As one of the #CMCon17 featured bloggers, I get to have a little fun with a few of the fabulous authors who will be hitting the beach for Coastal Magic 2017 by showcasing their many stories. We had so much fun with last year’s At the Beach feature, that we’re doing it again.
Today KC Burn is taking us to the beach with Ty and Max from her recently released novel, Illusion of Life; so if Beach Life gets your interest, make sure you check out her latest book, Three Dates of Christmas.
Ty smirked. His fiancé, Max, might sound irate, but his eyes told a different story. Max’s gorgeous blue eyes were dilated with lust, hot enough to melt Ty. It pleased Ty more than words could say that their ardor hadn’t diminished after their nearly 8 month engagement.
“What? This isn’t even the most revealing swimsuit they had.” Ty twirled adding a seductive little shimmy to his hips. He’d purposefully kept his new suit a secret and Max’s reaction didn’t disappoint.
Ty shook out his towel and spread it on the beach beside the umbrella they’d plunged into the sand.
By the time he’d unpacked the beach bag and was ready to lie down and spend the day relaxing in the summer sun, Max still hadn’t moved, and a quick glance confirmed Max’s gaze roving restlessly over Ty’s nearly nude form. Max wasn’t exactly shy in the bedroom, and he’d touched and tasted every square millimeter of Ty’s skin at one point or another, but there was something liberating and exotic to be baring most of himself on a public beach in front of the man he loved. He could only assume Max was experiencing something similar.
It didn’t hurt that this was the first time Ty was able to show off the tattoos Max had designed and inked for him as part of his apprenticeship. It was better than most tattoos he’d seen and every swoop and whorl spoke of Max’s love for him in a pattern that would endure for a lifetime. Max had designed interconnected pieces that weren’t full back, chest or sleeves, but spread across all three, and brought to mind the many stained glass windows Ty had seen when travelling through Europe to research his PhD thesis, minus any religious overtones. The tattoos meant Ty could no longer wear short-sleeved shirts to work any more but it was a sacrifice he gladly made. Not only did he have the reputation of a slightly eccentric, mostly boring history professor to maintain but he had tenure review coming up soon and didn’t want to negatively influence the outcome.
The tiny red boy-short swimsuit displayed the tats to their best advantage, and Max obviously thought so, judging by the obviously altered fix of his own more modest mid-thigh trunks. Ty found himself inspecting Max as closely as Max had inspected him. His fiancé was so sexy, and Max’s own new tattoos made him more alluring. But without a spare inch of fabric in Ty’s tiny suit, he couldn’t afford to contemplate Max and what they’d do when they got home.
Max cleared his throat. Twice. “Are you sure it’s legal to wear that in public?”
Ty laughed as he settled on the beach towel, just the right antidote for too much blood heading south. “It’s early still, but as the day goes on, you’ll see that this is positively modest.”
A quirked brow shouted Max’s skepticism louder than words.
“Not kidding. There’s a reason I brought you to Hanlan’s Point rather than Sunnyside Beach. If you were feeling particularly brave, we could head over to the clothing optional part of the beach.”
A bright red flush lit up Max’s skin chest to hairline. “You don’t mean naked, do you? Like completely?”
He couldn’t help but laugh again. Max had come a long way since they’d first met, but even tattooing some very intimate places on strangers hadn’t quite burned off his ingrained reticence.
Max frowned. “I don’t… I mean… I don’t know that I’d like anyone else looking at you. It was very hard, watching you with other men. Before we were together.” He settled on the beach towel with an adorably disgruntled air. A six foot blond man covered in tats and built like a construction worker wasn’t often cute, but that was the first word that came to Ty’s mind.
Ty reached over and grabbed Max’s hand. It had taken months, but Max no longer flinched or stared around in a panic when Ty touched him with affection in public. “Don’t worry. I wouldn’t want to tempt anyone by letting them see you.”
They sat in silence, just enjoying the breeze coming off the water, giving them a small reprieve from the summer’s unrelenting humidity. They’d applied sunscreen before they’d left the apartment, but they’d have to reapply soon to protect the colors in their tattoos, even though they weren’t directly in the sun.
Absentmindedly, Ty traced one of the black lines on his arm. Max had done all the work by referencing images on the internet and in books and it pained Ty more than he could say that Max would never be able to see those windows in person.
As crazy as it sounded, Max was a man who’d made an incredible transition. A year ago, he’d been trapped in a painting that hung on the wall of Ty’s bedroom, trapped by a curse since 1937. It had taken an almost impossible set of circumstances to set him free, but it had happened, and they’d fallen in love. Max had learned about the modern world by viewing television shows over the years, but even now there were still gaps in his knowledge, and he had retained a rare sense of modesty and prudence. Any oddities were explained by their story that Max had been born and raised in a low-tech commune. But the fake ID they’d procured so Max could work and function might not withstand the scrutiny of a passport application, so travelling out of the country was never going to be a possibility for them.
