A/N: Hey, guys! Well, the holidays are upon us, and I wanted to write something Christmas related. At first, I was just going to do a cute little one-shot, but then the idea for this story came to mind, and I had to roll with it. And while I know this concept has been used before, I've never seen it used in the world of Scrubs, so I hope to bring something new to the idea. However, when the idea first came to me, it was already the 1st of December, so I had to write this story much faster than I am used to. I mention this because if you notice that these chapters aren't as long or as detailed as my other stories, I really do apologize, but I wanted to get this done on time so I could share with you guys.
Anyway, it's the 14th of December, meaning there are only 12 days left until Christmas. So I'll be posting a chapter every day – the last one on Christmas day itself.
So here we go; My Christmas present to all of you lovely readers and reviewers who have supported me and really helped lift my spirits this year: I hope you enjoy!
"On the first day of Christmas,
My true love sent to me,
A Partridge in a Pear Tree."
JD strolled down the halls of Sacred Heart, a smile plastered to his face. There was only twelve days left until Christmas – less than two weeks! – he thought excitedly, and he couldn't have felt happier.
True, Christmas had never been his favorite holiday, but that was only because of his family who he'd been forced to mingle with year after year after year. Dan, despite their differences, wasn't so bad to hang out with around the holidays, especially when it was just the two of them. But his mom, with whatever new boyfriend she had that year, was a big old can of crazy. She'd worry so much over every little detail being just right, fretting over whether or not her new love interest would be impressed, and then on the actual day of Christmas, she'd end up getting plastered anyway, so all her preparing went to waste.
But this year he wasn't being coerced into returning to Ohio to visit his family. His mom had called just last night to say that her and her new squeeze were going on a cruise to the Bahamas for the holidays, while Dan had called to say he was renting a cabin in the woods for him and his new girlfriend. (To which JD promptly congratulated him on getting a girl that actually, for once, seemed like a keeper)
So now, he was free to stay in California; to spend Christmas with the people he considered his family at heart.
As if on cue, his best friend bolted from around the corner, bouncing up to him with an eager smile on his face. JD smiled. If there was one time of the year where Turk actually acted more excited and childish than he did, it was most definitely Christmas.
"So you're still helping me and Carla decorate the tree tonight, right Vanilla Bear?"
"Fo-shizzle my dizzle!"
"That's what I'm talking about!"
Doctor and surgeon fist bumped, excitement dancing in their features as they continued to discuss their plans for the holidays. Just as Turk was getting ready to ask what it was JD wanted this year, a familiar voice cut in to the lively discussion.
"Ginger! Did you not receive my page?"
JD startled at his mentor's voice. He'd been paged? The brunet quickly looked down at his pager, and sure enough, a message from Dr. Cox asking him to come to room 224 was scrawled across the screen. JD swallowed nervously. "I, um…I guess I need to change the battery."
Perry scowled. "Ya' think? Now listen here, Holly, and listen well. I know you and your black wife there are looking forward to that opportune moment where you both just happen to walk under that mistletoe at the same exact time, but this is a hospital, and while the world outside is running around like reindeers on acid trying to get thee most perfect gift for their oh-so-special-someone, do not forget that we work in an environment where this so called 'Magical time of year' does not apply. We are doctors in a building full of sick people, and it is our job to keep them among the living, so save your prancing and that obnoxious holiday cheer for when you're out of this hospital, because while you're here, you work. Understand?"
JD nodded quietly while Turk just glared. Dr. Cox stormed off in the opposite direction, leaving the two standing alone in the hallway.
"What a jerk," the surgeon mumbled. "Seriously, if someone told me Cox was capable of becoming even more of an ass, I'd say, 'No way, dude. No way.' But then Christmas comes around and whaddya' know? He's there to ruin the mood."
JD just continued to stare at his feet, not quite knowing what to say. Yeah, his mentor was definitely grumpier this time of year, but he didn't want to go that far. He knew it was hard to remain in the holiday spirit when people around you were dying. Even Turk had his moment during their first year there, but like JD, he was good at bouncing back and falling into the spirit of the holiday. Dr. Cox, however, was not. Sure, he continued to do his job just as well as he always had, but there was definitely a stronger air of bitterness than there normally was, and while JD didn't enjoy being ranted at more than usual, it'd be a lie to say he didn't understand where the older man's anger was coming from.
"JD, you in there?"
The young doctor startled. "What?"
"I was just saying we should invite Elliot for tree decorating tonight."
"Oh…I mean, oh! Yeah, okay. That sounds good."
Turk nodded as he began making his way for the nurses' station, probably to ask his wife if he'd seen their quick-talking friend. JD shook his head, removing all thoughts of his mentor to focus on what was going to be an awesome night. It'd been a while since all four of them had, had the chance to hang out, and in since all of them were able to stick around for the holidays, JD was now more than just looking forward to Christmas. It was going to be a blast.
"How The Grinch Stole Christmas," was playing in the background as Carla went about opening their various boxes of ornaments. Elliot was sitting comfortably on the couch, stringing popcorn, while JD and Turk – who were supposed to be picking out different colored candy canes to hang on the tree – took to nibbling at them instead.
"Could you two actually help instead of lying around and eating? This is supposed to be a group effort…"
"Aw, c'mon baby! This is only a once-a-year candy, so we have to try and enjoy it."
