Hello and welcome, Rainbow Advent Calendar followers! Welcome to Day 4! For those of you who don't know me, I'm Edie Montreux. I write a little bit of everything m/m, from contemporary holiday romance to 1990's historical romance (not my words, I swear it was just yesterday). I have paranormal vampires (Uncertain Future, Grave Throbbing) and spirits (Haunted Hollywood Ever Afters series), epic fantasy series with magic (Farbonnur Elves, Romancing the High Seas), and a non-magical cozy fantasy romance standalone (Off the Wall). Find all of my non-mpreg books here: https://www.amazon.com/Edie-Montreux/e/B07LC56Z8J
I also write mpreg under Edie Monte!
This little m/m romance meet cute is part of the Uncertain Future vampire world and features a vampire sex worker, a VIP room snafu, and a nerdy virgin too smart for his own good.
Merry Christmas Santa by Edie Montreux
The coolest thing about being a vampire is, after a few hundred years, nobody remembers your real name. Since I frequented taverns, bars, nightclubs, what have you, where 'everybody knows your name,' it benefited me to change mine the moment my final immediate relation passed away.
What was my real name? Why would you ask? That's not the story I'm gonna tell you. Tonight's story is a Christmas story. Tonight, you can call me Santa. Well. Anytime, really. I changed my name to Santa a few decades ago. My sire liked to say I had so many gifts. I gave him a silver blade to the heart. Needless to say, I changed my name and tried to vanish from Empress Marcella's radar. When she showed up in Boston earlier this year, I almost shit a brick, figuratively speaking. BUT I digress.
Imagine, if you will, the VIP lounge at the best vampire bar in all of Boston ...
"Who wants to sit on Santa's lap?" I hollered to the crowd outside the door to the VIP room. December's flashing neon sign called it Santa's Workshop, which wasn't quite true. My workshop was in the room behind it. I fabricated all kinds of cool sex furniture and machines for our revolving calendar of cool themes. November had been The Gobbler, a stand-up cutout of a turkey with a hole for my dick. Now that my friend Greed and her brother Key had moved on to sweet jobs with the vampire council, I could tailor the gimmicks to me, my favorite person.
Speaking of Greed, she waved from the bar. Holy shit, her brother was with her, and was that his boyfriend? I cringed when they kissed. His boyfriend was hot, and I kinda wished he was kissing me.
Nah. I tamped down the feelings of inadequacy and made my way through the crowd toward them.
"Hey, Santa," someone yelled from behind me. I turned, and the gorgeous someone pointed to the VIP room door.
"Back in a minute," I said. "Hold your horses." Not like people actually had horses nowadays, but it was still fun to say, especially when the guy flipped me off and folded his beefy arms over his chest. Damn. I would definitely come back for more of that, but first ...
"Hey, if it isn't my two favorite elves!"
"Santa!" Greed grabbed my chin and kissed both cheeks when I drew near. "We've missed you!"
I doubted that. I'd practically begged Key to invite me over when I'd helped him pack the moving van on November 1, and now here it was, December 4, and I still hadn't seen the inside of their swanky apartments.
"I've been meaning to call you," Key said as he kissed both of my cheeks, the same as his sister. He pointed over his shoulder to the quiet vampire still seated on his bar stool. "This is Harley. Harley, Santa."
Harley offered his hand instead, and I shook it, giving him a smile. He didn't seem like the type of vampire to posture, and he didn't crush my hand in his grip, which I appreciated. Key had found a good one.
"Thank you for the ... coffin," Harley said. "It's ... interesting."
"Oh, Harley." Greed laughed at him and handed him a tumbler of blood with a pink umbrella in it. "Santa's an old friend. You can tell him you like the new sex toy he made you."
I did my best not to laugh at Harley's discomfort and flashed Key a sympathetic grin. "I see your sister hasn't stopped giving you grief for every little thing."
"She has not." Key held out his arm, and Greed left her stool to stand at his side as his armrest. "She's shared the love with Harley, as you can see."
Harley raised his glass before downing half of it in one gulp. I hadn't had my fill of blood, either, so I asked the bartender to bring me one. It would be the cheapest they had for the staff, but at least it was a step above the synthetic stuff.
"What brings you in tonight?" I asked once I had my drink in hand.
