Take A Gamble by N.Wood
ON SALE Nov 12, 2013
Each Friday night, a mysterious man enters Blackjack’s Bar, orders the same drink, and sits in the same seat in the furthest corner. His presence is a welcome sight for Isaac Anderson, a regular bartender at Blackjack's. There's just something mysterious and intriguing about Caleb Miller that Isaac can’t ignore. Perhaps it's his pale and sickly appearance, or the smart way in which he dresses. Isaac just can’t put his finger on what makes this man so different. Another thing he can’t do is stop staring at this fascinating, special person. Encouraged to take a gamble and to get to know this quiet stranger, Isaac invites Caleb to watch a rock band with him. All seems to be well, until Caleb suddenly makes a mad dash for the door.
Caleb doesn’t know what to think when Isaac Anderson pursues him that night. A lifetime of rejection has taught him to expect the worst, but the attractive and warm bartender’s response to him confuses him. Isaac sees him at his worst, and Caleb is prepared to protect himself from judgment and heartache. He is shocked when he is instead given kindness and compassion. As Isaac continues to reach out to him, Caleb struggles with the choice to trust the new man in his life. Even if Isaac wants to build a relationship with Caleb, there are other people in their lives who would be happier if they stayed apart. And even if he allows Isaac into his heart, it still may not be enough for Caleb to learn to accept himself.
Anger, judgment, distrust, and violence all threaten Isaac and Caleb’s newfound love. Their relationship faces too many challenges for either man to overcome on his own. Will taking a gamble pay off, or do they both stand to lose everything?
As something a little different, and hopefully fun for all of you readers, Ms. Wood arranged for Caleb and Isaac (her main characters from Take a Gamble) to answer my interview questions so we could get a little more insight into them. Enjoy!
If I gave you an elephant where would you hide it?
Isaac: In my pocket next to another big trunk (wink)
Caleb: (Laughs) Come on, Isaac, be serious.
Isaac: I am being serious. See? This is my serious face.
Caleb: If I had an elephant, I'd donate it to Newquay Zoo. They don't have an elephant there.
Isaac: Maybe I could teach it how to surf. I'd make a fortune!
What is your favorite color of socks to wear?
Caleb: It varies. I guess whatever colour will match my shirt.
Isaac: I prefer you bare foot, though.
Caleb: I know you do, but the question is about socks.
Isaac: Oh, right. Uh, I guess just plain black for me.
Do you wear boxers or briefs?
Caleb: Yes, I know. You prefer me to be bare butt, too. I wear briefs.
Isaac: Me too.
If you were a cookie, which would you be?
Caleb: I'm not much of a cookie eater. Could I be a Walnut Whip, instead?
Isaac: What's a Walnut Whip?
Caleb: It's a walnut surrounded by marshmallow and covered in chocolate. They're really nice.
Isaac: Oh! In that case, I want to be a Walnut Whip too! We can have fun licking each other out!
Caleb: Will you behave?
Name one actor/actress you would love to get naughty with?
(Glances to each other)
Isaac: You go first.
Caleb: No, you.
Isaac: (Thinks for a moment) Hmm, maybe Huge Jackman.
Isaac: Have you seen him in leather trousers?
Caleb: (Rolls his eyes) No, I haven't. I quite liked that Twilight guy.
Isaac: The Edward dude?
Caleb: Ew, hell no. The other one . . . the doctor.
Isaac: You have a thing for doctors?
Caleb: Well, I see enough of them, don't I?
Do you suffer from sleepwalking?
Isaac: Nope, but Cal talks in his sleep sometimes.
Caleb: Yeah, thanks for that. (Folds his arms)
What is your favorite daily wear attire?
Caleb: (Gestures to his current attire) A full three-piece suit. I like to look my best, especially while I'm at work.
Isaac: You look your best no matter what you wear. I like when you dress casual from time to time.
Caleb: I like when you do too, though it helps that Tracy dresses you. She told me about your attempts at dressing up to be more like me.
