A/N: HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! I thought of this idea as I was watching the ball not drop in NYC. I don't know why it didn't drop but the Clintons were all standing around ready to push the button. Maybe the TV network didn't show it but the point is that I thought of this and I couldn't want to put my idea to paper so to speak. So here it is, my New Year story to ring in 2009!

New Year's Kiss

The house was almost dead quiet with an exception to the low buzz of the television. It was almost midnight and Casey McDonald was the only member of her family that was still awake. She was currently curled up on the couch with a blanket and a big bowl of freshly popped popcorn. It was her own private tradition. Every New Year's Eve, she would sneak down the stairs to the living room and watch the ball drop in New York City. Her eyes scanned the television and the millions of people crowed Times Square in goofy glasses and hats. She longed to be there, standing in the cold in her own goofy glasses and foam hat. She longed to be a part of the huge mayhem that was Dick Clark's Rockin' New Year's Eve Party. There were only five minutes left of the year 2008. Five more minutes until the biggest year of her life.

"What are you doing up?"

Casey turned to see her stepbrother, Derek Venturi, standing at the bottom of the stairs. His arms were folded across his chest and he was only clad in boxers and a t-shirt. He looked cold. Casey almost found herself feeling sorry for the poor guy when she recalled that that morning when she went to shampoo her hair, she had found Elmer's glue in the shampoo bottle and on her hair. It was one of the worst pranks he had ever pulled on her. Casey had even sworn off talking to Derek and she had actually thought she'd keep her promise up until that moment.

"Talking to me, Princess?" He asked.

"Why not?" Casey sighed, "I'm just watching the ball drop…do not say anything immature to that!" Casey suddenly snapped before softening at Derek's somewhat shocked expression, "In New York City."

"Why?"

"Why what?"

"Why would you want to watch that?"

"Because," Casey sighed dreamily, "I've always wanted to go to New York City to watch it happen. It's just so…magical. The lights, the laughter, the shouting, the excitement. I want to be a part of that and I guess I figured that if I can't be there, I could at least just watch it on TV…"

"That is the lamest thing I've ever heard of!" Derek scoffed.

"Then leave," Casey retorted.

"I can't sleep with the racket of this stupid thing!" Derek rolled his eyes and flung his arm in the direction of the television.

"And so your plan is it to sit here and watch it until it's over?" Casey couldn't quite see the logic behind Derek's thinking as he sat down next to her on the couch.

"It's better than lying awake and staring at the ceiling."

Casey handed him the bowl of popcorn and let him take a handful before turning her attention back to the Jonas Brothers who were currently singing Burin' Up. She rolled her eyes and muttered something about how annoying they were under her breath.

"You don't like them either?" Derek asked, somewhat shocked.

"No," Casey scoffed, "No musical talent what so ever."

"And who, exactly, in your opinion, has musical talent?"

"Hmm…" Casey stared off for a moment before answering, "Jack's Mannequin. Dark Blue is like my theme song."

"Really?" Derek asked, "They aren't bad."

"Wait, was that a complement?" Casey asked.

"No…"

"It was! If it's not an insult, then I'll take it as a compliment."

"Remind me to insult you more then," Derek answered, not taking his eyes off the TV. He began to shiver and Casey wrapped the extra blanket around him, "What are you doing?" He asked, his voice suddenly becoming defensive as if she had just accused him of something.

"You're cold," Casey stated plainly before saying, "Why thank you, Casey. How thoughtful!"

"Thank you," Derek mumbled. Casey wanted to say something along the lines of 'are you feeling alright' but decided not to draw attention to the rare kindness he had shown her in just two words, "So how long until 2009?"

"A minute," Casey answered and chose against pointing out the countdown at the bottom of the screen. After all, the last thing she needed was another fight when things seemed to be going so well so far.

"I'm sorry I put honey in your shampoo," Derek suddenly blurted out.

"I'm sorry I called you a selfish idiotic cad."

"I'm sorry I told you I wish you never moved in."

"I'm sorry I told you I wish you never were my stepbrother."

"Casey…"

To her shock and amazement, just as the countdown hit one, Derek leaned forward and kissed her with all the passion, heat, hate, love, and painful tension he had bottled up since the moment he first laid eyes on her.

Each pulled apart both gasping, hungry for breath.

"I'm sorry," Derek struggle for breath as he quickly got up from the couch leaving Casey behind confused and bewildered.

"Me too," She sighed, "Me too."

A/N: I know the ending is sudden but I hope you enjoyed it. It's kinda depressing but leaves more to the imagination of what happened next. If you'd like to continue on to it, I may post it as a challenge to add a second chapter.