Excerpt for Stalking the Kilt by , available in its entirety at Smashwords

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Published by EVERNIGHT PUBLISHING ® at Smashwords


www.evernightpublishing.com




Copyright© 2018 Keely Jakes



ISBN: 978-1-77339-613-2


Cover Artist: Jay Aheer


Editor: Karyn White



ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


WARNING: The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. No part of this book may be used or reproduced electronically or in print without written permission, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in reviews.


This is a work of fiction. All names, characters, and places are fictitious. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, organizations, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.



DEDICATION


For kilt-wearing men everywhere.



STALKING THE KILT


Stalking Love, 1


Keely Jakes


Copyright © 2018


Chapter One


Dane Murphy walked across down the airport concourse slowly as he argued with himself about getting back on the next plane home instead of getting on the one going on to San Antonio. So far it had been a hell of a trip, and not in a fun, exciting way. The plane had taken off so late due to weather that his connecting flight had departed before they had even touched down in Charlotte. It then took another twenty minutes once they landed to reach their gate and disembark the small commuter plane.

Dane was grateful that, in the endless minutes before he could escape the plane, he had managed to call his travel agent, who was able to get him on another flight. Only problem was it did not leave for another three hours.

He would be later than he liked checking in, but that just meant the sightseeing around San Antonio that he had hoped to do today would have to wait until later during his stay. He would also miss the casual pre-dinner bar gathering, which consisted of schmoozing with his fellow authors who would no doubt brag about their latest sales and contracts. Something Dane had never been comfortable doing. The actual mystery writers’ conference began late the next morning with him sitting on a panel of five best-selling authors taking questions from the audience and sharing their knowledge about how to write the perfect murder mystery.

Though he was already tired from a late night, or rather early morning, of finishing up the final edits on his next book, and then waking up after three hours of sleep to get to airport for his pre-dawn flight, he didn’t dare try to nap in the airport. He was such a heavy sleeper that he might sleep right through the boarding call. He promised himself that once he was on the plane he would crash. After all, it was a five-hour flight with nothing to do except sleep. He just needed to eat something before heading to the gate for his next flight.

A hermit by disposition, the only reason he had agreed to attend this convention was to hear, meet, and, he hoped, shake hands with T.S. McKellen, the keynote speaker. The best-selling author of Dane’s favorite mystery/thriller series was so reclusive, he made Dane look like a party animal by comparison. Though he had once spent a full day searching online for a picture of his writing idol, the only picture he had found had been of the back of the man’s head, shoulders, and an upraised right hand flipping off the photographer. The conference organizers had proudly boasted this would be the man’s first appearance in ten years. Dane refused to miss this one chance to meet the man. T.S. McKellen was the reason he had become a mystery writer himself, and he needed to thank the man and offer to buy him a drink.

The fact that his agent had signed him up for the book-signing on the last day of the event was secondary. Dane just hoped the books the publisher had shipped had arrived to the hotel on schedule, and that whoever was in charge of guest mail hadn’t sent them back.

After a quick stop in the first men’s restroom he came to, Dane headed for the customer service counter for the boarding pass for his new flight. Then, with ticket in hand, he made for the gate his flight would leave from. With luck, he would be able to find something to eat along the way.

Dane wasn’t overly hungry, but if he did not eat, his blood sugar would crash. The last thing he needed while away from home was a sugar crisis, which would inevitably lead to a migraine, or worse. The pain, nausea, and need to be in a black, silent box would cause him to miss the conference. No, it would be better to eat now and save the snacks packed in his carry-on for later. He knew he would eat them at some point over the next few days.

So caught up in his internal debate, Dane only peripherally noted a man brush past him. A scent that he could only describe as a spicy, exotic, and wild caught his attention.

It took only a second for his brain to snap to attention. At the same time, his libido jumped from zero to interested. Turning, he looked for the owner of the scent. It was a testament to Dane’s wildly changeable-in-an-instant luck that there was a momentary lull in the endless parade of people traversing the concourse.

There. The man who had just brushed past him.

Dane dragged his carryon in a circle then began race-walking in the hopes of keeping up with the only man he had ever seen brave enough to wear a kilt while flying around the United States.

The kilt-wearer walked—no, prowled—through the airport, much like a lion on the hunt for his next meal. Dane struggled to keep up without actually looking like he was stalking the man ahead of him. As he walked, Dane made mental notes. As soon as he had the chance, he would write up a character description because this man would definitely show up in a future book. Hell, he might even come up with a new mystery series starring such a badass character.

