“So,” I say to the members of the Chocolate Lovers’ Club. “These are our not-very-long-out-of-the-oven, state-of-the-art mince pie and brownie combos. Let me know what you think.”
I put the plate down with a flourish and they fall on them like vultures. Nice vultures, obvs. It looks like the festive experiments are a big hit.
The Chocolate Lovers’ Club is back this Christmas!
Lucy has taken over Chocolate Heaven and it is her little heaven: managing a chocolate shop, having her friends come in, and of course, the mandatory tastings – it is quality control! It also means she doesn’t have much time for Aiden… Marcus is history after he walked out on Lucy at the wedding and Aiden is perfect, but between his busy schedule and her trying to manage the shop alone, it’s not easy to find time together.
Autumn and Addison should spend all their time planning their wedding, but since Richard’s death things don’t seem right. Autumn is still caught up in her brother’s death, she certainly won’t share her feelings with her parents, and Addison is no help. Good thing Autumn can focus on babysitting little Lewis while Nadia gets her life back on track. For Nadia, the image of her husband committing suicide won’t leave her alone, but she has to look forward, for Lewis’ sake at least. And with the girls’ help and Jacob, who is around whenever she needs him, it is easier.
Chantal has a husband to share parenting duties with, but she also has to share her husband with Stacey, the affair which got him a second family, little Elsie.
Except for Aiden, the men aren’t doing too well in this run up to Christmas!
“I have a stash of chick flicks and an ever bigger stash of Dairy Milk. Who needs love when you’ve got chocolate? That’s all I need for company these days.”
So while Nadia rekindles with her sister (which also means dealing with her sneaky, inappropriate brother-in-law) and gets back into the working world, Autumn fills in as day care for Lewis, takes him out (including to Chocolate heaven of course!), meets up with other parents (especially Miles and his little girl Florence) and feels almost like a surrogate mother, making her want to find out more about her own family…
Chantal has a whole different set of problems, having to try and make her marriage with Ted work when there is obviously something wrong and it doesn’t help when Ted asks her to help out Stacey, the woman who, along with her baby girl, seem to be responsible for most of the problems in their marriage.
For Lucy though it’s easy, the answer to all problems is chocolate! Chocolate is always the right choice – how else would the Chocolate Lovers’ Club survive Christmas this year?
What I’d like to know is, if carbon offsetting is supposed to work then why can’t we have calorie offsetting? I like the idea of me stuffing my face with chocolate and some skinny bitch on the other side of the world bloating up.
The Chocolate Lovers’ Christmas by Carole Matthews
First published October 2015