RELEASE BLITZ: “Faking a Groom” by DJ Jamison. $10.00 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway Included.

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Faking A Groom

Author and Publisher: DJ Jamison

Cover Artist: Garrett Leigh at Black Jazz Design

Release Date: September 24, 2020

Genre Contemporary M/M Romance

Trope/s: Fake relationship, second chance, lingerie/femme clothes exploration

Heat Rating: 5 flames

Length: 103 000 words

It is the third book in the Marital Bliss series but can read as a standalone

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available on Kindle Unlimited

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Can two men fake an engagement for the greater good?

 

Blurb
Avery Kinkaid has been bowing to his father’s will far too long. But when his dad supports anti-LGBT legislation, he’s had enough. Sen. Kinkaid says things would be different if Avery had a fiancé in the wings. Well, fine: He’ll just have to get one.

Rory Fisher is an activist with a heart of gold and nerves of steel. He’s not afraid to call Avery on his bullshit, and that’s why Avery knows Rory is the perfect fake fiancé to help him take a stand. If he still feels a little too much for his ex, well, he can shove that down and suck it up to beat his dad at his own game.

Until Rory encourages his most hidden desires. Until he makes Avery feel stronger, braver, and freer than he’s ever been.

Loving Rory is easy, but Avery’s father won’t just sit back and let them have their happily ever after. They will have to fight: for their love, for justice, for a future together.

This is one power struggle they can’t afford to lose.

 

Excerpt

Avery knew that Gil wanted him to tell his father he was coming out, in no uncertain terms. He didn’t understand the manipulative powers Drake Kinkaid possessed. Or maybe he did, now that he worked for him. Avery had never been able to out-argue his father. Each time he tried, he found himself carefully repositioned, as if a piece on a chess board, until he was agreeing to his father’s terms.

“I don’t know what do,” Avery said. “I’ve tried to be patient, but he always talks me out of coming out. I think I’ve got my mind made up, and he somehow convinces me to keep waiting. I hate that I’m so damn weak.”

“Don’t be so hard on yourself. Your dad is a politician. He persuades people for a living.”

“He’s always got a loophole,” Avery grumbled. “Like today. He said, it’d be different if—”

He stopped short, eyes locked on a man who walked past their table toward the bathrooms. Something about the shape of him and the way he moved—long legs, slim hips, smooth stride—reminded him of Rory.

He couldn’t see his face, but his hair was the right color. It was gathered in a knot at his neck instead of loose, so it was tough to gauge exact length, but damn, that ass. Was it possible to recognize a guy by his ass?

“Avery?”

He blinked and looked back toward Gil. “Hmm?”

“You were saying that your father said it’d be different if…?”

“Oh.” He cleared his throat, trying to shake the vision of Rory and the niggling feeling that he should go talk to him. It felt significant that he was here tonight, if he was here. Avery wouldn’t put it past himself to imagine things. Rory had been on his mind a lot since the gala.

“My father said it’d be different if I was engaged. That he’d support me then.” His gaze drifted back to the bathrooms, watching as Rory emerged. He was sure it was him now. He’d recognize those sharp features anywhere. Heart thumping, he asked Gil, “Do you think he means that?”

“Maybe,” Gil said, though he sounded dubious. “I don’t know.”

Avery rapped the table with his knuckles. “Right. He could be bluffing. There’s only one way to find out.”

“And that is…”

Avery took a big swallow of his beer. Then grinned at Gil. “Guess I have to get engaged.”

“Wait, what?”

Avery nodded. “You keep telling me to do something. Well, you’re right. I have to call my father’s bluff.”

“Oh, Avery, I don’t know…”

“I’ve got the perfect person in mind to help me.”

“Uh…who is that?”

“Rory Fisher.”

Rory, the guy who left you because you wouldn’t leave the closet? How is he the right—”

“Because he’s here,” Avery said, feeling euphoric as intoxication, years of regret and longing, and a desire to break free all coalesced into the best idea ever. “It’s fate, man. It’s like the universe is telling me to make my father put his money where his mouth is. He’s always got a reason, an excuse, a loophole. Well this time, I’ve got the loophole, and I’m going to take it.”

