Depends on Who's Asking by Lani Lynn Vale


Saint & Caro

It was the night before Christmas, and all through the house, not a creature was stirring… nope. No. Nuh-uh. That’s a lie.

The moment that Caro wakes up, she knows that she’s not alone.

One thump-thump from the living room and she quickly moves into action.

One 911 call later, and she’s ready to defend herself.

Only, she gets more than she bargains for when she steps out into her living room and comes face to face with a living, breathing nightmare.

And isn’t it just fitting that the man that saves her by coming down the chimney with a large black gun in his hand is named Saint Nicholas?


It seemed like the start of a bad joke.

Saint Nicholas comes down the chimney on Christmas Eve night, but he isn’t there to bear gifts. He’s there to take out the trash.

When he lands on his silent feet, he has no other choice but to put himself in harm’s way.

One look at Caro’s terrified face, and he can’t stop himself.

He steps in just as the bullets start flying, saving the damsel in distress and taking a wound to the shoulder for his trouble.

But one thing he can say is, heroes always win the girl.

And Caro is the best Christmas miracle of all.


I may look innocent, but I screenshot a lot.



Seventeen years old

“Are you ready?”

I looked up at my mother who was bent down smiling at me.

I was ready.

I’d been ready for hours.

Yet, as the son of the President and First Lady of the United States, I was expected to do things that most other kids weren’t.

Like sit around for hours, doing nothing, on Christmas Eve.

I was also dressed like a pretentious asshole in layers and layers of fabric that itched. Yet again, I wasn’t allowed to complain.

Not and be ‘presentable.’

“Yes, ma’am,” I said, trying my hardest to sound pleasant and not the pissed off teen that I actually was.

At seventeen, I should’ve been at home, hanging with my friends, or spending time at a party with my family. Instead, I was at a fundraising dinner, or whatever, with my parents and about two hundred of Capitol Hill’s finest.

Or, at least I was told they’re Capitol Hill’s finest.

I didn’t like half of them. And the other half I was ambivalent about.

“Let’s go,” one of the two secret service agents that were sworn to protect only me ordered.

His name was Daniel, and he was an asshole.

But he was a protective asshole, so I guessed that worked in my favor.

The other secret service agent tasked to protect me, Phillipe, fell into step on my other side as my mother and her secret service agents fell into step beside her.

My father wasn’t far behind with his, but he got hung up by a senator that he was trying to win favor with and stopped. Again.

“Jesus Christ,” I said to nobody in particular. “Will this fucking night ever end?”

“Language,” my mother growled.

I looked over at her and narrowed my eyes.

“I’m fucking tired of this, Mother,” I ground out. “This is getting to the point where it’s ridiculous. I didn’t have to come with you tonight. I could’ve stayed at home, yet, alas, I was forced to because it would ‘look good for Daddy’s reelection.’”

My mother’s eyes narrowed. “Language, Saint.”

I narrowed my eyes back. “Don’t lecture me on my language. How about you tell me why we can’t spend a holiday on our own? Or, how about you tell me why, for the love of God, y’all just can’t leave me behind?”

My mother looked like she wanted to smack me upside the head.

She wouldn’t, because someone might very well see it and print it in the newspapers, but I could tell she wanted to.

We couldn’t do anything normal.

Every single move, every single shit we took, was scrutinized.

And it was getting really fucking old.

I’d spent four fucking years doing this, and I was tired.

Not to mention the two years before that my father spent campaigning.

Or the six years before that my father spent as the senator of Arkansas.

Politics had been my life for as long as I could remember. The only problem was, I didn’t want politics to be my life. I wanted to be a regular teenager.