Hello you lovely reader human. Below you can find the full prologue from my first steamy romcom novel, Five Sunsets. If you want to read the book in full and find out what happens next, this is your link. And for more links to bonus content for my books, be sure to sign up to this newsletter list. And don't forget to follow me on Instagram or TikTok for more sneak peaks behind this book and many of my others.
Please note that the below text contains NSFW language.
Five Sunsets: Prologue
The first time I see him, he's checking out my brother's arse.
“Are your bum cheeks feeling hot?” I ask Jake, nudging my arm into his.
“Excuse me?” he asks, in longer syllables and a higher pitch than is perhaps necessary.
“There's an extremely good-looking young man eyeing you up right now, but don't turn around or he'll see. I'll tell you when it's safe.”
I glance back to find the young man is still standing in the entrance of the resort’s beach bar. He continues to look towards where we’re standing at the circular bar in the centre. However, as I look at him for the second time, I couldn't honestly say he’s studying my brother's backside anymore. In fact, did he just catch my eye and give me a lingering look too? I turn my head quickly before I can verify.
“Yeah, still not safe,” I mutter before sipping my drink.
Objectively, thanks to an unhealthy obsession with elliptical trainers, Jake does indeed have a great bum, so maybe the young man was just trying to establish who I am to my brother. As I smile to myself, knowing he will soon see, I feel a warmth spread across my back, as though I can sense exactly where he’s looking.
Or maybe that’s just the light sunburn I acquired today by spending an hour or two too long lying on the beach. I wasn’t even sure why I was there when I’m lucky enough to have my own private pool villa, a perk of my brother being the manager. It’s not that I can’t afford luxury like this, it’s more that I’m reluctant to indulge myself these days. While a spacious villa with the most incredible view is stunning, beautiful, wonderful - all the adjectives - I’m still there alone.
I thought I’d be better at being alone by now.
I push all this aside and return to the present moment, a moment that has great potential for not being lonely at all for my brother. And nobody deserves that more than Jake.
Not only is he my best friend and confidant, my brother is also the person I leaned on most when my marriage was ending. Together, we’ve been through a lot, and it’s nice to think maybe his luck is turning, even if mine is still firmly on hold. It certainly looks that way now he has his dream job managing this luxury adults-only resort on Crete’s west coast.
Iliovasílema Villas is everything he’s wanted in a job; high-end, independently owned by a local family, and in the ideal location, perched at the end of a peninsula that offers panoramic views of the blue waters where the Aegean meets the Mediterranean.
“My, my, my.” My brother pumps his straw up and down in his pink gin fizz, the ice making a satisfying slushing sound. “That is interesting. Not that I can do anything about it though.”
“Why not?” I ask before taking a nice long sip of my raspberry mojito. “It's your night off.”
“But I am the resort manager and he is still a guest.” He leans in closer. “It is a guest, isn't it? Not that having a staff member eye me up is any better. In fact, that's a lot worse.”
“It's definitely a guest.” I can easily recall how the man in question looked and how it told me he was a new arrival. There was his white cotton shirt with a very generous and confident three top buttons undone, tight jeans on long, sculpted thighs and the not yet sun-kissed pale white skin of his face crowned with dark hair that looked like it would curl if given a time to grow. He looked fresh and perhaps a little lost.
“Well, he will have to lust at me from afar.” My brother pretends to throw more long hair he doesn't have over his shoulder. “Is it safe to look now? I'm dying to have a nosey at him. We don't get many here, you know, despite the Pink Pound prices, advertising in Attitude, and rainbow fucking flags plastered all over the website.”
“You don't get many gays?” I ask, surprised.
“God, yes, we get plenty of gays. Just not the cute, young and single ones. Not the kind of twinks I could spend hours daydreaming about corrupting. I guess they don't quite have the budget yet... Oh God, I need to stop talking or thinking like this. But before I do, let my eyes just get hard for a second.”
“Your eyes can get hard?” I ask in a whisper.
He either ignores me or doesn’t hear and instead nudges me quickly. “Is it safe? Can I turn around?”
I tilt my chin to the side to check but quickly see that the young man isn't standing where he was before. Turning a little more, I still can’t place him in the small group of bodies near the entrance, so I pivot and look all the way over my shoulder. That’s when I see him sitting by himself at the table directly behind us, just a few metres away.
“Oh!” I’m a little taken aback.
It's not just his proximity. It's what he's doing.
Leaning back into the chair like it's the most comfortable place in the world, he's got a drink in his hand and his long fingers wrap around the glass like they own every inch of it. How he got a drink so quickly without coming to the bar is beyond me but there it is, and there he is. All of him. And he’s quite a sight to behold.