“By getting engaged,” Gil said disbelievingly. “To a man who dumped you.”

Avery laughed. “Crazy, right?”

“Yes,” Gil said emphatically.

“Good.” Avery shoved back his chair. “Because I’ve tried sane and respectful and calm. It’s time for a little crazy. It’s time for drastic action.”

“Yeah, but Avery…”

He held up a finger. “Hold that thought. I have to go propose to the man who got away.”

 

 

About the Author

DJ Jamison is the author of more than twenty m/m romances. She writes a variety of queer characters, from gay to bisexual to asexual. DJ grew up in the Midwest in a working-class family, and those influences can be found in her writing through characters coping with real-life problems: money troubles, workplace drama, family conflicts and, of course, falling in love. DJ spent more than a decade in the newspaper industry before chasing her first dream to write fiction. She spent a lifetime reading before that and continues to avidly devour her fellow authors’ books each night. She lives in Kansas with her husband, two sons, one snake, and a sadistic cat named Birdie.

 

Social Media Links

Blog/Website | Facebook | Facebook Group | Twitter: @dj_jamison_

Instagram | Newsletter Sign-up | KoFi for bonus content

 

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your choice of the Marital Bliss series in ebook (or audiobook if available) and a $10 US Amazon gift card

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Continue Reading RELEASE BLITZ: “Faking a Groom” by DJ Jamison. $10.00 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway Included.

COVER REVEAL: “To Poison a Prince” by Andrea Alien

COVER REVEAL

Book Title: To Poison a Prince

Author: Aldrea Alien

Cover Artist: Leonardo Borazio

Release Date: July 31, 2021

Genre: Fantasy M/M Romance

Trope/s: Hidden Villain, Hurt/Comfort, Man in Peril, Opposites Attract

Themes: Love, Cultural Differences, Revenge

Heat Rating: 4 flames

Someone is out to murder his husband and he might just be the reason they succeed.

 

Blurb

Imperial Crown Prince Darshan knew his journey home wasn’t going to be the modest one he hoped for, especially not after eloping with Hamish, a former prince—and now exile—of Tirglas.

When he thwarts a clumsy attempt on his husband’s life during a soirée hosted by his long-standing rival and half-sister, he figures the worst is behind them.

Yet, the threat of death continues to shadow them across the empire. Someone is intent on making the rumours of his husband’s demise a reality, someone who can erase the memory of their very presence from people’s minds.

Darshan must discover who is behind the attempts before they succeed. But who can he trust when the culprit is capable of slipping by the most vigilant of guards?

 

About the Author

Aldrea Alien is an award-winning, bisexual author of fantasy romance with varying heat levels. Born and raised in New Zealand, she lives on a small farm with her family, including a menagerie of animals, who are all convinced they’re just as human as the next person. Especially the cats. Since discovering a love of writing at the age of twelve, she hasn’t found an ounce of peace from the characters plaguing her mind with all of them clamouring for her to tell their story first.

 

Social Media Links

Blog/Website | Facebook | Facebook Group | Twitter

Newsletter Sign-Up | Instagram | BookBub

 

 

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Continue Reading COVER REVEAL: “To Poison a Prince” by Andrea Alien

RELEASE BLITZ: “Young Table Knights” by Siryn Sueng

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Young King Arthur and the Round Table Knights

Author: Siryn Sueng

Publisher: Deep Hearts YA

Cover Artist: Ave

Release Date: September 18, 2020

Genre/s: Fantasy, M/M YA Romance

Trope/s: First Love, Arthurian Legend

Themes: Coming of Age, Knights

Heat Rating: 2 flames

Length: 68,322 words/ 270 pages

This is book 1 of a planned series.

