By Claire Hastings, from Sheila Connolly's romantic suspense, Once She Knew
I like the Christmas season. I teach at Sophia College in western Massachusetts, and December always brings the mass exodus of students, which is great. Not that I don't love them all—they're smart and they ask a lot of challenging questions, and they usually even do the work I ask for, more or less on time. But that means it takes a lot of energy on my part to keep ahead of them, so when they leave for winter break, I can relax, just for a while.