Author's note: Work caught up with me this month - apologies for the period of quiet. I'll be getting back into 'Thaw' and 'Vacation' in the new year. Sorry that this isn't a new chapter just yet.

In the meantime, my wife cajoled me to try writing a brief Christmas-themed Castle story. It should be quite a bit less angsty than Thaw, because I think we all need something a bit more upbeat during the holidays.

If you'd like to follow along, it's called 'The Closing of the Year'.