Monday, December 08, 2014

Monday Morsel with Amelia C. Gormley

Hi, and welcome to the Player vs. Player blog tour! Today I’m going to be sharing another scene from PvP, which does, aside from the whodunit mystery and relevant social commentary, have a romantic sub-plot.

Mostly, though, I just like it because of the backstory about Niles’s name. One of my beta readers said Niles and Jordan’s parents should be horsewhipped for giving them those names. :D

An Excerpt from Player vs. Player: Niles encounters an old flame.

Once he got to the police station, Niles walked toward the building in the misting November not-quite-rain. He stood outside for a minute, staring at the doors and willing himself to go in and report this stupid incident. He briefly debated simply leaving, taking a long, leisurely lunch at Veritable Quandary or Kell’s Irish Pub, and telling Jordan and Rosie he’d reported the harassment. But Jordan always knew when he was lying, so what was the point?
Oh fuck. He knew that voice. Knew it in the “sometimes still dreamed of it even ten years later” sense. Swallowing, Niles turned slowly from the doors to face his ex. If you could call a guy who had, in the end, denied the relationship had even existed an “ex.” Timothy Wyatt had been the first guy Niles had ever known who was so determined to remain in the closet that he’d be downright cruel to anyone even thinking of urging him to come out.
Tim was approaching from the on-street parking reserved for cops, dressed in a suit with an equally well-dressed woman beside him. His slightly gingery hair was curling a little in the humidity, which made him appear ruffled and rakish, and his blue-gray eyes were alight, as if he were thrilled to see Niles.
Damn. It really wasn’t fair that he looked that good after all this time.
“Tim. Wow. Hi.” Niles ventured an uncertain smile, wondering just how familiar he should be with a one-time college classmate. “What the hell are you doing in Portland? Is this your wife?” He extended his hand reflexively, his smile firming up as he found his equilibrium.
“What?” Tim looked startled and quickly shook his head as the woman beside him guffawed. “Um, no, of course not. This is my partner, Detective Angela Payne. I’m with the Portland Police Bureau now. I’ve been here for . . .” He glanced at the woman for confirmation. “Seven years?”
“S-seven years? Really?” Just like that, Niles’s composure staggered again. “Um, pleased to meet you, Detective Payne. I’m Niles River.” She shook his proffered hand, looking wryly amused. Niles glanced back at Tim, who was blinking and seemed a little stunned himself, as if he couldn’t quite believe he’d run into Niles.
That makes two of us, honey.
The detective gave him an inquisitive half smile, eyes sparking in her dark-brown face. She was almost as tall as Tim was, which was impressive. He would get a crick in his neck if he had to stand here and talk with them both for too long. “Niles River? So, when you were in school and they called your name out, they said, ‘River, Niles.’ Your parents did that to you on purpose?”
Niles laughed. He’d had to develop a sense of humor about his name long ago, or he’d be pissed off anew with every introduction. Bantering with the other detective also gave him a reason to avoid Tim’s gaze, which had shifted from disbelieving to taking in Niles as if he’d been starved for the sight of him.
Not very circumspect for a guy so firmly in the closet you could hang clothes on him.
“Yes, they really did. They’re both MDs and did a lot of travel for Doctors Without Borders and decided they should commemorate the journey which resulted in our conception. My twin brother is named Jordan.”
“Oh God.” She groaned, laughing with him.
“So, what are you doing here?” Tim asked when they sobered, recovering his own aplomb. “I mean, right here, at the precinct?”
“What? Oh, um, debating whether or not to waste someone’s time.” Niles shook his head ruefully. “I’ve been getting these harassing messages, you see. It’s no big deal, just trolls being trolls, but one of them actually came to my house and now Jordie is worried. He wants me to report it, and you know how he gets when he goes into protective mode.”
“Do I ever.” Tim rubbed his jaw as if the memory of Jordan’s fist still pained him. The strawberry-blond scruff on his face was new. And very nice. “Well, hey, I was just about to head out to lunch after dropping Payne back here. Why don’t you come with me, fill me in on the situation, and I can help you decide whether it warrants a formal report or not?”
Niles gnawed his lip uncertainly, wondering if it was a good idea for the two of them to spend any amount of time together. Especially with Tim still devouring him with his eyes. Finally, he shrugged. “Yeah. Sure. Okay.”
He could have kicked himself as soon as he said it. Staying would be a monumental clusterfuck.
“Bring me back a sandwich,” Detective Payne instructed before jogging up the stairs and into the building, leaving Niles and Tim facing each other on the sidewalk.
He should walk away. Niles shuffled his feet, trying to figure out a good excuse to do so, when Tim jerked his head toward a car parked at the curb. “Come on. I’ll treat.”
The silence as Tim unlocked the door for him was heavy. Niles wasn’t sure exactly what it was okay to say so close to where Tim worked. Being in a car with Tim was an experience he remembered well. Like the car needed to be bigger, because there was too much man there for such a contained space. Pushing away the eerie feelings of déjà vu, he turned a curious—and slightly bitter—gaze toward Tim, observing the way his thick, blunt fingers clenched the steering wheel before he started the ignition. Niles stared at them a moment before he noticed what was different.
No wedding band.
“So what happened?” His voice came out so hard and aggressive that Niles himself damn near flinched at the sound. He suspected he was taking his mood—already poor after the letter and Jordan’s overreaction to it and the protesters and Anthony—out on Tim. He made a damn convenient target. “Last I heard you were heading back to Klamath Falls to take a job with the county sheriff’s office and marry your high school sweetheart.”
“Yeah, it didn’t work there.” Tim shook his head, pulling into traffic. “Largely because I had too many things I kept thinking about that I couldn’t let go of. Like you.”
“Me?” Oh look, there was that old bitterness again. He tried to laugh it off, but the joke came out with a bit of bite. “I thought I was just your college experimentation.”
“Ouch. Guess I had that coming,” Tim muttered, gripping the steering wheel so tight his knuckles turned white. “Well. Funny thing about denial. It doesn’t quite work as well as you think it’s going to.”

