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06 September 2007 @ 09:25 pm
The Five Holidays To Show You Care [The OC; Ryan/Kirsten]  
TITLE: The Five Holidays To Show You Care
PART 3/5: New Year's
PAIRING: Ryan/Kirsten
SPOILERS: Season three and four


03. "Ugh, I wanna go to New York," a very tipsy Summer Roberts whined, watching the crowd in Times Square getting ready for the New Year's countdown, which was less than ten minutes away.

Ryan laughed when she subsequently reached out and whacked Seth (who was beyond drunk) in the shoulder, jarring him awake. He snorted sleepily. "Huh? What?"

"Why won't you take me to New York?" she griped loudly, smacking him again.

"Maybe because you hit me all the time," Seth complained, covering his face with a nearby throw pillow. "Is the party over yet?"

"Yeah, Seth," Ryan deadpanned, watching Summer start to tip toward her boyfriend, sleepy-eyed. "Party's over. Bedtime now."

"Mmkay," he mumbled, and was snoring in moments.

Ryan shook his head at the two of them and rose from his seat, draining the last few drops of sparkling apple cider from his champagne flute. He'd opted for the non-alcoholic drinks tonight so that Kirsten would have a helping hand with the party. Sandy was supposed to be helping her for the evening -- it was his decision to throw a party for New Year's this year, after all -- but he'd gotten a call from Matt not long after nine o'clock and had left. Which greatly displeased Kirsten, but she just let it slide off her shoulders. As if she didn't have the energy to fight with him anymore.

After unbuttoning the cuffs of his sleeves and rolling them up to his elbows, Ryan grabbed a garbage bag from under the kitchen sink. He picked up the stray cups and plates in the kitchen and family room, resolving to help Kirsten toss the leftover food out in the morning. After tying off the now-full garbage bag, he took it out the front door with him to the trash can. That was when he spotted Kirsten, standing on the other side of the driveway, just staring out at the neighborhood.

Ryan furrowed his brows. "Kirsten?"

Her long blonde hair glided across her shoulders as she turned her head to look at him. "Hey, Sweetie," she called affectionately.

Ryan had never enjoyed pet names or terms of endearment his entire life. Theresa had never used them, and he had forbid Marissa from using them, but for some reason with Kirsten, he didn't mind. "What are you doing out here?"

"Thinking," she replied cryptically, holding her locket between her thumb and forefinger with one hand while her other held her cell phone. She pulled it up and checked the call screen, as if she had missed an important call in the last thirty seconds.

"'Bout what?" he asked, making a face at himself seconds afterward. How redundant. It was obvious what she was thinking about, especially since she was checking her phone every ten seconds.

"Just... lots of things," she sighed. Then, she turned to him and posed an almost-philosophical question. "Ever feel like your whole life is one giant mistake?"

His eyebrows flicked upward briefly and he pursed his lips before replying simply, "No."

Apparently that wasn't the answer Kirsten was looking for. She huffed and let her arm holding the phone rest at her side. "Sometimes I do."

He ambled over to her slowly, hands in the pockets of his black pleated dress pants. "What do you mean?"

She was still clutching her locket in one hand and Ryan almost smiled -- she'd been doing that a lot in the past week, ever since he'd given it to her. And since they not-so-accidentally kissed beneath the mistletoe, which they still hadn't talked about. Any feelings that had stirred up were carefully swept under the rug for the time-being. Any time one of them so much as tried to broach the subject, there'd be an interruption of some kind.

"I don't know what I mean," she sighed, drawing Ryan from his kiss-related thoughts. "I just... I feel like my whole life is a mistake. I mean, my marriage is basically on life support because of this damned hospital thing, I yelled at my father right before he died, and then there was all the drinking, and--"

"Hey." He reached up and took her hand, pried it away from the locket, and squeezed her hand with his own to gain eye contact with her. It worked. He smiled reassuringly. "Your life is not a mistake. I mean... you're trying to make your marriage work -- you're putting tons of effort into it. Anyone can see that."

Kirsten chuckled mirthlessly and glanced down at their hands, lacing her fingers through his. "Yeah, and all the effort isn't working."

"But that's not your fault. And what happened with your dad? You had no control over that."

"I had control over the drinking."

"Not really," Ryan shook his head, having seen the first-hand effects of alcohol abuse one too many times in his life. "I mean to an extent, sure. But there's a point where the alcohol kinda takes over. So that's not even your fault."

After a moment, Kirsten looked over at him and smiled warmly. "Thank you."

"Sure." He smiled, and jerked his head toward the side of the house. "Wanna go watch the countdown? If we watch in the poolhouse we don't have to watch the lame Carson Daly one."

Kirsten laughed. "Okay."

Ryan led her around back by the hand. When they passed the back patio doors, Kirsten peeked in and saw Seth and Summer passed out in the den. "I shouldn't have let them drink," she murmured to herself.

Ryan couldn't help but chuckle. "Hate to burst your bubble, but they've both been drunk before."

"I know. Did everyone else leave?"

"Yeah." He opened the door to the poolhouse and gestured for her to enter first. "Julie was the last to leave, 'bout a half hour ago."

"Okay." She smiled her gratitude for his chivalry and dropped his hand as she stepped up into the poolhouse, turning around once she was inside to face him.

