About Composing a Family
Author: Sean Michael
Word Count: 50,000
Page Count (pdf): 181
Date Published: December 2017
Publisher: Sean Michael
Price: regular price 5.99, new release price 4.99!
Series name and number: Mannies Incorporated 6
Tenor Abriole has just finished his stint as nanny for the Wilsons. He was with the family for twenty-one years, ever since he was eighteen. Now he’s looking for a new family, but finding that at thirty-nine, many people think he’s too old, and those who don’t think that’s a problem are balking at the fact that he’s a man, or that he’s gay, or both. He finally turns to Mannies Inc. for help finding a new position.
Daniel Thorpe is a well-known composer who lives and breathes music. He very much wants to be a father, so he goes the surrogate route, and winds up with triplets on the way. He turns to Mannies Inc. well before his girls are born, but so far has not been happy with any of the men who have applied, until Tenor shows up for an interview. Tenor’s experience being nanny to five children, as well as the fact that he stayed with a single family that long are both pluses in Daniel’s book.
Could it be that Tenor is the last note Daniel needs to compose his greatest work yet – his family?
Tenor Abriole hadn’t had any intention of going through a nanny service to get a new job, but when he started having trouble finding something, he signed up with Mannies Incorporated. That way the people interviewing him would already know he was a man, he was gay, and he’d been with his former family for twenty-one years, so he was no longer a spring chicken.
That any of those things had people turning him away made him extra growly. He was a damn good nanny. He had a glowing reference from the Wilsons and thirty-nine was in no way too old to take care of children. Hell, lots of people these days were waiting for their early forties to start having kids.
Thanks to Mannies Inc., he was on his way to see Daniel Thorpe. Single dad-to-be, expecting triplets and, apparently, very picky. The guy at Mannies had warned him that Thorpe had already interviewed a half-dozen mannies and not been happy with any of them. Ten could only hope that the fact he was more mature would actually work in his favor this time. More mature. Christ, he wasn’t even forty yet, and he had tons of experience.
The alarm on his watch went off, warning him that he was two minutes from his scheduled appointment. Perfect. He got out of his car, crossed the street to Thorpe’s house, and rang the bell.
It was a lovely place—large and well-appointed with grounds that weren’t too fancy for children to play in. It looked like a wonderful home for a child—or children, in this case—to grow up.
He couldn’t see the backyard, but he knew the houses in this area had fairly big ones so there would be room for a play set and maybe even a sandbox. He smoothed down his hair, wondering if he should have gotten it cut. It wasn’t terribly long, but did it look too casual? He was too old to be this nervous, but he wanted to make a great first impression. He really didn’t want another rejection.
Hell, he couldn’t afford one. He rang the bell, a ringing musical tone filling the air. Oh, that was going to wake babies up. They’d have to find something softer.
As he waited, he glanced at his watch again. He was right on time, so Thorpe should be expecting him. Of course, with a big house like this one, it could take a while to get to the door if you were at the other end of the house or upstairs.
The door opened, an elderly man answering. “Good afternoon.”
Oh. Dear. This guy was having triplets? He was going to need more than one nanny, at the start at least.
Ten held out his hand. “Good afternoon, I’m Tenor Abriole.”
“Ah, yes. You’re here to see Mr. Daniel. Please come to the sitting room, and I’ll let him know you’ve arrived.”
Ah. Now that made more sense. And wow. Fancy. “Thanks.”
“Of course. I’m Matt. I’m Daniel’s personal assistant.”
“Nice to meet you, Matt. Hopefully we’ll be working together.” Might as well put it out there in the universe, right?
“That would be grand. I know he wants to have someone in place in plenty of time.”
Ten wasn’t sure what exactly that entailed, but he just smiled and looked around as Matt left. The place looked like it had been put together by a designer. Very elegant, but the couch he sat on was comfortable enough. There was going to have to be a fair bit of childproofing once the kids were mobile.
There was lots of art around and tons of books—it looked like someone enjoyed sci-fi and horror, but most of the books seemed to be about music. He wondered if Thorpe played an instrument. There wasn’t one here in the living room, but that didn’t mean much.
Ten resisted the urge to get up and pace.
“Sorry, I had an unexpected conference call.” A lovely man came through the door, long black hair swinging, bright blue eyes sparkling behind wire-rimmed glasses. “I’m Daniel. Pleased to meet you.”
Standing, he took Daniel’s hand. Warm, firm, and a shock of static, making them both break apart unexpectedly. Ten chuckled. “Tenor. Nice to meet you too.”
“Tenor? Seriously? Great name.”
“Thanks. Most people call me Ten.” His mom had been into the Four Tenors big-time when she’d been pregnant with him.
“Have a seat, please. Let me grab my notes.”
Notes. That was nice and organized.
“Sure thing. The agency said they would send you my resume, but I brought a copy for you just in case.”
“Thank you, but I do have it.” A neat stack of paperwork with a clipboard and a checklist on top appeared from a cubby in the bookcase. “You were with a single family a long time.”
“I was, yes. Five kids all told. I joined the family just after the second child was born.” He’d been eighteen, newly kicked out of the house for being gay, and a job where room and board were included was a godsend. The Wilsons had had four girls and one boy at the end. It had been a very sad day for him when the family didn’t need him anymore.
“Goodness. Any multiples?”
“No, but one, two, and three were close enough together they almost count. At one point all three were in diapers.” That hadn’t been the case for long, but it had been fairly intense. “I hope that doesn’t put me out of the running. I’m confident that I can handle three at once, given there’s no other children.”
“I’m looking for someone specific, I admit, but no, that’s not a deal breaker. Talk to me about your philosophies, about how you deal with children.”