My memories of Christmas growing up are precious to me. I was fortunate that my parentâ€™s families got along well, and I got to spend the time with both sides.
My dad loved to entertain, so everybody would gather at my house on Christmas Eve. Iâ€™d wake up that morning to the scent of brisket and potatoes wafting through our home, eagerly making hourly trips to check out the presents piled under the tree. Throughout the day, Iâ€™d help mom around the house and daddy would supervise and taste test.
About an hour before guests arrived weâ€™d clean up. I had a Christmas dress, one my mom handmade, usually velvet, with white tights and shiny, black shoes. Excited, Iâ€™d sit on the sofa by a big, picture window next to the Christmas tree and wait for the first ring of the doorbell.
Once everybody had arrived, weâ€™d socialize, ate tons of food, and then after our tummies were ready to burstâ€”the best part, open the gifts! The party would continue after, usually running late into the night, but Iâ€™d pile up my stash, take it to my room for inspection, and get ready to watch White Christmas.
Christmas Day, everyone would meet at my grandmaâ€™s. This day would be a bit more subdued, though we still prepared lots of food. My grandmother lived in the country. After lunch, the men would bring their choice weaponry, go outside, and shoot at made up targets, while the women sat around a wood burning stove to catch up on the latest.
I was lucky to be raised around such wonderful, warm people with such an amazing sense of family. Most arenâ€™t here anymore and sadly those gatherings no longer happen nor do any of the traditions.
With the exception of one.
I never miss White Christmas. Canâ€™t wait to watch it tonight.
Check out my newest romance/suspense release Tomorrow Doesn’t Matter Tonight
Within twenty-four hours, Katie Drapier has lost her job, become a murder suspect in her former boss’s death, and run into her school girl crush, Jack Pharrell, who stomped on her heart fourteen years ago.
Jackson Pharrell is down on his luck. Nothing seems to be going his way. Things go from bad to worse when he discovers a dead body, who turns out to be the former boss of an old friend’s pesky sister. Plagued with guilt from the past, Jack feels obliged to help her find the murderer while ducking a murder charge, even if it means breaking the law. Together, they dodge police, the real killer, and the growing heat between them. The plan is to rise above their woes and get on with their lives. Falling in love is not an option.
â€œI have a dumb question.â€ He glanced at her. â€œWhy did you bring the knife with you tonight? Whatâ€™s your motive?â€
Katie stopped in mid-bite. â€œI donâ€™t have a motive. Iâ€™m confused how to handle this. I thought you might give me some advice.â€
He shrugged. â€œReport the break in and turn it over to the police would seem the logical way to go.â€
â€œLogical? I want to stay far away from the police right now. They may somehow link this to Hazelâ€™s murder. â€œ
â€œAvoiding them doesnâ€™t solve your problem. If youâ€™re so nervous about talking with them, take counsel with you.â€
She slammed her utensil onto the table and glared across at him. â€œWill you knock off the lawyer bit, legal boy? I got it. Iâ€™ll get an attorney, but right now I need some reassurance from you.â€
Jack sat back in his chair and said through clenched teeth, â€œA little louder, please. The kitchen staff didnâ€™t hear the last part.â€
He leaned forward and whispered, â€œYouâ€™re yelling really loud. The whole place is staring at us.â€
Katie glanced around. Sheâ€™d raised her voice too high, and the entire restaurant watched them. She smiled timidly and spoke to the crowd.
â€œCommunication exercises. Weâ€™re in coupleâ€™s therapy.â€
â€œAaahhhâ€™sâ€ floated through the room and heads bobbed as the patrons returned to their meals.
Jack stabbed his meat. â€œNice save.â€