Title: Come Cuddle Me
Author: Missy Welsh
Length: 33 pdf pages, 7000 words.
Publisher: Amber Allure
Genre: m/m contemporary romance
During a bout of loneliness, Tucker naively posted a half-naked photo of himself on Pronblr and requested that someone come cuddle him for the night. He really did mean cuddling, but he didn’t intend for his friends to reblog his request since it also had his address attached.
Now Tucker has Bill, his hairy, gorgeous, and straight older neighbor, pissed at him for being so stupid while a parade of strangers answer Tucker’s plea…whether he wants their attention or not. Tucker desperately needs someone to save him from himself, and Bill might just be that guy…
This cute and sexy short story had me chuckling all the way through, and the deft prose was a real pleasure to read.
Missy Welsh opens this story right in the middle of the action, with Bill at Tucker’s door, asking him “what the hell is wrong with you?” We discover, along with Tucker, that his plea for a cuddle to the only two friends who follow him on Pronblr (a fictionalised Tumblr, I believe) has been reblogged. Tucker had only intended it as a way to let his friends know his new address and that he’s lonely in his new city, but they reblogged it without considering the consequences.
Luckily for Tucker, his neighbour understands exactly what’s likely to happen to a naive and attractive young man who posts a half-naked picture of himself online with a plea for a cuddle–especially when that picture is shared among people who normally exchange gay porn. He takes charge and demands Tucker pack what he needs for a few days, and meanwhile sees off the first few callers at Tucker’s door.
Bill is a great character. Older, larger and hairier, he’s exactly the sort of ”gigantic, furry body builder from hell” the virginal Tucker finds attractive. And while he comes in angry and dominant, there’s a sweetness about him that quickly becomes apparent. He’s disappointed that Tucker hadn’t come to him asking where to meet people, and puts Tucker straight on the issue of his sexuality: Bill might not flame, but he is most definitely gay. Bill also happens to give the best cuddles, as we later find out.
I was tickled by the no nonsense way Bill deals with the callers, telling them all that Tucker is “taken”, and then pinning this note on the door:
NEWJOYINTOWN IS TAKEN. FUCK OFF OR DIE.
This story is limited to just a short time the first evening and then a lazy morning in Bill’s bed the next day, but this works really well. We don’t get a chance to know much about the lives of the two characters, and I was disappointed we didn’t find out why Tucker’s friends did something so inconsiderate, but there was enough here for me to warm to both Tucker and Bill, and really enjoy watching them connect. The ending was particularly satisfying, hitting just the right note to convince me they had a great future together, without anyone making premature use of the L word. What’s more, the writing style is lively and full of character, making me realise I need to go out and buy Missy Welsh’s back catalogue.
I can heartily recommend Come Cuddle Me to anyone who fancies a light and amusing, warmhearted and sexy quick read. It’s definitely earned itself a permanent place on my comfort reads shelf.