Merry Christmas, everyone! I officially started my Christmas break today, and I decided to celebrate by sharing this cute little one-shot that I came up with a little while ago. So kick back, grab some hot chocolate, and cuddle up with a blankets )unless you live where it's warm). Either way, I hope this story puts you in a festive mood :)
"Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way..." Helga sang as she skipped down the snow-covered sidewalks of Hillwood. She was on her way to Arnold's house for Christmas Eve, and to her Christmas was just about perfect this year; she and Arnold had started officially dating two months ago after finding his parents in San Lorenzo over the summer. September had been full of awkward conversations and embarrassing admissions, but in October at the school's Halloween dance Arnold had asked Helga to dance, leading to him asking her out to get ice cream the following day.
Fast forward two months and things were going absolutely perfectly; Helga and Arnold's relationship was strong, and on this joyful evening Helga was joining the Sunset Arms family to celebrate Christmas Eve. She wished she could be there for Christmas Day too, but Arnold had insisted that she spend Christmas with her family.
"Even if you don't always get along, they're still your family, and they love you," he had said.
Helga smiled at the memory. 'Oh Arnold, my adorable, football-headed boyfriend, always looking for the good in everything' she thought.
Shortly she arrived at the boarding house and rang the doorbell, balancing her gifts in her other hand.
"Helga! You're here!" Arnold said happily, opening the door.
"Hi Arnold! Merry Christmas."
"Merry Christmas, Helga. Let me help you with all of those; did you buy the whole mall?" Arnold joked, reaching for some of the packages.
"Hold on," Helga set down her presents on the table by the door, "You didn't think I was going to let you bring all this stuff in before I hugged you, did you?"
"No, I didn't, but I figured I'd offer," Arnold grinned. Helga pulled him into a big hug, basking in the feel of his arms around her.
"By the way, cute sweater, Arnold. Are you Santa's helper this year?" Helga joked as she gather the gifts back up, referring to Arnold's Christmas sweater. It was red with green cuffs and collar and a green Christmas tree on the front decorated with little beads to look like ornaments.
"Just a little Christmas cheer. I see you've got your own Christmas outfit as well; red looks nice on you, Helga."
Helga blushed a little and looked down at her dress. It looked just like all her others, but it was red instead of pink and it had a little Christmas tree pin on the left side.
"Just being festive," Helga smiled. She and Arnold set the presents under the tree and said hello to everyone before Stella appeared in the doorway carrying a small cardboard box.
"Oh hello, Helga! You're just in time! I finally found the right box, everyone!"
Stella set the box down and lifted the lid. Inside were Santa hats, each embroidered with a different person's name. Helga watched as everyone put on their hat and smiled.
"Here, Helga, this is for you," Stella said, handing Helga a hat. Helga looked down at the hat that read "Helga" in green glittery thread across the white band.
"Really? For me?" she asked.
"Of course, Helga. You're part of the family," Miles said, coming to stand next to Stella. Helga gently touched her name with a finger before putting in on and turning to Arnold.
"What do you think?" she asked.
"Perfect," Arnold said.
"Thanks Miles, thanks Stella!"
"Oh you're welcome, Helga," Stella smiled.
"Time for Christmas carols!" Phil said as Gertie began playing the piano.
Everyone gathered around the piano and sang carol after carol. The whole time Helga couldn't help but feel blessed. 'This is it. This is what Christmas is supposed to be like. I'm so lucky that Arnold and his family have brought me into their family. They really do feel like family; I know I can go to any of them for anything, which is more than I can say for my real family. I think this is going to be the best Christmas ever' she thought.
A while later everyone sat around the fireplace to open gifts. Since Helga would be with her own family tomorrow she was exchanging gifts with Arnold's family today.
Arnold and Helga sat on the floor next to the tree and passed around gifts. Helga had got Miles and Stella a photo album, Ernie a book on the history of explosives, Oscar and Suzie some homemade cookies, and Mr. Hyunh tickets for he and his daughter to go to a play they both wanted to see. And last, but not least, was Arnold's gift; Helga had had a wonderful time finding the most perfect gift she could for Arnold. When he unwrapped it he couldn't believe his eyes.
