Electric Sunshine (Brooklyn Boys Book 1)

Prologue

Kev - two weeks earlier

I’d never imagined a date kissing me good night on his front step before he tucked a tip into my shirt pocket. As it turned out, New York City was full of those kinds of dates—guys who wanted the boyfriend experience, but didn’t want to worry about washing the sheets tomorrow.

Rick was another one of them, and it was strangely disappointing. I’d been all revved up to go, wondering if he’d pay extra for another couple hours. I didn’t even have another date lined up after this, just in case. But Rick had meant it when he’d asked me for time together with no strings at all.

I couldn’t stop myself from smiling as he leaned in to press his lips against mine and murmured, “Thanks for today.”

“You’re welcome,” I answered, and I meant it. I could pay the rent, and he could go to bed feeling like someone in this goddamn city heard him, and liked him, and wanted him to be happy. And I did, on all counts.

He was a good guy. If he could let go of his self-esteem issues and his need to appear young and hip, he could find a guy his own age, or even a younger one—no problem. I was sure of it. But maybe I was young and overly optimistic. A lot of guys gave me patronizing smiles when I told them those things, like I was trying to flatter them, or like I had no idea what dating was like in the real world.

Maybe both of those things were true. I was twenty-three and fresh out of Tennessee, my head still spinning at every neon sign and shop display, not fifty-three and considering early retirement and a house in the sticks to escape the city.

“Bye, Rick. Have a good night,” I said and finally stepped back with a wave, trotting down the steps of the brownstone house to head for the B train.

I spent the trip back to Brooklyn planning what I’d replace next in my wardrobe. I could use a Costco run to see what gay-approved underwear brand they had in stock so I could take new profile photos. Plus, we were nearly out of garlic, and Costco had the huge tubs. Garlic made any food palatable, even Adam’s cooking.

At least my roommate took his turns cooking and cleaning. We’d gotten those roommate negotiations out of the way pretty early on, back in Tennessee. And he dealt with my doing sex work, so I couldn’t complain.

Well, I did complain now and then when I got home to an empty, dark apartment.

Adam must be working a late shift. He split his time between jobs cleaning pools, stocking shelves, and stuffing flyers to make ends meet, and I met men for companionship. We were an odd couple of roommates, but we were happy.

That was what I told myself as I dropped onto the couch with a cheap crystal wine glass full of water. A boy needed to rehydrate his skin, after all.

For the first few minutes, the apartment was blissfully still, dark, and quiet after the hustle and bustle of Manhattan. Brooklyn was just a hop and skip away from where most of my clients lived or worked, but affordable for two country kids to split, if you squinted and tilted your head.

Our apartment had started life as a one-bedroom, but the landlord had seen a chance to hike the rent and installed a shoddy wall across the living room entrance to make it a two-bedroom apartment. Instead, we had a tiny living room where the dining room had once been.

I took the horrible bedroom, since I didn’t really give a shit, and I was a lot less clumsy. Adam would have tripped and fallen into it and knocked a hole in the drywall in the first week, guaranteed. It did mean we couldn’t have more than three friends over at once, and that was if two were willing to share the window seat, but it was cozy.

And boring when nobody was home.

“On the other hand…” I set aside my glass of water and twirled to the bedroom to grab my tweezers. I didn’t keep them in the bathroom, or God knew what Adam would have used them to do.

I had to keep my eyebrows in tiptop shape, and I wanted some new profile photos, even if I didn’t have new Diesels to take them in. I’d stop by TJ Maxx later that week, if none of the work I had lined up fell through. There was always that risk, among others.

I hummed and tilted my head this way and that, nabbing all the fine hairs. My hair was down to my chin now, but despite the waviness, it was under control. That would do just fine. I headed back to the living room and draped the fuzzy blanket across the couch. It made the perfect backdrop.

Maybe after taking some teasing shots, I’d head to my room and take care of the edge that had built up all evening in expectation. I’d watched Rick’s time ticking down and given him a heads-up when there was enough time to get back to his place and screw, but he’d just smiled and waved it off.

The sexual frustration was real.

I pulled my pants off and my shirt up, arranging my body artistically. I’d been taking lewd selfies for long enough that I knew how to do it for maximum sex appeal. When my legs were arranged just so, I ran a finger along the head of my cock until it twitched to life in my underwear to give an extra little thickness to the bulge.

“Okay, now…” I bit my lip with concentration as I turned my phone to timer mode, curled my toes around the edges, and lifted it in the air. If I propped it between my toes and my other foot, I could hold it steady enough for a photo with my hands behind my head.

Thankful for my time at the ranch before I’d moved, I crunched up effortlessly, pressed the shutter button, arranged the phone between my feet, flopped down, stretched my arms casually above my head, and then gave the camera a sultry look.

Just in time, too.

I repeated the process a few times with different poses, and then balanced the camera in the usual places—on top of the TV stand, on the top of the armchair in the corner. I needed another set of professional photos soon, but this would have to do for now.

While I had the run of the place, it was time to reward myself for my hard modeling work. If I missed having someone to talk to about my day and my dreams, nobody had to know. Busting a good nut always helped kill the blues.