I meant to write something Christmas-related last year… but obviously I wasn't able to accomplish that much. XD So here I am, trying again once more in the hopes that everything will work out before my inspiration dies a swift and brutal death.
Once more, this isn't particularly inappropriate. Just fun and a teeny bit sexy.
Prompt: 20. The road home
I won't ask for much this Christmas, I won't even wish for snow
I'm just gonna keep on waiting underneath the mistletoe
I won't make a list and send it to the North Pole for Saint Nick
I won't even stay awake to hear the magic reindeer play
'Cuz I just want you here tonight, holding onto me so tight
What more can I do?
Baby, all I want for Christmas is you
- "All I Want for Christmas (is You)" by My Chemical Romance (in my opinion, far superior to the Mariah Carey version)
"You're telling me you never had one?"
Behind the wheel, Annie shook her head and laughed. "No," she repeated. "I told you I've never had one."
"How is that possible?" Auggie questioned, cocking his head. He'd been absolutely baffled by her answer for the last five minutes, like he kept expecting her to burst out that she had been screwing with him this whole time. "It's like you've never had Christmas!"
She laughed, this time mostly from his absolute horror. "Okay, let's not be melodramatic," she replied. "I still had Christmas."
"But you didn't have a Christmas tree," he pointed out, unwilling to back down. "That's like no Christmas!"
"Hey," she said, annoyed, flicking on her turn signal and slowing to a stop. "We had a Christmas tree. It just happened to be a fake one."
"Exactly!" he said animatedly, almost shouting as he pointed in her direction triumphantly—and missed by a few inches. "Fake—not real!"
Annie rolled her eyes, turning the wheel. "We moved to a different base like every other year. Sometimes more! It was more practical to just keep a fake one with us as we moved around. It wasn't always easy to find a Douglas fir, you know."
"It's not the same," he told her, stubborn as ever. "And blue spruce is far superior to Douglas."
She huffed, drumming her fingers against the steering wheel half-mindedly. "Yeah, well, you're just going to have to get over it," she replied shortly, grinning mostly to herself. "Because we had a fake tree and I always thought it was lovely."
"It's not the same though," he repeated stubbornly.
"I know it's not the same," she said wryly. "It actually lasts longer than a month and a half."
Auggie turned his head towards her, glaring at her for her snarkiness. "You do not get to knock real trees. They are way better than plastic ones."
Annie stared out at the inky black landscape, her headlights cutting the darkness only about fifteen yards in front of them. "Your 'superior' trees are too difficult to maintain for an Army brat."
He made a noise in the back of his throat, and she looked over at him wildly, convinced she must've misheard him. "Did you just growl at me?" she asked, shocked.
"No, I did not just growl," he replied, but she noticed with a quick glance that the tips of his ears were rapidly turning pink.
Annie grinned. It wasn't often that she made Auggie blush. "You totally growled at me," she disagreed, slowing down as they entered the neighborhood. "You just turned into Scrooge Cujo!"
"Now look who's being melodramatic," he grumbled, his brow furrowing petulantly.
She laughed at his over the top pouting, her eyes following the brightly lit and sometimes over-decorated cookie cutter houses. "I just can't believe you take this whole Christmas tree thing so seriously."
"It is serious," he replied, dropping the pout to go back to his original argument. "It's an important part of the authentic Christmas experience."
Annie laughed at his know-it-all tone, and quickly shot him a dirty look. "You're just making stuff up."
"I'm not making anything up," he responded haughtily. "And you'll understand my logic perfectly when I get us a blue spruce tree next week."
Her eyebrows shot up on the use of the word 'us.' "And how do you plan on dragging this mythical blue spruce back to your apartment—I'm assuming you'll be keeping it at your place, because God knows I have no room for it."
"Of course we'll be keeping it at my place," he replied, no-nonsense. "And you'll be surprised what people are willing to do for you when you're pretty and ask nicely."
At his wide, charming grin, Annie busted out laughing. Lucky for him and her car, she had just pulled into Danielle's driveway and they were at an almost complete stop. In between pants and wheezes of laughter, she managed to reply, "I can't believe you just said that!"
