A paperback will also be available a few days after the digital release.
This is the story of a family Christmas, from the time of unboxing the decorations to the night when the wads of wrapping are cleared away and leftovers are sent home.
Two generations of women prepare the Christmas holiday for their Brazen Bulls MC family. From the matriarch to the newest addition, each woman does her part to make the holiday a celebration of their love and unity—a love that shines in bright times and dark, and a unity that keeps them all strong no matter how furious the storms around them.
This is the story of the women who make the family and keep it whole.
“Marv, no! I just cleaned this room!”
Making his sad puppy eyes at her, Marv spit out the decapitated head of a stuffed bunny and scooted, shamefaced, back from the scene of the crime. Rose, his sister from another mister, lay in her bed by the hearth, front paws crossed like a perfect angel. But there was a puff of stuffing stuck in her jowls.
At least it wasn’t another Christmas ornament. She’d been repairing the tree twice a day since they’d put it up. As usual.
With a sigh, Willa snatched the soggy bits of destroyed dog toy from the freshly vacuumed area rug. “Where’s the squeaker? Did one of you eat it again?”
Grumbling, she got down on her knees and checked under the furniture. Not under the sofa, or Rad’s chair, or the otto—
Rose shifted in her bed and let loose either the squeakiest fart on record or sufficient evidence to convict. Still on her knees, Willa crawled over, got a face full of pittie tongue, and found the squeaker under Rose’s muscular ass. Rose tried to save her treasure but failed.
“You two are my problem children! And that’s saying something!” Willa snapped, getting back to her feet. She ignored the creaking of her knees and the discomfort under the creaking. Getting old fucking sucked, if anybody was asking.
“You know,” Rad said, and Willa looked up to see her man leaning against the wall at the entrance to the family room, “Zach grew up in this house. He knows what it looks like on its best day and its worst day. You don’t have to go through all this fuss for him. Or make me go through it.”
Willa ignored his point and asked something more important. “Speaking of, did you get that drip in the boys’ bathroom fixed?”
He rolled his eyes, and Willa weighed the pros and cons of making him pay for that. “Yes, boss. Got my whole list done.”
Her hands full of soggy corpse, she crossed the room. “Lyra’s only been here once—and anyway, I want everything nice. We don’t see Zach very much anymore. It’s always a special occasion when we do.”
“He was here in October,” Rad, clearly cruisin’ for a bruisin’, pointed out.
“For a funeral. This is Christmas. Don’t be contrary, Conrad. I know you’re just as excited as I am.”
Laughing, he caught her arm and pulled her close. After a quick kiss, he took the dead bunny from her. “I got this. Lyra texted you, by the way. Your phone’s on the kitchen counter, and I saw it come in. They’re about an hour out.”
“Oh, wow! That’s early. Maybe I should get dinner started now.” Jake and Petra were coming for dinner as well. Both the boys and their old ladies, home all at once. A full dinner table again. Finally.
“No. You should go get a glass of wine and sit down for a second.”
“I will. I need to vacuum in here again.”
“Woman, you exhaust me sometimes. I’ll vacuum. You sit the fuck down for second.”
She smirked. “Are you bossing me around?”
“If only I could.” His hands now full of gooey stuffie fluff, he used his elbow to give her a gentle push out of the room, ahead of him. “Wine. Chair. Now.”
“That’s a pretty solid effort at bossing me around.”
“Did it work?”
“Who can tell?” She gave him a saucy shrug.
And then she went into the kitchen, got a glass of wine, and sat down at the island.
©2022 Susan Fanetti