I wanted to make a Christmas fanfic of Neal and Peter. I also wanted to make one in which the fact that Peter is the one holding Kate hostage is nonexistent. I sure hope Peter is still a good guy.
Anywho, I've had this idea for a while and now I have the time to actually turn it into a story. It might go on after Christmas though. I had originally planned it to be short and sweet but, you know, once you start writing, the story kind of writes itself. So, it will still be sweet, just a little longer.
Hope you enjoy and a Merry ChristmaHanaKwanzakkah to you all. ^_^
A White [Collar] Christmas
"You want me to do what?"
Peter Burke stared wide-eyed at his wife in complete disbelief, his coffee cup hovering inches from his open mouth.
"You heard right," Elizabeth Burke chided, placing her hands on her hips in a scolding fashion.
"B-but," Peter stammered, lowering his cup of coffee, "it's already Christmas Eve."
Elizabeth sighed and slid into the dining table chair opposite Peter like an officer trying to ease a confession out of a convict in the interrogation room.
"The sale is only for today," she pleaded, "and I can't go because I have to help my mom find a Christmas turkey. After that I have to decorate the house and make our own Christmas turkey."
"How convenient for you," Peter grumbled, glaring down at the table.
"Hey, it's not my fault she forgot until the last minute."
"So did you."
"No, I have all my gifts ready and wrapped."
"Then why do I have to go?" Peter whined, sulking in his chair.
"Because, mister," Elizabeth stated firmly, waving her finger accusingly at her husband, "you have yet to buy me a Christmas present."
Peter blanched and his eyes opened wide. He tried to sink lower into his chair, to just disappear from the daggers El was shooting in his direction.
It was true. He had forgotten to buy Elizabeth – his own wife – a Christmas present. Sure he had forgotten things in the past… like his honeymoon, but he had made up for it.
Now it was Christmas Eve. Shops were starting to close while traffic increased with the flurry of people who were also out doing last-minute Christmas shopping. And El wanted him to go out there amid the chaos of shoppers to buy her something.
It was a dangerous act, one that made him cringe.
"And don't try to wiggle your way out of this one," Elizabeth huffed. "I've been watching you lately and not once have I seen you enter this house with a present under your arm. I even checked the tree –" She waved her arm in the direction of the Christmas tree beautifully adorned in festive decor in the living room for emphasis "– not a single present."
"All right, all right," Peter sighed in defeat, "I'll go shopping." The word came out through gritted teeth.
Elizabeth's face brightened instantly as she jumped up from her chair to drape her arms around Peter.
"Thank you sweety," she cooed as she kissed his cheek.
Peter couldn't help but smile as he turned his head to catch El's lips with his own.
Giggling, she pulled away and started to clear up the table.
"Now take your time," she instructed from the kitchen sink. "I don't want you rushing and buying some cheap old thing."
She wiped her hands on her jeans and turned to smile at Peter. "You have to make sure it's perfect." She gave him a wink and moved out of the room towards the stairs.
"Oh," she said suddenly, her head popping back into Peter's view, "and bring Neal."
Peter took the steps two at a time as he raced up the stairs after Elizabeth. He sailed around the corner and skidded to a stop in the bedroom doorway, huffing angrily.
"What?" he growled.
Elizabeth was nonchalantly looking through the closet for a nice outfit to wear while shopping with her mother. She didn't even glance at Peter.
"Take Neal with you," she said simply.
"Yeah, I got that part." Peter snapped as he marched into the room. He planted his hands on either side of Elizabeth, trapping her between the closet and himself. "Why?"
Elizabeth stopped her search with a sad sigh and turned to fully face Peter, tilting her face up slightly to gaze back into his burning eyes.
"He's been in prison for four years," Elizabeth replied softly.
The anger washed clear from Peter, leaving an aching cold in the pit of his stomach that made his heart hurt.
"For four years, Neal has been stuck in prison without any friendly company let alone Christmas. And before that, he was too busy spending all of his time running from you to sit down and enjoy the holidays." Elizabeth reached up to cup Peter's face gently between her hands.
"His family never contacts him, if he even has a family, and the one person he does care about is missing." Elizabeth stroked Peter's face with her thumb.
"June…" Peter started but the rebuttal died in his throat.
Elizabeth shook her head. "June is a wonderful person and I'm sure she loves Neal, but she has her own family. You know as well as I that Neal won't want to burden her by staying while her family is over.
"It may not seem like much to you but, Peter, we're all that Neal has."
Peter gazed down softly at his wife. He dropped his arms to her waist and embraced her loosely. He knew she was right.
"I guess," Elizabeth continued, her warm eyes searching Peter's, "I just want him to have a real, family Christmas."
Peter sighed and dipped his head down to touch his forehead to Elizabeth's.
"All right," he said softly. "I'll bring Neal."
Elizabeth smiled and touched her lips to Peter's. "Don't forget to bring him back here for dinner."
"I won't," he promised.
"You're a good man," she said sincerely.
"Yeah, I know," Peter sighed as he pulled away.
He offered Elizabeth a farewell smile and left the room.
"Don't forget," Elizabeth shouted after him. "Get me something nice!"
Ah yes, Christmas shopping. I myself have done some last-minute shopping. Not a treat. I do agree with Peter. Shopping is a bit of a horror. And all those people. Well… you'll see that in the upcoming chapters.
I do so love the brotherly relationship between Neal and Peter so of course I'd send them out shopping together.
Until next time,