On the Divide – Part 11 ~ Outside the Margins with Freddy MacKay

Join Prism Book Alliance® as Freddy MacKay goes Outside the Margins today.

Freddy MacKay OtM

Hello, welcome to the Prism Book Alliance Blog today. Freddy MacKay here, one of the contributors to Outside the Margins. For my part, I am writing 500 – 1000 word flash fiction pieces. Please forgive me, as these are not professionally edited (I do try to catch my mistakes), but I hope you enjoy.

On the Divide – Part 11 by Freddy MacKay

Curled up on his bed Cooper watched his clock tick over another minute. After his panic attack at The Jolt Malik called Alison, asking her to come in early and cover for Cooper so he could go home. Luckily she said yes.

The minute she walked through the door Cooper bolted—still shaky and nauseous. He didn’t even remember the trip back to the apartment. The idea of biking though town completely unaware of his surroundings shook Cooper hard. He could’ve gone through a red light or a stop sign and gotten squashed.

But he wasn’t squashed. Cooper was home, in his bed, his mind racing a million miles per hour. The past few months flashed in front of his eyes like pictures.

How Evelyn’s behavior became increasingly aggressive. The way his coworkers at the café laughed at her antics, despite Cooper’s protests. Because what guy didn’t like getting attention? It was harmless joking. Harmless fun. Besides he was “gay”—like that somehow gave Evelyn the right to touch him.

A shiver ran through Cooper.

The attention was unwanted and undesired. Cooper should’ve spoken up, told Mabel and Benji, but he hadn’t wanted to cause waves. Waves were big and crashed down hard on people when they weren’t looking, dragging innocent bystanders out to vast nothingness and drowning them. Cooper just wanted to work and get through the day. Watch the waves as he sat on the beach enjoying the fresh air and sunshine.

Then the whole mess at Stubby’s happened and everything changed.

Evelyn became hostile and vindictive. Cooper was put on probation at The Jolt. Harlan. Shit. Hot Harlan happened—one more person in Cooper’s life who had no concept of boundaries.

The café had become toxic grounds for Cooper. He’d been trying so hard to get by he hadn’t seen how out of control everything was. His life. The relationships he had at work. The pressure he’d been under.

All of those things contributed to the panic attack—the one still stroking his heart and tapping at his nerves.

Cooper drew in a deep breath and let it out slowly, focusing on the clock again. Five minutes had passed. Good. The time crawl had sped up, a tiny bit, but it was better than seconds feeling like hours.

Maybe in a few minutes Cooper would even feel like sitting up, having a drink of water, or even nibble on a piece of toast to settle his stomach—when he wasn’t feeling so fuzzy or out of sorts.

The world had rolled over and decided not to tell Cooper this afternoon. His head had static running through it, but not as loud as before. Plus the bed felt all wobbly beneath him. Not rocking and tipping the boat over kind of waves, but he wasn’t quite at the “okay” stage yet.

He’d get there, though. Just like the days following his break up with Tabitha, Cooper would pick up, make his way through the day, and move on with his life.

Cooper took another deep breath and let it out. This time he didn’t sound as rattled as before. Good. In a moment the world would stop tumbling over and over. In a little while Cooper might even be up for making toast. After that he might decide on a book or movie. Maybe even some homework after vegging.

Little steps. One decision at a time. Small ones to build up to the bigger ones. Not everything in Cooper’s life had to be decided today.

Nope. Just small choices to get to the next one.

Like sitting up. Which Cooper did with careful movements so as not to tip his ass off the bed. He sat with his back against the wall, looking over his sparse bedroom. His dresser was shoved up against the wall on the left, his bookcase tucked under the window, and the closet door hung slightly ajar. Cooper noticed a large pile of laundry on the floor. He really needed to get his clothes washed.

After some toast and a movie he would take his homework down to the laundry room and get shit done. Yes. Cooper could do that. He had a plan. A good one. A small reasonable one that would allow him to get through the rest of the day.

Cooper slid forward on the bed, sitting for a moment, making sure his head was clear before he stood. He had made it as far as the door before the world tilted again. Not by how he felt, but because of the voice he heard.

“Coop?” Harlan called out. “Your door is open. Everything all right? Cooper?”

He stuck his head out into the living room/kitchen area of his apartment. Harlan stood at the door threshold, just on the other side, so not in the apartment but his presence was enough to shake Cooper.

“Cooper?” Harlan wore a concerned expression on his face. “Your bike is dumped on the walk and your door is open. Do I need to call somebody?”

“No.”

“Are you sure?”
The nauseous feeling from before returned in full force. Cooper took a step back. “No.”

“I uh, you don’t look so good,” Harlan said. His voice sounded far away.

“No.”
“Cooper?”

The world went sideways and took Cooper with it.

~Freddy MacKay


TTtSE

Title: Travels Through the Scarlet Equinox
Author: Toni Griffin, J. Scott Coatsworth, Angel Martinez & Freddy MacKay
Publisher: Mischief Corner Books
Publication Date: 11/18/2015
Cover Artist: Freddy MacKay
Genre: Bisexual, Contemporary, Fantasy, Gay, Humor/Comedy, M/M Romance, Paranormal, Romance, Science Fiction, Urban Fantasy

Blurb:

and gold and the crisp air whispers of chance and change, when bright days turn into sudden storms and the veil between reality and imagination thins. Join the Mischief Corner authors as they share stories evoking this often unpredictable time of year.

