Kris T Bethke is here today! In Sweden, the 24th is the day we celebrate Christmas, not on the 25th as most do, so I’ll hand everything over to Kris and go back to eating chocolate while looking at the Christmas tree. Welcome, Kris!
Hi everyone! First let me say a great big thank you to Ofelia for putting this together and inviting us all to play at her blog.
If you don’t know me, I’m Kris T. Bethke and I write fluffy, happy stories about men finding love. But don’t worry, there’s usually a bit of heat thrown in there too. I mostly just want the happy of watching two (or more!) people falling in love. So be sure to check me backlist out if you want sweet with heat…and a good does of bisexual rep to boot!
In my newest release, Gingerbread and Good Tidings, Cody starts getting mysterious treats delivered to his home on the four days leading up to Christmas. All with his favorite gingerbread incorporated somehow. He has no idea who is sending them though, but he’s touched by the gifts and the notes included. And there’s always a treat for his dog, Pippa, as well. Whoever is sending them definitely knows him. When Christmas Eve finally rolls around, Cody just might get the Christmas gift he didn’t even know he needed.
I’m around on social media, so if you want to find me, the best way is to hit me up on Twitter https://twitter.com/kristbethke or on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/people/Kris-T-Bethke/100014524539852 . You can also shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org I always love to hear from readers, so don’t be shy!
Read on for an exclusive excerpt! And you can buy it here https://www.jms-books.com/kris-t-bethke-c-224_240/gingerbread-and-good-tidings-p-3600.html
Cody Schaefer loves the Christmas season and a benefit to working from home means that he gets to be surrounded by his decoration collections all the time. And as a bonus, he starts getting deliveries from a local café containing holiday treats flavored with gingerbread. The notes aren’t signed, but they clearly come from someone who knows him.
Out of all of Cody’s friends, Jason van Buren is the only one level-headed about the mysterious treats, and Cody begins talking to him daily. Cody enjoys their chats, and the two men grow closer. One Christmas Eve, no delivery appears. But Jason shows up on his doorstep, ready to back gingerbread cookies. It’s then Cody realizes just who is behind the deliveries. And perhaps, Cody will get Jason as his Christmas gift this year.
“Well, that’s all true. You are special, Cody.”
My first instinct was to play it off with a joke, make some kind of humorous comment, but instead, I took a moment, read the sincerity on his face, and was honest and heartfelt instead.
“That’s very kind. I didn’t know I needed to hear it until I did.”
Jason cut his eyes away, and he scratched at the short goatee he was sporting. It was hardly more than scruff, but it was even and well kept. He’d been clean-shaven up until about a year ago, but I liked this look on him. It suited his face, and I’d been sure to tell him so. He’d had it ever since.
“You should hear it all the time,” he said, then cleared his throat and focused on me. “Did you try them yet?”
“Nope. But, oh my God, look at them!” I flipped the camera and held the phone over the box, making sure to center the rolls in frame. “Don’t they look amazing?”
“They do. I’m sure they taste even better.”
I lifted the phone and flipped the camera back to front-facing. I made my eyes wide. “I almost don’t want to eat them, they look so perfect. It would be a shame to ruin them.”
Jason chuckled. “Baked goods are for eating, honey.”
My heart jumped at the endearment, but he was probably being silly or something, so I tried to ignore it. But my pulse was racing, and I wanted to flirt with him. He’d always turned my key, but I’d kept that in check as best I could since he didn’t seem to be open to it. Now, maybe that had changed. I decided to test the waters.
I turned my chair until the lit up tree was on my left and a few of my gingerbread people could be seen on the windowsill. Then I gave my best smile, the one I knew lit up my face and had, in the past, made men give me a second look. Jason’s eyes went wide, and that made me grin even harder.
“Look, I’m a Christmas card. Perfect, huh?”
“Absolutely perfect.” He cleared his throat again. “That’s quite a tree you have there.”
I sighed happily. “Isn’t it amazing?”
He chuckled, a deep, resonant sound that wormed its way into my soul. “Let me see it.”
I hopped up immediately, flipped the camera again, and took him right to the tree. I did a slow pan, up and down, and all the way around, pointing out my favorite ornaments as I went. “This one here, I bought at a craft fair. See how the globe catches the light? It’s gorgeous and I love it….oh! This one? This one I’ve had my entire life. My parents bought it for my first Christmas, and it’s been on my tree ever since.” I paused and touched the gingerbread man that had been inscribed with my name and my birth year. “Hmm, maybe that’s why I love gingerbread people so much.”
Jason made an amused, but thoughtful sound. “Perhaps.”
I cackled, loving the slight smirk on his face. “I came by it honestly, though. Look at this one.” I had to move around the tree until I found the one I wanted. The tin ornament’s paint had faded over the years, chipping in some places and nearly non-existent in others. It was the shape that really indicated it was a gingerbread man with a bow tie around his neck. I reverently touched it with one finger. “This was my mom’s favorite. It always had a place of pride on the tree.”