That's juvenile, I know, but I just couldn't resist. I suppose I could have, but really, why would I? I was going to say something like "Happy post Cinco de Mayo" or something...pretty lame, huh?
Okay, now that we're officially dissected my greeting, let me see what's on the agenda for today. Mostly, I wanted to come by and say hello. After that, I figured I'd post a few excerpts from some of my Torquere books--just for the fun of it--and then later, I'll talk a little about some upcoming books.
Also, before I forget, I'll be posting excerpts from future books of mine and other authors on my Coffee Time Romance forum from May 12--May 19. Here's where you'll go to find my group. Just click there, sign up, and I'll approve you as quick as I can.
So, here's a couple of little excerpts from The Agency. I hope to have a few more of those to hand in later this year.
About The Agency: Marek & Tyrone and Vanya & LanceWritten by J.J. Massa
Held together and directed by the strength of one person, known only as The Old Man, The Agency acts as the world’s anti-terrorist organization. Regardless of race, creed, or sociopolitical backgrounds, talented young people are gathered, trained, and their skills put to good use, making the world a safer place. Every agent has a tale to tell, every Agency employee comes with a story.
This double novella features Tyrone and Marek. Tyrone is a cook, Marek a crack agent also known as "the Shadow", whose love may surprise everyone. The second story pairs Agency operative Lancelot and biochemist Vanya, who team up to stop a major terrorist operation. See what stories The Old Man finds most entertaining. Join The Agency today!
The Agency: Marek and Tyrone
By J.J. Massa
Tyrone Johnson was aware the minute the furtive young man slid through the cafeteria doors. It had to be an internal thing because no sound was heard. He barely saw the flicker of movement out of the corner of his eye.
Still, he’d been waiting for this customer all night. Even knowing he wouldn’t be in until the place was empty, Tyrone had been anxious for his arrival.
“Hey there,” he said, keeping his deep voice low as the thin blond slid his tray along the counter.
His answer was a terse nod.
“So, how’s that sweet tooth of yours?” Tyrone asked quietly, his tone gentle and lightly teasing. He’d noticed that the junkyard thin man sometimes ate only desserts.
Dark gold eyes met his suspiciously. “Is hungry,” came his rusty, croaked reply.
Tyrone covertly looked him over. The spare frame looked even thinner than the last time he’d seen him. Paler, too, in fact.
“Well that’s just fine,” Tyrone smiled. “Jus’ fine. I’ve got something for you. Made it fresh.” He had to turn away from the startled look on the pallid white face. Leaning down, he fished around under the counter and produced a pecan pie, made special that very morning. “Here you go, friend.” He placed the glass pie plate on the counter. “Let me cut it for you. Come on, we’ll go over here to a table.”
Tyrone slid the sugary pie off the counter and turned, carrying it to a table in the corner. He didn’t look back to see if the other man was following. It might go either way. He couldn’t stop the smile blooming on his face when the almost-emaciated body slipped into a nearby chair.
“Is…” Wary eyes looked at the pie and then up at Tyrone. “It is mine?”
“Made it just for you. Knew you’d like it. It’s good for you, too, with the nuts and all,” Tyrone babbled, turning and cutting the pie. He deposited a gooey slice of the sweet, syrupy confection onto an empty plate. “I’m Tyrone, in case you didn’t know,” he mumbled, wiping his hands on his cooks’ apron, for want of something to do.
“I am a spy,” the other man said dryly, shrugging his shoulders, a smile flitting across his face. “Marek,” he said with a nod, a forkful of pie making it clear that he had nothing else to say.
“Marek,” Tyrone repeated, sinking into the vacant chair opposite. “Is that Dutch?”
He was thrilled and a little stunned. He’d been nervous that his attentions would chase the other man away. Netting a name and a smile in the same visit was a lottery. Not to mention that this was the most talkative the thin blond had ever been.
“Mmmm,” Marek groaned, audibly enjoying his pie. “Slav,” he mumbled.
Taking yet another chance, Tyrone stuck a hand out. “Pleased to meet you, Marek,” he said.
Marek studied the extended hand for long moments. Tyrone let it hang there, though he was beginning to feel awkward. Just when he’d decided to pull back, Marek’s bony fingers brushed his palm.
“Thank you for this pie, Tyrone,” Marek said formally, adding, “It is very good.”
