Summary: Someone is very lonely on Christmas Eve.
Word Count: 2083 (not counting the recipes)
Genre: Barely slash
Warnings: First kiss.
Blair awoke on Christmas Eve day and found himself feeling the depression already. Jim had said he was going to a Christmas function at the station and he hadn’t invited Blair. So it was going to be another lonely Christmas Eve and Christmas. He had to stop feeling sorry for himself. It was time to focus on other things.
Blair had shopped until he found a perfect book for Jim for Christmas. It was a book that he hadn’t been able to find anywhere in Cascade. Someone he knew in Seattle, found it in a small bookstore and called Blair and told him about it. So now Jim was going to be the proud owner of Urarina Society, Cosmology and History in Peruvian Amazonia by Bartholomew Dean. It had cost him seventy bucks, but it was worth it to Blair to make Jim happy. Jim was always interested in the different tribes in the Amazon. Blair had saved for it and finally got it in the mail. He had the day to himself, with Jim working, so he decided to wrap the book and put it under the so called tree.
Jim had put up a small artificial tree that was sad. It would have even made Charlie Brown sad. That’s how pathetic it was. To top it off, it had been Carolyn’s and this drove Blair insane for some reason. No, Blair wanted a new tree. One they could call their tree, but Jim wouldn’t ever listen when Blair brought it up. Jim just didn’t get it.
Getting the wrapping paper out of Jim’s closet, Blair was amazed at how organized the closet was. Blair would have had to dig for hours in his closet for wrap, but no, not in Jim’s. There was a box that said, ‘wrapping paper’ on it and Blair opened it up and took out the prettiest blue one he could find. He wanted something that would set off Jim’s eyes. Oh for crying out loud. Now you’re looking for paper to match his eyes? Get a grip, Sandburg. Blair took the one he wanted, he liked to call the blue azure, but wasn’t sure, really. He went downstairs and wrapped the beautiful book for Jim. Blair was fairly certain that Jim would love it. But he couldn’t swear to it. Sighing, Blair finished, took the paper back upstairs and put everything away just the way it had been.
Blair sat down and looked at the tree and it made him sadder as the day went on. He couldn’t stand it anymore. He had to replace that tree with a new one, and some new bulbs. He didn’t have enough for a lot of ornaments, so he would make some things to hang on the tree. Jim wasn’t going to be home until late anyhow.
Once the new little artificial tree was up, saving a real tree from death, Blair sat back and looked to see how much Jim was going to hate it. First of all, it was green. The other one was silver. Blair hated how cold the silver one looked. Blair liked to believe that was Carolyn’s choice, not Jim’s. And what if Jim had picked it out? What then, you sappy romantic?
Blair had placed a bunch of homemade ornaments, candy canes, gingerbread cookies and ribbon on the tree along with some he had bought at a used store on the way home. When he was done, it was time to start dinner.
Blair made a nice dinner, just in case Jim would be home. With your luck, he’ll bring a date. He really didn’t want to eat alone, so he kept it warm in the oven hoping that Jim would be home soon. Blair glanced at his watch and saw that it was 9:30 at night. No wonder he was starving. He was going to give Jim another hour and then he was eating alone, even if it killed him.
Jim got done with the stakeout and was never so glad to get out of that van. He had been stuck in there waiting for his turn to walk the mall. He climbed into his truck for the ride home and thought about stopping at Wonderburger, but knew it was too late. They had all been undercover at the mall trying to find the Christmas Bandit that was taking wallets and billfolds. They finally got him. Jim had felt the touch to his backside and knew this guy had been really good, because he had his senses turned all the way up and just barely felt the tug of his wallet. Jim grabbed him and slapped the cuffs on him so fast; his head would be spinning for a week.
Now Jim couldn’t wait to get home. He hoped that Sandburg would have dinner made, but it was Christmas Eve and he doubted that Blair was home all alone, making dinner for him.
As Jim drove, he listened to the Christmas carols and remembered that he had a present in his closet for Blair. He had to be sure and put it under the tree. He got him a wonderful book on anthropology. Blair was going to love it. Jim knew this for a fact. He had seen Blair look at it at the store, but it was too expensive and Blair had set it back. All Jim had to do was go back and get it the next day. He had taken it home and wrapped it in this gorgeous blue gift wrap, that almost matched Blair’s eyes. What are you nuts? You’re now trying to color coordinate gifts and Blair’s eyes?
