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Finding Absolution

Finding AbsolutionPride Publishing
ISBN ebook: 978-1-78184-413-7
Genre: Gay MM/ Contemporary
Series: Book Twenty Nine in the Cattle Valley series.
Release Date: August 2013

Read an Excerpt | Order eBook at Pride Publishing

How can two men find common ground when one makes a living in the soil and the other in the surf?

Pressured by his friends, Kai and Quade, Van Duggins makes the trip from Oahu to Wyoming for the annual Cattle Valley Days celebration. Used to surfing every day, Van expects to be bored out of his mind without an ocean in sight. What he didn’t expect was to meet a man who would change his life forever.

Raised by his grandparents, Jon Porter returned home after college to help his ailing grandpa take care of the family farm. He doesn’t begrudge giving up his chosen career to help the man who raised him, but his situation has been hard on his love life.

For one week a year, Jon is able to break free of his responsibilities long enough to enjoy the Cattle Valley rodeo. It’s his chance to be the man he was born to be, and he refuses to waste a second of it. When trouble finds him on his first evening at the rodeo, a stranger with long dark hair and a devilish grin rescues him.

How can two men find common ground when one makes a living in the soil and the other in the surf?


A sense of pride filled Van Duggins as his student, Kai Hachiya, accepted his first place trophy and cheque. It was Kai’s third win in four surfing tournaments, and Van was beginning to think he was no longer needed.

“Did Kai talk to you about Wyoming?” Quade Madison, Kai’s partner, asked.

“He mentioned it.” Van glanced at Quade. He hated to admit it, but he’d grown to really like the guy, and Kai definitely surfed better with Quade around. Unfortunately, liking Quade and following him and Kai to Cattle Valley didn’t go hand in hand. Never in his life had he been landlocked. The mere thought of not being able to see the brilliant blue of the ocean made Van’s stomach turn. “Not my idea of a vacation,” he mumbled.

“Maybe not, but you won’t know until you try it,” Quade replied.

“I won’t be able to breathe,” Van countered.

“You don’t have to worry about that, they have air in Wyoming, too.” Quade laughed and slapped Van on the back. “It would mean a lot to Kai if you joined us.”

“Funny, Kai told me it would mean a lot to you.” Van smiled. “So what’s the real reason you want me to go to this festival in the middle of nowhere?”

Quade took off his hat and wiped the sweat from his forehead. “I’m proud of Cattle Valley. I guess I’d just like to share it with you.”

Van had prepared an excuse to get out of the planned vacation, but he couldn’t get the words out of his mouth. Quade had been nothing but supportive of Kai’s training and career, and had rarely asked for anything in exchange. “I’ll have to leave right after the carnival or whatever it is.”

Quade chuckled. “Don’t act so thrilled.” He bumped shoulders with Van. “You probably won’t admit it afterwards, but you’re going to love the rodeo.”

Van grunted in reply.

“I’m starving,” Kai announced as he finally joined them. “I’ve got an interview in an hour, but I thought we could get something to eat first.”

“You aced everyone,” Van congratulated Kai.

Kai grinned. “I almost clucked on that last wave, but I remembered what you taught me and hit the lip perfectly.”

There wasn’t much that he hadn’t taught Kai, and the kid never forgot a single lesson. Before long Van would become obsolete to the man he’d grown close to. However, there was still one thing the beach rat had refused to get through his thick skull. “Language,” he warned. How many times had he explained to Kai that he hated slang?

“Sorry.” Kai broke away from Quade and wrapped his arms around Van. “I couldn’t have won without you.”

Van hugged Kai back. They both knew the truth, but the words were nice to hear. “You’d better get something to eat while you can.” He released Kai and took a step back.

“Aren’t you coming with us?” Quade asked.

Van turned his attention to the ocean. “I think I’ll go home and catch some waves while I still can.” He winked at Kai. “Not many of those in Wyoming.”

Kai’s handsome face lit up like Van had just given him the world. “Really? You’re coming with us?”

“I’ve decided I can’t go to my grave without seeing a rodeo.” Van settled his sunglasses down over his eyes. “When do we leave?”

“Wednesday,” Kai replied. “I booked you a seat just in case.”

With a nod and a wave, Van walked to his Jeep. He untied the leather thong that held his shoulder-length hair at the nape of his neck and headed out of the parking lot. Driving along the coast with the ocean breeze in his face always made him feel free. He’d spent the first eight years of his life in a depressing apartment on Central Park West in Manhattan with a mother who had little use for him outside the money she received monthly from his father.

Van had grown up believing his dad was a rich son of a bitch who cared nothing for him. It wasn’t until his mother had been invited to Europe for the summer with her newest lover and had informed Van that he’d be shipped off to Oahu to stay with his father that he’d met the man for the first time.