Authors: Clancy Nacht,Thursday Euclid
Black Gold 2: Double Black
Copyright © March 2013 by Clancy Nacht & Thursday Euclid
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eISBN 9781623001933 Editor: Rory Olsen
Cover Artist: P. L. Nunn
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I want to thank my awesome cowriter and our old editor Jules. And our new one, Rory, who I believe would wait outside a box for us for 2,000 years. Don’t correct me. I want to believe it. Much love and gratitude to P. L. Nunn, who completes us. Yes. P. L. Nunn completes me. Also to TPTB of Loose ID for having faith in us and Z who won’t let us not write this sequel. —CN
In an attempt to one-up Clancy’s nerdery, I would like to add that her alignment is lawful neutral. She is indefatigable in her pursuit of equality, hard work, and getting shit done. Her ability to TCB awes and inspires me. I am, at best, chaotic neutral, and exceedingly likely to do something just because. (Or not do something…just because.) She brings balance to my Force.
Goldie awoke, aching and alone. He patted the spot next to him to confirm that Jett was gone. Working with other bands and changing the industry seemed to create a zeal in Jett to work hard at any and all hours. At least, that was what Goldie understood to be the reason.
Though they had been together several years, the tabloids never tired of casting Jett as a “bad boy” and often dogged him all day, keeping Goldie painfully apprised of where Jett was and with whom. Goldie tried not to get bitter that any heterosexual couple who had lasted that long would probably be considered stable.
Goldie and Jett could throw a commitment party or go to a state or country that did support gay marriage, but Jett had made the point that they did not need any “heteronormative” signifiers to validate their relationship. He was right. They didn’t
it. But Goldie couldn’t help but feel a little resentful regarding Jett’s sweeping proclamations about Goldie’s wants.
Not that any of that mattered. Between moving forward with signing several bands to their label, their own short tour together, and Goldie’s work on a new solo album, there was hardly time to plan a wedding.
Given Jett’s mocking tone regarding Brangelina and their growing brood, Goldie never broached the subject. Besides, he knew that they were far too busy. These days, they barely had time for each other.
Rolling over, Goldie eyed the clock. He’d slept well into the afternoon, but it had been a late night. After a daylong rehearsal, Goldie had performed with another pop icon at her show. Jett had managed to tear himself away from his work to watch Goldie perform and then accompany him to the after-party. When they got home, Jett was keyed up from a combination of blow and watching Goldie writhe around on stage, so they stayed awake until the sky lightened, enjoying each other’s bodies.
When they got together, Goldie hadn’t thought Jett would be the early riser, but he always had somewhere to be. Goldie started his days alone.
As long as he didn’t end them that way, he tried not to fret.
There was a soft knock at the door as he rolled out of bed. No doubt his personal chef wondering if and when he was planning on eating.
Goldie called that he would be ready in a few and took a quick shower. Following the singing, smoking, and deep throating, Goldie wouldn’t be laying down vocal tracks today, but there was no reason he couldn’t get in a good workout.
After the shower, Goldie plaited his long hair and shaved around his short goatee. “Glam pirate” was what Jett called it. “Glam
-pirate” to be more accurate, though it was meant affectionately. Jett said he enjoyed any look Goldie wore, but he had seemed gratifyingly aroused by the masculine aspect.
Still, Goldie felt insulted the media portrayed him as feminine—both because it was unfair and because he thought it was a slight on women, who were by no means weak.
At least, not the women he knew.
Goldie traced his lash line with waterproof liquid liner. He paired white leggings with a long, loose, white, cotton shirt that laced up the front. After strapping on a pair of knee-high platform boots, Goldie emerged from the bedroom.
Instead of the chef, security awaited him. Never a good sign.
Grace held up a hand. “Nothing to be alarmed about, but there’s a young man at the front gate, demanding to be let in.”
“A fan?” Their Studio City home wasn’t a stop on the Hollywood Homes Tour, but neither was its Mulholland Drive address obscure. They’d fielded stalkers and other unbalanced people. Some were fans whose adulation overwhelmed them. Others would rather see them dead than acting as positive gay role models—if either could be considered a role model to anyone.
Grace tilted her head to one side, studying him. A stocky woman in her midthirties with dark hair, almond eyes, and olive skin, she’d been a boxer before she became his guard. “Don’t believe so. He’s shouting that Jett’s his father. Think you should see.”
