Good Morning and Merry Christmas…
I want to say thank you to you for such a wonderful gift. Support. Friendship. Connection. You’ve bought and read my books, even if you didn’t like them afterward. You’ve sent encouragement my way and you’ve even sent criticism my way…both of which, have made me a better writer and a better person.
I don’t always write what the reader wants or expects and y’all let me know it. In the end though, it’s helped me grow and opened my mind and my eyes.
This year seems to have flown by and I am still wondering where it went. Holiday reading is something I enjoy so much and I haven’t even read a single book this season. It’s my hope that tonight I’ll have a chance to just sit and curl up with some words someone else wrote.
Words that I’ve written in holiday stories come in the form of a new M/M release, More Than This and an older but very fun story, Arrested Holiday.
Adam Sanchez makes good money, drives a vintage BMW, and is living up to the promise he made that he’d never be poor again. After two years without seeing his family for the holidays, he’s taking time off to give them a dream Christmas. At least, that was the plan.
But after taking a wrong turn off the interstate in search of the Blue Ridge Parkway, he finds himself skidding on a patch of ice and crashing into a big red barn. He wakes up sore, grumpy, and immediately attracted to his less than pleasant host who happens to be the spitting image of a young Elvis Presley.
Army veteran Josh Atkins doesn’t have time to babysit the idiot currently recovering on his family’s Christmas tree farm, but is left with little choice. That the man stirs something deep and primal in Josh can’t and doesn’t matter. It’s the busiest time of year and he’s needed at home.
As the two men begin to talk and share their stories, Josh’s hard-nosed stance softens. When he learns of Adam’s need to get to Asheville before Christmas, Josh is torn between letting him go and asking him to stay.
Maybe Josh can help Adam see that there’s more to happiness and freedom than a large bank account, and maybe Adam can teach Josh to see beyond the surface to the man he is beneath. And maybe, just maybe, they can show each other that there really is more than this.
Holiday ‘Holli’ James looks forward the week between Christmas and New Year’s. This is her one chance to get away from the hustle and bustle of her successful decorating business. The plan this year is a trip to New York City to see the sights and the lights.
The plan didn’t include a side trip to a small town jail in the middle of Pennsylvania. Nor did the plan include Officer Hunky.
A single police officer, Michael is working the holidays — again. With no local family and no interest in accepting the pity invitations to Christmas dinner from his married friends, he’s content to work and earn extra cash. Besides, this year looks to be as uneventful as ever. Until he pulls Holli over for speeding, only to discover she’s wanted on charges of fraud.
Sexual tension spikes as Michael begins to investigate and discovers Holli isn’t who her record says she is. While they await answers, Michael is granted permission to remove Holli from the jail and place her under house arrest.
Only his idea of house arrest is much more personal than the law ever intended.
If you haven’t checked them out, I hope you’ll do so… Just click on the book covers and it’ll take you to the pages for purchase information!
Cooking is on my agenda for this early holiday morning and I’d best get to it. There’s also many ounces of coffee to look forward to, as well as the last few Christmas movies that are sitting on my DVR. I hope you and yours are enjoying the day with friends and family. Rest up and relax because we have a big year to start on in a few days…;-)
Today was hard for me to pick. I have several books to choose from which are set right in the middle of Winter and freezing cold.
I also had a new M/M release this week that has a Christmas theme and it takes place with snow and ice and cold and requires quite a bit of hot chocolate.
He’d hated to wake Adam, but Josh wanted to get him up to the house and out of the wintry mix that had started falling and the wind that had started blowing.
The first thing Adam had said to Josh was to ask to see his car. Josh was hesitant but knew he’d have to relent sometime. Adam would be upset and rightly so. The car was pretty damn banged up and would take some extensive work to get it fixed and drivable again.
The back end was in fine shape except for a few scratches that could be buffed out, but the front quarter panels and the hood…
“I can’t believe it looks like this.”
“The impact was pretty hard,” Josh said from beside Adam.
“I realize it was a hard hit, but, fuck, this is… I hadn’t imagined it would be this bad.”
“I’m sorry, man.”
“I just can’t believe this. I don’t know how much of this insurance is going to pay for or if they’re going to total it. I guess it’s time I call them.”
“Yeah. I’ve pulled out what I thought you might need after I got you out of the car.”
“You’ve been really good to me through all this, Josh. I don’t know how to repay you.”
