said_scarlett: (kill hitler)
Faye ([personal profile] said_scarlett) wrote2012-12-18 03:37 pm

A Merry Scary Christmas

Title: A Merry Scary Christmas
Fandom: SH4/RP-AU
Rating: PG-13
Summary: Christmas Eve has come to room 304...

Gift fic for the every wonderful and awesome Cath! We have this whole AU premise with Walter haunting Henry only it's like some sort of horror themed sitcom....



The first thing Henry saw upon stumbling, groggily and barefoot into his living room, was Walter.

The second thing he saw was that Walter was wearing a Santa Claus hat.

"…the hell?"

Henry rubbed a hand over his eyes, still sticky from sleep, and decided he was far, far too sober to deal with…whatever was happening in his living room.

"Good morning, Henry." Walter was grinning. "It's Christmas Eve."

"Uh-huh." Ignoring Walter, the still-living resident of the apartment headed to the kitchen area and the fridge. Coffee. He needed coffee. Strong and black. Why was Walter wearing the hat? It didn't look jolly in the least.

"We don't have a tree, Henry."

"Uh…" He bent, searching through the cabinets for a can of coffee and filters.

"Where will Santa leave us our presents, if we don't have a tree?"

Oh good god. Henry stood up, a box of instant potatoes in his hand and a guarded and cautious expression on his face. Walter was still there, standing in the living room and grinning like…well…not like a mad man, actually. Which was both a pleasant change and an unnerving one.

"You know what…it's too early to play 'Guess What My Pet Psychopath Means'. So are you just having one of your weird reversions or am I going to wake up to…I don't know, pulsing prostitute hearts in a sock nailed over my TV tomorrow?"

Walter's face fell. Henry rolled his eyes and went back to preparing himself coffee.

"Look, I'm sorry, but…you're weirder than normal this morning." Why was he apologizing? At what point did apologizing to the spectral remnant of a mad mass murderer become a normal and expected part of his daily routine? Sometimes, Henry really wondered how he'd ended up the way he did. But now it was time to wonder what Walter's seasonal bizarreness was all about.

"It's Christmas Eve," Walter repeated. "We have to have a tree."

Patient. As though he were explaining a simple concept to a child. Henry only stared back, meeting Walter's placid gaze. Dirty blond hair tumbled out from under the red hat, and Henry noticed a cartoonish reindeer pin on the lapel of the man's coat. A tree. He wanted a Christmas tree. Holidays had never held much importance for Henry himself, but he supposed in the interests of keeping his homicidal ghost happy, he may as well go and get a tree.

"Okay," he agreed. "Okay. Lemme…lemme have my coffee and get dressed and…I'll go get a tree."

It wasn't as though he had any other plans for today.

"And candy canes. And a star for the top. Make sure it's a star - I don't want an angel."

"Star, candy canes, got it."

"I mean it, Henry."

Henry waved a hand and got the coffee going, heading back to his bedroom to get dressed. Of course, when he went through the door, Walter was already there and waiting for him.

"You didn't decorate at all." The words were almost accusing. Henry went to his closet and opened it, then pulled his pajama top off over his head. He could feel Walter's eyes boring into his back. Angrily. Because Henry hadn't put out any Christmas decorations.

"Why do I feel like I'm in the world's most deranged holiday special? I don't…I don't really do the…the 'Christmas' thing."

Silence from Walter as Henry continued to get dressed.

"I don't hate it…I just…never bother. But look, I'm getting dressed to go bother. So go…cut out snowflakes in your closet, or something."

Walter only shook his finger in henry's direction, admonishment or warning or reminder, he didn't know. But then the ghost was turning away, fading, and Henry let out a sigh of relief. He knew Walter was always there, in the apartment, but it was easier to ignore him when noncoporeal or in the laundry room where he was bound. After dressing and downing a strong cup of coffee, Henry found himself pretty eager to get out the apartment for a bit. Bundled up against the New England December, he headed out to find a Christmas tree for Walter…

***


It was afternoon by the time Henry returned. Not wanting to take any chances, his apartment looked as though a Walmart seasonal display had exploded. Lights, ornaments, tinsel, jolly santa decor bits…Henry thought it was all a bit glitzy, but Walter was overjoyed. Uncomfortably so. He was smiling, widely, and he kept tugging at Henry's sleeve to point out some other small item that had caught his eye. He looked…well, Henry sheepishly realized, he looked like a little kid on Christmas.

"Can we put up the tree now? I've always wanted to put up a real Christmas tree…."

And that about cinched what Henry realized should have been obvious. When the hell had Walter ever celebrated Christmas? He had probably danced around the smoking corpses of the Order's enemies as a small child, not a merry Yule log. Small stirrings of guilt. It was hard, sometimes, to reconcile the small boy who'd been abused by a twisted cult and the deranged man who had slaughtered without mercy before Henry's very eyes. This was one of those times.

"Yeah." It was all Henry could say. It wasn't a very big tree, and it fit well enough at the end of the couch, once the end table was moved. Once screwed into the cheap plastic stand Henry had bought, Walter sat in front of it with his legs crossed.

"Did you remember the star?"

"I got…a bunch of them. Take your pick." He didn't care. He sat on the couch and smoked while Walter looked through bags of ornaments. The TV turned itself on and flipped to A Christmas Carol. It was one of the stranger scenes that Henry could remember seeing, and he'd seen more than his fair share. Walter, decorating the tree, eager and excited and still wearing that silly Santa hat.

"Oh! I almost forgot!" And Walter was gone. Henry blinked, smoke hanging heavy in front of his eyes, wondering what in the world Walter could have forgotten. He hoped to hell it wouldn't require him to go back out, he was too stoned to do much of anything but sit on the couch and watch holiday specials. He didn't need to wait long. Walter reappeared, his arms full of something white….

"Walter?"

"The snowflakes you wanted." There was an almost smug note in Walter's voice as he opened his arms and let the paper snowflakes tumble down onto the coffee table. Snowflakes…? Oh. Of course. He'd snapped at Walter to go cut snowflakes.

"Oh, hey, look…oh. Um. Look at that." While the shapes were decidedly snowflake shaped, the details were…less so. "That's…a whole lot of naked human bodies contorted in pain."

"I made them special. Just for you."

"Yeah, Walter," Henry said, shaking his head and letting out a soft sound that was almost a chuckle. "Yeah, you sure did."

"Merry Christmas, Henry."

"Merry Christmas, Walter. Let's…let's just put these on the wall-side of the tree, okay…?"

It was going to be one hell of a holiday.