Monday, December 6, 2021

Get Sweet Fire Christmas by Jessica McBrayer FREE



A kitten started it all. A hot NHL captain and a sweet but strong veterinarian found their way together in Jude's Sweet Fire. Sweet Fire Christmas is a bonus holiday novella.










Chapter 1. Megan

 I couldn’t believe it was almost Christmas. I was busy making Christmas cookies in our beautiful kitchen, watching the Savannah version of snow—heavy rain—come down. One of my apron strings came loose, and I saw Gordie, our playful Maine Coon kitten, was the culprit.

It was hard to imagine that the little furball was the one who brought Jude and I together. He’d been running one morning and found a six-week-old Gordie trying to fight off a feral dog. Jude rescued the kitten and brought him to my vet clinic, where I performed emergency surgery on him. Jude, a big hockey player for Savannah’s hockey team, Savannah Heat, fell in love with the kitten’s spirit and kept him.

We’d had our share of drama and danger since we started dating. A crazy ex-stalker who ultimately put us both in the hospital. My long recovery and lots and lots of love.

I re-tied my apron and went back to my cookie making. Jude’s parents and sister were flying in from Norway, and he hadn’t seen them in over two years. He was beyond excited, and I was nervous to death. I wanted everything to be perfect. My dad and our best friends were all coming over, and I wanted everything to be special.

Dad was all settled in his new house and firm. He was still working criminal law but had slowed down so he could attend all of Jude’s games and he spent a lot of time with me while I recovered. I couldn’t ask for a better dad, boyfriend, or friends. They all pulled together for me. I’d never felt so loved. Xander and Marcel, Jude’s teammates and best friends; Rachel and Julie, my employees and best friends; and our parents were going to be here Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. This was going to be my first time cooking for everyone, and I’d been plowing through all my cookbooks and the internet to find good recipes.

It was two days before Christmas Eve, and Jude’s parents would be here this afternoon. I would be going with him to pick them up and I was terrified. They’d be staying through the first of the year to do some touristy stuff and I was going to be their guide.

This was the first year that Jude had put up a tree since he’d been in the States. He said his ex-girlfriend didn’t want to deal with the mess and since he was usually away playing hockey; he didn’t push the subject. When we picked out the tree, he was like a kid seeing Santa for the first time. He insisted that we had to get the biggest one that would fit in the house. Since we had high ceilings, the tree was huge, and we had to have it delivered.

We had the best time going from store to store to find ornaments and lights. We decided we wanted an eclectic-cozy tree, so we didn’t want matching ornaments. We also decided we’d pick a new one every year and have the date put on it. This year’s ornament was a hockey puck that one of the Heat’s WAGS, the acronym for the wives and girlfriends of the hockey players, was making. She was donating the proceeds from them to one of the charities they helped sponsor. Something I was going to have to get involved in. We put the date on the back of the ornament with a silver Sharpie. It was going to be a good tradition. Hopefully one of many we would have. I had to fight Jude on using real candles on the tree, so we compromised and got some hand-blown glass candles that were electric. They were beautiful and made by a local artisan.

“Babe, it’s time to go,” Jude said, as he snagged his keys. His accent was slightly thicker than usual, probably due to the anticipation of seeing his family and speaking his native Norwegian.

I took another look in the mirror. I had lost a lot of weight because I couldn’t eat solid food for weeks while I was healing. Jude was constantly trying to fatten me up. I wanted to keep some of it off, but I needed to gain a few pounds, and I could easily accept that.

“You are the most beautiful woman I know, Elskede, inside and out. They are going to love you. I talk about you more than I do about myself. My mom’s ready to adopt you and my sister keeps telling me you’re going to be the sister she always wanted. That one kinda hurt my feelings, but I got over it,” he said and grinned that panty-dropping grin showing both dimples.

My heart lurched, and butterflies took flight. He still had that effect on me. Lordy.

“I’m as ready as I’ll ever be. The house is clean. We have a ton of food, both Norwegian and American. All the guest rooms are set up, fresh towels and linens, and the tree is ready to decorate on Christmas Eve. I also look passable. Well, at least I’m clean.”

Jude pulled me into his arms and kissed me hard. He ran his hands down to my ass and squeezed.

“If we had more time, I would show you just how beautiful you are. You rock my world every time I look at you.”

I hugged him hard and kissed his neck, snuggling in for a few seconds of quiet before the masses descended.

“Let’s go meet your family,” I said into his chest.


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