A very nice opposites-attract story.
- Review by Cindi
4 out of 5 stars
Martin Du Bois (Marti to his friends) convinces two friends to go with him to the rodeo. Asses galore!
"You never did say why we're doing this insane thing," Curt said. "And since when does the rodeo come to Washington, DC?"
"Asses, darling. Fine, round, muscular asses, packed into tight jeans," Martin said, cupping his hands lovingly.
"We get the picture. So we're going to an ass museum," Curt said.
"You can't take the art home from a museum," Martin said.
Curt stopped walking. "You are not -- not --- planning to try to seduce a straight, redneck, hillbilly cowboy, are you? Because if you'd told me this was going to be a suicide mission, I wouldn't have signed up for it."
So, with a little reluctance from the other two they take off to explore the hotness that is the rodeo circuit. Marti and his friends, Dale and Curt, are about as gay as they come and not ashamed of it. Think the stereotype with the flamboyance, eyeliner and fabulousness. That would be the "Three Cockateers, sisters in search of free-range cock!" as they call themselves.
Curt closed his eyes in anguish. "Everyone will be staring and pointing. Darling, you know I love you but you look like the Rhinestone Cowboy."
"Darling! These are Swarovski rhinestones, my perky gay ass," Martin scoffed. "Besides, black on black! This is as tasteful and elegant as a little black dress. I look fierce!"
"I guess I should be grateful you're not wearing your glittery fairy wings too," Curt grumbled but he couldn't keep a smile off his face.
"Fairy wings are only to be deployed during Gay Pride or art gallery openings."
Dressed in designer jeans and crystals, the men take off for their destination and meet up with an elderly female fan who gives them the ins and outs of the rodeo circuit even going so far as to recommend a bar where the riders hang out after events. A cowboy bar. Not exactly the type of place for three "flaming queers" to go. Testosterone overload and not in a good way. Of the three, Marti is the only one brave enough to step inside the cowboy bar and within minutes he's verbally assaulted by one of the drunk cowboys. A few hot cowboys come to Martin's rescue, including one of riders that Martin and his gang had watched earlier, Jesse Cumberland. Jesse is one of the most popular riders in the world and luckily for Martin, he's also extremely gay though he tends to keep that bit of info away from his adoring public. One rescue later, and Jesse and Martin are in Jesse's hotel room smoking up the sheets.
"Well, all right. I guess you can't all be straight. I just came by to do a little window-shopping. I didn't think I'd be taking home any merchandise."
"Odds are in your favor," Jesse said. "My name's Jesse Cumberland, ready to be wrapped up and taken home."
A one-night-stand that neither wants to end but all good things must. They exchange numbers and Martin goes back home to his cold condo wearing one of Jesse's shirts.
Martin had been burned by an old boyfriend years earlier so he knows that what he's feeling for Jesse will end up biting him later on. He tries to forget about the hot cowboy and live his life. This doesn't go so well for the normally active gay man. He sits for hours in front of the TV watching the rodeo, something he never would have done before meeting Jesse. Eventually, Curt gets tired of seeing his friend mope over what "could have been" so he pushes him to make a move with Jesse. He does in a big way. He surprises Jesse at one of his events which leads to three days in bed when Jesse isn't doing his thing on the bulls. This in turn leads to another weekend at Jesse's ranch way out in the country. This visit is when things start to fall apart for poor Martin as he gets slapped in the face by all the differences between him and Jesse. What can a pretty boy like Martin do on a working ranch? With dirt and animals and piles of manure? It doesn't help much when one of the ranch hands (who happens to be gay himself) treats Martin like a flaming fairy on a horse. Sure the description is accurate on so many levels but the man still shouldn't have voiced it out loud, you know. Especially in front of the man (Jesse) who signs his paychecks.
After a little back and forth between Martin and Jesse about their differences a truce is called and feelings are revealed. While not ending with a confirmed happily-ever-after, the reader can guess that there will be one in the future. Martin and Jesse, worlds apart and all that, are 100% meant for each other.
The secondary characters are a blast. The other two "Cockateers", Curt and Dale, are so funny I found myself laughing only a page into the book. They are so stereotypical, though Curt tries hard to come across as a bit of a hard ass. It doesn't work very well. Granted, the flamboyance (which I normally devour in my books) was a bit over the top but had it not been the story would not have been as entertaining. The homophobe from the bar makes another appearance but he's put in his place quickly.
Overall, an outstanding short story. Most of the sex is off-page but it's pretty obvious that these guys totally work in bed.... and out. Watching the two of them as they moved toward each other was a pleasure. Highly recommended if you are looking for a nice way to spend an hour or so.
This story was provided by Dreamspinner Press in exchange for a fair and honest review.