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Jolly Old St. Nicholas

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“He climbs through the chimney?” Draco asked with a raised eyebrow.

“Yes, Draco,” Harry explained for the tenth time.

“And what happens if you don’t have a chimney?”

Harry frowned. “You know, I’m not sure. We had a chimney so I never questioned it. Granted, I never got any gifts from Santa…” He shrugged.

Draco eyed him carefully. “So muggles are perfectly fine with telling their children that a fat man in a red suit climbs down their chimney in the middle of the night, takes their cookies and milk, and leaves unknown packages under the tree?”

“Yes,” Harry said, nodding.

“That is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard.”

Harry sighed. “It’s not supposed to be logical. It’s the magic of Christmas.”

“That’s not what I mean,” Draco said. “I get the whole ‘Santa is magical’ argument. I just don’t see how parents would allow their children to be comfortable with a stalker breaking and entering into their homes while they slept.”

He couldn’t help it, Harry laughed. His loud chuckles woke the sleeping Lily. Draco swore and left Harry to control his giggles. Harry had just calmed himself when Draco came back with the wailing infant. “I swear to Merlin, Harry,” he grumbled, thrusting the child into the other man’s arms.

Harry took his daughter with a smile and cooed to her until she quieted. He grabbed the pacifier that always seemed to be on his person these days. The infant took it with delight and watched Harry as she suckled it. He let the tiny girl take his finger.

Draco leaned against the banister and sighed. “These are the stories you want to tell our child?” he asked, continuing their conversation.

Harry chuckled again. “Yes, Draco. There is something magical about Santa that children appreciate.”

“Even though he never brought you gifts?”

“Especially since he never brought me gifts,” Harry responded. “I want our daughter to be able to tell her friends what she got from Santa for Christmas.”

“My parents never had to make up some jolly fat man, and I still got plenty of presents.”

“It’s not just about the presents,” Harry said. How could he make Draco understand?

“Right. It’s about strangers entering your home.” He sighed at Harry’s frown. “Harry, wizards don’t subscribe to Santa Claus.”

Harry shrugged, trying not to jostle Lily. “By the time she’s ready for Hogwarts she won’t believe in Santa anymore.”

“Then what’s the point?”

“Because every child needs something outside of themselves to believe in,” Harry said firmly. “I never got gifts from Santa, or the Easter bunny, or the tooth fairy, but I always believed that my parents were watching me. That if I just held on for one more day, they would find some way to rescue me. And they did.” He stared at Draco meaningfully.

Draco sighed and decided against asking about the Easter bunny and tooth fairy. Instead he let his own childhood fantasies spill forth. “I didn’t have a lot of friends before Hogwarts,” Draco admitted. “I had play dates that my parents arranged; and children who knew they had to be on my good side because their parents told them to. I remember coming across the muggle story of Cinderella. I thought if I had my own fairy godmother I would wish for friends.” He looked away from Harry, embarrassed. “I thought that if I paid my dues, my fairy godmother would find me and give me a real friend.”

Touched, Harry stood on his toes and kissed his partner’s cheek. “That’s really sad, Draco.”

Draco smiled and turned to Harry. “Well, I eventually got my wish.” Harry smiled. A soft snore drifted from the now sleeping infant. Draco frowned. “She’s still congested.”

“It’s just a cold,” Harry insisted. “It’ll help her immune system.”

With a sigh, Draco let Harry’s words reassure him. He watched his daughter sleep and knew he would give her the world if she only asked. He continued to watch her as he finally gave in to Harry’s request. “I still don’t completely understand this Santa thing,” he said. “But if you think it will make her happy, then we’ll make sure Santa visits every year.”

He could feel Harry’s grin but refused to look up. “You’re an amazing father, Draco,” Harry whispered.

Draco snorted as if to say of course he was, but the words made his heart soar. He had made many mistakes in his life, and had no idea how he had come to find such happiness. As his payment, he would ensure that every single one of his daughter’s Christmases were absolutely perfect.