- No Beta
- Alternate Universe
- Challenge Response
- Established Relationship
Tony generally didn’t celebrate Christmas. When one has actually met “Santa Clause” one tends to skip celebrations in his most dubious honor. The guy was a total asshole. During their one meeting, he’d spent the entire time either staring at Tony’s ass or referring to him as “the half-breed”—all whilst talking in the third person. Like “Santa” was narrating his own movie or something. All, Santa would like to tap that tight little half-breed ass, or Santa does not approve of half-breeds. Anyway, the guy was a creepy asshole, and Tony was adamantly against anything that involved him.
Though, he did set out cookies and milk for the guy…Granted, they were foam cookies painted to look realistic, and the milk was made from soy and grass. You’d think that, after the first time, the guy would learn to skip Tony’s house…but nope. Almost a decade later and that particular prank was still going strong.
Some people just never learned.
Of course, it could be that his grandmother scared the guy shitless. Endora was a force of nature, and anyone mistreating her grandson tended to piss her off to the extreme. He had it on good authority—namely, Uncle Arthur—that Endora was still venting her spleen on Santa for his treatment of Tony. Cousin Serena had promised to share video the next time they got together for lunch. He was seriously looking forward to it. No one does revenge quite like Endora.
While the family didn’t celebrate Christmas, they did celebrate Yule. Grandmama was always quick to point out that it started out as an immortal holiday that the mortals quickly stole. Though he hadn’t heard from anyone in the family regarding holiday plans. He figured, if he could get the time off, he’d just fly down to see Aunt Samantha and her family. The Stevens family was always happy to see him. He figured that Darrin still wasn’t over the novelty of a warlock deciding to live as a mortal in law enforcement. Gods knew that Tony got shit from the family regularly for it. So the support of the Stevens branch was wonderful. It didn’t hurt that Samantha was a frankly excellent cook. Or that he got some rather interesting prank ideas from Tabitha and Adam.
Tony finished writing his reports from their last case and submitted them to Gibbs for review. He’d already updated all the various forms and calendars for the team as SFA, so the only thing left for him to do now was to review the reports from Ziva and Tim…A task he hated with the fiery passion of a thousand burning suns all going supernova at the same time. If Ziva submitted one more report in Hebrew, he was going to hurt someone. Or maybe just sick Uncle Arthur on her. That would undoubtedly have priceless entertainment value.
He kicked back their reports, complete with notes on what they needed to fix, turned off his computer, and headed home. He’d call Sam later and see if he could crash there for the holidays, but he definitely needed some sleep first. He’d been running non-stop on their last case for four straight days—managing to take a few catnaps in here and there, but mostly running off of caffeine and spite. Gibbs might be okay with being a bastard and running his people into the ground, but he, for one, needed sleep and real actual food. Go figure.
Once he got home, he went straight to the kitchen after divesting himself of his firearm and changing into some comfy sweats. The first order of business for the night was real food and then sleep, in that order. He might even pop over to Italy for his favorite Dal Pescatore indulgence. Hmm…That thought sounded better and better, especially after he’d had a chance to check his refrigerator which was empty—as it tended to be when he hadn’t been able to find the time to go grocery shopping since his boss was an asshole and treated every single case like the world would end if his people saw their own beds.
Tony popped over to Italy and went straight to Dal Pescatore’s for Cappello da Prete. Beef shoulder braised with Nebbiolo wine and Yellow Polenta and his favorite chocolate cake, the Nyangbo. A chocolate cake which was made with 68% dark chocolate with pears, hazelnuts, almonds, and topped with vanilla ice cream. He’d earned those calories, and he was going to enjoy each delectable bite.
He’d been home from Italy for a total of five minutes when his grandmother showed up floating, reclined in the air by his bed.
“Hello, Precious,” she said with a cheeky grin.
“Hey, Grandmama,” he said around a yawn.
Endora frowned. “You’re positively exhausted, Tony. What has that stupid little mortal parading around like he has any kind of real authority done now?”
Tony rolled his eyes. “Come on, you know my job has odd hours,” he began.
Endora growled. “Odd hours? Odd hours?!” She cupped his chin, turning his face side to side as she examined him. “I really just don’t understand why you persist in this whole affair, Precious. You’re almost as bad as Samantha—pretending to be mortal! Of all the inane, asinine things…”
“I happen to like my job, Grandmama, as we’ve been over…Multiple times,” he said tiredly. “Can this wait? I really need sleep.”
“So you do. Give us a kiss, precious, and I’ll be off. But I’ll be back tomorrow. The family is having a grand old affair this year, and I fully expect you to attend.” So saying, she kissed Tony’s forehead, stuck out her cheek and, after he dutifully kissed said cheek, disappeared.
Tony collapsed in bed, grateful to get some sleep.
