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Layne, River & Damion

ManLoveRomance Press LLC

Heat Rating: STEAMY
Word Count: 14,000
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It has taken Damion Martin six months to finally start to get over the startling break-up from his partner Layne Haylse. They'd been high school sweethearts and blissfully in love. Then the man suddenly wanted nothing to do with him. Having to work with him at Yale University almost every day made the separation that much harder. Meeting the young marketing major, River Cunningham, may just be the ticket to helping Damion heal.

But they say that to every story there's two sides, and the truth lies somewhere in the middle. When a harrowing blizzard crashes through Connecticut, trapping all three men inside the campus library, they will soon find that sometimes things aren't as black and white as they seem. When the truth is revealed, it may change their lives forever.


Chapter One

The distant sound of the janitor's radio penetrated the study haze surrounding him and River Cunningham was sorely tempted to see if he possessed the powers of Carrie and send the object sailing through the nearest window. With a loud sigh, he turned another page of the Marketing Strategies tome in front of him. Why in the world had he waited until the last minute to start working on this project? He was more than aware of the fact that everyone else in his class had begun their research projects and subsequent papers as soon as Professor Dobson had assigned them, but River had procrastinated.

As always.

His mother called him the "Master of Procrastination." She had been more than a little surprised that he had even gotten accepted into Yale University. "I was certain you would forget the due date of the admission application and would end up attending a community college." Her laugh, full and boisterous, just like his father's, had filled the living room where they'd been sitting. Her thick, dark red curls had bounced on her shoulders, catching the light and shining like a ruby, and River hadn't been able to do anything but smile. He really couldn't tell her that he'd pretty much psyched himself out. He had put the due date of the admission application and materials an entire month before they were actually due, which meant they had been turned in, two weeks early.

Go him.

Realizing he was daydreaming, River shook his head and tugged his finger out of his hair. He'd worn the thick, dark red hair, something he'd inherited from his mother, down this morning, and he completely regretted it. While he loved his hair, and his boyfriend—ex-boyfriend—had loved it too, always tugging on the strands and burying his face in it; River often got distracted by it. He shoved the locks back and pulled it into a ponytail at the base of his neck before returning his attention to his notes. He needed to get back to work. For the first time, the library was suspiciously devoid of other students, only the librarian, the janitor, and him were inside right now, and River wanted to take advantage of having carte blanche of the research materials.

"Reports are coming in from a reporter in Philadelphia who states that the snowstorm appears to be growing in intensity and hitting from three separate areas. Much like the blizzard in '93. I think we may be facing a very serious blizzard over the next few days, Marva. So if you are living within the path of the storm, it is best that you are prepared to spend a lot of time in front of the fireplace or the heater, with no place to go. This is Andrew Zax of XKLT 1830 AM Connecticut News."

River shook his head. Meteorologists were a bunch of alarmists. He turned his head to look out one of the windows of the library, the smattering of snowflakes that drifted past the glass plane making a liar of Andrew Zax. River scoffed. He didn't know why everyone was freaking out over a little bit of frozen rain. That's all snow was. The people in Connecticut were behaving as if they had never experienced winter before. The three inches of snow River had tromped through to get to the library was nothing compared to his family's vacation to Nova Scotia, Canada a few years previous. Now that was a snowstorm. River was pretty sure a person had never experienced a true blizzard until they'd experienced one in the Great White North.

River grit his teeth as the janitor's cart approached, the wheel squeaking as it got closer. He narrowed his eyes, raising his finger, prepared to shush the campus employee, but his reprimand got lodged in his lungs as he stared at the broad shouldered, dark-brown-skinned, black man, walking behind the maintenance cart.

Holy. Fucking. Shit.

The man looked exactly like Morris Chestnut and, trying to be as discreet as possible, River grabbed his cellphone out of the back of his jeans pocket and lifted it in front of his face as if he were texting in order to snap a picture. He took three or four rapid pictures, especially one of the stranger bending over, because... yum... and lowered the phone back to the table and sent the photos to his best friend Michelle.

The warm breath on the side of his neck startled him and he let out a loud squeak.

"I hope you got some good pictures there, jailbait. Though you really didn't get my best side. I look much better with my clothes off."

River's mouth dropped open and he stared as the janitor winked at him before turning to walk off.

River fell back against his chair, his eyes sliding closed. He covered his face, his cheeks burning hotly in embarrassment. He couldn't believe that he'd been caught! More than that, the janitor had seemed amused... no, almost flirtatious with him about it. In what universe did that happen to him?

Before River could dwell on it any further, his phone vibrated on the table in front of him. Reaching out, he snatched up his cell to check Michelle's response before the librarian had a chance to chastise him. The guy was hot, just as hot as the janitor, but he was a stick-in-the mud. Way too strict.

Sliding his finger across the screen, River read the message and covered his mouth to stop the laugh that tried to burst free.

If you need tips on how to have sex with Morris Chestnut, I think the campus library has the Kama Sutra in the Reference Section under Gender and Sexuality Studies.

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