AN: In 2014 I wrote A Spirky Christmas Carol and to this day it remains my favorite Christmas story I have written. It makes me cry and I read it every year. No doubt because of my absolute love of the original story (favorite book).

So even though it’s been six years, I couldn’t help visiting these two all these years later. And the first one was rather melancholy, so I used that same sort of theme here.

Spock was not cheerful on his best days, Jim knew. He had never known his boyfriend to break into a smile or laugh or anything like that.

He was sweet and kind and a very generous lover, but he was serious, reserved and withheld most emotions from easily being viewed, even by Jim.

For the first few months after they’d gotten together over last Christmas, they’d maintained separate residences. Spock almost never left Jim’s apartment, though, and when he had, they’d both been miserable over it.

One day Spock said they should just live together and Jim agreed.

But when Jim had brought home a Christmas in July item to decorate the apartment, though Spock had tried to hide his displeasure fast enough, Jim had seen it.

It was difficult, that day, for Spock. Jim knew that. Spock’s mom had died on Christmas Eve years before and the whole thing had nothing but unpleasant memories for him. Jim too, really. His father-in-law had been an absolute beast.

But Spock had come at Christmas to be with Jim, after Jim was sure that Spock didn’t care for him at all, and so, when he’d seen the silly bit of decorations in the store, Jim, probably stupidly, got them and brought them home.

“Jim.” Spock eyed them with distaste, unmistakable.   

In the months they had been together, they almost never argued. Mostly because when Spock felt like it, he opened his mouth, closed it, and then said he would meditate, and then everything was fine after that.

But now Jim could see he was struggling.

“It’s, uh, Christmas in July.”

Those dark eyes left the silliness and strayed over to survey Jim. He could read absolutely nothing there. Even the distaste was carefully hidden. And yet, somehow, the blankness, utter and complete, was almost worst.

“You hate them.”

“Yes,” Spock said, simply, precise.  “They are ugly and completely without merit.”

“I…”

“What a waste of resources. I cannot fathom why you bought them.”

And then he turned and walked away from Jim without another word.

The thing was, Spock had ceased to sound like Spock, but now sounded like Frank.

“What a waste of resources.”

“Christmas is stupid. You’re such a baby for even wanting it. Stop crying.”

Jim shook his head, trying to remove himself from the past and the demons from those days, but tears stung his eyes as he stared down at the decorations he’d bought.

Just a few glasses with sand and shells and Christmas ornaments. Jim had thought they looked cute and festive. Now he felt like such an idiot.

He hadn’t felt like that since he’d foolishly asked Spock to spend Christmas Eve with him.

“I’ll never learn,” he whispered to himself.

He found the shopping bag from the store, packed up the items, and left the apartment without bothering to tell Spock he was going anywhere.

After returning the items to the store, he didn’t feel like going back to the apartment he shared with Spock. He wandered for a while until he found a little diner several blocks away. He went inside and ordered coffee and pancakes.

Pancakes had always been a comfort food for him. So when he got them, he heaped them with butter and syrup. As much as he could stand.

When he was done with them, he ordered more.

He got a text from Spock on his communication device then.

Where?

That was it. Nothing else.

He absolutely considered not replying but his communicator could be tracked anyway.

Dalton’s

He had never been there with Spock, but he figured Spock would figure it out if he wanted to.

He was half way through the second plate of pancakes when Spock arrived. He didn’t look up when the Vulcan slid into the booth across from him.

Instead he said, “When I was thirteen I was sent to Tarsus IV to begin a new life.”

“Jim…”

“I was deemed worthy of living when some many others I knew were not. When I’m upset and stressed I can either eat three plates of pancakes or go three days without touching food.”

“Ashaya, I am sorry.”

Jim finally raised his gaze to Spock’s. “I’ve lived with abuse, Spock. Physical, yeah, but verbal, too. And I don’t want to live like that again.”

Spock swallowed. His dark eyes looked anything but blank. “My mother’s birthday was in July. That is no excuse for how I behaved and I acknowledge that. I love you. You are the only one who keeps me grounded. If I have lost you…”

Jim sighed. “You haven’t. No. I love you, too, Spock. But you-you can’t just shut me out. You could have told me about your mother’s birthday. I would have understood that it makes it harder for you with the Christmas theme. It’s just, all my life I’ve tried to be normal, like normal things and…”

Spock took his hand. “Jim. Please. My behavior was illogical and uncalled for. I sometimes forget I am not alone any longer and that I have you and all experiences are new again.”

There went the tears again. Jim rolled his eyes at himself.

“That goes double for me. I’m sorry. I don’t think of you as an abuser.”

“I am gratified. And when you are done eating, will you return to our apartment with me?”

“Yes. Of course I will.”

When they walked back to their apartment together, not hand in hand, as even months later, Spock was far too Vulcan to attempt that, but he walked very close to Jim, and that was enough.

When they got inside, Jim saw on their coffee table the three glasses with the Christmas in July decorations placed there.

Eyes wide he looked to Spock.

“How did you…?”

“I knew where they were from. I saw them too. And I knew you took them back. You are welcome to have whatever decorations in our home you wish, Jim. Always.”

Jim went into his arms and smiled wide when Spock produced a sprig of mistletoe over their heads.