Teach Me Tonight by Natasha Washington
Series: LA Teachers Series #1
Release Date: October 6, 2020
Subgenre: Contemporary M/M Romance
Synopsis for Teach Me Tonight:
Nic Moretti teaches kindergarten at Bridges Elementary, a private school in LA’s Santa Monica Mountains. He likes being a teacher, but he misses playing and writing music. Since he basically gave up on pursuing music as a career a year ago, he hasn’t been able to write anything decent, and it’s driving him crazy. Add to that the pressure he’s getting from his family and friends to find someone to date, and Nic’s feeling pretty frustrated.
Kim Junseo owns two Korean fusion restaurant he built from the ground up, and he keeps himself busy running it and taking care of his 5-year-old daughter, Hee-Young. Though on the surface he seems successful and happy, he’s also lonely – and terrified of relationships, since his marriage to his ex-husband Noah ended in disaster three years ago.
When Junseo comes to Nic’s classroom to throw Hee-Young a birthday party, sparks fly. Nic thinks Junseo is impossibly handsome, funny and sweet. Junseo’s drawn to Nic’s goofy, gentle spirit and thinks he’s beautiful. Junseo doesn’t even think twice about volunteering to teach Nic’s class about food and cooking. One thing leads to another, and soon they’re bonding over kimchi fried rice at Junseo’s restaurant and salami and cheese sandwiches at the Getty Villa as the heat builds between them.
Nic can feel himself opening up to Junseo, even telling him about his abusive father, a part of his past that he never shares with anyone. Nic’s writing music again, and Junseo is finally letting down his guard. Then Junseo’s abusive ex-husband Noah re-appears in his life, claiming good intentions, but Nic’s afraid that Noah’s going to try to worm his way back into Junseo’s life and hurt him. Junseo, struggling to deal with old demons he
thought he’d buried, pushes Nic away. He doesn’t like anyone telling him how to live his life, whether it’s Noah or Nic.
Was it physically possible for someone to be as beautiful as Junseo was? If Nic had known he was going to be graced by the presence of a male model holding a tray of meticulously prepared bite-sized snacks and another tray of cupcakes, he might have tried to at least be clean. Instead he’d been paint-splattered, sweaty, and he was pretty sure Aiden had wiped his nose on his sleeve right before Junseo had come in. The little bastard.
God. Junseo was…wow. Those elegantly shaped dark eyes, those soft lips, that sharp jawline, his black hair falling across his forehead, emphasizing his high cheekbones…Nic needed to stop. He was still at work. This was terrible.
“Probably good to get everyone cleaned up before anyone has any food,” Mr. Moretti told him, wiping his own hands on his jeans, which were as hopelessly stained as his shirt. “I’m so sorry, I didn’t even introduce myself. Hello, Mr. Kim. I’m—”
“Mr. Nic, this is Mr. Nic!” Hee-Young exclaimed. “The best teacher in the whole entire world.”
Nic turned a very attractive shade of pink and held out his hand. His grip was strong, his fingers slightly rough with callouses.
“You can call me Junseo.”
“Everyone, Hee-Young’s father has brought some snacks for us, but you can’t have snacks until you have clean hands. Let’s do this quietly and—”
There was an explosion of noise as fourteen kindergartners leapt out of their seats and made a mad dash for the sinks. Nic caught one boy by his collar when he went to press his red and green-streaked palms into a girl’s back, and two boys nearly went down in a pile after tripping over each other. There was paint literally everywhere. Nic looked like he regretted all of his life choices.
“The kids are a lot, huh,” Junseo said.
“I am supposed to be the captain of this vessel, but I am constantly reminded I’m just a passenger,” Nic said, mournfully, and Junseo laughed.
But ten minutes later, all of the students had miraculously clean hands, and Junseo was handing out snacks on little silver plates. While all of the students were eating, he uncovered the cupcake tray. At the center was a special pink one decorated with a sword-wielding little girl. He was proud of it – he wasn’t really that good at icing, but he’d gotten his pastry chef to help teach him how to do it, and it looked pretty professional.
“Where did you get these?” Nic asked. “They’re beautiful.”
“Oh,” Junseo said, and he felt his cheeks heat. “I made them. I—I’m a chef. I mean, I don’t usually make cupcakes. Just for special occasions. Normally, though, I own a Korean restaurant. Um – two restaurants, actually.”
“That’s…amazing,” Nic said. He cleared his throat. “That’s so cool.”
Junseo placed a candle in the cupcake’s shimmery frosting and lit it, and when he put it in front of Hee-Young, her face brightened so she looked like a small, exuberant sun.
“Appa, is it Mulan?”
“It is, my warrior princess,” Junseo said, and he felt like his heart was going to melt out of his ears.
About the author:
Natasha Washington lives in Philadelphia, where she writes queer love stories in both YA (as Sonia Belasco) and romance. When not writing, she is likely cooking, taking long, meandering walks, or listening to dance music or 90s hip-hop.
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