"Helga, is this...is this what I think it is?" he asked.
"It is, Arnold. That is the security tape of my confession. The quality isn't great, but it's all there."
"Helga, I love it! I love it so much!" Arnold hugged her tightly.
"Okay, now open your gifts!"
Helga smiled and looked at the presents in front of her. She had received a gift from everyone in the boarding house, much to her surprise.
Miles and Stella got her a collection of famous poetry, and Ernie got her a pink hard-hat with "Helga is the boss" printed on the front for her to use when building her many shrines (he didn't know what she built, only that she enjoyed building things). Suzie and Oscar got her a new scarf, mittens, and hat set, and Mr. Hyunh got her a book of pranks.
Helga had saved Arnold's gift for last, knowing it would be extra special. Gently she unwrapped the box and lifted the lid. Inside was a smaller present and a tape.
"Arnold, first of all two gifts? Second, don't tell me we both thought of the security tape thing!" Helga giggled.
"No, it's not the same tape. My grandparents videotaped the school play we did last year," Arnold leaned over and whispered in her ear, "And our first kiss."
Helga blushed and gave Arnold a playful shove.
"Football Head! What am I going to do with you?" Arnold gave her a look that clearly said he had an idea, and since his back was to the rest of his family only Helga saw it. She blushed again and moved on to the smaller gift in the box. It was a small, pink satin box with a charm bracelet inside, each charm a different colored glass teardrop. A little card was taped to the inside of the cover.
You fill my world with color.
"Arnold! You are so sweet! I love it! Here, will you help me put it on?"
Arnold clipped the bracelet around Helga's wrist. Miles and Stella smiled at each other at the adorable scene before them.
Soon everyone agreed that it was getting late, and the adults all left to start cleaning up, leaving Helga and Arnold alone by the fire.
"Oh, I didn't say anything before, but look up," Phil chuckled on his way out the door. Arnold and Helga both glanced up and blushed; they were sitting directly under the mistletoe.
"Leave it to Grandpa," Arnold chuckled, trying to dispel some of the awkwardness that had descended.
"Yeah, that's Phil for you," Helga agreed.
Arnold slid a little closer to Helga. Helga slid a little closer to Arnold. Arnold slid a little closer and put his hand on hers where it sat on the carpet. Both kids glanced at each other from the corner of their eyes. They smiled and shyly leaned in, meeting in the middle in a quick kiss.
"So, uh...that was..." Helga began.
"Yeah," Arnold agreed.
"You know, that was...our, uh, our first official kiss...as a couple," Helga said.
"Yeah. It was...nice," Arnold said.
"Yeah, it was. Thank you, Arnold."
"You're welcome. Thank you Helga."
"You're welcome, Arnold."
They sat together for a little while longer, enjoying the fire together and cuddled up just a bit. Eventually Helga admitted that she should go home, and Arnold decided that he wanted to walk her there.
Once they got to Helga's house they shared another kiss goodnight before Arnold handed her something. He walked away waving, leaving Helga with her little gift still cupped in her mittens. She waved goodbye and looked down at what Arnold had given her. It was the mistletoe they had kissed under.
Helga smiled and ran upstairs to her room where she tucked the mistletoe in her latest little pink book, which she then put under her pillow.
She changed into her pajamas, but just as she was putting them in her hamper she noticed a note tucked in the pocket of her jumper. She pulled it out and crawled under her blankets before unfolding it.
To my Helga,
Tonight was the best Christmas Eve ever. I hope you had fun as well,
and I hope your Christmas Day will be just as wonderful.
Thank you for sharing that kiss under the mistletoe with me,
and thank you for being my first kiss. Sweet Dreams my love.
From your Arnold,
who loves you very much
Helga smiled and re-read the note before slipping it under her pillow and falling asleep.
The next morning she was happily surprised by her family; Miriam made pancakes, and only burned two, Bob didn't turn on the TV at all, and Olga was slightly less over the top then she usually was. Best of all they each got her gifts she had actually hoped for.
It truly was a Merry Christmas.
I hope you all enjoyed that! Happy Holidays!