Goodreads

Buy Links

Amazon US | Amazon UK

Smashwords | Apple Books | B&N | Kobo

Arthur grew up a peasant, but when he was fourteen, Excalibur chose him, and now as King Arthur, he must learn to play the game of royalty quickly … or suffer the consequences.

Blurb

There was no reason for Arthur to think he would ever become king.

A peasant and son of a baker, Arthur grew up in the castle town of Camelot. When he attended the choosing ceremony, it was merely to see who would draw the Holy Sword, Excalibur – to see who would inherit the throne of the recently departed King Uther. He never expected the sword would choose him…

But it did.

Now, at the young age of fourteen, he has become King Arthur, and for all the power he has gained, he has made just as many enemies. Surrounded by the Knights of the Round Table, and led by the mysterious mage, Merlin, Arthur is grateful for his allies, though he would just as soon return to his old life. Surely, someone more worthy should be chosen as king.

Arthur is in the middle of chaos, a world where everyone wants more than they let on, where many hate the idea of a young boy with no noble background being crowned king; where cold stares and whispered words are just as sharp as an assassin’s blade.

As Arthur fends for his life, he must draw on the strength of his knights, especially fifteen-year-old Mordred, who becomes closer to him than the mere bounds of duty. He must become king, not just in name, but in his heart.

And he must do it quickly, because his enemies want more than just his crown…

Excerpt

I tried not to look too out of place or inconspicuous. Even so, the people who came by us sent me strange looks, and when they noted the Holy Sword in my grip, there were many reactions. Shock was the most prominent. It made my face hot with embarrassment and my heart clench tightly.

“Here we are, Your Majesty.”

I stumbled as Merlin addressed me. Your Majesty…I will never get used to that, I thought sourly.

I looked up from where I’d glued my eyes to the floor. The door that stood before us was ornate and decorated with the same dragon that adorned the castle gates. Merlin opened it.

My mouth fell open at what I saw. “I’m staying in this room?” I could barely get my voice to come out as I took in the elaborate bedroom before me. A large fireplace took up most of the right wall. A giant bed took up the left side. There was a wash basin that looked as if it were made of pure gold, two dressers, a desk, and a giant wardrobe. Beyond the bed, the room stretched farther and there in the secluded area was a giant tub with dragon heads as the feet. Directly across from me, the stonework opened to an elegant archway leading to a balcony.

The room was decorated with reds and golds, and purple too. The bed had all three colors, but in a very tasteful design. The pillows took up almost half of it and I knew I wasn’t ever going to sleep well in that massive monstrosity.

“Yes. Believe me, you get used to this far quicker than anything else,” Merlin said. “This room is yours, your sanctuary, as it were. Do whatever you like to it. Now, why don’t you wash up, rest. I’ll send the boy as soon as I find one. Should you have need of anything, there will be guards in the hall. Don’t hesitate to ask, Your Majesty.”

I shook my head and turned to face him. I let anger boil forth to cover my insecurities. “No more ‘your majesty’!”

Merlin tilted his head at me, confused at first. Then he gave me the same mischievous look I’d seen at the plaza. “Oh? And what should I call you, then?”

“Arthur. Just, Arthur.”

“Well, you’re not ‘just Arthur’ now. You’re King Arthur and you will be addressed as such. So, if you dislike ‘your majesty’ then my only advice is to get used to it.”

I glared at him. “You’re awful.”

Merlin’s smile didn’t cease. If anything, it grew larger. He gave me a sweeping bow that I was certain was more to mock me than out of actual respect. Then he backed away and closed the door.

I was left alone in the room and the silence was heavy again. I turned from the door and cringed at the gaudy riches sprawled before me.

I squeezed my hands into fists. It was then that I realized I still held the Holy Sword. It weighed heavily in my grip, my shoulder aching as I lifted the blade. It was almost too much for me to hold upright. How could I have forgotten such a weight?

The beautiful silver weapon reflected the sunlight. Orange rays spread into the room from the giant balcony across from me.

This can’t be happening. I chewed on my bottom lip as I examined the weapon. This was a dream, it had to be. There was no other believable explanation. I put the sword on the desk, laying it down gently. I backed away from it and eventually turned to the bed.

