Falling in love wasn’t in Damian’s life plan. All Josh wants is to be loved.

Damian has never given any thought to any kind of relationship with anyone. He wants to start medical school and keep full focus on his education. At least, that’s what he used to want. Meeting Josh one rainy night changes everything.

Used and abused since he was a little kid, Josh carries more baggage than one man should have to lift. He’s been betrayed by the people who should have protected him. Scarred inside and out, he’s wary of trusting anyone and despairs of being loved for who he is.

Damian’s carrying his own share of wounds, which Josh may understand better than anyone else. Can two scarred souls make each other whole?


Published: July 22, 2016
Publisher: Arctic Circle Press
Genres: New Adult m/m
Wordcount: 62,000
Tags: abuse, asexuality, borderline personality disorder, gay, mental illness


Our meeting was, in hindsight, rather disturbing.

Rain poured down, and I had cut across Soho Square Garden to get home quicker when I saw him sitting on the grass. His knees were drawn up and his face was buried in the palm of his hands. He was soaked all the way through, and I could see, even from a distance, that he was trembling.

He sat under a tree, but it didn’t give him much shelter from the rain. The streetlight next to him flickered on and off, making the entire setting eerie. I glanced around, but I was the only person here besides him.

I reckoned that was to be expected when it was past eleven at night and the weather was shit.

Even in the middle of London.

I looked back at him.

I couldn’t leave him there.

Not when he was so distressed he was voluntarily sitting outside in the rain clad only in jeans and a thin, long-sleeved jumper.

I walked over, slow and hesitant. He didn’t move as I approached, even though he had to hear my squishy steps in the wet grass.

Only when I stopped at his side and held the umbrella out to cover him did he react.

He lifted his head and peered up at me. Blond hair, darkened by the rain, was plastered to his skin and his eyes, such a brilliant green they startled me, were red and swollen. I realised with a start that he’d been crying. Probably still was. I didn’t believe for a second that all the drops on his face were from the rain.

“If you stay like this you’ll get sick.” It wasn’t the best thing to say, for sure, but then I’d never been good when it came to other people.

He sniffled and ran a hand over his face. Not that it helped much, as his hand was just as wet as the rest of him. “I c-can’t go h-home.” His teeth chattered so badly I had a hard time understanding—but I caught what he’d said, and his words made me fidget uncomfortably.

I couldn’t leave him out there. He’d end up with pneumonia or do something to endanger himself. He seemed distraught enough to be capable of it. I couldn’t, in good conscience, walk away and leave him to his own fate.

“Why not?” I looked around again. There was still no one else around. “You should go home.”

He shook his head fiercely. “I can’t.”

I looked around for the third time, more anxious now. It was getting late, it was cold, and it didn’t look like the rain was about to ease up anytime soon. “Don’t you have any friends you can go to?”

“No.” His voice was only a murmur. “I don’t have any friends.”

I pursed my lips uncertainly. “You can’t stay out here. You’ll get pneumonia.” I’d had that once, and it had not been fun. “I guess you could—“ I cut myself off to swallow, hard. “You could come with me. I live right across the street.”

He looked up at me, a strange gleam in his eyes. “You sure?”

“Yeah.” I wasn’t, not at all. But if I left him out here, and he had nowhere else to go… I couldn’t do that. I didn’t much like people, but I wasn’t heartless. “Yeah, come on.”