Friday, March 18, 2016

Friday Countdown

Happy Friday everyone! As promised, here's a short excerpt from the second book in the Polo Series. This novel picks up about two years after Fire Horse ends. What you're seeing is a conversation between Preston's son, Sasha, and his soon-to-be-boyfriend, Jeremy. They're both struggling artists on Broadway and dealing with the reality of being on their own. Jeremy's trying to talk Sasha into seducing his producer for a chance at a big part.

SASHA threw the last item of clothing into his overnighter and slammed it shut.
“I don’t know why you’re going home for Thanksgiving when you’re still so mad at your father,” Jeremy commented. He was huddled underneath an afghan on the sofa and eyeing him critically.
“My mother would be devastated if I stayed away.”
“Are you sure you can handle it on your own?”
“Handle what?”
“Your father and the rest of the Brady Bunch.”
“What a joke,” Sasha retorted bitterly. “I was an only child for years and now I have to wait in line for crumbs.”
Jeremy got off the sofa, dragging the afghan along like a giant shawl. “I told you I’d come with you,” he said. “I could use a break from this cold.”
“I don’t need a bodyguard.”
“Jesus… you really need to lighten up,” Jeremy said coldly. “You’ve been a total bitch for weeks.”
“You’d be an asshole too if you had to subsist on ramen noodles.”
“Didn’t you say Preston had paid the rent through January?”
“Yes, but I’m saving my measly paycheck for February and March.”
“I don’t understand why he’s become so militant about money all of a sudden.Sasha shrugged. “He says I’m coasting through life and need some kind of incentive. I suppose being homeless and starving will light a bomb under my lazy ass.”
“Sasha, you’re not lazy at all, and I promise you’ll neither be homeless nor starving with me around.”
“I’m not taking a cent from you.”
“Call it a loan if you must.”
“Neither a borrower nor a lender be,” Sasha said gravely.
“Dude, you did not just quote Shakespeare.”
“I was quoting my grandfather John.”
“And he was quoting Hamlet! If your grandfather was so damn worried about that, why didn’t he provide you with a trust fund? Didn’t you say you were his only grandchild?”
“Well, no, but Paloma was just a name to him. Since she lived in another country, and never visited, he didn’t know her or care enough to include her in his will.”
“That’s kind of cold. No matter how you shake it or play it, she’s a blood relative.”
“He didn’t like foreigners very much.”
“Didn’t you tell me that your grandmother on your dad’s side was English?”
“So he must have liked imported tail at one point.”
“It didn’t work out.”
“That’s still no reason to cut out Paloma.”
“His choice,” Sasha reasoned. “Anyway, I do have a trust fund, but I can’t touch it until I’m twenty-five.”
“Shit, that’s four years from now.”
“Three and a half,” Sasha corrected. “In the meantime, I’m reduced to groveling.”
“Unless we move forward with my plan.”
“Your plan stinks.”
“When was the last time you had some protein?”
“Does spunk count?”
Jeremy made a disgusted face. “Really, Sasha?”
“Just kidding.”
“Are you even dating?”
“Your network of spies would inform you before I even unzipped my pants.”
“That’s beside the point.”
“I’m not interested in anyone.”
“No one?”
Sasha looked away.
“Moving on,” Jeremy said breezily. “Jordan is quitting due to other commitments so his alternate is moving up. They’ll need someone new to cast for that spot. Enter Alexander Nell, stage left.”
“Just like that?” Sasha said incredulously.
“After we get done with Joe, you’ll be a shoo-in for the part.”
“Don’t be so clueless, Sash. I’ll handle the prep work; you just show up when I call.”
“I don’t know, Jem.”
“There’s nothing to think about. It’ll be over before you know it.”
“What about afterward?”
“Come on, hon. Joe’s been directing a long time and knows the score. He’s not going to press for anything more than what you’re offering.”
“Which isn’t much.”
“Don’t underestimate the power of blonds.”
“Miss Clairol has at least thirty shades that can turn the mousiest brunet into a blond bombshell.”
“You, my dearest friend, are the genuine article, as rare as a unicorn and just as elusive.”
“Yeah, you.”
“Being blond hasn’t really panned out, has it? Perhaps I should try the Goth look for a change.”
“Don’t you dare,” Jeremy said, hauling Sasha into his embrace. He lifted the stubborn chin with his forefinger and gazed into the striking blue eyes that looked at him curiously. “People pay hundreds of dollars to try and look like a California dream, and all you have to do is get out of bed and run your fingers through the tangles.”
“Bandi and Paloma are more striking than I’ll ever be.”
“Oh, puleeze!”
“You can’t possibly be immune to their looks.”
“I prefer blonds.”
“That’s because you’re a brunet.”
“Why are we having this stupid conversation?”
“For lack of anything better to do,” Sasha said with a grin. “I don’t have to be at Newark for three more hours.”
“We can always have sex and brush up on our skills.”
“Don’t look so horrified.”
“I’m not,” Sasha protested. Was Jem kidding or what?
“Come here,” Jeremy said, leading Sasha over to the sofa. He grabbed a few throw pillows and stacked them in the middle. “Let’s pretend the pillows are Joe.”
“No,” Sasha said, twisting out of reach. “This is ridiculous.”
“We have to rehearse or we’ll look like a pair of amateurs when we finally get Joe in a position to be seduced.”
“You’re really serious about this three-way, aren’t you?”
“I never joke about sex.”
“Neither do I,” Sasha said, throwing the pillows on the floor and sitting down. He crossed his legs and looked at his friend. “How come you’ve never asked me about my first time?”
“I don’t like to pry.”
“Don’t give me that shit. You’ve done nothing but cross-examine me about polo and my father since we met.”
“That’s different, Sasha.”
“I wanted a little glimpse into that rarefied world. All I’ve ever known about polo is that the cologne costs anywhere from thirty to ninety bucks a bottle, depending on the size. I knew nothing about the sport until you came along.”
“We have tons of samples at home. Want some?”
“You’re only offering now?”
Sasha giggled. “I’ll bring some back.”

I'll be back again next Friday with another excerpt of Fire Horse.

Both novels are available at the Dreamspinner Press store or on Amazon. Links provided.

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