I always knew that Lysander was going to be a photographer. I saw some landscapes by Galen Rowell in one of those coffee table books at a friend’s house and was mesmerised by images. A bit of research revealed that Galen died tragically in a ‘plane crash long before his time and that made his work all the more poignant.
In a retrospective of his work, there’s a quote in the foreword which says, “Galen Rowell was a man who went into the mountains, into the desert, to the edge of the sea, to the last great wild places in the world to be absorbed by their grace and grandeur. That is what he did for himself. For the rest of us, he shared his vision with—click—the release of a shutter, creating photographs as timeless, as stunning, and as powerful as nature itself.”
That was my vision for Lysander. He takes pictures for himself, not just to make a living. His passion for his work means that he lives a professional life without limits. I wanted to explore whether the same might apply to his love life. Picturing Lysander began the story, my earlier short story which set the foundation for the longer adventure that now forms Testing Lysander. And their journey truly is a test—of endurance, of spirit and of love. This story throws the characters into some of the most extreme and demanding situations I could come up with. Caving, climbing, impenetrable forests and psychotic terrorists all feature. Through it all, Brock and Kyle grow closer together, exploring dominance and submission with a backdrop of intense pressure. If they can survive their mission, surely they can survive anything. But it’s never that simple and a return to safety brings its own demands. No relationship is easy but I hope that the love shines through in this story. That doesn’t guarantee a happy ending though… you’ll have to read the book to find out whether the passion endures.
Brock scooped more ground coffee into the cafetière, then filled the kettle and put it on to boil. At the rate he and Kyle were absorbing caffeine, the two of them would be awake half the night. He grinned. That wasn’t a bad idea at all. He may have resigned himself to this being a short-term thing, but he was sure as hell going to enjoy it. It wasn’t every day a man like Kyle walked into his life.
He took two mugs from the draining board where they’d been left to dry from breakfast and put them on the counter top, fiddling with their position until the handles were aligned and perfectly parallel. The mugs were a sunny yellow color with a daisy pattern around the rim. Ceramic cheerfulness wasn’t enough, however, to dislodge Brock’s thoughts from the dark track they were heading along.
Talking about the trip and all the planning that went into each and every expedition made the danger a bit more real. Brock had spent many months refining every detail of his expedition. The Colombian cloud forests were not a destination to be taken lightly and he was well aware of the risks of traveling in such an inhospitable area. As a legitimate trip, it was still a dangerous undertaking. Add into that the secret mission Kyle had enlisted him for and Brock thought he might need to up the cover on his travel insurance.
“Not that any insurer in the world is going to give me a policy that covers this trip,” he muttered.
“Stop worrying,” Kyle said from the doorway.
“Stop following me,” Brock snapped back. “I need a moment of panic, if it’s all right with you?”
Kyle chuckled. “You thrive on adventure and danger. Don’t try to tell me that this trip doesn’t excite you, because I know it does. Forget about the terrorists and concentrate on the territory you’ll be accessing. You’ll get pictures no other photographer is ever likely to see through a lens.”
“There are good reasons why people don’t venture into certain parts of the world,” Brock said dryly.
“And better reasons for taking that extra step, as you well know. This isn’t the first time you’ll take risks for pictures. I’ve seen your work, Brock, remember? You’re even crazier than I am. The shots you took in Irian Jaya—in the Jayawijaya mountains. You had to have been dangling off the rock face by your fingernails to get those pictures.”
“Not the same thing, and you know it.”
The newest addition to the What’s his Passion? imprint.
Feel the fear and do it anyway.
Extreme photographer Lysander Brock is accustomed to challenging places and situations but nothing can prepare him for the journey that his dominant lover, Kyle Dawson, takes him on.
A commission to photograph the cloud forests of the Colombian Andes becomes the cover for a dangerous mission to expose a terrorist group. Kyle and Lysander must negotiate treacherous terrain, a hazardous climb and unexplored caves to achieve their goal.
When Lysander is captured and tortured, he has no expectations of rescue. He understands that his life comes second to the mission but Kyle has no intention of leaving his beautiful, submissive lover in the hands of a madman. Kyle can deal with the intense pressure of fighting lethal enemies but the guilt of pushing Lysander into a life he never asked for is much harder to accept.
Lysander and Kyle journey together into a life of adventure, Dominance and submission, and an uncertain future.
Publisher's Note: This book is a sequel to Picturing Lysander and is best read in order.
Like the sound of Testing Lysander? Buy it here.
About LM Somerton:
Lucinda lives in a small village in the English countryside, surrounded by rolling hills, cows and sheep. She started writing to fill time between jobs and is now firmly and unashamedly addicted.
She loves the English weather, especially the rain, and adores a thunderstorm. She loves good food, warm company and a crackling fire. She's fascinated by the psychology of relationships, especially between men, and her stories contain some subtle (and some not so subtle) leanings towards BDSM.
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