Bonus Short: A Monstrous Christmas on the Homestead

This is a short, 7.7k-word story set between books four (Gloam) and five (Moth) of the Monstrous series. It features our big purple monster, Edin; his asshole human lover, Hunter; and Hunter’s best friend, Charlie, having a sweet little Wastes-style Christmas at their homestead before Charlie returns to the military…

Content warnings: Explicit sexual content, 18+ only, restraint, Santa Edin, tail play

Spoiler alert: Set after the events of Edin (Monstrous: Book Two) and just before Moth (Monstrous: Book Five)

“Okay, so I’ve had an idea,” I told Charlie as I joined him in the kitchen, which was a hell of a lot cleaner than it had been when we first arrived at the homestead.

He was sitting at the big kitchen table carefully packing a medical kit, which dampened my good mood considerably.

Charlie was getting ready to leave—to go back to the military. It had been so long that I’d kind of hoped that he’d just… forgotten about going back. That he was just going to stay here on the homestead with us. But nope. He’d said a week ago that he was going back, and Edin and I were going to fulfil our promise to get him safely to the Tennessee base. We were leaving in a week.

I was going to miss the shit out of him. Strangely, I could only say those words to Edin and not to Charlie himself. Edin told me that Charlie might stay if I made it clear how much I’d miss him, but… I was so fucking shit at talking about emotions to anyone but Edin.

“Mm?” Charlie raised a dark brow at me as he stacked up pill packets and slotted them into the little red bag.

“Well, it was actually Edin’s idea.” I sat down opposite him, my lip curling at the sight of his half-packed bag. He’d been slowly gathering supplies from the bunker and basement for the journey back. “I was telling him about the stupid little Christmas celebration you’d make us do if we were ever out on a job in December.”

Charlie snorted, glancing up at me. “Call it stupid all you want, you loved it.”

I grunted. “I tolerated it for you.”

“Whatever, Hatton. What about it, anyway? It’s not even winter yet.”

“No, but it nearly is, and you’re…” I gestured at his pack, trying not to glare at it. “Heading off soon. He wants to do it before you go.”

Charlie put down the medical kit and grinned, his grey eyes brightening. “Yeah? That’d be fun.”

“So you’re up for it?”

“Hell yeah, I’m up for it. We found those Christmas decorations in the attic. We can put ‘em up.”

I snorted. “I think half of them will disintegrate into dust the moment we touch them.”

“I’ll go up and take a look.” Charlie had already abandoned his medical kit and pack, getting up from the table and heading toward the door into the hallway.

“I’ll go tell Edin.” I followed him up but went out the backdoor to the yard, knowing I’d find Edin out there.

It wasn’t warm anymore, but the sun was out, which meant he’d be laying on the deck sunbathing if he had nothing else to do. My gut tightened at the sight of his big body stretched out, gleaming pale purple in the sun. His booted ankles were crossed, bulging arms folded behind his head and eyes closed. His handsome, craggy face split into a grin the moment I stepped onto the deck, fangs flashing.

“Hello, josdo.” His deep, rumbling voice still made my belly swoop—not that I’d ever admit it. “Come here.”

I smirked and went to sit beside him, my skin tingling when Edin blindly reached out and slipped his big hand under my shirt to slide up my back.

I glanced back at the house. Charlie was probably in the attic by now sifting through old Christmas decorations, so I laid down and practically draped myself over Edin, resting my cheek on his warm chest. He rumbled with pleasure and stroked his hand down the back of my head.

“Charlie wants to do the Christmas thing,” I mumbled, tracing the hard dips on his stomach with my fingers.

Edin grunted. “Good. Did you ask him to stay?”

My gut squirmed with discomfort, and I propped myself up on an elbow. “No. If he wants to go back, that’s his choice. He knows I don’t want him to.”

Edin quirked a brow, peeking open one eye to look up at me. “It would be nice to hear it, though, no?”

The discomfort intensified. “He knows, scratch.”

Edin snorted a deep chuckle and grabbed the back of my neck, pulling me down.

“So stubborn,” he murmured before kissing me, catching my bottom lip in his fangs before smoothing away the sting with his tongue. I melted, sliding my hand down his chest and stomach to toy with the band of his kilt.

“Remind me what the Christmas thing is, josdo.” Edin kissed his way along my jaw and down my neck, yanking me closer until I was practically sprawled out over him.

I rolled my eyes. “You were the one who said you wanted to do it.”

“And I do. A little human tradition, one that Charlie enjoys very much—it sounds fun. Maybe it will make him stay. And you said it involves giving gifts.” He palmed my ass and squeezed. “I will give you many gifts, josdo.”

I made a face. “I mean, the point isn’t necessarily the gifts—”

“I will give you many gifts.” His fangs gleamed as he grinned up at me. “Including my big—”

“Alright, scratch.” I raised a brow at him, extracting myself from his gropy hold to sit up. “Charlie and I never did a proper Christmas while we were out in the Wastes. We’d make each other a stupid little gift from whatever we could find, hunt and catch something to roast for meat, and… that was about it. If Charlie could find a small tree or something, he’d decorate it with junk.”