A Bear’s Bear by Toni Griffin
Matthew Warner’s been a Chicago Bears fan as far back as he can remember. What other team was a young bear shifter from the Smokey Mountains supposed to root for? When his college friend gets tickets to the next home game, Matthew jumps at the chance for a holiday. It’s his favorite time of year and Nic promises him pumpkin carving and a visit to the world’s largest corn maze, what more could he want?

What Matthew doesn’t expect is finding out the defensive tackle for the Bears is his mate. Between fainting at the realization, meeting family, and dealing with the media fallout of his mate’s coming out Matthew is in for a hell of a rocky Halloween.

The Autumn Lands by J. Scott Coatsworth
Jerrith is running. Kissed by an elf, he can’t remain in his hometown of Althos anymore. Not that he wanted to stay.

Caspian still hasn’t figured out why he kissed Jerrith, but he’s running too. Since he was exiled from the Autumn Lands, his past has been hazy, and his future uncertain. But when a stray memory brings things into focus, the two decide to run toward something together. What they uncover will change how they see the world, and themselves, forever.

Beside a Black Tarn by Angel Martinez
When Shax stumbles across rumors of an experimental house that responds to the occupant’s brain functions, creating scenarios to please and delight, naturally he wants to steal it. But with the return of a troubled and hunted Julian Parallax and an overabundance of Poe references, even Shax’s scheming may not be enough to get the Brimstone crew out alive this time.

Eternity in the Tides by Freddy MacKay
Autumn has always been Zak’s favorite season for hiking and camping. Not to mention breathing in all that crisp fall air and sitting around toasty bonfires. That all changed year and a half ago when a rich prick high on prescription pills sideswiped Zak while he was out biking.

Now his days are filled with pain and limited mobility. No more camping. No more trails. Zak’s life as he knew it is gone forever.

Back at his beloved stomping grounds, Zak is ready to say hello and goodbye one last time. But when a cry from the frigid Lake Superior waters throws him into the role of a rescuer, more than just his life hangs in the balance. Little did Zak know how much one person giving a damn mattered to him.

Genres: Gay Paranormal Romance, Gay Science Fiction, Gay Fantasy, Gay/Bisexual Urban Fantasy

Excerpt

Eternity in the Tides by Freddy MacKay

Chapter One: Hello, Goodbye

Crimson, hot pink, burnt orange, and a dark purple lit the sky and splashed over the calm waters of Lake Superior. Dusk had fallen in all its beauty, gracing Zak with the perfect moment at his favorite stomping grounds. If he had to go, and well… yeah, he couldn’t ask for anything better than this. Tonight was the night. Had to be.

Water lapped at the boat, rocking it gently. A breeze wafted over Zak. He shivered, then hugged himself as he looked over the lake, back at Madeline Island. Like each night over the past few days, a pang of longing hit him. Zak had said his goodbyes, accepted the fate handed to him, knew better than to hold on to dreams he could never have. He should have been able to take the next step.

But he couldn’t.

Each night he rowed back to his rental cabin, Quiet Bequest, in defeat. What the hell he held on for, Zak didn’t have a clue. His heart thumped heavily, his palms slipped over the oars, and the hair on his arms stood up—goose bumps everywhere—as if something big were about to happen.

Well, yeah, something huge if Zak could get his head on straight. Well, maybe not straight—his plan was utter ridiculousness to the outside observer. Made sense to him, though. But then it would.

Anticipation rode Zak hard. He knew what he had to do. Planned it. Came determined. This trip, the two-week cabin retreat he could never afford, the rowboat—my accident—had been in the works for months. And now… now Zak cowered in his waterlogged rowboat.

“Fuck.”

Zak pulled the oars into the boat, gave his tackle and rod a sidelong glance, and turned. All he had to do was get out of the damn boat and into the water. Simple as that.

“Just, just do it, fucker.”

But Zak didn’t move. He clung to the edge of the boat with his good right hand, white-knuckled and sick to his stomach.

God he ached. All fucking over.

Links

Travels Through the Scarlet Equinox on Goodreads
Mischief Corner Books
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon CA
All Romance eBooks

About Freddy MacKay

I grew up and went to college in the Midwest where I currently reside with my family. I spend most of my time playing sports and running around outside. And honestly, that much has not changed since I was little, except who is included my activities. I also have a healthy geocaching addiction. It’s so much fun! I enjoy spending my time traveling when I can, and I hold the view that a person should continually to learn about new things and people whenever possible.

My contemporary LGBTQ book, Incubation: Finding Peace 2, won 3rd Place – Best Gay Erotic Fiction in the 2012 Rainbow Awards. In 2013, Internment, won 3rd Place – Best Gay Fantasy in the Rainbow Awards. Feel Me (The Marduck Expanse) was a Gay SF Finalist and Honorable Mention in the 2014 Rainbow Awards.

Email: freddy.m.mackay@gmail.com
Website: http://freddysstereograph.weebly.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/FreddyMacKay
Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/FreddyMacKay
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Farewell Giveaway
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.

Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,

Brandilyn
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