AN: A Christmas drabble that I wrote for a little challenge ADifferentForest. A pre-Twilight holiday with the Cullens scene.

Happy Holidays! =)

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Carlisle stood quietly, gazing into the fire as it warmed his icy extremities. The entire house smelled of pine and cinnamon, a tree artfully arranged on the other side of the fireplace. Even though the years passed by so quickly that they began to blend together, his wife still made the effort every December to go all out with her Christmas decor. Music played softly in the background and the holiday tunes danced throughout the air.

..

Here we are as in olden days,

Happy golden days of yore.

Faithful friends who are dear to us

Gather near to us once more.

..

A small smile formed on his lips as he heard Esme's car coming down the gravel driveway to their large, yet still cozy, house in Alaska. Only mere moments later, her chest was pressed to his back and her arms wrapped around his waist, as he let out a contented sigh.

"I missed you."

The tinkling laugh that she responded with warmed his silent heart.

"I was only gone an hour, dear."

He turned and pulled her to his chest. "An hour is too long then, my love."

He stroked her caramel hair adoringly and looked down into her shining golden eyes.

"Oh, Carlisle," she sighed as she rested her head against his chest. "You always find a way to melt my heart."

He pulled back slightly and gently cupped her cheek. "I try my best. I always enjoy each and every moment spent in your presence, dear wife."

Esme leaned up on her toes and met Carlisle's lips in a sweet and tender kiss.

"Whooo, go Carlisle!" Emmett's gregarious voice echoed through the house.

Carlisle chuckled and shook his head. It was useless to try and admonish their boisterous "youngest" child, so he remained silent. Choosing instead to silent sway with his wife to the music. Soon, all three of their adopted children found their way into the room. Edward pulled a book from the shelf as Rosalie and Emmett began to play a game a chess.

Their family was unconventional, even before adding the vampiric aspect, but they were still a family. Carlisle let his gaze sweep over his children and he felt thankful and happy for each and everyone of them.

The music shifted and a more upbeat song came on, causing Emmett's head to whip up with a grin. Edward groaned quietly and shook his head, already knowing what was about to come out of his brother's mouth.

"Why would anyone want to sleep in peas?"

Rosalie looked up and glared at him in her own loving way. "It's peace, Emmett."

He looked contemplative for a moment before responding. "Oh, that makes more sense I guess. Oh, and really? Rounding yon virgin and child sounds like something the Volturi would do."

He let out a mock shudder. Edward rolled his eyes from his place on the couch and Esme turned her face to hide her smile. As much as Emmett acted like a buffoon at times, his family knew the real him. He was very intelligent, but he enjoyed playing the clown a little too much.

"Oh, Emmett," Rosalie replied. "I worry about you sometimes."

Emmett only grinned before check mating her king.

Carlisle turned his gaze back onto the crackling wood and watched the fire change colors. He squeezed Esme a little tighter and once again thanked a higher power for his dysfunctional and special family. He couldn't picture his life without them.