Mouri Ran leaned back as she sat on an armchair in the Kudou library. A cup of steaming tea was placed to her left on a nearby coffee table. She was satisfied, having just enjoyed a delicious meal prepared by her recently returned childhood friend/love interest.

The aforementioned love interest was clearing up in the kitchen. Off in the distance, he could hear Ran's contented sighs and the clink of a teacup against a saucer.

Perfect, Kudou Shinichi thought as he rinsed a plate. It's finally time to ask her. Gulping, he deposited the plate into the top of the dishwasher and wiped off his hands.

Shinichi strolled down the hall leading from the kitchen to the library, his back tense, his fingers shaking.

Ran rose when Shinichi pushed open the door to the library. "Ah, Shinichi. Are you finally going to tell me why you invited me over to your house for dinner today?"

Ran was slightly startled when she noticed how Shinichi was shaking as he nodded. "Yes, I'm... I'll tell you."

She was further surprised when he walked closer, picking up her delicate hands in his. Ran found the smoothness of his fingertips somehow distracting and almost missed his next words, which were half-whispered into her ear.

"There's something I want for Christmas this year from you."

Jerking, Ran realized how close he was. Her heart began hammering in her chest.

"Sh... Shinichi?" she stammered, silenced when his right hand slipped out of hers and relocated to her lips.

"Shh," soothed Shinichi, and Ran suddenly found that she couldn't speak. "Let me finish, Ran."

Her face was flaming as Shinichi removed his hand, smiling softly as he re-entwined their hands together.

"It's something I've been after for a long time," Shinichi continued, and Ran's face went even redder as she realized how soft his voice suddenly was sounding. "And you're the only one who can give it to me."

The implications screaming in her mind, Ran swallowed, her throat dry. This... this is the moment I've been waiting for my entire life. He's... he's going to finally confess!

"All I want for Christmas..."

Ran held her breath, waiting for it.

"Is..."

She felt his fingers tighten around hers.

"Is..."

Her heartbeat quickened.

"Is... a first edition of The Sign of Four! In the original English!"

"WHAT?!" Ran shrieked, dropping his hands and jerking her head up to stare in open-mouthed shock at Shinichi.

Shinichi was grinning wildly. "I saw it on Amazon the other day! I already asked Haibara, and the professor, and my parents, and Hattori, but none of them wanted to get it for me, since they thought it would 'feed my obsession.' But you, you'd understand, right, Ran? You know how I've always wanted a first edition of The Sign of Four. It's my favorite Holmes book." He smiled widely. "So can I count on you to get it for me?"

When Hattori Heiji arrived at the Kudou mansion for his Christmas stay, he was surprised when the door was answered by a sullen Kudou Shinichi, who held an ice pack to a very red cheek.

"Dear God, what happened ta ya, Kudou?" he exclaimed.

Shifting the ice pack, Shinichi answered, "I asked Ran to get me The Sign of Four last night."

Eyeing the extreme redness in his cheek, Hattori remarked tentatively, "I'm guessin' that didn't go well, hmm, Kudou?"

"You can say that again."

As the fellow detective turned around, Hattori suddenly asked on an impulse, "Did ya hold her hands and look deeply inta her eyes while ya were askin'?"

Shinichi turned and blinked at the tanned Osakan. "Yes. How'd you know?"

Hattori shook his head, slowly and somewhat incredulously. "Oh, I don't know."


Hopefully you liked the little Christmas drabble. See you soon! ~V. Tsai