Author Note: There were many awesome songs referenced in JINGLE MY WAY, but this one is hands down my favorite. I had so much fun writing this scene , I think I played this song about a thousand times in the process.
Once they were out of decorations, Nina and Jack followed a few of the downtown carolers as they stopped to perform at all of the local shops. They were so festive in their ugly holiday sweaters and reindeer antlers. Nina loved the three little boys singing off-key and turning every song into a boy band performance.
Jack had been clicking away on his phone still searching for her favorite Christmas song. He was down to his last ten minutes.
“You should just give up. You’re never going to guess.”
“Jackson Spears is no quitter,” He hadn’t even noticed he was headed straight for the Salvation Army Santa ringing his bell on the corner.
“Ho, ho, whoa there, Jack,” Santa said.
Jack looked up just short of colliding with the donation bucket. “Hey Bill, you’re just the guy I was looking for.”
“What can I do for you?”
Jack whispered something in his ear. A second later Santa Bill peeked around his arm and waved at Nina.
“I think I could manage that,” Santa Bill said.
“Thanks.” Jack deposited a couple of twenties into the donation bucket, and Santa Bill rang his bell.
“Merry Christmas,” Nina said, pulling some cash out of her pocket. After she placed her donation in the bucket, Jack grabbed her hand with a smug grin.
“What was that about?” she asked.
“You’ll see soon enough.”
They rounded a corner and stopped at a large gazebo, which looked to be closed for the night.
“Aw man, looks like we’re too late. They only turn it on for a couple of hours a night, but when it’s all lit up, this place is packed.” Just then the lights on the gazebo turned on and lit up the entire square. Nina’s eyes widened to take it all in. There were thousands of twinkling white lights covering every inch of it and the largest mistletoe she’d ever seen hanging in the center.
Her favorite song, That’s What I Want for Christmas by Nancy Wilson blaring out of the gazebo speakers rendered her speechless.
“I told you, I never quit.”
She looked up at him in shock. “How…”
“Angie’s a lot nicer in text messages than she is in person.”
Nina smiled until her cheeks hurt. She couldn’t even be upset that he technically cheated. She just kept staring at him. He wasn’t even acting smug about it.
“Shall we?” Jack pulled her toward the gazebo.
“Wait, hold on.” Nina jerked her hand free. “I can’t.”
“Sure, you can.” He reached for zipper of her coat, but Nina stepped back.
“No, I mean, I can’t dance. I don’t know how.”
“Are you serious?”
It was embarrassing, but true. Nina had never danced with a man. Even on her wedding day, Michael said there was no need for a first dance when there was no one but the two of them to witness it. She didn’t want to go down the list of memories and experiences she felt cheated out of because of her husband.
“Then let me teach you.” Jack winked.
“I don’t know.” What if she was a horrible dance partner? She didn’t want Jack to witness that. Her little crush was quickly morphing into something more. She should not have been having this much fun.
Jack approached her. “In that case, I’m amending my prize. Now you owe me a dance.”
“You can’t do that.” Nina smiled as he unzipped her jacket and the sides of her pants.
“Who’s gonna stop me?”
Nina sure as hell wasn’t.
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