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The Northstar by Elle Keaton

The Northstar: A Christmas Novella (Accidental Roots)

Author: Elle Keaton

Genre: Gay Romance

Pairing: Holiday

Release Date: 12/7/18



“John was back on his knees—a position he historically enjoyed, but not in this scenario, checking under Dumpsters in foul weather. An unfamiliar voice startled him from his brooding. The sound came from the other side of the container, near the alley door John had left propped open. Focused as he was on searching for the kitten John hadn’t heard any approaching footsteps.

Dammit, he’d hoped the kitten would come inside on its own a human person was more than he wanted to deal with. Without the marquee turned on it seemed pretty obvious, to John at least, that the theater was closed, and why would anyone but him be back here in the alley? A chill ran down his spine. Was he about to get jumped? A bit hysterically, he wondered if his boxers were clean like his mother had always warned him they should be, just in case. But what hoodlum would call out a hello first? He was such an idiot.

After unsuccessfully searching the hallway and places the kitten could have gotten to inside, he’d come back outside to look more diligently, thinking he couldn’t see it because it was hiding under the other side of the container or it had found a box or something.

“Hello?” the voice repeated coming closer. “Are you all right then?”

A distinctly English accent, asking if he was okay—so he wasn’t about to be mugged and left for dead in a dark alley.

Carefully, John stood back from the trash container and turned to look over the top of it. It proved impossible for him not to stare at the handsome man waiting where he shouldn’t be. And, thankfully, he remembered taking a shower before leaving the house and putting on entirely clean clothing, including underwear, so he was good.

The stranger was backlit by security lights mounted on the opposite building, and John was standing a few feet away from him, but a trick of the light meant John could see his features clear as a sunny day. If he hadn’t been recovering from a terrible breakup and off men almost entirely, he might have thought an angel had decided John deserved a gift.

“Is there something you need?” he asked, attempting to shove aside his immediate attraction to the dark-haired man standing in his alley.

The man contemplated John for a moment before replying, “No, I think I’ve found it. I may have something of yours, however.”

Lord save him, the man had a smooth, deep voice and an English accent.”


“Lips softer than he’d imagined pressed against his own. It had been so long since he’d been kissed that John had forgotten how much he enjoyed it, how much he craved the sensual touch of another man. The errant thought Not just any man: this man crossed his mind, but he shook it off.

Chance deepened the kiss and put a hand on John’s waist, pulling him closer. They each had a day’s growth of whiskers, and they caught against each other, tangling suggestively before loosening and releasing as they kissed. For a moment, John forgot everything and let himself enjoy the contact.

A knock followed by the front doors rattling brought him to his senses. John jerked away, shocked he’d allowed a complete stranger to kiss him, this compelling complete stranger. And not just kiss him, but kiss him well enough that he’d momentarily forgotten his own name. He discreetly wiped his mouth, pretending to himself his fingertips didn’t linger against his lips longer than necessary.”

““Well?” he asked. His voice cracked like a thirteen-year-old boy’s, and he cleared his throat, trying to hide his sudden nerves.

“I think you should taste it.”

“Oh.” Disappointment shot though him. It was that bad? Normally he was pretty good at making espresso at home. He reached for the cup.

“No, here.”

John was confused. He glanced over at Chance, who was abruptly right next to him. When had he moved from the barstool? The only thing there was the sleeping kitten. Next thing John knew, he was tasting the bittersweet coffee on Chance’s lips, from Chance’s mouth. And holy fuck, Batman, it was hot. Without a doubt it was the most carnal espresso John had ever tasted.

Neither of them had shaved or showered yet that morning. Aside from the earthy flavor of the coffee, John tasted Chance himself, his very essence. Indescribable yet immediately addicting: a human opiate.”

About Elle:

Hi there, I’m Elle Keaton and I hail from the northwet (hahaha) corner of the US where we are known for rain, rain and more rain. I write the Accidental Roots series, set here in the Pacific Northwest featuring hot mm romance and the guarantee of a happy ending for my men. They start out broken, and maybe they end up that way too, but they always find the other half of their hearts.

I started writing way back when but only began publishing about two years ago and now have seven (almost eight) books out. Each features a couple in my little universe, sometimes there is added mystery and suspense.

Currently, I am working on the ninth in the series as well as a mm paranormal romance. I’m dabbling with an m/f set in the same universe as Accidental Roots, featuring a character who has been around from the beginning who really needs her own HEA. Feel free to email me with questions about the series or my writing

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