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world's best dad

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When Luke arrives for breakfast at Jocelyn’s that morning, exhausted from the graveyard shift, he slumps at the breakfast table for a whole five minutes before noticing the conspicuously wrapped box resting on it. It’s wrapped in reflective silver paper with a bright pink bow on the top, a tag attached with his name written on it in a child’s most careful hand.

“Don’t touch that!” A piercing shout scares him, despite his enhanced senses. He turns to see Clary standing in the doorway, gap in the front of her teeth from a missing tooth and hair only half fixed.

Jocelyn comes following after her with an exasperated expression, still holding a brush and elastic, clips poking out between her lips. She smiles warmly at Luke all the same, and he basks in it.

“Isn’t it for me?” Luke asks Clary and she clambers into his lap, wrapping her skinny arms around his neck and sighing in irritation at his slowness.

Yes , but you have to wait until after breakfast. Mom says,” she tells him pointedly, letting Jocelyn put her hair into a second braid before scrambling off of Luke to get her special cereal bowl off of the counter.

Luke huffs out a laugh at her, and Jocelyn places a hand on his shoulder. “Thanks for making it,” she says.

“Always,” he tells her, putting his hand on top of hers. She lets him for a moment, before pulling it away to help Clary with the cereal and orange juice.

Clary eats quickly, as if it will hasten Jocelyn and Luke to do the same, and then stares at them anxiously as they finish. Luke takes a long time on purpose, and she gripes at him loudly. Finally, Luke tugs the gift toward himself and makes a show of ripping the wrapping to shreds. He sticks the bow to Clary’s forehead and she giggles, brushing it off.

Inside the box is a white coffee mug, hand painted. There’s a shaky image of the earth below the words “World’s Best Dad” painted in gold. On the bottom, Clary signed a sloppy signature in black with a heart over the “i” in Clarissa.

It strikes Luke, then, what day it is. The card sales at the corner store, the balloons on mailboxes that he spotted as he drove over. It’s Father’s Day.

“Do you like it?” Clary has her lower lip trapped between her teeth, the full force of her green eyes pinned on him.

Luke grins, pulling her chair close to him so he can hug her. “I love it. Thank you, kiddo.” He blinks determinedly against his stinging eyes, beaming at Jocelyn over the top of Clary’s head.

 

Simon slides into the booth across from Luke at the Jade Wolf, clutching a parcel in his hands. It’s just after ten, and the pack has grown used to Simon’s presence, even if it displeases them. They barely spare Simon a glance. Luke looks him over, his pink cheeks and slightly stained mouth show that he’s fed recently. The redness at the tips of his ears give away Simon’s nervousness. Luke doesn’t think he’s ever met a vampire who could blush before.

“Hey, Luke,” he says, and Luke waves his chopsticks in greeting.

“What’s up, Simon?” Luke asks after swallowing, crossing his arms.

Simon turns pinker at that, but places the parcel on the table between them firmly. “I wanted to say thank you, you know? For all you’ve done for me, since it happened. I’d be dead ten times over if it weren’t for you. Like, really dead. Not undead. I’m already undead-” Luke gives him a quelling look, and Simon snaps his mouth closed sheepishly. Then, he shoves the package across the table. “This is for you.”

Luke opens it bemusedly, and sets the black ceramic mug on the table to read it. It’s clearly store bought, the tag still attached to the handle with the price hastily scratched out. In yellow Star Wars font on the front, it declares “Greatest Dad in the Galaxy”.

“There wasn’t really, like, anything that said ‘hey thanks for helping a new vamp out even though you’re busy and also a werewolf’. So I had to settle,” Simon explains, and Luke cracks a huge smile. Simon smiles back, fangs protruding a little bit over his bottom lip.

 

Luke is swamped with paperwork, words on his computer screen beginning to blur together. He rubs his face wearily, drinking coffee from his Star Wars best dad mug, grimacing when he realizes it’s gone cold. He chews on a piece of beef jerky contemplatively as he reads over what he wrote, sighing to himself irritably. It’s a mess, everything he just typed up about his most recent case.

Dejectedly, he scraps it, and starts again, focusing more on what he’s doing now. He was so absorbed in his work that he didn’t notice the newest detective approaching his desk until she was right next to him, collecting a few files that she needed to look through from the file cabinet behind him. He lifts his cold coffee at her and she nods curtly, eyes traveling past him to his desk.

There are two pictures on it: one of himself, Jocelyn and Clary in front of a fountain and another of Maia and Gretel, beaming at Coney Island. “Are they your daughters?” the detective asks, nodding at the shot of Maia and Gretel, arms around each other, Gretel mid-laugh. Luke is taken aback for a moment, so used to the detectives at the precinct only referencing Clary and Jocelyn.

He clears his throat and says, “They’re family.”