Christmas novels

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Kringle Chapter 6 Part 4
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Kringle Chapter 6 Part 3
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Kringle Chapter 6 Part 2
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Kringle Chapter 6 Part 1
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Kringle Chapter 5 Part 4
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Kringle Chapter 5 Part 3
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Kringle Chapter 5 Part 2
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Kringle Chapter 5 Part 1
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Kringle Chapter 4 Part 4
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Kringle Chapter 4 Part 3

Kringle Chapter 6 Part 4

With Christmas fast approaching, I thought why not ease you all into the spirit of the holiday with ten chapters from my novel, KRINGLE. Yes! Ten free chapters for you to enjoy running Monday through Thursday until November 16th. Hope you enjoy!

To catch up on the story I’ve added the Links to the end of this post.

~*~

I debated whether to follow. Kris had been gone when I awoke that morning, but returned just as we sat down to eat. My decision to remove most of his Eve route weighed on my mind, but I needed to focus on whatever drama the day had in store for me. Besides, he said I was no longer fun. Was it true? Had I become so entrenched in my job—jobs!—the fun part of me had died?

Note to self: Have fun. Be fun. But after the reindeer had recovered.

I looked at Brannoc, abandoned by Candy. Now there was someone known for fun. His exotic gorgeousness lightened my mood. “Join us,” I invited. I had concerns about Candy’s marriage, but they had nothing to do with his alleged reputation.

Cookie poured Brannoc juice. Cooper offered peanut-buttered toast. Edda declared he was “Too much skin and bones. I cook you oatmeal,” and scampered to the stove.

“Your volcano lessons,” Brannoc said to Cooper, “how’d they go?”

I’d been caught in the middle since Dad recruited Coop. I wanted to support my son, but didn’t want to betray Kris. Instead of answering, Cooper said to Mom, “Are you divorcing Grands because he ignores doctor’s orders, or because he’s a show off?”

“Both!” Her eyes glittered. “Tell me, what did Monsieur Flaunt-and-Flash do yesterday?”

“He got carried away with the volume of lava flow and almost took out Oahu’s northern half.” Shrieking, I half-crawled over the table to check his wounds. He fought me off. “I’m not hurt. Grands diverted disaster. Claimed he had deliberately created too much volcanic pressure to see if I realized the consequences of his actions.” Read More

Kringle Chapter 6 Part 3

With Christmas fast approaching, I thought why not ease you all into the spirit of the holiday with ten chapters from my novel, KRINGLE. Yes! Ten free chapters for you to enjoy running Monday through Thursday until November 16th. Hope you enjoy!

To catch up on the story I’ve added the Links to the end of this post.

~*~

“Dad, pass the peanut butter.”

Kris snapped out of his reverie to pass the jar. Across the table Holly dug joylessly into her grapefruit. Beside her, LaRoux sprinkled a yellow packet into her bowl. She had spent the night in their guest room, and probably would move in. His patience would be tested with her underfoot, but with Kingston out of the house, he would keep all comments about his ditsy mother-in-law behind locked lips.

Meanwhile, Cooper slathered enough peanut butter on his toast to mortar a wall strong enough to restrain any tsunami Father Nature might concoct. Kris wanted to ask his son about his day with Grandpa and the volcanoes, but the breakfast table vibe seemed fragile. Better to save interrogation for later.

He noticed Cookie writing in her day-planner. Among his thoughts last night had been his insensitivity when she offered to be his Santa heir. He should have considered it, mulled it over. Thanked her. Instead, he’d stomped on her heart like a barbarian.

Miss Joyous Noël was conspicuously absent. Read More

Kringle Chapter 6 Part 2

With Christmas fast approaching, I thought why not ease you all into the spirit of the holiday with ten chapters from my novel, KRINGLE. Yes! Ten free chapters for you to enjoy running Monday through Thursday until November 16th. Hope you enjoy!

To catch up on the story I’ve added the Links to the end of this post.

~*~

Kris poured them coffee. “Moore never met them, but he did meet my great-great grandfather, who influenced the poem. As you know, Dasher is my sleigh lead. Commander of the Famous Eight and the Six-In-Training.”

