This was definitely not how Phil imagined spending his first Christmas Eve at home with Dan, but all things considered, it wasn’t that bad.
Yes, the flat was a total mess of moving boxes. The house they were moving into was even worse, with unfinished painting and tile waiting to be installed in the upstairs bathroom, and the move-in date has been pushed back yet again with the announcement of another lockdown.
Yes, they didn’t have a Christmas tree, a proper one that is. There were no homemade christmas biscuits.No warm hugs from Kath, no shouting over board games, no usual Lester family merriment to be seen
But on the bright side, the flat still showed some signs of Christmas. There was a small pile of presents next to the couch that arrived by mail over the last week that Dan insisted they wait until Christmas to open. Phil had haphazardly thrown some tinsel on the slightly dying palm tree in the corner of the living room. And most importantly, there was a certain someone sitting on the couch with Phil, his long dangly legs intertwined with Phil’s.
Phil looked over at Dan’s feet and couldn’t contain a small chuckle.
“What are you laughing at?” Dan lifted his eyes from his screen and grinned cheekily at Phil.
“Nothing” Phil smiled back.
They looked at each other for a couple seconds and then both looked back down to their screens, still smiling. But no matter how much Phil tried, he could not stay focused on his Twitter feed. His eyes were drawn to Dan’s socked feet. Phil was mesmerized by the little sliver of skin between his partner’s fuzzy socks and the hem of his pajama bottoms, pajamas that didn’t even belong to him in the first place
When it was drafty and cold like today, Dan usually wore his own gray pajama pants but during all the chaos and confusion of packing, he had accidentally packed away most of his loungewear into an unmarked box. After days of sulking ( “Dan, no one can see you, what does it matter what you’re wearing!” “But I can see me, Phil!” “Just put some pants on before you freeze to death, jeez” ), he finally agreed to just borrow some of Phil’s pajamas. In all honesty, Phil didn’t understand what the fuss was about since they shared shirts and jackets and jeans all the time. But emoji pajamas was where Dan apparently drew the line, and to be fair, he did look kind of ridiculous in them. For one thing, the pajamas themselves were a little ridiculous, but even more ridiculous was how they were just a little bit too short on Dan.
Phil had been a tall person for the majority of his life. He’d been used to being the tallest one in the room, to looking down when talking to people, to sticking out like a sore thumb. which is just another reason why being with Dan was so refreshing. It was surprisingly nice to feel small sometimes, to feel crowded by his boyfriend, to feel entirely surrounded by Dan’s large body, his large hands, his long legs wrapped around Phil’s hips.
Unfortunately for Phil, Dan spent most of his life trying to make himself smaller. He instinctively hunched his back, rounded his shoulders, slightly bent his knees, all to make himself a little shorter than he actually was. It was so normal for him that in a lot of their photos Dan actually looked smaller than Phil. And Phil didn’t mind that. Really, what does it matter?
But there was just something so endearing about Dan wearing a pair of Phil’s pants, their height difference so immediately apparent; endearing and, quite honestly, hot.
Phil’s musings were interrupted by Dan’s voice and a light kick at his feet.
“Phil, stop staring at my feet, you perv.”
“What am I supposed to do, they’re nice feet!” Phil gently kicked back at Dan and then ran his own feet along that lovely little sliver of skin.
“What is it with you today? Is the Christmas spirit getting you extra horny or something? Or did you suddenly develop a foot fetish?” Dan teased.
“You just look good in my clothes, ok?”
“Wait what? You mean in this absolute monstrosity?” Dan raised one of his legs in the air, pointing at the absolutely offensive emoji pajamas.
Phil couldn’t stop himself from staring at the pant leg falling down, revealing even more skin and some light hair on Dan’s calf.
“No, Phil, you’re serious? You’re turned on by emojis? We might need a divorce.”
Despite his indignation, Dan moved over onto his knees and scooted along the couch to climb onto Phil’s lap.
“I just like how they look on you” Phil wrapped his arms around Dan’s back and nestled into his chest, leaving soft kisses along the nape of his neck.
“They look awful! They are way too short on me, babe!”
Dan leaned back to take a look at Phil’s face.
“Is it the thing about me being tall again?”
Phil felt his cheeks heat up. “Maybe….”
Dan smiled and sat up on his knees, crowding Phil and looming over him. “You like to feel small, don’t you?”
“Maybe…” Phil’s voice got really quiet, almost a whisper. “Or I just think that my boyfriend being an actual giant is very hot.”
“Is that so?” Dan leaned down to kiss Phil on the lips.
All things considered, Phil really didn’t have much to complain about this Christmas.
It was too cold to stay out in the living room while naked and sweaty, so they ended up in the bedroom under a bundle of blankets. Dan was lying on his back, stretched out on the bed, Phil’s head resting on his shoulder. Phil was cuddled up to his side, basking in the warmth his partner radiated. He could feel Dan’s large hands curled around him and hear the steady breath slightly rocking his chest.
There was a comfortable silence in the room, only interrupted by the sound of an occasional car driving past.
Phil turned his head, pressing his lips to Dan’s shoulder.
“Happy Christmas, Dan” he whispered.
“Happy Christmas, babe,” Dan tightened his grip around his partner.
“I’m hungry,” Phil mumbled. “Do we have anything to eat?”
“There may be a box of mince pies hidden away in the kitchen just for this occasion,” Dan whispered.
Phil immediately sat up. “What? Where? I looked all over!”
“They’re in that top cabinet in the kitchen you can’t reach” Dan laughed. “I wanted to make sure we would have some left for actual Christmas day.”
“God, I love you, Daniel Howell!” exclaimed Phil. “No, go get them for me! I’m about to die of hunger here.”
“Lazy sod. Go put the kettle on, I’ll get you your pies.”
They ended up eating the mince pies in the living room next to their tiny tree, watching episodes of the Great British Bake-Off in the background. Phil was cozied up in the hoodie he stole from Dan (“ If you wear my pants, I can wear your hoodie ” Phil had argued), pulling the slightly too long sleeves over his hands.
Even looking at the TV, Phil could feel Dan’s gaze on him.
“What are you looking at?” he finally asked, smiling.
“You look good in my clothes,” Dan replied, grinning.
Phil chuckled. “Give me another 20 minutes to finish this tea and we can go back to the bedroom.”
“Take your time, Philly, we’ve got all night. Don’t want you to overexert yourself, you know.”
“Are you calling me old?!” Phil replied with mock indignation, grinning from ear to ear. He put his tea down and climbed up to straddle Dan’s lap. Dan’s hands automatically made their way under the hoodie and onto Phil’s waist.
“I don’t know, am I?”
Phil shut him up with a forceful kiss.
This Christmas definitely didn’t exactly look like Phil planned. But there were worse ways to spend the holidays. Hopefully by next year they would be hosting the extended family in their new house, there would be a little niece running all around the place chasing after their dog. Hopefully, by next Christmas Phil would have a hyphenated last name and a ring on his finger.
But for now, big spooning his giant of a boyfriend in a nest of blankets, this wasn’t half bad, all things considering.