— — — —
He’d slept for fourteen straight hours and was in the process of making a really late breakfast of eggs Benedict when there was a knock at his front door. Tony frowned.
It wouldn’t be anyone from work, as Gibbs would just walk right in with the keys he had—he still needed to get those back from him—and the only other person who knew where he lived was Jimmy, and he would’ve called ahead. He put down the dishtowel he had thrown over his shoulder and went to the door just as whoever was on the other side started knocking again.
“I’m coming,” he called as he checked to see who was on the other side of the door. His jaw dropped, and he hurriedly got the door open. Standing on the other side was one Commander Steven McGarrett. Tony grinned as he threw himself at Steve.
“Steve! What are you even doing here? You said you wouldn’t have leave until April.”
Steve grinned. “Surprise! This is a great surprise, right?” He hugged Tony close and just hummed in pleasure.
Tony pulled back from the hug and pulled Steve into his apartment. “Yes! Best surprise. Seriously.” Once Steve was inside the apartment, he pushed him against the closed door and dove in for a kiss. He’d missed this—kissing Steve. He’d missed the taste of him, the feeling of his arms wrapped around him, the closeness. He knew Steve loved his job, and until DADT had been repealed, they’d had to be discreet, but man. He’d missed being close to him. He always missed Steve when he was gone.
A throat clearing interrupted their moment, and they broke apart like naughty schoolboys caught with their hands in the cookie jar.
“Well…This is a surprise,” Endora said, clearly amused. “Is this the paramore you’ve been hiding, Precious?” She eyed Steve speculatively, “Damn, now I owe Samantha a child-free weekend.”
Tony spluttered. “I’d love to say I’m surprised that there’s a bet making the rounds on who I’m seeing…but I’m really not.”
Steve chuckled. “You gonna introduce me, babe?”
Tony shot Steve a look out of the side of his eye. “Babe, this is my grandmother, Endora. Grandmama, this is Commander Steve McGarrett, love of my life.”
Steve blushed the most adorable shade of pink. “It’s nice to meet you, Ma’am,” he said earnestly.
Endora scowled. “A mortal, really? Honestly! What is it with my family? Where did I go wrong?”
Tony rolled his eyes. “Yes, how terrible of me to fall for a man who treats me well, is amazing in bed, and respects me. The horror,” he said dryly.
Endora’s lips twitched in a barely suppressed smile. “So, that’s how it is.”
“Very well,” she turned to Steve and looked him up and down. “I suppose you’ll do. At least he seems prettier if not more study than David. If it had to be a mortal, at least you’re pretty.” She turned to Tony, “you said he’s good in bed?”
“He fucks like it’s his job and he wants a raise,” he said with a smirk.
“Oh, well done, Precious!” Endora grinned at him. “Very well. What’s done is done and all that rot. You simply must bring him to meet the family.”
Both men’s mouths dropped open. “Grandmama,” Tony began.
“Nonsense! Yule is a time for family…Isn’t that right, Steven?”
Tony’s shoulders slumped in defeat. He knew how to pick his battles with Endora, and this was clearly a loss.
— — — —
Tony turned to Steve, “remember, don’t take drinks from anyone but Samantha or me. Don’t shake hands with anyone but me, Samantha, or Darren—he should be safe enough.” He turned to open the door and paused, “and don’t agree to anything in writing or verbally.” He opened the door and paused again, “and don’t take anything Uncle Arthur says seriously. He’s a practical joker, and his jokes are terrible.”
Steve chuckled. “Tony, babe, calm down. This is just a friendly little meeting between your family and me. If they’re anything like you, we’ll get along just fine.” He pulled Tony into a quick hug.
“Famous last words,” Tony said dryly.
They entered the house, closed the door, and were in the process of taking off their coats when Samantha came upon them.
“Tony!” She exclaimed happily. “Oh, it’s so good to see you!” She pulled him into a hug then noticed Steve standing there. “Oh! And you brought your beau! You must be Steven,” she said, pulling away to extend a hand to Steve for a handshake.
Steve shot Tony an amused smirk. “You’ve heard of me, huh?”
Samantha grinned. “Oh, yes. Tony’s not one to talk overmuch about the important things, but if you know him well, you can tell when it’s something important.” She shook his hand with a grin. “It helps that the whole family has been betting on if he was seeing someone if they were mortal or not, and when we’d get to meet them.”
Steve laughed. Tony just groaned.
“Come on, Sam. You’re supposed to be my backup!” Tony resolutely did not pout.
Sam just smirked. “Why, I am on your side, Tony! I’m just also on my side. Darren and I could use a nice little vacation.”
Steve burst out laughing. “Yeah, I can definitely see the family resemblance,” he said around his laughter.
Sam smiled proudly. “Come inside! We’re all dying to meet you.” She put an arm around each man and pulled them into the living room.
