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Twas the Night Before the Night Before Christmas
Author: Summer Reign
Another unconventional Christmas season with the Grissoms.

Title: Twas The Night Before Christmas Eve

Author: Summer Reign (Winter Snow?)

Rating: T

Disclaimer: Not mine and I accept no donations.

Spoilers: Better Off Dead (but you don't need to have seen it to "get" the story)

Summary: Another unconventional Christmas with the Grissoms.


She told him she had heard him sigh.

In the middle of the jungle, with the sounds of nature buzzing around them, she heard him softly release his breath. He might not have believed it, if he hadn't witnessed it himself. The evidence never lied. Even if eye-witness accounts were often subjective. The fact of the matter was, he was the eye-witness, just standing there, drinking her in, when she just turned…to him.

It was one of the most poignant moments of his life.

And, now, he had further proof of this power between them. In the middle of his bedroom, with the vaporizor going full-steam ahead and the sounds of traffic filtering through the old windows, he heard her as she entered the room.

He heard her sigh.


"What are you doing here?" he asked, and winced at the rather cloddish greeting.

"Waiting for you to wake up. Honestly, Gil, I had to check to see if you were breathing a few times. Just what kind of medication are you on?"

Well, okay. Maybe his spidey-sense was not as strong as hers. Not yet,anyway.

"Ugh. I don't know. Some flu stuff, some antihistamines. You flew all the way back here to take care of me?"

She shrugged and came over to his side, putting a hand to his forehead. "I think you're still a little feverish. Is it time for another dose?"

He glanced at the clock. "Not for another hour." Damn. He had slept for five hours straight. "When did you get in?"

She sat on the edge of the bed, in front of his hip. Her hand gently began stroking his beard.

"About 2. I came up, took Hank for a walk. Bought some lovely things to eat at the international market, got us a tree, decorated it…you know,the usual…"

"You got us a tree?" Sara could do more with four hours of free time than anyone he knew.


"But,you're not one for killing trees for…"

"I bought it from a farm just outside the city. They plant a sapling in its place. Next year, we may have to reevaluate this real tree thing but, this year, I thought the scent of pine might unbung your sinuses," she said, lifting a finger and gently tapping his nose before getting up and going over to the dresser.

"Is that the only reason?"

"Well, you do like a real tree. I was actually surprised not to see one here."

" I was supposed to spend Christmas in Vegas…there was no point in getting one for only a few days."

"True. Well, you have one now. I'll show you my decorating skills later, when I haul you to the kitchen for some nice vegetable soup."


"Nice way to talk about my culinary skills,"she said and pulled out a pajama from the dresser drawer. She quickly stripped off her pants and blouse and changed. "I took a long, hot shower after I got home, too. So, I'm not infecting you with any travel germs."

Correction: his spidey-sense was WAY off. She smiled and went around to her side of the bed. He felt the bed dip as she scooted over to him. Sara put an arm around his shoulder and drew him closer to her. He cuddled up into the crook of her arm and looked at her lovely face.

"You look like a woman I married once," he said, and—once again—wondered at the potency of his medication.

"Real-ly? Well, you look nothing like the man I married."

He exaggerated his sniff. "I'm sick."

"Ah ,that explains it. Well, I hate to tell you this, but while you were out of commission, someone snuck in here with a weedwacker and took off half your hair."

"No. That was intentional. Jean-Pierre told me you'd think I was sexy.""

"I always think you're sexy. Maybe if we put a paper bag over that hair…I'll still feel that way."

They had a long-standing teasing argument over the length of his hair. He liked it a little shorter. It was just easier to handle. She liked it longer, so it curled around her fingers. And he could hardly complain when she spent her long, sleepless hours running her fingers through his hair, escorting him safely into the Land of Nod.

"You don't love me as much as your flying to my side would suggest," he grumbled.

"I guess not."

She ruffled his hair and pulled him closer to her chest. There, that felt better than…anything he felt in a month.

"Who told you I was sick?"


He sniffed. "Figures."

"Well, apparently, he's broadened his circle of friends to include more than just…well, you. And he made friends with Judy and she told him you called. After that, he convinced her he could contact me faster than she could, so she gave him your message. And, really, this time—I didn't mind. I was able to book the last available seat to get me here before Christmas."

He tightened his arm around her waist. "Remind me to give him a raise. Although, you're not exactly in for a dazzling holiday."

"Oh, as if I was in for a dazzling holiday in Vegas? The only good thing was that you were coming. But, if the mountain can't come to Sara…"

Grissom snuggled closer. Maybe he could just meld right into her. This way, they'd never have to be apart again. He just closed his eyes and listened to the sound of her voice.

"Besides, even driving from the airport was astonishing. Christmas in Paris is awesome! The lights! Beautiful. Maybe, if I get enough soup into you, we can take a walk tomorrow. Go to midnight mass at Notre Dame. Think of what that must be like at Christmas."

