Starco vs Parenthood Introduction - These chapters can be read separately but they are all connected. It's always the same Star & Marco, same kids, same world.

This story takes place during the first Christmas after the Cleave. Marco is 16 while Star is 15. Marco and Adam McArthur share 11/28 as a birthday so this story assumes Star and Eden Sher share 12/26 as a birthday. Bonus, that lines up perfectly with Stump Day being around the same time as Christmas. Note that any text in italics belongs to Star.

Favs, reviews, and constructive feedback are all really helpful. Thanks!


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Chapter 31 - Star's First Christmas

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It started with Marco, his parents, and an extremely cute Mariposa. They and Star spent the whole morning having brunch, sharing stories, and opening presents. The afternoon required an hour-long drive to see Marco's extended family. That event involved Star meeting twenty more Diazs, another gift exchange, and then a truly massive dinner. To end the holiday, the teens traveled to Monster Temple for a family and friends party highlighted by a Secret Santa exchange. This of course was mixed in with wave upon wave of homemade desserts.

In her new holiday dress Star leans against one of the main hall's heavily decorated columns while watching her friends show off their newly opened gifts. The shadowy spot by the pillar was a special place so she decided to wait for her boyfriend to find her. This also gave the young woman some time to collect herself and think. It had been a wonderful day but what was the real meaning behind Christmas? How did it fit in with everything else that had happened over the last crazy year? Unexpectedly a feeling began to grow inside the mewman that she just couldn't shake. As she considered the best way to bring it up with it with her bestie, Star's eyes fell on StarFan who was in the process of opening a refrigerator sized gift. They had drawn names weeks before and the fanfiction writer's Secret Santa was Star's ex Tom.

While everyone else watched the unwrapping, Marco wandered the hall until finally he and his girlfriend spotted each other. Star liked that he was wearing her favorite suit even though the young man was starting to get a little too tall for the pants. What drew most of her attention however was his face. The two had been friends long enough for Star to know that look. It was the expression her bestie got when he thought he had an absolutely brilliant idea.

"Star-Star! I did it!"

"Did you find a new cake recipe you want to try? Oh, I bet you figured out another gift idea for your sister."

"Nope. I figured out who Tom should date!"

The former princess stared at him in disbelief. "Oh corn, my Marco is shipping! Are you feeling okay? Did Janna spike your eggnog? Let me check you for a fever."

Pushing her hand away as she reached for his forehead, he did a quick look to make sure no one was watching before giving his favorite fifteen-year-old a quick peck on the cheek. "I'm feeling fine, I just had a great idea. Ready for this? Tom should date...StarFan."

"Wait-what?"

"Think about it, Tom liked you...StarFan likes you. They would have a ton to talk about!"

Star shook her head, unable to hide her disappointment. "No Marco, there is no way that would work. TomFan might be the worst ship ever."

"Worst? But you don't think..."

"No hun. Look at the Secret Santa gift StarFan just opened."

"Ooooh...is that a coffin?"

"Tom gave her a coffin. Do you really think a half-demon should date the Earth girl who passed out when I told her about our rooftop make-out sessions? Just imagine StarFan going to the Underworld to meet Tom's parents. She'd probably have a heart attack just from the elevator ride."

"But I overheard him saying that he likes braces, they remind him of Underworld torture devices."

"No."

Marco lowered his head in shame. "Ahh...fine."

"Good try hun, good try. Hey, did you see what I got from my Secret SantaFan?" As she speaks she holds up a gallon sized pink water bottle that's as big as her head.

"Yeeeah, how much water does StarFan think you need to drink?"

"During my conversation with her about our making out she asked how I stay hydrated. I think she ran with that as a gift idea. Bonus, when it's completely filled I'm pretty sure I can use it as a weapon."

"She thinks you get dehydrated from kissing?"

"She showed me some internet sites about it. I know you said not to believe everything you read online but this one Reddit post was totally convincing."

"Well if you ever get OVER-hydrated, maybe some kissing would help?"

Reaching over she took his hand and pulled him in. "I think this might be a good night to see if the theory's true."

Before Marco could lean in any closer, an overly excited Tom jumped in front of his two friends completely oblivious to what was about to happen. "Star-Star, check out this Do-It-Yourself Shrunken Head Kit Janna got me! I thought they stopped making these back when Questbuy closed!"

