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Last Christmas I Gave You My Heart | This Year...I Got More Creative

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“You can go, Damon. Really. I’ll be fine.”

“You’re not fine, Elena,” he protests, reaching out for her hands and stopping her from pacing as he pulls them into his own. He swings his legs enough that he slides from the bed to the floor to stand up and meet her eyes, and leans to kiss her forehead.

“I’m not leaving you alone on Christmas, baby. Especially not sick.”

Elena sighs.

“Aren’t we not supposed to get sick?” she whines, twirling around and realizing a moment later it’s technically a mistake, as she then has to lean back into Damon’s chest to steady herself when she dizzies.

He shrugs, pulling her back against him and kissing her cheek softly before laying both his hands on her shoulders and starting to massage them.

A shiver - well, it wasn’t quite that, but she can’t think what else to call it - runs down her back, and a moan escapes her, which she bites her lip to hold back, entirely unsuccessfully.

Damon sits back on the edge of the bed and urges her backwards with his hands at her hips, both of them looking at themselves in the mirror as he continues his massage, making it seem more erotic - at least, to Elena - than it otherwise would be.

Just a man taking care of his wife is all.

Wow, what a thought…she might be a vampire with a sinus infection, but this was the life.

+

This was the life all right.

A new life, to be specific.

A new, practically nonexistent, teensy Salvatore life.

If two boxes worth of Clear Blue tests confirmed anything, that is.

Holy shit. Holy…

Holy Caroline’s last moments at our house before the ski resort trip heads off…shit.

“You’re gonna be okay, you know,” comes her best friend’s reassuring voice from the now-open door into the bathroom. Elena rushes over to wrap her in an awkward hug.

“Women have been doing this for-literally-ever. You can handle it.”

“Women have been dying in childbirth for-literally-ever, too, Caroline.”

Caroline pulls away forcefully, grasping Elena by her forearms to address her.

“Girl. A, ladies’ health care may not be the top of the line, but it’s better and probably safer now than, like, basically ever. B, you’re a vampire. You have already died. Is it really all that bad?”

“This pep talk is significantly less helpful than anything else you’ve said this whole time.”

“Too bad.”

Caroline pulls Elena back into a hug. This one’s too tight, but neither of them really cares. It’s the last time they’ll see each other in person for nearly a week, anyway.

Damon’s entirely-not-discreet throat clearing alerts them to the necessity of Caroline’s imminent departure.

“Hate to break up the BFF time, but your ride is starting to get a little, well,” Damon says, half-teasingly, swirling his finger next to his head then pointing at an imaginary watch.

“Tell your brother I’ll be there in just a minute.”

“Oh, I’m not talking about my brother. I mean your girlfriend.”

Caroline puts on an aggressively nice smile, the one that pretty much turns her into the scariest restaurant hostess in Mystic Falls...and everywhere else, for that matter. She could gracefully rip someone’s head off and have her hair entirely back in place in a matter of seconds, and it didn’t usually show itself without purpose, but recently...well, she found purpose.

“I’ll be there in just a minute.”

Damon raises his hands in feigned defeat, and just a few seconds Elena can hear his voice in the background, telling Rebekah to calm her tits.

Jesus Christ, Damon.

“Remember. You got this.”

Elena takes a deep breath and nods as assuredly as she can manage.

“I got this.”

“Good girl. I love you. Merry Christmas.”

Caroline rushes off, giving Damon a playful punch and her holiday well-wishes on the way to Rebekah’s passenger seat.

+

He’s napping - well, pretending or trying to, at least - when she actually finds him the night of Christmas Eve, having separated when he and Cassie had gone out for their run and Elena had headed back to bed.

Next to the freaking Christmas tree, with a Santa hat covering his face and his head in the dog’s bed, the ever-reliable Cassie next to his head without a shit to give.

She doesn’t sneak up on him, per se, but she sits behind his head, out of his natural range of sight, and jingles one of Cassie’s toys above him for a moment before pulling the Santa hat off.

Ah, so he was napping. Oops.

Damon startles, but it only takes him a couple seconds to put the pieces together. After all, a laughing wife right next to you kind of told the story, didn’t it?

He rolls his eyes, but sits up anyway, then lifts her up and maneuvers her into his lap. He pulls Cassie’s bed back with them as he scoots back to the couch so that he can keep leaning against something.

“Why, Mrs Salvatore, I thought we were waiting to do presents when our familia returns from Witch Mountain,” he muses teasingly when he realizes she has something in her hand.

Elena chuckles, and she can feel herself blushing. Well, whatever the vampire equivalent was...of blushing.

Moment of truth, here I come.

“Most of them, yes. But this is...special. A little more private. For now, not forever, but for now,” she stammers, but she manages to hand him the small wrapped package without her hands shaking or anything really noticeable like that.

He certainly looks intrigued as he takes it from her, though of course he’s too busy sending her the inquisitive look to look down at the box itself for a couple, very long, moments.

His opening it seems to take even longer.

“Oh.”

It’s a start. A shitty start, maybe, but...

“Oh my god.”

Oh no.

“Are you sure?”

Elena’s heart flutters.

“That’s number five,” she says, a teeny, nervous grin slipping onto her lips. “The fifth positive test, Damon. Out of five.”

His laugh is incredulous, and she doesn’t quite know what to make of it...until he yanks her around to face him and into an abrupt but happy kiss - one hand staying, all too gently, with its fingertips at the nape of her neck and its palm on her cheek, the other still holding the device. Soon they’re both beaming, barely even able to kiss by the time he pulls away.

“And you - you want this? You want to do this?”

“Yes, Damon, yes! Yes, I want a family. Of my making.”

Her voice comes out sounding like she’s pleading with him, but he doesn’t...totally look like she might need to.

And then he chuckles, and for a moment buries his nose in her shoulder.

“Sorry, just - a homemade family. Sounds like we’re making gingerbread people.”

“We could do that, too.”

Damon furrows his brow, moving his upper body back from her so that from where Elena sits on his legs they see each other’s expressions clearly.

“No offense to gingerbread people...but I have a much better idea.”