Tyrone could no more stop the grin spreading across his face than he could stop the sunrise, and that’s what it felt like, holding the thin hand in his. “I really hoped you’d like…” his breath caught at the sight of angry red welts wrapped around the wrist and forearm of his companion. He felt his eyes moisten. “Marek?” Someone had hurt him. He reached across the table and covered the welts with his free hand.
For a second, Marek attempted to pull his hand away; he stopped, instead reaching over, tapping lightly at Tyrone’s thick wrist. “It is over now, I am here.” He looked down and over again at Tyrone. “Here with this pie.” His lips turned up briefly, producing that elusive smile that Tyrone loved. “I am here with this pie and you.”
The Agency: Vanya and Lance
The Agency: Vanya and Lance
By J.J. Massa
The very idea of touching and being touched by the stranger in the picture terrified him, even sickened him. Conversely, leaning against Lancelot Morgan’s broad chest and having the agent’s muscular arm around him–that felt better than anything ever had in his entire life. He felt safe and he was reluctant to give that up.
“I do not know how,” he confessed in a whisper, face pressed to the starched white shirt of the older man.
“You don’t… What? You’re afraid that….” Vanya felt Lancelot take a deep breath. “Okay,” the larger man shifted around and tilted Vanya’s face up with one hand. “How about this?” he began, “You’ve kissed someone before haven’t you?”
“Ni, no, no kiss, no um, how you say, mitsno obiymaty, is embrace with arms, is hug. No,” he repeated becoming upset again. “My inadequacies will cause death, injury! I cannot do this! I cannot!”
He struggled to move from Lancelot’s tight embrace but the larger man held him fast. “Hush! Be still,” Lancelot admonished, both arms going around him now. “We are partners on this case, Vanya. We’ll figure this out together.” Vanya struggled halfheartedly one last time. “Together, Vanya,” Lancelot repeated, giving him a hard squeeze.
“I am having hug now, yes?” Vanya wheezed, causing Lancelot to laugh and loosen his hold slightly.
“Yes, little professor, and if you put your arms around me, we’ll both be having a hug,” Vanya could hear the smile in Lancelot’s voice.
Slowly, shyly, Vanya eased first one arm and then the other around Lancelot’s ribs until his hands clutched at the smooth muscles of the other man’s back. They sat silently for a minute and Vanya reveled in the warm closeness of his first hug.
When he felt Lancelot shift slightly, he drew back and looked up at him. “You will show me how, yes?” he asked, so grateful for the other man’s presence. “You will teach me?”
Lancelot looked down into the pleading eyes of the little chemist and was lost. Vanya didn’t need perfect English to make himself clear. Lance understood that the man in his arms had never made love with anybody, ever, and he wanted Lancelot to teach him how to seduce someone.
While Lancelot doubted that this innocent little man could ever purposely seduce anyone, Dr. Havalon would expect Vanya to be experienced with men. If not, their hand would be tipped. Besides, he reasoned, it wasn’t right that the young man’s first sexual experience be a job.
Sliding one hand up to cup the back of Vanya’s tilted head, Lancelot sunk his fingers into the gilded silk of his hair and lowered his lips to caress the pounding pulse at his temple.
“I’ll teach you,” he agreed, moving to kiss first the left eye, then the right, and ending with a kiss on his nose.
“I feel odd,” Vanya whispered. “My heart, it beats fast and I feel both cold and hot. My limbs shake. Perhaps I am ill?”
“No, Professor,” Lancelot murmured warmly, brushing his lips across a smooth cheek. “You aren’t ill, you’re excited. And maybe you’re attracted to me just a little?”
Vanya tilted his head and Lancelot fought a smile as the studious young man analyzed that statement.
“I have long admired your looks. You are tall and muscular. Strong with dark hair and dark eyes. If only I were more….”
Lancelot cut him off by dropping a light kiss on Vanya’s startled mouth. “Not one more word,” he growled. “You are a very attractive man, Vanya. I thought so this morning and I think so now.”
Saying the words and looking into Vanya’s innocent and open face, Lancelot knew he was telling the truth. The minute he’d seen that mischievous twinkle in those intelligent and slightly exotic eyes, his blood had pooled and heated in his groin. It had surged again when he’d seen that disheveled, sun kissed mop in The Old Man’s office.
For Lancelot, teaching Dr. Vanya Ambrozak about the pleasures of the flesh would not be a hardship--not at all.