Auggie frowned at her reaction, particularly when it took her several minutes to get her thoughts in order and let her laughter die down. Finally, she put her VW in park and turned towards him. "Tell you what," she said, still pretty breathless. "You actually manage to get a blue spruce a week and a half before Christmas, I'll take a whole day out of my vacation time and decorate it with you."
His initial frown spread into a gigantic smile, and she was immediately reminded of a little kid. She bet he was really cute when he was little. "You've got a deal," he agreed.
She knew he was going to make that tree happen, even if she wasn't sure how. She learned very early on not to doubt Auggie's resourcefulness, sight or no sight. He was pretty creative—or crazy—like that.
She turned off the ignition and pocketed her keys, and as they stepped out of the car she snickered to herself. "You should know right now that if I decorate with you we have to use those multicolored lights."
Auggie exited as well, and right before he left he picked up the hefty cloth bag by his feet and handed it over to her. He grinned and found her arm, wrapping his fingers around the skin above her elbow. "I was always more partial to all white, now that I think about it," he replied wistfully, and she was sure he was probably picturing a Christmas tree from years before.
"Too bad," she replied shortly with a little laugh. "The multicolored ones were way prettier so that's what we're using."
"Whoa whoa whoa," he said, slowing down in the driveway and pulling her back by her arm. "This is still my Christmas tree. I get final decision on the color of the Christmas tree lights."
"Or I could tell you I got white lights but really decorate with the multicolored ones," she said, grinning diabolically to herself as she and Auggie walked up the driveway.
He gasped dramatically, clutching his chest dramatically with his free hand. "You would do that to a blind guy?" he asked, eyes wide.
"Oh, don't even try that crap on me," Annie replied, laughing loudly. "You are hardly a poor defenseless blind guy. Picking on you is more than fair."
They stepped at Danielle's front porch, and he turned towards her, frowning once more. "It is completely unfair," he expressed. "But you know what, I'm going to be bigger person and allow multicolored lights."
She narrowed her eyes and grumbled at his sense of charity, and she stepped closer so that, in her heels, she was almost eye-to-eye with him. "Oh yeah, you are such a bigger person," she replied sarcastically, unable to hide her smirk.
"I am," he agreed, leaning closer. "In fact—"
"Annie! There you are!" Danielle shouted, yanking the door open. Her blonde hair was piled on the top of her head, and there were two bright red spots on either side of her cheeks that were rapidly growing brighter with each passing second. "And Auggie! Why are you guys standing out here? It's cold!"
Annie smiled at her sister's volume, and that smile stretched even wider when Auggie squeezed her arm, silently conveying exactly what he thought. "Sorry, Danielle," she apologized, turning away from Auggie and stepping towards the door. "We got distracted talking about Christmas trees. But I brought wine!"
Danielle cooed appreciatively, happily taking the proffered bottle. Auggie and Annie walked into the doorway, but before they could get more than a step, Danielle stopped them, hands out. "Where do you think you're going?" she asked, eyes sparkling.
She pointed up, and Annie didn't need to look to know what her sister had done. "There's mistletoe in the doorway, isn't there?" Auggie asked, tilting his head towards her ear as Danielle continued to grin maniacally.
"Unfortunately, yes," she mumbled, shooting her sister a weak glare.
"C'mon," Danielle said with a quick double-clap. "It's part of the Christmas experience!"
Auggie smiled, turning his head towards her once more. "You seem to be hearing that phrase a lot lately," he observed quietly. His thumb was stroking back and forth over the side of her arm, and the movement was comforting even through her winter coat.
"It's amazing I put up with you weirdos," she muttered under her breath as she reached up and cupped his jaw, gently tilting so he was better facing her. She hesitated, throwing up a silent curse at her sister, and then closed the gap and kissed Auggie.
He responded immediately, and while the kiss stayed chaste she could feel her toes curling in appreciation in her leather boots. She pulled back after a few seconds, blinking owlishly as she tried and failed to process the warmth spreading through her chest.
