Authors: Julia Kent
Tags: #Contemporary Fiction, #Contemporary Women, #BBW Romance, #Humorous, #Romantic Comedy, #Contemporary, #Fiction, #romance, #General, #New Adult & College, #new adult, #Genre Fiction, #Literature & Fiction
“What the hell was that?” I snap. “You speak Russian to some angry photographer and next thing I know you turn into Jason Bourne!”
“You figured it out,” he deadpans.
People are golf clapping. “Go, Santa! America! America!”
“What does America even have to do with—” Amy starts to ask, but Mom cuts her off.
“All those children! Santa can’t be ruined for them!” Mom clucks, grabbing the Santa jacket and working to help Declan back in it. There isn’t much blood on the beard, and Mom dabs at it, frantic. “We need to get you back in that chair.”
“Mom’s just worried we won’t get a picture with you guys,” Amy says drolly.
“Picture?” Declan asks in a ragged voice. The mall cops come over and I walk away to answer questions. The long line makes this all tough, with a million questions that need to be addressed. Declan casts a long look my way. I can’t tell if he’s more upset about his injured nose or being left alone to converse with my mother.
I dispense with the mall security by begging for an hour to clear the line, which seems to have tripled. Declan’s peeling himself off Mom and Amy is texting. He settles in Santa’s chair to thunderous applause and I realize: we have no photographer.
As if on cue, Marsha walks past carrying some shopping bags. She comes over behind the Santa chair and reaches for her clipboard.
“I’ll take over. As long as I get to sit on Santa’s lap for an extra long time,” she says with a wink. I have no leverage here, so I just nod. Noddy the Elf.
“Hot Santa,” Amy says as I walk past him to join her, shaking her phone at me. “Word’s getting out. Look at all those women in line.”
I peer into the crowd. “They don’t have any kids with them.”
“Shouldn’t you bring a kid to see Santa?”
“I think they just want to sit in Santa’s lap and visit the North Pole, if you know what I mean,” Amy says, snickering.
“She means they want to sit on Declan’s penis,” Mom translates.
“Thanks, Mom,” I cough, “for the explanation.”
“Just being helpful! Oh, look—there’s Agnes!” Mom runs off toward the end of the increasingly long line. Agnes is a ninety-something regular in Mom’s yoga classes.
Declan is warm and gracious with each child who comes through, and if I weren’t completely gobsmacked by how helping Greg out has turned my boyfriend into a Special Ops CIA dude who speaks Russian, I would pay more attention to my ovaries. They appear to be clapping, cheering, fanning themselves and putting on makeup for a special occasion with Santa, because damn if Declan isn’t amazing with the kids.
Charming and fatherly and sweet, yet ruthlessly efficient. The perfect blend of high-powered executive and Chevy-commercial dad.
He’s made to be a father.
A giggly woman
child asks if she can sit in Santa’s lap and he says, “I’m taking all the little kids first, and then we’ll work our way through the big kids,” adding a wink.
I look through the line. There are about ten kids sprinkled in among the forty or so folks queued up. I walk out and pull the kids and grateful parents forward.
“Hot Santa is kind of a dick,” the rejected woman mumbles, walking away.
My mother hands her a candy cane and a yoga business card. “Merry Christmas!” The woman just glares and mutters to the other women in line. The single women in line thin out, about half leaving.
“Once you’re done with the kids, can senior citizens be next? This bladder isn’t as young as it used to be,” shouts a familiar voice.
“Ho ho ho,” Declan shouts, then mumbles to me, “I’ve been peed on enough. Don’t need to add Agnes to it. Do whatever she wants.”
“What is Agnes doing here?” I ask Mom, who turns out to be remarkably helpful, handing out candy canes and directing people to the pay station. Amy wanders off to huff the Lush bath products.
“I canceled yoga today when I learned you were coming here, and when they asked why there was a huge stampede of people who figured they might catch a glimpse of Declan. No one ever dreamed they’d get to sit in his lap!”
“Neither did he.”
Her eyes take in my costume. “You’re a little bigger than me, but not much. You get to keep that costume? Can I borrow it?”
Declan waves me over and I walk away without a single word, because I know why she wants to borrow it, and while costumes can be cleaned, brains can’t. Once that image is imprinted in my mind—of Mom and Dad playing Santa and the Naughty Elf—I might as well get an official Red Ryder Carbine Action 200-shot range model air rifle—
And shoot my eyes out.
