Bon Voyage - Book cover

Bon Voyage

Michael BN

Age Rating


Killian is not particularly looking forward to joining a cross-Atlantic cruise for his mother's fiftieth birthday. Circumstances quickly change in a very unexpected way when he meets the mysterious Jean Pierre

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Chapter 1

“A cruise?! Are you fucking kidding me?” I said in disbelief.

“It’s your mom’s fiftieth birthday, Killian. She wants you there,” Dad said calmly.

“But I was going to use my break to study!”

“Just join us for the transatlantic crossing,” Dad said in his usual frustratingly calm way. “You can fly back from London.”

“Who else is going?” I asked, crossing my arms.

“Aunt Vivian and Uncle Hugh, the Kleins, and Mrs. Winter,” Dad said, counting on his fingers.

“So, all the fun people.”

“Your mother invited them. I’m just trying to make her birthday special,” Dad replied. He didn’t seem particularly happy about the guestlist either.

“Can I bring someone?” I asked.

Dad raised his eyebrows slightly before saying, “I didn’t know you were seeing anyone.”

“I’m not. I just wanted to know how you would react.”

“We’ve been over this, Killian. Your mother isn’t ready to tell her friends and family that her son is…”

“Gay? Why is this even an issue?”

“She needs time,” Dad said, turning onto the highway.

“She, she, she! How do you do it, Dad? Your entire life revolves around a narcissist that doesn’t give a shit about either of us!”

“Don’t talk about your mother like that!” he said, finally raising his voice.

My dad was a chronic people pleaser who never got angry, yet I’d finally managed to push a button.

“I’ll come on the cruise on one condition,” I said defiantly.

“I’m listening,” Dad said, always happy to find a diplomatic solution.

“I want my own apartment. Moving back into the house after freshman year was clearly a mistake. I need space to live my life, not Mom’s version of it.”

“That can be arranged,” he said.

Why did I now feel like I lost?


Mom was hellbent on spending a lot of money on this trip, just like she always did. She considered herself deserving of only the best of the best, even though she’d never worked a day in her life.

Fortunately for her, Dad was the CEO of and could generally afford her borderline megalomania. Was it fucked up to question why my father loved her so much?

At first, Mom wanted to book Junior Exec Suites for her guests and me. She intended to reserve a C-Suite for herself, giving her access to a private dining room and terrace that literally looked down onto ours.

“No, Margaret,” Dad informed her stoically.

“But it’s my birthday!” Was she fucking pouting?

When Mom didn’t get what she wanted, she could throw tantrums like a child or worse…give us the silent treatment.

“You can’t invite people only to separate yourself from them,” he said, standing up to her for the first time in years.

“But I can go down to visit them whenever I like,” she said. Was she listening to herself?

“The answer is still no. You can either book five rooms on the same deck or I’m canceling the trip,” Dad said, calmly cleaning his glasses.

What the fuck?!

I felt the sudden urge to hug him. Mom seemed as surprised as I was and just nodded in reply.

This trip might be more fun than I thought!


If I was going to be trapped on this ship for seven days, I might as well enjoy myself. Dad expected me to be around for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as the official birthday dinner in the captain’s lounge on Wednesday evening.

Aunt Vivian had invited me to join them for the daily activities, but shuffleboard and bridge weren’t exactly my idea of a good time.

I hung around the pool area until I got bored and then went to see a movie in the onboard movie theater.

During lunch, I had to endure Mom telling everyone how charming the event coordinator was. She’d been trying to provoke Dad ever since he’d dared tell her no.

When I was finally allowed to leave, I somehow ended up in the ship’s library. The collection of books was impressive, and I quickly found something to read in one of the comfortable armchairs with a sea view.

“Est-ce que vous êtes français?” The voice came from next to me. I lowered my book to find a guy looking at me in expectation.

“I’m sorry, did you ask me something?”

“Oh, sorry. My mistake,” he said in slightly accented English. His hazel eyes had a mischievous glint to them.

“What did you ask?” I insisted, putting the book in my lap.

“I asked if you were French, but you clearly aren’t. My apologies,” he said, crossing one leg over the other.

He was wearing a red polo shirt, white shorts, and a pair of navy-blue Vero loafers with no socks. He was very nice to look at.

“Why did you think I was French?” I asked in curiosity.

“Because you’re calmly sitting there reading Sartre’s La Nausée like it’s a paperback novel,” he said.

His dark blond hair was pulled up in a tight man-bun, away from his perfectly symmetrical face.

French?! I looked at my book and saw that I was on page thirty-five of…Bram Stoker’s Dracula.

He laughed a warm laugh and said, “You’d be surprised by how many people fall for that trick.”

What the fuck?!

“Jean Pierre, nice to meet you,” he said, holding out a hand.

“Is it?” I asked.

He gave me a puzzled look before adding, “I’m alone on this boat. I was just hoping to make a friend.”

“Good luck with that,” I said, returning to my book.

“Fine, I confess! I noticed you by the poolside and liked what I saw,” Jean Pierre said, leaning forward in his chair.

I dropped my book and blinked at him stupidly.

“Are you hitting on me?” I asked.


“What makes you think that I’m interested?” I asked. A straight dude would probably have sounded more offended.

“My gaydar is seldom wrong.”

“Still not interested,” I said, grinning like a fool.

“Bullshit! When I saw you by the pool, you looked straight up at me. You even lowered your glasses.”

I shook my head and said, “I was checking out a guy with messy hair and tattoos on both arms, smoking a cigarette on his balcony.”

“It wasn’t a cigarette,” Jean Pierre said, as he rolled up his sleeves to show me his ink.

“Oh,” I said quietly. I hadn’t been able to make out his face because of the sun’s glare.

“Let’s start again,” he said. “Jean Pierre, nice to meet you.”

“Killian,” I said, giving him a firm handshake. Mom always told me that limp wrists made me look weak.

“What an interesting name,” he said.

“It’s Irish,” I said with a shrug.

“You’re Irish?” he asked cheerfully.

“Nope. My mother chose the name because nothing associated with her can be perceived as ordinary,” I said.

“She sounds like an interesting woman.”

“Not the word I’d use,” I said with a frown.

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