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All He Wants For Christmas

Author/Writer of Book/Novel:

Lulu Pratt

Language:
English
Book Information:

Hey Santa, I’ve been a really bad boy this year.

I’m a billionaire whose only concern is the bottom line.
I’m back in my hometown on business and spy Juliet working at the hotel lounge.
She’s fun, sassy and I want to bend her over the bar.
We get caught and she loses her job.
To make it up I whisk her away to a tropical paradise.
But it turns out I caused her to lose her previous job when I bought the company.
When she finds out my secret, she leaves me.
However, I’ve lost my heart to Juliet.
All I want for Christmas is her, wrapped up with a red ribbon and in my arms forever.

Books by Author:

Lulu Pratt Books

Chapter 1

JULIET

THE COSMETICS section was always my favorite. I saved it for last during my pre-shift walks, like the red Starbursts. You never knew what you would find in Givens & Co. Unlike most retail giants, we were known to carry some of the high-end designers. That was what I was looking for that Saturday, something to lift my spirits after a disastrous week.

I’d assumed I would lose myself in the chaos of the on-going Black Friday sales I’d come to love in my three years working at Givens. Every year, they started earlier and earlier, as though people couldn’t get to the sales quick enough. This year, we opened our doors on Thanksgiving itself, a first for the company, but necessary for us to remain competitive.

By Friday afternoon, usually our busiest day of the year, there were no customers coming through my checkout lane. It left me with more time than I wanted to think about how my life had drastically changed in the worst week of my life – so far!

After two and half years of dating, Brad decided he no longer saw a future for us. Like I was a car rental or lease agreement. Everything with him had become so matter of fact lately. There was no emotion between us, just this surface-level bond.

When I think back to the beginning of our relationship, it’s difficult to admit that things weren’t much different then. We were the best of friends, and unlike other guys, he never pushed me to take things further before I was ready. In fact, it was me who had to make the first move with Brad. And everything moved slowly from there. We’d been dating exclusively for over a year before we had sex, and in our final year of dating, I could count on one hand how many times we’d slept together and none of those were in the last six months. Brad wasn’t the type to sleep around, so I was sure he was faithful. Perhaps I had a higher libido than him.

Alone in the lipstick aisle, I shook my head, ashamed I hadn’t noticed how long ago Brad had checked out of our relationship. It was clear he wasn’t interested, but I kept fighting; for what, I’m not sure. There wasn’t any real chemistry between us, and Brad had always been closer friends with my older sister Rosie than he ever was with me. I guess it was the normalcy I craved, knowing that he was always there for my family and me.

It was what I missed now, not knowing what I’d do after work, and not having a friend there to hang out on the couch. That was it – he was a friend who was a boy, not really a boyfriend.

Stroking a tester lipstick against the back of my hand, I wondered where I could get away with a bright red lip in my life. Everything was so mundane. My eyes were filled with tears over not having a companion to watch Netflix on the couch with. I had to be the most boring twenty-two-year old on the planet.

Still, I dropped the red lipstick in my basket. I was overdue for a new look, a new me. I’d been stuck in a rut for too long. In that sense, maybe Brad had done me a favor ending our relationship. By taking away what was comfortable, he’d forced me to redefine what my life would look like. For the hundredth time since the breakup, I tried to see it as a positive thing. A fresh start, a blank canvas.

Slowly, I walked to the next aisle, waving at a new employee I’d yet to make a connection with. There were so many new faces at Givens, which was to be expected for the holiday rush. But these employees were different, unlike the seasonal help I helped to onboard. I held training sessions every Saturday morning, but these new hires weren’t required to attend. That usually meant they were executives, above working a cash register, but our store wasn’t in need of new executives.

Although I was what they label an entry-level employee, I was respected for knowing everyone and everything that happened at Givens. I’d worked there longer than most of the executives, which made it easy for me to present myself as useful, and often that meant they trusted me with information above my paygrade. But I hadn’t heard anything about these new employees who walked around more as appraisers than new hires. It was like they were grading us, always carrying clipboards and scribbling down notes.

“I just can’t believe this!” I heard the high-pitched cry from the end of the aisle. When my eyes locked with Monica’s, her tears seemed to flow even faster.

“What’s wrong?” I abandoned my basket, rushing to be by her side.


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