"Niiiiice! It's like Janna knew exactly what you wanted." Looking around, Star spotted her beanie wearing friend across the room. Janna nodded at Star before pointing to her new Secret Santa fanny pack. The whole time she gave the former princess a complete 'WTF am I supposed to do with this' look. Star just smirked and shook her hips while pointing to the gold fanny pack she'd been gifted that morning.

Still oblivious, Tom gave his favorite Earthborn friend an elbow to the ribs while holding up his partial unwrapped box. "Hey Marco, you want to hang out next week and build one of these with me?"

"So we'd be shrinking someone's head?"

"Once you're done you can hang it in your bedroom window. Or maybe we can use them to make tree ornaments?"

"Well..." Marco nervously tried to think up a reason why he needed to skip out of an afternoon of building tiny noggins but was coming up blank. Seeing what was about to happen, his bestie had his back.

"Hey Tom, I bet Janna would totally be into that. I heard she did a whole set with Santa hats and gave them to all her teachers."

"Oh really. You think she'd want to build these with...me?"

"Pfft, totally! She's really into hands on demonic arts and crafts. Plus building little heads is wayyy better when you're teamed up with an experienced shrinker like Janna. Hey, if you promise her a tour of Lucitor Castle you guys could make a whole day of it. I bet she'd like to see where you keep the strategic blood reserve. Go on and ask her, while she's still annoyed at Marco's gift."

"Annoyed at my gift? What's wrong with a fanny pack? It's the same kind I got you." Before Marco could say anything else Tom was halfway across the hall so he could thank his Secret Santa. The two teens stood and watched as an animated Tom began to have conversation about the fine art of miniature cranium crafting with an almost smiling Janna.

"See Marco, that's how you ship. Just stick with me and you'll be a pro in no time."

"Are you sure Janna's not too creepy for Tom?"

"Those two demons are going to be just fine."

"I don't know. Tom seems like a commitment kind of guy while Janna...I'm not sure if she wants world domination or just to be left alone."

"You're thinking about it too much, let them have some fun. Just to educate you a little, part of the excitement of shipping is sitting back and watching the two boats float on by."

"Hopefully they don't end up in a ship-sinking-storm along the way. There are a lot of weather patterns swirling around those two."

Star poked his chest just hard enough to emphasize her words. "Don't you dare ruin their fun. Think about it, they would be perfect for each other. They even gift the same."

"A coffin and shrunken heads, can't argue with that. I guess it's all good as long as they're happy. Hey, speaking of gifts and being happy, did you get everything you wanted for Christmas?"

"Mmmmm." As she replied, Star's shoulders gave a shrug.

"Oh-no, did you not like my gifts? Did I get you the wrong color!?" His expression immediately changed from smiling to near panic.

"Reeeelaaax. Nothing is wrong-wrong but I kinda want to talk to you about something that's bothering me."

"Was it the rainbow cake? Did I overwhip the yellow again?"

"No Marco, your cake was awesome. I want you to close your eyes and think, what were you doing exactly one year ago today?"

As instructed his eyes were shut while his thoughts wandered back in time. "Ah, I don't know. It was just before Stump Day so maybe I was clearing the sewers under the castle with you and your dad. Or I might have been at squire training. I remember waiting until Stump Day afternoon before preparing for your surprise party so I know I wasn't doing that. I probably have it written down in my calendar if you want me to check."

"No-no. I just want to confirm that other than maybe a little Stump Day prep, you were with me doing boring old stuff on Mewni."

"I'm not sure about it being boring but we were doing the stuff we normally did at the time."

"Meanwhile all your family and Earth friends were having parties, eating special dinners, and exchanging presents just like we're doing today, right?"

"Well yeah. I skipped Christmas last year because I was with you."

"Marco, why would you have decided to miss out on all this!? Today was like this awesome celebration of family & friends and I can't for the life of me figure out why you never even mentioned it!"

"Star, it wasn't that big of a deal since we did a bunch of Stump Day stuff with your family. That was kind of like Christmas. Remember when the Great Stump showed up and Tom admitted he was a bad boyfriend? At the time that was the best present ever."