Jim sighed and hurried home. If nothing else he could have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. He wondered what Blair was doing that very moment and with whom. I’d rather not know.
Blair glanced out the balcony door and saw Jim pull into the parking lot. His mood got better immediately. He rushed to the cupboards and got dishes, glasses, silverware and placemats and set the table as nicely as he could. He had made Jim’s favorite dinner and that was a delicious leg of lamb. Blair had gotten the ingredients and the recipes from the store. He hoped he had done a good job on them. The potatoes were Greek potatoes, lightly covered with olive oil and coated with lemon. The skins were still on the potatoes and Blair couldn’t wait to try them. He had made a lemon, chicken and rice soup for the start of the meal. Everything was ready and Blair listened as Jim opened the door with his key.
Jim walked in and smiled when he smelled dinner. “You made Greek food?”
“I thought it sounded good for Christmas Eve. Does it sound good to you?” Blair asked.
“Chief, I was ready to eat something out of the truck that had been there for a week. I’m starving.”
“They didn’t feed you at the party?” Blair wondered.
“What party? There was no party. We all had stakeout for the Christmas Bandit, whom we caught, by the way,” Jim said proudly. He glanced over and saw the tree and said, “Wasn’t that tree silver this morning?”
“Oh yeah, I almost forgot to tell you. I thought we needed a new tree-something that called our name out and didn’t kill a real tree.”
“That’s fine, Blair. It was Carolyn’s anyhow and honestly, it reminded me of a cold sterile room when it was up,” Jim confessed.
“I’m glad you’re not mad that I changed it,” Blair said softly.
“This is your house too, Chief.”
“Come on, wash up for dinner. It’s done. I can’t promise the leg of lamb will still be juicy. It might have dried out from cooking too long. I thought you had a party to go to tonight at the station.”
“Blair, I would have taken you if there was a party at the station. As it was, everyone asked me where you were. I should have taken you on the stakeout. You would have been thrilled,” Jim said, before he let out a bark of laughter.
Blair seemed pleased with this and that confused Jim somewhat. But then again, Jim confused easily these days with having feelings for his partner and not knowing what to do with them.
They sat down and Jim tried the soup, and made all of the yummy sounds you make when something makes you feel good. Then he moved to the leg of lamb and the potatoes with broccoli. There was just the right amount of lemon on the vegetables and the leg of lamb was delicious. It was so tender-you didn’t need a knife at all.
“Blair, you’ve outdone yourself with this dinner,” Jim said happily.
“I’m so glad you like it. This is my first try at cooking an all Greek meal. I was nervous.”
“I don’t know why, you did it all perfectly. Thank you. Everything was delicious. Are we having desert?”
“Oh yeah, I made a bread pudding with bourbon sauce over it. The sauce is killer, I have to warn you,” Blair teased.
“Why are you home on Christmas Eve?” Jim asked, switching gears so fast it made Blair’s head spin.
“I didn’t have anyone to spend it with that meant anything to me,” Blair explained.
“And you thought it would be fun to cook dinner for your grouchy partner?”
“Jim, you’re not always grouchy. I was a little worried about the little tree I put up. I was afraid you wanted the silver one and I just really hated it.”
“This dinner, desert and the tree have really made my holiday special. Thank you for everything, Blair.”
“What about you giving me a hand cleaning up? Tomorrow is a big day. We’re having turkey. Does that sound good?” Blair asked.
“That sounds excellent, Blair.”
The two men got up and side by side cleared the table, put away all of the food and then proceeded to wash and dry all of the dishes. Once that was done, Jim walked upstairs and got his gift out of the closet and brought it down to put under the tree.
Blair laughed when he saw it. “We both used the same wrapping paper. How comical is that?”
Jim looked closer at the tree while he placed the gift there. “Chief, are those homemade gingerbread cookies on the tree along with the candy canes and ribbon?”
“Yes, I didn’t have a lot to spend on ornaments. Sorry about that,” Blair said.
“It looks great, Chief. I mean it. Can we eat those cookies tomorrow?”
