Comet’s First Christmas

I’ve been hard at work on Comet’s First Christmas. We’re halfway through edits and I can’t wait for you to read this and see the cover. I’m planning a cover reveal for when I can’t take it anymore because I’m so excited.

Here’s a sneak peek at the opening

Pulling Santa’s sleigh is as prestigious as it gets. When I trained as a potential team member, I knew the odds of ever actually pulling the sleigh were low. But I did let myself fantasize about how one day there would be a knock at my door, and Rudolph would be there to activate me.

Never once did I picture it happening in December.

That would be insane.

I was studying in human form when the doorbell to my home rang. It was probably my mom, trying to get me to date some friend’s daughter. I went to the door, expecting a guilt trip and “the perfect woman” for me to date and eventually produce little calves with for my mother to spoil. I nabbed a handful of hay and took a big mouthful before I nudged the door open with my foot.

It wasn’t my mother.

The reindeer who’d pawed at my door was Rudolph. Rudolph! She wasn’t wearing any regalia, but I’d been a huge fan for years. She used to be Prancer, but became Rudolph when the previous Rudolph retired—job names were permanent, the people filling those positions were not.

I realized I was (a) staring and (b) had a mouth full of hay.

“Excuse me,” I mumbled through the hay, and I hastily ate it. I wished I was in my reindeer form—my human face was burning with humiliation.

“Claudia?”

I forced down the last gulp of hay, feeling the less well-chewed bits scrape my throat as the unpleasant bite made its way down my gullet.

“Y—yes? Am I in trouble?”

Had I posted something online that was in poor taste? Had I done something to disqualify myself as a potential? My brain seized up with anxiety, and I couldn’t find a clear thought.

Rudolph laughed. “No, that was my first thought when I was called up, too, though.”

Wait, what? Called up?

“Excuse me?” I was so confused.

“Claudia, you’re being called up. You’re being asked to help guide the sleigh. Comet can’t fly this year,” Rudolph said.

The world both turned to static. It made my brain pulse.

“Calling me up?” My voice sounded far away, and the world had suddenly gone from static into stark relief. Nothing made sense. Nothing.

Rudolph whuffed in irritation. “Yes, calling you up. Report to the barn in an hour. Unless you’re not interested…” Her voice trailed off, and she tossed her antlers.

“I am! I am interested!” I had to get it out before the opportunity was taken away from me. “I want to!”

Rudolph snorted with amusement. “Okay, you want to do it. Good. Report to the barn in an hour,” she repeated and left. Before she got too far from my door, she turned back. “You’re going to want to hurry up. Only twenty-three days left until the Big Show.” She leapt in the air and bounded away.

Happy Pride!

In honor of Pride Weekend here in San Francisco, here are all of my queer stories, for free!

A Reindeer by Any Other Name (North Pole Chronicles #2)–m/m–He just gave the most sacred word at the Pole air quotes. Is this love?

Comet 2.0 (North Pole Chronicles #3)—f/f—The new Comet has no time for distractions with only twenty-three days until Christmas, but falls head over hooves for Jillian.

Love is a Virus—f/f—Captain Lily Dawes should be focused on the illness that is incapacitating her ship.  If only Ensign Patel weren’t so tempting…

Keep the Shoes On (Flash Fiction)—f/f