Shayne had a good life. It was not perfect but it was good. The best part of it was his best friend and lover. That was until Gabe said ‘I love you’. A bad reaction to the situation has left Shayne alone for Christmas with no idea where Gabe might be. With his friends having yelled some sense into him, Shayne is off to bring Gabe home for Christmas. But it might take a real Christmas miracle for Shayne to get back the man he truly loves.
The sudden downpour of hail was unexpected. It was Christmas Eve. The world should be covered in snow and filled with lights. Instead, there was rain and a power outage. Shayne glanced at his watch for a moment and realized that it was now 12:01. One minute into Christmas. He stuffed his hands back into his pockets. The leather jacket gave little protection from the cold rain that had managed to slide down his neck. A small part of him wanted to yell at the world for his bad luck and punch a hole into the first snowman he came across.
Not Frosty’s fault that you are an ass.
Shayne slid his hand over the edge of his phone, knowing that all he had to do to get out of the situation was call either of his roommates. The first two numbers on his speed dial made them only a button away. Either Beau or Gabe would pick him up in a minute. But he wasn’t ready for the lecture from Beau about his poor behavior or timing. There would be an apology expected from him at the end. Not going to happen.
Gabe would not say a word. The man would stare straight ahead at the road, focused on the hail and any unexpected obstacles that might appear. No words about how he’d ruined Christmas Eve, Christmas, his life, or their weird makeshift family. No, Gabe would be calm and collected. He would leave Shayne to figure it out all by himself. Even if Shayne never apologized, Gabe would have forgiven him just for calling. That kind of friendship and compassion made Shayne more pissed. So not going to happen.
“I found you.” The loud yell right next to Shayne’s ear had him cursing before he turned to look at the haunting voice.
Amya stood right in front of him. The white ghostly aura around her was an almost thankful sight in the blackened street. Her arms were crossed tight over her long bright pink shirt that made it to her knees. The grey leggings and sneakers were the only other clothing she had on, and if she wasn’t a ghost, it would have left her freezing. Shayne watched as Amya played with her long strawberry blonde hair while she looked him over. It was a habit she did when she was unsure of her next move.
“Why are you here?” Shayne regretted how cold his voice sounded. He didn’t mean to sound so dark, especially to her. She was a sweet girl who had a hard life and afterlife.
“Because you stormed out of the house with your fangs in a twist. Because there is a pissed off werewolf and a depressed warlock at the house on Christmas. It is Christmas, Shayne!”
“Vampires don’t celebrate Christmas.” Shayne knew his excuse wasn’t going to work—it sounded weak even to his own ears.
“Well I do, and so does Beau.”
“Yeah, well, Gabe has some holiday with candles, chanting, and ancestors. I don’t really know what it is. But that’s not the point, we all want you home to celebrate together. Christmas, not Christmas, just be together at the house.”
Shayne kicked a can on the sidewalk and watched the rain hit it. He wanted to tell her what Gabe celebrated, how he had not celebrated Christmas in one hundred and twenty years, that he had even bought them all gifts to show support, but he just watched the rain that was soaking through his shoes.
“What happened that has you out here in the cold?”
Shayne pulled his leather jacket close and breathed in the rich herbal sent that came from Gabe, who’d worn it the day before. The smell made him feel almost warm. “Gabe said he loved me.” The words made him seem weak and pathetic.
Amya looked confused, but her next words were overly passionate. “And that deserves a vampire freak out at midnight on Christmas Eve?”
Shayne watched the rain fall, unable to touch Amya’s ghostly form. He pulled his jacket close, knowing it wouldn’t help to warm him. He had been cold for a long time now.
“It messed everything up.” Shayne tried to keep his voice even without emotion. It didn’t work.