“I’d have done it for—”
“Please don’t say you’d have done it for anyone,” Adam said, his eyes full of pleading. “I don’t think I could take it if you did.”
Josh nodded. He understood what it would feel like if Adam had said the same thing to him. They were wrapped up in each other, and it was more than the blowjob from earlier. “Okay.”
Adam looked at Josh, and Josh couldn’t look away. His skin was flushed, and the snow was starting to fall harder, though Josh didn’t think Adam even realized it. He hadn’t wanted to upset Adam by showing him the condition the car was in, but Adam’s smile and softly worded request would have melted a glacier.
“Will you, ah… Will you show me around a little?”
“Adam, it’s freezing and snowing.”
“So? I know you can’t be afraid to get wet and a little cold.”
“Of course not. I was just worried about you.”
“Well, stop. I’m a grown man. I’m sore, not at death’s door.”
“You sure seemed like you were when I found you a little while ago.”
“Just take me outside and show me around. Please. I want to see the trees.”
Josh held out his hand and didn’t have to wait long for Adam to take it, to lace their fingers together. Josh’s breath caught, and his eyes met Adam’s again immediately. The feeling coursing through him at the connection singed his nerve endings. His heart thumped double-time, and his cock started hardening. He was even having a hard time thinking straight. “Damn, what is this between us?” Josh asked, unwilling to name it himself.
“I don’t know. I mean, I think I know, but at the same time, I don’t know.”
“You’re the one who asked the question.”
Josh shook his head and led Adam out of the barn. “C’mon.” There was a wide swath cut through the center of the yard where Adam’s car had slid across the snow and ice crusted on top. He’d come in at an angle and missed the tree lot.
Adam stopped and turned his body one way, gazed around, then turned his body the other way and gazed some more. Josh tried to view things through Adam’s eyes, but he wasn’t sure if they saw the same things. Josh saw peace and comfort and home. What did Adam see?
“It’s really beautiful here.”
“It is.” The farm was located in a small valley with mountains to the west near Boone and the Blue Ridge Mountains to the east and north. Hills and trees and views that were breathtaking filled Josh’s sight and mind every day. He was happier than he could ever have imagined being, having this place to come home to after seeing so much destruction overseas.
They started walking again, and when they got to the edge of the sales lot, Adam removed his hand from Josh’s. Josh felt the loss, and his hand was suddenly cold, but not from the temperature outside. He missed Adam’s touch.
Adam moved through the trees slowly, winding his way through each of the rows. “I’ve never seen such perfect Christmas trees before.”
“We pride ourselves in having the very best. They’re full and fragrant. They are hardy too. With proper care, they’ll last longer than most other trees from other farms.”
“How long has your family been doing this?”
Snow covered the branches and bristles, and it was several inches deep on the ground. It was supposed to rain through the evening and right on until morning. The wind was picking up, blowing snow across their faces. The cold would turn biting soon, and even though it wasn’t yet dark, he would need to get Adam back inside shortly.
“My great-grandparents started the farm when they first got married. The land was a gift to my great-grandpa from his father, which had been in the family since before the Civil War.”
“And the house I’m convalescing in?”
“I grew up in it but live alone there. My parents built a house on up the road, on the other side of the nursery. Todd and Kelly have a place farther up the mountain. There are aunts and uncles and cousins all over these parts.”
Jared slid his arms around Bryson’s waist and held him close and tight. Something had started cracking inside him when he and Bryson were quarreling with words last night, but that something kept right on fracturing, and soon all that hardness was going to fall away and he would be a vulnerable mess again. Bickering and squaring off with words was what they’d always done to settle disputes and arguments. It was familiar, comfortable, and it warmed him. The kiss hadn’t hurt either.
And while a day, a week, a month ago, he might have been annoyed at Walt showing up, that something cracking inside his chest extended to Walt as well. Jared’s hold on Bryson could be, or might be, construed as possessive. It wasn’t what he was feeling, though.
He was hungry, needy, wanting exactly what Bryson had suggested he wanted. To be between them, one in each of his holes, filling him, and surrounding him with their heat and lust and touches. He wanted them, wanted their love, and at least in his head, he could admit it.
But the last time he’d come clean about something, the last time he’d admitted how he felt about something, his father had decked him and called him every vile name not mentioned in the good book. He was a little gun-shy in the admission department.
“It’s a little cold out here to play. Maybe want to get the work done and then venture inside?”
