Every Time a Bell Rings
Brian dropped everything last year when his mother became ill so he could take care of her until the day she died. People he thought were his friends didn’t stick with him and he’s somehow become kind of a recluse without meaning to be. Only Mike, his best friend, has stuck by him and is now saving him from homelessness after a fire destroys Brian’s apartment building days before Christmas. Though Mike has to go down South for the holiday, Brian stays in Mike’s apartment with his slightly singed kitten Oreo. Brian’s only goal is to set his affairs back in order before everything shuts down for the holidays and then make it through those holidays in one piece. He’s lost so much—his only real possession is a photo album of his mom that he risked death to save from the fire—and he’s feeling lost and very alone…until Mike’s hot neighbor Trent, and even little Oreo, conspire to give Brian the best Christmas possible and a future that looks a lot brighter.
An Angel Gets His Wings
Mike Sharp is in Little Rock, Arkansas, visiting his family for Christmas while his best friend Brian Bailey’s up north walking right into Mike’s plans to hook him up with his neighbor Trent. Unfortunately, it seems like someone’s conspiring to get Mike panting after his third cousin, twice removed (or something like that) named George Whitlock. George who keeps sneaking up on him, being all shy and cute, and then having the audacity to give Mike great big calf eyes that are just begging Mike to drop to his knees. Mike will not give in because, if he does, he could lose his entire family when they discover he’s gay.
Two fantastic short stories. You know a story is great when you are left wanting more. I want to read what happens next. The character development is so rich, I can imagine having met and liking these people.
Content warning: house fire (aftermath) and death of a parent (remembered).