Dead Man’s Curve by Vivien Dean is now available!
For three years, playwright Spencer Szabo has been sitting on the best work of his career — a show about the life and death of C-list fifties actor, Kip Palmer. His actress neighbor deems it wonderful. His agent calls it unmarketable. Then hotshot director Mick Darby rolls into New York and practically begs Spencer to let him put Dead Man’s Curve onstage where it belongs.
Mick’s passion is contagious, but Spencer quickly discovers they share more than professional respect. They get along as if they’ve known each other for years, while underneath their easy friendship simmers a physical attraction more intense than he’s ever experienced. It takes the threat of their lead’s flirting to shatter Mick’s policy never to get involved with someone he’s working with, but is their budding relationship really so innocent? Or is Mick holding back on what truly inspired him to seek Spencer out?
“I don’t think so, Jeremy.”
Mick’s voice rumbled past him. Spencer didn’t have time to look around before a strong hand came to rest on his shoulder, a warm thumb stroking over his nape. His body chose then to finally respond, straightening, pushing back from the chair, pushing into Mick’s unexpected — but definitely not unwanted — touch. A second hand settled on Spencer’s hip, pulling back until his ass was nestled firmly against Mick’s groin.
“We’re going to call it a night,” Mick continued. “Thanks for the game.”
Jeremy seemed to take Mick’s sudden possessiveness far more in stride than Spencer did. With an easy grin, he scooped up Spencer’s bag, holding it out and then slipping his hands into his pockets when they were free. Spencer blinked. For all intents and purposes, Jeremy didn’t look like he’d just propositioned him at all.
“Not a problem,” Jeremy said. “Though I’m surprised you lost. The way you broke those balls –”
“He threw the game,” someone at the table said.
Spencer twisted in surprise, but Mick seemed completely unruffled by the accusation, his gaze firmly on Jeremy. “See you later.” Catching Spencer’s hand, he promptly dragged him toward the front door.
The cold blasted across his heated face, far icier than earlier. A few steps away from the bar, Spencer pulled free and stopped short on the sidewalk.
“What was that all about?” he demanded. “If you have some kind of policy about nobody fraternizing during production, tell me now. Just don’t go pulling this caveman act again, okay?”
Mick whirled and faced him, his strong jaw locked, his eyes too dark to read. “You were going to sneak off with him, weren’t you?”
“So what if I was?” He liked Mick, respected him even more, but damned if he was going to be treated like some kind of kid getting caught out by his father. “He’s hot.”
“He looks like Kip Palmer.”
“You think that’s why I wanted to fuck him?”
“So you admit it then?”
“I didn’t –” He growled in frustration. “None of this should make a difference. If you’re worried about something interfering with the production, then tell me here and now, but personally, I think you’re nuts. I’m not about to let some pretty boy mess this up. It’s too important to me.”
“That’s not the way you were acting. You haven’t been able to stop staring at the kid ever since he walked into auditions. Like he was the biggest, juiciest lollipop in the whole damn store.”
Embarrassment flooded through him. He should have known Mick would notice. “If I’m staring, it’s because he looks like Kip. That’s all.”
“And he’s hot.” Mick jabbed an accusatory finger at him. “Your words.”
“So was Kip.”
“He’s not Kip.”
“I know that!”
Mick stepped closer. “I don’t want you messing around with him. Not on my show.”
“Fine.” Hitching his pack higher on his shoulder, Spencer pivoted on his heel and headed for the subway entrance. “Maybe next time, you should make it a little bit clearer what you expect from us peons. Less room for us to fuck up and disappoint you, then.”
He didn’t make it six feet before Mick clamped a hand on his shoulder again. Mick shoved him toward the nearby building, crowding closer, stealing any room to flee by the time Spencer had turned around.
“Don’t mess around with him,” Mick reiterated.
His voice was barely audible. Spencer couldn’t even see his eyes. His lashes were downcast, fixed on something lower. He only realized what exactly Mick was staring at, when Mick crushed their mouths together.