Helen Magnus couldn't help but laugh as Big Guy walked into the sitting room, carrying a tray of rum balls and chocolate crackles, his face broken into a wide grin as he set them down onto the coffee table. He wore a red and green striped shirt and long red pants, bells tied in his hair that jingled with every movement. He had said that he was 'getting into the spirit of the occasion' but Helen suspected this was just something to take her mind off the news she had received earlier in the day. It worked for a moment.
"Who wants to play 'Monopoly'?" Kate asked, bounding in after Biggie, her hair in curls and in very much the same outfit as him, but with curly red elf shoes that jingled when she took a step.
"But we haven't done the presents yet!" Henry whined from his seat next to the tree, shaking a large present with his name on it. Will sat beside him, sipping warm eggnog and Nikola sat behind Helen on the couch, his arms wrapped around her shoulders. Christmas carols were playing softly in the background and Helen smiled at her family around her, feeling her heart constrict as she noticed again that Ashley wasn't there.
Christmas had always been her favourite time of year. Perhaps that was partly because Helen had discovered that she was pregnant with Ashley on Christmas day in 1888.
Apparently, history is repeating itself, Helen thought to herself sadly.
"Can we open them, doc, please?" Kate pleaded, dropping herself onto Henry's lap who chuckled.
"Yeah, can we?"
Helen laughed as her 'children' nagged her to let them open their presents and she nodded, sinking back into Nikola's embrace as she watched them. Her family kept growing but there was plenty of room and Helen loved big families.
Wrapping paper flooded the sitting room floor, each person sitting with an unwrapped gift in their lap. Nikola had somehow ended up with a large gold bow tied around his head and he and Helen were covered from head to toe with multi-coloured glitter, compliments of 'Huey, Dooey and Screwy' as Nikola called them. When the couple had opened a box from the trio, Henry had activated a switch that acted almost like a bomb, exploding with a cloud of glitter and tinsel. Helen had given Will tickets to see 'Rush', his favourite band and to meet them back stage after the concert. Kate got a Steno statue made out of old computer parts from Henry and she had given him the limited edition 'Skyrim' game for Xbox 360. Biggie knitted everyone a sweater, even Nikola who refused to wear his until Helen threatened to refuse him sex for the next six months and he threw it on immediately. Helen had given Big Guy the box set of 'Supernatural' which he placed in the DVD player as soon as he had opened it, claiming it was there after lunch entertainment.
Nikola kissed Helen as she handed him his present, a small package the size of a pen box, promising that hers was in the bedroom that they now shared together, after 4 months of dating. Helen frowned suspiciously but let it go, her heart racing at the thought of what he could have planned for her. It was times like that, that she hated him for making her blush at the very thought of him and what he could, would and had done to her.
She was surer than ever that she did love him, and that it hadn't just been those pesky Nubbins that had affected her emotions those several months ago.
Nikola drew a fingernail out to slit open the wrapping paper but Helen's hand on his had stopped him. He looked up curiously to see her smiling nervously at him.
"I'd like for you to open that later, when we are alone, if that's alright?" She asked and he nodded, a grin spreading across his face.
Lunch couldn't have finished any quicker in Nikola's opinion and as the dysfunctional family began to disperse, Will claiming he was going to see his dad for Christmas, Nikola leapt to his feet, taking his lover by the hand. Helen chuckled as he pulled her upstairs to their room, memories of the night she had done the same to him flashing through her mind and her face flushed.
When they reached the room, Nikola shut the door and stared intently at the present she had given him.
"It's very small," he observed, turning it over. "I am hoping that since you said you wanted it opened when we're alone, it will be a tiny little negligee or a G-string for you to wear for me."
Helen smiled, but felt a heavy weight like a ball of lead drop in her stomach, sending her heart to her throat as if on a trampoline. She watched as he slid the silver bow off the present, cutting the baby blue wrapping paper open and opened the chrome box lid.
She saw him froze and the breath stuck in her throat as he looked at her gift, wide-eyed. Carefully, he pulled it out, a piece of paper folded carefully under the object. He studied both for what seemed a lifetime before he looked up at her, his face unreadable.
"Nikola, please say something?" She pleaded as he approached her, clutching the present tightly in his hands.
He was silent for a moment, studying them again before he grinned manically, the nerves disappearing from Helen's stomach.
"You're going to have a Mini-me?" he breathed excitedly. "I'm going to be a father?"
Helen nodded, smiling as he discarded the positive pregnancy test and blood results onto the end table and kissed her hard, leaving their lips swollen and red.
"So you're happy about this?" She asked when they had caught their breath and he nodded, carrying her bridal style to the bed. She squeaked but said nothing, waiting for his answer.
"I am going to have a child that can help me take over the world!" Nikola exclaimed, laying himself beside her so he was staring in wonder and awe at her belly. Helen laughed, smacking his shoulder lightly.
"Not in this lifetime." She scolded and he pouted, but saw the pain that shone through her gaze, reading her perfectly. She didn't want another Ashley to happen, and it was up to him to make sure that didn't happen. She and this child were his responsibility.
They laid in silence until Helen sat up on her elbows, peering down at him.
"What did you get me?" She asked with a smile and he sat up quickly, only just remembering about it.
"It comes nowhere near your gift, but I saw this and thought of you," he said, retrieving a small square box from the cupboard, tiny air holes punctured in the lid and sides.
"This had better not be a dog," Helen mused, sliding the lid off and Nikola grinned, shaking his head.
Helen couldn't help but laugh as she picked an incapacitated Nubbin out of the box and felt the pheromones take control of her once again.
A/N: And that my dears, is the end of 'Solving Boredom'! Thanks for sticking with me! 3 you guys! *cookies for everyone*