Chapter 24: Under the Mistletoe

I look at the clock, 'Ugh, 8:00! wait, it's CHRISTMAS!' I think. I look up to the bed and see Sidney still asleep with Maggie in his arms. The rest of my pack is stretching, anxious to get outside. I tip toe up stairs and see that everyone but my Pap is still asleep. I peep my head in the living room and whisper a Merry Christmas to him. He looks down from his newspaper and grins, "And a Merry Christmas to you too, young lady." It's a well known fact that I'm his favorite grandchild, he's told me on numerous occasions. I quickly change into jeans and a long sleeve t-shirt in the bathroom. I'm about to go to the living room, when I do a double take. I look out the window and see that it has snowed even more over night! I look out into the back yard at the perfectly untouched snow. 'well, we're going to have to do something about that.' I go back into the living room and see that the rest of my family is up.

"Merry Christmas!" I say, "Hey Ian, do you have that air horn that we woke Mom and Dad up with last year?"

"Yeah," he says in confusion, "Oh, I see, yeah I'll go get it."

After my brother retrieves it from his room we head down into the basement. I get all the dogs outside and Maggie leaves the bed without interrupting Sid.

"Ready?!" I whisper in excitement.

"3...2...1..." my brother counts down.

"EEEEEEERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" I blow the air horn by the bed.

"What the ..." Sid says jumping out of the bed, his hair all tousled from sleep and his eyes open wide in surprise. He looks around for a moment and sees Ian and I, rolling on the floor laughing hysterically.

"You two scared the shit out of me," He says.

"OH, my God, that was even better than Mom and Dad, last year." I say gasping for air.

"Oh, definitely, I'll go let the dogs in and meet you two upstairs,"Ian says trying to over come his laughter.

"You did that to your parents last year?!" Sid asks in shock.

"Yeah, needless to say they woke up pretty early this year." I say struggling to stop my laughter.

"It wasn't funny,"Sid says trying not to smile.

"Are you kidding, it was hilarious!" I laugh.

"I'll show you hilarious," he says tackling me onto the bed, and preceding to tickle me.

"Oh my God, Sid, stop. I can't breath!" I laugh gasping for air. He finally lets me up and I wipe tears of laughter from my eyes.

"Okay, now let's go open presents!" I say tugging Sid's hand to fallow me.

"Have you had coffee this morning?" he asks with a yawn.

"Are you kidding me? I can go for a couple hours with out coffee on Christmas."

"That's apparent," he says fallowing me up the stairs.

We begin to open present. My brother of course, loves the Tom Brady jersey I got him, he is known as a traitor in our household, somehow my parents went wrong, because he turned out to be a Patriots fan instead of a Steeler's fan. I told him if he ever became a Flyer's fan, he would be disowned from the family. Sid opens the gift I got him.

"Sweet! Wii games, I challenge you to the NHL game as soon as we get home!" he says grinning, "A Nike shirt? I thought we discussed this, Reebok is better."

"I figured I'd add some variety to your wardrobe," I laugh as he hands me two neatly wrapped gifts.

"Oh my God, a Starbucks gift basket with about a billion flavors! It's a shame I don't like coffee,"I sigh sarcastically.

"Yeah, I knew you'd like it."he smiles.

I open the other one and laugh out loud. It's a framed photo of all my dogs wearing Penguin jerseys. They all have their backs to the camera so you can see who's jersey it is, and Flash has his head turned around looking at the camera. Bran has on Sidney's, Koda has on Jordan's, Maggie has Flower's, Hawkeye has Max, and Flash has on Colby's.

"Oh, Sid I love this, when did you take this?" I ask.

"When we all came over last week, I figured you would like it," he grins.

"Are you kidding me I love it, thank you!" I say giving him a hug, "Oh I almost forgot. Mom, Dad, this is for you."

My mother slowly opens it, to reveal a painting of a beach scene in the sunset. A starry night starts at the top and slowly fades into the red oranges of a sun, setting behind the vast ocean with two sail boats sailing it's calm waters.

"Oh, Caitlin this is gorgeous, it will be perfect for the bedroom," she gasps.

"That is beautiful, where did you get it," Sid asks.

"I painted it," I reply shyly.

"You painted that?!"he asks astounded.

"How long did this take you,"my dad asks.

"About 2 months,"I reply.

"You never told me you were and artist?" Sid says as we walk away from the group, so I can get a cup of coffee.

"I don't usually tell anyone. If I hadn't worked with dogs, I would be in an art studio," I shrug.

"Wow, I had no idea."

"It's no big deal. Well I'm going to go outside while my Grandma and Mom get breakfast. I would help, but I usually end up taking over the kitchen and getting kicked out anyways, so I figure I'll save them the trouble."

After playing out in the snow for a half hour, I come back into eat breakfast. Before I know it it's 2 o'clock and we're getting ready to go to my other grandparents house.

We park in the drive way of their house which is tucked away in the woods, much different than the my other grandparents who live in the suburb.

I step out of the car and see the picturesque snow scene with the snow covered pine trees and the little house.

"Okay, will go in and say hi. Then I'll take you for a walk in the field, before my Aunt and Uncle come."I say.


After introducing Sid to my Grandparents, who basically have no idea who he is, I hurry outside.

Come on let's go I say leading him to a path cut in the wooded part behind the house. I can't see the snow covered path, but I know it's there. We go up the steep hill and come to an opening. There my Grandad has created a bird sanctuary, with paths cut out between trees and thicket.
I get to the clearing before you enter, "the field", and stand there for a minute taking it all in.

