Disclaimer: I don't own anything.
Author's Note: This is my first time writing this couple so…Merry Christmas, or Happy Hanukah or whatever it is that you celebrate at this time of year. I got help with the ideas from Meloda26 and my sister.
Christmas Can Help Find You
Catalina was walking the halls of the Christa. Suzee wasn't here with her right now; instead she had gone off to spend some time with her sisters for a while that day. Catalina was very grateful that they had been able to figure out a way to switch her and Suzee back. She did enjoy being on Suzee's home planet, but it was still not the same. Though now that she was back in her own dimension she had to admit that it was weird being back here, and it being weird was something odd in and of itself.
Ever since she was back from Suzee's dimension and Suzee had returned to hers, Suzee wasn't around as often as she used to be Catalina wasn't quite sure as to the reasoning behind it but she was sure it had to do with the rest of the crew.
Before it used to be so easy, Suzee was her friend and hers alone. Now Suzee had formed her own bonds with each of Catalina's friends and so therefore there was sadness on both ends. At times Catalina wasn't too certain of her place. But then Suzee would try to placate her and make her feel better and she would succeed…for a while.
Catalina looked over to her side still half expecting to see Suzee there. She used to miss her friend's presence for different reasons then she did now. Before it was nice to have someone there who completely understood you; someone who was there for you as much as one could be when they lived in another dimension. Now she missed her presence merely for the sake that they were friends.
Rosie was still very nice, but she doubted that Rosie could actually be mean. She did remember Suzee telling her about the time that they all had evil doubles…that would have been interesting to see.
All of them still treated her as a friend. Bova, Radu and her still seemed to have that bond that they had before she had disappeared for that while. Of course Ms. Davenport and Commander Goddard were happy to have her back, though she wondered if part of that had to do with the idea of returning to the Star Academy with one less student.
There was one of them that she wasn't true certain of any more.
Their relationship had always been an interesting one. They would fight and bicker and try to dominate, and yet there was something there between the two of them. Back on the other Christa before things went all crazy he had agreed to tell Shang everything to stop him from torturing her. Though she had been asleep at the time Radu had told her about it, and that had made her…
Her thoughts then shifted to many different times and then that kiss she had bestowed on him. It was only on the cheek, but…it was for him. She wasn't sure what was going to happen and then Suzee was able to save her from sure death. And then things were messed up as she was in Suzee's dimension and Suzee was here.
But on one of their trips onto a foreign ship…or place, Suzee, Harlan, Radu and Commander Goddard might not have survived. Suzee had reluctantly told her about what happened upon their return. Though Suzee had kissed Radu, Harlan had kissed Suzee.
He had kissed her. He had never kissed Catalina.
Perhaps that was because he never liked Catalina that way. Suzee was interesting, and beautiful and smart. Very smart. Of course he fell for her. And Suzee had insisted that nothing had happened between her and Harlan. She had told Catalina that she did still find him very attractive, but if she was to start anything with any of the guys it would be Radu, not Harlan.
Catalina knew that Suzee was not lying. She knew that, even before the dimension switch Suzee had found Harlan an irritating, egotistical jerk. More times a jerk then an actual friend. But his…confidence was something Catalina admired. And she didn't mind that they had gotten into so many arguments, it hadn't stopped her feelings from growing for him.
And now she was back, and he probably wished that she had stayed in the other dimension and that Suzee was here.
As she walked past the lounge she stopped as she heard some music coming from it. That was odd seeing as it was night and almost everyone was asleep already. She knew that Rosie was for sure, and she was certain that the boys would have been asleep as well. Curious she decided to enter the room.
As she did she saw little colored lights around the room, some of which were blinking? Yes, they were blinking, but it didn't seem as though it was a malfunction. There was the music in the background, stuff she hadn't heard before. She wondered if this was a new thing that they had come up with or if perhaps…before she was able to think about anything else her thoughts were interrupted by someone.
Turning around she saw Harlan standing with a cup in his hand looking at her curiously. "Harlan."
"What are you doing here?"
"I live on this ship in case you forgot."