Edin just watched me solemnly with big, purple eyes. “And why did you do all of that, josdo?”

I chuckled. “I don’t know. Because it’s… tradition, I guess? And Charlie wanted to.”

“So we find a tree.” Edin sat up in one smooth, graceful movement, every muscle in his stomach rippling and making my gut lurch. “What kind of tree? Any tree? Does it have to be small?”

He stood up, tail lashing side to side as he placed his hands on his hips and stared out at the forest. “I will get you a big one.”

I choked out a laugh, rising up from the deck. “It’s a specific type of tree. Uh… one of the pointy ones.”

Edin nodded seriously. He turned and grabbed my face between huge hands, jerking my head closer to plant a hard kiss on my mouth. “I will get you a big, pointy tree.”


The point of the gifts we exchanged was that they were silly and pretty much useless. I made sure to try and convey that to Edin before he prowled off into the forest to find a “big, pointy tree” and an animal to roast for our Christmas dinner.

Charlie emerged from the attic juggling two soft, wrinkled cardboard boxes filled with Christmas decorations. He dumped them on the kitchen floor and wandered over, snagging a chunk of carrot that I’d already peeled and chopped.

“Wonder what Edin will hunt for our dinner,” he commented, crunching down.

I chuckled. “I kinda like the taste of wanuk now. Like gamey chicken.”

Charlie nodded enthusiastically. “Yeah. It makes good jerky.”

“So what did you find?” I glanced over at the boxes. “Anything salvageable?”

“Shit yeah. Loads of decorations.” He crossed to the box and squatted down to open one of them, the cardboard top tearing away like tissue paper. “Oops. Are we doing secret Santa?”

I rolled my eyes. “There’s only three of us.”

“Yeah, but we still did it when it was just the two of us.”

I barked out a laugh. “Which was even more ridiculous.”

“Maybe we shouldn’t anyway. I wanna make you both something.” He rummaged through the box and pulled out several gold, red and green baubles.

“Edin’s getting a tree,” I told him, transferring the chopped carrots to the pot I’d already filled with water.

“Awesome.” Charlie pulled out more decorations, including a long coil of old-fashioned garland. “Does he know what kind to get?”

We both paused when we heard a faint, echoing crack come from the forest behind the house. I chuckled and started roughly chopping some dark leafy greens that grew in the garden faster than we could eat them.

“I think so, but it doesn’t really matter, does it?”

“No, it’ll still be good.” Charlie shot me his big, charming grin. “This was a great idea. I’d just be sitting here stressing about going back otherwise.”

I went still, staring down at the chopping board. “You don’t want to go back?”

Charlie was silent behind me for a few seconds before I heard him clear his throat. “No, yeah. Of course I do. I just… You know. It’s still going to be a shitstorm at first.”

I gave a brief nod, keeping my head bent toward the counter as I carefully chopped vegetables.

“You don’t have to go back,” I said in as light a voice I could manage—which wasn’t all that light. It came off as more stilted and awkward. Great. “No one would ever find you out here. We’re safe.”

Charlie snorted and exhaled heavily. “Yeah, I know. That’s… kind of part of it, Hunter. I’m just going to spend the rest of my life alone in the spare room here? While you and Edin build a life together?”

“That’s not what it’s like,” I snapped immediately, spinning round to glare at him. “It’s not me and Edin and then you. It’s all of us, together. Come on, Charlie. You know I’d never treat you like a… a nuisance or a third wheel.”

“I know you wouldn’t.” He stood up from his crouch beside the boxes and came over to pat my chest. “But it doesn’t change the fact that—you’re right. If I stay here, no one would ever find us. I’d just… be alone forever.”

His voice was wooden, as much as he tried to mask it with a carefree tone. I felt a stab of discomfort in my gut, which made me want to promise him ridiculous things. Thing like, Hey, we’ll find you someone if you agree to stay. I almost snorted to myself. What, we were going to go out roaming the Wastes for Charlie to pick a life partner? Get Edin to hogtie them and bring them back here for Charlie to woo?

Charlie had always been the more sociable out of the pair of us. The charming, friendly one who people were drawn to. He’d always been the one more likely to get lucky when we were in a position to get laid if we were in a city. Most folk preferred a smiling, handsome, charming Texan boy over a surly, giant asshole with a scar on his face and a permanent scowl.

He was right. If he did stay here with us, odds were he’d be alone forever. Wasn’t like we got any visitors up here, and I doubted we’d be leaving this place often at all. We didn’t need to.

But… shit, I wanted him to stay. The thought of never seeing him again was devastating, and there wasn’t much that I allowed to get to me that badly. Charlie and Edin were the only important people in my life. When Charlie left, I’d lose half my family in an instant.

