A/N: Written for Yana (aka. Yaba) as part of the jello-forever secret Santa. The prompt was for a holiday Jane/Lisbon story, possibly featuring a mistletoe kiss. 'Tis the season of giving...
By the way, this if pure fluff.
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Mistletoe and Reindeer Antlers
Grace Van Pelt wandered into the bullpen bright and early in the morning wearing a Santa hat. Barring an emergency the team had the next few days off for Christmas vacation and she was determined to be festive. She didn't care if people laughed at her; she was getting into the spirit of things even if no one else did. And there was nothing anyone could say to stop her. Okay, well, so technically there were at least two people who could stop her. She wouldn't defy a direct order from either the interim director of the CBI or from Lisbon herself... But why should the director care? It was the holidays. People were bound to slack off a little bit. And it's not like they had any cases.
As for Lisbon, well, Lisbon might roll her eyes, but Grace had been working there long enough to know that the boss probably wouldn't say anything. And even if she did, she probably wouldn't do anything about it. Besides, wearing a Santa hat was sure to be tame in comparison to whatever Jane might do. Jane was quite possibly the team member who'd approve of the Santa hat the most. Cho would likely have no opinion. Rigsby had told her it'd looked cute this morning before he'd left her place, but had refused to wear one of his own, citing the fact that it would be far too suspicious if they showed up at work wearing matching Santa hats. Grace had rolled her eyes, but eventually let him get away with it. She honestly doubted that anyone (except Jane of course) would have made the connection since it wasn't like they would be the only two people wearing hats. Grace shook her head at her team's apparent lack of Christmas spirit as she grabbed a candy-cane from the jar on her desk (a seasonal touch that Rigsby whole-heartedly supported).
Cho was the second team member to arrive. He glanced at Van Pelt and his lips quirked slightly. "Nice hat," he told her.
"Thanks," she told him. "I've got another one in my bag if you want it."
"No, I'm good," Cho told her immediately.
"Why not?" she asked him.
"Why would I want to dress up as Santa Claus?"
"He's not real," Cho pointed out.
"Get into the spirit of things Cho. It's an idea that brings children joy in the holiday season!" Van Pelt said with a laugh.
"Yes, but there aren't any children here."
"I'm still wearing one," Van Pelt tried, even though she knew it was a lost cause.
"You can pull it off. I'd look like an idiot," Cho told her truthfully.
Van Pelt was shocked. "You don't know who the Grinch is Cho? You've got to be kidding me."
"I wasn't asking." Cho clarified, "I meant Who, as in Cindy-Lou."
"But I'm far more than two," Grace told him with a smile.
"Yes you are," Cho agreed. "But I'm still not wearing the hat."
"Fine then," Grace told him in a huff.
"Can I still have a candy cane?" Cho asked her.
"Sure," Van Pelt told him, handing him the jar.
"Thanks," he told her, before reaching into his jacket pocket and pulling out a mini Toblerone bar. "Happy Holidays Van Pelt," he said as he tossed it to her.
She grinned as she took it, "You too."
Cho smiled back and made his way to his own desk, after placing identical chocolate bars on Rigsby's desk and Jane's couch.
Rigsby was the next to arrive. He grinned at Van Pelt, and placed a soft hand on her shoulder. "Nice hat," he told her.
"Thanks," she told him with a smile.
"She's got an extra one if you're interested," Cho pointed out from his desk.
"I do," Van Pelt told the younger man (albeit for the second time). "Come on Rigsby."
But Rigsby just laughed, "No thanks, I think I'm good."
"Sure you are," Cho told him, knowing full well that by the end of the day Rigsby would also have a silly hat on his head.
Rigsby ignored that as he walked over to his desk. "Hey, thanks for the chocolate man," he said when he noticed his chocolate bar.
"No problem," Cho replied before going back to his paperwork.
"You know, you could have at least tried to be festive," Van Pelt told her (somewhat) secret boyfriend.