“I had no idea back-up reindeer existed.”

“We’ve never had to use them. The SIT’s, Nutmeg, Custard, Clover, Bonbon, Delores and Nancy are trained, but often do personal appearances in place of the Famous Eight. Dasher is…well, dashing! Handsome with velvety eyes, he moves with a grace that belies his awesome size. As with any leader he is on duty every waking minute. Dasher’s soul mate is Dancer, a petite sweetheart with a warm laugh who loves to frolic in the playground to Madonna’s Greatest Hits. She has a bond with Scotchie that Dasher envies, though he’s too secure to put the kibosh on their relationship. Even so, Dancer would never end her friendship with Scotchie.”

Robinson nodded. “I’ve heard Dancer is no shrinking violet.”

“Where Dancer is effervescent, her twin is cantankerous. Prancer isn’t a bad guy, just wired differently. When a warm breeze drifts over Grimm County, he’s funny and charming. Why his mood swings are dictated by climate is anyone’s guess. Winter is when he regurgitates his familiar gripe over Dasher being sleigh lead. Prancer thinks the guys should take turns.” Read More

Kringle Chapter 6 Part 1

With Christmas fast approaching, I thought why not ease you all into the spirit of the holiday with ten chapters from my novel, KRINGLE. Yes! Ten free chapters for you to enjoy running Monday through Thursday until November 16th. Hope you enjoy!

To catch up on the story I’ve added the Links to the end of this post.

~*~

December 22nd ~ 60:00 hours to Eve Launch

Through sour eyes Kris hunched over a bowl of what looked like what a woodchuck might chuck-up if a woodchuck ate oatmeal. No raisins, nuts, honey, brown sugar or gumdrops to sweeten the vile mush. Despite his distaste for oatmeal, he tried to choke down a bowl twice a week to stay regular. When he was regular, he was a better Santa. Cheerful, able to perform his job. But this stuff… Holly had offered him a banana, but he’d declined. She had him by the Pfeffernüsse with her divorce threat, though after tasting her oatmeal, he wondered if twenty years wasn’t enough and it was time to call it quits.

Across the table his wife struggled to unravel her hair from one of the dozen buttons rippling her plaid blouse. When the strands refused to unwind, she unbuttoned until it released. The glimpse of her cleavage reminded him of their passionate dance the night before. Yes! Of course. Holly was worth any sacrifice. Though devastated by her decision to remove all but North America from his Eve schedule, her tears had dissolved much of his resentment. He would make her happy, even if it meant eating the offal she called oatmeal. Read More

Kringle Chapter 5 Part 4

With Christmas fast approaching, I thought why not ease you all into the spirit of the holiday with ten chapters from my novel, KRINGLE. Yes! Ten free chapters for you to enjoy running Monday through Thursday until November 16th. Hope you enjoy!

To catch up on the story I’ve added the Links to the end of this post.

~*~

She crossed her arms. “I saw Dr. Havelock this afternoon.”

She knows. Confess now.

“He thinks I’m in menopause, but he won’t know until the tests come back.”

She looked as if she expected him to comment, so he said, “Hm.” His mind raced. What’s man-o-paws? Clearly she assumed he’d know.

“With respect to the reindeer poisoning… Kris, I’ve banned sugar.” She gave him time to gasp and sputter. “All manners have been destroyed. Erik has penalty instructions for anyone in possession of White Death: Public disgrace. Six months in jail. No plea bargains. That includes your peppermints, unless they’re sugar free.”

Kris clutched his beloved peppermints. “White Death. Havelock’s got your ear.”

“Someone put sugar in the oats. Scotchie said—”

“Scotchie?” Kris jumped out of bed, shamelessly naked. “How is he an authority on my reindeer? He’s our Production Manager. He oversees dolls that pee and balls that bounce. How did he know to check for sugar? I saw him at Candy’s to-do. Why didn’t he tell me? I should be the first to know. I’m friggin’ Santa Claus.”