All three of them turned to Elliot on the couch, who had just pricked her finger with a needle…again. "Stupid needle and thread... Who thought of hanging popcorn on Christmas trees anyway?"
JD just shrugged as he handed his friend yet another band aid. "Do you want me to take over, Elliot? Or maybe Turk?"
The blonde haired girl smiled gratefully. "Nah, it's okay, JD. Thank you though."
The brunet smiled softly in return, getting up to make his friends cups of hot chocolate.
"Don't forget, buddy – I need the sugar free coco."
JD nodded, reaching for the various ingredients. "Whip cream in Carla's and marshmallows in Elliot's, right?"
"You got it," the Latina nurse answered, placing a silver ornament on an outstretched branch.
The Christmas special went about playing as a comfortable silence seemed to settle over the apartment. JD, who was still in the kitchen making hot chocolate, tried not to jump when Elliot suddenly began speaking.
"You know what I'm going to miss this year?"
"What?" Carla asked curiously.
"Having a boyfriend. I've been trying to stay single for a while, you know? To get a better idea of what I want romantically, but God…the holidays are here and it'd be nice to have a 'special someone.'"
Maybe it was just JD's mind playing tricks on him, but did Elliot glance at him while saying that?
"Can't say I feel ya', Elliot, because I have my baby this year and every year to follow."
Carla was practically glowing as Turk stood from where he'd been seated to wrap his arms around her middle, pulling her away from the tree and kissing her softly.
Elliot rolled her eyes, though the gesture held an air of playfulness. "Well, whatever. I'd much rather be boyfriend-less and spend my Christmas here, than have a boyfriend and be forced to spend Christmas back home."
JD raised his own mug of hot chocolate from the kitchen, eagerly saluting her words. "Here, here!"
Before he could rejoin his friends in the living room, however, a sudden knock drew all of their attention to the door.
"Oh! Let me get it!" Turk shouted excitedly, half running to the entrance. He quieted his voice upon getting closer to his best friend. "I ordered something special for Carla this year, and I don't want her to know till Christmas day."
"You go, playa!"
Turk winked before turning back to the door. When he opened it though, he frowned, and JD couldn't help but wonder why. "What's the matter SCB?"
"This is too big to be what I, um…what I thought it'd be."
"What did you think it was?" Carla asked curiously from the living room.
"Nothing, baby!" Turk answered hurriedly, picking up the large package and setting it on the kitchen counter.
From the couch, Elliot's eyes seemed to bulge. "Woah! That's a big package. Whose it for?"
Turk looked at the receiver's name and grinned. "Looks like my buddy's got an early Christmas gift this year!"
JD, who had made his way back in front of the TV by this point, turned to his friend in surprise. "It's for me?"
"Yeah, man! Come open it! I want to see what it is!"
JD was confused, but got up from his spot on the sofa nonetheless. Who would send him a Christmas present, and why so early? Yeah, there was his family, but the package was huge, and there was no way anyone back home had the money to afford whatever lay inside. And even if they could afford it, the question about its early arrival was still a mystery. Why not just wait till it was closer to Christmas?
JD took the scissors his best friend offered him to cut through the package, curious to see who it was from more than what was actually inside. He had expected his questions to be answered upon opening it, but instead, he ended up feeling even more confused.
Inside the package sat a fruit basket. Nothing particularly special at first glance, but this fruit basket was unlike others in that there wasn't a variety of fruit to choose from. The basket was full, yes, but only with pears. Really good looking pears, but just…pears.
The girls had come to join them in the kitchen by now, and were looking on at JD's new gift with what seemed to be genuine curiosity as well. "Pears…?" Elliot finally asked, neck stretched to look over the blue eyed doctor's shoulder.
"Pears," JD repeated, still looking at the basked in bewilderment.
"That's really weird, dude," Turk intervened, looking just as puzzled as the rest of them.
"Who does it say it's from, Bambi? Maybe that'll help explain the actual gift."
JD went to look for some sort of card, a tag even, that would answer both his question and Carla's, but there was none to be found. "I can't find anything here!"
"Aw, Bambi! Don't you see? You have a secret admirer!"
"That's my dawg!"
"Wait a second, guys. That…that can't be it, can it? I mean, don't admirers usually send like…flowers or chocolates or something?"
Elliot shook her head as she took another sip of her chocolate, still staring at the fruit basket placed before them. "Usually, but that's such a cliché, don't you think? Maybe whoever your admirer is, is trying to be creative."
Elliot shrugged. "Who knows?"
As the three went back to doing what it was they'd been doing, JD continued to stare at his more than odd present. Could it really be a secret admirer? A basket of pears wasn't that expensive, so maybe it was one of his family members. Maybe Dan was playing a prank on him? He had no idea, but hey…food was food, right?
Still, as JD began putting the fruit into the refrigerator, his mind would not let the subject go. What if it really was a secret admirer? Who could it be? Why pears? And why now?
"You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch," started playing from the television, reminding JD that he was currently in the middle of celebrating with his friends by decorating their tree together. He'd have to think more on his questions later. For now though, he was going to have some fun.
A/N: I hope the first chapter managed to catch your interest. ;) I'll be updating again tomorrow, so until then!