Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Jocks, Geeks, and Love - Oh My

Heavy Lifting is now available for your reading pleasure.  Some time ago I was going to the gym every day.  I can't any more because getting older really stinks,  but that's another story.  When I was going to the gym, I was around a number of really hot and built guys and became friends with most of the people at the gym.  It was great.  And when I sat down to start this story, I decided that I wanted one of those guys as a main character because well... who wouldn't.  And being a geek at heart, I paired him with the skinny kid who always got shoved in the locker.  I guess I really love an opposites attract kind of story.  

Would-be journalist Reg Applewhite is a slight, geeky guy who knows from high school experience that he’s the perfect size to be shoved into a locker. He writes for his sister’s fashion and gossip blogs and is very understandably reluctant when assigned to cover a local bodybuilding competition for material.

Jack Ponte is a physical god, with a perfect body, poise, and intense eyes. But it’s his grace that captures Reg’s attention, and when Reg asks for an interview, Jack agrees. After all, he’s looking for a life after bodybuilding, and Reg’s blogs offer a chance at something less fleeting.

During the interview, they discover mutual interests in fashion and video games that lead to friendship and deeper feelings neither expects. Reg finds it hard to believe that a god-man like Jack would see anything in him, and Jack is just as shocked when Reg seems to see beyond his looks to the person inside. But there is a price to pay for everything, and Jack draws the kind of unwanted attention that could threaten to pull them apart… or worse. Together they need to figure out a way to lift each other up and push through the challenges.

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“Nope. No fashion trip. God, it’s about as far away from that as possible. I’m covering a bodybuilding contest this Saturday. Some guy who is going to be there has reportedly been seen with Monica Graham.”

“You’re kidding. What’s his name?”

Reg didn’t have time to look up the details in his notes. “Something Ponte.” The last name was all he could remember.

“Jack Ponte?” Marti asked, barely able to contain himself.

Let the gushfest begin!

“Yeah. That’s him. Why?” Reg put the phone on speaker and set it on the passenger seat, then started the engine and getting out of the parking spot before the meter ran out and he got a ticket.

“Because according to the pictures on the web, that guy is drop-dead gorgeous. Jack’s got a face that would stop traffic, and eyes….” He was probably fanning himself; Marti had a tendency to do that. “And that body. He could bench press me any time he wanted to.”

“Good lord.”

“I just texted you links. You need to take a look at this man. If he’s going to be there, holy cow.” Marti let out a hoot. “I just found some pictures of him on stage, and let me tell you, there is no doubt. This guy is all man, from head to toe and all the important bits in between. Whoa, mama.”

Reg pulled up to a light, but Marti was still talking a mile a minute.

“I want to go with you. How many passes did Isabelle give you?”

“I’m not sure. I just took what she handed me, too shocked by the whole thing to really give them much thought.” Now he was back to that damned locker room thing, and he could smell the inside of that metal box, with the socks that had probably not been washed for a decade.

“Then check. Because I’m going too. I want to see if this guy is like his pictures. And if he is, well, maybe I can separate him from the other beefcake and see if he might be up for a good, long ride.”

Reg sighed. “If I have an extra pass, and if you come with me, you will not be making passes at the contestants. You’ll have to behave yourself and leave your flaming asshole at home. I’m supposed to be working, so if you come along, then you’ll be working too. So keep it in your pants and let me get home so I can figure out how I’m going to handle this. Besides, the guy was seen with a reality star—a girl—so it isn’t likely that the particular beefcake you’re drooling over enough to short out your computer would be interested in someone like us.”

“Ah-ha… like us. So you are interested in seeing what’s up with this guy.”

Reg should have picked his words more carefully, and he ground his teeth for a second. “Just because someone is hot and all doesn’t mean that I’m going off on some flight of complete fantasy about him. Control your hormones, or so help me, I’ll go alone.”

“So I am going?” Marti pressed, and Reg grabbed what his sister had given him when he stopped at a light.

Andrew grew up in western Michigan with a father who loved to tell stories and a mother who loved to read them. Since then he has lived throughout the country and traveled throughout the world. He has a master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and works in information systems for a large corporation.

Andrew’s hobbies include collecting antiques, gardening, and leaving his dirty dishes anywhere but in the sink (particularly when writing)  He considers himself blessed with an accepting family, fantastic friends, and the world’s most supportive and loving partner. Andrew currently lives in beautiful, historic Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

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