Hiya guys! We have B.A. Tortuga popping in today with her upcoming re-release Seashores of Old Mexico, we have a brilliant guest post from B.A. and a great excerpt, so check out the post and enjoy! ❤ ~Pixie~
Seashores of Old Mexico
After a bar fight gone horribly wrong, Clint is on the run, tired, hungry, and desperate to get out of Texas and across the border as fast as he can. But more than anything, he needs a place to relax and feel safe—at least for a little while. Searching for work, he stumbles into a cantina on the beach and runs into its owner. Jack might be a little older and a little worldlier, but the two men have enough in common to form a fast friendship that soon spills over into the bedroom.
But Clint isn’t the only who’s done things he isn’t proud of, things he’d rather keep hidden. Both of them have to be ready to drop everything and run if the past gets too close, and that’s no foundation for a relationship—especially since the truth always comes out eventually.
First Edition published by Torquere Press, 2007.
Hey y’all! I’m BA Tortuga, resident redneck and lover of all things cowboy.
Have I ever told y’all about meeting Willie Nelson?
I used to work at the state library in Austin, which is smack dab in the center of downtown next to the capitol building. I had a decent job – I was a graphic designer and illustrator down there and we had a great group of gals in the office.
Twice a week we ordered lunch and one of us fetched it. This particular day we’d ordered shawarmas (OMG the goodness…) and it was my turn, so off I went.
They were always shooting a movie or a new clip or something, so I didn’t even blink at all the signs and ropes and shit. If I came back without lunch, those girls would eat me.
I slipped into the restaurant, got our order, and headed back up Congress and all of the sudden a horse leaned over one of the ropes, nudging my lunch.
I reached up to grab his halter, and who looked down at me?
Mr. Willie Nelson.
Now, I did not pee my pants or drop the food. I did make little girl squeaky noises.
I did gush like any red blooded, musical Texan would.
Because WILLIE NELSON ON A HORSE.
I have to tell you, Willie was incredibly gracious. He smiled at me, chatted a second, and stopped his horse from eating my lunch.
I didn’t ask for an autograph. I did shake the redheaded stranger’s hand before he went on to filming his video.
Why did I tell you this when I’m supposed to be promoting a book?
Ah. You see, Merle Haggard wrote this little song called The Seashores of Old Mexico. Hank Snow sang it in 1971, the Hag and Willie sang it in 1987. King George covered it in 2005. It inspired this little story, although I’m not sure my version and theirs ends the same…
Much love, y’all.
OKAY. OKAY. Okay.
He was cool.
See him be cool.
Oh, fuck him raw, he was screwed and tattooed.
Except, not, because that dude at the tattoo parlor had great big gold shark teeth and shit and, hell.
Not even when he’d had a dime to his name, damn it.
Which he didn’t now, but Clint’d swept the parking lot of the little beach bar and gathered up enough pesos to get him a cerveza, maybe. Or some guacamole. Maybe he’d ask for a shift washing dishes for a little dinero.
He spent a second thinking of Momma’s cobbler and brisket on the grill. Potato salad in that big old yellow bowl and a glass plate of pickles. Damn, being in trouble with the law was hell.
The bar was pretty deserted inside, just a few old barflies scattered about, some gringo, some not. The place looked crazy as all get-out—all palm tree lights and alligator heads, one of the booths made out of the front end of an old Chevy truck. The guy behind the bar, though, he looked like home, with a deep tanned face and a straw Stetson, grinning and chatting with some old-timer.
He walked up slow and easy, trying not to look like a drifter living too close to the bone. He settled on a barstool, the seat tilting a little. Maybe he could afford two beers.
“Well, hey there, son. What can I get you?” The bartender came on down, smiling at him just the same as he had at the other guy, not a bit of the fake he’d get at the touristy places that he couldn’t afford anyway.
“Just a cold one, thanks. I ain’t picky.” He smiled back, nodded, keeping his hat pulled down just a little, more out of habit than need.
He got a look, not so much curious as knowing. “You look thirsty. It’s happy hour, son. The cheap draft is two for one.”
Oh, praise Jesus. “Looks like my luck’s holding today, then. What do I owe you?”
“Well, it’s a buck fifty, which I think is about sixteen pesos, give or take.” Bright brown eyes shone under that hat, not real dark, more gold. Those smile lines deepened. “But I’ll take what you can give and be happy.”
Sixteen. He dug out what he’d picked up and counted. Twenty. Okay. There was even a tip. “Here goes.”
Jesus. He was gonna have to drink slow.