He grinned at her, "What you mean like by putting up mistletoe in the break room?"
That got his colleagues' attention. "You didn't!" Van Pelt exclaimed.
"Where is it?" Cho asked.
"Now that would be telling," Rigsby replied.
"You better hope Lisbon doesn't catch you," Van Pelt told him.
"Or get caught under it," Cho replied. "Remember the incident with Sanders from fraud last year?"
All three agents winced at the memory. The poor man still tried to surreptitiously hide behind something (or someone) whenever Lisbon entered a room.
"Wonder who'll get caught this year..." Rigsby added.
The three agents paused again, grinning as they mentally rolled through various possibilities.
"Ten bucks on Boomer and Carlyle," Cho started to say.
"Ten bucks on Boomer and Carlyle for what?" Lisbon asked as she strolled in.
"Nothing Boss," Cho said quickly.
Lisbon glanced between the three agents in the bullpen before she sighed, "Alright, who brought mistletoe and where is it?" she asked.
Van Pelt glanced at her two male colleagues who were both trying to avoid Lisbon's eyes. "Mistletoe?" she asked, trying to look as innocent as possible.
Lisbon looked at the younger agent before smirking, "Nice try. As long as it's not in my office doorway I don't really care." Rigsby and Cho exchanged a look at that. "Nice hat by the way Van Pelt."
"Thanks Boss," the younger agent replied.
"She's got another one just like it if you want one," Cho told his boss.
"I'm good thanks," Lisbon told him.
"Nonsense Lisbon," Jane said as he breezed into the bullpen. "Embrace the season, be festive."
"Then you wear it," Lisbon told him. "I'm way ahead of you."
"Why because you're wearing red socks?" he asked.
"No, although I don't even want to know how you knew that," Lisbon shot back. "I just wasn't wearing mine because it made driving difficult." Then to everyone's surprise she opened her bag and pulled out a pair of furry reindeer antlers on a headband and stuck them on her head.
"Nice!" Van Pelt said with a laugh.
"Very fetching," Jane told her with a smile.
"Thank-you," she replied after shooting Van Pelt a smile. "Which I guess leaves you with Van Pelt's Santa hat."
"I thought I'd leave that for Rigsby," Jane told her.
Lisbon shrugged, "Your choice," she told him. "If anyone needs me I'll be in my office. Oh, and Cho," she said calling over her shoulder and snagging a candy cane from Van Pelt on her way out.
"Yeah boss?" he asked.
"Forget Boomer and Carlyle. I want ten bucks on Fisher and Templeton."
Cho smirked, "You got it. I left chocolate on your desk."
"Thanks, I've got four boxes of truffles in there if you guys want them," she added before she left the room.
"Her office doorway?" Rigsby asked as soon as she was out of earshot. "Why didn't we think of that?"
"We didn't want to get shot?" Van Pelt suggested.
"Still..." Rigsby trailed off. It was dangerous territory, but the payoff might have been worth it.
"There's always next year," Cho told him.
Jane didn't say anything; he had a sudden craving for chocolate.
"Knock, knock," he said from her office door.
Lisbon looked up at him from her desk with a smile, "Hey Jane, you want something?"
"I believe you said something about truffles?"
She grinned and tossed him a box from her desk drawer. "Here you go, Merry Christmas."
"Thanks. And don't worry; you'll get your gift later."
"I wasn't worried," she told him. "And you didn't have to get me a gift."
"Of course I did. It's just a little token of my appreciation in the holiday season."
That got her attention, "Please tell me this gift is something tangible and not some scheme you've concocted involving half of the CBI without their knowledge."
Jane just laughed. "So suspicious. I can't tell you exactly what it is of course; that would ruin the surprise. But never fear, I told you not to worry and I meant it. I have no desire to make you tear your hair out so close to the holidays."
"I appreciate your restraint," Lisbon told him dryly.
Lisbon moved to go back to work, but changed her mind when he realized she was still leaning in her doorway. "Was there something else?" she asked.
