*Auditioned story.* Sorry, when I said I was leaving, I completely forgot about this fic.
Everyone was at the table for dinner tonight, which was rare. Usually 1 or 2 of the older kids were gone because of work, or the occasional outing with their friends or girlfriends. Gerard looked at his 6 other siblings' faces with an unreadable expression. He was struggling, and as the oldest member of the Way children he felt responsible for their state. It made him feel terrible that the 3 oldest, Alex, Mazy, and Mikey had to work and worry about their financial state like he did. Every month they brought in at least $3,000, but take away expenses for food, rent, utilities, and other things like gas, and they only had $200 dollars left for the month.
Usually this was fine, but it was December the 18th, and Christmas was in one week. For all 6 of his younger siblings to get what they wanted, it would cost about $450. Not including the younger kids' presents from Santa. They had $350 saved up for the month, and Gerard had been getting less than 4 hours of sleep a night to produce as many paintings as he could to sell before the week was up. It wasn’t easy. Gerard finished eating his meal of Rice-A-Roni, corn, mashed potatoes and unseasoned, baked chicken listening to his siblings talk about their day.
“Today we got to watch The Grinch with Gee!” Shayla said excitedly.
“Oh, yeah! And then he took us to the park!” Hollie added in.
“Did he?” Alex, one of the older kids asked, looking at her older brother who looked like he might fall asleep any second.“How nice of him.”
“Gee, how much sleep have you gotten lately?” Mikey asked, concerned.
“I got 3 hours last night.” He yawned, stuffing a mouthful of mashed potatoes into his mouth for eveyone to see.
“All for your paintings?” Mazy asked, sipping some water from her glass.
“No, all for C-H-R-I-S-T-M-A-S.” Gerard spelled, knowing the younger kids wouldn’t know what they were talking about.
“How much do we have save up?” Mazy asked.
“$350.” Gerard answered. “And we don’t even have a tree yet. That’s why I’ve been working so hard lately.”
“Listen, Gee.” Mikey said, swallowing a bite of tasteless chicken. “Go to the gallery tomorrow, and sell as many as you can. I’ll stay with Hozzie, Shayla, and Mia. Then, when you get back, go to sleep until you’re rested. We can figure the rest out later.” Gerard opened his mouth to argue, but Mikey cut him off. “Don’t argue, you’re a zombie, man. Now go to sleep, or paint or whatever.” Mikey dismissed. “How many paintings have you not sold yet?”
“5.” Gerard answered. Mikey nodded, accepting his amswer. Alex collected their plates, and put them next to the sink.
“Mazy, do you mind doing the dishes? I’m going to help the girls clean their rooms.”
“Yeah, no problem. And Mikey if you could tidy up the living room and bathroom, that’d be great.” Mikey nodded, and got up to compplete his task. “You, Gee, just go to bed.” She demanded. She didn’t like seeing her older brother like this. He yawned and trudged to his room.
It was now Christmas eve, and everyone was over, including Mikey and Gerard’s girlfriends, Callie and Tiara. They were decorating cookies Tiara had brought, and everyone was laughing and having a good time, except for Gerard and Tiara, who were in Mikey and Gerard’s room talking.
“I finally sold all of my paintings, so I got the tree and all of their presents. Want to help me wrap them?” Gerard asked.
“Sure!” She said, helping Gerard grab big bags of stuff from his closet from various stores. He poured everything on the floor, and she grabbed the wrapping paper, scissors, and tape. They wrapped in silence, there was a list of what was for who so she didn’t have to ask.
"Ya know, I felt like I was drowning there for a while financially. Especially this month. But Mikey got a raise, and Mazy got a holiday bonus. Then I sold my paintings, and I finally felt… safe. After I got all of this, I actually paid for the utilities in advance. It just felt so… good to be able to do that.”
“I know what you mean.” Tiara said quietly, rubbing his arm in comfort. “I’m so proud of you all. This is the most tight knit family I’ve ever seen, and it’s very refreshing. I’m the most proud of you, taking care of everything, and watching the kids and painting the way you do. It must be exhausting.” Tiara said sympathetically.
“Oh it is.” Gerard said. “You have no idea.”
They left it at that, and kept wrapping until Tiara found a necklace. It was silver with a small beautiful anchor on it, incrusted with blue stones. Tiara stroked it longingly, and looked up. “Who’s is this?” She asked, grabbing a bag and filling paper.
Gerard smiled. “That’s yours.”
“Really?” She asked, a smile lighting up her face.
“Yeah, I saw it at the mall, and I had to get it.”
“Thank you. It’s beautiful.” She said, holding it delicately in her hands. “Will you help me put it on?” She asked, unclasping it, and moving her hair out of the way.
“Of course.” Gerard smiled, placing it around her neck, and clasping it. Gerard looked at her with the necklace on and grinned. “It looks great on you.” He complimented. Tiara felt herself blush.
“Thanks.” She said, closing the minimal distance between them with a kiss. It was light and sweet. Meaningful. Then Gerard handed her something else. Something square. Tiara took the paper protecting it off, and it was a portrait of her looking out a window, her face filled with longing, and hope. They were having a really nice moment just looking at each other, having an unspoken conversation until Hollie opened the door quickly and yelled “Shayla ate all of your pink edible glitter!” and ran away giggling. They quickly hid the presents from Santa, and Tiara found Shayla.
“So I heard you ate all of my glitter.” Tiara accused with a smile.
“Nuh-uh.” Shayla denied, a huge grin on her face.
“Then why do I see glitter in your teeth and on your face?” Tiara asked, chasing her.
“I don’t know, leave me alone! Everything you see is a lie!” She giggled, running.
