Simon hates the Holidays. It’s the same every year – awaiting the dreaded Christmas Eve, when his father gets drunk, while the family fake Christmas spirit and strain to hear the TV over Dad’s snoring. This year, Simon’s sister is celebrating Christmas elsewhere, leaving him to deal with their parents on his own. But there’s a glimmer of hope. A work colleague introduces Simon to her son Hannes at the Lucia Day celebrations, the trouble being that Simon mistakenly believes it’s a blind date, and as if that isn’t embarrassing enough, Hannes wants them to be friends, and Simon’s starting to see signals that aren’t there. He’s beginning to wonder if he’ll make it through Christmas with his sanity intact.
A story from Boughs of Evergreen: A Holiday Anthology
The proceeds from Boughs of Evergreen: A Holiday Anthology and From All of Us to All of You goes to The Trevor Project. The Trevor Project is the only American organisation providing suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth in crisis. Since lesbian, gay and bisexual youth are more than four times more likely than their peers to attempt suicide, and youth who are questioning their sexual orientation are three times more likely, this is an organisation I want to support.
“Well, dear,” she said, turning to me, “this is my son Hannes. Hannes this is Simon.” We shook hands like good little gentlemen, and added a polite nod. “Good, now you two talk, while I go and get us some more glögg.”
“Eh—” I began as she walked away.
“I’m sorry,” he blurted out. “She means well, she really does, but…you know.”
“Yeah, I’m not your type.”
“What?” Hannes looked alarmed.
“The blind-date thing, I’m not what you’re looking for.”
I pointed discreetly back and forth between us. “It’s okay, no hard feelings. It wasn’t like I asked her to set us up,” I said with a smile, even though it hurt a little to see him that taken aback by the thought of dating me.
“I’m not…she didn’t…it’s not…I’m not gay! It’s not a date…She just wants me to make some friends. Last week she arranged for me to help a young lady change over to snow tires in hopes of us getting along.”
Shit! I wished the ground would open and swallow me whole. I tried to pretend I hadn’t misinterpreted this whole situation.
”This is certainly a different type of Christmas story: it is set around Santa Lucia and Christmas in Sweden. There is no one feeling lonely amongst their hordes of relatives and presents and happiness.”— MM Good Book Reviews (Full Review)
”From All of Us to All of You is that wonderful short story that gives you a good feeling about the holidays, even if you don’t like the holidays. It’s short, funny and romantic! Perfect to read under the Christmas tree!” — Bookwinked (Full Review)
”The way the author wrote it, the reader is looking in from the outside and of course knows where this is going but also wondering how it all unfolds. A truly interesting way to get the attention of this reader and lock onto it until the very, very sweet ending.” — Multitaskingmomma (Full Review)
”This short holiday story is colorful, funny and hopeful.” — Hearts on Fire (Full Review)
“Despite it being a short story, there is a full tale here and you don’t feel anything has been glossed over or not added. It was also interesting to read about a different country’s holiday traditions, like the St. Lucia festival, which I’d never heard of before. It all adds to the background of the story.”— Annette Gisby (Full Review)
Boughs of Evergreen is a two-volume collection of short stories celebrating the holiday season in all its diversity. Penned by authors from the UK, the USA, Scandinavia and Eastern Europe, these are tales of the young and the not-so-young from many different walks of life.
Themes of family, friendship and romance take readers on a journey through some of the major holidays, both past and present, including Thanksgiving, Advent, St. Lucia Day, Hanukkah, Eid, Saturnalia, Winter Solstice, Yule, Christmas and New Year. In each we find at the very least hope, and often love, peace and happiness.
A collection of short stories celebrating the holiday season in all its diversity. All the proceeds go to The Trevor Project.
Alexis Woods, Amelia Mann, Amy Spector, Ava Penn, Claire Davis, Debbie McGowan, Hans M Hirschi, Hunter Frost, J.P. Walker, Jonathan Penn, K.C. Faelan, Kathleen Hayes, L.L. Bucknor, L.M. Steel, Larry Benjamin, Laura Susan Johnson, Matthias Williamson, Ofelia Grand, Raine O’Tierney, Rick Bettencourt, S.H. Allan, Shayla Mist, Tami Veldura