We get through the kids and Declan begs for a short break. Out comes the “Santa is Feeding the Reindeer—Back in Five Minutes!” sign. Declan walks around back and stretches. The mall cops seize on the chance and come over to explain that the Russian dude was a garden-variety scammer, telling parents that for an extra $40 he’d make sure they got their pictures to them on CD on the spot. He’d pulled the same scam at five other malls this season.
And a fingerprint check showed he was part of a mafia ring, too.
“Russian? You speak Russian? We’ve been dating for how long and I don’t know this?” I bark.
He shrugs. “There’s a lot we don’t know about each other. What foreign languages do you speak?”
“Southie and Pig Latin.”
“See! I didn’t know that. You polyglot.”
The security force people leave us alone and Declan takes a minute to hydrate and just breathe without a little kid on his knee. I look down the long walkway in front of us and do a double take.
“This section really brings out the crazies,” I say.
“Your mom’s a bit weird, but crazy might be an overstatement—”
“Not her. I mean, she is, but—see that guy walking toward us?” I point to a tall, older man wearing glasses and a brown down coat. He walks slowly, shoulders hunched, and is carrying a cat in his arms.
A cat wearing reindeer antlers, and as he gets closer—
“Is that cat wearing a red nose that lights up?” Declan whispers out of the side of his mouth.
“Holy smokes!” I peep. “What a nutcase.” The guy comes closer and avoids eye contact. The area is loud and the glow of red and green Christmas lights makes everything a bit dim, but he stands out. I’ve never seen a cat so angry before, either. So grumpy. So pissed off.
So—oh my God.
Chuckles tips his eyes up at me, the red light from his battery-powered nose making his irises glow evil red, like Dracula’s cat come to kill Santa Claus and steal the Spirit of Christmas.
And, frankly, I can’t blame him.
“What are you doing to Chuckles?”
“More like what is your mother doing to my manhood,” Dad mumbles just as Mom comes over and makes a big to-do of the cat.
“Look at Chuckley-Wuckley!” Mom squeals, holding him out from her, arms stretched with a limp animal planning how to smother her in her sleep, his eyes glowing with hatred and LED-inspired evil.
“Chuckles is figuring out how to pull your liver out through your nose and snack on it while you writhe in death throes, Mom,” I say. My cat nods slowly and Dad shivers.
“He’s so cute, though! The family Christmas picture will be so perfect.” Dad cuts me a look that says
Don’t even say it
as he pulls his jacket off in the stifling mall.
But I say it.
“Family Christmas picture?” I turn fifteen again. Mom has this way of making me turn into a screaming teenager with a persecution complex. “What family Christmas picture? There will be no family Christmas picture!”
“Especially if your nip is hanging out like that,” Mom says.
Amy comes back smelling like avocado, coconut, and way too many rose hips mixed with Ralph Lauren’s Polo. Like Jamba Juice meets Milton Academy.
“Walked through the perfume counter at Macy’s, huh?” Dad asks her.
“WHAT CHRISTMAS PICTURE?” I thunder as I shove my hand down the front of my bustier.
“Is that Josh over there? In line?” Amy asks me as I wrestle my own boobs like I’m the female lead in a tentacle porn movie.
“Josh?” My old coworker? Technogeek Josh, the one I tried to throw under a bus and get Greg to call today instead of me? A red wall of fury fills me. He should be the humiliated one here, with nipple slips and peeing kids and…
I look over and sure enough, he’s in line in a group of three guys, all way too stylish to be straight. I march over, hand still down my front.
doing here?” I demand.
He looks up, face friendly. Like his friends, he’s wearing all black and grey. In a mall swimming in green and red, they’re a welcome reprieve.
“Hi, Shannon! We’re here for Hot Santa. What are you…” He and his three buddies watch me giving myself a breast exam. “Um, do you need some privacy?”
“Why are you guys in line? Do you have little kids with you?”
They instantly look uncomfortable. “No,” Josh confesses. “We’re here to see Hot Santa.” He, like my sister, holds up his phone. The same damn picture of Declan in red suspenders.
“Where did you learn about this?” I demand.
“Jessica Coffin,” Josh and his friends intone.
“You realize you’re about to sit on my boyfriend’s lap!”
Josh goes from embarrassed to mildly horrified. Then kind of interested. “Really?
is Hot Santa?”
