Dare gets lost in music only he can hear.
Since childhood, it’s rolled through his mind, drowning out the rest of the world. When he comes back to himself he has the notes and lyrics for the songs his band plays. But he wonders if such talent is worth it, when the rest of his life is such a mess.
All Sionn ever wanted was Dare’s attention.
But that won’t happen as long as Dare has his ‘musical dreams’, so he keeps his attraction a secret. Too bad it’s impossible to keep anything secret when you live with your three best friends. When Sionn’s temper reaches breaking point, he sets Dare on a quest to ‘fix’ himself, in the hopes of gaining the love of the man he adores.
But Fate has a funny way of twisting things.
And ‘normal’ is just a state of mind, isn’t it? While Dare struggles to change, secrets are revealed, loyalties are tested, and the band is offered the chance of a lifetime. Can they pull themselves together fast enough to take advantage of it, or will Dare’s desire to be ‘normal’ unravel all their lives?
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Dare closed his eyes for a moment and shivered again, realizing that he was tired and hadn’t had a meal all day. He climbed to his feet, his guitar clutched in one hand and the other gripping the railing as he swayed. Damn, he thought as he waited for the dizziness to pass. It had to be pretty late if he was feeling this dizzy and weak. With a tired sigh he shuffled inside, tucked his guitar back into its case, and wandered into the kitchen to see that the clock read a quarter to five. Holy shit. No wonder he was starving and ready to drop; he’d been on that damned porch all fucking day. He vaguely remembered heading out there at ten, with a cup of coffee, his cigarettes, and his guitar. He checked his pocket and found the pack, happy he hadn’t burned through too many. Sometimes he smoked them all without realizing it. A waste really, or at least that’s the way he saw it. If he was smoking something, he wanted to at least remember the taste of it.
His hands shook as he poured himself a glass of milk. Then he sat at the table, drinking the milk and eating an apple. It would have to do until he could get dinner cooked. He knew the others would be home soon, and hungry. Not that they really wanted him messing with the stove. His dreams were unpredictable, and twice he’d started unintentional fires, staring off into space while the pan beside him burned. Today, though, he figured it would be fine, easy really, to cut up an onion, brown some beef, and toss soup into the pot on top of it to make a meal. He tried hard not to hum as he worked. He tried not to think of music at all. Instead, he wrote out a grocery list while the meat browned, stirring it occasionally so it didn’t burn. He forced himself to focus on what they needed and not the soft rhythm pulsing in the corner of his mind.
It helped to think of the last time he’d burned a meal and Sionn’s disgusted reaction as he’d stood with the fire extinguisher in hand, red faced, and screaming about how Dare couldn’t manage to go thirty goddamned minutes without drifting away to dreamland and how he could have burned the whole place down goddammit all to bloody hell! Dare focused on how ashamed he’d felt over the mess he’d made and how angry he’d made Sionn, and he finished cooking the meal without incident. He checked the time. They’d all be out of work by now, unless one or more had been asked to work overtime, in which case, they’d all be late, coming home in the car they shared. Dare sat at the table listening to the tick of the clock and idly drumming his fingers against the wood.
While he waited, he let the music take over. He lay his head down on the table and stared at the counter, his eyes glazing over as he entered the waking dream. He was oblivious to the roar of the Charger’s engine as it pulled up to the house, the slamming of doors, and the chatter of voices as the other members of the band came in.
About the author
LAYLA DORINE lives among the sprawling prairies of Midwestern America, in a house with more cats than people. She loves hiking, fishing, swimming, martial arts, camping out, photography, cooking, and dabbling with several artistic mediums. In addition, she loves to travel and visit museums, historic, and haunted places.
Layla got hooked on writing as a child, starting with poetry and then branching out, and she hasn’t stopped writing since. Hard times, troubled times, the lives of her characters are never easy, but then what life is? The story is in the struggle, the journey, the triumphs and the falls. She writes about artists, musicians, loners, drifters, dreamers, hippies, bikers, truckers, hunters and all the other folks that she’s met and fallen in love with over the years. Sometimes she writes urban romance and sometimes its aliens crash landing near a roadside bar. When she isn’t writing, or wandering somewhere outdoors, she can often be found curled up with a good book and a kitty on her lap.
Layla Dorine can be found at: