Castle Awesome 2015
Sarah snuck out of bed at little after 4AM years of CIA training had allowed her to set an internal alarm and wake up whenever she needed. The only complication of that had been Chuck. She always slept like a rock when she was sleeping with Chuck. Not exactly the best trait in a handler protecting an asset, but she didn't have to worry about that anymore. She had mostly normal usage of her shoulder, but she hadn't recovered sufficiently for the rigors of CIA field work. That was okay though, she enjoyed her job as a kickboxing instructor. The hours were flexible and she'd be recording her own workout tape in a few months. A fitness video producer had scouted her class one day and decided she had exactly the look he needed.
She felt a bit silly prancing around in front of the camera in spandex, but the money from the workout videos promised the financial independence she'd need to start a family. Mark the producer said that if she had a kid they could make a killing on postnatal workout videos. Sarah had remained skeptical about the possibility of having kids until they had returned to Los Angeles a few months ago and she'd begun playing with Ben and Tyler on a regular basis. Her body now literally ached to have Chuck's children. It was a very disturbing sensation. They wouldn't even be married until April.
Sarah crept out of the bedroom she was sharing with Chuck and stole down the steps much more silently than was probably really called for given the mission she was on. She reached the mantle in the living room of Castle Awesome to find that Santa had already visited her stocking. She shook her head at how ridiculously good Chuck had become at sneaking around. She'd barely left his side in the last eight weeks and yet both of them had managed to get their Christmas shopping done and at some point he'd left their bed without her knowing. She unzipped the black duffle bag and began filling Chuck's stocking. Ellie had apparently already taken care of the standard fair of toothpaste and other knickknacks. She rearranged the contents of Chuck's stocking and snorted when she found a copy of Women Explained for Uber Nerds. Devon was crazy if he thought Chuck could learn anything about her from a book.
She packed up the rest of Chuck's stocking and put it back on the mantle. Then she added a few trinkets to each of the kids heaping stockings. She slipped a bottle of Ellie's favorite perfume and some bubble bath into Ellie's stocking and then stuck a UCLA bobble-head just above Devon's. Her mission completed she crept back up to the guest room and slipped back into bed next to Chuck. His arm immediately came around her and pulled her closer and she sighed contentedly. She was lulled back to sleep by sounds of Chuck's soft breathing and his steady heartbeat against her back.
"Uncle Chuck, Aunt Sarah, its Christmas. ITS CHRISTMAS!!!" shouted a young voice, moments before a tiny missile landed on top of them. "Uncle Chuck, Aunt Sarah, wake up, it's Christmas!" it reiterated as it jostled them.
"Ben, come on, I told you'd they'd be up in a bit. If you want your stocking you better begin behaving," came Devon's voice after the missile. "Sorry guys. That is not awesome, Ben. They'll be down in a few, leave them alone."
Sarah sat up to find Ben's face looking pleadingly at her asking her to bail him out of trouble. She wanted to say it was okay, but she knew she shouldn't. "That's okay, buddy. We'll be down in a couple of minutes, okay?"
"Hurry, up, please?" Ben asked as he retreated from the room.
"Sorry, guys," Devon said again as he closed the door behind them. They heard him a moment later out in the hallway. "I don't care if Uncle Chuck said it was okay. I told you not too, and then you disobeyed me. Go to your room till we call you down for breakfast."
Sarah glanced over at Chuck. "So is that what it's going to be like when we have kids. I'm going to take the hard line and you're going to cave in all the time?"
"What? He's supposed to be excited. It's Christmas."
Sarah shook her head. "You're going to be trouble."
"Hey you're the trained CIA operative, if you can't control the kids, what chance do we have anyway?"
Sarah grinned. "I hate to think of the lengths I had to go to, just to get you to stay in the car."
"Hey!" Chuck stuck out his lip in a pout. Sarah whacked him with a pillow. Chuck snagged his pillow and hit her back.
"Oh, you're getting it now!" Sarah jumped up and whirled around just in time to catch another pillow to the face. "Awk!" she squawked in indignation and started flailing at Chuck with her pillow. He was doing a decent job of staying out of her zone of terror. She ducked another swing of his pillow and stepped in close to him. She hooked a leg behind him and then put an arm around him tossing him to the bed.
Sarah leapt on top of him. Grabbing one of Ellie's throw pillows from the top of the bed she whacked him repeatedly in the face with it until he covered his head with his arms and yelled. "Okay, Okay I surrender; I'll stay in the car!"
Sarah adopted a smug look and tossed the pillow away. "Ha, I win!" She looked down at him. He looked so adorable and she shuddered a bit. It still overwhelmed her just how much she loved Chuck, nothing in her life had prepared her to cope with these kinds of feelings. She bent over him and kissed him her hands on either side of his head. The kiss became deeper and she was hungry for it. She could feel her need building in her. She felt Chuck's hands slide up her legs and under pajama top. It was becoming a very interesting Christmas morning.
Suddenly Chuck's fingers dug into her ribs, eliciting a shriek from her. She squirmed away from him, but he followed her and continued his efforts to tickle her. She screamed and hopped off the bed. "CHARLES BARTOWSKI!" she shouted angrily holding her hands out in front of her. But he got around her and tickled her again. She shrieked and fled, opening the door and running into the hallway and down the stairs.
Chuck was right behind her as they showed up tussled, red cheeked and panting in the kitchen. Devon raised an eyebrow at them. "Problems guys?"
"No." Sarah shrugged smiling sweetly. Chuck's arm came around her and his fingers found the sensitive spot he'd just been tickling. Sarah elbowed him hard to the stomach causing him to groan.
Devon smiled at them. "Tickle fight, Awesome. You guys want to go tell Ben that breakfast is ready?" Tyler was already seated in his high chair.
"Sure," Chuck replied. He turned and started walking back to the stairs.
"Wait for me!" Sarah yelled and she ran and hopped on his back wrapping her legs around his waist and her arms around his neck.
Chuck gamely struggled up the stairs to Ben's room. He opened the door. "Breakfast is ready, buddy."
"Can I have a piggie back ride?" Ben asked.
"Sure!" Sarah said before Chuck could answer. "Hop on!"
"Oh, geez, are you trying to kill me?"
"Come on, Chuck," Sarah said kicking him gently. "You're the man of Christmas miracles, let's see some magic."
Chuck took the first step down the stairs and the groaned as he said. "Okay, buddy, hop on." It took Ben a moment to scramble up, but Sarah took one hand off of Chuck to wrap it around her back and support Ben.
"Let's go," she ordered.
"Easy for you to say," Chuck whined. He took the steps very carefully. He was teetering a bit and Sarah felt just the slightest bit sorry for him, but he had tickled her. Nobody was allowed to tickle her, so she held onto Ben and kept her grip tight. "Okay, we're here," Chuck gasped as he stopped in the kitchen. Taking pity on him Sarah slipped off his back before she put Ben down.
Sarah gave Ben a high five. "Good job!"
"What about me? I carried both of you?" Chuck asked.
Sarah stood up and leaned into Chuck and kissed him on the neck. "I'll thank you later." She grinned when she felt Chuck shiver.
They had a nice breakfast. It was cheery and light. Sarah had missed Ellie and Devon while she'd been on other assignments, but what she hadn't counted on was how much they'd missed her. Ellie had been beside herself on Chuck and Sarah's first trip back to Los Angeles. Sarah wasn't sure anybody had ever cried just from seeing her before. It had scared her a bit, when she was honest with herself, but Ellie had been so happy to see them. She kept switching back and forth between hugging Chuck and hugging her. Then she'd been so happy, insisting that Sarah and Chuck cancel their hotel reservations to stay with them. Since the moment Chuck and Sarah had moved back to Los Angeles she'd seen Ellie nearly every day. Sometimes it was just for a few minutes or a cup off coffee. Ellie and Devon had even joined her kickboxing class, but they were a constant part of Chuck and Sarah's lives.
She watched them as they opened their stockings. Chuck eventually nudged her. "You don't want to know what Santa brought you this year?" he asked. "Did you lose your excitement for toothpaste?"
Sarah moved over a bit so she could snuggle with Chuck. "I'm just realizing something."
"You know how much I love my stocking right?"
Chuck nodded and his hand rubbed her back and side in a loving caress. She was momentarily distracted by the feel of his hand. God how she loved it when he touched her. "As much as I love everything about my stocking, I think I like watching them open theirs more," she explained.