"Maybe, if I wear a mask and carry an oxygen tank."

"That can be arranged."

"I'm glad you're here, Sara. I…missed you."

"Well, there really was no other option. Especially at Christmas."

"Why? You never seemed overly attached to celebrating."

"Well, that's because life was weird. There was nothing much to celebrate. And, then, you were in it and it was enough just being with you, even though it was really just another night at work. But, our one good Christmas together made me want more. And,for the last two years, I thought that was something I could never have again. I wasn't going to let the flu get in theway of that."

He remembered that Christmas. The one where their relationship was brand new and he did pretty much everything he did, celebration-wise, every year. But, it was different with someone by his side. Mistletoe had meaning, cookies and cocoa were more precious than champagne and caviar and selecting a present somehow meant more than going to a store and purchasing something. It somehow became of symbol of what was in his heart.

It had been the best Christmas of his life.

"What about Ecklie? You were just here a month ago."

"Well, he doesn'thave to worry about me, anymore. I'm kind of…home for good."

"He fired you?"

She smiled."No. I'm sure he'd love to have done that at some point, but… actually was quite nice and understanding. In a smarmy sort of way, of course. The fact that I had about six months of vacation time on the books when they reinstated me had something to do with it, I'm sure. But, you know, he's grown up a little."

Grissom smirked.

"The miracle of Christmas. So,tell me what happened. What prompted you to leave CSI?"

" We had a case the other night. This guy was ready to jump—he actually did jump—off a building. But, Rescue saved him. Anyway, part of his hopelessness stemmed from thinking he was second best and, as I was trying to give him hope, I just remembered when I felt that way. And I was wrong. But, it kind of brought to mind how long we fought for this--what we have now. And I know we were together 24-7, and then you got a job,and I didn't and I still felt really weird about how I left things at the lab. But, this—us—is more important than anything. Besides, my assignment in Vegas was always meant to be a very temporary situation and they are kind of getting back on their feet and interviewing again…and …I just want to be with you. So, Merry Christmas?"

"Are you my present?"

"You tell me."

"You are my greatest gift," he said solemnly.

"Ah, your meds are kicking in again."

He attempted to lift his head off the room was still a little shaky and midnight mass wasn't looking good at the moment.

What was looking good was his wife.


Last year, he not only didn't have a wife, he didn't have a fiance anymore. And this year, life had changed completely. Not only were they in love and married, but she was back. 100% back. No more doubts about herself or the two of them.

He smiled a smile he was pretty sure was drugged and dopey looking. And then he kissed her. The good thing about their long-distance relationship was that moments like these almost felt like they were being experienced for the very first time. Although he hoped their first kiss wasn't quite as sloppy as he was making this one. The problem was he was getting light headed and the room was beginning to spin a bit. Aiming for, and staying with, her mouth became quite the challenge. He moved back and rested his head against her shoulder with a soft, non-erotic moan.

"That was a cute attempt, Gil. But, you'll have to do better than that at a later date. Maybe, by then, Jean-Pierre's handiwork will have grown out a bit. In the meantime, just sleep until it's soup time."

He chuffed a laugh in her shoulder.

God, he felt awful.

And wonderful, at the same time.

He could feel her fingers sliding through the remnants of what once was his curls.

Over and over again.

And he knew the minute Sara-I-don't-sleep-well-after-long-plane-rides-Sidle-Grissom fell asleep.

He wasn't psychic.

He just heard her softly sigh.

And it was the most joyful noise he could imagine on this night before the night before Christmas.

The end

A/N: A discussion on YTDAW made me find a connection between Sara's saving speech and her leaving CSI…so, thank you YTDAW! You always open new doors through our discussions.

I love Jorja Fox and truly appreciate this opportunity to continue seeing her as Sara. But, one major gripe I've had is this long-distance thing with NO mention of Grissom past the first episode. They just went through too much to not make slightly more mention of their continued happiness together. And the situation IS odd. Yes, I know they are odd but, just a year ago, Sara couldn't stand Vegas and Grissom couldn't leave his 20 plus year career, and now they are married and she runs to Vegas and he's okay talking bugs at the Sorbonne? WTF?

Speaking of WTF (not that it's any of my business) but I needed to (teasingly) address William Petersen's new hairdo. Sara's reaction says it all. Even if the man is still hot. We need the curls!

So, anyhow, I know this scenario is total AU, but it's Christmas and it's my world and AU we will be!

All I want for Christmas? A good Grissom mention on CSI that lets us know GSR is alive and well, as always (Sara coming back from a two week vacation in Paris all flushed and bothered—in a good way—would do the trick).

And all I want for all of you good people is a holiday season filled with love and laughter and a happy, healthy new year.

Thanks for your support this past year, as always!