Authors: Keta Diablo
Tags: #Keta Diablo, #crossroads, #phaze books, #suspense, #homoerotic, #baltimore
Published by Phaze
Also by Keta Diablo
This is an explicit and erotic novel
intended for the enjoyment
of adult readers. Please keep
out of the hands of children.
A novella of homoerotic suspense by
2009 by Keta Diablo
All rights reserved
under the International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. No part of this
book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic
or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage
and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.
This is a work of
fiction. Names, places, characters and incidents are either the product of the
author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to any
actual persons, living or dead, organizations, events or locales is entirely
A Phaze Production
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Phaze is an imprint
of Mundania Press, LLC.
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Cover art © 2008,
Skyla Dawn Cameron
Edited by Denise
eBook ISBN-13: 978-1-59426-778-9
First Edition –
Printed in the
United States of America
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unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal.
Criminal copyright infringement, including infringement without monetary gain,
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fine of $250,000.
Thomas Kincaid sat up in his bed and
glanced at the alarm clock on his nightstand. Four AM. What had awakened him?
Something, but his sleep-numbed brain couldn’t remember if he’d been dreaming
or not. Snoozer didn’t bark, and Lord knows the beloved mongrel yelped if a
leaf dashed against the windowpane.
Ah, that’s right, the yipper accompanied
his mother to the cabin for the weekend. He wanted to join them, but promised
his professor his term paper,
Human Cloning: Catastrophe or Medical
would be on his desk first thing Monday morning.
shrouded him. He shouldn’t have gone to the bar tonight. Should’ve stayed home
and finished the damn paper.
He paused for a moment, listening. So
slight, he almost failed to hear the subdued footsteps. His heart banged
against his rib cage and a surge of adrenaline pumped through his body. What
should he do, and where in hell had he left his cell phone? A silent groan left
his lips. He’d left it in his backpack on the kitchen table, and the only live
phone in the house sat on the bureau in his mom’s bedroom.
He pushed the covers back and rose from
bed. With the stealth of a cat-burglar, he walked toward the far wall and
plucked his Little League bat from the wall—the one he used to hit the only
homerun of his life. Not much of a weapon, but he felt more secure clutching
the bat in his hand. He opened his bedroom door slowly, one inch at a time.
The bedrooms faced the backyard, and
around the neatly trimmed lawn and flower beds stood a privacy fence. He
learned long ago how to scale it. For some reason, he felt certain the noise
had come from the kitchen, or perhaps the great room in the front of the house.
His choices seemed simple—reach his cell phone or his mother’s room. Somehow,
he had to call for help.
The noise grew louder. Whoever entered
the house seemed emboldened by the lack of response from its inhabitants. He
slunk into the hallway and warred over which direction to take, left to the
live phone line or right to the kitchen. He chose the first. Better to call
the police and climb out his mother’s window. His life held more value than
television sets, stereos, or other material items.
Please God, let it be a thief and not
some maniacal killer.
Every muscle and tendon in his body
launched into high alert. He drew several deep breaths and talked himself down.
Most intruders came for cash, jewelry, or hot items they could quickly pawn for
drug money. Hadn’t he read somewhere most weren’t armed? Even if he hadn’t read
it, the thought comforted him.
He moved down the hallway toward his
mother’s room as quiet as a church mouse, his only thought being to get to that
phone. Still clutching the bat in his right hand, he slipped into the room,
dashed toward the phone, and lifted the receiver with his left hand. At the
lack of a dial tone, his heart sunk. Someone cut the line.
A whisper warned him the burglar stood
right outside the bedroom door. He froze and a sickening feeling took flight in
his gut. This couldn’t be happening; this only happened to others, strangers
you read about in the newspaper.
The headlines loomed behind his eyelids―
Fourth Student Found Dead in
The door creaked open, the sound reminding him of a scene
straight out of
Friday the Thirteenth
. A shadow—tall, dark, and
intimidating—moved into the room. Through a shaft of moonlight, he saw the gun
in the man’s hand, a nine millimeter he thought. In the other, the man held a
flashlight and shined it into Thomas’ face.
Confusion stormed through his mind. He’d
know that voice anywhere. “You! What are you doing here?”
“And I thought you’d be so happy to see
Frank McGuire logged off his laptop when
the font door of his townhome opened. He drew in a deep breath, gathered his
thoughts, and glanced at his watch. Not much time to accomplish his mission,
but enough to get to the bottom of Rand’s recent behavior.
He rummaged through a nearby drawer
until he found what he wanted, then walked into the kitchen and stood at the
high counter opposite Rand. “Stopped home for lunch, huh?”
“One hour before my next class,” Rand
said, stuffing several chunks of watermelon into his mouth.
“How are you doing this semester?”
“Good,” Rand said, avoiding his eyes.
“Why aren’t you at work?”
“I’m on my way in, but waited to talk to
“I thought you were meeting with
Jeffords and some big hot dog from the FBI this morning.”
“They’re waiting for me, and stop
changing the subject.”
Frank cocked his head to the side and
shook it. “Listen, pretty boy, I’ve lived with you long enough to know when
something’s rotten in Denmark. Think of me as a Blue Tick Coonhound sniffing
out a raccoon.”
“Dumb me.” Rand plucked a handful of grapes
from the bowl and continued with his mouth full. “I thought you found missing
people for a living after connecting with your Inner Spirit.”
“I do, and that’s why I want you to have
a better job, a better life.” Frank plopped onto the stool. “So, how are your
classes going: Anatomy, Physics, and all the courses you need for Pre-Med?”
A moment of panic flitted through Rand’s
deep green eyes, but his voice remained calm. “Good, I’m expecting A’s and B’s
“Your expectations have fallen a little
short,” Frank said, tossing a printout of his grades onto the counter.
Rand’s body tensed, so imperceptibly
most wouldn’t have noticed, but Frank knew every nuance of that perfect body…and
every inch. “C’s and C minuses right down the line. Oh, I stand corrected, a D
“I can explain,” Rand said, licking his
“I’m sure you have something prepared,
but I’m not interested. Refresh my memory about our agreement when you came to
Rand looked away.
“I’ll remind you. You promised if I
agreed to let you live here, you’d pull A’s and B’s, and work hard to get the
education your mom has spent thousands of dollars on.”
“My classes are so hard this semester
“Save it, Rand. You’re one of the
brightest kids on the planet, and only two reasons exist for pulling C’s and
D’s. One is laziness, the other, MJ.” Frank nodded toward the liquor cabinet.
“Or Jack Daniels.”
Rand watched him through hooded eyes and
squirmed in the chair. “I’m not smoking weed. Give me another chance. I’ll
buckle down, bring those grades up to A’s and B’s next semester.”
“Oh, I have no doubt you’ll bring them
up…every single one. Just to make sure you know I’m dead serious, finish your
lunch, drop your jeans, and head for the couch.”
“You heard me.”
“You don’t need to know until you’re
Rand pushed his plate away. “Lost my