Naughty but Nice

by Jane Davitt


"It's Christmas Eve," Blair said. He leaned back against the couch and grinned up at Jim. "On the whole, what do you think: naughty or nice?"

Jim let himself sprawl out and relax, a beer in hand, and thought about it.

He'd let the resolution to work out more slide, but he'd still hit the gym twice a week, most weeks. He was in fair shape for a man his -- he was in fair shape.

He'd cleared more cases than any other detective -- again -- and put people who more than deserved it behind bars or buried six feet deep.

He'd helped out at a youth center down town, coaching a basketball team, which had been rewarding and left him exhausted but smiling. Those kids… He knew the odds were good that he would see some of them up on charges in the future; they weren't angels, but he hoped some of them had gotten the idea that a cop wasn't always someone to fear and hate.

His love life… hmm. Not a disaster as much as non-existent, but he hadn't broken anyone's heart.

And he'd tidied out his sock drawer.

He toasted himself with his beer. Nice. Definitely. "I think… yeah. I'm on the nice list. Bring it on, Santa."

Blair snorted and reached back to punch Jim in the leg. "Not you; me!"

"What? Oh." Jim took another sip from his bottle and thought about it. It took a surprisingly short time to realize that most of his accomplishments had featured Blair in the background, lending a helping hand and being generally supportive.

Huh. How about that.

He pursed his lips, feeling mildly put out. But he couldn't lie on Christmas Eve, so he ruffled Blair's hair and said indulgently, "You've been good, too, Chief." He finished his beer and added, "But I did those socks all by myself."

Blair took the bottle from his hand. "Socks? What? That's your last beer. You're babbling."

"I am not!"

"You think I'm on the nice list; that says it all." Blair's grin managed to be both devilish and cute. "Nice is no fun, man, no fun at all. I want to be on the naughty list."

Jim hauled himself up and smiled down at him affectionately, filled with holiday cheer and a warm awareness of just how damn lucky he was. He patted Blair's upturned face with a gentle hand. "Not a chance, my little elf, not a chance."

He got punched again for that, but it was worth it.

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