Ayla Ruse -        Ensnare yourself in love
New Release from
Changeling Press

(Christmas Magic)

Genre/Themes: Paranormal Romance,
Christmas, Elves and Magical Creatures, Erotic Romance

Novella length

Changeling Press

If Roxy loses her magic, will she also lose her chance at love?

Magic is everything to an Elf at the North Pole, and Roxy is no exception. Her magic is the ability to make any house a home, and any meal perfection.

When her magic begins to fizzle, Roxy goes to her hotel-owning cousin in an attempt to learn how to cook and clean using her own two hands, but her plan is a disaster. To make matters worse, Balthor, the boyfriend who loves to brag about her abilities, is staying at the hotel. She fears if he discovers she's lost her magic, he'll drop her faster than one of Santa's reindeer.

Balthor would do anything for his make-a-home-perfect Roxy. He knows Roxy's been shying away from him, but he believes she's anxious about their future. Determined to prove how much she means to him, he proposes -- and his plan is a disaster.


"Remember when you make the beds, Roxy, you need to tuck the ends of the sheets over like I've shown you instead of just throwing them over the top. Also, Room 304 requested extra towels -- the large bath ones, not just the small washcloths. Got it?"

Roxy sighed. "Yes, Helka. I do. I hope. I'm sorry to be causing you so much hassle, and at this time of year too. I know your hotel stays extra busy during the Reindeer Games, but I can't thank you enough for taking me in and helping me learn all these housekeeping things."

Helka placed a warm hand on Roxy's shoulder. "It'll be okay, sweetie. Every Elf goes through periods where their magic doesn't always work like it should. I think yours got a little strangled due to your nerves. Once you realize your boyfriend loves you for yourself, your magic will return."

"Yeah," Roxy agreed half-heartedly, inside feeling certain this was not the case. "But I'll feel better, I think, knowing that I know how to keep a place cozy and clean with my own two hands instead of with magic."

Helka leaned in and gave Roxy a quick hug, as if she knew Roxy were lying, before sending her on her way.

Roxy hurried up the back stairwell to the third floor, her assigned floor for the week, and slipped her cleaning cart from the housekeeping closet. She pulled out the clipboard and scanned her to-do list before beginning her rounds. She'd already been here one week, and to say she'd made progress would be reaching.

Knocking on the door to Room 300 and announcing "Housekeeping," before entering, she mused that maybe this time of year had been a poor choice to have Helka teach her how to be an effective housekeeper. This and next week were the annual Reindeer Games, and all hotels in the area were packed to capacity. She'd been working her butt off, and not doing a very good job of it either, but she'd keep trying until she could do with her own two hands what she used to do so effortlessly with her magic.

She stripped the beds and replaced the sheets, remembering at the last minute to tuck the ends in as Helka had taught her. She'd just moved to the bathroom to tackle the various cleansers and wipes and other implements she barely understood when the door to the room flew open. A burly little Workshop Elf in a three-piece suit stormed in, his oversized phone pressed to his pointy ear.

"I don't care who wins this year, we need to be prepared. If Nathon wins, we'll deck everything out in blue, and if Balthor wins, it'll be green. Have both sets ready. No, he's not confirmed yet, but I've seen him, and the only reason he'd be here is to race. I want to be ready. Got it? Good."
Roxy stood frozen at hearing her boyfriend's name come from this little Elf's lips.

"Balthor?" she murmured, her hands stuck in long rubber gloves, her fingers clutching cleansers and sponges.

"Oh, I didn't realize it was maid time. Sorry, babe, can you come back later? I have to take my power nap. The Games start soon, and I need my rest before I head out."

Roxy was taller than the male, but he still effectively hustled her to the door. She went, too dazed at knowing Balthor was somewhere here instead of down in Southern Town.

In the distance she heard the elevator doors bing open while the occupant of the room rattled off more instructions at her. Something about towels and sheets, but she wasn't paying attention at that point. From the corner of her eye she saw the two tall Border Elves stepping off the elevator, and her boyfriend was one of them!

She ducked her head and focused on the workshop Elf, yes-sir-ing him as he complained. Then disaster struck.


She knew she couldn't pretend not to hear. She snapped her head up and turned with a huge smile. "Balthor! I didn't think you were coming."

"It was a last-minute decision since you said... um... T'menen?" He turned to the other Border Elf with him. "I'll catch up to you later."

The other Elf nodded, smiled, and sauntered on. Meanwhile, Balthor gently snagged Roxy's arm and pulled her away from the open door. She barely had time to toss her cleaning supplies into the cart as they passed it.

"Wait," the Workshop Elf sputtered. "I was telling her what I expect when she comes back to clean."

"Don't worry about it," Balthor called back. "You room will be even better than you can imagine. You can count on Roxy here. I just need to borrow her because I have a problem with my sheets and I need to go over it with her."

"Your sheets?" Roxy worried aloud, but Balthor only grinned and led her down the hall to Room 312. "Is this your room?"

"For the last two days. I'm surprised we haven't run into each other already. Man, Roxy, I've missed you."

"I've missed you too, Balthor."

He opened the door, pulled her into the room, and tossed her onto the bed, following her closely.

"You said you had an issue with your sheets?" she asked, wondering if he'd noticed how sloppy his housekeeping had been. Or rather, how sloppily she'd performed her housekeeping duties.

"Yeah. You're not in them," he murmured before setting his warm lips over hers.

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