I swallowed, staring down at him. My voice was rough when I said, “Not… not necessarily. You might meet someone—”

He snorted. “How? And where? Besides, that’s not… that doesn’t matter. I… I’m going back, Hunter. I don’t have anything else. I think I need that… sense of purpose, you know?”

“You have a purpose here,” I croaked. “Living is enough of a purpose. You don’t have to be living your life for anything greater than that.”

Charlie’s face softened, even as he quirked a brow at me. “Never thought I’d see the day where you would say that, my man.” He clapped me on the shoulder. “I agree. And I know your purpose is here, with Edin, living your lives together. But it’s not mine.”

He stepped away and returned to the boxes of Christmas decorations, picking one up off the floor carefully. “Gonna go start decorating the deck.”

But before he could get outside, we heard Edin’s deep yell.

“Hunter!”

It sounded good-natured rather than anything to worry about, so I didn’t tense up with stress. One of the best things about this place was how remarkably quiet and peaceful it was. Other than the two gentle borolesh, we never saw any other humans or big monsters in the forest.

I wiped my hands on the dishtowel and wandered over to the back door. As I stepped outside, Charlie just behind me, I froze. Charlie and his box bumped into my back with an irritated “Oof”. He barged at my shoulder to get past me.

Then he froze too.

“Edin,” I said faintly, watching my big purple monster drag an enormous ponderosa pine into the backyard from the forest. “That’s… a big tree.”

He grinned at us, fangs flashing in the weak fall sun. His arms bulged as he heaved the massive trunk of the felled pine tree over his shoulder.

“Yes, the biggest!” He grunted as the top of the tree finally emerged from the forest. Charlie and I stared gormlessly as Edin dragged the pine all the way to the edge of the deck. “You said one of the pointy ones. This looked the best.”

Charlie barked a laugh and strode across the deck, dumping the box and jumping down to clap his hand on Edin’s shoulder. “You sure as shit don’t do anything by half measures, do you, champ?”

Edin dropped the tree trunk, which landed with a heavy thud and a frantic rustle of pine needles, and squared his shoulders, placing his hands on his hips as his tail whipped around pridefully.

“You should have the best pointy tree for your Christmas,” he told Charlie with a grin, clapping his hand on his shoulder and making Charlie’s entire body jolt down. “What do I do with it now? Do we burn it?”

“No,” Charlie laughed. “You’re meant to decorate it. But… I have no idea how we’re gonna prop that upright.”

“Gah.” Edin grunted and waved a big hand. “Easy.”

“Scratch, don’t hurt yourself—” I needlessly said, stepping forward as Edin turned and grasped the trunk of the pine.

He shoved the entire tree back just a little, then placed his boot on the roughly split end of the trunk. I blinked in disbelief as I eyed it. It looked like he’d just shoved… the tree over. Used his sheer weight to crack through the trunk and topple it.

Edin’s big hands wrapped around the sides of the thick trunk. Using his boot as counter leverage, he grunted and somehow—somehow—slowly lifted the entire tree until it was upright. Charlie and I followed it, our heads tilting up—and up—to watch the top of the ponderosa shudder gently, dwarfing everything around it—including the house.

“Now that’s a fucking Christmas tree.” Charlie nudged me with his elbow, face flushed with a wide grin.

I rolled my eyes, lips twitching into a smile. “And how you gonna get decorations all over that, champ?”

“More importantly, how are we going to keep it upright?” Charlie noted, and we eyed Edin holding the trunk steady.

He grinned. “That is easy.”

Wrapping his thick arms around the trunk, he bent his knees slightly, and shoved down with all his strength. The earth split beneath the trunk, and the tree jolted down as Edin shoved it into the ground.

“Jesus Christ, Edin,” Charlie spluttered, turning to look at me with wide eyes. “How does he not break you in half every night?”

“Dude,” I barked, shooting him a dirty look even as my face got hot.

“It’s a valid question!” Charlie gestured over at Edin, who had shoved the tree trunk another few feet into the ground. “Look at him.”

I did, and felt my mouth twist into a wide grin. Shit, Edin was so hot—especially when he was showing off his immense strength. His wide back bulged with muscle, shoulders straining and all the veins standing in sharp relief in his arms.

My cock twitched in my pants as I tilted my head, letting my eyes drift down to his ass beneath his kilt.

“Do not ruin my Christmas vibes by getting horny.” Charlie shoved at my shoulder and turned to walk back to the house. “Stop checking out your monster and come help me get the decorations.”

I reluctantly turned to follow him into the kitchen, grabbing the second soft cardboard box and taking it outside while he picked up the garland he’d left on the floor.

“How are you gonna decorate it?” I asked him, setting the box down on the edge of the deck and opening the top.

“Maybe Edin can help me up?” Charlie glanced up at him, and Edin nodded with a grin as he finished shoving an entire fucking tree into the earth like it was nothing. “We’ll just hang some on the front lower bit.”

