Empty Net by Avon Gale, Exclusive Excerpt & Giveaway!

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Hi guys! We have Avon Gale stopping by today with her upcoming release Empty Net the fourth book in the Scoring Chances series. We have a fantastic exclusive excerpt and Avon is having a fabulous giveaway, so check out the post and click that giveaway link <3 ~Pixie~

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Empty Net

(Scoring Chances 04)

Avon Gale

Spartanburg Spitfires’ goalie and captain Isaac Drake ended last season with an unexpected trip to the playoffs. He’s found a home and family with his coach and mentor, Misha Samarin, and he’s looking forward to making a serious run for the Kelly Cup. But things take an interesting turn when Isaac’s archnemesis, Laurent St. Savoy, is traded to the Spitfires. After Laurent’s despicable behavior in the playoffs last year, Isaac wants nothing to do with him – no matter how gorgeous he is. But that changes when Isaac discovers the reason for Laurent’s attitude.

Laurent St. Savoy grew up the only son of a legendary NHL goalie in a household rife with abuse, constantly treated like a disappointment on and off the ice. When a desperate attempt to escape his father’s tyranny sends him to the Spitfires, the last thing Laurent wants is to make friends. But there’s something about Isaac Drake that he can’t resist, and Laurent has an opportunity to explore his sexuality for the first time, but he’s cracking under end-of-the season pressures. When facing the playoffs and a rivalry turned personal vendetta, Isaac’s not sure he’s enough to hold Laurent—or their relationship—together.

Release date: 2nd September 2016

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Exclusive Excerpt

“So,” Murph said immediately as Isaac grabbed a beer and flopped down on the sofa next to him. “Where are we going to hide the body?”

Isaac tried not to make a face at Hux’s beverage of choice, Natural Light. Ugh. That was another good thing about living with Coach Samarin. Isaac ate better food and drank better alcohol. “Dunno. But I can’t hit him. Promised Coach.”

“I told you nothing good would come from you living there,” Hux said. He was six foot-two and all muscles, and he got in a lot of fights on Isaac’s behalf on the ice. Off of it he was a sweetheart of a guy who liked to drink beer and read comic books. At the same time. There was a graphic novel on his lap. “Stupid asshole, St. Savoy. I can’t believe that jerk is a Spitfire.”

“What kind of a name is that, anyway?” Murph asked. Murph was a defenseman—and a good one—but if he’d ever read a book in his life that wasn’t about hockey, Isaac hadn’t seen it. He looked about as Irish as you’d expect from a guy named Shawn Murphy. He was as tall and broad as Hux, but without any tattoos. He said he was keeping his body a temple, but he was really just afraid of needles.

Sometimes Isaac wondered if Shawn and Matt were secretly having sex every time Isaac left their apartment. They probably weren’t. Neither of them had a problem with Isaac being gay, and Shawn had even kissed him once at a party to impress a girl, but they both seemed about as straight as they came. The kiss was the opposite of impressive, at least to Isaac, but the girl had liked it and was now Murph’s steady girlfriend.

Being gay had never bothered Isaac as much as it seemed to bother everyone else on his behalf. One of his favorite things about Hux and Murph was how they simply adjusted their chick talk to dick talk in order to make him feel involved in conversations. It was endearing, even if it was offensive to both genders.

“I think he’s French-Canadian,” Isaac said. “That’s why his name’s French… ish.”

“Fuck him,” Hux said gruffly. He pointed at Isaac with his beer. “Not literally, Drake. Got that?”

“Isaac wouldn’t fuck that guy,” Murph started, then stopped and scowled at Isaac. “I guess he’s probably your type, though, huh? ’Cause he’s pretty.”

Isaac couldn’t argue with that one, but he did take exception to the idea that he’d mess around with St. Dickhead. “Uh, no thanks. Remember how mad I got about the spitting?”

“Right. You want ’em to swallow.” Murph winked.

“Who doesn’t?” said Hux, and they all raised their cans of beer.

The banter was juvenile. But seeing as how Isaac’s parents had tossed him out of his house and thrown him to the proverbial wolves without any apparent remorse when he was seventeen, he couldn’t help but feel grateful that he’d ended up on a team with guys who wanted him to feel like he belonged.

“Wonder why he’s so pissed off about it?” Isaac said, catching a controller that Hux threw to him. It was always a toss-up between Grand Theft Auto and NHL video games, and they had picked the former.

“About spitting?”

Isaac leaned over and hit Murph in the head with the controller. “No, moron. I meant why does St. Savoy care that I’m gay? Why does that bother straight guys so much, anyway?”

