Authors: Viola Grace
Tags: #Magic, #Shapeshifter, #Holiday, #Adult, #Elves, #erotic Romance, #Fantasy, #Paranormal
Prancer loves big machines, and what gets a person in the mood for Christmas like a snow plow?
Prancer has no problem with her place on the team, but she wants to experience some of the wonderful new vehicles she has been seeing every Christmas Eve.
When she enters the human world, she assigns herself to drive a snow plow. It is everything she wants at a safe distance from any and all human interference. She wants to watch them, not be among them.
It worked out well for her until the night she hit the snowman on the side of the road, and it was occupied.
Merkoss thought he was on his way to intercepting one of the reindeer with a few weeks to go. He leaves the workshop and ends up encased in a snowman, moving through time as well as space. After being struck by the snow plow, he finds himself facing his target, but he only has twenty-four hours to convince her that she should return to the workshop. Time is of the essence.
The characters and events in this book are fictitious. Any similarity to real persons, living or dead, is coincidental and not intended by the author.
Copyright © 2015 by Viola Grace
©Cover art by Carmen Waters
All rights reserved. With the exception of review, the reproduction or utilization of this work in whole or in part in any form by electronic, mechanical or other means, now known or hereafter invented, is forbidden without the express permission of the publisher.
Published by Viola Grace
Look for me online at violagrace.com, amazon, kobo, B&N and other eBook sellers.
Sleighing Her Elf
Operation Reindeer Retrieval Book 3
Prancer opened the small box and took out the snowflake. “So, what do I do with it?”
Ru smiled. “It is how the elves meld with the human world. I am pretty sure you can manage it, Prancer.”
“Penny. Call me Penny.”
Ru nodded. “Righto. Penny it is.”
“How much time do I have?”
“Well, it is eight weeks until Christmas, so keep track of the day, and on the twenty-third, head home.”
Penny nodded. “I can hardly wait to feel what it is like to be alone in the human world.”
Ru grinned. “Then, stop talking and get going. The sooner you are on your way, the sooner you can begin your new experiences.”
Penny nodded and pressed the concentrated magical snowflake between her breasts.
In a moment, she went from the workshop to the human world, and she was standing in front of a huge machine. Her eyes went wide and someone called out, “Rancer! Get your ass in that machine. The highways aren’t going to clear themselves.”
With a grin, she climbed the ladder and situated herself in the cab, the magic of the snowflake told her what she needed to do and her spirit of adventure started up the monster under her.
When it warmed up, she checked her maps and rumbled forward, out of the yard and into the sea of white. Between her map, her compass and her GPS, she got on the highway, put the blade down and started plowing.
Penny winced as she covered another car in the ditch. There were no signs of occupation, so all she could hope was that the owners of the vehicle remembered where they parked.
After nearly eight weeks of working as Penelope Rancer, snow plow driver, she knew her route and the dangers of it, like the back of her hand.
Driving along a snowed-in highway was not something she would wish on anyone. In the mountains, it could turn deadly if folks weren’t careful, and if they were on the road, careful wasn’t one of their strong suits.
She played her favourite tunes as she drove along, but the whiteout beyond the glass of her cab was a little distracting. With the blade down, she had to calculate every move, and a check in her mirrors told her that she was leading a parade of folks who wanted to get where they were going. They were depending on her to run them to another cleared road, and she was going to do it.
Her time in the human world had been surprisingly educational. She loved time alone. Two times, she had dated co-workers, but since each of the men had forgotten their night together a day later, it had made her want to concentrate on her work.
Each day that the sun was bright and her services weren’t needed, she spent in her small cabin in comfy clothing watching a crackling fire and reading books. Fairy tales were her favourite.
She continued her shift, burying car after car and wincing every time.
At four in the morning of the twenty-second, she headed for home. She was plowing the right lane clear, and to her astonishment, she saw a snowman up ahead. She tried to turn to avoid it, but the flying edge of the arc of snow she was creating caught him. She heard herself scream as human limbs became visible as the snowman shattered.
She stopped her plow and got out, ignoring the small bites of snow against her skin. She skidded through the knee-deep drifts and fought her way to the man on the side of the road.
Man may have been an incorrect statement. She was looking at an elf. “Son of a bitch.”
He was lying in the snow, all golden and pretty, but she could see bruises surfacing. “Come on.”
She grabbed him by the arm and hauled him upright, walking him to her plow and pulling him bodily into the cab. There wasn’t really room for him, but she put him in the seat and climbed in his lap. With a grunt and some focus, she got them moving again, and ten minutes later, she turned into her driveway, parking next to her cabin.
Her unfortunate victim was still dazed when she pulled him down and out of the plow. Elves were sturdy and there was plenty of snow for him to land on.
When he was down, she pulled him onto her shoulders in a fireman’s carry and got him into her cabin. Penny eased him onto her bed and stripped him before wrapping him in clean, dry blankets. Her fireplace cooperated, and soon, a crackling blaze was cheerily flaring and heating the room.
Penny had noted the chill in his skin, and there was only one thing for it. She stripped, pried his cocoon away and crept under the blankets with him to use some of her body heat to wake him.
His skin was icy cold, and she wrapped her leg over him, rubbing his back with her free arm.
She watched his face until her eyes crossed. She needed him awake before she took the next step.
When his eyes flickered open, it was enough. She kissed him, parting his lips and exhaling a teeny bit of her magic into his body.