"That's not the point. Stump Day is all about coming together under fear of death. This might be our first Earthni winter but after watching twenty Hallmark Christmas specials and spending all day with your family I know what this holiday is about! Last year you should have brought me to Earth so we could have had a wonderful time rediscovering all the things we did when we first met. After we would have seen all of your aunts and uncles and felt all the love they have for eachother. Then it would have ended with a huge Christmas snowstorm where we get stuck inside causing us both to finally admit that we loved each other!"

"Ah, seriously? That's like the plot of every Hallmark movie ever made. I admit, last Christmas I was crushing hard on a certain princess you might know but even if I had brought you to Earth you weren't in a place yet where any amount of Christmas magic was going to make us a couple. Plus if we were in Echo Creek during a snowstorm I would have just portaled us out with my scissors."

"Well, forget my made-for-TV daydream...I still don't think it's right that you didn't go see your family. They love you and probably missed you a whole corn-ton. Maybe that's why your parents decided to have Mariposa, they wanted to have a kid around who would ACTUALLY visit them during the holidays?"

The young man lowered his head showing that he understood what his girlfriend was saying. "Well...I did go home so I could help with Mari but yeah, you're right. I guess even though we weren't together-together, last Christmas I just wanted to be around you in case you needed me."

"Listen, my point to all this is that even before we started dating you sacrificed a lot for me. I really appreciate everything you did a year ago and everything you do now but you have to take care of yourself AND your family. Maybe as an extra gift...can you promise me that you'll never skip out on spending the holidays with your family again. Please?"

"I-I can do that."

"Thank you."

"Sorry a promise isn't a gift I can wrap up for you."

"No wrapping needed. Plus after opening up all these presents today I'm totally done with tearing open gifts for awhile." As they spoke Star held the water bottle up and looked inside. While thinking about how big the container was she started having an idea. "Hey, you think I could put a three mast ship inside this thing?"

He smiled feeling happy inside that, like always, she was looking out for him. As he stared at his girlfriend he began to notice the reflection of the rooms decorations on the bottle's surface. It was then that something above them caught his eye. "On the topic of shipping, did you realize that you're under the mistletoe right now?"

In a teasing way Star pulled him by his tie so he was just an inch from her face. Finally he was exactly where she wanted him. "Marco, I've been standing under this weird Earth plant for twenty minutes waiting for you to notice. My sweet handsome bestie, you still have so much to learn. Now get with the festivities and kiss me already."

With nervous smirks they leaned in. It started with lips lightly touching but soon their arms snaked around each other in a tight embrace. The mess-up twins normally shied away from too many public displays of affection but Star figured with it being the holidays she would pull out some of the moves she normally reserves for their Diaz roof make-outs. After over a minute the two pulled away slightly to breathe. Their cheeks turned pink, not just from the lack of oxygen but also from the knowledge that the room was eerily silent.

"Tha-that was pretty good. I might need something to drink now."

"C-can we do more of that but later and not here...I-I think everyone is watching, including your dad."

"Yeah-yeah. Come on, let's go before he..."

The crowd parts as a fuming River leaps into the center of the hall. "YOU FOUL WRETCHED SPRIG! HOW DARE YOU POISON THE MIND OF MY INNOCENT YOUNG DAUGHTER! I'LL SHOW YOU! YOU'LL WISH YOU'D NEVER BEEN GROWN!"

As Star and Marco slipped away the former king channeled every ounce of his Johanson aggression into the single branch of mistletoe that hung halfway down the column. Once it was thoroughly decimated the overprotective father turned his rage to every decoration in the room thinking they should all go 'just to be safe'. With Christmas garlands hitting the floor and panicked guests scattering, StarFan was thankful. Not only was she happy that Star would use her gift, as everything in the hall fell she had her own sturdy coffin to hide in.

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This was my entry for the r/StarVStheForcesofEvil, December 2021 Writing Contest. The subject for this contest was 'Gifts' and it ended up tying for the win. I know the story is called 'Starco vs Parenthood' but thanks to prompts like this I keep tossing in more pre-kid Starco then I originally planned. Sorry, not sorry!

If you're keeping track of timelines, this is the night before the Volcano section of 'Chapter 19 - Consent'.

One last item, I wanted to toss a thankyou out to Wraithdagger and others who hang out on the 'When Two Worlds Collide' Discord server. This past year I've bounced a number of ideas in the chat rooms and I've found everyone there to be extremely helpful. - Olin