Farewell from the Bookshelf!

Please note that GLBT Bookshelf -- the community wiki which was the parent to this fiction blog -- went offline on May 31, 2016, after seven years' service to members.

All Gay Romance will remain online till the end of 2016 in order to give contributors every opportunity to recover materials uploaded here.

Many thanks to all who contributed over the years, and good luck to everyone in your future works!


The Bright Side: A free read by Dakota Flint

“Hey Mark! Wait up!” I turned to find Mel dodging between cars in his bid to catch up with me as I walked toward the front door of Chesnut Ridge High School, where I taught history to juniors and seniors. Still as skinny as a stretched out Gumby doll, with wild auburn curls flopping into eyes magnified by coke bottle glasses, Melvin Stillwater hadn’t changed much since the day we became best friends over matching Power Ranger lunch boxes in third grade.

Well, he was a bit taller, but twenty years would do that to you.

“Hey Mel.” I checked the time. “You almost broke your ten year record, buddy. Another minute and you’d be late.”

“Friggatrisk-dude!” Mel was staring at Hilda Cunningham’s pastel yellow 1972 Volkswagen Bug.

“Bless you. And I agree, it’s ghastly looking, but don’t let Hilda hear you say that.” Cunningham was one of the few teachers who were still left from my student days here at CRHS, and I’m man enough to admit she still scares the crap out of me.

“No. I didn’t sneeze. Friggatriskaidekaphobia. That’s why I was almost late. And did you see that?” Mel was talking a mile a minute, which meant I’d soon have no chance of keeping up with him. I’d long ago given up hope of ever following Mel’s jackrabbit thoughts. Probably why we were still friends. I just followed him down the rabbit hole, and hoped to be entertained.

“Frigga-what? And all I saw was you staring at Hilda’s attempt at youth, about thirty years too late I might add.” Glancing around, I made sure Cunningham wasn’t…lurking somewhere. I’d be eating my words for the next twenty years if she heard. Maybe even the next thirty years. That’s one lady who’s never going to die, let alone retire.

“Friggatriskaidekaphobia. Fear of Friday the Thirteenth. I debated not showing up today, which added six minutes onto my morning routine. And that was a black cat.” Mel looked furtively around the bushes lining the front of the high school, as if he expected the cat to jump up and attack us. I barely refrained from rolling my eyes.

“Mel, you do this every time Friday falls on the thirteenth of the month. When’s the last time something bad actually happened to you on this day?” We walked through the front doors, and I lowered my voice to my “indoor voice” that Miss Fletcher, the Vice Principle, was always blathering on and on about.

“Mark, man. It’s only because I take the necessary precautions. And I’ve never seen a black cat before on a Friday the thirteenth. What was it doing in the parking lot of a school?”

“I didn’t even see it. You sure you saw one?” Half of my mind was already going over today’s European history lesson.

“Positive. It was sitting right next to the front tire of Hilda’s car.” Mel turned to face me, completely earnest, and all I could think…who picked out his hideous tie? One of the best guys, but his wardrobe made me shudder.

Tearing my thoughts from the wonder that was Mel’s attire, I resorted to my usual state: flippancy. “Ah, well there you go. It’s Cunningham’s familiar.” Mel gasped, but I continued blithely unaware of the impending danger. “But not to worry, I have it on good authority she only feeds poisoned cookies to intrepid high schoolers, not scatterbrained science teachers. You’re safe.”

“But you may not be, Mr. Lindley. The only poison I see here is your tongue.” Closing my eyes, I prayed for my heart to start working again. It had stopped the minute I heard the crisp tones, sharpened on the hides of students for twenty five years, of Hilda Cunningham’s voice.

I’d manage to stay on the good side, or at least the invisible side, of that woman for two years since I started here at CRHS. Why did my mouth always get me in trouble? I turned around to face her, and resisted the urge to check my body for physical damage from the force of that inimical glare.

“Mrs. Cunningham, I’m sorry. I—” There was no point in continuing the apology since the old battle-ax had turned and walked off in the middle of it.

I turned back to Mel, whose eyes had rounded in what I assumed was unmanly fright. “Melvin…couldn’t you have warned me? Of all the—”

“Luck. Exactly. It’s the day. And that cat.” I rolled my eyes again, and Mel continued, “Sorry, Mark. For a woman pushing seventy, she’s quick. And I swear, she still freezes my tongue.” Mel shuddered, and I couldn’t say as I blamed him. She left me feeling like a chastised little boy at the best of times. Having insulted her and lived to tell about it, I felt relieved even if I was sure she’d be back to finish the kill later.

“Come on, Mel. Let’s go.” Kids were starting to trickle into the school, making it look as if the hallways were waking up after a nice long nap. “Look on the bright side. Friday the thirteenth or no, after a brush with Satan, things can only look up after that.”


“It’s not that bad. Stop looking at me like I’m doomed. I mean it, Mel.” I tried to sound like I meant business, but fooling yourself was harder when you couldn’t even fool your best friend. “I mean, how bad can it be? British verb ending?”

“-Ise. Do you really need me to answer that?” Mel didn’t even have to think about that one. Impressive. I snagged his diet coke for a sip instead of walking the five feet to grab mine from the fridge in the teacher’s lounge. What can I say? I’m lazy.

“No. Heinous war crime?” Damn, the Friday ones were really hard.

