Notes: For Echoskeleton. Hope you enjoy. Warning: Extreme schmoop ahead.

Hope you enjoy. And thank you to Kel and both Amys for the audience. *cuddle*


Shining Paper and Twinkling Lights


ď...Clark? Clark, wake up."

There was a hand on his chest and his face was being kissed lightly: his forehead, his cheeks, the tip of his nose, his eyelids, and finally his lips.

He smiled and sighed softly, reaching up to pull Lex down on top of him. "What are you doing home? You were supposed to be in Japan until tomorrow."

"I couldn't be away from you. I didn't know if I'd make it, so I didn't want to say anything." Lex curled into him, ran his fingers through his hair. "I wanted to be with you Christmas Eve. I always want to be with you, but especially tonight."

"Me, too. Our first Christmas." He kissed the top of Lex's head softly. "I'm glad you came home."

"Well. It wouldn't be Christmas without your mother's pie." Clark pinched him. "Ow! Or without you." He smiled and pulled Lex closer. "Why aren't you in bed?"

"Couldn't sleep. Missed you." He held Lex tightly and nuzzled his neck.

Lex looked pointedly up to the TV where old Christmas Specials were playing quietly. "Don't tell me you were watching The Grinch again?" He smiled when Clark snorted gently.

"That cartoon's a classic, Lex. You have to watch it at Christmas."

"Most people don't have to watch it 10 times."

"Hmph." Clark licked his way up to Lex's ear and bit softly. "I'm glad you're home, even though you're so mean."

Lex laughed. "Just don't start singing about not touching me with a 39 Ĺ foot pole. Come on. Let's move this to the bedroom. I haven't slept since 4 o'clock yesterday afternoon."

He took the hand Lex offered and they walked into the bedroom in silence. He took off his pajama pants and crawled into bed, waiting for Lex to strip off his boxers and join him. As soon as Lex climbed into the bed, Clark draped himself across his chest and settled his head in the crook of Lex's neck. "I was dreaming about you." He knew Lex was smiling without looking up.

"Oh? Good dreams?" His voice was sensual and his hands found their way down to Clark's ass and squeezed gently.

Clark shivered and brushed Lex's nipple softly. "Weird. Very weird. Remind me not to fall asleep watching Christmas shows again, k?"

Lex ran a hand through his hair, petting him. "Weird?"

"Let's just say that red's not your color."

Lex pulled on his hair, urging his head up so he could look into his eyes. When Clark just smiled, he shrugged and answered "Ok," while yawning, and returned to his soft petting.

Clark nestled in closer and listened to Lex's breathing even into the slow rhythm of sleep, cherishing the rise and fall of his chest. Eventually he, too, slipped into unconsciousness, and they stayed in each other's arms until morning.

* * * * *

Clark woke to find Lex staring at him, wide awake, running a hand up and down his back. He smiled into Lex's chest, listening to his heart and basking in the attention.

"Merry Christmas, Clark." Clark smiled and kissed the skin in front of him, then bit down softly.

"Merry Christmas, Lex. Welcome home." He kissed and licked his way up Lex's neck, across his jaw, to his mouth, and kissed him deeply. He was moving back across Lex's jaw when he was interrupted.

"'s Christmas."

"I know. And you're home." He kissed his way up Lex's jaw to his ear and sucked his earlobe into his mouth.

"Clark. It's Christmas morning." Lex moved his head away and then looked down at Clark.

"Do you have some sort of prohibition against sex on Christmas morning?" Clark smiled down at Lex, his face a mixture of amusement and confusion.

Lex grinned and ran a hand through Clark's hair. "I don't have anything against sex with you ever, but it's Christmas morning, Clark. Don't you want to see what Santa left you?"

Clark could feel that Lex was practically vibrating in his excitement, and his eyes were shining. "I haven't seen you in a week, Lex. The presents will still be there after I ravish you." He smiled at

Lex playfully and bent down to take a nipple into his mouth.