"I didn't forget."
"Oh. Well good." Cat wasn't sure how to interact with him on a one-on-one basis. It was confusing and a bit frustrating.
"I just meant, why aren't you in bed?"
"I couldn't sleep. Just decided a walk would be nice. What are you doing up? Shouldn't you be in bed?"
He looked at her for another minute before walking over to the couch and sitting down. "It's Christmas. Early Christmas. So I decided I'd sit up for a bit."
"It's a holiday."
"Right. One of your Earth holidays. I remember reading about it." Catalina stopped herself right there. She had been a bit curious and decided to do some more research on Earth customs. Though she could easily say it was so she could know more about all of them, she knew that wasn't entirely accurate. She did of course read information on different customs for all of her ship mates; she just focused more on some than others.
"You read about my holidays?"
She rolled her eyes, "Commander Goddard and Ms. Davenport are also from Earth."
"Yes, but they're not your age."
At this moment she was quite glad that she didn't have to lie about this next part, "I also read about Bova, Rosie and Radu's customs."
He stopped the cup in front of his mouth, frowned and then shrugged. He looked around the room which caused Catalina to raise her eyebrow. As soon as he saw that he took a sip and then asked, "So is Suzee here?"
The Saturnian couldn't help but feel chagrined, of course he would be wondering about Suzee. He did wish that Suzee had stayed. He didn't want Cat back at all. He might not have cared either way and maybe only saw her as an annoying sister. "Suzee is with her sisters right now. I can let her know you were looking for her." It was the last thing Cat wanted to do, but what else was she going to do. Suzee would know she was hiding something and…there was no point. But she would not be a liaison between the two. Of course that was only if Suzee actually liked Harlan the way he liked her.
Harlan shrugged again, "I was just wondering."
"Did you have something you wanted to say to her?"
"Nope. I was just wondering."
"I know that it's more than that."
He looked at her questioningly, "What is more than that?"
Now Cat wished she hadn't said anything at all, but she was in to deep. She looked around and her eyes fell on the cup, "What are you drinking?"
"Yeah, do you want to try some?"
Harlan got up and returned in a few minutes with another cup. He gestured towards the couch and reluctantly Catalina sat down. She took the cup from him thankful that his attention was on the drink and not on her comment anymore. She looked down at the brown liquid that was steaming. Slowly she took a sip from the liquid and was surprised to find that she liked it.
"Wow, this is good."
"Pretty much everyone likes it."
She took another sip and leaned back into the couch, "It's very relaxing."
"When I was younger my Mother and I would drink hot chocolate on Christmas morning. I was up and couldn't go back to sleep."
He looked off and Cat nodded, "That makes sense. You just wanted to share something with her, even though she's not here."
"Yeah, something like that."
Harlan grew quiet and Catalina understood that this was something that wasn't going to leave the room. "It's nice to have something like that out here."
Harlan looked at her, "So how is it? I mean being back here?"
Catalina bristled at that comment but tried to remain calm as she answered as easily as she could, "It's different."
"How? Are the two dimensions like completely other worldly?"
She sighed, this was not a topic she wanted to come up with but it seemed as though she didn't have any other choice, "It's just, when you're in the other dimension it feels quite real, though you can't touch it in this dimension. Sometimes it would seem as though this had all been a dream." She shook her head, "But if you had ended up in that dimension you would have felt everything was quite real."
"Huh…I never would have thought about any of that."
"Not many people think more than what's right in front of them."
"You can't blame people."
"I never said I did."
"Sometimes it is easier to know what's in front of you."
"And to remember." Catalina stopped and sipped some more of the hot chocolate.
Shaking her head Catalina decided that enough was enough, "I should go to bed."
"Wait! Don't go. It's…it's Christmas."
She paused in her movement to leave, "Why?"
"You're already up and you don't even look tired. Is it so bad to stay here with me for a while longer? Besides you haven't finished your hot chocolate."
"Alright fine, but we don't have to talk."
They were quiet for a few more minutes before Harlan spoke up again, "Why are you so upset?"
"Look I was just talking to you. You don't have to overreact."