The way Walt said the word “inside” set off every nerve ending from Jared’s brain to the soles of his feet. He wanted to bend over the middle railing of the pasture fence, putting himself into position for one man in front and one behind.
It might be cold out, but his cock was hard as stone.
“Maybe if you get off your high horse and help out, it’ll get done faster.”
“High horse?” Walt slowly dismounted. “My high horse?” His boots crunched on the snow and dead grass as he made his way, steady and sure, toward them. Bryson smirked, but Jared wasn’t sure how to take the look on Walt’s face. The closer he got, though, the more a smile broke out across his lips. Walt made a lunge at Bryson, but Bryson ducked out of Jared’s embrace and spun away.
When Walt caught up to him, Bryson was ready with… A snowball? Jared blinked. The snowball landed square in Walt’s stoic face. He wasn’t smiling anymore. No, he looked fit to be tied.
Another snowball flew, this time hitting Jared smack in the face. What the hell? He wiped the ice crystals from his eyes and cheeks just in time to see Walt tackle Bryson to the ground. The men laughed and wrestled, both losing footing and falling.
Jared just stood back and watched, unfamiliar feelings welling up inside. Lightness. Fun. He’d never really associated either with himself and definitely not with Walt, but his lovers—and yes, they were his lovers—looked to be having so much fun rolling around in the snow and ice, and mud found underneath.
If he just let go and stayed in the moment, he felt like a completely different person. He wasn’t so serious or so much in his own way. He liked this feeling, this energy, and this desire to be part of something bigger than his fears. It was how he’d been before that blasted dream so many months ago. He wanted out of his self-imposed exile and back in the warmth and decadence of male arms and hot, dirty sex.
For the moment, though… “Uh, how exactly is this getting the work on the fence done?” he asked when there was a lull in the laughter and he thought he might be heard. Both men looked over at him, their smiles falling, and for a moment, Jared felt bad about intruding on the fun when he’d rather be joining in. He hoped there would be time for it later. After the work. It was the one positive his father had taught him. Work before pleasure, because then pleasure could be enjoyed freely and without rush or guilt over things undone.
“You know, he’s right.”
“Yeah. He is. This really isn’t getting any work done.”
“No, it’s not.”
“We should do something about it.”
Walt stood first, then lowered a hand down to Bryson and helped him stand. They brushed their clothes off, but they were already soaked through. Walt took a step toward the four-wheeler Jared and Bryson had ridden out on, but at the last moment, detoured and made a move toward Jared. He had Jared flat on his back before he could catch his next breath.
The cold from the ground and the force of the impact took the following breath too. Bryson was on Walt’s back, working to pull him off Jared, but all he succeeded in doing was tangling them all together, as Walt’s hold on Jared was unforgiving in its strength.
“Two against one is totally unfair,” Jared huffed out, a grin breaking across his face.
“Maybe,” Bryson conceded. “I was trying to help though.”
Bryson pretended to think about it, but just grinned. “You, at first, but…” He casually lifted a shoulder. “I guess you could say it’s now two against one.”
“Fun though, yes?”
Jared rolled from beneath Walt, his hand under his ass a conscious move. His fingers gathered snow, and he tilted to the side, back toward the big Native American. Their lips met in a searing kiss, one hot enough it should have melted the ground beneath them, but then Walt’s lips were gone, a hiss issuing from them. Jared’s hand was empty of the snow because he’d worked it inside Walt’s jeans.
Bryson was kneeling off to the side, laughing.
“Think it’s funny, huh?” Walt growled, trying to get the ice from inside his pants. It dropped out from the bottom of his jeans. He reached his hand down the front and scooped out a rather large chunk of snow, which he promptly threw at Bryson.
But then, when he turned that look on Jared, Jared didn’t know whether to run or stand his ground. Revenge was written all through Walt’s eyes. A wicked tilt to his lips made Jared think of very naughty acts, and suddenly, though the play in the snow was fun, he couldn’t wait to get back in the house.
“I’ll be getting you for that, cowboy,” Walt said, promises and threats threaded through each word.
“I’m counting on it,” Jared replied. He found he meant it too. He couldn’t think of anything he wanted more in that moment other than for Walt to get him back, for Walt to punish him in some way for having played dirty enough to let loose a snowball over Walt.
I’m headed out to do some holiday shopping but y’all be sure to check out the following blogs for great snippets:
Have a great Saturday!