Burke Spire has a lot going for him: he’s fit and healthy, he just won the lottery, and he recently quit his accounting job. There’s one problem, though -- he’s single and wants to find Mr. Right. Another problem: he doesn’t know how to meet the man of his dreams.
Enter Colby Blue of the True Blue Dating Agency. Colby charges a steep fee to use his dating services, but Burke thinks it’s money well spent, in hopes of finding a boyfriend, or even a husband through arranged dates. But after two horrible dates, Burke demands a private meeting with the company’s owner.
Although not one to kiss and tell, Burke complains to Colby about his bizarre and obnoxious dates. As their meeting becomes a face-to-face confrontation, neither man can deny their growing attraction to the other. Is the connection between the two men strong enough to call love, though? Or will Burke Spire forever stay lonely and single after all?
“I’m done, Mr. Blue. Your agency isn’t working for my best interest. I hate to kiss and tell in a negative action, but ... I can’t do this anymore.” Burke kept huffing, puffing, and stared at the handsome man across Colby’s desk, obviously upset. “I’ve been on three dates, all of which were terrible. This last one was quite the doozey, if you want to know the truth.” Burke rambled, detailing his time with Cal Yuell. Then he added, “Keep the twenty-four thousand dollars. I don’t want it back. And tell your staff to lose my email address. I don’t want to hear from them, arranging dates for me. There won’t be a fourth date.”
Burke became irritated since Colby simply sat behind his desk with his hands crossed, calm, cool, and collected. The owner of True Blue had an impish smirk on his face which caused him to look ten years younger. Colby didn’t blink, unwavering for what felt like a string of three hundred seconds. Then he said, “I’m sorry again. True Blue has more kinks than I ever anticipated, which I’ll take the initiative to work on. Until then, Burke, how can I make this good between us?”
Burke shook his head, flushed. This meeting with Colby Blue felt awkward; something he believed he shouldn’t have to go through. “I don’t know if you can. The guy became a Minotaur, Colby. A Minotaur. He had every intention of fucking me as a bull.”
Colby nodded. “I realize that.”
“He freaked me out.” Burke shook his head and spoke quickly, frazzled, “No, wrong. It freaked me out. I just had to get out of his apartment. I just had to bolt. I’m still sick to my stomach, thinking about the date.”
“No more dates, Burke. I promise. You won’t be hearing from my staff. You’ve opened my eyes to True Blue’s screening process and ...”
Burke cut him off with, “I don’t think you have a screening process.” It sounded more like a bark over an explanation. Burke’s ears and cheeks felt as if they were on fire, and the back of his throat had instantly turned dry. He kept blinking, thinking he was becoming dehydrated by the passing seconds, needing a glass of water, juice ... something.
Colby Blue opened and reached in to the drawer near his Brooks Brothers-covered navel. He pulled out a faux leather checkbook the size of a kid’s picture book and opened it to available, blank checks. Within seconds, he had a check made out to Burke, passing it to his client. “A full refund for your troubled experience. I’m sorry I can’t erase your dates and that this endeavor for you turned sour.” Colby’s eyebrows twisted and his forehead tightened. He leaned ever so slightly forward and whispered, “Please. Please, Burke, if I can do anything else, tell me. I feel horrible about what you’ve been through.”
Burke took the check, slipping it into a front pocket of his khakis. He shook his head and stood. Nothing could make it right between the men, he thought. Not Colby’s handsomeness, his green eyes, or his English-sloped nose. Nothing physical. Or emotional for that fact. What had been done, was done; a douche bag thing to think and say, but the truth. Juxtaposed dates that flopped were too much of an error. They could never be anything but bizarre and disastrous inside Burke’s mind; memories would probably haunt him for the rest of his life, well into his years of being a geriatric.
Time to leave, Burke thought, and walked to the office door, making his exit. And no looking back. Make this short, sweet, and to the point. Leave now and leave fast.
“Burke, wait a minute!” Colby called out, standing. He rushed to Burke: athletically, wind beneath his heels, and without any hesitation whatsoever. “Don’t leave yet.”
Burke felt Colby’s palm and fingers on his right elbow, grasping the area. Colby had actually pulled him backwards, preventing him from leaving. Surprised by the aggressive action, Burke asked, “What’s going on?”
“I ... I ... I have something to say to you before you leave.”
“Make it quick,” Burke snippily said. “I have other things to do.”
The mood changed almost suddenly, within a compact arrangement of seconds. Time seemed to have stopped as a string of quiet hung between the two men. Motion comprised of seconds and a minute felt irrelevant as Burke locked his stare with Colby’s. His heart began to do a race within his chest: bolting to and fro, deflating its chambers, and spinning beneath the protection of his ribs. Everything felt lighter and swifter. Gravity felt as if it had lifted away from the earth, pulled into space and the galaxy. Burke never experienced weightlessness before.
“I ... I ...” Colby stammered, blinked once, twice, three times. And then he fell into Burke, leashing his solid arms around the millionaire, hugging Burke against his frame, breathing on his neck and part of his face.
What’s happening? Burke thought. What’s going on?
Their chests collided. Burke didn’t understand why.
Colby sniffed along the length of Burke’s neck, inhaling. Burke didn’t understand why.
Their heartbeats quickened together, stopped, and started to beat faster, growing into some type of synchronized pattern and motion. Burke didn’t understand why.
The hug to Burke reeked of power and masculinity as their pecs and privates touched. He felt Colby’s tight stomach and privates against his own, which forced him to think, I don’t understand any of this. This is all so baffling for me.
How? When? Where? Why? ... did Colby kiss Burke, rocking Burke’s world, causing Burke -- this moment was real, right? Right! -- to lose his balance and almost fall to the office’s floor? Tumbling. Unsteady on his feet. Collapsing. Becoming unconscious. No longer capable of using his mind for anything that offered clarity and stability and surety and ...
The kiss was everything Burke imagined it would be with, and from, Colby Blue. Enlightening. Useful. Appealing. Sugary. Spine-clenching. The kiss blew Burke away, this way and that way, creating an opening or fissure of sorts inside his heart that he couldn’t label or decipher or understand, an abyss of lust, and a shapely funnel of tenderness. The kiss turned out to be the best he had ever shared with a man. The only kiss that had ever felt important in his life, meant to be and purposeful.
Then he pulled away from Colby’s grip and lips and heartbeat and privates and ...
Run! Run! Run! filled his mind. Run as fast as you can! Just run! Get out of here. Fast. Fast. Fast.
So he did.