“No, I have some freshly made in a container on the counter for you to eat tomorrow. I’m sort of tired, so I think I’ll hit the hay,” Blair said as he headed towards his room.
“Chief, come here for a minute,” Jim said.
Blair walked over to him and was pleasantly surprised when Jim pulled him into a huge hug. “Merry Christmas, Chief.”
Blair continued the hug and didn’t answer.
“Are you all right, Blair?”
“Yeah, I’m just mushy about the holidays. Thank you for making this one special,” Blair answered.
“Chief, I didn’t do anything, you did it all.”
“You were here. You hugged me and wished me a Merry Christmas. I was so lonely tonight, but now I feel great. Thank you again, Jim.”
Jim didn’t let him pull away from him this time. Jim tilted Blair’s face up and Jim went in for the kiss of a lifetime. Both men felt the electrical type charge go through their bodies. They were meant to be together.
“How would you like to sleep upstairs with me tonight?” Jim asked.
“God, I would love to.”
“That’s great, but you can just call me Jim.”
Blair snickered as the two of them walked up the stairs to begin their new life.
Blair glanced at the tree on his way up the stairs and realized it had all started with the little tree. He would be forever grateful for it and they were never getting rid of that tree.
Greek Leg of Lamb:
5 lb. leg of lamb
Salt and pepper
2 oz. butter
1 c. water or wine - wine is best, red cooking wine
Several cloves of garlic
Wash the meat well and set aside in the roasting pan.
In small bowl mix salt and pepper, oregano and the peeled garlic. Mix well.
Cut incisions all over leg of lamb where you put garlic cloves and a little butter, seasoning the lamb, rubbing it in. Use all butter, rub on meat what is left of incisions. Then pour the juice of the lemon all over lamb. After seasoning the lamb let set about an hour. Then cook on 375 oven. After it gets started well, after an hour, lower oven to 350 or 325. Cook slowly. Add 1 cup of water or wine. Keep basting the lamb until browned nicely and done to taste.
6 med. potatoes, cubed
1/2 c. fresh lemon juice (about 2 1/2 lemons)
1/3 c. vegetable oil
1 tbsp. olive oil
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
2 garlic cloves, pressed
3 c. hot water
Chopped fresh parsley
Toss together the potatoes, lemon juice, oils, spices and garlic in a deep flat pan about 8 x 12 inches. Add the water. Bake uncovered for about 45 to 60 minutes at 475 degrees. Stir every 20 minutes adding more water if necessary to prevent sticking.
Be very careful not to burn the potatoes during the last 20 minutes. During the final 20 minutes allow the water to evaporate until only the oil is left. Garnish with fresh parsley and serve. 100% cholesterol free.
Greek Chicken and Rice Soup:
1/2 lb. chicken
2/3 c. uncooked rice
1/2 tsp. salt
2 eggs, beaten
3 tbsp. lemon juice
2 tbsp. snipped parsley or chives
2 qts. Broth
Dice chicken, add homemade or canned broth, rice and salt, bring to a boil reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes until rice is tender. Mix eggs and lemon juice. Stir 1/4 cup of the hot broth into egg mixture; stir into broth mixture in saucepan. Cook and stir over low heat until slightly thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Do not boil or eggs will curdle. Garnish with parsley or chives.
Bread Pudding with Bourbon Sauce:
12 oz. loaf, day old, French bread
2 tbsp. soft butter
1 qt. milk
2 c. sugar
1/2 c. seedless raisins
2 tbsp. vanilla
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 13 x 9 inch pan with butter (use all 2 tablespoons).
Break bread into chunks in a large bowl, pour milk over it. When soft continue to break smaller. Soak until all milk is absorbed.
Beat eggs with sugar. Stir in raisins and vanilla. Add to bread. Mix until well combined. Pour into buttered pan. Place pan in large shallow pan. Pour boiling water (1 inch) into pan. Bake for 1 hour until knife, inserted in center, comes out clean.
8 tbsp. butter, cut in 1/2 inch bits
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. bourbon
Melt butter in double boiler. Stir 1 cup sugar and egg in small bowl. Gradually add to butter until sugar dissolves over hot, not boiling, water. Remove from heat after 2-3 minutes; let cool before stirring in bourbon. Pour warm sauce over pudding, top with whipped cream.