I tested the mattress and found it to be just soft enough to beckon to me. Slowly, I crawled up on it and lay flat on my stomach. The cool red doublet felt amazing and I found myself slipping into sleep. It wasn’t long before weariness took me.

And when I wake up, I’ll be at home with Mother…

About the Author

Siryn Sueng is a writer of fantasy, paranormal, and even Sci-Fi genres. She’s married to a wonderful husband with a minion of two years. They have a full house with three adorable fur babies, Anubis -the mighty cat hunter- Kida -the momma bear- and Mishka -the loveable husky-.

Siryn is a lover of games on a wide range of platforms. She plays on the PC, console, and hand-held devices including the phone. Japan is where she would love to visit sometime and is a huge inspiration to many of her projects. She’s a huge fan of Japan, including manga and anime. Siryn has even begun to dabble in comic/manga script writing. Future works in this will be posted on WebToon.

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RELEASE BLITZ: “Vendetta Del Cuore” by Leigh Kenzie

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Vendetta del Cuore (Vendetta Book 2)

Author: Leigh Kenzie

Publisher: Self-Published

Cover Artist: Temptation Creations

Release Date: September 17, 2020

Genre: Dark M/M Mafia

Trope/s: Age gap, Stockholm Syndrome, Mafia, Dominance/submission

Themes: Vengeance, Mafia, Betrayal, Possession, Dominance

Heat Rating: 5 flames

Length: 57 000 words/218 pages

It is book 2 in the Vendetta series.

This must be read after Il Padrone, Book 1 of the Vendetta Series.

It cannot be read as a standalone.

Goodreads

Buy links – Available on Kindle Unlimited

Universal Link | Amazon US | Amazon UK

Loyalties will be tested

Blurb

Allesandro
Loyalty.

My life revolves around it. Loyalty to me and to the Family. I demand it and in return, I will protect them. Emilio thinks he has me fooled but he doesn’t. No matter what I have to do, he will be my most loyal boy yet.

Emilio
Loyalty.

He offers me vengeance but insists I kneel and pledge my loyalty. Do I give in and if I do will I look in the mirror and see a monster staring back at me?

What happens when vengeance and the heart are tied together?

Trigger Warnings: Contains graphic violence

Book 2 of the Vendetta Series ends in a cliffhanger.

This must be read after Il Padrone, Book 1 of the Vendetta Series. It cannot be read as a standalone.

Book 3 coming October 2020!

Excerpt

Emilio’s POV

I turn on the water and grab my soap and shampoo while it heats up. By the time it’s ready, the room is filled with steam. I quickly wash my hair and body as I count the minutes down. I know Ignacio enters the shower at a certain time, and I want to play. Master may be able to stop me from having too much fun, but so far, he hasn’t stopped me from torturing the other boys.

I pour some more soap in my hands and then slowly stroke my cock while I play with my balls. It doesn’t take long for my cock to become hard as I use the right pressure and twist at the top. The suds dripping down tickle my balls, making me shudder. I remove my left hand and brace it on the wall when Ignacio steps inside. All of the training has really defined my muscles, and I can feel his stare on me. It’s a heavy weight I embrace.

I tighten my grip and start to move my hips, fucking my hand. I do it slowly at first, making sure to flex my ass muscles with every thrust. I moan when I occasionally swipe my thumb over my slit that’s leaking precum. Even with the noise of the water, I start hearing his own groans. I spur him on by pushing into my hand even harder. It makes me groan, and my head falls forward to rest on the wall. Despite the soreness and exhaustion from the training, I want to see how far I can push him. I fuck my fist hard and fast, imagining Ignacio coming up to me and sliding into my ass. I start a constant stream of “fuck, fuck, fuck,” and start shaking. I know it’s not going to take much for me to come, but I try to make it last. Finally, the pressure building gets to be too much, and my balls become too tight. Right before I come, I throw my head back.

