Thank you for following the Hanging The Stars blog tour! I was very excited to return to Half Moon Bay and well, deliver West Harris his comeuppance. For this tour, I wanted to share a bit about the relationships the characters have with one another and just a bit of every day stuff as they prepare for their Christmas holiday.
As I am sure many of you are preparing for your holidays.
I’m going to keep this short and sweet because well… there’s a bit of story beneath this. But I do hope you stop by Half Moon Bay and catch up with West as a bit of his past returns in the form of Angel Daniels…the one man who broke his heart and took the pieces with him.
And be sure to enter this blog’s Hanging The Stars giveaway! The winner gets a $25 dollar gift certificate to the online vendor of their choice!
Half Moon Holiday 1
“Why are we chopping down our own tree again?” Deacon tried stamping some warmth back into his feet but all he did was jar his knees. “Jesus, I think I broke my nipples off. It’s that damned cold.”
He wasn’t sure where he was. Or rather where Lang drove them. All he knew he was bundled up that morning like he was going to climb Mount Everest and possibly arm-wrestle a Yeti. They’d driven for what felt like for hours and somehow ended up in what looked like a bit of Sherwood Forest tucked into the folds of a California hillside. The bit of snow on the ground promised a chilly morning, despite the clear sky and bright sun and that promise was delivered as soon as Deacon got out of Lang’s new Rover.
Deacon was pretty sure he was going to have to shake his balls back down once they got back to Half Moon Bay because they’d retreated from the crisp wind.
“Because it’s a family tradition,” Lang repeated patiently for what Deacon probably guessed for the hundredth time. “Or at least it was one when I lived with my grandmother. Just be glad we’re only doing one tree. Grandmother used to put up six…sometimes seven.”
“Why the hell would you need seven damned Christmas trees?” he muttered, working through the rows of trees behind Lang as his husband moved slowly through the field. “And what the heck would you put on them?”
“We’ve got a lot of ornaments. My great-grandfather had an import business, remember? The attic is full of stuff. I’ve spent weeks up there as a kid and I don’t think I’ve opened up every trunk.” Lang’s eyes grew misty, his face softened with the brush of fond memories. “Grandmother just liked Christmas trees. And food. For her, Christmas was about food and family.”
“And trees.” Deacon sidestepped a suspicious brown mound on the ground. “Tell me you didn’t have presents under all the trees or we’re going to have to have a talk with Princess Zig and expectations.”
“Only the big tree had presents under it. The one in the living room.” Lang stopped at a fragrant, tall evergreen, its needles a rich blue-grey. “It’s got to fill the front window. I like spruces. What do you like?”
“Babe, where I’m from, the trees are plastic and lopsided because they were dug out of a dumpster.” He hated the flash of pity in Lang’s glance and Deacon bit his lip, wishing he could take back his words. “It wasn’t that bad. We had Christmases. Just not… seven tree kinds.”
“To be fair, love, no one needs seven Christmas trees.” His husband reached for him, sliding a slightly chilled hand around Deacon’s waist. “We just need the one and I think I just found it.”
The tree Lang stood in front of had to be at least eight feet tall and about as wide as Deacon’s arms stretched out. It looked…expensive, something he’d see at a shopping mall or in front of a church where people arranged Nativity scenes nearby and drank spiced apple cider out of pewter mugs. It was the kind of tree that had a presence, strong enough to bear generations of ornaments and too regal for anything as crass as fake aluminum garland.
Lang looked at it like he’d just fallen in love.
“We just need to chop it down now and then they’ll come and put it in that net sleeve thing they use.” Lang eyed the ax, a dubious gleam in his eye. “Okay, I’ve never chopped down a tree in my life. You?”
“Sweetheart, until a few months ago, I’d never built an actual fire in a fireplace and I’ve just learned how to split a log. Kind of. Mostly,” Deacon reminded him. “Didn’t the guy down the hill say they’d chop it down for an extra twenty or is the bringing-the-tree-down a part of the whole tradition your grandmother started business?”
“My grandmother never chopped a tree down in her life either. Hell, she barely gardened. Mostly I think she just liked wearing big straw hats with veils on them and puttering about with white gloves on,” he frowned, scratching his cheek. “Come to think of it, the last few times we came to get the trees, I held them up while Angel hacked at the bottoms until they landed on me. Gran just pointed out the ones she wanted then headed back to sit in the car with the heaters going full blast.”
“Yeah, right.” Deacon nodded. “Want to stay here and ward off any poachers while I go get somebody to chop this thing down? Or do you want to us to take a whack at it.”
A burst of cold air struck them and Lang shivered despite Deacon taking the brunt of it. Pressing his lips together, Lang removed his steamed up glasses and gave Deacon a slow, owlish blink. The temperature seemed to drop around them as Deacon’s heartbeat skipped a little when Lang unconsciously leaned into him, seeking out Deacon’s heat.
“Here, hold onto this.” Lang handed Deacon the ax. “I’ve got a twenty in my wallet and the Rover’s got a damned good heater.”
Hanging the Stars (Half Moon Bay #2) by Rhys Ford
Angel Daniels grew up hard, one step ahead of the law and always looking over his shoulder. A grifter’s son, he’d learned every con and trick in the book but ached for a normal life. Once out on his own, Angel returns to Half Moon Bay where he once found…and then lost…love.
Now, Angel’s life is a frantic mess of schedules and chaos. Between running his bakery and raising his troubled eleven-year-old half-brother, Roman, Angel has a hectic but happy life. Then West Harris returns to Half Moon Bay and threatens to break Angel all over again by taking away the only home he and Rome ever had.
When they were young, Angel taught West how to love and laugh but when Angel moved on, West locked his heart up and threw away the key. Older and hardened, West returns to Half Moon and finds himself face-to-face with the man he’d lost. Now, West is torn between killing Angel or holding him tight.
But rekindling their passionate relationship is jeopardized as someone wants one or both of them dead, and as the terrifying danger mounts, neither man knows if the menace will bring them together or forever tear them apart.
Purchase Hanging the Stars (Half Moon Bay #2) at: Dreamspinner, Amazon, and ARe .
Hanging the Stars Blog Tour Stops
Nov 30: It’s About the Book (https://itsaboutthebook.com/)
Dec 1: Boy Meets Boy (http://www.boymeetsboyreviews.com)
Dec 2: Love Bytes (http://lovebytesreviews.com/)
Dec 3: Prism Alliance (http://www.prismbookalliance.com/)
Dec 4: Sinfully Gay Romance (http://sinfullymmbookreviews.blogspot.com/)
Dec 5: The Novel Approach (http://thenovelapproachreviews.com/)
Dec 7: Joyfully Jay (http://joyfullyjay.com/)
About Rhys Ford
Rhys Ford is an award-winning author with several long-running LGBT+ mystery, thriller, paranormal, and urban fantasy series and was a 2016 LAMBDA finalist with her novel, Murder and Mayhem. She is published by Dreamspinner Press and DSP Publications.
She’s also quite skeptical about bios without a dash of something personal and really, who doesn’t mention their cats, dog and cars in a bio? She shares the house with Yoshi, a grumpy tuxedo cat and Tam, a diabetic black pygmy panther, as well as a ginger cairn terrorist named Gus. Rhys is also enslaved to the upkeep a 1979 Pontiac Firebird and enjoys murdering make-believe people
Rhys’ Blog: http://www.rhysford.com