Holly visibly struggled to hold her temper. “Be that as it may, we have problems with employee sugar addiction. After Noak’s performance this morning, don’t you agree?”

“You mean after my performance, don’t ya?” There. He’d kicked the elephant in the room right in its big ol’ keester. Holly jerked, as though struck. She appeared to brace for something big. Something bad. “What’s wrong? It is one of the kids?” He wheezed. “Did Dancer d-die?” Read More

Kringle Chapter 5 Part 3

With Christmas fast approaching, I thought why not ease you all into the spirit of the holiday with ten chapters from my novel, KRINGLE. Yes! Ten free chapters for you to enjoy running Monday through Thursday until November 16th. Hope you enjoy!

To catch up on the story I’ve added the Links to the end of this post.

~*~

Kris buried his face in his hands. “Time’s moving too fast.”

Holly patted his back. “There, there. Cooper still plays with his sock puppet, Mister Stinkytoes.”

“At least someone in this house refuses to grow up.” He hugged her. “I’m sorry. I made you my scapegoat for Candy’s enga-ga–” He swallowed hard. “Forgive me?”

“Absolutely. However your snarl about me not having supreme power over you will come up in future arguments if we don’t deal with it now. Where’d that come from?”

“Not sure. Surprised me, too. Maybe it stemmed from Erik making me feel in the way.”

“You know the first twenty-four hours are critical.”

“He called me an amateur detective.”

“He can’t afford to make mistakes. Has he found any leads?”

“No. Oh! J.J. Rime bought the Tattle, Polar Fitness and PolarPointe. And Jack Frost is back in town.”

Holly moaned. “And to think this morning all I had to be upset about was when Dad refused to eat oatmeal.”

He waited for her to mention his sugar-abuse. When she left it unspoken, he decided he didn’t want silence to underscore the memory. “You think Frost poisoned them?” Read More

Kringle Chapter 5 Part 2

With Christmas fast approaching, I thought why not ease you all into the spirit of the holiday with ten chapters from my novel, KRINGLE. Yes! Ten free chapters for you to enjoy running Monday through Thursday until November 16th. Hope you enjoy!

To catch up on the story I’ve added the Links to the end of this post.

~*~

He watched her slide out of her jeans. “Rumor has it you now test puddings with your bottom instead of your taste buds.”

She grinned. “You know me. I’m all about The Job.” She finished his schnapps. “We need to talk. But first, let’s make love.”

He hadn’t expected this. For years they’d kept the honeymoon fires simmering, mainly because Holly could go toe-to-toe with him and he found that sexy. He also never knew what she was thinking, and that made her mysterious as well as gorgeous. Then, a couple months ago, instead of affection and snappy banter, they ended their days irritated and not speaking.

Holly used Nature magick to ignite the hearth. “If you want to, that is.”

The uncertainty in her voice buckled his knees. Whatever they had to talk about had to be serious for her to disarm him with sex. Since he couldn’t remember the last time they’d had sex, he decided to sacrifice himself as a pawn for her feminine subterfuge.

Clad in shimmery-pink lingerie, his wife, whom he thought had become exceptionally beautiful over the last twenty years, reached behind her back to unclasp her bra. Read More

Kringle Chapter 5 Part 1

With Christmas fast approaching, I thought why not ease you all into the spirit of the holiday with ten chapters from my novel, KRINGLE. Yes! Ten free chapters for you to enjoy running Monday through Thursday until November 16th. Hope you enjoy!

To catch up on the story I’ve added the Links to the end of this post.

 

~*~

Wandering wind carry my spell

To the one who in my heart does dwell.

Herbs and scent in his mind shall see

Make his thoughts turn solely to me.

Kris pinched his nose and shut the window. The stuffy master bedroom stunk like designer knockoff cologne thanks to a sickly sweet breeze. He replenished his peppermint schnapps, then sprawled atop the Baroque four-poster bed. He hadn’t bothered to light the hearth. There was enough fire in his heart from thoughts of his poisoned reindeer and he didn’t trust himself with a match. He would get to the bottom of their poisoning, and when he did it would be good not to have witnesses.