If only he could have talked to him. Then he would have been able to round out the hot, sexy character that was coming together. The man kept going, not aware that Dane was behind him.

Then Dane lost him in the thickening crowd. With a sigh of resignation that he would now have to build the rest of the character without seeing more than the back of the tall, broad-shouldered man, Dane stopped in the middle of the human flood that parted around him.

After watching for another minute with a silent prayer the man would come back this way, Dane finally gave up. He turned his suitcase around and slowly headed back the way he’d come. As he walked down the wide corridor, he looked around, checking out the various little sales kiosks that lined the walls.

At the book stall, he paused, then turned to walk closer when one of the book covers caught his attention. Moving closer, he could not contain his smile as he saw there were a few copies of his latest book on the shelf.

Reaching out, he could not help but stroke two fingers across the cover. The cover that was exactly how he envisioned it.

“It’s good,” the woman behind the counter said. “All of his books are good.”

“Yeah, I know,” Dane said, his smile growing even brighter. “I wrote it.”

“Really?”

“Yep,” Dane said looking from the book to her. “Would it be okay if I signed them?”

The woman, whose nametag identified her as Kate, nodded. “You’d do that?”

“Sure. I have time before my next flight,” he said, pulling a pen out of his briefcase.

“Ummm, before you sign anything, are you sure you’re Dane Murphy?” Kate looked nervous, which had Dane wondering if there were many people who pretended to be authors so they could sign books in airports.

Turning the book over, he held it up so she could compare the author picture on the back cover to his face. “It actually looks better than I do today,” he said with a grin.

“Oh, man, I’m so sorry, Mr. Murphy,” Kate said with a relieved grin.

“No problem,” Dane said as he opened the first book.

It only took a few minutes to sign all the books she had in stock, those on the shelf, as well as the few she had tucked away in a storage area.

Once the books had all been signed, and had received the little gold “autographed copy” stickers he pulled out of another pocket in his briefcase, he stood and watched the flow of humanity, waiting for it to thin out a bit before he started his journey back down the corridor to where there were a handful of restaurants.

Turning with a smile to say good-bye to Kate, Dane found himself staring at the kilted man, who was walking on the outside edge of the crowd straight at him. His eyes widened as the man approached. He was as manly and sexy from the front as he was from the back, and Dane’s entire body went on alert.

When he looked into the man’s face, he was stunned to find the man staring back at him, with a half-smile on his lips. Their eyes met, and the man winked at him just as he passed by.

Dane couldn’t help but turn and watch the man walk away, his pace a bit slower than before.

“Oh, my,” Kate said, forcing Dane to turn away and look her way. “Now that is a sexy man.”

Dane smiled. “I bet you see all sorts of sexy men every day.”

“Maybe, but very few look like him. Why aren’t you going after him?” Kate asked with a grin.

“Because I don’t want to make a fool of myself,” Dane admitted honestly. “But I do need to get something to eat before my next flight. Have a great day, Kate.”

“Yeah, you, too. Hope you catch up to Mr. Kilt.”

Leaving Kate chuckling behind him, Dane headed the same way the kilted man had. He scanned the crowd, hoping he could catch up with the man. But the man had apparently disappeared once again. Which was kind of surprising. After all, how many men were in the airport at that moment wearing a kilt? Stepping out of the flow of faster moving traffic, Dane walked slower, checking out the various restaurants while debating on whether he wanted pizza, a burger, or something from the real, sit-down barbecue restaurant.

“Hey.” A deep voice calling from his right caught his attention.

Turning, he found himself looking into a pair of deep blue eyes. Widening his gaze, he recognized the man. “Hi,” he said, his mouth drying like a towel in the desert.

“Hello.” The man smiled at him as if he knew he was frying Dane’s brain cells.

“Hi,” Dane repeated.

“How about ye join me for a bit ta eat?” The man’s Scottish accent and deep voice had Dane’s cock surging to attention.

Checking his wristwatch, Dane smiled. “Okay, I have a couple hours, and I do need to eat something before my next flight.”

“Verra good. And maybe I can talk ye into changin’ yer travelin’ plans,” the man said with a smile that had Dane’s cock, balls, and asshole clench with excitement.

Dane hesitated a moment. “Only if you’ll tell me your name.”

The man smiled, which had Dane’s entire body shivering in reaction.

“Sully McKellen,” the big man said as he held out a hand.

“Dane Murphy. Glad to meet you,” Dane said, then sucked a breath when electricity shocked his palm as their hands touched.

“Verra glad ta meet ye, too.”


Chapter Two



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