The idea for this story came to me at about 2am. When I hadn’t gotten back to sleep by 4, I got up and wrote it.
“What’s wrong, Starsk? You seem kind of tense tonight.”
“I’m just gettin’ a little tired of it, Hutch. That’s all.”
“Tired of what?”
“Them! The ones who’re watchin’ all the time. Lookin’ over our shoulders. Writin’ their stories and lettin’ their friends read ’em.”
“Yeah. I mean, what’s wrong with all the other shows? Why do they have to write about us all the time?”
“They don’t, Starsk. Fandom’s huge. There are millions of stories out there. Only a tiny proportion are about us.”
“Well, ours are the only ones I know about.”
Lula Belle Smithers, possessing a booming voice and a bosom any sea going vessel would be proud to have on its bow, narrowed her eyes and pointed at the clear evidence of a crime. “It’s obvious, isn’t it?”
“What’s obvious?” Hutch asked, appropriately serious.
“That they took it!” Mrs. Smithers’ sister-in-Christ, Eugenie McKechnie, fumed. She crossed her arms over her sensible brown cloth coat, the small brown hat complete with a brown swallow bouncing slightly on her stiff black hair.
Hutch took the bait, damn him.
“Those people across the street.” Mrs. Smithers sniffed contemptuously, waving a hand to the right as if she couldn’t quite look in that direction. Her enormous black beehive hairdo quivered in sympathetic indignation. Or it could have been the wind. “They kidnapped our Lord Savior.”
Across the street was the Temple Beth Shalom on 95th and Washington, with the six-foot menorah in the front. Directly opposite the emerald green lawn of the Church of Jesus the Savior, which currently hosted a nativity scene, complete with plastic lambs, cows, angels, shepherds, wisemen, and the Holy family–minus one.
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‘Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house,
Starsky paced slowly, “Where’s Hutch? What a louse!”
The stockings were hung by the cone fireplace with care,
In hopes that Ken Hutchinson soon would be there;
When out on the street there arose such a clatter,
Starsky sprang to the window to see what was the matter;
With a sputter, a backfire, and grinding of clutch,
Starsky immediately knew it was the man known as Hutch;
His eyes how they sparkled, legs long and lean,
He carried a pot steaming with soup called Black Bean;
Starsky sprang to the door, quickly grabbing the soup,
“What were you thinking? Black beans make me poop!”
“Enough with the health food! We’re eating cookies and candy!
If you want a smoothie, I’m spiking it with brandy.”
Starsky spoke not another word and went straight to his work,
Mixed Hutch a drink, and then turned with a jerk;
Then raising a finger, he exclaimed with delight,
“Let’s open presents! It’s Christmas Eve night!”
He presented dear Hutch with a gift, wrapped with great care,
Hutch smiled, shook it slightly, but uncovered no clue to what was there;
He secretly hoped for a plaid shirt or tight fitting sweat suit,
But knowing Starsky’s humor, it could be a stale cake of dried fruit;
Hutch clawed at the wrapping and began tearing it apart,
But Starsky stopped him, put his hand on his, and spoke straight from the heart;
“If I were a rich man, I would give you a sculpture of bronze.”
“Instead,” he grinned, “I bought you matching tight, red long johns!”
So off to the bathroom Ken Hutchinson flew,
To change into long johns, and Starsky did too;
Then, with a wink of his eye and a turn of his head,
Starsky announced there was a book to be read;
“Now, DASHER! now, DANCER! now, PRANCER and VIXEN!
On, COMET! on CUPID! on, DONNER and the BLONDE BLINTZ-EN!
To the top of the porch! To the top of the wall!
Now dash away, dash away dash away all!”
Hutch grinned just a bit, and tousled Starsky’s mop,
He felt pretty blessed getting paired with this crazy cop;
Two detectives in tight, red long johns. What a glorious sight!
Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.
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Click here to play the puzzle.
Door bell rings, Hutch is listenin’
In his pants, his cock is glistenin’
It’s his turn tonight
And Starsky’s in sight
Writin’ in a fanfic wonderland.
In the bedroom, Hutch pulls out a new tube
Christmas scented, a grin he just can’t hide
Soon a finger’s inside slick with the lube
And Starsky knows gonna be a long ride.
Later on, when they’ve perspired
And they’ve set each one on fire
They’ve frolicked, now they’ll sleep
Hutch’s cock is still in deep
Writin’ in a fanfic wonderland.
“Aww, come on Hutch!” Starsky begged, staring across the desk to his partner with those big blue eyes, “come on home and watch Rudolf with me. You are gonna love it, I promise!”
Hutch rolled he eyes and threw down the pencil he had been chewing in frustration. The last thing he wanted to do tonight was watch a Christmas special, especially about a red-nosed reindeer! He could think of things much better to do, like folding underwear.
Starsky bounced from his chair, grabbing the ever present piggy bank as he perched on the corner of Hutch’s desk. “It’ll be fun and you know it,” he said. “It can be the start of a new Christmas tradition for us!”
“Starsky, we don’t have any Christmas traditions.” Hutch said, pulling the chewed up pencil from under Starsky’s backside, wondering if he should continue to chew it. Deciding the pencil would be best used like it should be, he tried, once again, to finish the report on his desk.
