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The Most Romantic Night of the Year

Happy New Year!

My apologies for leaving this space blank for too long. I had these grand ambitions of regularly updating with little excerpts from my novel, my perpetual WIP (work in progress) and I just haven’t followed through as well as I wish I had.

But let’s remedy that, shall we?

(I had initially intended on posting this on Christmas Eve, for obvious reasons, and for not-so-obvious reasons, I failed to do so. You’ll just have to accept my apology.)

For many people, when asked what they considered to be the most romantic holiday, they would promptly respond with, “Valentine’s Day.” I supposed they wouldn’t be incorrect in their feelings, given the day’s amorous history and commercialized sentiment, but no, for me it was always Christmas Eve. In my opinion, few days could be more romantic than the assumed eve of Christ’s birth, with the exception of anniversaries perhaps. There was something in that intimate hush that lulled over the Earth, that momentary sense of peace that brought those wise men travelling through the desert all those years ago, the desire and need to be closest with those you care for most, and the sensual kiss of the fireplace against rosy cheeks. All of it combined painted a picture of cozy warmth, and to me, that was exactly what love should be.

That wasn’t the type of love I had found myself in. I was in the torturous kind that left me lying awake when I should have been sleeping, tossing and turning through the stresses of wondering if she had any sort of feelings towards me and how I was supposed to confess my true identity to her after so much time had lapsed.

I had come close the night before, under the mistletoe in Bill’s shop. The guilt of her not knowing had hit me hard in the gut after a kiss that had manifested into something far more emotional than anything I could have expected. I had been within millimeters of telling her everything when the world suddenly appeared around us, and I could only assume that she had immediately remembered that she wasn’t presently single and that she had just been unfaithful to her boyfriend. She was gone at that, and the Reade family urged me to run after her in some display of storybook valiance. Hell, I thought about it for a few moments, allowing enough time to pass for her to get into her car and drive away, subconsciously deciding that it wasn’t the right time long before she had even reached the shop’s jingling door.

But would there ever be a right time? I thought, rubbing a hand against my forehead.

My thoughts had left me entranced by the twinkling lights on the Christmas tree in Nick’s living room, to the point of being oblivious to the other guests around me. Surrounded by people, and I had never felt lonelier before in my life. I wished upon the gaudy tinseled star, a far stretch from the one leading the wise men, that I could blink and suddenly be one of the few dozen couples there with my arm around Holly’s waist as we gabbed about the new addition to our house or a new recipe we tried for our contribution to the holiday spread.

I blinked, and found myself still sitting on that couch. I couldn’t help feeling disappointed, knowing how stupid that really was.

© 2017 Kelsey Kingsley

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