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Prise de Fer

Author(s): AR Moler

Chemistry major Kelly Hendrick has lusted after his analytical chemistry professor Simon Randall for a several semesters. They share common interests in reading, fencing and, of course, career field. Now several semesters past being Dr. Randall’s student, Kelly finally dares to cross the line and pursue his attraction to the professor. He finds the feeling reciprocated, but there are deep, more than human secrets in Kelly’s life. An assault on Simon forces Kelly to confront the idea that Simon needs to know more. Can Kelly own up to non-human genetics and maintain his growing relationship with Simon?


Thirty-seven analytical chemistry exams later, Dr. Simon Randall’s headache was reaching migraine proportions. He swiveled his chair around to face the computer on the other half of his L-shaped desk. The time code at the bottom of the screen read 1:27 a.m. Students might have to study for some really brutal exams, but grading them sucked just as bad. The small liberal arts college Simon taught for favored exams that were not simply multiple choice. No just stuffing the strips of papers through the Scantron. He had just begun entering the exams grades into a spreadsheet when a soft knock jarred him out of his glazed stare at the computer. He looked up to the open door of his office.

“I see you’re burning the midnight oil too, Dr. Randall,” said Kelly Hendrick. The twenty-one-year-old student was leaning on the door frame, a saucy but tired smile on his face. Simon rubbed his thumb and forefinger over his burning eyes.

“Uh-huh. So, what brings you to the science building at this truly obscene hour?” asked Simon. The professor was fond of the young man. Simon had taught him both analytical and instrumental chemistry the previous year. They shared some common non-career interests in fencing and science fiction as well.

“P chem. Dr. Newbold said as long as the lab books were in the box outside his door by the time he got in tomorrow morning, everything was kosher.” Kelly ran a hand back through his baby-fine dark hair that Simon noted always seemed to be falling down across his eyes. And they were absolutely beautiful dark eyes.

Both semesters of the previous year, Simon had listened to the chit-chat that occurred during lab. It would seem based on the scuttlebutt that Kelly had endured a long series of dismal, loser boyfriends. The professor was never quite sure why. The young man was gorgeous, brilliantly intelligent, and genuinely sweet, but sometimes Simon thought Kelly must carry a metaphoric “kick me” sign to attract such partners. If Simon had the chance to date him…oh that was so not a great idea. Even if the young man was no longer his student, such an idea could possibly get him in departmental hot water.

“How do you think you did on the reports?” asked Simon.

“Me? I think I did a good job. Guess I’ll have to wait and see if I get nickeled and dimed on the details.” The easy grin Kelly gave him stirred something in Simon’s gut and lower down too, but the surge in his blood pressure also sent a wave of pain through one eye socket.

“You okay?” asked Kelly. “Your face just went all pale.”

“Killer headache. Must be a symptom of too much exam grading,” said Simon, a faint attempt at humor. “Are you heading out?”

“Yeah, I was. When I saw your office light on, I figured I’d say hi.”

“I’ll walk out with you. I don’t think I can stand dealing with this anymore tonight.” Simon stood up slowly and picked up his heavily loaded backpack, slinging it on one shoulder. Every movement caused his pulse to pound in his skull.

The two men walked slowly down the hallway to the stairs. As they descended, Simon wondered vaguely if Kelly noticed just how tightly his hand was clutching the railing to keep from falling.

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ISBN (Print):
ISBN (Electronic): 978-1-60370-850-0
Genre: GLBT
Date Published: 11/07/2009
Publisher: Torquere Press

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