December 17th- Just One Wish by m. butterfly

As far as unwritten rules went, this was one Starsky could live with.

That didn’t mean he had to like it, though. Which he didn’t. Because he enjoyed having Christmas off, especially when he could spend it with Hutch.

“Thanks again, you two,” Benedict said to Starsky and Hutch. Again. “I can’t tell you… This is just… I owe you… We owe you…”

“What my silver-tongued partner is trying to say,” interrupted Martin, grinning, “is that you guys are okay. And we’ll find a way to make it up to you.”

“Forget it.” Starsky slapped Martin on the upper arm genially. “You have kids. Young kids. And you’re a newlywed, Benny. Hutch and I don’t mind working Christmas for you. Right, Hutch?”

“Right.” Hutch crumpled the wrapper from his muffin and dropped it into the wastebasket beside his desk. “It’s no big deal. Besides,” he mumbled into his shirt as he brushed away some stray crumbs, “I never get what I want, anyway.”

“What’s that supposed to—?”

Dobey’s door banged open. “Starsky! Hutch! In here. Now!”

It wasn’t until the wee hours of December 26 that Starsky had the chance to finish his question.


While Benedict and Martin were unwrapping presents and putting together toys and slurping eggnog and stuffing themselves with turkey dinners and generally enjoying themselves in the peace and comfort of their cozy little homes, Starsky and Hutch—weren’t.

It wasn’t like they had to bring down a drug lord or investigate a liquor store holdup. No, they’d done that—and more—by Christmas Eve.

Christmas Day was merely a non-stop series of sad, small things. A domestic dispute. A drunk and disorderly. A stolen car. A break-in.

And the piles and piles of paperwork those incidents involved.

By the time they’d rolled up to Starsky’s place, it was well past midnight.

“Want another beer, Hutch?”

“Still working on this one.” Hutch had melted into the armchair, those mile-long legs of his stretched across the coffee table, his feet a hair’s breadth from Starsky’s. “Just warning you, partner. I may be sleeping here.”

“That’s the plan, dummy.”

“No, I mean here. In this chair.” Hutch yawned hugely. “Too tired to move to the couch. Just throw a blanket on me and stick me with a fork. I’m done.”

Starsky, who didn’t look like he would budge from the couch-cum-guest bed anytime soon, nudged a booted foot with the toe of his sneaker. Still, he just had to ask. “Want to open your presents now?”

Hutch opened one eye. “Too tired for that, too.” He took another swig from the brown bottle. “Presents, huh? As in more than one? Don’t know why you bother, Starsk. You know I’m not a fan of Christmas.”

“Yeah. I know. Bad childhood memories. Too commercialized. Blah, blah, blah.” Then the conversation with Benedict and Martin switched from pause to play in his head. “And, like you said, you never get what you want.”

Now both of Hutch’s eyes were open. “Um. When did I say that?”

“Nice try, blondie. A few days ago, and you know it.”

Hutch began picking at the beer bottle’s damp label. “It never ceases to amaze me what stupid things you choose to remember. Or pay attention to in the first place.”

“Wasn’t stupid. You looked kinda—I dunno—sad when you said it. Like it’s something way more important than a new blender to make those disgusting wheat-germ-and-tofu shakes of yours.”

The side of Hutch’s mouth quirked up at that one. Briefly. “It’s nothing.” He slid his feet onto the floor and sat up slowly before putting down his nearly naked bottle. He rubbed his eyes. “Just drop it, okay? I think it’s time to go… to get some sleep. Christmas is over for another year, thank god.”

Starsky got up from the couch and plopped himself down where Hutch’s feet had just been, bumping knees.

“Like the song says, there are 12 days of Christmas. So tomorrow—or today, whatever—has to be one of ’em.”

Hutch inclined his head toward the small but fully trimmed tree that sat opposite a menorah spattered with melted wax. “Remind me again why a nice Jewish boy like you is so fascinated with Jesus? Or is it Santa? I can never keep those two straight.”

