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storypaint ([personal profile] storypaint) wrote2015-07-28 08:10 pm

[Thrilling Adventure Hour] when you give of yourself (Croach/Red/Sparks)

Title: when you give of yourself
Fandom: Thrilling Adventure Hour
Length: 597 words
Prompt: Sparks/Croach/Red, mixing traditions, for [ profile] shannondapper
Pairing: Croach/Red/Sparks
Other: Also at Tumblr.

Excerpt: "It seems sufficiently trimmed, Sparks Nevada, but this is not my cultural tradition," Croach answered.

"You’re making this up," Sparks said.

"Making this up?" Croach said, in his most offended tone. Sparks squinted at him. "It is tradition," Croach announced with gravity.

"It’s ridiculous," Sparks said, and Red quit holding back her amused snort. Croach turned to her, twitching his antennae with minor signs of dismay.

"Red One!" he said.

"The gig’s up, Blue One," Red said. "Told you he wouldn’t buy it."

"You were trying to fool me!" Sparks said, indignantly. He quieted when Red wrapped her arms around him from behind, pulling him down to nuzzle at his neck.

"We’ve been practicing, as sometimes it is helpful to be deceptive in the marshaling business," Red said to him.

Sparks winced, remembering a recent showdown in which Croach admitted to their position and gotten shot for his pains. He’d deserved it, as far as Sparks was concerned, but it had made capturing the outlaw a little more difficult.

"It is uncomfortable," Croach grumbled. "Shall we proceed with hanging the tree?"

"Good ole human tradition, lyin’," Sparks said, "although not to me. Definitely not. It’s trimming the tree, Croach, not hanging it."

"It seems sufficiently trimmed, Sparks Nevada, but this is not my cultural tradition," Croach answered.

"See, now that’s true," Sparks answered, and Red let go of him as he bent down and opened the box at his feet. It contained a number of space Christmas ornaments, which he began to distribute to his partners. He hoped there would be enough room on the tree; normally he had to do this by himself and didn’t put up much, but this was special. This was their first Christmas in their first home together, and even if that home was sometimes here in his little apartment and sometimes out under the plains in their Martian homestead, it didn’t matter to him, as long as they could have a tree. It made everything feel right, somehow.

"Done," he decided finally, palming Croach’s back so that his partner paused at his work. "Except for the star. Mom and Dad always let me do that myself."

He picked it out of the bottom of the box and held it up, the battered piece of gold-painted brass that his parents had given him the last time they visited. They’d used the same star for as long as he could remember, and he could remember his father picking him up and putting him on his shoulders so he could reach.

"Why don’t you do it, Croach?" Sparks said, handing him the star. Croach held it carefully.

"I still think it’d be better with a mask," he said, reaching up to place it, and then the three of them pulled into an embrace, looking at their work for a quiet moment.

"All right," Sparks said finally. "Martian time. What are we decorating for Han-oo'Kah?"

Red winced at his pronunciation, and Sparks ignored her.

"Why would we decorate for that festival?" Croach asked. "It is a simple feast day."

"I could go for a feast," Sparks said.

"Better get started making it, then!" Red said, smacking him in the butt, and in retaliation of course he had to try to chase her down to tickle her. Croach assisted both sides, and by the time they were done fooling around, the tree had been forgotten.

The next day, they all three put on ceremonial masks and Sparks saved all his complaints until they were alone, later.

It took a lot sometimes to balance out their onus, but he was pretty sure it was worth looking a little ridiculous sometimes.

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