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General Excerpt from Christmas Eve on Olympus

Adult Short Story Fiction by Lisa Beth Darling


Ares stood there basking in the simple joy of his son's awe and his wife's beauty. She was glowing as much as the candles as she stooped there in the red velvet cloak trimmed in white fur he'd given her, the cowl drawn up and over her head with its silver hair sparkling to match her eyes. Ares looked down at Raven, "Now you have to hurry off to bed so that Santa can come and leave you a present."

"Oh, do I have'ta?"

"I'm afraid so," Alena agreed with a grin before scooping him up and carrying him inside. "It's the only way Santa will come."

"I can think of another way Santa might come. . .or two or three."

Raven looked up at his father with questioning eyes but Alena did so in admonishment as she blushed. "Don't listen to him, Raven, come on."

In the Throne Room, Raven picked out cookies to leave for Santa because his mother said Santa liked that and that it was always good to give something back. Alena took a gift from under the tree and presented it to him. "This one you get to open tonight."

Raven's eye lit up as he grabbed the squishy package from his mother's hands and then tore into it to find new pajamas, robe, and slippers. "Awww."

"Uh-uh," Alena chided, "everyone gets new pj's on Christmas Eve its tradition. Don't you like them?"

Raven looked down at the clothes in his hands; they were blue and black plaid flannel. Very soft, he brought them to his cheek and rubbed them along his skin. "Nice," he said changing his mind. His old pjs didn't fit very well since he was growing so swiftly and the new slippers would keep his feet warm. "Thank you."

"That's better," Ares said from behind Raven.

"You're welcome. Now come, let's put them on and get into bed. Santa will be here very soon."

Upstairs in his room, Alena and Ares tucked Raven into his bed and told him he had to go right to sleep and there was no peeking to be had or Santa would be mad. Raven promised to go right to sleep. To ensure that was the case, Alena stretched out on the bed with her son in her arms, his head resting on her breast as he cuddled to her. "'Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse."

For the next few minutes, Ares stood in the doorway watching and listening as Alena recited the old Christmas poem from memory she didn't miss a word, a syllable, or a beat. By the time Santa was bidding All a Good Night, Raven was snoring away, worn out from the busy day.

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