The newest Ava Rome story
Read it in The Shamus Sampler II, edited by Jochem Vandersteen and available on Kindle.
“IFHC” finds Ava, on Christmas day, temping as a bartender in a Waikiki bar. Ava doesn’t celebrate Christmas because too many of the people who have left her, have done so on Christmas. Still, she feels badly for those who have to work on Christmas, the waiters and bartenders, in particular, so she offers to take their places on that one day.
On this particular Christmas, however, she comes to regret that decision when two men in Santa suits come into the bar brandishing guns and proceed to rob the patrons. Ava tries to keep everybody calm in order to avoid bloodshed, but unfortunately, for her and the others, bloodshed is unavoidable.
“IFHC” stands for “I f***ing hate Christmas.” This is not your typical visions-of-sugar-plums-dancing-in-their-heads story. There are bad words and violent acts.
The Shamus Sampler II opens with a must-read essay by Tim Hallinan. It’s followed by other stories that will blow your hat off.