Growing up with a strictly religious father in a house with little joy, or love, left Grady Stoltz eager to get out. At the first opportunity that presented itself, they left home with a young man who swept them off their feet, used their preferred pronouns, and accepted that they were gender fluid and wished to shed the name Grady and all of the constraints of their former life. Dubbed Gemini, they never expected to return to that farm or the rural community they’d been raised in, but life took some unexpected turns, and they found themselves returning four years later. A little older, a little wiser, and the new owner of a house full of memories and regrets.
Cleaning the place up is only the first step towards deciding if they wish to sell it, or if they wish to stay and try and make a life for themselves in a place they’ve never felt as if they belonged. Haunted by the memories of the father who could never accept them, the mother they lost at a young age, and their own shortcomings and failures, they are in a very dark place when Rogue arrives.
Charismatic when performing in front of an audience, yet shy and vulnerable when faced with the prospect of being alone in a crowd, Rogue seeks shelter with Gemini on their middle-of-nowhere farm, hoping for a new beginning and a chance to see if the tiny spark that had flared between them once before, can be kindled into a roaring flame.
Two battered souls, one tattered farmhouse, an old dog, a cranky chicken, several misspoken words, and one crazed ex-husband combine in an explosive combination of truth, lust, dreams, and vengeance. Will the force of it tear Gemini and Rogue apart, or will it leave them closer than they ever dared to hope?
Warning: Violent/stalker ex, dysfunctional family, homophobia, mentions of past cheating in a previous relationship (not committed by MCs), accident/injury, threatening behavior (not between MCs)
“Were you wanting a few of those birds?” a lean man in a blue shirt and overalls asked, as he stepped up to the other side of the pen.
“Yes, please,” Gemini remarked. “Four actually, a Tom and some hens.”
Picking them up, the man made quick work of sorting out the males from females, before doing a quick count of the remaining birds.
“Tell you what, I’ll throw in a forth hen for free if you’d like her. I’ve got too many hens here at the moment.”
“That would be wonderful, thank you,” Gemini replied, as Rogue glanced down at the cage he carried and back at the birds.
“I think we need a bigger cage,” he suggested.
“Least it’s not a bigger boat,” Gemini shot back, giggling.
“I’ll run back to the truck and get one,” Rogue offered.READ MORE
“Forget it, you’ll get lost in this place if we leave you to your own devices,” added George. “That or have another unfortunate encounter with a guinea fowl.”
“Nope, only one I’ve had an unfortunate encounter with today has been you.”
“Ha, ha,” remarked George, before heading back in the direction of the truck. By the time he returned, the money for the turkeys had changed hands and Gemini and Rogue found themselves the new owners of a flock of young turkeys.
“What’s wrong? You look like you just swallowed a lemon?” George asked Gemini as he set the cage down beside the pen.
“He’s named them.”
“To make it easier to call them when we want to feed them,” Rogue admitted.
The man in the overalls snickered but had the good graces to cover it up with a series of coughs, which was more than George and Gemini managed to do, as the pair howled with laughter, prompting a series of gobbles from the turkeys, who’d fled to the other side of the pen, fortunately, cordoned off from the rest of the flock.
“Dude, you don’t name the food.”
I was immediately drawn into the story of Gemini. I was intrigued by their history and although I found the pronouns a little confusing at times, I think that is because I'm not used to reading a story that uses they/them. Once I had it clear in my head, the story flowed better for me.
Gemini's life has been tough and a little sad but they are also resilient and a little hopeful.
I liked Rogue, the brother of Gemini's crappy ex husband. He's in need a TLC as much a Gemini is.
"every time we've ever touched, drunk, high, sober or whatever, there's been a spark, like a lightning bolt and you feel it too. I know you do. No promises, no regrets, no bullshit, let's just see what happens, ok? Maybe we'll break each other a little more than we already are, or maybe we put each other back together again."
I was fully immersed in their story. Wanting and willing them to get the HEA that both of these characters deserved. It's an uplifting journey of the relationship between Gemini and Rogue as they grow and thrive together. I liked watching them learn new things about themselves and each other.
A sweet, romantic story about love, acceptance, hope and friendship.