“Now what?” Edin jumped up onto the deck eagerly, barely even out of breath from felling and dragging an enormous tree to the homestead. “What next?”

I chuckled, crossing over and cupping his big face in my hands. “We need something to roast for dinner, but I can do it.”

“No, I will hunt for you.” Edin tugged me closer and kissed me, then nuzzled at my scarred cheek. “I will hunt extra. You said you have a feast, yes?”

“Hell yeah,” Charlie piped up before I could tell Edin he didn’t need to do more work than was necessary. “I want to eat until I can’t fucking move.”

Edin looked at me earnestly. “Do you also wish to eat until you can’t move, josdo?”

I chuckled. “No, I’m good with eating a normal amount.”

He grinned wickedly, and I knew exactly where his mind went. “Excellent.”

My cock twitched again, especially when Edin gave me a final kiss, with a tiny nip of his fangs, before pulling back.

“I will hunt your Christmas meat,” he announced imperiously, jumping off the deck and striding back toward the forest. His tail swished contentedly, and he patted the trunk of his pine tree—now standing monstrously tall over the deck and the house—as he passed it.

Charlie set about decorating. He concentrated his efforts on the deck, seeing as that would where we would be eating, under the shadow of our new gigantic Christmas tree.

I helped him until Edin returned with a wild chicken, a rabbit and a wanuk slung over his shoulder and a big grin on his face. He passed me his catch with a quick kiss, so I let him take over helping Charlie as I went round the side of the house to the spot where we dressed our kills.

“Can you get the fire going when you’re done?” I called back, looking over my shoulder to see Edin bodily lifting Charlie into the air with his big hands wrapped around his waist.

Charlie burst out laughing, stretching up to hang decorations on the lowest branches of the enormous tree. He shot me a distracted thumbs up as Edin lowered him back down to grab more decorations.

I rolled my eyes and left them to it. Once I’d finished dressing Edin’s catches, I went and built the fire myself, seeing as the pair of them were goofing around like kids as they hung up the rest of the decorations.

Soon the meat was roasting over the fire. I went inside and got the pot of vegetables to boil. This was already way better than any Christmas meal Charlie and I had had out on the field. Actual, fresh vegetables and enough meat to last us several days.

Edin and Charlie had covered the very lower branches of the pine in gaudy, retro decorations. The garland was wrapped around its trunk, for some reason, and Charlie had gone and collected all the solar lanterns from the basement and bunker. Several were hung from the tree, with more dotted around the deck.

Once all the food was on the fire, we split up to go and make each other our crappy little gifts. Charlie and I had a brief bickering match as we both tried to rummage through the cardboard boxes filled with Christmas stuff. He snatched away a stocking before I could grab it, shooting me a smirk as he rose and walked off into the house.

I grunted in irritation, but a second later I found a set of jingle bells tucked into the corner of the box. Glancing over at Edin, who was striding back into the forest, my mouth twitched with a tiny smile as I rose and went inside to start preparing my gifts.


Charlie was teetering on drunk—though he’d call it pleasantly merry—by the time we finished eating our Christmas dinner. He was laughing with Edin about something stupid as I gathered up our plates and the rest of the meat, carrying it all inside to store in containers and place our dishes in the sink.

When I stepped back outside, into the cool darkness of the night, I froze.

Charlie made a long, abrasive sound, kind of like a donkey, as he tried to hold back his snort of laughter. He failed.

“Come sit on Santa’s lap, Hunter,” Edin rumbled, leaning back from his cross-legged position on the deck and gesturing at me with a wide, wicked grin.

He was wearing a red and white Santa’s hat—no, wait, he was wearing two of them. One over each horn.

My face burned pink, and I slowly turned my eyes to Charlie and glared at him. “Did he set you up to this?”

“No, I wanted to fulfil your tradition,” Edin said, and I could hear the laughter he was trying to suppress. “Now, I know much of your human customs. You must come and tell me if you have been evil this year, yes? What was it, Charlie? If he deserves to die?”

“Jesus, no.” Charlie just about pissed himself with laughter, making me roll my eyes as I crossed my arms over my chest. “It’s just if he’s been good or bad. You know… whether he’ll get any presents.”

“Ah.” Edin nodded solemnly, gazing at me with his big purple eyes. “Come, josdo. Let Santa judge you.”

I clenched my teeth together and stalked forward, but I paused when I got to Charlie, who was lolling about on the deck, the bottle of rum still in his hand.

“It’s not nice to make him the butt of a joke, Charlie,” I gritted out, feeling a wave of defensive anger rise up for Edin.

Charlie’s face immediately fell. A stab of guilt shot through my anger when his brows pinched with hurt.

“I wasn’t. I wouldn’t do that, man. I was explaining Santa to Edin and he thought it would be funny to—”

“It was my idea, Hunter.” Edin shot me a wide, fanged grin when I looked over at him. “I knew it would put that surly look on your face. It reminds me of when we met.”