Murph and Hux exchanged a look. “We don’t know, man. We don’t care,” Hux said, shrugging.

“Maybe he’s gay and hates himself,” Murph piped up. “I mean. That’s like, classic. Isn’t it?”

Isaac and Hux stared at Murph. “Is it?” Hux asked as if he’d never seen his roommate before.

“Well, I mean. When I found out Drake was gay, I looked online about how to, y’know, be friends with a gay guy, and—”

“You what?” Isaac fell back against the cushions, not sure if he wanted to laugh or punch Murph. Misha hadn’t said anything about not hitting him. “Jesus. You’re friends with me like you’re friends with Hux.”

“I know that, but….” Murph looked embarrassed. “I just wanted to make sure I didn’t make you mad or anything.”

Isaac shook his head and gave a rueful laugh. “So wait. What did this website say? How are you supposed to be friends with me, straight boy?”

“He’s not that straight if he kissed you,” Hux pointed out.

“I just did it ’cause Erin was into it, and I wanted her to go out with me.” Murph shot Isaac an apologetic glance. “No offense.”

Isaac lifted his beer. “None taken. You weren’t that good at it, and you’re not pretty enough for me anyway.”

“Whatever. I’m a stud, and you know it. Anyway, I read a thing. About how people who are bullies about that shit, maybe it’s because they’re gay too, and they hate themselves.”

“I hate to point this out, but a lot of people call me a fag on the ice.” Isaac rolled his eyes. “Hockey players are not that original, and it’s not like it’s a secret.”

“You just make sure you tell me who they are, bro,” Hux said, slamming a fist into his palm. “Hard to talk without any teeth.”

Isaac had lucked out in the friend department.

“Yeah. But they don’t spit on you,” Murph said and then scowled darkly. “I wish I could have hit him for that. Hard.”

Hux scowled. “You and me both, Murph. Coach Ashford wouldn’t let me on the ice. ’Course, we all thought Coach was gonna hit that asshole himself.”

The guys usually called Coach Ashford by his last name, but Misha was usually just Coach.

“I wonder what Penis St. Dickhead—”

Isaac immediately choked on his beer at Hux’s inventive nickname for Denis St. Savoy.

“—said to Coach. You ever find out?”

“No. Sorry. We don’t discuss our secrets during our gay sleepovers. Hux, you just blew up that car we were supposed to steal. We did this mission last week, remember?”

“Why are we doing it again, then?”

“You like the half-dressed girls in the hot tub at the end,” Murph offered helpfully.

Isaac laughed, and the conversation went back to explosives and shouting at each other to stop failing and successfully complete the heist. They didn’t talk about St. Savoy, but Isaac felt a strange feeling of unease as he headed home. Laurent was going to change things, and he hated that. He couldn’t imagine what having him in the locker room was going to do to the team.

The house was quiet when he got in, and he braved a quick dart into the kitchen to get some water. That had backfired more than once, when he thought his coaches were asleep and was treated to the unmistakable auditory evidence that they weren’t. Another time Isaac discovered Misha getting water in the kitchen after he’d obviously fucked Coach Ashford. Misha had been sweaty and not wearing a shirt.

Misha was an attractive man, even if he was way too old for Isaac to consider hot. He wasn’t Isaac’s type at all, but he’d had no idea that his coach had such impressive abs or all the tattoos. Isaac had stared blatantly, because fondness for pretty boys or not, those were hot.

But Isaac was safe, because it was quiet and no sex noises or half-dressed Russians interrupted his quest for a glass of water and a snack—he knew where Coach Ashford kept the Twinkies.

If it hadn’t been for the part where he decked his new backup goalie, who he hated, Isaac would have been having a pretty great week.

At least he had two weeks before practice started. Two weeks to play video games with Hux and Murph, empty the dishwasher, eat some Twinkies, and pretend Laurent St. Savoy was just a bad memory.

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About Avon

Avon Gale was once the mayor on Foursquare of Jazzercise and Lollicup, which should tell you all you need to know about her as a person. She likes road trips, rock concerts, drinking Kentucky bourbon and yelling at hockey. She’s a displaced southerner living in a liberal midwestern college town, and she never gets tired of people and their stories — either real or the ones she makes up in her head.

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14 thoughts on “Empty Net by Avon Gale, Exclusive Excerpt & Giveaway!

  1. This is going to be another winner! I will be ready at midnight, (okay-9pm my time) on September first!

  2. I’ve read and loved all the books in this series so far. Looking forward to this one. 🙂

  3. Thanks for the excerpt! Loved the previous books in the series too. Even went to a hockey game.

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