Silent Lodge (In the Company of Men 4) by Lynn Lorenz
More light than the previous books in this series, mostly since the story is mainly set in an isolated lodge in the forest giving the characters more freedom, it follows the same trend of mixing together strong and domineering men with more gentle and kind companions. Peter is the captain of Duke Logan; in a previous book Logan and Drake, a pair, shared their bed with Peter, but Peter is bisexual, and he is in love with his wife, and so that was only a passing fling. Unfortunately Peter’s wife dies in childbirth, and Peter convinced himself it was the punishment for his sin. Despite this, when Logan sends him to Marsden Lodge, an hunting lodge in the northern border of his dukedom, Peter falls in lust (not love) with Arvel, the deaf mute caretaker of the place. Arvel is petite and pretty like a forest fairy (no pun intended), with big lavender eyes and long red hair; he would have not survived the harsh life of a medieval village if not for the help of Gareth, a big and burly mercenary that between hirings comes back to Arvel and helps him. That of Arvel with Gareth is love, but Arvel is really like a forest creature, welcoming and friendly with everyone who shares with him a kind spirit. And so Arvel welcome Peter not only inside the lodge, but also in his bed. And when Gareth comes back to him as usual, Arvel wants for Gareth and Peter to be lover like he is with Gareth. Everything is perfect if not that Peter understands his relationship with Arvel, or even the one he will build with Gareth, is not love; this will be righted by him meeting with Caelin, a young man who destined to priesthood, was shunned due to his sin of homosexuality.
Silent Lodge is an erotic tale, the various relationship in this tale, between Logan, Drake and Peter, between Peter, Arvel and Gareth, and between Peter and Caelin, are built upon sex, and only in some cases they developed in love. But the sex is without regret, especially when there is the chance to deepen the relationship beyond a simple escapade. These men don’t consider what they are doing a sin, because they are not harming anyone; this is even more evident due to the isolation of the lodge: who can be affected by their actions if no one is aware of what they are doing? Basically the sin is only that since people, and not God, stated it.