I LOVE THIS! Not only do we have Lou Sylvre with us here at Sinfully today, but also Brian and Jackie from the Vasquez Security, The Next Generation Series AND two of my most favourite characters Luki and Sonny from the Vasquez & James series… I’m in book boyfriend heaven!
There is also a giveaway, so don’t forget to enter for your chance to win any Vasquez and James book, plus a $10 Dreamspinner gift card… great giveaway, don’t miss out!
Hello, I'm Lou Sylvre, talk show host and occasional author, here today at Sinfully Addicted to All Male Romance Studios (pause for breath) with a brilliant panel of experts from the smash hit public television shows of the Vasquez and James Universe.
Seated on my left, Brian Harrison, Scotland Yard Detective Constable and former Vasquez Security employee is one of the stars of the new spinoff series Vasquez Security, The Next Generation, which has just launched with its first episode, A Shot of JB (based on the book of the same title). Also on my left, former ATF agent, owner of the nationwide upper echelon security firm, and badass extraordinaire. We've got their domestic counterparts, Sonny Vasquez-James and Jackie Vasquez with us back stage. Before we bring them out, I'm going to ask the badasses a couple of questions just to break the ice.
Host smiles at Luki.
Luki rolls eyes.
Host: "Why did you agree to appear on the show, Luki?"
Luki: "Did I? I don't think so. I'm here because a witch named Lou Sylvre once again took over my life!"
Voice from backstage: "Luki Mililani Vasquez! That's enough!"
Luki bites his lip and his eyes widen. "Okay, sweetie."
Voice from back stage: "Okay won't get it. You apologize right now."
Luki: "Sorry, Ms. Sylvre."
Voice remains silent.
Host: "Thanks, Luki. Let's move along then. Brian, question."
Luki: "Why did you agree to be on the show?"
Brian: "Oh, that. I had no say in the matter. I'm making the best of a... questionable situation."
Brian and Luki smile as they catch sight of Jackie and Sonny walk out onto the stage, both with stunning grace, and take every eye in the studio. Together the two of them are a study in contrasts.
Sonny tall and elegantly slender, long black hair caught half up in a ponytail and—to Luki's delight—wearing an immaculately tailored suit of white summer wool, his palest blue linen shirt left open at the top to reveal his fine the gleaming St. Christopher Luki had given him. There's some kind of body language that passes between them as Luki plainly lets his eyes wander slowly up Sonny's form, stopping at the eyes to give him a wink. Sonny seems to blush, but it is sometimes difficult to tell. Then, a surprise to everyone, Sonny altered his course, strode over behind Luki, and leaned down to whisper something in his ear. Luki may or may not have blushed but he seemed to become rather warm, loosening the dark blue tie at his throat and adjusting his sitting position.
Host: "Care to share, Luki, Sonny?"
Luki: "Not on your life."
Sonny laughs. "What he said."
Jackie would be described as petite when compared to any of the other three men, but he moves with a natural grace that wouldn't be possible if his muscles weren't toned. He wears tight-fitting, lightweight black pants embroidered with a bold silver filigree down the legs. His jacket is one of a kind, a very lightweight leather that he has decorated with beautiful, burned in scrollwork. Its color is a dark burgundy that somehow picks out strands of the exact same color in his abundant dark-fire hair. Beneath the jacket, he wears only a bodice, one rising high enough to reach the upper span of his pectorals, and made of a silvery rope that so perfectly matches his eyes that they shine even from across the stage, and decorated with small burgundy coin knots in V starting at his pecs and ending the bottom. His shoes continue the silver line in their back strap and sharp heel, the body a weaving of thin burgundy and black straps.
Host: Brian and Jackie, I believe our audience members are curious about Jackie's ensemble. (Audience applauds and whistles.) "What do you say, Jackie, can you tell us about your jacket?"
(Jackie smiles broadly, an honest, boyish, delightful look for him.) "Sure. Um, I put it together from some very fine, soft leather and did some simple tooling, and there you have it."
Host: "Wow. It's wonderful work. Was it particularly difficult?"
Jackie: "Not the tooling, although it was a bit tedious. But I don't really sew much, so that was a bit of a nightmare."
Host: "Well you pulled it off. Now, what about that bodice?
Jackie now looks anything but shy, beaming with pride. "Brian, my Dom, did it this afternoon."
Host: Brian, that silver is an amazing color on Jackie, and the design is elegant! I have a specific question for you, though."
Brian drags his eyes away from Jackie, and looks at host: "Shoot."
