An anthology of eight Olympic themed M/M stories from a variety of sports from MLR Press.
Stories include: Hot Shots by Michael P. Thomas, Into the Deep by Nico Jaye, The Quad by Kelly Rand, Lightning in a Bottle by Sarah Madison, Shooting for Gold by Whitley Gray, Olympic Goal by K-lee Klein, Tumbling Dreams by Kaje Harper. My story Swimming the Distance stars an Olympic Long Distance Swimmer:
When denial turns to deception, love may not be enough to keep Kyle and Bohdan’s relationship afloat. Hours before leaving for the Olympics, Kyle Christopher discovers that his long-time boyfriend, an Olympic long distance swimmer, has done an interview where he denied being gay. Despite sharing a home and a dog with Kyle, three-time Olympian Bohdan Petrov isn’t ready to come out publicly. After Bohdan’s lies start stacking up, Kyle’s not sure he can keep waiting quietly in the shadows. When their estrangement takes a toll on Bohdan’s performance, both must decide where their priorities lay once and for all.
Excerpt from the flight to London:
“Hey.” Bohdan glanced at the sacked out couple across the aisle — wrapped in blankets, both wearing earphones — before he put a hand on Kyle’s knee. “You okay?”
“Not a chance.” Kyle required his king-size pillow top mattress, his sound machine, and Bohdan wrapped around him to get a decent night’s sleep. The next two weeks were going to be miserable in all sorts of ways. He hoped the Brits could make strong coffee, as tea wasn’t going to cut it.
“You still mad at me?” Even bathed in shadows, Kyle could make out the sheepish expression on Bohdan’s face. His hand kept up a steady massage of Kyle’s knee.
“A little.” Each pass of Bohdan’s strong hand chased away more of Kyle’s anger.
“You know, I met you in a gay bar.”
“You did indeed.” Heat spread though Kyle at the memory. Bohdan seemed to have something to prove, but Kyle didn’t know what. Maybe that he wasn’t a complete closet case. Or that Kyle was being unreasonable. “When was the last time we went out?”
Bohdan scowled and removed his hand. “It’s easier when it’s not an Olympic year. The press ignores me.”
Kyle shook his head and went back to staring out the window at nothing. He wasn’t sure exactly when things had shifted. They’d fallen into a relationship with the kind of ease Kyle had never experienced — things went from fucking to cooking dinner together and falling asleep watching Discovery Channel marathons to let-me-clear-space-in-the-dresser-for-your-socks ridiculously, wonderfully quick. But sometime after Bohdan won his first World Championship, after most of his clothes lived at Kyle’s house, after they’d vacationed together, rehabbed the bathroom, and talked about the future in not-so-vague terms, Bohdan’s paranoia had crept in. Winning his second Worlds and the “Olympic Year” push had only made things worse.
“Maybe once this blows over, we can go back to Blue Moon. Make a night of it — get a hotel room downtown and everything. Wanna pretend we’re strangers and pick me up?” Bohdan’s whisper interrupted Kyle’s sulk.
“I seem to remember it working differently last time.” God, that had been one of the biggest rushes of Kyle’s life, coming off the dance floor and colliding into an intense, muscle-bound stranger who seemed to step straight out of his fantasies.
“Yeah. You’re pretty irresistible.” Bohdan returned his hand to Kyle’s thigh, giving him a squeeze. “I saw your red hair from across the bar and then you shook that ass…I was toast.”
The plane bounced again, hitting another turbulent patch. Kyle flinched. Bohdan’s hand moved from Kyle’s thigh to grip his hand, rubbing in gentle circles.
“We’ll be okay.”
Kyle knew Bohdan meant more than just the flight, so he squeezed back. “Yeah.” Or at least, I hope so.
“You should try to rest.” Bohdan tilted his head, concern in his eyes. The only light was the emergency strip along the floor.
Everyone else in first class seemed to be asleep. Kyle flipped up the armrest between their seats. He could almost pretend they were on their couch. Only at home he’d have his head on Bohdan’s chest with his strong arms draped around him. Whereas here he settled for hand holding, knowing it might be Bohdan’s most daring act for the next two weeks.
“That feels nice,” he whispered as Bohdan massaged the fleshy spot between his thumb and forefinger.
“Yeah?” Bohdan scooted closer so their thighs rubbed. He wasn’t quite cuddling, but he’d definitely crossed the straight-guy-personal-space boundary. “I bet I could help you sleep.”
Find out exactly what Bohdan has in mind in Swimming the Distance