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Free Fiction: Advent, Day Sixteen

December 19, 2010

(I must apologize for the tardiness of this piece and the pieces that will follow today. The last three days have been hell as I wrapped up the last loose ends of the apartment I just moved out of. But! I am playing catch up today, and I hope you enjoy what I have to offer!)

Title: Christmas Hope
Characters: Alex, Ranae
Spoilers: Of the Shadow World: Dominance (WIP)
Word count: 589
Rating: G


Ranae frowned at the small tree Alex had procured. It seemed strange in their modern, minimalist apartment, but Alex was proud of it. Ranae shifted on the sofa, enjoying the sensual slide of his silk pajama bottoms, and regarded Alex thoughtfully.

“You had to bring in a dying tree to celebrate the birth of a man who said he was the son of god?” Ranae asked, that edge of annoyed sarcasm in his voice.

Alex turned and glared at him. “It’s not about Jesus and God and all that. It’s about Christmas. Twinkling lights, glittering ornaments, a star on top of the tree.”

“Christmas is about a dying tree wrapped in glass and electricity, then?”

“You’re trying to bait me. It won’t work.” Alex picked up the string of LED lights and began to string them around and around the four foot pine tree. “Christmas is a happy time. It’s about loving and giving and caring, Ranae. You should try it some time.”

All right, Ranae thought, that one hurt. He did love Alex. He gave to him. He cared. His bright eyes followed every one of Alex’s movements as his lover danced around the tree, humming some silly, cheerful Christmas carol. Ranae wanted to say something mocking, but the words wouldn’t pass his lips. Alex was happy.

Why would he want to steal that happiness away?

Because you’re a monster, a little voice whispered in Ranae’s head. You never were human. You never had a mother and father who loved you, cared for you, showed you these little traditions. Your mother and father are demons in a world without color, and they would shun such brightness. Their family traditions had been all about hunting and feasting on the emotions of the humans who flittered too close to their webs.

Their family hadn’t been about love.

But he loved Trela. Ranae might be the youngest, but Trela was the one he looked after. Doted on. Trela made him laugh and smile. It was Trela he danced for sometimes.

As Ranae watched Alex string silver garland around and around the tree, he realized Trela would love Christmas. He wet his lips as he forced the unusual words past his tongue. “Maybe we could invite Trela and Brice? For Christmas?”

Alex turned and smiled at Ranae. “I think that sounds wonderful. Trela would love all the colors, the shiny paper. Oh! And the stockings!” He laughed. “Can you just see Trela on Christmas morning with his stocking?”

Ranae grinned, suddenly in a much better spirit about this Christmas thing. “He’d try to put it on.” He nodded, standing up to pluck one of the hooked ornaments from their box. “Let’s invite them,” he murmured, hanging the bright red ball from a branch.

“Yes,” Alex said, hugging Ranae from behind. “It’s time for a family Christmas.”

A family Christmas.

Ranae smiled at the ornament as he leaned back into Alex’s arms.

That was just what they needed.

And, maybe, if he could convince them all to behave, his other brother could come. Maybe… maybe they didn’t have to be human to enjoy the silliness of a dying tree bedecked in fairy lights and glass balls. Maybe, for the first time in a long, long time, they could be a family for a little while.

The thought sparked hope in Ranae’s chest, an emotion he’d forgotten. It was warm and brilliant, and he held onto it as tightly as he could.

It wasn’t Alex who needed changing, Ranae finally understood.

It was them.

One Comment leave one →
  1. December 19, 2010 9:49 pm

    Aww… This one has me all teary! (and I swear, it isn’t just my hormones… >.> )

    This really gives a wonderful look inside Ranae and their family dynamic. I love Ranae being the one to have the idea to invite Trela and Brice (and perhaps the other brothers) for Christmas. Alex would be so happy to have sparked a bit of hope in Ranae, and I really like that realization that maybe Alex isn’t just foolish for clinging to some of the human customs. ^_^

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