The Twelve Gays of Christmas - A Love Story
Moonlight poured onto the earth, illuminating the snow so that it twinkled like the glittering stars above. Usually, the fumes from the city polluted the air into a cocktail of indigos but tonight it was perfectly clear. The city's street-lights had been switched off for an hour now and the citizens had gathered all across town to witness the imminent meteor shower. It was expected to be the largest for many years.
"It's so fucking cold," Lovino wrapped his arms around his waist and tried to burrow deeper into his jumper. They had been standing outside waiting for this dumb meteor shower for hours.
Roma turned to face him, his voice stern, "Watch your language young man."
Lovino rolled his eyes, it was so typical. He spent all his time doting on his precious Feliciano, but jumped on Lovino's back about every goddamn thing. He treated him as though he was still a child, "Grandpa I'm twenty-fucking-three, I can say what I want."
"You still live under my roof, and while you're under my roof you'll live by my rules."
Lovino was about to retort when Feliciano interrupted him.
"What's that one called, Grandpa?" He pointed to one of the brightest stars, its powerful glow penetrating the endless darkness.
"Ah, Feli, good question. That one is called the Blue Fairy."
"Bull-shit," Lovino coughed under his breath.
Roma issued him a stern glare before turning back to Feliciano, "Remember, Feli; if you make a wish on a star, it's sure to come true."
"Wow, really, grandpa?" Feliciano gazed up to the sky in wonder.
"Wishing on stars is for babies," Lovino grumbled, folding his arms impatiently.
"Don't listen to him, Feli, he's just jealous because he is not a believer like us," Roma winked. "The blue fairy will not grant his wish."
Lovino raised his arms in frustration, "For god's sake! Stars do not contain fairies. They are just the other suns in the galaxy."
Feliciano smiled at him, "Wow, Lovino, you're so smart."
Lovino smiled at him for a moment, giving him a brief squeeze on the arm. Unfortunately, this display of brotherly love was short lived because Feliciano began talking again. "So if stars aren't fairies, where do fairies come from?"
"For god's sake, Feliciano. Fairies don't exist."
"Lovino, you mustn't say that!" He raised a hand to his lips, "Every time you say that a fairy dies."
Instead of responding, Lovino threw his arms into the air in defeat and went to sit alone.
"Fairies do exist don't they, grandpa?" Feliciano shot a worried glance up at Roma who smiled dotingly and pulled him into a hug.
"Of course they do, Feliciano. Pay no attention to your brother; he's just miserable because I wouldn't pay for his dance classes."
"But you don't mind paying for Feliciano's singing lessons?" Lovino muttered as he overheard.
"Feliciano finishes all his chores. When you do the same I'll consider it."
Lovino stood up in indignation, "I do loads around the house! I make the breakfast; I do the sweeping and the dishes... sometimes."
Roma rolled his eyes, "Stop complaining, Lovino, you are hardly Cinderella."
"If the shoe fits," Lovino grouched in response.
Roma smiled despite himself, "Perhaps you should get a job back-chatting your grandpa, eh? Now please, Lovino, be quiet a moment, the meteor shower is about to start."
Pinpoints of light streaked across the night sky, each followed by a dark orange trail that coloured the air like a cloud of fiery smoke. Feliciano's eyes were squeezed tightly shut as he wished, "…and I'd like more singing lessons...and a new bicycle..."
"Feliciano, it's a magical wish, not a Christmas list." But Roma looked at him fondly all the same.
"...and when you send him to me, please make sure he has great, big muscles!"
"Okay, Feliciano, I think that's quite enough. Give the star some peace and quiet."
"Okay, grandpa!" Feliciano finished wistfully before turning towards Lovino. "Lovino, if you're not wishing, then why are your eyes closed."
"Aren't they beautiful?" Antonio stared up at the sky wistfully, as beams of light cut through the darkness.
"Yea, Zeus must be pissed," Gilbert replied smirking.
"You know, Gilbert, I don't think you're taking this very seriously." Antonio frowned. "You haven't even wished on one star yet."
Gilbert scoffed, taking back a swig of his beer before burping loudly, "Wishing on stars is for pussies."
"What about you Francis?"
"Honhon, mon ami, you know me. My only wish is to wake up next to a sleeping beauty… each and every morning." As if to prove his point, Francis wolf-whistled at a passing group of women, who all giggled appreciatively in response.
Antonio shook his head, "Don't either of you believe in true love?"
"Pshh, the only things I believe in are drinking beer, sausage fests and parading around in fancy leather shorts – if only to honour my heritage," Gilbert sniggered.
"Speaking of sausage fests," Francis threw back his own head in laughter, "I hear 'The Three Bears' is holding a special party for the meteor shower."
"Well I don't care where we go, so long as there's booze." Gilbert took another swig from his can, "Antonio?"
Antonio looked at them in horror, "We can't go yet. The stars have only just begun to fall; I haven't even had time to make my wish yet!"
Francis rolled his eyes in response, "Fine, fine, mon dieu, we shall stay a little longer. Hurry up and make your wishes though. I don't know about stars, but I have seen some real angels heading towards the club."
"Translation – he's only interested in beauty if he can put his dick in it," Gilbert laughed. "So unless those stars have moist craters, he's probably unwilling to try them at present."
"Gilbert, you are always so vulgar." Francis shook his head in disgust, but Gilbert just shrugged.
"It comes with the life-style."
"Ah yes, your rock-"
"Punk," Gilbert corrected him.
"Okay, your 'Punk' band. Surely you do not think that is real music." Francis wrinkled his nose in disdain, "It is just so tasteless and... so English."
