GENRE: Gay Historical Erotic Romance
LENGTH: 69,950 words
The Great North, Quebec, 1934. Joe Vega, the Beast, has been locked up in Linhart Prison for three years. The brutish guards harass him because of his size, but Joe remains cool.
Until Christophe Dubois, the disowned son of an affluent politician, is led into Joe's cell. From the moment Joe sees him, he suspects the ginger-head is trouble. Christophe is bold, curious, and feisty, and Joe can't resist the temptation of climbing into the man's bunk for long. However, the beautiful spoiled Christophe is a furnace to which both guards and convicts want to warm their hands, and Joe must fight to keep Christophe safe.
Linhart Prison may be a cruel place, but when the two men are released from its walls, they find an even tougher world out there.
Is the flame burning between Joe and Chris enough to keep them together?
Note: may contain sexually explicit scenes of a homoerotic nature.
Inside his cell, Joe paced the space between the two walls. Why was he letting himself get this way? Control. Discipline. Self-preservation. Those were his rules. He couldn't help Dubois. Dubois was here, in the Icebox, same as he was. The boy had gotten himself here. He'd made his choices. Dubois couldn't be innocent the way he claimed. It didn't work that way.
But if they hurt him. If they touched a hair on his head, he'd --
What was wrong with him?
Dazed, Joe sat down. Stared at the bars. Waited.
An hour later, when he heard the key turning, he flipped to his back, blinking at the light streaming through the bars. The key turned again and the light was gone. It was almost pitch black.
Joe wanted to ask Dubois what they'd done to him. Where they'd taken him. But he couldn't speak.
"Joe, are you awake?" Dubois's voice was very calm, coming from his bunk. He was lying down, facing Joe, but Joe couldn't make out his face.
Was he bleeding?
"Are you all right?" Joe finally managed to ask.
Dubois yawned. "I'm doing quite fine, for a cocksucker."
"Would you gimme a break with that?"
Dubois didn't say anything, but Joe sensed he was smiling in the dark.
"Well,'' Joe said, annoyed, ''come on, spit it out, what happened to you? Where'd they take you?"
"To meet the warden."
He'd spent the last hour thinking Dubois was being put through the most vicious acts a man could be subjected to, and Dubois had been in Cooke's heated office?
"I'm going to be working in the kitchen, as of tomorrow. Warden Cooke says it's a fairly easy job, and one that allows me to stay warm."
"Ain't that sweet."
"Well, I offered, noinsisted, I should be allowed to chop trees, or whatever it is you do out there, but he wouldn't have it. He said Victor Vascalispecifically asked I be given this job."
Joe was angry again. "And when is Vascali coming to get you out?"
"Very soon." But Dubois didn't sound too convinced. "In the meantime --"
"In the meantime, you're one of us. Kitchen work or not. You're an inmate, same as us. The Icebox has got you now, and nobody, not even your rich pervert friend can change that."
"Well, I guess we'll have to see about that." Dubois jerked his blanket over himself and the bunk creaked as he flipped to his side. "Good night."
He threw the two words into the darkness like poisoned darts.
One thing bothered Joe. "Why would you offer to cut down trees? Warden Cooke could have said yes. He could have sent you out there."
"Well? Why? To prove to the others you're a real man?"
"No." Dubois hesitated. "Because I wanted to be with you, Joe."
Joe curled his fingers around the blanket, shutting his eyes. His heart filled with joy.
"Good night, Joe."
''Good night, Dubois,'' Joe whispered, his body reacting to Dubois's soft words in a way he couldn't control.