"I am not overreacting."
"Really? I can tell that you want to just leave."
Cat counted to five before she spoke again, "What do you want to talk about?"
"I don't know. Maybe why you're getting so upset about me asking in regards with the other dimension."
"I just don't understand why it's so important to know about it."
"I'm curious, is that such a bad thing?"
"Grozit why don't you ask what you really want to know?"
"What? What do I really want to know?"
He looked completely confused, "Suzee?"
"Yes, Suzee. You want to know how she is. What she's doing…when she might be back." She stopped as she noticed Harlan grinning, "What is so funny Harlan?"
"At the moment you are."
Catalina set her cup down on the table and began to stand up. Harlan grabbed her wrist and stopped her from moving further, "What a minute, don't leave."
"Look, Suzee is not here anymore alright. I can't change that. I'm sorry that you have to have me around now instead of Suzee."
"Wait…just wait a minute. You think I want Suzee here?"
This time Catalina couldn't help but roll her eyes, "You don't have to pretend. Suzee and I tell each other everything."
"Really? Like what?"
"I know you kissed her. And I'm sorry that I can't fix it so that she's here and not me."
Harlan pursed his lips together for a minute and then shook his head, "Oh, that."
"Kissing people doesn't always mean something."
"But it does if you like them."
"Why do you think I like Suzee?"
"You kissed her and…just now you asked about her."
"I did kiss her, but…look Cat it's not something I have to explain, it just happened."
"Fine. Just…let me go."
But instead of loosening his grip on her wrist he pulled her towards where she had been sitting, "Come on. I just, I don't want to spend now talking about Suzee."
Catalina still refused to sit down and so Harlan placed his cup down and stood up still holding her wrist, "I'm not going to be a replacement Harlan."
"Look when you were gone…there just wasn't anything to do. We hadn't exactly gotten anywhere, things happen. Suzee…I liked Suzee, but not like I like you."
Catalina stared at him in shock; she was not expecting him to say that, "Before you asked about Suzee?"
"I wasn't sure if we were alone."
"Oh." Catalina didn't know what to say about that. She was completely confused now. Did Harlan mean that he truly liked her and not Suzee? And if that was the case he just replaced her without much thought.
"What are you thinking so hard about?"
"I just…do you like us both?"
"I like you. I liked you before alright?"
"Before we switched?"
"Yes. And if I'm not mistaken you felt the same for me?"
Of course he would say that, she had almost forgotten how big his ego was. But he was right, she liked him then and she still liked him now. That didn't mean she had to tell him that, it would only cause his ego to grow, "Aren't you full of yourself? Not everyone has feelings for you Harlan."
"I'm not talking about everyone. I'm talking about you? Come on it's Christmas."
"You're sharing the holiday currently."
She rolled her eyes and started to look away when she felt his hand on her cheek. Surprised she looked up at him; he was looking back at her with a smile.
After another moment Harlan leaned down and the two kissed. She had a moment of shock before kissing him back. As they pulled away Catalina raised her eyebrow at him unsure of what to say or even do.
"So I suppose that was for fun?"
She sighed, "You said 'kissing people doesn't always mean something.'"
"I did." He pulled her closer to him, "That's not the case with you."
And then he let her go and turned around. Perhaps she had been reading things wrong; he kissed her because he wanted to. She smiled, "You say Merry Christmas right?"
Turning back towards her he nodded, "Yes."
"And you give gifts?"
She loved that he looked confused, "Good. Merry Christmas Harlan. Since I don't have an actually gift to give you…" She trailed off as she leaned up and kissed him on the lips. This time the kiss didn't end as soon as the other did, it deepened and the two found themselves pulling away in need of air.
He smiled at her, "Nice Christmas present."
She grinned back, "Christmas sounds like a fun holiday."
Shrugging he agreed, "It has its plusses."
And the two once more shared another kiss. Catalina found that for the first time she felt completely right, and of course it was with Harlan when that happened. As they shared another kiss Catalina decided that Christmas was a great holiday to celebrate and that perhaps she would do so again.