"I was just wondering if you were really planning on wearing those all day," Jane remarked casually, gesturing to her antlers.
"Yeah. Why wouldn't I?" she asked him innocently.
"No reason," he replied quickly.
"Besides, I thought you said they were fetching," she added, clearly amused.
Oh, they were definitely fetching, Jane thought. No doubt about that. The combination of the very buttoned down Agent Lisbon in a very professional pantsuit paired with silly reindeer antlers was a sartorial contradiction that was far more attractive than it should have been. And when her eyes were dancing with amusement like that, well he might go so far as to call it adorable. Sitting at her desk, files open, antlers on her head like it was an everyday occurrence, it was well... it was a pleasant image. And certainly not something he thought he'd ever see. "You look lovely," Jane told her sincerely, pleased when her amusement changed quickly to surprise. "It's just unexpected," he admitted.
That got Lisbon's attention, "Unexpected?" she asked with a grin. "I surprised the great Patrick Jane?" she teased. "Guess Christmas just came early."
"Oh hush woman," he told her good-naturedly.
But as she was meant to, she ignored that. "Besides, I thought they might come in handy in case I needed to fend off any surprise attacks under the mistletoe."
"I'm sure your glare and your reputation would have taken care of that without the extra weaponry," Jane remarked.
Lisbon just laughed, "Good-bye Jane."
"Oh, one more thing," Jane told her ducking his head back in her office.
"Hmm?" she asked.
"Rigsby hung the mistletoe above the microwave in the break room. Thought I'd give you a heads up. We don't want another incident like Sanders do we?"
Lisbon just smirked before going back to her paperwork.
As it turned out the rest of the day ran fairly smoothly, even with a fair number of mistletoe-related incidents. Cho was irritated when Fisher and Templeton did in fact find themselves under the mistletoe, but always one to honour a bet he quite willingly gave Lisbon her winnings. Lisbon's personal favourite pair had been Greenway and O'Brian, who'd been bitter rivals since she'd gotten a promotion he'd been angling for. The frosty peck they'd exchanged had been awkward to say the least. Rigsby "accidentally" manoeuvred Van Pelt under the sprig he himself has placed, getting a sweet (if relatively chaste) kiss for his trouble. He grinned, figuring it'd be the only kiss he'd be getting at the office any time soon. His expression clouded over when he realized that the pretty redhead was a popular target and had been kissed on the cheek by at least three other agents over the course of the day. Lisbon did end up under the mistletoe, after forgetting it was there, but was inwardly pleased when the nearest male (Johnson from white collar crime) took one look at her before taking a giant step back. Cho wasn't so lucky, getting caught with his boss under a second sprig of mistletoe in the hallway. Rolling her eyes at the looks they were getting from passers-by, Lisbon merely placed a hand on his shoulder before giving him a quick kiss on the cheek. His grin and simple "Merry Christmas boss," was met with shocked stares from any lingering agents. Her barked, "Don't you people have work to do?" got them moving again. For his part Jane managed to elude the skill of many of the woman of the CBI, most of who admitted freely that they wouldn't mind catching the grinning imp.
All in all a good day. And Lisbon was hoping to get out reasonably early. Most of the team had already left, wishing her a Merry Christmas on their way out (she'd tried not to smirk at Rigsby in his Santa hat), and was hoping to leave herself in about ten minutes. Walking back into her office she noticed something that resembled nothing so much as a fountain of wrapping paper and ribbon sitting on her desk. Smiling to herself she didn't even bother to try and untangle it, merely grabbed a letter opener and sliced right through the complicated wrapping. The package contained a giant mug with a snowman on it, inside of which was a small bag of gourmet hot chocolate, a package of microwave popcorn and a small stuffed reindeer. Picking up a small note that fluttered out she read the message despite having a pretty good idea who it was from.
Thought this might come in handy for that Christmas movie marathon you're planning tonight.
