Pairing: Mulder and Scully and William
Spoilers: Is there really anything left to spoil?
Summary: William's first Christmas at the Unremarkable House.
Disclaimer: I own nothing
Notes: Written for Little Grey Girl for 2013 xf_santa. This story is set in the post IWTB setting I used for my story, Reclamation, which was written for the XF Big Bang Challenge a few years ago. Thanks to my sister, Naomi, for her quick, good, hard beta and for providing the title.
William walked slowly from the kitchen, carrying a large mug full of steaming hot chocolate. He set it carefully on a coaster on the coffee table, then moved around the room, turning off all the lights except the Christmas lights strung on the tree and around the room.
He then took up the large body pillow and plopped it on the floor in front of the hearth. He wrapped himself in a fuzzy blanket from the armchair and sat cross-legged on the pillow, taking up his cocoa.
Mulder and Scully, snuggled under their own warm blanket, side by side on the couch, watched him in bemusement.
“Why’d you turn off all the lights, Will?” Mulder asked.
The boy smiled at his parents.
“I used to do this at home…in Wyoming,” he said. “I would sit in the dark in the living room and just stare at the tree, looking at how the lights are reflected in the ornaments, the way the colored lights look in the dark.” He shrugged and looked around the room. “I guess it’s a little silly.”
“No, not at all,” Scully said gently. “What other traditions did you have with…the Van de Kamps?”
William sipped his cocoa for a moment, staring into the glowing tree.
“We hung our stockings on the mantel,” he began, pointing to the three stockings hanging above the fireplace. “And even though I haven’t believed in Santa for a long time, we always put out a plate of cookies and a glass of milk for Santa.”
“What do you mean, you don’t believe in Santa?” Mulder asked in feigned shock.
William giggled a little and took another sip. He licked chocolate from his lips.
“We sang carols and silly Christmas songs,” he continued.
“What was your favorite song?” Scully asked.
“I like a lot of them,” he said, looking into the fireplace. “The First Nowell, Sing We Now of Christmas—I sang that one at church in children’s choir.”
“Can you sing it for us now?” Scully asked hopefully.
“Um, I guess,” he replied. He cleared his throat and began the carol in a clear, even soprano.
“Sing we now of Christmas, sing we now Noel…”
He continued with the carol, keeping his eyes shyly turned toward the tree.
When he finished, Mulder and Scully clapped, smiling warmly.
“That was really good, Will,” Mulder commented. “You definitely did not inherit your voice from me.”
“Now Mulder,” Scully objected. “I’ve heard you sing—you’ve got a decent voice.” She patted his knee beneath their blanket.
“Decent?” he replied. “Only decent?”
“Well…” Scully cocked an eyebrow at him, fighting to suppress a smirk.
“Can we sing something together?” William asked hopefully.
“Sure!” Scully answered.
“Oh, I don’t know…” Mulder objected. “I don’t know if you want to hear me sing.”
“I do!” William said eagerly. “Please!”
“What would you like to sing, honey?” Scully asked, giving Mulder a nudge with her elbow.
They had only had William in their home for a couple of months and she wanted to make him feel more and more at home. She hoped to ease the loss of his adoptive parents and the complete upheaval in his life and hoped that creating happy memories of their first Christmas memories together would move them all forward.
“Can we sing Santa Claus is Coming to Town?” he asked with a toothy grin.
“Do you know the words?” Mulder asked. “Because it’s been a long time since I’ve sung Christmas songs.”
“Sure!” William said, suddenly more animated.
“You better watch out, you better not pout…” he began, Scully joining in eagerly while Mulder kept up better than he let on.
They got through the song, laughing at Mulder stumbling over the lyrics, but William keeping them all in key and in tempo.
“That was fun,” Mulder conceded as the finished.
“I really like that one from the Rudolph movie,” William continued.
“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer?” Scully asked.
“Well, I like that one, but I mean ‘Have a Holly Jolly Christmas’” he said. “Can we sing that one?”
“Oh, I like that one, too,” Scully said. “Let’s do it.”
“Have a Holly Jolly Christmas, it’s the best time of the year.
I don’t know if there’ll be snow, but have a cup of cheer.
Have a Holly Jolly Christmas, and when you walk down the street,
Say hello to friends you know, and everyone you meet.
Oh, ho, the mistletoe, hung were you can see
Somebody waits for you, kiss her once for me!”
Mulder interrupted the song to take Scully into an exaggerated smooch.
William laughed and covered his eyes. “You guys!”
He started singing again.
“Have a Holly Jolly Christmas and in case you didn’t hear,
Oh, by golly, have a Holly Jolly Christmas, this year!”
They collapsed in laughter at the end, Mulder and Scully hugging on the couch and William wrapping his blanket more tightly around himself.
William suddenly became very quiet and stared at his biological parents, cuddled together under their blanket.
“Can I come and sit with you?” he asked, his voice suddenly full of quiet emotion.
Scully’s smile slipped a little, but she quickly lifted one end of the blanket and said, “Of course, honey. Come sit here between us.”
He scrambled up from the floor and squeezed in between them, snuggling down into the couch cushions.
Scully took his hand and Mulder put his arms around both of them and they simply sat quietly on the couch for a moment, listening to the crackle of the fire, looking at the sparkling lights on the tree.
“Silent night, Holy night…” William began.
“All is calm, all is bright,” Mulder continued, surprising all of them.
“Round yon virgin mother and child,” Scully continued.
“Holy infant, so tender and mild,” William sang, his voice cracking a bit.
“Sleep in heavenly peace,” they sang together. “Sleep in heavenly peace.”