Chapter 2 - 2020 Top Ten Gay Romance

“Don’t worry about price. I mean it, Linc.” Monroe whispered it, but it was a small room and I was close enough to hear. I pretended not to.

Lincoln sighed, then shook his head. “No. No, the amaryllis is good. They’re gorgeous and they have all the red and pink and white I want. They’re perfect.” He gave me a big smile, but it didn’t quite reach his dark, liquid eyes.


“Just the amaryllis and the greens we talked about. One bouquet, two corsages, and nine boutonnieres. Eight small centerpieces and two larger arrangements for where we say our vows. That’s all we need.” Lincoln’s voice was stronger than I’d yet heard it, and Monroe deflated under it. But there was also something in his eyes I couldn’t interpret.

I wanted to push and find out what was going on in Monroe’s head, but it wasn’t my place. Lincoln was my client, and he’d spoken.

“All right then! I’ll draw up the contract, you read it over, and then we’ll sign and I’ll get the down payment.” I made a show of sliding across the room on my stool, because it usually amused my clients. Lincoln let out a tiny laugh, so I called it a win. I pulled up the necessary document and started filling in the blanks. “Won’t take but a moment. And I’ll have some mockups in two weeks so you can come in and approve the final designs. Sound good?” 2

Lenore was on her lunch break and Zoe, her other employee, was off, so I was alone in the shop, frantically trying to finish the samples for Lincoln Peters in my office, when the chime alerted me someone had walked in. I stifled the curse that wanted to escape, yelled “be right there!”, and slid the final piece of greenery into the centerpiece. I’d done two different versions in the glass bowl Lincoln had chosen, and was confident he’d love at least one of them. The larger arrangements I’d filled in with other flowers of the same colors that he wanted, but I just wanted to give him an idea. He’d chosen the bouquet, corsages, and boutonnieres out of my big book, so I hadn’t had to make those.

. Who appeared to be alone. I greeted him with a smile, tried not to let my libido get the b

n on hi

n. “But I’m here to approve and send pics.” He held up hi

I’ve come up with.” I gestured a littl

lain about the larger arrangements. But Monroe’s gaze was las

calla lilies. Can you s

ey senses tingling. “But Lincol

greater cost. But I’m paying for them. You s

the client’s behalf. Usually it was for more sinister reasons, and was often one or both of the mothers attempting it. It was against my p

t at a bar. Lincoln is so shy, and his anxiety rules his life. But he saw James and he lost his heart, right then and there. I’ve never seen him be so brave as he introduced himself and bought James a drink. James

is dreams. And they’re so good together. A wedding is just one day, but I want it to be everything Lincoln wants. Right down to

ickled my eyes and I had to draw a deep breath through my nose to keep them from gathering, or worse yet, falling. I nodded without even realizing it, but I still