"Of course," Chuck nodded.
"What do you mean, of course?" Sarah elbowed him lightly.
"You love them. You enjoy seeing them happy, but that's why you have to open your stocking too. Because they love you and they want to see you be happy. That's what Christmas is about, family. That's why you belong here. That's why you've always belonged here. That's why I kept bringing you your stocking every Christmas. This is your family and it has been ever since even before we gave you a stocking on our mantle."
Sarah snaked her arms around Chuck and laid her head on his chest and held him. "How come you're so smart?" Sarah asked. "How come you always know how I feel?"
Chuck laughed. "I wish I always knew how you felt. If I'd never met John Casey, you'd be the most emotionally closed off person I know.
Sarah poked Chuck in retaliation for his crack. Then she reached into Chuck's stocking a pulled out the book on women. "You don't need this," she informed him.
"Oh, really?" Chuck asked. "I think it was a rather brilliant and thoughtful gift."
"You already know me better than I know myself and I don't really want you learning about other women."
"Hmm… I'll just have to concentrate on this item, then." Chuck held up the copy of Night Crawler 3: Silent Doom
"You got Night Crawler 3?" Ben said excitedly. "Can I play?"
"NO!" Ellie exclaimed. "You will not be playing that."
"But, Uncle Chuck…" Ben started before he was cut off by Ellie.
"Won't be playing it either. I don't want that kind of violence around here."
Chuck raised his eyebrows at Sarah and then smirked. "Shut up," she told him.
She dug through her own stocking looking for the white box at the bottom. "Whoah, I've never seen such blatant disregard for chocolate and tooth paste," Chuck admonished her.
"I know what I want…"
"Really, what do you want?"
"I want it to be April 4th already."
Chuck gave her a wide happy grin. She loved that grin. "Me too, but I don't think that's in your stocking."
Sarah shrugged. "Oh, well, there's always something good down here. A HA!" she cried in victory. She removed a white box. Inside she found a key. "A key?" she asked Chuck.
"Keep it, up, you know I'll get you back for your smart mouth." Sarah gave him a challenging look and he responded with a Cheshire Cat grin that made her want to smack him. "Okay, smart guy, what is my key for?"
"A lock, I'm guessing."
"Chuck…" Sarah said warningly.
"You want to go for a walk?" Chuck asked.
"You know, a little Christmas stroll?"
"I just thought you might want to stretch your legs. Let's go get dressed," Chuck suggested.
"You're being very mysterious," Sarah informed him.
"It's not like I'm devious…"
"Hey guys, we're going to go get changed and go for a little walk."
"Have fun," Ellie replied. Ellie knew, Sarah was sure of it, she had a look.
Chuck had already proposed, what else could he be hiding?
They got changed and Chuck and Sarah walked outside the front door of Devon and Ellie's and Chuck started strolling down the sidewalk. Sarah glanced around them but didn't see anything suspicious. She followed after him and put her arm through is elbow. "Where are we going?"
"I thought we were taking a walk?" Chuck replied.
They wandered through Ellie and Devon's neighborhood. It was a pleasant neighborhood full of two story houses with small yards. There was a park not far from where they lived and Chuck and Sarah wandered through it. "I like it here. I wish it wasn't so far from downtown."
"Would you really want to live so close to Ellie?"
"Are you kidding, yeah? Why wouldn't I?"
"Well it would be harder to hide what you do in your home office if they can just stop by..."
"Maybe, but it would be great to be able to stay so close to them."
"Chuck is, this, the key to a house?"
"In a way."
"You bought a house?" Sarah asked skeptically.
"Oh, no, no way, not without talking to you about it."
"Then what is it?"
"You haven't figured it out yet?"
"Chuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck…" Sarah moaned.
"Okay, Okay, come on," Chuck put an arm around her and they started back towards Devon and Ellie's. Chuck stopped her in the driveway.
"Chuck, just tell me!"
"We're here, use your key…"
It didn't register right away. Ellie and Devon's garage was always locked. I had been since ever since Chuck and Sarah had come back. She'd never though much of it, it was no longer her job to invade people's privacy.. Sarah took the key and unlocked the side door and stepped inside. It was dark. She flipped on the light. "Surprise!!!" several voices shouted causing her to nearly jump out of her skin.