It wasn't signed, but it didn't need to be. One, the fact that she hadn't actually told anyone her plans for the evening seriously limited the possible candidates, and two, she recognized his handwriting. Grinning to herself she grabbed her new friend and wandered out to the bullpen, sure that he'd still be around. Sure enough she found him lying on the couch, one hand draped over his eyes. Still, she doubted he was sleeping. "Jane," she asked quietly, just in case.
"I'm awake," he told her as he sat up with a smile.
"You're still here," she told him.
"Yes. But you knew I would be," he replied.
She grinned, "Thank-you for this," she told him, holding up the reindeer.
"I admit to a slight fondness for the species," he told her, his eyes twinkling. When she didn't say anything he stood and walked towards her. "You're not going to ask how I knew what your plans were?" he asked.
"Who knows how you know anything? I've given up trying to figure it out. For all I know you go through my trash every night," she told him with a shrug.
"Ah, yes. That's it, you've caught me," he told her dryly. "Actually, your whole demeanour is far more relaxed when you're going to spend your holidays doing something stress-free to please yourself, like watching movies on your couch, than it is if you're doing something expected but that comes with added stress, like visiting over-protective and nosy family members," he told her with a grin.
"Ah," was all Lisbon said, noticing he was standing directly in front of her.
"Well, I guess nobody's perfect," Jane remarked.
Lisbon was confused by the sudden subject change, "What?"
"I managed to avoid scheming women all day, it was inevitable one of them finally bested me," was all he said by way of explanation.
"Jane what the hell are you talking about?" Lisbon asked.
But Jane just continued as if she hadn't spoken. "I'm flattered that you wanted to get me under the mistletoe so much Lisbon, really I am. You should have said something before now."
"Jane. Focus. We are not under the mistletoe," she couldn't help pointing out as she gestured to the ceiling above them.
"Then what do you call this?" he asked as he plucked the furry headband from her head and showed her the sprig of the plant that had been hung from the top of the left antler.
"Oh come off it Jane, we both know you put that there somehow," she told him, telling herself that the spike in her pulse was just because he was the one man she wouldn't be able to intimidate away, and who knew what he'd use this opportunity to do.
"And how did I do that without you noticing?" Jane asked with an indulgent grin.
"The hell if I know. Misdirection?" she guessed. "I thought a group of magician assassins would come and kill me if you told me that."
If anything his grin widened. "Alright, well I know you don't like it when people spring things on you, and try and take advantage so..." Jane trailed off but to Lisbon's surprise he took the headband and placed it on his own head, mistletoe and all. It was an interesting visual to say the least. "Ball's in your court Agent Lisbon." He told her with a grin.
She hesitated, but then figured what was the harm? "Well, I guess it's tradition," she told him. She stood on her tiptoes, placed a hand on his shoulder to steady herself and placed a soft kiss on his cheek, very similar to the one she'd given Cho earlier, "Merry Christmas Jane," she whispered.
He turned and met her eyes and she saw the amusement in his own expression, "Is that the best you can do Agent Lisbon?" he asked with a challenge in his eyes.
"You think you can do any better?" she asked softly.
"Are you asking me to demonstrate?"
"No I've got it under control," she whispered , moving her hand from his shoulder to the back of his neck and leaning back in to kiss him softly on the lips.
After a few seconds Lisbon pulled away, pleased to note that Jane seemed ever so slightly shaken. Grinning at him she took her antlers from his head and placed them back on her own (after removing the mistletoe and placing it in his coat pocket. "Merry Christmas Jane," she told him before she turned and left the bullpen.
"Merry Christmas Lisbon," he called after her.
When she got to the doorway she turned, "Oh and Jane? Movie marathon starts at eight, if you're interested."
"You're sure I won't ruin your relaxing evening by causing added stress?"
Her grin turned into a full smile, "I'd have thought that would be obvious from my demeanour," she told him before she really left.
Jane felt his own smile widening. He'd have to give her that one. After all, she was right. It absolutely was obvious.