A HUGE THANKS to Megan Erickson & Santino Hassell stopping by the Back Porch and for talking Hard Wired‘s lovebirds Jesse and Ian into tagging along — and being such good sports!
Thanks for having us on Back Porch Reader! We decided to play a little newlywed game with Jesse and Ian from Hard Wired.
Food and drink of choice while gaming?
Jesse: Ian doesn’t eat or drink when he’s really into a game. I don’t know how he didn’t dehydrate before he met me, but now I force him to eat some protein and drink some water every couple of hours.
Ian: Okay, that is true, but it’s because I am very focused and hate crumbs getting in my keyboard! As for Jesse… he grossly eats old takeout out of the containers. Sometimes he doesn’t even warm it up.
Jesse: I do actually need to clean out my keyboard…
Ian: Disgusting heathen.
Jesse: At least I’m capable of sustaining myself.
What is one item of clothing your boyfriend can’t live without?
Ian: The limited edition Fallen World Online T-shirt he got after another streamer snagged it at a con. It was before Jesse actually went to cons, so he was really excited to get it. Also, it’s a little too small so his shoulders look great in it.
Jesse: His thin sweats. For reasons. *sly grin*
What is your boyfriend’s favorite sleeping position? (I said sleeping, you dirty birds!)
Jesse: Ian sleeps on his stomach, and sometimes with his face smashed into his pillow like a cat. It freaks me out because I think he isn’t breathing, so I wait until I see his back rise and fall.
Ian: You’re so cute and paranoid and cute. We need to end this and get naked ASAP. But anyway, Jesse sprawls. He usually is half dead by the time I pry him off the computer, and then after some adult activities, he kind of dies. Sprawls on his back or on top of me, or when it’s cold he spoons. Basically, if I sleep like a cat then he sleeps like a puppy.
What’s your boyfriend’s biggest pet peeve?
Ian: Jesse hates for things to be messy. Like he can’t even sit down and focus on a game or a podcast if everything is everywhere. I’m generally a neat person, but when we first moved he was obsessed with unpacking right away.
Jesse: Ian hates when fan art or fandom is disrespected. And to be honest, before I met him, I never thought much about it, but now I’m ready to fight for him. Fan art and fanfiction is its own creative outlet, and the talent in fandoms is amazing.
What do you do for your boyfriend that he appreciates the most?
Jesse: This one is hard. I think it’s that I accept him. All of him, all parts. And don’t think Ian needs to be accepted by someone else, but I do think he likes to be accepted. And I love accepting him.
Ian: If I was Wrench from Watch Dogs 2, my eyes would be hearts, because yes. 🙂 But I agree this is a hard question. I’d like to think Jesse… appreciates the fact that I value him and that I’ve always… kind of really seen him and his potential? Even though I get annoying sometimes when I try to motivate him, I think he knows it’s because I want him to go all the way to awesome which is where he’s headed.
And now a general question — What’s your idea of the perfect date?
Jesse: I think we both like to stay in. The only time I ever went to clubs was when Beau dragged me. So my perfect date is getting pizza, drinking beer and beating Ian’s ass playing Mario Kart. Then doing other things with Ian’s ass later.
Ian: Same. Same. But with ass play in between rounds of gaming and eating. It’s a good thing that, besides school, we both pretty much work from home now. We spend a lot of time together, but we’re also like best friends soo… it’s a good thing. A really good thing.
My FallenCon agenda is simple: sit on a couple of panels and let people meet the real me. Jesse Garvy—mod of a famous Twitch channel and, if I ever come out of my shell, future vlogger. I definitely didn’t plan to sleep with a moody tattooed fan-artist, but he’s gorgeous and can’t keep his hands off me. There’s a first time for everything, and my first time with a guy turns out to be the hottest experience of my life.
But the next day, I find out my moody fan-artist is Ian Larsen AKA Cherry—someone I’ve known online for years. And he’d known exactly who I was while shoving me up against that wall. Before I figure out whether to be pissed or flattered, the con ends.
Now we’re back online, and he’s acting like nothing happened. But despite the distance between us, and the way he clings to the safety of his online persona, we made a real connection that night. I don’t plan to let him forget.
Cyberlove, book 3
260 e-book pages
1st person alternating
“Finish your other drink. I want to show you something.”
