On the Ice: Mitch vs. Alex was written for the 2022 Rainbow Advent Calendar. The Rainbow Advent Calendar features daily (and sometimes twice-daily!) LGBTQ+ holiday-themed stories from some great LGBTQ+ authors from December 1-24! You can access the stories via the website of our fearless leader, Alex Jane.

Read On the Ice: Mitch vs. Alex below or download it to your device to read later. The story is short, only 1,900 words, so it’s perfect for your lunch break or morning commute!

On the Ice: Mitch vs. Alex (Stick Side #1.6) features Mitch and Alex, the main characters from the first book in my Stick Side series, On the Ice. If you haven’t read On the Ice yet, not to worry—there aren’t any significant spoilers in this short story… Except maybe for the fact that they lived happily ever after!

If you enjoy my story below, I hope you’ll consider reading On the Ice to find out more about how Mitch and Alex got together.

On the Ice: Mitch vs. Alex by Amy Aislin

TIMING: This short story takes place between the final chapter and the epilogue of On the Ice.

Once upon a time, in the land of wishes and dreams, when Mitch Greyson was nothing but a developing college hockey player hoping to one day play in the big leagues, he’d wished that he’d one day get the chance to play either with or against Alex Dean.

His husband.

Who hadn’t been his husband at the time.

They’d been friends, though, after some fluke of fate had sent Alex to Mitch’s college to speak as part of a kinesiology lecture series. It wasn’t until Alex—already an NHL player—had asked Mitch for skating tips that Mitch had learned during his figure skating lessons years earlier, that Mitch had begun desperately wanting to wield a hockey stick during a game at the same time as Alex.

He’d also wanted something else rather desperately, and that something was named Alex Dean.

He’d gotten what he’d wanted in the end—Alex and the game time with his husband.

In college, he hadn’t much cared if he eventually played with or against Alex, but that had changed quickly when Mitch had been drafted by Boston.

Because Alex had been playing for Toronto, and being on two different teams meant a long-distance relationship for the foreseeable future. At least they’d been on the same coast, though, which, sadly, was no longer the case with Mitch in LA and Alex in Toronto, but they made it work.

As luck would have it, their teams were playing each other in Toronto three days before Christmas. And as it was the last game for both of them until the 27th, Mitch got to be with Alex until Boxing Day to celebrate the holidays with his favorite person.

How fucking lucky was he? He got Alex and hockey and Christmas all in one go. Score one for wishes and dreams.

Of course, though everyone in Hockeylandia knew they were friends, very few people knew about them as a couple, so they had to keep their interactions strictly platonic in public spaces. Didn’t stop Mitch from grinning his ass off as both teams took the ice for the pre-game skate. Alex grinned back, six feet four inches of tall, jacked, and sexy, and Mitch’s stomach swooped with love and excitement. Alex looked even bigger on skates, which just made Mitch want him more.

Mitch had landed in Toronto with his team yesterday afternoon, and he’d spent the night at his and Alex’s home in Toronto’s Annex neighborhood instead of at the hotel with everyone else. It had been the first time in weeks they’d seen each other, and fuck Mitch had missed sleeping wrapped in Alex’s arms.

Last night, Mitch had promised Alex that he’d get by him tonight and score on his goalie.

“You can try,” Alex had rumbled, voice all sexy and deep and making Mitch shiver. “But you haven’t managed it yet.”

“True,” Mitch had responded, grabbing two fistfuls of Alex’s T-shirt and yanking until Alex fell on top of him on the bed. “But there’s a first time for everything.”

“I hate to tell you.” Alex had kissed him, hard and fast. “But tomorrow’s not gonna be that day.”

And it wasn’t, goddamnit. By the middle of the third period, Mitch had scored one goal—while Alex had been on the bench. He wanted to score on his husband, but Alex had blocked every one of his shots.

Didn’t help that they were both über competitive, especially against each other. Didn’t help that Alex knew everything about him, including how he played. But Mitch knew how Alex played too, and it was frustrating as hell that he couldn’t score on him—had never been able to score on him—even knowing that.

Alex wasn’t a high-value defenseman for nothing.

Mitch was growly and sweaty and frustrated when the game ended with a win for Toronto. Alex, the bastard, smiled and waved at him as both teams filed off the ice.

That smile turned Mitch’s mood around and he huffed a small laugh.

Leave it to Alex to do nothing but smile at him for Mitch to feel better. Three and half years they’d been married, and Alex’s smile could still light up the darkest of days.

With the game over, Mitch headed into the locker room to shower and change so he could head home with his husband.

* * *

Dressed down in sweatpants and a loose T-shirt half an hour after arriving home from the game, Alex leaned back against the dresser in their bedroom and poked at his phone, confirming lunch with his mom for tomorrow. On his right, the door to the en suite burst open and Mitch stuck his curly-haired head out. “Where’s the good stuff?”


“The good TP. The cashmere stuff that’s soft and cushy against my ass.”

Swallowing a laugh, Alex said, “Maybe I forgot to buy it.”

“Please.” Mitch scoffed and swung out of the bathroom, poking Alex in the stomach as he walked by. “You say that like I don’t know you.”

He disappeared down the hallway. Alex could hear him rummaging through the hall closet. A loud “Ha!” and then he was back, a package of toilet paper under one arm. “Knew it had to be somewhere.” He kissed Alex on the cheek on the way back into the bathroom. “Thank you.” The door closed behind him.

