Please welcome the fabulous Tempeste O’Riley who’s dropped by to interview Alex and Lyric from Truth in Lace! Enjoy!
“Good morning, Alex and Lyric. I hope you don’t mind me taking you away from your busy high school schedules by asking you a few questions.”
Alex laughs and smiles wide. “What kind of teenager minds ditching homework?”
“Seriously? None I know,” Lyric adds with her own smile.
It’s uncanny how alike the two before me are. Alex is dressed in jeans, a tight red T-shirt, a chain going from his belt loop to his back pocket, a pair of combat boots, and a black leather jacket draped over the back of the chair he’s sitting on. Lyric is in a flirty red skirt, a white blouse, white low heels, and a white leather coat behind her. And yet, as opposite as they seem, the feeling of sameness hangs heavy in the air between them.
“Right. Stupid question. How about I just ask how you’re both doing now that the events in Truth in Lace have happened?”
Alex shifts in his chair and looks around before swallowing hard. “Um, good. It’s nice to know I’m not the freak I thought I was. I mean, to know that there are other people out there like me. To know that Lyric won’t hate me,” he adds so softly I almost don’t catch the words.
“Oh, Lex. I could never hate you. You know better. You’re my wombmate, my other half. Even when I want to strangle you, I still love you.”
Alex chuckles and nods. “Yeah, love you too, you brat. But really, it makes surviving living at home a little while longer a lot easier. Our parentals won’t understand or accept me, but I don’t care about that. I only care about what Lyric thinks.”
“I think you look hot in my clothes.” She fake pouts, drooping her shoulders as she does. “Just no stealing my boyfriend.”
“Oh, ick. No way in hell I’d ever touching your guy! No, uh-uh, so not ever happening.”
“So tell us what you really think,” I interject, trying not to laugh.
“What? Her boyfriend is a total ’phobe and so not my type. Besides, why would I want a guy that she’s—” Alex stage whispers “—had sex with?” He shivers and grimaces. “No. Just… no.”
Lyric swats Alex, then they both start giggling. “Seriously. I don’t think our author needed to know that part. The story isn’t about me, and Tempeste only writes about boy bits, even when you’re having a girl day, you still have boy bits. So lay off my love life.”
“Fine, fine. So what questions do you have for us, Tempe?” Alex faces me and feigns total focus on my every word and motion.
“Your story is a short so I don’t want to ask too much and not leave anything for your readers to discover, but Lyric, what made you want to help Alex? And Alex, when you move away from home, will you start to shop in the women’s department for yourself?”
Lyric blinks a few times and tilts her head to the side. “Um, my best friend and twin was hurting. I could see that plain as anything. There’s little I wouldn’t do for Lex, including a little research. It wasn’t hard to Google about boys that weren’t boys all the time and all. I was only worried about being caught by out librarian as I didn’t want it getting back to our parents. He’s right, they’re both horrible about anyone that’s not what they deem acceptable. I sucks, but Lex and I’ll move away to college in just a few months and be free of their control. I’ll help teach him to dress right and do his makeup and all then. I’ll make sure he’s a beautiful woman, just like he’s a handsome man.”
Alex sniffles and leans over to hug Lyric. “Love you too, Ly,” he whispers. After a moment, he sits up and smooths his hands down his jeans before he looks up again. “Sorry about that. Um, shopping? Right?”
“Yep. You and shopping in the women’s department.”
“Yeah. Right now, I only have what you know about from in the pages of Truth in Lace, but once I’m free of here, I will explore more and shop for all of me. Not just what others deem acceptable. It’s hard not being me on the days where what I’m wearing now wouldn’t be true. Today it is, but yesterday this would have grated on my nerves. Actually, what I wore yesterday did drive me nuts because it wasn’t me. I was having a very girl day but I, of course, had to pretend to be all boy….”
“I’m so sorry, Alex. I wish I could make the world understand that even gender isn’t binary. I’m Genderfluid, as is my youngest, so I do get it. I promise. It’s a constant struggle to deal with others that don’t understand or that refuse to, but I promise, it get’s better. And once you’re on your own, you can decide how to live and chose who is and is not allowed in your life. So don’t give in on give up, hon.”
He gives a watery smile. “I won’t. No matter what. I won’t!”
“I won’t let him,” Lyric adds, her voice firm.
“I’m glad. Now, I want to tell those reading this that Lyric is Alex’s twin sister from Truth in Lace and that you see her again in Temptations of Desire, which is where Alex finally gets his happily ever after! Temptations of Desire is a full novel and came out first, which is how I would read them, but either order is fine as neither will spoil the ending of the other.
“Thank you, Alex and Lyric, for stopping by and letting me chat with you and introduce you a little to your readers. Is there anything either of you would like to say before you go?”
“Yeah,” Alex says, shifting in his chair again. “Never think you’re the only one like you. You’re not a freak. There are others and you are not alone! Being Genderfluid is not wrong, sick, or even all that weird. You just need to reach out and find others like yourself. I was lucky, Lyric helped me see that. I hope you find your way and remember, never give up!”
“Thanks, Alex and Lyric!”
The body does not dictate who the soul will be inside.
by Tempeste O’Riley
Desires Entwined, #3.5
Gay, Gender fluid, Contemporary, Coming of Age
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: November 5, 2014 (ebook)
Length: Short / 24 pages
Add to: Goodreads
When Alexander James Noble looks in the mirror, he sees a freak looking back at him. Despite his high grades and plans for culinary arts school after graduation, his parents would hate him if they really knew him.
Forced on a shopping trip with his twin sister, Lyric, and her friends, Alex eyes the girls jealously, longing to be able to dress like them—to be them. The constant struggle of being “gender fluid,” wrestling with an identity that seems to change daily, begins to wear on Alex. But all those questions and fears seem more manageable when his sister gives him his first skirt and lace panties.
Other Books by Author:
*shorts in series +shorts in anthologies
“I found it a beautiful tale of unhappiness changed to romance and then love with a happy ending.”
—Rainbow Book Reviews, on “Designs of Desire”
“Tempeste O’Riley clearly has designs on our attention with Designs of Desire, a story as heart breaking as it is heart warming.”
—Sensual Reads, on “Designs of Desire”
“The writer did an excellent job with the charactesr, they are likable and perfect. Not perfect in the way that they have no flaws, but in a way that they grab you and complement each other.”
—Love Bytes Reviews, on “Temptations of Desire”
About the Author:
Tempe is a hopeless romantic that loves strong relationships and happily-ever-afters. Though new to writing M/M, she has done many things in her life, though writing has always drawn her back–no matter what else life has thrown her way. She counts her friends, family, and Muse as her greatest blessings in life. She lives in Wisconsin with her children, reading, writing, and enjoying life.
Tempeste O’Riley will be giving away an eBook from her backlist to one lucky winner. Just leave a comment below for a chance to win. Giveaway ends Friday October 9th at 12:oo am Eastern US time.