“Ignacio!” I shout. I hear an answering groan from him and I turn my head to look at him, reveling in the dark, lust-filled gaze roaming across my whole body. I’m breathing heavily and in no shape for any other activities, but I take my time looking at him. The veins in his neck are standing out, disfiguring some of the tattoos stretching along there. His body is covered in ink, swirls of dark with the rare pop of color. I’ve never seen anyone so covered, but it makes me want to trace every one with my tongue. I look at his thick uncut cock, red and pulsing with need. I want to feel it inside me. I want to know if that curve would hit my spot just right.

I rinse off quickly and stalk toward him. I come so close to him it would only take one tiny movement and we’d be touching. I’m careful, though, knowing I can’t push Master too far. I let my lips rest right by his ear.

“Are you going to throw me down again tomorrow? Think about all the fun we could have?” I whisper, hearing the hitch in his breathing. I lean a little further away and take a deliberate, slow look at him. “You may want to take care of that.”

About the Author

Leigh is a dark M/M romance author from Texas with two needy terrors of terriers and a chaotic family. She considers coffee a major food group and her family fears broken coffeemakers. She writes in her spare time, forced to the keyboard by characters entirely too vocal in her opinion and often falls victim to plot monkeys. In between creating mayhem with her characters and friends, her hope is to transport readers to fictional places and provide darkness with a twist.

Author Links

Amazon page | Facebook Group | Facebook Page

Newsletter Sign-Up | BookBub | Goodreads

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RELEASE BLITZ: “Forgiven” by Colette Davison

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Forgiven (Heaven and Hell Club Book 3)

Author and Publisher: Colette Davison

Cover Artist: Colette Davison

Release Date: September 17, 2020

Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance

Trope/s: Hurt/comfort, slow burn, first time bi-sexual,

found family, tattoos, and piercings.

Themes: Self forgiveness, sins of the father, fresh starts

Heat Rating: 3 flames

Length: 60 669 words

It’s the third book in the series but can be read as a standalone

Goodreads

Buy Links – Available on Kindle Unlimited

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Can love and acceptance help Callum forgive himself?

Blurb

Callum’s past haunts him and he’s desperate for a fresh start. When his uncle takes him in and the manager of the Heaven and Hell Club gives him a chance, things might be looking up.

Then he meets Dylan—a cocky, make-up wearing twink who challenges all his assumptions about himself.

Getting to know each other changes everything, as they give each other the love and acceptance they’ve both craved throughout their lives. But will it be enough to ease their doubts, heal their wounds, and allow them to have their own happy ever after?

Forgiven is the third book in the Heaven and Hell Club series. It’s a hurt/comfort romance, with a slow burn relationship, a bi-sexual awakening, tattoos, and piercings in interesting places. It can be read as a standalone, but works better as part of the series.

Content warning: homophobic parents

Excerpt

Callum didn’t move until he heard the door shut, then he started the level again. It was easier now that he was alone. His inhibitions dropped away from him and he focused on slicing his beams of light through the coloured blocks. He’d selected easy mode, which was fun but not a challenge. He managed to hit every block the second time through the song, so upped the difficulty level.

He had to move his body a little more on standard mode. The blocks came faster, the patterns were slightly harder. As they were more in time to the music, it actually made the level easier. He had to stretch to hit blocks when they were right at the sides or up high.

He upped the difficulty again and found himself moving even more—only to reach the blocks, he wasn’t actually dancing or anything. The pace of the blocks was almost frantic, and he quickly bombed out of the level. He tried again and again, quickly losing track of time as he became determined to get to the end of the level. Once he’d finished it, he set himself a goal to hit all the blocks in the right direction.

He wasn’t sure how many times he played it through. Being within the virtual world meant he was completely absorbed in what he was doing. He’d worked up a sweat, his heart beat faster and adrenaline made him buzz. He’d learnt the words to the song and was singing along to it. He was moving more now, his body reacting to the music as well as the blocks that flew at him. It was fun.