Gilbert rolled his eyes, "Whereas mimes are the high-point of civilised society."
"Mock my culture all you like, at least the French do not cook and dress the way they sing," Francis sighed, tapping his foot impatiently. "Antonio, can we go yet? You must have wished on half the stars in the galaxy by now."
Antonio finished his wish, before sighing in defeat. "Fine, but if my wish isn't granted I'm blaming you guys."
"That's fine, Antonio. You may seek bloody revenge on me. Now can we please go?"
"Hey, I think I finally figured out my wish," Gilbert said laughing as they walked away. "I wish there was someone who complained more than you two."
Arthur couldn't concentrate. He had been trying to work on this bloody play all night, but his treasured peace and quiet kept being rudely interrupted by the screams of drunken party-goers and the whistle and bang of many, many fireworks. It had only gotten worse after the city had switched its lights back on. Eventually he had shut his window, cursing the world for forcing him to remove himself from the beautiful, inspiring view of London and back to his own drab apartment.
"I wish to be the hero! I wish to be the hero! I wish to be the hero! I wish to be the hero!"
Arthur's eye twitched. Noise, there was continually noise. Something, no someone was still interrupting his precious silence. Well, enough was quite enough; he wasn't having any more of it.
"Will you shut your bloody mouth? Some of us are trying to work." Arthur yelled crossly, re-opening his window.
"Dude relax, just shut your window," replied the voice, its' easy tone only serving to increase Arthur's rage.
"I tried that, but you're just too bloomin' loud!"
"Oh." The voice became suddenly sheepish, "Sorry, man I didn't mean to interrupt your work. I just wanted to make sure the star could hear me."
"Yea, it's really far away."
Arthur raised an eyebrow. "Well then, could you possibly wish upon a closer one for the time being? Or better yet, find one that can lip read."
"Nah, this is a special star I'm trying to wish on. It's the most important one."
Despite himself Arthur was rather amused, "And what pray-tell, were you wishing on this special star for? All I heard was something about being a hero, but you can't possibly mean a super-hero, can you?" Actually, from talking to this guy for two minutes, Arthur later decided that he really wouldn't have been that surprised.
"No!" The man replied indignantly. "I already tried that last year," he added glumly.
"And it didn't come true? My word."
Arthur's sarcastic tone was clearly lost on the speaker, because he continued earnestly. "Well my toe-nails grew a little faster, but that's not really what I was hoping for. That's why I'm wishing on the special star, I figure you must have to be real specific about these things."
"Clearly. So then, what type of hero are you hoping to be this year?"
The other man laughed, "Well not a hero this time, more 'the hero.' I'm an actor; I want to get the lead role in a play."
For a second Arthur was unsure what to reply. Should he tell the boy he was a playwright? The least he could do was to give him some helpful advice.
"Good luck with that. With the amount of people trying to make it, you'd probably do better wishing for a free meal." Arthur frowned, that 'helpful advice' had come out a little meaner than he had meant it to.
To his great surprise though, the young man responded with enthusiasm, "Okay, star - I've changed my mind! I wish for a free meal!"
"I was kidding…"
"Don't worry about me man, I'm American and we never give up on our dreams!"
'American,' Thought Arthur in amusement, 'well that explained a lot.'
"I'm Alfred by the way," the American continued obliviously.
"Well it's been good meeting you Arthur!" There was a silence and then a laugh, "You know I just held out my hand. I sorta forgot you were up in a window."
Arthur looked down at his own outstretched arm, and wondered whether to tell Alfred that he had just done the exact same thing. Instead he laughed quietly at himself.
There was a small silence that lingered for only a couple of moments before Alfred spoke again, "Well I'd better go in a second, my half-brother Mattie was supposed to be meeting me here. But he's got this fear of blood thingy…"
"Yea, that's the one. Anyway, he's half an hour late, so I better check he hasn't pricked his finger and passed out in a dark alley or something."
As Alfred turned to leave he stepped out into the streetlight, and for just a moment Arthur could see him clearly. His mouth fell open; this stranger was blond and really attractive. As the light from both window and lamp fell across his upturned face, bright blue eyes gleamed suddenly from behind his glasses… and Arthur saw his even white teeth briefly, as he grinned up towards the window. Something about him made Arthur's pulse pound, but he had time for little more than a swift intake of breath before Alfred walked back into the darkness. It was irrational he knew, but Arthur's heart was beating rapidly and adrenaline seared through his veins. Without thinking, he called out, "Alfred, wait! I have a question for you."
"Yea?" Alfred called back from across the street.
"Which star is it you were wishing on?"
He heard a low laugh, "The biggest one," Alfred's now dark figure lifted its hand to point. "Second star to the right and straight on till morning."
Arthur looked up at the sky searchingly, before leaning over to yell, "Thank you!"
For a brief moment he considered sitting back down to his work, but the thought was quickly replaced with the memory of that brilliant smile.
"Oh sod it," Arthur said angrily to himself, before marching back to the open window.
'I must be out of my bloody mind,' he thought as he knelt down. Looking up into the dark sky for a moment, he finally spotted the star Alfred had spoken of. In barely a whisper, he began to wish…
"Star light, star bright,
First star I see tonight;
I wish I may, I wish I might,
Have the wish I wish tonight…"
A/N: We have decided to write a story for Christmas before starting on our next long fic… and will begin posting from 29th November – one chapter every two days.
Within the larger story, each chapter will be in the form of a short - loosely based on a fairy-tale, and focussing around one pairing.
We hope you will enjoy our festive stories and join us from next week :)
EvilMidget6 and LieutenantProbable ;)