When she watched him lick his lips carefully she felt her stomach drop unexpectedly, but she turned and faced her sister before she could act on any compulsions. "There," she said with fake cheerfulness. "Now can we come in?"
Danielle pouted a little but let them finally step in and Annie didn't miss Michael's confused expression as he stood in the hallway, holding a half-empty bottle of chardonnay in his hand.
As they stripped out of their coats, Annie leaned over and muttered in Auggie's ear, "I think my sister thinks she's a character in a romantic comedy."
"Alcohol will do that to you," he replied, his grin crooked.
Michael stared at his wife bafflingly. "Did you make them kiss?" he asked incredulously.
Before Danielle could think of a response, he added, "You haven't made anyone else kiss under the mistletoe."
Auggie chuckled as Danielle continued to fumble—and fail—for a response. Annie flinched only a little when his hand settled at the center of her back. "Your sister definitely thinks she's a character in a romantic comedy."
She winced. Inhaling carefully, Annie bumped her shoulder against his and whispered, "Seriously. Sorry for Danielle's… well, whatever you want to call that back there. She's drunk."
Auggie grinned and patted her back. The way they were standing so close made her feel like they were in their own little bubble. "It's not that big of a deal," he assured her. "I've been through way worse things with some drunk people."
She smiled at the wry, joking look on his face, but there was still a bubble of nervousness churning in her body. Screw the CIA, Danielle was going to be the one that caused her early death.
"Now let's get this Christmas party on the road," he said with a wink.
"Hey… Aug?" Annie shoved the apartment door open, hefting her purse over her shoulder as she carted in a six-pack in her other hand. "I brought beer!"
"Perfect!" he called. It sounded like he was coming from the living room. "Look what I brought!"
"You brought something to your… house?" she asked curiously, walking slowly and craning her neck. When she spotted him, she stopped in her tracks. "Oh my God. You found a Christmas tree."
"And decorations!" he announced cheerfully. There were three or four bags between him and the tree, and as far as she could tell they were all full of Christmas tree accoutrements.
"Wow," Annie breathed, eyebrows hiking. "When you say you're going to buy a Christmas tree, you really go all out. I should've brought more beer."
"I told you I was getting us a real Christmas tree," he replied proudly. "And we're probably not going to have a lot of time for beer, so there should be more than enough."
Annie smiled, crossing the room and dropping the six-pack on the coffee table. "Good," she said. "Now what kind of decorations did you get?"
Auggie picked up two bags and handed them over to her, and then turned back to the tree like he was observing it. He didn't look any different than usual, in a dark gray sweater and jeans, but she couldn't help appreciate him a little more than before. Impressive, because she already appreciated him about 50 times more than everyone else on the planet.
She delicately picked through the bags, confusion marring her pretty face as she noticed the commonality among the contents. The two bags were entirely full of ornaments. "They're all white and silver," she said, the unspoken question on her lips.
"Yup," he replied, picking up the other bag and dangling it. "I figured they'd go nicely with the lights."
Catching sight of the bag, she gently set the other two on the couch and reached over, snagging it from his fingers. He had bought two boxes of the little Christmas lights, but it was the label on the box that made smile light up her whole face. "You got the multicolored ones," she said, looking up at him with unadulterated glee.
"I did agree to multicolored lights," he answered, edging closer to her side. "I'm assuming from the sound of your voice this means you like them."
"Yes, they're perfect," she replied. Acting on a compulsion, she leaned up and brushed her lips against his cheek. She blushed a little at the impulsive move, but turned her attention back to the cardboard boxes. "And I'm sure they'll be very pretty with the white and silver ornaments."
"That's what I'm hoping," he said brightly, and she noticed that there was a similar flush spreading across his cheeks as well. "You know, from what I remember of Christmas tree decorating. And colors."
Her smile twisted slightly at the flippant remark, but she was quickly distracted by the final bag on the floor, resting closest to the tree. "Hey, what's in that last one?"