It was only when his stomach rumbled that he wondered how long he’d been playing. When he got to the end of the level, he stopped and carefully took off the headset. Dylan was sitting on the sofa. Callum glanced around, but there were no pizza boxes in sight. He hadn’t smelt any food either, but he’d needed to be sure.

“You never left, did you?”

Dylan shrugged. “You look like you’ve been having fun.”

Callum scowled. “You tricked me.”

“Maybe, but it gave you the freedom to let loose, didn’t it?”

Callum stared at the headset in his hands.

“I told you the game would get you moving.”

“I still can’t dance.”

“You should have seen yourself, darling. You’ve got a good sense of rhythm and some moves.”

About the Author

Colette’s personal love story began at university, where she met her future husband. An evening of flirting, in the shadow of Lancaster castle, eventually led to a fairytale wedding. She’s enjoying her own ‘happy ever after’ in the north of England with her husband, two beautiful children and her writing.

Social Media Links

Blog/Website | Facebook Page | Facebook Group: Colette’s Cosy Corner

BookBub | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram: @colettedavison

Mailing List | Newsletter Sign-Up

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RELEASE BLITZ: “Atonement Camp for Unrepentant Homophobes” by Evan Corbin

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Atonement Camp for Unrepentant Homophobes

Author: Evan J. Corbin

Publisher: Atonement Book, LLC

Cover Artist: The Book Cover Whisperer

Release Date: September 3, 2020 for the print book and September 17, 2020 for the eBook.

Genre/s: Contemporary LGBTQ Fiction; Speculative Fiction; Humour

Trope/s: Fish-out of water comedy

Themes: Coming out, cultural assimilation

Heat Rating: 2 flames

Length: 70 600 words/ 283 pages

Goodreads

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited and Paperback

Amazon US | Amazon UK

Atonement Camp.

Pastor Harris is only going to save his career.

But while he doesn’t want to be there, a change of heart may be just what he needs…

Blurb

The oldest translation of a Gospel is returned to the world by a secret society long dedicated to its preservation. In it, Jesus explicitly condemns bigotry and homophobia. In a new world in which LGBTQ passengers receive preferential boarding for flights and the United States has elected its first lesbian President, Pastor Rick Harris is stalwart, closeted preacher who doggedly holds onto his increasingly unpopular convictions.

When an incendiary sermon goes too far and offends an influential family, Rick makes a painful choice to keep his job: He attends an atonement camp run by drag queens for society’s most unrepentant and terminally incurable homophobes.

Atonement Camp is immersion therapy for Pastor Harris, and it might be working. An open bar with pedicures, a devastatingly attractive roommate and an endless supply of glitter help him manage to make new friends. Soon, Rick and his cohorts learn the camp may hold its own secrets. Amid the smiling faces and scantily clad pool boys who staff the camp, a clandestine group plots to discredit the New Revelation and everything it stands for.

If Rick has the conviction to confront his own hypocrisy, he might be able to uncover the conspirators with help from his adopted flock—and find new truths within himself.

Excerpt

Chapter 1

Northern Syria

It was just after sunrise. The call to prayer from the nearby city’s rooftop loudspeakers receded as Dr. Michael Donahue’s driver left a familiar road for the makeshift trails that led deep into the desert. One faith bridged to the next, he thought. Before long, he wouldn’t need the light jacket, but he wore it anyway. It was a mysterious quest, and he tugged the jacket tight around his chest.

The jeep bounced over the rough terrain as Dr. Donahue carefully poured hot water from his thermos over his yerba mate leaves. His second mate would be less bitter than the first. Each time he made a fresh tea, the leaves lost more of their bitterness to the boiling water. The same leaves could be used again and again any given morning. It reminded him of his profession. Archeology was the sober study of the forgotten—people who lived, laughed, suffered, and died, their history diluted by each passing year. Dr. Donahue was determined to learn as much as he needed to reanimate their past with subtle detail, adding context to what would otherwise be merely more than a list of dates and details for his undergraduates to memorize before a test.