"Wow, it's so peaceful up here," Sid whispers.

"This is my most favorite place in the world,"I say quietly.

I show him around taking him to where the blue birds make their nest every year, and where all the pets are buried. I tell him stories of my childhood, how the tree with the low branches created a magic tunnel, and how we would have praying mantis counting contests in the fall. We are about to head back down, I look at the field one last time, until Easter.

"You really love it here don't you?"he asks quietly pulling me into a hug.

"I really do,"I sigh into his chest. I had always loved my childhood and this place especially brought back a ton of memories.

"You need to come see my favorite place in the world. I have a lake off my house in Nova Scotia and you should see the sun come up on the lake. There were a few times that I slept on the dock, and then watched the sunrise in the morning," He says sighing.

"I'd like that," I smile looking up at him.

We head back down the path from which we came and I see that my Aunts and Uncles have arrived.

"Alright, so my Aunt Mary and Uncle Jeff are the ones who got me into hockey again when I was 16, they might go a little crazy when they see you."

"Great," he replies rolling his eyes but then grinning.

True to what I said, as soon as we walk into the house my Aunt says, "Holy crap, it's Sidney Crosby!"

After the introductions, the hockey talk subsides for a little bit and it's time for dinner.
My dad and my aunt go up stairs, Sid goes to get up, but I hold him back.

"Nuh, uh, not yet." I say simply, getting back to the monopoly game I'm currently engaged in with my cousins and brother.

"But your grandma said, it's dinner time," he says very confused.

"Not yet, it'll be another ten minutes. First she won't be able to open the wine bottle so it will be handed to either my dad or my uncle. And then she'll realize that we have enough places set, but we don't have enough chairs. Oh damn." I say as I realize I've landed on my brother's property.

"Ha! $25.oo please," he says sticking his hand out for me to pay him, "Sid she's right, they'll search all over the house for chairs and come up with two stools and a rickety old wooden chair that's how it is every year."

"And then my mom will say, "we should have brought those white fold up chairs we have in the basement.""my cousin continues.

"Uh, oh. We don't have enough chairs," I hear my Grandmother say.

"Told you,"I say moving 3 spaces.

Finally we commence with eating, telling stories of past Christmases and holidays. Finally, after opening presents, we all lay in the living room by the fire filled to the brim with dinner, listening to my Grandfather's stories about how he grew up on the rough side of town, which are always entertaining and funny. I slip away to get a refill on my coffee.

"Hey," I say as I see Sid enter the kitchen, "Are you having a good time?"

"Yeah, I'm having a blast. These past two days have been amazing, thanks for letting me come."

"My pleasure, I liked showing you a piece of my life."

"This house is so cozy and welcoming."

"Yeah, I know. I just hope that one day, I'll have my children and grandchildren over like this, and have this same cozy feeling around." I smile taking a sip of my coffee.

"Caitlin, will you get a few more pieces of fire wood, from the backroom, I want to uses that up before I use the stuff outside," my Grandad calls up, pausing before continuing on with his story.

"Sure, just a minute," I call back down, "You can help me carry a few logs down."

"Alright,"Sid sighs fallowing me into the back room.

"Oh, there's only 2 logs left," I say looking at the pile.

"Is that mistletoe?" I hear Sid ask as he looks up at the door frame above us.

Butterflies attack my stomach upon hearing his words, ' stop it girl, he's engaged,' I think to myself.

"Umm... yeah, my grandmother always hides it some place in the house, it's another tradition," I say looking at the floor.

"Caitlin, I..." he starts to say. I look up at him and immediately my eyes connect with his hazel ones. He looks from my eyes to my lips, taking a step closer to me. His hand cups my jaw and he slowly lowers his lips to mine, my eyelids flutter shut. Our lips gently meet and the moment they touch, it's like an electric current going through me. He puts an arm around my waist pulling me closer to his body, and I snake my arms around his neck half because I might fall over his kiss makes me so weak in the knees. It feels incredible to be in his arms again, feeling his hard muscles against me, with him kissing me so deeply.

"Caitlin! Are you bringing the wood down!"I hear my grandad call up.

Suddenly, reality comes back to me as if some one slapped me, and it hurts even worse. Sid and I pull away at the same time, breathless and at a complete loss for words. I take a deep breath and then call back.

"Yeah, I'll be right down,"hoping that my words don't shake with the emotion going through me. I pick up the logs and head out the door.

"I'll... um... get your coffee," Sid says clearing his throat.

August 25, 2008 at Monday, August 25, 2008

8 Comments to "Chapter 24: Under the Mistletoe"

Posted by Anonymous ( August 25, 2008 at 8:48 PM )

soo good. i love this story.
and school blows. good luck with it though!!


I'm loving this story!!!

post more when you can

Posted by Anonymous ( August 26, 2008 at 10:01 AM )

OMG - they kissed, they kissed!!! I'm beaming right now, and pratically jumping up and down.
I loved the chapter... and I think Sid is starting to realize that he would have it so good with Caitlin. =) Great job!!

OHMYGOD! THEY KISSED! Finally! Thank god for the mistletoe! I really hope he realizes that he's IN LOVE with Caitlin! That was an awesome chapter, please post more and good luck with school.

YAYYYYYYYY! Gotta love Grandma for leaving the mistletoe out! :)

Can't wait to see what happens next....more soon please! :)

Posted by Anonymous ( August 27, 2008 at 7:47 PM )

No fair! You can't leave us hanging like that!

Word! Lol! I loved this chapter.
Well I finally got my story up. Finally lol.
I can't wait for an update.

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Discovering...Love? by AS is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.