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His clawed fingers tear deep welts. The red flurries through the air around him and he bared his teeth in defiance. Kaine would not be conquered so easily. He was a man born (fine, cloned) with the proportional strength of a spider and had honed its use to drive terror into the hearts of his enemies.

“Are you sure you don’t want any help, babe?”

Flash’s voice has a tremulous quality to it. Kaine doesn’t hear it very often. Sometimes late at night, when they’re so close their heartbeats sync. But this is different. Kaine might not be the most emotionally adept person but he can tell there’s a bit of a smile tugging at the corner of the blond’s lips. Kaine growls at him.

“It doesn’t have to be this hard you know,” Flash must be able to tell he’s on thin ice with Kaine because he’s putting on his “reasonable” voice. It very reasonably makes Kaine want to throw a ball of webbing at his face.

“I can do this! I am not giving up and I’m not letting you step in when it’s something I have to do myself,” Kaine insists, drawing himself up and preparing for another go.

“You’re ridiculous, I hope you realize that,” Flash replies as he walks off.

“Fuck you.”

“Finish wrapping that and we’ll talk.”

“I don’t need help!” Kaine yells from his pile of decimated wrapping paper, balled up tape and lumpy boxes. Maybe Aracely would just accept a stocking filled with cash. He wrestles with the wrapping paper for a little longer before he gets up and wanders into the kitchen where Flash is doing something on the counter with a mixing bowl and a beater. Kaine is capable of cooking at least enough to function but he has no interest in it. Flash isn't a gourmet but he does have a much better hand and seems to think that Aracely and Andi should get at least a serving of vegetables a day at minimum.

"Are you still being a dick or have you decided to talk to me?" Flash asks as he stirs something that smells good but unfamiliar to Kaine, it's white and smells of pleasant spices. A lot of things are unfamiliar to him though but with Flash it doesn't make him feel inadequate (not purposefully anyway). It just makes it feel... like being invited into a life you never knew possible.

"I'm always a dick, you were warned when we moved in together. Repeatedly," Kaine replies but leans in to press his forehead to Flash's temple, silently asking forgiveness. "....I've never done this before. I mean, the last one involved multiple Santas attempting to rob the Plaza."

"I know- okay I didn't know that and you should probably tell me that story some time," Flash replies, serene. Well maybe not serene but maybe more like... accepting. Kaine doesn't always understand it, doesn't know why he deserves it but it gets him in the ribs. "I uh.... this is important to me, too," he adds.

"I just -- not just because of this but I want it to be good for all of us," Kaine mutters. He has dim memories that aren't his own of baking cookies and shiny papers, music and laughter. "I should be able to handle wrapping a fuckin' box. Donald and Wally are coming and Aracely is gonna be on her break and I can't fuck this up."

Flash turns away from the counter and presses two fingers against his lips. Kaine's brows come together heavily over his nose but Flash is pretty much the only person who can get away with silencing him. Temporarily. "It'll be what it is," Flash says and smiles, so handsome it's almost enough to drive a person crazy. "Things may go great or they may not. We may get called away to go chase super villains in negative 30 degree weather. Or we might just hang out, drink egg nog and open badly wrapped presents."

Kaine huffs, exasperated. "Thanks, that's really helpful." He starts to draw away when Flash stops him.

"I don't care that things might turn out not good enough because they're already so good that anything else would be like- like being mad that a field goal isn't as good because you hit the goal posts," Flash grins at him, cupping the back of Kaine's neck.

"I really hate your sports analogies."

"Fine," the blond huffs, upsetting the curls fanned across his forehead. Kaine's fingers itch to run through them. "It's like being annoyed that your handsome boyfriend who's doing his best to support you uses sports analogies instead of I don't know, something with spiders."

Kaine would argue that there's more to him than spiders and arguing with Flash but he'd rather kiss the other man instead. "You're a sap and too damn good for me," he admits when they pull apart.

"I know, that's why I went ahead and got you some stockings so you can stuff them with cash for everyone."

It's sappy as fuck but Kaine definitely appreciates he's already got the best present, wrapped or otherwise.