Fear can be a potent aphrodisiac.
~ Kele Moon
The distinct smell of leather has many traits. It can evoke memories of the best moments in life. Scent is a well-known trigger for memory. Leather can also be soft, yet exciting. Enticing. The richness of its scent can tease the senses, drawing out primitive reactions. The smell is alluring, beguiling. The strength of leather, the comfort it offers by its proximity to the body, can be reassuring, even while shivers erupt along the skin as it wraps around a wrist, ankle, or neck. Need floods the body as thick cuffs are secured, triggering that sense of helplessness and immobility. Leather can excite… being so natural, and again, so very sensual. Warm.
The scent of leather falls somewhere between masculine and feminine tones. Leather is one of the earliest notes in perfumery, rooted in the tradition of Gantiers Parfumeurs, a guild of Parisian glove makers who made leather gloves for the aristocracy. Scents like oils, musk, ambergris, and civet were used to mask the nauseating smell of dead animal skin. This re-odorized scent is actually what today describes our notion of the smell of leather.
~Photo courtesy of Gregory Anton http://rav-photography.com
Many thanks to the model, Ben. J
Release date: January 3rd
Cover Artist: Paul Richmond
To celebrate his decision to take the next step with his boyfriend Ian, Toshi Baylor plans a romantic evening at their favorite steak house. Toshi starts the special weekend with a bang by surprising Ian at home with lunch. There’s a bang all right, but it’s between Ian and another guy.
Jase Taylor’s auto repair shop and the BDSM club, Wrapped Up, keep him busy while he waits for Mr. Right, instead of Mr. Right Now. He’s a Dom, but playing with the club’s submissives isn’t providing the usual stress release. After a day from hell, he deserves a good meal at his favorite steak house.
Toshi and Jase find a mix-up with their reservations: a table for Baylor, not Taylor. When Toshi invites Jase to dine with him, they discover a mutual affection for leather and a shared belief that trust must be earned.
Before they can explore their common interests, Toshi suffers a series of attacks by vandals. Jase’s protective instincts kick in, but both wonder if it can lead to anything permanent.
What a day from hell it’d been.
Toshi glanced through his windshield. Storm clouds, thick with rain, rolled across the heavens, rapidly blocking out the sun in their bid for ownership of the skies. Strong winds battered the car, shrieking viciously as they slammed against the small vehicle. Lightning streaked across the sky. The bolt jumped from cloud to cloud as trees swayed, limbs reaching out in morbid submission to the howling winds.
And it looked like hell wasn’t quite through slinging shit, either.
Boy, the weatherman sure missed the mark for today. A small chance of rain had turned into “going to rain its ass off” at any moment. That was the joy of living in the South—if you didn’t like the weather, just wait a moment and it would change.
“Hold off just a little while longer, just a few minutes longer. Please. I just had my car detailed.”
Toshi exited the interstate, heading toward the less populated area of the city where he lived. As city gave away to country, Toshi checked the skies again. When this hit, it was going to be nasty. Which was fitting—nasty weather for a nasty day. He loved spring, but he didn’t love this kind of weather. Frankly, he was ready for some warmer temperatures—and it was only the middle of March. Guess the kids were lucky Spring Break was last week.
Toshi stopped at his mailbox. He stepped out of his small car and grabbed whatever was inside, not bothering to look. The first splatter of raindrops hit him. He jumped back in his car and slammed the door before the wind could tear it off and hurl it away. Toshi pressed on the gas and hurried down the long drive to his house. The garage door creaked its way up, each passing second bringing the threat of rain closer. Just as he pulled in, the skies opened up and the rain came down with a vengeance.
“Ha! And with seconds to spare.” Toshi turned the car off and gathered his stuff. At least he’d managed to avoid getting his car wet. It was a small victory, but after the day he’d had, he’d take what he could get. Toshi let himself in, mail in hand.
“Junk mail, junk mail, bills… and—oh joy—more bills.”
Toshi threw the stack of mail on the kitchen table, along with his briefcase, and loosened his tie. I’m so glad this day’s over. First, he’d had to rush since he’d overslept—meaning he’d only had one cup of coffee before he left the house, which was never a good thing.
The next crisis involved tracking down his keys, then hurrying to work, only to end up behind someone going ten miles under the speed limit. He arrived at the high school parking lot, parked, and clocked in. He’d hurried to his hall, and the first thing he heard was the wave of noise coming from a classroom… his classroom, as it turned out.
Another teacher was standing in the hall, trying to watch his class and hers until he arrived. The temptation to turn around and walk right back out of the building was great. He was only thirty minutes late, but his students were already climbing the walls. After calming the kids down, he started them on their assigned reading and finally managed to sit—only to knock his coffee over some papers he had yet to grade.
That was all before nine in the morning. The day could only get better. Or so he’d thought until another teacher reminded him they had an after-school meeting. He wanted to scream. The meeting, of course, lasted much longer than needed.
Now he was standing in his kitchen trying to figure out what to cook for dinner. Nothing looked good, and he was tired, dammit. Gods, would this day never end?
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