Tony shot Steve a long-suffering look. “Just remember, babe,” he began.
“I know…I know. Relax babe,” Steve said.
“Mother. Everyone,” Samantha called out. “Tony’s here, and he brought his beau, Steven.”
Everyone turned and called out greetings. Samantha took them over to speak to Endora and Maurice.
“Mother, Father, this is Steve—Tony’s beau,” she said with a smile. “Be nice.”
Endora laughed. “Darling, I’m always nice.”
Maurice just laughed. “Of course you are, Endora. You’re a joy, my dear.”
Endora narrowed her eyes at him. “You had better watch what you say, you old ham.”
Maurice grinned and kissed her cheek. “Come now, my dear, all in good fun.”
Endora sniffed and turned to Tony and Steve. “Tony, precious, give Grandmama a hug.” She opened her arms expectantly.
Tony hugged her. “Grandmama, you remember Steve. Grandfather, this is Steve, the love of my life.”
Steve blushed pink all the way to the tips of his ears and nodded at them both with a politely murmured “Sir, Ma’am.”
Maurice cocked his head. “Well, this one has manners to be sure. He seems much better behaved than Dobson.”
“Darren,” Sam said with an eye-roll. “You know that, Daddy. I’ve only been married to him for fifteen years.”
“If you say so, sweetheart,” he said around an epic unimpressed face.
“Well, now! If it isn’t my favorite nephew!”
“Oh, Lord. Hello Uncle Arthur,” Tony said.
“Tony, I’m hurt! Is that any way to greet your favorite Uncle?” He crossed his arms and pouted.
“First off, you’re my only Uncle,” Tony began.
“Which automatically makes me your favorite!”
“And secondly, you’re still in the doghouse for starting that bet about my love life.”
“Oh! You used to be able to take a joke, Tony. Mortals have ruined you. Just ruined you.” Arthur threw his hands in the air in his typical, overly dramatic fashion. “Besides, we wouldn’t have to resort to betting like common mortals if you’d just come around more often. Don’t you love your family anymore?”
“That’s enough of that!” Samantha cut in. “We’re here to celebrate the season and welcome Steve into the family.” She cut Endora, Maurice, and Arthur pointed looks. “Aren’t we?” She said with quiet menace.
“Of course, darling,” Endora said innocently.
“Yes, sweetheart.” Maurice kissed her cheek.
“Oh, fine.” Arthur went back to pouting.
“Welcome to the family,” Tony said dryly. “If you can survive the night, it’ll be a miracle.”
Steve chuckled nervously.
— — — —
The night was seemingly going as well as could be expected. Tony had stuck to Steve’s side like glue and kept anyone from turning him into anything—natural or unnatural. Tony figured that was as good as he was going to get. No one had forgotten the absolute shit show that Darren meeting the family had been. Of course, Darren was also kind of an asshole and had started making demands on Samantha to change who she was as soon as he knew about the Magic…But that probably didn’t have anything to do with all the animosity the family had towards him.
Steve was surprisingly a hit. The manners drilled into him first by the Navy and later by the SEALs were a hit. Somehow, he’d even managed to endear himself to Endora. Tony had endured them laughing and trash-talking Gibbs and the NCIS team. Sam, of course, thought he was adorable and sweet. The less said about Uncle Arthur, the better—that rascal was cruising for a beat down.
Tony and Steve were outside on the back porch, taking a quiet moment to themselves. “So, what’re the damages?” Tony asked, only half-joking.
“Babe, they’re fine. Your family is fun. Kind of a lot to take in, but they obviously love you. That goes a long way in my book.” He took Tony’s hand. “I’ve been meaning to talk to you, actually,” he began.
“Oh man, please tell me it’s good news!” Tony exclaimed.
“Babe, it’s great news,” Steve began. He drew in a deep breath, dropped to one knee, and pulled out a little blue box. “Tony, from practically the first moment I laid eyes on you on the deck of the Seahawk, I knew my life was never going to be the same. Your courage, dedication, loyalty, and devotion have changed me, humbled me, and been my rock through some of the roughest times of my life. I don’t know what I’d do without you, and frankly, I don’t care to find out. I love you today, I’ll love you tomorrow, and I know I’ll love you forever—marry me.”
Tony just stood there, gobsmacked. “What?”
“Tony, will you marry me?”
“Oh my god, yes! Yes! Of course, I’ll marry you!” Tony pulled Steve up and into a frantic kiss.
Cheering interrupted their kiss from inside the house. They turned towards the house and saw the whole family clustered around the open back door.
“Oh, finally! I thought the boy would never get to it!” Endora called out.
Tony dropped his forehead onto Steve’s shoulder and just laughed.
Profilers for Christmas is an anonymous crime drama Advent Calendar featuring both art and stories. Additional information about the challenge can be found here.