“Is that so? And not until I get you for eating my glitter, muchkin!” She said, catching the small girl easily, and tickling her.
“Stop it! Stop it! I’m sorry!” Shayla laughed, kicking her legs wildly.
“Do you promise?” Tiara asked, ticking her more intensely.Shayla shrieked in laughter.
“Yes, yes!” She squeaked.
“Alright then.” Tiara said simply. “Now show me your cookies!”
Christmas morning had arrived, and when the younger kids fell asleep the older kids put the presents under the tree, and ate the cookies that were left for Santa.
“Oh my God, these are so good!” Alex said quietly, grabbing another cookie.
“I know!” Callie exclaimed in a whisper. Tiara ate quietly with a smile, looking at the portraits on the Way's walls, painted by Gee.
“Ooh, who made this one?” Mikey asked, holding up a hot pink star.
“I did.” Tiara said. The cookie was hot pink, with glitter on it (She always brought back up), and pearl sprinkles. “You can have it Mikey.” She smiled, even though she wanted it. That’s ok, she could enjoy her baking whenever she wanted.
Now however, it was morning and the kids woke everyone up jumping up and down on them.
“Santa came, Santa came!” Mia exclaimed. “Get up, get up!”
“We’re getting up!” Mazy said, irritated her sleep was being cut short. The little ones ran into the living room and squealed.
“No opening anything until we get in there!” Gerard yelled. His mouth happened to be next to Tiara’s ear, and she recoiled from the loud noise.
“Damn, Gerard.” Callie yawned, snuggling back into Mikey. They all eventually got up, and made their way to the living room where the kids had already opened their presents, despite Gerard’s yelling.
“Lookie Alex, I got sparkly Crayons, AND a My Little Pony coloring book!” Shayla said excitedly while Alex held her.
“Are you gonna color me a picture?” Alex asked. Shayla nodded furiously and began on her task, being extra careful with her new activity. Gerard watched Hollie and Mia play with their new dolls, with a smile. The dolls were expensive, $75 apiece. He hoped they didn’t break them.
“Wanna open yours, Gerard?” Tiara asked, surprising him with a beautifully wrapped gift. “Callie and I got something for the rest of you, too. They’re on the table.” Tiara announced, smiling. Everyone made their way to the table except Gerard, Mikey, Callie and herself.
“You got me something?” He asked in surprise.
“Well of course I did!” Tiara smiled, kissing his cheek. “Open it.” She said excitedly.
When Gerard opened his present, he gaped. Inside were a complete set of brushes and a water color palette. But they weren’t just any brushes and palette, they were the VangoughOriginals brand, each brush was priced at $15, and the palette was $30.
“These are… amazing!” Gerard exclaimed, stroking the brushes as if they were made of pure gold.
“Well, I remembered you telling me how your brushes were falling apart, and you were almost out of paint.” She explained.
“You shouldn’t have. They’re so expensive!”
“Hey, at least you know they’ll last!” She smiled. He grabbed her face and kissed her passionately. She returned the kiss. “Merry Christmas.” She smiled. “Oh, and Callie! You might wanna open Mikey’s present before mine!” She called.
The kids ran back into the living room, engulfing Tiara into a sea of hugs and thank you’s. “You’re welcome.” She smiled, hugging each of them. They ran over to Callie and did the same thing, actually knocking her over with their momentum.
Callie giggled. "Get offa me!"
“What did you get?” Gerard asked them. “Show me!” They giggled and ran off to collect their gifts while Alex stroked hers unbelievingly.
“You shouldn’t have.” Was all she said, as she stroked her new violin in awe.
“Well, we saved up for Christmas all year, and had plenty to spare.” Callie smiled, getting back up.
“Look, Gee!” Shayla said, showing him her gift. “Tiara and Callie got me a Barbie!” Shayla beamed showing off her new 2012 deluxe holiday Barbie. The doll sported jet black curls and an extravagant red, jewel embroided dress.
“Ooh, pretty Say.” Gerard complimented. “Mia what did you get?”
“I gotta super huge teddy bear!” Mia said, trying to carry a bear that was three times her size. The bear was a light brown color with a big red bow around his neck.
“Wow, Mia!” Gerard said. “Be careful! Don't fall or hit your head. Hollie what did you get?”
“I gotta big comic book like yours, Gee!” Hollie beamed proudly, showing him the Batman graphic novel she’d received.
“Awesome! Looks like you got a new bed time story, huh? One with lots of pictures.” Hollie shook her head animatedly. Mikey came and gave Tiara a hug.
“Thanks for the CD, I’ve been dying for it. Oh, and thanks for the passes! Callie’s practically having a heart attack!” Mikey said referring to the Metallica backstage passes she had gotten them to go with the concert tickets Mikey had bought. Tiara looked over to one of her best friends who was staring at both the tickets and passes in awe. She sat completely still, and made no noise.
They all heard some music coming from one of the rooms, and Tiara smiled. For Christmas Mazy had received a rare record player from her family, and from Callie, she had gotten a record to play.
“No problem.” She smiled. “I hope you guys have a great time! And Callie, you'd better take a load of pictures.” Tiara grinned. Callie nodded, and her and Mikey shared a moment.
Gerard looked at her. “All of this must have cost a fortune. Why did you guys do it?” He asked.
“I told you, we’ve been saving up all year, and like to make people smile. Plus, we thought it'd be fun. This was all Callie's idea.”
It was 7 o’clock, and everyone was in the living room with a cup of hot cocoa in their hands watching A Christmas Story. Everyone had gotten what they wanted, and now they just enjoyed each-others company. It had turned out to be a great holiday.
A/N: Hopefully this isn't higly illiterate. Merry Christmas, everyone!