Once Upon a December: A Holiday Short Story Collection

BOOK: Once Upon a December: A Holiday Short Story Collection









Copyright ©2014

Mountain Media



Cover design by T.M. Franklin

Front and back cover image by Dasha Pentrenko and SSilver


What Child Is This cover design by T.M. Franklin

Cover images by ladybirdstudio and ngocdai86


Mistletoe Magic cover design by Jada D’Lee

Cover image by Yulia Gapeenko


The Little Drummer Boy cover design by Jada D’Lee

Cover image by R. Gino Santa Maria


Book formatting by Lindsey Gray

Edited by Wendy Depperschmidt, Shaina Hanson, and Kathie Spitz.


This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.


All rights reserved. No part of this publication can be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without permission in writing from the author.


Any trademarks included in this book are the property of the respective copyright holders. The publication and use of these trademarks are not authorized, associated with, or sponsored by the trademark owners.






What Child Is This?

Mistletoe Magic

The Little Drummer Boy

About the Author







Estranged from his family and the love of his life, Thomas Fisher finds himself stranded in an airport on Christmas Eve. Imagine his surprise when a young boy takes him by the hand and shows him the way home.



Melanie Taylor is on a mission to find the perfect Christmas gift for her husband. Something special. Something expensive. Something that will save her marriage. Can a chance encounter on an elevator make her Christmas wish come true?



It’s Christmas Eve, and Justin Banks is on the hunt for a last-minute gift for his wife, Megan. With the help of a homeless man and the beat of a drum, Justin stumbles upon the one thing Megan has always wanted. The one thing money can’t buy. It's amazing what we can hear if we just take a moment and really listen.






The airport’s full of aggravated travelers, desperate to make it home for Christmas. Thanks to an unexpected snow storm out west, flights in and out of Atlanta have come to a virtual standstill. The monitors flash with cancellations and delays, and with each new screen update, a symphony of groans can be heard throughout the gate area. Behind the counter, equally frustrated ticket agents attempt to please the stranded passengers.

I’ve seen it all. Tears. Screams. Tantrums.

And that’s just from the adults.

As for me? I’m just trying to get to a business meeting.

“Sir,” the agent says to the passenger in front of me, “we’re doing everything we can to get you—”

“You’re not doing enough!” The frazzled man points toward his family standing off to the side. “You explain to my kids why they aren’t going to make it to Grandma’s house for Christmas!”

The woman apologizes again and offers him a hotel for the night. The angry man stalks away to consult with his wife. Shaking my head, I step up to the counter and offer the agent my ticket.

“Good evening, Mr. Fisher. I’m sorry for the inconvenience.”

an inconvenience, but I force a smile anyway. The last thing this woman needs is another irate passenger.

“It’s not your fault. You can’t control the weather.”

She sighs with relief. “Thank you for understanding. Let’s see what we can do to get you to New York as soon as possible.”

“I appreciate that.”

While she works her magic, I pull my phone out of my jacket and scroll through about a hundred unread emails. Unlike the rest of the travelers, I’m not desperate to get anywhere to celebrate the holiday. However, two days after Christmas, I’m scheduled to meet the owner of a stagnant, yet potentially profitable, software company. December means one thing to me— significant end-of-year profits. In our crappy economy, it also means the end of the line for many struggling corporations. That’s when I get to work my own kind of holiday magic. I swoop in, buy the drowning business for mere pennies, and then sell it for a substantial return.

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