Photo 1: A dark haired man lounges in bed, his thumb rasping over the well-trimmed scruff of his beard. He’s relaxed, bare chested and only wearing sleep pants that sit low on his hips, revealing his toned, flat abs. But he’s still wearing his wire rimmed glasses as he peruses the work he’s brought with him to bed.
Photo 2: Two men stand outside in the rain. They hold each other in a tight embrace, the hard muscles of their bare arms straining as they cling to each other. Rain dampens the longish black hair of one of the men, drops trickling down his neck and leaving goose bumps in their path. The other’s lips are slightly parted, maybe hoping for a kiss from his lover in the rain.
Two years ago, X stopped his friend Y from accidentally killing himself (apathy, starvation, prescription meds, drugs, etc.― up to you) following the reported death of Y’s (military, mercenary, CIA, special ops, journalist, etc.) lover Z overseas. X took Y into his house and X and his pet(s) have helped Y piece his life back together. X held Y as he mourned and watched as Y finally began to smile and enjoy his work again. X and Y have been part-time lovers for the last few months, but X fears he is not enough for Y to be completely happy.
However, now Z has escaped from whatever hellhole prison he was in and is at the door, waiting to reclaim Y. X knows he should let Y go, that Y and Z still love each other. But how can X and pet(s) bear to let the man they have come to love go? Y has loved Z for many years― Z is his heart and inspiration― but X has become his rock. Z’s dreams of returning to Y kept him alive, but how does Z feel when he comes home after two years of worrying about Y to find him in the home of another man?
Request: Lots of past and/or present angst/emotion/grief/doubt. If X and Z didn’t know each other before, then enough time needs to pass for them to get to know each other. No instant-love. Feel free to have Y & Z break X’s heart, as long as they make it better. One or more pets. HEA/HFN for all three men, but not without working through their problems. I love epilogues.
About the pictures: The man on the bed writing in the first picture is X. The two wet men in the second picture are X and Y. Z refused to have his picture taken until he recovered. Or maybe his work made him camera shy. I don’t know. It is up to you to convince him otherwise, if you can. Or try to take one when he isn’t looking. Good luck with that.
P.S. Their names don’t have to start with X, Y, and Z.
P.P.S. I envision this as a contemporary book, but if you really want to, feel free to make it sci-fi― overseas can become another planet or space and the pet(s) can be something alien but cuddly.
Tags: artists, photographers, menage m/m/m, friends to lovers, grief, hurt/comfort, slow-burn/UST, reunited, men with pets
Word Count: 23,977
EVENT: Love’s Landscapes