For another #CSSundays post, I’ve got one of my own. Coming soon is a holiday story that makes me smile no matter how many times I’ve re-read it.
A holiday tale
“So, Uncle John,” Mark said in a disturbingly gleeful voice, “your street seems a bit brighter this season.”
John barely stopped himself from pushing the boy off his chair. Being in middle school made the kid awful cheeky. Instead, he settled an uncle-glare on him. Which was pitiful.
Mark snickered and looked back at his cards.
This was what John got for spending the evening away from the monstrosity known as his neighborhood. Up until this year, it had been simple. Nobody waved their religious or mystical hats at the world in some strange light spectacular. Until Kaden Melling moved in. Even the thought of the annoying elf living next door had an effect, and not specifically one he planned on.
The man annoyed the ever-living hell out of him. And was drop-dead cute to boot. At the housing board meeting in September, when holiday decorations were brought up, John had been prepared to stomp them down just like he did every year. The last thing he wanted was for strangers to drive down their streets oohing and ahhing at the horrendous light displays that were more likely to blow the grid and their power for days. Unfortunately that was the first day he met Kaden. He was in his midthirties, with a mess of reddish-blond hair on top of his head, bright blue eyes, and the sweetest smile on the planet. Not to mention a cock that showed through his jeans. Damn, if that thing was real…. To avoid drooling at the man, John didn’t say a word. Imagine his surprise when he found out later that the entire housing board voted to make it an extravaganza.
And now he had to deal with the vast amount of lightage going on.
It was the fifth of December and he had, so far, received three messages from the board noting that he hadn’t put up any holiday decorations yet. As there was no way to send back his honest reaction in the form of his middle finger, he had ignored them. Damned Kaden Melling.
“Go fish,” he said.
Mark snickered again, and John smirked.
“You know what you should do,” his brother-in-law, Adam, said as he took a seat at the table with a beer in his hand. “Fight fire with fire.”
“Oh, I’m sure someone’s house will catch on fire this season,” John said with a grunt, “with as many lights as are pulling from our old transformer. But damn. Most of the houses went for a few strings of lights. A couple put up a Santa thing or two. But next door? It’s the Christmas display from hell.” Mark snickered as he continued. “Thirty blow-up things, dancing penguins, a menorah that I suppose will light up during Chanukah. Not to mention that he’s got the whole damned thing attuned to music,” John spat and picked up his beer. “Enough to drive a man to drink. I’m gonna need blackout curtains.”
“It’s festive,” Therese, his sister, said as she waddled into the kitchen. Eight and a half months pregnant with her fourth child, she was a glowing mother-to-be—and not to be messed with. John figured out during her other pregnancies that the best way to deal with her when she was pregnant was not to argue. It would get nasty. She would cry, and he would feel like a heel and end up apologizing himself into a corner.
After a long sigh, he drank the rest of his beer just as Mark laid down the last of his cards.
John blinked at him and then at the eight cards in his hand. “I’ve been had.”
“Ha!” Mark said as he stood and did a victory dance. “I win. I win. Which means I get anything I want. Right?” Soft blue eyes blinked at him out of a far-too-adorable face. Mark had John wrapped around his tiny finger from the moment he was born. John had no ability to refuse.
“Yep. What do you want? Wanna see that magical movie again?” Mark shook his head. “Need a new video game?” He shook his head again as Therese shot him a glare. She wasn’t a fan of realistic video games. She was no fun whatsoever. “All right. I’m out. What do you want?”
Mark beamed at him. “Let’s out-decorate your neighbor.”
Former US Marine John Ving hates everything about holiday displays: they’re tacky, they waste energy, and they’re an eyesore. So what does his new neighbor do? He sets up the holiday spectacle from hell, and he doesn’t seem to care which holiday—he has a menorah, a baby Jesus, a Santa, and everything in between. Not to mention it’s swathed in enough lights his house is probably visible from space.
High-school teacher Kaden loves the holidays, and huge light displays on his lawn make his heart glow. He’d love to share some cheer—and maybe some kinky fun—with his smoking hot neighbor John. Odd things start to happen to his displays and just as he begins to think life is going his way, with the holidays and with John, a Grinch destroys everything.
It’s gonna take the display-hating John to set things right—and what he has planned might blow Kaden’s mind.
About the Author:
Thianna Durston is a writer by day and supernova by night. Or at least that’s what the faeries tell her. And who is she to deny those pesky *cough* lovely little creatures?
She lives in the Pacific Northwest, though her heart belongs elsewhere. In the meantime, until she can return to the place she calls home, she happily lives in a city that still thinks it’s a small town. Thankfully, it has given her muse lots of amusing places to start a story.