"Work party," Greed said.
"Here?" Things were really improving at the council if they'd started partying at Fanglory.
Greed laughed. "At the hotel down the street. We all decided it was boring and came here instead." She was interrupted when a dark-skinned woman with jet black hair slipped between her and the empty barstool and gave her a kiss on the cheek. "Ah, there she is! Santa, this is my girlfriend, Ithande."
She nodded and offered her hand to me as well. She didn't bat an eye at the name. Neither did Harley. Maybe the nostalgia was wearing off.
"Greed has told me so much about you," Ithande said. "Did you really let a whole room full of guys circle jerk onto you while you were deep throating someone else?"
"It was my birthday." It had been fun, but at the end of the night, I'd gone home alone. That part hadn't been so great. I glanced at Key and Harley, who sat with their heads together, whispering about something romantic, from the way Harley was blushing.
My birthday would be here in March, a big round one with two zeros at the end. I'd never really wanted to reach 200, but here we were. I'd never thought I would reach an age where I thought bringing multiple people pleasure each night was ... boring.
Boring. There. I said it. My life was fucking boring. Predictable. Same old. Everything I thought a monogamous relationship would be. Bo-ring.
But the night was young, my tumbler of blood rejuvenated me, and the line at the VIP room was growing. Time for me to get back to work.
"I'll see you all later."
"I'll call you," Key promised as I walked away.
"Uh-huh. Sure you will."
The phone in my pocket buzzed, and thanks to my vampire reflexes, I had it in my hand before the notification disappeared.
"We're having a party on Christmas Eve," Key sent with an address.
I grinned at the message. It was nice to have plans for one of only two nights a year Fanglory was closed.
I returned to the VIP room. No circle jerks tonight. It was one-on-one time with whoever wanted to sit on my lap.
Instead of the beefy bicep guy at the front of the line, there were two tall, thin college-age guys holding a shy twink in glasses between them. I recognized them from a couple of nights ago. They'd been there to close the bar down and both had paid for their own VIP treatment.
"Hey," the taller one with a flat top said.
"Ho-ho-ho," I said. "What do we have here?"
"This is Boz," the shorter one with a faux-hawk and sparkly pink shirt said, pointing to the shy twink. "He's still a virgin."
Fuck no. "This is no place for virgins."
The college boys smirked at each other, and I had a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach, like the one I got when I ate human food.
"We were virgins until two nights ago," flat-top said.
There was a God, after all, and he fucking hated me.
"Boz is a grad student at MIT. He's just wrapped up his final exams and he's working on his last few assignments. Are you really going to let him graduate a virgin?" Faux-hawk's round eyes were dusted with glittery shadow.
I studied Boz as he shook loose from his companions and stared me down, his arms akimbo as he looped his thumbs through his jeans' belt loops. "I don't need a whore. Whatever you paid this guy was too much."
Oh, it was on. "Ho-ho-honey, I'll do you for free, and you can see how good I am."
He frowned at me, scrunching his perfectly sculpted eyebrows together. He was pretty in a way that would have seemed ugly if someone had described him to me. His cheekbones were too high. His mouth was too wide. His eyes were pond green with flecks of gold in them. His teeth were too white behind those perfectly kissable lips, and his tongue was sharper than a dagger as he cut me with it again.
"We're done here." He raked his eyes over me from head to toe, taking in my red suspenders, white furred belt, red velvet pants, and black boots. "Please take me back to Cambridge."
"You're walking home if you don't do this," flattop said.
"You need to release some of this stress," faux-hawk said.
"Hey, whatever you decide, you need to get out of my line." I motioned for the next person to come forward. It was the guy with the huge biceps. I was sad to see his legs were not as thick once he was out of his jeans, but that was the way of it sometimes. We had fun, and then it was time for the next person in line.
Five hours and two thousand dollars later, I was all fucked out, my customers were happy, and the bartender was talking to our only remaining customer. Even after I showered and changed into jeans and a Grinch t-shirt, the lone customer was still sitting where my friends had been earlier, both elbows on the bar counter. I zipped up my pants and sauntered over. "Closing time," I said. "You have somewhere you need to be, sugar?"