It's not even the planes and angles of his body I now notice filling out his shirt, nor is it the way his legs are crossed, pulling the ankles of his jeans up to reveal soft dark hair, unapologetically on show thanks to a pair of black leather Birkenstock sandals identical to mine. It’s his face, which I hadn’t fully absorbed previously. With its square jaw, deep-set dark eyes framed by dominant cheekbones and a long nose with a noticeable bump in it, it’s the sort of face that is both arrestingly handsome and intriguingly different looking. It’s his face and what he’s doing. Because he's staring at me. And smiling. Smiling so broadly I can see an countless white teeth and a matching set of dimples slap bang in the middle of each cheek. I blink at him once, twice, giving myself, him, and the universe time to get this picture back into focus. To get his eyes off me and back onto my brother's arse.
But he doesn't. He keeps on looking at me and smiling.
And I think my eyes go hard.
I can't stop the giggle that escapes me, nor the hand that rises to try and catch it, and this makes the young man chuckle too. I move my hand and pin my index finger to my chest. Me?
He stops laughing but keeps smiling.
I point at my brother. Or him?
He shakes his head then, looking down for a moment. His eyes all but squeeze shut as his smile broadens, opening up his whole face, a face that I am instantly persuaded was created to smile. Then he looks back up and very firmly points his finger at me.
“Oh,” I say again, but it's barely more than an exhale.
I am looking long enough to make Jake turn.
“Wow.” He turns to look at him, and then whips around so swiftly that it snaps me into doing the same. “That is no twink.”
“He’s not?” I ask. Although I know it myself now, I play dumb. I need Jake to speak so I can figure out why I am currently rubbing my thighs together and doing Kegels at high speed. “But he's young and pretty and...”
“And masculine as hell,” Jake adds. “Mark my words. That man is a cocky top.”
“You always tell me that there are femme and soft tops,” I say, trying to get my brother to talk more so I can feel less. Less heat in my body. Less curiosity in my head. Less anticipation in every cell of my being.
“True, but there is very little that’s feminine or soft about that man.” Jake says with a dramatic backwards nod before he sucks on his straw again.
“Isn’t it strange how much information we can get from someone just from a few looks,” I say, genuinely fascinated by it. I make a mental note to research this later.
“Not to mention the bucketload of testosterone flooding out of his youthful pores,” Jake continues.
“How old do you suppose he is?” I ask, but I know the answer already. It’s young.
But Jake’s not listening to me, he’s on a roll. “And that posture... far too confident and laid back. And did you see how big his hands are? You remember that article you sent me with comparative analysis of digit length and penis size? Did you see how long his thumbs were?”
“You noticed that?”
“Yes, I’m surprised you didn’t,” Jake replies. “Honestly, look at his thumbs. They’re almost obscene.”
“I'm not looking again...”
“Hmm. That’s because he was looking at you, wasn't he?” Jake says in a slower, more deliberate voice. “That's the other reason he's no twink. Because he's not gay.”
I don't speak and it’s not only because I don’t really know what to say. It’s also because of the smile that refuses to disappear. My cheeks are pushed up so high I feel them brush against my eyelashes.
“I swear he was looking at your arse first,” I mumble in something of an apology before adding. “Besides, he’s too young for either of us.”
“Oh, he’s young, for sure. But he's more than legal. And you...”
“You are not the manager of this luxury resort. You are on holiday. And you're single.”
“I'm divorced,” I correct him.
“Which is French for single, n'est-ce pas?”
“It's actually French for undesirable, Italian for soiled goods, and Spanish for don't-touch-me-with-a-bargepole.”
“I'm not sure they have barges in Spain,” my brother ponders, doing that ice-shucking thing again. “But you don’t really mean that, do you? I thought you were feeling positive about it all. I thought you were ready for your Eat Pray Love moment. This could be it!”
“Oh, I’m always ready for an Italian to lick gelato out of my navel,” I sigh.
“I’m pretty sure that didn’t happen in the book,” Jake frowns at me.
“Must have been the porno version,” I shrug.
“Eat, Gay, Cum?” he suggests with a wicked smirk.
“Nice. But I think it was Eat, Peg, Lick I watched.”
“Ha!” He laughs with me.
“Anyway, the point is I do feel mostly positive about my divorce. We both know it was the right thing. But that doesn’t negate the fact that a man who looks like that, is not going to look at a woman like this.” I point to my chest again.
“Jenna Louise Forester, as a gay man and your brother I am both sorely unqualified and much too biased to tell you that you are a smoking hot snack.”
I smile at him but quickly turn it into a smug pout. “Oh, I know. I have a shelf of an ass you could eat off, thighs that could keep any man’s ears warm in the coldest winter, and of course, there are these delectably plump fuck-me-lips…”
“Too much, dear sister, too much,” Jake covers his ears.
“However, I also know that young men don’t always appreciate such things. And it's probably a good thing. I mean, I’m old enough to be his...”
“Don't say it!” Jake quickly glances back over his shoulder. “Not until we have at least verified his year of birth, or that of his mother.”
Before I realise what’s happening, Jake is gone. He’s waltzing off to the young man, his hand outstretched and his smooth voice carrying over the hum of the music and the growing number guests in the bar. “Good evening, I’m Jake Forester, the resort manager.”
Mouth hanging open, I watch as my brother walks straight for the man, who interestingly, does indeed have very long and curved thumbs.
Frances M. Thompson
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