Usually such claims were made in the media or, worse, in court. Goldie had never known any supposed offspring to show up at their house and start yelling. It was such a Jett thing to do. At least the guy had the character right.
Goldie followed her to the control center and took a seat in front of the monitors. Security cameras throughout the property provided protection from crazy people and paparazzi. At the front gate stood a young man whose resemblance to Jett was so striking that Goldie had to do a double take.
He turned to Grace, who stood behind him with her arms folded. Her lips pressed into a flat line. “That’s why I didn’t call the police.”
Not for the first time, Goldie wished Robbie, his longtime bodyguard and father figure, could live with them 24-7. He’d know what to do.
Goldie turned back to the monitor. The kid had Jett’s dark eyes. His short hair was Jett’s natural color. He had the same cheekbones.
He looked twenty, if that.
The kid reminded him so much of Jett on one of his rants that it melted Goldie’s heart. “Go down and talk to him. If he seems okay, bring him in.”
This was probably insane, but Grace didn’t look put out. Then again, she wasn’t the most expressive person.
“Yeah, well, we’ll see if the coward shows his face, won’t we?” Cole eyed the guard as she escorted him through the front doors of the massive house and into a sizable foyer made to feel even more spacious by its white walls and soaring ceiling. Windows everywhere looked out on tastefully wild landscaping.
He certainly wasn’t in Kansas anymore. When he’d pictured Jethro Black’s house, he never thought it would be so elegant. He’d imagined dark hardwood, probably scuffed and dry, heavy curtains on the windows, ugly furniture cluttered with empty beer bottles and bongs. He’d imagined it smelling like sex and sweat and drugs, not like lilies and fresh-baked goods.
A tingling sensation swept over his sweaty skin. He told himself it was just the airconditioning after his exertions in the California sun. A deeper part of him knew it was because he was finally going to confront the man whose existence had defined his life and whose absence had denied him justice.
Cole walked into the living room, still brooding. His first impression was of an endless view stretching from the tall hill the house was built upon down to the city in the valley miles away. Hazy mountains were visible in the distance, pale blue shrouded in plum-colored clouds.
It was breathtaking.
His second impression was of someone watching him. Cole looked away from the picture windows and froze as he realized Goldie was sitting five feet away, munching blueberries from a white ceramic bowl. Heat flared over Cole’s cheeks. A deep, Midwestern sense of mortification rooted him to the spot.
Goldie set down the bowl, wiped his fingers on a napkin, and then stood and offered his hand. He studied Cole’s face like he was searching for something. “I’m Goldie. I heard you outside, but I didn’t catch your name.”
“Oh God.” Cole willed saliva to happen so his voice wouldn’t crack. He shook Goldie’s hand, feeling like a bumpkin. He couldn’t fight the smile blossoming over his face.
It wasn’t as if he hadn’t known who Jett lived with. If he could’ve claimed ignorance, maybe he wouldn’t feel so foolish. He hadn’t considered that Goldie, object of his teenage fantasies, might be at home.
Cole and his best friend Kyle had bonded over Goldie before they’d had the nerve to come out to each other. They’d been outsiders in that tiny town, and when Goldie came out to the world, he’d seemed to be a part of their little club, even if he never knew it.
Cole admired Jett even before Cole’s mom got sick and revealed the truth about his biological father.
Maybe once Goldie knew what kind of man he was involved with, he could find someone less trashy.
Tamping down his inner fan, Cole stepped back and scowled. “My name is Cole Adams. I’m here to talk to my biological father, Jethro Black. He has a lot to answer for, and he’s never answered any of my calls or letters. I apologize for bursting into your home, but I owe him a piece of my mind.”
Goldie’s eyes softened. “Jett gets a lot of e-mails. I’m not sure he even knows how to check them without me there. Will you have a seat? Would you like a drink? Have you eaten?”
Startled by the hospitality, Cole sat where Goldie had indicated. “Why, thank you. A drink would be welcome, but I ate before I came.”
The familiarity of small talk dazed Cole. He’d been psyched for a fight but instead was being treated like a long-awaited guest.
At that, Goldie looked out the window, then turned to the guard. “Could you ask Hasani to bring up some lemonade?”
After she left, Goldie joined him on the couch. “Goldie is a nickname, so don’t feel like you need to put Mr. before it.” He set the bowl of blueberries between them. “I’m not sure where Jett is at the moment. What makes you think he’s your father?”
“Because he had unprotected sex with my mother nine months before I was born.”