Wednesday’s Work in Progress



It’s been a while since I’ve posted a WiP excerpt. I thought I’d do one with the newest book I’m working on. I’m really enjoying it…and hopefully you will when you get a chance to read it. I don’t have a release date or anything for it yet. It’s not contracted or anything, but it’s the sequel to Mountains to Climb. So you’ll get to see how Jensen and Toby are doing, now that Jensen has returned and Toby has welcomed him back.

This book is titled Climbing the Savage Mountain (K2 is nicknamed the Savage Mountain and Jensen climbs it in the story).

Climbing the Savage Mountain copyright c. 2014 T.A. Chase


“Why Everest?” Toby asked. “Whenever I hear people talk about something on their bucket list—or the ultimate dream—a lot of them say climbing Everest. What makes Everest such a goal?”

Jensen scrubbed his hand over his hair as he tried to think about how to explain how he felt whenever he thought about Everest. “I don’t know about other people, though for most of them, Everest might seem like the biggest insurmountable obstacle they can think of. And to be able to say they got to the summit ends up putting them in a rare class of people who have faced a challenge and defeated it.”

Toby nodded. “I guess that makes sense, but why do you want to climb it? I know that it’s only number two on your list. K2 is the one you really want to conquer. Why not focus on that one instead of risking everything on Everest?”

Jensen met Toby’s gaze and said, “If I can summit Everest, I have no doubt that I’ll get to the summit of K2.”

“So Everest is just a litmus test as to your ability to climb big mountains? What happens if you end up getting injured while trying it? Will that convince you that you can’t do it or will it strengthen your resolve to try again?” Toby clenched his hands.

He winced at the pressure Toby was exerting on his fingers. Jensen cupped Toby’s face in his free hand.

“Nothing will happen to me on this trip. I promise.”

Toby jerked away from him then shot to his feet. He started pacing while Jensen watched. “Don’t promise me something like that, Jensen. You’re a good climber. I know that. Hell, Cat and Jigger tell me that all the time. You’re a natural. One of the best they’ve seen in years. I know that means jack shit when you’re up on that God forsaken piece of rock and a storm rolls.”

Jensen opened his mouth then snapped it shut when Toby whirled on him. He saw the fear in Toby’s eyes and he went to him, wrapping his arms around his lover to hold him close. He pressed his mouth to Toby’s ear and whispered, “I promise to never make light of your fears. I’m sorry. I guess I didn’t realize how scared you were about me going.”

“It’s not just Everest, Jensen,” Toby confessed. “It’s every time you walk out that door on a trip. I’m left here, wondering if you’re going to come home. So far you’ve done it, but what if something keeps you from coming back to me?”

As much as he wanted to say that the only way he wouldn’t be coming back to Toby was if he were dead, Jensen knew it wasn’t the right thing to say. It certainly wouldn’t reassure Toby at all.

“I know you’re afraid I’ll decide to keep wandering.” He stepped back to stare down at Toby. “I can make you this vow, Toby, and this one I do have control over. I will always come back to you. I wasn’t strong enough to face you when I ran away before. I didn’t trust in how much you cared for me. We both know I should’ve come to you and tell you about my addictions and my problems.”

“Damn straight you should’ve. How can I help you when I don’t know what’s wrong?” Toby encircled Jensen’s waist, resting his head on Jensen’s chest.

Jensen kissed the top of Toby’s head. “Do you really feel like talking about my trip right now? Why don’t we go for a run then we get back, we can take a shower?”

Tension eased from Toby’s shoulders and Jensen realized it was just a reprieve from the complications of him going away. Yet he didn’t want to talk about it right then. He wanted to spend time with the man he loved and soak up all the good times, so he had something to cling to when he was on the side of Everest, praying to God to keep him safe.

One Response “Wednesday’s Work in Progress”

  1. great excerpt – can’t wait to read this 🙂

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