“Listen, Sam. I don’t care who you have to sleep with to get me out of here, but you do it.”
“I’m going to pretend I didn’t hear you say that Cryus,” Sam mutters into the phone. She’s pissed, but I don’t give a fuck. I’m not exactly happy.
“You’re my agent. I hired you to take care of this shit. I don’t want to play for a fucking team called the Mistletoe Moose! I don’t like the damn cold. All I’ve seen since I’ve hit Montana is snow.”
“Cyrus, you whine more than my three-year-old. Jesus, you haven’t even made it to Mistletoe! Give it a chance. You may love living there,” Sam gripes.
“I’ll have you know I just crossed into the outer limits of Mistletoe—whatever in the fuck that means,” I growl.
“The outer limits?” Sam questions.
“That’s what the sign said,” I answer with a sigh.
“Sounds like something science-fictiony to me,” Sam responds and I almost smile.
I like Sam. She’s a good agent and she’s not steered me wrong, but I’m not happy about being downgraded to a damn team in Montana that no one has heard of. I love baseball. I live for it. Since hurting my pitching arm, it feels like my dream is slipping through my fingers and I’m more pissed off about that than anything else. Honestly, I’m scared. Baseball is my world. If I lose it…
I banish the thought from my head. It’s not going to happen. My arm will heal, and I’ll get back to the top of my game. I won’t allow any other outcome. I’m about to apologize to Sam and tell her to forget it when I apparently drive into the heart of downtown Mistletoe.
Or fuck, maybe it’s the North Pole.
My first warning is a large, fancy wooden sign that reads, “Welcome to Mistletoe,” with lighted reindeers jumping around the top of the sign. It’s a two-lane street of what looks like an old German village—the damn streets are paved in brick. Colored lights and sparkling Christmas trees line both sides of the street and each light pole is white and wrapped with red ribbon, so it resembles a giant candy cane. Hanging off the top of the poles are garland decorated snowmen that were lit up and twinkled even in the daylight. The buildings all had red and white awnings and wooden signs hanging out and the names I read caused a sense of surreal disbelief inside of me.
Jingle All the Way Carriage Rides.
Mistletony Florist Shop.
Whiskey Holiday Bar.
The names were unreal to me, almost as unreal as the vibe of the whole town. Then, I saw a diner and nearly lost it.
“Jesus, Sam. You have to get me out of here. It’s like a movie set in the freaking North Pole. I expect Santa Claus to jump…Oh fuck.”
“Cyrus? Are you okay?”
“Sam, I’m not shitting you right now. There’s a fucking Santa Claus on a Harley parked by the Courthouse.”
“Oh! I saw those decorations. My husband wanted to buy one for our front yard,” Sam laughs, but I’m shaking my head no—even before I explain.
“No, Sam. This is a real man, dressed as Santa, and standing beside a Harley and he’s dancing.”
I hit the button to crack the window and immediately I hear the Christmas music blaring. Santa’s dancing away and he turns so that his back is to me and he starts shaking his ass in ways I didn’t think a guy his size could do. Just as mind blowing were the name of the streets that you could take.
Frosty’s Way. Rudolph’s Lane. Comet’s Corner. There’s even a St. Nick Drive.
“You need to call the GM and demand I’m traded right away, Sam. I’m not fucking with you. You leave me here and my balls are going to dry up.”
“You’re overreacting, Cyrus. It’s Christmas! Every single town in America decorates for Christmas,” she chastises.
“Not like this, Sam.”
“Yeah, right. Listen—”
“Sam, the theater is called Tinsel Town Theater—”
“Cyrus,” she growls.
“And they’re showing a double matinee of Miracle on 34th Street and Prancer. I can’t stay here, I’m liable to get murdered by a fat guy coming down my chimney and the local-yocals will just say it’s normal for this time of year.”
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