He smiled at me sweetly—too sweetly, which made me snort.

“Okay, fine.” I walked over and sat myself in Edin’s lap, pressing my back to his chest and sighing when his big arms wrapped around me tight from behind.

Charlie cleared his throat, back to smirking at me. “Anyway, you’re the butt of the joke, you jackass. Not Edin.”

I grunted in response, trying not to close my eyes with bliss when Edin nuzzled my neck, just beneath my earlobe.

Charlie looked away quickly, having another sip of rum. I knew he wasn’t jealous of either of us, but his words earlier made me wonder if he was jealous of… what we had. Or maybe not even jealous. Maybe he just really wanted it for himself. And he was right—he wouldn’t get it if he stayed here.

Not unless Danny and Wyn decided to bring an eligible bachelor along with them when they eventually came to visit us.

“Well, that was the best meal I’ve had in a long time,” Charlie announced, patting his flat stomach as he leant back on an elbow. “Thanks, Edin. And you too, Hunter.”

I grunted, distracted by Edin’s big hands slipping under the hem of my shirt to stroke my stomach.

“Shall we do the gifts?” Charlie asked.

That succeeded in stopping Edin’s hands dead.

“Yes,” he said eagerly. “The gifts.”

Charlie grinned and scrambled up, walking unsteadily to the small pile we’d made to the side. “Is gift-giving important to your people, Edin?”

I tensed up, expecting Edin to go stiff against me. He didn’t have any of his people anymore, but that wasn’t Charlie’s fault. He didn’t know that.

But Edin’s big body remained relaxed around me. “Yes, we enjoyed giving trinkets to one another in our pack.” He gave my neck a playful bite. “A way of showing who our favourites were.”

Charlie snorted with laughter as he settled back beside the fire with the hastily wrapped presents, swaddled in old scarves and pillowcases. “Well, I think we all know who your favourite is here.”

“You are my favourite in other ways, Charlie,” Edin told him earnestly, which made Charlie’s cheeks flush with pleasure. Or maybe that was the rum.

“You too, big guy.” Charlie shot me a wide, slightly sloppy grin. “You’re way better than Hunter. Have I said that before? He sucks compared to you.”

Edin boomed out a big laugh, squeezing me closer as I shot Charlie a dirty look. He’d said it plenty of times already, finding it hilarious. At first, Edin had bristled, his arms and shoulders swelling with tension as he glared at Charlie, ready to defend my honour.

When we’d explained it was just a joke, he’d paused, then burst out laughing. And then—much to my aggravation—joined in every fucking time Charlie made the same goddamn joke. Together, they were like annoying little kids.

“Okay, presents,” Charlie announced, just a touch too loud as he squinted down at the gifts in the low light of the fire. “This one’s heavy as shit.”

“That’s Hunter’s,” Edin said immediately, and my brows hiked up when Charlie passed it to me and I realised just how heavy it was.

“Jesus, scratch, did you wrap a brick?”

Edin snickered and kissed the back of my neck. “No. You will see.”

“Okay, this is Hunter’s from me… and Edin’s from me…” Charlie finished handing out the rest of the gifts until we each had two in front of us.

I slid off Edin’s lap so he’d be able to unwrap his. Charlie had a final, noisy gulp of rum before gesturing for us to open them.

I opened mine from Charlie first. It was a stack of tiny brown envelopes, held together with a rubber band. My brows twitched with confusion as I carefully flicked through them, realising each one had the name of a fruit or vegetable written on the front in Charlie’s messy handwriting.

“What’s this?”

“Oh, um, I’ve been drying out and storing the seeds from the stuff we’ve grown, so you can keep growing them.” He shot me a slightly bleary smile. “Was going to give them to you before I left, but thought now would be good.”

Inexplicably, a huge lump formed in my throat as I stared down at the envelopes.

“Charlie, I…” I shook my head. “These are supposed to be silly gifts. Not… good stuff. If I’d known, I—”

“It’s fine.” He grinned at me. “I mean, two years ago you would’ve called seeds a silly gift, wouldn’t you? So…” He shrugged. “Merry Christmas.”

Edin was watching us in silence. My mouth pinched into a tight line to stop myself from blurting out that Charlie should stay here, and when I looked at Edin, he gave me a tiny sad smile.

“Anyway.” I cleared my throat and gestured at the silky, floral patterned short robe Charlie had unwrapped—my gift to him. “Remember when I found one of those in that old hotel down south?”

I knew Charlie wouldn’t care about the pattern, or the fact that it was technically “made for women”, but a short, silky robe was not exactly conducive to surviving a hostile environment like the Wastes.

He snorted a laugh. “Yeah. This one’s in slightly better condition, huh? This is actually nice, man. I’m gonna use this.”

