Okay, Then

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Preface:

I love short stories. Sometimes a brief “snapshot” taken from a couple’s larger story is all that’s wanted. The narrative of “how they met” is the focus of six of the shorts in this set—quirky tales ranging from meeting at a charity fundraiser, to college kids pranking each other, to a mishap at a XXX adult video arcade.

Also included is a story featuring a well-established couple’s wedding dilemma, a friends-to-lovers tale, a coming-out-of-the-closet drama, and a continuation short that follows one of those how-we-mets. Rounding out this collection is an account revisiting the main characters from my full-length novel, ’Til Death Do Us Part.

All of these stories are contemporary, although one has a bit of paranormal flavor to it. Heat ratings range from “fairly sweet” to “rather steamy.” Excepting the final story, all were originally written in 2008 and early 2009. One (“Photo Shoot”) started out as a prompt word ficlet that I later fleshed out to a more complete story. Each has received a thorough overhaul, some more extensive than others. I hope you’ll enjoy reading them as much as I did writing them.

Find Snapshots on Goodreads

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | iBooks | JMS Books

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**Please note King Kong vs. The Skinny Pirate is FREE as a separate ebook

Goodreads | Amazon US | Amazon UK | iBooks | JMS Books

EXCERPT

“Okay, then.” That’s what Sam had said. His leg had bounced like it always did when he was nervous. It was endearing, and one of the things that drew me to him. His grin was another. I melted a little each time he leveled it in my direction, which had made it incredibly hard to hide my attraction. That ship had now sailed. For better or for worse, Sam now knew of my interest, and had agreed to a date.

His words had come at the end of a conversation we’d had at breakfast yesterday morning after we’d cleared up a misunderstanding regarding my intentions when I’d previously asked him out. Well, I suppose technically I’d asked him back to my room for a drink, so I couldn’t actually fault him for not understanding that I truly wanted to date him, not just have a fling while we were here in Honiara collecting research data.

“I’m sorry, Henry,” Sam said now as we approached Mambo Juice’s entry. “I wasn’t thinking straight, obviously.”

Perspiration dripped down my face. My pits felt more than a little damp, and sweat matted my chest hairs. The shower I’d taken right before we’d left the Solomon Kitano Mendana Hotel, where we were staying a few days before heading to the smaller islands in the chain, had been a complete waste of time. But even if I’d known Sam would suggest we walk a mile to the Mambo Juice, I probably would have bathed anyway. I wanted to impress the man, after all.

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Giveaway : WIN a Snapshots ebook

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About the Author

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Addison Albright lives in the middle of the USA with three peculiar cats. Her stories are gay (sometimes erotic) romance, and tend to be sweet man-love in contemporary settings. Her education includes a BS in Education with a major in Mathematics and a minor in Chemistry. Addison loves spending time with her family, reading, popcorn, boating, french fries, “open window weather,” cats, math, and anything chocolate. She loves to read pretty much anything and everything, anytime and anywhere.

Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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A MelanieM Review: Man and Tree by Wayne Mansfield

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Rating: 2.75 stars out of 5

 

man-and-tree-by-wayne-mansfieldNathaniel, a horse-riding traveler in eighteenth century Europe, emerges from a vast forest to see a field of golden wheat. At the centre of the field is a large tree and, at its base, a man. Strangely, the man appears to be talking to the tree.

At the village inn, Nathaniel asks the barman about the man and tree. The barman refuses to tell him anything, so Nathaniel decides to visit the man himself. The following morning he rides back to the field, where he notices the man is still there, talking to the tree.

He introduces himself to the man, whose name is Adam. When questioned about why he sits beside the tree, talking to it, Adam reveals a story so amazing, it borders on being unbelievable. Nathaniel, too, has a similar tale, the conclusion of which is just as bizarre and shocking as Adam’s.

Man and Tree is a short, and quite frankly bizarre little tale about two couples who had the misfortune to run a foul of a witch.  I think had the author tried for more of a fantasy feel, instead of locating the story in 18th century Europe and going for an adult fairy tale, Man and Tale might have come off a little better on the whole.  As it is, its hard to explain the complete lack any awareness of the laws and societal awareness of homosexuality of those times.  Its completely ignored or made little reference to.  Surprising when both couples meet and jump enthusiastically into sex and relationships.  Then things go spectacularly wrong for all four of them.

I like the imagery the author provides when that happens.  Nice, very  nice indeed.  But Mansfield leaves other holes in his narrative.  Some things makes sense, others, not so much, especially when it comes to said witch.  Tell us more about that witch and her background. And that ending?  Wrapped up way too easily and without the requisite answers to some of the  questions the author himself raised about the village and the villagers.

All in all?  Man and Tree had some nice elements to it but more aspects to it that raised questions in my mind.  It sort of felt like an outline to a larger story than a completed short tale.

Cover art is ok but doesn’t really speak to any of the elements in the story.

Sales Links

JMS Books LLC

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Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 47 pages
Published September 10th 2016 by JMS Books LLC
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Edition LanguageEnglish