A/N: I'm not sure what this is, but it popped into my head and had to be written. It'll be a short one- 2-4 chapters. Hope you enjoy! Reviews are lovely and welcome!
Lucy had quietly excused herself from the festivities more than half an hour ago, the revelry and partying proving to be a bit too much too soon. Her legs dangled high above the warehouse floor from her perch atop the catwalk. The Lifeboat seemed so small from that high up.
The music from the downstairs conference room drifted up and echoed around her, allowing a peaceful, if melancholy, atmosphere. She wrapped an arm around the cool, metal post beside her as the next song's first notes began.
And her heart clenched.
It was difficult for Wyatt to maintain a silent approach when his boots were so loud on the metal walkway. He wasn't sure if she'd heard him, as she seemed very lost in thought. Or sad. Or, perhaps, a bit of both.
"I hate this song."
She said it so softly that he wasn't sure if it was directed at him or just a comment to herself. He eased down next to her, far enough that they weren't touching, but close in case either of them needed a physical reassurance of some sort.
"It has to be the saddest Christmas song ever."
He scrunched up his face. "Really?"
She slightly shrugged. "Maybe it's the tune. I don't know. It's just always felt sad to me, even if the words say otherwise." She paused and lightly scoffed. "Feels even sadder now after...time travel and..." She waved her hand around at the warehouse. "...all of this."
He listened as Sinatra's smooth, soft voice echoed around them.
Here we are as in olden days
Happy golden days of yore
Faithful friends who are dear to us
Gather near to us once more
He gave a slight shake of his head and crooked a smile. "It does seem kind of...ironic."
She leaned her head against the post. "Sometimes, I wish I didn't know the things I do."
He laughed softly and gave a tiny, "Yeah."
Through the years we all will be together
If the Fates allow
Hang a shining star upon the highest bough
His hand automatically reached for hers in her lap. She never looked up, but kept her gaze fixed and unfocused on an imaginary spot near the Lifeboat below them.
"Did you know those weren't the original lyrics?"
His fingers slowly intertwined with hers. It was meant to be a comforting gesture, maybe for them both, but he wasn't sure if the message was getting through.
"Most of them. The song was written before the end of World War I and had a very wartime feel to it. The original lyrics were even sadder and when the song was going to be used in the film Meet Me in St. Louis, Judy Garland protested and said she couldn't sing such a sad, depressing song to her character's heart-broken little sister."
"What were the original lyrics?"
She paused, deciding if she wanted to sing them or not. He gave her hand a gentle squeeze, which was just the courage she needed.
"Have yourself a merry little Christmas; It may be your last. Next year we may all be living in the past."
Wyatt raised his eyebrows and shook his head. "Wow."
Lucy nodded. "Yeah. The original last line isn't very uplifting either."
She gave a small smile and let her thumb graze the back of his hand.
"Someday soon, we all will be together, if the Fates allow. Until then, we'll have to muddle through somehow." She paused and glanced down at their hands before softly continuing. "You can still find the original Judy Garland version that contains that last line. She wanted to keep it because of what it meant to soldiers during the war."
Wyatt nodded. "I can understand that." He watched as her thumb gently drew tiny, random patterns across the back of his hand. She still hadn't looked up at him. He summoned all his courage and let the small chill wash away. He kept his eyes on her as he quietly sang, "So, have yourself...a merry little Christmas...now."
She turned and, keeping her head against the post, gave a lazy half-smile. "Still don't think it's the saddest song?"
He laughed lightly but sobered quickly. "No. There was always one that really got to me, especially when I was overseas."
He paused and swallowed a bit, unsure if he could actually get it out.
"I'll Be Home For Christmas. It was definitely the worst song to hear on base. Because we all knew it was true. When you're in the middle of a desert, three thousand miles from home, with the enemy at your doorstep..." He shook his head, a vain attempt to knock the memories back into their proper hiding place.
Lucy nodded a bit sympathetically. "If only in my dreams."
He took a deep breath. "Exactly. Which is what it was most of the time. I...missed out on so much. And to hear that stupid, depressing song just made it all worse." He hesitated. "And after Jess, that song was just..."
"The saddest song."
He grimaced and nodded. "Yep."
They sat there quietly, allowing the last few moments to sink in. Sinatra finished his song downstairs and a newer, more upbeat Christmas tune floated to their perch near the rafters. Their thumbs took turns lazily grazing on each other's hands.
"Do you want to get out of here? I'm not really in the mood to socialize and party, but I could definitely go for some pie right about now."
He grinned and gently nudged her. "You don't exactly seem like the baking type."
"Ha! I'm not. But there's a great little diner not far from here that has the best lemon pie."
He stood and, still holding her hand, pulled her to her feet. "Well then. Who am I to say no to the best lemon pie?"
She threw her arms around his neck and pulled him closer, whispering in his ear.
"Thank you, Wyatt."
He furrowed his brow.
"For...everything." She pulled away slightly, keeping him at arm's length. She shook her head and looked at him with such awe and wonder. "You could be downstairs partying it up with Rufus and Jiya and...everyone. Or you could've gone somewhere else, a bar, or home or...anywhere. But instead..." She paused and took a slightly deeper breath than she realized she needed. "...you're here." She wanted to add with me, but she couldn't. Not yet.
He grinned and shrugged. "No place I'd rather be."