He’d unwrapped his gift from Edin too. It was a narrow crown of pine needles, which Edin had bent and twisted into shape. Charlie fucking beamed as he shoved it on his head.

“A goddamn crown. Edin, this is amazing. Hunter, look. I have a fucking crown.”

“I see it, champ.”

“Open yours, josdo,” Edin rumbled from beside me. I could hear the mischievous smile in his voice.

I realised why when I pulled the scarf off my heavy gift. It took me a few seconds, and Charlie got there first, bursting out laughing. When I finally worked it out, I slowly looked up at Edin.

“Edin, is this—”

“A likeness of my cock, yes,” he said brightly, then made a face. “Well. The best I could find. It’s not quite as big, but… the shape is almost there. Isn’t it, josdo?”

My face flamed as I stared down at the heft of rock in my hand. The long, phallic heft of rock, that… actually, yeah, did kind of resemble Edin’s dick. There was a crack in the stone that almost looked like the vein he had—

“Is this a custom, Edin?” Charlie sounded way too interested. “Or did you literally just see a dick-rock and decide Hunter would like it?”

I shot him a dirty look as Edin laughed. “No, it’s a custom. It is not to be used. It is to remind your mate of what will be returning whenever we had to leave our pack for a night or two.”

Charlie snorted. “Oh, okay, it’s a likeness of your dick that Hunter can stare at longingly when you’re not around.” He gave a serious nod, but his eyes gleamed with mirth—directed solely at me, and solely at my expense. Fucking Charlie. “I understand.”

“Yeah, well, I will,” I snapped, grabbing Edin’s craggy chin and jerking him in for a hard kiss. “Thanks, scratch. I love it.”

Edin beamed and rubbed his cheekbone over my hair. “I am glad, josdo.”

I pulled back and nodded down at the two gifts still in his lap. “Open yours.”

He picked up the one from me first, his head cocking as he unwrapped the loop of jingle bells.

“They’re to go round the base of your tail,” I told him with a smirk, and Charlie groaned and literally flopped back onto the deck, spilling rum.

“So if I hear the rhythmic tinkle of jingle bells in the night, I will not be running out of my room expecting to see Santa.”

“I wouldn’t,” I drawled, grinning when Edin chuckled and actually threaded the bells onto his tail, settling them at the very base on his lower back.

He smirked at me and swished his tail once, the melodic tinkling filling the air over the crackling of our fire. I snorted a laugh and squeezed his thigh, nodding at his final gift.

Charlie had had the same idea as me. He’d wrapped up the stocking and told Edin it was a tail warmer—but only for the last foot or so. Edin laughed and dutifully put it on, though it slipped off the moment his tail gave a twitch.

“Humans are rather fixated on tails,” he noted in a low rumble as he tugged me back onto his lap.

Charlie cocked his head. “Maybe because we don’t have them? I dunno. Yours is cool. It’s like an extra limb—you can literally throw people with it.”

“I can do other things with it too,” Edin rumbled in my ear, making my gut clench with the first low twinge of arousal.

Yeah. Edin liked to use his tail a lot.

“Ugh, I know that look.” Charlie waved us away with a loose hand. “I’ll stay out here a while longer. Go fuck like there’s no tomorrow.”

Edin shot up immediately, trying to haul me into the house, but I stopped him with a chuckle to look down at Charlie.

“Have you had a nice day?” I asked him. “Maybe lay off the booze now, man. You never drink.”

“Yeah, I’m good.” He grinned up at me. “It’s been great. Thank you. Both of you.”

I hesitated for a moment longer before going inside with Edin. It only took me a few steps to slip the bells off his tail with a groan of laughter, the sound already pissing me off.

“Are you alright, josdo?” Edin asked as we thumped up the stairs.

“Yeah, I’m good.” I rubbed my face. I didn’t want to kill the mood, but… “I’m gonna miss him.”

Edin grunted, reaching back and blindly finding my hand as we made our way down the hall to our room. “He will miss you too.”

When we got to our bedroom, Edin hurriedly lit several candles on our nightstands as I closed the door behind us. Once the room was softly lit with flickering, orange light, Edin turned and approached. He cupped my jaw in his big hands, staring at me with big, dark eyes.

“Do you regret your decision, josdo?” he asked me solemnly, making my brows pinch. “To stay here, instead of go back with Charlie?”

“No.” I kissed him hard. “Never. Not for a single fucking second. I love you, scratch. More than anything.”

That made him shoot me a huge, fanged grin, even as his eyes gleamed with emotion. Edin was such a secret softie, which just made me love him even more. My big, soft-hearted monster.

“Although…” I wrapped my arms around his neck and grinned up at him. “Maybe you should remind me of some of the perks I get from staying with you.”

Edin growled and hefted me into his arms, making my cock lurch in my pants.

“Shit, why does it make me hard when you manhandle me,” I grunted as he carried me over to the bed. I quickly pulled the Santa hats off his horns.

