Darryl Tackas needs a miracle — he wants to find the man who makes him whole. Running Start Me Up and helping other men find their happy endings is great, but Darryl wants a happy ever after of his own. When he learns Lew has a crush on him, Darryl hopes magic will spark between them.
Lew George has wanted Darryl for so long, but he’s been too shy to make a move. When a mutual friend hooks them up, Lew can’t hold back. He’s sure he’s found the one, but can they really have a forever together?
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Copyright ©2021 Megan Slayer
Darryl watched the pretty boys at the bar, and part of him wished he could convince one to come home with him. The rest of him knew the handsome young men wouldn’t choose him. He had fifteen years on most of them and had seen life. They’d want someone with fewer miles on them.
He wouldn’t be the right fit.
He shifted on the barstool. One day, he’d find someone. He’d thought he had with Owen. He’d loved Owen. Thought they’d have a long future together. That they’d grow old and have a house together.
Then the accident happened, and his life changed.
Fucking hell. He’d never forget seeing Owen on the ground. His heart remained with his lover.
But he couldn’t grieve with everyone else. He’d had to watch from the sidelines when Owen was buried because Owen’s family despised him. They didn’t want Owen to be gay. Besides that, he’d never really healed because, after five years, he hadn’t given himself the chance to move on. It was time, but he had no idea how to do it or with whom.
He had the gift to bring people back from the dead, to give them a second chance at life, but he couldn’t fix his own. What a shame!
“Darryl.” Bob, the co-owner of Start Me Up, their electronics shop, joined him at the bar. He sat next to Darryl. “Watching the wildlife?”
“Yeah.” He chuckled. “I guess I am. What are you doing here? Aren’t you going to see Louise?”
“I was, but she’s busy.” Bob shrugged. “We do this sometimes, you know? We take breaks. It’s a matter of time. We’ve been together for ten years, but we get tired. It’s silly, but the off-time makes us stronger.”
“Whatever makes you happy.” He didn’t see the point of breaks, but he’d have to be with someone first.
“It doesn’t always work, but we come back to each other.” Bob ordered a beer. “Why don’t you get a date?”
“I don’t know if I’m ready.” Would he ever be ready? “Who would want me? I spend a lot of time at the store and in the dark. I’m a nerd.”
“No, you’re not. You’re hurting.” Bob bumped shoulders with him. “But there are guys out there who could love you in the way you need.”
“Yeah?” He finished his beer. “Got any suggestions?”
“Actually, I do.”
“What? I can’t imbue one of my robots with Owen’s spirit. It’s too late.” He placed the bottle on the bar. “None of these guys, right? They’re too young.”
“Hell, yes, they are. You weren’t even born in the same decade.” Bob laughed. “No, the one I have in mind is Lew.”
“Lew?” He stared at Bob. “You’re kidding. He and I are friends. I don’t know if it’d work to change the relationship. He helps us.”
“He does, without expecting payment,” Bob said. “Do you really think he does that out of the kindness of his heart? He does it because he loves you.”
“He told you that?” He’d never gotten a hint that Lew felt that way.
“He didn’t have to say it out loud. It’s obvious.” Bob downed more of his beer. “Why don’t you go to the shop? He’s got a line on someone needing your special help.”
“Another soul to save?”
“Satisfaction guaranteed.” Bob finished his beer. “Go. I’ll see you tomorrow.” He left the bar.
Darryl snorted. Bob had left without paying for his beer. The jerk. Darryl paid for both and left a tip, then walked out of the bar.
Darryl strode into the night and headed for his shop. Summer parties rang out from the various apartment balconies. He enjoyed parties. Hell, he’d had a good time with Rascal and Gage at their parties. But he hated being alone.
When he opened the door to the shop, he spotted Lew at the counter. “Hi,” Darryl said. He locked the door behind him. “I hear you have someone for me. Who is the person needing help?”
“Not just anyone,” Lew said. “I want you to help me.”
“You?” He tamped down his intrigue and rounded the counter. “How? You’re not dying, are you?” Fuck, he didn’t want that to happen.
“No, I’m not.” Lew chuckled. “But I need satisfaction.”
“Oh?” He leaned on the counter. “I’m listening.”
“I’m tired of being alone. I’m tired of going home to an empty apartment. You seem to know who to help and who to ignore. I’m hoping you can help me with that special gift you have. Find that perfect someone for me.”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Megan Slayer, aka Wendi Zwaduk, is a multi-published, award-winning author of more than one-hundred short stories and novels. She’s been writing since 2008 and published since 2009. Her stories range from the contemporary and paranormal to LGBTQ and white hot themes. No matter what the length, her works are always hot, but with a lot of heart. She enjoys giving her characters a second chance at love, no matter what the form. She’s been nominated at the LRC for Best Author, Best Contemporary, Best Ménage, Best BDSM and Best Anthology. Her books have made it to the bestseller lists on various e-tailer sites.
When she’s not writing, Megan spends time with her husband and son as well as three dogs and three cats. She enjoys art, music and racing, but football is her sport of choice. She’s an active member of the Friends of the Keystone-LaGrange Public library.