“Exactly why we should start tonight!” Starsky said loudly while batting Hutch on the arm. “That’s the great thing about Christmas, it’s the best time to enjoy old traditions and start new one! Please Hutch, please,” that last plea said quietly, for his ears only.
Looking up from his report, Hutch looked at Starsky, seeing how important this was to his partner. And, that was all he needed to make his decision, “OK Starsk, I’ll come over and watch the show with you. But, once it is over, I am heading back home, I have… laundry to do,” he said sheepishly.
“Great, this is great, Hutch!” Starsky said jumping off the desk, excitement in every step he made. “OK, hurry and finish that report, we need to get outta here, go get dinner, and be back at my place by eight. Oh, and I need to stop by the store and get some popcorn, we gotta have popcorn, and then…” Starsky stopped in mid-sentence looking at his blond partner. “Hutch, whatta ya doin’? Hurry, finish the report, we gotta go!”
“Starsky,” Hutch said quietly, “we drove separately today, remember?”
For a brief moment, Starsky stood in the middle of the squad room, a bewildered look on his face, still clutching the Piggy Bank. “Oh yeah,” he said, realization dawning, “that’s right, we did.” And then, the energy bundle known as Starsky was off again. “That’s even better! We can divide and conquer! You finish the report, stop for pizza and beer, I’ll run by the store for popcorn, and we can meet at my place with time to spare.”
And Starsky turned, heading out of the squad room, duties assigned, and a mission to accomplish.
“Starsk,” came the exasperated call of his partner.
“What, Hutch?” Starsky answered back with the same exasperation.
“The bank,” Hutch said pointing to the Piggy Bank still being carried by Starsky. “You gonna leave that here or is Piggy going to be joining us in this new tradition?”
Starsky looked at the bank he was still carrying in his arms. Giggling a little, he walked back to the desk area he and Hutch shared and placed the bank in its spot between the two desks. As he left, Starsky walked behind Hutch and placed his hand on Hutch’s shoulder. No words needed to be spoken, Hutch smiled as he accepted Starsky’s unspoken thanks, realizing how much this did indeed mean to his friend.
Within a second, Starsky swung the door open, a grin splitting his face, and a red Christmas hat perched atop his curly, brunette head. “Ho, Ho, Hutch, come on in! The show’s gonna be starting soon.” And Starsky was off, the pointy end of the red cap swinging around and slapping Hutch in the face. And, was that bells? The hat had bells on it that jingled as Starsky bounced.
Hutch groaned inwardly. “Yep,” he thought, “it is definitely going to be a long night.”
“Here, Hutch, put the pizzas on the table,” Starsky said pushing aside various assortment of Christmas decorations.
“Starsky, what are you doing with all this stuff?” Hutch asked warily. Somehow, he had the feeling that he had been suckered into a Christmas decorating mission, with the elf in charge running around in full gear, the hat jingling away.
“Oh that,” Starsky said, his head buried in the bottom of a closet, the sound of boxes and other items being moved around, “just a few decorations. I have one more box, m’looking for it. It’s got the tree stuff in it.”
“Tree, what tree? I don’t see a tree?” Hutch said looking around the room. More and more, he knew he was being suckered into decorating detail.
“Out there, on the front deck, in a bucket of water,” said the muffled voice, a hand coming out long enough to point in the general direction of the deck.
Hutch walked by Starsky, strongly resisting the temptation to push him into the closet and leave for the night. Folding laundry was really sounding good about now, it really was. Looking out, Hutch saw there really was a tree. “Yep,” Hutch thought, “I’ve been suckered by a bouncing curly headed elf with a jingly red hat on.”
“Ah ah!” came the voice from the closet, “found it! Now we can decorate the tree before Rudolf comes on. See Hutch… another tradition started!” Starsky said, dragging the box from the closet, the red hat almost falling off his head.
“Yeah,” Hutch muttered, “another tradition.”
“Aww, don’t be such a Scrooge. I know you think Christmas is too comerlized and fake. But, ya gotta try and loosen up — just a little bit and enjoy the season!” Starsky said, throwing that million watt smile of his toward Hutch.
“Starsky, the word is commercialized. And, yes it’s hard for me to get into all this gimmicky stuff,” Hutch said throwing his hands up, wondering how he could make Starsky understand.
“But Hutch, it’s not gimmicky — it’s tradition, it’s family, it’s being together, don’t you understand?” Starsky asked quietly.
Hutch looked at Starsky, seeing the childlike innocence of his partner coming through. Even with all the terrible things they had seen on the job and in life, Hutch still marveled at how Starsky could drum it all down to just a few words — tradition, family, being together.
“Okay, Starsk,” Hutch said, smiling, “let’s get ready for Christmas.”
An hour or so later, the tree was up, lights were on and twinkling, and the decorations had been hung and placed out. Standing back, both the brunette and blond elf (who had somehow acquired a hat of his own), looked at the tree admiring the work. Hutch even admitted to himself that the tree looked good, giving him a warm, peaceful feeling.
