A Surprise for Shelby

Posted: December 22, 2021 in Experiences, Thoughts
Tags: , , ,

It’s not often that I am surprised anymore. Not since the day I went to the grocery store for carrots, and ended up with a head injury that gave me the unexpected side-effect of being able to read minds. Now that you know that, I’m sure you can understand how I usually know what if someone is cooking up a surprise for me… and I have to act surprised, even when I’m not.

But today was a different story.

This morning, I headed to Thrasher Development to give Uncle Joey and Ramos the Christmas gifts I’d picked out for them. It’s not always an easy task to buy something for a mob boss and his hitman, but I’d thought long and hard about the gifts I wanted to give them, and now they were wrapped up and ready to go.

I’d called ahead so they’d know I was coming, and it was nice to find them both in Uncle Joey’s office when I arrived.

“Merry Christmas!” Uncle Joey said, as I came into his office. “Come on in.” I gave both of them a hug and sat down. We caught up for a few minutes, before I pulled their presents from my bag.

“Who wants to go first?” I asked.

“Me.” Uncle Joey took his gift and pulled the paper off his box. He lifted the lid and his face broke out into a pleased smile. “Wow. Would you look at that?” He pulled the pearl-handled knife from the box, and held it up to examine it. “This is great. Thanks Shelby. I don’t have one like this.” He balanced it on his index finger, thinking that it was well-made, and he couldn’t wait to throw it.

Relieved, I glanced at Ramos. “Your turn.”

Ramos was thinking that a knife like that would be pretty handy, and my heart sank, since that wasn’t what was in the box. He pulled off the paper and opened his box to find a glasses case. Prying the case open, he pulled out the dark glasses and grinned. “These are perfect. Thanks.”

“I knew you lost your favorite pair up in the mountains, so I hope you like them.”

“I do. These are great.” He slipped them on his face and sent me that sexy grin of his that always made my heart flutter. “How do they look?”

I swallowed and tried not to drool. “You look amazing… I mean the glasses… they look really good on you.”

His lips tilted up, and I caught his thought that he liked how flustered I got around him. Even my face had turned a little pink. It was adorable.

“Now it’s your turn,” Uncle Joey said, unable to contain his eagerness. “This year, Ramos and I decided to go in on a gift together. So it’s from both of us.” He glanced at Ramos, thinking that it was all Ramos’s idea, but they’d both decided it was more appropriate coming from both of them, since Chris might not like it coming from Ramos.

With my curiosity piqued, I glanced at the box Ramos held in his hands. It was a large rectangular shape, and I had no idea what could be in it. They’d both managed to block their minds and the only thing I picked up was a sense of excitement. Both of them could hardly wait to see my face when I opened the box.

“Merry Christmas, Shelby.” With solemnity and anticipation, Ramos handed the box to me. I glanced between him and Uncle Joey, totally in the dark about what was inside. I knew they wanted me to be surprised, and they had certainly accomplished that.

“You guys! What is it?”

“Uh, uh,” Ramos admonished. “None of that. Hurry and open it.”

I took a deep breath and pulled off the wrapping paper. The black, rectangular box looked like it could be holding jewelry, and a thrill of anticipation washed over me. Holding my breath, I pulled the lid off and gasped.

Inside, a beautiful necklace and earring set rested on a blue velvet cloth. But it wasn’t just any necklace or earrings. The stone was familiar, even though I hadn’t seen it for a while.

“Is this…. ?? Oh my gosh! It is!” The delicate golden chain held a teardrop-shaped piece of smooth, polished, white quartz with veins of gold running through it. The earrings were the same polished quartz, only a little smaller.

“I don’t know what to say… it’s beautiful. How did you do it?”

Uncle Joey smiled. “We know a guy who was more than happy to work with the raw material we provided.”

“We thought you might like something you could keep … without giving anything away.” Ramos added, thinking about our recent adventure into the mountains where he’d almost lost me.

“It’s perfect. Thank you both so much.”

“And if anyone asks,” Uncle Joey continued. “Tell them it’s to make up for not finding all the gold you were looking for… like a consolation prize.”

“That totally works.” I pulled the necklace from the box to put it on.

“Here… let me.” Ramos took it from my fingers and placed it around my neck. After he finished, I took the earrings out of the box, and put them in my ears.

“How do they look?”

“Beautiful,” Ramos said, looking into my eyes.

My eyes teared up, and I gave Uncle Joey a hug and kiss on the cheek. I turned to Ramos and he held me extra tight for a while longer, but I wasn’t about to complain. Then he planted a quick kiss on the side of my mouth before pulling away, and I wiped a tear from my cheek.

We all thanked each other for the gifts, and the warmth of the meaning behind them sent love and gratitude into my heart. After that, we said our goodbyes and I hurried home, grateful for such wonderful people in my life. Glancing at the stone, it caught the light, making the golden veins gleam.

What a sweet surprise. Now, every time I looked at it, I would be reminded of a time when I felt so much love from all my family and special friends who had come to my rescue. They’d saved my life. Because of that, I knew I would treasure this amazing gift forever and ever.

For all of you out there ~ May the gift of love be yours this season!

XOXO ~Shelby

  1. Loved this (as usual). Almost felt like I was receiving a gift. How perfect!


  2. It is like a wonderful gift for me. I want to go back and read that story again and snuggle up with my family (of furbabies) I read this one several times back to back. Merry Christmas and thank you


  3. Linda Vain says:

    thank you, that was beautiful and I shed a tear with Shelby. Can’t wait for her next book, I have read every one so far. love them all.


  4. Gina says:

    Love it ❤️❤️
    Merry Christmas


  5. Denise says:

    Love this chapter in the life of Shelby. Thank you

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Esther York says:

    Merry Christmas to You and Yours! and a Blessed 2022!; the story was a nice touch! Thks!


  7. Deedee Morua says:

    Loved it! I got so excited when I saw the email of a Shelby post.


  8. Susie says:

    Thank you for this lovely story! Like getting a little boost while waiting on the next Shelby Nichols adventure.


  9. Johan Koeslag says:

    A lovely little “gift” from one of my favourite authors! …had to share it on my FB page!


  10. Pam Christ says:

    Beautiful. I love all of these characters. They come to life with in the books. When is the next one coming out? LOL


  11. Gail Morris says:

    I love it! What a great surprise fro Shelby


  12. Bonnie Drummond says:

    I loved this stort story very much. It really shows what Christmas is about, not the giving of presents but about the love and warmth in being with family and friends.


  13. The original Geoff Parker says:

    Wow, Shelby, appropriate, wonderful gifts for Uncle Joey and Ramos! That’s awesome. But most awesome of all, THEY managed to surprise YOU! That doesn’t happen very often these days. I love the necklace and earrings they gave you. That is just too awesome! I could feel the love coming right off the page with this story! And isn’t that what it’s all about?
    From my family to you and yours, and your extended family at Thrasher, Merry Christmas and a joyous, wondrous and safe New Year.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Sandy Heaberlin says:

    Wonderful! Love the Shelby stories. It has got to be hard to keep Shelby from knowing how someone really feels about a gift or a surprise. Loved how they were able to block her. Merry Christmas!


  15. Bedebug says:

    If I were Shelby I would never take them off.


  16. Linda says:

    Merry Christmas Collleen and thank you for the gift of your story.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Really sweet story, thanks! Have a wonderful holiday!


  18. Kathy Crague says:

    Love the story. Love getting Shelby updates between books!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Dorothy Schaefer says:

    Another Great One I love reading these as much as the books wishing you and your family a very good holiday and a happy and healthy new year


  20. Mary says:

    Love the Shelby stories! Please keep writing them!


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