“You have to talk about safe sex with fourteen and fifteen year olds. You obviously really pissed Delfino off. Or…” Mel let that hang in the air a moment, and I shot him a glare. Being called down to the office of our principal, Marty Delfino, and told I had to take over Rita Troost’s freshman Health class for the rest of the quarter because she quit during Happy Hour last night…well, it sucked. But I didn’t think it was part of some cosmic plan to screw with me because I happened to run across a black feline this morning. “Oh and…ethnic cleansing?"

“Nice. I didn’t even give you the number of letters. Would you give it a rest? It’s not bad luck from seeing that cat. I’m blaming it on decisions made by too many whiskey sours. Speech ornamentation?” I lowered my voice, probably too late, not relishing the idea of swallowing both my feet again. The aftertaste of foot just did not agree with me.

“Flosculation. Yeah, whatever. If I were you, I’d just go home and go to sleep early. Spend the rest of this day in bed.” Only Mel could say something like that and look completely innocent. And how did he know these?

“Oh, I plan to.” I couldn’t help the wicked grin that spread over my face. “But not in my own. The Doc is making me dinner tonight at his place. Now, that is definitely the bright side in this day.” My smile softened as I thought of Dr. Robert Gaffney. It had only taken one of the seven months I’d been seeing him to realize that he was it for me. Now it was just a matter of finding time to spend together, since working in an emergency room made his schedule crazy. “Mean crossword clue writer’s challenge to solvers?” No way would Mel get this.

“Hmmm. Letters?”


“Try googling this.” Son of a bitch, how did he do that? “Well at least you’re not going out. Still, I’d be careful. Tell Rob to be careful too.”

“Mel…” I let the warning leak into my voice, and then glanced back at the paper in front of me. I snorted at the next one. “Futuristic unlucky massacre?” Wouldn’t every massacre be unlucky if you were the massacred?

“Yeah, okay. Templar Brotherhood. Are you sure this is Friday’s?”

“Yeah. I love doing crosswords with you during our free period. No brain power required for me, but it makes me feel all accomplished.” I briefly wondered if tears would get me out of teaching Health. “Last period’s about to start. Want me to call you tomorrow and let you know I survived the night?”

I laughed when Mel just solemnly nodded his head yes.


“Mmmm. I’m not sure which is better, shower slicked skin or dessert flavored kisses,” Rob murmured as he nibbled on my bottom lip. We’d manage to make it through dinner and even the dessert Rob referred to before stumbling, wrapped around each other, into the shower.

“You honestly don’t know whether you prefer this,” I said as I rubbed the hard length of my prick against Rob’s hip. “To mixed berry cobbler?”

“Not if the cobbler is on your tongue, no.” Rob kissed me like he meant it, hard and a bit rough, just like I wanted him to. Rob had that five o’clock shadow thing going on, and I loved the feel of his stubble against my cheeks.

I sank my hands into his water drenched hair, an anchor in the tempest I always felt when I was with Rob. Every time I thought it couldn’t get better, it did, until he could make me hard with just a few nibbling kisses.

Rob gave me one last tongue thrusting kiss before smiling and dropping to his knees, and I tilted my head back against the wet tiles as I waited for the feel of his mouth on me. Every muscle in my body was tense, poised in anticipation, and I groaned when, after hovering close to my cock, he only leaned in and sucked on the skin between hip and thigh.

“God, Rob. You are such a tease.” He flashed a wicked grin up at me as he lightly traced a line from the base of my dick to the tip, not nearly enough pressure. “Please. Your mouth. I need your mouth, Rob.”

He continued to tease me for a few more minutes, licking and nibbling, never quite enough, until my head was thrashing from side to side and I was babbling about how good it was, how much I needed this, how much I needed him. The word “love” might have even left my mouth, but I was too gone to care. We didn’t say it much, but Rob knew how I felt.

When Rob finally took me into his mouth, it felt like my back bowed, the powerful feelings controlling me, and I scrambled to find purchase as my left foot slipped out from under me.


“Look on the bright side,” Rob said, and I groaned at the use of that expression again. “At least it wasn’t your right hand.”

I glared at Rob, and he gave me a weak smile. I tried not to sound as shitty as I felt since it really wasn’t his fault. “Can we go now? I just want to go home and pretend this day never happened.”

“As soon as they bring the discharge papers. You know, some people might think that you’re having a case of bad luck because it’s—”

I cut him off. “Now you sound like Mel. According to him, sighting a black cat this morning was responsible for me making a jackass of myself and offending Hilda Cunningham, getting saddled with teaching a bunch of pimply faced kids about the birds and the bees, and now I’m sure he’d say that damn cat is also responsible for me breaking my wrist.”


“Rob, if the grin you’re fighting actually makes it to your face, you’re sleeping alone for the next week. This was not fun.”

An understatement if there ever was one. My cheeks burned every time someone at the hospital asked me how I did it. I could see the T-shirt now: “All I got from a blow job was this lousy broken wrist.” Well, and ringing in the ears from cracking my head on the side of the tub.

“Aw, come on. I’m looking forward to going home and playing doctor.” Rob’s voice had dropped an octave to the seductive murmur that usually turned my knees weak. Too bad my knees were already weak from the pain pills. Rob leaned down and his lips brushed my ear as he said, “I know just what to prescribe, too. Let Dr. Rob take away your ache.”

I giggled, a sound I would definitely blame on the meds later, and said, “That was so corny.”

“I know. But you love me anyways.” Rob smiled, despite the serious look in his dark brown eyes.

I smiled. “Yeah. I do.”

Check out Dakota's page over at the GLBT Bookshelf!

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