He started to warm up immediately.
She broke off the kiss and looked him over. His snowflake was just below his collarbone, and it glittered in the light.
He was a workshop elf, in relatively good shape, and now that he was warming up, she needed to check for damage.
Penny sat up and ran her hands over him, working across each limb with concentration until she had reassured herself that nothing was broken.
His erection seemed to be working fine. At least he hadn’t frozen his cock.
She looked at his face, and his golden eyes were opened.
He licked his lips. “Why did you stop?”
She grinned. “Because you weren’t broken and your body now seems to be on the way to heating itself. I will just run your clothes through the washer and dryer, and you can be on your way.”
He sat up, and she got up, tossing the sheet over him to the waist. She gathered his clothing up and wandered out to her small laundry corner, shoving his clothing into the washer after she had gone through his pockets out of reflex.
A small, heavy object was inside his jeans’ pocket. She picked it up and recognized her collar.
Her company had shuffled out behind her, and he stared at the small object in her hand. “I can explain.”
“Start with your name, elf. It will speed things along.”
“Merkoss. I am one of the elves assigned to the naughty-or-nice list.” He inclined his head and bowed gracefully.
“You may call me Penny. My true name will be resumed soon enough.” She finished loading the washing machine and grabbed clothing from her pile of folded clothing. Sweater, long shorts and high socks all went on in moments.
“Well, Merkoss. What kind of soup do you want to help warm you up? I have quite a selection.”
“You aren’t angry that I was sent to seduce you into returning?”
She shuffled in her socks across the floor toward the kitchen. “You can try. I am just wondering why you left it so late.”
“What do you mean?”
She looked back at him.
“Today is the twenty-second; if I am to fly, I need to head home tomorrow at the latest.”
He looked shocked once again. “That is impossible. I set out weeks ago.”
“You do know that you were standing in the road with a casing of snowman around you. The bright scarf managed to catch my attention, and I missed hitting you with the plow.”
He winced. “It felt like something hit me.”
“Don’t be a wuss. It was only three hundred pounds of ice and snow travelling at fifty miles an hour.”
“You rescued me.”
She selected two cans of chicken noodle and started to open them. “I wouldn’t leave a human, and I didn’t leave you.”
He winced. “You rate elves lower than humans?”
“Elves can usually take care of themselves.”
“Wait, what do you mean today is the twenty-second? I left the workshop weeks ago.”
“It seems that the magic directed you into a snowman just now. It wasn’t there two days ago when I last cleared that route.”
Merkoss rubbed his head. “I am still a little cold.”
She sighed and went back to her bedroom, grabbing a quilt and draping it over his shoulders. “Have a seat and tuck in. It will be a few minutes before the soup is ready.”
Merkoss shuffled over to the armchair, and he tucked himself in. “This is very strange.”
“What? My house or that you were a snowman?”
“That you are not startled or afraid of my being here.”
“Why would I be afraid? All you could do was try to get me there a day earlier. I am already packed for tomorrow.”
“You were already coming back?”
“Of course. That was the plan all along. We just wanted freedom to work off our heat and live in the human world for a time. I have enjoyed it.” Penny smiled and added the water to the condensed soup and set it on the element while she made sandwiches and got crackers ready.
She set a kettle of water on, anticipating that Merkoss would need a little more heated liquid to get himself comfortable.
She settled on her couch and noted that she hadn’t lit the main fireplace. With a grunt, she got up and created flame with the competency that came with practice.
As the flames began to crackle, she pulled the screen over and returned to the couch.
“You do that easily.”
She chuckled. “It was always my job at the workshop. I mean, Vixen had her own skills with fire, but mine have been more direct.”
He looked forlorn, tucked into the quilt and sheet. “Thank you for saving me.”
“You are welcome, and you were lucky. If it hadn’t been me, you might not have survived.”
He licked his lips. “I tasted magic when I woke.”
“Reindeer don’t get cold, so I shared a bit of that with you. I will need to reclaim it before I go home, but you should be fine by then.”
“So, you are really going back, with or without me?” He scowled.
She chuckled. “It isn’t something to prick your ego. I would never let down the children of the world or Santa. The team needs all of us to fly, so we will all be there.”
Merkoss huddled in his blanket. “So, what was this exercise for?”
She got up when the kettle shrieked. “I am fairly sure that the elves sent to get us are a form of sacrifice from Santa, to us. You are mine to toy with, my friend.”
He looked startled at her levity. “You aren’t surprised that we were sent out?”
“I would have been more surprised if you hadn’t. Christmas reindeer can’t properly mate with humans and have them remember us. There is no forever home for us away from the workshop. Elves are really our only choice.” She shrugged and prepped a pot of tea. She leaned against the counter until the tea was done, sweetened two cups and brought them to her unexpected guest.
His hand appeared from the cocoon and accepted the mug with the reindeer on it.
She wandered back to her seat on the couch and listened to the pitch of the soup as it heated.
The tea’s scent was bright with citrus and cinnamon. She inhaled deeply and sipped.
The soup started to bubble, so she put her tea down and went to stir it. With a smile, she got a huge mug down, put some crackers in a small dish and put a serving of soup in the mug.
She heard a splashing of liquid on the wood floor and turned to him. “Damn.”
Penny pushed his blanket aside and lifted his head. He was shivering and out cold. She grimaced, climbed into his lap, and kissed him again, breathing heat into him from her unending supply.