Even before he turned, I smelled my mistake. The virgin with the poofy curls and glasses had smelled like pina coladas. He still did, now stifled with a heady mix of gin and tonic and rum and Coke.
"They fucking left me here," he said. "I've called them nonstop, but they won't answer, and all my texts are on read."
"I have a car," I said, "and I know my way to Cambridge, if you want a ride."
He looked me over again. This time, he was a little less haughty, but still nowhere near trusting. "You're a vampire."
"You're an asshole," I replied, "but I'll still drive you home."
"You won't try anything?"
"The way I see it, your money left with them. Is that right?"
"Nothing happens unless I get paid. You're safe."
"What about blood? How do I know you won't take a drink from me on the way?"
I laughed and turned to Jameson, the bartender. "How does he know I won't drink from him?"
"Well, you've had blood tonight, on the house."
"If it will make you feel better, I'll stop at the drive-through before we leave town. We're not animals, kid."
"It's Boz," he said as he shoved his glasses further up his nose.
"Do you want a ride home or not?" I asked. I felt sorry for him, but he was grating on my last nerve.
The "please" did it for me. He was cute in that soft way humans had when they were pretending to be hard in the face of danger. The set of his shoulders and the fear smell beneath all that alcohol brought out the predator in me. Fear mixed with a hint of lust, I noticed as I took a step closer to help him off the bar stool. "My car's out back. See you tomorrow, Jameson."
'Not if I see you first," he said. "It's my day off." Normally, I would have bantered with him for another five minutes to see how he'd spend his day off, and who with, but I wanted to get Boz home before it got much later.
"Nice car," he said when I opened the passenger door for him. "Vintage."
"I bought it new." I swung the door shut, and he almost banged his nose on the glass as he stared at me in disbelief. It was a 1966 Chevelle with more miles on it than any American-made muscle ever should, even though I'd never driven her out of the state.
"New?" he asked when I slid into the driver's seat. "This is a 1966!"
"What part of vampire was confusing to you? My 200th birthday is coming up in a few months."
"Two hundred." Boz whistled. "I thought vampires were supposed to have their shit together by now." He flinched. "I mean, the car is awesome, and --"
"No, you're right. I lost a goldmine in the stock market crash in '29 and haven't really recovered."
"That was almost a century ago."
"Are you judging me by my job?" I asked. I had fucking had it with these American prudes and their views on sex work. Granted, I was also American, born and raised here, thanks to British colonialism and Irish immigration, but I'd lived in Amsterdam with my sire long enough to pick up on a few Old World views, the best of which was their view on the oldest profession.
He clung to the passenger door as I started the car and put her in gear, squealing the tires as I pulled out of the parking lot. He didn't speak, so I chose to educate him instead of tossing him out while we were moving.
"I own my apartment building. I don't need to work."
That got his attention. He loosened his grip on the door and sank into the passenger seat as I steered us into the line at Blood Drive. We were two cars back from the order window. Plenty of time.
"I do it to provide a service. Look at me. I have the perfect body for this." My sire had turned me for my perfect abs and long, flowing platinum blond hair. I'd cut it years ago, around the time of Fabio, knowing it would take centuries for it to grow back, but I didn't care. I was tired of looking like a romance novel cover when I wasn't romance novel material.
"Vampires don't get or spread human diseases, and I like sex. It's fun."
"Fun?" Boz looked at me like he couldn't believe it. "It's terrifying."
"All the pressure to be good, make it good for the other person, don't slobber on them, don't be gross..."
"Who were you trying to sleep with, a neat freak?"
He snorted. "Maybe?"
Now I felt bad that I'd turned him away. I should have taken his friends' money and given him an experience so mind-blowing he would still talk about it in a decade.
I handed him my phone as I pulled up to the drive-through window. "Add yourself as a contact."
"You need a hookup. Not tonight, since we don't have time."
The Blood Drive barista was waiting for my order, so I gave it to her and pulled ahead before I turned back to him. "You need to be wined and dined, and then fucked out of your little mind. I think I can arrange that on my next night off."
"Why not?" I studied him again, from his bushy curls to his slender nose, barely holding up his wire-rimmed glasses, to his thin and slightly furry arm. I wanted to see his chest and legs, to see if the rest of him was covered with that thin coat of dark hair.
"I'm not ... a catch."