At her question, Auggie's eyes started to twinkle, but it wasn't until that Cheshire cat grin appeared that she knew she was going to have a problem. "That's something I thought you'd like," he responded, and when he winked she actually felt her stomach drop.
"How is it that that sentence just filled me with so much dread?" she asked quizzically, trying to peek around him as he walked over and picked the last bag up.
"Hey, that's not nice," he chided. "And I happen to think you'll like it. If I remember correctly it should look quite nice on the tree."
Annie's eyes were still narrowed, but she did want to know what else he had bought for them. "Did you get a tree-topper?" She hoped he bought an angel—that's what they had one their tree, and she always thought it was prettier than a star.
"That's one place we can put it," he replied evasively, digging through the bag and pulling out his final gift. When he finally presented the object, it took several seconds longer than she expected for her to recognize it.
It wasn't until Auggie held it over their heads and winked again that she understood what the white berries and dark green leaves tastefully tied with a bright red bow really were.
"Merry Christmas," he said proudly.
Annie paused for about a second, long enough for her jaw to drop open. And then she reacted impulsively. He was close enough that he didn't have much of a warning when she took a step and tackled him into the couch.
Auggie let out an, "oof!" as she knocked the breath out of him, but she didn't relent, pinning him to the couch before he could react. "You asshat!" she exclaimed, slapping his shoulder angrily.
Kind of breathlessly, Auggie laughed at her rage. She was going to hit him again, but she felt the muscles under her shift and contract, and suddenly she was on the floor on her back with him hovering over her. She expelled the air through her lungs as she blinked dazedly. How the fuck had he done that?
"You know, Annie, it's not nice to call people asshats," he teased. "I thought you'd like my gift."
Auggie was lying between her legs, and she knew she could knee him if she really wanted. She wasn't truly angry with him enough to cause real damage, just embarrassed at Danielle's stupid drunken attempt at playing matchmaker. She wanted to joke with Auggie about it, but every time she tried words failed her.
She huffed and shifted and noted the way he adjusted his grip on her wrists accordingly. She wasn't going anywhere. "You weren't nice for making fun of me with that stupid mistletoe," she replied.
Auggie cocked his head to the side, his sightless eyes dancing with mischief. "Now who said I was making fun of you?" he asked, and her eyebrows drew together in confusion. He dipped his head down and all of a sudden she found herself kissing him once more.
Except it was the other way around because he was the one kissing her, she reckoned. Her eyes slid shut of their own volition, her jaw tilting up. When he gently pulled her bottom lip into his mouth, a throaty noise escaped the back of her throat.
Just when she expected him to deepen the kiss, he pulled away, breaking their closeness and releasing her wrists. Her eyes opened slowly, dazed by the sudden display of affection. Yes, he had bought the mistletoe, but she hadn't actually expected him to—
"There," he said, and if he hadn't still been about a half an inch from her face she probably would've missed the tiniest flicker of nervousness before a very satisfied smile slid onto face. "Now how 'bout we start Christmas tree decorating?"
Carefully, he extricated himself from her, and it wasn't until he helped her up that she felt back to normal. Sort of. She wasn't quite sure what possessed him to cross that line once more, much less why she secretly enjoyed it so much. This was going to require a lot of serious thought when she got back home.
"That sounds like a wonderful plan, actually," Annie replied, keeping her hand tight in his and squeezing. This mistletoe thing had brought something between them that she wasn't sure what to call, but she had a feeling it was a sign of good things to come.
Auggie grinned wide, and then winked. "Great. Now let's get started."
This was fun. I like to write seasonal pieces, and it's been a while since I've tried my hands at one. This was just fluffy and Christmas-y and fun. Most people listen to Christmas music after Thanksgiving; I write Christmas-themed fics.
I have no doubt every one that happens to celebrate Christmas has some pretty different ideas on the subject of fake trees. We've had one for over the last decade, but we also happen to own two dogs and two cats, and trust me when I say that majorly factors into tree decision-making.
But that's just my little anecdote. I hope you guys have great holidays, whatever you happen to celebrate! :D