Queer British Lovecraftian historical romantic suspense set in 1920s London.
Lew Tyler is dragged from 2016 to 1920 by an accident with border magic whilst he’s searching for his missing friend. He’s struggling to get to grips with life a century before he was born. Detective Alec Carter is trying to solve gruesome murders in his patch of London, weighed down with exhaustion and a jaded attitude to most of his fellow humans after four years of war. In the middle of a murder investigation that involves wild magic, mysterious creatures and illegal sexual desire, will Alec and Lew work out who is safe to trust?
Sergeant Will Grant, Alec’s right-hand man, is drawn to the mysterious Fenn. Is Fenn a man or a woman? Does Will care? And Fenn ... Fenn has a secret. They live beyond the border between 1920s London and the magical Outlands and they need to get home. Are they prepared to achieve that by double crossing Alec, Will, and Lew?
Two couples hold the fabric of reality in their hands. Will it make them or break them? Contains the stories:
Lost in Time: Gruesome murders taking place across 1920s London draw Lew and Alec together through the desolation of the East End and the smoky music clubs of Soho. They both have secrets that could get them arrested or killed. In the middle of a murder investigation that involves wild magic, mysterious creatures and illegal sexual desire, who is safe to trust?
Shadows on the Border: In 1920s London, Lew and his lover Detective Alec Carter are working out the parameters of their new relationship. Lew is torn between staying in the past and trying to get back to 2016. Alec is wrestling with the idea both of being in love and Lew being a magician. Meanwhile Alec’s sergeant, Will Grant, is drawn to the mysterious Fenn, a hunter from the Outlands.
The Hunted and the Hind: Inadvertently tumbling through the border after Fenn, Sergeant Will Grant of the Metropolitan Police has spent three months in prison. When Fenn frees him, they step through the border to the Egyptian desert. It’s a two week trip back to England, with the possibility of pursuit. Will the journey give Fenn and Will time to resolve the feelings they have been dancing around since the day they met?
EXCERPT FROM Lost in Time:
He parked the department's Model-T on the small lane off Hackney High Street where Tyler indicated and followed the man up a flight of steps from a small courtyard, behind what looked like a laundry. Tyler unlocked the door and looked at him. "Come in. You can wait in here." He threw his damp cap and 'cycle goggles onto a table that clearly served for kitchen and dining, shucked his coat and gestured to a battered settee in front of a cold grate. "Would you like a drink?" He was un-stoppering a half-full bottle of whisky and sloshing it into two glasses as he spoke.
Alec shut the door and leaned back against it, his arms folded. "How did you know him?"
He kept his gaze uncompromising.
The hand holding the bottle froze in mid-air and then very carefully replaced it on the counter. "I didn't know him."
The stopper of the bottle was replaced with deliberation.
"Do you want me to take you down to Wapping for questioning?"
More silence. Tyler lifted the glass and took a long slug. He turned to face Alec and Alec suddenly realized that he could have read the young man incorrectly and that he was face to face with the killer. He wasn't as young as he had initially thought, now Alec was looking at him with a professional eye, and his hands and arms were sinewy and muscled where he'd undone his sleeves. His eyes were dark-chocolate colored, shot through with lighter hazel -- almost gold -- hooded and wary; and there was a smear of what looked like blood on his fingers where he was gripping the glass and another on his cheek. He told himself that Tyler couldn't have killed the man -- he'd have been covered in blood, the way the throat had been ripped out. But he knew the victim. Alec was sure of it.
Tyler raised the glass again and tossed the rest of the contents back; then turned and went to refill it. Alec caught himself watching the play of his shoulders under his shirt and a little frisson of desire shivered through him. Hell. That was the last thing he needed.
Tyler turned back to Alec, both glasses in hand and caught him looking. He held one out to him, clearly dismissing what he'd seen. "Do you want this?"
Alec unfolded from the door and took it. He gestured to the other man's fingers. "You touched him."
He said it flatly, not a question.
Another pause. Tyler stared into his glass and Alec drank some of his. The bite of the spirit steadied him a little.
"Just as I was setting up the shot. Not deliberately."
Again, he was lying.
Alec stepped toward the small table where Tyler had put down his camera kit and placed his glass down with a deliberate clunk on the surface. Then he took off his hat and his coat and threw them over the chair-back of one of the mismatched wooden dining chairs before he took another drink.
"Get going with the pictures, then."
Let it play out, he told himself. Wait. Just let it play out.
He sat down on the battered settee, crossed his arms, and stretched his legs out, tilting his head back against the cushions and keeping eye contact with Tyler all the time. Tyler threw back the remains of his second drink and picked up his kit.
"Dark room's through there," he muttered, gesturing at a door. "Not much space in there."
"I'll wait here." Alec was laconic.
He was more tired than he thought -- a long day followed by two hours sleep, then being woken again by Grant when the call came in. It was pleasant sitting in the relatively warm flat, listening to the rain outside. It was proper rain now rather than the dank drizzle of earlier and he thought absently to himself that anything left at the scene would be washed away by the time he could get back there to have another look. His eyes started to droop and he let them, lulled by the sound.