He glanced at his list for Erik. Aside from Jack Frost and Krampus, a goat-horned anti-Santa who sought to replace peace and joy with fear and loathing, no one stood out with irrefutable capability. Disgusted, Kris tossed the list and reached for the Tattle. First Father Nature had lured Cooper to the Dark Side, now Candy had sacrificed herself on the pyre of fairy love. She was too young to get married. Too—he sorted and batched several adjectives to describe Candy in a single word, and finally settled on irrational, though he felt mean enough to consider stupid—too irrational to understand that by slamming the door on her education in favor of marital bliss, she forever condemned herself to a life of ‘what if’ and ‘what could have been.’ Read More

Kringle Chapter 4 Part 4

With Christmas fast approaching, I thought why not ease you all into the spirit of the holiday with ten chapters from my novel, KRINGLE. Yes! Ten free chapters for you to enjoy running Monday through Thursday until November 16th. Hope you enjoy

To catch up on the story I’ve added the Links to the end of this post.

~*~

I wasn’t hungry, and from the full crock clearly no one else had been either. There was a quarter pot of coffee left and boy was I tempted, but if I drank it, I knew today would turn into tomorrow without sleep to separate the days. I set the pebbles on the counter, then divided the chili into freezer bags.

I hadn’t seen Kris since the meeting called after Candy’s sculpture unveiling. Though test results were not expected until tomorrow, Scotchie had badgered the toxicologist, Howard Robinson, until he produced a conclusion in record time. The reindeer oats were positive for sugar, said to devastate a magickal creature’s nervous system. As Thorne had ordered Robinson to test for insect larva, I expected Scotchie to memo me tomorrow about Thorne’s incompetence. I received such memos three or four times a week, every week.

Robinson promised to work through the night to determine antidotes. He speculated they should return to full health once the toxins were purged. Thorne argued that he, being the one with the Doctorate in SuperNatural Beings, would have final say on the Famous Eight’s future health. A verbal meltdown ensued with much finger-pointing. I let them vent. Once they let off steam they could get to work. All male swagger and hypothesizing aside, there is no data on how long it would take for the reindeer to purge sugar. It could take days, weeks, months… Years.

Before we adjourned, there was one point we did agree on. Dancer had suffered a concussion. If the others could fly on Christmas Eve, a SIT reindeer would take her place. Though Kris said nothing, his expression revealed his anxiety. Tradition is the backbone of what makes Kris Kringle ‘Santa Claus.’ Read More

Kringle Chapter 4 Part 3

With Christmas fast approaching, I thought why not ease you all into the spirit of the holiday with ten chapters from my novel, KRINGLE. Yes! Ten free chapters for you to enjoy running Monday through Thursday until November 16th. Hope you enjoy!

To catch up on the story I’ve added the Links to the end of this post.

~*~

Peppermint pulled my sleigh along the winding drive toward home, the Elfin Light Committee’s version of nightfall, a shadowy soot color, now several hours old. Decorated with classic white lights and tasteful woodland greens, the Kringle residence is twenty-thousand square feet with three stories and sixty rooms assembled from castles and baronial estates that had belonged to the Kringle’s Danish, Dutch and English ancestors. Kris’s multi-great grandfather christened it Frosne Tæer: Frozen Toes. His English wife believed him when he said it translated into Frosty Wonderland.

Positioned like a podgy queen on steroids, Frosne Tæer sits between Een and Zes branches and overlooks Sinterklaas Harbor with Gichigami Lighthouse three hundred yards to the left. Grand interior spaces, breezy open-air venues, cozy nooks, blah blah, blah. It’s impossible to heat and costs a fortune to maintain.

Despite our family business, Frosne Tæer is not festooned with year-round holiday décor. When I married Kris I made real good friends with my new mother-in-law by removing the over-the-top Christmas theme Ginnie Kringle thrived on, and returning the rooms to their original beauty. I’d intermingled modern with antique English, Dutch and Danish styles, and added hundreds of antique carpets to combat the stone cold floors—what were they thinking in this climate? Read More

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