R-m/m Excerpt: The Sweet Flag by Jeanne Barrack

The Sweet Flag was released on May 20th, from Loose Id It is an m/m historical paranormal romance.
Here's the blurb: Brandon Keats is a paranormal investigator, specializing in Civil War phenomena. As a gay man, he's searched for years for evidence of gay paranormal activity. When he finally finds what he believes to be an example of this, he decides to confront the ghost of a homosexual Civil War soldier at the grave where he's been sighted.
Ron Tayvail has guarded the grave of Matthew Hardesty for years. When he learns of Brandon's interest in the legend of "The Vigilant Soldier", he's determined to dissuade him from any deeper investigation. He didn't realize that he'd fall in love with the fellow on first sight. And yearn to become his lover. For always.
SET UP: The mysterious Frenchman, Ron Tayvail, has agreed to tell Brandon how Matthew and deMonde met, but only if Brandon agrees to be Ron's lover for a week.
“DeMonde and Hardesty met at a private party --”
“I knew it!”
He pinched my thigh. “Tais-toi, who is telling this? To continue, they met at a private party where deMonde was performing. It was for a select group of people from the bourgeoisie, invited back for a more intimate gathering after a sumptuous debut for the eldest daughter of a prosperous businessman who had delusions of grandeur.”
“I thought only upper class and nobility had debuts for their daugh -- Shit! That hurt.”
“I told you, the man had delusions of grandeur. Besides, he was fishing for a husband for the girl. Along with the wealthiest, most prominent families, any unattached males between the ages of twenty and forty with money or a title -- better yet, with money and a title -- were invited back to the villa for fancy desserts, drinks, cigars, and music. The few with titles came because they owed the man money for unpaid bills and loans. The man had promised concessions to anyone who would attend the soirees. The others came to criticize everything about the event, from the food to the entertainment.
“DeMonde was to sing, offering a selection of lieder and chanson, presumably to encourage a relaxed, and perhaps romantic mood, in the guests. Unfortunately, the eldest daughter decided that deMonde was to be her quarry for the evening.” Ron took a breath. I felt him shrug. “Perhaps it was the novelty of capturing a male from a lower class and an entertainer as well. Who knows? But she followed after him until he lost her within the immaculately manicured grounds. The evening was cloudy, the grass was damp, and deMonde relied upon her lack of desire to get her shoes muddy to aid in his escape. He found his way to a charming gazebo equipped with its own miniature chandelier, the lit candles providing enough light to see that it was already occupied.
“A young man lounged carelessly on the cushioned bench, a thin cigar between his sensual lips. Smoke swirled from its tip, and the heady aroma wafted toward deMonde. DeMonde turned to go, but the young man called out to him to join him.”
I halted Ron’s story. “Hardesty.”
“Who else?” This time, he didn’t pinch me.
“The closer he came to the gazebo, the clearer the man’s feature’s became. He was so…blond, so young, perhaps five years younger than deMonde. He looked like an angel to deMonde.”
I started. To me, Ron looked like an angel. A fallen angel, true, and one with a magnificent dick. If I remembered correctly, though, angels had no sex organs.
“Are you paying attention? I thought you wanted to know how they met?”
I collected my thoughts and focused on his words. “Go on.”
He shifted until his cock was wedged in the cleft between my buttocks, nipped me on the shoulder, and growled in my ear. “If you are not attentive, I will not continue, and I will leave this bed. Comprendre?”
I nodded, the threat of his leaving finally regaining my concentration.
“To go on. Matthew offered deMonde one of the cheroots he had in his case. After brief introductions were exchanged, they fell silent, then burst simultaneously into speech, and then into sweet, shared laughter.
“Matthew said to deMonde, ‘I wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed your singing. I’ve never been much for this type of music -- my sister, Susan, calls me a barbarian -- but, when I heard your voice…’ He hesitated and deMonde encouraged him to share his thoughts.
“The American blushed, enchanting deMonde with his shyness, then took a deep breath and spoke.
“He told deMonde, ‘When I heard you sing, I thought that this was how Orpheus sounded when he tried to regain Eurydice from Hades.’
“DeMonde’s heart stopped beating, and he fell in love.”
I interrupted him again. “How can you know this much? How could you know such intimate details?”
I felt Ron’s lips form a smile against my back as he shifted to press his mouth against me. “I have deMonde’s diary…and Matthew’s.”
I pulled away from him, turning to face him. “Look me in the eye and tell me you’re not lying.”
“I am not lying.”
“Where are they? What condition are they in? How did you wind up with them? When can I read them?”
He laughed. “They are here in the house, in excellent condition, they were left in my care, and you cannot read them.”
“Why the fuck not?”
He shuttered his eyes, and his hand touched my penis and stroked it like it was his pet, like he owned it. Then his fingers gripped my cock like a vise, getting tighter and tighter. He opened his eyes, and in the darkened room, they seemed to glow. I blinked, and they were back to normal. His voice froze my blood.
“We have a deal, remember? If you were to read the diaries, what need would you have of me? You would take them and try to leave.” He ground out the next words. “And I would not let you. I would have to prevent you.” He relaxed his grip, then stroked me once more. “I don’t want to hurt you, Brandon. I swore to you I wouldn’t. Please, let me tell you their story in my own words.”
"The Sweet Flag" available at:

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K. Z. Snow said...

EXCELLENT. Can't wait to read this. (BTW, Jeanne, I know of angels who do in fact have sex organs . . . and like to use 'em!)