Mr. Jingle Bells | Leta Blake
Home for the Holidays #3
Release Date: November 1st, 2021
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Opposites attract as frosty business partners become fake boyfriends in this Christmas gay romance!
Playing fake boyfriends starts their sleigh ride into love!
After an emergency forces Ashton Sellers from his apartment, all he wants for Christmas is new lipgloss, zero contact from his abusive family, and a place to stay for the holidays. Cue his business partner begrudgingly taking him in.
Walker’s a fuddy-duddy with no sense of fun, but he does have a safe, warm home with four adorable dogs and delicious food on the table.
If it turns out Walker’s also a secret softy with a tender side and a hot body beneath his endless parade of golf shirts? Great, good, cool. And if Walker wants Ashton to pretend to be his boyfriend for his sister’s Christmas-themed wedding? Awesome, amazing.
Could Walker be the safe haven Ashton missed out on as a child? Could they be falling in love for real?
But when Ashton uncovers a painful mistake in Walker’s past, it hits too close to home. As the jingle bells quiet and the snow settles, will Ashton be able to forgive Walker, or will their relationship be over before it ever truly begins?
Mr. Jingle Bells is a gay Christmas story by Leta Blake featuring f, and a taffy-sweet happy ending. It’s set in the Home for the Holidays universe, which began with Mr. Frosty Pants, but can be read as a standalone.
Content warnings for childhood abuse, past addiction issues, PTSD episodes, and gambling.
Hearing Ashton’s name, Walker froze in place. When he looked up, he almost couldn’t breathe. Ashton wore a pair of tight, black pants that cupped his ass and package, and a soft-looking, gold blouse beneath a black, faux-military jacket covered with gold and red trim.
He carried a Starbucks cup, like every morning, and, in the winter light from the big windows, he looked stunning. Absolutely breathtaking. What with his pale skin, dark hair, and all that black, gold, and red contrasting so perfectly. He looked like a model. Or a famous actor. He looked unreal. It was maddening.
Walker wished they’d instituted a dress code back when he, Casey, Ashton, and Nicole had met with their business attorney to draft all their other office policies. At the time, he’d barely known Ashton and hadn’t realized they’d need to prohibit Ashton’s entire wardrobe due to the risk of it sending Walker into a dazed and confused state nearly every single day. For fuck’s sake! How the man dressed, how he talked with that little lisp, the way he held his hands and moved his hips…none of that was Walker’s business. Why couldn’t he stop noticing it?
“Come here! You have to draw for Secret Santa!” Kayla said.
Ashton released a soft squeal of joy and rushed forward to shove his free hand into Kayla’s proffered bowl. Walker stayed only long enough to witness the overly dramatic production Ashton made of swirling the remaining four papers around before choosing one. Without waiting to see Ashton’s reaction to the name he’d chosen, Walker stalked off, his skin prickling with unwarranted irritation.
Once safely inside his lightly cluttered office, Walker shut the door and dropped his lunch on his desk. Settling into his ergonomic chair, he folded the piece of paper with Ashton’s name on it into a tiny square and slipped it into his desk drawer. He couldn’t quite bring himself to throw it away. It felt rude somehow. Ashton might make Walker feel confused and agitated but he still deserved better than the trash can.
Hoping the spicy banh mi wrap would distract him, Walker took a bite. Unfortunately, his tension didn’t dissipate, but at least he was sweating now from the spice and not from a riot of unwanted emotions over Ashton Sellers.
Why did he feel this way?
It wasn’t as if he were attracted to Ashton. Walker could never want a man like that—all feminine and glamorous, all gut-churningly beautiful. No. Walker liked women who were stereotypically feminine, and men who were, well, stereotypically masculine. Thickly muscled. Hairy in the right places. Button-ups during the week, and Polo shirts and golf shorts on the weekends. A beer drinker. A golfer.
Always a golfer.
Walker winced. His last boyfriend had been a traveling golf pro. Sebastian had spent most of their short relationship on tour. He’d never been around when Walker wanted him, much less needed him. He’d been only so-so in bed. But he’d ticked most of Walker’s boxes of someone worthy of interest, and they’d had a good run. Until it was over. That was always the way with the men Walker dated.
Not much work but not much reward either.
About the Author
Author of the bestselling book Smoky Mountain Dreams and the fan favorite Training Season, Leta Blake’s educational and professional background is in psychology and finance, respectively. However, her passion has always been for writing. She enjoys crafting romance stories and exploring the psyches of made up people. At home in the Southern U.S., Leta works hard at achieving balance between her day job, her writing, and her family.
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