"You're attractive," I said. "You must be fucking brilliant to go to MIT, and you were smart enough to shut your damn mouth when I was ready to throw you out of a moving car. I wouldn't mind spending a night with you."
"One night." He seemed disappointed.
"One night, and then you won't be so nervous when you meet someone you want to fuck, or date, or whatever it is you do with these people who think sex is gross."
He laughed, and something in my gut stirred. I liked the sound. Even more disturbing, I enjoyed being the one to inspire him to laughter. So much so that I reverted to my inner poet, apparently. I hadn't thrown around phrases like "inspire to laughter" for over a century. Back when I'd believed in love and other fairy tales.
I inched forward in the line until I was finally able to pay for my cup of blood and grab it from the cashier. I took two hasty sips before setting it carefully between my legs. My beautiful '66 was many things, but practical wasn't one of them.
"I can hold that for you, if you'd like."
"It's safer with me," I said. I drove fast and had better reflexes than the human beside me.
He conceded with a sigh. "I get it. You think I'm worthless, too."
"I didn't say that." He was going to be fun to take apart and mold into a sex god made of nothing but pure desire. I was looking forward to that.
"My friends think I'm worthless," he said. "They say I'm no fun because I'd rather study than go to Boston for the weekend."
"There's nothing wrong with studying," I said. I'd done my share of it over the years, from carpentry when I was young to the arts with my sire, to whatever the fuck I fancied nowadays. I liked to learn new things, even if I didn't use them daily.
"You're nothing like what I assumed," Boz said as we pulled onto the highway that would take us to Cambridge. "I thought you would be a dumb jock type."
"Because I have muscles?" He nodded, and I laughed. "They're permanent. I spent a lot of time raising houses and building cabinetry before I was turned. The vampire virus let me keep the body without all the upkeep."
"Interesting." He sighed. "I wanted to study medicine, more specifically, the vampire virus, when I was a kid, but my father is an accountant, so he sent me to business school."
"You're getting your masters? Or doctorate?" He was older than I thought, or smarter.
"Master of Science in Business Analytics," he said. "I even have a job working with vampires lined up, but I know nothing about them. You."
"Where's the job?"
"Boston. Another reason my friends thought I needed to go to the vampire bar."
I was almost too afraid to ask, but I had to know. "Are you working for Imperial Accounting?"
Fuck. The empress herself. "I hear it pays well."
"It will pay better if I make it six months, but I've never lived anywhere as big as Boston. I'm sure I'll get lost on my first day and then spend a month hating myself for it."
I had a feeling Boz spent a lot of time hating himself, regardless. I felt for him. I'd had my own bouts of poor self-esteem, but they'd been all thanks to my sire.
He asked me more questions about being a vampire, and I answered to the best of my ability. Some, I didn't know how to answer because I didn't remember, like what it felt like being turned, or what it was like to have super speed and strength. They were my speed and strength now.
When we reached town, he directed me to turn with better precision than the GPS on my phone. When I pulled up to his dorm, I motioned for him to sit tight while I reviewed his contact information in my phone and sent him a text.
"There. You have my number now. Text me when you move in, and I'll give you the nighttime tour of Boston."
"I'd like that." Boz's smile was soft and a little apologetic. "I'm sorry I was such a dick earlier. Thanks for the ride."
"You're welcome, and I have a thing for assholes. And dicks. If you know what I mean." I winked, something I'd perfected in the mirror long before I became a sex worker.
Boz blushed and muttered something that sounded like "Good night."
"Merry Christmas, if I don't see you before then!" I couldn't help it. I was still dressed for the season, and a snow shower dropped glistening stars into our midst.
"Merry Christmas, Santa."
My name sounded magical on his lips. I had to hear it again. I would make sure of it.
I drove home and planned, the same way as I would plan every detail of one of my VIP room fabrications. Our date, or whatever it would become, would be perfect.
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If you're looking for more holiday goodness from me, I have an angsty enemies to lovers romance, New Year Not You. If you love small town political rivalry and huge misunderstandings, this book is for you!
If you want to know more about Harley, Key, and Greed, you can find them in Grave Throbbing!
If you want to know more about sire bonds and Empress Marcella, you can start with Uncertain Future!
Thanks so much for reading! Happy holidays!