QSFer Lyn Gala has a new MM urban fantasy book out:
Angel Zamora has always looked out for numero uno, even after getting sent to prison for robbing a convenience store at knife point. But now two crazy feds show up to tell him he has undeveloped magic. And they want him to inform on a group that has been recruiting and disposing of magic users. When Angel agrees, he expects to play the feds until he can make his own escape plans.
However, once he’s inside the mafia and developing his Talent, he starts to realize that he’s not as concerned about his own skin as he is young Matteo. The only son of the mob boss Mr. Luschese, Matt is even more trapped than Angel. His hot temper, disdain for authority, and deeply in-the-closet attitudes are all so familiar that Angel aches for the young man. A relationship that starts with Angel seeking one more potential advantage quickly turns into Angel’s worst nightmare–a deep sense of commitment to another human being. Escape routes are closing, and Angel fears he is going to end up one more body dumped in the river…and if Angel plays this wrong, Matt could die with him.
Angel gritted his teeth and pressed the bar higher into the air, his muscles trembling as he tried for one more rep. When he straightened out his elbows, he wanted to go again—to push his body harder. However, common sense kicked in, and Angel set the weight on the bar catchers and sat up.
Angel had known someone was watching, but he’d grown used to the feeling. However, in prison, men didn’t go around complimenting each other. Clearly the rules were different here. Angel faced this new guy. He was young, Angel’s age or a little younger maybe, and he lacked the hard edges of all the people Angel had met yesterday.
“Matt.” The guy offered his hand, and Angel shook it.
“Angel.” As long as Angel was stuck between the Luschesce family and the FBI, he planned to be polite as fuck to everyone. His mother would be proud.
“I haven’t seen you around.” Matt sat on the next weight bench over. He wore a gray T-shirt and sweats, so maybe Angel had interrupted his regular time. But if that was the case, the gym was large enough for both of them.
“I haven’t been around.” Angel grabbed his towel and wiped the back of his neck.
Matt grinned. “That would be why I haven’t seen you.” The easy banter and shy smile were a killer combination. Angel could feel his cock start to twitch with anticipation, but this wasn’t a gay bar, and Angel couldn’t afford to make mistakes in Luschesce’s house.
Angel kept his voice distant and uninterested. “Yeah, I guess it would.”
Matt’s smile wavered. God, this kid put all his feelings out front and center. And maybe it was unfair to think of him as a kid, but Angel couldn’t remember a time when he didn’t guard his feelings better than this. When Matt spoke again, his tone was more reserved. “So, are you working here now?”
Working. That might be true in the widest definition of the word. “Sort of.”
“Sort of?” Matt leaned forward, resting his elbows on his knees. “That seems a little vague.”
“Call it an internship,” Angel suggested. Unpaid labor in return for learning to control his Talent—again, that fit the general definition of the word as long as Angel ignored the threat of imminent death.
“Okay, now I’m intrigued.”
Whoever Matt was, he wasn’t part of the criminal world Luschesce had created. That meant he had earned his right to be in the house some other way, and the options were pretty limited. He could be someone’s piece of ass. He had the looks. Dark hair, dark eyes, a faint shadow of a beard from not shaving close enough, and a killer body—he could earn his money on his back. Only, most whores Angel knew had a more cynical outlook by the time they hit twenty or so. The other option was that Matt was related to someone here or kept here because he was related to someone Luschesce wanted to control. No matter which was true, Angel couldn’t afford to fuck this fine piece of ass.
“Don’t be. It’s none of your business.” Angel grabbed his towel and headed over toward the leg press.
“No problem. I can take a hint,” Matt called after him. The hurt in Matt’s voice slipped under Angel’s defenses, and for one shining moment, Angel felt guilty. Matt hadn’t done anything to deserve Angel’s bad attitude. Angel buried his guilt under sweat as he did a punishing set of leg presses.