“Stop trying to make this about me. I want to know what you really want for Christmas. What makes you hurt because you’ve never gotten it.”

Hutch started to wave his index finger at Starsky but gave up after a couple of shakes and ran his hand through his hair instead. “You don’t want to know.”

“Yes I do. Come on, Hutch. Since when don’t we tell each other stuff?”

Hutch’s silence was deafening.

“You already have your two front teeth, so it can’t be that.”

“Hilarious as usual, Gordo.”

“I can wait all night. You know I can.”

“Fine. Here it goes. I want…” Hutch sighed deeply. “I want to live in a better world.”

“Oh, boy,” Starsky groaned, rolling his eyes. “At least you didn’t say world peace.”

“I wasn’t finished,” Hutch bristled. “But I guess if you don’t want to hear the—”

Starsky grabbed hold of Hutch’s legs above the knees, as though expecting the man’s imminent escape, which was entirely possible. “Okay, okay. So finish, already.”

Another sigh. “I want to live in a world where a man—or a woman—can live openly and honestly and love whomever he—or she—wants without being judged or persecuted. Or worse.”

Starsky gently squeezed the tense flesh beneath his hands. “Hutch…”

“And I want to stop being such a damned coward.”


He looked at Starsky directly for this first time since this clearly unsettling conversation had begun. “And I want… I want you to feel about me the same way I feel about you.”

Starsky barely registered the slight waiver in Hutch’s voice, the suspiciously bright eyes. “You know I love you,” he said some long seconds later. “Right?”

Hutch dropped his gaze. “Yeah, I know. Like a brother.”

“Not just that.”

Hutch was so still that it seemed he’d stop breathing.

“Look at me, Hutch. Look at me,” Starsky coaxed. “Atta boy. Now, what would you say if I told you that I’ve been asking Santa for the same thing as you?”

“I’d say… What the hell did you put in our beer?”

“Oh, very romantic.” Starsky took possession of Hutch’s hands. “Know what I’d say if I was you? I’d say, ‘Got any mistletoe, Starsk?’ And then—” Suddenly bursting with energy, he bolted to his feet, practically transported across the living room, yanked a scraggly piece of plastic mistletoe from the bookshelf, transported back to the chair, and, one handed, hauled Hutch to his feet.

“And then I’d say, ‘I’m in love with you, too, Hutch.'” He raised the mistletoe over his head, firmly planted his free hand around the back of Hutch’s neck, and eliminated the space between them.

And finally gave Hutch the kiss that had been wrapped up and hidden away in the back of Starsky’s closet for too damned long.

“Merry Christmas, babe. Hope you like this present ’cause you’re gonna get more. A lot mmmph….”


The mistletoe turned up the next time Starsky did laundry, clinging to the inside of the turtleneck Hutch had been wearing the night he stopped hating Christmas.



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9 Responses to December 17th- Just One Wish by m. butterfly

  1. barancoire says:


  2. Sammy (Samudee) says:

    That’s so sweet! Awww, Hutch! Waiting to get his present for such a long time!

  3. Duluth says:

    I loved this story. No wonder Hutch hated Christmas! 🙂

  4. Kath Moonshine says:

    Thank you! I’m so glad Hutch finally got what he wanted. :^)

  5. Kerrys2Boys says:

    A perfect little tale. Loved it and beautifully delivered with just the right tempo between the two of them until the magic moment captures them both.

  6. Sagitta says:

    Thanks for this very lovely reading! Starsk is always saving the day when it comes to Hutch’s insecurity, but Hutch is fast with the catching up…

  7. wightfaerie says:

    Aww, sweet. I’d say that’s a pretty good reason for hating Christmas, and a darned good one to stop hating it. Lovely. Thank you.

  8. hardboiledbaby says:

    Aww, I love this lots 🙂 Thanks so much!

  9. MsMoat says:

    As others have said: Aww! I do like a yearning Hutch, and a practical Starsky. *g* The mistletoe is an excellent touch. Thank you! This was lovely.

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