I will be posting snippets from my holiday books this month. This one, TUFFER'S CHRISTMAS WISH, is the first. This book is NOT a romance. It's a literary short story.
The main character, Tuffer Demson, is from my First & Ten football romance series. His life story whirled around in my head until I had to tell it. I love Tuffer. He's touched my heart. I hope he will touch yours, as well.
It all started when Tuffer Demson, defensive linebacker for the Connecticut Kings, met his biological mother on Christmas Eve. They broke bread once a year, during the holidays. Tuffer met her at the diner at ten for breakfast. He called her by her given name, since he didn’t remember her ever being his mom. He had someone else he had called that for the past twenty-three years, and he liked it that way.
“Hi, Shayna,” he said, easing his six-foot-three-inch, linebacker body into the booth.
“Hi, yourself,” the blonde said. She eyed him up and down. “You’re looking good. Kings must be agreeing with you.”
“Yep.” These meetings were at her insistence. He could’ve cared less if he never saw her again. But his folks had taught him respect. Besides, it was only once a year.
“What’ll ya have?” the server asked.
Shayna always ordered a huge amount of food—the most expensive dishes too. A side of bacon and sausage with eggs Benedict. A large, fresh-squeezed orange juice. Maybe a sweet bun. She knew Tuffer’d pick up the check, and he always did. She didn’t make much as a waitress, and no one gets residuals on porno flicks, so he understood her need for a splurge—even if it was at her son’s expense.
In the beginning, he’d met with her hoping to find out who his father was. But Shayna had vowed never to reveal the man’s name.
“Think you’re going to the Super Bowl?” She added cream to her coffee.
“We’ve got a good shot.”
“You get a nice, fat bonus for winning, don’t you?”
He nodded and sipped his juice.
“A hundred grand?”
“Not quite that much.”
“Buy yourself a fancy car with that kind of money.”
“I don’t need a fancy car. My SUV is fine.”
“Sometimes, it’s hard to believe you’re my kid,” she said with a chuckle, shaking her head.
“My real mother and father don’t give a shit about stuff.”
Her eyes widened as if she’d been hit. “Got that right. They’re better ’an me. I know. That’s why I left you with them. I knew it’d be better for you.”
“Dumped me with them, you mean.”
“We’ve been over this a hundred times. Do we have to go over it again?”
The server brought their food. There was hardly enough room on the table for all that Shayna had ordered.
“Just be honest. You dumped me because it was good for you, not for me,” said Tuffer.
“I coulda left you at the police station. I picked a nice couple. Ran a preschool. Good with kids. You liked them. They liked you. Seemed like a good bet.”
“Good bet for who?”
“I was twenty. I wasn’t ready to be a mom.”
“And Bev Demson was?”
“Yeah. She told me about the car accident. That she couldn’t have kids. She was jealous I had you.”
“Mom has never been jealous of anyone a day in her life.”
“Yeah? Well, she was jealous of me. She wanted you.” Shayna cut a piece of the Benedict with her fork and put it in her mouth.
Tuffer pushed around the scrambled eggs on his plate. He hated going over this again, but he refused to let her weasel out of the truth.
“They used the lawsuit money to start the school. But she wanted one of her own. And you were it. It was perfect.”
“Perfect for everyone except me.”
“Haven’t you been happy? Bev and Ralph are great parents. A shitload better than I could’ve been.” She picked up a piece of bacon.
If you wish to read the whole story, you can find it in ebook for $.99 here:
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