“I wish I could take you to the Caribbean, or the Greek Isles.”
Ty didn’t have to say any more for Max to know exactly where his melancholy thoughts had gone. It certainly wasn’t the first time Ty had bemoaned the fact that Max would never be able to leave Canada. Not that Max had ever gave any indication he wasn’t happy with their life together in downtown Toronto, especially since they were getting married in the fall, but Ty worried.
This time, Max was the one to squeeze his hand. “Please don’t worry. I love you.” Max ran a palm over the stylized script that spelled out Tyler’s name on his chest, matching Max’s name on Tyler’s chest. “I’m sure there are plenty of places we can go for our honeymoon without leaving the country. Don’t forget, I’ve never had the opportunity to even leave the greater Toronto area.”
It was impossible to deny the sincerity in Max’s voice, and combined with a very rare display of affection initiated by his fiancé, Ty finally relaxed. Max leaned back and closed his eyes while Ty rummaged in their beach bag for his ereader.
While Ty read, Max’s breath evened out into sleep.
Ty looked up to see a couple of guys about ten years his junior looming over him, blocking the sun almost as completely as a solar eclipse. Given that he’d never seen so much skin on either of them – their suits were even skimpier than his own – it wasn’t a surprise that it took him a couple of seconds to figure out who they were.
“Duane? Trevor? Oh. Hello.” The last people he’d expected to see were a couple of his students.
“Looking good, Dr. Williams. Love the tats. Who’d have ever guessed you were hiding all that under your shirts during those boring lectures.” Duane’s salacious gaze made Ty squirm but not in a good way like when Max had done almost the exact same thing.
“Uh, thank you.” He resisted the urge to flip a corner of the beach towel over his groin, too embarrassed to even address the fact that these two had found his lectures dull.
“We’re heading over to nude beach.” Trevor also gave him a very frank once over. “Why don’t you come with us? We could have some fun.”
Max sat up slowly, blond hair glinting like gold in the sunlight, and a complete and utter contrast to his fearsome black scowl.
“Even if it were acceptable for your professor to hang out in the nude with his students, it’s incredibly rude to proposition him in front of his fiancé. And I don’t appreciate it one bit.” The growl in Max’s voice matched the scowl perfectly. Ty had never been one for alpha male displays but there was something about this one, by this man, that set his heart aflutter.
Judging by how fast his two students morphed from predators on the prowl to awkward gangly young men, they found Max every bit as fierce as he appeared.
“Uh, right. Sorry.” Trevor grabbed Duane’s arm and led him away.
Max smiled at him, blue eyes intense but no longer irate. “You okay?”
Not hardly. Ty didn’t have a choice now, and he dragged on his T-shirt to hide his sudden arousal. “Yeah. But maybe we could cut this excursion short. Head home now.”
“Now? What about the lunch you packed?”
They’d been planning to spend most of the day at the beach, but Ty wasn’t going to be able to wait that long.
“I was thinking we could go home and you could rip this suit off me.”
Max’s eyes darkened, gaze hungry as he licked his lips. “We can eat later.”
In record time, Ty packed up their stuff. Maybe it didn’t matter where they went for their honeymoon, as long as there was a bed within close proximity.
After they stood, ready to head out, Max leaned in and gave Ty a quick kiss on the lips, wrenching a moan from him. Every time Max battled his natural shyness it made Ty hotter than ever. “We have to go now.”
“No argument from me.”
If the weather were nice, next weekend maybe they’d try this beach thing again. It had proved to be an excellent way to spend a day off.
Meet KC Burn!
I’ve been writing for what feels like my whole life. I’m a sucker for a happy ending (get your mind out of the gutters!) so it’s been romance almost all the way. After moving from Toronto to Florida for my hubby to take a dream job, I discovered a love of gay romance and fulfilled my own dream — getting published. After a few years of editing web content by day and at night, neglecting my supportive hubby and needy cat to write about men loving men, I was uprooted yet again, and now reside in California.
Writing is always fun, despite the hard work, but writing about my guys is more fun than I’ve had in a long time. Love between consenting adults is a beautiful thing, and should be celebrated, regardless of sexual orientation. I hope you enjoy reading my stories as much as I love writing them.
Want to purchase KC’s novels?
Illusion of Life
Three Dates of Christmas
Spice Solace (Galactic Alliance #1)
Wolfsbane (MIA Case Files #1)
North on Drummond
Doctor Chicken (Pen Name #1)
First Time, Forever
Come Undone: Romance Stories Inspired by the Music of Duran Duran
Don’t miss your chance to meet over 50 fabulous urban fantasy, paranormal, and romance authors at Coastal Magic next February! This super casual book-lover weekend happens on Daytona Beach, and gives everyone the chance to hang out with fellow readers and amazing storytellers.
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