This week’s guest is a man we first met a little over two years ago when he and his men were hired to protect Indy and his family from the Boston mob family that was after Indy. From the moment he stepped onto the scene, Wander’s presence was felt, and many of you asked for his story. With No Surrender, you all got your wish. Please welcome Wander Dwyer, owner of Dwyer Private Security.
Wander, thanks so much for sitting down with me for an interview.
My pleasure. It had been a few weeks since we last spoke, so it’s good to catch up.
How’s everyone doing?
You mean all my men? Good, good. We’re still in Jesse’s house, and we love it there. We’ve recovered from the harrowing events that happened earlier, and we’re hoping for a new assignment. In the meantime, we’ve found other ways to…entertain ourselves.
I bet you did. How’s Burke?
[smiles] He’s… He’s good. Perfect. I mean, I sound like some besotted idiot, but he’s just perfect. He’s so wonderfully needy now that he’s accepted that part of himself and so sweet and tender. He’s got his faults and weaknesses, like we all do, but we’re happy together. Very happy. I barely recognize myself, the way I’m talking about him, feeling about him. I’ve never thought of myself as a mushy and sentimental type, and yet here we are with me waxing poetic about my man. He’s just… Burke is special. He’s mine.
Talk to me about the first time you met him.
That was at Thanksgiving a few months ago at Indy’s house. He showed up out of the blue, looking for Blake and Brad, who were both celebrating Thanksgiving at Indy’s house. I opened the door, not knowing who he was, though I had a suspicion as soon as he saw him. They all look alike, those Kent brothers. Same dark hair, some brown eyes. I stayed there when he talked to Blake, then Brad, and I remember feeling sorry for him. I didn’t know the specifics, but I could tel he’d gone through a rough time, and he was looking for forgiveness. I’m not someone who’s ever been prone to mushy feelings, but even back then, my heart went out to him.
Your connection was not instant.
[laughs] God, no. I think Burke wanted to slap me in the beginning. I was the thorn in his side. I became his mentor in his path to become a Dom, and from the get go, something was off about him. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but he was hiding something. It took me a while to figure out what he was, mostly because he genuinely hadn’t realized himself. But I was riding him hard because I needed to make sure he was a good Dom, before I greenlighted him to join the club as a Dom.
He made some discoveries about himself, including that he wasn’t as straight as he thought.
You know, I think that was another aspect that deep down, he’d always known but had chosen to ignore or forget or suppress, whatever you want to call it. He’s definitely not just gay, and so the part of him that was attracted to men was easy to ignore since he was attracted to women as well. He had his reasons for that, and I’ve never judged him for it.
You come from very different backgrounds.
We do. I’m from a relatively affluent Boston family with very supportive parents. They never had an issue with me being gay or with me being a Dom. Burke grew up in a household with an abusive, alcoholic father, often with little money. After both his parents had died, his older brother Blake actually became guardian, and so Burke has not known a lot of stability.
His reconciliation with his brothers did not go as planned.
[his face tightens] No, it didn’t, and it bothers me. I don’t think Blake and Brad are being fair to Burke. I understand that he may have acted out when he was sixteen, after his mom had died. But he was a child, a confused, grieving, angry child. I don’t think it’s fair that they still sort of blame him for that… The problem is that he still blames himself, and until he fully realizes and accepts he was as much a victim as they were, just in a different way, I don’t think they’ll be able to work it out. But I do have hope. They love each other. Things may be rough, but they’re already better than they were before, and I have faith they’ll work it out.
Let’s talk about you a little more. You really connected with Indy and his family. What was it about them that appealed to you so much?
The love and acceptance. These men have built themselves a family that is so full of love and acceptance, that it made my heart all warm and fuzzy. I love seeing the complicated but beautiful relationships, the way they all take care of each other and provide each other with what they need without judgement. Especially when it comes to sexual needs, those men have such an amazing way of embracing each other’s identities and cravings. Like the way Brad and Charlie can take care of Miles out in the open, of the way Connor and Noah will step up when Brad needs discipline and Miles isn’t there to provide it. They have each other’s backs, and it’s the most amazing thing. I really wanted that for myself.
Do you think you found it?
You mean with my men in Jesse’s house? We’re not there yet, but it definitely has the potential. Of course we can’t copy-paste what Indy’s family has. We’re different men with different needs. But I definitely think we have the beginnings of something beautiful and dirty…
Janet Ierston MacKrell says
When we first met Burke, we only saw him from Brad’s and Blake’s points of view. Once we met him for himself, my heart broke for him.
Dominique Dolgener says
Thank you once again for this amazing character.
I hope it is okay to ask a question in regards to the timeline you mentioned: both the Book (No Surrender) and the interview mention that Wander met Burke at the Thanksgiving dinner at Indy‘s house. But in No Angel, were we meet Wander the Thanksgiving Dinner is in Chapter 1 (Connor opens the door to meet Burke) and Wander does not show up in the book until Chapter 7. And please let me say that this question is simply one of idle curiosity and i do not mean to sound critical (I loved all the No Shame books as well as No Surrender) but it just niggled at me (and makes me wonder if I missed anything in regards to update to the books – I do not have the boxset, only individual books)
Thank you very much once again for all your stories.
Oops, I messed up… I thought Wander was already there but he wasn’t till Christmas. Sorry! It’s so hard to keep those little details straight…