Join Prism Book Alliance® as Hank Edwards goes Outside the Margins today.
If you follow my writing at all, you know I have few ongoing gay romance series. Last month I posted an excerpt from my Up to Trouble crime/suspense series. This month, I’m going to post an excerpt from SWAMPED BY FEAR, the third book in my Critter Catchers paranormal/humorous/will-they-or-won’t-they series. After the craziness of their first case in “Terror By Moonlight: Critter Catchers Book One,”which involved a wolf man stalking the citizens of Parson’s Hollow, their small Pennsylvania town, Demetrius and Cody tried to keep out of spooky cases. But desperate for money to keep their business afloat, they take a new case in “Chasing the Chupacabra: Critter Catchers Book Two,” which finds them hunting down a blood-hungry beast in the woods outside of town.
In their third adventure, they travel to Florida to be with Demetrius’s parents while his mother is in the hospital. One of his parents’ neighbors learns of their animal control business and asks for a favor: remove an alligator out of a pool. They try to explain the job is a bit out of their wheelhouse, but the man offers them a nice sum of money, and so they accept the challenge, which, as is usually the case, does not go as planned. Read the excerpt below, and check out all three books in the Critter Catchers series if you like spooky stuff mixed in with humor and a will-they-or-won’t-they romance blooming between Cody and Demetrius.
Even though Demetrius Singleton and Cody Bower are polar opposites, they have been best friends since kindergarten. Cody is tall, handsome, athletic, and straight, and Demetrius is gay, average height, more attractive than handsome, with a tendency to overthink things. Tired of being stuck in dead end jobs, they open Critter Catchers, an animal control business with heart. As they adjust to their new roles as business partners as well as best friends, they find themselves involved more and more often in jobs that stray into paranormal territory, both in their small town of Parson’s Hollow, and elsewhere. Spooky, sexy, and laugh out loud funny, get to know Demetrius and Cody as they stumble across monsters — and Cody’s extensive list of pissed off ex-girlfriends — all while trying to keep their friendship intact.
Title: Swamped by Fear: Critter Catchers Book Three
Author: Hank Edwards
Publisher: Wilde City
Publication Date: 09/28/2016
Cover Artist: Adrian Nicholas
Genre: Bisexual, Gay Romance, Horror, Humor/Comedy, Paranormal, Thriller
While they are in Florida visiting Demetrius’s parents, best friends and business partners Cody and Demetrius realize their feelings for each other run deeper than just friendship. As they each struggle with emotions that promise to either detonate or deepen their relationship, Demetrius must also deal with his mother’s health issues. When a missing person’s case hits a little too close to home, the two tangle with a creature so frightening it’s scaring alligators out of the Everglades and into the swimming pools!
“Hey Mr. Gator,” Demetrius said as he dipped the end of the leaf net in the water and made some splashing sounds. “Let’s get you out of there, okay? You’ve got to hate the chlorine, don’t you? I bet it’s messing up your eyes, isn’t it?”
The alligator floated closer to the edge of the pool. Demetrius took a step back, extending his reach to keep the edge of the leaf net just above the water.
“Careful Demmy,” Cody said in a calm, gentle voice.
He knew alligators could move fast, but when the thing lunged at the leaf rake, as prepared as he thought he was, it still surprised him. The gator grabbed the leaf rake in its strong jaws and twisted as it dove beneath the water. Demetrius reacted without thinking and tightened his grip instead of releasing the rake. As the gator pulled the leaf rake under, it pulled Demetrius into the pool and under the water as well.
Fear flared inside him, hot and suffocating. He remembered to release the leaf rake and struggled up to the surface. This section of the pool was ten feet deep, so he couldn’t touch the bottom. Every moment he expected to feel the alligator’s jaws clamp down on his foot or his leg and drag him underwater for good. Demetrius swam toward the pool’s edge that seemed miles away instead of just a few feet. Cody was shouting something, but Demetrius couldn’t make it out over the sound of his own panting breath and splashing water.
Something hit him in the back of the head and Demetrius screamed, thinking it was the alligator. But then he realized it was the life ring that Cody had thrown to him. He grabbed the ring to hold himself up and looked across the length of the pool as he reached out for the concrete edge. The alligator swam right for him, its snout creating a furrow through the water. Demetrius’s heart pounded, and his breath came in short pants. He was never going to see how his mother’s surgery went. He was never going to see his parents again. He was going to die with a whole list of things he had yet to do.
Cody was shouting his name over and over again, but Demetrius could not understand what he was saying. All he heard was the blood rushing in his ears and the sound of his own breathing. The alligator lifted its nose up out of the water and started to open its jaws. It was only a few feet from him now, and coming fast like a speedboat.
Demetrius pushed off from the wall, dragging the life ring along without thinking about it. The alligator missed him and hit the edge of the pool, sending a tidal wave of water out onto the deck. It thrashed its tail in anger. Demetrius did the sidestroke, heading for the shallow end of the pool as he kept the gator in sight, his left arm hooked through the life ring.
The alligator dove under the water and a sense of panic enveloped and consumed the fear inside him. The panic built on the fear, quadrupling then octupling it until it lived within him like some kind of invasive spirit, making it difficult for him to breathe.
Something tugged on the life ring, pulling him off his course and toward the side of the pool closest to the house. At that moment he felt the swell of displaced water behind him and it pushed him even closer to the house side of the pool. The alligator had surfaced right where he had been swimming, and if he hadn’t been pulled out of the gator’s path, it would have dragged him beneath the water and drowned him.
Cody crouched on the side of the pool, Hubert right behind him, both of them pulling on the rope tied to the life ring, dragging Demetrius through the water. Both men were shouting, but Demetrius still couldn’t understand what they were saying as his heart pounded, his breath rasped in his throat, and the water sloshed around him. He touched the side of the pool and then reached up, feet kicking, stretching for the bottom but still unable to find it. How fucking deep was this pool, anyway? Then Cody had hold of his hands and lifted him out of the water and into his arms.
“I’ve got you,” Cody said, holding him tight. “I’ve got you. You’re safe.”
Demetrius’s heart pounded, and he could feel Cody’s heart beating in time. They both had been frightened by his fall into the pool.
About Hank EdwardsHank Edwards is a curious mix of practical realist and feral dreamer, with over a dozen books published. His body of work covers a host of genres from gay romance to humor, paranormal to suspense, and mystery to time travel romance.
He is also a member of the Story Orgy group (www.facebook.com/SOGroup), a clan of writers who post free gay romance reads to their blogs every Monday morning and self-publish steamy stories based on writing prompts. Find his posts atwww.hankedwardsbooks.com/hankerings.
Like his Facebook pages (www.facebook.com/hankedwardsbooks or www.facebook.com/venomvalleyseries), favorite his Amazon page (www.amazon.com/author/hankedwards), and follow him on Twitter (@hanksbooks) to become a true “Hankie.” You may also visit his website at www.hankedwardsbooks.com or send along an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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,
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