“Declan McCormick?” one of his friends asks, fanning himself. “Oh, hot, hot, smoking hot Santa! I’ve got a lump of coal he can turn into a diamond by letting me shove it in—”
“Yes!” I shout. “Mine!” I growl savagely. “MINE!” My girls are in proper place, but the g-string cuts into my ass, giving me a Brazilian. It’s like a built-in Epilady string.
“That is hot,” Josh says in an admiring voice.
“No. Just…no.” I can feel a complete public meltdown coming on.
“You wear jealousy well,” one of his friends murmurs. He looks at his phone. “Hey! Coupon for Lush!” They all skitter off and I wonder what I’m missing with this whole Lush craze.
I’m not about to find out, though. Something far more lush is in my immediate future.
A strong, insistent hand circles my forearm. “Ho, ho, ho, little elf, Santa needs your help,” Declan says in a jocular voice. A bunch of kids, all of Josh’s friends, and ten women in line wave at Santa, who is now dragging me off to the employee break room, where he slams the dented metal door shut and deadbolts it. He rips the beard off, slips out of the Santa jacket, and—
Hot Santa’s hot mouth is on me. Hands roam over the slutty elf costume, soon finding their way inside the bustier, and Declan is
just readjusting my headlights. He pulls one breast out and tongues the nipple, making it rock hard.
“We can’t have sex in here!”
“You’d prefer I ravish you on Santa’s chair, in public?” He pulls my other breast out and sucks lightly. My entire body tightens and twangs like a plucked guitar string. “Kinky.” He pulls back and gives my body a visual once-over. “I
“I’m not having sex in the Christmas Village of a mall!” My words come out more like a moan than a protest, because his mouth feels so damn good on my caged breasts, the slick heat of his warm tongue forcing my blood to pound through me like the 1812 orchestra, cannons at the ready for the big finish.
“Then this will have to do.” He pulls the tight costume down my body, the cold, painted concrete wall behind me stinging my shoulders, back, and hips. His mouth is all over me, his chest pressed against my belly, those suspenders rubbing against just the right parts as he deliciously peels me out and I’m standing there in nothing but fishnet thigh-highs.
“Oh my God, Shannon,” he whispers, eyes eating me up. “You are so beautiful.” My red nub is beeping so loudly it sounds like Rudolph’s nose. I grab the red suspenders and slide them off each shoulder and he drops trou, then he drops
, and oh, Santa baby—
“I’m going to explode if I can’t get in you, Shannon,” he hisses as his naked body becomes a wall of hot, silky flesh pressed into mine.
I reach between his legs and cradle him. “I can tell you’re Santa,” I murmur.
“Santa’s sac.” I make a move that makes him groan and chuckle.
“What does that—”
“It’s so big because he only comes once a year.”
“You’re making Santa scrotum jokes when we’re—oh, you naughty girl.” And he pulls back and spanks me, hard the sound like a thunderclap of erotic dreams come to life. Somehow a condom appears in his hand. Perhaps it’s a little holiday magic.
“That stings!” But I open my legs, and he’s in me in seconds. Jokes fade, our bodies releasing all the pent-up lust and frustration.
“You are so hot,” he mutters in my ear, thighs tensing, his body primed for climax. We have mere minutes, and while I normally need more foreplay than one spank and a ball fondle (for him), my orgasm is at the ready, eager for Santa to empty his sac at my place.
The friction and the slick of our bodies working together, all fire and need, the clench of his hands on my hips, the slow drag of my fingernails against his back are almost enough.
“Speak Russian to me,” I beg, and he does, making my core clench instantly, his tongue on my earlobe the final touch that makes me burst into fireworks. His body tenses and I feel his heat pour into me, even through the condom, his shudder and hoarse cry caused by me. Me.
As we slump against the wall, the snickering starts.
“Oh, Santa!” I moan.
“Oh, Slutty Elf!” he groans.
I burst out laughing so hard I push him out of me as he finishes, giggles overcoming us as we give in to the absolute absurdity of the past hour and a half.
“You’re amazing, you know that?” he whispers in my ear, fingers grazing my bare shoulder, tracing a line down to my nipple. His hot breath tickles my hair as he kisses me slowly, finally finding my mouth.
“You aren’t too bad yourself, Santa,” I whisper when we break apart, warmed through.
“Chuckles in a reindeer costume,” he laughs, reaching down to remove the condom, tie it off, and throw it in a trash can next to…another condom. Oh, gross. Who has sex in a mall employee break room—