“You’re welcome, you toilet paper snob,” Alex muttered.

“I heard that!”

Grinning, Alex went downstairs and poured himself a glass of water from the kitchen sink. In the living room, the lights on the tree twinkled. There were already a few gifts underneath it, things he’d purchased for friends and family that he’d had wrapped at the mall.

Because the money went to charity, not because he was lazy.

He almost hadn’t decorated for Christmas at all this year, wanting instead to wait for Mitch so they could do it together. But as both Mitch and his mom had argued, what was the point of decorating so close to Christmas when it would have to come down again so soon? So he’d done it last month when his friend and old teammate—Roman Kinsey, who currently played for Vermont’s NHL team—had been in the city for a game. Alex wasn’t above putting friends to use.

They’d put up the tree and strung the garland along the staircase banister and hung the stockings and set up the Christmas village that his mom had given him on the mantelpiece.

But it hadn’t truly felt like Christmas until Mitch had arrived yesterday.

When it was just Alex bumbling around their townhouse, the house was too quiet and too lonely. Mitch had been home one day and already the place felt more lived-in. Mitch’s shoes were by the front door, and his winter coat hung off the back of a dining room chair because he couldn’t be bothered to put it in the closet. A hoodie was draped over the arm of the living room couch, and the peanut butter Alex hardly ever used sat on the counter next to the blender, ready to go for Mitch’s morning smoothie.

It had been tradition, as of a few years ago, to spend Christmas with their friends. They either congregated here, in Vermont at Roman and Cody’s place—the latter of whom was Mitch’s best friend—or in Florida at Ash and Dan’s, Alex’s former teammate and Mitch’s brother, respectively. But with four out of the six of them on four different NHL teams, that hadn’t been possible this year with their schedules. But they had plans to get together during the NHL bye week in January, so all was not lost.

And though Alex missed his friends, he’d never complain about having Mitch all to himself. Plus, Alex’s mom was spending the holidays here this year instead of visiting family in Quebec. So they’d have Christmas Eve dinner and Christmas brunch, as had been tradition with him and his mom for as long as he could remember and that he and Mitch and adopted. And honestly? There was nothing else Alex wanted more than to spend time with his little family.

Footsteps sounded on the stairs. That was another thing Alex had missed—the noises of another person living in the house. It became normal when Mitch moved back for the summer months during the off-season, but as soon as he left again it became almost tomb-like.

“Did your butt thank you for your choice in TP?”

Laughing, Mitch walked right into his arms and snuggled in. Before Alex had a chance to set aside his water glass, Mitch was pulling away with a scowl. He planted both hands on his hips, looking like a pissed off, curly-haired, demon child. “You couldn’t let me score just one goddamn goal?”

Alex patted his head, very there, there. “Better luck next time.”

“Argh.” Mitch threw both hands up. “Fine. In that case, no blow job for you tonight.”

Alex grinned at his husband. He was cute when he got all annoyed over hockey. And the no-blowjob thing wasn’t even that big of a deal for Alex—he was demisexual. His relationship with Mitch had always been about more than sex. And though he was sexually attracted to Mitch, he was also perfectly happy making dinner together or running errands or doing yard work or other every day mundane things.

Mitch huffed. “You should’ve been a goalie.”

“You’re not the first person to tell me that.”

“Really? Huh.” Stealing the glass from Alex’s hand, Mitch downed half of it, set it aside, and snuggled in again.

This? Right here? Having Mitch in his arms? It was even better than winning hockey games.

He kissed the top of Mitch’s head. “I was thinking… Want to go skating at Nathan Phillips Square tomorrow?”

Mitch kissed his chin, his lips warm and soft. “Recreate our first date?”

“Minus the CN Tower. Unless you’ve suddenly gotten over your fear of heights?”

“Nope. Feet on the ground, thank you.” Mitch kissed him again, on the lips this time, and it was soft and sweet. “Skating sounds perfect.”

“I hear they have a Christmas market set up there now too, if you need any last-minute gifts.”

One of Mitch’s hands slipped under Alex’s T-shirt, and he ran his nails up Alex’s back. “I might see if I can find something for Dan.”

Alex grunted, his body erupting in goosebumps.

That thing he’d been saying before, about sex? Still true. But now that Mitch’s hands were on him, he really wanted that blow job.

Mitch’s other hand found its way down his pants.

“What happened to your no blowjob rule?”

A cheeky grin from Mitch that lit Alex up from the inside out. “A boy’s allowed to change his mind, right?” Then their lips were crashing together while the lights on the tree continued to twinkle, and with everything Alex wanted or needed right here for the taking, he let himself fall a little bit more in love with his husband.

They went upstairs, touching and laughing and kissing the whole way, and it was a merry Christmas for all, and a very good night.

Copyright 2022 Amy Aislin as part of the Rainbow Advent Calendar 2022. All rights reserved. This is a work of fiction. All names, characters, places, and incidents are products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, organizations, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.


If you enjoyed this short story, I hope you’ll consider reading Mitch and Alex’s origin story in On the Ice (Stick Side #1).

Or pick up the rest of the Stick Side series:

The Nature of the Game (Ash and Dan)
Shots on Goal (Cody and Roman)
Risking the Shot
Two-Man Team
Star of the Game

Or, if you’re in the mood for more short and sweet stories set in the Stick Side world, check out my other free reads here.