Since I’m in edits with Devine Destinies for book two of the When We Were Young series titled Toy Soldiers, I thought I’d share another excerpt. If you didn’t read the first one, go HERE to check it out.
Check out the second excerpt:
René sat up and crossed his legs. What Billy needed was understanding and patience. Since September, the poor guy had been shuffled around, starting at Uncle Ned’s and then landing here. He still had to go up against his brother and mother in court.
The dude packed all sorts of awesome, and he deserved what he’d been deprived of from birth. Even though Billy dug checking out chicks, he’d been adamant about not wanting to date any of them—especially Carla Morrisseau, whose dark eyes said she’d do anything to be Billy’s girlfriend.
Could he turn around and cut Billy loose again? Give him a chance to live a normal life? René flopped back on the mattress. His head sank into his fave plush pillow. This new, whatever it was going on between the two of them, was enough to give him a migraine.
There was a knock.
Weird. He should’ve seen Mom or Dad’s headlights flash in his side and back window when they’d entered the driveway. He must’ve been too busy thinking to notice.
“Enter,” he called out.
Billy poked his head inside, a totally weird move for a ballsey guy who always got up in everyone’s faces—especially René’s.
“’Sup?” he asked.
Dumb question. By Billy’s downcast gaze and rounded shoulders, René had again hurt the one person he didn’t wish to. Fuck, he was always pulling this crap on the poor guy. He musts get his act together. Then again, he’d given fair warning to Billy to run far away when he’d begun pursuing a friendship between them during the middle of September.
“C’mere.” René sat up. He patted the edge of the bed.
Billy shuffled across the sitting room to the main sleeping area, fingers in his jeans, head still slightly downcast. “I didn’t mean to…I didn’t mean to blow it.”
His gorgeous hooded eyes, the shape of almonds and a sexy long, straight nose with lips the same thick size, were as downcast as his slumped stance. His gaze begged for another chance.
“You didn’t do anything wrong,” René said quietly. “I get you’re in grade ten and—”
The old Billy flickered by the lifting of his perfectly sculpted chin. He was quite the babe. Not the drop-dead, capable of making a dude’s tongue hit the floor Keith Harlow kind of sexy. Not even close, but Billy still had some growing up to do, and he was filling out his clothes. He wasn’t the food-deprived kid anymore, having packed on a good fifteen pounds from tasting real chow, instead of scrounging for leftovers in a home run by two loser drunks who should be sitting in jail cells, not out on bail.
Billy plopped on the edge of the bed. He licked his lips. “I…I wish I could explain…” He wiped his palms on his jeans.
“You don’t gotta explain anything. You’re in grade ten.”
A scowl twisted Billy’s mouth. “Why do you always gotta say that?”
Oh man, another thing about this guy—talk about being stuck in an interrogation room under a hot spotlight for the last two months.
“Say what?” René squinted.
“Bring up how I’m two grades behind you. It doesn’t matter. ’Kay?” Billy pointed back and forth. “We gel, don’t we?”
Yes, they did. From the start, René had assumed he’d been helping Billy build a new life, but because of the guy’s never-ending questions, pushy ways, and determinedness, he’d forced René to acknowledge what he loathed most about himself. If only he could say this kind of shit aloud. Maybe typing everything out to Keith and clicking the mouse button to hit send had gotten too easy.
“We gel…” René tangled his fingers with Billy’s. They were smooth hands. Only the palms a bit chafed from holding charcoal pencils to sketch.
A smile wiped away Billy’s downturned lower lip. He stretched across René’s lap, staring up at him with the familiar look of hearts pretty much beating in his eyes. He’d once insisted René held a lot of power over people. Did he? His fingers skimmed Billy’s loose mop of waves, banging sweeping to the side and thick curls touching his shoulders.
If not for Keith, maybe more could happen between them. But this was simply dating. Billy still had a shitload of living to do, new stuff to discover about himself, Keith had said in his last email about sophomores. And René couldn’t give his heart away, not when Keith had already claimed it, whether he wanted it or not.
René traced Billy’s fine cheekbones, then explored his brows.
Billy wet his lips and sighed. “I could lay like this forever.” Almost a crackle-like echo came from his soothing declaration.
A pipe dream. Eventually, they’d go their separate ways. René kept running his fingers through Billy’s fluff of curls who gazed back. He may have once been a drug-dealing, lying, thieving punk, but he wasn’t like his former buddies. The vulnerability reflecting in Billy’s eyes said as much.
Deep down, they were both outcasts who didn’t fit into the puzzle at school. But that was changing. The sophomore class was accepting Billy. He stood a chance.
Yep, this former punk deserved the ultimate respect. Sex was a big fat no between them. He was in grade ten and should move at the same pace everyone in the sophomore class did.
“We can try…” Billy ran his finger along René’s chest.
Not a chance. René would cherish their time together before he said goodbye when he turned eighteen next December. By then it’d be considered illegal for him to be seeing someone under the age of majority, Keith had said.
For now, René was still sixteen. They made a great team. They were learning lots about themselves through their friendship. Hopefully whatever expectations Billy had were realistic instead of a fantasy, but knowing Billy, he’d want the fantasy.