Title: Vulnerability – Inches of Turst #10
Author: A.R. Moler
Length: 5,200 words (21 pdf pages)
Publisher: Torquere Press
Genre: m/m contemporary
Sometimes it takes an unexpected disaster to transform a perspective. Brian Townsend forgets some architectural plans that he needs for a project. He makes the mistake of going back and getting them–in a risky part of town, at night. Tristan Blake’s heart stops when he gets an emergency cell call from his lover Brian. When his heart starts beating again, Tristan’s view of his world is changed. It’s time to be brave. Is Tristan finally ready to knock down that last wall?
Well, I’m thinking that ten inches brings this series to an end. To quickly summarize, Tristan and Brian met at a Halloween party one Halloween and when Tristan had to leave suddenly without leaving his contact info, Brian, an architect, eventually tracks him down. However, Tristan has trust issues after being dumped by his lover of many years and his rich family looks down on his career as a cop. Over time, Brian has been patient and not pressing Tristan for more than he’s willing to give up.
In this edition, Tristan is working nights and getting frustrated with not seeing enough of Brian and starting to think that maybe he wants more than just a boyfriend. Brian’s work on a community centre project takes him back to a rough part of town to pick up some documents he forgot, and he is attacked by a mugger and slashed and badly injured. His near-death brush finally forces Tristan to make the ultimate next move in their relationship.
I really liked both guys and I loved all of the stories, but I believe the first story came out in October 2010. So it’s been a long haul in real-world terms to get them to this point. It was very frustrating at times to get the equivalent of baby steps in their relationship, although I was happy to see them finally make that commitment in this story to a permanent relationship. I also appreciated that after nearly bleeding to death, Brian wasn’t having wild monkey sex a day later, I think his recovery was pretty realistic.
Unless you are a follower of the series, this story may not be more than a guy who finally clues in that he loves his boyfriend and wants more. I would love to see the author someday put all of the short stories into a compilation, with the edges smoothed perhaps because I think they are a couple most people would enjoy reading about in one fell swoop rather than in little bites. Still, for those of us who have been following it, I was happy to see Tristan finally pull his head out and realize Brian is the perfect guy for him.