"What?" Sarah asked. Devon, Ellie and Ben were standing in the garage. Tyler was in Ellie's arms they were standing around a car…her car. "My Porsche?" Sarah asked.
"Chuck told us how you had to sell it when you went to Africa…" Ellie explained. "One of Devon's friends bought it from you and we bought it from him as soon as you left. We've had it ever since. Chuck sent a check for it a couple of years ago. It's been here waiting for you. He said you wouldn't want to part with it."
Sarah turned and looked at Chuck in astonishment. "You kept my Porsche for me?"
"The keys are in it," Devon offered. "He walked around the car and kissed her on the cheek. "Merry Christmas, Sarah. Come on guys, lets give them a chance to try it out." Devon hit the automatic garage door opener as he pulled Ben out the door and Ellie came and hugged her before she and Tyler followed.
"You bought my Porsche?" Sarah asked again… She couldn't seem to wrap her mind around it. She loved this car.
Chuck smiled and hugged her. "It's the only part of your cover that wasn't really a cover…you loved this car. You were torn up when you had to sell it. I thought you might like to keep it…"
"But Ellie and Devon…"
"Love you and were happy to help me out. Come on, lets go for a drive," Chuck opened the car door and sat her inside. She fired it up and it started right up sounding just like it had the last time she drove it. There were fifteen thousand extra miles on it, but other than that it was just like she left it. "They drive it to work a couple times a week and I drive it when I'm out here, but it's still yours," Chuck offered as he watched her run her fingers over the console."
"Chuck…this is amazing…" her voice cracked. "I can't ever…"
"You don't have too," Chuck replied. "You did 100% more than this when you were protecting me. I love you." He kissed her, but she was still too in shock to really notice it much. "Come on, let's cruise over to Morgan and Anna's wish their kids Merry Christmas." Sarah put the car in gear and let the clutch out slowly and it zipped forward just like it always had. A few minutes later she was cruising down the 405 towards Torrance and the last few years were just a bad memory. It was just she and Chuck in Los Angeles at Christmas.
After they'd had dinner that night and the dishes had been done. Chuck was reading a story to Ben, Devon was watching football in the den and Sarah and Ellie sat down at the kitchen table over a pot of mint tea. "I love how much you love Christmas," Ellie told her after they'd been chatting for a few minutes.
"You just melt into Chuck when you open your stocking…I just…You're never as expressive as you are on Christmas. It's neat."
Sarah blushed. "That's all Chuck. I didn't like Christmas very much when I was kid. My mom died when I was really young and my Dad…well my Dad, he isn't a very good person. I grew up resenting Christmas and how happy people were. I never really got it…until Chuck…" Sarah smiled whimsically. "He fixes the dark spots inside me."
"He's pretty great isn't he?" Ellie asked squeezing Sarah's hand.
"He's my own personal Santa Claus," Sarah said as she watched him reading to Ben.
She hadn't noticed Ellie moving until she felt the other woman's arms around her. "Thanks for bringing him home."
Sarah was at home. They'd come back to their apartment when Ben went to bed. They'd taken Sarah's Porsche. Now Sarah was nestled in the crook of Chuck's arm her head on his shoulder as she traced patterns on his chest.
"I have to hand it to you," she said.
"Huh?" Chuck asked sleepily.
"Do you remember the first time you invited me to Christmas?"
"Sure…at the yogurt shop, right? Right before Fulcrum turned the Buy More into a drive through."
"Yep, that was it. Do you remember your sales pitch?"
"Prepare to be heart warmed…"
"I expected you to fail," Sarah interrupted him. "I had never liked Christmas. I was afraid that your efforts to make me enjoy it would make me bitter. I underestimated you..."
"Does this mean you're heart warmed?"
Sarah giggled and picked her head up so she could kiss him. "It's safe to say you have melted my heart. Christmas is my favorite day of the year. I never thought that could happen." Chuck pulled her closer and she slid a leg over him so that she was laying across him look down into his beautiful eyes. "Merry Christmas, Chuck."
"Merry Christmas, Sarah."
A/N: Well that's it. I hope you enjoyed my Chuck/Sarah Christmas tale. I'll get back to work on Chuck vs. The Doldrums now. Thanks to everyone who left a review. In the immortal words of Devon Woodcomb, you're awesome!