A/N: Ahhh! I'M SO EXCITED! Four people I love very much have already or are getting ready to celebrate birthdays! I'm so lucky to have these girls in my life, and so fail because I couldn't get anything written in time for the first birthday. I swear I started thinking about this at the end of JULY! So fail.
Anyway, I love these girls for many, many reasons, but one of the things we flail over most together is boys who love boys. So I hope they enjoy this... I tried to include special things for each of them!
This first chapter is for Jules! Everyone go flail on her wall for her birthday today! She's one of the sweetest women I know , and she has a huge heart. I'm so lucky to call her a friend. LOVE YOU!
A Cowboy in Paris
The bell above the door jingled, but Edward didn't look up from shelving books as he called out, "Bonjour! Un moment, s'il vous plait!"
"No rush. I'm just browsing," a deep, silky voice shouted back. Edward smiled when he heard the American drawl and licked his lips. Nothing like a little tourist eye candy to brighten his day! He slid the last book into place and quickly made his way to the front of his store.
Rounding the corner, Edward got his first glimpse of tall, dark, and dreamy. His new customer stood just a hair shorter than Edward and made Edward's eyebrows climb as he took in the man's bright green eyes and the square jaw covered in a day's worth of scruff. Yum!
"Can I help you find something?" Edward asked, turning on his most flirtatious smile as the man eyed Edward from the bottom of his skinny jeans all the way up to his own green eyes, complete with black eyeliner and a light layer of smoky grey eyeshadow.
"Oh, thank goodness you speak English. I just popped in to get out of the rain, to be honest. I'm actually a little lost."
"And where are you trying to be?"
"Nowhere in particular, I guess," the man shrugged. "I thought I'd find one of those laid-back Parisian cafes you always hear about, but I'm beginning to think they don't actually exist!"
"Ah, I love my city, but it's not the quaint little town they paint in so many of these," Edward said as he held up a book. "You are here for business or pleasure?"
The man's eyes crinkled and a slow smile spread over his handsome face. "Oh, I'm here for pleasure. Got my heart broken a few months ago and felt like a trip to Paris was just the ticket to make it all better."
Edward didn't miss the second perusal his not-really-a-customer gave him. He had a feeling his already great day was about to get a lot more fabulous. "And how is that working out for you?"
"Actually, it's just taken a turn for the better … "
"Edward," he supplied when the other main trailed off, fishing for his name.
"Nice to meet you. Name's Garrett." A slow grin spread across his face as he offered his hand. Edward's heart sped up as he took Garrett's hand in his own, more than charmed by Garrett's smile. And what the hell was going on with his chest? He could hardly catch his breath when Garrett's finger trailed lightly along his wrist as they shook hands.
"So," Garrett continued, interrupting Edward's blank stare, "you work in a real, live bookstore, huh? Don't see too many of these in the States anymore-outside of Barnes and Noble that is-what with everyone using e-readers nowadays."
Edward's back straightened and he narrowed his eyes at the American. "If you intend on visiting Paris for any length of time, mon cher, you should know there are two things the French do not throw out, bread and books."
"'S'that so?" Garrett grinned.
"Oui, the writer is held in great esteem in France. We view them as the most important creator, much as the Italians do with the artist. Otherwise, I would not have invested in owning my own bookstore."
Garrett took a step closer, his eyes lighting up and not looking one bit remorseful. "Well, don't I feel like a horse's ass?"
Edward's eyes widened before he doubled over in laughter. "You Americans actually use that phrase?"
When Edward righted himself, Garrett was still smiling at him, amusement written all over his face. "Probably not most Americans, but cowboys sure as hell do."
Oh là là! An actual cowboy walked into his store! "You're kidding me! You're a cowboy? Where's your hat? And vest! And boots?" The words were tumbling out of Edward's mouth before he could stop them, not that he would've if he could've. It was a trait that few appreciated and had gotten him in more trouble than he cared to remember, but it didn't seem to bother his American.
Garrett nodded once, the smile never leaving his handsome face. "Yes, sir. Born and bred in Texas. And my hat and boots are back in my room. Found out on my first day they don't exactly help me fit in around here. I get enough looks at home for being a gay cowboy. Didn't really want the extra attention for being different on vacation, too."
Edward frowned. Given his flamboyant nature, he was no stranger to condescending looks from passersby,and while he was no expert on American culture, he knew enough to understand that Garrett probably had much less support than Edward did. Still, he hated the thought of anyone hiding who he was just to please other people.
"Non! I can guarantee it's not the hat, beau gosse. You must wear it for me. And the boots! Or better yet, I will wear the hat for you!" Edward winked and offered his most seductive smile.
Garrett's smile turned almost shy. "I think we might just be able to work that out. Wanna join me for dinner in one of these not-so-quaint cafés first?"
It was all Edward could do to keep from jumping on the man. Edward had practically asked Garrett if he could try on his cowboy hat while he rode him reverse cowboy style, yet Garrett still seemed uncertain whether or not Edward was interested. He grabbed his cowboy by the hand and tugged until Garrett's eyes met his own. "Oui. I cannot think of a better way to spend my evening."
A/N: See you guys tomorrow! (At which point all of the French in this may be updated once a certain French girl finds out about this!)