Host: "I understand you practice a kind of rope bondage called Shibari or Kinbaku. Is the bodice an example of that?"
Brian makes a contemplative frown. "Yes, it's an example of the style but Shibari is about bondage. It originated as a Japanese practice, literally used to bind people because they didn't have jails to put them in. The requisites at that time are similar to what guides—make sure the prisoner couldn't undo any of the knots and couldn't slip free, the ropes wouldn't cause any real damage and would be aesthetically pleasing. Jackie's bodice doesn't quite fit that because he isn't truly bound in any way—I've only started with a beautiful man and striven to make something in harmony with his beauty."
Host: "Thank you, Brian. But could you use it as part of a binding? I mean, would it stand up to the strain, so to speak?"
Brian: "Sure. I'd just incorporate ropes that would tie Jackie up nicely, and it should be fine."
Brian and Jackie smile at each other.
Host: "Jackie, you're smiling. Is that an appealing proposition to you?"
Jackie: "Very much so, if it also appealed to Brian."
Host: "I think the answer to that is no mystery. One more question for you Jackie. The kind of ensemble you're wearing today, with the shoes—and I see you've also put on a little eye make-up and lipstick—do you think of yourself as dressing in drag?"
Jackie laughs again. "No. If I was in drag I'd be sporting boobs."
The entire studio full of people laugh at the expression he makes when he says that.
Jackie: "Besides, I've never really wanted to do drag, though I certainly admire others who do. I just like to feel sexy, and I don't think women should have a monopoly on sexy shoes and great cuts and colors clothes."
Host: Brian, how about you? What would you say if Jackie dressed in full drag?"
Brian looks hesitant, perhaps a little annoyed.
Luki: "Ms. Sylvre, if I may?"
Sonny: "Careful, honey."
Luki: "Don't you think you're getting a little too personal there?"
Host: "That's what talk shows are for, Luki."
Brian: "The answer is, if dressing in drag would make Jackie happy, I'd support him. But I really like the man he is a hell of a lot, and I have no desire to see him in full drag."
Host: "Sonny back to you. Have you ever wanted Luki to tie you up?"
Sonny gasps and looks rattled. "No! No, I haven't."
Luki looks ready to skewer host. "Ms. Sylvre, have you read any of your own books? You know the kinds of things my husband has lived through. Seems like your trying deliberately to upset him."
Host: "Well, sorry if that's how you feel, but you know, Jackie's been through some stuff, too."
Brian, Jackie, and Luki all speak at once, each with some version of: "Everyone's different!"
Meanwhile, Sonny has gathered his composure.
Host: "Sonny, I apologize for you uncomfortable. Let me ask your husband a question now.
Luki, you have what would be called in psychological circles, dominant personality traits, right? And you were about 41 when you met Sonny. Before that, had you ever done anything like bondage, D/s, or any kind of BDSM?"
Sonny looks surprised.
Luki: "I told you that before, baby."
Host: "Maybe you can elaborate, Luki. That was the most straightforward answer you've given this evening. While you're talking about it, would you want to do that with Sonny?"
Luki: A long time ago, I had a boyfriend—the only relationship of any length before Sonny. He wanted to explore, so I learned how to do a few things, and gave it a whirl. It wasn't my cup of tea. As far as Sonny goes—well, you know, lady, you wrote the books. I guess now I'll tell the TV viewing public all about it."
Brian: "Don't worry Luki. No one watches talk shows on public television."
Luki: "Anyway, I occasionally get bossy, let those dominant traits you were talking about show. But, Sonny and I are just playing at it, and we both know it. I can't even hold on to that mindset through one whole... sexual encounter. Like I said, it wasn't my cup of tea. Sonny, just like he is, is my cup of tea, and all I want is to give him his bliss."
Host: "How about that Sonny, do you like playing with bossy Luki?"
Sonny: "I love it, but he's right, neither one of us can keep the attitude for long. We end up laughing, usually. And I don't think it's something that would work for us."
Host: "Well, then. Luki and Sonny, it was a pleasure having you." Sort of. "But for the next segment of the show, we're going to spend time with the younger set. You can wait back stage or feel free to leave, explore the city, get some dinner, whatever. Enjoy!'
Sonny: "Thank you, Lou."
Luki: "Let's go, baby. I have an idea about what kind of 'whatever' we might do."
Host: "Brian, what do you see in your future as far as your professional life?"
Brian looks perplexed. "Uh, Lou, you know I can't talk about the future. Spoilers?"
