Length: 52,000 words
Housemates Series – though a series, each book can be read as a standalone.
Watching Judes cam show stirs desires Shawns always denied…
Shawn is adrift. Recently graduated, hes stuck in a dead-end job that barely pays the bills. His girlfriend dumped him, his friends have moved on, and hes still in Plymouthgoing nowhere.
Jude is a student living in the same shared house. Out and proud, hes everything Shawns been running from since he hit puberty. When Shawn discovers Jude works as a cam boy, he cant resist the urge to watch one of his shows. It makes Shawn want things that scare him, yet his fascination forces him to confront his attraction.
Keen to explore his bicurious side, Shawn suggests they do a show together. Jude agrees, and things get complicatedand kinkyfast. But Jude isnt looking to get involved with someone so deep in the closet. If Shawns going to get what he wants, he needs to find the courage to stop hiding from himself and be honest about who he is.
Back in the living room, he threw himself into his armchair again. The TV was on, showing an old episode of Prison Break, but Shawn wasnt paying attention to it. Sunk in a black hole of despondency, he gazed surreptitiously around the room at his housemates instead.
Jude, one of the new guys whod moved in last month, sat in a corner of one of the sofas doing something on his phone, his dark curly head bending low and the glow of the screen lighting up his angular features. Shawn wondered what he was doingprobably hooking up on Grindr or something.
That twist of discomfort flared in his gut again. He knew he shouldnt care. It was none of his business, but the idea that Jude might be planning some hook-up with some random guy lodged in his consciousness like a stone in a shoe. Maybe it was just because Shawn was single again and would have to get back to hooking up if he wanted any action. The idea of being back on Tinder wasnt as appealing as it should be.
Shawn turned his attention to the other sickeningly happy couple in the room. Ewan wasnt technically one of Shawns housemates. He lived next door, but he might as well have moved in for the amount of time he spent there with Dev. Ewan had his arm around Dev, and as Shawn watched, he turned his ginger head and murmured something in Devs ear. Dev turned to look at him and they exchanged a soft smile. Then Dev pressed a kiss to Ewans lips, which lingered long enough to make Shawn uncomfortable.
Irrational anger bubbled up, spilling out of his mouth before he could hold the words back. For fucks sake. Cant you save that for your room?
Dev pulled away quickly, his cheeks flaming. Sorry, he muttered.
Ewan glared at Shawn. Whats your problem?
Shawn shrugged and glared back. I just dont need to see it, thats all.
Well, the televisions over there, so stop fucking looking at us if you dont like it. It was just a kiss. Its not like were blowing each other on the sofa or anything. Jesus.
Ugh. And thank you for that mental image. Shawn did a mock shudder.
Whoa, Shawn. What the hells wrong with you tonight?
Jezs voice cut through Shawns drunken, angry haze, and he realised that all eyes in the room were on him. He caught Judes gaze, curious and assessing, and flushed at the unwanted attention.
You should be used to it by now, Jez continued. Youve lived with me and Mac long enough. And Ive totally caught you groping Beth on the sofa before. You dont get a free pass for living room shenanigans just because youre the only straight couple in the house since Dani moved out.
That was the spark that ignited Shawns anger past the point of no return. Yeah? Well, maybe Im just tired of being surrounded by all the gay in here. I never signed up for this when we moved in together. He stood, sloshing beer out of his nearly full bottle and onto the carpet. I dont have to like it.
Feel free to find somewhere else to live, then.
Even Jez, who was rarely moved to anger, sounded pissed now.
Yeah. Maybe I will. Shawn stormed to the door, careful not to ruin his exit by walking into the coffee table again. Oh, and for your information? Me and Beth split up today, so we wont be the token straight couple any more.
He slammed the door behind him and stomped up the stairs to his room on the first floor. He slammed that door too, but it didnt make him feel any better. After throwing himself down on the bed, he clutched his pillow and let harsh sobs of fury burst out of him until the red mist receded and shame and guilt crept in to fill the place where his anger had been.
Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England. He comes from a family of writers, but always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed him by. He spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content.
One day, Jay decided to try and write a short storyjust to see if he couldand found it rather addictive. He hasnt stopped writing since.
Jay writes contemporary romance about men who fall in love with other men. He has five books published by Dreamspinner Press, and also self-publishes under the imprint Jaybird Press. Many of his books are now available as audiobooks.
Jay is transgender and was formerly known as she/her.
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