John loves his job as head rigger for Cirque Brilliance. The heavy scarring over half his face makes it a little hard to meet new people, but John's got a good crew and a nice found family, and he’s content with his lot in life.
When Cirque hires talent for a new show, John meets Bao, a bright, ever-cheerful acrobat. Bao seems drawn to John and becomes a constant presence at his side — talking to him during downtime, spending time with him at lunch, and generally seeking out his company.
John doesn't know what to make of this. Sure, he likes Bao — maybe a little too much, honestly — but he’s had enough experience to know that Bao couldn’t possibly like him back. Or so he thinks, anyway. Fortunately, Bao seems determined to prove him wrong.
I love Bao. He is one of those amazing sunny, kind heroes with a lot of talent. John is nice but I adore Bao.
This is a slow burn and as such need to be more than a novella so that we could really see this relationship flourish.
I also would have preferred alternating points of view. Being stuck in John's head with Bao's limited English makes less of Bao and thus racially colors in a negative way this sweet love story.
Bao is so awesome. Aidan Wayne, please write longer books!