Host: "Right. I was testing you. You passed."
Jackie: "Brian, Sir?"
Brian: "What is it Jackie?'
Jackie: "I'd really like to go now. I have some 'whatever' ideas, too, and I'm hoping you have similar ones."
Brian stands up and walks over to Jackie, pulling him to his feet. He leans and whispers in Jackie's ear, but he's forgotten he's wearing a mic on his collar. "Do they involve you, some more rope, and some lube?"
The audience bursts out in thundering laughter and applause. At first Brian and Jackie are clearly confused, but then Jackie spots the mic. Without a word he unclips it, along with the one he had clipped to his lapel. They both laugh. Jackie lays the mics on a chair, and together the couple turn to walk off the stage.
Host: "Wait, we're not done!"
But Brian and Jackie simply laugh louder and leave, turning back once to wave at the audience.
Well, that's it for out show today, people. Be sure you have entered the rafflecopter! It's a good one. Once again, I thank our hosts, Sinfully Addicted to All Male Romance, Monique, and Mark, and everyone. Thanks readers for coming to the studio, and for being readers. J
A Shot of J & B by Lou Sylvre
Series: Vasquez Security: The Next Generation
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary, Crime Fiction, Fiction, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance, BDSM (light), Suspense, Romance
Cover Artist: Reese Dante
Release Date: March 16, 2015
Six years ago, Brian Harrison helped save the life of Jackie Vasquez, and he’s never really forgotten him. After the rescue, Brian ended his employment with Jackie's uncle Luki and left the US for England, aiming to distance himself from the confused feelings—not lust, but not brotherly—that then sixteen-year-old Jackie engendered. Now Jackie has become a man, and when they meet again by chance, lust with a dose of D/s rope kink is definitely on the list of possibilities. As they get to know each other, though, lust shows every sign of growing into love, deep and true.
When Jackie moves to London for graduate studies in criminal psychology, he and Brian hope they’ll be able to enjoy each other's frequent company. But they haven't factored in the claim Brian's police job with Scotland Yard will make on his time, especially when the “Gaslighter crimes” sap investigative resources. An abandoned aide dog named Soldier leads to a breakthrough clue, and a chain of discoveries fall like dominoes. As Brian rushes to beat the criminal’s game before it escalates to true terror, he comes to an undeniable conclusion: Jackie Vasquez, the man he loves, is in mortal danger.
(From Chapter Two: December 26th, after a day with Luki and Sonny)
Brian had trouble keeping up with conversations and events for the rest of the evening. The only element he remained fully aware of was Jackie. Every time Jackie moved, Brian marveled at some little thing he hadn’t noticed before: the way a golden-red shine off his hair formed almost a halo when the light was behind him; the way thick, loose curls tumbled over his shoulders when he stripped the leather tie out and brushed his hands through the loosened locks; the way his pale eyes seemed more silver than gray when he laughed; the pattern of the freckles on his cheeks; the richness of his voice—slightly lower in tone and smoother in timbre than seemed expected.
In the few hours he’d studied the young man—not entirely on purpose—he’d become familiar with Jackie’s habits. Jackie bit his bottom lip when thinking just like Luki. He canted his head to the side and squinted slightly when listening. His laugh seemed always sudden and sincere—as if it took Jackie by surprise. When he spoke, intelligent words came readily to his tongue, without hesitation, but he only spoke with true purpose. And he was kind, watching for other’s needs—refilling a coffee cup, turning off a light that shone too bright in someone’s eyes, giving Bear a generous scratch behind the ears.
When it came time to leave and Jackie left the room to gather his things, Brian at last turned his full attention to his hosts. He thanked them and quite sincerely said he’d been very happy to see them again. He added, “And the food was fabulous, Luki!”
Luki chuckled, and said. “Thank you, Brian. But as preoccupied as you were, I think if I asked you tomorrow what you ate for dinner tonight, you wouldn’t even remember!”
Brian couldn’t pretend surprise that Luki had noticed. Before he could think of a reasonable response, Luki squelched any possibility of a speech with the biggest hug Brian had ever seen his former boss give anyone besides his husband, and then a giggling Sonny circled his long arms around them both and joined the squeeze. Brian’s ribs hurt a little by the time it was over.
When Jackie came from the back of the house with two suitcases and a backpack, Brian took the luggage from him and went to put it in the rental car while Jackie made his farewells to his uncles. He put the backpack in the backseat, thinking Jackie might want that available, and then laid the suitcases in the trunk. They seemed to fit perfectly in there with his own bags, but when Brian had that thought, he realized what a strange thought it was, and tried to talk himself back into his usual, more sensible perspective.