“That’ll keep you for a bit, son. Here, have some pretzels.” Grinning, the guy slid a whole basket of goodies down to him.
“Thanks.” He tried to eat slow, knowing he’d end up tossing if he dumped a bunch of food in him. Still, the beer was gonna hit him like a ton of bricks if he didn’t get something in him.
Lord have mercy, he was tired. It’d been three weeks that he’d been running. Three weeks after a fight had gone from one thing to another, and one man’d ended up dead and another one saying it was him that did the doing, whether or not it was true.
The bruises were all faded now, though, and the truck had been dumped in McAllen for $230, and he was….
“Here’s your beer, son. You want some water too? I ain’t gonna charge you for bottled, bad as the local stuff is.”
It was almost too much, that friendly voice.
“Yeah? That’d be a kindness. Thank you kindly.” He drank most of that first one in a few gulps, the beer hitting his stomach with a splash.
A bottle of water landed next to his mostly empty glass. “I’ll get you the next when you’ve had some water.”
The guy moved off, giving him a minute to sit and blink. He finished the pretzels and the water and the beer, eyes on his hands there on the bar. They looked like his daddy’s, sorta. Couple of scars, couple of rope marks, veins on the back sticking up a little. Working man’s hands. A good man’s hands. Shit, he sure hoped he could call himself a good man when all this happy crap was said and done. Clint rolled his eyes at himself. Quit all that shit, man. You get your other beer and move on and find a place to nap where you won’t get eat up.
“Here you go.” His second beer joined the other glass on the bar. “You look like you got the weight of the world on your shoulders.”
“Thank you, sir. Just been a long day or three.” He’d get it figured. He didn’t just fall off the turnip truck. Although that last hombre that gave him a ride was hauling grapefruits.
“I’ve had a few of those myself.” That wink was pure-D wicked, the guy laughing a little. “Well, if you need anything else, holler, all right?”
“You’ve been real nice. I….” He rubbed the back of his neck once. “I don’t reckon you know any place that needs an evening of work? I can do near anything.”
“Sure. I could use someone to haul boxes tonight when my beer delivery comes. If you don’t mind hauling, I can pay you some.”
“I can do that.” Shit, yeah. He tried not to sound too eager, but damn. Hauling boxes was better than anything, and the guy seemed decent enough. He held one hand out, keeping his arms close to his chest in case he stank. “I’m Clint. Pleased.”
“Jack. Pleased right back. You just down from the States, son?” They shook, good and firm, Jack looking him straight in the eye. Approving of him.
“Yeah. I was….” He bit his bottom lip. Hush now. “I’m traveling some. Seeing stuff.”
“Sure.” The easy way Jack nodded made him think maybe the man knew something about seeing stuff, like it or no. “Well, if you want to hang around, that’s fine. Or I got a cot in the back room….”
“I….” He drank most of his second beer before he finished answering. “I wouldn’t mind a nap before you put me to work.”
Then he could keep walking through the night, not have to worry on finding somewhere else until tomorrow night.
“Well, there you go. Come on, son.” The drop counter between the wall and the bar rose under Jack’s hand, and the guy led him back to a little office and storage room. “I got a wee bath if you want to wash up, and the cot’s just there. You go to it, because I’ll work your heinie off come dark.”
“I appreciate it, man. I ain’t scared of working.” Go away now, because he was so fucking tired he could just fucking lose it, and he didn’t want to. He’d been holding his shit together real good.
“You need me, you holler.” And Jack was gone, just like the man had heard him. Or, you know, had a bar to run.
Clint managed to wash his hands and his underarms and his face and all and say a quick prayer for his folks before his body gave out, hands holding his hat safe, boots resting there on the ground, in case he needed to wake up running.
Texan to the bone and an unrepentant Daddy’s Girl, BA Tortuga spends her days with her basset hounds and her beloved wife, texting her sisters, and eating Mexican food. When she’s not doing that, she’s writing. She spends her days off watching rodeo, knitting and surfing Pinterest in the name of research. BA’s personal saviors include her wife, Julia Talbot, her best friend, Sean Michael, and coffee. Lots of coffee. Really good coffee.
Having written everything from fist-fighting rednecks to hard-core cowboys to werewolves, BA does her damnedest to tell the stories of her heart, which was raised in Northeast Texas, but has heard the call of the high desert and lives in the Sandias. With books ranging from hard-hitting GLBT romance, to fiery menages, to the most traditional of love stories, BA refuses to be pigeon-holed by anyone but the voices in her head.
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