“Because you love it when I boss you around.” He deposited me on the mattress and straightened up, standing imperiously beside the bed with his hands on his hips. “Clothes off, Hunter.”

I scrambled to comply embarrassingly fast, yanking off my boots and socks before jumping up to pull off my pants. Edin smirked and decided to help, tugging my shirt up and off before dropping to his knees as he urged me to sit on the edge of the mattress.

Kissing the front of my thigh, his long fingers deftly removed my prosthetic and sock as he glanced up at me with big, deep purple eyes. My cock bucked, already filling up rapidly, and it only got harder when Edin’s gaze drifted down to it jerking under my boxer briefs.

“Didn’t I tell you to take all your clothes off, Hunter?” he rumbled, reaching up and curling his fingers under the waistband of my underwear to yank them down.

I chuckled and lifted my hips, then shuffled back on the bed to lie down. Edin climbed over me, straddling my hips, and I was practically salivating as I greedily took in his huge, ripped body and slid my hands up his thighs under his kilt.

“Is your big dick my final gift, scratch?” I asked with a smirk, my hand creeping up to wrap around his thick length beneath his kilt.

My gut bottomed out at the feel of it. Fuck, it was so hard. And so big.

Edin rumbled out a laugh and leaned down to kiss me. I could feel his tail brushing over my balls as it swished back and forth, making me let out a strangled groan into his mouth.

“Not tonight, josdo.” He scraped his fangs along my jaw. “Tonight, I want your big cock.”

Oh shit. My dick bucked eagerly. I fucking loved when Edin bottomed, because he always did it from the top, so to speak. He was still always in charge, and there was nothing I loved more than being held down and overpowered by my big, purple monster.

Sitting up, he reached out to the nightstand.

“Get it ready for me, josdo.” He smirked at me as he handed over the bottle of oil, standing up to strip off his kilt.

My mouth went dry when his enormous cock sprang up as his kilt pooled around his feet. I’d already slicked up my cock, but I kept stroking as I stared at Edin’s big body, my eyes getting heavy with lust.

“Fuck yeah, scratch,” I rasped as he climbed back on top, straddling me and looking down with a wicked, fanged grin.

He pried my hand off my cock and pinned both wrists to the pillow above my head, making me grit my teeth to hold back a needy moan.

“First I want to feel your tongue, josdo.”

Edin kept my wrists pinned as he knee-walked higher up my body. I sank my teeth into my lower lip, then released it when the hot head of his cock brushed my mouth. It was already leaking, and I couldn’t help but moan as I gave the sensitive V on the underside a wet, licking kiss.

When I looked up at Edin, he was already gazing down at me with a wicked grin, looking every inch a demon. His proud horns curved up over his forehead, the left one ending jaggedly. His lavender skin gleamed in the candlelight. His cock was a hot, heavy weight against my mouth and chin.

I licked again, and Edin snarled. His fingers tightened around my wrists, pushing them harder into the bed, and my eyes slid shut with bliss when he slowly arched his hips, dragging the hot length of his shaft across my waiting tongue.

“Mmm.” I shivered when I felt the thin, sinuous slink of his tail spiral around my straining cock and squeeze. “Fuck,” I gasped, my hips flexing up, then jerking when his tail circled my nuts and tugged.

It continued even lower, sliding down until it brushed over my hole. I grunted, thighs falling open wider. I could feel the sharp, dagger-like tip of his tail brushing my inner thigh, but it only made my cock reel even harder.

“Edin,” I rasped, and I would have been embarrassed by how needy my voice sounded in any other situation.

I tongued his balls feverishly before he dragged his cock back down across my mouth. He gave me time to lick up the pre-cum spilling from the tip before he was moving down my body, his tail curling back around the base of my cock and tilting it up. I shuddered with anticipation, my wrists still pinned by his big hands, my chest heaving with my panting breaths.

My lips parted with a little gasp, head craning back when Edin slowly sank down onto my cock. I shuddered when I felt his tail wind around my balls, cinching tight and making me grin with a wince.

Edin rumbled, transferring both my wrists to one hand so the other could clasp my face as he leaned down.

“So hard already,” he murmured against my mouth. “I will not be happy if you come before I am done with you, Hunter.”

I let out a tight chuckle. “I’ll try my best to hold out, scratch.”

After a firm kiss, he sat up and lifted his hips until just the head of my cock was still inside his hot body. My breath caught, limbs tightening in anticipation. When he sank back down, I couldn’t stop the hoarse groan that left me.

Edin’s cock was flushed a deeper purple, jutting out from his hips and dripping from the head. It jerked with his movements as he started rocking harder and faster on my dick, squeezing tight around it while his tail rippled around my balls.

“Jesus,” I gritted out, flexing my trapped fingers to try and get the blood flowing back through them. I stared at Edin fucking himself on my cock, practically drooling at the sight. He snarled with pleasure, the sharp tip of his tail lashing over the bed and his thick, muscular thighs flexing.