Lex gasped and then pushed him away. "Clark. I love you, you know that. But there are presents sitting in the den under a big tree, and some of them have my name on them, and I want to open them *right now*. We'll have sex later. Lots of sex. Lots of very enjoyable sex." He pushed Clark off of him and stood up, grabbing his pajama pants and pulling them on quickly, before offering his hand to Clark. "Come on. You have presents out there, too, you know. Lots of them. Good ones." He grinned again happily, and Clark had to laugh.

"I can't believe you're picking presents over sex. You've been gone a week, Lex!" he argued, but got up and put on his own pajama pants. Lex acting like a 5 year old was too adorable to really argue with.

Lex took his hand and pulled him out to the den and their Christmas tree, and then stood there looking at it and smiling. Clark laughed softly and pulled Lex back into his chest, wrapping his arms around his waist and kissing his cheek. "Are you always this hyper Christmas morning, Lex?"

Lex smiled sadly. "I haven't really had a Christmas morning in a while."

 Clark tightened his arms around Lex and nuzzled his face softly. "What do you mean?"

 Lex leaned his head back against Clark's shoulder and closed his eyes. He shrugged. "After my mother died, I stayed at Boarding school for Christmas break. And it doesnít feel like Christmas morning when Iím by myself. In Smallville I tended to spend Christmas morning in bed sleeping off my hangover." He smiled self-deprecatingly and started to stroke Clark's arms.

 "I'm sorry. I should've known that. I should've invited you to the farm for Christmas." He continued
 to nuzzle Lex's neck and pet his stomach lightly.

"No. I didn't want you to know. You were happy with your family." He spoke softly, but his hands tightened tellingly on Clark's arms.

 Clark kissed Lex's cheek and unwrapped his arms from around him. "Let's open presents, Lex." He took his hand and pulled him down to the floor.

 Lex smiled softly and sat down against Clark, leaning over to kiss him. Then he turned back to the tree and looked at the presents piled underneath. "Your parents went overboard. It looks like they sent half the farm." He looked up at Clark and his smile widened. "You go first. Open this one." Lex reached under the tree and pulled out a small, red and gold wrapped box. "And don't even try the X-Ray vision."

Clark leaned over and kissed him, grabbing the box, then leaned back, grinning and making his nose crinkle. "Would I do that?"

Lex smirked. "You're a holy terror. I bet you checked out what you were getting every year at home."

Clark laughed. "I may have. But I didn't this year; I wanted to be surprised."

"I know you didn't. I wasn't taking any chances." At Clark's confused look, Lex gestured to the box he was holding.

"You wrapped the presents in lead?" Clark's incredulous stare was met with Lex's poker face. "How do you even do that? Where do you get lead-lined wrapping paper?"

Lex sat back, his poker face slipping into a grin. "Owning your own company has many useful benefits. Open your present." He leaned forward and wrapped his arms around his legs, resting his chin on his knees, still grinning.

Clark lifted the box up to his ear and shook it lightly, and then more enthusiastically. Lex's expression became impatient, and he started rocking back and forth, biting his lip. Clark broke into a soft smile and he unwrapped his present, watching as Lex became more and more excited as the gift was revealed. "Do you think you could do that any slower, Clark?"

"I could try." He started to pull the tape off of the paper in slow motion, being careful not to rip it, and raised his eyebrows in a challenge to Lex.

"You're secretly four. Open your present."

"A four year old would just tear it open. I'm savoring. This is a very important moment in our lives, Lex. The first present of our first Christmas morning together. And I'm not the one who's so excited he canít sit still."

Lex tried to glare past a smile. "Less mocking, more ripping."

Clark grinned and ripped off the rest of the wrapping paper.  He pulled the lid from the small cardboard box. Inside, on top of a soft layer of white cotton, was a small red truck. Clark stared down at the box, his eyes fixed on the bed of the tiny truck, and on the shiny silver set of keys that sat in it. "Oh my god, Lex. You gave me the truck?!" He laughed and lunged at Lex, pushing him to the floor and landing over him, hands on either side of his head.

"I'm going to assume that you like it." Lex smiled up at Clark, his eyes alight with pleasure at seeing Clark's reaction to his gift. Clark leaned down and kissed him, nipping his bottom lip playfully before retreating just enough to respond.

"Of course I like it. Not that I wouldn't have liked anything, but...I really like this. Thank you." He kissed Lex again before sitting back and pulling Lex up, wrapping his arms around him and smiling. "Your turn, now."

