Pirates and thieves and treasure abound in this short fun story. It’s quasi steampunk with just enough details to set the story in that genre but not enough to really delve into the setting or satisfy die hard fans. The Tea Demon works despite this lack of detail because the real focus is on the men and their entertaining relationship with a backdrop of rather humorous and far-fetched hijinks. The writing and Grey’s style is what I like the most. The story is enjoyable and short enough that it gives a quick thrill and an enjoyable tale.
Eric Devon is a thief in a rut. He’s not interested in doing most jobs anymore and it takes a mysterious but handsome stranger to propel Eric out of his lassitude. The fact that Eric wants to devour the stranger is simply a side benefit. The stranger turns out to be the legendary Tea Demon and the sparks they create together rival the Demon’s temper. Beyond having hot, sweaty sex together they must figure out how to steal back a priceless artifact from an impenetrable vault.
The plot is very basic and reads like the opening scene from Pirates of the Carribean or any pirate movie. The opening bar brawl is very fun and well crafted. Often scenes like this get muddled and are difficult to convey in words but the writing is crisp so you can always follow the action and various quips. It’s a familiar opener but it easily works here and sets up a good dynamic between the two men. From there the story offers a few steam punk details and alludes to the big heist but really the focus is on Eric and Jon as they dance around and toward each other.
There’s no much resistance on either side against their illiasion so the two end up in bed pretty quick. It’s hot, sweaty, and definitely firey. Similarly the heist is fun and ridiculous with a lot of predictable curves. Each move in the story is obvious and there aren’t really any surprises but the smooth, clear writing and engaging cast make it worthwhile. The various characters are woefully under developed but again I can’t say I minded with the intended light hand and tone. Instead it’s an easy short story to enjoy for what it is and not worry about what it lacks.
At least that was how I approached it and quite enjoyed this short. I didn’t particularly long for more of this couple, though I wouldn’t mind another short that stars more of the Demon’s crew, but overall this satisfies.