Snarling again with a shudder, Edin trailed his free hand down my chest before fisting his cock and giving it a solid stroke.

“Fuck,” I breathed, struggling to suck in enough air. “That is the hottest thing I’ve ever seen.”

He grunted a breathless laugh, his hips moving faster to match the frantic pace of his hand on his cock. When his big body shuddered with pleasure, he lunged down to kiss me, grunting into my mouth.

“Your cock feels incredible, josdo,” he rasped, then thrust his tongue into my mouth, making me moan. I could feel his knuckles dragging over my tense stomach as he furiously stroked his cock—could feel the drip of his pre-cum on my skin.

Shivers broke out all over, making me go hot and cold, my nuts trying to wrench up and hug the base of my shaft, but Edin’s tail prevented them from tightening. I panted into his mouth, moaning again as our tongues fought for dominance.

“I need to come, scratch,” I mumbled shakily against his mouth when we finally broke apart.

Edin chuffed out a deep laugh and nipped my chin, then my neck. “You like being inside me, josdo?”

“Fuck.” My voice was husky, tinged with desperation. “Yeah—shit, Edin, please—”

He rumbled out a low sound and rubbed his horn against the side of my face before sitting up. His hips moved faster, slamming down again and again. His ass was so hot and tight around me, and when his tail finally unwound from around my balls, I barked out a pleasured shout, my head craning back.

“Edin,” I panted desperately, fingers curling into fists, still trapped above my head. “I’m gonna come—”

“Yes.” He stared down at me from above, his free hand curling around my jaw to hold my head steady, to keep me looking up at him. I swallowed, loving the possessive hold. The restraint on my wrists. His huge, muscular body on top of me, using my cock for his pleasure.

Fuck, he was amazing.

“Edin.” My voice trembled out of me, hips trying to buck up and get deeper inside him. He snarled and slammed down, sinking my cock as deep as it could go.

I shouted in bliss and arched, my vision greying out when hot pleasure exploded from my groin and made all my limbs tingle. My cock flexed inside Edin, flooding him with cum. He snarled again and stiffened above me, hips jerking as his hand lost its smooth rhythm on his length until it spasmed and he grunted out a rough sound.

At the first shot of hot cum that spurted from the tip, we both moaned. He covered my chest and stomach, shuddering over me as my orgasm gradually came to an end.

But he didn’t let go of my wrists. Instead, he shot me a wolfish grin as he dipped his head before dragging his tongue through his release painting my heaving chest. I grinned before he clasped my face, forcing my lips apart so he could dip his cum-covered tongue inside.

I moaned and shivered, swallowing everything he fed me. Only then did he release my wrists, raising them to kiss my palms and down my sensitive inner forearm. I exhaled in bliss, melting down into the bed as my eyes slid shut.

“I love you,” I mumbled, feeling myself already drifting off as Edin rubbed his cheek over my hair before nuzzling my neck.

“I love you too, josdo,” he rumbled, slowly lifting his hips and leaning over to grab my shirt from the floor. He used it to clean the rest of his release off my stomach before lying down beside me and tugging me onto his chest.

I sprawled out over him, my stump dragging over his thick thigh as I caged him in with my limbs. Edin rumbled a sated sound, big hand sliding down my hip and thigh to palm my stump.

“You had a nice human Christmas then?” he asked, nuzzling my temple.

I smirked and kissed his chest. “Yeah, real nice. Thanks, scratch.”

He grunted. “If I could, I would have hunted down a bayhk for its pelt to give you. They live in the forest my tribe came from. Their pelts are prized—bright white with purple stripes.”

I chuckled. “Sounds nice. Maybe we’ll come across one someday.”

“Mm.”

“Do you have any holidays?” I asked him, my voice already slow and lazy with sleepiness. “That we could celebrate?”

He snorted and imperiously told me, “I am of the old races, Hunter. We don’t follow the foolish traditions of the younger folk.”

I lifted my head to shoot him an amused smirk. “Far too important for that, huh?”

He shot me a wolfish grin. “I am the last isdernuc.”

“Sure.” I settled my cheek back on his chest, eyes drifting shut. “Well, thanks for giving me and Charlie one more Christmas before he goes back.”

Edin pulled me tighter to him. “Do you think he will go back?”

“Seems like it.” My brows twitched into a sad frown at the thought. “We’ll make sure he gets there safe, at least. And he knows where we are if he ever decides to leave for good.”

“Mm.”

We fell into silence, and I could feel myself drifting off. I fucking loved it here. How peaceful it was. How quiet it was. How simple our life together was, growing food and hunting and chopping firewood and just… being.

I nuzzled Edin’s chest, breathing in his wood and leather scent and soaking up his warmth, content in the knowledge that I would get to do this for the rest of my life.


Copyright 2021 by Lily Mayne

All rights reserved.