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Free Read: Christmas Kisses

Christmas Kiss
by Faith Luna
All rights reserved
copyright 2012

Note: This is from Christmas Carnival... due to be released on Wednesday.

It's m/m :) and sci-fi

Also.. there is a blog hop! You still have a day to come and get in on all the prizes! Win a copy of the full Christmas Carnival.

Blog Hop Post:

“I promise you, Mr. Kayn, this person can not hurt anyone here. Let me show you what it’s like? It’ll be research for you, so you know what everyone else is experiencing. How can you hunt this monster if you don’t even know what world you’re in?” Styles held out his hand. “Just give me a moment of trust. I’ll take good care of you.”

“I know where I am,” Kayn growled, refusing to give over his hand. “I don’t need anyone to take care of me!”

“It’s two days before Christmas. Everyone needs someone to take care of them.  Come on,” Styles said, licking his lip suggestively. “You know you want to. It’ll literally only take a moment, well, for the scene I’m about to share with you, twenty-six seconds, but that’s close enough to a moment. Then I’ll find your bad guy for you.”

“Are you a computer?”

The expression that flickered over Style’s face was nothing short of purely human disgust. “Computers are toasters, Mr. Kayn. I am most certainly not a toaster. Give me your hand,” he commanded.

Perhaps it was the authority in Styles’ voice, but Kayn grabbed his hand as if they were going to shake, and then it was completely different world.

He was a completely different person. Very distantly, he knew who he really was, but the glove of being Simone Yost settled deeply into his being. He turned to look into the mirror behind the bar, knowing what he’d find – a more tall than short blond man with green eyes, clean shaven, but with lines between his eyes from too much worry. The world itself was old, before there were colonies, even before there was any serious space flight. Cars and motorcycles, planes and technology, the whole world living as if the waters weren’t rising, as if human intelligence were the brightest light the universe would ever know. He knew this world as deeply as he knew what his face looked like in this world, that he knew what he longed for, and that it was twenty minutes until he got off his shift. The glass on the bar irritated him and he picked it up, grabbed a white bar cloth from under the bar, grabbing it as easily as if he’d been the one who placed it there. He wiped away the very real ring of condensation, put the glass in a black plastic dish bin, eyed the empty bar, then the door through which he could watch snow falling, Christmas happening for people who weren’t him.

The loneliness he felt was very real and as valid for bartender in the twenty-first century as it was for a cop from the violent crimes division in the twenty-third century.  He leaned on the counter, his chin on the palm of his hand. Loneliness was not sexy, not even a little, but it was familiar and he forgot that he was Sydney Kayn.

Simone didn’t care about climate change or violent crimes. He cared about a pretty redheaded man he’d never met. To be fair, he’d met several over the years, but none of them were the one he’d known in his dreams, which made those dreams feel farther away with the close of every day. He was going to be alone.

He was going to be alone with a bottle of rum though, and maybe that wasn’t so bad.  For a dream, the whole place felt completely real and the rum was exactly where he knew it would be. Pouring it, the golden liquid smelled like rum, sharp and sweet. He lifted the filled up shot glass, as if he were toasting to the empty bar. “To your own fucking lives, off having a good time while I’m here by myself.” He threw the shot back and the stuff burned just like rum.

Tinkling, brass and delicate, announced the opening of the door. Cold swirled around the man in the doorway and resisted him as he pushed the door closed. The hood to his coat fell back to his shoulders, revealing vibrant red hair, short and spiky, about as natural as vodka tasting like birthday cake. The slender willowy guy spun, back against the door, palms against it, as if he were holding the door closed with all his might. He was pale, a bit of rosy color on his cheeks and lips, eyes a bit of every color, pretty, but a bit too ordinary to be the star in a sexual fantasy. “Blow job for a whiskey?” He asked in a scratchy voice, done in by the cold and wind of Christmas eve, and maybe a little bit of hunger. He followed the request up with a grin the size of July.

Well, that did for the last of the romance and any potential for sexual excitement for either Simone or Kayn. “How old are you?”

“Twenty-five. I’ve got ID, asshole. You don’t like guys then?”

“I like guys just fine, always have. Sit down. The door can take care of itself.”

He stood up, straightened his puffy green coat, then reached into pull out a wallet, perhaps. “So you don’t want a blowjob?”

Kayn scratched the back of his neck. It wasn’t like he hadn’t paid for plenty of them, at least two a week at home, but it was legal and safe, clean. He knew the character he was playing did the same, always with red heads, always wanting to have some kind of white knight syndrome for them. “Not tonight. It’s Christmas eve. That means something, doesn’t it?”

“Does it mean I get a whisky?”

“Show me your ID.” Kayn said, as he pulled a bottle from the upper shelves down. “Want a burger to go with it?”

“Oh god, yes, please.” The guy said, holding out his ID. Housed in a worn, but once expensive black leather wallet, the photo matched and he was twenty-five. “I’m new in town, though I don’t know if I’m staying. I try to be somewhere different every Christmas.”

“Running from family?”

“Yes,” he admitted easily, tossing back the shot like it was whipped cream. “Isn’t everyone, in one way or another?”

Kayn shrugged. Internally he tried to turn down the personality that was Simone. There was something in this scene that he wanted for himself. “Some of us never had any family. It’s just this expectation that we ought to. Find some fucker, come to a deal, and make like it’s happily ever after and that doing so is going to make us feel something, you know?”

“Wow,” the red head said, smiling a little crookedly, but genuinely. “That’s intense. I don’t know that I’d know how to feel happy or happily ever after if it walked up and smacked the crap out of me.”

