Lupine: Bah Humbug!
It's baby Luna's first Christmas, but not everyone is excited!
Enzo Rossi hates Christmas... He's not completely sure why but he's always had a particularly strong dislike for the festivities.
It's a feeling that isn't shared with his mate Lupine and the rest of his family. They're all crazy excited about celebrating the holidays together.
But can they convince Rossi that some Christmas traditions are worth keeping?
Lupine: Bah Humbug is a Lupine bonus story from USA Today Bestselling Author, Hanleigh Bradley. This story belongs to the Silver Springs shared universe and is written from Enzo Rossi's POV.
Growing up in the mafia, we didn’t really do Christmas. At least not the way most people do. I was lucky if both my parents were home for the holidays; one of them was usually off somewhere else committing murder or something equally sinister. And even if they were both around, our house was usually full of mobsters talking shop.
I always got presents though. My parents were big on presents, not that they were usually there to watch me open them. We didn’t do the rest of the festive stuff. We didn’t sing carols. We didn’t decorate a Christmas tree. And my mom definitely never roasted a turkey with all the trimmings. My mom wasn’t much of a cook. In fact, I’m not sure she even knew where the kitchen was in our house. That’s what the servants were for.
Lupine thinks my childhood experience of Christmas is horribly sad. She gives me this devastated look every time it comes up, like she feels sorry for me. Apparently, even growing up in an orphanage, Lupine has the best Christmas memories. She says that’s how it’s supposed to be.
Although, I’m not completely convinced about that. I’m not sure that most people actually go all out for the holiday the way Lupine and the rest of our family are doing.
It probably sounds like I’m exaggerating or something. Lupine has been making me watch all these old Christmas movies, and every time I grimace at the thought of another one, she calls me Scrooge. Maybe she’s right. I’m definitely not in the festive mood.
But it’s a little bit difficult when they’ve been celebrating for a month and a half already. It’s not even Christmas yet but there are Christmas songs playing on the radio in the kitchen as several of the younger children do their homework and Lupine is humming along. I don’t understand it. I want to throw the bloody radio out the window. The only thing holding me back is the look on Lupine’s face when I disappoint her.
That’s not something I want to see.
Not now. Not ever.
What’s worse, is that it’s not just Lupine and the kids. That I could handle. But all the guys are in on it. They’re just as excited as Lupine. Kelan is shopping like some shopaholic housewife for gifts for the children, especially Luna. Our little wolf is going to have so many fucking presents that we’re going to have to extend the orphanage again.
Lupine looks up as I enter the room. “Alright love?” she asks sweetly.
Her tone is perfectly innocent, not suggestive at all and yet it does something to me, sending fire through my veins. If I could have my way, I’d put her over my shoulder, right now, and carry her up the stairs to our bedroom so I can fuck her.
That’s not an option though so I ignore the way my dick is straining against my jeans and go to sit next to her, kissing her on the head. Just a few hours… A few short hours and then we can put the kids to bed and fuck like rabbits.
“Can’t complain,” I mumble. It’s a lie. There’s a lot I could complain about, most of it relating to all this festive shit, but I won’t. I’d happily suffer through Christmas every day so long as it keeps that smile on her face, but I’m not going to tell her that. It’s far too easy to imagine her agreeing to three hundred and sixty-five days of Christmas.
I shudder at the thought before going on to tell Lupine all about my day, anything to distract myself from my need to take her upstairs and fuck her like crazy. The distraction doesn’t last long, though. I haven’t exactly done much with my day and quickly run out of things to tell Lupine.
Lupine’s other mates have all found their home here in Silver Springs. The Cortesse mafia runs the Fit in a Spell gym for supes and that keeps the others pretty busy. My mafia hasn’t quite found their place in town yet.
And the less they have to do, the more chance there is of them causing trouble. The last thing I need is for Castalia to turn one of my men into a pig again. We’ve only just got Leon changed back.
It’s not just them either. I’m not used to having this much free time on my hands.
When I’m not helping Lupine with the children, I’ve tried making myself useful at Fit in a Spell but there’s something about following Wren Detti’s orders that just doesn’t sit well with me.
“Enzo,” a tiny voice breaks into my thoughts, “will you help me?”
Looking down at the small child tugging at my Armani trousers, my trademark smirk widens. Remmy, one of the beaver siblings, is clutching the expensive material of my trousers with glue covered hands. When I first moved into the orphanage, I would have panicked at the mere idea of getting glue on my Armani suit trousers.
Now, it’s just something that comes with the territory.
“What do you need, Remmy?” I ask, mussing his hair.
“I can’t make a paper chain!” He holds up two multi-colored slips of paper. “Farley’s paper chain is already on the wall.”
I struggle to hold back a laugh–not wanting to upset the small beaver–even if I do find it completely ridiculous that he’s comparing himself to a sibling so much older than himself. I imagine if I’d had brothers and sisters growing up, I’d have been much the same.
I’ve always been incredibly competitive.
“Pass the glue then,” I say, holding out my hand. Living in a house full of children, I’ve grown rather adept at handicrafts. Something I never would have thought possible only a year or so ago.
“Rossi, I thought you hated all this Christmas stuff,” Rehan laughs as he enters the room. I almost expect him to come over and mess with my hair, the way we do the children. The Cortesse guys haven’t fully accepted me, or at least I don’t think they have.
“I do,” I tell him honestly as I fiddle with the paper pieces, looping them around one another.
“Right—” Rehan doesn’t look convinced.
“PINEY!” comes a scream from the doorway to the garden as Evangeline, Larissa and Ariella rush in from the cold. “Castalia says she’s going to turn us into pigs!”
“No, I didn’t,” Castalia retorts irritably, barging past the others.
“I should hope not!” Lupine gets up from the table, giving all four girls a stern look.
“She wasn’t actually going to do it,” I say. “Castalia learned her lesson at Halloween.”
“Was too!” Larissa retorts angrily. “I saw it.”
Usually, I wouldn’t argue if one of the creepy twins were to say something would happen. They’d know, after all. But there’s something about the look she’s giving me that makes me think she’s being less than honest.
“Sure, you did and pigs fly.”
“Castalia did say she’d make us fly,” Evangeline says, her voice saccharine with fake innocence.