We’re offering a special treat for December: The novella is on sale for .99c at Amazon.
BUY LINK: Amazon
In addition I am having a contest for some fun holiday items.
Dec 1-15 – Contest in connection with HOLLY’S BIG BAD SANTA. A fun Santa-themed kitchen set with a hand towel, hot pad, and a mitt. See a photo on the contest link.
BLURB – Holly’s Big Bad Santa
Jared had left Danville, Kansas, a confused and angry teenager. The black sheep of his family, he’d done his best not to look back. Then a letter from home made it impossible for him to stay away.
Holly was leaving Danville for a new life in California. Suddenly he was desperate to return home, to convince her to build a life with him.
But convincing Holly proved to be more difficult than he’d thought. Holly had always loved Jared, but after fifteen years she’d given up hope of him returning to Danville and she’d decided to move on with her life, a life which didn’t include Jared.
PG 13 EXCERPT – Holly’s Big Bad Santa
Even though it wouldn’t officially be Christmas season until the day after tomorrow, his parents had already put up the usual thousands of tiny white lights along the roof’s edge and up and down the turrets. When he’d been a teenager, he’d tried to help with putting up those lights. All youthful macho man, he’d gotten careless and rolled off the roof from a high spot. He’d broken an arm, sprained a leg, and badly bruised his pride. That had pretty much ended his holiday decorating.
And he’d stopped celebrating Christmas altogether after he’d left here following his high school graduation.
He squeezed his eyes shut on that raw memory.
Pain. His upper left chest and his lower ribs on the same side throbbed from too many hours sitting in one position and from trying to help steer with his left arm when his right arm got too tired. He needed to lie down, although he probably should take one of the pain pills first. Which he really didn’t want to do. He hated feeling weak, mentally or physically.
Disgusted, he opened his eyes. He shifted his gaze toward the cottage-style house next door. Holly Jacob’s home. How many times had they sat snuggled together on that porch swing? How many kisses had he stolen there with her mother inside the house? Her kisses had been so sweet and yet filled with youthful passion. God, he missed them. Missed her.
Smoke curled lazily up from the fireplace. Christmas lights twinkled in the towering Scottish pine tree in the center of the yard. The three-foot tall plastic Santa and Mrs. Claus with two slightly smaller elves had been put out this time of year for as long as he could remember. They looked worn by age, but they were a Jacob’s family tradition, one that would stop after this season. The worn Santa and Mrs. Santa and the elves would probably be thrown out as Holly thinned her belongings.
His gaze hardened and moved to the For Sale sign only a few feet away from the Santa scene. His jaw tightened. He thought about the much read and sadly wrinkled email message he’d received from his dad just over three weeks ago. His friends had printed it out to bring to him in the hospital. The timely contact had been uncanny. It had come when he’d been thinking about selling out of the private security business. After having broken up with yet another woman he’d considered asking to marry him. Just when he’d been balanced in the precarious state of “there’s a 50/50 chance he’ll make it,” according to what his doctors had told his partners in the ICU while his body fought back infection from the gunshot wound and the collapsed lung from the fractured ribs. As if they’d known how much he really needed them, his dad had sent him another of his quarterly emails checking in. This one had gone a step further, with a request, a plea: “Come home for the holidays, son.”
Something pinched in the region of his heart. Here he was after all these years. Home.
He’d never thought this would happen. He’d left during a rainstorm in the middle of the night. Now he’d returned just after a snowstorm. The remnants of it were all around him. Cold. He felt chilled to the bone even in the heated car. Frustrated, too. “Holly is leaving us. You’d best come back and say your good-bye before it’s too late.”