by Megan Erickson & Santino Hassell
Date Released: February 13, 2017
About Hard Wired
My FallenCon agenda is simple: sit on a couple of panels and let people meet the real me. Jesse Garvy—mod of a famous Twitch channel and, if I ever come out of my shell, future vlogger. I definitely didn’t plan to sleep with a moody tattooed fan-artist, but he’s gorgeous and can’t keep his hands off me. There's a first time for everything, and my first time with a guy turns out to be the hottest experience of my life.
But the next day, I find out my moody fan-artist is Ian Larsen AKA Cherry—someone I've known online for years. And he'd known exactly who I was while shoving me up against that wall. Before I figure out whether to be pissed or flattered, the con ends.
Now we're back online, and he's acting like nothing happened. But despite the distance between us, and the way he clings to the safety of his online persona, we made a real connection that night. I don't plan to let him forget.
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An Excerpt from Hard Wired
“Finish your other drink. I want to show you something.”
Jesse did as commanded, tilting his head back and wincing, but he swallowed it in one gulp. I leaned in closer, pressing my body to his broader more muscular one, and tangled my fingers with his. He was so warm, and he smelled so good that I wanted to keep him close.
He dropped the glass to the table with a comical grimace. Jesse wasn’t much of a drinker, but he was still sharp. Even so, I leaned in and whispered, “Are you sober?”
“Does slightly tipsy count as sober?”
“In my world, yes. But… are you sober enough to make a decision you won’t regret about someone you know nothing about?”
Jesse sucked in another breath. I leaned back far enough to search his face and found parted lips still damp from the drink and dilating eyes. On a whim, I darted out my tongue to taste the gin and tonic on his lips. It tasted better.
“I won’t regret anything I decide,” he croaked.
My smile was slightly feral, but I couldn’t check my eagerness. This was happening. It was going to happen, anyway. And my heart was in my throat because I’d waited…dreamed…for years for this, and finally the moment was mine.
We speed-walked out of the party like a couple of over-excited kids, my hand sweaty as it gripped his. He didn’t pull away as our fingers twined together. I looked at him once to see he couldn’t take his eyes off me.
Fuck. I couldn’t believe this was happening.
FallenCon had completely taken over the convention center. There were cosplayers everywhere, people with badges, and drunk folks spilling out from the party. The entire place seemed like a party, and this was usually the moment that I loved the most. When everyone dropped their insecurities and their rivalries and online dramas, and we all had fun. Lost ourselves in a moment that would forever remain in our minds as the one time we truly enjoyed being out with others.
But my brain was a mantra of fuck other people, must have Jesse. I dragged him down a hallway, opened the first conference room door I saw, and was relieved to find the lights dimmed and no one inside.
I had him up against the wall before he could ask the question. Those explosive blue eyes widened, but he didn’t shy away. And he didn’t hold up his hands in typical over-the-top adorkable Garvy fashion, a please wait sign, when I plastered myself against him. His body was harder than I’d imagined, the bumps and ridges of muscle causing my pulse to race faster.
“I hope you don’t regret this tomorrow,” I murmured.
He shook his head. “Never.”
I wasn’t so sure, but I drew him in for a kiss. That first taste had been nothing compared to his mouth slanting open for me, immediately inviting my tongue. I gave it to him with sweeping glides, fucking his mouth with it, and drinking every delightful little sound he made.
It was Jesse’s first time kissing a guy, and I knew I should be making it sweet or gentle. Probationary, even. But I couldn’t. I ravaged him until we were clutching each other in the kind of raw make-out that belonged in the back of a pickup truck after a night of drunken tailgating, not in this haven for gamers and nerds.
We were grinding on each other, and I was too dazed to know when it had happened. All I knew was that the heaviness pressing against my own erection was causing my knees to weaken.
My moans filled every corner of the room, but I didn’t care if I seemed desperate or slutty. That he didn’t understand why a kiss was causing me to tremble with need. He couldn’t know that I’d imagined this so often, that I’d drawn it, that I’d wished for it. And he couldn’t have known that sliding his hand into my hair and holding me harder against him would unleash the part of me that wanted nothing more than to drop to my knees.
About the Cyberlove series
Strong Signal (book one)
That was when I met him: Kai Bannon, a fellow gamer with a famous stream channel.
I never expected to become fixated on someone who'd initially been a rival. And I'd never expected someone who oozed charm to notice me—a guy known for his brutal honesty and scowl. I hadn't planned for our online friendship to turn into something that kept me up at night—hours of chatting evolving into filthy webcam sessions.
But it did. And now I can't stop thinking about him. In my mind, our real life meeting is perfect. We kiss, we fall into bed, and it's love at first sight.
Except, like most things in my life, it doesn't go as planned.
After a decade of serving in the Army, everyone still expects me to be Dominic 'Nicky' Costigan—the skirt-chasing player. They don't know I've been spending my days trying to figure out my post-military life. Including how to pick up guys.
When I meet Luke on a hookup app, he makes it clear it's for one-night only. That's fine with me, because I'm down to see what this silver fox can do. But after I arrive at his doorstep, it doesn't take long to realize we have serious chemistry, and we end up meeting again.
He's got more walls around his heart than a military base, but I think he's as addicted to me as I am to him. He can't resist me for long. I mean, who can? Except Luke's rules exist for a reason, and when I test his limits, things get complicated. Maybe too complicated.
Strong Signal Purchase Links
Fast Connection Purchase Links
About Megan Erickson & Santino Hassell
She lives in Pennsylvania with her very own nerdy husband and two kids. Although rather fun-sized, she’s been told she has a full-sized personality. When Megan isn’t writing, she’s either lounging with her two cats named after John Hughes characters or… thinking about writing.
Connect with Megan
Books by Megan Erickson
Trust the Focus
Focus on Me
Out of Frame
Make it Count
Make it Right
Make it Last
Mechanics of Love
Changing His Game
Playing for Her Heart
Tied to Trouble
Leveling the Field
Cyberlove (co-written with Santino Hassell)
Santino writes queer romance that is heavily influenced by the gritty, urban landscape of New York City, his belief that human relationships are complex and flawed, and his own life experiences.
Connect with Santino
Books by Santino Hassell
First and First
Insight (coming in March 2017)
Cyberlove (co-written with Megan Erickson)
Lead Me Into Darkness
Follow Me Into Darkness
In the Company of Shadows (co-written with Ais)
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