MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY HOLIDAYS!
I did this as a special gift to some friends of mine. I hope all of you enjoy!
Falling asleep on the couch was nothing new for them. The television could be on, the volume at full blast, and Abbie and Ichabod could both be fast asleep. Her, curled up on the couch; him, in the easy chair with his feet propped up.
Tonight was different.
It was the middle of December and the heater picked, now, to stop working. The repairman wouldn't be out until tomorrow and that left the Witnesses with dilemmas of what to do until then. They determined they had enough blankets to stay warm and decided to watch some movies until they grew tired. To keep warm, they piled on three blankets and sat next to each other on the couch.
What happened next, neither of them could have predicted.
After a while, they drifted off asleep. With their arms around each other.
A couple of hours later, Abbie's arm slipped, causing them both to stir. They woke up fully when they realized the position they were in. They slowly moved away from each other, wide-eyed and breathless.
Ichabod started to stutter, "L-L-Leftenant, I…"
"Crane…" Abbie whispered.
Ichabod attempted to gather his wits and failed, miserably. He stood up, quickly, "I shall… retire for the evening. Good night." He left the room without waiting for a response.
Abbie threw her back against the couch, completely dumbfounded. She couldn't deny one thing: it felt amazing comfortably being in Crane's arms.
The following morning,
Ichabod was standing outside on the porch, wearing a heavy coat with a cup of hot tea set on porch railing.
Abbie walked around the house, looking for Ichabod, and found him standing on the porch. She grabbed a coat and walked outside. "Hey, Crane," she greeted.
He turned to face her, briefly, then looked back at the snowy street. "Good morning, Leftenant."
"Morning. What are you doing out here?"
"Just enjoying the snow," he replied.
"Never seen you do that before," she said.
"Snow is peaceful. Calming. Allows to… gather their thoughts."
"Yes." Ichabod looked up, "As a child, I rather enjoyed the first snow falls of the season. Though, it would quickly turn unenjoyable on the years the snow would become unmanageable."
"I can imagine." Abbie looked around, taking in the serene scene.
"Forgive me," he said. "Would you like some tea?"
"Not right now." She looked at him, "So, what's bothering you so much that you need to gather your thoughts?"
Ichabod could almost feel that question coming. But he decided to stall or divert. "Why must there be something bothering me?"
But Abbie wasn't about to let him get away with that. "Because something is."
He wouldn't look at her. Of course, she was right but he didn't know how to talk about this.
Abbie looked Ichabod over and made a decision. She took the cup he had and placed it on the swing. She took him by the arm, drawing a blush to his cheeks.
"Let's go for a walk," Abbie suggested.
Ichabod was powerless to resist such an offer. He simply nodded.
They made sure the house was locked up and went for a quiet stroll down the street. All of Sleepy Hollow seemed to be at peace at the moment. They soft snow fall combined with the Christmas decorations all over the neighborhood made their beloved town look like a picture-perfect holiday postcard. Given everything the Witnesses had gone through the past year, in particular with the Hidden One and almost losing Joe, any moments of peace were more than welcome.
"It's been a long time since I just went for a walk in the snow," Abbie said.
"For me, as well," Ichabod replied.
She looked around, "Never just stop and take it in anymore, ya know. Always moving as fast as possible, you can miss all the small things."
"Yes. Taking time to stop and… appreciate all the moments you can… it helps one keep their sanity."
They walked a little further but Abbie decided that they had gone far enough without discussing what was really on their minds.
"Crane," Abbie said. "We're avoiding a subject."
Ichabod was silent for a few more moments before he conceded, "Yes. We are."
"So… let's tackle this." She looked at him, "How do you feel about me?"
"You're a remarkable woman," he replied. "One of the strongest people I've ever met in my life."
"Thank you. But how do you feel about me?"
He looked at her, contemplatively. "Are you… certain you wish to hear this?"
"I am," she said, confidently.
"Very well." He took a deep breath. "I've been… feeling… very, very strongly about you in recent weeks, Abbie. It's been very difficult to deny. I did not wish to jeopardize I relationship."
"I get that." Abbie took a breath. "So, what happened last night?"
"Nothing," Ichabod answered.
"Let me rephrase that. What was going to happen?"
He considered his answer and admitted, timidly, "Perhaps… something."
"And there it is," she said. "Something would've happened. It was happening. So. Why hasn't it happened?"
"Because we are so vastly different," he replied. "I am still a stranger in a world like this. You need… you deserve to have someone who is so much… more than me."
"Brave, reliable, caring, and smart?" she asked. "I need more than that?"
"While I appreciate your kind words, yes, you deserve more than that. I'm a… difficult man to care for. I do not wish to put you in such a position as that, as caring for someone like me."
"What if that's what I want?"
Ichabod stopped and stared at her, blankly.
Abbie stopped and shrugged, "What if that position you don't want to put me in is the exactly the position I want to be in?"
"Crane," Abbie said. "I… I don't like things being unclear. And I don't like… having feelings for someone… and not knowing where they stand about me."
"Feelings," Ichabod said. "You… have feelings… for me?"
They were in the deep end now. And Abbie decided to take it further. "Yeah. I do. And, now, I know that you do, too."
Ichabod couldn't think of a response.
Abbie put her hand on his cheek. "Stop fighting this. There's something here. A chance we both want to take. Can we just… take the chance and see where it takes us?"
He did want that. More than anything. "Do you truly want that?"
"Yes," she said, confidently. "Do you?"
Ichabod gazed into her eyes for a long time. He did want to take the chance and hope it paid off. He decided to take that risk, especially because she admitted that she wanted to, as well. He took a step closer to her and, slowly, pressed his lips to hers. The feeling of bliss hit them both, almost, instantly. The kiss lasted for more than a few moments, deepening with every second. After the kiss, they pulled away and smiled at each other.
"Yes," Ichabod said. "I do."
"Well, that took you long enough!" Abbie joked.
"I just wanted to be sure before saying or doing anything."
Abbie scoffed but shrugged. "Yeah. Yeah, I get that. But, you don't have to worry about that anymore."
"What if…" Ichabod said.
"This doesn't work?" Abbie finished. "That's a bridge we'll worry about when we come to it. For now…" She looked up, "…why don't we just enjoy the snow?"
He looked at the sky as well. "I believe that is a fantastic idea."
A/N: Have a great day and holiday, everyone! Take care!