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Hot Head (Head #1)
Author/Writer of Book/Novel:
1615819495 (ISBN13: 9781615819492)
Where there’s smoke, there’s fire…
Since 9/11, Brooklyn firefighter Griff Muir has wrestled with impossible feelings for his best friend and partner at Ladder 181, Dante Anastagio. Unfortunately, Dante is strictly a ladies’ man, and the FDNY isn’t exactly gay-friendly. For ten years, Griff has hidden his heart in a half-life of public heroics and private anguish.
Griff’s caution and Dante’s cockiness make them an unbeatable team. To protect his buddy, there’s nothing Griff wouldn’t do… until a nearly bankrupt Dante proposes the worst possible solution: HotHead.com, a gay porn website where uniformed hunks get down and dirty. And Dante wants them to appear there—together. Griff may have to guard his heart and live out his darkest fantasies on camera. Can he rescue the man he loves without wrecking their careers, their families, or their friendship?
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GRIFF saw the whole fight before the first punch landed.
“Faggot!” A shout from across the party.
He hated that fucking word.
In here? Not likely.
Griff reached for his Guinness and stepped closer to his crew. He was standing in the Stone Bone wearing his kilt because Dante and the other guys from the
firehouse had dragged him along. He hadn’t wanted to come out.
Normaly he bounced the Bone’s front door on Sundays, but tonight was September 11th, so he wasn’t working. Big night for a lot of bars in Brooklyn.
Every year since the Twin Towers fel, neighborhood places let firefighters drink free on this night. So the whole gang had come from Engine 333/Ladder 181 to
check out the female talent.
Griff’s best friend was sitting on the bar singing along with the jukebox, using his pint as a microphone; his crooked smile gleamed white in the neon from the liquor shelves. Dante had the kind of chiseled jaw and smooth baritone that ladies loved. At the moment, he was crooning a duet with Dean Martin:
“‘The world… stil is the same… you’l never change it…’”
This was Dante’s way of making sure none of his friends got lonely tonight—playing the dreamboat Italian card like it was Ladies’ Night. It kinda was.
“‘As sure… as the stars… shine abooove;’”
Raised on the Rat Pack by his pop, Dante was dragging a hook and lure through the party’s water for his pals—the ultimate chick-bait wingman.
“‘You’re no-body til some-body looooves…’”
Griff snuck a glance, and sure enough, a clump of frisky bedbunnies was drifting toward his best friend—hippety-hoppity, pussy on its way.
“‘You’re nooo-body til some-body cares….’”
A scuffle and another angry shout from the back near the bathrooms. “Fucking faggot!”
Not a joke. This time Griff turned to look over the heads.
A couple other guys from the firehouse were singing along with Dante. They hadn’t heard the trouble brewing, but if things got fugly, the bar would lose
money. Griff didn’t want trouble. He only bounced on the side when he was off duty, for cash, but the Bone was a great little dive—old-school Brooklyn in a
neighborhood that was getting Starbucked to hel.
At six foot five, Griff had a head and a half on, wel, pretty much everybody. Big as he was, he had been wary his whole life: cat on a rope. It was a handy
knack for a fireman saving lives and a bouncer saving his boss a fortune in repairs and fines.
He lowered his beer. Those shouted “faggots” had come from back near the pinbal machines, and it took Griff al of ten seconds scanning the sweaty,
yammering mob to spot the source.
A ripped Puerto Rican with a faux-hawk had yanked his girl behind him and was glaring at an older dude with a shaved head. Griff squinted, trying to read
the scene over the Sunday night crowd. The girl was beautiful and biracial and looked proud of her angry date.
C’mon, dipstick. Not tonight.
Griff put his pint on the bar and snuck a glance at the door. The security up front was stuck carding drunk teenagers. No way could they make it al the way
back to throw a blanket over anything that broke out. The bartender was puling beers on the wrong end of the counter, and the boozy crowd around the conflict
had other fish to finger on September 11th.
The Stone Bone was packed with city workers celebrating: EMTs and cops and firemen. The anniversary of the World Trade Center attacks always brought
the FDNY and their fans out in mobs, for better or worse. But tonight was ten years since the Towers had falen—people weren’t as somber as they had been
when the wounds were fresh.
Griff watched the two mismatched men more closely. Drug dealer? Loan shark? The bald guy wore a suit, not cheap, and he felt like Manhattan—older,
taler, but outclassed in any fight that the little hombre was bringing. Shit.
Baldy was smiling while he talked calmly to the younger guy. The Latino gripped his beer too tight, ready to butt heads, eyes threatening anyone nearby. He
wanted to go to jail for a drunk and disorderly.
Griff pushed away from the bar, squaring his brawny shoulders so he could plow through the crowd. A frizzy blonde hmmphed at him. Out of the corner of
his eye he saw Dante’s dark head turning as he broke off singing with the others.
“Hey, G! Where’s the fire?” Dante laughed.
But Griff shook his head. He only had a couple seconds to cross the room. A couple folks said his name or thumped his cannonbal shoulders as he passed,
and he nodded helo without taking his eyes off the brawl about to erupt. He could hear them now, the bald guy’s smooth accent as he tried to pacify the kid….
Polish? No, Russian.
Maybe Mr. Clean was the lady’s ex or something? A player trying to make her? A pimp? But why cal him a “faggot” anyways? Maybe he’d groped the