Pairings/Characters: Future!Fic, Finn/Rachel
Word count: 824
Summary: Stella is four and has been begging them to let her have a Christmas tree of her very own in her room since late July. Pure fluff, based on this photoset.
Stella is four and has been begging them to let her have a Christmas tree of her very own in her room since late July. So, one evening in early December, they decide to make a family date of it. They get all dressed up in ‘fancy’ clothes (Rachel even lets Stella wear one of her pearl necklaces), and they take her to see the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. Stella doesn’t stop smiling for the entire show, all wide eyed and full of wonderment, and Finn spends more time watching her than he does the stage. After the show, they pick up hot chocolate and cookies from their favorite little corner bakery before walking to the Christmas tree lot. Stella carefully examines every single tree on the lot (twice), and ends up falling in love with one of the ugliest tree Finn has ever seen. It’s like, two feet tall and half of its needles have dried up and fallen off. It’s basically a glorified stick.
“Stella, baby, are you absolutely positive this is the tree you want?” Rachel asks, tugging Stella’s hat down a little bit further onto her head.
“Yes, mommy, I’m sure.”
“Kiddo,” Finn starts, “don’t you want to pick out one of the bigger trees? You know, one that has branches to hang ornaments on and stuff?”
Stella shakes her head, “I want this one. She isn’t pretty and fancy like the other trees and if we don’t take her home, then probably no one will.”
Rachel opens her mouth to protest, but Finn nudges her in the side to stop her. “Okay, Bell, if you’re sure this is the tree for you, then it’s the one we’ll get.”
Stella’s completely overjoyed, and she wraps her little mitten hand around the top of the tree and starts dragging it to the front to pay.
Rachel shakes her head and gives him a look.
“Nothing,” she says with a laugh. “That tree is horrendous, and they’re charging $30 for it.”
Finn shrugs a little. “I know. But wanting to save an ugly tree from loneliness at Christmas? That’s totally you, Rach, and I never want Stella to lose that part of herself.”
“Me? That doesn’t sound like me at all.”
“No?” Finn wraps his arm around Rachel’s neck and pulls her in close, kissing her on the lips. “We’ve got a three-legged cat at home that suggests otherwise.”
His little Stell Bell? She’s basically a miniature version of Rachel. He knew he was in trouble from the day Stella was born because when the nurse went to give her a bath, the water wasn’t warm enough to suit Stella’s taste and she immediately stuck out her bottom lip and made this pitiful, pouty little face that he’d seen Rachel pull on him thousands of times before. So, yeah, the apple definitely didn’t fall far from the tree. Sometimes Finn jokes around with Rachel, asking if she couldn’t have at least let him throw a little bit of his DNA into the mixture. It isn’t like he minds, Stella is this incredible little person and she has her daddy completely wrapped around her little finger. It’s just that sometimes he’d like to look at his daughter and think ‘oh, yeah, she got that from me’.
Rachel swears that Finn exaggerates the similarities between them and that she sees just as much of Finn in Stella as she sees of herself, but it’s undeniable. When they tuck her in at night, Stella rarely asks for a bedtime story, preferring to have a family sing along instead. He’s lost count of the number of times they’ve walked into Stella’s room to check on her and found her standing on top of her bed, belting out Broadway tunes to a captivated audience of stuffed animals. Just last week he found her singing her own mash-up of Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer and The Dreidel Song. She is her mother’s daughter.
It’s Christmas Eve and Finn is hidden away in the spare bedroom, working on assembling some of Stella’s presents from Santa, when he hears Rachel laughing in the other room.
“FINN, GET IN HERE AND LOOK AT WHAT YOUR DAUGHTER HAS DONE.” She calls, putting a lot of emphasis on the word your.
He puts down the screwdriver, gets up, and walks out into the living room. Rachel is busy snapping pictures and Stella is sitting in the middle of the floor with their dog, Higgins. The dog is totally wearing a Santa suit and looking like he wished he was dead.
“Hi, daddy!” Stella beams.
“Hey, Bell.” Finn laughs, sitting down next to her on the floor. “Higgins sure does look festive this evening.”
“Stella, tell daddy what Higgins’ new name is.” Rachel says, putting down the camera and joining her family on the floor.
“His name is Santa Paws,” Stella exclaims, giggling.
“See, babe,” Rachel whispers to Finn, “and that is totally you.”