Don’t be ridiculous, Brian. Even if there was a God and that God made one person to perfectly match one other person in the entire world, luggage fitting in the trunk wouldn’t likely be a sign they’d found each other. He was able to laugh at himself a little, then, and it did help him take a mental and emotional step back. Not too far, though. Now that he and Jackie had crossed paths again, he had no desire to step back too far.
He admitted in a moment of clarity that the prospects for any future development were a bit disheartening. He lived in London, had a career and a flat and a club and a cat there. Jackie lived in Nebraska—at least Brian thought he still did—was in college, still and had years of study ahead of him pursuing the education he needed to pursue his field of interest. And who knew where in the world that would take him?
Just then, Jackie turned toward him, smile clear and lovely in the glow of the porch light, but somehow more reminiscent of the boy of six years ago than he had been at any earlier time that night. It reminded Brian who Jackie was, what he’d been through, and he thought, if ever there was a sub that required a cautious approach, Jackie is it. Brian had enough savvy to know Jackie had become interested in him, but he decided that, though he wouldn’t discourage Jackie’s interest, he also wouldn’t do anything to deliberately foster it. For the time being, he’d let Jackie take the reins, solo.
Rain had begun to fall heavily just as they’d pulled out onto the main road, which would take them back to Port Clifton. Visibility on the road was poor at the best of times, but on a moonless night in heavy rain, Jackie thought the chances that Brian would be able to pass the slow-moving, overloaded-looking log truck ahead of them seemed slim at best. He sighed, but not unhappily, only settling in. The ride would be longer than expected, but they’d left early so they’d likely make their flights in plenty of time.
The sound of the rain and the way it dripped down the windows seemed to close them in, to make the car’s interior seem cozy, its dash lights comforting. And Brian… he seemed steady behind the wheel, relaxed, perhaps even a masterful driver, reminding Jackie of Sonny. With the heat on low, Brian’s scent permeated the air—something with a touch of incense like quality soap, and slightly sexed, and a faint tang of end-of-a-long day man-smell. And….
“I smell leather,” Jackie said.
“Oh!” Brian flashed a smile at him. “My brother gave me a jacket for Christmas. It’s on the backseat. Still new enough to have a pretty noticeable smell. I admit I like the smell, but most of the time I hardly notice it, and I know there are people who don’t like it.”
“I like it!” Jackie laughed at his own enthusiastic answer. He knew he wasn’t being subtle, but then subtlety was not a quality he’d ever been known for. “Quite a lot, in fact. It’s one of the reasons I took up leatherwork.”
“Tooling, burning, sewing. I like to work with soft, lighter weight leathers. I think the tooling and painting people do on heavy leather is fabulous—some of its museum quality. But I like the feel of the softer stuff, the way it responds if I treat it right, the way it looks when the right people wear it.”
“No. Well, heh. Yes I have a few things I wear from time to time, in certain… situations.” Jackie hesitated, knew he was taking the conversation somewhere unexpected. “I had some leather that matched the color of the darkest streaks in my hair, and I made myself a harness—but that one I’ve never worn.”
“Well,” Jackie said, drawing the syllable out slightly, "the occasion just never seemed right for it, yet.”
Brian glanced at Jackie, turned his eyes back on the road, and said in a husky voice that had to be one of the sexiest sounds Jackie had ever heard. Finally, he sort of smacked his lips, chuckled once, and then said, “I’d bet good money you’ll wear it well when you decide to do so.”
Jackie said only, quietly, “Thank you, Brian.”
They didn’t speak for a while, but Jackie had no sense of awkward silence. After a time, Brian seemed to notice the classical music station playing on the radio, and said, “Oh, hey, you can change the station or turn it off if you want. I’m so used to it I forget sometimes not everyone listens to music by long-dead composers.” He laughed, a pleasant, understated sound.
Jackie answered, “No, I like it! Especially this Renaissance music—that’s Palestrina if I’m not mistaken.”
“Yes, I think you’re right.”
“Probably,” Brian said, and for a few minutes they fell back into silence. They were passing through Port Clifton, but most of the town’s lights were off, and the streets deserted. Somehow, the lonely darkness inside made the inside of the car even more intimate. Jackie turned toward Brian and asked, “So, you don’t have a boyfriend, but you have a club.”
