When Misha asked to meet his best friend Roan’s new boyfriend, the last thing he expected was for that boyfriend to confess he’s a vampire. Who would blame Misha for not believing him? But he can’t deny the truth when he’s faced with facts, no matter how much he wishes he could.
Henri has spent the past ten years chained to a wall in a dungeon. He’s managed to escape, and now he’s running from his boyfriend-turned-captor before Vlad can get his hands on him again. When his best friend—and the vampire who turned him fangy—stashes him at the house of his new boyfriend’s best friend, the last thing Henri expects is to fall for the guy.
But Vlad is still out there, and Henri knows that sooner or later, he’s going to try to get to him, and that he’ll probably hurt his friends in the process. Will Misha and Henri be able to work around the unavoidable fact that Henri is a vampire? And even if they do, what’s going to happen when Vlad manages to find Henri?
Misha grinned at Roan and waved so his best friend would notice him at his table in the corner of the bar. Roan pushed back the red curl that always fell in front of his eye and grinned back, stopping to get a beer before he made his way to the table. He flopped into one of the chairs on the other side of the table and took a sip of his beer, sighing with pleasure.
Misha grinned. “The holidays were that bad?”
Roan waved Misha’s words away. “Nah. You know my family. They’re cool.”
“They’re also a lot.” With three brothers and both parents, Roan’s family holidays were always busy and noisy.
Not that Misha’s were any better. He had two sisters, both older, and one of them was married with two kids of her own. Marie wasn’t married yet, but her fiancé had spent part of the holidays with them. Misha didn’t mind the guy, but he was glad things were back to normal. He was so done with the questions about his personal life and his parents’ disapproving glances.
Misha shook his head. The holidays were over, and he wasn’t going to see his family for at least a few months, more if he found a good excuse. He needed to forget about them for the evening and focus on Roan.
Roan grinned. “Yeah, but I wasn’t with them most of the time.”
“Oh?” That wasn’t like Roan. He was close to all his brothers and his parents.
Misha understood what had happened when Roan’s smile widened. He didn’t even have to say anything. The smile was enough.
Misha leaned over the table. “How did you manage to meet someone during the holidays?”
Roan’s smile was so wide, it had to hurt his cheeks. “Bumped into him at the grocery store, actually.”
Misha laughed. “Fuck you, man. Only you would meet a guy at the grocery store.”
Roan’s smile turned sappy. “Yeah. I got lucky. Percy is…he’s great.”
“Percival, but yeah.”
“When am I meeting him?”
Misha frowned when Roan’s expression closed up. “I don’t know. It’s early days.”
“I know that, but you seem pretty far gone already. What, you’re afraid he’ll freak out if you suggest he meet your best friend?”
Roan tapped his fingertips on the table. “It’s not that.”
“What is it, then? It’s not like meeting me means he has to marry you or anything. I get that you’re still in the honeymoon stage, but I missed you over the holidays, and I’d like to see you more often again. Unless your guy has something against that?”
It wouldn’t be the first time a guy had a problem with Roan and Misha being close. One of Misha’s exes had pitched a fit every time Misha saw Roan because he’d thought they were fucking behind his back. He hadn’t believed Misha when he’d told him Roan really was more like a brother than a friend and that it would be like incest if they ever did anything.
Maybe this Percy guy was jealous. That didn’t bode well. Roan didn’t deserve a controlling jerk as a boyfriend.
Roan rolled his eyes. “No, Percy doesn’t have anything against you, or me spending time with you.”
“Then why wouldn’t he want to meet me?”
“It’s not that he doesn’t want to meet you. He’s just…reserved. He’s not used to being with people.”
“He’s a loner.”
“Yeah, he is.”
“Yet you managed to get through to him.”
“It wasn’t easy. And I’m sure you’ll meet him eventually.”
Roan was hiding something. He and Misha had been friends since they were kids, and Misha knew him. He could tell just by the way Roan was avoiding looking at him. He wanted to pry, but he doubted he’d get an answer out of his best friend. Still, he had to do something.
He reached out and pressed his hand against Roan’s. “You know you can talk to me, right? Even if it’s bad.”
Roan blinked. “What do you mean?”
Misha hesitated. He didn’t want to make Roan angry or to offend him, but he wanted Roan to know he was there if he needed him for anything. There was something weird going on. Misha was sure of that. He just didn’t know what it was. “If Percy is, I don’t know, hurting you, or—”
Roan snatched his hand back. His eyes were wide, and he was looking at Misha as if he didn’t know him. “What the fuck?”
Misha raised his hands. “I’m sorry.”
“You don’t even know him, Misha. How can you think he’s hurting me? It’s ridiculous.”
“It’s just…you’ve never been this cagey about your boyfriends.”
Roan leaned back in his chair and rolled his eyes. “I’m not being cagey. Percy really is a loner. He doesn’t have friends, not close ones. He also works nights, so it’s kind of hard to see him, let alone get him to come out of his apartment when he doesn’t have to.”
“We could do lunch.”
Roan grimaced. “That’s not going to be possible. He has that illness where his skin is super sensitive to the sun.”
“What?” That couldn’t be right. It sounded like a bullshit excuse, and since Misha knew Roan would never lie to him like that, it had to be his boyfriend who was feeding him bullshit.
“He can go out in the sunlight if he needs to, but he gets all red, and it hurts.”
“Roan, you can’t believe that.”
“Because it’s ridiculous.”
Roan narrowed his eyes. “You don’t know Percy, Misha, and I’d appreciate it if you didn’t judge him without even meeting him.”