The Magnificent Seven - ATF

About Birthdays

Disclaimer: The characters of "The Magnificent Seven" belong to MGM, Trilogy, etc. and are used here without permission. No copyright infringement is intended.
Notes: This is just a short little scene that popped into my head. I'm not sure where it came from or where it was going.
Characters: Vin, Chris
Rating: FRC (Fan Rated Acceptable for Children) - Child
Universe: ATF Feedback: To MMW

About Birthdays

Vin slipped down the hall and paused by the corner. Peering around the end of the corridor, he breathed a sigh of relief when the office appeared to be empty. Walking to his desk, he settled down and turned his attention to his computer.

He had just finished typing and was about to take a sip of his coffee when a soft voice asked, “Buy you lunch?”

Sloshing his coffee at the sudden words, he cursed mildly and set down his mug. Turning, he glared suspiciously at the blond. Something was up. He knew without a doubt that something was up, but he hadn’t been able to figure it out. Now Chris wanted to buy him lunch. “Why?” he demanded, his tone suspicious.

Taken aback by the question, the blond just stood and blinked for a moment and managed to mutter, “Wha… what?”

Seeing he wasn’t going to get an immediate response, Vin’s eyes narrowed. Crossing his arms across his chest, he lifted his chin in challenge. “Why’s everyone bein’ so nice to me today?” he demanded. “Ezra brought me one of those fancy pastries I like and wouldn’t take money for it. Josiah got my coffee for me. Nathan brought me a snack. JD loaned me the CD he said he’d never let out of his sight and Buck tried to set me up with Mandy.” He could see Chris was slightly surprised by the information Vin shared. “Now you want to take me to lunch. So you tell me, what’s going on?”

Chris was taken aback, not only by Vin’s suspicion and the generosity of his friends, but by the fact Vin truly didn’t seem to know. “It’s your birthday,” Chris said believing that would explain everything.

“What’s that got to do with anything?” Vin demanded. Birthdays were just another day like any other. Sure his mother had always fussed over him a little and made sure they had peach pie, but birthday celebrations had stopped when she passed.

Larabee stared at his friend. He had heard and seen a lot of people deny it was their birthday or try to pretend they didn’t care, but he had never seen anyone who truly didn’t understand what a birthday was. Pulling over a chair, he sank down and looked at his friend, trying to find the words to explain. Thinking over what he knew of Vin’s past, Chris could only imagine how it seemed birthdays were nothing but a way to keep track of how old you were. How many years had Vin spent the day busy, working or just overlooked?

Finally, he realized he’d just have to come clean about his own motivations and hope the Texan accepted it. “In our world, we don’t often get a chance to show someone how much they mean to us,” Chris began, feeling almost more like a teacher than a friend. Seeing Vin’s brow furrow at this statement, Chris continued quickly. “You show me and the rest of us all the time with the things you do for us and the way you help, and I know we do the same for you. But birthdays are a time when it’s acceptable for your friends to do something extra for you, something more than usual to show what you mean to them.”

The look Vin offered his friend was a mixture of suspicion, doubt and fear. Chris was startled by the last emotion. What could his friend have to fear about his birthday? He understood Vin’s suspicion and the doubt that might inspire, but fear seemed out of place.

Having heard Chris’ explanation, Vin fought the urge to say he wasn’t worth the time or attention. Obviously they all thought he was, but he was afraid of what Chris’ explanation implied – that he was worth something to someone. He had spent so much of his life trying to go unnoticed, being isolated, that he wasn’t sure what to do with the positive attention. “I…” he began. Then looking down at his hands, he took a deep breath. “No one’s made a fuss over me since Ma,” the sharpshooter admitted.

The heart that Larabee was so frequently accused of not having, clenched at the quiet admission. “Then I think it’s about time someone did make a fuss,” he encouraged, waiting for the blue eyes to meet his own. When they finally did, the two men shared a silent conversation all their own. “So how about that lunch?” Chris asked.

This time his request was met with a smile and a quiet, “Sounds good.”


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