“I don’t think happily ever after is supposed to knock the crap out of ya.” Kayn poured himself another rum, but he made it two fingers on the rocks and just expected Simone’s employer to be good with it. “It’s supposed to be sweet and fluffy. Cuddling and stupid glittery cards.”

“Maybe with a girl.”

“Guys too. My captain always has some fluffy shit on his desk. Makes him happy, I guess.”

“I’m a masochist,” Red said, “Oh and my name is Jerry, but everyone calls me Lace.”

“Lace…so you’re a pleasure worker? Is that legal in this… uh… fantasy world?”

“It’s Christmas Eve, not psychosis-R-Us, buddy. It’s your world too and of course prostitution isn’t legal. I’m not a prostitute. There was a time you’d go to jail for pouring booze too, you know?”

“Booze isn’t illegal. Stupid sometimes, but not illegal.”

“Was during Prohibition. I’m a computer programmer. I just don’t like my birth name.”

“Change it then,” Kayn said, finding it easier to pour himself another rum, which he promised himself that he was going to take slower, as he fired up the grill. “So you think prostitution should be legal?”

“And much safer than it is. People get hurt. Human trafficking is one of the great sorrows of our time. I’m going to make the world a better place someday!” His chin rested on his palm, those ordinary colored eyes seemed so full of life, sparkling with creative energy.

It sent a spark of something that might be called life through Kayn. He flopped a couple of burger patties on the grill, set buns on it too, on the part that was still cooler. His amusement didn’t quiet rise to being a laugh, but it still felt good. The tension in his shoulders released for the first time in so long he hadn’t even known there had been a time before. “You’re making my world better. You like pepper?”

“No. No pepper for me, but I like pineapple on my burger.”

“I’ll see if we have some,” Kayn said, squatting so he could root through the condiment fridge. That Lace said he was a masochist swirled around in Kayn’s mind like it had some meaning. At first he just though it was some kind of conversational joke, but as he moved 1/8 pans around looking for pineapple, he wondered if it maybe had been meant literally.  He did find a bit of pineapple that looked fresh enough. Simone was too far under his consciousness now for him to know what kind of drink took pineapple, but but it didn’t really matter. As he stood up, he looked into the red head’s eyes and asked, “So? You get off on pain?”

The conversation crystalized, putting the center of gravity firmly between them – so that they were twin stars caught in each other’s gravity, pulling each other apart over time. Those eyes were anything except nondescript now. Frost and gold, a hint of forest, and mysteries that Kayn internalized as a sense of awe, and their roles flipped from lost soul and kindly bartender to predator and prey. All the rough was gone from his whiskey-warmed voice now. “It’s more complicated than that.”

Kayn swallowed, his mouth dry as all his blood ran to his cock. “Explain it to me,” he demanded, completely unwilling to be prey. He set the pineapple on the counter and moved closer, standing tall over the prettier and smaller man. The man’s roots caught his attention, dropping him deeper into the mystery of the man. “You’re a natural red head, but you dye your hair brown, then red again, so if you don’t look close, you look like you dye your hair red. What the fuck?”

Still slightly cool fingers brushed over the back of Kayn’s hand, sending goosebumps all the way up the back of his neck, standing his hair on end, tightening his breath as Lace stood up and leaned closer, as if he could catch that bit of frozen breath on Kayn’s lips. “Do you want to chase me?”

His hand shook as he reached up to brush the back of his fingers over smooth cheek, feeling the silk of lying hair, so real, so very present that he knew he’d never ever forget this moment, no matter how many lives he lived. Lace was everything he’d ever wanted, ever, in all his life. He was Christmas morning, victory, sugar, nicotine, and love all in one tangible being just resting in the palm of his hand, ready to flutter away as fast as he had come. Impulsively, Kayn’s fingers dove into the spiky hair, breaking the hard shell of it, bending it into his captive. A fist full of hair, he paused, horrified by his own action. Chest tight from his held breath, he stared down into those beautiful eyes… like a captured dove, trusting and completely and utterly vulnerable, open in ways that a human maybe should never be. Pink lips, moist with living breath, real beyond anything he’d ever known and he knew that he belonged with this, his twin star, his capture of the man was no more than the man’s capture of him. He tightened his hold in the man’s hair, pulling until he knew it had to hurt. His captive pulled back, lips parting just the tiny fraction more as wet tongue reached out for him.

“I don’t have to chase what is already mine,” Kayn growled, diving into the kiss, pushing his tongue in, tasting and owning as surely as he knew he was alive. The warmth he’d taken opened to him, pushed back. He growled, needing more than he needed anything.

The death of time left him standing there on his side of the bar, looking at the most beautiful man in all the universe, parted lips wet with his kiss and ownership. Uncomfortably aware of the life cycle of his own passion and that he was very glad he had a black apron on to cover the wet in his pants. That realization hit him a second time with more clarity. Embarrassed, he turned back to the grill, flipping the burgers. A hand on the back of his head, he really didn’t know how a kiss could be that intense. “So… can I know you.. .like when we’re not.. in some VR?”

Lace sighed contentedly. “You already know me, Sydney.  Merry Christmas.”


Unknown said…
I love finding new authors and books. Cant wait to start reading your books.
Unknown said…
I love finding new authors and books. Cant wait to start reading your books.
Kim D said…
I also love finding new people to read. I've found a lot of them doing hops
Merry Christmas
Unknown said…
Wow! Very interesting story. Thanks! Thanks for the chance to win as well.

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