Jesse did as commanded, tilting his head back and wincing, but he swallowed it in one gulp. I leaned in closer, pressing my body to his broader more muscular one, and tangled my fingers with his. He was so warm, and he smelled so good that I wanted to keep him close.
He dropped the glass to the table with a comical grimace. Jesse wasn’t much of a drinker, but he was still sharp. Even so, I leaned in and whispered, “Are you sober?”
“Does slightly tipsy count as sober?”
“In my world, yes. But… are you sober enough to make a decision you won’t regret about
someone you know nothing about?”
Jesse sucked in another breath. I leaned back far enough to search his face and found parted lips still damp from the drink and dilating eyes. On a whim, I darted out my tongue to taste the gin and tonic on his lips. It tasted better.
“I won’t regret anything I decide,” he croaked.
My smile was slightly feral, but I couldn’t check my eagerness. This was happening. It was going to happen, anyway. And my heart was in my throat because I’d waited…dreamed…for years for this, and finally the moment was mine.
We speed-walked out of the party like a couple of over-excited kids, my hand sweaty as it gripped his. He didn’t pull away as our fingers twined together. I looked at him once to see he couldn’t take his eyes off me.
Fuck. I couldn’t believe this was happening.
FallenCon had completely taken over the convention center. There were cosplayers everywhere, people with badges, and drunk folks spilling out from the party. The entire place seemed like a party, and this was usually the moment that I loved the most. When everyone dropped their insecurities and their rivalries and online dramas, and we all had fun. Lost ourselves in a moment that would forever remain in our minds as the one time we truly enjoyed being out with others.
But my brain was a mantra of fuck other people, must have Jesse. I dragged him down a hallway, opened the first conference room door I saw, and was relieved to find the lights dimmed and no one inside.
I had him up against the wall before he could ask the question. Those explosive blue eyes widened, but he didn’t shy away. And he didn’t hold up his hands in typical over-the-top adorkable Garvy fashion, a please wait sign, when I plastered myself against him. His body was harder than I’d imagined, the bumps and ridges of muscle causing my pulse to race faster.
“I hope you don’t regret this tomorrow,” I murmured.
He shook his head. “Never.”
I wasn’t so sure, but I drew him in for a kiss. That first taste had been nothing compared to his mouth slanting open for me, immediately inviting my tongue. I gave it to him with sweeping glides, fucking his mouth with it, and drinking every delightful little sound he made.
It was Jesse’s first time kissing a guy, and I knew I should be making it sweet or gentle. Probationary, even. But I couldn’t. I ravaged him until we were clutching each other in the kind of raw make-out that belonged in the back of a pickup truck after a night of drunken tailgating, not in this haven for gamers and nerds.
We were grinding on each other, and I was too dazed to know when it had happened. All I knew was that the heaviness pressing against my own erection was causing my knees to weaken.
My moans filled every corner of the room, but I didn’t care if I seemed desperate or slutty. That he didn’t understand why a kiss was causing me to tremble with need. He couldn’t know that I’d imagined this so often, that I’d drawn it, that I’d wished for it. And he couldn’t have known that sliding his hand into my hair and holding me harder against him would unleash the part of me that wanted nothing more than to drop to my knees.
Other Books in the Series:
Titles link to BackPorchReader reviews.
About the Authors:
Megan Erickson is a USA Today bestselling author of romance that sizzles. Her books have a touch of nerd, a dash of humor, and always have a happily ever after. A former journalist, she switched to fiction when she decided she likes writing her own endings better.
She lives in Pennsylvania with her very own nerdy husband and two kids. Although rather fun-sized, she’s been told she has a full-sized personality. When Megan isn’t writing, she’s either lounging with her two cats named after John Hughes characters or… thinking about writing.
Santino Hassell was raised by a conservative family, but he was anything but traditional. He grew up to be a smart-mouthed, school cutting grunge kid, then a transient twenty-something, and eventually transformed into an unlikely romance author.
Santino writes queer romance that is heavily influenced by the gritty, urban landscape of New York City, his belief that human relationships are complex and flawed, and his own life experiences.
Click for your chance to win a signed set of the Cyberlove series – can only be shipped in the U.S.
And second place is a $10 Amazon Gift Card – Can be international Winner.