We’re so pleased to share this exclusive excerpt with you from Abroad: Book Two by Liz Jacobs.
Abroad, Book 2 by Liz Jacobs
Release date: 1/2/2018
Buy Link: Brain Mill Press
Blurb: Nick Melnikov has finally done it — he’s come out.
To himself. To his sister. And to Dex, who listens, hears him, and understands. To Dex, who kisses him and shows him all that they could be, if Nick could only find the courage. It’s one thing to let yourself be open thousands of miles away from your family, but exchange student Nick is uncomfortably aware that his time with Dex is running out. Who will he be when he goes home again?
Dex Cartwell is as happy with Nick as he’s ever been, but he can’t ignore the shadow of Nick’s inevitable departure from London, back to his life in Michigan. Is it worth it for Dex to expose his heart to another doomed relationship with a predetermined expiration date? What does Dex really want for the beginning of the next chapter in his life, post-graduation?
Dex wants to turn to his best friend in the struggle to find a way forward, but Izzy Jones has her own problems. She’s got one friend in love with her, and when she turns to another for help things get twice as complicated. Izzy never wanted complicated, but life just keeps getting in the way — and sweeping her off her feet.
Then Nick’s mom and sister come for a visit, and he is forced to decide between living his truth and protecting himself from fear and change. It’s going to take a lot of courage and a few leaps in the dark if Nick, Dex, and Izzy are to find a way to live and love on their own terms.
Dex grabbed Nick’s hand and called out to the house that they were going for a walk. One excruciating catcall from Al, and they finally managed to escape.
“Oh, God.” Dex sagged against the front door and closed his eyes. He could feel Nick’s gaze, weighing him up. It took him a while to force his eyes open again.
“You okay?” Nick was watching him, eyebrows drawn.
Dex took a breath. “Yeah. I think so. Let’s go for a walk, shall we?”
Dex wasn’t even entirely certain where he was leading them. He didn’t know enough of the area to know where the nice walks were, but this was Cheltenham. The Cotswolds. Surely it was all nice around these parts. It didn’t even matter. Nick’s hand in his felt right, steadying. Warm.
It wasn’t until they left the residential area and started following a trail that appeared to lead to a downs that Dex felt brave enough to speak. “So, how are you doing?”
Nick was clearly thinking hard about how to respond. At length, he said, “Good. I’m okay. Uh, what about you? You seemed sort of…”
“Freaked out?” Dex huffed out a laugh. “Yeah. Guess I was.” Silence from Nick. Dex couldn’t figure out what was happening in his head. “I think I just … didn’t realise how much it mattered to me. Bringing you home.”
He chanced a look at Nick but couldn’t read him.
“Not because of you, more like … I haven’t brought anyone home from uni before. Like, that I dated. It’s all a bit weird, I guess.”
When Nick didn’t say anything, he went on.
“They can sort of be a lot. I hope … I hope it’s all right they grilled you back there?” He wanted to say, You were so great, but didn’t know how Nick might take it.
“Of course.” Small grin in Dex’s direction. “I thought they were nice. Al’s sort of…”
They exchanged a look. Dex squeezed Nick’s hand.
“Anyway, sorry, again, for just coming right out with it.” He took a breath. “I know you’re not crazy about people being all up in your business, and—”
“Really, it’s okay.” Nick squeezed his hand back.
The knot in his stomach loosened. They walked in silence for a bit, until Dex began to appreciate the air—you never got fresh air like that in London, or Brum, for that matter. It was slightly chilly, crisp. Too fucking idyllic for words.
“Hey.” He stopped and pulled on Nick’s hand until he turned and they were facing each other. “I just … I really like you.” God. Who was he turning into?
Nick’s smile was blinding. Dex pulled him all the way in and kissed him.
“On your left!”
They broke apart to see a runner whip past them, dog at his heels.
Dex didn’t give a shit. Nick turned back towards him. Dex went back to kissing him. A stray thought crossed his mind, and he tamped it down, not wanting anything to ruin the moment. But it stuck with him anyway, crawling around the recesses of his mind.
“Why bother bringing someone home, or even liking them this much, when they were going to leave in two months, anyway? Was any of this worth it?
About the Author
Liz Jacobs came over with her family from Russia at the age of 11, as a Jewish refugee. All in all, her life has gotten steadily better since that moment. They settled in an ultra-liberal haven in the middle of New York State, which sort of helped her with the whole “grappling with her sexuality” business.
She has spent a lot of her time flitting from passion project to passion project, but writing remains her constant. She has flown planes, drawn, made jewelry, had an improbable internet encounter before it was cool, and successfully wooed the love of her life in a military-style campaign. She has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize for her essay on her family’s experience with immigration.
She currently lives with her wife and dog in Massachusetts, splitting her time between her day job, writing, and watching a veritable boatload of British murder mysteries.