Ryan smiled and pulled the door shut behind him, leaning back against it for a moment as he took in what she was wearing. Inadvertently, their clothing coordinated, much like the failed dinner they tried to have with Kirsten's father and Lindsay before he had his first heart attack. Just like that dinner, Ryan was wearing his deep plum-colored button-down shirt and black slacks, and Kirsten wore a deep plum dress under a black bolero sweater.

Her voice drew him from his thoughts again. "So."

He raised his eyebrows and pushed himself off from the door. "So." The air crackled with possibility now that they were alone, so near to a bed, and as Ryan brushed past Kirsten and her body twisted to follow him, he could've sworn he felt actual electrical shocks. He grabbed the remote control off his nightstand and pointed it toward the television, turning it to the New Year's countdown, which was at two minutes.

When he sat down at the foot of his bed, Kirsten mirrored him, demurely tucking her legs up beside her and spreading her dress out over them. They watched the countdown in silence for a minute before she turned to look at him. "Did you make a New Year's resolution?" she asked.

"Yeah," he chuckled. "It's kinda dumb, but... I want to start expressing my feelings a little more."

Kirsten frowned thoughtfully. "Hmm. That's actually a good one."

"Yeah?" He twitched a half-smirk and gave her a sideways glance. "Maybe I should start with you."

She giggled. "Okay. You don't really need to tell me because I already know, but go ahead." She was positively beaming at him.

"Well... you know that I love you."

"Of course," she nodded, gripping his hand. "And you know that I love you too."

"Yep. But..." He ducked his gaze away from hers. "You might think I love you one way, when in all honesty... it might be something completely different than what you're thinking."

He looked up to see Kirsten furrowing her brows. "What?"

"Look, Kirsten. I..." He searched her eyes, back and forth, half of him knowing that she wouldn't be appalled nor would she reject him. The other half seemed to think she'd not only be appalled and reject him, but that she may never be able to look at him again.

In the time it took him to worry about that, Kirsten was busy reading his eyes -- finishing his sentence inwardly. And she nodded. "I know."

Ryan looked almost alarmed. "You do?"

Kirsten chuckled. "Yes. Of course I do." As if to prove her point, she grasped the locket between her thumb and forefinger and tilted her head, letting her eyes say the rest.

Ryan held gaze with her, searched her eyes back and forth while his forehead creased in thought. "And... you're okay with it?"

She blinked slowly. "Would I have kissed you under the mistletoe... twice... if I wasn't?"

Ryan tilted his head and pursed his lips. "I suppose not."

Kirsten giggled and let her eyes drift to the television screen, where the ball-drop had dipped to less than thirty seconds. Her smile grew soft, as did her voice, as she kept her eyes on the screen and mentioned casually, "It's almost time."

Ryan followed her gaze and smiled. "Yeah."

They sat together in silence, shoulder-to-shoulder, watching the ball complete its drop. When it did, and it lit up 2006, Kirsten curled her hand around his arm and gained his attention. Her eyes searched his briefly before drifting to his lips as she whispered, "Happy New Year."

Ryan smiled at her affectionately and let his hand caress the fine line of her jaw. "Happy New Year."

Their lips melded together in one smooth motion, no hesitation or tension present. Just as smoothly, Kirsten touched his face and they leaned back on the bed together. Ryan propped himself up on one elbow and slipped his other hand around her waist as his tongue glided across her lips, questing for entry. With a sigh, Kirsten parted her lips and let him in, the kiss intensifying as their legs tangled together.

"So..." Ryan murmured against her lips with a smile. "Then I don't have to tell you--"

"That you're in love with me?" Kirsten finished, kissing him soundly, smiling broadly. "I already know."

And for the time-being, that was all Ryan needed to hear. So they continued kissing, continued ringing in the New Year together.

TBC IN PART 4/5: Valentine's Day

{x-posted to rystenlove}
thekiller00thekiller00 on September 7th, 2007 03:41 am (UTC)
Thats a great way to ring in the new year !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I am glad that they had the talk and each had their first kiss of the new year together !!!!!!!!!!! I can't wait to see what happens on valentines day !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
a.: K; there's beauty in the breakdown;regalish on September 10th, 2007 05:24 pm (UTC)
Re: Thats a great way to ring in the new year !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thanks so much, I'm glad you liked that New Year's bit :D

The Valentine's Day chapter is up & posted!
login_failedlogin_failed on September 7th, 2007 12:48 pm (UTC)
Very fluffy! I liked Ryan's resolution, attempting to be more open. And Kirsten is not a failure, she just has very little to work with because of Sanford. The typical kiss in the new year was well written.
Your Valentines chapter should be excellent, because the show established Sandy's opinion about that particular day(Hersheys and Hallmark day).
a.: K; slow me down;regalish on September 10th, 2007 05:25 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much! I seriously can't quit writing the Rysten fluff, LOL. I DO have an angst-fic in mind that I may be writing soon, though, to balance myself out, hehehe ;)

The Valentine's Day chapter is up as of a few minutes ago! Hope you like it :)
(Anonymous) on September 21st, 2007 07:09 pm (UTC)
very awesome chap!
im about to read the next one...wooo!!!
a.: M; it's time to trust my instincts;regalish on September 22nd, 2007 04:34 am (UTC)
Re: WOW!
Thanks so much! :D