Derrick's eyes were the placid gray-green of a lake under stormy clouds, waiting patiently for the tumultuous rains to begin. The storm would roil and churn on the surface, barely stirring the calm underneath. Eventually, it would break and blow past, leaving tranquillity in its wake.
Gavin had never expected to be those rains, falling and being drawn into Derricks fathomless depths.
-Review by Kazza K
Velocity is the third and final book of the Impulse series. It's a good way to finish and I couldn't have asked for a better wrap up to the trilogy. There is some lovely writing in this book, particularly during introspection, some great sex, and two men who are dealing with their own issues increasingly as a couple, as opposed to two men who happen to be in a relationship dealing with issues.
This time both Derrick and Gavin have their own POV, as opposed to Inertia and Acceleration where it is purely Derrick's perspective. Ms Gormley did the right thing here. It allows the reader to know why Gavin flirted with Derrick in the first place, how he is feeling about his HIV status getting so close to the final test, his feelings about his poor-excuse-for-a-human ex, Lukas, who may have infected him . And, most importantly to me, how he feels about Derrick. How he feels about his growing relationship with Derrick. The first book is about first attractions and then reaction to a possible serodiscordant relationship. The second book expanded on that and dealt with Derrick's sad past and why he is so shut down. The third book is mostly about Gavin's issues and feelings -
"I'm scared," Gavin murmured after a moment, his voice muffled against Derricks neck.
"I should never have trusted Lukas."
Gavin talking to his friend Andi -
"If I could have chosen someone to put that much faith in, it would have been Derrick. The first time I trusted someone so completely that I let myself go skin-to-skin, it should have been him. If this test comes back positive, I'll never have that with him. And even if he says he doesn't mind, I do. I want that with him."
....and Derrick's support -
Gavin couldn't have known just what a gentle, bruised soul Derrick had, or the fear he'd had to overcome to let himself reach out once again. He couldn't have known just how much he'd need Derrick to ground him, to remind him that when everything seemed huge and scary, he could come back to the peace of Derrick's arms.
It was enough that Gavin needed him. Derrick could wait for the rest.
Derrick's issues come to a head with the hockey league, Gavin's issues come to a head with Lukas, and both men end up dealing with these respective problems in a most satisfactory manner. Gavin is debating whether to get his final blood work before the holidays or after, and both men come to terms with what the results may be. Derrick is sure and at peace with the fact that he loves Gavin, irrespective of the results. This time Gavin has some soul-searching to do, some what ifs to conquer if he is to be at peace.... no matter the results.
I must admit to having a meltdown about Gavin contacting Lukas to find out if what he said to Derrick was correct - that he hired himself out to other men to make ends meet during college. I'm a big subscriber to the saying "fool me once, fool you; fool me twice, fool me." So I wasn't big on his reasoning to get back in touch with Lukas, it made no difference to the outcome of his personal tests and it opened him up to manipulation again. It also ticked me off that he questioned Derrick, one of the nicest men (lots of Derrick love from me), based on the word of Lukas the Liar -
...Derrick wore his heart in those eyes. In them, Gavin saw everything he'd ever wanted to see in a partner.
Gavin likes to top in bed but there is occasion and cause for him to be topped by Derrick, who is the physically bigger man. I always enjoyed that Gavin is slight, more noticeably gay and he is the top. The sex was again BDSM oriented here with Derrick loving the way Gavin talks to him, causes delicious pain, and frees him. And there is reason for Gavin needing his own pressure release as well in this book. The scenes where Derrick tops Gavin are face-meltingly sexy, meaningful, and too long to include all parts, but here is some of it -
Lord. No wonder Derrick never dommed. He was fucking terrifying when he did. He was strong enough to win and he knew it, and that made him cold, collected, completely in control. He could play the game as long as necessary, waiting Gavin out with that infinite patience of his, and then do whatever the hell he wanted to Gavin.
Fuck, that was hot.
"You just go ahead and you fight and you run your mouth all you need to," he said dismissively...
"You'll only make it worse for yourself." With each effort to twist his body away, his rock-hard dick banged maddeningly against Derrick's hip.
"Fuck, that's a sexy look on you, all pissed-off and helpless. Derrick murmured, his lips brushing Gavin's in a mockery of tenderness.
"I can fuck you until you scream, until you beg me to let you come."
"Yes, " Gavin groaned as Derrick pushed into him the first inch, the stretch more difficult for all the pain-ridden tension in his body. Gavin tried to relax despite the discomfort radiating from his nipples as Derrick paused, but then he snapped his hips forward, wrenching a yell from Gavin.
Derrick growled above him. gasping as Gavin shuddered, moaning.
"Fuck, you're tight." He waited only a moment to allow Gavin to adjust before he drew back and did it again. The pressure of the clamps on his nipples was a dull, hot torment, and the feel of Derrick driving into him straddled the knife-edge where pleasure became so intense it was unendurable. Too good, too painful, too perfect.
Derrick is quietly supportive, he's good at support, and Gavin frets more and more. The good thing is that Derrick is not dealing with his anxieties like before, as sex and his ability to speak more openly about his feelings, if he so chooses, have made him stronger. Gavin's feelings build to a crescendo and then he realises he finally, genuinely does have the love and support of a good man no matter what. That he isn't a powerless victim to Lukas. He leans to believe, which helps immeasurably for whatever is coming.
I'm very glad I found this trilogy. It is a well written series centred around two really, really likeable characters, and their building relationship, with some interesting friends and acquaintances thrown into the mix here and there. But the Impulse trilogy definitely belongs to Derrick and Gavin as their relationship is front and centre throughout. The characterisations were very well written and solid all the way, the emotions very real, the events never felt forced, rather something that could happen to you or a friend, and the sex was smoking hot, at times kinky, and inventive throughout. I'm most happy with the way the trilogy ended and I'm glad to have been there with Derrick and Gavin from beginning to end. I'm going to miss them.
5 Soulful Stars