*****     *****     *****     *****

Pushing for change can be dangerous when change starts pushing back.

Video game writer Niles River loves the work he does at Third Wave Studios: creating games with mass appeal that feature women, people of color, and LGBTQ characters. To make his job even better, his best friend is his boss, and his twin brother works beside him. And they mostly agree that being on the forefront of social change is worth dealing with trollish vitriol—Niles is more worried about his clingy ex and their closeted intern’s crush on his brother than he is about internet harassment.
But now the bodies on the ground are no longer virtual, and someone’s started hand-delivering threats to Niles’s door. The vendetta against Third Wave has escalated, and to make matters worse, the investigating detective is an old flame who left Niles heartbroken for a life in the closet.
No change happens without pain, but can Niles justify continuing on with Third Wave when the cost is the blood of others? If he does, the last scene he writes may be his own death.

*****     *****     *****     *****


Every comment on this blog tour enters you in a drawing for a choice of one a book from my backlist (excluding Player vs Player.) Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on December 13th. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries.

*****      *****      *****      *****

Amelia C. Gormley may seem like anyone else. But the truth is she sings in the shower, dances doing laundry, and writes blisteringly hot m/m erotic romance while her son is at school. When she’s not writing in her Pacific Northwest home, Amelia single-handedly juggles her husband, her son, their home, and the obstacles of life by turning into an everyday superhero. And that, she supposes, is just like anyone else.
Her self-published novel-in-three-parts, Impulse (Inertia, Book One; Acceleration, Book Two; and Velocity, Book Three) can be found at most major online book retailers, and be sure to check Riptide for her latest releases, including her Highland historical, The Laird’s Forbidden Lover, the The Professor’s Rule series of erotic novelettes (co-written with Heidi Belleau), the post-apocalyptic romance, Strain, her New Adult contemporary, Saugatuck Summer, and of course, Player vs. Player, available now. She is presently at work on two more novels set in the Strain universe, Juggernaut and Bane, coming summer/fall of 2015.
You can contact Amelia on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, BookLikes, Tumblr, or contact her by email using the form at


  1. Oh this sounds like it's going to be a very interesting book.
    sstrode at scrtc dot com

  2. I really like the excerpt!

    Trix, vitajex(at)Aol(Dot)com

  3. Hmm what an interesting read and the last sentence from Tim was amusing as it made me think about the saying 'Denial is not just a river in Egypt', so sorry about that :)

    Thank you for a chance to win one a back list title of Amelia's but I am adding this title to my wish list :) slholland22 {at} hotmail {dot} com

  4. Love a little mystery in my books!

    jasdarts at hotmail dot com

  5. Thanks for sharing the great excerpt! amaquilante(at)gmail(dot)com

  6. Nice cover

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

  7. Can't wait to read this! scarlettruin(at)gmail(dot)com

  8. Great post and love the excerpt! Thank you for the chance at the giveaway.

  9. OMG, they must have hated their parents for a long time for that. LOL


  10. Love the cute names! Great excerpt.

  11. Hi everyone! Thank you so much for commenting. LOL I love this excerpt. Angie Payne may be one of my favorite characters ever.

    Thank you so much to Coffee and Porn for hosting my blog tour!. I’m a little behind on responding because things got hectic last week when, among other issues, my husband got laid off. But I’m gathering up all the contest entries and will be notifying the winner shortly!