Santa Claus is Comin' to Town

by Carole

Main Characters: Buck, JD, Vin

Disclaimer: The Magnificent Seven and its characters are the property of MGM, Trilogy Entertainment, and the Mirisch Corporation.

“You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout, I'm tellin’ you why. SANTA CLAUS IS COMIN’ TO TOWN!”

Buck couldn’t help but smile as JD’s voice grew louder and louder with each word, wrapping up his favorite, and oft-repeated, line with a bellow that could probably be heard by the neighbors.

“He’s makin’ a list, and checkin’ it twice-”

When the song abruptly cut off, and the little boy’s footsteps could be heard thundering down the hallway, Buck smiled again. JD had been dividing his time between racing around the house, singing holiday songs at the top of his lungs, examining the presents under the tree, and entreating Vin to join him at the picture window to watch the large snowflakes that were falling from the sky in abundance.

“Here he comes again,” Buck commented to Vin quietly, laughing when the older boy just rolled his eyes in response.

Vin had been firmly planted at the kitchen table for the past hour or so, working on a picture Buck knew was intended for Chris. But, Buck had to admit, he’d been very patient with JD, joining the smaller boy in front of the window when asked.

“He’s makin’ a list and checkin’ it twice. Atchoo! Gonna find out who’s- Hey, Buck?“

“I’m in here with Vin, JD.” Buck fingered the supply of Kleenex in his pocket. JD had come down with a bad cold a few days earlier, and although the worst of the symptoms had disappeared, the little boy was still going through boxes of tissue at an amazing rate. And, even though the box of cold medicine warned of drowsiness, the small red tablets had instead provided JD with a boost of energy that he didn’t need. In fact, there was no doubt that Buck would be ready for a nap long before his son would be.

Announcing his presence with a few sniffs and a series of coughs, the five-year-old suddenly appeared in the doorway.


“Yes, JD?” Buck said patiently, holding out a tissue automatically after getting a good look at his son’s face.

“What if I’m – atchoo!” The little boy raised his arm, wiping his nose on his sleeve.

Instead of cringing, as he’d done at first, Buck just shrugged. Better his sleeve than his arm at least.

“What if I’m both?” JD asked, finishing his previously interrupted question.

“Both what?”

“Snotty or nice.” JD took a moment to sneeze again, and then continued. “You know, like in my song.”

Before Buck could respond, Vin cut in with, “Them’s not the words, JD.”

“Yeah, huh.” The little boy nodded emphatically, before starting to sing, “He’s makin’ a list and checkin’ it twice. Gonna find out who’s snotty or nice. Santa Claus is comin’ to town.” He looked up at Buck. “See?”

“Uh, JD…” Buck began.

“So, what if I’m both?” He sniffed loudly. “I’m snotty and I’m nice. Which list am I on?”

“You said snotty instead ‘a naughty,” Vin said with a giggle.

“JD, it’s naughty or nice,” Buck corrected, carefully emphasizing each word.

JD blinked. “That’s what I said.”

“No, son, you-“

Apparently it didn’t matter to JD. He suddenly whirled away, and dashed out of the kitchen as he started to sing again. “He sees you when you’re sleepin’, he knows when you’re awake. Atchoo! He knows if you’ve been bad or good, so BE GOOD FOR GOODNESS SAKE!”

Buck just shook his head as JD’s voice once again reached deafening levels, and Vin returned to his coloring. Checking his watch, he sighed tiredly. It would be at least another hour before Chris got home and he could leave the five-year-old safely in the other man’s hands.

“Oh, you better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout, I’m tellin’ you why. Atchoo! SANTA CLAUS IS COMIN’ TO TOWN!”