In Which Carter Is Kissed Under The Mistletoe

Carter sighed and leaned against the bar.

"Long day?" The voice made her jump.

"Oh, hey, Fusco. Yeah. Even after all these years it doesn't seem right for these sorts of things to happen on Christmas Eve."

"Something for our suited friend?" Fusco asked in a low voice, since they were surrounded by cops in the pub.

"No, just your common homicide. No suit or glasses anywhere to be seen."

"Well, at least you had time to come to the Christmas party."

Carter snorted. "Some party. Cops getting drunk. Why aren't you with your kid, Fusco?"

"He's at his mom's. That's the arrangement. Christmas Eve with her, Christmas with me. What about yours?"

"Another arrangement. On Christmas Eve he goes to his best friend's house for church and a party."

Fusco stared at her. "Your kid goes to church?"

She raised her shoulders. "Yeah. He likes it. I'm just glad it's that and not a gang."

"You got that right."

Carter glanced at her watch. "I better get going so I can finish wrapping his presents. Homicide investigations sort of interrupted." She shrugged on her coat.

"Hey, Carter?"

"Yeah?"

Fusco leaned close to her and kissed her gently. She stared at him in a certain amount of shock and outrage.

"Fusco…"

He pointed at the ceiling. "You shouldn't stand under the mistletoe, Carter."

She looked up at the plastic greenery tacked into the ceiling and groaned.

"Merry Christmas, Carter."

She only glared at him and fought her way through the heat and the crowd and out into the gently falling snow and cold. It was refreshing. After a moment she shook her head with a rueful grin and laughed.

"Merry Christmas, Fusco."


Disclaimer: No romance was implied in the writing of this story.