Suddenly, Starsky was in bouncing mode again. “Hutch, go turn the TV on; Rudolf is coming on in just a few minutes. Be right back. I gotta get the popcorn fixed.”
Heading to the den, Hutch bent to cut the TV on. “Hey Starsk, I really don’t want any popcorn. I’m still full from the pizza and beer,” he said, adjusting the TV.
“We ain’t gonna eat it, dummy, we are gonna string it for the tree. We can do it while watching the show,” Starsky yelled from the kitchen. “Don’t tell me you never strung popcorn for your tree?” he asked in amazement.
Hutch thought back on all the prim and proper Christmas years at his home in Minnesota. Popcorn on a tree? His mother and father would have been completely embarrassed. “No Starsky, we didn’t do popcorn in Minnesota,” Hutch said.
“Well, you are gonna find out how fun it is tonight, trust me,” Starsky said rushing back to the den, a bucket of popcorn in one hand, thread in the other.
Hutch sat there, watching Starsky smile and sing as the show came on. How one man could get so caught up in a show about a red-nosed reindeer, Hutch could not understand. Starsky was singing with Santa, and giggled when the abominable snowman first came on.
“Hey, Hutch, did ya know that Bumbles bounce? They do, just wait and see!” Starsky said, the hat jingling with his laughter.
Starsky’s laughter brought Hutch out his memory. “What’s so funny?” Hutch asked.
“Herbie’s boss, the chief elf,” Starsky said snickering. “Remind you of someone we know?”
Hutch listened to the chief elf ordering and yelling at the little elves around, trying to get them in line. He thought for a second and then burst out laughing, looking at Starsky, they both said “Dobey!” It took the next commercial break before they could get their laughter and the tears that came with it under control.
“Hey, shh, it’s coming back on,” Starsky said.
“Yeah, Elf Dobey is gonna yell more orders out!” Hutch said through more laughter.
Giggling, Starsky agreed and swatted Hutch’s hands from the popcorn. “Hey,” he said, “that’s for stringin’, not eating!”
“Well, then let’s get stringing,” Hutch said.
For the next bit, the guys strung popcorn and watched the show. Of course, there was as much eating as there was stringing. And, a little fussing when the string broke and popcorn ended up all over the floor, in the couch and in their laps. And, then, a popcorn fight broke out during another commercial break — anarchy was upon them.
They watched in silence, munching and stringing popcorn as Rudolph and Herbie met up and decided to be partners, misfits together, them against the world.
And, then Cornelius showed up — looking for silver and gold. Starsky and Hutch looked at each other and said “Huggy” at the same time. Again, falling into peals and peals of laughter!
They watched the rest of the show in Christmas fun, stringing the popcorn, singing with the show. And, Hutch found himself actually liking this silly little reindeer. Hutch was like that growing up, not quite fitting in with the rest, trying hard to be what his father wanted him to be. And those reindeer games, being laughed at and taunted like that, Hutch remembered those things, too. But, he also remembered deciding to be his own man, to do what he wanted to do. Looking at Starsky, he realized that he had been able to do those things with the help and love of his partner. Maybe it wasn’t so bad to be a misfit after all.
Finally, Rudolph had saved Christmas, Santa was in the air, and all the toys, including the misfits, were heading to new homes.
And, somehow, most of the popcorn had managed to make it on the string. Working together, in friendship quiet, Starsky and Hutch placed the popcorn on the tree.
“And,” Hutch thought to himself, “it actually looks good.”
Suddenly, Hutch noticed that all the Christmas joy Starsky had felt earlier seemed to have left him. Starsky was staring at the tree, touching and caressing the ornaments that hung there.
“I used to feel like those misfits,” Starsky said quietly. “When I came here after my dad died. I tried so hard to fit it, to be one of the boys around here. But, could not do it. Oh, I had friends, but I always still felt like an outsider, no matter how hard I tried.”
Hutch’s heart broke as he saw his best friend relive the pain that was still strong to this day. Hutch walked over and placed his hand on Starsky’s shoulder, letting his friend know he was there for him.
Starsky smiled and reached up to grab Hutch’s hand while still staring at the tree lights. “Ya know, Hutch, you are my Rudolph. You pulled me out of the snow, just like Rudolph did with Herbie. You took me in, let me be your friend, and loved me for who I am when no one else would. You’ve stayed with me through the good and the bad; ya never turned your back on me.”
Turning, Starsky looked up at Hutch, “You’re my friend Hutch, my best friend, and I love ya. I know you think all the Christmas stuff is silly, but it’s a family tradition, and I wanted to share it with you, ’cause you are my family.”
Then, it dawned on Hutch why Christmas meant so much to Starsky. It was an affirmation that there was still goodness, love, and friendship in the world. Starsky, who had lost so much when his dad died and was sent out here, was still able to find joy in Christmas. And, for Hutch, that joy in his best friend was all he needed to finally understand Christmas too. Traditions, decorations, songs, and shows about a red-nosed reindeer — it was the joy of life — of the giving Christmas spirit. All wrapped up in the elf known as Starsky.
“Merry Christmas Starsky,” Hutch said to Starsky. “Merry Christmas, my friend!”