As promised, a man stood by the still-empty dig site. He was dressed in a Western style—no keffiyeh or other head dressing. With short sleeves and rugged boots, his attire was more practical than fashionable. Dr. Donahue always appreciated utility and function above much else. He acknowledged that his estimation of the man’s credibility was thus-far unearned, but he nonetheless felt more comfortable in the company of the familiar.

The site had been Dr. Donahue’s home for most of the past year. His team would return after Ramadan. Dr. Donahue’s research specialization centered almost primarily around the early Christian era. He took a certain guilty pleasure in casually admitting his atheism each semester to the newest crop of freshman at his university in Washington, D.C. Like all things, he saw it as a learning opportunity. One is not excused from understanding something just because they don’t agree with it, he’d remind them. The site itself was an early Christian refuge under the Roman Empire. Forgotten by time, but now rediscovered. Painstakingly, he and his team would uncover artifacts and consider what stories they told about the people who made them. Dust from the jeep’s tires made a gritty fog that enveloped the air. Dr. Donahue squinted, his eyes already dry. He coughed and plodded through the sand to the man silently awaiting his arrival.

“Dr. Donahue.” The professor extended his hand to the stranger.

The man took his hand and smiled. “Thank you for coming. Your research associate mentioned your name last year when he worked with us, and we immediately knew we needed to meet with you.”

Dr. Donahue fanned the remaining traces of the sand from his face. “We?”

The man flashed a half smile. “Consider us like yourself, Professor. Archeologists.”

“I would assume, but that doesn’t answer my question.”

The man chuckled. “By the end of the day, I expect that to change. Come. Follow me,” he beckoned.

Still confused, the professor followed the man down the makeshift stairs to the dig site.

“We’re not certain where it was found,” the man said, waving his arm over the site, “but this is likely close and as good a spot as any.”

“What, exactly, was found?”

The man frowned. “Technically, it was never lost. Let me be more precise. This is where it will be rediscovered.”

The professor felt his frustration growing. “What, and by whom?”

The man turned to face the professor, still smiling. “The oldest copy of the Gospel of Mark ever discovered. I’m what we refer to as a Custodiana group of people committed to protecting this draft as we have done for more generations than our history may account for.”

The professor’s jaw dropped. He looked for answers in the man’s eyes to questions he could not manage to formulate.

“Every truth has its season, professor,” the man said, lowering himself to sit next on an empty crate near an assortment of digging tools. “This region has been plagued with war. We fear that if the artifact is not returned to the world now, it may never be.”

If his research associate hadn’t already vouched so strongly for the meeting, the professor was certain he would have already left the madman in another cloud of obscuring sand. Instead he asked: “Why have you kept it in the first place?”

“It contains a passage not found in any modern text. What’s the American expression? ‘One man’s waste is another man’s treasure’? That’s how our forefathers saw it. They saw something worthy of protection until the world was ready for the message. That time is now.”

Dr. Donahue smiled. His birthday was the following week, and the realization that his research associate might have set this up as an elaborate practical joke began to seem like the most likely explanation. It wouldn’t be out of character for him, he thought.

“So, where is it?” he asked, playing along.

The man pointed to a black chest. Taking the bait, Dr. Donahue carefully lifted the lid, expecting some puppet to pop out and exclaim “Happy Birthday!” Instead, the heavy lid creaked open to reveal a scroll bound in plastic and wound over on itself. His smile faded. Even without the aid of his radiocarbon dating equipment, he could tell the document was old. Very, very old.

About the Author

Evan is a member of the LGBTQ community who fancies himself as a playboy socialite, living in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Between work and lucid moments of sobriety, he writes a little. His debut novel is a light-hearted work that still manages to confront religious hypocrisy and contemporary LGBTQ struggles to balance their loss of culture with new-found civil rights. His friends say the book is great! Hopefully, you will as well.

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Continue Reading RELEASE BLITZ: “Atonement Camp for Unrepentant Homophobes” by Evan Corbin