Size: 5.00 x 8.00 in
Peter Warfield wanted a Christmas like none before. A celebration of putting the past behind them. Leaving Bradley Warfield and Moses Lee buried in the past. A new tradition of love and happiness for future generations.
But, no one was cooperating.
You are invited to celebrate the holidays with Peter, Sally and their daughter, Lily, at the Warfield Manor. There’s no murder to solve or a criminal to catch, but there are secrets to be revealed.
Justin Warfield and Marcus Drummond are speaking or telling anyone else what is going on. Damien Fitzgerald and Robert Wyler have been out of the country but is that really the truth. Sally’s been trying to tell Peter something important for weeks but he’s so wrapped up in Christmas, she can’t get through to him.
Catch up with the rest of the Warfield extended family: Richard Brooks, Daisy Lee and their son Alexander, Krystal Smith, Winnie, Michaels and all the rest. One thing’s for sure, it will be a Christmas the Warfield’s will never forget.
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Pairings: M-F, M-M
Heat Level: 1
Romantic Content: 4
Ending: Click here to reveal
Character Identities: Gay, Straight
Protagonist 1 Age: 36-45
Protagonist 2 Age: 26-35
Word Count: 20000
Setting: Beaufort North Carolina USA
Languages Available: English
Series Type: Continuous / Same Characters
“Come on, Marcus. What could be so important in Atlanta that you can’t come home for Christmas?” Peter was losing his temper with his best friend.
“I don’t think it’s a good time. Not right now.”
“You haven’t been home since the end of October. What the hell is going on with you and Justin? He’s been holed up in his office and won’t talk to anybody.”
Justin wouldn’t explain what was going on, and now Marcus was stalling too. Hadn’t the last four years shown them anything? The two idiots were meant to be together, and they had certainly suffered to get to that point, so why would they let it all slip away now? Maybe he should try a different tactic.
“I’ll think about it, Peter, but I can’t make any promises. Give my love to Sally and Lily.” The line went silent.
Peter lay his cell phone on the desk and looked up to find Sally watching him.
“He’s not talking either?” she asked.READ MORE
Peter’s gaze followed Sally as she tidied what was once his father’s home office. It was now more of a playroom for Lily. Her toys were strewn about, covering nearly every inch of the place. He smiled, thinking of his precious daughter.
She was old enough this year to be really excited about the upcoming holidays. Lily pointed out every toy she saw in TV commercials, claiming that each was her favorite. Peter loved his little family, and nothing would please him more than having a Christmas in this house, like there had never been when he was a kid. One filled with joy, laughter, and family.
Sally had done a great job decorating Warfield Manor, with Winnie’s help. Every room was bursting with the scent of pine and the bright reds and deep greens of poinsettias. A nine-foot tree stood in the corner by the fireplace in the main parlor, decorated with gold and silver. There was a special ornament near the top with a picture of Michaels in it. A sweet sadness crossed Peter’s mind at the thought of his long-time housekeepers, Michaels and Winnie, who were more like family. Winnie’s beloved husband had departed this world two years ago. His death had left a hole in all their hearts, but Winnie had never really recovered from the loss. She’d seemed to grow feeble overnight.
These days, Winnie spent her time telling the new housekeeper, Gertie, how to do her job. Though, she still insisted on doing Sunday dinner. She had big plans for Christmas this year, too, and promised it would be a meal we wouldn’t forget.
“Peter.” Sally interrupted his thoughts. “You can’t make them come. I know it means a lot to you, but you might just have to accept that they aren’t going to be here.”
“It doesn’t make any sense.” He picked up one of Lily’s dolls and handed it to Sally as he stood. “If they are having a problem, they should be with family. We can help.”
“Or it feels like we’re interfering?”
“Me? Interfere? What are you talking about?” Peter huffed.
Sally chuckled and kissed his cheek. “There’s something I’ve been meaning to talk—”
The phone rang, stopping Sally midsentence.
“Hang on a sec.” Peter reached for the phone. “Peter Warfield.”
“Hey, Peter,” Damien Fitzgerald said. “I just wanted to let you know that Robert and I should be back in the country the week before Christmas. And thanks again for letting him go with me on this assignment. We’re looking forward to seeing everyone for the holidays.”
“Great! I’m glad you guys will make it. And tell Robert, that’s his last vacation for a while.” Peter laughed. “See you guys in a couple of weeks. Bye.”
Damien was quiet for a long moment, but finally said bye and broke the connection.
“Well, that’s two!”
“I’m glad they’ll make it home in time,” Sally answered, then said, “Peter…”
“Mommy, where are you?” Lily’s voice echoed in the hall outside the door.
“We’re in here, sweetheart,” Peter answered.
Lily bounded into the room, tripping over a small dollhouse on the floor. She wailed as her knee collided with the hard plastic. Peter scooped her up in his arms while Sally checked out their distressed little girl. There was no blood, so she would be fine.
After Peter wiped away her tears and tickled her to make her forget the boo-boo, Sally took her to the kitchen to find a snack and a glass of milk.
It was hours later, when Peter was at the hotel, that he remembered Sally had wanted to tell him something, and he wondered what it was.COLLAPSE