Lex grinned and looked excitedly at the presents under the tree. "Which one?"

Clark leaned over and picked up a large square box wrapped in blue paper covered in snowmen. "This is the one." He handed the box to Lex, who took it and turned a confused expression on Clark.

"It isn't empty, is it?" He shook it softly and then set it on the ground, immediately ripping the paper from the box. Clark laughed as Lex picked at the tape holding the box closed, an _expression of intense concentration on his face, and gave a satisfied sigh as he got it open.

He looked up at Clark and brought a hand to his chest dramatically. "Packing peanuts! How did you know?" He attempted to look sarcastic, but gave up after a few seconds and began rifling through the box. "Clark, it's not actually empty, right? Because as much as I love little pieces of Styrofoam, I want a real present."

He looked so serious that Clark had a hard time not laughing, so he gave up and chuckled softly to himself, which only made Lex start to look annoyed. "It's on the bottom, Lex."

He reached down to the bottom of the box and smiled before he'd even lifted the gift from the box. "It's a comic!" As he pulled it out and looked at it, his jaw dropped and he looked up at Clark in shock.

"How did you do this?" He looked back down at the cover of the comic, which had a picture of Warrior Angel on the top of what looked remarkably like the LexCorp building but which was, apparently, the headquarters for AngelCorp. Lex continued to stare at the cover as Clark spoke.

"You're not the only one who can be mysterious, you know." When Lex looked up at him eagerly, an amazed look still on his face, Clark smiled and admitted, embarrassed, "The author may have a thing for Superman."

 Lex laughed and looked back down at the comic. "You used your influence to get me this? You hate that."

"Yeah, well. Clark Kent couldn't even get a meeting with him, so I figured I didn't have a chance of getting any sort of favors. I wanted to do this for you. I wanted to give you something special."

Lex smiled softly. "Any response I make to that right now will embarrass me horribly later, so I'm just going to kiss you and say thank you, and read my new comic." He moved over beside Clark and kissed him softly, leaning into him, and began to read.

Clark wrapped an arm around his shoulder. "You don't want to open the rest of your presents?"

"Later." Lex didn't even look up, his attention completely on the book in his hands. Clark smiled and kissed his temple, and stroked the back of Lex's neck as he watched him read.

* * * * *

After they finished opening presents, Clark went into the kitchen and poured two cups of coffee and one big bowl of sugary cereal with two spoons and brought them out to the den.  Lex was sitting on the comfortable couch in front of the television. Clark set the mugs down on the coffee table and slipped in behind Lex, sitting back against the arm of the couch and pulling Lex back to lean against his chest. Lex took the bowl of cereal and set it on Clark's arms when they wrapped around his chest, and lifted the spoon to his mouth. "Let's watch The Grinch."

"Wait, you're actually suggesting that I watch it, now? I thought you scoffed at Christmas Specials?" Lex turned around and smirked at him as Clark ate a spoonful of cereal.

"I'm suggesting we watch The Grinch. Do you have a problem with that? I could always watch CNN instead." Clark didn't respond, just picked up the remote and changed the channel to The Grinch and settled back in, petting Lex's stomach softly and singing along with the Whos while they ate breakfast.

When a commercial came on, Lex rolled over so he was lying on top of Clark. "What time are we leaving for Smallville?"

"My mom said we should be there around two, so we have a few hours." He stroked his hands across Lex's back, neck to tailbone, and Lex rested his head on Clark's shoulder, nuzzling his neck.

"I don't know if I can wait that long for her pie."

Clark snickered and licked Lex's ear. "I think I could distract you for a few hours."

He could feel Lex smile against his neck. "What's next, Frosty the Snowman? Rudolph?"

He pinched Lex on the hip and held him against his chest while he tried to squirm away. "I can think of a better way than that."

"Oh could you? Do tell." Lex purred, as he pushed up from Clark and the couch and held his hand out to help Clark up.

"I think it might be easier to show." Lex laughed as Clark sped him into the bedroom, and the den was left empty save for the lights twinkling on the tree and the Whos singing to the empty couch.

The End.