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All Derek Huntzberger knows is business. He loves his kids, Delilah and Blake to death but that doesn’t necessarily mean he knows how to be the best father. Since the death of his wife five years ago he’s buried himself in his work, only making time for his children but never daring to have his own fun. When his children’s much loved and needed nanny backs out of their Caribbean vacation, Derek’s desperate for a replacement. When Noah shows up at the port, he’s more than a little sceptical.
Noah Parks is in need of cash which means working all summer break is a given. It might not be so bad after all when he’s set up with a nannying job on a cruise ship vacation. With plenty of fun in the sun, island excursions and poolside relaxing, looking after adorable Delilah and Blake is almost too easy. It just so happens that the only hard part of Noah’s new job is with his gorgeous workaholic boss and the unexpected pull he feels towards him.
Stuck on a cruise ship, it’s not so easy to hide from your feelings. When cabin fever gets the better of Derek, it’s downtime that he needs and Noah’s all too willing to show him a good time. But fitting into the life of someone as busy as Derek isn’t easy. With Blake and Delilah coming first and business second, Noah knows he doesn’t have a place in Derek’s life. Or does he?
Manny Overboard is a light-hearted first time gay romance novel featuring adorable kids, holiday romance and a satisfying HEA.
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Noah looked up from the newspaper where he’d been reading the want ads as his roommate Tyler stumbled out of his bedroom, rubbing his eyes. He passed by Noah with barely a glance and filled up a glass of water, only to chug it down and refill it.
“Rough night?” Noah asked with a half-grin. The paper-thin walls of the small two-bedroom apartment barely muffled any sounds, and Noah could remember waking up to look at the time on his phone when he’d heard Tyler come in at four o’clock in the morning. The ensuing slurred but heated argument with the front door lock left no doubt that he’d enjoyed his Friday night out at the bars.
Noah had wanted to go with him, but he was trying to stretch every dollar, and drinking just wasn’t in the budget. Judging from the lack of job postings, drinking might not ever be in the budget again. When he saw the bags under Tyler’s eyes, though, Noah was instantly glad he’d stayed home. His friend was looking decidedly worse for wear.
Tyler grunted something that sounded like “Yeah.” Then with a sheepish look, “Did I wake you?”
“Only for a few minutes. I fell back asleep after you convinced the door to give your keys back…”
Tyler started to laugh, but then winced as he scrubbed a hand down his face. “God, I’m never drinking again. At least not until tomorrow. What are you doing up so early, anyway?”
Noah looked at his watch and smirked at Tyler’s definition of “early.” It was almost noon. “Want ads. I’ve already checked online, but I thought I’d look in the paper to see what else might be posted.”
Tyler perked up a little. “Try to find one that’ll let you have off to go skiing next month. Oh, and maybe Friday nights off, too.” The ski trip was all he’d been talking about for weeks, but no matter how many times Noah had said he didn’t have the money, Tyler kept nudging. As for Friday nights, well… He might as well keep dreaming.
His roommate was nothing if not persistent, though. And also very out of touch with the reality of Noah’s financial situation.
“Yeah right,” Noah grimaced. “I’ll be lucky to even find a job at this rate, much less one that’ll give me vacation time.”
Tyler shrugged. “Every other Friday, at least? Come on, man. It wouldn’t hurt to ask.”
Noah didn’t bother with a reply. The subject wasn’t worth debating—again—and Tyler had already turned his attention to his coffee and a bagel.
“Anything look promising?” Tyler nodded toward Noah’s paper in between bites.
“Not really. A lot of minimum wage stuff, but I don’t wanna work for pennies.” Noah sighed, shaking his head. “And to be honest, it would be nice to actually enjoy my summer for once, instead of having to constantly worry about money. Especially now that I’m finally twenty-one. Maybe go skiing and drinking with you and the guys, or something to get away from this heat for a while… Even if it was every other Friday.”
Tyler’s mouth was full, but he nodded emphatically.
Noah slumped against the back of his chair, sorry that he’d let Tyler get his hopes up, even briefly. There would be no skiing in Noah’s immediate future. Maybe a trip to the beach, if he was lucky. But a quick dip in the ocean was likely to be the only reprieve he’d get from the hot Miami sun this summer. “We both know that isn’t going to happen, though. And whining about it isn’t helping. But damn, it’s so frustrating sometimes.”
“Yeah, I get that,” Tyler said. “I’m sure there’s something good in there for you. You’ll find it.”
But Noah knew he didn’t get it, no matter how much he tried to sympathize. Tyler had never had to worry about money in his life, and that wasn’t likely to change. He had an internship that allowed him plenty of time off, and his parents were footing the bill for his tuition and living expenses. He’d graduate with no debt, and end up with a cushy job at his dad’s consulting firm, and even though Tyler was the last person who would rub his family’s wealth in anyone’s face, Noah couldn’t help but be a little envious sometimes of the advantages that money could buy.
Still, it’s not like any of that was Tyler’s fault, or that Noah could blame him for having a leg up in life. At least he was making the most of the opportunity. And anyway, there was no point in dwelling on things he didn’t have any control over. Noah would have to suck it up and do what he needed to do. Even if it was for minimum wage.
“I may end up waiting tables for a while until something else comes along,” he said, even though he’d sworn off serving food after one too many less-than-pleasant experiences. “And Raquel talked me into putting in an application at the agency she works for.”