Perfect Bound Softcover(B/W)
Chasing a fresh start …
Danny, an East End–born entrepreneur, leads his five gay friends and business partners on a joint venture in the countryside. When it all comes to a sudden end, the friends find themselves at the mercy of Franco, a ruthless gangster who will stop at nothing to get what he wants. Danny and his friends soon learn that the hardest decisions are the ones which leave you no choice.
Complicating matters, each partner finds that the problems of their present and past have trapped them in place and will not be left behind without a fight. A chance encounter, a hasty decision, and other seemingly innocent events bring the group to a boiling point. And soon, each will find himself on a path he never imagined.
Mansworld takes you on a journey woven with love, sex, family, gangsters, crime, and survival. For this group of friends and partners, a painful lesson awaits—your past will decide your future.
“It was cruel, and lonely and cold, and it was scary Danny, it was utter hell, utter living hell,” he stopped. “And one night I saw a way out of it, someone to take care of me … I needed the break, I wanted to get myself together, if not for the rest of my life … lazing in the sun, great food, nice clothes, it seemed like heaven … I was a mess back then Danny, the men, the drugs, I hadn’t dealt with my grief, I’d just ran from it, hid away in a nightmare I couldn’t wake up from,” his face was full of bad memories. “I wanted off those cold bitter streets, freezing, trying to sell yourself to each passing car like you are on auto-pilot, you don’t think, you just do … all those sicko’s in the world and you’d just step into the car and place your life in their hands. Man upon man upon man. I’ve been raped, and beaten, humiliated and made to feel like nothing … if you’re lucky, you fight your way out of it and go on to chance it again the next night. Not everyone’s lucky. Don’t imagine it was anything like the cushy set-up I stuck out for in Manchester, harmless men I could pick and choose. So yeah, I seized the opportunity when it arose, who wouldn’t have? I couldn’t have had any idea this would …” he paused, to take a deep breath more than anything. “There was something about the man to expect the unexpected, but I didn’t know he’d want to take me back to Sicily with him. He told me his name was Rocco Cini and I lived with him for four months, that man in the picture, that man you say is Franco Fenech,” Pavel came to the end of his tale.
Danny was stunned as he sat there, a million thoughts running around his head but just an almost painful inability at the base of his throat when he tried to voice them, like he couldn’t breathe, couldn’t get enough air to do so.
“Danny, say something to me please, this has shocked me too.”
“Shocked you!” The words suddenly broke free as Danny stood up. “How’s that?! You shared the bastard’s bed for four months! Oh God, I just can’t believe this, with Franco, out of all the other guys you’ve fucked, couldn’t you have just left him off the list!”
“No!” Pavel stood up. “He was good to me, and this is my past and you’ve always known about it, it’s where you found me!” He was stung by Danny’s words.
Danny swallowed hard before he spoke. “Yeah, but I didn’t know their names or what they looked like, that bloke at the restaurant was bad enough, but Franco! God, he’s touched you, did all sorts with you!”
Suddenly something over-stretched in Pavel flared, “Yeah, and I let him, and did it all back,” he went up to him, “and I loved it, every night, morning and whenever else he wanted it ’cause I was infatuated with him, is that it, do you wanna hear the truth? Or do you wanna hear the lie ’cause it’s easier? That all I saw was the money, that I didn’t enjoy it, that I kissed him and touched him and went down on him because that’s what I do, because that’s all I am, is that what you want me to say?!” He was burning with rage, hurt beyond sadness. “Just like I do with you maybe, all those intimate things we do, every time I make you come it’s all just an act, isn’t it? An act I’ve been perfecting for years, you’re just another man to perform it on,” tears had formed in his eyes, his anger an escaped beast. “So, you’ve gotta look at him knowing he’s had me, but what’s the big deal in that? The whole fucking world has, haven’t they?!”
“I just can’t take this, can’t believe it,” Danny said, as if mentally stumbling for some kind of solid form to steady himself by, “I can’t believe this is happening.”
“Then don’t,” Pavel turned his back on him again. “Run away from it, go on Danny, just leave me alone.”
Danny swallowed hard again. “I just need some time to take this all in, if you know, then there’s a chance he knows, it’s about time I did something and I can’t think about this now,” he said firmly and then he left.
After hearing the door slam, Pavel just stood there for a few moments, trying to regain some kind of calm, he wasn’t sure if he could take this anymore, he wasn’t sure if he had the will. He was sure he’d lost Danny now, because of his past, because of Franco … angry and heartbroken, he wanted something back, and he wasn’t thinking of sleeping with Franco to get money as he’d been considering. He looked at the photo album, flicked back to those pictures of Danny and his bright smile. God, he had to admit, no matter how much he’d hurt him with his words, with his disdain for his past, he loved him still. He had loved him too long now not to forgive him. He went out into the bar and saw them sat there, waiting for an explanation.
Parked round the back, Franco hadn’t seen Danny leave through the front, and he sat there wondering what exactly he was waiting for. Pavel Repka. God he regretted that whole stupid incident, how could he have believed that pig over Pavel? How could he have not put it behind them? How could he have believed Pavel would have led him on? Pavel even then, had been no silly little boy; he finished what he started. Anton would have had no reason to beat him black and blue and tie him down, if Pavel had indeed encouraged him as Anton had sworn. Well, somewhere between brutally killing Anton and chucking Pavel out, in his rage, he hadn’t been able to see it. He’d felt too betrayed and humiliated, someone else just taking their pleasure with his well-desired beautiful boy, who never gave him cause for jealousy, even with the young men who bravely made eyes at him, he never returned their glances. Franco had never been a naïve man, he knew Pavel had been led by his money, but that he had accepted, that he was a prostitute, that he earnt his money in men’s beds and saw any man’s money as good as his, all that he had lived with, but this had crossed the line.
He wondered how the years and no doubt further prostitution had changed Pavel and he longed to see him again. Pavel could bring a smile to anyone’s face, and he hadn’t smiled properly since that day. “Give me another ten minutes,” he told his driver, lost in the memory of his corn silk hair, Adriatic eyes and smooth skin and wanting only to linger in it a few moments more.
“Shit, Pav, you really have been around, haven’t you?” Miles sighed as Pavel finished telling them what he had just told Danny.
“Where’s Danny?” Mike asked.
“Gone,” Pavel replied simply, sitting down on one of the bar stools, “I think it’s over,” he added.
“Oh surely not, I mean, you didn’t know, did you? It was years ago, it’s not your fault,” Garry said as he fixed him a straight vodka. “Bloody hell, let’s see the colour of your money boys,” he fished down his pocket for his wallet, “we’re drinking the place dry,” he gave a small brave laugh, as he collected a note from each to add to the pile he was placing under a beer mug near...
Bex Wild, enjoys writing, baking, Pilates and going on shopping sprees in her free time, and is currently working on her next novel.
Perfect Bound Softcover(B/W)