Isaac: (Huffs) She's such a traitor!
Women or Cars?
(Exchanges a glance)
Isaac / Caleb: Cars!
Do you like dogs or cats?
Isaac: (Looks to Caleb) You'd better say 'cats'.
Caleb: Ooh, that's a tough one. Dogs or cats . . .
Isaac: If you say 'dogs', I'm going to set Pitch on you.
Caleb: D . . . okay, cats.
What's your bad quality?
Caleb: My health.
Isaac: Health isn't a quality. Besides, there's nothing wrong with you.
Caleb: (Raises an eyebrow)
Isaac: If you say the 'd' words, I'm going to have to slap you.
Caleb: I wasn't going to say the 'd' word.
Isaac: Well, your health isn't a bad quality.
Caleb: Then what is my bad quality?
Isaac: (Thinks a moment) The fact that you think it's a bad quality.
Caleb: Fine. You don't have any bad qualities either. You're perfect in every way.
If you try to fail, and succeed, which have you done?
Isaac: Succeeded in failing! Boo-ya!
Caleb: (Groans) Don't say boo-ya. Why would somebody try to fail?
Isaac: Good point.
Do you know how to drop an egg onto a concrete floor without cracking it?
Isaac: I guess you could bubble wrap it, or put it in a box so it's protected.
Caleb: That's seriously your answer?
Isaac: Yeah. She didn't say that we can't wrap it up. Oh! We could put it inside a bag of cotton wool!
Caleb: (Rolls eyes) It's simple. You hard boil it.
Isaac: But the shell would still crack and she said 'without cracking it'.
Caleb: Hard boil it and varnish the shell so it won't crack.
Why isn't the number 11 pronounced as onety one?
Caleb: Who wrote these questions?
Isaac: I don't know, but I wanty-one! (Waggles eyebrows)
Caleb: Ha . . . ha . . . ha.
What kind of music do you like?
Caleb: Oh, a question for me! I like all sorts of music, but especially rock and jazz.
Isaac: Not glamrock, though.
Caleb: No, definitely not glamrock.
Isaac: This is a 'no spandex' zone.
Isaac: You should hear Cal play. He's great with a guitar.
Which is your favorite genre of movies?
Isaac: Oh, I like a bit of everything. Action is great. I like horror too.
Caleb: I don't really watch movies. I have to be careful with them.
Isaac: Romantic comedies are good for you, Cal. No need to look away with those ones.
Caleb: Yeah, I guess I like comedies.
Which is the best vacation you've ever had?
Caleb: She means 'holiday'.
Isaac: Oh, right. Well I once went on holiday to Spain with a set of foster parents. That was okay, until they revealed they only took me there to lessen the blow that they weren't going to adopt me.
Caleb: They really did that? That's awful.
Isaac: Yeah, the holiday sucked after that.
If given complete freedom to start afresh, what profession would you choose and why?
Caleb: I wouldn't change what I already do. I love being a music teacher.
Isaac: And I love working at Blackjack's, so I wouldn't change either.
What is the craziest thing you've ever done?
Isaac: (Grins) Oh, lots of things. I think the craziest thing Cal has ever done was agreeing on the first date with me. Dude, you knew it would make you sick and you came anyway.
Caleb: Yeah, well, I already explained myself for that. Anyway, it's not as bad as our second first date when you knew you'd freak out, but you took me to Newquay anyway.
Isaac: That was a fun day, though.
Which is your most favorite place in this earth?
(Glances to each other with grins)
Isaac / Caleb: Land's End!
Great job, guys, but that's about all the time we have, thanks so much for coming!
Caleb: Thank you for having us.
Isaac: Yeah, it was great fun! Bye!
N. Wood is a budding young author living in Cornwall, United Kingdom. She developed an interest in writing when her poetry was first published at the age of nine. Since then, she has moved onto writing both short stories and novels focusing on gay romantic themes.
Also by N. Wood:
“Woodshed Wishes,” Fall Fires Anthology
Find her here:
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