I love Christmas, I really, really do but I am not the kind of person who puts her tree up in November. I like Christmas at Christmas time and groan when I see Christmas cards in shops in August and decorations in October.
However, I can always be tempted by a ‘proper’ Christmas shop. You know the kind that is full to the brim with ornaments and trees and snowmen and reindeer and is full of festive flavour every single day of the year. For some reason in my mind that’s okay.
There’s a lovely Christmas shop in Stratford Upon Avon which I love looking round. I’ve got a special ornament for my tree from there. I picked it up in February I do believe! So when I was thinking of ideas for my Total-E-Bound Christmas story I remembered the Christmas store I loved and transplanted it to Lincoln.
Here’s the blurb for Always Christmas in Lincoln:
Felicity hates Christmas. It reminds her of a traumatic event from her childhood. She thinks the Permanent Christmas shop is tacky, with its windows full of trees and tinsel all year round and would rather it disappeared from her picturesque home town.
When she discovers that Carl, who she lusts over every time she sees him in the tea rooms, is in fact the owner of Ho, Ho, Ho! She’s not quite sure what to think. It takes a sexy meeting in the middle of a fake winter wonderland to make her realise the advantages of Christmas in the middle of summer.
As time passes, Carl and Felicity indulge in more sexy liaisons but as Christmas approaches Felicity doubts whether she is anything more than a sensual distraction for the festive shop owner and when her handsome ex, Sean, sweeps into town on a quest to win her back she finds she has a tough decision to make.
Can Carl and his Christmas cheer win over her hardened heart?
And an excerpt from within the Christmas shop in the middle of Summer:
“I guess I should be going,” I sighed. “Not that I want to go out there again—it’s so cool and refreshing in here.”
“Then stay. I’d be grateful of the company while I finish putting together my North Pole.”
“Well, if you’re sure…”
“Yes, yes, stay. I could do with a second opinion on where to place my candy canes.”
“All right,” I agreed. “Can I give you a hand since I’m here anyway?”
“Well, go on then. I’m used to doing them on my own, but I’ve seen your window displays and they’re always gorgeous. Can you organise the penguins and polar bears for me?”
“Sure.” I smiled, shut the laptop and picked up a polar bear. It’s not often a person gets to say that, I suppose. We chatted amicably as we positioned and re-positioned soft toys, ornaments and gingerbread houses. I’d not felt so relaxed and happy for a long while. The loneliness had sunk into my soul and I’d barely even recognised it. As I pondered what that meant for me and my life, I miscalculated how far forward I needed to lean to place my singing, dancing penguin, and I slipped. I knocked into Carl, yelped and thankfully landed on the soft toys. Carl’s landing wasn’t quite so soft, since he ended up on top of me.
“Oh, fu—I’m so sorry.”
“It’s fine, it’s fine.” Carl pushed himself up, but I was still very aware of his pelvis pressing against mine. “Don’t worry, accidents happen.”
“I’m sorry, I’ll pay for anything I’ve broken, I’ll put everything back in just the place it was…”
Carl kissed me.
It was far more complex than that, but at that moment my mind went blank and I just couldn’t think. His lips were on mine. They were plump, hot and very skilled. He took my breath away with just the gentlest undulations. I wrapped my arms around him without thought; pulled him close and let out all the passion that had built up inside me. We broke apart and took ragged breaths before our lips pulled us back together again. Our eyes were open and I could see that he was holding back just a little bit, nervous about whether this was what I wanted. I was sure he’d see the same emotions in the sea of my green eyes.
It struck me as funny that two grown adults lip-locked together still seemed so hesitant. I think he felt the smile cross my lips, because he turned up the heat. He rolled to his side and pulled me over on top of him. I laughed, then groaned because I felt the significant bump rising from his crotch. I was now somewhat in control and after a moment, a very brief moment of doubt, I reached out to undo the buttons on his shirt. His fingers crept up my thighs in response.
I kissed down the outline of his jaw; he moved a hand to cup one of my buttocks. I finished unbuttoning him and he clasped me from the other side, so I was surrounded by his touch and aroused by his gentle squeezes. I continued my kiss trail down over his chest. It was a strong chest, not bursting with muscles—that does nothing for me anyway—but steely, with the kind of muscles that aren’t showy but get the job done well enough, thank you.
So next time you see a Christmas shop pop in and remember me and my Christmas story.
Hope you have a lovely time this festive season!
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