QSFer Alex Silver has a new gay/trans MM paranormal romance out: “Dan’s Hauntastic Haunts Investigates.”
When ghosts cry out, Dan and Chad heed their call.
Daniel and Chad are on the road to Hawk Lake, Maine, to investigate rumors of a haunting. With his new role in Daniel’s life, Chad feels like he has something to prove. He is determined to make the Hawk Lake haunting videos the best Hauntastic Haunts has ever aired.
Daniel gets sidetracked when he realizes that he might have gotten in over his head with his long distance apprenticeship to a genuine medium. Old insecurities rear their heads and threaten the budding relationship between Dan and Chad.
Neither member of the Hauntastic Haunts crew is ready for what they uncover when they discover the truth behind the ghost ship haunting Hawk Lake. Secrets and lies that threaten to tear apart a community that is still healing from their grief might be better left buried. Daniel and Chad have to decide which is more important, telling the stories of the living or preserving the memories of a handful of ghosts.
Get ready for a hauntastic adventure with this paranormal trans MM romance.
We crossed an iconic, green bridge into Maine in the early afternoon. A bright blue highway sign greeted us with the slogan ‘The way life should be’. From there, we spent hours driving past a whole lot of trees. Apparently, life should be dull.
At least, all the plant life boded well for our hopes of capturing scenic fall foliage in our Hauntastic Haunts videos this month. Even in early September, splotches of yellow and orange leaves, with the occasional burst of bright red, dotted the mosaic of green leaves on either side of the highway.
“Pretty, huh?” Daniel asked from the passenger seat. He was in a good mood after his doctor in Exeter removed his cast this morning.
“Yeah,” I agreed, sparing a glance over at him. He caught my eye and we exchanged smiles.
“I’m excited to check out the site” Daniel cracked his window to snap shots of passing foliage.
“The lot where the Schmidt family had their camp sounds picturesque,” I said. It was a reminder to myself that our destination ought to be worth hundreds of miles of monotonous rural highway driving. “Kevin Schmidt says he has a buddy with a camp who might take us on his boat to get some shots on the water.”
The Schmidts’ camp was an empty lot now. The family demolished the building rather than repair fire damage from an act of vandalism not long after tragedy struck. The same tragedy that resulted in the reports of a ghost ship floating in the shallows of Hawk Lake.
Rumor said Schmidt’s son wandered the far shore, a lonely ghost, perhaps luring the unwary into the depths? I shuddered at the thought. The story had a certain creep factor going for it without embellishment.
If the scenery at the lake was anything like what we were driving through, the videos for this month would lend themselves to Daniel’s penchant for stunning cinematography. I already expected the Haunted History to come out great. Hawk Lake presented an interesting story on its face.
“I still can’t believe you convinced that cranky old man to let us park Vanessa on his lot,” Daniel said. He stretched across the space between our seats, leaning on my shoulder to snap a duck-face selfie of me driving. “He wouldn’t give me the time of day when I inquired about the haunting a while back. Even though his niece was the one who called the haunting to my attention.”
I took one hand from the wheel to shove Daniel back into his seat. “Maybe because I didn’t lead with the haunting? The guy lost his son, the ghost rumors piss him off. I did my research and approached him with a way we could help him put the past where it belongs, and honor his loss.”
The basic facts were all laid out in an online archive of the local paper. Twenty years ago, on the night of their high school graduation, Marcus Schmidt threw a party at his family’s camp on the shores of Hawk Lake. Dozens of his classmates and their friends had attended.
Nothing out of the ordinary about underage drinking or wild parties. What set this celebration apart was that Schmidt gave people rides on his boat, the Arcadia. The witness reports were unanimous in that he’d been spotted drinking throughout the evening.
At ten in the evening, five teens boarded a boat. That voyage took a fatal turn. Four of the teenagers never made it to shore alive. A freak storm blew in, with the poor visibility something caused the boat to founder and all five teens ended up in the water. Only one of them, Cal Sirois, had worn a life jacket. He survived.
Over the next few days, they recovered three bodies. The fourth, that of eighteen-year-old Marcus, washed up on the far shore. Nowhere near where the local authorities familiar with the lake would have expected to find him. A woman walking her dog discovered him. And since then, the legend that he walked the lonely stretch of shore where he’d washed up had grown into local legend.
I’d already made overtures to the sole survivor, Cal, to film a key interview for the haunting portion of our Hawk Lake series. He hadn’t gotten back to me, yet, but my hopes remained high.
“Yeah?” Daniel prompted when I lost the trail of conversation thinking about all the interviews I’d need to line up with the multiple ghosts involved at Hawk Lake.
“Sure,” I confirmed. “Our show will document what happened. Tell Marcus Schmidt’s story. Either we’ll show the world that there is no haunting. Or else, if we find evidence of lingering ghosts, we can help the victims of the tragedy find peace. It’s a win-win.”
Alex Silver grew up mostly in Northern Maine and is currently living in Canada with a spouse, two kids, and three birds. Alex is a trans guy who started writing fiction as a child and never stopped.