“Right,” Brian said, though he seemed to be hesitating. “I go there maybe once a week or so. I’m not going to pretend you don’t know what kind of club I’m talking about, so I’ll just say, sometimes I have a scene, occasionally I watch one. Sometimes I only have a shot of J&B and a good-natured argument with the bartender, Jamie. Sometimes I have lunch. And…,” Brian started but paused for some time before finishing his sentence. “And, when I do have a scene, it’s most likely to involve ropes or leather, and someone submitting to me.”
Jackie thought that held promise, and he felt something like a flutter of butterflies stretching their wings somewhere under his navel. He wanted to laugh, but he bit his lip and limited himself to a smile. He tried to picture what kind of place might appeal to Brian. Of the few BDSM clubs Jackie had been in, one could only be described as sleazy, one quite swank, and the others landed somewhere in-between on the classiness scale. Jackie was betting Brian’s club would be on the classy side, and he decided to test the theory.
“So,” he said, “what’s the club like? The place itself, I mean.”
“Very pleasant—very British, to my American sensibilities. Things are all polished wood and brass and subdued colors up front—understated and elegant. In the back, brick walls, tile and marble floors with lots of thick carpets, steel equipment, lots of leather. Expensive, unfortunately, but other than yarn and my cat, I don’t spend my money on much else.” He glanced at Jackie, smiling.
Jackie smiled back. “Sounds classy.” He thought for a moment, imagining, then added, “And I can see you in that environment, right at home. What about the people.”
“Variety. No one I heartily dislike, though there are only a few I really know. Tommy—he’s the man who has taught me what skills I have, and he’s still my mentor. Sponsored me into the club. Jamie, the bartender.”
“What about subs?”
“Well… I meet them because someone told them to contact me, or told me I might like to contact them, generally. I don’t go to the club to find them. I don’t see anyone repeatedly; for the most part once is good.”
Jackie nodded. He knew Brian might not have seen the motion, but he wanted to think before speaking. Before he was ready, Brian spoke up again.
“Does… does that make me sound like a cold mofo?” He chuckled, but it sounded to Jackie like his answer would matter to the other man.
He answered honestly, quietly. “No. At least, there’s too many other possibilities for me to make that assumption.”
“Right. Never assume. But, do you mind if I ask you something even more personal?”
“Um… I’m just wondering if you… think things will always be like that for you. I mean, do you think, someday—”
“Do I think I might find someone special? Would I want to?”
“Short answer: yes. Yes, I’d like to have a… have more with… the right person, someday.”
Jackie nodded again. He didn’t have anything more to ask, and thought it would be okay to just be quiet and let peace settle as the car rumbled over the noisy steel bridge deck crossing the Narrows. But Brian apparently felt differently.
“What about you, Jackie? No boyfriend now, right?”
“No,” Jackie said, not sure why the question should take him by surprise. “No, I’ve never really had a boyfriend since high school, before my brother and I left home.”
“You’re busy with school and everything, but…. Well, I told you my ‘someday’ answer. What about yours? Hopes, dreams, maybes?”
“All of the above.” Jackie hadn’t hesitated—he knew his own mind well. He added, “As you said, with the right guy.”
They did fall silent then, as Brian maneuvered the rather tricky interchange onto I-5 Northbound, then dealt with a heavy downpour, water on the road, and spray from truck tires drowning the Sonata’s windshield. Jackie had never become used to Puget Sound driving conditions, and the slap of water cutting off all visibility startled him. He drew in a breath and stiffened, but Brian, while keeping the wheel firm in the grip of one strong hand, reached over with the other and laid a hand on his shoulder.
“Are you okay?”
“Yes.” Jackie let the word out on a sigh of relief. “Thanks.”
Brian said nothing but squeezed his shoulder before taking his hand away. Jackie missed it, oddly.
Fifteen minutes later, Brian followed signs off one freeway onto another, and then onto the airport access. “If you want I can drop you at the entrance for your airline, but I think we have plenty of time. If we stay together, we can get coffee or something.”
“Yeah,” Jackie said. “Coffee would be lovely.”
Meet the Author
Lou Sylvre lives and writes on the rainy side of Washington State, penning mostly suspense/romance novels because she can't resist giving her characters hard times but good love. Her personal assistant is Boudreau, a large cat who never outgrew his kitten meow, and he makes a point of letting her know when she's taken a plot tangent too far. He (Boudreau) invites readers to give their feedback as well!
Rafflecopter Prize: Any Vasquez and James book, plus a $10 Dreamspinner gift card