A question, first for the authors:
Book Name: Chestnuts Roasting Anthology
Author Name: Toni Griffin, Angel Martinez, Silvia Violet, Freddy MacKay
Mischief Corner Books is an organization of superheroes… no, it’s a platinum-album techno-fusion group…no, hold on a sec here…
Ah, yes. Mischief Corner is a diverse group of authors who met on a mountain in Tennessee and decided since we probably were too easily distracted to rule the world that we’d settle for causing a bit of mayhem instead.
In addition to making mayhem, we publish books with a diverse range of genres and topics… we live to break molds.
MCB. Giving voice to LGBTQ fiction.
Publisher: Mischief Corner Books, LLC
Cover Artist: Catherine Dair
Christmas means different things to everyone, but most often it’s all about pulling loved ones close and brightening the gloom. The fire’s crackling. The snow is piling up outside, even if it’s only in your dreams. Time to snuggle up with some cocoa and some stories carefully crafted by the Mischief Corner Crew to warm hearts and cockles.
Wreath of Fire: Smokey Mountains Bears 2 – Toni Griffin
Michael’s trying to start a new life away from his abusive father, but he’s drifting and not sure what he wants. When he accidentally starts a kitchen fire, the hot new fireman who comes to the rescue is not only another bear shifter. He’s Michael’s mate. Michael desperately needs to get his act together and figure out what he wants if he has any hope of claiming the bear fated to be his.
A Christmas Cactus for the General – Angel Martinez
Exiled to Earth for perhaps the worst failure in Irasolan history, General Teer must assimilate or die. Earth is too warm, too wet, too foreign, but he does the best he can even though human males are loud, childish louts whom he can’t imitate successfully. When a grieving seaplane pilot strikes up a strange and uneasy friendship with him, he finds he may have been too quick to judge human males. They are strange to look at, but perhaps not as unbearable as he thought.
‘A Christmas Cactus for the General’ – Angel Martinez
Holly Jolly – Silvia Violet
I’m not gay. I just notice men sometimes. Everybody does, right? I notice Dane a lot, like every time I’m near him, but just because I think he’s an attractive man that doesn’t mean I like him, does it?
I’m also not a fan of Christmas. Too many years “celebrating” with my Bible-thumping family ruined the holiday for me. So what if I envy all these cheerful souls dashing about with smiles on their faces? I don’t have to like Christmas, do I? If anyone could get me in the Christmas spirit, it would be Dane with his easy, relaxed manner and his gorgeous smile. If that were going to happen, though, I’d have to find the courage to talk to him and to admit that maybe I don’t know myself all that well after all.
Snow on Spirit Bridge – Freddy MacKay
Alone in Japan, Finni is struggling against the constant distrust, avoidance, and xenophobia he experiences every day. He misses home. He misses his family. Nightmares come all too frequently because of the stress, and well, Christmas is just not Christmas in Japan. Not how he understands it.
Distressed by how miserable Finni is, his roommate, Mamoru, offers to be Finni’s family for Christmas. Little does he know how much one agreement would change everything between them, because both of them kept secrets neither ever dreamed were true.
From “A Christmas Cactus for the General” by Angel Martinez
Teer kept still, watching the man drive off. The men on this world amazed him, such clumsy, uncontrolled louts, like overgrown children. If that had been one of his own men back home, Mr. Bruce would have been on the floor with a boot against his windpipe. But Teer couldn’t do such things here. It was, from what he understood, illegal.
“A pansy seems an honorable flower. Such strong colors,” he said as Molly returned to him. “But I’m fairly certain that wasn’t a compliment.”
“No, it wasn’t.” Molly pursed her lips, an expression Teer knew by now meant she was unhappy. “I’m sorry about that. I think he goes to visit someone in the cemetery every Friday. But it’s no excuse to act like a son of a bitch.”
Sometimes it still struck Teer as odd, working for a female, but Molly was a sensible, practical person, more like a male Irasolan than most of the men on this strange, wet planet.
“When you say he visits someone at the cemetery, is this a way of saying he goes to honor someone who has died?”
Molly gave him an odd look, then shook her head. “I’m sorry. Your English is so good, I forget you get tripped up by expressions sometimes. Yeah. I’m pretty sure he lost someone close to him.”
The single hyacinth every week seemed extravagant tribute, but Teer had to tamp down hard on his instincts every time he filled a customer’s order. Flowers to these people were disposable, things of temporary beauty that could be callously cut from their parent plants. A single plant given to the honored dead back home would have been a sign of such overarching grief that the survivor’s family would have feared an imminent suicide attempt.
But for this man, the tribute paid is every week. His wounds are deep, but not fatal. Not that I have any reason to be curious or even vaguely interested. Rude, uncouth…what is the word? Jerk.
“Ah. Never fear, Molly. It’s difficult to be offended by words that don’t mean much to me.” He offered her a smile, since smiles were often meant as reassurance here. “You said you had lights to put up today? For the upcoming holidays?”
“Right! The Christmas lights!” Molly scurried to the back and returned with two boxes, full of small glass bulbs attached to wires. “I guess you don’t do Christmas either, huh?”
“My…family never celebrated Christmas, no.”
“Oh, right. Buddhist or something I bet.”
“Something of that sort,” Teer murmured as he began to pull one of the hopelessly tangled strands from the first box. Apparently, Christmas had something to do with testing spatial acuity and patience. Odd holiday.
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