August 30, 2012 – National Maple Syrup Day

Summary: **Part of the 2012 LiveJournal's Twisted Shorts August Fic-A-Day** series, also known as the 'Wacky Holiday Series'. Sam learns that not all middle-to-upper class girls are snobs.

Challenge: for the livejournal 2012 August Fic-a-Day Challenge.

Warning: not a one!

Timeline: pre-series for BtVS; 1st season for WtB?, but change the dates so they line up.

A/N: Here's a Celia story with no mention of her being sick – either directly or indirectly.

Disclaimer: BtVS/AtS characters belong to Joss Whedon/Mutant Enemy. Who's the Boss? characters belong to Martin Cohan, Blake Hunter, Columbia Pictures Television and Sony Pictures Television. I claim no rights to any copyrighted material. Please do not copy or take this story without my permission.

Fairfield, Connecticut

Dec 17th

"What are we doing here, Dad?" young Samantha Micelli complained to her father in her distinct Brooklyn accent. "We could be watching a hockey game right now."

"Part of the reason I took this job was to introduce you to cultural things, Sam," Tony explained. It wasn't that he hated the old neighborhood or anything – most of the people there were the greatest folks you could ever hope to find – but he wanted more for his daughter than living paycheck to paycheck…or worse, living on welfare.

"Maple syrup is cultural?" Sam scoffed in disbelief.

Okay, so she had a point, but he wasn't giving up so easy.

"It is around here," he retorted. The fact they had a festival this big for it proved that. "Plus they have some pretty interesting booths; I bet I can find a whole stack of recipes that Angela, Mona and Jonathan would like. Why don't you head to that one for ice cream and if they have a recipe, grab me one, okay?" Tony requested. Letting her visit a booth by herself would give him a chance to hit the bathroom.

As she tasted the Maple Nut ice cream, Sam started to revise her opinion of the festival a little. She still thought it was lame overall, but this stuff was good. She overheard a couple girls her age talking a few feet away.

"I never knew there were so many ways to use maple syrup, Celia," one girl said. "I thought it was just for pancakes and waffles and stuff like that."

"What I don't understand is why is it in December, Buffy?" the girl named Celia questioned. "That one booth that showed how it was made said nothing about doing it in December. Shouldn't it be celebrated when it's made?"

Buffy just shrugged. "I don't know…maybe they figure they'd be too busy making it then to celebrate or something."

"Maybe…" Celia trailed off uncertainly. She saw Sam standing there and said hi. "Have you been to one of these festivals before?"

Sam swallowed her last bite and answered, "Nope. Me and Dad just moved here a couple months ago for his job." She hoped they wouldn't ask what job. On the one hand, she knew it was honest work and nothing to be ashamed of, but on the other hand, she knew a lot of people looked down on a man being a housekeeper. And these two girls kind of looked like those rich girls who were so snotty to her at school.

"Poor you," both girls said in unison.

When Sam asked why, Celia explained, "We came here with our parents for some kind of holiday convention thing and all the girls we've met so far are too busy being 'proper little girls' that they don't want to have fun with us."

"You're lucky you don't have to go to school with them," Sam commiserated, forgetting her earlier concerns. "If you aren't a member of a country club or something equally snooty, they think you're something they stepped in."

"I hope I never get to be like that," Celia vowed earnestly. Both Sam and Buffy agreed just as vehemently.

Tony walked up then, smiling when he saw Sam talking to a couple girls her age. "Hey, Sam. Who are your two friends?"

She rolled her eyes at his blatant Dad behavior. Buffy and Celia fought the urge to giggle at the familiar father/daughter interaction; their dads were the same way. "Uhh, actually we haven't-"

Buffy cut in, holding out her hand in greeting, "Hello, I'm Buffy Summers; this is my cousin Celia Markham."

Tony and Sam shook their hands and he handled the introductions for them, "I'm Tony Micelli and you've sort of met my daughter, Samantha."

"Sam," said daughter quickly corrected.

"Nice to meet you, sir," the cousins chimed in unison.

"That's a little weird how you keep doing that," Sam remarked.

"Like we said before, we've been doing the business party stuff for a while. The old people think it's cute when we act like twins," Buffy said, rolling her eyes.

Tony felt a little offended at the 'old people' comment, but then he realized that she was right…he had thought it was cute until Sam said it was weird.

"Oh, Dad! You have to take the recipe for this ice cream," Sam almost yelled, abruptly changing the subject. "Angela might get me a bike as a thank you when she tries it!"

"Which you won't accept," Tony chided. "I don't want you to get stuff that way." It was mostly a matter of pride for him. If Sam got a bike, he wanted to buy it for her.

"Who's Angela? His girlfriend or something?" Celia asked, curiosity winning out over the manners her parents drilled into her.

Tony either didn't see or didn't pay attention to Sam's frantic look when he replied, "She's my boss. I'm the housekeeper for Angela Bower."

Buffy saw the almost depressed expression on Sam's face now that her father's secret was out, thought for a moment, then said off-handedly, "That's like another way of saying butler, isn't it? You don't have to wear a goofy uniform, do you?" she asked, wrinkling her nose at the thought. Most of the butlers she had seen were less muscle-y than Mr. Micelli.

"Only when Angela has a formal dinner at her house," Tony answered. It was clear that he was relieved a butler's uniform wasn't required all the time.

"You know, I never understood the fancy uniform thing for people whose job it is to clean," Celia commented. "Wouldn't it make more sense to wear things you don't mind getting dirty? If it were up to me, I'd make the uniform sweats and a t-shirt," she declared adamantly.

Sam just kept looking between Buffy and Celia in amazement. It seemed like they were kind of in the Bowers' social circle, but they sounded more like they could be from Brooklyn…minus the accents, of course. They honestly didn't appear to care that her dad had a 'woman's' job. Maybe there would be more kids like them once she got to know them better.

"Wanna come to the maple syrup suckers booth with us?" she asked her new friends.

A/N: I couldn't decide on a place to end, but that little moment of reflection for Sam felt good to me.